Sunday, February 28, 2010


* I'm not quite sure why, but every conversation I have with my father leads to my defensiveness and even sometimes irritation, over the most mundane of topics. Case in point: Today he was asking how Tig's obedience class was going. And then he went on to say something to the effect that I must have a goal to make him "sane". What? He's just an excited dog, but he's a good boy. My response was, "no, the goal is for him to be happy. To give him something fun to do. To engage his mind. And to reinforce our bond." Whatever.

* Speaking of Tig, I took him on a very nice, long walk/hike/run/whatever in Mine Falls Park today. We saw a good number of other people, as well as dogs, during our outing and Tig was each time completely focused on me and willing to stick by my leg on a loose leash. He's really come a long way.

* On my way to the park this morning, I took a drive through the condo complex that I'm interested in, just to get a feel for the area. The place seems pretty nice and there also appears to some conservation land that abuts the property to East, which is a plus. Also, I noticed that the decks on the townhouse units are actually a bit bigger than I had originally thought. Still smaller than what I currently have, but larger than I had been thinking, so that's a plus. It was nice to see how close we would be to Mine Falls Park and other trail areas.

* I'm still a little bit traumatized by our nor'easter/hurricane/tornado or whatever it was that hit Southern NH on Thursday night, into Friday. I do not want to have to repeat that experience any time soon -- it was crazy! And now I'm rather overwhelmed with the task of figuring out how I'm going to address my damaged roof and porch. GAWD! It's always something. Add THIS to the pro list for moving to a condo townhouse.

* Post-hypnosis seems to be going well so far. I have not been tempted to binge (or really, to eat anything not in my best interests) and was motivated to do the walk today.

* I had some text messages from the kid who was riding Ruby this week down in Aiken for my trainer's "Kids' Camp Week". She sent me updates through the week and gushed about how much she loved Ruby. I always enjoy hearing when someone loves my horse and I really appreciated the updates. I told her that she could ride Ruby back in NH if she wants to. I am thinking especially for the weeks I'm on-call when it is hard for me to count on being able to ride at all.

* I'm enjoying this weekend quite a bit, I wish it was a long one!

Saturday, February 27, 2010

Hypnosis on a Saturday Morning

I had my hypnosis session today and I think that I'm still trying to process everything. Actually, I think it's going to take me a few days to really get a feel for whether it is working, to see what I'm getting out of it. So far, however, I'm thinking that the result has been positive.

Since this was my first time, the session started with a long talk with the hypnosis therapist. We talked a lot about my goals, my life, both past & present, my feelings, what stresses me out, what fulfills me, what I see as a healthy ideal. It was a very long discussion, but an interesting one. It actually kind of felt like therapy and I feel like he knew me pretty well after all that. Then he spent a little bit of time explaining how the mind works and how hypnosis works and how these things fit together. He told me what to expect and then asked me if I had any concerns and I said, "nope". I guess most people have concerns, but whatever.

Then it was time for the actual hypnosis. I sat in a comfortable recliner and basically just listened to his voice. At no point did I really feel any different. I didn't "go" anywhere or ever feel like I couldn't just open my eyes at any moment. Random, unrelated thoughts did cross through my mind from time-to-time (stuff like, 'what errands do I need to do after this?'), but I was able to let them drift past without latching onto anything. During this session there were a couple of distinct periods where he talked me through deeper & deeper relaxation (mostly by counting and imagery) and the rest of the time he just emphasized the behaviors to help me reach my goals, as well as emphasis on my positive attributes. When it was time to end, he counted me out of it and I opened my eyes and that was pretty much it.

I can't say that I felt any different. I felt pretty relaxed, but at the same time, less tired than I had felt when I had arrived. I was amazed to learn, however, that our hypnosis session had lasted 40 minutes! If someone had asked me, I would have sworn it was no more than 15 minutes, if that. The jury is still out on whether this will have any effect on my behavior in my real life, but I'm willing to be open-minded about it. Already I can say that all I wanted for dinner tonight was a Lean Cuisine, even though I have a steak in my fridge. So that gives me a little bit of encouragement. It will be interesting to also see if there is any effect on my stress/anxiety levels. So I have a lot to think about this week and will be posting updates!

All-in-all, I was there for over 2.5 hours! I signed up for another session for next week, this will be a much shorter session, just the hypnosis part, I think. The therapist said for this type of work that three sessions are recommended. He said that after the three, most people are pretty well on track. We'll see.

