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The Nano Poblano Oddly Specific Gratitude Blog Hop

The Nano Poblano Oddly Specific Gratitude Blog Hop

Thanks Kim at Drunk on Life for tagging me to continue this rather impressive list of gratefulness.  I’m happy to have discovered so many new blogging friends, especially the ones who are drunk on life.  There is no better way to be.

Here are the rules:

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  1. Add to the list with your own oddly specific bits of gratitude. Add as few or as many things as you’d like. Include a picture or two if you’d like… but you certainly don’t have to. Put your name at the top of the list to see where yours started and the next blogger’s begins.
  2. Tag the post with the usual pepper tags and oddly specific gratitude. 
  3. Tag another pepper to add to the list by linking to their About page, but there’s a catch! When you tag the next blogger, be sure to include a bit about why you’re grateful to be in the same blogging world with them.:) (Try not to tag anyone who has already been tagged that way more people get to join in the fun.)  The List of Oddly Specific Gratitude

Nerd in the Brain:

1. the smell of wild onions when I mow the lawn
2. coffee makers (having the coffee already prepared in the mornings is magical)
3. the way my crazy dog barks likes a vicious beast at the horses across the road, but then cowers behind me like a needy wimp whenever a horse actually comes close
4. hearing my husband talk on the phone to the rest of his team at work… it reminds me that he’s not just my silly, sweet, awesome husband… he’s also my competent, responsible, highly skilled husband
5. opening a blank lesson plan book and imagining the possibilities to come
6. sausage balls
7. watching Grace’s enthusiasm for all things musical
8. the way I can hear a smile on Olivia’s face whenever we say hello or goodbye on the phone
9. knitting with really soft, squishy yarn

Not a Punk Rocker

10. Getting a random text when Matthew is in cell-signal range. (“Hi”)
11. Awesome stuff in the mail, including Legos and letters from friends, making me smile when I need it the most at the end of a long day.
12. Cherry chapstick.
13. Somebody found my blog by searching for “deadpool talks about political social issues” yesterday.
14. Skype and chat for keeping me in touch with friends in “real-time” when one or the other of us needs it the most.
15. Finding new blogs to read and follow through this challenge!

Jackie P (tobreathistowrite)

16. Having friends like I do here in the blogging world. You all make my days brighter.
17. My dog Sam. He loves me unconditionally, wish more people could love like that. Plus, he makes me laugh daily.
18.Coffee. Without it the world would be a much sadder and thirsty place. And I would be a much harder person to deal with.
19. All the bright and cheerful colors around. Something about bright colors makes me happy. The gold of the sun, the cerulean blue of the sky, the wonder of a rainbow, they never cease to make me glad I’m alive.
20. Books…… you all know what I mean.

Fish of Gold

21. Spell check. Even though it did just strangely try to correct my horribly botched spelling of “another” to “Antoine.” I don’t even know anyone named Antoine, spell check.
22. I’m grateful to myself for being the sucker who couldn’t walk away from my dog’s cage at the animal rescue. My failure to do so has converted 70 dog pounds into a metric ton of joy and unconditional love.
23. Male’s hilariously failed attempts at sexting.
24. My sense of humor. I wouldn’t have survived this long without it.
25. To the Peppers for continuing my harebrained Nano Poblano Blog Hop Story idea and turning it into something unexpectedly awesome. Go Team Pepper
26.I also second #18.

Knocked Over by a Feather

27. My aunts Oreo truffles. They are addictive.
28. Finding my comfy spot in bed.
29. Receiving a spontaneous real hug from my daughter, which rarely happens.
30. Watching stupid TV with my husband.
31. Hearing my mom call me sweetie or something similarly saccharine sweet on the phone

Mental Mama ( Mental in the Midwest)

32. the world’s best tiny mommy
33. Evie and Sissy Cats
34. lithium, depakote, and gabapentin
35. the world’s most amazing support network
36. good dark chocolate, preferably with cherries
37. the jumbo margaritas at Romeo’s – lime, on the rocks, extra salt

