Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Deep Breath...

Change.  I don't do well with major change, it takes alot for me to assimilate major change.  This is major change.  Ehh, I'm repeating myself.

Tonight, I may actually get a caffeine buzz.  No, not really.  I am going to need to make alittle more coffee, though.  It's going to take me quite awhile to get this all figured out.  No early shift tomorrow, so I can stay up and play with this. 

I've opened a journal on blogger: 

http://leigh-mythoughtshonestly.blogspot.com/    Whew, that's alot different than what I'm used to typing.  I'll have to practice.  Stop on by and watch the comedy as I learn how to use the new format!  Oh, and I think I'm going to use my g-mail addy for e-mails now.  It's l.sildrgnfly@gmail.com.   I've got to figure out how to move my address book over there, too.

I'm not sure whether to combine the two journals or keep them seperate.  I've got alot to say in "Walking" yet.  And kind of feel like it needs to be separate from the general chitchat of things.  I don't know.

I started a folder for J-Landers new blog addresses in favorites.  I imagine there's a better way to do this, but I'll have to figure that out later. 

I have questions-lots of questions:

I have a photo of Son and me in e-mail, can I add that to blogger?  How?

And wouldn't you know it, I'm having a CRS moment, can't remember any of the others right now. 

With Mercury in retrograde, I'll need to do and re-do things a couple times to get the hang of everything.  That and the fact that I'm like a 1st grader in computer.  Hell, 1st graders may know more than I do. 

Well, I seem to be rambling out of control, so I'm going back to blogger and try to see what I can find to do!

                                              ~Thanks For Stopping By~ 


Monday, September 22, 2008

As Summer Fades....

With but a few hours left of summer, I've been reflecting, thinking of what my life consists of and the things I'm still looking for.  And I do feel blessed. 

I paused on the side of the road last night, pulling over to get out of the car for a better view of the glory I had been glimpsing in my rearview mirror. 

As a tribute to the fading season, Mother Nature brought out her full selection of watercolors to paint the sunset.  One of those breathtaking sights-all the pastels of her pallette.  Streaks of color in the wisps of clouds, layers of lavendars, blues, pinks, oranges, and every shade in between.  It's times like these that the worries of the world take a back seat to the magnificence of her glory.  As I watched the changes, subtle in their progress, a knowing came that this is....  change just is.... one season to the next, the sun and moon inching ever, across the sky as time moves continuously forward. 

I wasn't ready to give up on summer, wasn't ready to move forward myself.  I've been in a kind of limbo, hoping for time to just pause long enough to catch up.  Which, of course, it doesn't-for anyone. 

So, my goal today(aside from the everyday crap) is to begin to move forward, to set my path, plan my journey forward.  Just take today-which isn't really summer or fall, to just be in the in-between.  Pause and count my blessings, my harvest of my life.  To honor the balance of light and dark, be thankful for the light, and learn and accept the lessons of the dark time of the year.   It all has a purpose.  The light for outward growth, the dark for inner growth.  As each season progresses, our life moves forward and our primary responsiblilty in it is to grow, in knowledge and love.   

So, on this in-between day, blessings to all.

                         ~Thanks For Stopping By~


Tuesday, September 9, 2008

I was thinking.....

About what?  Well, something to write about.  I'm drawing blanks.  My life is just pretty quiet right now.  And the truth is that I miss writing.  But I don't really have anything to write about.

I could talk about the weather.  Fall seems to have arrived with a vengence.  Damn it!  I'm not ready!  Don't get me wrong, I love fall, in it's proper time and place.  Which isn't yet.  The way it looks right now, last Tuesday was the last time for swimming at the lake.  I still go to walk the beach, and go wading.  Still sit at a picnic table to listen to the waves and just unwind.  I just wasn't done yet.

I could talk about my son.  I IM'd with him for a bit this morning.  He's doing okay.  Didn't get all the classes he wanted, but that's what you get when you wait till the last minute to register-told ya so, Son.  

I could talk about work.  Hours are still down and that's about all I can say about that.  There aren't any new clients coming up.

I could talk about how I just blew off the whole day-till it was time to go to work for 3 hours late this afternoon.  I stayed in my nightgown till 2:30pm, I played Mahjong online, I napped, I tried to finish the novel I'm reading, but fell short by about 35 pages, maybe I'll accomplish that before I go to sleep. 

See?  There's just not much to talk about.  I did make an attempt at the 100 things-have about 37.  I'll keep thinking about it.  And of something interesting to write about.

So from my uneventful quiet life...

                                   ~Thanks For Stopping By~

Monday, September 1, 2008

Well, I'm still callin' it summer!

  Labor Day Weekend is done!  Yay!  But I'm not giving up on summer yet.  I know-summer isn't over till the Equinox on the 22nd.  But the summer season's done, the kids go back to school tomorrow.   And things go back to the quiet normal of the off season.  Yes, the tourists bring a big portion of our economy, but they also bring selfish attitudes, hazardous "city driving" ways, and drop their trash without a second thought.  Okay, enough, I could rant a whole lot about this, but I'm not going to subject you to that. 

  Now, I can go to the beach and relax(more).  There will still be some warm days for swimming, and walking the paths and the beach. Today was in the mid 80's and tomorrow's supposed to be 90 and humid.

  I just love watching the subtle changes from one season to the next, though.  I noticed there are already some of the early maples starting to change color up north of here.  The ferns are starting to die back.  They can't handle the cold nights, and we've already had a couple that were really close to 32 degrees.  Tonight I watched a flock of geese fly over the lake as they start to make their way to their winter homes( I think).  They kind of broke formation and did some air-acrobatics, which was pretty cool.  You can hear them long after you lose sight of them. 

  I haven't watched or read much of the news, but heard that Gustav wasn't as bad as predicted and hit west of New Orleans( I'm relieved).  And now there's another one to worry about, but I don't remember the name or what the path is.  I'll need to catch up with things in the morning.  I don't really watch much TV, the most I see is usually at client's homes, that's where I get my news and weather.  I used to have one on all the time, just for the noise, but now I'd rather have music on. 

  I was thinking of doing one of those "100 things about me" meme's, but first I've got to do it on paper and see if I can think of 100 things.  If I do, I'll post it, then figure out how to get it into the sidebar.  Do I do that like doing the link-thing?   Maybe I should send myself to "computer school" in my help and support windowsand figure out how to use this thing better! 

  Okay, rambling again....

                                               ~Thanks For Stopping By~

Monday, August 25, 2008

The Alphabet Survey

I saw this meme at Dusty Pages that Lori did yesterday.  Thought I'd give it a whirl. 

A is for age:  52

B is for beer of choice:  Ice cold Michelob, in a long neck bottle.

C is for your career right now:  Home health aide

D is for your dog's name:  We rent, only fish-Kirby the 3rd

E is for an essential item you use every day:  My coffeemaker

F is for favorite TV show at the moment:  I don't really watch much.  The local weather forecast, I guess.

G is for favorite game:  To play-pool.  To watch-football.

H is for hometown:  Roscommon

I is for instruments you play:  A little piano-very little.

J is for favorite juice:  Tomato

K is for whose butt you'd like to kick:  No one right now.

L is for the last restaurant you ate at:  The TeePee about 4 months ago.

M is for marriage:  Nope, once was enough.

N is for number of piercings:  7- 4 in left ear, 3 in right.

O is for overnight hospital stay:  Dec. 1986.  Had my gallbladder and its 71(yes the surgeon counted them) stones removed.

P is for people you were with today:  Bro and clients.

Q is for what you do with your quiet time:  Read and spend time online.

R is for biggest regret:  That I didn't go to college.

S is for status:  Single. Or widowed, or middle aged, or female, or employed, or all of the above.

T is for time you woke up today:  I slept in till 6:30.

U is for if you are unique:  Why, certainly.

V is for vegetables you love:  It's easier to list the ones I don't like-peppers and lima beans.

W is for worst habit you have:  Procrastination.

X is for Xrays you've had:  Right knee, head, back, left foot, left wrist, ribs, right big toe, right elbow, left ankle, fingers on right hand.  Okay, maybe I'm a clutz.

