Sunday, January 31, 2010

January: The Recap

I walked/jogged/ellipticalled my way through 85.2 miles during the month of January. I exercised in a formal way on 27 of the 31 days. There were several days that I did two-a-days, including today. This is the one intention that I am rocking hard. I have not counted any ancillary walking through the neighborhood/bus/store.

I had 5 no car days during the month and I'm fine with that. As the weather cooperates, I'll have more. I can still make goal.

I had 2 no spend days. I may have had more, but forgot to count them. No spend days means that I didn't spend any money on anything except food to cook for that day, since I'm operating more on a daily shopping basis. By default it means that I brought my breakfast/lunch/bev to work with me. More work is needed here, obviously. I did an awful lot of shopping getting The Closet mostly set up. I'm done with that now, so there will be no need for recreational shopping.

I got in 8 yoga sessions this month - not great, but okay. I just need to pump that up a notch - but will fail to add a session tomorrow as I've been pressed into service during the lunch hour to represent the office at a high, high level working lunch. Good thing I checked my office email today - I can make sure I wear my "Working Girl" suit.

I am not doing well with meditation. I certainly enjoyed the guided session I attended today. I just need to remember that there are guided sessions available on youtube. My meditations don't have to be hours on end - just a few minutes to get centered if that's all I can do.

I'm failing at the financial goals. Yet to be reimbursed business expenses coupled with vacation/wedding/moving expenses didn't allow for goal this month, but there always next month.

Weight, while not on my intention/goal list, is staying in range.

So that's it for January, TwentyTen.

Pebbles' dog seized this afternoon, so they didn't come over. I hated that for him/them and for me. I was really looking forward to this, was feeling a little fragile and didn't have a back-up plan. I ended up catching up on the parts of This Emotional Life that I'd missed earlier in the month - plus I went back to the gym this evening. Turned out just fine.

I'm getting ready to roast some veg for the week, get my gym clothes packed to take to work and put a little spit polish on The Closet.

Take good care of yourself. Be kind to others. Evaluate your progress.


The Long Goodbye

It's nearing the time to yank off the band-aid. Our inability to say goodbye to one another is leaving us both in limbo. Well, me in limbo - I cannot speak for him. I'm just trying to avoid the pain of missing him and I suspect he's just trying to avoid thinking that he's really alone. January is coming to a close with no action on his part. We've got a couple of outings coming up in the next week or so and then it's time that we go incommunicado for a while. I don't want to know what he's doing or not doing - it's not good for me to worry about it. What I don't know won't hurt me.

I guess it comes as no surprise that alcoholics routinely disappoint people, but what this really is is about my ability to say and mean that I want more. I am worth more - that I'd rather have nothing than to settle for what we had. And to be okay with my decision when it gets really tough, when I am really craving validation, when I'm tempted to pop back in for an ego stroke. That is my character flaw, not his. But trying to avoid pain is no way to live life. Avoidance is just another crutch, for me, at least.

I've been trying not to dwell on outcomes, but just live each day as it comes. So I'm not going to take any action on this today. But my gut is leading me strongly in this direction - I just need to make sure that I'm doing it for me and not in some attempt to manipulate him. I need to fully understand my motivation before taking action here.

Enough of that. I thoroughly enjoyed SnuggleBunny Sadie. She loved taking the stairs down to the dog area (and avoiding catwalks and elevators) and we have a great time! Except for having to take my laptop back up to Denton because it was chockful of virus' again - I'm not surfing for porn or going to any weird websites or opening any unknown mail. I don't know how I keep getting reinfected. I've got a new anti-virus on there now that's giving me notices, I just don't know enough about them to know. And I know we all read each other's sites and I'm the only one getting infected - I know I got pinged when going to a fellow blogger's site - perhaps it is safer to read strictly in reader without going to the site? Don't know how all of this works, but it is damned frustrating - took most of my day yesterday, with Sadie in the car, making two trips to Denton, as I wasn't going to pay for something AGAIN that I just paid for two weeks ago. Grrr.

I've some fun on tap for today. I'm going to meditation then probably on to church service. Pebbles and Slater are coming over and taking me to brunch (NO DOG) then we are going to a fundraiser at a local micro-brewery to benefit cancer research. Should be a good day.

I'm getting ready to hit the gym this morning then it's off to start the day.

Take good care of yourself. Be kind to others. Avoid crutches.


Friday, January 29, 2010

Slumber Party!

Miss Sadie Lu is coming over this afternoon to spend the night with me while Bick and a high-school buddy go to East Texas fishing tomorrow. The plan was to take her, but they couldn't get a cabin at the lake and are stuck staying in a hotel in town. I offered to keep her - unfortunately, the weather here is supposed to be coldish, so I don't know that we will venture out much other than for the necessary.

I'll have Bick pick her up on his way back through town on Saturday, as I have plans for Sunday. I will attend church/meditation on Sunday morning, then meet Pebbles and Slater for brunchy or maybe I'll make them brunch. Then we are going off to a cancer-research fundraiser sponsored by a local brewery where Pebbles' friend works. I don't so much like beers, but I'm all for social gatherings.

Had a good workout this morning. Am planning on taking in a Pilates class this afternoon. I need to get some grocery shopping in sometime today - there is nary a vegetable in my house. I forgot to mention the time I spent in the garden at Bick's last weekend. It was wonderful - I poked around in the dirt, harvested chard, spinach and a BUNCH of brussels sprouts. Yummy! I do miss not having access to the garden. But upon reflection, it does take away the need to keep getting fake nails. I'm no longer digging around in the dirt and I can keep my nails looking good au naturale. So this may be my last set of fakeys. Thanks for the thoughtful comments on this particular subject. I've kept the "french manicure" for a while now and while it is easy, it probably is an idea whose time has passed for me.

Take good care of yourself. Be kind to others. Authentic is good.


Thursday, January 28, 2010

Maintain Maintain Maintain

Went to spin class at lunch yesterday and should have followed it with an Aleve chaser, but did not. Good workout. Had another good workout this morning after an iffy night's sleep. I was doing so well there for a while. Oh well, I'm still functioning at about 85% - I'll take it.

Got the mani and pedi done last night. No more pedi for me until summertime. Too darn much money - I wear very short but very fake nails as a maintenance issue, so I'll be keeping them. Between that and getting my hair colored tonight, it costs a lot of damned money to be an old woman!

I've got to do some things I don't want to tonight - cancel out of my wi-max. I went month to month, but I know I'll be hassled about this. I've just got to get this done before I have to pay for another month, since I now get my internet service with my local-channel cable bundle.

Today's class is restorative yoga. Delish!

pic is of me the morning of the wedding. I was trying to get a picture of my hair, which turned out very nicely. Obviously, I've not mastered the art of the self-portrait.

Take good care of yourself. Be kind to others. Maintenance is a bitch.


Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Getting On With It

Feeling much better, a bit more centered. I had a great workout this morning on the elliptical. I did pass the time reading one of the many books that lovely, thoughtful and generous Graciela sent me. That's one way to declutter - pass your stuff on to someone else :-) I chose to read Playing For Pizza by John Grisham as it takes place in Parma. Parma is where the exbubba's family is from and is near where Pebbles spent her first summer abroad in Reggio Emilia living in a converted nunnery. The book is a wonderful fluffy romp through the food and traditions of that region on Italy. Fun and yummy. Grazie Graciela.

