Thursday, October 20, 2016

Random thoughts that really made me go hmmmmmm

My husband was telling me about a conversation at work around Halloween.  He was telling a coworker that it was my favorite holiday and I love to decorate the outside of the house for it.  She said it wasn't a real holiday.  And his response was if I can decorate for it, it is a holiday to me. 

So I looked it up.  I was curious about the origin.  Of course it is more than likely another holiday "stolen" by the Christians to thwart other beliefs.  And it is considered a Christian holiday.  Which I was totally fascinated by since many ultra conservative Christians won't allow their children to celebrate because it is a holiday of the devil.  You know, those pesky witches..........

Anyway, more to the point of my random thoughts on my drive home was around what would I do as a parent.  I don't believe in a god but I do have a great reverence for the natural world.  From both a scientific perspective and for Mother Nature.  I am in awe of what this planet and the universe does simply by existing.  I can't and won't attribute it to any single great plan or being.  My belief is far bigger than that. 

That said, I celebrate in a more Pagan way.  I celebrate Halloween as the time of the harvest, the time when nature is heading to bed so to speak.  And I love the idea of celebrating those that are gone.  The All Souls part of the holiday.  Trick or Treating is fun for me because the kids love it so much.  They get to use their imaginations to become someone or something else for a night.  They get to run around outside and visit their neighbors.  It is the one night they are allowed to skip "stranger danger".  It is the one night of the year they are truly allowed to be "free".

Then, Christmas.  I don't celebrate it for the Christian reason.  I celebrate that time of year for what it is.  The turning of the natural cycle.  Winter Solstice.  It is the start of the earth's renewal.  The days begin to get longer.  The start of hope for spring begins.  And I love that.  I love the quiet of winter.  The falling snow. My decorations lean toward lights and snowmen.  To bring some light into the long dark days.  But to enjoy what winter offers.  And find beauty and peace in all of nature's cycles. 

Easter, same thing, I celebrate the Pagan rights of spring.  I celebrate renewal.  That the earth has woken back up, and will burst forth in all her growing glory.

I would never force religion on my children.  Instead I would teach them to think for themselves, to find what they want to  believe in.  I would teach them to be kind for the simple reason that it is the right thing to do.  I would try very hard to raise them color blind.  To raise them to see all people for who they are, not what they are.  Judge a person by their actions, not by their skin color.  Let people be who they want to be.  Love who they want to love.  And as they meet people, learn and explore the world, then they can decide if religion is right for them.  And which one is right for them. 

As they make those choices though how do you raise them to not feel left out of traditions so many people partake in.  How do I take them to Grandma's house and explain Christmas and church.  How do I not color their impressions.  I have no clue how I would do any of that. 

Ultimately it doesn't matter.  We chose not to be parents so it is a conundrum I will never have to deal with.  But still, what would I have told little Nick or Maggie?  I wonder............

Wednesday, October 19, 2016


Twin Peaks, remember that show?  I was a huge fan.  At some point in the series they introduced a character that was a shut-in.  Someone that didn't go outside.  Laura Palmer used to visit him.  Bring him meals.  He grew orchids.  I don't remember details, his name, or anything else, but I remember thinking to myself he was the one character I could most relate to.  Someone who doesn't want to go outside and deal with people.  Exposure to someone like him was huge for me.  It was eye opening.  This seemingly weird need to exist in my own world and not interact with others was real.  There was someone else, albeit fictional, who felt the same way.  And he was LIVING the dream. 

Now we have the world wide web.  Introverts have united, maybe alone, in the quiet of their rooms, but united anyway in a common love of solitude.  My only reference to extreme introverted behavior is no longer one fictional guy from an old show.  There are lots of us!  We can be social, just social in a completely alone sort of way.  From afar, curled up with a cup of coffee, and a cat or dog, or both.

 More than a few friends have said to me that they don't know anyone else like me.  A bookworm, loner, who doesn't like social activities, that is fascinated by all things solitary.  Someone who truly dances to the beat of her own private drum.  I actually took pride in those statements.  I have always fancied myself as an individual that doesn't worry or care what other people think of me and the choices I make.  The fact that people know it, and I think, love me anyway, was great news.

Don't get me wrong.  There are people in this world I love and enjoy spending time with.  There are even more that I enjoy a cyber friendship with.  But when it comes to my happy place, and my ultimate comfort zone, I prefer solitude. 

