Thursday, November 21, 2013

Getting Organized - Memoir Collection

Bit by bit, I'm getting my new office organized. It's a slow process but I'm making progress. Tonight I got my memoir collection on the shelves organized by author. I know I have more books floating around the house to fit in here and I still have space for them. That is good.

I'm thinking I will put my writing books on the bottom shelf of my bookshelf. I expect the bookshelf will be full very soon. 

Memoir collection - or most of it. I'm sure there's more floating around the house.
Also in progress is bookshelf organization in the rest of the house. Our fiction, science fiction and non-fiction, poetry and drama collections are going on shelves in the upstairs hallway. The aviation and religion books are going on shelves downstairs.

There are books on other shelves in the house, too, that feel like they need their own space: horse books, Border Terrier books, James Herriot books, Harry Potter books, the Guardians of Ga'hoole collection, Laura Ingalls Wilder books, favorite books from my childhood, picture books, children's books and more!  In other words, we have a lot of books. I hope we can find them all a space and know where to find them later.

I'm not yet sure where my Jane Austen collection is going to fit. I have all of Austen's books that she is well known for plus Sandition, an unfinished novel started by Austen that her family published after her death (I admit, I have yet to read it!). About half of my Austen books, however, are non-fiction (biographies and the like) and new fiction written with Austen's characters like Mr. Darcy in them. My collection is small, but I like it!

I think this is a good time to state that, in my humble opinion, the BBC production of Pride and Prejudice is the best EVER. All six hours of it. It's well worth watching! And Colin Firth is the best Mr. Fitzwilliam Darcy EVER. Thank you very much.

Here's a lovely image of Colin Firth as Darcy to end this post and the day. 

Good night and Sweet Dreams (of Darcy, if you are lucky)

Colin Firth as Fitzwilliam Darcy in BBC's Pride and Prejudice.

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Smile yourself Happy

There's a saying I've heard, I don't know where it originated, it's something like "you can't buy happiness...but you can buy chocolate and that's pretty close!"

I like that saying. And I like chocolate. And I've been feeling the need for some happiness lately. So today I walked into one of my favorite shops in Northfield, The Measuring Cup. It's a kitchen store full of fun gadgets and kitchen essentials like pots and pans. They also carry BT McElrath chocolates like my favorite Salty Dog and another I like, Super Red. And, I discovered today, The Measuring Cup carries the cutest little appetizer tongs with little "hands" to grab whatever little treat you are serving.

I saw those little tongs and smiled. And, well, I bought two of them because they are just so cute and very useful, too!

Buying the chocolate and the tongs didn't exactly buy me happiness. But the thought of eating my chocolate and just looking at the cute little tongs sure made me smile. And the actual act of smiling, I've read, can actually make a person feel happy.

I'm thinking the actual act of eating my chocolate will make me smile, too.

You know, I'm feeling pretty happy right now. Take a moment to smile - really smile -  and feel happy, too.


Monday, November 18, 2013

A New Space

We've been doing a lot around our house lately. We replaced a terribly worn out carpet in our living room. We had our friend, Michael, do some painting for us upstairs because, well, if we had to do it all the painting would not get done in a timely manner (case in point, the upstairs hallway Michael painted for us in a day was a project that I intended to start, oh, seven years ago and never got around to). With all the painting, we've been sorting and cleaning and donating things that we no longer use. It's a good feeling to get things out of here - but it's also kind of disruptive and unsettling.

We've reorganized three rooms and our upstairs hallway in the last month. Well, I can't say that we're totally reorganized quite yet, but we're getting there!

Rose's room was first. Her once pink and purple walls with floral border are now a lovely turquoise. She moved out her little girl looking things and now has a room that looks like a high school student sleeps in it instead of a grade schooler.

Ryan had been sleeping in a small bedroom that was his nursery when he was a baby. The room was cute with yellow walls and a blue sky with stars border - but hardly fitting for our 11 year old who likes reptiles and bugs. We also wanted to move Ryan into a bigger bed and wanted to get rid of some things he no longer used. So, we loaded up Ryan's bed and brought it over to my brother's house. My nephew, Liam, now has a bunk bed and toy storage unit and is one happy four-year-old!

As for Ryan's room with the yellow walls - we painted the walls the same color as my office. And my office? We painted those walls a nice shade of blue that Ryan liked. And, yep, we switched rooms.

My former office is now Ryan's bedroom.
And Ryan's old room? It's now my new office.

I am a bit out of sorts sitting here in my new office. It's mostly empty. It feels weird in here. There's no pictures on the walls. No books on the shelves. I figured out where I want my desk (in a corner, at an angle, facing the door) but am not sure if I like my bookshelf where it is. I need to move one of my file cabinets into my closet but am not sure where the other one will fit. I still have tons of sorting to do to make sure I don't move clutter in to my new space. I think what that means is a lot of my office stuff is going to sit in the hallway for awhile so I can move things in a bit at a time.

I'm not super duper good at big transitions. I liked my old office. It was cluttered but comfortable. Now I have a new space and don't quite know what to do with it. I am not sure where to put things. I'm worried the sun will fade my books. I worried I won't be able to see my computer screen when the sun shines through the window. And yet I'm worried there won't be enough light when the sun goes down.  And, well, I could go. Suffice it to say, I can worry pretty well sometimes :-)

So, I remind myself, I will figure out where things go and how they will work in time. Worry isn't going to help me figure anything out or stop the sun from doing what the sun does.

Maybe it's the lack of control over the sun and everything else that got me to the point I'm at right now - I'm sitting in my office at my desk and I'm organizing something much more manageable than an empty office space and the thoughts in my too-full-of-thoughts head -- words.

I'm writing.

And it feels good.

Almost empty new office space. Much to do to figure out my new space but the important things are here -  my desk and my dog.

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

First Tracks

We got a couple of inches of snow in the night. And while I'm certainly not ready for snow with things like coats and gloves and snow boots for the kids, I managed to forget how unprepared I am for the season when I saw the sun shining on the snow this morning. Sunshine on fresh snow makes for an absolutely beautiful morning!

And, even though I had to get going and start my work day, the beautiful snowy morning kept begging me to grab my fatbike, Bear, and go for a ride.

So I did.

It was a short ride, less than a mile. And I was quickly reminded of how much work it is to pedal through fresh snow. I feel totally out of shape and I'm tired now (and running behind schedule). But, boy, it sure was worth it to get out and make the first fatbike snow tracks of the season.