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Below are the 20 most recent journal entries recorded in empresspatti's LiveJournal:

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Saturday, February 18th, 2017
6:36 pm
So I turned 62 today. No way to spin that young. I can collect social security.

I have this elaborate fantasy about (some mythical) birthday party. All my family & friends would be there. I’d come in on a liter supported by 6 (it used to be 4 but I’m really old and fat now) bare chested young men. There would be glitter cannons.

Um – what really happened. Tom has a miserable chest cold. We watched bad tv because its raining. Rain is a blessing because 1) drought in Georgia and 2) if it was nice, we’d have to finish painting the trim on the outside second story windows. How marriage enhancing it will be to take turns standing on a ladder with a bucket of paint? Probably not very.

Tomorrow I head to Maryland. I’m Monster sitting while my Daughter and Son in Law head to Paris for my girls 30th birthday. I’m so pleased that they are taking this trip. What could be more perfect than birthday dinner at the top of the Eiffel Tower?

Meanwhile, Monster led the Epic Nap Parade today.

His favorite napping place is behind the occasional table, near the heat vent. He snores.
Wednesday, January 25th, 2017
11:51 pm
I have always found my friend Miss Peg to be intelligent, delightful and so so so funny. She's currently living in Japan and routinely sends me GREAT emails.

From Miss Peg today:

Japan's most charming festival is one where old sewing needles are taken to the temple, stuck in a square of tofu while monks chant, and thanked for all the joy they brought and the service they performed over the past year. It is celebrated every February 8. Tofu is the final resting place for the needles because people think they deserve a soft place after all their hard work.

And just how delightful is THAT!

Be aware that I'll be at the temple with needles in hand on February 8. If any of you have any you want to thank, you might just want to do it at home, although I'll be more than happy to take along any you want to send me.

Miss Peg knows how to wield a needle. Check out this work in progress, totally, completely hand stitched.

I can't wait to visit Japan
Saturday, January 21st, 2017
10:08 am
We now have Shit for Brains as President. Feh/Ugh/Blech. It is my most sincere hope that he dies of a heart attach or stroke on the toilet while tweeting some venal nonsense. Well within the realm of possibility. <<Please note, Secret Service, that this is not a threat, just a most feverent desire.

MEANWHILE - its not just me.  Maryland Route 270W yesterday....

Friday, January 6th, 2017
2:22 pm
Under the Protection of the Cow Demon
Mourning is not a linear activity
How I can never again remind Mr. Wonderful of the time he gave me the same sweater I gave my Mother for Christmas.

All of the above apply.

This year Christmas was the bomb.com. My beloved Maryland will always feel like my truest home base. It’s the place where my Parents live on the same street as our daughter. My brother, his wife & the twins plus my son traveled from California. Tom and I slogged our way from Georgia. It’s been a long time since we were all together and it was WONDERFUL.

All those summers my brother sent the twins to stay with Grandparents and Aunt Patti have long established a close family with lots of good memories and traditions. For some people, Christmas Cards are things you send and receive in the mail. For us its cutthroat games of Hand & Foot, always boys against girls, complete with trash talk and revenge matches.

Food was consumed. Gifts were lavished. Laughter happened. It was nourishing and special.

THEN - Mr. Wonderful and my kids gave me a gift so meaningful and touching!

There is backstory, so bear with me.

My beloved cousin, Edward Readiker-Henderson, died this past June. I’ve linked to the LJ entry, so I won’t repeat myself much. I love him like a brother. I miss and mourn him. My life is diminished by his death.

He made me his literary executor. One of my first projects was to make sure one of my favorite books Under the Protection of the Cow Demon, was revised and available for purchase again. He’d found some typos and yanked it from distribution. Walkabout Publishing was great about putting out a corrected revision. They were really kind to me esp as I was stranger prone to crying.

It was a lot of fun giving the book as a gift this Christmas. I think its wonderful, funny and full of unexpected things.

Christmas morning Tom hands me a package. At first, squeezing the edges, I thought it was a photo album, which would have been great as I don’t have very many current pix of the kids. Opening the gift I found this:

For the record: A leather-bound custom version of the book. It has the Route of Seeing logo my cousin used for his website. Most important, it has an audio version read to me by Tom and our kids.

My husband, daughter and son took my labor of love; custom bound it and read it out loud to me. To finish it off, they included Edward’s Ted talk at the end of the book. It’s the most perfect thing ever.

