coping, finding my way, leap of faith, life goes on, perseverance, photography, simple things

Validation…

When I was newly divorced, give or take 40 years ago, I drove my ex-husband and his then girlfriend now wife, crazy.  I called him.  A lot.  No, not to fix a plumbing leak or anything.  I called because I found the day-to-day responsibility of raising the kids to be a bit overwhelming.  We were a Navy family, living far away from all family, and having few friends.  No one else knew my kids well besides him.  And what if I dropped dead?  He would have to take the kids on immediately and I wanted him to know where they were ‘at’.  I needed to feel that he was up to speed with them. So when an issue had come up and I had handled it I would call him, tell him what had happened and how I had handled it, and he would always tell me I had handled it just right and he wouldn’t have changed anything.  If a divorce can be a good thing then we had a good divorce.  I needed validation.

Which all came to mind this morning when my soft-boiled eggs turned out perfectly.  I must still be seeking validation because I get quite pleased with myself when that happens, and I feel like the universe has given me a little pat on the back.  And then I won my very first game of solitaire this morning.  I have a solitaire-playing friend who suggested that my shuffling skills aren’t the greatest, but I choose to be encouraged that my life-changes that are underway have me on the right track.  In spades!  I’ll take validation any way I can get it.

faith, finding my way, home, leap of faith, life goes on, perseverance, photography, progress, Uncategorized

Just call me crazy…

Someday I will pack the last box, load it into the car, and drive it to the tiny little mobile home that will allow me to be a snowbird.  But until that happens I am making multiple trips a day, loading and unloading, and then bringing home the empty boxes only to fill them up again.  And the unloading doesn’t mean that things are all put away.  That everything-in-it’s-place thing hasn’t happened.  And I’m itching to go to work on curtains, but I’m fighting that thought, for now.  Because back at home there is still endless stuff to deal with, it sometimes doesn’t seem like I’ve made a dent.  A friend posted something on Facebook today that would be the perfect solution.  She said take all the stuff you want to get rid of and box it into Amazon boxes and leave them on the front porch!  LOL.  But the new little place is starting to look like something.  I’m encouraged.  So I’ll be heading north one of these days, in spite of the cold and snow.  Just call me crazy…

finding my way, leap of faith, life goes on, live and learn, photography, Uncategorized

When is a sunset not a sunset?

When it’s just the sky on your way home from work at 5 PM.  Pretty enough, but no place to stop for a nice picture.  And no camera with you, well, besides your phone.  And Ozzie patiently waiting for you to come home, as if you arriving home was going to mean fun for him.  It wasn’t.  Working on your feet from 8 to 5 is pretty darn tiring these days.  Or maybe it’s like being on short time in the service, because I know I only have a week more to work and I’m done.  And yes, there are mixed emotions associated with this.  I will miss my co-workers who were there for me these last four years as I figured out how to keep on going on my own.  Work was my social life, and I was happy to be home every night.  And then I wasn’t.

This mental turning point took me by surprise.  A friend describes hiking all the 4,000 ft peaks in the White Mountains, and how when you get to the top it can be extremely cold and windy, and you have to struggle to cross that peak and get to the tree line on the other side to find shelter from the weather.  I have never climbed mountains, but I found myself realizing that the safe little harbor that I’ve been enjoying wasn’t going to sustain me in the long run, and that presented an emotional hurdle that I’ve found to be the mental equivalent of crossing that mountain peak. First to face the reality of the situation, and then to resist the urge to stick my head in the sand and do nothing.  Or I could venture into the unknown, so to speak.  But I’ve gotten there, I have rolled the dice even though I have no idea what’s next, besides the movers coming today to move the few larger items that I’m bringing with me to my tiny new Florida home.   Tiny home and tiny expenses, and time to have an adventure or two.  I’m just a fireman’s daughter who has been telling myself that being all tucked in at home was all I needed to be happy.  But maybe there is more…

coping, courage, finding my way, life, life goes on, old dogs new tricks, photography, progress

