Day 29: If you won the lottery, what would you do with the money?

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I’m going to dream big and say I won 500 million dollars. I need that much for this.

  1. I would set my family up for success. College money for anyone who wants to go, trade school, you name it. I would buy them each a house and reliable car. Family, taken care of. My mama has worked hard her whole life and I would love to spoil her.
  2. I would move to Kauai the same day. I would buy a ridiculously expensive piece of property on the ocean and would grow all the things I’ve never been able to grow.  I can’t wait to plant my North Idaho gardenia in the soil of her people. 🙂
  3. I would buy the homes of my enemies and evict them. Yeah… I can be a bit of a cunt when inspired.
  4. I would then purchase the companies that employed those same assholes, and liquidate them.
  5. I’d hire a hundred gardeners and have the vegetable garden of my dreams. I’d grow hundreds of varieties of tomatoes in a rainbow shape of ombre colors blending into each other. A good portion of my winnings would go into the dirt.
  6. I’d travel the world with my children and finish writing all the books that sit collecting dust on my laptop.
  7. Tattoos… so many tattoos…. I’d get on a plane and fly to Florida to have my very favorite tattoo goddess do them for me, too.
  8. I’d go to law school, focus on family law and represent single mothers near and far.
  9. I’d spend a month in all my favorite countries, learning how to prepare every cuisine to perfection. A gnocchi lesson in Italy, dim sum in China, and a rainbow of curries to learn in Thailand. I love food, and I hope I always love learning to cook new things.
  10. I’d adopt that baby from a Chinese orphanage like I always wanted to. I read all the books after the birth of my son, cried for years about the ongoing bias that had women leaving their newborn daughters on the side of the road like trash or tucking them into a basket to be abandoned in a busy market. I love being a mother more than anything and absolutely think I’ll foster or adopt a few more children before I retire into being a Grandma.

What are you going to do, make or buy?


Day 25: List 10 things you would hope to be remembered for.

1. That I wasn’t complacent with the time I was given. I recently left a job I probably could have worked at, forever. As the vice president, I had a fair amount of job security. Then I hired the idiot who I was in love with, who broke my heart shortly thereafter, and that job I loved became a prison of consequences. Those folks who tell you not to shit where you eat? They aren’t kidding. Poverty is scary, for sure.. but the fact that I never have to see his lying, miserable face again, is right up there with winning the lottery. It’s worth every last penny.

2. That I’ve never been for sale. My heart and soul are hard-won treasure. I don’t always put them in the best place, but they are priceless and irreplaceable in the self-serving, calculating and disposable climate we live in.

3. That the things that I love most are free. Baby tomato plants, the smell of fresh coffee, a long Sunday without any plans, my little ones cuddling in my arms…. ahhh.

4. That I’d rather have an envelope of rare heirloom tomato seeds than just about anything else on earth. I spent a week just enjoying being home with nowhere to go… and then the temperature went up in my greenhouse and I started dreaming about freshly turned dirt and tiny green tomatoes starting to ripen. I braved the coronavirus yesterday to go get a bag of potting soil. 🙂

5. That I’d rather give than receive. In all situations, lol…

6. That anything that’s mine is yours if I love you. You can even have my last roll of toilet paper… and that’s saying a lot. I share so freely that sometimes I don’t realize I’ve given too much…. but that’s just me. I’d rather go find more, than watch someone I love go without.

7. That I’m funny as hell and will do my best to make you laugh, even on your saddest days. I’ll volunteer my stupidity AND my stupid heart if it means replacing your tears with laughter. I’ve loved a lot of morons, it won’t take long.

8. That my heart was always in the right place, even when I was actively working against my own best interests. This has been a shitty year full of loving the worst kind of man who gives the worst of my worst a run for their titles. I seem determined to love the ugliest dog at the shelter in hopes of saving his smelly life, with more thought to his potential than the flea-infested reality sitting in my lap.

9. That my faith is strong, regardless of the many situations and disappointments that have challenged it. I’m a huge believer in Karma and am eternally grateful to be a favorite of the Karma fairy. It may be easy to hurt and disappoint me, but OH my goodness… I don’t envy the karma that comes with that.

10. That I’m loving to a fault, friendly and welcoming to the least beloved, sharing and devoted to the people who love me in return. Oh and fickle… because when you move from my list of friends to that other list… I giggle just as much at your suffering as I did cheering your success.

