Catching Up

Summer was busy with lots of changes. Some good, some not-so-good but what can ya do, life is all about change.

Funnest parts of Summer were dogsitting Blanche & Honey Badger & Spikester, housesitting, Diane & Kelly invade Colorado,  my trip to CA to hang out with my parents for a week and dinners & fun-time with Tim & Brian. And Aigneis and Mildred and Tucker and Mr. Zigglesworth.

After answering way more Craigslist ads than I thought possible...and talking to way more "interesting" potential landlords than I thought possible, I moved late August. Back in Superior, a neighborhood that I cherish that's super close to work which my commuting budget loves. Superior is very much a bedroom community... a very spendy bedroom community...but the views and the parks and the proximity to most (definitely not all) of my my favorite people and places makes me really happy. And content. For now.

Had a scare several weeks ago when my Dad was rushed to the ER. We almost lost him but luck was on our side. Not going to say a whole lot about his situation out of respect for privacy, but he's doing much better now. Much better.

Still on the path to getting debt-free...closer than I was last time I blogged. The move put that on hold for a bit, but now I'm back to making progress. Yay for progress!

My friend Ryan is my inspiration. So is Mortgage Free By 30  As well as No More Harvard Debt

Mr. Money Mustache is a local blogger that has a love for bikes and common sense ways to grow your 'stache.

My daily inspiration is Dave Ramsey.  His podcasts are free and they're a lifesaver. Every time I walk into Target I'm listening to a Ramsey podcast on my phone. Have any debt-reduction/frugality blogs you'd like to share? Leave the links in the comments.

I've gotten really good at saying no to anything that costs $. Ask my friends that issue invite after invite. If it involves money and even if it doesn't cost money but requires gas to get there, 9 out of 10 times my answer is no. Short term situation for long term rewards. Haven't been to a concert in ages. I love concerts...used to go all the time when I first moved to CO. They're not in the cards anymore. 

Back in the day when I was married and we were getting debt-free from $75K in consumer debt, my go-to answer was "is it a want or a need". These days my response is "INITB"...It's not in the budget. So when you start seeing INITB on my Facebook posts, you'll know what that's all about!

Finally, let's chat about blogging. I've been doing this for awhile...since March 2004. Doesn't seem like 8 years have passed, and I'm glad I've kept my blog active even tho it's been dormant a time or two.

It's been great to go back and read the archives and see where I used to be to where I am now and I'm sure the same will hold true years from now.

So that's my news...what's up with you?

 

 


What I've Learned This Week...

PEOPLE

When all is said and done, it's all about how we treat the people in our lives. How we show love. Respect. Trust. Faith. How we praise and motivate and care. How we inspire. Everyone wants and needs a little respect, trust, praise, faith and love in their lives. Are we doing all we can to deliver?

 

WEATHER 

Would falling snow be as enchanting and magical if we called it frozen rain? The power of words and the word choices we use. A topic for a future post, perhaps?

 

GIVING UP vs MOVING FORWARD

Giving up in order to move forward. I'm ok with that. Especially tonite.

 

That's what's on my mind tonite.


Ever Have One Of THOSE Days?

Like I had today?

In the space of 10 minutes I : Turned off my alarm in my sleep, woke in a panic cause I was running late, forgot to take my meds, forgot to pack my headset, left for the gym without my work clothes (had to come back for them), realized I never froze my lunch bag cooler so left without lunch  and discovered my brand new Kia displaying a Tire Pressure Warning. 

All before 5:15am.

But instead of rolling over and going back to sleep (believe me, it entered my mind) I worked out to no music, deleted weights from my workout routine  since I was running late (but still did an hour of cardio and 25 minutes of water aerobics), had the presence of mind to grab an apple & Justin's Nut Butter pack  and a  banana before I left my house so at least I had breakfast.

Super hectic day that turned into a  super hectic afternoon. At one point I had the thought "I am dying for a Coke" and refilled my water glass instead. (Coincidentally, it's been two weeks today since I've had a Coke). Took my lunch much later than planned and  boy did that Larabar I hid in my locker come in handy. 

So what did I learn from my day?

Two things. It's good to be prepared (having healthy goodies to grab and go) but it wouldn't hurt me to be more prepared. And get more sleep so I don't sleep thru my alarm. And those of you that really know me TOTALLY know where I'm headed!

STEP AWAY FROM THE INTERNET!

Need to spend some time winding down at night, prep my gym bag & work clothes, go to bed at a decent hour...like 10pm (no later).

Check, check, check.

Thing #2?

My new motto :

Screen shot 2011-10-03 at 10.13.43 PM

I saw this message about 3 weeks ago. It had the effect of a sucker punch as well as the proverbial lightbulb going on inside my head. And I'm really tired of excuses. While some of them are valid, I'm still tired of them.

I'm in control of my destiny and excuses will be my downfall if I'm not careful.

Long story short, I'm making smart lifestyle changes that I'll clue you in on one of these days.

In the meantime?

NNSD!

