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Monthly Archives: September 2012

Day #23 CED – Party and Fall

Today was party day, as well as the first day of fall.

The party was great – full of good food, good friends and lots of laughs.

The bounce house was the hit of the day, for the kids, as well as the adults.

There was no alcohol involved, honest! Just good clean fun!

After the party was over, I took another walk around the property and noticed one of the first signs of fall – the seed balls on the dogwood trees – one of my favorites.

Absolutely can’t believe Fall is here already. I seriously don’t know where the year has gone.

Has Fall arrived in your neck of the woods? What are your favorite first sign the season has changed?

Day #22 CED and Trippin’ Down Memory Lane

I spent the day today baking cakes then frosting them in preparation for Joshua’s birthday party tomorrow.

What a challenge staying out of the batter and frosting was! But in keeping with my desire to stay off of sugar, I was bound and determined not to even let a nibble in my mouth.

Oh, the temptation!

Then I realized I had forgotten to put the vanilla in the batch of frosting for the base coat… So, a tiny little taste was necessary. Hmmm. Not too bad. I think with it added to the decorating frosting it will be okay. Whew! Disaster averted.

Two large round layers frosted, and the dinosaur prepped on top, and the decorating began…

Way too many hours later, it was finally done. I don’t know how anyone does this for a living!

And the trip down memory lane? My son and his wife and son are living in the house we raised him and his sister in. They are giving to thought to moving back down to Sonoma so he can go back to school. He is unable to find a job in his field, so he’s looking at a second degree. That leaves us considering selling the house once again. It is just too much work for us any more, and too far to go for a weekend trip.

I thought I was good with selling it. The interior has been completely remodeled since the kids left home, and looks little like it did when they lived there. But all the upgrades were just what I wanted, back before I realized we never live here again. And then I wandered around out in the backyard, and began misting up.  I put tons of blood (yes, actual blood!) sweat and tears into putting in the gardens after our trip to Scotland and seeing the fabulous gardens there. There is the tree we planted when Hannah was born, the swing set my kids played on as children, and is now used by the grand kids. My hyacinth vines are getting bigger and winding beautifully up the trellis. I have a rusty old gate that I’m not sure will fit in my garden in my new home, but I don’t know how I can part with it. Maybe I can make it fit if I get rid of some of the newer pieces? I don’t know. It’s hard.

Having this place has made it unnecessary to make decisions about getting rid of all the stuff from our old life. The table we sat around for so many breakfasts and dinners. The collection of old bottles that fill the spacious bookcases. Even the mixer I used to make Joshua’s cake was a wedding gift from over 40 years ago.

I have a new house, filled with matching stuff that I picked out in keeping with my current taste. I have little room to bring these old things into the new environment. And when I’m sitting in my recliner in my new house, I feel content. I love my new house. I love my new “stuff.” I’m not wishing it was all the old things I’m looking at.

So why is it so hard to let it all go?

Day #21 CED – On The Road Again!

Another travel day…

Headed up to the mountains for our grandson’s birthday party.

Yesterday I ran all over town trying to find the cake pan I needed for his dinosaur cake. Silly me, I thought it was going to be easy, but I was wrong. I had about decided to just use a rectangular cake and draw out the dinosaur, but was feeling so guilty about failing on plan A. So, I called Hobby Lobby (my absolute last place to try!) just on the off chance that they might have it, and lo and behold they did. I dashed out to grab the last one in the whole area! Woohoo! Maybe my love affair with Hobby Lobby isn’t QUITE over!

Hard to believe all this stuff will turn into a darling cake!

Joshy had a prize for me! They were at the nursery getting flowers and mommy saw these metal flowers. She said we should get this for Gaga (pointing to a brown one) and Josh said, “No, Gaga likes red, we need to get her the red one!”

What a sweetie pie!

Then I got to meet Bootsie, my new grandkitty! She’s a sweetie pie, too. Gawgs picked her up and she started purring! I felt so loved!

Can’t wait to start on cake bakin’ and decoratin’ in the morning!

Day #20 CED I’m Losin’ It!

Yep, I’m losin’ it…the weight, that is!


I have had an unhealthy relationship with food for quite awhile. Then in January of 2011, I finally got serious about getting the weight off. Over the course of the next few months, I lost thirty pounds. Then I got  a little lazy and slacked off a bit, not losing any more, but not gaining any either.

Then I broke my ankle, and trips to the gym were history. Slowly I started to gain a bit back, but not enough to be alarming. Then I injured my back in a rafting accident, followed shortly by a rattlesnake bite, and before I knew it, I had put back on about thirteen of those hard fought lost pounds.

