Enjoying life's adventures in a secluded mountain cabin

Archive for May, 2011

Dirty Dishes

Few things in this life elicit such feelings of angst and physical pain for me like a kitchen counter covered with dirty dishes waiting for little ol me.  Now, don’t get me wrong.  We’re not nasty people who don’t clean up after meals and just throw all our dirty dishes up on the counter and leave them there until someone finally realizes there’s not a clean glass, plate, bowl, pot, pan, fork or spoon left in the house.  I know of people like that, but I’m definitely not one of ’em.  My germ-a-phobic tendencies won’t lend themselves to that kind of “laid back” lifestyle.

No, our kitchen counter covered in dirty dishes awaiting me is usually pretty organized, as far as dirty dishes go.  Everything has been rinsed off and stacked neatly with like items.  Mind you, some of those stacks can get rather tall.  You see, I usually only do dishes once a day, twice if Mountain Man cooks one of his absolutely life altering breakfasts.  And I prefer not to do them right after we eat supper.  I’d rather spend that time with the people who matter most to me.  Not Dawn dish soap, a scrubbing sponge and a drying towel.  And that, dear readers, leads to one of my biggest gripes in life.

I do not now, nor have I ever, had the luxury of a dishwasher.  The dishwasher in this house is yours truly.  Some women dream of fine jewelry, designer clothes and shoes, extravagant vacations to some far off exotic land, and expensive cars.  Not this mountain girl.  I dream of a machine that does all that washing, scrubbing, rinsing and drying for me.  What can I say?  I’m a simple girl, with simple wants.

Now some people will be baffled by the mere fact that I’ve never lived in a house with a dishwasher.  I can completely understand this bewilderment, but cannot fully explain the reasons behind it.  I guess, first and foremost, my mother never had one when I was growing up because she’s one of those people that doesn’t believe a machine can get her dishes as clean as she can.  She’s insane.  That’s the only plausible explanation for her thinking.

When I moved out on my own, neither my apartment nor my more recent house in town, came equipped with the little modern marvel that I just know would change my world for the absolute better.  Because they were both rentals, I wasn’t allowed to alter anything in them.  Installing a dishwasher was completely out of the question and I didn’t have the space for one of the freestanding models.  So, onward I trudged through hundreds, if not thousands, of loads of dishes, complaining every step of the way!

I’ve washed dishes the old fashioned way my entire life.  Don’t get me wrong, I’ve had some help along the way with this dreaded chore.  I’ve not had to go it alone every single day.  But still, this is a task that I loathe more and more with each passing sink full that I have to delve into and scrub through.

Now, just for the record, Mountain Man would have the best dishwasher on the market here tomorrow for me if there was room for it here in the cabin.  But, alas, there’s not.  Which, in a way, is a good thing.  I can’t believe I just typed that sentence!  A good thing?  I must not be fully awake just yet!  Not to mention, I made Mountain Man a deal when I moved into the cabin with him.  If he agreed to do the cooking, I’d do all of the clean-up afterward.  And as much as I despise this task, knowing that I get to indulge in his culinary masterpieces makes every minute spent elbow deep in that sink full of suds worth it!


Stupid Bugs

I’m convinced that there’s a conspiracy amongst the flying insects this year.  It’s almost as if they’ve went into hibernation over the long, frigid winter and came back out with an unnatural urge to aggravate every living soul that dares to set foot outside in their turf.

I know, I know, every year we go around muttering the same thing to ourselves and anyone else who’ll listen.  “The bugs sure are bad this year.”  Well this year, the bugs really are bad!  It’s almost as if a plague has been unleashed upon us and try as I might, nothing can stop these annoying little creatures from driving me to the point of madness, or worse, back inside the house.

They’ve become immune to most every line of defense we’ve tried against them.  No amount of insect repellent, citronella oil, flaming lanterns, profanities shouted, or prayers sent up have seemed to thwart their unending attack on me and my family.  Summer’s not even started and already, those stupid little winged spawns of Satan are working hard to keep us all penned up inside.

