Let’s Pretend I’m Blogging

29 11 2012

Bright greens and pinks and blue.

Lately I am like a stopped-up sink. So many thoughts, but I can’t get them out. If I find a thought, it’s soon lost among the rest of them swirling around.

Probably related somehow: I feel like a dolphin lost in fathomless black water, with nothing around to echolocate off of.

Pigeon happy hour, a rusty old balcony, and the moon.

There are a lot of issues coming up in my spiritual-emotional journey that I haven’t any idea what to do with.

I’ve had a cold for almost two weeks now. That’s stupid.

And I accidentally got a new cat yesterday. There is a story there, but I don’t feel like I can share it without proper pictures of her, but my camera is broken.

Oops. I got another cat.

MY CAMERA. IS BROKEN.

There is one tiny, awkwardly placed screw standing between me and a fixed camera. Because I am convinced I can fix it by myself.

Other things I can do now? Win video games. I didn’t even think I could play video games, but then all of a sudden I’d bought Epic Mickey.

upload

It’s almost December and I only just admitted out loud this week that this year really isn’t as amazing as I had hoped. It’s definitely not 2011 again, and of course my logical brain realizes that it was too much to expect this year to be good, but I’ve just been trying so hard to not be depressed, or maybe just to not acknowledge depression. Which, of course, never serves anyone well. I guess I was just so sick of complaining that I wanted to pretend I didn’t have to. On the other hand, maybe this just is part of the journey.

the next tat

Have I shared this here, yet? This is my next tattoo. When I finally (only 15 years after I started) finished reading The Lord of the Rings, Frodo (the Hobbit, not the cat) said this about their return to the Shire. I put it into a spiral because Claire once pointed out to me that as you grow, your path spirals around and around so that the same things keep coming up. The point of spiritual growth, though, is that you hope to be further along and dig deeper in each time you reach that point again. So perhaps I’ve just been hibernating; resting up until the next step presents itself.

Lil bit cloudy.

But the thing that really gets me about everything is that my camera. is. BROKEN. I don’t even understand how to operate my life if I can’t manually focus when I need to.





Mr. Tygett

17 09 2012

I got news today that Mr. Tygett passed away this afternoon. The world is a little bit sadder today. But I am so glad for all the joy he left behind. I’m glad that I got to see him once more. That he was honored while he was still here to see it. Blessings, Mr. Tygett.

Death is but the next great adventure.
-Albus Dumbledore





The Sharks Were a No-Show

13 08 2012

It’s the time of year when the leopard sharks come to San Diego’s shores. I’ve always wanted to go and now I have an underwater camera so I pretty much have to go. Also, I think it’s good therapy fodder for when my kids are grown: “And this one summer? She made us SWIM. WITH. SHARKS.”

swimmer

Only the sharks didn’t show up (my kids may or may not have been somewhat relieved). So instead we had to, like, just enjoy the beach or whatever. Meh.

jump!

Kidding. It was lovely. A tiny beach with clear water, a sunny day, excellent parking provided by the parking gods, and the water wasn’t even as frigid as usual (it was only slightly frigid). At one point I forced the kids to sit with my purse safely away from the waves while I took a short turn swimming by myself. It was either win or child neglect. One of those.

and then i made the kids sit with my stuff while i went to swim.

Days like this make me remember that I don’t hate the beach. Days like this even make me wish I owned a house on a beach. Days like this? Are totally weird. But wonderful.

goofy kids





Disneyland on Wheels

27 05 2012

tiki room

Earlier this year I invested in Disneyland passes. We had received some money for Christmas and used that towards the down payment and after that there is just a monthly fee of $10 per pass (well, I ay an extra $5/mo for mine so I can sometimes go on Sundays with grownups). These cheaper passes have certain days blocked out, but those are the busy days and we don’t want to go then, anyway. It makes Disneyland affordable. I shared the idea with Claire who decided it was brilliant (duh) so we’ve been three times this year so far (I mean together, as families).

