Dream a Little Dream

I am wrestling with myself on something in the hobby part of my life.  I am a weekend medievalist and have been for a couple of decades now.  I have been active in the various shires that I have lived in, which have been three.  I have held several offices for several years at a time over the course of these 20+ years.  I am also pretty artsy fartsy.  I try to make mine and my family’s garb as accurate as possible shy of sewing it entirely by hand (fuck that!). I am an avid embroiderer as well and am budding at knitting of late (I may have a fetish for knitting socks).  I have made many gifts for many friends and royals and have made my fair share of Queen’s favors over the years. I wouldn’t say I’m a slacker.

A few years into being in this group, I started having a desire to become a laurel, someday.  So, I began trying to make more accurate items of artwork, be it embroidered, book binding, clothing, accessories, illumination & scribal work, etc. I sought a teacher to guide me in my studies.  Over the course of the years, I have been apprenticed to a couple of laurels, but the relationships ended for one reason or another.  Currently, I am in an odd ball sort of dual peerage relationship with both a pelican and a laurel, for several years now.   For those that do not know, a Pelican is for excellence service and a Laurel is for excellence in the arts and sciences. They teamed up wanting to work with me but not wanting to make me choose between the two of them. Since the two of them are long time friends, they make it work.

As I have been working towards it over the years, I wonder exactly why do I want it?  I hear from friends, that are peers, of the headaches that come with the title.  The discussion groups that can get very negative on people who are being nominated for that particular accolade.  I hear how the bar is being raised higher and higher it’s getting harder and harder to be accepted or have your work evaluated as the level to be considered for the peerage.  What is acceptable service and what is now. The artwork one may do and love is one that has already been researched greatly by someone else who has been elevated so it makes it harder for them.  I have heard of some that have reached the point of massive discouragement and have given up their aspirations for that peerage they had worked towards.  I use to enter competitions for my art and on a couple of occasions my work was given some very harsh unconstructive criticism.  It has deterred me from entering any such further competitions or contests.  I will display my work,  but have no desire to enter competitions any longer for fear of the vitral words that some will give as “criticism”. Now, I can take CONSTRUCTIVE criticism, but as I’ve said in previous entries, I can wear my heart on my sleeve and if you are down right mean in your comments on my entry, it will hurt. Why would i want to be around you if you are like that?  So I don’t put my work out there in competition. I post it on another blog where I solely showcase my work.  Its public. Anyone can view it. I have made many a gift for friends, family, royalty, donation gift baskets, etc. 17 years worth of art has gone out. And that whole saying “Cobbler’s children have no shoes” is so me. I have nothing embroidered or embellished that I wear myself because I tend to put all my time into things for others.  I keep saying I’ll make myself something but then I envision this grand present for someone else and off I go making them something.

So I ask myself again why I want to earn a peerage? It won’t help me in the mundane world. It wont give me a raise where I work. Won’t help me get a better home. I suppose I want it because it means my work has reached that level that is more than just intermediate.  I suppose I want to be accepted and viewed as having artwork that is of an expert level or that I have achieved an excellent level of service for the kingdom and that they want to include me in their ranks.  Seems silly, but yes, i do want it. To feel welcomed and wanted.  Whether it will actually happen, I am unsure and have my doubts.  There is the first point of being nominated by someone who thinks you are worthy. I have peers that feel that others should nominate their students and not them…but they will support and cheerlead for them 100% when someone does.

Someone once told me if you don’t expect anything you won’t be disappointed.  It’s a shitty attitude to take, I know but maybe it will keep my heart a little bit safer from the hurt of disappointment.

I can dream. It’s cheap.

