Aging, Animals, anxiety, Books, Cooking/Baking, Creativity, Dogs, dreams, Emotions, family, Food, Friends, Gardening, Guitar, Learning, Life, Love, Music, Nature, Photography, Reading, Tattoos, Thinking, Travel, Writing

Learning and Loving

It is a good sign. The sun is out. It’s not exactly warm but it will have to do. I may take Stella out for a walk on the property, just to get her out of the house. I thought about taking her with for my tattoo but that will be a several hour process and I am pretty sure that she doesn’t want to be stuck in the car for that long.

I am hoping to enhance the final product of the tattooing by telling him that I plan to send a photo to both Kane Hodder as well as the magazine HorrorHound of the finished piece. Fingers crossed! 1:30pm is my appointment. I need to leave a few minutes early to go to an ATM to get the money out. I am both excited and apprehensive. I know that he has but a lot of time and effort into the flash work for this. (Flash work is the drawing the artist makes so you can see what is going to be tattooed on you. Usually this will be a general outline with as little or no detail as the artist chooses. This will also be the stencil that is used on the body for the piece.) And I know that he wants to go as big as he can to get in the detail on Kane’s face. But I just can’t spend $500 on a tattoo right now. That was the price for the size that he had drawn up. I about choked.

There is so much that I want to do and learn! I don’t know where to start! I was looking for a book I had gotten on local rocks (it seems to have grown legs and wandered off) and I see my dvds for photography, writing, yoga… Then there are all the research books I have. Archaeology, learning to write ancient Egyptian, learning Italian, learning Latin, learning French (a refresher for me since I had it in both high school and college, but I am very rusty). And don’t get me started on all the gardening and cooking books and magazines (mostly acquired from Mom)! There is just soooo much! Oh, and sailing. I forgot about that one. And guitar. I have a LOT of guitar stuff from previous classes. But you get the idea. There is so much that I am interested in and want to learn/learn about that I honestly don’t know where to start. Maybe I do. If I write everything on individual slips of paper and put them in a container, I can pull them out at random. Maybe spend a week working on whatever it is then put the slip back in the jar.

Yesterday was Stella’s Gotcha Day. I found her on the side of the road four years ago on that day. Today Essie has been gone 3 months exactly. I look on the table beside the laptop and I see my glass and silver heart box that I got at the resale shop the last time Linda and I were together. Moose’s scarf (that he always tried to shake off) is tied to my leather satchel. Good memories and bad this morning. I’m trying not to get bogged down by the bad. I have plenty to be thankful for and a big future ahead of me. Stella is sitting beside me telling me that there is love and attentions that need to be given at this moment. So I’d better wrap this up. I don’t have any new photos to share but I will share Stella’s Easter photo. I might even send it to Cadbury candy to see if she can be the next Cadbury bunny! Thanks for reading and stay safe!

Aging, Animals, anxiety, Creativity, Dogs, dreams, Emotions, family, Gardening, Guitar, Learning, Life, Love, Medical, Music, Nature, Photography, retail, Tattoos, the World, Thinking, Writing

Contemplations: Life, Love, Happiness and Banana Chips

Moose’s anniversary started with a beautiful sunrise. Once I got Essie out after eating she did the strangest thing. She was sniffing along the back fence line like she was looking for something. She stopped right at Moose’s grave and just stood and stared. Then she woofed and bounced at his grave like something was there. I thought maybe she saw a deer or something but there was nothing there.

I bought some banana chips to share with Moose today. It was our special treat together. It was one of the few things we could still share together after the got sick. Stella will eat them but Essie mostly won’t. That’s ok.

Essie still hasn’t gone potty that we have seen but we have missed a lot. This morning was a good example. I kept repeating that I needed to watch her while she was outside but I completely forgot because Stella decided that she wasn’t going out so I was trying to convince her to go out when I realized that Essie had been out for a few minutes already. When I got to the door all she was doing was sniffing around. But I will try my best to keep a closer eye on her the rest of the day.

