Balance (3)

What the heck does being able to ride a bike have to do with finding out more about you? No silly, not that kind of balance. I'm talking about life balance. Those times when you have a gazillion things on your plate, which seems like every day, and how do you balance them so you don't go batshit crazy. Work, life, love, friends, family, alone time, the dog. It all adds up to about 76 hours a day that we need in order to do everything we need to every week. The unfortunate side is that just like your high school class president never delivered a Coke machine to the lunch room, the US President can't increase the amount of hours in the day. So you are screwed! We need to call the Mayans! The wrote the effing calendar, right? This is a fast paced society, how in the world do you keep up? You balance. And yes, if you don't figure out how to maintain balance, you will take pride in the fact that you are honestly committing to believe that you will trust with passion your intimacy when you go eff yourself (wow these are getting harder, no pun, get your mind out of the gutter). So how do you balance? Well, there's the basic "Project Manager" way (no offense to those in the field, using simply for reference) where you list out the things you need to do. Then you rate them using the simple scale of easy and hard. From there, it's a matter of preference. You can attack all the easy things first, get them out of the way and then execute the hard things. Maybe you take the opposite approach, get the hard things out of the way then bang out the easy stuff. What happens when you have things of equal(ish) weight? How do you balance that? True story. I was speaking to a colleague on the shuttle ride back to the airport last weekend and after some general conversation he says to me, "I'm removing 'easy' and 'hard' from my life." What the eff? We kept talking, and I realized that I'm actually pretty close to doing that as well. With balance comes prioritization. It's no longer a bucket of easy things and hard things. To shift your approach means you have various buckets of things of varying degrees of commitment, effort and importance. By removing the general assignment of easy and hard from the equation, you are forced to break things down and essentially rate them. By truly analyzing your list of things, it becomes evident. Once you have accomplished this, balance is pretty straight forward. You find that you will have more free time. Simple concept, astonishing results. The magic quadrant... There's also a work/life balance that is crucial. Let's face it, we all have to work. When we can find that delicate balance of spending time with family and still getting work done, then we are close to golden. And we absolutely positively need to take family in the equation. Not just our kids, but the whole kit and caboodle of family. And friends. But especially kids. If we cannot find time to spend with them, then we may as well go eff... I won't even bother spelling it out, you know. They are the future. They are impressionable and need quality time, interaction and education. If you are so wrapped up in work and cannot give your children the proper guidance, time and attention, well, then, go... it's your choice (next time).

Pride (4)

My son draws a picture of a monster with 22 eyes and a scary mouth and shows it to me. My daughter teaches me what "Mental Math" is, and I get it. My son wakes up with a dry Pull-Up, he starts dancing. My daughter won an award for good handwriting in school, she let me take her picture. Who cares? I do, because they took pride in what they did, what they accomplished. Pride is a strange word. It can be excessive.It can be negative. I go again to the wonderful world of the Internet.
[the] pleasure or satisfaction taken in something done by or belonging to oneself or believed to reflect credit upon oneself
Having pride is not being egotistical, and if you think it is, well you know what to do. Be passionate when you commit to effing yourself and make sure you trust that it is intimate and you are honest with yourself, how it feels, and believe it. But from the definition, the one word that goes blink blink in pink neon is

Satisfaction.

