Today, I was productive.
Yesterday I was constantly convincing myself it was okay to do NOTHING. Be a human being, not a human doing.
I watched Russian Doll, I watched Sex Education (both amazing). I snacked and I napped. I consider it the equivalent to plugging myself in to recharge.
What prompted this was my husband being out-of-town.
I feel guilty just ‘being’ otherwise.
That’s not on him. It’s a psychological glitch.
I can’t even pee at work without telling myself, “Just get this one thing done, then you can go.”
So, in spite of doing nothing of import yesterday (production wise) I accomplished so very much in allowing myself to DO nothing.
This is not the topic of my post though.
I have been COLD! It’s been freezing at night and our home doesn’t exactly remember the sunlight hours.
We have a wood burning stove and a (what seems to me) a circa 1970 hall heater.
Said heater has been groaning and moaning and whirring pathetically. If it were a pet, I’d be doing what it trusted me to do.
However, shivering on Friday, I decided to try to ‘fix’ the heater.
I figured, it probably just needs cleaning. I mean, I could clearly see dust abundant.
I unscrewed it – (after shaving the caulking off the edges) and to my surprise, it wasn’t independent of the grate.
Grab something, hold it up while I work on it.
Scooted to the bathroom and didn’t want it hanging from the wires too long – first thing I came upon was a soap dispenser.
Back to my task. Cleaned the fan – dusted the wires turned it back on and … flames.
After I closed it up, I tried to turn it on again thinking (in my official capacity as not only a HVAC professional but also an electrician) that it would work.
Didn’t even turn on.
Was chatting with my husband while he was at the airport.
Me: I f***** something up, I guess when I was messing with the heather it blew the fuse in the bathroom
Me: Only just realized it, I tried to plug something in
Me: NVM fixed it.
Yeah – I only had to press ‘reset’. *groan*
I shivered the night away and spent my lazy day bundled in bed with Netflix.
Today I was determined but depleted.
I scavenged the land for twigs with a bucket like a babushka. Hunched over, head covered, layers upon layers – selecting the choice sticks.
No newspapers or firestarters.
Into the ‘office’.
Twigs and file folders!
Got that started and inserted the wood that doesn’t ‘catch’ alone and …
This is what I’m looking at now. SUCH a relief!
That being said, I used to think I could do Naked and Afraid. After a weekend of freezing temps and no ability to light a fire IN A WOOD BURNING STOVE, I acquiesce. How the hell do they manage to start a fire and keep it going in the rain???????? How do they survive nights completely naked in freezing temps????? As I mentioned to my friends, if I WERE on naked on afraid, I would have tapped out in my own living room completely clothed that night.
But, I kept trying. And hung in there. (Like, where am I going to go? lol)
And the fire is still roaring and I still feel rested. Win!
“Mom, we can’t LIVE like this!”
My only child put his hands on my cheeks with sincerity in his eyes …
“It’s 72 degrees!!!!”
His hand were freaking cold.
Ok, I know – there are those of you living in places where you slip and slide attempting to drive to work – on black ice and through blinding snow. There are those of you whose pipes no doubt shall freeze – whose breath shall be visible in the chilled air.
I get it.
But how many of you have had an 80 degree drop? And it’s not even Winter yet for crying out loud!
I peeled my eyelids open this morning and seriously wondered if Fall could write me a note to get me out of work.
“To Whom It May Concern,
Amanda was unable to come in to work today due to the complete inability to remove herself from the barely comforting ‘comforter’ and exposing herself to the 50 degree temperatures within her home.
That wasn’t going to fly probably.
I braved it … and when I say ‘braved it’ I mean, I slid an arm out of the blanket next and grabbed for my sweatshirt. Slid a leg out and poked my foot into my Ugg boot – then had to actually sit up to accomplish the same for the other foot.
Butters has suddenly become a snuggler – surprise, surprise – and she lay all cute and curled up and watched me with feigned interest as I removed myself from my bed, bit by bit.
Oh how I wished I could turn on the heater! It was 50 degrees in the house (I discovered this as I briskly trotted back to the bedroom holding a microwaved cup of yesterdays coffee.)
