Category: Projects

My 3 Summer Projects of 2017 (Because I don’t know how to vacation)

With my new day job, I’ve been spoiled with a ridiculous 10 weeks of vacation. I’ve had summers off, which at first sounded like a really great idea. But by the third week, I’m starting to get a bit restless. So for the last few summers, I’ve tackled a project to keep me busy. Two summers ago, it was updating the main bathroom. Last summer, it was the development and launch of a website for one of my freelance clients.

See? I’m bad at vacationing.

This summer, instead of tackling one big project, I’m working on a few smaller ones:

Setting up the office

I’ve fallen into a bad habit of working from my couch. While it’s nice to have the flexibility to choose to work there from time to time, I’m not a huge fan of the fact it’s becoming my home base. My end tables are covered with office supplies, which frequently end up in my dog’s mouth. There are a lot of distractions when I work from the couch and it means there is next to no work-life separation. I could easily just work all the time.

We do have a home office. It just doesn’t look like one right now. So I plan to set this up so it’s useable as a workspace. This is going to be quite the project. Because there is so much stuff in there that doesn’t need to be.

Which brings me to my second project of the summer:

Decluttering the house

We bought this place 8 years ago and I can’t believe how much stuff has collected in that time. Our guest bedroom, spare bedroom and home office are all full of random stuff that otherwise doesn’t really have a home. Instead of having three storage rooms, I want to restore them to their former glory: a guest bedroom, a workout room/ spare room and a home office.

This means I’ll have to go through boxes and piles of random stuff that we haven’t really used. I have boxes in what should be the home office that are full of kitchen and living room items we packed up three years ago when we tore up and replaced all the floors on our main level and have forgotten about. Clearly, it isn’t anything we need. We haven’t gone looking for that stuff for three years.

There are binders and notes from the various post secondary courses we’ve done that need sorting and consolidation. We have more books than shelves to put them on. There are clothes and shoes and even extra furniture that is just taking up space. So I want to tackle those rooms, decide what’s to be donated, what’s to be recycled and what needs to be trashed. It’ll be awesome to have more useable space and I purging and organizing. It feels so good.

Yes, I know. I’m weird. Stop looking at me like that.

Taming my wild garden

Not a euphemism.  I’ve never really cared too much about our garden, if I’m being perfectly honest. I’ve had gardens other places that I’ve lived. My favourite was the front garden in the house I lived in during my second and third year of college. It was beautiful and full of wild flowers, Black-Eyed Susans, hostas and poppies. Until the new home owners ripped it out the day they took possession of that house. Those fucking monsters.

This could be why I lost interest in putting an effort into my garden. I was fine to let my front garden do its thing, but haven’t really planned it out or planted anything new. It fit it with my surrounding neighbours and their (lack of) landscaping. Everything was cool.

Then last summer, my stupid new neighbours ripped out their garden, built it up with brick edging, planted gorgeous plants and even finished it off with mulch. Their garden makes ours look pathetic. So at the risk of having my heart broken when we sell this place (hopefully in the next few years), and another beloved garden is murdered by some heartless monster, I want to tackle my garden.

Those are my summer projects. Do you plan projects to take on in your down time or vacation time? Or are you better at taking vacation than I am? Can you teach me how to relax?

Tell me all about it in the comments!

Getting Started

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I’m the worst at getting something started.  I’m a perfectionist. I don’t want to start something unless I’m absolutely certain I’ve made the right choice. I don’t like to start something unless I know I’ll be successful with it.

That’s just three excuses, if you gave me some more time, I promise you that I could come up with a hundred more.

The closest thing to the truth in my excuses comes down to that last one.  Failure.  I’m not exactly a stranger to failure. I have started a lot of things that I’ve failed at.  Projects.  Jobs. Challenges. Relationships.  It’s not like I ever go into something new with the intention to fail.  I try.  I give it my best go.  But sometimes, things just don’t work out.  When things go wrong, it’s important to remember it’s the getting started and trying new things part that matters.

So all that being said, here goes another crack at NaBloPoMo (National Blog Posting Month).

Check out my fellow NaBloPoMoers:

And if you’re thinking about giving it a go, join usssssssss.  Leave me a comment and I’ll add you to my list.

It’s that time of the year.

It’s nearly November and you know what that means… National Blog Posting Month (NaBloPoMo) time.  The one month in the year where I (make an effort to) blog every day for a month.

The biggest challenge I have with the whole post-a-day challenges is usually coming up with 30 days’ worth of blog topics.  The beauty of NaBloMoPo is that their are prompts for each day and there is a community around the project to keep you writing.

This year, I’m taking on this challenge with some friends from Twitter, so be sure to check out their NaBloPoMo posts on their blogs:

We’ll be NaBloPoMoing with the BlogHer community and I totally suggest you all join us:
NaBloPoMo November 2013

Let’s do this.

How to Avoid Making BIG Decisions

My guide to avoiding making a decision.  I find you can apply this to any decision making process to help you avoid actually making a decision:

1. Consider all your options. Then decide that this is STUPID, this is too much pressure and you can’t possibly be expected to decide about this RIGHT NOW.

