Monday, September 29, 2014

New Folders

 Just in case you haven't noticed, I put some new pages at the top of this page. Yours truly has all these things. I'm at the point now that I'm comfortable talking about them. In fact, it's a new passion...

 I hope to share resources on these pages that will benefit others and make this a discussion. It's time to have a discussion about these things. Robin Williams unfortunately started the discussion with his untimely death. It's time that it continue to bring awareness to these things.

 I hope you find the resources in these folders (once completed) interesting and use them to help others.

 Passions can do that. 

Saturday, September 27, 2014

Passionately Passionate About...

 I got to thinking about this the other night and found my mind scattered.

 I've had many passions through the years. Some were quite weird-collecting rocks in a box. (I remember how angry I got when my mother wanted to toss the shoe box I kept them in...) Watching Dallas as a grade school kid. (I find the new series boring...) Writing scripts of various Divorce Court scenarios. (Remember that TV series in the '80s?)

 And then, I took up crafty hobbies in my 20s. Stamping first of all. Then scrapbooking. That truly became a passion.

 I had this hobby many, many years. MANY years. I finally gave it up after being laid off in 2008. After all, it's not wise to hit the scrapbooking store when you're only getting unemployment! I liked the hobby because it obviously was a creative release. I think in some way though, I also wanted to make something positive in my life. I wanted my history to be positive even though I wasn't feeling it in my own life at the time.

 I also took up making cards. In fact, I still have enough Christmas cards to send out for a couple more years.

I would even sell them. (Hopefully not the one above. Lol) People actually enjoyed getting these too! 

 I also made gift tags galore. Christmas isn't the same when I'm around! ;) 

Now this one's cute! 
 I even dry embossed for awhile. I'd still be doing it if I could find my light box.... I should ask Santa for one at Christmas. :) 

 My latest hobby is making mini albums. Literally creating them from scratch. 

 May they sell.... 

 I don't spend as much time on my hobbies as I'd like (It's nice to have money to spend on them...), but when I do, it's quite enjoyable. I've obviously got a paper theme going on for my hobbies, which is cool. If only they could be affordable. :) 

 It's amazing how our passions change with the wind sometimes. From rocks to books. 

 May your hobbies never be thrown out. ;) 

Friday, September 26, 2014

Someone Must Have Prayed For Better Weather

  Fall is officially here in Southern California! It was, overall, a cooler week here in Orange County, California. I was incredibly happy about that, even though we had a mix in of a few terribly hot days. It's time for me to start thinking about using the treadmill now for exercising. 

 Read on to see the typicality of my week: 

Saturday, September 20, 2014-It's cloudy out today with cooler weather! Yaaay! It's as if Fall will actually normally start in three days. Whoa! You don't know how happy cooler weather makes me. It's as if I can function again without the dredges of hell creeping up on me with incredible zeal.

 I got an incredibly sad report this morning when I learned that someone I knew from grade school on has a terminal brain tumor. He was friends with my sister for awhile, and she is also sad about this. The whole situation is just sad, as he and his wife have a teenage daughter. Without treatment, dead in three months. With treatment, dead in three years but living a terrible quality life. I told his wife that I'd keep the family in prayer.

 As I mentioned in the previous paragraph, my sister called me today. I texted her last night to let her know I was thinking of her, so she returned the favor and gave me a call. I was happy to hear from her!

 I finished up some work from yesterday. I made an editorial calendar and updated my social media pages related to my freelancing work. I also was contacted by a student at the local university asking my opinion about the major issues of the city. I was flattered!

Sunday, September 21, 2014-How fast can I get ready for church? Pretty fast! I woke up late (After 10 a.m.) and rushed to get ready to go. I made it a little late to church, but consider it a victory that someone with social anxiety showed up-even if it was a little late. They were starting the baby dedications when I arrived. The pastor's wife gave the sermon today, which was great. I don't think I've ever heard her preach, so it was great to hear. They brought in food trucks for after service so we could all have lunch together. A little too expensive for my tastes, even though they sounded fantastic.

