Sunday, December 13, 2009

It's been a while since I've written, but carrying on the theme of change I have.

The little silver bullet Subie WRX wagon grocery getter, Monza mobile has been replaced with a truck. Yes, a truck. My first. It's proving to be a good decision of independence as I slowly get it to the way I want. Meanwhile, the Subie sits in the other heated garage stall having a well deserved break.

Today is get the tree day and instead of strapping it to the roof of the Subie or borrowing a truck, it'll christen the bed. For the past few years, I've borrowed a dog to take with and I reminisce of last year with Cash thinking it was so very cool to check out all the trees and people at Meisters.

I've been walking a lot lately at the rinks. This morning was the Lakeview Arena. What a change from the horrifically hot Berry. In fact I had to pull my sleeves over my hands this morning, which brought a smile as that's the way a real rink should be. It even smelled a little like ice. Mmmm...

After being ill for about a month starting with the flu, I wrapped up sickness with doing Thanksgiving dinner at my house. So Christmas festivities will be at my mom's. It's Grandpa's birthday on Christmas. Another year! I'm thinking for his birthday gift, I'm going to get a couple of NMU hockey tickets and we'll go sit by the Rail of Knowledge by Johnnie and the gang.

My holiday cards arrived from Apple. It was while making them that I realized I didn't take many pictures this year. This year was not the best overall, but I am making plans for a wonderful 2010. You too?

Sunday, October 4, 2009

I tend to do better with change than stagnation.

Fall and Spring are my favorite seasons, perhaps.  They are such a mix.  Each day can be a blended concoction!

The work duty modifications are supposed to be coming soon.  Last week I was told retro-pay would be on my next check and the job description is still in approval process.  How unusual is that?  I have always been on the short end of getting all of the duties and the work and hearing someday the pay would catch up.  In the last job, that meant almost two years later.  I've always thought of myself as an impatient person, but looking back at everything, maybe I'm not.

I pinch myself on occasion.  I am doing professional tasks to which I have a passion.  More often than not, I am satisfied.  How can this be possible?  Is it because I have lived through so much dissatisfaction that I have a good thermometer?  So many adventures in life that when I briefly introduced myself this past weekend while teaching EMS classes, I said these are the professions I'm doing today.  

Incapsulate those with my past-times and it makes me wonder how a one job, one hobby, routine person survives.  Certainly if one has a family, that provides the interest, the opportunities for expanded horizons - the change.

Considering putting my name out there to play for weddings, funerals, and gatherings as I used to do in a previous life.  :)  Not only would it provide a little extra play money, but I am discovering that once in a while using your passions to help your whole life isn't sacrilegious...and it provides a safe, yet needed stimulating change. 

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

I tend to be a giver...of all...

To receive total random acts of kindness leave me speechless.

Yesterday, a person took off a bracelet and just gave it to me because she noticed that it matched my necklace.

Today, a person that works somewhere down the hall, gave me a beautiful bouquet of my favorite pinks and purples...from her garden. I don't even know her name.


So thankful.

So blessed.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Andrew Warhola.

The most well known artist of all times as he transcends ages and our adulthood, stereotypical categorizations of people.

Over this past weekend, more than once I would ask or think of something and POOF it happened.  We laughed about how I asked for someone to speak Polish because we needed to convey a clear message to our Polish teams.  In walked a Polish interpreter.  Tonight, I pushed myself out of the hotel in Milwaukee and instead of going to Jazz in the Park, as that was part of the conference's dinner and entertainment, walked many blocks to the waterfront and the Art Museum.  I heard Andy Warhol was opening here, but unfortunately privately to members only.  Thinking I might be able to see their standing collection and secretly hoping the stars would align again, I ventured over there.  Their fountains and the architectural wonder of a building is currently robed in passion pink in honor of the Susan Koman race this weekend and Andy Warhol.

A breeze off Lake Michigan continued while the articulating wings of the museum closed.  Captured on video.

Upon entry, I discovered many people milling about with a variety of beverages and appetizers.  Asking if I may stay even though not a member, I was welcomed for just a smidge above normal entry fee.  Additionally, I had arrived just in time to receive a ticket for their limited seating lecture by a visiting, renown curator.  Some appetizers, a flavorful pan-seared tilapia, and Summer Shandy later and I was ready to explore.

The pieces.

His last ones.

Andy Warhol is the epitome of contradiction.

Perhaps of no surprise to you, I relate.

In his final years, he was working around the clock on a multitude of pieces.  More graphic and poppish, totally abstract, and also quietly religious.  Andy was a devout Catholic and that was extremely unknown with the exception of a few of his closest friends until openly announced at his eulogy. 

His self-portraits through the years reflected how he saw himself first cleanly and young to confused and aging.

The year preceding his death, he lost his best friend, a fellow artist, to whom he shared and journeyed professionally and personally.  The man did not die.  The artist was introduced as his mascot during an unveiling and from that awful day forward, with the exception of a phone call once in a while, they were no longer bonded.  He was devastated.

It's been an interesting week.  As you know through prior blog entries, I am the combination of two opposites.  Last weekend, truck romping in Colorado at a race; this week, in Milwaukee appreciating the arts and the smells of a very fine spice store.


Seek it.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

The Tundra performed powerfully on its evening trip from Steamboat to Denver through the mountains.  It had a stick on the column with up/down auto shifting.  Convenient and perfect placement with elbow propped on center console.  Appreciated its soft reddish - orange instrument glow, but the terribly distracting high beam indicator needs a piece of dental x-ray film.

I made my flight in the nick of time!  I am a planner - thank goodness.  Auto-awake at 0416 on Monday to think I have an alarm and wake-up call set, I can sleep until 0430.  The front desk called at 0458 and asked if I was going to make the 0500 shuttle to the airport?  Ahhh - do you have a 0515?  No.  Glad I was packed and have years of experience flying out of bed when the pager alerts.  I was on the shuttle at 0502 and that includes being on the 3rd floor.

Flew home rather uneventfully.  I remember taking off and touching down.  :)

It was totally wonderful to crash at home for the evening.  Your own bed and pillow are sometimes inexpressibly good.

My rental car fiasco yesterday morning at Enterprise made me look around thinking there is a hidden camera and I'm on a businessman blooper show.  While receiving a text message from a friend saying he's missing his radio antenna from his rental (rented at the same place), I am told the car that I specifically requested be held for me less than 30 minutes previous to my arrival is no longer available.  This is Marquette, not O'Hare, and then he started with the I'm not required to hold a specific vehicle.  I reminded him of the conversation the two of us just had moments previously.  I believe this is where he picked up that I'm not a first time car renter because mine is in the shop for deer damage.  He thought I would not know the difference between a Cobalt and a Focus?  When I requested the Mazda, he said it was rented.  Excuse me?  I sat outside to cool down.  Called Thrifty and told them how wonderful they are.  When a Sonata sporting a sat antenna drove up, I went in and waited in the wings.  Yes.  That one.  Took a picture of its odo and 1/4 tank of gas as he'll be getting it back with a 1/4 tank.

Don't screw with me.  Well, at least when it comes to wheels.

Speaking of those, I stopped at a Toyota dealership in Green Bay to discuss trucks.  Every question I had required a look-up or find someone.  At least this guy was somewhat resourceful.  I'm not a how many cup holders kind of gal.  Surely you're shocked.  Ha!

I'm at the Hyatt in Milwaukee now for a few days.  Nice place with a brilliant comp room equipped with a plethora of liquid - even Hennessy, single barrel Jack & Grand Marnier - and it's central to the arts.  I'll be doing the museum.  Warhol doesn't open until Saturday and that is such a bummer.  It's almost worth staying another evening.  Hmmm - maybe I'll do that?!

Living for adventure....we're only here once, at least in this form...  :)

Saturday, September 19, 2009

At Steamboat Springs and fighting altitude sickness ~ increased hydration last week just in case and yet still!  Now I think I should have gills.  It was noon my time and I was still sitting in my jammies drinking Gatorade.

