Monday, April 29

Spring Cleaning

This is to expand upon my thoughts from yesterday. : )

I've been trying really hard to par down on collecting junk with keeping a future move in mind. Been helping others organize and sort through their decades worth of stuff and I don't want to get to that point. I'll never be as simplistic with my stuff as the SO or my folks are, but I'd like to find a happy medium. I've done pretty well with using up the supplies that I have, but I kind of need help.

Using it up with others is motivating in a fun way and it draws my loves of sharing and teaching into the mix. One of these days, I'll have more friends who are actively interested in such things. I have a bunch that have expressed interest but crafting just isn't a priority for them as it is for me. Totally understandable and I love them all the same. It just makes crafting a bit lonely.

Got rid of about half a dozen boxes, recycled a bunch of papers, and sorted the keep pile items into where I'd want them to end up.

However, those spots don't quite exist yet. The nice big boxes that I want to use are holding more junk still. It's hard to figure out what to do with decor items when you don't have your own place to decorate and what to do with those random kitschy items you get as gifts.

I don't want to throw them away because they were pretty recent gifts, but at the same time, I know some of them were given to us just for the sake of giving a present ("Oh, we about to see them. Should bring them something. Uh... what about this random thing? Yeah, we're just going to go with that.").

If we're moving out of state, that'll be a good enough reason to part with them. Take pictures to remember the moment and let it go. For now, those will just end up in their own box.

Another group of things that are taking up a lot of room are memorabilia type of items. I'd love to scrap parts of them to honor them, but for those types of items, I'd need a bit more money to spare. not happening anytime soon. Started writing the year I receive greeting cards (I keep them all because I don't get that many, let alone handwritten stuff from my loved ones) on the back to remember. Wish I had done so sooner. My memory is so bad.

Put a date on everything.

Unless you are one of those people that are really good at remembering where things came from using context clues. I can barely do that on a test.

My cleaning looks so much worse than when I just have a mess. I need/ use up all of the available surrounding space when I'm re-organizing. Just oye.

It will be nice to have everything sorted and contained. Then, I can really tackle parring down my stuff in one way or another. I'm thinking a bunch of giveaways to friends, donations to school or whatnot, re-gifting seems out of the question, and tossing out the rest after documentation.

Oh man, we should revisit the boxes of stuff we packed 2-3 years ago when I first moved in here. I think we were pretty good and it was mostly kitchen stuff I had brought from my apartment. My filed papers and books are still hidden away at my folks' home. At this point, that stuff could fit into a car and driven over. I've squirreled away quite a bit in my multiple trips to visit.

Another visit is being planned for this summer! I'm doing my best to only be excited about that.

Got to stop rambling in a nervous panic-procrastination. :P

Sunday, April 28

Dusting It Off

Guys, I haven't bought anything from Michaels or Joanns in several weeks. I would say months, but I think I needed something for a gift or school project around the holidays. I cannot remember but wouldn't put it past myself.

Let's get to the week's recap.

Thursday: It was a very windy day again and I went to help a friend organize and begin the packing process.

Friday: I found my camera after examining the bed area. That's where I remember seeing it last when I was trying to pass out from exhaustion. It had fallen between it and the wall but is still working fine! Hooray! Ran some errands for the cooler and whatnot.

Saturday: We're trying out Star Trek Online. It's a free MMORPG and we are fans of the franchise. There is so much text to read in the beginning areas, it's borderline ridiculous. I really want to like the game.

Another big thing I tackled today was going through my 2012 Project Life pages and applying a double mat as the background. It's a pretty effect, simple technique with the free template, but tedious as heck. It's done and I learned some tricks about recoloring and resizing elements in Photoshop Elements.

Sunday: Weekends are supposed to be my chance to sleep in/ catch up on sleep and I've done a terrible job of it. It's namely the early morning heat that has been waking me up. We definitely need to set up the evaporative cooler soon.

I just dusted off the ceiling fan in the dining room and turned it on. It's the only working fan in use in the house right now. This is going to be an uncomfortable spring.

With the "extra" time I had, I started tackling a task that has been on my resolutions list but I hadn't worked on yet- sorting through and getting rid of the clutter from my "Miscellaneous" boxes. They are stashed around the house, out of the way, and vary in age from two years to two weeks.

I'll ramble more in a later post.

Here's a garden vlog I filmed this weekend once I got my camera back!

Wednesday, April 24


I'm slightly miffed for two reasons tonight.

