Journal of My Story..... Thoughts | Feelings | Healing | Partners Recovery

Discussion in 'Significant Other Journals' started by HonestyMatters, Sep 7, 2018.

  1. HonestyMatters

    HonestyMatters Fapstronaut

    Thanks @Rock_Star , I do agree with you and have thought about this before too. The separation consequence at the moment is to do with gaslighting, his M slip and stopping his check-ins. A while back we did make an agreement that when he's on a separation consequence that he can't just use it as an opportunity to sit back and watch TV and movies and that he needs to be doing his recovery work. I haven't implemented any consequences of my own in relation to the IA work yet. Lisa Weiss was saying that it shouldn't happen until after the 90 day period. For the most part he has been very committed to doing his IA work daily, talking with his IA partner daily and doing his 3 dailies and homework each day. After a big argument he let it all slide for a couple of weeks there and did very little. He didn't self correct either and or impose his own consequences. Even after me calling him out on it. I have already written a list of my own IA consequences and will start putting these boundaries in place, one at a time, as it says and start enforcing consequences if he doesn't pull himself up within the 24 hrs and self correct as he's supposed to, or implement his own consequence. And my consequences are exactly like what you said, massages etc...nothing about separation there in relation to the IA. The separation consequences are related to my other boundaries before we started the IA work, and it also gives me space and time away from him to reflect and work on myself. But I do really appreciated your feedback @Rock_Star and it makes me think more about specific boundary breeches like lack of communication, lack of intimacy etc and how the consequences could be directly related to working on those specific things too.
    Rock_Star likes this.
  2. HonestyMatters

    HonestyMatters Fapstronaut


    7 Steps to Nurturing Your Inner Self

    1) Send loving messages to yourself. Tell yourself, "I love you and appreciate who you are." ...
    2) Take good care of yourself. ...
    3) Do nice things for yourself. ...
    4) Set healthy boundaries with others. ...
    5) Become your own advocate. ...
    6) Believe in yourself. ...
    7) And lastly and most important: Be compassionate with yourself.

    Today I'll be running the kids around for much of the day so I'll be keeping my goals simple. My youngest son has his first proper appointment with the child psychologist this morning that we seen last week so I hope he likes it and gets the most out of it. He also has a job interview later too. So I really hope he gets the position and it helps him to start being more responsible and constructive with his time.

    Goals for Today!

    - Support and be there for my youngest at his appointment today [​IMG]
    - Help him prepare for his job interview [​IMG]

    - Meditation
    - Find an online course I'd like to do
    - Go for a walk
    - Just relax and chill out for a while [​IMG]
    - Find a holiday to start saving towards

    - 30 mins reading of the Hold Me Tight book [​IMG]
    - 30 mins of Married & Alone exercises
    - 3 dailies myself with H [​IMG]

    - General Tidy up [​IMG]
    - Clean out Bathroom Vanities

    Last edited: Jun 7, 2019
  3. HonestyMatters

    HonestyMatters Fapstronaut


    It's a nice feeling to have the house to myself. Husband has gone to visit family for the afternoon and the kids are busy and off doing there own thing. Its the weekend and I'm going to enjoy just relaxing, snuggled in my blanket and watching a movie for a while. No goals or plans today, just relaxation and go with the flow. Feeling content :)
    Lostneverland likes this.
  4. HonestyMatters

    HonestyMatters Fapstronaut

    The connection between us has been a lot better over the past week. We've been getting along and there's been no conflict bar one situation which I'll get to. He's been keeping up his daily talks to me about how he's going with his PA, any thoughts / urges etc and we've both been doing the dailies each day together. His C ended yesterday and I actually decided to cut it short by a couple of days because things have been good between us and we'd ordered a new memory foam mattress that arrived yesterday and I thought it would be nice for us both to test it out together. It's a very comfy mattress and I got a great nights sleep.