Mark Bialczak

38. My dear wife Karen for buying me two season tickets for Syracuse University football six years ago, going to every game with me (but one when she went on a cruise) since and turning home game Saturdays into Happy Happy days win or lose. 39. That Ellie B aka Dogamous Pyle usually looks like this on the end of the living room couch and her specially covered ottoman daily come 10 p.m. after a day of enthusiastically ruling our Syracuse city home we call Little Bitty

Ellie B

40. That Karen talked me into going to the Paws for the Cause rescue dog event that March day four years ago when we saw Ellie marching around in her orange “Adopt Me” vest.
41.That my daughter Elisabeth was smart enough and confident enough and brave enough to go back to school this fall to get her associate’s degree and New York State certificate to become a physical therapist’s assistant, 2 1/2 years after getting her bachelor’s in biology.
42. That writing every day on markbialczak.com since Oct. 27, 2013 has turned out to be so much fun.
43.That Sheena Not a Punk Rocker talked me into hosting Nano Poblano this year, allowing me to meet so many interesting new bloggers! Wait. I want to add two more exclamation points to this one!!

Coulddoworse (Rachel or Lundygirl)

44. The park that I walk through four mornings a week

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45. Iced fingers

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46. Crochet and blogging; though never at the same time

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47. making something beautiful

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48. flowers

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49. Hot toasted sandwiches with my family on a very rainy bank holiday.

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50. beauty that you see in the detail

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51. Great memories to mull over and enjoy.

SAM_0116

Notes Tied On The Sagebrush

52. I am grateful that I was able to copy this whole list with pictures and get it pasted on to my post without messing it up at all, I hope.
53. I am grateful for my kids xoxo, and my husband xoxo
54. I am grateful to read good books, and watch good films
55. Good food, good wine and good friends
56. That I live in the state of California, USA
57. Discussions with my blogger friends and getting their support for my writing

Linda G. Hill – Life in Progress

58. That moment when I’m not aware that I’m falling asleep.
59. The one Smartie (candy-coated chocolate) that tastes slightly different than every other one in the box.
60. #18 – on this list, not the number eighteen.
61. That my children are alive.
62. Whatever it is that compels me to write; specifically to tell stories.

Idiot Writer ~ Idiot Writing :

63. Poetry (obviously) – mostly my poetry – I need it – lots to say things I cannot say any other way.
64. The Sun – when it shines in the UK.
65. The cheap chocolate bars I found! (and so do not feel guilty buying)
66. The fire-place – though I hate the smoke it emits.
67. Figuring out how to pump the tyre on my car yesterday.
68. Internet – SPEcifiCALLY – finding WordPress.
69. Saturdays – Cos I do not drive on Saturdays. Usually.
70. The sound system in my car – and my teens choice of music…it COULD have been – so so – not good.
71. I nearly forgot about SALT. Salt has so many uses! I am eternally grateful that salt – AND potatoes exist.

Last but not least...or rather first

72. Last but not least…or rather first – EVER so, very grateful – that Linda has wine.  😛

Doobster418

I’m grateful for:

73. The 11 bloggers who came up with 72 oddly specific items for which they are grateful, leaving me to really stretch to come up with anything new or different.
74. That said, I wish to second, third, or fourth (I’ve lost count) #18. COFFEE!
75. God, the almighty creator of everything and everyone, for granting in me the wisdom to…oh damn, the devil made me write that. Never mind.
76. Those rare days when I’m able to sleep later than 6 a.m.
77. My wife, for being a wonderful mother who stayed home to raise two great kids while I was off doing my worky-thing.
78. San Francisco weather, because it never snows, never gets below freezing, and never gets really hot and muggy.
79. My health, except for my vertigo, tinnitus, and my current lameness due to plantar fisciitis. But otherwise, my health is pretty damn good.
80. My blog and the fellow bloggers I interact with on pretty much a daily basis.
81. iTunes
82. The Oxford comma and those who use it.

