Something a Little Bigger Than a Microblog

It is extremely smokey here on the east coast. It kind of looks like how it does when it's just cloudy, like when rain is blowing in, but there's more of a, well, tan tint to it? It smells too. Not really nice the way a camp fire does, but kind of imposing.

This happened couple years ago when there were more wildfires in California – it just blows across the country. This will blow over, but it's concerning. I don't remember this much from when I was younger, and I'm fearing this is a new normal.

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I'm keeping my fingers crossed for my garden this year. It's getting warmer, though the nights are still cool, and I've got several tomato plants in the ground. I'm trying to stay ahead of watering and weeding.

There are peppers too, sweet Hungarian (aka banana) ones. I have some seeds for hotter Hungarian peppers as well which I need to plant and will probably start indoors. Peppers like it warmer before they germinate, it seems.

I've tried pumpkins in the past, with varying success. There's a woodchuck in my yard, which makes it difficult. I have a fenced-in area for the other vegetables, and a couple pumpkin vines growing there, but the space makes it difficult. There's a fenced-in square the previous owners of my house built to contain their dogs, and I did bury some pumpkin seeds in the remains of a rotting tree stump, so we'll see how that goes.

I also have some onion seeds sprouting, which need to go into the ground. And a couple cloves of garlic I planted, as well as a couple potatoes that sprouted. Hopefully I get something fresh.

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I've found myself moving around for work. That is, the last couple moves I did were for work, although before that it was for college. It was usually about picking a company, and then deciding I could deal with the area it was in, and then moving there. This has worked out okay, but now that I've been in the workforce for over a decade it kind of makes me think.

In a way, I don't mind this. It's been a way to get me to go to a new area, which I like. I haven't moved to any place terribly far from where I grew up, yet, but I'm decidedly away from home. And a new job is a new adventure, a way to get someplace else.

On the other hand, it's worth thinking about whereabouts I would actually want to end up. And that, I'm not sure of. Not specifically, at least. So I guess right now I just go where the work is.

I'm not solidly planning on going anywhere, but I can see opportunities on the horizon. And despite trying to look on the bright side of moving around for work, it would be nice for that not to be the only thing you relocate for.

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It's getting nicer out, and I'll have to go and build a fire some night. I have plenty of downed branches saved up that I need to get rid of anyway. Firelight is nice, especially on a clear night.

Luckily, I don't need to rely on it. I don't use a lot of electricity, even with a file server running all the time. And that's not strictly necessary. Electricity is a great thing when you think about it, light when you want it, without the danger of fire.

When it's there, of course. My power is fairly reliable, with only one really long outage I can remember while I've lived here. Otherwise it's flickered now and then. But, it works. And it works well.

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All of a sudden it seemed to go from winter straight to spring. Now, it's in the 90s (F) outside, sunny, and just generally pleasant. Part of my yard is fenced off as a garden, and I need to go out and dig it up a little bit, to turn up the soil. Back in fall I left a blanket of leaves there, these need to be raked out as well. I'm hoping for a nice year.

I want to try pumpkins again. My yard has some nice spaces for them, but they usually get eaten by wildlife. The garden can work, but I only have so much space. I may try a couple vines there, and prune them.

I also want to try banana peppers. I've never grown them before, and love them on things like pizza. It may be better to do these in a pot, however.

Tomatoes are a good standby, as they're amazing when fresh and not too difficult. Grape tomatoes especially.

And then there's catnip. It's come up again after winter before, and I'm not sure if it will this time. But George likes it now and then, so I'll do a plant or two.

Now that it's April, I want to try to get on top of these things. Especially since while today was warm, it's not consistently like that yet.

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I still have a Christmas tree up. It's the beginning of April, and the ornaments are off. It's an artificial tree, with clear lights. Most of them – a few bulbs have gone out, and I replaced them with colored lights.

It's late, and I have it on while watching TV. This is why I've left it up, as a soft light source for the room. It complements the night nicely.

I often stay up late, something I'd like to not do as much. But it can be nice at night.

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I have a pro/con relationship with clutter. My home can be tidy when things are organized, but when I start working on something disorder creeps in. I maintain some level of clutter, but it takes a while for me to restore it to a more clutterless state.

The clutter is sort of like a mental block, or it can be. It makes me put off doing something about it, because then I'd have to remember how I had everything before. Or, God help, if I introduced something new that wasn't originally part of the clutter ecosystem. Then I have to reevalute how things were previously. This all makes it difficult for me to step out of my routine, and do new things... Because the clutter is in the way, if only because the fact that I should do something about it takes up mental real estate.

On the other hand, I usually get clutter because I have actually been doing something. And if it's the right circumstance, it can keep me on track, in a weird way. A simple example is building a project on a table in the basement, and having everything out – it's right there where I need it, as opposed to digging through a shelf. Yes, I could organize things better, and that is a longer-term goal. However, despite mental blockage, I do appreciate things being in a state of flux sometimes.

Part of this is exhaustion. It can be difficult to work on something like tidying up or making progress on a project when I just got home from work and am tired. I'd rather be making dinner or playing with the cat. And then when I get time I'd rather be doing other things. But when I can get into decluttering, that in itself is kind of a project, and sometimes I do keep at it.

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In the process of living life, you create. Maybe mundane things, like documentation for work, order while you clean your house, or footprints when you go for a hike. Something that wouldn't have come into being if you hadn't been there initiate it. Other times you deliberately create, perhaps as the main focus of your job, or just for fun. It could be building something, composing a song, or writing a blog post.

I think it's good to be able to do this, and stand back and appreciate it. For similar reasons to why it's good to get up and walk around after you've been sitting for a while. Creation is one way to recognize that we don't have to just take what the world throws at us, and conform to it. We can have a say as well.

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I'm going to head out and see my town's St. Patrick's Day parade, which is held earlier in March. It's a gray weekend, drizzly, with ice-crusted snow still on the ground. Still, it should be fun, nice to get out.

Spring is getting closer, even if we still have the chance of winter weather. Actually we got a pretty bad storm last April, so it can happen. But I'm about ready for sunnier days and warmer weather, and festivities are a nice touch.

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My garage needs cleaning. I've accumulated things there, Christmas lights, gardening tools, plastic totes, things in need of storage but not quite organized yet. It's not a big garage, but there's a good amount of space I could reclaim.

I might get a shelf. I might need some more totes, the original idea was to organize things that way. I think that the lights might take up at least two large ones.

I've thought about making a little work bench for out there. My main work area is the basement, but it would be nice to have one with a light in the garage too. For spring/summer/fall, mostly, since it's cold out there now.

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