1) I've had a head cold going on two weeks now and it keeps my body perpetually tired-sore.

2) My camera has been misplaced yet again in this haze of being groggy all of the time. As we well know, this aggravates me to no end. What is going on?!

I didn't even realize that I posted the same cover music video twice last week, but I don't think I'm going to change it. It's been a while since I've posted pictures, don't even know where to begin. Let's just get the mid-week review out of the way.

Monday: Despite having an elevated body temperature, I finally used my new yoga mat and dug out my hour-long Power Yoga DVD and heaved my way through the entire routine. Oof. I loved the feel of my new yoga mat and will definitely take a picture of it once I find that danged camera.

I tried to do some work on my PL 2011 and managed to mull my way through creating the title and last pages of the 2009. 2010. and 2011 albums. I was just using the prescribed cards in the exact matter recommended, so it should not have been as hard as it ended up being. Blame it on realizing that last year had the least number of photos out of the past 4 years.

Why did I ever think it was going to be possible to combine 2010 and 2011 into one book? Something must have possessed me that day. I also realized that I had only scrapped the first two months of 2009 in my first full-length scrapbook (our first year of dating). Meaning that the year I moved across the country would have no more documentation. Derp.

Had to re-evaluate which Project Life kits I was going to use for which year for simple cohesion. That and giving myself less options and more encouragement to just get it done. This is going to take a long while.

Tuesday: I managed to slap pictures on the first two pages of PL 2011 January. Picked my common "theme" for the album and stuck on a few journaling cards. My cousins in Germany got their physical copy of the infamous Florida scrapbook plus a Perry the Platypus messenger bag for my youngest cousin there.

I was so wiped in the evening that I just crawled into bed sometime around 9 o'clock. That's a solid three hours earlier than usual. It was so good but I still need to catch up a little more.

Wednesday: Stampin' Up! released their latest retiring products list, so I went through my catalog and marked everything that was being discontinued. Made myself a sandwich that I usually only have when I visit my family, briefly chatted with my mom after a week of phone tag (her phone still died 15 minutes into the car-ride conversation), and caught up on some YouTube subscriptions. 

I may or may not have unburied one of my garlic plants because I could not figure out if they were ready to be harvested. Long story short- no. I have small bulbs of garlic growing though! I snapped a picture with my cellphone and put it back into the dirt. I'm so excited.
That took longer than I was expecting. So here are some photos from this past month. There's not a lot, let alone much that I'm good with sharing on the blog.

 So there's a few Walmart markets being built and opened up in town and that's the Pharmacy drive-thru. Something's not quite right...

This little mister has been so lounge-y with the increasingly warmer weather.

This was at the park where FMIL and I went to an astronomy-teacher party. That's the little river that probably ate all of the papers the dust devil stole from us.

This was the pile of tree-bush branches I went crazy and hacked away from a wall in the back yard. It'll make nice smelling kindling for the next bonfire. 

 I think this is the first time that this Amaryllis has bloomed. I shopping-enabled FMIL to get the bulb from our favorite local nursery last spring. It was at least twice the price we would normally pay but it's definitely different from all of the other ones she has!

Sunday, April 21

More Music

I have been pretty bummed out over personal things this weekend, so I can barely remember much more than that right now.

Friday: FMIL and I were going to go to Ladies' Happy Hour, but she ended up getting Strep and I'm sick yet again. I guess it's been a few weeks since I could breathe. It could be severe allergies thanks to the gunk being blown in the air. Not sure, a bunch of the kiddos at work at suffering from terrible coughs, extended headaches, and plenty of tummy aches. Can't remember what else I did that day besides crash when I got home.

Saturday: My head was really stuffy, but I did some yard work before the SO sprayed the house perimeters for bugs. I also worked in the garden and I promise that there will be a photo round-up sometime this week. My friend was ending a 125 hour live streaming marathon with two other hosts and I tuned in to help for the past few days.

Sunday: I have just had a quiet and overall sad day because it happens. For a number of reasons. Kitty has been very comforting and sweet company. It wasn't until the late evening that my spirits lifted a little again. I'm a little sore in odd ways thanks to the yard work I've done this week on top of being sick. Hope it ends soon.

Here are some videos/ songs that I've been obsessed with this week:

Thursday, April 18

Urg Again

So FMIL has strep and I'm getting sick again. Didn't we just do this?

We're struggling to rest up and recover so we can make it to the Ladies' Happy Hour tomorrow. It's a place downtown that FMIL has been vying for a while now. Bah.

