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I know I said I wouldn't do this again

And so if you don't want to follow since I don't update that much, then I totally understand. It's just that I lost the domain I had for years, and had to come up with another one. since I try to crosspost to my lj, I'm trying to keep the name and new site reflected, though I definitely don't plan on deleting this journal. It just probably won't be updated anymore.

New Journal name: thisbellerocks.

To our little Buddy:

You were in our lives for such a short time, and I really, really wish we had all had more time together. And even though it hurt us to lose you the way we did, I am still so happy that we were at least able to have some time together.


We just knew you belonged here from the very first moment we laid eyes on you. Half-starved, and reluctant to trust us at first, you soon took to us as we were hoping you would. We got you checked out and fixed up by the vet, and were made aware of how uncomfortable you must be due to your long-neglected dental issues, which we resolved to fix - as soon as we were able to. The more we fed you and spent time with you and took care of you, the healthier you looked. Even your cherry eye had almost completely healed on its own, and you looked and acted like a much younger doggie!


(true to the nature of your breed, you always did keep your nose to the ground, following whatever trails you could in our back yard!)

We had so much fun this summer, didn't we? Well, except for the time got stuck in the woods. That was not fun at all, for you OR us! But we got our happy ending.

You loved us, and you loved our other dogs:

April & Buddy playing in the snow

You never howled at us when we took the girls in after playing, and left you outside at night. You were happiest outside, though you did enjoy coming inside to play every now and then, and mark your territory. But I can hardly fault you for that; you were just trying to let any other dogs that might come near know that this place was yours - and it was.

Despite how much pain you must have been in closer to the end, you never complained. About anything. Ever. We rarely ever heard you bark or howl, and you never whimpered or whined. Which is why, when faced with the decision to put you under and try to fix you this time or to let you go to sleep peacefully, I chose the latter.

It was easy, and it was hard. The vet and I were not sure you'd be up to the surgery, and the odds of you coming through it at all at this point were not good. I was worried that I could not get you through recovery. After all you'd been through already, I could not be responsible for putting you through more pain, even though I know you are a fighter. We all felt you deserved to roam free, without boundaries of fences and harnesses and painful issues. Chasing rabbits whenever and wherever you wanted, sunning yourself always. Ironically, we saw the sun today for the first time in a while, as you were drifting off to sleep.

You took a big piece of us with you today, but I wouldn't trade it for anything. I know you loved us, and we know that you knew we loved you. I am glad you got to experience a few months of having nothing to do but be adored.

You will be missed.

I’ve had an awful night.

But today is a new day, and I am going to make the most of it. You probably already saw this if you follow me on Myspace, Facebook, or Twitter.

Things are not all sunshine and roses here, and haven’t been for quite some time. I have pushed myself and pushed myself and pushed myself to do better in every way that I can control: better eating, more exercise, more housework, more hours on the job, etc, etc, etc. I have pushed myself and pushed myself and pushed myself to refrain from letting doubt and negativity take hold. And that takes a LOT of effort, let me tell you!

Instead, I have finally learned to let go of a lot. Letting the small stuff slide, if you will. I’ve kept my focus on all the positive things happening to and around me. I can actually see myself achieving several goals I’ve set, and that feels wonderful! Being more productive and inspired is always a good thing.

But after last night, where I got approximately two hours of sleep in twenty minute intervals due to reasons I won’t even acknowledge “out loud” (it’s that refusal to give in to negativity), I feel…..fine. No, really. I am.

I’m finishing my sensible breakfast of oatmeal, and getting ready to go in to work. I will carry on as if I’d gotten a full eight hours of sleep. I will come home, get my kids, and we will clean and I will make supper. And tonight at bedtime, I will start a new routine which will save me from another sleepless night and the other strife associated with last night.

I still have some determination left in me after all. Everything will be alright.

Originally published at devilishsouthernbelle.net. You can comment here or there.

I’ve been terribly remiss in my blog reading here lately, and feel like I have literally shut myself off – even from the cyber world!

This is quite different for me. Even though I have been steadily slacking off for some time now, I can actually remember a time when I couldn’t wait to get home or get some free time and blog. And read blogs. Now? I still enjoy, but I’ve begun devoting my free time to several other pursuits – some good, some productive, and some purely self-indulgent. But it still seems weird to not have that same compulsion to sit at the computer for hours, typing my own posts, working on my own designs, reading other blogs and attempting to network and all that jazz. I can’t believe that took up so much of my life for such a long time. And I also can’t believe I’m actually okay with letting a lot of that slide these days. Change is good, no?

