Happy New Year!

When I wasn’t working and doing fun stuff, I spent a good part of 2015 going back and forth about grad school.  I even applied to a couple.  But ultimately decided that I just don’t feel right adding to my already enormously high student loan mountain of debt.  …that is already growing since I am helping Jessi pay for college…. and interest of course.  I would love to get my Master’s.  I LOVE school and I would also love to be more marketable once we starting planning our move from Maine, and I have the time for it with the job I have now.  So if I could just win the lottery……    I have few regrets in life as everything I have lived through has made me the bucket of awesomesauce that I am today,  but I definitely regret spending all that money and time going to Husson University to get my teaching credentials.  I could have my graduate degree, and instead I have nothing since I didn’t finish the program by doing student teaching.  (THAT I do not regret, as I now know that teaching is NOT my calling!)

I have also spent a good part of the year eliminating things, and people, from my life–and my Facebook that cause me drama and discord.  I am instituting Flylady’s general philosophy of ‘If you look at it and it doesn’t make you smile, you don’t need it in your life.’  Perhaps in 2016 I can institute the actual housecleaning part of the Flyolady philosophy  LOL…. WHO ARE WE KIDDING!!??

So now…. I present to you (and future me)…..

My favorite moments in 2015!!!
BTW- You KNOW you are living your best life when you give up on narrowing down the moments to one per month!  🙂

February- We built an awesome new kitchen isalnd!
March- family trip to Mexico!
Lonnie gets some new wheels!  The first vehicle he has ever owned that he doesn’t have to worry, “Will I make it there?”

We got a pasta maker for Christmas and made a LOT of ramen in 2015.  YUMMMMMM
Ed Sheeran concert… that we enjoyed for FREE on a hill outside the venue!

A very chilly Train concert

LOTS of summer swimming

The Popham Beach camping trip that turned into a Portland, Maine hotel weekend 😉

I Kayaked for the first time!!  AND LOVED IT!  I also crocheted for the first time… that did not go quite as well 😉
LOTS OF ROAD TRIPS!!!  Aquaboggin…. Bar Harbor…. Boston…. Portland….

Jessi got her license AND bought herself a car!!

We never give up trying to get fit!  We also never really suceed… but we keep on trying!

Lonnie became a PAELLA MASTER!!

Mom came up and rented a cottage on the coast

ONE DIRECTION!!!!!

Family trip to Beantown

SPORTS!!  Hockey and football games…. LOVE LOVE LOVE

NEW KITTEN!!  Gandolf aka Will Feral

Food and Spirits festival
Turkey Day!! …followed by the BEST BLACK FRIDAY EVER!!

A WONDERFUL CHRISTMAS SEASON (And no, most of those projects never happened lol)


Looking forward to LOTS MORE ADVENTURES in 2016!!

Life got in the way

Boston aquarium and an excuse to show of my man’s sexy arm 😉

It happens.  September arrived, and with it a flurry of activity and emotions.  We started our new fall work schedules (a new schedule that  I LOVE, but was a big change nonetheless), Jessi headed back to UMaine, Sean started 8th grade, Mom came for a surprise visit, we went on our long-awaited long weekend to Boston…….. etc etc etc…..

All were WONDERFUL excuses to not count points and stick to Weight Watchers.  I CAN proudly say that I have continued to exercise!  Yay me!

But now I am at a crossroads of sorts.  I am not feeling WW at all.  I have considered going back to low-carb for awhile.  But honestly…. as of this moment.  I am just feeling sticking to exercise and trying to be more mindful about what I stuff in my face and why I am doing said stuffing.

Speaking of WHY….  Nicole (bff) and I were talking about all my yearly autumn drama
Nicole: Why ARE you such a mess every year at this time?
Me:  I don’t fucking know…  because everything changes and it’s really busy and irritating.
Nicole: Hmmmm…. I think there is more to it then that.  When did your father leave?
Me: Holy shit.
Nicole:  :::::mic drop:::::

Now I have no idea if she is really onto something, but who knows?  Talking with my mom about it, she thinks that if there is a connection there, it would also include moving to Maine a few months beforehand and leaving behind my entire life in Connecticut.  And even if they ARE related, I need to learn to manage my behavior no matter WHAT the reason is for engaging in said behavior. …
Or maybe just work on being less crazy in general.  LOL NAH!!!!  What fun would THAT be!!??

And now some pics from the past couple weeks adventures…..
Sangria and a visit from Mom, which also included an unexpected lovely weekend at a cottage in Northport, Maine.

ONE DIRECTION!!!!  (Yes I am a 13 year old in a forty-something body.)
Jessi’s “new” car and back to school

Sassy new hair… that husband hated.  (“It’s so STRAIGHT?  Where’s my wild-haired girl??”) 

Nothin’ to it but to KEEP DOIN’ IT!!!
Lonnie grillin’ up some Paella during Mom’s visit.
Another gratuitous sexy husband pic.  LOOK AT THOSE CALVES!

Move Musings AKA– Where should we live!?

Big trips and little trips always get me all in a dither about our several-years-from-now move. Yesterday Lonnie and I took a day trip down to Portland to see ‘Jurassic World’ at the IMAX and do some grocery shopping at Trader Joes.  All day long there were many mentions of someday actually living in a city with both of those right nearby!

We want to live in a city where people are physically active and there is lots to do nearby.  A giant plus that I have noted, is that no matter where we go, finding a job should not be an issue for me. There is no shortage of people requiring mental health services in this country!!  
We keep going back to focusing on cities on the Gulf coast because I think we feel like it will be like living on vacation.  So that is where I started my googling adventure on this rainy morning.
Florida

We think about Florida a lot.  Over the winter, I worked with a personal trainer who had just moved up here from there and he often talked about how much more active people are and how much more there is to do,  He also claims that after about 2 years, you get used to the heat (he is from Massachusetts originally).  Also I like the idea of living somewhere that people will want to come visit us and use us to save on hotel costs 😉
However….
I have been to Tampa and Orlando. While I can see myself enjoying life there, I’m not sure I can resign myself to never having my hair look good again.  Florida=frizz.  Also…. I’m not sure I believe my trainer about the heat thing.  The closest to summer we have been there is May, and “hot” is an understatement, so I can’t even imagine what it’s like in August.  How active outdoors can you really be in the summertime when just walking from your house to your car is atrociously heat-oppressive??
Texas 

I have focused on Austin in the past, but I think I am over that.  Today I researched Houston and Galveston and was ALL ABOUT IT for about an hour.  Great economy, near the ocean, lots of gorgeous/cheap apartments.
However….
Looking on message boards  there are an overwhelming amount of comments from people like this…
Do yourself a favor while you’re ahead. Don’t move to Houston.


It’s a hell hole.”


Lots of comments about how the only thing to do is go out to dinner. That the heat is so oppressive that in the summer all you can do is stay indoors.  That it’s Jesusland.  Traffic. Rednecks. High crime.
Oregon

I am pretty excited about Portland, Oregon!  If I can get past the rain issue, it sounds like EXACTLY where I want to live!
However…
Not sure I can get past the rain issue.  As we all know, I am a little prone to the Winter Blues.  I’m not sure if that’s the 567 feet of snow and snot-freezing temperatures keeping me indoors that causes it, or the actual lack of sunshine.  If it’s the former, then we should be fine!   
I have no idea where we will end up…. or maybe we will take some time in each one!  But I have plenty of time, and I am having a lot of fun figuring it out!!!