Tuesday, October 24, 2006

The insomnia bug has bitten me again...

So, again with the no sleep. Well, that's not true. I've fallen asleep and woken up about one hundred times already. So I decided to get up and do something useful. Like read stuff online. And attempt to type with no lights/contact/glasses on. The contact and glasses is not an either/or thing. I wear both. At once. The glasses are to correct the vision in my left eye, and the contact is to help correct my awfully nearsighted right eye. So that I can wear cool glasses, because waaaaaayyyyyy back when, when I didn't wear contacts, my glasses were a nasty combination of one normal-sized lens, and one coke-bottle lens. Very attractive. There was a point to that whole story. Let me try and remember what that was. Oh yeah...I'm seeing how proficient I am at typing. So far, so good, but if I make any huge cutting-and-pasting corrections, my face will be up close and personal with the keyboard.

So a date has been set for Olivia and I to leave. We are going on the fourth of November. We're flying, because it's getting further into winter, and I just don't want to drive through the mountain passes. Been there, done that.

I was talking to my mom on IM today, and she made one comment that totally pushed me back into my chair. And made me cry. She wrote, "It's really amazing how strong you can be, when you really have to." Words are very powerful that way. I consider my mom a pretty strong person, and for her to see that in me, really meant a lot. Because I don't see myself that way sometimes. I get so scared sometimes that my voice cracks, and one of my legs starts shaking. Shaking so much that I feel like I can't support my own weight.

Mostly, I get scared about the future. I haven't worked in nearly seven years. And there's some other things I haven't done in that time, either. I haven't paid a bill. Balanced a cheque book. Done the primary grocery-shopping. Gotten an oil change for a car. Remembered the tires need balancing and such.

But, there have been things that I have gotten the courage to do. I can jump five lanes of traffic on I-5 in less than a half mile to make the exit. I can take Olivia out to Seattle, just because she loves it. I can figure out online banking. I can call the same Human Resources person repeatedly, trying to actually get her at her desk.

I can find my voice. And maybe a greater sense of myself, not only for me, but for Olivia.

And I will be okay.

Monday, October 23, 2006

Spa day...

Michelle and I went to InSpa today. It was amazing. I had an hour long massage, and it was amazing how many knots were in my back. A long time ago, I used to go monthly for half-body massages. I worked in a high-end retail store, and standing for eight to twelve hours a day in heels did a number on my lower back. Go figure, right?

Well, the woman working on my back today suggested that I not wait eight years to get another one. I didn't fall asleep during my massage, like I used to. Instead, I fell asleep during my facial.

I have the unnerving ability to almost fall asleep anywhere. If I am warm, and comfortable, and the least bit sleepy, I can be out instantly. I can be sitting up, lights on, and still fall asleep.

Anyways, it was a nice surprise, and one that will be treasured for a long time.

Saturday, October 21, 2006

Day at the Zoo

Olivia's been wanting to go to the zoo for a few days now, and since today was a really nice day, the two of us went. We saw all the animals that she wanted to see. Well, all she really cared about seeing were the elephants. We got a really close-up view of one of them, so that totally made her day.

Since it was such a beautiful day, I got some really good scenery shots. Autumn is definitely my favourite season, because the light makes everything look better. Richer. More golden.

Downtown Kirkland
So, after we walked around for three hours, we decided that it was time to go home. Olivia fell asleep as soon as we hit Aurora Ave. Since she needed the sleep, I took the very scenic route home. Lake Washington, viewed from Lake Washington Blvd.

Took the 520 bridge across Lake Washington, and drove up Lake Washington Blvd in Kirkland. It's one of my favourite streets to drive along.

Then, I drove up the 202 through Woodinville. (I said it was the very scenic route.) Woodinville has a bunch of wineries there, and they give tours and tastings. One day, I'd like to go to DeLille Cellars. I haven't tried any of the wines from there, but I like the building. Makes sense, right?

All in all, it was a nice little adventure that we had.

Friday, October 20, 2006

Hee hee...


Well, this boosts my ego just a tad...;)...

Thursday, October 19, 2006


So 'professional mover' is one job that I don't think I'd be good at. I average about two boxes of stuff a day. I just like to think that I'm very...I'm looking for a word...hmmm...meticulous? Okay...it's late...I'll settle with that.

