Hanging the Sign

The time has come to actually move all of this content to some other space.

Back several years ago Chris said, “I’ve got room, you should totally turn your blog from Zelda Pinwheel to Mistiridiculous.”

He said a lot of other stuff that sounded to me like this: Merherhjiosierrioguiourg giggabite klweroidrelj;ej thermocouplelk;shjnekrushe domain and host space dlskerjelj I’ll do it.

Ok.

And voila my blog moved from blogger to wordpress and I went from Zelda to Mistiridiculous.

And then it all went to shit because he got sick and died. And I have no idea about any of it, and have never paid for any of it and that has always bothered me, partly because I don’t want to be a burden and partly because I don’t like not being in control of my own space.

And now I have to figure out the who what where this space is going. And I’m thinking about what I want it to be. And what I want it not to be. And while the deadline isn’t right ON TOP OF ME…it looms.

And quite frankly, it’s just not something I’m ready to figure out right now just as recruitment season is here and while there’s never a good time to figure out things you don’t have any desire to figure out, I’ve decided to just quit for awhile.

So I’m going to get the content. Mark is going to do some research. And we’ll make some choices. I haven’t been writing much as of late.

I’ve got some things to tell you about like the house concert that we’re having next Saturday where Mark, Brad, Lisa and I are going to perform for a handful of friends.

I want to tell you about the essential oil bandwagon I jumped on and how much I love it and how I’m not taking ambien every single night anymore. I want to tell you about Winnie. and my garden and the vacations we’ve had and will have.

And I might.

But this space has become more of a chore for me now. More of a thing that I have to get figured out.

And that puts stress on me, so I’m just going to remove the stress. I’ll show back up somewhere and you’ll all know about it.

But till then…I’m hanging the sign. closedblog

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Peaceful Morning

I hate that I wake up so early on the weekends now. Between the sun and my internal clock and Winnie, there’s no sleeping in. The beauty of it, is that once I get up, get all of the livestock fed, get the coffee made, I can sit outside and enjoy the garden, and the birds and listen to our sprinkler system finish cycling. It really is lovely. We’ve reached that point in the summer where these temps are the only ones worth being outside in.

Yesterday is finished and thank GOD we survived. We were over-staffed in the US Open booth, and while most of everyone was ok with not working their tails off, there were the few expected sour attitudes. Seriously. It must be exhausting to be so so so very sour inside and out. Even the booth manager from the concession management team noticed it and said something to me. I apologized for her attitude, and made sure that he understood that her attitude wasn’t representative of Girl Scouts,  and that we all were happy to help in this booth and work together. Yesterday was hot, but not as bad as last Tuesday and not as bad as today and tomorrow will be. I’m pretty thankful that my tours of duty are behind me.

I couldn’t be more blessed with better people who stepped up and gave time and talent to work the tent yesterday. Friends from all parts of my life said YES! YES I will help! And they did.

This morning, I’m saying yes to another cup of coffee, and then to planning my morning. I’ve got to procure a birthday present for Marks niece, and get some shopping chores done before we go to her birthday party up in Edmond. Tonight we have band rehearsal. Still no name, and August 2nd is getting closer!

The countdown is on till FamilyPalooza 2014. Emails and FB group posts are flying. It’ll be here soon and we are all frothy with anticipation.

I say yes to the froth and yes to the coffee and watering my garden. I say yes to birthdays and music tonight.

YES YES YES!

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Wheeeee!

Our Videos Are Here! Our Videos Are Here!

Did you feel the energy on social media yesterday? I was in and out and not in front of a computer so I didn’t get to watch it unfold on everyone’s page like I wanted to. It’s so exciting! I was so happy to see the announcement and so honored that National LTYM used my photo to do it! YAY~

And terrifying.

It’s one thing to stand on a stage, being backed by support, and speak your truth to a room full of strangers. We’ve had rehearsals and we’ve had discussions and you feel, actually FEEL the energy and support as you tell your story. It’s a wildly transformative experience.

