30 September 2010

Early Fall

It's the first of October and I'm basically miserable.  I'm become a sad old woman.  I go home every night to my cat, watch a little tube or work the yarns (spinning, knitting, dyeing, etc).  I've given up school at least for the monent because I just don't have the strenget to do school AND work.

Work has become a misery.  Called division chief, I am constantly sabotaged and undermined.  I have "staff" who do whatever they want to do.  I couldn't get a weekly progress report even by begging.  Anyone and everyone else with an involvement feels free to task my employees with whatever, but I get schooled for asking a team member to complete a minor task.  My former boss, who was displaced by upper management and given a new assignment has taken to "directing and tasking" me as though I was unable to determine actions form meetings and emails..  I'm perfectly capable of deriving actions from emails and meetings.  I don't need him to tell me what to do.  He was supposed to be out of the office weeks ago and he's still there.  The rest of the team have decided that they either work for him or they work for a higher level up.  A weekly report on the progress of the team was pointedly ignored

I am treated less than respectfully,  team members show up, uninvited to project team meetings( note that they are NOT members of the team).  They constantly interrupt me when I'm speaking, one of them actually shushed me by raising his hand to MY MOUTH as I was trying to answer a question put directly to me.  Employees have flatly refused to take on a minor tasks I asked for.  Somehow I have to bring this crowd of men into line and get what I'm entitled to as a manager and do it professionally.  I think I'd rather walk away, but I can't.  Previous boss presumes to speak on my behalf whether he's been asked to or not.

I do NOT know how to bring these people into line and it's making me crazy!  I know I can do this, I just need some damn help to make it real.  I"m beginning to think I need to bring Lady Dorothy into the mix and maybe have a small dance in the back yard..

I am exhausted, physically and emotionally.  I need to take time off work, but can not because I fear that I will have no job to return to,  "They're" standing in line to push me out.  I would simply have no job left to return to .  It's bad enough that I'm going to a training class soon.  I'll be gone for, probably a few days and it would be the perfect time to have a friendly little neighborhood coup.  Since we all know how that ends up...They are heros and I am jobless scum.

I've become so low that I've begun thinking curtailment, even though I love where I am, and I know that curtailment would ruin ANY possibility I might ever have to get promoted and with a curtailment on my record, no other field site on this (or any other) planet will ever have me.

Add to all this is that I'm tired and dreadfully lonely.  There's so many times that I really need a hug, or I just need to be held...and I got nothin.  Every night, it's the same lonely bed, cold on that one side.  Every night...no one but the cat and TV to talk to.  Rarely, I wish it just all be over.  I need someone to cuddle. It's been years since I've been touched and I wonder if I'll ever get a little snog ever again.  Truly given up hope for a shag, but a snog would be really help.

Enough wankery...it' time to be off to bed.

Perhaps tomorrow will be better.

15 September 2010

Can ya believe it's been a year??

2 Sept 2010

Definitely time to take a mo and revisit the blog.  I celebrated the first day of my new life in Hawaii exactly one year ago...yesterday.  I've really changed a lot since I got here.  Having gotten away from the stifling life in Korea, where every attempt on my part to give value and make a difference were rebuffed and sabotaged, I started over in Honolulu. I went from being part of a family an ensemble if you will, albeit a small one, to being a solo act.  I miss my late husband dearly.  Occasionally, it still overwhelms me, especially then there are things that I would share with him.  There's loneliness here, and lots of it even though I have some dear friends that I prize more than quiviut, cashmere, or silk (knitters will know what I mean)  There are nice places to go to eat , some concerts to go to (although the Honolulu Symphony is apparently no more).  More importantly, I have dear friends to share my new life.  Go ahead and mock me, but sometines it's kind of like when Doctor Who regenerates and he ends up a different man.  I came here and am regenerating into a new person.

Some days later...

I belong to a knitting group that is fun, loving, and pretty outrageous and I love them.  They bring out some really good stuff in me and I like it.  My job?  Well, that's different a bit.  I started off as the deputy to a smart man with a very strong personality who maybe wasn't the best at sharing with other people.  Things developed and changed and he was assigned to oversee a specific task.  I was elevated to a Division Chief's position and all of a sudden became responsible for managing two of the most complicated projects you could imagine.  I've managed construction of industrial factories in swamps and the historic restoration of 200+ year old buildings and I've had nothing yet that had as many moving parts and political players as these.  I swear if I ever get time off, I'm going to go hide in the hills of York or Ireland and make them find me.  A Scottish mountain top is also appealing.  BTW, it looks like I'll be doing this job till at lease 2015.

