Monday, December 31, 2018

Dreading the new year.

This is NOT how I wanted to return to blogging.

Late last month my oldest aunt had to go to the ER for severe abdominal pain. The doctors found a large mass in her uterus. Two weeks ago she had the surgery to remove the growth. It proved to be cancerous.

Thankfully the tumor hadn't spread. Most of it was removed except for a "thin skin" which doctors believe can be eradicated by a series of chemo treatments.

For right now we're focusing on her recovery. A hysterectomy is a major surgery for someone in their 70's. She needs to get her weight and strength back up first.

A dollar store trophy I jazzed up with paint for my aunt after her surgery

This will be one of the first times where I'm actually dreading the new year. Normally I'm happy to let go of the trials and tribulations of the current year for something better starting in January. Now it's the reverse.

What will the coming months bring for my aunt and our family? I do not think it will be easy. At all.

But all we can do is take it as it comes and pray for the best.

May 2019 be a year of hope, perseverance, and victory for us all!

Happy New Year, everyone!!

Wednesday, June 6, 2018

Anywhere (away with you).

He drove 17 hours non-stop from his extended family in Orlando to see me.

How many men would do that? 

It was only seven days together but I miss him already. 

We bickered and differed on things but I think our connection grew even closer during his latest visit. Overall it was a loving, positive experience. 

He flew back to his home country over the weekend. What we’ve developed over the years always gets put on hold when he’s not here. Although I’m thankful for his friendship, it would be nice if we became more than this long-distance, on-and-off again friendship/more-than-friends thing. 

He talked about going back to school in Canada and starting a new life for himself there. How do I fit into that picture…if at all? 

Will all of this ever lead to something greater or am I ultimately wasting my time and consistently getting my hopes up? 

This song by Rita Ora was playing at Target the morning after he left:

“Time flies by when the night is young
 Daylight shines on an undisclosed location, location 
Bloodshot eyes lookin' for the sun 
Paradise we live it, and we called it a vacation, vacation 

You're painting me a dream that I 
Wanna belong in, wanna belong in

Over the hills and far away 
A million miles from L.A.
Just anywhere away with you 
I know we've got to get away 
Someplace where no one knows our name 
We'll find the start of something new 
Just take me anywhere, take me anywhere 
Anywhere away with you.” 

“I don’t know what the answer is,” I told him. “I just know I want you here with me.” 

His hairs were still in the shower after he was gone and I didn’t wash my bed sheets yet to keep the scent of him a bit longer. 

Sometimes I think I’m a fool and my heart is too open for its own good. 


Saturday, March 31, 2018

Forming a new family.

One leaf becomes two, then three. 

Another shoot appears, followed by another after that. 

Soon there’s a small cluster forming a new family.

Sunday, February 25, 2018

Change is a thing you can count on.

Earlier in the month I learned the assistant store manager at the crafts store I work at was transferring to another location.

This week one of my coworkers at the call center job got another position in another department.

And in a few months, four of my student workers at my nighttime university job will be graduating and starting their careers in the real world.

It seems everyone is changing and moving on to other things...except me.

All I do is work and work and sleep and back at it again. It's a vicious cycle.

Will I ever draw and paint and write again? It's been years now.

I fear things aren't changing fast enough for me and in the way I want.

My mortgage still needs to be paid regardless of my dreams.


This Miley song has been playing a lot recently on the craft store's overhead speakers.

An appropriate way to sum up this post, I think.

"Feels like I just woke up

Like all this time I've been asleep 
Even though it's not who I am
 I'm not afraid of who I used to be 

No one stays the same (oh, oh) 
You know what goes up must come down (oh, oh) 
Change is a thing you can count on (oh, oh) 
I feel so much younger now (oh, oh) 

Feels like I've been living in a dream 
But never make it to the end 
My eyes open when they feel the light 
It's always right before I'm about to scream 

No one stays the same (oh, oh) 
You know what goes up must come down (oh, oh) 
Change is a thing you can count on (oh, oh) 
I feel so much younger now (oh, oh) 

What goes up must come down 
What goes up must come down 
What goes up must come down 
What goes up must come down (yeah) 

No one stays the same (oh, oh) 
You know what goes comes back around (oh, oh) 
Change is a thing you can count on (oh, oh) 
I feel so much younger now (oh, oh) 
I feel so much younger now (yeah) 
I feel so much younger now."

