Friday, March 28, 2008

Snow!?

It snowed in Portland today. In March. What the fuck?

After the snow passed the city spent some time alternating between blindingly bright sun-shiney goodness and complete downpour.

The day Colin died was like this, strange weather that swung from one extreme to the next. I spent most of today completely pissed off before realizing that was why. I had forgotten how strongly the weather affects my mood. I had forgotten how it can bring back memories so vivid for me, sticky, visceral, bloody, screaming, loud, acrid memories. It makes my bones hurt, makes me feel dull and scratchy like wearing panties that are too small.

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Old Friends

An old friend visited me at work the other day. Linda is a former employee of mine, among my favourite employees of all time. She is a very sweet lady, and why she liked me as much as she did was always a mystery to me. We have virtually nothing in common and used to enjoy very passionate conversations about our differences in opinion. She's highly conservative, right-wing Republican, Christian ... mostly all the things I am not.

Linda was like an older sister to me, with a very clearly developed sense of the important things in life. She didn't put any importance on age, or social standing, or sexual orientation, or religion. She was one of the few women in the office who didn't look down upon me because I was such a young supervisor, or because I dropped out of high school. She loved her friends just as they were, and graciously avoided the people she didn't care for. She could always be counted on to do her work well and be a role-model for others in the office; she could always be counted on to do whatever I needed her to do. She could always be counted on to smile at me and give me an encouraging word when I needed it, no matter what she was feeling personally.

Linda got married and moved away a couple years ago, out of Portland. I've missed her ever since, often using her as a secret barometer of a "good" employee. We've stayed in touch, but I'm not very good about communicating with friends long distance. We exchange a dozen or so letters a year, but I really miss talking with her. I miss seeing her every day, and having her influence in the office. I really enjoyed visiting with her, and was so pleased she stopped by when she was in town.

So if you're reading this it's likely because you know me in some capacity and we are friends. If I suck at keeping in touch with you, please know that I don't mean to. If I don't pay as much attention to you as I should, I'm sorry. I'm not the best friend a person could have, but I do love you all very much.

Monday, March 24, 2008

Citrine

I mentioned in my last post that Tanya had given me a citrine; I really like it and it's the first stone of my new collection (the collection I had when I was younger has been long gone). As soon as I got the stone I started sleeping extremely heavily. I haven't been able to remember any of the dreams I have and I've had a very difficult time waking up each morning. One very positive effect is that I have not had any nightmares. This is significant because I used to have them several times a week, often nightly.

The only time I've had either a bad dream, or somewhat restless sleep was when the citrine was out of the room or in a dish of sea salt. I'm using the amethyst I picked up recently to draw off some of the effect of the citrine, to emit some calming energy to diffuse the strength of the citrine, and I think it's serving exactly that purpose. A couple nights ago I had them together in a bag under my pillow, and I slept as hard and deep as ever. Last night I moved the bag to the shelf above my bed and it was a little better. I didn't sleep as hard and I woke frequently, afraid I was oversleeping. I haven't found the right balance yet; so far using these two stones seems to have me at one extreme or the other, but I'm enjoying the process of trying to find what works best.

Friday, March 21, 2008

Stones

Work has been crap this week. I put in well over the required hours and thought I deserved a break, so I took the afternoon off work today and spent the afternoon shopping with Tanya.

I've been looking for some stones but have not have much luck finding exactly what I want. Today we wandered into The Third Eye and I found several very perfect, very inexpensive stones. This lot cost me nine and a half dollars, so I'm rather pleased with myself. I'm inclined to cleanse them one at a time so it may be a while until I can begin working with them, but I think they will work out very nicely.

I've got amethyst, amber, moonstone, watermelon tourmaline, blue lace agate, jasper, blue tiger eye, and rose quartz (in no particular order). I also have the citrine Tanya gave me and a garnet I picked up last week. I've got a great collection so far, but I'm not done yet. I'm still looking for a bloodstone and a bit of jade. I have plenty of things made of jade, but no stones. My husband gave me a small carved jade cat when we were first dating, and I recently picked up a jade ring, but I just can't see a stone collection of mine without it.

