Saturday, January 30, 2010

Interpretations welcomed

In last night's dream, I was hosting a large dinner party. All the guests were people I barely knew. The food was served on a large buffet table. I was sitting at a table and plucked a strawberry from the desert plate (I was really hungry and hadn't had breakfast). I then announced that dinner was served. I felt anxious and nearly annoyed, as I didn't really know any of these people, and I wasn't exactly enjoying myself. After what I determined was a couple of hours, I began to clean up the dishes. There were bus trays full of every dish imaginable. I announced, "OK Folks, either help clean up or clear out..." Some folks promptly made their farewells, some pitched in to help clean up, while still a few threw comments about how rude I was. Mandy Patinkin came up to me (I weird is that...he would think me a stalker!) and in that gentle demeaner that he portrays as Agent Gideon, he said, "So did you have fun at your party? It was a nice party, you should be set for awhile. I noticed you ate your desert, first - (referring to the strawberry!) you should take care of yourself." Then he placed the flat of his hand on my abdomen.


To dream that you are at a party, suggests that you need to get out more and enjoy yourself. If the party is bad, then it indicates that you are unsure of your social skills.
(hmmm... .chin-scratch...)

To see or eat strawberries in your dream, signifies your sensual desires and temptation. Strawberries is often associated with feminine qualities and female sexuality. Alternatively, to see strawberries in your dream indicates that your ideas and goals are soon realized.

To see dishes in your dream, represents ideas, concepts, and attitudes. The dream may be a pun on the things you are "dishing" out to others. Or it could describe someone you are interested in as in someone who is a "dish". Perhaps it is time that you make the first move. If the dishes are dirty and unwashed, then it signifies dissatisfaction and an unpromising outlook. You may have overlooked some problems in your life or you have not confronted your emotions.
To dream that you are washing dishes, suggests that you are moving on and planning for the next thing that comes your way. Alternatively, it represents your daily routine. Perhaps you are in a rut.

To see a celebrity in your dream, represents your beliefs and understanding about him or her. Something in you waking life has triggered these similar beliefs and feelings. It is not uncommon that your obsession with a certain celebrity may carry over onto your dream world. Celebrities are often seen as heroes and all that is mighty. Also consider any puns within the name.
To dream that you are good friends with a celebrity, represents your idealized version of someone you know in your life. Perhaps you hope that a real-life friend can act more like a particular celebrity. Consider the qualities that you see in this celebrity and how you want your friends to have those qualities.

To see your abdomen in a dream, refers to your natural instincts and repressed emotions. There is something in your real life that you "cannot stomach" or have difficulties accepting. You need to get it out of your system. Alternatively, the abdomen may be strictly physiological and you may just be experiencing constipation or indigestion

Thursday, January 28, 2010

choice corrections

I have noticed that I am becoming jaded. I have lost touch with sensitivity to my fellow being. Perhaps commuting in automobiles attributes to it, as that’s the first correction I receive.
For several years, I rode a bicycle to work. It was great…it was actually quicker to bicycle than to drive or walk. I have always owned a “beach cruiser:” and it was perfect… Then I decided to buy a house and move off of the island, so even though the drive is only 5 miles, it is a drive in the car in traffic.
I jockey for position; I don’t let others cut in when a merge lane approaches. I maneuver the alternating light as if it were a contest. In the left (pass) lane, I curse the out of state geriatric driver that is rubber-neckin’ at a sub speed. Sometimes I honk in irritation.
I need a correction collar, just like Gracie has with the invisible fence. When I approach being out of bounds, a sensor should go off to “correct” me. I am having to reel myself in.
Over the course of the past six months, I have busied myself with everything else except my spiritual reading. By that I mean books that enrich my spirituality. I am a huge fan of Edgar Cayce, and recently books on the Essenes, and the Tibetan monks and remnants of Atlantis. These readings keep me grounded in what is real. My current favorite, and Shell’s-Bells Recommended Reading:
This book is very deep, for me. I am ingesting the words, little by little. Some of it is bitter fruit to swallow. That is when and where my reading stalls.
If the choices we make are not in tune with the universal consciousness, then we are not achieving our goal; that goal being to all become one, again.
The manuscripts that are said to be referenced in this book serve as my correction collar when my thinking falls out of line.

