Saturday, December 31, 2011

First Spell

So, today I am getting ready to cast my first spell.  I was reading about New Year's traditions and I found one called  "Hogmanay."  I realized that I wanted to observe this tradition and I started to write down what I needed, realizing I was missing an ingredient.   It just feels right to me that I found this and wanted to do it.  Raven is the one who pointed out that it was a spell.

And it is.

Hogmanay is a celebrating the New Year in Norse tradition. The original Norse Hoginanaye-Trollalay invokes the hillmen (or elves) and banishes the trolls to the sea for the year. One does this with the tradition of "first-footing." First-footing means the person who first sets foot in the house on the new year, and that person can not be inside the house when the New Year strikes. It is best if it is a tall, dark haired man- for luck.  The first-footer should bring gifts of the following:

coin: for financial prosperity
bread: for food
salt: for flavor
coal: for warmth
drink: for good cheer

So here in a bit before I go to work, I am going to put up my own small circle in the back yard where I feel most connected to the world and the spirits.  No clue how I am going to put up the circle really, just going to go on my gut.  And then I am going to charge the items for the spell with the energy that they are supposed to bring to the family/ friends.  I am also going to add basil to the small bag I am putting it all in because where there is basil, evil cannot be.

Since I have never put up a circle, or really attempted to call on the spirits for help like this, I am going to have Raven sort of with a magical ear out in case something bad comes or something goes wrong.  That way I am not completely alone and he can help if I need him to.

Wish me luck, and after I am finished, i am going to ask him to tell me what he thought of what happened when I invoked.

Also, this has shown me why people keep a book of spells.  So when you find one you want to use or remember- you have a place to keep them.  Also kind of like a note book to take notes in as you learn :)

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Clocks and time

When I was a little girl, my Papaw was always building something.  He had lots of wood working tools in his basement and he used to let me help him build things.  We made shelves and I watched him make baskets out of peach pits and all sorts of neat things.

My Papaw's favorite passtime was building clocks.  He had a shelf in the house that was full of clocks he'd built, cuckoo clocks in the den and several grandfather clocks throughout the house.  There was even a clock that he built in which even the gears were made from wood.  He was so proud of that clock.

I have so many happy memories from my Mamaw and Papaw's house.  My Papaw built the house too, when my Dad was a little boy.  And when I was little, I got to play with toys that my daddy played with when he was little.  I learned to take care of things, so that I would have them later.  Be careful, don't break it-you might want to play with it later!

Today, my dad made a special trip down here to bring me the grandfather clock that I had picked out.  He helped me carry it upstairs, level it, taught me how to set the time (there's a special process for clocks that chime), pulling the weights, speeding it up or slowing it down.  During all this, I noticed there was a paper in the bottom of the base, and I asked Daddy what it was.  He reached down and showed me that it was the specs for the clock.

Across the top of the page, in my Papaw's knotty handwriting, was the date he build the clock: April 1976.  It seems to be fate that this clock now sits in my house.  This is the first time in my whole life that it hasn't sat at the top of the stairs in the house my Papaw built.  I wonder if the house will be lonely for it's ticking and the chime.

I know it makes me smile when I think of it's song.  It reminds me of being small, and knowing that I am loved.  That there will be chicken and dumplins on Sunday night and Mamaw will make sure to have biscuits and apple butter.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

ho hum

So I feel like I need to write, but really don't have a whole lot of idea of what to write.... I guess I could just list the things that have been on my mind lately

  • a co-worker's husband.  He wrecked an ATV or something and has some pretty bad injuries, like a crushed pelvis.
  • gaining weight.  I've put on 6 pounds this term, but I really don't know anything to do about it.  I can't afford a gym or workout equipment and they pile so much homework on us that I spend a ton of my time sitting on my ass for it. 
  • school. About 5 weeks left in this term and I really just want it to be over, I feel like it's taking forever to get to where I need to be. 
  • school project.  there are other students that are supposed to be helping with this group project and I don't really feel like any of them are doing anything to help me.  I don't want them all to get a good grade because I did their work, but I am not willing to get a bad grade because they didn't want to work
  • bills.  We have a lot of them and I am always worried about getting them caught up
  • the heat in my car.  kind of ties in to the bills thing, especially since I am going to probably have to pay the shop to repair it for me since Cody can't fix it. 
  • my son.  His dad isn't returning phone calls, which is nothing new, but it's getting on my nerves.  I miss my child.  I still believe that living with his dad is what is best for him right, but I do miss him and love him very much.  
I'm also almost always tired.  I don't know why.  I haven't a clue, but it's really getting old.  I don't want to always be tired and feel like I could go to bed.  I want to have energy and be able to get everything done that I want. 

Just things that are on my mind right now....

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

It's been a while...

Since I took the time to sit down and just blog because it feels good.  I spend a lot of time studying and doing school work, and that's about all I really do anymore.  Raven is big on telling me that I don't need to study, but I have always been very proactive in my learning, and even though I am familiar with the material, I feel that the reason I am good at what I do is because I do spend a lot of time studying and pursuing those goals. I sometimes think I don't spend enough time studying, to be honest, but that is just part of who I am.

