Monday, October 20, 2014

Bucket List

Thank you Sherry over at "Mama Diaries" for this fun blog hop idea.  I can't wait to see what's on different bloggers bucket lists!  If you followed over from Sherry's blog or another 'Bucket List' blogger today, welcome!  And to the regular readers, I hope you might be inspired to think about your own bucket list.

As someone who has had many life experiences all along the spectrum of positive to negative, I believe I am especially fortunate in the realm of never truly feeling as if I have 'missed out' on much.

 However, I am a big believer in having goals and a focus on the future.  So my 'Bucket List' is definitely a kind of blueprint expanding on the life that I currently live and am hoping to add to in the future.
 So here we go...
1)  To live in Texas.  If you've read me at all you know I've wanted this for a long time.  Even if I have to wait until I am retired to do it, I WILL live in Texas.
 2)  To have a ridiculous number of dogs in my household.  I used to think a pair or maybe 3 dogs was a good numberlike most sane people do.  Having met people who have the right resources and time who just relish in loving on a whole bunch of dogs, I believe I could be one of those people.
 3)  To go at least one year where I don't decorate for Christmas- hint, it might be this year!
 4)  To make a real difference in the lives of children.  I have no kids of my own.  I have worked with kids for about 20 years of my life and I take a large role in the life of my nephew.  I want to be sure that this item on the list does not end when I do.  I'm working on a way to keep this going long after I'm gone.  If it were not for some very instrumental people in my life, I never would have made it.
 5)  To get a private pilot's license.  As a self-proclaimed 'freedom freak' I crave any and all forms of freedom and flying seems like a wonderful one.  Plus I come from a long line of recreational fliers.
 6)  To learn to be as selfless as my husband.  He inspires me with his ability to be both selfless and happy.
 7)  To have a home that is both uncluttered and yet feels warm.  I think I am getting close!
 8)  To get to a point where I feel that I am fulfilling what I was meant to do.

Sorry I got to the party late today.  I actually had a surprise work opportunity!  Hopefully, I still get some readers over here today!

Sunday, October 19, 2014

Where I've Been

You may have run into a comment or two of mine, so you know I haven't dissapeared completely.  Mostly, lately I have been working my butt off to try and find some decent paid work.  I knew it might be tough here in California as the job market is still not great, but this has been a doozy of an experience.  And while I'm glad that my husband feels its fine for me to just 'hang out and enjoy the great weather for a while', it turns out that I'm not as comfortable with this idea as I had initially believed I could be.  Ah, the beauty of being a motivated person who doesn't give up easily.... But in essence, after 38 tries I have actually admitted to myself that even I can't fix this lack of decent paying work in SoCal.

Here's the skinny if you're interested in my personal job hunting experience in California.  The line of work I have specialized in for the last 20 years involves dealing with personalized services for people who have successful and busy businesses of their own.  I am very good at anticipating needs and have NEVER had trouble being referred to others by present clients.  However, this time around, I have come to find that people here are so strapped by their sky high cost of living- due mostly to mortgage payments that would keep anyone up at night- that they simply can't afford ANY 'extras', even if said extras would lead to a better run life and business.  It is interesting and frustrating- and will lead to us too being unable to afford living in CA sooner than we had originally planned.  And so the cycle continues...

 But hey, let's look at the bright side.  I have a forced break that will make me stop and smell the roses over on the beautiful little Balboa Island which I am so growing to love, I will be more motivated to work harder on my next life project, and of course the California government is busy keeping me safe from those evil plastic grocery bags.  Really, who needs a decent paying job?  Actually, I do.  And the fact that I have been offered wages that I haven't worked for since college makes me proud of the fact that I've learned how to say NO and sorry that California and I will have to soon part.  Oh well, at least I'll be safe from those scary plastic bags.
"silouette shopping man" by Sattva, found at

Monday, September 22, 2014

Just Flush It, Please!

This one falls into the category of some things are good in theory only...

'white sanitary ware and tissues' by nuttaki, found at free digital

To the inventor of the water saving toilet (apparently your name is Bruce Thompson and you hail from Austrailia): 
 While I can certainly appreciate a desire to save water in a place such as California is with its water woes, I cannot understand taking a device that actually works and turning it into a disgusting, dirty and non-functioning device.
I am not being overly dramatic here. I cannot tell you the number of times that I have come into the bathroom to find a 'half-flushed' toilet that is stinking to the high heavens and looks like something that my dog chucked up after eating something that only a dog would find tasty.
 Seriously, a toilet that doesn't have much more than a few cups of water in it and then you offer up the option of a half flush?!  And it never occurred to anyone that this could be just plain gross?!  Not to mention how much extra water actually gets used when the ineviatable additional flushes happen to make that sad dry toilet try to take on the job it was supposed to do in the first place.  That is before it was robbed of neccessary water to do said job.
 Please, I beg of you sir, try again.  There has to be a better way.

***Thank goodness we left these nasty toilets behind in the apartment in favor of 'normal' ones in the new rental.  Have YOU encountered these water saving toilets?  What did you think?

