Missing in Action

I have been missing in action for about three and a half years.  My life has completely changed, and I look forward to sharing my newest works with you all!  Stay tuned!!

Nikki’s Top Ten

I was reading a list online today of the top ten things you should do each day in order to have a successful day.  I found it a bit ironic that someone else was telling me I needed to do each day in order to have a great day.  That list blossomed my blog today – Nikki’s Top Ten.  Now I am not going to say that “this is what you need to do to have a successful day.”  I am simply reporting my top ten things I do each day to you only get your brain thinking about your personal top ten things you do, or should do each day to have a great day.  So here it goes counting down from ten…

10.  Wear Yoga Pants and Fuzzy Slippers – I wear these everyday I that I possibly can.  Right now I am wearing them.  I feel comfortable, relaxed and cozy.  What a great feeling!

9.  Surround Yourself with Inspiration – My whole house is inspiring.  It is painted fabulous colors, filled with great artwork and has the best people and animals inside it!

8.  Wear Feetie Jammies – Need I say more?

7. Indulge – When I say indulge I mean however you want.  Sometimes I eat something really fantastic, drink wine, take a nap, buy a pair of shoes – it can be a simple indulgence or a really BIG one.  It doesn’t matter:)

6.  Dare to be Different and Create a New Norm – I dare to be different all the time.  I color my hair funky, have tattoos and piercings.  I like to wear clothes that pop, and shoes that most people wouldn’t be caught dead in!  I love it all!  Who says what’s “normal?”

5.  Release Yourself From Others Judgements – Who cares what other people think about you?  Does it really matter?  They are most likely jealous, and wish they could live as freely as you do!

4.  Fill Your Creativity Cup Often – Whether it be going to the place that energizes your creativity, or buying a new coloring book, your cup will fill up creating a world of imagination and possibilities!

3.  Honor and Respect Your “Thing” – Yep.  That “thing” that you do and you just don’t know why you do it.  Don’t fight it.  Just honor it.  It is a part of you.

2.  Do What You Love and Love What You Do – It is important to wake up each morning and love what you do.  I love waking up, being a mommy and spending the day being creative.  On the days I work at my mental health clinic, I enjoy the clients I work with, and love helping people.

1.  Live Playfully and Peacefully – I always find time to play!  When you play you help create a balance in your life, which leads to a feeling of peace.

So that’s it.  My list that I live by.  Think about your list.  Are you liking the way you are living, or do some changes need to be made?  Do what works for you.  If you follow your heart you will find your life to by more enjoyable and fulfilling.

Me playing at Pier 1. I actually ended up buying that chair. I use it when I need a time-out from the real world.

Me playing on Halloween Night – kids don’t have as much fun with Powerwheels as adults do!



A Cup of Hollywood

Within the past year I found my favorite place in the world.  It is simple really – it wasn’t Italy, Australia or the exotic rainforest.  It was Hollywood.

If you have never visited Hollywood, like I had not, you picture all the glitz and glamour that is portrayed on television.  The red carpet, the stars on Hollywood Walk of Fame, and limousines with famous people riding in the back them.  Yes, this is Hollywood – on a night of a new movie premier.  On a daily basis Hollywood presents a much different culture, which is what made it my favorite place in the world.

When you stroll down the Hollywood Walk of Fame you see many sights.  It goes a little like this:  wax museum, tour bus (to visit the stars home), porn shop with stripper clothes, restaurant, wax museum, tour bus, porn shop, restaurant – and so on.  Mixed into the fabulous sites is a plethora of filth, poverty and garbage.  So why is this my favorite place on earth?  Hollywood has an energy that cannot be described.  It is filled with people chasing their dreams with a hope that they will, one day, come true.  You can actually feel the buzz of energy in the air.  It is so inspiring and freeing to be in Hollywood.  I can spend hours in Hollywood taking it all in.

We all need a favorite place to go.  A place that we feel refreshed and inspired.  A place that opens our hearts and honors our creativity.  A place bouncing with so much energy that you can actually feel the buzz in the air.  Hollywood fills my cup of creativity.  Where do you fill your cup of creativity?  What gifts does it offer you?  Do you feel like you are floating on a cloud when you are there?  If so – that is your place.  Soak it in.  Use the energy to inspire you and fill your cup of creativity.  Live your dreams without fear – like those who went to Hollywood.

