Down with the Crud, Putting the Business Together Little by Little…

Well, the last couple of weeks have been such an unproductive time. This is not to say that progress in any area hasn’t been made, it just has felt like there was so much more I could have done, though I am unsure exactly what that would have looked like. Perhaps I am just a bit anxious over the recent financial changes and dueling with my inner demons.

I have spent the past two weeks with the nasty crud that has been going around. I have a day or two where I feel pretty good, followed by days of wondering if my stomach is ever going to stop feeling horrible, along with being tired. I’m so sick of being sick.

One positive to being down is that it has given me some time to read some books about starting a dog industry business, work on the business website, come up with a name for the business, and get a better grasp on the direction I am pointing myself in. Better finances would make this a bit easier to do, but I am doing what I can as I can and that is better than nothing.

The name of the pet sitting, house sitting, and dog walking business I am starting is called Dog & Den. There will be a LLC at the end of that, hopefully in the near future, but it’s a start and won’t cause huge problems to add later. I’ve looked into insurance and the cost isn’t that bad (about $200-ish), but is also on the back burner waiting for its own funding.

As I said before, I want to have dog training be a part of this business, but I have not been able to move forward with that part, as of yet. I have reached out to the trainer that my friend referred me to, but I have not heard back from her, as of yet. I’m so anxious to get going with it that not hearing back is giving the doubters on The Committee more fuel to throw in their two cents even louder. God, I wish I knew how to shut them up. I am ignoring the feelings of defeat that want to try to take over because of it. I will move forward one way or another, whether with this trainer, another trainer, or finding/coming up with the funding for school. This is happening and is something I now realize should have happened many years ago.

We had almost a full week of frozen pipes here. Running water is such a wonderful thing, and something I have come to take for granted. Frozen pipes meant no showers. Unfortunately, as the pipes thawed, one of the pipes in the 5th wheel burst, so there is still not running water in there to take a shower. Right now, even if the pipe hadn’t burst, I still wouldn’t be able to shower since we are out of propane. Thankfully, Lance has found work and we should be able to start taking care of all that needs to be taken care of in the ‘keep moving forward’ category, like propane and such.

I wish some cleans would come along, though I get the feeling that run is over with for whatever reason. I could be wrong. Either way, I am still going to need to find an income to either go along with the cleans as I build the business or replace the cleans altogether.

I’ve been trying to come up with some fundraising ideas, but this has never really been one of my strong areas.  Ok. That may not be completely accurate. I’m not familiar with how fundraising works, what types of things work for raising funds, and how to actually promote the fundraising in a manner that makes it do what it is supposed to do – raise funds. There are about a gajillion things online about it but so many of the stuffs I have found that way either require funding to start fundraising (??) or sound completely like scams. The others that don’t fall into these two categories seem unrealistic and/or I just don’t understand how to make them work. I could be over thinking it a bit since it is something I am unsure of, something new, but I don’t know. Maybe it sounds overwhelming to me. New stuff usually does.

Well, I should head over to my business site and work on that for a bit. If anyone wants to give me some suggestions about fundraising, please leave me a comment – I’d love to have someone, or a number of someones, to brainstorm with.

Have a great day, Everyone!!

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End of One, Beginning of Another…

The New Year is upon us and I hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas full of great memories. 2016 was a less than awesome year for me, though I can’t honestly say that it was completely horrible. Sure, there were a lot of challenges that came along to be dealt with, but it could have always been so much worse and there were a lot of really great moments along the way. That said, I am hoping 2017 turns out to be a much better year with less challenges and tons more great moments along the path.

I am still looking for ways to replace the lost income from the common area clean. Thumbtack has not turned out to be successful, at this point, and I am now out of credits to place quotes on requests, without having earned even one job. Maybe I’ll try again at a later date. We shall see.

I’ve looked into the pet sitting idea – what it takes to get started, how to move forward with it – and am going to go ahead with that as I can. Funding at this point is the main barrier between me and moving forward with pet sitting. I could always just start going with it without the business license and insurance, but that just seems like a way to invite the not so good things right in the door. It could be just fine without any bad happening, but, with the way things have presented themselves over the last 8 or so years, I feel that making sure all of the important things need to be in place before getting started. Maybe I’m just scared, though I don’t think completely unnecessarily so.