Today was a particularly miserable day in a string of miserable days.  I've been working overtime because I'm been required to attend day long offsite meetings and still have to go into the office either before or after to make care of the daily things.  This man I used to work for and now am a peer has a knack of attacking my self esteem and skills when I'm tired or not feeling well.  He got me again today, criticizing my competence and level of understanding.  The first comment was a remark that if I had trouble understanding his email, I should ask him...all delivered in a very patronizing way.   He's always ready to step in and heroically "save the day" if he perceives a vacuum and it would make his year if he could swoop in make everything all wonderful and save the projects from little old incompetent me.  Wouldn't he be wonderful?  I always feel as though I'm watching over my shoulder because he's just waiting for the chance to make me look bad and I can no longer trust him.

I've also got a really bad case of the lonesomes.  Found out a nephew was getting married this weekend.  Found it out on facebook.  Nevermind something ordinary like maybe an invitation.  Who knows...if they had bothered to send me an invitation, they might have gotten a gift.  Now they get nothing.  It's so wonderful to belong to a family that doesn't acknowledge you're alive.  The late husband's family is no better...They don't respond to contact or volunteer any.  The only thing I can think of is they blame me for his death. 

So I occasionally have these spells where I get weepy and sad and lonely.  They always pass...eventually.  During these tender times, I always long for intimacy and physical contact.  I am rarely touched anymore and I miss that.  Michael and I were quite physical, not obnoxious or rude about it, but we were hand holders and would walk with our arms around each other.  At tables our legs or knees were always touching.  I miss that.

Well, this pity party has gone on long enough.  It's bedtime.  NiNight my dears.

15 May 2010

I really should get here more often...

So, it's almost June. Wow!  I can't believe how quickly time goes by.  I haven't noted it before, but I'm starting up the Master's degree again.  It will be interesting to see how I do without my biggest fan.  Michael was always so supportive of my school work.  He did stuff so I could devote more time to the books and he never complained when I studied instead of paying attention to him.  He was so proud when I finished the BS.  He would be happy that I decided to finish the MS after not being able to take classes for so long.

I always thought that books were criminally overpriced, even when I started college so many years ago.  They are STILL criminally over priced.  How they can justify charging $177 for a book on Project Management is totally beyond me.  I guess I'm just in the wrong business.  I should become a college bookseller and gouge students on required texts.

On a personal note, I had a GREAT appointment at the physio today.  The back exercises are meh and not much of a challenge, but one of the massage therapists worked me over.  Oh my God!  It felt like my back was full of rocks and she hit every one of them.  I could feel the knots getting smaller, but I'm so tender that it was hurty.  It's going to take a while to get over almost four years of lack of treatment.  The Korean medical establishment is not big on pain management nor do they appreciate patient questions.  Also, their idea of massage is very rough.  Almost every time I ended up bruised and swollen.  I am VERY happy to have found a good physio with good, professional, massage therapists.  I'm looking forward to reducing my pain!

On another note, I'm thinking of getting myself an orchid or two.  Michael and I had a whole raft of plants before we went to Korea.We cared for plants in Korea, but they belonged to the landlord and of course, I couldn't bring them with me. Now, I only have a little aloe thing that the last tenant left (which I need to repot as it's in an old, weathered, brittle plastic thing).  I love flowers, but there are no flowering plants in the landscaping, and I don't think the current landlord would appreciate me digging up the back yard and planting "stuff".  I figure that if I choose the right orchids, I'll do fine since I don't have to worry about cold and we get plenty of breezes.  I'm also quite tempted to add an African Violet or two, too.  Michael and I had quite the collection of violets and he was a genius at propagating them.  Actually, Michael had a real knack with all sorts of plants and he took great pleasure in growing pretty and often tasty plants.  If I weren't such a lazy bint, I would get some herbs started in the back.  Perhaps when the back is better.

