Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Maybe Just a Little Eleven O'clockish?

Sometimes it seems that the things that stand out most during our days are the annoyances. The little and sometimes not so little daily annoyances often color and shape our attitude, our ambition and affect the overall quality of our day. That sucks. Let's face it, we all let this happen. We are not perfect.

Yesterday was Tuesday but I had a MONDAY. This was of course after the first Monday which was also a MONDAY. I chalked the first Monday MONDAY up to being the day after a holiday and the first day back on schedule after Spring Break and our family's stay-cation. It was also the first day of my husband's new job; start to a new career. I confess to carrying a load of anticipation and worry all day long while he was away. I really wanted him to have an amazing day and come home eager and thrilled with his choice to follow this path. On a side note here, he did have a great day and things are looking good for him.

Back to my Tuesday that behaved like a MONDAY. I had such plans for Tuesday. I had a wonderful balance worked out between housework and professional work. For those of you who work from home, you know and understand that sometimes your best plans for getting it all done go awry. Hence, annoyances. thought I forgot what I had originally began posting about, didn't you? Nope, I was getting around to the whole annoyances thing.

I sent the teen off to school via bus, got settled in and had just finished my breakfast and second cup of coffee when I got a text message from teen. "Come get me. I feel like S*%T."Normally the teen would never use an expletive in front of me, let alone in a direct text so I knew that he was indeed truly sick and he needed me. I got to the school as quick as possible and loaded my alarmingly green son into the car and tried to get him home with as little vibration to further upset his already churning insides.

So with a sick kid at home, there went my originally scheduled program of finely timed errands, meetings and so forth. Annoyances? Yes, but my kid was sick and I decided that I would embrace this time of him actually needing and appreciating me taking care of him because at 15, it simply doesn't happen that much any more.  It was wonderfully liberating to kick the annoyances out of my way and embrace the new day.

It was indeed a new day. I scrapped most of my original schedule and enjoyed being Mom. Fortunately, by afternoon, the bulk of the stomach issues passed and he appeared on the mend, even asking for some bland food. Despite the rescheduling of my day, the other annoyances that cropped up...from computer programs that wouldn't load to ants in the bathroom to a lost (and needed) disc for my printer...I made conscious choices all day to stay positive. And it worked. I not only nursed the kid back to health but I was able to complete three assignments, get my hair cut, do laundry, cook a great meal for the hubs and squeeze in a late workout.

I guess my point is, is that so often (me, especially) we let the daily annoyances pile up until they are such a burden we are trudging hunched with them heaped haphazardly on our shoulders. The longer we trudge the worse we feel until the only thing we can see is a haze of anger, disgust and even depression.

So how did I stay positive yesterday? Honestly, I don't know. I think I was simply tired of being weighed down. I said, the hell with it, I was going to be content and productive despite things going awry.

So the next time you have a MONDAY on a Tuesday or any other day of the week, remember to breathe, say the hell with it and then firmly tell yourself you are going to do the best you can with the day you were given. You CAN do it. 

"When late morning rolls around and you're feeling a bit out of sorts, 
don't worry; you're probably just a little eleven o'clockish."
Winnie the Pooh

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Is it May, yet?

April's been kicking my butt. I thought I'd have more of a balance with home, writing and so forth but apparently not. I thought March was supposed to be the month to come in like a lion, but in our home, it's been April that has reared, roared and presented multiple challenges.

Biggest and scariest is the hubs changing jobs. Actually it's not just a job change--it's a career change. He's excited, nervous and every other emotion you can attach to a big life change. Of course these changes affect the rest of us that share our lives with him but I keep telling myself--change is good.  Right?

I'm choosing to focus on this philosophy regarding change... 

"Change always comes bearing gifts."  (Price Pritchett)

As for me, I support the hubs and am his biggest cheerleader but my own work has kept me busy. Last week I wrote 20 articles for one project and a single one for a different project. I'm not complaining, because I truly love this work and am proud of what I am accomplishing. But maybe, just maybe this swirling whirlwind that has been April is the reason why I'm feeling a bit worn down.

On the bright side, my grass is green and flowers are beginning to bloom. That's a good omen, right? 

