Friday, December 31, 2010


Last year, with Unravelling, I set a word for the intention with which to live. For 2010 it was "visibility"...both to be seen & to see clearly. I think I accomplished this in some ways, if not exactly in the ways I anticipated.

I de-lurked on most of the blogs I rely on daily to get me through the 9-5 grind by commenting regularly. I Facebook "friended" many online folks (mostly from aforementioned Unravelling) and got to know them better & let them alittle closer into my world. I added more contacts on Flickr & joined in on a few online groups/classes. Plus I tried to be more real & consistent on this blog, even though I question often why I have this silly thing. As for the seeing clearly part...well there was definitely some of that, although nothing that was knock-you-over-the-head EUREKA! kinda stuff, but good nuggets that helped me climb up a bit. I hope to continue letting visibility guide me into another year as well.

But with a new year comes a new view...a new mission, if you will. This year my intention, my word, is PROSPERITY...yes, in big capital letters please!

*Prosperity: a successful, thriving or flourishing condition. (ahhhh, it just makes me feel full when I read that)

I think often times we associate prosperity with financial success. And that is definitely part of my intention (throw me a bone here too Universe). I am choosing this word for more encompassing reasons. I also want to draw prosperity into my life for health, heart & my pending pursuits. I want to put my chronic fatigue behind me. I want to heal my heart-wounds & approach life more wholeheartedly. I want to dive head first into starting my dog training business & kick up some dust with my art & writing, so I can escape the cube once & for all. I want to set fear aside, so I can thrive, succeed & flourish for a change.

I'm staring down the barrel at 40 this July. The thing is, I'm not freaking out or ashamed or dreading it at all because I can feel that thing I've heard so many before me say...that this stage in life brings you to who you're meant to be. I've felt it brewing already and I can feel in my bones every step I take these days...the growing pains have already started, but they're good, like soreness after a really good workout. I have been living at 75% for too many years now & it's definitely time to prosper!


Thursday, December 30, 2010

let's get this party started

OK, enough holiday blues...enough CFS pity party...enough talking & more doing. I've been off sugar for a few days now which no doubt is helping me feel inspired & ready to bust a move.

Tis the eve of the eve of the New Year...2011 baby, she's a-comin'! I'm working on my goals list, my intention word...dreaming big yet in realistic ways since it's been brought to my attention recently that I tend towards too high of expectations. I mean there's nothing wrong with reaching for the stars. But sometimes I think for me, I reach for too many, too high, too often so as to set myself up for impossible expectations & probable disappointments.

That being said, my yearly goals list has always been more about putting it down than cracking the whip to make sure they all get done. In fact, of all the things I can beat myself up about, going through my previous year's list & noting which were done & not done doesn't cause me the least bit of strife or self-criticism. Not sure why, but I guess I'm one of those gals who feels that you've got to name it to claim it...put it out there to get it back.

For instance, there were several things on my 2010 to-do list that even as of Nov 1, I didn't think I'd make happen, but within the remaining weeks of the year I sure as shit did. Take #6 "start novel in earnest" and #12 "add to Fiestaware"--two totally different levels of to-dos. I had kinda written those off, but the opportunity belatedly presented itself to me on both counts, so I said "let's cross those bitches off."
And with that, I'm ready to cross some new things off in the new year. I'm still working on the what's...but I'll be back to post them & other random ramblings in the next couple of days.


Monday, December 27, 2010

an ode to CFS

Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS) doesn't sound very serious and it's not life-threatening (unless you consider that some resort to suicide vs living any longer in the state CFS brings). It's not the same for everyone, and it can't be tested for. It's a condition diagnosed after everything else is ruled out. Most people don't understand it or they mock it or they flippantly say things like "tell me about it, I'm tired too." Hell, I don't fully understand it even though I've been living with it for 3 years now. I have fought the fact that I even have it (figuring it's GOT to be something else), until I started reading others' stories about it & realized I was indeed in THAT boat.

You look fine--there's no obvious signs of disease or distress or markings or red flags. It is a thief, dressed in black, moving stealthly, unnoticed by the outside world. Not only does it steal your physical energy, it steals your mind's energy, your motivation, your joy, your zest, your comfort, your rest. It's often misdiagnosed as depression for this reason, but any depression is a side-effect, not a cause. Some people can't get out of bed. I get out of bed most days around 4am, I go to work, I come home to the couch, I lie in the tub, I get back into bed around 8pm because I can't stand to be up any longer. And in between these auto-pilot movements & foggy thinking, I dream of so many things that I want to do, but with my gumption & motivation & zeal stolen, nothing but the basics get done.

There are days of energy, days of doing. But I've learned they are mirages; they don't last...sometimes not even for a whole day. I grab hold of these when I can, do things that have been wanting to get done, and sometimes let myself feel hopeful that I'm fixed. But invariably the hour comes...I don't know when it'll be. Sometimes it's 8am, sometimes not til 10am or just after noon, but it comes. The light disappears, the motivation vanishes, and I'm back on the couch maxed out, a fog of non-doing now filling up my head. This is the cycle CFS takes in my life--in my heart I want to go & do & be out & be seen & get heard & be happy, but my body/energy/head can't be bothered with such things. It just wants to be still, be quiet & hide. I don't sleep, mind you, it's not that kind of tired for me. I lie around, concious but unable. Like I'm trapped in a bubble filled with a haze--I can sorta see out, but I cannot get out.

