going there

Working on getting back to basics, back to simple, back to happy. Seems like this is what I'm always working on, but I get closer every single day! And afterall, that's what life's all about right? Taking things a day at a time, learning to breath, becoming who we're supposed to be, coming into our own.... For me it's all about having camera in hand and taking it one country back road at a time. So many great adventures waiting on those back roads, country is so good for you. Fresh air, beautiful scenery, and if you're lucky you might just stumble upon a piece of history.

Pieces of history that will take your mind back and make you wonder about the people who made a home here, wonder who they were and what their lives were like. And the people you will meet out in the middle of nowhere on a steamy hot summer day! People with stories and roots, people who work the land and full time jobs too. People like Dr. John Craghead on county road 308 who'll stop what he's doing to shake your hand and offer you a cold beer while you listen to stories about anything and everything you might want to know. And Ruth Franklin, the ruthless old German broad who will most assuredly meet you with a shotgun if she catches you get out of your car on that old country road where it's posted everywhere that you best keep driving because the only thing open to public is the road but not the land on either side.

Most of life has been spent just floating through, not really having purpose or focus. I have a lot of regret and bad memories, but the true and plenty blessings surpass all of those by leaps and bounds. Through the hard times I have learned to recognize the beauty in everything, no matter what or where. You have to, sometimes it's all you have to keep you going. I've learned that most of life, kind of like my writing, doesn't really make a whole lot of sense. It can jump all over the place from one thing to the other and back and leave you with whiplash. But if you focus on the good and set your sight on what's right, you'll probably be pretty okay when it's all said and done.

Go on and find what makes you happy and get to it.



Heavy distraction, losing traction.
Sadness creeps in and chokes out.
A tsunami drowning out any sign of light. 
No rest for the wicked,
you've taken it to new height, 
taking over mind, body and soul. 
No longer mine,
but puppets in this dark and dangerous marionette game. 
No sleep, only tears and fear and emptiness
that fill this hollow shell of the person that I used to be. 
Like a deadly addiction that I can't shake.
I picked my poison,
my favorite sin has all but done me in.
But make no mistake,
I may be bent beyond complete repair
but I will never be broken...


Monkey on my back

As we settle into the new year, I lay here thinking with a twisted mind. A conversation plays out daily in this house, usually initiated by myself: please don't let this turn into every other relationship, please don't turn into every other man. Sometimes there are tears, sometimes voices are louder than they should be.
And then it hits me today, that what I took away from my previous relationship of 15 years, what I thought was dead and buried, has begun to surface from the grave and rear it's ugly vicious head. When I left that relationship two years ago, I took absolutely nothing with me except the inability to trust one single person, regardless of the fact that this or that person undoubtedly deserved all of my trust because they hadn't proven otherwise.
In my mind, the tiniest little thing can set off a wave of panic that overtakes every single molecule in my heart and soul. Flooded with insecurities and jealousy, questions and doubt. Tragic how the mind can play tricks on you because of things that happened a lifetime ago. Seriously tragic.
I don't care what anyone says, you cannot control your feelings and thoughts. I don't buy that shit for a minute. Yes you can attempt to focus on other things, mindful thinking, blah blah blah... but the ugly issues are still there, just beneath the surface, waiting for their chance to pretty much ruin any chance of happiness that is afforded you.
Hello, my name is Tiffany, the monkey on my back goes by the name of Apparently Unresolved Issues.


one wish

Dear Santa,

If I could have anything in this world for Christmas this year, my one wish would be the ability to trust without fear. All I want is to know what it feels like just once in life. To know that there is just one thing in life that I can trust without doubting or worrying or wondering.
I'm not sure at what age, or what the circumstances were, when I learned about not trusting. Must have been pretty young, because I still remember being 12 and not trusting one single soul. I thought I was just being tough and independent but the reality of it was just that I knew that as far as relying on anyone, I was pretty much shit out of luck. So I grew a hard heart and learned to rely on myself and no one else.
I have loved and been loved in life, but never trusted it to not break my heart. How sad is that? It became a game of proving myself and others right, that you just can't love without being hurt.
But I'm tired now.... tired of a hard heart and spending life in fight or flight mode.
So Santa, just this once I would like to take the gloves off and step out of the ring and trust that everything is really going to be okay. Thank you.


Puppy love

Callie Comes Home

Spotted her picture on the Happy Dog animal rescue website and knew that I needed to bring her home. Cold and drizzly all day, I got there and she was in a large pen with four other big dogs, all of them jumped on me except her. She attached herself to my hip and there she stayed, like she knew. Funny how love works that way, you just know. 
"Load up Callie, let's go for a ride!" and don't think she skipped a beat, she knew. 
She's been here for a whole four hours and I am so head over heels in love with her. I thought I needed to rescue her but really it was me who needed rescuing. 
Go figure.


on a very good day

A trip to the library was in order today, can't wait to get my reading on again, it's been way too long since I was able to make it through a whole book without distraction. How about you, what have you been reading lately?

Feeling grateful for so many things, both big and little, tonight. Family and friends who have lifted me up over the years, reminding me on a daily basis that I am good enough exactly the way I am. On days when I am at my lowest and feeling like I'm all alone, they never fail to reach out and hold my hand until I'm ready to stand again. And when I'm at the top of my game, they're right there in the cheering section, routing me on and telling me that they believed in me all along.
Why is it that we are always our own worst critics, and at times our own worst enemies? Why can't we love ourselves the way that others do, with kindness and compassion, and most of all - forgiveness...