Me on the Hollywood Walk of Fame with Iron Man!

Impulsive Living or Just Living?

Bucket lists.  Why do we create “bucket lists?”  Better yet, why do we create bucket lists and then stress out whether or not we complete the “bucket list.”  Isn’t that contradicting the idea of relaxation and living a stress-free life?  Bucket lists are meant to be fun and freeing while at the same time reaching exciting goals!

I recently had surgery and was forced to stay on the couch for 6 weeks.  This is impossible for me, just so you all know.  While I was sitting on my butt I decided to create my bucket list.  It is amazing how many things you want to accomplish when you can’t.  Now that I am all recovered I found that my bucket list fell by the wayside…until one evening a bucket list opportunity was upon me. That is how you should accomplish bucket list tasks – letting them fall into your lap and not stressing out about completing them.

Needless to say, I was overcome with feelings of excitement and freedom related to “completing” the task on my bucket list.  I won’t go into detail, but it wasn’t illegal or something terrible – it was exciting, but my bucket list is personal.  The big question is how does it feel to check that accomplishment off my bucket list?  It feels AMAZING!  It was a rush of ultimate power and control – over myself!  Nobody else was telling me what to do or whether I should be doing it.  I just did it – freely.

I want to leave this life knowing that I tried everything I ever wanted to, and it didn’t matter whether or not I succeeded or failed, but that I tried.  I don’t want to miss out on anything, therefore, I live in the moment.  Some people call it impulsive, but I call it living life.  Are you living your life?

Me sitting in a chair at High Voltage Tattoo in Hollywood (love this chair – Kat Von D is sitting in one similar – or this one – on the cover of her second book)! I got a tattoo there that day. The infinity sign on my right wrist. I am enjoying life and living freely!

Undies in a Bunch? Find Balance

Why is it that we live in a society with high levels of stress?  People are always on the go and running from one place to another.  I am just as guilty.  On the days I work at the office I find that am from one meeting to another with a latte or diet coke in hand (which does not help with stress as we all know).  How do we slow down?  Having high levels of stress is like constantly having your “undies in a bunch.”

Slowing down actually takes some practice and you have to be conscious about it.  When we are stressed out or rushing our nervous system is highly activated.  We have to work to maintain a BALANCED nervous system.  Just like anything else in life – you need balance.  Become aware of your “rushing” or stress.  Notice it, then ask yourself “what can I do right now, in this moment, to pull my undies out of a bunch?”  Then do it.  It can be as simple as deep breathing, or as big as getting up and taking a walk.  You will find that if your nervous system is balanced you will be more productive, relaxed, and focused.  When we are stressed out we tend to have “multiple” things on our mind, and we are not paying attention to what is happening in the now.  We are already thinking about the next appointment or task.  Balance yourself and relax.  Give your full attention to the here and now.

Being in a constant state of “having your undies in a bunch” is not pleasurable or enjoyable.  Take the time to slow down and live a balanced life.  If you find that you cannot un-bunch your undies you might want to switch to a thong – that way you can keep that unpleasant state of bunched up undies day and night.  You will not enjoy it and you will end up even more miserable and stressed out.

For the Love of Feetie Jammies

Over the past weekend I took some time for some much-needed rest and relaxation with the family.  I wanted to take in every last drop of summer before my children returned to school for yet another year.  During that time I realized that the simple parts of my life were absent and had been for a majority of the summer.  So what did I do about it?  Bought some FEETIE JAMMIES.

Yep.  You got it.  Those great pajamas with the full bodysuit, fuzzy bottoms and the zipper all the way up the front!  Not only were they great, but they were fun – I bought zebra print ones with ZEBRA heads as the feet!  I slipped into those and suddenly felt a rush of child-like energy!  Responsibilities?  What responsibilities?  I wanted to play in my feetie jammies!  I found myself releasing all the tension and negative energy that surrounded me.  My children giggled when they saw me and then asked if they could go put theirs on…of course I said yes!  It was a feetie jammie party!

