As deep as a puddle after a hard rain

Embarrassment of Riches

9/6/2023 |0 comments

In 2014 I was fortunate enough to be able to move in with friends to cut down on costs. This was much needed because the multiple cross country moves, being unemployed for a brief period and, yes, some questionable financial decisions had left me with more debt than I was comfortable carrying. By then I knew I would be trying to grow my family at some point and I couldn’t imagine embarking on that journey with such a financial deficit hanging over my head. Thankfully I had Sam around who didn’t mind taking in a hermit for a roommate.

So that’s the quick background. Let’s fast forward a bit to 2015 and the cancer diagnosis and treatment. As we know, since this isn’t a ghost typing this, the surgery took care of the physical problem. But I was left emotionally, uhm, not well let’s say. So I turned to the time honored therapy known as retail therapy. Which you might think was counter productive given my goal of paying down debt. But my expenses were so minimal (I mean, Sam even let me use his car when I didn’t feel like renting one) that I was able to make significant dents to the debt and still buy an embarrassing amount of clothes. And I do mean embarrassing.

There was a period where I don’t think a day went by when there weren’t multiple packages waiting for me in front of my bedroom door.

And if you’re a woman or a person who is always thinking she needs to lose weight you’ll likely connect with the idea of buying motivational clothing. The thing that’s one or two (or in my brain addled drepessed state, three or four) sizes too small because you’re going to lose the weight and it’s 80% off so practically free so how can you not buy it!?!*

So yeah. This means I have a closet and several storage bins full of really pretty clothes that is essentially my own personal store.

All this rambling brought to you by the fact that some recent weight loss (please don’t mention it. I don’t share that for any acknowledgment.) had me dipping into my clothes stash. I was able to add 8 (!) new skirts and 3 new dresses to my wardrobe. That’s both fun and also a little cringey. I acknowledge that.

And this also means I can go through and see what doesn’t fit and either donate it or put it aside for alterations.

So, yeah. That’s my Friday so far. I took the day off because I’m tired and I could. I may go to the movies later. I don’t know. I gotta check to see what the matinee prices are. Those silly things never go on clearance, huh? 🤪🤪

*Despite the loss of rational thinking, I only purchased things that were final clearance. If it wasn’t at least 75% off I didn’t consider it. That was some of the justification and that I was still on track according to my debt reduction spreadsheet meant at the time I felt okay about it all.  Because, hey, cancer! Whatever, etc etc.

The End of an Era

7/9/2023 |0 comments

Back in the mid-2000s, a favorite nerd hobby of mine (and quite a few other folks, really) was to gobble up domain names. They were cheap enough that it was possible and you just didn’t want some fantastically awesome domain to not be available once you came up with an idea for a site or product or whatever. Hell, sometimes you didn’t even have to have plans for it, even maybe someday plans, it was just fun, funny. Like I said, nerds. Eh.

I settled on lunanina as being my digital home pretty early on and at this point, even though I don’t make use of the domain in any meaningful way, after 23 years, I can’t imagine not having it. Other domains, though, have come and gone, some with very little after thought. Others with a little bit of regret. I’m living in that regret space right now.

I let patricia-elizabeth expire last month. I moved the blog to that ages ago, once more of my “real-life” people had discovered the blog. It wasn’t that the blog was ever that revealing and given that it was public, I certainly wasn’t shy about people reading my thoughts. But it felt different, having strangers that I probably would never interact with read about my childhood and people who I had to sit across from at meetings knowing stuff that I hadn’t already decided to share with them. I think that’s the kind of thing that folks who choose to share online would understand and would confuse others who think all the social networking thing is just a waste of time.

Regardless, in trying to be more fiscally responsible, I looked at the annual cost of the domains I still had and while it wasn’t breaking the bank, it was enough to make me thing, hmm, that’s just silly. So I let 3 domains expire. I was sure that was the right thing to do. It’s still the right thing to do. But that doesn’t mean I’m not feeling pangs about the namesake domain being gone. I’m a creature of habit and I like my routines so maybe I can attribute the feelings to that. Or perhaps letting that go means accepting that the period of my life which encompassed the use of that particular domain is long behind me. I don’t know.

I do know that I just looked to see if the domain was available and it is, but through an auction. Which immediately had me thinking, well, no, I don’t miss it that much. It’s nice that the idea of having to spend even more money on it brought along a little clarity. Hey, we take our “wins” aka marginal emotional growth however we can get them around here.

Silver Linings

4/4/2023 |0 comments

I started my first Twitter account back in 2006. And when I tell you that I still kind of regret having crashed and burned that account after a few short months that’s me admitting just how much of a nerd I continue to be. It’s been so long ago that I don’t even remember why I deleted it. I probably didn’t see the point of it. Who knows.

