Where Has The Time Gone?

I am having a hard time believing August is coming to an end as I wanted to get more done during the month.

Writing has not been very forthcoming the past few weeks as I’ve been rather distracted by sewing projects. Last weekend, I help my sister and brother-in-law paint the baby’s room then we went fabric shopping. My sister asked me to make curtains and a wall décor item for the room. We found a really nice Australian themed nursery print which made my sister extremely happy. The baby’s room has an Australian theme because my sister likes Koalas and both were living in Surfers’ Paradise when they met.

I have occasionally ventured out of the house to the local coffee shop and for write-ins but finding myself more interested in going home to work on sewing/housework than to write. Nevertheless, some writing has been accomplished – just not as much as usual.

At this point in time, I am hoping to get the baby’s stuff completely done by the end of August so I can spend September focused on the house, writing, and prep for NaNoWriMo. I really need to get all the housework done. I am completely exhausted and disillusioned by the decluttering process now. I just want it done so I can devote time to other things. I know I have said such before but distractions and the disillusionment got the best of me and held me back. I am hoping to move beyond these hindrances and forge ahead finally.

I’d also like to get a lot done because, soon, my nephew will be arriving and it would be best for the house to not be in chaos when he does.

In about two weeks, it will be the release day for Moments of Self: Volume One – consisting of five chapbooks that were previously released as 99 cent ebooks.

Later this week, there will be a few sewing-oriented posts as I forgot to write and post one last week for Baby Quilt #1. I have remembered to take pictures of the various stages with that project. I meant to take pictures of the beginning of the progress on the curtains and wall decor but did not remember in time. 😦 There is another sewing project in the works but it is a surprise so it will not be mentioned much until after October 27th aka day of the baby shower.

Simplicity Reveries: Living Small…Sort Of

While I have not been productive with the decluttering process, I have made a big step in downsizing. It may not seem like a lot to some people especially those who live a studio apartment. However, to someone who’s lived in a great deal of square footage and/or a recovering hoarder, this is a monumental accomplishment.

For the past two weeks, I’ve been having horrible evenings. I considered myself lucky if I could get 3 disjointed hours of sleep. There are many reasons for my lack of sleep. Most of them had to do with the house itself. The lack of proper foundation has led to a lifetime of instability for the house structure and an open invitation to creatures to nest under it.

Unfortunately, before I bought the house out of foreclosure as is, creatures had ripped up the underbelly to stay warm under the master bedroom and bath. I had tried to find a company to repair it but had no luck plus the crappy install of house made the search worse. There’s a 10 foot deep ditch at the center where the old single wide mobile home use to have its foundation. Typically this would be filled in or expanded on for a new house but the previous owners opted not to do this thus making future repairs difficult.

Right now, there’s a creature nesting under where the bed sits. It gave birth two weeks ago. Creatures also found their way back into the roof in spite of the repairs to it. Their primary nest is over the bed. It is also monsoon season which means the house shifts whenever it rains and all the smells from under the house seep up through to master bedroom and bathroom since the barrier is gone. Between the noise and odor, I could no longer sleep in that room. Factor in the hotter than the rest of the house in summer and colder in the winter problem, it was logical to move my bed elsewhere.

The bed is in the family room now along with my desk and my 3 piece living room set. The family room is about 400 square feet or so. It reminds me of a floor plan for a studio apartment. If I downsized my oversized living room furniture and got rid of the massive impractical built-in TV cabinet, I could easily see a bathroom and kitchen also fitting the space comfortably. There is plenty of space for all of my downsized possessions and all of the critical furniture to make it a practical live/work space. Realizing that I could definitely live in a space that small with all my possessions was shocking.

Considering how much clutter I had in November 2011, I have made huge strides in the decluttering process. I have always known it was a lot but kept focusing on the mountain still to tackle. This transition of space has made me look at my accomplishment with new eyes. Yes, I have a lot remaining but moving to small space isn’t as crazy as it once seemed. This transition is also letting me experience what it is like to have my whole life in close proximity. Looking at floor plans and imagining what it might be like is vastly different than living it.

