Category Archives: Uncategorized

The Grass is Always Greener

We’ve been hit with the flu like a ton of bricks around here. Josephine started off on Saturday night, which meant Sunday was all laying around, watching yo gabba and cuddling. Oh yeah, and puking all over mama (not the cutest kid milestone).

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I was forced to sit all day, which was probably good for me, at any rate, I read almost an entire book. But then Monday night I got sick. And Tuesday morning I could barely move. I had to call in to work on the worst possible week (I am in the middle of training four new employees). I was at home and did nothing productive all freaking day. It got me thinking. How terrible is it that when I’m super busy, all I want to do is nothing all day, but when I am forced to do nothing by a crippling flu, all I want to do is be productive? So messed up.

Lessons Learned

We are officially living in one house now.  The process of moving has been much harder this time than I remember it being the last time we moved.  Maybe it is because we have Josephine, or maybe because I know it will be our last move for a very, very long time.  I suspect, though, it has to do with attitude. 

Last year, when Josephine was about a year old, Taylor and I took her to a wedding in Monterrey.  Josephine had just started walking, and for whatever reason we decided to just go for the wedding and not stay the night.  It was a long 3 hour drive there and 3 hour drive back, and Josephine was not thrilled with car rides over two hours.  To top it off it was raining, and being that it was a wedding for a friend of mine I had a nagging suspicion that Taylor did not want to go (which I was wrong about, but I was feeling guilty for having to drive for such a long time).  I went into the day feeling slightly grumpy about how it was going to go.  I was focussing on how hard it would be in the car, how we were going to deal with our newly walking daughter in a fancy country club, and how I thought Taylor really didn’t want to go to begin with.  I just had a bad attitude about the day. 

Of course, since I was focussing on the negative and ready for disaster, the day turned out to be hectic, aggravating, and not the best day we’ve had.  Despite the beautiful and sincere wedding (I have to say, the ceremony brought tears to my eyes, and I was thrilled to be able to share such a special moment with my dear friend and former coworker), I felt frantic, grumpy, and rigid.  Not the best for bringing a toddler to a new location, where being go with the flow and thinking on your toes really helps.  That experience taught me that if I start the day with a bad attitude, it makes a hard situation even harder.  If I start with no expectations, a positive attitude, and flexibility, my day goes much smoother.  And so it went with our move. 

I reset myself so many times over the course of our move, trying to keep my mood in check, staying positive, and focussed on the job to be done and the light at the end of the tunnel.  Overall, I think I did an OK job of keeping my attitude in check, but I had to constatnly remind myself of the wedding fiasco (so dramatic!) and the lessons I learned.

This path to living my life in a less lazy way is truly going to be difficult.  I know that and accept that.  The lesson I have taken away from the difficulty of the actual moving process has to be how much I can change my outlook and attitude my talking to myself (in my head, of course…I don’t want to look like a crazy lady), and resetting myeself when my resolve starts to stray.  I can’t claim to be even close to perfect with this, since I completely lost my shit a bunch of times the last few weeks, but I am working on it.  And that, my friends, is as much as I can do.  I suppose it’s as much about the journey as the destination…

In case you were wondering…

This is how you feed a toddler breakfast when you are moving and have no table. 

And yes, this is me procrastinating instead of cleaning.  I have half the Tioga house cleaned.  Just the living room, band room, kitchen, laundry room, third bathroom and office left to go.  Wow.  That sounds like a lot more than I thought.  Ugh!

And on and on it goes…

Well, we had Taylor’s old truck towed to our new home in the country today.  That is the last of our stuff.  Just cleaning to do and we are out.  It is kind of surreal.  We haven’t lived here long (almost 3 years), but we have connections to this house that go back many many years.

