Tuesday, March 12, 2013

It's been so, so long.  But I haven't forgotten about my little blog.  I have often wanted to get back into writing and sharing my favorite things, communing with other bloggers, learning and talking with you all.  I haven't done it because, frankly, it wouldn't have been good for my blog.  Stuff happened, good and bad, and I'm moving on.  I have favorite things again!  And I want to tell you about them!  Yay!

So, my favorite thing today is the fact that I'm able to contribute to my blog again.  So much has changed in my life that lead to this happy change.  You know how if you just kinda jerry rig an airplane long enough to make it look like it's fixed, it's eventually going to go down in flames, the pilot and passengers completely clueless to why they're now dying in a terrifying and completely unnecessary ball of fiery destruction?  Yeah, that was my last relationship.  Apparently it was built on a system of lies and pretty deceit that I (as intelligent as I thought I was) bought hook, line, and sinker.  BUT, as stupid and unnecessary as the devastation was, I am a fucking phoenix, yo.  The NEXT DAY, I had a plan.  And it is as follows:

Go back to school
Get a good job that will allow me to
Buy a piece of land and put a house on it

I had no idea how I was going to accomplish it, but then my best friend told me how.  Simple: I move in with her (which meant I got to keep my dogs...non-negotiable, really, but I was nonetheless glad I had an answer as to HOW I was going to keep my dogs), help her out with taking care of her dad, and live rent free in exchange.  I've already started school, I have a job that's almost full time and will allow me to save quite a bit of money (thanks to the rent-free part), which will then go toward buying land and putting a home on it.

Did I mention I did all of this within two months?  My entire life changed.  Things look good, and will hopefully continue to look good.  I have a few topics in mind for future posts.  For instance, my little crochet business is pretty steady, and I imagine I'll be posting thoughts and ideas as that moves along.  I have a huge interest in the idea of homesteading, cob houses, or tiny houses, and sustainable living options.  I have a goal to learn to play this on my cello this year, and accompany my lovely singing sensation of a daughter as she sings along.  I have many rants about human services, and the severe lack our society has in taking care of those who most need it, and the awful things that go on in those agencies that DO meet those needs. 

And on that note, my sweet kitty has decided that I've done just about enough blogging for this evening, and it's time to love on HER now, so I shall bid you adieu until I have time to come back and tell you more about my favorite things.

Saturday, May 5, 2012


My grandma died 10 years ago.  I've mentioned this before.  I have probably also mentioned that I didn't grieve.  In my family, I was the caretaker...I took care of everyone else, and was proud of my ability to be stoic in the face of tragedy.  At the time, I didn't realize that I'd eventually grieve whether I wanted to or not, and that it would probably come upon me in inopportune moments or in inappropriate ways, coming out as anger at my loved ones, or bawling fits at work.  I just had a "grandma moment"...but this one happened to be a gentle one...the most gentle one I've had in a LONG time, in fact.  I started to post on facebook, but it just kept going and going, and I felt it deserved a blog post.

