3.20.2014

LADIES WEEKEND IN THE CITY


i've had my head in the clouds all this week, thinking all sorts of things about women. what it means to be a woman, what women need from themselves + from each other, and other womanly things. womanity should really be a word. 

i grew up with a bucketful of cousins + aunts at my disposal + as such never cared a fig for having real friends. my family were my friends, as real friends as friends could ever be. there were easily a million of us lovins living practically down the street from each other in arizona where we grew up + it wasn't until fairly recently that i started to feel like i might need the kinds of friends in my life that these women had always been for me, and it wasn't until fairly recently that i understood just how difficult a task that actually is. it's hard to find friends that double as family when your friends aren't already family to begin with. is the obvious statement of the year. that kind of friendship takes years + years + years to develop. i've only been at this business a short little while, and i like me some immediate results, you know how that goes.

i think what it comes down to is, as a woman, for me, i find that women often let me down. mostly this is my fault. overly high expectations, of course. one has no business expecting from friends what i want to expect from my friends, mostly because i didn't have good examples of friends as friends growing up, i had family. so i put myself in the position where i let women let me down. doesn't it seem like too often we're unnecessarily dishonest with each other? afraid to commit, afraid to be raw, afraid to be vulnerable? so there's just me, as open and obvious as a one-paged book, repeatedly being a dork and feeling dorky about being a dork. but this weekend was a good reminder for me that there are other dorks out there that are already mine. and it's all right.

riiiiiight. but this is a post about chinatown. over the weekend i got to play host to three of my, seriously, eleven aunts. jen + stacey are my dad's youngest sisters, nikki is married to my dad's youngest brother, stacey is four month older than me + jen + nik are both brandon's age. it's crazy, right? nik unfortunately missed the bulk of our naked childhood in the desert, though she's gone on to become one of my most wonderful + dearest friends. jen, i just love jen. jen has a zest + curiosity for life that is so inspiring. and stacey! me and stacey, man... we were inseparable as kids. having stacey in my living room after so many years of not having stacey in my living room, it was kind of a moment for me. sort of an exercise in continuity, if that even makes sense.

in any case, we went to chinatown on saturday and you know what? don't do that. save chinatown for a monday. 


we stopped in at the fish market because that's always a good time, and while we were there a lobster made a break for it and toppled out of the lobster bucket and onto the sidewalk right in front of me + huck, + huck's eyes. wide as saucers. he looked horrified + amazed + afterward i could tell he'd grown at least two inches taller from the experience. it was like he'd learned a thing or two about the world.

we ate dumplings at our favorite dumpling place for lunch + then wandered into little italy for cannoli, and cannoli! i've never loved cannoli but that's because i'm dumb. have cannoli always come in all these flavors? it doesn't feel terribly legit to say this, but anyway, you should get the tiramisu. "you'll love it."

"some woman is gonna want me to do it to her and i'm not gonna know what it is!"


apparently this is, like, *the* place for cannoli. who knew? i guess most of the restaurants + bakeries in little italy buy their cannoli from la bella ferrara, so if you go straight to the source you'll get them cheaper, or something, who knows if this is true, but this part was funny: as i was across the street taking that photo up there of the shop for future reference, a woman stopped me on the sidwalk and excitedly asked, "is there an actor from the soprano's over there?!?" day made.


brandon got these two shots, and ain't they purty? 

the end.

p.s. jen is a writer (she writes fiction!) and she wrote a little about the trip in her author's blog HERE. we were on the same wavelength this weekend big time, jen.

21 comments :

  1. I thoroughly enjoyed the comment about the Sopranos because the two times I've eaten at Il Cortile I've seen Soprano's cast members. It must be a requirement.

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  2. gosh you always give me new places to visit when in new york city! i should be writing these all down! and i get what you mean about friends. so hard. i have a wonderful sister so i've come to find real good friends are a gift. they aren't really given now a days. we're lucky when it happens. :)

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  3. Welcome back Natalie Holbrook!

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  4. That's so nice that your aunts are your age! I just have the one sister (and two brothers but brothers are different) who I thought until recently was a close friend too but I've realised that she is in fact everything a friend should never be, and it has bummed me out big time. Families eh! x

    Katie @ http://whatyoudoingkatie.blogspot.co.uk

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  5. Lovely college wearing. You can buy college papers online with trust of payment. Ir will give you best quality.

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  6. I hear ya. I often find myself getting let down by friends and you're right, you can't put expectations like that on friends. That's lovely your family is so close! Looks like a lovely adventure was had!

    xo
    Rachel

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  7. i totally relate. i grew up with a house full of sisters (one of them, my twin) and always go into the "meet new friends" arena with huge expectations - like they're supposed to get my quirks off the bat. but they're deep-seeded quirks and need loads of unearthing, which is a lot of work. the least i can do is prvide a shovel as a sort of "welcome gift"? meh!

    www.currenttempo.com

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  8. I always felt it was harder to become really good friends with girls who had sisters - they didn't need me like I needed them with two older brothers. It's probably why after 15 years my best friend (who always had two brothers) and I are still close despite moving away and starting our own families.

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  9. I really like your thoughts, and seem to find myself perhaps on the opposite end? I didn't have good girl friends growing up; I felt like I was living in Mean Girls. So most of my friends were guys, and even though they were genuine friendships, I was quickly pegged as one of "those girls." Now my expectations for adult relationships with women are so low. I have my husband, my best friend, and then my friends are people that I DO things with--not necessarily a deep, vulnerable relationship. I guess I've sadly allowed myself to be conditioned into NOT expecting that. But I would like to think about things differently, and I would like to find that friendship where I'm on the same page with another woman.