Here is my interpretation of some of the readings:

Every moment we come upon another
Fork in the Road
Every moment we choose
Our Way Our Destiny
Every Action creates Reactions
Choosing not to act, is an action with a reaction
No Choice Have You
But to Choose
Choose you WILL
Where you are
Where you have been
Where You will be
Is affected by Your Choice
Our Consciousness is the result
of our own Choosing
Where you are is
Where you have come
Where you WILL go
Is decided by how you are
With Free WILL we choose our Destiny
We were destined to Choose
The destiny we have Freely Chosen
Posted by Michelle at 5:38 PM
(originally posted Sep 1, 2009)

Please re read the above focusing on Choice and Will.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010


I have sat here with a blank page for about 20 minutes. I feel an obligation to enter in the journal, but have nothing I want to write.
So, I've sat blank.
And you get

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Natural beauty

I wanted to share with you the beauty of this rose that I cut from my garden. I wish I could share with you the intoxicatingly beautiful frangrance it emits. As I sit looking out over the lawn, shadows move across the ground in an eerie way. Several large ravens circle above the trees. Yesterday, as I read an e-mail in which the writer claimed to have just seen his first red cardinal of the year, I heard the all-too-familiar song, and turned to see a male cardinal lighting on the bird bath. At sundown, I looked out over the vista to see a great horned owl touch down on the lawn.
Yesterday I had a new dishwasher installed. The mystery of the water is concluded. Now, perhaps, I can begin to focus on other home improvement projects. I don't know what to do first -
I think the world is watching football today. I don't - the only reason I know that there's play-offs today is because other folks tell me their plans revolve around watching games. I don't think I could care less about anything...

Saturday, January 16, 2010

a simple saturday

It was a long, hard work-week. I got home last night about sundown. I put the dogs out (Gracie can roam free, but poor Ruca has to be on the line...she needs 'the collar'...), read the mail - all very boring - poured a martini and plopped in front of the boob tube and channel-surfed. TV is pretty droll. I enjoy the program, Criminal Minds and blindly watched back to back episodes. Hard to say what it is that I like about this program, but it may be the 'profiling'...and of course 'agent Gideon'. Mandy Patinkin is very, very good in this show. Somewhere around the beginning of the third episode, which began with a hooded man sneaking into a woman's home, hiding in her closet, then bludgeoning her to death in her sleep, I had enough! "What you focus on, you attract" I told myself as I turned off the TV, closed the sliding glass doors and went to bed. After a few hours' sleep, I heard Sarah come home. It was 3 AM. Ruca had been sleeping in Gracie's bed at the foot of my bed, but when her 'mom' came home, she ran to greet her. Gracie had been in my bed (cuz Ruca was in hers!) and she is the worst bed-mate. She literally sleeps on top of me.
I woke at 7 AM to the sound of Gracie barfing....great....she and her partner in crime had gotten into the trash the day before, and the chicken wings had come back up. What a way to start the day.....I cleaned it up and went back to bed. One of my greatest pleasures is going back to bed.
It's Saturday morning of a 3-day weekend, and I'm sitting here looking at the very over-cast sky. I have no plans for the weekend, only several things I should do, and a few things I want to do. I should buy a dishwasher.... I'd like to get out to the beach to visit friends who are over at their beach house for the weekend from the east coast. I should mow the lawn and get some of these plants out of pots and into the ground. I'd like to take Gracie to a dog park, or to the beach. .. I should clean bathrooms, laundry..... woulda ....shoulda ... coulda....
Meanwhile, on a 'no plans' day, I sit with my coffee and peanut butter toast, listening to the drip-drip-drip of the copper water line that used to be attached to the dishwasher, looking out over the lawn at the wax myrtle tree i planted last weekend... hoping it survives, as it looks pretty sun-burned... the young mango trees I planted also are getting way too much sun...a good location for a more mature tree, perhaps.... I'll have to keep a watch on those.... Gracie is out burying a bone. Chester, the neighbor's macaw, is screaching at the gardener next door, otherwise, it's a very quiet Saturday morning.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

To blog or not to blog...

