Wednesday, December 31, 2008

From a Saint to a Cowboy to a Steeler

Well! Last weekend, Carrie flew me up to Pittsburgh for the weekend. I loved seeing her and had a great time. It is beautiful up there; that's the farthest north I've been in the U.S. I would love to go back.

Lots of airport drama, including having a cancelled connecting flight in Philadelphia, on my way home Sunday. Contrary to that TV show, it is NOT always sunny in Philadelphia, heh... it was grey and very windy... but I did get a free hotel room and a meal. Sweet. I spent the night Benadryled-up, watching HBO movies on a very large bed. I felt like crap and still feel like crap... or "toasted shit," as I told Carrie today. It's "Sinuses Gone Wild!!" hehe...

There were bridges and rivers all over the place.

I know, I probably totally looked the tourist, taking pictures of everything... it was just so nice and even REFRESHING, to see something besides flat Louisiana.

Carrie and I went out to West Deer Township where her grandmoher's house is. It kind of felt like an in-the-sticks place but it really wasn't far from civilization.

Saturday night, though, Carrie took me out in downtown Pittsburgh to Mount Washington. It was beautiful, and the most romantic evening I've ever had in my life. True dat.

At dinner, Carrie asked me to wear her grandmother's ring. I cried, and have not taken it off once since then. So wonderful... I have never been this much in love and it's exciting to know that she feels exactly the same way. Love is such a precious thing, and I do not take it lightly. My breath has been permanently taken away.

After that, we went to Moondog's in Blawnox, PA. Carrie worked as a bartender there, years ago, and again recently when she had to spend awhile up there. They have all kinds of great live music. That night, a guy called Guitar Zack was playing. He was INCREDIBLE. Here is Guitar Zack:

There are dog caricatures painted all around the place, representing musicians who've played there and also the regulars... it really has kind of a "Cheers" atmosphere. ("NORM!!") hehe

And that sag in the ceiling is a hole that Moondog himself just will not fix... but still the people come... it makes for conversation if nothing else.

Ooh, here's me! Damn if I don't just show up everywhere, like the traveling gnome... heh...

We might be gathering all the "kids" and going to stay up in Pittsburgh for awhile together while Carrie handles details with her grandmother's estate. I love my girl. Circumstances sometimes make curves in the road of life but, as long as you're walking it with someone you love, it's all good. I love my Carrie Lynn.

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Could I maybe REALLY??

I am at CC's... pedaled here... call it being "green" or call it an attempt to justify what I knew I would consume once I got here... hehe..

To be honest, I have had a pretty sucky-feeling day today. Worked on a few projects, cleaned up a little in the house, took a nap... but mostly felt blah and uninspired. My sweet, sweet Carrie is in PA again... her grandmother passed this week and she was able to get up there in time to be with her for most of a day before she slipped away into surely a much better place. My poor sweet girl... her 2nd loss of such a huge, hit-home nature in one year... her father passed away this May. I miss her and wish I could be with her, but she knows I love her. I am taking care of all our "kids"... and thinking of her constantly.

Finally, mostly because Rocco would not stop squawking or screaming or whatever you want to call it, I decided I needed to get out of the house. So I came here, and decided I wanted to find something on the internet to inspire me or cheer me up.

I came to the realization a few weeks ago that I would love to earn a degree in Art Therapy! I mean, I really would love that. I feel a passion for this idea and that is a huge deal; as in, I didn't have a drop of passion for the BA in Social Work I earned as an undergrad. I just needed to declare a major, so I picked what 2 of my friends had picked. It was interesting and I liked most of what I studied, especially the psychology classes, but I never had a driving passion to BE a social worker. Maybe a mild desire... nothing more. I guess that's why I've never felt an overwhelming urge to trudge my little feet through the forest called grad school to become a Licensed Clinical Social Worker.

But NOW!! Now, I finally feel like I know what I want to be when I grow up. Aye karumba, this is a great feeling. Carrie bought me a book on Art Therapy for my birthday and, this evening, I have researched where I can go to attain such a degree. Most of the schools... I'd say 80-90% of schools with an Art Therapy program... are in the north. There is one I found at the University of Florida... but I hate hot weather as much as Carrie hates cold weather... so maybe if I can go somewhere in-between...?? Seriously, most of the schools are in Illinois, New York and Pennsylvania... Pennsylvania, the cold and snowy place Carrie fled for the hot humidity of New Orleans.

We'll see. It's a bit of time between here and there; Carrie is going to start a program down here that she has the same passion for; she wants to be a forensic anthropologist. I love her and want her to reach this goal and dream in her life. There are courses I'm sure I can take in the meantime, down here (meaning Louisiana, or online, or who knows...); credits to apply to an Art Therapy program later on. We'll see. I read a scripture today that said "With God, NOTHING shall be impossible." And nothing... means NOTHING!! hehe So we'll see how this pans out in the scheme of things.

I am grateful for Carrie! Between us is a strong love and a strong sense that either of us would support the other 100% in what we want to achieve in life. That's a great thing to feel and to know.

I miss her and can't wait to hug her for a long time... it will be cold when she gets back here and I will hug her warm. :o)

God is very good to me. You know what else the Bible says? "'For I know the plans I have for you,' says the Lord. 'Plans to prosper you and not to harm you; to give you a future and a hope.'" THAT is AWESOME to know!

I am totally doing the Snoopy dance inside!! hehe...

Friday, November 28, 2008

So It’s My Birthday... I Hope I Have Fun...

Yeah, John Lennon... anyway... so today I woke up 33 years old. Lying in bed, I thought for a moment to see if I "felt" older. I concluded that I did not; I still feel the same as I did yesterday. Which I guess is good. Only difference I can sense it that... well I've always felt like people viewed me as a kid, even all the years I've now been an adult. And every birthday, I feel a sense of accomplishment... not a sense that people do NOT view me as a kid... but... that I care less and less every year. *grin* heh... So maybe I view my SELF as less of a kid.

Woke up this morning in Port Arthur, TX at Carrie's aunt and uncle's house where we ate Thanksgiving dinner yesterday. Beth and Kenny are very cool. Just a little younger than my parents; I don't know, my dad and Kenny might be the same age come to think of it. The two of them and Carrie are out in the garage smoking. I went out there awhile, while I drank my coffee, to be sociable and to be a decent guest. Came back in when I'd reached my tolerance level of cigarrette smell, ha...

I feel a bit introspective today and so I value some time alone, even though I am at someone else's house. This family makes me feel very comfortable and accepted; kind of a come-as-you-are theme around here, which is truly Christlike and very commendable. I am sitting alone on their sofa in their living room, using their laptop... it's all cool.

Carrie has promised me we can do whatever I want today since it's my birthday. I want to get back to Baton Rouge as soon as possible because I want to see my cousin Heather and her two men... husband Pete and little dude Tyler... who is SOOOO cute... but I haven't seen them in a long time and I want to get a chance to visit, if only for a little bit, before they head back to the tip of Florida. And I want them to meet Carrie. I want everyone to meet Carrie and proclaim, unspoken, "This is HER!! Isn't she great!!" Especially to those in my family I feel more sure will be receptive toward her. Heather is one of those. My buddy cousin from way, way back. She is 4 months older than me to the day. We grew up together, making up clubs and plays and dances and games and you name it... anyway it's important to me to see her today.

