Just Frances

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    Another year passes - Dec 31st, 2011
    As 2011 winds to an end, I find myself reflecting on the year’s joys (and sorrows). It’s funny the way we do that—the way we compartmentalise our years as if the changing of the date will truly make an impact on our lives. But I suppose we need to have hope that ‘things will be better’ next year—just like we have hope that with each tomorrow life will improve. [more...]

    Apologies for the delay - Dec 27th, 2011
    I don’t know why I feel the need to apologise for the delay in posting a story about my Christmas weekend, but I feel bad for not having shared with you yet, so… Sorry for the delay! [more...]

    Connect the dots - Nov 17th, 2011
    Confession: I have 292 Facebook friends. At least 46 of them are people I’ve never met. 25 or so are people I’ve only met once. 93 are former classmates. 64 are family of one description or another. And (not including family) I’ve only seen 18 of them in real life in the past 12 months. [more...]

    Gorillas and cheese - Nov 15th, 2011
    A post about gorillas and cheese? Did I mean grilled cheese? Have I gone mad? Well, yes, no, and probably would be the answers there. [more...]

    If the shoe fits - Nov 5th, 2011
    I’ve been experimenting with footwear since my return to Scotland. Yep, it’s heels for this redneck, if you can believe it. [more...]

    Which way? - Nov 1st, 2011
    In America it seems to be fairly straight forward: We move right. In the UK (and potentially the rest of the world?) people seem to move all over the place. [more...]

    A thankful November - Nov 1st, 2011
    Just Frances was started with the idea of sharing random nothingness with family and friends as a way to stave off the isolation I was feeling in the first few months after Paul died. It had started with the idea that it would be bright and cheery (fake it ‘til you make it sort of stuff) but slowly I started to share my grief and other less-than-cheery stuff. [more...]

    Times, they are a-changin’ - Oct 30th, 2011
    Ah, yes. It’s that magical time of year when the clocks fall back an hour as you sleep. I always liked clock-changing times as a child, though I don’t really know why. Of course, as an adult it’s been a bit of a pain because it means remembering to run all over the house (and cars changing various clocks. [more...]

    Music to launder money by - Oct 18th, 2011
    There’s an ice cream van that comes around the neighbourhood most evenings around 6:30. When I first heard the magical music, I smiled as I realised that I could grab my money and run down to buy a frozen treat if I wanted. [more...]

    Cutting out the middles - Oct 14th, 2011
    So I’m working on a new design project for my parents. Just a little something that will make Mom smile—and me. (Likely others in the family, too, but I can’t be sure yet.) [more...]

    Another light bulb moment - Sep 27th, 2011
    Today my Dad gave me a quick call on Skype to tell me that a parcel arrived for me (I’ve had my post forwarded to the folks’ place) and he wanted to know if he should open it. The parcel was from my utility company and it seemed strange that they’d be sending me anything other than an electric bill, which I get by email anyhow. [more...]

    Rationalised spending - Sep 26th, 2011
    Yesterday was meant to be my last training run before my first (and last) ever marathon next Sunday. Only plans got changed. As they do. [more...]

    Not today - Sep 19th, 2011
    I was going to write a post about my first day of classes, but in typical student fashion, I just can’t be bothered. So instead, I’ll just post a quick hello to test out my new post-by-phone application on my gadet-y new android phone. [more...]

    Honestly, I’ll keep blogging - Sep 14th, 2011
    It would seem that I’m not very good at this whole blogging thing of late, and I apologise for that. I suppose that it has a lot to do with the fact that I am no longer living in near isolation—meaning I have real life people to talk to—and that I have been running around quite a bit visiting family and friends and getting ready for the start of term. [more...]

    Happy things coming soon - Jun 23rd, 2011
    I have happy things to share with the world. Things that include cats in boxes, pretty little visas, and the continuing success of selling my treasures. But right now I’m sick as a dog. Still. [more...]

    Lost voice messages - Jun 14th, 2011
    Just before bedtime on Sunday I started to feel a bit of a tickle in my throat and by the time I woke up Monday morning, my voice was gone. (I think the tickle stole it!) I was certain it would get better as the day went on so I headed into the office. [more...]

