Getting down and dirty....

A year ago my fondest wish was to be employed.  Okay, been there and done that.  It was a stepping stone to opening doors to bigger and better things.  But that never happened.  It didn't happen because I love to dig down and sink in deep, I got SO involved in learning my current job that it took all the wind out my sail and I lost sight of my original goal.  And this isn't what makes my heart sing.

Funny thing is, at this point I don't  know what my dream job is.  I do know that I love to write, and so I write when I can, when I am inspired, but apart from that I feel like I am in a vortex. One day leads to the next, the routine is driving me crazy.   I realize that the 4th of July only comes once a year, but I want more, much more.

The job market is dicey at best, and it challenges us to keep up with the voracious change in technology.  I think of all the wonderful ideas I had to start my own business: (the drive-in deli concept; the talent and casting agency start up; the personal male shopping assistant), the list goes on.

When I get down and dirty, and my life slows to a halt, I can take the time to get frustrated enough with myself to make a change.  I am coming out of that vortex and looking forward to scaling that next opportunity, wherever and whatever it may be.

I have made all the classic baby-boomer mistakes, including not socking away savings, living large, and not planning for retirement.   So I don't have a great hand to play.  However, I do still have high expectations, (shame on me at 60).  Retirement is not an option,  I want to do something I love, to ease into a comfortable lifestyle, but not fade into the sunset,

I look around me and see enormous talent, and this talent has been compromised because of the current market.  People just settle for less. Expect less.  We all  "sell out" on different levels.  I can't continue to settle for less.

I ponder what marginal options I have...but I still have those dreams that are keeping me awake at night...

A Very Memorable Sunday

Every day on my way to work I pass fields of livestock.  First, there are the horse farms on either side of a beautiful country road that I navigate with gusto!  Then, there are the herds of cows, in every color, shape and variety.   Dairy cows, baby wonder the cow is sacred in India!

I cherish the drive. It is how I welcome a new day into my life.  About ten minutes into the drive, I pass my favorite site of all:  A tiny, little farm that one would miss if you blink...It is here  I fell in love with the most unusual animal; a Llama.  His antics are etched in my mind.  Majestic, wise, he holds court daily with sheep, and is most protective of the smallest of the flock: the new-borns.

I swore I would stop and introduce myself to the owners, get to be up close and personal- but never did.  It is a soothing sight; observing my llama kneel down with his charges, gently looking after them. Little ones picking away at the fur on his belly, him arching his back, but never being annoyed.

Last Sunday, I pulled off the highway and ambled down a little dirt road leading to a large, fenced in pasture.   I walked toward a  wooden gate and cottage home, where promptly greeted by an not so happy min-pin...Barking furiously, to no avail, as no one was home.  Should I just walk into the corral?   After all, I was finally HERE... I wasen't going to leave without saying hello.

In the distance, I caught sight of two ladies and a gentleman with a straw hat...carrying a pitch fork..After apologizing for interrupting their Sunday, I found them most welcoming .

"You aren't the only one who has stopped by to say hello."  I immediately felt at ease as I got introduced to the whole family and all the pets.

I was told that my beloved Llama is named "Checkers."  Not surprising, with his coal black body and beautiful white blaze. "Checkers" was bought three years ago to protect the sheep from kyotes.  Thinking he was quite expensive, I was told he was two-hundred and fifty dollars (because he wasen't trained to carry packs, or do any formal work).  Then there is baby Pearl, a little dollop of a sheep, just weeks old...And "Ashley".  Ashley( a beautiful apricot) came right up to me, with her strong and intimidating horns!  I was told that Ashley was the only one of the sheep that was bottle fed.

I admired how well cared for they are...That they are brought in for inclement weather, and if it gets too hot, they are back in the barns, seeking the refuge in cooler air.  How I love to see my little friends on my way to work each day!

I hope you enjoy looking at these pictures as much as I do.  They are shorn regularly for weaving and knitting shows around the State, and the owners are proud of the the awards they have won.

Just one more reason to thank God I live in Colorado.

Little Loco

It has been two weeks since we moved "CoCo" back into the apartment.  All is well.  He has adapted surprisingly well.  The first couple of nights I cringed, when I heard the familiar screeches at his 8PM social hour.  I prayed they would stop.  I had to get out the trusted spray bottle and wet him down to get him settled in.  He hates the is supposedly great to quite them down, and get them to "preen" themselves to distract.

