Wednesday, December 02, 2009
live close to the ground. In thinking, keep to the simple. In conflict, be fair and generous. In governing, don't try to control. In work, do what you enjoy. In family life, be completely present. --Lao Tzu
Do you have everything you desire? Are you as great as you could be?
I do. I am. My life is EXACTLY the way it is supposed to be. I am who I want to be.
I've gone through the entire spectrum - I had wild times, had a few flings, had one serious young man lay the material world at my feet, experienced numerous personal and professional successes (my favorite was when one of the better restaurants in town at the time offered me their upcoming catering section - ME!), I benched my own weight over 10 years ago and I will again - sooner than you think, had a couple of crazies decide I was the answer to whatever question it was the voices in their heads kept asking. One of them told me she was my biggest 'fan'.
I chose my soul mate over the Bentley and fancy dinners. I chose my children over a career that would have us living in double the house we do now. Although I do still freelance some, I turn work away regularly. I chose a somewhat simple existence with no crazies, no voices, no fans. I chose sneers and slights from people who only a few years ago would have looked at me as their equal. Because I have made the choices I have, many look down at me. The quest for material wealth does not make a person better. It MIGHT make them wealthier, but things don't make you better, happier, wiser.
My great grandmother was born into captivity in Ft. Sill, OK. (Geronimo was also a prisoner there and as a child, she would sit with the other children and listen to his stories.) She always said that everything that you own also owns you and that if you're not careful, you can become a slave to your things and have no life, just a lot of things. How smart is that? And very true.
I am completely satisfied with my choices and have a good life. We are comfortable. Our house is my age and is not absolutely perfect, but the things to be done aren't huge. I will get to them. I WANT to do them myself. I want my home to be of my work - my craftsmanship.
Choices. Everything you do is a choice. Choose well and you will be happy. Happiness is wealth that no one can take away from you.
Choose things that are motivated by or for other people and you will lose yourself over and over. With each small piece of the self lost to another's goals, peace and happiness will erode as well.
Make the right choice for YOURSELF. If you have to try and sell someone else on your choice to feel right or good about it, you need to re-think your choice.
Tuesday, November 10, 2009
(ok, forgive the repeat. the same entry for yesterday got deleted. User error or deficiency or something like that....) :)
There are two things I am grateful to my disease for: the emergence of my creative side and nowadays I stop and think about things (sometimes for a long time) before I act.
For the most part.
Been sittin' on the fence about something. Not much of a fence sitter. Really - after a certain amount of time has passed, I begin urging myself for a decision. If none can be reached, I put it on the back burner for a while and move on. Revisit the issue later instead of driving myself nuts.
My friend Steph has been doing Cross Fit for some time now. She's looking AWESOME. Really. I have gone and read about it and looked into and even tried some of the workouts. WOW, intense!
I became very interested in CF. The intensity seemed to be natural match for my nature - ever since I picked up my dad in our kitchen when I was 6, I've enjoyed feeling my body's strength and increasing it.
At the same time, the CF workouts shined a big ol' spotlight right on my weaknesses which really rubbed me the wrong way. Especially my balance. I don't expect to be perfect on my first few times out on anything - honest. But I do like to see improvements within a few tries.
When I do something that seemed to almost be planned to show my weaknesses, I almost feel picked on. LOL
Really, I wondered at one point "Is there ONE workout I can do that doesn't make me look like a _______________(insert feable sentiment here)?" It made me feel better when someone else admitted that it had made her feel the same way.
My first thought was to just go back to the old way. Get on the free weights and never look back. I did just that for a couple of weeks and the whole time I was grunting out my reps I was thinking about Cross Fit and how I could feel more intensity and rawness in 20 minutes than this 60 minute workout was giving me.
hmmmm.... what to do?
Get my hands busy. When I'm painting or bending metal or building something, I think about the tasks at hand, but for some reason, it also helps me think. Better. Clearer.
I know, the smallness of this trouble seems like a drop in the bucket compared to some people's troubles. But this is the rest of my life we're talking about and my re-entry into serious fitness. Not just dabbling here and there.
Saturday as I was putting a new 50lb slide under one of my big kitchen drawers, it hit me. Almost like someone thumped me in the head. Duh.
So, I will be selling off my P90X and Cathe DVDs and using the money to buy some rings and a bar.
I am a Cross Fitter.
Tuesday, November 10, 2009
Just received an email - I have been voted a SparkPeople Motivator.
Cried a little. Read it again.
A very heartfelt THANK YOU.
Monday, November 02, 2009
I make bread at least once a week. Some weeks, it's as many as 2 or 3 times. I mill my own wheat and am thinking about growing wheat in the future.
Since early September, I have been skipping bread altogether to see if my inflammation abated. It actually did. I still had a few aches and pains and soreness from use and overuse - but it was never anything that woke me up in the middle of the night.
My awesome friend, Steph, made me a loaf of friendship bread with her white wheat and YUM, I started eating bread again. Not pigging out, but a slice a day. One day I had two. The bread was delicious, had a beautiful crust and a delicate crumb. Tasty as hell.
Unfortunately, during the week that I was eating bread, my inflammation also increased. :( During the week, I ran ONE mile, jumped rope, have painted our son's bedroom, built a corner shelf in there and cut moulding to put across the front of it. Sat on the floor cross legged for 1/2 hour putting new outlets in. I can honestly say that I don't think anything I've done since my run has been excessive activity for me. Really, after hauling at least 10 tons of dirt 1 wheelbarrow load at a time. If anything should have hurt, I would have thought it would be my shoulder or back from doing the ceiling. Nope. I should not have had pain that woke me up.
But I did. Two nights in a row, now, hip and leg pain has woke me up in the middle of the night and prohibited me from sleeping for some hours. Even with IBU and cherry extract (my friend for pain), it took 2 to 3 hours to get back to sleep.
The last time I hurt this bad was in the beginning of September when we were all getting on the motorcycles and riding to Mt. Lemmon, then Kitt Peak and finally Colossal Cave. Had a lot of sandwiches those days and while I didn't eat bad, it was a lot of bread.
I am aware that my disease makes one more prone to celiac and I don't really believe that I've developed it full on, but I seem to be having sensitivities. However, a few weeks off and one week on is hardly enough evidence.
So, I will be continuing this experiment and documenting my results.
Tucson had a couple of freezing to near-freezing nights recently. We got out there and put up lights and row covers to protect the tomatoes and okra. I think we managed to save everything we were trying to. The mortgage lifter tomato has finally started making fruit and I am very excited. This is the plant that makes 2.5 lb tomatoes. So far, they're getting quite large and are looking good. I hope to get at least one before the plants go. However, I do fully intend to keep the lights and covers going for as long as possible. I don't expect to be able to nurse a plant into next year, but I'm going to try anyway. :)
The garlic, shallots, bulb onions, peas, carrots, radishes and green onions and eggplants are up, but they're moving slowly. The older bell pepper plants are producing nicely. Einstein the cat tears branches off of them tho. He's going to get himself into real hot water if he doesn't stop trying to be the gardening cat.
I didn't plant the corn right. I planted my corn so that they would all come up around the same time. Well, they did. We got 7 to 9 foot tall stalks, every one of them tasseled and every one of them produced at least 2 cobs. The first 3 cobs to come off were gorgeous and tasty. Cobs came along after the tassels had already blown and there were MAYBE 10 to 20 edible kernels. :( I will do things differently with the corn next planting. Stagger plantings by 2 or 3 weeks so that production can continue and cut deeper rows so they can get more water more efficiently.
Friday, September 04, 2009
My garden is progressing nicely. Like everything in life, there are bumps in the road sometimes. And just like anything else you do in life, you get out of your garden EXACTLY as much as you put into it.
I picked caterpillars off of my tomato plants for so long, I started seeing caterpillars that weren't there. My tomato plant rewarded me with a tomato that weighed 12 ounces. Once the days are 100 degrees and lower, the tomatoes will be producing heavily - not just one or two tomatoes near the ground, but tomatoes all over the plant. And the plant is almost 6 feet tall now. But it wouldn't be if I hadn't picked those caterpillars off.
My cucumber plants are dead. Cucumber beetles snuck into my garden and my cucumber plants perished. I have planted again with precautions in place.
I didn't SEE the cucumber beetles for a long time, so now I am beset with beetles - both striped and spotted. And they have targeted my okra and corn. For THREE days now, I have, in addition to my normal work, hunted and crushed beetles. This morning I caught a pair mating in the canteloupe blooms. GRRR. They're dead now, tho. Last night I had a dream about beetles. Won't share it cuz it was kinda gross, but maybe that gives you an idea of how many beetles I've encountered.
My 20 ton pile of dirt looked like this in the beginning.
After hauling a total of 106 loads, it looks like this. I shoveled all but 6 of the loads of dirt into the wheel barrow. I hauled and dumped all 106.
I've planted several more tomato plants - red pear tomatoes, yellow globes, Cherokee Chocolates - all heirlooms, red okra plants (an heirloom variety from Tennessee), Christmas Lima beans, blackeye peas, orange carrots and purple carrots. Mid-September I will plant two kinds of peas, garlic, bulb onions, shallots, garlic and a couple of artichokes. October and November I will plant asparagus - I have a place planned - I'm planting half from seed and planning to buy roots for the other half of the space. January or February will see the planting of potatoes, hopefully. If I had more room, the list would be longer! But I will save my confessions of a seed hoarder/addict for another blog. Here are the first 2 pumpkins we harvested yesterday They're curing in the sun for a few days.
I've converted an old dumpster into a composter. Used an old wire birdcage stand in the bottom to sift the compost. I cut a door into the bottom and seal it with duct tape. For the first time the other day, I opened the bottom and applied compost tea to my baby tomatoes and okra - they all grew more than TWO INCHES overnight!
When I add food trash to the compost bin, I layer eucalyptus leaves on top and then add a layer of manure. I need to get the bin to a place where it can get sun all or most of the day during the winter. A good place will present itself.
A friend of mine saves her garbage for me for composting. She keeps her coffee grounds, egg shells, fruit and vegetable peelings, melon and squash rinds (all PRIME ingredients for good compost) - she packs them up so nicely and saves them til we're able to get together.
The acorn squash, butternut squash and sunflowers are thriving, too. The sunflowers are 6 and 7 feet tall. The acorn squash are producing much quicker than I expected and one plant has over 6 squash on it.
The butternut squash is putting on a few squash here and there, too. I think the butternut is a slower producer - kind of like a pumpkin.
The corn is over 6 feet tall now. Below the corn, I have planted a white pumpkin, scarlet runner beans (they're good as green beans and as dried beans, too), and green beans.
Here's a pic of a giant cantaloupe (they look funny because they are heirloom too) that grew from the garden.
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