This is basically how I feel and what I believe in a nut shell.
Please watch and actually take a moment to see how materialism has shaped your life. I was forced to look at my ways, and I am better for it. At least, I feel better and I am happier.
I am free from the grip of corporations, and I strive to become even more free each and every day.
I know I have been missing from this blog, I have been working super hard on our renovation Project 1923. I have been without a kitchen and a real bed for quite some time now, and I think it has help to change my perspective. Simpler is better and easier for me. Oh, and we no longer watch TV……that’s huge.
If you want to get the trash out of your head, turning the TV off is essential. Try it for a week…. I dare you. For serious down time, too tired to move or think down time, I have Netflix. Not the greatest selection, but the documentaries seem to suit me well at the moment.
Bit by bit, I am applying what I preach to my own life. I have tamed the old wild-ass-consumer I used to be. Curbed the hoarder I became as a result my shopping and now I think more clearly. Literally I pause before each buying decision. This solidifies my desire to use less, have less, and want less. Not buying is incredibly empowering. It truly is.
Just recently I’ve caught myself walking away from negative conversations. That’s right, just walking away…..I don’t care if someone thinks I am a weirdo. Who cares what anyone thinks anyway? ( you never know what is in their mind, so quit thinking about it. It’s trash thinking, a waste of your own time and mind power.) Be yourself, be kind, and do your best. It is that simple.
As far as politics go, I have to turn it WAY off. I am very opiniated about my political beliefs, however, I am never going to change a right-winged mentality. I have learned that lesson and want no part of it. It’s all trash- doesn’t accomplish a thing. I am liberal at heart, and I have no problems with that. ( good thing I have a handful of political friends on line – or on-demand if you will – it’s nice to touch base without all the drama. )
Life is still hectic.
Our move has proven to be a great decision. We love our new town and our neighborhood. It’s diverse, interesting and people are super friendly. The house was a bargain, and the work we are doing to it is rewarding. I have learned many skills and am stretching my imagination. The satisfaction from a completed project is HUGE.
We are appreciating the good and actually ” living with less” is much more awesome than I ever thought possible.
I heard a friend say one day, ” My goal is to live well below my means.” That stuck with me and I have chosen it as one of my many goals. It’s fun.
Mini Update: I have weeded out my pottery, and actually am parting with some of my children’s art work. The storage unit is less crowded, we hope to move to a smaller unit by September first. Currently my focus is on our renovation, 29 days of giving, real work and family. Soon I will be paining ( art) again, it’s nice to even feel like painting again.
Whatever you want to change, you can – even if it takes forever – you have the power. Until next time. Cheers!
Remember when you were young, and the future felt like some distant place that would never really happen. You felt light, and easy, optimistic and somewhat care free and in love?
Well we have reached the future and even with all our burdens, and all my processing of issues, I feel like everything is new and possible again.
So I am dedicating the following to the love of my life, my handsome husband.
Our life together is so precious together
We have grown, we have grown
Although our love is still special
Let’s take a chance and fly away somewhere alone
It’s been too long since we took the time
No-one’s to blame, I know time flies so quickly
But when I see you darling
It’s like we both are falling in love again
It’ll be just like starting over, starting over
With our new fixer-upper home, we have a lot of work in front of us, but I see this and everything else, as a brand new start. It is a wonderful adventure that we will take together every step of the way. Who ever thought we would be here now? It’s feakin’ awesome.
I love you Ray. xo
Take a listen to this…..”No one ca get in the way of what I am feeling…”
Geez. I don’t lie. I try not to lie. I can’t remember anything , so I am no good at lying and I don’t feel good if I lie. So I really don’t lie.
I can keep a secret. I am the best secret keeper I know. I never betray a trust. But I want you to know, I don’t hold on to secrets. Meaning, I hold them and throw them away, maybe file them away is a better term. Secrets belong to those who share their life with me. Those secrets belong to the person who told the secret. If someone trusts me, I feel it is my most important responsibility to protect that trust.
I have always believed this. It’s nothing that I can change or that I want to change. It part of me like my face. It is just there.
So when I get lied to or when someone betrays my trust, I am deeply offended. I lose total respect for the person that lied to me. That’s it. I cut them out, or at least I cut them off. I mentally attempt to erase them. Not so easy when the person is a relative.
The inspiration quote I posted yesterday is very interesting to me.
“Lying is done with words and also with silence.”- Adrienne Rich
Take some time to think about this. It may prove helpful. If you are having an important conversation, and someone isn’t actively participating, it may be a clue to their deceit. Keep alert, pay attention to body language and tone. Changing the subject is another red flag.
