Category Archives: random

Crisis Ended

For a long time, I never thought the day would arrive when I could say these next words, but…

After almost 20 years of captivity, I am finally being released from Utah.

Let me back up a little. Okay. Let me back up A LOT.

When the decision was made, back in 2002, to move to Utah, it was only supposed to be temporary. Yeah. Supposed to be.

My husband at the time, now EH2 (ex-husband #2), was a victim of a downturn in the technology market and was laid off when his company decided to close the fab where he worked. He had already enrolled in college and was going to be starting classes that fall when the layoffs were announced. While we started scrambling to figure out what to do next to support our family, EH2 still wanted to get his degree and make him more marketable in the workforce.

After a lot of discussion, we decided that we would move to Utah. EH2 grew up there, and a large part of his family was still there, which would give us an immediate support system. This would allow him to go to school full-time, as opposed to taking classes around his work schedule, and he could finish his degree faster. The goal was to: get in (to Utah), get his degree, and get the fuck out.

Yeah. That didn’t happen.

When EH2 got his degree, he received a job offer in, you guessed it, Utah. Oy.

By then, sadly, our marriage was on its last leg. It would be another few years, however, before I actually filed for divorce. Once the divorce was final, EH2 was certain that I would ‘get the hell out of Dodge’. But I couldn’t afford to do that. When I filed, I split our debt equally in the petition. He took his and I took mine. The only problem with that was my wage was considerably less than his. So, I asked for just enough alimony to offset the difference. I was never trying to screw him. And when all was said and done, I had enough money to live and support our child, but nowhere near enough to finance relocating to another state.

So I stayed in Utah. Ugh.

To be honest, living in Utah has not been ALL bad. Oh, don’t get me wrong, Utah is plenty bad! We are talking about a highly conservative state, heavily financed by an organization that makes many ask the question, “What happened to separation of Church and State?” It is also a highly populated state, to the point of so very often feeling like there is nowhere to go to get away. And don’t even get me started on the level of ignorance, selfishness, and prejudice I have witnessed during my time here.

What was good, you might ask? Well, I must admit to the beauty of this place, for starters. For being essentially a desert state, you can find so many different topographic examples: red rock cliffs, salt flats, mountains, lakes… I live in a corner of the Salt Lake valley with a stunning mountain view from my patio, which I will miss.

Utah also holds a lot of history. Not just American history (You’ve heard of Promontory Point, right? That’s here. And I finally visited it!), but also personal history. My great grandparents emigrated here from Finland and ran a boarding house in Bingham Canyon in the early days of the Kennecott Copper Mine. How cool is that?

I also found my career path here. I will admit that, when I first moved to Utah, I struggled to figure out what I wanted to do with my life. I had various jobs, but not enough experience in any of them to see a real path forward. I eventually received an opportunity to move into an accounting support position. That was the moment that the heavens opened and the angels sang out to me. I finally saw a field for which I have an aptitude and could use my existing skillset. WIN WIN!

And then, of course, there is TM (The Man). Had I left Utah when I was ‘supposed to’, or never even come here at all, the odds are high that I would likely have never met him (and we have discussed many times about how we could have still met if the Universe wanted to bring us together). In September, we will have been together for nine years. WHAT????? And he is still alive, can you believe it? Trust me, he counts his blessings every day that I have not killed him yet.

So, see? Not all bad.

In a little over a week, however, I will depart for the Midwest. And as I write that, I realize just how weird that sounds for me.

Throughout my time in Utah, I figured that, someday, I would eventually get back home. After all, I am a Cali girl through and through. And the nearly two decades I spent here were never considered as actually being ‘home’. It was just a really long layover on my way to somewhere else. For many of those years, California and Texas were at the top of a very short list. If I couldn’t afford to move back home, which looked more and more likely with each passing year due to California’s economy, Texas was a perfect second choice. And somewhere along the way, Washington got added to the list, but that is a whole other story.

So, The Utah Hostage now becomes The Midwesterner? Hmmm… Maybe I should just take a celebrity cue and become The Woman Formerly Known As The Utah Hostage.

I think it might still need work.

2015 Recap

I’m well aware that we are already five days into 2016, but when have you known me to do anything like this on time?

2015 Events

  • Pounds lost: -20 (and I think I may be understating that amount, as I refuse to get on the scale right now)
  • 4-legged furries adopted: 1
  • New cars purchased: 1
  • School semesters completed: 0
  • Bills paid off: 3? (I think)
  • Custody cases won: 1
  • Major photo equipment purchased: 2
  • Portrait sessions completed: 1
  • Portrait sessions for which I was paid: 0
  • Jobs lost, but not really lost, but just transferred to another department (without my consent): 1
  • Photo contests entered: 2
  • Photo awards won: 1
  • Number of times I was too hard on myself: too numerous to count

Goals for 2016

  • Complete the 52-week savings challenge
  • Go to the gym at least twice a week
  • Go out shooting at least twice a month
  • Find a new home in the kids’ school boundary
  • Review my career goals and options
  • Teach a 16-year old toddler to grow up (thus, preventing a homicide)
  • Take two weekend photography trips
  • Take a week-long family vacation
  • Start paying back The Ex
  • Purchase camera lighting and remote equipment
  • Enter five photo contests


This is what actually comes out when I try to work on a Friday.

