Remembering My First Night Here

The other day I remembered how I felt on my first night in this apartment not much more than a year ago. Overwhelmed, of course. The sight of boxes everywhere needing to be unpacked.

But the memory, the moment, that really sticks out for me is when it was bedtime. I remember walking down the hall and feeling my way into the bedroom with my hands out in front of me.

Woodward park

I recall thinking that I’d have to adjust to the light and the dark in a different place. I’d have to slowly memorize my way around these rooms in the darkness of night.

I remember turning the corner into my bedroom. Seeing a little bit of light seeping in around the patio door.

It’s funny how random thoughts will stick in the subterranean regions of your mind. Until one day they push through the daily minutia and remind you of little unimportant things.

Adjusting To A New Home:

I knew Ivy and Gracie would have to adjust to their new home last year. Sadly, Gracie only lived a couple of months here before she died. I so miss her sweet little self.

Ivy, just as she did on the day I first brought her home from the pet rescue, seemed right at home in this new place. She’s not afraid of much and she’s full of spirit and energy.

It was rocky at first after Gracie died. The lack of her presence was like a giant empty space in the middle of the room. It’s been almost a year now.

The other day I was thinking that I don’t have much to write about anymore. I don’t go to the antique mall and come home and show you my finds. And I can’t go out to my favorite haunts to take photographs around Tulsa.

My life has been pressed into a small box. This apartment is for all intents and purposes my world. So it’s important that I surround myself with pretty things.

Last Night:

I do love this apartment. Last night I was headed back to my bedroom to read before bedtime, as I always do.

Woodward Park garden

But just as I got to the end of the hall on my knee scooter, I felt this need to stop and look back into the living/dining space. I’d turned off the lights, so what I mostly saw were the bulky shadows of the furniture.

For some reason, I felt the need to look at this space where I sit in my chair every day and write to you.

When I got to my bedroom, Ivy was in there waiting for me. Once I get settled, she will find a spot on the soft gold throw I arrange for her at the end of my bed. And then she will nap while I read.

I remember thinking: I really love this space. I love decorating the mantel and switching things up on the table surfaces.

An Outing That Was Canceled:

We’d planned for Steve to come over after his massage this morning. We had planned on a trip to the garden center. Some of you have mentioned that that would be a way I could still enjoy having things growing around me. And you were right.

Once I got to thinking about having house plants around me again, it was all I could think about. Who gets so excited about a few house plants?

But I was having some ankle pain yesterday and I decided against going out today. I’m learning my limitations. I’m learning too listen to my body. So we put off the outing until next week.

It’s probably best that I get the other desk together, which should be delivered today. And then I can take stock of what is where. And then I can decide on the amount of house plants that I should get for my office/craft/sewing room.

I’ve learned that instead of mourning what you can’t do, it’s best to turn that around to: This I can do.

Adjusting To Changes:

You adjust your need and desire for things. Sometimes it’s only a small shift that is needed. Like putting plants inside instead of outside. Although I’m sure I’ll manage to get plants for the patio in the springtime.

For now I will do what I can do. I’ll still find joy in watching a small green shoot appear on plants and unfurl like a flag. Whether it’s indoors or outdoors.

Whether they are placed in front of a window or are outside on the concrete.

Nature is all the animals, plants, and other things in the world that are not made by people, and all the events and processes that are not caused by people.

Swan Lake Tulsa

Words About Being Alone From Author Hunter S. Thompson:

Hunter S. Thompson, the eccentric journalist, once wrote: “We are all alone, born alone, die alone, and—in spite of True Romance magazines—we shall all someday look back on our lives and see that, in spite of our company, we were alone the whole way.

I do not say lonely—at least, not all the time—but essentially, and finally, alone. This is what makes your self-respect so important, and I don’t see how you can respect yourself if you must look in the hearts and minds of others for your happiness.”

Hunter S. Thompson’s Death:

At 5:42 pm on February 20, 2005, Thompson died from a self-inflicted gunshot wound to the head at Owl Farm, his “fortified compound” in Woody Creek, Colorado. His son Juan, daughter-in-law Jennifer, and grandson were visiting for the weekend.

Hunter Thompson was 67 years old. He was a longtime contributor to Rolling Stone Magazine. His first book, Hell’s Angels, published in 1966, was an inside look at the notorious biker gang. For his efforts, Thompson got himself roughed up by some of the gang’s members.

Hunter S. Thompson wrote the book, “Fear And Loathing In Las Vegas”. It was made into a movie starring Johnny Depp, Benicio Del Toro, and Tobey Maguire.