I am getting ready to spend more time doing the household chores than I have been, but that is because Raven got an awesome spot at the zoo for the winter and will probably be working 6 twelve hour shifts per week.  That's awesome because we really need the income.  I've been really stressed about making sure I have the money to pay the bills lately, and have been skimping on some things.  Not that I want to skimp on the bills, but I have had to simply figure out what I absolutely must pay, and what I can skip because that's all we have.

I haven't spent the time I should on myself and being uber stressed hasn't helped it any.  Hopefully a lot of that will change over the next few weeks.  If I have more time, well, I take that back, I am not going to have any more time until I am out of school, BUT if I have less stress, I'll get more done and I'll feel better.

A big part of my stress load went down recently with finding out that I got WIA sponsorship finally.  I got to pick up the books I had been missing for school last Wednesday and I was able to get some other supplies I needed Monday.  All of my fees and tuition is paid next trimester as well as the fee for my NCLEX and my licensing fee and like $500 for gas.  I won't get any gas cards until the first week of next month, but just knowing that they are coming is such a huge help and relief.


Ok so now that I have done a bit of rambling, I do feel a bit better.  See I knew I needed to sit down and write since I was kind of feeling it.

I don't think that we are going to have much of a fall this year.  It's a real shame since it's one of my favorite seasons.  I have a feeling that we are going to go pretty much straight from summer to winter without much of a demarcation.  I mean yesterday it was 81 degrees and today it's 47!  I know I live in East Tennessee, but come on!

I have to go outside in a bit and swaddle my pole beans in a sheet, and cover my pepper plants.  I have a feeling that we will get our first frost tonight and I don't want to lose anything, especially the ghost peppers I have been trying to get going!

Speaking of the ghost peppers, they are doing well.  A little over a foot tall now, and I can't even touch the leaves bare handed.  It seems that the plants have capsacin even in the leaves, so the peppers should be interesting when I actually get fruit from them :)  The jalapeno is also trying to come back.  When I got it in the ground, it looked like a dried stick I had just stuck in the dirt.  Now it has had some blooms on it and is trying to make more fruit.  I plan on having Raven dig it up too.  I just have to get some brackets from the store and a piece of wood to use for a shelf in the laundry room.  I am betting that I am going to be spending some money on a light for them too.  I mean I want them to live and they need more than just light from a regular bulb.

I think I might need to be browsing the web for some indoor growing supplies...

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

A few LOL cats

A couple of my friends are in to the kittehs and seeing the LOL cats always makes me think of them.  Yes Baker, you are one of those friends.  So, another friend on Facebook had a lot of these posted and I almost peed in my pants looking through them.
Especially this one.  I think Raven and I almost fell off the bed.  Considering the week we have been having, it felt really good to laugh!
I really need to get to work and get my blog updated with the events of this last week, but for now, the laughing is good!
hehehe  gamer kitteh
I do also have to pick up a few things from the store today and I need to do some research for a friend, too.

*giggle* evil plotting kitty!

This one is for meg, and I hope it makes you laugh out loud!

So I will save some for another time, but I have just one more and Raven and I are both hysterical every time we see it.

Monday, August 22, 2011

Disaster week woes

So, I was really concerned about my diet this last week when I went to weigh yesterday.  This has been a horrible week that I will write more about later, but I was pretty much forced to eat things that are *not* good for me almost all week.  I was also not able to drink the water I needed all week either.
I went with trepidation to the scales, emptied my pockets and took off my shoes, and waited for it to ding.  My heart sank.  I was back up a pound from last week.  Honestly, I almost cried.  I know it’s only one pound, but still.  I was so proud of myself last week having dropped two pounds and this week had to go so terribly wrong and I put half of it back on.  

Now, I should say that intellectually, I knew that it could be several things: gained muscle from all the manual labor I did this week with the disaster, water weight from my period, retaining water because I wasn’t getting enough.  Still, it was was heartbreaking to think that I had been working so hard and I had been sabotaged. 

I was however validated some today when I did, in fact, start my period.  Most women gain 3 to 5 pounds of water weight when they are on their period, so it looks like I have managed to stay on track after all.  I guess the real test will be to see how the numbers look next Saturday and the Saturday after that. 

