change

Just like starting over

Posted on Updated on

Remember when you were young, and the future felt like some distant place that would never really happen.  You felt light, and easy, optimistic and somewhat care free and in love?

Well we have reached the future and even with all our burdens, and all my processing of issues, I feel like everything is new and possible again.

So I am dedicating the following to the love of my life, my handsome husband.

Our life together is so precious together
We have grown, we have grown
Although our love is still special
Let’s take a chance and fly away somewhere alone

It’s been too long since we took the time
No-one’s to blame, I know time flies so quickly
But when I see you darling
It’s like we both are falling in love again
It’ll be just like starting over, starting over

With our new fixer-upper home, we have a lot of work in front of us, but I see this and everything else, as a brand new start.  It is a wonderful adventure that we will take together every step of the way.  Who ever thought we would be here now?  It’s feakin’ awesome.

I love you Ray. xo

late 1986 - of coarse see the hair!

Take a listen to this…..”No one ca get in the way of what I am feeling…”

Help them now.

Posted on

A person can only be pushed so far.

I really do not know how people do it.  How do people continue on peacefully when the world around them is crumbling?

Last week a young mother was shot dead in the middle of the afternoon.  From what I understand there was a fight going on between two groups of girls.  Someone pulled out a gun, shots were fired, and people ran away.  This young mother was running away, to save her life.  It didn’t work.

This was in a neighborhood of housing.  People live there, sleep there, laugh there, feed their children and sing lullabies.  Yet outside at any given moment someone can be shot dead in the middle of the afternoon.

I am so touched by this story, and so entirely confused as to why this violence  is allowed to continue.  Is it because these people are poor? Is it our cities failing to make security and safety a priority?  Is it the crumbling school system, or the rarely existence family support? Is it caused by the onset of  the gun culture?  Or is it really because the rest of the city and surrounding suburbs just don’t give a sh*t?

We need to take a moment and wake the f*ck up.

_____

Since writing this many months ago, a terrible shooting happened in a small quaint town of about 5000 named Chardon, not too far from Cleveland.  One morning before classes started, three students were shot dead.  A 4th student  is recovering in the hospital and the fifth shooting victim is recovering at home.  Three young people shot dead in cold blood by a 17 year old student.

I have pondered the effects of the school shooting and nothing I come up with makes any sense except that we the people have to start caring about each other.  We need to teach kindness, and tolerance.  We need to teach the basics of  right from wrong in our homes.  We need to be reminded that people can be cruel and bitter, but usually because they are in a painful place, and they need help. We need to do all we can to build bridges in stead of walls.

We need schools that are safe.  And if that means we need police there, then put police there.  If it means we need metal detectors then place the detectors are the door ways.  We need to take bullying seriously, and we need to listen to our children, especially if they are saying something that sounds off-base or unusual.

We need to wake up to the fact that there are drugs in every school.  It’s a fact kids drink and drive, and they have parties and drink their parents booze.  Students cheat on test and make trades for homework, and just like always they have unprotected sex.

Parents need to get their heads out of the sand.  School administrators need to be fair and consistent when enforcing the school codes.  No more hiding the dirty little secrets.

We need to recognize that all students are not the same, some are gay and some students are homophobic.  Students are every race and racism is alive and well in America.  These are issues that continuously harm our society as a whole.  And if we want it to change, each one of us has to personally stand up and say enough is enough.

Regardless of differences each child deserves an education in an environment that is safe physically and emotionally no matter what it takes.  And they are not going to get it unless we demand it.  They need us now, not later.

Start a conversation, let your voices be heard.

I have never

Posted on Updated on

It’s difficult to believe this but I have never sat in a coffee shop alone with my laptop. I have never gone to a library to read. I’ve only once gone to a sit-down restaurant by myself.

I’m no spring chicken. I have done many many other things that maybe someone else hasn’t done. But seriously the simple things are foreign to me.  I never felt I had the luxury of time to do these things, or I would tell myself ,  “I can do that at home.”  Doing simple things at home is never the same as doing them else where, and they rarely happen.

I remember on one vacation I was happy to cook everyone breakfast, no matter what time they woke up.  Looking out the kitchen window there nothing but beach between me and Pacific Ocean.  I determined I could cook there non-stop. At home I might say to the late risers, “I’ve been up for five hours I just had lunch.”

