I’ve been known to go into Major Action Mode and plan, plan, plan and do, do, do and obsess, obsess, obsess my time away. Which is fine sometimes. My mind likes to be busy, as do my hands. Once I get something in my head and work on it for a few days/months, and get all set on How It’s Going To Be, I can have a really hard time recalculating and changing plans if the need arises.

We planned to travel the USA and meet lots of people and write a book and live out of our car with practically nothing to our name. We sold almost all our stuff. We gave notice on our home. We set up interviews and found sponsors and had a blast figuring out where we might go and the best way to get there. And then, our plans changed. And miracle or miracles, it was no big thing.

There have been a few times in my life when this has happened – I’ve ended up somewhere or with someone and I just know that is where I’m supposed to be. I get that feeling in my gut that says – ya, man. Right here. We got to Virginia and that is how I feel.

Of course, I’m a little disappointed that we won’t be driving across the country and meeting all of you, taking photos and creating a book, but it feels like that might still be coming. Sometime later. And even if it never does, I’m ok with that, too.

I find myself going inward a little. I’m not blogging as much or taking as many photos. I’m hardly on Twitter or Facebook. I’m not joining or participating in networking events. I feel quiet inside and I don’t really want to share my entire life with everyone. I don’t want to document every little thing that we do or where we go or what we looked like. These are all new feelings for me and it’s taken me a few weeks to reconcile that with the person I’ve been for the past 8 years. I’ve been a little confused by the whole thing.

I felt a little guilty that I feel this new way. After all, for the past 8 years I’ve talked about pretty much everything and shared so much with all of you. And I’ve loved it and sometimes, it’s the only thing that kept me going through major depressions and hard times. Sharing here and other places on the web has been such an important thing for my life.

No, I’m not making some grand announcement that I won’t be blogging ever again and I’m moving into a cave where I’ll become a recluse and live off squirrels and insects. (Good protein.) I’m just saying that my habits and feelings are changing and I don’t know what that means yet.

Thank you, friends, for coming here and caring what I say. Thank you for your emails and comments and love and support over the years. I feel like I know so many of you and I have no idea what I would have done without you during the hard times. Thank you, thank you, thank you. And if I suddenly find something I want to write about here in a consistent fashion, you’ll be the first to know.

p.s. You can still email me if you want to. I’m not a hermit, for land’s sake.

p.p.s. Happy New Year! I wish you all the best for your new year.

Sick Dogs

Internet – we are sick. Sick, sick doggies. Joe is horking up things from his chest that no one, NO ONE should hear or see. Poor puppy, it’s not his fault. But, still! Stop horking! I seem to be a couple of days behind him, so I guess I better be nice so when I have disgusting matter oozing out my orifices he’ll be nice to me. Wow, that got gross fast. I’ll see you in a minute when you come back from honoring the porcelain king.

There I go. Talking about puke. Still gross. Like being twelve years old and just learning what 69 means. I can’t stop talking about it. I better go to bed, now, and hope that tomorrow is mucus-free.



Ohmygodyouguys! Our house is a DISASTER area. We’ve gutted every room and strewn the entrails around all the floors. It’s become an obstacle course. We’ve learned new dance steps to get from room to room.

Things I’ve Learned About Stuff

1. When I can’t find something, I go out and buy another one. This results in about 20 tubes of white acrylic paint, triple versions of every watercolor pencil and five staplers.

2. If you have boxes in the garage that you have moved four times and never opened, you probably don’t need that stuff.

3. 34 EXTRA pairs of shoes is too many. If ALL your shoes but one pair hurt your feet after 5 minutes, you might want to just have one pair of shoes.

4. If the kids say they don’t want anything saved from their room, they don’t want anything from their room. Unless they do. Then, save that stuff. Or don’t and feel like a heel.

Internet! Only SIX DAYS until we shove off!

Take care, my friends. When the new Reboot site is ready, I hope you’ll come along with us as we travel.


Eco-Friendly Driving

I’m collecting ideas on how to be eco-conscious while driving around the country. Our van is not a small, fuel efficient vehicle and if we had the means to do it, we’d probably trade it in. Although, the van affords us space to sleep if we want/need to for a few nights here and there.

Besides trying to conserve gas by not speeding and not running the AC (easy since it’s winter right now), getting out to eat instead of idling at the drive-thru, recycling all our trash and using our own containers for water and coffee when we stop – what are we missing?

Other things we’re trying to do – not buy any consumer plastic crap goods, only buy things for give-aways that are handmade by local vendors, take fast showers and wear everything twice to save on laundry washing impact.

Please leave your ideas in the comments. We’d like to do everything we can to offset our impact on the environment.

Cross-posted at Reboot.

Stimulating Conversation and Some Photos

Joe – I’m turning it off.

Leah – I guess we’ll never know what a Pelican Brief is now.

Joe – I guess not.

Leah – It could be a whole bunch of pelicans, like a whole passel of them.

Joe – And they are wearing briefs.