A friend of mine referred me to a dog care and training facility near me. She has known the owner of this place since she was a kid. Anyway, the center offers grooming, service dog training, dog obedience, a training camp, and an assortment of other dog-centered services. My friend said I should go talk with the owner about wanting to learn how to train dogs professionally and about wanting to start a pet sitting business. She doesn’t want to see me spend money on a dog training school when she knows I can get the same skills without spending money, plus there would more than likely be a lot of referrals for dog sitting. Another bonus would be that, if there is a position open, I would be able to make money at the same time. Sounds like a win for me. I am going to go talk with the owner of the dog center this week, once I am not feeling like I may just empty the contents of my stomach at any moment – not the first impression I want to make.

Have you heard of Teespring? It’s a site where you can create t-shirt designs and sell them. It costs nothing to do, you promote your ‘campaign’ on social media and such, Teespring handles all the shipping and stuff. I decided to give it a whirl. I have nothing to lose and possibly a little money to make. Do I believe I’ll make it rich, or even be able to support my family, this way? No, not at all, but something is better than nothing and maybe this will bring a little something into the budget. I’ve created one shirt already. You can find it here. (feel free to buy one – or a few. You know where the money is ending up) 😉

For the most part, I am not succumbing to panic over the loss of income. It’s really hard and I know there is at least one Committee member that is in there screaming at the top of their lungs, endlessly, but panicking is not going to solve anything. I have had a few moments when panic has started to rule the nest, but I shut it down as quickly as possible. If I’m panicking, I can’t think, and if  I can’t think, then I can’t figure out the solution. Deep breaths, which don’t always work. Just saying. Sometimes, I have to just stop thinking for a moment or so in order to get back on track.

Anyway, that’s really all that is going on here. I have to admit that I have started thinking about Spring, though I suppose that really isn’t a surprise from me. One of my Christmas gifts this year was basically Spring in a box – bulbs, seeds – and I am super excited to get those growing (Thank you, Lauren!). One of these days soon (hopefully), when the ground isn’t frozen like it is right now, I am going to throw the bulbs in the ground. I now have a few different types of lilies that are going into the mix, and more tulip bulbs. The addition of these items has started the mental image to form and it’s going to be absolutely gorgeous!!

Have a great day, Everyone!!

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Pet Sitting Gig Completed, Future Planning….

Well, my 17 days of dog sitting is complete. I have to say it was definitely a new experience, with a couple of out of my control snafus, but I have to say that I enjoyed it. Sure, it definitely shook up my normal routine and there was a whole lot of time spent away from home, but it was good. New things always mix up my normal routine, and that isn’t necessarily a bad thing.

I said goodbye to the girls last night after giving them their dinner and taking them out to go potty. I’m going to miss them for a bit, I think, especially the pit bull mix. She is such a sweetie with a really fun personality, and the chihuahua mix is somewhat of a bully to her, nipping at the pit bull mix’s mouth and face whenever the chihuahua mix felt like the attention wasn’t centered on her or whenever the pit mix came over for loving. She really is a brute, though sweet in every other way.

The radiant heating furnace went out a few times while I was there. This meant staying over with the girls a lot more than I had planned on so that I could keep a fire going in the wood stove to keep them and the house warm. Of course, the heater went out on the coldest days we have had so far this year, with snow. The couple I was dog sitting for had the heating guy come out and he did get the heater going for a couple of days by cleaning the ignitor, but then we had temps that didn’t get above 34 and went as low as the upper teens, and it went out, again. Bummer. Thankfully, there is a large ‘shed’ stocked full of wood. The girls and I stayed nice and toasty, though the mornings were super chilly to wake up to. We survived just fine.

I have to admit that being in a house was a bit weird, at first. I’ve been living the RV life for so long, coming up on 8 years now, that all the room was pretty uncomfortable for a few days. I did end up settling in and I am reminded, boldly, just how much I miss living in a house and all the conveniences that come with that. Sure, there is definitely a lot more to clean, but…well, more to clean seems like such a small thing in comparison to the conveniences. Eye on the goal completely refreshed.

I have given the pet sitting thing as a new career move a whole lot of thought over the past 17 days. There are some parts to it the I would need to either make peace with or figure out how to handle better if I am to do this. Mainly, being away from home, away from my dogs, Enzo mostly, for so much of the time. They missed me just as much as I missed them.