I think Aristotle said it better though
Now the man is thought to be proud who thinks himself worthy of great things, being worthy of them; for he who does so beyond his deserts is a fool, but no virtuous man is foolish or silly. The proud man, then, is the man we have described. For he who is worthy of little and thinks himself worthy of little is temperate, but not proud; for pride implies greatness, as beauty implies a goodsized body, and little people may be neat and well-proportioned but cannot be beautiful.
And when it is excessive, from Wikipedia, "Excessive feelings of hubris have a tendency to create conflict and sometimes terminating close relationships, which has led it to be understood as one of the few emotions without any clear positive or adaptive functions (Rhodwalt, et al.)" So take pride in yourself, take pride in what you do, but don't be excessive, you can be humble and still have pride, you just have to exercise balance (next time). [I sort of got a little hint, well, a big hint, from quite a few people that I needed to "forgive" whomever pissed in my Cheerios. No one pissed in my Cheerios, I don't eat cereal. I know it sounded like it, but it really wasn't quite that way. It wasn't a true rant at an individual, rather the concept of being honest with yourself and others. It also was a perfect demonstration of how if someone is not being honest to you, it can turn you batshit crazy, and I didn't realize this until after it was posted and a few people pointed it out. I think this means that being honest also goes down as a foundation alongside trust. Yes, "Honest" did have a negative undertone, but it did, afterwards, really drive home that being honest is a quality that I need in those that I associate myself with, and myself. I was being honest in how it came out, brutally honest.]

Honest (5)

Don't effing lie to me! I'm not going to lie to you! I will tell you the brutal honest truth and I expect the same from you. In my wonderful chain of event's last night, I ended up on the phone with someone I trust. And I was honest. You know how we all have those little phrases we say sometimes, and we don't really realize we are saying them? Well, this person has one. And every time they say it, I go giddy inside. So I was honest and said that that little phrase this person uses all the time is just adorable. Was this a come on, no, it was being honest. But really, being honest starts with yourself. It is true that a compulsive liar will get all fumbled up in the story because they are trying to keep track of all the lies. And they will slip. Why? Just tell the truth and be honest. If you tell me one thing and tell someone else something different, remember again those Six Degrees of Separation, we are only 4 and change apart, I'll find out, and I'll quickly, no, immediately, lose my trust in you. So you decide. If you cannot commit and believe that being honest is the best way to be intimate, and be passionate about it, well, you know what... go eff yourself. Sometimes, being honest hurts. I believe, though, that it hurts a lot less than not being honest. If you cover shit up...

Lies

... it's still shit underneath, and no, it will not turn into gold over time, or diamonds. And really, how can you live with yourself in a world that doesn't really exist for you? You have made it all up because you were not honest. That's OK, just like the turtle I recently had, I'm taking you back to the pond and letting you go. Don't call. Don't write. I have better things to do in life than to entertain you unwillingness to be honest. Yeah, call if effing bitter, won't hurt my feelings at all. I have pride (next time). Cheers my friends, for those that are hanging out through this all, thank you!

Trust (6)

Trust! I should be out doing yard work, but I'm not. Trust is too important. It starts with trusting yourself. If you do not trust yourself then you may as well go passionately and intimately tell yourself that you believe you should commit to go effing yourself. The story that hijacked priority as the next step in my quest is rather funny now that I've slept on it. It all started last night when the kids came in from playing. They played all day, it was an absolutely beautiful perfect Carolina sunshine day, in the mid 70's, and in November, we'll take those days with passion! My son went to his room to put his PJ's on, came back to the kitchen to beg for a snack before watching a movie. Holy what the heck!!! His stomach was deep red, like a sunburn kind of red. I asked him what happened and he didn't know. Then he said his legs looked that way too. Everyone else, out of the room, dude, drop your drawers. Panic time, did it itch, was anything swollen, did it hurt... I wasn't getting any where. You see, with a six year old, if you ask him if it itches, it will always itch. If you ask if it hurts, it will always hurt. Time to weasel the truth out of him through creative questioning. If you are a parent, you know what I mean. As a Facebook addict, of course I posted the fact that my son has this crazy rash. I got the normal replies that I would expect, from people that I trust. Benedryl. And I got the concerned replies, "I hope he feels better." And then I got this other reply that was... wait for it...

Crazy. Ass. Stupid.

