Sunday, June 29, 2014

The School of Life, Week 8

The School of Life

Happy Sunday!  Boy am I late to the party today :)  I hope you're all enjoying an amazing weekend.  If you've got some free time, link up with Mariah, Miriam and I for some schooling.  I think this week is a good one for me.  Lots of life lessons all about relationships.  Let's get started.

1. It's so freeing to just be yourself and let people see the real you.  Sure, it's scary at first, but in the long run, it's the only way to go when forming new relationships.  I use to mold myself into who I thought I should be in this crowd or in that crowd.  God that's exhausting and ultimately unfulfilling.  We all do it though, no?  Last August (probably before any of you were here) I wrote about feeling unsatisfied with existing friendships.  Since then building real friendships has jumped to the top of my priority list and made me rethink how I go about things. 

Last night Dar and I attended a party hosted by some new friends.  This was our first time being invited into their home.  As we pulled into their neighborhood the street was lined with cars, party goers.  It's normally a bit intimidating walking into a crowd of 60 people you don't know.  That was not the case here.  Everyone was so welcoming, so open minded, so tolerant.  Dar even played Slayer on the world coolest jute box which was followed by some Snoop and then the Village People.  Such a diverse and accepting crowd.

I came home on an absolute high and in complete ah of the friendships that these new friends have built over the years.  Young, old, married, single, employed, unemployed, tall, short, all done up, in a tee shirts and jeans, wild and crazy, calm, rich, not rich.  It was so refreshing to just be me and not worry about what anyone was thinking.  That happened only because everyone else there was doing the same thing.  Lose the facade my friends. 

2. Old friendships with people who knew you before you were anything will put the biggest smile on your face.  Clearly I'm not talking about being famous, rich or powerful when I say "knew you before you were anything".  What I mean by that is, when you're in college/high school, you really know very little about yourself.  At least I didn't.  It was a carefree time.  A time where I wasn't bound by self inflicted rules.  I went wherever the wind blew me, whenever the wind blew me.  I'm not stupid though.  I know that for every morsel of wonderful that time in my life brought, it also brought complete and utter confusion, epic mistakes, and feelings of being out of control.

With all of that said, there's something about spending time with people who knew me back when that just puts a smile on my face.  It takes me back to all the good that was that time in my life.  The bad associated with that time is gone though because I'm older and wiser now.  Thirty two more days until I meet Yo in San Francisco! 

3. Sometimes you just have to duke it out.  Every once in a while things will come to blows in the Kerns house.  We'll have to get into a knock down, drag out fight to get all the ugly out before we can move forward.  Marriage isn't always easy folks.  Anyone who's ever been married will tell you that.  What I do know however is that nothing worth having in this life is easy.  Stick it out.   

And now, just a random question before I go.  Do you think it's inappropriate to wear a white dress to a wedding?  Is white reserved strictly for the bride?  What if it's the bride's second wedding?  And what about red?  Is red too much for a wedding?  I'm trying to avoid buying a new dress for the wedding D and I will be attending next week and my two best options are white and red.  Let me know your thoughts.  Until next time.  Love to all.

Friday, June 27, 2014

It's A Good Day!

=It's A Good Day Linkup

It's a regularly scheduled work day and I'm at home, even if it means I have to work on Saturday.

I get to pick Darren up from the airport after he's been out of town for work all week.

It's warm enough to use the pool!

I can find my tweezers.

My nail polish isn't chipped.

I actually make it to the gym.  It feels so good but I still can't seem to make it more than once a week.

Beeps doesn't hiss at or scratch me.

The latest Nordstrom catalog arrives in the mail.

I have something yummy to eat at a new restaurant.

I get an email from a new reader who loves Brass Honey :).

I get to enjoy my morning coffee and am not feeling rushed because I hit snooze one too many times.

Now do tell, what makes it a good day for you?

Thursday, June 26, 2014

While The Cats Away, The Mice Do Play!

So Darren's traveling for work this week and in less than 72 hours I've managed to:

Stay up past midnight three nights in a row.  I'm normally in bed by 10:00.

Spend $200 at Pottery Barn.

Have every window in the house open while the AC is running.  I love fresh air, but I like to be cool too.  #shameless

Have a friend over to the house.