06 April 2010

It's been a year. I can't really believe it. (Originally posted 15 Jan 2010)

It has been just over a year since Michael died. Some days it seems like I'm right in the middle of it all over again. Other days, it feels like the whole drama has been over forever and life was always the way it is right now, complete with that empty "Michael shaped" hole. He's always with me and there are times I want to hold him again and it hurts so bad. There are things I do that I wish I could share with him, but I do them anyway, because I know he would enjoy knowing that I was enjoying something. I have far more "good" days than bad days, but there are days where the lonliness kind of pervades the house. Feels kind of like a constant light, cool rain, sometimes there are rainbows at the end. The sadness never lasts for long. The cat comes by to annoy me, or I find some wonderful music, or a great show on telly. Sometimes all it takes is a well knit piece of some garment or throw. Best booster lately is a well spun length of wool. Or I go out and meet up with my friends and we knit and laugh and tell stories.

It's interesting to note that since I left Korea, my blood pressure has returned to normal, my adrenalin levels have dropped back to normal because I'm not constantly feeling the need to run away or beat the living crap out of someone. Also the amount of stress caused by people constantly lying to you is a thing of the past. Funny how that urge to rip out a throat or two diminishes when you're treated honestly, respectfully, and kindly.

My latest doctor doesn't quite get it. He's convinced that I have hypertension. My last reading was 104/65. He's agreed to d/c one of my blood pressure meds but is convinced that I will return in two weeks with headaches and soaring pressure. The only thing that would cause that would to be told that I had to go back to Korea. Now, since I like my kidneys, I'll gladly stick with the ACE inhibitor

My life has gone better here than I could've hoped. I have wonderful friends who make me laugh and who laugh at my lousy jokes. I work with good people where I"m respected (wow what a change!)

10 March 2010

March in Hawaii

Has been very interesting. A few weeks ago, Hawaii was placed under a tsunami warning due to a very serious earthquake in Chile. Fortunately this happened on a Saturday. because even though everything downtown was closed and many areas evacuated, it was not complicated by weekday workers cluttering up the sidewalks.

Up here in the highlands, there was no danger and very little notice taken of the proceedings. My greatest annoyance was the siren (in my back yard) that went off at 0600. I have no desire to see 0600 on a Saturday...ever. Seriously, it would take a wave of "Hollywood disaster movie proportions" to get anywhere near me. It would surely screw up off shore deliveries as I'm sure it would damage the docks and the harbor, and I might have to do my cooking and water heating on the Weber for a while, but there was no impact to me this time.

I'm still trying to relearn cooking for 1 person. It's very frustrating for me because I always end up with too much. I'm also too cheap to fire up the Joe, because even if you use a small amount of coal, you'll still be wasting "fire" every time you want to grill up a steak, burger, or salmon side. It's sad.

I'm working on a lovely shawl that took me ages to finally get my head around the pattern, but now, I've got it and the knitting is going very well. In conjunction with this, I have discovered the wonder that is the "safety line" and keep a tapestry needle and some unwaxed dental floss in my "junk" bag.

Soon, I will have another source of yarns for knitting. I've joined the ranks of the spinners (I'm an old spinster now...all I need is a few more cats then I can become the crazy old witch that lives down the street with all the cats). I've got two lovely Golding drop spindles (a light one for fine fibers and a heavier one for heavier wools) and a Kromski Sonata portable spinning wheel (Happy Birthday to me) that I'm learning. Pretty soon it's going to be "full service...knit/crochet, spin, dye. I may have to draw the line at raising the fiber animals. The landlord probably wouldn't appreciate it much and I'm not sure how sheepy/goaty critters would do in the tropics. I would like to add a dying operation when I can find an appropriate place to handle the chemicals.

By the way, I'm currently on the lookout for some nice patio furniture for the back so I can sit out there and enjoy a cuppa or maybe a meal.  Read or even spin outside.  I've got this lovely weather, I would like to enjoy it!

Found out that our favorite hangout for Monday night knitting had a kitchen fire and is ,more than likely, closed for at least a few weeks. Looks like we'll need to relocate for a bit.


Finally, I got all the planets aligned and got my handicapped placards for the car. It's not so much the getting into the place of business, it's getting out when the shopping's done. It will make getting to work much easier, too.  Hopefully I will soon have the local doctors straightened around.  They apparently have some misapprehensions about my personal level of knowledge nor can they seem to grasp that when I was in Korea, I was NOT treated by the military and that real live Korean hospitals are different (and unless they speak/read Korean, my medical records (such as they are) will be useless.  For instance, the Korean concept of pain management is to ignore it, so I had NO treatment for my back issues.  NO physio, no medication, no support.  Just one very rude older female doctor who demanded I submit to injections of some mystery substance into my spine (right then, right now...you come with me, get injection now).  She flat refused to discuss the contents of the mystery injection, possible aftereffects, side effects, duration, goal (what it was supposed to heal, cure, help)...nothing. For all I knew, it could've been 50cc of Brylcreem, for God's sakes. Needless to say, that was met with a resounding no from me.  If you are not willing to discuss the particulars of a treatment with your patient, then you're hiding something and I'm not going to play along with that.

