Monthly Archives: January 2013

Oh My! We Have Certainly Been Through A Lot Of ‘Life’ Together!



I’ve been thinking about all the many life experiences we (me & my clients) have been through together. I was about twenty or so when many of us began our long relationship. Yep, we were so young! I was married to Brian( affectionately known as Dip-shit) πŸ˜… well…. Maybe not exactly ‘affectionately! I was a young, inexperienced stylist. I was eager to succeed and you trusted me, and stuck with me as I gained experience and grew into a seasoned stylist ! Thanks for that! Your loyalty has been very, very appreciated! Many of you have followed me to three salons since we’ve known each other and others have been in my life since the beginning of my own salon in 1993! Yep 1993!!! Can you believe it’s been that many years! How does time slip by so fast?

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Getting the boys ready to travel !



It’s about time to start getting our kitty’s ready for the big move. They’re going to be quite surprised about the big adventure we have planned for them! Although, as you know, we continue to go back and forth about what the best thing is for them. Will they be better off staying here with a new home, how would they adapt to different people? They are not especially fond of anyone but us, even their fondness for us is questionable at times! On the other hand would it be best for them to suffer through being transferred by plane, (in cargo), to Panama? Is it best for them to be with us in an unfamiliar place ? There is no easy answer to this dilemma ! So my approach for the time being is, I’m going to pursue all options to the best of my ability and just see what happens in the end. I’ll attempt to find a good home for the old guys, which I believe is not likely to happen , and I’ll prepare them to join us in panama which my gut tells me is what is most likely the outcome .

So I’ve invested in travel crates for them. I bought two crates that have little food and water bins attached to the doors. I have places them in our room with the doors open and a plush blanket ready for a good cat nap. I put a little food in the bin and everyday I sprinkle a bit of catnip inside to entice them to enter and enjoy! Muahahaha!! It’s working! They have been wondering into the crates to sniff and to curiously check out what it’s all about.
The second part of our diabolical plan is to slowly desensitize them to kitty harnesses ! Yep! I said, kitty harnesses ! So every night we very gently place the harness on them and just let them hang out with them on. Then before we go to bed we gently remove the harness and place it in front of them to smell and to inspect. So far, so good! In a couple of weeks we will very slowly and ever so carefully we will introduce the leash !!! Yikes! Hard to imagine that we will survive that part , stay tuned ! We’ll let you know how many stitches we need after that step !

I will be arranging for a visit to the vet soon to have all their vaccinations updated and a clean bill of health documented. I’m hoping to get some helpful advise from the vet about the safest, healthiest approach to transporting them . And while I’m there I’ll also see if the vet might know of anyone looking for two 12 year old slightly grumpy cats! Don’t laugh! It could happen ! There’s lots of ‘Crazy’ cat people out there!!😧 Yea, I know, sigh , Midnight & Copper will most likely be learning Spanish right along with us! I really never expected that the cats would end up being one of the most difficult aspects of organizing this adventure! But I did fully expect to expect the ‘Unexpected’! So begins our big Adventure!


Starting Over



I’ve noticed while following many seasoned bloggers that WordPress often puts out these weekly challenges, either photo challenges or writing challenges. I really enjoy reading them and in the back of my mind I’ve often thought,” Someday maybe I’ll try it!”. Well, why not now? I mean, when I saw what the subject of this weeks writing challenge was, I just knew it was time to dive in! The subject is , are you ready for this?… STARTING OVER! Sheesh! I got this one, here’ goes……

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Progress Report



This is Scotts workshop, he also has a big tent outside where the big table saw lives because as you can see, this space it teensy!

Progress Report!

Scott is making great progress on all the remaining cabinetry for the kitchen and dining room. All the interior door trim , baseboards, and window trim is installed. He is currently working on the range hood cover. The upper cabinets for the kitchen are being processed, there are 21 doors currently being prepped for assembly. The front door needs to be finished off with moulding and trim. We finished the design of the built-in entertainment center in the great room . That will be the last big piece of interior work for Scott.

On Monday we had a consultation with a stager to get an idea of exactly what that will entail. Next Monday we have set up two more consultations with two other stagers . This should give us a good idea of what to expect in terms of packing up our remaining household. We need to know what furniture a stager will likely bring in and what pieces of ours will need to stay. It would be really good to have a paint consultation as well because my paint choices definitely won’t appeal to the masses! Our goal for listing the house for sale is still pretty on target for March. I’m being told my many different realtors that houses in my neighborhood are selling very fast so our fingers are crossed! Yesterday I was told that a house was listed for sale on Monday and there were ten offers the very same day! Yowsa! We seem to be hitting the real estate market at a great time! Maybe we’ll be “LUCKY”! Lol!

