2018 Here I Come

How is this year going to be different from all the previous ones so far?

I will make debt repayment automatic and concentrate on abundance instead. I have the capability to earn plenty of money and I can afford the things I need and want. My bills will be easily paid and my income will increase quickly.

I will be publishing my book and others will find happiness because of what I’ve written. Because of what I have already written, others will learn how they too can attain their freedom.

My children and I will be closer. We will have time together that will be precious and fun. They will love their learning and love their new home. I will be there for them and, now that I am graduated and working, I also provide well for them. Together we are learning how to make money grow and work for us more. Now money comes easily and frequently and we begin to wonder at the benefits of having time and money to play.

I can afford it. I have abundance. I have the ability now to share my income with others in need. Finally, I am able to pay forward what others have done for me.

We all remain healthy and happy. Our lifestyle now reflects the abundance of energy that we all have. We are active and helpful in our community and because of this we are developing incredible friendships. All of us are experiencing a life we never dreamed possible a short five years ago.

These are just some of the things this year will bring me. My house will be repaired, my boat will be improved. My body will gain strength and my heart will stay strong. I am writing this now so that the world may know that I am here. I am ready for this time, I am ready to excel, to have increase. I am ready to show love and abundance to all around me. I am ready.

thank you for reading,

me

 

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Morning Thoughts…

Almost Christmas… My tree is small, my bank account is empty, and I can see the back of my cupboard and freezer… money will come soon but it’s definitely tight right now. I wonder why I put myself here and realize I really didn’t. Life has been difficult for the past several years. The ex has been slow on everything. When I moved out he refused to pay child support (and the mortgage) for three months, so credit cards went crazy high… Then with the kids relying on me for everything (and my inability to say no yet) what money I did have went to them and their lives… No one knew how tight things were and no one understood why I would say no sometimes. I can’t blame them, though. I didn’t tell anyone I was out of money. I didn’t tell anyone that I couldn’t afford to pay for their gas, or their dining out… I paid for the wedding that wasn’t meant to be and now I am stuck with more bills than I can pay.

Now what? I wait. I wait for more student loans to come in, I wait for graduation, and I wait for a job. I remind myself that this time is limited. One day, one day soon, I will be able to pay all of my bills. I will be able to say yes to my kids without worrying. I will be able to live my life on my terms. I look forward to those days.

In the meantime? I still live. I make the most of what we do have. I remember we are extremely well off. We have a roof over our heads, heat, clothes, cars and pets. We are all in good health and are happy. Sure, it would be nice to be able to answer the phone (the bill collectors are beginning to get angry). It would be nice to go out to eat whenever we want. It sure would have been nice to have a big tree this Christmas. My younger two kids just couldn’t quite understand why we had to stay small. That was hard. But, we are all learning. We are learning that things are just things and that it’s OK to eat leftovers and to eat at home. We are learning that the house looks better when we stay home.

I could get upset, and sometimes I do. But I remind myself of the good things and that this life is mine. I remind myself that I don’t mind going home any longer. I remind myself that I have made it the sanctuary that I had only dreamed of. I remind myself that our lives are so much better, happier, safer, than they were a short three years ago. Yes, being broke is hard, annoying, especially around Christmas; but it’s worth it.

thank you for reading,

me

Fighting Nature

Yesterday it was sunny and in the 60s in December in North Carolina. I love NC with its ever-changing weather. They say here that if you don’t like the weather today then check back next week because it will surely be different. Today the weather is rainy and in the 50s, I love it. Tomorrow will be cooler more and then by Christmas Eve we will be back up to pushing 70.

I knew the weather would be changing so I took my younger two to the boat yesterday. We drove the two hours without much fuss and then on the boat, just the three of us. I motored out of the marina and onto the Pamlico until we found some open space deep enough to set the sail. There’s just something to setting the sail and turning off the engine that is difficult to explain. The peace? The power? The quiet? When the wind fills up the sail and the boat slides through the water I know that life is going to be okay.

Maybe it’s the rules of nature? Maybe that’s the reason I love being near the water? When the rest of the world is in chaos, nature is firm, solid. Nature never fails to do what she wants to do. She brings her storms and her winds; her rain and her sun. She brings these and we must submit to them, work around them. Nature is a guarantee of things to come. You can count on her changing her mind and on her making her rounds.

The sun will rise and set again. The winds will come and leave. The rains will fall and the rivers will fill. Nature. Nature will change her course with the seasons but she will always continue. As humans we can either fight her or welcome her and that can make such a difference. In the boat when I face up wind I have very little hope of sailing, yet when I turn and face downwind I can sail as far as the water allows.There is a constant bargaining with her as I attempt to arrive at my destination. Nature is always true to herself, she knows who she is.