I moved the bed into the family room Tuesday night and, since then, I have been sleeping well when I make the effort to go to sleep at a decent time. (For the record, 12 inch thick memory foam mattresses are a giant pain in the ass for one person to move.) I am prone to distraction so I often stay up too late. I do keep waking up earlier than I like. The family room’s windows face east and the sunrise keeps waking me up. I did put up blackout curtains but they cannot fully combat the onslaught of light brought by the sunrise.

The other space complication I have is the temptation of staying in bed to write, check email, and the like. It is immensely tempting but I am trying my best to have designated areas for each task thus leaving the bed only for sleeping and the occasional reading of books.

I am sure I will get use to the room’s quirks soon. Anubis, my feline overlord, is perplexed and amused by the change. Although, he frequently uses the bed as a place to play even when I am sleeping. Hopefully, he’ll get use to the change and see that area as being no different from the original location of the bed. The guinea pigs haven’t adjusted to the change either. They hear me turn over in bed in the morning and they start to wheek for breakfast even though it is 6am. Eventually, they silence and we all go back to sleep for a little longer.

While the new quirks are a tad bit annoying, they are better than the other ones so I am glad I made this change.

This coming week will have me at home more often so I hope to finish cleaning up the family room so I can start moving the possessions being kept into the space and make it my official home inside the house. Once I get the back rooms cleaned out, they will be shut off except for the bathroom as it is the closest one to the family room. The other (currently) functional bathroom is at the opposite end of the house.

The light at the end of the tunnel is getting ever closer for the decluttering process. I’d still like to move but that is a very distant dream right now as I have other things – like paying off all my debts – to tackle first.

Day 1 of Camp NaNoWriMo, July 2013 Edition

Camp has started out slowly for me. I find myself restless once more and desiring to work on other tasks. However, when I go to those tasks, I am entirely apathetic toward them. Nevertheless, Monday has been rather unproductive. The only non-writing task I completed, in my afternoon break from writing, was baking a dozen grain-free Banana Nut & Oat muffins.

Today’s writing was done with pen and paper. Staring at a computer screen was putting me to sleep. Most certainly not conducive to the writing process. I curled up in the broken over-sized recliner with my favorite brand of pen and a notepad then put forth five poems. Two for Xenium & Xyris, one each for Zephyr & Zinc, Elysian & Ether, and Nightmares & Nevermore.

My biggest issue with Monday has been a lack of sleep. I should have slept well last night as yesterday was long and kind of stressful. Family members came over to fix the swamp cooler – which broke the day before the 100+ degree mini heat wave – and they discovered several large holes in the roof. I wasn’t overly surprised by the roof damage considering two families of squirrels lived in attic space during the winter and spring. The squirrels still visit frequently. Over a few hours, the swamp cooler was fixed and the holes patched up. Once hail & monsoon season is done with, I will be getting a new roof. While I’ve known about the roof for quite awhile, its news proved to be exhausting and stressful.

My sleep was, once more, plagued by a common and problematic dream. It has been going on for over two years now. Its effects frequently show up in my poetry. I cannot shake the feelings and emotions it brings about. My mother says I am just too paranoid. It is difficult to be anything but paranoid when you constantly dream of unpleasant things and those dreams feel as real as breathing. I do not discuss them in depth with anyone out of concern I might jinx myself. Having aspects show up in verse is bad enough.

Perhaps the dream will leave me alone this evening, and allow for a very productive day tomorrow.

The day’s final word count total is 771, 36 words shy of the suggestion daily word count of 807 to meet my monthly goal of 25,000.

Camp NaNoWriMo April 2013 – Day 20

Once more I found myself out and about early to the torrid coffee shop. Decided I needed out of the house along with some time lost in the words. Left earlier than desired/needed for another errand I wanted to accomplish afterward. It was challenging to force the words out, and to make them linger long enough to fill the time. On the upside, I did get the majority of today’s to-do list done by noon. I will confess, however, I really need to stop getting mochas, chai, and pastries. I always feel sick a little later on yet I have not learned from these majorly disruptive discomforts.

