Sunday, August 26, 2012

So, where did we leave off....?!?

Ah yes, I had wandered off (in the literal and figurative sense) for much needed
muddling, mulling and mucking my way thru a great deal of non-life-threatening
but heart wrenching angst, longing for a sign of some sort or another....

The back story?
Short and sweet (or as sweetly as I'm able right now, lol)
is that for a very long time when my paint brush was still and my heart was open
and amid the moments the farm hasn't been a whirlwind of calamity, lol
I've poured my heart and thoughts, observations and reactions into a manuscript of our story.

The story she and I share. Of how this old farm and I saved each other.
She and I and a cast of many, many others. It's a simple, funny, somewhat (hopefully) insightful tale of how life will sometimes go miserably wrong thru no fault of your own.  Events beyond your control will leave you helpless - short of starting over & beginning a whole new life from the ground up. The series of kindnesses, heartaches, victories, and coincidences that occurred again and again. Each a piece of the story with so many surprises along the way.

A tiny little book that I never (ever) intended to be 'significant' although it mattered greatly to me. I think that for years it has been my therapy (as much as the farm itself), my journal, and my solace. I hoped that perhaps my little book would encourage or cheer or amuse a handful of other like minded souls. I thought some out there would be interested in what it was like to rehab a hopeless old farm. And barn. And tractor. Or maybe there were others that, like me, had their life-plan destroyed and left in need of a rebuild because of unbidden changes. On my more self-critical days I thought maybe someone would decide to read it just because they liked its odd title or the still-only-an-idea-in-my-mind book cover lol.  Best of all I was on track for sending it out into the world to share with others.

But a new footnote was added to the story when a couple of weeks back when I learned that a verbal commitment and a confirmation of intent do not a reliable commitment make....
As it was explained to me: the current dynamic shift in market & sales from print publications in favor of e-publishing (which we currently do not offer) has forced us to re-evaluate all pending & intended but non-contractual commitments (which was, of course, very much within their rights).  So within steps of the finish line, amid typing out the last chapter and edits, the door was closed. And how foolish of me not to have forseen this possibility. How naive. Sad, frustrated and I admit, angry, I found myself left with nothing but the closing words:
"As we continue to feel your work holds merit we encourage you to pursue e-publishing your manuscript thru a suggested e-publisher or personally "

Ah yes, indeed.
Do I seek to re-sub to the 'suggested e-publisher' and begin that dance once again?
Or self publish?
And if only I had the vaguest notion or any experience of how to e-publishand then e-market, and then, and then... 
(well you see where all the pondering came to be necessary).

Many walks, much research, more walks and ok I confess a tiny little bit of
feeling sorry for myself with a side of feeling stupid for not requiring a firm commitment ensued for a couple of weeks. All the while wondering what was best, right up to and including scrap heaping the little book all-together. No option was off the table.

And then....

Then the almost funny 'sign' appeared one day in the old farmhouse laundry room.
The wind was WILD that day, from an odd direction. The curtain flapped and sailed in the relentless wind as tho it were intent on battering me. It was in the 90's and far to hot to close the window. I have no curtain retainer hook or pull back on this huge curtain as it seldom moves so I had no way to restrain it as it pummelled me! lol.  As I employed an 'alternate solution' I saw my signal, my sign.
And I took a picture to show you, even as my mind was saying
When the unexpected happens, the best solution lies in what you can do for yourself

So, as of this writing I have to once and for all decide if this tiny book of mine about a little farm in a little valley that has taught me so much about life and myself and has made me laugh and cry and grow is worthy of pursuing. Worthy of learning how to e-publish on my own, so I can hold the reins.  

The farm and I have learned together to do many MANY things I never thought I'd be able to do in my entire life. The question is, should e-pub-pursuing the little book of 'our story' be one more????

*Thank you SO much for each and every comment/email of encouragement and concern shared yesterday and
before. Your input, thoughts and caring have been (and are)  of more comfort and value than I could ever tell each of you!*

Friday, August 24, 2012


I'll be back with a post tomorrow!
Many thanks to everyone who's sent along words of encouragement
concern and cheer as I've muddled and mulled.
I count myself lucky x a million for each of you
for each comment or email.
Especially considering it was a crisis of the heart and not a life crisis.
I'm amazed and grateful for your kindness.
The cloud is an amazing place (for a 'non-place'! lol)

Thank you

More soon!
(and it's a back to cheerful more soon)   :-)

Thursday, August 9, 2012


My apology for having missed Monday Muse-Day this week

I won't lie. Recent days have been intense and unsettling.
Decisions to be sorted, approaches to be considered.
Actions, re-actions and emotions to be
evaluated, bridled and reined in, down to a functional gallop
(rearing and snorting render no progress down the trail).

  I wish there were 'signs'
direct, straight-forward indicators
advising me of the best course at such

I'd love some indicator(s) to assist as I choose
 direction, action, words, tone, bonding, severing
facial expression, solutions(s), bribe, threat? (lol),
commitment, abandonment, encourage-discourage-ment.
Rally the forces, go it alone, stop, proceed, turn 180, turn 360,
scrap an idea, an entire project, scrap the naysayers, scrap some relationships,
confront, avoid be angry, annoyed? Be relieved, released.
Refocus? Redirect?
Responsibility? Resolution? Reconstitution? 