In bed last night I made another to do list. It is all pretty straight forward. Things like work on my novel, make my list of meetings for work for the month (I guess the store manager is going on vacation and making several weeks in advance), work on my guitar, clean out my wooden fountain pen (I really want to like this pen… but it is such a hassle to get the ink to flow enough to write with that it is quickly becoming an expensive paperweight) and take photos (I should be uploading to my web site as well).

I am debating about getting another tattoo. I have several ideas on what I want but I am not sure what to do next. I am leaning toward more butterflies. I want to get local butterflies on random spots. I have my Monarch (I get so many compliments on it!) and I really love the detail work he did on it. Soooo I would like to get that same effect all over. The other one I want is something to do with books. I just can’t come up with a good concept. So I guess I can scour my photos for butterflies and see about getting a few.

Another goal today is to clean out my long window box. It will fit in the kitchen windows so my goal is to get the nasty dirt out from the mess I got from work and fill it with the Miracle Gro that I have. From there I will start some seeds going. It is a sunny set of windows and there is a heater vent near by so it will stay warm. I thought about moving George there (he is my new succulent) but it would be awfully lonely for him. He needs direct sunlight so I have him on the shelves by the sliding glass door. I just worry that it is too cold for him. That being said he is doing fine so far. Sooooo….

Ok I had better stop of now. I am just rambling on. I want to thank everyone one for their kind words over the past week. It means a lot. I hope you all have an amazing day. Thanks for reading and stay safe!

Animals, anxiety, Books, Creativity, Dogs, dreams, Emotions, family, Food, Guitar, Holiday, Learning, Life, Love, Music, Nature, Photography, Reading, retail, the World, Thinking, Travel, Writing

Quality Fun With My Man

Everything feels off this morning. I am worried about Essie as her tummy is upset again. We may be going to the vet to start the new year. Yay. All she wants is to be loved on by me. I can hear her tummy across the room even over the furnace. If I lose her now… I can’t even cope.

Yesterday was an amazing afternoon with my Hubby! We ended up downtown Traverse (after several frustrating loops to find parking) and wandered a bit. It was a bit more wandering than we had intended. L’Amical was closed. So was the next restaurant. The one after that was short staffed so there was not one bussing the tables when they became empty. After a bit of waiting and no one asking if we needed to be seated we left. There were a few other choices along the way but none sounded good. So we ended up a Mackinaw Brewing for brunch. As always the food was excellent. The server even more so. Sadly I could not taste the flavors of either of our beers (I know it was me because Chris was able to pick out flavors used in the brewing process). To me they both tasted like water. Instead I decided (much to my happiness and giggles) to have a glass of “Sex”. That I could taste. (“Sex” is the name of a locally made champagne. Their other products have equally fun names.) The server and laughed together about me having “Sex” in public while Chris looked on wishing the moment would end, lol.

After brunch we made our way to the blessed bookstore. Sigh… I love our local bookstore! I got us both some much needed caffeine (double cappuccino with an extra shot of espresso for me and a large chai for Chris) (I had a good chat with a guy who worked on the local tall ship Madeline) and made my way through the store. The first thing I grab when I walk in the door is a copy of Michael J. Fox’s No Time Like The Future. This has been on my wish list for a bit. All three of his books. This happens to be the latest release. By the time we leave I have two books and a magazine (annoyingly I think I may already have a copy of the magazine). Chris got to motorcycle magazines (I will thumb through those when he is finished 😁).

From the bookstore we head to the local music shop. Chris needs a strap for his acoustic guitar and I figure I might as well get new strings for mine. We look through the strap selection and gasp a bit at the prices of the ones we like. Chris meanders a bit through the store ooing and ahhing over all the toys. While he is distracted I grab the strap that we both kinda liked and get that and my strings. When he comes back to pick out one of the cheapy straps I tell him to put it back and take his bag. He reaches for the cheapy strap again and I again tell him to put it down and take his bag. Then the penny drops (the guy that waited on me is behind the counter grinning the whole time). He looks in the bag and I get a big hug and thank you.