    The one dispute we did have was on Sunday. We decided to work through the questions in the first conversation of the Hold Me Tight book, which is all about the negative dances / patterns we get into when disputes / arguments arise. Ironically we ended up in a dispute over looking at our negative patterns that we get into and how and why they happen. Quite unbelievable. Here we are trying to recognise the cycles without blaming or fault finding, just becoming aware of how it all unfolds and then spirals into a never ending cycle of hurt, blame, and disconnection and we ended up in an argument and frustrated over it. We both just left it at that and I told him it's just ridiculous that we are going into the demon dialogue (what the author refers to it as) whilst trying to actually become aware of and address the demon dialogue that we go into. Hours later he came and said he agreed that we were doing exactly what we were trying not to do. So we decided to give it another go the next day. And we did successfully get through it without getting upset, blaming or faultfinding and were able to be more open-minded about the ways we both contribute to the negative cycles. The fact we had the situation between us over the past couple of weeks to use as an example made it a lot easier to see our patterning.

    The last couple of days I've spent most my time researching and looking into a particular field I find fascinating. I enrolled myself into an online course and have been pretty much engrossed in that. It's something I've had a keen interest in for a long time and so I decided to look further into it and see where it takes me. I'm not sure if it's just a fascination / interest or something I'd really like to pursue further. I guess time will tell.
  5. HonestyMatters

    HonestyMatters Fapstronaut

    The Wellness Wheel

    Goals for Today!

    - Meditation
    - Do some research / study
    - Do a workout

    - Hold Me Tight book reading
    - Married & Alone exercises
    - 3 dailies myself with H
    - Relaxation / connection time together

    - General Tidy up
    - An hour of gardening
    - Finances
  6. HonestyMatters

    HonestyMatters Fapstronaut

    So I've started writing this, then deleted, started again, then deleted. I feel I need to write something but it's all a jumbled mess. Not sure what I even want to say.

    I guess the short story is he finds it difficult to spend time with me, be IN the relationship and maintain commitment and focus to his recovery at the same time.

    He's still doing his recovery work, but his motivation is up down all the time and lately feeling stagnant. He's still doing his IA work which lately just consists of the dailies. Coming up with 2 feelings (past & present) and 2 praises for me. He does this with his check-in. He can take anywhere from 30-60 mins to work it out and then share it with me which is usually another 10-15 mins. That's the bulk of his recovery work for the past couple of months. There's workbook exercises he's supposed to be also doing daily but that dropped off a couple of months ago. He still does his daily 5 min talk with his IA partner as well.

    So what I'm finding is the more time we spend together, the better things are between us the more the recovery work slides.
    At night, once dinner is through and we've finished most general stuff. If I just want to relax and unwind. So does he. It's like he just wants to do the bare minimum and is checking boxes.

    Its like he needs conflict and me getting up him about not doing his work to motivate him. If things are ok or relatively calm / peaceful between us then he's not pushing himself.

    I've tried to let go of the reins because it's not my responsibility and I don't want the burden of his recovery but it's also a boundary of mine that he be working his recovery, and actually progressing with it, finding a good solid path with it, taking total responsibility for it and being his own driving force. And when that's not happening, or if it starts to dwindle like it has been that's when alarm bells are going off and insecurity and fear start setting in for me, which leads to me saying something, leads to arguments / conflicts and then he starts lifting his game again.

    I know they say recovery is not linear. I just don't like this pattern. He is doing more than he's ever done before but he really lacks consistency.

    He has really made an effort and has been throwing himself back into it again the last week but to do so he has had to separate himself from me and he slept out on the lounge for a week - his own doing. The first night he was doing some recovery work and we were not on the best of terms and he ended up falling asleep and stayed out there. Same the second night. Then I ended up coming down with a cold and so he decided to stay out there for the next 4-5 nights because he didn't want to get it. That's fair enough. But he didn't discuss with me for an entire week what was going on or what he was doing in terms of deciding to sleep out there. We were still talking about stuff we needed to, but as per usual he was not talking anything personal between us. I was just like expected to know and be able to read his mind of what's going on. He doesn't initiate personal conversations, if he can avoid them he will.

    But basically it boils down to , he finds it difficult to maintain any kind of balance between doing his recovery work and spending time with me. Because some of his work - the IA work requires me to be involved I've stipulated that I need that part to happen as early as possible (the dailes & check-in) I can't be waiting til any hour of the night to be there to do it with him. I made a rule it has to be before dinner starts. But given it takes him so long to do this, it can be difficult because of the time between him getting home and dinner starting. And he just needs/wants to unwind a bit too which is understandable.

