Sunday, May 17, 2015

Stream of Consciousness Sunday - Perceptions Cloud Reality

As I write, AMC is running a Mad Men marathon. Just finished watching my first episode. while it's intriguing, I'm glad it wasn't a show I felt a need to watch. The main character Don Draper seems to be rather crazy in an obsessive, compulsive & controlling sort of way after having had a messed up childhood.

It's been a stressful week at work but a relaxing week at home. The first week in a long while that I wasn't running a million miles an hour trying to meet every obligation. Was even able to see a few girlfriends & celebrate a belated birthday over appetizers & a glass of  wine.

Fadra has taken a couple of weeks off from Stream of Consciousness Sunday posting, but we're back on again this week.

So here's my 5 minute brain dump:

SOC Sunday 2015

What did we do before the internet...

When feelings of depression overcame us.

When a friend passed away.

When you lost touch with someone who you thought might be your friend forever.

When you couldn't get a hold of your weight & felt hopeless.

When your kids actions made you feel life your control as a parent was slipping away.

When you couldn't find a job that paid a living wage.

When you are homeless and are feeling like there's no light at the end of the tunnel & things will never improve.

All these things passed by my eyes via social media this past week.  Social media is that place where we all feel as if we need to put our best foot forward & show the world that everything is perfect.  Picture perfect posts get likes & heart-warming comments and who doesn't want those things. But sometimes it's ok to be perfectly imperfect. It's ok to extend an ear to a friend who could use someone to stop for a moment & listen, to offer advice or just be a virtual shoulder to lean on. 

There are so many seemingly perfectly decorated homes which stay immaculate & impeccably organized & photo-ready at the drop of a hat which grace the pages of blogs & Instagram - but yours is far from that, no matter how much you shop & rearrange & tidy up your home is just too ordinary to showcase to anyone. But that is the rule - not the exception as the internet would have you believe.

And that's just fine...because perceptions cloud our reality.

This was my 5 minute Stream of Consciousness Sunday post. It’s five minutes of your time and a brain dump. Want to try it? Here are the rules…
  • Set a timer and write for 5 minutes.
  • Write an intro to the post if you want but don’t edit the post. This is writing in the raw.
  • Publish it somewhere. Anywhere. The back door to your blog if you want. But make it accessible.
  • Link your new posts to All Things Fadra (feel free to use her SOC Sunday graphic).


Sunday, May 10, 2015

May Showers...Early Flowers

It's Mother's Day 2015 & I have a healthy jump at this season's Gardening.  Yesterday was the better of the two weekend days & I took advantage of it - transplanting a few starts from seed into 10 containers on the deck. Today is pretty much a wash out as it began to rain in the early afternoon just after I paid for a few things at the local nursery.

Last year for Mother's Day my MIL gave all of the girls - her daughters & we "outlaws" tulip bulbs. While I'm a pretty good container deck gardener - learning a little more every year, I'm a rookie landscape gardener.  We dug up the existing borders that line our backyard patio beneath the deck. Hubby let me take over the bed & do whatever I pleased. These are the tulips that were planted last fall.  I had no idea which varieties they were so I just planted them & prayed they would come up & look halfway decent.

The anticipation was immense, but totally worth the wait:

 
 







 
 
I also received a Home Depot basket of bulbs from my big & little boys with both Daffodils & more Tulips, so come fall, those will be added to that same bed & hopefully they will all return next Spring, filling out the bed even more.
 
 
For Mother's Day today, hubby got these fun birdhouses to add to the deck, which has become a haven for so many birds, bees & butterflies.
 
 
These blooms always appear early under the shade of the deck.  I don't know off-hand what they are called but they're so pretty & unique.
 

 

The gardening process is always a marathon - not a sprint.  It always takes a few months to get everything into place & then before we know it the season here in the Twin Cities is gone in a heartbeat.

 

Sunday, April 26, 2015

Open Season

Drought abounds here in the Twin Cities. The temps are crawling up. We desperately need rain because there wasn't much snow this past winter & we haven't had much in the way of April Showers.  

I have a really good head start on my deck garden - started a few seeds in early March. The progress is rewarding... we had a late crop of some varieties of Tomatoes last Summer & Fall because I waited a bit too long to start the seeds. 

Not everything I planted sprouted though - live & learn. I'll know better not to pair certain things that sprouted early (tomatillos & various types of tomatoes) with seeds that need more time like Peppers, Parsley, Peas, Broccoli, Celery, Spinach and a number of other veggies.

Planting a few of some seeds because I wasn't sure which would sprout. No doubt I'll do that again - no guarantee how much of which seeds will germinate.

Pictured below are the Black Krim, Hillbilly, Yellow Pear, Garden Peach, Roma, Super Sweet 100s, Honey Delight, Tomatillos & the one Austrian Winter Pea that sprouted out of 12 (yes that made me very sad.)

