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"There is something in the nature of tea that leads us into a world of quiet contemplation of life." --Yutang Lin

Sunday, March 13, 2016

Spring has sprung, at least I hope it stays around. We're into Mud Season now, which means rain and well, mud. I did get to work outside a bit yesterday, building a new raised bed for the potatoes out back and cleaning up a bit--cutting down honeysuckle, for the most part. The bunny--Cinnamon--is outside now, and that makes me happy. :)

I've also been working on finishing the next book in the Beth Hill series. I've been writing it for what seems like aeons; on and off for the past four years, it seems. I finished the first book in the storyarc, but the second has taken forever to finish. But now I know what happens, and I just have to get there.

Due to the day job, it will take some time to finish, but I am hopeful I can finish it by the end of March at the latest.

I'm in the process of updating Plethora as well, with some thoughts about crafting and why that I now have a deadline for finishing the rugs on the Big Green Loom.

Jennifer 11:40 AM

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Wednesday, February 10, 2016

It occurs to me, perhaps not for the first time, that if you concentrate on 'living your dream' and 'not settling for less' and 'taking that chance' and not 'blooming where you're planted', you're actually losing out on the present by focusing so thoroughly on the future that you miss the entire process of becoming what you already know you are.

You don't need outside validation. You only need to believe in it yourself, whatever 'it' may be.

I have no patience for people who are so focused on the fact that they are not living their dreams that they lose their present. Bloom where you are planted is not settling for less. It's making do with what you have, and realizing that some dreams are realistically unreachable; that some dreams are just that--dreams, and should remain that way.

If you have a passion, that's great. I have one, and let me tell you, I wouldn't trade it for anything in the world. But if you spend all of your time on the coattails of those you feel are living the life you hope/wish/dream you have, you're missing out on the fact that their life is NOT your life. YOUR life is your life. And it's totally different from anyone else's life, and totally, uniquely yours.

There's nothing wrong with working a job that pays well enough to cover your living expenses, bills and rent or mortgage with some leftover for savings, hobbies, and whatever else might interest you while you pursue your passions on the side. Hundreds of thousands of people throughout history have done such things. There's no shame in it. Anyone who says otherwise is probably selling something to help you 'live your dreams'--the ultimate pyramid scheme, because of course, with no market for what they're selling, they wouldn't be able to live their dream to begin with.

What do you want? What do you want your life to look like in two years; in three; in five? What are your dreams? Are they your own dreams, or did you borrow them from someone else?

What is your passion?

Jennifer 6:59 PM

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Friday, January 01, 2016

So 2015 is over and done with!

2015 was the year I spent money on my house, or so it seemed. A new water heater, a new kitchen furnace, and work on my boiler as well. I also acquired two new nephews! It has been fun watching them grow. :)

2015 started out with some difficulty, with the three weeks of winter in February, and having to turn down my heat to 55F when it was minus whatever outside. But the new kitchen furnace should really help or eliminate the problems I ran into last year, even though it cost a lot of money to install. In 2015, I also paid off my credit cards, which had been a huge goal for the past few years.

I acquired more than I really needed to acquire in 2015. I'll be working on that in 2016. I'll also be working on some of organizations tips I've come across, mostly for my crafting supplies. I hope to be crafting more in 2016, as well.

My only real goals for 2016 are pretty basic ones. I want to continue to utilize my exercise bike--5 miles a day during the week, 10 miles a day on the weekends/days I'm not at work. This has worked out well for me. I have my exercise bike set up in a permanent location, and I watch part of an episode of whatever I'm currently watching as I do my daily miles. Since I have very sedentary pursuits, along with the day job, I need something to combat that. So far, so good.

I want to save money. I have a goal, and a plan to achieve that goal. It's not an impossible goal, but it will take a bit of discipline to accomplish.

I would like to continue to work through my possessions and have a place for everything I do/everything I want to keep/everything I need to do what I love. I have a goal and a plan for that as well. I'm participating in the January Cure this year, and I'm also working through a couple of books I've found helpful.