 I had dinner with my parents this evening. I walked their Pomeranian for them first of all. We walked down to the park by my folks house. She acted like we were patrolling the area while on the walk. :) There were other things that happened, which I won't mention out of respect for my parents.

Monday, September 22, 2014-I nearly had a heart attack at the pharmacy when I went to pick up my antidepressant refill and found out the price went up by $6.95! From three months ago?! Yes, the pharmacy tech said. I got a pill cutter for free though. I bet it cost $6.95...

 I interviewed a woman who does high end candy stations for weddings. She gave me this cute treat. How unique is this?? It's chocolate sea shells with a fine, crunchy shell... I'm just waiting for slide show photos from her in order to complete the profile. She hasn't sent them four hours later, so I hope I didn't scare her off. Lol.

 I went to see my dad's cousin and his wife today after the interview. He has Stage 4 cancer, so I wanted to do the right thing and go see him-even if my dad can't. We called another cousin who also has cancer, which was quite sad. We prayed for her over the phone. I realized the other day that I now know seven people with some form of cancer. 1,2,3,4,5,6,7...... Wow.

Tuesday, September 23, 2014-The woman I interviewed yesterday got back to me today and said she would send the photos. Yaaay! :) I've learned lessons from this interview that I'll carry over to others.

 The library in my city had a yarn bombing today. It was fun to see. I actually asked one woman if she was crocheting a blanket on to a tree. Lol. No, she wasn't, she said. They did stitch these things on to the trees though...

 It was very pretty to see. This library has really tried to become quite modern recently, which is enjoyable to see-and go to.

 I did some more research in the evening for other wedding vendors to profile.

Wednesday, September 24, 2014-It was hotter than hell again! Talk about bipolar weather!

 I went to my once a week job again. She has been a blessing-and caring-but I can see that this is almost done and it's time to move on.

 I got the slide show photos! Yay!!! :) I was prepared to speak to another candy station vendor if I didn't get the photos by tomorrow. But, I don't have to worry about that now. Yay. :) My schedule then isn't quite as messed up as I thought it would be. Yay again. :) I also put up my weekly column about museums to visit this week.

 I did my laundry at my parents house after work. I also did parent errands too. My dad had to go to the bank. We got take out. They're pressuring me about something that they're right about-sort of. I've said no to them before though when needed.

Thursday, September 25, 2014-Aaaaand, it's incredibly hot again. Isn't it supposed to be Fall? I was shocked when I got in the pool in the evening and it was absolutely freezing. I guess it's time to check out the treadmill in our community workout room.

 I got my candy station article up. Yaaaay! I had a bit of a problem with it, but I think it has been solved. Tomorrow is trying to salvage the fracking forum article. I missed the forum held this past week at the university by me, so I need to make it up somehow. I also sent out a resume for a position I found out about on the secret Facebook board for the major newspaper I worked at. We'll see how that goes.

 I was surprised when my primary doctor called me again today. She sent in a referral for me to get something biopsied. When I called to schedule the appointment I nearly fell out of my chair when I was told she sent me to the minor surgery clinic where physician's assistants do biopsies! Physician's assistants do biopsies now?! I told the scheduler no way. This was a cancer scare at one time, so no way will a physician's assistant take this out if need be. This would be different if it were an ingrown toenail, but it's not. My primary said fine. We chatted about some other stuff that I need to do. I really like her and appreciate these calls, but am honestly shocked because I've never heard of a primary doctor doing this.

 I need to do some work on my social anxiety. I nearly had a panic attack over going someplace this morning. Is it that I don't want to do it? This is pretty frequent though and not just for events that I'd like to go to.

Friday, September 26, 2014-I was very happy to get a call from the police department regarding my hit and run. They have two possible suspects! They asked me some questions and told me they'd stay in contact.

 I spoke to a neighbor who is a friend and was sad to learn that she and her hubby are renting out their place. I totally understand though and was happy to talk to her. They're moving close by though, so hopefully I can see them after they move.

