What if the grid crashes?

The internet is down at work.  Everything I need to work on is internet related.  I could probably sift through some papers and make piles.  I mean really I haven’t been here long enough to think about cleaning anything (like files) out.  I have barely started files.  So….what to do, what to do.

I know, I’ll blog.

Sooo,,,,how are you?  I’m fine thank you.  Last weekend was the Siesta Key weekend with the girls (Jer, Ker, Jan and Di, and me) A lovely time was had by all.  I got way too much sun on Sunday.  I don’t know what I was thinking when I sat out on that beach without sunscreen.  I think I had put it on in the morning but then forgot.  I really can’t remember how it happened but I was kind of a burgundy color at the end of the day.  Now I’m just tan and peeling.  I won’t do that again.

Here are some beach pics:

It wasn’t too hard to come “home” – I actually smiled when I walked into my little bungalow apartment.  Well you know, bungalow-ish.  A bungalow might be a little bigger.  Anyhoo, I’m settling in.  I might be settling in a little tooo much as my routine is work way too long days, come home and sit in the chair and watch TV.  It’s bad.  So to help with my laziness I started walking to work (and counting steps) Wait, did I already blog about this?  I think I may have.  But here’s some pictures from my morning walk to work:

Here we have a cute bakery that I pass every morning:


And this wall is extra cool and look at this artwork:

Then I get to the 7/11 which is right across the street from a PNC which always makes me feel at home:

shoot I deleted that picture by accident.  Well just imagine you are seeing a 7/11 across the street from a PNC.

Then to campus and at this time of year campus it is so quiet:


And then to my desk where I see this view:


Takes about 15 minutes unless I stop at 7/11 for coffee – which I always do.  But hey I figure once I get to 7/11 it’s like I’m at work because it’s basically “on” campus.  So I start my time when I get there.  Not that anybody cares.

Yea, I don’t have a lot to share these days.  I work, I sit in the chair, sleep then work again.  Not a very exciting life but I’m just resting while the universe is deciding my next move.  In the meantime here are a couple of DeLand fun facts:

  • There is grass here. You may not understand this, those of you with grass in your yards (I’m not talking about marijuana) but I don’t think green grass is native to Florida.  We had some in Palm Harbor and we had someone cut the grass but it never smelled like cut grass.  I love that cut grass smell as do most humans and here at Stetson I think they cut the grass every day.  I’m not exaggerating. And typically it’s cut in the mornings so everyday when I come to work I smell fresh cut grass.  It’s really a lovely way to start the day.
  • DeLand is the sky diving capital of the world. I’m not making that up.  See it’s on the Internet here:   Skydiving Capital of the World  I don’t really care about skydiving, nor do I ever ever want to go sky diving but it’s kind of a cool thing to be known for.  My work-mate colleague (Krystal) ran into about 30 people from the Netherlands who were here specifically to skydive.  Supposedly there is a place to watch – a restaurant I think (or a bar) and maybe someday I will find it and have lunch there and watch crazy people jump out of planes.
  • DeLand practices trickery. Well at least the DeLand Bakery practices trickery. So I showed you a picture of the very adorable looking Buttercup Bakery that I pass everyday coming to work and I proudly pass every day.  In addition to having the best looking cupcakes ever they have lunches so today I told Julia that I was thinking of going to the Buttercup Bakery to get a sandwich, to which she said have you tried the DeLand Bakery?  They have organic food there.  Well, you know I was expecting organic donuts with a couple of wraps or something along those lines.  Well, well, well, the DeLand Bakery is this huge (okay not like Whole Foods huge, but large) organic store. Like a Wild Fields.  Do you have those anywhere? Complete with organic produce and aisles of organic everything and in the back they have a salad bar – which is hot foods and then wraps, etc.  So I got for my lunch salmon, mashed potatoes, green beans, mushrooms, three salads (okay I’m just getting spoonfuls of each) but anyway most delicious lunch ever – and not a donut in sight.  Not one.  I have no idea why they call it a Bakery.  But what a great find that was.  And while lunch wasn’t the $5 that I would like to spend it wasn’t really that bad considering.  If I could get on the internet right now I’d google it up to see why it’s named the DeLand Bakery but I guess that will have to wait since I still have no internet.

