Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Mickey O' Neil

Mickey is our dog. Many of you who are reading this know him or of him. He is very well trained and has a great personality. We lost him for over a day. He left us at 8am on Monday morning and we finally found him today at noon. He had made it to the NC State Campus and was picked up by someone. Thankfully they dropped him off at a vet clinic and they sent him to the SPCA shelter where we had put a lost dog report in.

I felt a sort of sadness yesterday as the time he was away grew longer; but not until this morning did I truly feel the dread that he was gone. He hadn't come home. We searched a bunch yesterday, put the missing reports in, and put up the lost dog add. Lisa felt bad for leaving the door open and we all were afraid that he would not come home again. He is a special creature. He is the mischievous dog that steals the cats food, sneaks a snack from the little kids hands and jumps on visitors with dirty paws, but he is a great part of our family and I am very happy to have him home. Like a lot of other relationships in my life, I have not invested enough time with him, centered around him, and not myself.

Sunday, April 26, 2009


Since I've moved to Raleigh I've met a great number of people. We have a growing number of friends every day. Lisa and I really felt a loss of community leaving Las Vegas. We did not expect to have a good group of friends here in Raleigh so quickly. I also did not expect to be so near to family.

I have many relatives here in Raleigh that I didn't know about. Some of us met together last night at my mother's cousins home in Durham, NC. My mom's brother was also visiting from Florida (his daughter lives here as well). The family has a lot of interesting history and so a lot of conversation revolved around years past. It made me happy. I haven't seen any of them for so many years and yet I felt at home.

What is the draw that pulls us to the table to talk about our stories and share our lives together? There's something special about it and more so with family than anyone else.

From my small vantage point it may be a mute observation or a slap in the face to those who have no family or a bad relationship with family, but I've also experienced this same emotion when around friends who were as close as family. Either way I believe it's spiritual. Those who are looking to connect on a deeper level will do so by sharing there lives with each other and not being afraid to connect with those who happen across their path. We are fortunate to have family here and look forward to sharing our lives together.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Raleigh, NC

Our move to North Carolina was an interesting journey. It started a little over a year ago. A friend I'd met in Phoenix while learning to build guitars called me and said that a great storefront had opened up by NC State. He said it would be worth checking out. So on a whim I flew out to NC and checked it out. We deliberated for a couple days; I flew back to Vegas. After a week Lisa and I had basically decided against it. I'm not 100% sure what the turning point was but within the next few days we both had a strong feeling that we should do it. And so we began the test of nerves and patience. To this day I don't know how we managed to do it all and keep our sanity. I was making trips back and forth to help remodel the store. Lisa was pregnant and working full time. Howard was working non stop trying to get the store finished up while I wasn't there. Some of his closest friends and his dad helped him constantly. At the time we both were building guitars for store inventory and we had to get all the other inventory together which meant searching for cool used stuff and setting up dealer agreements with manufacturers. Not to mention the signs, advertising, security, insurance, permits, the list goes on. I had no idea the amount of time that would go into just opening the doors. Our family was also getting ready to move 2000 miles across the country. Serenity and I, with our cat and dog, drove the long haul in our Honda. Lisa and Sara flew out a few days after we left. We had my truck shipped and a moving company haul the trailer that we packed. We could not have done it without the help of many of our friends in Las Vegas and I will always be thankful for you all. We miss you.

That being said, I'm so glad that we did it. Now the store's open and we are working hard to keep it open. Raleigh is a great place to live. We've met a bunch of great people here. Our neighbors are awesome. I walk to work. Lisa can be at home with Sara for the moment and Serenity will be in a school with an orchestra this coming year. I have quite a bit of family in Raleigh that I didn't even know lived here (my family is gigantic in numbers). We are getting together with them this coming Saturday.

At the moment it's a little scary to look at what we left behind. Amazing friends, health insurance, steady income, job security...but the move was the right thing to do and I don't regret it. It has been a great 6 months and I hope we can sustain our simple lifestyle here for years to come.

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Blog Blog Blog

For a while I was not in any mood to blog. I got tired of it. I'm not sure if I'll continue blogging. I was inspired by Joe Boyd who sent me an invite to the blog network on facebook. I recently met someone who sends newly published books to bloggers for them to read and blog about. It's a unique way to promote new material and I think once in a while I'll do that.