Y is for yummy food you had today:  Homemade burger with dill pickles.

Z is for zodiac sign:  Libra

Geez, I've had a lot of xrays.  But in my defense, there were only 3 broken bones discovered in all those xrays.  2 in my back from the car accident, and the right big toe, that I dropped the center leaf from the dining room table on.  I think the doctors just liked looking at my bones. ;-)  Now, if you want to count stitches, I've had 146 in my head, 3 in right index finger, 7 in my right leg, 4 in the broken big toe and 14 staples for the gallbladder. 

It was a beautiful day, today, not too hot, NACITS.  But they're predicting frost here for tonight.  NOOOOOO...... It's too early for that.  I'm not done with summer yet!  ::sigh::

Well, I'm rambling now, so I'm signing off.  As Always.........

                                      ~Thanks For Stopping By~


Had to go back and fix the link!  OOPS

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Late Night Ramblings

Disclaimer:  Sleep deprived person just writing off the top of her head. 

Content may cause confusion, do not drive or operate heavy machinery while consuming this product. 

No refunds or exchanges. 

Not responsible for lost or stolen items.

Enter at your own risk!

There, I think that about covers it.  ::sigh::  :)  I am tired, I had a midnight shift last night, only a 2 hour nap today, and should be in bed instead of  writing here.  But this is a special occasion!

Happy 5th Anniversary to J-Land!!!

I meant to take the time to write a carefully thought out entry, wax poetic on everything this community means to me, get all philosphical, but as the days and hours slipped by, no entry materialized.  This may be all for the better, we'll just see what happens.

About 15 months ago, I discovered blogs.  I was very new to computer use, had never heard of journaling online.  I was poking around on AIM and clicked onto the blogs link, and that was all she wrote.  Okay, let me rephrase that, that's when she decided to write-online. 

Playing around with the different styles, colors, fonts, and then typing my feelings into my private blog.  I read other journals, not brave enough to leave a comment, but enjoying reading about the lives of others from across the country and overseas.  Oh, I wanted to comment, had clever comments on the tip of my tongue.  I was an outsider, a "lurker".  This was obviously a community where folks knew each other well, cared about each other. 

It took time for me to get up the courage to comment that first time.  And without going back in the archives, I can't even remember the first one.  But then, I got a couple e-mails from writers I had commented to.  I had taken the first steps into J-Land.  "Did I have a journal, could I leave the link?" 

Hmm.... I started to think about writing publicly.  But my life's pretty simple, kinda boring, what would I write about?  Finally, I screwed up my courage, set up a public journal, typed my first entry and hit Save. 

And she's still writing!  Over this last year, I've met some wonderful friends, learned about life in other corners of the world, and in doing so expanded mine.  I've discovered that I like to write.  I may never be one of the great writers here, but so what? 

When I sit down in front of my computer screen, I feel like I'm writing letters to my friends, baring my soul, sharing something of myself, and learning more about that same self.  I hope to continue to do just that for many years to come.

So, whether you've been here 5 years or 5 minutes, Happy Anniversary to us all!

I can't believe it's almost the end of summer already.  It's just gone by so fast.  I'm not ready to give up the beach and going barefoot yet, so I guess I'd better get busy and enjoy what's left, huh? 

Things have been pretty quiet around here lately.  Potsey's moved out for now.  The house stays cleaner, the grocery bill's gone down and I get to park closer to the house without someone blocking my car in!  Yay!!

The friend that bought all those necklaces at the beginning of the summer came up with the idea of having a jewelry party featuring my creations!  Just in time for holiday shopping.  Maybe combine it with a Pampered Chef party, then we'd get some goodies to eat, too.  I've been working on some designs and found some unique handmade beads to use.  It's all pretty exciting!  I'm really enjoying the process. 

My work hours are still down, except for an occassional midnight shift.  But that gives me some time to fit in some more summer fun before it all fades into fall. 

Well, if I'm going to get this Anniversary entry posted by midnight, I've got to go for now.  Besides, I need some sleep!  :-O (that's a yawn)

                              ~Thanks For Stopping By~


Thursday, July 31, 2008

Tidbits, odds and ends-a meme

Just like the title says.  Dawn did this meme yesterday.  It's got questions you don't normally see in a meme, so I thought it'd be fun.

1. My Uncle once- told me that my freckles were rust spots from too much swimming.  I was young enough to believe him.  After that he always called me Rusty.

2. Never in my life-bungee jump or skydive.  Only fools and birdsh** fall out of the sky.

3. When I was 5- I had a pixie cut and a curly perm-before they were in style.

4. High School was- In town, so I spent my lunch money at the pool hall.  :)

5. I will never forget losing- My virginity, with the younger brother of the guy I had a huge crush on.

6. I once met-No one famous-ever.

7. There's this person I know who-Had his nipples pierced!  Really!

8. Once at a bar-I met my husband.  He said, "if you'd quit fu**ing with that Pacman game, we could go dance."  What a romantic he was.

9. By noon I'm usually-done with my second pot of coffee, and ready to move on to something cold.  Like Iced Coffee!

10. Last night-I was nice to the backyard neighbor.  I know, I'm so proud.

11. If I only had- Some spaghetti, my tummy would be really happy right now. 

12. Next time I go to church- I'll be out in nature.

13. What worries me most- my memory problems, I'm very forgetful, absentminded....

14. When I turn my head left, I see-The toaster-hmm, peanut butter toast sounds good!

15. When I turn my head right, I see-out the kitchen window.

16. You know I'm lying when-I say I'd like to bungee jump.

17. What I miss most about the eighties-my cute little cabin in Grayling.  The neatest place I ever lived.

18. If I were a character in Shakespeare, I'd be-embarrassed because I wouldn't know my lines.  I never read much Shakespeare.

19. By this time next year-It'll be July 31st, 2009

20. A better name forme would be-Hmm.. never really thought about this.

21. I have a hard time understanding-computers, it's the memory thing.

22. If I ever go back to school-I'd major in Art.

23. You know I like you if-I try to tell you my secrets.  This must mean I like you-look at all the secrets I'm telling.

24. If I ever won an award, the first person I'd thank would be-all my friends and fans.....

25. Take my advice, never-put Italian dressing in your coffee.  It was right next to the creamer, it was dark, and I wasn't awake yet.

26. My ideal breakfast is-Cold Pizza.

27. A song I love, but do not have, is-Stairway to Heaven.

28. If you visit my hometown, I suggest-we just go to the lake.  They have a Dairy Queen near the State Park!

29. Why won't people-just admit coffee's good for you!

30. If you spend the night at my house-We'll stay up late, have a bonfire, burn some hotdogs and marshmellows.  Yum!

31. I'd stop my wedding for-waking up from the weird dream.  I don't see any more weddings for me. ::phew::

32. The world could do without-Liver and Onions.  My clients had that for dinner tonight. ;-p

33. I'd rather lick the belly of a cockroach than-bungee jump, or get married, or eat liver and onions.

34. My favorite blonde is-????

35. Paper clips are more useful than-Bookmarks.  They keep falling out.

36. If I do anything well, it's-Listen.

    I really liked this one.  Probably some things that could be considered TMI, but.....;)~  You did notice the mood at the top, right?  That and I'm hungry, still thinking about that peanut butter toast.

   Tomorrow is my 1 year blog-iversary.  The date on my first entry actually says August 2nd, I just type really slow.  I never thought I could think of enough things to say, to keep this going.  But I am ~So Glad~ I did.  I've met some wonderful friends here.

                                         ~Thanks For Stopping By~   

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Life's A Beach...

                          I think I've invented a new swimming exercise! 

   I had the whole day off yesterday.  I didn't want to say anything and jinx it, so I just kept it to myself.

  In the afternoon, I packed up to go to the lake.  I looked in the backseat and discovered that my air mattress was flat. ::sigh::  I really enjoy just paddling out and floating around till the waves bring me back to shore.  I have one of those little patch kits, but decided to save time and just go get another one.  The dollar store didn't have any left, but they did have one of those blow up rings.  Okay, that'll work-$4.00.  I got out there, deposited my stuff on the beach, and headed into the water.  What fun!  Unlike the air mattress, I could paddle around with my arms and legs.  Just kind of cruised all over the place, out into waters over my head, and back to the shallows where I could watch the minnows.  I'll bet I spent 3 hours in the water. 