Here Comes the Sun…do, do, do, do

It’s an odd kinda morning. I woke after 5 to find my house empty…of people, not things. (No, I wasn’t robbed.)  My guy had to be to work by 5 am for once to deliver furniture to Philadelphia. His plan is *fingers crossed* that he’ll be home by 3:30 from his long day.  I know his boss, because I worked there as well over a year ago and nothing ever goes as planned with that scheister of a man.  I also know that plans never go as they are so hoped to.  My theory is that I’ll see him sometime about 8pm tonight. Second night in a row of this during our kid free week together.  He seriously needs to find a new employer.

It’s not just my guy being gone that makes the house so deathly silent.  This week is Spring Break for my kids. While yes I trust them to be home by themselves, I did not want them to be bored to tears for a week sitting home alone all day staring at their tablets or playing on the Wii. So, I rang up the folks and off they went to Camp Grandma for the week. They will be well enetertained, fed and spoiled by my parents and my sister. They are already talking about an indoor water park on Friday.  To say the least I am jealous.  (I am totally a fish out of water)

I am use to waking up to the alarm at 6am. Then hitting the snooze button till about 6:20 and then grabbing a joint shower with my guy. Then its in to roust the children from their slumber and get their day started. Its always a bit of a struggle with my oldest (who has autism), he dawdles so much getting ready, and his bus comes at like 7:05.  He has to check the clocks to make sure they are synced. He has to make his bed, make sure his stuff animals are all in a row. Make sure he has his keys.  He fixes the wooden stools at the breakfast bar so they are all even when everyone is done eating. Oh..and he has to hear his clock chime 7 before he goes out.  I adore my son…but the OCD gets a bit frustrating.  My youngest will start talking incesantly about World of Warcraft (which my guy and I both play and my youngest got into because of that).  My youngest is a bit of a chatterbox..a trait he gets from his father. Go figure..when he was a baby, we had concerns there was something wrong because he wouldn’t talk.  Second sibling syndrome they called it.  Well, I have no concerns now. In fact…I long for some of that silence sometimes.  I swear the oxygen level in a room drops once he starts talking sometimes, LOL!  But i adore both my sons dearly and miss them horribly when they are not here.  And have you ever noticed that: you just can’t wait for kid free time and when you finally get it you are missing them so terribly like…five minutes after they are gone. What the ever living fuck!? Holy emotional roller coaster Batman!

So Im sitting here in a silent house with just the chime clock ticking away (shit i have to pull the weights before I leave for work), and I am longing for my children and my guy.  I didn’t get my half hour chat/cuddle time this morning with him. Or breakfast made for me while I am putting on make up (yes he spoils me so much…something I still have not gotten use to). Sitting next to my youngest stealing pieces of his pop tart when he isnt looking. Yelling at the oldest to pack his snacks and take his meds. Talking about ordinary every day things with my guy while we sip coffee. “What should we make for dinner tonight?”  “Are we getting chinese or BK for SCA fight practice night this week?” “Holy crap Joe is in douche-bag mode this week because of a shipment of furniture coming in”.  Yadda, yadda, yadda.  I miss it.

The sky is a greyish periwinkle color right now as the sun slowly rises behind an overcast sky. Still no leaves on the tress (hell there was a new dusting of snow on the ground yesterday morning, much to my chagrin) and the grass is that yellow brown color.  I am longing for Spring, that chartruese color green of new blooming leaves and birds singing.  Winter is hanging on a bit too damn long in my opinion this year.  The only sounds I am hearing now is my chime clock ringing once for 6:30, the kitchen clock ticking away, the fans to my computer running and the furnace pushing heated air through the ducts.

Its too damn quiet.  I miss my menfolk.

Food for Thought

So, I went to a nutritionist today.  You know I must be at my wits end if I am going this level.  A lovely lady who, thankfully, didn’t ask me to step on the scale right off the bat.  She asked me a smattering of questions about my health, age, activity, medical condition, etc.  I told her all the changes I have made in my eating over the last year –

  • Cut out all artificial sweeteners and use only organic cane sugar in my coffee or when cooking/baking
  • Gave up all sodas and anything with high fructose corn syrup
  • Dropped to serious low carb eating meaning I almost never eat pasta, rice, bread (well I have bread on occasion but, still reduced)
  • When I get a sandwich I get low carb wrappers
  • I don’t snack between meals
  • Aside from an occasional chocolate chip cookie or brownie (my two sweet weaknesses) I don’t eat a lot of sugary stuff. I mean cake more often than not goes stale or moldy in my house, ice cream gets freezer burned and candy gets stale or turns white from the sugar pulling out of the chocolate.