 My church contacted me about heading up the public relations for their big annual Halloween party. I contacted a news wire service for them and got some options. Hopefully the church is on board with the idea. This party is so unique that I think it deserves wire coverage.

 As for work, I watched the fracking forum online to see if I could pull out an article from the speakers. No. Even though (much to my chagrin) I've pulled off articles from simply watching online events, I can't do it this time. Too many variables are missing.

 And the week is now over.... I'm happy to be getting things done and feel more productive now than I did a few months ago. 

Friday, September 19, 2014

The Weather of Hell

 Orange County, California, felt like hell this week. I'm not kidding you. It was as if the sun lowered itself to the ground and maniacally laughed as we went about our business. It was truly horrible, reaching about 110 degrees at one point. My friends in Kansas and the South are probably laughing at me now that I can't stand weather like that, but it's true! It was terrible! 

Saturday, September 13, 2014-It's too friggin hot. Really, it is. I really don't want to get in the pool because I just got my hair did yesterday, but it's hot! Taking out the trash was also horrendous. I had to step outside. Blech... I'm trying my best to stay cool today!

 I caught up on some work since I only put in a short time yesterday. I put up an article today about important items that will be discussed at this week's city council meeting.One of the blessings of working from home is that you can get your hair done in the early afternoon without anyone saying anything, but it sort of messes me up since I function well with structure and routine.

 I also spent time in prayer in the evening. A friend literally called me when I was done. I told him his timing literally couldn't have been better. I mean, literally.

 I also joined an online support group for people with pituitary tumors. I'm just totally amazed at the great information I'm learning. I about died when someone mentioned that they too had issues with their sense of smell. I can't smell anything unless it's super strong, which has caused some problems for me. I guess it's common with these tumors! I think this will be a great benefit to listen and empathize with the stories of others. In fact, I wanted to reach through the screen last night to hug a woman with the same type of tumor I have who's having issues conceiving. She seemed so sweet and I felt bad for her.

Sunday, September 14, 2014-Happy Birthday to Robyn!

 My church had their annual Noah's Ark themed sermon today. They did a great job with it, as usual. Like the 9/11 memorial, this is also another nice tradition. I think the thing that I always get out of it is that God doesn't promise us perfect lives, but he does promise that he'll protect us during the storm.

 There was a petting zoo, including a cute doggy I petted. Kids got free pony rides and there was low cost food-hot dogs, snow cones and cotton candy were available for a dollar each. It's great PR to bring in families.

I felt bad for this little baby being out in the sun. 

 It's over 100 degrees today. It's just terrible outside. I felt bad for the animals in the petting zoo at church, for they had to be out there with their built in fur coats. I just really want Fall weather to start in. This is terrible! I guess it's Indian Summer?

 I'm having car trouble again, so I went over to my parents house after church to ask my mom if I could borrow her car tomorrow to go get a medical test done. My dad took a look at my car, but I'm seriously thinking I need to start the hunt for a new one. I just started working again too. Please Lord, let my car keep running until I start bringing in many paychecks again.... 

Monday, September 15, 2014-I had a CT-scan done this afternoon at my medical group's Irvine location. As I've mentioned before, I had a cancer scare four years ago. A CT-scan then detected a spot on my lung and chest wall, so my primary doctor at this medical group wanted me to repeat the test to see what's happening there in 2014. The earliest date they had to get me in was today at their Irvine location. Otherwise I would have been waiting a few more weeks to get this done closer to home. 

 I like it that my medical group puts interesting art on the walls at their hospitals. This is okay, in my opinion. I like the art better at the one in my neck of the woods though. :) 

 It is still over 100 degrees. It seriously feels like Hell. I finally took a swim this evening, which felt wonderful. My city opened up the community center and called it a "cooling center" because it's obviously a spot to go for air conditioning. I'm sure it must have been packed! 

 As for work, I scheduled an appointment to tour the alumni house at the university I went to. It's a nice facility that they rent out for weddings. I also spoke with the local dog park's foundation board regarding their volunteer needs and also updated my social media freelancing pages. I also emailed a Huntington Beach wedding site to see if I can profile them also. 

