December 30, 2010

acceptance and the obligatory new years post....(# 700)

totally cute from:  YeeHaw (on etsy)

as i end this year...this 2010...i wanted to say first that i am grateful for each of you with me. the talkers, the listeners, the headnodders and "uh-huh"ers. whether you say something or not, i'm grateful that you entered my little world. i do love you like biscuits and gravy - and for a southern gal that's a heck of a lot!! xo

as 2010 winds down and we anticipate 2011 - i wish you all peace and joy and hope you find what you're wishing for in the new year. and as you are searching - i wish you comfort and rest, because sometimes the journey is hard - i wish you trampolines and sidecars, because sometimes the journey is slow - i wish you lemonade and tea cookies, because sometimes the journey is taxing and exhausting - and i wish you dandelion seeds and balloons, because sometimes, when we're lucky and try really hard, the journey is fun and happy.

for me...well, it’s been a rough three years…that is no joke folks. and i could probably add to that it’s been a rough four years. mom’s illness, mom’s dead, the loss of a career, the finding my footing in another career. the last few years have tried to put their stamp on me.  and I say that not out the “poor me” aspect….though there were times that i have whined, “why me…why can’t life just be easy for once?” but, then again, i find that I’m most challenged and satisfied when I have to make my own way. when I’m not doing that, i find that i’m bored and complacent. *shrugs* maybe it’s the way i’ve programmed my life….maybe it’s too hard to change that now.

2010 was about that recovery. pulling myself up by the bootstraps kindly handed to me by an old friend and the dedication of my life to learning a new career, in a new setting, with a new cast of co-workers. and as i look back over the year i have floundered. due to circumstances out of my control -- i feel as though nothing much was accomplished. this is a difficult feeling - while acknowledging that it was out of my control, it still felt like a strike out. so...what will 2011 be about?

that leads me to "my" word. just a few letters, keystrokes…. a word that everyone has to for themselves. should I be a follower? do what the cool kids are doing? in the past when I’ve picked a word, that word has a bad habit of taunting me – being elusive and difficult to reconcile. so…”believe”, “soar” --- words like that are not good matches for me. i think i might be a bit too practical and a shade too pragmatic for the magical words (though I really want to believe in magic…yes, I do) therefore my word this year is acceptance. accepting my life “as is” and that changes to that are made through hard work and dedication to the “something” instead of just the hoping and dreaming. (walk the talk)

say it with me....ahhhh-ceptance....(emphasis on the "ahhhhhhhhhhh" i hope)

December 28, 2010

dc on the quick

two weeks ago, i was in dc for a series of meetings about health information technology and exchange - oooh, sounds fancy and boring right?  *smile*  due to the thin southern blood i have, the length of the meetings, and the bone chilling dc weather - my photography ops were rather thin.... here are the few i got.

you know, 6:00 a.m is pretty early in the morning if you ask me 
the view from 13A (i usually pick this row so superstitious people will leave the row empty - you would be surprised how often i have a row to myself)

breakfast at old ebbitt's (?) grill (daughter and niece of my co-worker)

looks like they were ready to go somewhere - see the snipers on the roof???  sorta scary!

the white house christmas tree - in the gray, flat light of the morning

later that day the clouds cleared and the wind howled...i decided not to wait to go up

waiting to hail a taxi - the view was beautiful

one of the days was an "un-meeting" - very new-agey and unstructured.  i learned to attend sessions as either a convener (leader), member, butterfly or bumblebee.  i also learned about the law of two feet.  very empowering in some ways and very....weird.  it was great to open dialogue but not so great in knowing what was going on in other groups.

kay-kay smiled no matter what - taylor on the other hand was rather miserable due to the cold.  i think i looked that way too.  this also was their second day without luggage so that added to the misery - the luggage was delivered later that day.

waiting on a taxi to get to reagan airport - the roads were slush and taxis were hard to come by

i worried that the flights wouldn't make it out - turns out mine was the only one that did on time.  another reason i prefer usairways to other airlines.

December 27, 2010

here comes the.....bride?

as i've said before, i rarely remember my dreams so when i do you can believe they will have some sort of message for me.  sunday morning i woke up laughing...laughing so hard that i woke me up.  i'm rather of the jungian school of thought on dreams in that i think they are a way for us to work through whatever issues that need to be resolved in our life and are largely symbolic. 

the dream...

i was at lunch with some faceless friends, one of which turned out to be intuitiative.  as we were chatting amongst the group i described a vision of a single woman laying on a chaise and asked what it meant.  the friend (female) said to me 'stay calm, it will all work out.'  then we chatted and laughed some more while sharing the meal when the friend again turned to me and asked, 'do you want to know the date of your wedding?'  i nodded, clearly skeptical.  she said, 'june 16, 2011 - that is the date.'  i laughed outloud and shook my head.  'no way - no way - there is not even a prospect out there.  i'm not dating, nothing.'  the friend smiled and nodded her head.  then she said, 'i'm just sayin' that is the date.  do with it what you will.' 

