Monthly Archives: March 2011

Wordless Wednesday: In Utah Sky


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I’m still trying to take it all in.  It might be a bit before I have the words.  How wonderful it was to travel.  How amazing it was to be carefree, to rest, to relax into a slow pace.   How easy it was to be with him.  How beautiful it was there.  How much deeper things have gone.   How much I think I learned about myself and my life in just five days.  Each of these is a post in itself.  I’m sure it will be coming.


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roller coaster ride.

{looking forward to some reading during flight time}

It’s been a bit of a roller coaster ride this week, physically and mentally. Daily life has been busy, two of the three of us have been plagued by mysterious stomach ailments and then there is the trip, and on top still fighting off the cold.

Thursday I leave for Colorado.  It’s a trip I’ve been counting down since the day he left in December.  85 days ago.  It seemed then an unbearable amount of time to go without seeing each other.  A very depressing amount of time.  Difficult to lose someone for twenty years, find them for eleven days and then they are gone again.  But somehow we’ve made it and 48 hours from now, I will be there.

I am excited.  Beyond excited.  Excited to have this time to spend with him.  Excited to have this time for us to be alone.  Excited that I will actually have four full days without the responsibilities of work, motherhood, household.

But right now I am tired.  Tired.  Tired from the responsibilities of work, motherhood and household.  Tired from preparing myself and my home for this trip.  Tired from worrying about whether the girls will be okay, thinking what if something goes wrong with them or with myself.  And so today I have asked him, only half-jokingly, if it is okay if I just sleep curled up next to him for the first 24 hours.

The girls seem fine, quite excited actually that Grandmom (my mother) is coming to stay for five days.  My mother is quite content that everything will be fine, but I have NEVER been away from these girls.  This is the mother who agonized over the divorce and not being there to watch over on Wednesday nights and Saturdays.  So for me, there is a bit of stress over leaving them at home.  (I won’t go into the letters I’ve written them in case something should happen to me).

But again, part of this journey is about me.  About me finding myself, my happiness and part of my happiness right now lies in Colorado.  Part of my journey is about seeing where this road is leading, and some of that needs to be explored between the two of us.

So right now feels like a roller coaster.  And in two more days, I imagine it’s going to feel a bit like bliss.

And then I’ll be home and we’ll start the countdown again.


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{these beautiful gifts from my daughters, are all the gifts i need}

Yesterday was one of those days I realize how lucky I am.  I am surrounded by so many people who love and appreciate me for who I am.  It was my birthday yesterday, two cakes over the course of two days at work, the one I posted yesterday was a three-layer chocolate cake my friend Karen made and then one of our members at the credit union brought another, a citrus-y yellow cake I’ll share tonight.  Everyone at work made my day special.  A couple of our members sang  “happy birthday”, including a duet by 70 somethings Mr. and Mrs. Rice.  One of our members, one of the firefighters, offered to dance for me.  I politely declined.  I love these people who surround me everyday Monday-Friday.  Somedays, like most everyone else, it is hard to get up and get out the door, but really, these people that I work with and serve are delightful.  I have had a lot of jobs, but by far this is the best one yet.

Facebook messages went on for pages, a card from my best friend, a card and delightful gift from Lisa and then on my birthday, a card from Debbie all the way from England and it arrived ON my birthday, I look forward to a new project with her in May.  Ed’s card arrived in the afternoon, certain to make me cry.  Tonight the celebration continues, McKinney style at my Mom’s, which means, taco salad fixings and Coronas with limes spread out  across the tables, our standby meal for when we all get together.  My sister and brother both there, along with my grandparents, and my brother’s friends.  This will be a joint party as it has been pretty much off and on for the last twenty-four years, when my brother came along fifteen years and five days behind me.  I love to share birthdays with him.

In the past I knew I shared my birthday with my cousin’s ex-husband and my really scary middle-school English teacher, but found out last night I also share my birthday with that amazing force called Queen Latifah, love her and all her beautiful energy and drive, her celebration and success at doing things her own way and succeeding. Have always loved her not more so when she starred in one of my favorite books ever, turned movie.

