Friday, December 28, 2012

Robin, This One Is Especially For YOU!

Hi all!  I'm finally gonna' do some catch up here in blogland.  Soooo..... without further ado, it's time for that cutesy dog post I promised.  You've been warned.

On the day we got Tanner, he looked like this:
He was a little tan fur ball with a white blaze on his chest, white back toes and green eyes.

On his very first night at home, our dog Hailey was already willing to share her favorite spot with him.

He made himself quite comfortable.  I thought even his little backside was cute.

 Tanner got to meet our nephew Nathan the very next day as we were already on our way down to Palm Springs to close on our condo.  Obviously, Nathan thought Tanner was pretty cool.

We ended up waiting in a motel for days while the kinks were ironed out with our seller.  Tanner proved to be a pretty mellow fellow through it all.

Hailey and Tanner made themselves comfortable in the condo right away.  
They didn't mind the 80's furniture one bit.

When we checked out the dog area at the condo's west wall, we found out that Tanner wanted to help take Hailey for a walk and that he would hop like a bunny to keep his feet from getting wet in the the long grass.

Tanner's ears were flopped over for about the first week that we had him.  He looked like a little teddy bear.  Many people mentioned that he seemed a lot like a 'live' stuffed animal.
 Then one night he had one ear that was starting to go up.  The next morning he looked like this:
He was really starting to look like a Chihuahua!

There was a lot of work that needed to be done in the condo and all that being held in one hand while my husband or I would clean and scrub and move things around with the other hand was exhausting for Tanner.

But he found a really great place to rest!

 Hailey is sweet and will put up with almost anything from Tanner.....
 But when she's done, she's done.....  everybody has their limits!
(This is one of my absolute favorite pictures!)

 We have had so much fun with this little guy.  He is super easy to train and really made this Christmas time special for all of us.  It was a little tough because I took on extra work and then I was also surprised to note how challenging it was to have a big family holiday without our dog Parker this year.  Many people mentioned that they had so many wonderful memories of our Parker and also told me how much they really like our new little dude.  I would never want to put any pressure on a pet to heal a hurt, and yet Tanner has been just what we needed, just as he is.
......and it looks like the green eyes are here to stay!

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

I'm Only Doing Positive. For Now. ...So Enjoy This Christmas Tale

Can I just say that I have never in my life ever had such a strong desire to just hole up and take care of my own... 

So for now I'm working my butt off (quite literally) day in and day out and tonight I'm busy wrapping my nephews gifts in the color of money.  Cuz' I'm teaching him what I know to be true- that success really is the best revenge.

And I know the current POTUS thinks I'm one of those evil small business bastards that should be taxed the hell out of, so to that I say: anybody who wants to kill my initiative and ingenuity can kiss my...

Oh yeah.  Sorry.  I was being all positive and everything....

Here's a kick butt Christmas tree story instead.
All true. 
Happened today.

So I show up to one of my regular clients homes and there's a new request added to the list of party preparation.  Seems there's a tree in the garage that needs to be put in a stand and brought into the house.

OK, I'm game.   The tree looks like any other regular type fresh cut Christmas tree, all baled up and sitting in a big bucket of water. 

I walk over and try to lift the tree out to see how it'll fit into the tree stand.

I swear to you, that tree had to have sucked up enough water to choke a horse.  It was HEAVY.  I mean, 'holy crap I think I might have herniated something' heavy.  And it didn't look anywhere near big enough to be even slightly that heavy.

So I got some help to get the tree out of the bucket and into the stand.  Nobody else could understand how a tree of such 'regular' size could be that heavy either...

Then we all noticed how the size of the trunk was no way gonna' fit into any regular size stand.  The base of that thing had to have been 8 inches across and the stand would only hold something maybe 5 inches across.

So we did what anybody in the mode of getting that stupid tree to fit into the stand would do.  We got out an electric saw and started hacking away at the base until we were finally able to stuff it into the stand.

Great.  We had a tree in a stand.  Let's bring it into the house.

Except that when we got the tree into the house somebody noticed that all the bottom branches had been cut off and were just being held on by the baling that was tied all around the tree.  So, of course, when the baling was removed the tree was branch-less at the bottom for at least 2 feet.  I guess somebody might have mentioned that the idea was that the tree would be cut off at the bottom and the lowest branches were to be used as greenery for decorations. 

