Forgetting

I had a sign on my icebox for a long while a long while back. I still keep the saying close at hand, though for some reason other things crowded it from the icebox front. 

 It reads:

What really important thing are you forgetting to do?

I ask that question on many different levels.  Did I pay the fuel card bills?  Did I ask him to check the propane tank level?  Did I ask the Lord forgiveness for my recent failures of character?  Did I put water in the dog’s bowl? Am I sure I checked all the supply levels for baking Christmas cookies?

From trivial to profound and back to trivial.

One question that haunts me was asked me on the day we buried Mother.  What are you going to do with the rest of your life?  At the time, all I could think of was raising the children.  At ages 10 (nearly 11) and 12, things were just taking off.  And my father was still living and needed assistance.  The Butler sale launched that year as well.  The question didn’t mean much for a long time. 

A few years later, the children were grown and Daddy and his mother and his father, too.  From September 2003 through April 2007, there was a lot of leaving for us.  We also lost a dear friend during that time.  And Hurricane Rita blew through.  We got down to just having our jobs and the cows for the most part.

Eventually, the children married and finally a couple of duchesses came along to add glitter sparkle to our lives. Figuratively and literally! 

Still, there are some long days of not much going on.  I have been retired just past a year. He is still working.  The duchesses are too far to come and go on a regular basis.  I have some hobbies I have dabbled in through the years. I am so accustomed to not having time to really dig deep on them, I still just dabble. 

I am forgetting to dig deep.

I love to plan things.  Have my tidy little lists of things.  I passed that trait on to our son.  I have notebooks of lists.  I have spent my idle hours for thirty years making lists.  What do I list?  I have a list of plants I want for the jungle garden.  I have lists of household supplies I use so I can try to make a more efficient shopping list.  I have lists of my favorite foods.  I have a list of songs I like.  I have a list of books to read and authors whose works I want to read.  I have a list of topics for essays to write.  I spend more time and energy on my lists instead of attending the things on the lists. 

I love to sort things.  An offshoot of listing or the listing is an offshoot of sorting.  I will sort and reorganize my closets and pantries several times through the year.  I haul off stuff to the Salvation Army or bag it up for some of the teen girls at church or a friend I know would love it. I pass through the thrift store and get some more things and then go through the sifting process again.  I thought for a while I was off my rocker. 

When I look around my house, I see the results of the process.  I have several areas that show my love of tropical things.  I have book cases full of a full range of topics.  I have lovely dishes to use every day.  The walls have several original pieces of amateur art.  Some is my even my own work.  I have a modest collection of evening bags of which I plan to start using for everyday as soon as I can get my load of things I think I need to haul around with me pared down to fit.  I hear several of my besties reading this and cackling with laughter over that remark.  And he just rolled his eyes.  One of the things I get called is bag lady.  I still consider it a lofty goal to achieve.  Maybe beyond my scope. Nevertheless…….. 

I am getting better though.  I have been taking the time to read.  And yesterday, I took time to watch one of the movies on my movies to watch list.  I put in a new flower bed this summer.  I have the photos on the table and have begun the sorting process to make a photo album. (This is from the days of film style cameras.)  I have a number of digital photos I want to print and put in the album eventually.  I make time to spend with my friends and my family.  I am terrible at calling to check on folks.  I hate talking on the phone.  I would rather see someone face to face. I text painfully slow.  (I did learn how to talk to text and my phone seems to understand my accent.)  I go with him to check the cows most times. 

Nothing profound.  Just ordinary living. Working on not forgetting the really important things.  Time with him, time with the offspring, time with friends, time with my own creative muse.   Mundane things in a quiet house on a dusty dead end lane in the boondocks of Southeast Texas. 

This Past Week

This past week, I took a “quasi-vacation”. I worked five and a half hours or so and left at noon each day.  The afternoons off were used to take care of some trivial things.  I spent time reorganizing the kitchen cabinets.  I moved some furniture around.  I did some reading and some napping. Why did I take that kind of time off?  I am saving my hours for a trip to Maui.  And, I don’t seem to have the time or energy to manage some things during the evenings and on the weekends.  I accomplished much of what I wanted to achieve.

The weekend found him bow hunting Saturday morning. I don’t bow hunt, yet.  So, I went to visit with my aunt and uncle.  It was good to see them for a short visit.

I had planned to see my nieces. Then, decided it would be too much for them to rearrange plans to meet up with me for an hour.  However, it worked out that I did get to see two of them.  The baby girl gave up some sugars for me.  It was a brief moment.  But, I am glad I got to have it.

I had left my aunt’s and headed for Humble enroute to see my nieces. Shopping on Saturday in Humble is not the kind of thing this old country girl should try to do.  I pulled into the parking lot of the craft store and could not believe the number of cars.  I went into the store and found a couple of on sale items that were still over priced in my opinion.  I looked back over at the lines to the registers and thought about the baby girl I was on the way to see.  Sorry, craft store.  Ladybug moments are far more important!

I skipped the purchase. I am glad I did.  My local dollar store had a few cute items I had seen previously.  Checked back today and got them.  A few more Hallowe’en decorations are out.  I always wanted to do a big scene in the front yard.  Pumpkins, lights, hay bales, mums, scarecrows, black cats, bats and owls.  Like something from the pages of Martha Stewart.  I live at the end of a dead end street with no traffic, no trick or treaters. Only him and myself to see and enjoy.  I seriously doubt he would take much notice.  I will not attempt to do that this year.

This past week I made a lot of choices. What to keep, what to be rid of.  What to spend time doing, what to spend money acquiring.  Who to make time for.  I think I did a pretty fair job of choosing wisely.

So, I will enjoy my simple table decorations and laugh at the cat surrounded by eight giant goldfish. And remember what a certain baby girl feels like snuggled in my arms.  And know in my heart that he appreciates my not going overboard with decorations this year.  And speculate on what my coming week might bring.  More orchids, no doubt.

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