Lucy at the Excessive Gardener 

I am grateful for :

83. I am so grateful for Evernote. Those of us who use and cherish it know why life is so much better. I am really grateful that I spend the few dollars each month for the premium version.
84. Golden Retrievers. My Golden, Roger, died years ago and I still miss him. I live with a Golden, my roommate’s, and he is a joy and a pain to live with but he is proof that if you know one Golden Retriever, you know them all.
85. My new knee. How wonderful it is to walk without pain. I can hardly wait to have the other knee replaced.
86. The drug Avastin. The FDA withdrew approval of the chemo drug for breast cancer, which means insurance companies won’t cover it, and it is not cheap.  I was lucky and got in on clinical trials for Avastin. It saved my life.
87. That I live in Florida, right where I want to be: minutes from white, sandy beaches and warm Gulf waters and only 2 hours to Disney World.
88.  Better World Books.  If you know it, you know what I mean.
89. Quad Core.
90. Defensive gardening. There’s nothing more satisfying than out-smarting a bug or an animal.

Now my list:

91. I’ll start by saying what goes without saying but should be said anyway:  I’m grateful for my husband Mark, my family, and my friends.

92. I’m grateful that I live in the Twin Cities (Minneapolis-St. Paul) of Minnesota. We have an amazing combination of abundant cultural opportunities, a highly educated and literate population, PLUS endless amounts of parks, lakes, bike trails, you name it.  We need the horrific winters to keep out the riffraff.

93. I’m grateful for having a job that provides me opportunity for (partially) subsidized travel experiences.

94. As everyone else said, #18 (coffee!)

95. I’m grateful for books! So many books!  So many writers with so many words!  As long as I have the capacity to read, I’ll never be bored.

96. I’m grateful that my husband has the best hobby ever: in his spare time, he makes furniture out of wood in our garage.  He loves doing it and I love the furniture he makes for me.  Talk about win-win!

Mark made this for me!

97.  I am grateful for the internet, which provides me with the opportunity to blog and to meet all of you amazing bloggers. I’m particularly grateful for the Nano Poblano Peppers for the sense of community y’all have been providing this month.

98. Cats! I’m grateful for my kitties Tennessee and Zelda for being such cute and cuddly pains in the butt.

Tennessee and Zelda

Me – Who Am I

I’m grateful for:

99. Warmth! When it’s -10 outside, I’m grateful for a heater that works.
100. We made it to 100! I feel privileged to be the one who fills this one out.
101. My son. He shows me the world in a way that no one else can.
102. Fellow bloggers and the wonderful community we have here.
103. Today I’m grateful for today; a day that I may not have had.
104. Fruit. Fruit does a body good.
105. Sleep, finally! Insomnia is terrible.

Me Next – Chatter Master

106.  Not having a body temperature of 94 degrees.

107.  Fat baby cheeks that split in to super wide grins and smiles with various numbers of teeth-when they see me.

108.  That moment at the end of the day when I know I’m done “doing” all that I am going to do for the day and there are those peaceful few minutes of quiet and relaxing with my husband.

109.  Saying “I love you” at the end of phone calls and visits and not feeling awkward about it.  And knowing my kids don’t either because I raised them with it being easy to say “I love you”.

110.  Remembering a song from childhood and thinking no one else in the world knows it, only to Youtube it and there it is!

111.  People.   Good people.  I’m so very thankful for good people.

Pssst!  It’s me, Ann Koplow, from The Year(s) of Living Non-Judgmentally, trying to let go of judgment and add my list of oddly specific gratitudes, starting with #112, which is a number I have no particular associations with:

112.  Numbers and other things I have no particular associations with, since I love seeing things in a new light, letting go of baggage from the past.

113. Numbers and other things that I do have particular associations with, since I love things that have been in my life, up to this point.

114. Even though #112 and #113 cover everything in the universe (at least the way I think), I am also oddly specifically grateful for the way I think.

115.  Everybody who had ever read my blog or anybody else’s blog, which may seem oddly general instead of oddly specific, at this point.  (I’ve been in a very feisty mood lately, so I would like to see ANYBODY give me a difficult time about how I’m choosing to participate here.)

116. My cats, including Oscar, shown here moments after he accidentally accessed Siri — the alleged “personal helper” on my iPhone —  having about as much luck getting help from her as I usually do:

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117. My keyboard (pictured) and my fingers (not pictured):

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118. Photos I take accidentally with my iPhone, like that one directly above.