Only time will tell…

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Having a Hard Time

I am not sure how much I have wrote about my sister before, and I know I have wrote some about my mom.  My sister is my half sister, we have different dads, and her dad has been dead for at least 10 years now.  She never really knew him. So our mom raised her.  Solely.  I have found that this is bad because it has warped my sister's sense of how the world works and given her a sense of entitlement.  She has a lot of the same feelings that mom had, in that she feels the world owes her something.  I know it sounds really shitty to talk about my sister this way, but I am  just being honest.  She was warped by just having mom raise her.  That is the simple truth of it.  That being said, she is very irresponsible, and she is selfish. 
Several years ago, she asked me about her father.  I didn't have nice things to say about him, but I knew that he had passed and I offered to try and find her father's family if she wanted me to.  She had only met any of them when she was an infant, and I was a teenager, so I had more to go on.  Mom had burned all the photos of him that there were, so Lindsey never even had a picture of him.  I felt bad, even though it wasn't my doing.  I set out to find her family for her. 
Her grandmother was a school teacher for Anderson County Schools.  Her grandfather did something for ORNL/Y-12.  I didn't know what her Uncle did.  I was sure that her great grandparents had passed on because they were old when I knew them.  Her grandparents lived in Norris, which is really small.  Armed with this information (and their names), I did some research and found that her grandfather had passed away.  If I remember correctly, he had passed away rather recently when I found them all for her.  Her uncle has a shop in Kingston and is married.  He looks just like her father.  I got in touch with her uncle, through his shop's website and that was the beginning of it. 
He tried to make up for lost time and gifted her with a fairly large sum of money.  She and her husband were living with my husband and I at the time.  They were driving one of our cars.  They didn't pay rent, didn't buy groceries or chip in on anything.  Hell, she got her GED because I showed her what to fill out and when to go take the test.  We had asked them to get jobs.  They hadn't even looked.  My husband and I were really frustrated with the whole situation.  Not to mention that they had either 4 or 6 cats that just *had* to come and live with them.  (yes I am rolling my eyes) It was very stressful and when we pushed, gently, to get them to pitch in and get jobs, they decided to go live with her Uncle and his family.  It didn't last very long.  I think they quickly found out the same things that we did- they basically wanted to mooch- and my sister and her husband went back to Kingsport. 
A few months ago, my sister came down to go to Norris to visit her grandmother.  I felt then, and still do, that the only reason Lindsey went to go visit her was because she was old and sick and "let's see how much I can make grandma like me and put me in her will" kind of thing.  I don't know that Lindsey truly loves anyone.  I think because of the way she was raised, in the conditions she was in that she doesn't really know what love is.  I really think she just wanted to see what she could get out of her. 
She recently vanished.  She broke up with her boyfriend (she's been divorced for a while now), she deleted her Facebook account, changed her phone number and doesn't respond to emails.  I got a message from her aunt a couple of weeks ago that her grandmother was sick.  I got a message from her yesterday that her grandmother has died.  So because I am the responsible one, I am left with trying to contact someone who probably really doesn't care that she died, and will only just go through the motions to see what she can get out of it.  I really also have no way to reach her.  I finally messaged her ex boyfriend and he gave me a few numbers that seem to be getting me in touch with her, at least that is the way it looks. 
I am faced with the dilema of knowing she doesn't care but feeling bad because I think she has a right to know that her grandmother has died.  *SIGH*  Sometimes I really hate being the responsible one out of our family. 

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Insomnia aides?

So I get bouts of insomnia.  I have for years.  It sucks.  I have tried almost everything to remedy it and had a little success, but not much.  The thing with me and insomnia is that though it sucks to not be able to sleep, it sucks worse if I don't get enough sleep because it triggers migraines.  So when I finally get to sleep, I need to actually sleep for at least 6 hours.  I did the whole never get to sleep for more than 4 hours at a time, and I did not do well with that at all.  Needless to say, it is important to me to be able to get to sleep at a reasonable hour.

Until recently, the best success I had had was with a Yogi tea with Kava in it.  It worked pretty good for a while, then I had a really bad day not too long ago. I tried everything I could think of.  I tried a hot bath, double strength cup of kava tea, a shot of whiskey, sex, and anti-anxiety meds.  Hell, I may have tried something else, but I can't remember it at this point.  I should also point out that I can't use Valerian.  It gives me nightmares.

I had asked Raven if there was anything that he could think of that I hadn't tried yet.  He really hadn't come up with too much.  Then the other day we browsed through Earth Fare and I thought that might be a good place to find something that could help.  Let me add in here that I have tried pharmaceutical sleep remedies and I hate them, I would much rather go natural.  So, at the Earth Fare, we found some plain herbal extracts.  According to my reading, kava works best when it is paired with St. John's Wort which regulates sleep cycles.  I made the plunge.  I got a 2 ounce bottle of extract, half kava and half St. John's Wort.

I got home and smelled my little brew, and oh mah gawd, it smelled awful.  I approached it like I would approach liquor.  Ie: I don't want to ruin a whole drink with the taste of it.  So I had Raven drop it into my mouth, towards the back.  I cannot tell you how gross it was.  Like medicinal whiskey or something.  So that was approximately one dropper full.   We went to bed.  I dozed off while watching a movie, but I had to get up and move around to go pee and find the tv remote or I could have just went back to sleep.  As it was, I had a hell of a time getting back to sleep, even with another dose of extract.  So that was my first night and experience with it.  I got about 4 hours of sleep because I had to get up and deal with the landlord and I made myself stay up.

Last night, I took 2 dropperfuls diluted with a little water.  It totally kicked my ass.  I was asleep quickly after going to bed, and once there, I slept for like 14 hours.  It was a nice sleep too.  So, now I have to find the happy medium because I can't sleep for 14 hours every time I go to bed, LOL. 

I wonder if the thing that made the difference was the water...  I have yet to decide what I am going to do tonight, but if this helps me get to sleep.  It's the best thing ever!  That's my worst problem, getting to sleep.  

Saturday, August 6, 2011

Peppers in my Garden

So I felt like my last post was getting really long, so I decided to make a new post to talk about the peppers.

For anyone who doesn't know, I got some Bhut Jalokia seeds for Raven's birthday this year, and it has been a project of mine to grow them for him.  When I started the seeds, I got a lot of seedlings and gave 2 pots of them away to friends.  I kept and planted 4 seedlings in the ground, and 3 of them have survived.  So three out of four isn't bad.  This is the little patch behind the apartment.

The bhut jalokias (ghost chile) don't look like much in their little patch, but I have some buckets set aside so that this winter we can dig them up and over winter them in the house.  In India, they plant these peppers as elephant deterant because they are so hot they hurt the elephants when they step on them! Really give that a thought- elephant deterrant and I know people who are going to eat them!  The middle one is doing the best and here is a close up of it.

Ghost Chile

I also picked up a green bell pepper at half price today and I have put it in one of my huge pots, because I don't have a "veggie" plot this year.  I will actually eat the bell pepper.  Raven won't, but that's why the spicy peppers are for him!  I'll take most of the jalapenos and ghost chiles and put them in the dehydrator so we can use them year round for seasoning.  I've done that for years, and I talk about doing it and what I use in my cooking blog, in case you are interested.


This is one of my humongous pots that I got Thursday.  I had found an old packet of lettuce seed and sown it loosely, but I needed a place to put my bell pepper, so I stuck him in there.  A few Marigolds as well, which will help keep the mosquitoes away.  No idea how old the lettuce seed is but if the lettuce actually comes up it will be a bonus!

The last plant I got today was a jalapeno.  It is going to go up closer to the house out of the way for Raven to mow.  I plan on putting in more up there next spring, but for now, the jalapeno can be a loner, LOL. You can't plant jalapenos with tomatoes or it will make the tomatoes spicy, and I don't want that!  I also couldn't plant it with my other peppers for fear that the jalapeno would get spicier!  

Garden Spot update!

Ok, so a few people know that I am super, super excited about my little garden spot that I am making.  It is thrilling me to no end to be able to get my hands in the dirt again.  This is the supplies that I picked up Thursday.  Yes, all in my little VW in one trip.  My car was driving a little funny with all that weight in the back of it (in addition to this stuff, there was a 40 lb bag of dog food and a bag of charcoal, LOL).  I got a 64 Qt bag of potting mix, a bag of mulch about that same size, 10 concrete edging stones, and 4 pots.  Two of the pots are big ones, like 15 qt I think, and the other 2 are like 5 qt or something similar.

I was glad I got the time to spend out with Raven, as we rarely get to do anything together anymore.  After we got to Lowe's and he was loading all this heavy stuff  he asked me what I would have done with out him.  I told the truth, I would act cute and get the Lowe's men to put it on my cart for me, then I would have them put it in the car.  Then when I got home, I would have unstacked the edgers in the yard and before he went to work, I would have asked Raven to get the two bags out of the car for me.  It wouldn't have been a lie either, LOL. 

The very beginning!

After we finally got home, I was so excited to get started on my garden and the sun was drifitng lower in the sky so it was a good time to get started.  Not as hot!  Raven unloaded my goodies and I got to work.  I had forgotten what a pain it was to get edging stones in level, having to dig out my area with a hand trowel, but I worked steady and had most of it done in about 2 hours.  I was happily filthy and had made a great bit of progress when I gathered my stuff up to go in for the night.  This is the first night's progress:

So after I got cancelled from work today, I had to go home, because the staffing was misread. There was an accident on the road home, so I stopped to browse at the Mayo garden center.  It had a bunch of plants for 50% off and a lot of them were ones that I wanted anyway.  So I made some more progress on it today.  This season isn't going to yield a lot since it is so late in the year, but next year will be a different story all together!  So in addition to what is in this entry is a green bell pepper and a jalapeno, I will talk about my peppers in another entry.

I got a few herbs for half price, on the left is a mint julep and on the right is a variegated pineapple mint.  The middle pot remains empty for a chocolate mint cutting a friend gave me.  I am just waiting for it to take root.

Chocolate mint cutting
 So the last thing that I have planted that I will share in this post are beans.  There are two varieties.  A purple bean that a friend gave me and some Blue Lakes.  They are both pole beans, since I freaking hate the bush varieties.  Here are their pots :

I am going to run some string from the lattice down to the pots so the beans have  something to grab ahold of and start climbing.  It won't take them long to get to the lattice and then I won't have any problems.  

So I have several things going on and I will leave off this post with a few pics od the garden thus far!  A closer shot of the little plot and a wider angle to show the entire area so it can be compared with the first shots I had up.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Building my altar

So my knowledge of my religion is growing, slowly.  In the house, we have a little make-shift altar that I am working on improving.  Right now it doesn't consist of very much, but it is getting there. It was just 3 little dinky candles on top of the television.  It just didn't seem right.