This weekend, this loonngg weekend, before payday, I might go and explore DeLeon Springs.  They have a restaurant in the park that serves pancakes. It’s called The Old Spanish Sugar Mill.  See pics here: Pancakes!  What’s unusual about it is they bring the pancake batter to the table and have griddles built into the table and you make them yourself.  Probably not something to do by myself but it would be fun to go with someone and check it out.  I wonder how crowded these places will be. I was thinking of staying away from the beach, first to let my sunburn fade and also because it will be crowded.  My guess is that the Parks will be crowded as well.  See?  This is why I don’t leave my chair.

The internet is back on which means I can actually post this blog, AND get back to work. Good news, bad news.



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An Ode To Zenah

My little girl is graduating this week.  Wednesday to be exact.  I’m not going because really she is not my little girl.  But for 2 years she was.  And how are you supposed to just stop caring for someone like that?  I was with Marissa for 3 years when she went to Point Park. She sat at my desk 4 days a week for 3 years, as my work-study.  I remember the day she walked out of my office for the last time (as a student worker), the tears, the pit in my stomach, I can relive it on a dime. (I just saw her 2 weeks ago. She lives in Orlando. It’s good.) Zachary also used to stop in and visit when he went to Point Park and even though I knew I would obviously see him again, since he is my son, the day he walked out of my office after quitting school (the first time) I had that pit.  You get used to people ya know? And while it is true that I have not been with Zener this past year I can’t help but think about her graduating. People who know me, know how hard it is for me to get over a boyfriend (other than the dreams I’m still having about Howard, my high school boyfriend – I am sooo good at it now) so imagine me trying to get over these children.  It’s mind blowing to say the least.  I can’t wrap my head around it most days and have no idea how to process it. How did Mary Poppins do it?

So the little girl that I watched make the transition to this new school, new home, new family, who I watched go from sobbing about it to being so excellent at everything she tried, cheering for her at her LAX games, holding her up when she got hit in the head with a LAX stick bleeding everywhere, helping her through life with a shoulder to cry on (she rarely cries but would vent…often), literally she would put her head on my lap to watch TV, make BLT’s and cookies for, this little girl that I became so fond of is graduating from high school.  I couldn’t be prouder even though I’m not there.  She knows I’m thinking about her.  Who knows maybe she thinks of me too.

I have had to break ties a few times in my life over situations like this.  The first time was with Zachary’s cousin Aimee.  We were very close when she was a little girl. When I divorced Zachary’s dad, when she was like 7, I assumed we would stay close. But when I got pregnant with Jimmy, out of wedlock, well, her mother had another idea.  I had heard that Aimee and her mother were having arguments over wanting to stay close with me, she would have been 8 or 9 then.  So I backed out.  Right after I told her that I would always be there for her.  And then I let go.  Why?  Because it’s not right to come between a child and their parent.  It’s not right. Not at 8 years old.  I had always hoped that when she grew up we would reconnect but she has never reached out.  I’m sure she feels I abandoned her.  Why?  Because I abandoned her. Except I didn’t.  I just backed down.

I’ve backed down – but not completely off – with the Baker children as well.  I often think of Jorden and wonder how he’s doing but he wouldn’t dare go against his father’s wishes to keep me at a distance.  It’s an odd scenario isn’t it?  Imagine being those kids, or any kids, that have people they get attached to come and go into their lives. I had two parents my whole life, well I mean until my father died.  But my mom never brought anyone into our lives even after being widowed at 50 years old.  I remember when I was living in Miami at 21 years old my parents called and said they were getting divorced.  I sat on Doug’s lap, curled up in the fetal position, and cried like a baby.  Sobbing.  And then they didn’t get divorced.  I mean I was 21 years old, for heavens sake, but the thought of them divorcing was destined to ruin my world, I was sure of it.  I’m embarrassed to say that I didn’t cry like that when my dad died.  But divorce?  That was a different story in my mind.

