Friday, December 31, 2010

What a beautiful day we have had here. The sun was shining and the temperatures have been in the mid 70's. We are lovin' it. Only about thirty minutes left of 2010 here on St. Croix. Being the furthermost spot in the US (Territories that is) we will be the first to ring in 2011. I stopped making resolutions years ago, instead I like to set goals. Probably not a whole lot of difference but somehow goals sounds more positive to me, there was always something foreboding about resolutions. Anyway...I still have a lot of goals to work on, a lot of self improvement and a lot of dreams to realize. It really isn't hard, you have to be willing to take that first step.

I was surprised when we were in Idaho at how many people said things to us about being astonished about our move to the Virgin Islands. It really doesn't seem so astonishing or spectacular to me, you just have to think it and do it. It really helps to know that your doing what your are supposed to do.

Life is a gift and everything that we are given has a purpose. I truly believe that in the scope of eternity, this life, that we make so much of, is just a speck and yet everything we do here determines where and how we will spend all eternity. Like my daughter says; "make it count". The most important thing in this life are our relationships, or how we treat others. Do we really love them as we love ourselves?

My prayer is to realize my full potential. To be more in tune with the Spirit. To be living where and as I should be. I also pray that I can help others in any way they may need it.

I have such a love for my family, especially my children and grandchildren. Having had this past Christmas with Rachel, Macy and little Rozalyn was most special and gave me a new appreciation for them. It's been awhile since we have had a baby in our family, so being able to spend time with Rozalyn, holding and cuddling her was really special.

Being so far away, Rick and I have really learned to depend on each other in ways that we haven't since we were first married and I like it. I would say that we are closer than ever. I could not believe how much I missed him when I was in Idaho for three weeks without him. I'm really grateful for the opportunity to realize this.

So for 2011, I say; "bring it on, I'm looking forward to it and hope it will bring much happiness and prosperity for myself and my family, it wouldn't be bad for the whole world".

Thursday, December 30, 2010

In the immortal words of Dorothy; "there's no place like home". It was exciting to finally get home. The trip was grueling. We actually outsmarted ourselves this time. The original plan was to have Rachel, Macy and Rozalyn drive us down to SLC on Tuesday, where we had rented a hotel room. Our flight was to leave at 10 to 1 in the morning, so we planned to arrive in SLC around 4:00PM, relax, play in the pool with the girls and then have the hotel shuttle take us to the airport. Rachel and the girls were to spend the night and drive back to Idaho in the morning.

Well... the weather report was for a monster storm heading into Idaho and Utah late Tuesday and early Wednesday they were calling for up to a foot of snow. We couldn't bear to think of Rachel having to drive back in any storm, let alone one like this, with the two little girls, so we opted to take the Salt Lake Express (the bus) down to the airport. it was a last minute decision and probably one of the better ones we made, although the good byes were tearful it happened so fast nobody had too much time to think about how much we would miss each other.

We got to our hotel about 3:30pm had a nice relaxing evening and then headed out to the airport. The check-out clerk at the hotel looked a little sideways at our "6 hour nap", but, Oh well... Plane left on time, made all of our connections and all in all the trip went real smooth but we did not land on St. Croix until almost 7:00PM the next day, so from the time we left Idaho Falls it was almost 28 hours. We both slept on the ride from SLC to Atlanta, and then even a little on the flight from Atlanta to San Juan but we were still exhausted. We had long layovers in both Atlanta and San Juan. In Atlanta we found a plane leaving two hours earlier and asked if we could get on it, we were told that because it was an International Flight and we had checked baggage we could not, it's a rule that you must fly with your bags (that is unless the airline screws up). Since I'm not a terrorist, it was a bummer but all in all probably a pretty good rule, because I really don't want to fly with the terrorists bags (not that it seems to matter to them).

We had such a nice time with the kids. Christmas was wonderful. I was having a hard time adjusting at first (I must admit, I was pretty cold most of the time) but once I gave up the complaining and settled into enjoying all the time with the girls it was great. Once Rick got there on the 18Th of December the time seemed to fly by. He was disappointed that he had to spend so much time at the storage locker trying to organize, find and get things ready to ship. We decided that he should have done more of that on the front end and left the last few days to play with all of Macy's new toys, but then there is never enough time to play with the grandchildren.

Macy is growing up so fast and when I think of how much bigger and stronger Rozalyn will be the next time we see her I get kind of teary. Time marches on and waits for no one. Our next plans to get together are for a trip to Florida in April (Disney World for Macy's 5th birthday) trying hard to get it together, it will be less expensive for each of us to only come half way and we have a free two bedroom condo in Orlando. We gonna try real hard to make this work out.

We truly had so many wonderful experiences in Idaho during this trip. I was able to attend the Stake Conference of our old Stake and it was wonderful. It was incredible to be in that conference with about one thousand Idaho Saints, the Spirit was so strong, I felt as though I was wrapped in a warm blanket. Also, got to attend both the Rexburg and Idaho Falls Temples. Visited our old Ward in Palisades for two Sundays and on our last Sunday we had Rozalyn's Blessing in Rachel's Ward. Rick blessed baby Rozalyn and it was beautiful.

the best thing about the trip back to Idaho was the complete confirmation that we are right where we are supposed to be here on St. Croix. I was a little worried that either Rick or I would become all nostalgic and feel like we wanted to be back in Idaho, but except for missing our children and grandchildren we know for sure that we were done there and it really was time to move on. We have so many wonderful friends and it was great to visit with some of them, but we are really hoping that they will visit us here so we can give them our undivided attention, in Idaho the priority is our family.

In the States the Holiday Season is on the downside with Christmas over and tomorrow being New Year's Eve, here on St. Croix the Holidays last until Three Kings Day, January 6th, so things are still in "Full Swing", it's exciting to be able to be a part of that. Looking forward to the festivities this weekend and next week. Came home to enjoy the wonderful Christmas cards and letters of our friends and family, trying to decorate a little and keep the festivities alive in our home. Rachel had such a beautiful tree and did such a wonderful job of decorating her home, I didn't miss not having any of it in ours.

It's late and I'm tired but tomorrow I'll download my pictures and post some here. Goodnight Moon and also my dear daughter and sweet granddaughters!

Monday, December 27, 2010

Today is our official last full day in Idaho. The plan for tomorrow is for Rachel, Macy and Rozalyn to take us to SLC, we have booked a room so we can all relax for the evening, then we will take the shuttle to the airport for our 1:00AM flight to Atlanta, the girls will spend the night and return to Idaho in the morning. Hopefully this will happen, due to a big storm in the Northeast things seem to be a mess at the airports, we will e checking later if this will affect our flight to Atlanta.

Macy and I are spending the morning at home. Rick is at the storage locker trying to get things ready to ship. Don, Rachel and Rozi went to Rexburg for Rachel's six week check-up. Hard to believe that Rozi will be six weeks old next Monday and that Rachel is due to return to work next week. I do so wish that she didn't have to go back. I witness her being a wonderful mother, and I know how hard it will be to keep up with everything with two little ones, not to mention putting Rozi in Daycare at such a young age. I know that she doesn't want to leave them, so I'm sure she will figure something out.

