Breaking out the titanium blessing shovel


Well, it’s been one heck of a week.

The highs and lows have been of an epic roller coaster level, from one minute to the next. And, while I know that bad things don’t last, I’ve had a really hard time trying to be my normally plucky self.

So, it’s that time again….time to dig out the (cue echo…) Titanium-um, um, um  Blessing-ing, ing, ing  Shovel-el, el, el. 

Titanium is a tough substance, so you can keep digging even when it looks like the BS life has been throwing at you is too deep to find your way out of. My trusty shovel has gotten me out of more piles of yuck than I can count. I think it got a good workout this week.

Yes, I’m digging deep today, through all of the baloney I’ve been wading through. Sometimes you just have to clear all the emotional clutter away so you can appreciate the blessings that are within easy grasp. So, I’ve compiled a quick list of things I am grateful for now that I have had a chance to get over myself and take a look around.

1. Autumn is upon us. The air is crisp and cool, and the leaves are turning. It’s a lovely time of year, and a nice long Indian Summer looks promising. I love it when Autumn is extended all the way through November. Pretty soon the farmers will start burning fields, and the air will smell amazing.

2. Younger Son has had a tough time with ankle injuries this football season, and hasn’t got to play much at all. Last night he was able to play with the Varsity team, and got in some good tackles. It was great to see his happy face when the game was over.

3. My sister by choice has started a blog called My Dandelion Wine, and she wrote a poem about Autumn, and how it feels to experience it. Reading this poem really helped to jerk me out of my rut this week. I encourage you to stop by and give it a read.

Well, that’s all I have time for today. I hope this weekend brings many easily observed blessings your way, and that you have a fabulously rejuvenating weekend.

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A close call at The Cube Farm


I am one of those American’s with two jobs. I have a regular day job, and then I work at The Big Box Store on evenings and weekends. Where do I work during the day? Let’s call it The Cube Farm. For those of you unfamiliar with the term, a Cube Farm is a really big building with a crap load of people working in an endless field of cubicles.

It just so happens that I work at a Multinational Cube Farm Operation, which is going through a phase of restructuring. We got an announcement this morning that a part of the restructuring would cause 400 people in the US to lose their jobs, and another 200 open positions would be eliminated…everyone who was affected would be notified by the end of the day.

It just so happens that my position, and that of my partner, were some of those that were done away with. We got lucky, though. There were open positions that needed filling, so they just moved us to those jobs. She and I won’t work together anymore after the 1st of the year, and that makes me sad. We only got to work together for five months, but it has been grand. I sure will miss my new boss too. Where I’m going, they are hiring for a new supervisor, so I don’t know who I’m working for just yet. Keep your fingers crossed for me that it is someone as great as my last two supervisors have been.

As much as I hate that I have been shuffled around and stuck in a job that I never wanted, there is a lot of good news here:

1. My kids will continue to get fed.

2. I didn’t have to take a pay cut, like some people I know at The Cube Farm who did.

3. I still have my benefits.

4. If I really hate my new job, I can start looking around The Cube Farm for something more interesting after a year.

5. I can take my time and look outside of The Cube Farm if I choose to, and I’m giving that some thought. I’m seriously giving it some thought.

The people I feel bad for tonight are those 400 people who got let go. Yes, they got a severance, but they still have to try to find a job.  In this economic climate that’s not easy, especially this time of year.

It’s time for me to hit the rack, and I’m going to go to sleep tonight thanking my lucky stars that I will wake up tomorrow employed. One more reason to feel blessed.

 

Walking barefoot in November…a bigger blessing than I would have imagined


Today is a good day. I’m done working at The Big Box Store for the day, and I’ve had my lunch. But that’s not the best part. The best part of today is that it is 61 degrees outside, and I walked to my mail box today in my bare feet. In November.

In North Dakota. That’s right…”We’re having a heat waaaaaave, a tropical heat waaaaave….” Whoo!!

Usually we’re shoveling show right about now. In fact, we already had our first snow storm of the year, but it has all melted away, and life is good again. Or at least it was feeling pretty good until they showed up.

My ex came to pick up Younger Son today, and just happened to bring his sleezeball girlfriend with him. After a year, one would think that I would be over having to witness the reality of this woman, but for some reason, it still messes with my head. This woman has some pretty big brass ovaries, shoving herself into my life and the lives of my kids. She’s probably going to want my grandchildren to call her ‘Grandma’…

…not while I have breath in my body. But, I digress.

