Monday, June 10, 2013

A new start

I am nearly to the end of my current journey.  I believe I did all that I could in my marriage and now with it nearly finished, there is a beginning on the horizon.

If you haven't read the first two parts of the three part series click the following links... Unrecognizable Part 1, Part 2.

© Kristin Corlett

It came over me like a fog, penetrating every fiber of my being, but so quietly that I didn't have any idea until I was completely overcome.  My time spent with Steve, the man I took to Dialysis three times a week, the grocery store trips, the hours of laughing and telling stories... he became my closest friend.   I realized that the moment I made the decision to leave my marriage was when that fog began rolling in.  All of the spaces that I was clearing out were being filled again.  The fog was love.  When I finally realized I had fallen in love with Steve it was like I had been pushed over a cliff.  It was a total free fall.

I didn't want to end one relationship just to dive into another.  No, no no!  It went against everything I thought I wanted.  I needed time to grieve, to let go, to live alone again.  I needed my own space for the first time in 18 years.  What in the world was I going to do?

What can a person do when they have indeed found the love of their life??

I decided I needed to create a plan of action.

I have dinner with Steve most evenings, but I don't spend the night.  Some days we do spend most of the day together, but that is rare.  Personally, I need to get everything closed up - the house emptied and sold, the divorce signed and sealed and over, my own condo into a livable, working space.  I have projects that I want to do, need to do and have to do.  I am going to need to get a job at some point soon.  Even though I have fallen head over heels in love with Steve, we are creating enough space so I can breathe, grieve and spread my wings.  For awhile there I cried every day.  Divorce is emotional, even if you are the one wanting it.

Steve gets to have breathing room, too.  He's been a single man for quite awhile and having a loud, giggling woman in his life is quite the adjustment.

I am truly unrecognizable from the woman I was a year ago.  She was so sad, that I actually hate to admit that it was me.  I can't even remember how many times I found myself with my head in my hands wishing for a more love filled life.  That's really all I wanted.  I wanted to love someone and have them visibly, emotionally and physically love me back.  My dear Tom couldn't and wouldn't do that.  He could say he loved me and he didn't want me to leave but that was the end of what he could give me.  I'm so grateful I followed my heart and moved on.

Source - “The Super Kiss,” by Puerto Rican artist Daniel Irizarri Oquendo

I don't want to bore you with too much intimate information, but I can tell you that this gal is now getting kissed a lot and she's loving it!  It might be because it's a new relationship, but I don't think so.  I think that the fella she fell in love with is a kisser and the gal he fell in love with is a kisser and together they are...silly.

And we hold hands.

A lot.

We are indeed silly, giggling, loving people and we found each other in the midst of chaos.

Oh and did I mention?  Steve received his Kidney transplant April 5th.  He spent four days in the hospital and has been getting better and better and better each day.  No more dialysis.  No more, no more.  I call him my Superman.

A new start, indeed.

A new start for us both.

Have a great day!

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Unrecognizable continued...

This is part two of my life update, I guess you'd say.  I was thinking that my life today is Unrecognizable to my life last year and I ended up sort of summarizing what I've been doing for a year.  To read part one, click here.

It was in Michigan that I realized that even though I was creating my own happiness, it wasn't going to be enough.  I had to take that leap of faith and ask for a divorce.  It didn't matter that I had no idea where I was to live, where the money was going to come from or how I was going to pay my bills.  All of those things were secondary to the fact that I could not make the necessary changes in my marriage to make it worth staying.   I remember telling myself that as long as we had Mocha, our kitty, that I would stay with Tom.  I didn't realize what a huge promise that was or how powerful that was going to be.  When Mocha passed away in Dec of 2011, my life fell apart and at the time I had no idea why.  It's all because my heart and my soul knew that I had to make that decision.  Do I stay or do I go?   It took me almost a year from her death to actually act, but it was the right thing.

I had been telling my husband on and off for years that things weren't right, we needed to be more affectionate, we should kiss daily, we needed to work on our relationship as a married couple as we were becoming roommates who cooked dinner every so often, etc.   He thought everything was just fine, but I think he just didn't want change.  Asking him for a divorce opened his eyes, that's for sure!   Since it came as such a shock, I decided to give him a couple of months of working together to get us back to a comfortable center, now that he was very aware I was serious.  

We managed to make it through December and January with very little to show for it.  February was our seven day trip to Barbados and I could see that trip would be best spent saying goodbye and getting the closure we both needed.  (see the post here) It was one of the best soul cleansing weeks I have ever had.  I said goodbye, I cried ten million tears and I had a good time with my husband.  By the end of the week I knew deep into my very core that I had done the right thing for both of us.  I love him but our 18 year relationship has run its course.  Now we just had to get to the paperwork.