Rally Colorado is a social event as much as a rally.  Beer festival weekend too.

Walking down the street today, it was apparent that when I was 10-12 years old I would have fit right in with my cowboy boots and flannel shirts.  Need to raid a men's store and get a couple flannels again.

The forecast has changed and it should be a very nice weekend.  This is why I always pack my rain gear for if not...

One who needs little sleep is whipped.  Night.

Monday, September 14, 2009

Heart glow...

I was just gifted the opportunity to share a little time with a 7 year old on the Pediatric unit. In passing, a person I work with mentioned how wrenching the situation is and how there is no one here for her. Woofed down lunch and ran up to be with her. No one could get the Wii to work. Cha-Ching ~ you called upon the right gal. :) I left her eating Cheetos and playing tennis.

Giving is so much more than receiving.

Heart glow...

Monday, August 31, 2009

A little Chinese year research on my birth...

I was born in the year of the Dog, which is part of the 3rd Trine. We are gifted in oration with relationships being our highest priority. Idealistic and impulsive with total defiance against injustice. We are loyal, yet watch out if lied to because there rears the very protective side. Not much for being told what to do, we will only listen to those we love or trust whole-heartedly.

Moving on, I'm a Yang Metal too. Years of birth ending in 0 are Yang and 1 are Yin. They're opposites ~ masculine and feminine, which is a good thing for we should all strive for balance. Combine two Yangs or two Yins and watch the fireworks (hmm - another item from that part of the world). Now, Yang is masculine, yet the Sign of Pisces is feminine, which bring us to duality...

Pisces is the sign of duality in personality and internal struggles as the two fish swim opposite. It is the last of the zodiac and for that reason have finely tuned intuition and spiritual development. Often referred to as having a sixth sense and the ability to perceive others. They are the "old souls." Although, they continue to thirst for knowledge and personal growth.

And here I thought it was all from being a product of a mechanic and an artist...

Friday, August 21, 2009

In days passed, my spirit of truth has been tested beyond all measure experienced. While enduring and reaching for my surviving nature, it now has become apparent how many so very subtle ways have been reflecting that yes, Lyn, you are on the correct path. You have trusted with all of your heart and not relied upon your own insight. (a remarkable milestone for strong-headed me)

Life is composed of choice.

One commonly asks why? Why am I here? Why am I going through this? Why chaos? Why do I want to run away from reality? Choice. Choice is what places you where you are. Faith is what provides you the gumption to pull up the boots and wade forth for with that you know you are also not alone. Determining what path you should wade requires discernment – a word that may be rare gem in today’s world. It is a piece that I must continually hone for it does not come easy.

So as times pass and you ask why, suggest bad luck and more - go back. Think of the forks on your paths. We are all on journeys. Shake yourself in pure silence…as oxymoronic as it sounds...because it can be enlightening.

Monday, August 17, 2009

Purposely keeping my life busy for now...

Today's Teddy quote says it all:
It is not the critic who counts, not the man who points out how the strong man stumbled or where the doer of deeds could have done them better.  The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena; whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs and comes up short again and again; who knows the great enthusiasms, the great devotions, and spends himself in a worthy cause. Who at best knows, in the end, the triumph of high achievements; and who
at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who know neither victory nor defeat.  -Theodore Roosevelt

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Dr. Ablow's which, I shout - BRAVO!

Great leaders and great political movements have a lot in common with the finest therapists and best psychotherapy:

1) They are relentlessly courageous about exploring that which might otherwise remain under cover—that which might otherwise be accepted as true without real inspection and understanding.

2) They practice a kind of quiet and reflective, yet insistent and intellectually piercing non-cooperation with liars and lies.

3) They are colorblind and blind to socioeconomic status. They see people as individuals with worthy thoughts and rich life stories, regardless of whether they are black or white, penniless or affluent.

4) They are non-violent, whenever any alternative exists, which it almost always does.

And finally, he states:
"The truth always wins—in public policy and in therapy."

Saturday, August 8, 2009

So not only were a couple of people right about my need for speed, but they also hit this nail:  I apparently need little sleep in comparison to most.  But, it's a cumulative matter because WOOFDA - enough becomes enough and I crash.  Sense a crash coming sa-sa-sa-soon.  I can literally fall asleep at the wheel, no, make that on the wheel.  Years ago, rescue call, fire assist, bored out of my mind, forehead on the steering wheel, someone had to stay with the truck, me, of course, next thing I knew, my forehead had an imprint.

Hanging with a variety of characters lately.  Adds some spice, some diversity.

The back, well, it's not the back - thank God!  Let's just say it's off to the "side" of the very lower back and well I can walk now.  As the week progressed, it became easier to get the clutch all the way in and that's a good thing for me and the grocery getter.  Now I just get muscle cramps every once in a while.  I'm looking at it as great, involuntary gluteal exercises.

Working another enduro bike race tomorrow.  It was a little dusty today and with no rain overnight it'll be a blow your nose for a while experience.  Dam* fugitive dust.

The Isle of Man TT DVD was watched a "few" times.  Actually, the sidecar part I've watched MORE than a few times.  Perhaps to the rescue swimmer, rodeo clown, goalie, the addition of monkey is necessary.  Watch a motorcycle sidecar race and you'll get the picture.

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Limping along. Don't know how this happened, but I have discovered why - butt muscles have twisted everything awry. Isn't that just the luck?! I used to have occasional visitors in the old office, not anymore. The phone hardly ever rings. That I suppose is good right now as I've taken to laying on the floor once in a while with a tennis ball under me pressing on muscles' trigger points.

I did absolutely nothing on Sunday because I could barely walk. I haven't a clue how people can lay around and watch tv for hours on end.

Doing whatever I can to stay busy and my mind occupied. Reminding myself that everything in life is ebb and tide. Trust in a power higher than thou and not rely on your own insight. One of these days, the sun will shine again.

Saturday, August 1, 2009

I've had a grand time staying in town with Sunni, the blonde, full-coated Golden Retriever.  We've walked along the Lake each day from near the Lakeview Arena to downtown and then all the way back north.  Those ions off that body of water along with the view - good gracious I am so thankful for being here.  

Last night we stopped at the Lower Harbor Marina to chat with friends.  They saw me coming and thought HOLY she finally got another dog.  Nope.  Stole yet another one.

The wind changed this morning.  Remembering what Grandpa always said about wind changes, I checked the horizon and YIKES!  We high-tailed it, well at least Sunni did, all the way back to beat the storm.  It's beautiful again outside so we spent a little time in the backyard for a grooming session.  She's now sound asleep on the kitchen floor.  I do believe I've been tiring her out.  Yesterday morning, I opened the kennel and she was still sound asleep.  We'll try for one more long walk today before I go home.

Two years ago just before Christmas in Target, I bought some window coverings and steel cable to hang them.  Beautiful, icy blue ones that would match the rest of the hint of blue and warm chocolate that I already had.  They've been sitting in the corner ever since.  A few years ago, I transitioned from purple and green to these colors.  Just ahead of the curve ball in popularity, perhaps?  Today's task is to finally put them up in the spare bedroom and complete the look with the comforter and linens that I've had stored.  Fifteen years later and I'm finally getting the place to look and feel like me:  cool and calm, modern with a slightly lodge-like twist.  You won't find a lick of oak and country soon.  If only I were on water, cathedral ceilings, open floor plan, huge windows and surrounded by rock.  I would love to build.  Oh - in my dreams...

I heard from a cousin out west that is moving back to Alaska!  Very, very cool since that is on my short list of places to go.  Alaska, Hudson Bay for the polar bears and New Zealand.

My professional life may take a twist soon, as though the personal life wasn't enough.  Everything happens for a reason.  I hope this to be a step in the positive direction, professionally, and will write more when I can.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Vacationing with Sunni for a few days! I'm going to be spoiled with the temporary relocation to town.