Moving forward…

I have been telling myself that I’m very lucky to be in the midst of what might be the longest ever move in history.  Not in miles, it’s 14 miles between houses.  But the fact that I have access to both houses means that for several weeks now I’ve been moving boxes, and taking pictures off the wall and loading them into the car, and boxing up dishes, and driving them to the new place, and then unloading them.  It ought to feel like I’m getting somewhere, but I’m not sure that it does quite yet.  Consequently I have lined up movers for what, for them, will be the easiest, fastest move in history.  They’ll only be moving the biggest, heaviest, pieces that won’t fit in the car even if I could carry them myself.  I signed documents online to set this up, page after page of electronic signatures.  Heaven knows what exactly I signed.  And then I read the fine print.  All the things the home owner is responsible for, and that failure to live up to your responsibilities will result in a higher-than-quoted bill.  And so I will place the mattresses in mattress bags, turns out uHaul had them, and somehow wrap the biggest TV in such a way that it meets their expectations.  But what really had me scratching my head was the insistence that the homeowner shrink-wrap any leather furniture.  So my leather recliner, which I love, will have to be shrink- wrapped by me.  But again, it was uHaul to the rescue.  I’ll bet that if I had called them for advice in the first place they could have handled the whole thing.  But little by little things are moving along.  Physically, of course, but what’s more exciting is that my life is moving forward…

a second look, birds, coping, Florida wildlife, home, life goes on, nature, old dogs new tricks, perseverance, photography, progress, technology

Why now?

Why has the urge to write again become so irresistible at this particular moment in time?  I already have too much to do, what with downsizing again, and getting ready to head up north as soon as I can organize myself to hit the road.  I remember when we tried to pin-point when exactly we could see the changes in my MIL that would herald her onset of Alzheimer’s.  And I thought it was the move she made at almost exactly my age.  She was living in an apartment temporarily, and had most of her things stored at her daughter’s house, so when she seemed scattered it was quite understandable.  But she never was quite herself again.  Not that I think I’m diagnosable, but right now I have one foot in my house and the other one out the door, and that seemed like the perfect time to go out and buy the heavy duty tripod and Gimbal head for my camera.  The better to take advantage of my last days of heading out the back door to see what I could see out back.  And in anticipation of the photos of snowy landscapes I see in my future.  In this case I was happy I had invested in the tripod when an Anhinga was the backyard visitor yesterday.  Or was it the day before…11-8anhinga211-8anhinga311-8ibis1The Ibis are out back daily, and in large numbers, so I mostly ignore them.  But this guy caught my eye…

a second look, life goes on, nature, old dogs new tricks, pelicans, perseverance, photography, the big picture

I’ve missed you…

Yes, I abandoned the blog of my own free will, but it didn’t cease to exist like I thought it would.  No, daily I receive notices of someone enjoying a post they’ve somehow come across out there in the universe.  And notices of a few new followers here and there, and I feel badly.  Lately I’ve been wanting to write but I’ve been fighting it.  Not knowing how often I might write, and not wanting it to take over my life again.  So for now I guess this is me, on a comeback of sorts, just making my way in life one day at a time.  If such a thing as a Snow Bird existed I’d insert a picture of one here.  But that’s what I will be in the very near future.  Based on the beautiful Nature Coast of FL, but on any given day who knows where I’ll be…

In my endless packing, which seems to get me exactly nowhere btw, I came across the money from my yard sale.  Money I had forgotten about.  And since I’m liable to do just about anything in this moving frenzy I seem to be in, the fact that I had forgotten about that money meant just one thing, it was time to spend it!  So my retail therapy happened yesterday, and I’m now the proud owner of a new Manfrotto tripod with a Gimbal head.  (Trust me, it’s a good thing.)  I was at Pasco Camera, for those nearby, and Jim couldn’t have been nicer.  I was at his mercy really, I knew I needed ‘better’ but that was about all I knew.  When I finally made a decision and it came time to pay him I took the baggie full of $1s out of my purse, my yard sale stash, and started counting them out.  I assured him that I wasn’t a stripper, just in case he was wondering, and he cracked up.  And says there is a new camera club in Brooksville that he just joined and said he’d send me the information.  I’ll pass that info along to my northern (FL) photo chicks when I get it.

So off I went to search for the eagles I’ve photographed before.  Their former nest is gone, but a new one is under construction.  But they weren’t around so I moved on to the Anclote fishing pier, determined to try out the new huge lens/better tripod combination.  Again, things were quiet until you could see churning a large area of the surface of the water.  Then mullet, hundreds of them, all jumped out of the water at once, sending the pelicans into action.  I hope I would have figured it out eventually, but another observer pointed out the young dolphin who was chasing that school of mullet.  I really wanted to get spectacularly better photos with the help of the new tripod, and maybe I will one day, with lots more practice.  I was glad to be out with the camera, but all that endless mess was still waiting for me at home…