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'hole digging' therapy

Monday, April 26, 2010
I spent several hours today digging holes and planting things that have been sitting around in pots, desperately wanting to be put in the ground. Some were 'rescues' as they were headed toward certain death in the dumpster at Publix, and others I actually paid money for.

The Publix foster children were hydrangeas that had gone limp, or been clipped off to have their blooms go into a big wedding order M. did over the weekend (kinda cut the wholesale order a wee bit close, huh?) and some bulbs that were well past their prime for quality sales. I've been delighted with hyacinths re-blooming after having been greenhouse forced for commercial sales, but tulips and daffodils don't perform nearly as well after having normal growing pattern altered.

I had some astilbe I bought at a plant sale a week or so ago, and was anxious to get planted. I'm really pleased with the are beginning to flower, and looking forward to seeing how they will do, in a densely shaded spot behind the house. The blooms look creamy white, but I thought I was/meant to be buying pink: we shall see. The first time I saw it blooming in NC, tall spikey stalks topped with creamy and blushing pink blooms, I thought: that's for me, and have wanted to plant some for years. So I am hoping it will do well, grow, multiply and make more!

And finally (after leaving them in a plastic trash bag for nearly a month, I ashamedly admit, when I dug them up in Quitman several weeks ago) got the agapanthus in the ground. I had no idea how to plant, but think they are so hardy they won't care, and will do well despite abusive parenting. I put them out in the side yard, near some artemisia that I neglected for months before finally planting earlier in the year, after having left it sitting in pots over the coldest winter in memory.

I still have not done the digging to get tomatoes planted, but other things growing in the garden are looking good. The miracle 'Jack-in-the-beanstalk' beans are just beginning to curl tendrils up around the wire, starting to do pull-ups headed toward the clouds, and allium are thinking about blooming. I hope the English peas will produce enough for me to pick, and carrots have finally started showing frilly, lace-y tops, so maybe we will have bunny food too.

While I was dragging the hose to water the hydrangeas, I laughed out loud: when I thought of how kids start pre-school, and every week the teacher will focus on things that start with a particular letter of the alphabet. So this week, I guess I am severly regressing, as it appears everything begins with the letter 'A'. I also noted that nearly everything blooming thing I've put out in recent weeks is: blue! After constantly telling customers at work we don't hardly never ever get in anything in cut flowers that is blue...

feels like retail 'holiday fun''

Saturday, April 17, 2010
One of the floral people at another Publix was out sick, and had some business that had to be done today for highschoolers' prom orders. This other store manager called the store where I work trying to 'farm out' the corsage and boutennier work, but my co-worker was swamped with stuff he had already agreed to do, so called to offer me a job as a sub-contractor for one day. I went to the Macon Road store at about 8:30 this morning, thinking I would be done well before noon, and on my own, free to plant things I bought yesterday. But it was what PSI would call a 'hot mess' in that floral dept., and I spent my entire day: till 6:30 trying to get things in order, cleaned up, throwing away a frightening amount of unsellable old merchandise. 'Way too long on my poor tired footses all day: especially when I kept thinking about all the stuff I wanted to be doing instead!

I did not mean to devote my day to that, as I had big plans to come home and spend the afternoon digging holes for all the stuff I bought at the plant sale yesterday. I have grands landscaping schemes, but will be doing some 'sub-contracting' of my own, as I am pretty sure my ache-y back will not tolerate digging, stooping, hauling, lifting that I have in mind for creating bright cheery 'frou-frou' that will make the front of the house have eye-appeal.

Things are progressing inside: I am thankful for peace and quiet of a weekend, but will be even more thankful when it's done and I can cease the boxing, unboxing, re-boxing and recycling boxes. I have been putting things back in pantry and cupboards, and do a little jig each time I empty a box, then remember: everything in the bathrooms, and that monumental mess in the storage/shop will need boxing and moving to paint. The yard sale at the church occured in a very fortituous timely manner, but I'm not through with the paring, deleting and downsizing. I foolishly frivilously hope the church youth group will want to do it again next weekend with all the stuff I could not sneak out of the house in recent days. Most of which comes under the heading of "If you haven't used 'it' in ten years, it's probably safe to say you can part with 'it' "... even though whatever the 'it' is: could easily be considered a collectible, family treasure, or too valuable to just donate.