Monday, July 27, 2009

I went back to Art on the Rocks yesterday. Justification - I needed the exercise. ha! So off to it with a friend and her neighbor. Spent a little - just a little on jewelry - imagine that! A couple of pieces that go with things I already have.

Found my parking gate card this morning!!! There was no way I was going to pay the enormous amount of money for a replacement. I feared it ended in a bag that I threw away, but no the little monster squeezed itself under the amp under the passenger seat. In the meantime, my car is a bit cleaner than usual. You can see the seats! Now I just need to get all of the teeny copper Cash hair off of them. Oddly there isn't a piece of Mooch Landcruiser blonde fur. Which brings me to the next point, I'm seriously considering a dog again. That'll be another post for the future.

Looooooong day. Life is crawling lately. Today, I've been on fury mode and have completed many projects. Of course, I'm multi-tasking at the moment. Typing this, listening to EMS recorded reports and taking notes on those that need follow-up.

I finished second coating my china hutch last evening. I tore it apart the other night out of sheer frustration and needing something to do. One of the doors seems bowed now and I haven't a clue what that is all about? I changed out all of the hardware to nickel. Last night I looked at the ceiling fan and thought well maybe this evening I'll paint its blades the deep anthracite.

It's not that I relish doing all this stuff. You know, it is rather amazing what a person can do out of sheer necessity. I even used a shovel and disposed of some mice in traps last week. I have NEVER been able to do that, but after days of it nagging in my head and the smell of dead mice for way too long, I finally realized no one else was going to take care of it. Poof! Done.

Talk with you later.

Sunday, July 26, 2009

It's rainy and cold today.  Blaghhhhhhhh!

Briefly walked around Art on the Rocks yesterday.  I cannot have the temptation to spend any money so I'm limiting my focus and time on anything that makes me go down that road.

A friend of mine came to town - totally unexpected and what a wonderful surprise.  We spent time together yesterday and it was as though years had not passed.  Those unexpected things really punctuate life don't they?!

I finally caved and put myself on Facebook.  Too many people sending me requests.  The last time I caved like this, I ended up with titanium drilled in my leg.

Sandi's surprise retirement party was last weekend at L'Attitudes.  I love that place.  Their wine glasses are the best in town.  Right weight, no weighty lip.  Low, leather couches by the brick and windows facing the lake.  Natural wood.  High ceiling.  I could live there.  It's my style.  I hadn't seen Trina in a few years and DJ even longer than that.  Trina is in the Twin Cities staying home with the kids.  Sort of surprising.  DJ is living in Colorado - golf and skiing.  No surprise there.  :)

Mom's birthday was last week and the Longhini gang along with Gina and her Thursday liquid lunch gals all met at HotPlate.  We painted pottery dishes for my mom and she'll pick them up this Tuesday.  Sandi had a sun/moon, Gina and the gals made seagulls (it's their mascot), Dom & DJ worked together on a mountain peak landscape, and the rest were very nicely patterned.  My design?  There wasn't one.  Only freaking odd duck of the group.  I layered a passionate deep purple on top of scarlet base.  Then popped it with a feather brush of blue and sponged a tidbit of flare orange. Finished by flicking smile yellow off a brush that sprayed over the rest.  Yep - no neat pattern there.

Enjoyed a delish feta burger and Oberon atop the Landmark last night.  The woman's restroom up there - well, it's practically like an outdoor bathroom overlooking the lake.  I've always wanted an outdoor shower.  Wouldn't that just be the coolest?!!!

Off to a friends and then home.  Might even have a fire in the fireplace.  It is that icky outside.  I started cleaning my car the other day.  Still haven't found my car parking card to get in the work lots.  Ugh.  It's a day that I could bake and cook my heart out!  Find your creative release...

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Quotes say it all right now...

If you're going through hell, keep going. ~ Winston Churchill

Compassion is a call, a demand of nature, to relieve the unhappy as hunger is a natural call for food. ~ Joseph Butler

Many people will walk in and out of your life, but only true friends will leave footprints in your heart. ~ Eleanor Roosevelt

We must embrace pain and burn it as fuel for our journey. ~ Kenji Miyazawa

In the End, we will remember not the words of our enemies, but the silence of our friends. ~ Martin Luther King, Jr.

Every evening I turn my worries over to God. He's going to be up all night anyway. ~ Mary C. Crowley

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Mind and spirit whipped.  Took some time off from work to start sorting out my head.  :)

At a friend's bonfire late (I am a bonfire junkie) last night and then wide awake until mid-morning.  I cannot figure out why this bod never just sleeps in!  Wonder if I'll be able to catch the Madagascar Penguins on Nick?  Yes, I watch that cartoon whenever possible.  Just add that to the strangeness of my life.

Party at the neighbors today.  They are absolutely wonderful people.  I'm bringing grilled vegetables in balsamic, and I think I'll try Tiramisu.  I haven't used the trifle bowl yet so by happenstance I spotted ladyfingers at the grocery store.  Couldn't pass up one of those little Oberon party kegs.  Really - just for the picture on the outside.  ha!

Fireworks tonight.

I'll fit it all in one way or another.

Windows are open - there's a breeze through the freshly cleaned house.  Happy summer everyone.

Saturday, July 4, 2009

Look at the time!  Nope - not at Starbucks.  I found a temperamental, new sweet spot in the house!

I got burned today.  No, not literally - although that would make sense on this kind of holiday.  Actually last year this time I was doing everything I could to stop a person from burning himself along with calming their enraged neighbor.  Beverages and fireworks just don't mix.  Back to present time, I made plans to do things today and was thinking how cool finally a holiday that would be fun!  Rather excited that it was going to be a day that I enjoyed instead of always doing for others. Well, that fell apart.   Anti-climatic, I ate some chips and a few smoked oysters tonight.  Not even any beer in the house to go with!   Then fell asleep to the drone of a 24/7 jewelry sales tv channel.  Listened to the distant booms of fireworks earlier and I'm wide awake now - figures.

The bright spot of the day was being allowed to make lemonade from lemons as I borrowed Cash-Man-Du for the Dog Dash run/walk.  Look at me - do you honestly think I "dash" anywhere?  Apparently, Cash sees the world through pink-colored lenses because we did 2.5 miles in 34 minutes including two stops for him to do a little business.  Considering that I did some light jogging the morning previous (before 7am, I will add!), this fast walk escapade wasn't all that hip - though, that is what was the sorest.  There was a lot of commotion, other dogs, kids and more.  My gut said he wouldn't have an issue with any of that as he knows better than to try more than a sniff with me.  But just in case, we started last.  He motored right through them all with no hesitation and he made it crystal clear that he's not used to being last.  What a ham at the finish - his schmoozing surprised me!  We met a visitor to the area whose sister breeds Vizslas in New Jersey, including grand champions that she named.  Their family has always taken the ones her sister has not been able to immediately place.  She remarked on Cash's great looks and temperament and wanted to know where I got him....ahhh, I stole him.  :)  A very nice conversation about the breed ensued and then upon leaving she said thanks for bringing him, he enjoyed what you did.  What a kind gesture.

Now if I could get some zzz's, I might be able to get a brisk walk in tomorrow morning.  Tomorrow afternoon I have to work the rescue truck again at a local celebration.  Bringing a chair and there should be good live music.  Hopefully no lost children.  They always seem to find me.

Hope your summer celebration was a sweet one for you!

Sunday, June 28, 2009

There are users and givers in this world.  Teeter-totter. 

Somewhere in between is the person who gives, yet is attempting to understand there are personal needs and maybe those have to be filled or nurtured by others.  That kind of person isn't "using" others.   It's not greed-based or materialistic, as it truly is attempting self-care from within and in assistance from a support system.

It's been a stressful week that has provided many challenges to me.  The wanting to give while walking the fine line of enabling.  Being totally used and allowing myself to because I see a bigger picture amongst many walking veneers.  Supporting people, yet not their actions (talk about poke my ethics!).   And finally, as though that was not enough, providing literal life and death compassion to strangers.

