Friday, June 7, 2019

Magical Garden Shed

This is where I tell y'all how I was once a young girl with an eccentric aunt who grew bonsai trees and sold them on the side of the road. And how she once wrote in an interior design book that one day I'd build a magical space where the fairies would dance under the full moon. 
But I won't, because too much of that is true and it's kinda of creepy. We're going to move on to a bunch of photos and stuff instead.

 Before photos are a must. 

I had originally thought to make a fire pit circle...
... but only grew weeds and the wildlife had concerns I wasn't 
doing my part to make their space beautiful.
I spent a few days trying to figure out the size and ended up marking it 
the same as the 3 raised beds we'd already made. (12' X 6' )

Playing with building materials we already had. 
Old deck steps and shutters. Water barrels at the ready. 

 Free wood comes at a cost.  ;)

 I can't emphasis enough that we had no idea what we were doing. 
Tommy would ask, "Where do you want this?" and I'd make him hold it up and step back.
Then we just pieced boards together.

 When we needed a 1" board to fill spaces, I would lay boards flat, making narrow shelves.
And Tommy twitched. When we needed filler wood, I'd break a board in half and he'd twitch.
Twenty five years with me, you'd think he'd be used to my crazy ideas.

 ... but he trusts my vision. :)

 She's been up a few months now and survived a hail storm, and several sever storms that included 60mph straight line winds.

I think it's time she got a name. 
Any suggestions?

Friday, September 22, 2017

Be Weird

I was labeled as hyper active in the early 80's. I wasn't allowed sugar and told to play more to calm me down.
Candy was such a treat that I can still remember the few times I was allowed to have it.
I also remember the teacher who saw my constant movement as a sign of an active mind and not a problem to be fixed.
She worked with me and instead of holding me back, she pushed me harder.

I see a lot of those behaviors, that are now deemed disorders, with my kids. And all I can think is, "Look at that. My kids are acting like kids."
And though sometimes the animal noises, fighting and resistance to chores are annoying  they aren't worth sedating. But who they are is worth celebrating.

I've a kid who should be studying more, but chooses to draw for HOURS. And yes, sometimes it's creepy stuff, but my word she can make hollow eye sockets look cool. So I encourage her.
My son, he needs a task and sometimes I prescribe the trampoline. "Dude, go jump and get the energy out." And he does. When he walks back in the house he takes a deep breath, "Okay mom, I feel better." And back to playing he goes.
And the littlest, she's headed towards a life in theater. She requires your full attention. And it's not forever, but a few minutes of eye to eye, and she's set for hours.

This morning I talked to my oldest and we discussed her sudden need to isolate herself. We talked about expectations of others and how it can hold you back. And then we talked about breaking those chains and leaving the things that hold us back.

"I know from personal experience what it's like to have adults tell you to stop doing what you love. And what it's like to have peers call you weird and obnoxious. And I also know that those same people are still miserable humans... and I'm not. So be weird. And know that the moment you conform I'll ground you until you remember who you are."

7/13/2016 (FB post)

Previous Generations Don't Own "Good"

When I stopped thinking about the 'good old day' as the only way, I was free to enjoy today and get excited about tomorrow.

This might be one of the most important things I've learned as a parent. My kids don't need to experience what I did. I'm not raising clones of myself.

Their unique experiences in a world that looks different than the one I grew up in doesn't mean their life will be bad.
Previous generations don't own 'good'.
Heck, many in previous generations saw only the bad.

So no, I won't respond to patronizing posts about how older generations were better. And I certainly won't pity my kids and their friends because they didn't experience <insert any cliché childhood experience>.

My job as a parent is to help them grow into responsible and respectful adults. Telling them they can't do either because this world is so bad is simply untrue.

If you think this world is doomed, then you've already quit life.

This house... we've still  got a lot of living to do.

8/15/2016 (FB post)

Tuesday, September 19, 2017

I'm a social media addict.