Tom and I listened to it on the drive back to Georgia. It made me cry a little. I thought about how much I will always miss Ed. I thought about how much I am loved.

I decided that I had every reason to miss the extraordinarily happy time when we all lived in the same state and saw each other every day.

AND I will never ever again razz Tom about the marriage enhancing Christmas he gave me the same sweater I gave my Mom.

Tuesday, January 3rd, 2017
8:03 pm
That didn't start out like I planned.....
Whoo Boy

I’m not expecting anything good from 2017 – or the next 4 years for that matter – but I wasn’t expecting to expire on Day Two of the New Year.

What seemed to be a scratchy throat morphed into a truly unpleasant experience. I coughed, dripped, sneezed and alternated between fevers and chills. I also ate a huge bowl of bean soup which DID NOT AGREE WITH ME.

Tom patted me on the head and wished me a quick death. I missed Sherlock (thank goodness for On Demand) and proceeded to snore, sneeze, cough and backfire for 12 hours. WoW!

Glad that’s over.

BUT – I have promised myself that I would work out, so off to the gym I went. Day one was miserable – I barely managed half an hour on the elliptical. But today I went to water aerobics, had coffee with a girlfriend and made old fashioned tuna casserole for dinner. Minimal progress.

AND off to bed at 7:30p because I hate to waste a good misery. I’m going to snore through Big Bang reruns like a pro.
Sunday, January 1st, 2017
5:02 pm
Well, 2017 started out with a bang.

First off, the boys next door had fireworks, which of course, had Tom digging around our garage until he found his bag of explosives. That had all the little boys & big boys out setting off fireworks. It was a nice steady drizzle, so no one's house burnt down. Then our neighbor came back to the house to drink some scotch, dry off and talk. He left after an hour, so I was snoring by 11:30p. I have no optimism re 2017 & didn't see a reason to stay awake when my pillows were calling.

Tom woke up at 4am & noticed a sketchy person checking the trunk latches on cars on our street. He called the police (it should be noted that the phone is on my side of the bed), heard them come with sirens screeching and they knocked on the door twice to talk to Tom. Who was wearing his sleeping shorts, a t shirt, his disreputable yellow zip sweatshirt and new slippers. WHAT A FASHIONISTA!

All this went down before 5am and I slept through the entire event. Never heard a thing.

Apparently Mr. Wonderful and the policeman had coffee downstairs & chatted for a while. Tom says he didn't bother to shut the bedroom door, because NOTHING was making an impression on me.

BUT there is a good reason that I slept so heavily. I'm now enjoying a cough and scratchy throat. We took down the xmas tree and stored everything in the attic. I took a shower and made bean soup which is delicious. I haven't left the house. Tom just went for a walk & I saluted him with my mug of tea. Its 47 degrees and drizzling and I am choosing to act like an Atlantian. I'm huddled under a sweater acting like its awful, freezing weather. I'm wondering why I put on real clothes after my shower, I could have just put on clean pjs.

I am going to try and post more. I have a ton of catching up to do, but if I don't start now I might as well deactivate my journal. Maybe now is the time to say I don't care where the servers are. I'm here, period.

Hope everyone has a happy and healthy 2017. I'm not optimistic about the Trump administration, but that is an epic rant for many other days......
Wednesday, November 9th, 2016
8:22 am
Egads. I feel like I'm on fire.
I was so confident of a Clinton victory that I was asleep by 9:30p last night. I woke up at 1:00am and Mr. W wasn't in bed. I called out to him and he came up, sat down next to me and said "Trump is going to win."

My phone started to blow up. My Daughter was working the election desk at CNN and she was in tears, as was I. Family and friends texted or emailed - we are all so upset. How can Americans pick that human shit stain rather than a capable, experienced woman? AND - what this means to women going forward - NOTHING GOOD. This just proves that white men can do whatever they want and we can't stop them.

I'm beyond upset. I'm heartbroken. This is so much more painful than breaking my femur. While I'm at it - FUCK the FBI.
Sunday, June 19th, 2016
10:48 am
This LJ is my best place to write about things that are important to me. Here goes:

My Cousin-The-Travel-Writer, Ed Readiker-Henderson, died this week. He was only 53 and been ill with various horrible things for a long time. I’m heartsick and sad and also relieved that his suffering has ended.

