Thursday, December 31, 2015

2015 Goals Rundown

2015 was an interesting year.  Let's take a look at my goals and what I accomplished:

This year will be my first in Colorado.  There are so many things I want to do out in this part of the country, that some sightseeing/travel is on my list as well as personal growth.
  • find a job
    • Accepted job January 22nd and started job January 26th
    • Accepted a consulting job August 11th
    • Accepted a consulting job end of August
    • Quit one consulting job end of September
  • find a place to live
    • 6 month lease December 2014 - May 2015.  This was temporary...needed to find a job before I can find something a little more permanent
    • ......Never moved out :( Still living in a temporary house with very little things.  
  • become a resident of the state 
    • Went to DMV January 2nd, $21 for license
    • VIN verification at police station, January 6th.  $15
    • Car Insurance.  January 8th.  Saved approx. $400 a year.
    • Registration & Plates from DMV.  January 8th.  $550.95.  80 minutes of waiting.
    • Post office to mail back NY license plates.  $5.75, got back $65 from NYS prorated registration fees.
    • Received my Colorado License in the mail Jan.12th.
  • buy used or new/upgrade my phone (in January my phone turns 4!)
    • My friend gave me her old iPhone 4 in February  It was in perfect condition.  Because it was compatible with Verizon, I switched from Sprint, I hadn't had an upgrade in 2 years so it was an easy switch.
  • start meditating
    • mediation 1/11/15, January & February were filled with meditation....that slowly stopped in March.
  • work on my spirituality
    • perhaps find out who my spirit guides are
      • I tried to do a few  guided meditations but was unable to succeed in this.
      • However, I talk to them regularly and thank them for their work
      • I also took a past-life regression class, but struggled with it.
  • get more music and update my ipod/ipad
    • utilized my library free downloads a few weeks this year
    • April 19th, somehow deleted all the downloads of music from the last year or two...I had some on a backup drive...but I still lost about 200 new/recent songs.
    • April 29th - restored my lost music!
    • December - new bf has great music, trying to convince him to make me a 'mixed tape'
  • date - 
    • Went on dates from eHarmony. 
      • First Guy - 3 dates
      • Second Guy - 1 date
      • Third Guy - 6 dates
    • Took the months of March, April, May, June off from dating
    • Signed up for another 3 months of online dating.  July, August, September
      • met 3 people in August, one of which lead to one month of dates in August.  It didn't work our romantically, but we wanted to stay friend by September and we've hung out a bunch more since.
      • met 1 guy in September...had A LOT dates.  We started dating exclusively.  Fell in love :)
  • explore new areas/adventures here in Colorado and its neighboring states
    • Estes Park, CO
    • Winter Park, CO
    • Nederland, CO
    • Moab, Utah
    • Colorado Springs, CO
    • Alamosa, CO
    • Steamboat Springs, CO
  • try to do at least three 'fun' things a month
    • January
      • January 3rd attended a Tama Kieves seminar about releasing fear in the new year  (free) and went to lunch with a friend and a new friend.  
      • January 9th went to Boulder Beer Brewery for a tour and Celestial Seasonings for a tour (free)
      • January 11th went to the Denver Zoo for a few hours (free)
      • January 13th - saw Wild ($9).  The manager got there pretty late so the movie started late.  They gave out free popcorn...and then a voucher for a free movie before the end of this year.
      • January 15 - 18th - Naples, FL
      • January 24th - Snowshoe at RMNP with a meetup group (free, but paid for gas)
    • February
      • February 4th - Handwriting analysis seminar ($10)
      • February 7th - Past life group regression ($25)
      • February 8th - Flatirons Hike (free) 
      • February 14th - Estes Park, RMNP and Stanley Hotel ($17)
      • February 15th - Comedy Club
      • February 22nd - attended a play (with a date; tickets were a gift)
    • March
      • March 8th - Astrology workshop; natal charts ($10)
      • March 11th - Attended an Inspiring Women event (free)
      • March 14th - Frozen Dead Guy Festival, Nederland
      • March 19th - March Madness begins
      • March 28-31 - Winter Park with (some) family
    • April
      • April 4th - Seder dinner ($10)
      • April 11th - Burritos & Board Games ($5)
      • April 23rd - Dart Warz ($10)
      • April 25th - Board Games (made 16 mini lasagnas)
      • April 29th - Movie Screening ($10)
    • May
      • May 1st - saw a previous colleague. Drinks at the Four Seasons
      • May 8 -11th - went to NY for a visit
      • May 17th - hike with Meetup group
      • May 23rd - Colorado National Monument (free with pass)
      • May 24th - 27th - Moab, UT.  Canyonlands & Arches (free with pass + $100 in group guided tous)
    • June
      • June 9th - REI class:  How to Climb a 14er (free)
      • June 11th - Taste of the West Festival, Lakewood (downpour & lightening made this close way early....before we got our samples!) ($8)
      • June 14th - Wine & Paint ($30)
      • June 18th - REI class: Gourmet Camp Cooking (free)  instructor didn't show up
      • June 20th - A round table discussion on what men want in a relationship

    • July
      • July 1st - Wicked at DCPA ($109, yikes! and I don't even get to sit with my friend)
      • July 14-15:  Colorado Springs....Pikes Peak, Cheyenne Mountain Zoo, Garden of the Gods, Airplane Restaurant
      • July 15-17:  Alamosa....Bishop Castle (rye), Great Sand Dunes NP, Zapata Falls, Gator park
      • July 18:  Four Corners, Mesa Verde
      • July 19:  Nurf Gun war
      • July 20:  Rockies Game at Coors Stadium
      • July 21:  Waterworld
      • July 22:  Tour of Mile High Stadium
      • July 30: Attended a nonprofit fundraiser/info BBQ
    • August
      • August 7-17th - New York
        • August 9th - BBQ
        • August 11th  - Dentist and see two friend/old coworkers
        • August 13th - Tea leaf reading 
        • August 14th - Beach
      • August 18th - Book of Mormon at DCPA ($45 plus $10 parking)
      • August 21st - Sunflower Field near airport
      • August 22nd - Scavenger Hunt ($50+)
      • August 22nd - Book of Mormon at DCPA ($12 parking. date paid dinner. tickets were free)
    • September
      • September 1st - Hall & Oats at Red Rocks Amphitheater ($50)
      • September 4th - Comedy show with a date (date paid)
      • September 5th & 6th - Steamboat Springs
      • September 13th - Euro board game night (free)
      • September - bought a rides
      • September 25th - Date.  drinks/dinner  ($25)
      • September 27th - Blood moon super eclipse (free)
      • September 30th - Salsa Dancing ($10)
    • October
      • October 2nd - Lookingglass Alice performance (tickets were given to me).  Dinner beforehand.  ($12 parking +$22 drinks)
      • October 3rd - Mount Evans ($48 lunch, but FREE with park pass, saved $10!)
      • October 10th - Volunteered for a fundraiser
      • October 17-18th - Salt Lake City, UT
      • October 22nd- Dallas, TX
    • November
      • November 6-12 - Visit NY
      • November 15 - Broncos Game
      • November 17, 24 - Bar Trivia
      • November 26 - Meet the BF's family
    • December
      • December 6-8 - Steamboat Springs
      • December 10th - build gingerbread house
      • December 12th - Holiday Dinner with friends
      • December 17th - Paint Night
      • December 19th - Christmas Party
      • December 24th - Star Wars
      • December 29th - Nuggets Game
      • December 8, 22, 29th - Bar Trivia
  • give more compliments
    • Yeah, I am going to wait on this.  Too much other stuff to work on.  And I don't see a lot of people.
    • Thanked my employee for doing such a wonderful job.  And told her how much I valued her opinion.
    • Salsa dancing - I told a few men I thought they were very good dancers/leaders.  They seemed to appreciate that.
    • Giving the boyfriend a lot of Thank Yous and compliments.  Everyone needs to hear that for everyday things too.
  • stop feeling obligated
    • I guess this is one of the reasons I moved.  I felt obligated with a lot of family things or to maintain certain friendships back home.  Now, I have a lot less obligations and I have enjoyed that when I see people I enjoy it more than when you have to be there.
    • I stood up for myself at work and asked for more money because they kept asking me to do more, piling up more work on a super low salary...I felt obligated to do the work, of course; but at what price?
    • Work conference in April reminded me that I'd rather succeed and put on a good performance than to disappoint people, even if that means stretching myself too thin because other people aren't stepping up to the plate.  I felt strained, stressed and started to resent those people and their empty and unfulfilling promises.  Yet they had no clue the burden they put on me and thought everything was all right.  Especially because it was work, and my high levels of professionalism, I can't stand by and watch things fall apart.  I make myself feel obligated to step up and go out of my way for little or no recognition because I'd rather other people to have a good experience and to make my organization not seem like such a mess.
    • I took on two part time jobs in addition to my full time job because I hate saying no when people ask for help.  And it could be rewarding...I just need to check that I am not overextending myself and getting burnt out, otherwise it isn't worth it....and i'll have to stop feeling obligated when I owe them nothing.

Sunday, December 20, 2015

we know what we want

It took me just shy of 2 months to fall in love with this guy.  I have been so happy.  It has been a hard adjustment having someone around all the time again since I've gotten used to a solo life....but it has been fun, exciting and keeping me really busy.  It is moving quickly....but why shouldn't it? We are older.  We know what we want.  And we have the time to invest in each other.  

I think he is my future husband.

Monday, November 23, 2015

My first football game

I bought one half price ticket to a Broncos game back in the summer...but then I met this guy and I rather go with someone versus alone.   So we bought full price tickets and I got to see my first live football game.

The weather was very cooperative which is good because I feared a November football game would be cold, and it wasn't.  The sunset was beautiful.

Thursday, November 19, 2015

In a relationship

New guy and I have been very open and honest with each other since the beginning.  On date 5 we decided not to date other people and on date 8 we decided we were boyfriend/girlfriend.  Kinda crazy to think I am in a relationship again....finally, but very exciting too.

This has potential and I am looking forward to seeing where it goes.

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

all in

I decided I was going to like the new guy.  Forget about Stiff...he is Stiff.   Sure, great on paper, more my type in the looks department, and aside from our trip to Mt. Evans....our 'dates' have been boring.  Well, I can't call them 'dates' because we aren't dating...but when we hang out.  Anyway, going to dinner and the movies one night with Stiff, made me know what? I enjoy my time with the other guy.

And that was that.  My text messages to him got cuter, I was a little more flirty.  I was even tempted to go to the airport when he came back from his trip (and before the next one the following day) to give him a kiss and let him know I was interested.   My roommate kindly reminded me I'd probably be viewed as psychotic if I did that though because we only went out four times.   So I texted it to him so when he got off the plane, he knew I was thinking about him....

...and the next day he proposed that he meet me at work for a quick lunch before his next flight.  And I am glad that he did, because seeing him again after that break reinforced I wanted to see him when he got back a week later.  It is hard to have a 2 week break when you just start dating...cause a lot can happen in that time.

I don't think a day went by during that second week that we didn't text each other at least once.

I am still concerned about him not liking the last woman he dated...for FIVE years and that relationship just ended.  He said from date 1 he didn't like her, so what if he really doesn't like me....but that I am the first person he went out with since his breakup?  Also, I don't want to be a rebound.

Until I know more...I am going all in.  Aside from feelings being hurt, what do I have to lose?

Monday, October 26, 2015

mix between the men I've loved

It's been 2.5 weeks since I met this new guy.  I've been torn.  Could I be interested? not?  I told him I wasn't entirely attracted to him but then again I wasn't attracted to SI at the beginning either.

I think what I am intrigued about is he is a good cross between the two guys I've loved.  He is chatty and outgoing and makes me laugh, like SI did, and I could tell that if we dated he'd treat me well.  Who doesn't want to be adored?  He also likes to do a companion too, which I've longed for.  And like ManFriend, we kiss really well together.  We've kissed for like 2 hours.  Who does that anymore?

So, this might have potential.

Monday, October 19, 2015

mt evans

It took me 14 months to make it to Mount Evans...and I am so glad I was able to catch it on the last weekend they were open this season.   Mount Evans highway is the highest paved road in North America and gains about 7,000 feet in elevation in 28 miles to reach the summit at 14,264 feet.  Well, no, the parking lot at sign is at 14,130 feet and then you need to walk up 134 feet on a trail to get to the top.

Stiff and I made plans to head up to Mt. Evans.  The morning of, I got nervous, my area had a massive cloud and I worried that visibility from the top would be horrible...and did they get snow from the rain the night before?  But as we drove west on i-70 it started to clear up.    When we got to the pay booth the attendant informed us that the road to the top was open....but it was 'snowpacked' and icy after mile 6.   Since we got there around 11:30, I was hoping that the afternoon sun melted the snow but was happy Stiff was driving just in case.

The ride up was pretty.
Echo Lake, 10,600 feet

Summit Lake, 13,00 feet
The summit was only 35 degrees.  While I brought my winter down jacket, gloves and an ear thing, I only wore my jacket...mistake.  My hands and ears were freezing.  The walk up the trail to the top wasn't bad...there was a dusting of snow in some places and a tad bit of ice but it wasn't bad at all.  We spent some time taking in the views, getting pictures and then this photographer was there and we were a part of his picture too.
A few from the top
 and the way back down...
winding road....there are NO guard rails
And I saw mountain goats in the 'wild' for the first time!  I had my 200 camera lens with me...which clearly wasn't zoom enough and binoculars which really helped to see them.
My first Mountain Goat sighting

It's Autumn!  Down at the beginning of the highway

I am so happy I finally got up here.  And it was free for me because I have the National Park Pass, so I saved $10.  It was such a perfect day.  The timing of everything, the weather, the company...I had such a great day.

CoDot information

Friday, October 16, 2015

the kiss date

Date #3 with this guy was dinner, a play and then drinks.  We spent 7 1/2 hours together.  I find him talkative, a little outgoing and funny.  The guy asked how the date was going....and I said well, but I wasn't sure, I don't know if I am attracted to him.  He asked why.  It's the beard I think.  It's a full one.  Or is it the facial structure/features?  I am not sure why I am not sure.  He didn't seem too offended, and if anything, I think he tried even harder to get me to like him by saying things I found either fascinating or funny.  He asked about my view on kissing then came in for one.  It was ok.  The mustache/beard is a hard adjustment.  The kiss was ok to good and mixed with some really weird tongue movements that I haven't experienced since like, high school.  We kiss on and off and time passes and it is after 1 am, he missed his train and I drive him to another station...where we kiss in the car for another 30 minutes.   But I am not sure how I feel.  I can't feel guilty about kissing a guy I barely know, that is part of dating.  You need to feel compatible and I think kissing is an important part of that.  Kissing helps with the attraction too...if it is good.  And if it is bad...then well, that helps with the decision not to want to see them again.  

He wants to see me again. I guess I will.  I mean, I haven't found a good reason not to yet.  He isn't "my type" but "my type" has never worked I try not to go by that anymore.

Monday, October 12, 2015

salsa group lesson with date

A few weeks ago, I had a second date with a guy I met online.  During the first date he mentioned he just started taking salsa dancing lessons so when ideas were needed for date #2, I sort of invited myself to join him.  What better way to understand someone than awkward uncomfortable dancing when making a fool out of yourself.  I feel like it is good to get that out of the way early.  Laughing at yourself in front of someone else.