I am proud to say that I have been making a lot of leeway towards getting and keeping the finances in order, and getting and keeping the house in order, and that some of my home improvement goals have been met. And even more will happen, hopefully soon. I never would have thought that opening my schedule at work in the hopes of alleviating some financial stresses would have made me an all-around happier person. But having several burdens lifted and feeling more weight coming off my shoulders, or at the very least, feeling hopeful for the first time in a long time, is a HUGE thing.

Now, if I could just get the weight to come off my body altogether.

Speaking of, I have been doing pretty decent with following Weight Watchers and keeping up with Hungry Girl for inspiration. But this week? All thrown out the window. It’s bitterly cold, and I am tired, achy, cranky, bloated, puffy, and just miserable. So it’s comfort food and Weeds.

I love this show! Why did I wait so long to start watching? (and I’ve even tried to keep my productivity up by getting up during the Ticky-Tacky song and moving loads of laundry, or taking the trash out for the night. You know, just the small stuff, but stuff that needs to be done, nonetheless!)

So I am on Season 3 now. These are due back Thursday, when I will bring home Season 4. But I guess I will have to do that one disc at a time, as it’s in the new releases, and I won’t rent a bunch of those at once. So….when I am done with Weeds, what other shows do I need to watch? Right now, the only show I watch really regularly is True Blood, when it’s on. But I’ve seen The Sopranos, tried to watch Deadwood and Big Love, but just couldn’t get into them, and I’ve lost interest in Heroes, Lost, and Desperate Housewives.


Originally published at devilishsouthernbelle.net. You can comment here or there.

Now that the holidays are over

and we’ve had two snow days, I’ve had absolutely ENOUGH! of this cold weather! I am so ready for spring. I know it’ll be at least four more months before the temperatures are tolerable, but still…..I am very much looking forward to it!

I have been in the process of decluttering and reorganizing for quite some time, and now that has reached the point where I am considerably paring down my vintage dish collection. It’s just time to get rid of stuff, and I am currently packing the ones I never use anymore for donation to the local Rescue Mission thrift store. I’d try to sell some of it, but that would probably be more trouble than it’s worth, not to mention most of this stuff was purchased really, REALLY cheap due to slight to how-did-I-possibly-miss-this imperfections.

So, of course I loved everything I’ve bought. But I ended up with a lot of stuff just because I was such a collecting/thrifting novice that I was instantly mesmerized by a pretty pattern. Or I got things home and noticed a crack I didn’t/couldn’t see at the store, or got them home and then decided I didn’t like them as much after all. I am much, much more choosy now in what I bring home, and now that I am running out of space? I’ll liberate what I haven’t seen or used in months, and hopefully they can find new homes where new people will appreciate and find some use for them.

I’ll still collect, but I’ll mainly be sticking to collectible patterns in exceptionally good shape.

So far, I have a bigger “donate” stack than “keep” stack, so I am doing good. Right?

Originally published at devilishsouthernbelle.net. You can comment here or there.

Getting back to the grind.

Went back to work today. I was a nervous wreck, but the drive really wasn't bad at all. Today's shift was short, though it seemed LONG since the weather kept most of our shoppers away. But tomorrow should be busy busy busy! And I am excited. Okay, not really. I do like it, but I’d honestly much rather be staying home, cleaning my house some more in preparation for the home improvement projects to come (stove and flooring, oh yes!), and watching HGTV for inspiration. Yesterday, I happened to catch my very favorite episode of Color Splash (according to David Bromstad, my style is “Modern Eclectic”. Now I know!). It was the one where he designed a couple’s dining room around some antique china left to them by the husband’s Great Grandmother.

I don’t even know what I loved most about the room (probably the china itself), but I think it’s how he took the typically 50’s colors of salmon and turquoise and used them with a wooden table, and more of what I think of as deco-inpsired accents. There were really funky clear acrylic chairs, a busily-patterned 70’s-looking rug, and a chandelier with lots and lots of crystals. They sparkled like loose diamonds!

But anyway. Work means money, and hopefully one of these days I will be able to put a little of it to things besides necessities and maintenance. That’s what I tell myself every time I think of having to clean this nasty carpet, or to try to cook on my old stove which is probably a fire hazard: work = money. And although I am not money-hungry (sorry, I’m sure it does sound as if I am, though), it does take some to make things happen.

Speaking of, Danny has a birthday coming up next weekend.

I thought he wanted a laptop similar to the one his brother got Christmas before last. But he pooled all his holiday money, from ALL his families together, and bought himself a nice, new phone. So my gift for his birthday this year is going to be an Unlimited Talk & Text phone card for his phone.

After all the communication fiascoes we’ve had in recent months, I decided that I *have* to make it where the boys can talk as well as text. There have been several instances where that would have come in incredibly handy. And I can not answer texts while I am driving, which is when they hit me with the majority of them. And Danny has a girlfriend now and wants to talk to her instead of just texting, so, yeah.

