blog challenge – bullet points

Hope all of you had a great weekend.

I always find Monday to be particularly hard because I’m never quite ready to let go of my weekends.  So, I thought I’d write about something easy for today’s blog challenge entry: my day, so far.

Mondays are actually, usually, pretty easy days for me.  Except for the mountain of email that inevitably piles up over the weekend.  It’s the one work day where I have complete control.  No meetings, ever, because I hate Monday meetings. :)

Lately, I’ve been trying to use Mondays as a scheduling/sourcing day–a day to strategize the week…unless I’m really under the gun.  Today was unusual because the roomie is actually in town, for once, and I had a morning full of medical appointments.  So here’s a snapshot of my day so far.

6:20 am – Wake up.  (Earlier than normal).  Stumble into boxes.  Almost knock over water dish.  Run into trash can.  Turn on the wrong lights.

6:22 am – Grab cat bowls.  Balance them and make my way to the bathroom.
6:22-6:30 am – Wash out bowls.  Try not to get dried fishies on me.  Talk to kitties.  Try not to wake up roomie.  Put food in bowl and manage the feeding frenzy.
6:30-6:45 am Quick bath.  I did not wash my hair.
6:45 am – 7:00 am – Get dressed, brush teeth, put on makeup.  Try not to look homeless.
7:00 am – Login to work. Grimace at emails.  Pray no one pings me because GAWD.
7:00 am – 8:00 am – Send roomie medical info on Fogg’s problems.  Give him car keys and etc.  Comfort Fogg and stuff her in the carrier.  Say bye.
8:00 am – Fogg off to vet.
8:00 am – Get through email mountain.
9:30 am – Run to car.  Dial in to kickoff call for major project.
9:35 am – Roomie grabs Starbucks while I am on call.  Make our way over to Highlands.
10:00 am – Call ends.  Continue traversing horrifying road construction.  Thanks, New Denver.  *eyeroll*
10:00-10:20 am – Circle block repeatedly trying to find parking.  Leave roomie to park in alley and then move car.
10:30 am – Check in at Dr’s office.  Update insurance.  Play with doctor’s little boy.  (We made a house).  Watch TV (corpse flower, ftw).  Talk to dr’s mom (the receptionist).  Talk to patient with appointment before mine.
10:55 am – Dr’s early.  Takes me back.  We talk cute glasses and dresses.  Lung check, BP/HR check, questions about many things.  I’ve lost weight.  I feel good.  Life is grand.  Lab slips.  Hug goodbye.
11:20 am – Take photos of flowers.  Squint in sun.
11:22 am – Leave Highlands for Quest.
11:53 am – Say hi to cute old man working security.  Sign in at lab.
11:56 am – 8 vials of blood!
12:01 pm – Did not pass out.  Now urine!
12:05 pm – Panera for soup.
12:35 pm – Home.  Fogg greets me, crying.
12:36 pm – Hug Fogg.
12:37 pm – Back to work.  (no one missed me).
12:37-3:30 pm – Sourcing, emailing, and etc.
3:30 pm -4 pm – Training for this morning’s project.
4 pm -6 pm – Sourcing, emailing, and etc.
6 pm – Bye roomie! See ya in three weeks!  Feed kitties.
6:15-7:15 pm Work some more.  Wash face.
7:15 pm-9:00 pm Maybe eat.  Or nap.  Probably nap.
9:00 pm Medicine.  TV.  Water refills.
10:00 pm Wash face/brush teeth.  Hug kitties.  Watch things.  Read things.  Call people.
1-3 am – Go to bed.


i fell in love with the burden

Something about this song spoke to me this morning, so I’m sharing.


I’ve found myself in the land of random thoughts this weekend.

My roommate is visiting from San Francisco, as he does every few weeks.  These weekends tend to be full of activities.  He’s here an extra day to drive me to a bloodwork appointment–because I can’t drive after losing that much blood (vampires).  We usually pack and clean, all weekend.  This weekend, I decided I wanted to minimize all of that.  There was lots of that yesterday morning, but I did my best to get it out of the way early–so I could breathe and rest.  It was a decidedly nice Saturday.  Nice to know all the have-to-get-done crap was over with.  Nice to spend two whole hours in a tub of beautiful scented water.  Nice to stay in pajamas (when did they get so big?!) all day long.