So I was watching Ghost Hunters on SciFi tonight, and one part just cracked me up. They were investigating the O.K. Corral, and in the museum, they had mannequins dressed up and posed as the people who lived there during the time of the big gunfight. It totally reminded me of a summer job that I had years ago. I worked for the Tourism department in my hometown, and they ran a Railway Museum. And an Information booth. No one wanted to work at the museum. There were two other workers besides me, and I had to do the scheduling. Everyone had to do equal time between both, and it was like pulling teeth to get people to do the shifts out there. It was in a very isolated spot, and on a good day, you'd get maybe a couple of people. Plus, the building was old, musty, and kind of creepy. Okay...I admit...I hated it out there too.

See...creepy, right?
To top it off, they had the mannequin thing going on too. The building was an old railway station that was set up to look like it had when it was operational. So, of course, the Tourism people thought it would add character to it to have life-sized mannequins dressed up, posing as people waiting in the lobby for the next train.

There was nothing like sitting at the desk, all by yourself...reading...waiting for someone to show up, and catching a glimpse of one of those things out of the corner of your eye.

Paul and his girlfriend, Keely.
So, one day, I came up with the brilliant idea of making my younger brother, Paul, go out there with me. Keep me company.

Part of the opening procedure was to unlock all of the outside shutters on the windows, open them up, and latch them to the building. So, as I walked around the building, and opened all the shutters, my brother was inside the museum, looking around.

Or so I thought.

Paul is an interesting character, with a twisted warped different sense of humour. As I opened up the last set of shutters, I happened to look up. He thought it would be funny to take one of the mannequins and prop it up against the window.

I don't know what was louder: my scream, or his laughter.

Funny guy.

Sunday, October 15, 2006

Rainy day Sunday...

I finished The Hungry Tide while I drank my morning coffee. It was raining steadily, so I was content to curl up in the chair by the fireplace and read while listening to the rain.

No, this is not a picture of my house, just something that I found that I liked...hmm...it would be nice, though...

Yesterday, I read another book: How to Be a Canadian by Will and Ian Ferguson. That was truly one of the funniest books I have ever read. I seriously laughed non-stop throughout the entire thing. It's not often that I laugh continuously like that; but when you find something that affects you like that, it's pretty amazing.

I went out today to Barnes and Noble, looking for it. And after aimlessly wandering around the store, I found that I'll have to order it online. But, I settled on a Pumpkin Spice Latte, so all was not lost.

I'm currently reading Red Azalea by Anchee Min. Min's writing is more sparse than Ghosh's: where his descriptions are lush, compelling you to slow down to take it all in, her descriptions are rather matter-of-fact, and I've found myself breezing through three-quarters of it in a matter of a few hours.

My copy...
I also went out in search of bubble wrap, to wrap up my paintings. The local Fred Meyer has undergone a massive remodel, and every day they move everything around. Found the packing supplies aisle, but no bubble wrap. I have a very large box in which to ship them, but nothing to cushion them.

I do not paint small things. There are two canvases that are three feet by three feet, one that is three feet by four feet, and the smallest is two feet by three feet. This is my favourite...a copy of a Louise Cook painting.

Original Louise Cook...

It would be much easier if I did paint little eight by ten inch canvases.

Thursday, October 12, 2006

Good things come in small packages...

Technology is an incredible thing. As much as I curse it sometimes, because I don't understand how to do a lot of complex computer things, it is amazing. I can chat with my friend Michelle, across the cul-de-sac, or my mom, halfway across the continent.

As I've mentioned in a much earlier post, I have some unique fitting issues, so I like to have custom-made clothing. Plus, I don't like to look like everyone else. Hard to tell that by the inch-long orangy-blonde hair, and cat's eye glasses emblazoned with rhinestones on the sides.
Image from www.hotpatterns.com

I came across this pattern, and absolutely fell in love with it. So, a few mouse clicks later, this pattern was en route from Florida, to my house in Washington state.

Because, my lifestyle screams that I totally need a silk party dress. And, while we're going with this...we may as well go all the way.

Image from www.indianselections.com

A Google search on sari fabric came next. So...another few mouse clicks, I had ordered myself a coppery-brown silk sari with a sumptuous amount of gold work on the borders. And where did this gem come from? Nagpur, India.

It arrived today in a smallish envelope. Five yards of silk really folds up to basically nothing.

But it is beautiful.

So, it is amazing, to be able to order something from halfway around the world. The package arrives at my door, and totally makes my day.

Technology is an incredible thing.

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

I do a lot of reading...

And sometimes, I find things that I just have to borrow, because I like it so much.

I found this on Sarah's blog. Thanks for sharing it.

Feeling much better mentally...