The next stop (this time we are on the road home) is Meijer’s. I end up leaving with the cutest little succulent! His name is George. After the quick run in that store we get a little closer to home and stop at Tractor Supply to get more canned food for the girls. While there I try on jeans (I can’t find a good fit even in mens sizes) and boots (I just want a plain basic cowboy boot… nothing fancy, no pointed toes or short boots). Nothing I want. A gal suggests that I try online and get it delivered to the store (I am thinking why not get it delivered to my house and save me the trip?) since they have a larger selection online. I agree and we depart with the canned dog food (Momma got a toy for each of the girls at Meijers so I was able to not go down the toy aisles there).

When we finally made it home I fed the girls (after we played for awhile with our new toys) and hunkered in bed for some serious reading. I am still reading two other books (one of which is a loaner from a friend and I need to really give it back soon) buuuuut I had to start the one by Michael J. Fox. As of right now I only have 78 more pages to go. Out of 238 pages. Ahem. Did I mention that I really wanted this book?

So we’ll hopefully all get some rest today. I will probably finish the one book and maaaaybe start another. I will write a review on the book when I am finished reading it. I am hoping to share some of the photos I took while we were out and about. I’m not sure how many I will be able to do as I took them with my phone which means they will take up more space in my media on here than my Nikon (I can download those as a smaller size). So we’ll see. I hope all of you have the best 2022 that you deserve! Thanks for all the love and support this year! Thanks for reading and stay safe! See you next year!

Animals, anxiety, Books, Creativity, Dogs, dreams, Emotions, family, Guitar, Learning, Life, Love, Music, Nature, Photography, Reading, retail, Thinking, Writing

Playing the Blues

For whatever reason both girls are out here with me. This early normally they go back to bed after breakfast. The missing snow has found us. The wind is blowing it, often times in a horizontal wall, from East to West. Then the wind will stop abruptly and the snow seems to just hang in midair.

I know I got sleep. I refused to look at the clock so I couldn’t tell you how much. I am just looking forward to coming home at 2pm. Tomorrow we can sleep in because I close. I am closing cashier but there are three of us. I’m not sure why we need so many but it will allow me to come home briefly to take delivery of the replacement monitor for Chris.

I spent a good part of yesterday reading. We did start to learn the song Everlong. Chris got further than I did but I tried a little. I have a bit that I would like to have learned by this weekend. We’ll see how that goes.

I am trying not to poo poo everything. It just feels like I am trying to do too much. Like I am setting myself up to fail.

I had better get this wrapped up so I can get ready to go. Thanks for reading and stay safe!

Animals, anxiety, Books, Creativity, Dogs, dreams, Emotions, family, Friends, Guitar, Learning, Life, Love, Movies, Nature, Photography, Reading, retail, the World, Thinking, Travel, Writing

Giving Until You Can’t, Then Finding A Balance

Dealing with the public can be/is exhausting. The past few days I have been buzzing around work giving 110%. Fixing problems with a smile, listening to customers and coworkers alike while giving hugs and drying tears. About 5pm last night my everything was done and wanted desperately to go home.

Living in a small town makes my workplace a central fixture for the community. I love being a part of that. I love being able to make a difference in people’s lives. Writing for the local paper also helps me do that. Even the simple task of listening to a meeting and writing a little summary can help someone who cannot make it to said meeting. (A lot of our meetings went on Zoom last year but a good portion of them have opted out of continuing that. I don’t think everyone- both the government officials and the public- realized how much it was needed. Many older or sick people were able to learn about what was going on in the local government firsthand. People became interested in what was going on.)

I feel bad not wanting to go anywhere in my off time. People want to go out and meet but I usually just want to stay home. I spend so much time “on” that I need some time to be “off”. Even at home I want to be left alone sometimes. I just enjoy the quiet and solitude (which is why I love having the 5 acres that we live on). I am grateful that Chris works nights sometimes because he will sleep in later and the girls will go back to sleep until he gets up. The house is silent. No one needs or wants anything from me. I can just enjoy being.