I had a lovely time last night at the residents' wine tasting event. Actually, it wasn't so much a wine tasting as just a gathering in a wine bar, but it was nice. I screwed up my courage and introduced myself around, asked to join tables and did meet some more nice people. I had a couple of glasses of wine, a nibble of cheese and a dose of dark chocolate and called it a night. It was lovely to then just walk home.

And speaking of places to walk to, I didn't talk about my first foray to the restaurant across the street that preceeded the whole dog disaster. Pebbles was very familiar with the Dallas location and said we must try the appetizers(trio of fries with homemade ketchup and mayo-thingy), the mac and cheese and the desserts (the tableside smores - OMG)! It doesn't take Einstein to see where the recent bump in weight came from! But oh, was it yummy! Oh, and instead of a bread basket, they start you off with popcorn drizzled with truffle oil and warm peanuts.

So I'll just immediately return to taking good actions - packing my lunch and breakfast, getting in my exercise and letting the scale be what it will be. If I get in a deprivation mind-set, then I tend to go off rails. Maintenance for me happens within a few-pound range. I'm content to stay right here for the time being. I'm hoping that the increased activity of living at The Closet will nudge the scale downward, but if it doesn't, well, it doesn't.

Tonight is my mani and pedi, with a hair color appointment following on Thursday night.

The thing I loved most about yesterday was getting myself out of The Closet and into a social situation. Being social hasn't been a part of my past, but that doesn't mean it can't be a part of my future.

Take good care of yourself. Be kind to others. Step out of your comfort zone once in a while.


Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Monday, January 25, 2010

I Hold These Truths

Over the past week or so, I've found myself wandering over to take Bick's inventory for him. "If only he would" this or that. And some of that is to be expected, certainly considering the disappointment in all of this. But the danger is me putting my life on hold to see what he will do instead of focusing on the things I need to be doing, the personal inventory that I need to be taking.

By focusing on what he's doing, I'm allowing his actions to dictate my life and happiness. Not that he's trying to do this, but that's what happens when I allow my mind to drift too much - other things develop too much power over my life. I am largely responsible for my own happiness and when I give over the control to someone or something else, then I feel less happy very quickly. Codependence in action, that is.

I've fallen by the wayside food and exercise-wise, but my plan is to stem that bad tide today, at lunch. Other good things include trying to schedule a mani and pedi, to get my hair colored (couldn't get an appt yesterday) and to get out and about, I'm going to a wine tasting for residents in my development. I'm looking forward to that.

I think I'm going to have to call in the professional carpet cleaners to get my carpets cleaned. I'm afraid of the residue left over on a d-i-y job, so that bill will go to my darling daughter - as for the lost stuff, well, that's just lost, but this will be an out-of-pocket expense that she needs to cover and she will.

Take good care of yourself. Be kind to others. Don't give away your power.


Good Dog

I'm mostly over the destruction of yesterday. And I'm looking forward to keeping SadieLu next weekend while Bick goes fishing. Now there's a good dog, even if she does like to sleep on the furniture! I'll enjoy her company!

I've heard from a friend of mine whose brother is gravely ill. Now that puts things into their proper perspective. Things are just things. People are what's really important. Of course Pebbles offered to make restitution immediately and I have not decided if/how much/??? and she decided on the spot that he could not stay for the ski trip. So she's fully aware of her responsibilities here.

This week I've declared as extra-special-good-care-week, so I've made an appointment to get my hair colored tonight and then later on in the week, it's nails and a pedi.

This afternoon, however, is carpet scrubbing while awaiting the cable guy. Sigh.

Take good care of yourself. Be kind to others. As Jinxx reminded me, Just Breathe!


Sunday, January 24, 2010

A Thousand Tiny Pieces

We were gone a little over an hour. We walked, quite literally, across the street and into a restaurant to have a couple of appetizers and split a dessert. By the time we returned, The Grand Beast had destroyed an amazing amount of stuff. My apartment looked like it had been ransacked. I'm still in shock, I think. No one expected it, although perhaps we should have. He'd been here with some or all of us for hours, had gone outside a couple of times, including a long walk in the park.

Here's a list of what he destroyed:

My leather briefcase
the contents of leather briefcase, including the box, receipt, and part of the USB modem that I was planning on returning for my money back tomorrow, after my cable/internet bundle is installed tomorrow

My new crossword puzzle book

My backpack and some paperwork that was in it

A new blanket I just purchased yesterday - he got it out of the bag and shredded it

My favorite shoes (just one) that just had reworked at the cobbler's

In chewing the aforementioned, just refurbished shoes (black) black shoe polish now covers a good deal of my carpet and I'm too wound up to go purchase some Resolve to see if that will work to remove it

For the briefcase and the shoe, he went into the closet to retrieve (there is no door).

The backpack and the blanket were on my bed.

The crossword puzzle book was on a side-table.

If we'd ordered an entree, no telling what would have destroyed. Puppysitting while they're on a ski trip? No way in hell.

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Puppy Power

For a refresher course, I'll give you this link. These are pictures of The GrandBeast, Pebbles' 145 pound dog. He is ill, but is doing better than expected on some new medication. He's still very happy and very active but because of his medication schedule, requires dosing about every four hours. So this means that tomorrow, The GrandBeast is making his first foray to visit GiGi at The Closet! Pebbles and Slater are meeting The ExBubba for lunch as The Ex is give Slater all his snowboarding gear - the newlyweds are heading to Utah for a snowboard trip (I wonder if they will ask me to keep TGB (money is on yes!). Then it's hanging out and dinner with me, so the dog will be dropped off when they hit town.

TGB had been a part of a rather shaky custody arrangement with Guy, Pebbles' former, as he worked from home, had a fenced backyard and another dog to keep each other company, but things have changed and Guy isn't at home as much and is understandably tired of being tied down with most of the day to day stuff. Guy's been a real trooper through all of this and he and Pebbles have really tried to do what was best for TGB. Anyway, work is work, and Guy's work is keeping him away more and more, so TGB is primarily with Pebbles and Slater. And I expect, me. I did talk to The Closet's management and said this was a possibility and was given the okay without any sort of deposit, so there you go. I THINK there will be enough room for both of us in here!

So I'm planning an afternoon walking in the park with TGB. I don't know if he's ever been on an elevator, so we may end up walking down through the parking garage. We'll just see how it goes. I tell you one thing - if you want to meet people, TGB is the lure, for sure. He's so huge that people do stop and take notice.

My weekend is sort of off to a rockyish start due to poor planning and lack of good follow-through, but I'll just do the next right thing and move right on. I'm going up to Bick's to meet up with some friends of ours for lunch and then we are all going fabric shopping for some drapery material for Bick's new curtains. The wife has agreed to sew up some simple drapes, if Bick can find some material he likes. Bick in a fabric store - someone should sell tickets!

And did you know that the first three seasons of The Bob Newhart Show are available on HULU? I did watch a couple of episodes last night - the clothes and decor are frightening, but the writing and the jokes are still just as good. Loved it.

Take good care of yourself. Be kind to others. Walk your dog. You'll both love it.


Friday, January 22, 2010

Adventures In Busriding

Whew! I cut it close this morning. I walked up the steps to the elevated street and right on the bus this morning. Okay, so time to move the out-the-door time to 7:43. 7:45 is cutting it just too close. Had an interesting interaction this morning as I was walking into the building at work. I arrived, but from another direction, just in time to hold the door open to the shuttle-bus-from-the-parking-lot riders. One woman asked me "Where do you park?" and I said "I ride the bus to work". She looked rather stunned and didn't say a word. Public transportation in this town is so not mainstream.

