Thursday, March 26, 2015

winter hangover

Winter left for a week or so, then returned apparently because She realized She left something behind. That something is my sanity. She's decided to stay a few more days just to make sure she gets all of it - my sanity, my spirit, my good mood. I feel like I can tolerate winter a few more days if only I didn't feel so hungover.

Hungover is exactly how I feel right now. That morning after feeling of did I really do that? Did I really put on those pounds? Did I really hand out business cards with my blog address on it? Did I really let my house go to the dumps? Did I really share all those raw, vulnerable feelings on my blog? Did I really waste away the season with not a word written on my other writing project? Did my baby really turn five-years-old? I blame winter. The way She teased away for a few days tempting me to pull out my warm weather dresses - the ones that don't fit any more. Everything from there went downhill.

Yet the advantage of hitting the bottom of the hill is that I have a better view of how to get back to the top. Truthfully that Spring tease hasn't left me totally deflated. The warm weather is coming soon to this region, for real this time. I do have things to look forward to and I'm seeking out those tiny things that give me momentum which includes a brief look back (in list form) at this last winter.

1. I finally got a dutch oven and I'm wondering why I never did this before. Oh wait. I did buy one for the campfire but hubby dearest busted the lid before I was able to use it. Now I have a pretty blue one. The only tough part is not knowing where to store it in my little kitchen.

2. A double-edged sword: My daughter turned five and now life with her is full of magic.

3. I reconnected with an old friend, a friend that was a friend before I met Dave. Now the three of us go out together every once and a while which totally takes the pressure off of making sure date night is fun. Because she's fun and adding a third makes for good conversation that goes beyond potties and mermaids and kindergartens. (Let's not think right now about the fact the favorite sitter is going away to college this Fall.)

4. I didn't once think about spring planting because the kid took care of all that. Now we have a million different seeds.

5. I developed a closer relationship with the mother of my daughter's friend who is an expert knitter, who also taught me not to shy away from frogging (tinking?) my projects. Something that has transformed into value for virtually every aspect of my life.

6. I finally cleaned my house and soon all the windows will be open.

7. In the last month of winter my little family picked up archery as a hobby. I look forward to no longer losing arrows in the snow.

8. I found my groove chopping wood. I love that! And the fact that my husband bought me an axe for Christmas.

9. I read a bunch of really great books. The most recent one was Donna Tartt's Secret History where I wasn't shocked to read that the twins were having sex. Thanks, Game of Thrones.

10. I am a hardy (and hearty) kind of gal! I really don't mind the cold and snow, unless of course it comes in March.

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Tuesday, March 24, 2015

the right name

Want to waste some time on the internet? Check out the meaning of your name and see how true it is. I loved how there were names listed from all over the world. The little one's name is Greek and I found it, then while reading I was continuously nodding my head. One of the things that was mentioned was to put an instrument in her hands at an early age. This is her second ukulele and a much better quality. That means both of parents can rock out on it, too!

I almost titled this post "daddy's girl" because I've seen her daddy make that exact same face while capturing an image of that exact same pose. The ukulele was a bit more than what I wanted spend for a 5-year-old but once she got her hands on it she wouldn't let go.

I know: spoiled could be a term used here. But I would much rather have her spend hours on the instrument than on television.

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Monday, March 23, 2015

Spring re-start

The photos of the little one are from a few weeks ago but they represent to me a shift in my perspective. I've been down on my photography lately but then I came to realize that the mood may have been just a symptom of winter. In the days after the snow melted I got a photographic boost.

Spring is a great time to start the year again, isn't it? I'm so glad I didn't try another 365 project beginning January 1st. By the time the snow melted in previous years I was already burned out with taking monotonous winter photos. I avoided all that this year which is what I credit for avoiding winter depression.

I think we're mostly on to the good stuff, the warm weather and all. Bu you wouldn't know it by looking at what dumped on us last night. No worries in my heart because I know it will be gone by this afternoon.

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Friday, March 20, 2015

Epic Swing

Taking some random rope, a plank and a tall tree to make a swing is a fine example of jugaad.This innovation kept us at the 4-acre woods for at least two hours longer than planned. You can tell in the photos that she is thoroughly enjoying this flight through the trees.

After returning to the city I was able to appreciate the fun of all of this. But in the moment my heart was thumping through a couple of pounding emotions. Joy because the sound of her hearty belly laughs sparkled in the trees like the finest sound my ears had ever heard. Fear because (come on!) she's a 5-year-old swinging super high on a home-made swing. The only way for me to overcome these conflicting emotions was to pull out my camera and focus on capturing some images. Granted it is not the best way to be in the moment (I constantly struggle with that) but it was sufficient distraction necessary to let her enjoy the swing.

We aren't planning to head out to the woods this weekend because D's Jeep in for some body work, but there is already talk of going up for the day just to enjoy the swing. I considered changing my Saturday plans from going with them to attending a co-op conference with my collegues just so I didn't have to feel the heart-pounding again. But this tears me up, too. I feel I need to be there to prevent major injury, not that I'm much help in these sorts of situations.

Why me? Because he's the "fun parent" and I'm...not.

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Monday, March 16, 2015

epic March weekend

What is this?

The days seem longer, they are certainly warmer on the 14th day of March. Saturday afternoon we arrived at the 4-acre woods. Everything was brown and soggy, smelling of damp leaves and mud, emerging buds and pools of snow melt. It was soupy by the firepit. Arrows were shot onto wood target pieces (14 daddy, 12 moog). The darkest part of dusk didn't leave the skies until 8pm. Slow dancing to Indian Love Song, our boots squishing in the mud, a soft sloshing sound with each step. Glancing up at his face, my eyes are drawn to the bright stars up above, witnesses to our love and my crappy dancing ability.

It was a truly epic March weekend. We found things which had been buried in the snow, weird alien-like pods (see photo #4), and a fox hole. The chalk came out, the swing went up. The only gloves I wore all weekend were work gloves.

She has the right bow now and hopefully she's start to love using it as much as she loves wearing it on her back. We plan to set up little targets all over our woods. Dave and I are feeling like we need our own bows already. I'm looking for a long bow while he's planning on sticking to a recurve. Both of which are surprisingly hard to find in Wisconsin, apparently they are "too old-fashioned" but then we were searching through a region full of bow hunters who need extra power. Last week I  nearly gave myself a black eye, this week my left arm is painfully sore (extra power I do not need). One of the tutorials we found online actually says to build muscles up at the gym.

Everyday there seems to be a sign to go to the gym, everyday I find an excuse not to go to the gym. Today's excuse: I dont wanna!)

The only downside is that our little refrigerator is no longer working. Each week I think it will just magically start again (leveled the trailer, cleaned out the vent, etc) but no. Since we are considering a complete remodel, we've decided to start with the fridge. It terrifies me to think how junky (mouse poopy) it will be behind the fridge. But we need one. Why?

Because the seasons are changing and the region is getting warmer. And something has to cool down my beer!

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