119. People I meet during the day who are willing to engage in an authentic, open way, even if only for a moment, like Kenny

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who stands guardian at the parking lot where I get my medical care, where I’ve been needing to go to several appointments lately because nobody knows what the hell is going on with my health.

120.  My memory, which allows me to quote, accurately enough, dialogs I have with people like Kenny, such as:

Kenny (obviously using the memorized script he has to say to every driver who enters the parking lot since, apparently, people are parking there who shouldn’t be): Do you have an appointment here?  Are you a patient?

Me (making an exaggerated sad face, because I REALLY DON’T WANT TO BE GOING TO A MEDICAL APPOINTMENT and then nodding “yes” slowly, saying nothing).

Kenny: (after a brief pause) Oh.

Me:  Do you believe me?

Kenny: No.

… which cheered me up considerably and resulted in my Literally Laughing Out Loud.

121. My memory, which allows me to recall another thing Kenny said to me, after I Laughed Out Loud: “You have a good day, sweetie.” (Yes, I know this is supposed to be a list of Oddly Specific Gratitude, not Oddly Repetitive Gratitude, but please see #115, above.)

122. The room to have all my feelings, including sadness, humor, fear,  disappointment, annoyance, gratitude, etc. etc. etc.

123.  The opportunity to end lists (at least my portion of them)

_____________________________________

After I published this post, I realized I forgot to include something, for which I am NOT oddly specifically grateful:

Michael’s cooking. On what planet would it be odd to be grateful for that?

 

Kim at Drunk on Life

Not sure if I start with “123.” or “124.” if I include Ann’s postscript?
I’ll go “124.” so…

124. My warm, fuzzy Sasquatch slippers

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125. Sunsets from the terrace at my loft.

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126. A fire in the fireplace on chilly Sunday mornings, especially if accompanied by #127/#18

127. #18 (Coffee ) even more so with an upgrade (a little Bailey’s Irish Cream)

128. My sister-cousins Patti and Christa.  Let me be clear that “Sister-cousins” are not a weird Southern relationship like an “Uncle Daddy.”  It’s merely cousins that are more like sisters and mine are a wonderful part of my life.

129. Making jewelry.  I don’t do it much anymore, usually just for gifts around the holidays, but I like working with beautiful materials and the soothing feeling you get while working with your hands (and letting your brain go wander).

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130. That awesome feeling when you get “your hairs did” as we say in the South.  Going to the salon, getting a shampoo with a scalp massage, a glossy new cut and color and the fabulous super-shiny blowout that makes you feel like a rockstar for the rest of the day until you sleep on your glorious new “do” and wake up in the morning looking like a haystack (i.e. back to normal).

131. The good things about Christmas (not the commercial, mass media stuff). Christmas music, candles, Christmas trees and all the sparkly holiday decor, parties, party dresses, cookies, old movies, feeling festive…most of all being with friends and family and the stuff that’s all still a little magical.

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132. Nano Poblano and Team Pepper.  The support and comments and community are wonderful and I have greatly appreciated being a part of it.

Grandmalin at Breathing Space

133.  My little library, which doubles as a spare bedroom, so when you sleep over at my house you can stay up all night reading.

134.  The Kindle I have now, which is not the original one (I have gone through 4 of them).  They just keep getting better.  I could read on my I-Pad or my I-Phone (if I wanted to go slowly cross eyed) but Kindle was my first love for downloaded books.  If I find a book there that I really love, I just might go out and buy the real thing to add to my library to tempt visitors  to stay up all night reading  borrow them.  Yes, it’s a lending library as all good libraries should be.

135.  Just to be oddly specific about my love for coffee, I am grateful for my little Tassimo which brews one hot, fresh, delicious cup of coffee at a time.

136.  The specific spot on the love seat in the living room where I sit every morning to read, and every evening to draw, and a whole lot during the day to do a whole bunch of nothing much.  The arm rest is a perfect spot for my I-Pad to perch to blat out Netflix movies, there is a little table for my coffee and my jar of pencils, room beside me for my sketch book, and a view of the outside world straight ahead out the living room window if I choose to ever look up.  The butt print you see there?  Yes, that is mine.