Got in some more gymtime last night. Just an hour walking on the treadmill. I had talked myself out of walking to the store, as I had enough leftovers to get me through last night and lunch today, but I was getting a bit maudlin, so it was time to get the hell out of the house, see other people and practice a little distraction. There are usually more people in the gym in the evenings. Plus, I watched some cable, which was nice.

Different topic: Set Point. Us longtime dieting folks have heard of this concept and if my experience is true, I do believe such a thing exists and do believe I am at it. Right in the low 150s is where my body just seems to want to be - at this level of exercise. I'm not complaining - I just find it interesting. It will be interesting to see how the increased walking changes this or if it does. Either way, I'm fine with it. Anyone else have experience with this? Do you have a set point?

Take good care of yourself. Be kind to others. Shake things up.


Thursday, January 21, 2010

Sure Happy It's Thursday

I need to get a pedometer to wear just to see how many steps I log during the day. Last night I rode the bus home and then walked over to the store to return yet another antenna and to pick up something for dinner. My plan is to do everything to keep myself out and about and walking through the neighborhood so I try to shop for my protein source each evening - something to throw on the Foreman grill. So last night, it was off to the store for dinner. So I'm both cooking and walking - all good things.

Extra good workout this morning and a smooth bus ride into the office today. I caught an earlier bus this morning and it was much closer to the actual bus schedule. Very cool. And the trip home last night was easy-breezy as well. Now I'm not going to sit here and say that I will ride the bus every day during all sorts of weather because I won't. But I'm going to try to do it as much as possible.

I haven't made any real firm plans for the weekend - Pebbles and Slater are supposed to come over one evening, but that's still up in the air. May do the stock show and/or a movie. Haven't made any plans to see Bick but that may or may not change.

Take good care of yourself. Be kind to others. Be Happy.


Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Paging Dr. Hartley! Paging Dr. Hartley!

I got a blast from the past yesterday that has really set My Crazy Brain all aflutter. While picking some items for dinner last night, I ran into the dad of one of my oldest Texas friends. We met at my first job when I moved here - back in June of 1979 - so it's a pinch over 30 years. We stayed best/close friends for about ten/fifteen years. Her life took some really bad turns and she became addicted to crack and did two prison stretches. Obviously, there was a lot of drama and I chose NOT to be a part of it. I last saw her about 5 years ago when she dropped by my house. She was out of prison, obviously, and clean and sober. She had just started working in sales for an energy company. I'd often wonder how she was doing, but chose never to look up her family to find out.

Last night, I found out. She's stayed clean and has been cleaning up in sales (she could always sell anything) has bought and paid for her condo here in town. Her dad said she was doing great, would love to get in touch and took down my info. She works out of town for a couple of weeks at a stretch, but has internet connections, obviously. He gave me her email info. And that was that.

Or so I thought. Obviously, having the thought of her back in my life - we'll call her Val - has really triggered some emotional crap for me. Jealousy? Feelings of inadequacy? Inferiority? I mean bucket loads of this stuff concerning every aspect of my life. The logical part of me knows that she is not judgmental so this is not about her - this is totally about me. Is it because we go so far back that she "knows where the bodies" are buried? Could be - but I'm pretty open about stuff, so it's not like it would be news to anyone if she told everything she knows. Am I jealous? It sort of feels that way, as she has always been very, very beautiful. But I have other very beautiful friends whose physical appearance doesn't cause this?

And it gets pettier - I bet she'll have a nicer car than me! WTF! I do not care about this stuff; it doesn't matter to me (with others at least) why does the prospect of reconnecting with her cause this? I'm guessing it's some sort of a flashback - as we've probably seen each other at our very worst. We've never shared a value system and it's never bothered me before, why now.

In any event, I'm following my new philosophy - "Don't just do something, sit there" until I can get a grip on what's going on with me here because I am not prone to bouts of this stuff. Lots of my friends have more/do more/more beautiful/more successful and it doesn't change how I view me or my life. And it's not like she was/is a "frenemy" nor do I think her toxic. This is just strange.

And I'd forgotten how much I loved The Bob Newhart Show. I think Suzanne Pleschette was about the coolest woman ever.

ETA: I chose NOT to be a part of the drama. Sheesh.

The Wheels on the Bus

I think the wheels are off the bus this morning. Rough night last night. Still with the 5 hours of sleep, then wide awake for a couple. I finally went back to bed a bit after 4am. Needless to say, I did not get up when my alarm trilled at 5:15 am. I got up at 7am. No workout. I was actually scheduled to leave for the bus stop at 7:40, but I gave up on that idea rather quickly. This was a "do my hair" morning - which I must admit is getting a bit easier. The lessons my stylist gave me certainly helped. I at least have a framework to start with. Anyway, so I just made the decision to catch the 8:26 bus - which arrived about 5 minutes late. I'm hoping the earlier in the schedule they are the closer to schedule they stay - but I guess these are the perils of public transport.

After actually catching the bus, it really is as fast as driving my ownself - especially when considering the time to either 1. wait for the shuttle from the parking lot to the building, or 2. make the hike myself. So there is not much difference in the time spent, if I can just pare down the pre-bus time.

Dinner with The Sister last night was great. Still no worky with the antenna. But we dined well. I fixed a grilled endive salad, with walnuts, roasted red pepper, blue cheese with a balsamic dressing. I also served roasted brocolli and pork chops. It was nice to have a decent meal and nice to cook for someone. Although I have discovered that I do not like The Closet's black appliances - too high maintenance! I don't mind the cleaning, but the polishing that's required to make them look nice after use is just too much.

Today's lunch class with be either spin or this - TNT (Tone-N-Tighten) – This is the ultimate resistance training workout. It will utilize dumbbells, body bars, tubing, and bands for a full body burn. I'll probably go for the TNT, since I did nothing this morning - which I think is a first since moving into The Closet. Hated to break the streak, but sleep is job one.

Pebbles is bringing me her bike as a loaner to see if I like riding a bike, so that is exciting.

And that's all I got.

Take good care of yourself. Be kind to others. Wheels off is no way to live.


Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Department of Transportation

Yesterday began with a good workout and several options for spending the day. I returned from my workout, fixed a bit of brunch and then set out on foot. I walked around the neighborhood again, finding a wonderful shop, guarded lovingly by a Great Pyrenese, where I could spend a veritable fortune. The danger is that I'll go back just to visit the dog! I also met another dog, Bailey, who belongs to the wine shop owner.

I then decided to take a test run on the bus to learn the ropes on getting to work. My work provides a bus pass as a part of our package.

It's very strange - I'm always excited to take public transportation in cities where it is the major mode of getting your ass around. Here, however, it's not main stream at all. So I had a bit of a mental hurdle to get over. I got to the bus stop after the bus had left, so I walked around the area for another half an hour. I then caught the bus to my work, exited there and trundled around through that area for another half hour or so. I caught the bus for home and completed the circuit. I was surprised at how few people the buses around here actually hold.

After that, I came back home, picked up the no-worky antenna and walked over the store to exchange it. I did that and picked up some groceries (bag of apples and a couple of pork chops) oh, and I bought a new water bottle. Darnit. I DID spend money yesterday on something besides food needs for the day. Forgot about that - but I'm forever searching for the water bottle that will help me drink more water. Because I've been hitting the caffeine hard and it's been hitting back.

For the last three nights I haven't slept well and it finally dawned on me last night that it's because of my nemesis, Diet Coke. Since Diet Coke is not longer a required mixer, I had been buying whatever soft drink was on sale. Yea, I know. Too much diet soda. So I'd been drinking diet orange soda in the evenings. Then Diet Coke went on sale, so I bought it. Dummy - it's the caffeine that's been keeping me awake. So I've got to get some no-caf stuff AND work on drinking more water instead.

