Displaced Stay At Home Californian in rural N. Carolina

The Many Faces of Joy

The Many Faces of Joy

Tuesday, December 16, 2014


I haven't worn heels for more than 5 years because something terrible was wrong with my right foot and it didn't allow me to.  But lately I've noticed that my foot is fine and I'm not sure if that is because I'm getting older and I don't notice it because of all the other stuff that is broken down or in disrepair or if it has healed but God forbid I go to a doctor and figure out what is wrong. 

Lets get it straight - I have insurance but this state is so messed up that the insurance costs a fortune and quite honestly I can't afford another co-pay and some lame explanation and then a bill for $250 or $500 dollars that isn't covered by the lame insurance I have.  I have never had such problems with an insurance company until I moved to N. Carolina.  And that is the Gods Truth.

Anyway - back to the heels, I recently discovered that not only can I wear heels, I can wear cute heels and they don't have to look like Keens or clogs which I was so sick of wearing after having owned every pair that Lands End has come out with in the last 10 years.  So I have bought some heels and I wear them to work and every time I do, I feel like I'm hitting a runway, and not the airport kind.  It is fun to be a girl sometimes.

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Secret Snowflake

So this year at my new job I am participating in what we call a Secret Snowflake.  It is basically the Secret Santa idea, you leave little things for the person you whose name you picked out of a hat and at the end of 3 weeks you reveal yourself and everyone says "Wow, I had no idea who was giving me presents"!!!  It is a way to break up the monotony and make people feel good and spread some holiday cheer.

Well my Secret Snowflake is a now show.  I mean that since I am only a part time-er, my Secret Snowflake only has to worry about me Monday through Wednesday.  But we are on Wednesday and my Secret Snowflake hasn't left me anything.

I did write on my detailed list of things I like to get as presents as being diamonds but I guess I am not really expecting someone to buy me diamonds for a present at work.  I have to say that whenever I fill out paperwork I try to really ham it up.  So this could also be all my own fault.  For example under favorite food items I listed 20 cheese food items but then under the things I'm allergic to question I put cheese.  See?  I actually made buying a gift for me really fun to myself but really irritating and annoying to my Secret Snowflake. 

I am hoping my Secret Snowflake shows up before the end of business today.  Or else I am going to feel like maybe I need to start learning how to play by the rules of the game.

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Bok Bok Bok

I listen to XM radio in my car to and from work and I almost exclusively listen to a Spanish language morning program called "Tu Manana live" out of Miami.  I love it!  They talk about music, food, politics, social networking, what is going on in the world, gossip, sports and so much more.  They have a great team of 3 radio personalities, a lady and two men and they rif off each other, crack jokes and keep the show going through discussions, arguments, games, jokes and more.

I have wanted to call this show for some time now to participate in a game they play on Thursdays and Fridays.  They play a song and then they stop the song and the caller has to complete the song.  The songs are all in Spanish but since I listen to Spanish language radio almost exclusively I know many of the songs they put on this program and I love Spanish popular music but for some reason I've been too chicken to call in.

Well Tuesday morning I called in.  They were talking about racism and stereotyping and I called in to comment about being bi-cultural and what that means to racism and stereotyping and to me.  The screener asked me some questions (in Spanish) and then placed me on hold until the song was over and the program continued.  I sat there on hold for 2 or 3 minutes with my heart in my mouth and on the verge of a nervous breakdown and then I hung up!


Saturday, November 29, 2014


So when we moved to Silicon Valley from Davis I swore I would never step foot in a Walmart again.  Mostly because I spent so much time driving to Dixon from Davis to save money and pinch pennies but also because I got so tired of the lack of customer service and the sloppy attitude and the rude employees.  But there are no Walmart's in Silicon Valley - so it wasn't really a problem and I got used to shopping at Target.  It turns out it really doesn't matter which big box store you are giving your money to, they are all big box, Costco, Walmart, Target, pick your destroyer of the Mom-and-Pop store and get crazy with that credit card.

I remember my neighbor Joanna always telling me that in North Carolina the Walmart's were better, cleaner, the employees friendlier and the quality of the items being better.  I now believe her.  For some reason in California the Walmarts look like a bomb went off and then black Friday happened all at the same time.  

