Welcome To My New Year

While we haven’t quite yet passed to the end of 2011, I’m already in progress on what will surely be the biggest change to impact my new year.

You see, the Good Man and I are moving house.

It’s not a big move, just a few miles away. But we are moving to a much larger place with two, count them TWO full bathrooms.

I experience waves of joy at that thought.

As the landlord is completely renovating the place (we get to move in with all new paint and floors and appliances, yay!) we won’t actually move until later in January.


Here’s the thing. I have lived in our current spot for almost eight years. The Good Man moved in almost five years back. But for me, eight long years. That’s a lot of time to accumulate crap.

A lot of crap.

Over the years, I may have been accused by friends and family of having difficulty with throwing things away.


I’m not a hoarder. Much.

I mean my place isn’t floor to ceiling with newspapers I can bear to part with, but the extra large storage space under my current place IS full of all manner of stuff that should have been thrown away or donated long ago.

It’s a lot.

The Good Man is fairly organized and keeps his stuff pretty tidy. He goes through everything about once a year and culls out, cleans out and donates.

Me. Not so much.

So laying ahead of me, I have a fabulous future with a shiny new home. It has a fireplace! And a deck. And an actual living room.

Surrounding me, I have boxes and bags and barrels of crap to sort through.

I pledged this week that I’m off work to clean out everything under the current house. So instead of enjoying my bright future, I am lost in my past.

Today I went through a huge box of papers, bills and receipts. This is my personal weak spot. For some reason I think I need to keep every receipt I ever get. The Good Man has me on a rehab plan so I don’t keep doing this.

But today I shredded the original registration papers on the Jeep I bought in 1995. The State of New Mexico charged me forty-eight dollars to register the first car I bought with my own money. I miss the days of forty-eight dollar car registration.

I traded in that Jeep on a new one in 2001. So I kept an almost seventeen year old document on a Jeep I sold ten years ago from from a state where I no longer live.

It’s like that.

I remember talking to my mom in the year after my dad had passed. She was going through everything they owned with plans to eventually sell their house and move somewhere more manageable.

In the stuff, she found a box of papers that my dad had kept. In this box were bills and receipts that dated back to the first year of their marriage. They were married for forty-five years.

Mom fired up a burn barrel and alternately cried and cursed while disposing of the stack of paper that had (unknown to her) been a part of her life for her entire marriage.

Today, as I shredded, I thought about that. I though about how mad The Good Man would be if I died and left him with all of this crap to sort through.

I have to strive to be better, to get rid of stuff more often, to keep my piles of crap under control.

This move is good. It’s a good idea to force myself to clean out my mess. It’s a good idea to have a new start.

My future is bright. But I gotta sort through my past first.

Image from The Magic Forest.

This is an early entry for this week’s Theme Thursday fun. This week’s theme = future.

Caw! Caw!

Ooooh, it’s getting a bit raven-y outside my office door right now. You see, there have been recent changes in my organization. Some of our team moved to another location, and then some people left the company entirely and weren’t replaced.

The result is, for the past three months or so, we’ve had about four open hard wall offices along my row and about six open cubicles.

Now, if you’ve ever worked at any corporate entity, you know that office space is *always* a big deal. Especially hard wall offices.

For us, it’s been great, the open offices have been used as conference rooms in a pinch, and we have plenty of hotel cubes for when people are visiting. Also, when my UK Boss comes to the states for three months every quarter, he’s able to have space to work.

It was great to have a little open space around here. But I knew it wouldn’t last.

It couldn’t last.

At this very moment, there is a coven of crows Executive Admins outside my office squabbling over the space.

My Big Boss got dragged into the middle of this since technically he owns the empty space. It should be noted that Big Boss is only about 5 foot 5 inches tall on a good hair day.

Poor Big Boss, he never stood a chance. He listened patiently for a while then said, “Just let me know what you decide” and walked away (that he can pull that off is what makes him the Big Boss…just sayin’ )

He left much cawing in his wake:

“But I need two offices for my team!”

“No! I need all of the offices, I have all directors! They can’t sit in cubes!”

“What about my team? We can fit into that space which means they can all sit together!”

“But then you have to move everyone!”

“But you can have my old space!”

“Then my team doesn’t sit together!”

Lest anyone every think differently, the true power of this company lies right there in the center of that circle of post-menopausal women.

They are negotiators, leaders, deal makers and will claw your eye out for a hard wall office on the right floor in the right corner.

They own everything that happens around here and everyone in it.

Which means I’m hunkering down in my office. Except when they look in here to check out my space. Then I sit up quite tall and make my little room look VERY occupied.

I’m scared, mommy!

Photo by Justina Kochansky, and found on the Articulate Matter Flicker photostream.


In honor of Halloween, the scariest day of the year, I figured I’d do a little mental deep dive and reveal some of my most scary nightmares.

Perhaps in the light of day they won’t seem so scary, right? Maybe I can take some of the fear out of them.

I had one of these dreams last night and found it hard to shake off. So let’s start with that one.