   And Boy Am I Sore Today!  I have apparently found several muscles in both my arms and legs that I haven't used much lately.  I could hardly move this morning.  You know those little old ladies that just look like it hurts to walk?  Well, that's the way I was walking when I got up this morning.  Deep breath, coffee, ibuprofen and a HOT shower allowed me to make it out the door to my first client.  By 10am, I'd loosened up enough to walk without wincing.  ::grateful sigh::  I'm at the point now that it's down to a dull ache.  And glutton for punishment, I'm going out to the lake again tomorrow afternoon before my 4pm client!  I'll just float more than paddle.

   I was supposed to have this afternoon off, too.  So I decided to do something domestic.  I picked defrosting the freezer. (Are you nuts?)  I got out the coolers, emptied the freezer, started removing the built up ice, singing along to the radio cranked up really loud and didn't hear the phone ring.  I did manage to hear the beep that I had a voicemail between songs.  Yep, you guessed it, the office.  One of the girls had a fender bender on the way to a client and couldn't get there.  Could I cover?  Like, in 15 minutes?  Sure, but I'm going to be late.  So, everything went back in the freezer and I have to finish it in the morning.  Yuck.  I just wanted to get it all done.  The extra hours will be nice, and I did my good deed for the day.  "Oh, and don't call me for any extra shifts tomorrow.  I have to defrost the freezer."  ;-)~    

                                     ~Thanks For Stopping By~


Sunday, July 27, 2008

Silver Linings

    As every dark cloud has them, the objective is to see past the gloom to that silver lining. 

    On the drive from home to the clients home on Lake Huron(about 70 miles), I was simply observing the scenery going by when it hit me.  There are a few silver linings to the dark clouds that seemed to smother  my weekend.

    First, when I got off the expressway to head across the state, I glanced over at a gas station to check prices-$3.95!  That's the first time I've seen it under $4.00 in weeks-meaning that the trips to this client just got a little bit cheaper.  Yay!

    I'd driven past several homes that had vegetable gardens visible from the road.  Fenced in to keep the deer out, they were green and lush, obviously well cared for.  They brought back memories of the gardens I grew every summer in Ohio.  I smiled.  There were farms with acres and acres of corn, wheat and soybeans.  Some huge dark blue silos at one farm, horses and cows just going about their business as cars go whizzing by.  There was a little roadside park with a river down in a gulley.  I didn't know they still existed(the parks).  There was this little cafe-closed now for who knows how many years, but the sign is still there.  A big 55 with the words double nickel written down the outside edges.  Clever name-as the highway it's on is M-55.  There were some old abandoned roadside vegetable stands-one, Sam's corn, looked like a good wind would knock it ovder.  Garage and yard sale signs populated several intersections, and a cute little sign advertising "The Little Red Craft Shack stands on tall posts, pointing the way.  I saw Sarah's Bloomers and drove through Reno(township),  I passed The Green Turtle, not "a" green turtle, but a lounge. 

    Just a glimpse of the sights along your average Michigan highway.  So familiar, yet so individual.  Oh and one more little silver lining?  I was traveling east so the setting sun was behind me and not shining in my eyes.  B-)  this is a sunglasses smiley! 

   I'm glad the weekend is behind me.  Now I can concentrate on other things, but I wrote this entry on Friday night and just wanted to share my observations on life, from the weekend that had all the dark clouds.  (actually it's been pretty sunny and not too hot!)

                                  ~Thanks For Stopping By~

And the winner is....

Canoe #01-Steve Lajoie and Andy Triebold. 

At approximately 11:09:06am.  The announcer on the radio said it's one of the top five finish times of the 61 marathons raced.  The second place canoe should be arriving at the finish line in about 5 minutes, while I'm writing this.  The team I'm rooting for is canoe #14, in 4th place, about 15 minutes behind the second place team and 2 minutes behind 3rd place.  I bet they're paddling their tired butts off. 

Since I can't be there, I'm listening to it on the radio, at least the country music has stopped...they're interviewing one of the winners. 

I have another entry ready to go, but had to take a nap and will get it posted this afternoon or evening.  Work is interfering with my online time...::giggles::...

I did get some rough drafts for entries started.  There's not a whole lot to do on midnights, so I read and write.  And last night, I had my little portable radio on, to catch the updates on the race.  I actually toyed with the notion of driving up to one of the dams that they portage and watching for an hour or so(only about 20 miles from where I was working) but I was so tired this morning and chose to be logical and responsible and came home to nap.(grumbles) 

Well, the 2nd and 3rd place teams have finished, and canoe #14 is due any minute.  I've got to go get ready for work.  I'll be back later...

                                       ~Thanks For Stopping By~

Friday, July 25, 2008

One of those days(night actually)...

     I just haven't felt much like writing lately.  I couldn't think of something to say that wasn't depressing or boring.  Or that wouldn't sound like I was whining.  Which is exactly what I feel like doing right now!  Before this entry is over, I may actually whine-just to get it out there!

    A few entries back I mentioned the backyard neighbor that just drives me to violent thoughts of her demise.  Well, this seems like a good time to discuss her, as she came over to visit last evening and I didn't have the chance to escape to my room before she walked in the door.  She's the type that doesn't hesitate to tell you how you should live your life, because this is how she does it, has seen it on TV, or heard it from her friend the "guru of life-screw anyone who doesn't want you to tell them how to live, tell them anyway!".  I know she means well, but honestly, her life is more screwed up than mine.  Walk a mile in her shoes?  Nah, then I'd have to wipe my memory banks or go slowly insane. 

    Anyway, I was sitting at the kitchen table with Bro, discussing some things that need to be done and what my schedule is for the weekend.  This is the weekend I was supposed to have off to go to the Canoe Marathon, which I'll explain more about later.  I had gotten over the fact that I had been scheduled to work, decided to make the most of the time I did have to go and see at least part of the race.  Then on Wed. I got a phone call from work, they need me to work a couple midnight shifts on Friday and Saturday nights.  Good-bye race, entirely.  I need the hours and money right now, and there would be the issue of my having refused work, if I have to file for part-time unemployment. ::sigh::  So, I'm working....

    Sorry got off track there.  I see Ms. Busybody come walking through the yard, and can't just get up in the middle of a sentence and run to my bedroom to hide.  So, I'm stuck at the table discussing the fact that I drink too much coffee at night and that's why she always sees my light on at night and early in the morning....NO, it's because I only sleep about 5-6 hours a night, I get up early to get ready for early work shifts, and leave my coffee alone or DIE!  And what are you doing up so late and early, if sleeping 9 hours is what you deem the proper way for ME to live?  The conversation moved on and she said she had never seen a picture of my husband.  So I dug some photos out.  In one from near the end of his life, she made the comment that-it looked like I must have loved him very much....well, by that time, no.  By that time I was burned out, depressed, and emotionally abused.  She said, "Well, he was sick, I'm sure he couldn't help it."  No, he was just miserable and figured I shouldn't be left out of the fun!  It was all I could do not to throw the stack of photos in the air and run screaming from the room. 

    Then she proceeded to tell me how to go about losing weight, and that the way "she does it, is the only way".  From what she described, she starves herself-lives on SlimFast and toast.  Earlier she had made the comment that she felt tired all the time and needed to mention it to her doctor.  Well, I made the suggestion that maybe she wasn't getting enough nourishment from the way she was eating and that's why she felt tired.  Oh no, it has to be more than that.  Okay, sure, you go run to the doctor and see what he says.....

    She suggested that we walk together, as it's such good exercise.  Well thanks, but I walk and swim at the State Park 4 or 5 times a week.  Yes, but you should walk more than that, I'll go with you.   ARGHHH!! NO!!!  But then, I got the thought that it might be even more beneficial, as I'd be walking as fast as possible, just to get away from her "advice".  I banished that thought and got up to get things picked to go to bed.  Good night, you're safe from my wicked thoughts of murder for one more night!