I had a meeting with the editor of the local paper this morning, he likes my photos and has extended an invitation to begin doing some freelance work for them. This meeting came about as a direct result of someone viewing my photographs and actually liking them, and I'm finding myself scratching my head and shaking it in disbelief. Don't get me wrong, when I sort through my work I love what I see, but it's the subjects in them that I love - those moments captured forever in time, and they are mine to enjoy and share in any way I like. So putting them out there for actual critique and possible rejection? Scary, like jumping off a cliff scary.
But these beautiful wings which have formed from hardship over the past few years will carry me through just fine, I'm sure of it!


lazy days

Of all the days of my life, I love the ones that belong completely to myself the most. The days with no time restrictions, no rules, nowhere to be - unless I want to be there. No pressures or people to please.
Sleep all day or run and run until I'm exhausted. Cook a big meal or eat a $1.00 frozen pizza and then drive into town for a euro-tart frozen yogurt in my pajamas and messy hair, if it pleases me.
Take picture after picture, or lay the camera aside and just live the movie of my life, hoping to retain things in my mind's memory bank.

Life is pretty mundane lately... go to work and wait for days off without much of any excitement or stuff going on in between. Happens every year around this time, no motivation and lack of words, hell, lack of thought for that matter. Just a lot of blah and bleh going on. But the good thing is, eventually that all subsides and better things come in to take their place. Autumn is a time of renewal for me, but it comes in it's own time, at it's own slow pace.

All moved in to this new phase of life, and a new house as well. CN is on the road for two weeks at a time and only here for a couple of days in between, so there is an abundance of time to work on making this a home. This is the beginning of our life together and when I'm really old and a lot more gray, I want to look back on this time with happiness in my heart. And maybe a little laughter at how we took a nothing place and turned it into our everything, at least until something better comes along for us.

Everyone is scurrying around, making things happen for the holidays. The kids will be 20 miles down the road, with their babies, in a week from now. I won't get to see them this time because I'll be working, but oh do I miss them so. But I am glad that they will be with family this year, taking turns with each of my parents. My daughter places much importance on keeping tradition and holding family close, and has her priorities so much straighter than I ever have. I adore her for that.

Coffee's done and breakfast is waiting to be cooked. Off to clean and pack a box or two, if I feel like it.



so this is me

Sometimes the best gift of all that you can give another person is the hardest one you'll ever have to give, and that is to let go and let them fly. Birds don't belong in cages, neither do people.
When you finally find something or someone that stirs your soul and wakes something up inside of you that you didn't even know existed, you want to hang on to it with all of your might and not let go to save your life - but be careful how tightly you squeeze. Sometimes passion and love for another person can be all consuming and you can lose focus on any and everything else, for them it can be like a choking suffocation, sucking the very last breath right out of them. That love can be an unintentional lock on the birdcage of their heart.
Take a deep breath and just let go, assuring them, and yourself, that what you want for them, above all else, is their true happiness, whatever that means for them. If it is meant to be that they walk down the path of life beside you, trust that they will fly right back home when they are weary and the day is done.
Unconditional love means just that - no cages, no locks, just the freedom and respect to make ones own choices without fear...

So this is me
letting go
hoping for the best


day 3 belongs to me

Day three of rethinking, retraining, focusing, and most of all trusting...
Slept in late, lazed around, took myself to a movie, read, wrote, drank in solitude and my own company instead of worrying or feeling guilty or thinking about all of the other things that I should be doing besides taking care of myself, mysoul.
Didn't take it personal when he was a little short because he was exhausted, or when I got that certain look from her that brought me back to that icky place in my childhood. Okay I lie, I took it personal, for about 5 seconds, and then forced myself to take it to a different place and just not give a flying f*ck.
Standing back and looking at the footpath that my feet have created on the road less traveled and thinking that life is good, so very good. Remnants of that dirt between my toes stands as proof that I traveled down that road and survived, and remind me that I can travel down a different one now, one that's less difficult but more fulfilling.



Forty-five years and some odd days, every.single.day. I have focused obsessively on how my life fits in with others. What I can do to make others happy, how do I keep from disappointing, how things that I did affected others... and I did not rest easy if there was even a hint of discord. Even if those others didn't think twice about me at all because they were too busy obsessing on how their lives fit in somewhere else.

I continuously solicit reassurance in one way or another. Reassurance that he loves me, or that she approves, or whatever the the case may be. And when I don't feel it, I let it send my life into a whirlwind of self-doubt and panic, jumping to conclusions and thinking the worst - and once again I don't rest easy.

Looking back on life, I know the reasons that these things happen, and why it's so difficult to stop them. It takes rethinking, retraining, focusing, motivation to change. And most of all trusting.

But today, it's different, because I will make it so. Today I will not worry about whether he loves me, or if she is disappointed in anything that I do. And should the worry start to creep up on me I will shut it out until I feel sure of myself again in the fact that this is my life and I will live it in the way that is best for me, or simply in the way that makes me happy. Nor will I worry about whether that makes me selfish or not. If so, then so be it, call me selfish. I deserve it after all these years of devoting every waking second to the opinion and desire for reassurance of others.

Don't ever offer your world up for everyone else but yourself to inhabit, leaving yourself lost and virtually non-existent. Make your world and your life your own. If others love you, they will come along for the ride, but the ship will sail when you are ready, not them.