Throw caution to the wind by eating chips and drinking wine in bed.  Oh wait, that happens when he's here too.  Only, wait for it...there's nobody to complain about crumbs in the bed!

Eliminate the use of dishes.  Other than my wine glass of course.  I will add however that I've used the same glass two nights in a row.  Eating over the sink isn't half bad :)

Realize that taking the trash out to the curb sucks.  I should have thought about that this weekend when we loaded 4 cans full of yard waste.  When Dar dies, I'm moving to a condo with a trash chute.

Become addicted to yet another totally shitty reality show, Ladies of London.

Grocery shop like a weirdo: wine, candy, chips, fresh bread lunch meat and persian cucumbers?

Treat myself to fancy coffee drinks every morning.

Miss my man.  After the second night I was more than ready for D to come home.  I'm especially missing him today, on his 42nd birthday!  It sucks not celebrating with him.  We'll be sure to make up for it this weekend!

So now, two things I need to know from you:
1. How do you spend your time when your man's away?
2. My grocery store visit was clearly ridiculous.  What are your staple items when you're flying solo?

Saturday, June 21, 2014

A Half Written Post

The School of Life
1.  I got a notice in the mail today from the DMV letting me know that it's time to renew my drivers license.  Because I'm legally blind I'm required to take a behind the wheel test every two years.  It's a real blast let me tell you.  No matter how many times I take the test, I'm always a mess leading up to it.  In fact, between now and August I will most likely be a total wreck worrying about how my life would be if I wasn't able to drive.  Driving is a privilege, not a right.  Remember that.

2.  Sometimes you've just got to throw caution to the wind and live life.  One of Darren's college buddies is getting married in Colorado over the Fourth of July holiday.  We've been going back and forth on whether or not we should go.  Of course we want to, but traveling over a holiday is always so much more expensive.  We're still paying off vet bills blah, blah, blah.  It's kind of nice to just say fuck it sometimes and do the things you want to do even though you know they aren't the most responsible.  Here we come Denver!

3.  I'm spread too thin and I need to focus on me.  You guys, I know this is really abrupt, but I've been working on this post for the last two days trying to force something out and there's just nothing in me to give right now.  There's way too much going on in my brain.  Thoughts are swirling around like leaves in the wind and I can't seem to catch a single one of them.  I haven't been taking very good care of myself since we lost Poochie so I'm going to go and do that now. 

I hope you're all well.  XO 

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Call Ya On Tuesday

So I'm super excited and am going to go all PDA on you guys right now. Mariah and I talked on the phone for the first time last night and it was great.

My thoughts before our call:
1. Oh god, what if I don't like her.
2. OH GOD, what if she doesn't like ME!
3. How many Shannon type things will I say that will offend her or will make me sound like a total snob?
4. God, I hope it's not all awkward with lots of dead silence?

My thoughts after our call:
1. This person is meant to be in my life.
2. I'm so glad she has an southern accent.
3. Mariah is really funny!
4. I can't wait for our next call and to get to know her better.

Three thing D said after I told him we spoke:
1. Oh god, you didn't give her your social security number or anything did you?
2. Did it sound like she was calling from Nigeria.
3. She didn't ask you for your credit card number did she?

Now, because I think people do all kinds of strange things while they're on the phone, I will confess the weird things I do.  I'll point out my poor phone etiquette too. They'll be a star next to the things I did while talking to Mariah last night.

*I talk over people (I hate it).  It's not that I don't want to hear what the other person has to say or that I think what I have to say is more important.  It's just that I get so excited sometimes.  I'm like a puppy chasing it's tale.  I also have a tendency of forgetting things so I blurt out whatever’s on my mind immediately.  If I don't, POOF, it's gone.

I go to the restroom.  Number one and two. So that the person I'm talking to doesn't know I'm going to the restroom, I'll either flush the toilet and run out of the room, or, I'll flush the toilet and then run the water at the sink on full blast.

I bathe.

I pluck my chin hair.

I surf the web.

*I talk to my cats in baby voices.

*I pace the house, I just can't seem to sit still while I'm on the phone.

