Monday, December 31, 2012

New Years

Having trouble realizing it's New Years. The move is definitely still front and center as we chip away at the boxes. The holiday didn't help, and we both hope we never have to move around Christmas ever again, because it really does wear on you and leave you missing the spirit.

Started taking pictures finally and realized I haven't unpacked the camera cord yet to download them, so this one's snitched from Tumblr. Les, Mom J., and I are relaxing and waiting for the ball to drop, but I'm so tired...

We ran errands today, got to see more of Asheville. Dang holiday has downtown busy...we were going to hit French Broad Chocolate Lounge, but just couldn't deal with the traffic/parking sitch.

I've been here less than a week, and we've had snow twice. The gods are gifting me nicely, making it just light enough where it doesn't leave us homebound, in spite of our lack of all-weather tires. Les bought salt for the trunk, and is putting together an emergency kit for the car. It's nice to see him take charge on certain things. He's been amazing, working through headaches, and it's helped him see what he's capable of. Certainly helps that he has family members who let their disabilities control their lives...helps him see how he doesn't want to live.

Mom J. heads back home to Aiken tomorrow. It's been a good visit for all parties concerned. We're ready to tear into the 2nd bedroom, which is harder when there's a guest utilizing it, so her departure is well-timed (plus I start work Wednesday). I'll work sites this week, organize myself, and hit the ground running next Monday. I know I said January 2nd for starting the job hunt, but given the state of the apartment still, it's more realistic to finish unpacking.

Still can't believe we don't have to go home to Florida. I voice this, and Les reminds me that this is home now. My cup runneth over!

Image from here.

Friday, December 28, 2012


There's just so much. So busy. Such physical work. The holiday. The mom-in-law accompanying us to Weaverville, such a blessing, for her and us. Unpacking, bit by bit. Kitchen nearly set. Washer/dryer arrived today. Walmart trip for provisions done, gift cards procured before and during holiday cut that bill in half. Curtains purchased, hopefully up tomorrow. Camera not unpacked yet. Master bedroom is about halfway there, guest room is a cluster. We're contemplating an entertainment center for the living room and some bookshelves. Want to investigate the Habitat for Humanity ReStore and Aaron's Rent to Own, because cash is getting...

Did I mention the washer/dryer? Oh, I did...well, let's mention those suckers again. I've been hoofing it to laundry facilities for 18 f-ing years. Mom J. has a knack for finding local stores. We found a used set for $315 and they threw in a toaster oven for $5. I'm still reveling in our good fortune.

The apartment may be older than it looks, and initially its size was a concern; but now that we're unpacking and finding places for stuff, it's quite adequate. The kitchen is a frickin' dream, amazing cabinet space and room to move around in. I want to weep with relief. Master bedroom too, room to move around in, in spite of the king-size bed. Living room still rough, will tackle that a bit more tomorrow. Mom J. sticking around til New Years' Day, looks like, and then we'll be in a better position to tackle the 2nd bedroom.

Pics soon...just so much to do. We got snow the first night, slowed down our travel just a pinch. But yesterday, I got us out to Walmart and Lowe's and around town just a bit. Today we hit the local bead shop for Mom J., and I got to visit one of the local yarn shops. Felt good to pet fiber again.

I'm dropping weight from all the activity and my body is screaming at the end of the day. I look forward to working out more gently soon. My knees were pissed the first couple of days, but today they finally gave me a breather from the pain. My right foot is another story. I've learned just how much arthritis I have, thanks to this move. The desire to retard that and find more homeopathic methods of dealing with the pain is high on my list. Luckily, I'm in the right place to investigate that further.

More soon.

Friday, December 21, 2012


Happy Solstice & Merry Yule!

The only problem I have with being adequately medicated is when it keeps the good stuff out too. I suppose I should be grateful, because the level of hyperactivity I should be feeling about how close we are (to my dream of getting the hell outta Florida), would make it hard to actually get stuff done. It's bad enough I don't have enough lists made for my liking, though it's pretty easy to take a good look around the apartment and see what still needs to be done.....