I’m in my car, driving too fast, and suddenly, my brakes don’t work. The pedal feels right, I’m pressing on it and it gives resistance, but the car isn’t slowing down. I grab frantically for the handbrake but that does no good. I try to take the car out of gear, but that doesn’t work….often I’m rolling down a hill. Sometimes it’s in San Francisco.

Only once in my life did I had something similar happen. I was in college and driving my dad’s old ’72 full size Blazer, and the master cylinder was going out. I rolled to an intersection, hit the brakes, and it went all the way to the floor. Yipes! I was able to get my toe under the pedal, lift it, and kept pumping the brakes until I finally stopped. I was scared, but thankfully got through that safely.

I have no idea what this inability to stop is about but it *freaks* me out. I was all jittery driving to work this morning.

I’m in danger, I turn to run, but my legs are heavy and I can’t run. I’m making a running motion but moving slower than molasses in January. I bend over and use my arms to help me run/crawl, scratching at the ground trying to get away.

I think this one is a fairly common dream. A lot of people have it. I’m not much of a runner in real life and I think this dream plays on my own insecurities about that fact. Like, if I was ever really in trouble, could I run away?


I’m in college. It’s finals week. Trouble is, there is a class that I haven’t bothered to attend all semester. I’m freaking out! What am I going to do? There is no way I can pass this class! I’m going to fail!

The class I forgot to attend is usually a math class (my absolute worst subject). Sometimes it’s accounting. Lately it’s morphed into that god awful advanced Economics night class I had in grad school.

This is such a weenie nightmare. I can’t believe how much it totally freaks me out. Oh dear, I might fail a class. Big deal!

But I wake from this dream *frantic* and freaking out.

The monsters of the mind are far worse than any creepy Halloween story, I guess.

I’m staying in a really nice hotel. I go to my room and check in. Then I leave my room for some reason, I need ice, I need to find something to eat, whatever. And then I can’t find my way back to my room. I go up and down stairs. I wander through hallways of the hotel. I keep taking the elevator and it puts me on floors I don’t recognize. The more I try to find my way back, the more lost I become. I start getting more and more frantic.

This dream often takes place in a huge Las Vegas casino (ever felt hopelessly lost inside of a huge casino in real life? I sure have.). Sometimes it takes place on a college campus or a high school building. It’s a dream of chasing my tail ’round and ’round.

Whenever I check into a hotel in my real life, I inevitably try to find landmarks so I can find my way back, owing to my whackadelic brain and this dream that recurs month after month, year after year.

Tornados. Enough said.

I’ve chronicled my own Really Bad Day dancing with a tornado in Carlsbad. I think that one afternoon left me irrevocably scarred.

Ok, of all of my frightful dreams, at least this on and the brakes going out are dreams that I can go “well yeah, that’s actually scary!”

I think the rest of my nightmares listed are pretty much crazy machinations of an over emotional brain.

To misquote Emerson, simply hobgoblins of my little mind.

Happy Halloween everyone!

Devil graphic by Viktors Kozers and used royalty free from stock.xchng.

An Open Letter to an Ugly Fire

Dear WildFire –

Hey, hey. Slow down a bit there, buddy. Why the rush?

Let’s chat, huh? Have a minute to catch our breaths and a nice cool glass of lemonade. Not into lemonade? Oh, well do you mind if I have some?

I know it’s the summer and you are feeling hot, hot, hot. Raring to go. You are young, aggressive, a go-getter. Some might say…hungry.

You chew up the terrain, expand your reach, and build your empire and leave a swath of pain, ashes and devastation in your path.

You know what, I’ve been ignoring you. On purpose.

Growing up in the dusty lands of New Mexico, I learned to take the arrival of you rambunctious wildfires as part of the natural cycle of the year. It gets hot, it gets dry, then like a rabid parasite you come to visit, leaving an indelible mark much like a drug fueled rock star in a five star hotel.

Utter destruction.

Only you don’t stick around to pay the bill. You hop another border and get to work burning down something else.

I ignore you because I’ve borne witness to the people who know how to deal with you. They efficiently knock you down, smother your ambition, and wrestle you under control. I heard you were back in town and figured you’d party your way through the cycle and you’d be knocked down soon enough. Managed. Controlled.

You’re a wily one this year, aren’t you? Nimble. Agile. Persistent.

You should know something. You’re ugly, all right? Beautifully profoundly ugly.

After seeing your face last night on my local news, my Bay Area local news, I figured maybe it was time to pay you a little attention, like a bratty child who has finally worked my last nerve.

It’s time to take a look at you like passing by a horrible accident. I don’t want to look and then suddenly I can’t seem to look away.

Damn it, WildFire. Stop. Just…stop. You’ve done enough. More than enough. It’s getting excessive.

Please stop. People’s lives, livelihood, homes, neighborhoods and towns are at stake here.

You are destroying my home state. I’m very protective of my home state.

So look. Just stop. End this. Be gone. Be done. Move along.

We’ve indulged you long enough. It’s time for you to leave.

In the vernacular of my people: don’t let the gate hit you on the way out.


This image terrifies me….

Image from New Mexico News and Views.