Taylor lived here when he was 19 or so.  It was his first home away from home back then.  This house has been the home base for Taylor’s group of friends (and my friends now too, but they were his friends since childhood) for the last 17? or so years.  It was in this home that Taylor began so many friendships, learned about himself, and grew into the man he is.  Taylor has so many memories in this house of parties, creativity, music, chilling out with friends, conversations, new loves and romances, and pizza guy skits among other things.  The pizza guy skits are probably  one of my favorite Tioga stories.  To pull off a pizza guy skit they would spend a day to dream up and create situations and skits to mess with the pizza guy.  For instance, one time they set up a murder crime scene with full on flashing police lights coming from the back of the house, a “dead” body, police investigators, the whole schebang.  When the pizza guy showed up the head detective started yelling something to the effect of, “Who ordered a pizza!  This is a crime scene, who fucking ordered a pizza?!”  Needless to say, it was years before the pizza places in town would deliver to Tioga again.  Neil (whose family owns Tioga) and Abe lived here the longest, logging something like 13 years living together before Neil got married (he lived at Tioga with his wife Espi the first year they were married) and Abe moved in with his now wife Genevieve.  I love hearing Tioga stories, some I was a part of, some I wasn’t .  There is something beautiful about a home that holds so many memories and good times.  So much creative energy and young ideals.

I first spent time at the Tioga house when I was 18 or so.  My friend Jennifer brought me over to watch Neil’s band Built Like Alaska practice.  Back then there were grape vinyards in the front and I was living in San Francisco.  Driving back to Jennifer’s house in Merced I remember thinking how country it all was (even though I totally grew up in the country of Merced).  Tioga, with the views, just seemed so secluded.  Apparently, Taylor lived here at the time, but our paths didn’t cross.  This was the first place I ever spent time in Oakdale.  In a way, it started my journey to where I am now.

In place of the vineyards, now a track home neighborhood named, "The Vineyards". Oh, development.

Tioga is also the home where Josephine was born.  Right in the back bedroom, in which so many of our friends have lived throughout the years.  She took her first breath here, took her first steps, and spoke her first words, all in this beautiful house.  This is where we became a family.  I feel so grateful to have gotten to bring this child into this world and begin her life in a home so full of love and friendship.  I know that her amazing, creative personality is in part shaped by the energy of this house.

My favorite picture ever. Our brand new family seconds after Josephine was born.

Although I am ecstatically happy to own such a beautiful country home, and hopeful and excited for the memories we will create there with our family and friends, leaving Tioga is bittersweet.  Although my 10 years of memories pale in comparison to the countless memories Taylor and our friends have here, my connection to and love for this place is strong.   I know the next family to live here (another of our friends, along with their beautiful daughter will move in soon) will feel all the love and beauty that this home has to offer. And with that I bid adieu.

Goodbye Tioga...thanks for the memories...

Movin’ on Up!

Every Little Bit Counts

Oh my goodness, over the course of the past week and a half we have been moving to our new home and HOLY CRAP!  it is testing my conviction to not being lazy.  Holy Crap!  I have been moving car load after car load after car load, and Taylor has been moving car load after car load after car load after freaking car load.  It’s unbelievable…we are just getting inundated with our own shit at our new house piling up over the new beautiful home that we created and it is so overwhelming.

Moving food is nasty, just saying.

I’ve really had to use a lot of crazy positive self talk to get myself through this move.  I don’t know how many times I have said, “EVERY LITTLE BIT HELPS”.  I take load after load and then I look at my stuff and it doesn’t look like I’ve done anything.  Yeah, that is what I have been feeling like.  Crazy.  EVERY LITTLE BIT HELPS.  That has gotten me through.  It’s as bad the first day as it is on the last day.  Let me tell you.

Forget the cheating. Moving music gear is why you should never date a musician. Seriously...so much music gear!

So far we have moved almost everything except a mirror, a large plant, hoses, and trash.  Oh lord, the trash.  We have so much trash at both houses.  Taylor will be taking two dump runs tomorrow.  It’s frustrating when  all you want to do is just make your new house your home, and instead you have to spend all this time cleaning and working at your old house.  I am done.  Done, done, done, done, done!

And on top of that I miss Josephine so very badly.  I have been dropping her at Ga Ga’s house every morning and not picking her up until 7 or 8 each night.  Not enough time.  Not at all.

Josephine loves her Ga!

But on a brighter note, Josephine is taking to the move exceptionally well other than waking up too early (hello, 5:50?  Whatever, Josephine.  You are lucky you are cute and funny). She is so happy to be at Buddy’s house.