So I guess it is good that I'm on an even keel, because even with that, I'm pretty much on auto-pilot right now. Finishing up last day of work, and looking ahead to what still needs to be done. Tonight, stop by Home  Depot and pick up plastic, grab something for dinner, say goodbye to Lil Bro. Pack everything else in the house. Les is hopefully doing a chunk of that while I'm at work. Pass out at decent hour, because we need to get up at decent hour to pick up truck. Movers come at noonish. Sheer chaos for about 3 hours. Don't forget their tips, that goes on tonight's list, when I deposit the holiday bonus check. Odds and ends when they leave tomorrow afternoon...we're keeping the TV hooked up for something to do, and crashing on air mattresses. Sunday morning, we head to SC.

Christmas without Dad and Grandma...that's gonna be physically painful. I'll push those feelings out of the way by baking and helping Mom and being with her however I can. We're spending Christmas in Aiken, then heading up to Asheville on Boxing Day. I'll blow through town to stop by the rental office and square us away, get the keys, and Hubs will likely continue on to Weaverville with the truck. We meet those movers around 12 noon.

It's really happening.

I've been distracting myself when needed with two amazing new books: Homegrown & Handmade by Deborah Niemann and Home Dairy by Ashley English. Reading these is when I get the "my cup runneth over" feeling...and I think about making my first attempts at cheese in my new kitchen (small, but NOT a galley!!!), using local milk, or tucking my first seeds into fresh soil and pots. I already have the seeds to start an herb garden, bought them awhile back from Annie's. I really hope to set up a planting area near the window in the dining/kitchen area, but if not, it'll go in the 2nd bedroom, and the heck with how crowded it's gonna be in there!

Probably offline the next couple of days, understandably. When we're not doing holiday stuff, we'll be doing move stuff. I have access to the Web in SC, but hilariously, no one has figured out what the new password is for Mom J's Wi-Fi router, so I can't log onto their system with my units.

Have a wonderful holiday, y'all! Stay safe!

Images from here.

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Home stretch

Asheville could get flurries on Friday. I'm almost sorry I'll miss them. I say almost, because things get real when you're moving back to that type of weather, and we need to save for all-weather tires for the car. I swear we've barely had these tires for 20K miles and the damn things are skidding in the back since we rotated them. Makes me so angry what a throwaway society we've become.

I'll start freaking out tonight. Got a couple more boxes packed last night, and made myself a list. The lease is in my computer, just waiting to be printed and read. Looks about normal. We got lucky and the rent is a little lower than originally listed! Can't tell yet if they'll let me string a clothesline or plant outside. Cat fee is lower than I thought it would be too.

Hubs brought up the point that we should empty the closet tomorrow night so the cat has someplace to be when the movers are here. It's a good idea, so I'll probably be doing some moving around and breaking down of furniture tonight, to get a head start. Shit's getting real.

Doing this over the holiday really does blow. It's an itch I can't scratch. This time of year, I'm baking up a storm to supplement presents, and I want to be making wreaths or at least decorating with pine, testing whether or not Les is still allergic to it. I want to have a pantry of canned goods to use as presents. I'm thinking ahead to strawberry season already, and I want to find a decent salsa verde recipe. Amanda's been cross-stitching lately, and the intricacy of that craft interests me too. I'm ready to be settled in a new place.

Jenna's post was thoughtful today. The way she describes riding horseback, is the way I remember feeling when I used to ride a bike. Given we're moving back to hills, I'm not nearly in shape to bike right now, so it's fine that I don't currently own one, but that's something else that will be saved for in the next year. If nothing else, this year will be teaching us true frugality. I"m scared right now, but determined to do well. Christmas bonus was a pleasant surprise (little bigger than usual), so it's going right in savings for February's rent. I just know that while life is dragging its arse right now, once we're there, we'll blink and January will be gone. I pray I'm gainfully employed (more better) by then.