 (as in the personal variety)

You know, I need only a subtle sign from the universe...
That would be astoundingly helpful.
 Because there are times, there are situations,
there are dynamics vectored in such a way
that it is simply impossible to even guess the 
the correct choice - in both practical terms
and karmic terms...

A low-key straight-forward
sign from the universe.
That's what I need...

So, if I'm a bit absent from 'woman seeking' it's only due to the fact
 I'm out walking, pondering, considering, 'sign-seeking' ...
Amid the woods and fields, within the old barn timbers.
I'll seek a word with the sparrows and crows.
Excellent consultants, one and all....

Wish me luck

**nothing health related or dreadful afoot,
so to those who would worry don't.
Tis all life/work/interaction/decisions related.
Maddening but (happily) not threatening
(except to my sanity :-) **

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Elements Of Visual Texture

Cities, towns and suburbs are defined by certain
visual elements. Concrete, glass, asphalt, plastic wood.
Linear, geometric, precise, angular.

Farms and ag districts are defined by wide array of ever changing
visual elements. Without doubt concrete, glass, wood are major aspects
of many old farm houses and barns. Yet there's also softer
visually random rubble stone, cobblestone and dry stack stone in walls
and foundations. Far from linear, geometric or angular - tho precision
of skill and placement is essential if they are to survive.
So even at 'ground level' the visual input on the farm differs.

 The true sirens' song of ever changing visual textural beauty on the farm
belongs to the fields and woodlands. Alongside livestock and crop planting
nature creates her own vignettes. Painting the paths with grasses tall and soft
or waxed and shining in the sun. Wildflowers that mock my efforts to 'garden'.
 Rock strewn paths that have been part of this farm since the 1800's are the work
of nature and time. Color, texture, depth of contrast ~ mossy rockery, species mixes abound. There are hundred and hundred of variations on these acres. Shape and color variants are too numerous to count.
From a vibrant splash of color in the wild berries to deer runs. Varied shapes of animal tracks, domestic and wild decorate the stream mud and the sheltered woods. Deep and verdant green in the tree and rock moss. Endless shape, size, types of large rock along the paths, amid the wood lots.
Some moved, located by those who farmed or grazed the land generations before my time. Some randomly arranged in ancient glacial days and never (ever) touched or altered.
In the years I've walked, worked, rested, explored, sought center and dreamed on this farm I've discovered that time is another 'texture' that is a visual element on the farm....

Less angular, geometric, reflective.
More soft, swaying, seasonal.
Always changed, yet ever the same.
Flowing yet static, stable.

Perhaps, all combined, what I see here is the visual texture of time?

Friday, August 3, 2012


Drippingly hot temperatures yet again today led me to take a
drive along the shady country back roads. There's no lack of shade
at the farm, but windows wide open at 55mph provides a
much higher volume of air movement. And depending upon how
strong or weak willed I am there's the possibility of stopping for
ice cream on the way home from such a drive....

Zipping along I noticed a simple sign - nothing more than sale today
with an arrow. On a whim I followed and arrived within moments
at a tiny but charming 'town center' - a town whose name ended with

Isn't if curious (and lovely) how many towns are something-villes?
Shortsville, Mechanixville, Bartonsville
Always rings warm, friendly, pleasant to me.
A bit down the road I found the sale ~ under ancient old maple trees
the shade and treasure beckoned, come hither.  The gentleman in charge
was charming, talkative and happy. We exchanged a bit of banter and then
I strolled the tables overflowing with interesting bits.

My favorite spot was the 10 cent table
Indeed, perfect items for ten cents each
He shared stories about several of the items I'd chosen
his weather worn face smiling, he's eyes alight with memories.

With my arms around a dusty old cardboard box overflowing with
wonderful 10 cent items I headed towards home. I thought how truly
grand it was to have come across someone smiling and friendly. 
I thought how nice it was he'd shared the memories of the pieces
he was passing on - those items & their stories now mine.  

Windows all down, driving back to the farm from something-ville
content and with treasure, I decided to skip the ice cream.
I'd already found  my 'treat' for the day.....

Hope your day held something 'treat-ish' too  :-)

Thursday, August 2, 2012

It's Been One Of Those Days....

1) The toilet filler valve was leaking - replaced
2) New one fills so slow seasons change between tank fills
3)Replaced again with another new filler
4) See two
(no, I'm not kidding)

All set to paint and now, just as I have days free to paint
it's going to

Sort of a twist your shorts day for certain

I'm going for a walk in the low pasture
amid views like this

(how they've survived this drought I know not)!

And whilst I walk
I'll re-re-re-re-remind myself of the difference
between real problems and simple knicker-twisting annoyances

The toilet will fill properly eventually
More paint will be put on, just later than  I  had planned

 I'm off to the low pasture now ~ taking my camera
(for more pics ~ would you like to see)?

PS *I'm now officially done whining, lol*
Thanks for listening :-)