Sunday, February 22, 2015

Tax Man

I’ve never enjoyed filing my income tax, but now that I’m my own business I hate it.  I owe.  And I knew I would.  I’m sure I’ll not have enough saved in 6 weeks to pay it all, and still live.  So my plan is to save as much as I can and then get the vouchers from the IRS and keep paying all year for last year (2014) and next year (2015).  I want to pay everything I owe and will owe, so it’s not so painful at tax time.  Or worse so they don’t cart me off to prison.  Orange is NOT my best color.

And I have always been very good at entertaining myself, by myself.  With books and videos and games and conversations on line. I have never really needed the night life that I could have here in the Windy City.  And if that exploration has to wait a year for me to catch up, then so be it.  I have a plan of action and I will pay my taxes like I always have when I worked for someone else for a living.

Its has always been so hard for me to save money.  One of my fatal flaws.  But I know I’m also very stubborn and once I set my will or sights on something I get it done.  And I will succeed in this as well.  I have to.  And I think I have the right frame of mind about it.  All of this chatter is just my brain being worried about it.  That will be a good test for me.  To see how much I actually do worry about it.  I hope I can get that part under control.  Obviously it isn’t yet.

If I could find a serious buyer for the car that would solve all my problems of last years taxes and put me only one quarter behind.  Which is still a sizable amount but at least I wouldn’t owe…yet.  

See there goes that worry again.  I’m taking the rest of today to not talk about it or think about it.  And if I have to follow last nights White Russians with morning Baileys, chocolate and whipped cream in my coffee to do it, so be it.  I’m off work today and can do what I want.

The scared part of me almost believes that I did this to myself so that I’d have a good excuse NOT to go out and meet people yet.  Almost. That needs more thinking about.  And I promised myself I’d not worry today.


Sunday, February 15, 2015

Acceptance-Raise Your Glass-Pink

I don’t talk much about work in this blog because it’s not the thing in my life that needs fixing.  I have finally found what I love to do and it’s raising children.  I should have known as a child. My favorite game was “playing house” and I was the mommy and all my stuffed or otherwise, dolls were my kids.  It's a role in life I always knew I wanted to play, motherhood.  I took it very seriously but was always considered the fun mom.  I guess I was the hard mom when I needed to be thanks to my mom and the way she raised me.  But my kids are grown now and are people I would want to be friends with, and are.  I’m lucky.  But my life without children in it seems bare, and vastly less fullfilled than with them.  When I realized this, is when I decided to become a nanny.  And I finally enjoy my work.

The family that I watch is half Chinese and half Philippine so the cultures are vastly different from my English/German heritage.  I’m a boring American, and I am learning a lot about their culture as one is second generation American, and one was born in China, with lots of family all over this country and some still in China.  One of the fathers (grandfather to the children) is still living in China and comes to America for the Christmas and summer holiday.

This weekend was Flower Girls first birthday, and I was invited to share in the family event.  No one is invited except family.  No friends were there, only family…and me.  I was more honored than I could express.  And had so much fun sharing stories about Flower Girl and her accomplishments with her five teeth, and trying to walk unassisted, and her growing vocabulary that is starting to be understood by more than her parents, me and her little brother Beatles Boy.

What I didn’t expect after lots of food, cake, passing around Flower Girl, applauding Beatles Boy, and many, many presents, was when I decided to leave.  I knew I’d get special hugs from Beatles Boy and a cute little hug and wave from Flower Girl, they see me more than they see their parents.  But I got a very American and stoic hand shake and a very warm Chinese hug from the entire group of family.  Some even whispered thank you for taking care of our little ones, and bless you for taking such good care of them.  One of the aunts said to me that it was very clear how much I loved them, and she was smiling.  Everyone was so full of love and respect, especially from the grandparents.  Which is the real test in this culture, probably in all of them if we’re being honest.  But something about this culture where the parents of the parents still can have a say in what goes on in their children’s and grand children’s home, made me feel like I’d passed some kind of very important test.  One grandma shook my had politely before she knew who I was, and looked at me with a skeptical pause as to why I was here, then her daughter introduced me as “the nanny and my name” and her face broke into a huge smile and she said, “I’m so happy to meet you.  I have heard a lot about you.  Very good reports.”  I know I blushed and was proud, but I didn’t feel I am doing anything that doesn’t come naturally for me.  I guess that’s why I’m good at this.

All in all I’d have to say, the love I was surrounded by and not even on a day that was about me in the slightest, put this Valentine's Day close to the top of one of my favorites.  I did not feel single, nor alone, nor did I feel like I should be wearing black and boycotting the whole holiday.