Anyway, as I was saying, it was such a blessing being able to walk in the grass in my bare feet, and feel the sunshine and warm breeze on my skin. It doesn’t blot out the bad stuff, but it goes a long way to making me feel better. These warm days are precious and numbered. The Weather Guy says we’ll be back to the regularly scheduled weather program by the middle of the week. Time to get back outside and enjoy it while I can!

A Winter Whiner Who’s Digging for Blessings in the Snow


It was inevitable that Winter would show up. We were so terribly spoiled with the beautiful Indian Summer we experienced this year, and it seemed like it could just go on forever. Just this weekend we were wearing shorts and no jackets. Today, we have four inches of snow on the ground, and blizzard conditions. Uff-da.

If Old Man Winter were real, I would have some words to share with him. I am quite sure that I wouldn’t ever say a large portion of those words in front of my Mother.

When I think of Old Man Winter, the picture in my mind’s eye is of a wizened, bitter old man who paces back and forth in his Ice Cave of Doom. He rubs his hands together slowly as he concocts the next big storm, and as he looks up you can see the hard, evil glint in his eye. He chortles menacingly. That’s right…there’s menacing chortling going on. How rotten is that? I’m also quite sure that Old Man Winter is a close relative of Murphy. They are quite a diabolical duo.

Could it be that I am personalizing my nemesis a little too much? Yeah…could be. Do I like winter? Only when it placid and gentle and picturesque, like a Currier & Ives picture.

Here I am having my own personal pity-party, complete with blizzard. So, in order to get my attitude out of the snow bank, I’m trying very hard to count my blessings today. The big one, sitting right on top of the pile, is that my parents made it home yesterday afternoon, just in the nick of time. They’d been traveling for three days to get home, and drove in just as the snow started to really blow. They looked so tired, but at least they are home and safe.

Now it’s time to go get out the shovels. Time for the winter cardio!

Digging deep…this morning’s blessings


With Autumn approaching, I find that I’m feeling hum drum, and just down in general. Don’t get me wrong, I love this time of year with the beauty of the changing trees, the Autumn smells in the air, and just the fresh crisp feel of the season. It’s a beautiful time of year, and yet I find the specter of the coming Winter overshadows it to the point of making me feel some dread. I’ve been told that we should expect 2 1/2 degrees colder temps on average, as well as 4 more total inches of snow this winter. We had a hard time finding places to put it all last year, and I can’t imagine trying to store more of the stuff. Uff-da….

Anyway, in the effort to drag my attitude out of the basement and into the light, I’m digging deep, with my trusty snow shovel,  for whatever blessings come to mind this morning, and they are as follows:

1. When the ground freezes and the snow falls, there will be no chance that I will get leakage in my basement from a severe thunderstorm.

2. I am fortunate enough to have two strong sons to help me shovel out. I also have some extra cash I’m going to pay my neighbor with the Bobcat to clear my driveway when the snow is so deep it would take us hours to clear by hand.

3. I have a have a nice warm winter jacket, which I affectionately call the Big Brown Bear suit. It’s never failed me, except that the pockets have holes that need sewing up. After 12 years, if that’s the only malfunction that happens, no big deal. I have a needle and thread.

4. Snow really is pretty. There’s nothing more peaceful than when the land has a fresh coat of snow on it. Not only is it peaceful to see, but it lends an extra measure of quiet to everything that is like nothing else.

5. While Christmas, in all its commercial glory, is not my favorite holiday, I love how everything is covered with lights at Christmas time. When everything is so dark that we hardly get to see the sunshine, it’s nice to have those little lights twinkling in the darkness. Sometimes I take the long way to where I’m going just so I can take in some more of the holiday decorations.

6. I like holiday food. Some of the best traditional holiday food is only made in the Winter. Lefse is a good example. I learned how to make lefse last year, and I  plan on making homemade lefse for Thanksgiving and Christmas. No promises about Easter, it’s just too darned busy that time of year.

7. Speaking of holiday food, Thanksgiving is coming up. Thanksgiving is absolutely my favorite holiday. I live for roasting turkey, and making the whole dinner with all the trimmings. I love to have people over and make a big day of it. I can’t wait!

Well, I supposed that will have to be enough for now. It’s time to get the boys off to school, and me to work. I hope you all have a blessing-filled day.