Oh and…. Happy Corona Virus!

I don’t often post pictures or videos of myself, but I figured I’d say hello in person, since we’re all a bunch of shut-ins. Who’s ready for a knitting lesson??

 

 

 


Day 19: What do you most wish you were great at?

1. Thinning the carrots in the garden. I suck at ripping 3/4th of them out, so they’re always crowded, too small, misshapen and weird. I grow horrible carrots and it’s my greatest shame as a farm girl. It’s one of those things that is part of my character. I can’t casually throw away something that I made. I give it the benefit of the doubt and even when it clearly looks stunted and in need of discarding… I keep trying to save them all. It’s not a great trait to possess when you’re growing root vegetables (or dating). Bless all my little beets and carrots- I can’t pick one over the other so they’re all going to have a hard time reaching their full potential.

2. Letting go. I worry about people’s feelings more than I should. I overthink everything. I can’t tell you the horrible paths my mind went down today because even I know I’m imagining the worst things at will. I wish I were great at saying “Cest la vie” with a smile and a tip of my champagne glass… but assuming the worst is more my weakness and I make even slightest hiccup into a heart attack. Death is extremely hard for me and I wish I could find the peace and joy in happy memories… but letting go is tantamount to giving up for me, and I fight it tooth and nail.

3. Hunting. Random, I know… but I want to shoot an elk, gut it and chop it up to fill my freezer. I loved dissection in science and I’m not squeamish. I grow a million things, but at the end of the long day and night of weeding, pruning and staking them… all I want is a steak. I have too tender of a heart to grow a cow to eat, but I could joyfully hunt a wild one down. I’m determined to learn.

4. Fishing. Along those same lines… I really want to catch a pike. I’m seeing my friends post pictures of them lately and I want one. I work for an Alaskan based company and I REALLY want to go fishing for salmon, halibut, cod and the rest of their magical assortment of delicious fish. I’d rather go fishing than to a spa… so perhaps I just need to book a trip and go already. Why wait?

5. Laundry. I’m great at washing and drying it… but folding it is right up there with the gynecologist for me. I’d rather die than fold ten loads of laundry and that’s what I face each Saturday. Yes, I know I should get rid of some sheets. Have less dish towels…. etc. I don’t want to. I have more drawers in my kitchen than you can imagine and plenty of space to encourage me to have seasonal linens. I just wish with my whole heart that I loved to fold them when they were hot out of the dryer.

6. Balancing work and home. I’m so damn exhausted on Saturday that I let my Dumpling veg out in front of the TV or electronics. I let her eat popsicles. I’m THAT mom who overcompensates for the mom guilt of school + daycare that puts a 6 year old into a 40 hour work week. It’s shitty and I feed her more corn dogs than her older siblings got to eat. Little Red sees Twinkies in the cupboard and shakes her head at me.

LR: Where did these come from and WHO are you? We were never allowed to have these.

Me- Eat one, they’re gross. You weren’t missing out on anything. It’s just not a battle worth fighting. It’s a mermaid cupcake, not the end of the world. I’m sorry I was so uptight. I’ll buy you some if you want.

LR- Ew… they are kind of gross.

7. Taking time for myself. I need a break so desperately I could cry. Too much work, too much stress, too much heartache, too much of everything frankly- and I wish I were better at insisting on taking a minute to feel better… even if that means drinking a cup of coffee in silence and going to work a half hour later.

I get a lot done in a day… but it’s always nice to have goals too. ♥


Day 16: What are your five greatest accomplishments?

