Out of Exile (babysteps)

So I am finally moving out of my self imposed exile.  Not to say that I am venturing out and trying to meet new people.  No, I am just trying to get a better idea of my surroundings.  Its like an adventure.  I am testing out back roads.  The roads less traveled.  Because I am very much in a place of more than enough cars and travelings.  People are pretty much everywhere-not in a NYC or LA -Holy Crap- kind of way.  But more like geez, where did all of these people come from?  And where are they going?  And why are they always in my way?  So, one evening I head out to pick up my 10 year old from one of her new friends home and venture the back way.  I see a twinkling out of the corner of my eye, as it was dusk, and low and behold, less than 2 miles from my own back door this is what I find.  Of course, I did not have my camera with me, but I went back a couple of days later in the daytime and this is what we have!

I knew we were close to Pine Knob, but did not realize I could potentially ride my bike there!

Now, on a completely different topic, does anyone out there have Roku?  We do not have cable.  For reasons I will not go into (ie: Comcast are demons).  However, we watch Hulu and Netflix all the time.  Lately I have been a wee bit tired of Power Ranger and Strawberry Shortcake blasting in my home all day long.  So, today I was messing with the remote and found Pandora.  I have a Pandora account for my computer-but now I can stream music from my tv?????  COOL!  Seriously, they already have stations uploaded, from Jerry Garcia to The Chemical Brothers.  How stinking cool.  Its amazing what a little Jack Johnson and the like are doing for my kids attitudes right now.  Best Thing Ever!  Until something cooler comes along…..

Technology and a Pickle-or should I say a Pinkel….

I am taking part in a 52 week photo challenge.  Wherein, we are given a topic each Sunday and have a week to photograph something or someone that best displays this in our eyes.  The reason this is called a “challenge” is that you have to remember to actually do it.  And of course I almost-yeas almost forgot.  The topic was technology.  So, at the last minute this is what I came up with.  I am expecting my efforts to become a bit better in the future!

Sweet Nectar of God!

I have to admit that I have not made a New Years resolution in a few years.  It’s a part of growing older and wiser and knowing who you are and what your limits are.  In other words, I have never made a New Years Resolution I have been able to keep.    What I have discovered are new and amazing, well to me anyways, things about myself.  So instead of making New Year’s Resolutions, I am making New Year’s Revelations!

Just after the winter solstice I recognized that I had an addiction.  I believe every one of us has an addiction to something.  Things beyond the talked of drug/alcohol/food addictions.  Not all addictions are necessarily vices either.  I have chosen to view this addiction, as I am sure I have more than one, as a gift from God.  And that addiction is Honey Goat Cheese.  Goat cheese in general, but Honey Goat Cheese is like the empirical treasure of goat cheeses.  The tartness with the tinge of sweetness…..

See how the rays of light shine down upon it, like God himself is shining down blessing it with its goodness…

Here is a closer look!  I can only find it at Aldi, yes, Aldi!  And sometimes when I go there, they are out!  Its like blasphemy when that happens.  I love Honey Goat Cheese.

What crazy revelation do you have to share?

A New Year!

A New Year!!!!

I say this with happiness and joy!  I am so glad that 2011 has come to an end.  Although it was not completely miserable and everyone is healthy, it was still a very tough year for me.  I have always said that change is dependable and we should look forward to it, but I really had to eat those words this year.  Change is difficult no matter how hard you try to make it easy.  No matter how much you try to be positive, sometimes it s just difficult.

Eric was officially employed (yeah!  No more self employment!!!!) with a great company.  They are out of Stuttgart, Germany.  After all but one set of our friends has gone back to Germany, I believe Germany may be coming for us next!  The only unfortunate thing about this job was it was a 2 hour commute, one way.  Eric began to stay with co-workers a couple of nights during the week to save on gas and to save himself the drive.

I began blogging with earnest in 2011.  Although I started in 2010, the extra downtime without Eric around I filled with thoughts and images of life and my surroundings.  I now go back and review them and think I might have been a wee bit depressed during all of this!  In any case, it (blogging) has been a nice release for me.  After many months of Eric’s commute, we began to easily recognize that this lifestyle was not going to be conducive to a healthy family life.  We were able to find a house rental near his work and put our own house on the market.  We decided to give it a year and hope that the house will sell.

We made the move gradually starting in mid-July. The kids were glad to have the summer to say good-bye to their friends and start to make new ones as well.  India started a new school and this time in a public school.  I can say now, after 4 months of this system, how much we miss St. Joseph’s Academy.  And we also recognize there are serious issues that public school systems face and the way they approach teaching.  However, India is striving to do well and we have to work quite a bit with her, but she is really growing up and becoming a complete “tween”!  She has begun taking gymnastics and will be joining the school wide choir.

Tristan began living with his dad last school year and now started his first year of high school.  He made the JV Basketball team and is mid-season right now.  He does very well with his grades and is now taller than his mom.  He is undecided whether he will play baseball this year, but I feel confident whatever his choice, his dad will not allow him to be idle.  That seems to be what the weekends with mom are for!  It has been nice to have him for just fun time this past year or so, but I miss having him home more.  But this arrangement allows us to do so much more with him!

Rowen and LuLu miss going to Montessori, as do I!  But we are making it work.  Although the weather is getting cold and snowy right now, we have plans for exploring our new home area!  They each are growing quickly and are so much individuals.  I wondered if they would be similar in regards to likes and such because of their closeness in age, but they have proven me wrong!  Rowen loves all kinds of mind puzzles, robots, cars and karate while LuLu likes to wear ballerina tutu’s everywhere, including the grocery store.  They certainly make me smile each and every day!

I have been fortunate this year in regards to my work.  I have had the pleasure of taking more portrait sessions this year and have had a great year selling my artwork.  I look forward to continuing in both my photography and my oil pastels this upcoming year.  I am still the LCVA president, but am finding my move is making things a bit more difficult.  I am working through it and have great people helping me along the way!
Our move has taken us to Lake Orion, MI.  Orion Township to be exact.  We are in a nice subdivision with lots of kids.  And, of course, two of our neighbors are from Germany-I really do think Germany is after us!  Its been an adjustment and it has had its ups and downs.  One thing I have realized this year is that life is rarely about geography, but about relationships.  And I want to thank each and every one of you for your friendships, your kindness and your thoughtfulness in that past years and in the future ones!  We have lots of plans for this upcoming year and I hope that you will be a part of them in some way.  We hope you all have an amazing year filled with adventure, fun, blessings and welcomed change!


The Pinkel’s