She loves it, and it makes me so happy!

A play date, already?? Odessa came over while her dad, Brian, finished grouting our tile in the entryway. It was great fun watching the girls run through the house. Can't wait for more kid fun to come!

It’s coming together, slowly but surely.  But seriously, guys.  This has tested my resolve for being not lazy for sure.  And Taylor…Sorry I’ve been so bitchy.  It’s the heat and my aching back and knee.  I’ll return to normal shortly!

It's a miracle...to give us hope that it will all end soon, Jesus appeared in Taylor's sweat stains last night. A sign? Perhaps a sign to crank up that new Central Air that we just had installed 🙂

And a quick shout out to those who have made this move possible.  To my mother for listening to me freaking out about everything from my hurt knee to falling behind at work to the fact that I don’t have any food but I’m hungry.  Having you on the phone was a necessity for my sanity.  Thank you!  To our amazing friends who have really powered through and helped us out.  We would probably be dead or broken up if not for you all.  I thank you all with all of my heart!  And last but not least to the amazing Ga Ga:  Jane Young.  You have taken care of our daughter for days on end with nary a complaint.  I know she is probably running you ragged even though you would never say such a thing.  It is wonderful that we don’t have to worry about anything with Josephine while you are with her.  Thank you for being here to support us.  Taylor and I (and Josephine too) love you more than we could ever say.

Get back to work, Bo. But seriously, thank you for helping and for bringing us berries!

And now, back to loading crap up.  Because it’s the never ending move y’all.  And thank goodness we own this amazing home, because I am not moving again until I can afford to have someone move my shit for me.

My back yard. I can't wait to hang out there with friends. It's coming soon. I can feel it!

EVERY LITTLE BIT HELPS!

On moving with a toddler….

Today is a pretty exciting day here at the Websterson household.  Taylor’s band, The Good Luck Thrift Store Outfit is headlining the Great American Music Hall in San Francisco!  This is a big old deal, in my opinion, and I couldn’t be happier for him and them.  They are a really good band, and it’s always fun to see new people enjoying their music as much as I do.  These boys have talent!

The timing of our move is a little off, what with practice and the big show taking up a lot of our weekend (not that I am complaining.  I am super excited for tonight).  This morning Josephine and I took a load to the house to get a little more done.  It was her first time seeing the carpet and she LOVED IT!  She took her shoes off and ran around.  So much fun.  I don’t have much time as we are off to SF, but here are some pics of our day.

Did I mention we rented out one of our pastures to a mama horse and a baby horse. Ahhh, sweet!

 

Someone loves her new carpet!

 

And so it begins…

Well folks, I am officially off work for the next week or so to move into our new home!  Are you excited?!  Jumping for joy?! Can hardly stand it?!  I know, me too.  Now, calm down a minute and take a deep breath.  Phewwwwwww.

When I got to the house this morning, Taylor greeted me in front.  You see, the carpet was installed yesterday, which pretty much seals the deal.  The house is mostly finished (minus hooking up the new central heat and air, a tiny bit of grout work and tile sealing in the entry way, and plumbing the back bathroom, but hey, close enough for me!).  Taylor walked me in the front door and I almost cried.  Seriously.  Tears of joy.  This house is just beautiful.  I can hardly stand it.  When I spend time there I think of how amazingly lucky we are to have been able to renovate and do things the way we want them.  Then I start thinking about all the good times our family is destined for and all the love we will bring to the house, and BAM!, emotion city!

I am also totally nervous about my ability to keep this house and property up to snuff.  I have been having slight panic attacks realizing how much I want to do and how little time I actually have (and now for the breathing again, deep breath, calm down).  I know that we will come up with a system and a routine and things are going to just fall into place, but OH LORD!, that just hasn’t happened yet.

Today I spent my day (from about 10 am until 5:15 or so), cleaning the kitchen.  Seriously, cleaning the hell out of the kitchen.  My fingers are aching from the rub rub rubbing I did to try to get the paint marks off the cabinets that have been there since 1950 when the house was freaking built.  But it looks beautiful, no?