Food and exercise were spot on until The Closet intervened. Stupid hospitality committee! I was all done with my very healthful dinner and was futzing around with iTunes/iPod/iSuck when there was a knock at the door. It was the Welcome to the Neighborhood folks from The Closet's management bringing me a basket of treats! Which I promptly devoured. Somehow this is not fair - bringing stuff to me. Disaster by room service. It wasn't a disaster, it was just junk that I should have left alone, but chose not to. Oh, well.

Had a good workout this morning and got to see the beginning of You've Got Mail, which I adore. So that certainly made the time go back in a pleasurable fashion. Today's lunch class is yoga. Then it's an afternoon dentist appointment. And no, I haven't been flossing three times a day as instructed. Crap.

But tomorrow, it's bus-time for me. My goal is to not sit my happy ass in MalibuKen until the weekend. We'll see how I do. So I'm trying to get any running around done this afternoon after my appointment.

My sister is coming over to see if she can figure out the whole tv/antenna thing. This is turning into a cluster. Anyways, I will fix dinner for my sis and I and that will be good. I wonder how she feels about grilled endive?

It's amazing how memory fades. In my mind, until I'd re-read this, I thought I'd done a good job of navigating my way through public transportation in Paris. Ha! Not so much, evidently.

Below is a recount of my Novemeber 2004 arrival in Paris - this is what happens when hillbillies travel :

My flights to Paris were lovely, but long. Very uncrowded, I had a row a three seats to myself on the trans-Atlantic flight. I arrived at CDG a few minutes ahead of schedule at about 7:30 am local time. I cleared customs and then went to get some Euros. I had tried to find some before leaving, but the banks didn't have any without a three day wait and I wasn't leaving from the international terminal at DFW, so I couldn't get any there. So, I just waited until I got to Paris. And just like I'd read in my travel guide, the ATMs at CDG were out of order. So, I waited in line forever to see the one person who could change my $50 USD into 35 Euros. My next stop was to find my bus (Roissybus) to the Paris city center. There was great signage, so I found my bus stop with no problem. The sign told me to go inside and buy my ticket from the automatic ticket machine. So I tried that. The machine would not read/accept ANY of my credit/debit cards. I was in a full-blown panic. What if none of my cards worked? Anyway, the sign said there was another ticket station in another terminal, but there was no way that I was going to try and find it. I decided to just try to buy my ticket from the driver, which I did with no problem. So that part of it went off okay. But it was two full hours after I landed before I finally left the airport grounds, so I was running late to meet Pebbles.

The bus (which costs about 8.50 euro, as compared to a 60 Euro cab ride) dropped me off in front of the Opera house. My guide book gave me specific instructions to take a left when I got off the bus, walk past the American Express office, go to the front of the Opera House and look for the Metro. I guess I expected signage, but I had a tough time finding the entry to the Metro, but I did find it. I managed to schlep my 48 pound bag down the stairs to the Madeline stop on line 8. My plan was to find and buy a carnet (group of 10) tickets, but again, I wasn't smart enough to figure out the ticket dispenser, so I just bought a single ticket from an actual person and headed out to the subway. And then I met the turnstyle that kidnapped my luggage. I walked through, but somehow the arm of the turnstyle went between the slats of my handle of the suitcase. It was totally stuck. I couldn't get back to buy another ticket to make the turnstyle turn. It was very frustrating and embarrassing, but I finally managed to jimmy and shimmy the suitcase free. Finally. So, I make my way to the train and board. I'm only a few stops away from my destination and the train is pretty desserted. I'm approaching my stop, so I stand up and get my backpack adjusted and a firm grip on my drag-behind suitcase. I'm standing in front of the door, the train has stopped, and nothing is happening where I am. I see that the doors at the center of the car are open, so I haul ass and baggage and barely escape the car. I later learned from Pebbles that there is a button to push or a handle to turn to open the doors. I had no idea; no other subway I'd ever been on had required manual intervention to get out.

I exited the subway station and there, just as I'd hoped was my hotel. I couldn't wait to get there and see Pebbles, as she was due to arrive in Paris one half-hour after I was, and wouldn't have any of the customs/baggage/bus delays that had plagued me. I went it, checked in, rode the world's smallest lift (room for just me and my suitcase standing side-by-side) and opened the door to my orange room. No Pebbles. I decided to go and wait for her by the subway exit. I'd seen a lovely park bench by the exit earlier. This Paris neighborhood (the 7th) was just everything that I'd expected Paris to be. Just lovely - so some time spent people-watching would be a good thing. I sat and waited for her for maybe a half an hour, but got cold, so I walked back to the hotel (not even 1/2 block) and added some layers and back out I went. I waited and waited and worried and worried. By this time, Pebbles is very, very late. I'd decided that she missed her train. I didn't have a clue how to make an international call from Paris, but I was so panicked, that I decided to brave an in-depth conversation with the scary desk clerk to find out how. I go back inside, and he tells me that my daughter is in the room. What? How did this happen? I'd been waiting for her? I went upstairs and had a wonderful reunion with Pebbles. She'd been there for 45 minutes - her train was late. And she had taken a different exit from the subway station, so she came at the hotel from a different direction. Crisis averted, but I had some real anxious moments there for a while. I did let go of any crazy notion I'd ever had about competing in The Amazing Race, I could barely navigate Paris, much less someplace less English-friendly.

So, we set off for the Eiffel Tower. Our hotel was about 1/2 block from the military school and the Champs du Mars. We told ourselves not to look for the tower until we got to the park and we took our first look. Wow. It was totally impressive to me. Much bigger than I had expected. So we walked through the park - it was a beautiful, clear, crisp fall day. It was truly autumn. We don't really have much of an autumn in Texas, so it was wonderful treat to walk through the fallen leaves up to the monument. The lines were long to go up, so we decided to save that for another time. We walked to the Seine, and then followed it all the way to the Musee d'orsay. Damn, what a place. The space itself was just fabulous, not to mention the lovely works there. We spent several hours there and found our way home via the Metro. It was about 5 in the evening by this time, so we just collapsed for a couple of hours. We got up and got dressed for dinner. I'd done some research at to find some good, but reasonably priced places to eat traditional French cooking. We walked to a lovely bistro in our neighborhood and enjoyed a nice meal at a window table. I believe we both had duck dishes. Very nice and reasonably priced and not overly touristy, or at least not that I could tell. We walked around the neighborhood some more, enjoying the views, the parks, around the Invalides and went back to our hotel and crashed yet again.

We stayed here. It was adequate for us. It was an eye opening experience for me, getting used to accomodations outside of the US. I was initially afraid that Pebbles would hate it, but she actually liked it. Said it was much better than many places she had stayed on her travels. The location, for us, was perfect. It was quiet, but that may have been more a factor of traveling off season than anything else. But damn, was it orange.

Thus concludes day one.

Take good care of yourself. Be kind to others. Some things worth having are worth waiting for.


ETA: I do not have an iPhone but an iPod that I cannot figure out how to download anything but music - I want a podcast and a tv show or two! Intuitive, my fat ass.

Monday, January 18, 2010

Making Room for Happiness

Today is the perfect day to focus on the things that make me happy. For the record, I was just sad yesterday and don't feel so great today, but it is certainly not the end of the world. I'm not upset or wailing or gnashing my teeth. I'm just experiencing some expected and appropriate grief, with a little g even. I'm really doing very well. So well, in fact, that I am certain that am doing the right things.