    I get it. None of it's easy. Recovery takes a lot of time, dedication, focus and motivation. But hey, I didn't put him in this situation. He did it to himself. I've been the supportive wife , still am and I've been the wife who PUSHES, POKES & PRODS, INSISTS & EVEN FORCES him to do his work. But no more. Its not my responsibility but it is a boundary of mine.

    It's just sad that if things are calm and good between us he losses his motivation toward his recovery work. He still wants recovery but not all the work. And it's sad that he finds it so difficult to be in the Relationship and be in the Recovery at the same time, because they both take a lot of time, commitment and effort.
    Last edited: Jul 9, 2019
    Lostneverland likes this.
  7. :( I think they lose motivation because the "things are good" excuse is easily turned into denial...'if things in the relationship are doing ok, I don't need to worry so much about working on recovery.' It's wrong and frustrating for SO's because we know what frequently happens when they start to let their guard down prematurely.
    Lostneverland likes this.
  8. HonestyMatters

    HonestyMatters Fapstronaut

    Exactly. And where does that leave us SO’s? Here we are trying to better the relationship, improve connection, spend more quality time together, be more close and affectionate, only to feel it backfiring on us. It’s like WE have to keep a guard up constantly. Can’t have things going to smoothly or well it would seem...can’t just relax and be in the relationship... :confused:
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  9. HonestyMatters

    HonestyMatters Fapstronaut

    I realised this morning that yesterday was 12 months since the last D Day. It’s been a tough year and I don’t know where I’d be today without the support of Nofap. Knowing that I have a community of SO survivors who understand and know exactly what I’m going through has been a life saver and also the feeling of hope I get from all the legitimate PAs working hard in there recovery’s. To be able to connect and share our stories has been a lifeline. I never had that until 12 months ago and I honestly don’t know how I actually survived the past decade dealing with the knowledge of his porn and masturbation abuse and all the lies and betrayals that went with it. It was ten years of shear torment and hell. And the previous decade before that one wasn’t any better, his emotional emptiness and lack of connection made it a very lonely and isolated marriage - I just didn’t know why it was the way it was all those years ago. It’s been an exhausting year, an emotional roller coaster of hope, fears, distrust, calm, anger, triggers, grounding & trauma. As it sounds, a year of being all over the place but slowly I believe we are growing, learning and progressing.

    I want to thank one particular member @GhostWriter who spent countless hours helping me and without his one on one time spent trying to get through to my PA husband I don’t think he’d be in recovery today. Many thought he was hard, and arrogant and an arsehole at times lol but I appreciated his brutal honesty, his frankness, his wit and most of all his knowledge on porn and sex addiction. So thank you GW if you see this, you were cornerstone to my husband dealing with his addiction and I will always be thankful for that!

    They say it takes at least 3 to 5 years of solid recovery work before you could call yourself a recovered addict and so I’m not deluding myself of that fact, he still has a way to go. And consistency, perseverance and self drive are the definite areas he needs to work on in my opinion and self exploration and more broad research of PA and relationship recovery too.

    As for me, I have a long way to go too. But I feel a million times better today than I did 12 months ago. Although exhausted, I feel more at peace in myself, more acceptance and understanding of myself than I ever have. I think I’m getting there. I still have my triggers and moments but less daily dread and anxiety that’s for sure. For the most part our relationship has improved and we are closer and more connected than we’ve been in many years but we still have our moments and when the arguments/disagreements come they can be bad and last for days/weeks but I think they’re getting less too. With his Doug Weiss’s intimacy anorexia work and Sue Johnson’s emotionally focussed therapy we are learning more about avoiding these disagreement traps and getting better at getting out of these vicious cycles that we get stuck in...
    Last edited: Jul 21, 2019
  10. HonestyMatters

    HonestyMatters Fapstronaut

    Is anyone familiar with “ Fear of Missing Out “

    So we’ve discussed this a couple of times in the last week, amongst other things like cheaters high and duper’s delight.

    In his checkins he talks about still getting that feeling to escape at times, mostly at work though. He says it’s not a direct thought or urge to look at porn but a need to escape in general which in the past always led to porn or viewing other women in some shape or form.

    It’s either to escape boredom, the mundaneness of work or stress relief. He’s also mentioned the feeling of fear he’s missing out many times now and I looked it up and was surprised it’s actually a thing, even with it’s own acronym FOMO.

