It's ages since I did any writing at all. There has just been sooo much going on...
It's actually the beginning of May since the last post; just after Scott died. It seems a lifetime ago.
Now here we are, the day after independence day, past mid-summer and I am still wearing fleece and furry slippers, with the heat on. The weather people have been predicting sun and warmth for days but I have given up on them. Every day is the same, gray and dreary in the mornings, usually drizzly, then sometimes burning off in the late afternoon when everyone rushes outside to catch some rays. But the temperature doesn't rise enough, although the light is wonderful then.
So it is definitely time for me to leave this place. The weather has a profound affect on how I feel both physically and mentally. With that in mind, I am formulating a plan and it goes something like this - and always subject to change!
First the house: As I am not going to be able to keep it, I will stay here as long as I can until the bank takes it back. Along with that comes the loan from Ghen that I have that needs to be paid back. This is the money I borrowed through Ryan to pay Chris off when he went to Florida and quit claimed the house to me. He is the only one who has made any money on our properties! The money I won't be paying on the mortgage will go to Ghen. It is actually a relief to let the house go. It has been difficult trying to hang on to it as I do love the location on the water, and the house is so liveable and comfy; I have become quite attached to it. I've been here six years now, the longest I have been in one house in my entire adult life! But I have pared back my lifestyle to where I live so simply and with so little "stuff." I sold just about everything at my big garage sale last summer and have never replaced it, so the physical move will be easy.
Once the house goes, I will move myself and the business down to Southern California somewhere. The business will have to go into a warehouse/office type place as I won't be able to afford to get a house with a garage, and besides, the way the business is growing, pretty soon it will be too big for a garage anyway. Once there, I will continue to grow the business, but look at bringing someone else in to run it. More on that aspect in a bit.
Then in the next couple of years, I want to be down in Central America somewhere, close to or on the beach, where I can live cheaply and the medical system is good. Next year I can get social security, not a whole lot, but there are countries there where I can live on it, very frugally. But I am used to living that way now, so it won't be a big change. I have a feeling that the place will be Panama - they have a great medical system, the weather is good, there is lots of sun and beautiful beaches and it doesn't get cold. Susan will be gone most of this winter for 3-4 months and Janet is already spending 8 months in Mexico and the thought of being up here and enduring a winter without my two dearest friends is very depressing.
Mymixednuts will continue to grow. And if possible I can do a lot of the work from anywhere in the world. It's the physical aspect of it that needs someone to run it. And if it is in SoCal, then it will be close to the other partners ( I am supposed to get an equity share in September) who can keep an eye on things.
Doing this business has been an amazing experience, something I would never have thought I could do. But it's amazing what we can accomplish when we are faced with a do or die situation. Every step of the way has been a challenge, and new ones present themselves every day. It is getting to the point now, where at times it is too much for one person to handle, and I have been really blessed to have Susan step in to help, and been able to hire a young man for half a day to help with a big order. Taking it to the next level is going to need more expertise I think. I've been operating by the seat of my pants, doing what's in front of me but now I am going to need help planning out the next steps. It is a viable business, but needs more than the Mom and Pop take on it. Our marketing people are doing a great job, and the accountant is doing the basic books, but we are going to need inventory management etc etc. And that is beyond my accounting/math/whatever skills.
But creating the site and business has definitely given me the confidence to move ahead, on my own. It's scary thinking about the future by myself, but now I know I can do it without anyone else around to help. Ryan has always been there in the background, online and on the phone, and his support has been invaluable. But it would really have been good to have a partner here. But I know I can do it without someone, so I guess that is the lesson in all this.
So I need to continue to develop other streams of income, while keeping MMN going; work that I can take with me wherever I go. The Kangen water business is one of those and I continue to drink copious amounts and totally believe in. My health would not be anywhere near what it is now without the water.
And then there is the writing side of things that I have let go. Ryan wants me to write a book but I don't know if I have the staying power - I am so used to writing articles that something book length is intimidating. Then there is writing for the web and that is all about building a brand for myself. But if I put as much effort into that as I have into MMN, it should work.
I am exploring options. Working the long hard hours that I have in the past month are not what I have in mind for the next part of my life. It takes too much out of me physically, and thus, mentally. And I want to spend more of my time doing things that I have laid aside for years - like creative cooking and sewing and even using my camera which sits languishing on my desk, used only to take pix of nuts! And I want to make enough, or more than enough, to be able to travel back and forth from wherever I am to see family and friends, wherever they may be - Southern California, South Africa, New Zealand, Australia, Mexico.
And of course, writing too. Today is a holiday so I don't feel guilty taking time to even write this blog. And this is cathartic, putting it all down and out there makes my plan more real. I've been floating too long with no direction, simply putting one step ahead of the last, but now it's time.