I know Carrie promised her grandmother last night that we would be by to visit her before we left town. Her grandmother is awesome. But I want to see my family as soon after that as possible.

So here's to being 33 and hopes for a good day!

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Late Night

Well here I am again, on the couch. And there is Carrie again, asleep to my right... we really don't do this every night. *grin* Nah, she's just been feeling bad... saw a doctor today, got some medicine too... consequently, she's down for the count. I woke her up a little, earlier, and said, "Baby, you wanna come to bed? You'll be more comfortable..." She just smiiiiiled and nodded and mumbled something... and she has not moved since. I just wanted to make sure she wasn't going to wake up sore from sleeping "all in a pretzel," as she has put it before. She is so beautiful. I love watching her sleep and love knowing her worn-out body is getting a chance to rest.

So here I stay, faithful, by her side... sweet, I know... You know, I'm a real catch! *grin* I am a CAUGHT catch and very happily so. Life is so good right now. I finally feel like things are falling into place the way they should. I mean just in my feelings... there are some details in my life that are not quite as they should be... like... needing a job and... owing all but my soul to way too many different debtors... but at least I feel like I'm in a good place and on the right track.

I have been applying and even interviewing like a mad banshee with no results yet... minus one temp-to-perm position I was offered without even an interview... but that was not at all right for me. Long story; just trust me on that one. Today I went around applying at lower-caliber places... as in, not offices, but stores and such. I applied at Tuesday Morning... I would LOVE to work there, get to see all the things they sell and get a discount... my small piece of heaven, heh... Only thing is, the very low rate of PAY... but something is more than nothing, so we'll see what comes of it.

I also applied at Pearson's Luggage and Gifts... one of those places where people with money buy things I would probably get at WalMart, heh... and I applied at a froo-froo grocery store... and at Chili's, where I am to return tomorrow and take a personality test. Waiting tables can bring in some money, if people tip right, especially during the holidays. So we shall see!

ALSO, I have an interview on Monday with a business office place. It would pay better, but be a lot less fun. I wish the fun jobs paid better. Wish in one hand... right? Yeah yeah. :o)

My dad's birthday is tomorrow. I believe he will be 52. Young dad, compared to the dads of a lot of people I know. I made his present earlier. He's going to like it. I just know he is. I feel all squirmy-excited like a little kid. Take a look:

He's "Daddy" to me but, now that Abel and Avery are around, he has become "Pa-Pa Kevin." Yep, there's my dad looking SO "That 70's Show"... and little me. Cute, yes, I know. *grin* That is a very realistic portrayal of him back in the day, though! He was all groovy and stuff. Sssssssolid, man. heh....

Sometimes I think it would be cool to sell South Park pictures of people, like at a fair or art show or something. It's a kind of caricature; a picture of them with South Park-shaped features... with the details reflecting something about their life or personality. I've done a bunch and all the people I've done them for have loved them.

I need to go to bed. Maybe I can get Carrie to accompany me if I try again. The way she's laying looks pretty uncomfortable... but she is sleeping very deeply. I love her with my whole heart. I know what I am thankful for this Thanksgiving. :o)

Monday, November 24, 2008

Knot in the Throat

Well whaddaya know, it was bound to happen, but I have been friend-requested by a long-ago ex. I should have expected it; she's come up in conversation a number of times in the last few days. Today Carrie and I went to Macaroni Grill after church and were talking about past experiences that were tough. So anyway... now I have a friend request. And I don't want to accept it... but I also don't want to refuse it; experience has shown me that is a good way to invite drama. I am in another state, almost 500 miles away, in a wonderful relationship with the most wonderful woman I have ever known. Ahh, life...

Carrie has an ex very much like the one I had. They had a similar relationship to the one I had with this girl; good and bad in many of the same ways. And so I understand when her ex is trying to contact her; the questioning whether to respond, or how... we each understand for the other.

I want to just leave it alone and move forward. Leave it alone and move forward. Leave it alone and move forward.

I think I know how to handle this. Hiding never made anything better; just even more dramatic.

My sweet, beautiful life partner is asleep to my right on this sofa in our little duplex. I thanked her earlier today because she makes me feel peaceful; I know I can trust her and that she will not hurt me. Thank you, God, for my Carrie. I am blessed.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Faith is Seldom Fun

I am, once again, between jobs. By no wrong of my own; my last two gigs have been temp assignments... the latter of which paid me less than a respectable wage, but was better than what I would have made otherwise in that time period, which would have been nothing. Long sentence. Anyway... just biding my time, filing my bills for someday, and avoiding collectors, which seems to be the story of most of my adult life.

Last week I had two interviews for state jobs which both would have been great... and I'm not saying I *didn't* get either of those jobs; I just haven't heard back from either, so far.

Tomorrow I have another state job interview... I like the idea of state jobs, because it's a pretty secure system to work in. Regularly scheduled reviews and percentage increases, lots of chances to advance or transfer, and insurance... I love insurance. I had insurance in 2007, for the first time in a long time, and I got some fillings and a nice root canal/crown job done. Insurance is nice.

I also have an interview next Tuesday with a very large company that supposedly really likes my resume and supposedly will pay me well... supposedly very well, though the definition of "very well" can vary from one person's perception to the next. It would be a contract job for 18 months through an agency, and then potentially permanent. Which would be sweet. But "contract" does not include insurance; however, if the "very well" level of pay is enough, perhaps I could get my own. Or maybe through the agency.

Here we have an example of Nicole writing just to write. I haven't in awhile and it helps... kind of a "mind-purging."

I'm at home with Carrie. I'm watching Criminal Minds with the occasional glance of my left eye... mostly listening... reclining caddy-cornered on the sofa with two little pillows behind me, legs folded up indian-style. Carrie is on her computer too, filling out forms online for school. Luna and Vladimir are playing... toussling around, you might say... it's cute. Luna needed somebody new to pal around with. The other 2 cats are old codgers who have no use for a dog; Vladimir is a frisky kitten who still has his "pair" and was not afraid of Luna from day one... I think it took Luna longer to get used to Vladimir than vice-versa, ha... but the two of them run around and chase each other, sometimes play with a toy together. It's cute. I know Luna misses having a dog to rough around with. She misses her old pal Lo... when I pet her head and talk about Lo, she looks all sad.

My next-door neighbor has a huge dog named Bruce. Bruce is part great dane and part... not sure, but he has a beautiful coat... he looks kind of like swirly ice cream. Here's a picture:

Anyway, he and Luna don't really groove together. They aren't at odds; just don't seem to have much interest in being friends.

I said faith is seldom fun because having to wait for an answer, even when you know deep down it's going to come, is often grueling... tiring... frustrating... sometimes depressing... etcetera. But SOMETHING has to break open SOME time soon... and it will. I just need to wait, trust, and do what I know.