I tipped toed around for the first week.  Once lights are out, the spoiled little brat does not take to kitchen roamers and munching.  If any lights are put on, CoCo lets us know its not alright, and wants you back in your room.

Apart from that, I have learned to ignore his requests.  He seems to revel in sitting on my shoulder, and sharing evening meals with me at the dinner table.  The best was when I had a Margarita for dinner, and he got right in my face to let me know HE wanted a sip.  I had to explain that was a no-no.  So far I have found he loves banana ice-cream and meats, surprising to me, any kind of meat.  He is supposed to love veggies but can't get him to eat them.   Oh and yes, Chinese food, seems to appeal to his Indonesian palette.

So, for now, I have a new feathered addition to the family, I wanted a Pomeranian pup, but ended up with another species.

I guess I will "fly" with the punches....such is life...

My Own Animal Story!

Yesterday, my estranged husband had to give up the parrot (Cockotoo) that has been in the family 18 years. I took him back to African Grey pet shop where I purchased him, 18 years ago in a blizzard! The owner, agreed to take him back and find a good home for him.

After carefully loading his cage in the car, and all his toys, I got to the Pet Shop and surrendered him.

Sorrowfully, I said my goodbyes. It was later I realized I had forgotten a part of the cage, and journeyed back to the Pet Shop...

I asked where "Coco" was, and was told he was in the playpen ( a large, Plexiglas enclosed cubicle with sand and perches) Slowly, I made my way over and caught sight of him. It was apparent he had settled in with the other birds and was content in his new environment. Slowly, I tearfully called his name, and he didn't at first recognize me. Then he slowly turned his head all the way around, and starred directly into my eyes. His black eyes widened with curiosity. Of course, I was wreck and cried uncontrollably.

Finally, the owner, Karen, asked why I wasn't going to "try" him out at my humble dwelling. She suggested we try to take him back to my Boulder apartment; and see if he would settle in with me. I had given this careful consideration before, but my roommate and son, was against this, and made it painfully clear he didn't want "Coco" to come home with us. However, I had forewarned my neighbor that we may have an unusual guest, and asked permission to try him out at the apartment some weeks before, cautioning him that he would be a screamer. He looked at me and asked "do you want to bring him home?," and I told him I did. "Well, he continued, 'we certainly can give it a try, and if it doesn't work, it doesn't work."

So, after bringing up the disassembled cage, and making numerous trips to the car, I got him set up again, in my humble apartment, in the living room. Around 10 PM he started to scream, and I panicked. Actually, he was telling me he was tired and wanted "lights out." I quickly got my water for the night out of the kitchen, and brought it to my bed room.

I didn't hear a peep out of him until I woke him this morning. My son and I are trading him off (from room to room) and letting him perch on our shoulders, giving him extra attention to better acclimate him to his new home.

I will continue to monitor him daily. Taking a day at a time, hoping I won't have to give him up ever again. It is a prayer I hold deep in my heart.

Denise Fisher

Sugar and Spice and Other Things Not So Nice

I am at it again, stalking the isles of King Soopers with my raincoat and sunglasses, tip-toeing round corners and eying the Ice Cream, Cinnamon Rolls and other decadent delicacies.  Just this week, I had just finished a bowl of pasta and absolutely had to go out to Dairy Queen to have a Blizzard fix.

Shouldn’t I have grown out of this? What makes me so crazy for sugar, sugar and MORE sugar? Maybe because I didn’t have enough sugar (love) in my life, but whatever it is, it has wreaked havoc on my waistline and tummy. As long as I can remember, I have always had a love affair with food, and especially sugar.

The people I love to hate are those who sigh “Oh, I forgot to eat today.” Come on now, how can one FORGET TO EAT? It is like forgetting to breathe. I am sure you get the drift. It is Friday afternoon, and I haven’t had my yogurt for the day, and am already dreaming of Pizza for dinner.

When I was on the “Suzanne Sommers” diet, I actually lost my gut and got rid of my sugar cravings. The first two weeks was going through withdrawal. It was every bit as hard as kicking any other addiction. The one great trick I devised was my baked apple dessert, topped with “Butter Buds” and Stevia or “Sweet and Lo.”