    Three cheers for Monday! - Jun 7th, 2011
    To make up for my last few sad(ish) posts, here’s a happy one for you (times three)! [more...]

    The counting begins - Jun 2nd, 2011
    I am counting down the days until The Big Move takes place. Not in exact days mind you, because I won’t buy my ticket until I have my visa in hand. But in some form or another, I’ve been counting down since I got my acceptance email from the University of Stirling way back in November 2010. [more...]

    Monday swirls - May 23rd, 2011
    It has been an emotionally and physically exhausting couple of days. From an out-of-the-blue emotional crash on Friday, to marking the anniversary of my marriage on Saturday, to a long day of preparing for The Big Move on Sunday, I’ve just been feeling battered. [more...]

    Expat food woes - May 20th, 2011
    I think that one of the worst things about the life of an expat or repat is dealing with food let-downs. Or is that just me? [more...]

    Specky four eyes - May 11th, 2011
    A lot has changed since I got my first pair of glasses nearly 30 years ago. (That’s glasses as in specs, not drinking vessels, to clarify for my UK readers.) Back then, ‘big’ was normal for glasses. Back then, my frames were massive and wholly dependent on my parents’ budget. [more...]

    What the hook? - May 7th, 2011
    Moving 6,000 miles away means finally clearing out drawers that have long been left cluttered. It also means finding things that you vaguely remember maybe once having for a specific purpose, but can’t quite remember what that purpose was. [more...]

    The flip side - May 6th, 2011
    Hey! Guess what! The transfer of Just Frances is complete and I’m now running on a self-hosted platform. [more...]

    Radio silence - May 5th, 2011
    OK folks, this is it. I’m moving over to a self-hosted platform and won’t be able to post anything for a 24-hour period beginning at 12:01 a.m. tomorrow morning / tonight. (Yes, that means Thursday, May 5.) [more...]

    Ten things - May 3rd, 2011
    It’s another list day. Yay! Today’s list is 10 things I’ve not done in more than a year but that I am going to work hard at doing in the next 12 months. So here goes! [more...]

    Changes afoot [Subscribers: Please take note!] - May 2nd, 2011
    Things are changing here at Just Frances—but you won’t see the changes from your side for a few days yet. You see, I am moving from a Wordpress.com site (free!) to a self-hosted site (which isn’t free, but since I already pay for hosting RyanCentric.com, the move won’t cost me anything extra). [more...]

    Don’t say these things - Apr 6th, 2011
    Maybe you’ve heard me say it before, but when Paul died people said some pretty stupid things to me. And maybe you’ve also heard me mention that I started writing them down because I found it to be therapeutic. [more...]

    Foto fun - Mar 30th, 2011
    This will be a short post, Dear Reader, because I am very sleepy and am going to be early. But I wanted to let you know that I’m having a bit of fun on Facebook in April by way of a Photo Scavenger Hunt. [more...]

    Wallpaper? - Mar 25th, 2011
    I was meant to be scanning old newspaper clippings this evening. But then I got sidetracked playing with Photoshop. So, I guess I’ll need to scan stuff at the weekend. And my procrastination means you get to look at a weird 70s-ish flower thingy. (Wouldn’t this make an awesome wallpaper pattern?) [more...]

    Hopscotch - Mar 7th, 2011
    Like most kids, I played Hopscotch growing up. It was a great game and really only required a piece of chalk. And since they used blackboards in schools back then, chalk was an easy commodity to come by! [more...]

    Wednesday’s child is full of woe - Feb 24th, 2011
    Oh Wednesday, Wednesday, Wednesday. Whatever will I do with you? Wednesday, I want to love you because you symbolize the middle of the work week which means that it’s almost the weekend. [more...]

    100 random things - Feb 17th, 2011
    My friend posted a list of 100 random things her daughter wrote about herself out of boredom and I thought I’d give it a shot and create my own list. So, if you’re not already bored, this should help… [more...]

    Catch a falling star - Feb 9th, 2011
    I was standing in the kitchen making dinner when my foster daughter asked me if I’d ever heard the song “Catch a Grenade” which prompted me to ask if it went something like this. [more...]

