Weblog Commenting by HaloScan.com

My vision is to create a business from my garden, so that I can afford to leave my job, have the garden as income, and paint and write. I also want my customers to read the story of my garden, look at pictures, and get an idea of the process of the work of the garden.

Thursday, February 26, 2004

Can't remember why I am blogging. Oh, right--the garden. I have flats of seedlings growing in the house, upstairs and down. Some are not germinating, and I can't figure out why. But others are going great guns. The daylight hours are almost 12 and 12 now.

I will get the cold frame out this weekend and put it on the front porch. Then I will put out some of the trays of seedlings into the cold frame in the daytime, and take them in at night, until the last frost. Or until the daytime temperature starts to dip back down to freezing again. But by putting them in the cold frame, it frees up some space in the house under the lights where they are now.

We are working, working in the house. Now that the oil heat is in, and the house is comfortably warm, and one can do stuff in the house and not just huddle around the wood stove, Michel is working on the walls and last night I got the heat gun and starting stripping the yucky dark brown lacquer off the window trim. I did some way way back, and stopped doing it. Now it feels like possible to do it even when I get home from work. I can listen to the radio while I do a section. It feels good. I now have a lot of ideas for the house. Not enough money, but lots of ideas. I stayed at my AA sponsor's house for a few days recently, and got a lot of ideas from being in her peaceful, warm, beautiful house.

So, now I want to put a bathroom in upstairs. And my challenge is to do it on less than anyone in the world has ever spent on putting in a bathroom. There must be a way to find appliances, tub and shower enclosures, etc, some central place like ebay. I don't know how to use ebay, and don't want to try. I don't have enough time. But I know that when I put my attention to something, even just write about it, sometimes that grows.

Actually, I want to put in two bathrooms, one for each of the bedrooms. My sponsor has two bathrooms right next to each other in a space that is equal to the space I have. That way, if we need to rent out the back room, it will be better. But of course two bathrooms is too extravagant, too demanding of life.

And I want to build closets in our bedroom. I liked her closets, I want them for my room. See how demanding of life I am? Just one big wish list. And yet, I know that all my wishes are only illusions.

Tonight I am going over to Stephanie's to do a group meditation with Julia and myself. Just the three of us, to sit and seek to improve our conscious contact.

Tuesday, February 24, 2004

I was really angry when I heard that Ralph Nader was going to run for President. How could he? Didn't he understand that the important thing was to get rid of Bush?

But I watched him on Meet the Press and found myself responding to what he was saying. He does have a terrific analysis of the problems with the "democratic process" in which we all find ourselves. I am saddened by all of this, because as compelling as he is, and as right he is with his dissection of the problems, he cannot possibly win, as he isn't even going to be on all the ballots. And he may bleed away some people who would have voted for the Democratic candidate.

Somehow, what he has to say, has got to be part of the debate. He is like Dean, and I wonder if he waited to see what was going to happen to Dean, before he stuck his toe in.

I was able to watch Condoleeza Rice's cousin, Constance Rice on tv last week while I was at my sponsor's house. She is a lawyer who is very able at filing law suits in the most interesting ways. She is also very informed and knowledgeable, and on our side. I heard her also on Tavis Smiley's show last night, and she talked about how Tom Delay has structured the ways that Congress is totally shutting the Democratic party out of creating legislation. He is a very dangerous man, and he has to be stopped. She is someone to watch.

On a personal side, I read a book called Radical Honesty last week. It is creating a lot of thought in my mind. I will talk about that later.

Seedlings are growing under lights, upstairs. Our house is warm. I am going to Mexico in a couple of weeks. Life is better these days. Not just because of those things, but because I am turning all my problems over to the care of God as I understand Him. Or her. Or it.

Friday, February 20, 2004

I'm very tired. I am at work, but tired. I am doing a lot of thinking, these days, that's why. Just trying to get a handle on purpose. I don't know what my purpose is. Alcoholics Anonymous says that "our primary purpose is to stay sober and to help other alcoholics to achieve sobriety." That is a good thing, and probably should be enough. Maybe I am just chasing illusions, again. Thinking that if I had more money, more time, more love, I would be happier.