I love him very much and I’m going to miss him like the fury. Our Mommas are sisters, so technically he was my cousin. In reality, he was my brother. We have been friends since – well, always. We’ve corresponded for most of our lives and had a couple of great trips together. He spent most of his life in Alaska, Arizona, Washington State, with a long interlude in Japan, Anytime he passed through the East Coast, I'd get a call. Could I come pick him up at the airport? Yes I could. He was an important and beloved member of my tribe. Now he is gone, no longer suffering. My life is diminished by his death.

Afar Magazine has written a beautiful tribute to him.

He gave an amazing Ted Talk

He was a contributing editor to National Geographic Traveler I loved this article.

He wrote several wonderful books. I worried that I don't know about all of them but here is a partial list:

Listening for Quiet – Kindle
A Short History of the Honey Bee
Under The Protection of the Cow Demon
Inside Passage
Adventures Along The Alaskan Highway (there were many editions of this book)
British Columbia
Japanese Pilgrimages

I’m going to head to Bellingham Washington to help close his house and make sure his bequests get to people he loved. Boy Howdie, (a phrase I learned from him) it will be tough emotional terrain.

Ed was a great gift to me all his life. Here we are on the "Mom Bails on Thanksgiving Caribbean Adventure"

Monday, June 6th, 2016
10:43 pm
For the first time in the history of the USA a woman has captured the Democratic Presidential nomination. WooT!!

Here's looking at you Hillary. Long may you reign. The world has changed for women forever.
Tuesday, April 19th, 2016
8:58 pm
When I'm not paralyzed by homesickness, I can recognize that Decatur Georgia has considerable charms. I’ve already mentioned that I live on Hot Dad Corner. I also live across the street from a noted local sommelier and wine critic. He gets tons o wine FedEx deliveries. Every so often, they turn on their party lights, fire up the firepit and break out the wine. Tom and I come every time we are invited.

How I found myself last Saturday night: 2:52am, forth glass of wine, (yes, I am a lightweight, except in ACTUAL weight) staggering across the street to snore loud enough to wake the dead (according to Mr. Wonderful). I spent Sunday feeling like my head was on backwards. Boy Howdy that was fun. Thank you Eleanor and Gill, for being AWESOME and funny neighbors.

Here is a picture of Current CasaEmpresspatti. Its cute and small.

Here I can garden in a deer free environment. My lavender, planted along the fence last summer, mostly came back. What didn’t survive the winter, or was stomped by neighborhood boys, was easily replaced by ACE hardware, bulya. It smells great.

This is called burying the lead BUT the other GREAT thing about Decatur? King of Pops popcicles. I had a craving this evening, mentioned it and before I even knew, Mr. W had zoomed out and procured a raspberry lime popcicle. Teh YUM!
Tuesday, April 12th, 2016
5:17 pm
Message from the Cooking Gods
In Maryland, Tuesday was my favorite day of the week.  For the past 11+ years, Tuesday mornings were Starbucks, girlfriends and a solid hour of laughter and catching up. Tuesdays in Decatur are usually alone quiet time.  Some days go better than others, but Tuesdays often suck.

This Tuesday was EPIC.  I had a hankering for tomato soup.  I dropped a pan of roasted tomatoes all over the kitchen floor.  I dropped a hot roasted tomato between my apron and shirt. I dropped a potholder into the soup. I cleaned up the kitchen floor, counter and cabinets.  Amazing how far a couple of tomatoes will fly.

THEN, I dropped a bowl of red lentil soup on my newly cleaned floor.  My kitchen floor got cleaned twice today.  YaY!

I get it.  The cooking gods don’t want me in the kitchen today.  Message received.  I’m one load of laundry away from erasing the whole incident.

EDITED TO ADD:  Just took off my shirt and had tomato in my bra.  YEESH.  I'm so done.
Monday, April 11th, 2016
8:31 pm
Hot Dad Corner
I am at a loss as to how to bring y’all up to date on my life. Lots have happened since I last chronicled the Adventures of Empresspatti.

So – I’m going to skip most everything that I’m not ready to talk about and tell you about Hot Dad Corner.

Two years ago, when Mr. W and I relocated from just outside of Washington DC to Atlanta Georgia. Almost immediately, I realized that the hubby and I had very different ideas about the Next Home.

I wanted a high rise in an urban setting. I envisioned sunny rooms, a big balcony and no more gutters, leaves, lawn etc to worry about. I wanted to be able to walk to the library, restaurants and grocery store.