Sunday, March 9, 2008

Emma

I gave one of my kitties to the humane society today. Emma has been with us for almost five years and it was very difficult. We got her, and her brother Zoe, when they were six weeks old. My dad had given me a kitten, Widow, shortly after Colin died. When Widow passed away, Jeff and I picked up Emma and Zoe from a family friend. They helped take my mind of Widow's death and I bonded with them both very strongly. I have always liked having a lot of cats and eventually talked Jeff into getting Paper last year. Emma didn't deal well with Paper joining our family and hasn't really been doing well since. She had started to show some aggressive behaviour, and she very clearly resented having him in the house. There have been many battles for dominance, but she has never really claimed her place as the alpha. The two boys have taken over, and mostly they just make her miserable.

The apartment we're moving to only allows for two animals and we decided we want to keep the two boys and give Emma up for adoption. Though the choice was very clear for us both, it was hard giving her up today. When the boys would leave her alone, Emma really was very lovable and sweet. It wasn't often that she'd get the peace from the others to play and be friendly, but when she did she was a terrific companion. I think she knew that we were preparing to give her away because yesterday she cuddled with me on the couch all day, which she hadn't done in a very long time.

I feel like a real shit of a cat-mommy right now.

Saturday, March 8, 2008

Quiet Saturday night

We went to a friend's last night, for wine and bullshitting. We played a variation of the game LIFE, called Real LIFE. I've never played LIFE before, but I suspect that Real LIFE is much more fun. The squares have events such as "get shot in a drive-by shooting", and "use drugs". We did a lot of giggling.

Tonight I talked my husband into playing Scrabble with me. We haven't played in a long time, mostly because board games are not his first choice of ways to spend a Saturday evening together. Our Scrabble board used to come with us on camping trips. My favourite place to play Scrabble is in Bryce Canyon, Utah, right in the middle of the day when it's the hottest, but even then it's just a touch cold for me unless I'm in direct sunlight. I think that vacation was the one I enjoyed the most.

We drove all day and all night and arrived in Bryce early morning on the second day of our vacation. Driving through the night made us both a little off-kilter so we slept most of that day and night. We didn't quite feel human until the third day of the trip. By that time, the camp-ground had filled up with other couples and some families. Next to us was a younger couple who spent most of their time fighting with one another until past dark. On the other side of us and across the road was a young Asian couple; the boyfriend was celebrating his birthday and invited us to join them. We didn't, because we're rather standoffish and because I was afraid of people in Utah, but I think of them sometimes and wish I hadn't been so closed off and suspicious of strangers.

We played a lot of Scrabble on that trip. Tonight reminded me of that vacation. In Bryce, we were surrounded by chipmunks. They would come right up to me and take food offered if I held very still. During the day we hiked around some, and drove up to the look-out points. Standing up there, separated from certain death by a three-foot railing and seeing for miles in every direction, there was a little part of me that wanted to jump off the railing, just to see if I would fly.

Saturday, March 1, 2008

This weekend's project

Last year one of my employees picked up some knit and crochet patterns for me at a garage sale. Someone had taken the time to print patterns from the web and put them into sheet protectors. Whoever did this project stuffed several patterns inside one sheet protector; there are dozens, possibly over a hundred.

I'm pleased to have the patterns, and wonder at who would be getting rid of them. Someone went to a tremendous amount of work to put all this together. I wonder if the person who collected the patterns died, and their child or grandchild doesn't knit or crochet and so decided to get rid of them. They weren't even for sale - they were given free to anyone who would take them. Someone, somewhere didn't see the value of what they had and I feel like I have a little piece of someone's grandmother.

I bought some three-ring binders and a box of sheet protectors, and today I'm going through all the patterns and putting them into their own sheet. Of course, I'll have to organize them by style, cross-referenced by type, size, and gender ...

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