I don't have much to work with the altar on, and to me right now the one in the house is just a place to recognize God and Goddess on the solstices.  Nothing big.  Anyways, here is what we had so far...

Raven is picking up a plain red pillar candle in the morning on the way home to go in the middle.  I also have a jar of sea shells that Dalton and I picked up on the beach when we went to Panama City several years ago  that will do to represent water until I can get something that I like better.  I am just trying to figure out where to put them in the arrangement here. 

So for all my pagan friends, what do I need to round out the little family altar?  Most of my worship is done outside, not inside, where I can just feel grounded and connected to earth.  I don't even really know what all goes on an altar and what they are all used for.  I know that each of the 5 points is supposed to be represented: earth, air, fire, water and spirit...  but when I look through some of the pagan sites and search for altar things, I find also a knife and a bowl as well as altar cloths, incense and all kinds of other things.

What do you say about an altar and what it needs, or are the candles sufficient for the little family place in the house when you do most of your worship outside?   I need a little help and guidance here please :)


So, I have come to terms with the fact that we are going to probably be in this cheap apartment for a while.  With that said, I am giving a lot of thought to making myself happier here.  I'm looking in to making a nice container garden at my back door and what it will take to do that. 

I would like to start acquiring the materials to do this now, since most of it will be going on sale and make it more feasible for me to do.  Plus breaking the project apart in to separate little steps will make it easier financially too!  Breaking things up into smaller pieces is always a good thing!

So this is the space I am working with.  To the left you can see my two tomato plants that I am growing this year.  The space is about 34" wide by 50" deep. In addition to that, across the back, right next to the house is a ledge of concrete from the footer of the house that is about 6" wide, but is not entirely flat.  I want to take the new bed to the edge of the house, which will go right up against where my tomatoes currently are, but I can plant them farther out next year.  The bed will come just to the end of the concrete slab that is already there.

This is a picture of the entire area outside my back door.  The trellis and poles of the little deck on the right side I intend to make use of next year with some larger pots and pole beans.  I'm not sure about the area under the deck, just that I want it to be more usable.  I think that will be easier with the weed eater fixed because there is some kind of mutant weed in there that has really fat sturdy stalks.  And it's shady... I think I just want the whole area to be more attractive, and just feel like a special place for me.

This is the view of my back yard, which is to the left in the other pictures (in the bottom of the frame, you can see the tops of my tomato plants). It is really quite large and very nice and serene.  I think I would spend more time outside and enjoying myself and feeling more grounded if the space were nicer.  There are nice bones here to work with, I just gotta do it.

I need to take a trip down to the end of the back yard and figure out how to get down in to the creek back there. I know that there are probably some rocks back there that I can use to edge it with, and that would be free, but I am not sure it is the look I want.  I am thinking more along the lines of this edger I found at Lowe's for $1.46 each.  I figure I will need 9 of them, 10 just to be sure I have what I need.
I'll also need to get some landscaping fabric, but since I don't plan on actually planting in the ground, I think I can use some black plastic, which I already have, to keep pesky grass from growing up between my planters.  The next step is to find the planters I want to use and get them situated in there.  I really want to to a kind of tiered look, with larger pots up next to the house in the back and work out to smaller pots, with a smooth river rock poured around the base of the pots.  

There are some inherent problems with using big pots.  Number one, they are freaking heavy!  No matter how you slice it, once the containers are filled, they are so heavy and hard to move, and if I take the time to pick out things I like and enjoy being around, when we eventually move, I am going to want to take them with me.  The second thing is, they take a lot of material to fill.  I think probably the best bet for regular plants in them is to use a cinderblock or two to take up some of the space in there, maybe putting a plank on top of it to keep from having to fill the entire space with dirt or rocks and saving some on the weight factor.  

I want to use at least one big galvanized tub, like these, at the back of my little garden, and yes, I am aware that I probably won't get to take it with me when we end up moving.  I don't know where to find these metal containers though, I really kind of lucked up on finding this picture on the internet.  I wonder if they have them at the tractor supply store or something.  I also don't want to spend a whole bunch on them either.  So, if I have a big one of these at the back, and to the far left of it I plant a dwarf evergreen in another big pot, then I can size down my pots toward the front of the space and put a whole variety of things in them.  I want to grow a whole bunch of things here.  I am going to have a whole wish list of seeds and seedlings!  I can't wait.  The more I think about it, the more excited I get!  I don't think I realized exactly how much I missed having my own little space until just this moment!

Sunday, July 31, 2011

Hard time

So I am having a hard time adjusting to this dieting business.  I'm supposed to get between 1200-1600 calories daily to lose weight.  I feel like I am freaking starving to death all the time.  I hate this feeling.   I still don't feel like I am eating a bunch of bad things, except for my cookie binge the other night.  I just feel like I am waiting on the clock to hit midnight so I can eat something else.  Looking at my tracker seems like I am eating a decent diet, but I can't figure out why I am so hungry.  I wonder if it's because I am right after my period.  I don't want to make excuses, but I am SO hungry.  I don't want to be hungry, but I am tired of being fat too.  You would think that a lot of vegetables would mean a lot of fiber and it is supposed to fill you up.  I am not having that experience.