Mr. W, on the other hand, was enraptured with the (for us) very low home prices. He was dreaming of a couple of acres, wrap around porch, quiet cul-de-sac. “Well,” I said to him, “maybe with your second trophy wife. I’m not sitting alone in a big house while you fight traffic to and from work. I’ll come visit you occasionally.”

It was a fairly crabby discussion, which took place after our first Sunday spent trudging from home to home with our realtor. Who I am sure was just thrilled to be out with the Bickersons.

Faced with revolt, Mr. W found our great little home online. 50 Gallons of paint, 3 renovated bathrooms and a lovely afternoon relocating bushes in the yard (boy howdy was that marriage enhancing), I’ve started to feel some of the contentment here that was the hallmark of my last home.

We are three blocks away from a good library, great restaurants, shops and an epic farmers market. Plus, I have a tiny yard with no deer to munch my plantings. I’m in year two of gardening, and things are looking good. All the bushes survived. Stuff blooms.

Here is my perch – a lovely spot in our bedroom. It looks out on the street, which is an extra bonus because I live on Hot Dad Corner. The view from my window is always outstanding.

Before I write any more, please know that I’m 61 years old and phat. If anyone of my lovely neighbors knew I called them Hot Dads, they’d run away from me at warp speed. BUT – YOU GUYS!!

Everyone on Hot Dad Corner has 3 kids. I was wondering if it was a requirement, but apparently not. Right next door is Francis the Harvard educated dentist. He and his lovely wife have (ferel) boys 6, 10 & 12. It’s like living next to the zoo and we love it. Caddy-corner is Todd. He is uber fit, jogs with his shirt off and walks his youngest girl to school every morning holding her hand. Down the street is Mike the doctor, married to a very funny woman who practices law. Past him is Jeffery & Susan, who are our age, good friends and fun to hang with. He’s a dead ringer for Robert Redford.

Lemme tell you, this is a fun place to stroll outside with a beer.  There is almost always someone pretty standing around with their kids, ready for silly conversation.

Best for last – there is an end of school year and a Halloween Party every year that are so much fun.  I’m living in VERY scenic community.
Sunday, April 3rd, 2016
8:51 pm
Looking over the horizon
slayesoftly wrote to me:

"Hope things are becoming less "meh" on the home front. The FB post in
which I quoted your view on "portable friends" popped up for some reason on
my news feed again, sparking a short conversation about how you were doing
and wondering if you were any happier than you had been at first. Hoping
the dramady that is the current state of Rep. politics is giving you
something to enjoy."
Thank you Sweetie! It’s so nice to be thought of. I wrote to you that I was doing better. FInally!  Being miserable sucks. I’ve mostly recovered from my broken femur.  The absence of pain has been a huge life improvement.

And YES!! The current GOP nominating contest is candy and giggles EVERY DAY. Trump changed his position on abortion 5 times in 3 days and had his campaign chief was indicted for battery. His overall negatives for women is -73%. I guess the GOP forgot that in the last election, they got their ass handed to them by women and people of color. This election is going to make Utah and Texas swing states. And Scalia is still dead, so the Supreme Court will never again be so ignorantly conservative.


It’s a long time till November and laughing so hard at the GOP can make my head hurt. I have to dole it out in daily increments lest I go into spasams…..WheW!

I’ve spent the last 3+weeks back in Maryland, mostly squatting with my Parents, which is awesome. I’ve also camped in my former home, babysitting Monster the Wonderbunny. Here’s a picture of the old man these days, contently munching on kale.

I’ve seen my extended family and old friends. This weekend Mr. W came north for a family reunion celebrating his Mom’s 85th birthday. His family is truly far flung, so it was great to have us all in the same place. It was the first time I’ve had a chance to visit my two adult nieces and I’m telling you: THEY ROCK. Someday these women will rule the world and the universe will be a much better place.

I head down south on Wednesday.  For the first time ever, in spite of knowing I'll snivel when I say goodbye to my girl, I'm going to be relieved to be back in my new hood.  This is real progress, so YaY!

I’ll start writing about my life in Decatur soon. I have a lot of catching up to do. Thanks again, LJ friends, for being there for me.
Tuesday, June 9th, 2015
11:25 pm
I am well aware that I haven't written a word since January. I am recovering from my broken femur. Harder to cope with is living so far from my family and friends. I'm often in miserable emotional terrain. No, I don't want to talk about it.