Wednesday, February 14, 2018

Sharing my love.

I got a text this morning saying I had to come to my university job right away

At first I thought something happened but it all made sense when I got to work and saw what was waiting for me...


This is the first time someone has given me flowers for Valentine’s Day--from the same guy that has ever bought me flowers, well, ever! (Gracias chapin!) 
Whenever someone would comment on the bouquet today, I was one big blush. 

I decided to leave them at work at the front desk. This way all the students and staff entering our department would be greeted by beautiful red roses. 

“Don’t you want to take them home?” a coworker asked. 

“I think it’d be nice leaving them here for all to enjoy,” I replied. “This way I’m sharing my love.” 

And isn’t that what today is all about? 

Happy Valentine’s Day, everyone!!

Monday, January 22, 2018


It's been a long day at both my university jobs but before the night is through, I just wanted to wish my blog a happy anniversary.

Exploding Doughnut turns nine today!! 
This is only mildly distracting, right? 

It seems like a small thing to celebrate these days since I don't blog as often as I once did.

I'm still grateful to have this space exist though, even if for just an occasional post here and there.

And thank all of you for continuing to see my story unfold. I wouldn't be here this many years without everyone's support along the way. You ROCK!!

Sunday, December 31, 2017

Onto the next year!

The year is a couple hours from being over and that can only mean one thing...

It's time for the annual year-in-review blogpost!

I know I haven't blogged very much this year but here's every entry over the past twelve months organized just for you.


(1-22-17) Eight and counting.


(2-14-17) Love today!


(4-15-17) I could be the one.


(5-31-17) Purple couch!


(6-10-17) It's time to celebrate!!!


(7-25-17) Happy Halloween!!


(8-26-17) Condo anniversary!!
(8-29-17) A crafty anniversary!


(9-20-17) Six years going on seven.


(10-30-17) Call me Mother (Plant).


(11-23-17) "Don't lose your creative outlet!"


(12-28-17) New beginnings.
(12-31-17) Onto the next year!

Most of 2017 was pretty uneventful for me, unless you consider buying a couch an "event". I spent the past twelve months working and being alone and lonely--I only went on three (unsuccessful) dates this year.

I really don't do New Year's resolutions anymore but I would like to incorporate creativity and art into my life again. I'd say it'd also be nice to go on more dates in 2018 but I can't control gay men's lack of interest so I won't get my hopes up.

We shall see what happens though.

May the coming year be AMAZING for all of us. 

***Happy New Year, everyone!!***

Thursday, December 28, 2017

New beginnings.

It always begins the same.

New growth, then a single leaf. 

Outstretched. Ready to explore.

And this is how it starts.

Thursday, November 23, 2017

"Don't lose your creative outlet!"

Turkey. Overeating. Time with family.

Thanksgiving is here!

Image result for charlie brown thanksgiving gif

I spent most of the day catching up with my mom, aunts, and brothers--putting on several pounds via mashed potatoes and stuffing.

I made it a point to text everyone on my phone's contact list this morning, wishing them a happy holiday with their families. One in particular was a former coworker at the crafts store I work at. She ended up getting a job with Corporate and now lives in another state.

She replied back asking how I was doing. I mentioned I'm mostly working a lot and haven't really drawn or painted much (at all) over the past couple of years.

"Don't lose your creative outlet!" she warned. "You need that."

I knew she'd understand since she comes from an art background as well.

I haven't forgotten my life as an artist but I certainly have buried it very deep. It's so hidden, I often wonder if it's gone forever.

You'd think something so simple as picking up a pencil or a paintbrush would be easy but for me it's not.

I will heed my former coworker's advice though. Somehow, someway, I have to become an artist again.

I'm just thankful to still have the opportunity to try.

Happy Thanksgiving to you and your family, everyone!!

