Moving · Random

If My Life Were a Comedy,

it would be called, You Can’t Make this Shit UP

At the beginning of the month, my daughter moved into a new house; ok not new new, but new to her. Things started on schedule and then it fell apart.

Fred, the handyman we hired, had his own schedule. Priorities, that I thought I was pretty clear on, included hanging light fixtures, redoing the tub/shower to a shower, and installing an ADA toilet. Let’s just say, my daughter came to my house to shower for the first week and there was a late night run to Target for a floor lamp. In Fred’s defense, he did slice his finger open. To the tune of 24 stitches and an all day stint in the local ER. Oh Shit!  Apparently handymen have their own way of doing things. Who knew?

We had 4 days to move. Sounds like a lot of time, but I’m still feeling the aftermath of a broken toe and recently fell and hurt my shoulder. My daughter is disabled and has challenges being on her feet for extended periods and/or doing a lot of walking. 4 days in our case is a serious time crunch.

The guys we rounded up to move her furniture were great, but there was still a lot to pack and move. Then the obstacles started presenting themselves.

Dead car battery: 3 hours lost. And the embarrassment that comes with leaving your car on the street in a new neighborhood where the HOA rules state” No overnight street parking.” Way to make a good impression. (They were all fine with it.)

Chainsaws at 7:30 in the morning. Ok, that was my bad, but not really. Hired a company to clear out the dead bushes, trim tress etc on a small property that hadn’t had a haircut in probably a year. We agreed on 9am, they showed up at 7:30. Totally screwing up this first impression thing.

Fred’s broken key while his truck was blocking the garage and we had a car full of boxes. Did I mention it was raining/hailing. 2 hours lost. However there was the entertainment of him guiding his wife from the other side of town during rush hour in a storm.  He had her on speaker so we got to enjoy both sides of the conversation.

OH CRAP: The car plates are going to expire today and it happens to be the year you need emission testing. 1 hour lost.

Bad Paint Mix:  I thought running out of paint wasn’t going to be an issue. Run to the store, get the same paint, they mix it up with their fancy computer guided color thingy. Only when we started painting, it wasn’t the same color. WHAT? HOW? ARE YOU FRICKING KIDDING ME RIGHT NOW? Back to the paint store; 1 and half hours lost.

Last run through of the old apartment it is discovered that kitchen knives and pots and pans did not get packed. I’m calm. Not sure why or how, but I am.

We did manage to get everything done, with 2 and half hours to spare. I learned a lot about moving, which I personally haven’t done for over 25 years, and when I take that step, I’ll be a lot more prepared. Oh, who am I kidding?  I recently read that the best memories come from those things that go awry. I anticipate lots more memories.


Approaching Change

When I was working in the corporate world, we were told to dress for the job you want, not the one you have. I started to think about how that could translate to any changes in life. For example: if you want to be an artist; do the things an artist does. If you want to be healthier; act healthy. Whatever the goal or task, you are the one who needs to define it. Google is not in charge here, you are.

Right now I want to be calmer.

1. What does calm look like? Where can I be proactive? What is preventing calm?

2. Make a list. Make a chart. With COLORS! But not too long, the ultimate goal is to be successful and if the quantity of tasks outweighs their quality, I am doomed.

3. Celebrate, but be forgiving.

So that is the plan. Identify, track, fall down, get back up and applaud.


Cell Phone

Messenger Work Around

Facebook Messenger makes a lot of us nervous. The permissions required are, well just a little too many for me. So I don’t use it on my phone. Problems arise when you have friends who think you do and send you messages when you are out-of-town.  Like where and when to meet them. I have one friend who doesn’t have a cell phone. Yea, I know, but not my choice.

There  had to be a way to work around this. I dusted off my thinking cap and went to work. Didn’t take long at all. Chances are pretty high that your cell phone can connect to the internet if you can access Facebook. Instead of using the FB app, I logged onto FB from my web browser.  I use Chrome in case anyone cares.

Voila! I could get my messages just like I was at home using a non-mobile device.

I am hesitant to put this information out there, but I’m probably not the first person to discover this easy little hack. Hopefully, the FB geeks have a lot more important tasks to work on than people accessing messenger outside of their side app.


Memory Road Trip

I just completed  a 900+ mile literal memory road trip. I went to childhood homes, hangouts, schools, and cemetaries. I drove down the roads where I learned to ride a bike and drive a car. Went by the place of my first kiss, first school dance, first heartbreak, first fender bender, first legal drink, and first broken bone. Ended up on the streets where people lived that I haven’t thought about in years.

I went into buildings that I once frequented where nothing had really changed and often found new buildings where others had once stood. Drove through towns that I hardly recognized and ones that have remained the same for over 50 years. I discovered museums filled with immense history and sanctuaries of pure solitude.

I reminisced with old friends and made some new ones. Some of us have stayed put geographically, while others like myself have moved many miles away.

When the journey ended, I boarded a plane and headed home. Home. Has a nice ring to it, don’t you think? In my youth, I always considered home to be the place where I grew up. That feeling you get when you pull in to the gas station where you were still too young to drive. I thought when I moved away, that feeling would never follow me.

Home is different for me now. It is many years and miles from my youth. It is where I had my first adult job, bought my first home, married, bore my child, and traveled the legal jungle of my divorce.

Looking back, there are many places I could have ended up. I’ve even spent too many hours lamenting my choices; not any more. I am happy where I am and what I have done. I am where I am supposed to be.

I am home.



I am off to my High School Reunion this week. Anxiety is kicking in and I still need to pack. It’s been a long time since I’ve been back. I went to a boarding school, so it’s not like I’m going “home.”

The typical thoughts flood my mind: should have lost some weight, I won’t measure up to other’s successes, I won’t remember half of them, they won’t remember me.

Every school has them; The Breakfast Club breakdown.  Princess, Brain, Athlete, Basket-Case, and Criminal. Like the movie, we all share a bond. Most of us away from home for the first time; struggling with adolescence. Gravitating towards our own; forming tribes.

My hope is that time has softened the bad memories enough that we won’t hold the past against one another. The good memories will rise to the occasion and the tribes will come together in perfect harmony. We will discover that no matter how disconnected we were back then, we all had similar experiences. We will laugh and create new memories and maybe even cross the lines and form new friendships.