Archive for the ‘Random’ Category

This is hard

All this impending change… it’s time to ACT, but action seems somehow disrespectful to the upheaval this is causing in my relationship. I don’t have a lot of choice. Things need to get done. I’m torn. I’m hurting. He’s hurting. Things right now just feel like This Better Be Worth It. It will be. Right?

I’m driving up to my hometown Monday to pick up my father’s old bedroom set that my sister kindly offered to store for 3 months about 10 months ago. I rented a cargo van, which is not an easy task, and will drive up one day and come back the next. The bedroom set will get dropped off at the farm.

My biggest fear right now is the loneliness that will be the first few weeks at the least. I think I’m going to be living alone for the first spate of time. I haven’t lived alone since 1998ish. I really do love the life that I currently have. Leaving that life, not the job stuff, but the life—the community, comfort, love, that I currently have—is terrifying. I don’t want to be lonely. Sitting alone at night and endlessly on the phone or turning to the TV for company. I don’t want to miss my boyfriend, my dog, my friends, the joy and comfort that I find in my day to day right now. I know and recognize that part of this huge change is knowing that the path I’m on will not lead to Happy. It will not lead to Less Stressed Out. It will not lead to any of the things I want for my life, but that doesn’t mean that there aren’t the good points. The happy points. The things that I just have to hope that this will make up for, and that the new normal will have as many Happy Points as right now… once I get there.


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That’s right. FIVE weeks from today my whole world is going to change. I have been dreaming about this day since I left the farm in 2004. Now, I’m nervous, and slightly terrified, and cautiously little-kid excited.

Last week, everything came to a head. There will not be another contract offered from the comfortable, but not happy-making, current job. So, no back-up plan that I did not plan on taking but somehow felt more cushiony comfortable. And, I will have to move to the farm to work on the farm. That was a big detail that got left out in the deal negotiations these past several months. And lordy, what an email chain of angst that was. So, I will go live on the farm, because I want this. The boyfriend and I will make it work and figure it out in separate houses but still together. Then, a date was set. April 5, 2010, I report for duty. I will be a farm worker.

Five weeks.

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There’s a lot swirling around in my head right now about personal focus and perspective. About how this world is what we make it. About how we can actually change ourselves, change our perspective, change our focus. Only we can do that for ourselves.

It started with good old Crazy Aunt Purl’s New Year’s post.  Specifically #2—come from a place of yes. Go ahead and read that and then come back. This concept is something I’ve been working on for years now. Slowly. I have long recognized I was brought up with exactly the opposite attitude. I was brought up in a house that recognized the negative, harshly judged the different, and squelched possibility. At some point I stepped back and listened to myself (again) and said NO. I don’t want to end up an old woman who carps and complains, unable to see the good, unable to see the beauty, unable to recognize and share in joy, crippled by my own defensiveness, feeding my loneliness.

I want to live my life seeing the happy things around me, being grateful for all the good that my world encompasses and focusing on the beauty and joy in the world. I want to think that people try hard and do their best at the time. I want to listen in a way that assumes the other person has the best intentions with their words, even if they come out wrong. I want to see the possibility in the day, in my dreams. It is so true that you notice what you look for, and I want to look for the good.

It’s not easy. I can see the ways that I’m slowly changing. One of my biggest pain points is how to deal with the negativity around me. I feel that I come to the brink of confrontation at times because I’m trying to deflect another’s negativity through conversations where I, in the end, sound defensive and judgemental. I think that’s a big growth point I need to focus upon this year. I need to accept another person’s viewpoint as their own, and know that it does not need to shade mine.

This is my year of possibility. This is my year of taking the plunge and making something possible that I’ve been slowly feeding and forming a dream about since before I knew I had started dreaming. This is my year of action. I’m exhilarated. I’m terrified. I’m ready.

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  1. I had the realization this morning that I woke up just about exactly 12 hours after I arrived home from work yesterday. This means I had 4 hours of time that was not dedicated to sleeping, getting ready for work, or working in my 24-hour day.  In that time, I try to fit exercise, dinner making and eating and cleaning up, any phone calls with friends or family, any reading or some knitting or any other hobby-like activity, and any household chores. No wonder I’m so stressed out and can’t keep up and am desperately ready for change.
  2. The sun is out today! For now. Yay sun!
  3. I got to stand in that sun for 7 minutes while waiting for my first train this morning. While it was nice to soak in some sun, that is way too long between trains for rush hour. (I waited 5 minutes for my second train, which totals 12 minutes added on to my commute.  Yes, I am obsessed with this because of #1 above).
  4. People on the metro in the morning, especially the very, very crowded metro where there is no room to even shift position, let alone read a book, wear some of the most blank faces I’ve ever seen. It’s like a can of zombie sardines.
  5. Working for the metro must be one of the most thankless jobs in DC/MD/VA.
  6. It’s two of my friends’ birthdays today! Yay!
  7. Another friend had a baby girl last night. So very wonderful!
  8. I have almost finished another mitten, and I like it. That makes me happy.

