I’ve added a lot of new garden links to my blog this year. It has been informative and inspiring.

Because of them I’ve joined a local cactus and succulent group. Gone to plant shows and sales. It’s wonderful when you find your own brand of nerd.

Now, following a link from one blog to another blog I have found a new obsession. I’ve been a fan of the Arts and Crafts movement for a long time, and I really like Frances Gearhart’s work. Now the trick is to find a piece that I can afford.


I’ve been blogging for a long time. Ever since I found Diaryland in my endless wanderings around the web. It was fun. I could look at the source code and figured out how to do useless stuff like make it snow on your page or have your cursor expand and contract like a slinky. I enjoyed it enough that I’ve kept on reading and writing since about

I’ve watched the evolution of a lot of blogs. They come and they go. I’ve always figured that people blog for their own reasons. They don’t owe anything to anyone. They can start or stop whenever they want. I do admit that I’ve really missed some of them when they stop for a while. I’m persistent, though, and keep checking back. Once in a while I’m rewarded and they start blogging again.

Sometimes blogs end because the owner pssed away. Sometimes they just stop and sometimes you’re left guessing.

In the age of Facebook I can see why most don’t blog. But I’ve always preferred the long version. So I’ll keep reading. And as long as I’m here, writing.


I feel like I’m overflowing with words right now.  So much has gone on in the last 12 months

Part of it is who I am, but more of it is when I am.  I’m 53 and my family members are starting die on me.  More and more as time goes on.

My family is changing now and I see how ephemeral we all are.  If we want to leave some mark on this world, we have to do it now. 

Pick something to do and do it.  There is no time for equivocation. 

Pick  a path and run down it ast fast and as well as you can.

Don’t wait.  Finding your direction only gets harder as your get older.

Harder to bear

I find that Christmas is getting harder to bear the closer I get to the day.

And it’s not the memories that make me sad. The memories make me happy. Listening to the old Christmas songs make me feel more connected to Dad Thinking of the Mission Inn reminds me of my Mom-in-Law. I never thought I’d think of anyone as any other kind of Mom except my Mom. I’ve learned differently.

I miss them. The nearer the holiday gets, the more I miss them. Their contributions to my life.

I almost lost it today in the soldering class I took for making jewelry. Not because of any one thing. Because of everything. Because of Dad. Because of Mom-in-Law. Because of what’s going on with my Mom. Because of the way these losses affect both me and Wonderful Spouse. Because of the time I’m spending driving back and forth. Because of the almost 10 months this has been going on.

I’m tired. My patience is over. If I was a better person, it wouldn’t be. But I’m not and it is.

The things that hit me the hardest continue to surprise me. I think I’m doing well. Then I think of my most recent favorite Christmas song “White Wine in the Sun.” My feelings about Christmas are complex, and the song expresses most of them, in their basic form. Religion isn’t important to me. Presents aren’t important to me. The part of Christmas that’s important to me is being with family.

And I have less family this year. A lot less.

I so miss them.


Going through this process, or whatever part of the process it is that I am going through now, has been interesting. Thank the fates I have the family that I have. Getting through this would have been damn near impossible.

I don’t know how Mom did what she did. Twice a day, every day, to the hospital. I didn’t go anything like that often and it was exhausting. I almost feel human today. It’s still hard and emotionally draining, but nothing like the roller coaster of ‘he’s good this morning, he’s bad this afternoon or he’s having a rational conversation or he’s moaning in pain.’ Like I said, I don’t know how Mom did it.
Been texting with youngest sister about a couple of funeral details and talking about that. I’m old enough to see my parents as people, at least somewhat. I still admire them. I’ve known them for more than fifty years. Not from a neutral viewpoint, to be sure, but for a damn long time. The more I see of them and know of their lives, so different from my own, the more I admire them.

It has been nice texting my sisters, talking to Mom every day. Knowing that my family is going through the same thing I am. Everyone from their own viewpoint, comparing thoughts and experiences. I’ve read that that is how bonds between people are made, shared experiences.

It’s weird to go through this. The fabric of this family has been torn mightily, but going through it together as a family is knitting the fabric anew. The fabric will never be the same. It’s going to be a whole different shape. But it’s still there.


Still my family.

Still my Mom, Still my husband and both of my sisters.

Still, my family. *sigh* Still a Dad-sized hole my world.

My immediate surroundings have been touched, though not directly changed. The sun still falls through the windows the same way, the garden still smells fresh and green, but that picture, on our bookshelf, that man is no longer here. My husband, my home, my pets, they are still here. Our garden is still my sanctuary. I still have this. Maybe I have been selfish. Hell, I know I have been selfish. But my husband and my home let me do what I do. None of which I find easy.

I see, every time I leave her, that my Mom is alone now. And as much as I want to be there all the time, I can’t. I need my evenings in the yard. Sanctuary! Sanctuary!

Things have changed. My Dad is no longer here. It’s a damn big Frank-sized hole. Mom feels that empty space so much more than we do. Do I tell that I feel that space too? Their home is so much different now.
Someplace for so many years was Mom and Dad.