My back is feeling better. It's not a ton better, but it's better and it's wonderful. I feel like I have more energy and was able to take a short trip to the gluten free bakery with my oldest daughter as a way to celebrate this and life in general. I don't want to be writing this right now. I have a list of other things I would like and need to be doing, but I'm trying very hard to be more disciplined and to cultivate better habits so here I am. The good news is I wrote some fiction today and it was so much fun that I can't wait to get back and do it again soon.

They will probably never read this, but I am absolutely indebted to my chiropractor who also employs a fabulous massage therapist. They made room for me in a tight schedule and I really appreciate how they treat me as a patient. I complain about the healthcare system quite a bit so I feel like I need to be fair and commend the people who are going the extra mile and not making me feel like a resented intrusion when I come in with cash.

This Christmas my mom and middle sister are thinking about buying people a weekend at a ski resort or water park type place. We did this once before as a family and I have some mixed feelings about the idea. It sounds nice in theory, but I didn't like it when my next youngest sister assumed others were watching her oldest instead of asking us if we would. Everyone is older now which will probably make things smoother, but the food thing is another issue I really don't feel like dealing with again.

My mind feels really scattered right now. Like I don't know where I'm going or how I'm going to end up where I want to be so I'm going to make a list of things that I want to be working toward:

1. Discipline. Doesn't matter how I feel, just do it.

2. Creating a daily routine. Wake up early, do some stretches, eat breakfast, get some writing and tweeting done, go for a walk, make supper, do some housework, have lunch, write if I got my other things done, pick up girls from school. Hang out with them for a while during snack. Supper, bath, reading, bed.

3. Streamline more processes around the house. I've started with my wardrobe and it's working well to have things that virtually go with everything I own. An expensive investment at first that was well worth the money spent.

4. Remember that change takes time, but slow and steady can win the race. I also want to create better ways to treat myself for work well done.

5. Reward myself when I do well instead of beating myself up for the times that I've failed. Every day I want to think about positive character traits I have and ways to use those.

6. Commit to a regular blog post whether that's one a week or one a month. Continue to network within the industry and talk to people about ways to monetize footwear analysis.

7. Find a new way to volunteer. Every time I drive past the sign that says a therapeutic riding facility is looking for help I think that I should do that. But I'm scared. So I would like to get over that because the few times that I have ridden I've really enjoyed it. Related: I miss tentative and her horse writeups.

8. Take more creative risks. I want to take piano lessons again. I'd love to take voice lessons. I love to sing, I'm just not very good at it. But I could get better. This is another thing that I've wanted to do for years and never came up with the money to do it.

9. Be thankful for the people in my life even the ones I wish weren't there. They're teaching me something and I wouldn't wish ill on anyone regardless of how they've treated me in the past.

10. Write more than daylogs for E2. I used to feel pretty connected to this place. Now I use it for mostly selfish reasons. This place prefers content so if I'm here I would like to feel as if I'm contributing something other than a daylog a day. There is value in that, but I can do more and better.

So that's my list for now. I'd like to keep coming back to this as a way to bookmark my progress, and that's something I need to get better at as my goals tend to be whispy and insubstantial. It's always something, but I feel good for having gotten back into the list generating groove again.

Until next time,


It seems I unwittingly did the wrong thing with the furnace and a pressure relief valve was triggered which caused a small pond of hot water to form in our old basement. Weather here has been going below freezing at night and sometimes staying there during the day.

Texted my son-in-law at work and he came over, not only explaining how a furnace works, but what was needed to fix it. I said I really appreciated his help, but could he show one of our sons everything because my mind just doesn't work that way. He happily did this and after a few hours, everything was as it should be.

In the middle of that though, I had to pick up my husband and borrowed my son-in-law's Jeep. I passed the sycamore and a dead baby skunk. Something about its tiny paws reaching up to the sky saddened me immensely. I wondered where its mother was and if skunks feel sadness. Parked the Jeep and as I stepped out, my left foot caught on the side of the car and next thing I know, I'm hitting the pavement pretty hard with my whole left side, in particular, left hip.

As I lay there in the glorious sunshine, I prayed nothing was broken or fractured. Slowly got up and limped towards building. Got husband and his art project of a turkey and four words pasted onto white paper saying what he's thankful for: autumn, friends, home, feast.

Somewhere between the furnace fixing and falling out of the Jeep, I had received a phone call from Pine Acres with news that my mother had a heart event during the night and was now on oxygen, awaiting a chest X-ray to rule out pneumonia.

Sent out a brief email to the siblings, had my son replace a smoke detector battery that had interrupted my sleep all night with intermittent bleeping or chirping or whatever that annoying sound is called. Took 2 extra strength acetaminophen and 2 ibuprofen and 1 muscle relaxer, then sat on various ice packs while my husband slept through Family Feud and Wendy Williams.

In the middle of all that, I had helped the old cat get to the litter box and eat, plus moved some laundry from the washing machine to the dryer. My son picked up the new sleeping meds for his Dad, then headed off for the weekend. Prior to this, I had written about recent E2 Bugs, although my initial attempt was to fill a nodeshell as well as see if anyone else was having similar problems.

My husband was still napping and I was ready for food, so I made a spinach salad with avocado, onion, and marinated artichoke hearts. Got laundry from dryer and planned to get back on ice, fold laundry and have a glass of wine. All settled with pillows and ice packs, when suddenly I feel one of my teeth moving and out drops a $2000 crown.

My sister calls regarding my mother, and I tell her about my eventful day. She tells me it's "God's way of telling me I'm doing too much." I said, "Seriously? Well, God can stop giving me so many things to deal with and I'll be happy to slow down." I believe in God, but not like that, then she told me what I should be thankful for and I said, "I'm thankful about the smallest things these days; you have no idea.".

Before hanging up the phone, told my sister I loved her, then thought about four words of thankfulness: sleep, family, skies, and music.

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