I testify to you that you can, yes, you can, endure all that is handed or displayed before you...and with divine assistance, it can even be done with grace.

I have to go pick up some Lions Club chickie BBQ and then staff the rescue truck at a show.  Cutting cars - fabulous stress reliever.

Have a great week everyone.

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Happy Father's Day.

The disaster exercise wasn't a disaster!  WOOOO~WHOOOO!!!

When I was growing up - yes, yes, many still think I'm still attempting that - ANYWAY, coffee was not something kids enjoyed.  Can I tell you how many young kids are splaying cool cash for Starbucks?  A whole new generation of addicts.

Grandpa and I hit Forestville yesterday.  B-Utiful!  The sun was shining, a breeze filtered easily through the trees, and we took our time capturing the moment.  Grandpa gave me stories about the current road that was built by Roosevelt's WPA in the 30s and where the rut road remains are, along with where each overgrown trail leads.  He told me stories about certain trees up there.  Amazing memory, amazing man.  He found the spot of where an apple tree used to stand as he recalled the time a black bear, whose back stood above the ferns, came too close to the camp.  The black bear met its fate and was found later that year.  Hemlocks - pointed one of those out and said that was the main building timber, along with some white pine, for the houses he built in Marquette.  He said they're soft, perhaps too soft, but that's what people used.
We walked up Reiny Creek, felt its chillness, and searched for brook trout under the bridges.  I took pictures of Forget-Me-Nots and Buttercups.  At the top of the hill where Reiny joins with the river, we tromped around the "camp" where my grandparents and Mom lived for a couple of years.  The old stove, frying pan, and sink remain along with pieces of brick from the chimney that my uncle built for them.  He showed me where he would park their Model T.

The terracing by the house was built by Grandpa and one of his brothers because they wanted to drive and hauling the rocks gave them a perfect excuse.  I learned how tightly I held him as he would carry me across the main bridge because of the gaps in between to the river, and come to find out I didn't relish the sound of the hydro plant.   That surprised me since Mom talks about how I would sleep on the starting line during Dad's races.  Grandpa says his hearing isn't what it used to be.  This coming from the man who wouldn't wear hearing protection in the hydro plants.  He knew everything by its exact sound and could tell immediately if there was a problem and where.  When he brought up flying, I said, "you kept one ear uncovered to hear the plane, didn't you?"  Yes was the reply with a cheshire smile.

We found thimble and raspberry bushes just starting to bloom.  I ate a little carton of raspberries for dinner the other night.  Here's a quick and easy tip:  marscapone cheese on plain toast chips, topped with a raspberry.  Yummy and it looks fabulous.

It is another absolutely gorgeous day here.  Time to close my chat with you and sail around out there.

Sunday, June 14, 2009

It's a Frappuccino Caramel Light Day and you know what that means?  The sun is shining!

I made it out to St. Louis this morning and listened to Father Ben.  He just completed fire II class with the rest of us.  That church sure underwent a transformational change years ago, not only in structure but also in total feeling.  The old portion, which is now a gathering hall, is where my parents were married and where I was baptized and also received First Communion.  Mom made my First Communion dress of white eyelet fabric over a light blue sheath.  Since I stopped growing in 4th grade, you can only imagine that traditional little, poofy First Communion dresses - well, they weren't made for me.  Veil?  No freakin' way!  Ahead of my time with flowers.

So anyway, St. Louis is styled in a contemporary fashion now as it is in a round with natural wood beams and neutral colors interlaced with free design stained glass.  It has a down to earth, relaxed attitude about it and each time I pick up this unpretentious feeling from its parishioners.  

It's Chicken BBQ day and that means Grandpa bought tickets from Dr. Peura for a gathering at my parents' home.  I'm going to approach Grandpa about another trek through the Forestville woods as we did one last fall.  He's 90.  I want to capture his knowledge of the area again and jot it all down.  I'm not sure if going up the falls will be too much for him.  I'll make sure friends are in town should we get in trouble.  Knowing him, he's the mountain goat and I'll be the one sliding down a ravine.  With that in mind, I'll have to choose my friends wisely that day.  :)

Tomorrow is a large emergency exercise in Marquette that I hesitantly say I'm spearheading.  Core to my being is bringing people together of differing perspectives and this certainly has been a test.  It is tomorrow - tomorrow! - and here I sit with not enough victims.  Everyone could get people - yet, it's now Sunday and I'm trying to figure out how to pick up the pieces and make it work for everyone.  I yip at myself saying keep looking at the good!  There has been a plethora of discoveries along the way and we have already made great progress in changing things that make us more prepared for community emergencies.  It's all about the next patient, not one agency versus another, not existing polices and procedures, not the way it's always been done so that's why - period.

Gathered some agates yesterday with Cash-Man-Du.  He smiled.  I laughed.

Seize the moment.  I'm off...

Monday, June 8, 2009

Years ago when my office was a jail cell (complete with a big Folger keyed door that I would decorate with abstract paper cutouts and bars on a huge window with a view of a gorgeous pin cherry tree), I sat one rainy day and thought of this phrase:

Life is an orchestra.
Play on.

It's another challenging rainy day.

The sun will shine again.

Sunday, June 7, 2009

The week was quick and punctuated with a few experiences.

Sault Ste Marie, Menominee, Iron Mountain, Escanaba - amongst real work.  Bring it on!  The more I ride with others, the more I understand that perhaps I am a little bit of a speed demon.  See - you grow up in my family and you'd think I was slow.  Ahhh no.  Is that not just a prime example that you are a product, somewhat, of your environment where your perceptions of reality and opinions are molded?  Major life changing events are fertile ground for recasts, though.  Strong spirits constantly seeking betterment are like foundries with a variety of casts on the shelves and more being created.

I reflect upon my life and see so many traditional steps missing.  I wonder why I have been gifted to not experience the joy and tragedy of them for there is a reason.  I must not be ready to know.

So how 'bout those Wings?  While I don't have a "team" - I do appreciate downright good hockey.  Smooth, pretty passes followed by incredible saves and an occasional goal.  Yes, to me, that is the game.  Since a rather small child, I have been enamored by the person that stands in front of the goal.  It's the collection of traits the person must possess in order to exist there that just strikes me as they are found few and far between...when mixed with passion...a deep seated awareness of what is really important...and there, there you have a person that walks to the edge and lives.

It will be another hectic week...but, I say, only as hectic as I will allow.  Later.

Sunday, May 31, 2009

Noticing a trend?  Sunday @ Bucks - Starbucks, not Bucks in Ishpeming....geesh....

After much deliberation and a few slaps upside the head by a couple of friends (to which I admit and sincerely utter thank you), I took the fire exam.  As usual, I headed right to the car after the written and looked up all of the ones I thought I may have marked incorrectly.  The practical - well, I could crawl around on the floor by touch any day.  Mom said I never crawled, so I'm making up for it (the wheeled seat thingee was faster and I'm sure that is making a few of you laugh).  I somehow slammed my knee - the bad one - in the past week, though no one knew or could tell.  Took a few ibuprofens as the day began and those just make my body feel so fabulous that I could still be crawling around to help others.  If I hadn't been running behind on other projects, I would've stayed for the re-dos because I brought a 60 minute bottle and barely breathe unlike those huff and puff, blow the house down guys.

My overage box from the trip arrived the other day and I picked it up at my parents' shop this morning.  UPS never delivers to my home.  Showed Mom my seat belt dress for one of the weddings.  Well, at least that's what I claiming it is.  It's an upscale flapper style that I find quite sassy.   Perfect for moi and that celebration.

Still awaiting two other boxes.  I schlepped my Quadrifoglio earrings to the Portland Tiffany store and they had to be sent to New York.  Doesn't it just figure that a couple of days into knee rehab a while back, I broke the earrings that mean four-leaf clover in Italian.  Luck meets fate. The other shipment will be eyeglasses.  They're being handcrafted so who knows when they'll arrive, but oh so worth the wait.  Imagine a company that finally understands that eyeglasses are an accessory!  Leave it to the Swiss.  I chose a modified cat eye with amethyst bridge and connectors, as a start, and then bought hunter green and another patterned frost set of temples.  They can even have multiple different shape lenses.  

