Grace brought Ms Lemz home as a kitten just before she went off to Carnegie Mellon four years ago.
Claire stayed here with me and went to college locally, but Claire and Grace are both out of school now, working full time. Claire has been looking for apartments with her longtime boyfriend, Paul.
Ms. Lemons is really bonded with Claire and her boyfriend, so she’s moving out with Claire in a few weeks.
I’ll miss Claire, as well as Ms. Lemons. Both have been my roomies for four years. I’ll have to visit them both at Claire’s place. Lemz will be happier with Claire and Paul, she’ll get more attention from them than from me, especially if I’m out of town.
Things change, our lives move on. I’m glad Claire and Grace have grown up, it makes me really proud as their father.
This is a new chapter for me, and since I’m traveling frequently I don’t want to have another pet that needs daily care. All the plants around my house are enough, thanks to Grace!
A few weeks ago I dropped $140 at Lowe’s to buy a bunch of flowers for the front garden.
I’m rocking various pentas, some mums, roses and some celosias. Bees love my front garden.
I even planted flowers around my mailbox.
I’m totally at peace being here solo, being healthy, having a lovely home.
I also have a ton of options… the future has not been written yet, but I’m optimistic.
This past Saturday I sang two hymns at a funeral service for a lovely woman in my church community.
Delaine Holsopple passed peacefully in her sleep last week, and her husband Gary asked me to sing “How Great Thou Art” and “Amazing Grace”.
It was an honor to do so.
Delaine was a deeply Christian woman, and Gary told me she liked those songs.
As I sat there in church, getting ready to sing, I realized that I was supposed to be THERE in that moment, there was NO other place where I was meant to be. God blessed me with a decent voice, He blessed me with my church community, and the best way that I could serve my community in THAT moment was to sing for Delaine.
For the last few years I’ve struggled with my PURPOSE, I knew that I had found my professional purpose with Tampa Bay Solar, that was a no brainer; help roll back global warming AND make a great income?
I’m grateful to be in the solar business.
In my personal life I know that my purpose is to be a good father to Claire and Grace, a loving son for my Mom and Dad and a good sibling to George, Andrea and Danielle.
Even a good uncle to my nieces and nephews.
Perhaps at some point in the future: a kind and loving husband to my wife, if I’m blessed to be married again.
Being single has given me cause to reflect, and I know that things are happening right now for a reason.
My times of loneliness, isolation, sadness have given more insight in regards to my Spiritual Purpose.
I’ve found a certain measure of Peace in this.
I’ve drawn comfort and connection from the folks in my church community.
Perhaps my Spiritual Purpose is to be with these people, love them, even sing to honor them.
There are larger forces moving within my heart, and that is OK.
I’ve been on and off Match since my divorce back in 2017.
I’ve met true love on Match once, thus far:
Sometimes we have to move on, because you can love someone… but if you both want different things, what’s a guy gonna do? I loved her, and I grew to love her 3 children as well. Even good things come to an end, no matter what we do.
This is from a Match profile I saw this morning:
No Non-Christians/masons. No drama/melodrama. No drugs/meds/alcohol/addiction/midlife crisis/emotionally disturbed/mental health issues. No conning/lies/secrets/hidden agenda/gaslighting/mind-games/diversions/sabotage. No self-aggrandizing/attention-seeking/superficiality/vainglory/vanity/selfies/shallow-mindedness. No egoism/egocentrism/greed/golddigging/bankruptcies/failed business ventures/second mortgages/debt/credit issues. No criminal/dubious/nefarious activities. No entitlements/trust funds. No communists/socialists/democrats/liberals. No cats.
I love how she lists all these awful things, and then “no cats” at the very end.
Her NO list makes me wonder how many awful guys she dated!
The hard part about finding a partner at my age (47) is that everyone has been hurt, everyone has had some relationship disappointments, everyone has walls up.
I get it.
I’m still optimistic about my search, mainly because this process has taught me more patience and more discernment. Going back to church helps.
More of Him, less of Us.
I’m taking action on a daily basis to be MORE healthy, more kind, more compassionate.
I don’t pray for the perfect woman, because she does not exist. I’d rather pray for more wisdom in this process.
Meanwhile? I’m doing my 10,000 steps, going to a Men’s Leadership class at at church, selling solar and paying off my dwindling mortgage.