Some friends put together a little weight lost support group on line, and it took me awhile to start showing progress, but I stuck with it and started heading in the right direction. They came up with a nifty idea of counting out tokens to represent the pounds we wanted to lose, and putting them in a jar, then moving them from one jar to the other as we lost the weight.

My plan was to get back to the weight I was at after losing the original thirty before beginning to count the tokens (in my case these sweet buttons.) And so my jars sat and sat and sat, as I slowly went down.

Then all of a sudden, I finally made it! I am 1.4 pounds down from that original thirty, and get to transfer a button to the empty jar! Woohoo!

I’ve got a long ways to go (it doesn’t look like as many buttons as it really is!) but I’m making progress.

And the best part? My unhealthy relationship with food is a part of the past. It has been over a month since I put anything in my mouth that I didn’t intend to go there. No emotional or stress eating at all, not even through some trying times. I have been off sugar, off cheese (my biggest downfall!) and have been eating to live, not living to eat.

Next stop? Goal weight!

Day #19 CED – How Do You Cope?

We all have our coping mechanisms. The things we do that get us through hard times.

Mine is that I am able to compartmentalize things. If there is something I can’t deal with, I have a place in my mind where I store it until I am able to. I picture it much like a bank vault where they keep the safe deposit boxes.

This is the organized part of my brain (the other part looks more like an office with all the file drawers emptied out all over the floor, but we’ll save that for another day!)

Each box holds something that I’m not quite ready to let go of yet, but that would be be too paralyzing if I kept them out where I can see them all the time.

I married Mr. Tattered when I was only nineteen, and he had a dangerous job. Every day (or night) when he left for work, I never knew if it was the last time I would see him. I think that is when I started using the boxes. I just tucked the fear in there where I couldn’t see it, and I didn’t have to look at it until I wanted to.

Then I learned that in addition to keeping fears in there, I could keep hurts and worries, too. And over the years, I filled many of them.

When my brother was killed in a motorcycle accident, my grief got stuffed in one.

My kids each grew up to also have dangerous jobs, and into the boxes my fears related to them were stored as well.

When my mom died, more grief stored away. When my daughter died, same thing.

Each box has a lock, and mostly I have to mentally use the key to get these things out when I need to visit. Once in awhile I toss something, never to be worried about again, but mostly they are just in there, tucked away. Waiting.

Sometimes to the casual observer, I am “too” able to not think about things. I may seem, at times, like something that should be bothering me a lot, doesn’t. And that isn’t the case at all. It just means I’ve put it in its box so that I can function.

Yeah, I know. Nothing creative going on today – been too busy stuffing things into boxes.

Do you have a coping mechanism? How is it working for you?

Day #18 CED – Today I’m Creating Memories

We met up with the kids (and some friends of the family) in South Lake Tahoe this morning. They’ve been camping for a few days, so we went out (from the comfort of our rented condo!) to see their set up and visit.

It was pretty impressive. They have invested in a lot of equipment to make camping less rigorous, but it’s still a little primitive for us!

The girls have obviously been having a blast! Bea is the head pine cone collector, and is very good at it. She very carefully tried to avoid getting sap on her hands, and enlisted Gaga’s help carrying them.

We had a nice morning hiking and just hangin’ out.

Later in the evening Da’ wanted to show the girls a big ol’ giant yellow jacket nest. On the way, Hannah got cold and I zipped her into my jacket! But the laughing didn’t last long, ‘cuz Hannah got stung by one of said yellow jackets…

Fortunately she had no allergic reaction. It took lots of ice and cortizone cream, but she finally calmed down. Poor dear.

I love these little trips, and look forward to many more – but without the yellow jackets!

Day #17 CED – I Needed This

There are some days when you just need a double dose of beauty.

I landed back in Sacramento mid-day from my trip to Minneapolis. I had good flights, but no matter how you cut it, a day flying is a long day. (Oh, and note to self, don’t wear a blinged out tee-shirt to the airport unless you are into getting groped – she was nice, but seriously? My rhinestones are loaded with dynamite or C-4?)

Cool sculpture in baggage claim…

Only to get home, dump out my small suitcase, repack and head out on the two-hour drive to Lake Tahoe.

Hill near where we’re staying…I’m overdosing on textures!

I’m exhausted, and my mind is whirling.  It was a long, and tiring 5 days away. Staying in sounded good, but, the idea was to do something OTHER than sit and surf around on the net, so we went out to dinner (yummy Thai – and yes I was a good girl – ate very little!) and on the way back to the condo, were treated to this beautiful sunset. Just think, if I had given in to the urge to stay in, we would have missed it!

It was truly spectacular!

It reminded me to stop and be in the moment…

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