An American Highlander

Travels Through My Mind

Year in Reveiw December 21, 2013

Filed under: Uncategorized — charismaloy @ 9:51 pm

100_1158So, I just had an anniversary of sorts. In the early moments of 20Dec2012, I cleared customs in St. John’s and was enveloped in the arms of a wonderful, sweet lady who was willing to fight for me. Few people in my life have actually demonstrated that willingness as clearly as her staging a sit-in in front of the international arrivals gate. That’s when I knew that I had been right all along. I had come home. Some fourteen hours later I was finally able to walk through the front door and found myself exhausted and hungry but surrounded by two people who desperately wanted me. Not for anything I could give them, or any chore  that I could do, they wanted me for me.



Because of these beautiful, loving people, I have spent the last year in discovery.    I have reacquired my passion for photography and my fascination with the  qualities of light. I have discovered that I have a near savant skill in massage, and  my dear ones have been known call me the “Knot Whisperer”. I have also become  a rock and roll DJ on the local community radio and thanks to the miracle of the  internet, am developing a worldwide fan base. I spent this Christmas season with  crochet hook of various sizes in my hands as I created warm and beautiful things  for the precious ones who take such excellent care of me.



The best thing about this last year has been the freedom to learn who I am, to finally drop the masks that I have hidden behind in my life and truly be myself. As regular meals became a normal part of my life, and having the weight of being responsible for EVERYTHING was lifted, I learned to breathe. I learned to play without fearing that someone would think me juvenile, and I learned to flirt.

If you asked someone to describe me a year and a half ago, you may have heard “stick in the mud”, “fuddy duddy”,  or for those who were trying to be nice, “stressed”, “haunted”, or  “lonely”. The ones who were truly honest would have used certain vulgarities to describe me. There were very few people around whom I felt safe enough to drop my defenses and I can only say that I wish they could see me now.

Now, my face sees more smiles and silliness than it does glares and defensiveness. My vocal chords are used more for giggling than growling. I never thought I would see the day when I would giggle, but I find that I have too much happy now and it sneaks out in giggles.

I still have stories in my head, and am jotting them down in folders so that I can explore them later, but right now? For the first time in my life I actually don’t want to hide from my life. I am sure the novelty of it all will wear off and I will get back to my stories, but at the moment I am taking a lesson from my four-legged pack members and living in the moment.  943562_201958509951167_523119041_n

I will try to connect here a little more often. Today I just wanted to celebrate the new me. And see if anybody is even still following this blog.


Leaving the city behind. November 24, 2012

Filed under: Uncategorized — charismaloy @ 9:59 pm

I have to give kudos to Wyoming folks. I have been traveling for the last week, and being the independent gal that I am, I have no issues opening doors or holding them for others. So, I don’t usually notice beyond a passing “thanks” when somebody holds the door for me.

Today I crossed the border into Wyoming and stopped for gas. As I headed in to prepay, a gentleman in front of me (about 20 feet) held the door and waited with a smile as it dawned on my travel stiffened legs that they should move faster.  I finished paying, and turned to go and another gentleman, who was headed in, saw me coming just as somebody at his car hollered at him. He quickly grabbed the door before turning to his friend at the car, so that he could be sure to hold it for me. I reached the door as he turned back and flashed a brilliant smile.

I do love it when I know I have finally left the city behind.

I have been horrendously busy for…. well, I lost track. I do still exist though. That being said, I drove 16 of the last 24 hours, and I am beat, so not really an update. Also, the horrendously busy isn’t over… so probably not going to get to a decent post very soon. I swear, there is an end to this horrendously busy. It is even in sight… be patient my friends, I shall return.  🙂



Changing perspective August 12, 2012

Filed under: Uncategorized — charismaloy @ 3:36 am

This week was…. interesting.

Wednesday, my car tried to eat me. It reminded me of the NCIS episode that featured Abby going head to head with a killer SUV. I got in the car and drove to Walmart to pick up some meds before work. I hadn’t left myself much time as I only needed to run in and back out again, then go across the street to work. When I went to open the door, there was no tension. The door was not going to open from the inside. I know what you’re thinking. Open the window, reach out for the outside handle and life is good, right? That was my first thought too. One problem. My window is off track and doesn’t go down. I was able to flag down a gentleman in the parking lot who opened my door. That’s when I noticed that the OUTSIDE handle gave up the ghost with that last use.