Here's to day one of selfishness.


brought to you by the letters ME

One step forward, two steps back. The harder I try the worse it gets, like a sinkhole threatening to suck the life right out of me. Shut up and look pretty, no matter how I fought it, I still ended up giving in to it in the end - always. Betraying my own sense of well-being and despising myself for it.
On the outside I appear to have it all figured out. Strong willed, heard headed, fearless, and yes part of the time just plain stupid is the actuality of it all. Don't be fooled by appearances.
Oh the advice I give to others is ever-wise and meaningful. "be true to yourself, never settle for less than you deserve, etc.. etc..". Meanwhile, I drown in a sinkhole of self hatred and sabotage. I pretty much always give in to things I shouldn't, and never even try for things I should, always making justifications and excuses for why I keep holding on to the things that will do nothing good in my life.
Why do we find it so much more exciting to build a house in a sinkhole instead of on solid ground?
Note to self: Girl, grow a damn backbone and be true to yourself for god's sake! It isn't too late to take a stand in this war with yourself and say that this isn't how your story will be told. Stop screaming for someone to let you out of the room, the door is unlocked, let yourself out
Note to the people in this world who stand firm in your wish for my happiness and still stand by me even when you're shaking your head and wanting to choke me, over and over and over again. And especially the ones who love me enough to tell me what I don't want to hear but need to. You freakin' rock, it's just that simple.
Note to the people in this world who are all too happy to let me allow you to keep shoveling quicksand on top of me (and yes it's me that allows you - not you in control): This day is brought to you by "It's all about me now", so please don't stand in front of me or yank my arm out of it's socket as I make my way down the road to happiness. I'd hate to have to mow you over, you son of a bitches...



Today I fully grasp the concept of being quiet and still. I wrap my mind around it like a vine on a pole and realize this is why I'm here, in this place at this time in my life - to finally get it.
Toast and coffee are savored as I read through the month of June in Romancing the Ordinary. A hummingbird flits and flutters around the tree that grows up through the porch, and I think that pictures would be nice, but I'm too content and lazy to go grab the camera.
I love the month of June, when mornings and evenings still carry a cool breeze as we bid hello and goodbye to another day. Summer is in full swing and my mood is light and happy most days. All year I wait impatiently for this time to come, when depression and anxiety are swept under the rug to make way for much more desired frames of mind.
So much better to find beauty in sunlight rather than darkness, although I am without a doubt capable of both.
Sunflowers shine their pretty faces at me to remind me that all is well, and once again I am grounded.



I knew the second I met him that I would fall and it would be hard
I couldn't have been more right about that, I fell, and it was hard.

That scar that runs down his entire cheek, a daily reminder of his past,
makes me want to run my finger across it and kiss his troubles all away.
Rarely a smile upon his face, but when it shows, it shows big and bright
and lights up my whole world. When he smiles he means it,
something I always appreciate in a person.
There's a young boy in the shell of a grown man - (big and burly, tattooed and temperamental), one who longs for love just as we all do, but too stubborn to break out and embrace it -
too proud for his own good, and many times his own worst enemy.
He tells me that I'm amazing when I need to hear it the most
and makes me laugh with comments like "you're cranky because you're so
beautiful you don't know what to do with yourself".




sick of it all
tripping on manholes
can't stop the fall
try try again
that's just a crock
tiny blue pills
where's the doc

not double jointed
but pulled in directions
hear my limbs breaking
mind full of infection
poison takes over
and starts to consume
can't take anymore
i retreat to a room
where no one can find me
or hear my lips screaming
see the tears flowing
invisible seeming...
wake me when the world stops turning
i need to step off to stop the burning


when all is said and done...

momentary distraction
temporary satisfaction
big man on campus
you thought you were...
loneliness will come your way
panic sets in as it chooses to stay
for more than just a moment,
or a day...
playing games 
with the queen of hearts
is a dangerous thing in the end,
on your part...
when everything is said and done
she'll always have her day in the sun
sitting next to karma 
and laughing about the fools
of days gone by...
careful son, you just don't know
where she comes from
or where she goes,
but she's traveled long 
and played real hard,
know for certain
that this time
you've crept 
into the






Oh how I long for summer... 
long walks in the country, dipping bare toes in the water, camping and hanging out by the fire at night, gathering with friends to chat on and on about everything and nothing at all. 
long tall glasses of sweet iced tea on the back porch, good food on the grill, 
kids running around everywhere hysterical with laughter.
those are the days I long for. 
last summer was spent in solitude, still wrapped in the invisible chains of transition and emotion, 
this year will be all mine to do with as I please, 
and I 



Someone please remove this chip from my shoulder, 
weight of the world as big as a boulder
i hate myself for hurting so many
over and over 
never learning from my mistakes...

I fall to my knees, screaming, 
arms reaching to the sky
begging forgiveness 
all falling on ears which are
deaf from the exhaustion of it all



Listening to Bono sing One on pandora, love that song and his voice, they make me want to sway the day away, eyes closed and arms lifted, letting my body move in any way it feels like.
There's frost on the ground this morning but the sun is shining brightly and I feel creative and happy and ready to take on the world. Happiness is not an emotion that graces my presence on a daily basis, so when it does I grab hold of it with all my might until it slips through my grasp and melancholy takes over again. I've learned to live with life that way, it's the hand I've been dealt and I try to make the best of it. Hell, no one's happy all the time, right?
Just started a new photo blog, and immediately after that one of my sweetest girlfriends shared a link to a photography project called 365 Words Through Photos, nice! I wasn't really going to share the new blog with the entire world, so as not to offend or upset certain people, but then I remembered that I am "completely unpretentious" and unapologetic. Which gives me permission to do as I please without fear of criticism. Oh criticism will always occur, I just don't fear it anymore.
Spend your day being good to yourself, go do things that make you happy!



