Feb 1: Cirque Du Soleil - Corteo
Feb 14: Valentine's Day
March 31: Inside the World of Cheese Class
April 1: April Fools & Ali's Bday
May 1: May Day & My Bday
June 11: My Sisters Bridal Shower
July 4: 4th of July and Kevin's Bday
Aug 12: Lyndsey Gets Married
Sept 13: Lyndsey & Brian Visit after Honeymoon!
October 31: HALLOWEEN
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rachel at phoenixfeather.net
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September 04, 2005
A Lame Duck Rallye

Kevin, Athena and I did a car rallye tonight. The theme was "A Series of Unfortunate Events" and while the rallye was really not a very good one it did ring true for one unwilling participant.

Violet the duck never planned on being in a car rallye tonight, but some unfortunate event landed her in the middle of a 4 lane busy street that just happened to be part of the rallye route.

We don't know what was wrong with her. We think she had a broken leg and wing and was bleeding from somewhere, but we just aren't sure. Kevin noticed her as we drove by and when she turned her head realized she was still alive.

So back we went, got her safely to the side of the road and eventually in a blanket and on the way to a clinic that the police said would take her. We made a donation at the clinic and took the number with us so we can give a call to check in on her.

The thing is, even though she was in the road, Violet's injuries didn't look like she had been hit by a car. Athena thought possibly some animal got to her. It was horribly nerve wracking, but I'm glad we happened by in time. Or at least I hope it was in time.

After dropping off violet we finished the rallye and came in second place in our division.

What a night!

12:05 AM | Comments (7)
July 17, 2005
Domestics , Life , Love , Photography

Today was a really good day. Itís hard to explain the feeling of just well pure content that I have right now. I'm not sure if I've ever felt this good and its for no other reason than a good day with Kevin.

A good morning (if you know what I mean) and we actually got up at a decent time and decided to go out. Often weekends we bum around too much in the morning and then get frustrated when we have to rush to get anything done (I really wish stores operated on Rachel time instead of closing so early).

Anyway we went to view an open house for some condos made by the same builder who is putting the houses in across the street from us. We wanted to see the quality. While yes, they do still have that "exactly the same as the rest" kind of feel, the quality is pretty good.

On the way to open house we saw a sign for an estate sale and decided to stop after. We had so much fun! I had that odd nostalgia feeling for people I had never met. The place felt and smelled like grandparents (well great grandparents to me - I have a young family and still have a great grandmother alive at 89 or 90 years old I think). It just felt so like visiting my great grandparents - it was good. We bought several things
- some tailored suit coats that fit Kevin perfectly and were very nice
- a beautiful red dress my mother might be able to wear at my sisters wedding
- a great green bow tie complete with shamrock and Irish pipe
- and a lawn gnome
Kevin had a very hard time passing up an old eight track player with cassette converter. I love him for wanting it, I love him more for passing it up anyway. ;)

We picked up food and decided it was time for our third trip to Patio World to look at furniture for the back yard. Third trip because so far things had been coming out close to right, but never quite what we wanted - however recently having visited another store we changed our mind about stone vs. wood and decided to see what we could find with our new perspective. It worked; we found exactly the right table and chairs. I'll post a link later.

Returning him I was thrilled to find that B&H Photo had decided to send me (well and phoenixfeather) a 700 pg catalog of things I could buy. This is my new bible, I fawn and drool just looking at it. I think Kevin is getting jealous. Jealousy or not we put it too good use as we knew there were a few things we needed for traveling, specifically better traveling bags for our equipment. So we went to Keeble and Shuchat, picked out the pieces we liked best for our needs and then went back to the car to check prices on those items at B&H. We are saving so much money doing it there, and we still got to see the bags in person first. Prolly not fair to K&S - but we do also buy from them at times so it shouldn't be too horrible.

Kevin and I did a little more shopping and then had lemonade at a cafe and talked through our to do list for the week. It was nice and relaxing and refreshing and productive. Those words don't often seem to go together.

Home again we vegged. Did some research, ordered Thai food, watched a ton of Sex in the City episodes while also doing a little work on our computers. We have been sitting here side by side most of the night, computers on laps, discussing our activities (Kevin has been playing poker and winning a lot - thank you someone for paying for the new patio furniture. I'm updating old photo albums into the format and working on a dynamic archive).

Its been a wonderful evening sitting here. Some times I feel like the computers cut us off from each other. For that reason we have purposly had them in the living room less and less. Tonight it just worked.

So now I'm tired - its sleeping time. I just needed to share my content!

01:55 AM | Comments (1)
July 13, 2005
Not feeling like my self much lately. Especially today. And way too many nightmares in the last few weeks.

*sighs* I'm really not happy.

11:59 AM | Comments (0)
June 30, 2005
New Sexy Grill
Gotta love it when they send the cute sexy guy to set up your grill!!!!!

*goes back to watch him finish*

03:41 PM | Comments (0)
June 27, 2005
Not Always A Deep Sleeper

USUALLY I'm a very deep sleeper. Good luck waking me up once I'm out, especially if I'm in my own bed and I'm thinking hey, life is good. If you do manage to wake me up from my deep deep sleep HOPE you don't wake me up while I'm dreaming, cause even if I'm awake it is most likely that the dream is still hanging on. I will start saying odd things and then get very mad at you when you won't act as I think you should in my dream and not help me find the labels to the cans or something strange like that.

All that said (which really has very little to do with the rest of this post) I was woken up several times last night. Starting at 4:30am when both Kevin and I woke up at the same instant and I sat straight up.

There had been and odd noise in the house. It sounded a bit like running water to me. It shouldn't have been enough to wake me up, my brain should of said it was Kevin in the bathroom, except Kevin was still next to me and awake now too. The odd thing about his running water sound was not that it was more of a dribble of water, but that it was starting and stopping. After the sitting up in bed it stopped though.