I'll blog the progress as the weeks go by.  It may be a couple more weeks before we no longer have lows in the 30's & I can move these babies to containers out on the deck.












One of the things I love about Spring is the opportunity to re-fresh our home decor, including finding new ways to utilize & display pieces I don't use that often. 



This pitcher is from the now defunct Taste of Home Entertaining line. Unfortunately I am not the Multi-Level Marketing type & never did much more than sign up to sell it, then buy a few pieces for personal use at a discount.  The kitchen window view I put on Instagram just didn't do this simple & classic arrangement justice, so I brought them outside into the sunshine.

But it's Sunday & with our beyond crazy schedules, I've skipped a couple of weeks, so check in with me next week for a 5 minute Stream of Consciousness brain dump...

Sunday, March 29, 2015

Stream of Consciousness Sunday - Changing Landscape

I'm back at it - pulling thoughts from my cluttered head & putting words on a page.  Such a bizarre week - an unexpected death in our extended family.  A father, only 50, who had been diagnosed with stage 3 Colon Cancer, but most likely due to fatal complications from chemotherapy & a genetic heart condition he was called home way too soon, leaving behind a wife, three kids, his parents, his 2 siblings & a myriad of friends & family.

Others in my circle have experiences heartbreaking losses, or are dealing with a family member with disease diagnosises requiring aggressive treatment. It never seems fair or just, it just is.  We are left to do what we can to support our friends & loved ones as best we can.



So here's my 5 minute brain dump...

SOC Sunday 2015

Spring is arriving sooner than normal for Minnesotans.  It's barely April & my husband has already played his first round of golf.  I have high expectations for this year's growing season, the efforts more planned & calculated than ever.  

When we moved into this home coming up on 10 years ago, the lansdcape was beautifully done - the work of the previous owners, who left behind meticulous records of everything planted on the property.  It was overwhelming to say the least - I knew nothing about maintaining landscapes or distinguishing between a dozen differn't types of fertilizers. I still don't.

So since Hubby had proclaimed the outside of the house his territory to maintain & the inside was mine, I let him go at it.  But outside of lawn care & anything other than trimming hedges back or cutting back hostas at the end of the fall, he was just as lost as I was in that department,. As he slowly started to decontruct the existing landscaping, attempting to make it a lower maintenance effort from year to year, my love of gardening started to emerge.

I started with filling pots with colorful arrangements of flowers to brighten up our front walkway & steps, then branched out into the world of container gardening on our deck. Over the years, my love of growing has blossomed. Last year 27 containers filled our deck & each year I am anticipating more & planning how to do things better, getting more yield from my efforts. Our landscape continues to evolve. Last fall, I planted new tulip bulbs, a Mother's Day gift from my MIL last year. Blanket Flowers, Zinnia, Lillys & strawberries will edge our home again & for the first time I'll plant more Blueberries in the yard & grow a couple patio varieties along with a few strawberries on our deck.  I intend to plant some wildflowers on the edge of our marsh. A peek at this year's seedlings...



This was my 5 minute Stream of Consciousness Sunday post. It’s five minutes of your time and a brain dump. Want to try it? Here are the rules…
  • Set a timer and write for 5 minutes.
  • Write an intro to the post if you want but don’t edit the post. This is writing in the raw.
  • Publish it somewhere. Anywhere. The back door to your blog if you want. But make it accessible.
  • Link your new posts to All Things Fadra (feel free to use her SOC Sunday graphic).

Sunday, March 22, 2015

Stream of Consciousness Sunday: Mid-Life. The Here & Now.

It's almost 3:00 pm on Sunday - much later than when I'm normally sitting down to write this post. While online late last night I noticed Fadra had not yet done her writing so I gave her a little shout-out on Twitter & found out her internet had been down, plus she had simply forgotten to write her own post.

All is good now - she & a few others have linked up - but after I do there will still be plenty of room for you to do the same - so get after it.

So here's my 5 minute brain dump...

SOC Sunday 2015



So Munchkin Hockey is back - for a short while. You don't realize what a huge part of your life it is until you are away from it. Ran into an association mom who is on a different team in our game league and she claimed to be going through withdrawal - in only a week found herself missing the comraderie & conversations with other Hockey Moms. I know exactly how she feels. 

Wouldn't call it mid-life crisis, but things are changing - priorities shifting from my own to that of my son's as has my sense of self worth. Haven't spent as much time on myself as I do making sure my son's life is in order. Beginning to think that needs to change. That saying "if mama ain't happy, ain't nobody happy"totally applies here.

Someone posted on Facebook last night 2 questions which had to be answered in 2 words: 

  1. Are you happy?
  2. What made you answer the way you did above?

My answer was - Yes, Gratitude

I did not lie - I'm extremely grateful for the blessings that have been bestowed upon me, but I would be fibbing if I didn't admit that I had an answer for the "No" too. Sometimes we are so careful to project outward all the fun & what we deem to be the things that others in our social circle will deem interesting & light. Who wants to be around a downer?!