Rough week at work and I'm trying really hard to not complain aloud too much. It's nearly painful but will lead to healthier relationships with those around me. Maybe. You know, If I don't harbor as much anger inwards either.

I'm working on a plan. The SO is helping me out too.

Monday:  I finished the bulk of my Project Life 2012! I feel a little odd that I started with the most recent year and then planned to work backwards. Instead of seeing how my style improved over time, it would nearly be the opposite.

Well, only partly, because I wanted to use an older kit for the older years. I'm sticking to one kit per time period to reduce my choices. It really helped save time but I didn't enjoy only using my top three preferred journaling cards. 

I think I plan to revisit and refine the 2012 album after I finish the 2010-2011 album. They will probably be together because I don't have nearly as many pictures or notes. Once all of that is done, I'm thinking about indulging in more than one kit for this current year.

Still cannot believe I have an entire year done in a matter of a few weeks of chipping away at it! That is the beauty of these products.

Tuesday: Late night at the office, made the cover page for the next PL album, and then went to help a friend sort through her big ole book collection. She's moving in the next couple of months so it was preliminary packing and purging. Mixed in with furniture rearrangement for the same reasons.

Wednesday: Alright, here are the reasons why I was too cranky-tired to write yesterday. The laminator at work has a jam so badly that the rollers won't budge. I'm first in line to try to fix it because we've bonded. That led to a late night of very little progress. Still haven't been sleeping well, so was already cranky-tired when I came home.

I watered the garden but then attacked a row of overgrown bushes in the backyard. It makes it inconvenient to spray for bugs in that area (by FMIL's bedroom) and we got her blessing to get rid of what we needed (its roots are probably responsible for her bathroom shower drain not working for years now). Attacked it with a vengeance with the clippers and saw. It had desperately grown untamed in so many wonky ways for so many years that just clipping off some dead branches left odd-looking gapes a few feet away.

Didn't really care thought, I just wanted to destroy something and was trying my damnedest to channel my energy in a positive manner. I shall post pictures when I'm feeling better. I also did a ton of overdue laundry, tried to cook something new for dinner, took a relaxing long shower, and moderated a live-stream chat for a little while. Did I feel relaxed and calm after all of that? Nope. Only marginally.

I gave up and went to bed.

Thursday: Woke up today feeling cruddy in my head and throat. So many of the kids have been getting sick from the intense wind, allergies, and fluctuating temperatures. Only a matter of time until it hit us again. Tried to fix the laminator again and just hung out in the video live stream moderating chat for the past few hours because that meant I could help someone out without leaving my chair. :P

Here's a cover-song I just love right now (to make up for my ranting):

Wednesday, April 17

Little Bit Of Color

It's been a long and cranky day, so my normal post will be up tomorrow.

In the meantime, here's a update from the garden!

Sunday, April 14


My mood was significantly subdued today after a late night of intense discussion within myself and aloud with the SO. Not that it was a bad thing, just draining in more ways than one.

Going to reflect upon my attitudes and subsequently influenced behaviors, especially how they are interpreted by others (as well as how it has affected them).

Thursday: I worked from the moment I woke up until when I dragged myself to bed early that night. Lots of various projects to work on for a few different classrooms and I was determined to get them done and out of way. It's yearbook time, there's standardized testing all of next week, and we're in the final stretch for the school year. Tensions are running high.

Friday: I had a rough day and did some of my social media assignment when I got home. Been trucking away at my Project Life 2012 and am well into the autumn season. We ran some errands that day too.

Saturday: The SO and I went out to lunch as an early celebration of our fifth anniversary of dating. It really does not seem like that much time has passed and we were both avoiding talking about how different we had imagined our lives by this point. It's disappointing, but there's not much use in griping about it. We'll continue to figure things out in the real world while daydreaming about our dream lives.

I attended a Project Astro picnic with FMIL across town. It was a few hours long but really fun. It's a partnership program between local teachers and astronomers and there was much fun to be had. We learned a few interesting things that we hope to bring to our school next year and saw some amazing celestial bodies during a one-hour Messier scavenger hunt. Telescopes were set up in the field and the random teams had to find as many objects as possible from different tickets. Nerdy fun is the best kind of fun.

At the very beginning, we found ourselves literally in the middle of a dust devil that tore up one of the tents and carried tons of the informative paper work and flyers at least 50 feet into the air. We saw it coming our way minutes before it hit and I couldn't do much more besides cover the top of my drink and sidestep behind the pavilion column and close my eyes. I just have a light scratch on my hand from some of the debris. We couldn't recover any of the papers, they were probably dropped off into a small rushing river once the dust devil hit the dense desert brush.