Oops.  Nobody had informed me.  That would also help to explain why when we hoisted the tree upright inside the house, the top was scraping the ceiling...

So now we needed to take the tree out of the stand, re-cut it and get it back into the stand.  Did I mention that somebody thought we better hurry up and put water into the stand so that heavy ass water logged tree wouldn't lose all its needles or anything?  Yeah, brilliant.  Because moving that tree that was already losing pounds of needles wasn't nearly enough fun on its own.  Having a huge puddle of water on the hard wood floor was so much better...

Back outside we went with the tree.  Using a neighbors borrowed saw, we cut that sucker back to a point where the tree trunk would fit nicely into the stand.  Great.  Only now the baling had been removed from the tree and it was nearly too fat to fit back inside the door. 

We did get that super heavy, now shorter tree back into the house.  It only took 3 people tugging and shoving and one person getting slightly injured to get it done.

The tree was lovely.  So green and nicely shaped. 

No one would ever guess how difficult it had been to tame that beast into the beauty that it now is.

But wait.  There's more!  That tree had more surprises in store for us.

It had a giant lady bug nest in it that we discovered while trying to get packages sent out to the UPS guy.  Yes, just picture it.  Ladybugs everywhere and one very confused UPS dude. 

And it was only after the tree had been sprayed for the ladybugs that the wasp flew out of it, very suddenly, dive bombing across the room so as to scare the livin' hell right out of all of us that were left still doing party prep.

At this point I looked at the homeowner and stated clearly that if a squirrel suddenly flew out of the tree, then that would be it.  I was out. 

He said he understood.

That's it.   That's my story.  All true, as I said.  Now I wish all of you and yours the very best this Christmas and I hope that your tree is drama free this year!!!

***all images in this blog post courtesy of***

Monday, December 10, 2012

New Years Plans, A Small Business Rant & Puppy Love...

...that's my life these days, in a nutshell.

Let me explain.

When I got back home from the Palm Springs trip that involved our getting the new (to us) condo all cleaned out and redone to our liking (and ability, in two weeks time) I was presented with a business opportunity.  I was more than happy to jump on said opportunity because my husband and I had already decided that we are returning to our Palm Springs condo for New Years, and taking our nephew with us!  It turned out that we didn't get the last of our deliveries until the Friday afternoon before we left on Saturday morning to come back home.  Naturally that means we need to go back just to be able to see how much we enjoy the fruits of our labor.  AND Nathan- our nephew- is thrilled beyond words that his school calendar this year allows for a sun break for New Years!

So.... it's on to explaining my small business rant. 

It goes like this:  I took on a huge project that will end on the 23rd, knowing that I wanted to pay for my return trip to Palm Springs.  This project is so large that I needed quite a bit of help in order to get it done on time for the customer.  I lined up help right away.  It seemed like a win-win as I knew several people who definitely needed money right now and some of those had helped me out on a temporary basis in the past.  My plans seemed solid.  I'm not a fly by night kind of gal.  I'm extraordinarily reliable and come with exemplary references, etc., etc.

So when a couple of these people turn out to be major lazy asses who are completely ungrateful for the work I've offered and don't care that they are making me look like a total ass hat, well- I'm less than impressed and might or might not have even wished that their inability to pay their rent on time or make the payment on their new roof might cause them to lose said roofs over their respective heads.  Yeah, I can be nasty like that...  I take business seriously and don't enjoy being taken for a ride.  What can I say?

Anyway, there is a happy ending to this situation:  I have been able to take on more of the work than I had anticipated having time for myself.  And I have been able to bring my new puppy, Tanner, with me to the job site with no problems at all.  The people I am working for love him and can't keep their hands off him.  This has resulted in me already being able to pay for the New Years trip and Tanner's social skills are blossoming.  And last night I did get a voice mail from one worker who just wanted me know how grateful she is for the chance to make some money and how every little bit helps, especially during Christmas.  That one phone call did an awful lot to undo the yucky feelings I have had about the people who have said how much they needed to work and then shown up to do so with rotten attitudes or even bailed on me at the last minute.