 

** nnsd = when we were kids my parents would read bedtime stories to all 5 of us. At the very end, right before they turned off the light, they'd say "Night Night Sweet Dreams". I loved that phase and voila, that's what nnsd stands for!


So...

Long story short, something's been wrong with me for awhile. I have extreme dizziness...don't know why...and it's getting worse. It's not vertigo. I've been tested. It's not anything having to do with ears or eyes...I've had those tests too. Anxiety was considered a cause but after visiting a Biofeedback Clinician and having her witness one of my 'episodes' she urged me 5 times in 3 minutes to get a brain MRI. Stat.

So.

Had one scheduled last week and even tho I've had several MRI's before (none were of the brain) and I thought I could handle it, to be blunt, I 'freaked the fuck out'. Severe claustrophobia. Hyperventilated. Couldn't stop crying. It was horrible.

I've started using a trek stick to help maintain my balance as I walk. It used to help but lately things are getting worse and tomorrow I'm looking at getting an actual cane. This is all so weird.

Having an Open MRI on Thursday which I hope I can manage. Anything has to be better than the closed MRI. I'm still having nightmares from that episode.

I miss walking unassisted. I miss being social. I base all social plans on how close I can park to where I'm going and how much walking is involved. I loathe walking into and out of work each day and do everything I can to stay away from the food court and the rest of the mall. (Wide open spaces are much worse than small spaces).

So that is what's going on in Kathyland. Thought you should know. Not for sympathy. Not for anything but keeping you in the loop. Life is short. Don't take your health for granted.

Over and out for now.

xo


3 Re Weekend

The last 8 months have seen lots of change in my life. 

Since last September, I've : Found a new place to live (closer to work), moved out of the room in the house I shared with my buddies Brian & Tim, fell and tore my meniscus the week before I moved, was on crutches the month prior to surgery, had surgery, had P/T post-surgery, had several personal issues mixed with the ice and cold that Winter brings and tossed in with a side of  my life as I know it.

I needed a break and decided to get away for a long weekend. A weekend just for me, only for me, where it was all about me. A getaway to Relax, Reflect, Restart. I wanted to retreat to a place that was quiet. With a comfy bed. With down comforters and pillows. With a huge soaking bathtub and lots and lots of hot water. I was craving warmth and comfort and peace and quiet and coziness.

So 2 months ago I added a vacation day to my normal Friday/Saturday day off schedule and this past Thursday I checked into to my private getaway before I left for the 14th edition of Ignite Boulder. Which was an awesome start to what I hoped would be an awesome weekend.

Initally, I'd hoped to make it an internet & cell-phone free weekend and my cell was actually off for most of Friday. However, as I turned it on late Friday night to see if I had a call from my Dad, I was surprised by quite a few texts/voice mails regarding something beyond my control but something that I wanted to be made aware of. It was all good and led me to realize that sometimes it's better to have everything in moderation rather than all or nothing.

My weekend's been AMAZING. I've slept more than I have in ages and the quality of sleep has been superb. This Winter has been particularly hard on me (mentally, physically, emotionally), so much so that all I crave lately is warmth in my surroundings. Toasty warmth with no shivering :-) This weekend there's been long stretches of time when I've been so content it's like I'm in heaven...it's that perfect!

Every now and then, you have to listen to yourself, really listen, and give yourself what your body and mind and soul need to be 100%.

Solitude combined with down comforters, spa-like surroundings, lots of hot water and knowing that I'd budgeted enough to pay cash for my weekend made for a wonderful long weekend.

In less than 12 hours I will have checked out and I'll be back to work and back to my life as I know it.

What I took away from this getaway is a renewed sense of what I need to be happy. A quiet space (animal free, kid free, roomate free, noise free, cold-free) every now and then is crucial to my happiness. And until the day comes when I no longer have to rent or share living spaces, I might need to stage a get-away every 6 months or so.

Granted, this might sound trivial and even petty to a lot of people, but it's what I need in order to be happy. Some people go shopping, some people take drugs, some people skydive naked. I like cozy, warmth, peace and quiet.

Sometimes the little things can make the biggest difference in your life.


It Was The Best Of Times...

...it was the worst of times.

A week ago today I was at work and took a call from my Dad only to find out that my beloved Auntie Irene, my Dad's sister, had passed away earlier that morning. It's tough when you get calls like that at any time of the day, but especially when you get bad news while at work.

I reacted as I'd expect anyone to react, crying, more crying, stepping away from my desk and crying some more. Auntie's death was unexpected. She'd had surgery several days earlier and breezed thru it, only to crash two days afterwards.

One more family member gone. One more family member transitioned to Heaven, to join the rest of our family. That's my belief about Heaven. When my Auntie Maggie passed away after a bout with lung cancer, she came to me in a lucid dream several months later. It was one of the MOST lifelike dreams of my life and she assured me that Heaven is a wonderful place and all our family members were there, happy and content. Then she told me who the next member of our family would be on their way to heaven soon...and don't you know, she was right.

