Five Photos & Stories Challenge: Road to Hana Mishap – Photo/Story #1

My buddy, Rob of The V-Pub invited me to a 5 day challenge to join the Five Photos, Five Stories Challenge: “Post a photo each day for five consecutive days and attach a story to the photo. It can be fiction or non-fiction, a poem or a short paragraph and each day nominate another blogger for the challenge”.

Here’s my go at it!

Because+we+lost+the+keys+to+the+rental%2C+we+hitched+a+ride+from+a+SCHOOL+BUS%21+You+know+that+no+bus+driver+in+Fla+or+DC%2FVA+would+ever+let+some+smelly+strangers+hop+aboard+a+bus+full+of+7+year+olds%21This particular picture cracks me up. Grayheart and I honeymooned in Hawaii and did the Road to Hana in Maui. We rented a Jeep and began our adventure searching for waterfalls. We saw some of the most gorgeous natural pools, waterfalls and vegetation I’d ever seen in my life.

In one of the stops, we dove into a body of water and enjoyed the refreshing swim. We got back into our vehicle only to realize we couldn’t find the keys to start it! (We’d left the doors unlocked, which you think we would’ve been smart enough to just leave the keys hidden in there somewhere….) We finally figured – after an exhaustive search of the area – that the keys fell out of his swim trunks when we went for our swim.

This was back in 2005, so we didn’t have a cell phone that we traveled with so we then took an hour and a half long walk into the next town to find a payphone. This is a pretty remote destination so it’s not like there were restaurants or hangout spots to easily find a phone. We manage to call the rental car company, which advised that the quickest they could get a spare set to us (due to how far into the highway we were) would be about 4-5 hours. That meant we had to walk our honeymooning arses back to the Jeep and wait outside the car (as night would begin to fall) until the rental company arrived.

We must have look like a dejected pathetic mess of a couple walking this desolate road because as we were trekking through our return to the car, a school bus passed us, stopped and reversed to ask if we were ok! The bus driver kindly offered us a ride back to our spot since it was along the way. We were flabbergasted! The bus was filled with 7-8 year old kids! We graciously accepted the offer and the kids were thrilled to have us as passengers with them! We played games and sang along with these kids and truly felt blessed to have been able to have this unique experience. We were dropped off (which looked really funny, I’m sure to the few tourists that were at the waterfall we came back to) and received the greatest hugs and goodbyes ever! We then sat back in the natural setting and laughed the entire time we were there waiting for our relief. We were eaten alive by mosquitoes but,truthfully, the whole thing was so bizarre and fun, we didn’t care.

Hawaii remains one of my favorite destinations. If you are adventurous and ever get an opportunity, the Road to Hana is as close to hidden paradise as you can find. Just make sure you properly care for your keys!

So, now I’m to nominate someone to take on this challenge… I nominate Gary of Skipah’s Realm.  One of the coolest, humble and supportive men/dads around.  Gary, I hope you accept!

Thanks, Rob of the V-Pub, for inviting me to do this!!

I’ve resurfaced… here’s an update on what’s been going on!

I have been working daily and come home exhausted so hitting the computer is often the last thing I want to do.  And my thumbs kill me if I try to write an entire post from my phone!  So I’m going to write a mini update on what’s going on in my life.  I apologize in advance if it’s not the highest caliber of writing or the most visually appealing post.

  • It’s been a birthday bonanza!  We’ve celebrated She-ra, me, my mom, my grandfather’s and Captain’s birthday all in the last three weeks!  It’s been an absolute blast but I’m SO over cake!   
  • Grayheart and I are still on amicable terms.  I know he’s still seeing Raggedy.  I just don’t care.  We’ve been working on our divorce paperwork and the only thing that really has me on edge is the custodial arrangement.  He wants 50/50 and I am terrified of that notion. I suppose it’s a good problem to have… A father that adores his kids. But it’s hard to think I wouldn’t have my kids as frequent as I have them now.  He seems to be open now to different possibilities after doing more research on custody scenarios for such young children.
  • Captain – If there was anything in my life right now that could be described as perfect, he would be it.  We’ve seen each other every 2-3 days, had amazing dates (dinners, paint notes, even just sitting in Krispy Kreme parking lot), gone away for a two day trip together to Disney World and Islands of Adventure  (where he asked me to be his girlfriend), and last night he told me that he loves me.  This man is so incredibly sexy and attentive and genuine and kind hearted and loving… I just cannot believe that I’ve been blessed with a man this wonderful to me.  And I actually really really care for him back.  It’s such a nice, easy affectionate relationship.  I think I love him as much as I am capable of right now.  I know he’s worried that he is a rebound relationship for me.  I would like to think this is not true and that we are just incredibly lucky to find each other.  I suppose only time will tell.  I can say, though, that I am the happiest I’ve ever been with a man.  And it’s an amazing feeling.     
  • I’ve not been running more than once a week so I feel like crap. I’m gonna get back on track though. It’s such a yucky feeling and exercising really helps mind, body and soul.
  • My old job (in real estate) contacted me today inquiring as to whether or not I’d be interested in returning in a part time capacity. Not sure how I feel about this since I have virtually no details. I will do lunch with my old boss next week and learn more.   

So there you go! I’ve included some pictures of our dinners and outings.  (Feel free to inquire about any of these.). Lots of stuff in the last 3 weeks.  I know that I’m incredibly lucky and have much to be grateful for.

