Welcome Ms Paige Lynn


 

One probable downside to my divorce is that I was so looking forward to having this little girlie as my only grand daughter even if it was to be “step” … one good reason to stay friends with the soon-to-be-ex is watching this new little family as they grow.

It was a privilege to be included with their family on Tuesday morning when she came into this world, surrounded by mommy and daddy, 3 sets of grandparents and an uncle … such love.

You’ll do just fine, little girlie, you’ll do just fine!

Namaste – I honor you, little one – thank you for letting me hug you and give you kisses.

Itty Bitty (aka Gramaree)

 

Hot Town … Summer In The City of Sacramento


Sacramento Summer is here .. with a vengeance.   It’s been pretty unseasonable so far – running just slightly above moderate temperatures, or below averages.  Not so much for the next two weeks!  It looks like out of the next 10 days, we’ll see 7 over 100 degrees. No rain in sight.

** All of the photos here are from various news sources.  I thank those anonymous sources for their bravery in providing the images. **

 I live about 2 miles from the 5th most critical reservoir in Northern/Central California.  It was in the news yesterday that by next year, it will be 96% empty if our drought continues.  This is what it looks like today:
What our reservoirs are  looking like ...
What our reservoirs are looking like …
With the heat consistently high day after day, the afternoon thunder storms in the mountains east of us develop quickly with intensity creating hundreds if not thousands of lightning strikes but little or no rain.  And with that, the barrage of lightning strikes in our beautiful forests have us at extremely high risk of wildfires.  They’ve already started – up and down the state.
Here are some vivid images of our current, on-going California wildfires ….
Beautiful Trees Gone
Beautiful Trees Gone
It’s not just the fires, it’s also the toll on our residents – the families that are forced to evacuate their homes, wondering if they have  homes to return to.  It’s about the firefighters who risk their lives.
Monster fires
Monster fires
My favorite corner in downtown Markleeville – I lived here for a year and a half and spent many a summer evenings under those pink flowers on the bench in front of the Cutthroat Saloon watching the world go by.
Highway 89 in downtown Markleeville -   Sat on the corner in front of the Cutthroat Saloon many a summer evenings.
Highway 89 in downtown Markleeville – Sat on the corner in front of the Cutthroat Saloon many a summer evenings.

There is currently a wildfire nearby Markleeville started by lightning strikes that has now burned over 17,000 acres and is less than 10% contained. A shift of wind could send the fire racing toward and through town.   I worry about the 165 residents (including the dogs I think) whose lifetimes are invested in this little mountain community, for the totally volunteer fire department made up of the towns people, and for CalFire, who day after day, year after year, do their very best to protect California from wildfires.

Please send messages to your higher power, whomever that may be, to bless California with rain!

Itty Bitty

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

California’s not pretty these day – she could use a big drink of water.  Please think good thoughts for us!

 

Fun Work Day – Building New Friendships


Everybody thinks being a hotel sales manager is all fun and games – entertaining clients, schmoozing, playing – believe me, it’s not.  And while we DO those fun things, it’s also just one part of our responsibilities.

This is the fun part – Triple A Baseball games – Giants feeder team in Sacramento – the Rivercats …  Sunday afternoon game with a client and her hubby and my hubby.  But it goes beyond that. This lady is someone I’ve known just as a meeting planner for many years.  I’ve always been intrigued by her personality – her “outgoingness” – her interaction with others in positive ways.  My new job and the segments I am responsible for have put us together in business and encouraged an opportunity to get to know each other on a more personal level.  I still admire her spunk and desire to motivate others.  She is also taking the reins as president of  one of the meeting professional associations I belong to and she is working on engaging me as one of her board members.

Thank you, Kit, for the vote of confidence!  I see a huge opportunity to make a new friendship – not just work related, but a personal friendship.  I like her as a person.

MarieKit
Itty Bitty and Kit … Baseball!

The rest of the reality of being a sales manager is 8 – 10 hours a day of making prospecting phone calls to potential clients, responding to requests for proposals for meetings, conferences, training sessions, special events from meeting and event planners, showing the property to prospective clients, negotiating and preparing proposals and contracts, following up on outstanding pieces of business – meeting sales call quotas and dollar quotas on business booked, maintaining relationships with not only existing clients but also prospective clients, checking in with clients who are “in house” during their meetings, attending after hour mixers and meetings, it never ends.  And I love it.