But I do believe what we choose to think about and how long we choose to think about it effects how happy we are. So after a little serenity prayering with "things I cannot change", I'm here today to make it a good day - starting off, thanks to fellow journeyers Anne H and Sandy, with a task of making a list (and being grateful for) the things that make me happy.

1. Obviously. Pebbles. I love her and I also like her a whole bunch (most of the time).
2. My Sister. Honestly, the funniest person I know. It appears we are going to survive "the troubles" okay. I'm in absolute heaven if I can get Pebbles and The Sister in the same room at the same time. Both hilarity and hijinx ensue.

The rest are in random order:

3. Warm, sunny January mornings - perfect for getting outside to walk around. I plan to take advantage of it today.

4. My boss. Superb human.

5. The Closet. I look around here and I love this little place.

6. Good coffee first thing in the morning. Those first few sips just might be my favorite part of every day.

7. Friendships. I'm new to this one. For a variety of reasons, I've been pretty isolated most of my life. So developing friendships, both in real life and online has been such a happiness builder.

8. Fine bed linens. I only allow myself one set at a time (I could go CRAZY) but I love the feeling of snuggling into some Tuesday Morning-purchased ridiculously high thread count sheets.

9. Yoga and Meditation: Learning so self-soothe and comfort and release anxiety from my life makes me happy.

10. Being creative. I don't always do this, but right now I'm getting an "urge". I've been looking to purchase an interesting rug for the kitchen floor, but I just haven't found what I like. I think it needs a funked-out penny rug and I think I'm going to make it myself.

11. Removing shame from my life to make room for happiness. After living a shame-based life, getting out from under it allows happiness to sneak in from a variety of areas.

I'm following Anne H's lead and passing this to everyone. Even if you choose not to post it, spend some time today reflecting on happiness.

Take good care of yourself. Be kind to others. Make room for happiness in your life.


Sunday, January 17, 2010

Reality TV

Sunday started with a sleepless night on Saturday night - being awaken by the party crowd coming home at 2ish and me being unable to return to sleep. I made the mistake of taking an Ambien at 3am. Consequently, I was too drowsy to get out of bed in time for church. So I enjoyed a lazy cuppa Joe or two and headed for the gym.

I got from home from the gym to find a call on my cell that Bick was on his way. He and Sadie Lu arrived a bit later. Sadie did not like coming to town and dealing with elevators and elevated walkways. But she was just fine once she got in The Closet. She knew this stuff, hell, most of it probably still has her dog hair on it. It wasn't long before I was covered in her dog hair too.

Bick and walked to a local place to get a burger and watch some of the game. This place was great. The outdoor patio was loaded on this warm and sunny January day. We left stuffed and happy. We walked back through the development, noting a couple of other retailers that are getting ready to open. We got SadieLu and headed out to buy and antenna for the new tv. And then we headed back to the park from yesterday. It was even more abuzz with activity today. Bick opined that they need an actual dog park and I really don't know why they don't have one. They have room for it and a lot of people bring their dogs and would welcome some off-leash time, I think. Anyway, we walked through the park and talked and it was nice.

We came back and tried the antenna to no avail. It only brings in one Spanish-language channel. I'm going to take back this antenna and try one other one and if that fails, then try to convince Mom and Sis to take it back. I do not want to have cable. It's been years since I've had it and I'm fine without it.

And then it was time for Bick to leave. And as we were saying goodbye, I just started to cry - really it's the first tears I've cried over this since the first week. It's all just so sad and unfortunate. I'm doing the right thing for me and I just have to acknowledge that it is sad. I'm sad for me and I'm sad for him. I look at him and know that he's hurting - and not just because of me. I can't say that I think alcohol brings him any pleasure anymore. He just thinks he can't live without it. So I am sad tonight, it's to be expected and I'm okay with it. I'll just be in this feeling and not attempt to hide from it or stuff it. This is life and sometimes it's sad. I'm not overwrought or depressed. Just a bit of wishing things hadn't turned out this way, I guess.

In the meantime, I'm continuing to do good things for me. I've got a medley of vegetables roasted and in the fridge. I'm making a Roxie-made-up recipe of eggplant parmesan faux-panini stacks. I've got a spaghetti squash roasting in the oven - all veg for use next week. I'd really let my vegetable intake drop down.

Speaking of vegetables, Bick did call upon his return home today to tell me that our brussels sprouts were LOADED. Evidently all the garden survived the hard freeze of last week just fine. So perhaps there will be some fresh brussels sprouts in my future.

Take good care of yourself. Be kind to others. Stay tuned in to your feelings.


Saturday, January 16, 2010

Mixing It Up

Great day, so far. Worked out first thing this morning. Bick decided not to come to town today, so after my CODA meeting, I headed to the resident monthly brunch held by The Closet's management. I met several other residents, which was nice. A couple of the people are opening businesses in the immediate area, so that was interesting to talk with them. One couple from the LA area, took early buyout options (they appear to be about my age), sold their house (before the crash) and then traveled around the country looking at places to live and to open their business. They chose here. I think their business is a franchise, but I am not sure. It's an ice cream type shop.

I also met the woman who has just opened a wine room here in the neighborhood. She has a fully producing vineyard as well, she's just opening the retail part of the venture. She has organized an event at her wine room - a 6 minute walk away - for the residents later on in the month. She is probably in her early 30's. How brave is that? She's done the sommelier school/internship/etc winemaking apprenticeship, plus some other things I can't recall and now she's opening this place. I hope she is wonderfully successful.

I did learn something about The Closet at the brunch. The Closet is a "blue door" which means not premium. I was asked at brunch if I was in the premium section - I said that I certainly didn't think so. I think I'm probably about as low as one could go here - actually, I think there is one floor plan smaller than mine. But seriously, as I heard Rick Steves say on his radio program today - if you are sailing the Nile, it really doesn't matter if it's on a $50,000 boat or a $5M yacht - the experience of the Nile is still the same. I don't know if I quite believe it, but as far as enjoying the location, I get to enjoy it just as much as the "orange doors".

After brunch, I came back to The Closet, got into my walking clothes and set out to walk around my neighborhood. I really hadn't done much of that since moving in. But today I timed my walk to the bus stop (9 minutes - I thought it was MUCH closer) and then headed to the park/river. What a great outing! While the sun wasn't really shining, it was warmer than it has been and the wind wasn't blowing. There were cyclists and runners, walkers and dogs, families and fishermen all enjoying this great public space. It was just awesome! I can't wait to go back out - perhaps tomorrow after church/meditation class.

So I'm heading out to make another pass at picking up my SHOES! I went by this morning to pick them up but they were not ready. They'd promised them on Friday, but are running behind. Then it's off to my favorite grocery store to load up on the veg. I'm planning on coming home and setting to roast a week's worth. I'm now trying to follow my own advice and choose what I will eat when making the decision is easy. I may take my own self to a movie tonight. I do want to see Up In The Air.

Dinner last night with my mom and sister was very nice. They showed up with a new, small flatscreen television for me. Sigh. So, I now have a tv, even though I had no plans to acquire one. This living/learning year-long experience won't amount to much if I spend it inside watching television, which is a trap I can easily fall into. So I think they were disappointed in my lack of over-the-top enthusiasm for my gift. I tried to get them to return it and get their money back, but to no avail. I guess I don't have to plug it in.

That's all I've got for now.

