Keeping current in wellness, in and out of the water
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If we were having coffee I would invite you to sit poolside under a shade structure to sip some hot coffee or tea. Today is the last day of my spa vacation at one of my favorite destinations, Desert Hot Springs, California. Join me as I completely relax here before driving back to Tucson tomorrow. This week has exceeded my expectations. The weather cleared to make my drive smooth and easy. I zipped across the desert with almost the entire highway to myself. My room has a view facing the mountains, which I love. It has snowed in the higher elevations, which makes the peaks stunningly dramatic, especially at sunrise and sunset.
My spa routine involves a very early morning dip in the pools to exercise and stretch before the rest of the hotel guests start to get up and move about. It is dreamy to have all the pools to myself while the water is still in the shade. I come back to the water for a couple of hours at the end of the day while the sun sets. I had a couple of spa services, and went to Palm Springs (about 15 miles from here) to go to my favorite restaurant, do a little shopping, and attend an event. This is an ideal restorative break in my mind. I have no agenda, and follow my own personal whims. I have traveled all over the world with groups, family, and friends. Each group experience has a different fun aspect. Solo travel, however, is really my cup of tea. This hot spring, and this tiny funky town, is my ideal place to recreate. I will drive back to Tucson today, stopping on the way to see an old friend who is in Quartzite, AZ for the gem show. This will round out my time off with a touch of social activity. I feel completely refreshed to return to work and household chores tomorrow. This retreat has restored my well being and good mood. My spa retreat is a total success.
I have been slipping into a very lazy spell with this blog, writing very little. I hope I have rebooted my brain with some new ideas to bring forward during my stay here. I want to get back to a daily writing practice, which I love. I want to write more poetry and some short fiction, which requires time and practice. Taking this time to get perspective has brought to my attention that writing is one of my major thrills in life, so I need to put regular practice into developing it. I have not been to this coffee party for a while, so I look forward to hearing how you are doing with your writing. I hope you have not been in a slump like me. So, join me in the bubbly champagne pool, and let’s order another round of coffee. This is the perfect place to catch up on what is new with you. I have a few hours before I drive home.
Please join this weekly digital coffee feast, hosted by Eclectic Ali. Read write, or add your comments here. Thanks, Ali, for inviting us all to the table.
If we were having coffee this Christmas morning I would invite you to sit back and enjoy the fire in the wood stove and the candle lighting around the room. I am up early to enjoy this predawn time, as usual. I am in a good mood because I realize how wonderful defining this year of 2017 has been. I did not plan to do a major change this year, but I have certainly accomplished one. I sold my extra red estate and pared down the size of my possessions in order to fit into my condo. This has been extremely liberating and satisfying. I am left with much less stuff, which I love much more.
I am serving coffee, and an assortment of teas, including some iced green tea. We have celebrated all month, and today have no plans to go out or do anything. We are not giving gifts because we just spent months deleting items from our possessions, and are not in the mood to fill up our space with stuff again. We are truly sated.
I did go on a shopping spree this fall, all of which has upgraded our lifestyle. I did little frivolous spending. Most of the spree was spent on very practical home improvements. I wrapped up the spree by buying a new garage door opener last weekend, because mine was on it’s last breath, about to break forever. I was so happy to replace it before it caused a tragic inconvenience in my life. I continue to take a box to the Goodwill each week to fine tune my stuff, since editing is forever. I have new underwear, socks, wifi speakers, and Alexa can now answer the phone on speaker. I have one more planned expenditure with my real estate profits, a hot springs vacation in February. I have not traveled much since I started my job last May, so I am planning a reward for myself in California. I will spa down for a few days, then stay in Joshua Tree in an air bnb. I have already booked my favorite hot springs hotel, but there are many highly desirable air bnb rentals near the Joshua Tree National Park. The decision is part of the fun for me. Are you going anywhere this winter? Do you like planing, or like to take off and see what happens? I like a good accommodation reservation and lots of free time. That is the perfect combination for me.
My blogging is slowly becoming regular once more. I changed may schedule at work, and have started doing my writing before I go to my job. This is working a little better. I do appreciate the return of the weekend coffee share because I enjoy keeping up with the group and the writing you are doing. Please join us on the weekends to share happenings and feelings over digital beverages. Eclectic Ali is hosting this movable feast, which includes a diverse group of writers from around the globe. The party is always digitally delicious. Merry Christmas to all! Thanks for stopping by.
If we were having coffee this weekend, 17 December, I would say life has been very festive indeed since we last met. I am very pleased to see that Electric Alli has revived the tradition of sharing a beverage and some personal news each weekend. This open invitation to stop, linger, chat, and share digital drinks is the perfect spot for a holiday party. Do drop in for some fun. Read what is new with the group, or share your own post here. The movable feast is on the move once more. Please join us.
I have a fire in the wood stove today to take a mild chill off the house. We have not really experienced any winter here yet, which is confusing all the plants. Although I sold the property with my big citrus trees I still have a large Lisbon lemon and a small Meyer lemon at my condo. Like many other trees in Tucson they bloomed several times last year, and then dropped all the fruit because the weather has been so bizarre. I am hoping this year will be better, but so far it is ridiculously warm. Please relax and let me make you one of my holiday teas. I have gone wild ordering flavored teas for the season, so I probably have exactly what you like. I can brew some coffee if that is what suits you.
I would tell you our lives have been super festive and bright since I sold my real estate and downsized to fit our belongings into our condo. It is a relief to be free of the tax burden and all the extra junk I had stored in the barn. I have gone a a little shopping spree to celebrate, acquiring upgrades for the home. Yesterday I had to buy a new garage door opening system, but I feel fine about it because I had the money to pay for it, and it will last for the rest of my life.
Our company had a holiday party this week. Since it was a workday Bob was too tired to attend. I was pleased that my neighbor Heidi was available to go at the last minute. The party was in a super location above the city, with a view of the lights. Food and drinks flowed lavishly, and every guest got a gift. We all had a great time, including Heidi. This happy situation was followed up by a generous bonus for every employee on Friday. The mood at work has been very festive. We are all having very happy holidays.
We began our holiday party by attending the Fiesta de Tumacacori on the first weekend of the month. It was wonderful. I love the mission and the natural setting next to the river. We stayed at a cool air bnb, and attended the gallery openings in Tubac for luminary nights, then enjoyed two days of street food and Mexican folkloric dancing, cum National Park Service, cum Catholic church. It was everything I hoped for and so much more. I think I will need to go every year in the future.
The next weekend we attended a magic show at the Scottish Rite temple downtown Tucson. Both the show and the amazing historic building were great to see. Outdoors after the show we enjoyed bands and food trucks set up for the Second Saturday downtown. The nights are still very warm, and downtown is decorated for the season, so we went back down last night for the Holiday Parade of Lights. It was pretty corny, but lots of fun. We discovered a new restaurant we love and enjoyed a great dinner while the parade finished and the crowd dispersed. It was another excellent trip to downtown for fun. We have been living it up without any regrets lately. I hope your season is turning out as well as ours.
I have not been writing as much as I would like. Starting tomorrow my work schedule will change. I hope it will restore my previous diligent writing practice. At least I know I will write a post each weekend to keep up with this talented and diverse group of writers. Happy holidays! Thanks for stopping by.
If we were having coffee in Tucson this weekend I would invite you to sit down in the living room with a cold iced tea. It is lovely weather now, with a little bit of chill at night. You probably think of this as summer weather, but for us it is a big deal to have highs below 100. We get all excited when “sweater weather” arrives, sometime in October. I have switched my hours at work in order to be there early to harvest outside. This is a fun change of pace. I am, however, having an issue with lack of ambition when I arrive home. I was finishing all my fitness activity and writing before going to work in the morning. That way I can relax when I get home. Now I am all about relaxing when I get home, but have not finished my own daily tasks. I must apply some discipline to make this shift change work. I am slacking on everything but my job.
The clearing out of the barn across the street is going very well, with only a few more personal items to move and review. I have thrown away loads more useless, outdated paper files. Just this morning, I found something I really wanted to find. I bought some amazing double sided cashmere fabric in Paris about 15 years ago. It has been in a plastic box for the last 10 years, with a couple of little pieces of cedar wood to repel moths. Lo and behold, the cedar works and the fabric is much more than I thought it was. I am lucky it is all still in perfect condition. Now that I have kept it so long I must find the perfect use for it, but not so perfect that it takes another 10 years to decide. I am thinking of a long reversible wrap skirt. I have one in silk, and think it is classy. My new motto is use it or ditch it for a clutter free life. It is time for this heavily hoarded fabric to get to work clothing me.
If we were having tea I would tell you I am behind on all my office work, which includes blogging. I excuse myself during this time because closing my real estate deal and finding space for all the stuff I want to keep is the most important task I will complete all year. I think once this job is done I will gratefully return to by diligent practice of writing. My financial load will be lighter, and my office will be better organized. The one task I have completed ahead of schedule is the payment of my real estate taxes. I am delighted to be paying about half of the tax bill I have had for the last 10 years. This makes me feel super happy and free. In 3 weeks my erstwhile tax burden will be another family’s future home. Everyone is a winner in this deal.
If we were on our second glass of iced tea I would ask how life and writing is going in your world. I hope you are more focused and productive then I am these days. I am listening to David Sedaris read his book, “When You Are Engulfed In Flames”. This does inspire me to try creating memoir again. His stories make me laugh out loud. When I finish his book I will dive into an eighteen hour course on the history of ancient Rome. Listening to different kinds of books on my audible account makes my work day zip by quickly. I get a lot of “reading” done while doing my job. There is a contest to produce a 30 second promotional video for audible telling how you use it. The winners will be awarded new Volvos. I am seriously considering entering this contest. Have you tried audio books? They are my new favorite thing.
Thanks for joining us for this digital beverage party. Join us to read, comment, or share your own week with the crew. Follow the hashtag #weekendcoffeeshare on twitter to join the party.
If we were having coffee this weekend in Tucson I would still be pouring iced beverages for both of us. We finally have a bit of a cold front easing us into the fall season. We had a wacky weather year, and many of the plants are confused. One of my jasmines is blooming again, but my lemon tree dropped all the fruit. I am selling my most productive trees, grapefruit and calamondin, in the lot across the street. I am sure I can strike a deal to buy some of the citrus crop because there are way too many for one family to handle. The sale is taking place before real estate taxes are due, which is a fabulous financial bonus. The family buying it are interesting and cool. They seem like they will make great neighbors.
If we were having iced tea I would try to persuade you to take home a few books, or some art work. The emptying of the barn is taking place for real now. I have a month to do it, but hope to finish before schedule because I have a trip to Phoenix planned for October. I will attend my first cannabis conference and expo at the convention center up there. There are two days of speakers and trade show displays. Vicente Fox, former president of Mexico, will be the keynote speaker. I am sure I will learn a lot about the state of the industry.
Our outdoor crop is being harvested now at the grow. I think it is really fun to work outside for a while. I get tired of the fluorescent lighting indoors. It is nice to have fresh air and natural light for a change. We have a shade cover to protect our skin. The flowers are big and tight, so the growers can take pride in the final product. It is a happy time for all participants. The harvest will continue for months, I think. Perhaps the best news about work is that a tortilla company has bought the building next door to ours. They will set up a tortilla factory there. We will soon be the best smelling neighborhood in the world.
Please allow me to pour you another glass of iced tea while you tell me how your writing is going. I have little to say about my own. My excuse for low levels of production is that I have to focus on the barn cleaning before all else. I have done it for a couple of hours today, and will return to the task later this afternoon. I believe when it is all finished my muse will be happy and inspired to create. I have been listening to books on audible more than writing anything myself. Are you feeling inspired lately?
The linky is down in New Orleans this week. Our hostess Diana at PartTimeMonster graciously holds the party when her internet is working. Use the hashtag #WeekendCoffeeShare on twitter to find the action this week.
If we were having coffee this weekend in Tucson I would invite you to relax with some iced tea and chocolate covered dates stuffed with walnuts. I scored yet another 20 pound box of Medjool dates at my produce pick up this morning. I have been giving dates away for weeks, and now I have about 30 pounds. They are perfect for winter, and will last a long time. I am looking for new date recipes. Sit down and tell me how your week has been. I hope all of those who have been hit by the storms are safe and dry. Our national recovery will take a long time. My heart goes out to those who have been displaced.
The week went quickly for me, with not much writing. I worked last weekend to make up for the day had to miss for grand jury. I was excused. The people who manage the process, from the registration staff, to the bailiff who guides you and tracks you by your badge number, to the judge, are all extremely professional. The judge was very clear in all his explanations, and the entire mega situation, with people reporting all day long, is handled super efficiently. We all had bar codes to track us, which I suppose enables a smooth and accurate accounting of all that happens. I was impressed with this little corner of government function. It works really well for all involved.
I am extremely glad not to have to dedicate 2 days a week to the court until the middle December. This morning I got the good news that I have an offer on the lot I have for sale across the street from my home. I accepted the offer and now have until October 19th to clear out my possessions from the lot and the barn. I had begun the job, but now there is a solid deadline to finish organizing and decluttering. I hoped to sell it before I had to pay taxes on it again, and it looks like I will meet that goal. I can’t wait to be finished downsizing. It is liberating to jettison unneeded stuff.
I wrote a short piece of fiction this week that was related to getting rid of family heirlooms. I am sure this came from my effort to relieve myself of the silly burden of files and papers from my dead parents finances, etc. This is the theme in my life at the moment. Marie Kondo has worked her magic into my very soul. I believe that tidiness is true happiness. I am out to prove it. By 19 October I will be a much lighter being. I think it will inspire my writing to be free. Stay tuned, and we shall see. This deadline is the best gift for me now.
Thanks for stopping by for a chat today. This moveable feast and digital coffee klatch is hosted each weekend by Diana at PartTimeMonster. Please join us to read, comment, or write your own coffee share post about what is happening in your life and writing.
If we were having coffee this weekend I would invite you to relax on this cloudy day with a long glass of iced tea. I am drinking white blueberry now because it is refreshing. The news cycle is anything but refreshing, so I hope you have some personal stories of good cheer. My own good news is that I will be working my regular shift processing and trimming weed on Labor Day. I love my job and feel very lucky to be allowed a lot of flexibility with my schedule. I hope I will not need to call on that flexibility to serve on a grand jury for up to six months, two days a week. I could work around it, but I sincerely do NOT want to do it. I don’t think I can be impartial.
I must report to the court on Wednesday morning to convince them I am not the person they want. The process involves hearing testimony from cops to decide if there is probable cause to indite for felonies. I have the absolute worst relationship with the TPD and do not believe cops because of the direct experience we have had in our neighborhood. I do not fear police brutality, but am totally afraid of police mendacity, which I think takes place all the time at all levels of authority. I just don’t trust them to have the public’s best interest at heart.
My writing is still sluggish in terms of productivity and on the dark side. I wrote a poem about piracy this week that I continue to examine myself to figure out the deeper meaning. I wrote about places I have been in the past, but changed the century. I think I need to try this device on longer pieces. I did a tea review because I am truly loving the white blueberry. I started telling true stories on Facebook live at my desk. I bought a piece of software called ecamm live that enhances the experience. For instance, you can create a scheduled livestream and notify your peeps when it will be live. I plan to do a few each week in a regular time slot. I have not fully examined or used all the cool features of the software. I have only done two stories, but am compiling ideas for the future. There is a Skype feature to do interviews. I think it will be a fun new tool to use.
Halloween will be extra fun this year because my car is “volcanic orange” with black details. When the weather cools down I have a large wardrobe that matches my car. I am still working diligently on trimming down my possessions in order to sell my lot with a barn full of extra junk in storage. I have made good progress in the garage, and some in the office. I have tossed an unbelievable amount of old and useless paperwork, some of which belonged to my long dead parents. There will be more discovery of my ridiculous hoarding when I excavate the barn, I am sure. The task of tidying is not so difficult if taken a little at a time. The process of discarding useless stuff is rewarding as well as revealing. I just need to remain diligent until it is all gone.
Can I offer you another glass of iced tea? Tell me how your muse is treating you these days. I sincerely hope none of the coffee sharers has been hit by Harvey. It is good to know Diana is dry enough in New Orleans to host the party this week. Join us on the weekends by reading, commenting, or submitting your own coffee share post. Thank you for stopping by this week.
If we were having coffee this weekend in Arizona I would invite you to chill while I serve you iced tea or coffee. Our state has hit the big time in the news this week with our rally in Phoenix and yesterday’s pardon of Joe Arpaio. The pardon was highly symbolic to the people of Arizona, who put up with all the benefits and detriments of living on the border. We know about illegal immigration and dope smuggling at the border because they are the traditional businesses that rely on slack or corrupt law enforcement to thrive. The attention drawn to the Mexican border these days is all about the wall and the people living here without papers. It is rare to hear anything about collaboration with Mexico, although most of the produce we eat comes from there. The border is not a simple issue, and the wall, in any form, will not stop the cartel from serving their customers up here. They catapulted a giant bale of weed into downtown Douglas right after Trump visited his wall in Yuma. You can’t say they don’t have a sense of humor.
This week a giant bale of weed landed in Douglas, AZ, formerly famous for a long running underground tunnel beneath the border. It is impossible to explain to those who have not lived near the border what it is really like. Don’t believe any simplistic explanation of our situation. It is centuries old, and not going anywhere soon.
If we were having coffee or tea I would ask how your life and writing are going. I wish all those in hurricane country an easy time. I hope you will stay dry, and keep all your possessions in tact. I wish our country some kind of respite from all the crazy politics and anger, which do not seem to be diminishing. My poetry and fiction are still kind of depressing, and I think it is all about the current events on my mind. I do find that it is a creative source, but wish the trauma would settle down for a while.
I hope you are feeling productive and pleased with your writing. I appreciate your visit today to our controversial state. If you have written a coffee share post please share it here. Diana at PartTimeMonster hosts the party every week from New Orleans. You can join us by reading, position, or commenting. Thanks for visiting this week.