Wake up, check notification.
Grab coffee, post update.
Finish breakfast, see who responded.  
Wash dishes, reply.
Take kids to school, check notifications.
Do laundry, post update.
Sweep floors, see who responded.
Water plants, reply.
... all before 9:00am.

Hi, my name's Christine and I'm a social media addict.
The functioning kind.

The house still gets cleaned, the laundry washed and put away. 
The garden is tended to. 
The kid's homework completed. 
Visiting with friends and family is done on the regular. 
I make time for meditation, reading and occasionally writing. 
I'm not nose to the phone all day. 
Especially when around others: I will text my kids, but beyond that I can set it down and fully focus on those around me.
But I have a lot of free time alone.
That's when the near compulsion takes place.

It started as a way to stay connected with others while raising three small children. 
But that's not what happened. 
While trying to connect with others, I somehow disconnected with myself. 
It was a slow process. 
But I felt it years ago and left it unchecked. 

This year, I started changing that. 
Closing accounts like Twitter, FB Pages, Snapchat and Tumblr. 
The lesser of the social medias. 
But today was day one without FB.
I'm not sure where it's going, what the goal is or even where I want to be.
But I do know where I'm currently at, isn't it.
So I'm starting here, 6,000 less voices in my head.

Day 1: I put pen to paper in an old journal. 
I wrote my name...

Saturday, May 28, 2016

Garden Cruise... WHAT!?!

It's been so long since I've written that I've neglected to mention I'm a Texas Master Gardener.
Yep, I can now request others to call me Master.
Ha! As if that's going to happen.
But hey, there's perks. Like conferences on cruise ships.
Gardening on the ocean?
Yep, I'll be attending 8 hours of continuing education while heading to Cozumel.
Sweet deal!
I even convinced the husband to go.
I know, arm twisting was tough. ;)
He's interested in a few of the classes too, like Beverages from the Garden and the Wine and Viticulture classes. 

If you've been reading this dusty old blog, then you might remember I did a whole 30 that turned to 90 days of clean eating. 
In the process I lost 35lbs.
That was nearly 2-years ago. 

WOW! Time flies when you're old.

Anyway, in those 2 years since I've allowed some things to creep back in to my diet. Namely sugar and bread. Granted, not like before, but it's still there. And because of it, I've put 15lbs back on. 
I try to stay positive, because HEY, at least I've kept 20lbs off... right? 
Yep, BUT I still had so far to go. 

Okay, enough of that. 

Gardening + Cruise = Weight Loss
Y'all can see how that all goes hand in hand now, right? Of course you do!

So the countdown has been made, spreadsheets started and Pinterest boards are filling up. 
You don't work 12-years in research and not pick up a few habits.

So once the deposit was made, passports were sorted and the list of excursions and on board packages were researched and logged I started to look at the countdown chart and realized;

"OMG I have to wear a frakin' bathing suit. WTH did I just sign up for?!"

After the initial shock, cold sweats and hyperventilation was done, I started mathing. ;)

I've 334 days, 47.5 weeks and I'd like to weigh what my License to Carry has me listed as. 
Um, yeah, it's not been updated since I first qualified.

That was 21 years ago, a 12-year sedentary office job, 4 moves, and 3 kids ago.
Talk about denial! 

So I'm writing it down. 
I'm blogging again.
I'm watching EVERYTHING that I eat.
And I plan on working out

No! Really, I am. I even did a quick workout today even though I'm fighting the last bit of school cooties the kids brought home.

Oh and that, it's officially Summer Break for the kids. I'm not really sure it that's going to make this process easier or harder, I guess that really just depends on me.
Gah, adulting sucks!

So, my plan for this blog?
Mostly to track my progress.
What else? Not really sure yet.
I'll just play it by ear. 

I've already done the food photo blogs.
Did the recipe thing.
And made motivational tools.

