Happy Birthday Tejas!

Tejas turns 57 in a week.

And although most people don’t understand it, he happens to be my best friend.

In the three years that I’ve known him, we have been on many adventures together.

Three Burning Mans.

Five SoulFires.

One unSCruz.

And countless parties.

He has kept me company on the long drive to Santa Rosa to visit my birthfamily.

And he accompanied me during my research into nude resorts.

Tough job, eh?


So for his birthday I got him something special.

You know how he likes to wear Burning Man pendants?

Well, I purchased a pendant for him from a small studio in Bali.

It’s a steampunk pendant loosely based on an ancient Mayan calendar design, which is perfect since Tejas has some Mayan in him.

I think he will LOVE it.

So to my bestie, I wish you a very happy birthday!

There’s no one I’d rather burn with than you.

Even though you drive me crazy at times. . .

Over The Moon

I turned d­­­­own a date today.

Not because it didn’t sound great.

It sounded very nice.

And not because I don’t find the guy attractive.

Actually, he’s at the far end of the handsome scale.

I know!

What was I thinking?

Well, I’ll tell you.

I was thinking of The Swede.

I was thinking how much I want to make him coffee in the morning.

And roll over in bed to see his face.

And I was thinking about how much I miss hugging him.

And kissing him.

There’s a whole lot of things I miss about The Swede.

How quiet he is until you get to know him.

How dedicated he is to his children.

How much of a prankster he is.

And so, for the first time EVER, I’m finally admitting I am OVER THE MOON for The Swede.



One of my FAVORITE things I did in Sweden was visit a cheese shop in Gamla Stan (Old Town) with The Swede.

The way to my heart is not through sweets but through CHEESE!

The Swede and I decided to have a nice cheese tray after dinner, complete with a selection of wine.

[Now, being on a diet, it makes me DROOL to think of cheese and wine!]

We stepped into a small store in Stockholm and I was overwhelmed with the smell of aging cheese.

Funky yet yummy.


We selected a cheese, sampled it and approved of it.

Then another.

And another.

All in all, we selected 5 cheeses of varying degrees of softness, ripeness, and gooeyness.

All VERY delicious.

Then we went to the SPECIAL store to buy wine.

In case you didn’t know, only one chain of stores, which I think are run by the government, can sell liquor.

So we go inside and The Swede tells me he wants SWEET white wine.


Each wine had a label that graphically represented how sweet that wine was.

And I ready the graphic BACKWARDS.

So instead of getting sweet white wine, we got regular white wine.

Ah well.

I think The Swede forgave me.

New Body

I’m celebrating.

Just a little bit.

In two weeks, I’ve lost 10 pounds.

I’d call that a successful diet.

And the weight loss is well deserved, since I’ve given up chewing, flavor, and booze.

Last week I was a little miffed that I only lost 2.2 pounds.

Then again, I did eat a grilled cheese sandwich and cream of artichoke/green chili soup.

This week I cheated by sipping two gin and tonics while eating some roast beef and spinach dip on a slice of sourdough bread.

Bad Michelle!

Despite the 10 pound weight loss, I don’t really see a difference in my body.

My guess is that I will need to lose 20 pounds before I start seeing a difference.

We can start with the double chin and move on to the tummy.

But PLEASE, leave the boobs alone!

I still have a LONG WAY to go.

Like 90 – 120 more pounds.

It hardly seems possible that I could lose that much weight.

That’s like an ENTIRE person’s worth of weight!

My friend, The Photographer, has been really supportive of my weight loss.

At a time when I feel undesirable and frumpy, he has reminded me that I am a sexy, beautiful woman.

So I’m just going to hold on to that as I try to squeeze my feet into shoes that don’t fit and shave parts of my body which are hidden from view.

Cross your fingers and say a prayer that the weight keeps coming off.

I’m really excited to reveal a new body!


The Bay Area is filled with engineers, on account of all the tech companies that set up shop in Silicon Valley.

When I was online dating, my bread and butter dates were usually engineers.

Indeed, my best friend is an engineer himself.

I greatly admire engineers, although I usually can’t even begin to grasp what they do for a living.


Something to do with customer technical account management.

The Swede?

Cloud computing.

My brother?

Augmented reality.

For someone who is decidedly right-brained, I’m impressed that I can even tell you that much.

Personally, I want to wind up with a left-brained person, to balance me out.

Someone grounded and logical.

Good at math and finances.

However, he also needs to be open to other-worldly experiences like Burning Man and regional burns.

I’m quite certain there are men who exist who match this criteria.

I meet TONS of men at Burning Man who have left-brained jobs in the Default World but who are also creative and open-minded.

Does The Swede fit my idea of an ideal man?

Well, I’ve never seen him balance his checkbook, but I did see him get dressed up at unSCruz.

And I’m pretty sure he enjoyed himself.

So I’d say he’s an excellent candidate.

Plus, I like him.

I may not understand what he does for a living, but I certainly like the stabilizing force he brings to my life.

Hopefully, he appreciates the little bit of chaos I introduce into his life. . .




Crash and burn

Out of the blue I got a message from someone I met on Tinder a year ago.

“Where in the world are you?” he asked.

Odd question.

“At work,” I replied.

“I was in Denmark a few weeks ago and you popped up on Tinder. It said you were only a few hundred miles away,” he queried.

