Working Wednesday, July 14,2021

This week, I threw things out. Many, many things. I was Marie Kondo, Terminator. Once I got into it, it wasn’t hard, I just had to break through the “Won’t this be useful some day?” barrier and toss with gleeful abandon. Well, with abandon. Also worked on a Loki essay, an essay on expectation, and a crochet scarf, but the big news is ten garbage bags by the curb (three in the little dumpster) and more to come.

What did you work on this week?

54 thoughts on “Working Wednesday, July 14,2021

  1. Hooray for you! That’s the hardest part – getting past the “I might could use this in the future” barrier. I was raised by a Depression era mother who kept everything because it could be useful, and it is so very hard to get past that. But I think I might be reaching that point, at least for some things. Hopefully, I can follow your lead!

    Meanwhile, I’ve finished the binding on two quilts I quilted a couple of weeks ago. The lattice work quilt used an ombre fabric. I quilted it with horizontal wavy lines, to emulate the movement of water. The lemurs you’ve seen before, but now they are done. They will most likely be gifted to my great niece.

    I went out with friends to a couple of quilt shops on Saturday. I now have several more new projects to work on. And I started a new baby blanket for my TV time. Ah, the new and shiny!

    But the biggest thing was cleansing the laundry / catch-all room in preparation for the new washer / dryer to be delivered sometime today. That felt pretty good – although some of my other rooms have suffered from the temporary relocation of stuff.

  2. “Marie Kondo, Terminator” What a great expression. And it’s the perfect combo. Once you start it’s hard to stop. I went a little bonkers in Spring and my sister had to remind me I still needed a different set of clothes to wear to work each day. I love the feeling of the purge. Enjoy.

  3. I did that a few years back when my son and his wife were living with me. It was like losing 30 pounds without the diet. I need them to come back and help me do some more adjustment to my stuff. They have their own place now and I have no real excuses for not getting rid of a lot of junk.

  4. Have barely started the great purge of the house. Had a bag for donation that had a hole in it. One of two amber necklaces was falling out. I had just bought a dress from Zara. It was the perfect necklace. Both are back in the drawer. Oh, oh. I will have to be ruthless.

    1. If it is real amber, don’t throw it away. It is getting extremely hard to find and very expensive. (I am a jewelry maker, among other things.)

      1. Thanks, Deborah.
        Yes, both are a combination of real amber and other beads. One has three types; red, butter and yellow amber. I was being ruthless. I’m glad I rescued them. Released some lovely amber rings and other things languishing in the lockdown. Lovely to wear some good jewelry again. And put on lipstick.

      2. I second this! Good jewelry is the one thing I regret letting go of. Pass it on to somewhere it will be loved, or list it on Poshmark. It’s so hard to find. And I am a sucker for Amber;)

  5. Boss is away, so my work week is weird (she said, alliteratively). Did freelance job in person for the first time since, you know; did three days with my sister; a few hours at real job here and there. It is SO hard to keep track of what day it is – don’t know how you people who always work from home do it.

    Meanwhile, my cupcakes from Saturday are almost gone. A frightening number of them into me, not for a lack of trying to share with others.

  6. I did almost no writing work over the past week; only a bit of reading/reviewing with minor tweaks on various works-in-progress. Put in several hours in the garden, which still looks scruffy and probably always will (meadow + natives + not dead-heading because hey, the birds eat those seeds).

    Weekend of July 3-6 I got a ton of writer business done because my designer was throwing me new and improved cover art. Need to send a couple requests for further tweaks. Have five things queued up to put into publication order, another new novel ready to go with minor tweak (the cover image is not perfect but we can always update it later, and I want to publish this book). Have a WIP that is calling but a new idea is threatening to muscle it out of the way. 🙂 May write some linking scenes on the WIP and then reward myself by working on the new thing.

    Day job continues to be demoralizingly busy. I’m keeping up, and without overtime, but it’s very mentally tiring. Cannot complain about having work, simply have to walk away and breathe/stretch occasionally during the day.