Here's a crazy pic of my grrl a month or so ago when we were down in the French Quarter... she's awesome. Carrie is so good to me and I am grateful to have her in my life.

I love her, love her, love her. Carrie just makes life that much better. :o)

Hanging in there,


Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Ramble On...

I have been flooded with memories lately. Strong images like after I've awoken from an especially vivid dream. Weird.

People. Places. Times. Situations. Feelings.


Tonight, at a red light on the way here, I was washed over with the feeling I've had before of being alone in a strange place... perhaps travelling, maybe the feeling I've had when I've just moved into a new town. Driving, at night... all you see is lights... brake lights, tail lights, head lights, traffic lights... all very cold and distant... the feeling is of isolation with an undergirding of fear. There are people all around but you can see none of them. Not one person knows you or cares where you came from, where you're headed, if you will make it there okay... scary. I felt that when I was 23, driving in the middle of the night from Baton Rouge headed to Tulsa to visit a friend at Oral Roberts University. I got lost around Texarkana, where 49 and 20 and Shreveport all meet, intermingle, and confuse. Scary. I was crying.

But I made it. Obviously; it's about 10 years later now and here I am. Ironically, I know that conjugation of interstates and roads well enough now, having driven so many times between here and Dallas... went north on I-49 and turned left at Shreveport, getting onto I-20 after a connection or two.

I encountered that same feeling when I was new to the huge city of Dallas, Texas. It's a kind of take-your-breath-away knot in your stomach that actually provides a sort of rush for me. I crave that feeling. I guess I'm bored with my life lately. I crave that sense of newness, of feeling unsure and a little insecure but holding, at the same time, a shaky confidence.

I am so sick of living in Baton Rouge. Carrie and I have talked about moving to Austin one day. Of course, back in reality land, we can't just pick up and do that tomorrow... but as soon as she says she's ready, I'm going to race her to the car and win. hehe...

I don't even care... Atlanta... Chicago... I was thinking today of how much I would love to live in California. I would LOVE to live in California.

Dare to dream. I feel so pressed and cloistered by the demands of life. As I've blogged about before, it all seems to boil down to money. I need to save up. Pay stuff off. Always, always, I need a better job. My temp assignment right now pays me a whopping NINE DOLLARS AN HOUR... I console myself with the thought that my hourly rate become $13.50 once I pass the 40-hour mark. Which I do, by far, every week.

And this is just temporary; I work for a clean-up-after-several-hurricanes recovery group. Initially it was a month or three assignment. I'm looking for higher paying work behind the scenes anyway.

I'm rambling. I just have a lot to say and no one to say it to. I drank a beer, took a nap, and woke up with a lot on my mind. I'm now sitting on a padded bench at CC's on Burbank Ave. This is my favorite seat here. I'm at the right end of this long bench. To the left of me is a painted metal pole/column that contains power cords or somesuch nonsense... and then, past that, are other people. So no one is close to me. I actually feel old, often, in this CC's because it is so freaking full of LIKEs and OMIGODs and like... totally... undergrad college students in their early 20's.

I miss being in my early 20's. Life is a huge mystery awaiting you, and you're at the very beginning of the road of your life. I will turn 33 the day after Thanksgiving this year.

I could find a new way to feel about life in its current form. I suppose it's my decision, how I choose to perceive the world. (Do you know that every time I type the word "perceive" I pause and recite "i-before-e-except-after-c" in my head... just one of my quirks, heh...)

Being here tonight reminds me of living in Dallas, very close to Richardson and Addison. 5850 Belt Line Rd apt 706, my favorite place to live while I was in Texas and the only place I lived in Texas where Mandie never lived with me. Times were good. I was dating Gerri who lived an hour and a half north in Sanger and was also always working nights so I had plenty of time on my hands. Most evenings I would end up in one of several nearby Starbucks locations. It became my own kind of little retreat and niche of comfort.

Sometimes I feel like I talk too much. Carrie is so nice because she says she loves to hear me talk. The last person I dated told me often to stop talking; that she preferred silence. Preferring to hush than quabble over it, I hushed. Whatever. It's nice to be offered... verbal freedom... once more, though I do kind of feel like a freshly hatched little bird... exploring an environment I had been walled off from, and awkwardly learning what my legs are for.

I'm ending this now. If anyone reads it, hopefully you found it entertaining. Hasta manana, muchachas.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008


I have been having a back-and-forth dilemma over who will get my vote for President. I keep finding reasons to change my mind. While I won't go into those reasons, I feel that there are several valid reasons to vote for either candidate.

I WOULD, however, like to repost a piece of this article I found about Sarah Palin. I just wanted to scream when I read the closed-mindedness and ignorance of this comment she made. Take a look and form your own opinions. I will say this, though... I don't want this level of ignorance in the administration running the country I call home.

Here's part of this article from the Associated Press on Monday 10/20. I will hilight the phrase that boggles my mind and turns my stomach.


Palin breaks with McCain on gay marriage amendment

NEW YORK – Republican vice presidential nominee Sarah Palin says she supports a constitutional amendment banning gay marriage, a break with John McCain who has said he believes states should be left to define what marriage is. In an interview with Christian Broadcasting Network, the Alaska governor said she had voted in 1998 for a state amendment banning same sex marriage and hoped to see a federal ban on such unions.

"I have voted along with the vast majority of Alaskans who had the opportunity to vote to amend our Constitution defining marriage as between one man and one woman. I wish on a federal level that's where we would go. I don't support gay marriage," Palin said. She said she believed traditional marriage is the foundation for strong families.

McCain, an Arizona senator, is supporting a ballot initiative in his state this year that would ban gay marriage. But he has consistently and forcefully opposed a federal marriage amendment, saying it would usurp states' authority on such matters.

As governor, Palin vetoed a bill that would have denied benefits to the partners of gay state employees. In a debate with Democratic rival Joe Biden, Palin said she was "tolerant" of gays and said she supported certain legal protections for same-sex couples, like hospital visitation rights.


I don't know what planet this woman lives on but "traditional marriage" does not guarantee strong families any more than the "Just Say No" campaign guaranteed fewer kids would try drugs and alcohol. The strength of a family is based on the love and relationships within it... not on the gender of the people who make up the family.

Fuck Sarah Palin. I cannot see myself supporting a candidate or running mate with such a limit on his or her realm of ideas they will evaluate and possibly deem acceptable. This world is a big, diverse place. APPARENTLY, there are some people who want everyone to stand in a line and be made identical according to the standards pounded into THEM all their lives. Fortunately, that is not an option.

Yes, the closed-minded must continue to procreate within their own ranks. Maybe in time they will all be so inbred they will go extinct.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Gretna Heritage Festival

Carrie and I went to the Gretna Heritage Festival two weekends ago and had lots of fun plus a few daiquris. Here are a few shapshots of the fun and frolic-ful evening. I love my girl.

This is early on, and an amiable stranger offered to take our picture. Sweeeeet.

Some of the upscale scenery...

My babygurl lookin all cute...

We saw this chick play for a little while. She was awesome! Her name was Irene something. Maybe Sage?? Anyway that was a GREAT show.

Yeah, I'm pretty sure her name is Irene Sage. Carrie got her CD. Sweet.

