In between

Introducing the cats

A while back I was posting about the stray cat that eventually got ,sort of , adopted by my parents. (Matilda’s story right –Here– ).

Matilda got really docile and allows us to pet her. She still comes every day for food and she spends part of her time in our garden or sleeping on the chair that is at the front door. She refuses to get inside the house, not that Arielle would ever accept that , but overall she got familiar with the place and considers it as her own territory. Also she gave birth but we don’t know where. She didn’t choose the barn where my dad prepared a place for her, or the place that my mom made . At this point we aren’t even sure if her kittens are still alive. Matilda comes and goes.

A couple of days ago she got into a big fight with 3 other stray cats and one of them managed to bite her pretty bad. Mom wasn’t able to catch her and take her to the vet , she is yet too wild and will scratch and bite if you try to pick her up. Mom wants to take her to the vet to spay her…but this task remains impossible at the moment. We are not giving up on the idea ! The good part is that mom picked up some medicine for Matilda’s wound and allows my mom to take care of it.

After we were done hiking and picking up spruce buds we went back at my parents for lunch. Since it was a sunny day we decided to take our orange boy with us so he can enjoy some sunshine too. I knew that the first meeting between Arielle and James will be interesting , but for sure I did not expected what followed !

Of course, Arielle wasn’t pleased to meet her new little brother ! Lots of hissing, cat arguments and PLENTY of drama!

I know it’s all about territory and what not, but slowly the hissing stoped and our boy got adventurous and started to explore the surrounding, under Arielle’s careful observation. I sure didn’t expected to see James being so fascinated by the outdoors, all the sounds, wind, sun , grass and flowers, considering that 6 months ago he was also picked up from the streets!

And of course, James tried to stay away from Arielle’s gaze as much as possible. We also didn’t allowed any physical contact between them .

At one point he was sunbathing right in front of Arielle ,but James was so focused on her (and Arielle on him, and the rest of us on them both) that he didn’t noticed Matilda. We didn’t noticed Matilda bolting in out of nowhere. She approached James from behind and tried to headbutt him. Rub her head on his. It all happened so fast!

James was caught off guard, jumped and hissed back at her. And from there all hell broke loose. Matilda is one feisty cat! The good thing was that both my husband and dad jumped in and managed to break the cat fight. We weren’t expecting Matilda to show up, and we definitely didn’t expected such reactions from neither of them! I mean, both James and Matilda are extremely friendly with other animals. More friendly than Arielle. Matilda first befriended our two dogs , before allowing us to pet her or come anywhere near Arielle. But I do believe that her outburst and violent reaction to James’ hissing was because of her last altercation with the other stray cats. My heart breaks for this little girl, to be honest .

The good news is that none of the cats were hurt. I managed to lift up James by the collar and my folks were fast to jump in and grab the other cat. I had to take James inside the house in order for him to calm down , just enough so we could put him in the cage and drive him back home.

The sad part is that at one point I was hoping to find fosters or people willing to adopt the kittens, catch Matilda, spay her and bring her over to our apartment so James wouldn’t feel so lonely anymore. Bad idea for now, but I’m not giving up on her!

In between

Thankful for my dad

Today I’m more thankful than ever. Yesterday morning a terrible accident happened at my dad’s working place. He was working with 2 other people, regreening a formal coal mine. They were preparing to demolish a 164 feet pillar, pillar that was supposed to be taken down with dynamite today…sadly the pillar unexpectedly collapsed. From the 3 workers only one managed to run into the right direction, the other two were caught under the remains.

The drivers who were working on the dump truck and excavator jumped off their machines but weren’t so lucky…they would had had better chances to survive if they remained inside the cars. Their cabins were almost intact. The one who managed to run into the right direction was my father. I cannot even begin to tell how many thanks I give to God !

My dad had a few scratches but had serious breakdown from the shock. Even so he refused to go home and helped the rescue team. A rescue team made out of 40 people dug for the rest of the day, the entire night and until today around noon. They found the two corpses…

My heart breaks for the two men…one was 41 years old, the other one was 31 years old. You know why this tragedy brings shivers on my spine? Because the 31 year old was my husband’s good friend and it was his first day at work. A week ago my father suggested to my husband if he wants to work on the dump truck and he refused. I could have lost my father too. I could have lost both my father and husband!

I pray that their souls rest peacefully .

In between

Inside the workshop

Still finding some joy in these dark days. My hobbies help me get my mind of the many questions that runs through my mind. A good portion of my energy goes into my creations and creativity is what keeps me going.