Back in the city, however, there is the chaos. The constant fighting of nature and never allowing her to be: the coats and umbrellas, the cars and the horns, the noise of the people, the lights and decorations. People have always fought Nature like no other being on the planet. That, I think, is what sets us apart so much. Without fighting Nature, there would be no libraries, no hospitals, no towns. Fighting her has its place. Harnessing her, though? That has power. Harness the wind and I can sail. Others harness the wind for electricity. How many ways do we harness energy from her? wind, water, sun, coal, oil, fire… Without her we are nothing. We cannot even eat without bargaining with her.

When I leave the chaos and join Nature in her fury, I feel her power and I am comforted. I know that despite everything, she will continue her patterns. She will continue well beyond anything I ever do. When people leave her alone, she will turn their creations back to dust. Nature. When we die we will be turned back to dust as well. She is a reminder to me that the chaos is limited. No matter what others say or do, they are limited. I am renewed having emersed myself in her, ready to live another day in the chaos.

thank you for reading,

me

Morning Coffee

I awoke quietly from my slumber this morning. It was as if there was a slowly increasing awareness of daylight. I was comfortable and warm lying there in my bed. I had nowhere to go and no reason to get up. No one else has claim upon my day today. If I wanted I could stay in bed forever. Instead, my body rolls over and snuggles the dogs a few more minutes. I lie there enjoying the warmth and the companionship. Why should I get up this morning? No reason, but I do. I’m not upset, not excited, I’m just here being me. I let the dogs outside and I start a cup of coffee. It’s about seven in the morning, a little later than normal but just fine.

My coffee is in my favorite mug. I went to the fair last year and carefully touched and held several different hand-made mugs until I found the one that felt just right. It has a lovely little bump where my thumb lies and it feels good in my hand. It’s not too big and not too small. I may never drink from another mug in my life, I like this one so much.

It may not look like much but this is my favorite mug. (Just finished my coffee, so it’s empty.)

I sat down in my chair and sipped on my coffee thinking about my day and just letting myself decide what I want to do. Today I could have gone to little Washington and looked around some; and I could have gone and cleaned up some on my boat as well. But instead I’ve decided to stay home with the kids. Christmas break is just beginning for them and the time is already flying by. I’m happy with my decision to stay home.

Life can throw so many curve balls that it can be hard, sometimes, to figure out which way is up. I love living life fully, even if that means a day goes by where I don’t actually do anything. That’s part of living. Living has ups and downs, hard balls and easy tosses. Life is about accepting each day with all of its roller coaster rides. It’s about accepting that sometimes there’s wind blowing into your sails and sometimes the waters are flat. None of it is ‘wrong’ it’s just part of living.

The hard part is recognizing that life is supposed to be with all of these extremes. Life is meant to be lived with ups and downs. I grow when I face the struggles, and I rest and heal on days like today. It’s about taking care of myself and knowing that it’s okay to do so. It’s simple, not easy, accepting life for what it is.

thank you for reading,

me

Tension?

Tension. I woke up this morning anxious. It’s 7 am and still kind of dark outside. I’m not sleepy but I wish I could stay in my bed where it’s warm, my house feels cold. I always turn the heat down at night and then put it back up in the morning so I did that already. What do I have to be anxious about? The ex has court this morning because he hasn’t paid his share of the property settlement. I’m sure he’ll get off scott free but I hope not. He has a way of almost getting in trouble and then getting more time or just getting a slap on the wrist… it’s frustrating and I try to forget about it since I can’t really do anything… but it’s frustrating.

Yesterday the kids and I went to go find a Christmas tree. We soon discovered that most of them are sold out or dead. The rest? Expensive. Seventy to a hundred dollars for a tree too big for our place. The younger kids started complaining about this being the ‘worst Christmas ever’ and I just wanted to cry because I was having a hard time finding a decent tree that wasn’t too small or dead and that I could afford… Christmas has been the most difficult for the kids to adjust to. Their dad just isn’t very celebratory and I’m broke. We did find a cute little one for forty-five dollars, but it is by far the littlest tree my kids have ever had and they’re disappointed. I tried. I forced myself to stay positive and to keep encouraging them as we decorated the tree and then put lights on outside. My youngest lit a fire in the fireplace and that helped a lot. We ate a good dinner and then watched a Christmas movie as well. All in all, the day turned out well but the moods never really changed. The holidays are the hardest to be positive when the kids are the ones who suffer. It’s not their fault their parents aren’t together any longer and it’s not their fault their father is no use.