Friday, February 26, 2010

Boxers are the Best

Anyone who knows me knows that I am not a kid person. And I'm especially not a a baby person. But even I thought this was unbelievably adorable. Of course, I am completely in love with the dog, not the kid, but you expected that. Right?

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Wet Dog

My Boxer, Tig, is the biggest water weenie that I've ever met. Human or canine, that's saying a lot. Big time wimp.

So, tonight it's pouring down rain. I mean, teeming, driving, torrential rain. And of course at some point Tig has to desperately go out. That is until I open the door and he sees the rain. I guess he had to pee pretty badly though, because he jumped outside anyway, after a big hesitation. Normally, he would immediately back away from the door when he saw that kind of rain. So out he slinks, looking over his should at me (which means that I now have to go out there with him). So, Tig gets half-way out in the yard and decides, nope, it's not worth it and bolts back for the door. Ugh, I know how this is going to go. He's going to go back in the house and will just start bugging me to go out again, so, no freaking way! So, I corral him back across the deck and back down the stairs, and he tries to get back to the door. I block, he bolts around me and back to the door, I chase him back down in to the yard. And so it goes, back & forth in crazy freaking rain until we're both completely and utterly soaked. Finally he stands there at the bottom of the steps shivering and looking at me. I stand at the bottom of the stairs and shoo him farther into the yard. FINALLY he gets to business, trots a little way out, sniffs and pees and then runs again for the door, this time I let him go, of course. He could have peed in 20 seconds and gotten it over with, without all the drama, I didn't need to be now sitting here soaking wet and freezing. Stupid dog, SHEESH!

Edited to Add @ 9:31 PM: Heaven help me, that dog wants to go out again!

Edited to Add # 9:42 PM: And ... I'm soaked again. The dog looks at me like the weather is my fault or something.

Moving "Fantasy" Update

As an update to my moving fantasy of the other day: I bit the bullet earlier in the week and sent a query to a real estate agent. He called me last night and I was able to discuss with him at length what I was thinking of doing. He seems to think that it may perhaps be doable. Maybe. He said that there are some tax incentives for buyers right now, so he thinks that I should get my place on the market immediately to take advantage of this possible motivation. The tax incentive expires sometime in April, so if someone is potentially interested in my place, there is a big advantage to them having a contract in place by the April, whatever cut-off date.

I'm a little overwhelmed, to put it mildly.

In any case, he's going to come by my house next weekend to do a market analysis and then we're going to go look at some townhouses in the complex that I'm interested in. I guess it can't hurt to take a stab at this, I don't have to sell if I suddenly chicken out, or don't get a decent enough offer. Still ... yikes!

Edited to Add: I should mention that my real real estate fantasy is to buy some charming cottage in Hollis. But I'm unlikely to be able to realistically afford this anytime soon (or in my lifetime, if I'm going to truly be honest with myself). The condo idea above is my current, semi-realistic fantasy. Just so we're clear.

Friday, February 19, 2010

Hypnosis Scheduled

Well, I have an appointment set for the hypnosis place. Unfortunately, I couldn't get anything before next Saturday, but it will be here soon enough. Should be interesting, I'll make a point of posting about my experience.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

I always have one fantasy or another going

I've been fantasizing this week about downsizing a little bit. Selling my house and buying a townhouse close to where I board my horse. The more I think about it, the more I like the idea. But the thought of it also completely overwhelms me. So, I'm making out a pro & con list. Here is what I've come up with so far:


* Cheaper (smaller mortgage, less property taxes, may be less HOA (not sure about that last one)
* MUCH closer to the barn. Like by 25 mins each way -- this is HUGE to me.
* A bit smaller (less to clean and less area to keep track of), might be a warmer space in the Winter (lower utility bills).
* Central air (at least the place I was thinking of).
* Closer to Nashua amenities (like Trader Joes, hello!)
* Less stuff to maintain (yard, outside stuff).
* This particular place has a swimming pool.
* The condo place I'm thinking of also has walking trails.
* There are at least three other areas of conservation land trails very close by.
* It's just beside the border to my favorite town (Hollis).
* I'd be closer to some of my cousins and some other people I know from the barn.


* No backyard or screened porch, smaller deck. much less personal outdoor space.
* Attached walls.
* No garage.
* Smaller space (can be looked at as both a plus and a minus).
* Only 1.5 baths, no master bath (I don't think).
* Selling and buying and closing and moving is enormously expensive, not to mention a huge pain-in-the-butt.
* I currently have an excellent mortgage rate, it would piss me off to have a higher %.
* I'm sure I couldn't get as much for my house right now as I paid for it.
* All the work I would have to have done on my house in order to even think about selling it.
* Sure would miss being able to just let the dogs out all the time.
* Being in an attached townhouse, the dogs might bark more (I don't care so much, but neighbors might object).