“Oh, I was in Sweden visiting friends,” I told him.

He then asked me to come back so that I could go skiing with him in Austria or Switzerland.


I don’t ski.

Never learned and I think it’s a skill best learned when you’re younger and fearless.

I told him as much.

Well lo-and-behold he used to be a ski instructor at Squaw Valley in the winter. He can teach me to ski.

No thanks, I can passably snowboard.


The last time I snowboarded I broke my tailbone.

“So you don’t want to come boarding with me? We can hit the slopes during the day and explore other activities in the evening.. . .” he hinted.

“No thanks,” I replied.

“I’ll leave you alone then,” he responded.


Sorry but this girl only travels halfway around the world to meet her Swede, not some random dude I exchanged a few text messages with on Tinder a year ago.

Momma didn’t raise no fool.


Bear with me because I feel a rant coming on.

I’ve been a Pinterest member for ages now.

Since back when you had to APPLY to be a member.

It’s been a great way to organize the things I come across on the internet.

And I’ve used it a great deal for collecting Burning Man ideas – on fashion, survival, food, art, photography, etc.

I have loved Pinterest like a beauty addict loves Sephora.

But then I went and did something.

I clicked on an animal rescue story.

Just once.

And now my feed is FILLED with animal rescue stories.

Each one showing a pitiful little creature near death.

I am compelled to click on each one to make sure that the cat or dog is now happy and healthy with a loving family and a warm home.

Every time I am in tears.

Seriously, who cuts off an animal’s feet?

Or chains a pregnant dog in a forest to die?

I don’t know what to do to get rid of all these sad stories.

And maybe it’s saying something about me that I need to look the other way.

But I can’t handle the suffering.

And now my stream is filled with these stories.



I’m trying to talk The Swede into letting me take him and his daughter to the smörgåsbord in The Verandan at The Grand Hôtel in Stockholm.

It’s billed online as “the best smörgåsbord in Sweden.”

And it seems like a quintessential experience we should all have in Stockholm.

I can’t help but think of my foodie sister Lisa, and how much she would TOTALLY LOVE going to the smörgåsbord with me.

When we went to Scotland a decade ago, she practically LIVED at the restaurant The Ubiquitous Chip.

Some of her foodie ways have rubbed off on me.

I mean, I like eating street food and café food as much as the next person, but there’s something about having tables of colorful food options that just gets my blood pumping, and my juices flowing.

Check out some of these pictures:

The trick will be taking public transportation or a taxi to/from their home to The Grand Hôtel so that I can share a bottle of champagne or snaps with The Swede.  Sweden has some pretty strict drunk driving rules (BAC 0.02%) so we’ll have to plan for that.

What better way to thank The Swede and his daughter for accommodating me than to take them to The Grand Hotel?

I sure hope they like it!

2018 Resolutions

MichelleEvery new year, I make resolutions which I rigidly adhere to for the next week before TOTALLY IGNORING THEM until the next new year rolls around.

This year I’m making new year’s resolutions I know I can keep:

  1.  Drink more beer.  Sure, it’s like liquid bread but it’s tasty and I like it and it has less alcohol than mixed drinks (which I am prone to consuming).  So DRINK MORE BEER!
  2. Spend more time with family and friends.  Surrounding myself with people who love me is NEVER a bad thing.
  3. Watch more Supernatural.  Jensen and Jared have my heart <3.
  4. Write more.  Blog.  Be honest and transparent.  Even when it means admitting to receiving a “facial.”  *facepalm
  5. Be unapologetic about my life experiences.  They have made me who I am.  The good, the bad, and the wild and crazy make me, ME!
  6. Go to UnSCruz.  Bring The Swede!
  7. Be open to dating men who fall outside my usual parameters (40 something year old lumberjacks).
  8. Say yes to new experiences more often.  No one likes a stagnant woman.  Grow.  Perpetually.
  9. Take care of the people closest to me – my sons, my parents, and my siblings.  LIFE IS FLEETING so ENJOY WHAT YOU HAVE RIGHT NOW.  I mean RIGHT NOW!
  10. Love more.  Love easily.  This world will not suffer for a little more love in it.

Adios 2017!

How do I feel about 2017?

I’m ready to bring on 2018, that’s how I feel.

In 2017 I had to put down my dog.

That was a difficult and sad time.

I also applied for, and lost, two jobs: one I was excited about and one I was less than excited about.

So perhaps it’s for the best, though it hurt both times to be rejected.

2017 wasn’t all bad though.

I went to unSCruz with The Swede and had a lot of fun.

And, of course, I am in Sweden right now visiting The Swede.

I travelled to Burning Man in 2017 and had a fantastic time so there’s that too.

But there was also a WHOLE YEAR OF #45’s antics and quite honestly I have had my fill of that charlatan.

Three more years? Good grief!

2018 brings some promise.

I will continue to look for another position at work so there’s potential for growth there.

And, once again, I am going to unSCruz AND Burning Man, not to mention that highly anticipated spring Pagan Bunny Burn.

I also start my medical weight management program which I’m not REALLY looking forward to except for how much healthier I will be on the program.

So there’s that.

Overall, I can say adios to 2017 and welcome in 2018 with an open mind and an open heart.

I’m looking forward to the coming year.