Thursday, January 3, 2019

A wellspring of ideas. . . . . . . . . . .

. . . . . . . but not much energy to get going on them!

Let's blame it on the weather. Again.
How can you 'take down' outdoor Christmas decor when it's constantly 
raining, unseasonably warm and humid, muddy and messy underfoot,
and just being out of the house is unwelcoming?

I have ideas for this year. They involve the garden, the part named
the back yard here in America. The front garden is not bad. Come 
Spring it might be just about manageable for two aging gardeners
who have time, tools, gloves by the dozens, and now kneeling pads!
 Energy, flexibility, and non-painful limbs are hoped for as I continue 
physiotherapy on my right shoulder.
Our back garden is a disaster and requires much TLC in the 
coming months. Much of the damage is due to that heavy, wet
snowfall just before Christmas, breaking boughs on many shrubs
 and small trees which I agree we should've pruned earlier.
 My 'Secret Garden' of the past years is no 
longer calming, it's become more of a nightmare!

 So this is what I'm doing too much of lately.
Watching old movies and Outlander on TV.
Hanging out with throws and pillows, heating pad on the bad shoulder
after stretching exercises. Going to PT twice weekly.
Making soups - new favorite is curried sweet potato - recipe from
of all places Better Homes & Gardens magazine.
Sipping hot chocolate in my new big mug, eating chocolate,
nibbling snacks and leftover mince pies from the parties - then disliking
 the numbers on the bathroom scale. 
Re-reading a pile of last year's magazines before tossing or sharing.
 Thinking a lot about taking down the decorations, seriously
 sorting through them, downsizing, and then packing away just the
 ones to pull out again eleven months from now.
Oh, did go walking a few times on the drier days - the nearby school track
 and around the neighborhood - it felt good and made 
me forget how much my shoulder hurts!

Indoors, thoughts of projects to be addressed this year are overwhelming me. 
Most important -- big, messy and expensive -- will be replacing our entire
 heating/cooling system. The original system is now 34 years old and
is no longer happy running with band-aid fixes. I'm living on the edge with
 fingers crossed the heat or air conditioning will respond when I flip the switch,
 or will I be making the phone call and putting on another pot of coffee while
 awaiting our HVAC guy. . . . . . he's a very pleasant man but I don't want
 him visiting so often!

Then there's cleaning out the attic, painting walls, scraping ceilings, 
cleaning carpet, replacing furniture - all making me wish even more that
 we were instead selling up and moving to a brand new, or newish, easy to
 manage, one level condo, where just locking the doors behind us, and we
 can travel here, there and everywhere, whilst we're still able.
 Sounds like a good plan to me. . . . . . just need to get a certain other
 person on board!

What are you doing on these somewhat depressing 
January days?


  1. I am very tired of the rain and gloom myself! We did manage to get outside on one sunny day and take down the lighted garland that was on the back deck railing. All other Christmas inside has been put away. I am on a cleaning kick right now. Took everything off the book shelves in the living room, dusted and rearranged. Totally empty the fridge and freezer over the past two days and cleaned it until it sparkles. Mopped the kitchen floor today. Tomorrow I am getting create and am planning on painting my faux mora clock a new color with chalk paint.

    1. Penny you are making feel so guilty, and so behind with everything! Hopefully this darned shoulder will heal soon and although I don't have a beautiful Mora clock to paint (what AS color will you use?), I have a ton of other things requiring attention!

  2. Not a good plan, but the Best plan! That is, to move to an "easy to manage one level condo".

  3. I am still in Christmas mode reading books, watching movies, baking, and the like. Next week, things will change some. In the meantime, the weather is crimping my style. All your plans sound excellent if you don’t have to do it all. A new Condo? I can see why it might hold some allure... I know that you folks will figure it out.