I am digging hard and fast to fill up the hole inside of me, and am pondering ideas that don’t include the sweeter things in life.

By the way, I only have 6 more hours before I dip into that Pizza.

Now What?

The dust (oil) hasn't quite settled in the Gulf, and wonder what can we expect after the latest assault to the environment. During this crisis, I buried my head, I couldn't watch the news and just honestly couldn't deal with it at all.

Beautiful creatures laden with oil, damaged and drained, lifeless carcasses tossed about on the beaches. What a horrific sight. I wish I could shrug it off and forget about it all together. But it hangs over my head and remains in my thoughts.

Animals have a special place in in my heart. Maybe because they are so helpless and have no voice. We have to be their voice.

So in the days to come, I w ill watch what plays out. I appreciate the individuals who gave their time and money to help clean up the mess. I am haunted by the aftermath.

Unlike many, I cannot affix blame, but accept this is a fact of life that is part and parcel to the benefits of modern technology.

It doesn't mean I am happy about it, however. So what is the answer? I don't have an answer, or a solution. I need this opportunity to express my feelings and share them.

So in the days to come, I will keep watch and observe this evolution.  I pray that nature can once again restore a balance, for the the smallest and largest creatures; the snails to whales. My hope is that the sea will once again become their refuge and playground.
I Shudder...

Newsweek headline shouts: "What Will be Killed" and I shudder.  I shudder about all of God's beautiful and helpless creatures.  Ruined.  Destroyed. With the wonders of technology, comes sadness and loss of life. Because of the comfort we enjoy;  we trade the well-being of wildlife.  I want to bury my head.  I cannot bear to look at the glaring headlines, or the coverage on the networks at night. 

I buy Dawn dishwashing liquid because I fell in love with the campaign, and the contribution that was devised to quell wildlife disasters' like this one.  It is said that the Exxon oil spill dwarfs this.  I can't even imagine.

At this point, all the money in the world cannot undo what has happened.  To live is to die, but I don't want to think about this kind of death. 

I don't want to deal with how these helpless creatures now measure out the balance of their short lives. Suffering so softly;  unable to complain, accepting their fate.  We watch them daily fading from sight until their water-logged bodies attest to yet another catastrophy induced by humanity.
I shudder.  I want to hide.  I don't want to look.


It's hard to believe that another year has flown by and am looking at my birthday coming up next week.  What have I learned in the last year?  Let's see...that life goes on no matter how much you want to stop the world and get off.  Somehow we survive the toughest challenges.  Nothing is ever so bad you can't figure out a way to get past the drama.

Last year at this time I was concerned about being unemployed.  I am happy to report that I scaled that mountain and found a decent job for the moment.  Moreover, the people appreciate me and are, indeed, a pleasure to work with.

I still spend twice as much as I make (some things never change).  I have made some new friends, and continue to nuture my old friends.  So what's missing?

 I still want to buy my little house and add another Great Pyrenees to the family.

One day at a time.  I suppose I will tackle this for the coming year. 

In the meantime, I did finally purchase a new laptop, and have no excuses for neglecting my blog.

Until next time.


While working out this evening, I began thinking about all the special "things" I cherished as a teenager. For example, there was my diary, a potpourri of hopes and dreams. Insights and personal analogies.  How I saw the world 45 years ago.

I reflect on my cherished Beatles’ albums, the poster of Ringo” I won at a dance contest on Miami Beach; and another poster of one of my then favorite actors, David Hemmings. I wish I had also kept my Junior High School yearbooks. They too, are gone.

My father, not one for showing affection or sharing feelings, wrote me a postcard on a business trip from Japan. It read, “miss you and wish you were here.” I think about that postcard all the time. I could just kick myself for not tucking it away. A few odd and ends survived, mostly jewelry passed down from mother to daughter.  Funny that I cherished the scrapbooks, photos, diary and music over the jewelry.

After we sold the house and my parents' split up, I shared a little apartment with my mother .. We moved a couple of times, and I suspect either they were lost in the move, or more likely, thrown out.

I would have enjoyed reading my diary, and the albums would be worth something today. More importantly, they were my treasures at the time. I wish I had paid more attention, and had been more responsible.

I made "baby books" for my children.  Sadly, they did the same thing; left them with their father for safekeeping.  I hope that in 45 years they have something to treasure, and that they didn't make the mistake I did.