But most of all, this reply was inappropriate to say the least. "It was supposed to be sarcastic." Yeah, I effing knew that, but in the context of my son's rash, it was not, nor was it obvious to anyone else on the thread. It kind of blew up from there, to orgasmic proportions (snicker snicker, he said orgasmic). I certainly called this person out publicly. Should I have manned up and just deleted the comment and called this person out privately? If it had been a week ago, I probably would have. I trusted this person, as I trust everyone on my friends list (some more than others) to make appropriate statements in context, and when inappropriate statements are made, they must be completely able to be read and understood as sarcastic. "That's a lot of effing trust you have there!" I know you are saying that in your head as you read. I do, I trust the people I associate myself with to know when it's OK to joke around. And I trust them in other regards as well. Apparently, I misjudged. What happened was that I lost my trust in this person. And when other mutual friends were brought into this situation, I also lost my trust in them. There is such a thing as trust by association. And in the day and age of the Internet and everything being online, that's a pretty huge thing. Remember, Six Degrees of Separation is really only 4 and some change these days.

Well, the situation was not resolved. I was not going to apologize, nor did I expect one. I did delete the entire thread, so those that were genuinely concerned about my son's rash, it looks much better this morning. And to those of you that I talked to on the phone last night, those of you that I really do trust, when I was stark raving lunatic mad, thank you! I think that I'm realizing a few things about trust. First, it comes in flavors. I trust a few people with a blank and signed check. I trust some people with my life. I trust some people to sharing deep and dark secrets (intimacy). Secondly, it takes earning my trust, make me believe that I can trust you by your actions. Commit your honesty to me and I'll commit mine back. And be passionate about it. Trust is not just some silly thing that you can throw around or take lightly. Also, it doesn't take much for it to all get thrown out the bloody window. One comment, one action, one slip and it's a snowball effect.

Relationships, regardless of level, are fragile. I really believe that trust is their foundation. Once you have that foundation, you can believe in the other person, be intimate with them, commit yourself to them, and do all of these with passion. Never forget, though, to trust yourself

I'm in the middle of soul searching. No, I'm in the middle of soul surfing. Figuring out what matters the most to me. Finding the right wave to ride all the way in until I reach the sand. And then I'm going back out to do it again. I probably should have gone out and bought a sports car, specifically at late 70's or early 80's Porsche 911, but that would have been easy. I don't want easy. I've lost some friends along the way, am I upset about this? Not really. I lost a possible date along the way. Am I upset about that? No. Could she have been that perfect match for me? Maybe, I guess I'll never know. And I'm OK with this. There are choices that I make in my life because I can be honest (next time) with my self.

Commit (7)

This is a hard one. I've tried this once before, and it failed. I tried again, and it failed. But taking what I've learned thus far, if you are passionate, if you are intimate and you believe, then maybe you can commit. What are you committing to? What does it mean to commit? Again, I am using commit versus commitment for the same reasons I used believe over belief. To commit requires action, constant action. Some of this exercise started out because I felt that I needed a 5 year plan. I have been with my employer for almost 6 years now. I've grown, I do different things than I used to, but I do a lot of things. And sometimes when you do a lot of things, you kind of lose a little focus in your growth, lose the ability to commit. Not so much as an employee, or to what you do, but as a person. So, yeah, a five year plan, that would fix it all. Until. One of the key note speakers at a conference last weekend says, (paraphrased) "If we wait until we get to our five year plan, we will miss the mark. The speed at which the world is changing will not wait for a five year plan to come to fruition."

Shit!

Maybe I need a 3 year plan. What if that is too long, a one year plan? The answer is no to both. I simply need to determine what I want to do next. And commit to it. As soon as possible. And if I don't act fast, I will be passionately intimate when I believe I will tell myself to go eff off. But what does it mean to commit? My favorite definition is "to bind or obligate, as by pledge or assurance." Wow, that's a lot! That's pretty close to signing those 150 pages for a mortgage. Wait, signing a mortgage is to commit to pay that monthly payment. It really means that you are all in. Unfortunately, there are a lot of people out there right now that are no longer all in to that commitment they made to pay their mortgage (yes... I know I used the word commitment, because for those people, there was not constant action). I understand there are unfortunate circumstances, I do, it's when you quit taking action that it all goes south. I can tell you that I have been in a scenario where I was paying 50% on 2 different mortgages plus rent plus car payments and all those other things like utilities and food. And then I quit my job! Why, because I was going to commit to changing careers, to go into a field that I has passion for. And I believed in myself. And I needed to be intimate and take time to study, self educate, search for a job, network. It was not easy, not even a little bit easy. But it is possible to get through those times, especially when you commit. And you have to trust (next time). [You have to prioritize was hijacked due to a conversation that happened on Facebook last night, which made me realize that you can put off prioritization and that trust is more important, funny how life is always teaching you.]