I wonder how that has shaped me.  As a parent.  As a partner.  We all know I’m not good at the partner thing, well not good at picking a partner, but I like to think I’ve been a steady parent.  I do sometimes feel like I’m being punished for leaving my own grown children.  I left them to help this other family and in the process lost everyone.  Well you know, I didn’t really lose anyone, but I wasn’t around for anyone to take me to the Grand Concourse on Mother’s Day.  My kids didn’t have a mom to hang out with. I’ve abandoned my children.  I don’t know what I was thinking.

I don’t understand how when people die they say they have no regrets.  I have sooooo many regrets.  Starting back with high school.  I wish I was a better student. I wish I would have passed French.  I wish I would have finished college (in the 70’s).  I wish I would have practiced piano more. And that’s just the start. I don’t know what I wish I would have done differently these past 4 years but I would have done something differently.  I just don’t know what it is yet.  I do not regret knowing Zenah.  That is a given.

Well, I should take a lesson from the book of Zener.  Here is a person who has been faced with unbelievable challenges at every stage in her life and she never let it get her down.  She had told me in the past that she’s had no regrets.  Every challenge, even the death of her mother, was a growing experience for her – that’s what she said.  And now she’s graduating from high school – I’m sure with honors – and attending her first pick college – University of Florida.  GO GATORS!!  How can you not be proud of this girl, whether you know her or not?  She is an amazing person.  She will surely be a light force in the world.  She already is.

Ya know, Gainesville is less than an hour from me.  I wonder if she’ll mind if I show up with cookies….every weekend.


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God Save the Queen

My mother hates the Queen – you know the one in England. Are there other Queens? Well anyway, she hates that one. I have no idea why.  I’m like “have you ever met her mummy?” It’s like this irrational hatred, in my opinion.  But then again I’m only through Season 1 of The Crown.  And in Season 1 the Queen is very likable – I’d even say lovable.   As I watch this, before bed most nights, I’d have dreams with me as royalty of course. And then I wake up confused as to where I am (not to mention who I am). Mostly I end up wondering where my double or triple strand pearls are. YEARS ago, I had a dream that me, my sister, and Princess Diana were playing cards in a bedroom in a castle.  We were all sisters in some other lifetime, big dresses and all, big cold castle, and I looked out of the window high above the grounds to see my children playing in the gardens with the nanny then went back to playing cards with my sisters.  Often in the series, The Crown, the Queen looks out of the window at the children playing in the gardens.  It really gives me the chills..just like my dream I tell you.  Well anyway, I had that dream before Princess Di was killed.  It was a long time ago but I remember that dream.  Mostly I remember looking out of the window like she does.  Tonight is a TV special on Princess Di’s last 100 days.  I better watch and see what Sis was up to in her last moments.  After she died I had another dream where she came to me in the dream and told me she was ok. So you tell me.  I joke with my sister Kerry, in this lifetime, continuously about our nephews in England – always wondering if she’s paying attention to them.  She thinks I’m crazy of course.  And I am but what’s your point?

So today I had the full intention of going to the beach…and then changed my mind.  I wanted to walk on the beach and get some sun but I didn’t feel like making the drive.  So I just walked up town here, in the sun and shade and then binged on The Crown. Turns out I missed one or two episodes since I started watching somehow.  I watch on Netflix and turn off the TV when an episode is over, then the next night or time I’m ready to watch the next one I turn the TV/Netflix back on and it tells me where I left off.  Well, I watched on my computer today, instead of my TV, and first of all even though Netflix was saying “hi Lynn” it did not recognize where I left off – which fortunately made me go back and look at episodes and somehow I missed TWO of them.  Now how does that happen?  So now I’m wondering if I missed any of Grace and Frankie.  I started to go back through the 3 seasons of Grace and Frankie to see what I missed and then was embarrassed about myself, sitting here all day.  I decided to walk up to the corner store, to get off my arse and to get out in the sun again.  I briefly thought of jumping in the car and making the 30-45 minute drive to the beach but quickly opted for the short walk buying an avocado, a banana and a small $1 bag of mini Oreos.  I know.  Shut up.