I am hopeful I can break the cycle. I am hopeful I can bust through the fog & reclaim who I used to be. But it's hard when you slide back & forth; daring to hope is a vulnerable place to be, especially when disappointment is never too far behind. But I keep trying--new doctors & alternative practitioners, new treatments, new food plans, tactics, mindsets, books, therapies, theories, support & attempts. It's all I can do, here alone in this fog-filled bubble, on my couch of hope.


blue christmas

OK, I think it's offical...I'm having a blue Christmas. I'm sure it's mostly because I was hormonal the week leading to Christmas, of all weeks. Might also be because I've been nursing a bum foot (it's not serious, but it does hurt & makes walking annoying). Or could be because I opted not to pull out the small smattering of decorations I have to put up a tree.

Basically it's just that time of the year...seeing everyone else be cheery & bright & together & merry really does make this the loneliest time of year...for someone like me who doesn't do the whole family gathering or have the funds to buy everyone gifts or (and this is probably the biggest part) have a partner to spend it with. I tried to start a tradition a few years ago of being away from home on a personal vacation during Christmas, but as finances have dried up, that wasn't in the budget again this year.

Whatever the cause this year, it's definitely catching up with me as Christmas has come & gone and now we eek toward the the end of the year. I didn't make as much use out my 4 days off, home alone, this past weekend as I'd intended. I did alittle art, but mostly ALOT of TV watching. (seriously why is it easier to clear out the DVR rather than the stack of books left unread? I mean, both can be done from the couch!?) Alot of that has to do with being in a downslide with the CFS...still experiencing 2 steps forward, 1 step back.

I'm blaming it on the poor food choices I've been making (since Thanksgiving really--mostly to numb I'm sure as the weight of the season snuck up on me). I'm not sure when I'll learn that eating for comfort is the most uncomfortable choice with my just causes the fatigue & the mental exhaustion & the irritability & the body aches & the hopelessness to flare up each & every time. But thankfully THAT is something I can change & so I shall (and will keep doing until it sticks). I would like to be kind to myself in this final week of 2010, so that I can start another year in a better place & make better things happen.


Monday, December 20, 2010

making messes

This is the cluttered area I call my art studio. I've been in it alot more lately. I promise, somewhere in there, art is being made! :) It feels good. Will post pics as I complete things.


Tuesday, December 14, 2010

quiet time

I've been quiet here, partly because I don't have alot to share & I partly because I'm in head-mode. Tis the time of year when I reflect & project. I'm dreaming up my Goals 2011 list--things I would like to accomplish or attempt over the course of the year. As such, I'm not attempting or accomplishing too much at the moment.

Also, I have started to have a backslide into low-energy again, which makes doing things or wanting to do things less appealing. I'm not sure what the deal is other than I was taking some additional supplements a couple of months back which ran out several weeks ago & maybe they were the culprits that had me feeling so much better here recently. Also my food choices have been shitty over the last couple of weeks too, so I'm sure that's not helping. I guess just as well on timing for lying low & projecting forward. Just hope I can get back on an upswing so I have the energy to follow through on my projections.

Another thing I've been feeling coming over me is a familiar paralysis as I near a transition in my dog training studies. I have 1 more book section to complete & then I will start on the hands-on portions. First will be my shelter volunteer work & then my mentor work & then my final certification. Creeping up is that old familiar feeling of "uh comes the real test...will I have what it takes...what if I don't..what if I can't make it work...what if I'm a shitty trainer...what if I can't find clients...what if I FAIL" fear that makes me want to abandon things before I have a chance to fail (or succeed) and instead go off in search of something else to attempt (insert art, writing, photography, etc, etc, infinity). It's a bad habit & a real concern...must nip it in the bud & make friends with the fears in order to push through anyway.

So that's kinda where I am...neither here nor there, I guess.


Saturday, December 4, 2010


Hope is the thing with feathers
That perches in the soul
And sings the tune without the words
And never stops at all. ~ Emily Dickinson
taken by my UK BF Alan during their unusually early winter
I've been Add Imagethinking alot about hope lately...what it is, what it means, where the line occurs between blind faith & plain ol' blindness. I do not have the answer really, but I know I carry specific hopes inside me every day...namely for a love I haven't seen in over 1000 days.

Funnily enough, I got the above Emily Dickinson quote while watching Criminal Minds (they have the BEST quotes on that show). It was an older episode about a mother whose son had been kidnapped 8 years prior. She devoted every day of those 8 years to trying to find him & in the process she lost the rest of her family, bits of her own sanity, and the respect of everyone around her because she believed in something that no one else could (finding her child alive after so much time). Of course, in the end (and because it's Hollywood), she was the hero who helped find other missing childrens because she never gave up.

I often feel alittle bit like that mother--believing in something no one else can, trusting something that no one can see, hoping for something that appears, to others, as hopelessly out of reach. Much like the spiderweb above...something so fragile and often easily overlooked or swept away becomes strong and beautiful under extreme circumstances...I feel like hope is this way too.