My pilot light went out when I accidentally shut off the gas thinking it was the water main a few months back. (Remember that? Yeah well, now we have repercussions don’t we?) Although, this does put me in a position of not breaking my annual tradition of lighting the flipping pilot and my friends and followers laughing at me doing it.
You would think I’d remember how I did it the past year – but every time (4 years now) it’s a YouTube tutorial then an ‘Ok, here we go!’ big ass event.
Feel like a hero in a movie – “I’m goin’ in!” Braving the gas and the metal and the flames to bring warmth to my little family.
Butters feigns interest for that activity too.
It’s always super rewarding when I do accomplish it though.
Speaking of accomplishing things …
I think I mentioned in my last post that we get wind.
No, not that kind.
Bitter, crazy wind that snaps and huffs and puffs and blows things down.
This weekend it was my shed. Sharp metal panels were hanging dangerously – all I could think was that if I didn’t get out and do something about it, a piece was going to completely abandon the structure and go slicing off into the air and decapitate something.
So outside I went – early in the morning with my galvanized steel wire and pliers and proceeded to stitch it together the best I could. My fingers almost needed stitching – with the flapping metal panels snagging me as I attempted to secure the pieces together, I cut myself several times. It was probably a two-man job in such weather conditions and there were zero men – only me – (I have a new saying by the way “Don’t send a man in to do an Amanda job” – that was coined at work. Lol)
Anyway – Butters, again – is busy feigning interest – I think she was just glad I was outside with her somewhere other than the porch.
She abandoned me mid project to sniff around and bark at flying debris.
I kept stitching.
Don’t know why I bothered – this morning it was all sharply hanging and dangerous again.
I’ll probably get home to find a pair of ruby slippers sticking out from beneath it – if they’re fleece lined, I’ll keep ’em.
It’s freezing in my house. A chilly 70 degrees. Yes, that’s cold. When you’re used to temps in the 120’s.
I can barely feel my toes. I refuse to turn the heater up – I just got the electricity bill down from the Summer. I don’t need the gas bill competing with it.
Since my son was church mousing around the house at 4 in the morning, I’m sure I won’t be seeing his bright-eyed face until it’s almost time to go to my parents house this afternoon.
So, Butters and I have been watching the Thanksgiving Day parades and pacing. Mostly I’m pacing. She’s relocated a few times.
I can never sit still.
I go from room to room – swipe my email update – check Facebook – go to another room – make a mental list of everything that needs to be done in said room, then leave it.
I’m bathed – dressed – and bored.
I’m sure there’s someone out there completely inundated with people and activity that would love to switch places with me.
They would know better what to do with boredom. Not me. I am restless!
Unmotivated and restless.
It’s a really bad combination of things to be. I could have had at least 3 projects crossed off my list right now if I had a teeny tiny bit of motivation in me this morning.
I think by typing I feel like I’m getting something accomplished – besides, it keeps my fingers from freezing.
Speaking of fingers. Yesterday I managed to staple my finger …
I happened to have two people in my office at the time – and much to their amusement I did the ‘Is it bad?? OMG, I don’t want to look … IS it bad?? Look … no, wait – don’t look’ thing. All whilst giggling.
One visitor took photos while the other said “Oh, yeah, that’s in there.” Then proceeded to leave me.
Not before announcing to my boss in the room across from us, “She stapled her finger,” to which there was no response.
I think he’s pretty used to hearing anything when it comes to a) Announcements (muttering, unprovoked fits of laughter, cursing) from my office b) Updates from other people as to what Amanda has managed to do now. He’s desensitized. Can’t blame him really.
Probably he managed an eyeroll – maybe even sighed a little.
I was laughing and wondering if the femoral artery got anywhere near the finger tip – (It could! Well … if you’re scratching your leg) then just bravely strolled to the kitchen, grabbed a bandaid from the friend that left, turned on the faucet and yanked the offending staple from my sore phalange.
It really wasn’t bad at all. Provided a little excitement on a day that was crawling by. (I swear, the clock was taking one tick forward and two ticks back!)
Much like today. Some teeny bopper is singing with Ninja Turtles on the tv. Butters is sleeping in the living room and I’m shivering at the kitchen table.
For the sake of not becoming hypothermic – I shall bid you all a Happy Thanksgiving (And Hanukkah!) and start one of my projects.