Take good care of yourself. Be kind to others. Mix it up.


Friday, January 15, 2010

It's Complicated

Saw the movie last night at GNO and loved it. It was the perfect movie for people of a certain age. I don't know how it will play to the younger audience, but I for one, welcomed Alec's "stout" and hairy body, Meryl's laugh lines, plus lots of other "more-real" touches than one normally sees from Hollywood.

GNO was fun. The Closet has made her debut as a noshing destination. The girls brought too much stuff, plus I overdid it on preparing the tidbits, so I've invited my mom and sister over for dinner tonight - speaking of complicated relationships!

Nice workout today. I plan to go to either a pilates or a spin class today at lunch. I cannot decide.

Tentative weekend plans include Bick and SadieLu coming in on Saturday night and us catching a movie and dinner on Saturday and church on Sunday. I've got CODA on Saturday morning, followed by a trip to ransom all my shoes from the cobbler! Yay! Shoes! Then it will be off to the grocery store to load of up veg for the week. I've got a three day weekend, so I may WALK over to the stock show and catch a bit of that. I'll have to look over the schedule of events. I love the smell of a horse barn in the morning. Seriously.

I didn't overindulge last night, so I'm not quite so bloating and crabby today.

Take good care of yourself. Be kind to others. Uncomplicate your life.


Thursday, January 14, 2010

No Rain

Thanks to Diana and Sandra for the recent awards. I'll satisfy the requirements over the weekend if that's okay. The Happy Award asks that I list ten things that make me happy. Pictured here is the top of the list. Here's my darling daughter in her Halloween costume at the ER getting her foot looked after. While she has the ability to get on my very last nerve, I'd fight a circle saw for her.

As for food, well, I've got to get a grip! Last evening was another over-eating night. I've not been planning as I have in the past, so this weekend, it's back to the grocery store to stock up on foods that are good for me. After GNO, I'm hopefully that the not-good-for-stuff is GONE. I'll know not to buy ahead of time next time I do this. I've got to follow my own advice and make the decisions when they are easy, not when they are staring back at me from the fridge.

So today, I'm feeling the physical hangover of, not a binge, but just overeating. Hate waking up that way. Oh well. Enough of that.

Take good care of yourself. Be kind to others. Do all that you can to make yourself happy.


Wednesday, January 13, 2010


Here's a picture of the hallway outside The Closet. I think all the units on this row are filled, save the one beside me. I promise to take and post some pictures of the interior when I get it done. It's pretty close. I've got a couple of spots that need some attention, but other than a couple of throw pillows, I think I'm done for now. The finishing touches, the personal touches will come to me. I don't have to go looking for them.

One of the (obvious) things that has occurred to me recently is that I, 1. have pretty much spent a lifetime of putting other people's needs and wishes ahead of my own and 2. I have a habit of denying myself anything that costs money (save travel). These two things became obvious based upon a couple of occasions. The first one had me in Marshall's, carrying around a $12.99 frying pan trying to decide if I should spend the money on it. I carried that damn thing around the store for twenty minutes before putting it down and leaving empty handed. I decided that I really didn't "need" it. And while that my technically be true, I have a one-egg sized frying pan, it's certainly not going to serve my needs for any length of time. The second incident is even more telling. I was sitting in The Closet in my sweats, with socks and slippers and a lap robe and I was still cold. I sat there and was uncomfortable but was unwilling to turn up the heat because how expensive would the electric bill be? Honest to god - it's a 500ish square foot place. How expensive could it possibly be?

This got me to thinking that for a lifetime, I denied myself things and even comfort because of someone else's needs, dysfunction, or wants. Now I do think that frugality and thrift ARE virtues, but I can let up a little. I know that much of this is a reaction to the upbringing by a compulsive shopper, being married to a spendthrift and being under mountains of debt for so long. But I can afford a little extra bump in the thermostat and a $12.99 frying pan. It's all in the mindset and getting comfortable - finding the balance.

ETA: I did recognize the fact that I was being silly and turned up the stinking heat...and I did buy myself a whole new set of pots and pans. I was just paralyzed for a little while ;-)

I'm certainly not advocating extravagance as a lifestyle, but a little self-care and allowing myself to think of myself, and myself only, is okay.

Great workout this morning. There were actually two other people in the workout room this morning! Looks like The Closet is getting more neighbors. I did have the distinct pleasure of watching the beginning of Sleepless In Seattle. It made me smile. I would have been singing along with Satchmo during the opening credits, but I wasn't alone in my workout.

I've taken to sleeping in my sports bra at night - it makes getting out of bed and getting dressed for the workout less chilly. And yes, I'm the female equivalent of a never-nude. Plus, I do need to learn how to program my thermostat to kick up the temperature at getting-up time.

I'm scheduled for this workout today: TNT (Tone-N-Tighten) – This is the ultimate resistance training workout. It will utilize dumbbells, body bars, tubing, and bands for a full body burn. I'm going, but I plan to take it really easy. I do not want an injury.

Take good care of yourself. Be kind to others. Be selfish if you need to be.


Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Crazy Busy

I've got hair like Kay Bailey and eyebrows like Jim Wright - but I don't see a political future for me :-)

I went to a wonderful pilates class yesterday and will attend another activity class today. I did a shortened workout this morning in order to have time to fix my hair! I am so not girly when it comes to this stuff. I did okay for my first try, but then again, I probably cared more this morning than I will the next time. We'll see.

Horrible, horrible eating day yesterday. It all began with lack of planning and preparation on my part and just went downhill from there.

I did get my computer back, good as new.

I'm stressing a bit too much about GNO at The Closet. No one really cares that much about anything except getting together. I need to just do what makes sense - food, drink and decorating wise - and leave the rest alone.

Work is crazy-busy and will continue to be so for a while. I still have something to say about self-care/denial, but that will have to wait.

Take good care of yourself. Be kind to others. Plan for success.


Monday, January 11, 2010

Weekend Update: The Random

Okay, the hair pictures didn't turn out very well, but here's one.

I took my shoes to the cobbler. Turned out I took too many, now I have no appropriate shoes to wear to work this week.

My laptop was eaten up by a virus and completely shut down. I've taken it to be shocked back to life.

Went with Bick as he was shopping for new living room curtains. We went to six stores, plus online and he didn't find a thing he liked.

Attended a meditation class on Sunday morning at the same church I attended last week. It was really nice. I enjoyed the group setting and energy.

Did not want to get up this morning. Bed was too cozy. I did not go work out. I will go at lunch.

Spent some time decorating The Closet. Pictures are closer to happening.

Had some epiphanies regarding self-care and self-denial. Will write about those later.

Take good care of yourself. Be kind to others. Get out of bed.


Saturday, January 9, 2010

Baby It's Cold Outside

First, the bad news. I ate everything I could run down and catch yesterday. Haven't had a day like that in a while and didn't see it coming. Next Monday, exercise classes at lunch begin again and I'm committed to restarting those. I've been exercising every morning, but I will add some fun variety including more yoga classes.

In more productive news, I've got internet access now at The Closet! I've configured it so that I will even have access when I ride the bus to work. I'm using the new WiMax option that just rolled out to DFW.

