Faces Places (2017)

What do you get when you combine 89-year old Agnes Varda, a leading figure of the French New Wave, and 33 year-old JR, an accomplished French photographer and muralist?

A must-see French language documentary currently available on Netflix.


from my table at Starbucks 05.14.18

Just finished a study/writing session at the library. I borrowed a book; Crucifixion Creek by Barry Maitland: A Belltree Mystery. My email buddy and I chose it as our first Bookclub for Two Selection. If you’ve read it please feel to contact me – there’s a link in the navigation bar above.

Today I finally got around to adding a Starbucks app to my phone. Wonder how much I’ve spent at Starbucks over the last fourteen years? Enough to fund a month long first-class tour of Europe for two I’m sure. I don’t regret a dime of it. It was all good. I happily wrote, read, hung out with family & friends, people watched, day dreamed, and drank endless iced soy chais & hot caramel macchiatos. It’ll be interesting to see how many free drinks and treats I earn while I loiter 😉

My day started with the comedy of  Hari Kondabolu  & Ali Wong.  These two Original Comedy Specials alone were worth the membership price. For even more laughing out loud, check out Aziz Ansari’s series; Master of None – both seasons.

Tomorrow is a New Moon – one of the best times to start a new project.

Sign me Hoping for Inspiration.

reflections, memories, and a bowl of hot and sour soup – Mothers Day 2018

For me Chinese food is all about good times. Saturday nights with my father and brother Joey at the Good Earth on West 79th Street. Thick flavorful black bean sauce loaded with shrimp, fried rice with bits of everything in it, and the Lobster Cantonese that was Daddy’s favorite.

Some of my best conversations with my daughter Josie have included a side of fried dumplings and egg rolls.

And so many orders from the Empire Szechuan delivered to our door back when my husband and I lived in Manhattan. We’d watch movies, talk, nibble on Sesame Beef and assorted appetizers till the wee hours.

Right now I’m tucked away in a Chinese take-away while the friend I’m staying with attends a meeting. Yes, some people plan meetings on Mothers Day. A steaming bowl of hot and sour soup with lots of crunchy noodles and a side of pork dumplings in spicy ginger sauce laid out on Formica table. That first tangy spoonful – so good.

If I were home today it would be all about lying in bed, and bingeing on Amazon Prime or Netflix. My daughter Josie would be making us all a special dinner. Fresh pasta would be involved, and cake, fluffy vanilla frosting on white as snow layers, my absolute favorite.

The kids called me on their way to church this morning. I’ve been away from home several weeks now working on a writing project, that probably won’t make a dime, but will give me a sense of joy and accomplishment, and they couldn’t be more supportive. Wow. Lucky me, right?

Miss you much my darlings.

My first ever Mothers Day plays out on my mind’s screen. I’m 21. It’s Sunday May 8th 1983. My one and only is just 9 days old. Eight pounds two ounces of blue-eyed blessing cradled in my arms. Everyone in the neighborhood is congratulating me.  Happy First Mothers Day Frances!  I’m more than a little dazed. This was never a happy day for me before. We lost our mother early.  Daddy took us to live with his old-style campagna mother. Imagine Sophia Petrillo plus Marie Barone times three with an extra dash of venom – but that’s life you know. Grandma managed to redeem herself with me by being good to my daughter. She’s gone nearly 15 years now, and I think of her often – in a good way.

So I hope you all had a wonderful day whether you celebrated the holiday or not.

Josie at Asia one of our go-to places…

And I ask myself; Where is your place in this world Frances D?

Written word inspired by a Photo Challenge in the Daily Post

There was only one answer until age 51: New York City. I was a card carrying, non-driving boroughbred who only went beyond the boundaries of Manhattan for serious business like escorting my daughter to visit her future in-laws in Cape Cod, or an excursion to Coney Island or Atlantic City. I have a thing for boardwalks.

Then everything happened. My husband retired early due to illness – he’s doing quite well now. The rent on my Manhattan apartment of 31 years TRIPLED. My daughter Josie and her husband Chris insisted we come out to be with them in Cape Cod. Thank you Universe for the best kids ever.

Going from Manhattan, NY to Pocasset, MA which is a CDP (census designated place) with a population of 2,851 was a change.

In New York the view from my apartment window was the tarpaper roof of the building next door. But birds sang to us every morning from the fire escape railings, and the huge ivy plant atop my bookshelf grew as if it’s home were along the Amazon.

My husband and I thought we would live out lives there.

Then in just one day we went from uber urban to country folk.

The view from our bedroom window now is the backyard, so many trees, bushes, grass, wild flowers and wild life. Squirrels, chipmunks, ground hogs, raccoons, a tortoise, and bunnies call that space home. Visitors include coyotes, foxes, feral cats, opossum, wild turkeys, hawks, and even a vulture. And so many beautiful song birds, and even more bugs!

Everything everywhere is postcard scenic. The people are friendly. And the libraries are simply the best. But still – it took some getting used to on my part.

Fortunately I have a friend in Northern Jersey (minutes from NYC by car or bus) with a guest room and a generous nature. This gives me another living experience – suburban life. The homes are closer together. We’re in a town with a main drag you can walk in minutes. There’s stores, restaurants, and a bus system that takes you right into the city.

So where does Frances D belong?

Well, right now she’s moving between three different places, living three different lifestyles – Frances D belongs wherever she’s at!

Where I’m at…05.09.18

In a pretty good place actually…

I’m deep in an off-line – for now – writing/study project. Stay tuned.

This morning’s Morning Pages – they’re my lifeline – helped me organize squeeze every bit productivity-wise out of today. It’s around 2:30pm,  and everything is already checked off my daily small goals list.

I decided to put off my A-Z Challenge Reflections post till this weekend. I want to visit a few more blogs. My long-time friend/blog buddy Lissa over at rain-swept was kind enough to include me on her list of favorites post.  She’s an artist and creative writer who can write a pretty funny list too.

So what to do with the rest of my day?

Time for a new small goals list:

  • Research – IPhone camera – Question: Is it possible to change the settings on my IPhone’s camera so the photos are not quite so heavy? They’re taking up a lot of my blog’s media allotment.
  • Write – Lists Page of personal favorites (just about everything from movies to personally owned items) for this blog.
  • Delete – Unnecessary emails and other accounts – in other words lighten my online load
  • Share Trello – the site and/or app can help you organize every part of your life!

Till next time.

Your friend Frances D




and I’m Ready for a New Challenge…

Last month’s A-Z Challenge 2018 helped me get my blog groove back on after a long blog break. Actually the challenge is not quite over; reflections posts will be up May 7th. And I’m taking the time to visit as many of the blogs on the Master List of Participants as I can. It’s cool starting at Z and working your way back to A.

Yesterday I visited cosy mystery author AJ Blythe’s blog; her A-Z Challenge theme was serial killers.

Another find Suzanne Blazier’s: A Movie for Every Mood Blog; her theme was movies that won Best Original Screenplay at the Oscars; she also included some Best Adapted Screenplays & a few notables that didn’t win.

So, if you are going to be participating in or know of a upcoming challenge – please leave some info and anything else you like in comments.

Much blog love to all,
Frances D