A little blurry, but here's a shot of the scenery once it got dark:

We are just too cute...

...and sometimes very silly. Very cool. Very!

And, because it was just a few days before our 6 month landmark, we got these little rings. They were nothing fancy and very inexpensive, but just a cute little keepsake and a sweet symbol. I love, love this girl... damn!!

And we lived happily ever after. Life is good. Later!!

Saturday, October 11, 2008

leeeeeeeeeeave me aloooooooooooone...........

Things Wrong With My Life:

1. I forgot to pay a traffic ticket that was due last week.

2. There's a warrant out for me in another state because of a traffic ticket I never paid there... for a vehicle I was driving that was not even mine... and I got pulled over and ticketed because the inspection sticker was out of date. I forgot about the ticket because it wasn't even my vehicle... but now they're after my ass wanting close to $500 for an expired inspection sticker on a Ford Explorer that does not belong to me. I don't have that. Sorry...

3. I am behind in my car insurance

4. I have a job for the time being but it's just temporary and doesn't pay much.

5. I have a car payment coming up due in a week and a half and if I don't make it, that was my last chance with the finance company.

6. I feel like a failure in general and like the world is pressing down on my back.

7. I am so sick of being behind the 8 ball... never enough money, lately can't count on my current job being there the next day no matter how hard I work...

I don't want to die or anything; I just want to escape. Or to overcome... it's just so fucking frustrating. Never enough, never good enough. I mean fuck it. There was a time in my life when I responded to pressure by wanting to punish myself in some way. I'm not out to get me anymore. I just want to get away. I just want the pressures and stresses to get away from me.

I just need a load of money to fall from the sky. I'm sick of this fucking rat race. The largest problems in my life exist because numerous sources want money from me that I do not have to offer them. That's about it. Of course, they want money that I owe them for some reason or another, but the point is, I do not have it.

No comments on this blog. Just needed to get this off my chest. Though it's not really off my chest; I've just aired my fucking drama crap for the world wide web to read. Ta-dah.

Read more:

Thursday, October 2, 2008

The Story

Life is so full of stories... and pictures tell stories so well. Here are a few snapshots of life from Nicole's point of view. (heh... don't be afraid!)

When I was 17, I went with my youth group on a mission trip down to Huejutla, Mexico. 10 hours down into Mexico, in the mountains, is a place very different from here.

There were some utilities but they were very limited. Hence this picture of my friend and me washing clothes in cement sinks with "scrub boards" in the bottoms... probably like my grandmother did back in the Great Depression. Heh... and like we might be doing again here soon if the economy doesn't pick up! (kidding, kidding...)

The girls on the trip pretty much had to dress like Pentecostals... no makeup and long skirts. But we had fun. This is me singing "The Sound of Music"... yeah... the heat gets to ya.

Moving backward in time... back to the US, at the Centroplex in Baton Rouge... here is me with my Pa-Pa at my high school graduation. He looked so handsome, all decked out in his suit and tie. I always loved my Pa-Pa... I was his Coley. He was always very sweet to me. He died about a year later and a half after I graduated. I miss that old toot...

Going back even further... I'm not sure what year this was... but this was our dog Lady. She was a good ol' girl. Soft, long hair and shiny blue eyes. She was a sweetie.

This is my sister with Lady on my grandparents' frozen pond. It so seldom freezes down here in Louisiana... we had fun whenever it did.

I would like to note here that little Vladimir is asleep on my chest as I'm reclined on the couch writing this blog. Wish I could get a picture but if I so much as move to get a camera, he will run off and this sweet little moment we're having will be over. Awww. Sweet little Vladimir. Avery calls him, "Vaa-da-MEER-a!" *grin*

Long time ago, here's a shot of my brother Kevin... Avery's dad... riding his horse which we still have out in my grandmother's shed and which Avery himself likes to get on whenever he can! Cute, cute...

This is my brother Matt when he was born. hehe...

This is Danny Callihan in the 5th grade. I had a crush on him. Hehehe...

This is me in the middle with Kevin and Lisa, and our MamMa. I don't remember for sure when this was taken. Somewhere between third and fifth grade, I'm sure. MamMa was always really sweet to us too. Miss her...

This is on my grandparents' back porch. My Pa-Pa always had his feet propped up on that table... unless the table was holding a tray of coffee cups. That's Kevin and Lisa and, yes, a goat. How awesome is that. ..

This is my friend Kellie Johnson. She was my best friend in middle school. I don't think I've talked to her since middle school! It would be amazing to see all these random people again. Good times, good times. Anyway, this picture was taken on a trip to Washington D.C. we took in 7th grade. That was a great time.

We passed by this really big house on Pennsylvania Avenue...

...toured Arlington National Cemetary... soldiers' graves as far as you could see in every direction... makes you stop and think, and be thankful...

Meanwhile, back at the ranch... this is my Pa-Pa's dog. His name was Boogy. He lived back there with the goats and the pond. I'm sure he felt like he was the ruler of the goat yard. heh...

And this is my family, minus me, who took the picture. My mom was just a little older in this picture than I am now. I cannot imagine having 4 kids, heh... Man. They had no idea, when they were dating as teenagers, what would come in time! Wow. Crazy stuff.

This is Jeremy. My one boyfriend, heh... I dated him in 10th grade for a few months. This picture was a bit later, though. This was on a trip our youth group took to Phoenix, AZ. Bro. Rick Bezet (our youth pastor) had called Jeremy to his room saying he needed to speak to him very urgently. Jeremy got there and Bro. Rick had a couple guys throw a bucket of water on Jeremy when he opened the door. Great times, great times. *grin*

This is my brother Matthew. He used to always let me dress him up as all kind of stuff and take pictures. This was my re-creation of "Where's Waldo?".

So many pictures... I started out looking for one in particular, and now I have come upon it. Just got a little nostalgic in my search and wanted to share a few.

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Friday, September 26, 2008

Homage to Gustav

I've been meaning to post this blog for awhile but have had so much going on lately, I haven't gotten around to it. Hurricane Gustav came a few weeks ago, and here is my account of what went on. From my perspective, anyway. We didn't suffer too terribly, beyond being out of power for around a week... I know some were dealt a much more severe blow. This is what went down from OUR perspective. Gustav in the Tigerland Ghetto :o)

Well, Luna got all dressed up for the occasion...

Carrie invited her friend Mike to come evacuate and hang with us since he lives in Metairie and that's where the storm was SUPPOSED to hit the worst. Turns out, Mike's apartment complex never even lost power. heh... Anyway, he brought his friend Fred along with him.

We all went up to the levee to see what was going on in the river as the storm was coming in. The wind was blowing hard and it was raining like crazy!

So we went home and took showers and a nap. And when we woke up, the biggest blow of the storm had hit. Lots of water in our street and in streets in the area.

This is our neighbor Bruce. He's awesome. His dad's name is Rodney. He's okay too. :o)

A limb fell on the lines in the backyard... Mike and Rodney got it down later.

A little nest fell out of a tree and Carrie picked it up. She values the simple things in nature, even small birds' nests... just one more thing I love about her.