What is it about love that makes us want to give ourselves away, throw caution to the wind and lust with wild abandon, even when we feel (or sometimes even know) in our heart of hearts that we will be broken by the time it's all said and done? How is it that we lose ourselves so quickly in the moment, the feeling, the rush of something new and dangerous and beautiful...
Staying true to yourself while loving like crazy, heart and mind co-existing peacefully with each other, trusting but allowing yourself to be swept up in the moment - are these things all realities or are they done with serious smoke and mirrors?
I have always been incredibly passionate about so many things, love definitely being no exception. I feel with every fiber and to the very core of my being, and do not know how to exist in any other way. I have always been the type to see the beauty in danger and tragedy, morbid I know, but it is what it is. My eyes always cast themselves on the deep and dark and mysterious, these including the people I seem to be attracted to, whether sexually or otherwise. When something grabs hold of my soul I always let it, throwing myself into it with everything I have, I'm just not wired to be cautious, but with that comes the feeling of living in perpetual emotional hell because there is always let down after giving all of yourself to something or someone.
So why do I keep hoping for a different outcome when I lend myself to situations which are not capable of producing anything else but the same as always outcomes?
Don't answer that, it's really just a hypothetical question, one I already have the answer to.  In all reality I've got all of this well under control, it's just the smoke and mirrors that make it appear otherwise, I swear...



Warning, I'm all over the place this morning, so if you make it to the end of this post, you probably deserve a freakin medal, or at least some cake or something.

I've answered so many Happy Day wishes that my hands are cramped, wow, that pretty much makes me one of the luckiest girls alive! Nothing like turning another year older to remind you how truly blessed in life with beautiful family and friends you are!

A birthday card came from my mom yesterday with a letter enclosed that brought me to my emotional knees. I think deep down in our hearts we all long for the day when our parents confirm that they love us for the people that we have grown into and not just as their children. She has not always appreciated the way I have lived my life, always wishing that I would have taken an easier road, but the things that once left her scratching her head and shaking her fist are now things that she has come to appreciate and love in a weird and ironic sort of way. I won't share her words here, but rest assured she has reassured me about so many things that I have wondered the majority of my life.
So anyway, I sit here, still in my pajamas, mulling a few things over in my scrambled little brain. For some reason a comment from a friend does not rest easy, "what is it that makes you always crave emotional reassurance 24/7?" It really hits home and I'm left wondering what the hell and why the hell and how can I fix it and make it not so. And... and... and... What is it that's not right in my heart or head that makes me need that from others instead of relying on myself for it? Always jumping to conclusions and thinking the worst, what makes a person do that? It takes a HUGE effort for me to take a deep breath and get back to good with my thinking where all that's concerned. Huge conscious effort to stop dead in my insecure tracks and remember that I'm good enough exactly the way I am and if someone doesn't appreciate that, then I don't need them in my life. And it's the same for you too, you are good enough, always have been and always will be. But at least I'm actually stopping in my tracks and remembering that, because it wasn't always so, big strides in small steps, that's how it goes sometimes I guess.
In the end, when I lay my head down tonight, the good of this day will have far outshone everything else. My daughter made me a wonderful breakfast, coffee filled my favorite mug, lots of hugs and kisses from my favorite 6 year old, well wishes from tons and tons of family and friends, and the sound of an incredibly gorgeous man singing happy birthday to me over the phone first thing this morning... it's a good day!



I have spent the last few weeks in some fine company and now it's time to come back down and tend to the mundane tasks of life, running errands and all that jazz. I'm hormonal and can't think clear enough to do anything without crying, have been that way for a week now, what the hell's with THAT? How can someone tough as nails be so weepy? Silly girl, get your head together for christ sake!
Coffee's so good this morning, haven't had any in what seems like forever, and here in a little while I will make myself that oatmeal I've been craving. It's really cold outside, something I expect for this time of year, but still cold none the less and hibernation always does it's best to seduce me back to bed when it's this cold. But not today, there are things to do and people to see and... well you know, some semblance of life to live.
Hoping your day is filled with those things that bring you comfort and happiness, be good to yourself and stay warm!



I swear if I read the words "New Year" one more time I'm going to scream and fall down on the floor in a mad hissy-fit. Don't get me wrong, I love the chance to turn over a new leaf and start fresh, I just hate reading the same words over and over again everywhere I turn.
You won't find any resolutions here, I just don't do them. Being reminded of how I failed at something later on down the road just doesn't appeal to me. at all. But here are a few things that I will do, with all certainty and without a doubt.
I will love and be loved in a way that I've never known before. Bottom line, it's simply my turn...
I will savor goodness in everything from the way just washed sheets feel on my tootsies to the very last drop of coffee in my big ol' mug. 
I will hang on tight to my favorite 6 year old in the whole world when he comes bursting into my room at 6 a.m. just to tell me he loves me. I know all too well that these moments don't last forever, as well as how abruptly they can be stolen from you.
I will stop and get those pictures, no matter where they are or what I'm doing. Those pictures that before I always wished I'd gotten but was too busy doing who the hell knows what.
I will write more, because even if no one else in the world thinks that I have anything interesting to say I just don't care anymore! ha!
See, no resolutions, no reasons to fail - only lots more of the things that I love and that fulfill me.
2009 was a year for discovering truths about what I thought my life was, and then waving away smoke and shattering mirrors.
2010 was the year of transition and learning to be alone, I mean truly alone. I was always surrounded by people I love, but I needed to learn how to think for myself again, and sleep alone at night.
This year will be my year of rediscovery and bringing myself back from the brink of self-loss, a year of planting my feet firmly on the ground and growing brand new roots. This time I will choose where I am planted, not someone else who doesn't have my best interest at heart. I will be good to myself and water the grass under my feet so that something beautiful comes to be, because I have learned that I am the only one who can do this, and that is completely fine by me.