137.  I know saying “family” is not very specific, so here’s the short list – husband, adult children, five grandchildren, siblings and their families.  The long list includes relatives too numerous to mention, except for a special two who are both estheticians and do great pedicures on these ugly old lady feet.  Which then turn out to be not so ugly after all.

138.

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This weird guy. My alien giraffe. You cannot be unhappy when you look at this face.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The List of Oddly Specific Bloggers

Nerd in the Brain
Not a Punk Rocker
To Breath is to Write
Fish of Gold
Knocked Over by a Feather
Mental in the Midwest
Markbialczak.com
Coulddoworse
Deborah at Notes Tied on the Sagebrush
Linda at Life In Progress
Idiot Writer
Mindful Digressions
The Excessive Gardener
Booking It

Me – Who Am I.

The Chatter Blog

The Year(s) of Living Non-Judgmentally

Drunk on Life

Breathing Space

I am tagging willowdot21 who has been a faithful Team Pepper participant all month, and whose blog I have followed for a long time.  Her “If We Were Having Coffee” posts are delightful.  I wonder if she’ll say she’s grateful for coffee…

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Our Town Circa 1928

In my mother’s scribbler is an eleven year old’s version of her home town.  She starts off with some enthusiasm and then peters out by the end.  No doubt it was an assignment (No.9) by a teacher attempting to instill some civic pride in her students.

Port Elgin Ontario is situated on the beautiful shores of one of our Great Lakes called Lake Huron.  This small town has a very small population.  On the west of it is Lake Huron and on the south is a large hill which we call “The Mountain.”  From here, in the evenings, we can see a pretty sight of our town.  On the east is a large mill creek running into the Saugeen River which runs one of our mills.  On the north is a nice road leading to Southampton, five miles away.  A little farther on is the Electric Light Plant which supplies our town with lights.

Electric Light Plant, 1905
Electric Light Plant, 1905 (Photo credit: OSU Special Collections & Archives)

Port Elgin has a very large factory which employs men and women.  They make many brooms and brushes and they export them to other places.  It belongs to the Stevens, Hepner & Comapny.  There is a railway station on the east which is visited each day by many trains.  Many cattle, horses, pigs, sheep and other animals are exported from here to Toronto and other places.  Beside it is an elevator where farmers bring their grain to be stored.Our town has many streets.  Some are Emma, Gustavus and Goderich.  There is a public library, theatre and town hall.  In front of the library are two monuments in memory of our heroes.

There are nine churches.  There are two schools, public and high.  There is also a large park where there are benches and other things.  There are many sports in Port Elgin.  There is skating on the ice and playing ball and other games.

There is a row of maple trees leading to the park and many on the side of the road and flower beds have been planted here and there.

And what else is there to say about your town, which is just your boring old town.  This site goes into considerably more detail than could be contained in a child’s notebook.  Yay for real historians who write these things down making records for the curious. 

My parents never lived far from this town, and for awhile lived in it, not far from the Stevens Hepner factory and right beside what used to be the railroad tracks and is now the Rail Trail.  I think those were very happy years for them, freed from the hard work of living on the farm, and still in good health and independent. 

The library is still there, looking remarkably unchanged.  The main street is a little busier, fewer horses, more cars. 

Like my mother, I’ve started off with some enthusiasm and petered out at the end.

Questionable Answers to Unanswerable Questions

Of course no question is unanswerable because you can always say I don’t know.  Or answer it with another question, such as “why in the world would you need to know that?”   I’ve also found ‘get away from me you weirdo’ can get you off the hook at least temporarily, giving you some time to think up a more intelligent response.

There are so many plinky prompts I’ve missed!  Where the hell have I been and what have I been thinking, letting them all gang up on me like this?  I’m going to pretend that there are people out there just dieing to know what I think about random things.  So here are my answers.  Some of them considerably less well thought out than others.