I told her over the last month (except the last week since Im recouping from bronchitis and an ear infection) that I had been working out 3 times a week doing cardio and weight training for 30 minutes a day, alternating.  At work I walk with two other women on our breaks and i wear a fitbit and it shows i get at least 8K steps in a day if not more.

She asked about my past and when i started gaining weight. She asked about my injuries and when they occured.  I went through the knee injury in high school. The back in jury 18 years ago. Birthing two children and the weight gain that came after they were born. The depression i suffered during my marriage that went bad and I was unhappy in. She asked about my stress levels.

It was a slow process. Over the course of 20 years, I told her and filled her in on everything.  So after all this, she says she has a hunch. She wants me to write all i eat down for the next week and whatever I am thinking while Im eating. She drew me a diagram of what my plate should look like for protein/starch/vegetable ratio, very much looking like a clock.  From 12-8 should be vegetables, 8-10 protein and 10-12 starch. She’d like me to do this twice a day if possible. Oh and chose full fat dressings over honey mustard, which is my favorite. Sugar, with my PCOS, will turn it right to fat and deposit it on my torso.

I stopped at my guys job on the way home and told him what she said, how I bawled my eyes out at the end when I told her i hated myself but would not go the surgical route my family members have taken. He said we would do this together. “I love a big salad at dinner, we can just do that more often”.

God I love this man. So damn much.

So, Im going to give this a shot. Remembering to write down every morsel i eat is going to be a fat pain in the ass but if I want to be thinner I have to do the work.  I want to earn this.  His parents are coming in 7 weeks…I want to be a bit thinner by the time they visit.

Fingers crossed.

Recovering

Man, Zithromax is one powerful drug. I am on day three and feeling infinitely better.  Yesterday, however, not so much. The day started out well after dose number 2, probably because I manged to get six hours of sleep in a row (which is the longest stint of sleep I had in the last week) but by 11 o’clock, I felt like someone sucked the life out of me.  You ever feel so tired and weak you could barely lift your arms? Yea I was there.  So much so I asked my guy if he could take the boys to cub scouts that night because I had planned on going home and getting into bed.  He said yes, but I could hear the doubt in his voice. He knows me…i rarely let an illness keep me down.  When I got home yesterday, I put on pj bottoms and crawled into bed and put on back episodes of “Once Upon a Time”.  I slept through most of the first one. The kids inquired as to how I felt and they understood and left me alone. When my guy got home, he was shocked to see me under the covers.  He came over to check on me and gave me a kiss.  He was an angel last night. He picked up my friend and fellow den leader and her son (her car is in the shop) and brought them to the house. He made hot dogs all around for them (including me) and then took everyone in my van to the meeting. The house was blissfully quiet for an hour. It was just lovely. Then when they came home he got them on their bedtime routine and made sure I was ok. I was feeling better towards bedtime but I stayed in bed. I feel asleep at about 10 and woke 15 minutes before the alarm. Though still a little tired, I feel so much better today.  Should be right as rain by this weekend.

I have the best boyfriend in the world! Yes I’m gushing like a school girl! Hush you!

The Road Goes Both Ways Ya Know

Hate is such a strong word. I rarely use it unless I’m referencing things like “I hate this bloody cold” or “oh man I HATE Cauliflower”.  I so rarely use it in referencing other human beings, but this morning on my drive into work, I am finding myself wanting to use that word in reference to my family.  Not the one living in my home with me, but the ones that are in my hometown.  I love them, but at the same time, I am starting to seriously hate them. Truly a love/hate relationship.  I suppose a little bit of background into it might help.