Here is the key, when you get home, there’s always something tugging at you. If not physically then mentally. At least in my case there is. Considering what lives at home off and on; two dogs, two cats, three children, a husband and my mother, tugging at me comes as no surprise.  That’s another reason I am heading to minimalism less stuff to even consider or clutter your thoughts.  You don’t have to bother yourself with items that have to be stored, or saved for another time, or cleaned and repaired.  No.  No Mas. The time is now.

Time to change it up a bit.

I figure I can spare one hour a day, with a minimum of travel time on either side.  So lets make it two hours.  Two hours instantly scares me into thinking I cant do this.  But I know I can if I really want it.  If I want it more than doing laundry today, or lingering on the internet,  I can spare some time to hang with nature.  That’s what I like to do.  You might like something totally different.  Maybe you won’t get to it exactly at the time you wanted, but if you want it, you can get there.

Time to let yourself know, you make the your decisions.  Face it, when we make excuses many times we still don’t even do “the excuse” of why we couldn’t do what we wanted.  Time sucks are everywhere.  You need to identified and destroy those time-leaks.

For a while I was taking the dogs to the park , throwing down a blanket and sketching with my colors pencils and reading.  With this small outing, took my hectic-life and I made it stop.  I was there.  Nothing else was allowed to tugged at me.  It was pretty awesome.

Start simply: here’s an idea you can do at home tonight.

How about a  luxury bath?  Even if you don’t usually take baths, try this on for size; 2 cups of Epsom salts, 1 cup of baking soda, and 10 drops of lavender oil to bathwater as hot as you can tolerate.

I am doing this tonight.  I think I will light a few candles as well.  Love to hear how you like it , if you do it.

Cheers!

Tip: Start small, little changes every day is the best way to change your life, but don’t allow yourself to miss even one day no matter what.

Inspiration: “Do not dwell in the past, do not dream of the future, concentrate the mind on the present moment.”- Buddha

One day – one thing: Take ten minutes, close your eyes and visualize your life as you want to live it.

Waiting

Posted on Updated on

Waiting is hard.

Have you ever found yourself waiting and getting irate, grumpy or even snippy. It’s all a waste of your time life. You end up hurting those around you and also making everyone miserable including yourself.

Right now we are still waiting on our final contract to buy this house Project1923. We have signed everything but they made one error on the original, and boom everything stopped. One box was checked incorrectly. I could finish that correction in a nano second, but we are dealing with people who have thousands of these deals hitting their desks everyday. We dealing indirectly with Freddie Mac, they own the majority of the foreclosures. The banks just unload those properties to the government. We were warned. Everybody told us that it’s nearly impossible to deal with them.

Before we notice that incorrectly checked box, we were working at rapid speed. They “required” a 24 hour turn around from us, and we gave it to them. Unfortunately, they made a mistake. And now we wait. They have to correct it, and send it to us. Whenever they get to it.

Tick tock. Tick tock.

This is were I am working really hard at patience. I try not to think about it. I just tell myself everything will be okay. And actually to my own surprise I am not at all concerned or worried. I think time and life events have beat me into submission. I can recall so many instances waiting. Usually waiting for something so important that I could not sleep or eat. And now, I don’t give it much thought.

Why? you ask. Because I can not do a damn thing to change it. I couldn’t change any of my previous “waits” either.

This is one of the many keys to life. I would classify this as a big huge key to life. I am not an alcoholic but AA sure has it covered with that “Serenity Prayer” they quote.

So let it go if you can not control it. As you practice this habit of letting go over time you will come to the realization there is very little in life you actually control. That is, except your very own peace of mind. Think about it. Then live it.

I guarantee you will love it.

Cheers!

Tip: Practice being the person who doesn’t make sour faces while waiting in line, smile instead.

Inspiration:” Gratitude is one of the sweet shortcuts to finding peace of mind and happiness inside. No matter what is going on outside of us, there’s always something we could be grateful for.”- Barry Neil Kaufman

One day – one thing: Patrice breathing at stop lights; count to 2 as you inhale- to 4 as you exhale, and increase as you are able.