Tuesday, September 16, 2014-It's 107 degrees today. I like air conditioning. Air conditioning and a nice, cold pool are all I need today. I feel like hell and will melt if this goes on any longer. When will it ever stop?! Make it go away! :) 

 As for work, I went to a city council meeting last night where I got two stories. I guess it's terrible to park in my city's downtown parking structures because bodily excrements are commonplace. An ordinance was passed last night forbidding loitering in these structures to stop this behavior. I also made another appointment to see another wedding site. It's a stable in Huntington Beach. The council also voted unanimously to provide body cameras to police officers also in my city. 

 Wednesday, September 17, 2014-Still terrible weather! It was almost as if the sun came to my patio and sat there today, taunting me as I worked with my little fan beside me... I was amazed when it significantly cooled down in the evening. There were nice cool breezes that really took me by surprise! 

 It was, of course, a swimming day. No way around it. There is a blessing to living mere steps from the pool! 

 I also took care of more recycling. Eight bucks worth! Woohoo! ;) I could go to Carl's Jr. after setting aside my tithing portion! :) 

 The doctor's office called about the CT-scan. I guess all is well. I figured as much since I'm still alive. :) They'll repeat the scan in a year to see if the spot on my lung has gotten any bigger. My primary doctor said lesions on lungs very often end up being nothing. 

Thursday, September 18, 2014-It substantially cooled down today! Hallelujah! It was still nice though to work someplace else with air conditioning. Thanks Mom and Dad! :) I got up the article about the ordinance passed by the city council forbidding loitering in parking structures. 

 I also took my mom to pick up the dog from being groomed. We both laughed when we walked in and this schnauzer walked up with the employee and looked at us like, "Can you take me home? Like, now?" 

 I also called a cousin of my dad's this evening because my dad and I are long overdue to go see him. He currently has Stage 4 colon cancer, so we can't wait too long.

 I also spoke to someone I worked with at a major newspaper in the area. He said we should go to lunch together. Being careful, I told him to clear it with his wife and in fact bring her along. :) He's 60 years old and has five adult children, but I don't care. I tend to attract the interesting ones, and I didn't want him to get any wrong ideas.

Friday, September 19, 2014-Payday! Yaaay! :) I put up another article about how the police in my city will now wear body cameras. We are the city that had the Kelly Thomas incident, so this is a step towards transparency.

 I realized some things today about a family member that were sad, yet liberating at the same time. All I can do is move forward.

 It was cooler today! I was so thrilled! Hopefully this weather continues! Since it's September, I'm beginning to think of other exercise to do besides swimming now. I need to check out our small gym in our community area here at my complex.

Here's to cooler, functioning weather this coming week! 

Saturday, September 13, 2014

A Note To The Parents Of Lyda Loudon

 Dear Gina Loudon,

 I read your blog post about your daughter Lyda and her boyfriend, who I watched in Scarface ages ago. I write this to give you my perspective on age difference relationships. I, too, have been there and would like to offer my perspective as you and your husband go through this time.

 I have to admit that I gasped a little when seeing the now viral paparazzi pic of your daughter with Steven Bauer.

 "What the hell?! A 39-year age difference?!" I said to myself.

 I stopped myself then and remembered.

 Who was I to judge? After all, I dated a much older man too when I was a youngster.

 Granted though, things were a little different in my situation. I was five years older than your daughter, almost out of college and the man I dated was only a meager 19 years older than me. A spring chicken compared to a 57-year-old! :)

 I hooked up with M a week after breaking up with my normal age difference boyfriend. M and I met at my college internship. He was an employee there and was a nice, yet geeky guy. We established a friendship and he offered to help me out with getting a portfolio together the weekend I broke up with my boyfriend. We met at Denny's and he asked me out that night to a Dodger baseball game. Naive and still thinking he wanted to be friends, I said sure.

  I told him to meet me at my parents house and I'd be there shortly after going to a friend's party. Seems logical enough, right?