Walmart has started a program that allows their shoppers to save additional money while shopping at one of the cheapest places on earth.  You just go to and register.  And every time you shop there you enter a code on your receipt and if they can find a price out there in Consumerville that is lower than the one they have at Walmart, they credit you the difference.  And you watch your money grow.  And once it gets to the amount that you want to use or spend, you can print up a gift card or voucher and go into Walmart and buy something.  It is pretty cool.  

One day I was asking a lady who works there who talks to me every time I stop in to get peppermint patties or Ghiradelli Chocolate bars or Coke Zero, what is stopping me from entering every receipt I find in the parking lot or the abandoned shopping carts.  She said that she isn't supposed to say anything but she guessed that nothing was stopping me.  I looked down and there was a receipt for $150 laying by my foot.  So I picked it up and entered it that afternoon.  I got $2.75 back from that receipt.  

Flash forward to today - the family stops at Walmart to get rat bedding and return some useless crap and I find 5 receipts just laying around.  The last one I had to ask Gabe to slam on his breaks so I could jump out of the car and salvage a stray receipt flying through the parking lot but if other people refuse to save their receipts to enter them to get free money back, why shouldn't I?  And while I was chasing down the stray receipt my child groaned to my husband in the car, "My mother is a hobo!".  And we all had a good laugh, actually they all laughed at me.  She has made me promise to not chase stray receipts while she is with me.  I told her I will try my best but I'm not promising anything.

Sunday, November 23, 2014

Big Apple

I went to New York City for my birthday, actually it was the day after my birthday.  The last time I was in New York to visit a friend was when I was 26 years old, I had gotten an insurance settlement check for an accident I was in and instead of fixing my car or my back, I bought a plane ticket and headed to the East Coast to celebrate Thanksgiving.  I remember stepping out of the terminal and it was so cold I opened my suitcase and put all the clothes I had brought on.  It was freezing.

It was just as cold last weekend but I packed well and brought many layers.  For those of you familiar with New York you know that even though it is freezing cold outside you will go inside and be sweating in 2 minutes because the heal is cranked up so high.  The friend I stayed with has these old radiator heaters in her apartment so the temperature was not controlled, it was HOT.  So you alternated between bundled up like a snowman and naked.  And it wasn't even that cold - I have heard it can get colder.

We walked around the city and I got a massive blister.  I made a rookie mistake of bringing cute shoes not comfortable shoes.  When will I learn?  And then instead of switching to comfy shoes I continued to wear the cute shoes.  We went shopping.  We went out to eat.  We talked and talked.  We went shopping some more.  We went for walks in Central Park and around the Reservoir.  We had brunch.  We drank really good coffee and ate really good croissant.  We stopped in a place I had been in 20 years ago for a beer.  We met friends.  We met new people.  We slept.  We bought shoes. (plural)

When I was 26 I thought that living in New York City would be quite possibly the coolest thing anyone could ever do and don't get me wrong, it is pretty cool.   I love the ethnic diversity.  I love the food.  I love the shoes.  I love the vitality of it all.  But at 46 I can say that while it was fun and exhilarating and totally different from my life in North Carolina, I wouldn't change my life for anything.  Thank you Julie and New York City for a wonderful weekend, can't wait to come back again soon.

Sunday, November 9, 2014

Sell Out

I have sold out - I have added ads to my blog in the hopes that I can write a bunch of stuff that only makes sense to me and I can get paid for it.  So click away - click on my ads and I promise that I'll dedicate my first hard copy to you.  If I ever get the book published.

And since we are on the topic of the book I'm writing, I will be selling everyone out in my book, friends and family, if we have something juicy and good and worth writing about it will be going into a chapter somewhere.

So please for the love of God start reading my blog every week and click on the ads.  Especially the one for the vacuum and the shoes.  They are really good shoes.  Happy Shopping.


I hate a love/hate relationship with the selfie.  I think that taking a picture of yourself is wonderful - something to remember yourself by - something to mark the passage of time.  But for those of you that are on social media know that there is an occasional selfie and then there is the selfie addict that posts selfies all the time.

They also have a signature thing, whether a peace sign sideways, or the tongue stuck out, or a wink, or wearing a bikini in every picture or showing off those newly purchased boobs.

The only thing worse than the selfie is the picture of every meal you have eaten, home cooked or otherwise.  I don't care about what you had for breakfast, lunch, dinner and stoner meal.

So in response to the selfie I have started taking a picture when I wake up in the morning, the first look, the head shot.  And then post it.  Here is the latest: