Thursday, September 30, 2010

There are Big Girls ( fauna wise ) then there are BIGGGGG GIRLS

Once again yesterday evening I took the dogs for their evening stroll. And once again we saw some "wildlife" except this time the girl ( doe, cow or whatever you call a female elk ) was just a bit bigger. Had I stood next to her, which I almost did, her booty would have come up to my chest. A bigggggg girl. She did not hop nor did she run....she looked at the 4 poms, I am pretty sure she smirked, and she sauntered off. Mind you the poms were ready to go in full pursuit mode which again I thwarted but this was a large target. She was medium brown with a white booty (ok so maybe she was just another type of deer that doesnt I would , not ) but I am always suprised when I see what lives 20ft from the house.

I also found a shotgun shell when we were walking. We are within the township limits ( similar to city limits but wayyyyyy smaller ) and there is NO hunting here. Certainly not on my property. I am of a mind to post a sign that says "Bears, racoons, elk, deer, squirrels, chipmunks and birds on this property will not shoot back but I WILL....TRESSPASSERS WILL BE SHOT , SURVIVORS WILL BE SHOT AGAIN". This may not sit well with the village fathers ( or mothers, brothers and sisters....) but too bad.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Off again, on again....opps, off AGAIN *sigh*

I am talking about electricity.

In Hawaii, it is to be expected that at any given time, no rain, no wind that suddenly you have no power. After 40 years its nothing new. For the most part, the power lines are above ground...which makes for lovely vistas....mountains - power lines and poles. Ocean? Also power lines and poles. On the south side of the island of Oahu it is very exciting in high winds and big storms since the last time we had those conditions, 18 poles went down on the one and only access road into the area. Fun, fun, fun. Not.

Even in areas that are "progressive" like Mililani, where the lines are supposed to be underground it can be exciting. Why you ask? Welllll....when an underground line goes out HECO (Hawaiian Electric Co ) and HawTel (Hawaiian Telephone...the only local provider of telephone service ) both run the lines up the streetlights, tie them off and leave them for years. Never mind its against the township codes for above ground lines. Then fun things of the light poles, corroded by years of neglect and rust, fell on Tia and Dave's truck a few years back. Does that change things ...absolutely NOT.

So when we moved to the mainland I was thrilled thinking the power would be more stable. Hahahahahahaha. Wrong.

Yesterday, for the first time in literally weeks, I decided to cook. Got a small roast started in the crockpot...woohoo, home cookin'!! Lookin' good, smellin' good...and poof. No power. problem thinks me to myself..I will put it on the stove, since it is gas. Wrong. Apparently the stove ( actually propane and not gas ) has an electric starter. Oh joy. No cooking that way.

Called the power company...yup, its out and the operator, who tells me she has 30 calls on hold, asks " are you in Angel Fire" ....yes I say, and she says " yes there is an outage " and hangs up on me ( I had called on the cell phone since the land line guessed it....electricity). Wow. At least in Hawaii they will tell you what areas have outages and when estimated repairs will be made. eventually the power does come back on and by 9pm the meat was done even though the potatos and carrots were still crunchy. Edible...both the dogs and I were thrilled ( ok, I was thrilled , the dogs were ambivalent but hungry...they are cute but very discriminating when it comes to food ) and we ate.

So off to bed. For some reason the master bedroom is hot, even in 40 degree weather , with the window open and the fan going. The master bath, which is attached, is COLD. Frozen buns is what you get when you sit on the throne, no matter how warm the bedroom is. What woke me was the fan going off...and the night light being dark. "Sigh"....and "bigger sigh".

Eventually ...with both the dogs and me did come back on. Here again, no wind, no rain and here the lines are actually underground. Makes ya wonder, doesnt it?

Good thing I have lots of candles.

Monday, September 27, 2010

Changes in mind and body

While the changes in my moods have been pretty obvious ( can we say "roller coaster" emotionally ?) there are changes in the body too.

For many years I had my nails done professionally and they were lovely. I knew before we came up here that there would be no place to have this done and in this climate they break constantly so I took them off. The good side of that is the price....none. The bad is that I am an inveterate cuticle biter....I bite them until they bleed. I didnt do that while they looked good but its an old habit that resurfaced immediately. Up here, they also crack and bleed on their own. Not cute.

