Somewhere Over the Technicolor Rainbow

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Last Friday we headed for Alpine Valley, Lake Tahoe, a five-hour-long drive from our home. Minutes after this selfie was taken in our ancient Subaru Forester’s back seat, one of my daughters unloaded a “Technicolor rainbow” all over the place. I sat next to her. Suffice it to say, my smile wouldn’t be seen again for some time.

Suffice it to say, my smile wouldn’t be seen again for some time.

I was enormously relieved when she said she felt better, but during the rest of the trek, I was on the verge of doing the same thing. It was one of the most miserable journeys of my life, and when we pulled up to The Munchkin cabin, I nearly kissed the snowy ground in relief!

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We rent The Munchkin each year and if I won the lottery, I’d convince the owner to sell it to me. Seven years ago my husband Craig found this rental on Craigslist , appropriately enough. The cost was extremely reasonable for pricey Lake Tahoe, but we had no idea how nice this place was until we pulled up to the steep front staircase. Our mouths dropped at our good fortune.

Since then, Craig befriended the owner and she has dropped the rent for us, making this stay incredibly affordable, especially because Craig makes this a working vacation.   

The Munchkin is modest compared to the nouveau-riche McMansions that dot the street, the neighborhood…and virtually all of Lake Tahoe! Unfortunately, the older, quaint cabins are becoming a thing of the past. I prefer cozy to cavernous any day.

We’ve enjoyed The Munchkin during the summer and winter, and Lucy loves being here no matter what the season.

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 Don’t let Lucy’s pensive expression fool you – this dog has a complete blast romping around in the snow. 

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This is the view from the deck where I’ve written my book Birth of a New Brain – Healing from Postpartum Bipolar Disorder almost every summer we’ve come here, except when my bipolar depression was so horrible I couldn’t do much of anything. 

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Right after I snapped this shot, the girls got into a vicious snowball fight – what else is snow good for?

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This giant Santa greeted me when I walked to the top of the street. This photo doesn’t do his size justice – trust me, he’s BIG!

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My older daughter loves to cook and bake on snowy days. Here she’s putting the finishing touches on lemon meringue cups. Unlike me, she isn’t a chocoholic, which is a blessing because if she made chocolate-anything, I’d eat the entire batch.

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I took these mountain shots during one of my daily late afternoon hikes. In the summer I must watch out for bears, which makes for a rather unsettling hiking experience.

I’ve even had a bear encounter in The Munchkin (to read more about that, check out the post “Bears, Shrinks, and Mindfulness”) and I take bears very seriously! But now that it’s cold and the bears are fast asleep, I can put that worry to rest, well, for the most part. Thanks to the guide Bear Aware, I know what to do in case I come across a bear.

As far as my book’s editing is concerned, I haven’t made much progress yet. Due to a glitch, I had to sit tight and wait for my publisher to fix the file filled with copyedits and assorted questions. I received the file last night and I’ll begin working on it today. We don’t have internet at the Munchkin, so it’s off to the Crest Café this morning where I’ll download the file, gulp hard, pass out (just kidding) and put my nose to the grindstone.

I can’t write this post without mentioning the loss of Carrie Fisher, her mother Debbie Reynolds, and George Michael – they have all been on my mind. I still can’t believe they’re gone, and I’m glad there have been so many insightful blog posts and articles written about their lives.

Only two weeks ago I sent a letter to Carrie Fisher’s staff about her participating in a World Bipolar Day project. I never thought in a zillion years that she wouldn’t be here to ring in the new year. My heart goes out to her daughter Billie, her brother Todd, and the rest of her family and fans.

I wish you a Happy New Year, my friends! Please take good care of yourselves and your loved ones.

Love,

Dyane

 

Dyane’s memoir Birth of a New Brain – Healing from Postpartum Bipolar Disorder with a foreword by Dr. Carol Henshaw (co-author of The Modern Management of Perinatal Psychiatry) will be published by Post Hill Press in October 2017.

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26 thoughts on “Somewhere Over the Technicolor Rainbow

  1. I wonder if I’m caught up yet! At least I know where to find you! Gosh, having an editor in your head all the time…wonk, wonk wonk.

    The Trump thing has finally settled in along w/nasty case of bipolar depression. It’s good to know other people continue on with their lives despite the ups and downs.

    They think I might have Sjogren’s. Genetically, it’s an automatic. Whatever. Hard as hell getting an appointment with a local rheumatologist for whatever test.

    Don’t let your stomache ache get you down.

    1. Thanks so much, my dear! It’s a beautiful place, but wow, snow living is not for the weak! 😉 I think I prefer milder climes, even if there’s a bit more boring! Happy belated New Year, my lovely Michelle!

    1. We’re still here, it’s our last day, and you should see all the snow, Kitt! It’s the most I’ve ever seen here, and it’s scary as hell to drive in it, but so far, so good – I haven’t cracked up the car. Lucy has been having the best time of all. She absolutely loves to play in the snow and it’s enormous fun for her to catch snowballs in her mouth, unlike yours truly! 😉 Hope you had a good New Year’s Eve, and I send you a big, belated Happy New Years hug, my dear. Love you Kitt!!!!!

      1. I slept New Year’s Eve. Not the wild woman I once was. Big hugs. Got to finish your latest post. Started to read it, then realized it was about time for me to write a post. It’s almost been a month since I have!

    1. I’m so happy you enjoyed this post, my sweet Merry!
      We’re on our last day in Tahoe, and I’m writing you from the Crest Cafe, home of some of the yummiest muffins ever. The cookies aren’t too shabby either!I hope you had a good New Year’s Eve and I wish you a wonderful 2017, full of joyful surprises. Sending you lots of love, your Honey Pot!!!!!