So, finally, it's on to the puppy love:  Robin, I will post one giant picture post of love just for you in the very near future.  The rest of you can skip it if it makes you want to puke.  I get it.  In the mean time, just know that every last moment I can spare is being spent loving on our dogs Hailey and Tanner.  Hailey is great with the new pup and I have actually found myself wishing he wouldn't grow up so fast.  I am really loving this process of puppy raising that I was so afraid of.  It has been such a true blessing.  My husband and I have not smiled and laughed so much in I don't know how long.  I really cannot express enough how good this little surprise has worked out for us, even amidst our condo chaos and all that is the holiday season.  It feels like this year we're getting to stop and enjoy everything through the new little guys eyes. 

Of course some of that is because if we don't watch him carefully he'll chew everything in sight and pee on the artificial Christmas tree...!

Friday, November 30, 2012

Different Christmas Magic

Yeah it's a little bit weird, I'll admit it.
We've been here in Palm Springs for the past two weeks and my husband and I have yet to really notice that it's Christmas time.
Palm Springs Christmas Trees

Between the beautiful warm 80 degree weather and the fact that we've both been working ourselves to the bone to get our little 80's time capsule vacation condo turned into something a bit more modern, Christmas has really snuck up on us.

I can see now what people mean when they say that it's a little bit strange to be in a place without distinct seasons.  You really have to step outside what you've ever thought of as traditional holidays and just embrace what's new and different to you.  

One thing we remember as completely magical is the tiny beautiful perfect snowflakes we saw in Joshua Tree National Park when we first came to Palm Springs 2 years ago.  It takes very dry conditions to get these; something we would never see in the damp northwest.

Can you see the tiny perfect stars?

We're taking the time to take in what's unique for the holiday season here before we head back home to Seattle in a couple days.  And while I'm happy that I had the forethought to prepare my home early for Christmas before we left for this trip so that I wouldn't feel all frazzled and behind when I got back, I have to admit that the fact that the first person to wish me a Merry Christmas this year was a guy that looked like Jimmy Buffet in a red tropical shirt is probably going to be one of the best memories of the season.

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

One Super Quick Update!

Yes folks, it's all true!
I am here in Palm Springs enjoying the vacation home that my husband and I finally closed on just yesterday.  It has been a whirlwind situation around here:  We recorded at 4pm yesterday and by noon today the whole condo had to be emptied out and readied to have our pink carpets dyed brown.  It was either hurry up and do it or live with pink carpet for a lot longer.  Yeah, we busted our butts and got it done!

The puppy update:  Tanner is awesome.  That's all there is to it.  Even with hanging out in a hotel for days waiting for our deal to close and with me being more than a little preoccupied with so many details, this little 8 and 1/2 week old pup has been such a joy and so good to have around!  He truly is probably the best behaved puppy I have ever dealt with.  Honestly!  Hailey has even been more lively than I've seen her in a very long time.  Tanner just makes us all laugh, even through some pretty heavy stress.

We are going to take the whole day on Thanksgiving to just enjoy and relax.  And I hope you will all do the same!

Then, it's back to the grind stone so we can make this place as lovely as the weather and the scenery it is surrounded by.  Well, at least what we can get done in another week and a half.... :) :) :)

Credit: David Castillo Dominici at

Friday, November 16, 2012


Ever since we lost our sweet dog Parker a couple of weeks ago, our other dog Hailey has been spending all of her time either moping around or begging for food.

She has certainly been more than a little sad,

just as we have been.

We miss our Parker.  We miss having some 'boy spirit' around here.  We've discussed the idea of looking for another little buddy.  At first we thought we ought to wait until next Spring.  We have so many things going and we definitely don't want to try to replace our Parker.

Recently, my husband and I had decided that we would seek out another dog sooner than later.  We've even floated the idea of seeing if we can't find someone special while we are away on our next trip to Palm Springs, which should be starting this coming weekend.

Yesterday, one of those "divine intervention" kind of things happened.

I was talking with a friend about how much we miss having a boy in the house and how sad our Hailey has been.  We discussed the idea that with family coming around for the holidays that would probably help a bit.

Then suddenly, my friend said she had a crazy idea and that she needed to make a phone call.

She ended up calling her in-laws in South Dakota who are due to come here to the Northwest today, for the Thanksgiving holiday.  These people are small time breeders of chihuahuas.  A couple of years ago I had seriously considered getting a dog from them as I have seen so many of their babies who have ended up in the homes of friends here, and how nice their temperaments are.  Plus my husband really, really wanted a chihuahua.  But alas, at that point the timing was off and we never got a dog from them.

Today, the timing is right. 