Kevin and I looked at each other for a minute and then I got up and went to the bathroom. I turned on the light and scanned the room. I stood there staring at the bathroom for a good minute, knowing something was wrong here but not putting my figure on it, till.... and I burst out laughing.

Miss Nym, though not present had left behind her mark. Nym has a long fishing pool like play toy which she loves for us to whip around for us. This toy normally resides downstairs unless brought up by one of us. But there it was laying on our bathroom floor with the feathered end curled in such a way that said kitty had been dragging it along by he soft end heading toward the shower/tub area around the corner, as the plastic handle dragged along the tile floor. Hollow plastic as it jumps in and out of the grout creaks making a tinkling noise much like water.

I don't know what had gotten in to her, she normally plays in the downstairs bathtub. But whatever, I laughed and went back to bed.

Last night, I had hoped that my story would end here, but it was not to be I found out about an hour later. I swear to you I'm a heavy sleeper! Yes I do occasionally wake up when Nym has successfully taken over my pillow and there is no longer anything but my arm under my head, but she usually has to work me slowly off the pillow before this happens. Not last night though.

Last night at 5:30am I woke up with enough of a start that Kevin also woke up. Still laying down I turned my head and looked up and came face to face with Miss Nym. No, she was not doing her normal curl up on my pillow and eventually takes it over. She was just sitting there, right up against my head, looking down at me sleeping. And now I was looking up at her and Kevin was looking at us both and well... it was 5:30 in the morning!

Eventually I just swept her off my pillow so maybe I could go to sleep.

I know I woke up one or two more times early this morning. I know those times were also Nym related even though I don't remember them.

11:53 PM | Comments (0)
Life , Photography
Anxious, anxious, waiting, anxious, waiting..... *sighs*

*revised* no more waiting... oh well... next time maybe.

10:23 AM | Comments (0)
May 05, 2005
Lip Vs. Tongue
Health , Life

Yeah, I'm having a really really hard time trying to figure out which is my lower lip and which is my tongue. Its really hard. Also, itching is really hard, I can feel the itch on my chin but when i try to itch it i can't really feel it anymore. Really strange... *sighs* so far still so good though. Numb hasn't worn off yet, my mouth is still huge!

So far no drugs... that won't last... but we shall see.

01:33 PM | Comments (0)
Fingers Not Swollen
Health , Life

My tongue is HUGE! My entire lower lip and cheeks and chin and neck all feel puffy and not real. But my fingers are fine so I can post. Apparently I'm short 4 teeth, but they threw them out before I could see them.

Oddly I feel mostly fine. I have a little bit of a headache and my mouth is rather dry. We have found a way to get a little water down with a turkey injector but so far I can't make my mouth do much so that I could really drink or eat jello or anything. It will come back eventually. And I'm sure when it does there will be more pain than I'm in right now.

I do get a bit of saliva caught in the front of my mouth and have a hard time getting it to the back to swallow. Oh and my arm hurts from the IV.

I could hear the doctors gossiping at the end of the procedure. I knew they were doing things with my mouth and they were talking about people and their SO's and how stupid people can be, but I don't remember details.

Anyway, thats all for now. Going to watch a movie for a while. Maybe doze off or something. Hopefully eat some jello soon.

I wish I could say la la la, but i don't think I can move my tongue that way.

More updates later....

11:41 AM | Comments (7)
May 04, 2005
Wisdom Teeth Away...
Health , Life

I'm finally having my wisdom teeth taken out tomorrow. I'm just barely on the calm side of terrified.

I have been told since I was a teenager that I would need to lose them. The structure of my mouth is tiny. During my braces years I had to use the key gear that slowly breaks the roof of your mouth and re-heals it slightly larger. I did this twice. Even after that they still had to use size 0 appliances and bend them inward to fit my mouth. My dentist was just happy to make my mouth big enough that my wisdom teeth could come in if not stay.

A some point I made the attempt to have the teeth removed, but when I met the doctor at the consultation I wanted to run and hide he was so mean. I canceled the procedure.

During my grad school years my wisdom teeth were hurting a bit coming in still and so I made the attempt again. However since I was in school and still on my parents insurance and since in Pittsburgh was out of network, so the bill was horrible. They refused to cover my anesthesiologist which was around $500 plus whatever they didn't cover in the doctor fees... well it was way too much for a grad student to pay. Yet again no removal.

Finally I think we are good. I like the doctor he was quite nice. I know the insurance will deal with most of this bill.

So no more excuses, its time to do it. But I'm still terrified. Though on the upside the doctor thinks I can still make it to the preview of Serenity tomorrow night. I really hope it works out, it will be a good distraction.

*quivers in my boots*

05:54 PM | Comments (2)
April 22, 2005
Big Plans

So I haven't been that talky lately. Truth is I've been awfully busy and while I keep thinking about things to post, I rarely get time. Right now I'm in the middle of hanging out with Kevin in our down time and watching an episode of Sex In The City, but the phone interrupted us and now I'm waiting, so I'm using the time.

While I'm not posting much in words, the photos are still coming. I'm actually about to post (as in by monday) some of my most recent Nym photos and I was feeling all up to date on my pictures taken to pictures posted ratio and then I looked my photography plans for the next couple weeks:
- Visiting a friend of Kevin's Los Gatos Bird farm.
- Some planned photos with Athena and a really cool vintage dress I found in a consignment shop in SF last weekend.
- Sonoma wildflowers with Fred and Malaya.
- Birthday trip to NYC
- Birthday visit home - Bloomfield in the spring!
- Cyrus & Athena's wedding
- Max's second birthday

And that just gets me to mid-may. I have a wisdom tooth extraction happening in the middle of all that. So that will at least give me some good photo processing time. Gah! Can you say backlog city!!!!

All worth it though. And I have even more cool stuff lined up this summer too!!

