November 30, 2009

bikey/yogi stuff

Posted in body image, family, health, lovey, tales from the gym, weekend at 9:51 pm by Marise Phillips

i have been working out fairly consistently these past few weeks and the things I find myself doing the most are bicycling and yoga. partly because my gym is close to work, offers good (aka easy enough for me) classes at times I can handle — and partly because of the immersive, meditative quality of both activities. i spend so much time in my head that i’m in dire need of classes like these, that force me back into my body *and* leave me feeling relaxed afterwards. hooray!

so J & I went on a jaunt yesterday, drove the car (with our handy-dandy, new hitch-mounted bike rack) over to Canada Road out near the junction of highways 92 and 280, and tried a new route along the Crystal Springs reservoir. The weather was perfect: sparkly bright sun and water, warm, and the route wasn’t too tough, despite the hills being slightly more challenging than promised by reviewers (but then again, what idiot rides a single-speed out in nature? oh yeah, me!) i don’t think J loved it, but he was a good sport and took some cool photos.

note: i’m still not near the point where i like seeing photos of myself in short-sleeved shirts, but i hope to get there sometime in 2010. enjoying the ride nonetheless.

December 26, 2006

another xmas bites it

Posted in family, home, lovey, weekend at 11:37 am by Marise Phillips

balancing while eating, originally uploaded by RiseyP.


but at least it didn’t bite.

xmas was fairly relaxing and nice this year. spent 6 hours at Kaiser ER the day before, so got that out of the way. j’s hurty tummy was getting worse, so we decided to try & get to the bottom of it. unfortunately the docs had no clue… but at least there’s nothing sharp and operable in there. we celebrated by dining at Tsuru Kushi in Japan Town.

so by the time monday rolled around, we were a bit more rested and relieved. i’d done most of the box-clearing before heading to the ER, so cooking was my my task for xmas day.

i made stuffing with sage sausage, leeks, onions, celery, mushrooms, and bread, of course πŸ˜‰ i also did a winter vegetable au gratin: sweet potatoes, fingerlings, acorn squash with herbes de provence and some kind of yummy cheese that w & c gave me the other nite. since safeway had run out of cranberries the day before, i was reduced to preparing a can of cranberry sauce, adding slices apples and clementines, ground cloves and cinnamon. still tasted pretty good. i popped some pillsbury crescent rolls in the oven for good measure.

can you say carb-attack? mmmm!

mom, dad and john came over at about 5ish and brought the turkey, green beans w/bacon, carrots and a vintage “applesauce bread” (recipe from john’s great-grandmother). everything tasted yummy and we enjoyed razzing each other soundly.

then we opened prezzies. we weren’t supposed to buy each other anything this year but jason totally ignored that rule. i was also somewhat naughty as well by giving everyone 2-3 DVDs. woops.

November 29, 2006

orifice? check!

Posted in family, home at 9:49 pm by Marise Phillips

if i’ve got one, they’re going to peer into it. the bank, that is.

i’m frankly sick to shit of all the last-minute scrambles i’m being forced to go through, just to provide all the documentation the mortgage lender expects from us. i don’t understand why they can’t get the information they need via my credit report or some other method — but are, instead, relying on me to provide copies of my great-aunt’s cousin-twice-removed’s father-in-law’s dog’s second wife’s tax return from 1965.


—five minutes pass—

Oh wait, i JUST found out why this is happening. i just got off the phone with my realtor, who informed me that the loan processor his office always uses is leaving the company tomorrow, and while she told us that all the paperwork was complete 2 weeks ago, ACTUALLY the truth is that it wasn’t even STARTED until today. and we were planning to close TOMORROW. now it looks like we will not close until Monday at the earliest.

this means my parents’ move will have to be postponed, and i will have to reschedule all the service appointments i carefully set up for early next week.

fucking SLAGASS bitch!

