One more sleep til 2020

One tends to reflect on the eve of a new year. (nose crinkle) This last day of January, I feel better than I have in ages. Still horrid, but not too bad at all. I self-diagnosed and think I hurt my back this last summer moving boxes. It aches and aches and I was almost in tears the other night. It even hurts into my right butt cheek! I see the MS specialist on Monday next, we’ll see if she addresses something other than MS. (Often a specialist will send you back to your regular doctor for other issues. Annoying, but I guess it is less hassle for them.) I don’t make resolutions or plans. It is almost another day that has a lot of  noise at midnight and not much else. So, to reflect from the bottom up. .

This last year I’ve read 171 books (in 2018 I read 154), most of them are old friends, but some are brand new reads. I’ve not baked near as much as usual (today I did make an odd batch of cookies, it only made about 4 and a half dozen). I did get much of mom’s house cleaned, even if there is so much left it makes me want to scream! I’ve spent hundreds of dollars on that place and mum with no to little hope of recouping any of it. I’ve not heard from the IRS to see if they are going to seize her property. It is in my name, so I’ll just go on like it does belong to me and go from there. I do not have all my holiday cards sent, I reckon I’ll finish that in the New Year. (Last year I didn’t send more than a few, so getting out more is a positive step.) I created new gardens and was a part of a November/December cycle of sick. I purchased a fitted bra, ran off and met mushers, and realised how people will step up to help in the most frustrating of times. There are a great many good people in the world, I’ve met quite a few this last summer. It has been a year with more positive than not and I am grateful.

The oddest thing. I’m a fretter. (It makes for a good story later) I tend to whine (like my followers don’t know that! Lol). I tend to fold up into naps when the chips are down and hide in fiction. The other day I got the oracle fairy cards I have and stood outside with no real question to have answered other than vague thoughts of the future and what might be next. I shuffled and dealt myself three cards and came inside to set them down on the table. I don’t know much about reading these fairy cards, I have a tiny notebook that has meanings inside.

The first card was upside down. This (the booklet says) means it is difficult. The card was ‘Rise above problems’. To step back, let go and be at peace. The second card was also upside down. It read ‘New Opportunities’. This one had a drawing of an open window on it telling me to stop looking for a door and take the window. To trust and to go to new places. The last one was face up and was ‘Breaking Free’. To stop being afraid and let go, although this one also talked about being responsible. The odd part? I’ve been seeing and hearing these thoughts all around me. In books I’ve been reading, in sermons, in other blogs I have read in my email.  To stop being afraid and to let go and to be myself. To let go of what might happen with the house and just do what I can. To trust those around me instead of just existing with them.  I am not the horrid person I think I am (although, there is a FB quiz that tells your inner you and your outer self. Outside I’m Snow White, inside I’m Darth Vader!)

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It is easy for me to get back into that person who serves and does and pushes herself away for others. I know I am a fortunate person. I have nothing to do except chores. I can read or play word games that annoy me because what the heck does that word mean and why did they use it and not something normal that won’t play anyway? (sorry, bit of a pet peeve there) Granted, I often am ignored and at the same time, I’m noticed.

Little Bear helped me research the Christmas present I wanted and he made sure to get it for me with his dad on Black Friday. The Craftsman gave me cash to help pay for a passport and Little Bear gave me a gift card for Amazon that I will use to get gifts for my family for birthdays. (because any of ‘my’ money needs to be spent on the house) I did not get a stylus or the energy bars I suggested might be nice stocking stuffers. No matter, as Little Bear said, I can use the Amazon card and get a box of styluses! So, yes, I am fortunate. Jake is using a lot of things she’s conned from mum’s and tells me this via fb or in brief calls. The antique dishes and silver and crystal and furniture. I’m glad they seem to be making her happy. She’s losing weight (now I’m the fat one! lol), spent a weekend in Seattle with her oldest, and seems to be busier than ever. I hope she can pen time to help me into her schedule next summer, but if not, it will be ok. I’ve learned how to wait, but I’ve also learned not to. Life happens in spite of what we want!

I don’t know what sort of exercises might need done to help make my back and right arm/shoulder feel better. I don’t know much at all. Yet, I am blessed by different friends around me online who encourage and care and let me grow. And someday The Craftsman might just do more than rest his hand on my hip or thigh and go to sleep!!! (OK, that latter might be expecting beyond reality, but I do love fiction!) YIKES! One thing I need to remember is to pay attention to the kitchen when I’m not in there. I was typing away and plumb forgot I was boiling eggs. Thankfully, there was about an inch of water left in the pan when I walked in to find a snack. I reckon it is a good thing I don’t have a lot to do, I don’t do what I need to very well! Silly, Kris. (Perhaps that will change..probably not!)

All in all, I think the best thing to do this next year is to focus and ‘Always Look on The Bright Side of Life‘. Shall we? (YouTube)

Sicko

I managed to join the ranks of sick people in the house. Except, I have something different. (Of, course. 🙄) I have a wicked sore throat and all over weakness, instead of the wracking cough and sniffling stuff with sinus infection or earache. I also went to the dr and have some antibiotics. Hopefully, they work.