And I learned something new from a grandma.  In China they count the time the baby spends in the womb, so with the Chinese New Year also being on Saturday, Flower Girl was two in China and one in America.  Interesting that they start charting life when they observe it, at conception.  Perhaps if we did that, we would take better care of ourselves as expecting moms.


Sunday, February 8, 2015


I’ve been thinking a lot about change lately.  How They say that people change, or things change and that you can’t deny or do anything about that.  That how we have almost become complacent in our acceptance of people never being faithful or committed in relationships, because, well, people change.

And I disagree with this wholeheartedly.  In my experience, I have found that people who say they have had a change of heart, are not to be trusted.  I believe that you can commit in friendships, or romances, and that monogamy does exist and for likeminded people is still full of passion and romance.

This is not a fantasy, it’s a fact.  I’ve met people who have been married for decades and still look at each other like the first time their hearts knew it was real, and it was forever.  I am lucky enough to have one special man that effects me that way, out of all of the past lovers or husbands, this man is still the one that makes all others in the room vanish when he is present.  It’s an amazing feeling and one I can’t help but be true to.  See that’s the secret.  Find someone that sets your heart and mind afire with passion and wonder.  Keep the person that you want to share everything with.  The good, the bad and all the boring in-between stuff.  Keep the one that sometimes scares you with their plans but always includes you in them.  And you will never be in a marriage or relationship that is wanting or stagnant or worse without love and passion.  That kind of feeling doesn’t change with time.  It stays strong with time, because as a couple you are changing together, you have no choice.  Because everything that you desire is wrapped up in the pleasuring of your partner.  That pleasures you, to see them happy, will make you happy too.

And how do you do this?  Well, one simple thing, be yourself.  Life is simple, so is love.  Be who you are and you will attract the perfect person to share your path.  I’m not saying that it will be all hearts and flowers and that you’ll never fight or argue about little life issues.  But I am saying that the only arguments will be little, life issues.  Never huge deal breakers.  Because like minded people don’t have to set rules and fence each other in.  They trust because it’s unthinkable to be with anyone else.  I’m not saying here that you won’t look, that others won’t make your head turn.  I’m saying that your feet won’t follow.  Experience will tell you that nothing is better than what you have found.

I’ve been in relationships where I’ve felt his for my man but he has not returned it as wholeheartedly and I’ve been in relationships where it was the reverse, I was the one who didn’t love as wholeheartedly.  The evidence in these relationships is that they didn’t last, hearts changed, feelings changed, because they were not shared emotions or passions.  No ones fault.  Just the learning curve and experience as we grow up.  In looking back on that one man that still sets my heart and soul on fire, I know I am that woman for him too.  I believe him when he tells me, and it’s unthinkable to not do so.  Because when it’s real, you just feel it.  You may not be able to tell someone why you love them or anything about them that seems special enough.  But thats the point of love.  You can’t explain it.  It just is.  And love that can last many, many years is rare indeed.  Hold on to it, if you have it.  Don’t smother it with rules and fences.  You won’t need them.  Learn to trust in your own heart, and if for some reason it gets broken.  You pick up the pieces and try again.  Because failed love is never your fault if you go into it with an open mind and open heart.  And if you are being yourself and not misrepresenting yourself to make the person love you.

Love and passion is about trust and caring for the other person above and beyond yourself.  Not about being taken care of, or changing the person to fit your mold of perfection.  Real lasts.  Fantasy dies.


Sunday, February 1, 2015

Let It Snow, Let It Snow, Let It Snow

Watching it snow out of the two tall windows in my modest studio apartment, fills me with peace.  What is it about the snow that seems to change everything for me?  Its almost like I still approach snow as a child would.  Waiting for it to stop so I can get out there in play in it.  I suppose it’s because I don’t have to shovel it or really do any of the work that comes with snow.  But I think it’s more than that.  Memories flood my mind when it snows.  Snowball fights with my kids and later watching them go at it, with coco later.  Driving without a care around curvy roads at Garden of the Gods with high school mates.  Long walks and serious but loving talks with Mr. Hopeful.  Drives in the wee hours in the mountains of Colorado, when the virgin snow reflects back a purple hew from the full moon.  Snow.  I love it in all its forms, big snow globe flakes or fine sifting like now.  It always seems to put me in a spirit of good will, like the holidays that fall during winter.  Maybe that’s why a white Christmas and Thanksgiving seem much more joyous to me than a bare one.  I’m sure I’ll complain during my morning commute tomorrow, just like everyone else, but for now, for today, it brings a smile to my face.  I hope where you are, especially if it is snowing and cold, that you have warmth.  The warmth of family and friends and fond memories, as we say goodbye to January and hello to February.  Its time to welcome back spring with candle ceremonies dressed in red and white.  Be at peace and welcome back what you want to attract in your life.  Breathe in the cold air and be thankful for the passing of winter.