Well, their dad was going to put them on his family plan, but the price ended up exceeding what he’d been quoted and he opted not to. He did say that since both boys now have AT&T phones, we could all three split the $120 a month for unlimited talk and text on both phones. So the boys are going to pony up $20 apiece, and their dad and I will come up with $40 apiece. That’s actually not a bad price for pay-as-you-go unlimited talk and text. Regardless, I am “not allowed” to add them to the family plan I am on, where it would actually be cheaper. But their safety and ability to contact me when and how they need to and my peace of mind is much more important than the extra it will cost to do things this way.

Crying Wolf

Well, don’t I feel like an ass? I was due at work a little after 10AM. I woke up at 8, looked outside, saw snow falling fast, the driveway, AND the road covered. I checked the news, and our weather outlook showed snow at 8AM, 12PM, 3PM, and 5PM. I called out of work, thinking THAT kind of snow was going to continue throughout the day. I mean, I really can’t risk wrecking my car and all that comes along with that, and I already know the car can’t handle snow. Or I can’t handle the car in snow, whichever it is. And now? At noon we still have snow falling, but everything is off the road. There isn’t much accumulation at all. There was more snow a few weeks ago when I *did* go into work. (In my defense, it WAS warmer that day, so a given that nothing was on the road at that time). I totally could have made it. I still don’t know what the drive home would have held, but for now, I feel really stupid.

The weather is always either nowhere near as bad, or far, far worse, than whatever is forecasted. It’s frustrating.

Originally published at devilishsouthernbelle.net. You can comment here or there.


Okay. So I have this old Beagle named Buddy, who was a stray and very likely always an outdoor and hunting dog. Anyone unfamiliar with Buddy can read my entries about him here if you so choose. Anyway, to make a long story short, it’s COLD outside, and that’s where Buddy stays. So far he seems to be doing well with his Dogloo filled with bedding, and two old blankets and some old clothing that I have been making sure is NOT damp. In fact, when I checked last night, everything in there was dry and rather cozy. And there is enough stuff in there that he can burrow down into it and still be on top of something warm.

Now, though, we’re expecting temps in the single digits tomorrow night and beyond. What do I do? Every time I bring Buddy into the house, he marks his territory ALL OVER EVERYTHING due to our two house dogs being female. So I want to be a responsible pet owner, but I can’t have Buddy whizzing all over everything for several days. It will be enough of a job just trying to make sure he doesn’t try to copulate with one of my un-spayed females. If I just leave him in the utility room or our bathroom (to keep marking to a minimum), all three dogs will likely go nuts until we all settle down for the night. Joe says Buddy can sleep with him, so that’s an option. But still, how do I keep him from spraying everywhere? Buy the doggie diapers? He doesn’t do it because he needs to eliminate and can’t make it outside, he does it specifically to mark his territory. And he is too old and not in the house enough for any last-minute house-training to do any good.

I don’t really know what to do with him. Back when I grew up, our dogs always, ALWAYS stayed outside, even in the coldest weather. They had a doghouse with some bedding, and they always did fine.

Does anyone have any REAL advice, as opposed to telling me how stupid and irresponsible I’d be to leave the old guy out at night? Keep in mind that he normally does not stay in the house, so investing in anything like training kits or really anything more expensive than doggie dipes and Nature’s Miracle just isn’t useful to me at all.

Originally published at devilishsouthernbelle.net. You can comment here or there.


Like any good southerner

Like any good southerner, the first thing I did when I heard we’d be getting 1-2 inches of snow Thursday was run to the grocery store. Okay, Tuesday is just my day to shop, but on this particular Tuesday, it was EVERYONE’s day to shop. I guess people want to stock up on as much as possible before the sky begins to fall on our heads in the form of tiny white flakes.

I have lived here long enough to know better than to read too much into the weather reports, but then again….a snow day or two might be nice. We haven’t had one in so long! And if it does snow? It is expected to stick to the roads due to the frigid temps we’ve been having lately. I do. NOT. drive. in. snow. I do not own a four-wheel drive, or even a front-wheel drive, for that matter. The last time I tried to drive when it snowed, I managed to back out of my parking space, but could not control the car to steer it to a main road. No way will it make it across bridges and around curves, then up the MOUNTAIN I’d have to traverse to get to work. So if it snows? I am stuck.

I don’t really mind except I don’t want to be without the day/s’ pay, of course. But just in case, we are stocked up on soda, bread, peanut butter, soup, chili, crackers, and cocoa. I LOVE comfort food when it’s this cold outside! And I have plenty to read, and plenty to watch. We’ll be so cozy!

Originally published at devilishsouthernbelle.net. You can comment here or there.


Saturn V

For more Wordless Wednesday, go here.

Originally published at devilishsouthernbelle.net. You can comment here or there.


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