I guess I am making peace with this hope--I am not crazy, I am not naive, I am not desperate. I am simply in love & I believe in something that is beyond my comprehension but is securely in my heart, growing stronger & more beautiful with the extreme circumstances of passing time...and apparently I'm way more patient than I ever knew I could be.


Tuesday, November 30, 2010

holga in the hizzy

I FINALLY got 3 rolls of film processed from my Holga which I got about a year ago. I have a little bit of experimenting yet to do, but I'm pretty pleased with how the shots turned out--and extra pleased to remember some of the things I shot over the course of a year.

I'll look forward to shooting even more, and hopefully I will get them processed more quickly each time. I have to send them to Precision Camera in Austin (supporting my hometown peeps), and while they have reasonable prices for processing & scanning, it's still a bit of a cost to consider, but such is the way with film. And speaking of looking forward, I'm already thinking about my 2011 goals list...granted 2010 isn't yet complete, but it is trickling away rather quickly. I'm trying to stay present while looking ahead.

Today is the final day of NaNoWriMo & while I didn't hit the 50,000 word mark, I did accumulate 20,000+ words to a novel that I look forward to completing in 2011. Hopefully some time away from it will provide the needed extra inspiration that I'm currently lacking.

Despite having the sniffles, this past weekend I did sit down to make some art. It felt good to get my hands all painty & sticky & my mind churning with visual creativity which is much different than the churning of writing's creativity, so I'll look forward to doing more art making as well in the coming month & into next year.

So onward & upward...was fun to dive into photography alittle more this past year & I'm eager to dive into much more of everything going forward.

Monday, November 22, 2010

burned out

NaNoWriMo has got me by the balls. I have hit a serious & very high & thick wall. I reached 20K words, but no more are coming. I'm lacking inspiration. I'm lacking direction. I'm distracted (see previous post about George, plus I've had a majorly huge dog training test looming over me).

I'm just stuck, which has me feeling totally (and unnecessarily) stressed out. Bottom line: I don't think I'm going to hit my 50K by end of the month & that totally sucks because I feel, just by saying that, I've officially given up. I mean, there's just NO WAY I'm going to whip out 30,000 words over the next 7 days...just NO BLOODY WAY. And I'm accepting that...slowly but surely.

I mean 20,000 words is still more than I've EVER written in my entire life...well not entire, collective life (which makes me wonder--how many words collectively have I written during my 39.5 years on earth? but that's another post), but it IS the most I've written for a particular writing assignment. So I guess I should be proud of that--and I am. And the novel isn't dead--I still want to see it through--it's just obviously not going to be born via NaNoWriMo 2010!

I'm definitely bummed & feeling uber defeated. But you know what? I don't feel stressed out anymore & that's a nice little weight off my shoulders!


Friday, November 19, 2010

lost & found

My dog Eadie & I found this little guy on our walk after work yeterday. He was friendly as can be, had a collar, but no tags. He & Eadie got along great (which is unusual considering Eadie's not much of a dog's dog), and he gladly followed us home.

I'm trying to find his people (sent out an alert via my neighborhood Yahoo newsgroup, posted on, will take to the vet this afternoon to see if he's micro-chipped & will hang flyers around the hood this weekend) because if this were my sweet girl, I would want someone to do all the things I'm doing to reunite us. But I have to admit, he's already stealing my heart. I named him George--bad idea, I know, but he's just so dern cute & rather good. So I know he must be someone's pooch, I just worry given his condition that he's either not been as well cared for as I believe a dog should be or he's been roaming on his own for some time now.

I've never seen him anywhere in my neighborhood--and I spend alot of time out walking my dog or taking pictures--I've never seen him in a yard or being walked by someone or anything. A neighbor said she'd seen him earlier yesterday morning, so it's not like he'd just been out for a few minutes last night before we found him--he'd been wandering & no telling for how long.

Poor thing is itchy & dirty & stinky--but so so sweet. I've since learned Westies are prone to skin infections--he definitley has something more than just "the elements" irritating him. So when I go for the micro-chip, I'll get the vet to take a look and give me some tips on addressing it. It's one of those things that you don't want to go overboard & spend tons of money on a dog that you may have to turn back over tomorrow (and it's easy to spend too much at the vet on any given day), but he's uncomfortable, so I've atleast gotta help him with that. (was a restless night sleep last night, let me tell you). I'll figure out the rest as we go.

I will continue to try to find his peeps...and hope that if I do, they deserve to get him back.

PS: the NaNo writing hasn't been going well this week (i.e. aside from Monday, it's not been going at all unfortunately), BUT the weekend is upon me & I have high hopes I can crank alot out this weekend--I only need 17K to get caught you know, no pressure or anything (especially when I'll have this cutie patootie running around being ahh-dorable!)

Sunday, November 14, 2010

plugging along

Haven't written here much since starting NaNoWriMo...because I'm writing over there. I'm still behind my daily/weekly word count goals, but I AM WRITING and that's good enough for me at this point. I had hoped to atleast break 20K by this weekend's end (even though that's still about 5K behind where I should be to hit the 50K mark by month's end). And while I'm only 2,000 words away from my less-than goal this weekend, I think I'm tapped out & need to alittle nothing time before the work week starts all over again.

I did pick up some speed this past week, so I hope I can piggy back off of that this coming week, and finish a bit stronger by the end of next weekend. The story is unfolding nicely, some snags here & there as to how I thought it was going to go (and I'm pretty sure I need to completely re-do my beginning).

And I really have no concrete idea where I'm going from page to page, but I'm finding that the story is letting itself be told without too much manipulation on my part (well you know except for the typing & retyping). I'm finding each scene just sort of leads to the next scene, and the characters I created appear when they need to & some new ones pop up out of nowhere.

I am having more fun with it too (meeting my characters is the part I get most chuffed about), plus I'm getting better at not back-editing each time I sit down. I keep reminding myself "yes it is crap, who cares, just get the ideas & the words down." I will confess, I am an obsessive "recount" hitter in Word--it's both motivating and distracting, so I will work on not hitting that button with every pause I take. Otherwise, full steam ahead...


Monday, November 8, 2010


It may sound obvious, but this novel thing is H-A-R-D! I mean, I knew it would be, but I guess unless you've done it before, you don't know the exact ways it will prove toughest.

For me, I think it's proving tricky in the following ways:
  • I'm doing too much rewrite as I write (for every 2 words I write, I feel like I rewrite them each 4 times--time waster!)
  • I'm not totally sure how solid my story is (and I find myself distracted in research in the middle of a paragraph--time destroyer!)
  • And probably because of the lack of solidity, I'm having trouble understanding my characters (although I did just discover an unplanned character & I'm quite smitten with him, but it's making rethink the first 2K words & one of the main characters that lives in them...and who is sort of the catalyst for my main character's decisions--time annihilator!)

My goal by Sunday eve was 12,500 words...I have less than 1/2 of that at barely over 5K. Listen closely--can you hear it--my tears of defeat dripping down onto the keyboard? Yeah I can't hear it either because I'm not crying, but I am pissed because I spent ALOT of time writing this weekend, and yet, I have very little to show for it. On the page anyway. I guess the biggest part is the learning & hopefully that will show up on the page as I continue.

Because I'm not going to let my word count set back defeat me. I'm not going to say "well I'm already behind & there's no way I can catch up, so I might as well not even bother with the other 45,000 words," even though I'm not gonna lie, I've thought it. I'm just going to buckle down, aim for daily writing (instead of saving so much up for the weekend like I thought was a good idea last weekend), learn from my mistakes, and hope that the more I write, the more I will write!


Thursday, November 4, 2010


By day 3 of NaNo (yesterday), I was feeling stressed...okay, I was actually feeling stressed the Sunday night before NaNo officially started...but on day 3, I had only 800 words swirling inside a clumsy opening scene. Needless to say, I was feeling frustrated & DE-flated...who am I to try to write a novel when I haven't even tried writing many short stories. Pounding out a couple thousand words for a short story is tricky enough, but crafting an entire novel...making 50,000 words come together in a way that creates interest & also makes sense, with only 7 days preparation? Yeah, it wasn't looking good for me.

FYI: 50,000 words in 30 days = approximately 1,667 words per day or 12,500 words per week.

I was watching other NaNo writers hit their daily word counts, feeling myself getting further & further behind as I massaged the same 800 words over & over & over. I have to give myself some credit--from the get-go I completely intended to get most of my word count in at the weekends & wasn't going to freak myself out with needing to produce 1,667 words every-single-day (especially when I sit in a cube for 8 hrs of those weekdays). But these 800 words were taunting me & the the more I hoped they'd turn into something that would work, the more they simply refused to play nice. Actually the words were fine (some even good). It was the scene itself that was refusing to be my friend. Bottom line--what I was trying to make into the opening scene, was not in fact the opening scene.

Just as I was having thoughts of throwing in the towel, I had a mini break-thru yesterday at work...yeah, yeah, I know, shhh, don't tell them, okay?! I scribbled the ideas down as they kinda flooded me, cramming as much messy handwriting as I could into my handy dandy pocket novel notebook. I "outlined" the first scene, and then the next 2 scenes, during this break-thru. Nothing flowery, mind you, just basic thoughts "she leaves here...she meets him there...she's nervous, she has a secret...he's nervous, he too has a secret..." that I would use as my guide when I could actualy sit down at the computer later that night from home and flesh it out all literary like!

And by golly it worked. I hammered out 1,200 new words with relative ease last night...granted, they're rough, some even ragged, but they're down on the page & they're working to propel the story & that's about all I can hope for this month.

December can be for the gentle soothing of revision's loving and tender embrace. November is gonna be like sex in a public restroom with a stranger...dirty & fast!


Sunday, October 31, 2010

don't write

I have had this poem printed out for some time, the contents of it waft through my brain from time to time when I haven't been writing. Today I pulled it out from among the piles of other things that periodically also waft through my brain, so that I can tack it up in my writing space as my guide through November.

Don't Write, by Jenn Lee from her sold-out Don't Write: A Reluctant Journal:

Don't write.
It's too powerful.
It might tell someone how you feel.
How you hurt.
What you don't understand.
Don't write.
It's too powerful.
It will show who you are on the inside to the outside.
It'll blow your cover, your nice reputation.
Don't write.
It's too powerful.
You might hurt someone's feelings.
People may not like your words.
They may attack you, or abandon you.
Don't write.
It's too powerful.
It might give others hope.
Let them know they're not alone.
It might change minds.
Change directions.
Change the world.
So, whatever you do,
don't write.

Thank you Jenn Lee....

Thursday, October 28, 2010

it's official

Okay, it's official--I'm totally mad (like crazy, loony, lost it). I am a (completely naive) participant for NaNoWriMo 2010. Let the writing begin. I'm not totally sure how much I will divulge about my writing process here--I thought about creating a different blog for that, but really I doubt I'll have the time to post much during the month of November anyway. So what I do blog about it, will be here & limited.

Since I still have like 3 days to really start writing, I thought I'd flesh out some things that have been on my mind. One of the main ones being a pen name. Due to the nature of the type of writing I'm most interested in, I have always thought I'd write it under a pen name (you know, if I ever got around to writing it to a larger audience).

I thought I should do this to 1) protect myself from undue discrimination by whomever my current employer might happen to be, 2) maybe to protect myself from pervy folks who might seek me out, or 3) to keep separate creativities separate (art, writing, photography, etc). And while I often romanticised the idea of crafting some cool new name, the thought of not writing completely as ME has never sat very well with me. Plus the notion of having to keep my writing separate from other aspects of my life (whether real life or online life) seemed like such a hassle & one that I often use an excuse from diving headfirst into my writing or engaging in more online writing group opportunities.

The bottom lines is that if I'm ever lucky enough to get published, I would be 100% proud to say "that's mine...that's mine...that's mine" rather than having to keep it a secret or have to convince someone "by the way, I wrote really, I write under that pen name...this is MY book." So basically as an official participant of NaNoWriMo, it's time to just embrace it all. I have wanted to write erotic stories since a conversation I had with a girlfriend in a pub one evening about 12 years ago & I have drug my feet on it ever since. November 2010 is the point at which that changes...for me in all my glory!


Tuesday, October 26, 2010

giant leaps

I might be crazy, naive or just smoking crack, but I'm seriously considering hopping on the National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) bandwagon this year. It starts Nov 1, so I have 6 days to either talk myself out of it or create a damn logline & get organized. It will get #6 crossed off the list, so that's something, right?! :)

Plus, if I donate to a LGBT or gender rights charity, I can get access to some NaNoWriMo tips/insight from the lovely & talented Shanna Germain as I crawl through the month of Nov, so that's something awesomely win/win, right? Plus I've already had a FCKH8 t-shirt sitting in my shopping cart for several days already, waiting for payday this week (and for me to decide on the logo shirt or the dudes marry dudes shirt)!

Stay tuned...


Saturday, October 23, 2010

baby steps

Along the lines of my last post about "enoughness," I realized this mindset of perfectionism stops me in my tracks far too often. Take photography for example, often times I do not get out to snap pictures because I struggle with "what kind of photos do I want to take?" Do I take the Holga, the Polaroid, or the a digital (which is on me always). Many times I won't stop to take that picture because I don't have "the right" camera on me or because I'm not sure how to get what I want from the camera I do have on me.
Now, I'm not a Photographer with a capital P. I took photography in high school (I learned to roll, process & print my own film), I had some photographer friends in college (who were into groovy "art photography" and who introduced me to the photography of people like Robert Maplethorpe & Sally Mann), and even took a basic photo 101 class to fulfill an art credit here or there (learned rules of composition & very little else due to intimidation). And that was that...until now, until I saw everyday people taking extraordinary photos of common everyday things, during their everyday lives. And I thought--I want to do that. I see things. I want to capture those things. I will do it through a camera.

And then things start to get all complicated (unnecessarily so) do I make photos that look like that, cameras--how many different ones will I buy, I must find "cool" things to shoot now, why don't mine look like hers/his...etc. And guess what--the pleasure of simply capturing the everyday started to slowly slip out of it, like the air of post-birthday balloon, the fun factor began deflating.

Don't get me wrong...I LOVE with a capital L the various effects taking photos (especially with film) with various types of cameras can produce. I bought a Holga about a year ago & have been snapping away, yet to get any of the film processed because damn is it complicated & expensive. I have gone a couple of rounds with various Polaroids (a bum SX-70 & a champ of a 600 & a yet tried Sonar). My English BFF even sent me a found Kodak Duaflex from his father's attic, which sits proudly on my shelf. And now an old Minolta 35 mm that a friend gave me of her grandfather's which has probably never been used. But as with most things, the more choices, the harder the decision.

So this is a long way of saying that I decided just to pop out my little snap & shoot digital camera & take it on my evening dog walk. The same dog walk that day-after-day finds me saying "oh, I wish I had my camera" and "oh I HAVE GOT to remember to bring Holga/Pola/Minnie (although this chick is maxie) back to shoot this." I won't say I took THE MOST stellar photos, but I took some damn photos & that is my damn point.
It's about baby steps...about just doing it to do it, not to take the nobel peace prize winning photo (not sure if they even give prizes for that) or the most blogged about photo or the gallery-worthy photo. Just to look at life through the lense and push the button just because. The same will go for my art, my writing, and whatever else I decide I want to put my grubby little hands into & play with. As my health feels like it's improving (fingers crossed, knock on wood, religious chest cross) & I'm actually finding myself creativity capable of doing, this is how I shall unintentional step at a time.


