December 24, 2016

Sad Day

Sitting by the campfire, as we took over June Lake Resort! What a Joy.
My husband's Uncle passed away in his sleep this morning.

He had been battling cancer for nearly a year.He had just turned 80 and decided to forego to the treatments and live life! And he did.

He was surrounded by loving family as he passed peacefully in his sleep early this morning.

You will be missed Uncle Francis, you will be missed.

We loved you very much.

December 22, 2016

Best Christmas Gift Ever

Spent the weekend in paradise. Oh my god, what a healing it was for my spirit.

I went up early in the day, spent some quality 'alone' time, surrounded by trees, mountains, quiet.

Watching the gust of wind play with the surface of the lake.

A good friend brought a bottle of wine in the afternoon. We sat on the southern exposure deck, shared some tales and laughs, good wine and chocolate. We watched the gusts of wind hitting the water of Lake Shasta as it traveled down the canyon. We were warm and cozy, sheltered by the house and mountain behind us. She headed home just before dusk.

Sunset does seriously tempt one to come out and play.

I sat on the deck and watched the shadows grow longer and longer; the mountains clothed in their sunset finest. Once the sun dropped below the western mountains, the temp dropped to about 40 degrees, so I wandered back into the gorgeous house.

Sunsets were beautiful but the temperature drops just as fast as the light.
My husband rarely, if ever, gets a day off of work during the Christmas season. He works seven days a week, 10 to 12 hour days from November 1 until Christmas day. He does get Thanksgiving day off (supposedly) but he is actually working on ads and Black Friday price changes on the computer most of the morning and again in the evening after dinner.

He actually got Sunday off. He said he was ordered to take it off because he was getting a little snarky!  Yay for Snarky.

He joined me on Saturday evening.

We stayed until Monday morning and left with completely renewed spirits. He is not snarky and I have my sanity back (mostly, on both counts).

The house was beautifully decorated for Christmas. The tree was cut fresh and filled the air with that wonderful pine scent.

Friends came up and shared dinner with us and stimulating conversation.

View from deck. Oh, did I mention the hot tub!

What a view.
 Looking up from my Kindle to this view was really breaking into my reading. I might have read the several paragraph over and over several times!

Surrounded by glass in dining room.


Can't wait to return. Even the food and wine tasted better in the peacefulness of the mountains.

December 16, 2016

It's Time

The line has been drawn.

Woke up at 3:00 a.m. (again), let the dogs out, cried, let the dogs back in, cried some more.

Absolutely could not wake up to wish Frank a good day but was wide awake 20 minutes later. Wrestled with the idea of staying in bed all day while I cried or if I should just get up and cry while I made my juice.

Let the doggies back out, still crying.

It's been a hard two years. I'm tired.

Time to return to the therapist.

The last round with her (maybe 4 years ago) she said I was a kick-ass warrior.

Well, this warrior's ass is being kicked. I'm calling the game because I am so tired of faking it, and, frankly, rubbing Preparation H on my eyes so I don't look like a cream puff is getting old.

Back to the therapist, which means closing down Wandering and Wondering for a little while longer. I don't want my posts to be downers. I want to bring smiles to your faces or to inspire readers to think.

Wishing you all a merry, merry Christmas, Winter Solstice, Yule, Jul, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, Hogmanay, Chalica (oops, sorry for being late on that one, hope it was good for you). Most of all wishing you a happy and glorious new year.

December 14, 2016

Procrastination List

In spite of the rain and wind, it's going to be a busy day. My to-do list is a mile long all shoved onto an 8 x 11 sheet of paper. Staying true to my nature to procrastinate, I thought I would hop around the net and see what friends are up to. Lists were made to wait, right?

I discovered that Susan at Color Me Writing has a busy day scheduled but is procrastinating in much the same way I am. On her procrastination journey she visited Carole at Carole Knits and found a fun list of letting friends know what's up.

Call me a copy cat but I'm going to join them in What's Up!

Drinking: Fresh ginger and green tea.

Reading: Non-violent Communication: A Language of Life by Marshall Rosenberg but seeking a really good novel. Anyone read The Little Paris Bookshop by Nina George? Yum.

Watching: My Rex and Lilly run around the backyard trying not to get their feet wet in the rain!

Listening: Mumford and Sons channel on Pandora

Knitting:  Sorry, Carole, no knitting here, but I am sewing a quilt (on the list).

Planting:  Goals for 2017. Get my studio back in order now that the grandkids have gotten their own home. Back to writing minimum of 2 hours a day. Paint guest room. Paint bedroom.