Thursday, September 18, 2014

Treading Water

So in answer to my own question from my last post, my husband and I ended up near the lake that the dogs like walking around- about 4 houses away actually.  With a peek-a-boo view from the guest room.  Renting a home at the beach was just too expensive, it turned out.  Although it would have been fun to experience the true California coastal scene, it is not in the cards for us right now.  Moving out of the townhouse apartment and dealing with the large deposit on another place has been enough of a drag on our time and energy and bank accounts too!

We are hopeful though that we can get into the swing of things and do more enjoying the sun and fun and less of the sweating while moving everything we own for the second time in less than 2 months!  I can certainly say that touching everything you own three times since we packed up and left Seattle in June makes you want to get rid of a whole lot more and certainly puts things like blooging onto the back burner.  I hope to get back to it as I experience new things that inspire me every day.  And now I hope to have the time for it as well.  It's been good to peek in on my favorite bloggers here and there and see that things are moving on as they do.  I really want to join back in soon!

Friday, August 29, 2014

To Beach Or Not To Beach

Sometimes we fool ourselves into thinking we have it all together.  And then a series of events piles up like traffic on the San Diego freeway and we end up feeling like a great big moron!
No sooner had I patted myself on the back for my great organizational skills on display as I whipped everything into shape faster than lightening when it came to our big move-  I mean who else could sell off half of their stuff, sell their house and get moved over 1200 miles into new place pretty darn seamlessly???  And in 23 days???  Ah, but I forgot one giant detail that has proceeded to glare me in the face and laugh maniacally at my naïveté.

 Folks, we are not apartment people.  Not even for a short term kind of deal.  How in the heck did I manage to forget that I once spent 4 years in a 580 sq. Foot dump of a rental house simply to avoid apartment living???  Not to mention that I have always called them compartments and wondered where the 'apart' part came in!

Sure, I own a vacation condo, but let me assure you- that is completely different.  You don't like your noisy neighbor?  No worries- they or you will be gone soon.  And really, there's never more than half occupancy anyway so that issue is rare.  Plus there's that little issue of ownership- makes a huge difference.  And let's not forget smokers have to live somewhere so naturally they end up next door to me in every apartment I've ever been in.  Llet's just say that my pride in my abilities to organize my own self and issues has taken a giant hit!

So now that we have made the choice to move yet again as I do not wish to join the ranks of my crazy relatives and possibly cause bodily harm to others, I'm feeling a little less than expert at decision making these days.  My husband wants to take the opportunity to move closer to the beach, but that's expensive.  I think I agree with him that we should go ahead and dive into the California culture while we are here.  And yet, I fear being in a smaller place, even though I know I was capable of doing'tiny'in the past.  I just do not want to feel like I have not managed to find the right place to call home- yet again. 

What do you think?  Have I become a 'suburban' girl who can't live without her space?  Or will I regret not having done the beach thing even more?  I'm especially interested in hearing from the beach dwellers out there!!!

Thursday, August 14, 2014

What If Wednesday- A Little Digging

Alright y'all, it's time to get my act together around here- come broken computers or flooded vacation condos!
This installment of 'What If Wednesday' is brought to you by my husband who likes to find himself in interesting situations that he's managed to dig himself into.  And believe me he has managed to get himself into some doozies- like that time he dug a ditch with a guy that turned out to be a serial killer. Seriously, a true story.  But a story for another day!

This week's 'What If' is this:  What if you researched your family tree?  Even just a little bit?
The box and the tree, by njaj/ found at:

Since I have no information about my father's side, I have always assumed that there was not much that I could learn from working through my family tree.  My husband has had a lot of fun proving me wrong!  After finding that his family tree is pretty much exactly as his mother and grandmother had told him, he decided that it would be enjoyable to unearth some mystery and excitement by seeing what he could dig up for me.

A long story short, my husband found out some pretty interesting stuff.  He found not 1, but 2 cases of women who bore children who were then labeled as siblings rather than their own children and one of these was my great grandmother!  He found a boy orphaned by a mother who died in childbirth and a father who died in the civil war.  He also found more than one record of people who spent time in mental hospitals- thereby proving that when I mention that I come from a long line of crazy and that people ought not push it, these are not empty threats!

This whole excercise turned out to be a lot of fun and I'm glad my husband dug down this path.  What about you? What might you know or learn from exploring your family tree?!

Thursday, August 7, 2014

Three Weeks

Over the last week or so, there has been more enough excitement around here and not in a good way.  First our Palm Springs condo was flooded in the utility closet by our upstairs neighbor whose management company failed to shut off the water when leaving the condo vacant for an extended period of time.  Dealing with them accusing us of possibly being the source of the leak (since when does water go up?!) and then getting them to finally come and do something about the damage has been none too peachy.  I can start to see why people jump to sue. Now our trusty old computer of 7 plus years has finally decided to give up the ghost.  I am currently blogging on a cheap tablet-not so fun.   However, my nephew will be here tonight and we have lots of swimming, boating and fishing to do.  Not to mention his trip to Vegas that he earned by doing exceptionally hard work during his schooling this year.  So we are going to concentrate on having a blast over the next 3 weeks and deal with life's little annoyances as little as possible!
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