  7. I’ve pushed myself to buy new clay so I can make more snowmen, and I finished a jewel box that I started on last year but never got around to finish.
    I had a great sending-voice-clips-back-and-forth-time with my older sib yesterday. I haven’t spoken with them for quite a while, and it was a lot of fun. It eventually resulted in me pulling out a package of clay today and sitting down to make a clay figurine. It must be the first time since… at least 2017, if not longer, that I made a clay beastie from scratch. Felt good, but I’m now turbo-exhausted and will teamwork with Sven to get dinner done and then I’ll probably fall asleep. Zzz.
    Nothing new from the bank yet, but the agent gave our current place a great valuation, so it’d surprise me greatly if they’d say no. All this waiting though, pfff.

    1. Congratulations on your return to clay! I think that will make waiting to hear from the banks much easier and those snowmen are adorable!

      1. Thank you! It’s so great to hear that people like the snowmen. I started a little late on them last year (they were a spur of the moment sort-of-thing), so they all ended up in my own Christmas tree, but maybe they’ll move elsewhere this year if I post them online a little earlier.
        Funny enough I didn’t even think of the snowmen as being figurines until I read your reply, but they are too of course. The one I made yesterday is from heavier stuff though – not terracotta or anything, I unfortunately don’t have an oven for such heavy duty work – but sturdier clay than foam clay. And it’s not a snowman. It’s a crocodile. Imagination is a funny thing, and you can not decide what clay will become. Clay has its own life. At least in my hands.

  8. I did some purging too. I’m trying to redo the mudroom/laundry room/entrance to the house, and among other things I’m replacing two very large windows that have been broken since I bought the place almost 20 years ago. In order for my handyman to be able to get to the windows, I had to move all the stuff sitting on the unwieldy shelf in front of it (a tempered glass and metal monstrosity that used to be a TV stand and while it worked well to hold all the things, it really didn’t fit in the space). Which resulted in tossing a bunch of stuff, reorganizing others (although they won’t be back in that space until the window is dealt with), getting rid of the big shelf and buying two smaller, lighter units to put in their place.

    While I was in there, I got annoyed at the two corners filled with vacuums, brooms, mops, etc. and bought two hanging wall organizers. Put those up, and anything that was left over (except the larger vacuum) also got tossed.

    I probably have some kind of organizational neurosis, because doing those kinds of things makes me insanely happy.

    I also purged a large pine tree, although that was its idea, not mine. Part of it came down after a storm last week, thankfully falling into the meadow next to the house and not ONTO the house. However, the remaining 2/3rds of the tree was looking ominously in that direction, and there was very little stable wood left at the base. So yesterday a bunch of guys with heavy machinery came and took down the rest. It made me sad, and I’ll miss the shade it cast, but I really, really didn’t want to replace part of the roof. So there you go.

    1. I don’t think it’s neurosis at all! In any given life there are X things we cannot control; getting on top of our clutter means we’ve taken control of something with real, daily, emotional and physical effects. 🙂

      1. Pretty sure that’s exactly why I focus on cleaning, clearing and organizing – it’s one of the few things I have direct control over. Immediate happiness!

    2. I have to do that. I have one tree that is dead dead dead in front and another one in back. The one in back is a flowering tree so it’s smaller, but still a tree and a limb fell off of that. A big limb fell into my neighbor’s driveway and he said not to worry about it, he’d cut it up with his chainsaw. But yeah, I love trees but some of these have to go.

      1. Dead trees in the forest are a needed part of the ecosystem. Dead trees in a residential area are a danger. Our friends in Edmonton live in a condo that had a tree that looked healthy come down in a storm a while back. Fortunately, it fell perfectly into a gap between the trees on the green space behind the condo building across the alley. It wrecked their downstairs neighbour’s fence but there was no other damage. That same storm a big limb fell off a tree belonging to the other condo building and landed on a guy’s car.

        1. I have just over half an acre of wooded land, and the vast majority of I leave to do what it needs to do on its own. I’m on a small lake, so people tend to build houses and go for lawn, so I figure I’m doing my bit for wildlife, birds, and insects. But the stuff around my house? Yeah, that needs to come down as it dies.

  9. I’d love to go Marie Kondo Terminitor mode, but am too swamped by day job to find time.
    Yet dd did a good purge of her t-shirt cupboard. And dear old me has trouble letting go of the cute t-shirt with the bulldog puppy face on it that I got her not too long ago. Alas, I can’t wear it, it’s far too small, SIGH.