This summer has been full of so much doing.  So much processing and change.  So much learning and growing. Weekends have been full of have-tos and shoulds rather than want-tos.

It’s been good for me, in a way, to find more of my independent self.  To remember quieter, solitary me.  To get closer to my heart and my aspirations rather than the routine that comes with living with someone–even when that someone isn’t the someone.  I’ve found more of myself, here, in this quarter of a year.  I’ve also spent time connecting–seeing if my lego fits with this lego or that.  Finding that sometimes it does–albeit awkwardly.  And sometimes, I find my pieces morph in deceiving ways, creating gaps where none really exist.

Lately, I’ve missed the weekends of years past.  Those of my mid-20s, when things were somehow less adult.  Where I would walk in the rain for hours and paint things with friends’ kiddos.  Where I’d hide behind trees to avoid exes.  Where I wrote for hours in the middle of the night.  Heartbreaking times, sure, but times when I felt most alive and here.

Adult is good in its own way.  There’s a pride I get from cleaning things just so.  From accomplishing big tasks and ridding myself of clutter.  From prepping good food and putting time in on the elliptical.  There’s an honest feeling I get from that–a feeling that tells me I’m doing okay.  That I don’t need anyone.  That I’m taking care of myself and loving myself in ways I couldn’t just a few months before.

But I miss my weekend adventures.  Even the ones that only go a few blocks down.  I miss smiling at strangers.  I miss talking too much and too loudly.

I miss people.

God.  I never thought I’d say that.


I’ve been nesting a lot lately.  Or, I should say, wanting to.  (Our apartment’s a mess of boxes and…crap).  I keep dreaming of our new place.  What the sofa will look like.  The art that will be on the walls.  All the weekend projects I have piling up in my head.  I keep dreaming of time spent on beaches, in giant forests, and places I’ve never been before.

It’s made me nostalgic for something I never have had.  Family.  A true one.  A functional one.  One that’s mine.  One I create.  Not one I inherited.  Not the burden of the one I have.

Last night, I thought about being a mother.  It feels closer to me.  Mostly, I think, because time is ticking away.

I have a plan.  Deadlines.  If, thens.  Ultimatums with myself.  At 37, I wonder how that plan will fit in with all the other plans.  Because if this plan goes there, I will start my art therapy practice with a baby in play–or soon to be in play.  I might be teaching too.  What then?  So many plans.  Can I do them all?  Will I want to?

I think so.  Yes.

I’m going to be a good mom.  Not a soccer mom.  My kids won’t be scheduled.  We will travel the world.  I’ve toyed with the idea of getting a little bus or trailer and traveling when I do my PhD.  They could come and play with me.  I could teach them about all kinds of things.  Creating our lives as we go.

God, it sounds like so much fun.

My kids are going to be awesome handfuls.  Just like Mama told me they’d be.  And somewhere, she will know that I’m a good mother–like her.

I feel so impatient.  I want it all, now.

But gotta find a husband.  And if not, a kid.  All such long journeys.  Do I have the patience?


But it will be okay.


Life is good this Sunday.  Too busy, but I had great coffee.

I smiled at my new neighbor’s kids.  They are 7 and 12. Blue hair.  Mine is currently cherry cola.

They were impressed.

Adult life isn’t so bad.

blog challenge: never forget

Alright, I’m back to tackling that blog challenge I mentioned a few days ago since–good news–Fogg is doing a lot better today.  Not out of the woods yet, but eating again and back to her cranky, loving self.

So, this blog entry is supposed to center around something someone told you about yourself that has always stuck with you.

I’ve actually heard it from a few people, in various ways, and it came up the other day with the love interest.

I was not having a great day, and he basically told me that one of the reasons he liked me was because–despite the considerable shit I’ve been through–at my core is a happy person.  I fight for my happiness.  I don’t just accept that life has to be hard.

