Getting It Together and My Dream

It feels like I am getting my crap together, finally.

I put together a two week plan to get this house in order. Yesterday’s agenda included straightening my desk:

It feels really great to have this space back in workable order. And because the kitchen was on Wednesday’s agenda, I can show it off, as well (excuse the paint brush and lawnmower spark plug on the kitchen counter. They sort of live there at the moment until J can deal with them):

That’s all I’ve got so far, though the laundry is coming along as well.

As well as doing all this, I am also trying to get my photo portfolio put together a little more prettily. I have a portfolio hosted right now at carolineellisonprice.com. I want to move everything back over to WordPress, though, and I probably want to move everything back to my .photography domain. My dream is to maybe, just maybe, shoot weddings someday. I am not ready to even second-shoot at the moment, but I want my photos to be ready so when I am ready I have it all put together to show other photographers and maybe eventually, potential clients.

I’ve told myself for a long time that I shouldn’t want to be a full-time photographer for a living. I’ve been lying to myself for a long time. It’s ridiculous. I should stop doing that. I will do so, now. I want to be a full-time photographer and I want that to be the job that gets me off disability someday.

I’ve long gone back and forth about this idea. First, there’s the inherent self-esteem issues I deal with. Then, there’s the fact that, despite some folks seeming to like my photography, I’m a real critic of it. Then, there’s the whole fact that I shoot Fuji and the world of professional photographers seems to be hooked to Canon or Nikon and being different intimidates me. Which is even more utterly ridiculous given that I’ve done things differently my whole entire life. And it’s also ridiculous since I know for a fact that there’s a lot of pro photographers who do shoot Fuji. Just none in my town, that I am aware of.

But, there it is. I want to be a photographer. I want to make people feel happy as they remember their special times by looking at my pictures.

And because I have just spoken my dream aloud, I have to go hide under my pillow for a little while.

Clutter Be Gone

I wish I had a nickel for every time I started out a day with the resolve I feel right now: It’s time to get this house in serious order.

To give you a taste of what I am talking about, this vision currently greets you when you look to the left after just entering our front door:

My desk is that space in the bay window area. I probably haven’t been able to sit in the chair next to my desk for over a month…well over, now that I think about how long that box has been on the stool.

No doubt I will look back on this post in which I am currently embarrassing myself and wish I hadn’t hit “publish.” C’est la vie.

This embarrassment is my attempt to get my rear in gear and clean up this house. For, sadly, the majority of the junk cluttering up these spaces is mine. I am really, really bad about not putting something in its proper place when I am done with a thing. Now, admittedly, this is partly because I haven’t taken the time to properly organize this house. It desperately needs that from the top down. I am going to get things in order. It’s going to happen.

Anyway, after saying I wasn’t going to post the white room, here it is. I love it. J didn’t paint the trim….it was already white in this room and the dining room, even though we have the wood trim in the other parts of the first floor:

I love this space’s energy now that it has been painted. It feels like ours.
Note the big trash bag on the coffee table. That has only been there since this morning. Because this is how I work: I start something, get distracted like I did when I decided to write this post, and leave stuff half finished. This is how my messes are made. I know this. I also cannot wait for this room to be painted white, leaving the wood trim as-is. Will really be my sanctuary then.
Note the dehumidifier on the counter. O and I were sick at least three weeks ago and J brought this out. I took it to the counter from the family room and just left it there, well over two weeks ago. What’s up with that? And you only get the photo of this side of the room. The photo of the side of the room with the kitchen table, which has a doozy of a mess on it at the moment, included some of my unmentionables from the laundry, which I prefer not to broadcast all over the internet. 🙂
And here we have what was the cleanest room in the house for a while, the dining room. That is, until we painted and I took things out of the family room. And then the boys decided it was time to play Connect Four. And we ate breakfast in here a few times. My sweater….why is it here? I have no idea.

*Sigh*

I need a better system. And to be fair to myself, there’s no telling how long my thyroid has been in a hyper state….probably a while given my energy levels. But I think there’s no small amount of ADD going on in my brain or something because looking over these photos, everything here is either mine directly or something I am responsible for putting away. The boys are good at keeping up with their things, thankfully, with a little guidance.

It’s time to Google home organizational systems and methods. I can do better than this.

 

The Bus Stop and Other Miscellany

O and I go out every day to get the boys off the bus at 2:45. It’s earlier than the bus actually gets there, but it gives O some time to run around. He has a “hill,” a favorite spot in the yard. It’s actually part of a buried giant magnolia tree root, but he loves it something fierce.