Yours truly,
Frustrated Fat Girl

Friday, July 29, 2011

Realized something

I am trying to punish myself for the damned cookies last night.  I felt guilty eating a half a cup of mashed potatoes.  Geez, I still have to have stuff for my body to run on now, no matter how many empty calories I ate last night. 

At least I realized what I am doing and I can try and get it on track now.  Well at least not have that horrible feeling anymore.  Who am I kidding, that feeling won't go away for a few days, but at least I know that I am doing it now and can work on rectifying the situation.  I know if I feel like I am punishing myself I am going to be more likely to binge more.  I will feel justified, you know, the whole "well I lived on raw veggies for 2 days, I deserve a box of cookies."  I think it would be easier if Raven liked the same kinds of treats I did and we could look out for each other, but it doesn't work that way and I would feel bad because they went bad before I ate them all. 

A step every day, is one step closer to the goal!

Stupid wagon

Well, as I said before I am trying to get back on the healthy wagon again.  There are things that complicate that journey.  Like the 3000+ calorie day I am having.  I hate hormones.  They make me crave things I don't even like and this time it was chocolate.  So when I stopped at the store to get fresh veggies to snack on, I had to get the chocolate no bake cookies I have been craving for 3 days.  So when I got home, instead of having a cookie or two, I ate the whole package.

Yes, I am a pig.  So what do I say about a 3000+ calorie day?  Shit happens.  I will do better.  But I do feel bad about it, probably more bad than I need to, because I usually do a fairly good job at eating well.  Hormones make us all do crazy shit, mine just have help because of the ongoing funk I am in. 

I did start working out the other night.  I couldn't do more than about 25 minutes, but at least I got off my ass.  I am still sore from it, but I plan on working out again tonight.  I just have to make myself do it.  Life changes are hard and take time to set in and see the results from them.  They are even harder to make when you have a predisposition to depression and addictions.  I figure if I keep plugging away at it, sooner or later I will win. 

And yes, I ate a whole pack of cookies, but at least I admit it and I have been eating veggies since I got up today.  I think I need more protein for the day though, so I will have some pork chop when I fix Master his dinner.

Monday, July 25, 2011

Falling off of the wagon

Well, while the title doesn't mean what people are probably thinking right now, it means something to me.  I am not a drinker, I really never have been, but I am a chubby chick.  I was doing well with my weight loss and health stuff, but I fell off the wagon. 

I think a lot of this has to do with me feeling like I am in stasis while I am in the school limbo.  However, I am jumping right back on the wagon.  I am tired of being unhealthy. 

First big thing- I quit smoking.  I still have a nicotine addiction, but I am no longer using tobacco products to meet this need.  So I have eliminated a big chunk of unhealthy things from my life.  I also got Raven to quit, so I don't even get it second hand anymore.  I am using an ecig and if anyone is interested in the one I have and how to order it, please just let me know.  I'd be happy to share my success with you.  I smoked a pack a day for 23 years, and my ex husband used to beat me severely for smoking.  I finally managed to stop.  I'm so proud of myself for it!

I bought some work out videos and I plan on using them.  I will have to do this at night, after Raven leaves for work because I have to use the bedroom because of the space, and he sleeps during the day.  No big deal, I always felt more like sleeping after I worked hard anyway.  I feel that this is a good thing for me, and something I can actually do.  I can't afford a gym membership, or the gas to drive to one every day.  The videos I got are Gilad, who used to have a show on tv called "Bodyshaping," and for quite a while after I left my husband, I would do the two half hour shows that were on 4 days a week before I went to bed.  Here is a link to his youtube page  he does speak with a thick accent, but I like the way he works. 

I am also getting to where I am trying to log my meals on Sparkpeople again.  I think I do ok with my diet, but Sparks just reinforces it.  I don't like the way I look in the mirror any more and these are the things I need to do to get back to where I need to be with it all. I think the exercise will also help me feel less trapped in the house.

The heat here lately has been oppressive and I don't do well in the heat.  It shoots my blood pressure up and makes it hard to breathe.  I know people think my house is a meat locker- that's why, I can't do the heat, it will make me have a stroke.  So I enjoy my home cold.  It is my house, LOL! 

So anyway, that is what is going on in my life right now.  I'll post more another day!

Saturday, July 16, 2011

New Adventure

Well, Raven is getting a snake.  I am not afraid of snakes, but I have never had one.  He is so excited!  On the up side, the person we are getting it from is giving it away for free because he got a new one and simply doesn't have room for all of them. Honestly, to me that says don't buy a new snake, but that is just my opinion, LOL!
This is a python, I am guessing a ball python, so I have been reading up on them while I have had a little bit of down time here at work.  He is supposed to be picking it up tonight, and the guy is giving him the entire set up and a rat for this week, and it eats one rat every other week.  Just so you know, I was pricing rats online, and the rats themself don't cost very much, but the shipping is outrageous!  I guess it would have to be considering they are frozen and need to stay froze, and come next day air, but dag on!  The shipping costs 3-4 times what the actual rats cost. 
Oh well, you guys have to wish me luck on this adventure.  If it eats my cat or my dog, I'll have snake for dinner.  Raven has been warned that he needs to make sure it can't get out. 

