"Aunt Kathy"

While we were all there for a very, very shitty reason, it wasn't hard to find the positive. Her husband, Larry said some pretty moving things -- things that drove us all to tears, of course. But things we needed to really think about. Sitting under a pavilion at a park that overlooked the Smokies and Douglas Dam, were four generations of my mom's family.

"Ormond and Boys."

Again, I'm totally one of the dudes. (No, I didn't see and wieners.) But I did learn that some guys go commando under their swim trunks and some don't... apparently not going commando helps prevent chaffing. Nice little tidbit I wouldn't have been privy to if I somehow fell into the 'girl' category.

"RPT: Secret Places."

I'm not a globe trotter just yet -- some day, but not yet --But I have seen a fairly decent chunk of the country. And I know, beyond a shadow of a doubt, the place this photo was taken is, and will always be, my favorite place in the world.

"Weight Maintenance."

This past weekend was bad though, I mean really bad. I spent all of Friday in the car, and dined on fast food for lunch and dinner (which makes me feel sick). Saturday was a bridal shower with the most delicious foods and cake, but before that I had Denny's for breakfast. And after, went to Red Lobster with my mom.

"See you soon."

I'm taking Nhyya and Detra out to a nice dinner tomorrow after I get out of work. And after that, I'm taking Nhyya to pick out her first baby doll. They're moving to California on Sunday and I'm emotionally overwhelmed by this. (I won't say distraught, because that would be dramatic, but I'm really, really, really, really upset.)

Cheers, Ryan!

It wasn't until I cornered Ryan, still virtual strangers, and asked what his "deal" was that I actually learned he wasn't really a student in the class. And Ryan earned the new nickname, "Phantom" for the simple fact that no one ever witnessed his presence, but there were always signs that he had recently been present.

Cinco De Mustache

Aye, Aye, Aye-Aye. Cinco De Mustache ...

Bums Talking Politics

Then, I shit you not, he stopped mid-sentence, looked at the Obama sticker on the side window of my car, and said "there's gonna be a revolution. They're going to kill Obama." And then frowned...

Something Ridiculous

These things -- the dogs and the truck startled me awake. Still laying down, my eyes flew open, my right arm uncrossed from my left, I grabbed my keys and phone, and jumped out of the car . . .

The Wanderlust

Thanks to Leslie, I'm itching for it. I keep looking at her pictures (she's spending time in Hawaii right now and living it up) and I'm thinking, holy crap I need to be some place other than Ocala right now.

8 People

...I resent the way life works. I hate that the most intriguing and beautiful and wise people of my life all passed away before I was old enough to appreciate them and value their wealth of knowledge, experience, and stories.

Problematic People

In my childhood there were people, famous and legendary people, I thought obtained experiences that I could never fathom knowing. But as I grew older, I learned my own father had more, and better, stories to tell than I could ever get from following the lives of the famous.


... I don't secretly long for the day that someone throws me a surprise party. [...] I wouldn't want it to be one of those awkward situations where people gradually leak niblets of information that eventually lead to me knowing in advance that when I arrive at my home, mysteriously, every single light in the house will be off.

Pensacola then Texas

I drank two delicious glasses of Pino Grigio with with my Chicken Brian, then continued the festivities at Loren and Ang's house with the ever so delicious sweet tea vodka Loren served up. Following dinner and post dinner drinks, Trevor, Nick, Patrick, and myself went back to Trevor & Nick's apartment and played Guitar Hero until our fingers fell off.

Friday, January 23, 2015

Pregnant and Pondering # 2: Experts are everywhere.

Posted by Alison Soracchi at 5:49 AM 0 comments
It's interesting how reading one article about the common struggles of sleeping while pregnant will reaffirm my sentiment of being incredibly fortunate these last eight and a half months. In the beginning everyone who heard me say I wasn't having any difficulties with nausea or sleep would tell me, 'just you wait...' At this point though, I'm practically across the finish line and haven't encountered one single, solitary time when I thought I'm not going to make it through the day without vomiting, or I've been laying in bed for three hours and still haven't slept; I might as well get up for the day ... at 2 AM. No, I'm truly fortunate. And you know, I hope that's a sign of a healthy, happy baby - and maybe, if it's not too much to ask, even one who will sleep through the night from the first night he's home. We'll see. I'm certainly not trying to press my luck.

