Halfway

Well, my big “I’m gonna blog more!” plan for my sabbatical has fallen by the wayside because it’s been a month and a half between posts and I’m halfway done with my sabbatical. Whoops.

Looking at my rough list of “to-dos” from my last post, I have gotten some things done:

Major tree and shrub removal:Β This one happened the very first day of my sabbatical and I wrote about it in my last post.

Replacing the last two sets of windows on the house: They look amazing! Was a much smoother and clean process than I was anticipating – kudos to the Pella Window crew! If I were more organized, I would have taken before and after photos. Whoops.

Constructing a garden shed: Well, we have the shed, obviously, but it’s been sitting in it’s boxes in the garage since I bought it. The plan is to have the location prepped before the 4th of July week (dug out, leveled, sand and pea rock laid down). Why that week? My sister is planning on coming up for a few days that week and she’s willing to help me put it up (weather permitting, more on that below).

Painting: HAH. Absolutely zero of that happened. 😦

Having my mom stay with me for a week:Β I went down to the farm on Mother’s Day and brought Mom back to my house. We had a great time – went shopping, talked a lot, and she spent a ton of time looking out the back windows on the yard and pond watching all the wildlife. Also, I watched more local news and Wheel of Fortune than I have in decades. πŸ˜€

Landscaping: I’ve been working on clearing out all the landscaping rock in the garden bed next to the garage SINCE MOTHER’S DAY. Why is it taking so long? Because to get the rock out, the ground has to be dry – so about two days after the last rain is ideal. Problem is there’s been only two or three days where those conditions have happened – otherwise it rains every other day, or in the case of the past week, it’s rained EVERY DAY. ARGH!

Once the rock is out, there’s a stump we need to dig out, but the soil can be damp when we tackle that, so it’s not as crucial to be dry for two days in a row. Then I’ll plant my hydrangeas and get some new edging and mulch down then that project will be DONE.

Electrical work: Still haven’t done this one.

Designing Tim’s studio space: Well, we had the plan, but then he was focusing on his illustration and comics work full-time for a month or so and in the interests of saving money, we put this project on pause. Plus, he has a desk at a local studio with other comic artists, so he’s been spending a lot of time there working so having a better space here wasn’t a necessity.

Dialing in my nutrition/exercise plan:Β HAH.

I’ll clarify: HAHAHAHAH.

In all seriousness, I’ve been doing really well at CrossFit. I did my first (half) Murph on Memorial Day in the 90+ degree heat and did a lot better than I expected. I’ve also been setting some PRs on my weight lifting (bench press, front squat, back squat, etc.) and now that summer is here, we’re doing more running, which has been great even though I’m the slowest one there.

Nutrition-wise, I haven’t done anything. I’m in a funk and my motivation and drive to make meaningful changes is at zero right now. Which results in me wrapping myself in a warm blanket of comfort foods and making bad choices. It’s times like this where I wish I had that friend that I could talk to when things are low. But, after being rejected by the last friend I trusted with my troubles, I don’t bother anyone with my business anymore. Which is fine – all you can really rely on is yourself, right? And I know what some of you are thinking: “get a therapist” – I’d censor myself there too because I don’t feel comfortable talking to a virtual stranger about those things. I’m sure it works for other people, but in my experience it wouldn’t help. Maybe I should get one of those old-fashioned paper journals where I can sort out my thoughts.Β πŸ€”

ANYHOO.

Back to the nutrition thing: I’m going to try and make small, incremental changes to my eating and drinking habits and hope that this gradual change is the key to success. Especially since the “RAWR NO EXCUSES” method that I’ve tried in the past fails miserably.

Still haven’t made any plans for a weekend trip, so that part probably won’t happen – but who knows.

Now if it would just stop raining!

Timing.

Been a rough couple of months! Moving prep. The actual move. After the move. I’m not moving again for a VERY long time.

(I say this, and watch us move in a year)

April turned out to be quite the stressful month. Well, March wasn’t much better. Living apart from your spouse SUCKS.

I had some fun times, though. In April, my team had our meetup in Dublin, Ireland and I spoke at WordCamp San Diego. Here are a few photos of Dublin – not sure why I didn’t take any photos in San Diego!

Then the moving. Oh boy that was fun. And by fun, I mean a nightmare. The three day trip took four due to a really shitty Penske truck. Here are the “highlights”:

Day one.: Portland OR to Coeur d’Alene ID. Husband and I in our car with the cats, my sister driving the Penske truck. Nothing too exciting aside from Pixel having an accident in her kennel. A bit slow going with the truck because it wouldn’t go over 60mph.

Day two.: Coeur d’Alene ID to Miles City MO. After climbing over the mountains in Idaho, in a area of flat terrain, the check engine light in the Penske truck came on. Spent an hour in a gas station parking lot on the phone troubleshooting the issue. Once we got back on the road, it was decided that I needed to drive ahead (and going the speed limit of 80mph) to our already-booked hotel in Miles City so the cats wouldn’t be in the car so long again. I got there around 10pm (after driving through one of the worst rain storms in a long time). The truck with my husband and sister rolled in around 12:30am.

Day three.: Miles City MO to Minneapolis MN. Well, that was the plan anyway. When we were all packed up and ready to depart, the truck wouldn’t start. GREAT.

Waited around for about an hour while the local diesel mechanic got things running again. Headed out later than normal, but since we’d be getting to our new house, I didn’t care how late it would be. Until we stopped to fuel up. When we got back on the road again the truck going up any sort of incline would slow down to a crawl of 35mph. On the interstate. To say this was dangerous was an understatement.