I am not so much worried about the virus, what it is written to happen will happen with or without our approval. This does not mean that I do not follow the protocol or the safety rules. All people should do so for their safety and their loved ones! Worrying is pointless as long as you don’t have the power to fix the things that worry you.

There is , however, something that is bothering and making me feel stressed. Somehow the handmade platform that was hosting my shop decided to suspend my store for whatever reason and without a warning. I’m selling on this platform for 7 years now. The plan was to launch my own store on a paid domain this year , because I find the taxes and fees too high on this platform, they et higher by the year. Dare I say quite abusive! Their new policies and rules are not to die for either.

My new store and branding are in work, so I obviously made some payments upfront here and there . But I am not able to officialy launch it until I meet up with my accountant to do some paperwork . I can’t meet up with my accountant because there is a military order to stay indoors.

Because of the payments that I made upfront I am not able to pay the fees and re-activate my account . I need to transfer from one bank account to the other one that has my PayPal attached to. For that I have to personally go to the bank, but I can’t because of the same reason mentioned above -the banks are temporary closed!

I don’t even know from where do I have to pay almost 200$ fees for the month of February , I didn’t made any sales or new listings or re-listing in February-March. I’m still working on the tons of orders that I got in November, December and January. Probably most of the customers that will notice my ,now invalid, shop will think that I’m a scammer and most definitely I will end up with a few open disputes via PayPal.

To top it , I can’t contact my customers and they can’t contact me through the platform. I tried emailing them but received no reply for almost two weeks now. I tried to contact the help center from the platform but received nothing back. Not the first time when questions remain without an answers and shop owners without a guidance.

Still counting my blessings despite the stones that are being thrown in my way. The troubles might be many , but I often think how lucky I am for having my husband with me! He was able to return back home just in time before the virus situation got worse. I can’t even imagine us being apart in such uncertain times! And I am so glad that his mind is so sharp and managed to learn fast about the craft! Now he is able to help me , and I can take some time to clean the house and cook!

I’m so glad that we decided to get back to our homeland and be next to our parents! Our concern was that they are old and prone to this virus. We are trying to protect them and us as much as we can. We are paying their bills and shop for them for whatever they need.

The rest of the days we are locked in the workshop , designing new items.

In between

Nettle picking and self isolating

It seems like we are living in some dark days lately. Everyone is panicking and hoarding stuff that they will eventually end up throwing away, at least some of the stuff. For the past 15 days or so the circumstances forced us to slow down a bit and take one day at a time. We are so lucky that we are able to still work from home and that for now this virus isn’t affecting our business and life too much.

Sure, we are trying as much as possible to limit our contact with other people and respect all the other norms that the government asks us to do for the sake of everyone’s safety. Most of the days we are indoors, locked up in our workplace anyway .

It is pretty difficult to maintain your sanity lately but I know that it will end soon and things will turn for the better. Humanity has seen and been through worse.

So what better refuge do we have than the mountains? Far away from the packed city and the people that are about to lose their minds and last hope.

We were lucky enough to find a bag full of nettle. I had gloves with me but these nettle are young and quite strong so the gloves were pretty useless. It was a price that I gladly paid and I can’t wait to cook part of them and freeze the rest!

In between

An angel with 4 paws for Christmas

I hope everyone is enjoying their Christmas / winter holidays! I hoped for snow till the last minute, but no such luck so far. We are having a black Christmas with lots of rain. It’s only snowing up in North and in the mountains .

This year we’ve decided to skip all festivities and spend a peaceful Eve just the two of us. Earlier in the morning we got the tree up and went out shopping. It was incredibly relaxing to spend the 24th of December just breathing , while other people were panicking about their last minute preparations.

We managed to complete all of our tasks a day before , I never had a free 24th of December until this year. I was always struggling with cooking and all untill the time arrived for dinner and guest were approaching our door. My family has lots of traditions when it comes to Christmas. As much as I love our Christmas traditions – they bring much exhaustion and kill the joy of this holiday. I just felt the need to say “no” to everything this year.

We decided to go to a ski resort for Christmas Eve. We had dinner at our place and then went out for a walk and some fresh air before we drove to the resort. While we were walking a stray dog followed us everywhere – and I mean everywhere!

The poor soul was terrorized by the firecrackers and drunken people. We didn’t had the heart to leave him alone so we decided to spend the rest of the night outside and offer him some comfort.

Like food. But he was so afraid of the loud noises that he barely ate anything. He was looking for shelter and begging not to be left alone. He jumped numerous times in my husband’s arms each time we tried to retreat and let him be.

My heart broke into million pieces because I don’t know what to do with this dog! I cannot even foster him, I don’t have the place or the time ; our visit home is short and work awaits as soon as the holidays are over!

