Tag Archives: marlene


I spent this past weekend in Yosemite National Park, on a much needed “recharge.”

View from our balcony over the Merced outside the entrance to Yosemite, 3.14.

View from our balcony over the Merced outside the entrance to Yosemite, 3.14.

Like the early spring Merced River, filling back up with water after the thaw and blasting over the park’s granite cliffs, I’ve been in desperate need of a fresh supply of my life-giving essentials to move me into the next phase of my existence. Those essentials are basically sleep, beer, nature, and friends. And I got a whole lot of them this weekend. Continue reading

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The New Skin

It’s now clear that one of my toughest life chapters has been unfolding over the course of the past six months. The cumulative effect of this now half year of horrible job stress, family illness, worry too big for my own good, and general life uncertainty as I near middle age has been, well…

Cumulative. Crap. Cumulative crap.

I’m certainly aware that things could get worse – they have been worse, which is why I’m not willing to deem this the worst chapter. I learned way too early in life not to tempt the universe like that.

But it’s definitely been rough; rough in a way I haven’t experienced in a while. Continue reading

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This is me (on the right) at 35: the age I turned this past weekend…

Me and Marlene, drinking celebratory birthday beers in the sunshine at Telegraph.

Me and Marlene, drinking celebratory birthday beers in the sunshine at Telegraph.

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Ass: Kicked

Update on Operation: Kick the Yard’s Ass.

It has been sufficiently kicked.

However, we cannot take all the credit.

While we DID work nonstop on the yard, every night, for weeks, and we trimmed, and we chopped, and we pulled, and we dug… We just started to run out of time. We wanted ALL the things we despised gone before our housewarming, and needed the clean-up finished so we could stay on schedule for mulching and planting this fall before the winter rain comes.

So there’s our excuse — our excuse for bringing in Marlene’s brother, Michael (a professional arborist), and two super sweet powerhouse gardeners who work on Michael’s crew to help us. In one day — ONE DAY — all the annoying tasks we were struggling to finish were done.

REALLY done.

Not to mention, all the heaps of debris we’ve been generating over the summer and trying to shuffle out in our meager municipal compost bin while sloooooowly cooking our own compost in our yard bin… GONE. Hauled away. I mean, there’s only so fast you can make compost, and there’s only so many weeks in a year for municipal pickup. And that vine monster Trent murdered made a LOT OF CRAP FOR THE COMPOST BIN.

In short?

Ass: kicked.

Our new patio furniture.

Admiring our new deck setup on a rare foggy morning. Note, however, that we’re miraculously in sun. Always sunny in 94619!

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Life [Minus] House

For the past week, we’ve been practicing what I’m now calling “Life Minus House.”

The first week of July has historically been an important week for me, and it seems like it just gets more so as the years go by. So this year, after working our butts off for over a month straight, successfully moving, settling, changing jobs, and reaching stability with our construction projects and our leaking ceiling, we decided to pause and do other stuff. Remember stuff, celebrate stuff, and just enjoy our lives. For one full week.

(Almost one full week — I think when I get done writing this, we’ll probably go to Orchard Supply Hardware to look for some door hardware and maybe stop at Sherwin-Williams to match our good bathroom’s paint. Maybe…)

First off, I started my new job this week, and I had to get some focus around that. Week one was basically a trial by fire, but it was crazy fun and I loved it. I’m managing and curating content for the new art.com e-commerce site, and I love that I’m working on a project called “Get Inspired.” I am inspired. I AM!!!

The new art.com

Totally digging the new job.

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