Okay, I'm going to drag Kevin back to the TV for some more r&r!!

09:35 PM | Comments (2)
March 25, 2005
So Much To Write... SO MUCH!!!

I know i've been slacking here. Way too much has been going on.

I'm overwhelmed and not sure where to start yet or how to start. I will do it this weekend, I promise.

In the meantime a new easterish album will be going up a little later today complete with an easter background. And then this Sunday is Kevin and I's annual Easter in the Cemetery so you will get this years easter egg albums soon.

Till then, just check out the last two years! 2003 2004


02:06 PM | Comments (0)
February 10, 2005
Roly Poly Fish Heads
Life , Randomness

I think its just one of those days...

In yoga class this afternoon I was balancing in one pose or another when I heard a little girl giggling and kind of talking somewhere near by. It was just like my dream this morning again, and yet it still felt different. There was a little girl leaving the daycare room next door to our classroom. I could hear her through the glass wall just behind me... it was so similar and yet not. I can't explain it...

In other oddities, I stopped at the store on the way home to pick up a few supplies for a photo shoot I'm doing for Mark's food magazine. In my shopping cart:
A King Sized Butterfingers Bar
And Two Rather Large Salmon Heads!

Thats right , 2 fish heads are now in my fridge. They are really rather large and they kind of freaky. I'm a bit weird-ed out by them and I hope I don't have any dreams with dead fish eyes staring at me!

02:49 PM | Comments (1)
Or Maybe It's A Dream...
Life , Randomness

I woke up slowly this morning, kind of drifting in and out of sleep and dream as I knew that the alarm would be going off anytime.

As I was drifting in and out I noticed that as I was kind of asleep I was having a fairly basic dream - nothing that interesting, but it was there. When I was drifting toward wakefulness I kept hearing a child, a little girl who was talking or playing. I figured that Kevin was watching something on TV or some video on his computer or something. It was always the same for about 20 minutes as I shifted in and out of consciousness.

Finally my curiosity got me to get up. I wanted to see what Kevin was doing. I heard the child in the distance again and then it stopped and I got up.

I walked to the hallway and looked into Kevin's office, but he wasn't there. I didn't hear the child anymore and I was a bit groggy and confused. I called out to Kevin and got no answer. Walked downstairs and looked around, nothing was out of order but there was no TV or anything to produce the sound of a small girls voice. And Kevin had already left for work.

I have no clue where the sound came from, I guess it was another dream and I was just switching back and forth between dreams. So very strange!

11:18 AM | Comments (2)
January 17, 2005
Cars Are Pets Too!!
Air , Life , Love

For the last week I've been having a hard time looking at my poor little car in the driveway, all banged up and crushed and violated. But she was still in the driveway so it was okay.

My car's name is Guinevere and even though she is about 11 years old she is still young at heart. I learned to drive on her, she spent some time at school with me, she took me to see long distance boyfriends, and to live and work in NH, MA and PA and all over the place.

I took off to see the country and spend some time on my own, but she was there with me, all the way to Utah and back to NY and everywhere in between. She got some great parallel parking experience in Pittsburgh, and then she drove Nym and I all the way out to the bay area. She helped me begin to learn this new area, she was always there.

She has had her problems, but whenever I sit down in her its like coming home. She is part of me, an extension, my wings!!

I love Gwen and I can't imagine walking outside and not seeing her there in the driveway or the parking lot or whatever. I don't like the idea that I will never sit in her again. She is my pet and my friend. I know she is just a car, a piece of metal, but she is mine and tomorrow she will be gone.

:( :( :(

Bye Gwen, I will miss you more than ever I thought would. Sometimes love just sneaks up on you.

06:13 PM | Comments (1)
January 11, 2005
A Lovely Day
Earth , Life

On the upside: Today is Kevin and I's 2 year anniversary since we met. Happy Anniversary sweety.

On the downside: On the on-ramp waiting for a break in traffic to merge onto the Oregon expressway another guy came down the on-ramp behind me in his SUV too fast and straight into my trunk. Thats right folks the SUV's bumper which is higher than mine went right over my bumper and crunched my trunk right up; detached the back of my car from the bumper. *sighs* No one was hurt other than being a bit shook up, maybe some whiplash, but I think it will be okay.

How did his SUV fare you ask? yeah, a couple scratches and a little paint from my car.

*grumble grumble grumble*

look at that, my trunk is being detached from my bumper *sighs*
08:10 PM | Comments (4)
October 26, 2004
Posting Delay
Blogging , Life

I feel like I'm neglecting this blog... I do have things to say... I have the whole Baja trip story to tell... its a good one. However I'm holding off for two reasons:

1. I want to coincide the story with the photos going up. I now have only one small photo album left of the Carmel trip before I can choose what my next series will be. There may be a halloween or house photo album insert before the trip, or I might just jump right into the trip, I haven't decided yet.

2. We have a new house, and we have to be out of our old house by the 31st. The washer and dryer are being delivered today and there is packing and cleaning and unpacking galore that has been keeping me busy and away from the blog.

I do promise a cool story coming up complete with beautiful sunsets, white sand beaches, amazing animals, close encounters of the poisonous kind and even PIRATES!!

Stay tuned!

09:49 AM | Comments (0)
October 19, 2004
Earth , Life
Movers tomorrow!!!!! gaaaaaaakkkkkkk!!!!! *sighs*
06:24 PM | Comments (4)
October 08, 2004
Woo Hoo...

housey, housey, housey, housey..... *bounces* and runs over to the new house to lay on the floor!! weeeee....

01:14 PM | Comments (2)
October 05, 2004
PhoenixFeather Weekly Headlines
Blogging , Life

New Refrigerator Makes An Entrance
We ran all around last night and we finally picked a new fridge which is hopefully being installed on Friday. Woo hoo... This is what it looks like. The only difference between ours and this one is that we didn't get the water filter.