My parents never liked my ex husband, especially my Dad. (I should have taken this as a true clue and woken up back then but I didn’t and then of course, I wouldn’t have my two lovely children sooo….moving on.) When he and I finally split and I moved back in with my parents, I got plenty “I told you so”‘s from my Dad.  To the point that even my mother told him it was enough.  My kids and I lived with my parents for two years while I worked and saved up money to be able to move out on my own.  It wasnt an easy two years. Living with my Mother is….challenging.  Mom and Dad argue a lot. She is the type of woman who wants to see the world, have all the things, all the clothes, jet set and vacation in all the places that people with wealth would (on two teachers salaries). Dad was quite happy to stay home, tend the garden, go to lunch on Tuesdays and have open-faced turkey sandwiches at his favorite greasy spoon. He doesn’t like to leave his little hometown bubble. They have gone on vacations, but it was either to a cabin on a lake in the North when we were kids or they did do a couple of cruises, begrudgingly to him.  Now, that all being said, I am a good mix of my parents. I have the travel bug that my Mom does, but the sense of humor, laid back and easy-going nature of my Dad. Apparently, also his sense of humor, much to my mother’s disappointment.  So…as you can deduce, my Mom and I butt heads. A lot. Living with them for two years with my children was very trying.  I moved out on my own in the summer of 2012 as I promised my Mom after a HIDEOUS, lots of four letter swearing argument the previous November with her over…now get this….a picture on Facebook.  It’s really too long and ridiculous a tale to retell but after being accused of lying and then me proving her wrong, I decided to take my 40th birthday present to myself money (a trip to Italy) and I used it to move out. (Somehow I keep sacrificing my vacations..WTF!?) I moved 3.5 hours away from them up to where I have friends.  Some might call this stupid because, why would I leave the support system of my family?  Well, when I was married, I lived only 1.5 hours away from them and in the 15 years I lived there, they came up to see me perhaps a dozen times. IN 15 YEARS!!! We always did the traveling down to see them.  The ones with the least income…the most travel expenses, etc.  Well, as you can imagine, they have not been up more than three times in the last three years to see me where I currently live. The first time they did come up, they scoffed at where I lived (a cute quiet small town where I rent a mobile home in a well manicured community). She did nothing but complain about my poor choice of dwellings to rent and that I could have done so much better.

Last year, somehow the topic of going to Disney World came up. Doing it as a family trip (my guy is now in the picture at this point). We do the planning, save our tax return, etc.  Start to get it set up when my sister decides they can’t/won’t do it for XYZ reasons. Dad wont go because of his back (which he has since had surgery on and is better) so the entire trip is scrapped.  So, this morning, Mom drops the bomb on me that she and Dad and my sister and her family are going to Disney in October.  **blink..blink**  There was no invite for us spoken in this conversation.  She started talking about how they were unsure if they were flying or driving yet.  At this point, I feel the pulse in my temple and my heart rate kicking up. Oh yea..blood begining to hit boiling point.  So…they’ll drive to Florida with my sister, vacation with her and her family…but they can’t drive up to see us? And after the Disney trip we planned last year that everyone backed out of, they didn’t think to ask if we wanted to go along?!  My guy, who never gets angry…is one of the most laid back guys you have ever met and has the biggest “give the benefit of the doubt” mentality…is pissed off. So much so, he wants to cut our Easter visit short and not go at all.