MEANWHILE - this is the most delicious thing in the history of ever. ENJOY

Watermelon Gazpacho

3 Cups of Seedless Watermelon whizzed through a blender
1 Cup Tomatoes diced
1 Cup chopped watermelon
1 Cup Cuke partially peeled and seeded
1 Cup Yellow Pepper
2 T diced fresh cilantro
3 sliced diced green onions OR 2 green onions/1 T shallot
2T Lime juice
1 T salt


Small seeded & minced jalapeno
OR dash of hot pepper OR Tabasco sauce
Tuesday, January 27th, 2015
10:59 pm
Someday I'll stop complaining....
As I have been whining about for months: I broke my right femur in October and had emergency surgery to insert a rod and several screws in my leg. December 23rd, I had my post surgical doctors appointment. The X-rays looked good. My surgeon is satisfied that I was forming the all-important ‘callous’ over my broken bone. I’m walking with a cane full time. I can drive. I can go up and down steps.

I feel better and have had a marked increase in strength and stamina. Most importantly, finally returned to my new home in Decatur, Georgia. The first time up those 12 steep steps was dicey, but I can do it several times a day now.

Mr. Wonderful drove up right before Christmas. Irony seemed to be the defining characteristic of the holidays. I lived in the guest room of my old home. Mr. W and I had our first Christmas without our kids in a house we no longer live in. It wasn’t awful, but it was so weird.

Mr. Wonderful has been so terrific. He dug up my beloved climbing hydrangea, drove it to our new home after Christmas and planted it Sunday. Putting down roots, he said.

I flew down on New Years Eve. It seemed important to start the New Year in my new home with my husband of 29++ years. Since we’ve moved, because of my accident, I’d spent more time in my former home than my new one.

Now might be the time to mention how much my Parents and Daughter worked to help me regain my health. They were so kind and loving. When I was in rehab, my Folks came every day to check on me and again every night. My Mom helped me wash up. Once I was settled in bed, my Dad would come in and tell me he loved me. It made me feel very safe and loved. My Girl made me laugh and listened to me angst. It must have been tedious, but it really helped me.

I recovered in the quiet of my former, now my Daughters home. It was familiar and weird at first, living in the guest room of my former home. I could navigate the few steps into the house, use the kitchen and manage the two steps into the family room, bathroom and my bedroom. I did my morning PT with Monster the Wonderbunny hopping on me or trying to chew the walker. Daytimes I spent at my Folks. We watched Big Bang reruns and had naptime every day. After dinner they would deliver me back to my Girl.

My Folks ferried me to PT, Doctor appointments. They fed me breakfast, lunch and dinner. The night I had a pain medicine meltdown, they made up the couch into a bed and checked on me every few hours. My Girl occasionally took me to a movie or out to lunch. It was fun.

As the weeks crawled past, I had plenty of time to think about how my life was going. Might as well just face facts: 2014 sucked green monkey dicks. The move away from family and friends made me miserable. I am happy that my Son found a great job California, living his dream. BUT. It made me heartsick. It is hard to love people so much and have them all so far away. Also – living apart from Mr. W while recovering was hard. I've really turned into a whiner. YEESH.

In my worst moments, I’ve wondered if I’ve had all the joy I’m entitled to in this life. I’m really disappointed in myself. I blithely assumed that I’d adapt to our new life and instead had multiple disasters and then managed to about cripple myself.

Thank GWAD, the return to Decatur has been better than the initial move. I’ve joined a rehab gym & can do water aerobics, stationary bike and when I get my nerve up, the elliptical. Workouts hurt and are exhausting, but I’m grateful that I’m recovering. I’m truly sick of endless doctor rounds, but I have to do it.

Mr. W loves his new job. He found a band to play with. He made friends with all the neighbors. We live in a great place and had moments of fun lately. Saturday night the whole hood celebrated a 40th (Babies, I tell you – 40 is a BABY) birthday by getting drunk enough that we all had to leave our cars and walk home. THAT IS HARD TO DO WITH A CANE – whoo boy.

Sometimes I find a piece of the old me. The other day I remembered that when I fell, my Dad was so upset that he accidently kicked me in the head while he was calling 911. It made me laugh. That’s a good sign, right?