Cat Lounges In Tree - No Firemen Needed
Nym has been a good girl... the feliway air fresheners have drugged our cat into kitten like happiness. Sooo... there has been this scratching post/play ground for kitty that I have been wanting for years. Its shaped like a tree. So has a bribe/treat for being good we got it for Nym. We thought her having it before the move would make the move easier since she would get there and see something that was hers. She adores this thing. Once we showed it to her, she began sitting in it almost non-stop. She almost doesn't sit on the couches with us anymore. It is really the cutest thing ever!!!

This Is Not A Medical Blog
I had a random blood vessel burst last week. It looks so very pretty... many colors and oh so big. People have told me that I should have been posting pictures. I decided I might scare my readers away if I keep grossing you all out with the evil things my body is doing. So I've told you... you don't get to see!! *grin*

Travel: Outdoor Adventures In Baja California
Next Tuesday Kevin and I are leaving for Mexico. Its off to Baja california to Kayak and camp and snorkel in the sea of Cortez. I have ordered a very pretty underwater camera. I'm excited about this trip. I've been working out trying to get in shape for this trip, I've been working hard, but I don't know if it worked. I guess I'll find out next week. I'm so so so so excited!

Coming Up On October 8th: The House That Kevin Bought
We are almost there... pictures and details to come!!!

05:48 PM | Comments (3)
September 24, 2004
I'll Take Things That Have Absolutly Nothing to Do With Each Other for $1000 Alex!
Air , Life , Night Life

Yesterday was an interesting and varied day.

We started with a 10.2 mile bike ride. Normally this is lots of fun however the day before I had pushed myself taking a pilates class immediately followed by a Kickboxing class. It was good but at the same time when I got out on the bike ride the next morning I was still feeling weak. My muscles weren't hurting or anything, I just wasn't back up to full strength yet. I'm a weakling. But I was already out so I pushed and got through it. I wasn't feeling that great though, so I skipped my plans to use the rowing machine and such, I rested on the couch for a while but still ventured to Yoga.

YOGA IS GREAT!! I went hoping that even though I was feeling weak, that some good stretching would relax my muscles so I could then relax the rest of the afternoon. It more than worked, my muscles relaxed and rejuvenated. I left feeling stronger and ready to go.

Body problems over for the time being I ran a couple errands. It will be a little while before we buy new furniture for the new house. We need to save some money and really figure out what we want. In the meantime, my love-seat is an UGLY-ASS thing. I picked up a wonderful faux-suede slipcover. It doesn't look spectacular now, but it looks much much nicer and it feels so good to sit on. It will be a huge improvement for the time being, I'm happy.

While at Target getting the slip cover, I was reminded of one of my weaknesses. HALLOWEEN!! All the halloween goods are coming out. Oh, its my favorite holiday and I can go crazy. We had a great costume idea for this year, however we don't have the extra time or money with all the move. So costume stored until next year. I am determined though to create a creepy graveyard in my front garden before halloween to entice trick-or-treaters. I LOVE HALLOWEEN.

Home with lunch and a little relaxation I was a happy girl. Just before 4 pm I went over to google for a lecture on being a homeowner as an investment. It was interesting, but I was still a bit tired and my mind drifted.

One of my favorite things about Google is the massage chair in the lobby of building 41. Kevin took 20 minutes to finish up a few things (oh yeah, he let me drive the Prius all day!! *grin*), so I sat down at the massage chair and relaxed. The massage chair is a wonder... it does a better job than any non-human massage device I've ever tried. It was a nice 20 minutes.

Done at Google, we hopped a train into the city for a baseball game!! I have missed baseball, there is something magical about baseball. The stadium, the lights, the smells. the green of the field, the hats and jersey's everywhere, hot dogs!! Cheers and songs.

It was a good game. The Giants vs. the Astros. Now the problem is we lost... not good. The Giants are in second place in our division, and of course the LA Dodgers, our rivals are in first. The Dodgers were playing at the same time and only ahead by half a game. So not only were we hoping for a win, but also for LA to lose. LA won, we lost... grrr... but still a wonderful evening. AND we are still in contending for the wild card slot into the playoffs, so we are still doing well, and I'm planning on seeing another game or two this season!

Back on the train and on the way home after a long day. We read and relaxed. At one point during the the ride a child's jean jacket dangled down above Kevin's head and swung around. It's like a cat with a string, its so hard to ignore. Kevin and I tried not to do anything, till Kevin couldn't take it anymore and 'quick of a fox' snatched it out of the air. And then dutifully held the jacket up in the air for the 5 year-old little girl to take back. She was having a grand time and during the course of the ride we were not his only victims.

Long night, happy times, good sleep!! Yay!!

02:56 PM | Comments (0)
September 22, 2004
Remember "the Move"
Fire , Life , Ponderances

Do you remember "the Move" - I remember "the Move" and right this moment I am remembering it even more.

Why am I choosing to remember "the Move" right now you might ask? Well it would be because we are moving again, and I am again on the hunt for movers.

Now, we aren't sure we are going to use movers yet, we might have them do it all, we might have them just do the furniture and we will do the boxes ourselves... or maybe we will just do it ourselves (my back doesn't like that idea). No matter what the verdict we are moving, its coming up quick and there are lots of decisions to make. I'm just a little afraid of having another mover's scandal.

Where are you moving Rachel? Oh yeah, well Kevin and I haven't talked about it too much yet, for escrow reasons we have been observing a kind of "quite period", however contingency period is almost up and I think we are about ready to talk about it. I will tell you all that Kevin has bought us the most amazing house, I'm in love!!! (With the house, I was already in love with Kevin before that!). We are in escrow, we should close on October 8th and then we will be moving about 8 minutes away to a new sanctuary in Sunnyvale. We won't be that far from Cy and Athena.