It was actually sort of touching.  I’ve heard it from a few people who knew me well at the time, and over the years, you wonder if you’ve become jaded or hardened by life.  But it sort of confirmed something about myself that I’ve known for years–that I’m resilient and a diehard optimist.  I have my moments, mind you, when I can be the most negative person ever.  These moments really take a lot out of me and actually freak people out.  I need those moments, sometimes, though.  You can’t be brave and strong and whatever 24/7.  Sometimes, you have to wallow in that shitty feeling thing.  But I usually bounce back.  It may take me a long time to progress in directions I want, but I’m always on a mission.

Part of me hates this part of me, though.  The world labels us optimists as Pollyannas.  It’s a big part of being an INFP, and it can make us be discounted as naive or whatever.  It also seems to fuel some of the emo stuff we’re also known for.  I always see the best in people–what they’re capable of.  I see the opportunities in situations where others see nothing.  And it can be hard being surrounded by people who just don’t get that it’s even there.  I also tend to be disappointed by people when they aren’t capable of living out their potential.

I’ve really had to manage this part of my personality or else it can make it hard for me to trust people.  It also can make me isolate myself.  It’s hard to constantly believe in people who don’t believe in themselves–or me.

But it’s really touching to me when people see me for who I am.  I am a happy person.  Not a content person.  And my happy maybe isn’t other people’s happy.  But it means a lot to me to know people see it in me.  That the thing I fought so hard to keep was something that is apparently a notable trait.  I wish I could help people find it in themselves, too.


I’ve had my cat, Fogg, for about six years now.



She’s pretty much my feline soulmate.  I got her during a sad time in my life.  When I had just one other kitty–my beloved Cleo–who has since gone to be with my Mama in Heaven.

Fogg was the same age as Cleo, and the two of them were polar opposites.  Fogg was feisty and neurotic–a ball of energy and mischief.  But also the sweetest, most loving cat ever.  When I first met her, she stared me down–and who could refuse that face?

Her journey with Cleo was bumpy.  There was a few months where I wondered if I could keep them both–their fights were so horrific.  But eventually, we got to a truce.  And by the time Cleo passed several months ago, there was a genuine respect.  And when Cleo died, Fogg seemed to grieve.

She is our elder stateswoman.  The whiny enforcer.  The low-key, happy girl who loves to be near me.  Always.  My very best girl.

She’s been off for a few months now.  At first, I chalked it up to the sadness she had when my roommate left for San Francisco.  She gets attached to people pretty quickly.  She caught a cold from her ever sniffling brother right around then.  She is always so healthy and strong.  She fought it off, but there were behavioral problems.  Litterbox issues that never existed before.  She’s always been so clean.  We discovered it was an infection, so we gave her the antibiotics, and she got better.  But the antibiotics brought other problems.  Seemingly minor.  Only they’d come back again and again.  Vet appointments made and canceled because she was better.  I eventually changed their diet, and she was still oscillating.  But getting better–more energy and weight gained.  And then, this week, she took a sharp turn back down that path–only much worse than the normal jump back.  And today, worse still.  She seemed different and sad.  And stopped eating.  She hadn’t done that before.

So, the vet appointment is made for too many days away, and I am making her chicken and rice–hoping she’ll gobble it up and decide to sit next to me for the rest of my distracted workday.

I worry about my sweet friend.  I remember her beautiful sister and how quickly she disappeared.  And I really hope we have a lot more time left to play queen of the world at 3 am.

I know part of my worry is irrational.  She is not Cleo.  She is healthier.  It is not the same. But my PTSD brain panics and wants to swoop in to save her.

And I hate doing it alone.  It reminds me that, sometimes, it would be nice if there was someone around to hug me and tell me she’ll be okay.

blog challenge: 30 facts about me

I stumbled across this blog challenge the other day, and I decided it might be a good way to get back into writing on the daily.  I’m not much for rules these days, so I’m just going to pick one each day that doesn’t feel like work. :)