Though I hate to admit it, working is my salvation.  It keeps me grounded, keeps my mind busy,  keeps me physically busy, keeps me engaged with others on a work and social basis.

Working makes me appreciate my down time – and gives me the ability to help those I love when I need to.

I have had jobs I loved – and jobs I hated where I cried all the way to work.  But I’ve worked in the hospitality industry since 1969 and I cannot begin to imagine doing anything else.

I wish everyone loved passionately what they did for a living.

Namaste – I honor you – and wish you contentment in whatever ;you do.

 

Itty Bitty

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Dregs of Apartment Living and Differing Points Of View


My son texted me on his way to work yesterday afternoon.   “Everything has been stolen out of my car. Nice.”  It was parked in a guest stall in our apartment complex.

Unfortunately he had a few more boxes of belongings to bring into our apartment from our move.  Unfortunately it was a lot of his clothes and his dress shoes, and all of his yearbooks from junior high and high school.

Maybe he will figure out it is important to be motivated enough to finish a task.  I bought him necessities this morning.  I am sad at the reinforcement that some people just don’t have any respect for other people’s belongings.  He is sad, even angry, as his yearbooks were a big part of what little he had left of his childhood.

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Had dinner with hubby, his daughter and son-in-law – it was nice to visit with them  – they know that I am not living there, she thinks it’s kind of weird, but understands.  Nice dinner – except that hubby had a little too much to drink and was a little sloshy.

About 9:30 pm I decided it was time for me to go. We talked briefly about plans for the weekend – tomorrow  he is spending time with his son and daughter for Father’s day – I am  doing my own chores for the weekend and pulling out the remaining few boxes of mine from storage so I can close it down – $100 a month is $ 100!

The concept that I have stuff in storage and that I didn’t have it in and about “our” house seemed disagreeable to hubby.  We obviously have differing ideas about his house being our house (a concept I don’t believe is true because of his attitudes when push comes to shove).  He told me I was hurting his feelings by not having all my stuff there.

He doesn’t understand that the residence is HIS house – with his things, and I simply do not feel there is enough space for me to have my things, my treasures, that represent my life.  It’s nothing personal, I certainly am not offended – there just isn’t room.   He says if I can’t be a “we” in “our house” then fuck me.  He doesn’t realize how often he tells me it’s his house – and his rules go.  Fuck me.

I would love to truly feel we are a “we” – but I don’t. He’s mad again at me.  He was inebriated again.  I don’t know what to say.

Yes, I am enjoying the peace and quiet.

Namaste – I honor you – and your peace and quiet.

Itty Bitty.

 

 

Turning Of Seasons And Changes


Not a day goes by when I want to post here about something going on in my life. The problem is that I am always concerned about the anonymity of those about which I am compelled to write.  So I don’t.  And I don’t know why anyone would want to read about all my DRAMA!  I get sick of it.

My existence continues in flux – all areas of it, it seems.

Work/Income/Self Esteem

My little Villa has now closed after two years – the owner deciding to sell for personal reasons – so I spent the summer wrapping up the last of 8 or so weddings, the last one being November 1.  That chapter of my life is now closed.

While I would love to develop my wedding planning & coordinating business as I have been toying with over the last 6 months to continue on in the wedding/special event industry,  the reality is that my social security income (which I filed for in April) is just not enough to sustain me or allow me to feel productive and contributing to my home.

I have begun applying for hotel management positions once again.  At 64, and in an industry full of youngsters, it will be challenging.  One application (for which I was recommended) went totally unanswered.

A second application has resulted, at least, in a phone interview tomorrow with a corporate HR person.  We shall see how it goes ….

Family

And while trying to carry on with some semblance of a normal life, much of my time has been consumed with nudging my youngest (39) through the maze of recovering to the extent he can from a year and a half of a mixed-state manic/depressive bi-polar episode.  He is working to pick up the pieces of a life fallen apart.  He is dealing with probation as a result of a substance abuse issue he works daily to keep at bay.  He engages 3-4 days a week with a wellness recovery program that deals with mental illness issues on a broad scale and works 3-4 days a week at a minimum wage job (restaurant server) after 10 years of earning $75-$90K a year.  His anxiety levels and mania make it impossible for him to return to his former career path at this time.

