Seven Magic Mountain, near Las Vegas.  Photos taken on Google Pixel 2

Seven Magic Mountain, near Las Vegas. Photos taken on Google Pixel 2

welcome

to the colorful journal of Marissa Berrini, creative director, traveler, artist, and curator living in Los Angeles. Launched back in 2010, as Bourbon and Goose, Marissa's blog serves to be an inspiration for those times we’re stuck in a rut and help expand our community to dive deeper beyond the eye candy and more into the soul all while discovering self-worth, love, being present in the moment and creating the life you were meant to live.

Love Letters to the Universe 02

Love Letters to the Universe 02

It's now week two of my journey with the Universe for love and presence. It's starting to really sink in that this is going to be more challenging than I initially thought. I tend to do that to myself. Put out these grandiose ideas and then once I declare them, I kind of freak out and immediately want to bail. But then there's a push and pull struggle occurring inside, like a tug-a-war scene from some Tough Mudder. Maybe it's the anxiety about my lack of writing skills. Newsflash: there will be errors, but last time I checked, I thought this journey wasn't about being perfect? So let's forget about all the grammar brewahaha and just get to this week's notes on love + presence.

So this week was a little off. Might have something to do with the upcoming Pluto transit or just the cold hard facts of a massive head cold that came out of nowhere to derail the week. Either way, it was filled with lessons on self-care.

January / Day 07 / Monday
Let's just get this out of the way early in the game: I am not a fan of Mondays. I've come to accept them, but argh, this particular Monday brought with it rain and the Golden Globes aftermath clean up on Santa Monica and Wilshire. (Trials and tribulations of living in LA) Needless to say but traffic was a bitch. It made me miss my typical Monday mumbo jumbo of "normal" traffic. But what I didn't know was that the Universe was going to flip the script on me. (Probably to make up Golden Globe Beverly Hills nonsense). My day was going to include a BIG surprise.

Right after the day's regular marketing meeting, I got a special visit from one of my favorite people and recent designer from my team at work, Rhema. Along with another past coworker, KK. It was a like a total hit of dopamine. I was on cloud nine. Kind of like Colin Hanks in Jumanji when he kept saying "so stoked" at the end of the movie. All the sudden, Monday was AMAZING (said in Oprah’s voice). I had a pep in my step, a huge grin ear-to-ear. I may have looked a little rough as I didn't dress up but damn it, I didn't care about that. I was too concern prancing around with people I dearly care about. A group of young women who are smart as hell, funny, kind, super creative and so much more. My heart felt like it was going to burst. At that moment I felt LOVE. Now this love was a mix of so many things that I had to stop to actually really feel it to decipher what was this love? I took my pause. Checked in and realized that it was a mix of hope for a new generation of women. An appreciation for all the challenges they have overcome. A dedication to be there for them if they ever need me. Friendship can be so many things, but in this case, it was one where they taught me the real value of friendship and how to be well-balanced in a world that tends to lean more into chaos.

The day was not over, as I left for the night my friend and designer, Idelia, surprised me with the most beautiful gifts, two of which were from her parents and the third was a gorgeous Tree of Life amethyst necklace she picked out because I'm always kissing my crystals at work. Idelia thinks it's hilarious which makes me laugh even more. I was so taken back by her and her parents' generosity for the beautiful batiks they made that I cried on the way home. I realized how fortunate I am to be surrounded by love. Such a gift to have these well-balanced women teaching me so much and honestly without them really knowing it.

Day 08 / Tuesday
Next up was Tuesday. As I hopped into the car to enter into the daily grind, I was already envisioning the imaginary memo on my desk that said: today will be BORING. Ugh, how was it that my ego mind was already taking over. It wasn't even 9 am yet. I told myself this is what I get for not doing my Kundalini exercises this morning and spending way too much time dicking around on Instagram. But clearly, my mind was already owning the day before my heart could catch up. Expectations were set to low and worst yet, I had a case of the grumps. By lunch, I was in desperate need of escaping the ball and chain of work. So I took a much-needed break to Westfield's Century City Mall to grab lunch at Sweetgreen. While making my typical sprint through the crowds of entertainment agents (cue Ari from Entourage), lawyers, and tourists, it dawned on me I was just future tripping again. Why all the hustle? Why let the mind take over? I had plenty of time to absorb my lunch as I ordered ahead. I stopped. Took a deep breath and decided I'd slow it down, and so this is what happened:

  1. I saw a pug wearing a denim vest. Yes, this is important. When do you ever see a pug IRL skipping along in a denim vest that would rival any 80s vintage pieces from Melrose Ave.

  2. Next, I saw a massive mural of unicorns that stated: "Unicorns are my spirit animal". Duh, I took a selfie. Thank you MeUndies.

  3. On the same mural, there were the most adorable cartoon drawings of sloths stating: Don't Worry, Be Happy. Might be small to you but this kind of made my day. Google it. Sloths are cute.