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My favorite stylus has a ruptured knob, thankfully, the pen part still works. It’s blowing rain sideways, oddly the wind is warm. The guys ate every speck of the two packages of halibut I cooked last night, but at least there aren’t any leftovers. The dishwasher is out of the spot remover goo, not that we used it before this dishwasher (as you can tell by previously washed glassware! 😳). I got two packages mailed the other day, a handful of addressed cards are on the table, and my window flowers are dropping petals like they are being used in a wedding procession. I’ll get new flowers next Monday, I’ll work on cards this weekend and mail those Tuesday, and hopefully those packages reach their destinations safely. One is to Alaska and one to Virginia.  I haven’t managed to cook the cookie dough I made the other day, I cannot put it off longer. It is the expensive ingredient dough. (Naturally!)

The tree is decorated because The Craftsman insisted, in spite of his sickness! (I put on probably 5 decorations before I folded!) There isn’t a train under the tree yet, but that all depends on whether the dad puts up the Lionel set or the kid drags out his LEGO one first. (The cats appreciate both.) A train will help take up presents room, a good idea! I ordered one for Little Bear and it has a ‘here by’ date for the of the end of January or beginning of February (I forgot to see where it was coming from). It should arrive for his birthday.

All in all, I’m not exactly ready for the next holiday. Nevertheless, the relentless march of time continues and by this time next week, it will be over for another year. At least the festive part, the cleanup won’t be done til after 12th night, in January.

Pet peeve: the 12 days of Christmas being celebrated before Christmas!

Suck it up

I need to suck it up, put on those big girl panties (I’ve worn a lot of underwear since my return to Oregon!), and deal with things I’m afraid of. One of my good friends, he’s no longer on this side of the path, once told me my fears were rather irrational. He’s probably correct. So, here I sit quivering on the couch because of some stupid black crawling creature on the bathroom wall.

Little Bear now has what his dad has. He’s coughing and hacking and retired with a second half dose of that wonder elixir called NyQuil. So, when I discovered an interloper in the bath, I cringed and went to find The Craftsman. He was busy on the internet looking up car parts or something. I gently tugged on his shirtsleeve and told him there was a spider on the bathroom wall between the sink and tub. I said it was scary having it stare at me and I needed to brush my teeth and I’d be pretty nervous taking a shower in the morning. He chuckled and replied he’d not seen it, but he’d take care of it. I thanked him and went to the kitchen to wait, leaving the bathroom light on so he’d not have to do that step in the elimination process.

I sat on my little bench to read. After a chapter in my story, The Craftsman showed up to say goodnight and turn off the Christmas lights. (They are cleverly set up to switches in the kitchen. Six switches.) He didn’t say anything, but Little Bear is the quippy kid when t comes to rescues (he also responds the second I have trouble..be it insect or wound!). I noticed the light was still on in the bathroom and looked at him quizzically. He responded in kind. I shook my head and said ‘nothing.’ However, when he went to bed and I went inside the bathroom, the spider was still on the wall! 😳😳😳😳

I decided to try to smash it myself. I have done this before..rarely, but I have. I picked up one of Little Bear’s giant rubber boots and gently put it back. Not only were they heavy, they also had giant tread and dried mud. (Nope, not on my walls!) The empty pizza box was too flat (he collects them to make targets). I saw the cane The Craftsman made me. It is long with a flat end. Except, my hand eye coordination isn’t too grand and when I got near the spider, I bumped it and it dropped to the floor behind the trash can.😱😩😱

I eventually did brush my teeth. Of course, I stood on the other side of the bathroom staring at the area where that elusive crawler might be. My heart rate is not quite calm yet. I am not impressed. I can totally see how Little Bear is a first responder sort and I sincerely hope he feels well enough Saturday morning to search and save his mom from certain small scary things.

On the unrescuing hand, The Craftsman did bring  home the movie ‘Aquaman.’ 🙂😍😍🙂

Fiction or Non?

I’m sitting up reading and commenting on stories of people (blogs) I follow, many of them dear to me. I went to a Christmas breakfast last Saturday and listened to a life story of a relative. The wife of a state senator, a portion of her story she finds not entirely relevant to the book she’s living. As Sarah says in ‘A Little Princess’, ‘we are all a story.’  I look at mine, (it’s what we do at the end of the year, look and reflect) and I wonder.

I devour fiction. I have a pin that carries the words ‘Fiction is Fun!’ I agree. I love to write fictional stories and create characters (sometimes the characters don’t listen to me, I finally just let them behave the way they want.). Yet, in prose and poetry and in Around the Korner  (unless otherwise stated), I write nonfiction. I’m more honest in this place than I am anywhere else. Facebook has been encouraging people to post photos of now and then. I laughed. I may have been on Facebook for ten or so years, but I’m not in many pictures! And I wonder how fictional those posted are?

It is crazy how life twists and turns like a skein chased by a kitten through a dining room. At this moment, I’m resigned to leaving my home next summer and not going back. There is so much I need to get organized there, but more here. (Probably because I’m bringing so much of mum’s debris back to Oregon!) My health is terrible, my soul cries out to stay north, but if I look at choices in a nonfiction manner…gods, I hate being logical. I did have a dream where I had a small house in a part of the area I don’t want to be. It was just a dream. Maybe.

