Displaced Stay At Home Californian in rural N. Carolina

The Many Faces of Joy

The Many Faces of Joy

Wednesday, November 27, 2013


With everything that has been going on lately in our lives I have not had time to sit down and write about my life.  However as I sit here and hear the sounds of my mother-in-law baking up a storm in the kitchen in preparation for turkey day tomorrow I thought I would squeeze in a short story about our new surroundings.

We put the puppy's crate in our bedroom because it is big and because after nearly a year of living with us she still takes it upon herself to wake us up and by us I mean the whole family every morning by whining.  And she bases her morning wake up time on the weekday mornings when Gabe is up and doing his morning routine which is 5:15am.  So that means on the weekend no one gets to sleep in and now that she is bigger she packs a louder whine.  We have tried shaking the can with coins but if you shake that can at 5:15am on a Saturday you are likely to wake everyone else up in the house too.  So by putting her in our room we figured that she would know we were close by and not whine so loudly or so early.

And then I crated her on the second day in a new house and left the house but only slid the lock closed on the crate at the top of the crate, leaving the bottom latch open.  She somehow figured out that if she scratched at the crate enough she could squeeze her head out of the bottom but once she got her head out she had to get the rest of her body because the crate door trapping her head could have suffocated or asphyxiated her.  Now remember I am just recreating this in my mind much like a forensics person would because I wasn't here to witness in person what actually went down.

You can imagine my surprise when I got home and she was out of her crate and running around.  You can imagine even more surprise when I walked into my new bedroom of 2 days and saw 2 large holes chewed into the carpet where she had dug her paws in and pulled herself to freedom to escape being trapped between the crate door and the crate.  And you can imagine the anger and the spike in blood pressure when I saw the mess my new carpet was in, chewed up, blood, holes, even writing about it makes me mad all over again.

All I can say is I'm glad it was the dog that did it.  And I'm glad that we had a nice throw rug that fits right in that spot.  And that dog is back out in the living room where it can whine as much as it likes - I'm not making that mistake again. 

Friday, November 15, 2013

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

No News

There is a saying that goes like this, "No news is good news" but in our case sometimes no news means that you live across the country and no one thought to tell your or figured you cared or they got busy and didn't call or it just slipped their mind. 

Whatever the case - my Mom called me last night and happened to mention that one of  my uncles had passed away.  It was sad and made me feel really far away.  But the saddest part was that he had passed away more than a week ago and the funeral had already happened and I had heard nothing.  Not a single peep.  Not a whisper.  Not an email.  Not a text.  Nothing.  Nada.  Zero.  Zilch.

I used to wonder how it felt for my sister who is incarcerated and cannot come out to go to weddings and funerals and has to pass all these milestones in a very long time out situation but it turns out that moving 3,000 miles away can also put you in a very long and far time out.

Do I think I would have found out if I was still living in California?  I am not sure, I can't really say because something big has happened to my family and it has splintered us apart irreparably I fear.  I'm not sure what exactly it is but I know it has forever changed the dynamic of our extended family.

I didn't know a whole bunch about my uncle, I knew he was born in North Korea and that his family was splintered when the countries separated and he went to the south and many of his family were forced to stay in the North.  I know he was granted a visa in the last 10 years to go and visit his family that remained and say hellos and goodbyes.  I know he smiled often and laughed often and always had a hug.  I know he has fabulous children and many wonderful grandchildren.  I wish him speedy travels to wherever he is headed and I know that wherever he lands they will be richer for having spent time in his company.

That having been said,  I certainly feel badly for my cousins and my aunt.  And I hope that they are surrounded by light and love and people who can care for them. Bon Voyage Uncle Jonathan.

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Baltimore and DC

We took the girls to our nation's capital to see the monuments and the Smithsonian Museums and Gabe went to a convention.  We stayed in a historic hotel in the heart of Baltimore and we got to enjoy walking all over the city and spending lots of time at the waterfront.  We had so many wonderful experiences during our 5 days away and took many pictures to look at and enjoy.

There was only one downside to the trip and that was the noise.  We were on the 10th floor of this beautiful hotel but we could hear the buses outside.  We could hear the sirens.  The people talking.  The elevators.  The toilets flushing.  The shouts and chatter.  Other hotel doors opening and closing.  People knocking on doors.  Horns honking and car alarms going off.  Cell phones ringing.  Delivery trucks pulling up and dropping things off.  It was so noisy that I could not sleep well and was being woken up constantly by the city noises. 

We have been here 11 months now and I've grown accustomed to the quiet chirping of a bird or the wind blowing the leaves off the trees.  Squirrels will run up trees and deer take off running through the woods.  Maybe a branch will fall?  Or the mailman driving by and stopping causes a little noise.  My ears are the ears of country folk now and I can't sleep in the city anymore. 

Never thought I'd say that.