The house is really amazing, and I'll give you all the run-down soon... for now, I have one more mover to call tomorrow. This one is recommended which makes me feel better... lets just hope that they won't want to completely rob us blind.

*develops a nervous twitch*

12:37 AM | Comments (4)
September 08, 2004
Body Work
Earth , Health , Life

I'm so very proud of myself... not only did I go to my Kickboxing class today, and feel like I was doing better in the class, but I also did an additional half hour on the rowing machine after class!! Yeah me! I still need to tell you all about the trip I'm getting in shape for... that will come this week.

On the flip side of body work, my stomach has continued to have issues. They have been minimal since the lovely weekend I had, but prior to that and a little bit since I have had continued issues. I called my doctor last week and she wants me to have a endoscopy next week. So next Tuesday they will be sticking a little camera tube down my throat to look at my stomach. I go for a consultation tomorrow. It shouldn't be too bad I hope. Kevin wants to video my insides and blog them. I just want to feel better. We shall see how it all turns out.

06:08 PM | Comments (2)
August 19, 2004
This Is Not My Beautiful House
Air , Domestics , Life

I have been cleaning and organizing our house for weeks now. Kevin moved into this town house about a year ago and I moved in not long after. We have spent most of the year without even really unpacking.

Finally this summer, with a lot of help from Ali I got started on cleaning and organizing the bedroom and then a good start on the living/dining room. After that great start, there ended up being a stack of boxes with semi organized contents stacked in the dining room, the hallway and the office. And the office had yet to be touched.

I managed to ignore this for a while and our world continued to be incomplete. Finally, in my recent urge to try and take control of my world attacked the house. I started this week by organizing the closet in the office and continued by organizing the contents of all the boxes, and creating a livable space. I ordered some really cool filing cabinets as well as a great drafting table.

We haven't gotten the filing part down yet, but i have created a work space for myself as well as a house that doesn't look like we just moved in and isn't full of boxes. Kevin was a huge help last night in the final throws of cleaning. I have a really great sense of completion. ;)

Its amazing... I almost don't believe this is the house I live in!

Woo hoo... I made the house clean, organized and a happy place to live! Now lets look for a new house!!

PS: oh yeah... and I served my first dinner in my nice clean house tonight. Here is the menu, drool away:

Rachel's Special Butternut Squash Soup w/ Goat Cheese
German Marinated Pork Roll
Mini Warm Chocolate Fudge Cakes with Raspberry topping and Raspberries

mmm mmm good!!

10:38 PM | Comments (3)
July 12, 2004
Looking on the Bright Side of Life
Fire , Life , Love , music

On the up side...

Kevin and I saw Sarah McLachlan Saturday night. It was exactly the kind of calming beautiful evening I needed.

We sat about 30 seats back at the Berkeley Greek Theatre. The evening was a little cool, but we had sweatshirts and a blanket. The night was beautiful and throughly enjoyed the stars and the sky above us. I only wish I were laying on a hill for this concert.

When I was in high school I used to go to concerts at the Finger Lakes Community Arts Center. I never bought actual seats, I always sat on the lawn. The nice thing at FLCC was that they let you bring a picnic. But the best part really was having a blanket and the sky above me. I could dance if I wanted to, or I could lay on my back and stare at the sky and let the music just rush over me like water.

Good music and a clear sky are two of the most wonderful things in life. I'm considering tickets to see Norah Jones and for that one I will get lawn seats. I don't need to sit in a chair. In fact I'm often against chairs. And I'm very much against being crowded into a little space. I don't need to see the artists face, yeah its quite cool to be up close, but what is really want is just to hear their voice and the instruments and let it all soak into my skin.

Last night (the 11th) was Kevin and I's 1.5 anniversary. Silly I know... but I'm a hopeless romantic. We had a beautiful evening. I picked up some food and we had a picnic at Google and watched the Space Station pass over us on its revolution. Then we drove down to Redwood city to catch site of a Iridium Flare. The flare was pretty cool.

On our way home we tried to find a coffeehouse that we could have a nice drink and play some card games at, but nothing stays open late anymore. Its very sad!!

Overall two nights in a row that were more relaxing than stressful.

I love my boyfriend! And I love life! Ups and downs and everything. :)

10:44 PM | Comments (0)
On Edge
Family , Life , Water

So I'm getting my thoughts and feeling out, both bad and good. Lets start with the downside and get it over with.

Kevin's sister Susie or his mother call a little two close together or at an odd time and my blood pressure jumps up a few notches. Kevin's does too, I can see it. Sometimes it happens when the phone rings even before I know who it is. Kevin answers, everything turns out to be okay and tears run down my face. I can't help it, its a release of emotions I don't know how to deal with.

I'm on edge all the time. In the back of my mind I see any nice moment, anything that I'm enjoying, and I know it can collapse at any time. I know its supposed to be over with. The funeral is over, life should be going back to normal, and hopefully it will soon. But a year ago it was supposed to be over with as well. I guess I shouldn't expect it to be over, its life it doesn't just stop cause I'm tired.

So I'm ploughing on, but just about anything can make me jump out of my skin at this point.

10:03 PM | Comments (0)
July 09, 2004
Back In My Own Bed
Family , Life , Travel , Water

We have returned!

I am so happy to be home. I slept soundly all night last night for the first time in weeks. Between changing beds every few days and stress and worry it no wonder neither Kevin nor I has slept well. I have gotten into the habit of whenever I toss and turn between 6am and 8am that I just get up. For some of you thats not early, but I'm not a morning person. This morning however I didn't get out of bed till 11!! I'm still tired, but I feel like I have actually gotten some rest. I can see the light at the end of the tunnel.

So what has been going on in the last week? Well here it is:

We had planned 5 day trip with 17 members of the Fox family to Kevin's Uncle Alan's house on Brown Island (Brown Island is a small island in the bay of Friday Harbor, in San Juan island off the coast of Seattle Washington). With everything going on this was a trip and a chance for a break, rest and relaxation that Kevin, Carolyn, Susie and I really needed and yet it was very hard to make the decision to go and when to go.

