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Right Foot In. Left Foot Out.

Do the hokey pokey and turn yourself about…

Right Foot.
My right foot stepped out a few months ago. It jumped the gun announcing that we were moving and packed up half of the house. It lead our minds and our hearts halfway in to a new adventure. We were exited and terrified.

Left Foot.
The left foot planted itself firmly, right where we are and said no, we are not leaving. It opened the door on jobs, raises in income and reminded us of everything that we loved here in Arizona. We love the West and in our hearts, Arizona is home.

So, now, with my left foot firmly in a comfortable place and my right foot dangling about in the scary unknown, I have arrived at an impasse.

I do not know if I should stay or should I go?

I don’t know what to do. I just keep crocheting, writing, researching and asking the question…what do I do? what do I want to do? I am hokey-poking about, turning in all kinds of circles and I haven’t a clue.

Damn it…

Be brave.
Jamie Christine

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Out of Gems

Occasionally, I play those cheeky games on Facebook. I limit myself to one at a time because they tend to be time-consuming and you always reach a point in the game where it is nearly impossible to be successful without purchasing on all those special, sparkly gems that you need for all those extra game goodies. All those lovely unicorn trees and dancing water flower sprites inevitably end up being a requirement to complete a mission or adventure. These games are designed so that eventually you will need a sparkling pink marshmallow boat load of gems in order to be successful. In a cruel twist of fate, the world you were building suddenly comes to a screeching halt unless you dig into your wallet and surrender those debit card digits.┬áThere is always that small amount of money that you easily rationalize spending. “Pft! It is only a $1.99”, however, once you give into “it is only” then everything becomes a slippery slope and soon, you need more gems so you spend more money on precious glittery little gems to fill your cartoon kingdom with yummy flying magic dragon tarts.

Meanwhile, here in the real world, I live on a tight budget that does not allow for too many gem purchases. My household tends to allocated our money for more tangible items such as food or a place to live. I know that there our other households where twenty dollars a month isn’t a deal breaker but at my house, there are weeks where twenty dollars is the difference between eating or not. That is just my less than sparkly reality. I do, however, still enjoy playing a game every now and then.

More often than not, I have to stop playing in all those magic kingdoms because I arrive at that tipping point where I can not continue dwelling in my fantasy world without purchasing gems. I lose out on missions or special buildings due to lack of gems. The worse ones are the special missions for extra wonderful prizes in which I start the mission but find that I am unable to successfully complete it because I lack a sparkly boat load of gems. Eventually, I quit playing.

A few weeks ago I quit another one of these games. I spent weeks building a shiny, thriving city. I attempted special mission after mission, only to fail, repeatedly. My wonderful, carefully planned city became a futile exercise in wasted time. I invested hours planning, decorating, harvesting and selling all kinds of weird items only to run out of time. Every mission designed to only be successful if you purchase gems and use them to grow 300 boots on a tree in less than 24 hours. Sigh. Discouraged, I quit showing up every day.

A week after I abandoned my city. I was grocery shopping when it occurred to me that all these failed missions are ireily similar to how I feel some times. I feel like, years ago, I started out to build a life. I had huge sparkly, magical dreams. In hindsight, all those unicorn, marshmallow, glitter filled, sugar plum visions were fruitless missions that I was unable to complete due to lack of gems. All those elusive gems necessary to a construct a successful life, whatever they were, I was missing them.

Instead, I attempted to succeed despite where you are or what you have. I am not sure that has gone well. My kingdom looks more like a nuclear bomb went off rather than a joyful world of success. The moving to Prescott endeavor is a perfect example. I’ve wanted to move to Prescott for close to a decade, no lie. Finally decide to go for it only to discover that affordable housing for a family with pets is near impossible to find, let alone secure. I need a gem to finish this quest. I have no money to click and make one appear.

I am at the point where I have to ask, do I abandon this effort or do we pursue further?
Where are all the gems?

Be Brave.
Jamie Christine

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Moving Monday

Good Morning! It is still morning right?

I am in the midst of trying to get myself on a new sleep schedule for my job that starts on Friday. Things are a little topsy-turvy at the moment, however, by week’s end they should be a touch better in the sleep department.

Sunday was an eventful day of decision-making at my house. For a few months now we have known that when our current lease is up in December that we would be making a move. I even started sorting through items, using up the food pantry and managed to get one box packed. Just one. My point is we knew were moving. Where we were headed to was a great mystery. Until yesterday. After months of scouring the country and cities galore we have, unanimously, settled on moving to the east coast. The state of Maryland. City? We are currently investigating, Salisbury, MD. Its location suits many of our needs and desires.

Yes, we are leaving Chandler, Arizona. Leaving my beloved west. I am already crying at the drop of a hat when I think of leaving my home. There is a good reason though. Family.

I left the east coast in April 1993 at the young and tender age of 22. I was living in Richmond, VA. I had two boys under the age of two. I was about to be evicted from the worst part of town. On a whim, I called a high school friend in Washington state. She said I could live with her mom. Within a few weeks, I sold what I could, packed what I couldn’t and headed west in Cheverolet Celebrity. I celebrated my 23rd birthday in Kent, Washington. I was there for five years when another friend, said, “Move to Arizona. We are here and you have no one there.” So, on a whim, I did. In May of 1998, I left rainy Washington for the Arizona desert.

I’ve been here almost 20 years. I’ve raised my boys here. I’ve buried one of them here. I have learned to love, laugh and live in this magical desert. Anyone who says there is nothing in the barren desert has not the eyes to see it. There is beauty beyond measure here and community that is welcoming and uplifting. Arizona is my home. I miss it already and I haven’t even left yet. So why leave? I know you are asking that question. I’m asking this question.

One word, family. I am relocating back to the east coast to be closer to family because I wonder a lot about dying. If I were to die suddenly, what would happen to my boys? Since they were raised in Arizona, they really don’t know any of my family closely. If I died, they would be alone, just the two of them. That is the last thing I want.

A second reason is what if other family members died and I never saw them again. I would be devastated. I suppose getting older and wrestling with death a few times can result in a person making decisions we might not have made before. If we suffer enough loss, we come to know how loss often shines a huge spot light on what is truly valuable in life, people. Not the weather. Not your job. Not your difference of opinions. People. Family. They are what matters most.

And so, with those raw and emotional thoughts rolling in my mind, heart and spirit, we are moving back to the east coast. Life is an adventure!

Wow, T-minus 59 days and counting.
Be brave.
Jamie Christine

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Time to move it, move it.

Good Monday Morning!

I hope that everyone had a wonderful weekend. My weekend went by far too fast. Monday kind of crept up on me but I find that happens really easy when you are unemployed. The days all kind of slip into a time warp. At least for me. Adding to my calendar confusion is the fact that my sleep schedule is all upside down. I’ve been falling into the pattern of sleeping days and staying up all night. Attempting to correct that a little bit today.

I have to get myself turned around because tomorrow I have a job interview. Yay!! I have to get all dressed up and actually be prepared to shine in the middle of my sleep schedule tomorrow. Oi-vey!

I am however, super excited about this new potential job. It is in customer service at a bridal salon. Whoo-hoo! I do confess that I prefer hiking boots to heels so this position may seem a little odd for me, however, I do possess a diploma in bridal consulting. So, while it may seem far out in left field, it really is not. For the past decade I have kept up with wedding trends, planning and most of all, dresses. It is not uncommon for me to virtually plan a wedding and store it away in a file folder simply due to the fact that I found the perfect wedding dress.

It is an exciting development in my life. A new plot twist that is sure to bring challenges, learning curves and adventure. Who doesn’t love adventure?

Be brave,
Jamie Christine