However, it’s a horse of another feather to have your story posted on YouTube and have a global audience. It’s completely different and nerve wracking and scary as shit to hear your own voice, to see your face and re-live the moment that you barely really remember from all those weeks ago.

What will the response be? Will someone be hurt by the words? Will people be mean on the comments? Will anyone watch or care at all?

It’s like peeling back the band-aid too early. We’re all a little gooey and tender yesterday…today.

I’m proud of our shows. All 32 of them. I haven’t begun to listen to them yet, but I can’t wait.

Tomorrow is another day working the concession booth at the US Sr. Open golf tourney up at Oak Tree.

Tuesday I worked. It was maybe about as fun as when Trish and Gabe and I went to Wakarusa and woke up into 100 degree weather. Except without the music, without the crazy camping neighbors that we fed, without the river and the hippy chicks shaving each other’s legs. Without the eclectic vibe of every stinky pot-selling hula-hooping glow in the dark ball swinging feral child on the planet surrounding us. Without any of the fun stuff.

Tomorrow however, I’ve get to work with friends who have signed up for this gig with me and that’ll be fun. I’ve got several GS Alumnae signed up too and I worry about them but it will all work out fine. We were super slow on Tuesday, and in fact, over staffed with what we had. The actual tourney begins today, so hopefully that will pick up the pace a bit. I dread it though, I’ll tell ya that. Tuesday it was over 100 degrees in that tent and I kept drinking power aid and water etc but by the time I got back to my car about 4:30 pm, I had the worst headache and nausea ever. I drove straight home, walked into the house and directly into a cold shower. Mark took me out to get some dinner then I came home, put on my cool night gown and laid down on the bed under the ceiling fan with the a/c blowing on me. I was asleep by 7pm.

I just kept muttering “it’s for Girl Scouts. it’s for Girl Scouts.”

The thing that makes me super happy?

No work this weekend. AND this time next week?

I’ll be waking up at the lake, surrounded by family.

WHEEEEEEE!!!!

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8 More Days

The countdown to FamilyPalooza 2014 is at 7 Days 23 hours and counting.

I went over to our Cousinpalooza blog and refreshed on our adventure from last year. This  morning I drank coffee out of my mug from Bucky’s. I’ve been making mental checklists for the past two weeks:

movie projector and film: check

giant floating island: check

ice cream maker: check

coffee pot and bean grinder: check

arrangements for Winnie: check

I have 7 more days of working. Two of which require working out doors in the nasty ass heat that is finally upon us this summer.

Girl Scouts had the opportunity to staff a concession booth at the US Sr. Open golf tourney happening at Oak Tree National this week. I’m working tomorrow and have lined up volunteers to staff the booth on Friday. Tomorrow is allegedly our first day hitting 100 degrees.

Oy with the golf already.

But it’s a chance to make some money, and I chose the Tornado Shelter Campaign to receive the funds from Friday’s work and it’s all for a good cause and I’ll get to hang out with friends from my real life which is a treasure in itself so it will all be just fine.

I’m just really ready to hang out with my family. Really really ready.

Tonight we’re having band rehearsal. We’ve set the date for a gathering at our house to be our first “gig” and making it a sort of Welcome Home to Trish and Bruce as well as a Hey Friends Come Over and get boozy and listen to us play/sing. We are narrowing down names and have a pretty solid set list. I have a few songs that I get to sing with either Brad or Mark. Lisa is learning some places to join in with her fiddle. It’s all in good fun, but I really am loving it. I miss performing.

The weekend kind of knocked me off my WW adventure. I haven’t weighed in in two weeks, work interfered one Friday, they were closed last week, and I’ll be at Oak Tree this week. Gotta go Thursday and just own whatever that number is.

My garden is blossoming. The tomatoes are *this close to bursting forth into ripeness. The peppers are coming along. The container corn is…I don’t know if it’s actually going to make real corn. Right now it’s likely some Tom Hanks corn. Fun size. I’ve got plans for some Fall plantings and each morning I go out, water, nurture, drink my coffee, look at the birds eating their food and just soak it all in.