I miss the days when the poetry sang so freely. Not sure what is wrong with this month but I hope they return to singing soon.

Today’s NaPoWriMo contribution is Roman, a piece for Kirsch & Kerosene.

Today was a better day for the breathing although it did not seem that way at first. I wonder if the better day is due to an experiment I implemented before going to sleep. Metal is one of the odder allergies I have. When I laid down this morning, the muscle spasms increased. It dawned on me that I was tucking myself into a bed full of metal – zippers on pillow covers, a metal bed frame, and an electric blanket. The electric blanket may also potentially explain why the spasms often increase when I curl up in the recliner with the other one. I stripped the pillows of their pillow covers and removed the electric blanket from the bed. Afterward, the muscle spasms decreased and I fell asleep very quickly – the first time in weeks.

While I’m still not feeling well, I am doing better. If metal is the cause of all this medical drama, I’m going be very annoyed especially at myself for not figuring it out sooner. I do miss my electric blanket though. The warm and toasty was so nice.

If my metal allergy has indeed become so severe, I’ll need to change out the bed frame soon. The guest bed has a wood frame and I think it can support a queen sized mattress. I’ll try a few more days sans the other metals to see if things improve further before I start moving around clunky mattresses and bed frames. I would love to get a new platform-style wood bed frame for myself – the currently owned bed frames require the use of a step stool in order for me to get in – but funds will not allow for such right now.

I really just wanted April for writing. I wasn’t expecting the words to fight me, and I certainly wasn’t anticipating all this health drama. Is it so wrong to want a normal month? A month where I can just write and write without issue?

Next month is a ‘focus on decluttering’ month. I hope that the words and my health are more cooperative for the June WriMo. On the decluttering front, today bid farwell to the last of the papers to be shredded. About two weeks ago, I picked up a flyer from the library about a paper shredding event today. Since my paper shredder is barely working after shredding half of the paper I collected during the decluttering process, I figured I should take the rest to the event. After filling one big black trash bag followed by a very short wait at the library, I got to say, ‘So long, papers!’ While I would have liked to use the shreds for mulch or papercrete, I was happy to get rid of them. It took me forever to shred the other half for a friend’s papercrete project. My paper shredder and I were not up to going through that again.

Today’s final counts are:
3 poems for Kirsch & Kerosene
2 poems for Obiter & Oleander
0 pieces for novels in verse
Some Free Writing
1192 total words
1 NaPoWriMo Post
1 Camp NaNoWriMo Post

Camp NaNoWriMo April 2013 – Day 16

Woke up 15 inches of snow but the street had been plowed which ruined the white effect. It was strange too as I do not recall the last time there was enough snow to warrant the plowing of the side streets. By 4pm, it had gotten just warm enough to dry up the street, the sidewalk I shoveled, and remove the last bits of snow I left on the car. Sadly, we’re expecting another 6+ inches this evening.

Aside from the shoveling of snow and the writing of today’s NaPoWriMo piece, Burlap, today was a lazy day. After I came in from the cold, I sat down with a book and joined quickly by Anubis who draped himself over my lap. He napped and I devoured the whole book. After I was done reading, I fell asleep. Suddenly, it was 4pm and time to get stuff done. So here I am, making an attempt at productivity. Not sure how long it will last or how productive I will actually be. I suspect that I will be curled up with Anubis and another book soon enough.

Anubis, on the other hand, is wide awake and running all over the house like a psychopath. This is primarily due to the squirrels nesting in the attic. Yes, there are squirrels in the attic, and the roof is due to be fixed during the next two months – hopefully. There are several babies who make a whole lot of noise thus tormenting Anubis greatly. He wants to hunt them but that darn ceiling is in his way. Poor Anubis, he just can’t win.

Today’s final counts are:
1 poem for Kirsch & Kerosene
0 poems for Obiter & Oleander
0 pieces for novels in verse
298 total words
1 NaPoWriMo Post
1 Camp NaNoWriMo Post