I need to start posting more. It feels good to get stuff out and let it go. Hope all is well with everyone in LJ land.
Thursday, December 25th, 2014
1:53 pm
I owe a much longer post BUT:
Broken femur healing. I can walk with a cane and drive a car. I will return to my new life in Decatur Georgia New Years Eve. Christmas is weird - Mr. W & I are in our former home, while Daughter & Son are elsewhere. Its our first post kids Christmas.

To our eternal delight: THE FATAWA LIVES! This is what we came home to last night....


Santa Claus done up as Fidel Castro, complete with beard and cigar. The Santa Pigs (two wearing Darth Maul masks) along with "Bay of Pigs" & "Capitalist Pigs" signs. And "Havana Merry Christmas" letters strung up in front of the house.

So the tradition of our Neighbors, walking their dogs and being horrified, continues. PLUS - since we don't live here any more - the problem of storing those damn pigs for a year belongs to my Daughter and Son in Law. Win Win WIN!!

Merry Christmas!!

ps - 2014 sucked green monkey dicks. Here's wishing for a much better, less drama prone 2015!
Tuesday, November 11th, 2014
9:03 pm
Update on Me
Recovering from a broken femur is truly a pain in the ass. I rock the walker in anything that resembles a public or social situation. This week, in the quiet of my Daughter or Parents home, I’ve been using a cane. Its slow and painful.

In spite of missing Mr. W something horrible, I’m glad I’m here with family recovering. I have out patient PT twice a week and do my exercises every morning and evening. In between, I wear out like a toddler and usually sleep for a couple of hours every afternoon. I have the same schedule as a well tended two year old.

My Son and Hubby are coming to DC for Thanksgiving – the first time since May that our family will be in the same state. I can hardly wait to see my Boy and just hope I don’t snivel when I’m finally in the same room with Mr. W again.

So this is me – slowly healing. Learning patience one day at a time. Recovery is pretty damn boring.
Friday, October 17th, 2014
9:54 pm
Somewhere along the line my life seriously derailed, so buckle up people. I’m going to tell some stories.

When last I wrote, I was reeling from moving and having it rain inside my house the minute I finished unpacking. SO – it took about 5 weeks, but my house was dried, my walls, crown molding, baseboards were restored and painted. My hardwood floors were refinished – which was a bonus, the old dark stain sanded off and BEHOLD the lovely red oak below. I got a new floor in the laundry room, and put in a new washer & dryer. Last count I'd put 25 gallons of paint on the walls.

Then I unpacked all my stuff – again – and had company for the next 5 weeks. Then the Tuesday after Labor Day happened.

Mr. W and I were eating dinner when I saw a strange car in front of the across the street neighbors driveway. Then I noticed 4 teenage boys heading for the back yard. ‘That doesn’t look right,” I remarked to Mr. Wonderful. THEN I heard the sound of glass breaking and said “That definitely doesn’t sound right. Call 911.”

Tom picked up the phone and I waddled out the front door and into the street to get the tag # of the car.

I was hollering at the top of my considerable lungs in my best Newsroom Mom voice “HEY!!! WHAT THE FUCK DO YOU THINK YOU ARE DOING?” Cue boys running out of the house (they had smashed the glass back door) and heading for the car. It made me FURIOUS. “I’VE GOT YOUR LICENSE PLATE NUMBER AND WE’VE ALREADY CALLED THE COPS. YOU BETTER DROP THAT BACKPACK.” Honestly, you could have heard me in outer space. They zoomed off.

The police came, took our descriptions, asked me about 100 times what I did (Hollered) managed to find the abandoned car a few block away AND one of the criminal geniuses – holding the backpack. Also funny – the car was so recently stolen that when the police went to talk to the owner, he didn’t know his car was missing.

Our neighbors came out to find out what all the noise was about right when Tom got in the back of the police car to ID the perp. To my ETERNAL regret, I didn’t think to take a picture of him in the back of the police car, which would have been the best Christmas card ever. Anyway, between hearing me yelling at Max Volume and seeing Tom in the police car, it took a while to explain everything.

Then Tom returned from ID fun, we called the homeowners & they came home to a smashed back door, but the Police had already returned the backpack (homework and a flute), which was the only thing they took before I blasted their eardrums.

The next day I came home from the grocery store to a sign on my mailbox that said:

I was the hood badass. Hee. Just goes to show, I can yell at kids like nobody's bidness.

SO from there I went to Jekyll Island and had a great week with a couple of CNN BFF’s. We’ve all left the company, but we covered the news & traveled the world together at one point and it was a really fun few days.