    Okay, more information about the Canoe Marathon I was talking about.  It's a canoe race that lasts 14 to 19 hours.  It's 120 miles from the start in Grayling, MI to Oscoda, MI on the Lake Huron shore.  They begin the race at 9pm and race all night.  They have to portage hydro-electric dams, paddle through the dark for most of the race, although they do have a little light on the front of their canoes.  There are viewing points at many of the bridges that cross the river, and following the race to the finish is an eventcalled "Chase the Race".  You pack the car with snacks, coffee, warm clothes, cool clothes, flashlights, and whatever else you might need.  You drive from bridge to bridge and wait for the paddlers to pass under, spending the night driving, and cheering these amazing atheletes on.  The youngest participants are 15 years old this year, and the oldest is 83.  Yes, you read that right, 83 years old.  He's participated in 36 of the 61 marathons that have been held. 

    Anyways,  here's the website, check it out, this is an amazing race, www.ausablecanoemarathon.org

    Since the last time I posted, I've cried, pouted, moped, and just generally been miserable.  I've had enough of that and have decided to make some changes-serious changes-in my life.  I'm working on a new journal project to share with you.  I'll have been writing here one year on August 1st,(technically, I started the entry on the 1st) and in going back to read my first entry, I see that I've let this stray from what I had originally intended.  The changes will help get me back on track here.  I'm off to work on that new project, so as always....

                                    ~Thanks For Stopping By~ 

Friday, June 27, 2008

Some Clarification.

   Yesterday's entry was my frustration screaming out.  And at this time, I'd like to add some clarification, some insights about why I feel this way.  For me, now, my life is supposed to be about finally being able to live a life.  By that statement, I mean actually being able to do things.  Taking a day or a few, alittle money and having a fun experience.  I can't believe how tongue tied I am, right now.  Let's try again.

   I am so very grateful for my life, I have a career that is useful, making a difference in the lives of the elderly and disabled, that supports me.  I enjoy my work.  I have a roof over my head, clothes, food, a car, all my basic needs are met.  No, it's not ideal, but liveable.  I have a grown son that lives in another state, and for the most part takes care of himself.  For all these things, I am grateful.

   The majority of my adult life was spent meeting the needs of others, even at the expense of my own needs.  I worked hard.  I became my husbands sole caregiver when he became disabled, worked 13 years, 3 months and 7 days at a part-time job, without a whole day off.  Yes, I counted them, even the leap days!  It was what I had to do to add to the coffers.  There were no vacations, no day trips, no holiday spent just celebrating the day.  There was no moral, emotional, or physical help from his family.  I was on my own.  For years, I lived with the dread that things would never get any better.  There would never be anything else.  A hopelessness set in that nearly destroyed me.  When my husband passed away due to complications from surgery, my life was changed.   The ensuing 5 years have been about learning how to life my life for me.  How to find peace, hope, satisfaction, emotional health, healing some of the scars from the inside.  As you can see, some of them are still raw, but I'm getting better at it.

   Since that last entry, I've done some thinking about my situation, trying to figure out what I need to do to fix things, solutions that I can and have to live with.  Yes, I will go to the lake often, and yes I will enjoy that.  And I will find things to do on my hours off, but it's not the same thing.  It's not what I wanted(needed for *me*) to do for my summer.  The last few years have been about working, earning a living, knowing that I cuold support myself.  I  need more than that, now.  That's what the few plans this summer were about.  I have to reformulate my plans, somehow, for later.  In the meantime, I will go back to dreaming about going someplace, doing something for *me*.  I won't give up on those dreams.  Been there, done that, and I didn't like it.  Maybe this is a hint that I should be concentrating on my emotional health and spirituality, learning something else for now.  Maybe it's a hint that I should settle down and make that quilt for my son.  I think he's going to need it this next winter.

   Oh, and that neighbor came over last night while we were sitting outside, but Bro sat between us.  She's lucky!  This time....

                              ~Thanks For Stopping By~

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Reality Bites!

Disclaimer: I don't claim that my life is all sunshine and lavendar, but i do try to keep the stinkweed out of this particular "bed of roses".  You gardeners know what I mean.

     I haven't written much about the day to day "stuff" going on in my life lately and that stuff has got me in a blue funk.  So please bear with me while I whine a little bit.  I was so looking forward to summer.  I had made plans to do some summertime activities. Some fun stuff.  Over the last couple of weeks, I've watched them all-one by one-vanish into the realm of wishful thinking.

   I've been working very hard trying to tame the pessimistic side of my nature, trying very hard to build some selfl-esteem, believeing that I am worth good things happening to me.  I have what I jokingly refer to as "doormatitis".  That I don't deserve the best chair position at the kitchen table, the closest parking spot, of course it's my fault you didn't pay the bills on time-wipe your feet here.(sorry that was just too sarcastic), that my value as a person isn't as important as others. That I'm not good enough to be treated better, to expect better.  A psychologist would have a field day with me.

   Anyway, I had plans for a couple different things to do.  the trip to see Kansas at this music festival, at least for me,has been cancelled.  My landlord called to see if I'd be interested in doing some part-time caregiving work.  During the phone conversation, I discovered that the rent has gotten way behind.  That things are at the point that it will take all summer to catch up.  I feel ashamed that I didn't keep on top of the situation, knowing the irresponsible way my "roommates" handle billpaying.  For those of you that are new to my journal, I share a house with my brother and nephew.  But complaining about them not paying their fair share isn't my point here.  I now have to concentrate on getting the rent caught up.  The $125 I had set aside for the trip was sent for rent-no Kansas.

   I was planning on taking the last weekend in July off to follow the canoe marathon.  It's a 125 mile race down the river-an all night event.  I don't normally ask for weekends or holidays off, I don't mind working them.  At my company, you have to fill out a calendar for the days you are not "available" to work.  You have to do this a month in advance.  July's calendar was due by June 1st and sent in with my days off marked.  When I received my schedule for the month of July, I saw that I am scheduled for shifts on both days.  I called the office manager and she told me that she had "forgotten" about my request and that there were so many others that had asked for the same weekend, she was having trouble covering the open shifts. (Wipe your feet here)  So the one thing I could have afforded to do-$30 for gas-I can't get the days off to do.  Now, the last thing I was planning to do in August, I've scrapped.  There are only so many times I can beat my head against the wall and not hurt myself more.  And yes, I do realize what I just said.

   So for now, I'm in a blue funk.  I didn't really ask for all that much.  But, I didn't plan far enough in advance, prepare for life's little bites in the ass, or keep things in the perspective that more than likely they wouldn't happen anyway.  I'm just having a more difficult time than usual handling it.  I'm one of those people that just go on, gettin through my days the best I can, but sometimes that means carrying along alot of resentment at the unfairness of my life.  The good news is that I'll get over it-I always do. 

   Oh, and if my backyard neighbor comes over here one more time, to tell me how to live my life, I swear I'm going to knock her into next week!  I don't care if she has been a friend of my brother's since childhood.  But...that's a whole nother journal entry.  So, thanks for letting me blow off some steam, I'll be okay.  And as always....

                        ~Thanks for Stopping By~




Saturday, June 21, 2008

Just for a moment...........

   The world seemed to stop.  A pause so subtle, that if you weren't aware of it, it wouldn't have been noticed.  I paused, myself.  Looking at the clouds floating by, bottom-heavy with  moisture, kissed on the head with the sunlight of evening, I felt it.  Just for a fraction of a breath.  No breeze, no sound, the waves even coming to a hushed standstill.  Then everything slipped back into rhythm and the world moved on.  But just for that moment, the beauty was unspeakable, the emotion felt in every fiber of my being.  A tear formed in gratitude for being blessed with the experiencing of this miracle of nature, when one season slipped quietly into the next.  As the soft breeze of a spring evening became the shortest night of the year.  As I sat on the sandy beach, I watched three children build a sandcastle, or at least their best rendition of one.  Two kayakers drifted slowly on the lakes' blue surface, having a quiet conversation.  A laughing little girl with a plastic net waded in the shallows searching "little fish", who moved just quickly enough to avoid being scooped up.  Celebrants of this progression of life, unaware of the momentous transition.  Unaware of that pause as they go about the business of enjoying the simple pleasure of an evening at the lake. 