I'm loving the lighter walls and cabinet facings inthe kitchen, and excited about new floors and a re-do in the bathroom. When he asks: how will we ever get all this mess cleaned up (the 'we' part meaning ME!) I am thinking: the same way you eat an elephant?

the painter is back

Wednesday, April 14, 2010
EVERYthing is out of the cuboards and the pantry in the kitchen. I am now wondering who has been bringing stuff into my house.

I was so ready to feel like I was making progress (having heard from a very reliable source that 'it will get worse before it gets better!), I told them when I finally found enough boxes to put all that stuff into, they needed to go to the paint store and bring me a bucket of: Any color. So I could help things along, and start painting all the shelving, drawer and cabinet insides, thinking that the sooner we start painting, the sooner it will dry and I can begin to put things back and regain control.

We are making progress.

temporarily: 'living in chaos'

Saturday, April 10, 2010
I mistook my efforts at boxing, packing, deleting, diminishing, discarding as effective: but when I left home for a couple of days, the guys came to start re-doing the entire interior of our house while I was gone. Mess was not unexpected, but I somehow was unprepared for the way I feel when it appears 'everything got stirred with a stick'. It is reminiscent of what a child would do to a mudpuddle or anthill, just to see the resulting swirling, troubled waters or bedlam of insects in random retreat.

I've discovered I have a pitifully low tolerance for the State of Confusion we are currently residing in. I even told the guys when I came in on Thursday night to find all the doors off the kitchen cupboards and EVERYthing exposed: I feel like I got caught with my pants down. There are so many boxes of stuff awaiting a truck to be hauled away for the yard sale at church, you can't walk through the doorway into the kitchen from the front door. And more empty boxes came in from Publix today to load and disperse... but I continue to be horry-fied at the amount of flotsam and jetsam we have allowed to accumulate in our lives.

All the furniture in the living-dining area is clumped up in the middle of the room, like wagons circled out on the plains, defending the innocents from attack. The guys will be back next week: to start the actual work of painting ceilings and walls before replacing floor. And completely re-doing a bathroom, so I will be emptying closets, cupboards and pantry. And moving enough junk to fill a dumpster out of the workshop to paint in there.

My current mantra is based on reminding myself what the 'experts' say about how you should go through your closet once a year and dispose of what you don't use/wear, while knowing some of our stuff, junk, jetsam has been collecting dust and rust for a quarter of a century or more. We have been in this house since late 1981: wow!

I've been telling myself Everything in the house has to be moved: either for painting or floor. But right now, I'm feeling pretty overwhelmed: probably because everything is so 'exposed'. With boxes stacked all over, and more boxes to fill. Where did my orderly little life go? Where did all this stuff come from?

I know this 'bedlam' part won't last forever, and look forward to living in a fresh new house, with neatly painted interior, new tile floors in kitchen and bath, hardwood in living area. And especially Much Less Stuff when all the superfulous is given, donated, hauled away. The running commentary here is "we will like it so much, we will want to stay!"

A Fortituous Beginning!! on April Fool's Day?

Thursday, April 1, 2010
I hope starting a new job on April One is not a 'bad omen'. As one who does not believe in 'luck' or 'fate', I don't expect there will be any problems for my girl as she makes a major change. She has a level of confidence about her capabilities and positive outlook to ensure she will experience continuing success.

I will admit I am amongst those who have enjoyed a mildly amusing April First prank or two within the confines of my home and family... that will go unexplained here.

For the readers of these musings, today is the day you and I have diligently prayed for: P. is starting her new employment. I hope you were among the recepients of the 'Thanks to the Prayer Warriors' e-mail several weeks ago, after she completed the interview process and was made the offer by the Girl Scouts. She will be working out of the office there, covering one-quarter of the 'pie', as one of four Membership Managers for that area.

When she turned in her notice at HL, she found herself with a week of being (what we at our house have found so much pleasure from describing as): cheerfully unemployed.

Today is the First Day of the Rest of Her Life. I know that she is both excited and anxious about what will happen in the coming weeks as she begins to get her feet wet in this new endeavor. Please continue to keep her in your thoughts and prayers. Along with great optimism I am sure there will be anxiety about performance: matching names with faces, learning the ropes of something so completely different, yet so very similar to the 'Service' aspect of what her personable self was so good at doing with the customers at HL.

She is a young adult who has been blessed with a 'servant's heart', seeking ways that she could demonstrate her desires to be a blessing to others within her circle of influence. As she starts this new work, that circle will surely widen, and create opportunities for even greater impact on the girls and families she encounters, as well as co-workers and others in the community. What a marvelous opportunity!