As busy as he is, he doesn’t sleep many nights (mania) and efforts by his mental health support team to find the right “cocktail” of meds is a slow process.  We know they are trying, and it IS proving a slow process.

Marriage

And to make it all more challenging, my husband’s home-based environmental consulting business is at 60% of what it was last year, he is stressing about money, and for whatever reasons, he seems incapable of motivating himself to develop the diversification he wants to do to increase business.

In additions to his stresses about money, I was hopeful that he would be my rock emotionally to help me guide my son through his issues. It has become quite clear that hubby has no understanding (or willingness to learn, engage, show compassion) of mental illness – anxiety disorders – bipolar disorders – and how they affect individuals dealing with these.  He sees a 39 year old male who used to earn big bucks, and must simply be mooching off of us, taking advantage of the situation and simply being lazy.

The arguments and frustrations on both our parts have at times made me wonder if I can stay in this marriage.

My son has never in his adult life asked for a thing from me, and been totally self-sufficient since he was 17 years old.   Both he and my daughter (43) suffer from anxiety disorders and genetic pre-disposition to bi-polar disorder and he is in need of emotional (and yes, a little financial support if in no other way than a roof over his head and guaranteed food in his belly) while he finds his way.

My life once again is in flux as it is wont to do … and again I am feeling that old feeling of realizing I can truly count on no one but myself.

Maybe it’s just the changing seasons.  Or the changing seasons of life.

Time for more reflection, introspection and setting a plan for the future.

Namaste and peace to all who are in the midst of change …

Itty Bitty

 

Ex’s Listen Up! It’s Only The Kids That Lose.


  1. You’ve been divorced by your choice for near a decade – your children are 20-somethings – you’ve moved on and are in another long-term relationship.  Your daughter with him graduated from university yesterday and yet you were incapable of letting her take just one photo with her mom and dad.  She wanted to.  Her dad was fine with it – you refused.  She was sad.  But it was, of course, all about you.
                       Obviously not “our family”
    So there were two graduation celebrations – the one Friday at your house, and the one Saturday at ours.  And you demanded her time yesterday morning when she was getting ready at his house for her graduation because he would have the rest of the day (yes, it was Father’s day).  I’m sure if you had your way, there would have been two separate graduation ceremonies – one for you without him there.  All about you.  We could have all celebrated together at a restaurant (neutral territory) and thought about her feelings on her day.
    What are you going to do, Mother, when she gets married (which is on the horizon)?  Are you going to refuse her the joy of a photo with her parents then?  Are you going to refuse to come to the wedding if he’s there?  Are you going to make that all about you?
    What are you going to do when she has her babies?  Are you going to refuse to be there if he’s there?  Are you going to deprive her of the joy of both of her parents being present at the birth of your grandchildren?  Are you going to make her choose?  But, of course, it’s all about you.
    I don’t get it.  Why are some parents so hostile that they can never let go of the ill will towards another parent?  There was no domestic violence or abuse of any kind.  You decided you didn’t want to be married to him any more.  You still refuse to speak to him, much less be in the same room.
    Is it just me? Am I the crazy one?  I think not.  I am still friends with my ex – and am still close with his children AND his ex-wife (his kid’s mother).  We just couldn’t be married any longer.  My daughter and ex-son in law totally realize why they are not married any more, but they are incredible at co-parenting.  Always on the same page.  They do joint celebrations of all sorts about the kids with all of his family and all of ours – together – in the same space – celebrating the children.  They have joint family meetings so the kids know they are both on the same page.  Ex son in law’s parents are divorced – they both join in on all the celebrations – with their new spouses.  It can be done!
    You are forgetting the most important thing of all – so much bigger than your ego and pride – you are hurting your daughter far more than you realize.  You don’t see her pain – we do.   And some day soon, you will do the same thing with your son.  Go ahead, be so small minded that you are okay with taking away from their joy.
    Please don’t – please realize you must make these joyful life passages about them – celebrate them as mother and father – you don’t have to like him – but you can be civil. You can be in the same room at the same time and actually enjoy yourself.   All too soon these wonderful experiences will be done.  You or he will no longer be in their lives – don’t deprive them of precious memories because you haven’t grown up and moved on.
    And believe it or not,
    Namaste – I still honor you.  You did a hell of a job in HELPING raise her to be the amazing young woman she is.
    Itty Bitty