Our four paws angel left as soon as things settled down and the morning arrived. So I guess we will do some skiing over day and return back at night to look after this dog. I’ve been burning my brain thinking of a solution, a place where I can take this dog , at least until all this Christmas/New Years madness ends!

In between

Taking risks

Have you ever came across a point in your life when you just wanted to make a big jump into the unknown? It happens to the best of us, like myself. I’m the kind of person who thinks 10 times- 20, if necessary – before making a final decision or before words are leaving my mouth . And even then I have doubts – that I should have thought about it a bit better. But for the last half a year I felt the need to just jump and see where I end. I don’t know what possessed me to just take a big risk for once and see what happens. Maybe I’m just driven by passion . Or maybe craziness do come with age. Or maybe fatigue caught up with me and I started to become numb and care less about the aftermath.

Sure, I continue to learn for the last 3 years or so , but I’m definitely not knowing everything about the domain that I decided to follow! I am perfectly capable of doing it manually, but on a mechanical level? Everything is computerized and is supposed to lower my working effort and give me some free time. but at this point it is only dragging me down and proved that once again I have a long road ahead of me.

It’s been a little over a year since I started to play with a project and in half a year it kind of got out of control and things expanded pretty fast. I’ve never expected to bring one of my passions to this level and I never expected to have so many people interested in my little hobby!

Husband was the only one who knew about it and the first to push me outside my comfort zone, as always. So I jumped. Do I regret it? No, I don’t regret for making the decision to bring this project to the next level , but I’m freaked out for my inability to assimilate all the information faster. Two weeks ago a small fortune was invested in these machines , that were supposed to make my days less miserable , and I can’t seem to be able to figure them out,

Only God knows how many hours I’ve been working, sometimes 24, sometimes over 30 without any sleep, educating myself, practicing, failing and re-starting all over again. A lot of sacrifices were made while I was slowly climbing the success ladder, mainly my health. I just can’t find the middle path, I’m always at the extremes . So what else did I managed to accomplish in this a little over a year? Somehow I managed to gain it’s trust and in the end became best friends with Insomnia. And Insomnia , being a bubbly and hyperactive friend, forced me to work for hours and sleep 3-4 hours per 24 for this entire year.

And of course, as it happens in real life, this best friend of yours also has a best friend, who isn’t necessary you – panic attacks! Oh, how bad things can turn for me when I’m sleep deprived for multiple nights in a row! I haven’t had them in few good years until I ruined my sleeping schedule. And here I am, face to face with my nemesis!

Panic attacks , disguised as something else, forced me to make a few nocturnal trips to the emergency room. And each time I was reassured that I’m not about to die, it is just in my head and I just need to rest. But how can I lay down and close my eyes when each time I was breathless and felt so much pain in my chest, knowing that my heart isn’t necessary working as it should be? At the emergency room I was told that I have intercostal neuralgia and that is what is setting up my panics . And of course the emergency room wasn’t enough so one morning I was desperately seeking to see a cardiologist . This was about 4 months ago. The cardiologist , before I even had my results, gave me the diagnostic that I’m into chronic fatigue and need to slow down. She was right. At least I know that my heart is keeping up with the effort and it isn’t failing me.

Seems like I have a damaged nerve in my spine because of the bad working posture. The lack of sleep and fatigue only adds pressure on it, which causes my neuralgia, which sets up my panic attacks, thinking that my heart is trying to shut me down. The panics makes me hyperventilate, which causes the muscles to contract , therefor my neuralgia pains gets worse and so does my panics. Now that I know what’s going on with me from a medical point of view it is much easier to communicate with my enemy . At least I got rid of the question that was killing me every night ” what’s going to be this time? A heart attack or a brain stroke?”. The answer is “none”. Just the panic attack having a party and waltzing with my damaged spine nerve ,on my self dug grave . I still receive a slap in the face now and then when I get frustrated and upset-my nemesis keeps reminding me of it’s presence , quietly watching me from the shadows.

For the last 2 weeks I’ve been trying to fix my sleeping problems. I’m in bed at 10 PM and I try not to find any excuses to stay awake past my bed time. My damaged spine nerve is causing me headaches in the back of my head each time I lay down and falling asleep is impossible most of the time. The pain stops and my head is clear as soon as I lift it up from the pillow. And of course my intercostal neuralgia is bothering me too in some nights. I’m pretty much learning how to sleep , what position to approach in order to keep my spine aligned correctly. Since a week ago I also started to practice stretching in the morning and especially before bed. The good news is that I fell better and the pain is bearable, enough so I can sleep over the entire night. The bad news is that I feel like I’m loosing my time with my new routine…I should be more productive. That’s how I function . The only reason why I force myself to make things right for my own good is, of course, my husband, who tries to put an end to my self destruction every time I’m off the tracks.