For the rest of last Sunday as well as for the rest of the week, I was a little more introspective than usual. A little quieter as well. 

As much as I love CO and my life here in CO, certain times make me wish I lived much closer to my family. Sometimes all you really want to make everything better is to be with your Mom and Dad and Brothers and Sisters. My friends-like-family here in CO stepped in and were there for me in ways great and small. My buddy Jill came to stay the night with me. My darlingingst of darling friends HDW offered me whatever it took to make me feel better and my work team was amazing.

Took last Monday as a Bereavement in order to get my heart and thoughts in order. There'll be a memorial service in the future which I'd like to attend.

The rest of the week was a mix of good and great and sad and uplifting and challenging. You know, pretty much like the week you had and we all have every week.

When all was said and done, Faith got me thru the week. Faith as it pertains to my religious beliefs and what happens 'when it ends'...as well as Faith that God/The Universe/Karma will get me thru what I need to get thru.

Faith for trials and challenges both miniscule and gigantic...at least gigantic to me.

So if you're not having the best week/month/year, have Faith. And keep hanging on, cause things WILL get better. 

xo

 

 


Goals

Refresh your browser and check out my new spiffy design. You like?

My design's not the only thing that's spiffy. After staring at the boxes occupying my living space for the last 32 days, I finally felt I was healed enough to take them on.

So from 11am-11:45pm I cleaned, unpacked, lugged, sorted, vacuumed, laundry'd and in general was non-stop busy trying to get my place from Box City to a nicer Kathyland. Oh, I also cleaned my truck out in the process!

It was tough to accomplish without bending, kneeling, pivoting, lifting but I managed. I'm beat and I know I'll feel this in the morning, but the feeling of productivity - plus my place looks so much nicer - makes it all worthwhile.

I figure one more 12 hr Saturday should do the trick.  And before I forget, anyone need moving boxes with clean packing paper?

NNSD xo <3

 

 


Busier Than Busy

Need to wake up in 5 1/2 hrs, so I'll make this quick.

* I'm back to work

* Still in Physical Therapy

* Today is the first day since Oct 4 that I did not use my crutches in any way, shape or form!

* Still have a ways to go until I'm fully healed - 6 months +

* Envious of people that can walk without limping :-)

Ignite Boulder tickets are almost sold out...don't wait to get yours!!

* Miss my former roomies but love my current living sitch

* Adore my landlady and her two kids - they are all darling and kind and sweet :-)

* Miss Daylight Savings Time

* Still not unpacked from my move due to limitations from surgery. And a small percent due to laziness. But mostly limitations from surgery. Moving my unpacking deadline to Dec 11.

* Realized today that I am happier with more sunlight in my life. Need to start taking advantage of daylight hours.

* I need to ditch the CFL lightbulbs in my room. I know that's not very EcoFriendly of me, but they hurt my eyes and make me feel like I live in a cave. And depress me and make me sad. Out they go!

* Spending time with friends that let you help them clean?? PRICELESS!!

And that's what's new in Kathyland!

NNSD for now :-) xo <3


Boo!

I'm updating! Scary, I know!

While some may call today Halloween, most everyone in my family calls it 'Two Days Before Kelly's Birthday".  Which it is! I'm sure the festivities started last night and will continue well into the next two weeks until our collective family takes a breath...then ramps up for Diane's birthday (Nov 27).

I'm still on leave from work :-(  It's weird, I'm sad, I miss everyone. I'm not used to being off work without being on vacation..and I'm definitely NOT on vacation so I guess I'm in limbo? Whatev.

Now that I'm feeling somewhat better post surgery (I can now sleep all thru the night HELL YEAH!!) I've tasked myself with unpacking. Still have lots moving boxes littering my living space and now that I'm more mobile the moving boxes must go. My space is limited so I'm getting extra creative in figuring out where to put everything..a far cry from what my buddy Andrew Hyde is experiencing!

Once everything's unpacked I'll take pix of what I no longer need/want and post them on my blog so keep an eye out if you're interested! My goal at being totally unpacked is Thanksgiving. 

I've also started a running To-Do list of things I've been meaning to do forever but haven't. Things like :

* Input all my paper scraps of addresses & info into Address Book

* Update / Revise my Contacts into said Address Book

* I owe Abby & Jeanine long-overdue update emails

* Sort thru two huge bankers boxes of pix in the hopes of scanning them someday (need a scanner first, tho!)

* Meet with a financial planner to strategize on the best allocations for my 401(k)'s

* Fine-tune budget

....you know...stuff like that!

Started Physical Therapy last Friday. A far cry from what I expected but so far so good. I'll be going 2x week for the next month and then they'll re-evaluate to see where I am. I've made it this far without having to break into the Vicodin (no, you can't have my leftovers, they're already spoken for!) and am hoping that trend continues. Not as much as painful as it's unstable...it's like my knee has a mind of it's own and isn't sure where it wants to go. Weird sensation, at least for me.