I'm also sporting a new haircut. I'll post pictures on Monday, as I made the stylist take my photo as I suck at taking self-portraits. I know it looks better than it did, but I do not know why stylist want to give me sleek, Kay Bailey hair. I am not a sleek, Kay Bailey kind of woman. I guess it's when you get to be a certain age. I think it looks good on me, but if I can't do it myself, than it really doesn't help much. Oh well. I liked the guy and the salon was very welcoming and comfortable. So I'll go back. I cannot let myself go like that anymore. I cannot remember the last haircut I had. Oh, and the good news is that he said my hair was in fine shape and that I could color it again. And I think I will. I had this vision of me resembling my grandmother. Not the internal vision one wants to carry around. Grandma wore her long, uncut hair in that "strange religion" way and the older I get, the more I look like her. Our faces appear to be falling in the same way. Oh well. Cannot worry about what I cannot change.

I also got my legal stuff all squared away and completed. That's a load off, for sure. I also did a little bit of buying of stuff for The Closet and I already don't like half of it. I'll return and retry today.

I'm going to brew myself a cup of coffee, head off to the gym, then to a CODA meeting, followed by a trip to the Home Depot to get the stuff to hang up stuff. I cannot wait for Pebbles to make a reappearance. They make special things for hanging up stuff in drywall, right? I'll check out the internets for some instruction.

Oh, and based upon Bick's recommendation, I watched some of the PBS show, This Emotional Life via my new WiMax. Interesting stuff on the search for happiness. I recommend it.

Take good care of yourself. Be kind to others. Every day is a new start.


Friday, January 8, 2010

Reading Rainbow

This is command central at The Closet. It's also my reading chair. I need some reading recommendations that will be readily available at my local library. I want fluff. Fluffy, funny, chick-lit(ish), light reading. I do not want to grow, learn or be inspired. I do not want to cry.

Give me the goods!

Morning Brew

Here's a picture of the coffee I brought back from PR. While you can buy pretty much anything you want from the states, coffee doesn't seem to be on the available list. PR actually grows their own and I assume that's why there are no imports allowed. Turns out, this is pretty good coffee. I just finished the last of it this morning before heading out in the two degree wind chill factor morning to walk across the street to the gym. My face hurt by the time I got there. I don't know how you notherners do it. I'm from the PNW, but bitter cold was a rarity.

Good workout this morning - a combo of elliptical, running and walking. Nice way to start the day coming on the heels of another good night's sleep. Yay for ceiling fans, earplugs and sleep masks. I seem to have solved the ambient temperature issue as well to get it and keep it cold enough at night, but not too cold.

I'm off to the lawyer this afternoon to make Pebbles an heiress(ha!) if something were to happen to me. Turns out, getting all the legal stuff - wills, medical poa, living will and POA, doesn't cost an arm and a leg if it's simple. Seriously, if you don't have all of this stuff in place, get it done. Your kids will love you for it. As the daughter of a man who died at a very young age, unexpectedly and intestate, you do not want to do this to your kids. Get your stuff together. Call around and ask for attorney recommendations and get something down on paper about your wishes, both financial and medical. End of PSA.

Bought myself a new crossword puzzle book last night and enjoyed working a puzzle. Boy, am I rusty!

Plans for the weekend include The Haircut of Desperation, CODA meeting, putting clothes away into dresser and staying warm. I am also planning to host some girlfriends for Girls Night Out on Thursday, so a little prep for that.

Take good care of yourself. Be kind to others. Make your wishes known.


Thursday, January 7, 2010

The Piazza at The Closet

Here's a picture of my morning walk from my building to the other building that contains the workout room.

Feeling a bit better than yesterday. Pebbles came back through town last night and we had dinner and did some planning/shopping. I did find a great deal on some new pots and pans. I'd taken just one small skillet (fry one egg) sized from Bick's and I needed some more. So now I have pretty shiny pots and pans on my borrowed baker's rack. Pebbles came in and took some pictures of The Closet to help me with my desire for a warm, yet slightly sophisticated look for the place. I'm excited to get it finished. We are currently negotiating on paint color for the an accent wall. I don't want to have to pay a ton of money to have the place repainted after I move on.

Got in a good workout on the elliptical this morning. I'm slowly bumping up the intensity of my workouts. Felt good.

Update on Bick: He is not in rehab. He's appears to be more concerned right now about his blood pressure and depression than he is his alcoholism. So he's taking his bp (he's on meds) several times a day with the intention of taking this information to his doc later this month. His plan is to review his bp data, request anti-depressants and "get to feel better about himself" before tackling the drinking. He says he's going to discuss his options with his doctor - he wants and probably needs medically-supervised detox.

This is where I get into trouble. I try to predict HIS future and HIS choices. I just have to let it be. That way is folly for a codependent. He is entirely responsible for his choices and I cannot fix this for him. I'm just trying to stay in the here and now. Pebbles comment about limbo is that I've placed myself in a situation where I am really not getting on with my life if I'm still having any sort of contact with him. That I will not fully move on - not that I want to at this time. I'd really like him to get sober AND deal with his underlying issues.

Bottom line is that I may not be making the perfect decisions right now, but I have the opportunity to make different ones in the future. For now, this is okay. I'm still trying to keep my side of the street clean; giving too much thought to him and our "future" keeps me out of the present.

Take good care of yourself. Be kind to others. I do not have to be perfect.


ETA: Today is the day I'm coming clean at the office about the recent changes in my life. I've kept things quiet up to now just to let this be about Pebbles, rather than me. My workmates regard Pebbles as one of theirs, as she's practically been raised here. Not fun. But so far, no tears either.

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Hello, It's Me

Snapped this picture of my new doormat this morning. And then heard Todd Rundgren on the way to work this morning. I'm sensing a theme.

Pebbles came by this a.m. and brought me her baker's rack and the chest of drawers that matches her/my bedroom suit. It's the first time I've seen her since getting back from PR.

I'm having a sad day today. For reasons that I can't really explain. Well, actually I can. Pebbles said something to me about putting myself in limbo with Bick and it made me incredibly sad. I guess that is to be expected.

Got another good night's sleep last night and hit the workout facility this morning. Got in some mileage. One foot in front of the other. Remember, it's not so much the speed as it is the direction.

Take good care of yourself. Be kind to others. Sadness is a part of life.


Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Roxie Explains It All

Since it has come to my attention (I'm such a Luddite) that the responses/comments I'd been sending out via email for godknowshowlong do not go actually work, I thought I'd open this up to a Q&A. My email address is listed to the left. If there is anything you want to know or have explained, just ask. I'll do my best to answer.

Pic is of Pebbles, Paris (P's former roommate) and me taken at the play in mid-December. I'm looking pretty beleagured in this photo - I think I was still living at the motel. We did not color-coordinate in advance.

Office Space

Well, not really office space, it's more of a living space issue. I'm still adjusting to life at The Closet. I spent some time last night moving stuff around. Looks like the fridge will serve double-duty as more of a pantry as well. I'm moving things around to be more efficient and workable for me. I have to acknowledge my own habits and tendencies and find solutions that work for me that allow me to keep the clutter tiger at bay. In a space this small, a stray anything says clutter and makes my living space less peaceful.

I have not always been decluttered or even a decent housekeeper. For years, I was horrible at it - not understanding the connection that it had to me and my peace of mind. I had so much stuff that no one could possibly keep it all organized and smart looking. One of my first steps to slaying this dragon (at my old home, Reata South) was to move my work clothes closet to the coat closet. My tendency was to come home from work and just start peeling off hose, heels, and business suit and leave them where they fell. I finally got smart and put my closet right at my front door - at least things got hung up! It was one of the smartest things I ever did - it helped me break a bad habit and started the change in behaviors.

