A Much Needed Day Off…

I have the day off today and I have to say that I am almost as excited about it as a little kid on Christmas morning. I slept in a bit this morning, which was really nice. I’d probably still be sleeping if my wonderful Mr. Achilles hadn’t come lay on top of me and kissed my face off. I love that little dog.

Mr. Achilles

Mr. Achilles

I have a grand day planned. It includes a shower (desperately needed), dishes (also desperately needed), possibly go get my hair trimmed, and paint my toe nails ( I wore my flip-flops yesterday!). These things are all planned to get done as I get to them, so there may be things I just don’t get to (other than the shower and dishes. they are a must). I’m going to let my mood lead me through this day. If I don’t feel like doing something, I’m not going to. My little act of rebellion.

I hit a point, yesterday, while I was cleaning, where I felt really upset. I found myself heading toward sabotage. I wanted to just walk out of the clean and tell Cayle “Sorry. I just can’t do this any more. Thanks for everything.” There are a multitude of reasons this didn’t and shouldn’t happen. Probably the biggest reason is it’s just not who I am these days.

Despite how discontent I am with work and how much I don’t like the way Cayle runs his business (I would assume most wouldn’t think anything of it. I have too many opinions sometimes), he has been there for me when I have really needed help, like whenever I’ve had a vehicle give up the race. I also find Cayle to be comfortable to talk with, and he apparently finds the same to be true about me, since we have talked about things that don’t necessarily have anything to do about work. There have been times at the end of a conversation he has thrown out “Thanks for the therapy session!”

Most of all, I have more respect for myself than to act so irresponsibly. Not only would it be acting completely without integrity to just walk out, I also don’t have any other money coming in and it would put me in a real pickle to just quit. I like knowing how I’m going to pay rent, the bills, eat.

What this all boils down to is I am starting to feel some mental instability happening. I know Spring is just around the corner (19 days) and that has an effect on the bipolar mind, but its more than that. I’m over stressed by work, the goings on in my family unit, most everything. I need to slow down a bit or I fear I will just crash. I guess one of the things I should be working on today is writing Cayle an email about hiring another team for the South Sound area so I am not the only one down here, and I can start doing this part-time.

Being so sick this week and not being able to take a day or two off to get well tells me it is definitely time for Cayle to hire a second team down here. Yes, this is going to cut into my income, but I feel that’s better than running myself into the ground which would result in no income. I think Cayle will be ok with this. I guess I’ll find out soon enough.

Creatively Blocked, Time for a Filter Change, and Autumn Beauty Sprouts…

I am feeling completely creatively blocked these last few days. I know this is because I’m tired, there has been what feels like a lot going on, and I’ve been sick. No time to refuel the soul, which also feeds the creativity. I have tomorrow off and I am going to attempt to spend it doing only the things I love to do instead of chores. I need the me time.

We all know how much I love my audiobooks. Lately, I haven’t been able to get into them. I’ve been trying to listen to Men, Women, and Worthiness by Brene Brown but I find my mind wandering too much to actually pay a whole lot of attention to what is streaming through my ears. Where my mind is wandering off to isn’t such a great place, either. Too much of the negativity is getting through the filtering system. Wouldn’t it be great if you could change the filter in your mind when it starts to fail, just like you change the filter in your furnace or the water filter in your fridge? Sigh…in a perfect world.

I was beginning to wonder if my Autumn Beauty sunflower seeds were ever going to sprout. I came home yesterday to this (sorry for the blurriness):

Autumn Beauty Sprouts 02/15

Autumn Beauty Sprouts 02/15

It’s amazing how easily this makes me smile. All my sprouts do. I don’t just see the sprouts. In my mind, the image of the full-grown plant, sitting in the spot I will end up planting it, immediately comes up. It’s like finding that one piece of the puzzle you have been searching for, or watching a 3D printer print. (They have these for sale at Home Depot now for $999!)

NOAA.gov forecasts frosty weather every night between now and Thursday. Winter is doing its best to hold on as long as it can. I’ll be covering and uncovering my tulips and hollyhocks (and the other bulbs/roots coming up) every night and morning. I’m grateful for these little troopers. Despite the freezing temps at night, they continue to grow at a rather swift pace, reinforcing that Spring has sent the memo she is on her way, and not a moment too soon. Have I mentioned how excited I am about this? ;-)

Sunflowers, More Sunflowers, and Borage…Oh My!

My Mammoth Sunflowers 02/15

My Mammoth Sunflowers 02/15


Velvet Queen Sunflowers 02/15

Velvet Queen Sunflowers 02/15


Borage 02/15

Borage 02/15

This second round of seeds is doing really well!! And the first round is surprising me with new sprouts now that I am moderately neglecting them. I guess that’s what they needed. Who knew?