Now I need to know, have you guys chatted on the phone with your best blog buddies? What types of weird stuff do you do while on the phone???

Saturday, June 14, 2014

The School Of Life Linkup, Week 6

The School of Life

I hope you're all enjoying your weekends.   It's almost Sunday here in Californian so that means it's time for a little Sunday school.  Please do me a favor and share your life lessons in the comments below, or even better, link up with Mariah, Miriam and I.  So what did life have to teach me this week?  Let's get right to it. 

I'm a weekend blogger.  I write all my posts, read all of your posts and respond to e-mails, on the weekends.  You probably already know that though because instead of getting 1 comment from me here or there, you get like 3 at once :).  Blogging didn't start out that way, but I realized this week that it's been like that for awhile now.  My darn jobs getting in the way of my hobby!

Holidays and occasions aren't the time to speak to the people you don't speak to.  You might not know this, but I don't communicate with my parents.  Well intentioned people who know this to be the case are always asking me if I'll see them when the holidays roll around.  This weekend, "so are you going to see your dad"?  Um no, if and when I decide that our relationship is something I want to pursue it won't be on some holiday or occasion because it's expected.  It will be because I actually want to connect with them.

Marriage is all about compromise, but we all know that already don't we?  That doesn't stop us from wanting to get our way.  Dar and I have these power struggles from time to time.  When we're buying a house (I want a small condo, he wants a house with land.  When we decide to move to a new state (I want to move to CA, he wants to move to NJ).  Most recently were going back and forth trying to decide on the breed of our new kitten (he wants a Bengal, I want a Persian).  We get into these heated debates and I have to constantly remind myself that neither of us is going to agree to make a big life decision unless we're both on board.  So we end up with a house in California with a Savannah cat.  We'll eventually get there though compromise.

Speaking of marriage and relationships in general, do you know what your love language is?  I didn't until recently.  D and I both took this quiz and found it to be thought provoking.  Knowing the way your partner perseveres love is pretty cool.    

Making macaroni and cheese without butter is a bad idea.  Enough said.

That's it for this week.  Now grab a button and linkup :)

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

I'm A Thief!

I've stolen all of your hearts now haven't I?  Ba Dump Bump!

No seriously, a little over a week ago I found $25 and a Chapstick in the stairwell at work.  I did what I always do and had it in an envelope at the front desk ready for the owner to claim it. Nobody ever did though so on Monday I went out and got myself a manicure on who knows?  I now feel like a thief and am terrified of the karma that is going to come back and get me.

I may or may not have tweaked the above to make myself seem less horrible.  What really happened is that my old receptionist found the money.  It did go up to the front desk for a week and it's true that nobody claimed it.  It's also true that I spent it.  I probably wouldn't be feeling as bad as I do if I was the one that found it, but I didn't.  I'm a monster.  What would you guys have done???

On that note, I can't lie.  Like seriously, even about the littlest thing.  For example, if I go grocery shopping and sneak a few personal items in (magazines, nail polish etc.) I always end up confessing to D.  These are items I should be buying with my allowance, but instead have bought with house money.  I once hit a trash can with our new BMW and wanted like hell to lie about that too, couldn't do it.    

For the last three days I've gone without takeout for lunch or dinner.  I'm pretty sure that's a record for the year and it feels great!

My little brother called me on my way into work today.  I always love hearing from him and look forward to our weekly calls, but he suprised me by letting me know he would be down to have lunch with me today.  I squeeled like a little girl after we hung up because I was so excited.

I came home from work yesterday to find that our housekeeper had washed Poochie's blanket. Naturally I lost my shit and started sobbing uncontrollably.  Yesterday was one full week without my girl.

I'm thinking about getting a kitten already and I feel terrible about it. 

That's it for today, now go on and confess your deepest darkest secerets with me.  If you're up to it link up with the fabulous Kathy!

Vodka and Soda

Monday, June 9, 2014

We're All Going To Be Ok.

This weekend I forced myself to go through the motions.  I spent my days doing the things that make me the happiest.  On Saturday Dar and I explored a nearby beach town.  We had lunch out at this little sandwich shop known for their meatball subs.  My poor NJ born husband is always on the lookout for a descent philly and meatball sub.  We took a  long walk on the peir.  We peeked into a few shops and we bought an obscene amount of candy.  At the end of the day I still felt miserable. 