Enzo cuddled me all night last night, shifting closer to me any time I moved so that he was still touching me. Before going to bed, Achilles laid across my lap the entire time Lance and I were watching TV. Luna shoved her way in to me for loving as often as she could, regardless of whether or not whoever was cuddling me at the time had a problem with it. She can be so uncharacteristically bold sometimes. Silly girl. I was snuggled by the dogs and my husband well enough all night that I was incapable of moving. I love my family, though being able to move while I’m sleeping is a lot more important than I had realized before. It’s good to be home.

I have started researching what it is I need in order to make pet sitting my job. There really isn’t much to get it started – business license, insurance, marketing. I’ve been looking at pet transporting, too. I would need a better vehicle for that, but I’m not ruling it out as an option. I mean, if I’m going to go as far getting a business license and insurance to do pet sitting, I might as well round out available services. I honestly would love to do long distance animal transporting. I’d get to do a little traveling, see some things, maybe, take some pictures. Then there is always pet taxiing – taking people’s pets to the vet, the groomer, and stuff so they don’t have to take the time off of work or spend their valuable weekend time doing so. If I could get the damn van running right, it would be a great vehicle to do pet transporting with – more than enough room to put a few kennels in the back.

While researching pet sitting, I found a company (Home Business Forms) that produces all of the client forms I would need for pet sitting, and pet transporting. They offer different form packages, with one including 63 different forms for $130, or you can purchase individual forms. You receive the forms through email or a CD, then just print them out when you need them. I like this idea because I won’t lose the forms by putting them in a ‘good’ place.

I’ve also looked into dog training, as in going to school to be trained to be a dog obedience trainer. I’m pretty good at the whole training thing to begin with but this would give me some credentials to provide, help promote my services, and round out my knowledge in the area. The school that I spoke with also helps you with writing a business plan, for those that want to start a pet services business, and offers a bunch of other classes that you can add on after the dog obedience courses are completed, such as cat behavior training.

If my credit score was better, or I had a co-signer, there would be no down payment to start classes, and monthly payments would be $130 a month. With my current credit score, I would need to come up with $1000 down and the monthly payments would be about $180. I’m going to have to give this some thought and come up with a game plan on how I would make that work before I can completely commit to this. For now, it will sit in my head, circling, prodding me, until I do something about it.

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Pet Sitting Update, Loss of Income, New (to me) Vehicle…

It’s been 9 days of pet sitting, so far, and I have to say I still think it’s a pretty sweet gig. I feel like I’m running a lot, never home, but the pet sitting part is a breeze and these two dogs have won my heart, not that that is a hard thing for a dog to do. The pit bull mix is such a sweetheart…she is my little pal. The chihuahua mix is a sweetie, too, but, as tends to be the case with so many of the little dogs I’ve met, she has a little bit of a Napoleon complex. She tries to ‘correct’ the pit mix by nipping at the pitty’s mouth. Another tribute to how sweet the pit is…she just stands there and lets the chihuahua do what she does and waits for her escape route away from the nipping. Sometimes, these ‘corrections’ are to say “Hey! Stop getting in my way of this human. She wants to pet me, not you.” They are good dogs.

The radiant heating system went out the other night. Of course, this happened to be the night that it snowed here. It wasn’t a night that I had scheduled to stay with the girls, but I stayed so I could keep them from freezing. The house is equipped with a nice large wood stove, so I had that going. It was pretty cold in the morning, but we didn’t freeze and I got the stove going first thing in the morning. I also hit the reset button on the heater and it seems to working, somewhat, though not the way it is supposed to. The heater guy is coming on Monday to fix that.

My Enzo is not liking me being gone so much, especially at night since he likes to snuggle up with me. I’ve been trying to take some time to just hang with him, but it’s sort of hard to do. Luna and Achilles are missing me, as well, and want my attention, too. New things, new way of doing things. I’ll get it sorted out.

I found out last weekend that the major part of my income is ending at the end of the month. The condo common areas will no longer be a part of my detail. The HOA has decided to hire on someone to live on site and have cleaning the common areas be a salaried position. The property management company the HOA hired on thinks I’m doing a great job and doesn’t think the HOA is taking the right path on this one, but the property management company doesn’t have a say in HOA decisions. The HOA is wanting someone more full-time so this person can pretty much spend their days walking the buildings and cleaning what they see needs cleaning. I guess this position will also include minor maintenance. It’s not a bad plan, honestly, seeing how messy these buildings are/get, it just really sucks for me.