    I did manage to do a huge mountain of ironing. On Monday, the hottest day of the week so far, crazy me.

    Apart from having hardly any time (I’m working part time for fun’s sake, but hoarding overtime) what keeps me from doing any other work is Winter Orbit. Finally a book that has me enchanted – grrr, it’s not Good Book Thursday yet. Maybe I manage to finish in time.

    1. I might make the bull dog puppy into a cushion… would love to make a bag with a flap, but the bag would be too big. I’m always carrying too much stuff, so should avoid this…

    2. I was going to suggest making the t-shirt into a cushion cover, which is what I do with t-shirts I fall in love with, since I never wear them (crew necklines look terrible on me). But then you end up with a pillow cover and/or pillow that becomes clutter in some cases, and I see you’ve already thought of it.

    3. Ironing?

      I have one, but decided long ago that natural fibers need to be in their natural state.

      1. Rarely an option here. Listening to audiobooks or BBC Sounds can make it fun though.

  10. I found out that the people I had hoped to meet up with at my brother’s house in France have changed their travel plans so I must also change mine if I want to see them. Since I am toying with the idea of going up to Scotland while I am in Europe, I could do that first and then spend time with Mike and Vickie. But I would need to postpone my return by a week or 2 in order to make it work. I skyped with my brother about it today and he reminded me that his daughter did her first year of university in Edinburgh and loved it there and might have some good sightseeing tips to share. What makes this so interesting is that when I went to the South Island of New Zealand, my friend and tour guide kept telling me how much Dunedin looked like Edinburgh. Wouldn’t it be amazing if I could see for myself? Of course, extending the trip that long means that I would need to bring warmer clothes, but putting the Dordogne at the end of the trip would help with that because it is much warmer than home and Scotland and I might be able to avoid full winter gear. Let’s hope the news from the travel agent is good.

    1. I love Scotland. I would go back in a heartbeat if I could. If you go and you get the chance to go north, go to Orkney. It’s amazing.

    2. One tip I read is to buy a warmer jacket at a thrift shop in the town you’re visiting, and re-donate it when you leave.

  11. Blah, Blah Blah. I have the Blahs. The trouble is I have so many projects that need doing that I can’t seem to make headway on any of them. I need to reclaim my whiteboard and make a list. And I think I’ll Have a completed list so that I can see all the things I’ve done. Hopefully, I’ll feel less like a slug if I can see what I’ve actually accomplished.

    Yesterday I brought home my friend’s one-year-old lab mix to train for her. They need this exuberant baby to learn to leave the beagle alone among other things. So there you go, another thing for my list. Plus 5 coats I’ve promised to re-zipper for friends. That’s not counting any of the many many projects I have for myself…

    Maybe it doesn’t matter if I never weed wack around the propane tank and the mail box?

    1. Oh. Good luck with the pupper. I love seeing how others train because I kinda suck at it.

  12. Alrighty, then. Did I go Marie Kondo? No. I might need some of this stuff.

    Example 1: I have a cloth shopping bag from Tractor Supply. (No, I don’t own a tractor.) I use it to store the 15 cloth shopping bags I don’t routinely use. The 15 or so that I routinely use are normally in the car. There are others, but they have been misappropriated to hold Christmas lights and ormanents or Legos or other junk. They’re so convenient. For the dotter. If I threw them out, I would destroy the environment.

    Example 2: DVD movies. The dotter says, “Dad! You can watch any of these movies on Netflix or Hulu or….” Well, I prolly could, but I already own these DVDs. If I want to binge-watch Buffy or Angel or Babylon 5 or Gilmore Girls or Quantum Leap or Farscape or Enterprise or…. You get the point.

    Example 3: Fans. I have air conditioning again. I don’t really need the six fans. Seven, counting the one still in the box. But I might!

    Example 4: Laundry baskets. I’m down to just three. One for dirty laundry and two for clean laundry. Okay, well, I neatly hung or folded the contents of the clean laundry baskets – I knew those socks had pairs – and now there are three baskets nested together, holding dirty laundry only. But I know me, and when that basket changes to clean clothes, they will NOT fold themselves.