One thing I am struggling with though is my inability to be fully in control of the situation. But that is a fundamental rule of life, right? The sense of ever being fully in control is really a delusion. No one ever truly has that. I know that, but even still find it hard to accept the many unknowns surrounding a pregnancy.

I'm not the person who will tell you how to have a successful pregnancy because I don't know, I also won't tell you that the way to be able to sleep through the night is this or that. I actually believe there is no magic formula. We just get what we get. I know two things and those are 1. that in all the 29 years I was alive and not pregnant, when it was time for me to sleep, I slept, and 2. everyone under the sun will tell you how you're doing pregnancy all wrong and how your expectations or experiences are not valid or realistic.

Seems like my being pregnant makes everyone an expert. That's pretty typical, I'm sure, but also fairly unpleasant. Because, you know, the ironic part is that, were it not for the abundantly flowing hormones in my body, I probably wouldn't care if people were trying to force opinions on me, but also, were it not for the abundantly flowing hormones in my body, those experts would have nothing to advise me on because I wouldn't be pregnant, would I?

oh, the miracle of life...

Can I just meet my son already?

Friday, December 12, 2014

The Great Debate: Cloth VS Disposable Diapers.

Posted by revolutionaire. at 1:28 PM 0 comments
At a point in life when I'm pregnant, looking to save every penny I can, and welcome the tips of anyone who has a knack for any kind of savings solutions, the great debate of cloth versus disposable diapers seems to surface more frequently than any other suggestion.

And it's probably the most polarizing recommendation I've heard yet. Every reaction from "oh god, no" to "best decision I ever made" has been uttered in front of me. Why such controversy? 

As it turns out, cloth diapering can be pretty gnarly business. It never occurred to me that I would have to take a crap-coated towel off my child's rump, dump it into the toilet, flush, then swish the turdy towel around in the clean toilet water, before coating it in baking soda and setting it in a bucket to wait for a washer's worth of them to pile up. That does sound kind of like, "oh god, no" to me.

That's just one perspective though. As one mom-friend was quick to point out, no matter how I approach the diapering process, I will, inevitably, get poop on my skin. She said it is going to happen and the sooner I accept that, the sooner I can make a choice whether to go cloth or not.

Monday, November 10, 2014

Why did we buy this house?

Posted by revolutionaire. at 5:41 AM 0 comments
Well, I've really done it this time.

I'm three months from having our first baby, we're working on getting the nursery set up, JM is doing all the ladder work - taping off the ceiling and spackling any pin holes to prepare the walls for paint - it's going to be cornflower blue. We're having a boy. I'm behind him, spraying the last of the wallpaper with DIF remover (which, by the way, I later discovered contains a chemical known in the state of California to cause cancer... joy).

Something makes him curious and he chips away at a piece of loose ceiling spackling in the corner. Black mold. Fuck. "Just go ahead and get out of the room while I see just how bad this is..."

I'm waiting down the hall, in the kitchen and it just keeps getting worse. My tears start to well up. Just what am I supposed to do with this disaster? Every time we decide to dive into a home project we uncover some kind of puttied-over royal disaster the owner before us left behind - intentionally hidden in my opinion. Because why would any home owner trying to sell NOT intentionally hide any terminal damage?

This puts a screeching halt on our baby room revamp and, worst case scenario - a potential halt to our living in this house. My list of tasks for today has grown exponentially, my emotions are running insanely high and I'm indescribably angry. I can't decide where to start, so last night - after finishing all the laundry (which is a major feat of strength and endurance) and watching the Walking Dead, I start making a list. This list, so immeasurably overwhelming, compels me to stay awake and work toward accomplishing something. I know it's too late at night to get anything on the list finished, but I can certainly start something and I definitely can't sleep - so what's the harm? I ended up cleaning the master bath tub. It's all I could do. It's the only thing that sounded satisfying. So I did it.