So the summer seems to be moving along at a fast pace. Before we know it the reunion will be behind us, August and recruitment events will be upon us, then we’ll be in Santa Fe and Colorado and then holy hells bells the all beloved Football Season and all things pumpkin flavor.

It’s easy to wish it all away, isn’t it?

 

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Literally, Blessed.

The weekend was a mix of all the things one wants out of their break.  We rested, we listened to music all day without turning on the television. We saw Mark’s family for a brief moment, we had a Summer Breeze concert. All nice things.

My favorite pieces of the weekend were the pieces that contained gathering with friends.

Friday evening we went to the music store and got Mark the pieces he needed to do some refurbishing on the banjo. He spent the entire evening working on it and I read my Outlander book. It was the epitome of a quiet life and I loved it.

Saturday morning was our first doggie playdate! Brad and Lisa have graciously offered to keep Winnie while we are gone to Familypalooza in a few weeks. We knew that Winnie had a really strong personality and just hasn’t been socialized that much with other dogs. They have a crew of three, and after asking our professional dog trainer Elizabeth for advice on how to approach this, we introduced them quite successfully. I think we were all a little nervous. I know Lisa and I were. But it went beautifully. There were a few snarls and snips and that’s to be expected. I have no qualms (other than just the fact that I’m leaving my dog) about leaving my dog in their care. She will have so much fun, when they finally break the barrier and become running buddies. I am beyond thankful for their offer of care for our girl.

We talked of our future camping vacation to New Mexico and Colorado coming up the end of August, and made some 4th of July plans. All things that make me so happy!

We really did nothing during the day. We had music playing in the house, I worked in the flowerbeds a little then decided it was too hot and I needed to lay under the cool fan and read my book some more. We tinkered and lazed around until it was time to get ready to go to the house blessing.

Our friend and neighbor Anne had a house blessing party on Saturday night. There were about 10 of her friends, including her Reverend and a friend just out of seminary who had put together the most beautiful ceremony for the house. There was a bowl of water, prayed over and blessed, and a piece of greenery from her garden used to sprinkle. In each space there was a moment taken to honor the space, what happens there, and a prayer of blessing and sprinkling of water. We began outside with the front porch/front yard. It was a prayer of blessing for every coming and going from that space, and for grace over each companion and friend gathering there.

We went through the entire house, even blessing the back door where Ruppe and Emmit, Anne’s two dogs, come and go. It was truly lovely. I want to do that here when I finally get settled in, in a few years. I’ll maybe add a bit of sage and incense to mine but mostly I want it just like Anne’s. I can’t express how beautiful and grace-filled that whole evening was. I hope she feels it, too.

Since Mark had his banjo and his guitar there was music and a few libations that followed. It was all very, very lovely.

The cheery on top of this already delicious weekend was the text from PseudoSis Maegen that said, “we’re going to Neil and Kathys on Sunday if you’ll be around!”

“Sure! I’m in!”

“Great!”

“wait…what’s going on a Neil and Kathy’s?”

“SWIMMING!”

OHMYGOD A POOL ON A SUNDAY IN NORMAN????? WITH MY PSEUDOFAMILY?

It couldn’t have been better. I got to see Maggie and Shiny, Maegen and Michelle and Sandra and Shiny’s family! It was fun and laughter filled and relaxing and delightful. I can’t wait to do it again!

THEN… (I KNOW! It keeps getting better!) Bill text me and said he was going to be able to make Summer Breeze after all! WOOT! We gathered in the park, and I introduced him around a bit and we listened to some really fantastic music. The breeze was blowing, the stars were out. It was so relaxing and lovely.

Perfectly perfect Summer time weekend. I feel blessed. Literally blessed. :-)

 

Cheers to a short week for most of us. (Sorry sister that you have to work Friday. I wish you were coming to my house. boo.)

 

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Quiet Life

We really have been living the quiet life around here lately.

I could not love it more.

Work is in a really nice place before it gets crazy during recruitment season, neither of us are running ragged on projects. I mean, we have projects, but we aren’t away from home doing them.

After work, Mark has been working on refurbishing the old movie projector from MeMe and PaPa’s house for our family reunion. He’s also been working on Julie’s record player. I’ve been working on reading my latest Outlander novel, cooking healthy dinner’s at home, tending the garden. We take our nightly walks with Winnie and comment on the fireflies, the gorgeous landscaping, what we love about our neighborhood.

I woke up last night with anxiety dreams about the fact that our garage is chock full of stuff for our garage sale, the middle room is still as full of boxes is it ever was. July marks one year of my living in this house and that underlying “it’s not finished” is creeping in.

Yet I just want to go camping. We spent some time last evening researching places to go camping over our three day weekend, eventually deciding that we would stay here and maybe take some daytrips. Our last three day weekend was spent here with family, and while that was great we don’t get that many free weekends due to the Summer Breeze concerts so I just want to take advantage of them.  I am ready to just go away for a weekend in the trailer. Pack the dog, pack the camp chairs and let’s go.

This is where I tend to make zero sense. I want to do the work here to be truly settled in and unpacked and uncluttered. Yet I just want to be camping. want. want. want. want.

So ridiculous.

Today however, is cool and overcast and lovely. We have AllStaff meetings at Council so I’ll be around my co-workers and friends and that always pumps me up. We’ll watch the last half of the USA game at lunch and enjoy. Tonight Brad will come over and we’ll have our band rehearsal. I haven’t worked on my songs in about two weeks so the drive today will provide time for that. I still don’t know when we’re playing. First it was July, then it was August and now it’s up in the air. Tomorrow is my weigh in day and that’s always a nice feeling. 9.6 lbs down at this point and steadily moving along with that. Winnie has a playdate with Gracie & Co at the Raley’s on Saturday to see how she does with their dogs. If it works well, she will stay with them while we are at the lake next month.

Lot’s of things…yet still nice and quiet.

Just like I like it.

Happy Thursday

 

 

 

 

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Release. Relief.

Finally.

I feel like I can breathe.

We had our Summer GSU volunteer training program all day yesterday and while, yes it was an 8 hour workday on a Saturday, the information is FINALLY public.

We are participating in a really amazing Customer Service Pilot program via GSUSA. It’s a really intense, intensive, major thing that required a restructure in our organization. My job as a Community Development Executive was eliminated. I applied for a position on the Recruitment team, and that is where I landed. I have a new supervisor and for awhile the unknowns were so deep and so vast that it felt as if I was just swimming without arms in this giant salty sea of questions. Would we be working with the same volunteers? Would we have a designated territory? Would I keep my office in Norman, my company car? Would I be Inside Recruitment or Outside Recruitment? (I’m outside btw) What would my volunteers say when the change is revealed? I’ve worked really hard to develop relationships and build trust this last year and I lost many many many hours of sleep over this one piece. What would the volunteers say? Would they be ok with the change? Would they be angry with us? With me?

Yesterday’s reveal was received mostly positive. Yes this is a change. Yes this means I don’t attend CST meetings on a monthly basis. Yes this means there is a different person who is the first point of support for volunteers in the CST. (We’ve actually changed that to SU service unit. lots of change) BUT. My skill set is geared for this. I am built for this. Working 100% on recruiting new girls and volunteers is the way I can help the existing volunteers. THIS is the way that I can help them. It’s always the same 5 people who do everything. The same group of women who attend the meetings. The same hands that volunteer for the duties that must be done in order to serve girls. This pilot will help with onboarding processes, it will help with customer service, and most importantly it will help to fully support a volunteer once they are signed up. We lose so many who begin by the process mumbo jumbo.

We as a Council have heard that. It’s a national problem. So we’re trying to fix it.

I’m excited about it. I really am. I’ve been so tense and so worried, not being able to be fully transparent when dealing with issues that are presently on the table. Especially here in my district. I feel relieved that everything is on the table and we can all move forward with the cards showing. Or we can decide that this isn’t the program we want, this is too much work, this isn’t what I thought…and we can say thanks for the memories and move along.