Welcome to the desert, where even the air is trying to kill you.

An exaggeration, but you get the idea. Sigh. It was kind of cool if it weren't so much of a bummer to the enthusiastic and kind astronomers present.

Sunday: The SO and I stayed up all night having in depth discussions about the future of humanity, the present state of things around the world, renewable energy, our lives, the crud in our lives, our personal future plans, the human psyche, and so much more.

It was intense, had its ups and downs, but I am ever grateful that we have the right kind of patience and thoughtfulness with each other to have such discussions. I appreciate being in a relationship that challenges me on a mental, physical, and spiritual level. All the other ones too. There are way too many to list, lol.

We're some of the lucky ones.

In other positive news, I'm part way through December 2012 with my Project Life and feel that my next step will be tackling 2010-2011 after. I do not have nearly as much documentation, memorabilia, or photos from those two years, but will do the best I can to get as much recorded as possible. Or at least something recorded. Something is better than nothing! :)

Trying really hard to change my attitude. I have been full of anger for several months now, as continuously recorded in this blog. That's not the person I am or want to be. At least, not anymore. I need to get back to where I was at my highest, so as to continuing growing as a person from there.

Just to share a song that's been stuck in my head, among other ones:

Wednesday, April 10

Being Consistent

I'm trying to get started with garden journaling on and as many reviews that I've read about it being great (and many about it being user-friendly), I'm struggling.

Monday: It was an extremely windy day and I felt bad for any kid that ventured outside and got blasted in the face with the pollen and dust. It was awful. I got home late that day and decided to plant a green bell pepper and zucchini that I had gotten from a co-worker. I merely chopped them into bit and stuck them into the dirt because I still have little to no idea what I am doing and the internet's answers were not coming quickly enough.

I also re-sowed... well, I'll just show you the vlog. :P

Tuesday: Pretty tired, worked only a tiny bit on Project Life despite thinking about it all day long and mostly zoned out to my YouTube subscriptions and watching the SO play some video games.

Wednesday: Back to what I had mentioned before, here's were the confusion is happening:

There doesn't seem to be a "Getting Started" tutorial, the Help section isn't well organized, and I'm a bit overwhelmed with how to get my plants entered in. I just wanted somewhere else to dump my plant-parenting mild obsession into and I don't have a smart phone that could track progress with a simple app. Oh, the havoc I would wreak.

I wonder where my energy has gone, it hasn't been a particularly rough week at work, but I guess my sleep has been broken.

Have I mentioned that I'm using an old spare keyboard plugged into my laptop right now? It's like we're slowly but surely adding enough stuff to make a different computer. Sigh. I love this thing though. It's nothing special, but I love the feel and even the sound that it makes. I am a pretty big nerd-dork.

Sunday, April 7

Doing It!

Made this weekend about me (or rather the stuff that I want to do for myself) because I was feeling too cruddy to help anyone else. Killing two birds with one stone while resting up. Big update coming up because I haven't addressed it this week.

Monday: Jeez, it's April now. Gotta get back on track for the goals I wanted to accomplish this year. I took some kids I was babysitting to the movies and saw "Wreck-It-Ralph" and loved the junk out of it!

Afterwards, I sent a care package to my best friend and one to my cousins containing a physical copy of the infamous FL scrapbook. Wrapped up the evening by helping another friend convert an old office into a bedroom for one of her sons. It was the last day of Spring Break.

Tuesday: School started again that is what it is. We got the car back from the shop and of course there's a laundry list of issues to prioritize and address. I got to catch up with my brother and my mom and that was great as usual.

I am really looking forward to visiting this summer and those plans are starting to come together. I'm diligently working little by little on my Project Life. I'm on May 2012 right now and it's an extensive set of pages because that involved my last trip to Florida.

Wednesday: I wrote about what happened the day of, so you can check that out. : )

Thursday: Got home late from work, so I was mentally worn out. Caught up on YouTube subscriptions and tried out POP Pilates by Blogilates. Barely made it through the first few seconds without quivering, but getting into shape is something I'd like to start tackling. My middle is feeling way too squishy for comfort now and I have little to no upper body strength anymore. It's gotten pathetic.

Friday: During errands today, I ended up buying a new yoga mat. My original one is back in Florida and this one came with a foam brick, belt, and DVD for beginners like me. After trying to use a beach towel on the floor last night, this sounded like a much better idea. At least I know how to work on doing power (aerobic) yoga and can start there.