Thankfully, I am married to someone that is equally as comfortable in his own world.  My husband is even less social than I am.  We absolutely and completely love spending time together but we are equally as comfortable doing our own thing.  We can be in two different rooms of the house and not interacting and we are ok with that.  We don't need to spend every waking moment together.  I can happily sit in my library and read or do a puzzle and he will watch tv or work on his hobby. 

Being comfortable alone, being able to do things on my own, is very natural for me.  I have even realized at the end of a day running around town that I just spent an entire day in public but yet feel like I was in a bubble of privacy.  I also realize that I probably had one too many conversations with myself while I did so but hey, who gives a shit.

Anyway, being alone is very different from being lonely.  For me, solitude is a beautiful thing.

Friday, October 14, 2016


As I tried to update the "About Me" information I had to change the number of cats.  I changed from 3 to 2.  But the good and the bad of it really was a change from 3 to 2 to 1 to empty kitty nesters but then, happily, back to 2.  In just a few years a lot of changes.  A lot of tears, and then, a great deal of joy and laughter. 

Thankfully, not much else changed.  And I am truly grateful for that.  There is something to be said in life NOT changing.  It doesn't mean life if boring.  It doesn't mean I am not doing anything with my life.  It means that in many ways, the good parts of my life are still there.

Since my last post I have traveled to Puerto Rico, Ireland, Argentina, Malaysia, Hong Kong, and Germany.  Each trip unique and amazing 

Oh, and we moved.  We had joked that we would leave our home feet first because we were too lazy to move but alas, the commute got to be too much.  The drive time seemed to be getting longer and longer no matter what the weather.  The final straw was a late night at work when we both left well after rush hour and taking two different routes ended up with almost an hour and half drive to go less than 30 miles.  In good weather!   We looked at each other that night after commiserating about our drives and said, let's move.  We started looking at homes on the internet that night.  A few months later we made an offer on a home.  And only three years after that, we sold the old house and were completely moved out of I guess we were still really lazy.  We moved in to the new house one car load/trailer at a time.  Then three months later we hired a moving company to get the last of the big stuff moved.  The next 2 years and 9 months would be sent cleaning and remodeling the old house.  We made a deal with a friend that he could live there in exchange for doing some of the work.  Then after he found a home of his own we finished the rest.  Part of the reason we weren't in a huge hurry to sell was the down market.  We probably got close to 40% more by waiting for the market to recover.  And in fact when we were ready to sell the first time homes were selling faster than they were getting listed.  We sold when starter home inventory was at record lows.  And we sold not to someone that would flip it or rent it, but to a sweet family just starting out.  THAT was the most important part.  Our much beloved home went to a couple that would cherish it as their first home where they raised their family.  That house had the best spirit.  So much love.  It was wonderful to pass it on to someone who wanted the home for the same reason. 

Looking back, the other big change was losing my Aunt.  I knew, when I said goodbye to my Uncle that she would soon follow and she did.  Six short months later.  And that broke my heart.  I have never been closer to two people outside of my immediate family.  They were my world.  There are still moments when I think I should call them to tell them about something and it takes my breath away to realize that I can't.  I tell them in my heart.  I talk to them still in my thoughts.  They may be gone from this world but they will never be gone from my heart.  Coping with their loss has been hard.  The hardest thing I have ever had to do.  But we have brought many of their things home with us.  Pieces of furniture that have been around since I was a baby.  The yellow chair/stool that sat in her kitchen.  It's in my kitchen now.  I can't tell you how many dozens of hours that I sat in that chair talking to them while they cooked meals.  In the new house we gained a family room so it was only natural to use their sitting room furniture.  It's not the same as having them there but it provides some level of comfort, of familiarity.  And I know they would love that the things they loved and used endured.  That it has passed on to another generation.

Wednesday, October 12, 2016

Born to Run

Born To Run, born to forget.........I should have written this crap down.

For a girl that grew up in Jersey in the 80's this is pretty much required reading.  The rock god, The Boss, the man himself has penned a memoir.  But completely aside from that, as I sit quietly and devour his story it becomes all to apparent to me that I screwed up.  I didn't write down much of anything and it would appear that I am not a person who remembers details, dates, names, or well, most things.  Crap.