What’s your favourite place to grab a cup of coffee?  That would be in my kitchen, in my housecoat, in a state of semi-consciousness.  Next favourite – McDonalds.  Their coffee here is that good.

What was the last thing you got really excited about? I tend not to be a very excitable person.  Or exciting either if you want to get all personal.  Getting ready to go on a trip with my sister to Scotland was pretty thrilling.  That was five years ago.  I’m kind of seriously overdue for hysteria of some sort or other.

Make a list of things you’ve accomplished so far this year. I have lived through yet another dreaded month of January without going mad.  I have managed to stay gainfully employed.  I have used up every last millisecond of my holidays until mid September.  I’ve reconnected with my brother.  Visited family.  Got rid of a closet door.  Eaten enough salad to choke a very large rabbit.

Have you ever written your own music or song lyrics?  Sort of, but not really.  I have been known to make up my own lyrics for tunes that are already out there.  I’m the only person I know who can sing along to instrumentals.

What famous monument do you hope to see one day? The Eiffel Tower, at night, by elevator, with all of Paris at my feet.  But if I never get there, that’s okay too.  Probably couldn’t stand the excitement anyway.

Do you have a favourite work of art?   No.  All works created by skill and imagination are beautiful to someone.  Even if it’s simply a mom in love with her childs crayon scribbles.  There’s no such thing as the best beautiful thing.

Pick a new pet to take home for free.  I think I’m done with pets for this lifetime.  It’s hard enough to tend to the care and feeding and grooming of me.  I’ll just enjoy other peoples pets and go home to my own lint roller when the day is done.

How many books do you read each year?  Since I got my Kindle, I sometimes average one a week.  So over fifty would be a reasonable estimate.  Because I still buy real books too.  I don’t really know.  I’m too busy reading to add them all up.

If you were going to open a shop, what would you sell?  Coffee beans, cups, creams, pots, filters, cakes, grinders, makers and machines and presses, and many different types of the brewed stuff.  Perhaps I should just go work for Starbucks.

When was the last time you visited a library?  My library card expired a decade ago.  I honestly don’t remember.

Make a list of all the countries you have visited.  It’s a short list.  U.S. and U.K.

Have you ever tried to grow your own fruits and vegetables?  I grow tomatoes every summer.  They flourish and thrive in spite of me.

What’s the coolest airport you’ve been in?  Can’t even imagine what would make an airport cool.  It’s a necessary evil on the way to somewhere else.

Should coffee shops limit the amount of time that lap top users can occupy tables?  Yes.  No longer than 48 hours at a time seems reasonable to me.

What’s your favourite foreign film?  I love all foreign films as long as they have subtitles.  I like subtitles for films in English too.  Actors mumble.  It’s SO annoying.  Especially for the people I’m watching the film with when I’m constantly asking ‘what did he say??’

Should the U.S. get rid of the penny?  Yes, please.  Canada is phasing it out and American pennies showing up in our country would just piss us off.

Would you ever visit a psychic or palm reader?  Been there, done that.  Will live to be 93.

Do you ever purchase lottery tickets?  No.  W does.  If he wins I’m hoping he’ll share.

Have you ever had something stolen from you?  My prescription sunglasses.  I hope the person who took them goes cross-eyed with migraines.

Do you ever listen to the radio anymore?  Well, funny you should ask.  Since W got satelite radio I’ve been listening to it non-stop.  He has found a station he likes that plays about 90% Carole King 24/7 and that’s what we’ve had playing for two days straight.  I have tried to convince him to look for other stations because to me that seems to be the whole point of having a satelite working for you. I read the list.  I made suggestions.  But Carole King it is. He will be taking it with him soon to the island and I hope he and Carole King have a very nice summer together.

Do you need coffee to wake up in the morning?  Not really, but if I don’t have any at all I’ll never last through an entire afternoon without a nap.

What type of hat suits your personality?  A tall black pointy one with a wide brim and a silver buckle and lots of stars.

Much Ado

What is love? ’tis not hereafter;

Present mirth hath present laughter;

What’s to come is still unsure:

In delay there lies no plenty;

Then come kiss me, sweet and twenty.