There's a new Indian restaurant in town and an Irish pub opening soon.  Curry or Guinness - oh make my heart flutter.

The sun is strong today but there is a winterly spring chill in the air.  Living here allows one to experience diversity - weather diversity - daily.

Mission for this week, should you dare to attempt, is savor a moment.  Write you next Sunday with I'm sure some tidbits to share.

Sunday, May 24, 2009

I'm post-Oregon rally stewarding and vacay and I already need to leave again. I must figure out how to make some extra moolah so I can go on a couple of long weekends again.

I sherpa'd the good camera out there and WOW! was that a good choice. Imagine seeing one mountain out of your windshield and the reflection of another in your rear view mirror. Thank you rally family for the opportunities you have given me. This marks 20 years of rally (I started young). They are a family. It is amazing how months pass and it seems like it was just yesterday that I was with them.

Marshmallow clouds hung over the Columbia River and
the rivers on the scenic byway with their waterfalls were totally mist-ifying. The rally provided a room in Hood River with a balcony overlooking the Columbia literally feet away. A quick run to the local brewery resulted in a relaxing evening preparing a presentation on the laptop for EMS Week while enjoying the sun and breeze off the water. A salad medley of locally grown hazelnuts and pears mixed with spinach, goat cheese, and lightly smoked chicken was scrumptious with the local brew. A non-hockey town, I was able to get text messages and updates from home on the Wings (thanks guys!). Now that's living, eh!

A quick trip to Bonneville Dam made me reminisce about Grandpa and the hydros.
I took pics of the gushing water and beautiful grounds, plus I walked over bridges. Grandpa would've been proud of me as he used to have to carry me over them when I was little.

Absolutely gorgeous days during the rally produced a Rudolph nose...and that was a good thing. The sun really brings lightness to a soul.

The Jacksons are doing very well and their hospitality extended to me is cherished. I met Gunner, a mostly black lab into a Golden family. He has his work cut out for him. The little buggers had dug and ate through their underground fence so they could flee with the wind. Fixed them and the fence, that is. Their new home and its kitchen with ooo-la-la maple cabinets....I could do a bit of cooking there! I made baked brie the night before I left and I do believe they think I'm a crazy foodie. Krista turned 12! I still have the pics of Austin and her with Monza as a puppy before he was flighted to me. Time - it goes so fast...

Elk. Austin called in an elk and she was oh so close. The night before there were elk on one side of us and black tails on the other. Sweet. That's a memory.

Carol helped me find dresses to wear to weddings I have to attend this summer. She also convinced me of a jacket and Swiss eyeglasses with changeable temples. Carol, you are such an enabler!

Traveling alone always poses a challenge or two. One was how to get all of my luggage and a case of wine on the plane. I mailed home 13 pounds of clothing and decided to take a chance and hope for curbside luggage check-in at the airport. YES! PDX has it and so my wine arrived on the beltway along with my perfectly weighted bag. Then the question for Mom, why is there so much smoke in the air? Arrived at home to hear my radio going ballistic. Off to a forest fire...I am...back home.

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Life is absolutely flying by...

I have started creating actual paper sticky note lists.  That's unheard of for me as I tend to just thrive on those mental sticky notes instead.

No, I am not going to talk about the flu.  I have heard beyond enough about the flu.  It is amazing to me how much people can plan and either forget to use it or find out they didn't actually think through the minute detail of their plan to see if it actually covers everything.

To some, there is a world of difference between words on paper and physically enacting.

Somehow, some way I will read my fire textbook.  The class started months ago and the test is at the end of the month.  I figure it's about time to get with the program.  Perhaps I'll forgo packing my mobile ham radio in the luggage for a textbook.  Yes, I'm going to Oregon!  Say - it's about time, Lyn!  Ahhh - the days of going west four times a year....seeing friends, flying low through the mountains, breathing the crispness, sipping incredible pinot noir, oh - I cannot wait!

Off to rescue training.  The sky is turning very dark and it looks like it's starting to pour.  While I love destroying things, we best not be cutting cars in a deluge.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

No internet at home...  It is amazing how much I miss it.  I would watch television programs, keep connected to friends, and just be aware of what's going on in the world via the web.  So when the mysterious way I was able to connect disappeared recently, it was like becoming a hermit.

I seem to be working all of the time for no more on the bottom line.   I recently figured out how to open a sole proprietorship and am now able to get paid for things once I figure out who will pay me and for what?  So, skimming back on spending makes getting an internet connection at home a real toss-up.  Although, I finally got around last evening to canceling the dial-up service I never used.

So I find myself at Starbucks.  Slowly sipping a skinny decaf sugar-free vanilla latte and working on my computer.  

Where there is a will...

Sunday, March 29, 2009

I'm a cornucopia of oils, tinctures, salves, liquid meds and more.  I don't get sick very often, but when I do it's shotgun approach to betterment.  I refused to recognize all of the signs this cold was giving and didn't nip it soon enough.  Now - well, I think I could be hired to kill any bugs within a 20 foot radius.  Walking bug bomb.

So as I mope around the house with my blankees, what better time than to catch up on work.  Creating a presentation for the state EMS conference next month and jazzing it with some photos to break the monotony.  Reading through stuff that I would never get to sitting at my desk.  Time management at its best.

Skipper, Rico and the rest on Madagascar - love 'em!  Many interesting lines and thoughts in that movie.  Uniqueness lost amongst the rest of the zebras, reclaiming status within the Pride in an usual way, coming full circle in life, on and on...  

Friday, March 27, 2009


I went to the movie store tonight on the way home.  Coming down with a cold and very little sleep lately, yet I stop to get movies.  That's me alright.  Madagascar 2 (for the penguins, of course), Ron White and Sex in the City.  Confused?  Well, apparently I am too.

In a silly moment, I took an online questionnaire and then popped in Sex in the City - the movie.  Oddly, I don't even remember how I got to the questionnaire.  The results were sent to my email account so I paused the blah, blah stuff at the beginning of the DVD.  My result - I am Carrie Bradshaw.  Who's Carrie Bradshaw?  Then I started watching the movie, and now I write...

Ever been faced with things that you don't want to see?  Over and over - life, stalled in the center lane.  Is it to startle you to move forward?  Is it purposeful in that you still have something to learn?  Some people just get out and start walking, no bearing at all.  Others sit in the stalled car, watch people grow up, leave, and sometimes come back through again for a visit.  Oh and then there are those that get out, try to work on the car, fail and say hmmm - now what?

I tend to shed advice and opinions like a malamute blowing coat.  Sometimes it gets a little out of hand and I almost always think it goes unheard.  But, in the last couple of weeks, I've heard some echoed.  Huh.

"Serendipity.  Look for something, find something else, and realize that what you've found is more suited to your needs than what you thought you were looking for."  Lawrence Block

Thursday, March 19, 2009

We are on the cusp of spring.  Came into this world on the day before the 1st Day of Spring, otherwise, I'd certainly not remember it.  I do share this day with something that's been celebrated in San Juan since the late 1700s - The Swallows Return to Capistrano Day.  Woo-whoo!

As if that's not enough to know spring is almost here, I went from princess gliding on ice to muckin' like a pig in mud to trudging through snow up to mid-thigh yesterday.  The sun melted all of the ice off the decks and this morning there is snow on them.

Tempting - real tempting to just roll over and throw the comforter over my head.  Alas, soon, very soon there will be buds on the trees, wisps of green grass, and the wheel goes 'round and 'round.

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Awakened by the sound of Sumo wrestlers chasing each other on my roof.

These squirrels are on steroids.

This teeny finch held its ground on the bird feeder.  It watched and waited until within striking distance, then bombed the grays with seed.

