"Never is life so exciting
as at the beginning of a journey"
- A Philosopher (Not me!)
I was born 72 years ago this May 2015 in Long Beach, California. I can't believe I'm this old! I had the great gift of being part of a wonderful family — my older brother Jack and my dear grandmother Mirtle. We all loved each other (even though, half the time, my brother wanted to kill me)
I was a kid who loved school, loved learning, being with friends, drawing, family "sat" nights — life for me was magical — I only saw the best of it and then went on to college. My plan was to be a great artist, designer, creator, but like life is, I went left instead of right. I met Nina Blanchard and started my modeling career which took me to 20th Century Fox studios to study acting on the lot. Wow! The truth is — I was terrified every day. The incredible part was, I became a working actor — TV series, commercials, movies, big and small roles and I hated it — still terrified. Then one day I went on a commercial audition for Light Day Oval Pads and met Frank Attardi (the advertising exec) and a new chapter began. A passionate love affair, a trust, a partnership.
Eventually I left California to begin a new life in New York City with Frank, a new job in daytime television, wonderful new friends, and more opportunities. A talk show "Attitudes" was created, there were awards, appearances, and national campaigns for Alzheimers and Osteoporosis. I had two books published and a personal commitment working for Heartshare Charities.
Life was thrilling, exciting, and the best was Frank. I want to tell you the story of the moment I knew he was my soulmate. It was a Sunday morning — we were driving back to the city and he saw a Dunkin' Donuts and said "Would you like a donut?". Dumbfounded, I said yes! We pulled in, he ordered two glazed donuts and when we finished, he said "Would you like another?". There it was, the quintessential "moment" I knew I would marry this man. This was my Frank, my friend, my love. We were married over 20 years and in September of 2004 I lost both him and my beautiful mother. It is so difficult,, isn't it? Two of the most important people in my life left me, what followed was sadness, depression, regret. We all have known this — cried over this — been stopped by this. I needed to understand, I believed our home in Connecticut was the place to heal and do the one thing that would save me — work.
This special place — an 18th Century homestead in rural Connecticut was re-erected from 2 homes circa 1710 and 1740 we had moved to land we owned. It was an unbelievable journey — hard work — pride, friendship with new neighbors, workmen, and townspeople. We were home. This is the legacy he left me, it's where I live and prosper, remember, and love. I have always shared my life with animals — my babies — my shitzus Mabel and Maude, Shang, Charlie, Chin Chin, Mo, and of course BB and CC — my family. Life is so complete with their energy, joy and love as well as that of my close friends and family. Last year I lost an important part of this family, my publicist, partner, and close friend Vivien Stern died. Again — shock and sadness. Again, it was the way back to work — and new friends. I have learned that happiness comes from the littles of things — fresh vegetables from the garden — cooking fun new recipes with friends — great shows on Netflix — laughter, in large doses — quiet times with yourself — inspiring books, and great (believe me when I say this) friends like you. So now — Today is The Day we start a new journey, whatever it may be.