And through the entire storm, the barbecue pit stood firm. heh...

Of course we had bought important non-perishables to help us through the storm... So we bore through the days and nights and days of no A/C and far too many mosquitos. Sometimes I would go in the hot and stuffy back of the house and lay down to chill, and visit with the cats. And take pictures of my feet. heh...

Sometimes I would go on photo-journaling walks just to get out of the house, even in the rain. It rained and rained and rained...

Our house itself was fine, but lots of buildings around us had damage to the roofs.

And not one Port-A-Potty was left standing.

Businesses closed...

I love Carrie. We got along just smooth, smooth the whole time. That's a good sign for us. Some people would have gotten all stressed out and fought like cats and dogs. We were just like... cats.

Rocco, however, was driven to take up smoking...

When the power finally started coming on here and there around the city, we went to King's Buffet and got a good meal and... uh... we also both were kinda sick for awhile afterward. Um... heh...

Still, our power stayed off and finally we'd had enough. We packed up and took off for Texas, where some of Carrie's very awesome and kind relatives live. And so we made our way to Port Arthur, right across the state line. Stayed at an *AIR CONDITIONED* Ramada... with TV and everything, heh!! The weather was so beautiful, and I got to re-live the awesome feeling of existing under the vast Texas sky!

Got to meet Carrie's groovy uncle Kenny... and her equally-groovy aunt Beth... Rocco liked them too. We had a very enjoyable visit. And a very nice evening! When the, uh, room stopped sp-sp-spinning... hehe...

The next day, at Carrie's Grandma's, I saw Rocco on TV... and I liked the bathroom... because it reminded me of MY grandparents' bathroom... so of course Nicole had to take a picture of the bathroom. Ha.

Luna made friends with Grandma's neighbor's dog...

So a good time was had by all. Those 2 nights we spent there were a heavenly degree of refreshing and Carrie and I both credited that brief escape for the maintaining of a good percentage of our sanity. But on Saturday, we packed up and headed home, hopeful that our power would be on.

Yeah, Luna's great to travel with. She has the great "It's All Good" attitude. We had fun on the ride home, chillin' in the back seat.

But alas, despite our hopes, we came home to the same dark, hot and stuffy house we left. Pooh.

Yes, and it was hot...

But at least sweet little Vladimir took my mind off of it whenever I picked him up and held him awhile. My sweet little guy.

And the rain kept on coming...

So Carrie in all her awesome splendor scored for us a generator and a portable a/c. It was a definite degree of bliss. Luna thought so too. :o)

You know, Carrie lost her entire house underwater in 2005 with Katrina. She got a souvenir... a "Chocolate City" t-shirt... *elbow, elbow* hehe... Ahh, though, we had a nice evening on the sofa with the room somewhat cooled down.

The next day, we went out to the levee again, this time with Rocco, to get out of the house and get some fresh air.

THEN, the very next day...

We had restored to us power AND air conditioning. About 7 or 8 days without those things makes you a truly grateful little being.

Taz, however, was characteristically unimpressed.

And that... (drumroll)... was that.

I love my girl. She is wonderful in every way, even in less-than-accomodating circumstances. And her family kicks ASS.

So now all you funkadelicks can stop wondering if I was ever going to blog again. Fear not, I'm still here.

But now... I'm going to BED!! LATER!!!!!!!!

Friday, September 5, 2008


All I can say to this article I ran across is... "PUH-LEEEEZE!!" Whoever wrote this needs to go find something else to do. What I got from this article was a sense that the writer believed all lesbians were predatory, pussy-seeking vultures poised to prey upon unsuspecting, vulnerable, fragile straight women. I mean really. Go home. Just had to share this because of the ridiculosity and closed-mindedness on display in this article is mind-boggling to me.

Of course lesbians want to help battered women. Lesbians care about women.

**Side note: Carrie and I are in Texas in a Ramada, as our home is currently uninhabitable after the wrath of Gustav. More blogging with a storyline of pictures is soon to come.**

The article. Enjoy. Or respond and rip them a new one. heh...

Peace and fleas with wobbly knees...



Right Wing Alleges Women's Shelters Are Lesbian Predator Hotbeds
by Kilian Melloy
EDGE Contributor
Thursday Sep 4, 2008

A right-wing blogger claims that shelters for battered women not only originated with lesbian activists, but now serve as places where lesbians prey upon the vulnerable.

Carey Roberts, the author of a book linking Marxism and feminism (and, according to his bio at Renew America, where the story appeared, someone who is cited by Rush Limbaugh), claims that shelters for battered women are being used by lesbian predators as "happy hunting grounds" where unsuspecting women might be seduced or even recruited into lesbianism.

In his article, Roberts cites a four-year-old article that appeared in the newspaper The Oregonian, in which Bonnie Tinker, a lesbian community leader, said that women's shelters began with "a small group of lesbians from Portland who were at the forefront of a national movement to provide safe havens for women," and adds, "We knew that foundations were not going to fund a house for a bunch of homeless bar dykes."

The Tinker quote continues, "We realized the language that would be understood was the language of battered women."

Roberts reports in his article that a woman named Maria who turned to Falls Church, VA, shelter Bethany House was coerced by a male lawyer whose services were supposed to be free, but which turned out to have a price in terms of sexual favors.

Roberts also wrote that two managers for Bethany House resigned after accusations that they had made passes at women seeking shelter there.

Roberts also claims that in an unidentified shelter, a woman who had come with their children seeking refuge complained about sexual conduct taking place in the shelter, only to have her concerns dismissed by the manager; at the same unidentified shelter, Roberts wrote, a minor was being taken by an older lesbian into a closed room. When a worker at the shelter expressed concern, the same manager told the worker that she was being "prejudiced."

Roberts also claimed that the director of an organization called the West Virginia Coalition Against Domestic Violence came onto at least one woman who had begin to come to a support group's sessions. When the woman told the director that she was not interested, Roberts wrote, she was subsequently treated as a pariah.

Roberts reported on a woman who had been a resident at two shelters and who said that, "many workers in shelters are lesbians." One sure sign: when a shelter worker rubs the palm of a battered woman's hand. It's not just because the shelter worker is empathizing or offering soothing touch, implies the article.

Added the woman, "If you become her girlfriend, you will be treated very good."

The unidentified woman's evidence for the cl.. "I was 100% sure."

Roberts also cited an incident that allegedly took place in a Florida shelter, in which a nine-year-old and a five-year-old were discovered by a shelter worker as having been engaged in a sexual situation. Roberts cites the incident as a "digital rape."

The story on how women's shelters are a hotbed of lesbian seduction also included one account of a Houston shelter arranging for holiday parties in which residents and professional men from the area could mix; a pregnancy resulted in the wake of one such holiday mixer, Roberts wrote.

Roberts then cited an individual identified as Bobbi Bacha, "of Blue Moon Investigations," who expressed concern that such mixers might be a means of preparing shelter residents to become street walkers.

Writes Roberts near the end of the piece, "For the record, many women who work in abuse shelters believe same-sex marriages should be legalized, so who can fault these ladies for wanting to practice what they preach?"