As a mom, I want to fix everything. I want them all to have smooth sailing and never an upset day. I don’t want them to struggle through anything and I want to be able to buy them whatever they could possibly want. Yeah, I know, not my job to give them everything. It’s my job to help them grow into great people and to love them unconditionally. I do love them but it’s hard to watch them struggle. It’s also hard to allow them to see me struggle. I can’t really help it though and we’ll all be better off and stronger for our struggles. That’s the way we grow.

Life is supposed to be filled with good days and bad days. We aren’t supposed to have all good days. If we did, how would we know they were good with nothing to compare? How would we grow if we never had to work for it? How would our lives get better if we didn’t know how to handle the difficult stuff? I look back at my life over the last several years and I see how amazing it currently is. I’ve come this far because I have been willing to struggle through it and there’s no way I’d ever go back to who I used to be. The struggles are all worth it.

thanks for reading,

me

Bringing my boat home – 3rd leg and home

It’s home, at the dock as I type. My boat, my dream, resting well in her new home. She’s had to put up with me learning along the way but she survived and so did I. We’ve gotten to know each other better over the last couple of weeks. This last leg was from the beginning of the Albemarle Sound down the Alligator River over to Pamlico and finally Little Washington. She’s stubborn and prefers to be with plenty of wind. Her engine is electric and has an attitude of its own as well.

If she’s not fully charged she’ll let you think you’re OK until she decides you’re not. Then she just slows down, creeping forward, eternally slower and slower… you begin to notice the land isn’t moving next to you and that you’re giving her all she’s got… The ICW requires motor power unless the wind is absolutely perfect, which it wasn’t. It’s beautiful for sure, but, without a way to recharge my engine it begins to look very, very long. I can see the last bridge in the distance. I know that afterward I’ll have a chance of more wind but alas, I stare at the bridge for over an hour, it never gets closer. Such a lovely bridge, less than a couple of miles away. I could have probably swam that distance faster than my boat was going. Sigh. No wind, darkening skies, engine slowing and now not even moving forward…

I can see the bridge in the distance…

I finally make the call. I call for a tow boat. I really don’t want to but I’d like even less to spend the night on the ICW with no batteries and no way to charge them and no hope of more wind in the morning. It has to happen. I make the call, and we wait. It’s dark now with the bridge just slightly closer and we see them rushing towards us and then slowing to ask us if we’re on the hook. No. We’re not on the hook, we’re just not moving. They come and tie ropes onto us and then off we go. Six plus knots now, the icy wind in our faces for an hour, maybe more? As we head to our destination marina for the night to charge up and begin all again, I ponder why I wanted to do this in the first place. With less thought than was required to give them a call, I discover that I don’t mind the icy wind, nor the quiet night. I don’t mind having to take more time to get where we need to go. I just love being on my boat regardless of the circumstances. I discover I have no regrets, none.

We make to Belhaven, set the boat to charge up for the night and go to bed. Next morning, the charge still isn’t complete and I worry. I wonder what is wrong and if I’ve done something wrong. Yup! I sure have. I didn’t plug the 30 amp cord in correctly. I’ve melted my cord and it’s a wonder I didn’t set my boat on fire. We still have some battery and the winds today are supposed to be stellar. We plug in better with another cord and go get breakfast. A little more charge makes me feel better. After breakfast we’re off to a great start. Once we are out of the marina the wind is perfect, we’re sailing now. 6, sometimes 7 knots with the wind at our backs. My boat is loving this! She’s meant for weather like this. Before we know it we’re already on the Pamlico heading toward home. There’s another marina we consider stopping at to recharge some over lunch but the wind is so good we don’t want to waste it so we keep on sailing.

As we get closer to the river leading to Bath, I notice we’re not moving as well. The wind is a little less and off our side so I adjust the sails some and we’re still doing well, about 4 knots. I look over and notice the land isn’t moving again. What have I missed? There’s still a little wind but it’s not enough to keep us moving forward. I try tacking and do pretty well for a little while. Then when we turn I use the engine a little to get us ready to tack again. We’re at least moving forward again. But what is going on? Why is it so hard? The tide! The tide is going out, against us. We use the engine more but the battery is already complaining. We’d passed up the marina we could have charged at. The only other option is Bath. Bath is a mile and a half up the river just to our right. I might have enough battery to get there. I radio them and decide to go for it.