Absolutely everything lined up just right and our little Tanner will arrive at the Sea-Tac airport with my friends in-laws by 10am this morning. 

I feel as if I should be thinking about how nutty this all is, taking a new puppy on an immediate road trip down to California, where I have lots of work to do on our new condo. 

But I don't feel that way at all. 

I'm sure you dog lovers can understand.

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Could This Be Real???

After 4 extraordinarily chaotic hours that included lost documents, late documents, documents that had mistakes in them, driving all over town- twice, missed connections and one very badly timed dead cell phone, my husband and I are a whole lot closer to realizing one very big dream of ours

As with most dreams that are worth having, this has not been easily achieved.  Along with lots of hard work and sacrifice, the sheer frustration and aggravation of dealing with all the new regulations that have been foisted onto real estate deals has been enough to make a person want to scream- for a very long and loud time!!!

But enough of that...

It's so close I could practically reach out and touch it.  And very soon, we will.
Image credit: Skism by Plismo, found at wikimedia commons

Monday, November 5, 2012

A Little Good News...

...which we could all use these days.

It is hard to believe that it has been almost 2 years since my nephew Nathan was finally transferred into the full time custody of his father.  He has done nothing but flourish amazingly since then!!!

When Nathan moved in with his Dad he was 8 years old.  He didn't know how to use eating utensils properly.  He had zero social skills at all.  He rarely attended school.  I actually felt pretty sorry for the teacher that inherited Nathan as a student mid-year even though Nathan has always been a bright boy.  I knew it couldn't have been easy to take on a charismatic red head that was easily the most disruptive kid on the block!

My how things have changed!  Nathan's Dad has worked very hard to give Nathan a better life.  And last night Nathan's Dad called me to let me know that at his recent teacher/parent conference, the teacher told him that Nathan is one of his favorite students!  Now, I know that I am biased.  However, I couldn't be more pleased to find out that the absolute 'wonderfulness' that is Nathan is shining through! 

Sometimes I Embarrass Myself

How funny that the word embarrass has the word 'ass' in it.
Cuz' right now that's about how I feel.

Yeah, it hasn't been a stellar week- I lost my sweet little dog last Sunday, and then my Nephew's family had to put his cat down last night.  We still haven't heard back from my husbands college room mate (and best friend) in New Jersey yet.  And I've been wanting to pull my hair out or reach through the phone and pull my mortgage brokers hair out over his 'tiny' mistake that cost us a week of waiting for a closing date...

I have been edgy and irritable.  And yet there really isn't any excuse for the way I've been letting myself get all worked up over stuff that isn't going to change just because I got all worked up over it.

All of this stuff is just annoying and I embarrass myself when I don't realize how much worse things can be.  

So... I'm letting everyone know that I am so sorry for being so darn selfish this week.

I think of Nathan's grandma that only wanted to go on a cruise to the Bahamas for her 10th anniversary, with her husband who travels for work so often that they rarely get to celebrate anything at all together.  The trip was to be last week and they left from a port in New York city.  Needless to say they never made it to the Bahamas and were lucky to be able to get back home on Thursday after riding out hurricane Sandy and 3 days of waiting in the airport for flights that were cancelled over and over again.

I think of my friends who just lost their church home.   Their church was suddenly disbanded due to financial issues and a pastor that resigned.  This church was really important in their lives and has been the glue that helped to stabilize them through the loss of parents at a young age, infertility issues, and a long bout of joblessness.  I just know they feel so adrift without the strength of their church.

I also think of all those people who made it through hurricane Sandy and yet have not one material thing left in this world.  No home, no tangible reminders of memories, maybe not even all of their family members.

Sometimes I can't believe what an ass I can make of myself.

While I can't promise that I won't let things get to me again, I can choose how I react to the daily annoyances of life.  It's not always easy, but I owe it to everyone to put a little more effort into the positive side and a little less jumping to donkey-like reactions.

Curious Donkey by Evgeni Dinev / Image found at

I'll start by concentrating on one of the main reasons I have been so excited about having a vacation condo:  I have an idea about being able to use our Palm Springs condo and maybe even network with others who also have vacation properties to be able to help those who never get the luxury of having any vacation at all.

Photo Credit:  Hand Fire by Salvatore Vuono
Image found at

Ah yes, so much more productive than getting all worked up and annoyed.....

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Not A Procrastinator, Unless.....

