Surviving a bankruptcy and losing my homes was not easy.
Even though I knew they were just “things” I was losing, it was still painful. But, I had a distraction through it all, which made it so much easier.
I met Judd in November, just before the holiday season, and he took me to one holiday party after another. He sold advertising for a local publishing company, and his job came with a lot of invitations.
We had a lot of fun, and I felt like Cinderella.
For Christmas he gave me a beautiful silver cuff bracelet that he had specially ordered for me. He said it was a Wonder Woman bracelet, because I reminded him of her.
My Wonder Woman bracelet
Have you noticed she stopped writing her story? I wonder what’s going on. I mean, she was all gung-ho sharing all the details of her life before. Over-sharing might even be a better way to put it.
So what’s going on now?
Honestly, I don’t even know what gives her the right to share this stuff anyway. First of all, who really cares? And secondly, why in the world would she want to put herself out there for the entire world to see?
Kind of silly, if you ask me.
The Colquhoun Clan’s motto and crest is one that, at first sight, I thought was kind of … well, weird. Si Je Puis, translates to “If I can”. That sounds pretty vague to me. And at the center of the crest there is a red stag, with its tongue hanging out…also kind of strange.
Knowing rain and cold weather was ahead of us later in the week, we headed out early Monday morning in search of Clan Colquhoun on the banks of Loch Lomond.
My sister spent several years researching our ancestry and found our Great, Great Grandmother Mary Colhoun’s family was from the Colquhoun Clan.
Wanting to get a sense of family history, I did a little research and found the Clan was located in the town of Luss on Loch Lomond.
On our way there, we stopped at a few castles that the Clan had governed over. The first was Dunglass, which we could just barely see from a stop along the road. The castle was not open for public viewing, so we marched ourselves on to Dumbarton Castle.
That place was amazing!
John’s family in Northern Ireland loves it when he comes home. They don’t say he’s come to visit, to them John is home.
After our hike up to see Cloughmore Stone, and a bit of breakfast, we packed up and headed to Poyntzpass in County Armagh. I’ve been there once before, for John’s Uncle’s funeral service, and to lay some flowers on a grave.
When John and I were married, his sister told me of an Irish tradition of the bride placing her bouquet on the grave of a relative instead of throwing it to the single ladies.
Knowing we were going to Ireland a few months after our wedding, I saved part of my bouquet to lay upon John’s Father’s headstone in Poyntzpass. So we headed back to the little church and graveyard to pay our respects. Continue reading
How do you see yourself? Does it match what you see in the mirror or in photos?
Growing up in the ‘60s and ‘70s on the heels of the Twiggy movement, thin defined beauty. Growing into my body as a teenager and coming of age, I was super thin. And that image has stayed with me, even when the person staring back at me in the mirror has changed. Continue reading
Have you ever been in a tornado? I have. It is one of the most amazing, scary and even thrilling natural events I have experienced. The sound of a tornado is something that you will never forget.
Growing up in a small Mid-Western town, we would have tornado drills at school. And most of us had cellars, so we all knew where to go if there was threat.
You get no warning with an earthquake.
I have been super busy with family needs these last five days, and haven’t found the time to write. I got back home last night and this morning I’m working on catching up with a few things.
It’s interesting how life is filled up with busy moments and I get caught up in it all. Then something happens to remind me that it’s all just little stuff. It’s okay that I haven’t written here in a few days. And it’s even okay if I’m behind on a few reports due.
It is also okay that I take some “me time” to regroup and replenish.
It’s not all here!
If you haven’t already, please follow me on my Facebook page. I share different posts there and each Friday do a fun mind teaser. Continue reading
I will never forget the realtor that worked with my banks to ‘short sale’ my homes. She was a bitch.
Yep, I went there.
She treated me with such disrespect and down right contempt. I was already mortified and embarrassed, but this woman was actually enjoying kicking me while I was down.
And speaking of down, have you ever experienced bankruptcy? It is a life altering decision to make in the first place, but oh once the process starts you’re put into the “undesirable” category.
Which is where you will stay for at least 10 years.
Have you ever cleaned houses for a living? It’s hard work. Really hard. But if you’re good, like I was, it pays pretty decent money. And now.
Only it doesn’t pay enough.
I couldn’t keep my head above water as an independent realtor any longer, so I moved my license from ReMax over to a smaller company that only took a portion of any commission I made.
It was a defeat, but one I had to accept.
2007 was just an all around crappy year for me. Being a realtor who owned two homes during the housing crisis was a double whammy and just about sent me off the deep end.