 I’m feeling very crafty lately, for some reason. I have TONS of ideas floating around in my head, some of which I’ve researched and definitely want to do. The transition of those ideas to completed projects, however, still remains elusive. Notice I said completed projects. My latest start showed up on Instagram yesterday, and as of bedtime last night, was coming along nicely. I wish I could say that actually meant something. For now, I will just say yesterday was a good craft day. 

A change is coming. One that I’m still struggling with. A LOT. I don’t know if I’m ready to say it out loud just yet, at least not with any real conviction. I know that as soon as I do say it out loud, I will be thrown into the stocks and pelted with rotten vegetables until the Crown Prince comes to announce that I am descendant of an ancient royal line and therefore above this kind of treatment. Sheesh, my mind is such a volatile place. 

My new camera has been an absolute BLAST. I can’t believe just how quiet it is. AND FAST OMG. I may actually be able to take fewer shots of an image to make sure I get a good one. Then again, I may just keep shooting. And shooting. And shooting. I am hoping for really good weather this weekend, so I can try to get the shot(s) of Tim and me that I want. It’s time to change Tim’s FB cover photo, so his friends and family will stop thinking his BFF is his GF. [sigh] Sometimes I am just an overly awesome photog.

Will Social Media and I ever be able to repair our relationship? I really don’t know. For now, I’ve been hiding over in the twitter corner, because I think I seem so much less pathetic at 140 characters or less. [shrugs]

Motivation. I has none. Is it 5 yet?      


I haven’t written here in a while. Quite a while, in fact. My many unfinished posts didn’t show any real signs of finishing, so here they all are in one big recap.

Tomorrow (Thursday) is a milestone. And a pretty big one too. I still can’t believe it’s here. Kind of crazy, huh? And yes, I’m being vague on purpose. But don’t worry, you’ll find out soon enough. You only have to wait a few more hours. Think of how long I’VE been waiting!

It’s been over a month, and I still haven’t found my go-to style for this haircut yet. That is why you haven’t seen many pics of it. Well, that’s one reason why anyway. An A-line bob should be easy to style, right? I guess it is easy to style, but none of the ones I’ve tried so far scream, “YES, YES, YES!” In fact, most of them scream, “MILE-HIGH FOREHEAD!” I have figured out that my conservative choices for an easier transition from long to short is just not cutting it (pun very much intended). My next appointment will be me telling my stylist, “Stack that shit! STACK IT! AH! AH! AHHHHHHHHHHH!”

Speaking of my hair, we’ve reached the start of the “visible root” phase of this latest color. Which means in about a week or so, I will post a pic holding it out, threatening to chop it all off and go for a brunette Susan Powter look. If you’re old enough to know who she is, say it with me… “Stop the Insanity!” If not, Google people. If it’s not your best friend yet, pfft!

So, mah boys. Pretty good showing in the first (season) game under new management, right? Well, I was pretty happy with it. And at least I got to watch most of the second half (gawd damned greedy college and their stinkin LHN). Unfortunately, the celebration was short-lived, though, because there is no rest for the wicked. Especially when next Saturday’s game is against BYU. And your QB is out for concussion symptoms. And two of your offensive tackles are suspended for violation of team rules. What. The. Fuck. We are so screwed.

Oh, and by the way? I’m a Bruin again. I know that you know that I’m back in school this semester. And you know that I know that you know I’m back in school. But did you know that SLCC’s mascot is a BEAR? Well now you know. Kind of fitting when you think about it actually. Especially during a certain time of the month.

School is going pretty well, even though it’s only been a couple of weeks. I’ve gotten ahead in both of my accounting courses, so that I make sure to not get behind. What I mean by that is I have completed all homework due through this Sunday in those two classes. It was done over last weekend. But that’s not enough. After two years of homework every weekend, I want more of them freed up. I will pretty much have photography homework every weekend during this semester, which is fine. I just want to stay way in the black on my accounting homework. I’m figuring out if I can work ahead even further. Just not sure yet if it will be possible.

We’ve completed step one of Move 2014. One notice to vacate has been submitted; the other one will go in at the end of this month. We know the areas where we want to live, or I should say the areas we need to live to keep the kids’ transition to a minimum. Now it’s time to start looking. By the end of October, we will all be in one place together, as a family. We’re really here. Crap. Am I ready for this?

A friend of mine is going through a really rough patch right now, and is faced with making a very hard decision. I want so much to be able to hug her and tell her it will be ok. I hate the fact that she and I live so far away from each other. I will be there for her in anyway I can, though, just like she was for me when I went through it.

Lacy panties are totally the bomb. Enough said.

I keep dozing off while writing this, which probably means I should try and get some sleep. I keep reading what I’ve written so far, to make sure it sounds at least semi-coherent, and it does. I just wish it sounded as funny as it did in my head earlier today. Oh well.

P.S. I made pulled pork over the weekend. It was fantastic!

P.P.S. I also made coleslaw from scratch. Look at me, all Susie Homemaker and shit!