I have learned that if someone lies once they will lie again. I have learned that liars think it is okay to lie. They easily understand when someone lies, and they go about their day as if nothing happened. Liars hang with other liars. “Birds of a feather” still holds true.
Obviously, I have a low tolerance for liars but I know so many of them. This often puts me in a position of being the oddball. The one who “expects too much out of other people.” I get criticized for expecting people to not lie in general. Who knew standing up for the truth would be met with criticism.
I believe everyone has the right and the responsibility to protect themselves. So don’t put up with any liars they will only hurt you over and over again.
never rarely change. But the truth eventually comes to light. And for that we should be grateful.
Tip: If you call a liar out they will become angry, it’s better to recognize them for what they are and ignore them.
Inspiration: “No man has a good enough memory to be a successful liar.”- Abraham Lincoln
One-day one-thing: Acknowledge who has your back, nurture that relationship.
There’s something out there that wants to take me down. I swear, I am doing all I can and bad sh*t keeps happening.
This morning, I was on my way to the dog park. I started the engine and I hear a thump, and when I backed out there was a headless bloody creature dead on my driveway. I don’t do well with gore, so a took the poop scooper, shielded my eyes and flung it into the bushes.
A little bloody organ remained stuck to the drive but I couldn’t stomach it. So I left.
On my way home, the AC in the van didn’t work. I thought that was peculiar, but things got worse. Every single service light on the dash was on. Apparently every working part of my car was in distress. Next the radio went silent, and then the car no longer let me know how fast I was going or how much gas I had. All the gauges went dead. Just like the helpless creature on the drive.
I was able to get home but a car was blocking the drive. I parked in the street, and that is where the car took it’s final breath.
This isn’t the only thing not going my way. I have a person who wants to sue me over not buyer their house. I never signed the counter offer, so to me there isn’t an executable contract. This doesn’t stop sue- happy people. This seller refuses to sign the mutual release and the real estate company is holding $1000.00 bucks of my cold cash. Needless to say I am pissed.
I could use that money right now to fix my car problem. ( most likely an alternator $450 -$500)
But hey, things could be worse, and most likely they will get worse.
As long as I am held in limbo, I can not buy a house. House number #3 or #4 is back on the market, we lost it before in multiples. This is a second chance for us to buy it. However I can’t, without being released from the non-contract contract, all because of her
threat promise to sue me. <heavy sigh>
One day: We are going to have our own place and I am going to tell all the fuckers in the world to back the fuck off. People who are mean, nasty and lie. They put all their twisted efforts towards getting something for nothing. They and the people that serve them, the pond scum lawyers, are repulsive human beings.
And that is how I really feel right now.
Tip: Don’t believe anyone. Especially anyone who is in a position to make money off of you.
Tip2: Don’t believe elderly people when they say they don’t remember or when they say they can’t hear you- they are lying.
Inspiration: “Lying is done with words and also with silence.”- Adrienne Rich
One-day one-thing: Get rid of people you can not trust, no ifs, ands, or buts. Just do it.
I have an issue with getting too close. I could explain it away based on many things, now that I recognize much of the baggage I carry. But that doesn’t change it, and I question if it even need to be changed? Or am I like this because I want it this way?
Yesterday I had this imaginary turn of events play out in my head that lead a friendship from casual and strong to really really close friends. And that’s when I noticed this “pull-back” inside of me, I could physically feel it. It was like – Oh, I don’t want to do “that.”
Mind you, in the past few years I have lost five different friends each by one of the following ways; two by way of death, one good old fashion betrayal, one from a realization, and one because of relocation. Also during this same time my three children left the nest for college. (Irish triplets; I knew this day would come, didn’t make it any easier) Feelings of loss are never easy.
In the beginning, Unpack The Rat was focused solely on material stuff, clutter and junk, but when some of that stuff made me cry I knew there was much more stuff stuffed inside me. I
realize that now, right now, is the time to fix everything the best I can. It’s been brutal a continuing challenge.
Another thing I have learned during my journey is, it will go on as long as I am breathing. Meaning no matter what happens, I will have to work at conquering my demons every day, or they will take me over. My demon, disguised as clutter, boxes and disarray, is actually negativity and all that encompasses.
Much like an addiction, I have to fight negativity every day or it will overpower my mind, body and soul.
So right now, I am going to come up with five unproven tips to counter my negativity. Maybe they will help you, me or someone we know.
Five Instant Tips:
1. Stop swearing unless it’s used in positive comment. Example: ” That’s so f*cking incredible. I am so excited for you!” Swearing when you are upset or angry only serves to fuel and intensify any negative emotion.
