#25 Rent a cabin close to this city

Done, just got back from two lovely weeks with the doggies, at a cabin only 30 minutes from my place. It felt like a different world. The boys had a fabulous time, playing in the water, running along the nearby trails. 

I'm going back there in the Fall. 

#100 Buy a lottery subscription

Not much to write here, but today I did it. I could feel my new citrine abundance ring glowing on my right hand as I purchased my year-long 649 subscription. It won't actually start for another 4-6 weeks, but then I'm sure the money will start rolling in.

You can't win if you don't buy a ticket, right? 

#96 Change my insurance beneficiary

 I finally mailed off the change in beneficiary form on Thursday. I got it from Personnel more than a week before, but it seemed that a number of obstacles kept coming up--first I didn't have the full name and birthdate of the friend whom I wanted to name, and needed to think of a discreet way of asking. Then, I realized I needed to have a witness and, although I was tempted to just make up a name and signature (since hopefully this information won't be used for a long time and who would remember signing that anyway) I decided to do it properly just in case there was any hassle. I don't want B, the new beneficiary, to be given a hard time by Brother, who is no doubt certain that he would gain a lot of cash if anything happened to me.

The thing is, Brother hasn't bothered to return my phone calls in months, and we haven't seen each other in more than a year. My insurance amounts to 5X my yearly salary, and with what I earn now, that is a life-changing amount of cash. If someone kicked me that amount of money right now, I wouldn't be able to quit my job, but I could certainly pay off all my debts, including my mortgage, buy the small cottage I dream about, take a fabulous dream vacation, and still have lots of cash to put in the bank. B has been a great friend to me for the past 25 years and he and his wife just had a baby girl. They deserve that money way more than Brother does, and I am sure they would do something positive  with it, even something that would remember me well. 

Still, it was a little sad mailing off that form. Another connection severed with Brother, and he's completely oblivious as usual.

#21 Visit Israel

 Done, spent five days there, four in Jerusalem and one in Tel Aviv. Visited the West Bank, too. The whole place is surreal--way more developed than other parts of the region yet with this undercurrent of what can only be described as oppression. The government has convinced itself that it is justified in treating the Palestinians like crap in order to protect its "security."  Jerusalem is particularly tense, what with the wall and the Israeli settlement houses right in the middle of the Palestinian neighbourhoods. 

Tel Aviv is a different story. One of the people I met in Jerusalem told me that 60 per cent of Israelis were concerned about the future of their country. I thought that the other 40 per cent must be smoking crack, but then I visited Miami on the Med, and realized that over a third of the Israeli population lives there. Go figure.

Still, the airport security officials were particularly concerned about the books in my suitcase on the way out. Seems that they do not like you to receive printed material from the Palestinian side. Luckily, I hadn't, since I didn't need to--it's all available on the internet anyway. 

#13 Drive down to the US for a weekend of outlet shopping

 The destination: Syracuse, NY.

The weekend: Easter 2009

The mission: hit Target, Lane Bryant, the nearby outlet malls. And take the doggies on their first cross-border trip

The results: spectacular, the boys were super well-behaved in the hotel and crossing the border was easy in both directions.

 I scored: a great neutral linen dress, several t-shirts, a pair of cool sport shoes, a couple of pairs of jeans, a print skirt I can wear with my flat brown Duo boots. 

I didn't get: the two pantsuits I really need to pick up before my trip to the Middle East next month.