  2. Dear captain, I fairy tell that stomach murk to up and disappear with immediate effect. Didn’t it read this post and see your smile, and Lucy’s demeanour, and big Santa and the girls? And so cute your daughter loves to bake… And em cool it ain’t chocolate stuff now given where most of her culinary endeavors would have ended up… Ok now, start trying to enjoy to Munchkin mindless of any distractions like even the edits… They’re gonna survive till Jan 4 either way 🙂

    1. Hey friend, I finally can access the internet at this Crest Cafe n Tahoe. It’s our last day, and when we get hone over the weekend I’ll get caught up with your posts, that poem email – all of it!!!!! In the meantine, I’ll keep it short-but-sweet, sending you lots and lots of love, eh? Have you been logging on Lose It! lately? I need to check on that!!!!! We gotta get back into our groove XOXOXOXOXO YOU!!!!!!! give my best to that wonder kitty ELLA!!!!

      1. Oh my Lady, woop woop woop there. I am just waiting but I hope you are having the best of your last moments out there in that tahoe lake oh; and yes am still faithful to Lose It and waiting for you guys to get ur groovies back… As for Ella… She’s been voted by us all as the New Madam of the House 🙂 Tell Lucy that and kiss her for me 🙂

  3. Aside from the “technicolor rainbow” it looks like you had a wonderful trip. I am so jealous of all that snow. 80 degree temps at Christmas should be illegal…just sayin’.

    1. Hey Vic, It’s our last day here in Tahoe, and I finally got to a cafe where I can use the internet – I just don’t have the patience to use my cell phone when it comes to commenting on blogs or writing people emails. Craig can do it, but he’s usually more patient than I am when it comes to almost anything!

      ANYWAY, I hope you had a great New Year! We’ve been through a big, ‘ol snowstorm the past 48 hours and while the snow has been a fun change, it stops being fun once the car gets snowed in and it’s impossible to take Lucy out for a simple walk without freezing to death! 😉 80 degrees at X-Mas seems extreme to me too, LOL! Oh well. Here’s to a great 2017 for you, and you know I wish you the absolute best! big (((hugs)))!!!!!

      1. Hey glad hearing from you. Nice to know you aren’t totally snowed in, lol.

        Wishing you and your family a great 2017 too!

  4. I’m glad you’re having such a great time and wow am I ever impressed that you made the effort to go to the café to get some work done. Good on you, my friend

    1. Here’s a belated thank-you for your kind comment, my friend! We’re still here and I’m writing you from the Crest Cafe, hone of the super-yummy muffins and – gasp chocolate cookies. Speaking of food, thanks for checking in with me on Lose It! Your support really helps me more than you know. While my healthy diet has taken quite a few hits on this vacation (don’t get me started about the 1/3 pound of caramel marshmellow bliss bar I got from Dorinda’s Chocolates!!!!!) I’m trying not to freak out too bad, and when we get home it’ll be easier to re-commit. I hope your week is going well and that it’s a B or even an A week for you! Take good care and Happy New Year, Bradley!

      Lots of love,

      The Captain

      1. Glad you’re having such a great time. wouldn’t worry much about a gain here and there while on vacation. You still need to be vigilant, but have a good time too.

  5. I love seeing so many photos and such happy smiles. Don’t let the edits distract you from furry kisses and snowball fights too much–Munchkin time is precious! xxxxxxxx Lots of love from your Java Jean 🙂

    1. Hello, hello Java Jean! Just typing these words to you makes me crave some really awesome, really STRONG coffee!!!!! Luckily they have some available here at the Crest Cafe in Tahoe, where I’m writing to you on our last day.

      The girls have had fun playing with Lucy, who LOVES the snow and her biggest joy is to catch snowballs in her mouth while they explode. She has a super-thick coat and she also has the strength of enduring cold Scottish winters in her blood, so the sweet beast has absolutely no problem hanging out in the icy drifts.

      As you can tell, I could go on and on about my hound. 😉 I hope that you had a great New Year’s Eve – let’s pray with fingers and toes crossed that 2017 is the best year yet for us – I say it’s about time! I’m looking forward to catching up on your blog, particularly the MIDSOMER MURDERS section of your new post. Hurrah!!!!!!!

      Lots & lots of love, and I promise to get your belated b-day gift to you soon – alas, I’ve become a lazy-#$*% up here!
      XOXXOXOXOXO

      Lady Spy Dy

      1. Oh pish, Lady SpyDy, you’re fine! Your update made me grin. I can just imagine Lucy’s face in an explosion of snow. 🙂 What a beautiful vacation, and so very important to have some time with your family. I’m currently getting over the pink eye the boys gave me for Christmas, but I DO have hopes this year will contain quite a few moments of awesomeness. 🙂 xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

      2. PINK EYE?????? Yikes!!!!! It’s always something! I hope you get over the pink eye VERY quickly, and I’m impressed you powered through your latest blog post in spite of it. That’s true dedication. You really ARE a writer, LOL! 😉 XOOXOOXOOX

  6. Dyane, I’m so happy for you (aside from the whole rainbow thing-ugh!); a serene vacation getaway, a book in the making, a wonderful, supportive family and a daughter who bakes. Whoopee!

    Happy New Year, sweet one, to you and your entire family. ❤

    1. Dear Susan, I’m finally writing back; please forgive my tardiness – I waited to write back everyone until today since I can’t stand using cell phones to write comments, LOL! We are still in Tahoe (it’s our last day), the stomach bug is a horrid memory, thank God, and I’m at a cafe where I can use the glorious internet!

      Thanks for your lovely comment, and I wish you a wonderful New Year filled with inspiration, strength, joy and most importantly, love! XOXOXOXOXOXOXO Dyane

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