    He says it’s like a feeling of loss of all that he is missing out on, so I guess that’s all the latest hot videos and images of sexy women that are getting posted but also the movies that he’s missing out on because of the sex scenes etc so therefore we don’t watch them. And it’s like a feeling that others are getting to see and experience what he’s not.

    I guess I can understand it from an addicts point of view and logically he knows he’s not missing out but gaining from not being apart of that scene anymore but it’s still a feeling that he gets.

    I read a little about it and one thing that stood out to me in an article , was that need to be in the know and constantly seeking and fulfilling that need ironically meant that those suffering from FOMO end up missing out on so much IRL...

    Anyhow, it’s good that he’s aware of it and talking about it.

    We also talked about whether it’s a feeling of wanting to try and dupe me, seeking the high that comes with the deception and lies knowing that their getting away with something that they shouldn’t be doing. Because this is also something that he used to do and felt in the past but he says no it’s more the FOMO at the moment.

    Just wondering if other SOs or PAs know what I’m talking about...have experienced this kinda thing.
  11. HonestyMatters

    HonestyMatters Fapstronaut

    And as an added thought, the only “FOMO” I’ve ever experienced in all of this, is the fear of missing out on a REAL relationship with honesty and respect, real intimacy and no lies and no betrayal....that’s about the size of my FOMO experience
  12. Queenie%Bee

    Queenie%Bee Fapstronaut

    Yup I have FOMO .
    HonestyMatters likes this.
  13. There was a thread about FOMO started not too long ago in another nofap forum. Thought you might be interested...
    Fear of missing out
    HonestyMatters likes this.
  14. HonestyMatters

    HonestyMatters Fapstronaut

    Thanks at @hope4healing, I will pass this onto him too :)
    hope4healing likes this.
  15. I first heard of fomo here at NF
    And it’s a good topic to look
    at about SA.

    I mentioned fomo in a mtg and someone, with lots of recovery, mentioned jomo as what he found instead of fomo in recovery.

    He found
    Joy of Missing Out
    With what he gained in recovery
    with his wife and family.
  16. HonestyMatters

    HonestyMatters Fapstronaut

    I like that Trappist.

    And agreed something to explore in addiction and recovery . That’s what @Br1 R1 said he wanted to try and reflect on more and work out where this reoccurring feeling is coming from.
  17. HonestyMatters

    HonestyMatters Fapstronaut

    WHAT AM I GRATEFUL FOR? :emoji_two_hearts:


    • my free time today to fit in a work out earlier
    • the peace & quiet as the kids return to school today after holidays
    • the opportunity to do a bit of self pampering today
    • that my husband loves me
    • that he is doing his best in connecting with me and working his recovery
    • that I feel desired by him and he expresses affection toward me often
    • that he cooks us lovely dinners every night
    • how lovely and sunny it is outside
    • my warm cozy bed and our lovely home
    • our healthy and resilient children
    • all the beautiful trees and birds that surround our home
    • for feeling more at peace in myself
    • for my own healing and recovery




    LuxPerpetua, Br1 R1 and hope4healing like this.
  18. HonestyMatters

    HonestyMatters Fapstronaut


    The last few weeks we've made Wednesday nights our night to read a chapter of the emotionally focused therapy book - Hold Me Tight and to do the related activities together. We started this book a couple of months back but it kept getting pushed to the wayside so now we are dedicating a night each week for our relationship connection / intimacy work.

    So far we've completed ~

    Conversation 1 - Recognizing the Demon Dialogues
    Conversation 2 - Finding the Raw Spots
    Conversation 3 - Revisiting a Rocky Moment

    Tonight we completed Conversation 4 - Hold Me Tight: Engaging & Connecting

    Conversation 4 helps build on the sense of safety we have developed as result of Conversations 1,2 & 3 which taught us how to halt or contain the negative patterns of interacting with one another as well as to identify the deeper feelings that come up in negative cycles and moments of disconnection. Once we establish a basic platform of safety, it is much easier to effectively seek connection and respond to each other in a supportive way. Conversation 4 teaches how to generate positive patterns of reaching for and responding to each other, in effect learning how to speak the language of attachment.

    So there are two parts to this conversation, the first is - What Am I Most Afraid of? And second, What Do I Need Most From You?

    Tonight we completed the first part. We had to go back to a rocky moment in our current relationship. And geez there are so many it's hard to know which moment to pinpoint exactly so I decided to just bring up what I feel is a reoccurring pattern of disconnection in our communication.

    Situation: There's been countless times when I've been upset or distressed about something, or I'm angry or annoyed about reoccurring problems in our marriage or things not changing, and I will be trying to talk to him, trying to get him to understand how I'm feeling, and why I'm feeling like that, trying to connect with him and wanting to be understood but even though he may be sitting there listening and saying "I understand" it just feels so empty and like he really doesn't feel me or get me.

    So we had to write down and discuss our "handles" in this situation. Handles are descriptive images, words or phrase that open the door into your innermost feelings and vulnerabilities, your emotional reality.

    For me in those times as above, my handles are ~

    - Feeling alone
    - Feeling he is not there with me
    - Feeling he doesn't engage / not attending
    - Feeling he's uninterested in what I have to say / indifferent / detached
    - Feeling he's not feeling me
    - Feeling like there's no relating or discussion or conversation about it, it's all one sided

    So from that my core deeper feelings were ~

    - Fear
    - Alone
    - Abandoned
    - Misunderstood
    - Unimportant
    - Not worth it
    - At a loss
    - Panicked

    And therefore from those above really ultimately feeling UNSAFE & UNLOVED. And I guess to answer the question of What Am I Most Afraid Of ~ is that he is not there with me or for me.

    So for my SO, in the same kind of situation as above he described his handles as ~

    - Feeling overwhelmed
    - Feeling fearful
    - Feeling confused
    - Feeling attacked
    - Feeling like hiding

    And his deeper core feelings were ~

    - Abandonment
    - Being Attacked
    - Not being enough
    - Fear

    For the question "What Am I Most Afraid Of" he answered, of not being enough, that whatever he's says will not be enough or will be wrong or that he can't do enough right

    So it was really good to be able to identify and discuss with each other what deeper feelings are coming up for each of us in these moments when we are feeling disconnected and our communication / conversations are just not working / not flowing and neither of us feel that we are getting anywhere. It was good to be able to be honest and feel safe to discuss these feelings and both be supportive of one another instead of blaming and criticising.

    So that was it for this evening and the next part we will be looking at is WHAT DO I NEED MOST FROM YOU?


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  19. HonestyMatters

    HonestyMatters Fapstronaut

    I’m doing some self-care today. I’m on my shiatsu back massage chair which feels awesome. Necks been sore for some reason. I usually find if I massage my shoulders / back it seems to resolve my neck pain, hold too much tension there I think. Then I’ve made a lovely hot epsom salt (2 cups) bath and will be relaxing in that soon. My whole body’s aching actually from a workout 2 days ago and I’ve had agonising hip flexors from a heap of leg raises I did for my abs and I’ve never felt such bloody pain...been hobbling around like an old person as it pains my hip flexors to stand up straight or walk lol

    I’ve added essential oils of Sandlewood, Ylang Ylang, Patchouli and Jasmine. Not sure about that combination in terms of benefits but it smells divine so I’m going with that.

    The kids taught me a neat little trick of putting your phone in a ziplock bag so I can watch something in the bath without stressing I could drop my phone. So about to layback and watch a video one of the members posted here on Shame and listen to a BAE podcast. I’ve listened to lots of BAE but never from the start and my husband started from episode 1 and is at about 45 now so I want to catch-up so I know more what he’s referring to when he discusses them with me...

    Maybe read a little of the book I’m currently reading too. “The Subtle Art of Not Giving a Fuck by Mark Manson. I’m about 50% into it and it’s exceeded my expectations. This is an awesome book for anyone who suffers a lot of stress, anxiety, depression and feels like everything in life just gets on top of them - which is me!! Highly recommend it to anyone looking to destress their life. Although he says the word fuck a lot lol in the first couple of if you are not the type to be offended then it’s a good read....