A strong bond had been formed between Thompson and Johnny Depp in the making of the movie in 1998. They remained friends until the legendary journalist’s death in 2005.

Depp famously paid for Thompson’s funeral. Thompson’s ashes were fired out of a cannon at his funeral, which was something Thompson had wanted.

The funeral was a private event on Thompson’s estate in Woody Creek with almost 300 people in attendance. Completing the spectacle were red, white, and blue fireworks and Bob Dylan music blasted from giant speakers.

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  1. Brenda I admire you for not going out when you knew it best to stay in. That is hard to do when we are tempted with going out to do something fun; however you made a thoughtful self care decision that was very wise. I love to garden outside but I equally love my houseplants. I think adding live plants to your home brings a beautiful elevated look to the rooms. I try to carefully buy and place them where they will get the right amount of light. I would suggest (from personal experience lol) buying just a few to start with and adding on later. I think you will love caring for them and watching them grow! Added bonus they are airpurifiers! Hunter S. Thomson was interesting – I did not know much about him but I do know his book/film. Johnny Depp has some interesting friends.

  2. Loved this post, especially the background on Hunter Thompson. I did not know anything about him, but knew that one of the Doonesbury cartoon characters was based on him. If you need Blog ideas, short bios of famous authors would be fun: Faulkner, Hemingway, Capote were all fascinating characters. I’ve wondered if author Nora Roberts is a real person or a pool of writers since her styles seem to change, I’ve noticed that even TV personalities like Chris Wallace and Ina Garten are doing famous-people interviews. Probably everyone runs out of inspiration sometimes, and broadening our worlds with real-life characters is interesting and edifying.

  3. Your blog is what I love about the blogging world. It is more personal and fellow bloggers can connect. IG and Pinterest and FB are forms of sharing but I just feel I like to have content and story with a blog. So many have gone to posting a picture on IG or quick pic and sentence on FB. Blogging seems more of a connection. Glad you enjoy blogging and continue your posts.
    Have a good week.

  4. Brenda, I love your blog! You are real and you share real life, the ups and downs, aging and more. The good, the bad, the fun, the ugly, etc. Sadly, so much of social media only shows the good/beautiful which gives a people a false narrative of life.
    Keep sharing and being you!
    As for the first night in your new place, look how far you have come. A new place with friends, and stability, that is a good thing.
    Take care of yourself, you are doing the right thing staying home when you have pain.
    Looking forward to seeing what you make in your new room!

  5. I find most subjects you share to be interesting…even things I cannot or do not do myself. I find in this one common ground too…the alone thing is something we all will face eventually, or we die first…but even with a mate, there are times one feels very alone too…even a good mate. We are all a bit different. I think I see my life as mostly a bunch of events that required loosing something…sometimes people, sometimes things, sometimes dreams and hopes, but all requiring adjustments. For most of us humans, I do think life is a series of adjustments. I think you are doing well coping, Brenda, as well as learning to listen to the body. I can no longer push myself so hard either. Especially as my hubby depends on me for so much of his existence now. So there are days when I say no, we are not going anywhere today. Maybe tomorrow or the next day or next week. Taking time to rest whenever needed. I hope you will continue writing here…even if not everyday. I will always check to see if you are blogging each day…but one understands how life has changed for you (for us too). Sending hugs, Elizabeth

  6. Your blog is just fine. You are real life, with its ups and downs, pluses and minuses. I am also busy with so many projects so I’m never lonely. I’m going through the second week of a cold, which is the first in about twenty years. Buut, I’ve completed my taxes, organized papers, read books, and in general stayed in and enjoyed being by myself. I have social contact through emails, facebook, telephone calls with friends and relatives. All is well. I am eating extremely well, which is the best part right now. Really focused on my health and being grateful for everything in my life. I enjoy reading your blog.

  7. P.S. I don’t ever find your posts boring or dull, Brenda. There’s nothing wrong with living life day by day, and indeed, how else are we supposed to do it??? Not every day is going to be smash bang full of exciting things, and thank goodness for that! Personally, I prefer my quiet life and don’t mind at all that I’m alone much more than being around people. It’s a choice as much as a personality trait, it’s just fine to not be a social butterfly.