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Life Gets me down

I am so tired of being poor.  I feel like we try so hard to dig our way out of the hole and no matter how hard we try or how much we dig, we just keep getting deeper and deeper.  I don't want to move in with friends, I like having my own place and my own space, but I don't know if there is any way that I can keep turning them down. 
I don't know where it all goes.  It seems like every bill I owe is in the red or in collections.  I can't seem to catch up and every time I think I am making headway, it gets worse again.  How do I break the cycle?  I mean, I work what I can, but shifts are getting cut at the hospital and I have to take my turn just like everyone else.  To compound that, there are garnishments against my check and after insurance, the amount I get to bring home is pitiful.  I honestly think I would do better if I was on welfare.  It's sad that I have gotten to that place that it seems that way.
I've worked all my life and never had anything given to me, but I can't seem to get out of the ditch.  If it isn't one thing it's another.
Maybe moving in with a friend until I get some stuff paid off is the best course of action.  Pay off bills, help her out, not have to stress so much about money.  I don't know.  If I do that, then I will have to rent a climate controlled storage unit. I wonder what those cost.  I guess I had better check.

Sunday, July 10, 2011


Ok, so a lot of people know that I didn't have an ideal childhood, but then again, who did?  I am so frustrated right now that I can't hardly see straight, and this is an improvement over the anger I felt earlier.

My sister is 13 years younger than me and was raised pretty much solely by my mother.  Almost all of those close to me know that my mother was not a nice lady.  She was greedy and convinced that the world owed her something.  I think she was probably the closest I will ever get to the true definition of "narcissism."  I think that growing up with mom being Lindsey's sole source of morality and ethics has damaged my sister.  I think it has damaged her irrevocably. 

This whole thing leads me to my own guilt for it being the way it is, because when I left at 18, I knew mom was batshit.  Still I left my sister there.  I didn't take her with me because I was a teenager, I didn't think I was in any way ready to continue raising my sister, and I didn't know what else to do.  So I left her.  I left her to grow up molded by my mother's terribly skewed sense of what is right and wrong.  I did try a couple of times to get her out of there, but nothing ever came of it until it was too late.  I called all the right people and told them about the abuse that was going on there and as far as I know, nothing ever happened.  I wish it were different. 

I have tried to help my sister ever since mom got out of prison and it has never worked out.  First, when she was still so young and a teenager, you know I had no idea what I was talking about and she knew so much more than I did, so she chose to not visit me and allow me to help her.  Then after mom died and she was married and having problems, she and her husband moved in to my house.  My husband and I supported them and tried to help them get a better life, but because we wanted them to act like adults and be responsible, they moved out of our house and in to her long lost uncle Brant's place.  I had found him for her when she asked me about her dad's family.  Well, it didn't work out so well there either, so she and her husband moved out of there and back to Kingsport.  You know, all of us were wrong to her in some way so we are all wrong and she is the only one who is right. 

She moved on and I let her, I didn't let her in to my life, and she never bothered to keep in contact with me.  She only calls, emails, or texts when she wants something.  Today I find out that her current fiancee is no longer her fiancee and he has a tape that she wrangled out of her dying grandmother of her and her father when she was an infant.  She wants it back, I don't blame her, but she is letting everyone believe that she is always right and forever the victim and everyone else is wrong.  She is letting my sister in law feel bad for her, and planning on trying to get my brother to feel bad for her. 

This irritates me to no end, because she needs to stop leaching off of who ever she thinks can give her the most and earn her own living.  I am pretty sure that she is going to ask my brother if she can move in with him and his wife.  Most of the time, I wouldn't care- do what you want, but my brother has had such a hard time already  in this life due to his own bad choices which led to addictions, and he is finally getting it all straight.  Here she comes ready to stick her foot in his pretty pie and fuck it all up.  Because poor her doesn't have a life anymore because everyone shits on her and she is so damned pitiful.

Fucking grow a pair and move on. Make your own life and stop playing the damn victim.  Life will only ever be what you want it to be when YOU start working to make it what you want.  No one ever handed me anything, I have had to work my ass off for what I have.  Still most of what I have is hard won self respect. 

I am just so angry that she thinks just like mom did.  Everyone owes her, and she shouldn't have to work for anything.  Makes me really glad that my son never knew her better.  I know there are people out there who will think me twisted for that, but it's the truth. 

Sunday, July 3, 2011

Odd observances on today's adventure

So as part of our vacation, Master and I decided that we wanted to go hiking.  We looked at the parks that are close to us and asked friends where they liked to go and I wanted to take Fang with us.  We came to the decision to go toFrozen Head State Park.  It took us about an hour to drive from our house to the trail head where we parked and started hiking.  We drove through a part of Tennessee that I have never drove through before. 

