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Today's Beauty


Creating a garden bed is a great way to discover muscles and strengthen ligaments and employ health while gaining it. This will be one of two beds in the back yard, along with various pumpkin and watermelon and cantaloupe and tomato cages in other areas. Life takes place in a garden. Memories of my grandmother's joy at playing in the dirt, the underside of her nails packed with her fun in the sun.

I've been kinda cryptic and silent about my life in the last year. It's been a complete reset for me. So I will go through a bit of it here.

About a year ago, it became obvious to me that Tamara and I were no longer a fit. I moved into a little apartment, and my son, Aaron, later moved in with me. Life to me is a place of possibilities and hard work and optimism. I needed space for that.

Shortly afterward, my main client dropped me due to the economy, and half my income was gone. A friend of mine invited me to Texas to sell insurance. It didn't work because the model used was antiquated in today's environment of self-education and the election threw a lot of uncertainty into people's minds. So I was mighty broke and a long way from home.

Then in September, my van broke down, I was 1,000 miles from my kids, dealing with the collapse of my marriage, barely making enough money to eat regularly while paying few of my bills, and all by myself pretty much. I lived in a bedroom, rented from a really good guy named Paul.

Around that time, I started writing Seeing, which helped me to re-examine who I am, what I aim to do with my life, and what really matters in a relationship.

I had lost 40 pounds by that time. I rode my bike daily, did some light exercising, ate better... My mantra was to get healthy and orient myself as needed.

During the time in Texas, I managed to get back 5 or 6 times to see my tribe. On any given day, I have 3 to 6 conversations with my wonderful children. My last conversation of the day is always with Jacob, my youngest. I will forever include Tyler, Tate, and Tess among my children. The divorce put a lot of pressure on those relationships, but I trust that they will remain and be okay. I love them and will always be there for them.

Post-election, I considered moving to Canada, though Canadians make it difficult to move there. I wasn't in a place financially without the backing of an established Canadian employer to move there. So I squelched that idea and in December, I started dating.

Texas has a lot of good things to it. I live in Houston, a city with 6 million people - twice the size of the entire state of Iowa. If you want it, they have it somewhere within the city. It has a robust economy and it's a hub for air travel. I can ride my bike year-round.

I came to refer to dating at my age of near-50 as "The Land of Misfit Toys." A friend who has become like a sister to me, Lizzie, agrees with that wholeheartedly. She's married to a gay man, but separated and will someday divorce. She loves her husband, but only as a friend. She dates on occasion, and regales me with her sometimes laughable dates.

After a few missteps, I met Patti. 5'11", curvy, smart, and very down to earth.

She teaches special ed kids in a middle school. Her family is well-established and even has a local school named after them. She comes from a family of 5 kids, most of whom are local. She's very involved with her sisters and nieces and nephews. She's a loving and happy woman and a joy to be around. Kinda cool. We need to get her a bike though...

I'm getting to know her two daughters, both graduated form high school. Chelsea, the oldest, will be helping me with the garden. Mackenzie is pregnant and due in May. Patti relishes the idea of being a grandma. She's about the most nurturing woman you could hope to find.

My former client is back, and my income is once again climbing. This past month is the first when I was able to get close to my former income level.

247Toolset is finding new markets every week.

It's spring, and life is full of possibilities, hard work, and optimism. Just what I need it to be.

ETC: The first bed is ready for planting.


by Brett Rogers, 3/2/2013 8:16:48 AM


Haven't read your blog in a while but am super excited to see your latest updates. I figured things weren't working out with Tamara based on some of your earlier entries. Sorry about that. You look really happy now; Texas and gardening suit you. I've got lots of family around DFW and love Texas. It's probably one of two states I could get Casey to move to. (Alaska is the other.) We just got a bunch of garden seeds in the mail today. Although with the fresh snow it'll be some time before ours are planted. Keep posting, it's good to read your updates.



Posted by Annette (, 3/11/2013 5:24:40 PM

Hey Annette

I don't have your current email address. Can you email me?




Posted by Brett Rogers (, 3/12/2013 9:01:03 AM

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