Yesterday, I gave it a go again and drove up to San Clemente to meet a friend for breakfast.  We chatted for hours at the best little strip mall cafe.  The food was amazing, the company even better.  We walked the main drag where there happend to be a car show going on.  I haven't been to a car show in...geez, maybe I've never been to a car show?  We popped in and out of shops.  We walked the pier.  We ate ice cream.  After 5 hours I drove myself home. 

On the drive  back for the first time in a month I felt like everything was going to be ok.  The grief, the stream of bad luck, it's bound to pass.  It took me a weekend of spoiling myself and doing all of the things I love to show me that, but god, I'm so thankful that I see it now.

An hour after I got into work this morning my sweet and absolutely amazing receptionist (who I only hired a few months ago) called me up to her desk.  She was in tears when I arrived and her eyes told me that her little heart was breaking.  We walked outside and through the tears she let me know that she had broken up with her boyfirend.  The boyfirend she had moved to California to be with.  This all happened over the weekend and she had decided to move back to the east coast to be with her family.  Everything about her showed me that she was struggling with her decision, but deep down I know she knew it was the right thing for her.  We all know that doesn't make it any easier though don't we? 

I could have looked at this mornings loss as yet another bit of bad luck, but I didn't.  Instread I took the opportunity to comfort someone whos heart was breaking.  It was easy for me to tell her that she was going to be ok because I knew she would be.  I've been where she is now.  My entire high school and college carrer was pretty much one devistating breakup after another.  Years from now when she's been happily marrieid for almost a decaude, she'll look back at the days like today and she'll laugh. 

I hugged her as tightly as I could and I sent her on her way with all my love and support.  The last thing she needed was to feel bad about leaving this job.  This morning really only solidified what I realized yesterday.  The truth is, life is an ocean of waves.  Sometimes they're calm and soothing, other times they'll knock you on your ass.  April was one of the best months of my life.  May was as bad as it gets.  We're all going through "this" together though, and if we keep trying, we're all going to be ok. 

On that note, I want to thank you guys for all of your emails and comments yesterday.  Your love and support literally brought me to tears.  I really don't know how to proeprly express my thanks.  You should know though that you've made me feel loved and a part of something and that my friends is as good as it gets. 

That's it for today. XO     

Saturday, June 7, 2014

The School Of Life Linkup, Week 5

The School of Life

Well I'm here, it might not be pretty, but I've made it.  If we're friends in real life or on Facebook then you most likely know that we lost Poochie on Tuesday.  Without question loosing Poochie is the greatest loss I've ever felt.  I admit that that's a strange thing to say because I lost my dad to cancer, but it's true.  There are days where I'd give anything to talk with my dad.  I wish we could have known each other as adults and not just as father and daughter.  I feel that loss and I miss him, but that it's nothing like this.

Two years before I lost my dad, I lost my grandpa.  Other than Darren my grandpa was the only person in the world who really knew me.  We had such a special relationship and he loved and accepted me completely.  No questions asked.  I don't know about you, but for me, that kind of love is rare.  The loss of that love is huge.    

I started questioning my emotional stability yesterday.  I mean to some people Poochie was "just a cat".  I know that there are people out there who love their pets like family, I'm obviously one of them, but I have to think that there's something more to it then that.  Why, because that's the way I think?

I know I haven't talked much about my childhood here.  For now it's suffice to say that it was about as stable as I would be walking on a high wire after 10 shots of whiskey.  Anyways, one of the many unstable parts of my childhood was in regards to our pets.  I can't tell you how many cats, dogs, bunnies, chickens, mice, birds, fish etc. we had.  I believe my parent's always had good intentions when they let us get said pets, but let's face it, they had a hard enough time keeping the lights on and the food in our bellies.  Our pets were always the first things to go.  I imagine them now all living together on a "farm" somewhere.

