Rebellion: hindered self-expression expressing itself. I’m thankful for all the rebels. Long live your (r)evolution!

Happy Thanksgiving Day, my friends.

Thank you for the attention and energy you offer me here at Convivial Society. I am humbled and inspired to do more!


Inspired & Home from New York (Pics)

It’s been three days since my return from an eye-opening weekend in New York. The memories continue to replay in my mind…the chemistry I felt with the city, with the women who surrounded me, the impact of the stories and knowledge shared by each speaker, and the guards let down and tears shed by various women of the audience at Rich Happy & Hot LIVE.

My second day back home, I shed some tears of my own as I spoke to a dear friend by phone and began to express my deep gratitude for our friendship and their continued unconditional love and support in my efforts to express The Convivial Woman and grow in the comfort of my writer’s skin. When someone believes in you and just loves you for all that you are and all that you’re not (yet), what a powerful force you can be in the world!

I love telling stories by way of the eye, and you’d better believe I snapped a good number of moments while in The Big Apple. So have yourself a look-see at my photojournalism skills! There will be plenty of time to share words, but for now, let this visit to Convivial Society be a visual experience to enjoy. Let me know if anything grabs you by the heart!

Click on the album to view and experience New York with me all over again:


A Rich Happy & Hot LIVE Experience in NYC

The weekend has come and gone! Rich Happy & Hot is over and officially another unforgettable, incomparable experience under my belt.

Here I am sitting at LaGuardia waiting to board my flight and I could talk excitedly about how amazing and inspiring Marie Forleo is, how she’s the real deal when it comes to a business woman showing up 100% as herself, how I met so many amazing and inspiring women with some impressive businesses in the making, etc etc…all true details, but honestly, my emotions are still processing everything in it’s entirety that I experienced this weekend. 

Something big definitely happened

at Rich Happy & Hot LIVE, because whenever something major is happening within or around me, I get quiet. Yes, me- a writer, and occasional loquacious convivial woman, has no words to describe my feeling yet. Powerful, mind-blowing, phenomenal sound weak. So how about I just say (more…)


Words of Wisdom from America’s Sweetheart

My boyfriend keeps telling me I’ve got to own things. So, first I bought this car. And then he told me I oughta get a house. ‘Why a house?’ ‘Well, you gotta have a place to park the car.’ -Julia Roberts.

It belongs to you first. Then whoever you wish to share it with & however you want to live it…well, that’s still a choice you own.


Guest Post by One of My All-Time Favorite Friends

Is it time for you to go from What Happened? to What’s Next?
I’d like to share these words of wisdom one of my all-time best friends, Juan Carlos Bernal recently shared with me.

Carlos (as I know him) has been very encouraging and supportive of my efforts and message at Convivial Society and I couldn’t be more grateful to have someone like him in my corner.

It’s certain that neither him nor I ever imagined he’d be making an appearance here since my site targets women and he’s a MAN MAN, but his words struck me as being pretty powerful and I felt it would be selfish on my part to keep them all to myself. I’m sure we can all benefit from some tough talk and love every now and then, so with his permission, here they are…


Mantra: What’s Your Thought Form?

I have this humongous Synonym Finder that I’ve had since my sophomore year in High School and keep handy, because looking up words and all the many different ways to say things fascinates me. The next best thing to that is Google, Wikipedia and Merriam-Webster online. I also love the book Sin and Syntax, and perusing books by Karen Elizabeth Gordon. (Feel free to share you favorite resources in a comment!).

So, I found myself hanging out on my bed with my friends, Synonym Finder, Laptop and my All Things Convivial notebook and I started thinking about the word Mantra. The following post evolved because of that thought…

MANTRA: is a sound, syllable, word, or group of words that are considered capable of “creating transformation”; a translation of the human will or desire; an expression of “Being”; “Thought forms.”

Here are my thoughts in word, sound and symbol form (as well as a brief history behind how they came about for me):

Word: Convivial

The year is 2001 and ‘m watching Barbara Walters interview the cast of the movie, Ocean’s Eleven. Leading lady, Julia Roberts is surrounded by Matt Damon, Brad Pitt, George Clooney and Don Cheadle. Along these lines, Barbara asks her, “So how was your experience making the movie with all these great guys?” Julia purses her lips as we all know her to do and says, “Convivial.” Like a gust of wind to the depths of my soul, I was overtaken by the sound of this word. Never forgot it. As you can tell.