I have been in my own apartment since March, we have put our condo on the market and we currently have a signed offer, he sold his business to his partner and ultimately moved out of state.  We packed up most of the condo contents together and asked friends to come help us pack and relocate our belongings, too.   Thank goodness for friends!  I thank them every day for helping us.  Tom and I still aren't divorced, the attorney we hired, who handles uncontested divorces has his feet in mud, I swear.  Hopefully before the end of the summer it will be final.  

I intended from the very beginning that there would be no fighting, no anger, nothing to make this awful.  The decision to end the marriage was emotional enough, I wasn't going to allow anger to make its way into the ending.   The only emotions I could control of course were mine.  Thankfully Tom was onboard for a good outcome.  So far our split has been calm.  It hasn't been stress-free, but I am so proud of us.  

Sunshine has absolutely come back into my life. My deep sadness has gone away.  I marvel at the way a body can both protect and heal itself.  Last year was protection mode, that's for sure.  This year is for healing.  

I'll tie up this story into a nice bow in the next installment.  


Tuesday, May 21, 2013


My life is almost unrecognizable from the way it was just a year ago.
Sure I do a lot of the same things, but I am very different.

Last year I was trying to bolster myself up so I could ask my husband for a divorce.  

Last year I was getting my antique booth up and running so I might have some money coming in.

Last year I was scared that once again, I would push the idea of divorce out of my mind and go on pretending to be happy. 

Last year I said yes to my friend, Steve, and told him that I would be his caregiver.  He lived alone and needed someone who would help him get to and from dialysis three times a week and be there for him for appointments, doctor visits and ultimately be his caregiver full time (for a few weeks) when he got the call to get his kidney transplant.  This full time role could be years away.  We were told 3 to 5 years.

Last year I was bone weary, emotionally drained, walking through my days praying something good would happen so I could hold on to that feeling to make it until the next day.  

Last year the thought of blogging was so overwhelming that I had to quit.

Last year the thought of taking a picture was mind numbing.

Last year walking into my house every day without my kitty there to greet me was just heartbreaking. 

I seriously felt that everything in my life was sad.  Even volunteering to take Steve to dialysis was sad.  He was usually happy and upbeat when I picked him up to take him to dialysis but by the time I got back a few hours later the dialysis had literally drained him, gave him a headache and he rarely ever felt decent again until the next day.  

It was actually the weekly trips (Tue, Thur and Sat) picking up Steve, taking him to D (as we called it) and then coming back an hour or so before he got unhooked from the dialysis machine, that got me living again.  They say if you can't help yourself then you can help someone else and that will in turn help you.  Well, I decided to listen to whoever THEY is!  I decided that if we had to go through 3 to 5 YEARS of dialysis, I couldn't be heartbroken every single time I dropped him off and picked him up.  I had to make it the best experience possible for both of us.  I had to make the day worth it.  So I just started being my goofy self, I laughed as much as possible, we talked about happy things, I asked questions about Steve's life and teased him about those things later (I love to tease!) and he responded with fun and laughter, too.   It was a light, a big, huge, giant light!  D days were still a bit depressing, but it was almost always a nice time together and I believe Steve got stronger and so did I during that time.

Found on Pinterest - unknown origin

I went on an adventure in August (leaving Steve in the capable hands of our transplant community who shuttled him back and forth while I was gone.)  I once again went up the East Coast and spent a few weeks with friends.  My friend Bob, who I've talked about quite a bit on here, is one of my best friends.  She and I are quite a pair and we always have a good time together.  She needed help getting her house cleaned out so she could put it on the market and I spent two weeks or more maybe with her and we played a little and packed and sorted and had a garage sale and stuff.  We talked and watched Downton Abbey Seasons One and Two and laughed and cried.  It was another incredible adventure.  More light was coming in to make me stronger.

I spent a week in Amish country with my friend Lynn.  She had set up a transplant recipient reunion at her place, so I helped in the final few days before the event.  It was so great to have so many friends from around the country come to the reunion.  My transplant community is my home, I've come to realize that more and more.  I love being a part of it.  I think a spotlight is now shining on me by this time.

I went home to Michigan in October for two weeks.  Home.  I always love being home, but this time I had so much hope for myself that I knew I had it in me to change my life.  It was this trip home that gave me the thinking time without any pressure.  I cried a million tears that trip.  It's funny how coming home can do that.  

To be continued...


Thursday, March 07, 2013

Cat Wedding

My niece changed all of the faces of a wedding party picture on the fridge to cat faces, from her magnet collection.  This is just such a hoot that I laugh every time I see it in my pictures.

