Ashley's photo shoot was meant to be a good experience and to give a little boost to her self esteem. It is something she has been wanting for a long time. We decided since she was doing so well in summer school we would throw her a little bone. Ashley and I really hadn't taken a professional picture together in years so I thought it would be nice. I think at some point she started to feel a little uncomfortable in front of the camera and it didn't help for me to comment on that. I was only trying to help. It really upset her and she started flipping out on me out of frustration and embarrassment. I have just learned that it is never good to engage in that type of behavior. I have learned to keep my mouth shut and walk away before it escalates into something bigger. I've learned to pick my battles and there is a time and place for everything. I find when I do that she feels more guilty about the way she behaved and realizes how much she was out of line and is more apologetic and tries harder to control herself. I talked to her about the situation later when we weren't in a public place and explained how she could have handled things better and how I didn't appreciate the way she spoke to me. She did apologize. I was so embarrassed when the photographer was showing Ashley the pictures he took and all she could say was that she hated all of them. I felt like she was insulting his work and sounded like a little brat. By the time the photographer was ready for the mother/daughter picture I just wasn't feeling the warm and fuzzy bonding moment between us that I should have. Any thoughts of giving her the car were diminishing quickly. I'm not so sure now.
A lot of people have questions and opinions about my relationship with Danielle. We met right before the taping of the show. I learned right away that Danielle had a very strong personality. I can pretty much get along with anybody. In fact, I tend to like all people when I first meet them. I feel like I am really accepting of people. My sister-in-law Dina went out with Danielle when she first met her and from that moment there was a clash in personality. Not everyone gets along with everybody. She just wasn't Dina's cup of tea. I think Danielle was just trying hard to fit in but my sister-in-laws get very cautious of people that try to come on so strong so fast and I think they were a few other concerns as well. Danielle needed money fast, so I think there was some concern that she would try to con me for some, or use me for her benefit in some way. I think the rejection of my family angered Danielle more. I was honest to Danielle about the way they felt about her so she would just back off a little and forget trying to pursue their friendship. They had no interest in being her friend. Danielle seemed to treat me nice so I had no reason not to like her, but there was something about her that waved a red flag to everyone else in the family and I was warned MANY times not to trust her or be her friend. I knew we were all doing a show together so I wanted to make it work and for everyone to get along. It caused increasing problems within the family. There was a short time during filming where Caroline and Dina became very upset with me for continuing my friendship with her and Dina and I were battling it out about that and other things, but I NEVER wanted to make that public on the show, because I know that it always blows over quickly and I didn't think it was appropriate to air. There were times when I begged Danielle not to put me in an uncomfortable situation in front of the cameras by talking about Dina, but she chose to do so anyway. I warned her, if my husband saw that, it would probably be the end of our friendship. It would upset him and the family and I would have to choose my husbands feelings and wishes first. I won't let ANY friendship cause a rift between my husband and I. She seemed to respect that. During this taping there were numerous friends and people approaching my family about RECENT stories of Danielle that had NOTHING to do with the book. The book was a WHOLE other story. It was making everyone uncomfortable but it is not like me to cut someone out of my life unless they directly try to hurt me.
I was tired of fighting everyone's battles for them as I had ALWAYS done in the past, which always got me in trouble and made ME the bad guy while the other person came off smelling like roses. I have learned to let people fight their own battles as I choose to fight my own as well, so I continued my friendship with Danielle despite the concerns of others. I always give people the benefit of the doubt. ALWAYS! Danielle often told me from her "many" sources she CLAIMED to have about rumors she had heard about Dina. We discussed these rumors and I trusted that she would NOT repeat them on camera. She told me she wouldn't go there and that she was "THE VAULT." I hope she stays true to her word. There were things I understood about how Danielle felt and things I understood how my family felt. I always try to look at both sides of every situation and I think that is what gets me in trouble sometimes. People think I am either taking the other person's side and get upset with me when I try to explain the other person's point of view or they think I'm agreeing with them and on THEIR side because I can see THEIR point of view. I simply just see both sides. I just wanted PEACE! It's a NO WIN situation. Being in the middle SUCKS! I tend to always try to see the good in everybody and give everybody a chance. I don't judge people by their past...I look at who they are today. I don't worry about my reputation. My family can be tough sometimes, but I know they have my best interest at heart and mean well. My family told me that if you hang out with trash you will start to stink and that once I did something to piss Danielle off she would turn on me and be very calculating and try to hurt me. She is already getting increasingly upset with me from what she has heard me saying on the show, all of which I TOLD her I said long ago . Sometimes you're cut off before you can finish a sentence explaining why you said what you said. I never had ANY intentions of hurting her; I stuck by her when nobody else would give her a chance. I'm curious to see if my sister-in-laws were right about her. Time will tell.
Now to answer some viewer questions...
My husband and I met in Chicago the summer of 1996 at a trade show. I was modeling and he was a buyer and we were introduced by the girl I was working with that knew him. It was an instant connection. We became the best of friends shortly after and it led to years of a long distance relationship before we made the big move the summer of 2001. Although it was hard to leave my family and friends, whom I am VERY close with, it was the best move I ever made. Life is good!
For those of you who think I don't have a back bone... TRUST me, I DO! EVERYone has their breaking point and although I am a nice person, when pushed too far...the Taurus bull in me will come out and you better watch out for the horns because I WILL charge. LOL! I just have a VERY high tolerance for people and situations. It takes a WHOLE lot to get me angry but when I do...YIKES! So STOP saying I'm a push over. I just pick and choose my battles. That's all! I'm not a hothead.
The party favors at my son's birthday party were from Party City. I filled them with candy, playdoh, bubbles and a variety of the cheap little toys kids like to play with.
I wear Lancome's lipliner in Ideal or Amandelle. My lipstick is Lancomes, Bisque, Beige Cashmere or rose crystal. My lip gloss is NARS Turkish delight or Orgasm.
The maroon hooded sweatshirt I wore while Danielle explained her book to me is by Lauren Moshi.
Thank you all for all of your support and your well wishes for me and my family and the upcoming birth of our son, Nicholas this Thursday, June 11th! We are so excited!
I'm sorry I can't remember all of your questions right now but I will review them again and answer them in the next blog. Thank you so much for your support. You all have been so great through this whole experience. XXOO! Take care!