i awoke laughing but clearly remembering the entire dream.  the first part was easy - that was a message to myself that in the midst of chaos - things will work out.  i remind myself that only 15% of everything is in my control and that i need to deal with that.  the other 85% i need to make sure that i deal with what impacts me and then let the other go.  but the wedding thing threw me for a loop.  i couldn't figure it out.  so, i consulted the trusty internet dream dictionary....this is what it says (as close as to the situation i'm describing):  To dream that you are planning a wedding to someone you never met, is a metaphor symbolizing the union of your masculine and feminine side. It represents a transitional phase where you are seeking some sort of balance between your aggressive side and emotional side. The dream may also indicate that two previously conflicting aspects are merging together as one.

it makes sense as i am in a transitional place, trying to marrying together the new and old pieces of my job given the changes that have take place in the last few weeks.  it also works out that one side is very aggressive and uncertain, while the other side there is calm of knowing what is happening.  but i wonder about the date - the very specific date.  is it that i think it will take a while for it to work out?  i cannot think of another reason that the date would be significant. 

December 26, 2010

when it's all said and done...

it's over so quickly it seems.  oh, i know the consumerism is a slow build up and the hunt for the hot toy seems impossible, but when it comes down to the basic wonderful things about the holiday, they flee too fast.  like quicksilver through our fingers and motes that float away on a sunbeam. 

like another friend, i'm stopped taking a lot of family photos during different events because, well, it felt as though i was observing instead of participating.  and with time fleeting so very fast, i wanted to tight to the moments as they happened.  but i will admit there were times that i wished i had the camera in my hands during the night.  another reason i've put the camera down is most of the events lately have taken place at night and i really dislike fiddling with the flash attachment.  (an excuse....sort of)

but this moment had to be recorded as gigi pretended to take a bit of her gingerbread house.  this girl is a hoot and was hyped up with the promise of presents and sugar - - not necessarily in that order.  she's been such a fan of my camera that i bought her a camera for did her mom and dad and another aunt.  a quick swap with santa (aren't i lucky?) netted me a blizzard maker instead for her.  her sweet sister loved the dress-up clothes and she flitted through the house wearing her fairy wings.  the boys loved the cash -- of course the difference in ages means they no longer get toys.  *pouty lip*

the cold weather has put me into a cooking frenzy.  so far i've made hash brown casserole (for our dinner), santa fe soup (for comfort) and shrimp and grits (for yumminess).  if i had any room left, i would seriously consider a pound cake....however, there is some red velvet cake that still has my name on it.  snow flurries have fluttered all day - my brother was stir crazy enough to go out to the woods.  me?  i've been in my jammies and have considered naps today.  perhaps now? 

i hope you had a beautiful christmas.  mine was low key and perfect. 

December 22, 2010


hope is such a simple but beautiful word.  it is the essence of all things wanted, wished, and cherished.  it is an anchor in a storm and peace when in tormoil.  it is looking fear straight in the eye and still having something to hold on to. 

it is a gift.

in this blessed season, i wish for each of you to have peace, beauty, calm, love and yes, a bit of magic and seeing the holiday through the eyes of a child, the wisdom of the elders, and the joy in a warm heart.

i know i will be around later this week, but i like sending my wishes out a few days early so by the time the big day gets here, that i will be feeling some of the same things.  xoxo

December 20, 2010

the explanation

words cannot begin to explain the past few weeks.  images come to me in bursts of color and then shatter into shards of negative images of the previous colors.  it is up.  it is down.  it is 180 degrees in another direction.  suffice to say, life has been difficult lately.  in the past sixty days i've changed offices twice, been to dc and back, sat in all day meetings, worried, fretted, cried and sometimes laughed.  the best i can say is personally life is okay - i'm maintaining an even on the other hand has been terribly stressful and wearing.  it goes to show you that life can change on a dime - as someone told me last week, "life is hard, suck it up."  last week it was tears and worry - this week, i found my inner core again and am re-building after coming home to an office moved without my input, my unit's secretary taken without explanation, the entire agency network with a horrible virus leaving us no access to files, deadlines that are insane...and yes i could go on.  the office i moved into was apparently last occupied by pigs with the cubicle walls dirty, footprints on the wall beneath my window sill (apparently they sat talking with their feet propped up on the sill while staring out the window), and for some reason i cannot fathom - my top drawer is lied with black pepper.  *shrugs*  and...the thing is i really dislike it when i whine.  i do....but today as i unpacked boxes (don't get me started on how someone when through my personal belongings in my office which had access to my social security number and amex bills.) i would just get overwhelmed and would just stare off into space. 