Mantra: Know Your Power. Live Your Life.

Sitting in my kitchen with my dear friend, Nina thinking of a tag line for my soon-to-be site, Convivial Society. What do I want to say? What is my message? Those were the questions to kick off our brainstorming session. Nina wrote while I threw out words and phrases, scratching this and that off the list…then…it hit me…and she smiled and wrote it down. That was it. No doubt about it.


While working to create the logo for this site, I provided these details to the designer for logo creation:

Need a logo designed for woman’s website that will focus on empowering and connecting women in age group 20-40’s who want to learn from and share their experience with like-minded women who are ambitious, original, caring, energetic, positive, fun-loving, and seeking the guidance,resources and relationships to live a convivial life.

(Wanted designer to get a feel for me, since I am my target market, so I said the following…)

Intuitive, insightful, thoughtful, lover of the written word, creative, writer, diligent, vigilant, persevering spirit, embrace strength, humility and vulnerability ; love the words equanimity, rhapsody, sexuality, harmony, bossy…and lovely.

Convivial times, indeed.

When you imagine your thoughts in “form”. What do they look like? Sound like? Feel like?


Create. Embrace. Enjoy. Space.

On September 14th, Bindu Wiles launched The Shed Project, 8 Weeks of Losing It / An Adventure in Letting Go. Here is a woman who has created a space for anyone to join her in shedding anything from material possessions to love handles to burdening thought patterns. What an adventure to embark on!

I am someone who has usually found some ease in letting go- I repeat, some ease, because somehow I knew and felt there was something or someone on the other side, reaching for my hand, patiently waiting for me to grab onto it.

Space…it’s something I’ve always been very comfortable with and enjoyed. The first time I recall my ability to let go of what was to embrace what would be was the summer of ’93 when my friends and neighbors in Chicago, The Delira family, announced they would move back to their hometown of Aguascalientes in Mexico. I was about to lose five friends all at the same time.

They were my everyday go-to crowd. Our time together consisted of making cotton candy while dancing to Madonna’s Like A Virgin song, creating fake money out of grocery store ads when our monopoly money ran out from long intervals of playing, reenacting entire movie scenes from Mermaids (I played Winona Ryder), rollerblading through Lincoln Park to Chicago’s Boardwalk and back, and cruising the streets of Chicago singing Cathy Dennis’ song, Too Many Walls. We thought the world was all ours and it truly was in every one of those moments.

When they said they were moving away, I don’t remember taking the news hard. I simply accepted the direction life was taking us. When they left, I remember being alone. Still…I managed my way through it all. I knew I would see them again…someday and trusted the time and new space that surrounded me would bring me comfort and new people and experiences would enter my life. Eventually, they did and a new phase of life began.

In 1995, it was my family’s turn to pack up. I’d been away for nearly 6 weeks during my summer break working at a camp in Orr, Minnesota when I got a call from my mother letting me know as soon as I returned, our family would plan to move back to Texas. I had grown up in Chicago’s inner city, spent the most crucial years of my upbringing there, years that shaped me as a person, was almost finished with high school, and had all of my friends there, but the first thing that came out of my mouth was, “Can we PLEASE go to Austin?” I was ready to go. It was just my nature to accept and embrace the new.

I’ll always remember one of my last nights before moving. I was with two close friends and we were huddled together, arm in arm, swaying back and forth listening to Boyz II Men’s song It’s So Hard To Say Goodbye. We were being overly dramatic and trying to make ourselves cry but we laughed more than anything. I thought I would really start crying or feel depressed when it was time to go, but it didn’t happen. I was ready to move forward and it didn’t mean that I didn’t care enough for my friends. I trusted the friendships would survive the change and that I would do my part to nurture them. Fifteen years later, they are still in my life and we’re as close as can be. One of them even served as my labor coach when I had my first son. She saw my vagina and e’erthing. Yup, she’s still my friend.

Shedding a new skin is hard to do, but I’m always reassured that taking this action is necessary and good for me. It’s another way of expressing my personal evolution and there’s no need to fear what results from it. So, I continue the ritual today with The Shed Project.