But much like blogging Twitter brought some smart folks into my life who I am happy to call friends. Which is why, even as I came to use the site less and less, I didn’t once consider deleting the second account which I started at some point in 2007. Plus, even if I don’t use it much, it was still fun knowing how old my account was when younger folks excitedly told me about their new Twitter habit. I wasn’t annoying about it, I don’t think. I never once patted them on the head while also saying, “Oh, it’s cute that you think you just discovered this.” Given that in the 16 years I’ve had an account I’ve never gotten more than 300 and some followers I can hardly be too smug about it after all. Popular I never was. In real or my digital life. But that’s neither here nor there.

I got to thinking about Twitter tonight because the slooow demise means folks have started blogging again. Not as many as I would like but enough that skipping down my blogroll is fun again. I don’t think we’ll ever get back to the hey day of blogging but people having the urge to post thoughts in more than 280 characters is still a win in my book.

I’m keeping my fingers crossed that the trend lasts.

Morbid Math

3/31/2023 |0 comments

I turned 50 this month. I am a parent of a three year old.
These are facts I think about a lot. Well, not the precise age. But definitely the fact that I am an older parent.

I always hoped to be a parent. I can pinpoint that hope back to my early teens. None of my hopes and dreams had me waiting so long to become someone’s mami. I don’t wish for a different path though. How could I? To do so would mean I wouldn’t have been ready to welcome this sweet, obstinate, headstrong girl into my world.


Here is the but.

It saddens me that my brain is constantly trying to figure out how much time I will have with her. And here is where some folks always chime in with, no day is promised. You could die tomorrow!

Okay. Fine. They don’t say the last bit but I do hear the first part. It’s strange that this is supposed to ease my dread. People mean well though so bygones.

Still, no matter how sweet people try to be, all things being equal and barring freak accidents, the fact is I am not going to have as much time with her as I would like. Odds are good that I don’t live to see her 100th birthday after all.

I try to stay in the moment and enjoy each day but when your brain has always steered towards the realities of life, it’s hard to not have the dark thoughts.

There are articles about people choosing to have kids later in life and the wonders of modern medicine etc etc etc. On principle I think people having a choice and being able to have the children they want are good things. But it makes me sad for all of us who won’t have 50, 60, 70 years to see our babies out in the world.

Perfect is the enemy of good

2/10/2023 |0 comments

Or as a supervisor ages ago told me, “Sometimes you have be okay with good enough.”

So that’s where we are right now. Does this site look at all like I would hope? Nope.
Does it have all the sections I wish it had? Nope.
Does it have the bare minimum to allow me to actually use it? No- wait. That one is actually a yes.

It can house my blatherings. It has a space to add quick links to articles, videos etc. that I find interesting and it has a spot where I can post links to much much smarter people than me (I? see? Point proven). The archives for the longer posts can be, shockingly enough, found under the Archives section. The quick links won’t be archived because, let’s face it, nobody is gonna go looking for those.

So, at this point, if I’m not writing it’s not because the site can’t handle it.

At some point I would like for it not to look like something a 12 year old did back in the early 2000s using Geocities but eh. One thing, or word, rather, at a time.

Slow Progress

1/22/2023 |0 comments

The downside to neglecting the site, to no longer having as much energy to fiddle around with code and to, well, not really have anyone visiting, is that when something on the back end breaks, it takes me a long time to get around to fixing it. And, if the fix is beyond my basic capabilities, I just hit the reset button. Which blows up the way the site looks but because I have the entries saved in databases I shrug the shoulders and think (and feel) eh. My toxic trait, as the kids say nowadays, is thinking I’ll fix it in a timely manner.

Well, debatable. I’m not sure resetting the site in August of 2022 and finally doing the bare minimum 4 months later qualifies as timely. However, given that in the past going from reset to restart has taken me years - as I said, debatable.

I’m stubbornly holding on to using Expression Engine for the content management which is silly given that it doesn’t come with any preset, easy to add templates. This matters because while I have full entries showing on the main page again, I still have to figure out how to code the pages to allow for the blogroll and any other links I may want to save.

I’ve also pared down the idea of what this space should be. In the past I wanted it to not just be a blog but a place to store my photos, more long-form writing, etc. But, really, given that I can barely sometimes get up the energy to do a quick blog post, and that I have zero interest or intent in having a portfolio of any kind, these grand designs are also quite silly.

The desire to journal is still there though so once again, here we are. We being me and, uhm, probably just me, let’s face it. Having no audience didn’t stop me in the past though so that’s definitely not likely to be an impediment now.

There does seem to be a general feeling of people wanting to get back to some version of blogging so I’m looking forward to seeing how that goes for others. As always, we shall see how it all goes.

2022 Goodreads Reaching Challenge

1/17/2023 |0 comments

My Year in Books graphic from Goodreads
My Year in Books graphic from Goodreads

I set a goal of reading 30 books in 2022. I ended the year with 67 books read. So the question now is, Do I keep the same reading goal for 2023 or bump it up? I used to read a book or two a week but that was so long ago that I can’t easily claim to be much of a reader nowadays. But I miss losing myself in a book, I miss the feeling of wanting to get done with a task because a story was waiting. So for 2022 I stuck to “easy” reads - so, no, I didn’t make any progress on The Brothers Karamazov. That continues to be my white whale.

