Dear Darlings,

I hope all is well for you. It's still hot in our little Northern California town. Tomorrow is supposedly going to be the hottest of the days. I'm dreading it as our house won't cool past 78 degrees during the day even with the air conditioner on. I think it is due to our house having very little insulation. Regardless, it's been pretty miserable.

On top of everything else, I am having horrible fatigue and flu-like symptoms from fibromyalgia. I feel awful beyond words. It's too hot to sleep but I'm not really sleepy anyway. We have yet to unpack from our trip fully and there is so much to do and that I want to do. But I can't.

Ronald has been forcing me to lay down and take it easy. He has been doing laundry, taking care of the pups, bringing me my pillow, and helping me get ready for bed. I need to ask for help more instead of forcing myself to do things. I keep getting up to do things and then I can't even move enough to get back to the couch to sit down. I can't believe how bad I'm feeling. 

Needless to say, I'm getting really sad and depressed. I don't even have enough energy to deal with that. It's hard when my life has to totally stop because of fibromyalgia and I don't know when I will feel better. It's not like a flu where there is some estimation of how long it will last (usually no more than ten days), with this, I have no clue. Tomorrow morning I have therapy. Luckily all I have to do is drive there, go up an elevator and sit down. I think I will be able to do that.

R and I are about to go do a little grocery shopping. I need to walk for a bit to stretch out so it will be alright. I need to go to another grocery store too, but am not going to be able to do that for a while. I'm kind of thinking of setting up home delivery for groceries, or at least trying it once since the first delivery charge is waived.

On a sort of embarrassing note, I have been put on two medications for my face. I have issues with trapped pores. I just re-started the treatment which I stopped while in Vegas. My face hurts so bad! I even cut back from what my doctor recommended but she said it would hurt. She also said in three months my skin will look totally different and better. It makes my face look worse in the short term though and it hurts to wear makeup, so I'm going to be a bit of a mess these few weeks. It will be worth it in the long run, and you all will have a break from face pictures of me on here for a bit.

Lastly, don't forget Google reader is gone tomorrow (July 1)! If you haven't switched to a new reader here are some tips. Don't forget to spread the word to your friends and followers!

I hope you are having a good weekend. Do you have any fun Summer plans?

xx, C


home after six days away

We arrived home from Vegas yesterday around noon. Ronald ended up getting a little stomach bug. It was 79 degrees in the house (even with the air conditioner on) and he was wrapped up in a blanket shivering from a fever. Poor guy. He is feeling mostly better today so that's good. We still have to unpack and do all the house stuff. I'm so tired though, I can't imagine doing any of it.

All I really want to do is get out of the house. And of course snuggle our silly pups. I feel like I have the flu from my fibromyalgia though so that makes everything ten times harder to accomplish. I'm surprised I was able to even walk around to take these photos.

Most of this morning I worked on setting up a meal plan for myself. I want to cut way back on sugar. I am surprised how few resources there are online for low-sugar food ideas. I still found some ideas though so we'll see how it goes this week.

I'm so tired of being tired and sore all the time. It makes me sad. Traveling takes a lot out of me though.

This post is so ramble-y but I'm not very coherent right now.

Love, C


NEWS FLASH! (for reals)

Hi Friends! 

If you haven't heard, google reader is shutting down on Monday. That means the whole reading list  (pictured below) that is on your blogger dashboard will be gone. If you do not move the links to the blogs you follow to a new reading list, every blog you follow will be lost to you and there is no way to get them back (unless of course you have memorized the names of every blog you follow or the web address).

Anything you are a follower of will be lost to you (pic below).

I have been using bloglovin' for a few months exclusively and I love it. It is super easy to move your blog following over from google reader too! Here is a brief overview of what to do.

Go to bloglovin.com click on create account. Notice on the create account screen has a note on how google reader users will be able to import their followed blogs.

sign up for an account.

Since I already have an account I wasn't able to show the exact way to import all your blogs from google reader, but it is a very simple process (just click a few buttons!).