When I work, I work and I completely lose myself, especially if I love what I’m doing. From starving for days to not sleeping and staying locked in my working room for a long period of time. ” Slow down. Breathe. I’m here.” are the words that bring me to reality. I am so grateful for you, my love!

So did 2019 taught me something? Yes! Hard work makes good progress! The moment I feel a bit better I forget all the other lessons. I know I’m setting up a bad example here, but I’m sure that wise people understood and learned from this post what I keep forgetting. I will not disclose the project for now, if everything goes well it will be ready to run from next year. It all depends on me, really, and my ability to learn and work – and that’s driving me nuts. But at the same time I’m well aware that for now things need to slow down and I need to focus on my well being until next year. What I did realized is that this can’t continue as a one woman show, so from next year I will partner up with different people that will help me do the work faster. Often I bite more than I can chew.

Meanwhile, this kitty lives in our neighborhood and often greets me when I leave home early in the morning. I’m pretty sure she belongs to someone. She is clean, fat and looks as if she is being taken care of. I just had to include this picture in one of the posts.

In between

It’s already chaotic

Yesterday I went to visit my parents and spend a lovely afternoon in the garden , after a pretty chaotic morning . In a few weeks I’ll be gone again. So from the little time that I have I try to split it between everyone . I have missed my pets so much! Here you have my kitty , enjoying the last sunny days of autumn and my old buddy – my 17 years old buddy! Mom baked a pie and we had lunch in the garden under an old golden nut tree. My, God! You just have to love autumn!

After that I got back to work until almost midnight . I was planning to work until the morning but I remembered that I had to wake up early today . I had to drive all the way to my in-laws and take my mom-in-law to the hospital for a routine check. The doctor was pleased , her leg seems to be healing very good after the surgery. As a side note , remember to always go to the emergency room in time – especially when rusty nails are involved! Infections are never fun to deal with! Thank God that at least one of us was home and was able to assist her! We only wished that she had called sooner and not try to “take care” of the wound by herself. On a good note if she continues to behave she will be getting rid of the crutches by Friday.

Husband and I planned to get new phones this Christmas ; it seems that Christmas got a little earlier for me as mine collapsed first , this morning. I was so close to not wake up and get in time to my in-laws! For the past few months we only had issues with both of our phones and it was just a matter of time.

Seems like my mobile phone network provider just got new policies and they don’t sell phones without a subscription anymore. I’m already subscribed to them , my number belongs to their network and I pay monthly for it, but seems like I had to pay an extra monthly fee for the subscription (?) because I’m not eligible yet for a new phone (whatever that means ? ). I already picked up the phone that I wanted and was standing there , cash in hand, puzzled and not convinced that I heard her right . My phone was slowly dying , battery almost gone (was not able to charge it for two days) and an angry husband yelling obscenities back at the assistant – in my bluetooth earphone. So again I had to drive to the nearest gadget store to buy my new phone.

I don’t know what feelings other people get when upgrading but I absolutely hate switching gears! Reason why I buy new phones only when my old one completely breaks. I’m somewhat emotionally attached to it, feels like letting go to a part of me . Every time I get a new phone I behave with it as if it is an intruder ; I completely ignore it until it rings . Same goes with a new PC / laptop . As I’m writing this post I’m still trying to bring my old phone to life by keeping it plugged in – maybe it will charge in the end, who knows? You just don’t bury someone until you are absolutely sure that that person is dead for good. And for this absolute reason I can count on one hand all the phones that I had in my entire life – so far.

In between

Writing is the answer

For me writing seems to be the answer to everything. It helps clear out my mind and sort out my feelings. I’m already writing an ongoing journal for the past 10 years or so. I like my privacy and I never considered to write for an audience – I do it strictly for myself and for my own benefit -reason why I write on LiveJournal for so many years. I really love the option of writing my posts public, friends only or private. Some of the posts are friends only and I have a hand full of close people that are able to read them ; but most of them are private, of course.

Now that I was somehow convinced to write a public blog , I believe that there are beautiful experiences that I can share with an audience. There are also many subjects that I can write about and some people might find them useful – or so I was told. Even if I write about beautiful experiences I do it from a very personal point and I feel like keeping them for myself only and not share with everyone…I do not know why but this is how I function. So every post that I write here it will be made with a lot of effort . But yet again writing things down is very important to be, it has become like a coping mechanism. I’ve been writing since an early age , I own every single diary and every single notebook that I ever wrote.