Traveling, sometimes alone, and seeing all the amazing National Parks around the United States.
Today I’m singing 2 hymns at a funeral…. for a woman who passed in my church community.
This is my life, and I wouldn’t have it any other way.
Last week I flew out to Flagstaff and toured a bit around the northern half of Arizona.
Went to see the Grand Canyon, from the ground and via helicopter!
If you have never seen the Grand Canyon in person…. save up your money and go see it!
Worth every penny. The helicopter ride was $219 per person.
I got a funky little Air BnB in Flagstaff and discovered the beautiful mountain woods and Snow Bowl mountain near that area, see pics :::::::::::::
Sat at the top of SnowBowl and just felt peaceful. The clouds, the valley below…. pics don’t do it justice.
Explored the area around Sedona and even the weird hilltop town of Jerome.
Took a Ghost Tour. Did not see a ghost, it kinda felt like a scam.
Friday night I was driving in the mountains from Sedona back to Flagstaff and I pulled over and turned off the car lights just to look at the sky… it was so dark I could see the Milky Way and a billion other stars right above me. Worth it just to see the dark sky like that, at higher altitudes.
Travel is mentally healthy, and all that hiking and exploring is helping me get back in shape after my knee surgery last March. I’m not fully recovered yet, my health is not where I’d like it to be. I’m taking daily action to change that.
My next trip is to see Carlsbad Caverns in New Mexico… by then I’ll be a bit thinner, a bit healthier, etc.
One thing I realized while hiking at almost 12,000 feet? I’d like to be in better cardio shape, and maybe 20 pounds lighter! After I got back I downloaded the Noom app and bought a new Fitbit.
Doing 10,000 steps each day NOW will get me in better shape for my New Mexico trip!
I was totally solo on this trip, and I’ve never really done that before. During the trip I was uploading some of these pics to a family group text, so I was sharing my experience with my family…
This year has not been easy for me, there were moments when I was in pain, moments when I prayed, and cried, and felt down. I needed this trip. It was a great reset.
I’m glad I went to see the Grand Canyon, and I’m ready to move forward to a new chapter in my life that is healthy, with travel, and new horizons, maybe even new relationships!
I bought a used Talera mountain bike over a year ago… and barely rode it until recently.
My left knee was reconstructed in March, and the physical therapist told me biking would help it heal.
For several months after my surgery it was implossible to ride a bike, my range of motion had not come back yet.
When I could pedal again I started doing shorter rides…..
In the last few weeks I’ve been pedaling a 17 mile route through Wesley Chapel and New Tampa, mostly on trails and sidewalks…. takes me almost 2 hours, but it feels great when I’m done. 17 miles is no bullshit!
The bike also fits in the back of my Volt!
I went from going 170mph on a 200hp Kawasaki ZX-14 to pedaling at 15mph through the suburbs… but I’m healthier, so there’s that.
170mph is an adrenaline rush, for sure. NOT real healthy if something goes sideways at that speed.
I could still get walloped by a car on my mountain bike… so I wear a DayGlo yellow high vis t-shirt.
Before you get in your time machine and travel forward to the year 2078 make sure you do 2 things:
Look up when dangerous asteroids (see “Bennu”) are about to hit the planet and visit a future point in the years BEFORE these events happen. Bennu might hit Earth in 2082, so I’d visit prior to that. Future technology will probably take care of this issue, but there are no guarantees in life.
Make sure you hire a Dr. (in 2021) with an updated vaccine waiting exactly where you land in the future.
You see, the 2021 version of your body has immunities up to THIS point in time, so all the nasty virulent stuff that pops up in the next few decades will surely kill you. And yes, Covid19 is NOT going to be the last nasty pathogen that whacks the human race.
Of course, 40 or 50 years from now vaccines might not be needed at all because medical technology will be far better than today, assuming that humany sontinues along our current path without any macro disruptions.
Someone with 2021 natural immunities who finds themself in 2078 will be like the indigenous people who met Europeans carrying smallpox 300 years ago. Entire villages were wiped out.
Read “Guns, Germs and Steel” by Jared Diamond.
Great book. He talks about how easy it was to just march over indigenous people because they would be very sick within a few weeks of first contact. Sadly, the Europeans conquerors saw this as “God’s favor” on the Europeans.
Not true, the North American people had merely been isolated from European pathogens. They had zero natural immunity.