I also want to realistically decide on what I can and cannot accomplish. I can't DO ALL THE THINGS. I have a day job. And a house. And I write books. And sometimes knit and crochet and weave. There are things I've kept that I keep intending to use or do or start that never get used or done or started, because I honestly don't have time or the inclination to start them. I honestly and realistically need to decide what to do with these things, and I need to get rid of whatever I realistically won't be able to accomplish in the next couple of years. (Or honestly admit the desire to do whatever-it-is has faded.)


Jennifer 6:10 PM

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Saturday, December 26, 2015

So another Christmas has come and gone, bringing with it lots of presents and oddly enough, warm weather.

One of those presents was a keyboard/case for my Kindle, which I'm typing on now. (And it just took me five minutes to realize that you have to hit the Function key to find the apostrophe; kind of awkward, but it's not that terrible, I guess. (Hitting the normal apostrophe key's spot is the Enter key, so if things look weird, that's why...)

But at least this one works, unlike the other keyboard I purchased and had to return a while back.

I don't think my Kindle will replace my netbook or new laptop for writing, but it would do in a pinch. As long as I didn't use so many apostrophes, or got used to the change.

(Also, I keep expecting the space below the keyboard to be a mouse.)

I've been quiet here this past year. Not because I've run out of things to say, but more because I don't feel the need to say everything in "public" anymore. This blog was once a rundown of my entire life; now it needs to be lesser in that regard, but also something else. I'm just not sure what yet.

Everyone seemed to enjoy their Christmas gifts; and since it was Harvey and Myles' first Christmas, there were a lot of gifts! I received a surprise gift of a knife handmade from a railroad spike from my sister; and also an InstantPot, which will be fun to try out. A few books I'll be reading over the next couple of weeks, some new pjs, new towels, and also a lovely antique clock (Dad repairs clocks, so I ask for one every year.)

It was a really nice, yet exhausting Christmas Day. I made mini cheesecakes (with goat cheese!) and peanut clusters with dried blueberries--I'll definitely make both again, as they turned out very well.

Now, we're coming up onto the New Year... my resolutions, or watchword this next year will definitely be a change...

Hope anyone reading this had a lovely Christmas.

Jennifer 10:13 AM

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Wednesday, December 09, 2015

It's been thirteen years since Freedom Day. Thirteen years! How time has flown. 

Jennifer 8:54 PM

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Saturday, November 14, 2015

Jennifer 2:48 PM

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Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Jennifer 10:22 PM

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Yesterday, the heating guys came and installed a wall furnace in the kitchen. It was a lot of money, but it will eliminate the issue I had with the unbalanced system last winter--since the kitchen will now have heat, I won't have that black hole of coldness in the entry room and throughout the rest of the house.

This is a good thing! And makes me feel much better about the impending winter.

The weatherpeople are calling for frost/freeze this weekend, so I'll be bringing in my plants, including the citrus, although they're not all going upstairs this year, I think. I have extra space in the library/office due to rearranging, so I'm planning to put one of them in that room. Even though it's unheated, it didn't get cold enough in there to kill my rosemary, so I assume the citrus will be OK in that room, too.

I've been off all week, and will be off until next Tuesday, so I've been busy getting stuff done around the house and relaxing, both of which are good things. :) I've also been working on Book 3 of the Abby Duncan series--which is going quite well so far.

I bought a small used freezer to replace the big freezer that died, and picked it up today. I'll be filling it up with the stuff I saved from the old freezer (it's all up at church at the moment.) It's not very big, but it will come in handy nonetheless. My fridge's freezer is jam packed with mostly blueberries and raspberries, so fitting anything in there has been quite tricky. I'm hoping with a smaller freezer, I'll not have the problem with losing stuff in the bottom, and never using stuff that I could have used. I threw out a lot from the big freezer, but most of what I tossed was years and years old.

It's my birthday today, too! And I'm 41 years old. I don't feel like I'm 41 years old. How time flies...

Jennifer 4:12 PM

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