In high school I took tap and jazz for about 3 years.  It was fun, but I was never really good at it, not loose enough, not having the music move me.  Then in my 20s I took some ballroom dance lessons with SI.  Those started fun, but became stressful.  And it was awkward, even with someone I knew, was attracted to and liked.

We started the lesson learning the basic steps and then adding on.  I was doing great.  It is easy to watch and to get the footing right - alone.  Once we started dancing with someone, it got harder.  And then, like most group dance lessons, you dance around the room, the basic short routine you learned with a new person.  Everyone has different styles and is at different levels.  I think this is supposed to make you better, but it started to confuse me, doubting my steps. taking more misteps because of poor leading.  One guy critiqued me - he didn't enjoy my dancing.  I thought he was awkward and the worst one I danced with so I wasn't offended.   After our dancing circle we were able to dance with the person we went with and there I was, making eye contact for way too long with this new guy.  What do you do?  I start laughing.  It is awkward.

Our beginners group joined the intermediate group and we did a big circle dance swap thing again....and I had no clue what the advanced men were doing to me...but I went with it and laughed and apologized over and over that today was day #1 and I had no idea what to do.  Thank goodness my big smile won them all over.

Soon it was back to 'open dance' with my 'partner'.  He needed a bathroom break so I go sit on the side.  Only seconds passed and a young Spanish guy came over and reached his hand out to me implying he wanted to dance.  Not sure how long my date would be, I said sure.  Why not?   The guy was good.  He had me all over the floor.  He was intense. He touched me in all the right places that make salsa sensual.  He led me well and he had that look of not only confidence, but an intense stare when in the moment.  I see my date watch from the sidelines, but I wasn't going to stop this great dance with this stranger midsong.  My date had 4 lessons...he was stiff and awkward, this guy...he'd make me want to learn.  Song over, my stranger and I part ways without having said a word.

My date said he was very impressed with my skills.  It wasn't was being led well. I was loose, relaxed...and sweating quite a bit (which was a little embarrassing).  He and I go back to our structured salsa basic step and turn.  After 3 hours I called it a night. I was exhausted.

Date walked me to my car and asked to hang out 2 days later.  I guess I made a good second impression.

Thursday, October 8, 2015

new wheels

Since I moved, I thought about getting a bike.  We have so many great trail systems out here.  But the biggest thing holding me back was money, second was what would I use the bike for? Road? Mountain?  I kept going back and forth.  My friends who newly became obsessed with biking told me to get a good bike, its worth the money.  Then you have all the accessories and was just too much.  Winter rolled around and I forgot about the idea of wanting a bike.  Spring came and I was so busy adjusting to working again.  Summer almost ended by the time I maybe figured out what I wanted.

I wanted a mountain bike...until I was in Steamboat Springs and I saw mountain biking in action.  The following weekend I went biking shopping.  I ended up with a hybrid, exactly what I didn't want.  But I didn't want to commit to road or dirt.  The hybrid is in the middle.  Who would have thought that my 'new' fear of commitment would spread to bikes too?

I ended up with a Giant/Liv Alight 1.  It is nice and light and comfortable "city" bike.  Great if I want to commute, but it can handle some dirt too.

It's been 14 years since I road a bike...and my last experience was tough hills in Vermont I wasn't ready for that sort of scared me from biking again...even though I set up my bike as a recumbent bike for a few months.  Anyway, the point is I needed to ease into it this time so I wouldn't be turned against it.

My first ride was 3 miles, then 6 then 13 then 15.  There were a few areas with softer dirt/rocky and my bike really struggled but if I want to pursue that type of cycling in the is still an option.

I met up with several people from craigslist for a bike rack and tension bars or whatever they are called and got 'deals' well, as far as not paying full price.  I spent a lot of time researching the platform racks vs the arm racks...and went with the arm racks only because I wanted the option of toting along more than 2 bikes....which might be a rare occurrence, but you never know.

Tuesday, October 6, 2015

steps towards future career

I've had a lot of free time since I adjusted to working again.  And the summer is long.  I naturally wake up early and had a full day.  What does one do when they get home at like 4?

I was approached by someone to do some part-time work.  I figured this would be great because I could use the money and I had the time.  I'd love to pay off my debt faster and have money to travel and take trips.

But naturally my full time job got busy and I had less time to work than I thought.

And then, someone else asked me to do some mindless work. I did that in a few hours.  They liked it and then BOOM they want me to take on a lot more and upgraded the work to things I enjoy.  Sure, the work is interesting - very similar to what I do regularly and a few hours....OK....but it turns out they didn't want a few hours.

Job #2 now contacts me saying they don't want to pay me as an PT employee and would rather I work independently.  Job #3 doesn't have payroll in place, and I am to assume that they'd be paying me as a consultant as well.  What to do?

Ideally, I'd love to be a consultant and work remotely.  This way I can do my 'family' thing...even if it is just me and a kid.  And I could live wherever I want (I've been thinking of moving again, to a smaller town).  This is the end goal.  How to get there?

So I decide I should incorporate.

I had a lot of questions...and I don't have an accountant or a lawyer.  I only have a small amount of friends, and of those only one or two are consultants.  I ask them a handful of questions.

I did a little bit of a 'rush' I know this is temporary, eventually I'll need to restructure if I want to expand.  I remember back to SI's consulting company and that would be a great thing...maybe.  Having a few consultants working for you but then also the hassle and liability of having them.

I don't's goals.  It's something to work towards.  I just need to figure out how to balance my time making everyone happy and not keep saying yes to more work when I don't have the time.  But I like making people happy and saying no is hard.

I still want to date and have hobbies and enjoy my time in Colorado.  We'll see what happens.

Friday, October 2, 2015

tive vs ed

I finally understand the difference between attractive and attracted.

Stiff, I found attractive, but I wasn't sure if I was attracted to him.  I didn't realize this existed.  Until recently, all the men I've found attractive were the same men I was attracted to.

I met a new man last week, I am not sure I am attracted to him either...but then again, I am not sure I found him attractive when I saw him.  So this makes sense.

Of course attraction grows on you.  So, we'll see what happens.

Thursday, October 1, 2015

will I be ready?

I've been single so long that I am not sure I will be ready for a relationship if/when it happens again.  I miss intimacy, I do.  I miss having someone to do things with.  But, the dating part that is needed to get to where you have that....I am not so good with that apparently.

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

just another statistic

How many people get their identity stolen by thieves?  Well, add one more.

Although I think identity is a huge word....someone just used my account and credit card to make a $2,200+ purchase.

After I saw the email that came through about the purchase, I hoped online to make sure it was right...then I called the bank and disputed the charge.  Then I tried to call the vendor, but they were closed.  I didn't sleep well...all I kept thinking about is how did this happen? Who did this.  By the time I woke up in the morning, I convinced myself it was Stiff.

The following morning, I call the vendor. I  explain everything.  I tell them I disputed the charge with my credit card company already...and what else can I do because I don't want this person to have a great time on my dime, they refer me to the fraud department. I hang up.  Thirty minutes later I get a call from the fraud department asking me to call them. Basically I retell the whole story.  They put me on hold, and said that yes it wasn't me.  I ask if I can get the IP address of the computer, they wouldn't give it to me because of privacy issues...hello, was my privacy not violated by someone? anyway, I understand.  They told me they can provide this information to the police and they would appreciate it if I got them involved.  Time spent on the phone or holding so far....1.5 hours.

In the afternoon I go to my police station and ask to file a report.  I explain everything again.  He seems reluctant to want to help because it is probably out of state.  And I try saying over and over again...but we can know for sure once we get the IP address...please call.  So he tries calling and no one answers.  He starts the paperwork, I call, no one answers.  I was at the police station for 35 minutes.