Go on time, leave early, go late, many plots and plans were made. Grandma Kitty was finally put on a morphine drip and went into a coma. We decided to go ahead and keep in close touch with those at home. We left on the morning of July 2nd, as we sat down for lunch Carolyn received the phone call that Grandma Kitty had passed. We were able to stay on the island since the holiday weekend postponed the funeral until July 8th.

The island was wonderful, many many pictures will be going up. Two albums from the fourth of July parade are already up; the fireworks are following in a day or so.

While on the island we went on walks, stalked deer, dragonflies and butterflies, shopped, cooked, ate, read, laid around, got on the boat, grounded the boat, visited a lavender farm and a sculpture garden, shopped, cooked, ate, read, laid around, saw the fireworks and the parade. Really just relaxed and spent time with the Fox family.

We celebrated Kevin's birthday with homemade eggs benedict in bed, which is his family's tradition, made by his mother, sister and I. We rode a scootercar, and did 4th of July things. Being away we were able to escape some of the outside issues and enjoy his birthday somewhat. I still plan to have some kind party for him sometime in the future, but I'm happy to say that in the midst of a lot of saddness and loss, a few moments of happiness were possible.

We changed our return flight and flew down to LA on Wendesday with everyone else so that we would be there for the visiting hours that evening the funeral a 1pm on Thursday.

The service was beautiful. A professional singer friend of Carolyn's sang during the service, Kevin and I made a photographic slide show set to music performed by his cousin Janice and Carolyn's Sweet Adeline group sang at the grave site as well. It was a celebration of her life with music and photographs and many friends and family around.

Kevin's Aunt Joanne remarked afterward that there weren't a lot of tears. I don't mean there were none, it just wasn't a mass of people crying. I think that most of us had already said goodbye to Grandma Kitty, she had been leaving us for a while and towards the end she wasn't really there anymore. The service was a beautiful tribute to her life, but I know I had already cried most of my tears, there weren't many left in me. I don't mean to make it sound unfeeling or uncaring, I think its just that when a death is long and drawn out the funeral is almost as much a relief that things are over as they are a celebration and closing of a beautiful life.

Anyway, I'm looking forward getting back to normal life, and sleep with many less worries. I know that the memory of Grandma Kitty will live on in the minds and hearts of many.

03:42 PM | Comments (4)
July 05, 2004
Some Rest and Relaxation
Life , Travel , Water

So here is a update on my life:

Grandma Kitty passed away the morning of July 2nd. We are currently in Brown Island (as has been planned for months) and will be returning to LA directly from here on Wednesday. The funeral will take place Thursday morning and we will return to our home Thursday evening. Please send your love and wishes to Kevin and Carolyn and the rest of the family Thursday morning. Just a moment of thought or a special hug for your own Grandmother will do.

In other news, we are having a lovely and relaxing time in Brown Island. Where is Brown Island do you say? Well, Brown Island (also known as Friday Island) is a tiny residential island (only about 40 houses) located in Friday Harbor just off San Juan Island near the coast of Seattle Washington. Does that answer your question?

We are hear on a woodsy island near a nice small town just relaxing and enjoying life for a little while with about 15 other members of the Fox family. I am currently sitting on a very cozy couch in a wonderful sitting room which is open into what is incredibly close to my ideal kitchen. This HUGE beautiful kitchen has been my playground for the past few days while I got to make basically whatever I wanted for an adoring family who just loved that I was cooking. Unfortunately I didn't come prepared for this so it was a lot of off the top of my head while I walked through the market meals. But next time I will be prepared.

In addition to cooking I have taken a couple nature walks on the island, stalked a deer, putted along on a scooter car, attended the towns 4th of July parade (nice and small and reminded me of home), enjoyed a wonderful fireworks display sitting only about 300 feet from the barge that set them off: it was amazing, celebrated Kevin's birthday, did some shopping, jutted around on the boat and did a lot of nothing!!!!! This is a wonderful wonderful place.

I have pictures to last me for weeks and so you will begin seeing new albums coming in quickly I hope. The first may be today or tomorrow!

The only downside to this trip so far is that the spiders are still stalking me. The spiders we are finding at home have been getting bigger and bigger, but that have yet compared to the one I found in our bathtub this morning. Gak!!

Anyway, I hope you have all been having a lovely 4th weekend, more to come soon.

05:07 PM | Comments (6)
May 24, 2004
So Much To Do! SO MUCH!!!
Earth , Friends , Life

Happy Birthday Ammy!!!

She can't see this at the moment because she is gone on a road trip. Having a great time I'm hoping and scattering a few Random Pixel cameras as she goes.

And while Ammy and Rick are away Nym and I will play. Kevin is being wonderful and is giving living with my cat a try while Ammy is away. He isn't on any medications yet, but we have over-the-counter Claritin on hand just in case.

Having Nym in the house during the day is really nice. The house doesn't feel as lonely. I should be here a lot this week since I'm really working hard on getting the photography business website up in the next few days. That's a reminder that you need to change your bookmarks over to http://blog.phoenixfeahter.net

In other news, we had a great weekend. Ammy had a birthday party on Friday which was lots of fun. Saturday Kevin and I did stuff around the house, picked up Nym and saw Shrek 2 which, while nothing like the first Shrek was really fun.

Sunday we slept in and then went into the City to meet up with Ali and Mark. We took a walk up to Coit Tower with them and a couple of their friends from high school. Then as their friends headed out on the road we hoofed it all over the city. Seeing the sites and taking pictures.

Throughly exhausted the four of us to BART up to Berkeley where we had Baja Fresh for dinner. With our energy replenished we headed over to see the Dido in concert. The show started late and was a bit short. But it was a great concert. I enjoy singers who tell you about how their lives effect their music.