Then there is the lizard lip moisture means you lick your lips, which instead of adding moisture, dries them out. It doesnt matter how often you put lip slime on them either. Also not cute. Did I mention along with lizard lips you also get alligator skin? Ackkkk.....

Won't John be suprised???

Friday, September 24, 2010

Bounding deer and a shoe in my sock

I have been taking the dogs walking daily, unless its stormy. Two days passed with either thunderstorms or pouring rain so by yesterday the dogs were more than ready for their daily sojourn into the woods.

We hadnt been walking long when it felt like I had a rock in my time then to stop and get it out...just shake the foot and keep moving. It seems like I am always the last to see whatever wildlife is out there...the dogs are wayyyy ahead of me on that score.

Lady, who is never the lead dog in the pack started straining to get ahead of me (huh?) When I looked up not 20ft in front of us was a female mule deer...a big girl. By this time the rest of the crew had seen her too and she took off like a shot...not running mind you but bouncing, all four feet off the ground and gone. I stood there in shock for a minute : who would think a deer could hop?? The dogs investigated every hoof print and were more than ready to give chase but I still feel like they are out of their league when it comes to chasing game that weighs hundreds of pounds more than they do,so we turned for home. ( The "rock " in my shoe was getting a bit uncomfortable by then, so it was a good excuse to end the walk ).

Back to the house, off with the shoe and rock. Hmmmm. Ok off with the socks and what fell out was a shoe. There are teeny-tiny Barbie dolls that Bella and Ellie love...and they come with even teeny-tinier shoes. For the most part ( choking hazard doncha know ) the shoes always get tossed in the garbage. Not just because of the choking issue but because when you step on them barefoot it hurts like the devil. How this one made it into my sock and all the way across the country is beyond me. But I am not tossing this brings my girls to mind so I will keep it, just not in my socks.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Ding dong...its WHO calling ?


You have to be rather ancient to recall...that it used to be a woman , in a pillbox hat and suit with her little bag and the commercial literally was...."DINGDONG its AVON calling". And yes I did sign up to sell it today. ( Are you kidding me?) Nope. I did it. Why you might ask. Well, when it comes to makeup or skin care or body care, here in Angel Fire its a joke. There is one of those 5ft tall twirly thingys by the cash register in the only grocery store in town with 5 yr old mascara on it...or nothing.

Mostly I did it so I could have access to what I use...and thought it might be a good idea for other women in this valley who are without any access to goodies unless they drive almost an hour. I dont want to really "sell" but I do buy (thank you Lisa : ) and I will probably be my own best customer. It also seems like a good way to meet other women ( Tia says it might be His way of getting me out of the house and into the community....)

But seriously....ME selling soap?
Yep...looks like it.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010


Although the exterior rain continues, the interior has stopped. I needed to go back to my roots... and since I cannot " look unto the hills, from whence cometh my strength" as they are covered in gray falling water, I can and did look to His Word.

It isnt as though I play " let the Bible open where it may" but I had no certain scripture in mind when I opened the little New Testament I have.

Romans, Chapter 8, verses 5 - 10.

It is when I focus on the physical that I feel loss....when I am in His spirit, I can not only function but live. With Him, I can bear all things.

And the question is never am I blessed, it is instead, how can I be a blessing.
Praying I am quiet enough to hear His leading.

He says " be still and know that I AM "
It is a hard thing for a noisy human.

The bottom of the bowl

I almost feel that yesterday was a fluke. Last night was a bad one....bad dreams and very little sleep. And those clouds that covered the valley yesterday are overhead now....weeping big fat tears that echo my heart.

I started today on my knees today too. Asking Him to simply get through the day. With John gone I feel dismembered. It is more than just mental. Though I have checked and all my body parts are there I am physically imcomplete. What I think about now is the time we spent not getting along while he was here....and how sorry I am that I dont always submit or even agree with him. I dont know if he knows how important he is to me. He makes me whole and complete, even in the times that are hard. Which is not to say when he comes back I will be perfect....I know I wont but hopefully I will remember these times without him and my gratitude will outweigh any disagreement.