Wednesday, October 20, 2010

i get it already

A chap called Landon commented on a post the other day: "quit kicking yourself, girl." Now mind you, Landon doesn't know me nor do I know him. Nor does he know how many times in my life I have heard this or something along the lines of this.
Honestly I don't know where this self-berating comes from (notice how closely the words "berating" and "beating" are--just add/remove an "R"). The thing is, 99.9% of the time I don't even know I'm doing it & even have a hard time recognizing it after someone points it out.

It's weird too because I think I'm a great gal. I think I have alot going for me: I'm smart, fairly attractive, talented, hip, funny, loyal, introspective, adventurous, empathetic, good at several things, knowlegable about a few things, interested in even more things, etc, etc. I guess the problem lies that somewhere deep down, perhaps I don't think I'm each of those things enough. That's all I can gather as to why I'm so fucking hard on myself when there really is no reason why I ought to be. I am also equally adept at the back-handed self-compliment or deflector of the external compliment. Someone compliments me on something, say my art, and instead of thank you, I come back with "well, I haven't made any in awhile" as if somehow that's supposed to negate what I have in fact already done...?
What is this about? Why do I cut myself off before I can own the good of me? I could go into a kazzilion & one reasons why this might be, but what's the point in that? Why not just name it & then stop doing it instead? So this is what I shall focus on...naming the good, claiming the successes, and leaving it at that without the backhanded bullshit. Yes indeedy!


Tuesday, October 19, 2010

time flies

a beachhouse in OBX...taken 2005

I was reviewing & updating my 2010 Goals List & realizing alot of it's not going to happen, but also realizing that much of it I'm going to consider that a win/win given the fact that this year has still been a struggle health-wise, but it's finally feeling like it's steadily getting better for a change (knock on wood).

At this stage in the year--2.5 months to go before 2010 officially ends--there are just some things that are not going to happen. Namely things that will require travel (California & UK). Some things are probably not going to happen (like opening an Etsy store or submitting a short story for publication...or even having sex somewhere new); however, they might happen & I'm leaving the window open for that. And then there are a few things (like buying new Fiestaware, making ornaments, and/or seeing 2 more live shows) that could easily happen if I just get it in gear. I will focus on some of these & hope to cross more off the list before this year fades away.

Stay tuned...I know I will be.


Wednesday, October 6, 2010


I'm not sure why I'm keeping this blog anymore...I'm not often inspired to write here very often, I don't feel I have much to say (aside from complaining about health stuff & the lack of creativity that ensues).

And speaking of that lack of creativity...I feel the desire to do so (both art & writing..and even photography), but I just am not doing any of it. Again I can blame it on the health woes (just feeling blah, no energy--not so sure the thyroid treatment itself is doing the trick) or on my studies for the dog training, but it doesn't change the fact that I'm just not creating...even when I do have time. And it's pissing me off...and frustrating me...and getting me a bit down lately.

That is all...


Friday, October 1, 2010

the perfect protest

Ugh, perfection...what a load of horseshit, eh? But we buy into it...over & over & over again. It keeps us stuck in that belief rut of not-enough-ness...not ______ enough (fill in the blank with whatever: smart, skinny, pretty, successful, sexy, lovable, funny, hardworking, tough, gentle, serious, silly, tall, curvy, athletic, graceful....blah blah blah, the list is never-ending)!

Enough with the not-enough-ness. Enough with this lie of perfection. Thanks to Brene Brown's call to action with "the perfect protest" and her new book The Gifts of Imperfection: Let Go of Who You Think You're Supposed to Be and Embrace Who You Are maybe we can all learn to relearn what it means to be real. And that is an awesome truth if you ask me.

And you know what else is awesome...I know what I'm buying EVERYONE for Christmas this year! :)


Wednesday, September 29, 2010

marcel the shell with shoes

I adore this video--I posted it on Facebook several weeks ago, but I should include it here for posterity. Because...I mean, c' cute is this?


Tuesday, September 28, 2010

got creativity fever

I've got a bug flurrying around's the creativity bug. I'm finding myself thinking of decorating (I desperately want to get rid of some of my furniture items, replace others, and generally get a new home groove going), and also art making (so much is speaking to me that others are doing that I'm itching to do some of my own & try some new things), plus writing (the voices are saying "put it down on paper" "tap into that thought/idea/person" but I have been ignoring the stories & characters & ideas).

This happens from time to time--it's like the creativity damn springs a leak & the various outlets I gravitate toward (interiors, mixed media, writing, photography) all start vying for attention at the same time. It's like the teacher has asked the schoolkids who knows the answer & each of them eagerly raise their hands, quietly sitting in their school seats, jutting the extended arm up higher in hopes of being noticed & called on first. The trouble with this is I never know which one to call on--which one I want to dive into--and as such, none of them get attention in the end.

I would really really really like to get better at managing/juggling my various creative interests--find a way somehow to indulge them all yet still maintain productivity with each. It will be a process I'm sure, and I'm also sure that doing ANYthing creative right now can only be a good thing.