Okay, so mechanical me quickly loosened the door panel and looked inside the door. The three bars that connect to the latch were hanging free inside the door. Cripes, just what I needed. I couldn’t afford to not have my meds, and I really couldn’t afford to miss work for a problem that I couldn’t fix in the Walmart parking lot. So, I decided to cowboy up. I secured the door panel at the window lip and closed the door.

In the intervening days, I have nearly perfected the slide over the center console so that I don’t look like a beached whale at the apex. In the last couple of days, I have done a lot of research and it looks like I can fix this thing in about half an hour’s worth of work. I discovered that this is actually NOT an uncommon problem with this model and there are numerous “how to fix it” videos online. This means, I won’t be going to the cost of replacing the whole door or paying some shop $80 an hour for them to put in a $5 plastic clip. YAY me!! Also, if I am really lucky, a bit creative and terribly logical, I might even be able to fix the window! So, a few more days of climbing over the console and I will pick up the clip on payday. 

I was seriously stressing the cost of fixing this problem, but changing my question from “How can I afford to get this fixed?” to “How can I fix this affordably?” I have managed to leave that stress behind. Plus, I get to learn more about how to fix stuff. That’s also fun.

As you may have noticed in my last post, I decided to celebrate creativity this week. It was a smart move on my part as it motivated me to get back to my own creations. 



Round 3 Goals

1. Devote a minimum of one hour each weekday to bona fide work on each of the three both at-home jobs. This does not include FB, Blogging, Tweeting or other internet perusal, but may include improvements made to blog sites.

I have been inordinately successful at job number one, but needed a bit of a break. Job number two got a lot of attention this week, I even got to spend several hours working on the timeline for one of my WIPs from last round that kind of fell by the wayside in all of the drama of the last months.

2. Finish Fantasies this round. If CM approves it, get it published.

Spent several hours working on the next section of this, and am quite pleased with the direction it is headed.

3. Spend at least 20 minutes each weekday on housework and at least 2 hours on Saturday. Get SOMETHING accomplished in the direction of household maintenance each week.

I got laundry washed while I was playing with my timeline, got books hauled down to the bookstore for trade, and stacked dishes for washing while the little one is napping after church tomorrow. If I have any energy after she goes home to her mother, I hope to go through my closet and thin it out.

4. Start eating more than one meal a day. Consistantly.

I do okay with this on the days that I work, and I worked five days this week so I did okay. Remembering to eat something more than popcorn when I am working is a bit of a trick on my days off. I get too wrapped up to remember to cook. That’s the OCD kicking in again…

Hmmm… Structure….. this could be interesting……


Round 3 Checkin #2 July 8, 2012

Filed under: Uncategorized — charismaloy @ 4:00 pm


The drive was beautiful yesterday as I made the 80 mile trip to my friends’ wedding.




Unfortunately, the drive also took me 80 miles closer to the largest fire in the state and the smoke hung in the air, as you can see. The wedding was a small affair held outdoors and united two of the sweetest goofballs I have known in quite some time.



Needless to say, I got precious little done towards my goals yesterday, I ate far too much that was not on my diet and I had a blast celebrating with some delightful friends. Today I am recovering from breathing far too much smoke yesterday, but I hope to at least get some computer work done, even if I don’t get much housework done.


Round 3 Goals

1. Devote a minimum of one hour each weekday to bona fide work on each of the three at home jobs. This does not include FB, Blogging, Tweeting or other internet perusal, but may include improvements made to blog sites.

I have gotten one hour in everyday on one of the three…always the same one… There is housework visible when I start on the other two… I get distracted. This is why I have been going overboard on goal 3 this week. I am still seeking balance. Once I have acheived balance, I will be all over this goal. So much that I want to do toward it.

2. Finish Fantasies this round. If CM approves it, get it published.

Haven’t touched it.

3. Spend at least 20 minutes each weekday on housework and at least 2 hours on Saturday.

Nope, haven’t touched the house since Thursday, although, I did move the sprinkler today, and plan to do the same in a few hours. Yes, I know, I am just slaving away.

4. Start eating more than one meal a day. Consistantly.

Check… well, for the most part.  I overslept yesterday, so I only ate at the wedding.

Hmmm… Structure….. this could be interesting……