    1. I've already 'figured it out' dear Vee but he's not listening!!!
      This year needs to be different, we are definitely aging! Perhaps changes made sooner rather than later will work best for a safer and easier life - what's remaining of it.
      Stay warm, if it's chilly in Maine now - and continue to enjoy Christmas mode, it's the best at this often dreary month.
      New Year good wishes to you and your loved ones.
      Mary -

  4. I always think of the new plans this time of the year. We've had rain rain rain and wiiiiiiiind like crazy this winter. We spend four days just before christmas in a nearby B&B on the lake because of a power outage that lasted far too long and our house is all electric so we nearly froze before we gave and and called the B&B. It was delightful, with the most fabulous bed, but we were glad when the electricity came back on, Dec. 23, so we could get back to our celebrations. We downsized a lot this year (decorations) and even more when we packed away everything - next year will probably downsize a bit more, until it is easier to decorate - and more fun too. I have a list of things I want to accomplish this year - some simple and quick, some long term, right now I'm thinking of digging out the crazy quilt and doing more stitching on it. After I've stitched for a long time it seems repetitive and so I put it away for a while and it seems fresh and new when I get it out. Maybe this will be the year I take the last stitches to finish it up - there are a lot of stitches to go though. Happy New Year my dear.

    1. Happy New Year JoAnn - may all go well in 2019 for you all in the beautiful PNW.
      I will definitely be off to a hotel if the heat goes off this winter - whether the system quits or a power outage! Glad your B&B stay was fun, like a pre-Christmas special holiday!
      Happy quilting - I'm knitting and find it very relaxing on these winter evenings. Fortunately, despite my rotator cuff issue, I can still knit for an hour of so without much pain.
      Hugs - Mary

  5. After our wet fall I was hoping for less rain and more sun in the new year. So far that doesn't seem to be working out too well. :). I can imagine the soggy conditions in your garden coupled with an uncooperative shoulder are making things a bit overwhelming at the moment. I can tell you that on New Year's Day when there was a break from the rain I planted a flat of pansies in my new front garden. It is the size of a postage stamp, but seemed so wonderfully manageable after our last place. An added bonus was meeting many new neighbors who were out getting some exercise. Everybody seems so friendly here. I hope it won't be long until your shoulder is feeling much better and the sun is shining once again in North Carolina.

    1. KIm, so glad you are settling in and are happy with your new home and small garden! Can I come and move in too please! Any lots left or finished homes perhaps for sale, haha!
      Happiest of new years to you and yours - good health (most important) and much joy with your new 'life', nice neighbors, and easier maintenance - my dream!
      Hugs - Mary

  6. Dear Mary
    SNAP! We are in the same boat it seems!
    Here we have retirement villages with apartments and houses.
    There are many lovely options available and I would like a house with a small garden to scratch about in.
    I would like to move out of the city, away from the traffic, up north somewhere to be nearer the family.
    I’m up against huge resistance too!
    Everything needs doing in our house, so much so that I now find it overwhelming!
    The aches and pains from gardening or anything that involves stretching, stay around for longer now!
    The mind is willing but the body is lagging behind.
    Oh dear, I won’t go on, but Im just letting you know you’re not on your own!
    Take care dear Mary, I’m praying your shoulder eases and the pain goes away - getting older isn’t for sissies!
    Much love
    Shane xxx

  7. I've done very little since Christmas, too. A dodgy throat has sapped my energy. There are lots of ideas mulling around my brain, but that's as far as they've gotten. There's still a bit of Christmas here and there that will be dealt with over the weekend, before school begins on Monday. It's coming so quickly.
    Rain and gloom for most of the week here, too, although today there is sunshine and blue sky. We must enjoy it while we have it.
    I hope your shoulder improves quickly, Mary.

  8. Oh my, they can be depressing. I am watching the old Outlander shows preparing for the time I can get the new season on DVD. I don't have STARZ, so have to wait. After I watch it all, I send it to my cousin in CA. to also watch. I can't wait to see Jamie and Breanna meet. Your pillow reminds me of Outlander. Take care, dear friend. I am also developing the workshop programs for two very different events this year. Today was a mad day of organizing them. This is going to be my last year to do that and then I want to play and not be responsible for awhile.

  9. Your home and secret garden, nightmarish as it may be these days, is truly beautiful and loved to the Tee. Still, I can totally understand the appeal of a newer, even smaller condo that doesn't need as much fixing up, etc. Good luck there with Bob! :)

    I have to say, whilst it would have been so nice to have spent a long time in one home, and its not so fun being in such transition as of late, at the time, there is a certain degree of freedom there. I LOVE being utterly decluttered and not weighed down with so many things to take care of. Not owning one's own home too, whilst a worthy investment for sure, does relieve one from the worries of repairs and all that entails too.


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