Saturday, March 14, 2009



Consists of: 
sea salt pretzel, chocolate piece, caramel ice cream (Target brand) 
pinot noir from a Mondavi by Waterford stem

Windows down in the car, iPod blasting, found some corners.  :)  Took some pics and walked around in the woods.

Now that's how you treat yourself after a grueling week...or at least that's how I do!
There is a bird festival ongoing in my backyard...

It all started with the glimpse of a finch this morning while I was scrubbing the kitchen floor.  It made me think that little thing will drown in the overfilled fountain.  So I removed some water and dead leaves, then filled the squirrel's fast-food feeder thinking maybe once a bird could eat the bird seed.

They have arrived!

Finches and chick-a-dees are everywhere and the near misses!  They could use air traffic control.
Moochie-toochie left last night.  It was strange not hearing him do that full body shake and huff along side the bed this morning.  Many of his characteristics threw me back to Monza, well except that Monz was ADHD king of the pack and Mooch is just a laid back cruiser.

You know how some weeks feel like years or even strings of deja-vue experiences?  Ah yes, that encapsulates this past week for me.  Exhausting.

It's supposed to be a warmer day today and the sun is filtering in the house.  I will motivate myself to get some house cleaning accomplished and then just wander.  It's not all that often that I have time to just wander.

Monday, March 9, 2009

Ugh - time change is a killer.

Saturday was ice rescue training in the Dead River.  I tried making my quasi-dry suit's arm be a leg.  Nothing like bringing laughter to the group.  (note quasi - my suit was the only one to leak)  The sun was glorious - it felt fantastic!  I could've floated or laid on the ice for hours.  It reminded me of the days years ago when we'd have a sunny, warm-ish winter day and I'd use canola oil.  On Saturday I was thinking, gee - I have this real coconut oil in the kitchen...

Sunday was feel sick day...almost as though I had food poisoning.  Blaugh.

Mooch is finally eating.  Of course only when I mix up little venison treats in his food with warm water and make it into a gravy.  It took about 30 minutes to convince him my interior stairs were not too scary.  With treats on each step and me sitting on them to coax, he finally tried one at a time.  It's a little strange for me to have a Golden in the house.  He's a log dog Golden almost all of the time, not an ADHD Golden.  Plus he's only slightly food motivated and takes everything so softly.  Huge learning curve for me.

Off to get ready for work - seems like the weekend went a little too fast.

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Mooch-a-Roo is here until....?  I suppose I should've asked his owners when they are returning.  If you recall, Mooch is the Landcruiser Golden Retriever blend.  My mother put it perfectly when she explained that he's the romantic, whereas, CashManDu is the spitfire.  You know the saying about dogs and their owners...fill in the blanks...

Needless to say, Mooch misses his owners.  He'll sometimes eat when hand fed and loves the venison treats I picked up for him.  We played snowballs tonight and that brought a glimmer to his dark brown, expressive eyes.  Did you know all Goldens smell alike on their cheeks just in front of their ears?  Golden toes also smell like Frito-Doritos.   I've discovered not all dogs have this particular scent emanating from their toes.   

And you're asking yourself, why on earth is she smelling dog toes?  It's called living life to the fullest.   Use all of your senses!

Monday, March 2, 2009

"To love at all is to be vulnerable.  Love anything and your heart will certainly be wrung and possibly broken.  If you want to make sure of keeping it intact, you must give your heart to no one, not even to an animal.  Wrap it carefully round hobbies and little luxuries; avoid all entanglements; lock it up safe in the casket or coffin of your selfishness.  But in that casket - safe, dark, motionless, airless - it will change.  It will not be broken; it will become unbreakable, impenetrable, irredeemable."  C. S. Lewis

With that, I'm off to stare at the lake and take a few pictures in the late afternoon light.

Saturday, February 28, 2009

Today - three days in one or at least that's what the bod feels it should be.

Cash-Man-Du arrived at my house last night.  Fine with me!  He's the furless (well, it's just really short fur) hot water bottle that loves the big bed with flannel sheets.  When he dreams, his toes move.  It's a struggle not to laugh.  We went for not one, but two!, walks today.  He takes great thrill in bolting off like a horse to get me moving quickly before the long lead pulls him.  Mom worked commands with him and wow he must really love cheese because he was at the top of his game.

It was practical day for fire class.  Quickly got through all of the stations and left.  Not very team like of me, but I had things to do and frankly I'm not really that jazzed about any of this stuff.

The pager went off this afternoon while Cash and I were napping.  I hate it when that happens.  Total struggle for me to put one foot in front of the other as though I'm not firing on all cylinders.  Heard snowmobile rescue and thought ugh...couldn't just be a I can't get up call.  I did remember to empty my bladder and grab some snowmobile gear.  I rode squatted on the back of a sleigh for a while with my arms extended in front.  Long story - as usual, I never get the typical types of injuries that can be packaged in a traditional fashion.  

Between class, the call and long walks, my knee got a work out today.  I'm thinking it'll be an ibuprofen evening.  That might help my headache too.

My office at work moved this past week.  What an ordeal...

Next week will be better.  Plus, I left my pager on the rig so tonight will be good too.  :)

Monday, February 23, 2009

To everything there is a season,
a time for every purpose under the sun.
A time to be born and a time to die;
a time to plant and a time to pluck up that which is planted;
a time to kill and a time to heal
...a time to weep and a time to laugh;
a time to mourn and a time to dance
...a time to embrace and a time to refrain from embracing;
a time to lose and a time to seek;
a time to rend and a time to sew;
a time to keep silent and a time to speak;
a time to love and a time to hate;
a time for war and a time for peace.

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Is that a sunburn?  Ahhh no, that would be windburn.

The wind was wicked today by Lake Superior.  The visibility was questionable at times and the state highway to Munising was closed for part of the day because of it.

Where was I?  Standing outside, cooking, of course....and waiting for the sled dogs.  Only a 9.5 hour shift today.  Took some interesting pictures that I will eventually post once I unearth the camera bag from the car.

I'm whipped.  Took some zinc, bromelain and quercetin + vitamin C.   

Good night to you.

Saturday, February 21, 2009

Woof-da!  It's dog sled weekend!

Raced home from work for a quick change and ham radio install in the Subie.  Ate a little along the way since the only thing I could stomach all day was an absolute delish fritter that morning (thank you!).

The sun was setting in a pink, gold, and finally orange marmalade way while Peter and the 4H crew shoveled snow on Midnight Run trail.  They made the race trail into a shoot through the S-curve over the railroad tracks.  Then the trail groomer came along.  Figures. 

The first teams were almost 15 minutes later than last year.  This was actually good because a train also came through just before the leaders.  A few teams dragged their mushers after popping off their sleds over icy bumps, but all continued on their way.  The last team was having difficulties with inexperienced lead dogs.  I can only assume another train coming along right next to them while they waited wasn't helpful either.  The musher did not want assistance leading through this tricky corner, and the rest of the crowd watched as the train screeched to a halt past our location.  Some said they saw a tail light and then a crash.

At this point I'm thinking why me?  

Priorities:  get the dogs through, call our County Dispatch to ask if anything was reported by a train, let race control know all teams accounted for at this location, put more clothes on and start trudging down the tracks with a fire fighter from our Township that happened to also be at this spot.

Our Dispatch called me back to say the train hit a snowmobile.  Reaching the end of the train, we find out from Dispatch that the snowmobiler was able to get clear of the tracks but the snowmobile is in a ball.  With that I tell Dispatch I'm turning around since I have yet to even see the front of the train.  They say a deputy is on his way and I make it clear that it's a very long walk.  

Then the train starts moving.  Let Dispatch know so they can find out if they're leaving and where the snowmobiler might be going if so.

Getting closer to the clearing, we see a car stuck on a snowmobile trail.  First thought, I have a tow strap and can this night get any better?  Well, yes it could, because before I get back a bunch of people of varying intox levels have decided to surround the patrol car, lift and push it off the banked trail.  

