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Jean

... "Except the Will which says to them: 'Hold on!'"

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EDIT: Special thanks at the bottom!

 

On 2/16/2019 at 1:21 AM, Dark_Mother said:

Is there something you could do on your break(s) to recharge your battery?

 

Searching for it. The more I go, the more I feel like being truly alone and left to my own devices for a few days would do it because every encounter I have feels draining in some way but that may also be due to the kind of encounter these are and/or my way of handling it (I don't feel free around other people, even though I should and still keep acting the way I want to do without over-restraining myself. I think it has to do with me believing that whatever I do will be seen as wrong and/or inefficient (working with trial and errors) rather than inspiring, even though my life is going pretty well and there's bound to be something right in the way I handle things). We'll know more about it on Tuesday after counselling (though, of course, I don't expect much after just the one session, it's in the later interractions that the true gold pellets are).

 

 

On 2/16/2019 at 1:21 AM, Dark_Mother said:

If you're in charge of your time management, might you be able to plow through your hardest obstacles while your battery is full and coast through easier tasks as it tapers off?

 

I am in charge of it and it feels awesome. That's basically what I'm doing but, lately, it seems that there's just too many "hardest obstacles" to even leave time for the easier tasks. I've tried to talk to my boss about it but it was unconclusive so, next step is taking truly charge of my time management and letting critical things wait while I take care of the lesser ones (which still have to be done) when my batteries come close to empty. The worst of the battle should be behind me, though.

 

 

On 2/16/2019 at 1:21 AM, Dark_Mother said:

I don't understand when you say waking up destroyed.

 

Destroyed as "out of energy/hope for the day". My energy and hope levels are linked to the clarity with which I can see the way forward and me having a plan to go through the day/the week/the task at hand. Sometimes, like this Friday morning or today, it's just a big fog. I can't see a way and can't see what should go before what to carry me through. There's no meaning, no hope of it ever getting better, just tanking through after tanking through. Sometimes, I do see things clearly and I do have a plan. The day/week/task may be difficult but it feels lightly on my mind because it's all leading toward something and that something is what I want to build.

 

It could basically be reduced to "can I reach that arbitrary target that I consider to be what I want to do with my life or not ?". Basically, I'm feeling like what I live is life as it is for most people (we all go through our trials, it's hard on everybody) but when I act like "why do we still abide by it and there's a way out of it", I feel like all I get is misunderstanding. Are really other people living in a kind of hell, accepting it and not envisionning they could change it to something they'd like better if they tried ? Because living this hell and giving it value for itself seems pretty meaningless to me...

 

 

On 2/16/2019 at 1:21 AM, Dark_Mother said:

That work, even a career, is a means to an end, and the only person that needs to be pleased with my effort is myself. Same for you! ^_^ You're probably doing much better than you credit yourself! <3 

 

I am! I just have a hard time giving myself credit for good things and working on the assumption that they're "enough". Gotta keep working on that one.

 

Thanks for your input and the inspiration. :)

 

Edit: Aaaand, thanks again. Thinking about it has helped me to realise that I do already have a measure of what I'm trying to build and can work on it incrementally rather than all at once as I first thought I had to.

 

So:

 - keep the house clean;

 - enjoy my life;

 - develop my skills;

 - put money on the side;

 - gather people around;

 - turn the spiral downside up!

 

Looks like a plan and I like it. :)

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Weekly report:

 

Week 7

  • 1 hour in nature: checked. Spent Saturday afternoon chainsawing wood in the vineyard and small walks.
     
  • 2 workouts: checked (barely).
     
  • daily spendings tracking: done.
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10 hours ago, Jean said:

1 hour in nature: checked. Spent Saturday afternoon chainsawing wood in the vineyard and small walks.

 

I love hearing about you spending time at the vineyard! When can you drink wine from the grapes/plants you're tending to now?

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Answer a little later today or tomorrow (gotta make some checks on the winemaking calendar).

 

For now, today's food for thoughts: I caught myself thinking I was the hero of the story. Quick reminder to myself:

 

Everybody thinks he's the hero of the story. What makes us heroes or not is what we do, it's not a given due to outside forces gearing the universe. We can fall and we can rise. Don't rely on luck to go forward, you'll miss the whole story (you foolish fool).

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On 2/18/2019 at 10:05 AM, Tobbe said:

When can you drink wine from the grapes/plants you're tending to now?

 

I don't make my own wine and the winery to which I deliver my crop does a pretty poor job of turning it into drinkable beverage so, the real question would probably be: when can I make awesome stews out of the plants I'm tending to now?

 

The real answer is: I don't know, I'm not a specialist. Googling around, the time needed to produce wine seems to be pretty short so I guess I could be drinking now the result of last year's crop. They're having an "open cellars" event by the end of May every year so I'd guess the wine must be ready at least a month before that.

 

I'll have to make a serie of posts with pictures about tending to the vineyard. Thanks for making me think of it.

 

As for where I'm going with this small estate, I'll not go crazy this year and just see if I can properly follow a calendar (I've been late for several important steps the last two years). Next year, I'll start replacing some vines with a different kind, very appreciated in this area. Then, it'll be time to either search for better deals on my crop or trying some proper vinification myself. I'll be sure to drive my friends into it if I ever get there (though I'd have to drag them in this year already if I want to fulfill my pack gathering goal so, food for thoughts as to how I'll do it).

 

All in all, it's a nice experience. I'd advise starting with a garden, since it'd bring quicker rewards (nothing like homegrown tomatoes or strawberries, I tell you), then anywhere from trees (homegrown plums are a premium and you get so many of them you can always share with friends and make some marmalade). Pears, cherries, peaches, apricots and so on are also very good (though you have to follow the proper treatments if you're hoping to get any crop with the last two).

 

Owning a piece of land is quite a nice feeling and you don't have to be rich to buy some un-real estate, around here anyway (protip: it's called "real" estate because it's so down to earth in comparison to what dreams you can achieve with arable land that you're stuck in reality when you own it).

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32 minutes ago, Jean said:

when can I make awesome stews out of the plants I'm tending to now?

 

Huh? Stews?

 

32 minutes ago, Jean said:

I'll have to make a serie of posts with pictures about tending to the vineyard. Thanks for making me think of it.

 

That would be really interesting. Please make this happen :) 

 

33 minutes ago, Jean said:

nothing like homegrown tomatoes or strawberries, I tell you

 

Yes, my wife usually grows some tomatoes during summer. And we have/had some strawberry plants too, but those are much more difficult. Our hens/chickens, or other wild animals usually eats the strawberries before they're ripe enough for me to want to eat. And when/if there ever is one that gets to ripen to its full potential my kids usually finds it first and eats it! :D

 

35 minutes ago, Jean said:

homegrown plums are a premium

 

We have a plum tree that gives us yellow plums. But not every year. First summer we lived here the tree was overflowing with plums. But then we had several years where we only got one or two, or none at all. Last summer was better. Not great, but we did get to eat a few each at least :) 

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1 minute ago, Tobbe said:

Huh? Stews?

 

Stews!

French-Ancient-Stew-3-cropped-3.jpg&sp=90f7be7009e7e4dcc0d12d556773ff74

 

They can be made with broth but are so much better when you pour a bunch of red wine in them and let it cook slowly for hours. :)

 

8 minutes ago, Tobbe said:

And we have/had some strawberry plants too, but those are much more difficult. Our hens/chickens, or other wild animals usually eats the strawberries before they're ripe enough for me to want to eat. And when/if there ever is one that gets to ripen to its full potential my kids usually finds it first and eats it! :D

 

Aaah, the strawberries conundrum: let them get ripe and you'll get none of them. Eat them early and think of how much better they'd be if they were ripe. I feel you.

 

Also... hens! How is the raising going? I've had accounts that it's pretty easy (you just make them a pen and feed them whatever) and others that it's pretty complicated (they can get ill, there can be infighting and foxes are pretty cunning when it comes to getting inside the pen). How many do you have?

 

 

 

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4 hours ago, Jean said:

They can be made with broth but are so much better when you pour a bunch of red wine in them and let it cook slowly for hours.

 

I'm fully with you on that one. One of my favorite dishes is bœuf bourguignon :)  So you mean that the wine you get out of your grapes isn't good enough to drink? It's only usable as flavoring for food? 