Truth is, I have more money now than I ever had, which really isn't all that much. But I am not a consumer. I am not hungering for new furniture, much as I enjoyed staying at my sponsor's house this week, with her very comfortable and serene house, where everything was clean and worked. I don't look at cars and think, "how nice it would be to have one of those," usually. I mean, sometimes one catches my eye. But I know myself in this, I would never buy a new car. I would be more thrilled to find a good deal on a used car. Clothes? When I left the fashion industry thirty years ago, I left because I knew it was the wrong field for me. It puzzled me that the women I worked with seemed to occupy their every thought with fashion--what's in, what's not, how to look better, how to get something for less. I did that for a while, but gradually it dawned on me that I didn't have the gene that translates into a fashionista. Lucky for me, I think, if I can make a judgment here.

What I think I really want is time. I want time to create, time to walk and breathe the sweet spring air, time to observe, take photos, plant the garden, paint the painting, go to art shows, travel. But maybe that's not my purpose, maybe that's all just for dessert, not the main course.

Certainly I have structured my life to prove that it is not the main course. But I haven't yet been able to chase after the greenback enough to give myself that time. And mid-life sensibility in me has the timely consciousness of shortness of life, preciousness of time. Therein lies the dilemma.

On another note, I am sorry to see Howard Dean drop out. I wondered if he was relieved to now know that that is not his purpose, to be the President. He was really refreshing, though. I was even more attuned to some of the things Kucinich had to say, but clearly he was too way out of the mainstream to even be considered. Dean might have been, though. But people said no. I still liked his scream speech.

Tuesday, February 17, 2004

I'm still walking on the dark side of life right now. Spent a day alone doing yoga, meditating, and going to meetings. That was in the day, but in the evening I just flipped through channels with the remote. I was tempted to watch Meryl Streep and Clint Eastwood again in The Bridges of Madison County, only because she is such a good actress and a real pleasure to watch. But I kept flipping. I was in a state of ennui, and wanted to numb my brain. It worked.

I did get to watch Howard Dean give a speech last night to supporters in Wisconsin. And I must say, I like him. I even liked his "I Have A Scream Speech!" that unravelled his campaign.

The meditation and yoga was refreshing. I am house-sitting for a week, near where I work, taking care of someone's cat. I call her "the Ghost Cat," because she only appears in my peripheral vision. I see a shadow here and there. But she eats her food, so she doesn't exist only in my imagination. The house is serene, solid, and very comfortable. It allows me to see that people can live in beautiful surroundings, which is a goal of mine. Right now, we are encumbered with a house that needs total and complete work, which my husband is working on. And the dust keeps coming. We have very little good furniture at this point, which is lucky, as it would only get ruined with all the ongoing work.

But to lounge in leather sofas, and meditate in a soft leather chair, to do yoga on a pleasant and comfortable rug, and to have a light-filled space, especially in the kitchen, is a nice experience. It is not mine house, but I appreciate being able to enjoy it for a short time.

Finally the snow on the towpath has melted. I went for an exercise-walk today at lunch, and pushed myself to keep going as I really wanted to go back, eat my lunch, and space out on the internet.

Tonight I am speaking at a detox at a hospital. That should fix my whining.

Friday, February 13, 2004

Happy Valentine's Day to everyone. Not feeling too strongly about Romance, just am feeling a lot of Love directed my way from those whom I have befriended, and from myself towards them and others, especially newcomers to AA.

I am speaking at a hospital on Tuesday night with two new women who have only about 100 days each sober, and they are willing to go to a detox and share what they have gotten staying sober for that little bit of time. Of course, to someone in a detox, 100 days is a very, very, very, very long time.

Tonight I am having dinner with a dear friend, and her adopted Chinese daughter. They are two of the lights in my life.
I feel that everything is changing in my life now. Monday I am staying over at a friend's house to house-sit, and I am taking that day, which is a holiday for my company, to meditate, do yoga, and write (step work). Clean house.

Love to you all.

Wednesday, February 11, 2004

I went for a lunch-time walk today with my AA sponsor. She came to my place of work, and we walked all the way through the town and back again. Didn't see a thing, as we were talking about some very heavy emotional stuff, stuff that I needed to talk about with her, and we just moved through space and talked. She is one of my guiding lights, a person I can totally trust.