  8. We are having crazy weather in SE Wisconsin. It is 53 degrees F currently outside and the sun is shining. Last Thursday we had a sleet/ice/snow/rain storm that left a MESS behind. Now everything is melting and I discovered some water leakage in my basement, just what I don’t want to deal with. Unfortunately the prior owners put glued down carpet in their “rec room” area. Who puts carpet in a basement in Wisconsin where we have classic clay soil that doesn’t drain well? Egad, it’s driving me nuts! I am not strong enough to attack pulling the carpeting up by myself. If it was regularly laid carpeting, I could do it, by cutting it in small narrow strips and tugging it up from the floor as I rolled it up, but the glued-down stuff is nearly impossible to remove and requires expensive equipment to be brought it to basically grind the stuff off the concrete floor. Forgive me for venting, I am feeling angry and frustrated today.

  9. I can’t wait to see your wool felt projects. I get excited about houseplants! And any and all plants! Spending as much time as possible with the grands before they move. Needless to say, everything has an extra coat of dust! Worth it because as you said, our children and grandchildren are always busy!

  10. I love the simplicity of your blog that reflects inner peace and self satisfaction. A nice respite from the crazy, loud, competitive, cut throat world out there of people trying to make themselves happy by buying more and more. You’ve got your lovely oasis and sweet companion, Ivy, and a boatload of contentment which you do artfully share with us. Thank you!

  11. I’m glad you’ve listened to your body and decided to avoid going out today to the plant store. When you go next week you will probably enjoy it so much more than you may have today.
    Like you my life has been compressed into a small box but I love it so much. I feel safer, peaceful and content. Although it bothers a couple of my neighbors that I don’t seem to go out. I think it’s funny that it bothers them. I have very little desire to go out and find myself putting it off when there’s a need to go out.
    I remember how excited you were when you found your beautiful new home. So many of us were celebrating with you and couldn’t wait for moving day. Be happy and celebrate the small things!
    Enjoy your day, Brenda!

  12. I enjoy your blog, Brenda, whatever you choose to write about. It’s like talking (in person) to a friend, about a normal day and sharing thoughts. You don’t have to have lots of news, just what you are doing is perfect.
    Since you are on the subject of indoor plants, I have a question. I’ve got an African Violet on my east kitchen window sill. Bought it at Walmart two years ago. It had flowers when I bought it, but not since. They didn’t last very long, but the leaves are just fine. I keep it watered (from the bottom of pot like I’m suppose to) but still no flowers. Do you know anything about them? My Mother used to have one, and I remember it had flowers that came back after the first wilted.

    1. Here’s what I found: The most common reason African violets don’t bloom is because they aren’t getting enough light. African violets need indirect sunlight, direct can burn the leaves. Choose a north- or east- facing window for best results. Keep plants away from cold glass and rotate the pot once a week so all leaves receive light. And I would give it some Miracle Grow.

    2. The roots could be pot bound, maybe consider transplanting into a slightly larger pot with fresh potting soil and give it a small dose of fertilizer for house plants. I’ve noticed that my house plants are responding to the light growing daily by a few minutes and they’re starting to send up new leaves. They will need a little boost from fertilizer.

  13. I’m sorry you didn’t get to go house plant shopping today. It was good that you acknowledged your limits and rescheduled your trip. I’m sure your ankle will thank you for that, lol. It’s hard to believe you’ve been in your new apartment for a whole year already. So many changes in the last year. It’s hard to believe little Gracie has been gone almost a year as well. We all loved her too! I think you doo a great job providing us with content to read everyday. I, for one, really look forward to your posts every single day! I appreciate you!

  14. Enjoyed your March 1 post!
    At least the cold winter months will be gone soon ,,,,, giving us the warmth of spring and summer! 🌞 I’m ready for the change!
    Many of the things you mentioned regarding “remembering” I also have those same feelings.
    It’s comforting, brings us happiness 😊 knowing our surroundings are beautiful and loved by us. ❤️
    I find it so amazing at my age, to even think, dream and fondly remember the home 🏡 we grew up in for countless years. I was 7 years old.
    Everyone was so excited to move.
    Easy to picture everything as it was in that home. Including our neighbors also!!
    Our memories are remarkable!
    Every so often I think if your sweet Gracie. 🐈 She’s missed. If only we knew what happened.
    That bothers me a lot.
    Thankful you have Ivy.
    Craft desk will be helpful.
    What are some if the things you’ll hope to make Brenda?
    Always a sad regarding an unhappy, severely depressed person that takes their life.
    This happens more than we realize.
    Best of to everyone on this chilly but sunny March 1.

    1. I’m planning to focus on working with my wool felt. No hemming thank goodness. Just adding shapes or embroidery. I figure that will be the least worrisome for my hands. I’d love to do applique on quilts again, but I know I can’t. So it will have to be applique on wool felt.

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