It's true.  Don't hate me because I am not a procrastinator.  I've just always been one of those 'jump in there and do it' kind of people.  Even if I kind of don't like what needs to be done.  I'd much rather get it over with, whatever it is, and then move on to thinking about and focusing my energy on other things. 

BUT.... there is one time that I will seriously get caught in the procrastination wheel and end up going:

                                              and round...             and round...

                                                               and round...

That time is when I have done the one thing that I can't stand about my personality and I am still working very hard to change.  That is when I have agreed to do something that I absolutely do not want to do, would rather scrub the bottom of my shoes than do and will never agree to do again.  But somehow I do agree to it- just this one time, because you are such a good friend, or I really need the money this month.  Or whatever can get me to accept the idea that I will do this thing that I detest and know darn good and well that I will have to do way too many times to make sure it turns out well and spend so much time on it that I will resent the project and possibly the person who asked me to do it before it is all said and done.  Whew!

What it really boils down to is that I procrastinate when I know that the thing I am about to attempt doing will require me to tell someone that "No, I am not willing to make you another one."  Or "No, it was not worth my time at all."  Or even, "No, this project was not fun and I won't be willing to do it again."

I just don't like to say no.  And it's annoying.  Cuz' I could save myself a whole lot of trouble if I'd just get more comfortable with that word: NO.

Now pardon me while I practice remembering how to say NO, as I head off to do some stuff that I can't stand and then get up the gumption to say NO next time.

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

A Little Humor For The Political Season

Imagine my surprise when I sighted the sign above as I arrived at a workplace the other day.

I have to admit that sometimes I do wonder about the qualifications of those who run for office, but no- we do not actually have genitals running for office around here.  (The guys name is actually Ron Bemis.)

I really hope that those responsible for the 'changes' on this sign can use their creativity to help solve the issues that we face!

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Sometimes Our Subconscious Is Ahead Of The Game

Because I still live in the same area that I've always lived for my whole 38 years on the planet, my life is pretty steeped in tradition.  From the ways that I always prepare for holidays to the places I like to take a weekend drive, there is a pretty set internal 'map' living inside me. 

Sure, there isn't really anything outside myself and my belief system that absolutely dictates what I do, but I inevitably end up doing things in a very similar way year in and year out.  It seems to be kind of the way many of us humans work- we like patterns and things that make us feel secure in some way. 

Especially for those of us who have managed to break away from unhealthy family rituals it can be quite a shock to see how quickly and easily we mange to box ourselves into yet another regimen, that may or may not be meaningful to us in any real way.  For some of us, safety has always been in knowing as much as possible about what's coming next and we have been willing to trade exciting and fulfilling lives for whatever level of safety we could get.

So it struck me hard, the other day, that this past year has already been the beginning of many new experiences and new opportunities to get outside of my comfort zone.  Without realizing it, I have been subconsciously moving toward less security and more spontaneity.  I have been willing to try new things, even breaking out of traditions that I love. 

Photo Credit: Simon Howden/

Part of that has been because of new opportunities that I couldn't imagine would ever be mine.  Part of it is simply a willingness to bend in ways I used to be afraid of... and learning that I can bend a long way without breaking!

For many years I have declared that what I really want is a more spontaneous life.  And at the same time I've long joked about how I was going to have my gravestone inscribed with the words:  Trust No One.  Turns out these two ideals don't work together at all. 

You have to trust yourself before you can trust anyone else. 

And I have to trust in my ability to handle whatever this spontaneous life might bring my way before I can ever truly embrace it. 

It's still a work in progress, but it's way more fun than living inside any box could ever be!

Friday, October 5, 2012

Lost In 'Real Estate Paperwork Land'

Holy cow! 

I was warned by a neighbor about how bad the combination of crazy California over-regulation and all the new rules for bank loans would be and I still have been caught completely by surprise.

Yesterday alone, we signed 53 pages of paperwork.  And emailed back 23 pages of supporting material to prove that we can afford this new loan for a condo in Palm Springs.

All this with 45% down and a credit score in the high excellent range.  Did I mention this is just preliminary stuff and we are still a month out from signing final papers?  Definitely not for the faint of heart...

In the meantime, I want to mention that my sweet dog Parker is 15 and 1/2 as of yesterday!!!