2. Do not allow yourself to get hungry. We are grown people, we know we have to fuel our bodies and minds. Pack a lunch box to take wherever you go, make a first aid kit for the hungries. Suggestions for your kit: carrots, fruit, cheese, nuts, crackers and water. Dig in before you end up in a sour mood or even worse find yourself driving through Wendy’s or the likes.
3. Remember those who are thirsty. The time you waste being negative could be time spent promoting Charity Water . I am signing Unpack The Rat up today. ( if I can do it this way) Of course what this really means is help anyone (a person, animal or plant) who needs help rather than filling your own cup with negativity.
4. Daydream about a ridiculous or fabulous adventure. If you want, go ahead and close your eyes for a few seconds and slip away. Envision it all as if you were really there.
5. Be grateful for having the ability to love.
That’s what I came up with. Now I am going to Charity Water and see if I can sign up.
As for getting too close, I am not going to worry about it for now. Not everything needs an answer the moment you think of it. Sometimes you just need to “be.”
I be being.
Okay, it worked…..Here’s the link to donate to Unpack the Rat’s Charity Water campaign.
The other day I looked at the clock and it said 5:30, but it was still light out. So of course I thought that my clock battery died. I didn’t realize that we have turned the corner, and the days were getting longer. Next it will be spring. This morning I even heard birds singing, yes not just making noise, they were singing.
I believe my horrible experiences over the winter sucked my personal time clock right out of me. It’s all one big blur. January? Did we have a January this year? February is okay. Valentine’s is the only holiday in my book that makes any sense. Wait, New Years make sense too.
Which brings me to March, March 15th to be exact. “Beware the Ides of March.” How fitting as I will be getting the keys to our new home on that day. It all happened so fast that I wasn’t sure if I even had time to think about it. But we are moving into the city. Not city living like New York City, nope, no high rises, but within the city boundary lines.
I will be completely honest, I have never lived in a city. Oh, I once lived in Dallas proper, but that doesn’t count. That place was a organized community maybe 19 apartment complexes in a circle with a clubhouse and large pool in the middle. I remember one event we watch Rodger Staubach jump off the high dive, he was old even back then…maybe he dove. We just drank.
So into the city we go. I have always lived in a bubble. I took an on-line quiz the other night, that among other things determines the thickness of that bubble, and mine is quite thick. I am a liberal thinker who has lived a sheltered life. Then for fun, halfway kidding half way not, I sent this clip of Clint Eastwood to my husband:
I can’t imagine living where my every move isn’t analyzed and critiqued by people who have nothing better to do – Or where people care more about the car I drive and the brand of my shoes, than who I am. In the “city” no one will care if I put a tree in the yard, or if I paint my house purple, or if I put flowers next to the sidewalk.
Where I used to live I knew the Mayor and I’m related to someone on city council. (not that that helped me in any shape or form) In the city, I know no one. My neighborhood will be mixed, very mixed and I am okay with that. And when I say mixed I mean; owners,renters, races, religion, and I really have no idea what else.
I don’t know what gets stolen, at our old house my car was broken into twice while parked in our driveway, and a few garden rocks were stolen….really…who steals a small boulders? (suburban thugs?)
We are very excited. This is the perfect new chapter considering all our existing commitments that keep us in this area. My daughter did a comparison of our new house and the one in the movie Gran Torino. Several similarities, just take a look.
My question; how do you live in a place that is so big there’s nothing connecting you to the area? No schools, our children are grown, no church, we don’t go to church. Well we are about to find out.
This opportunity also brings me full circle back to “unpacking the rat” because I now have the luxury of sorting as I move. I am not taking one item of clutter with me. How cool is that? I better do a good job, because I am planning on never never doing this de-cluttering thing again.
Living better with less, now and forever.
Lucky house #7. Cheers!
Tip: Be ready.
Inspiration:” For everything you have missed, you have gained something else, and for everything you gain, you lose something else.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson
One-day one-thing: Appreciate the songs sung by the birds, their songs are gifts.
Everything seems possible when you can’t sleep, except of course sleeping.
No one bothers you but yourself on sleepless nights. But the worse part for me is knowing how awful I will feel the next day.
Well, today is the next day, I have a mild headache and have a list of “must do’ errands. Winter arrived during the night and there’s a few inches of snow covering everything, and I am sure it’s in the teens with the wind chill.
What did I learn last night?
Drinking coffee after not drinking coffee for a week – is a bad idea. Either commit to it or don’t, because it really does effect your body. I have had three sips today, and I think that’s going to be all for me, okay one more sip, but that’s it. Maybe the caffeine is stronger when I use my french press? Or maybe it was the Jamaican coffee, or maybe it’s because I recently switch to a 66% raw diet? But that’s it for me, no more coffee. That last sip was extremely unsatisfying.