If we were having coffee this weekend I would offer you iced tea and some succotash I just made. I have been listening to a wonderful audio course about this culinary and cultural history of humanity. I heard the part about American colonists adopting crops from natives very quickly because many crops they brought from England did not grow over here. Succotash (a word borrowed from a native language) is a stew of corn, beans, onions, peppers, and tomatoes. It can be made with only corn and beans if need be. I realized I had those groceries on hand in the fridge so I whipped up a batch. It is a heavenly, and truly American dish. Help yourself. I am working on reminding myself of all the noble and beautiful parts of having been born in the US. Succotash is one of those.
If we were having coffee I know many of you live in other countries and are wondering what in the world is happening to the government in Washington, DC. As taxpaying citizens, believe me, we wonder even more than you do. Some people choose to stay away from news of current events, and honestly I am happy to be working with millennials who virtually never discuss anything current or political. I don’t think it is because they lack sympathy, but they really lack all the information. I am loathe to bring up any news at work because it is all so shockingly bad. Who am I to bum them out by letting them in on current events? I really like my colleagues at work. Maybe ignoring current events is the secret of their charm.
I wrote this week, but was still a little lame about production. I did a poem for Sue Vincent’s #writephoto on Thursday. I wrote a factual biography of my great-grandfather who fought for the Confederacy in the Civil War. I also have ancestors who fought for the Union and even worked on the underground railroad. I am not in any way attracted to these “historic monuments” causing all this dispute. I don’t think they were such a good idea in the first place, since Americans tend to be fairly ignorant of our own history. We just don’t need images to glorify people and events nobody even understands. I know this is not true for all of us, but I am frequently appalled at the total lack of knowledge about geography and history I encounter in Americans.
The one category in which we are still held in some esteem is comedy. SNL is the world leader that demonstrates that we do still live in a free country. Some of our freedom is being used to endanger and incarcerate part of the population. Thank God we still have Weekend Update. For any of you who have not seen #sheetcaking by Tina Fey, please enjoy this peek at our still thriving sense of humor. If we don’t laugh we will cry.
Please join us for the Weekend Coffee Share every week. Our hostess Diana brings us together from New Orleans her blog PartTimeMonster to share our feelings, our progress, and our digital beverages. Thanks for reading, writing, or commenting this week.
If we were having coffee this weekend in Tucson I would invite you to relax with an iced tea. I am enjoying a white strawberry tea that refreshes me in this muggy weather. Please help yourself to apricots while we kiss this summer good bye. The stone fruits (peaches, plums, apricots, etc) are a symbol of summer. Along with berries they have the lively colors and flavors that remind us of outdoor dining in the warm season. At this time of year I buy the best looking stone fruits at the market and savor the last of the crop from this year. These apricots are luscious.
If we were relaxing with tea I would tell you my week went well. I fit in dermatology as well as dental appointments and continued trimming down and organizing my possessions. I excavated loads of paper files to destroy, and a few to save. I can’t believe how much useless paper I have stuffed into the spaces in my house. This is all changing, and making me very happy. I listed the real estate, so vacating the barn and dealing with anything stored over there is a signal I am really ready to sell. I found the appraisal on the land I had done when I inherited it in 2008. I have lost a huge amount of imaginary money on this property, and payed Pima County about $15,000 in taxes over the time I have owned it. I will be pleased to give up the tax burden and end the madness. It probably will not sell overnight, but I am ready if it does.
Again this week I trended more into poetry and fiction. I enjoy the more creative forms. I think all of my writing needs practice, in every form. As long as I continue to work on it I am satisfied. I have started to dream up fiction scenarios in my spare time, which is new for me. Usually I am all about finding more facts. I have been invited to a mermaid parade next week in downtown Tucson. I do have an outfit I could wear. It has made me think about getting some photos and covering it as a real news story, and then writing some poetry or fiction using the images. That could be fun. I have done little photography lately, and the event promises to be a visual delight.
Parent, student, teacher, or not, the whole world feels the back to school season. Here in my neighborhood we welcome back the U of A students and faculty along with many other locals who leave in the summer because the can. School and university traffic is noticeable on the roads, but then again so is the economic impact it represents. I don’t mind the students, but I saw my first set of ceramic pumpkins in a grocery store display this week. Hold on with the pumpkin spice and the Halloween gear until at least September. Let’s enjoy some Indian summer before you start playing Christmas music. How is back to school season for you, gentle reader? Do your local merchants jump the gun on holidays like ours do?
Join the digital beverage party every weekend at Diana’s parttimemoster blog. Catch up with news from writers around the world over your beverage of choice. Read, write, comment, or check #weekendcoffeeshare on twitter