Finally, I'm thrilled that this is the FIRST Halloween I've experienced in CO that hasn't seen a snowfall by now. So. Happy.

Snow will be here soon enough (boo!) and I'm thankful to be enjoying the remaining snow-free days of Fall.


10 Loves 10 Hates 10 Surprises

Several summers ago my buddy  Tom  suggested I create a 200 Things About Kath post. I'd be hard pressed to come up with 100, much less 200 things, so in the interest of procrastinating, I came up with 10 Loves, 10 Hates and 10 Surprises (things you may not know about me).

 

Ta Da, here they are!

 

10  Loves

 

CO sunsets

Smell of freshly mowed grass

Happy, smiley, positive people

My family & friends who are like family

Receiving a hand-written note in the mail (Aree, Syd, Jillian - I'm talking to YOU)

When a gut feeling pays off

Ignite Boulder Organizing Peeps

When the weather report calls for snow but you wake up to a sunny day

Weiner Dogs....ok...ALL dogs!

My dream job that came true Dec 15 2007



10 Hates


Cigarette smoke

Whiney, negative, sarcastic people

That teleportation isn't a reality

Intolerance

When people give up on their goals and themselves

Improper use of the words their/they're/there & you're/your

Milk that isn't ice cold

ICE (not the kind in drinks, tho)

Cilantro

Squeaky brakes


10 Surprises


Tattoos freak me out so much that I can't look at them and will do whatever I can to avoid looking at them

I've never passed out/thrown up/had a hangover from drinking

Bit my nails until the day I turned 35 then stopped cold turkey

My Mom let me smoke a cigarette when I was 4 in the hopes I'd never smoke. It worked.

I would give up my life in exchange for a cure for Pancreatic Cancer

For the last 2 1/2 years I make the same wish every time I see a shooting star. No, I'm not telling you what I wish for.

The older I get, the more annoyed I become with negative Nellies. Grow a pair and get on with your life.

Every time I mail a letter or a card, I kiss the back of the envelope

Ahavachesed is my personal mantra

I grew up reading about a Christmas miracle where every Christmas at the stroke of midnight all animals can talk. For as long as I had a  dog, I never gave up hope the story would come true.


 Your turn!

 


Unpacking For The Next Month!

The household goods that I put into storage on 11/19/2009 arrived today.

 

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OMG, the boxes!! Moving from a 3 bed 3 bath house into a walkout basement with a kitchenette will result in too many boxes, not enough storage. Trust me :-)

 

IMG_0982

IMG_0984

Some of my discoveries were a welcome surprise  (the iron doggie sculpture & my George Forman Grill) and some were "OMG, why did they pack that"? ie the recycling (thought I had emptied it - guess I didn't).

With tomorrow my last free day before my surgery, I know the unpacking process will take a bit longer than I'd like and I'll have to be fine with that. (Really I won't be fine with that - hello OCD??- but it's all relative). Thank goodness there's plenty of space in my landlord's storage room. I've made a dent in the kitchenette and whatever's not unpacked by tomorrow night will go into the storage area after I get off work Sunday night. Out of sight = less clutter = less crazy Kath. Eventually I'll get everything unpacked.

I knew having my stuff delivered right before surgery would drive me crazy in some respect, but having my couch, comfy chair, dining room table, my George Forman Grill...would make for a nicer, cozier, more conducive-to-having-friends-over (hint hint!!) recuperation.

Things are a little crowded right now, but once my landlord sells the lovely pool table that inhabits my space I'll be able to move the dining room table to where the pool table now sits, resulting in a less cluttered, more open space. (Know anyone that wants to buy a pool table?)

OK, break time over,  back to unpacking :-)

 


Going Mobile

This Monday will be two weeks since I've been using crutches. It's opened my eyes to so many details that affect people with limited mobility.

*When you use crutches, you're extremely limited as to what you can carry in your hands

*Opening doors in public places can be tricky

*Transitioning between floors where there are no elevators or escalators is also tricky. And ouchy.

*It takes so much longer to get where you need to go...shopping, work, meeting friends for dinner, etc. And let's not even talk about 15 minute breaks at work :-)

*Crutch chafe :-)

I'm lucky! This is a temporary thing and I'm hoping to be off my crutches and back to walking unassisted by late November.  I've been amazed how many complete strangers have gone out of their way to open doors, share encouraging comments, ask if I'm ok!  My co-workers have been so fantastically supportive and caring - which is no surprise considering how awesome everyone is ( I work with phenomenal peeps!!) and all you guys - my internet buddies both local and long-distance have been very generous with offers of love, support, transportation & post-surgery nom-noms.

I have it made. My injury has  made me even more grateful than I normally am to have such a wonderful support system. It's also made me more open to receiving help - an area  of opportunity I've blogged about before. 

Looking at this whole experience as an adventure. Also learning lessons about taking mobility/life/health/great insurance for granted. Not that I really took them for granted 100% of the time but let's just say I'm really appreciating that I'll get the chance to be fully mobile in the near future :-)

Surgery is scheduled for Monday Oct 25. Out of work for 10-14 days afterwards. In rehab from Oct 27 until whenever I no longer need rehab. Can't conceive of being out of work for that long without being on a vacation - that will be uber weird, plus I'll totally miss my work buddies like you can't believe.

Thank goodness for the internet :-)


What's New in Kathyland??

Plenty!

I moved into the new place in Superior! My former roomies Brian & Tim helped and did an AMAZING job at helping!! Seriously, you should be lucky enough to have B&T as roomies...or just as friends.

A couple of days before I moved I fell while at work. It's sorta embarassing, but as I reached to get a label above and to the right of my desk, my chair submarined out from under me and I fell down & went boom. It all happened in total slow-motion and I was more embarrassed than hurt...until I discovered the huge purple bruise on the bottom of my right arm the next day (was actually pretty scary even tho it was a lovely dark shade of purple). Two days afterward my right knee started to hurt...then went from slightly hurting to OMFG this HURTS!

So after a trip to the ER, I'm on crutches and awaiting the results of my MRI later today. Initial diagnosis is a sprained knee...the MRI will show if there's any further damage.

For the record, crutches suck. Gives me a renewed appreciation for being ablebodied. The kindness of friends and strangers overwhelms me on a daily basis. And it takes me 20 minute to walk into and out of work everyday. My biceps are loving the crutches tho :-)  At least one body part is happy!

This next part? Well, I've never really talked about the "private" part of my life cause I'm a private person. But after discussing this with Brian (whom I love and adore and TRUST!!) I decided to take his advice and share it with you. Ready? Here goes.

I'm ready to start dating. (Just gave myself chills by typing that!!) But yeah, it's time. Bri urged me to try the whole online thing so I filled out a profile. But really, I don't want to pay for a subscription before I've exhausted all my FREE resources. That's where you guys come in :-)

I'm gonna post what I would say in an online profile here for all of you to see. If you know anyone that might be a good match, have them read my blog and send me an email. I've met most of you via the internet and can't imagine my life without you in it...so why not try to find a partner the same way? Right? Right!

Here goes.....

I once said "I Do" and thought it would last forever. 20 years later, he decided he didn't love me anymore. Figured I could either curl up and die or start over. So I started over and never looked back :-)

 My life is awesome! I'm blessed with incredible friends, a job I ADORE, I'm debt-free (and plan to stay that way!), amazing family in CA, and I live in CO which is the coolest state EVER!  Having someone special in my life would be a nice-to-have, but not a need-to-have.

 My favorite words to live by are "You drive your destiny" and "If you will it, it's not a dream". Basically, if you want something bad enough, you'll make it happen (Legally, of course!)

 The no-kids thing is a deal-breaker. Decided when I was 8 I didn't want kids and have never changed my mind. Am the oldest of 5 and helped my siblings raise their kids. Colic, teething, terrible two's? Been there, done that, no thanks :-)

 Grew up in CA, have lived in VA, FL, Northern & Southern CA and now CO. Never leaving CO, it's heaven on earth. I came here to start my life over which has been one of the best decisions I've ever made.

 My ideal match?? Don't know if "Ideal" is realistic, but here's what that might look like.

 You're kind when no one's watching. You respect & love your family, friends, and friends who are like family. A friend's good fortune makes you happy for them instead of envious of them. You count your blessings on a daily basis. You assume positive intent. You're a man of integrity, honesty, ethics, compassion. You do the right thing because it's the right thing to do. You love to laugh and do so on a daily basis. You are absolutely awed by the beauty that is Colorado. You are open to the possibility of trusting yet one more person with your heart & soul. You challenge yourself to be a better person on a daily basis.

 In the 'little things matter dept" - You're clean, neat, drug-free, smoke-free. And yes, 420 is a drug!

 Debt-free is something I've worked hard at achieving. Flashy cars & expensive toys don't impress me. I sold my house to move closer to work and got debt free in the process. Someday I'll buy another house and when that day comes, I will be in debt, but not for longer than 15 years.

 So that's what I'm all about & what's important to me. Notice I didn't say anything about long walks on the beach, finding that 'perfect soul mate' or any of that other  crap. Yeah, that's not me. I'm not status quo and couldn't be happier :-)

 Thanks for reading! 

So. There it is!

If you send someone my way, great! If not, that's fine. I'm going into this expecting nothing and if something happens to happen, even better!

I'm off to sleep for now while you (and the internet) do your magic :-)

NNSD!

 


And The Winner Is...

I chose a rental over a purchase.

It was tough, with my "want" of having a home of my own butting up against my "need" of staying as debt free as possible. In the end, the need won out.

My awesome realtor Angela Fox is an amazing ally (and friend) who listened to everything that I wanted in my next dream house. She was patient and shared my optimism that somewhere out there was MY dream house. Angela was my voice of reality and kept me on track for what my budget would allow.  Not one to pressure at all (which I LOVE!!) she guided me through neighborhoods I might not have  considered.

