Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Statesville, NC

So Far, So Good

Greetings! I am still here, floating around in reality and somewhat virtually. I have been so busy, but I am proud to announce that I am making good on my last post about my ordinary year. I am pushing the limit, and climbing the hills with my three boys at my side, on my hip and holding my hand. Life is good, and I have worked hard to make it that way. 

I have started my own business, and have had the great fortune of being very busy in my first two months of self employment. I admit, I had some allusions that I could make my own schedule, go for long meandering runs that lead to such deep thinking that I solve huge problems. I envisioned going to the botanical gardens and meeting friends for lunch for extended time, whiling away the hours in martinis and laughter. Nope. None of that really happens. My work outs are rushed and I constantly think about all the things I should be doing. Lunches are late, hurried and I always feel like my social skills are desperately lacking in any character. In time, all of my fantasies will come true, I know, but for now I am just happy that I am too busy working for myself to come up for air right now. 

My days typically are spent visiting sites, submitting construction plans for permit and catching people during business hours. I am all over the region on a weekly basis. Outside of Charlotte, the area that I work in has old small towns. They are so charming and strike me each time I discover a new town center. It's great. It often makes my day. I love driving up the bustling streets of the old South, visiting ancient warehouses, lumber yards and industrial districts old and new. I am hoping to integrate some of the photos that I take on my journey to discover these places and here will be their home. Stay tuned for more interiors too. We have unfinished business at the house and will soon be renting an historic property that makes my heart skip a beat. Those topics are for later though. 

I hope you are well. I hope you are smiling, and it's good to be back. And remember, sleep is for suckers anyway. 

Thursday, January 3, 2013

An Extraordinary and Ordinary Year

A New Year. 2013. There really isn't anything special about this number or year, in particular. It's an ordinary integer, and you probably have never heard of anyone saying, "Well, in 2013....", unless it was last year sometime. That's okay, though. You know what I think? I think this year will take us all by surprise, in a major way.

 I won't bore you with resolutions and how I must lose weight and eat better and go to church. I will tell you, however what will happen. I am my own seuth-sayer, and man, I mean it. This is the year that I dig my heels in. It's the year that I realize that I must try, and I must step over the edge and fly, because I can and because I want to. This is (another) one of those years, that come December 31st, I look back on one of the greatest years of my life. It's an absolute, I tell you.

I am not going to change the way I am. I am not going to make grand promises to my self and only wallow in failure in no more than 60 days from now. I HOPE that despair will not find me, and sadness alludes us all. I am one of those people, even as a kid, who prepared for the worst outcomes internally, but when true tragedy was upon me, I never saw it coming. This year, as others, I'll be happily blind to it, and go on, hand in hand, with my three boys. I'll be ordinary. I'll fly under the radar. I won't create a stir.

In the twilight of 2013, our littlest will be walking running around the house and chattering with high pitched delight. I will have another in pre-school and underwear. He'll teach us what he learned that day at the dinner table, as we did with our parents. They'll both amaze us, make us cry, and touch the deepest depths of our hearts and our souls. And then there's my husband...

For the past few years, I have been recovering both physically and emotionally from two births, child rearing, and trying to find pockets of time to catch some sleep. Alone. We have been parents. Together. We have lent a hand to one another as we climbed and slid up and down the mountain of financial strain, emotional well being, parenting and career management. This year will be more of the same and then some. This year, we will make a point to stop, look and realize that we are meant to be here together. Enjoy one another a little more and make time. More time. Time that is there for the taking, and it'll be ours, together. We'll be spontaneous and silly and continue our weekly rituals of farmer's market trips and watching bad movies. It's our thing, after all.

I feel that we are on the peak of that hill and we can see a plateau, with a road. A paved one. Paved with the years of hard work, love and the building of our tiny empire. I want to run so fast down the road to see what's ahead, but yet, I want to stop and notice the new gray hair on my head and the baby's little feet kicking, kicking, kicking their way to strength and standing. All will make me smile, and all will be extraordinary. I am so excited for this year. I truly became exhilarated on New Year's Eve. I'd like to think that it was purely coincidence that my renaissance was the first of the year, but it is not. Like the road I see ahead, it look a lot to get where I am at this time, yes, but we all feel a little renewed. My camera sits near me now, and even it seems to be moving with delight and anticipation of what this year will bring it.

I wish you the best this year. I wish you all that you need, and some of what you want. Mostly, I wish for you to smile, dream and hope a lot in 2013, and beyond. It is not in years that we measure happiness and it is certainly not a measure of hard work, but I hope for all of us, that we do see a pay day for all of that soon. Slow down where you need, speed up in the other spots. Live how you wish to, and above all, live like you want to. I think we will, I certainly do.

Saturday, December 22, 2012

Holy C(w)rap!

It's a forty+ year tradition. It's crazy. It's wrapping paper. Every year, my mom wraps one gift for each person with this amazing and seemingly endless supply of paper. Well, it's not really wrapping paper, it's the surplus from old matchbook print transfers from the 1940's and 1950's.
(similar match book transfer
photo from seller : rapcollect)
My grandma's friend stole, took these rolls when the factory decided to close it's doors on Allen St. in Hudson, NY. Upcylcers and re-purposers rejoice, right? If you look closely, it's cellophane and the print transfer is backward and rolled outside in, like architectural plans.
There is not a Christmas that I remember not having to give a little more muscle to rip open the unintended cover all for our gifts. Wrapping with it is a bit of a challenge too. It doesn't fold easily, and it gets all over your hands. It is, after all, a transfer, but after all, it's tradition.
My mother commented today that maybe it's made with real gold. I said, perhaps a carcinogen.
Regardless, the truth is, this paper will most likely outlast us all. Long after I am gone, maybe Gil's wife will carefully be selecting a gift for Nate's child to wrap with this, and wonder why and how this stuff keeps kicking around. Maybe the stories will stick, and maybe we will find the actual matchbooks that are allegedly in the house somewhere. In the meantime, may your family traditions burn strong and your wrapping paper be easy to tear.