Not bad for a breed that has an average lifespan of 10-12 years.  Honestly, he has outlived any reasonable expectations and his days now consist of roasting his old bones on the deck (-thank God we've had such a nice Fall so far) and doing lots of funny dementia and lack of hearing and sight related things that still keep us laughing and enjoying his wonderful spirit.

Have a wonderful weekend, y'all!

Monday, October 1, 2012

Some People...

Ever have one of those weeks?!

Yeah, I know.  We all do sometimes.

Dang, sometimes I just don't get people.

Let me tell you about this past week for me....

Fresh off my excitement of finally realizing one great big dream of mine, I was feeling so grateful.  And naturally, I should.  I get that.

I had gotten the call that we had an accepted offer on the Palm Springs, CA condo that my husband and I have wanted so much.  I got that call while I was with a friend that I was helping to liquidate his entire estate.  Talk about a contrast of feelings- to get such happy news while dealing with such a sad situation!  My friend had been going through a home foreclosure, after losing his wife last year.

As luck would have it, my family ran an estate liquidation service when I was growing up, so I knew I could help.  I came as soon as his other friends, who had promised to help, bagged out on the project- and got right to work.  I brought along some of our dance club friends and we all busted our butts for one very long week.

The sale went really well and we made awesome progress on emptying out the entire house.  My friend was to receive $3,000 if he got out and left the house empty by the deadline this past weekend.  An inspector would be arriving at the deadline to sign off on paperwork that would assure him of getting the money.

Things were cruising along and my friends and I were all working together so well.  Everybody really pitched in and did whatever they could.  We were all so exhausted, but kept on moving toward that deadline.  We knew we could do it.  We were not stopping until the work was done. 

At different times during the week this man's siblings would drop by.  They never stayed for long and only occasionally took items away that needed to be stored in a place that his sister had set up for him.  I was a bit frustrated by this behavior, but simply charged on.  There was no time to argue or worry about this.

Then, on the last day before the deadline, as we were all sweeping and vacuuming and clearing out the last of the items a moment came that just made me so angry I could have spit.  (And I think spitting is super yucky!)

My friends sister comes back to the house.  She is supposed to be taking the big pile of boxes from the garage to the storage area.  This is really the last big thing that needs to be done so my friend can be out of the house on time.  Instead of doing what she said she would do and what desperately needed to be done, because of the looming deadline, this man's sister decided that she didn't have time to take the boxes before she needed to be back at work.

To add insult to injury, my friends sister did decide that she would be taking the vacuum that was promised to her that we were still using.

I was not only dumbfounded by this behavior.  I was just pissed off.

After picking my jaw up off the floor and realizing that this man's sister was clearly trying to sabotage his progress, my friends and I quickly changed gears.  We loaded up those boxes ourselves into our own vehicles, rented a storage unit and got the project done.

I can't tell you how happy I was to be able to see the project through just before the inspector arrived! 

Now, I just hope that vacuum cleaner blows up and spreads dust and a stink that won't go away all over my friends sisters house!!!

Monday, September 24, 2012

Dreams Don't Believe In Statistics

***Note:  to my faithful readers who would rather stay out of the politics- this will NOT be another political post!!!***

We've all seen the staggering statistics about what happens to kids whose parents are drug addicted. 
Then there are the issues presented for kids who have parents that suffer from mental illness.  Previously, I have touched upon the fact that my husband and I are both people who grew up in these types of households.  And we both want nothing more in this life than to break that mold and have truly happy lives that affect others in a positive way.

My husband and I especially want to be an alternative view for our nephew and other kids who have had a rough start in any way that we can.

One phone call I received on Friday afternoon has hit me like a giant firework covering the entire night sky on the 4th of July!

My husband and I have been dreaming of many things over the past few years.  We have had big ideas about what kind of life we want.  We have worked diligently to move in a direction that will fulfill some hearts desires for us and also some things we believe will allow us to be the people we are meant to be.

Along the way, we have learned that sometimes things don't happen the way we imagine that they will.

Just as I have come to accept that some things will have to wait, I have also realized that the bigger we dream and the harder we work- the more there is that is possible than either of us could ever have imagined!

As kids who were repeatedly reminded that their world was small and they should never expect to amount to anything, my husband and I are especially thankful for anything that comes our way and we always look forward to how we will be able to share and hopefully motivate others to strive for more.