wrapped up

all wrapped up
hard to breath
open the doors
see what's beneath
reaching out
drawing in
gaze of eyes
touch of skin
don't hold your breath
just let it go
how will you know
watch the ride
it's part of it all
sometimes you stand
sometimes you fall
but it's that ride
not the destination
that we're after
after all
the thrill
the pill
that's scary to swallow
take a hand
walk into tomorrow


My oyster

 Christmas Eve once again, places to go - people to see, exciting things going on! So many babies will head off to bed tonight with sweet visions in their heads of the man in a red suit, hoping that when they wake up they will have succeeded in convincing Santa that they really were good all year... really. And I can think of a few grownups that might be hoping the same thing, yeah, you know who you are. 
Christmas is definitely not my favorite time of the year and never has been, too much stuff going on, it's like living in a hurricane for months before it actually happens, makes me want to crawl in bed and pull the quilt over my head until it's over. So much chaos and drama over one single day? Really? And then before you know it, it's over and the let down sets in, until it starts all over again next time. 
As for me, I'd rather bask in the excitement and anticipation of what the new year will bring! So many new experiences to be had and memories to be made, a chance to start over fresh every single year - how awesome is that? I wonder how many new friends I'll make, new things I'll learn, new places I'll go. I have finally opened my eyes to the fact that the whole world really is my oyster, to do with as I please, my life is my own and so is happiness, should I choose to embrace it. Coming into my own was painful as hell, but I did it and am so ready to take on the world and whatever it brings my way! But I won't sit and wait for it to happen anymore, I'm getting out and grabbing it for myself and any little (or big) unexpected surprises that I happen to find along the way will only be icing and sprinkles on the cupcake.

Here's to icing and sprinkles, the things that make life so worth living!!!

I hope that you all have a wonderful Christmas, and that you find yourself surrounded by people that you love. And if by chance you happen to be spending it alone - lucky you, you have the whole day to spend doing absolutely anything you want!! Just make sure it's something that makes you happy.


Happy Day!

"A daughter is a little girl who grows up to be a friend" 
Happy Birthday to the absolute light of my life. You may be all grown up but you'll always be my baby!
Love you, Mama


this moment

{this moment}

{this moment} - A Friday ritual started by SouleMama. A single photo - no words - capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember.


Schtuff of absolutely no importance, except maybe to me...

Well, I've had a good couple of days since my last post. Got my old Nikon camera out and took a drive with a friend out to Chalk Ridge Falls to take some shots. I didn't take many because we got busy talking and hiking and getting lost, but the ones I did take will be good I hope. Some of the magic was gone as soon as I remembered I wouldn't see them right away, which I love about digital, but that's okay, it will be nice to see how they come out. It was so pretty there, even with most of the leaves dead and gone and listening to the falls makes me feel just a little less anxious, definitely my favorite local place to visit.
Stepped outside my comfort zone today and took on a job with a cleaning company. Not the work I want to do or am experienced at, but it's good and honest work with a paycheck attached, I get to wear jeans and a company shirt, and there are usually no weekends or evening work, so for now I'm cool with it. PLUS I get to work with them on a house that Extreme Home Makeover is building for one of the Ft. Hood shooting victims this weekend, how cool is that?! Iit will be so interesting to see how all that really works, I've been a fan of the show for years now.
Okay, taking a chance here by saying that I'm going to do something, cus anyone who knows me knows that I rarely ever do anything once I've actually said I was going to. I am a true collector of wonderful ideas all day long but the second I utter the words "I'm going to do that or make that or cook that, or anything else, forget it - I can sit and watch it fly right out the window like a little sparrow trapped in a kitchen. Am I the only one with this problem? Please say no... Anyway, I saw these over at Attic24 (one of my favorite blogs) and AM going to make some. I love the colors and shapes and ooh they're just too pretty not to don't you think? Star decorations and Bauble Decorations, check them out.
And oh yeah, just on a side note, I think I've decided to go back to school before it's too late. I know some people say it's never too late, but if I want to actually do something with a degree I have to face the fact that at some point, it would be too late to go for anything other than shits and giggles. I got all set up with financial aid and everything a few years ago and ended up chucking it for stupid reasons, biggest mistake ever, time to fix it, and no one to stand in my way except myself this time...
Hope y'all are having a great night, it's almost the weekend just hang in there baby!



One of my very best friends has decided that soon she will take her family and move to the mountains, and will do whatever it takes to make it happen. Honey, that's BIG, I'm tellin' ya, to make big changes, as scary as they might be, and finally do something real and happy, instead of just sort of floating through life. And while that life may have been very very pretty, the new one will be beautiful beyond belief because it will be real and happy, and I love her for taking that leap.