Believe (8)

This is not a discussion of faith, this is about the simple act of believing. You cannot have faith if you do not believe. I believe that in general, people are good. I believe that they want to be genuinely honest. I believe that I can make a difference as long as I chose the right things. Sometimes, though, you don't know what the rights things are. That's why I'm here right now talking to you. I'm happy, really, truthfully. But I also believe that I have more to offer, more to achieve, and this is my path to figuring it out. You must be passionate and intimate with believing in yourself and others. Notice that I am not using the word "belief." That word (strike that word from my vocabulary) is a noun. Stagnant, a thing. Believe is a verb, it is something you do, and you must continuously do it, you must take action. "Don't stop, believing" come on, sing along with me. It's a catchy tune, and it's true! I believe that you can achieve great things. I believe that you can make a difference. I believe you can go through and do a deep soul search and figure out your purpose. I believe you are truly amazing. I believe you are in control. If you tell me different, I will passionately and intimately tell you to go eff yourself. If you don't believe in yourself, why will I believe in you? When I sat down to write about believing, one of the hardest things to come to terms with is that I have to believe in myself. Without that fundamental outlook, I'm useless. I believe that I have the ability to achieve anything I set my mind to. It may take time, it may not be easy. If I commit (next time), then it will happen. Cheers my friends!

Intimacy (9)

I'll start with a story, one that is a thousand percent true. I'm planning a trip next month to visit some dear friends in Chicago. They just got married (yeah)! We started talking about what to do while I was there and I jokingly said, "find me a date and we can double, she doesn't have to love me forever, just for one night." And I was being serious. What was said back to me was, "OK, but you need to talk! The last time we tried to set you up, you didn't talk." Then last night, after hanging up the phone at around 1:30 in the morning, I said to myself, "wait, you can talk, you just did!" Today, I sit here, and I wonder to myself what the difference is. Why can I pick up the phone and talk for hours to someone I barely know and then placed in another scenario, clam up and barely speak at all. And I'm starting to get it sorted out. And I think it has to do with being intimate. What is intimacy? Well, thanks to the Internet, I get a head start.
in·ti·mate (nt-mt) adj.
1. Marked by close acquaintance, association, or familiarity.
2. Relating to or indicative of one's deepest nature: intimate prayers.
3. Essential; innermost: the intimate structure of matter.
4. Marked by informality and privacy: an intimate nightclub.
5. Very personal; private: an intimate letter.
6. Of or involved in a sexual relationship.
So what does this mean? I'll skip the sexual definition, that's an area of intimacy that I know nothing about. It's been over three years and the 3 seconds I would last would be more like the movie American Pie than anywhere close to intimate. Stop laughing, I understand that statement was too much information (TMI), we can talk about that another day. You can call me pathetic if you want, and I will politely, with passion, tell you to go eff yourself (which could be intimate for you). So let's talk about what being intimate really is and try to figure out why this applies to all kinds of relationships and why there are times when I cannot talk. From the definitions, three words stand out the most.

Close. Personal. Essential.

