I know I've not posted anything in quite some time, but I think you'll understand as you read this post.  Here's a quick recap since mid-April. I lost my job. First time ever I've had the experience of a company drumming up crap to fire me. They had fired or forced to resign all but two in my region over the last several months.  It was a matter of time before I was next, but it was still disconcerting as I was being set up. They gave up making things difficult since this apparently didn't drive me to quit and started attacking more directly. So I've been in the ranks of the unemployed since then. 
Gallery101 where I exhibit some of my artwork moved to a new location and I assisted in the construction of the exhibit walls and various other items.  Being unemployed made this possible. The new space is great and the various shows/openings have had very large turnouts. I've had some very positive responses to my work there.
I put my house up for sale thinking the market had recovered enough that I might get some bites in 3 or 4 months.  It went under contract in less than 24 hours, which put me in a mad dash to find an apartment pack and move.  I love my new apartment, though it was a challenge to drop from almost 1400 SF to under 700 SF.  In the end I got everything I wanted...a decent kitchen (though I'm still working out my cooking rhythm in the new kitchen), room for an office/studio space and a little outdoor patio space.  It's a cozy little pad that already feels like home.  I think it took Moseby longer to adjust than me.  He's a sensative little pup and was quite traumatized by the whole packing, move and unpacking routine.  
Here's the oversharing part:  It is a relief to be out of my house.  I've wanted to sell and leave the property for at least 3 1/2 years.  I owned the property with my partner at the time and have not been able to completely sever that relationship because of the connections with the property.  Let's just say she left and provided no assistance, financial or otherwise with regard to the house. That totals to around $30,000 of cost that was her portion. (This kind of crap doesn't just happen to straight people.) I've had to come to terms with the fact that I spent six years of my life with someone who really was not a good person, who has not real personal positive ethics.  There are a lot of questions for me in that situation.
After almost 8 years of paying on that mortgage, I walked with $1,300 in my pocket.  Thank you real estate bubble. (My ex demanded her "half" and was not even willing to let me have enough to cover first & last on my apartment.Nice, huh?) The new buyer actually apologized for buying the house at such a low price, about $5,000 more than I paid 8 years ago.  Financially buying out my ex didn't make sense and the house was more of a vessel of sadness than anything else for me. Most of the very saddest  and emotionally difficult times of my life occurred in that house, including the worst depression of my adulthood. Leaving the house was quite freeing to my spirit and dare I say that a little optimism has crept back in. It was a great house and I had great neighbors, but I needed to leave.
The piece above was done in the new apartment last week. Just a quick effort to get the juices flowing again. More to come!!
My metal shop is located near Gallery101 in the FAT Village burgeoning arts district in Fort Lauderdale.  We (I am sharing the space with another artist) are working out the lease details and hopefully I can be up and running doing Metal work there by the end of this month. 
I'm taking the job loss opportunity to put feelers out for starting my own engineering firm, which will allow me the control and flexibility to focus on my art as much as possibile. I passed my licensing exam in April which means I don't HAVE to work under the wing of licensed engineer.  It's time for me to stop complaining about things being done poorly and go out there and do it myself. I hope to capitalize on a very loyal client following. Wish me luck!
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