My life with Dar, which includes Poochie and Beeps, well that's the only stability I've ever known.  For the last 10 years we've worked to build the strongest foundation we could possibly build.  We've been a family of 4 for longer than I was ever a family with either of my parents and my siblings.  I know there's something to that.  This family, my family is everything to me.  I've relied on it.  I've fallen completely in love with it.  Now a part of my family has gone and I'm absolutely beside myself. 

I didn't want to wallow in the sadness here, but I don't know any other way right now.  And I can't be myself without sharing what I've learned about grief and loss this week.  I'm not proud of everything I'm about to share, but such is life.  

Grief will make you feel so empty that you'll do anything you can to get away from it.  I've cried myself to sleep.  I've drank myself to sleep.  I've taken pills.  I've smoked.  I've left work abruptly because I couldn't bare being away from the house.  I've left the house abruptly because I couldn't bare to be here.  At times I think I've literally lost my mind. 

Good friends will be there to support you, even if they don't know personally what you're experiencing.  I can't tell you how much the texts, cards, flowers and xanax have meant to me this week.  I have a few good friends that I didn't know I had before all of this.  Thank you all for showing Darren and I such love and support.

You'll do weird things to hold onto your pet.  I collected Poochie's fur from her brush and now have it in a ziploc bag. 

You can have your pet euthanized at home.  I highly recommend this and am so grateful that we discovered Paws Into Grace.  We were able to give Poochie the most peaceful departure at home, on our bed, and in the place she loved most.  It is absolutely devastating to watch your little one go, but I'm sure seeing it happen in the comfort of your home makes a difference. 

I can see why people are religious.  I'd like to believe that Poochie and I will be reunited one day.  That we'll look into each others eyes.  That we'll cuddle.  She'll of course always be in my heart, but I want more than that.

Making simple decisions will seem like rocket science.  Poochie and Beeps each got half a can of wet food in the morning and at night.  Decisions like, do we give Beeps the entire can, do we refrigerate the other half, do we throw the other half away etc. seem impossible to answer.

Knowing that you gave your pet all of your love and a good life doesn't make losing them any easier. They say that time heals all wounds.  I've experienced loss previously and I know that while it doesn't heal said wounds, things do get easier.  Life goes on so to speak.  I don't know if I want them to get easier.  For now I want to feel this loss.  Poochie was too important to me not to.Bare with me as I find my way out of the darkness and back into the light.  XO

RIP Poochie Kerns
May 26, 2005- June 3, 2014

Friday, June 6, 2014

I've Stopped Dreaming

As we were wrapping up yoga last Friday our instructor closed with this.  I made me think, after all I was feeling dispirited.  The thing is, I sing everyday.  I dance all the time and I love stories.  My Sundays spent at home alone and in the peaceful silence are everything to me.  So what else could it be? 

Then it hit me.  I've stopped dreaming.  I don't really have any goals for myself at the point in life, I've met all the goals I set for myself in my twenties.  My life is everything I always dreamed it would be and I've stopped dreaming because of it.

I have ideas, I have things I want to do, but these things don't drive me because for the most part, I'm happy where I am.

Or is that a lie?  Am I really afraid to dream because I don't think my reality will allow for it?  I want to start my own business.  I want to write a book.  I want to take amazing trips. 

I make a lot of money though and if I start my own business, that most certainly wouldn't be the case, at least not in the beginning.  And this job, the one that pays our bills, it requires my time and my attention.  It's not like I could work part time and cover things.  That's reality. 

The book, I guess that's a little more doable since I could do it in my spare time, but I don't.  Why don't I?  My practical mind tells me that it must not be that important to me otherwise I'd be doing it.

Then there are the trips.  Dar would never go with me to Paris, besides, we don't have the money for that.  If I saved the money on my own (allowances), would he be mad that I went without him?  I don't think so, but maybe, but let's be real, I don't think I would.  The bigger truth is that I can't save money.

So you see, the reality of it all stops me from the dream.  I pride myself on being a realist, but in this case, being realistic is not helpful.  As of late I've even noticed that I'm stopping others from dreaming.  D gets all starry eyed with thoughts of building rooftop decks and opening our cabana into the canyon, but before the poor guy can even get the works out, I've put the kibosh on it. 

I am dispirited because I let my dreams fall to the wayside, they aren't as big as my reality.  I don't like that.  How do you start to dream again?