When we're young, we tend to push aside anything that isn't important to us at that moment.  I suppose we all grow more sentimental with age. I certainly have.

For now, I just relish the memories.

Fear of Flying

My hands are quivering, my knuckles look white, as I grab the faded linen seat arms.  I hear the rumble of the engines, my heart is racing.  The runway looks like one continuous white line.  I am ready to take off; all from my living room couch.

No, I am not going on a trip, I don't have a trip planned. I am the classic "white knuckle" flyer. 

How ridiculous; here I am thinking about how afraid I am of flying and not going anywhere.  Wow, now that is also classic anxiety.

Let's see, what else can I worry about.  Oh, yes, of course, this week I will take my final test for my job training, I am already sweating thinking about it.  When I get to my computer, I imagine going blank , and forgeting everything I have learned.  It doesn't matter how many times I am told NOT to worry, I just have to have something filled up in the "worry" box in my head.

How I admire my friends who can live day to day, without worry and concern.  I am sure they worry if there is SOMETHING that warrants their attention.

Today I am going to focus on enjoying life, excluding the drama.  I'll see how it works out.

Lost Loves

I woke up thinking about all the "lost loves" I have had, true loves, innocent loves, and “first" loves. The four-legged loves of my life.

My family has always been in love with dogs. As long back as I can remember, there was a pet taking center stage in my life. So many loves; now gone, but not forgotten. Some of these loves are harder to get over than the rest; some passed gracefully, while a select few suffered hard and long.

All of them had unique personalities and proclivities. Some were "snippy" and did not like to be cuddled, but were amazing at expressing affection in the most intimate ways. Others followed from room to room, the Florence Nightingale’s of the canine world.

I always know how close I am going to be with someone when the talk circles around to pets. For instance, a recent date told me that when he buys his new home, he would want his pets to be "outside" dogs. That was a big- time red flag. I couldn't imagine not giving my pets the run of my house, including snuggling up on the bed.

The biggest joys of my life have been coming home to find my dog, Pepe, on my bed with his head on my pillow. What a show of love and devotion that is to me.

I might just be dog-crazy, but I am making no excuses and taking no prisoners.

On the Other Hand...

I used to say I had never met my soul mate. After much deliberation and thought, I realized  I have and I married him.  He totally understands me; helps me solve problems and is concerned when I am ill or upset, and is my best friend forever.

Unfortunately, my beloved has serious mental health issues which caused our breakup and separation. I am there for him, and he for me. I suppose we only get parts of a person, there always seems to be that one piece of the puzzle that does not fit. This is certainly the case for us.

While I am no "walk in the park," either, I have to have a peaceful place to call home. Therefore, it was 5 years ago that I elected to move out and call Boulder my home.

I certainly do miss having a “significant other” in my life. However, maybe I really do have someone, but without the baggage. There is something to be said about having a warm body to wake up with in the mornings, and to snuggle with in the evenings, to grow old gracefully, together.

There are still many benefits in being friends, and I can talk to him about everything, including dating. It is remarkable that he can answer me truthfully, without jealousy or subjectivity. How does he do it? I certainly cannot call myself mature on that level.

For now, that is not in the cards, but there is always tomorrow. I have many good things happening for me in my life right now for which I am grateful.

Another reason to count my blessings...

Managing Disappointment

I am feeling disappointed today. I have this problem: I am a dreamer and see people they way I want to see them, not they way they really are. I suppose this leads me to make poor choices for partners in life.

There is an art to successful relationships; just like everything else in life. One has to work at them. I suppose I don't work hard enough, or investigate deep enough. It is not that I don't enjoy my own company, but I find it so much more rewarding to share my hopes, dreams and aspirations with someone else. My friends fulfill much of my needs, but I am a hopeless romantic. I can find fascinating things in the most unlikely people, and disregard the most critical aspects of their character. Then, when things do not work out, I find my self-feeling let down and frustrated about my choices.

The more offbeat the person, the more interesting to me. While I am attracted to the unpredictable types, I appreciate grounded, stable people.

In short, people like me should not marry, because our judgment is off. 

I can have remarkably good judgment about business, other people's issues; but I lack this good judgment when it comes to my own personal affairs.

So, while I am disappointed for now, I know tomorrow is another day.