    Example 5: Rubbermaid containers. Okay, bad example. I have a ton of empties taking up valuable shelf space. I have resorted to storing canned goods in Rubbermaid, and that’s ludicrous. Scratch example 5.

    Example 5, again: Tools. I’m a guy. Marie can Kondo my tools when she can pry them from my… maybe not that extreme. But they’re tools. Surely nobody could expect me to decide which of my fifty screwdrivers are unnecessary! Oddly, there are only two hammers – one claw, one ballpeen. Or the bits for my portable drill, the ones that look like screwdriver tips. Must be a hundred of those. I need them, I does, my preciousssss. Anyway, they are neatly organized into three toolboxes and three toolbags. Mostly. Maybe some are in Rubbermaid.

    1. Fans: you will need fans at some point. My father always kept a new air conditioner in the basement (I know you don’t have a basement) bought on sale, ready to replace the next one that broke down during the hot season when air conditioners are NOT on sale.

      Hammers: only two?

      1. I thought it was odd, too. And I was right: I do have tools in Rubbermaid. Mostly screwdriver tips and drill bits.

  13. Oh, I need that commitment. In my case, know it won’t be useful but it’s MINE, and I want to keep it.

    My working was cleaning up and lesson prep. I’m also doing a meditation course online. So trying to keep up with my reading.

    Please send FGBVs, prayers, healing, and safety thoughts. Maybe even cast for rain to put out the fires. Most of the residential areas are fine. But the warehousing and business districts are not.

    It brings recent history of Rwanda, Kosovo, Yugoslavia, Afghanistan, and others to the front of my memory. I want to say “to stark relief” but I’m not sure if it’s the idiom I’m thinking about. I’m tired. And a bit worried about family and friends who live close to the worst affected areas.

  14. I’m working on adding moss to my plants; a local gardener told me it was the secret to keeping plants thriving in this hot, dry climate and it is true. I’ve done the raised garden beds, the potted plants, the side yards, and am working my way through the rest. My beans went from wilting to greening up and growing almost instantly so if anybody else is struggling with the western drought and heatwave, try some moss.

    1. Like… moss to try and keep alive, or like dead moss that just sits on top to shelter the plants and collect moisture a bit and block the sun? I had some hay or a dried grass I did that with that helped.. But it was already a pretty dry inclined plant. I don’t think I could keep moss alive with direct sunlight in the desert, but if it’s just a barrier I’m willing to go buy some haha

  15. Just plugging along. Bad pun as I am repairing some extension cords. And I have a meeting tomight and then meeting minutes to do. At least there’s no rush on those as we are back to monthly instead of weekly meetings.

    There’s so much I should purge. I may have convinced one of my sisters to come and go through the attic once it gets a bit cooler out. I can hope.

  16. My dad got a dumpster and is actually letting go of some things. He also let us dump a bunch of accumulated crap, which was fantastic. It feels like instant progress.

    In other news, I got my first pair of work appropriate supportive shoes today and am trying them out. Red leather Mary Janes from Taos. So far so good. Wide enough for my feet, plus arch support. We will see if they hold up to 9 hours or not. If they do, I will buy a set in every color, probably.

    Making lace ghosts and little black and white tree paintings at a slow pace, but hey, it’s something.

    1. Good luck! If you still need to look further, cast around for the type of shoestore that caters to the Sierra Club crowd. The concept of being able to stand on your own two feet for an extended period of time is not absolutely foreign in such establishments.

  17. It’s been an odd week at the day job. No response to all the things I was asked to do urgently apart from a one-line email yesterday morning suggesting the designer, back after a week off sick, would catch me up. Which she has, but she can’t help with the editorial stuff. I’m looking forward to having the on-the-ball junior woman back next week. Meanwhile, I’m starting the copy-edit.

    I weeded a third of the allotment. Must net the blueberries. And am currently erecting an anti-cat fence after finding an unwelcome deposit in the back garden.

