Saturday, January 29, 2022

Tiptoe Through the Daffodils With Me

Inside and outside, we have a lot going on. William put himself in charge of clearing out our "pool" shed. We are taking out the dilapidated, old pool, and the shed that has housed chemicals, cleaners, sports equipment, beach and camping stuff, is going to be dismantled and moved (somehow) around to the area where the goats and hens live. Then the pool shed will be reassembled and renamed "feed shed" or "barn." This is all in preparation for the ADU... accessory dwelling unit, aka granny flat, aka detatched home addition. There. I've said it. We are building an ADU, where the pool was (is, but not for much longer.) It will be a two room house. It will be Max's chance to have a bedroom, at last. And then we have about a half dozen other ideas about renting space, or maker space, or gallery space, or guest space. Guest space. That has such lovely conotations. I will be so relieved and thankful to be out of pandemic days, and hosting family and friends, all of us bumping into each other in the kitchen, hugging, laughing into the wee hours, and lingering over cups of tea. Alex and Bambi have taken the initiative to remove our poor mimosa tree which is dormant, now, but also plagued with a fatal beetle infestation. They've been dismantling pool equipment, and sprucing up the side yard around their end of the Bird House. Maria's job is to carry on being a student, an artist, and robotics team member. Max is nearing completion of his consulting contract, and they've invited him to go ahead and "work overtime." Geoff is already there, working overtime, and all the time, and still making time to figure out the many steps and layers of preparing for an ADU to be built over a filled in pool. We passed soils testing, and Septic Bob probably has all the tests, documents, seals, and approvals, so maybe we will be getting septic pits dug, soon. The order of operations on all of this is epic... we should have one of those detective boards, full of pins and notes, and red string linking one event to the next, but all crisscrossed and web-like!
Did I leave anything out? Well. Yes. I've only touched the tip of this iceberg. The upstairs bathrooms are getting repaired. We are replacing a front window, and that requires equipment rental. And... well, I would say this was complicated, but then you see the look of sheer glee on Geoff, and Mike's faces, and you know this was probably a bonus, more than a complication. Even our neighbor's plans are involved. The house next door sold this week, and because we have an easement road between us, with access to our backyard that we don't have a legal right to... well, we are eager to meet the neighbors, and have them like us enough to share the access while they construct their new home (They've already begun demolition on the old place. And I say "old place" with tender regard, because we love that old, sentimental, dear place.) The ladder to the attic is installed. And yesterday, Mike added a row of lights. Geoff gets that same look of sheer glee whenever he goes up there. I think he has a better imagination about this space (and its potential) than I do, though I agree, the lights help a lot! It used to be dark, dangerous, and scary. Now it's only scary.

The Old Place is all sweet memories of good friends, and a lot of wishful thinking.

I wasn't going to blog today. And I was especially not going to blog about anything sad, or heavy, or whiney sounding. God, I hope I don't sound whiney. It makes me feel self-conscious, embarrassed, to be seen as negative thinking, or complaining. If I have complained, or detailed too many woes, I... I won't apologize. Shame isn't going to help me, or anyone. I have come to the realization that a lot of us are struggling, or burdened, worried, sad, lonely, anxious, angry, frustrated... name it! There has been a considerable uptick in sickness, trauma, sharp turns, upheaval, grief, and distress. Sometimes even good news has come as a shock! This week, I have been a patient, concerned ear for many people, and my heart is heavy for them, for friends, for family, for people I hardly know, but that have opened their hearts to me. Maybe we can't cure each other, or solve everyone's problems, but I won't shame anyone, and I hope to include myself in this, for being human in extraordinary times. Don't you wish we could have some long spells of ordinary, normal times? So, like I said, I didn't want to blog, but I needed to distract myself from things, and I would dearly love to give anyone else in need of something "different," a diversion, maybe an amusement. I can go over more details and faux drama about our home improvement adventure, or I can share more flowers, cats, and talks about tea, birds, flannel sheets, floor tiles, paint chips. Anyway, if you need to talk, to release some pressure, I hope you know someone that will listen, then say something gentle, that you find support, empathy, a moment of relief, clarity, light.
I was out, helping Geoff with an errand, and came upon this garden. The fragrance! Do you know daffodils? Or are these narcissus? I wonder, if I Google these, will I learn that they are related, Narcissus and Daffodils? I don't know. What I do know is that they made me pause, and wonder, and feel awe for the beauty in the world, for the fragrance of a cheery little blossom, and it's power to bring me back to gardens of my childhood. Even in late January, I felt the promise of Spring, of hope, and resillience. Virtually, but with as much love and caring as if we were in the same garden, I offer you a handful of these flowers, with gentleness, and caring for you.


Nicole MacPherson said...

Wow, that is so exciting, all your home improvement. And the ADU! What a cool thing to have. I'm so excited and happy for you, and I hope it all goes smoothly. Or, as smoothly as these things go (there are ALWAYS bumps, aren't there? I speak as a person who is going through this on our retirement property right now. Arrrrgggghhhhh.)

Regarding complaining. If you can't complain on your own blog, when can you? We have to let these things out sometime. I promise you don't sound whiney or complain-y. But it's allowed! No shame, as you say. That makes it worse. Sometimes a person just needs to vent.

Little Dorrit does... said...

Such lovely, frilly, dainty narcissi! [I had to Google the narcissus/daffodil question (like the Elephant's Child I am full of 'satiable curtiosity'), and it seems narcissus is the Latin name for daffodils, so either name is correct]...but these are so fancy I think they deserve to be given their fancier Latin name. Thank you for the gentle, caring handful!

Ruth said...

Everybody looks pretty happy! Lots going on--creative chaos, right?

Natalie, the Chickenblogger said...

Hello, Ruth! There are some pretty happy faces here! Thankfully, we are far from running out of reasons to smile, feel silly, have fun! And there is plenty of creative chaos, too... so right! I had all three cats for chaotic company while I packed up our bathroom this morning. We are very close to demo time!

Natalie, the Chickenblogger said...

Nicole, you know it! There will always be some bumps and "Arrrrgggghhhhh" when it comes to remodeling, repairing, and construction... but it's exciting, and worthwhile (eventually!) I'm excited for you... retirement property! That's really cool. I think we are aiming to retire here, and with that in mind, I just ordered two bath bars for our future, retired, old selves!
Thank you for helping me feel comfortable, not alone in needing to vent! (I made a bargain with myself, when I felt over-exposed after posting... I will remove the post, unless someone comments and I get the sense that I am not being ridiculous. You saved me.)

Natalie, the Chickenblogger said...

Cheers for your satiable curiosity, Amelia. I am the beneficiary of your pursuit, and what fun to learn that my hunch was correct. I think I will call the large blooms, the ones that look like frilled teacups on golden saucers, "daffodils," because they are daffy-whimsical darlings. The small ones, the paper whites, the frilled and daintier beauties are "narcissus," I agree. Something about them being related is a genuine delight. I can't wait for ours to bloom.

Janece said...

Three cheers for the ADU!!! I know it's a lot between here and there - but squee!!!!!!

Love your photos, as always.

Natalie, the Chickenblogger said...

Thank you, Janece... we are at a point in the journey when I forget to be "squee!!!!" So many balls in the air!
It's a lot, but you are right about it being cheer worthy, and we'll get there.