I am just so incredibly disappointed in myself. I look around this house and I know I haven't taken the best care of it. Since buying it in 2012, my complacency has created an open door for pests, water damage, mold, financial burdens and so much more. What a lesson to learn! I am so upset with myself. So angry. I knew going into home-ownership that I would need to be committed, that I would need to dedicate time and attention to this place. I KNEW THAT. And yet, I didn't do it. Or, I didn't do it enough, rather. In many ways, I've tried - maybe. I feel like I have, but who knows. I put on a great facade. I make it look well kept. It's not. It's a polished shit hole. Truly. And we're stuck with it.

So where do we go from here, right? We call our insurance agent first and ask what our policy covers because the next step is to call a home inspector to investigate how bad the damage actually has gotten. And when that person does their assessment, I want to be prepared for what comes next, whether it be a $5000 bill for damage repair or a $500 deductible for our insurance - whatever. I need to be prepared.

I talked to my dad on the phone this morning. That always helps me feel better. He said something I already knew, but hearing it from him makes it seem more real - we just need to make a list of improvements or fixes we need to make and then each weekend, we need to work on fixing or improving something - anything. Because with a baby, it's only harder. Obviously. And without a plan, none of it will ever get done. And we need to do all the things on our list without hemorrhaging money from our pores. I guess it can be done ... I'm not really sure, honestly. I just keep going back to one specific question.

Why did we buy this house?

Sunday, February 23, 2014

Make your own way

Posted by revolutionaire. at 4:41 PM 0 comments
I have this overwhelming desire to do better with my life, to find something more worth doing, to find a way to commingle my home happiness and my work happiness. 

Maybe everyone feels that from time to time. Maybe not.

Lately I have realized many of my friends have made a living doing what they love. I know entrepreneurs, writers, photographers, artists, and humanitarians. And I know me. And what do we all have in common? The passion for what we love so greatly. So how is it then that I find myself parked in a mildly satisfying, depressingly paid corporate job when my friends have found the way to feed their passions and fund their lifestyles? 

What am I missing? Perhaps just the bravery to take he leap.

I have a passion for something. And that is art. No, I won't get more specific for you. I love art - all mediums. I am a photographer. I have been a painter. I am a paper craftsman, a writer, and a ceramics amateur. I am many things and love all things related to art. And in the small community I live in, I see a niche for someone like me. I see a need for the artists that live here, that visit here, that want to learn. 

So, now what? How do I start? 

First, I have made a list of friends I know who have made their own way in this world. And, friends, if you're reading this and you think i may be referring to you, I probably am. I may call, I may write. I need direction or ideas to get me started on this path. And once I am started, I'm sure it'll go very well. 

Here's what I envisioned: a cooperative art studio, gallery, and supply hub. A place where local artists could work and display their work and also a place where community members, visitors, and everyone in the world could visit, shop, and express themselves. I see this co-op claiming a majestic, historic home - something with appropriate, artistic character. I picture a lush front yard with a hammock and a front porch swing to set a very welcoming and serene tone. I see a great room designated as the gallery where we could show our latest works - with places to sit and observe the art, really soak it all in. And, if the artist so wished, offer them for sale. I envision a large, naturally well-lit room with hardwood floors for easy cleaning as a place for the artists to work on their projects. I see high, dusty tables for standing to sculpt clay, easels for the painters, and communal stools and tables for working on anything and everything. I envision another large room with more tables and stools. And in the closet, every kind of paper craft supply you could imagine. And another room for simply relaxing, for feeling the world around you. And another room with a small counter and register and a perfect little couch to sink into when it's quiet to read an inspiring book. I see a back room full of well-organized supplies and materials. All inventoried and priced to sell if someone happens to need something. I envisioned teachers doing classes here, artists doing craft workshops - all to inspire and invigorate the creative minds, while bringing in the revenue we would need to keep the roof over us, the lights on and the supply closets well-stocked. 

I imagine this place to be open to the public, of course, for art classes and clubs, hobbyists, and crafters. And ideally, these artists, these hobbyists would become involved in the co-op. They would come to us for space away from the distractions of home, of family, and of work. They would come to us for eir own workshop ideas and projects and is few person co-op would grow into a community staple. 

I believe in this Idea. I know it can work and that it is purely a matter of finding the right people to accomplish it together. I can make this happen. Now I am off to network a little before it's too late at night. 