The patrol car leaves down a dead-end road to find an easier way to the train.  There is no easier way to the train, which was my point expressed to Dispatch should anyone decide to trek the long distance.  I tell the deputy that maybe a snowmobiler coming through here can pick up the person up the tracks.  The fire fighter asks the sled dog snowmobile sweep to go pick up the person and I see this as my chance to escape!

I'll go work a crossing for a little bit today, then come home and make food for tomorrow, maybe find a quick snooze and finally work race communication at Race Headquarters from 9 to midnight tonight.

Tomorrow is party at the Welcome Center - stop by!  Shift starts at noon and food will be hot and served a little thereafter.  (chili, hot dogs, brats, brownies, etc.)

Saturday, February 14, 2009

The bag says "Multi-Bird Blend with Fruits and Nuts."  

Note the word "bird" because I watched The Big Grey (and we're not talking parrot) lick his lips a few times this morning.  As I looked at his - shant it be a her - hips, I recollected to my first time trying squirrel stewed in a mushroom sauce.

No, goodness, while I love shooting, I could never shoot an animal.  Going out to destroy something today on this lovely February 14 does sound rather appealing though.  Perhaps I'll renew my rod and gun club membership today.

I picked up perky pink tulips yesterday.  Have you ever sat and looked at the lines of a tulip, even their leaves are exquisite.  Combine that with the spicy smell of a white carnation (colors don't smell as good) or the scent of a rose and we're talking bliss.

It must be that time of year when I surround myself with signs of summer.  The chosen oil scent for the house is a not too sweet vanilla coconut, while my car's aromatherapy device has pineapple orchid.  I've been using all things cocoa butter lately too.  Now I just need some warm sand, a beating sun, and parasailing!  

Things to do today: laundry (it is the weekend - of course that's on the list), slimming more seconds off donning an air bottle (rusty one here did it fine the first time, but that's not good enough for me), maybe a late lunch and target practice.

Tomorrow?  Homemade potato soup and bread.  Then Mooch-A-Roo and I will be hanging!   His mom and dad are going on a vacay and I thought it would be good to dry run a little stay at the spa.  Stay tuned to find out if I still think he's a Landcruiser.

This coming week - well, it's pack @ work week.  My office is being moved on Friday to a 3rd floor space in the Administration building where I will be adjacent to co-workers and my supervisor.  Just another life adventure.  I will be focused on the sled dog races that weekend anyway.  It's the little sleep, run after dogs, stop traffic, be a ham (radio kind - geesh!) weekend!  The finale - my annual party at the Welcome Center where I'll dust off my outdoor cooking ability.  Maybe I'll bring an EZ-Up this year.  Come one - come all!   Sunday, Feb 22, noon until the last dogs in...

Monday, February 9, 2009

I have the blower wheelie perfected.

Yes, this year instead of continually shoveling EVERYWHERE, I put the blue monster (an affectionate term for my baby, the blower) on the back deck.  Proved essential to remove the snow I had shoveled from the roof.  I should've taken a picture during that process.  It was quite deceiving because the ends of the house showed little, but in the middle - holy wah!  No wonder I heard a few creaks.  So glad I hired out the roof shoveling job.

Speaking of roofs, I came close to having a dog on mine this past weekend.  Come to find out Cash-Man-Du likes ladders.  Doesn't that just figure.  Paint him white with a few spots and he'd be the perfect fire pooch, or wouldn't he look mighty fine with a little leather tool belt.  Ooo-la-la!  Mooch-a-Roo might spend a little time here next weekend.  Going from a Vizsla to a Golden is like going from a Ferrari SWB to a LandCruiser.  Each a specialty of their own and mostly just a driving change challenge.

Day after day of moving snow, I took a break tonight and just drove, more like busted, through the front mound with the Subaru.  It's a light little buggy.  Should've gone for the exercise, but instead I'm now done with all of my homework assignments through March in the fire course.  Always good to stay a little ahead with my kind of lifestyle.

There goes the snowmobile groomer...gee and on the trail this time.  In the middle of the night when it's storming, they "groom" the highway (shhhhhh!).

Enough for the day - it's time to peel the cellophane contacts off my eyeballs.

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Chele, who recently reminded me that we've known each other since 3rd grade - wow!, told me quite some time ago that my largest obstacle in life was having an unwavering ethical foundation.  Her statement totally caught me off guard.  I was speechless.  

My philosophy prof from years ago might crack a slight grin to know I still remember ethics is composed of varying theories and principals.  I find myself tonight refreshing my memory.  The principal of beneficence, especially applicable to healthcare, that basically means to do good.  Respect of person, least harm chosen, and justice - all guiding principals.  The ethical theories:  deontology (obligations & duties - a big brother is expected to look out for his sister), utilitarianism (greatest good), and more.  

Seems as though when I find myself in a difficult spot and second guessing my actions, I reflect on these and say "please help me to know what is right, what is wrong and to love and serve."  Like a knock-knock to myself, a check-in, a reminder that there is not one way, not one perspective on each situation, but there are guides.

So with that maybe I'll get a little sleep in knowing what I do, what I say, is what I am.  Peace.

Sunday, February 1, 2009

Whew - where did that week go?

There's a pink haze in the West this morning.  I knew there was a reason I was laying awake at 6 this morning.  It was probably a gorgeous sunrise that I missed.  But, the greatly revered sleep and rest overtook my gumption to rise.  I cannot tell you how fab it is to go back to my old pager that goes off for the right agencies.  Enough of that disturbed sleep while listening to everything around the clock!  People that do - well, it seems like they're just a bit too nosey and not paying enough attention to their own life, don't you think?

Cash-Man-Du was here for part of the weekend.  Yep, that's right I missed the Sno*Drift Rally to be with a friend's downright cool Vizsla.  While I missed seeing the rally gang, we had an excellent time hanging out.  He's quite brilliant and always up for something new, which of course makes me smile!

It was girl's night out at my place last evening.  I made a phyllo wrapped baked brie infused with pepper jelly and toasted pine nuts, and Greek pasta with grilled chicken.  Mmmm - scrumptious with a glass or two of Voignier.  :)  

Watched Kung Fu Panda, and gee I had an internal glimmer.  Earlier in the day, a re-run of NCIS had some of the same lines and thoughts.  Can you imagine - how different is a Panda animation from a criminal investigation show and to watch on the same day?!   You're wondering what?  Well, in a snapshot:  reason for everything, nothing just happens, life's not about luck and chance, stop forcing what is not supposed to be, on and on.  Yes, the trick is to have open senses so when that kind of stuff happens you go WOW! life is planned and not just a fumbling train of coincidences.  Hmmm - reassuring.

Sunday, January 25, 2009

I really have to go move snow, but I sit here under a blankee thinking can't it just blow away?  It's windy because I hear the chimes.   Now that reminds me of a story to share...

For three years in a row, I have been awakened in the spring by a robin that would continuously face plant into my front bay window.  Literally, body slam it over and over again.  Every time "he" bammed the window (yep - he liked himself a little too much!), there would be slime on the window and droppings on the swinging bench.  We had some conversations and stare downs, which didn't work.  So I think it was Mom that found the most hideous ceramic owl to scare "him."  My thought - if my stare downs don't scare him, a piece of fired clay isn't either.  I was correct.  Then I thought maybe chimes would work?  So, I bought this green glass and many copper tubes cheap thing and hung it from the gutter.  "His" beady little eyes thanked me for the background music.

Time to find the UnderArmour and displace some snow.

Saturday, January 24, 2009

This week flew.

Speaking of time flying, I just discovered I didn't mail my Christmas and New Year's cards.  So they along with boots and drug testing stuff to ship back are now piled together for a trip to the UPS Store.  Seriously - better late than never, plus it'll make them laugh.

No more drug testing.  I greatly miss the money and the time it made me carve to just sit with the guys and talk or tease about anything under the sun or the sun itself.