Sale time, yet again

Posted on Updated on

I am getting pretty good at organizing garage/house sales, and brother do I kill it with the signs.

I use Craig’s list and signs on major intersections.  That’s it.  I have a sale kit with a staple gun and signs and wire stands from old political signs.  All you have to do is take the political sign off the wire holder and turn it inside out and tape your awsome sale sign to the plastic.  So easy, and they go into the ground perfectly.

I never hold my sale if the weather is bad, and now because you can place ads for free at a moments notice that is easy to accomplish.

My signs are always florescent poster board, sometimes with added reflective wrapping paper.  It makes a difference having a great sign.  People always tell me they love the signs…lol.  Some of my best slogans are: ” Don’t MISS this SALE”  or “Something 4 Everyone Sale,”  “Best Sale Ever,” ” Turn Around Cool Items. ” Often my signs are a shapes, maybe a circle or the shape of a dresser if we have furniture.  Stars cut outs on top of the signs in a contrasting bright color also helps grab attention.   And note: If you tell someone not to “miss” something they just can’t resist.

But this sale I am going in for the kill!

Eat your heart out Storage Wars.

I am planning to have a table of “Name Your Own Price” items…..who can resist that??? Another sign will say,  ”  HAVE 2 HAVE sale” sign.   “Useless stuff Sale. ”  “TOO BIG wont FIT” Sale…. for my new house.  And a “too little SPACE Sale” sign…..”Help me I’m a Hoarder, Sale.”

I think you get the idea, I am not planning to have many more of these sales, so I am going to have fun. I am thinking I might sell sodas as well.  If it’s warm and the sun is out, I can make .75 cents a can. Plus it keeps people happy, they stay longer and might just buy something.

In our town, garage sales are the ultimate signal that summer is near.  Garage Sale-ing a ritual, every Thursday is always the first day of any sale.  People map out the sales they are going to hit and make a day of it.  I like to be open on Thursday and Saturday.  I cant stand Friday because it  is too slow and Sunday people are too cheap. We’ll see how it works out this time.

My real issue here is most the stuff I have is what I decided to keep.  Ouch.  Now I am going to have to measure each room and be realistic.  It’s going to be a challenge, especially since, this is it.  My last chance.  I am not moving all this stuff one more time, not going to do it.  Minimalism here I come.  That has been my goal all along, but talking and doing are two different things.

The tough cuts await……I have to empty the storage unit and a garage….ugh.

This was the first day of having a storage unit, it looks so naive.

And you know what’s in those three containers?  Pottery made by students and professors from Cleveland State.  More average pottery than anyone ever needs.  At the time,the pottery was the most important thing for me to pack up and protect, err to hoard.  I still love it.  Every item was made by someone learning about design and clay.   Sigh.

Tip: Price everything, people are shy and don’t want to ask.

Inspiration: “You can never get enough of what you don’t need to make you happy.” – Eric Hoffer

One-day one -thing: Remember the every decision is an action, and action is how you create change.

Be kind to yourself.

Posted on Updated on

I was very kind to my self one day. I did a very simple exercise. I complimented myself. I told myself I was a good mother in the way I raised my children. I can’t tell you how incredible that felt.

Usually I would worry about all the things I would have done differently. Like not fight with their father, and not turn weekends into a cleaning marathons. I would beat my self up for making my children sad because I yelled. I constantly saw my errors instead of any of the wins.

One day it stopped, I stopped making chores a priority. I stopped expecting things I really deep inside didn’t care about. I learned that perfection was never going to exist in our home. I let that go along with all the other unrealistic goals.

I went a bit overboard, seriously, we had a messy house most every day of the year. But the kid’s friends would come over, and it was relaxed. I told them they never had to knock, come over any time, need dinner, then please join us. It was awesome. I sold my self short, I never knew how my children loved having the house where everyone was welcome and virtually nothing mattered.

I would drink wine, get silly and they would laugh at me. They would take over the living room to watch scarey gross movies. It was all that I always wanted; an open house.

We never even locked our doors until my one son bought his own computer, then he asked that we start locking the door. Probably a good idea, seeing my car was broken into twice, while in the drive.

Even with all this success, I still would focused on my mistakes. For so long I didn’t know how to make it up to them. I wasn’t perfect.