Once you have your blogs moved from google reader, finding new blogs to follow is so easy! You can search for blogs by title or explore on the bloglovin' home page.

Below is what popped up when I searched for my blog. It is the first result and all I have to do is click the follow button!

This is my reading list. One thing I love about bloglovin' is I can mark the posts I have read. This really helps me keep tabs on what posts I need to catch up on and is great when I get overwhelmed and just want to start fresh with my reading queue.

I really don't want to lose any of you and have you lose me too! So do something about it if you haven't yet. I hope this note helped. If you have any questions let me know. Thanks for reading dolls!

xx, C


a pinch of our trip

On Sunday Ronald and I woke around four a.m. (my iPhone proves it) to catch our 7 a.m. flight to Las Vegas.

Ronald's 'holy shit it's early!' face on the way to the airport.

I brought this book with me and it is seriously the cutest most wonderful thing. If you are a dog person at all I think it is a must read.

Dog owners write letters to their dog and it is full of the cutest pictures of each pup. I am dying over it!

Taking pictures of my face.

I look like a scary librarian. ;)

My completely adorable mother-in-law Laura showed me a page in her notebook where along with to-dos and business notes she wrote "hold my beer". She doesn't drink beer and has no recollection of writing it. So funny/awesome and just like me, I love her.

On my computer this morning working on decorating ideas for our living room.


I'm so tired today and dealing with a fibromyalgia flare up. Not fun while on vacation. Today I am staying in my room all day and resting. It's hard because I want to do things, but I know if I do it will make things a lot worse.

The main reason we are here is for a safety conference that Ronald and my father-in-law (Paul) are attending (we run a safety and health business). Ronald and Paul are both speaking at the conference which is pretty cool. Paul is speaking today and I'm sad I will miss it. We are all kind of safety nerds (me due to osmosis from Ron) so to everyone else we probably all look like a bunch of geeks.

I can hardly keep my eyes open so I need to go nigh-nigh. Just wanted to check in and say 'howdy hey-hey!' (...ok I would never actually say that).

Love and good things, C



Life is a weird method. Right now I am on a plane headed to Las Vegas for six days. I’m looking forward to it, although I wish there was a way I could bring our three adorable-funny-smelly-wonderful pups. Whenever I go to Vegas I get this strange nostalgic/melancholy feeling about the whole thing. I think about Vegas in the sixties. Women in tight fitted dresses and pillbox hats, men in suits with skinny ties holding martinis, rolling dice and pulling money out of their pockets. 

I like thinking about those days. It makes me happy and sad. I am an old soul and want to go back to those times and experience the feelings, and happenings. I think I was born in the wrong era. 

I don’t know why it makes me so sad. But it does. It seriously makes me want to cry at times, so I try not to think about it all that much. I think it just feeds the overwhelming sense I have of not fitting in. No matter how much I actually do fit in, that sort of necessary feeling doesn’t seep into my guts. 

Part of it is due to my brain being wired for depression. My synapses ricochet through a well-filed pattern of sad and sad and sad thoughts. This isn’t easy to live with. In fact I think about not living anymore and that brings me comfort.

I really dislike that fact. I know I don’t want to die, but I want to die. In reality, it’s more of a desire for a different life. For a fire escape that leads to relief. But those things don’t seem to exist for me. 

So I hop and hope along, you know, doing the normal actions of living while feeling completely abnormal and terrified. My heart isn’t in many things. But my heart runs deep and full to the things it is attached to. Sometimes thinking of that doesn’t work though. 

I face a day to day struggle to continue to exist. A lot of times I think about what it would be like to not even have the thought of suicide enter my mind. That is the case for a lot of people and I admire them and am incredibly jealous too. I live in constant fear. So does Ronald. So do my other loved ones. 

Each day different ‘somethings’ keep me going. One day it may be something Ronald said or did, or looking at my wedding ring. Or the pups and how they would never understand if I was gone. It’s the billowy curtains, planning the setup for our mini-living room makeover, or a song I listen to while washing the dishes. It’s driving with the windows down and feeling that soft hit of wind that smells like trees, and sky, and grass. It’s taking a photograph I’m really happy with, or finding puffy carnations at the market.