 I get to my parents house and we leave for the game. I saw the geekiness and possible ADHD that night. I nearly held on to the passenger side door as he drove us back on the freeway. He dropped me off at my parents and I literally ran to the door after thanking him for taking me to the game.

 Whoo! I was out of the car! I made a mental note to distance myself from him.

 The next day came and my mother was angry with me that I was late getting there. I won't divulge what the fight was about, but it was beyond stupid. I was so angry at my parents and their anger towards me for something so ridiculous that I left. I was staying with them a few days and just had to flee the scene. I was just pissed. Where could I go for the day though?!

 M's! He was an escape!

 I called him crying and asked if I could just simply come over to talk. (Yes, I was a quite naive 23-year-old...) He said sure and added in to bring my swim suit, for we'd go swimming in his condo pool.

 I went over and vented. He agreed with me that it was ridiculous. He said we should go to dinner and a movie that night. Sure? What the hell... I changed and we went swimming. Oh was he touchy touchy in the pool. Nothing sexual, but I knew...

 We went out that night and made out during the movie. On the ride home. In the pool again. It's seriously amazing we didn't have sex in there. Not kidding you!

 And so, I was dating an older man.

 My parents anger soon subsided. They were in shock that I was dating an older man.

 To their credit, they didn't overreact to this. There were some similarities that they got to know. He was born in the same state as my dad and actually lived in the city my dad was born in. M's family was a lot like my dad's. My parents talked to him. They listened. They invited him over for the holidays. Even though politically they vehemently disagreed, they knew he was overall not a bad soul and somewhat liked him. Somewhat....

 Among my friends, Robyn was the first to hear about M. I visited her one evening at her apartment and told her I was dating a guy 19 years older than me. The first thing she asked was if he was married. No. Did he have children? No. She was okay with it then. Which brings me to this point-STEVEN BAUER HAS TWO CHILDREN OLDER THAN HER! I had to say it....

 I think I hooked up with M that evening because it was a novel thing for me to do. I had never rebounded so fast after breaking up with someone. I think I also wanted someone to take care of me. I even joked with him at one point during our relationship that he could have been a teenage dad to me. He knew that. I had also never dated someone so much older. I kind of liked the adventure. And, like you said about your daughter, I'm kind of an old soul myself.

 To be fair, M had also never dated someone so much younger than him and was also just happy to be dating again. I think we needed each other right then. Sad to say....

 There was positive in the relationship with him. We went on adventures together. I went to San Francisco with him one Thanksgiving. We stayed with his sister, who lived in a nearby suburb. We would take day trips together and I actually could intelligently watch the Oscars that year because we literally saw all the movies for Best Picture. He also would tell me that I couldn't ever give up on goals. It just was not something I should ever do.

 Honestly though, THERE WAS A NINETEEN YEAR AGE DIFFERENCE. I didn't want to bring him to parties with me because I knew he wouldn't fit in and would probably argue with my Christian friends. (Don't tell me that your daughter's friends want to hang out with a 57-year-old man. Don't tell me that your daughter would want him to either. I wouldn't believe it.) We didn't like the same foods. He swings too far left for right-of-center me. I finally broke it off with him 11 months later. Oh, we thought we could be friends though. Hah. I learned then that it's not possible.

 You seem to consider this a left and right issue when you state in your post, "It would be interesting to see how “tolerant” the left is when the woman in question isn’t one of them. It would be interesting to see the “Christian compassion” of the right when it came to this story as well."

 Um, tolerance isn't the issue here. Compassion isn't the issue either. This isn't a right/left issue. This is an issue of a barely legal girl possibly being abused by an older man. I asked myself whether I would have dated an older man at age 18 and the answer is no. I had a father who would have killed any older man who touched me then. I had a healthy fear of my parents then, which your daughter obviously doesn't have. 

 I shook my head as I read your logic. 

 "I told myself, there are worse things. She could be an addict or a bad person. She could be in rebellion against us or living carelessly. She isn’t."