...just in time to get a cold. I just hope it's not one of those cold/flu/ancient gypsy curse-type things. So, I sit here, waiting for my NyQuil to kick in, chatting with my friend Michelle, who lives across the street. The 21st century version of two cans and a string, I guess. Ok...so it's across the cul-de-sac. It would have to be a very long string.

I started to feel the sudden onset of my cold this afternoon, while Olivia and I were having a tea party in her room. I laid down on the trundle bed, and she served up our pretend food. I asked her if she could feed me...so she started with "Ok...here comes the engine...choo choo... Here comes the coal car...."

Ok...so some of her favourite books are a little on the antique side.

Well...I think my NyQuil had suitably kicked in...love the Denis Leary rant on NyQuil... Think of it every time I take it.

It's the little things that make you smile.

Sunday, October 08, 2006

I was thinking some more about my morning yesterday, and I finally realized the story that really got to me.

We broke off into groups, based on the ages of our children, and there was this one guy in my group. He was about my age, or looked about my age...I'm really awful at guessing. Anyways...we were supposed to introduce ourselves to each other, and give the Reader's Digest version of our situations. This guy explained that he had two little girls, ages four and two-and a-half. He said that five years ago, he was about to break up with his girlfriend, when she found out she was pregnant. He decided to do what he said was the honourable thing to do, and marry her, even though he knew that he did not love her. And then, he said, they decided to have another child. He said that he was fully prepared to live his life miserably, with a woman he didn't love, just for the sake of his two daughters. The utter sadness in his face as he told this was just heartbreaking.

I really get affected by the emotions of others. All I need is to see someone cry, and I'm a mess.

Ok...I think I'm going to go do something fun. Sit by the fire...drink some coffee...watch the Law and Order marathon on USA.

It's always a good day when there's a Law and Order marathon...

Saturday, October 07, 2006

What I did with my Saturday morning...

So the powers that be in the Snohomish County Superior Court has made it mandatory that everyone who is going through a divorce must attend a Parenting class. So, from 9 am this morning, until 1:15...that's where I was. After I found it, of course. Usually, I have a pretty good sense of direction. I printed out the direction, double checked it on Mapquest, and thought I knew where I was going. So after doubling back a few times around the same block, I realized that I was about 30 blocks away from where I was supposed to be. And it was 8:50. AND the information sheet said that no late people would be admitted. It also didn't help that I wasn't driving my own car. I drive an SUV, which also holds the car seat, and since I was going to be gone for several hours, I took the Tiburon. It's an unnerving feeling looking up at all the SUVs that occupy the roads. But I digress...

It was very sad to hear other people's stories...like the guy who asked, "What do I tell my kids when they ask where their mom is? I don't know where she is, because she's a drug addict who disappeared three months ago."

By the end of the session, I was ready to cry.

I needed a pick-me-up, so Olivia and I are now watching "Project Runway". It's the only reality show that I watch...not regularly, but if I see it on...I watch it. It's, um...educational? Actually, I find it amazing to watch them create an outfit...to have it evolve from a sketch to a completed item in a matter of hours.

Sunday, October 01, 2006

It's the little things...

I've been thinking more and more about the idea of the big moments in life, and the little moments, and how much value you place on them. Sure, the big moments are great...the incredible trips, or the dinners in fancy restaurants...but they don't make life truly special. Or, at least, to me they don't.

I don't think it works out well when people who view life so differently come together. When one views life as getting from point A to point B in the fastest time possible, with minimal interruptions, they don't understand why the other person wants to stop, enjoy the moment, and take everything in. And vice versa. When one person is more focused on the journey than the end result, the other person can't understand why the other person has to take so long to do anything. I'm not saying that one way of living is better than the other...it's just that they sometimes don't mesh too well.

Last year, we went on vacation to San Francisco. Absolutely beautiful city. I'd have to say it's one of my favourites. We were walking around in Union Square,
and I spotted a little French cafe. I suggested that we get a coffee and sit at one of the sidewalk tables.


"I don't know...just to get a coffee and watch the people go by."

We sat in quiet contemplation. I watched the people wander by. The shadows on the building across the street. The birds picking at the crumbs on the sidewalk.

After five minutes of sitting, Daemond looked at me and asked, "So, how long are we supposed to sit here?"

Spending time with Olivia has really made me be more focused on enjoying the moment. Just going for a walk with her is an experience: rocks have to be kicked; ants have to be conversed with; shadows have to be danced with.

I believe that how you view the ordinary is what truly makes your life extraordinary.

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