What an odd thought I just had: "I think I'll go visit my grandma soon." I used to be able to just take off and go see her whenever I wanted, and it wasn't entirely odd for me to just drop by on my way somewhere. I miss her in an odd sort of way...the way the sun felt on my face in her yard, the way my whole being just dropped all the weight of "life" and relaxed into "grandma's space", the way I could just not think about anything as long as I was there. My soul misses grandma time, my skin misses grandma's sun, wind, air, water...all those things (though they were the same everywhere) were different at grandma's house. Everything felt different there. The air sang with gentle, loving, warm contentedness. My heart was at home in grandma's presence.
A side note before I finish that line of thinking:  I may have mentioned also that I'm the black sheep of my family.  My sister is exactly like my mom, personality-wise, and she is the oldest (which somehow translates to most responsible)...my brother is the only boy and the baby.  So, they both have a solid, welcome place in the family.  I, however, am a lesbian, a Pagan, I'm not easily pushed into believing things that don't make sense, I despise discrimination...and all of these things make me not fit in.  My mom recently confirmed that I have no place in my family and disowned me permanently.  I have felt often in my life that I don't truly belong anywhere...I certainly don't belong with my family.  The people who created me don't want me.  And THEY are MY people...I came directly from them, I wouldn't be here if it weren't for them...if I were to belong anywhere, it would be with them.  I recounted in another blog how I discovered that I do have a place where I belong, but it is not a place on this Earth...the one place I know I truly belong is by my Love's side.  But she will never be MY people, my blood, my family.  My soul chose hers, and that is wonderful.  But family should love each other unconditionally simply because they are family, and mine does not.  
 Ok, back on track: I realized while processing through this feeling of missing my grandma that SHE was the one person on Earth that I truly belonged with, who I had a warm, loving, peaceful connection with that was born of more primal stuff than choice.  I share DNA with her, she connects me to my ancestors, my people, my heritage, back to the beginning of time, the way my parents and my other grandparents do...but she was the ONLY person I am a direct descendent of who truly loved me unconditionally.  With her death, I lost the one place on Earth that I truly belonged.
 That sense of peace, the simpler quality of the sun, the bare essence of the air, the Earthy presence of the water in my grandma's presence...that state of being between the worlds when I was with her, existed because the rules of the world did not share that space.  My grandma loved and accepted me unconditionally, simply because I was created from the stuff that came from her.  I am her daughter's daughter, and that is all there is, that is all that mattered to her.  She didn't care one whit if I held the same beliefs as her, if I discriminated against the people she discriminated against, if I loved the same gender she loved, if I followed society's rules, if I embarrassed her...when in my grandma's presence, the ONLY thing that mattered was the blood we shared, the primal, indivisible cord that connects generations of people who share DNA.  She did not care what I became, or what I was, or what defined me, or what I chose to do.  I was good enough simply by the fact of my existence.  That state of being was a cradle for my soul...and now has no place to thrive in this world, because my grandma took herself out of it.

Monday, March 26, 2012

Secure Men

Sitting at a friend's house today, I was reminded of one of my absolute favorite things...topping the list (and as you can see, I have a LOT of favorite things).  Men who are secure enough in their masculinity that they are able and willing to show their feminine side.  This friend has a significant other who I really adore, for so many reasons.  He has long fingernails.  He loves unconditionally, openly, and fiercely.  And he has no qualms whatsoever about sitting in a room full of women, belting out Adele.  I'm so glad men like him exist.  He is fearless in his display of who he is.  I hope many, many young men are influenced by him.  And I hope many, many young people (of both genders) will see him and know that men like him are not as rare as they seem.

Tuesday, March 13, 2012


...Or more specifically, crocheted boobs.  I've got boobs coming out of my ears, folks, and I love them all!  There are boob hats: Which are great for nursing moms, breast cancer awareness, women's issues awareness, or just because you (like me) just enjoy boobs so much.

Then there are boob hats with hemp nipples: Which are great for the more nature conscious nursing mom, breast cancer/women's issues awareness person, or perv.  ;-)

Or a key chain: For the perv on the go...or you know, awareness stuff.

Or pillows? Because even pervs gotta rest their necks!  And you need to be aware of things like boobs...and nursing, women's health, blah blah...

Anyway, I'm just really loving all these items.  First off, every item you see above is my own creation, and not from anyone else's pattern.  I have yet to perfect the pattern for the boobie pillow, but the others I have down pat.  A friend will be selling my hemp-nipple hats at Hemp Stalk this year, and all the above items are available on my etsy shop (click the picture and it will take you to the listing).  In the works: a boobie scarf!  Boobs are awesome.  *giggle*

Friday, March 9, 2012


Random, I know.  I'm sitting here eating my breakfast (at 1:30 pm), and it's the same breakfast I have almost every day.  I LOVE eggs.  My body craves protein in the morning...eggs, meat, cheese...but mostly eggs.  It's very rare for me to not want eggs for breakfast (or some other time of the day, if I missed my eggs for breakfast), and it usually involves being sick or needing some other nutrients badly enough that it overrides my desire for eggs.  If I could own a few chickens, I would be a happy camper.

That's all...just eggs...that's one of my favorite things.  :-)


(I'd apologize for the long absence, but I wouldn't mean it...I've been busy being in love...party on.)