Monday, October 30, 2017

Call me Mother (Plant).

Epipremnum aureum

Commonly called Pothos and Devil's Ivy. 

It was the first houseplant I ever had...and it's still alive to this day. 

Someone gave it to my dad over 25 years ago and judging by the red and green weaved basket it came in, the plant was probably a Christmas gift. 

That makes sense because it was abandoned in an unheated part of the house (that we used for storage). I remember spotting it as a child--surprised it was still alive during the wintertime. I gave it some water (every now and then) and in the weeks that followed, I moved the plant into the main living room. 

My mom saw I took an interest in the plant and she ended up buying a small little houseplant from the grocery store as its companion. Then another (and then another) would follow. That's why I call it my "Mother Plant", not only because it was my very first plant but it led to all the others I acquired over the years.

When I moved out of my family's home over two years ago, the Mother Plant was the first thing I took with me. I could never leave it behind. It then came with me when I bought my condo last year

I probably didn't keep up with its maintenance as often as I should have (due to working so much) and I slowly saw my very first houseplant looking rather sickly over these past few months. 

So I did the unthinkable. I cut down the Mother Plant all the way to its start again. 

Here's my Mother Plant now...

 Bare and naked.

Now mind you, I could've easily rooted the cuttings trailing the floor and added them to the pot but I want the plant's original root systems to be producing the leaves, not its "children". 

Its roots are intact and it's a very resilient plant. I have faith it'll grow once more. "Come back to me," I whispered. 

Now to sit and wait for it to return to its former glory. 

This one's dedicated to you, Mother Plant...

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Six years going on seven.

Today marks six years of working at my university night-job and I’m happy about that.

It’s a place where work doesn’t feel like work and I actually look forward to going there.

 My work computer. Don't you love my desktop image?

Due to the university's budget issues, there won't be chances of advancement anytime soon but I’m grateful to be part of this team. To see my student workers grow and spread their wings and then help train incoming students that will take their place. They’ve helped me more than they know. 

So before my workday ends, I just wanted to say… 

Happy Anniversary, university night-job!!

Tuesday, August 29, 2017

A crafty anniversary!

I’m not sure how much of an anniversary it is now that I'm just there on Sundays, but today marks my seventh year working at the arts-and-crafts store! 

I've seen this company change and evolve over the years, mostly for the better. 

We’ve had four district managers, four store managers, and five assistant store managers come and go during my time here. I went from being the newest employee to becoming one of the senior-most members. That just seems crazy to me that I “outlived” so many managers and fellow associates.


I steadily grew into my role over the years and eventually mastered and surpassed it. Even though the job is still quite frustrating, I know I can handle it because I've been doing just that.

Time will tell how much longer I'm there but for now...

Happy Anniversary, arts-and-crafts store job!!

Saturday, August 26, 2017

Condo anniversary!!

This particular day came faster than expected. I guess one loses a sense of time when working so much. But still an important date to remember.

Today marks the one-year anniversary that I officially bought my condo!

I'm embarrassed to say I still don't have any art on the walls and am still in need of a coffee table but at least I have a place to rest and recover and call my own.

I spent most of the day being a homebody. Cooking for myself, cleaning, watching TV, and taking care of my many houseplants. What better way to honor this space than to use it, right?

 Just some of my houseplants.  :)

While I don't think this will be a place I'll live for the rest of my life, it serves its purpose for now and I'm thankful to have it. It beats renting any day!

So with that said...

Happy Anniversary, dear condo! I'm glad to own you!

Tuesday, July 25, 2017

Happy Halloween!!

I heard wicked laughter while putting up the store's price-change labels over the weekend.

Was the arts-and-crafts store I work at mocking me?

From around the corner between the wedding section and the candle aisle, I spotted the source.

A full-blown Halloween display, complete with flashing lights and ghoulish sound effects!

Already? It's still July.

But that's retail for you. You know it's a sure sign the holiday shopping season is slowly rearing its ugly head.

Thank God I only work there on Sundays now and will be avoiding most of it.