Break-even stuff

* About the same distance to work (give or take maybe 3 minutes).
* Both locations are pretty close to grocery stores, etc.
* With the outlay of money it takes to sell, buy and move, the money part might actually break even for a while.

Most likely this is all a moot point because I suspect that I would not be able to sell my house for near enough for it to make any sense. I think the biggest reason that I'm fantasizing about this right now is because I really, really, really want to be closer to Ruby, while not adding any time to my commute. And the idea of paying less per month, in general, is a very attractive idea too. If I could get what I paid for my house it would absolutely make sense. But it is a whole lot of trouble, not to mention up-front expense, to jump through the hoops to be in a position to even think about selling. Well, maybe I'll look into it come Spring, see if I can find someone to recommend a real estate agent. Or maybe I'll put the thought on the back burner and think about it again in another year. Food for thought anyway.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010


Heaven help me, but I just sent an email to a hypnosis center in an adjacent town. I have to find a way to combat this continued anxiety, and the idea of hypnosis has always intrigued me. I would also be interested to see if it could help me with fitness goals, general focus, finding a "center", etc. I guess it couldn't hurt to check it out anyway, if I don't feel it's for me, I don't have to go back. If nothing else, it might make for an interesting blog post.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Ski Racing

A very brief video of my nephew at a recent ski race -- just a glimpse as he flies past:

He made the qualifier for the Western Junior Olympics!

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Worry, Worry, Worry

I've been feeling a little, I don't know ... lost over the past week or two. I think most of it is stemming from worry. Mostly worry about work. I am worried about continuing to have a job. I worry about the stuff I'm working on, I worry about the stuff I may end up working on. I worry about what I don't know, or whether I am learning enough, or quick enough. I worry about the stuff I haven't learned yet or the stuff I can maybe learn, but perhaps need assistance with at first (and how to ask, or who to ask). I worry about the stuff other people are given to do. I worry about being out of the loop. I worry about being so much in the loop that I can't devote enough time or attention to any, one thing. I worry about what team members think about me, I worry about what customers think about me. Worry, worry, worry, worry. I worry so much and so constantly that my heart literally pounds and my breath comes so fast that I actually pant. I'm basically a bit of a wreck right now. It's a shame because I had such a nice period where I actually felt comfortable and content at work. I guess my anxiety took a bit of a holiday, but it's back in full-swing now.

(I hate to admit it, but I even worry that I haven't written a blog post in a while, or what I'm going to write about, or how to write it, or whatever. I am such a freak!)

I think this is partially the result of the current climate (both economically and the changes that have been going on at my company) and partially it is just my nature and my continued feelings of insecurity and my lack of self-esteem. I do know that if I could push myself to exercise more, that would help balance my emotions. If I could sleep a little better, that would help too. I have always craved for a feeling of financial/employment security and I have never, ever really felt it, no matter what job I had at the time. I'm not sure if this is just my general emotional make-up or if it's also a little bit of mild PTSS from a period of time growing up when my father was unemployed. Perhaps the feelings of worry from my parents during that time of my life leaked into my psyche and made more of a lasting impression than I realized. Whatever the cause, I need to think of healthy ways to deal with this continued anxiety.

I miss my horse very much, and I know that when I'm riding, I truly do not think about anything else at all. However, it's also hard to motivate myself to ride during the Winter and she is also doing so wonderfully down in Aiken (she got THIRD in her division at the Sporting Days HT on Sunday!) that I don't at all regret sending her down there. She is going to come back a much better horse than she left, I know that. I am also looking forward to having her for my week in Aiken at the end of March. That will hopefully be an entire week where I won't think or worry about work (or not much anyway).

Taking Tig to his new obedience class is helping a bit too. He and I are both enjoying the class and I make sure that I spend at least a little bit of time each day on our "homework". It's great to have some productive time that has absolutely nothing to do with work, and that also has nothing to do with my weight or my fitness level, another source of worry & anxiety, let me tell you.

When I exercise I actually think about work quite a bit. But I think about it with more perspective, or more reasonable perspective anyway. I have found that it really can help me balance my emotions and my worries. I can puzzle out problems and I feel better about the things that I can't control. So, I think that has to be my goal going forward. Do something (anything!) for exercise everyday. Even if it's just taking a dog for a 15 minute walk. SHEESH. What a mess I am.