Coming back from NYC, diving right into this weekend and knowing what was coming, I am more than grateful for the Eddie Izzard tickets I bought that fateful, wine soaked night on my porch after John’s memorial service.

JC, Layne, Mark and I were on the porch, laughing and crying and laughing and crying. Cindy had already left to meet another set of friends for some facetime. Something came up about Eddie Izzard and without a word I popped up, came inside and proceeded to order four, printed them out and returned to the porch. That show was last night.

My lord but that man is funny. His delivery is such that you feel..really FEEL that this night, this moment, this stage is the very first time he as thought that thought and said it at that moment only to you!

Dude is so smart.

This morning, we walked up to the Diner, looked around at some resale shops, walked back home (almost 3 miles) and then successfully did nothing all day. Naps, reading, naps, snacks, watching bad tv…it was glorious. Mark has MeMe and PaPa’s movie projector out and has assessed the issues and ordered parts for that and Julie’s record player. We will have a movie night at FamilyPalooza 2014. The two reels we have are labeled in MeMe’s handwriting Reunion 1977 and Christmas 1977.

I anticipate

 

one of these moments in July:

 

Clark-Watching-Movies

 

We’re having that delicious one pot pasta meal from the Martha Steward website that has been pinned eleventy jillion times on Pinterest. So good. I used fresh basil from the garden. Tonight is more relaxing, listening to the records I bought in NYC and just relishing in the fact that tomorrow is a new day.

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Re-Entry, Re-Live, Remarkable

I’ve said it time and time again, but man oh man re-entry into the working world after a vacation is a biotch. Straight up, no way around it.

I knew that NYC was not going to be a restful trip. It never is. Maybe back when I was going every year, there were moments of downtime and some naps but that isn’t my reality anymore and likely never will be again. So when I go, I soak it all up, see all of the things, walk all of the steps, see as many of the shows, faces, places as is humanly possible in the time that I have. I know that going in, so I’m not surprised that it takes a full week to recuperate from it.

Traveling in groups is oftentimes tricky but once again, as usual with this particular group, things worked out. Sarah didn’t get to come with us but she did help procure our Hedwig tickets. It meant we didn’t get to do any meet or greet but Elizabeth’s friend is the stage manager and she did get us the opportunity to go back stage, onto the stage, talk about the show etc. That was a fabulous thing. So amazing! Mindi didn’t get to come with us, but we kept in touch via the internet and more than once we made notations about things “Mindi would really like” If I’d have thought ahead, I would’ve done a group photo of everyone ala Flat Stanley.

Our hearts were heavy, and continue to be heavy as our sweet Linda lost her beloved, rascal of a Pop the day that we all landed in NYC. Continued conversations and hugs and thoughts went out to her as we were together last week.

I think that’s the thing that is most surprising about this group of people. We didn’t set out to be real friends. We all migrated in from another group that got too ridiculous for our taste. We had no idea, however many years ago, that we would become real, trusted, family to each other. Back then, it was just…”I’m leaving this stupid group but I still want to interact with you people so here’s a new group” kind of thing. It’s crazy to think about. And now we have adventures together when we can.

This grand adventure was a long time in the making. Michael and I said as much as we were in the theatre waiting for Hedwig to begin.

“Remember back over a year ago when someone, probably Sarah, said: Hey Neil is doing Hedwig in NYC, and someone else said, We should totally go!…and here we are.”

As the lights dimmed and the music blazed across the theatre, I got really choked up. I was so excited to be here, to see this. I was sad we weren’t all doing it together, but so grateful that we were doing it. I get emotional in NYC.

I’ve seen my share, your share, more than anyone’s share really, of Tony award winners and Tony award losers. It’s been a very fortunate part of my story that I’ve had so many opportunities to see the shows I’ve seen. I know that I’m an easy lay for the seduction of a live theatre performance, but I’ve been around this particular block enough to know when something is amazing, when something is magical, and when something truly transformative is happening on the stage.