Yesterday I ran errands, just like a working girl does on a weekend and ended up sitting in my yard.  I bought some bulbs during my errands, planted them, put the rest of the Virginia daffodils under a tree (in the ground) just to see if they might come up here in Florida, had my book and my phone, ready to sit in my yard and read in the sun.  I never got to my book.  I never got my face out of my phone.  I was catching up on Words with Friends, Yahtzee and some texts.  I think I don’t love my book enough to read it.  It’s called fly away by Kristin Hannah. The sequel to firefly lane. I just don’t love it enough.  I was thinking of trying to read today too.  Then decided to watch the Netflix.  Ya know?  It’s bad.  And now I’m blogging just to get out of reading that book.  What is wrong with me? I wonder if people will say that when my book gets published.  That they’ll want to do anything else but read it. (see how I did that there with the when?)

In other news, work is work.  I haven’t quit and they haven’t fired me.  I have no intention of quitting a job, ever again, so it’s a good thing I like it.  I like everyone I work with and although it’s only been a month I feel very comfortable there.  It’s not an easy job which is good for me personally and as with any university job there are challenges that are apparently industry wide (in higher ed) but at least I’m not surprised by them. I just keep my nose down, eyes on my own paper, shake my head and do my job. That’s all I’m going to say about that.  But I’m happy there and here’s a picture from my desk.

Yes I have a window!

My boss, who I love, sent me a weeks worth of Blue Apron – another one of those cooking box things…just because.  Purple Carrot doesn’t deliver to Florida.  I wonder why?  Anyway, so this week in my Blue Apron box I have lemongrass burgers, seared salmon and chicken with creamy couscous.  I love these box deal things.  I love everything about it.  The ease, the recipes, the directions, just everything.  The first night I made the lemongrass burgers and thought I died and went to heaven.  Of course I can make these on my own now, if I can find where they sell lemongrass stalks but goodness it was delicious.  My only complaint with the Blue Apron recipes are they have added sugar in them.  Like in Purple Carrot there was no sugar. Purple Carrot is also vegan or vegetarian. I LOVE sugar, so says my waistline, and well I probably don’t really need any extra of it in my cooking.  Even so, since Purple Carrot doesn’t deliver here, I think I might continue to get a Blue Apron box a month. I could just leave the sugar out. I feel like I’ve brought this up before haven’t I?  Well, just think of me here, sitting alone in my chair, in a town where I know nobody, binging on Netflix.  You’d repeat yourself too.  AND you’d probably buy $1 bag of Oreos too.

Here are a couple of pictures of my yard where one day there may be flowers.

Not a great picture with the shade but here is where I’m experimenting with flowers.

I also planted some vegetables over there by the fence (see pic below) that won’t come up because it’s too hot.

This back yard reminds me alot of my Fair Oaks house back yard. I was able to grow things back there – I can grow things here. I hope.

Views from my chair – Just look at that sky:

One of the things I spent my time researching on my phone was those raised garden boxes I thought I might put over there by the fence. But then the question is why?  Why raised boxes and not just in the ground?  Anybody? Is it just a craze?  A fad?  Or is there some logic to planting in a box and not in the ground?  Don’t we want the nutrients of the earth?  Well anyway, I was pondering that yesterday.  I shall continue to ponder throughout the summer because September is really when I should be putting seeds in.  Not in the spring like the rest of the world.

Tonight I’m having a salad with the bag of greens I bought at the farmers market on Friday night.  I walked over Friday night to our little farmer’s market and met Julia and Joe for a drink (ok I didn’t drink but I did sit a spell) bought lettuce and walked back home. Just like a resident. So I thought I’d save my last Blue Apron meal for maybe tomorrow night and tonight I’ll throw everything I have left over from the other two nights into one big salad.  Doesn’t that sound delicious?  And then…I’ll get back into this chair and get ready to watch Princess Di.  I will put on my single strand pearls for the occasion.


And here’s a random picture of my son (third from the left or 2nd from right) and his friends at a Kentucky Derby party.  They are all so handsome.  I love these boys.



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