I get home and I call the main customer service line, not the fraud department. I hold for 15 minutes and get disconnected.  I call back. I wait 12 minutes only to be transferred to another department....on hold another 8 minutes.  The fraud department is closed for the day....although no one seems to know what time they close.  5 PM Eastern time I ask? No, Central...then they should still be open....oh, it must be eastern.  Seriously?  I ask to confirm the number...and he makes me tell him the number.  I am hesitant.

I have spent a ton of time on this.  And for what?  No one to bother to investigate anyway?  That amount of money is a felony....sure, it isn't an 'exciting' crime...but it adds up.  And I think most people if it is being taken care of my a dispute/credit card fraud department that people don't pursue filing complaints because it is taken care of....but the person who committed it still can have/use all the things they've purchased.  Me, I asked to make sure the tickets they purchased were void so when they attempt to use them, they can't.  Talk about embarrassing.

The good thing is that I've wanted to change all my passwords for a while and I haven't so that is still a work in process...but I've made a nice dent so far.

Monday, September 21, 2015

acknowledgement of not hearing from you again

I was 'happy' when I found the following article, "The Most Compassionate Way to End a Relationship" because it solidified everything I've been thinking about for the last 8 years I've been single.

The article tells of "ghosting"/avoidance which is my biggest pet dating peeve.  I learned it is because my personality allows for accomplishing a 'humane breakup".  And with 'breakup' we can mean end of a friendship too.

I don't always need "closure".  For example, I wasn't feeling it with Mr. Stiff last week either and I knew that dating him would be difficult.  But I keep doing what every not-single person says:  give them a try. Everyone has flaws.  Your not perfect either. Give it more time.  Are you being too picky?  You aren't getting younger.  etc.

So, maybe I am drawing it out too long.  Most times my initial feeling are correct and keep "trying" and it doesn't turn out to be worth it.  It is fine....that is what dating is all about, weeding people out, hoping to find someone that works.

I have no problem telling men that I don't want to see them anymore.  And dammit, don't I deserve a little more respect than tossing me to the side like garbage even if we didn't hit it off?  I mean, it is obvious when you text everyday when they either substantially cut back or stop.  Of course warning lights go off.  Day 2 3 passes.  Do people really think this is acceptable?

I told a few dates on the first date I wasn't interested.  In January, February and just last week, I said it to the guys who ignored me for up to 3 days.  I am not trying to be mean and I don't view it as that.  I feel it is more of an acknowledgement that I am not expecting to hear from you again.  You are off the hook.  I agree, don't text or call me again, thank you.

(update) On the dating website, I was emailing this one guy just a little bit, maybe a week, and I get an email from him saying that he's enjoyed chatting with me and I seem intriguing, but that he has been on a few dates with a woman and although he isn't sure where it is going, he doesn't like to date more than one person at a time and that if it doesn't work out with her, he is hoping I wouldn't write him off.   WOW.  brownie points for this guy.  I hate being ignored, but I wasn't expecting that after exchanging like 2 messages! Most people don't write back, and that is OK, no explanation needed....not until you meet and you've been out more than twice.  I very much appreciated his message and wished him the best, and that I hope it works with her.

Friday, September 18, 2015

good samaritan

I spent a Sunday afternoon a few weeks ago with a friend giving out supplies to the homeless.  We walked the streets with bags full of toothbrushes, soap, shampoo, chapstick, toilet paper, hand sanitizer, lotion, granola bars, water, tissues, etc.   I talked with many people about their situations, what other supplies they need and they were truly so grateful for us.  We've all run into really grumpy homeless people and it makes us reconsider our giving actions...but we can't let one person ruin that for all the others.  One young lady was a lawyer, she is still trying to get a job in that field.  You'd be shocked about how some of them got where they are.  It was heartbreaking.

Some of the hand sanitizers came individually wrapped.  As I was handing some to a few men, they did a double take....they got so excited they thought they were condoms!  The homeless people are getting a lot more action than me!

Supplies Denver's homeless requested that we didn't have....nail clippers, mirrors, blankets, medical supplies.

Wednesday, September 16, 2015


My recent conversation with the guy about passion made me start to think.  Will I find passion again?I don't have a lot of relationship experience, 3 guys, sort of. And how long do you give it before you give up? With Cop#1, I had it from the beginning, with SI, it grew on me and with ManFriend it was instantaneous.  But both Cop#1 and ManFriend were really just physical, it never would have worked long term but it was hard to stop and lasted longer than it should have.  On the other hand SI, was more, I think.  There was the potential for long term, but maybe not enough passion on his end to make it last.  Where is that balance?  I've been willing to compromise on passion...and the last few people I attempted to date all lacked it but they all had other qualities I hoped would compensate for that area.  And while I've been willing to accept that, they are the ones that end it for whatever reason.  Even Mountain Man - we had this crazy traveling romance, but nothing more...but yet, I consider him my best friend and he is always there for me if I need someone.  And still that doesn't translate into passion.

I yearn for being desired and loved.

Monday, September 14, 2015

confirmation of not pursuing

I've said it over and over again.  If you've been out with someone more than 5 times and/or if you slept with them a few shouldn't just let if "fade" by ignoring them.  We are old...what's wrong with honesty?

The guy I've been talking to for a month started to ignore me after I sent a text about kissing.  I didn't text him for 5 days, and he didn't text me either.  A passive-aggressive move I made after he didn't acknowledge my text was to update new photos of me on the dating website we met through.  A few days later he did the same.

I don't know why I got upset when he ignored me.  Was it the mixed signals?  Inviting me to watch a movie but yet only peck on the cheek?  I am not sure I liked him.  He was a challenge, and I love challenges.  He was like a clam.  Sealed shut. I had to work hard to get him to elaborate on responses.  He barely asked me any questions after date #1.  But, for some reason, I enjoyed his company.

I finally texted him "All week I expected to receive a text from you.  So, it didn't work out romantically, but if you need a friend..."(and a little something about work).  He responded he'd really like to be friends, and then we have a decent dialogue.  Towards the end I say "anyway, I am glad you want to be friends (I've never suggested friends to any guy I attempted to date) but without attraction/passion friendship isn't a problem"  and he responds "it's not you.  I haven't felt passion in a long time."

Yeah, he mentioned that the night I met his ex-girlfriend...and how they didn't have any passion for 2 1/2 years but stayed together.

See.   Open and honest communication.  It ended well.  I didn't need closure - but I felt like I needed to acknowledge the fact that he ignored me and confirm that I wasn't going to pursue him.

Monday, September 7, 2015

feeling smart

I wouldn't classify myself as being really behind in technology nor really excelled at it.  I am somewhere in the middle, probably lower half middle.  Many kids know more than I do but I know more than my parents.

My parents think I am this tech genius when all I do is read the error messages on their computer or phone and TRY to figure out how to help them.  Sometimes I have to call the parts/service for help.  Sometimes I can't do anything and refer them to my way more knowledgeable brother-in-law.

When I needed help with my phone, I didn't ask my parents or a peer...I texted my 10 year old nephew.  He helped me fix the problem within seconds.  He told me I was like his nana & poppop because I didn't know these 'simple' things.   Since when does inverting your colors on your phone a simple thing?  I did it by accident, somehow.

But most recently, there was a bad accident a block or two away from where I live and power went out.  When I got home that night, internet was down.   We did the usual unplug everything, restart, the most extreme basics.  Eventually we called our internet provider who said our modem wasn't online and arranged for a service call for $75 in 5 days.  That wasn't going to cut it.   The following day, I sat back down, unplugged everything.  All the wires. All the plugs.  I waited a few minutes and reassembled.  Shockingly the modem was now back in working order and the router seemed to be just fine....but it wasn't working.  Again we speak to the Internet Provider.  They run tests.  They can't figure out what went wrong.  Something, he said, didn't seem right.  A bigger problem.  So he ups our service call to the next morning.

