Midget toilet

Sunshine bought us a toilet, and Rude Ass is installing it.

I’m pretty sure it was designed for midgets, since my knees are almost touching my ears.

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Community jam session

Last night, Sunshine grilled some venison burgers and almost everybody here showed up at our place for dinner. Rude Ass brought his guitar, and next thing you know, Mr B had picked up Sunshine’s flute and he and Rude Ass started playing some songs.

After Mr B headed home, Sunshine picked up the flute and he and Rude Ass played a while.

This is why we decided to make this change.

This is what it’s about for us: simple pleasures, friends, connections, community. Last night, all was as it should be in my world.

Organized Chaos

I’ve got so much on my plate lately that I’ve been triple booking myself. Seriously, I actually scheduled 3 appointments with different healthcare offices on the same day at almost the same time, leaving myself with a bunch of conflicts and a missed appointment.

The situation is only getting worse. I’ve now got even more appointments with even more organizations/agencies, with even more coming up in the near future. My boss is starting to get understandably frustrated with the notices that I can’t work on day X because of this or that important healthcare thing that must be dealt with. I also need to get some dental work started, but don’t know that I’m up to adding anything else to my plate right now, even without factoring in the job issue.

All of this whining about medical issues ignores the reality that this isn’t the only overwhelming thing I’m dealing with. We just moved into the new house, which is a construction zone with no functioning toilet (leaving me having to hike up the hill to the magic bus whenever I gotta go poop).

So a few days ago, after an appointment in a nearby large town, I went shopping and got myself a planner. It didn’t cost much, and hopefully it will help me stay a bit more organized. It might not be an expensive planner with all of the fancy features, but I think its appropriate for this moment in my life.

Now, if I could just train myself to actually USE it…

The Purge

Once again, Chrissy has called me on my shit with her post about possessions and emotions. While she almost certainly wrote the post about and for herself, the nature of addiction is that I can make such a post be all about me, so here we are. Thank you, Chrissy, for being such an inspiration to me this morning, I needed it and I love you for it.

In spite of the fact that I have made 3 trips to the donation drop-off and trashed a lot of unnecessary paperwork and other garbage, I still haven’t gotten totally honest and ragingly brutal with some areas of my home. Like clothes, shoes, accessories, and craft supplies. After reading Chrissy’s post, I put on my big girl panties and waded into the closet. There were a number of casualties.

5 tops. All of them are things I won’t wear, yet I refused to get rid of them because of the name on the label. Who cares if it’s a Cavalli or Tory Burch if I’m not fucking wearing it? Like, seriously, what’s the point in that?

2 pairs of pants. White pants. Because what the fuck was I even thinking bringing white pants into my world? Do we really think I can keep white pants white for more than .25 nanoseconds?

An olive green linen knit blazer. That wouldn’t button. Did I mention that it’s green? I won’t wear green near my face, because it does my complexion no favors.

A black leather mid-thigh length jacket. Buttery soft. When I get honest with myself, I have to admit that I won’t wear it. This is Texas, where winter lasts about 5 weeks and wouldn’t even be considered chilly by some folks up north.

One pair of cute point toe boots with a block heel. Do I really need four fucking pairs of brown boots? No. These particular boots made my feet look triple-wide, and kept me from wearing other brown boots that I like much better.

2 pairs of brown mules. Who am I kidding? Mules aggravate my sciatica. I’m not going to wear them.

One pair of black sandals. Comfortable as fuck, but I won’t wear them because I have another pair of black sandals I like better.

I was actually able to get rid of an entire shoe rack and add it to the donate pile. I moved some shoes from the “these are nice shoes” category in my head; those pairs now reside in the “I’m not attached to them, which makes them perfect summer work shoes” category.

I also got rid of some costume jewelry pieces, and moved some clothes from the active section of my closet into the “holding zone”. If I don’t lose enough weight to fit into them within the next year, they have to go.

I can honestly say that I’m a bit ashamed of myself. I can also say that I’m not going to let it eat my lunch. If I get really, totally, brutally honest with myself, well…

Yes. The shoes and clothes are another fix. What can I say? I’m an addict. Addicts fix.

However, I find that there are far less negative consequences of this fix than of my old ones. And I’ve got too much on my plate (medical issues, mental health issues, moving into a construction zone, etcetera) to think I am in the kind of spiritual condition required to eliminate the fix from my life right now. Better to fix on clothes and shoes than to fix on dope.