   My contemplation of being the recipient of this miracle of time, carried me for another hour.  To thoughts of summer's pleasures, of the ability to take the time to stop for a moment and just listen to life, to just enjoy your surroundings.  To pause long enough to catch the scent of a fresh summer day, to appreciate the sight of a delicate wildflower that adds to summer's palette of color, as it gently sways in a breeze. 

   It's moments like these that carry me through when life's vagaries make me wish for that peace, that quiet communion.  When things don't turn out as I'd hoped, when plans are changed and abandoned, when I want to escape the realities of daily existence, I draw a deep breath and visualize, feel my connection to the miracle of nature.  I come here to refresh my soul.  

                                ~Thanks For Stopping By~

Thursday, June 19, 2008

At Last.....


        Well.  It's time.  Time to go and greet the brother she hadn't seen in 20 years.  Time to meet the woman who has so graciously offered her a bedroom in her home, to get started on her new life.  They had actually gone to the same high school, but were a few years apart in age, so the memories of her were faded with time.  The directions were easy, the house just as had been described.  She pulls into the driveway, noting that her brother wasn't home from work yet.  There are kids in the yard that immediately come running to the car.  She's never met any of them, but learned all about them from the many phone conversations during her last months in Ohio.  Climbing out of the car, she's engulfed in hugs of welcome and excitement.  Tears threaten, she hasn't felt this welcome by anyone in a very, very long time.  Before she can catch her breath, the car is being unloaded and she's being led upstairs to the bedroom that's been painted and prepared just for her arrival.  There's lots more in the car, but that'll have to wait.  There are more greetings to come first.

    The lady who had offered her a home, walked in and opened her arms in welcome.  As dinner was being prepared, her brother came in and wanted to know who'd parked in "his place"?  And with Ohio Plates!   More hugs of welcome and tears of long-awaited reunion.   Home. At last.  She had been gone so long that it felt like moving to a whole new town, and finally a whole new life-lived for herself, lived the way she wanted,  lived with the knowledge that she has control of her own life now.  A brand new start.  It will be good, it will be all hers.

    And it is.  I have some complaints about life's minor problems.  Who doesn't?  But all I have to do is look around me and see the town, the trees and wildlife, the lakes and rivers, the family that is imperfect, as only family can be and get away with it.  See all that means so much, and my heart swells with gratitude forthe opportunities for happiness, peace and a life well lived.


    Thanks for joining me for some of  my most precious memories.  For being here and welcoming me into a community that adds so much to my daily life.  For a connection beyond this place I love.  For that I am grateful, too.

                           ~Thanks For Stopping By~


Tuesday, June 17, 2008

A memory or two

    Hmm, town or the lake?  Not much of a decision, really.  Of course, she has to go see the lake first.  She turns left to reach the road that was built when the expressway cut off the old way to the lake.  She pulls up to the corner, and looks over at the Pine Pantry, where her family went for huge ice cream cones on the way home from the lake on hot summer days, all those years ago.  Nope, she's had ice cream once already today.  Drive on.  She drives by the beach where she'd spent so many summer afternoons.  There are "No Parking" signs posted there now, so she drives on a few blocks, parks on the side of the road and walks back to the beach.  The lake is just as she remembers.  So blue, so clear, you can see the rocks, shells, and some minnows searching for their lunch.  Of course the shoes and socks come off and she wades out past her knees, almost to the hem of her shorts.  She hopes to someday show this lake to her son.  Then she can show him why she'd never go swimming anywhere except a pool, when she lived in Ohio.  One look and he'd understand.  Time to move on, she gathers her shoes and socks and walks barefoot through the sunwarmed sand to the edge of the road and back to her car.  With one long look back, she promises herself there will be many trips to this same lake for summer afternoons in the sun.

    She drives to the north end of the lake, to the North Higgins Lake State Park.  It's worth the $8 day tag to enter.  She parks in the day use lot and walks to the shady paths, through trees so tall, you lose your balance looking up to see the tops.  To her left she can hear the trickle of water from one of the many springs that feed the lake and keep it so clean and cool.  The ferns and pine needles carpet the forest floor, moss grows on downed tree trunks, home to some of the smaller creatures that live in this hushed, lush green haven.  The winds are calm today, so she can't hear the water that she knows lies just past the path that runs parallel to the shoreline.  Along here are the little grills that stand in the ground like sentinels of summer fun.  Just waiting for that bag of charcoal, hot dogs and burgers.  Picnic tables line the treed lots that were once lakefront campsites.  Memories of summers spent camping there, bonfires on the beach, swimming after dark, sneaking beers from the grownups' coolers, and all the adventures of teenagers, walk beside her  as she strolls along.  Short summer romances that lasted no longer than a week or two, the vows to write and see each other again, are as ephemeral as the ghosts that walk the beaches of the memories of those times. 

    One particular memory comes through the mists of time-her mother.  Tall, slender, her bathing suit in the style of the early 60's.  Taking towels from the line strung between trees, she beckons her and her brother out of the water for lunch.  Sitting in the sand with them and building castles until it was time to light the fire to cook dinner.  Roasting marshmellows over the fire built up for the evening, watching the sun set and the moon rise over the water, reflecting a beam of sparkling light right toward you, no matter where you stood.  Soothing lotion on the sunburn from the day, changing into pajamas and walking, flashlight in hand, with her, one more time to the outhouse before settling down for the night....    As the memories fly, she realizes that her time for reflection is up.  She heads back to the car, making that same promise to return for many summer days to come, and turns toward town.

                                       ~Thanks For Stopping By~

Saturday, June 14, 2008

It's just one of those days.......

    I could have picked frustrated for my mood, but since we have all these new ones, I looked a little closer and decided that I am definitely cranky.  Right now anyway.  It's just one of those days where things aren't working for me. 

   My internet connection is down, don't know what's wrong, cable TV is working, just not the internet.  Tech is coming on Tuesday or before if I'm lucky enough to be home if someone cancels their appointment.  So now I have to rely on the library(where I am now) and Wifi hotspots-if I can find any.  I  know that most McDonalds have it, but "Not the one in my town".  There is a local restaurant that used to have it, and I'll go there later to see if they still do. 

   From this public connection I can't get to my private journal.  I tried typing in all the combinations I could think of, but it won't let me find it.  That's where the rough draft for my 2nd entry in the story is.   ;(   So I can't do that. 

   Yahoo Mail is only letting me look at one or two emails before showing a page that says there's a problem, they're working on it, yada, yada, yada.........

   I did get my plants planted.  I was going to do it on Thursday afternoon, but they were calling for storms and I didn't want the poor little things to get all beat up their first night in their new home.  So I slid them under the outdoor table and a wheelbarrow.  Am I ever glad I did that!  We had some doosey storms blow through, hail, high winds, 2" of rain, the whole 9 yards.  .  A Severe Thunderstorm Warning, A Tornado Warning, and then another Severe Thunderstorm Warning.  All between 12am and 3:30am, what a long night that was.  I fell asleep on the couch in front of the TV, watching the radars and warnings come and go.  I woke up about 6:30 am with a sore back and neck.  Anyway, the plants are in and look good today.  I still have the 2 containers to plant with the herbs, I can work on them today.

   Well, since I can't do the entry I had hoped, I'll just sign off for now.  And hope to be around at least a little bit more this weekend.  As Always......

                             ~Thanks For Stopping By~


Tuesday, June 10, 2008

A Journey

    She opened the car door and got in, placing the large coffee cup in the holder to her right.  She glances out the passenger side window and watches the sun sparkling through the leaves of the huge maple tree on the firehouse lawn next door.  A good omen, a good day for a road trip.  She starts the engine, thinking of this as the last time she'll ever be here, this gas station, this town, hopefully as this person.  Taking a deep  breath, with trepidation and hope in her heart, she slides the gearshift into drive, the clock glowing 7:32am, and pulls away from the life she's leaving behind for new adventures.  It'll be a long day of driving, the way vaguely familiar, as she's taken this same route 17 years before on a family vacation.   She knows where to stop, rest, eat refuel, and rejuvinate.  Her car loaded down with her most precious possessions, she pulls out of the parking lot and drives away without a backward glance.