So I recently discovered etsy.  I had heard of it, but never really explored it.  But my crocheting has picked up tremendously, and I've been getting really brave...and I'm impressed enough with what I've been producing that I figured it was about time to stop playing around and start selling my stuff.  This blog post isn't about pimping myself out (although, if you want to check me out, please do...I'm really proud of my stuff!).  It's about one of my (new) favorite things...etsy! 

I think my first real experience with etsy was just hearing so many people talk about it.  It sounded like SUCH a better deal than ebay (it is...way), and I was excited that it was specifically for crafters like me.  I learned later that it's not just for crafters, but that was the BIG pull for me.  I saw some of my friends selling their handcrafted items on etsy, and it sounded like fun...not just money.  THAT appealed to me hugely.

I think the final draw for me was a friend on facebook who also crochets, who was making insanely creative zombie dolls and selling them.  I LOVED her stuff.  And I realized that I have skills that might one day match hers, if I put in a little effort.  Here's her shop (although it's currently closed).

My partner and I both have etsy shops now, and I'm so excited about how well they're going!  What have been your experiences with etsy? 

Friday, December 3, 2010


Shaylee wearing my "laundry bag" as a hat.

The same laundry bag earlier on.
Purses I made for Shaylee and Halie:

In progress:

Friday, November 19, 2010


Yes, it's true. One of my favorite things is grief. This is a rather new development, in the grand scheme of things. I didn't even know HOW to grieve until recently (well, it was a couple years ago now, but out of 34 years, a couple isn't much).

I don't think I understood that I had a right to grieve when I was little. My grandpa died when I was 8 (or maybe almost 8)...and I had to hold it together because my dad needed to be taken care of, and my mom was pregnant and couldn't handle any stress. (Apparently I wasn't good at keeping my mom stress-free because not long after this, she beat my head into a brick wall for fighting over a comic book with my cousin...what a naughty little girl I was.)

When my grandma (dad's mom) died, I worried only about everyone else. I didn't start crying until I was told that my brother was able to hear my grandma begging to die because she was in so much pain. I don't know that I've ever grieved her death.

I began to learn about this grieving thing when my cat died...about 2 1/2 years ago. I had quit smoking, and had no way to stop the tears anymore (oh my, what a fantabulous coping skill that was...start crying, no problem! Just light up a smoke, and viola, the tears were gone...on with the show). So, when I found out my cat was going to die, the floodgates opened...and didn't stop for days. She died that night. My husband and I both cried so much that we had nonstop headaches for days. That was when I learned about staying hydrated because crying takes all that moisture right out of you!

Since then, I have slowly begun to tackle grief in little pieces. I joined a suicide support forum to discuss my grandma's suicide. I didn't do much with that group, but it was a step forward. I have revisited the topic of my grandma's death several times since then. It's a huge one. After she died, my grades in college dropped from a steady, solid 4.0 to somewhere around a C average. I dropped a class 2 weeks before the final because I didn't have the emotional resources to deal with my teacher, who was a horrid wench. I have spent probably 75% of my waking hours dissociated since my grandma's death (this was 9 years ago, y'all...that's a pretty huge chunk of time to be "out of it").

I recently stopped seeing my therapist in preparation for a move to my new town. Upon my last visit, I told her that I wanted to go back to school, but couldn't see how it was possible given my inability to focus since my grandma's suicide. She told me I needed to grieve...like for reals...not this "every once in awhile, when I can't hold it inside" shit anymore. Real, honest, messy, soul-emptying grief...I had to actually put in some effort.

Oh lordy...it has been a challenge. One I haven't met very well so far. But my love and I have been processing much lately. The recent deaths of a close friend and a beloved Aunt have my love spinning, unsure of how to tackle the coming holidays without them. And the anniversary of my grandma's death is hovering around this time. The actual date was the 17th, but I always thought of it as "the Saturday before Thanksgiving"...which makes "my" anniversary tomorrow.

It is wild to me to have someone who I can grieve with. This is entirely new to me. When I cry, she cries, too. Not always...it's not a requirement. And she's not trying to "steal my thunder" or make it about her. She's just getting in touch with her own grief. She can be there for me, support me 100% in my own horrible space, while also acknowledging her own pain. How amazing is that?

With or without my wife for support, it is AMAZING to me that I'm able to cry, to touch my grief and allow it to show its face. For most of my life, the only place/time I have been able to cry in front of others has been in spiritual situations. The only other time I shed tears has been on the bathroom floor, safely hidden away from prying eyes...even those of my partner(s), closest friends...and let's not even bother speaking of family.