Sunday, January 26, 2014

"You're looking slim!"

Posted by revolutionaire. at 7:28 PM 1 comments
We went to the gym yesterday. It was pretty excellent. After almost convincing myself not to go, JM finally got my head right and talked me into going with him. I hit he elliptical pretty hard did 100 crunches before calling it a day and heading home to clean house. But before I left, I got the gym compliment so far - "you're looking slim! Whatever you're doing, keep it up; it's working." 

Those two sentences, two sentences that took Ian just seconds to speak, will resonate with me until the next time someone says something equally as motivating. "You're looking slim!" When I don't feel like working out - "you're looking slim," when I'm tempted my treats brought into work by a client - "you're looking slim!"

So I keep going. And I will keep going because it makes me feel better, stronger, and more confident. And you know, it's not that I'm not confident - I do love myself. I just want to be in the physical shape I should be in for my age. I want to be healthy, active, and agile. I even want to inspire others. I want to be able to motivate other people to make positive changes in their lives too.

A new person has added me on SparkPeople! I'm thinking this is a wonderful opportunity for me to reignite my motivation for self-improvement and involvement on SP. I thoroughly enjoy the website, but I seldom ever go in it. Maybe having a new friend to motivate, share stories and feedback with, and learn from will help me stay focused and dedicated.

Here's to a wonderful 2014 for my personal fitness. 

Thursday, January 16, 2014

How could anyone expect me to actually leave after seeing this sleep sesh?

Posted by revolutionaire. at 4:47 AM 0 comments

If there has ever been a day that I wanted to get back in bed and snuggle over go to work, that day is today. And, honestly, who could blame me?

Monday, January 6, 2014

Revolutionaire's Resolutions.

Posted by revolutionaire. at 7:52 PM 0 comments
1. I resolve to write more frequently - I am off to a solid start on this one. Every once in awhile I think about how clear my mind was when I wrote more often. Granted, I had all the time in the world and an employer who didn't care - or maybe didn't know - what I was ever up to in the office. And I had time to stimulate my mind by reading, reading, reading all over the internet. As I type this, I recognize the excuses I'm making - time, time, time. News flash though - there are still 24 hours in a day; I have just become less skilled at managing them. Maybe writing took a back burner, maybe I dove into my new work, maybe I lost interest. Who knows. All I know is that I want to write again - I want to clear my mind and find my inspiration again. And I know writing will get me there.

2. I resolve to consciously ask more questions - I was spending time with the wife of a college friend over the weekend - a couple we are hoping to spend more and more time with this year - and I thoroughly enjoyed our conversations. As the day ended and I reflected on how everything went, I realized I barely know Lindsey and it's no one's fault but my own. When I replayed the day, I realized she gave me so many opportunities to learn about her, but I didn't ask enough questions. It's easy to make small talk in the moment and then excuses after the fact. The challenge is controlling the moments and really seizing all opportunities to develop deeper relationships with people.

3. I resolve to say exactly what I mean more often - sometimes, when under pressure or stress, I truly struggle with verbalizing what I mean to say or specifically asking for what I need. This happens to me at work a lot more than in my personal life. My boss and I have talked through this a few times - get to the point and get to it faster - know what I need and ask for it.

4. I resolve to accomplish more firsts - for starters, I will travel to new places. We will accomplish this one in May when we take our 'honeymoon' trip to Ireland and Austria. Jon-Michael and I would like to go on a road trip. Unless things change, a long one won't necessarily happen this year, but we're still going to start planning it. We want to go camping - we wanted to do this one last year, but we didn't make it happen. The good news is that we have a few places picked out already. Camping should be easy.

5. I resolve to be more physically fit - near the end of 2013, Jon-Michael joined TYH gym and I renewed my membership. He has done remarkably well considering he didn't think he'd want a membership. He rediscovered his love of running and has made a great routine for himself. Enough about him - what about me. I love that he is going to the gym - it's inspiring me and keeping me on track. I have created a solid routine for myself too - now it's just a matter of seeing the results.

What results, you may ask: how about overall happiness, better health, clearer state of mind.  I'll get it all when I start tying together all these resolutions.

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