We have had a great time. Christmas with the little girls was so much fun. I know I have said this before, but since Rick got here the time has just flown by. We really didn't get to do everything that we had wanted but we did spend most of our time just hanging out with and playing with the kids (not to mention the eating, I'm almost anxious to get back on a diet, I'm really anxious to get back to working out, have been way too sedentary).

Going too try to make the most of this last day, it's got to last for awhile. The plan is to get together in Florida in April or May, I think I can make it that long.

Sunday, December 26, 2010

We had a positively wonderful Christmas Eve and Christmas Day. It is so marvelous to see Christmas through the eyes of a child. Macy was so excited, it was contagious, we were all a little silly and excited by the time we went to bed on Christmas Eve and I was up at 4 am and could not go back to sleep.

Wonderful dinner Christmas Eve and our traditional Cookie diet on Christmas Day.

Today Papa blessed little Rozalyn in the Ririe 3rd Ward (don & Rachel's home Ward), it was beautiful, she looked like a little angel. Macy wanted to stay for Primary so Don and Rachel took Rozi home and Macy, Papa and I stayed. It was really nice. One more experience to being with so many saints, only makes me more anxious to return to our little Branch. I want to do my part that the Saints on St. Croix may one day have the opportunity to sit in meetings as I have for the past few weeks.

We are definitely on the down hill side of this visit. The time has really gone fast since Rick got here. It will be hard to leave the girls, I wish all three of them could come with us. We'll just have to start planning for the next visit.

Friday, December 24, 2010

Never officially got dressed today. Rachel and I spent the day mixing, baking and making. Mixed up some cookie dough that will need to be baked tomorrow, make some rice krispie treats and made the Polish pierogi for our Christmas Eve dinner. Then Rachel made fancy cupcakes to take to friends for a Christmas treat. We had a dinner of leftovers from the turkey dinner we had last Sunday and Rachel, Don and Rozalyn went off to deliver cupcakes, while Macy, Grandpa and I watched Santa Clause III. A nice day all in all. It was fun to work on baking and cooking with Rachel. It was nice not to have to do those things by myself.

We are pretty much ready for Christmas, it feels good. I'm really hoping that we can relax tomorrow and on Christmas. Some years it has felt so hectic, this feels pretty relaxed. I have done a lot of complaining about the weather and about being cold. It was real hard for me to be away from Rick for so long, but now that he is here and Christmas is a day away, I'm real glad we came and can spend this time with the kids. Both Macy and Rozalyn will grow up so quickly that I want to capture every possible moment with them. I wish I could take them back to St. Croix with me.

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Busy day finishing up some odds and ends in town. Had lunch with some good friends and spent a little time catching up. Everyone in Idaho Falls seems so stressed, I know it's two days before Christmas but you can smell the stress. Best to stay home and enjoy Christmas. We are finished with all shopping and that kind of stuff. Tomorrow is cookie baking day and playing games with Macy. Rick probably needs to spend some time at the storage locker but hopefully I can avoid that altogether.

Tonight Rick, Rachel, Macy, Rozalyn and I went to see "Yogi Bear", it was cute and fun. It is great to see Macy enjoy a movie as much as she does. Made for a late night but hopefully we can all sleep in tomorrow.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Settling in to enjoy Christmas with the family. It finally seems like Christmas. The tree is decorated, the presents are wrapped and we're getting ready to bake cookies. We have been eating way too good, I can see a diet in my future. Actually what my future needs is some serious exercise. I miss my pool time and can't wait to get back to that, not to mention that I really need it.

Rick and I went to the Rexburg Temple today, it was good. I really felt at peace, somehow it wasn't relaxing, not sure what that was all about, but I felt the Spirit and I did feel at peace. We had a nice time. It was good to be in the Temple together.

Talked a lot today about making it real. It is so important to have the Spirit with us every minute of every day. It is so important to keep making forward progress and getting better each day. It's not easy, but it sure is worth it.

I now have a more clear picture of what we need to do. I hope we can be valiant and prove our integrity and move forward. I pray constantly for my family that they too can progress in the Gospel and keep moving closer to our Heavenly Father. Learned some things today about gratitude and how important it is. Also, learned just how much I have to be grateful for.

Monday, December 20, 2010

Rick finally did get here,late Saturday night. The shuttle from Salt Lake was running a little late because the weather had turned ugly. Rachel, Macy and I went out to Rigby to pick him up, of course, he told me the wrong place and neither Rachel or I had taken our cell phones, so he had to get the shuttle driver to bring him over to the place he told us. It was a little bit of a circus, but we got him.

I have now officially been moved down a notch on the Macy scale because she has her Papa. She is so excited that Rick is here, that she wants to show him everything and do everything with him the first day. The three of us did go to church together at the Palisades Ward. It was their Christmas Program and we had a nice time.

I had the realization that I have offended some of my Idaho friends by not being thrilled to be back here. We all have to remember that "one man's ceiling is another man's floor". Rick and I both feel that the seventeen years that we spent in Idaho were wonderful, but we are done here. Other than coming back to see our children and grandchildren and some friends there isn't much here for us. It is time for us to move on. I have to admit it is a special experience for both of us to be able to come back and have that confirmed. There have been other times that we "moved on" and sometimes there would be a little nagging doubt, especially when things weren't easy in the new place, but I hope that this confirmation will get us through the "hard times" because we know it was time to move on and we know that we are where we are supposed to be.

Now it really feels like Christmas and it's a good thing because it's the 20th of December. My shopping is done and all but one or two of my presents are wrapped, we need to start baking and cooking but I'll leave it up to Rachel when we begin that. I'm furiously working of Rozalyn's blanket for the Baby Blessing, which will be on the 26th, trying to finish it up before Christmas, but other than that I'm in pretty good shape. This is the first Christmas in my entire life that I have not been in my own house on Christmas, but you know home is where your heart is and mine is definitely with my family so I guess in a sense I'm home. I thought it would be weird not to be in my own place for the Holidays but it ain't so bad.

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Friday, our day started early. We had to get up and make cupcakes for Macy's Dance Class Christmas Party. Made the cupcakes ran around to get everyone ready and out the door on time. Dance class was fun, Macy is so into it. Santa came and even danced with the girls. The cupcakes were a big hit.

Next up wrestling with the storage unit to get my Christmas wrap out. It was interesting but we did get one more thing accomplished. Now off to Wal-Mar, finally got out alive and with a few dollars left. Stopped to feed Rozalyn and off to Johnny Carino's for our "lunch out with the girls". It was fun put by this time we were all pretty tired.

Back in the car with quick stops at two stores, then we're all into Sportsman's Warehouse. Well it's official Rozalyn hates Sportsman's Warehouse, she started screaming in there and nothing would comfort here. That got us out of there pretty quick. Just because we haven't had enough we decided to go into the other Wal-Mart in Idaho Falls (two in one day, I can hardly stand it), by this time Rachel and I were beyond tired and being pretty silly, of course that's contagious to the kids so were were all real goofy. Finally on the road home, where Don had to have leftovers because we were still full, then we all fell asleep trying to watch a movie.

Exciting day, right, but we did have a good time together. Just waiting around today for Rick to get here. He is supposed to arrive tonight in Rigby at 10:15pm, a long day for him, but we will all be glad to see him.

Unfortunately, yesterday I had two phone calls with bad news, I want no more of that. sure does put things in perspective at this time of the year.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Man, I hate people who lie. then I really hate it when they try to make it your fault that they didn't tell you the truth. There is no excuse for bad behavior, people.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Finally made it to the Temple last night. It's sad that I have been here for two weeks and this is the first time I was able to go. Being dependent on others for a car or a ride is a humbling experience, one that I'm sure is good for me. A friend and I went to the Idaho Falls Temple, it was very peaceful and familiar again I felt wrapped in the Spirit. I must admit that I had the rewarding experience of feeling that I could not wait for the day that I could stand in the Temple with my daughter and I really felt that that day would come.

Just spent the day at home with the girls yesterday, it was pleasant, I am hoping that we can get out and do something together, we'll see how everyone is feeling.

Last night on our way home from Idaho Falls it was snowing and blowing, small drifts where starting to form in Rachel's driveway, just a reminder that it's still winter here, even if I has been pretty mild since I arrived. Got a hair appointment today, I kind of hate to spend a few hours in the salon but I must admit I really need it.

Last night Rachel finished decorating for Christmas, so it really feels like the Holidays are coming. Rick will be here Saturday and that should make things complete.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Trying to get my blog done before Macy got up this morning. I didn't make it. She just came out of her room, so I'll have to make this short and hopefully sweet. Last night Rachel, Don and Macy decorated their Christmas tree, I watched and held baby Rozalyn. They did a real nice job. I'll try to post some pictures tomorrow. I have to admit I felt a little blue watching them decorate the tree. This will be the first Christmas in 59 years (my entire life) that I was not in my own home, it feels strange. It will be better when Rick gets here because then I'll have my home with me. It's good to be with family at these times, but it's hard to be so unfamiliar.

It looks like another cloudy day. I think I'm vitamin D deprived. It is amazing to me that I lived for so many years enduring winters like this ( with days on end of not seeing the sun). I guess you don't know how bad it is until you move away from it.

Looking forward to going to the Temple tonight. I thought it would so easy to get to the Temple, once I was so close, but it has proven not to be so. Hopefully once Rick get here we will be able to go a couple of times.

Monday, December 13, 2010

I guess the week caught up with me yesterday, I was exhausted. I was kind of trying to take a nap, but got a phone call, then Macy got up, then I realized that it was late and I should call Rick. Some days go by so fast. Rachel and Don went to a movie yesterday afternoon and took Rozalyn because they couldn't find one that fit between her feedings, Macy stayed with me.

Yesterday was Stake Conference in the Ririe Stake. The Spirit was so strong you could feel it envelope you. I was absolutely overwhelmed with all of it, but then when we stood to sing the intermediate hymn I turned and looked behind me (some friends had saved me a seat in the third row) and I was completely overcome by being in a room with so many Latter Day Saints. Some of the things that we took for granted for so long. The speakers were incredible. The Stake President of only one year, President Foster, is a friends of ours and the kindest, most compassionate man I can think of, needless to say his talk was wonderful. All of this made me all the more anxious to return to my little island and try to share some of that Special Spirit that I felt here in Idaho.

When I talked to Rick later in the day and he told me about the Primary Presentation in the St Croix Branch, it made me all the more committed to work harder to bring the Spirit to the Saints there, so they can someday have the same experience that I had yesterday. It will happen, I know it, we just have to work hard on ourselves and be patient. Last night as I was falling asleep and thinking about the day, I felt my Saviors love wrap around me like a warm blanket, it was another incredible experience.

Woke up this morning with incredible siatic pain in my left side, it was hard to get up off of the "little bed", but I couldn't do it fast enough to get some Ibuprophen, sitting on a hot pack now and it feels a little better. Not sure what the plan is for today. Rachel has to take the baby to the doctor later this afternoon and I'm not sure if she wants me to go with or if she wants me to stay home with Macy.

Have plans to go to the Temple with a friend tomorrow, finally. Rachel seems to be doing pretty well and if she can go to the movies she can be alone for a few hours while I go to the Temple. Actually, tomorrow I'm going in the evening with a friends who works during the day, but I have another offer to go later in the week in the afternoon with another friend and I think I'm going to take her up on it.

Rachel and Don put the lights on their Christmas Tree last night, and "it's starting to look a lot like Christmas" around here. I have wrapped all of my packages but still having a hard time getting in the mood. I suppose that's because I'm away from home. Rick will be here on Saturday, so that should help.

Saturday, December 11, 2010

I can't believe how stupid I have been. For a long time my motto has been "Attitude is Everything" and here I have been having a bad attitude, well as soon as I realized that, I started to turn it around and things have been better. Yesterday, I took Macy to her dance class, it was fun to watch her, she is so into her dance. Then we went shopping in Idaho Falls, there were a couple of things that I was looking for and I had gone everywhere (all the stores that we don't have on St. Croix) anyway, yesterday Macy and I ended up at K-Mart and I was able to find everything I needed, Go figure. I promised her lunch at McDonalds, so we went and had a nice lunch. It was a very pleasant day.

This morning her parents went out to do horse things, so I was here with the girls and we had a fun morning. Macy wants to do everything I do and be with me all the time. I do love it, but I also hope it won't be hard for her again when I leave.

One week from today Rick will be leaving to come to Idaho. I can't wait, I really miss him. Actually I'm a little surprised at how much I miss him, must be the fallout of being so together for the last six months. I have come to realize that we were really done here in Idaho. Rick thinks that we probably stayed at least 6 months longer than we probably should have, but that's what comes from being stubborn. I keep telling people that we are in St. Croix because that is where we are supposed to be at this time in our lives, and I really believe this to be true, but now I also know that we were done in Idaho. It was a wonderful place to be for 17 years and the last 7 on Antelope Flats in Swan Valley being a part of the Palisades Ward were awesome but it was time to move on. Strangely, it's a real comfort to know that. I miss some of the people terribly and hope that they will visit and we can stay in touch but I don't miss living in Idaho and I figure we probably won't ever be back, to Idaho that is.

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Went with Rachel, Macy and Rozalyn to see Tangled today, it was spectacular and we had a nice time. Went to do a little shopping afterward and that was a mistake. Some days it seems that no matter what I do, I do it wrong. I go on and on about how tightly wrapped people are here and that everyone seems really stressed but I'm starting to think it's me. I know that the first thought is always that is must be the other guy, but the reality of the situation is I'm the misfit. I don't seem to even understand what people are telling me or what I am trying to tell them.

I'm going to try real hard to stop complaining and just "grin and bear" it, I really do believe that once Rick gets here I will feel better, at least someone will understand me.

Thinking today how important it is to have the Spirit in or lives, I have been struggling to feel that here. Once again I know that's my fault. It really is hard for me to maintain that. Must pray harder and be more diligent.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Just another "just shoot me" day in Idaho. I wanted to have pictures of the girls taken, especially Rozalyn, in her blessing dress. I was hoping that Rachel could have a nice collage made up, like the one she had of Macy. Trying to avoid the "second child syndrome". Anyway, I suggested we go to Sears and have them done, just as we did with Macy. What a disaster. The little girl who was the photographer didn't seem to know what she was doing, we had to suggest poses and keep the kids happy. In the end, she did get some nice pictures but the cost was exorbitant. Rachel was so frustrated or something, she didn't get the collage and the pictures we did get, although nice were not exactly what I was hoping for. One more thing that Grandma wanted to do and have workout that was a bust.

Had trouble getting through on the phone to Rick tonight, the cell service with Sprint was not good at Rachel's house. Yesterday it was great and today crap. I did manage to tell him that I think we got out with our lives just in the nick of time. I have realized that I can no longer live the way people do here. It is incredible. The gray and cloudy days are getting to me. I have to look for the positive, I am enjoying the girls. Rozalyn is so precious and Macy is a lot of fun. I have to just focus on that and enjoy my time with them.
My friend from Swan Valley, Carol Gallup, called me last night and asked if I wanted to go to town today and do some shopping with her, I jumped at the chance. We didn't leave until late morning, so I could be sure I got up with Macy and that all was well with Rachel. We shopped right on through lunch and I got all of my Christmas shopping done, except for Rick. Boy, does it feel good. I was getting nervous about finding the things that Macy wants, but it's finished. Now if I can pick up the few things that I want for Rick and one more small thing for Rachel and Don, I will be completely and totally done.

I have to admit, while shopping at Toys R Us a young sales clerk was so helpful, she took me from aisle to aisle helping me find everything I was looking for. Makes me take back my comments about nobody being helpful.

It was amazing what Carol and I could get accomplished in a few hours. We managed to make it into four different stores and get everything we needed.

Spoke with Rick tonight and he sounds pretty lonely. I have to admit that I really do miss him too. We have never been apart for this long, or this far apart before. Rick reminded me that at least I'm with family he is all alone. On well only 11 more days and he will be here.

Tomorrow we are taking the girls for pictures and to see Santa. It should be fun. Macy is so excited. Have to admit, I am too.

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Well here are some observations that I have made since I've been back in the states. There is a lot of stress in the air. You can actually feel it just going about your business. People are not relaxed and they are not friendly and helpful to one another. One of the first things that we noticed when we moved to St.Croix was how helpful everyone was, here people don't seem to want to get involved.

Here is an example: Late Tuesday night at the Salt Lake City Airport, while I was waiting for the shuttle from the hotel to pick me up a lady and her two kids were also waiting to be picked up. The kids were getting impatient and said to the mom, "where is he," Mom replied, "I'm not sure he has got to be here somewhere", so the kids said "call him", Mom then says, "I can't my phone is dead". I'm thinking that's easy, I take my phone out of my pocket and say to the lady, "here use mine", she was shocked. So she says to me, "are you sure?" "Yes I told her, I have unlimited coverage, so it's no big deal, just call". She did and couldn't get her party, but the thing that really took me back, was the fact that she was so shocked that I would offer her my phone.

Today as I was doing some Christmas shopping with Rachel, you could literally feel the tension in the stores. People were definitely stressed. We were in Kohls, and they must have been having some gigantic sale, because it looked like Black Friday, there were lines at the check outs and people everywhere. We didn't have any particular experiences with people but nobody is courteous and they really seem to be out for themselves.

Now the really sad part is that I find myself getting anxious and feeling stressed just being in that environment. I start to get impatient and really would rather not talk to people. Fortunately, I'm still at the point that I feel it happening and can "snap out of it", but I'm wondering how long does it take to become second nature. I don't like it.

I'm homesick, I want to be warm and I want to feel more comfortable out in a crowd. It's funny, because when we first moved to St. Croix, I didn't feel real comfortable. I wondered how long it would take before that would happen. I didn't really notice it happening but apparently it did, because I feel more comfortable there than here.

Rachel told me yesterday that people keep asking her when we're coming back, assuming that our time on St. Croix is real temporary or some kind of a lark. I explained to her, again, that we have no "exit date" and for all we know we might stay there forever. I wonder why people still haven't taken our move seriously.

Also, I thought that once I was back in Idaho, I would slip right back into old habits and maybe feel homesick for Idaho. Well that has not happened, I'm looking forward to spending Christmas with the girls and having our family together but there really is nothing here for me but my daughter and her daughters. Well that's all I know for tonight, I'm babysitting and I'm tired and would like to go to bed and read. Macy is down for the count but I have Rozalyn in her swing and I don't want to leave her alone in the living room so I guess I'll stay up and wait for Mom and Dad to return.

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Been a little out of commission when it comes to posting. I'm borrowning time on Rachel's computer so it's not always convenient and I have been wiped out (last night I fell asleep at 8:30 while we were watching a movie). Finally caught up on sleep last night, did spend the day running around with Rachel doing some shopping and running some errands. Don and Rachel went to a movie tonight and Grandma got to stay home with the girls.

I have to admit poor Macy is having a rough time adjusting to her new baby sister. Probably she is having a rough time adjusting to not being the center of everybody's universe. I have seriously been trying to give her most of my attention, but tonight when Mom and Dad were gone I had to spend more time with Rozalyn and Macy was not impressed. I feel pretty bad for her, but at the same time she has got to adjust. It's rought to be four.

I guess it's time to recount the trip. I was so stressed but I ended up being pretty preoccupied during the flights that there wasn't much time for stress. We left St Croix a little late but not enough to make any difference. I sat next to a nice young woman and we chatted it up the whole trip. Visited with some nice folks in the San Juan airport so that time flew by. I got my seat changed to an aisle seat but it was at the very back of the place. We were ready for take off, right on time, when the pilot said we had to go back to the terminal due to some mechanical failure. They got the problem fixed and we were on our way only one hour later, but since I only had an hour between flights in Dallas, it didn't look too good for making my connection to Salt Lake city. I was flying American Airlines from St. Croix to Dallas and then switching to Delta, American had booked the entire itinerary so I'm not sure why they switched me to Delta, but they did. When we got to Dallas and hour late they were calling for all passengers who were going to Salt Lae City (they had a van on the tarmac to take the passengers to a plane) I started down the stairs lugging my carry on when someone noticed my itinerary sheet that said I was booked on a Delta flight and he says, "this is only for American Airline passengers, you can't go", I was then told that I had to go back to the gate to get rebooked. When I got to the gate they said, "why didn't you get on that shuttle?" so they proceed to tell me to got to the gate that this SLC plane was leaving from and said that they would call them and say that I was coming and to hold the plane, well it was way across the airport and I'm running up escalators onto a train and then down escalators to find that gate and Oh yeah, the plane had left. I went to the next gate and they clicked on their compute for about ten minutes and then said that they couldn't help me and I would have to go outside security to the ticketing desk. So I went down another escalator outside security to ticketing and started to get another run around. I firmly told the woman there what had happened and that I was not happy and could she please just take care of this. At first, she said that they could not do anything to get me out on that night but that they would gladly put me up in a hotel in Dallas. I told her I really did not want to stay in Dallas but would rather stay the night in SLC, they booked me stand by on a flight leaving in two hours for SLC. I was told that I had missed the last flight from SLC to Idaho Falls but that they would put me up in SLC. I was told to go to the American Ticketing desk in SLC and that they would get me a hotel voucher and all set up.

Anyway, as I'm waiting for the plane to SLC they announce that the flight is overbooked and say that they need three people to volunteer to take a flight in the morning. I'm sweating this out because I was told I was booked as a stand by. Anyway when we start boarding and when they scan my boarding pass it gets kicked out, so I'm thinking great when the woman at the gate says, "who is that, is it Byrem, here is her new oarding pass". when they lady hands it to me, before I can say anything she sayd, "your very welcome". I'm thinking what?, then I look at the boarding pass and I see that I'm now booked in First Class. That was nice. I was able to ride all they way to SLC with my feet up. They offered a nice meal, but I had eaten a sandwich at the airport, so I wasn't hungry. anyway, I was actually able to sleep some on this flight.

When I got to SLC, I went directly to ticketing to get my hotel voucher and guess what? there was nobody at ticketing, it was closed up tighter than a drum. I was about to scream, there wasn't anbody around except for the TSA people at the security checkpoint. I went over and asked one of the TSA officer if they knew how to contact anyone from AA. They asked what the problem was, when I told them they sent me to baggage and said their should be someone there, but if not to come back and they would find someone to help me. At baggage I found a women who told me that she coldnt help me, she suggested that I got to a hotel and save my receipt and deal with the airline later, I told her that wasn't happening, so she finally agreed to go to ticketing and see if she could squeeze a voucher out of the computer. After about a half an hour she did get a voucher and call the hotel to send a shuttle to pick me up. Got a good night sleep at a decent hotel and was back at the airport at 9 the next morning.

The flight to Idaho Falls didn'tleave until 11:20am and got into Idaho Falls at 12:15 but it was a nice flight and finally I was there. By the way, I never saw anyody getting a body scan and the only person I saw being patted down was me. In Salt Lake I had on a large baggy sweatshirt with no t shirt under it, when they asked if I could take it off, I told them no so they told me they had to call a female agent to pat me down. It was no big deal, she was just checking the sleeves and things like that for weapons. What is the big deal people? Do you want to be on the plane with the guy with exploading underwear? Not me.

Exhausted, but happy to see the girls.

I have to admit that I can't fault the airlines for the plane being late out of San Juan but the whole screw up in Dallas over whether or not I could get on that van to get that plane to SLC, really got me going. The First class seat did buy me off a little and the hotel room at absolutely no charge wasn't too bad but I sure was disappointed. The trip ended up taking 25 hours instead of 13.

Been here two and a half days and I'm freezing, the skies are cloudy, I had forgotten how dreary that made things. Went to the storage locker today to look for some things and that was overwhelming and depressing. Are we having fun yet?

Well at least I'm not stressed anymore, I'm just complaining like a baby. I think my biggest problem is that Im homesick. I'm loving having some time with Macy and enjoying getting to know Rozalyn and Rachel and I have been enjoying each others company but I miss the sunshine and warm weather. I miss Rick and I hate wearing shoes, my feet are well adjusted to flip flops.

Monday, November 29, 2010

Well I'm packed and ready to go tomorrow, I hope! I'm trying hard not to have an anxiety attack. I will be so much better once I get to Idaho. Then the worry and anxiety wills tart all over again until I get home. Uggh!

I finished up my Creative Writing Class today. I really enjoyed it. I got a 97% on the final exam, being a little stressed and in a hurry, I misread one of the questions or I'm pretty sure I would have had 100%. I hope I can pry Rachel's computer away from her for a little bit each day, so I can continue to write. Blog at least. I did find that writing really helps me think and destress.

Well that's about it for tonight. Want to spend some time with Rick, as we will be apart for two and a half weeks. We have spent time apart before but we have never been this far away from each other. I'll try not to think about that.

Sunday, November 28, 2010

What a weekend. I have been a little stressed trying to get organized and ready for the trip, finish up my creative writing class and take the final and take in enough of St. Croix to last me for a month of cold and winter.

We had a wonderful Thanksgiving, as you can see by the pictures of our table set out on the Galleria (or deck). Elder and sister Babcock came for dinner and we had an absolutely delightful time. Way too much food but it was all good. Sister Babcock brought desert and they were wonderful. Yes I did say they, we had a pie per person. She made two pumpkin pies, one blueberry cream and a flan. The flan was my favorite, it was undoubtedly the best flan I have ever had. The pumpkin pies and the blueberry cream were excellent also, and I had my fill of all but, the flan was my favorite. It was really nice not to have to make everything for Thanksgiving. All I had to do was the turkey, stuffing, mashed potatoes and gravy, yams and green bean casserole. It was the easiest Thanksgiving Dinner I have ever made.The Babcocks stayed into the evening and we played games and had a fun time.

Friday the day after Thanksgiving I slept in. I didn't get out of bed until 10:55AM. This was most unusual for me, but I guess I needed it. We did a few things around the house and then went to do our time in the phone store. Rick and I have been operating off one cell phone for the past six months.
Since we have been trying to save money and we are together so much anyway it has worked out, but now that I'm going to Idaho ahead of him we needed another phone. We decided to go with AT&T on this one and guess what, it actually works in our condo. This will be Rick's phone, because it's more important for work that he have the local number and a phone that has better coverage. So I will still have the (208) phone number and have to be "call forwarding" it into the land line at home, but hey it works. I did take us almost two hours in the AT&T store to get everything squared away. I hope we don't have to go back for a long time.

After that we went into Christiansted to Jump Up. Jump Up is a street carnival that they do four times a year here. It's a fun party with live music on many street corners and a lot of vendors selling various things and a whole lot of food. The Mocko Jumbies show up to ward off evil spirits and this time we even saw a fire dancer.

Saturday was Cruise Ship Day in Fredricksted, so we were off to visit with our friend Abraham. It was pleasant, now that things have cooled off so we went to Rainbow beach to Rhythmns for lunch. Local lobster casedillas, yummy.

So thankful for Sunday and a day of rest. After church I was going to lay down for a few minutes and fell asleep for two hours. It was wonderful. Still have a lot of preparations for the trip, but I don't want to spoil the peaceful feeling of the Sabbath. It will all wait until tomorrow.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Up early on this Thanksgiving morning,no reason other than I can't sleep. I did want to put the turkey back in the refrigerator. It was still a little frozen last night so we put it in a sink of cold water but I think five hours of that is enough.

It almost doesn't seem like Thanksgiving because I have so little to do. I did spend yesterday cleaning the house (my second least favorite think to do) I wanted it nice and clean for Thanksgiving but I also had to get it taken care of before I left for Idaho and I want to be able to really just kick back and enjoy the weekend, so now that's all done. Generally the night before Thanksgiving I have so much to do, stuffing to make, pies to bake, candy apples to make, rolls, bread, etc, etc, etc,. Because we're sharing the meal Sister Babcock is bring the pies, rolls, cranberries and some relish so all I did last night was cook the yams. Almost seems like I'm forgetting something. I don't need to put the bird into the oven until 11:30, so I have the morning to myself.

Thinking about all the things I have to be thankful for and they are overwhelming. This year I am particularly thankful for Rachel and her new daughter. I'm thankful that they are both healthy and safe in their home. I was really worried about her at the end of her pregnancy. It was hard to be so far away, as if I could have done anything if I was there but somehow it's comforting to be close. Anyway things seem to be good for them and I will be there next week.