I still hold the feelings in from time to time, when I can't handle it. I've held the tears at bay all day today, for instance (it's my anniversary, dammit! I should be enjoying today, not crying about tomorrow!). But the fact that I can shed tears in front of others when tears are called for, the fact that I can allow myself to even THINK about the people I've lost, and allow the sadness to wash over me, instead of holding it back...even SOMETIMES...that's huge.

I don't like the sadness...I don't like missing my grandma...I don't like missing out on other parts of life because I'm crying...I don't like recognizing that I will never get to hold my loved ones again or tell them I love them, or share those special moments...but the idea that I can embrace the REALITY of the situation...and let go of the fantasy that it's not real, or that I can ignore it til it goes away...the act of accepting grief as a necessary fact rather than something to be avoided at all costs...this, THIS is what makes grief one of my favorite things.

Because it's real. It's here. It's a part of me. If I'm going to accept myself as I am, I ought to be accepting my grief as a part of this whole being that is me.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Online Alarm Clock

I sit in front of this computer way too much. I know what you're thinking. "Why don't you post more often then?!?" I know, I know... But my point is that I need to spend LESS time in front of this box. So I was going to start setting my kitchen timer for 15 minutes at a time to remind me to get up and do stuff. We have THREE kitchen timers. Two of them are really nifty...they have magnets so they'll stick to the fridge, and little stands in the back so that you can stand them up and watch the time, and all kinds of nifty features. Do you think either one of these were ON the fridge? Nope. Neither was the regular kitchen timer on the shelf, where it belongs. I know, nice, right? Ugh!

But I'm determined to set some kind of alarm. I hate using the timer on the stove (I don't know why), the one on my phone is annoying and my hearing isn't good enough to use the one in my bedroom. So, I decided to look online to see if I could find some kind of alarm. Viola! Here it is, an online alarm clock! It even has different ringers. I personally prefer the guitar. :-D

Monday, October 26, 2009

Delicious Black Bean Stew

I threw this stew together the other night, and I'm in love. Remember Steup? Well, this is kind of the same concept, but a bit heartier, and with lots of different flavors. It's going to seem like there are a LOT of ingredients in this stew, but there are really only a few main ingredients...the rest was just a bunch of stuff I had hanging around (which was how I came up with this stew in the first place, just trying to use up the perishable food I knew would go bad if I didn't do something fast). The main ingredients are black beans, tomato, taco seasoning, and some type of grain. Once you have those ingredients, just throw in what you have available.

I made this stew twice (once for dinner, and once to freeze and eat later), and I had different ingredients each time, so I'll tell you about both versions. One thing's for sure...this is not a recipe for those who have to stick to a recipe! Be creative and have fun with it!

Black Bean Stew
Black beans - 1 pound for a medium crock pot, 2 pounds for a large crock pot - soaked overnight
"Grandma's Grain" or barley, or whatever you have on hand
Tomatoes - I used at least 10 tomatoes in each batch. You can probably use canned stewed tomatoes or whatever you have available.
Taco Seasoning - 1 packet for a medium crock pot, 2 packets for a large crock pot

Additional stuff:
Dried veggie soup mix
Bouillon cubes (about 5 - if you want a vegetarian soup, use veggie bouillon)
Garlic (in one batch, I used whole cloves of garlic, and in the other batch, granulated garlic)
Bell Peppers (I didn't have these for the first batch)

For my next batch, I plan to use pumpkin. I wish I had a big get-together planned sometime soon, because I have a great big pumpkin that I could use to serve my black bean soup in! Here's what I really want to do:

Disclaimer: This isn't my soup. I stole this picture from a friend who served this soup at a pumpkin carving party the other day.

And here's how I put it together (this is the second batch I made):

I gathered up all my veggies
Soaked the beans overnight, then rinsed and drained them

Gathered my spices

Dumped in about a half a jar of my Grandma's Grains
Cut up my veggies - bell peppers


aaaand onions.
And then I mixed it all together, and added water just to the point where you could tell I added water:
(Isn't it gorgeous?) And then cooked it all day, and here's the result: