Made it!

Yes! I made it through January. It wasn’t looking good. There were many days when I wanted to curl up in a ball and cry and sleep. I questioned everything, from does my husband still love me to do my kids still need me. It was rough. But I made it! This is all part of my life now, this anxiety and the messes it makes in my mind. It often wants to ruin things, but I fight back.

I went to a party with my hubby. There were about 4 maybe 5 couples I knew, the rest I didn’t. It was loud, awkward and …. too much. After over an hour, we bailed and headed for home. Not because we didn’t want to stay and visit, or meet new people, but because it was just too much. Those of you with anxiety will understand and those of you who don’t, won’t and that’s ok.

On a more positive note, I read an awesome book called ‘You can buy Happiness and it’s Cheap’, by Tammy Strobel.

What amazing insight she has. I will say she is a proponent of tiny living and downsizing and minimalizing, and all those things that make most people shudder. But not me. The simplicity calls to me. From the time I first read ‘Little House on the Prairie’, I have been fascinated with living in a small cabin in the woods. I hope someday in the not too distant future to be able to realize that dream. In the meantime, I’ve gotten caught up in the ‘stuff’of life.

Do you have extra stuff? I can guarantee it, because its just a part of life that we’ve learned to live with. It represents status, wealth, prosperity and all those other things that we have been lead to believe matter. They don’t. Ask someone who’s survived a fire how much their stuff mattered versus surviving it. Sure you’ll miss those baby photos and your favourite things, but in the end, you’re glad you all made it safe. It’s the people around you – your wife/husband, kids, pets, friends ie people you have relationships with, that matter the most. Sure there are days I want to run away and hide, but I never want to do it alone, I want my hubby and my kids with me!

The other thing she mentioned that challenged me, was the idea of getting out of debt and staying out- thus the tiny house idea. I LOVE the idea of no longer being indebted to a big bank and forking out our paychecks to a big corporation. But how realistic is that? Very. Yes this book is American, but the principle is the same. Don’t spend money you don’t have. Our ancestors certainly had to deal with this reality. The harsher side of it is that people died from not having money to pay for Doctors, or Food or due to the elements. But what if the world didn’t work that way? That is a very big pipe dream, but all dreams have to start somewhere. So what if everyone started on a small scale buy not living beyond their means and getting themselves out of debt? Well, that is a very hard thing indeed. But it has become a goal for me.

Another thing she mentioned was having meaningful work. I do the work I do, because I have 4 children still at home, a mortgage to pay and bills and debt and food and all the myriad of other things that go along with life. But what would it be like to do what I love doing? I have spent some time this week thinking about that. What do I want to do with my life? The sad thing is, I have no idea exactly what I’d like to do. I have some ideas, but how they would manifest themselves into work, I don’t know. I love food! I love eating the things I’ve created, and serving it to people, and teaching them how to nourish themselves properly. I like making soup for my friends when they’re sick ( ask them about my green soup ) and I love the idea of spending my winters knitting, sewing and writing around a wood stove while a blizzard rages outside, and then a nice walk in the fresh snow. I love the idea of having a big garden that I use to feed us through the winter with some left over to help those who might need it.

I would love to have a place where people come to get rest and fresh air and a ready ear to listen, while I fill them with food. But none of those things top my desire to be the best mom ever. It’s what I’ve always wanted to do. Do I do it perfectly, heck no. But my goal still stands and I hope that when I’m gone, my kids will have the knowledge and hold it close and never wonder whether they were loved, or wanted, and that those I’ve helped will be able to offer them comfort because I gave comfort to them. The world is a very harsh place, but I want my place to be a place of refuge, and warmth and caring for all who come here.