I am thankful to be here on St. Croix. Some days it's hard and sometimes I miss my things, does that sound silly. I never thought of myself as that attached to my things but you really feel at home if you are surrounded by your things. for the most part, I am surrounded by someone else's things. Little by little the apartment reflects more of us, but..... I did hang an 8 x 10 picture of Macy over my desk the other day and it's nice to look up and see her. When I return from Idaho, I hope to have a whole bunch of pictures of her and Rozalyn. I will also be shipping some other things back here. Pretty soon we'll have so much I'll be complaining about that.

I'm going to go have some breakfast and go for a swim in a little while. Now that's something I don't think I have ever done on Thanksgiving before.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

The trade winds are really crashing around here, last night it was so noisy I had a hard time sleeping. It has also gotten really cold at night. Rick told me today that I must be Cruzan for sure because today we went to K-Mart and bought a lightweight blanket. I have been cold that last two nights.

Talked to Rachel today. She was having a quiet morning at the hospital with Rozalyn, Don had gone to pick up Macy and check on their livestock. Apparently, SE Idaho is really getting hit by a winter storm, lots of snow and wind. Today all the schools were closed and most of the government offices. People were going home early from work and a lot of places (like the schools) have just shut down for the week. The doctor told Rachel that she could go home today, but then the nursing staff tried to discourage them from leaving this afternoon because the roads were so bad. She assured them that they had a big truck and would make it home ok. She just called to say they were safely snug in their home. I was relieved.

Rick and I went grocery shopping this evening to get the fixings for Thanksgiving and a few things for the weekend. The store was packed. Everyone was buying for the holiday and looking for unusual things. There was a real festive feeling as people were helping each other find things and talking about the Holiday. When we got home and heard about the storms in Idaho, Rick was saying that it would probably put a damper on some folks holiday, if they had not shopped early. It got me to thinking, that would be me, because I never did the final holiday shopping until Monday, Tuesday or Wednesday of Thanksgiving week. We learned that the road to our old house on the ranch has been closed since yesterday, so we would have been snowed in. Another reason to be grateful to be on St. Croix.

I am hoping that these storms blow themselves out before next week, so I can fly back to Idaho with no trouble.
Contrary to what you see here, I am doing a lot of writing. I have been consumed with my Creative
Writing Class. In the class we are encouraged to write daily and one suggestion is to keep a Journal, since my blog is my Journal I really need to be better about writing here. Unfortunately I have started way to many of my entries exactly this way.

Yesterday was a truly exciting day. We have a new member of our family. Rozalyn (undecided middle name) Thorp, she came into this world at 2:23PM MST weighing 9 lbs and being 20 3/4 inches tall. both Mom and baby are doing well. I was able to talk to Rachel and although she sounded tired, she said that things were a whole lot easier this time. Her labor was induced and in total it was only about 5 hours.

Rozalyn was born in the middle of a great blizzard. They were actually snowed in when they tried to leave to go to the hospital and had to dig out. It was unclear as to whether or not Macy was going to get up to the hospital to see her new sister last nigh due to the snow. Rick says that according to the weather predictors they have another storm on the way and then an arctic blast of cold air. sound like winter in Idaho. Can't hardly wait to get on that plane next Tuesday and have my turn holding little Rozalyn. At least by that time everybody will be tired of holding her and I won't have to fight for a turn.

We are so grateful for this new little life coming to our family. We were pretty worried about both her and her Mom for awhile there, I hope the diabetes thing is completely over for Rachel. She did tell us yesterday that they checked the baby's blood sugar and it was fine. Babies are such a miracle and Grandchildren are a most welcome blessing.

Back to St. Croix. The wind has been blowing so hard here for the last few days that except for the palm trees, warm weather, ocean out our door and so on and so on and so on, it would seem like Idaho. The trade winds are really crashing, to the extent that the noise has woke me up at night. Oh well, at least it is nice and cool, we are even turning the ceiling fans off, especially at night.

As Thanksgiving approaches it's hard to get excited. We invited the Sr. Missionaries over for dinner and a young man who is currently a student at UVI, who is also preparing to go on a mission but it won't be the same without the kids. Rick and I both feel that we have so much to be thankful for, that we don't want to cast a pall over Thanksgiving just because it will be different. I think I will just have to approach it like everything else on St. Croix as just another part of the adventure. There will be Jump-UP (a big street festival) on Black Friday so that is something fun to look forward to. Hope to finish up a little Christmas Shopping there.

Still searching for more work. It looks like this job will go until at least the end of the year. Rick cleared it with his boss to be gone for the 10 days at Christmas and it was no problem. He did get an offer for a position with a Land Trust, but he turned it down, it was not nearly enough money and they wanted exclusive rights to his time (no side work for anyone else). It was a hard decision for Rick, but we know there is something better out there just have to keep looking, praying and having faith.

Saturday, November 20, 2010

More lessons and blessing from laying things down. Yesterday I was talking about the vehicle crisis and the things that we were not going to be able to do over the weekend. Rick was concerned about work on Monday and Tuesday, so he called the guy at the tire store to see if he knew anybody who sold used tires. We figured if we spent $50 for two used tires to get us around for 4 or 5 days we would be ahead of the game. This guy found us two used tires which he gave to Rick and even mounted them for free. Of course, we will be having our repairs done there and buying new tires from him but still this was a great blessing for us and a lesson is laying our problems at the feet of our Savior.

So...last night we went to see Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows. We both enjoyed it immensely and even though there were many things left out we both felt that it was true to the book. It is definitely not a children's story anymore. It was very dark and sinister, the evil is more evil and good is having a very hard time overcoming. The stopping point for this first half of the last book was very dramatic and we are anxiously waiting for the conclusion.

Didn't get the cleaning done today that I had planned but Rick and I had a very pleasant day together and since we will be apart for about 3 weeks, it's nice to have these days together. Planning for Sunday and our church responsibilities and going to watch a move and have homemade pizza.

Friday, November 19, 2010

Friday, and it's a new day. Well of course, it's a new day, but for me a new day in more ways than one. I have really been struggling with a lot of things lately and wondering why everything has gotten so hard. In actuality nothing has gotten any harder, I had just given stopped having the faith that things would and could work out. This probably grew out of my having several crisis to deal with at once.

First, my ongoing dental crisis. I had a three tooth bridge put in about five years ago. At the time this dental work was done, I was not happy with it but instead of pursuing having the dentist correct the problem right then and there, I let it go, thinking I would deal with when I had to. Well here I am, five years later and 3500 miles away having to deal with it. This bridge that I paid over $2600 for never did fit right and so a piece broke off from one of the teeth right away, like within six months, then about eighteen months ago in fell out. My dentist at the time, cemented it back in and didn't say much. Somewhere in the first month here on St. Croix, it fell out again. I found a dentist to cement it back in again, which he did without saying much. That lasted about three months and I was back in the chair with the bridge in my hand. Now the dentist tells me that he can cement it back in but it won't last, because the front tooth under the bridge has broken off and it won't hold. So with that in mind, I paid him to cement it back in, in the hopes that it would last until after the first of the year and I could figure something out. Well this time it lasted about two weeks. I called the dentist back to find out my options and he wouldn't talk to me over the phone but said I had to come in for a consultation and x-rays. Went back paid him $50 for the consultation and $30 for two x-rays (they wanted to do a full mouth, but I told them let's just start with the area in question) to find out that I need a new bridge to the tune of $3600, plus I need the front tooth (in this bridge) pulled and a temporary crown made for the back tooth for the sum of $600, so this little dental crisis is scheduled to cost me around $4200 before it's over.

