Category Archives: General Musings

Losses and Gaines.

Let me tell you something, dear Internet. This summer? Been kind of rough. So by the time Pasha got sick and ruined the rugs, only to be followed by our basement flooding, I was well worn out. Lately, life feels too short and too fragile to be so fully occupied by such disasters. So, in a manner unfamiliar to me…

I bought a ticket to California.

(and new rugs).

I leave for a week next month. (J. will stay home to man the homefront, water the garden, care for the pup, and miss me terribly, I presume). Any recommendations for sight seeing in San Diego and LA?

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The Last Weekend.

John left for Ireland, and after dropping him off at his 5 AM bus to the airport, I couldn’t fall back asleep and instead cleaned the entire house and weeded the garden. Then I organized John’s dresser. (He’ll be annoyed by that).

My mom visited, and we chopped down the 6 trees and countless weedy-vines that populated the alleyway alongside my garage. We also got pedicures and saw The Very Best Exotic Marigold Hotel (it’s very cute).

My neighbors returned from Hawaii and gave me chocolate covered macadamia nuts as a thank-you for caring for their garden while they were gone. I plan on eating them for dinner.

 

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The marathon begins next week.

Life is about to get very full, dear Internet, but oh so exciting!

Next week, I start my Masters in Social Work (!). I also start a new work schedule, which I have to survive until August. In August, I start a new job at the University (while continuing classes – it’s an assistantship! and it’s going to be amazing!), which I’ll hold until May. In May, I’ll start 6 months of field work. After that, I’ll be a-graduating (Lord willing!). And after that? I can get to work fixing this dreary world of ours.

Blogging may be few and far between … or it may be as frequent as ever. I’m not quite sure yet. But I hope you’ll stick around, either way. By the end, I should have some great stories to tell.

(A small point of business: I’m searching for a replacement for my current job, so if you know of anyone with grant writing experience and an interest in consulting, get in touch! Local is preferred, but telecommuting may be an option for the right person.).

So, here we go!

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Life lately (and the garden update you’ve been sorely missing)

I spent a week on the beach with half of my family (and all of my husband), seeking shade like it was my full time job and drinking wine out of a water bottle as the classy ladies do. It was a lovely getaway, despite a multitude of small disasters it included (Oh, you know, I just left my luggage at home thanks to a miscommunication regarding packing the car. And then J lost his prescription glasses. At the airport, J’s laptop took a tumble at Security and broke. Then we came home, and our fridge had died. Ay yi yi!).

While we were away, the garden exploded (thanks in part to some dear friends who tended to it in my absence).

Strawberries are finished for the year, and the lettuce is nearing the end. You can see that the romaine has already bolted. Boo. The other plants in the front are zucchini (x2) and leeks. Green onions (from seed) are mixed into the flower garden.

The back patch is just now getting going (full of peas, zucchini, cucumber, spaghetti squash, tomatoes, peppers, and basil). I planted morning glories around the compost bin, hoping that their vines will latch onto the chicken wire and hid the entire mess from view, but they haven’t started climbing yet … sigh.

The new flower patch has filled in nicely, and the sage has turned into a bit of a bully, crowding out some other plants. I spent a good 20 minutes trimming it this weekend. Excuse Pasha’s digging holes, by the way. That naughty pup.

And finally, there’s quite a show going on near the house (including a volunteer sunflower from last year’s batch!). Lucky us, a family of Cardinals have moved into one of those bushes and there’s an egg in the nest. So exciting!

A garden detail, for those who are interested …

– After some internal debate, I mulched the vegetable patches this year. We’re anticipating a dry summer, so it should help with water retention in the soil and weed repression. I do worry about the soil temperature (lettuce, peas, and pepper appreciate cooler roots), but I gave those plants a wider berth and have my fingers crossed that they won’t mind too much. We’ll see!

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Word.

You don’t have to get a job that makes others feel comfortable about what they perceive as your success. You don’t have to explain what you plan to do with your life. You don’t have to justify your education by demonstrating its financial rewards. You don’t have to maintain an impeccable credit score. Anyone who expects you to do any of those things has no sense of history or economics or science or the arts.

You have to pay your own electric bill. You have to be kind. You have to give it all you got. You have to find people who love you truly and love them back with the same truth.

But that’s all.

You read Dear Sugar, don’t you? This is from an article of hers, one of my very favorites, and it’s a sentiment that’s important to keep in mind in the world of Facebook and Blogging and So What Do You Do? (I’m speaking to myself, as well as to you, dear Internet).

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Doing my taxes makes me feel like a genius.

That’s all.

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A summary of weekend accomplishments.

  • The mini fence is gone, and we do not regret it for a minute, second, millisecond. I’ll show you a photo once the landscape shuffling is complete (… April?).
  • J. and I unexpectedly took 2 ferry rides this weekend. I wish I knew how to program my GPS to give me a heads up “Oh, by the way, this route will TAKE YOU ON A BOAT.” (Ferry rides in farmland? you ask inquisitively. We sped to St. Louis for a night and were directed to get there via the RIVER. Color me surprised.)
  • TULIPS. What?!
  • I bought a cultivator for the garden, and all my seeds are planted and under lights. BOOM. Last frost is expected by April 17th (for our area), although with the forecast in the 80s all week long that’s likely a unneeded estimate. I’m about a week behind where I should be, but I’m hoping my grow lights will give me the advantage (fingers crossed!).

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Lack of self control.

Bad news: I spent $11 on chocolate today at Walgreens.

Good news: The cashier told me that I had “the loveliest smile.”

Bad news: $11 worth of chocolate is not good for your smile.

Good news: Doing it anyway.

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I’ll bowl you a strike in return.

My dad likes to tell one singular story from my college years, and that is how he almost had a heart attack when he learned that his daughter was spending his hard-earned tuition payments on a bowling class.

(To my credit, it was to satisfy a gym requirement. But I use the term “gym” loosely here, as no one forbid you from ordering cheese fries during class).

6 years later, I’m pleased to report that those skills are going to be put to some good use.

On March 3rd, I’m bowling to benefit our local Big Brothers, Big Sisters organization. Big Brothers, Big Sisters is a community organization aimed at nurturing children and building stronger communities. The effects that a positive adult mentor can have on a child’s life are incredible, and I urge you to learn more about this worthy organization here.

This-Here-City will never be my hometown, but there are times where I feel the strongest sense of ownership towards it – more so than St. Louis, where I lived for 18 years; more so than Kansas City, where I fell in love; more so than D.C. and Cambridge, where I learned how to be independent. When I moved here 2 years ago, I had the realization that it was up to me to make this my community, and with that came the requirement of personal investment. Thanks to my involvement with the local Junior League and Crisis Nursery, I’ve become so very aware of all the things that are broken, but also of how such things can be mended. Mind you, I’m writing this on my lunch break, after waking up at dawn to care for babes-in-crisis prior to starting my workday, so I know how very true this is: it’s not easy work, but it is so worth doing. 

More so than you donating, I would love if you would find an organization in your community to invest in. But as practicality requires: this is a fundraiser, so I would also love your money. You can support me here (every penny counts!).

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Valentine.

John got his Valentine’s day gift a bit early this year.

Ever since we brought home The New Couch and its accompanying Throw Pillows, we’ve been fighting over the red Kantha pillow. It is so soft, many a weekend has been lost thanks to its transformative power of turning a “quick lie down” into a “four hour nap,” and we both want it to ourselves all the time. So now, we each have our own.

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