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  10. Ah! I find myself nodding my head or thinking 'that is exactly the way I would have said that if I were awesome' at basically anything I read from you. I feel the same way about woman-friends, but don't have the family to take their place or make the sting any less painful. I try to be open and honest and the kind of friend that I want in a woman and I usually just feel like a dork and that woman doesn't feel the same way. It's a bit like dating really, which was never really fun if we're all honest. My husband really is my best friend, which is awesome and stuff, but I'm still holding out for those lady friends I've always wanted. Or just one lady friend will do.

    Also, I snort-laughed so hard and choked on my coffee as I read the lobster story. I don't know why I think that's so funny, but it is.

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  11. I feel you girl, only on the opposite end. Like you, I grew up with family BFFs-- cousins and aunts, in my case-- and since we never lived super close to each other, carrying on those relationships now that we're adults has been easy because we've always been close despite the distance. My problem is rather that in trying to make non-family friends, I'm extreeeeemely private and reserved, and it's hard to forge meaningful relationships if you don't allow yourself to be vulnerable. Teach me the secret to being a "one-paged book"! ;)

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  12. Oh, so jealous of you ladies. If there is one thing I love, it is walking around the city. But these cold days keep me at bay. Thankfully, Spring is here and I'll stroll around the city like crazy! haha

    Beautiful round of photos! :)

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  13. So many times I have read your blog (or Naomi/Love Taza's, because you two are awesome) and have thought that I wish I knew you and that we were friends, and not in a creepy stalker way, but in a "man, what she says really just resonates with me" kind of way. And again, on the subject of finding and keeping true and loyal female friends, I am right there with ya. All throughout my childhood I had friends that were girls but it was always so much easier to be friends with guys because, for the most part, they're drama free and more loyal. Now I have my husband, who is the best friend I ever could have asked for, so he's taken over the role of pretty much all male friends, but I still find that I struggle with my female friends. Two years ago, he got seriously ill, almost died and spent 3 1/2 months in the hospital. It started when I was just over halfway through my pregnancy with our daughter and our son was 17 months old. I lost a lot of friends during that time because stuff like that really weeds out the non-true from the true and it shocked me to see how little these "friends" cared, when I would have been by their side through something tough like that. But then I later realized that maybe it was just too much to ask from those friendships, because it did last a long time and maybe it just wasn't meant to last. So in a way, it was a good "weed out," if you will, and it's allowed me to focus more on the friendships that actually do matter (new trust issues aside), on both ends. Anyway, I'm sorry for writing you a novel and I hope you know that you're not alone and some of us think that you're pretty much amazing, like the popular girl at school you want to be friends with but can't. You're that cool.

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  14. women need women..i can't said much about this,and totally agreed with you.sometimes i had those feelings too,i need woman to give me wise advice, to compliment each others..well,i did got a few women in my life (my mother & sisters) and they're superb great persons!! thanks for sharing your post and opinions.i totally love and addicted reading your blog.

    xo josephine
    www.joselovincolors.com

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  15. I gots two things to say!

    1) Cannoli. I don't get it. I've tried because it is totally the type of thing that I should be completely obsessed with, but I can't do it. Please teach me your ways of cannoli eating.

    2) Totally on the same pagina (!) re: friends. I grew up with 2 sisters nad 2 brothers and lots of childhood friends, but in adulthood with my 'real' friends, I've simply found it is easier and more immediately fulfilling for my family to be my friends (and my man of course). It's like you never even had to do the small talk and the 'getting to know you' phase becaues they're just always been around, there's that constant level of backup going on and they get you without any weird ingenuine layer of weird. I don't know. Am I even making sense anymore Hmm.

    jemima x

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  16. My theory about cannoli is that a lot of people cut their teeth on cannoli made with sweet, dessert cheeses like mascarpone, which is delicious but not exactly traditional. Then, when they eat cannoli made with the more traditional ricotta, and with pastry dough that isn't super sweet, they don't like it very much. Maybe this isn't accurate. It's just my theory.

    Anyway! I never learned to really cultivate friendships for the long-term, I always just kind of moved on to whatever friendships my new environment (school, school again, church, etc) brought to me and let the old ones fall by the wayside. Now that I don't have any of those ready-made environments to fall back on, I just cannot seem to connect to anyone in a real way. I really want to, but I just never learned how to navigate all those deep, craggy bits of friendship that turn them into family. So I feel ya. It's a tough world out there.

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  17. gorgeous, gorgeous photos. Happy Friday!

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  18. Ah I'm moving to new york in 2 weeks and your blog is getting me so excited! Beautiful photos (insert like twenty heart eyed emojis)

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  19. Natalie, you just put into words exactly how I have been feeling about some girlfriends I have had/have in my life. Overly high expectations = disappointment ... I was always asking myself why won't she open up more, talk about her life in more depth, with more honesty? Why can't she share intimate things with me? I thought we were better friend than this superficial feeling relationship...but then I realized, some friends might not be capable of a relationship like that. Maybe all they can do is superficial. And once I accepted that, I was ok with the friendship we had. I think when we are lucky enough to find a true kindred spirit ... they are the ones that become like family, and the ones we hold tight and cherish the most! I have a few girlfriends like that, and they are just like sisters to me! :)

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  20. Was it hard for you to give up the last name Lovin? Cause that name rocks! ;)

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