As for this moment, I wish I could just shout from the rooftops how much I feel validated in always knowing in my heart of hearts that nobody can ever stop you from dreaming and that eventually even really big dreams can be realized.  Never doubt that anyone can become their own tiny statistic.  And then influence others to make that statistic grow.

Along with the picture at the top of this blog, my little cactus garden on my dining room table has served as motivation to scrimp and save and plan and dream.  It will now be a reminder of my own little place in the sun.

We are buying a vacation condo in Palm Springs, CA!!!

That's right.  This 'Yellow Rose Of Texas' may not be in Texas yet, but I'm going to have a whole lot more sun in my life starting about 45 days from now when my husband and I close on our property purchase.

As I cruise off to continue on with my weekend long happy dance, I'll leave you with this:

Couldn't Have Said It Better Myself

Please do me a huge favor and read this blog post.

Then let me know what you think.


Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Growing Pains

How come being authentic has to be so darn painful sometimes???

Anyway.  I stuck to my word.  Here's the proof.

Maybe by being open and honest about my politics, I'm asking for anything that comes my way. 

And I thought I was just being brave and hoping that maybe others would see that they are not alone here in the land of  'only leftist politics allowed'.  Silly me.

So far... one of my neighbors has accosted me with a screechy speech about the Koch brothers.  Another neighbor has informed me that she feels guns should be reserved only for those who live 'out in the country'.  And last night when I picked up a friend to take her to a basketball game, she actually asked me if I had put my dogs on the roof of my car during my last trip to California.

I kid you not.  These are completely real comments.  Including the one from someone who is supposed to be my friend.  Oh and then there's the guy who flipped me off on the freeway while gesturing fervently toward my bumper...

To neighbor #1 I answered by telling him that if he wanted to have any kind of real open conversation, he would have to pick a better opening line. 

To neighbor #2 I told her that we would have to just agree to disagree.  I really didn't know what else to say.  Believe it or not, I've never actually thought to question the second amendment.

As to my friend's rude dog comment, I simply told her that I take plenty of abuse from all the wonderfully tolerant souls here in our fair city of Seattle and I felt that was enough.  I didn't need to take any extra abuse from my friends. 

She got real quiet.  Real fast.

I'm not gonna' lie.  This is not easy.  It's just as bad as I thought it might be.

But I'd rather be honest than popular.  And I'm still smiling.  And glad I decided to do this. 

Even through the tears...

Monday, September 17, 2012

The Star Spangled Banner Still Rocks!

I love traditional with a twist.  A good friend sent me this today because she knows that about me.

With everything that is going on in the world right now, I can't imagine a better time to celebrate America and the freedom we love.


Friday, September 14, 2012

Stuff That Doesn't Really Matter

The world is a crazy place.  It feels even more crazy than usual these days.

During times like this, my natural instinct tends toward making sure I fight back, in a constructive way.

One of the things I find helpful for daily survival is watching others and taking in how they behave and how things turn out for them.  This has saved me from countless hours of wheel spinning and sorrow. 

And sometimes I just get a kick out of the whole darn thing.  People watching is great sport, really!

Have you ever seen how seriously whacked people can get over the smallest things???

One particular thing that I have noticed people get a riled up about, that is just plain silly, is this:
                        Toilet Paper 

Should it be this way?                                                   Or this way?

Seriously.  Does it really matter?

Honestly, I have actually listened to people argue about this.  More than once. 

I have had people come over for a party and use my bathroom and actually tell me that they 'fixed' my toilet paper roll because it was 'on wrong'. 

Which is super funny, because in this household we are ambidextrous when it comes to the direction of our TP.  Honestly, we just don't give any effort whatsoever to whichever way it ends up on the holder.  But hey, if you're somebody who wants to waste their time 'fixing' it then, yeah I will laugh in your face.  For sure.

With everything that does matter, it's a wonder that anybody ever finds time to argue about such silly stuff.  But as humans, we do.  Don't we?!  

What have you found that people argue about that is just plain ludicrous?  Be careful.  It's a jungle out there!

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Please Tell Me This Is Not A Cockroach

My apologies to those who are creeped out by bugs.  I'm with ya.

We found this scary bugger in the pool.

Check out the size of this thing!!!

Nathan's Dad scooped it out with a net and sent it on its way.  But maybe we shouldn't have unleashed this beast back into the world...

Now, I've just gotta ask:  what is this???  Do I even want to know???

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