That is all. Happy Thursday!

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That makes me want to write here again.

I think the word that can adequately sum up last year is INTENSE. Life seemed to take place in screams. I’d like to make 2010 more like positive movement forward. Or less stress. Or, if we have to use one word, how about Growth. It’s time to stop talking about the shit that would make me happy and DO it. That whole ‘life is what you make it’ thing.

So, of course, I’m starting by organizing the piles of yarn and projects that have accumulated. That is the most important thing, right? I mean, when your knitting habit starts to get stressful, you know it’s time to act. So, currently, this is my dining room table.

getting organized

Wish me luck.

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Saturday’s Haul

I can’t for the life of me, even in the HTML, fix the super bad ugly formatting below. I’ve tried for two days, and have been completely unsuccessful. Apologies in advance…

Saturday”s Market Haul:

1.5 pint blackberries
1.5 pint black raspberries
1 pint raspberries
5 pints strawberries
4.5 pints blueberries
2 pints cherries
red cabbage
green beans
mushrooms (porcini, morel, honey)
peppers (hot and sweet)
white turnips
sweet potatoes
pb cookies
flower bouquet

I’m steeping the cream right now to make lavender cardamom ice cream. It’s a total experiment and I have no idea what to expect. I’m steeping 1 cup of cream with 1/4 cup cardamom seeds and probably 3/4 cup lavender, with 1/4 cup sugar stirred in. Tomorrow I’ll make the ice cream. I had a ton of fun with herbal ice cream and sorbets last year–basil vanilla, strawberry pineapple sage, chocolate mint chocolate chip–I’m silly excited about how this will turn out.

As for the rest of the berry bonanza, we’re having blueberry pancakes for dinner tonight, there will be berry yogurt for breakfast all week, snacking, freezing, scones, and blueberry muffins are the current plans. I haven’t decided about the rhubarb yet.

The garden is getting huge. What started as this:

Early garden

Early garden

Early Garden

Early Garden

Is now this:

garden 015

June Garden

garden 016

Hyacinth Bean Flower

June Garden

June Garden

Balloon Pepper

Balloon Pepper

Unknown Pepper

Unknown Hot Pepper

Hope Lilies

Hope Lilies

garden 014

German Chamomile

Everything is big and robust and happy. It’s been super fun to watch. We made some hot sauce out of the unknown peppers this past week, and it looks like we’ll have enough to make another batch at least. The yellow and super funky balloon peppers were started over the winter from seed. One tomato plant has one tiny fruit, which is so very exciting. The cucumbers are huge and flowering. We have a jalapeno and a cayenne on those plants, the potted herbs are plotting with the nasturtiums to take over the world, and they hyacinth beans are showing off like mad, making the purple hulle peas and cowpeas all self-conscious, but they’ll catch up before we know it.

Oh. And the fennel, that was sold to me as dill, is also ginormous. What the heck do I do with fennel?

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A quick peek

In the ground:
Tomatoes (2 Cherokee Purple, Tiffen Mennonite, Omar’s Lebanese, and Billy Bob’s somethingorother)
Pole Beans (4 Purple Hyacinth, 6 Purple Hulled Peas, 6 Cowpeas)
Pickling Cucumbers (I think 18)
Hot Peppers (Jalapeno, Cayenne, Habanero, 3 Limon, 2 Balloon, and 2 unknown)
Broccoli (6)
Rainbow Chard (6)
Herbs (Sage, Italian Basil, Purple Basil, Cilantro, Parsley, oregano)

In pots:
Chocolate Mint (4)
Red Leaf Lettuce (6)
Bee Balm
Lavender (2)
German Chamomile (2)
Lemon Verbena
Tomatoes (2 Cherokee Purple)

On the needles:
Star Cross’d Love (rav link)
Dishcloths (I’m half way through my 4th)

That’s a whole lot of happy.

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