I kind of felt a little guilty, like I was prying into your private life or the life of your family. But then, since it was on the web, I figured I could read on......


Then I realized I KNEW you and felt voyeur-ish!!

Above are two separate comments from two separate friends, commenting on my blog. How different is it from those who write memoirs? My main goal in 'blogging' is to write. As any art, practice makes perfect. If I want to some day be published, I need to practice. 'Publishing' on the internet gives me a mold to follow, a reason to edit and polish.

so thank you. thank you for reading my blog, and thank you for your comments. and I hope that we will have an enduring relationship.

Thursday, January 7, 2010

I've been plumbed...

$385.00 later I have a cleared sink / sewer line and a brand new garbage disposal. I also have a "shot" dishwasher.
I called Aztec Plumbing this morning and was pleased that they were able to have a technician out her at 3:00 this afternoon. Seeing that water was dripping from the bottom of the disposal, the tech determined the disposal was bad, removed it and showed me the damaged unit. When I asked him a few questions about the pipe lines etc., and asked why is it that the right side drain is clogged if it was the disposal. He looked surprised, and agreed to check it out after he installed the new disposal.
50' of snake and 30 nearly 30 minutes later, and the drain ran clear. Some of the blades were bad, as well, in the old disposal, so they weren't chopping the food up small enough.
When I mentioned that I believed the discharge line on the dishwasher was bad, he disagreed, as it hooks into the garbage disposal. He opined that it was more likely some gasket or seal on the dishwasher itself. I showed him the inspection report identifying the damaged copper water line in the attic, and he quickly added that it would be better to repipe: a proposal of $3070. Of course that's cpvc, not copper, and 1/4 turn valve and new hosebibs and braided supplies at all fixtures - blah blah blah. Oh - and for an additional $350, install a new water heater. (such a deal). I think I'll stew on this awhile.

Oh the joys of home ownership.

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

the mystery of the water part VI

The day after the discovery of the dishwasher discharge, (which happened to be New Year's Eve morn) I had a conversation with Ken M. who is a friend as well as a building inspector. I told him what I had discovered. He said it makes perfect sense, especially in light of the fact that the house was vacant for so long, and the age of the dishwasher. He said those rubber hoses can get dry-rotted, and when they/ I began using the dishwasher with such enthusiasm, the hose expanded and contracted and then probably cracked. He also went on to say that it should be a relatively simple fix: a hose from Home Depot or Lowes and pull out the dishwasher and replace it.
When it comes to water and electric, I'm pretty chicken. I was happy to FINALLY find the source of the leak. I was willing to do without the dishwasher for a short while. I would assess the matter.
New Year's Eve and the holiday weekend saw some record cold temperatures here in SW FLA. I pulled the two turkey carcasses from Thanksgiving out of the freezer and decided to make Turkey Frame Soup. I boiled down the carcasses and Sarah removed the major bones. I put the broth and the turkey in the fridge and would make the soup the next day. Saturday afternoon I sliced and diced carrots, celery, onion, sauteed, added corn and seasonings, and made a wonderful pot of turkey soup (complete with large egg noodles).
In the process, I had liberal use of the garbage disposal. I ran plenty of cold water with its use. You guessed it: drain clog.
How do you plunge a clogged drain in a 2-sided sink? Plug one side and plundge the other. Ever try that solo? I have been plundging with great faith - but little luck.
I spent Monday from 8:00 AM to 6:30 PM in Council meeting. Then Tuesday AM from 8:30-11:30 in staff meetings. Never a chance to call a plumber. I talked to some friends about "knowing somebody" that I could hire to check it out.
Meanwhile, I plundge.