I still was mystified, but I kept thinking....Hmm, modem works, router doesn't.  Start there.  So eventually I figured out that the router somehow reset and was no longer what I named it, but needed to be reprogrammed.  Quite simple task....but why did this take like 5 hours to figure out?

I felt like a genius.  I did it.  I solved our internet problems.  We saved $75 in service/technician fees.
I have no idea why it happened, a simple power outage should not have messed with that - but at least I know signs to look for in the future.

Wednesday, September 2, 2015


I was chatting with this guy I've been on a handful of dates, and I brought it up that he has some serious issues (living with his ex-girlfriend of 2.5 years in the massive family house they purchased) that are probably deal breakers for any sane woman.  I think he was mystified by my critique.  We then shift gears about being hard to read and he tells me that I was very difficult to read on our first date.  Really?  Let's recap this.  We met for a drink.  After 90 minutes we order dinner.  We eat dinner slowly continuing conversation.  When that was done we walked the grounds for 30 minutes and ended with a walk to my car, an awkward hug and an exchange of phone numbers.  That sounds like a great date with a lot of potential to me!  Where is the sign of being hard to read?

 So I ask about this, and he said I was extremely intimidating because I was so relaxed.


I've worked really hard to not be stressed or nervous on the first 1-2 dates.  I now view the first two dates as weeding out/in.  Are they somewhat attractive? Are they somewhat easy to talk to or interesting?  Did they reveal any deal breakers?  and if not...they get a second date.  I am starting to enjoy "practicing" talking to men about basic first date type stuff, an area I've really had a hard time with in the last few years.  I start to get nervous on date 3 or 4 because there is usually a kiss or I start looking at the person for the potential of possible husband material or conversation just fizzles/there is lack of any common interests/goals.  Rarely do I get past 5 dates , but it isn't because I am being picky....most times it is the guy who doesn't want to continue getting to know me or they aren't really ready for a 'real' relationship.

Anyway, I was surprised that the reason I seemed intimidating was because I wasn't too nervous....great feedback!   It is great when the honesty and openness starts so early in the dating process.

Monday, August 31, 2015


Near the Denver Airport are sunflower farms/fields.  I went last year too late - and the sunflowers were dying.  This year we made plans to check it out....and it turned out to be a hazy day due to the fires from California.  It did not look this white...but everyone's pictures came out looking so fake/photo shopped.

But there is something quite magical about the photos anyway because the yellow color of the sunflowers pop out.

Maybe once this weather clears out, I'll have time to go back that way and have pretty blue skies in my sunflower photos.

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

too soon to ask?

When I saw the guy I am talking to after my 2 week absence, I wasn't sure what to expect.  We texted a little bit when I was gone, and in his texts he seems a little cute.  Saying things like he looks forward to seeing me again, using a few of those picture things on the texts, etc.

We hug, we gave a peck on the lips and I get into his car for our drive into the city.

I ask him about his job hunt situation.  He is a consultant so it is very possible his next job will be in DC and will work two or three weeks at a time and then come back to Colorado for a week.  And back and forth.   At this point, he isn't sure, it is still up in the air, but if they offer it and he takes it will be towards the end of September.

He turns to me and says "would you come visit me in DC?".  I was silent.  Then I started laughing.  You know the uncomfortable loud laugh?  I reply, "we are on our 4th date.  That is a lot of pressure."

He responds, "if things go well, and we are still dating?".  I think about it and I say, "yes, of course".

But we haven't even kissed with tongue.  What are the chances in four weeks that we would be far enough at this pace?   We'll see.

I am not giving up just because he might be away a lot.  I like him enough to be intrigued/interested in seeing if this could go anywhere but I think I am going to go back on the website and answer other emails.

Monday, August 24, 2015

what are the chances?

After I lined up all those dates a few weeks ago, I was out of town for about 2 weeks.  I continued to text the one guy that I saw three times and we made plans to do a scavenger hunt around Denver.  The night before he asks if I'd like to go to a play and sure, who doesn't like plays?

As we drive down to the scavenger hunt he tells me that he had four tickets and that his roommate and their friend would be joining us late.  The afternoon passes and one our second trip into the city that day, I ask about his roommate and how they met.  They dated.   Yikes.  I knew there was an issue somewhere...I just wasn't expecting that.  In  a way I was looking forward to seeing what she looked like - were we similar? not?  What went wrong?

At dinner before the show, I figured we were on date 5, time for some bigger questions.  So I ask about his last relationship and how long it was.  And it was her, the roommate, and they dated for 2.5 years they broke up because he claimed there wasn't chemistry.  (does it take over 2 years to figure that out?)  He asked about my dating history and I kept it very brief saying I've only been in 2.5 relationships.  We talked a little about politics and apparently I am more conservative than he is (not a shocker for me) and just as conversations was getting good, we were interrupted by the roommate and friend.  I look up to say hello and I recognize her is one of the guys I went out with earlier that month (the third guy).

Seriously? What are the odds of that?  I barely know anyone here.

Guy #3 was still really easy to talk to, way more outgoing and friendly than my date.  But I am hoping that the guy I've been talking to will become less shy and open up soon....other wise I am not sure if there is a chance.

Saturday, August 15, 2015

quick stop to the Colorado Gator Reptile Park

Aside from the Sand Dunes in Alamosa, there isn't much to do.  The Colorado Gators Reptile Park was a fun spot.  After reading online reviews....I wasn't sure what to expect.  Some people loved it others were very judgmental about the facility and the cost.

I went with 2 other adults, a 9 year old and a baby.   We spent about 2 1/2 hours here because we really took our time.  The facility is a working farm and what they do is interesting so they allow people to come in...and they need admission money because it is a small business.

The first stop is meeting with an employee who gives a little history of the farm and then explains about some of its inhabitants.  He shows us a scorpion, and a few other things...and you have the opportunity to hold them.  I passed on the lizard and the scorpion, but when my nephew said no to the snake...I said yes.  What??? I've never held a snake before and thought it was time.  I was a little freaked out. If you asked if I would do that before the day, I'd probably have said no. But sometimes I am better at spur of the moment occasions.   And it wasn't that bad.  Thank goodness it barely moved when I held it.  It was a solid snake.  I made this goofy face just to make it because it seems scary, but it wasn't...I have one of me smiling too.

And then it was time...the $15 admission paid for itself when I had the opportunity to hold a small alligator.  We all did.  we were allowed to use our own cameras for the photos...but they take one with theirs and then you have the ability to buy a picture/CD/memory stick with the picture.  We had a rare coupon for $5 we got that too.

I didn't think to investigate the alligator wrestling class.  My brother in law would have done that...and you know, I may have been tempted as well.   But, you had to sign up at least one week in advance (which isn't bad!).  At the end of our day there, we saw the beginning of the class..there were a good 6-8 people in it catching a gator about the same size as the one I held.  They gradually move up from small to big.

We bought some gator chow, actually two of a lot of time was spent feeding the outdoor alligators.

I had a surprisingly good time at this place.  I learned a lot and was very impressed that it is a self-sustaining farm and that the alligators were originally brought in to eat the tilapia they were farming.

If you are in the area and looking for something to do...why not check it out.  Go in with an open mind.

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

Fascinating tour of Sports Authority Field at Mile High

In the last two years I've gotten into football.  It is a little fall/winter obsession of mine now.  In fact, I even bought one ticket to the Broncos this season because who wouldn't want to see the Broncos play at home?  And this city is obsessed with football!

I thought the first time I'd see Sports Authority Field at Mile High was going to be the day of my game...but it turns out they give stadium tours.  My visiting family wanted to go and I said yes absolutely that is something I wanted to see too.  I've been a Broncos fan for about 3 years along with Kansas City Chiefs and San Francisco 49ers, but the Broncos had an edge over the other two...and that was before I moved here.