It’s a regular habit of mine to get rid of stuff around my house, thus making way for new things to enter, but after reading The Law of The Ugly Chair by Danielle LaPorte, I am reminded to be even more conscious of what I consider sacred to me and give it the space it deserves.

I’m thrilled that Bindu has asked me to guest write a post for The Shed Project and can’t wait to share it with you all so when the post is up, I’ll definitely let you know! My hope is to inspire you to embark on your own journey of shedding your skin for one that better suits your spirit. If you’re intrigued to learn more or ready to join the shedventure, check out Bindu’s launch video and sign up!


5 Things That Keep Me Centered

1. Watching and quoting lines from any one of these movies: Say Anything, For Keeps, Good Will Hunting, Sound of Music, The Departed, Like Water For Chocolate, Snatch, Lock Stock and Two Smoking Barrels, Austin Powers, Seven Brides for Seven Brothers

2. Looking into either my husband’s or both son’s eyes and telling them I love them while running my hand through their hair

3. Having a hyena laugh out loud moment with my mom or people-watching with my Dad

4. Sending snail mail to my friends or gifts just because

5. Remembering who I am and what I am here to do

It’s hard to narrow anything down to a top five list, because there are so many ways I like to treat myself, so I’ll keep writing!

I like to blast Enigma or Deep Forest throughout my home, dance salsa, read Brian Johnson’s Philosopher’s Notes, be around my extended family and make everyone laugh unexpectedly, smile at a random stranger and send them love from a distance, tell the waiter I’ll take two orders of dessert…just for me, watch my two year old run around trying to make his homemade Superman cape fly, cheer on my 10 month old as he reaches milestone after milestone, offer advice to my friends when they need it, get a massage or facial, travel to new places, return to places that really stayed with me, drink lychee flavored bubble tea, rollerblade in empty parking garages gleaming the cube style, make myself french toast at midnight on occasion, and of course, express myself by way of the written word.

Although that doesn’t even come close to saying it all, I’ll go ahead and stop right there. I’m always up for new ideas, so feel free to drop me a comment and let me know how you like to treat yourself!


XO Hugs and Kisses XO

Recently, I spent a family day at The Nasher Sculpture Center located in downtown Dallas with my husband and two sons and snapped this photo. I didn’t catch the name of the artist or of the sculpture, so forgive that missing detail, but this rock-turned-work of art speaks volumes of what we crave in our lives every day- love, comfort, compassion, acceptance, understanding, and refuge. The fact that an image so simple can pull on the human eye and tug at the heart is undeniable proof of this truth.

You can see the reflection of my husband carrying our firstborn son in the glass as we all looked on in admiration of this beautiful yet simple piece. My hubby wants to create a replica of this image in our own backyard and I don’t doubt his ability to do so. We’re all artists in our own unique way– it just takes encouragement and belief in oneself. I’m curious to know what materials my husband will use to construct his piece, but we shall see. Once the project is complete, I’ll be sure to share a photo of it with you.

Hugs and kisses to the artist in you.


Complimentary Gift For You!

An open invitation to any woman who wants to know her power, act more confidently, and live more convivially…


Last year on my 30th birthday, I was inspired to be the giver vs. receiver of gifts. Such an act of pure selflessness gave me a great sense of what it means to be convivial and has served as a lasting memory for me and those who celebrated with me.

I’ve decided to make it a yearly ritual and this year’s birthday present has your name on it!

I’m deeply grateful for all the support and love you have shown Convivial Society, so here’s some love right back at ya!

Download your FREE COPY of
THE CONVIVIAL WOMAN: A Declaration Of Who You Are


The Definitive Regal Chic Brunch

Recently, I was inspired to put on the ritz in the form of a Regal Chic brunch for my girlfriends. There was no exceptional reason for the occasion other than my desire to spoil the women in my life and give them an experience they wouldn’t forget. How many women want to be spoiled? Raising my hand! But, how often do women spoil each other? It’s all about letting love get the best of us and spreading the joy. I gave my friends one month’s notice to mark their calendars for the event; told them to save the date and gave no inkling of what to expect. Little by little, a vision for the event began to reveal itself to me and with each new inspiring thought, I took to the stores and prepared for the big day. Initially, it was suppose to be a convivial day spent with just my friends, but then the whole life coaching with Lisa Carmen came about, and I began to think about challenging myself in ways I hadn’t before, so I chose to treat the brunch as a mini-workshop. It was an opportunity to take my efforts to empower and inspire women offline and stand before them in person. I was nervous about what I would do, what I would say, how the whole presentation aspect of the event would flow, but I decided to take the risk, to face any fears that might surface and put myself out there in a new way. It was time to take the stage.