Leah – And then they fly into the Senate building and tell all the senators that if they don’t dance RIGHT NOW they are going to take off their briefs!! So, the senators all start doing this jig…….

Joe – …..

Leah – It stopped being funny about 30 seconds ago, huh?

And here are some pretty photos from our drive leaving Santa Cruz going to Moorpark.


Plus a sunset photo at Reboot.

Candle, Capitola


Lovely dinner at Bluewater last night. It’s right on the boardwalk with benches where we sat and listened to the waves. I know, it’s getting sappy, but seriously, it was lovely.

This image on the street sign may be as far into the spirit of Halloween I get.


Reboot Tour 09/10

So, what’s new?

Over here? Lots. This is how it breaks down.

Step 1. We are selling or giving away almost everything we own.

Step 2. We are getting a tiny storage unit to store our photos and other few irreplaceable items.

Step 3. We are loading up our van with what we need to live and work and-

Step 4. We are going on the hugest, most awesome-est road trip ever.

Step 5. We want to meet up with you!

You can read all about our adventure at the Reboot website. You can also submit to be considered for the book Prized Possessions.

Something about pairing down our possessions made us wonder what other people find precious. And so, of course, that meant I needed to interview tons of people about it and make a book.

Here are some ways to be involved in our Reboot Tour:

-Check out the map and let us know if you want to meet up with us when we pass through your town.
-Submit to be in the book.
-Sponsor some of our trek and get an awesome Thank You package.
-Spread the word!

Dates we know so far (that may be changed due to weather conditions or liking someone’s cherry pie so much we stay an extra day) –

November 12-16, 2009 – Santa Cruz, CA
November 16-19, 2009 – Moorpark, CA
November 20, 2009 – Prescott, AZ
November 21, 2009 – Albuquerque, NM, Santa Fe, NM
November 22, 2009 – Dallas, TX
November 23, 2009 – Memphis, TN
November 25-29, 2009 – Roanoke, VA
November 30, 2009 – December 19, 2009 – TBA
December 20-27, 2009 – Kanab, UT

We’re hitting some November cities a little quick this first time, but we’ll be back to spend more time later. We’ll be driving back-and-forth across the US a few times and then shooting up to Canada in the spring. We hope to see everyone if we can.

See you soon!

Starting Over

Here’s the thing – life doesn’t give you the opportunity to really start over very often. I’ve been married and divorced and remarried and lived a ton of different places. I’ve had all kinds of jobs. I’ve been mentally ill, fake-cured, mentally ill again (and will be for the rest of my life). I’ve lived near my kids and far away from my kids. I’ve been in mental hospitals and released. I’ve been to individual therapy and family therapy and couple’s therapy. I’ve been sexually abused and in loving relationships. I’ve been happy, sad, depressed, excited and everything in between.

I’m sure many of you have been through some of those things, as well. And you probably know what I mean when I say that each time there was a positive change, I looked at it as a new beginning. A chance to get things right, do better. Be better.

These past few years have been a roller coaster for me and those close to me. I’m sometimes a bit (read: a lot) unstable when it comes to everyday life. It’s never been my strong suit. Being mentally ill has its challenges and while I’m really good at some things, maneuvering through life always capable of facing the day is not one of them. Working a straight 9-5 job is sometimes impossible while telecommuting and working my own hours works great. I have to create a life that works for me. I craft what I need for myself on the terms that make sense in all my weirdness.

If you’ve read my blog for very long, you know that the highs and lows of being with or not with my children is a regular topic around here. As a mother, I’d like to think that I’m the best thing for them. That they need me to be nearby and to take care of them. I’ve learned the past few years that they really don’t need me to take care of them in the way I thought. They get that from who they call their ‘Parents’, my ex and his wife. They don’t think of me like That Kind of Mom. I’m a friend and someone they want to hang out with sometimes. And when my mental illness makes an appearance in any variety of ways, it makes them feel like they did when they were little kids – scared, sad and worried for my well-being instead of experiencing their lives being taken care of by an adult and worried about regular things like school and friends. Their grades slip, they get depressed, they don’t sleep well, they find reasons not to visit my home and then feel guilty. As the person that wishes they were the mom that was able to take care of them, I feel horrible. I live with the guilt and shame every day.

Recent circumstances have brought these things to light with more force than ever before and I guess I’m finally listening. Yes, I want to be near them and just watch, if that is all I can do. But at some point, I really have toput their needs ahead of mine and give them their space. And now is that time.

As if that wasn’t enough, some of you know that Joe and I have been having some issues. Much of it too private to mention here, but let’s just say that being mentally ill is no picnic for your spouse. We considered a divorce, but that sounded too final and decided to try and do what we needed to do as Separated, which so far has worked really well. Part of the reason we are succeeding, I think, is because we do actually love and like each other. With that as a foundation, we’re pretty sure we can work the rest out.

As confusing as this is to others, it makes a lot of sense to us. We’ve come up with some solutions to help change our lives in a very real and substantial way. More on that very soon.

Here’s to Starting Over.