Some of the homes we viewed were the epitome of handyman specials while others seemed just fine until you noticed all the cracks in the walls. Authentic hardwood floors are nice, but a faulty foundation negates the appeal of any type of flooring. And while handyman specials don't scare me, the homes we saw would have required $25,000 or more to fix up, which would have eroded my downpayment of $30,000. There was one absolute stunning standout that I adored, but it would have resulted in living paycheck to paycheck and I just didn't want to go down that road. 

Getting debt-free took some doing. And now that I'm there I am loathe to go back. I realize that when I eventually buy a house I will incur debt, but it has to be within a comfortable range commensurate with what I make. Until I can find the perfect-to-me house that fits the bill, it's not gonna happen.

Ultimately, I decided to keep renting.

Next weekend I'm moving into a basement. Not just any old basement! This is a beautiful walk-out basement with a huge bedroom (with fireplace!), gorgeous bathroom (granite countertops, 2 sinks,and a window at which the ventilation freak side of me rejoices), custom-designed walk-in closet, kitchenette and plenty of additional space as well. It's so much space that I'll be taking my household goods out of storage and moving them into my new place.  I'll also get to park in a garage which means no more scraping snow off my windshields. And? Two blocks from the dream job. Which rocks!

While I had hoped to end up in "my" dream house, in a way I guess I'm there after all. Yeah, my name isn't on the mortgage, but it's giving me everything I need (for now) and will be an inspiration for what I eventually want for the future!

This week will be a blur of work, decluttering, packing, changing addresses, and all the other details that come with moving. Yay!! 

I'll DEFINITELY miss my awesome roomies who have been so wonderful, kind and caring. Seriously, best roomies ever! They're even helping me move & won't let me pay them! Who does that?? Brian and Tim do!

I won't miss the commute. Or the cats - sorry Tucker and Ziggy - love you guys but don't love what your cat dander does to my eyes.

On the other end I will love my 3 minute commute,  more sleep that a 3 minute commute allows, spending way less on gas, living closer to Boulder, and the awesome view of my next door neighbors, the Flatirons.

I'm at peace with my decision. Have several irons in the fire where not having a mortgage or being locked into a certain location may be an advantage in the long run. We'll see where the Universe wants me to land.

But before any moving happens, I need to prepare :-)

Taking a week off from blogging. Next stop, Superior!


Thursday...

A day of rest, relaxation, househunting in Erie, meeting with trusted medical advisors, new adventures with new friends, paddleboating in City Park, catching up with long-time friends, CO sunsets & realizing that moving to CO was one of the BEST decisions I've ever made.

Thursday was one for the books :-)


My New Crush!!

Ahhh...my new crush!  It's only been 3 days since this crush developed, but oh, what a 3 days it's been!

It started innocently enough. We met at the Starbucks upstairs near my place of employment. What started as a lark soon turned into a full-on 'must-have-every-day-in-my-life' kinda thing.


My new crush isn't a person (yeah, like I'd talk about anything THAT personal online) but rather a food I'd never really liked and wasn't that enamored with.


Yogurt. Yep, Starbucks Strawberry & Blueberry Yogurt Parfait.  I've NEVER liked yogurt. It never filled me up, always tasted like fruit-filled air, and never really floated my boat. Oh, I'd TRIED to like yogurt. The whole 'eat it cause it's good for you' reason is why I used to buy it only to have it sit in my fridge and go bad cause I hated it in the first place.


But this Starbucks Parfait Yogurt?? OMG!!! Delish like I can't describe (without the granola tho. Granola = YUCK in my book).


Maiden tasting voyage was Tuesday morning. I'd gone upstairs to get a Venti glass of ice (Vitamin Water tastes so much better drowning in ice) and altho the Raspberry Swirl Pound Cake looked good, my gut instinct told me to go for the yogurt. I was all  "WTF gut instinct???", but obeyed the feeling.


OMG - Couldn't believe how good it tasted. Wound up sharing my opinion of my newfound love in the breakroom with my coworkers who I'm sure thought I was nuts. But I couldn't stop talking about how good it was. Had it again Weds. Then once more on Thursday.


Two downsides that I can see - #1 -price - $4.73 (w/ tax) a pop #2 I can't be going to Starbucks every time I want one of these yummy treats.


Late last night on my way home from Ignite Boulder Speaker Practice I swung by King Soopers to stalk the yogurt aisle. Sadly, none of the labels touted 'Tastes Just Like Starbucks Yogurt Parfait" so after reading a ton of labels I went with Stonyfield Yogurt


It was ok, not as good as Starbucks but not bad.


So I'm reaching out to you guys!  What is your favorite yogurt that you can't live without? That tastes good & is good for you? Preferably organic, if it's not too much to ask? And not too spendy either!


Crushes are a good thing so please send a new crush my way, ok?


That Was Then...

This is now!

Wow, what a difference a couple of weeks makes. I've been busier than busy with work & dog-sitting & training & life. The new place in Thornton?? LOVE IT!  My new housemates? LOVE THEM! The kitties I thought I would be deathly allergic to? Hardly at all!

Life in Thornton is AWESOME!

My housemates are really and truly amazing. I feel so comfortable here not to mention welcome! I won't go into detail out of respect for their privacy, and I wish I could tell you more about them, but for now I'll say they are kind, considerate, loving, hilarious and T is a great cook :-) 

My room is almost double the size of the last room I rented, my bathroom has a huge soaking tub  (last place had no tub), internet connection is blazing fast (not one dropped connection so far!!) and B & I both prefer cooler over hotter.

Also?? HE Washer & Dryer are PHENOMENAL!!  Yay for technology!

I'm off work for the next 3 days and need to put the finishing touches on my room.  Yeah, there will be pix!  And more blogging!

My goal for this summer will be to settle down, slow down, and live each day deliberately and fully.

Happy beginning of Summer 2010 :-)


Goodbye Superior :-(

Last night in Superior :-(

Tomorrow I move to Thornton for a week of house/dog watching. The following week I'll move into the townhome I'll be sharing with a co-worker and his partner.

What I will miss :

Proximity to work, my 2 minute commute, proximity to Boulder and seeing the Flatiron Mountain range up close and personal every morning as I leave the complex. I'll also miss spending $80 a month for gas.

What I won't miss :

The crappier-than-crappy internet (I've been kicked offline 12 times in the last 2 hours), the uneven floors & doors, the single pane windows, freezing in the Winter, sun glaring thru my window every morning at 6 am, dogs that shed massively, fluorescent lighting, mail that never arrives even tho it's addressed correctly.

Other than raising my rent with no warning, I've had a good roommate. It woulda made for a better quality of life if he'd spent more time away from the place, but that was out of my control.

I'll be moving to Thornton until Jan, at which time I'll have to move again. Certainly hope THAT move will be into a house of my own, but I'm open to that not happening.

Moving sucks. Still, I'm remaining hopeful that this move will work out ok, even with cats. Two cats.

NNSD from Superior for the last time. Lots to do, little to pack.

Let's get this party started. In the morning.

:-)


I'm Really Not Brave

No, not at all. 

Not when it comes to listening to the last gift you gave me.

You were never one for gifts...it just wasn't 'you'. It wasn't a bad thing and I never held it against you. Yeah, it woulda been nice to be surprised every once and then, but it wasn't your style so I pretty much accepted it and never thought anything of it.

About a month before the end came crashing down, you surprised me out of the blue with a CD of one of my fave 80's groups . You knew I'd been looking for it for years and it was nowhere to be found. But you tracked it down and found it and gave it to me and I SCREAMED and cried and hugged you so hard you almost passed out. 

I played it for 2 weeks straight from sun-up to sun-down.

Then two weeks after that we had the conversation that changed our lives forever. I moved out 2 weeks later.

I didn't play the CD for another 4 years. Even tho I'd healed and moved on and was fine, it was that one little remembrance  that took me totally & completely off-guard.

I'm playing it now as I type this post. It's raining and the wind's blowing pretty hard. Much like the weather we had that January back in college when I heard the album for the first time.

Time & Time Again
Mike Rutherford "SmallCreep's Day"
It's been so many years since i saw your face,
But now i'm home again back in my old place
And though you're not quite sure you think you see me by the door
I'll be there.

When the winter comes knocking on the door
And you've the firelight dancing on the floor
In the dead of night when every star is burning bright
I'll be there

Time and time again
I am always there to see you through the night
Time and time again
Rest your tired head and it will be alright
And after all is said, is said and done
Oh god you'll never know
Just how lonely life can be for me.

So let me tell you now what it's like to be
The one whose memories are scattered on the sea
When the wind goes down you'll see them lying all around.

On a cloudy day, high up in the sky
There's a lonely bird who's sailing round and round
Looking for a place to land down on the ground, for a while
Over and over again
Please give your love to me
Throw it in the wind and i'll be there.

Deep within the darkness i'm the shadow next to yours
I'll be there.

Time and time again
I am always there to see you through the night
Time and time again
Rest your tired head and it will be alright
And after all is said, is said and done
Please give your love to me
Throw it in the wind and i'll be there.


Moving Day Approacheth...Again.

Seems like yesterday that I moved from my house out in KS to the rental across the street from my perfect job. More like 7 months really, but it SEEMS like yesterday.

And now I'm getting ready to move again.

Current roomie's rent was increased and since I wasn't keen on paying an extra $300 a month to stay (and signing a year lease) or (per his suggestion) move into a 3 bed, find another roomie and sign a year lease, it was time to start looking.

Search accomplished!

Am moving in with a work buddy & his partner...and their cute little dog and equally cute 2 kitties. Yes, I know. Kitties. I'm allergic to kitties. Wish I wasn't, but I am. I'm not allergic to trust & friendship, and trust & friendship is what won out in this equation.  My new housemates keep their place really clean and will deep-clean before I move in. I'm getting a hepa-filter. Will keep my bedroom door closed at all times.  Flonase & Claritan will be on hand. I'll make this work.