Her decision has got me thinking about choices and mindfulness and doing whatever it takes to really live, even if it's scary as hell. Living with a purpose instead of just floating. It doesn't have to be as big as moving to the mountains, but it can certainly be in the little things we do every day. You know, stepping out of whatever your comfort zone is and trying something new or whatever. Not procrastinating or waiting for another day/better time. There is no better time, and there may never be another day...

How many days have I let just pass me by where at the end of the day, when I lay my head down, I couldn't think of one thing that I'd done that was productive or meant anything other than being a good person. (I try to always do at least that). How many days where I could have learned or done something new or fun because I didn't take a chance for fear of failure. 

Forty-four years in this old life for me, full of just getting by without a real purpose. Oh, don't get me wrong, I've done lots of really cool or daring things but only because those things or situations presented themselves to me. Never did I just go in search of them. 


Today I will be brave and step outside of my comfort zone. Today I stop saying no to really living with a purpose just because I'm afraid of either failing or not living up to someone else's expectations. Because when I really think of it, there isn't even anyone out there that expects anything from me, that's the great thing about being an adult with no true responsibilities other than to be a good person. 

Everyone's life is their own, to choose and live however they do or do not want, I think I will live the second half of mine being real and happy. How about you?


this moment

{this moment}- A Friday ritual. A single photo - no words - capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember.


this moment

{this moment}

{this moment} - A Friday ritual started by SouleMama. A single photo - no words - capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember.



While we've all been busy doing mundane every day things, Maggie and Mr. Curry have been busy growing a miracle, Ever Elizabeth. A more important job than making and growing a baby, there has never been one, not that I know of.
I've been reading Maggie's blog for a long time now, she had me at the very first word that I read and I haven't stopped since. Her words have a way of dancing around a person's soul, like a moth to a flame, and never have I not been affected in some way or another by what I've read, even if it's as simple as identifying in some way with what she has to say. So Maggie, many thanks go out to you for sharing that gift with us...
So many of us in the blogging world have been watching this little miracle of Ever unfold, created through the powerful love of two people who have truly loved each other since the beginning of time, through good times and bad, loss and happiness, bringing two families together and making it work, no. matter. what. Man, that's deep and something we should all be lucky enough to experience in a lifetime.
So while we all sit on the edge of our seats, waiting for Ever to make her entrance into this world, into a family who will infinitely adore her, there's a virtual baby shower going on!
Now we all know that things aren't easy these days, but out of negative ALWAYS comes something positive (I'm a firm believer in that), and I feel that we've all been forced to get back to basics, to a simpler time when we could turn to each other to help out where there might be a need. A very good thing, in my book.
Won't you head on over and at the very least leave a message for Maggie and her family, and maybe even donate if you feel compelled to do so? Oh, and while you're there, read a word or two, you won't be disappointed, I promise!
Here are the links to the hostess' blogs, each have a paypal button in their sidebars for a maternity leave fund.

A Moon Worn as if it Had Been a Shell
Bless Our Hearts
Petit Fleur
Unsweet Mama

lifting fog

Here it is almost Thanksgiving, how did that even happen? Days grow cooler and slowly my focus comes back, I mean slooooowly. I've been so out of focus for so long, not wanting to admit it, always acting like I've got my shit together. I'd like to say that it's the time of year, man would I like to say that, but it's like this for me off and on all year long. There are good and focused days splattered here and there, but for the majority I spend lots of time wondering where and who I am and what's up and what am I supposed to be doing with my life and why am I not doing it already at the age of almost 45... 
I am in the habit of procrastinating and letting days pass by without doing much of anything but dreaming and reading and writing.... anything that takes my mind away from reality is pretty high on my list.
In the habit of saying "I need to get my shit together", um yeah, whatever... this is about together as it's going to get, so I might need to start dealing with it and figuring out how to work with it or by the time I blink my eyes next I will be 90 and still saying "I always meant to get my shit together", pretty sad and pathetic if you ask me, or anyone else.
I think that, in all honesty, real life scares me to death. There, I said it. So I just shut it all out and live in my own little dreamworld because it's easier that way, I don't have to be focused or always happy there, or have my shit together...
I guess we really are all doing our part, bringing our own stuff to the table. Some of us bring words and pictures and imagination, and sometimes even sadness (okay a lot of times). And then there are others who bring their own stuff like clear heads and happiness and motivation. So in all reality we pretty much balance each other out when you think about it, or that's what I'm telling myself anyway... (yeah I know...)
So while I sit here and get a thrill out of kicking myself for not planning my life better or following through with any plans I might have actually made, I do know that it's not too late for a better tomorrow. Not too late to pay attention and stop dreaming so much, because those are things that I must do if I want to live the second half of my life with purpose and not fly by the seat of my pants like the last half. Because really, who the hell wants to be that sad 90 year old woman that sits around saying "I always meant to get my shit together"? 
P.S. I miss my dog...



Cranberries singing Linger
Coffee warms my bones
Different view outside my window
Autumn sets a brand new tone.

Sun is dancing in the trees out back, the rain is gone after two days of falling steady, making things feel melancholy and lethargic. I feel paralyzed on days like yesterday, not good, already prone to depression and sadness, being forced to sit inside always seems to leave me with nothing but reflection on everything and nothing at all.
But as always, the sun shows it's pretty head again and so does my spirit. Today I surround myself with the things that mean so much to me, the things that I've so far unpacked and hung on these 4 walls or carefully placed just so on the windowsill. Things that I haven't laid eyes on since packing them away a year ago. Every picture and keepsake brings with it emotion, some happy some sad, but all are symbols of who I am inside and where I've been and they make me smile, just like old friends.
No regrets, no regrets, no regrets... only lessons learned. I am close to standing on my own, upright and without a crutch. Not quite there yet, but almost.