I made an appointment for the extraction and temporary crown and left the dentists office wondering how in the world I was going to come up with $600 for this first part of the ordeal. Spent two sleepless nights and twice as many days in gastro distress, when I realized that there was absolutely nothing I could do but worry and make myself sick, so I started praying. That was when I remembered something in the scriptures about Jesus saying that we should lay our burdens at his feet and he would make them light. I decided that this is what I needed to do, so I gave this burden over to Him. I did make several attempts to pick it up again, but I kept reminding myself to have more faith and LET IT GO. When we got paid, last week, I went through the budget and low and behold there was the $600 to pay for this. Now my first thought was of all the other things that I would rather spend that $600 on and then after having a little talk with myself, I was simply grateful that a way had been provided.

Yesterday was the appointed day and I had the deed done and paid in cash. Can't say that having a tooth pulled and a titanium post put in another one was a whole bunch of fun but it's over. I did get to eat ice cream and lay around and watch movies for the rest of the day without any guilt. That's gotta be worth something. I have to go back to the dentist on the 29th to see that everything is healing up nicely and then I can go to Idaho and relax. I will have to face the new bridge and the $3600 price tag when I come back, but somehow I know there will be a way.

Second, our ongoing vehicle crisis. Three weeks and three days ago we had to put new front tires on the "island car". That cost $200 that we had to rob "from Peter", but the really bad news was that when they went to do the alignment they found that the front end needed some work done, to the tune of $800. Rick decided and I agreed with him that we weren't going to put $800 into the little "island car" that we paid $2500 for, so we mereily drove off thinking well we'll probably lose some time off these tires but we'll face that bridge when we come to it. Well three weeks and three days later, there we were at the bridge abutment finding out that it had been washed away in our reoccurring deluge of car troubles. We took the car to someone we trusted (we didn't go to him for the new tires because he didn't have any to fit our car) for a second opinion and yes we need the front end work done, he was a little cheaper, he could do it for $750, but keep in mind that now we also need new tires again. We don't have much choice, so we charged the $400 they wanted to order the parts and are hoping they come in (ETA, Tuesday 11/23) before both tires go(well last evening one went, so now we have the "bicycle tire spare" on the car and are afraid to go anywhere, in fear that the other tire will blow out and we will be without a spare). Are you laughing yet? You should be, because somehow it seems that this can only happen to Rick and I. Today,, now that all the novacaine has finally left my brain and I'm thinking, I realize that this is another crisis that I can't handle, gotta lay it down and let someone else take over.

This started me thinking about all the things that I can't get done over the next four or five days because we really can't drive the car. In a effort to be a glass half full kind of person I turned that around and started thinking of all the things I could get done at home with no excuses to having to go somewhere. Things that I wanted to have done before I leave for Idaho, this is the way they can all get done with no guilt over thinking I should be somewhere else doing something else. Kind of like that eating ice cream all day thing because I had a tooth pulled. Anyway, maybe it won't be so bad. Rick has been able to arrange to get to work, so we'll still get paid and I do believe that somehow we'll be able to get where really need to be. See I'm getting better and better at this "laying my burdens down" thing.

We had planned to see the new Harry Potter movie this weekend and that will have to be put on hold, a little disappointing maybe but certainly not a crisis, and I was hoping to go to the beach on Saturday, but maybe we can walk to the one down below our place or maybe not, the beach will still be there next weekend. It's great to be able to see thing clearly now that all the fog has passed.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

So, as if I wasn't depressed enough, today we can't get the Internet to boot up at the house. So, we're sitting at the Brew Pub having dinner and doing some business. Since I didn't get on yesterday and blog I thought I would take a few minutes to get this out of my system.

The weather has turned absolutely gorgeous here, cool, breezy, sunny and beautiful blue skies. Have to admit I could use a light blanket at night. I still go to the pool daily and workout, but once finished, I have been getting right out. Once I have worked out and gotten really warmed up, just hanging out in the cool water and really cool air, gives me the shivers. Guess I have acclimated faster than I thought.

Feeling anxious and more than a little "blue" lately, not exactly sure why. Trying to immerse myself in my writing class and now the Internet won't work. Oh well, I guess I can write anyway and wait to post it on my class whenever the service improves.

I'm trying real hard not to be negative here. I'm keeping this as my Journal and I'm not sure I want to come back to this a read a whole lot of negativity, much less have someone read about what a boob I was 100 years from now. (Of course, that's assuming that 100 years from now someone has the most remote interest in reading about me.) Yesterday when I was talking to a friend, I said that I needed to be careful not to be negative and she said she could never remember me being negative. That did make me feel good, because sometimes I feel that, that's all I am is negative. I truly have nothing to be upset about, but all the same I can't seem to shake feeling "bad". Maybe I just need more prayer???

Monday, November 15, 2010

What a beautiful day, finally. The sun was shining, the breeze was blowing and I got a lot done. Even had time for a swim in the pool (actually bobbing around after working out). Rick had a job interview tonight, for a job he seems to be excited about, I'm not so sure, but I'm not going to get too worked up until they offer the position to him.

Talked to Rachel this evening, after her doctor's appointment. She is going in next Monday morning at 7:30AM to have her baby, unless something happens before then. Hopefully she can hang on until then. I am disappointed that I won't be able to meet my new granddaughter until she is a week and a day old. I knew this was a possibility when I made my reservations. Rick was kind enough to offer to try to change my reservations, because he knows how much I want to be there, but I really don't want to leave him alone for Thanksgiving and when I first started looking at flying to Idaho, I was saving almost $300 by flying the Tuesday after the holiday as opposed to the week of, so I'm sure it wouldn't be cheap. I know Rachel will be fine without me there and the new baby really won't know the difference. It's the down side to living so far away.

Well I am going to look at the glass half full and get excited about the fact that two week from tomorrow night I'll be there with Miss Macy and my knew granddaughter. Now I really had better get with it in planning and getting everything ready. Also, have to finish up my creative writing class. The final exam becomes available on Nov. 26th, so I have four days to study up and take it and post my final paper. I really want to get that done before I leave.

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Second post for today, because I am feeling and doing much better. I think just the act of saying that I would work hard to remove the negativity from my life has been a tremendous help. Also, no negative phone calls today. Also, had a great day with Rick, we went to Fredricksted, saw some friends and even went to the AT&T phone store to do some phone shopping for him ( you have a minimum wait of 45 minutes there) but it was all good. Praying for the strength to resist the negative has been a great blessing.

Talked to Rachel tonight and she is so ready to have this baby. I really feel for her, I know things are a little tough right now, but I also believe that they will be better soon. I'm starting to get excited about going and being with her and Macy and the new baby girl.