Last night the girls made their appearance finally in the school variety show.  I love the girl’s school, it’s principal, it’s teachers, their enthusiasm and dedication, I could not buy an experience any better for them.  Weeks and weeks of practice three times a week paid off as their performance was flawless, though it didn’t matter as all those children standing on stage, in elementary school, putting their growing talents out  for all to see, wowed me in a way that reminds me to have courage.  There was no lack of support as the entire family turned out, the girls applauded and hugged and kissed by not only both their parents, but their full load of grandparents and great-grandparents as well.

I hugged the girls, commended their friends, talked with other parents, my own family and walked out into a balmy evening with no coat, going home finally to a glass of wine and  the last conversation with Ed on the phone, him being here the only thing that could have made the day any better.  In five days I will finally step on the plane and celebrate another birthday, his, with him.

I am blessed.  Beyond measure.  I keep reaching outside myself to find greatness when all I have to do is look around me and see that it all lies right here in a life so full and rich, who could ask for more.  Or as Queen Latifah says in that favorite movie, “there’s love all around you, don’t ever be afraid, WE are enough”.


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the last year of my thirties begins today.



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a different kind of spring fever.

{the girls picking cherries, at the old house, right before we moved}
(ages four and six)

The sun is shining today.  I am ouside with no coat.  As I walk out the door at the VA hospital on errands for work, I swear for just two seconds I can smell Spring and so look up and see that there are not only buds on the massive trees  lining the buildings, but actual baby leaves starting to burst forth.

Spring is coming.  There is something special about this time when Spring comes and the green starts pushing it’s way back into the world.  It feels like hope and renewal.  It feels like a fresh start, but still, each Spring  as the weather warms and we look to spend more time outside, I realize there are things I am missing.

There used to be a time when Spring came and I was a married woman and we would make our bi-annual trips to the nurseries.  You see there was a time when we were happy and when we did things together.  My old husband at one time was a very hard worker.  He would work sixty plus hours a week at the restaurant and then come home and Sundays we would plot the outside.

We were newly married.  We didn’t have kids yet.  So we would wake up to the sunshine.  The windows would be open, a breeze would blow through.  We would find ourselves starting the morning with HGTV and This Old House and then we would start plotting on graph papers, hoppimg in the car to buy plants, working side by side out in the yard pulling out scrub, putting in new soil, depositng new plants with all the hopes that they would flourish as we hoped to.  Roses, hydrangeas, butterfly bushes, succulents, berry plants. This wasn’t work, this just was.  We would work outside until it would threaten to get dark, then fire up the grill.  I would run inside, rinse the muck off, start a few things and we would sit out on the porch and eat.   Then go inside to shower and crash for the evening, maybe running back out in the dusk to put a few things away, perhaps I would find him, tooling out in his shed after the day had closed.

Even right after Emily was born, she would go out with us, bobbing up and down in one of those exercise saucers as we raked leaves, sitting on a blanket chewing on a pumpkin as we mixed in fall chrysanthemums or some clearance end of summer perennials bought on the cheap.

In time all that changed.  As his back broke, our relationship did as well.  The yard and our life fell to ruin.

Today I have a new home, leaving all of that hard work and ruin behind and I would have free reign to do it all again here.  But I don’t ever turn on HGTV anymore. I have no passion to work in the garden.  It’s just there  is never enough time, enough money or enough energy.  I’m barely fitting it all in now, the daily requirements, figuring how to factor in the budget summer camp and karate lessons, energy being at an all time low.

These days I kill all the plants I try to nurture. There may be a few strawberry plants eeking out a life under the winter’s weeds behind the garage.  The herbs I planted in pots on the porch last year suffered neglect and finally gave up.  I miss having a partner in these ways. There are things that I miss about being part of a pair.  I miss lazy mornings and my Better Homes and Gardens landscaping books.  I miss scoping out last minute end of summer perennials. I miss the satisfaction of bringing color and beauty to my surroundings. More than anything I miss late evening dinners out on the porch with someone I love, dirt still in my fingerprints.

Life marches on.


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Wordless Wednesday-Please Rain, Bring Something Good

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