Friday, October 31, 2008


My favorite blogger, Brody Harper, had asked us to"Be Honest" when he asked if we were going to vote.

I really meant to vote early. I really did. But for many reasons I can't even recall, it didn't happen. So, if I do vote, it will be on Tuesday with the rest of the procrastinators. I talked with my coworker Sarah today about the candidates and the issues we've got on the ballot (I really don't care a rats butt about the top office, the lesser of two evils is still evil and I can't get behind either of them) ...

Anyway, we were talking about how you know who's behind what issues. My friend Danny had Googled for information about them, and Sarah had used a state website. I was using but am no Googling for people in positions not on VoteSmart. Sarah's comment was that she flat out didn't vote for someone if they didn't have a website.

That is a brilliant plan I think. She made such a good point when she said "if they can't bother to let the public know what their positions are on issues, how then can they expect people to vote for them?" So I'm with Sarah. I've got my pre-ballot all highlighted and am ready to take it with me on Tuesday.

If I go.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Sunday, October 26, 2008

My Weekend In Bullets

Posts are always more fun with pictures, sbut I don't have any. Yet. They're on Joseph's camera. I borrowed this one from Stoney:

Here's the highlights of the weekend:

It started on Friday:
  • Left work at noon
  • Picked up Joseph - met Sheila in Carson City, leaving my car at a friend of Joseph's
  • Drove to Pleasant Valley Campground just North of Bishop, CA
  • Set up camp and helped Sheila make a MOST amazing meal
    • Shrimp sauted in garlic, with fresh tomato and avocado, all served over linguine )
  • Sat around the campfire until bedtime then crashed

Continued Saturday
  • Rise and shine at 7am ... Huevos Rancheros for breakfast (potatoes, eggs, salsa, cheese)
  • Off to Owens River Gorge to climb routes like this
  • Climbed a total of six awesome routes with Joseph as our belay slave
    • Pitstop wall
      • I led Low Octane 9***
        • I led it after her
    • Warning Signs wall
      • Sheila led Warning Laser Beam 8***
        • I led it after her
      • Sheila led Watch For Rocks 8***
        • I led it after her
      • I led Boating Prohibited 10a***
        • Sheila after me
  • AWESOME lunch of pita sandwiches
      • We TR'd Batting Cage 10c*
        • #5 for each
      • I led Wonka 10a**
      • Sheila TR'd Oompa Loompa 8**
  • Mile and a half walk up the road back to the parking lot and the car
  • TAILGATE party of beers and chips
  • Keough Hot Springs S. of Bishop for a nice soak and shower
  • Dinner at "Las Palmas" in Bishop
  • Got gas and pulled away from the pump with the hose still in the car
  • Back to camp for more campfire and BED
Wrapped up on Sunday:
  • Rise and shine early at 7:00
  • AWESOME breakfast burritos heated over the fire
  • Broke camp and headed for Mammoth Lakes on a scouting mission
  • Found a great climbing area pretty much IN Mammoth Lakes, we can go there with our husbands and climb half a day and hang with them the rest of the weekend.
  • Drove through the June Lake Loop and found another great area to camp and paddle canoes with our husbands
  • Back to Carson City for my car and back home (after dropping Joseph off)
TOTALLY AWESOME weekend!! Life is Good.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Dummy Check

  • Climbing pack
    • harness
      • prussic
      • belay device/ATC
      • belay/rap gloves
      • bail biners
      • PAS
    • helmet
    • shoes
    • chalk
    • quick-draws
    • Nalgenes
    • ROPE
  • Camping
    • Tent
    • sleeping bag
    • sleeping pad
    • Camp kitchen
    • Cooler (Sheila has food)
    • Water
    • Firewood
    • hatchet
    • newspaper
    • Chairs (2)
    That should cover it, aside from the normal clothing stuff. Yeah, so if you think of something I missed, it's too late cause I'm OUTTA HERE...

Wednesday, October 22, 2008


Fun Toy ... maybe I'll remember to do this regularly to see what I've blogged about. What's on my mind:

Create your own Wordle

This one is pretty cool, I copied my "favorite quotes" text and threw them in the Wordle and look what's the biggest:

What Do You Do?

What do you do when you want to write about something, but you know the (be they ever so few) people that read your blog, and that inhibits what you write?

Do you write it anyway? And having asked that, I now worry that someone who I'm not even thinking of is going to think I'm writing about them and that they're inhibiting what I write. But if I were to write what I have on my mind, the one person who thinks "oh, she's talking about me" would realize "Oh, she's not talking about me at all, it is about ______." And that other person, who really would be the subject of the post, has no idea.

Sometimes I write stuff that I know someone else is going to read, and I'm completely okay with that, with their knowing what's going on in my crazy little head. Sometimes writing is a great way to communicate something that is difficult to talk about. But then there's stuff that's difficult to talk about because you've beat that horse to death enough already. Having beat the horse to death though, doesn't really make the subject dead. The issue is still out there, unresolved.

Ugh. Sometimes my thoughts are very confusing.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Positive Post Tuesday


On Sunday Pastor Pete spoke of "Friendship brings value to Life" (sermon video) and I've been thinking about it a lot. In my post the other day I mentioned how after Church I'd gone and met my friend Joseph and we palled around together for the afternoon.

Joseph is a friend I met at a job we both had 5 years ago and as each year passes our friendship is strengthened. I value Joseph.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

On Top Of The World

Remember me saying I want my picture taken here at the top of Half Dome in Yosemite? And I said something about maybe not at the top of Half Dome specifically, but no doubt something.

Well I got my wish. Romy and I climbed "West Crack" on DAFF Dome and she took this picture of me at the top:
Here's one of us at the top of DAFF Dome with Fairview Dome directly behind us. Fairview is where DAFF gets its name to begin with: Directly Across From Fairview.

You'll have to excuse the helmet head.

Weekend Brief ...

Yay! What a great weekend this has been. Yesterday I got to go rock climbing outside on real rock with my good friend Hans and Sheila!

Sheila and I have only been out three times this entire year. We took a weekend road trip to Owens River Gorge back in May (with Danny, Dave and David), then took a day trip to Indian Springs and then another weekend trip to Clark Canyon at the end of June.

The Clark Canyon trip was with our friend Joseph (who doesn't climb anymore because his knee hates life) but he goes for the fun of our company. My Alison and her friend Geoff joined us on that trip and we had a great time. But we haven't been out since then if you can believe that. (if you know me and my climbing, you'd know what a tragedy this is for me).

I've been so busy this summer going here there and everywhere other than climbing and have been looking forward to another trip to the Gorge with Sheila (and Joseph this time, Danny and Dave can't make it). Then climbing with Romy got me very excited about climbing again and I couldn't stand waiting for that next trip. So when on Thursday at the gym Hans suggested we go climb I leapt at the chance, and Sheila came too. YAY!

Climbing yesterday was with Hans, a friend that I haven't climbed with in over a year. It was really nice to catch up with him. After climbing, Hans had Mark and I over for dinner.

And then there has been today ... (in bullets?)
  • Romy sent a link to pictures from our Tuolumne trip.
  • Attended the 11am service of church and really enjoyed the sermon. After the service I went back to the "newcomers welcome" and met the associate pastor who runs a "Women of Excellence" bible study group out in my neighborhood. I am quite excited to start building my own community in faith.
  • Then I went and met my friend Joseph. When he opened his door I announced "I need food, want to go with me?" So off we went for some delicious authentic mexican tacos at Beto's
  • Off to Sierra Trading Post to buy something light yet warm for climbing in ...
  • Off to REI to get a flashing red light for the back of my bike so I can ride to work without getting run off the road (at least they'll see me before they hit me right?)
  • And now home to do some final organizing for NEXT WEEKEND where Joseph, Sheila and I will be heading back to the Gorge. YAY.

Monday, October 13, 2008

Life Carries On

Title to the song is I Grieve but Life Carries On should be a sub-title.

It was only one hour ago
It was all so different then
There's nothing yet has really sunk in
Looks like it always did
This flesh and bone
Is just the way that you were tied in
But there's no one home
I grieve...
for you
You leave...
So hard to move on
Still loving what's gone
They say life carries on...
Carries on and on and on...
And on
The news that truly shocks
is the empty, empty page
While the final rattle rocks
Its empty, empty cage...
And I can't handle this
I grieve...
For you
You leave...
Let it out and move on
Missing what's gone
They say life carries on...
They say life carries on and on...
And on
Life carries on in the people I meet
In every one that's out on the street
In all the dogs and cats
In the flies and rats
the rot and the rust
In the ashes and the dust
Life carries on and on and on...
And on
Life carries on and on and on...
Life carries on and on and on...
And on
Life carries on and on and on...
Just the car that we ride in
The home we reside in
The face that we hide in
The way we are tied in
And life carries on and on and on...
And on
Life carries on and on and on...
Did I dream this belief
Or did I believe this dream
Now I can find relief
I grieve...

Commenting On Fear

Brody Harper posted What's Your Fear and asked "So what’s yours? What’s one of your worst fears?" and my comment reply ended up far too long for a comment so I cut/paste it here and made it a post.

I've was widowed at age 35, and if I let the fear run away with me, I can break down in sobs worrying that it will happen again. I don't want to live through that grief again. But I pretty much know I will have too. On that note I would rather go first, and yet to go first means leaving Mark, and I honestly don't know how he would cope.

I had my kids to get me through the first time. My mantra was if I don't take care of myself, who will take care of my kids? My Alison was 8.5 years, and Josh was almost 13. That first year was most definitely the hardest year of my life. But, by the Grace of God, we made it

Even though I was not Christian at the time, I was very much aware that I was carried through that year by the Grace of God. God carried me. I think of that poem "Footprints In The Sand," and I know God carried me because so many people who loved me prayed on my behalf.

And knowing that, I'd rather Mark go first. I have God to carry me, Mark would be alone :-( and I really don't know how he would cope. He would have people who love him praying for him, and God would carry him, but I fear he wouldn't recognize or acknowledge that. He'd reject it. And he'd die. And we wouldn't be together.

I don't worry so much about my kids - well, that's only a partial truth. But they're adults (almost, Alison is 17) now. Kids are supposed to lose their parents first. Wow, losing my kids is another fear ... Boy. Let's stop this before I get further carried away!

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Abundance Of Thanks

Today we are going to my Canadian girlfriends home for Thanksgiving. My initial question is still unanswered (because I'm an egotistical ignorant American?) about what do the Canadians give thanks?
But, I've decided that it really doesn't matter. I am taking this day, as all days should be, to give Thanks for all of the ABUNDANCE we have in our lives.
  • I have Mark for my husband, who as my Alison reminded me recently loves me like no one else

  • I have two beautiful children, Josh and Alison, both in their appearance and character

  • I have both of my parents alive today

  • I have Lois, my mother-in-law from my first marriage

  • I have my in-laws, Ian and Brucie, from this marriage too, for which I am truly grateful.

  • I have three beautiful daughters, Amber, Natalya and Alyssa, through Mark

  • Albeit cluttered, dusty and not terribly clean, I have a warm house to shelter me from the coming cold weather

  • I work for an incredible boss

  • I have enough money to pay all my bills, and stash some away for vacations

  • I have the cool car in the family

  • And the biggest, saved for last because it's greatest:
  • I have GOD
There is so much more I could add, but this is my foundation.

I am making some vegan delightful Thanksgiving foods for Alison, because Sheila will have an over abundance of food for the rest of us.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Climbing With Romy

Ah..... I can't even begin to tell all about my trip. It was truly amazing. My thanks to AlpineDave for having great pictures of West Crack on DAFF Dome in Toulomne Meadows - Yosemite National Park.

Romy took a bunch of pictures but I'll have to wait for her to get back to Boston to get them from her. Then I'll post them.

There's one of me standing next to her at this belay just below the slot that spat me out like sour milk ... no pictures of that one since Romy was far above on belay.

We have pictures of us at the top of the route too, and she took some of me on the free rappel down ... completely awesome. Can't wait to post the pictures!

Saturday, October 4, 2008


I want my picture taken here, at the top of Half Dome, Yosemite National Park:

These boys have grown a lot in the past 2 years since this picture was taken - but they've been to and climbed a route called Snake Dike on Half Dome two years before I have! I don't know that I'll actually climb Half Dome - but I know I'll climb something in Yosemite!

I'm heading out today with my girlfriend Romy for a 3 night trip to Yosemite for some rock climbing. Romy's coming in from Boston for a friends wedding the following weekend, and she's invited me to join her climbing. (and she just called me while I've been composing this post!) I am so excited I can't stand it! Think of me, and send warm thoughts cause it's gonna be cold!

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Paying Attention (still)

Holy Cow. My morning devotional talked about the bible being the "Living Word" because certain scriptures come to life and take root within in you. You can hear what nobody else hears ... This morning, like most mornings I prayed and asked God to open my eyes to his Word in my day. But Holy Cow - I got smacked upside the head with this today.

In reading my blogs I've come across two that really were jaw dropping. After reading the first, I marked it to save, so I could come back later and think more on it. And then I came across the second one and just had to write about it now. What I read meant something to me that would mean nothing to someone else.
The first was My Utmost for His Highest ... The place for humiliation.. In this post the bit that jumped out at me was about being up on the mountain top.
"We see His glory on the mountain, but we never live for His glory there."
I had thought about this on my drive to work (read the blog at work, sorry Stoney)how when I was hiking in the mountains, how close to God I felt, and how I want that on a daily basis. The post went on
Look back at your own experience and you will find that until you learned who Jesus really was, you were a skillful skeptic about His power. When you were on the mountaintop you could believe anything, but what about when you were faced with the facts of the valley?
You were a skilled skeptic about His power. Yes I was, and now I am in the valley of humiliation.

Then I went and read Been Thinking About ... Are they afraid of us? and was again smacked in the head.This particular post hits home regarding Revelations ... precisely where I am on my journey. Revelations is what pushed me away from God so many years ago.
Is it possible that they just hear frightening noise if they don’t also see credible indications of the love of God? Can we fault them for assuming the worst? Can we blame them for thinking that the noise is part of a scare-tactic to get their name, their money, or even their lives?
Ah, thank you God for opening my eyes, allowing me to see.