Monday, September 27, 2010

s.p.i. & i

I know, I know...I've been MIA...again! I do that from time to time...disappear from the blogosphere. Oh well...tis what it tis, yes?

I've got lots to share, I'm sure, but I guess I 1) haven't been in much of a sharing mood, and 2) I've been busy + out of town. I just got back from South Padre Island (SPI)--that's the best beach Texas has to offer & it's pretty darn good.

Even better when you go with a group of women to connect (with each other), disconnect (from the daily grind), and reconnect (to yourself). I managed to do all of those things & it felt fantastic to do so.

I've been back a day & a half (first day back to work) and I'm slowly feeling my brain turn back on--and not the good, helpful brain way, but the gremlin brain of obsessive thinking that leads nowhere but eventual madness. I'm keeping it at bay & trying to hold onto the calm of a week watching waves roll endlessly into shore, sun shining gleefully down on shoulders and toes, and crying from laughing so hard/much with a group of grown women.
I think I most needed the girl-time (both with my BFF & new friends). I definitely also needed my happy place (the ocean--it heals like nothing else). And I needed perspective outside of my daily life to see my own reality for what it is. Oh and a tan--I needed one of those too! :)

I barely even captured any photos while there--only what I could snap on my phone really. I'm bummed about that, but that is the only thing...everything else was ab*sol*ute*ly perfect. I feel ready to tackle reality again & make it a more fulfilling one at that.


Wednesday, September 8, 2010

mad ramblings of a singleton

Now I don't want this to turn into a "dating blog" (how'd I go from a year of living creatively to rambling on about relationships & dating?), but right now dating is my new gig (as well as studying to become a dog trainer--oh yeah, there's that too!).

The thing is, I've not done it for 3 years & honestly I hadn't really had alot of practice with it before then either. You see, I was with the same man from the age of 19-31, so I lost some prime dating/learning years in my 20's.

As part of the process I referenced in my earlier post, I'm realizing some things about me--seeing some patterns & noting overlapping similarities threaded throughout my life. I have realized I approach dating much in the same way I've approached job searching. Ever since graduating from college in 1993, I have been miserable in my! But with each new job I'd seek, I'd be so thrilled just to get an interview & I wanted to make the best impression & prove I was the best candidate, so they'd pick me & give me the job! Without giving much thought as to whether I really wanted this job or to work for this company. And then I'd find myself stuck in a job I didn't like, until I got fed up & went in search of another in just the same way!

I think I've approached relationships exactly the same way. If a guy is interested in me (and halfway attractive to me in some way), well then I better take him! And then I'd spend the rest of the relationship trying to make him into the guy I would have preferred him to be instead of the one he actually was. It's like I wanted to make sure I was right for him, who cared if he was actually right for me.

I'm going to approach dating more like a job interview in reverse: he has to prove to me whether his skill set, experience level, and qualifications are good enough to get hired for the job of MY boyfriend. I know it sounds obvious, but sadly this has never been my M.O. with guys, but it is drastically changing my view of dating this go-round. Instead of seeing a delay in or lack of contact as something wrong with me (he must not like me or he must be seeing someone else better), I'm now seeing it as "well he just screwed that up...resume in the bin." It's making a HUGE difference in my confidence level & helping quiet the "why hasn't he called" or "will he ask me out again."

More dating baby steps--tiny victories at a time!


Tuesday, September 7, 2010

boxes, dating, and letting go

Man, September is definitely here--and with a bang no less. Only one weekend in & boy was it a doozie of a topsy turvy roller coaster of emotion.

But let me back up. I think I previously referenced diving back into the (online) dating pool, which I have now been wading in for about 3 weeks. I've met a great guy via the online site & have had two great dates. This is the most promising thing that's happened to me in the last 3 it's no wonder it's making me a little nutty...happy, but nutty!

This dating stuff has rustled up some festering, unresolved emotions I have about someone I fell in love with about 3 years ago. Someone I have kept in touch with every day since then, yet haven't physically seen in almost 2.5 years. At first it was easy to wait (visa issues + a demanding job made it tough). Every month I'd hold out hope that maybe this was the month the visa would get sorted out. Then the months lingered on, turning into 6, 9, 12. I made reference to meeting up elsewhere if he couldn't come here, but he could never manage the time off. He spent 7 days a week working 16+ hr days in a shithole of a country. Having a life was quickly becoming a thing of the past for him, and he was letting it. Fast forward 2.5 years & I'm still holding on, albeit angrily & with resentment oozing out from between my clenched fingers. I finally made the decision to get back out there & stop waiting, hence the online dating. But even in so doing, I was still having mixed emotions about it...still feeling emotionally connected to him. I STILL was unable to fully give up the dream I'd so stubbornly clung to.

But the Universe intervened, helping me make the final break I've been unable to make for a long time. (well I'm still in the painful process of fully accepting the break, but I have more of a peace about it than I ever have, so I've no doubt it's a done deal). I won't go into the why's & how's of it coming to pass now when it hasn't so far, but suffice it to say, some external happening pushed me to the brink of such a devastating hurt that I could no longer ignore, contain, or rationalize all the anger that's been lying in wait. It still hurts to let go of the dream & I realized, as I went about trying to gather up memories of him to box up, there are no boxes big enough to pack away a dream. I can get rid of the pictures & momentos & gifts & emails & all the other bits of history that linger in every crack & corner of my house--a house he hasn't even physically been in for well over 2 years, yet holds so much about him--but the overriding dream cannot simply be sealed up or tossed away. It will still take time, but I'm feeling freer each moment of each day.