Role reversal

Tired of waitin'
on thin ice
rice paper walkin
to feed egos
the size of the sun.
Cat and mouse
it's all a game,
while the cat's away
they call my name.
Their indecision
leads to division
and eventually destruction...
No longer no longer no longer
will their choices
Realization that I am more
than someone's 2nd thought.
Eyes wide open to the fact that
I am more than
a matter of convenience.
Much more...
Roles reverse now -
I am the cat
they are the mice
don't think twice,
it's my game now
and I won't play nice.


hearts overflowing

My god I love this boy and girl. 
I have made it a point not to write often about my family and friends, as to respect their privacy, but when I got this picture tonight it just made my heart so happy and I had to share...
As a single mom for the majority of life with my daughter I was riddled with guilt and doubt every day, was I doing things right or wrong or okay. Was I scarring and traumatizing her by giving her everything she needed but not much of what she wanted, not that she ever asked for much because that's certainly not the case. 
Such a good girl she was, not giving me fits over this or that, anything and everything, like I've seen some children giving their parents. And anyone who's known me for an extended amount of time knows what a run for their money I gave my parents...
but not this girl
"It's okay Mom" was her daily mantra when I would have to change plans because of work, or tell her that we had to move again for one reason or another, or when I cried and apologized for speaking much too harshly at her. She has been the one constant shining star in my life from the very second she made her arrival here on earth... 
My heart has always overflowed with love for her, as it has for my grandson of 6 1/2 years, and if I'm fortunate enough will do for any children of his. And I see her heart overflowing with love for him and know that this really is what life is all about, we have come full circle and it is good...


a bird with a french fry, now that's pretty damn nice...


The past year has been one of transition and transformation. I went from having everything to having nothing at all and thinking that it would kill me to be left standing naked and cold in a pretty harsh and unforgiving world. I wasn't strong enough to take things day by day, it was more a matter of minute by minute, and all I could think of was where the hell I would be in a year and that it couldn't come fast enough. Logically I knew I would get through it all, (what doesn't kill you.... right?) but my heart wasn't able to follow the bouncing ball and sing along. Losing a marriage (as shitty as it was), a home, a job, leaving all of the beautiful friends I'd come to love over the years, and let's not even talk about my ever faithful dog - was the hardest thing I've ever been through. And let me tell you, I've been through some stuff...
But I did it... I packed up my car, the only thing left to my name, with pretty much just the clothes on my back, and headed home, driving down that freeway just like one half of Thelma and Louise...
So many different ways to describe what home really is, but it's pretty simple when you think about it isn't it? It's that familiar place in your heart and in your life where you go to feel good again, a place where you feel loved and supported and can trust that it's okay to fall apart because those people who love you and support you will be there to help you pick up the pieces. Isn't that really what home is?
So here it is, almost one year later, and I was so busy being happy, and loved, and supported, that I didn't even realize how much time had passed since walking away from everything. Here I am still standing, and standing taller and stronger and more beautiful than ever before in my 44 years. Here I am, still with nothing but the clothes on my back. but feeling happier than I ever felt in the past decade and a half when I had everything.
So really, I have the last laugh when I think about it. Being happier than ever before - with nothing left to lose, nothing left for anyone to take away, except the knowledge that I AM GOOD ENOUGH and always have been.
Now ain't that somethin'?


note to self

What does it mean when you only allow yourself to love or desire the unlovable, undesirable, unattainable, unrecognizable, unavailable...? What do you do when it's been that way since the day you were born and you only just now realize it? How is it that you have let your life become that of  "one of those women" whom you loathe, who think that's all they're worth, whether consciously or sub-consciously? Why do you always pass up every single solitary thing that is good and right and healthy and beautiful, all for the opposite of such. Why must you lead your own self down the road to nowhere and nothing every single minute of your life. 


Do you cling to what you can never have as a way to cling to emptiness, all things sad and miserable? Because it's in that sadness that you find beauty, in some fucked up kind of way? Or is it so you can continue to feel sorry for yourself every time you get the same screwed up results from the same screwed up choices?

Just an F.Y.I. you stupid stupid girl... There is beauty in all things, INCLUDING happiness. It is okay to love the lovable, desirable, attainable, recognizable, available.... Go on, give it a go, can't hurt you more than you've already hurt yourself now can it?



As I sit here with the windows open it occurs to me that something's burning somewhere... Hard to tell really, when you live in the country, whether it's someone burning a pile of scrap wood or if someone's house is on fire. The scent of wood in flames takes a free ride on every little breeze.
Then I start to think about a comment someone made on my facecrack page today in response to my status regarding not really caring for the single life any longer. She said that sometimes you have to tear off the burnt skin in order to start healing with better skin. Funny how a simple statement like that can carry such meaning.
For the longest time I've felt like something just isn't right in my world, blaming it on everything I could think of from too many hours at a shit job that I hate to not having a consistent person in my life to come home to and share with... But really, now that I think about it, I've been living in "burnt skin" all this time, never tearing it away to allow new skin, healthier and prettier skin, to take it's place. I've been holding my breath, looking away from my reflection in the mirror, retreating into a shell of myself more and more every day.
Time to breath and surface and look into my own eyes again. time to finally let the skin heal...


state of mind...









seasons of life

Lately I've been thinking a lot about the seasons of life... this is a little something I wrote last year. Paired with a Black-billed Cuckoo bird it now canvases the middle of my back. The words have so many different meanings for me, turmoil to peace, depths of depression to contentment, new beginnings and starting anew, stagnation to really living...