The thing is, that is life. And I love it. Even riddled with pain and illness, I still love it.

So I’m so sad and broken hearted. I’m desperate and angry. I’m tearful and anxious and my back is fucking killing me. But I’m here. And even though I’m afraid of losing that ‘here’ each day, I keep going. At times by choice, at other times by pure luck and grit. 

I’m a stubborn bitch so it takes a lot to break me. And that’s one of the major reasons I am still here. I hate losing. I’m afraid of failure. I’m a fighter and pretty damn tough. I’m proud of that and also mad at it because it means I’m still fighting. There is a duality within me of both health and rot. 

But right now, on this plane way up above the clouds I am okay. And there is so much ‘something’ in that.


If you or someone you know is struggling with suicidal thoughts, seek help. Here is a US suicide hotline where you can call or even email with a counselor for support and help. They also have a link to crisis sites outside of the US. Go here for help.



Internally things have been a mess for me these past weeks/months. Life seems to consist of a few options each day. I can stay home and go crazy and commit suicide. Or I can spend the day out shopping where I buy things we don't need and run my body ragged, then come home and face the option of cutting or taking anti-anxiety medication (so far both have been chosen).

I've never faced such intense racing thoughts or felt so out of control in my actions. I seriously am at a breaking point. My self-consciousness is at an all time high. I feel so worthless I don't even fight the thoughts that come to mind, in fact, not many thoughts come to mind to remind me of how worthless I am, it just seems a fact to me.

I ruminate on how bad of a person I am. I experience constant guilt. And not just any talk-myself-out-of-it or laugh it off guilt, but the kind of guilt that makes me want to run my car into a tree or wall while driving on the freeway.

I can think of a few reasons this is happening. First, the longer life goes wrong the more I want to find someone/something to blame (myself), and the more exhausted I become. Second, I'm just starting to face the reality that we won't be able to have children. My whole life that is all I wanted and to consider giving that idea up is one of the worst feelings ever. Third, I am angry. I am angry at so many things it's not even funny and I really struggle with expressing it. Fourth, I am extremely unhappy. I am in constant pain both physically and mentally, I don't feel close to anyone, I feel misunderstood, and like I am unimportant.

Even now, sitting in the backyard on our swing, I feel an immense need to leave the house. It's not just an idea or an option, it feels like a necessity. I feel like I am losing my mind. I feel jittery, overwhelmed, and impulsive. I feel like if I don't leave I will kill myself. So I am left with two options. Leave or die.

I so hope things will get better, so, so, so much. For now I'm holding on.





Oh lordie! I woke at 4:15 this morning from a nightmare and I was too scared to go back to sleep. Not the best way to start the day.

Above is a glimpse of our newly painted living room. I am so in love with the color! Going from charcoal to mint green in a matter of hours (Ronald worked his ass off painting) took a bit of an adjustment. I feel such a lightness being in the space now and feel so much more at home in it.

Nothing has been hung on the walls and I'm only really decorating with flowers/candles and a few of our larger decorative pieces that we didn't stow away while painting. I'm in the middle of working out my design ideas for the space.

We are getting all new furniture other than our coffee table, bookshelf, and entertainment stand. I know I want to use lots of white in the space and also incorporate the dark brown of the floors and ceiling beams in some areas. I am going to get floral lace sheers to replace our plain sheer curtains. And I'm going to edit the crap out of my normal design aesthetic. I love having lots of things around, especially when they are important and meaningful to me. But I also love when rooms have an understated quality to them. I know the wall color we chose is bold so I will have to be smart about every item I put in the space.

I have a few color accent ideas that I will most likely showcase in pillows and throws (oh and the enormous rug we want to get). I am thinking periwinkle blue but more on the silver-grey end, dusty-rose pink, grey-green, emerald green, and maybe a navy blue or two.