November 21, 2006

why it so hard

Posted in aging, depression, family, home, lovey, work at 11:38 pm by Marise Phillips

  • to write well?
  • to concentrate on how I’m feeling and reacting, as opposed to obsessing about how everyone else is doing?
  • to react “appropriately” when others around me lose their shit?
  • to see my laptop’s screen?
  • (oh, did I mention that i wear BIFOCALS now? once again: OLD)

ugh. i think i just need to vent a bit.

yesterday, I had to deal with my anxiety-attack-tastic mother who was having a freakout over a plumber being “rude” to her. all i could think was “oh fuck. this is only going to get worse until the move. no, wait a minute, this is only going to get worse until she dies. fucking great.”

my dad didn’t help, either, of course. both of them are completely useless at dealing with the world most of the time. yesterday their helplessness irritated me so much, it was all I could do not to scream “shutthefuckupdontyourealizeiamsavingyoufromcertaindestitution sowhycantyoujustbereasonableandsaneforonceinyourlives andmakesomethingeasyformejustonceforfuckssake?”

which is always fun.

work and home life are also a real joy. not only is my job continuing not to live up to the title i’ve been given (my fault, i suppose) — it’s quite clear that my boyfriend is mourning the impending loss of his beloved city. i noticed a marked silence tonight as he slowly, dolefully wrapped each of his (vast collection of) plastic aliens in a paper towel, filling and stacking a pile of precisely-labeled, neat banker’s boxes in the long hallway near our door.

i suppose, however, it’s worth it because the house we are moving to is beautiful, peaceful, well-situated, graced with a fabulous garden, and a provides a palatable way to care for my crumbling parents.

oh, and we will be removing all contingencies first thing tomorrow. woo! hoo!

November 15, 2006

it ain’t over til it’s over

Posted in family, home, lovey, writing at 11:25 pm by Marise Phillips

November 15, 2006

Dear Mr. L and Ms. P,

Thank you for taking the time to read this letter. My partner J and I, along with my parents, have grown quite fond of the home you are selling, and are eager to move forward with the deal. Since the price we settled on is more than its fair market value, my hope is that you will take the following considerations into account when reviewing our request for repairs.

After touring several other multi-unit properties in the East Bay, and weighing the pros and cons of each, we selected this property for two specific reasons: the separation between the two structures, and the apparent soundness of their respective foundations. Because of the relatively small size of the cottage compared to my parents’ current home, however, J and I went into this transaction fully prepared to invest time and money to make it as comfortable as possible for them. Meanwhile, we looked forward to the prospect of a turnkey situation with the main house.

Upon review of the second round of inspection and pest reports, however, we have some apprehension about the number of repairs needed to bring the property up to the condition we originally expected to find it in, based on the disclosures and reports we reviewed before making the offer.

Therefore, in order to address our key safety concerns, there are two items which we would especially appreciate you taking care of: the roof certification and inspection of the fireplace and wood-burning stoves. Your attention to these matters before close of escrow would go a very long way in mitigating our hesitation in proceeding with this purchase transaction.

Thank you again for your consideration in this matter.

Very sincerely yours,

October 27, 2006

crossing fingers!!

Posted in family, lovey, self-improvement at 11:07 pm by Marise Phillips

still life with stick balls, originally uploaded by RiseyP.

my parents’ place officially went under contract today, and by monday, we may make an offer on a beautiful craftsman bungalow and cottage in alameda.

jason still hasn’t seen it yet; but the parents are all for the idea.

the gardens are heavenly.

check out the pix i took!

July 16, 2006

8 lbs down…

Posted in dieting, family, weekend at 11:09 pm by Marise Phillips

54 to go!!

Oh ma gah — I bought the most gorgeous shoes today; check out how perfect and incredible they are:


they make even my thick-ish ankles look trim & sexy! YAY!

Sigh: two more days left at my wonderful job, and then it’s time to go to the much better-paying, hopefully not too-soul-destroying new(er) job! As J likes to tease me, my new job just wasn’t new enough for me, so I had to get a newer one!! Heh πŸ˜‰

BTW, I am soo happy with the nice weather we’ve been having this month. Sorry to say, if global warming is what has thawed our normally icy-cold SF summer, then i’ll take it. (My deepest apologies to Al Gore — but I love me some warm weather!)

Oh, and lovely news from the parentals. Out of money (again.) But I was fairly pleased with my outlook and reaction this time: calm, collected, fair and — to risk repeating the boringest-ever line Kristy and I overheard at Cafe Royale — I kept my boundaries firmly in place.

Meanwhile, anyone want to adopt two 60-something couch potatoes? Free to a good home!

January 2, 2006

ok, so maybe i lied.

Posted in family, self-improvement at 7:11 pm by Marise Phillips

maybe i *do* believe in something slightly resembling New Year’s Resolutions. it could just be having a few days in a row off work — makes me get all To Do List-y.