Just Checking In…

I’m overwhelmed this morning. I’m trying to breathe, but its a bit hard, at the moment. I have a 3 bedroom, 2 bath unit and a 1 bedroom, 1 bath unit to clean today. I know how long these usually take when I have someone cleaning with me. Since I am alone, I have to double that projected time frame. I should be home somewhere between dinnertime and bedtime, closer to bedtime. Thankfully, I am almost over this cold flu thing.

Almost all of my Mammoth Sunflower seeds have sprouted. That’s 24 Mammoth Sunflowers. It makes me smile. The seeds that I have in my daughter’s fifth wheel are doing much better now, too. I thought I had lost all of my Comfrey seeds to overwatering but now I have two Comfrey seedlings. YAY! My Wild Bergamot is sprouting too. Most of the Feverfew had sprouted and died, but I have new seedlings of that, as well. The Munstead Lavender sprouts that had come up have a few remaining sprouts that have survived and they are doing quite well.

I transplanted my Vanilla Ice Sunflower sprouts into bigger ‘pots’ yesterday. I used water bottles as my bigger ‘pots.’ The Romas that I transplanted have had a bunch of the transplants wither at this point. Its sad, but at least I haven’t lost them all. I didn’t separate any of the Vanilla Ice Sunflower sprouts, except for the ones that fell apart during the transplanting process, yesterday. We shall see how they fare.

I have to go get ready to head to work. The sooner I get started, the sooner I can get back home. I have to go uncover my tulips and hollyhocks so I don’t burn them in the sun with their water and soda bottle covers on. I hope everyone has a great day!!!

What Are You Saying, Universe?

I feel like the Universe is trying to tell me something. I’m not sure what, exactly, it is trying to say, but…well, things keep happening, in regard to work, that make me think the Universe is trying to tell me to move on. The biggest problem I have with that is I have no idea what it is I am supposed to do and there are a million and a half different emotions swirling through my head about it.

So, here is what has been going on. There have been scheduling difficulties with work that just seem to be so…unnecessary. I really don’t know how to describe it better than that. Maybe its more just a feeling about it but the end feeling is the same, either way: Something is amiss in the work camp zone. Then I had a few days scheduled off that quickly were filled with jobs that didn’t come through the guy I’ve been working with. This was great. More money, less work, no drama.

Then, yesterday, I wake up and I know I am completely sick. I go to work anyway, because that is how I am. If I can get up, I can go to work. The common area clean at the condo complex is what was scheduled for yesterday (every Monday), and I made it through almost all of the buildings scheduled for this week when it became clear that I needed to go home and crawl in bed. Sick had won the battle.

My daughter had gone to a friend’s house on Thursday for a few days. She was supposed to come home Sunday, but texted me she would be home Monday instead. The reason she gave was kind of bogus, but whatever. After I came home, yesterday, and rested for a bit, I texted her, asking her what her plan was since I hadn’t heard from her and it was already midafternoon. She informs me she is getting a ride down here later to grab some stuff.

The alarm bells rang. Get some stuff? That sounds like she is going back up to her friends, but we have a lot of work scheduled this week. I ask her what she means. She tells me she has an interview with Starbucks on Wednesday. Shock steps in, seeing an opening it may be able to take advantage of. I ask her how that is going to work, since the Starbucks she has an interview at is around 50 miles away from here. Is she planning on moving in with her friend? Her response: Yeah, kinda. All I could say was “Oh. Ok.” Everything else seemed pointless to say.

There are a bunch of things I want to say to her about her leaving without notice but, for the most part, I know they will fall on deaf ears. I did let her know that she is kind of screwing me by leaving without giving me enough time to get things re-organized on this end with work. What else can I say? No, you can’t do that? She is 24 years old. She is going to do whatever she wants to do. Anything else I would have to say will only end up with us arguing and I am just done with arguing with people. It’s just not worth it. I wish her the best of luck and her trailer is here if she needs it. I just won’t have her work with me, again, because she has shown me that I can not rely on her.

Now, I have to figure out work. The challenges that are starting to crop up between work going smoothly and me are becoming too much. I am all to aware that life throws up challenges to forward movement sometimes, and one just has to navigate through them to the best of their abilities, but I think I would rather be facing such challenges with something that would better benefit me in the long run. Something like getting the curb painting business headed toward success. Or starting my own cleaning business. Or…writing a book and getting it published. It just feels like, if I am going to have to fight to keep things moving forward, I might as well be doing that with something I want to do instead of something I am looking at as temporary, like move out cleans.

But, I think I am still reeling from the newest development and need a little more time to process that before any major leaps in a different direction. It seems like the right time to change things if I’m going to, though.