Here it is Wednesday, January 6 and I have a clogged drain and out of commission dishwasher.

Monday, January 4, 2010

The mystery of the water part V

When I moved in on Nov 4, I moved all my things into the house before I moved out the previous owners’ stuff. In trying to trouble shoot the water, I went through boxes and buckets and drawers and cupboards trying to get my hands on a working flashlight. I changed batteries (rather pleased with myself in finding the box with the replacement batteries) and then changed bulbs – I went through a half dozen various flashlights. At one point, Kev offered a pen-light he had in his truck. Sarah climbed the ladder to the attic but the pen light dimmed and died as soon as she moved away from the stair.
I’ll stop at the hardware store after work tomorrow, I said. We’ll take a look at that leak tomorrow night.
Wednesday nite we had two new bright flashlights. We pulled down the attic ladder, and with a tin pan in hand, Sarah climbed up to check out the leak. (I supervised from below J) After a short while, Sarah climbed back down. “Mom, that’s not the problem – the pipe’s not wet, the insulation and the wall is dry…that’s not the source of the leak….”
We put the ladder back up. I poured a glass of wine.
Sarah and I sat down to California pizza and a garden salad. After dinner, I cleaned up the dishes and took a shower. I was in my bedroom readying for bed, when Sarah called, “Mom? Are you still awake?” I opened my bedroom door. “It’s the dishwasher!” Sarah exclaimed. I looked in her room at the cement floor now flooding. The smell of Cascade was pronounced. The water was running from the corner of the bedroom adjoining the kitchen, along the exterior wall (under the window) and pooled in the closet.
I turned off the dishwasher and hauled out the shop vac.
Boy is this getting old…..

Friday, January 1, 2010


As intermission from the mystery of the water,

here's a pic of me !

enjoying my company in my new house!

Thanksgiving 2009

The mystery of the water Part IV

Monday after work I was sitting in the kitchen, at the "breakfast nook" table. Sarah and I were just chatting about various things; some work stuff, some family stuff, and my ever present mystery of the leak. "I know I seem to be obsessed with this..." I would frequently say. It was starting to make me crazy. As we talked, I looked up and saw the patches in the ceiling from the truss repair work that was done the day after I moved in. I wonder if perhaps the guys dinged a pipe or something putting the trusses in... I thought to myself.

At the time of the house inspection, it was noted that 3 or 4 trusses had extensive damage from termites. The previous owners knew of the subterranean termites and had the house treated. They also maintained the annual inspection and treatment. There was no presence of live termites at the time my house was inspected, but some of the trusses over the kitchen area were so badly damaged from the termites, that the inspector urged that I address this damage soon. The next day a local GC came by and gave a quote: $1,000. to "sister-up" the 4 damaged trusses. It would mean bringing the boards up through two cuts to the ceiling over the kitchen. The day after I closed on the house, Mark (the GC) and helper showed up at 9AM and fixed the brittle trusses.
As I looked up and at the patched drywall, (which, BTW, was an awesome job! it matches beautifully! wouldn't notice it if you didn't see it done.) I thought about the inspection report......
Monday night went on and Tuesday morning took me to work....all day something nagged at me: I needed to get my hands on my home inspection report. It was somewhere in a pile of all kinds' o' papers, folders, binders....paper.... stacked on the dresser in my bedroom. I'd gone through it quickly the morning before I left for work, and didn't find it. Tues night I found it. It was where a calmer, more careful look would have found it.
I turned to one of the pages with small photos of problem spots. That's what had been nagging at me:

"Well, there you go!" Sarah quipped when I read it to her. There I go, indeed. I turned to the page which detailed


and read:

NOTE: Evidence of leaking is noted at one of the copper lines. This is near a 45 fitting over the kitchen area. This should be checked and repaired by a licensed plumbing contractor.