But last night as I lay sleepless in the guest room, thrashing and kicking the duvet into a large cone shape (per J), I couldn’t get my mind off the things I feel I *must* do, not sure how, not sure when.

I just know Not Doing Them is going to drive me to an early grave, literally and otherwise.

RiseyP’s Must Do List

  1. Taper off the evil anti-depressant
  2. Lower my cholesterol, hopefully enough to no longer require pharmaceutical assistance
  3. Get back in shape so that I can once again enjoy the following activities:
    • Skiing
    • Swimming
    • Hiking
    • Tennis
    • Rollerblading
    • Basically, being seen in public πŸ˜‰
  4. Get back on top of my finances by:
    • making a budget and sticking to it
    • bringing lunch to work 3-4 times a week
    • taking in a bit of freelance work
  5. Practice yoga and meditation
  6. See a dermatologist (or homeopath?) to address various minor, recurring skin issues
  7. Take really good care of my teeth (which used to be my pride and joy!) by:
    • wearing my retainer every night
    • brushing with the SoniCare every day
    • using the various whitening products J regularly brings home
  8. Take better care of my hands and nails

i wrote to my brother, and that made me feel better about the whole aftermath-of-him-not-visiting-us-for-the-holidays:

Sorry I didn’t get to talk to you before you left for Korea. I was still upset about the Christmas thing, and I am no good at talking when I’m upset 😦

But I wanted to thank you for replying via email and for your voicemail. I was impressed by your thoughtful, reflective reaction to the situation, and I really appreciated your sincere apology.

I think I got so upset about you not visiting for a couple of reasons: obviously, we all wanted to see you and were very disappointed at the late notice; moreover, I have felt really stressed out about having to help mom and dad out financially, what with my tendency to live above my means, not to mention the condo in Colorado which J and I bought as an investment property, just a month before dad let me know they were in danger of losing their house.

So, considering all that, the thought of having you in town for a while made me feel less like an overwhelmed “only child.” As you can probably relate, it’s very comforting to hang out with you, knowing what we went through as kids together, and how all the crap w/mom & dad continues to this day. And it’s been especially rough for me, ever since they moved up here and so much closer to me geographically than they used to be (and I know you had to deal with this when you were all living in SoCal. sigh.)

Anyway, I finally was able to get up to Marin to see them today for the holidays. The delay was due to a bunch of obstacles that kept cropping up: their oven being broken, mom’s knee being really out of whack, and my car getting broken into the other day (no biggie, just a small rear window smashed in but, luckily, nothing stolen).

For simplicity’s sake, we just took them out to lunch at a restaurant near their house. It was good food but the visit was fairly rushed and non-relaxing — mostly cause I just have a really hard time hanging out with them without wanting to strangle someone. i wish that wasn’t the case, and I do try to work on it.

At any rate, I want to find out if you still want/need that digital camera I was going to give you for Xmas. If so, I’ll gladly send it to you – just let me know your new address.

December 28, 2005

li’l fluffy friends make for a happy holiday

Posted in family, pets at 5:51 pm by Marise Phillips

While my brother’s failure to show up was mightily disappointing, I must point out that the many animals I got to hug and kiss made my holiday weekend quite special.

To wit:

Sadie, the most adorable miniature Dachshund on the planet

Her lovely “tweenie” sister, Violet

Kizzy, the many-toed barfy cat, enjoying the sunshine

Sweet Boy, also enjoying the sunshine

Auntie D and her new lab pups, who visited us for Xmas brunch

December 27, 2005

still sad…

Posted in family at 9:55 pm by Marise Phillips

well, my brother didn’t come up here on the 26th as planned. apparently, he finally got in touch with his new boss in Korea, and they need him to fly back out there sooner than he assumed they did.

my mom called to relay the news first thing that morning. she told me that my dad cried when he heard my brother wasn’t going to visit. he hasn’t seen my brother in over a year and a half, i think.

my dad’s reaction just killed me. i can barely stand to think of him crying. just so sad and awful.

so i wrote my brother an email telling him how much he disappointed us, and how angry I was with him for not planning ahead better; this whole month, he’s been driving me crazy with his vague and generally non-committal approach to figuring out how he was going to get up here. the thing that pissed me off the most was knowing that my parents would have been more than happy to drive down to OC to visit him and his kids, had he just given them enough notice.

i still feel terrible about it, even a day and a half later.

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