When I left the house this morning, after a troubled, sleepless night, I did notice the very first hint of Spring-light on the landscape, though the sidewalk was covered in ice from yesterday's melt and last night's freeze. Now that there is heat in the house, it is more difficult to gauge just how cold it is outside. Before we got the heating system, you just knew how cold it was going to be, because the house's stones carried the frozen air inside, and certain places in the house never warmed up from the wood stove. Like the bannister in the stairway, which would be terrible to touch, as it was made of iron.

As I walked down the path, I noticed that the chickens were already outside, which seemed wrong, as no one had been out yet to open them up. I figured that my husband had forgotten to close them up last night, which also seems wrong, because they usually don't go out in the snow. But maybe he had let them out yesterday, but forgot to close their hatch last night.

That's all I can write right now.

Saturday, February 07, 2004

I am happy to be back. I got to do one of my favorite things at work yesterday, which is to write an article for the company newsletter, and on a topic I find interesting. I wrote about the healthcare issues in the current Presidential campaign, so I had to do research on the candidates' takes on them, and that was very interesting. Must say, I do like Howard Dean, even if I just don't understand what happened to his campaign. Seemed to have imploded. I watched him last week on Meet the Press, and found that he is very intellingent, very creative, although he has too many ideas trying to come out all at once, and he just can't speak that eloquently. Of course, compared to our current president, he runs rings around him verbally. I like that John Kerry was in Vietnam, and came back as an anti-war activist. Don't know how I feel about his life of privilege, his billionaire wife, or his taking so much money as they say he has from lobbyists. I am glad he is a liberal, and I think he is finding a solid voice, as we need to get rid of Bush before they create more havoc in the world.

Went for a walk around the block today. My "block" is about three miles of rural roads, past little farms, and in a snow-covered, hilly area. You can see bigger, purple hills in the distance. There are wooded areas, corn fields, and cows. Stone houses and barns. Long vistas of white, now, with the snow. I haven't walked the whole month of January. Either too busy, or too lazy. Now I feel the need to get moving again. Dragged my camera out of the closet the other day. I need to learn how to use it again. I want to take it to Mexico, and I was once a good photographer. It is a single lens reflex camera, and I used to take some nice photos. I want to take some to use for painting, as inspiration. This year I am getting back to my painting. Come hell or high water.

Some people have e-mailed me privately, not through the comments, so I know that some are still reading. That makes me want to keep on writing. I know that it is useful to me, somehow, to do this. I wish I could write as beautifully as Laughing Knees, but I can't, at least, I don't really put in the time to try. But maybe I don't have to. Maybe I can just write what I feel like, and forget about the beauty of it. For now, anyway.

Wednesday, February 04, 2004

It's been so long that I have blogged, I couldn't remember my sign in and password words! Maybe I am telling myself something. Also, no one is reading me anymore, or they are doing so silently, but if no one is reading me, then maybe I need to re-think having this weblog. It ostensibly was for my garden. I finally got around to starting some of my seeds, but the truth be told, I am even re-thinking the whole notion of having a garden business. I am starting it for this year, and I even mentioned to a restauranteur that I know that I would be interested in bringing her some of my produce, and she said she regularly bought from small gardeners, but this might be the last season. Reason is, we need to evaluate whether we can afford to keep our place. It might be time to sell, and move to a smaller domain.

There is a lot of financial pressure, and I do not have the time to spend in the garden, plus in the art studio. I am thinking of a life without all the financial pressure. As long as I have this job, a big goal is to save significant money for my retirement. This has become paramount, but we are still not able to really meet our monthly expenses as well as save the amount I am looking to save.

Maybe the next step is to get the house appraised, and see what we could sell it for. I would also like to move closer to my job, so that I am not using two hours a day for the commute. As long as the chief financial burden was on my shoulders, I took on much more work than was healthy for me, in order to save our place. The whole dream had incorporated making some kind of living from the garden, but now I am weary of full-time job, long commute, working in the garden for the six months that I can, and not spending much time in the studio. The amount of money i can make from the garden is not enough. It would be, if we were here when I retired, and collected my social security, and we could use the garden to supplement our income, but that is quite a ways away, and I am feeling the need to get back to my art work. My driving force is to feel some kind of financial security, and the expenses of our place put too much of a burden on me. So, while I will take the actions for the garden business, I am turning it all over to God, and will be ready to let go, if I can have more financial peace of mind.

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?