I wizzed back to Decatur from Jekyll, had a great weekend with Mr. W – it was his birthday. I gave him a bike and we bought a gas grill. Then I headed to DC for a visit with family and friends. It was a great two weeks. I made the Book Club overnight – always a highlight of my year. I saw my family and was thrilled by the changes my beautiful Daughter made to the house. It was a great decision to sell to her and our SIL – they have worked hard to make it theirs and it’s both familiar and fresh and different and lovely as ever. Saying good-bye to her was hard, but I knew I’d see her again soon.

I just didn’t know how soon.

SO its Friday afternoon and I’m due to leave Saturday morning for Decatur. I’d have three weeks at home and was then going to travel with my cousin the National Geographic contributing editor to Venice, Istanbul and Cappadocia.

Instead, I tripped coming into my Parents house (where I was staying) and broke my right femur. It was a horrible nightmare of ER’s, emergency surgery, complete with a rod and three screws inserted in my thigh and Acute Care Rehab.

That was two weeks ago today.

I’m expected to make a full recovery – but it was a bad break. My post operative apt with the surgeon was Tuesday. He said it would be 10 weeks before I could reasonably be expected to have healed the bone, muscles and tendons enough to walk normally and probably 6 months to a year before it was really in the rear view.

This has been some year.
Sunday, July 13th, 2014
10:33 pm
The State of Me
Today I realized that I was at a tipping point. Either I post now or I Just Give Up.

2014 has been a year on roller skates. I just re-read my last post and it made me tired all over again. Now I wish my life was that easily explained.


SO – Mr. W and I are now living in Decatur Georgia. We landed in a tots fab hood. The neighbors have welcomed us with a graciousness that has been as surprising (to me at least. It would have never occurred to me to make a casserole for a new neighbor) as it has been wonderful.

Tom got here before me. There was a bottle of wine on the front stoop with a note saying WELCOME TO THE NEIGHBORHOOD. Later that day a group of 10-14 yr old boys knocked on the door to inspect him and told him where to get the good ice cream and pizza. He was thrilled. It made me realize all over again how much he misses his boy.

Update on my BOY: Our Son has successfully relocated to California and landed a GREAT JOB. That is a story in itself, so here goes. Mr. W & Son are on plane, heading for California. Couple next to them has a cranky toddler with an ear infection. As my Son told me later “Dad and I alternated playing Peek-A Boo for the entire trip.” At the luggage carousel after the flight, the couple thanked my boys for being so understanding. Mr. W said his standard thing – No problem, been there, they grow up fast, pointed to Son. This led to a conversation about the trip. The couple assumed vacation, but when Evan said “recent graduate, film major” the man handed him a business card and said, “Send me your reel.” Turns out he was the head of Diesel Films. Evan had his reel sent by the time Mr. W had the rental car. By the time they got to the hotel Evan had an interview date, which he nailed.

His first project – follow the link – was REAPER. This impressed the head of NIKE LA advertising enough to request him for the 6.6.14 Point Dume and 6.14.14 Downtown videos. That in turn led to being allowed to film and edit a spot on the USS Iowa. My boy has landed a great job, doing what he loves, with great resume enhancing work right out of the gate. We are so happy for him and so relieved that his transition to adulthood has been this positive. I also have to laugh – all those years of pounding my kids with financial literacy information – good education, good job, and assets not covering your ass with expensive jeans etc paid off in spades. Hurray for self-supporting adulthood. There were times when I despaired! Now I just miss him like the fury.

Update on my GIRL: Our Daughter and SIL bought our house and have happily been renovating, painting and settling in. Since we were also BFF’s, I miss her in an entirely different way. I can’t talk about it without winging, so suffice to say: I MISS MY FAMILY SO BAD IT CLAWS AT ME. I miss Monster the Wonderbunny and all he did was chew holes in my carpet - holes which now belong to my Daughter, so there is justice in the world.


We had a very labor-intensive month, painting the interior of the house, unpacking, figuring things out. Getting our drivers licenses and the cars tagged and titled took me two entire days, but it was a welcome relief from painting and unpacking boxes.

Finally, the last Friday in June, I was done. There were some curtains to hang in the bathroom and a few pictures to put up. The reupholstered couches were due on Monday. So I tossed a load of laundry in the washer and sat down.