I am convinced that I live in one of the most beautiful parts of our country. 

I do have some observations to share though.  After we went through Oak Ridge, there were a lot of homes in beautiful land, but there was no fucking place for these people to work.  I wonder if I am just spoiled that I live, and have almost always lived with in about 30 minutes of my job.  After we got to the turn off for the park, we found where they all work at, well a large part of Morgan County must all work on this one road.  (Flat Fork Road, in case you are interested.)  Flat Fork Road is a narrow 2 lane road, that is immaculately paved and newly painted and we came across, in this order, Morgan County school district offices, a wedding chapel (not a church), and then Morgan County Correctional Complex, then a few private homes and then there is the entrance to Frozen Head State Park.

Now, from the sign, you would think that this is the county penal farm and that's it.  All it says is "Morgan County Correctional Facility" and then you continue to circle around it, because that is exactly what this two lane country road does.  It circles the Pen.  It's fucking huge.  It also has fences that are at least seven feet tall and are not just a fence but rows of razor wire stacked on top of each other to get to that seven foot height.  There was a double row of this, with a walkway inside it and then more rows of fencing with more razor wire on inside the prison.  Now, what is going through my head right now is "there must be some bad mother fuckers in Morgan county, because the penal farm in Knox county (which is much more densely populated, and, well, urban) is NOTHING compared to this."  I also wondered why in hell they would build such a prison on the ONE road in to the State park. I still don't know.

Just to finish this observance out, I am going to tell you what I learned in my research before we went hiking about the park, and what I learned after we got home and I tried to figure out what that massive prison was doing there. 

The land that is Frozen Head State Park and Natural Area was purchased by the State in 1894 for the Brushy Mountain State Prison.   The state wanted to use convict labor to mine coal, and use the forest  for constructing of mine shafts. In 1911, the Emory River Lumber Company purchased the Frozen Head area and cut most of the forest's commercial timber. Major logging operations in the forest commenced in 1925.

In 1933, the governor set aside a large part of Brushy Mountain State Prison's lands for the establishment of Morgan State Forest. The Civilian Conservation Corps arrived that same year to construct roads and facilities for forest maintenance. CCC operations continued in the forest until 1941, although rattlesnakes and prison escapes prevented the establishment of a camp within the forest until 1938.

A large part of Morgan State Forest burned in a forest fire in 1952, and the forestry division transferred the lands to the parks division 18 years later for the establishment of Frozen Head State Park. In 1988, most of park's acreage was classified as a state natural area, restricting development to a 330-acre area around the confluence of Flat Fork and Judge Branch.  *A large part of the above history is copied form wikipedia*

In 2009, Brushy Mountain State Pen closed to inmates forever.  It was to house 584 inmates and was a maximum security prison.  It was out of date and expensive (and would cost like $25 million to update) to run so they had built a new, modern prison to take it's place, the Morgan County Correctional Facility.  It is built to house more than 2,400 inmates and is also a maximum security prison.  My question, why did they choose to build it on the ONE road that goes in to the state park?  I have no idea.  It just seems like an odd place to me for a prison.

More observances, people are loud and rude and have no respect for Mother Nature.  Parents are strange.  One would think that people would go to a natural area like this to enjoy the serenity of the mountains and the sounds of nature, the views, etc.  We heard (when we were close enough to the other hikers) a lot of screaming and yelling like frat boys - from adults, not children.  It was quite peaceful to be on the trail away from others and enjoy the sounds of the stream bubbling happily down the mountain. 

I was irritated beyond words to find cigarette butts in the middle of the trail and a place where someone had thrown down a styrofoam cup where it could not be easily retrieved.  If there was any way that I could have gotten it, I would have carried it out.  These things felt to me like the most disrespectful thing that could be done. 

Because of this day, and this hike, I look forward to more days and more hikes with Raven.  I want to be able to enjoy the serenity of just being.  Just being there in the middle of all of that awesomeness. A few pictures to share of our day.
This is Emory Gap Falls.  A 35 foot fall that slips over this cliff face.  At the top, we explored a little bit.  I wish I had taken my camera up with me, but I left it in the pack at the end of the trail.  I was amazing and inspirational.  I wish we had gotten to enjoy it by ourselves, but I guess that will have to be another day.

This is looking up at the falls from the end of the trail.  If you look closely towards the center of the picture, you can see the falls.  This spot is where we left the packs.  I had expected more with the "falls"  I guess, more water, but what was there wasn't a huge rushing of water, but it was more in another way.  The evidence there to see the awesome power of water and what it can do carving out the overhang that made up the falls. 

It was a beautiful day, and I can't wait until we get to go backpacking again and I have more beautiful shots to show you.  If you have some favorite areas to hike in East Tennessee, please let me know what they are.  I hope we get to explore many of them, and I have several books from the library that we are using to decide what hikes we are going to be taking. 

I think our next trip will be over to the Great Smoky Mountains National Park.  There are a lot of good trails over there and I love the area.  I can be hopeful that it is more off the beaten track and there fore there will be fewer people to interrupt my serenity.