I'm expecting Les to sleep in on the 27th, but I just know if my body's not completely spent, I'll be out walking, getting to know my new neighborhood. Our rent is just low enough to spook me about the area in which we're moving to, but given how small the town is, I'm not too worried. I'm used to living in slightly depressed conditions, and our building is at the beginning of a road that leads to a trailer park, so we're not talking luxury here. But we're also talking about a town that hasn't had a murder in at least 10 years. I'll take it. :)

Image from here.

Monday, December 17, 2012

Need a little...

Can I wallpaper the apartment with this picture?

It doesn't feel like Christmas this year, or Yule, or whatever nearly-atheists celebrate. The move is completely front and center, and the holidays are just a hiccup in between next week. We'll exchange pressies and eat well, and then breathe a sigh of relief.

I'm pretty OK with that, because I'm planning to spend January building a home. It will have seasonal touches and a lot of warmth, even though we're exchanging one box for another, even though there's still no yard, even though...

I always get reverse-seasonal-affective this time of year, so there's that too. Cranking up to frickin' 80 here today. Though to hear Yankees tell it, there's not much winter there yet, this winter either. Very little snow and unseasonably warm. I rage with what humans are doing to the planet....and how blind so many still are to the effects of our actions.

Recycling is only open in our area on the weekends, so we're putting more in the trash this week. That blows, but it can't be helped. We're already carrying too damn much "stuff" to NC; can't afford to bring our recyclables too...though I can see the argument that the planet can't afford for us not to. Sigh. Maybe I'll atone when we get there, with a compost bin and a rain barrel...have to see, though; we live just close enough to the Blue Ridge where a compost bin, even a closed one, could attract bears. This mostly amuses me.

Under the heading of "Toto, this ain't gonna be Kansas," I realized that we're likely too far from civilization to get decent pizza delivery, but that we're in the right ZIP code to pay a bit more and get local milk (and other products) delivered to our door. I hope we can budget that in, because it looks worth the dough, and I damn sure don't want to be hitting up the local Walmart out of laziness when for pennies more, we can get stuff straight from local farms. It's so time to walk the talk!

We've purged and purged, and I just know that as we unpack next week, there are going to be more piles of "wow, why do we still have this?". Hope we can find a local bookstore that takes trade-ins...and thrift stores...and Goodwill...and.....I'm crossing my fingers that we can find inexpensive bookshelves at the local Habitat ReStore.

I'm coming back around from being off the Paxil, new scripts in hand and more meds on the way, all's right with the world. Body almost done aching, though it's hard to tell the difference, because I'm getting a lot more physical activity these days...waking up refreshed, but falling into bed whipped. At least my jeans almost fit again.

So much still to do...wish I didn't have to work this week. Lord, I'm gonna miss the money and security though...we're feeling keenly the concern of not having medical insurance, even just for 2 weeks (or gods forbid, 2 or 3 months). And of the paychecks being even less steady than they are now. I know there's no point in looking for work next week, not really...between unpacking and the holidays, the temp agencies will barely be open...never mind that this is a significant move and we'd be smart to stay in, unpack, get settled, turtle a bit, explore slowly, and get acclimated. But you can bet that January 2nd, I'm hitting the ground running.

Image from here.

Friday, December 14, 2012

In Memory

I'm pretty sure the only reason I'm not a full Buddhist, is because of my recognition that the world that Buddhism aspires to won't happen in my lifetime. This knowledge makes it hard to find peace, which is ironic, given that that's all that the religion espouses.

I'm deeply saddened by today's events in Newtown, CT. I was born in Norwalk, we lived there til I was 5...then we moved north to New Milford, where we stayed til I was 11. Newtown is just east of Danbury, about halfway between Norwalk and New Milford. It feels like some asshole strafed my old stomping grounds, never mind that so many children, babies really, have died.

I get that a small part of this reaction is the lack of Paxil coursing through my brain. But really, it's more than that. Something has to make these tragedies real for a person, for things to sink in properly. When I first learned of Columbine, my reaction was almost one of indifference; just another painful reminder that there are sick people out there. Then I saw the movie Dawn Anna, and that tragedy took on the appropriate level of realness in my head. I guess that's just how it happens sometimes. Today, even though I haven't lived in CT since 1986, even though I have no children of my own, even though my family members up there are all accounted for...I mourn.

