Monday, September 12, 2011

Some perils of aging...

So, Gramma is cranky at a couple things today, one of which I suppose is, in the great scheme of things, unavoidable. The other is just the system doing its lovely job of suppressing the effusiveness of small boys.

So. Perimenopause. According to the interwebs, this is the period (HAHA) of years (!!!!) preceding menopause. I'm there, folks. I'm there. Ugh. This is not fun! THIS part could go for 10-15 years?! Good grief!!! I'm already 45!!! How the fuck long am I supposed to deal with this crap?! And I have no intention of using the hormone shit. I'm actually looking forward to not having a period anymore. Why in fuck would I want to take shit that not only increases my risk of breast cancer, but keeps the blood flowin'? No fucking thank you!!!

But let me tell you... this is getting annoying... the damn periods are getting heavier and longer. LONGER!! Like, for instance, this month's super-fun time. First day of was last week Monday. Morning. Early. It is now this week Monday. Though not exactly doing what one could call 'flowing', little lovely watery bits of leaking are most certainly still going on. Count 'em folks... This puts me on day fucking EIGHT!!! What. The. Fuck. Seriously.

In other news, just saw a post from my daughter... apparently a quote from someone at school... "Your son (that would be MY grandson) is showing early signs of ADHD. Maybe a physician could help?" Okay. Saw that one coming. He is indeed a high-energy kid. He's a 5 year old boy! He's fucking supposed to be a high energy kid!!! Yeah, he's not the best listener, but ADHD?! Ummmm... no. There's nothing hyperactive about his energy level, and there's nothing wrong with his attention span. He's not easily distracted. If anything, he's the opposite! He's funny, charming, empathetic... and very very focused. He's definitely on his own agenda. He has to understand the 'Why' of a request, the reason something needs to be done. It needs to make sense TO HIM. Ohmigosh. Independent thought?! From a kindergartener!? We better drug that right out of his system NOW!!!

Ugh. I really hate public school.
And perimenopause.
They both make me extra cranky.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Verrrr verrrr sleeeeeepy

Today, Gramma is cranky because she is tired.

Seriously. Ugh. It's 8:43 Pacific Time, and I've been awake for almost 6 hours. It was effing HOT yesterday, and I kept sticking to myself and the bed and everything else I touched (Hubby) all night. And not sicking in a nice, fun way. Not that there is a nice, fun way to stick to oneself or one's partner when it is so hot that just getting within 6 inches of another mammal creates heat waves. Hubby wasn't sleeping well either, so we both just kind of moved around a lot, trying to gain purchase on a breeze from the fan and some fucking oxygen.

By the time it cooled off, my brain just wouldn't go for any more sleep. Now, on any fairly normal given day, this wouldn't be too much of a pain in the ass, as I generally could just plop myself down at some point in the day to nap, or run a nice tepid tubby. But today I must actually be fairly perky - there are several location that want people to ACTUALLY SHOW UP to apply for jobs! Holy crap! So, I gotta get all spiffed up (inasmuch as I am capable at any time to do so) and go trek around town some via le bus and see if I can't get meself some gainful employment so's that I can not feel so unproductive! Not to mention, a bit o' cash never hurt nobody, right? Also a couple really good, actual, solid leads on some online income, so that is helpful and good.

I actually am also cranky that I didn't get to see the Republicans go at one another last night. Haven't found my glasses yet today, so I haven't indulged in much reading yet. I hope there's some good video! I needed a good laugh, and would have enjoyed listening to Bachman and Perry sound like dumbasses. Some of today's mini-headlines definitely have me intrigued... somebody, I think it said it was Perry, compared people who eschew climate change science to Galileo? Kinda confused... I'm gonna have to look that one up.

Okay. Cranky Gramma has now sucked down enough coffee to see fairly straight. I shall thusly go forth to dishes doing, breakfast making, shower taking, dog emptying/filling, and, eventually, job applying foring.

Ya'll have a great day! Enjoy the last bits o' summer. Fourteen days left...

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Summer adventure

So, folks. Long time no post. It's been an interesting summer!
When last we met, we were about to embark on a move to Missoula, MT in our little RV. And we did! We split from Grand Rapids on May 5, and headed north to go over the big blue bridge, across the U.P. and over the top portion of the country. The first night we made it as far as Comstock Park (about 4 miles - LOL) because of our late start and other random errands, and then it got dark. Jim's beginning cataracts don't allow for night driving anymore, and no way in hell was I driving that thing.
Next day, we did in fact head north, made a good distance, and had a lovely time!

Goodbye, Mitten of Michigan! 
Lake Michigan from the Mackinaw Bridge

Brief leg-stretching on the north shore of Lake Michigan
In Wisconsin, south shore of Lake Superior

Connor with his guys...
Diggin' the RV
Althea and her load

So, that was the first day or so. We lunched by Lake Superior, Connor ran about and had a good ol' time. Rilo was kinda freaked out by the whole thing, and Stanley-the-Cat, well, let's just say he was still less than thrilled about the whole being-in-a-box-in-a-moving-vehicle deal. He was also unamused by his harness and leash. Unlike the rest of us! LOL!

One of the most interesting things, I thought, was how North Dakota is NOT fucking flat!! Who knew? It's not exactly hilly per se, but man there is some serious elevation gain in that state! The oil fields were amazing to see. Cities of campers and RVs, the only place we encountered where one couldn't park an RV overnight in a WalMart parking lot. Just so many people flocking there for the work on the oilfields, there was no possible way to accommodate them all, so WalMart there had to disallow the overnight thing. Muddy, rainy, miserable, thousands of people working those jobs, driving giant new trucks, wearing denim or Carhartt overalls covered in this gray, icky-sticky mud. Yikes!!!

We got into Montana, spent a night in Great Falls, then took Roger's Pass over the Continental Divide. On the way up, we saw a wolverine waddle across the road, and it proved to be the first in a plethora of awesome and stunning wildlife sightings. Made it over the pass no problem, despite Jim's misgivings. Ha! I knew it'd be just fine. I swear, the man is not happy if he has nothing to worry about! Stopped in Lincoln for a few minutes, got gas, Connor got a Sponge Bob ice cream for breakfast (this is how to make and almost-five-year-old reeeeaaaaalllllly happy), and we headed on into Missoula. Gorgeous drive! Absolutely love that country! The mountainy rivers, the pine trees... god, I was totally swooning over the scent of pines on the air during our stop! Kept the windows down the whole way in, and just basked. I LOVE the Rockies beyond words.

We got into Missoula on a Wednesday. We hung out at the Dragon Playground, because Connor loves that place! We rode the carousel, we just... hung out and enjoyed for a couple days. Then Cassady and Andy came up to Missoula from California, and picked Connor up on his birthday. 

Oh boy! Icky cupcakes with Spiderman rings! 5 year old heaven!

Carousel ride with Mommy and Gramma
The whole fam damily

And then Connor went to California to live with Mommy and Andy, and Gramma and Papa got to learn how to be sans kid. Sooooo....

We drank some good beers.
We went to Lolo Hot Springs, and soaked in the awesome water.

Across from our camp

Doggie under the picnic table

Mah shadow at the edge of Lolo Creek

And there's the creek running right behind Athea

Sooooo beautiful!

Then we went meandering about...
This is a trek to and around Flathead Lake. Man, it is so beautiful up there! The Mission Range? Be still my heart.

We spent a few days up there. Fished, hiked, sat at water's edge and listened. I love the silence of the woods, the breeze through the pines, the call of water birds in the early hours, the scent of pine, an unbelievable (for one from the city, who has had opportunity to forget) blanket of brilliant stars. 

We wandered on from here, and spent a couple days at Swan Lake.

Yeah, I really like Montana a lot. I miss Montana a lot!
Then we went and just hung around Missoula for a bit, which was lovely. I like that city. There are pretty rainbows against dark gray skies.

So anyway, we had this lovely summer adventure. But, well, we kinda freaked out, didn't stay pat and really give it a solid chance to see what we could make happen. And we pointed the buggy west again, and landed in Portland. 
Now, for a big-ass city,  Portland is pretty damn nice. Lots of trees, big parks, good coffee and food and beer. But, it's a big-ass city. So it is dirty and noisy. And crowded. We scored a decent little apartment in a pretty cool neighborhood, but it is again the hustle, and the consumption, and the go-go-go get-have-take mentality that makes me feel all yucky inside. The wealth disparity is so glaringly apparent. Lamborghinis driving through neighborhoods while people sleep in bushes with their shopping carts bicycle-locked to parking regulation signs. These are the things that make me cranky. Being in the midst of this makes me feel a deep sense of anomie, a marginalization that I did not feel in Montana. That I do not feel among the trees and birds. The air is often fairly thick, though not as much so as the midwest. There are no thunder storms. Few stars are visible. And even walking in a beautiful wooded 5000+ acre park includes freeway noise. There is no quiet place, no respite. There are beautiful places, though! 

There are lovely walking paths, and the International Rose Test Garden is here. Wow is that something to see!

And, of course, on clear days, gorgeous views of Mount Hood. But still, really, one ginormous volcano does not equal the Rocky Mountains. Not by a long shot.

So, I think we've had an amazing summer! Lovely adventures, great food, some interesting travels. But I think that, when all is said and done, Montana was the right call. We needed this interlude to really get clarity on it, and remember the why of the move itself.  So, as the job search (for me) continues, along with the projects I am concocting for some income-generation, it is with renewed motivation. Out of the city, and back to the woods. It was right, it was good, I felt like I belonged there. With the eagles and the cougars and the mountain lakes and rivers. I felt alive and at home as I've not felt in years, and I feel its loss fairly acutely. Meanwhile, though, me and Portland will continue on in our civil interactions, and I'll take away lessons from this city as I have from everywhere I've been. I'll soak up the sun, not worry about the coming rain, and take life as it comes - day by day.