Spring and Summer are best for me because I can go outside and enjoy Nature for extended periods. I will sit and read for hours. Or conversely take photos and just enjoy the out of doors. I don’t like being cooped up in the house for extended periods despite being a homebody. But if I am I tend to either lose myself in books or go through my memories by looking through various treasure troves I have around the house. That can be a good or a bad thing depending on my mindset.

Something I have (that I forget about) are various tools to learn new things. I have various DVDs on yoga (I am not quite at an advanced level), photography, writing (I figure looking at things from another’s perspective may help me), guitar (I am an extreme novice in this despite various classes over the years) and various languages (mostly Italian since that is my current love… but I would like to brush up on my French as it has been many years since I have had to use it consistently). Most of the time though I make excuses not to do anything. Sometimes that is good but other times… I say that because I know that once I get involved in something I will get interested and follow through. Atleast for a little while.

I see that I have gone on here for quite a bit. I will wrap this up and get it posted. Thanks for reading and commenting! Stay safe!

Aging, Animals, anxiety, Books, Creativity, Dogs, dreams, Emotions, family, Gardening, Guitar, Learning, Life, Love, Motorcycles, Nature, Photography, Reading, retail, Riding, the World, Thinking, Writing

A Shaker Full of Everything

This morning is darkening with the impending rain. We had bits of sun here and there when we got up. Now a darkness falls upon the land. The earthy richness of the blueberry coffee I got for the Keurig is a very welcome flavor and warmth this morning. It’s not cold this morning but since we sleep with the AC on it takes me awhile to warm up in the morning.

Today is a manager day so that means I probably won’t get out until 10-10:30pm. Which would be ok but I am back at 9am tomorrow. But that means the girls and I can play more tomorrow.

I am contemplating doing a book review once a week. The one I posted last night seemed to go over really well. If I do it it will be the same thing as yesterday. I would have it as well as a regular post. Let me know what you folks think. Also let me know what genres you would be interested in. I have a wide selection here at the house so it shouldn’t be hard to do requests. Maybe call it the Wednesday Review (unless someone has a clever name they would like to suggest). Nothing concrete just getting a feel for things.

This morning I feel like my body is betraying me. I could barely get out of bed and it has been hard to move. Everything is stiff and painful. But I need to make the best of it. The girls are very understanding and don’t snatch their toys as often when I go to take them. And when we play tug-of-war they don’t pull near as hard as they could.

I did about 20 minutes on my novel last night before bed. I worked on my main character. So if I can keep that up I will be happy. My goal is 30 minutes to an hour a day on my novel. With my schedule (especially next month) all over the place I want to do small time frames so I will actually do it.

I was going to try to take my motorcycle out the other day and I couldn’t stand and keep the bike balanced, even as light as it is. So I just left it plugged in the charger. It is very frustrating. I haven’t ridden once this year. Many of you are going to ask why don’t I just sell the bike. Because I am determined to still ride.

Ok, I see that I have gone on a bit more than normal. We lost a great bassist yesterday and my mind is still processing that. We got to see the band with my Mom in concert a few years ago. It was a great time! Dusty Hill of ZZ Top will always be remembered.❤ And with that dear friends I will wrap this up. Stay safe and as always thanks for reading!

Animals, Dogs, Emotions, family, Friends, Guitar, Life, Nature, Photography, Thinking

Looking at the Good

I am still here. It is a near thing though. I haven’t had time to answer all the comments that you have left. I will do that once I get this posted. I want to only talk about the good things that have happened the past few days. There isn’t much but I am tired of only seeing the negative lately.

I think the coolest thing is that I am gonna be in a video game… and a werewolf! One of the guys I work with is learning to make video games. This time he and his girlfriend are going to make one together. I got asked yesterday if they could name a werewolf character after me. I was flattered and said yes immediately. I will see what my character will look like as soon as she is finished. I can even make suggestions (since both my coworker and myself love the color violet I suggested putting a purple streak in my fur but I am thinking violet eyes might be cool too).