This year, my husband and I will celebrate 25 years of marriage. We have been a couple for 30 years. I was 17 when I met him and just past 18 when we moved in together against our family’s wishes. We’ve struggled, and fought, but most of all we’ve loved. There were many long days and nights when we were all each other had, and I think that made us stronger. There are countless days that I wouldn’t be able to get through if I didn’t have my wonderful hubby to lean on. There are often days when I choose to love him even though he’s pissed me off (less for him I’m sure ๐Ÿ˜‰ ). But we’ve stuck together through it all and I can’t wait to see what the next 25 years will bring us.

I’m sure there will be many more challenges, but there’s no one I’d rather have at my side.

Alright, now one to some nitty-gritty. The all important menu!!!

Last night ( Saturday) :we enjoyed a Rosemary and Thyme roast of pork with boiled potatoes, stir-fried leeks with mushrooms and a lovely salad made by my daughter.

Sunday: ย Spanish rice with beans and salad

Monday: Stew and cornbread

Tuesday: Tuna patties on lettuce with veggies

Wednesday: Chick peas and veggies in Butter Chicken sauce served over Rice Vermicelli

Thursday: come on, you can all answer this one by now (lolol) PASTA!!!

Friday: Leftovers if there are some, or hot dogs, or pizza- something will get served, just not sure what yet.

Enjoy your week! Stay tuned for more exciting events as I delve more into my ‘stuff’ and get rid of things I don’t need and venture forth on doing some things I do need- like more writing!!!



New year, new beginning

Tis January, the time for resolutions and plans to make this year better than last year. I’m not doing that, so if you wanted that info, you’ll be disappointed.

Instead, I will be continuing in same vein as I have been. Why? Because it’s mostly working for me. I will continue to try new recipes and sharing ones that I think are outstanding. I will continue to learn new skills so that I am prepared when the opportunity to change our circumstances comes. I will continue to be the best wife, mother and friend that I can be.

Am I perfect, or is my situation? Far from it. It never will be, but I don’t want perfection. Perhaps that makes me strange, but that’s how it is. Yes I like some predictability, but I also like the challenge of new things too. Whether it’s striving for great food combos, or writing that elusive story that’s finally going to get the interest of an agent or publisher. These things keep me alive!

This year, the hubby and I will celebrate 25 years of marriage, and that is something that I’m very proud of! There were many times along the road that we could have given up and packed it in, but we strive every day to keep it together, not for the kids sake, but our own. It’s a choice on both our parts to choose to keep working and striving for a better marriage but he’s worth it, and so am I. That is something that I have recently accepted- that I am worth fighting for, that I am important, and special. It wasn’t something I grew up knowing, in fact it was the opposite. But it’s something that is a very big part of me and learning that fact has left me free to be a better person.

I watched a show on Netflix (yes we finally go it) called the Minimalists. It’s mostly about being happy with less and not succumbing to commercialism. I had been aware of it, but after watching, I found myself noticing more the advertising etc that is shoved our way constantly. But how freeing to delete that email, or turn away from those “deals”! That too was freeing! Not that I was a mindless sheeple not thinking for myself, but taking a good look at what I had, and what I needed and making a conscious choice to be happy with it. It’s not as easy as you think! There were lots of times I wanted to buy something for myself, but then I reminded myself of how I wanted to only buy things I LOVED or NEEDED. I had to examine WHY I felt I wanted to buy something and how it would alter my life if I did buy it. I am happy to say that I replaced some baking dishes and bought myself a new flannel shirt with colours in it that I love. Yah me! I may not have a ton of clothes, or other ‘stuff’, but I make daily use of it all.

I wish you luck this year and you make your way through it. Be kind to yourself, and others. I look forward to sharing this journey with you!

Looking back

Well, the toothpaste didn’t happen. There is no outstanding reason why it didn’t’, just simply didn’t feel like it. So I caved and bought another tube of my favorite Green Beaver toothpaste. It’s strange when you switch from reg toothpaste to ‘green’ toothpaste. It does have a slightly different feel to it, but once you make the switch and then run out and have to use your husband’s regular toothpaste, the difference becomes more dramatic. For me, it’s like going from a nice baking soda type clean ( with lots of mint) to washing with foam. I feel like I’m frothing at the mouth!