Must get moving...will fill my day with lots to do.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Ever look at your life to see what you've done or haven't?  Sit quietly in a hair salon for HOURS and it'll all come to you.  :)

Sue, a former co-worker of mine, said I have gypsy blood.  It struck me years ago when she opined this.  Maybe I see it now.  I wonder if this has been by choice or by plan?  It would be a plan unknown to me.

My EMS hobby turns 20 this year.  I grew up with it - the good, the bad, the indifference and the difference.  Kris has done it again and gave me a quote that is so timely and so mirroring:  
"My goal is to live each day as it's the last day I'll spend on this earth.  That doesn't mean I don't make plans, but I want to live so that I won't need tomorrow to correct the mistakes of today.  I want more meaning out of each thing I do or say.  I want to help others make life meaningful now."  - Don Piper

Sunday, January 18, 2009

I have sheet music to record for a men's chorus.  I'll test out the Mac's recording ability - wish the piano was better tuned.  The guys are very nice and quite complimentary, but with fire classes on the same night as practice and just my inability to commit to stuff I used to do...maybe this will help them.

Mom is on her way over for some bourbon balls in exchange for homemade cinnamon and peanut butter rolls.  I'm thinking I need to run to town for more vanilla wafers.  I can just taste Virgin Island rum balls now!

I have procrastinated long enough...only because I have no CLUE how to do this, but as usual will take it on anyway because there is no choice.  Off to the basement utility bathroom to disconnect the shower faucet, and take off a board that Grandpa insisted years ago that should be on there.  I've been advised recently no and in order to move forward with the project I'll do what I'm currently being told.  I love life.  If I don't blog for days, check the basement and see if I'm floating.  If I get through this, I'm definitely headed to town for more vanilla wafers.

Saturday, January 17, 2009

...and now another Saturday wisps away...

Didn't get to demolishing the bathroom.  Opted for Pilates and lifting, a run to drool at Lowe's, family, friends and finally the making of 100 proof bourbon balls.  They're marinating in the fridge.  

I'm cozy, comfy in UnderArmour, which I cannot speak highly enough of since they're like David to our frigid Goliath days.  Now to relax and catch up on some Private Practice episodes.
Clementine & clove burning.  Beer bread in the oven.  Bacon dip & veggies chillin'.  iTunes blaring.  Washing dishes, doing laundry and scrubbing the floor - it's the weekend!  Yahoo!

Friday, January 16, 2009

It's so cold that my banana runts froze.  

Sitting here literally cocooned in a blanket thinking my front bay window really needs to be added to the list of things to replace.  Tomorrow I will disassemble the basement shower faucets and destroy a little more.  

I never remember a day off of school for cold weather that is unless the school's boiler had a problem.  Now, schools close.  In the day of caregivers driving kids to school like ants shuttling peanut brickle crumbs?  Not like so many of the little souls are out there pounding the icy walks to make it in the nick of time.  Amazes me.  Yet it makes me think what generations think of one another.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Chilly.  No, downright cold outside.  Energy zapping on such another busy week.  Time to support the immune system!

Received another random act of kindness today.  Just blows me away when that happens.  Must pass it on...

Asking for restful sleep tonight.

Monday, January 12, 2009

Car load to Goodwill yesterday, and from the looks of my closets, I'll be going there a few more times.  

Ever notice how you hang on to the oddest things?  Sometimes out of sheer laziness, other times as reminders of a moment.  Time to de-clutter - well, even more.  As though I'll ever be wearing those silver prom shoes again or the outfits I sewed.  [I know some of you are saying, "she's only getting rid of one pair?!" while others are thinking, "HOLY!  She sewed?!"]  All of the t-shirts collected from the events I've volunteered for could clothe a village, and not a small village either.  Quite a few years ago I put the special ones in my second hope chest.  Now that's a novel creation - hope chest.

It makes me laugh that I have two hope chests - how apropos.  My first one contained kitchen stuff amongst a few other things as I was collecting for the day I'd be on my own.  That day came and I sat here with borrowed bean bags, tv, piano, bed and now an empty hope chest.  But, I had a completely stocked kitchen.  The next purchases were a dining room table and hutch, oh and finally a sofa.  Place for the china came before that of the heiny.  

Looking around here it's hard to remember the scarcity.  Now I find myself giving more than collecting.  Life is a circle.

Friday, January 9, 2009

Did a wheelie while making a quick 90 with the snowblower this morning. Here's a suggestion: don't do that. So there I am in my jammies, middle of the driveway, holding the thing up with one arm and trying to put the track back on with the other. That was, of course, after attempting reverse to re-thread it. Result: drag the thing up the front driveway in disgust and call Dad.

Excited for the weekend! I'm clearing out the basement utility / bathroom because after 15 years I'm thinking I need to finish it. Found a mason and on to figuring out the rest soon! If interest rates drop any more, I might refinance in these last few years left on the house. Lots of stuff I'd like to do to that place, yet the question remains: how much should I when it's not my dream?

I have always envisioned a small rustic, yet modern, home with huge windows showcasing The Lake. Open floor plan, cathedral ceiling, natural beams with ironwork. Tulikivi soapstone firebox with bake oven smack in the middle sporting warmed surrounding bench seats. Natural wood of maple and cherry throughout - not a lick of oak. My American walnut baby grand. Loft. A cook's kitchen with an island and prep sink. Stone waterfall shower. Very clean, simple architecture - Scandinavian in nature.

Mmmmm - can you see it..?

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Life is getting a little bit more like it used to be, but is that a good thing?  Something going on all of the time, yet pushing myself for more experiences.

This need for MORE all started in nursery school.  It wasn't good enough to just be part of the group.  I would gather the fellow kids into a semi-circle and pretend to read to them, play the piano, and then when it was time to leave stand at the door making sure they were properly attired.  Mother hen started early.

Elementary through middle school was kick in the rear creative time.  Remember those big corkboards?  Loved doing montages on those instead of just boring recess.   Drawing and painting flourished but only hockey players, sticks, and skates.  Scrapbooking - you guessed it, hockey, and writing a few poems.  I insisted on getting the Almanac.  Little did Mom know, I needed it for a NHL team's address.  My poetry had to get to someone.  I told her a few years later.  

Fourth grade came along and so did working at the shop after school by entering parts orders on a Commodore computer.   That reminds me of science class show & tell:  cylinder, piston, rings, valve and plug to be followed by how the body makes dreams.  Odd little child.  Remember - opposites attract.

Newspaper, yearbook, ace-ing basketball so I could flat out refuse gymnastics (I'd still do that to this day!), and playing for choirs that now seemed to be coming out of the woodwork.

High school - too much to list.  Then came the deluge:  rally, EMS, working at least one job or more, taking college classes and doing a few other things.  :)

Juggler.  Are you one too?

Saturday, January 3, 2009

Things that make me go hmmm...rescue swimmers, rodeo clowns, goalies - shall I stop 'cause I'm thinking there might be a theme emerging?  ha!  On the topic of themes, as you may know music is at my core.  Eclectic is an understatement.  In these wee hours, I've downloaded everything from Black Rebel Motorcycle Club to Vitamin String Quartet.  The link to Shattered over and on the right of this page is an interesting piece too.

Be adventuresome!  Listen to something totally uncharacteristic of you.  Who knows upon what you may stumble.  It is amazing what music can do...

Friday, January 2, 2009

January 1st motivation...

Two huge bags for Vinnies, an outdoor trash can full, reconnects with people of the past and a hilarious time with totally new.  Whew!  It is like I've been trying to head up the fish ladder and now I just reversed and jumped the dam!

I finally hooked up the Canon printer yesterday that I received months ago.  Goodness - it is very nice & much better than I ever expected.  Why did I wait this long?  I was encouraged New Year's Eve to gallery my photography.  I'm starting to find that a bit intriguing.

Just noticed all of my plants are calling for refreshments.  Time to get moving around here.  Ooo - I can legitimately wear curvy low rises to work on Fridays starting today.  I suspect that is the best fundraiser for work's Foundation.