looking forward, looking backward, just looking

I'm so glad to be putting this year behind me. Not that it was an especially bad one, but it wasn't exactly a great one either. I'm looking forward to 2014, especially when the Year of the Horse kicks off in February. According to what I've read it's to be a good one for me in particular. Here's hoping the Chinese soothsayers are right! The extra time at my parents was well spent. I got to think a lot about what was planned and decided to pare them down. Instead I will concentrate on getting used to my road legs. Some of the things like the wild desert veggie garden and wabbit hunting are still going to happen, but at a later time. The one thing that's still on is volunteering at an animal sanctuary for as long as I can. Since this is my intended future line of work I hope to determine, sooner than later, which position suits my talents best. I think and feel that helping animals is going to prove to be very rewarding when compared to my last profession. All these changes I've been making in my life have been a little bit scary. OK a lot scary. The payoff I'm shooting for is a happier and better me. I think it's worth the effort.

I sold my rifle and associated gear yesterday. Most of the money is being pocketed with a fraction of it earmarked for it's later replacement. The veggie garden gear has been squirreled away for the day I'm ready to plant. The GS puppy has been pushed out until right before I leave or when I arrive at my destination. My parents can barely handle my nephew when he's around and a puppy would only exacerbate matters. I'm still in a holding pattern on selling my property because the real estate market isn't quite where I need it to be. There are some choice pieces of property I've found in NM which would make an excellent home base. This is where I will build my shipping container cabin. I've been reading volumes of info and watching hours of tiny home videos before I kind of figured out what I wanted. I mean in that constant ever evolving kind of way that I do stuff.

I hope you and yours have a Happy and Safe New Years celebration tonight. 


merry xmas, in person

Last year I celebrated Xmas with the family via Skype from Austin. Getting to do it in person took some of the edge off my apathetic response towards this particular holiday. Despite everyone having to keep a tight pocketbook this year everyone received gifts they wanted/needed. The littlest one in this family made off with the biggest and funnest haul. His excitement and smiles made it all worth it. 

Yesterday is/was my father's birthday as well. The grandkids took him out for a birthday lunch of Korean BBQ to celebrate, and the adults (us) made him a delicious diabetic safe Xmas dinner. We ate our fill, waited an hour, and then went back for second dinner.

Growing up with a Peruvian mom, we celebrated Xmas a little differently. A huge Xmas dinner is prepared and later consumed on night of the 24th. We stay up til the clock strikes midnight where we wish each other a Merry Christmas and the gift unwrapping begins. The only gifts opened on Christmas morning are the ones Santa delivered while everyone was asleep. This is actually a lot more different than they way she did it growing up. Mom adapted it after immigrating here to fit in better with Xmas here. After all was said and done, we were thoroughly stuffed but happy.

Merry Christmas to you and your families!


running on empty

My cycling has kind of come to a stand still. I'm still doing it but I'm just not venturing out since I've seen everything I would want to where I'm at. The timing was perfect since I've not had as much time lately due to preparations for xmas. I finished all my xmas shopping three days ago and have been feeling rather reclusive so I've not left the house since. Instead I've been helping mom cleanup, rearrange, and get rid of a lot of stuff at home. In doing so I came across a bunch of family albums where I found some old pictures I thought I'd share.

Me and my first bike.

Me and my first xmas

About two weeks ago my phone stopped working. There was no warning of the impending failure, and it simply would not turn on. This kicked off what was to become a weeklong ordeal. I didn't want to commit to another two year contract but had no choice as it was the most inexpensive choice. After some research I found the perfect phone and placed my order. This was an online special for the Moto X with overnight shipping. It wasn't until after the order was placed that I learned (from the email conf) that shipping occurs after processing which takes 5-7 days. To make matters worse there was a choice for in-store pickup which didn't work nor was there an explanation why. I called "customer care" the following morning about it, and they changed it to in-store pickup. When I arrived the store reps said I could not pick it up and would have to wait for it to ship. Later that afternoon I received an email that it had shipped and would arrive the following day. It did not. It was shipping from the one of the midwest cities that was hit by the storm. I waited five more days before it arrived. The new phone is great and I couldn't be happier with it, but I really could've done without seeing what's pictured below five days later.


children and the living will

I've had a lot on my mind lately, almost too much to handle, but I've been working my way through it. Recently my sister was telling me about the hoops she and her hubs had to jump through. She asked if I had one, which I didn't, and suggested that I make one soon. Her urgency comes from a friend who had recently suffered a loss in the family. What she explained to me was a bit mind boggling. When I learned about all the details she had to consider in making out the will, I realized I had a lot more loose ends than I'd thought. The biggest one was Bridgette. If anything happened to me I want her to be with and live out her life with my family. This might seem kind of silly to some of you to worry about a dog like that, but she's what's important to me. She's alive. The rest of my stuff is just that, stuff. All those loose ends are taken care of now as well. Most of that stuff can and will be sold off to cover expenses. I purged a lot of the unnecessary stuff a few years ago which made this process I wouldn't say easier but a lot less tedious.

So when I was talking to sissy about her living will. What happens to the kids was a big part. She knows me better than I know myself, which I'm really thankful for. She'd already worked out who my nephew would be with, grandparent visitations, schools, and everything else you might think of. I suffered a mini panic attack when we were discussing it because if anything happened to my sissy and her hubs, I thought it would be me. It wasn't. She told me her main reason was because I'm on a different path and doesn't want to disrupt that. I need to finish this journey I'm currently on. That was huge and made me come to terms with the simple fact that I'm healing in a lot of ways I wasn't aware of. While we talked I finally voiced things that had been buried in me for a long time. I came to terms with a strong fear that I might treat a child the way I was and fatherhood may not be for me. I was spirited child with a father who was physically abusive and mentally abusive mother. I'm not playing the abuse card as there are aunts, uncles, and long standing family friends who have spent years telling them both to not do what they did. We've come to terms and worked things out, but are all still wrestling with demons past. They've expressed their regrets but it's also in their eyes when they see how well and differently my sister is raising her spirited son. Hearing sis say it's alright to be where I am and recognize it lifted the anxiety I was feeling. She pointed out that many people who have no business being parents irresponsibly bring children into the world. If only they recognized what I did it would've saved all involved a lot of damage. Will I ever be a dad? I don't know. I'm still working this out and maybe this was just the push to recognize it all so that I can finally figure it out. We'll see.