Blurred Days…

Have you ever had a series of days that seemed to be just one long, weird, exhausting day? That has been me for the last few days. I did my clean on Friday, which turned out to be an 8 hour clean instead of the project 4 I had been told. No worries. More money. Biggest downside was not getting home until super late.

Yesterday, I had the day off. Well, off from my jobs that pay me money. I did laundry, went to the Y to shower, stopped at the library to pick up a book I’ve had on hold for quite a while now, went grocery shopping. I then transplanted my Roma tomatoes. They don’t seem worse for wear today, so I am guessing they handled the move just fine. Whew! Out of twelve seed pods, I managed to transplant 17 Roma plants, with some of the transplants still having more than one plant in its pot. I lost the light to separate them so decided that could wait until later.

I never did cover my Hollyhock and Tulips yesterday. Some days, 24 hours just isn’t enough. Anyway, I woke up to the grass almost looking as if it had snow on it. Damn. I have everything covered, now, and, honestly, nothing looked to be suffering. Another “Whew!”

I had a clean today (6.5 hours x 2) that was 40 minutes away. This was another clean that wasn’t through Cayle. It actually came through my Bestest Friend in the Whole Wide World: Cornelia (I’ve always called her Corny. She doesn’t mind as long as it’s not in a business setting. That took some time to get used to when I had to). It was a client I had cleaned for before, back when I was doing regular house cleaning with Corny (she has her own business). I have to say that, after having these two cleans of my own, not through Cayle, I like regular house cleaning better, and without someone I have to check in with, like a boss. It definitely has me thinking a bit.

This week is packed full. I am not ready to do anything about it, exactly, but I don’t think I can really keep doing this job for much longer. I know it might sound…childish?…but I find that having a boss like figure, one that doesn’t have my back when it comes to backing me on a job especially, causes me stress. I think I’ve always known that, in some fashion, but it is becoming quite crystal clear to me, lately.

I’m still questioning myself on why that is and if I am just being juvenile. I’ve almost always worked doing my own thing, or close enough to it to not notice. I’ve tried “real” jobs, with an employer/boss, and never really got comfortable with it. In fact, just the opposite. I shouldn’t dread going to work, I think. I know that is what a whole lot of the population does, but…I don’t know. I’ll have to get back to you on that one. As you can plainly tell, I haven’t quite worked this all out, yet.

And, tomorrow is Monday. YAAAAAAAY! :-) And did I mention I have the stupid cold/flu thing that is going around? Yes, I am a very blessed girl. :-D

A Working Day Off, My Puppies, and Looking Toward Tomorrow…

I have the day off today. This would usually be a yay moment, but we have scheduled some cleaning work of our own through a friend. That, in its own way, is a yay moment, though I’m not feeling very much like yay about it.

I’m tired, a bit burnt out, and really wanting/needing some down time, home time. This clean shouldn’t take too long, about 4-ish hours, which means I should be home relatively early. Before dinner time, at least, which hasn’t been happening lately. It’s really hard to stay motivated when it feel like all I’m doing is getting up, going to work, coming home, making/eating dinner, then watching a show or two because there is no energy left for anything else. This also makes me even more grateful for this time I have/take in the morning to write my Creating Miracles list and blog post. I just get to be me for an hour or so in the morning. YAY!

Birthday Boys

Birthday Boys

Those two light saber wielding boys above, Achilles and Enzo, are three years old today! Time goes by so fast. In some ways, it doesn’t seem so long ago that they fit in my hand. I love these two. They are so much fun and make me laugh with their antics. I am truly grateful for them.

Tomorrow and Sunday are days off for me, and I have scheduled nothing else to fill that time. Well, other than re-planting seeds, transplanting seedlings, and possibly renting a rototiller. I say possibly on the rototiller because I’m going to see how I’m feeling and if I’m up to manhandling the beast.

I’m also going to be looking up how much it costs to have dirt delivered. The soil here is mostly rocks so rototilling my garden plot will be challenging, at best, but I still think it’s a possibility. Having dirt delivered would just provide me with some richer soil and make it so I wouldn’t have to rake out quite as many rocks. I’m liking that idea but we shall see if I can budget in the dirt. If not, I’ll be needing a really good pair of gloves (I’m going to need those anyway) and prepare to have blisters on my hands, regardless. As tired as I am this morning, I wish fairies would come along during the night and do the work for me. :)

I also need to get t-shirts made for Curb Addresses Save Lives. The season is approaching and we need to be ready. A friend of mine said I should include parking lot painting to the business, to help supplement its income. I’m giving this some thought. I don’t think it is a bad idea, I just really know nothing about parking lot painting. Mostly, I have no idea on the pricing part of it. I’m going to need to do some research, it seems.

