Eating the Elephant

Apparently, I sounded down in last week’s post.  It wasn’t intended that way. I was actually feeling optimistic.  I did make a run to the fabric store and craft store.  Came away with a few things.  I even found some of the items on my list at the local Walmart. 

I have been making progress on the less than pleasant projects.  Little bites consume the elephant. 

A couple of dear friends are eyeball deep in the restoration of a cabin while inhabiting it.  She mentioned having an opportunity to go through her recipe collection that has been in storage and it giving her renewed inspiration and enthusiasm to keep on with the less than pleasant portions of the project.

It models the method I have used for years to get things done.  I will make my list of tasks and then set a timer for twenty or thirty minutes and work on the first one till the timer goes off.  If I am really going great, I will keep on till I stall.  I move on to the next item on the list and do the same thing with the timer.  It is sometimes best to stop exactly with the timer.  If the project is going well and the stopping place won’t cause a problem for proper execution, stop on the high point.  When the project comes back around, it will be easier to pick up and move forward. 

For the less than pleasant tasks, I have interspersed the happier ones to work on as well.  For example, I am trying to sort out a box of his papers and get them filed.  An elephant.  I also picked up a fish bowl and some aquatic plants to make a water garden.  A happy project.  I am moving back and forth on chores and projects to keep from getting bogged down.  I don’t always use a timer.  After so many years of doing so, I can “feel” the time. 

We had a good trip this past weekend to the longhorn sale.  He came home with his pick of the lots.  We got to visit with people we care about and only see once or twice a year usually.  The sale has been going on for twenty-four years and some of us have been there since the first one.  The trip for me was like my friend’s perusal of her recipes.  It has given me renewed enthusiasm to push through the less than pleasant things. 

I have been productive yesterday and today.  I read a book, watched a movie, washed clothes. As mentioned earlier, I have worked on his filing. I have taken pleasure in drinking my own coffee on the porch and watching the hummingbirds battle it out for a few drops of sugar water.  Even the elephant projects have been good. 

Reading back over the above paragraph, I should clarify that reading a book and watching a movie count as productive for me since those items are on my lists of things to achieve for personal satisfaction.  The book was one from the 1960’s by a favorite writer, Rosamunde Pilcher.  The movie was one of Margaret Rutherford’s portrayals of Agatha Christie’s Jane Marple.  As an aspiring writer, soaking in the art and craft of storytelling through books and movies is important.  As for the comment about the coffee, one of the only things I struggle with when traveling is missing my morning coffee on the back porch.  Traveling makes me appreciate it more when I do return home. 

Here’s to a good week of creative expression and loving actions, good books and good coffee.  May we have time to play and time to love.  And time to stop and see the beautiful world He has made.

Real Tropical Living

A weather system is moving in from the Gulf.  It may be a tropical storm by landfall.

Thankfully, I had some time in my schedule today to get the yard readied.  I moved my potted palms against the house along with the other pots of plants.  I picked up some odds and ends and put them away in the shed.  I put my yard tools in the shed from the carport.  I took his flag down and put it in the house.

I know it is only forecast to be at most a tropical storm.  Having seen the likes of Rita and Ike, I try to not get nervously excited over it.  Still, the wind and rain can make a mess of things and I wanted to do a little prevention.

I have plenty of food in the house.  Our water company is set up to provide continuous water.  I filled up my car with gas.  I hope the children and he did the same.

I am sitting out here on the porch now sipping coffee and listening to the rain coming down.  Just a regular rain at the moment.  No wind.  The windows are fully open.

This is one of my favorite kinds of moments.  The porch, the rain, the coffee.  My memories hold many moments of enjoying this kind of thing.  I love the sound of rain.  Thunderstorms are awesome to me as well.  No fear, just respect.

My son and his bride are home from the islands for a short visit.  We have had a little time with them.  This storm has disrupted some plans we had made.  But, just the brief moments allowed are appreciated.  So many people love them so much and miss them being here in Texas, we have had to share them more than we would like.  What parent doesn’t want to hold tight to their child after having felt their absence so intensely?

My daughter and I had a wonderful visit cooking gumbo and potato salad and all yesterday.  She, her father and I rode up to see the overfull lake and rivers.  She is full of plans and has an agenda to meet her goals.  Prayerfully, I hope for continued progress and blessings on her path.

I had not realized how quiet my home life had become until they came to see us.  Something about my two children is so intense and vibrant, it tumbles my heart around and I feel unbalanced.  They are not afraid.  We worked so very hard to make sure they were not afraid.  Their courage and boldness is awe-inspiring.  I don’t mind the unbalanced feelings.  It means they are dancing.  Just the way I always hoped.