 

4 hours ago, Jean said:

Also... hens! How is the raising going? I've had accounts that it's pretty easy (you just make them a pen and feed them whatever) and others that it's pretty complicated (they can get ill, there can be infighting and foxes are pretty cunning when it comes to getting inside the pen). How many do you have?

 

I'm embarrassed to say that I don't know how many we have. It's my wife's hobby. Which also means I don't really know how much work it is. I know she feeds them like once every day. Give them water whenever it runs out (once a week maybe...) And she has to get the bird poo out, and put fresh straw in there. Also maybe once every week.  We did have a big problem with predator animals. Mostly larger rodents, but also with birds of prey... So now we have a fully enclosed coop where they spend the night. We let them out during the days. This has worked well this far. As far as anyone getting ill... Yes, that has happened. That's when it comes in real handy that my wife is a veterinarian ;)   

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4 hours ago, Tobbe said:

So you mean that the wine you get out of your grapes isn't good enough to drink? It's only usable as flavoring for food? 

 

Depends who you ask, I'd say. I know way better wines to serve to my friends while I still need some for cooking and I'm partially paid with wine bottles so I still get to go to the fairs and buy tasty beverages while still having a use for the wine I've got to take as payment. Win-win. :)

 

As for the hens, it sounds like it's not something to take lightly and that careful preparation is required before considering taking care of them. Thanks for the feedback. Also, yes, your wife profession is certainly a boon in this regard. :)

 

 

 

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Speaking of my wife - she just got home and told me we have 13 hens and 1 cock. And right now that's plenty to keep us self-sufficient with eggs, but it's not always. Some parts of the year they're not as productive, and then we have to buy eggs in the store. But now we get more than we can eat and have to give a lot away to friends and family

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Week 8

  • 1 hour in nature: Nope. Didn't do no vineyard and didn't walk enough to qualify.
     
  • 2 workouts: Nope, just the one.
     
  • daily spendings tracking: done.

 

Week 9

  • 1 hour in nature: checked. Vineyard.
     
  • 2 workouts: Nope. I can feel my strength going away due to lack of sleep, and healthy eating, and exercise. I'll have to start back slow next week (already started) and check my other parameters.
     
  • daily spendings tracking: done.

 

On a different note, I've had some kind of epiphany and, for the first time in forever, I feel like I know where I'm going and how I'm going to get there. It's going to be hard, though (I have to work on my work conditions to make it less hard... not sure it'll be negociable, though).

 

So, music for the week: Thomas Bergersen - Our destiny

 

Let's see if I can keep the line on the loosing fronts while counter-attacking where my strengths are. Time for resources allocation, then the fight.

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Some say love is expressed through stomach. I say colon ! Colons are the center of love in our bodies*. You didn't slip, you found the Truth! :D

 

* Unless it's semicolons. Semicolons are pretty cool too! ;-)

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On 3/6/2019 at 5:01 PM, Jean said:

Some say love is expressed through stomach. I say colon ! Colons are the center of love in our bodies*. You didn't slip, you found the Truth! :D

 

* Unless it's semicolons. Semicolons are pretty cool too! ;-)

Profound stuff there 

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Week 10

  • 1 hour in nature: :( I'm hiding behind the rain but the truth is yesterday was a nice day to take a walk or go do some vineyard stuff.
     
  • 2 workouts: Nope. Working on it (I have very low strength right now, my guess is on poor food and sleep quality and a bit of "don't wanna" mindset).
     
  • daily spendings tracking: done.

 

I'm adding another side to my Be Wild quest: as much as I can (meaning when it's not too rainy), sleep on the balcony. This should help me find back more natural sleeping habits (as in, without the lights on, without a computer by my side and better air quality). This also alows me to vent the house during the night so, double win.

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It is but it's part of the experience. I'm taking out my military sleeping bag so it should be fine. This thing has seen worse temperatures.

 

It's going to be a pretty rainy week so we'll see when I start.

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9 hours ago, Tobbe said:

How well covered is the balcony? Can you sleep there at all when it's raining? 