Saturday: I'm all about watching a video game streamer, Lethal Frag do his weekly cooking broadcast right now. Once I'm feeling better again, I'm going to practice more basic cooking skills again. The household's pantry areas are getting a little out of hand and nothing is being used because it cannot be easily found under the rubble.

Sunday: It's nice to listen to that for future motivation and Hank & Katherine Green (Vlogbrothers) play Super Mario Bros. for the Wii while steadily working on my Project Life. I'm happy to report that I'm already working on August 2012! That's the third quarter of the year and so close! I'm squealing and screaming with delight. Just so proud of myself.

I was feeling super discouraged by what I felt was not enough progress, but realized that I'm moving much faster with this scrapbook to date. A ton of time is being covered in a relatively short amount of time and that's something great! I'll be working on previous years in no time!

Oh wait, that suddenly doesn't sound like a good thing, lol.

Self, it is a good thing because you want to get as many memories as possible recorded. Then, you'll probably feel comfortable scrapbooking about the current year.

I can feel my anxiety rising. :P

Saturday, April 6

Garden Vlog: Springtime

I knew that it had been a while since my last garden vlog. (Holy cow, September!) I took one during the winter but never ended up uploading it, I guess, because it was just all too depressing in the garden. So, here's a "bonus" post because I can never resist posting about my garden once I take pictures or videos of it.

I think once we're in our own place, I'll start more seedlings indoors over the winter. That way, I'll have some sweet little green leaves to bring a smile to our faces during the cold weather, plus they would hopefully have a good head start for when it's time for them to go into their "forever" homes. Just imagining it is calming in its own way.

I took this footage two days ago, when I went to water this morning, the jalapeno plants have been completely devoured as well as the pea plant. Of friggin' course. At least I went through and did the worst wedding job ever in my garden. The ground was dry and hard, was working with one glove, and I was cranky at other stuff and taking it out on those weeds. :P

Wednesday, April 3

One Last Farewell

I didn't have the energy to be angry, angsty, or surly today. None of it matter because all I wanted to do was to quietly respect a little girl's memory. It was very grounding to remember that as much junk we deal with on a daily basis, as one Buddhist friend said recently: "It is all just temporary."

There was a staff meeting after school and I got some computer work done for the first time in a few weeks. Then, we came home and solemnly got ready to leave for the viewing. Neither of us felt we would be able to to handle seeing her like this.

Didn't think there was any point in putting on makeup because I knew I'd just cry it off anyways, but I remembered dressing up one day to visit Paige outside of school and her letting me know that she thought I looked nice. Her mom also requested no black clothing, come as colorful as possible because she always loved color.

I wore the top that FMIL got me for Christmas with Minnie Mouse on it. For her Make-A-Wish, Paige had gone to Disney World (her first time on a plane) right after she turned five. They brought back pins for her teachers. I remembered meeting those teachers while they had their pins on (which was everyday).

It took me twice as long to get ready because I kept starting to cry because it kept hitting me what I was getting ready to go do and possibly see. My heart just keeps weeping.

We went with my SIL too just saw Paige's mom immediately. We hugged and cried a little and she looked beautifully pregnant, brave, and strong. I loved seeing the bright colors on everyone. There were conservative looking cowboys and crazy punk rockers who were torn between crying out their broken hearts and laughing while they recounted wonderful memories of this beautiful little girl. It reminded me that there's a common thread in everyone that is just purely good.

They had posters filled with fun pictures and sparkles, people brought potted plants (another one of her favorites versus just cut flowers, she was a fan of gardening), and there was a slideshow playing on the front wall of beautiful pictures with her family throughout her life. That helped so much because it made us laugh and focus on what has been important the entire time.

We did go and see her. I'm glad with the choices that were made. I won't go into too much more detail here to keep this from being so morbid. I really appreciate the loving attention to detail that the funeral home did. They had a locked chest for memories we could write on stationery, programs handed out, everything was just so accommodating of this unique little life. One thing I really appreciate is the permanent website memorial that they set up. There are pictures and memories and songs there... It will be nice to revisit.

FMIL, SIL, and I went out to dinner across the way afterwards to talk more about our memories and life in general right now. We'll continue to visit the family and stay friends, of course. I spent the evening saving pictures from Facebook because FMIL and I felt it would be nice to have a keepsake like that of our own at the house. Gonna go sleep some sadness off or something.
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