Youth’s a stuff will not endure.

William Shakespeare (Twelfth Night)

I’m cleaning up my “Library”, which is also the spare bedroom, because there’s just way too much random stuff in there that I should be embarrassed for guests to have to endure.  Even the closet is stuffed full of so much junk you wouldn’t want to hang anything up in there and risk having it go missing in the maze.

The way I clean and organize is perhaps not the most efficient or speedy method on earth.  Hardly even got started when I came upon a book with the above quote in it.  It’s one of my favourites.  So I put it on my blog.  And I turned off the light in there because I probably won’t go back and do any more tonight.  You have to be in the mood for this nonsense.  And as fast as the mood hit me, it also deserted me.  What can you do.

There’s already quite a pile of stuff on the bed that needs to come out of that room, which means it has to go somewhere else, in this case downstairs;  perhaps a lot of it should make it’s way out the back door to the garbage bin instead.  That would make for a much shorter trip.  And less arranging at the other end.  It’s well past time to purge the toy room again too and this influx of more things will just increase the complications.

However, this week there’s no garbage pick up.  So that’s a perfectly good enough reason for me to put the whole thing off.  Perhaps indefinitely, since there’s only two days left in December and nobody should be expected to do anything strenuous in the gawdawful month of January.  I do want to rearrange the books, but if I find awesome quotes in all of them, I’ll be at it for a very long time.

Two more days of work and then I can put the Christmas things away for another year.  After the 26th I make myself tolerate them for a few more days, but normally they’ve disappeard well before New Year’s Eve.

Clutter I Collect

Do I collect anything? Why, yes I do. ANYTHING being the operative word here. If I like it, I collect it. Sometimes even if I don’t like it much I find myself hanging on to it anyway. One day I could have a monstrous garage sale of all my collected things and it would have no recognizable theme whatsoever.

Every so often I ‘uncollect’ a great number of collected items though. Otherwise I might find myself buried underneath them, never again to surface. I give things away, or lend them, or toss them or stuff them out of sight and forget about them.

I gave or threw away all but the most special of toys after my kids grew up, but found myself collecting them again for my grandchildren. After 10 years of this there’s of course way too many of them, but I’m not sure what should stay and what should go. Maybe there’s something treasured and cherished in there for any one of them, and getting rid of it could prove emotional and traumatic and they would never forgive me. It’s more likely that they’ll all simply remember grandma’s toy room as being filled with junk and that they had hardly any room to turn around.

But still, just in case. Best to wait until they’re at least in their teens, or maybe even have kids of their own This plan appeals to me mostly because adhering to it means that I don’t have to do anything about the mess right now.

I have a lot of African things, and a lot of books. Those things I love, as much as it’s possible to love inanimate objects. I would miss them if they were gone. The rest, not so much.

Last week I threw out three beat up muffin tins my mother gave me. They were in really bad shape and I decided they just weren’t something it made sense to hang on to for the sentimental value. So they got dumped in the bin. A couple of days later I bought a brand new teflon muffin tin, because living without at least one muffin tin is apparently something I’m uncomfortable doing.

But it WAS three for one. So that must mean I’m ahead of the game. At least in the bakeware department. I’m working on the rest. Some projects are lifelong, and I’ve accepted that the de-clutter process is probably one of them.

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My Dream Home

Picture a quiet location with beautiful country garden landscaping (my dream home comes complete with a full-time gardener, because my own thumbs are anything but green). There are lovely old trees and a couple of benches and some stone paths and a resident squirrel or two. I will insist that my gardener plant daisies everywhere.

The house is chalet style with lots of sparkling clear windows. (I suppose I’ll need a full-time window washer as well.) Inside there is dark wood and lots of red and many nooks and crannies. There is a winding staircase to a loft with a library, a writing desk, a comfy couch and a small studio with excellent light from all the tall windows and the beautiful sky light.

The library will be so fabulous that I’ll never want to be anywhere else, and eventually I’ll forget where I put such mundane things as the kitchen and the linen closet. Already I don’t care. If the library is the only part of this dream that comes true, it will be enough.

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