Many of us have a tendency to weave complex webs of rationalization. Yes, I’m weaving a web right now. I’ll worry about that with my sponsor, because I certainly can’t stop the process by myself.

Final note: yes, Patricia, I still like my money where I can see it😁 These aren’t going anywhere.

Meet the Flintstones: Mr B

Sunshine and Mr B have been friends since they were both just kids, back in 1982 or 83. I dont know how on earth they’ve put up with each other for so long, as they are both madly irritating people with oversized personalities. I pick on them a lot, mostly because they’re not here to defend themselves; really, they’re both great people to know and love, and I’m grateful to have them both as part of my life.

Mr B is quite the character. In his life, he has lived so many lifetimes that it’s hard to keep track of all of his incarnations. He’s been in the military, a paint contractor, an evaporative solar cooling system installer, a pilot, a mortician, a caterer, a stone restorer (the guy who fixes those annoying chips and cracks in the marble in hotel lobby floors and residential countertops and shit), and I forget what the hell else he’s done. He’s a well traveled, well read, intelligent, adventurous individual with a generous spirit and a maddening tendency to change the battle strategy mid-skirmish. He’s definitely Cajun, although he has lost whatever Louisiana drawl he might have once had since he’s been living in Texas for so very long.

He’s a really really really good cook, and has worked up some amazing recipes with some of my jam-making failures. He used some of the vanilla cantaloupe jam that didn’t set; and he has created variations on coleslaw, different desserts, and so on.

Side note: I do not like coleslaw, because mayonnaise; but I’ve tried what he’s come up with with vanilla cantaloupe & mango and actually really liked it.

Mr B’s ADHD does get the best of all of us sometimes, so I had to spread the interview out into easily digestible bites over our morning coffee ritual and evening chats with Sunshine. What follows is a peek into Mr B’s mind; I hope you enjoy getting to know him a bit better. I have pretty much limited myself to the questions you guys came up with, but will gladly ask him any follow up questions you may have.

LA wants to know what you think of your nickname:

Mr B responded by saying that it was apparently how I experienced him.

In the interest of fairness and accuracy in reporting, I did feel it necessary to inform him that we had given him a couple of other nicknames here in the middle of buttfuck nowhere: D the Destroyer, and Demolition D. His reaction to those nicknames is classic Mr B (and definitely why I just gotta love him): “if you’re going to make a cake, you have to break a few eggs. Hopefully, I won’t burn the cake.”

Manuela wanted to know how he got so handy; was it self taught, or was there an influential person he learned from.

Mr B’s answer was: “I’m just a quick study. If it takes me too long, I don’t do it.” Which is likely his way of saying that his ADHD gets the best of him too, sometimes.

Patty wanted to know what made him want to take on this particular adventure.

Mr B said that he realized his dad was right; never play another man’s game. This society is bottom up instead of top down, so it seemed like a good idea to join with others in an experiment that creates opportunity to do something outside the box.

Sam wanted to know “what will you do when all this is finished?”

Mr B’s response was short, sweet, and straight to the point: start another one. Because of course that’s what he would do (remember how I keep mentioning his ADHD?)

Benjamin asks: “what is life like with Cynthia?”

He stopped me mid-interview to ask for my phone. He then took a picture of me and told me that it was his answer.

When I looked at him with a puzzled expression on my face, he said to focus on what’s on the teevee screen (a fuckton of videos about women who committed murder, and one lonely video about yoga for the heart chakra)

Now, time for some pics:

He really does love him some tractors

That time he killed a predator cat on the back half of the property.

That time he rented a scissor lift for some random reason, and drove it around the property to give me a bird’s eye view

That time he spent Christmas Day breaking ground on our little house

Now, I’m going to take Benjamin’s question and flip it around: what’s it like living with Mr B?

Well, one day while I was at work, I was trying to figure out what to do about my flat tire because I had no clue where to locate my spare. I started texting everyone asking for help. What I got back? Quintessential Mr B.

I have no words

This is usually my response when Sunshine says something ridiculous, like the time he told me he was hungry so he needed to find something he could put in his mouth. Lately, though, I’ve been having trouble coming up with posts; I feel as if everything I want to say to y’all is either irrelevant or silly or whatever. Never mind that you guys generally seem to get big laughs out of my ridiculous drivel; I still haven’t been able to figure out what to write about.

I’m quite certain that the state of my home is part of the problem. I want to post about our little house, but IT ISN’T FINISHED so it’s hard to want to give you a tour. I’m also dealing with a lot of medical bureaucracy, trying to get some health problems sorted; the paperwork process has me so frustrated that I have moments when I’m ready to give up and live the rest of my life with the problem.