Friday night, June 13th, under the full moon, there was a transformative, magical thing happening in the Balisco theatre. That cast was amazing. By the end of it, with the themes of feeling separate from the norm, craving acceptance for who you truly are, needing to shed all pretense and just BE, the tears just rolled down my face. There was this energy rolling off of the cast, NPH and Lena Hall were giving a performance that I will carry with me forever.

I traveled home at the crack of ass on Sunday morning. Really. My alarm went off at 3:50 am and the car service was there at 4:15 to drive me from Brooklyn to Newark. (ugh. Newark.) I was home in OKC by 11:30 am and Mark was there to pick me up. I don’t remember really ever having anyone pick me up at the airport before. I’ve always gone by myself. All morning during my trip home I kept thinking about the shows I saw, listening to the cast recording of Hedwig I kept thinking about how simple it would be to just have that kind of acceptance in life. There were moments last week, that I was just kind of tied up in knots. Remembering previous trips, friends that were there, no longer here, no longer the same. Reliving moments of laughter in Central Park, shows once seen, places once familiar. As I got closer to home, the realization that I in fact, DO have that kind of acceptance in life, in this life, just made things all the sweeter.

And isn’t that just the best thing of all?

I don’t know when we’ll get back to the city. Mark hasn’t been. We’ve talked about putting it on our list. We’re also talking about an Italy trip. So we talk big. I know we’ll go together at some point. It will be lovely when and if it happens.

 

Until then, this was a remarkable adventure.

I’m really really happy that we all worked to make it happen.

 

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NYC

Yesterday was a giant day of travel. I met Michael in Newark after some delays and we schlepped our luggage two ours into Brooklyn by train, subway and bus. I was really this close to losing my shit when we got to our destination. Kizz immediately have me snacks and beverage and we sat down and all was better. Eva joined us and we went to Frannys for what was really just the most delicious dinner ever. Ever. I will tell you more in detail but seriously. I could eat there daily. Look them up. Gorgeous fresh menu.

Today is getting everyone into the city coordinating efforts for a show tonight and soaking up the general love of it all. I’m taking photos. I’ll share more later.

So much to do!!!

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So Close

How are the weeks flying by without any energy or desire for me to write here? I don’t know but they are. I come over and think, I should post something and then think…meh. I have nothing really to say.

Life is good here. Work is eating less of me, and that’s about all I can say about that in this forum.

Winnie is chasing squirrels. I’m heading to Tulsa to finish/wrap up/begin planning all things LTYM:OKC:2014-15. I’m looking forward to sitting around a table with Julie and Heather and just getting to debrief from this year’s experience and do some brainstorming for next year.

Yesterday I replanted our garden. Everything was turning yellow and looking terribly unhappy. We decided it was the dirt that we used. There was zero nutrition in it apparently. First time lessons learned. It also was holding way too much moisture and that wasn’t good. I dug up everything, set it gently aside, removed half of the soaking wet soil and put that in a big tub, dropped in some fresh garden specific soil with nutrients, amended everything and then replanted. I removed the plants that were beyond help and blessed them and let them go. Hopefully that, combined with this glorious rain, will give them the boost of love they need to giddy up.

When I get home tonight, it’s laundry and pre-packing time. I’m heading to NYC on Wednesday to meet some of my favorites. Remember when I went to Taos and we vacationed with strangers? I told you about this group of friends I have on Facebook, right? There are 13 of us, each invited by another. So everyone knows (in real life) someone/several. But the entire group hasn’t ever been together. In Taos, we took care of some of that. This year we take care of more. Elizabeth will get to meet Michael and Trish and her girls. Mindi and Sarah had to decline this particular trip due to other pressing life details. Still, it’s exciting to get to put real life faces on friends that you’ve talked to, confessed and listened to, empathized and supported for the last three or so years! YAY~

Friday night we see NPH in Hedwig and the Angry Inch, which was really the motivation for this whole trip to begin with. I’m ready. But first…list making and laundry doing.

Home by 11am on Sunday with plenty of time to decompress before we gather in the park to hear our favorite band: honeyhoney!

So with only two days of work this week, with the promise of seeing faces that I love and the promise of new growth in my garden…cheers to you.

Happy Sunday ya’ll

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