Started to get excited for Christmas too. Have to admit that's a first for me, cause I usually like to enjoy Thanksgiving to the fullest before I begin to even think about Christmas. Things on the island are starting to get festive with the Holidays in mind, so maybe that's it. We noticed today Christmas decorations up on the light poles all through town, it's kind of funny to see large snowflakes (I suppose winter themes just go with Christmas,no matter where you are). Today I bought a Christmas CD, all familiar Christmas songs with either a reggae or calypso beat. Kind of fun.
So, it's 5:45AM and I have been up for about an hour, that's up and out of bed, I have been awake for about 2 hours. Can't sleep. Not sure what's wrong with me. Seems like a lot of stress mixed with a little depression but I really can't put my finger on where either might be coming from. This is simply NOT me. Things are going pretty well for us here on St. Croix, so I really shouldn't be stressed and I really don't feel depressed. I haven't felt physically well for a few days, but I'm starting to wonder if that isn't just more stress and depression than actual physical illness. I think I am going to have to push myself a little bit more to get up, get out and shake this off.

I have to admit that I have been confronted with a whole lot of negativity lately and that is never good. It isn't me who is being negative but it seems to be coming from a lot of different directions. I do know that it is up to me to eliminate it from my life, no matter what. I really don't understand people who insist that the glass is half empty, it's just as easy to look at it as half full.

I become exasperated at people who are always complaining about a bad situation and yet they won't do anything to make it better. I think for me I am going to have to stay away from those people, so I don't let their frustrations and anxiety be my frustrations and anxiety.

I go about thinking that it's my job to listen to other people and their problems, then when they ask for help and I make a suggestion and they don't listen, I become frustrated. I have to realize that some people go around asking for advise and venting all of their problems because the want to complain and because they want to complain and have something to complain about they really don't want the bad situations in their life to get better. I know that we all judge from our own experience, but the idea of having a bad situation in your life, bad enough where you seek outside advise, then you refuse to listen to the advise (even though you admit that it is the same advise that several people, some professionals, have given you), and you keep complaining about the situation and seeking advise (from the same people who have already given you their best opinion), makes me crazy. This is so toxic to everyone involved.

Well maybe this late night/early morning rant has been worth something, because I think I have a clear course to follow. I need to eliminate anything and everything from my life that creates any negativity (at least for the moment). Apparently, I am way to susceptible to it. I definitely need to pray more and find my peace again. Then I need to be sure not to give my peace away to anyone for any reason. It is up to me. Just like I truly believe that no one can offend us, because we choose to be offended or not. I also believe that no one can take away our peace, with negativity or anything else, we choose to give it up. I will not do this again, I am worth so much more.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Realizing how derelict I have been in writing. The last few days have been so full,of what I'm not sure, but by 9 I'm ready to hit the sack and read for awhile. Both Monday and Tuesday I didn't make it to 10 before the book was slapping me in the forehead. Today we had errands to run all over the island, amid all the flooding and flash flood warnings, it was kind of exciting. It did feel good to get back to the safety of our condo this evening. Rick had to go out again to visit someone and unfortunately they were too flooded out for him to get to their home.

Trying hard to get things in order so I can make this trip to Idaho. Not exactly sure where to start. I guess I'll take the advise of Scarlett O'Hara about "tomorrow being another day".

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Absolutely terrific meetings at church today, even if I did have to teach in Gospel Doctrine class. Glad to get that over with. Rain today, but not near as much as they have been predicting. Nice nap, good dinner and we have been continuing on with our Harry Potter Fest, getting ready for the big Day, Nov 19th.
Up early and ready for church, realized that I didn't blog last night, so I thought I might catchup a little. I spent so much of the day writing, it didn't occur to me that I didn't write here. Really enjoying the Creative Writing Class, getting totally immersed into it.

Did break down and go grocery shopping in the afternoon. You know how much I love that. The upside is that we finally got some appropriate computer paper to do our "not Christmas letter"on. I really want to send this out by the 15th of November, so everyone will have our new address in time. Stating to realize that it's only 23 more days until I leave for Idaho. Hoping Rachel and Mavis can hold on that long. Rick seems to think that if the baby is born in the next week, I should try to change my flights and go early, we'll just have to wait and see what happens and keep praying.

Friday, November 5, 2010

Just got off of Facebook and was so disappointed in some of my "friends". It seems the ones who have so much to be grateful for, can't stop complaining. It certainly makes me more aware of the things that I post and my general attitude of gratitude.

Spent the morning dealing with my ongoing "dental crisis", spent the better part of last night laying awake stressing about said "dental crisis". Finally came to a conclusion that I can't figure this one out and the burden was getting to be too much to bear (in other words, I was stressed to the max), after a lot of prayer and wondering I decided (actually I think I was told, maybe in a dream) that I just needed to lay this burden at the Lord's feet. Once I did that I felt an amazing sense of calm, not that I didn't have to remind myself several times throughout the morning, not to go back and pick that burden up again. Incredibly things have started to work themselves out. I still can't see the end, but I'm not worried anymore, I know it will work out the way it should and I will be OK in the process.

After that morning crisis, I spent a good part of the afternoon writing. The assignment for my class this week is to post the first paragraph of our "final creative piece" and I haven't even come up with an idea for mine. Oh, oh, here comes the stress.... I started writing some disjointed paragraphs, good in their own, but I was scared to post any, because I didn't know where I was going to take them for the final piece. Rick was kind enough to take me out to dinner (I think he could see how stressed I was and how wrapped up in the whole thing I was getting and he had a fine sense of "no dinner tonight) we talked a lot about my anxiety about this assignment. With his help I came to the conclusion that even seven hundred page novels are written one paragraph at a time and not everyone has an outline of the entire work at the first second or even three hundredth paragraph. The real creative process is to just write and see what's in there (kind of like my blog, each night I just start writing and don't really know where I'm going). Anyway...I feel much better now and even think I have an opening paragraph for my "final piece", not quite ready to post it yet, need to sleep on it and make a few more revisions, of course, it has to be perfect.

Talked to Rachel today and learned that she is having contractions. She was at the doctors today and when they noticed the contractions they checked her to find out that she is dilated to 3 or 4. They kept her in the doctors office, under observation, for a few hours and when the contractions stopped, they sent her home. It does look like things "have begun". I sincerely hope she can keep that baby in for a few more weeks. She'll probably hate me for saying that (I do remember how "done" you are at about 8 months), I just want little Mavis to have every opportunity to have a good healthy start. I also want to be able to be there to be of some real help, not coming three weeks after the baby is born. Well, I suppose we'll just have to wait and see what happens. Praying for them both to be healthy and things to go well.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Energy is back and I actually got quite a bit done today, mostly paperwork and writing at the computer, but hey, it's an improvement over yesterday. I'm enjoying the writing but not the paperwork, ugh, I hate that stuff (not as much as grocery shopping, which I have to do tomorrow) it just tends to bog me down.

Weather is still cool and really windy. Watching the weather channel today as Haiti prepares for Tomas. It's only a Tropical Storm now but expected to reach hurricane status by the time it gets there. I can't even imagine what will happen with all of those people still living in tents. An interesting fact that I just learned about Haiti, although it's a tropical island, there are no tress, the mountains are barren, because they have cut down all the tress for building and other reasons. I just have to ask myself, how could a country be so uninformed and have gotten in such a mess. Many people here on St. Croix don't have much sympathy and say that it's God's will or wrath, that these things are happening in Haiti. I just can't believe that, nor can I believe that the world really isn't helping much. Keep praying for them.