And hopeful that my dating endeavors can now take a front seat & also be free of the ties to someone & something else. Once again, with every failed attempt at anything, I now have a more clear vision of what I want, need & deserve...and I am working every day to accept the fact that I am worth so much more than I've allowed for myself thus far. This inspires me to no end...I only wish I'd had as much insight at 29 (or shoot even now at 39).


Sunday, August 29, 2010

august break: 8/29

I shall call it: 20,000 Leagues of Washington
found along Washington Ave, Houston, Texas
taken with Polaroid 600

Looking toward the final couple of days of August Break & getting a bit nostalgic already. I haven't kept up with it every-single-day, but having it as a catalyst for taking & posting pics sure has been a nice nudge. Maybe it'll rub off for September!


Saturday, August 28, 2010

august break: 8/28

OK, I'm done with my break from the August Break...just in the nick of time given August is almost a done deal. I'm back with some new pics, thanks in part to finding yet another cool Coolidge street graffiti piece in my hood. I don't know who he/she is, but I'm digging these clever street art finds! Seems this person is down with it...makes me want to go out & find more. So far, these are the only 2 I've found.

This one, urban dinosaur, I posted just before the August Break started, so I guess technically I'm making up some August ground here! :)


Wednesday, August 25, 2010

august break: 8/23-8/25

I haven't been posting photos the last few days for August Break...I don't know why really, I just haven't. In a bit of a funk perhaps. It's that time of the month, and I'm hoping that's all it is & not some overriding or underlurking blahs because the previous couple of weeks have been great.

My energy has been chronically up (hooray) & my motivation has been following suit (albeit a bit more shyly) & my general outlook has been pleasantly positive. I think it has been a combination of improved thryoid function, along with feeling inspired about my dog traning studies!

However, I made the mistake of signing up for on Sunday...I regretted doing so about 2 hrs after I did it. It could be the cause of my current down-in-the-dumps-ness (I'm getting tired of chronic disappointments in this realm of my life) but I'm trying to keep hope alive with it all, so let's just chalk this current mood/energy slump up to monthly swings & plan to return to our regularly scheduled goodness in another day or two, shall we?!


Saturday, August 21, 2010

august break: 8/21

photo from my English BF Alan--he's with his daughter in France right now & sent me a text pic of the Eiffel Tower this morning. Wishing I was there!!!


Friday, August 20, 2010

august break: 8/20

metal wall ornament...reminds me of my hood, Houston, Texas

I cannot believe it's already August 20th. It's really true what they say, time does seem to go faster the older you get. But it's FRIDAY & that's really all that matters today!


august break: 8/19

a doorway in my hood, Houston, Texas


Tuesday, August 17, 2010

august break: 8/18

a quick snap of my pooch Eadie on the porch

My brain is bustling & bursting with ideas, to-do's, to-consider's, to-research, and all other manner of thoughts related to my Plan B...the dog training endeavor. I haven't even started my studies yet (the materials should arrive later TODAY!!!), but already I am busting at the seams with thoughts & excitement about how to do this new thing...and do it well & with gusto!

Never before have I been SO excited about a career path...or anything for that matter. Never before have I not gotten in my own way with "yeah but's" & "nuh uh's" & other forms of gremlin activity...well except maybe when I was planning my wedding. That too was FUN! The constant barrage of ideas & brain churnings are exhilerating, not debilitating. I can't quit thinking about things like business names & logos & websites or even the unfun stuff of running a business like taxes and dba's and income and liability and health insurance.

I'm looking forward to cracking my books & working hard on my studies--that's the most important part afterall--but until I get those books, my head is twirling with possibilities and it feels oh so good.


august break: 8/17

thrift store lanterns, Bastrop, Texas

Monday, August 16, 2010

august break: 8/16

ponytail palm on porch

august break: 8/15

another from my favorite photo-taking location [1520 Center St.], Houston, TX

Still trying to catch up with August Break pics.


august break: 8/14

retro Walgreens drugstore sign, Marble Falls, Texas

Making up for lost time...had an amazingly productive weekend (which means feeling better/energy...woo hoo!)


Saturday, August 14, 2010

august break: 8/13

A window view at Lake Austin Spa Resort from my day of attending Andrea Beaman's cooking class. Love the inspiration of that lady & the beauty at the spa!


august break: 8/12

Some quirky decay from 1520 Center St, Houston, TX

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

august break: 8/11

Some detail shots of my 8/6 post picture for Brenna over at
what is beautiful remains.

I think these fit in nicely with her theme!

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

august break: 8/10

Been in my head alittle bit the last couple of days...wish this guy could talk & keep me company.


Monday, August 9, 2010

august break: 8/9

tricked out pink jeep found on my way to an art festival 2010

The last couple of days have me feeling some creative tinglings going on...I sure hope I take advatnage of it & start making some new art!