dc was insanely cold - the day i planned for sightseeing was eaten up by airport delays.  the next day i got to walk by the white house christmas tree on the way to meetings.  i did get to the holocaust museum (wow - powerful) and walked by the washington monument.  at that point the wind was blowing so hard that i didn't go up - i don't do well with the swaying.  the rest of the meetings were inside from 8:00 until 5:00 or 6:00 then to my hotel room to deal with office e-mails and such.  the last day i sat in the airport and prayed the snow did not stop me from getting home. 

i shuffled back to work not knowing where my office was and without a key.....friday was not pretty.  this weekend i finally got to shop for christmas...luckily with a smaller family i only have two more presents to buy.  in fact, i may go to target after this typing - i have missed you guys terribly. 

good things that have happened since i talked oldest niece had a wonderful birthday party, complete with santa.  i got home to my own bed and have slept like a log.  i finally read "the girl with the dragon tattoo" (giving into peer 'book' pressure)  christmas is this week and all of my family are safe, warm and healthy - that is the biggest blessing of them all.  if i haven't said it...i missed you guys.  i think it took me this long to write because i just couldn't put it into words until tonight. 

i hope you all are safe, warm and healthy too.  i can't wait to see what you've been up to....(the few pictures i took in dc will be up soon)

December 12, 2010

crazy, insane and other related stuffs

it was a crazy week at it approaches the holidays and a new at work is insane.  i've taken pictures of my niece's birthday and immediately had to leave for dc.  after a 5 hour layover in charlotte, i'm safely in my hotel room.  of course it was dark when i got here so hopefully pictures tomorrow!

hope you all are doing well....


December 7, 2010


if i had a jersey shore kind of nickname, i would want something really cool like cPOW or something like that.  i wouldn't want to be stuck with a lame nick like ... say snarkie the like.  i don't know why that popped into my brain right now, except i'm running on four hours of sleep and for some reason the sound of "JWoW" is on a loop.  it just kinda rolls off the tongue and echoes. can't stop it.  it's really weird. 

last night/this morning i took my nephew to the local 'game stop'.  as an avid wow play (that's world of warcraft to the tragically unhip like me) and the new release came out at midnight.  actually it was a lot of fun - we drove out there - talking and laughing all the way.  he was able to be one of the 'normal' out of the bunch as he was not dressed up or talking about role play as he was standing in line.  he got his game and though he's 16 now, he reminded me of when he was little and was happy with a new toy.  *sound of my heart melting*  he even got a cool poster for his younger brother.  that's a good kid. 

the weekend was spent in mostly family related activities - babysitting and a birthday dinner.  and now, here i am back at work.  i did buy a christmas tree on sunday morning and plan on putting it up this week.  when i do that, it will be my first christmas tree in over 10 years.  it will be like opening my ornaments up new. 

next week i get to escape to d.c. for a few days - i'm excited as i'm flying in early enough to get to the smithsonian for a few hours.  national portrait gallery here i come!  the remaining days will be spent in endless meetings but for a bright and shining sunday afternoon, i will be lost among the best and most artistic....and i can't wait.  (of course my camera is taking this trip!)

December 3, 2010

getting the groove

hello all - wow, after the month of writing every day i needed a break.  also, i had felt bad all week with a little malaise of some sort but i woke up today and it seemed a little brighter, a little happier, and a little better.  isn't it weird how sometimes our bodies just take what it needs and if you don't give over to it, it will take it from you.  i think i wasn't listening so matters were taken out of my hands.  as a reward, i get to wake up on a friday in a fantastic mood and enjoying this gorgeous weather. 
as they get ready for the christmas tree lighting ceremony tonight, i ponder my own christmas plans.  i'm also thinking about christmas as santa paid my agency a visit today.  each year santa visits as the agency usually sponsors 8-10 familes that would not have a christmas.  it is so beautiful to see as everyone pulls together to make these families happy. 

what is funny after a month of very structured posts, i feel almost adrift on what to write here.  i haven't taken many photographs due to the work load and early nightfall but i am excited about picking up the camera again, something i haven't felt in about six months.  in fact i feel almost as if i've come out of a fog/funk/coma that has lasted about six months.  it wasn't the bad mood sort of funk, but instead the....what the heck am i doing with the rest of my life sorta funk....if that makes any sense whatever.  anyway....who cares - today is so darn beautiful that i want run up and down the street yelling at everyone to just sit back and look how blue the sky is, and aren't we blessed to have all of these gorgeous white marble buildings, and could you as for a better day to have a christmas parade?  it's cool enough to enjoy a chill but not so cold that the marchers will be miserable. 

today on my ipod - all i want (toad the wet sprocket), angel eyes (jeff healey band), angel flying too close to the ground (willie nelson), king of wishful thinking (go west), she talks to angels (the black crows), don't pull your love (hamilton, joe frank & reynolds), stuck in a moment (u2), bleeding love (leona lewis), the man that would be santa (vertical horizon)