We pulled off in the middle of nowhere North Dakota and called Penske again. Said we should make our way to Bismarck where there was an International garage where they could take a look at it. We made it there around 5pm and thus we spent the night in Bismarck instead of our new house. 😦

Day four?: Bismarck ND to Minneapolis MN. Started off the day with a truck with a freshly flushed out fuel system (which was a lot of the problem) and our optimism of a day with no drama or surprises.

Wrong.

Going down the road for an hour, we needed to fuel up again, get some coffee/water, and take bathroom breaks. Back on the road, the truck started doing the EXACT. SAME. THING.

Pulled off again in a different middle of nowhere North Dakota and called Penske. Again. After troubleshooting, they had two options: they can send a new truck and movers to unpack/pack our stuff into a new truck, or they could just tow us to Minneapolis if we could make it to Jamestown ND. Since we had amazing movers pack our stuff up in Oregon and it would be faster to be towed, we opted for the tow.

We got to Jamestown where we met up with the tow truck driver. He was going to tow us to Fargo ND where we’d swap tow trucks with a second driver – something about crossing state lines or something – and the second driver would tow us the rest of the way. It worked shockingly well. In fact, the tow truck went 75-80MPH the rest of the trip. Fastest that stupid Penske truck went the entire trip. 😐

More photos of the move:

We’re mostly unpacked – I still have all my artwork that I need to hang up and a few other little things to organize, but for the most part we’re all settled in! Since this is turning out to be a photo-heavy post, here’s some more photos:

Next in my crazy life: going back to CrossFit. That’s for another post, though.

I Suck At Relaxing

I’ve been on vacation since Friday night.

It’s Sunday night and I want to die from boredom.

It’s not that I don’t have things I could be doing. Lawd knows I have no end of video games I want to play.

videogames

There’s TV shows I want to catch up with. Movies I want to watch. Places around here I want to explore!

Instead, I’ve been surfing the internet being bored off my ass.

I even baked cookies.

O_o

YOU GUYS. I don’t like baking. Mainly because then I have to deal with the baked goods being in my house. Moose loves baked goods.

I also may or may not have had three of those cookies for lunch today.

(Spoilers: I did.)

I literally just took a shower for “something to do” to waste time until I could cook dinner.

I AM THE MOST BORING PERSON ON EARTH.

As I referred to in my last post, I’m trying to completely be disconnected from work. The lure of work was really strong today.

“I know! I can read work stuff – that will fill this emptiness I’m feeling.”

I stopped myself before I did that. However, it did make me realize my problem: I can’t remember the last time I took a vacation where I didn’t have some sort of “project” to work on (in no particular order):

  • Moving.
  • Preparing to move.
  • Unpacking from the move.
  • Painting rooms in my house.
  • Garage construction projects.
  • Major spring cleaning.
  • Prepping vegetable gardens for the growing season.
  • Fall gardening prep for winter.
  • I lost interest in this list because: OMG BORING.

Note, that obviously doesn’t include vacations where I actually went somewhere other than my own house. But for most of my adult life, I didn’t travel anywhere. Mainly because I never felt financially secure enough to do so. Thus, my “vacations” turned into “getting shit done” marathon sessions.

Now I live in an apartment. One that we just moved into a few short months ago.

The great cleaning/purging of stuff happened well before we left Minnesota. Can’t do that.

We decided to not paint walls in the apartment. Once I got my concert prints and paintings hung, I don’t feel like anything is lacking in here design-wise. Since I love how it looks, it’s not something in my mind that’s pressing to do.

I have a pile of clutter in my office, but that’s mainly stuff we just need to haul back to our storage locker in the building. But that will take less than a half hour, start-to-finish, to complete.

I’m off for two weeks.

I really should take notes from the cats. They certainly don’t have any problems relaxing.

Let's be honest. It's an excuse to post a photo of Pixel.
Let’s be honest. It’s an excuse to post a photo of Pixel.

In my pre-shower moping, I wandered into my husband’s office and I laid on the floor and groaned. When he asked me what was wrong, I said “I’m BOOOOOOORED.” like I was a whiny five-year-old

After rattling off a number of suggestions of things I could do – to which I would reply with a grunt – he said the following that took nearly an hour to worm around in my brain and come up with a result.

What would you do if you had the time to do it?

That sonofabitch. Being all smart and stuff. Harumph.

While I took my boredom shower, I noodled it around. Then I chuckled to myself thinking “I should blog about how much I suck at relaxing!” Then it hit me.

“I should blog.”

That’s the one thing I never seem to have time to do.

Back when I worked at one of my many jobs as an administrative assistant, I had streamlined and automated my workflows for my job so much that I could hammer out all my duties for the day (unless it was the end of the month) in a few hours. I spent the rest of time reading the hundreds of RSS feeds, random internet pages, and blogging on my own site. I used to blog just about every day, and now I get a few posts out a month between this site and my other site (see sidebar for those posts).

Pathetic.

I work for WordPress and can’t find time to use it? Ridiculous.

What I’m going to try to do while I’m on vacation is to write on my sites. Will there be any actual informative things posted? Maybe? But deep down, I’m a narrative writer – I write what’s happening to me at any given time. A snapshot of my life, as it were, so don’t expect great things. But, they will be fun to read. πŸ™‚

I am going to clean my office up and do a little organizing, but for the most part, I’m going to try to write. I’d love to do a post every day, but I’m not going to kill myself to find a topic worthwhile enough to write about. Unless you want me to start posting pictures of my cats every day.

Nobody wants that.

Look at it this way: my boredom means you’ll have more nonsense to read. It’s like Christmas came early! πŸ˜€

More to come…