Today’s Motto:  I’m loved and lucky.  And I really feel like I deserve it.  It’s so nice to be in this phase of life rather than where I was 9 months ago. ❤️ 

Saturday in Miami

We’ve had such amazing weather these past few weeks. Blue skies, nice breeze, weather in the 60s/70sF…. Went for a run with a friend this morning by Biscayne Bay. Had such a great time I though I’d post a picture of my view this morning. It’s nothing spectacular but it made me appreciate being able to do this during winter.

Feliz fin de semana! Wishing you all a wonderful weekend!

Xo Athena

Tired of being tired

Last few days I feel a bit defeated.

The Disney weekend was fun in that the kids had a great time and I had a wonderful experience with marathon weekend. But Grayheart and I were not exactly friendly with each other. We bickered a bit; I could see how annoyed he’d get with things I did. And, of course, he irritated the crap out of me with his moodiness. I’m sure Raggedy gave him a hard time which affected his attitude toward me.

I can’t help but feel that his irritation with me stems from two things: 1) my anger and resentment of him, which I’m just quiet and cool toward him and 2) Raggedy is everything I’m not. She’s the easy, happy, sweet, carefree girl thrilled to see him and make him feel good. In his mind, I’m sure I’m the bitter and absent minded wife nagging about the kids holding onto resentment and baggage… It’s as if it’s being used against me. And that makes me sad because I don’t deserve the hostility.

Raggedy gets one dimension of him. It’s easy to fall for someone like her that has no responsibilities and isn’t bitter as a result. Just makes me mad because it’s an alternate reality. It’s paradise when life outside of it is challenging and grainy. It’s not a bad life but it’s life filled with kids screaming, frustrations, arguments, change and imperfections. Life.

And I’m bitter that he gets to have that pleasure while I’m sad and trying to put myself back together.

Today’s Mantra: Just keep it together.

Reflecting on Narcissism: much less than just a pretty face

I think Grayheart has NPD tendencies. I don’t think I can say he is a full blown Narcissist but certain traits fall under the descriptions I read.

Lucky Otters Haven


Narcissism is a disorder named after Narcissus, a young hunter who, according to Greek mythology, fell so much in love with his own reflection staring back at him in a pool of water, that he fell in the pool and drowned.

In actuality, while some narcissists are as vain as our Greek god, most would not necessarily fit the stereotype of a physically vain person. My narcissistic mother is vain, but my ex-husband is anything but. In fact, he cares very little about his physical appearance. Narcissists look like anyone else–it’s their actions and behavior that give them away.

Another misunderstanding about narcissists is that they love themselves. They don’t. People who love themselves are people who know who they are, and are a pleasure to be around. But narcissists don’t hate themselves either, at least not in the same way a neurotic individual with a poor self image hates…

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Credit Card Fraud, Theft & The Kite Runner

My credit card company called me this morning to investigate a questionable charge on my credit card.  Seems that someone in another part of the country ran out of gas and decided to stop at a 7-11 and use my identity to fill up. ($&%!)

The charges, of course, will be taken care of by my credit card company but it’s still a pain in the arse to deal with.  Not the biggest deal in the world but things like this often remind me of just how petty and inconsiderate stealing is.

Which leads me to reflect on one of my favorite quotes in The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini:

“Now, no matter what the mullah teaches, there is only one sin, only one. And that is theft. Every other sin is a variation of theft. Do you understand that?”  […]

“When you kill a man, you steal a life,” Baba said. “You steal his wife’s right to a husband, rob his children of a father. When you tell a lie, you steal someone’s right to the truth. When you cheat, you steal the right to fairness. Do you see?” […]

“There is no act more wretched than stealing, Amir,” Baba said. “A man who takes what’s not his to take, be it a life or a loaf of naan…I spit on such a man. And if I ever cross paths with him, God help him. Do you understand?”

I love this book and couldn’t agree more with what Baba teaches Amir!

(*Cracking my knuckles as I think about the moment I ever run into Raggedy Ann.*)

Merry Christmas!

I have been busy with company and the holidays but I wanted to share a quick thank you.

I do a lot of complaining here but I’m very thankful for all that I have. I may be going through a rough time with my separation but I do know that I am a very lucky gal in every other way.

I am grateful for the love and support of my family and friends as well as the new friendships and well wishes of the online community I’ve now befriended. Thank you for allowing me a way to voice my grief and giving me the support I’ve needed.

Many blessings to you all and I hope you’ve had a Merry Christmas and/or wonderful holiday season! 🎄

PS – My cousin surprised me with the Christmas NKOTB CD… Lol! I used to LOVE them as a kid!! ❤️

This brought tears to my eyes… Reblog – Confession: I’m In Love With Another Woman

I came across this blog post Confession: I’m In Love With Another Woman and just started to tear up as I read it.  The love this gentleman has for his wife.  No, the appreciation of the changes that people go through with age and time… that’s what really touched me.  That after 29 years of marriage – and I’m sure plenty of obstacles – Mitch and his wife continued to stay focused on changing together and loving one another for that.  I hope to one day find that.  Bless them for it.  It’s inspiring to hear that profound love  exists.


Arguing in front of the kids

I’m venting right now…

I argued with Grayheart over the phone last night about some changes he was trying to throw at me with our schedule. There was no cursing or personal attacks flung but it was intense and it was done in front of the kids. We hung up after 10 minutes of this and agreed to discuss later.

My daughter then asked him that night why I was so angry. And if he was angry as well. 😔 She heard everything. 😁

I still feel terrible about it. It’s not the end of the world but I still can’t help it. I put unnecessary stress on her. I will do better next time.

Today’s Mantra: Remember to not argue in front of the kids!! It’s not worth the consequences.