Friday, May 11, 2007

Dealing with things

My mother has come to my aid recently by visiting and helping me declutter.

I think in this blog I come across as in better shape than I am--humor me, if I don't. In real life, I find that if I'm left on my own I just kind of wind down. So my mother has been coming up to keep me functioning.

This last visit was from Saturday to Wednesday, long enough to really get things done, and the last items displaced by the great bed move have settled into new spots in the house. She undid the huge pile of cardboard that we had created in the future mudroom, carting much of it off in her station wagon (we don't have curbside cardboard recycling here.) She entertained Z. She bought us take-out and took us to the diner. She made things easier. Walking through the house where the displaced items used to be is nearly shocking. So many things are missing it feels like we have moved. From one corner of the house, anyway.

In the garden, she went to town on the dandelions. In return, I sent her home with shade plants for her north-facing front yard: trillium, sensitive fern, allegheny pachysandra, dogstooth violets, and one volunteer heuchera. Also some daffs that needed dividing, though that project is only barely begun.

My garden is unevenly kempt, but it never feels beyond me. My house almost ALWAYS feels beyond me. Aside from the obvious fact that if I am in the garden, I am in sunshine (don't underestimate this benefit in a SAD sufferer), I am not sure why this should be. It is evidently more difficult and time-consuming to create a drip irrigation system than it is to clean a bathroom, but only the latter feels daunting.

In other news, the insurance check is supposed to be on its way, and we are likely to buy a car with it this evening--used, 2 years younger, fewer miles, otherwise same make and model. We will be financing a good chunk of it, but with everything that's going on, I'd rather pay more for a certified car with the warranty intact.

Post in process on changing therapists and my bad morning yesterday--but after we car-shop, shabbat will be here, so it may have to wait until Sunday.


Jenny Davidson said...

I must say that one reason you may come across in such good shape here is that you're such a wonderfully intelligent & appealing writer! Hope this doesn't sound like awful blog-flattery, the tone of commenters elsewhere can sometimes get ludicruously obsequious, but your sentences really just do bear that mark of distinction of the good writer. I hope that you are going to write either essays or a novel, seems like a waste of talent not to tho of course a talent exerted in modest blog-like ways is nonetheless a valuable talent & can be developed in all sorts of ways!

Julia said...

Shabbat Shalom. Don't stress, and enjoy the new car.
Also, can I borrow your mom? I think I am about to loose the Great House battle. And my mom is too far away. :(

jo(e) said...

Oh, it's nice to have a mom like that!

S. said...

Jenny, when you say that I think I need to start thinking up plots and characters. Thank you for the encouragement. (Mom, I know, I know, you're always telling me this--but go read Jenny's blog to see what I mean!)

Julia, over here the Great House Battle was well and truly lost: when I say "declutter" it's a euphemism for excavating six or seven feet of recycling. Unfortunately, that is not an exaggeration of what we did to the future mudroom, not by even an inch. I'm sorry your mom isn't closer to you! I'm sorry my mom isn't closer to me!

Jo(e), it really is. Don't think I don't appreciate her!

Jenny Davidson said...

Next time I see you we will have a good conversation about what kinds of writing you might be doing. Plots and characters are great, but not for everyone--I mean, don't you have the temptation to write a series of detective novels in which really your real-life setting and people are the main things you're writing about, with plot a thin afterthought?!? Well-written and thoughtful books along those lines are quite lovely.

Sorry things have been rough lately. I well sympathized with your SEPTA tale, Phila. public transportation is WRETCHED! The decision to go back to your old therapist sounds excellent, good work there...

S. said...

Jenny, SEPTA is a drag isn't it? And ridiculously expensive to boot. Thanks for the encouragement on therapy.

I think that if I ever do write it, my mystery series will involve apprenticing myself to Denise Mina or Frances Fyfield in some way. They both write gorgeously and handle amateur sleuth series more intelligently than anyone else I've read.

I think I would never pick up a mystery series written about my real-life circumstances. Bookseller mom in woodsy residential neighborhood full of overeducated save-the-world types--it has cozy written all over it, no matter how well-written. It's a nice life, but a boring criminal scene. I could do a stand-alone that way, maybe.

I guess it's clear from my response here that I would love to talk writing with you some day.

Jenny Davidson said...

Yes, we will talk writing SOON--def. sometime this summer.

Denise Mina has had more buzz, and I love her books, but Fyfield really hits me hard--I guess I identify with that main character--and I am still annoyed with her for taking what is really MY book title (I can still write one with that name I guess!), "Perfectly Pure and Good."

Don't you think it would be an interesting challenge to write your circumstances so as to completely challenge the cozy classification?!? I love noir, and yet if we are not spending all our time in bars and hanging out with underworld types and cops it is a distinctly fantastical genre to be writing, might as well write about knights in armor or whatever at that point!

Anyway, we'll save this for conversation, but it's going to be good... Therapy, swimming, novel-writing!