    As road trips go, it was as uneventful as she could hope.  Traffic was light, the turnpike heading west almost empty, as she watches the mile markers increase, lost the radio station she's listened to for years, found a temporary one to listen to, to her exit.  She remembers the last time she'd driven this way.  How they'd argued over which exit was the right one, giving in and continuing on to the next one, only to turn around and backtrack when she was proven right.  She exited to fill up her tank and coffee cup, leaving the last one in the ladies room, and focusing on crossing that state line to a new life.  She has a few regrets of the life she's leaving behind, but she'd done the best she could.  There was great sadness at what she thought of as her failures, and worry for her son, who was staying behind and moving forward with his own life.  He had encouraged her to pursue a new life, and "don't worry, Mom, I'll be fine".  At this moment she felt frighteningly alone yet amazingly calm, as she knew she'd made the right choices.  Climbing back in the car, pulling onto the entrance ramp, she continues her journey.

    There it is.  the sign that indicates she's crossed the state line.  The sign that indicates she's no longer moving away from, but moving forward.  Welcome To Michigan!  If she wasn't on the expressway, she'd pull over and step out of the car, just to see if the ground felt any different, if there was welcome in the soil for her long awaited return. ::sigh::  That would have to wait for her next break.  Traffic has picked up now as she skirts the larger cities of lower Michigan, and commuters enter and exit with the smooth skill of daily trips along these roads.  She watches as the mile markers increase again, and wonders how they decide which end of the state to start at.  Are they all measured east to west? South to North?  And what if the highway cuts diagonally across the state? Does that make it look bigger than it is?  Okay she's getting punchy, it's time to take that break where she gets to set foot on the ground of home, in a broad sense, as she still has 150 or so miles to go.  As she sits in the restaurant and watches people come and go, she notices that they don't look any different, or sound that much different, yet feel a world away from the small town she'd left that morning.  She splurges on a hot fudge sundae and trades the coffee for iced tea as the afternoon heats up, and heads out on the final leg of her journey.

    At last, the sign for Exit 239!  It's been a long day.  She's watched the level fields of miles and miles of farmland, grow into the hills and forests of Northern Michigan.  A breeze blows the scent of pine into the car.  How she's missed that smell.  You know, the fresh fragrance when you first bring a fresh cut tree into the house at Christmas time.  As she looks to the right she sees the steep bank of the hill that they had to cut through when they built the expressway, taking most of the acreage of the farm where she grew up.  At the top are the white pines, that now, tower toward the sky.  She has a picture of herself standing next to those trees when she was 4 and they weren't much taller than she was.  Now, she truly feels like she's come home.  She flips on the turn signal, exits the expressway, and just stops at the intersection at the end of the off ramp for a few minutes as the thoughts and memories overwhelm her.  Home!

    It's 2:45pm and she's not expected till 4:30, so she's got some time to drive around and explore some of the sights and  memories of her youth.  Which way to go first?

    I'll save that for another entry.....

                                        ~Thanks For Stopping By~     


 Update:  3:40pm.  We're under a Severe Thunderstorm Warning till 4:00pm, but I can see blue sky out my western facing window.  So there's still hope of getting my hands dirty!

Rain, Rain, go away, come again another day....

or later tonight, after I get the gardening stuff done. 

   Plant shopping,  I love it.  I've done some over the last couple days and am ready to get things in the ground and pots.  But the sky has other plans for me this morning.  Hopefully, it will clear up-or at least quit raining later this afternoon.  We built a cute little 8x2 ft. garden by the front door porch, just need to add some soil and enrichments and I'll be ready to plant.  We're putting in some purple osteospermum(look like daisies), ruffled petunias, tall snapdragons, and I'm going to stick a couple fernleaf dill plants in there.  I don't think they'd do very well in pots as they'll get to about 3 ft. tall.  Then, Bro's got some flowers for the front, and I've got some herbs for pots.  One will be full sun, with sage, rosemary, chives, thyme, and basil.  Then one for part shade with parsley, lemon balm, and lemon thyme.  I've got some coleus and sweet potato vines for another pot that I want to put on the back porch rail.  I just love the combination of dark reds and greens of these two foliage plants.  I just have to keep it well watered.

    Why wait so long?  Well, in my area, the last frost date is May 31st, the nights are finally warm enough for plants to not be too stressed by cold.  We have a fairly short growing season, with the first frosts in the fall a possibility as early as late Sept. 

    I miss gardening the way I used to in Ohio.  I could dig and plant anything-anywhere I wanted.  I had vegetable gardens stuck all over the back yard.  I always had pots of flowers and foliage plants on the deck, the morning glorys owned the lattice work that sided the deck, and sometimes invaded the central space if we didn'twatch them closely.   But then, I didn't work such long hours, and had the time to nurture and weed.   I'll be happy with what I can do here, and make it as wonderful as I can.  I'd love to be surrounded by plants!!!

    I have a short morning shift-taking my client thrift shopping!  :)  Then maybe I can come home and get my hands in the dirt!  Hope to be able to write more tonight.  I have an entry all ready to go, started it last night, got down to the last sentence, looked away from the keyboard to talk to Potsey, hit the wrong key and POOF!  cleared screen.  So I wisely closed down and went to bed.  ::sigh::

                             ~Thanks For Stopping By~

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

Wanna See?

    Since I'm not so computer savvy, I'll give you an address for Google or Mapquest, check out the aerial view.  This is where I go to the beach.

11747 N. Higgins Lake Dr., Roscommon, MI  48653

It's as blue and clear as it looks from the sky. 

One of these days I'll learn how to do all that stuff, put pictures in here, etc.  I promise. 

                                        ~Thanks For Stopping By, Again~

Beginners Luck!!!

    When the Red Wings won their way to the Stanley Cup Finals, I predicted that they would win it in 6 games.  It came down to the last 1/2 second.  The replay showed that the puck crossed in front of the crease with 0.00 seconds left on the clock and.................

The Detroit Red Wings Win the 2008 Stanley Cup!!!!!

Yay!!!!!  My first full season watching hockey and the Red Wings won the Stanley cup.  I got to watch almost all of the Finals games, only missing part of the games while working.  I'm so excited!  And there's nobody here to celebrate with.  Potsey's with friends, and Bro went to his bedroom to watch and go to bed early.  HUMPH!  I still loved every minute of it.  I think I scared them off cuz I'm always asking questions.  What ever!

    I just had to tell someone, Thanks for always being here!!!

                         ~Thanks For Stopping By~


                               Go Red Wings!!!!!

Whew...Busy, busy!

     The title just about says it all.  I'm on a short day off during one of those insanely busy weeks with LOTS of hours.  56, if no more are added.  The midnight shifts are done, for now.  My schedule will be lightened up to 35 or so hours for a couple weeks and then I'm sure it'll pick back up.  I have to play catch up in reading journals, and really miss spending the time I'm used to here. 

    I do find the time to enjoy myself.  I was driving home from a Sunday midnight shift, when I just knew it was the perfect morning to stop at the State Park Office and get my year entrance sticker.  And of course, as I was right there, I might as well stop by the beach and see what was what.  It was a beautiful blue sky morning, calm winds, so the lake was like glass.  As I walked down the path to the beach, I looked up just in time to see one of my friends-a bald eagle-soaring just over the tree tops.  What an auspicious welcome to a place that hold so much meaning for me.  There's just something that draws me there when I have a couple hours to swim, walk the beach, just sit and watch the waves, write, and just be.  Do you know what I mean? 

   A visit to the lake isn't complete without rolling up the pantlegs and dipping my toes-okay up to my knees-in the water.  It's still Very Cold!!!  A deep, springfed lake that still had ice 7 weeks ago, Higgins Lake takes some powerful warm days and nights to get to that swim, without turning blue, temperature.  And I'll bet there's some fool out there who's already turned blue from a swim this spring.  There's one of the above ground springs that feed the lake, there at the beach, and it was actually warmer than the lake water.  I also had the privelege of seeing a Mama duck with 11(I had to count twice) still fuzzy, baby ducks going for a morning swim.  Thankfully, the eagle was off looking for breakfast somewhere else, but I bet the Mama duck knew that.  That kind of sight always touches me deep down, and nudges my gratitude for being able to live here(Home) again.  To really take the time to observe and appreciate the natural world that surrounds me, to remember that there's more to life than a fat paycheck and a Red Wings Stanley Cup win.  Which I will seriously be upset about, if they blow it!  Game 6 tonight at 8pm!