The tour was great.  I've never toured a stadium take that 'great' with a grain of salt.  Our tour guide was very knowledgeable not only with his facts and speech but answering all the questions.  We had access to the executive suites, which were nice, I'd love to watch a game from there (I only was in a suite once to see the Mets play), the United Club area, where the big shots sit and provide feedback to the field (I was surprised this room was bare bones and they bring in all the equipment day of event), the media area, the visitor locker room, one of the keg rooms,  the field tunnel and of course seeing the field (can't go on it).  The tour was a little over 90 minutes.

I am so glad I went because I was able to see a lot more than I would have access to on a game day where all I'd see was the parking lot and my seat with the view of the field!

Sunday, August 9, 2015

My first Rockies game

When my family was in town, I thought it would be great to see a baseball game.  They love it...I am indifferent about baseball and don't even have a favorite team, but I've wanted to check out Coors Field and see a Rockies game.

We were close to the mile high seats...but it offered a great view of the field and the mountains.  The game was a surprisingly good one, where the runs were close and there were a bunch of hits.   I didn't know that the Rockies have a bad reputation of being a poor team...they did really well the night we went and actually won the game.

I was very impressed by the stadium as well.  It was clean, open, a lot of personnel everywhere.  The large popcorn came with free refills which was helpful with my group of nine.  I had a beer, ordered from the guy walking around.  It was $10 but it was big...very reasonable price considering its a ball game.  Speaking of beer.  Fun Fact.  Did you know that Blue Moon was created at Coors Field?

Thursday, August 6, 2015

reentering the dating world

I decided to try this dating thing again after taking a few months off.  Since I was not meeting people inperson or through the few meetups I attended, I figured I should signup for the online dating site again.  I went with the one I did last time because it came out to be a smiggen cheaper and I already had a profile so it was less work.  

Being more proactive was a priority.  I needed to message men whose profiles I liked aside from just responding to first inquires.  Also, the last time I tried this if I went out with a guy and liked him enough to want to see him again/learn more about him, I didn't continue responding/meeting other people....a mistake.  

It started well.  A lot of interest, I couldn't keep up.  I narrowed it down to five guys to meet first.  Going against giving out my number prior to meeting, I gave out my number to this one guy before our first date.  He texted me a lot, called me a few times.  I didn't want to invest that much time takling to someone before I meet them...what was I thinking?   Anyway, he cancelled on me the morning of our date saying he had an emergency conference call that evening.  OK...but he didn't bother to reschedule nor did he ever text / call again.  No problem.  He wasn't my 'type' anyway.  

A few days later I met up with a guy with a full beard/mustache that was slightly tinted red.  I am not a red-head fan...but he seemed a little interesting.  He recently became a teacher and had hobbies I hope to maybe start enjoying.   We meet for drinks.  Since he picked the place and parking was a 2 hour limit...he limited our date to under 2 hours because he was a few minutes late.  Conversation was interesting and he was fairly easy to talk to.  I had a few concerns, but it wasn't anything big.  I wrap up the date telling him I was meeting a few other people over the next week, then going away so I'd be in touch towards the end of the month via online site; I didn't give him my number.

I run home, relax, freshen up and head out for my next date.  This guy is at the top of my age range...but there was something about his picture that I liked.  Of all five guys, this was the only one where I initiated the online conversation.  We met at a Mexican place.  I arrived early so I grabbed a high top near the bar.  I tend to only commit to drinks...I don't want to be tied into a meal with someone I might not like (I learned that in my 20s).  After 90 minutes we ordered dinner.  After a slow dinner, we walked around the complex.  After we walked around, he helped me find my car.  I gave him my phone number and we made plans to see each other in two days.  Our second date we car pooled into the city and went to this street thing - not a festival, more like a relaxing game filled street party?  We had lunch, went for a beer someplace else and just walked around.  We drove back to my car and I find saying goodbye in a car to be so awkward.  I lean in for a hug slash half missed kiss and just got out of the car. I think he had a huge smile on his face, but I was embarrassed by our awkward goodbye.  The following day we made plans for 3 days later to have an appetizer and see a movie.  3 dates with the same guy in 6 days....

In between date number 2 & 3 for the guy above, I met someone else.  He seemed very 'normal' in his pictures.  I arrived on time/early to the bar, grabbed a seat and waited.  He showed up a few minutes late and looked around and then had a seat in the reception area....really?   Strike one.  I go over and get him and bring him back.  He ordered an iced-tea because he was on call.   No problem, aside from that fact he drank like 10 and probably had a pound of sugar with it.  Just like with date #1, conversation was fairly easy...he talked so much and barely asked me anything.  I learned about him loving being an old child growing up because he was so spoiled, that his best friend encouraged him to film porn, about a road trip he took with an ex-girlfriend, that his favorite food is spaghetti but most importantly, at 41, his current age, he just got his first 'real' job, that he loves.  OK, so he tried to start his own business and that lasted about 5 years...but before that....we are talking PetSmart, Pizza Hut, etc.  He JUST moved into his own apartment to be closer to work, but lived with his mother for a long time.  Can I judge? I mean, I moved home to pay off my credit card debt.  And salaries are lower than most I get it...but...I don't know.  Seemed something was off.   I knew within 10 minutes I didn't want to see him again...but I allowed conversation to keep going for 90 minutes.  I tried a few times to wrap it up, but he was a talker!  I pay our tab.  At the end he was like 'I never know what to do at the end of a date'.  I know, it is complicated.  I responded "I'll be honest.  This week I had several dates lined up to meet people..."  where he interjected with "I am not surprised"   What does that mean??   anyway....I continue, "we should just wrap this up and that is it."  We walked out together and I felt like he wanted I say, 'have a great night.  Drive safe" and walk to my car.  

That night, I check my profile and my possible date #5 was not available to meet my only free day that week; family in town.  So I explained that I won't be around until the end of the month...and if he was free and still interested we can think about getting together in a few weeks.  

So, it was an interesting first re-attempt at dating.  I am glad I booked a few dates in a week...not only did it give me something to do, but I am continually learning how to talk on dates.  I don't go into first dates nervous anymore...but if it gets to date #3 I start to panic.  I mean...this is where it has the potential to see yourself possibly in a relationship with the person.  All that down the line thinking freaks me out.  I get so nervous about the first kiss.  getting naked. having sex.  not knowing how much to share when they ask questions to avoid not lying but not saying everything.  judgement...will they like the food I cook/bake for them?  Does he snore?  Is he messy?  Could he be a good father.  Am I too big for him?  Such thoughts start creeping in and I try so hard to push them away and just be in the moment and see where it takes you...but I over think and over analyze.  

Friday, July 31, 2015

a year of savings

Before I moved I decided to purchase the AAA membership at $52, not for the roadside assistance since that came with my car, but because I knew I'd be traveling a lot and hoped the discounts would exceed what I purchased the membership for.

I also knew I wanted to see a lot this past year, and therefore I purchased the National Park Pass early into my trip knowing that in twelve months, it should pay for itself.

So, let's see if there was any savings from July 2014 - July 2015.

National Park Pass Purchase Price:  $80
  • Lincoln Boyhood Home  $3 me and $3 guest = $6
  • Badlands $15
  • Scotts Bluff NM $3
  • Rocky Mountain National Park $20 (aug)
  • Florissant Fossil Beds NM $3
  • Rocky Mountain National Park $20 (sept)
  • Maroon Bells $10
  • Rocky Mountain National Park $20 (jan) --> pass paid for itself +17 savings. Everything else is additional savings.
  • Colorado National Monument $10 (may)
  • Canyonlands National Park $10 (may)
  • Arches National Park $10 (may)
  • Great Sand Dunes $10 (july)
  • Mesa Verde $15  (july)
  • Rocky Mountain National Park $20  - my roommate (july)
Total National Park savings: $92.00

AAA discount Purchase Price: $52
  • Corvette Museum $4 (two people)
  • Hotel in Ohio (July) $10
  • Hotel in Kentucky (July) $10
  • Graceland Admission $6 (two people)
  • Hotel in Tennessee (July)  $5
  • Hotel in Kansas $13 (two nights)
  • Hotel in South Dakota (July) $5 ....already saved $1.  Everything else is additional savings.
  • Hotel in Nebraska (July) $15
  • Squirrel Cage Jail $1
  • Stanley Tour $6 (two people)
  • Campsite (May) $11.50
Total AAA savings: $34.50

AAA automatically renewed at the start of my end month, so I had to write a letter, explain I moved and mail back my card and hope they refund me $52.  