    Frosting and graham crackers - Feb 6th, 2011
    Growing up, I used to love it when we had frosting and graham crackers as part of our school lunches. It was awesome! And the lunch ladies normally mixed food colouring in with the frosting so that we’d have green frosting on St. Patrick’s Day, pink on Valentine’s Day, and whatever random colour they wanted to use other times. [more...]

    La-de-da - Feb 2nd, 2011
    Don’t you love it when you’re sitting there minding your own business and all of the sudden—completely out of the blue—an old camp song pops into your head? [more...]

    Just two minutes - Jan 27th, 2011
    I used to be able to sit in complete silence and just be at peace with myself. I used to be able to curl up with a book and focus on only the story I was reading. I used to be able to listen to music and not think of anything other than the sounds coming from the speakers. [more...]

    The life of tiny platelets - Jan 15th, 2011
    A low platelet count means I’m on rest orders from the doctor. My foster daughter is spending the night at a friend’s house. I’m too cheap to pay for cable so I’m watching The Godfather for the gazillionth time. Which means I’m a bit bored silly at the moment. [more...]

    DO open your junk mail! - Jan 9th, 2011
    I hate junk mail. I really do. It’s a waste of resources and a waste of my excitement—because I always get excited when I have mail, and am then disappointed that it’s junk mail. [more...]

    30 things - Jan 6th, 2011
    My friend posted a list of 30 things that make her smile and asked her readers what would be on their list. So, here’s my list! [In no particular order.] [more...]

    Grrr… - Jan 6th, 2011
    I have had one of those really crummy days where I just want to scream and throw a temper tantrum. It’s not one of those days where I am sad and upset about my lot in life; it’s not one of those days where I’m doubtful and frightened about my future. [more...]

    I’m [not] Scottish - Jan 5th, 2011
    I am American, born and bred to American parents. My ancestors are Germans from Russia. This means that I am not, contrary to the insistence of some, Scottish. (But I hope to be one day!) [more...]

    Coccydynia - Jan 3rd, 2011
    Remember how I told you I went cross country skiing last week and didn’t fall once? Well, I wish I had fallen once, because it was the second fall that caused current state of coccydynia. [more...]

    Saving cash; depleting clutter - Jan 3rd, 2011
    Like many of you, I have a habit of taking home soaps and other toiletries from hotels. And, like I’m sure some of you, I never actually use them. Yet, still, I take them. [more...]

    Venice videos - Dec 18th, 2010
    I don’t know what made me start looking at all of these old videos, but I have been and it’s making me smile so I’m sharing them with all of you. [more...]

    How hokey! - Dec 17th, 2010
    I think it was Celeste’s wedding when we started the tradition of doing the Hokey Pokey at Cook Girl weddings. I remember all of us girls standing in line together for a photo and one or two of us started goofing around. [more...]

    A cartridge in a bare tree - Dec 15th, 2010
    Growing up, one of my favourite Christmas decorations was a small twiggy, leafless branch, planted in a little pot and standing 6-8” tall. Hanging from one of the little stick-limbs was a spent bullet casing. [more...]

    It’s all about the unicorns - Dec 7th, 2010
    My foster daughter has this habit of saying “Guess what?” without giving any further clues or context. In the beginning, I would ask for hints or detail, but she would just demand that I guess. And there is no way I’d ever come close so I started to just make up guesses. [more...]

    Kid questions - Nov 18th, 2010
    Kids are great. I love the way they don’t mince words. I called a friend on Tuesday to ask for help after claiming it “Ask for Help Tuesday”. Tuesday was a bad day for me [more...]

    Feeling dotty - Nov 9th, 2010
    I’m still struggling with the sadness that came over me yesterday. Not in an “I’m still sad” way but in a “Big episodes of grief really wipe me out” way. So I decided I’d take it easy and doodle for a bit after dinner. [more...]

    Just a doodlin’ - Nov 5th, 2010
    I love to doodle. So today, as I sat waiting for a meeting that took forever to get started, I found myself doodling a bit. The meeting’s theme of social media use seems to have come across in my doodle, too. [more...]

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