Running Down O’s Hill
Investigating a Rock Down the Hill
Showing Mom the Rock
Thoughtful O

When the school year started and I realized that I would have to go to the end of the driveway because giant bushes block the view to our front door, I kind of dreaded it. I wasn’t sure I would have it in me to get out there every day and just stand and wait, and I was worried about forgetting someday and making them ride back to school to go to after-school. But it turns out that the bus stop routine has been the one constant for O and I all year long. Early in the school year when O was younger and I wasn’t sure I could keep him from running to the end of the driveway, O would ride his tricycle every. single. day. He learned to ride his tricycle, in fact, because of the bus stop routine. The bus stop has been our constant since August and I’ve come to be thankful for that time.

In other news, we finally figured out why I’ve been so. tired. all. the. time. I’ve made sleeping until 11 a.m. a regular occurrence, and it’s not really associated with my depression. My thyroid levels have been off again, meaning I’ve been getting too much medicine. So, now I have to alternate different doses every day. Fun stuff. At least there was an answer with an attemptable solution.

Big boys have standardized testing starting tomorrow, so their teachers sent home instructions that they are to be outside playing and exercising as much as possible every day. Thankfully, the boys are on board with this idea.

We have started the major overhaul of the new house, the overhaul we have known was coming eventually ever since we moved in last June… painting the inside walls. We went with Valspar’s “Ultra White.” I got a bee in my bonnet about it on the Tuesday of Spring Break, and sent J to the store to gather all the necessary supplies. But then I ran out of steam, what with the thyroid issue, and J had to finish the job I started. We have one room done– the family room. I love the color and how much brighter it makes the room. I cannot wait to have the rest of the house done, but it will have to wait until we have help to get it done because I can’t guarantee I won’t get in the middle of it again and flake out. Anyway, no pictures of the finished room until I get the house straightened up, which is not today.

Twelve Years

First Date Weekend, September 2003

J and I got married twelve years ago today.

This adventure of marriage has been incredible. That summer of 2003, when we spent hour upon hour chatting away online, and then on the phone, late into the night… Who would have known then that we would, against the odds, build a life together? It was so obvious after that first weekend that we had to explore the possibilities. Less than an hour after this photo was taken on a Sunday in late September of 2003, J told me that he loved me for the first time.

This photo sits on my desk now, a daily reminder to cherish this most sacred relationship in my life, a reminder of how I couldn’t always take for granted that this marriage would even happen. J lived in Iowa, and I was here in Georgia. I remember well, when I stop to think about it, how it just seemed impossible that we might merge our lives.

I don’t often get out the binders I made for J, that first Christmas we were dating, of that first six months of our chat histories– those early words we sent to one another, saved in perpetuity from email and chat history printings. But very occasionally, when we do take the opportunity to read those early writings, the tingle in my heart still comes back. I had no idea when I gave J those binders that I was giving myself, as well, the gift of remembering verbatim the soft timidity, the sweet compassion, and the quietly budding romance to relive time and again through reading those words to each other.

So, this anniversary, this some thirteen-odd years after this relationship started, I will spend much of the day with our little O. I may try to dig out those binders in some spare moments, and remember the sweetness of those early days, the sweetness that is, indeed, still there.

I love you, J. >:D<

Early Mornings

For a while now, I have struggled to stick to any semblance of a routine. At first, I chalked it up to depression. But now, lack of routine has become a thing of its own to conquer.

So here I am. I got up at 5 a.m. this morning in an attempt to jump start routine of some sort again.

I’ve always, always been a morning person. Except for those college days when I would survive on three or four hours of sleep because it was the social thing to do, staying up late. I still got the most done in the early mornings, so I still got up relatively early, even then.

Lately, though, on days when I had no other responsibilities, I have slept far too much, far too late into the morning to say here how late I have been sleeping. It’s embarrassing. It’s time to stop that habit.

I love early mornings, preferably before 6 a.m., because no one else in my house likes them. No one else is awake at that time. P is an early riser and L is too on the weekends, but not this early. I can have the house to myself and I can think clearly without little boy noise convoluting those thoughts. Occasionally, I can do yoga or at least stretches.

Early morning is a good time to remember that it’s okay that my life doesn’t resemble what I thought it might once upon a time. It’s a good time of day to remember that I do, indeed, have things to contribute to the world even if it doesn’t take the form of a paid job. The depression is far less in the early morning– the day holds hope.

I guess that’s what it boils down to, with me and early mornings. It’s easier for me to have hope in the early morning. There are possibilities, even if I can’t put my finger on what they are exactly.