First, what does close mean. Close is not just a physical thing, it's more than just saying that we are near each other. It means that we can connect. I get you. You get me. We can be close on different levels, for instance, we could be close in our political views, we share the same beliefs, the same theories. In this scenario, we may also be a battleground state and completely disagree on religion. At the end of the day, we are still being intimate with each other because it is personal. It really starts to become all about opening up. Being personal. I am certainly a person that has walls I put up for some people. I don't want to let them in, but for some reason, I need them. I also have a blanket fort (not my idea for an analogy, but it works) and as long as we play nice together, you are more than welcome to come in. On some days, you may be in my blanket fort, others, you may be on the other side of my wall. However, once you are inside, we can share deep dark secrets because at that point, I've accepted you and trust you to be intimate with me. As for those other days when there is  an eight foot thick wall between us, I'll just toss over a note if I need you. Lastly, it's essential to be intimate. You may be one that is intimate with a favorite author, you are close to their words, their writing affects you personally. It could be intangibles, I'm intimate with discovering ways to teach children how to think and reason. No matter how you chose to have it, it is absolutely essential that you have intimacy in your life. Intimacy changes though. For example, I have been intimate with a software product. We were really close. I even slept with the code, literally, I fell asleep one night working with the code. I could tell you how every wheel turned inside. We were close. And since I was also passionate about it, it was essential that I stayed so close. Over time, we grew apart, she changed, I got bored and moved on. But! We still stay in touch, and she allows me to be in her blanket fort sometimes, I just can't spend the night any more. It's OK for intimacy to change, we are not stagnant creatures, we evolve as I am doing here. I'm stepping back and wondering who and what I wan't to share my intimacy with. And maybe it's just for a little bit of time, maybe it's forever. One way or another, it's there, I cannot escape it. So how does this all go back to my scenario of being able to talk to some people like we've been friends forever and others I just cannot talk to? It is forced intimacy. Maybe I take things too seriously. If I sit down for dinner with you on a date, I expect that date will be intimate (No, I'm not talking about that kind of intimate), but in all seriousness, it "should" be intimate. And that kind of scares me. I am all of the sudden completely speechless. There is this hampster in my head that just stops spinning the wheel. He gets scared. Maybe my hampster should instead run like hell! A few years ago I ran into an old high school classmate. Yeah, I'll admit, I did have a crush on her then, but we are all grown up now and I got past that. The point is, though, that we went out to dinner. We ate, had a few glasses of wine and we talked. As I drove home that night, I thought about our dinner. It's hard to describe, but as we sat there, every thing else just seemed to fade away, there was no one else at the restaurant, there were no wars going on, no one was starving, it was just the two of us, enjoying each other, being intimate. Those moments where the "rest" of the world goes fuzzy, yeah, that's intimate. That night, I could talk, and I did, and she did, and we still do, but I was in a situation where I knew the outcome, we would have dinner, we would go home and we would chat another day. We were just two friends hanging out. So then I started thinking maybe it's the unknown that I'm scared of. In the case where I was on a date, I did not know what the outcome was going to be. Would we run off and get married? Would we have a huge fight? I didn't know! And I had the expectation that the evening should be intimate as we started to learn about each other. In the case where I was out with a friend, I knew exactly what was happening, we were eating, we had a great time and we will probably (and did) do it again. Not knowing what the outcome of a situation or a relationship is going to be, not knowing if you are, or should be intimate, well that absolutely scares the shit out of me. I need to learn how to believe (next time). Cheers my friends.  

My adventures on a Mac

Santa got iPods for both of my kids, within 15 minutes they were playing music, downloading games and sending each other messages. Kids absorb, they are little sponges. Me, however, I'm old. I can still learn, but it takes me a little longer. This is also the case when I have well over 15 years of "experience" with something. This something is Microsoft Windows and various *nix platforms. So the other day I decided to get a super sexy MacBook Air. Mostly because I like toys, but also because I feel that I need to know how to use a Mac, but mostly just because I like toys. So after a day, here's my list of things that are just weird to me. 1. Is it me, or is there no such thing as a right click? 2. I use Lotus Notes, which I've installed. In Notes the shortcut to mark a message as read is the Insert key. Does a Mac not have one? If it does, I surely cannot locate it 3. How do I copy/paste? 4. Please explain to me the control, command, option, alt, fn and how they relate to the keys - it feels like overload 5. How do I get an application out of full screen? 6. I installed Firefox, but I cannot find it once I closed it last night, where did it go? 7. Is the dock at the bottom all apps or just most recently used apps? 8. I can't figure out where open applications go sometimes, how do I alt-tab like the Windows world? 9. Is there a Mac for Dummies book? 10. I'm in love with it (go ahead and say it, "I told you so") but it sure is making me feel dumb right now, and I'm a geek, so that's not cool