So Happy Halloween, everyone!! Be safe if you're out trick-or-treating...three months from now.


Saturday, June 10, 2017

It's time to celebrate!!!

Familiar faces leaving.

Moving on to new cities, to new jobs, on to bigger and better things.

It's bittersweet for sure.

Here at the university I work for, students are finishing up their final exams for the year and many are preparing for graduation.

That can only mean one thing.

It's time to CELEBRATE!!!

I wanted to give the student workers at my (second) university job a big send-off and thank you for all their hard work this academic school year.

The counter in the back office space was transformed into an abundant potluck party.



I tried making it as colorful and festive as I could. Bold signage, metallic fringe, and bright floral garland among bags of chips, candy, and cake.


It was fun livening up an otherwise dull space. It was also a much-needed moment to create and play with color and patterns and textures. And it helped bring us all together over some good old-fashioned junk food.

Congrats to this year's graduates! May you all go FAR!!

Wednesday, May 31, 2017

Purple couch!

These things always seem like mini milestones for some reason, even though they're probably not.

I moved into my very own condo nine months ago but besides my bed and dining room table, I didn't really have any furniture to sit on.

My previous place was a small studio so a couch never seemed necessary. Now that I own a one-bedroom, well, there's a big space in the living room begging for seating.

That's all changed though because I purchased a couch and it arrived two weeks ago!

It's my first couch. Ever. Like a proud sofa dad, I must show it off!

The walls in my condo are warm oranges and peach tones (that's how the previous owner had it) so I wanted the sofa to pop against such dominant colors.

I chose a lovely purple.

Not a Barney purple. My couch has more blue in it.

Not quite, Barney.

Almost like a Prince purple but deeper.


Here it is.....

It's a three-seater but the end has a chaise lounge built in so I can rest after a long day's work. And now if I ever have company, they'll have a place to (properly) sit.

I still don't have artwork on the walls (yet), and I feel there's still much decorating to do, but this couch will help make my place a little more like a home.

Saturday, April 15, 2017

I could be the one.

It was the spur of the moment. 

He flew all the way from his country to see me late last month. 

It was for less than a week--like a drawn-out daydream. 

We talked about life and love. Our families, our past, what we want for the future. 

There's no denying there's something there. How long will we dance this dance? Will we ever see it through? 

If he would just give me his heart completely...I think I could be the one. 

"I see the moon
I see the moon 
I see the moon 
Oh when you're looking at the sun
Not a fool 
Not a fool 
Not a fool 
No, you're not fooling anyone 

Oh but when you're gone
When you're gone 
When you're gone 
Oh, baby, all the lights go out 
Thinking oh that, baby, I was wrong
I was wrong
I was wrong 
Come back to me, baby, we can work this out 

Oh baby come on, let me get to know you
Just another chance so that I can show 
That I won't let you down, oh no 
No, I won't let you down, oh no 
'Cause I could be the one 
I could be the one 
I could be the one 
I could be the one 

I see in blue 
I see in blue 
I see in blue 
Oh and you see everything in red 
And there's nothing that I wanna do for you 
Do for you 
Do for you 
Oh 'cause you got inside my head

Oh but when you're gone 
When you're gone 
When you're gone 
Oh, baby, all the lights go out 
Thinking oh that, baby, I was wrong 
I was wrong 
I was wrong 
Come back to me, baby, we can work this out 

Oh baby come on, let me get to know you 
Just another chance so that I can show 
That I won't let you down, oh no 
No, I won't let you down, oh no 
'Cause I could be the one
I could be the one 

I could be the one
Be the one, be the one 
Be the one, be the one 
Be the one, be the one 
I could be the one 
Be the one, be the one 
Be the one, be the one 
Be the one, be the one 
I could be the one 
Be the one, be the one 
Be the one, be the one 
Be the one, be the one 
I could be the one 
Be the one, be the one 
Be the one, be the one 
Will you be mine? 

Oh baby come on, let me get to know you 
Just another chance so that I can show 
That I won't let you down, oh no 
No, I won't let you down, oh no 
'Cause I could be the one 
I could be the one 
I could be the one."