Saturday, September 27, 2008

Tiny Steps

Tiny steps are my back's salvation...and totally frustrating. I spend half my time talking myself into relaxing. It's hard to relax when I know that we have 4 weeks(if we're lucky) to complete our scaled down project list. This little voice in the back of my head keeps whispering, "Winter is coming, winter IS coming, winter IS COMING, WINTER IS COMING!" I silence this voice by going outside and inhaling the heady scents of FALL...breathe deeply, relax, enjoy.

The glitches continue...
Wednesday, I donned my MP3 player and caulked the last 2 walls of the new porch. Z and I were prepared to prime the porch on Thursday. THEN, our water was turned off on Thursday afternoon! The water has been off 3 times in the past week! If you'll recall, the same thing happened last fall. Don't bother telling me that I could've painted without water. I'm NOT a neat painter. I need water.

Our water lines are disintegrating faster than they can be repaired. For the past 10 yrs, we've all been paying $25/quarter into an escrow fund to replace the lines. Last year the village said that we had enough money to start replacing the lines. Did they start replacing the lines? NOPE! They continued to patch the lines as they broke. NOW, the village decided to pay a firm $200,000 to STUDY the problem. WHAT?! You KNOW where all the lines are. Start digging them up and replacing step at a time! IDIOTS!

Friday it rained, as expected. No painting for us!

What have I been doing to relax?
My back prevents me from staying in one position for long. Sitting, and standing in one place are the hardest on me. After work, I've been laying down for an hour. Then I get up and tackle small tasks, with Z's assistance. When I feel a strain on my back, I sit down and read for 15 minutes, which is all the longer I can sit. It takes forever to accomplish anything, but I'm learning patience with myself.

The most relaxing, and enjoyable project I'm doing is cooking. We bought Jessica Seinfeld's book, and have started applying her techniques into our menus. So far Z and I have pureed, portioned, and frozen, spinach and carrots. This week we'll add squash, green beans, and beets to our supplies. Z has been very creative with his ideas on which veggies to add to our regular recipes. Last week we added the spinach to meatloaf. Z was amazed that it didn't change the flavor, or texture, of the meatloaf. Z giggled when his Dad(L hates spinach) ate spinach without realizing it. Z can't wait to try Jessica's recipe for chocolate cake, which includes both spinach and beets.

Today is clear and cool; a perfect day to move the sidewalk. No, I won't be lifting the sidewalk blocks. My part of the project involves measuring, and running the rototiller to level off the area where the blocks will be laid. Then my guys can start moving the blocks. It's supposed to rain again tomorrow, so wish us luck!


At 9/27/2008 10:58 AM, Blogger Wandering Coyote said...

I would totally get together with the other people paying that $100/year into the escrow fund, organize a petition, and PROTEST. What a bunch of BS!

At 9/27/2008 11:51 AM, Blogger Sonja said...

Ugh. I hope your back feels better soon. It's hard to remember to be in the moment and actually live when there's so much to be done.

At 9/27/2008 12:12 PM, Blogger tshsmom said...

WC, if I wasn't trying to reduce stress right now, I'd be doing exactly that!
I have a sinking feeling that the "study" might be a federally mandated thing. GRRRR!

Thanks Sonja! I have a knack for creating my own stress. It's a hard thing to unlearn.

At 9/27/2008 2:45 PM, Blogger Jeannie said...

You accomplish more with a bad back than I do without. I wish I had your discipline. I'm afraid that when I'm tired I just pup out.

At 9/28/2008 11:18 AM, Blogger tshsmom said...

Jeannie, I've got to learn to quit when I'm tired. I keep pushing myself to the point of exhaustion, and that's where the problems start. :(

At 9/29/2008 1:53 AM, Blogger tweetey30 said...

Glad to hear things are getting better for you. Just take it easy and I will catch up with you later ok. I am tired. I am going to go make Jeff's lunch an head to bed myself..

At 9/29/2008 7:52 AM, Blogger VV said...

My back's hurting just reading all the chores you have to do! Delegate as much as is possible. Take care of yourself.

At 9/29/2008 9:50 AM, Blogger VV said...

Hi. In case you go looking, I deleted my blog. The cookies were saved when I went to leave a comment on a local blog so I had to pull it. Don't know when I'll have time to recreate another blog. *sigh* You'd think I would have learned better the last time.

At 9/29/2008 2:45 PM, Blogger Helene said...