Last night I went back through all my big-girl paperwork and organized my files. I've got some adult goals for this month - getting my will, POA, living will, etc signed (appointment on Friday) and getting all my paperwork together and get it to Meg for my formal financial plan. I'm feeling a bit wonky with moving into the new place, the vacation, the wedding, etc. I am looking forward to when things get back to whatever normal turns out to be this year.

Got in gym time this morning. Slept for SEVEN hours last night - yee haw! Look forward to having a great day today. I harvested some of the spinach from the garden when I was at Bick's on Sunday and made myself a spinach and egg-white omelet for breakfast this morning. I don't know that the garden and all the glorious brussels sprouts will survive this week's deep freeze. Unfortunately, the sprouts weren't ready for harvest and I don't know that Bick has the want-to to cover things up this time.

Totally off-topic: Technical type question - I get comments sent to me as emails. When I reply to comments, do you actually get them? For example, I did a lot of replying yesterday, but I am unsure that it actually works. If you got an email reply from a comment, please let me know.

Take good care of yourself. Be kind to others. Recognize your tendencies.


Monday, January 4, 2010

Surveying The Landscape

Well, hell's bells. Came in to work this morning and immediately scarfed down the homemade pralines left to me by a coworker. How's that for resolve? Sheesh. Oh well. Onward and onward.

Yesterday was a lovely day. I enjoyed the church services - yesterday was the burning ceremony - where you write down all the things you want to leave behind and then throw them into a bowl to be burned up. In addition, you write down the things you want to replace the things that you are leaving behind - in my case, old resentments, obsessive thoughts, manipulation, and excessive need for validation. All of that crap to be replaced with my expanded theme "To be present as my best self for my best life: a year of urban renewal".

Thanks for the notes, both public and private on external validation. Obviously I am not the only one who craves/needs/suffers. And enjoying ego strokes isn't wrong - I got some yesterday from my friends and I loved them. My problem is when I am like the "Shop of Horrors" plant saying "Feed Me!" and would resort to desperate attempts to secure said validation, either by word or deed. If it's offered freely, then take it and wallow in it. If I have to use manipulation to get it, then there's some self-esteem that's missing in me.

Wonderful lunch with the friends yesterday (way too much soul food) and had a nice dinner at Bick's last night. Was able to pick up a few things up there to bring home. Up a bit late this morning, but I did manage to get some gym-time in before work.

Take good care of yourself. Be kind to others. Look around and learn what is really going on.


Sunday, January 3, 2010

Sunday Morning Sidewalk

Drug out the yoga mat this morning and spent some time getting a good stretch on. Yummy! Headed off to the gym for a walk on the 'mill.

I'm now learning that I cannot spend too much time in the STBX - too much caffeine! May be a contributing factor to my sleeplessness. Plus, too many debits! So I may investigate getting internet service piped into The Closet. No cable, though.

Had a nice day yesterday. I needed to run out to Reata South (Mom's) to get a drill to use for hanging the drapes. Ended up having a low-key, fun visit with her and my sister.

Came home and hung the drapery hardware and the drapes. Today I shall redo it, as I didn't measure and just assumed a standard window height. If my interior designer (Pebbles) were to see the drapes a foot off the floor, she would surely clutch her pearls, and break flat out into a rash. So, I'm going to have to raise the hardware to have the curtains just graze the bottom of the sill. I'm NOT prepared to buy new, longer drapes.

As for pictures of The Closet, I still need to get the art hung. Oh how pretentious does that sound? Art! Art my ass. I've got some posters I need to put up on the walls with something other than duct tape and pre-chewed Hubba Bubba. After that's done, then I'll get some pictures taken. I'm also waiting for Pebbles to bring me her baker's rack and a dresser that doesn't fit in her place. I left all my bedroom furniture at Reata South and Mom is using it. I'm now using Pebbles' stuff, as she bought a king-sized bed. Talk about a fruit basket turnover. Right now I have one tiny closet in the closet and all my folding clothes are in cardboard boxes. Holy crap, that's classy! Oh, and another good thing that came out of the trip to Mom's was that I asked if they had an extra vacuum cleaner and so I get my old Oreck back. So now I don't have to buy one! Saves me some dough. I'm going out to Bick's this afternoon for an early dinner and to pick up a few more things to help feather this new nest.

I received a lovely invitation to join the Poolville Pagans at their church for some ceremony today, followed by lunch. I may just take them up on the offer. I know that they know about my change in circumstances. In talking with Bick yesterday, he said he had spoken with them and told them.

I've got just enough time to read a few blogs, do some strategic planning for work, get cleaned up in time to make church/lunch. The curtain repositioning may or may not happen.

Take good care of yourself. Be kind to others. Ask for what you need.


Saturday, January 2, 2010

Off To A Good Start

Got up and got my morning workout in. I was in the workout facility this morning when the power went out of the whole building. Evidently it did something funky to the elevators even after it came back on. Luckily for me, I'd decided yesterday to take the stairs as often as possible when leaving the building(s) on foot, so I'd found the way out via staircase. Being stuck in an elevator is NOT a good way to start the new year.

I ran some more errands yesterday - still trying to get life settled here in The Closet. I also went window shopping - Pier 1 was having a spectacular sale. I had to back slowly away from the store. Dangerous and it's in walking distance. Luckily for me, I'd have to carry home whatever I'd purchase, so that will be my deterrent.

Today's task is to get the curtains put up in the bedroom area. I overlook the patio space and there is a light that shines in, even though I have blinds. I have curtains and rods, but I need to go buy the hardware to put it up. Sleep needs to be my first priority. I'm still acclimating to The Closet - trying to find the perfect ambient temperature for knocking around and for sleeping. Last night I turned the ceiling fan on and it provided a nice amount of noise, so outside noises were much less loud.

I intended to make a CODA meeting this morning. I'm changing groups, I think. The Saturday meeting is women only. Unfortunately, I was sure it began at 10:00. Of course, it started at 9:00, so I missed it. There is always next week.

Tomorrow I plan to go into the office for a couple of hours to get some strategic planning done. The work project will eat my lunch if I don't stay on top of it.

Random reflection on 2009: Probably the most important thing that happened to me last year was my realization and understanding my need for external validation. I don't know how I'd missed that for so long, but understanding my tendencies will help me deal with this more appropriately in the future. It's pretty liberating, for sure.

That's all I got for now. I'm going to read a few more blogs and then it's off to the hardware store.

Take good care of yourself. Be kind to others. You are enough.


Friday, January 1, 2010

Going on Walkabout

I just realized that for the first time in years, I do not live on a gravel road. As a matter of fact, I've only NOT lived on a gravel road for about seven of my 49 years. So this begins the chronicle of my year in the city. My theme for the year will be to be present for each day. This year I will concentrate on my own "Urban Renewal" project - on all fronts.

I know there will be challenges and there will be days that I feel like I'm failing, but I will also try to remember that I am enough. I am fine, right now, today and I will continue to be so.

I've set some of my intentions for year on the left side-bar. I also braved the scale this morning. Actually, it was a bit better than I'd expected. I've not been vigilant since the luncheon on December 12.

Life at The Closet is LOUD. Since it's got so much concrete every sound is amplified. My bed is on an outside wall and I can hear everyone walking by. And last night, there were a lot of people walking by! It may be time for a sound machine! I did start the new year off with some treadmill time at the very empty fitness room. My plans for the rest of the day include some more straightening up of The Closet, as I came home rather like a hurricane yesterday.

Take good care of yourself. Be kind to others. Set an intention.


Completely off topic but totally bizarre: I got an exotic Snuggie and a BBgun from my Mom for Christmas. Whisky Tango Foxtrot!