Life’s good here in Idaho. I’m sorry it was such a mild winter. I worry about the dry forests and drought… however it is nice to see sunshine. Today was the first day it was warm enough to enjoy sitting on the balcony of my new apartment.
I quit making videos and writing in this blog last October, because when I got back from my long bike ride I got depressed because winter was coming. Winter means that I have to accept rides from people to get to the store because I have no car. Summer means I can be more independent. I wanted to keep riding the bike, but I won’t ride when the road could be icy. Too scary.
In December my upstairs neighbors played Christmas music on their stereo, and it was loud enough that I could hear it in my apartment. That was a problem for me because I have to work at home, writing, and that kind of never-ending sound is very annoying. It finally got so bad that I told the manager of the apartments, and she offered me a different apartment on the top floor.
I was ecstatic. That’s where I wanted to live when I first moved to Idaho, but the original manager gave me only one choice – a ground floor apartment next to the apartment house main entrance, facing the parking lot. I was one day away from being homeless without a car so I took what she offered, gratefully. But it was like living in a fishbowl. I couldn’t keep my windows open at night, and if the shades were up people getting out of their cars in the parking lot could look inside. After a while I didn’t care if they could look inside. I needed the light.
My moving experience turned out amazing. On the 19th of January five friends I know from Bible studies came here and helped move all my boxes and small furniture. Then the next day, two strong young men from my church came to move the heavier furniture. I felt so loved and blessed to get so much help from friends.
My new apartment on the top floor is wonderful. I have a view of the mountains from my office window, and everything about this apartment is better. I love my neighbors – they are so friendly and everyone seems happier here. Myself included. It is very quiet and peaceful. That’s what I need, to get more work done. Lots of peace.
After I got here I realized what a blessing I’ve received. Honestly, I was perfectly happy in my other apartment. I had my extra bedroom set up as a “library” there and felt so blessed to have a comfy reading space in a room full of books. I loved it, and had no intention of ever moving out. And about my upstairs neighbors, I love them too. The fact that their loud music was what upset me enough to leave has nothing to do with my friendship with them. They are awesome people.
Still – I found myself agitated and desperate because I couldn’t work in that environment so when the manager offered me the other apartment it was like someone splashing cold water on me on a hot arid day. Shocking, but welcome!
After I moved and got used to all the wonderful and better aspects of my new apartment with the view of the mountains, I realized that the entire series of events was a gift from God, because I never get upset and agitated here in Idaho and the fact that I was doing so and became desperate about my situation was very unusual. It only lasted about an hour, but because of that bad feeling I was compelled to seek change.
It has been an amazing change. I have a nice two bedroom apartment and it feels like a peaceful retreat in a secluded location, after my year and a half living next to the front entrance. One of the bedrooms is set off to the side down a hallway and around the corner so when I come into my office it really is like leaving the rest of the dwelling to be in a more private place. I’m getting a lot of work done here, and I’m finding it much easier to keep up with my family rights online advocacy and am starting a new website, Bennachti, which is a web magazine (mainly for women). I’m transferring a lot of my old articles that once were on Squidoo to the new site, and writing new articles, and am making good progress at that which gives me hope that my income will increase again. (I had a huge dip in income due to the failure of the Squidoo site starting in 2012.)
Right now I can’t go out to church or Bible studies because of an injury, so I’m hosting two Bible studies here in my apartment. In the afternoon we have the women’s Bible study, where we’re studying a Kay Arthur book: Lord, Is It Warfare? Teach Me To Stand.
About our study of this book: we started studying it last spring when the women’s Bible studies were still being held at the church in Washington. Unfortunately, our weekly meetings began to become fellowship opportunities more than study sessions, and we didn’t make much progress with the book. I realized that the problem was probably the topic of the book. It is a book about Satan, and spiritual warfare. I believe Satan didn’t want us to read it so we spent too much time chatting and not enough reading, and eventually quit using the book entirely, moving on to watching a movie version of the gospel of Matthew.
When the leader of that group quit recently, the new leader (a close friend of mine), changed the time and location (it now meets in my apartment) and we all decided we wanted to go back to studying this book. This time we’ll probably get through it.
Anyhow, after our afternoon women’s Bible study, we have a dinner break and most of the women go home. Then two men arrive (one of them is my close friend’s husband, and the other one attends their church) and we have a “home group” Bible study. This week we’re going to start a new book: Know What You Believe by Paul Little. There’s a companion volume, Know Why You Believe . . . we will probably get to that one after our summer break.
As I said before, I’ve got an injury that’s keeping me indoors these days. Unfortunately it is my foot that’s causing some pain. It started last spring and summer when I did a lot of walking… before I got my new bicycle. I don’t know if it is a repetitive stress injury or cuboid syndrome or something else, but at this point it often hurts severely and I know it won’t get better so long as I keep walking on it.
So, I’m grounded, for the time being. I know it will get better – but when? I can’t go see a podiatrist because my “Affordable Care Act” insurance was cancelled because they decided I don’t earn enough money. I fell into the “health care gap” here in Idaho, which means I don’t earn enough for the “Affordable Care” tax credit, but also won’t qualify for Medicaid until I’m 65. Besides, just the logistics of getting to a doctor’s office is difficult because I have no car and there’s no bus system out here in the countryside.
Yesterday during my morning prayer and Bible study time I realized why God is allowing this to happen to me. I needed to spend more time at home so I could have the peace of mind I need to get more work done on my family rights website. That is the most important work I could be doing now. I’m working on a new listing system for attorneys who work on CPS cases…. plus there’s always lots of administrative work to do there.
I also have the goal of adding one new article daily to my Bennachti web magazine because I desperately need to build that up as a source of income.
On top of that I’ve decided to do a complete overhaul on Happy Camp News for my friend, Judy. I’ve installed a new theme for that site and am now working on revisions for the category system. I’m spending only a few hours a week on that. There’s lots more work to do but eventually it will be a much nicer website. The story there is that I originally created that site in 2001 and was owner/publisher of the news in Happy Camp until 2007 when I sold it to Judy. She’s still my close friend (we exchange emails frequently) and I’d like to get all this done before she retires from her school job, so she’ll have a nicer site to work on.
Oh, speaking of Happy Camp. I love getting news from my friends there. I see them on Facebook where I’m admin of a Happy Camp group, and I get phone calls occasionally from Dennis the giant dreamcatcher creator. Sometimes it feels like I still live there even though I moved 700 miles away.
I also get a phone call about once a month from my ex-boyfriend, Keith. He’s now living in Florida with his ex-wife and her husband. This seems to be working out well for them; praise the Lord! (He needed a place to call home.)
Okay, this was a long post. I had a lot of catching up to do. I hope to start making videos again soon.