So, what did I do? Well, after convincing myself that panicking isn’t going to be helpful (yes, I’m still panicking only its background noise instead of blocking my view), I began searching for how to fill the income gap. I stumbled across Thumbtack. Thumbtack is an app that helps you find the right professional for the work you want to do, anything from painting to house cleaning to pet sitting – pretty much anything you would hire someone for, even personal training. As a professional on the app, I receive requests for quotes, send a quote (along with 4 other professionals) and then wait to see if the person requesting hires me. The only hitch is, in order to send quotes, you must have credits on Thumbtack.

There are credit packages, the lowest priced one being 20 credits for $30, which doesn’t seem horrible to me. From what I can see so far, most quotes cost one credit. I’ve seen a couple that cost 3 credits and a couple that were free, which of course I bid on. I want to buy the $30 credit package but…well, money is tight and I have to figure out how I pull the $30 out of the budget.

The van is parked, for now. A close friend of mine was getting rid of her 2005 Camry and, when she found out that I didn’t really have a vehicle to get around (beyond the 12 mile radius, no freeway zone I’ve kept the van in), she offered me her Camry for $500, which she is willing to take in payments. The car has almost 300,000 miles on it, but I know most of those are freeway miles and she has taken care of the car and kept on top of the maintenance. I have to admit that, in the short amount of time I’ve been driving it, I have come to love the car.

The worst thing about the Camry is it likes to lock you out of it. Of course, this happens when the keys are in it. Yes, I have already had that happen and 45 minutes of trying to fight my way into it without success left me only one option: break out the little ‘wing’ window in one of the back passenger doors. I have no shame in admitting that this solution brought me to tears. I finally have a car I trust and I had to damage it. I will be cutting out a piece of plexiglass to put in the hole for now.

So, yeah, things look like they are changing around here. Whether these changes are good or not so great is to be seen, yet, though I’m hoping its all for the best. I’m doing my best to keep my eyes open to the potential opportunities these changes may open up for me, despite wanting to just sit and scream in full on panic. Wish me luck!

Have a great day, Everyone!!

 

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A New Adventure Stirring Ideas…

I start a new adventure today. A friend of mine passed along a job that was offered to her but she is unable to take since she has moved out of the area. The job? Taking care of a couple of dogs, a pit bull mix and a chihuahua mix, for 17 days while their owners are out-of-town. I will be going over a few times a day to feed, exercise, and let them out to potty. Three nights out of the week, I will stay over with the dogs.

I have to say that this is a pretty sweet gig. It pays much better than I had thought it would and its doing something I love to do, anyway – take care of dogs. This is a total win in my book, and it has gotten me thinking about things.

I’ve stated a number of times, many many times, that I am sick of manual labor and really want to find something that I can make at least what I am already making, hopefully more, that isn’t so darn taxing on my body. I know I said I was going to take real estate classes this winter, but, once I gave myself permission to do so, I seem to have lost the level of desire to do so that I had had before. Don’t get me wrong. Real estate is still a passion of sorts, but I no longer feel like getting a real estate license is how I will/need to entertain the passion. I’m not sure what that looks like anymore so it will have to just sit on the back burner for now.

This pet sitting gig has made me wonder if maybe this would be a really good avenue for me to pursue in order to get out of what I am doing. I’ve started researching this type of business and what is involved in starting and running a pet sitting business of my own, if even only part-time. It’s good money, the requirements for starting are minimal, and running the business doesn’t seem like much more work than what I am already doing, only less body damaging. It’s something to think about. We shall see how this goes over the next 17 days.

I had been thinking that sitting for these two adorable, sweet dogs would be the first time I would have done any pet sitting, but that isn’t true. I hadn’t thought about the times I had taken care of my friend’s farm when she was out-of-town, or the time I stayed at her house with her two dogs. I hadn’t thought of it as pet sitting, but more just doing something for a friend. Yes, I got paid for it, but…well, I don’t know. It just seemed more like doing something to help out a friend that has done so very much for me…a mutually beneficial favor sort of thing.

Anyway, that’s my new adventure. It definitely is giving me some things to think about in regard to potential future endeavors. As for now, I need to get myself ready to go clean the two bedroom, one bath unit I have scheduled for today. Have a great day, Everyone!!

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Lance is Home, Progress (sort of) with the Van…

Lance is home!! His trip went really well and his teeth look amazing. Lance got to do some hiking around the Bullhead City area while he was in Arizona, something I know he really enjoyed being able to do. The little dog (Achilles) got to do a lot of walking around, which means tons of exercise for this super high energy dog. I’m happy they are both home.