Have a great day!

Monday, February 25, 2013

He loves me and I love him...

Where we swam in Barbados - just outside of Speightstown
Photo by Kristin Corlett

One of the hardest things I've ever had to do was to admit that I was wrong. I get a lot of practice at that particular sport as I am not as right as I wished I was. Most of the time I can just glide over the fact that I was wrong and just change my position a bit and not actually have to admit the wrongness. If it's not a big issue then that's pretty easy to do.

Sometimes it's the really big things in life that need to be adjusted and that's probably the hardest thing to do, ever. I'm in the middle of one of those Big Things in Life and I can whole heartedly agree, it's just heartbreaking. I've felt for a long time that just a few tweaks in my marriage and I would finally be happy. How hard would it be just change that a little bit? Well, it turns out that it's much harder than I anticipated. I'm ever the optimist as I believe I can do anything, make anything happen and create the life that I want. I've been feeling more and more that my husband and I were not on the same page and a lot of the time not even reading the same book! We don't argue, we don't fight, we just seem to exist in each others space. We aren't even angry with each other. In fact I do love my husband but we are truly living as roommates and have for many years.

If it wasn't for my husband I would not have found the purpose in my life. I've been searching for the place where I fit in for over 40 years. I was beginning to believe that I truly was a lost soul, that I was never going to find the place in the world where my heart would sing and my garden would grow. If it wasn't for my husband needing a liver transplant seven years ago, I would have never found the support group. It took many years of attendance to realize that being a part of that group, in those lives, was where I was meant to be. At the same time I was finding my place with them my marriage had turned from marriage to friendship. He loves me, I love him, but...

Sunset in Barbados - Photo by Kristin Corlett

My husband and I vacation really well together. We seriously do. We usually agree on what to do, where to go eat, how much to rest, how much to sightsee and we have a really great time. Our last vacation together was just last week. We spent a whole week on the Island of Barbados. His parents invited us to come visit and so we did. I would suggest that anyone in the midst of getting a divorce consider renting a beachside cottage and spend a week there. We had tons of alone time, no work, no cell phones, no internet. We talked for hours. We discussed, we bargained, we held hands and we cried. We left the island with some souvenirs, sand flea bites and the realization that we were doing the right thing for both of us and we had a plan.

To be fair, my husband since the very mention of it, does not want the divorce. He's very happy with me as his wife and has never thought of living his life without me. This divorce is all me. I'm the one who isn't happy and I'm the one who wants it. What we came away from in Barbados was that he finally sees my side and accepts that I want the divorce. We discussed finances, furniture, who gets what, what to keep, what to sell and where we will live. We decided to sell our condo. We also discussed how we would live with each other in our lives after the divorce. We don't have children together nor do we have any animals that we need to share, so we could go off into the sunset and never speak again, but he's too much a part of my life for that. I'm sure we'll see how it goes in the future, but I expect we will be good friends.

I wasn't sure I wanted to make this public until we signed the papers, but he announced on facebook the other day about our upcoming divorce, so the cat is out of the bag. It's been made public. It looks like he will live part time in Michigan and part time in Florida. I will live full time in Florida.

The word of the year for me is Intention. I intend to make this the happiest, most agreeable divorce that has ever been filed. So far my year of Intention has been working very well for me. Here's to a successful future for all of us.

Have a great day,

FYI - I realize I sound pretty happy-go-lucky about the whole thing.  I lightened the mood for blogging and didn't get into problems and issues.  There's no need to put any of that into print.

Tuesday, February 05, 2013

I'm in Love

Photo by Kristin Corlett

I'm in Love.

I am!

I just can't help it.

I wake up each morning (or late morning as the case may be)
and I love the mood I'm in.
I love the sheets I'm sleeping in.
I love the comforter that is pushed nearly off the bed by morning.
I love the way the light filters in through the curtains.

I love knowing that I have a day ahead of me to do all sorts of things!
I love the days that I don't have to shower.
I love meeting new people and giving them something to smile about.
I love making people laugh.
I love knowing that there are people out there thinking of me, at least for a few minutes each day.
I love being a part of this world.

I am head-over-heels, absolutely, completely and totally in Love.

How about you?

Have a great day!

Wednesday, January 30, 2013


I am a good friend to have.  It has taken more years than I care to admit to, but I've finally learned how to be a pretty good friend.  However, in order for me to be a friend, you need to be right in front of me.  This is becoming more and more apparent to me. The problem that I seem to have is with the follow-through.  I think I've mentioned a few million times that I work with Liver Transplant Families.  They need friends and they need people to become their friend instantly.  We don't have a lot of time to hash out all of the details of our lives to each other to see if we'd get along, we just love them as they come into our group.  So far it's worked out real well the past 7 years.  