Since I don't have children of my own, I want to hug the children of others today. I want to hug my nephew and niece, and my friend Alexa's girls, who I haven't had the pleasure of meeting yet, and my friend Maureen's girls, and Lynn and Michelle's grandbabies. Let's toss Huxley in there too, and Amanda's gorgeous brood. Because it's about the little ones this time...they're talking about this as the 2nd worst school shooting in US history (after VA Tech), and all I can think is VA Tech doesn't count, that was college...I know all deaths in this manner are wrong, but dammit, today we're talking about babies.

I swear I'm talking myself into full Buddhism as I write this.

P.S. Picking up more Paxil tonight...should be rallying in another 48 hours or so...thank the gods!

Image sources on my Tumblr.

Thursday, December 13, 2012


Not a holding pattern, mind you...just holding.

Gotta love how time falls certain events seem to conspire to fuck you. Nothing I can do about it now, but yet another thing to set on the list of "let's not let this happen again, whaddayasay?"

Move's still on target, no problems there.

Hubs has been carefully and smartly hoarding his meds for the last 3 months or so, in anticipation of this move. We won't have medical insurance initially, so this was necessary; he's on opiates and doesn't ever want to cold-turkey off those suckers again. (sidenote: last time he detoxed cold turkey, we were attending my ex-boyfriend's wedding. Further proof that God's a comedian.)

You'd think after oh, 15 years of being medicated myself, I'd have learned from his example. But my meds are much "easier" to get (read: not class II narcotics), so I tend to take them for granted. So when I went to the doc last month and asked her for a 3-month Rx for both of them, she said no problem and forwarded it to Walgreen's. I noticed my Rxs were coming due, and rang Walgreen's to see if the insurance had accepted them. Sure enough, they hadn't, which meant I would need to get them via mail order. OK, no problem, just place the order and then they contact the doc's office to fax the Rxs. And here's where relying on others bites you in the arse...for reasons beyond my control or understanding, the doctor's office has not sent the new Rxs to the mail order place. I've given them the fax number, left multiple voicemails and messages, and nothing's happened. If still nothing happens today, I'm thinking I'll have to show up on their doorstep before work tomorrow and fax the bloody things myself. Because here's the kicker: so much time has passed in this process, that I'm starting to detox from the Paxil. sshhh...haven't told Hubs yet...he gets ornery when this happens...

This isn't so bad this time...yet. I've been weaning, and I know what to expect. But still, it makes me want to wear a sign that says...

"Hello. I'm detoxing from Paxil. Please don't take it personally if I offer a completely irrational response to something you say. Actually, here's a better idea: just don't fucking bother me for the next week."

Sidenote #2: Late moon cycle just arrived today too. Insert maniacal laugh track here. Think Hubs will take exception to me having Yellowtail and Mallomars for dinner?

Image from here

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

New, much nicer holding pattern.....

The week creeps by...I'm catching a smidge of OT, probably for the last time here...not gonna want to grab any next week, will be a tad busy...waiting on lease...doing online shopping here and there for xmas...we're both procrastinating a pinch as we plod thru this week, but I'm sure the weekend will be something quite different...thinkingthinkingthinking...need to budget a needs shots...wondering about a tranq for the trip too, for her...she's fine on long trips, so long as you can put up with a solid hour of meowing when you first start out...squeezing out some Y workouts before my membership ends...trying to eat meals from home...thinking about Michelle and Lynn...don't see them too often here, but I will definitely miss them...gotta call Cyril too, not sure Lil Bro knows we've solidified things...he works so darn much...wish his life weren't so hard...

Image from here.

Monday, December 10, 2012


Yea, OK, too busy to count down, actually...besides, that'll probably make me even more twitchy than I currently am.

Not twitchy, actually...more like high. My thoughts bounce around quite a bit.....

Security deposit received by rental agency! Lease on its way!

Going to Y later, pants getting loose workout regimen: pack all your belongings into boxes and hoist them to places in your apartment when you're not actually in shape to be performing that task. I've got a spot in my middle back that's a little angry, but mostly I just feel strong.