2. Browse Tumblr, because, as you’ve already decided… This decision making is not going to happen today.

3. Take a walk to your favourite coffee shop, chat up your barista, consider trying a new blend, but eventually settle on your regular order. Find the perfect spot at the coffee shop to enjoy your coffee. Preferably at a table between a hipster writing his latest screenplay and a couple on an awkward first date.

4. Text your friends and tell them you have a BIG decision to make and you’re dealing with it by not dealing with it.

5. Check Twitter. Because, well, it’s been at least ten minutes since you’ve checked your feed and there might be something new or interesting that you’ve missed.

6. Fall down the Pinterest rabbit hole. Resurface two days later, full of ideas for your garden design, home colour palette and recipes for dinner that you can make with a tin can and a tiny lighter.

7. Check Twitter again, cuz you’ve probably missed A LOT while you were lost on Pinterest.

8. Curl up in bed, on the couch, or some other relatively flat, but comfortable surface. Hide under a blanket. The BIG decision can’t get to you if it can’t find you.

9. Have a TV show marathon. Seriously, just watch 2 seasons straight of Gilmore Girls. Community. The Office. 30 Rock. Vampire Diaries. Don’t the actors all look so young in season one? And you TOTALLY forgot about that major plot development. It was such a BIG deal. BIG deal? Is that like a BIG decision? NO. You were NOT thinking about that. Quick, back to the show. Maybe time to watch another season. Or five.

10. Make a pro/con list. Ensure the pro side is equally balanced with the con side. Harder to make a BIG decision if there are no glaring benefits or drawbacks to any of your options.

11. Invite everyone you’ve ever known or met out for coffee, lunch, drinks, dinner, a movie, a walk in the park, to feed ducks… To do ANYTHING, really. Just so long as it keeps you busy. Because then you’re just way too busy to make any BIG decisions.

12. Decide that you’ve probably put the decision making off for too long. It’s time to grow a pair, face this head on and do some serious think—wait a minute. It’s been at least a week or so since you’ve blogged. Maybe you should go write a blog post. THEN it will be time to make a decision. Maybe.

13. Check Twitter. Check Tumblr. Hey, is that Facebook thing still a thing? Maybe you should check to see if it’s still a thing.

14. Repeat steps 1- 13. Then again. Then a third time, but just for some extra excitement, mix up the order of the steps. Then have a nap, walk your dog, ride a bike. Then repeat this step.

15. Decide that enough is enough, it’s time to suck it up. You can’t put this off forever, time to make a decision. …Ah, it’s late. Decide that maybe tomorrow or next week would be a better time.

 

Inspired by today’s Scintilla Project Prompt B: Tell the story about something interesting (anything!) that happened to you, but tell it in the form of an instruction manual (Step 1, Step 2, Step 3….)

The Scintilla Project is a fortnight of story sharing. For more info or to get involved, visit the Scintilla Project website.

The Science of Tequila

The Scintilla Project

 

“Tequila makes me do wild things…”

New boyfriend lifted an eyebrow as he ordered the shots, “Oh?”

“Yup, I become an entirely different woman…”

“Really,” he slid the salt shaker towards me.

“Yup,” I took the shaker and went to salt my hand.

“Wait! Do me!” My friend Shannon offered me her salted neck.

I shrugged, licked the salt, took the shot, and bit into a slice of lime.

“See? Wild things,” I smiled at Boyfriend.

“I think we’re busted…” He gestured towards the other end of the bar.

I turned to see our 3rd period physics teacher.

“Ruh roh…”

 

drabble is a short work of fiction of one hundred words in length¹.

The Scintilla Project is a fortnight of story sharing. For more info or to get involved, visit the Scintilla Project website.

You’re enough.

A letter sent out into the world on behalf of moreloveletters.com;

Dear friend,

I remember what it feels like to not feel loved.  It wasn’t that long ago that I felt that way.  I wanted that feeling so desperately that I was willing to stay in a relationship long after I should, long after those feelings were gone.  I hoped they’d come back.  I figured maybe it was just a phase, or maybe I needed to change something about myself  so I’d be loved again.  I’d be funnier, smarter, prettier, quieter… 

In the process of trying to recapture the feeling of being loved, I ended up completely losing myself instead.  Suddenly, I didn’t recognize myself anymore.  There was nothing left of the me I was before him.  I was miserable and I didn’t like the person I’d become.  

(more…)

Quick: A drabble

She was waiting for him by the door, her eyes found him the second he stepped into the room. She grabbed his arm as he walked by and leaned in to whisper in his ear. He glanced at her casually, but she knew he’d heard her.


Five minutes later, he’d caught up with her, slipping silently into the room. She closed the door behind him and locked it. The next second, hands were everywhere. His lips brushed hers, they were peeling clothing off each other.


“I’m not good at these,” he muttered.


She smiled, “I’ll be the judge of that.”


drabble is a short work of fiction of one hundred words in length¹.