When the day came and all was set to go, I felt my power coming through for me like a dear friend. I was no longer worried about what could go wrong or what I could miss saying to get my desired message across, and I especially wasn’t listening to the voice within saying, Who do you think you are doing this…What gives you the right to stand before a group of women and want to empower them…You don’t have anything valid to say…blah blah blah. I decided to let my heart lead the way and surrendered my desire for complete control. What a relief it was to be a follower! I felt such confidence as everything slowly came together. My guests began to show up and wanted to offer a helping hand, but I smiled and said, “I’ve got it covered. Just enjoy yourself today.” It felt wonderful to serve others, to offer all the love in me without any conditions, any expectations of getting payback.

When all was said and done, the event was a hit! I allowed the weight of the world to fall off my shoulders, thus creating a similar atmosphere for the women in my company. We had entered into a Convivial Society and anything was possible. I saw joy, expressions of pure elation, witnessed the little girl in every woman playing and giggling as they participated in the meal and activities. I felt light on my feet, formless, as if only my spirit walked around overseeing the event. I believe that’s what truly happened. My mother was my right-hand woman in bringing it all to fruition and I couldn’t have thought of anyone better to choose as my partner. By taking on the challenge to stand before friends as The Convivial Woman, I had stepped into a new realm. I had taken the idea of a Convivial Society and turned it into a real place, a real moment, for real women. I can only move forward from this point on and the ideas for more events are making their way to the forefront of my mind’s eye. Creation…it’s quite the beauty to experience. Fear or no fear, I’m wide awake and behind this wheel now…there’s no turning back.

Feast your eyes on the brunch pictures by clicking directly on the album below.

The Definitive Regal Chic Brunch

In Silence: All You Want, All You’ve Ever Wanted

I began the weekend by focusing on my home to clean and clear space for all that I want the next week, month and year to bring. After shaking my tail to Lady Gaga while wiping down the kitchen counter, I switched to my Bebe Pandora station and heard the song Pa Mi Casa (To My House) for the first time. After just a few lyrics,
I stopped everything I was doing and raced to write down a few lines from the song, but then more lyrics kept coming and I couldn’t help how they were making me feel, so I decided the song needed to go down in convivial history as yet another must-share moment. Hence today’s post. The more I listened to the musical message, the more I found my discovery of the song and Bindu Wiles’ newly announced community project, The Shed Project, to be perfectly timed. It was a superior example of synchronicity in action.

If you’re in process of embarking on a new journey and letting go of all you know, whether in the grandest or smallest of ways, I invite you to listen to Bebe’s song and ponder her words, THEN read all about Bindu’s plan to let herself go for ten straight months!

Note: Is Spanish not your native tongue? Mine neither (it’s my second), so I’ve offered up my best translation of the song lyrics below.


Pa Mi Casa / To My Home

Now I return to my house
I say goodbye to you for the time being
‘cause I feel like being the girl
who at many times no one believed.

You have to look within
for if the river is running dry

know that below the earth
an ocean travels.

The prairies of my land
Meet with the sky

And that is where I rest
And look for my memories.

There are those who prefer bigger things
for me, I prefer the small

The distance helps you to look
with much less fear

I want to return to closing my eyes
to see what I want

I have no fear of the time passing
but that it passes and memories will be lost

In silence
In silence
There is all that I want, all that I’ve ever wanted

We accumulate so much
And breathe much less

Each day the air is less pure
And every day that passes I continue missing you.

Go wherever you may go
I’d even die for you

For the prairies of my land
Meet with the sky

And that is where I rest
And look for my memories.

In silence
In silence
There is all I want, all I’ve ever wanted
There is all I want, all I’ve ever wanted.

Spanish Lyrics here.
photo courtesy of

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