Social media and the fact that blogger never deleted this thing is about the best way for me to track back information.

The lesson here: Diary, journal, blogging, hell even Facebook isn't a bad thing if for no other reason but to help a person remember their life.  All that living, all those experiences, and whose to say we will remember them a few years down the road.  Hell, I can't tell you what I had for breakfast let alone what I did back in 1986.

How Bruce has done it, if he kept a journal, or if he just has a WAY better memory than me, is impressive.  I am in awe of all that he remembers.  The tiny details, the names,

So there I sat today thinking about this.  And how do I get myself to at least start recording my life on a more regular basis.  It's only going to get worse for me memory wise.  And then I remember my faithful and trusty blog.  I miss it.  Of course I have said that before and quit......again......but I feel I should do something.  And why not try to get back into the swing of what you love.

And in case you are wondering, I am enjoying the book so far. 

Saturday, March 03, 2012


When I was a little kid my Aunt and Uncle gave me a camera. They had been professional photographers for a while and so they shared their passion with me.

Once I started taking photos I couldn't stop. But it never dawned on me to make a go of it for a career. So, for all of these years I have only done photography as a hobby. The digital camera age has certainly made it a relatively cheap and fun way to spend my leisure time as of late. And maybe at some point it will stop being a hobby and become a career. In the mean time I am perfectly happy just doing photo shoots for friends.

I did put together a website so that other people can see my work. The families that I photograph share my work on Facebook so my name is getting around. But even if nothing really comes of it I don't mind. I love that I can create lasting memories for those that I love.


Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Mustang Love

My dream car is a Mustang. Since Ford redesigned the car in 2005 I have been in love. Every chance I get I rent one when I travel. I can't even begin to describe how happy driving that car makes me. No matter how hectic my day the second I slide into that drivers seat all my worries go away. To me it is the perfect car. The hubster knows that I want one and someday maybe I'll have one parked in the driveway.

Since I was a little kid I have loved the Mustang. The mid 60's models were awesome. By the time I was old enough to afford a car of my own the classic models were way out of my price range and the current ones were just downright ugly. But 2005 changed all that and I renewed my love for the car.

For both the hubster and I a car is just a box on wheels that will get us from one place to the other. We care more about reliability than we do anything else. Our Subaru is rusting but runs like a champ and we won't replace it till we absolutely have to. We do not see a car as something that will give us status. We don't need a car to validate our place in society. We aren't that shallow and status conscious. We have never felt the need to keep up with the neighbors or outshine our friends to feel special or superior. Yuppies we are not.

All that said, I am willing to admit that a Mustang would be more for me than just a box on wheels. There's a little bit of rebel, a little bit of leather, and a little bit of lace in that car.

I'll be sad when I have to drop it off at the rental place on Friday. This may be my last Mustang for a while.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

It's been a while

I have been thinking a lot lately about blogging and I really miss it. Life is busy and I feel like I don't have time for myself. If I can sneak in a 1/2 hour of reading on any given day it's a small victory.

Blogging was always a relaxing and fun activity that took my mind off whatever pressures the world would bring.

When I looked at my blog page I realized that I had to update some things. We no longer have 4 dogs and 4 cats. We have 3 dogs and 3 cats. Max, my beloved Swedish Vallhund and Hobbes, our very special kitty man died last year. They both lived very long and spoiled life but that doesn't make it any easier. Max died almost a year ago and I still miss him every day. (there are tears as I type this)

This past fall I also lost my Uncle Phil. He was a second father, a grandfather, and a friend to me. And now, I am watching my Aunt fall slowly to pieces. She misses him so much and is anxious to join him. They were married over 60 years so I can't blame her but it is hard to watch none the less. I tell her everyday that she is needed, that I want her in my life but the pull of joining her husband is stronger. The only thing I can do now is enjoy every minute I have with her.

A project at work has taken me to California every month over the past year and a half. It gave me a chance to see them so much more than I would have. The perfect work assignment at the perfect time and I am very grateful for that.

On the positive side, our dogs Caleb and Lily that were so scared of humans are now well adjusted and happy pups. When we take them to the dog park Caleb is the first to run up and greet other humans and dogs. The hubster and I couldn't have been more thrilled to see that. He is so brave now.

All in all life is good.

And I think I am excited about getting back into blogging.