Later that night, finally home, we collapsed in bed and slept the sleep of those whose feet know the San Francisco hills. So all in all it was a good weekend and I am projecting a good forecast for the week ahead. :)

09:18 PM | Comments (0)
May 01, 2004
Happy Birthday To Me!!!!
Fire , Life

Thats all, just Happy Birthday to me!!! I'm a may day baby!!! Woo hoo!!!
In addition happy birthday to Suzie and Dawn!

11:27 AM | Comments (5)
April 27, 2004
A Real Californian?!
Life , Water

My NY drivers license expires on my bday this Saturday. I have known this for a while and that I need to be a legal California resident, I just haven't done it. I think I'm such a gypsy that this is an odd concept to grasp. Since graduating from high school I have lived in 3 other states (PA, MA, NH) besides New York, but it has always been either educational, or a short enough stay (3 months) that I didn't need residency.

Now that I'm in CA with no real plans to leave right away, I suppose its time to get to that CA license thing. So now I'm studying for my written exam. That feels so very weird - I haven't done this since I was 16.

Okay California driving law - Here I Come!!!

01:59 PM | Comments (4)
March 31, 2004
Mind Ramblings
Dancing , Health , Life , Love , Water

Tonight I took my first intermediate class at St. Stephen's Green Ceili dancing. It was fun, confusing but fun and I'm feeling good about my dancing progress. It was a good dancing evening though I didn't take too many pictures. Kevin was able to come for a little bit. I really do miss dancing with him; he has been too busy the last few weeks to go dancing much. Overall a good night!

Home now winding down from the evening. Weighing heavily on my mind right now is tomorrows doctors appointment. This will be my third breast exam in less than two months (if you don't know the story you can read it here).

I'm not sure what I think or feel about any of this anymore. Its not the worst it could be, it might be nothing, or something mild which could still call for removal. Who knows at this point, all that I do know is that I'm a ball of nerves. Not knowing is killing me as much as the possibility of knowing. Weird I know - but true. Anyway, tomorrow I see the doc again and we will see what happens.

I have to note how thankful I am for Kevin. When I spaz-out about one thing when this is really what bothers me, he figure it out and forgives me and holds me. He's also going with me tomorrow, he will mostly just be waiting for me, but just knowing a friendly face will be there after is one less worry.

In any case thank you to everyone who helped me learn new dances tonight; And wish me luck tomorrow.

12:18 AM
March 27, 2004
Yesterday & Today
Earth , Life , Love , Randomness

I'm laying on the couch bored right now. Normally I'm really good at entertaining myself, but I'm at a loss right now. So I'm going to ramble a bit.

First off, on a odd thing happened yesterday. I very simply walked to the mailbox, just barely down the complex road. You wouldn't think something odd could happen in that short time span, but it did - it was a douple ganger day and they were stalking me.

My first clue was the caw I heard, I looked for the crow who made it and found not one but two crows so cuddly together they almost looked like a two headed crow. I know what you are saying... silly Rachel, two black birds is no big deal. It was just funny as I just looked down from the birds and found two orange cats having a hissy fit just below. I said odd, not life shattering, work with me here folks.

So then today was a good day. Slow kind of lazy start Kevin and I eventually decided to go on a walk with our cameras. It was a nice walk... we were out for quite a while and took quite a few pictures. We went all along Castro St and circled along down the Central expressway, did some back streets, visited Ranstorff Park and then wandered home.

I LOVE spending the day with Kevin. We have so much fun just randomly wandering and doing whatever. We have our moments (And I'm really sorry I've been a bit stressed and sensitive lately hun!), but it was a wonderful day and its a wonderful life having a partner like him!!!

Oh, so also I/we are really excited! Tomorrow we are getting the new Nikon D70 Digital SLR camera. Really Kevin is getting it, but he is a cool boyfriend and shares. We held it today when we went to pick up some batteries and film for Kevin's current SLR camera. It was so pretty. So we called to check on the status of the one we had ordered, and it doesn't look like we will have it for at least 2 weeks minimum. So we are going back to the store around the corner and picking it up first thing tomorrow. I'm oh so excited.

Anyway, I guess thats all the babble from me for now. I'm sure I'll talk about more important things soon, I have some ideas on the burner.

See ya later kids!

09:28 PM
March 25, 2004
A Woman's Right
Health , Life , Politics , Water

This seems to be the topic of day in blogs I read. And its important so I feel the need to comment.

I am Pro-Choice because no one should be able to tell me what I can and can't do with my body. But besides that different situations call for different actions.

For example my friend DM recently made a post in her live journal about 3 women she knows (I know two of them); this is the short version of her post, but her long version is so so worth reading.

Woman 1: Recently had a baby at age 20. Is a very strict believer of all catholic practices and so never gave a thought to abortion. She dropped out of college, her parents took out a second mortgage. Her husband to be owns his own mortgage company and barely makes any money, so she and the baby are on welfare. She had planned to go back to school in a year, but it doesnít' look like it will be possible till the baby is in school, if then. They are planning to be married in May, but he makes excuses to say at work and she plays the house wife but sneaks in a drink here and there. And this poor baby though she has parents who love her also has parents who resent the life they are now forced to live.

Woman 2: Had a child who is the joy of her life. Her second child is being induced tomorrow and everyone is excited and happy. Her first child is healthy and happy. They may not be a perfect family, but itís a good life.

Woman 3: Recently had an abortion. It was a hard decision and against her catholic upbringing; however she and her boyfriend discussed it rationally and decided it was the best thing. They didnít believe it was something they were mentally or emotionally prepared to deal with. However she can never tell her mother because she would never have approved. She knows it was the right decision for her to make, but it was a very very hard one. She went through the procedure quite well and is going to be quite healthy.