    Last edited: Jul 25, 2019
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  20. HonestyMatters

    HonestyMatters Fapstronaut

    This morning we went for a walk along a stretch of 3 beautiful beaches in our home city, there’s actually more than that but we took the shorter walk. It’s always gorgeous with the scenic rocks and cliffs all round and the beautiful ocean backdrop. We had breakfast at one of the cafes on the beach and did the half hour walk back again. I was surprised how busy it was being mid winter but the skies were blue and sun shining brightly so I guess many had the same idea. He was a bit distracted and edgy and I knew it was in regards to a job he’s been thinking about applying for and the closing date is tonight midnight and he has lots of uncertainties and doubts which is understandable but I really just wanted him to be with me and not lost in his thoughts. He tried his best to be present but I could feel his angst about it all. Still it was lovely getting out and enjoying the beautiful weather.

    I felt a little triggered this morning, something since our chat last night and I couldn’t put it out my mind. So this morning once he woke I said I needed to ask him why he told me that he had posted a message in the group chat last night when I knew he’d done that the night before. My mind was like why would you lie about that, are you trying to make it seem you had done more work than you actually had. I didn’t say anything at the time. It was only something small but the fact he could have lied made me feel triggered because any lying will trigger me these days no matter how small. Anyway he apologised and said it was just a mistake and he was confused because he had messaged his support person earlier in the evening and they had Skyped early that morning and it’s been a busy day and he had rewatched his message and others in the group chat and had just mucked it up. I accepted that, like I say it wasn’t anything big but it was just the thought of if he was lying, why would he do that, and if he was lying about that, what else could he be lying about etc and so the trigger starts to spiral.

    Yesterday I listened to episode 2 of BAE, all about how to respond to your spouses betrayal trauma. It only went for 20 minutes but it was so good and reassuring, everything just resonated with me. What really stood out is all the things that you shouldn’t do to your spouse and all of these were exactly what I’d experienced for 8 solid years...things like my husband just negatively reacting to my trauma triggers (instead of responding and coming from a mindful mindset), not holding space for me so I could just process and move through my feelings, him instead protecting and defending himself and making it all about him and his feelings or turning the tables back at me and accusing or blaming me of things. All of which just exacerbates the trauma a hundredfold. It also talked about how you can tell when your partner is really in true recovery and they are learning and growing because they automatically start to hold space for you, they no longer feel the need to defend or protect themselves, they want to help you through your pain, they connect and empathise with you more. In fact learning to be more empathetic is a sign of recovery. It was a really good listen, and so I played it again later but this time I wanted him to hear it too, just while I was doing the laundry and he was preparing food in the kitchen. He had listened to it before but afterwards he told me it made him sad for all the trauma and pain he’d caused me through his addiction but all the times he denied holding me space when I was triggered. He also said he felt so much more moved and really felt it more so, this time just for the fact that he was listening to it while I was there listening to it, he felt so much shame and sadness. Shame is not a good thing and we all know this but it’s good that he was at least feeling more for me too something that he says is not quite the same if I’m not around. Like he still mentally thinks about the podcasts he listens too but the feelings aren’t the same if I’m not listening to it with him. I thought that was interesting and it might be good then for us to listen to more of these episodes together because I think there could be a lot of positive in him being more in touch with his feelings if I’m present. He is getting better at dealing with my triggers but he definitely has a way to go. It was only last weekend I was triggered about something, it was do with him sharing stuff on hard drives, it started in relation to sharing music but I became triggered because of all the porn and nudity movies that have been shared and anyhow he immediately became defensive, didn’t hold space for me, couldn’t understand why I would ask or say such things, started making it all about himself and his feelings. It took a good 20 minutes before I could get through to him he’s just doing what he always done, fortunately he was able to pull himself back and let me express myself and tell him my fears and him actually hear me and feel me. I also reminded him of the suggestions in our hold me tight exercises that we should be putting into practice right now and he was able to be more responsive instead of reactive and we actually got through it and enjoyed our walk at the beach. But yes it just shows he definitely still has a way to go but he is slowly changing and improving I think. Just the fact it didn’t end in an argument and we didn’t get stuck in it was a definite improvement.

    Well it’s Sunday afternoon now and I’m looking forward to a relaxing one, maybe some reading, a couple of shows, I’m watching the old SG-1 Stargate at the moment. I recently watched all of Stargate Atlantis and thought I’d go right back to the beginning and watch the first series which I haven’t seen....I don’t mind sci-fi shows especially those centred around space travel. Then maybe I might do a little reading and some gardening for an hour or so....that’s it for now, hope you are all well and enjoying your weekend.

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