That's quite a bit of work you've got there. Not helping the lack of water. How stupid is it that they want to spend 200K in a white collar firm, when really it is what it will cost blue collars to actually fix the problem. See, that's exactly the kind of thing I find upsetting, makes me want to go all the way there to kick some butts. How did these idiots convince your city council that they were going to help with the issue without getting their hands dirty?

Anyway, that's really cool that Z is bringing new flavours to your table, however, I'm not sure about a spinach and beet Chocolate cake. I had a chocolate cake for tea with chocolate sponge layered with chocolate mousse and that was divine.

At 9/30/2008 6:48 PM, Blogger tshsmom said...

Tweets, things aren't really getting better; I'm just learning to ignore them. Tough job! ;)

VV, Not AGAIN!! I'm grateful that nobody in our tiny town blogs, that I know of. It makes it easier for me to maintain my anonymity. ;)
You'd better get another blog up or you'll wear yourself out answering emails from me.

Helene, I KNOW!! Gov't red tape is such a waste of money! They KNOW where the water lines are, so just dig them up and replace the lines.
Temporarily patching the lines, and funding this study, is eating up all of our escrow money. Next spring we'll be out of money and the water lines will still be rotting away.

None of the people who tasted the cake on Oprah knew that there were veggies in it. Keep this book in mind, just in case your little angel won't eat her veggies. ;)

At 9/30/2008 10:12 PM, Blogger Cherie said...

I do wish you luck. And I wish your back luck. I laughed when I realized that you have the same little voice in the back of your head as I do - shouting the Winter Is Coming refrain.

And, yes, idiots! Are they running Wall Street, too?

Please give Z a good pat on the back (I'm sure he'd shun a hug from a stranger) for all the help he gives you. Well done, Z!

At 10/01/2008 6:50 PM, Blogger Bridget Jones said...

What WC said!

Am very glad that your baby steps are working, Tshsmom! Hope that the back readjusts itself quickly--that is one nasty type of pain. But it's good that you get to enjoy autumn too.

At 10/02/2008 6:34 PM, Blogger tshsmom said...

Cherie, yup, the little idiots graduate from small town politics and become the BIG idiots in charge of our federal gov't and Wall Street.

LOL, Z doesn't mind hugs, as long as they're not in public.
We have a friend who'll run across a parking lot yelling "There's that handsome dude!", and then give him a big hug. After the first 2 times, he quit blushing. Now he just stands there, while being hugged, saying "Yeah, yeah, yeah".

Bridg, it's frustrating because it gets better so slowly. Now I'm almost back to normal, but I have to be extra careful not to undo my progress.

At 10/04/2008 7:15 PM, Blogger Gardenia said...

Oh boy - I hope you have not hurt yourself seriously. When it doesn't get better in a week or ten days, it scares me! My daughter finally cajolled an MRI out of her primary - he said she was fine, so she got a copy - she has a bulging disc and facet effusion, of which we can find little information on.

I'm hurting so badly, I take drugs - well, actually Lyrica which is not narcotic, but it sure kills the pain if you can stay on your feet - I cleaned the kitchen baseboards today - hooo haaaaahhhaaa! Ten pounds of cat hair pushed up on them from them damn mops. I can stuff four pillows for our personal use when the hair dries out. Just kidding.

Talked to my 82 year old mother who is freaking out because winter is coming too -and in northern climates that could be anyday - that's enough pressure for ten back aches....

Take care of yourself, ok? Wish you were here - I would drag you to the beach, find a warm piece of sand and turn your back to the sun and let the good earth absorb some of that stress. I need to go too.

Camie Vog can probably tell you - the reason it is so blooming hard to reduce stress is that we think we are handling it in our head, but it bypasses our head and settles in our bodies.

At 10/05/2008 9:47 AM, Blogger tshsmom said...

Gardenia, I've had recurring problems with my back for the past 33 yrs, when I injured it.

Over the years, I've discovered that I can remain relatively pain free by managing the stress in my life. You and Camie Vog are 100% correct, our bodies pay the price for ineffective stress management!

Sun-warmed sand sounds like the PERFECT cure for me! Too bad my budget won't cooperate.
Thank you for that mental picture! I used it last night when I put the heating pad on my back. I imagined that the pad was the warmth of the sun, and conjured the sounds of breaking waves in my mind. My muscles magically unclenched, and I managed to sleep through the night.
THANK YOU for that scenario!

At 10/05/2008 11:55 AM, Blogger Squirl said...

Good luck with your back! Please take good care of it. Too bad you have to work such a physical job.


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