I was proud of myself. I didn’t start to spew vile things at my Mother over the phone while I was driving into work after she dropped this news in my lap like a week old bad fish. I just kept quiet literally biting my lip and silently shaking my head. I cut the conversation short, lying that I was at work and had to go.  It was then that I really started to think I hate them at that point.   It’s not just this instance, its years and years and years of stuff compiling. Mom always harping on my sister and I about our weight. Hating how we dressed. Questioning skills on parenting, criticism on job choices, etc.  And again I may be sounding like a teenager ranting but I, who was the model child, never drank or stole shit, and did my best at school and was in band and choir and orchestra and had after school sports and never blew curfew or swore at my parents or stole liquor from their cabinet and always tried to set a good example for my younger sister (even when she did things or started cat fights..I held back), even after all that I feel like I am the one that is treated like a second class citizen.  My sister did all the bad things a teenager does….many I listed above.  She is the one they do everything for..treat like gold.  Yes..i am definitely sounding like a stupid emo ranting teenager. I suppose it is still a sore spot inside of me. I suppose if I had stayed down in my hometown where its going downhill it would have been ok. I would have been treated differently. I dont know.

I do know right now that…..well honestly I don’t quite know how to put into words what Im feeling.  We don’t have the money to do Disney this year. Well, we have it but we are saving to move into our own home. We want to buy or at least rent something different so I dont want to blow a downpayment. So, no we don’t have the money.  I’m infuriated. I’m pissed the fuck off. I’m incensed. And to some degree, I hate.   I think about all that we do to keep family together. We are the ones that drive 3.5 hours each way to see family. Spend holidays with them…birthdays, etc.  The road does go both ways you know.

What I do know right now is that Wyoming is looking better and better every day. And 3.5 hours drive time doesn’t seem quite far enough. Also..there will be less traveling to see said family from now on.

Fuck em.

Z-Pack TO THE RESCUE!!!

Well, I bit the bullet this morning and left work at near 1 to go to the doctor. After a quick once over, it was determined I have an ear infection and the start of bronchitis. I was promptly prescribed that nifty Z pack of antibiotics, a new inhaler and some medication to *cough..ahem* combat the female problem that sometimes arises with antibiotics.  Ah well. Here is hoping I am feeling better by tomorrow. One pill a day for the coming four days now. I can remember to do that at least. Must remember to take it with food. I took the double dose today with lunch and it gave me a couple of stomach cramps. I took it first before eating. Perhaps I should take it afterwards. Ah well. Ill eat light this week.

Hit Sam’s club. Got water, some ground beef and chicken, avacados and more ibuprofen. Also had the slow leak tire checked out and they found that the tire has a small hole in it that is not due to a nail or anything so they are going to replace it for free. HOWEVER….it has to be ordered as they are sold out. Of course. I have to ride around on that tire for a couple of days till it comes in. I also paid another 266.00 for two new front tires which were very sorely in need of replacing. Was a bit of an expensive day.

Oh and Im running the dishwasher and I find its leaking. Joy. Its a month old! Ill have my guy look at it when he gets home.

Tonight there shall be resting and embroidery and perhaps an early bed time. I refuse to let this stress me out. I have to heal.

Sharing is Caring….NOT!!!

I love my children, oh yes I do. I love that they are so (mostly, LOL) well mannered, sharing and considerate. That being said, they did not need to share their cold with me.  And it took a strong foothold in my chest over the weekend.  Having asthma makes chest colds worse and they tend to morph into things like bronchitis.  I have not had a full night of sleep in a week (partially due to my guy also having the cold before me and his coughing would wake me) and I think if I did, I wouldn’t be as bad as I am.  My wheezing sounds musical I was told this morning while lying in bed.  My inhaler and I have a very intimate relationship right now. Ugh.

But, it was a rare weekend as we were home and not traveling to a reenactment or to the family.  We had the boys Pinewood Derby race yesterday…their last one. Next year they step up to boys scouts and they do not do that race. It makes me sad. They have so much fun doing it between building the cars, decorating them and then adding lead weight to it for extra speed. They have never placed, but they always get a participation ribbon and have fun and that is what matters.