After that kind of medical care and knowing the fact that American Doctors think that everyone who asks for help with the management of severe, chronic pain is only looking for narcotics to either feed their addiction or sell on the street, I don't hold out too much promise for any relief/assistance.  Hell, having a qualified massage therapist to work with would help a lot, but I can't seem to get a referral.  I mention physical therapy to build up my back and other supporting structures  and am ignored.  I'm also fully expecting to be labeled as depressed because I have chronic pain.  Trust me...I'm anything but depressed.  I just keep on,  making my days, adapting along the way, so I can still do what I want to do, when I want to do it.

27 February 2010

February's almost over.

It's been a mildly cool month here in Hawaii for the last couple of weeks. Far too dry and the plants are showing it. My apartment has a sprinkler system, so I only pay attention to it when the water bill comes in. I'm getting little urges to get some containers and some plants and brighten up the front entrance (shade lovers) and back yard (more direct sun). I'm thinking herbs and some flowering stuff. I need to research orchids. I wanted orchids when Michael and I lived in Korea, but he always thought the house was too dry for them. OK ,if the front "porch" is not too shady, I could try one or two inexpensive ones there, Maybe a little bench to sit there and enjoy the plants and the Chicken Sisters. Listen to tunes and knit or do some handspinning. Watch the bowl of lucky bamboo and the unique orchids.

I sow some orchids this evening as I waded through walmart looking for a nice chaise and cushions and a table for hanging out the back door. Crapped out on the chair, but saw an orchid that I swear was black. I want it, I want to see if I can grow the darn thing! I also want culinary herbs on the back porch...basil, oregano, rosemary, maybe some others. I want to see if I can grow some tomatoes. Everything has to be containerized as I'm sure that the LandLord (LL) would not appreciate me digging up the back yard. Frankly, my back wouldn't appreciate my digging up the lawn either.

I've been working on the house, albeit slowly as there's something going on with my feeties that make standing up for more than 45 minutes painful. I need to get some more stuff unpacked, but the problem is what do I do with it between unpackaging and putting away. I found a brandy new tower fan that I'd bought in the PX in Korea before I PCSed. It's all new, so I will take it up to the bedroom since the old one there is squeaky. It's good to have the air problem taken care of before it gets hot this summer.

I'm finding bits of the kitchen. I think I'll get rid of all the mismatched corelle and get a new set that matches everything. I'd like to get rid of all the mismatched stainless and get a nice service for 4 there, too. Also going to get rid of all the bent up cookie sheets, pans, and other bake-wear that's gone gnarly. I can get new, I can afford it. Two things I can't wait to find are the Kitchen Aid mixer (I plan on pimping it up with Hawaiian type stickers rather than flames. Every Alton Brown wannabe has flames on their kitchen aid). The Mighty Mixer of Aloha will improve the bread side of the house and enable lots of other culinary techniques.

I found my cheap Japanese mandolin that makes slicing vege so much more fun. I also found ball jars at the store. There could be a small batch of variously pickled beets coming our way. I know that canner pot is somewhere! I'm also looking for the food sucker as I'm tired of throwing things away because I can't get around to eating them. I'm just on the verge of getting a new one and when the other one is found, gifting it to a young family (Navy or AF) who can save some food budget by sealing their leftovers.

I have this idea that I can get two sets of nice professional steel five shelf units (like the ones the Koreans ruined), drag out the sewing machine and some attractive aloha fabric for covers and use them in my little dining area to store stuff I dont' have room for in the really tiny cabinets. Making covers for them will keep the stuff in it is kept private and clean (the covers can be easily washed). There's also room under the stairs for a small bookshelf that will take care of the cookbooks. My dining table is really quite small (seats 4 comfortably), so there's room in that area for the shelves.