It won't feel like Christmas this year. It can't really. Even if we weren't moving, Les's family has had too much loss this past year to even know how to celebrate. Mom J. will celebrate by spending too much money as we get closer to the holidays...the rest of us will fake it. I look ahead to next year, because I doubt we'll actually be ready to move again a year from now, and if that's the case and we can renew where we're landing, then I will decorate and celebrate next year. It's been years since we've put the tree up; we probably need a new one. I'll have the whole wonderful outdoors to decorate with.

If my books weren't completely inaccessible, I'd dig out "Bunny Rabbit Concert" by Lawrence Welk. That would help get me in the mood; it's not a Christmas book per se, but it has awesome artwork. Also, I believe there will be a downloading (if possible) at some point of "Emmet Otter's Jug Band Christmas." I'd ache for Dad while reading/watching those, but it's so worth it.

Image from here.

Sunday, December 09, 2012

Seriously, who moves @ frickin' Christmastime?

Apparently lots of people...almost couldn't get booking when and where I needed it. We got quite a bit of packing done Friday and's been more relaxed; Hubs' head is being its usual self, and it's my last day after a whole week off, so we're more chill. Lord though, the only thing keeping us from being completely overwhelmed, is the fact that most of our belongings have already made it into boxes. Les will work on packing this week, as will I, and I have 1 week left on my Y membership so I'm getting my hiney there after work this week too.
In just 2 weeks, we'll have all our belongings in a Budget rental, and we'll be in Aiken. We're spending Christmas with his family and driving north the day after. We're picking up some pretty excellent cast-off furniture from them while we're there...a couple of leather couches and a twin bed, provided we can fit's gonna be interesting.
The only nostalgia I'm feeling is for friends we're leaving...
Images from here.

Thursday, December 06, 2012

So now what?

Yesterday was "holy shit, is this really gonna happen?!" day. We managed to scrape up enough to pay the rent at our current place, and I purchased the money orders for the security deposit. Today was logistics day: I went out first thing and mailed the security deposit, grabbed Hubs' xmas pressie, and spent a big chunk of the day on the ehem, new laptop (!!!! MAN, it's nice!) figuring out the move itself...I booked 2 Men & a Truck, did some online homework that had me laughing at the differences in pricing between even a not-so-large (and individually owned/franchise) outfit such as 2 Men vs. local, smaller moving companies, booked locals instead, cancelled 2 Men, and booked a Budget truck.

Still getting used to the touch pad feature of a laptop "mouse" and I can't figure out click and drag, so an outside mouse will be procured eventually. The laptop was almost an impulse purchase...Hubs and I went out Sunday just to look, and happened upon an HP 17" @ Best Buy with 4GB RAM, 500 GB drive, Intel processor, and Windows 8 in the $350 range...basically everything I wanted and priced a bit lower because it happened to be the last one of that type in their store. I'm over the moon! I wasn't sure we could really afford it, but Hubs was making it happen after I didn't win anything at the company holiday party. Every holiday party, they do a big raffle and give away gift cards, the latest electronics, a couple of big TVs, and even some cruises. The odds of winning ain't great, considering how incredibly big the company is growing...but I celebrate 13 years with the company today and have never won anything at that party. So first world, but Hubs wasn't taking no for an answer. Yea, I'll keep him :)

Can tell I'm getting headachy though, from being on the dang thing so much today, so if you'll excuse me, something very wonderful and special came in the mail today, that I look forward to tucking into, perhaps with some hot tea and a cookie.....

Image from here.

Tuesday, December 04, 2012


The blasted brokerage money still hasn't dropped, but it should by tomorrow. The minute it does, we'll get a money order mailed off to Asheville and secure our spot in a 2 bedroom apartment in Weaverville, about 15 minutes outside of Asheville (and about 5 minutes from the Blue Ridge Parkway). If I still weren't so busy ironing out deets, I'd be shouting this from our rooftop...or porch, at least.

We're actually moving! It's finally happening!

Image from here.