Pouring coffee in the dark

One, lets just assume we've gotten past the part of actually making coffee in the dark. There's potential for some insight into this task, but there is much less chance of bodily harm (unless you use a sharp knife to make coffee, which is probably a small subset of the world population and therefore, any insight would just be a waste of my words), so we will just skip to the important part, pouring a cup of that freshly brewed, dark velvety concoction that makes us think we can finally start the day... in the dark. Now why would we be awake at an hour where we would need to pour coffee in the dark? Well, it could be a thousand reasons, you can't sleep, you have an early morning flight, it doesn't really matter, you are here, in the dark and you want coffee. Another assumption not worth insight is that you didn't bang your head on the cabinet door while retrieving a coffee mug and therefore aren't lying on the floor unconscious, so let's move on. You raise the mug up with one hand, grab the coffee pot with the other and start to pour. Your eyes have adjusted slightly to the black that surrounds you, but what this really takes is awareness. So now you basically have two options. Your first option is to pour until you feel the hot liquid overflow onto your hand that is holding the mug. This is dangerous and can lead to a pretty uncomfortable rest of the day as the scalding hot liquid finds your smooth flesh. Your second option is to listen. This takes patience and acute awareness, listen for the sound of the coffee filling up the mug, wait for the precise moment when the sound of pouring coffee echos just the right notes in the mug and then stop. Your mug is full. You go on about your day until you have to pee. Three things just happened here. First, you listened to the sound of the coffee pouring. Listening is a skill we sometimes fail at, it's easy to just let it go in one ear and out the other. Open your ears, shut down your other senses, you are in the dark, you can't see, only your ears to guide you. Next, drink your coffee, consume what you just heard. Sometimes you suck it down fast, other times, it's so hot that you have to let it cool down a bit before you consume it. If you've been lucky enough to have had a coffee tasting class, you should make slurping sounds while you consume (although others might find you strange if you utilize this behavior). Occasionally, you are doing other things (shame on you for multitasking) and put your mug down and forget where it is, only to find it later at room temperature and you promptly resume consumption. Either way, you are taking it in. Lastly, and dependent on your bladder size, you gotta pee! You repeat (let it out) what you heard in your own words (yes, I know, this is stretching it). Sometimes it's right away, other times, it could be a couple of hours. But the important thing is that it's coming out. What a strange analogy for listening skills. Four cups of coffee later, I'm laughing at myself for no apparent reason, and it is not even five o'clock. It's good to laugh, some say it is the best medicine. My dog is snoring. Almost six and my mind is already racing, what's on the plate for today? Seven years I have been in this house, and it is still not exactly the way I want it. Sure, a few years ago I went mad and repainted and redecorated most of the inside. I bought some new furniture and pictures to hang on the wall, but I'm just not finished yet. It does feel like home, my home, and I'm getting there, it's just slow. I've put all of this time, money and energy into the inside, but I've been neglecting the outside. I used to keep a tight leash on the flower beds and grass (and picking up all of the children's toys outside that no matter how many times I tell them, they just will not pick up themselves), but life gets in the way. Oh, and we've had some hot hot hot summers lately, and as much as I used to like hot weather, I no longer enjoy yard work in hot weather. And then Saturday happened! My ritual morning cup of coffee in my favorite rocking chair on the front porch and OUCH! Stupid freaking fire ant bites my foot. I've been battling these nasty creatures for years, but this year has been downright nasty. I blame the mild winter (which has also made fleas and ticks bad this year). With two kids and a dog, I really didn't want to spray all those chemicals around to get rid of the tiny little bastards, so I went on a hunt with the help