Three women, three circumstances. Whether they made the right decisions can't really be judged. I don't think woman 1 did, but that is my point of view and may not be right. The point is that these three women are examples of the right to choose that they have as US citizens.

Blacksheep also posted today about abortion; this time about laws. The senate has now ruled to recognize "a fetus as a separate victim in cases involving pregnant women". This may not be a ruling to outlaw abortion but this will be used in cases to support the outlawing of abortion.

Abortion isn't right for everyone, but we live in a country that was created so its people could choose what they want to believe and practice. This should count for our bodies as well as our minds.

05:29 PM
March 21, 2004
Good Good Day!
Earth , Friends , Life , Spirit

A long long day, but oh so good.

Kevin and I went to Berkeley for the day. He had an eye doctors appointment at 10:30 and we also had a dinner and movie party at Emily's (in Hayward) at 7pm, so it made sense for us to spend the day hanging out in Berkeley. Yay!! Always fun.

So Kevin let them put things in his eyes and when they were done we picked out new glasses for him. He's so very cute in glasses... looks so smart. And then the day really began...

We started with exploring campus. Well, exploring for me, not so much for him since he graduated from Berkeley. There is still a lot that Kevin hasn't shown me, and he is ever so excited about sharing. So we wandered around and took pictures. I was proud of myself as I randomly identified a tree from a picture Kevin had taken years ago. After a while we got hungry and shared a panini sandwich from the Musical Offering restaurant; which was followed by browsing through Hot Topic, walking the Berkeley streets and smiling a lot.

We paused to view and photograph two boys playing metal music on their violin and cello. The boys weren't more than 20 years old and related (they have the same last name). Called Judgement Day; we enjoyed their music as well as the ability to photograph them so we gave a donation and were given a CD in return.

Their music wasn't bad. Technique was a little bit lacking, but their style was good. A lot of potential here and even more important a lot of spirit! I wish them luck.

After that we went to the Berkeley Hat Store. This store is my weakness! While I can rarely justify buying a hat, I do love them ever so much. This time however was not about me. While I had fun trying a few on, there were no hats that called to me. There was a hat that called to Kevin though. Kangaroo leather, squishy and very very cool. We walked some more and enjoyed a beautiful day. I took a bunch of pictures, which will be going up soon!

After Berkeley, we went over to Karen's to say hi, drop off some books, borrow her bike and visit for a bit. We gained a Paul there and soon headed over to Emily's for yummy Chinese food and to watch the Miyazaki movie "Laputa: Castle in the Sky". Dinner was wonderful and this was a great movie, though I had a hard time staying awake at the end. It had been a long day and it was catching up to me (didn't go to bed till almost 2am the night before).

Home at about midnight I happily climbed into bed and passed out; exhausted in body and mind!

01:15 PM
March 18, 2004
Meet the Kids
Family , Life , Spirit

We have 4 of them... and so what if they aren't human, we still love them.

Starting with Nym, she has been my sweet little kitty for almost 3 years now. Since moving to CA she has been living around the corner from us with Ammy and Rick. We are soon going to try Kevin on some allergy medicine and hopefully be able to keep her here. For now she occasionally comes to visit. Like today!

Then there is feeder. He is the smallest, but the next oldest pet. Let me explain that feeder the fish wasn't susposed to live. We bought him and two other feeder fish for 10 cents each on the suggestion of the pet store. The idea was to get something living in our new tank and create an eco system. Because they were cheap fish, it shouldn't matter if they died. Well out of the 3 we still have Feeder (named so since we didn't want to get too attached). We waited a while before getting new fish, figuring once Feeder went, we would get started with our tank. Well feeder has decided to hang around for about a month now, and we are attached now, so he better stay for at least a little while longer.

This brings me to our newest additions, Goldie and Usta. Goldie is the smaller of the two goldfish. Usta is the larger who has a white band around her lips (Usta means lips in polish). We picked these two cause they wanted to be together. They were in two different tanks with a tank in between them. But both fish kept swimming up against the inner walls seeing each other across the tanks and trying to get to each other. Or at least this is what we tell ourselves. We have reunited them, and they are happy.

So the fish have fun swimming and Nym has fun watching them and its all a great big happy family!!

05:08 PM
March 15, 2004
Who Am I?
Blogging , Life , Spirit

A little bit about the person writing this silly blog:

My name is Rachel Lea Fisher

Nicknames: I most often go by Rachel or Rachel Lea. I also answer to Rhea. I really don't like being called Rach or Ray, though if you spell the last one Ra I feel a bit more god like and its okay. :)

Where: I live in Mountain View CA with my wonderful boyfriend Kevin. We live in a great townhouse that has a beautiful garden that I now spend lots of time in. Down the street lives my Cat Nym, who will hopefully be coming to live with Kevin and I as soon as we can get him some medicine.

What: What am I and what do I do? Hmmm... well I have a BA in Speech Communications (backgrounds in Theatre, Computers and Philosophy) from Susquehanna University; I also have my Masters in Arts Management from Carnegie Mellon University.

Since graduating from CMU in May of 2003, I have been in search of a theatre management job (development, marketing, events planning, general management) in the San Francisco bay area, or elsewhere if need be.

In the meantime, I'm playing at being part-time photographer. You can see my photos in the In Pictures... section of my site.

Why: Because life is fun!!!

Want to ask me a question? Please do!

05:34 PM
Good Morning
Blogging , Life , Spirit

Hello and welcome to Phoenix Feather web log: In Words...

Its taken me quite a while, but I have finally gotten my very own blog set up!!! (With lots of help from Kevin. He is wonderful)

I don't know if everything I write will be great and interesting, but please come and read and chat with me. It will be fun!

Overall life is odd, interesting and sometimes crazy - if for no other reason, come here to laugh a bit while I tell the story of my life. *grin*

See you all soon!

04:26 PM