Seriously, I think that is a lesson that we all can learn. Right now I’m not doing a terribly great job myself. I have an end goal in mind, and it is something that I want to get to before the end of April. That doesn’t allow for much pacing I’m afraid. Actually I have two end goals. 1) Get our house listed for sale. (Spring is the best time!) 2) Get the other property ready for beach rental season. The second one has a slightly longer time frame – that needs to be done by the end of May.
Getting a house ready for sale is a daunting task, it requires peering into every nook and cranny and figuring out how to make it look appealing and not repulsive. That is the reason why I had been focusing on those two damn closets in the master bedroom – they were chaos, pure and simple. Now it looks like two anally retentive people live in our house. My closets never looked so good. While I was waiting for the various coats of paint to dry I’ve cleaned out nearly every other closet in the house and I repainted and “staged” the dining room. It looked ‘ok’ before, but the paint color was a little polarizing so I figured my best bet was to change it to a creamy off-white. Neutral sells, or so they say. I actually really like the way it turned out.
Now I’m onto the master bathroom. I repainted it a year or so ago and replaced a lot of hardware, but at the time I avoided the shower like the plague. Payback time. I’ll be regrouting the shower shortly. Today my mind is addled from inhaling bleach fumes. Who needs to drink alcohol when you can kill just as many brain cells with chlorine gas. Whew! Mold always seems to grow in bad grout work. I’m on a time table here too – the glass enclosure has been torn down and a new one is on order. It is supposed to take 2 weeks and a week is already gone. Tick tock, my time to grout is running out. Once this is done I have to tackle the garage and the kitchen.
By the time I’m done with this little exercise I might not actually want to sell the house anymore, but longer term it is a necessity. Actually, I really don’t want to sell the house. It has been the best house we’ve ever lived in, but it is too big for a retirement pad.
Well, I think this lifestyle change is going to stick. It has now officially been three months since we made the switch in our household. I never in my wildest dreams thought that I would go vegan. I always had some issues with eating meat, but it never stopped me. I *loved* milk products and eggs. (can you say scrambled eggs and cheese?) Going vegan was a totally foreign concept to me. Then I got sick and I also learned I couldn’t tolerate milk products. I started to read more about food. I read The China Study and watched Supersize Me. I know a lot of people have issues with some of the studies in The China Study, but it profoundly impacted how I think about food and how food can impact cancer risk.
I had no idea what a difference it would make. Here are some examples – my cholesterol was a health 186 when I started. I recently had it checked again. Wow, down to 142. My husband’s blood pressure and cholesterol have taken similar nose dives as well. Both of us have lost weight. I dropped 13lbs and he’s down 25lbs. All of these changes happened before I retired, so that clearly wasn’t the cause.
The beautiful thing about all those wonderful changes is that they didn’t come at the cost of typical dieting. I am never hungry. I no longer track every morsel I eat in order to count calories (that plus exercise was my secret to staying slim). I don’t need to do these things anymore – ok I do exercise, but I don’t think that will ever stop – I love to feel strong and healthy. I eat as much as I want of the healthy things in our house and I’m now at the weight I was at in my early 20s. The last time I got down to this weight I was really trying hard to get there. This time, not so much. I even have dessert most nights. I’ve learned how to bake tasty cupcakes and breads without any eggs or milk.
The switch wasn’t easy, but I think that anyone can do it with a little bit of attitude adjustment toward the food industry.
Have you ever been in a situation where you ignore a problem in the hopes that it will just go away? I think we’re all guilty of this behavior. Some of us do it in our relationships, some of us do it in our work life, and some turn a blind eye toward annoying things in our lives that really aren’t that hard to remedy. It’s all a matter of getting started.
I’m finally addressing a space in my house that I have been turning a blind eye toward for the last 13.5 years. Yeah, it really has been that long. It is a closet that has developed a life of its own. When we built our house we didn’t put any shelves or clothing rods in it. We wired it with 220 so that “someday” we could put in a sauna. In the meantime it has become the junk collector. Too big to fit elsewhere? Stuff it into the closet. Boxes, suitcases, a monstrous wall hanging bookshelf was even sitting on the floor (sadly, it was filled with books).
This weekend I came to terms that the day when a sauna gets installed sadly will never come. We already have a hot tub, and we don’t use it as much as we could, I can’t imagine sinking money into a sauna too. Besides, we are getting close to pulling the trigger on selling our home and moving to something that requires less maintenance. No point in spending a boatload of money.
I managed to talk my husband into building out the closet from scratch. He did a wonderful job. Once the shelves were in place I took over. All that stuff has a shiny new coat of white paint on it now and the caulking is done. Tomorrow I’ll hopefully be able to paint the walls and then we can move all of his clothes out of the closet we are currently sharing. Wow, we’ll each have a closet of our own. I guess once we do that I should paint “my” closet too – it hasn’t been done for 13 years either and I don’t want something else that I am turning a blind eye toward.
The funny part is that I’ve been ignoring this for years and it has been grating on me. I should have the situation resolved within 4 days of being at home. It didn’t take 4 days – in fact it only took a couple of hours each day (except for Saturday when the emptying, building, and installing occurred). It is amazing how much of my energy was spent elsewhere when I could have fixed the situation with a few well chosen hours of work.
Well, it looks like the overall theme of this blog is about to change – big time. After 25 years of working in high tech I’m done. Finished. April Fool’s Day (appropriate?) was my last day at work, and today was my first day without a job and with no plans to find another one. I’ve waffled between the terms “sabbatical” and “retirement” and frankly, I’m not sure which one of those is most accurate. I’m taking it one day at a time, and I guess I’ll find out eventually. I’m hoping that an extended period in which I don’t have to be anywhere on a regular basis (and where I am not looking for a place to be on regular basis either) will lead to the rejuvenation of my creativity.
I have to admit, this decision was a lot more spur of the moment than I had anticipated it would be. It all started a few weeks ago when I woke up at 4am on a Sunday morning completely dreading going to work on Monday. It wasn’t the team I managed, it wasn’t my project, it wasn’t the company. It just was that I consider myself a entrepreneurial spirit and I found myself in a role in a large company that didn’t fit. In some ways it felt like I was wearing a jacket three sizes too tight. I finally had the ah-ha moment where I realized that this form of stress has continued to impact my health and my ability to recover from all the diagnoses that I’ve received in the last year. I needed a break.
I hope you stick with me and keep reading. The topics will change, but I am sure I’ll continue to apply my management skills to different types of projects. I might even start herding my cats for fun. That can’t be any more difficult than software developers can it?