Feetie jammies are not something you “outgrow.”  They sell them in the stores for adults, but many of us choose not to wear them.  Adults think it is all about what is “mature” and “appropriate” when we are all “grown up.”  Blah, blah blah, I say.  You cannot “outgrow” anything because it is always a part of you.  You may try to push it deep down in a hiding place inside your memory, but when it is triggered it comes rushing all the way back out of you – and at a stronger rate because you were repressing it.  Just enjoy those parts of you.  Honor them.  Don’t repress them.  Wear the feetie jammies with pride (and comfort).  Feel the energy of your playful inner child.  Let that child come out and play.  I bet you will find yourself to be a happier adult.

Dance on that Table!

Throughout our lives I worry that too many people suppress who they actually are for fear of “not fitting in.”  We are often afraid of being judged by others and because of that we miss out on many great adventures in our lives.  Those adventures may be something small or something big, but either way we are not experiencing them because of the FEAR of judgement.

So I am a table dancer.  Yep.  I am the person that jumps up on a table and dances if I love the song.  I go crazy.  I throw my hair, my arms, legs.  I take the moment in, and I am extremely carefree about it.  I will do this in a crowd full of people or by myself at home (I am also a mirror dancer – I totally rock at dancing and must witness it from time to time)!  Of course I hear the whispers in the crowd talking about my mad table dancing skills.  You know they are saying things like “she is so immature” or “she is just trying to get attention.”  So I pose the question:  am I attention seeker or the life of the party?  I always like to think I am the life of the party, but I don’t care if people think I am seeking attention.  I am not.  I am just living in the moment.  And you know what?  I bet those those people whom are judging me are silently wishing they had the guts to dance on the table too.  But they don’t – because they fear the judgement.

So my message today is simple – dance on that table like EVERYONE is watching and be sure to give them a great show!  Feel the freedom of life – dance on that table.  Take the risk.  Feel free.  Let the judgements of others roll off your body with the beat of the music.  Live in the moment and don’t miss out on anything life has to offer.

Non-conformity and Social Norms

I often wonder how we can become a more loving, caring and accepting society.  As I move through my life I run into more and more judgemental people, and often wonder to myself “why?”  Is it ignorance?  Their belief system?  Their values?  The way they were raised?

I like to live my life not caring about what other people think of me.  I like to push the limits on social norms what is “acceptable.”  I think back to my first job.  I worked in a retail clothing store, but not one a typical 16 year-old would work in (it was no Wet Seal or Forever 21).  I worked in a store that will remain nameless but let’s just say it targeted the older, professional female population.  I had gotten this job because my parents were friends with the manager, and she was willing to work with my busy high school activity schedule.  Anyone who shopped in this store will know that it was famous for “matching everything.”  So basically anyone that shopped there not only bought the red-squared printed shirt, but the matching earrings, necklace and socks. Additionally, if you saw someone dressed in an outfit like that walking down the street, you knew what store it came from.  You get the idea.  The dress code was pretty basic for the employees – dress clothing, dress shoes and no visible piercings or tattoos.  Seems easy to follow, right?  Something you should know is that this was around the time that nail polish took a risk (about 1995-997) and started creating your “not normal” colors – blue, orange, yellow, green, etc.  I, of course, felt that this was amazing and bought every color possible.  I matched my nail polish to my outfit each day.  Then it happened…”Nikki, that nail polish is not really “professional, and we don’t want our customers to stop shopping here.”  SAY WHAT?  I was young and my parents were still technically the boss of me, and they agreed with my manager.  I was just so angry.  Who decided that my nail polish wasn’t “professional?” It wasn’t in the dress code that I couldn’t wear funky colored nail polish.  So I pushed the envelope – yep – still wore it, and challenged the dress code.  I was probably pretty close to losing my job due to my “non-conformity.”  Then one day I was unpacking the boxes of stock items when guess what I found?  You got it – “unprofessional” colored nail polish.  Needless to say the disagreements about my nail polish stopped and I now got a DISCOUNT on fun nail polish.

Through my story today I want you to take two things away.  First, stop and think about how you are judging people on a daily basis.  Who are we to say what is right or wrong?  What people can wear or who people can love.  Secondly, feel the freedom of being non-judgemental.  Feel the freedom of life.  Take risks – whether they are small or big.  Go ahead – wear that funky nail polish and don’t worry or care about what others think!