I found out my best friend when I cant sleep is my iPhone. I didn’t have to get out of bed, and it took minimal effort to read, browse news, tumblr and comment on blogs. Connect then disconnect with people who were awake, where ever. Then I would attempt to sleep again.
Tossing and turning is the worst. I convinced myself that laying perfectly still would be the closest thing I could do to sleep. I did that exercise more than once.
I figured out that that guy that was on “Shark Tank” episode last night probably didn’t sleep for months after losing 200K in less than 2 minutes. Offer to hand me a check for 600K for my company free and clear, I say, ” Hell yes and thank you!” in a New York minute.
During my sleepless night, I decided I didn’t feel right about putting in an offer on house #6. Needless to say, house #5 rejected our offer. The #5 house was the best one so far, in the big picture. We signed all the #6 papers yesterday, and I told my Husband this morning it was a no-go. He said, ” No problem, we’ll trust your instinct, there will be more houses.” Was it instinct or exhaustion? No one knows.
Which brings me to this conclusion: no one knows anything. We only think we know. We act like we know. We speak like we know and we listen to others like they may know.
We don’t, they don’t, but we all try to varying degrees to “know.” Give “not-knowing” a try today. It’s kind of fun.
Tip: Question yourself.
Inspiration:” We are now at a point in time when the ability to receive, utilize, store, transform and trasmit data — the lowest cognitive form — has expanded literally beyond comprehension. Understanding and wisdom are largely forgotten as we struggle under an avalanche of data and information.” – Dee Hock
One-day one-thing: Errands, as simple as that.
I am taking a break because I just can’t think straight right now.
It’s no big deal, this house hunting has been a miserable experience, I don’t know how many we have lost. Oh and the one we were going to close on we found out is loaded with asbestos, disturbed asbestos. So we rescinded that offer and lost that house last week.
I knew it was hard losing our home, but I thought I did okay with that. Getting rid of a bunch of stuff hasn’t been that bad. I don’t miss any of it. (mind you I have a lot left to go) I knew having all my children disappear to college at virtually the same time, and then letting me know they are never moving back to Ohio would be hard, but I manage it. ( I want them to live in many places – that’s how I like to live) I am proud of them and support them. I miss them to pieces, but that’s to be expected.
The economy sent our business for a loop, but we are getting through that, not fun, but so what.
The killer issue: living in my mothers house has proven to be more than I can take. Funny, how when you live away from someone you tend to forget their faults. You make excuses for them, you don’t see them for long periods of time. I have faults too, but seriously, the sh*t I hear daily is so disturbing.
I used to bend over backwards in kindness, generosity and consideration, trying to win a measure of love, respect and kindness that just isn’t available in my family of origin. Unfortunately, the way they think is deeply rooted in me, and their beliefs about love lives in my core like a damaged chromosome. I do not want become her/them, but it could be too late. When I see things I have done, behavior just like them, I know it’s alive in me too. I get disgusted and sometime I don’t recognize my behavior until it is way too late.
I fear for the damage I may have done to my own children. I will forever feel guilty for all my mistakes.
For the bulk of my life, I created a different reality-one other than the cold truth, but the truth never hides. Now I have to somehow fix myself. There have been days I have contemplated should I become a drunk or a drug addict. I swear, I never saw this coming, not this late in the game. I really got f*cked up in my upbringing.
A while back, I remember telling someone else, that their mother loved them no matter how it seemed. That may be true, but there are different levels, different definitions and various understandings of what love means for each person. And when those ideals don’t line up or aren’t even close to lining up, it doesn’t work.
I know people really don’t like to hear negative whining. Repeated posts complaining of the same old situation even bores me. Hand me the happy feel good, cheerful smile, inspiration and success stories, please. So I’ll leave you with a beautiful photograph (above), and promise you I will get through this.
Wish me luck, I am very
sad broken damaged and I know this will be hard. I am bitter and I regret the years I wasted. And I am unimpressed with my ability to deal with what I know.
Over and over again, I convinced myself to believe it was different, because that’s what I wanted to be true.
Realizing this is difficult. I would say, I must have thought I was super woman or something in the past because it never crossed my mind that some things are un-fixable.
At one point in my life, I was looking at that broken egg on the ground. I said, “That’s my last food, you broke my last food.”
That was so many years ago, it wasn’t my last food ever, but it was never fixed. Because food in general was replaced, the brokenness of my last egg meant very little to me. However, I never forgot the feeling of having nothing, and no way to fix it..
When you realize that somethings cant be fixed, it’s intensely realistic. But being a mother as I have for 22 plus years now, you spend you entire life fixing things and making bad things better. Then comes the day you can’t. You can’t fix it. You can’t make it better.
On that day little pieces of you die.