Inner Strength

"You can tell your inner strength by your outward actions;" That thought was discussed this weekend at church. It gave me pause. It answered a great deal about my inner self.

I have always admired people that are in total control. You know about whom I am talking. Even in the most heated discussions and life events, they are in total control. Let others scream and act out, not them; they never look like the fool. Their answers are measured and logical, they don't fall into others' emotional traps.

I remember an incident, years ago, when I first divorced and my children were very small. My ex-husband would get the children on Sundays. One particular Sunday, I was working a special event for a non-profit organization. I couldn’t make it home by the time the children were dropped off.

My ex-husband and his then girlfriend decided to leave the children unattended at my apartment; despite the fact that I called ahead and explained I would be late. I was livid, and let them know it. While I was acting out and screaming like a crazy woman, my ex-husband’s girlfriend grabbed the phone and never raised her voice. Now what she had to say was unkind and cruel, but the WAY she said it just floored me.

To this day, my children remember the incident. I felt like a total idiot. Why did I let myself become so emotional? You see what I mean, don't you? Maybe I can learn control with training and practice. It is hard for me to keep my emotions in check.

On the other hand, I break out and cry to share joys and sorrows. Sometimes, it is a curse because I can actually "feel" others’ pain and it hurts terribly. Where others sympathize, I empathize. I bear this cross.

Does that mean I am a marshmallow inside? Maybe I never had the foundation I needed to be a stronger person. Whatever it is, it is me, and I have learned to live with those feelings.

Those feelings keep me from being a "shark" at work, or succeeding where others' fail. That is both a blessing and a curse.

Then there is that other famous expression..."to thine own self be true."


I am feeling very guilty at the moment. I have neglected my blog. I didn’t plan this, it is just that a wonderful thing happened; I found work and have been in training. I am training to do something I have never done before in my life. In fact, it is highly technical. I have already told myself that failure is not an option, and that any job worth doing is worth doing well. Unfortunately, I gave myself permission not to write every day.

There is actually more to it than this. I was very ill for a few weeks, with a flu-like virus. It was all I could do to show up at work for training. So, there you have it.

It is a quiet Valentine's Day, and I am sitting home watching "Julia and Julia." Since it is all about a blog, well, you know the rest.

I am approaching 2010 with a great deal of optimism. I feel that new doors are finally opening for me, and are well deserved. I have paid my dues, and I am ready for the universe to reward me with abundance.

Nevertheless, I am going to make every effort to keep on writing. How can I ever finish a book if I keep making excuses?

What that being said, I wish you a good evening and Happy Valentine's Day/

New Love

Lil' Mo

Loving animals apparently runs in the family. My sister shows Collies', and my brother just announced he is the new father of a 3 month-month old Great Dane, "Mojita." She is just precious, thought you'd want to take a look.

He called me with a zillion questions such as "She is dumping 4 times a day, is this normal?' Of course, the first question I asked him was if she was de-ormed. After he shared all her peculiarities with me; we set up a date, the big day, when I would get to meet her.

It seems our love of dogs goes back to the 50's, when I was a tot and my sister had her first collie, "Skippy." "Skippy" was the only male dog she ever owned from that time forward.  I can mentally account for each of her collies' throughout the years  with love and affection. There was "Charlie;" (the only mix, but she looked like 100 percent collie). Charlie was part German Shepherd.

Then, there was "Annie" and "Annie 1"; "Abigail" and "Abby." Add to that ”Vanessa" and "Ruby" who take center stage with "Rockstar". By the way, "Rockstar"  is not a collie, but a longhaired Chihuahua!

As a young man, my brother had a German shepherd, "Zsa Zsa."   "Zsa Zsa" was very selective about whom she liked. I remember an argument my grandmother had with my brother. It ended with her dress ripped by "Zsa Zsa" and her girdle being exposed!

So It comes as no surprise that I can’t wait to welcome the newest member of the clans' extended family.

In the meantime, take a peek yourself.


As life's plan unfolds, I am gifted with the understanding that our lives have been brought together for a reason. It is a gift to share together our joys, and hopes, and dreams. Thank you for being my friend.

I received a beautiful vase recently from a dear friend. It is eggshell white; tied at the neck with a checkered blue bow. The top is shaped like a rose that is beginning to open. It contains the little inscription above.

Blue hearts dance around the inscription.

