Friday, September 28, 2012


Let me start by stating that I'm not usually one to gripe and complain. I'm also not one who believes that people should never do so. I do believe that our thoughts and words make our reality. I don't believe that stifling or twisting what is a true emotion at that given point in time is any more or less healthy than letting it out.

That said, September has been a funky roller coaster month for me. I've slacked on being assertive in scheduling time with friends (although that does work both ways). I haven't gotten past step one on the Fly Lady program (Shine Your Sink). I haven't volunteered at Harvester's. I've been stressed about finances. I have been irritated more often than not. This is not to say I haven't had joyous, even elated, moments.

I have had laugh-out-loud moments. I've had moments of childlike abandon and fun. Sweetie got some unexpected extra hours which eased some stress about finances. My church job paid for me to attend a conference so I could learn more about the sound board I use and its capabilities. I went on a work trip to Pennsylvania and got a real experience of what a "live install" should be like - and I really enjoyed every minute of it. I've been busier at the weekday job and I'm feeling productive. I ran into a friend at my bar job that I hadn't seen or heard from in 10 years and we talked and laughed for more than an hour. My cheeks hurt on the drive home from so much smiling and laughing.

It's been quite a month. Stress is a sensitive emotion. Ten minutes of stress can suck an hour's worth of joy into oblivion. A day's worth of wallowing in the emotions that come along with, or from, the stress can take a toll on the immune system. Then, I'm stressed and sick.

I was sick from Friday night through Tuesday evening. It was absolutely boring and irritating. I don't get paid sick leave from the weekend jobs so I probably made it worse by going in on those days. Luckily though, I do get paid sick leave from the weekday job so on Monday and Tuesday I did nothing but lay on the couch, make hot tea with lemon & honey, and sit on the patio in the sun. I am certain that the sun plays a part in healing me. If nothing else, it keeps me from getting so gloomy from sitting around all day long.

As a result of me laying around all week, the house is getting messy again. Thursday night I finally got to the bottom of the sink and wiped down the counters. So one thing is complete and that minor accomplishment actually made me feel great last night - rather than overwhelmed at what else lay ahead.

The 31-day William Morris Project starts Monday and I want the house as clean as I can get it before then. It's much easier to tackle an organizing/purging/renovating project when I'm not looking at a mess to begin with.

I thought about writing each of the projects from the list out on slips of paper and sorting them out by how much time they should take to complete. That way on the days when I only have about 30 minutes to do something, I can pick from the "quickie" pile. And on weekends when I have nothing else planned, I can pick from a 4-8 hour pile. I tend to over-categorize and over-organize and over-plan when I gear up for new projects.

Then I figured I'd just print the list and pin it to the wall instead. I can just as easily scan the list with my finger and decide what I have time to do. Making piles of projects to pick from is just making more work. Unnecessary work.

October is going to be a productive month for me. I can feel it. I'm going to be busy, the house is going to get cleaner and more organized, I'm going to be spending time with friends and I'm going to be happier.

Happy Autumn everyone!

Friday, September 21, 2012

And We're Walkin'!

Sweetie and I have started walking Max regularly. He had recently been laid up for a few weeks to recover from a pulled muscle and while he was resting, we were out discovering new places to walk him! We found a few paved trails we liked with little-to-no interaction with other dogs, both of which were under a mile each. While I was out of state for work, Sweetie encountered issues with both trails and went out in search (with Max) for a new trail. They discovered our new favorite trail together and thankfully everything worked out well!

This new trail is a 14-mile crushed gravel terrain that runs along one of the railway systems as well as a little river. There are plenty of native wildflowers and wildlife to keep both our eyes and Max's nose busy. We walk 2 miles if Max seems slow and 3 miles if he's pulling along.

We have walked the trail together 5 times so far and we've seen (among the more normal sightings) deer, great blue herons, a beaver, and a ginormous spider that I couldn't identify at the time but after some internet research appears to be a female wolf spider carrying her young. I know some people are heebie-jeebie about spider pics so here's a link to click if you *want* to see it. ( You're welcome!

We've started carrying the flip-cam with us to catch video of the wildlife but I think they know we have the camera and are camera shy because ever since we started bringing it, the wildlife has either been too far away or too fast to catch before hiding.

I'm really looking forward to seeing the changes of summer to fall along this trail in the next month. 

Wednesday, September 5, 2012


I apparently need to enter "Write Blog" into a schedule for the week. I recently decided to get back into the habit of a routine but "computer time" was not considered for the schedule of things to do each night. I don't know how long it takes others to write a decent post, but it takes me longer than an hour. Last month, an hour or more was not a problem because I wasn't doing anything besides sitting on the couch and ignoring our mess of a house. Now an hour seems unthinkable but breaking it up into pieces seems doable. I'll figure something out. When you notice regular posts you'll know that I've come up with a solution!

I have ideas pop into my head quite often of what to blog about but I don't write it down. I always think I'll remember but rarely do. Starting now, I will start noting those ideas in my phone for reference later.

The rest of September will be dedicated to creating a routine of housecleaning that becomes second nature. I'm already happier being in our house with the few things that I've started doing on a regular basis. I am looking forward to a clean house that can accept company at ANY time without worry of what our friends will think of our seemingly slovenly ways. I'm also looking forward to not going into marathon cleaning mode at the announcement of a surprise visit, but instead having the time to whip up a snack or beverage to offer when they get there. I'm using FlyLady to help me get back into that routine of cleaning since I've let it slide for so long that I can't just jump back into how I did it years ago.

Starting October 1st, I'll be posting every day because I'm participating in the second annual 31 Days of William Morris with Jules at Pancakes & French Fries.

William Morris' often quoted philosphy on interior design.

made a list earlier this year of all the things both Sweetie and I wanted done around the house that I have created as a page linked to the side bar on the right. Quite a bit on that list is "Organize" and "Purge". I'll do my best to make every entry as entertaining as possible, but let's face it: sometimes an organized junk drawer is just not that exciting to read about.

By October 31st, I fully expect every room in our house to be both useful and beautiful. As an additional challenge, I plan to do all 31 days without spending money on the projects. Craigslist will be our friend!

I think November would be a good month to start a different series. I'm leaning toward art or music - both of which are pieces of me that I've buried over the years and often reminisce about. Art could easily be another daily series. I'll have to think more about a music one. I have a few ideas (30 instruments, 30 songs, 30 scales, 30 techniques) but haven't wrapped my head around how to make a post about them. Maybe YouTube?

So yes, I've been distracted but as you can see that is going to change.