Kilian Melloy reviews media, conducts interviews, and writes commentary for EDGEBoston, where he also serves as Assistant Arts Editor.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

The I-Don’t-Fucking-Care Day

I don't fucking care today. And while that sounds like a tongue-in-cheek reference to Dr. Seuss, I just really don't fucking care.

I do not want to go to work today. But I am going. Fuck it.

I missed 4 hours yesterday because of a Dr. appt. Fuck it. I will try and make those missing hours up the rest of this week but I am not going to stress over it. I never have enough money anyway.

I love my new kitten Vladimir. Even though he peed in my bed last night. I can hear my mother's voice, embedded in my mind, saying, "You shouldn't have gotten that cat. You're taking too much on. You need to give it away. It's too much."

I will always tell Avery and Abel they CAN, no matter what it is they want to do. And instead of telling them they can't and walking off, I will HELP as much as I can to do whatever it is they dream of doing. Those are not my own sons, but they are my little BOYZZ, and I give my heart to those sweet little boogers. They will rule the world if I have anything to do with it. So there.

I personally believe that lies at the root of a lot of my tendencies to self-doubt when trying to take on new things. I've always been told I can't or that I should be super-cautious. Fuck that. That's why I have tended to give up on new jobs too easily in the past; ooh this is too much; I can't take this on; I can't do this... and stress would compound on me, and I would give up.

I don't especially love my job right now, but I am going there today to earn my 8 hours, hopefully maybe one or two extra if I can summon that out of myself... and there's no promise that this will ever turn into a permanent job, but fuck it... I've found new jobs before, all my life. Mandie said I was the queen of finding new jobs. I wish I had something FUN to do for a job. Like if I could work in a coffee shop all the time. Might get hectic sometimes, but it would be people in and out all day; no computer screens or at least at a minimal level... I could sell my car if I got on at a store close enough and bike it to work... the lower pay would be compensated for by the lack of car note, lack of gas expenses, and lack of insurance. It would even out.

I'm so fucking sick of life. Not as in, I want to die... I'm just sick of this world and all the bullshit I trod through every day, playing the corporate/contract game... I'm going to be late today on purpose. Fuck it.

I spent about $22 yesterday on pet stuff. It was my choice. Granted, I had allotted myself $60 to live on for the week including gas, and I have driven already so much this week that the gas I filled up with on Saturday is down to about a quarter of a tank... but fuck it. Whatever. I have had a sign on the bulletin board at work for a month now, offering to pay half the gas if anyone passing by where I live would just slow down and let me jump in and sit in their car on the ride to and from work. No response. Whatever. Fuck it.

I don't even care. I hate where I've come from in life and I hate that, overall, my opinion of my life is that I have continuously failed or not been "enough"... but I keep going... I need to try a different tactic if I want a different outcome, right? Maybe it's time for something drastic.

I think this alt cert teaching thing would be such a drastic change... I really want to do this. I almost did it last year, but withdrew my application at the very last moment because so many people told me I couldn't or that I would hate it. Fuck that. I'm going to do it for myself and see. It might be just my niche. Someone I respect greatly has told me that teaching is a noble profession, her words exactly. I've watched her life go through several phases since I've known her and have viewed her as successful in each phase. Because she does not give up, and she gives it her all.

So, more people want money from me than I have money to give them, despite working 40 hour weeks at a fortune fucking 500 company. Ahh the sweet irony... like chewing iron itself. Fuck it all, man. I'm gonna go to work, do my assigned tasks, and do my own thing in the meantime. And fuck you to anyone who has a problem with that.

I am grateful for my friends and my emotional support, few and far between but all the more valuable because of that. Today I want to make a list of things I WANT to do, no matter their level of practicality, and set out to DO them. Fuck the rest of it. You only get one life; might as well be happy.

Anyway I still have a few minutes and I can leave for work and still be on time. So fuck you too. *grin*

Much love to my adoring public,

Nicole the Valiant

And a Partridge in a Pear Tree!!

I got a new widdle baby!! Yes, his name is Vladimir and he's, oh, somewhere around a month old. I adopted him from a lady who rescued him south of Houma. He is sooo little and new... and very playful and cute!

And of course I have pictures!

I love this little guy already. He rocks!! Cute little guy. He's kinda scared of the other pets so far but I'm keeping him comfy and safe-feeling... to kind of bridge him in, I guess. I've never done this before.

I can't wait to show him to Carrie!! She is so loving toward animals... she can even make friends with amphibians. She's awesome.

Saturday, August 23, 2008

Waiting for the Paint to Erode

...That's actually what I'm doing... waiting. I found this pretty decent-looking end table upside down out by the curb in someone's front yard along with their trash. Did a little favor to the parish trash peeps and picked that up for them. One of the legs was loose and there were a few scratches, a few swollen places on top that looked like water had stood there awhile. I had spotted the table on a walk with Luna. When I got home, Rocco was the one who went back with me and served as my accomplice in retrieving said artifact.

Got it home and inside where, once I tightened a screw underneath the table, the loose leg was el-fixo and voila, perfectly good table. Only now I'm stripping it to fix the facial malformities. (And yes, to the more than one of you who voiced concern last time I did a project like this, I am using newspaper this time.)

I will re-varnish this lil bebe and sell her on the black market AKA Craig's List. *grin* Nice lil source of pocket change.

Ever since then, when I drive around in my partially-ghetto neighborhood, I keep my eyes open. People have an unimaginable variety of junk out by the curb all the time. I enjoy fixing things up. I also enjoy making sales.

Rocco is out here with me on the front porch where I've been working. I told him this was great because Jesus worked with wood, too. He wasn't particularly interested in that topic of discussion, instead preferring to scream at people... or other birds... or... just nothing, possibly enjoying the sound of his voice echoing off Tiger Stadium in the distance, heh...

Guess I need to get back to work. It's time to try the scraper and see if things have loosened up enough to be cleared away. That's the nice thing about wood; you can paint it, stain it, scratch it, whatever... but a little effort is all it takes to completely redo the whole thing.

If it's too broken, you might just have to make it into something new, which is another opportunity for creativity. Or... if there's no other feasible option... you know... firewood... *GRIN*

Peace and fleas with knobby knees!

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

In the words of Bob Dylan...

Carrie was home for about 10 days about a week ago. It was wonderful having her here and I look forward to her soon return in a few weeks. I love that girl...

The moment she entered the house, she and Luna ran into each other's arms... shared lots of intimate secrets... totally blew me off and gave me the cold shoulder... but I'm smart, see, and soon things were back as they should always be.

Last Saturday evening, we went to the Hot Air Balloon Festival at Pennington. The whole evening was beautiful.

We got to watch them blow up many of the hot air balloons... that was really cool; I had never seen that before and didn't know how it was done. Very cool. And I mean, plus, the company I was with... ahhhhh...

As it turned darker out and the evening settled in, the balloons would all fire their propane burners from time to time and glow all at once. That was so, so pretty!

I love my beautiful Carrie Lynn... her very, very much... more than words alone could explain.