I know I'll be updating the food and work out boards on Pinterest.
With the PC now in my bedroom and the kids taking over the house, it's easier to work out in here and lock the door. Because seriously, yoga and kids... NO! 

AND... weights. It's time. Sure, I still have permanent joint damage thanks to sports and unsupervised weight lifting. But whatever. I'm not bitter. ;)

I should maybe add one of those widget for weight loss. Surely they're all over the place. I already have the cruise countdown. What's one more thing in the sidebar?

So this is officially day 1. 
I've 333 to go. 
To my friends, please don't make cookies for the next 47.5 weeks!  

Sunday, May 22, 2016

Victory was Certain

I dragged their lifeless bodies across the newly leveled fields. Each one inadvertently picking up pieces from those who'd fallen before them. These two were the last. The giants among the masses. They stood tall and proud, certain nothing could harm them.
But they forgot who their master was. They took on a role they had not earned and in doing so led many others astray. Like a mutinous crew seeing only the port before them and not the ocean and its treasures beyond.
It was my job to bring things back to order. It was a task I loathed but knew had to be executed. If not I'd have been overrun and all my years of work would have been for nothing.
And so I did what had to be done.
With blades sharpened and nothing more than a thin protective shield to guard me against their allies, I went forth. 

Within minutes of entering their territories, their colleagues met me. Alien in appearance, they were fast and adaptable. I knew some would make it through my shield. They are a plague on society. So their death brought me great pleasure.

As I got closer I was greeted by their children. So small and fragile, easily plucked from the earth and tossed to the side. This... this I did not enjoy. Though I knew my enemies had to be thoroughly annihilated, it brought me no pleasure to end the next generation.
I moved forwards.

Getting closer to my goal I was forced to run the gauntlet. So many of my friends turned foe, each one grabbing at me, cutting me, leaving behind bloody reminders of relationships that had spoiled from neglect. So much of it was my fault, which hurt the most.
But they fell, all of them. One by one. My blades cut through them. Yet it was no easy task. Each one bigger and stronger. My hands, my arms, my shoulders and back, they all hurt, but I could not, WOULD NOT quit.

And then I was there, standing before the last two holdouts. The giants. Taking them down would be no easy task. But necessary if I was to succeed.
But I was tired.
So many battles had already been fought and all I wanted to do was rest. However, I knew if I stopped at this point, chances are I’d never go back.
And so I pushed forward. Grabbing a larger blade, not sure if I could take them down. But not showing fear either.
They both fought long and hard. The cuts and bruises I'd sustained earlier were nothing compared to the ones they left me. They were strong, solid, unmoving. Unlike the ones before who bent easily to my will. These put up a mighty fight.
But I could not lose and so I pressed forward to victory.

Tossing their lifeless bodies into a mass grave, piled high with my enemies, who were once friends. Tears mingled with sweat as I watched the cart pull away. I wondered if I'd been a better master, maybe none of this would have happened. Perhaps I could have tried harder to work with them. But it didn't matter now. I had a plan and they refused to work with me.

Under a warm flow of water, I reflected on the day's victory. Washing away dirt and debris, I hoped to never have to fight my friends and their allies again. But I am certain that as a master, I will be forced to make these difficult decisions again.

Because the truth is my job is never done.

Tales of a Master Gardener

Monday, February 1, 2016

She's Not Dead

... but her blog is.

August 16, 2015!
What the heck happened?

I mean sure, I'd slowed down and bit.
Only posted a blog here and there.
Lots of filler stuff like DIY projects.

But geez, nothing for nearly 6-months.
I should probably toss in the towel.

But then I think maybe I have something to say.
And then I forget what it was.

But hey, I have photos...

Yes, I know, it's still winter but it's also Texas and in the high 70's, low 80's. What else is a girl to do? Oh yeah, write blogs.

Well, this was my goal. Post at least one today, the first day of February.
*I like to do my resolutions a month later than most. I'm a rebel like that.

And I've 4 minutes to spare. Go me!