Total card savings:  $126.50.  I'd say it was well worth it!

Thursday, July 30, 2015

Hiking the Sand Dunes

The Great Sand Dunes National Park is pretty amazing.  I was there back in 2010 I think and went back this month with visiting family.

what you see as you approach the park
As we drove up, I was slightly disappointed, they looked so small from my memory.  But it is pretty nestled up against the mountains.

But I remembered how difficult it was walking up them, and how I wanted to go farther but we weren't prepared.  At that time, I didn't know about elevation sickness, and we did this the day after we arrived in Colorado.  We also only had one water bottle between the two of us.  So, I prepared a little more for this trip.  I told my family to start drinking water before they flew out, it was not on the itinerary until day 3 or that would help.  I also got a few extra camel backs.  Originally it was scheduled earlier in the day when the sun wasn't as strong...but it ended up being midday the day, I'd figure it out.

Medano Creek
We arrive at the park and the Medano Creek was wider than I thought.  Some family seemed annoyed with me that they had to cross this and didn't want to get their shoes wet.   Two went back to get flipflops...but how far can you walk in hot sand in flipflops?  The others crossed the creek in their sneakers no complaints, and a handful of smarties took off their shoes walked across and put them back on.  It was only about 1 - 3 inches deep in certain areas.

Probably doesn't look as steep as it was
The walk to the beginning of the sand dunes was a bit away from the parking lot.  A handful of my group did their thing at the closest dunes.  I left one water pack with them and the rest of us carried on.  It takes a while to walk across the sand...and which of the boys were pushing their limits and out challenging each other to climb not across the crests, but up vertical that took a while.  They climbed up....I ended up climbing horizontal to meet them...which I thought would be faster than hiking up the crests, which would have zigzagged back around and would have taken too long to the parched kids.

The highest dune in the park is Star Dune at 750 feet.  I'd say that my brother-in-law and a nephew made it to 725 feet to one of the peaks.   I probably made it 680 feet or so...but stayed behind with some of the other kids who were exhausted.

Then we headed back down.  Going down was easier than going up of course.  I wish I thought to bring/rent those sand boards because it looked fun...and cardboard didn't really work so well.  There is a restaurant/visitor shop right before the entrance that rents don't need to go as far as Alamosa first.

Our little sand hike took about 2 hours.  Our trip ended right before the afternoon rain.  I wish we got there earlier so we had more time...but it was another fabulous trip!  One I know the family will talk about for a while.

Wednesday, July 29, 2015

almost accidental mis-dial

Mountain Man's name is S.  I talk to him somewhat regularly...less now than before, but still a few times a month.  I think my phone automatically made him a favorite.

My brother-in-law's name is S.  I see him at family things and when I go over, but very rarely do I have a need to email or text him.  Holiday, party or fantasy football emails are about it.  When I was on a trip with my sister and her family a few weeks ago, I did need to text and call my brother-in-law S about an item in the store, location, whatever.

During the trip, there was an incident when I was composing a text to Mountain Man, where I did not respond to a text, but rather took a picture and then sent it to him.  But as I was typing in S....SI's name came up.  They are listed a little different, one by full name, one by nickname.  But I am SO glad I realized that before I hit send!  It was a great scenic picture....but you don't send a random person a picture for no reason!

And a day later when I was calling my brother-in-law about a grocery item, I selected SI.  I swear this never happened before, I don't think. I don't think I've ever accidentally called or texted him.  Again, thank goodness the call didn't start and I actually looked at my phone before hitting the green button...because most times I just put the phone to my ear without looking.

So I started to wonder, why is SI still in my phone?   Then I syncs my contacts.  So while I may have removed him from my phone the several times I got a different phone, he still ends up back there.  Do I remove him from my email contacts?  I don't know. I mean, sure, I have no need to talk to him, but I haven't deleted anyone in never know when you need to contact someone.  Do I still know his phone number?  Yeah, the phone number he had when we were together will forever be stuck in my head...just as my childhood phone number or my aunt's number is.  Maybe he doesn't even have it anymore and my almost accidental phone call and text wouldn't have been answered by a confused ex-boyfriend!

But what if he did answer?  What if he answered and I had no idea I called him.  Would he even believe that?  And most likely I would have been like"  him: "this is S." or "hello"  me: "so, they don't have strawberry flavored, what is your next choice" or "I am all done, pull around and I'll hop in"  or some other ridiculous in the moment conversation that would make no sense to someone I haven't talked to him years.   He'd call me out on calling the wrong S...and I'd be left a few thoughts behind, stumbling, sounding not only embarrassed but flaky.  Wrong impression. If I were to converse, it needs to be on my terms, when I have time to think, not be all confused!!

Maybe he would respond that I am a stalker and clearly not over him and I need to get a life.  I think some of that was our last conversation...but funny thing was he initiated contacting me!  Whatever happens, I doubt he'd be nice about it.  He had a bit of an egotistical problem way back when.

Anyway, mistakes happen.  I should end this post by going to my phone and removing him....just in case something like that happens again in the future.  

But two different kinds of incidents only a month apart...what is going on universe???

Saturday, July 25, 2015

driving up America's Mountain

In 2010 I took the Cog Railway up to Pikes Peak, so when I had family in town, I suggested the train ride because it was fun and you didn't have to make that 19 mile drive.  But when we arrived we were told a train derailed near the station and no further train would be running that day.  What to do? That was all we had planned.  

I sucked it up and decided we would drive up.  Driving saved us a bunch of money, only costing $40 but I was a little nervous to drive up America's Mountain.  I asked the toll gate lady about the drive and she said "there are guard rails where they are needed"that made me feel better and we began our ride.  

Our first stop was the big foot sign just after Mile Marker 3.  This sign was placed on the highway to mark the approximate location where a visitor spotted a Big Foot like creature in 2001.  I know that sounds crazy....a sign for one sighting?  But no, apparently there have been multiple sightings (read here).  Are you curious how to report a big foot sighting?  I know I was so I looked it up.  Go here.  
The drive continued through an aspen forest with little elevation gain, I was happy.  I thought, I got this no problem! But I knew I'd be going above the tree line soon enough.  We stopped at a dam (which would offer an even more beautiful view in the fall when the aspen's change) then continued up.  

Soon my sister in the back seat started to panic.  The road  started to get windy as it weaved up the switchbacks.  Where are those guard rails?  
where are the guard rails?????
When we crossed the tree line I told my passengers to keep their eye out for wildlife.  And sure enough we saw mountain goats.  One was even in the middle of the road (which is why we started looking around).

After a bit more, we finally reached the summit.  I was glad to have a break from driving!  While my passengers had things to tend to, my nephew & I went into the visitor center and got a few doughnuts hoping that would calm...or rather distract everyone else's bellies.  We took in the views from the "America the Beautiful" sign and then made our way to the Pikes Peak Summit sign for photos.

We only got a short time for viewing the scenery before the clouds moved in.  They kept rising and soon it even started to hail.

After spending about 40 minutes in the visitor center looking around and standing in a line, which took forever, we headed back to the car.  I was dreading the ride back down.  I put the car in low gear, and I knew better enough to ride the brakes the whole time, but there are signs posted for those that don't know that.  It was still a little scary driving down, but it wasn't as bad as I thought, and I actually enjoyed the view a lot more, maybe because I knew what to expect.

