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Archive for November, 2007

That Rusty Can

The other morning it was so frosty and beautiful outside that I had to take some pictures. My header picture was taken in my backyard where our property borders a horse pasture. The can in the shot was Dan’s BB gun target. (I absolutely refused to let him shoot the rabbits…) A few years ago, when Dan procured said gun, we set up many a can and embraced our present surroundings (read: Arkansas) and let er’ rip. I had never shot a gun before, and frankly, I quite enjoyed it. Most of the cans landed in the horse pasture. We just pretended we didn’t see them. And really, should we have been expected to pick up those cans, what with all the barbed wire and the steaming horse crap?
Well, one day Sadie and I were playing in the backyard and this lady comes walking along the horse’s side of the fence. She was older, with a dirty green bandanna holding her hair back. She was wearing large rubber boots, and carrying a garbage bag. She was frowning, and seemed rather cranky. “Good Morning!” I said to her over the fence.

“Well it would be a good mornin’ if ‘twernt fer those crazy kids shootin’ up cans” she answered me. “I found me 4 cans already! Who would do such a thing on someone else’s property?” I nodded sympathetically and muttered something about kids these days and what a travesty it was. Then I saw it: that one rusty telltale can sitting there on the fence.

I casually draped my arm over the evidence and cleared my throat. “uh, have lovely day, ma’am.”

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The House Muse visited me today; I vacuumed and swept and straightened. And she told me something: “Your perfectionism is doing you no good,” she said. “I give you permission to do a half-assed job. Don’t worry about the corners; those spiders can wait until I visit you again. That will also be the day that you will feel like mopping.”

“Thank you, House Muse,” I answered. “I shall embrace your half-assed philosophy, and use it in every area of my life.”

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Sometimes I spend far too much energy on trying to identify what I’m feeling. It is so in my make up to communicate, that I’m usually going overboard with my feeling descriptions. So I’m sitting on the couch feeling something unpleasant. Vague anxiety, passivity, emptiness–I’m just not sure…and I say to Dan: “I feel invisible inside. Like I’m not anchored to anything.” I’m digging deep, trying to explain it. I go on some more, and he says: “Oh. It sounds like you’re bored.”

He was totally right.

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Free Fever

Does every library have a free table where you can drop off your old magazines? For some reason, I cannot resist this area of our local library. Yesterday I picked up two catalogs made especially for women over 50 who want to buy the same clothes they have always worn, only new. And not new versions, either. THE EXACT SAME THING. Now I know where my Grandma bought those housecoats she wore in the eighties: The Tog Shop.

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Anyway, I also picked up five Reader’s Digests from 2006, that upon perusal, I realized I had read before. Do they have a support group for this?

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So I’m thinking about graduate school. Thinking about it A LOT. My big worry is that I’ll look back and say ‘yeah, I got that degree, but I missed years of Sadie’s life.’ Because I’m not that good multi-tasking. I can be somewhat (ahem…) all or nothing. Balance is hard for me to come by NOW–and I only have a 10 hour a week job. What if I were enrolled in a graduate program? Would I disappear altogether?

And then there are my motives. (Must I always examine those pesky things??) Do I want a degree because I’ll feel like a more valid person? Do I believe it will be the answer to the proverbial What Am I Here For, Anyway question? Like Oh, NOW I know what I want to be when I grow up. Having an advanced degree, much like the idea of publishing a book, should, I believe, fill the vacuous hole inside me that begs for affirmation, and, well, worship. There I said it. I will be worshipped if 1), I publish a book; Or 2), obtain an advanced degree.

Somehow wanting to be worshipped seems wrong to me. Didn’t someone get booted out of heaven for that?

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I have decided that I’m ok even if I don’t make a schedule for housekeeping. Even if I don’t swish out the toilet every day or vaccum on Tuesdays, I am still a fine person. When did I get it in my head that my housekeeping ability equaled my worth as an individual? It is about time I look at myself and say Just because I do it differently (or not at all…) doesn’t mean I am a failure.

I have given myself permission to follow the House Muse. I’m just going to wait until I damn well feel like it, that’s what. But hold on there missy, says an evil voice inside my head, If you wait until you FEEL like doing something, you’ll never clean the bathroom.

HA! I say to that evil voice, I CLEANED MY BATHROOM YESTERDAY!

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