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No one ever knows where to start when a thousand different thoughts, happy, sad, humorous, vulgar are all running through the mind at once. Today, lessons continue to be what I’m most aware of.
Sometimes I think I am the cause of not-so-deal things that happen to people when I’m around them. Sometimes I even feel cursed. But when the bad things subside or are worked through, I can’t help but notice the betterment of the person. Either their spirits were higher than they were before the unfortunate circumstance, or they learned how to better communicate (and thus, manifest) what it is that they want, or are more grateful or aware… whatever it may be, they are better off afterwards than they were beforehand. But still, the fact that unfortunate things happen everywhere I go (recently) is somewhat disconcerting.
I, for one, feel like I just worked through half a year of unfortunate circumstances. One unfortunate thing after another occurred to me. But I had a great support system and I managed to keep my head up and my heart in “the game”. And then, with no warning (not that it was needed) things shifted and good things began happening. I met new people that I really connected with and I began feeling supported physically, not just emotionally.
Now I’m back home on the West Coast after 5 months of traveling and I’m in a space of “what next”? What do I want to put my energy into? I feel like I’ve spent my adult life (thus far) supporting others with their visions. Don’t get me wrong, I’ve enjoyed it, and it has helped me in defining my own visions and desires. But now I’m at a point where, although I’m still very young, I’m just a liiiittle bit done putting so much of my heart and soul and sweat into projects that I don’t stay involved with past my putting extreme amounts of energy into them.  Whether it’s because I move towns, or I simply down have a lot of time, or it takes money to be involved… whatever it’s been, I’m feeling a bit drained from it.
 My BEST friend stopped me yesterday while we were playing catch-up over the phone and she said “You love Mark Twain, don’t you”? To which I replied “Well, yeah. Of course, he’s one of my favorites”. “Then ‘Don’t be sad that it’s over, be happy that it happened’” she said. I couldn’t help but giggle, and then I had a perma-grin plastered on my face for the following 20 minutes.
She got me. She got me good. And she makes a good point, er.. Twain did. Either way, it’s a good point, but the little kid in me is stomping his little feet and saying “That’s not fair”.  I AM happy that things happen[ed]. But, that doesn’t help me from wanting to prevent more circumstances in which I would be “sad that it’s over”. So I’m back to this point. This point where, I want to go spend a few months here, and a few months over there. But I’m done feeling like I don’t have a physical community, or that my loved ones are all only reachable by phone Facebook. I want to be able to bring a bottle of wine and a bar of chocolate to a friends house and sit down with them and share space (something I’ve not been able to do for over 5 months now).
So, that’s that. I’m just in a place of needing to make decisions about  things, and getting my ducks in a row.
But things are good. The air is fresh. Time is on my side. I do have people I love, who love me back. Laughter and music is in the air, as well as the smell of dirt and mint from the garden in the back yard of the house I’m staying in.
Writing can be so soothing. Even when no points are made, and I still end up at the same place I began. 

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BAM.Bing.Boom. BWAP.

I cannot even begin to bring anyone up-to-date, but I’ve just got to share a piece of my bliss.
First off, I’ve got the best job I could possibly have right now. I work at Next Adventure in Portland, OR. For the last few months I’ve been solely working in the climbing & footwear department (which I love) and here shortly I will begin to work over at the paddle sports center. I’ve learned so much since I’ve moved to Portland (just about this time last year) it’s just craziness. WHO KNEW?!
I anticipate being in Portland for about another year before I venture south-ward. The plan as of now is to attend Prescott college in Prescott, AZ. Though I haven’t applied and really don’t even know where to begin the process, but – that’s the plan.
🙂

Life is great.
I take the ACA ICE next week (Sea Kayaking – Instructor Certification) and then turn 20! Woop.

Thank you to all who have supported me in following my bliss, I wouldn’t be here without you.

Into The Wild. Gosh, what a film..
There is so much to do, and so little time, but so much time, but not ENOUGH time.
…At work today a large robust man told me I looked durable, like I could handle being on a fishing boat making $2000 a week. Another conversation I had lead to the idea of me being a regular volunteer for Audubon and slowly working up to habitat restoration and working with kids outdoors teaching them about birds. – I want to connect some dots. I want to climb, kayak, work with kids and have money as well as be durable. But which order do I put things in? Also, where will school come in? I still want to take spanish classes and math classes next year and then slowly work my way into school again, but I still don’t even know what I want to study or major in and I don’t want to go to school until I know that.
There are things I want, like a video camera, before anything else in my amazing life is missed, but then that expense will set me back a bit. – I need a large sum of money. I’m thinking about donating eggs, or an egg. I think women make like $7,000 doing that, but there are requirements for that too so, blah.
I’m still loving life, in fact the more I do what I want, the more fun I have (obvious statement, or not?).
One drawback being here though is the distance from my family. I miss my dad, my aunt, my cousin and her kids.. and I miss my mom and my brother too, who I never see anyway, but I still miss. And lastly, I miss my grandma. I just want to lay with her and hear what she has to say about things, about life… But who has the time?
What I would give to press PAUSE on life and return when things such as visiting family were complete…

Lastly, I am loving this sweater that old lady told me to get.. it’s red, and lovely.