 Bahahaha. She's rebelling. Who the hell are you kidding? 

 "We have never had a concerned moment with Lyda. She will tell you that she is far from perfect, but she does not drink (despite tabloid reports)... She is committed to waiting until she is married to have sex."

 Despite tabloid reports. Hahaha. And sex will come into play. Trust me. HE'S A 57-YEAR-OLD MAN WITH TWO KIDS THAT ARE OLDER THAN YOUR DAUGHTER! 

 One thing I do agree with you on is that the situation needs prayer. It's not good. It doesn't sound like you endorse this relationship, but it also sounds like your daughter doesn't have a healthy fear of you either. Headstrong is good, to a point. 

 Your daughter will probably break up with him. Too much is against them here and the differences are probably great. Don't be naive though in the process about your little angel. 

 God Bless You, 


Friday, September 12, 2014

98 Degrees

 My friend Robyn says it's cold back in her neck of the woods, whereas it's hotter than heck out in Southern California. To say I'm a little envious is an understatement!

Saturday, September 6, 2014-A school sign said it was 98 degrees out while I was driving. Blech! The car had air conditioning though.... Air conditioning is good....

 I soon made it to a local place while running an errand where I was due a free soft drink. I took it! It was just too hot today. I also got some ice cream at the store. Cold is good on 98 degree days!

 I put up another article and did some other work. I finally cleaned when I was done. Way past due.

 I finally had to get in the pool or feel like I was going to die of a heat stroke. Where are you, Fall?

Sunday, September 7, 2014-I hate humidity. It feels like I'm living in Florida today. I just feel terrible. I swam in the evening. I felt I had to or else die of a heat stroke-again...

 I did some more cleaning. The living room is way past due for it.

 I took a nap in the afternoon because I felt terrible. Terrible is my theme word of the day. Lol

Monday, September 8, 2014-I got up earlier and started work earlier. Yay for me! There is hope after all. ;)

 I watched a Webinar and got necessary work done. I did some research for an article. Very interesting what I found.

 I was blown away when my primary doctor called me to check up on some things. I have never had a primary doctor check up on me before! Will I actually like this medical group a lot? Looks like it so far.

 It actually sprinkled today. It's still cloudy, so maybe there will be more rain in the forecast. California sure needs a rain dance-and stat!

Tuesday, September 9, 2014-I had a post procedure checkup. Everything looks good, so I see the doctor in three months. Yaaay....

 I did some research for a wedding article theme and sent emails for it also. Single me ooohed and aaahed when looking at some of these places.

Wednesday, September 10, 2014-I woke up dizzy, which is never fun. It subsided though.

Work included putting up an article about local museum exhibits. I also took care of my recycling today and sent out emails for other article themes. I noticed through my Google Analytics account that Huntington Beach is a popular search item for weddings. Getting married on a public beach wouldn't be my cup of tea, but it looks like I'm going to write about it! :)

Thursday, September 11, 2014-I was stoked to get two responses to my emails. One is the alumni house to the university I attended. It looks gorgeous to get married at. The other is for candy stations. I asked a woman who does high end candy stations if I could interview her and she said yes! Eeek! She does candy stations for famous wedding planners, which is why I asked.

 Since it's the 13th anniversary of 9/11, I went to see a local memorial that's always awesome. A firefighter puts up a memorial in his front yard each year that's just beyond incredible. I like making this a yearly tradition to go see. It's obviously very popular, because the local media cover this memorial every year without fail.

Friday, September 12, 2014-I finally used my Groupon to get my hair done! It was sorely needed! She was a nice woman and told me she'd charge a decent price if I came back to her monthly to touch up my roots and gray hairs. I just may do that. She did a good job.

 It was hard to hear some family information from my dad. It gave me perspective on another family member who is really suffering right now. That's hard to watch.

 I'm stoked about some progress I made this week article wise and also about some information I got from my reporter neighbor regarding a city council meeting next week. I'm happy that he trusts me enough to give me that information.


 And so, my week. Stay tuned for the funness of next week. Yeah, right! ;)