 

It's been a snowy day. This is the bottom balcony:

Bottom.thumb.jpg.2eeb1d7510d5536271af56e1b5a72ff0.jpg

 

This is the lower part of the upper balcony, protecting it:

CoverBottom.thumb.jpg.7560037c3a7a992b5bcd596afa14c593.jpg

 

This is the top balcony (on which I intend to sleep):

Top.thumb.jpg.76d1c8f69a8f8c9369bbf34586b53d07.jpg:

 

This is the roof:

Roof.thumb.jpg.3066163f9cda6aa9a09c4485c1cd5043.jpg

 

And this is the garden:

Garden.thumb.jpg.b4235ecce463583d3e39df165c5c1893.jpg

 

My understanding is that it's been designed in order to allow for the hay to dry. I'm willing to say "worth a try" (though it's still pretty chilly so this is not today).

 

 

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Wow! The views! Now I really want to come visit - that place is beautiful! Love Eyes 

 

The top balcony looks more protected since the roof seems to protrude more than the balcony itself. Shouldn't be too bad sleeping there, even if it's raining, as long as the wind isn't pushing the rain in too far. A sleeping pad/mattress on the floor there and a warm sleeping bag and you should be able to have a nice night :) 

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On 3/12/2019 at 12:16 AM, Tobbe said:

Wow! The views! Now I really want to come visit - that place is beautiful! Love Eyes 

 

Part of my new challenge is being able to welcome guests without prior notice. Feel free to put me to the test. ;) (EDIT: with some creativity, I can accomodate 4+1 baby, BTW, tough that requires prior notice.)

 

It's a both "keeping the house clean" and acceptance (I'm not perfect, neither is the state of my home, people should accept me for who I am and can deal with a small disorder) kind of challenge.

 

Speaking of it, I've come up with a grid of things to do within my day in order to keep me on track to where I want my life to go. I don't expect total success, it's just, well, to keep me on track.

 

image.png.fb130bb687f4f3e7890cbeda08a31309.png

 

Sleeping outside is part of it.

 

As for this week:

 

Week 11

  • 1 hour in nature: Vineyard
     
  • 2 workouts: Nope, still working on it.
     
  • daily spendings tracking: done.
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Ok, life got in the way, hard. Funny how things keep moving forward and in a good direction, but not quite in the way I'd planned for them to, and always switching from one goal to another.

The workouts are in the water, I don't know when I'll put them back up. I have no sleep schedule to speak of and my eating habits are only now taking a turn for the better (I need veggies, I didn't want to shop for them nor to cook, my body told me what for, I'm back to the pan fried chicken and veggies stapple. Easy to do yet delicious. I may switch to barbeque and salad when I get tired of it, or it may be stew, I'm still on the fence on it).

Daily spendings tracking had to go, it was getting me way too much on the hedge. I'll do just a monthly check instead and see what has been saved. Since I've had the opportunity to cash in on unplanned money lately, this is a luxury I can and should afford.

The hour in nature is what's keeping me on. More precisely, hiking. Spring is coming in strong and early around here and several trails that would normally be snowy are perfectly doable so I'm enjoying it. Another funny thing is how taking off days and volunteering them to build up the infrastructure for a festival to come seemed like such a bad idea on Thursday (I did it on Friday and Saturday) and yet had such a positive effect in the end. I'm still drained and my guess is my body has been sick for a few months now but things look like they're holding on.

It's nice having a plan and knowing what to do, even though deadlines have already been missed and keep piling up. Perspective has taught me that going down is necessary to getting things done so there's not much stress involved anymore.

All in all, I can feel clarity of Mind again. Feels nice, I credit the body activity for it.

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Thanks for the support. :)

 

I'm getting back to weekly updates, even when they're not amounting to much, like today.

 

We had some heavy snow yesterday but it stopped during the afternoon. My weekly hike was fairly short, still. I took the opportunity to review the vita trail in order to get there one of the coming weeks.

 

Cooking has ups and downs. I need real veggies, I'll see if I can find some.

 

I need to be more at peace with reality. Stress is eating me while there's no real deadline to get me down (as in: there are deadlines, I'm already behind, but there's nobody willing to enforce any consequence so they may as well be nothing but an illusion). Working the way I think it should be done, getting done what I feel needs to be done and not fretting about anything past my working hours is the way to go... Though I still have a long way to go to reach there.

 

Decluttering is slow but happening, though papers are everywhere.

 

Target for this week: get relaxed at work and at home. Cook few but cook good (I'm hitting the grocery stores tomorrow, aiming toward barbecue and salads).

Focus in my life: I want to be wilder.

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