We has a beautiful sunset last night. I missed a few great photos because I didn’t pull over on the way home but I still had some awesome colors once I got home. Once again the camera (I use my phone camera because the Nikon washes out the color dramatically) didn’t get all the purples and pinks that were actually in the sky but it is still a good shot.

It rained last night. That is a good thing because it has been very hot in the house for the girls. We plan to put the AC units in the windows today before I go to work. The yard also needed the rain. Even with the lush grass (that I still need to mow) things were getting dried out.

Dad and I had a good chat on Monday. He is doing well. Mom is continuing to move forward with her plans to move out here. She has a potential buyer for her place. Now we just need to find her a place out here with us. Oh and Chris got his guitar yesterday. We were worried about it getting left on the porch in the elements so I suggested leaving the garage door open and have the delivery person leave it in there. Neither of us was too keen on keeping the garage open while no one was home but alls well. I haven’t seen it yet. I’m sure it is up on the wall ready to play.

That is my list of good things. I will add what photos I can (I might not have much room left on here… I still need to go back and delete some of my early pictures for more room). Thank you for sticking with me through the past few days. I appreciate the support. Thanks for reading and stay safe!

Animals, anxiety, Books, Creativity, Dogs, dreams, Emotions, Exercise, family, Guitar, Learning, Life, Love, Motorcycles, Nature, Photography, Reading, Thinking, Writing

So Many Choices aka Where Do I Start

This morning we slept in. Mostly. I was wide awake at 4:30am for no reason. But within a few minutes Stella had darted off the bed so I followed suit. Just in time to get her outside to throw up. But I got myself back to sleep by 5:30am the the girls wanted to get up just before 8am. Funny thing is I stayed up past 10pm last night despite being wiped out doing reading and research.

Have you ever had so much around you that you wanted to do and/or learn that you didn’t know where to start? That is very much me right now. I have two novels that I am writing and researching (the werewolf story seems to be getting the most attention right now), I got three more classes that I want to do (learning guitar, creative writing and creative nonfiction) as well as the photography class. Let’s not forget the photography class that I’m already doing and the new magazines that I got in the mail the other day. Oh and the abundance of potential photographs that seem to be jumping out at me. Then I also need to keep the girls and I active which means exercise routine for me and lost of chasing, tea kettle and toy throwing for them. And let’s not forget my all important family time. When did my life get so complicated? Lol.

This morning I took a bit longer in reading other writer’s blogs. I am making an effort to try to make more comments on blogs (I know that I like to hear from my readers so it’s only fair). And there were a lot that I was drawn to comment on. Keep up the good work everyone!

Nuts. Hang on. I’m out of coffee.

Ok, I’m back. I also had to give Essie a belly rub. Anyway, there is just so much to do! I’m not even sure where to start. I have the research that is ongoing for the werewolf novel as well as my resources from my personal library to help write it (the current reference I am using is Robert J. Ray’s The Weekend Novelist. I figure if I can just work on it my two days off a week (I am fully aware that I am going to probably doing something related to the novel every day because that’s just me) this book will give me help in staying focused. I hope. I have the article that I need to research and write today. I need to do my exercises. Dad wants to chat. I need to call Mom to see how her date went the other day (the first one in almost 30 years… I am very proud of her, it took a lot for her to go out). I need to watch atleast one more class in my photography course. I have narrowed down my tire search for my Subie but I keep forgetting to call around locally. And everyone is closed today. I also need to get the motorcycle hooked up to the trickle charger (it has been bitterly cold lately so I have put it off). And apparently I need to see to the bird feeder. The chickadees are getting very vocal when they see me. On that note dear friends I suppose that I should wrap this up. I have a few good photos I will share with you (oh and I need to get some more photos uploaded onto my online shop). Thanks for reading and as always stay safe!