  4. Last but not least, while enjoying bites of my classic Sweetgreen kale salad, I noticed this insanely stylish woman with the most amazing jacket. I told myself if I see her again, I'll be sure to let her know. Wish granted and from there a whole experience transpired. Curious read more about it in my Instagram post here.

So in that small amount of time, I managed to flip the imaginary memo that the monkey mind gave me earlier to a whole new dream. One that didn't end with Tuesday sucked. Instead, my Tuesday was pretty fabulous.

Day 09 / Wednesday
Now if I could only say the same for Wednesday. Sadly, this day started with a major sneeze attack. Ugh, I was getting sick! This was possibly the worst timing as I had major plans for the rest of the week, specifically the weekend. I did my meetings, buckled down on tasks and then when lunch came, I booked it to Moon Juice for Immunity Tonic and Dr. Singha's Mustard Bath. I hadn't tried this bath product before and let me tell you. It's AMAZING. It's a mix of mustard seed and other herbs. Perfect for when you're on the verge of getting sick, muscle aches, and insomnia. It felt like a warm blanket. The perfect jolt back into health mode. I felt so much better. It was time to attend Pathworking with Naha. A must as it was all about Wheel of Fortune, one of my favorite cards and game shows. ;P

Day 10 / Thursday
Woke up with repeat mantras in my head: I am not sick. Must make it to the office. My health jolt took a backseat, and douche head cold took over. UGH, I was pissed, but as most "good" adults do, I put aside my body and marched my butt to the office with the attitude no one will know I'm sick. Insert Hahahah here. It was so obvious I was ill. The cat was out of the bag with my running nose and glassy eyes. I had a couple of important meetings and needed to pick up products for an upcoming photo shoot the next day. Looking back, I see how I was a complete jackass to self-love. So this day I failed miserably at love. Until it was time to crawl back into my car and pray that it got me home in one piece. Once home, I become a real couch potato and found my favorite lady, Angela Lansbury cruise Cabot Cove. As I was about to drift into sleep mode, my Pixel reminded me I had an appointment at the Transcendental Meditation Center for a much-needed check-in and group meditation. Damn it. My ego brain took over again and decided it was time to grab a Lyft to Los Feliz. Now as I exited the Lyft and walked over to the center, I pause to let a car drive into the lot. Pure luck but it was my friend Antonella! Love made an entrance again as it was a total fluke. Antonella and I had run into each other 2 years prior when we first signed up for TM after not seeing each other for 10 years! Well, pep in my step was back on, but sadly, my cold took over, and I was back home, and again to couch potato land.

Day 11 / Friday
Fridays are supposed to be fun but not for this girl. I was sick still. All my jumping around earlier in the week didn't benefit me. My body was SCREAMING for some self-love. The head cold was ruling the roost. To have any chance of doing the reiki workshop for the weekend, I had to sleep this damn cold away. I called in all the shots. I did TM, I took my elderberry syrup, I did another mustard bath. Nada worked. It was all about rest. Presence won and I surrendered.

Day 12 / Saturday
Woke up super early due to utter excitement for the Jikiden Reiki workshop I had signed up for earlier in the week. My head cold met me halfway, and I wasn't feeling like absolute shit. (Thank you Theraflu) I could make it to the workshop! So thankful I did because the group of women that attended this particular event was all amazing. I learned so much for them as well as my excellent teacher, Erin—an expander in so many ways. The rain that came that day was light and soft—almost cinematic in looks and feel. During the training, we had a lunch break. From there, I walked to Downtown Culver City and got a much-needed walkabout. I discovered a gigantic rainbow. (Not an actual rainbow in the sky but a movie prop. Again, the perks of living in LA) Had an interesting exchange of looks with a curious cat. Then stumbled upon a bird making a home in one crazy succulent. All solidifying the theme of the day: take it slow. I took time to also give gratitude to my body for the experience. It was a beautiful day. The energy I felt in my own body and while practicing on fellow students was pure love. It was an exchange that required presence. Both were achieved today.

Day 13 / Sunday
It's hard to wrap up the week as it felt so short due to the battle with the head cold. Today I was 90% back to my usual self. I credit this to Theraflu and reiki. I had my day 2 of the Jikiden workshop. It was magical and breathtaking at the same time. I'm excited to start practicing this style of reiki moving forward. I felt so comfortable learning with my fellow classmates. My teacher provided insights and a structure that allowed us to be curious, ask questions, share insights from our practice sessions. An environment that I learn best in. Once I was home, I immediately started practicing on Buju as he's had some issues in the last couple of months. This little session with him I will cherish forever and will continue to do. I feel like no matter what occurs, he will at least know that I love him dearly.

This week was not typical by any means. It was rough as getting sick wasn't part of the plan. My body reminded me who's in control and why it's so important to keep my health as priority #1. As my previous mentor used to say, Health is Wealth, and after this week, I agree 110%.

Photo taken on Google Pixel 3, edited in A Color Story

Love Letters the Universe 03

Love Letters the Universe 03

Love Letters to the Universe 01

Love Letters to the Universe 01