Sunday, May 2, 2010

busy "mindless" weekend

So my weekend didn't go as I had thought it was going to.  The meeting on Friday went okay but it left me drained and mentally exhausted.  So there was no way I was in the right frame of mind to hang out with teens for 12 hours and not get any sleep.  For the 1st time in a LONG time, I bailed on a youth activity ... I felt somewhat bad but I was happy overall with my decision.

Saturday morning, early (well early for me - 9:00 am) my mom and brother came to my house.  We did a TON of landscaping!  To both the front and back of my house.  We didn't stop until 4:00 PM with probably an hour and half break with a trip to Lowe's and lunch.  Then my mom and I were at it probably another hour this afternoon. I'm still not completely finished as Lowe's ran out of the brown mulch we had bought.  So there's another shipment coming in Wed or Thursday so I probably have another hour or so of mulching.

I was so exhausted last night!  It had been a long, hot, sweaty day.  I was covered in dirt and mosquito bites, the dog was filthy and my muscles started aching pretty quickly.

However, at the end of the day, we had a ton to show for our work!  It was exhausting but rewarding.  Thankfully we were able to finish today once the clouds rolled in and before the rain started.

And the best part of all of it ... I didn't have time to even think about work :)

While I was physically exhausted last night, that was fairly easily remedied with a few advil and a good night's sleep.  The mental exhaustion from work and life and everything else, doesn't go away quite so easily

Thursday, April 29, 2010

tomorrow should be 'interesting'

I know I haven't posted anything in over a week, and it's because nothing really all that noteworthy or spectacular has happened.  I have been journalling for over a week now and I guess since I'm writing things down in there, I don't feel anything is worthy of being written about twice

I do have some upcoming events that have the potential to be more than a little interesting ... there are 2 big meetings at my job tomorrow, both pretty big deals ... one has been about 5 years in the making.  It's way overdue and I'm surprisingly optimistic that things might actually change for the better, which can only make me enjoy my job much more!  However, the meeting has been planned for over a week, so it's kind of been a black cloud, looming on the horizon, all week. It's at 1:00 PM and I'm not sure exactly how long it's going to take ... but I'm not sure I will be in the best of moods when it's all over with.

Which isn't really great, because we are having an all-nighter with both Jr and Sr High from 8pm on Fri to 8am on Sat ... and the key to an all-nighter, is NO SLEEP!  I'm imagining what I'm really going to be in the mood for tomorrow after work, is my sweatpants, the couch and an adult beverage ... instead I'm going to have to put on a happy, energetic face, drop the dog at my mom's and go spend 12 hrs being fun, energetic and on the lookout for students groping each other in dark corners ...

I'm also a little scared because I have been trying very hard to retire "Nazi Rachael" when it comes to youth and youth events.  I witnessed some others being their own "nazi" versions early this year and I didn't like how it made me feel to be on the receiving end of some of that ... so I started re-evaluating my own reactions and behaviors.  So now I get to test my resolve ... after an intense day at work, and the prospect of no sleep and no adult beverages, of being nice, understanding, patient and not yelling .... oh boy

(As an aside, this wind we've been having is insane!  It even seems to be affecting my dog and his BFF Buddy ... both of them were a little insane today when they were playing ... they would all of sudden stop, seem to notice the wind and all the things blowing, become a little mesmerized, and then resume their running ... I also have a large dead branch hanging precariously, balanced on another branch and one of my cable/power lines ... so depending on how much the wind picks up through the night, I could wake up to no power tomorrow)

Friday, April 23, 2010

good neighbors

I've never been a very "neighborly" person.  Not that I'm unfriendly or rude, but I have grown up in the Northeast and have become used to people being suspicious when you are "too friendly".  So I always wave, say hello and smile, but I haven't been all that social with my neighbors.

Until I got my dog...

For the past year or so, I've been outside more, walking the dog, playing with him, etc.  I've talked with almost all the people on my street (there's only 8 house on the street) and have even learned their names.  I'm definitely enjoying getting to know one couple that lives across from me.  They have a little boy in kindergarten and a pit bull mix named Buddy that is probably Riley's "best friend".  If Buddy is outside and Riley isn't, he pretty much barks and whines and worries until I let him go out to see his friend.  The best part about it, Buddy is one of the best dogs I've ever met.  He's obedient, friendly, stays in his yard (off leash, no fence), and is great with Riley (who's about 1/3 of his size).  Since Buddy is so well behaved, I can let Riley off his leash and they run and run and run some more.  Which I love to see!!

