Mother's Day ROCKED this year. It is amazing to watch this little girl of mine grow and develop into an amazing person. Case in point, the painting below.
This is a painting of me. Done by the Bug. Isn't it great? Notice the gold streaks in my hair. And that I am wearing pants, not a skirt like other moms, because I really don't wear skirts. The sun is gorgeous and on the left side, what started out as maybe not exactly what the teacher was looking for, is a beautiful tree with a nest with eggs. Such great creativity.
And I love to see things like this. Even though the reason I am loved may not be the 'Mom of The Year' way of getting ready for school. Oh, in the drawing above, which was a warm up for the painting, I have chicken pox. Blue chicken pox. Awesome.
The Bug's teacher created a beautiful day for us. The kids went into the classroom first and we had to wait out in the hall. They were so excited. Then each one came to get their mom and escort her to her seat at the table. The paintings and other things were waiting for us. Then the kids went to get the punch and cookies and fruit. They felt so grown up taking care of things for us. And they did such a great job.
After breakfast there was a bead station where bracelets and necklaces were made for the moms.
Bug's teacher did such a great job. They had been working on things for a few weeks and the kids weren't supposed to say anything about what was going on. Bug never said a thing. But then again that isn't too surprising. She is so NOT forthcoming about what goes on in school. We have actually developed a game about what she does at school. And it is called Nothing. The answer to every question - what did you do at school? What did you read? What did you have for snack? What did you do on the playground? What songs did you sing? All of it comes up with a big Nothing. Now it is a game, but seriously, she gives up nothing about her day.
I cherish my painting. Not only because my bug did it with love, but because it shows how much she is developing, understanding and noticing the world around her, and because she is creating beauty.
What other somewhat trite thing can I say about some grass starting to grow? Because I have to tell you that this new growth is most decidedly not making me happy. Scroll down to see where this new growth happens to be doing its new growth-ing.
Yep, inside my compost bin. Dang-it! That means it did not get hot enough to kill the seeds of all the crap we put in there. And let me just say, AGAIN. I made a batch last fall and the same thing happened.
This time I decided to get smarter than the rotting matter and I called in an expert. (My mother.) She came over well equipped with her very high-tech tools and we got to it. We incorporated the stuff from last time. It had decomposed quite nicely, but was still growing things. We also put in newly mowed grass, some green waste from the kitchen and lots of dried leaves. The perfect cocktail. And it did get hot. We got over 130 for maybe 3-4 days. But obviously not long enough, and maybe not hot enough, to kill the seeds.
What is a girl to do? Seriously. I don't want to spread this stuff around as I already have a losing battle with the weeds as it is. I don't need to intentionally add more. ACK.
I know this is not critical to most. I realize this may be a minor issue in the big scale of things. But seriously, old medicine bottles are like rabbits in this house and they seem to be multiplying. I really want to recycle them but for some reason I feel like just putting them in the recycle bin is not enough. They need a new life, a new purpose, a rebirth of sorts. So here are some ideas.
I got this from my mom. When she sees my nephew she hands him over one of these babies filled with quarters that he can use for games. Do they even have arcades any more? I know a few pizza places have games and that is usually where he uses them up. I keep one in my car for parking meters and it moves to my purse when I travel. Very handy.
The bug loves glitter. And I have to say I am quite fond of the sparkly stuff as well. This container is a combination of all the different colors we use. It is the extra that gets knocked off when one is glittering. It invariably gets mixed up with other colors in the middle of a project and I don't want to taint the pure glitter color with some funky mixed color by trying to put the extra back, so it all goes into here.
This is one of those mega bottles and it holds some needles, a spool of thread and my cool cutter that I can take on the plane. I use it for yarn as well and thread. It is a circle with some recesses that have a blade so that you can cut your thread without cutting anything, or anyone, else. I have to get a shot of it to show you. Often I will just use a regular bottle with a bobbin of thread and a needle or two, sans cutter. But it is a handy way to carry these tools. You can throw it in your purse and you know you won't end up with some stray needle or pin poking at you from the depths of your bag.
Throwing out old needles scares the poop out of me. I mean seriously, how are you supposed to package up that vicious little thing so that you don't hurt yourself or someone else. So I don't. I just pop them in here. When it is full the whole thing will go in the trash. Ta da!
This is probably the most common use for old medicine bottles. And old baby food jars as well. And it works well so I am sticking with it. Especially if you have little elements like this for a certain project, or area of your house. You can identify them so much easier in one of these little things.
small screws and nails
I was working on a large quilt and pre-wound a bunch of bobbins. I needed a place to keep them all together so they wouldn't unwind and this was perfect. I think 6 fit in one of the standard size bottles.
Let's see, what else?
Matches to keep waterproof when camping.
Money and a key to take to the beach or some other outing.
Office supplies like paper clips, although why I am not sure. But you could.
I also used this kind of container to hold the watered down glue we used at Easter to make glitter eggs.
I tried lipstick or chapstick for the beach but they were too long for the bottle. And I really wanted crayons to fit so I could carry them easily for the bug. But again, just a bit too long for the bottles I have. So I'll keep looking and I'll let you know what else I find.
I truly hope you don't have any of these in your house. That would mean you don't need any medications. But if you find that you do have a few lingering, put them to work.
Usually if I
want to get things done on a big scale I create a Compelling Event. I used to
just explain it that I would throw a party but a friend shared the phrase
Compelling Event with me and I just love it. So that is my new go-to. Here are some examples:
When I moved into
my old house I told my girlfriend that we would have her birthday party in
combination with my house warming party. She loved that idea because she didn't
want it all about her. (I just don't get that. Birthdays really are just all
about you. As it should be. Celebrate you, girl.) It gave me about two months
to repaint most rooms, get everything unpacked and put away and start in on the
decorating. I admit that in two rooms I just said the hell with it and they
were bleh by party date. But I was really excited about the rest of the house
and ready to show it off. Gotta have a deadline.