Boy that's tough for me.  If someone doesn't call me asking for help or to do something, I just won't call.  If someone emails and asks a question, it seems to take me  F O R E V E R to write them back.  When someone is living right here in the area, we don't send cards when someone isn't feeling well (our group is made up entirely of sick people or people recovering from surgery) but those that live far away, I feel like I should write them a note every so often.  Send an email.  Maybe even make a phone call.  

I don't.

I think I got a butt-dial from someone today out in California.  They didn't leave a message and didn't call back, so I'm assuming that it was a mistake.  However, it made me happy that I was still in their phone!  Then I started thinking about the last time I spoke with them.  It occurred to me that the last three times I've called these folks it's been to tell them that someone had passed away.  I don't want to be the person no one wants to hear from because all I've got is sad news. 

I need to work on that.

One of the members of our group got a liver transplant last week.   I haven't been up to see them.  Someone else is having cancer treatments in another state but they've heard hardly a word from me.  If these folks were right in front of me or came to one of our meetings or social events, I would smoother them with love, listen all night long to what's going on or go out of my way to get them something that need.  Once that visual connection is gone it's like Out of Sight, Out of Mind.  

My heart is so big and I care for these folks so much and yet I seem to fail when they might need me most.  One of the main reasons I started asking people (pestering relentlessly is more like it) to move to Jacksonville after their transplant is so the new folks will have dozens of people with big hearts who can fill in the gaps and who have qualities and personalities that appeal to our patients and friends.  I know a few folks who have moved here that are so good with follow-through that it boggles my mind how they do it.  Hmmm, I wonder if they could teach a class?

The quote in the picture above is what started me on this subject.  It struck a nerve.  A good nerve, but also showed a weakness in me.  Thank you to whomever posted that quote.    

Have a great day!

Friday, January 25, 2013

Confit Pots

Confit Pots by Kristin Corlett

While in Alabama my Mom and I went to Fairhope, AL for a little shopping and dining excursion.  Hands down, Fairhope is one of the loveliest towns.  Even in the winter time the downtown area is full of flowers, the trees are decorated with lights and almost every building has a unique shop.  This time we shopped the main road and some of the side streets.  On one of those side streets we found an incredible antique shop called Aubergine.  They had just received a shipment of confit pots, straight from France and I admit, I was instantly in love.

When I inquired what a confit pot was I learned that they were pots where meats such as duck and goose were preserved.  (This is where we get duck confit!) They would bury the pots in the ground all the way up to the glazing in order to keep the contents cool and fresh.  This is why so many of the confit pots have dirt ground into the unglazed portions of the pot.  The chips and imperfections are common as they were used regularly in the South of France.

The pots, so gorgeous, were out of my price range, so the only part of them that I came home with was this photograph.


Wednesday, January 16, 2013

100 ThingsThat Make Me Happy - part IV

A couple of years ago I started a list of 100 Things that make me Happy.  I looked at the list yesterday and realized that I hadn't gotten to 100 things yet and it has been well over a year since I wrote a list.  While I was getting my car serviced and I had an hour long wait ahead of me, I wrote down all of the things I'd posted so far and then HAPPILY added a few dozen more!

I'm still not at 100, but I find that to be just silly.  I find things to be happy about each day, but so many of them are either hard to describe or are just fleeting moments of joy.  The ones I've written so far are pretty standard daily happiness things.

If you'd like to read the entire list, so far, here are the links to Part I, Part II, and Part III.

61.  My red plaid down blanket from Target.  If I had known how awesome that blanket was going to be, I would have purchased more than one.

62.  Finding excellent condition retro furniture.  My heart just goes pitter pat! Even the stuff I can fix up is pretty awesome, but just seeing cool retro furniture is enough. Contrary to popular belief, I don't have to own or buy everything I like :)

63.  Cleaning something really dirty until it shines like the top of the Chrysler Building!

64.  Magic Erasers. Original and Extra Power.  No scent, no bathroom bubbles, just Original or Extra Power.

65. A warm sunny day with no humidity.  This makes me very very happy!

Image Source

66. Having my keys made in cool designs.

67. Kissing.  Yep, I'm a kisser.  If a boy I wanted to date wasn't a good kisser then there was no hope for us!

68. The Liver Transplant Support Group meetings that I attend each Thursday.  I love to go, to be with those people and to be a part of something so wonderful.

69. Thursday lunch with the Support Group friends is a highlight.  This is where we chat and laugh and really get to know one another.

70.  Receiving a message asking if I want to hang out, or have lunch, or meet up somewhere to take photos.  I feel like I do a lot of asking, so when I get the invite I'm thrilled!

71.  Finally being able to use the new calendar! Ilee Papergoods sells a gorgeous calendar.  I didn't get one last year, after having one the previous two years and I missed it.

72. Going to an auction determined to come home with something and doing just that.

73.  I am instantly happy when given a compliment.  It's taken a long time to be able to accept the compliments and not try to brush them off as not true.  It's good to feel happy about receiving them.

74. Painting Furniture.  I enjoy painting furniture more than I ever would have imagined.

75.  Receiving bread bag tags or fortune cookie fortunes from friends.

Have a Great Day!

Sunday, January 13, 2013

Dick and Jane Book

One of my auction scores from last year (remember waaay back then in 2012?) there was a teacher edition Dick and Jane book.  It had a giant blue hard cover and a flap and snap that could turn that big book into a stand alone piece - like an easel.  The book is almost three feet tall and was designed so that the teacher could stand up in front of the class with her book and the kids would all have their books and everyone could read along.

The teacher's edition that I have is in excellent condition.  You can tell that the pages were flipped and turned a time or two, but the little ones obviously didn't get their hands on this book.

The only ruckus these pages have seen are the antics of Fluffy and Spot with Dick, Jane and Sally running behind.

Each child has their own four page section and Spot and Fluffy have a few pages each, too.

I've had these for a couple of months and I honestly can't decide how to display them and sell them in my booth.  I don't want fingers touching all of the beautiful artwork and I don't want the pages ripped or dropped.  I may have to invest in some heavy duty page protectors like I've seen for large photography.

Thankfully this book came with almost two complete sets of the same book, so I can sell one book whole and the other book as sections.

If anyone of you folks would love to own your own copy, just drop me a line and I'll get back to you about the specific sizes, price, etc.

Bye, bye.

Just bye.

Kristin says bye!

Monday, January 07, 2013

Silver platter wreath

I am completely and totally in love with this wreath made of sliver platters.  Ever since I first saw it on Pinterest I have had my eye out for silver platters.  I don't want to pay too much, obviously, because this wreath with 16 platters could get real pricey, real fast.  I've already found a couple platters, but the other night at an auction I was SO excited because I won a box lot of silver plate that included several platters for $5.  Five Dollars!

Those platters would put me just over 1/4 of the way around the circle.  By Christmas time next year I could have the whole wreath!  As fate would have it, there were two box lots of silver and the one with all the platters was given to the wrong person.  I ended up with bowls and gravy boats.  Not what I was hoping for.  I left the box at the auction house, hoping that the person who got the wrong box would return it for the one they bid on and won.  I'll find out in a couple of days if that happened.  crossing my fingers.

The two photos above are from the Bachman House Christmas of 2011.  There are dozens of pictures of the interior all decorated and it's gorgeous!  Take a look and enjoy.

I'm not taking this minor setback in my accumulation of platters dampen my enthusiasm.  I will create this wreath and I intend to accomplish it this year, just in time for Christmas, 2013.

Have a great day!

*Just saying Silver Platter makes me think of the Brady Bunch.  Anyone else think of that, too?

Saturday, January 05, 2013

New Year - Let's stir it up a bit.

Happy New Year!

I had a friend from Pennsylvania staying with me for a few days over the New Year holidays.  She was itching to warm her feet from the snowy PA weather and thankfully, after a few days, Jacksonville did warm up a bit.

We went to Jacksonville Beach one afternoon, the tide was moving out making the sand hard packed and easy for strolling and shell collecting.

The seagulls were enjoying the weather by just hanging out by the waters edge.  Along came this young boy determined to walk right into the flock.   It was quite a hoot when they all (except this fella in front) started squawking and taking flight!  The boy was startled for a moment, but quickly enjoyed the happenings all around him.

*Please click to enlarge the photos

I'm a lot like that boy this year.  I'm determined to stir it up a bit this year.  I have a list a mile long of all the things I'd like to do, the things I'd like to start back up again (photography and blogging being two of those things) and new projects I want to tackle.  I want to expand my antique business, paint more furniture and get my name out there.

My goal for The Goat this year, 2013, is to blog at least once a week.  I think I can probably dip my feet into the water that much in the beginning and hopefully by the middle of the year, I'll be able to add in a couple more days a week.

One of my very favorite messages that I've received from The Universe ( is how I'm going to end this post.

In all things, always and forever, simply wish the best for all involved, without stating what you think that is.
And then, whatever does happen, no matter what happens, know that it was. 

All the best,     
The Universe