All three are in college now, living and learning and growing into fine human beings. They make me proud everyday.

I am a good Mom. Finally I believe that even with all the errors and the growing pains. I believe life teaches you what you need to learn, that is- if you are aware and open to the endless possibilities.

Tip: Never beat your self up – it does no good.

Inspiration: “The heart of a mother is a deep abyss at the bottom of which you will always find forgiveness.” ~Honoré de Balzac
(so, mothers forgive yourselves, we aren’t perfect)

One-day one-thing: If something doesn’t bring joy into your home – change it..

I am a coconut

Posted on Updated on

A coconut, that’s exactly what I am and what I want to be, because it works for me.

I have a hard shell, I can fall from 20 feet in the air and survive. I can be tossed aside and survive. I can be left alone in the dark and I survive.

Inside I am sweet, but not too sweet. I am firm but not too firm. I can be a nut. Plus I am good for myself and I am good to those who get past that hard shell. Yeah that’s it.

Last night after I cooked myself in a hot tub, I lathered myself in coconut oil for the first time in my life! My skin was so soft this morning, it felt like velvet. It was awesome!

Here’s what you do. I bought my coconut oil at Earth Fare, the Whole Foods wanna-be store at Westgate. It is packaged in a plastic tub if you pick it up in the toiletry area. It’s consistency is semi solid like refrigerated butter. To turn it into oil the directions say place the tub in hot water. So I put the coconut container in the bath with me. (make sure the lid is on tight)

When I finished my bath I opened the jar and the sides had turned into a perfect oil, and not hot at all. Use it sparingly – you will get the hang of it. Too much and you will be greasy and you don’t want that. I even used it on my face, it was like magic. No irritation, no chemicals, just delicious moisture.

Your world will smell like the tropics. Your thoughts might move to a more relaxed place as well. I highly recommend this to everyone!

Extra note: Great gift for Mothers Day, for the mom who already has everything.

Tip: Try something new as often as you can.

Inspiration: “Study nature, love nature, stay close to nature. It will never fail you.”- Frank Lloyd Wright

One-day one-thing: Read the ingredients on your skin care, then decide if you want those chemicals seeping into your skin.

Kill the Judge Within

Posted on Updated on

How many of you out there feel like this:

You read all the cool stuff about how to be happy , centered, nurtured, live in the moment, live in love and light, eat this and that, they are super foods after all and then you feel good. Yeah, it feels pretty good reading the words and thinking about the possibilities. “Feel good” words, but when it comes to living that life I have found it’s a ongoing struggle. Sometimes I want nothing more that to eat BBQ chips and watch TV. Yeah, crappy TV.

Don’t get me wrong, if TV was better I would pick the better shows….but that’s not the point. The point is there is only so much a person can take of learning how to be “wonderful in mind, body and spirit”

I hate to admit this, but I find it difficult sometimes to read more then the headlines…..or given a top ten list and I read the only the words printed in bold. I tell myself I will read in depth later. Ha!

I understand when a person is in that world, they are excited and want to share, and thank God they do. I would never spend the amount of time takes to figure out the grams of fiber and calories in any particular green smoothie let alone a book full of these recipes. There’s only so many hours in a day.

When I get my rest and eat well, and balance my day – there’s very little that can get me down. I know when I am really it, “it” being in the moment with a clear mind and heart, everything is so dang easy.

Come to think about it, I have changed my life. I should be proud of my growth instead of measuring myself against those far more centered or advanced than myself. That’s the key. I can read what I want and what I can handle, and if I feel like I am failing because I slack off, then at least I know I only have my self to blame…..which I should never do.

Don’t talk yourself down.

I should acknowledge that I do the best I can on any given day and that to me should be perfection. I am going to try to kill my inner judge. That judge has been living inside me way too long. I think this is a good thing.

Cheers!

Tip: Be as kind to yourself, remember you are still learning.

Inspiration: “Imperfection is not our personal problem, it is a natural part of existing.” – Tara Brach

One-day one-thing: Seek out the beauty in everyday life. Make mental acknowledgements of what beauty you see.