The house will come slowly. The hardest part is that there's no place to out the "de-boxed" stuff till I get more boxes out. It's a compounding kind of problem. Stuff may go from one room to another till enough is cleared out that things can be arranged. I would like to have one of the bedrooms cleared out enough to accommodate a blow-up mattress and guest, although I don't know when I would be comfortable enough to actually let someone else stay in my place. I want to cook and have friends over, but it seems right now that would be a first floor only proposition (public vice private part of the house).

I've been exploring spinning wheels and found a couple that I would consider buying. the problem is that most of the mainland companies want to charge exorbitant fees to ship. One website I went to today wanted $96 to ship what would amount to 12 lb or less in a box about 20x20x6 (in it's original packaging, no fancy repacking) for the UPS ground fee (from the UPS website) of approximately $56 plus an unexplained upcharge of an additional $40. Now, Mr, Wheelshop owner. Can you please tell me what the additional $40 is for? I don't mind paying honest shipping charges, but don't think I'm going to sit back and accept your gouge simply because I'm lucky enough to live in Hawaii. I am NOT above ordering your merchandise which you gleefully ship for free to the 48 states and having it sent to my best friend, who will forward it to me in Hawaii for the (non-inflated) shipping cost.

I find that I need to choose merchants carefully as SOME (not all) have no problem charging the customer almost the entire cost of the item purchased to ship it to the island. I know this to be true from personal experience! The moral of this rant it to always check and verify YOUR shipping costs before you order.

All this sounds really nice, but getting motivated to actually do this is not easy. I have my days when I don't feel like doing ANYTHING after work but sitting quietly and knitting or watching a movie. It's been 14 months since Michael died, and it feels like a splinter of glass in my heart every day. There's so much I want to tell him and I need his support and encouragement so badly.

But I just keep on keeping on.

14 February 2010

Valentine's Day 2010

The late husband and I had a tradition for V-Day that started when he was hospitalized after falling off a second story roof. He had broken his pelvis in 5 places and shattered his left elbow, so he wasn't going anywhere for a while. He'd been beefing about the lousy hospital food, so on the way to visit him, I stopped at a local grocery and bought a pair of 8" tapers, holders for the candles, and a bouquet of flowers. Then I went by our favorite Middle Eastern carryout and built a dinner for two. Quick like a bunny, I hied myself off to the hospital while dinner was still warm and surprised him with a full out Valentine dinner. The floor nurses loved it and left us alone all evening.

After that, we ALWAYS had Middle Eastern food for Valentines. Even in Seoul, we had Middle Eastern food for Valentine's Day. I may well find myself a Middle Eastern restaurant today. Then again, I may not.

I recently got myself a drop spindle after I was started down the road of fibery compulsion by a friend. I've been spinning at least a little bit every day. I even took the spindle to work the other day because I anticipated some downtime. I've taught myself to put spin on with my feet (which makes for a much longer yarn before you have to wind on). I've been looking at fiber online, trying to decide what I want to spin next. I love the feel of the fibers and I love that with no more than a simple twist, I can make that handful of fluffy stuff into strong, beautiful, useful yarn. Cool.

I am tempted by so much...silk caps and hankies that are already dyed or that I could dye myself (maybe should not consider using dyes in a rented home, yah?). Tussah silk top/roving that shines in the light. Silk/merino blends or BFL. Corriedale. Blends with other fibers...There's SO much to try. I'm also looking at spinning wheels because I would like to be able to make enough plied yarn for larger projects. I'm lucky in that I can afford these things.

I'm taking some time off work in the next few weeks and I will use that time to get my kitchen FINALLY in order. The urge to cook has become overwhelming. So much so that I've been reconsidering the cookbook library. It's kind of hard finding cookbooks that are NOT geared to the beginner or amateur home cook. I feel my skills are beyond that, so I look for specialized books. I may have to move on to the professional "text" books and learn to rely on myself to compose meals from the components I have already learned. Pick a protein and a starch. A nice vege, maybe a sauce to go with. Consider other parts of the meal and really think about the wine or other drink to go with. Don't forget dessert or SOUP! Appetizers.

I wonder if the occasional dinner party would be possible (after the house is organized and guest ready). I could invite friends from work like Sherry and Terry, or George and Cathy. Robert and Chioko, too. There would be times to pull out the grill and take the party to the back yard. Maybe once or twice a month. I just need to cook and there is so much lovely food here in Hawaii. Wonderful produce and the best tasting tomatoes I've EVER eaten. If I can score some tomorrow with some whole milk buffalo mozzarella, I feel a Caprese salad coming on.