I would need to get a pressure washer, I think. I would probably need to start out with just renting one, in the beginning. I have been kind of thinking it wouldn’t be such a bad plan to have a pressure washer for the business anyway. I’m going to HOA’s with the curb painting and could have pressure washing the curb before applying the address as part of the service to help the addresses last longer. This would add time to the process since the curb would have to thoroughly dry before I could add the address, but I think I’m ok with that. If we aren’t having to go door to door to sell our service, then we have more than enough time for pressure washing and dry time, I believe. It’s a thought.

Anyway, I had better get going. I need to leave soon and there are some things I need to do here before taking off. I hope everyone has a most amazing day!!!

Seed Sprouts and Frost-bitten Tulips and Hollyhock…

I had another hot pepper plant sprout. I have no idea what peppers these will be because they came in a blend packet without separation or designation. I kind of like that, though. Sort of getting an added surprise to the growing process. These guys are growing in egg crates, which have not shown any sign of molding. YAY! This means that they should do just fine, I think.

I also had three Dill sprouts poke through the soil and a Rosemary! These, unfortunately, are in the 36 celled seed starter flats, which are the ones that are molding. I will need to transplant those this weekend so they do not begin to fail. Almost all of the lavender sprouts are gone, along with my basil. They basil failing is a bit of a surprise because it is in a little steel pot. I guess I may be being a bit over zealous with the watering. What can I say? I’m really excited and anxious for Spring to get here and to get my garden going.

The seed starting medium is a little…weird. I don’t usually use seed starter soil, but decided to give it a shot this year. Couldn’t hurt, right? Well, apparently it can. It will look really dry, rather quickly, so I water. I am guessing that it really isn’t as dry as it looks, so I’m overwatering, thinking I’m just keeping things moist for my little seeds. Live and learn.

Last night, I checked the seeds that I planted the day before yesterday to see if they needed water. Some of the soil looked a little dry, so I pressed my finger gently into it. Not really all that dry. Hmmm… This is definitely a learning process. I don’t want to let the soil get too dry or my seeds won’t sprout or will begin to sprout and then dry out and die. I’m probably way over-thinking this, but with the heart-break of the first round of sprouts starting out great and then just laying down, I really want to get this right. I can see my garden in my mind, what it is going to look like in full growth, and it would be heartbreaking to not be able to replicate that mental image in reality.

One of the mental images the really has me going right now is the row of sunflowers along the fence line. I have around 6 different varieties of sunflower that I plan to plant there, from Mammoth Sunflowers, which get to be around 12 feet tall, to Velvet Queen, which grows to be around 5 feet tall and produce a deep red, velvet flower with a warm chocolate-brown center; Autumn Beautys, which get around 6 feet tall and look like they sound like they would, producing flowers with yellow, copper-red, and purple-red petals. Every time I look at the fence line that separated us from the street, I can see all of the sunflowers in their varying heights and colors, standing proudly, showing off their beauty. Its going to be great!!!

I am going to need to cover my tulips and my hollyhock. We have had a light frost two nights in a row with about 4 more nights forecasted this week. So far, these plants look to be fairing pretty well despite being frosted a couple of times. I think four nights of frosting in a row, with some of the night temps getting as low as the mid-20’s, will definitely be too much for them. My plan is to make some canopies out of plastic and some stakes so the frost can’t touch then. I’m so grateful that Spring is only 29 days away, which means nights of frost are quickly heading out the door. Shorts and flip-flops aren’t far behind!!

Seed Start Over…

Starting Over 2/17

Starting Over 2/17

So I started replanting seeds yesterday. I’m grateful I hadn’t used up all the seeds I had put together. The one seed I can’t start over at this point is the Comfrey. I’m out of those, but this just means I will have to order some more when I order some catnip seeds. I did plant some more of my catnip seeds to see if they have better success this time. Almost all of my Munstead Lavender seedlings have given up, along with my most of my basil. I really wish I knew what was going on so I could fix the problems my little seedlings are having but I don’t have a clue. Well, other than the underside of the seeds cells have gotten fuzzy. I have never had such a hard time getting plants to grow and thrive, with the exception of Purple Ruffles basil. I’ve changed things up a bit with this new batch of seeds, though. The egg crates I used for the first round seem to be doing great with no issues so I used more of those for this round. I also have cut a bunch of water bottles in half and planted seeds in them, and will also be attempting to transplant the seedlings that haven’t given up, yet. Its going to be a little bit challenging to transplant these seedlings without disturbing their soil very much but I think I can do it. This has all been a bit frustrating, and heart breaking, but I am determined to have a garden this year and am not giving up. This is happening.