That most recent trip to Disneyland was awesome. Largely because the girl child has been working so hard on her awesomeness, but also because she twisted her ankle a couple of days prior and after a lot of thought and consideration and false feeling-betters from said ankle, we decided to go anyway. And the ankle started complaining so we wound up renting a wheelchair. And you know what? Wheelchair trumps FastPass. Like totally.

jungle cruise

We enjoyed the lack of waiting in lines for lots of rides that day, but we really got to enjoy the benefit in Fantasyland. Fantasyland is made up of a bunch of really great rides that everyone loves so much they are willing to wait in lines for 45-90 minutes. I’ve never waited less than 30 minutes for Peter Pan and once my family waited almost two hours for Dumbo. On a Monday in the winter. But with a wheelchair we only waited in one line (10 minutes for Peter Pan, if you’re counting). The kids got to experience all sorts of rides we don’t usually make time for. Elliott declared them all “awesome”.

Untitled

I had some reservations at first about renting a wheelchair for a simple twisted ankle. I mean there are people out there with, like, actual disabilities, who are on, like, actual vacations. But once we got the chair it was so obviously the right choice. Margie was able to enjoy the day without any discomfort and we were able to enjoy the day without any whining (well, not on that topic, anyway)

So, not that I advocate child abuse or anything, but if you ever go to Disneyland I highly recommend making sure someone in your party has an injury just serious enough to make your day awesomer. Because lines are dumb.





Demon Adventures. Also personal growth n stuff.

26 04 2012

I have so much to say. But only while I’m driving or in the shower or something. I need to make a habit of audio recording myself all the time and just posting that. Only it would be SO CONFUSING for you to try to follow my brain while I talk to myself. It’s harder than following my brain while I talk to you. Which is pretty hard to begin with.

Suffice it to say that this has been a time of incredible change and growth for me. I’ve learned things about myself, and let things go to regrow more organically. I’ve learned things about life, about friendships, about parenting and my children. I wish I could document all of it, but it happens so fast, and so naturally, that I can barely make verbal note of it before I’m onto the next step. I guess I’ll have to just let that be what it is, too.

This week has been a surreal week of new things for SOAM, too. It got picked up first by the Daily Mail in the UK, and then by Yahoo (wherein a woman WHO WAS *IN* OFFICE SPACE said my website was “meh”. Which. Actually. Might not be a compliment. But it doesn’t really matter because SHE WAS TOTALLY IN OFFICE SPACE and also TALKING ABOUT *MY* WEBSITE) and a few other sources. And the traffic crashed the site. Repeatedly. Like to the point where I had to find a new company to host it for me. And that, my friends? Was beyond stressful. Tech is not my language and to try to fix something so INCREDIBLY TECHY was downright traumatic. In case you’re here for advice, the coping technique I used follows:

1. Cuss a lot.
2. Deep breath.
3. Remind self to take it one step at a time, and do whatever the smrt people say.
4. Panic.
5. Repeat.

It might need work, but it got me through.

And you know what happened this week? My first baby turned ten. TEN. Oh, you know what? It’s kind of like this. Only with less pot and no professional killing. Take out those things and it’s EXACTLY like that.

she's weird, too, though

She’s amazing lately, too. This time of change isn’t just about me (unlike most other things in this world, which totally are just about me). She’s made some incredible growth that gets me all verklempt just thinking about it.

So here’s to spring and growth and life and The Happy. And to not taking a ride on this bus.

um. i don't think i fancy a ride on THAT bus.

Or, TO taking a ride on that bus, if that’s your thing. If the demons are hot I guess it might be mine.





I only hoard SOME things.

15 04 2012

At some point in my early 20’s I realized I didn’t want to grow up to be like my family, trapped by Stuff. So I started regular purges. Living in a small apartment has helped with this. I really can’t own too many things if I still want, for instance, places to sit or walk or put my clothes. So for the most part I get rid of things as I stop using them.

titanic, second class, white star line

Except for coffee mugs.