I am so excited to have an almost blank canvas to work with! I am going to do my best to show my decorative process in pictures and writing out my ideas. So keep an eye out!

xx, C



Today we are saying goodbye to the charcoal grey walls in our living room. I have loved dark statement colors for a long time, but this year I've become more sensitive to my surroundings and the darkness of this grey room makes me feel uncomfortable and unsettled. It's strange but just thinking about it makes me want to leave the house. No wonder I have been spending most days wandering around town these last few weeks.

Out of the ten color samples we tried, we went with the one above. I love how it has a minty-cream quality to it but is understated enough to still be a neutral palate for pretty much any accent colors or artwork.

Ronald is going to do the painting as I would be destined for a flare-up if I joined in. I am going to try to prime and re-paint our fireplace white. It won't require much reaching and bending so we'll see if I can do it.

I'll try to snap some photos of the painting process. Stay tuned...

xx, C



Cricket's worried faces.

It's been a rough day. My depression goes back and forth between manageable and disastrous. I'm feeling really impulsive and I go from being ok to wanting to kill myself in a matter of minutes. It's so hard, I don't know how much more I can take. 

I had therapy at noon and I was a mess although I did make some progress in some areas. I stopped to run an errand on the way home and saw a homeless couple looking for handouts. While at the store I put together a bag of granola bars, water, gatorade, sunscreen, and snacks. As I left the parking lot to go to where they were, they were gone. I got really bummed about that for some reason. Oh well...

As I headed home I started having a panic attack. It got pretty bad but I was able to calm down. I haven't really eaten anything because I am worried I will throw up due to my anxiety. 

Some days are just shitty. I want to say "some lives are just shitty" that is how I would describe my life. I seem to never catch a break, and things keep getting worse.

I'm going to read some poetry, and maybe have some yogurt. I leave you with this poetry excerpt that I have loved for years:

"And leave you (inscrutably to unravel)
 Your Life: the fearful and ripening and enormous
 Being that -- bounded by everything, or boundless --
 For a moment becomes stone, for a moment stars."

- Rainer Maria Rilke (translated by Randall Jarrell), 
  in Randall Jarrell, The Woman at the Washington zoo (1960)



Hi Love!

I thought I would post some of my favorite things today. I'm a bit of a mess and I keep thinking it's Friday for some reason. At least I'm listening to good music, and still wrapped in a blanket even though it's going to be hot today. Anyway, let the favorites begin...

I use these Faber Castell fine point pens for most of my sketching. 
They are waterproof which means I can watercolor on any sketch I want.
My budget friendly art pen choice are Sharpie pens.
At five dollars a three pack they are a great deal and are also waterproof. 

I can't live without a steno book or legal pad for notes.
I write in them usually a few times a day and go back and forth between each type.
They are so inexpensive which is nice, and I don't feel bad tearing out pages for to-go lists
like I would a fine bound journal.

I'm loving this color combo for a glamorous Summer. 
I haven't used them yet but I hope they look as pretty on my nails as they do in the bottle.

This Garnier eye roller is a life-saver after a long cry or panic attack.
It really does decrease under eye puffiness, but my favorite thing is how it cools 
my eyelid. This stuff is cheap and sold everywhere, I highly recommend it.

I have loved this tea for a long time. I don't drink tea as much as I would like
 and want to change that so I bought a box of this as motivation. 
It is simple and understated, but stronger than many herbal teas out there. 



Do you drink hot tea on Summer days? Do you like your tea (hot or iced) plain or do you add lemon or some other goodie?

xx, C



garden bunch (from the market)


mint sapling from a friend

crazy-eyed bird garden ornament

peony plant

Baby lemon. It's just a little bigger than a pea and so cute! We have a few on our tree, so excited!

this geranium will not die no matter how many times I overwater/forget to water it

morning Melia stretch


It's a five a.m. wake up kind of morning.

Going to the doctor due to an ear infection...I'm scared like a little girl.

Today I'm hoping to tidy my desk, clean the kitchen, and relax with a cup of tea.

Love, C