Well there I go.

The mystery of the water Part III

I left the rug and pad rolled back in the bedroom for about an hour while I "studied" the situation. The carpet was soaked, and stunk. The padding was soaked. The concrete floor was drying. After about an hour or so of study, I dug out a razor knife from one of the drawers in the garage and tried to cut away at the wet carpet. My logic was that the carpeting throughout the house was old, stained, worn and dirty. Before moving in, I fantasized about putting in wood floors, or laminate, like Pergo. Knowing that I would have hidden expenses, I decided to move in and deal with the cosmetics one at a time. I decided at this time, with saturated stinky dirty carpet, that it was not worth saving. If the wet carpet is gone, I can better gauge where the water's coming from. Plus, my daughter should not have to sleep in such a stinky room.

Well, the razor knife was too dull to make a dent in the carpeting, so I went to the kitchen and grabbed the knife that I used to slice the Thanksgiving turkeys. It was indeed sharp. I cut away about 3 feet wide and 8 feet long of wet carpet and padding. The wet carpet and pad was outta there. I hauled it off to the garage to wait for trash day.

I was still scratchin' my head, stewing over this dilemna. Troubleshooting is indeed trouble-some. It was about sundown on a sunday eve. I went back to my belief that it had to be something not tested in the home inspection. Even though I had run several loads of laundry that day, I decided to run "one more". The carpet was up, now, so, any leakage would be apparent. I ran the washing machine, and no leaks. I ran the 'water in the door' on the fridge, ran the ice maker, ran the garbage disposal, ran the showers, the toilets....even the outside faucets. Nuthin'.

I was feelin' a bit stumped.

Holiday Pics!

The mystery of the water, Part II

Kev and I patched the gap in the back of the house where the A/C tube came in. (Actually Kev caulked, I 'supervised'). Rain was forcast for the next day, so this will set up in 3 hours. I was at work the next day and called home to ask Lauren to check whether the floor was dry after the rain. It was. whoo hoo!

Several days later, Sarah was moving in her stuff into the 3rd bedroom. She will no longer rent the house on the beach where she's lived for the past 2-3 years. That's a whole 'nother story perhaps for another blog, but this particular evening she was setting up her bed and the knees of her jeans were wet: "This carpet's wet, mom....." I was surprised and puzzled. Sure enough - it was soaked in the corner of the closet and under the window - just as it had been before. I certainly got my money's-worth out of that shop-vac. This time it wasn't quite as much water, but I vacuumed and put the fans on and opened the window to dry it out. What the heck could it be?

There was some theory that the A/C drain was clogged, but that didn't make sense as I hadn't run the A/C since I moved in. It had to be something that wasn't tested in the house inspection before I bought it. The washing machine wasn't tested - but that was on the complete opposite side of the house - but where did the water drain to? The ice maker wasn't on when I moved in: the refrigerator backed the bedroom, so perhaps that's it. I turned it off for a day or so.

We enjoyed a wonderful Christmas eve, with a dinner of blackened ahi tuna and short ribs, baked potato, fresh broccoli and carrots and a garden salad. We opened our gifts late into the evening. Christmas day we went to the Beach for a great dinner with my brother and his family.

The day after Christmas I was doing chores, including several loads of laundry. At one point I checked on the carpet only to find that it was again saturated. Days earlier, I pulled away the carpet and pad in the closet to expose the concrete pad. I was able to look directly at the floor to see any new wetness. With this current flooding, I pulled away more of the carpet into the bedroom under the window. The rubber pad underneath was saturated. I pulled Sarah's bed away from the wall, only to discover that the carpet was soaked the whole length of the room along the back wall. I pulled back 2-3 feet to expose the concrete floor, which was puddled with water. Shop Vac time again.

This is so darned puzzling.......