I think I'll price some outdoor furniture...you know, a table and chairs, maybe a chaise or glider, too. Don't want the back to look redneck trashy, but would like a comfortable place to eat and handout outside. It would also require some potted plants and other container gardening.

May as well see if I can get the old bread process going again, although, if I can find a fine crusty french baguette or an Italian with "chew' I may stick to biscuits and "pastry". I'll bet I can still make a wicked scratch chokkie cake and creme brulee's are easy peasy.

I'm also going by the Wholepaycheck this weekend to try some fish maybe, a handful of fingerling potatoes. check the other meat sections...expand the cheese rep and maybe MAYBE get a bottle of wine and try again. A nice slab of grilled, slightly smoked, wild salmon with smashed potatoes, maybe something green with (need to look for fish compatible green veg. And a lovely bottle of Western Pacific (Wilamette valley etc.) Pinot Noir with lots of dark cherries and black raspberry. I like my wines Big Forward and fruity. I just need to find a way to keep the wine fresh so I don't have to try to drink the whole bottle myself. After all, If you're going to test the recipe, you've got to taste the whole thing. You wouldn't an otherwise well prepared dinner ruined because the wine is shit.

Well, I'm missing Michael again, but I will always miss Michael. There will always be a spot in my heart where Michael lives, for we gave our hearts to each other and I know he carries my heart still, even though he's gone on ahead to the Summerlands and waits near the bridge. Michael would be delighted at the idea of having people over for a dinner party. He loved entertaining. I may yet chicken out...the solitude is so comforting at times. I would still like some outdoor furniture to enjoy this Hawaii weather. Perhaps while I'm out I can stop by costco, or home depot and check out the Irish Furniture (at least an adjustable chaise and a side table.

05 February 2010


I was supposed to leave today for a business trip to the East Coast. On Monday, I postponed the trip for a week. The East Coast is currently being absolutely hammered by a winter storm of "historical proportions".

I am not anywhere near the East Coast.

04 February 2010

Made it through January

So, I made it through the first year of no Michael. It's been awfully hard. I miss being able to reach out and touch him. I always felt so warm and safe with him. He would come into the kitchen and come up from behind me and just wrap his arms around me, lay his cheek in the top of my head and just hug. I loved it when he did that. He would come up behind me as I sat at the computer and give my shoulders a little rub and nuzzle my neck a little.

We were a very physical couple. Oh, not in that skanky, kissy-wissy, make-out in public kind of way, but we held hands a lot or walked arm in arm. Usually, when we sat together either our shoulders or thighs were touching. I miss the touching so much that I dream about it sometimes. I had a wonderful dream, not long after he died that he came to me as I was sleeping and gently brushed the hair from my forehead and softly kissed me. Then he was gone. It woke me up. Just the other night, I had another dream that he had come up behind me like he used to and just wrapped his arms around me and held me with his chin gently resting on my shoulder. I could feel so much love and security. I wanted that feeling to last forever. That dream woke me up, too.

I miss the touching, the closeness. I miss the warm, safe feeling I got when he held me. At the risk of making this sound self pitying, it hurts to realize That I will never be held again. Never to be touched, he never to have my back scratched again, never to be held again, never to have silly little "nothings" murmured in my ear.

I think the hardest part of adapting to Michael's absence is adapting to the lack of touch.

Otherwise, with the exception of missing Michael, I'm quite likely the happiest I've ever been. I've got a great job with people that are honest, respect me, seem to like me, and are glad I'm there (what a switch, honest management!) I LOVE Hawaii and am considering selling the house to buy one here.

I looked at a picture of the rental house the other day and it made me so sad. Michael and I were going to retire there, but without him, I just can't bear to look at what might have been our future. We had made so many plans to fix that little house up. So many flowers and plants (Michael was a wonderful gardener). Now the house just makes me sad because it deserves to be loved and I just don't really care anymore except that Michael loved the house. Without him, that house could never be my home.

New developments?? I've taken up hand spinning fiber from a drop spindle. Maybe pictures next time.

I'm making progress. I have a job I love. I make good money (Thank Deity). My health is still ok, except for my back. I'm a lucky broad and I'm grateful to Michael, because so much of this was put into motion when we were a couple just visualizing our way to a good life. Now I just have to keep working. Keep concentrating on all that is right and good and helping others when I can. AND not to forget to be grateful for my friends and opportunities.

Thanks y'all...you know who you are!