I’ve let Jillian ride roughshod all over the blog these past few weeks. I notice she completely eliminated the “Journal” category. Thanks, J. She’s so bad.

I’m sitting here on the back porch at one in the afternoon. The neighbors are having a pool party. Sounds like college kids, but they are shouting out rules for their swim games, so…I’m not sure exactly what’s going on over there.

It’s humid, about 82 degrees in the shade. I’m in my yoga tank and light, seamless, breathable panties. Ahhh, I can breathe.

I haven’t worked in over a month now. All current and prospective clients are away for the season. That’s a fact in south Florida. Anyone who can afford to get out of here in the summertime goes, just after Mother’s Day. That’s the demographic I serve. Normally, I would be resting on my laurels until the tide rises again, but it was a dismal first quarter this year and I even considered closing my personal chef business.

I’m trying not to feel lost. Keeping the brave face, especially at the dinner table in the evenings. I feel like I need to give a full report of my activities. And honestly sometimes I feel defensive at the question “what did you do today?” although I know he doesn’t mean it that way.

What has kept me at least partially sane is having a routine most days. At this point I don’t feel “right” unless I wake up before six, write in my journal, exercise, shower,   eat breakfast, makeup and dress as if I were going out to work. All of this must be completed by nine each morning.

Then, I go to “work” managing my professional blog and trying to stay engaged in the creative aspects of my business. My business makes excellent money, when I have clients…and I just can’t give it up.

This week I’ve actually started applying for part-time work. It grieves me to do so, but I have a hard time with the notion of not making any money at all. I’ve been working  pretty consistently since I was fourteen.

Thank god we don’t “need” the money, because I’d probably resort to waiting tables again. But I WANT the money. Which might send me back there anyway. God help me. I don’t want to do that.

It’s pretty depressing looking at available jobs online for someone in my predicament. My work history is so specialized it’s hard to find where I fit in and where I’m not clearly over-qualified.

At least they are playing good music next door. They are noisy, but good-natured. The XX is my jam!

My goal this week is to apply for a job every day and ask for nothing less than $10/hour. Did I just say that?? I quit a full-time government job with all the trimmings three years ago, making $26/hr. Fuck! But, I can’t keep looking back.

I’m just applying wherever it sounds kind of fun and different. This week I applied for a job at Cheesecake Factory as a dessert finisher/espresso maker, a hospital food worker/cashier and a food server at an assisted living facility.

Once I have applied for a job I am free to spend the rest of the day writing. That’s what I really want to do with my day anyway. If money were of no concern I would write and read all day. Drinking coffee all morning, eating chocolate all afternoon and drinking red wine all evening. Ah, the writer’s life.

I’m procrastinating today. I’m behind in my job applications, because I hate those stupid work personality questionnaires. That’s new! Fucking trick questions! I hate the game. Ughhhhh!!!!

I submitted a sample of my work to an online writer’s forum for critique and I want to keep getting more unbiased, craft-centric feedback. I am busy putting final edits on my completed stories for a compilation I plan to self-publish soon. I am also considering entering a short story in the Writer’s Digest competition this year. Just for fun.  Keeps me showing up at the page.

The Kenny Chesney sing-along just started next door. I guess I spoke too soon.