As the washing machine & dishwasher slosh & whir while the tea kettle whistles - I think of everything I should be doing besides writing. 

But at least for this 5 minutes I was able to take my mind off of all those things that remain undone for work, for this home & for me.

This was my 5 minute Stream of Consciousness Sunday post. It’s five minutes of your time and a brain dump. Want to try it? Here are the rules…
  • Set a timer and write for 5 minutes.
  • Write an intro to the post if you want but don’t edit the post. This is writing in the raw.
  • Publish it somewhere. Anywhere. The back door to your blog if you want. But make it accessible.
  • Link your new posts to All Things Fadra (feel free to use her SOC Sunday graphic).

Sunday, March 15, 2015

Stream of Consciousness Sunday - Rituals


A rare weekend without kid sports is coming to an end. Last weekend was the finale of a really fun & busy kid hockey season so I didn't find time to do any free writing.  I'm back - once again at the end of the day when I should be logged into work right now, but I'd much rather chill for just a few minutes more...

So here's my 5 minute brain dump...

Rituals.
SOC Sunday 2015

Our snow is almost gone... a bit early for Minnesota but we're not complaining. Everyone has seasonal rituals. Call it New Year Resolutions, Spring Cleaning, Fall Back whatever you prefer, we all have certain things we do when the change of the seasons come along.

The want-to-be interior designer & personal shopper craves changing things up in our home for the Fall, the holidays & now for Spring. It started out as something for my kid, to create life-long memories & traditions - but now I realize it's exactly those things, but for myself. Often times we wish for things we saw other friends have but didn't...and for me it was family rituals & traditions. 

So when the forecast called for sunny skies & temperatures in the 60's, the rest of the winter decor had to go. Out came the bunnies, the Easter eggs, the linen pillows, a lighter throw for the living room couch and the gardening decor. The look is fresh, much lighter, more crisp, a bit eclectic but still warm. I planted my second tray of seeds & did a little shopping... incorporating a few new pieces of decor into the mix. 

My favorite go-to places for the finds are HomeGoods, TJMaxx, Zulily & sometimes Marshalls. Check out my Tumblr blog & you'll see a few of the fun things I spot.

Overall it was a great weekend, it actually hit a record 70 degrees today - but I'm curious if I'm the only crazy mom who lives for the seasonal switch?

This was my 5 minute Stream of Consciousness Sunday post. It’s five minutes of your time and a brain dump. Want to try it? Here are the rules…
  • Set a timer and write for 5 minutes.
  • Write an intro to the post if you want but don’t edit the post. This is writing in the raw.
  • Publish it somewhere. Anywhere. The back door to your blog if you want. But make it accessible.
  • Link your new posts to All Things Fadra (feel free to use her SOC Sunday graphic).


Sunday, March 1, 2015

Stream of Consciousness Sunday - Under The Wire


It's late on Sunday night & I could just as easily skip this task and chill. It's been a busy but a productive weekend, but 5 minutes of writing will do my mind good. So here it is:

This week's 5 minute brain dump...

SOC Sunday 2015



When you're a working mom, you can find yourself living for the weekends. All week long you are racing against the clock. It's not easy to work an extra hour or two here & there anymore in the office. You squeeze as much as possible into each day, then drag your laptop home at night or for the weekend & using whatever little bit of energy you have left, usually in the wee hours of the night, you try to focus on what there wasn't enough time for.

But it's hard, so hard to squeeze that time away from my child, the housework, and all the other family obligations that we all have. I was a very productive mama this weekend - mountains of laundry washed, folded & put away, floors vacuumed or swept, bed linens stripped cleaned & replaced, grocery shopping done, bathrooms cleaned, plants watered, family time - lots of it with an outing on Friday night, hockey on Saturday & church activities Sunday morning. 

Meals for the week have been planned, the kid has started his homework for the week. It's going to be Spring soon, so I started planting a few seeds. My hubby asked if I intended to start my entire garden from seed this year & I hope to be able to get a good portion of it started from seed vs buying starts. Every year there is so much more to learn about the art of gardening.

So I didn't blow this off - I'm finding time to do the things that matter, the things that re-charge me & make me relax a bit more going into the next work week, even if it means getting things done under the wire.

This was my 5 minute Stream of Consciousness Sunday post. It’s five minutes of your time and a brain dump. Want to try it? Here are the rules…
  • Set a timer and write for 5 minutes.
  • Write an intro to the post if you want but don’t edit the post. This is writing in the raw.
  • Publish it somewhere. Anywhere. The back door to your blog if you want. But make it accessible.
  • Link your new posts to All Things Fadra (feel free to use her SOC Sunday graphic).