Stirring

JULY

 

Regal feline

 

Home to roost

 

Together v 1.0

 

AUGUST

 

Dumpling gang

 

‘Twas the night before college

 

SEPTEMBER

 

Championship match

 

Poster Children at Pygmalion

 

OCTOBER

 

Midterm

 

Kanken stash at Fjallraven, St. Paul

 

NOVEMBER

 

Meadowbrook

 

Studio space at Same Street Textiles & Scrap Yard

 

Fireplace upgrade at 909

 

DECEMBER

 

Love is all around

 

Together v 2.0

 

My sentiments exactly (photo source unknown)

 

Currently: Knitting a rectangle and patiently waiting for this year to come to a close. I’ve got a list of possessions and behaviors to jettison, and others to reclaim.  I’m also wondering, as we hurtle into a new calendar year: What does complacency mean to you? Is it something to be aspired toward? Or challenged?

 

LOTSA (Lisa’s Open Tabs, Saved Aggressively):

Wondering how Perry Possum would respond to such overtures

How huge is your mammoth? Mine is enormous. And loud

Buying this shirt, brb

Carrie Fisher’s unofficial doctoring made the ESB script better. Way better

Discovering Donella Meadows

Wish I’d thought of this name

Always reading the comments at Archdruid Report

Granola Shotgun providing inspiration for the coming year(s)

I keep coming back to Nance Klehm

My friend Lisa writes AMAZING stuff

The sun rises and sets on Urbana, IL

Harbinger

Tell me about the work you do because you can’t NOT do it.

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I’m talking about the work that so absorbs you that hours go by and you have no idea and now you’re starving and whoops the sun went down which is unfortunate but you’d do it all over again. I love hearing people talking about the work whose siren song they cannot resist. So… tell me about yours. Is it volunteer work? Is it building something? Is it sculpture? Is it ramen?

Confession: I’ve been without a real passion project for awhile. I get really excited about things, but the idea of even getting started on something deeper feels exhausting right now. I do think often about devoting myself to something the way Jim has devoted himself to soccer. (It’s really cool, the way he’s devoted himself to soccer.) A memoir. Multiplatform work involving three women practically no one has ever heard of but whose stories fascinate me. Helping a couple very talented friends launch their very good ideas. Completely transforming the backyard into a permaculture food landscape. Learning how to cook elaborate cuisines.

I have to start somewhere. That mention about the permaculture food landscape – which I think would be SO COOL at 909 – reminds me, uncomfortably, that I need to get with it regarding the yard & garden. Spring came early, but got taken off the boil, so to speak; it’s been cold and rainy. The wind has been from the north and west, making its presence deeply felt, so I’m leaning in and avoiding the garbage can lids.

Weather’s just part of it. Also contributing to garden avoidance: Work, college visits, soccer matches, nagging low back pain and a frozen shoulder (o, middle age; o, tight hamstrings) and waiting. Lilly’s about to decide what she’ll do after her high school graduation next month.

(Next month?)

The sticker price of college/university is absolutely absurd, friends. I have many thoughts, but I guess the one thing I’m coming away with is the realization that while our journey from public school -> homeschooling -> public school -> sort-of-public school has been maddening at times, my kids have pretty good perspective on education, the future, competition, debt, learning, etc. I’m glad for this, because they’re the ones doing the navigating of this brave new world as young adults. I cannot even imagine.

Note to self: Either way, it’s all good. Also? HAVE MORE FUN.

Rogue

This year’s, um, “slow gardening” has revealed a bonus: finding young plants that germinated quite far from where their parent lived the year before. I usually let these rogues do their thing for the full season.

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Pictured: Sunflower with kale; breadseed poppy with golden beets; blackberry lily with … weeds. Not pictured: Dill with salad mix, tomatoes in the compost pile.

Months ago I posted a photo of a bunch of podcasting gear that I received for Christmas from Jim. I got everything out right away and RTFM’d and… that was it. I typically (and this is a terrible habit) generate scenarios that are way ahead of Step One: The Starting of the Thing. This scenario generation then has the unwanted (?) result of discouraging me from further action for a long time.

[In this case, a loooooong time. I admit it. I get flummoxed by the the potential for failure at things I desperately want to be good at and I have to ruminate and angst and hand-wring for awhile before I get off my ass and do something.]

Anyway, yesterday I was walking home from work when I realized I could have a lot of fun “failing” at creating a podcast. (Yes, LB-K, it’s OK to have fun.) I thought about the email my friend (and podcaster) Lindsey sent me earlier in the day with a link about podcasting (“You probably know all this stuff from your work at the station, but…” Uh, NO, I certainly do not, good god no, THANK YOU), and I also thought about the Pecha Kucha presentation I gave 4 years ago where I talked about how I started telling local food stories on the radio. I admitted to my ongoing adoration of and identification with Harriet the Spy, and I talked about my beloved tape recorder. I dragged that things around everywhere for a few years as a kid, interviewing everyone I could. I also occasionally recorded conversations where the participants were unaware. You know, like a spy.

There are things we discover we love doing later on, after we’ve done some living. Growing food and just appreciating food are two pastimes (it seems weird to call them that) I never gave much thought to until life events occurred that made me realize their importance in my personal narrative, and that others – many others – felt the same way (although usually for different reasons). I’ll always, ALWAYS, be interested in growing food and following food projects. And eating.

Then there are the things we’ve always loved, since we were kids, that sometimes lay dormant for years or surface in different ways. For me? Words. I’ve always been a talker. I’ve always been a writer. I’ve always loved people, even when paralyzed by shyness at being the new kid (again, and again, and again…). I’ve been talking with, listening to, and writing about people for other people since high school. I thought about being a journalist. My favorite and best teacher in 8th grade, Mr. Cramer (hi, Mr. Cramer) noticed my interest in people and news and encouraged it, telling me I could be a reporter on TV someday; I became a history major instead with a vague goal of becoming… something. Maybe a writer? Easier. Certainly vaguer.

I loved my work as a server in restaurants and bars during and after college because… talking. I’ve interviewed and corresponded with rock bands and culture critics. When I sold records for Cargo in the 90s, I relished the amount of time I spent on the phone talking about and selling the music I worshipped to people who shared my enthusiasm. A regular at the record store I used to work at in Chicago referred to me 20+ years ago as the wordy diva of the alt scene because I talked his ear off every time he came in. (Wordy Diva lives on, by the way.) My relationship to Harriet lived on in the notebooks I carried everywhere in my twenties. They were full of long letters written in bars, setting scenes, never sent. My relationship to my tape recorder (and its microphone) lived on in the radio shows I did at school and later on. It certainly lives on in the Backyard Industry audio and video.

Changing interests  + lifelong passion + nosiness + readily available equipment and outlet = what am I so scared of?

DOING WHATEVER I WANT?

GOING ROGUE?

Stay “tuned”. Tonight I plug everything in and… start talking.