Side note: I’ve gotten more forgetful lately, too. I’ve straight forgotten my morning meds twice in one week, and I actually FORGOT WHERE I HID ONE OF OUR WEAPONS. (It took some frantic scrambling & searching, and having Mr B walk in the house to remind me that I had actually done the right thing and hidden it in the gun safe behind some other things, so thank heaven my default hardwired program was written to ensure gun safety.)

I’ve been purging clothes and shoes and other random things as I’ve settled into the new house. I’m kind of ashamed of all the trips to the local charity shop to drop off donations, and I’m also wondering how the hell I fit so much shit into an RV without it looking like an episode of “hoarders: buried alive” in there. There have been 3 trips to drop off donations, and countless contractor cleanup bags full of trash like year old pickles that Sunshine swears he’s eating but the jars never get emptier.

Side note: I even threw away some sneakers hot nuclear trash that gave me a blister on my pinkie toe–on the inside, next to the adjacent toe. How the fuck does a shoe cause a blister there, FFS?

I’ve got a bunch of notes and mental images to write a “Meet the Flintstones” post about Mr B, and I haven’t been able to wrap my mind around it yet.

Rather than leave you with nothing but my navel gazing drivel, I’m going to include some pics of my view this morning (and a vow to fix my toenail polish, please overlook the chips).

I’ll be glad when the house is finished enough to allow me to give you a little tour. Until then, please enjoy my recent obsession with balloon animal dogs.

When did things get so quiet?

I am astounded by how quiet my new home is. The 2′ thick insulation in our exterior walls certainly contributes to the quiet in this house, but it doesn’t account for it all.

Side note: I already miss the sound of rain on the roof. It was a very noticeable sound in the magic bus, yet the ceiling is so well insulated here that it has to be a really heavy downpour to catch my attention now.

I’m also still not hearing much of anything on my right side. The quiet in this home is much more than that, though.

The window unit air conditioner Rude Ass installed for us is really really quiet. The fart fan in the bathroom is effective without making much noise at all. The fridge doesn’t hum like the one in the RV; the only sound we get from it most of the time is ice cubes clattering down into the bin. The clothes washer makes more noise when it swings to me as I press buttons than it does while its actually washing clothes. The tankless hot water heater makes some noise, but only when something is needing hot water and even then it’s fairly quiet. I hadn’t given this much thought until I started my new dishwasher for the first time ever

and could barely hear the damn thing running.

Side note: it’s weird to have a full size dishwasher after several years of that mini dishwasher in the magic bus. I actually have room in the dishwasher for full-sized plates plus food storage containers plus coffee mugs plus dishes plus flatware… you get the picture.

I’m enjoying the quiet. The RV was noisy, and Sunshine is noisy, and Mollie is often very noisy. This week, with Sunshine out of town has been almost preternaturally quiet and it all seems surreal.

All of this quiet and all of this space have gotten me to thinking. All those cramped years in the RV really helped me learn what is truly important to me and what I can live without. I’ve come to see a clothes washer and a full sized dishwasher and a 5-burner stove as luxury items. Who needs Swarovski-encrusted cabinet pulls when simply having a full-sized dishwasher feels luxurious? Who needs a “Sex & The City” style shoe closet when simply having all one’s clothing & shoes in one central location is the most amazing feeling ever after 6 years of digging through at least 4 separate compartments to get dressed?

My mom saw some pictures of the interior of our house and asked why we didn’t make it bigger. As soon as the words had escaped her mouth, she realized how silly that sounded to someone who had just spent 6 years of her life in slightly less that 250 square feet of RV. We had a good laugh over it, and she just listened to me ramble on about how much SPACE I had now(and how Sunshine is probably going to try and fill every cubic centimeter of it with gack).

I don’t know where I’m going with this, I just know I feel very serene and grateful in this moment, and wanted to share it with you, my dear readers who manage to find ways to comment on my navel-gazing drool-inducing drivel. Thank you for being part of my journey!

Final note: Rude Ass change my name in the contact information in his phone today, and made me text him this morning so he could hear his phone announcing “message from Change Order”. I feel honored to have earned a permanent nickname by adding a cabinet over the refrigerator (to prevent dust from collecting up there).

Now, I just have to figure out what to store in it. We’ve already decided we’re ok with filling the island cabinets with toilet paper and shoes, maybe I should move my canning pots out of the pink house laundry room?