Talking to The Craftsman about anything serious is difficult. We do have a long car ride this week, but he’s sick and I know difficult things are not easy to discuss when a person is sick (which is more than likely why sick kids used to each tv all day! Not mine, mine had to stay in bed resting if they were home from school. My kids nicknamed me The Evil Momster.).

(WordPress didn’t like my nickname, so I need to start a new paragraph. It keeps changing me to a mobster!) At any rate, it should be an interesting trip. I’m just going to keep him company. Little Bear is worried he’ll need to manage the house. I’m betting we will be back by the time he gets off work. If the trip was with the kid, we’d stop and take pictures. The dad is less inclined to meander. It’s a matter of perspective. Little Bear uses a vehicle to take him places he can’t get to easily. The Craftsman uses a vehicle to fix and get from point a to point b. Granted, sometimes the second perspective is necessary when the first one goes awry. Those end up great stories after time softens the incident! (Truck in a ditch during deer season)

Needless to say, I’ve no idea where my story is right now. Besides staying up past 2am in a chair in Oregon. I do know I need to start eating like I did in Alaska (less bread and sweets and more veggies and meat), my hemoglobin  A1c is horrible! We can’t afford a cool doohickey to help monitor my glucose, but I’ll manage. I’ve not decorated for the holidays much, I felt it didn’t matter. This weekend we’ll put up a tree and watch Muppets Christmas Carol. That will definitely perk me up! I’ll also send out boxes and maybe even Christmas notes. Giving is the best part of this season. I enjoy that part of the story. It’s the fun section in the nonfiction. 💕

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Favorite Things

I often sing parts of that song, thankfully it isn’t a Christmas one, so not too many people look at me askance! Among my favorite things are a great kitchen. (I think I wrote about this room in here once before, but it is ok to be repetitive now and then!!!) One of the bloggers I follow posted about kitchens and it sparked a tremendous response. (I think I noticed 120 comments between her and her followers!) It got me thinking about the kitchen in my Oregon house. (the Alaskan kitchen is crowded and only good for a single person who cooks frugally..like I do when I’m alone!) I don’t call the kitchen here mine, even though it mostly is. That is because I didn’t really plan for anything in it except the paint. The Craftsman put it all together on his own. Several things I was uncertain about, but they work, so it is good. All in all, it is a wonderful spot and I’m grateful. The walls are Irish Cream with Peanut Butter trim and the ceiling is Fudge Truffle. (I would love to name paints!!!)  There are two windows, one giant one above the sink with a sill for flowers and a high enough curtain rod for crystals and mirrors. (Mittens absolutely loves sunny days when she can chase the white lights and rainbows..oddly, red dots don’t do much for her.)

It isn’t as tidy as I thought. (Piffle) I’d prefer the stove to be gas, but it isn’t in the cards at this time. The stove is ‘new’ to me. Most of the kitchen is from Craig’s List or neighbor’s who are getting rid of things and need to sell them cheap. (the countertop is Home Depot, although The Craftsman made the counters!) I love the counter space. It seems to go for miles! The counter with the chair is annoying. Mittens loves the chair and no one but The Craftsman can sit comfortably there due to the height. The Craftsman took found wood and put a back with a door on the cupboard (it has doors on both sides!), but he measured it to himself. He’s 6’3″. So, that particular counter is ‘an absolutely beautiful well crafted from saved old wood’ catch all space.

The Craftsman comes by his name naturally. He had an old stereo cabinet he envisioned would make great shelves. I wasn’t so sure, but it turned out both clever and unique! The kitchen is still large enough you could bring in a wheelchair if you wanted.

There are several small appliances in the room. (on top of the fridge is one that belongs to Little Bear, a meat grinder, I think…) In the corner next to the oven are a covered bread machine (the cover was actually made for a sewing machine!) and a partially covered mixer from last Christmas. The toaster is also covered, it is rarely used! Above those is a small cupboard where I keep a small crock pot and a blender. (There is a beautifully crafted shelving unit on the wall, it used to hold meds til the bottle size and amount of prescriptions changed!!!) On the counter are many things I wouldn’t mind moved, but they really aren’t exactly in the way! The counter that is nearest the laundry room entry has the microwave. Little Bear calls it the microwave that lasts forever. It is at least 30 years old and only has a slight door issue. (probably cuz Little Bear punches the button instead of pressing it…) When we moved to this house, you had to walk thru the kitchen to get to the laundry room. We created a hole in the wall and now there is a large space that holds more stuff (insert eye roll!) and avoids the main working kitchen entirely.

My absolute favorite thing in this kitchen is a bench/stool. Little Bear made it for me ages ago and it is used a lot. Mostly for sitting on and reading. The cats like to sit in the window next to me or under my legs near the heater. It is a perfectly cozy place and handy if I’m cooking and waiting for things. I can sit and read and not leave the room.

It really is a favorite thing. (I think I love the rainbows and sparkles as much as Mittens!)

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