I am missing my grandkids too....they all seem to have changed in the short time that I have been away. Will they remember me? Will I still be important to them?

The rain is pouring and raindrops, like teardrops, are all around me and inside me. Is it possible to have a beating heart when it has an enormous hole in it?

Please pray for me.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

A bowl of clouds

When I woke up this morning, after the first good nights sleep in days, I looked out the window. At night what you can see is a few steady lights and ( of course ) the red blinking light...our one and only traffic signal. This morning the sky was totally empty of clouds....clear and bright and beautiful. Moreno valley was gone. Washed under in a foam of clouds that covered the whole valley. There were no houses, nor shops road , no lights. It looked to me as though God Himself had poured all the sky clouds into the valley. Shape shifting, moving ....a bowl of clouds.

For the first time in many days, I started this day on my knees, before a cross with Christ on it. Thanking Him for the day, for my life, for my family ( especially Gracie who called me on her own last night...quite the accomplishment for a 2 yr. old!!)...for all of it. Most of all for my husband. I miss him more than words can say. I am truly blessed and it is least for the moment - before I mess it up - with my soul.

Monday, September 20, 2010

Fall..something else new

There are really no seasons in Hawaii. Unless you count "hot and humid with no wind", "hot and humid with tradewinds" , or "raining".

This is the first time in many years that I will be able to see the change of seasons and it has already started. I dont know what I expected...I guess to just wake up one morning and find all the trees wearing their golden amber leaves but its not like that. One small branch went gold.....then another higher up and another lower down. There doesnt seem to be any rhyme or reason to it, at least not that I can figure out.

The game in the area is on the move too. Bikki just alerted me to a mule deer at the bottom of the stairs on the back deck. She is the "hunter" out of the four dogs and decided a deer chase would be fun. She is still whining about me not letting her out but honestly "pom vs deer" sounds like a losing game for the dog. To be fair Lady smells all the same things Bikki does but she has absolutely no interest in the hunt part. She comes right back in the house and watches through the glass door. Smart dog.

This has been a very wet year for Angel Fire and there is no shortage of fodder for the critters to eat ( and I supplement their diet with tomato cores, lettuce, bread and whatever else vegetarian that is ready to go in the trash). Since I get to do the garbage run now ( no mail delivery, no trash pick-up here) the less that goes in the can, the less frequently I need to do it.

What is amazing here is how quickly the temp drops when clouds roll in. You can watch storms coming in over the mountains and as soon as the sun goes under cover, its chilly. Thunderheads on the move.....and the dogs are definately not crazy about thunder. Personally, I love it.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Doing something I've never done

For the first time in my life I shopped in a grocery isle I've no experience with. FROZEN FOOD, already cooked. All I have to do is heat it. May not sound like much to you but to me it is HUGE. WOW. Even here in Angel Fire there is amazing varitety. Classic American, Italian, Mexican ...even Indian ( India Indian ) and Chinese. While some of those things are available at some of the local restaurants ( we do have an amazing Chinese restaurant....go figure!) these sit awaiting the pleasure of my choosing, right in my freezer. I am sure I will get tired of "nuking" instead of cooking at some point, but at this moment, I am thrilled. While I do love to cook, for the most part, what a blessing not to have to if I dont feel like it. Besides, when I do cook, its always for an will be a real trial to try and just cook for 1. Lovely to have another option ( and what took me so long to try some of this stuff????)

Doesnt take much to get me all fired up, does it?

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Gardening in the Rock(ies)...the root ball won

I figured that transplanting two itty-bitty pine trees would be a snap. Ha. The only thing that snapped was my temper. I thought wetting the ground to prep it would help the root ball release its hold. John did warn to to wet, wait, dig and repeat. Which I did three times. Did I mention that New Mexico grows rocks? Around which the roots had emeshed themselves, to the point that even these small trees are loath to let go, period. I think I did manage to expose both root balls, even though the trees never budged, so I probably killed both of them. At this point I have decided that if I want a baby pine trees, I will go buy them. I did google this ( unfortunately AFTER this little exercise in futility) and found out that for every 1 inch in diameter the tree is, there is 9 -12 inches in width for the root ball and 18-24 inches in depth. Oh well. Live and learn.