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

And One Things Leads to Another

It all began with a ceiling fan. Maybe some of you perform this ritual twice a year the same as we do in our house. In the fall we flip the fan switch so the blades rotate, pushing the air up allowing the heat to circulate better through the room during the cold winter months. In the spring we flip the switch the opposite direction and the blades push the air down cooling the room for spring and summer.

This last couple of weeks we have had a barrage of both cold and warm weather but as we are now almost a week into April, I decided I needed to flip the switch so I could feel a gentle cooling breeze as I sit on the couch with my laptop working. It was a good plan. Then I realized that the couch was positioned directly under the ceiling fan and would have to be moved for me to reach it. Okay, no problem, right? Ha.

Our living room ceiling is vaulted and our couch weighs approximately 2 tons because my husband HAD to have furniture for "big" men (he's six foot three.) So I pulled out the heavy duty step ladder, grunted and shoved the couch out of the way and flipped the switch.

Project done. Complete, right? Wrong.

I had to notice that the ceiling fan needed dusting and what the heck, I already had the step ladder out. I climbed down and got the duster. In moments that project was done but wait, where did some of those dust clumps fall? On the floor, of course. No problem the vacuum was already out from yesterday's cleaning project. A few quick swipes of the vacuum and no more dust clumps.

But wait...looking at the new angle of the couch sparked a thought. Wouldn't it be nice to move the couch just a bit so I could see out the front windows when I was writing? And I would still be under the fan area so I would still have my gentle breeze. Hmmmm, sounded great.

Two hours later.......................Every piece of furniture in the room had been moved, the baseboards wiped down, the windows scrubbed, tables dusted, every corner vacuumed and the cats totally freaked out with all the frenzied activity. Sigh...but a contented sigh. I now have a view, a breeze and spring-cleaned room!

Does this ever happen to you? You start what is a simple, quick project and it blossoms into a project of epic proportions? I find it happens to me often. Not sure if it's a good or bad thing but I do know I am usually left with a feeling of contentment upon completion and most days that makes it worth it.  

Saturday, April 2, 2011

A Brand New Day

I'm back after a month and I’ve been thinking a lot about change lately. Maybe it’s the onset of spring or maybe it’s simply that my daily routine has stopped being routine. I actually like change, most of the time. And I have been enjoying the variety in my routine but there is something nice about, well…routine. However, when the routine is no longer efficient, then maybe it’s time to make a change or two.

But change can be a bit scary or at the very least unsettling and annoying.

“Those who expect moments of change to be comfortable and free of conflict have not learned their history.” (Joan Wallach Scott)

Change is very rarely comfortable. However, it can be exhilarating or at the very least, mildly exciting. When I begin a new project, I usually get a tingle in the pit of my gut, not butterflies but more like caterpillars dancing a two-step. It’s a giddy feeling that can even produce an involuntary giggle. If these symptoms are not present at the start of a new project or when I’m about to embark down a new path in life, I step back and seriously question if the change is right.

I remember waiting in the bride’s room before I was to walk down the aisle at my wedding more than 18 years ago. The caterpillars had invited over all their little critter friends and were having a raucous disco in my gut, dancing and frolicking. Marriage…a HUGE change that was definitely going to alter my routine. I remember a breathless giggle escaping as I clutched my bouquet and struggled to keep the giddies at bay so I could make it down the aisle.

 “All changes, even the most longed for, have their melancholy; for what we leave behind us is a part of ourselves; we must die to one life before we can enter another.”  (Anatole France)

It’s okay (and normal) to be nervous, cautious and/or sad when leaving behind the familiar for something new and untested but don’t let those feelings stop you from taking that forward step. Change can be very rewarding.

So for me these first few weeks of spring will bring about several changes. My son now has his driver’s learning permit (something I will be posting about very soon), my husband is embarking on a life-changing new project and I am leaving behind my comfortable routine to try something new too.

I’ve been plinking away here and there at my WIP for several months but a busy freelance project had me putting it on the back burner. It’s time now to make time to unravel the conversations, scenes and elements that have been swirling in my brain for the last few months. It’s time for moving forward. No more waiting for the right time because there will always be something going on to distract. This feels right because the giddy giggles have been escaping off and on for the last week. 

I leave you today with one of my favorite quotes about change from Mary Englebreit.  

“If you don't like something change it; if you can't change it, change the way you think about it.”