After the derby I treated myself to a 75 minute hot stone massage with essential oils. While I loved how it felt and the wonderful woman that worked on me managed to loosen the huge knots in my back, i think having a massage with a budding cold was not the best idea.  It drained me and made me feel worse the rest of the day. Either that or the cold just decided to really settle in that day. I spent the rest of the night on the couch embroidering on a costume shirt for a friend and watching episodes of Shark Tank with my guy.  I will go back to that massage studio though. It was soooo relaxing.

Sunday, we took the kids to the train show that happens once a year. They like it, but I find it to be a disappointment. I assumed that it would be lots more train tracks set up for the kids to enjoy. There are one or two really nice ones set up but the rest is mainly merchants selling train stuff in varying gauges. There was a lego display in the back and my youngest was more interested in that. The oldest was glued to the train tracks. I can see his love for trains maturing with him as he was asking for trees to be able to set up around the tracks. One of the reasons I want a basement in our next house is that we can set up a semi permanent train table for him and he can have a train set up that is stable and he can embellish himself. I will get that for him. The rest of the day was spent watching movies, resting and more embroidering on the same costume shirt.

One of the other things I did over the weekend was, after much debating, purchased the DDP Yoga program. ( https://ddpyoga.com/ ) There is very inspiring video on the front of an ex paratropper and how he overcame his injuries and lost weight and was able to walk again unassisted thanks to the yoga.  I saw this video several months ago. I have been weighing it in my head for months about getting it. Being as over weight as i am and the injuries I have, I thought it might be good for me. On friday at work on my break, I ordered it.  I also joined the facebook page. When I got all the online paperwork done and joined the community that goes with the program, the profile asks you to take your measurements now and then again at 3, 6, 9 months..and so on. So, I said what the hell. I got a quilters tape measure and went to town.  They are as follows:    Bust: 54″   Waist: 51:  Hips 60″  Thigh: 30″    These were the only four they asked you to take. They want you to take a couple of pics at the same intervals in different poses for comparisons as well. I havent done that yet just because, I didnt have someone home at the time to help me. I saw the measurements and nearly started crying. My hips and waist really bothered me the most. Then they asked me what my goal was inches wise, for those same areas. I honestly didn’t know how to respond to that or what would be appropriate.  Bust? Well hell…I honestly dont want to lose any bust size but would love to lose the weight off my back. So I wasnt sure what to put there…so I put goal of 45″ for my bust. 32″ for my waist, 36″ for my hips and 20″ for my thighs. My guy scoffed at my numbers saying he thought that was going to be too small. Honestly, I don’t know what the measurements should be for goal. Id be happy to be a size 12 again, ya know? Im 5’5 at 283 currently. I don’t have a small bone structure (confirmed by Dr years ago, Im a medium) so I shouldnt be below 150. I see my sister at 150 and I think she looks a little too thin, but she is about two inches taller than me as well.

But the whole measuring me is a wake up call. I so actively avoided all of it.  When I pass a mirror and i dare glance at my image in it, I always seem to be a little bit shocked at my size because I guess in my head I dont see or feel myself to be as big as I look. Then that shock turns into self loathing and then into depression and then sometimes i seek comfort food. Not often, but yea..sometimes.  I’ve been working out for a month now three times a week and have seen no drop in pounds on the scale. My guy tried to make me feel better. Said he’d put on weight and got on the scale to prove it only to show he’d lost another pound. I just looked at him and said, “Really!?”.  I love him for trying to make me feel better though. I adore that man.

So today entails surviving until 1-ish when I am leaving work early to hit the dr’s office and find out what ails me. Also to discuss my thyroid panel results and get a copy of it for the endocrinologist appointment next week.  After that a quick trim to Sam’s Club to see why the hell my tire has a slow leak and pick up a few things like avacados,  bottled water for the cooler and something else that is currently eluding my sieve of a brain.

Its amazing how much of a dumb fuck you become when a cold wracks your body. I so have no brain today.

Oh and on a side note…why the hell am I hungry already!? I had one egg, two breakfast sausage links and a small piece of toast for breakfast like..three hours ago. ARG!