I am so disgusted that I am going to go iron. I figure if I do a few pieces a day I should be caught up sometime in 2020.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Wednesday morning, isnt just a song

John has gone back to Hawaii. The drive home from Albuquerque I was numb. I would say brain dead but I managed to make it back to the house. No workers were here, for which I was grateful, and the dogs were very glad to see me. I worried about whether the key would give me problems - it can be stubborn at times - but it turns out the front door was unlocked so the key wasnt an issue. I didnt know whether to be afraid or simply relieved.

I reached out a foot at 3am and my brain snapped awake with the knowledge that he has gone and was not there in the bed. That for the first time in our married life we have chosen to live separate least some of the time. While I do love this new house and the beauty that surrounds me, it is so much change at one time that I am not mentally "here". I dont know where I am.....

If this is the new normal, its a very quiet normal ( the dogs are great company and while they are not great conversationalists, they listen attentively : )

Fortunately, there is much to keep me busy.....a few boxes left to unpack, cleaning to be done, some digging, planting and potting ...and the ever present ironing. How I manage to be behind in ironing, always and everywhere, baffles me since we rarely wear clothes in this neck of the woods that require that sort of attention. It is one of the definate banes of my existence. I guess I should pray that the wrinkled look becomes fashionable....on clothes that is.

Saturday, September 11, 2010

We mourn them still

There is sobbing of the strong
And a pall upon the land
But the people, in their weeping
Bare the iron hand
Beware the people weeping
When they bare the iron hand

This was written, not after 9-11, but after Lincoln was shot.
It was true then.
It is true now.

Friday, September 10, 2010

Do you remember?

Tomorrow marks 9 years since we were attacked, 9 years since our lives here in America fundamentally changed forever. Like the murder of President Kennedy, most of us remember exactly where we were and what we were doing when we heard about the Twin Towers, the Pentagon and the field in Pennsylvania.

In Hawaii, we were still sleeping. The phone rang and it was Tessa....and I remember thinking that phone calls in the middle of the night ( it was actually morning but still dark out) usually mean someone has died or something else horrid has happened. And it had. She said "mom, turn on the tv" which we did. By then the first plane had hit the first tower and the second was hit shortly thereafter. We thought, as did much of the country, that perhaps the first plane was an accident. After the second, we all knew we were under attack.

Not that bin laden was a newbie to the scene of the "hate America" gang. He had been in on so many attacks prior to 9-11. The USS Cole, Kobar Towers, the first World Trade Center bombing....his fingerprints had long been on many attacks but on 9-11 we were attacked in our own country.

It opened the eyes of many of the touchy /feely liberals who had remained blind to the hatred of America by much of the Islamic world. Remember the celebrations, those dancing in the streets even as we searched for body parts? Remember those who said we had brought this on ourselves, that what we wrought in the world had "come home to roost"? The American hate mongers like Jeremiah Wright who said "God damn America"?

Now in the White House we have someone who swallowed this vile brew for over 20 years and sends his greetings to the muslim world while bowing low to them. A man whose wife , for the FIRST TIME in her life, is proud of America. Who are these people??

Remember that day, those lives lost or broken....and unlike our new Marie Antionette, be proud of America. Never forget. Never.

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Change of seasons....change of moods

I realize that fall doesn't officially start till later this month but my mood has changed already. The slow dying of included? I dont know if this is what its about but I know I feel different. Sad and though I am not alone yet, lonely. I know when the leaves start their slow decay I will mourn their vibrant presence. They used to be called "quaking aspens" and I now know why. Every passing breath of wind makes them quiver.....they are alive and beautiful and I remember how bare and dead they seem in winter. I still have the beauty of their dying....the orange, amber, yellow, reds. How is it that even as they die, they are at their most gorgeous?

Is that too , how God sees us? How , when we are giving up the " goat " or ghost, we see what He has always had to offer and are blessed , finally, and at the last call we see His glory and grace. Finally.

I am not happy but I am what I have been given, in family, in treasure, in time and yes, even I , by my talents. I dont see what they are most of the time...certainly not my talents. But like the gift everyday is, I must be sure to untie the ribbons and LOOK at the gift. And certainly, at His grace.

Thank you Lord....for all of it.