Catatonic state of winter
It's grip has seized my soul
Frustration, no motivation
Smiles take flight
As this haze of irritability sets in...
The constant voice of sleep 
Grows louder and louder
As it screams my name
from behind the curtain of life
How much longer must I be
Imprisoned by it all?
Come Spring
Breathe new life into this soul of mine
To writhe in Winter's painful grasp
Is more than I can bear...




A room with a different view...

Settling into another room with a different view, all wrapped up in a girly-girl comforter and sunshine yellow sheets made by Seventeen. I fell asleep as soon as my head hit the ruffles and softness, and I slept better than I've slept in a long long time.
Living in the country, breathing in fresh air and showering my face with sunshine, laundry on the line and the faint sound of a radio somewhere playing Gretchen Wilson's Redneck Woman and it makes me smile. Does it really get any better than this?
After growing up, for the most part, in a small town of 3000 people (there was one high school for three  towns) and then moving to the city when I was 20, I always said that I would never live in the country again -given the choice, until I was old and ready to settle down. Guess I'm old and ready now, can't imagine why anyone in their right mind wouldn't choose peace and quiet over rush and noise. In the city you can't hear yourself think, nor can you breath because of the smog, and people are constantly running into you with no apology on the crowded roads and sidewalks. But not here, not in the country. There's no rush to get anywhere fast, all of those things on the to-do list will still be there tomorrow, we get there when we get there.
This morning I sat on that girly-girl comforter and stared out the window for the longest time, thinking of everything and nothing at all. Thinking of how far things have come since last November when my marriage fell apart. Most of you who know me would probably say that it fell apart way before that, but that's when it officially became a reality and that I would soon be forced to walk away from almost everything I loved and had worked incredibly hard for.
I went from looking out my own bedroom window to this one, and many others in between, giving me different views of the world outside, a world that's tough on a soul at times, easy at others.
Life is gradually moving in a much better direction, it took a little longer to get here than I would have liked, with me going a little crazy here and there, but here I am regardless. Last November all I wanted to know was where I'd be in one year, and as that year draws closer with every passing day I can see that although I don't know exactly where I'm going, wherever I end up will find me stronger and more indpendent than ever before. Hoo-ha!
I am woman, watch me do the happy dance like it's no one's business and shake it like I just don't care! 



Things sure can change in the blink of an eye can't they? Who would have known this would be the last picture I would ever take at his house.... Impalas are my favorite car, imagine my surprise when I spotted this out back. I'll miss that place, and I'll miss him, it was short-lived but beautiful, for the most part.


I miss her....

I have been missing my daughter something awful lately and hate not having the option to visit with her for even short periods of time. She and her family are still up north but are planning to move back here in the fall, which makes it a little easier to deal with, but I miss her terribly none the less.
I had a dream last night that we were together and leaving our home. We packed up all of our worldly belongings in a ton of luggage and headed toward the airport late at night. She was only about 15 years old and for some reason I had to leave her in the lobby of the airport because I forgot something important and had to go back for it, when I walked out the door I turned around to look at her one more time and a terrible sadness struck me to see her sitting there all alone with all of our baggage.
I felt rushed to get back to her from wherever I was and it felt like it was taking me forever, I worried that she would be panicking and not know what to do without me there if someone tried to come and take our things.
I'm sure that could all be interpreted in any number of ways, but the bottom line is that I miss her and she misses me and she needs to hurry up and get on home to her Momma. End of story....
Nicole, if you're reading this, this picture is for you, I took it this morning when the dew was still on the ground and was thinking that seeing it would have made you smile.
Love, your Momma


Hidden treasures...

 Today I'm feeling so blessed, as the whole world on Facebook already knows lol So many awesome friends and family, and the new love in my life that has my head spinning, in the best way, from sun up to sun down and back again. Went out to the garden to take pictures for Jan this morning, who has poured her heart into this plot of land with beautiful results, and look who I found hiding in her garden! What a little sweetie he was just sitting there stuck between two pots, poor guy. But he's none the worse for wear and probably napping in the shade with all of his brothers and sisters right now as I type this. My god, how can anyone resist that sweet little face?!
M'kay, I really hate to state the obvious, but damn it's hot out there! I don't think the humidity could possibly get any higher than it is, I swear even my hair starts sweating not even 5 seconds out of the shower, this is the one thing I did NOT miss when I was up north, well that and creepy crawly critters, I could definitely do without those too, but I suppose it's a small price to pay for being home...
Hope y'all are finding ways to stay cool and having a great week, only one more day and then it's the weekend, but of course that would be stating the obvious again wouldn't it? lol



I think I'd like to try posting daily photo or two again, like I used to on my old blog. I made it almost a year with a daily photo and then petered out, apparently struggling seriously with commitment phobia back then when it came to any kind of on-going project! But it's a new day and a new life and starting over means making my own new rules to live by, never mind that they are subject to change on a continuous basis...

This time of year there is newness all around, which means an abundance of subject matter where my camera is concerned, looking forward to seeing what eye candy I can find on the daily.

New wild grapes on the vine

New litter of pups means cuteness and curiosity are never lacking