After all of that I swept the beautiful wood floors (did I mention we put in hard wood floors in the hallway, dining room, music area?  It is decadent!), cleaned up the sun room, and took a thousand “After” pictures.  I am so so so so so so so so so so very excited, and I am so grateful to Taylor and all the amazing work and love he’s poured into our beautiful home.  It really is just how we imagined it.  And now I will die of happiness.  The End. 🙂

Sour

I have felt so unmotivated recently.  All I want to do is sleep, but my mind won’t shut off and I end up staying up until midnight every night.  This is terrible, not good, counterproductive, crazy making stupid.  For reals.  It’s not helping my mood at all.

Today I had the day off and Josephine went to Ga Ga’s house around 10:30, and I, to my dismay, got (almost) nothing accomplished.  I was in a terribly sour (the sourest) mood.  I took my sour self to the house to screw on some light switch and plug faceplates, but when I got there Taylor told me that it would have to wait until later, since he would be switching out a lot of the plugs.  Grrr.  Sour mood got even sourer er er er.  So I spent an hour wiping down the old faceplates (such a colossal waste of time), and sorting out the ones that were no good (why didn’t I do that when I took them off, answer me that?).   Afterwards I decided to wash the dog, since Sir Buddy apparently had some ticks, and the flea medicine is apparently not killing the super strong fleas.  I wrestled Buddy to the ground, lathered him up and washed him off.  As soon as I was done he ran right over to the grass and rolled around in something nasty because, dammit, a dog should not be clean! (Gotta love his dedication to grunginess).

So stinky and clean!

After that I decided that I was done at the house (ahem, like I’ll ever be done), and I went to the one place that everyone should go when they are in a sour mood… WALMART!  Seriously, dumb decision.  Dumbest decision ever.   My dumbity was rewarded, however, when I found Taylor a black cowboy shirt in his size for five bucks.  Almost made it worth it that I stood in long lines, was almost run over by numerous people in the aisles, and was generally a scowling bitch who was annoyed at everyone (plus I left one of my bags at the check stand and had to go back after I was already on my way home.  Double grrr).  Maybe I should have just stayed home and napped.

I am still in a foul mood now, so sorry for the negative ninny post.  Not even Josephine and her cuteness could salvage my mood.  However, I read a quotation today that I feel I should share.

“Finish each day and be done with it.  You have done what you could.  Some blunders and absurdities have crept in; forget them as soon as you can.  Tomorrow is a new day.  You shall begin it serenely and with too high a spirit to be encumbered with your old nonsense.”     -Emerson

This is going to help me tomorrow, because today… well, let’s just say today can suck it.

Happy Fourth of July

On this here Independence Day weekend, I have a declaration to make!  I have partner guilt.  There, I said it.  Even though I know that I am doing my part by playing with, feeding, and taking care of Josephine when I am not at work, I feel super guilty about not doing enough out at the house.  I should inform you that Taylor does not do anything to make me feel this way.  He constantly reminds me that right now raising our daughter is more than enough.  I just simply wish I could be helping more.  This week Taylor was out at the house 7 days, working his butt off to get things finished.  Sure, I weeded Buddy’s pen and did a few other things, but I feel like I should contribute a bit more to the construction process (although it would probably drive everyone out there crazy since I would have no freaking idea what I was doing).

checking it out

Josephine and Taylor check out the tile.

Yesterday I went out to the house to bring Taylor lunch as he kicked ass and worked on  some projects (leveling the dining room floor and starting the master bathroom tile, woot woot!).  Today Taylor was out at the house at 7am irrigating, working on floors and tiles again.  It is taking all I can muster to give in and let myself do the job that I am doing already.  I am fighting off guilt and feeling lazy, but in the end, it’s good to know my role.  And I made Taylor homemade enchiladas to prove it.