Cue copious amounts of water spewing out from under the washer. I got it stopped right away, opened the linen closet and dumped the contents on the floor of the laundry room, but the water soaked through to the downstairs, causing damage to the walls and ceiling in the entrance, living room and downstairs hall.

Our insurer sent water abatement guys who ripped up my newly painted walls, ceilings, crown molding and floorboards. They set up 4 huge blowers and dehumidifiers, plus strange pulsing mats that sucked water out of hardwood floors. The inside of our house sounded like a jet engine for the better part of a week, which complimented the war zone ambience.

Because things weren’t stoopid enough – The DeKalb Water guys came to replace our water meter. I’m glad I know where the outside shut off valve is, but ironic timing. PLUS – two days later, I had a HUGE puddle in my front yard. I called the emergency number. They sent a team that dug a huge hole in my front yard, then tore up the sidewalk in front of my house and dug another huge hole. At one point that day, I had two teams of three guys tearing up the interior and exterior of my new house.

ALL I could do was giggle – as my Daughter said: That huge pile of dirt really makes your white fence POP.

I had to call my Parents & other friends to tell them they couldn’t make their scheduled visits. That was a singularly awful moment in my life and made me realize how much I had been counting on seeing them. BLERGH. This has been difficult emotional terrain.

Further mayhem commences this week. There will be more ripping down of walls and ceiling, then new drywall etc. We have to be out of the house while they refinish the floors, so I need to figure that out.

Who knows when I’ll ever do laundry at home again. The very thought gives me PTSD.

To top off the domestic drama, I sat on one of our potties last week and it rocked ever so slightly. I now have two brand new toilets, because of course.

I am so over water karma AND living in a trashed house. Hopefully August will be better……
Sunday, May 25th, 2014
8:42 pm
A Woman without a Nation
I owe everyone comment replies. Can't yet. I'm trying to stay out of the snivel zone.

In the last 10 days I have:

Thrown a dinner party
Hosted Mothers Day dinner
Moved my Son from college in Philly to home
Shipped Sons belongings to California
Travelled to Philly for Sons Cum Laude Graduation from Temple U
Thrown a Graduation/Birthday/Goodbye/Housewarming Party for a bazillion people in my back yard. Had a great time and drank too much.
Said goodbye to my Parents, dropped Son and Husband at Airport for Sons relocation to California for his Adult Life. It was too early in the morning for me to snivel.
Prepared my home for moving
Supervised 2 craters guys and three packer guys. I’m proud to announce that I managed to convince them to transport my post party leftover booze across state lines. Also – I’m pretty sure my chandlers from Venice and Istanbul will arrive intact. Or I’ll kill everyone.
Watched my old life drive away in a truck
Interrupted Daughter and Son-in-Laws first nookie in their new house. Whoops, sorry, but the garage and back door were hanging open.
Watched Daughter and Son-in-Law paint Master bedroom & Living Rome. I approve of everything they are doing, but can’t summon the energy to help
Had dinner with BFF’s and drank way too much
Joined my Iron Maiden Book Club for Happy Hour, where they presented me with a airline ticket home for the book club meeting in September. Also drank too much.
Woke up Rocking a Hangover for the third time in 6 days.
Went out for sushi with Miss Peg. Laughed so hard I got a headache
Was invited to dinner at Miss Peg, where the whole family and me laughed endlessly at shared experiences and memories over the last 25 years.
Had coffee with my post college roommate – I’d lived with her for 10 years after college, until I married Mr. W. Was there for the birth of her first son, and every other family event for 40 years since.

Then suddenly – there was a gigantic pause in the universe. My Husband is somewhere between California and Atlanta. My Daughter is bridesmaid at a wedding. My Parents are in Arizona (I’m squatting at their house). My Son, who turns 23 today, is in California.

For the first time ever a Milestone Event happened with no Family Celebration. I didn’t have everyone over for dinner and cake. I won’t be the home that does that. I’m sitting in a house not my own, alone with no responsibilities. It’s quiet.

I took myself out for a massage. Now I’m watching reruns of The Big Bang Theory. I’m someone else today and my world is gone. I thought it would be harder? Am I in shock?

The moving company just informed me that our belongings will arrive a week later than planned. Guess I’ll have plenty of time to paint with nothing to trip over. Let’s all contemplate me in a new state, home, life without a coffeemaker. I’m sure to make a good impression on the neighbors as I stagger to the local coffee place every morning for a week.
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