  1. I was named after my paternal grandmother.  My middle name is also my Mama’s middle name.  My initials spell out AIM.  (I used to hate my name so much).
  2. I have many scars. One on my right index finger from when I almost sliced it off.  A small scar on the right side of my nose. A scar at the base of my scalp.  One on my hip.  One on my big toe, right side.  One just above my belly button (the biggest one).  One underneath my breasts, mid-chest.  And two on the right side of my abdomen.  (My right side is pretty unlucky, eh?).
  3. I am moving to the Bay Area soon.  (As soon as my roommate can find a suitable apartment.  He’s been out there since the end of April).  It’ll likely be somewhere in the Peninsula.  I’m leaning toward Santa Clara and San Jose, but I’d love to live in the city or Berkeley someday.
  4. I don’t drink often, if at all these days (due to post-gall bladder loveliness).  However, I do enjoy a nice Pimm’s Cup or a gin & tonic.
  5. I’m very much into alternative medicine these days.  I regularly see a rolfer.  I am planning to start seeing an acupuncturist again once I move.  Chinese medicine and homeopathy is groovy.  I want to see an integrative doc, too.  I’m fascinated my Ayurveda.  But I also have a family doctor and see a few specialists.  I believe health is a team sport.
  6. I started a new job back in late April after working for the same company (mostly) for four years.  I love my company and my team.  I was asked to be a corporate blogger and diversity trainer today.  So, I’m pretty happy to use one of my degrees and share my passion for my work with others.
  7. I really want a dog.  An Australian Shepard, wolfhound, and a black lab.  Okay–so I want all the animals.  My three kitty loves would probably object–loudly.
  8. I’m pursuing a career in macro social work.  I’m going to go to art therapy school once I’m in the Bay Area.  From there, it’s on to a PhD in Social Work.  I basically want to be the Brene Brown of grief.  And a bunch of other things.
  9. I’m a tea fanatic.  I bought five boxes today.  It’s a problem.
  10. I am just barely far-sighted, but I own like seven pairs of glasses that I barely wear.  I only really need them when I’m on the computer or reading.
  11. I have an obsessively large music, movie, and e-book library.  The e-book thing surprises people who know me.  I still dig the real thing, but electronic versions of things allow me to get all the books.  They’re cheaper and easier to store.
  12. At the end of a long, hard day–every single day–I wash my face.  I’ve invested in these amazing washcloths and these fantastic skin products to make it so luxurious.  It helps me feel human and draw a line in the sand between business me and just Alma.
  13. I love to make things.  I have all these essential oils I’m going to make into lotions and chakra scents and etc etc.  I have fabric to refurbish furniture and make curtains.  I love creating.  I get it from my Daddy.
  14. My favorite herb is sage.  It must be fresh.
  15. I don’t eat breakfast that often.  I’ve tried so often, but I’m rarely hungry before 10–and sometimes it actually makes me feel ill.  I do love to cook big breakfasts on the weekends.  Especially breakfast tacos with homemade salsas.
  16. I’m notorious for taking photos of the butts of various forms of wildlife.
  17. When I die, Rodrigo y Gabriela will likely be playing.
  18. I’ve literally almost died 5-6 times in the last 5 years.  4 of those incidents were car related.  Each time, I somehow dodged that bullet.
  19. My favorite pie is this cherry pie from Colorado Cherry Company in Lyons.  I once drove all the way to Estes just to get one.  I don’t even like cherry pies.
  20. I cannot do even one chin-up, but I can do push-ups all day long.
  21. After two surgeries in two years, I am completely comfortable with my body.  I am also a lot less of a germaphobe.
  22. I hate to drive on two way highways that don’t have dividers, and I’m not a fan of multi-lane ones either (I’m looking at you I-25).
  23. Greek food makes me annoyingly happy.  I make all the noises when I eat it.
  24. I have about 10 gazillion photos that I need to go through and edit from the last 10 years or so.  It takes me about 20 minutes of editing per photo, so that’s going to be a long process!
  25. I love water.  Baths, rain, oceans, lakes.  You name it.
  26. I own two hula hoops.
  27. My hands, feet, and nose are always freezing cold–but I tend to be warm all the time.
  28. When I buy new shampoo scents, I immediately run home and wash my hair.
  29. I am a gourmet honey freak.  I will eat it with a spoon like it’s frosting.
  30. I’ve loved veggies and fruits ever since I was little.  I never had to be bribed to eat anything.  But, man, I hate beets.

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