Then on Sunday, she grilled all kinds of vegetables and shrimp... DAMN!! I um... well I chopped up the veggies... but she handled all the cooking. Girl can do some DAMAGE with a few spices, a little bit of time and the right ingredients! Look at my sexy little senorita caliente on the grill... HOT DAY-UMM!!!

Love my girl. She's back in Pittsburgh now, but only for a week or two. I'm keeping the home fires burning... which basically entails keeping the animals fed and watered and um... looking after their various waste-elimination needs... ha... and she will be home soon, soon! This is a special love, different than any other I've had before. All I can say is, WOW.

Sunday, August 17, 2008

CC's Illustrated

She has the voice makes me think she might would rather be drunk

Or maybe is, often...

Loud, nasal, draaaaawn out... clanging and sharp like New Orleans

They talk about parking backward outside the apartment to keep from

banging the driver's side door of the car

on the post

She wants to bring Dante downstairs next weekend

but is afraid he will slip on the floor and get hurt

He is more rational; calm, someone I would rather be around

Patient with her; I guess he is used to her ways

"Let's go. It's too much money oalready," she says, gesturing with her


As I sketch the guy behind them

sitting in the corner

on his cell phone

I'm making him funny colors because he makes me feel funny...

When I first walked in, he

looked at me too long

so I shot him...

a dirty look. heh...

They're gone

I'm almost finished

Yet barely have I begun what I want to get done while I'm here

I had to reboot my computer so I

pulled out my colored pencils

and started creating my own world in the meantime.

The girls at the table behind me are


discussing life

and how she did it the long way

and how it sounds good.

College students.

"And I was, like..."

I wonder if I like people much at all sometimes

or if I just need to find something else to do

but they are everywhere


and we must co-exist

whether or not they

scrape my nerves

on this nice

Sunday afternoon

as I sit

and listen

and wonder.

Saturday, August 2, 2008

My Sweet Baby Luna

Something awful happened today. It was Avery's 3rd birthday party and everything was going great... then, out of nowhere, my brother's PITBULL attacked Luna. It was terrifying and horrible... one of those pieces of time that seems to move in slow motion with an echoing effect. Nilla had Luna by the head and would not let go... Luna was yelping and trying to fight back but was unable to escape. I started kicking at Nilla... my dad ran over and tried to tug her off of Luna... and my uncle, bless his heart, started swatting at Nilla with the colorful little toy stick Avery and Abel had just used to break open a pinata.

Finally Daddy got Nilla off of Lu, and I took her and left. Straight to the vet, good people, who know Luna by name and are always sweet to her... we got there about 30 minutes before their Saturday closing time and she went right in.

Basically the vet said her wounds were mostly superficial; meaning, nothing was gashed or punctured and no organs were hanging out... nothing was ripped open... I've heard of pitbulls tearing up the faces of other animals or even people... Luna has a tear in one ear, a little less intense gnawing was done on the other ear... she has cuts and bites on her legs and paws, and one of her elbows is very torn up. She is hobbling on 3 feet.

They gave her an injection of antibiotic and a prescription po bid for the next 10 days. They said it was best to leave the wounds open and let them heal naturally so they could drain... and it stinks... and I'm keeping Neosporin on her ears but when I put it anywhere else she just licks it off.

Carrie says I can give her a little acetominophen to help the pain and I will do that tomorrow.

My stomach is still all twisted up in knots from what went on today. I'm lying on the recliner in the living room... I made Luna a pallet with a blanket so she might not hurt quite as much but she - clumsily and miserably - hobbled into the bathroom earlier to lie on the floor where I was rather than be stuck in the other end of the house from me all night... but I don't know if I can stay in here because I smell her wounds and it's making me feel a little sick. We'll see.

I took pictures. They're gross and disgusting but I have to share them as medical documentation of what happened to my dog. I am so spun out over this whole thing. I cried on the phone to Carrie earlier, upset that Luna is SO hurt and there is nothing I can do to fix it.

Luna's ear was torn a little. And the tops of her front legs and her chest. Her front left leg. Her paw. And the underside of her elbow.

I am disgusted, horrified, and very upset. Mostly I hate that my dog is hurt. I prayed over her this evening and asked God to heal her with significant, noticeable improvements when I check on her in the morning.

Poor thing. I had to carry her down the steps from the front porch so she could go potty before bedtime. She is lethargic and miserable and did not eat at all today. I need to call the vet back on Monday if she still is refusing food.

My sweet baby girl. We will not be visiting Nilla again, ever. They used to play together and just be the best of pals... but I'd heard before that sometimes the sweetest pitbull will sometimes just snap. Fuck that. I'm going to take very good care of my puppydog and we will go play with respectable dogs at dog park when she gets better, if she needs some playmates.

This was her earlier... now she's lying on a folded, soft blanket and I hope she gets good rest. My sweet Miss Lu.

Friday, August 1, 2008

Basketballs Don’t Bounce Well in Puddles

Fuck the world and all its rules, all its protocol

as I stride down the street in the light rain

bounce, bounce, bounce, catch



bounce, bounce, bounce...

raindrops adorn my shirt

through the grass and the

bottom inch or so of my jeans legs gets





bounce, catch

hand, backboard, puddle


just because I care

don't get mad

I fucking care


drops in my eyes

on my cheeks


bounce, bounce


bounce... swishhhhhhhhh...

brush the hair off my


shirt now


pants legs





splash, catch


I'd sweat but who could tell

cry but who could distinguish

so I don't

fuck it

raindrops open my soul

I will grow muscles

then nothing will scare me




fuck it all

I'm wet

so fuck you too.

Sunday, July 27, 2008

Little D and Me

Sweet thing... Little D is lying to my right on this bed. Might not sound like such a big deal, but I feel emotion over it. She came to lie there last night while I was lying in bed sniffling. In the dark, I thought it was Taz at first... but when I reached over to touch this anonymous feline friend, I discovered it was D.

She has warmed up to me a lot more just in this past week. When I first met Little D, she was very skiddish and jumpy. Now she will lie still and let me pet her as long as I am willing, and will even roll over so I can pet her tummy. Sweet lil girl... we just needed some time to learn each other.

We both had sniffly noses last night and were making the same sounds with our breathing. It was cute; made me smile. I hear her rignt now, breathing through her little stuffy nose, oblivious to the world and to Rocco's morning ruckus in the other room.

And... we have now reclaimed the top portion of this bed as a GIRLS ONLY area, ha! I don't think Taz cares a bit, though, as he is in deep slumber near the foot of the bed on Little D's side.

Love me some Little D.

Saturday, July 26, 2008

Lillies and Livers

Just sitting here pondering a few things about life... how "yellow-bellied" implies that someone is a fraidy cat, but Rocco's whole underbelly is a bright yellow and he is neither fearful nor is he a feline... he's not even a chicken; he's a parrot...

I'm wondering where the term "Lilly-Livered" came from and how that particular word combination came to convey the idea implying that one lacks courage.

You know, there are two sides to every coin.

I've been reading some this morning and I love how so many authors can say so many words but leave you with the final task of assigning meaning to those words... interpreting... discovering what she was talking about in what she said but did not actually say. Encrypted, encoded, undercover conversations that are only one-quarter had... because only one of the two involved parties is talking and is only saying half of what she means.

