Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Not What I Expected

Turn & face the strange changes.  That's what I feel like is happening sometimes lately.  :)  (Thank you David Bowie, for the descriptive help.)  I'm getting a little reflective because it's almost birthday time and that makes me consider the years that have passed and wonder how life has worked out so much differently than I imagined it would originally.  It's not what I expected.

When I say originally, think way back in the 80's...I'm wandering around with an asymmetric haircut featuring tons of hairspray,  listening to power ballads, and thinking that I'm just going to learn French, travel to Europe, fall in love, get married in my 20's, have kids by 30, and be happy all the time.  Simple.

Alas, it didn't really go that way.  
I did learn some French. (My class name was "Simone.")
I eventually traveled in Europe.  (It was Italy, thanks to the Air Force.)
I fell in love.  (Too many times to count.)
I got married in my 20's.  (And got divorced in my 20's.)
I'm still happy most of the time (thanks, in part, to the chemical magic of Prozac).

Today was another change marker as the marriage I embarked on in my 30's is now coming to a close in my 40's.  Curt & I signed our divorce paperwork this afternoon.  I know it's still not official until my attorney (aka Dad) files it at the courthouse, but it still feels like the "official" day for us.  We've had a challenging relationship in that we've never actually lived under the same roof.  Sure, there are lots of couples who don't live in the same place--lots of them are military couples who end up stationed at different places for short stints, usually a year or so.  Well, we went into this marriage a couple of years ago knowing that he was headed to Afghanistan and I was headed to Alabama.  (I don't know which of us had it worse!  haaaaaaaaa)  We had hoped that our follow-on assignments would put us both back in the National Capital Region, but, alas, I ended up in Hampton, Virginia when he got assigned back there in DC.  We never really had a chance to create that sort of household foundation.  When we finally sat down to analyze our near and longer term plans for life/assignments, it became clear that we were actually diverging more than converging.  There's still a lot of love and caring between us, but our paths are headed in two different directions.  He's got a kickass assignment to New York City, now, working with the United Nations and I'm staying right here in Hampton for another year.  
I did not expect to be getting a second divorce for my 41st birthday, but it looks like that's how my power ballad lyrics of a life are rolling.  We had a nice dinner tonight and parted laughing and knowing that we'll see each other again for sure.  (His kitty's staying with me!) 

Now I just have to figure out how to get back to Europe and work on that kid piece...maybe... 

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Shells on the Beach - An Art Jewelry Elements Blog Hop


That's really all I need to say to bring to mind all those lovely things that summer entails, including the beach and sun and sand and joy.  Oh, and the relief of aloe on a sunburn or icy-hot on an overworked muscle.  haaaaaaaaaa

I was wandering around in blog land this morning and found a lovely picture from Jen Cameron over on the Art Jewelry Elements blog...it's the inspiration for a beachy, summer, lovely blog hop.  I immediately thought of the shell-y pendants I made last summer, inspired by a lovely walk on the beach here in Hampton Roads.
Captiva Island Shells

So, I found these in my (massive) jewelry collection and want to share them here again since they remind me of last year's fun and hope for more beach adventures this year....
Plus, now I'm thinking about pulling out the resin and seeing what other summer lovin' I can capture
Or, maybe I should even try to sell these babies so my own jewelry collection is less massive.  :)  If you're interested...let me know...
Hope you get out and about to experience the joy of the beach as well as the joy of an inspiring blog hop!  I'm sure you'll see a ton of beauty in both places!!

Thanks to the Art Jewelry Elements blog for the morning push to create!!!

Saturday, June 16, 2012

Dear Daddy,

Every day when I'm taking my little indoor bike ride, I think of you and the thousands of miles you've gone on your two wheels.  I may not be moving forward, but it still gives me time to reflect on things and enjoy a little peace.

Today I'm reflecting on the creativity you helped me grow.  I thank you for the abilities you helped foster that make it a little easier to think and make and draw and design and imagine and create.  Those things shape nearly everything in my life, not just when I'm sitting in front of a blank piece of paper or in front of a pile of beads.  Being able to move my thinking outside the box and change perspectives has made me the leader I am today.  It influences everything from how I put an Excel spreadsheet together to how I try to get my team to solve major problems.  My personal life may seem kind of a shambles at times, but I still have the confidence to come up with some kind of interesting solution...and that's because I know you'll always be there behind me.

Baby JenYou showed me that reading and learning is a natural part of life.  It took me a while to realize that not everyone values those things, so when I read something cool or get that "click" in my mind when something falls into place, I know how special it is.  Even though you're esoteric tendencies will always be out of my reach, at least I can still reach.  :)  

I just wanted you to know how much you influence things I do every single day...even if I don't call and tell you all that often.  :)

I'm going to go biking now...in your honor on this Father's Day.



Tuesday, June 12, 2012

A Hipstamatic Study of National War College Architectural Details

Or, in simpler terms:  pics I took while at Curt's graduation ceremony last week.  :)

First off, I have to say Congratulations to him...he's finished up a year at the National War College at Fort McNair.  It has been a year of ups and downs and a few sideways, but he made it.  And now he's off to new adventures!  It was great to spend a few hours with his mom, dad, brother and sister as we enjoyed a gorgeous June day and the graduation ceremony for all the National Defense University Students.  I couldn't help but whip out my phone and take pics as we toured around the historic buildings.  I've tried out Instagram, but Hipstamatic is still my favorite.  Here are a few shots...
Lens:  John S - Film:  Big Up
Lens:  Jimmy - Film:  Dream Canvas
Lens:  Kaimal Mark II - Film:  Rock BW-11
Lens:  James M - Film:  AO BW

Lens:  James M - Film:  Big Up

Lens:  James M - Film: Dream Canvas
Lens:  Kaimal Mark - Film:  Rock BW-11

Saturday, June 2, 2012

"She was destined to be a hot mess"

I'm not really a journaling kind of girl, but the other day while traveling I ended up taking a few notes on strange things I heard.  My favorite has to be from the guy sitting behind me on the plane:

"She was destined to be a hot mess."

I know he wasn't talking about me...or, at least I assume he wasn't, but still...what an applicable statement.  I'm a hot mess in progress and having fun.  And, yes, you're seeing a woman in uniform who just got down and dirty with some purple cupcakes.  MMMMMmmmmhmmmmmm

 In honor of hot messes, I am sharing a video of one of my favorite comedy routines of all time from Ralphie May.  I have a crazy relationship with food  and exercise so his take on fitness and eating hits really close to home...I love it!  It's seriously worth watching if you love cake and icing.

The man sings the word "fudge."  haaaaaaaaaa  You can't beat that for a smile!

Friday, June 1, 2012

Cold Beer and Limes

I spent Memorial Day weekend in San Antonio sharing memories with old friends over cold beer with limes. 
And then some other chats and laughs over margaritas with limes and a little extra salt...
Then I found a new Hipstamatic lens and had fun with cacti. 
 And stars...since they shine big and bright deep in the heart of Texas.  Especially in Gruene where we ate and ate and had a few more beers with limes. :)
 I made my friends play country music in the truck the whole time.
 And we played more with our cameras at the antique shop.  GRRRRRR.
 I didn't realize how much I miss San Antonio and my friends.  :)  
 At least I have a fun phone to play with!


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Bedford, PA, United States
I'm a retiree/artist/student who makes things. It's a nice kind of lifestyle!

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