of Google. A 50/50 mix of Borax and sugar, Splenda (the molecular structure is apparently similar to DDT and will eat away the oil on an ants skin after consumption), burn 'em out (pyro), etc., but I reached my limits. Maybe these "natural" tactics would work, I just no longer had the time to wait and see. There must have been a million ants on the front porch alone. Off to the big box home improvement store we go. Eight gallons of ant killer later (yeah, I ain't playing!), it's time to go to work. My theory was that the (once) Koi pond (now turtle/frog pond) was their source of water, and because of the run off from the rain, the ground also stayed nice and wet. Let's remove their water source, out comes the pond and in goes some dirt leveling. After a good half day of moving all of the rocks I had used for landscaping, I don't think there was a single one that weighed less than nine pounds (if anyone wants some big rocks, they are free, just bring a trailer), I then proceeded to empty 250 gallons of H20 from the pond where I discovered the turtle eggs! Fifteen of them to be precise! I guess Mr. Turtle was really Ms. Turtle and getting lucky! I pulled all of the plants out (including the iris' that came from Ohio, I think 30-ish years ago and have moved with me all over), I now had a big old bed of dirt. Well, if you know me, I sometimes don't do things small, I don't do things easy, I pay attention to detail and now was my chance to start getting the outside "right". This was not going to be a weekend project. Yes, I had a battle with ants to contend to, but those nasty little menaces to society were forcing me to get back in the game and get it right. One more trip to the big box home improvement store and I had a trailer full of top soil and mulch (and a few new plants). Decked out in my best flip flops and a pair of shorts, yeah, no shirt (calm down ladies, I don't exactly have a six pack), I went to work. After about 30 minutes with a pick ax, I was glistening in the bright Carolina sunshine (again ladies, calm down, it wasn't a Vampire glisten like diamonds, it was stinky sweat, hardly a turn on) and determined to get this done. Or so I thought. Or until I realized that I'm not as young as I once was. Or... ah, put the kids to work!!! I kick back in the rocking chair with a great book and they get to have all of the fun (work). Or until I realize that shoveling dirt is only fun for a kid when you aren't supposed to be doing it. And then it was back to manual labor and me sweating and stinking up the air, all the while trying to envision what the end product would look like. And also thinking that this was just the beginning as the rest of the flower beds have potential as well, and potentially more ants, and I'm not giving up, this is a war that I will win! How this ten things went from coffee to ants to yard work is beyond me. Such is the nature of randomness. That's what happens when dinner plans are cancelled and ants invade. Cheers my friends! (And next time you need to pour coffee in the dark, just turn on the light)

New beginnings

Well, that's a wrap. It's legally over now even though it's been over for more than 3 years. Thank you for the absolutely beautiful children, I will love them forever (and by the way, they look more like me than they do you, see, good things do come out of bad packages!).  I will provide for them everything they need to be successful in life. I will remain civil and border on "yeah, we can still be friends" (for the sake of the kids), but the joy of today just knowing that it's really over, finally, brings tears of happiness to my eyes. I could be an ass and list out the 10 Things I Hate About You, but that's already been done in a movie (which is a fun classic up there with The Breakfast Club, Pretty In Pink, Sixteen Candles, Some Kind of Wonderful and a gazillion other awesome 80's flicks). So what's next? I don't know, a new book (that was the last chapter in that one), I could be mad that I spent the last some odd number of years with you, but I'm not, I can borrow from Fleetwood Mac and "Pick up the pieces and go home." And the book is coming! Because I can say that I did it! 10 Lines is coming to fruition, I have an illustrator and the rough copy is on it's way. Little nervous about it, but hey, you only live once! "Did she make you cry Make you break down Shatter your illusions of love Is it over now - do you know how Pickup the pieces and go home." Yes, I do know how!