Not only was I losing my homes, but my income had plummeted. And if you don’t know how it works for a realtor, let me explain.
We pay for everything.
Yesterday I posted my Wednesday “Let’s do this together” video. Each week I like to share some little tidbit about exercise or diet that I have gleaned from my week. And yesterday’s post was about trying to get enough exercise while on the road.
I left you hanging, I know. I’ve actually tried continuing my story several times now. But I keep getting stuck.
I hated that time in my life and honestly it’s hard to look back now, knowing what happens. But the other morning, when I was thinking about it all, I remembered two important things
I got through it and survived. And, I learned an amazing life lesson
So, I’ve decided to just write and go from there. I left off telling you I was neck-deep in bills and my income had plummeted. I had two mortgage payments and was desperately trying to save my homes.
As I sat at my big dining room table, looking at all of the bills that were covering its surface and I made the decision to let my dream house go. The mortgage was twice as much as my old ‘70’s house, so the smart thing to do was to move back into it and try to stop the bleeding. Continue reading
What do you do when you have too much on your plate?
Take something off of it, right? I’ve got a busy day and had to prioritize and exercise won out over a new blog post.
Speaking of plate, I thought I’d share this little post I wrote about an evening of “cheating” with some Italian. I love Italian food. It’s amazing and delicious and satisfying to all my senses. And since I’m still working on losing a few more pounds before our spring vacation, I’m changing up the menu just a bit.
I’m making turkey Bolognese (heating up would be more accurate) and having it with zoodles and broccoli, instead of pasta and garlic bread … #notthesame Continue reading
There is a revolution happening ladies! It’s amazing and will set us all free! All we have to do is ditch the dye!
Okay, so revolution is a bit strong. And I’m not sure if “free” is the right word either.
But have you noticed the Gray Hair Movement going on? It’s all around us prompting us to free ourselves of dye and join the group. And you know what? If I had beautiful silver locks I would join right in.
But I don’t. My hair is a boring brown (aka dishwater blonde) with a few dull gray hairs. So, I dye it, because that makes me feel good. Continue reading
I purchased my dream house in May 2006, and I couldn’t believe how lucky I was. Every thing about this place spoke to my soul. I truly felt as if I was “home” for the first time in a very long time.
The back yard was quiet and beautiful and I spent most of my summer days out in that yard or on the deck. Inside my house was decorated exactly how I wanted it. Everything was perfect.
I love this picture of my boys laughing and joking in my back yard
many days spent on that little deck
Everything was perfect
Except for the two house payments I had.
I had this stone topped antique table that weighed about 300 pounds that I absolutely loved. I bought it sight unseen from an antique dealer in Eastern Oregon. A friend of mine knew I was looking for an island table for my kitchen at my farm, and when she saw it, she called me right away.
The owner of the shop told me it was an old print set table for a local paper, back in the day. There was a twin to the table, but no others like it, and to this day I don’t know why I didn’t buy both of them.
Of course everyone who has helped me move that table from house to house could tell you why. There was a two-inch solid marble stone that slid into the three-sided wooden top.
And it weighed a ton!
Well, not really a ton, but you get my meaning. It took at least two strong men to move just the top of that table, and they were usually cursing me through the entire move.
But that thing had so much character. I thought it was black when I first got it home, but on closer inspection, realized it was just covered in ink. I used oven cleaner to get the stone clean, and started scrubbing the old wood.
Layer after layer of dark sticky ink came off to reveal a lovely dark walnut color. After several layers of ink were wiped away from the top, a beautiful old pitted stone presented itself.
It was a work of art.
2006 was shaping up to be a good year for me. I met “Tom” in May and by the end of that month I had another wonderful surprise.
My real estate business was going strong and I was making great money. Everything but the kitchen and exterior of my ‘70’s house had been remodeled, and I was feeling confident and accomplished.
I was having fun dating Tom and, because of our polar opposite views on religion, we were having wonderful conversations that would go on for hours and hours. It was stimulating and as someone who is a bit of a debater, I loved every minute of it.
Tom was a charming gentleman who loved a good glass of wine and a lively discussion.
I started this blog just over seven months ago. Like most things I start, I had no clear direction or mission in mind. I just knew I needed to start writing, immediately.
And for some reason, I felt it was essential to just be me. It’s actually easier to write how we think we are supposed to write, and say the things we are supposed to say. It’s harder to just write from the heart.
At least it is for me.
As I go about my day, no matter what I am doing, there is this voice inside my head that is always questioning whether I’m doing the “right” thing. Does that ever happen to you?
Along side that voice is another one judging me.