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Lucky? Really? Hmmmm…



Your So Lucky!

Lately I’ve noticed that this is the reaction we get from complete strangers when we tell them that we are moving to Panama. “Your so Lucky!”. Hmmmm…. Ive been thinking about that. Are we “Lucky”? In my mind ‘Luck’ is something that ‘Happens’ to you, as opposed to actually ‘ ‘Making’ something happen with intention . Winning the lottery would be lucky. Finding a hundred dollar bill on the sidewalk would be lucky! I suppose to a complete stranger who doesn’t know anything about us or how or why our move is taking place, might see it as ‘Luck’. Possibly moving away to another country sounds like something they would dream of doing but would never actually act on . Therefore by virtue of our apparent ability to follow through with our dream , and to make it a reality, they see us as , ‘Lucky’! This may be true.

I know I feel pretty ‘lucky’ to have a partner who wants to live the same kind of life that I find appealing . We’re ‘both’ equally ready to change the way we live our lives and we’re ready to experience a completely different culture. We’re on the same page in terms of our willingness to trade in the life we are accustomed to and letting go of expectations and familiarity . If only one of us liked the idea of making such an extreme lifestyle change , we’d be in big trouble! We are ‘lucky’ to share a very similar desire to take on such an enormous lifestyle change.

Luckily Scott and I are not averse to hard work because there is much hard work to put our plan into action. One of the nice things about our partnership is that we have a nice balance of skill-sets that combine to make a great team. This is truly lucky! I have a vocation that I love which provides the financial support that enables Scott to work full time at completing the construction of our house. If Scott had to work full time in order for us to pay the mortgage he would never be able to prepare our house to sell. We are both working hard at doing what we do best as we work together towards a common desire. In this , we are lucky. We work well together in the strategizing and prioritizing of all the details it takes to move our lives to another country. Our lists are extensive! We have built our lists together and as we check things off the lists we feel a sense of accomplishment that ‘together’ we are working towards a mutually satisfying goal. Is this ‘Lucky’? Maybe.

I suppose if I’m truly honest with myself I do feel ‘lucky’ to have made the decision to begin going down a new path. Having a life partner who is so incredibly well matched with me makes me feel ‘lucky’, indeed! The timing of our plans finally coming to fruition feels pretty ‘lucky’. Everything seems to be falling into place just as it needs to in order for us to feel like our plan is moving along smoothly. It’s been my experience that when things go smoothly it’s ‘Meant to Be!’! If we were hitting walls and running into big snags I would feel quite nervous about trying to make a square peg fit into a round space! No big , insurmountable issues have arisen which to me, is ‘Lucky’! Is it ‘Lucky’? Or is it a result of intentional , strategic, smart planning, along with a combination of good ol’ hard work? Ya! I’m goin’ with that! 😜. Maybe a little bit of good ‘Luck’ too!

These Are A Few Of My Favorite Things!



I wanted to take a snapshot of some of the decorative things that help make my salon distinctive . To me, One Eighty Four Plaza South is a unique environment where I’ve felt blessed to have spent the past twenty years doing what I love to do. Given the fact that we all spend so much of our life at our place of work, don’t you think that place should be a place where you feel happy, creative and inspired and most importantly, comfortable? In a perfect world everybody would get to create their own unique workspace so that they would find pleasure throughout their workday and look forward to going to work. Not unlike my home, my salon is a reflection of me . I’ve always hoped that when people enter my salon they feel enveloped in welcoming comfort, that they feel relaxed and at home. It’s not pretentious , stuffy or trendy and most definitely, not institutional. In twenty years of being in business I’ve never felt that the design of my salon has become dated or needed remodeling, it’s a timeless style. I’ve never tired of it, just the opposite, I’ve grown to love it even more with each passing year. As you can imagine , leaving it will be hard. But having created such a place, a place I’m proud of and a place I value greatly, I know beyond a doubt I can do it again! This time I’ll do it with my devoted partner Scott! It won’t be a hair salon but it will be a life . One that both Scott and I have planned for and worked hard to create. I’m sure it will be a life that reflects who we are and we will be proud of our choices and hopefully, if we’re lucky each day we will look around at the artifacts of our life and feel peaceful , satisfied and eager to continue making it great!