Lies

Posted on Updated on

Geez. I don’t lie. I try not to lie. I can’t remember anything , so I am no good at lying and I don’t feel good if I lie. So I really don’t lie.

I can keep a secret. I am the best secret keeper I know. I never betray a trust. But I want you to know, I don’t hold on to secrets. Meaning, I hold them and throw them away, maybe file them away is a better term. Secrets belong to those who share their life with me. Those secrets belong to the person who told the secret. If someone trusts me, I feel it is my most important responsibility to protect that trust.

I have always believed this. It’s nothing that I can change or that I want to change. It part of me like my face. It is just there.

So when I get lied to or when someone betrays my trust, I am deeply offended. I lose total respect for the person that lied to me. That’s it. I cut them out, or at least I cut them off. I mentally attempt to erase them. Not so easy when the person is a relative.

The inspiration quote I posted yesterday is very interesting to me.

“Lying is done with words and also with silence.”- Adrienne Rich

Take some time to think about this. It may prove helpful. If you are having an important conversation, and someone isn’t actively participating, it may be a clue to their deceit. Keep alert, pay attention to body language and tone. Changing the subject is another red flag.

I have learned that if someone lies once they will lie again. I have learned that liars think it is okay to lie. They easily understand when someone lies, and they go about their day as if nothing happened. Liars hang with other liars. “Birds of a feather” still holds true.

Obviously, I have a low tolerance for liars but I know so many of them. This often puts me in a position of being the oddball. The one who “expects too much out of other people.” I get criticized for expecting people to not lie in general. Who knew standing up for the truth would be met with criticism.

I believe everyone has the right and the responsibility to protect themselves. So don’t put up with any liars they will only hurt you over and over again.

Liars never rarely change. But the truth eventually comes to light. And for that we should be grateful.

Tip: If you call a liar out they will become angry, it’s better to recognize them for what they are and ignore them.

Inspiration: “No man has a good enough memory to be a successful liar.”- Abraham Lincoln

One-day one-thing: Acknowledge who has your back, nurture that relationship.

Negative force

Posted on Updated on

There’s something out there that wants to take me down.  I swear, I am doing all I can and bad sh*t keeps happening.

This morning, I was on my way to the dog park.  I started the engine and I hear a thump, and when I backed out there was a headless bloody creature dead on my driveway.  I don’t do well with gore, so a took the poop scooper, shielded my eyes and flung it into the bushes.

A little bloody organ remained stuck to the drive but I couldn’t stomach it.  So I left.

On my way home, the AC in the van didn’t work.  I thought that was peculiar, but things  got worse.  Every single service light on the dash was on.  Apparently every working part of my car was in distress.  Next the radio went silent, and then the car no longer let me know how fast I was going or how much gas I had.  All the gauges went dead. Just like the helpless creature on the drive.

I was able to get  home but a car was blocking the drive. I parked in the street, and that is where the car took it’s final breath.

This isn’t the only thing not going my way.  I have a person who wants to sue me over not buyer their house.  I never signed the counter offer, so to me there isn’t an executable contract.  This doesn’t stop sue- happy people.  This seller refuses to sign the mutual release and the real estate company is holding $1000.00 bucks of my cold cash.  Needless to say I am pissed.

I could use that money right now to fix my car problem. ( most likely an alternator $450 -$500)

But hey, things could be worse, and most likely they will get worse.

As long as I am held in limbo, I  can not buy a house. House number #3 or #4 is back on the market, we lost it before in multiples.  This is a second chance for us to buy it.  However I can’t, without being released from the non-contract contract, all because of her threat promise to sue me.  <heavy sigh>

One day: We are going to have our own place and I am going to tell all the fuckers in the world to back the fuck off.  People who are mean, nasty and lie.  They put all their twisted efforts towards getting something for nothing. They and the people that serve them, the pond scum lawyers, are repulsive human beings.

And that is how I really feel right now.

Cheers!

Tip: Don’t believe anyone.  Especially anyone who is in a position to make money off of you.

Tip2: Don’t believe elderly people when they say they don’t remember or when they say they can’t hear you- they are lying.

Inspiration: “Lying is done with words and also with silence.”- Adrienne Rich

One-day one-thing: Get rid of people you can not trust, no ifs, ands, or buts.  Just do it.