I have put it on top of my bedroom dresser. This vase is a profound reminder that someone loves me. Just for me. Not because I am nice all the time, not because I say and do what I think they want to hear. They love me for being me. The good, the bad and the ugly. Yes, especially the ugly me.

Many years ago, when my then 14-year-old daughter went to visit her father in Connecticut, I received a call from my ex-husband announcing that she didn't want to come back to Colorado.  Instead, she wanted to finish high school in Connecticut. I came unglued. I was floored; no amount of pleading could change her mind. She was set on living with her father for her remaining years before college. Thoughts raced through my head at sonic speed: I wasn't going to see my little girl in her prom dress, her first date; I wouldn't be there when she went off to college.  Oh, I would see her, but, just as a detached party for a visit on occasion.

I wept and sobbed uncontrollably.  As I wept, I heard the door creak open, and in walked "my friend." There for good and bad, happy and sad. I shall never forget the warmth of her hug, and reassuring smile. It dawned on me that it really wasn't the end of the world. I could take my next breath. Life would go, on, and all would be well again.

I honestly don't know where I would be without my dear friends, because, regretfully; my family hasn't always been there for me.  I am the odd duck out; friends have been closer to me than family throughout my life. It is the little cross I have carried from early on.

God provides, the sun comes up, and like it or not, we move on.  Maybe we don't forget, and the empty hole never really gets to be filled. Healing comes to us gradually, and we start anew.

The next time I become "unglued" I will look at this vase and read the words aloud, very softly, one more time.

Show Off

It has been said the world over that "women dress for other women." I am no exception; and, I find the statement very true. Women love to compare outfits and compliment one another on "fashion statements" and accessories.

Okay, I am just going to a freaking training class. I still feel I have to dress professionally. So, instead of donning my blue jeans and a nice top, I put on my tights, a dress and boots today. Perhaps it's because I have been out of work so long and it is refreshing to be in the game again.

I must admit that I have always been a clotheshorse. Early on, I can remember that no matter how little I had to spend, I had to get something that made a statement. Good or bad, it didn't matter. I had to create a canvas with clothes.

However, if you catch me in the supermarket you won't want to pay me a compliment. I look like Greta Garbo resurrected. No makeup; sunglasses, egg beater hair, and long coats. No, I am not trying to sneak out with a six-pack of ginger ale. I am simply, hiding.

So, the next time you see me, you won't be surprised if I tell you:

"I love your diamond nose ring."

My Arrival

Just look at it. Untamed, wild and wonderful. I love the way the colors look like a Neapolitan ice cream. Rose, blue, grey and salmon. Wow! Imagine getting up in the morning and starting your day like this.

I have to pinch myself sometimes.

I have given up a great deal to live where I live. Funny thing is, I don't live like a King, and my lifestyle is probably the simplest it has ever been. No frills, no fancy clothes, but QUALITY OF LIFE.

When I grew up in Florida, I knew from early on, I did not want to spend the rest of my life in Miami. Oh, it was intriguing; it had its beauty, but not the kind of beauty I wanted.

What turns me on are the mountains, seasons, snow capped mountains, Christmases gazing out the window and counting the snowflakes. Yum, so deliciously exciting to me.

I have earned this lifestyle. I have lived my life, my children are all grown, and having fun making the mistakes I once made.

We all arrive at the same place. The day we decide, okay; this isn't a dress rehearsal. I am gonna take control of my life and do what I WANT TO DO.

I've arrived.


It sho' was nice to get through my first day of work today. The drama continues. I don't exactly have the job yet...I have to pass a test after training. You got it, something else to worry about. I am very good at this. I have mentally started the countdown.

Next, I get to worry about a new roommate. That's right. My son is moving out; here I am, wondering if I will get the ax murderess as my roomie. I calm myself knowing that my apartment community requires a background check; I think I am safe for the moment. Whew! Does it ever end?

When I was a young girl, a friend once told me "I had a very vivid imagination." I think I need to turn it off, power down, decompress. Easier said than done.

Guess what? I have reached the conclusion that no matter how much I worry, or how I try to control things, everything is going to unfold just as it should. No matter how many sleepless nights, no matter how many chants of "bad rice." It's all there, right in front of me, ready to roll out.

When I lay my head on my pillow tonight, I will repeat to myself:

"Everything is going to be alright."