Something I Love In My Salon



This beautiful piece of art is very special to me because it was a gift from one of my dearest friends, Lauretta. (Lauretta is not only a friend but my former sister in law, so my daughters Aunt) It is a collection of old paintings done on tin. They were collected and framed by Lauretta’s mother who is deceased. Her mother collected them when the family lived in Mexico City when Lauretta was a young child. I have always loved it and so Lauretta very generously gifted it to me and long ago it hung in my home . When I designed my salon I realized it would look great there and then it would be appreciated by many people. I learned that the pictures are known as ‘retablos ‘, they were a gift of thanks to the church from parishioners for answered prayers. I’m not a particularly religious person but I love the sentiment of gratefulness they represent. I also love the sentiment of generosity from my loving friend, Lauretta. I will be bringing this with me to someday hang in my home in Boquete and it will make me think of Lauretta every time I look at it.


Something I love in my salon!



This is a very special piece of artwork on the wall of the bathroom in my salon. It was hand painted by a dear man who was a family friend from my childhood . His name is Bob Mutzenburg, he is a very talented artist who specialized in custom pin-striping on cars as well as painting signage for businesses .When I was 16 he did something very special for me that always makes me smile when I think of it. I had this bright orange Chevy Vega Wagon that I loved, Bob showed up at my house and took my precious car without any explanation ! I was so confused and had no idea why he would do such a thing! After several hours Bob returned with my car, he had pin-striped it as a gift! It was beautiful and I was thrilled! So having a piece of Bob’s artwork in my salon to look at everyday has been a gift I have cherished !

Exciting! New! Adventure! REALLY?



I notice, as you may have as well , that I often refer to our future life abroad with various adjectives such as ‘Exciting’, ‘New’ and let’s not forget,’Adventure’! Let me assure you, I suffer no illusions of grandeur about the realities of everyday life living in a new place. I tend to focus on the positive and some may say, optimistic aspects especially while writing about our new life. Naturally! But, I also realize that after we get through this long stage of planning, preparing and strategizing, ‘actual’ life will begin in earnest. Reality will set in and it will not always be great or exciting , even the ‘new’ will begin to fade. Just like life in general, there’s no good without a bit of bad.

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Tick, Tick, Tick, Time Is Flying By!



Everyday gets us closer and closer to our goal date for our big move to Panama.( May-June) Scott’s focus has been getting our house ready to sell. My focus , naturally, is much different . My business , mostly the people, is becoming extremely emotional for me. As we’ve entered the new year I really have a sense of the ‘end’ coming quickly. Many of my clients,(friends), have been telling me that they prefer to stay in denial that I’m really leaving. I suppose for now being in denial will work for them because we still have several more appointments set up. But for me, it’s not quite so easy as I am faced with seeing such a large number of people who I know I must say goodby to soon. It’s going to be one of the most difficult aspects of this adventure , saying goodbye! Gulp! As for my two dear colleagues, I am also beginning to feel deep sadness for abandoning them. I must say that both Natalie and Elisabeth offer nothing but the kindest , most genuine support I could ever hope for. They make me feel so cared about and I’m grateful for their desire to take care of my clients and that Natalie will take over the salon when I’m gone.

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Back To Work!



It’s a fresh new year and my first day back in the salon in 2013! I spent this morning ( from 7:00-12:00) emailing my clients their schedule for their hair appointments for this yearπŸ˜”. I’m scheduled to work until June 1. Seeing how few appointments each person has with me is quite a reality check ! YIKES! I’m REALLY doing this, huh? Yep! Looks like it! 😁 I can tell this is gonna be tough! There’s a pretty high probability that there are about to be many tears! I’ll get the Kleenex outπŸ˜­πŸ˜‚πŸ˜’πŸ˜“πŸ˜₯πŸ˜°πŸ˜…

My Mom Visited From Texas.



Her arrival in San Francisco! We were all decked our in Christmas hats!

My mom lives in Fort Worth, Texas and its been about three years since she’s been out to California to visit. Mariah decided she really wanted to get her grandmother out for a visit for Christmas so she organized her cousins,( my sisters four kids), to all pitch in to buy her an airplane ticket . My Mom was, of course, thrilled beyond description. What a kind, generous gift from all her grandchildren ! She arrived on Christmas day and we had a great time with her. She got do do everything she wanted to do while she was here. Mariah took her to Carmel and Monterey, I gave her a cut/color makeover, she got plenty of time with all her sweet grand kids ! Everybody came over to my house and we had a pizza & movie night that made one Grandma very happy! And I was especially excited to give her an iPad mini that Santa had left under my tree especially for her and Glen! Now she can FaceTime with me when I move to Panama and it turns out all the grandkids have iPhones so she can FaceTime with all of them as well!! She quickly fell in love with her iPad and when she got home Glen ( her hubby) has also enjoyed playing with it. I wish I could have given them two but they’ll have to figure out how to share😬. I think this Christmas is one my mom will cherish for a long time to come . Read the rest of this entry