Re-introducing the dogs was a bit tense in the beginning and we are still working on all the finer points of it that come along with RV life (extreme close quarters). Enzo, of course, is defending his “That’s MY mom (toy, space, whatever)” status, but, for the most part, is doing fairly well with things. Achilles, on the other hand, has gotten to be an only dog for the last two months so is having a little bit harder time adjusting to having to share space, toys, people. I’m sure we will be back into our old groove with them soon enough. Thankfully, Lance can be home with them while we go through this transition. I, on the other hand, am a busy, busy girl.

I said in my last post that work had pretty much dried up. It had, and I’ve got the feeling that this rush of work is a temporary thing, with the hopes that I am wrong and the well hasn’t completely dried up until Spring. This back and forth with income is quite frustrating – one check leaving me wonder how we are going to eat, the next looking really great but not leaving much to it at all by the time I catch up with bills. Now that Lance is home, he can find a job and that will definitely help even things out a bit, or at least make them not quite as financially stressful.

SO, since the Taurus quit on me, I have been driving the van. It still sputters a bunch, but not quite as badly as it was when we brought it home. I have replaced the spark plugs, plug wires, throttle position sensor, removed the EGR valve and cleaned the gunk that can collect behind it, which can be a contributing factor to the sputtering, did an oil change since the oil was smelling like gas, did a compression test (it passed), and took the van to Midas so they could fix a leak that occurred when they replace the catalytic converter (the people I bought it from had replaced the catalytic converter at Midas. I have the receipt). I am certain that at least one of the intake valves are blown, which means it’s going to need a valve job, soon. I have never done a valve job and after reading the manual, it seems a bit daunting. I’m not sure I’m comfortable doing that one on my own, but I’ll do some pricing, talk with a few friends and decide how to proceed from there. I’m going to replace the throttle position sensor, again, since I cracked it when I put it in (over tightened a bolt. Damnit!).

The van had been getting a little bit better with each thing I did, but, after I changed the plugs and did the oil change, it is running worse, again. Not as bad as it was when we brought it home, but worse than I had gotten it to. It’s becoming a bit frustrating, but, at least I am still capable of getting to work when it comes up. Extremely grateful for that. If I hadn’t picked up the van, knowing I had to do some work to it, when the Taurus gave up, I would have been dead in the water without a way of getting out of it.

Well, I had better get myself put together. I have a clean today. Have a great day, Everyone!!

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Chaos is Stirring…

I can hardly believe that it has been two weeks since I last posted on here. It’s been hectic and I really tend to lose time when it gets that way. I should write more during these times since it seems to give me a center to use as a touchstone, but, unfortunately, I have not been utilizing that. I just haven’t felt like I have the time and most of what probably would have fallen out of my head would have been vile stuff.

Anyway, as you can tell, chaos has stopped by for another visit. It’s been especially toxic this time, or maybe that’s just me. It has felt like one thing after the other is falling apart and the temporary foundation I had started to build for my house of cards is crumbling. It’s disappointing.

Work has pretty much dried up. Thank goodness for the condo common area cleans or I would have no income at all right now. I’m really worried how I am going to make it through this without it completely knocking down all the progress I’ve been making. My fingers are crossed and The Committee is in a tizzy trying to come up with a viable game plan.

My car stranded me yesterday. The starter and the alternator went out on it. It currently is sitting in the O’Reilly’s parking lot. I have no way of towing it home that won’t cost me money, which I don’t have, so I have thrown it on Craigslist with the hopes that I can sell it quick. At least then I would have a little bit of money to throw into the van. It’s moderately driveable, but I definitely wouldn’t try to go any distances with it. Thankfully, the condo buildings aren’t too far, though there are some hills along the way that I’m pretty sure the van is not going to make it up. I’m still trying to map out a non-hilly way to get there.

SO, Trump won the election. I have to admit that this just really sounds like a horrible outcome but I guess we shall see how well a bigoted, misogynistic, self-center ego-maniac does as a US President. History has shown that having this type of person in a position of power doesn’t usually turn out well, but maybe this time will be different. I have to say, though, that, as someone on the lower end of the socioeconomic scale, I’m a bit concerned how all this will turn out. People on my end are usually the ones that lose the most in this type of situation. Maybe I’m wrong and that’s just my perception. Again, time will tell.

Well, I had better get going on the van. It’s Wednesday and I still have 9 buildings needing my attention and a son that has to head to class at 11am. Have a great day, Everyone!

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Psychopathic World…

My heart is heavy today. I’m having a hard time accepting what the world has become. It is sooo much different from when I was growing up, which is to be expected, I know, but…well, there is so much that leaves me wondering “how the hell?”

My best friend told me a couple of days ago about yet another report of animal abuse that is circulating around Facebook. This one is about a couple of college girls that were going around adopting puppies and kittens from shelters, severely torturing them to death, and posting what they did on social media. One of the girls is going to do time. The other one is not. The belief is that the one that isn’t going to jail is from a family with money and ‘connections’ and they somehow got her out of it. To say I’m appalled doesn’t even begin to cover it.

How do things like this happen? How did these two girls come to believe that what they were doing was all fun and games? How does one girl get sentenced to jail time and the other doesn’t, regardless of how much money is in her family? This story makes me wonder how two potential female serial killers, psychopaths, find each other, formulate this plan of furious disregard for life, go about executing it, and have the whole thing end up with the death of the poor, innocent, helpless animals and only one of the murders is going to have real consequences for it?

It seems like there are more and more stories like this one cropping up every day. Is there an increase in mental health issues going on or has the scourges of the human race just become more visible due to the internet and social media? I’m not just talking about animal abuse, though that is the one that hurts my heart the most, right along with child abuse, but an overall disconnectedness to the value of life, and not just one’s own life? When/how did hurting, torturing the helpless in the world become something so prevalent? How/why are there kids and young adults that are being raised in such a way that they can come to the belief that these actions are acceptable? Is it a lack of parenting? Or just crappy parenting? Or an unnoticed need for psychological help?

I understand kids/young adults can sometimes get caught up in doing things they truly regret later, things their parents would be shocked and appalled that their child would do or be a part of. What I truly don’t understand is why these young people don’t have some moral warning system that tells them they are running headlong into doing the worst of the worst. Maybe they do and ignore it, something else I don’t understand.

Throughout my life, I have felt like a misplaced item in this world – sort of like finding a polar bear trying to hide in the middle of a flock of flamingoes – it just doesn’t fit right.  I hear these stories of animal abuse and I feel even more like I was not made for this world, and want even less to do with it. It shreds my soul when I hear stories like the one about these two college girls’ actions, or the man who throws a dog off of a cliff, kittens stuffed in a bag and thrown in the road to be run over by some poor, unsuspecting driver, etc. Is this really the type of people we want to be? If not, then how do these types of things seem to keep happening with more and more frequency?

No, I don’t have the solution for this. I wish with my whole soul that I did. I try to find solace in the beautiful souls that find, rescue and rehabilitate animals that have been abused, the ones that help abused children heal from their damages. I debate with myself about closing my Facebook account to lessen the amount of disaster and damage I am exposed to, but it is one of the only ways I keep in contact with my family in other states (I’m horrible at keeping in contact in other ways).

This would never end the violence toward the helpless of the world, just my exposure to it, I know that. And, yes, I do think it is a good thing that people know about it or there would be no way of helping those that have been damaged or are in the middle of being damaged, potentially killed, and there would be no way to come up with solutions or ways to bring this sort of thing to an end, if there is any way. I guess I just feel there are people better suited for this sort of thing than I am. I’m sure it hurts their soul just as much as it hurts mine, but the incredible people who make the difference for these abused souls have something that I don’t that allows them to dive, head first, into the middle of the battle and save these hurt ones, even when all that can be done is to make the pain stop forever. The world needs so much more of this type of soul.

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Over-thinking Instead of Writing…

The weather here has been just icky. Rain, some wind, more rain, dark, gloomy….Fall. This year, I seem to be very seasonally affected. My mood has been less than optimal and I am finding it a bit frustrating – its hard to think straight when gloom and doom are trying to take over. It’s a struggle to find the positives.

I’ve been giving my writing a whole lot of thought, lately. I love to write, but I find that I am dissatisfied with what I have been writing, and with the fact that I have not been writing very much at all. I come up with some ideas in my head, but I can’t seem to write them. I think I haven’t found the courage to write the thoughts that run through my mind.