This morning began with gulping water in attempts to cure the horrible hangover caused by the classic high school go-to, Potters.
Though it sounds like a dreadful start to a day…it wasn’t. To tell you readers (all two of you) the truth, not much brings me down these days. At all. Life is absolutely wonderful. .. Aaaaanyway. After downing 4 jars of water, I tip-toed out of my friends apartment and trotted to my vehicle (Sally, I love her). After zig-zagging and looping all around southwest Portland while on the phone with my dad, I landed at a tiny classic-style diner. They were playing classic jazz and I ordered the Alamode, a mediocre omelet. I sat at the bar alone, eating my omelet, reading my book and LOVING my hazy life.
After my breakfast adventure at 8 am I headed home, then changed my mind and headed to Goodwill where I had a conversation with a lovely older lady who was convinced I needed a sweater (even though I was wearing a down jacket). Ironically enough I ended up with a sweater with a tag that read “Essential”. After the sweaters I b-lined for the kitchen things, who knows why but for some strange reason I love the kitchen section of Goodwills… anyway I found a cup for the love of my life, Casey Schein and then on my way out I saw… well I don’t know what I saw because I still don’t understand what it is, but it was $10 and after the woman at the register convinced me it was a “conversation piece” I walked out of the store with a sweater, a cup and a I-don’t’-know-what.

My life is FANTASTICLY ironic. I love it.

The other day I had a yearning to go to Goodwill. There were some things I needed to get rid of to energetically cleanse my life as well as a few things I was looking for (PANTS)… but what I ended up finding was a cookbook.
My interest in starting to cook more food recently has stemmed from the obvious reason of wanting to save money as well as to better my awareness of what I’m actually consuming. Lately I’d been so busy with work that had been living off of burritos and Odwallas. Although I know those aren’t bad things to be in-taking, after getting a cold out of practically nowhere as well as having emptier than empty pockets, I decided that November was going to be a month of change. So after having to leave work 3 hours early because I simply couldn’t handle the head-pressure and then missing the once-a-month company meeting because I was fast asleep with snot practically puddling on my pillow, I pronounced the start of the November diet. Fresh juices, more greens and making all my own lunches for work, instead of using my 30 minutes of lunch to walk to the grocery store and back, microwave (those who know me well are familiar with my hatred for microwaves, so this is not a happy fact) a burrito and rush back onto the floor.
With my two days off I’ve been reading, writing, going on short walks and making food.
Here is my fantastic lentil soup, inspired by my new goodwill cookbook

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I’m not sure of what shifts have happened exactly to me as a person in the last 5+ months in the Northwest but I’m changed.

Could I possibly be any more inspired?! My goodness. Portland is a lot of things, but one thing it is not, is a dead end. The amount of possibilities presented to anyone with their eyes open in this city is simply astounding.
An energetic bubble of art encompasses this city as well as the likelihood of a rousing experience or epiphany around every corner. Most recently I had the absolute pleasure of meeting Tina Berry and Chris Romain, two bikers who are part of a bigger group presently known as the Cultural Recyclists. The gang began as a group of Pen State students bicycling across the country focusing on learning as much about permaculture and sustainability as they could. The group came across Chris somewhere on their journey and he happily joined the ride.
I met Chris & Tina while I was at work (an outdoor store known as Next Adventure in Portland, which I LOVE).
Just a week or so ago Chris was hit by a car somewhere along the Southern Oregon coastline, he’s okay, but he’s got a broken leg and was flown to a hospital in Northern Oregon. As far as I know, the rest of the crew left the bikes in a small town and got rides up north to collect as a group and support Chris in his healing. –  I don’t know what will come of their journey, though I know they are headed to San Fran. (after they get back to their bikes, they will continue via two wheels.)
Despite Chris’s misfortune I cannot help but be drawn to either join their group (given they would accept me as a fellow rider, which has not been discussed) or do something similar on my own.
I’m drawn to Alaska, I am drawn to alllll of central and south America and I am finding myself drawn to Spain. – I just started a savings account and of course what I want to spend it on is a trip. A ticket to somewhere. A ticket to adventure, but at the same time I hear a voice in my head and a feeling in my heart telling me to spend the money I save (when I get to somewhere around $900 on a video camera…

(A VIDEO CAMERA?!… yup..)

Because I feel that with a video camera the idea of  being supplied with $900 +  to adventure and document it wont be so far fetched. I mean, my dad and I won $10,000 so who’s to say I can’t do it again?
There’s so much possibility. It’s just a matter of deciding what I want to do next.

Beginnings and ends are all a jumble.

When I left Ashland towards the end of May, I expected to be gone for two weeks or so. I planned on going up to Olympia to visit the people who nourish my soul and then return to Ashland and figure out what my next step would be. I brought a shy selection of clothing since I knew I would only be around friends, or tromping around in the woods. I had the basic gypsy-kit on lock, because I had hardly been in Ashland for 5 days before I left for Olympia. (I was still equipped from wwoofing in California)

It is now early to mid September and I’m in Portland. I live in the same house I mentioned in the last blog, the one in SE Portland. After a YMCA summer camp job flop I found myself practically penniless in Portland. Thanks to Randy I had a roof over my head and internet connection to link me with job searching. Within a few weeks I landed a job at REI, needless to say I was JAZZED. I loved it there, the training was unbelievably useful and the people were friendly. But after about a month of working there though I realized I was hardly making enough money to cover rent and the commute was 20 minutes of driving on a good day and sometimes even took upwards of an hour, so I planned on getting another part-time job closer to the house to cover other costs. But before I got my second-job hunt underway I got a call from Mike, the Next Adventure manager. (WHAT?!)

Mike left a message asking if I’d come in to chat about a job, after running around the house screaming, I called him back and we arranged a date & time. The interview ended with “Well, we have more interviews to do, but we’ll call you after we’re through to let you know either way”. I got a call the next day offering me the job. So I was stoked, a job at REI and Next Adventure?! What could be better? – But REI wasn’t down. Having an employee work at another outdoor store is considered a “conflict of interest”. So, I had to quit REI. Now I’m working four days a week at Next Adventure and I’m able to cover rent as well as some other costs.

My life has been an endless roller coaster since late January and who knows what will unfold next. But here I am, creating my own dream life.

Next mission: find some friends.