We were having a few family parties at our house last summer and before each one I renewed my siege on The Hill. (I really have to explain this whole hill thing.) So a week or two before each event quite a lot of work was completed. Anyone else need a deadline to actually get things done?
compelling event is that we are having company this weekend. And I am very
excited. We love these people. I love these people. This is actually one of the
man's friends from college and his wife and daughter. When I met them (before
daughter) wifey and I hit it off immediately. I love that. We have our own
separate friendship other than just the wives of good friends. And that is
awesome. I love her dearly. But to be honest I should be extra motivated to get
my house in order for their visit. Wifey is amazing in her energy, motivation,
togetherness and admittedly perfectionist tendencies. Her house is always
together and usually spotless. Everything has a place and it is in its place,
in perfect order. Really.
Let me tell you a story. When we moved into our current house
I was 5 months pregnant. We got a lot of help. It was overwhelming. It really
was. Wifey and husband came down from LA for the day. Seriously. They drove 2
hours to help us move. I mean really, do you have friends like that. I feel so
blessed. Anyway, once everything was unloaded and in the house she looked at me
and said, "Can I do your linen closet?" And she was serious. She was
in her element and loving it. Every towel and sheet was expertly folded and
organized and put in exactly the right spot. It was amazing. And beautiful. Not
just for a linen closet, but just plain beautiful. Martha would have wept with envy. And now, not so much. Not even close. Ack. I even have a few
blankets (neatly folded) sitting on the floor beside my linen closet because I
can't quite fit them in. It is on my list but who knows.
So my current compelling event is their visit this weekend. And it
is working. Bathrooms are done. Weird things in the kitchen are done. I have polished
the toaster, the trash cans, the microwave and dishwasher, wiped down all the cabinet doors, cleaned the
vent hood so far. I don't know why I chose those particular things but I think it helps to make everything look better. I have a theory that if the shiny things are shiny then most everything else is overlooked. So for me that is mirror, sink and faucet in the bathrooms. (And sometimes only the faucet.) And all the random shiny things in the kitchen (See above.) I also have this theory that if your kitchen is really clean than it kind of carries the rest of the house. Because if you think about the reverse, if you have a completely spotless house but a dirty (not just messy) kitchen it still kind of grosses me out.
Now for another perspective, the man is all about floors and specifically vacuuming. If he has vacuumed than to him the house is clean. He does not see the piles of crap on every horizontal service begging to be put away, or the dishes in the sink, or the mess on the stovetop. His shiny thing is a vacuumed floor.
Oh where, oh where, has my motivation gone? Oh where, oh where can it be? Sing along with me here.
Seriously. I have no motivation. And it is so frustrating. Because I love being motivated. I get in a groove where I just GET THINGS DONE. And it feels great. But lately: nada, zilch, zippo. And that is not good. Because that leads to all the negative talk and the settling in of the shoulda, woulda, coulda's. Hate those guys. But they are most definitely hanging around. I currently do the bare minimum to keep the house functioning but it really isn't where I want it to be. I think it probably has something to do with being off the medication. Maybe. Or maybe that is just my 'excuse du jour'.
So I have been making lists. I like lists now because this is how I approach them: 'These are things I want to get done.' Not the big bad 'HAVE TO DO' list, the one that makes you feel bad. And not the one that puts you into such negative place that you are paralyzed. But rather the 'I am going to love getting these things finished and I will feel so good crossing it off' kind of list. These are lists I like. I will even put down the last few things I actually did finish so that I can start with a few things crossed off. Nothing like a pat on the back right from the start.
And I leave my little pile of lists on the kitchen table or entry way. This keeps it easily accessible to me for updating and crossing off, reminds me of something else I could get done, and just in case the man feels motivated he can see what needs to be done.
(Aside - is it not amazing the capacity that a man has for NOT seeing things? What is that? Do they really not see, or is it just that they assume someone else will take care of it. I don't get it.)
Ironically the Man is a bit more motivated these days. He is on some new meds that he thinks is helping. And I realize that maybe I shouldn't be spilling the beans about his HIPAA stuff but since he doesn't even read this blog he won't know. Unless one of you go blabbing it. So please don't.
(Another aside - one thing that really does not go over well is when you look at one of your lists and something has been added to it. Not in your hand writing mind you. WTF. I'm just saying.)
Some more things that make my lists work for me:
I list small items, not big ones. I've made the mistake in the past of putting Laundry on my list. Well, dang, that never gets all the way done. So now I will say whites through laundry or all blankets and towels through laundry. That is much easier to cross off.
I will some times put very obvious, immediate things (empty dishwasher) as well as more random things (clean grout in guest bath) on the same list. Go for the easy, gotta do them anyway things and cross it off. Then the only things left are the more demanding ones but somehow they are easier because you have all this crossed off stuff to admire.
I create multiple lists for different areas. Right now I have an inside list, an outside list and a kind of errand list. And I am not sure why it is not overwhelming me to have more than one. I guess if it were all on one list it would be way too big. So breaking it down makes it more palatable. And achievable.
I do not live or die by my lists. Really. Don't forget that these are just the things I'd really like to get done.
If I lose a list, oh well.
If I get overwhelmed by a list then I make easier things on the next one so that I can get some crossing off going. That is the goal, lots of crossing off.
Okay, getting back on the blog is now crossed off my list. Atta girl!