 When we got back home, my family presented me with a certificate that I made it to the summit for driving up there.  In a way I am glad we couldn't take the train and I drove up.  I have been very curious about driving some of these mountains after driving through Rocky Mountain NP a few times.  Next up is driving up Mt. Evans, which is the highest paved road in North America.

Thursday, July 9, 2015

work accomplishments, finally

I've been at my job about five and a half months.  It has been a long, fast, and overwhelming 5 months.  The office was so outdated, with way too much paper, antiquated systems, and just overall needed a huge makeover.  I still remember my first day when I wanted to cry looking around at how much work this was going to be.   How long would it take?  Would I quit before I finish some of the projects?

Finally, this past two weeks, I had my first accomplishment, our organization was approved to be included in this other organization for fundraising purposes.  They attempted to get approval a few years ago, but it was a lot of work.  It took 2 months before I was able to submit our application, and then another 3 weeks to revise it before final approval.  One huge thing off my to-do list.  Now I need to focus on getting it out there and hope that people will donate.

My second accomplishment was three months in the making, a new website.  I didn't want to tell people where I worked because they would google it and it could come up and I'd be embarrassed.  It was that bad.  The website was atrocious.  It was probably the original website.  The lady before me hated to throw anything away, and the website was no different, our events page was filled with events that took place like 8 years ago.  At one point she highlighted, in many different colors, the days and times of events.  It was such an eyesore. Instead of just fixing the pages, we decided it would be better to start fresh.  And, with everything going digital the website needed to be mobile friendly too.  Sadly, we don't have a lot of money, they didn't want to pay anyone and they just assumed I would do it even though I told them over and over again I am not a web developer.  You know how long it would take me to learn how to do that? And that would suck up so much of my time.  I was expressing my concern and a friend suggested some of those cheap drag & drop websites.  OK, sure, it isn't ideal for our organization, but I was going to make it work.  I told the relevant work people to send me their updates...but no one ever did.  There was no committee.  There was no help.  It was frustrating, but I did it.  And while it isn't the nicest most professional website, at least it is an improvement over the old website.  And it is much easier for me to update, which is important.

After creating a color scheme (that was based on my shower curtain colors), I created a new newsletter design.  The previous newsletters were standard Publisher templates and they just switched up the color themes for each edition.  I went through them and they didn't change the format for 10 years, I figured it was time.   I took the initiative and started to redo it and figured I'd send it for approval after they saw what an improvement it was instead of being wishy washy having too many opinions.  I still using publisher, but I've reorganized the layout and I told our newsletter editor that we don't need articles that take up a whole sheet of paper.  Sometimes shorter is better, or a mix. We are way late in getting the newsletter out, but once it does, it will have the same colors as the website, hopefully this will help.  Maybe no one will ever notice.

On the almost finished list is cleaning/rearranging the offices.  Our space is not ideal for us, but I have to make do with what we have right now.  This will take a while longer, but I actually feel like progress was made.  For it to get where it is at today, I had to go through about 30 boxes of papers, keep or get rid of, and then figure out how to refile.  I still have more boxes to go through, it seems never ending.  We have so much paper.  We have all these things we needed....but in paper form so I decided we are going to start scanning everything, that would free up three huge filing cabinets.   The scanning process is extremely slow, it  might take us a year...but then we'll just have to reorganize the room again.  Here are some before and afters....
File Room Before
File Room After
Bathroom Before & After
Storage Closet Before & After
My office and the other office still need that those pictures will come at a later date.

So, what's still on the list?
  • we have two storage cages in the basement that needs to be gone through.  There are papers that need to be filed or tossed.  Many need to be kept, but they need to be organized.   
  • we have about 80 boxes of books that we are not using in our those will either be tossed, donated or sold.  If they are to be sold, I will create a 'bookstore' on the new website and hopefully reach other people outside our area.  This will take longer than I'd like it to because I am relying on other people to go through all these books - and they claim they don't have a lot of free time.
  • creation of policies and a policy manual...I started drafts of a few, but really the Board needs to review/approve them, that can take a long time.  More challenging...I need to do this for two organizations, not just one.
  • Fundraising.  This is an area I don't have any experience in....but it is something we really need.  One step was accomplished by setting up the account that I spoke about above, but that isn't enough, we really need to get the name out there a little more.
  • Quickbooks needs a bit of fixing. I started to fix line items and reclassify the chart of accounts, but it still needs a bit of work.   Our fiscal year just started, so, I'd like to get this done soon, or work on it throughout the year so it makes more sense.   Again, I have to do this for two or three organizations.
  • And of course there are the smaller projects.

Saturday, July 4, 2015

I want to find love too

so let's see....Doofy got married last month.  Old Man went to Antigua with an official girlfriend last month.  Last year Greasy/Skeevy got married and had a baby.  I think Mountain Man is dating someone, although he hasn't said so but he talks to me a lot less frequently and doesn't respond as quickly to emails and texts.

Me?  I am still single.  I barely dated.

I am starting to wonder that maybe having a boyfriend or a husband just isn't my thing.   I can't get married if I don't date.  And I don't have luck with anyone wanting to date me that I might be interested in.

The two guys I attempted dates with this year were either secretly gay or a massive farter with slight fangs.

I just read this an article this morning about a man in the middle east who didn't shower for 60 years who is looking for his soul mate.   If he finds love before me....I really have a problem.  I shower.  I'm not 80 yet.  I don't smoke animal poop, or anything else for that matter.

What will this mean for my future?   I suppose I should really start looking for a bigger place to live first.  Well, no, I guess i need to decide if I want to stay in Colorado or not.  Once I have a place that has more bedrooms, I should really start taking the classes to get certified in foster care or maybe skip that and go straight to adoption.

While I don't mind living alone, I feel like my life will be very unfulfilled if I don't share it with someone.  All this time I was thinking I wanted to share it with a person of a similar age, a companion....but maybe looking after someone is what I need.  You know I love trying to help people, and there are so many kids that don't have anyone that need help.  BUT, as a friend recently pointed out to me that I get attached and give all my love and it would crush me if the foster kid goes back to their family.  So, I keep wondering, maybe temporary isn't for me.

Whatever happens in my future, I feel like I am always way behind everyone else.  Not that it is a competition.  Do I have unconscious issues that I need psychoanalysis for?  Did I mess up a past life and the one thing I want in this life I can't have?

I wish them all well of course, but I won't lie - I am a bit jealous, I want to find love too.

Monday, June 29, 2015

no happier

I moved because I wasn't happy in New York.  It was very stressful living alone, working with a lower salary, paying student loans, the commute, the lack of good friends, the dark dreariness of fall & winter.  I hoped that Colorado would bring some happiness back into my life.

But I am the same person.  I didn't change just because I moved.  I still have a hard time meeting people, so I don't really have friends, I am still living this extremely solo independent life.  I am still at a job that pays less than it should, so my financial situation hasn't really improved.  I am still paying off my student loans, but now I also have a car payment.  My current commute sucks, I wonder how did I complain about taking a train to work when I sit in traffic in the car which is worse in my opinion. I have a roommate.  The sun...the sun is an area of improvement.  I love it.  And when it is cloudy or overcast for the whole day, I feel it.

Was this all worth it?? I am at the same happiness level I think.  But it has been good for me because I don't have anyone I can rely on here and that is a bit of a test.  I had space to think. I had space to mourn. I had time to cry.  I have so much free time that I am wasting because I am either tired of doing things alone or don't have the finances to do it, or don't know where to go.

I've met a few people who also moved out here, and they adjusted much better than I have.  They made friends, they keep busier, they met guys or are dating.

Maybe that just isn't the life I am destined to have.