Buying: Yeah, that's right, remind me of the list!  Wrapping, ribbon, bows, a Dutch Bros coffee (I can hear it calling my name), a really good fingernail polish, some bubble wrap and a couple of shipping boxes. Maybe, if no one is looking, I'll slip in an Almond Joy!

Dropping: Really, really trying to ease my fear of the next four years. My New Year's Resolution might include investing in several cases of Jack Daniels and Captain Morgan to self-medicate myself through the nightmare of a Trump presidency.

Wrapping:  Nothing, hence the shopping list.

Anticipating:  My son and his family's visit after Christmas. my trip to Grand Canyon and Yosemite with girlfriends, shopping trip to Ashland with friends, spending Christmas day with my parents.

Baking:  Really? Got a couple of logs in the woodstove, does that count?

Have a great day, friends. Let us know what you're up to.

December 13, 2016


Do you listen to Ted Talks? Most are quite enjoyable and educational; some are just ehh!

Yesterday my email turned up with a couple of links to Talks inquiring the listener (or potential listener) to contemplate the question, "What did you learn about yourself in 2016?"

To be honest, I didn't listen to any of the videos, but the question got me thinking.

Did I discover anything about myself in 2016?  What DID I discover about myself in 2016? 

While ruminating, something may come to mind and I ask myself, "Self, is this a newly discovered trait or did you already know of it?  Is this a true strength or weakness or just a momentary rise or fall?"

Honestly, I discovered that I am a lot tougher than I thought I was. I can physically work harder than I thought I could. I discover I a vulnerability that I was totally aware of.

I discovered that my brother thinks I am the 'village idiot' because our president-elect scares the crap out of me.In spite of the my vulnerability, I discovered that being called the village idiot for speaking my mind doesn't hurt at all. In fact, I may get it tattooed on my ass right next to the 'kiss this' tat!

I discovered that I love my parents more than I ever knew I could. I discovered that I really like silence and stillness.

I discovered that there is a whole lot I don't know about a whole lot! I discovered that I can dance better than I thought I could. I discovered that I truly miss having a good old vanilla malt every now and then. I discovered that I love 805 beer, and that I was just fooling myself when I thought I liked lima beans, Lima beans suck!

There are still 18 days to search my inner workings for more but once 2017 gets here, it's going to be about learning new things and going on new adventures.

What have you, my friends, discovered about your selves in 2016?

December 04, 2016

'Get A Little Help From Our Friends'

Hi everyone! Been awhile and I really, really missed you all, though I have to admit that I did occasionally lurk around your blogs. I know, 'shame on me!'

Over the years of writing this blog, I have had visitors from every continent. I know that people from other countries actually read some of my posts and respond (thank you). So, today, I'm writing to ask you all a favor. Big favor.

The United States has been a powerhouse in international relations. We stand up on our mighty righteous soapbox, though lately it is showing some wear and a tad bit of dry rot. We make demands, impose sanctions, justify blockades.

Of course, all of our actions are totally justified...just ask us! Almost every sanction is rationalized (no matter what the back story is) with "human rights violations"! Yeah, that would be us, protecting the distressed and exploited from foreign tyrants.

Except in our own land. You see, we, Americans are really screwed up; not so much individually but as a group. We have treated each other (and some of you) in the most deplorable manner.

I'm sure many of you have heard of the Dakota Access Pipeline Protest. If you have heard or read about the protest than you are surely aware of the Dakota Access Pipeline Abuses. Incredible abuses.

You don't need a history lesson to know that we, as a government, and even some of our more soulless citizens have abused, slaughtered, incarcerated and pretty much committed every human rights violation there is. We don't tell you about it because we are different from some of you other countries. Our freedom of speech is a little bit of a myth. In some of your countries, if you speak out about the abuses, some soldier or policeman slams you up against a wall, yells out to the crowd that you were talking too much and shoots you. In America, we get hit by trucks or get arrested for some sort of deviant behavior that we really never knew existed.

So, back to my favor. I am asking you to put your own sanctions on us. Don't come here on your next vacation. If you already bought the tickets and made the reservations, cancel them. Don't stay at American owned hotels in Europe or Asia or Africa. Write to your government and tell them you are sick of the way America is abusing these peaceful protesters. Demand that your government demand that we stop. Don't purchase anything manufactured in the United States (though you would be hard pressed to find such a product). Don't buy our wines, our whiskey or our corn (I've heard that France has some pretty decent wine, Ireland produces excellent whiskey and corn is truly over-rated).

Help us help ourselves. Demand that we stand up to what we preach.

Thank you!