Ed. Note: This is my 800th blog! Yay!

Animals, Creativity, dreams, Emotions, Exercise, Guitar, Learning, Life, Motorcycles, Nature, Photography, Riding, Thinking, Writing

Setting Goals

The bird feeder is mighty busy this morning! Our latest group of visitors seem to be mourning doves. That is rather surprising to me. They are very visible this time of year one and two I don’t really like them (they were the ones that would hang out and poop on the cars and motorcycles before we got the garage built). Both myself and the dogs tend to chase the mourning doves off when they arrive. And they haven’t been around very much for the past few years.

As it turns out I have the day off. So here are my goals… Work on the novel, start my exercise routine, do some photography (this includes delving back into the Dummies Guide for the camera), do some housework and pull out one of my guitars and practice. I don’t know how much I will accomplish but I can get it all done today should I so chose without using up my whole day.

It is snowing again. I think that is big reason that all the birds are hanging out. So I guess I ought to add checking the bird feeder to the to do list. I filled it the other day…. and holy crap it’s almost empty! I looked at it from my window here and I can see a lot of trees through the windows. So fill the bird feeder….

I am also trying to mentally make plans for riding season. It will be here before I know it. And this year I need to kick my fear habit and just ride. Being close to work will help. It is a short jaunt and if I want to “go around the block” I can after work (I am already looking forward to more sun and warm weather). Regardless… I need to break through the mental block that is holding me back. I can’t justify doing track days if I’m not putting the time in on the road.

All that being said (or written as the case may be) I need to get started. I did get a bunch of cool photos yesterday so I will pick some to download from the camera and see what I took on the phone and add them to the post. I hope you all have a great day and thanks for reading! As always stay safe!

Animals, Books, Creativity, Dogs, Emotions, Guitar, History, Learning, Life, Nature, Photography, Reading, Thinking, Writing

Lost In the Bread Crumbs

The promised wind from the past few days seems to have arrived today. Winnie the Pooh would refer to it as a “rather blustery day.” My relocated bird feeder is still holding strong wedged on the branch of the maple tree. The clouds are moving around swiftly so we’ll see how that affects the weather. The ponds are icing over.

There is so much that I want to read and research and learn. I’m not sure where to start so I peck at everything like a chicken. A little here and a little there. Usually not the same subject each peck. Which limits my learning because that peck might be a book but if I don’t finish reading the book and start another that has caught my attention…. which is what I tend to do. There are research books I bought a year ago that I still haven’t finished reading. I have beginner guitar music and lessons, learning Italian, keeping up with my French, all my varied history books and biographies…. all been read a little but never finished.

I am watching Moose and hoping he is dreaming. He has been my shadow since we went to bed last night. I don’t think he feels good. When he was outside eating some of the small bit of snow we got parts of his body started shaking. I thought he was cold but then I noticed that it was just random places he was shaking. Not all over like he was cold. He is doing it again now but I can possibly contribute it to dreaming. Right? Some of the muscle shakes do not coincide with his dreaming. I may be reading too much into this but there it is.

I feel scattered. So much I want to do, things that need to be done, things that should be done. All seemingly to be done now. What to do? How to chose? I try to calm my mind and pick one thing off the important list and try to do that. Then maybe something off the list just below that. Some days this works. Other days panic sets in and I give myself a stress headache and do nothing but berate myself because I’m getting nothing done.

I can say that the birds have found the feeder in it’s new spot. I am glad. When I find a replacement I will try to hang it from one of the branches of the maple trees. I got a few photos of birds at the feeder (just outside my window yay!). One is a woodpecker (red head) and the other is a chickadee (tiny one). A lot of chickadees but there is one little blue bird trying to defend from all comers. Let me see if I can get a picture… I got a few shots that I will share. I’m gonna need to get that other bird feeder asap with the battles that are going on out there. Sheesh!

I’m going to upload the photos and try to get one thing off my have-to-do list. I don’t work until 2pm so that will give me some time. Thanks for reading and stay safe!