When we do finally arrive at Bath we are moving along at about a knot and a half. It took us over an hour to make it there with our engine slowing down the entire way. We plug in using the owner’s cord since I don’t trust mine, walk to the local Family Dollar to get some sandwich meat and then go back to the boat. It was a good stop, we met a few people, enjoyed some conversation and learned some more about my engine. What we failed to do, though, was stay. About 4 o’clock, I got antsy. I wanted to get home tonight and I really thought we could do it. We took the boat and motored back to the Pamlico and made our turn, no problems.

Then, then the damn thing decides it’s not going forward any longer. The battery slows but the wind picks up a little and we’re begin moving forward at least, just not quickly. It’s starting to get dark again and we still aren’t at our destination. Looking at the map, we just aren’t that far away. Why can’t we make it there? Do I really have to call for a tow, yet again?? I hate asking for help. Yes, I know that’s a problem but it’s just the way I am. I’m learning to ask more often but I still don’t like it. I wait. We are sailing somewhat after all. It really is getting darker, though, and colder. I make the call, again. AGAIN! Can I not get home without help?? No. I can’t. I have to allow others to help me and I have to learn to ask. They say an hour, and an hour passes. An hour fifteen, an hour and a half… I call again. That boat got into the crab pots and a different one was heading our way but would be another hour. We wait. Finally we see them and they make their way to us. I’m relieved beyond belief! It’s time for us to get home.

The sun is setting and the boat is slowing.

Thankfully, we arrive at our home marina full of health and in time to catch our ride to the house. My boat is home, resting, and charging with her shiny new 30 amp cord. We’ve made it. Our journey began in Norfolk, Virginia and ended in Washington, NC. We followed the ICW most of the way and we learned a lot. I’m no longer clueless with sailing. I’m not an expert but I’m much better than I was when I began. I started out not knowing anything. Instead of giving up or never trying I kept at it and I’ve become captain of my own sailboat, one that I can sail on my own if I choose. I’ve faced my fears and I’ve allowed myself to grow. I can’t imagine having not at least tried.

I look forward to my adventures to come. What would life be like if we all lived our dreams and didn’t let fear stop us? Thank you for allowing me to share mine with you,

thank you for reading,

me

7 Ways to Waste a Perfectly Good Day…

How do you waste a perfectly good day and still have a perfectly good day? I feel like a pro. Let me give you some pointers:

1 – Don’t plan what you’re going to wear the night before. Don’t do anything the night before that will require you to do anything in the morning. This is important. If you plan something it needs to be canceled or you will ruin your perfect chance for a wasting a perfectly good day.

2 – Once you get in bed, stay there. Read something useless until you feel sleepy then let yourself go to sleep. A perfect day really does begin the night before. It’s important that you set yourself up just right or you may ruin your chance for a perfect day.

3 – Finally, morning has arrived, the sun has risen, your eyes have opened of their own accord because they are so used to opening in the morning. Don’t worry, just lay there a few minutes longer. There’s nothing to do and nowhere to go. Lay there, check out your Facebook feed, read some more… anything… just Do Not Get Out Of Bed, not until there is absolutely no chance of falling back to sleep.

4 – The time has come, you’ve gotta pee and you aren’t even the slightest bit sleepy any longer. Good. Go ahead, get up but don’t get dressed. There’s no reason to, not yet. Heck, this is your day, you don’t even have to get dressed unless you just want to.

5 – Now if you must, which of course I did, go to the kitchen and fix yourself a cup of coffee. Stand there, wait, do nothing… watch it brew and just enjoy the anticipation of holding that warm cup and sipping it in peace. Take it to a place to sit comfortably and just let yourself be with your coffee for as long as you need. This is excellent for you… being still and being present to now and nothing else. This is what you’ve been told you need to do more than once. Just be still for a few and let yourself feel or think anything that comes up or nothing at all. You will be better for this, trust me.

6 – As the morning changes to noon to afternoon and then evening just marvel at the fact that you were able to sit still for so long. You are merely thanking your body for all the hard work that it has put forth over the last few weeks. Your body deserves this amazing break and you deserve to enjoy it as well.

7 – As nighttime approaches put a movie on, drink a beer (or a cider like I do), put your feet up and end your day on a positive note. Popcorn might be a good idea but only if it’s not too much work.  Praise yourself for letting yourself rest. You’ve done well.

There are other things that you can do to waste a perfectly good day and still keep it perfectly good but why bother? Wasting the day away is what the goal was and you’ve done well, adding more might just ruin all of your hard work. I have thoroughly enjoyed wasting my perfectly good day. Tomorrow will be different and busy, but today? Today was a perfectly wasted perfectly good day.

thank you for reading,

me