  1. Motherhood. It’s every bit of who I am and my children are my crown jewels. I’m missing my firstborn and in being absent from my life he has taught me a million more things. Just when you think you know what you’re doing or have cracked the code in how to juggle it all, one of them throws up, moves out, gets in trouble, sings you a song, writes you a love note, pees in your bed, gets good grades, etc…. it’s forever changing. I think I have finally found a healthy balance of love and discipline while slowing down to have more tea parties. I think I’m finally a good mom. Phew.
  2. My career. I was in the right place at the right time to land my job but through my own hard work and perseverance I have landed in the #2 spot and carry a lot of responsibility as a result. I bring a lot of work home with me and the stress of it has given me a few bleeding ulcers. I don’t always want to go, but enjoy it most days and have the flexibility to put my Dumpling first without any hesitation, something that is priceless these days. I love my coworkers, and that hasn’t always been the case so I appreciate it wholeheartedly.
  3. My garden. I’m moving the whole damn thing this year, which is daunting to say the least. I’m also downsizing, because I can’t work full time and keep up with an acre of growing weeds and plants. I just can’t do it, so I’m building a fence around a quarter of the size of my old garden. I was going to skip a year and not plant, but my mental health depends on putting my hands in the dirt and having ripe tomatoes.
  4. My friendships. I never have time to see most of them, but I really am blessed to have the best friends in the whole galaxy. I’ve been painfully depressed for the past year and have distanced myself from 99% of the world in trying to put myself back together. I’ve been avoiding everyone while working to stop the endless flood of tears from ruining every good time. When you can’t pull it together, you find out who your real friends are. The people who reach out, shoot a text or call even though they know I wont answer. I’m incredibly blessed to have more than my share and they’ve gotten me through an awful year that threatened to get the best of me.
  5. My family. I have a good relationship with my mom, a healthy and loving relationship with all of my siblings and there’s nobody I avoid! That sounds ordinary, but trust me it isn’t. I don’t see them as much as I’d like but the fact that we’re all on good terms is nothing short of miraculous and I treasure the family dinners we missed out on for so many years and for such stupid reasons. Aside from a few red-hat wearing distant cousins, our entire family has healed old wounds and come back together. I hope and pray that the same happens with my son some day, and seeing all their faces around the dinner table as we laugh, gives me fresh hope.

Day 9: What are 5 passions you have?

  1. Truth. I don’t like grey area and I don’t like games. If you want to know how I feel, ask. I’ll tell you. Lying pisses me off more than anything and liars are weeded out of my life like the dandelions in my garden. I have a lot of patience, but I don’t fuck around with lies. Hurt me with the miserable truth and I’ll love and respect you forever, but lie and you’re dead to me.
  2. Knitting. It’s a guilty pleasure because I rarely have the time to turn my yarn into anything but silky soft loops of therapeutic peace on my needles. I have half a toy elephant dress finished and my baby nieces are growing at the speed of light. My Dumpling had to go with her daddy last month and it always makes her a little anxious at first. I knit her a bunny with a tiny heart on it’s chest that we spray with my perfume when she has to go. It’s a snuggly soft reminder that home is just a state of mind, a smell or a person. The bunny goes a long way towards making her feel right at home, right away… with her dad. Knitting is magic at your fingertips, all you need are a few sticks and some string.
  3. Writing. In the last year I’ve written three times as much as before, with most of it private or contracted. The work I’ve turned in professionally has earned me more financially this year as well. That’s not what has stuck with me though. I find it so much more satisfying that I wrote my own self out of feeling like warm trash this year. In yelling at the world through a keyboard, I taught myself to let shit go and move on. I love the entertainment of it all, but the therapy of it all is why I began writing in the first place. Sorry to all of you along for this crazy ride, and thank you for your shared perspective.
  4. Love. I love out loud in ways that make me painfully uncomfortable on occasion. I still wouldn’t have it any other way. I smile at strangers, I help people who are grumpy… it’s just who I am. It comes from my adorably sweet grandma Elaine and my equally spicy red-headed firecracker Grandma Afton, both of whom taught me to love the whole world and everything in it, to my toes. Sure, sometimes it ends badly and I end up hurt again… but at the end of the day, purely because I refused to give up, I like to believe my life will have been full of more love than I knew what to do with because I never let fear stop me from having faith.
  5. Gardening. My beautiful obsession with the dirt has gotten me through things I never thought I would survive. Losing my son, my house going through foreclosure (twice), an epic water leak in the yard, countless cheating boyfriends, 5 years of celibacy, having a baby alone from birth, poverty, depression, etc… You name it, I’ve coped with everything by putting on a headlamp and pulling weeds into the wee hours of the morning. Some of the worst and most insurmountable pain can be soothed by digging potatoes and beets. Some of my greatest heartache has only been kept company by tomato plants in need of staking, peppers in need of picking and long, quiet rows waiting for a fresh blanket of straw. When I’m at my breaking point and in desperate need of a reminder to keep myself grounded… I take my shoes off and stick my bare feet in the dirt.

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What are you passionate about?

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