Maybe I can learn to do that someday.

Saturday, July 19, 2008

A Kitten Named Elbow

You think I'm crazy... but that's what I was thinking as I went to sleep... if I ever got a new kitten, I would name him or her Elbow. I thought it was the perfect name because it's unusual and totally not gender-specific. haha

Went for a massage last night. I had a gift card for an hour session that I got for Christmas. Because of some confusion with the scheduling, they gave me a 90 minute massage session at no extra charge. Sweet.

Before the massage, I treated myself to Greek and Lebanese food. Chicken Shwarma... mmmm... mighta spelled that incorrectly but you know the dish. If you don't, you need to try it.

Got home, fell asleep on the couch watching Comedy Central and went to the bedroom finally around 2:30 a.m. I could not get back to sleep until 4:30... and then Mr. Rocco decided it was up-and-at-'em time around 6:30 this morning. I finally got up around 7. I told him I was going to cook Rocco Shwarma and serve him with hummus and rice. He was not impressed.

Stayed up awhile, talked to Carrie on the phone, fuddlemucked around and finally fell back asleep... don't know exactly what time that happened... but it was a good and restful sleep. My computer was in the living room... maybe Rocco thought to Google "Shwarma" and, upon learning its definition, thought it best he let me sleep a few hours, heh...

Crazy dreams in the interim... toward the end of my sleep, I dreamed my sister wanted to buy a small house in Texas. There was some sort of urgency going on with my family... some sort of crisis atmosphere... anyway she would not tell me WHY she wanted to buy in Texas or who she was planning to bring there with her... possibly my brother and his kids?? So I agreed to help her look and stumbled upon a title company I used to work for. We went in there to see if they knew of any small homes for sale... my sister would not give any details of what she wanted... number of rooms, size of the carport, nothing at all... she was just like, "I don't care. I don't CARE! I just want a house."

Leaving the title company, I saw a sign hanging in the hallway that said, "This month's special: 4 closings in 8 hours!"

I asked the escrow officer, "Are you serious? You're only going to do 4 closings a day??" She said that was true. I was amazed, and said, "I almost want to come back and work here again if that's all you're going to insist on!" (We used to do 12+ closings a day, especially at month-end... one closer, two escrow assistants... it was crazy, and I was living with psycho bipolar then-gf who would get very angry at me when I had to work late... so pressure from both sides... it sucked, let's just say...) 4 a day sounded like heaven. I could have actually gotten all my work done under those conditions... correctly, and completely... with no carryover to the next day. Wouldn't that have been nice.

If the housing market ever picks back up, I might consider going back into escrow. There's money to be made there, but it is stressful work. Or course, money and stress seem to be inseparable in the American work world... you can have an easy job... or you can make money.

I miss Carrie. She told me yesterday there was a hangup discovered in the insurance money she's waiting on and that it will be more than two weeks now, at least, before she has the funds in-hand and is able to come home. I'm coping. Every now and then I break down and cry... usually during a phone conversation with her... but I'm not acting; I literally cannot help crying. I know she doesn't want to be up there any longer than she has to, but there's just such a feeling of unfairness I'm getting about all this. In the most simplistic thinking, it boils down to: "She loves me... then why is she not HERE??" But she can't help it any more than I can.

For awhile I was stressed over caring for all the pets, but that's no longer an issue. The pets and I have homogenized into one lil family, now that I have dethroned Rocco as the self-appointed Alpha of the group. All is well in our home... minus one hugely important factor. I'm scared we will grow apart. This is such a long, long separation. I do know that I tend to stress too much and I need to stop. What I think over and over is what will become truth to me, so I'm learning. I need to think positively and not let my mind get off into drama-land.

Money is always an issue... plus I took off a good bit this past week. My goal for next week is a full 40 hours, no ifs ands or buts. I am captaining this ship, as it stands, and I need to stand up and be a good leader.

I also need more time with human friends. This blog has also been very cathartic for me. Anyone wanna come visit for a weekend? I have a sofa... actually I have a large, very comfortable air mattress... company would be welcomed and we would go out and find so many fun things to do. It's a standing invitation.

UNTIL Carrie returns... then neither of us will be seen for at least 4 or 5 consecutive days and nights, hehehe.... though you might HEAR a few things... *GRIN* OHHHH I miss my baby!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I'm off to find something interesting to do on this very hot Saturday. There has to be something. Maybe I'll take Luna over to the new dog park at BR city park. Maybe I'll go over there without her first and see what's on display in the art gallery... inspiration is good for the soul.

Cha cha cha! Bonjour et au revois! Hola y hasta esta noche. Auf Wiedersehen, meine Freunde.

Friday, July 18, 2008


There is enough in this world to worry about

without looking for more things to be concerned over.

There are enough problems in life

without trying to make a collection and corner the market on woes.

There is enough love in this world

to get me through.

There are enough good people out there

to not have to keep an eye out for wrongdoers.

There are plenty of liars and deceivers in this world

so there's no need to scrutinize honest people.

There is enough truth in the hearts and lives of people

to completely overshadow falsehood.

There is enough hope and healing in God

to wash away all the disappointments and abuse from the past.

There are enough opportunities for new experiences

so that we need not forever rehearse our yesterdays.

There is enough - already said, done and over with.

I will face forward and focus on the future.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Anything is Possible

I got the greatest breakthrough in my thinking this evening! I've been reading a great book a friend had recommended to me. What I "learned" was not directly written in the book; I gained the understanding while I was thinking about one of the concepts the book presented.

ANYTHING is possible. You do it by breaking it down into tiny steps; as small as you need. You pace yourself and focus only on each small step, each small piece of what you want to accomplish. Bit by bit, cumulatively, you can accomplish or overcome anything. You take the huge stuff, and make it a bunch of tiny stuff.

Things that look like mountains can be conquered one pebble at a time if necessary. I would love to earn my master's degree in social work but have always found the entire goal overwhelming. I've always thought there were just too many preliminaries to get to the point where I actually started classes or, even further out, was handed the degree. But it is not impossible! And now, having admitted that, I'm running out of excuses for not taking steps toward getting started.

I miss Carrie. I cannot bring her back instantly; I have to be patient and wait. But I can wait one day at a time, one half a day at a time, or even one hour at a time if it got that bad. That may sound a little ridiculous, but I'm just trying to make a point.

If someone were trying to break a habit... don't look at it as breaking the entire habit; look at it as, I can avoid this behavior (or whatever) for the next hour. Then take on the next hour, and so on.

I am excited and very encouraged. This opens up a wealth of opportunities; there are no more walls. My theme/key phrase lately is, "Focus on the POTENTIAL, not the limitations!" THIS concept, however, throws a whole new spin on that line of thinking.

Life is good. And it can get as much better as I want it to. SWEET.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008


It is hard with her gone

Hard to be alone

Hard doing this on my own

I wrote a long blog about how much I miss Carrie and how tough it has been for us both lately, but myspace had a technical error and ate it.

Que serah serah.