I'm moving to Thornton, which is roughly 25 minutes east of my perfect job. There may be opportunities to carpool (several co-workers live minutes away) and it's 2 blocks away from Ella, the canine cutie I dog-sit for every now and then.

Moving mid-May and I'll be there until January 2011, at which time their lease ends and I'll (hopefully??) be ready for my next house. And if not, I'll find another place to rent.

Since I'll be on the move for the next year plus, I got a Post Office Box yesterday. The mail at my current location has been a nightmare so figured a PO Box was a wise move.

I'd hoped to be ready to move into a house of my own by now, but since getting debt-free I really don't want to buy unless I have close to 50% for a downpayment.  Rather be safe than sorry.

I'll be sending out a group email with my new address next week.

In the meantime, I need to start packing :-)

Dollars, Decisions, Destiny

I'm debt-free. Totally debt-free. Don't owe a cent to anyone or anything.

Got debt-free on March 23 at 9:23 pm. I'd been carrying a too-large balance on my VISA (bad Kath) and had a Nordstrom card with a $505 balance. Also had a nice amount set aside for my next house...not talking about millions, but enough to make a nice downpayment.

I'd started reading Dave Ramsey along with Suze Orman back in the day when I was married and in huge debt - upwards of $76,000 (not including our mortgage). Took 4 1/2 years to get debt-free. Hard work! Had a mantra of 'Is it a want or a need'? for the entire time. Lived on $20/week fun money, $20/week gas money & $100/month grocery money. Piled the rest onto our debt. Lived on a cash basis with strict accountability. Got a second job. Then a third job.

That was then, this is now.

I 'almost' learned my lesson, but not quite. Post-divorce I'd accumulated some debt. Paid it off. Accumulated more. Paid it off. Then realized that I truly honestly HATE debt and do not ever want to have it in my life. So I raided my house fund and paid everything off. Paid off and CANCELLED my Nordstrom card. I'm not a 'shoppy' type of chick, but I love me some Merrell's (comfiest shoes EVER!) and Nordy's has an excellent selection of the comfiest shoes EVER! Paid off and performed plastic surgery on my only remaining credit card...then took a picture of it and have it as my cell screen saver.

IMG_0115

(notice it's a library book??) Why buy a book when you can read it for free? :-)

Can't believe it took so long for the 'ah-ha' moment to hit. I shoulda done this right when I sold my house, but I didn't really stop to do the math. Once I did, it made sense. And now that I am debt-free? I'm reevaluating everything in my life. My purchases. Why I spend what I spend...and what I spend it on.

Had decided to keep renting my room a little longer and postpone buying my house. My new goal is to put 50% cash down on my next house, get a 15 year mortgage and a house mate, and pay it off in 7 years.

Monday afternoon my roomie advised me that he needed to raise my rent by close to 50%. His lease is up and he needs to do what he needs to do. Understandable, but I'm not comfortable paying 50% more. 

Did I freak out when I heard the news? YES!! Hell yes!!  You might recall that I live ACROSS THE STREET from my perfect job. I <3 my 2 minute commute. And I'd finally changed over all my records to this address. I am comfortable. Settled. Life is good!

But you know, change is good too! And as much as I HATE the saying 'things happen for a reason'....things really DO happen for a reason.

So I'm no longer freaking. Instead, am choosing to see this as an ADVENTURE, with moving and packing thrown in for good measure. At the very least, another excuse to further declutter my belongings.

And know what?? Being debt free when life yanks the rug out from under you is a good thing..a very good thing.

So boys and girls, I'm looking for a new place. Have several options in play and hoping to hear good news by Monday. Am open to where the Universe wants me to land. And I'm excited for this change! Yeah, even tho it means changing my addresses all over again.

While I may not have control over the changes that are driving my move, I'm always in control when it comes to driving my destiny.

Going with my gut by getting (and staying) debt-free, being open to change, facing the change with happiness and a positive attitude, and being excited about the changes to come is making Kathyland a really interesting place as of late.

Thanks for sharing the ride :-)

Time Flies aka Happy Blogiversary To Me

6 years ago last week - March 23rd, to be exact - I started a blog. The one and same blog you're reading right this second.


Back then I was in 'starting-over' mode. Fresh from a divorce, in the first house I'd ever bought on my own, living in Boca Raton, FL,  I'd recently discovered blogging and figured I would give political blogging a try. That lasted two days once I figured out political analysis was not my forte. Not Even!

Figured I should focus on Life in Kathyland instead which has worked out pretty well.

If I knew then what I know now? (Typing that just gave me goosebumps)

I love my life and I definitely love all of you that have made my life so enjoyable.

Blogging has led me to all of you...all the amazingly awesome people I can't imagine NOT having in my life.

Honestly, starting my blog is one of the best decisions I've ever made.

Thanks for commenting, sharing and being a part of my life.

xoxo