As I’ve said many times before on here, I really over-think things. When it comes to what I want to write about, whatever that may be, I get lost in the self-edit of things – will this offend anyone, what will people think, am I the only one that thinks these things, am I crazy – and other things. It keeps me from writing. I keep me from writing. I talk myself out of it – “who would want to read that?!?”

I know I have grown tired of writing about my everyday life. It’s boring and sounds a whole lot complaining to me. Besides, I’m in the middle of it and don’t really have the desire to walk through everything twice. Sure, writing about some of the things that happen in my world helps me come to some solutions, clears the clutter so I can see things clearer sometimes, but….well, I’m sick of the goings on in my life so how can I write about them? I think to do so and stop before I can even open my laptop, annoyed with the prospect of my life being my topic. There’s got to be something better to write about. This is where I find myself stumbling around, searching for the words, the ideas. My world consists of very little: I work, I walk and play with the dogs, I pay bills, surf Facebook to escape my life and be a part of someone else’s life for a minute, but that is about it.

I don’t follow the presidential campaigns because, let’s face it, it’s a whole lot of annoying, judging, ridiculous bantering that is separating people is such negative ways. Talking about anything political right now seems like lining oneself up in front of the firing squad with the end result being lost friendships and disconnectedness. No, thank you.

I don’t really pay attention to current events. I don’t know why. I just don’t. Maybe I feel like I have too much on my plate already to load on that helping of current chaos. Besides, there are too many things happening, currently, that leave me feeling heartbroken and appalled. Maybe those are just the things that I am seeing and I should look past those and dig for the nuggets of golden truths that feed the soul and give hope that we are not doomed as a society. That seems like such a warrior mission and this warrior is tired.

On an upside, I found myself interested in Halloween decorations the other day. I haven’t been interested in any holiday decorations for a really long time, now, so it was a bit surprising when I found myself in the Halloween section of Wal-Mart, envisioning different decorations in my yard, around my humble gypsy camp, with a spark of excitement and a slight smile on my face. Perhaps this means that there is a part of me waking back up after going into hiding about 8 years ago when lost everything and started RV life.

One thing I have determined is that I need a vacation from my life. Not a “I’m running away and you’ll never find me” type of vacation, but a reprieve from work, RV life, and responsibilities for a couple of weeks. I have no idea how I would make that happen, but its definitely a need. You know, step out of it, re-gather the internal resources, rest up a bit, then jump back in with fire in one’s soul, again. Or at least feel like I’m not under the pile of muck but on top of it, making progress. Yes, I am well aware that stepping out of it for a minute is not going to change anything, the same crap will be waiting for me right where I left it, but I will feel stronger, more capable of facing the challenge with polished armor and the blade of my sword re-sharpened to a lethal edge instead of this blunt butter knife I feel like I’m wielding now as i attempt to slash my way through the brambles and chaos.

 

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Its Cold, Missing Lance…

Oh my goodness, it’s cold this morning!!! It’s 34 degrees! I’m not ready, though I don’t think I’m ever really ready for it to be cold. NOAA.gov says its supposed to be 32 degrees tonight…brrrr! The sun is out during the days, which is a really nice break from the rain, but oh, how cold it makes it be at night and in the mornings this time of year.

Lance and Achilles have been gone for a month now. We talk pretty much every day, whether it be through text, phone call, or Facebook Messenger video chat. We seem to be running into some reception issues, which makes conversations difficult at best. Its frustrating, to say the least, despite the fact that these forms of communication are unsatisfying in the first place.

I’m a face to face type of person. Sure, I can carry a phone conversation along just fine – my best friend and I talk on the phone every day and that works – but…well, its just not the same with an intimate relationship. I want my husband right here next to me, both of us chatting away about this or that. It has nothing to do with physical contact, though that is always nice. Its a presence thing.

Yeah, I know. When Lance is home, I complain about him some. Ok. Sometimes, a lot. Now that he isn’t here, I miss his presence. I’m also having some issues with him being gone for so long because of some of our history. He has left before, for a few months, and …well, I think that I’m emotionally confused about his absence this time. Part of me wants to be mad at him for being gone. Part of me feels like I should be ‘cleansing’ myself of him in preparation for moving on without him. Then I remind myself that this is temporary, that he hasn’t left me, that he is in Arizona doing something really great for himself, and I love that, but the emotions are still a bit jumbled. I guess I’m just not handling the time apart very well, and I feel like I shouldn’t be feeling like I am.

Well, enough whining from me. I had better get myself together for work. Left foot, right foot, right?

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