    1. Your garden inspires me. My indoor garden sprouts got completely annihilated by the Roly polly bugs. And now I have fungus gnats positively thriving everywhere and scaly bugs on my gardenias. I’m starting to feel like I can’t win. The fact that you havethriving plants outdoors boggles my mind, despite knowing all food is grown that way haha

      I have neem oil I need to heat up and mix together to try on the scaly bugs. I’ve been using a mix of hydrogen peroxide and water per online and I think I’m actually making a dent in the bloody gnats. But sigh.

      1. It’s much harder to grow things indoors: pests frequently get out of hand. I’ve always got a queue of house plants waiting for the weather to warm up enough in late spring/early summer so they can go outside. But I’ve also lost all the flowers off my Lonicera x tellmanniana to aphids this year, and have lots of gaps in the borders due to slugs, snails and birds eating my seedlings and young dahlias. Gardening’s always a mix of frustration and delight.

  18. Can’t say that this was much of a working week, but I really enjoyed the family party (pizza and birthday cake) yesterday. This morning I contemplated the shopping list and concluded that I didn’t need to go all the way out to Target at the crack of dawn; I could just hit up the local supermarket instead. So I spent a couple of hours after breakfast providing a napping spot for my two adult cats while listening to a legal podcast (Clean up on Aisle 45) on the Kraken legal hearing Monday. Surprised I didn’t bounce the napping cats off my chest and lap while laughing and snorting and giggling.

  19. I had to physically go to my office today and I spent over six hours just doing international mail. Exhausting.

    Other than that, I’m finishing up Shrek and starting on Camelot–first rehearsal tomorrow, I need to read the script/finish watching the show online, things like that. i also want to write a long letter to a friend of mine who just lost her dad and resurfaced again.

  20. working on not letting the sad take over. Maybe I’ll go outside. It’s sunny for the first time in days. We’re in lockdown but groceries are getting low so I could, maybe.

    I was so excited that we were to move from this house I’ve never loved and from this city I find too loud and always crowded. And now. . .we probably still will move but not for an undetermined number of months, at least four, with a much smaller budget. Worse, due to smaller budget, which is due to sudden job loss, we have to start all over on the question of where. Which we can’t begin until several potential job questions are explored. Which questions cannot be explored properly until the lockdown ends.

    I want to be using this time, clearing out, packing seasonal and non essential. Or some of the organizing that will need to be done no matter when or where we move.

    It’s nice here, where other people are getting things done.

    Oh, slippers -finally found a yarn combination that looks and feels good. The half done one by my chair makes me smile when I see it. I’ll definitly work on those tonight.

    1. I feel you so much on the moving part. I’ve never liked this place either, and I’m both excited to get out of here but also afraid it won’t happen because well, you never know with banks. The housing market isn’t exactly cheery at the moment either. I’m sorry to hear your moving plans – and probably also general finances – got such a hard blow. 🙁
      Hope the sunshine will do a little to drag the sad out. Sending you a big load of strenght!

    2. Try and be kind to yourself meanwhile, Clancy. As much as you can, do things you enjoy. Your best resource is going to be you, and you need time to recover. Sending good thoughts.

  21. I have continued my cooking binge as a way to work on improving my diet. Most days I don’t feel like I eat enough greens, so I’m making an effort to pack them into more meals. Side salads just aren’t as appealing in winter.

    Other than that, I have been incredibly lazy. The same clean laundry is sitting on the airing rack from last week, and the rest of the housework hasn’t done itself either. I’m telling myself it’s just lockdown paralysis because that’s happening again down here, but I’m not sure I believe me.

  22. I’m plugging away at the day job and getting ready for a clean up this weekend as the FIL is coming for a visit next week. Some of the last minute things like a really, really good vacuuming will have to be done on Tuesday after Paul leaves to go to the airport to pick him up.

    I’m hoping we will have nice weather so we can eat outside and I don’t have to worry about setting up my cutting table as a dining table since the chairs that are low enough for that table aren’t exactly conducive to bad hips and knees. The forecast is calling for showers, which I’m not complaining about as we desperately need rain – we had 5 lightning-strike fires start within a few miles of town yesterday during a storm – but eating outside would be easier.

    It’s now Thursday, and the fires are out but the smoke from all the other fires to the west of us and through British Columbia is here which did away with my plans for working outside for an hour this morning before work.

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