I am also on week 2 of using my own shampoo bar of soap. I love it. The only thing I don’t like, and it’s purely my own preference, is the scent. I made it more manly thinking the guys would be using it and was going to make some girly smelling shampoo for my daughter and I. That didn’t happen, so we are using the guys soap.

I am loving the new laundry soap formula I made and think that this will be my go to from now on. I will have to have a powder for camping and to send the boy to camp with, but other than that, this is a keeper. The dishwasher soap is another problem. We’re getting film on the dishes, which to me isn’t so bothersome, but it doesn’t look great. I’ve done some more research and will be trying a dry one instead of a liquid one so that I can add the citric acid and see if that helps.

Several story ideas have taken hold in my thoughts and I would love the chance to get them down on paper. For now they reside in my head, along with the other thoughts that jumble around. They’ve decided to be patient and work together which is lovely ๐Ÿ™‚ I haven’t managed to write in several weeks, but since we have a rainy weekend ahead of us, I forsee the possibility that I can accomplish that goal- unless I fall asleep, which is a distinct possibility. It’s been that kind of week, and a nap would not be a terrible thing, right?

Once of my favorite things to do is pretend shop. There’s no pressure when you pretend shop. You have no budget, don’t have to worry about whether things fit or not, nor any of the other things that get in the way of normal shopping. This time around, I was doing pretend tiny house shopping. I was trying to pick cabinets, flooring, and colours. I also looked at some dishes and tried to decide which ones I’d be interested in. I’m trying to be economical about it since money will be an issue, but also trying to solidify a colour scheme. Luckily, both hubby and I prefer neutrals, but he prefers light wood and I prefer grey/black, so it should be interesting to see how we mend the two ideas.

For those that want our menu for this week, here ya go:

Saturday : Burgers/ meat on a stick, veggies

Sunday: Tandori chicken with rice/riced cauliflower, and cuke/tomato salad

Monday: Chicken soap ( or maybe its a combo of chicken and turkey) with crackers/buns

Tuesday: BBQ chicken legs, baked potatoes, and spinach salad

Wednesday: Lemon pork tenderloin, raw veggies, left over rice/potatoes/cauliflower

Thursday : everyone together now- Pasta!

Friday: (gag) french fries and BBQ hotdogs and veggies

What’s new an exciting in your world?

Where to start?

So I think after pondering things this week, the best place to start would be to go through my stuff.

It is a daunting task. Not cause I have alot of stuff, I don’t, not in comparison to other people, but most of my stuff has sentimental value. I’ve been watching past seasons of Tiny Home Nation, and it has been terribly helpful. The exercises he makes them go through are the same ones I’m going to have to do. I will have to decide if I really need 3 cabillion knitting needles regardless of who them came from. I also will need to go through my knitting patterns, my sewing supplies, my scrapbooking …

So today, I got started. I went through some scrapbooking things and decided that space will be at a premium at some point, and I don’t need scrapbooks. That’s not to say that I’m giving up my pictures, cause I’m not. I will just start the long process of scanning them and keeping them in a hard drive. Those Hd’s or sticks will stay in my fireproof box and will be pared down from the rubbermate tote that they currently reside in. Next weekend, I have a friend coming to help me sort out my scrapbooking things and see if I can get a bit of $$ for it by reselling. I have also started going through my pattern books and deciding which ones are important, and which are not based on their versatility.

Sewing stuff may happen this week, and I would like to get it down to one smallish box, not including my fabric as its in a box under the bed, but should be mostly used up by christmas.

After that, I’ll tackle the clothes again, although I am really good at purging what I’m not wearing. I’ve been going through my books and am down to just my 2 fav authors, and even then, I’m trying to buy ebooks, but ya know, sometimes, you just want to hold a book :/

So there’s my tasks for this week!

Happy Fall and good luck with your purging! Let me know how its going ๐Ÿ™‚