    There are so many things I want to do, so many projects running through my mind, so much to do, so little time.  I've got to pick one or two of my most desired and start working on them.  Right now, I'm in the middle of making 7 beaded necklaces that a friend wants to give as year-end gifts for her employees.  I lent her a necklace to wear to an event and she was looking for something unique and handmade, so.....  It did give me an excuse to go bead shopping, always a tough job, and of course I got "way" more beads than I needed, with some ideas for necklaces for myself.  That project may be at the top of my list of things to do for ME!

    Well, I've got some errands to run, haven't even gotten dressed after my "nap", and some journals to catch up on before the hockey game.  So, I'm off to fill the rest of my day off.  As always....

                                   ~Thanks For Stopping By~

Thursday, May 29, 2008

Nice People.....

   Something I have waited years and years to do.  We're making plans and reservations to go see Kansas at a music festival in June.  It all started with me coming across a website over the weekend, forgetting to mention it, and then something So nice happened tonight.  I was reading journals and one of my favorite(no, not just because of this entry) bloggers wrote an entry about this-my favorite band in my whole life. Stop by and read his clever and informative journal. 

    Dang it!  I can't get the linky thing to work.  Go to http://journals.aol.com/pchilcoat1/chilis-sauce/.  Paul will take requests for groups or songs and make an entry with all kinds of infomation.   Thanks again, Paul.  He writes about other interesting things, too.

   Anyway, back to what I was saying....this reminded me of the website and concert information that I had intended to mention to Bro(another Kansas fan).  I told him all about it and now we're planning a big weekend trip to this festival and concert.  I am SO excited.  Now all I have to do is call in a HUGE favor from my office manager(who does owe me big) and get that weekend off.  I don't see it being a problem.  We have to schedule our "unavailable days" over a month in advance and it's kind of hard to know what to ask for unless it's something that you know of well in advance.  But I AM GOING! 

   Speaking of work, I'm working 3 midnights in a row, so I'll be alittle scarce this weekend.  After that, as long as everyone shows up where and when they're supposed to, I should have a pretty easy week.  The problem from the yesterday was dealt with, the aide just lied about not knowing she had to be in early, and I told her what I thought of her actions and what it meant to me to have to let the other client down.  She felt pretty bad after that. Good.  I usually don't want to get in other people's faces about things-not worth it-but that incident put a dent in my work integrity.  And honestly-just plain pissed me off.  Now it's behind me.  ::deep breath and life goes on::  :)

   Well, that's about it for now, I just had to share my news as I am so excited about this.  You all have a great weekend.  And as always....

                                   ~Thanks For Stopping By~

p.s. Oh, and I love all the new Moods to pick from, now I'll have a dilemma deciding how I feel!

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

And don't forget the turtle...

    Today, which actually started yesterday(in the clock confused world of midnight shifts) had a few bumps in the road that really ticked me off.  Then doing something nice for someone resulted in some amazing sights.  I'm alittle "loopy" as the mood window indicates, so if this doesn't make sense, I'll have to just plead that for me(today) it's the middle of the night in the middle of a gorgeous day.  Huh???  Let me explain the situation.  I'm a day person, have trouble sleeping past daylight in the normal course of things.  Right now though, I'm working some midnight(8pm-8am) shifts that have my sleep cycles all messed up.  Usually after a  midnight shift, I nap a couple hours and then am up for the rest of the day.  Today though, I need to sleep as I have another midnight shift tonight.  But I'm not sleepy, it's a beautiful May afternoon, so here I am with a case of insomnia.  Anyway, back to the story. 

    I worked last night and was supposed to be relieved at 6:30am by the day shifter so that I could go to another client for a 2 hour shift from 7-9am.  This was all arranged, confirmed, and expected.  6:30 comes and no day girl.  6:45 and I'm on the phone to the on-call to find out what happened.  No clue, she can't get the day shifter on her home phone, well no, she's already left so that she can be here by 8am.  ::sigh::  I explained that I was due 15 miles away at 7am and told the on-call that I'd call the client, make apologies, and find out if she wants me to come late(which I know she won't) letting the on-call off the hook from talking to the client when she really has no idea what is going on.  Confused yet?  I am...  I made the call, confirmed that 7-9am wouldn't want me to come, apologized over and over, and called on-call to cancel the shift.  I waited for 8am and the day shift girl arrived on time.  No, she didn't have any clue that she was supposed to be here at 6:30am. (heavy sigh now)   The client(12 hour shift) needed someone to go pick something up for them and didn't know how they were going to arrange it, so I volunteered to go on the errand as the store opened at 8am.  I had nothing else to do, I'd lost my other shift. 

    It's a beautiful, sunny, cool morning.  I'm traveling south on Old-27 and all of a sudden a shadow comes from behind, over the front of the car.  I look up and spy a bald eagle, maybe 25 feet in the air, swoop to my right toward the watershed area and down to find some breakfast.  What a sight!  Not 50 yards past there, I look to my right and see a pair of great blue herons standing in the marsh grasses, maybe looking for their own breakfast.  A mile past there are the osprey nests, up in some treetops, but visible from the road.  A couple of them were occupied, the birds just sitting there watching the world go by.  Okay, time to take a few deep breaths, contemplate the wonders that surround me.  As I pass the duck crossing signs, I think about the sight of mama duck and 6 or 8 little ducklings wadddling across the road, stopping traffic as the more important occupants of the road.  I smile!  I completed my errand and on the way back spotted the osprey, still nesting, the herons still in the same spot, a couple pair of ducks dunking for their breakfast, and there on the side of the road, a sight that should warrant another of those nature crossing signs.  A huge turtle.  That's right, in the gravel on the side of the road, sunning himself, a turtle about 10-12 inches round.  Okay, I get the message!  Drop off the stuff, go home eat breakfast and think about what you've just witnessed-the miracle of life as it goes on around your crappy morning.  ::Sigh of wonder this time::

    So here I am at 3 in the afternoon suffering from the insomnia of a day person working midnight shifts.  I'm going to go try to nap.  Have a wonder-filled afternoon...

                                   ~Thanks For Stopping By~   

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

You Just Never Know

   The crafty thrift shopper strikes again!  In my wanderings between clients, I pass through some area towns.  In one of those towns yesterday, with a little time to kill, I stopped at a thrift store.  No real intentions of buying anything, not looking for anything in particular, I walked in the front door and directly to my right found this adorable little ceramic pig-piggy bank.  Cute, I can see it sitting on my dresser!  Into a basket it goes.  I wandered over to the book section and found an old notebook(the kind that takes half-size pages).  I opened it up and found a cookbook compilation from the Auxiliary to S. M. Heller Memorial Hospital in Napolean, OH.  From 1957.  Before Kinko, this was all hand typed(probably on a manual typewriter), copied and punched.  In pretty good shape for its age.  Only 2 years younger than me!  For a buck, it joined the pig.   I can't wait to discover some old fashioned goodness recipes.                                                                                                     I also found some inspiration!  I've been looking for that just right quilt pattern design to strike, and yesterday, I found it.  There were some gallon storage bags full of quilt squares.  Some are 3", some 6", and one has some larger sized scraps.  They all were $1 and $2, a bargain I couldn't pass up!  My mind is beginning to form the basic design as I write this.  (can you hear the buzzing?)

   On to my next client of the day.  He's a thrift shopper, too.  Hearing my tales of success, he got the bug to go.  So we jumped in the car(well, not exactly jumped) and headed downtown.  Jackpot again!  He found a couple pieces of furniture, I found a new(to me) outfit for work, and of course, a few books to add to my already too large collection, and a book for a friend.  Quite a haul for the day at just $36.  You just never know what you're going to find!