This afternoon, I was talking to my neighbor as our dogs played and she told me that Buddy was now protecting my house as well as his!  Yesterday, I had a construction crew at my house, removing an old fuel tank from my side yard. Well I guess when Buddy was outside in the morning, he noticed all these strangers in my yard, his hackles went up, he growled and actually ran over to my yard to "protect" it.  Now once the construction guys paid attention to him he relaxed and was friendly.  I do wonder what went through their minds when they saw this pit bull charging towards them!  But I think it's sweet that he was defending his friend's territory :)

It's pretty cool to get to know my neighbors.  One more way I guess I'll be prepared when I don't live in the northeast anymore :)

Happy weekend friends!

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

How to start the week off right

This week has started out really well and I'm so happy about that!!  Sunday was a pretty typical day for me I guess, church in the morning and then youth group in the late afternoon.  The message was great at church, Pastor Rex's sermons on Heaven are thought provoking and reassuring at the same time.  And I figure if he expects that Buddy the Wonder Dog will be there, then I can plan on seeing Riley (or a new version of him) in eternity!

Youth Group was a really fun night.  We had a scavenger hunt and I ended up with 4 middle school girls in my car.  I have to say that ever since Breakout this year, I'm finding myself drawn to this age group more and more.  I'm not exactly sure what that's all about ... maybe I've had enough attitude from some of my high schoolers that the craziness and inability to sit still for more than 4 minutes that is a middle school girl is rather refreshing.  Anyway, the scavenger hunt was a lot of fun; and while my team didn't win, it was a refreshing change from the normal weekly service we do for them.

Monday at work went by in a flash.  I had a lot of work to do and 2 meetings that took up more time that expected; so the day flew by.  Last night, I determined to start out having some meaningful quiet time with me and God.  I started a new journal, was able to read about 6 chapters in Exodus (I'm a few weeks behind in my reading so I'm determined to double up until I'm caught up) and had a good 25-30 minutes of prayer time.  I think I freaked my dog out because he's definitely not used to me saying much of anything we are in bed!!  And I was praying out loud to keep my focus ... so he was serving to distract me part of the time.

Then I was in bed by 10:15 pm and I woke up this morning feeling refreshed and renewed and in a good mood. 

I'm very hopeful to build on this momentum and am actually looking forward to 9PM rolling around tonight.  If you know me, you know that I function best with a set schedule.  And while 9PM won't work every night of the week, I'm shooting for as much consistency as I can!

Excited to see what tonight's quiet time brings!

Friday, April 16, 2010

over a year?

Well I can't believe it's been over a year since I blogged last! I think with the increased usage of Twitter and Facebook, I guess I didn't have anything that important over 140 characters to blog about.

Tonight, while I'm enjoying a quiet Friday night at home ... laundry is done, TV watching caught up on, dog sleeping at my feet, I'm feeling a little introspective.

These last few weeks have been very interesting to me. I feel like I'm at this huge crossroads with my life. I have made some decisions, and while they are still about 2 years in the future and who knows what could change in those 2 years, I do feel a little more settled about where I see myself in the proverbial 5 years. It's certainly a different scenario that I would have guessed.

More than anything, I think I've come to realize that the last several years for me have been more about me biding my time than accomplishing much of anything. Biding my time, and I'm not even really sure what I've been waiting for.

I've decided that my job is not one that I see myself retiring from. I have made peace about many aspects of it and have been able to be honest with my boss and my staff about how I feel. It feels good to know that even if I have to stick it out for 2 more years until all my debt is paid off, after that, the possibilities seem endless. And that is fairly freeing.

Now it's just a matter of seeing if what I have planned for my future and what God has in store with me align. And this, my friends, is not an easy area for me. I am a very decisive person; I usually can see quickly through all options and make a clear, concise decision. But in this case, just because I may have made some decisions, doesn't necessarily mean I have the power to bring them all to fruition on my own. Thus, the waiting on God.

I know this seems really mysterious and it's sadly not ... It's not like I'm contemplating moving to Africa to work with orphans or Alaska to hang with Sarah Palin ... but there was a time when I thought I would live my entire life in NY. And now, I'm not so sure that's what I want ...

I'm not sure if this blog is worthy of the "wait" for over a year, and who knows if I still have any readers left... but it does feel good to get some things down on paper. And if I were smart, I'd start taking my buddy Jeremy's advice and I'd find myself journaling

Hopefully I won't take another year to post my next entry on here.