I love them. I can’t bring myself to ever get rid of them. Even when I don’t use them. And I do tend to be rather serial monogamous with my mugs so there are some I’ve not used for years.

my favorite mugs

This picture really makes it look like this isn’t an issue. In large part because it really isn’t an issue. But I will say that these are only my favoritest mugs (not counting my Starry Night mug which is packed away with the camping supplies) and that there are more in the cupboard. The only aspect of this which threatens to maybe someday become an issue is the fact that I can’t bring myself to get rid of them. But I figure I’ve got awhile before the couch is covered with the extras and once that happens I’ll understand when you stage an intervention.

And last week I added a new mug to my collection. We’d gone to see the Titanic artifact exhibit and they had replica dishes and teacups and mugs. And while I hope someday to have an entire set of this First Class china (so we can have Titanic Thanksgivings, duh) for now I settled on this one. The First Class mug, while beautiful, is demitasse, which is fancy for “too damn small” and I’d need like 30 refills each morning (which is simply too time-consuming). So I went with Second Class which was still very classic-looking while also allowing for a decent amount of coffee (even if it is still smaller than I often need).

titanic, second class, white star line

And so I shuffled some things around in my cupboards and got rid of some of the kids’ toys and clothes* and found some space for my new fancy and slightly morbid mug. And so maybe I do hoard coffee/tea mugs/cups. I’m totally ok with that.

*KIDDING. For now.





Motherfrakking Vogons

29 06 2011

Earlier this year, I got all excited about how I was going to write a post about how applying for food stamps was a freaking DREAM compared to when I had to apply for Medi-Cal nine years ago. See, because back in the dark ages they had this policy where you showed up in person like the ancient people of 15 and more years ago. In. Person. It was torture. And – I swear I am not making this up* – we waited in that room for FIVE HOURS. To get an appointment.

But 2011 is awesome in so very many ways. And one of those ways is that the government figured out how to use the internet at some point in the last nine years. So all I had to do to apply for food stamps was spend about 30 minutes online filling out a form and sending scans of my info in. They called me back the next day and within a week and only an additional 20 minutes spent at the office itself to sign papers and get my fancy ATM-looking card, I was finished. It was awesome.

More awesome? All the places that take food stamps. Which is pretty much everywhere. Trader Joe’s, Whole Foods – even Costco! And while WIC didn’t work well for my family all those years ago (I think there have been some good changes to the program, but I really don’t know) due to all the dairy and processed foods, food stamps allow me to buy all sorts of awesome, organic, gluten-free, whole and healthy foods. It’s awesome.

And I know some people feel ashamed at needing help, but I don’t feel ashamed about being low income – I’m certainly not cheating the system, I’m just trying to live. (Admittedly, help feels more awkward coming from friends or family than from a faceless government.) I’m pretty strongly Democrat in this way – I think the government should act as a parent to its people by supporting them when necessary. (I think there should also be a choice to how much the government requires of its people who are receiving help – and also those who aren’t, but that’s a different subject entirely.)

So things were going along swimmingly until Matt Lauer screwed up my life. I won’t repeat the Week o’ Thursdays I wrote about in that post, but suffice it to say that it was really, really difficult to wade through that giant, stinking pile of bureaucracy. But it was all smoothed over and Life was OK again.

And then I got a letter. This letter stated clearly that since my income had changed, therefore my monthly allowance had changed from $42.23 to $42.23. That’s not the actual amount I get, just some geeky numbers thrown in as an example to show you what the letter looked like. Yeah. They actually spent time, money and resources on that, not to mention postage. A few weeks later I got another letter in the mail. This letter stated that if my income ever goes above $______ I need to alert the County within 10 days. Unlike my first example in which I changed the facts to protect my privacy a bit on the interwebz, this time I changed NOTHING. Yeah. They sent me a letter with absolutely zero helpful information in it. Now I don’t mind paying taxes at all, but I really generally prefer they go to more important things like teachers or roads or fire departments. But that’s crazy. Or, more correctly: it’s crazy when Vogons are in charge. Which is clearly what’s going on here.

And, of course, I still can never get through. I try to be patient because with all the budget cuts and the terrible economy it means that more people need more help and there are less people to help them. I feel more sad than anything when I’m unable to get through. Sad for the state of things.

And just a little bit afraid that they might try to read me poetry.

*To borrow a phrase from the Wise Dave Barry.








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