Plus, how bad is it that I got to go swimming with this face twice this weekend?

face

Goats, Weeds and Dead Things

Yesterday I spent all day at the old homestead.  We are getting closer (hopefully) to the big move in, so I thought I’d spend my Wednesday off working to get us in the house more quickly.  After a late start due to a late sleeping toddler (Really, Josephine?  8:40.  Why can’t you do that on a Saturday?) and subsequently a late drop off to GaGa’s house (Code Name for Grammy Jane, courtesy of Ms. Josephine herself), I was ready to go bright and mid day early.

I spent the first part of my morning chasing asshole goats around the yard.  One goat in particular took great pleasure in (excuse the language) fucking with me.  She would look at me, jump up on the metal structure in the pen, look at me again to make sure I was watching her be an asshole, and then jump over the fence into the yard.  This happened FOUR TIMES!  Every time I would herd her back into the pen (thanks for the help Buddy, old dog) she would wait for me to get back to the house and out the gate until she would jump again.  And again.  And again.  And then again just for fun.  I screamed at her, I threatened her, and then I remembered what Taylor, my lovely fiancé, did to get the asshole goats to stop.  I used boards and large pieces of wood we have laying around to prop up and make a makeshift fence against the metal structure that asshole goat was using to make her escape.  Taylor is smarter than a goat.  I, apparently, am not.  I lugged the boards, and rearranged the boards (because the asshole goat figured out how to move the boards on her own.  Dumb smart goat), and then finally they were trapped.  Or rather, I’m pretty sure the goat just gave up fucking with me.

Oh look, the two asshole goats and their little buddy. Jerks

Next I moved into the house, where I cleared out debris and organized tools (which, in all reality, just made it difficult for Taylor to find stuff today).  It was pretty uneventful, but I felt totally proud of myself lugging the bathroom vanity out of the house and into the barn all by myself (MUSCLES!).  After some milling around the house and freaking out that I actually OWN this cool house and will live there (hopefully) soon, I decided to move into the yard.

Look how nicely I stacked the various construction items 🙂

Now, last week when I was out there with Josephine I started weeding the dog pen (because Buddy deserves a beautiful place to sleep too, you know).  Have you ever weeded a dog pen that has been neglected for a while?  Holy Hell!  I didn’t realize what I was in for.  First off, I had my spunky little girl with me, as I mentioned before.  Josephine was playing quietly in the dirt…picking dirt up, throwing dirt down, picking dirt up, throwing dirt down, Buddy was happily scooting around the yard, and I was decimating some weeds.  All of a sudden I smelled a foul stench that I quickly identified as a dead something.  I looked around and realized that Buddy was rolling around on top of a decomposing gopher carcass that had maggots (barf, vomit, upchuck, sick) crawling out of it.  Real classy, Buddy.  Real classy.  Josephine, without missing a beat, looked at Buddy and said, “Buddy rolling.  Josephine rolling too!”  and quickly dropped to the ground.  One foot from the maggot (barf, vomit, upchuck, sick) infested gopher.  So, so gross.  And so I grabbed her, got the heck out of the pen, disposed of the nasty vermin, and tried in vain to spray the dog off/keep him from licking my precious baby with his maggot (barf, vomit, upchuck, sick) mouth.  Gross.  Needless to say, we watered some tomato plants and hit the road (not before an asshole goat head butted my child, but that is a story for another day).   Back to the day at hand.  Yesterday, without Josephine, and keenly aware of rotting rodents, I proceeded to spend over two hours weeding the dog pen.  I lugged so many weeds out of that pen in a large trashcan, it was amazing.  Two trips to the trash trailer in I realized that a half trashcan of weeds may be heavy, but a full can is damn near unmovable.  I had to fight the urge to give in and just “come back to it later” (because I have so much time) pretty much the entire time.  But with some positive self talk (you can do this Emily!) I got it done.

full and heavy

A lesson in unmovable objects. I had to empty half of this just to get it to move!

In the end, my dog pen is looking beautiful, the asshole goats are still trapped in the pen (or so they want me to believe), and I learned a valuable lesson about letting a child play in a neglected dog pen (wow, that sounds bad.  You think I’d have had more sense than that in the beginning).  And so it begins.  Today my body is sore, but my dog is sleeping in a weed free pen.  Sounds like a good trade off to me!

Buddy's domain before

And after...Weed free for you and me!