   I'm working some overtime midnight shifts this week.  I'll be putting some away for the canoe marathon weekend in July.  No, I'm not in it, but will be following it.  I'll tell you all about it in a later entry-it's alot of fun.  Then there's a little trip I want to take in August.  More details on that later, too.  I've got to catch some sleep when I can this week, so I'll be saying good night, and.....

                               ~Thanks For Stopping By~ 


Monday, May 19, 2008

Well, Finally!

   It's just been one of those afternoons-

OH, OH!  Red Wings Score-4-0!!!!!

   Sorry, I'm listening to the hockey game.  The Detroit Red Wings could finish this series and move on to the Stanley Cup Finals with a win tonight.  Anyway, like I was saying-it's been one of those afternoons.  I've been trying to do an entry since about 4pm.  Potsey came home with some taco meat and I had to stop and make a taco burger for a late lunch, or early dinner(whatever).  He needed to borrow this to look something up, so.........

   I make another attempt to get a post written, and the landlord comes over.  She's one of those friends that just stop over for a minute and stay 2 hours.  We had a very nice visit and I haven't seen her the last couple times she's been here so.........

   This is my last try for tonight.  If I don't manage this, I'll wait till morning.  Very early, before any interruptions are awake!!  I know that I'll be drifting off to dreamland early tonight as I've only had 3 1/2 hours of sleep since yesterday morning.  I had to work an unexpected midnight shift last night and my regular day shift this morning.  So I'm tired.  I'll have another midnight shift tomorrow night, but a chance to take a nice long nap beforehand in the afternoon. 

    I had a rare pleasure yesterday evening.  I was driving back from my afternoon shift and on the side of the road, not 20 yards away, stood a Bald Eagle.  He was eying a deer that had most likely been hit by a car and tossed of the road.  He was either guarding it till he could figure out how to carry it off or eat the whole thing.  What a beautiful, regal bird, even in scavenger mode.  You don't usually see them so close like that.  More often than not, just in flight, especially over the lakes, fishing.

   Spring is in full forward mode here, although the weather has been colder than usual.  We have some wild blueberries(huckleberries) in the yard that are in bloom, and the ferns are shooting up by inches each day.  Now we just need some warmer weather.  It's going to be a good summer.

   Well, I'm quickly running out of steam, so I'm going to sign off for tonight, and get ready for bed.  Have a wonderful week. 

                                  ~Thanks For Stopping By~


Wednesday, May 14, 2008

This Kid is in a Different Candy Store!

Hi!   This is just a quick entry.  I FINALLY got my wireless connection!  Not with the help of the boys here that are supposed to know what they were doing(but didn't), but through HP Help and Support.  What NICE people they are!!!

   Okay, I've calmed down a little bit.  I am just so excited, though, I couldn't help myself, and there wasn't anyone online or here at home to announce my wonderful news to.  I've tried the wireless connection in the kitchen and in my bedroom, but not outside, as it's been raining today.  It works!!! Yes!!  Now, when I wake up at 5am and want to get online, I don't have to worry about waking anyone up, I can sit right here in my room and just type to my little heart's content.

   Okay, now that I have that out of my system, I've got a few errands to run, so I'll see you later-ANYTIME, ANYWHERE I WANT!  And I promise I won't talk your ear off about this fantastic new toy of mine so much anymore.  You all  have just as nice an evening as I'm going to!  And................

                                ~Thanks For Stopping By~

Oh, and it hs mahjong tile games on it, too.  My Favorite.    Bye!

Saturday, May 10, 2008

Learning Curves

    I'm learning new things everyday.  Been a student of this particular course for 4 days now.  Doing okay, fitting time on here(the laptop) around the rest of my life.  But I feel like I'm back in high school, staying up late studying for the big test tomorrow.  During the period where I only  had access at the library, I just didn't have the time to learn much.  So far, I've learned how to create tabs, rip and burn CD's, and when I stumble across the right button, how to edit my playlist.  I still haven't been able to get the wireless router set up, have to get an ethernet cord out of storage(actually that's Potsey's department) from "some box" of things that's kind of buried in the back, but he knows exactly where it is.  The problem with that is that he's in Detroit for the weekend-so I have to wait till Sunday night.  ::sigh:: 

    At least now, I can watch you tubes, videos, and get to all the sites that were blocked at the library.  Yay!!  Oh, and instant messagee with  my Son.  That's worth a double Yay!  He's encouraging me to keep trying different things on here, and telling me that I will get it eventually.  He's talking about digital cameras, sending me music and photos and I  have to keep reminding him that it's going to take me some time, I still have the training wheels on and can't go over the jumps till I at least have a helmet!! 

  I promise that I will eventually get tired of talking about this and get back to some other topics.  Like the raking in the yard, plans for plantings-a few in the ground, but most in pots.  Like visits to the lake and all the fun things I hope to be able to do this summer.  With gas prices the way they are, most have to be fairly close to home, but I think I've discovered something interesting to try.  We were looking at topographical views of the hometown area and found some trails, little lakes, and interesting tree lines and stuff that we'd like to go explore.  I'll have to hit up the DNR for some maps of the state lands and trails around here, so that I don't get lost and end up in some sand pit without cell reception.  Maybe find some new spots to pick blueberries(huckleberryies).   AANNDD..... if I do get a digital camera and learn how to use it and post pictures here, I can show you, too.

    Well, I have to go to the Post office before it closes in 15 minutes, so it's time for me to close out.

                                              ~Thanks For Stopping By~

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

So-I guess you're wondering...

    What exactly was she talking about in that last entry?  The woman has a vague way with words sometimes.   Well, what it means-exactly- is that I "FINALLY" got my laptop!  That's right folks, I got my stimulus rebate check yesterday and headed for Walmart and spent the whole damn thing on a brand new laptop computer.  I conveniently had the whole afternoon and evening off to shop, get it home and set up, to read all the warranties, instructions and get it hooked up to the internet.  That in itself was a challenge.  I bought a wireless router to set up so that I can go back to my bedroom and just type away.  We didn't have enough slots in the modem to set that up, so a splitter is the next purchase along with the discs I need to copy the system recovery stuff.  For now, I'm in the living room when I need to be online. 

    With all the blunders I've made so far, I'm surprised it hasn't just thrown its processor up in the air in frustration at the idiot tapping on the keys.  I will get the hang of this, learn how to do all the things I want to, take it with me whenever and wherever I want, and bring myself stumbling into the 21st century.  Now I face the challenge of living a simple life and toting technology along with me.  It should be a fun and educational experience.  Actually there is some free online education through HP that I want to look into, maybe sign up for, and get myself started.  I know, I'm kinda going on and on about this.  But this is the one thing that I really wanted to do for myself.  Doing for and helping others delayed it longer than I wanted, but my time has come and I am So looking forward to it.

    Okay, I'm closing now and going to get caught up on some journals and do some exploring.  So........

                                ~Thanks For Stopping By~

Please, come on in.....

    Welcome to my new home!  I'm so glad you could join me.  As you can see, it's not finished just yet, still bare in spots.  But with some time, it'll fill in nicely.  It's so nice to finally have a place to put my feet up, take my time-whenever that time may be.  It's been a long 6 months of travel, of having only temporary lodgings with such limits on what I can touch, see, arrange just so, and when and how long I could stay.  But now... Now, I can spend time and visit exactly as I want.  Even in my nightgown with that first cup of Java nectar at my elbow.  I plan on spending a great deal of time here.  This is, after all, something I have waited for, at times not so patiently.  I hope you'll come by and visit often.  As the finishing touches are added, I'm sure I'll grow and change right along with it.  And isn't that what home is?  A sanctuary you feel comfortable enough to say and do what you want, without having to worry about the world's opinion?  A place to truly be yourself. 

    For some, happiness is material possession, for others it's being surrounded by crowds of friends and loved ones.  Happiness for me is finding a place of my own, a place to think and dream, to read and write, to create just for me.  A peaceful aloneness to let my mind wander, or draw up a plan for my next creative project.  To add music, or not, the choice is always only mine.  Here, I can invite others in or spend an afternoon just gazing around at everything there is to see. 

    As we walk back to the entrance after your tour, know that you're welcome to visit, just any time.  And as the door closes, you'll hear...

                                  ~Thanks For Stopping By~