Among the 67 books read, these are the ones that stood out:

Favorite reads: Project Hail Mary, Andy Weir; Americanah, Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie; The Sum of Us: What Racism Costs Everyone and How We Can Prosper Together, Heather McGhee

Most helpful: oh crap! Potty training: everything modern parents need to know to do it once and do it right, Jamie Glowacki

Weirdest: nothing to see here, Kevin Wilson

The YA that reminded me YA isn’t just for the youngsters: The Lesbianas Guide to Catholic School, Sonora Reyes; Lobizona, Romina Garber

The book that reminded me I really need to read more Latinae writers (and preferably in Spanish): The Book of Unknown Americans, Cristina Henriquez

The book that reminded me romance books can be fun escapes and started me down the contemporary romance rabbit hole that greatly facilitated the increased reading: Seven Days in June, Tia Williams

The book that made me pick up a classic I’ve been meaning to read: Re Jane, Patricia Park

The book that I didn’t realize had pissed me off so much until I picked up the sequel and discovered I hated the premise so much I couldn’t possible read past the first chapter: Dial A for Aunties, Jesse Q. Sutano

For 2023 I’ve decided to set two goals: read 40 books and to have many of those come from my own bookshelves. It would take several years reading at this pace to make a serious dent in my personal library but we have to start somewhere, no?

Reboot 2022

8/9/2022 |0 comments

Had some trouble with a recent site update. I’m going to need to set the site back up again. I’d like to say things will be back to normal relatively fast, recent history has shown that day to day energy and focus vary greatly so I’m not sure when exactly I’ll be able to get the site back up completely.

Grief, Guilt and Loss

7/28/2022 |0 comments


Can you feel grief without also experiencing guilt? While I’ve been fortunate to not have experienced a lot of loss in my life, in my experience the two always go hand in hand. There’s always the feeling of not having done enough. Of not having tried hard enough to stay connected. Of the conversations that won’t be had.

When I was in El Salvador for a week, because of COVID and the kiddo not being vaccinated, I decided we would stay close to home. I also decided, since we would be staying close to home, that we would work on potty training. I didn’t love not being able to see as many people as I wanted, but the low contact seemed necessary. At the time I was also thinking we’d be back for two weeks in December. She’d be vaccinated by then, hopefully COVID would be even less of a problem. I’ll see everyone then, I thought.

That decision gutted me in early July when I found out an aunt died in late June. We had talked about seeing her but it was hard for her to get around and I didn’t want to be on public transportation with the kid because potty training wasn’t going well. I consoled myself with the thought that I’d see my aunt in a few months and she’d get to meet my little girl.

I’m almost 50 years old. You’d think I’d be more aware of the fact that people that have known me all my life won’t be around forever. But that’s not the way my brain works. That can’t be the way our brains work, can it? To constantly be thinking that a visit, a moment, could be the last visit, the last moment with someone. That seems emotionally exhausting.

The last time I saw my aunt was in 2018. When I forget she’s passed, I just think of her living in El Salvador, going about her day to day life. And then I feel that pang of sadness, followed quickly by the guilt, again. I console myself by reminding myself that in those three years I emailed and called her, gave her updates on the baby, sent photos and, during the lockdown that affected all of us, I helped as much as I could. So the three years didn’t pass in complete silence but, still, the decision to not see her a few months ago, for now, seems so heavy that it overshadows the efforts of the last three years.

So it goes. Life goes. Whether we’re ready for it or not.

Not Too Much Attention

3/10/2022 |0 comments

After five years in the same job, at the end of the month I will be transitioning to a new position within the county system. I don’t hate my job - although as with any job, there are frustrations. But it’s not a need to get away that’s driving the change. Rather it’s a question of what’s next? I’m looking forward to the change in focus. While I will still get to use the skills and knowledge that I’ve accumulated throughout the year, I’ll be focusing on different issues that I’ve previously had some experience with but nothing full time. What I am not looking forward to is the transition and all the attention that that brings.

In a Jerry Seinfeld show about a decade ago, during the Q&A, a woman in the audience yelled out that it was her birthday. Seinfeld wished her a happy birthday and asked how old she was. The woman did not reply. So he quipped, “so you like attention just not too much attention.” That has stuck with me because that’s me.

I like attention on my own terms when I’m in the mood. I’m not always in the mood. So all this having to announce that I’m switching jobs and having folks react to it, it’s a lot. And because it’s not exactly a promotion people are asking why I’m leaving the current position. Telling folks who have been doing the same job for a decade (or more) that I don’t hate the job and I just need something different - well, I might as well be telling them I don’t like bacon, brownies or pie. They all seem to elicit the same “I don’t understand what you’re saying” reaction.

So I’m ready to just move on but still have two more weeks to go. Meh.