I, being the ever forgetful creature that I am, left my sunglasses, (one of the eyes only lines of defense against the temporary blindness that comes when one the little devils flies right into your cornea,) in the house yesterday afternoon and I’ve never been more miserable in my life.  Oh, wait a minute, there was that time I was so sick I couldn’t get out of bed for two days, and then there was the time I had whiplash from a car wreck and couldn’t move my head from side to side, oh and I have had two children.  Ok, so maybe I have been more miserable in my life a few times, but trust me, it ranked right up there.

The little winged demons are so vexing.  They kept flying right into my eyes!  So, naturally, I kept squinting my eyes until they were just barely open enough for me to see, but it really wasn’t helping.  I eventually had the entire upper portion of my face contorted in what could only be described as something totally unnatural, to try to keep the little flying nuisances from permanently blinding me.  This went on for only a few minutes, but for my poor face and forehead, it seemed like it lasted for days.   My forehead started hurting and I ended up giving myself a headache.

Needless to say, this didn’t deter the stupid bugs one bit.  They had no pity for me.  They felt no remorse for making me so miserable.  They couldn’t care less about the permanent wrinkles set deep into my face from the unnatural facial contortions I was trying, in vain I might add, to keep them from blinding me.  Once I waved the white flag of defeat and headed inside the sanctuary of the mostly bug free house, I’m pretty sure that they went on to aggravate some other poor creature.  My misery was no longer high on their list of things to do.  They had won.

But I won’t go down without a fight!  I’ll keep coming back and eventually I’ll win the battle with the winged spawns!  Will these horrendous flying menaces get the best of me and keep me prisoner in the cabin all summer?  No.  For I will come out the victor.  I will figure out a way to end their evil reign and I will enjoy being outside once again!

Mountain Man

I have found, what I believe to be, my perfect match in life with this wonderfully glorious specimen of the male species.  My Mountain Man.  In fact, I don’t know how we ever existed apart from one another.  Ok, perhaps that’s taking it a bit too far.  I mean, after all, we did in fact exist without each other.  We existed well enough to live 30+ years on this earth and have families and kids and other lives all together before meeting one another.  But, I know for me, I was only existing.  I wasn’t thriving.  I wasn’t living.  I wasn’t enjoying life like I do now that it’s whole and complete.  I’m sure that a lot of people think the same thing about their beloved, but honestly, anyone would be hard pressed to find a more perfectly matched pair.

We have so much in common; so many of the same likes and dislikes, so many of the same values in life, so many of the same beliefs, so many of the same thoughts spill over and we end up finishing each other’s sentences quite often.  We have nearly the same conversations with the kids at separate times, and we speak almost the same exact words, verbatim, and then we get the look that says ‘oh my gosh, he/she just said the exact same thing!’  It’s uncanny and a little scary at times.

We also have our differences, too.  And they vary in much the same way that our commonalities do.  We are not, nor will we ever be, the exact same person embodied by two people.  Our differences make us just as strong as our similarities.  They complement one another.  They nurture our individuality and keep us in our respective roles as man and woman in a relationship.

So, to go along with my Mountain Girl name in this little ol blog of mine, he has been dubbed my Mountain Man.  I think it’s very fitting.  He may have hailed from the awe-inspiring flat lands of the Mid West, but he’s a Mountain Man, through and through.  And he’s the prefect match for this Mountain Girl.  And I couldn’t be happier!  🙂

Longer Days

It just occurred to me yesterday that summer is in full swing here on the mountain.  It may not officially be summer according to the calendar, but Mother Nature has decided to bring on the long, hot days a little early this year.

My revelation had nothing to do with the unusually warm days we’ve been having or the late afternoon thunderstorms.  No, it was the fact that it was still light enough to see outside at almost 9pm.  It totally threw me off all evening long.  And not in a bad way, either.  It’s nice to think it’s getting really late, only to find out that you’ve still got a few hours left to play outside and relax in a lawn chair, hovered around the tiki torches and ThermaCell’s.  Have I mentioned that the bugs up here are absolutely, downright vicious?  I swear I think some of ’em are carrying switchblades!

But, bugs or no bugs, being able to enjoy being outside is such a joy for me.  Now, don’t get me wrong.  This ‘ol gal absotively, posilutely does not like heat!  (Unless there’s a pool, river, lake, ocean or any other form of water to cool off in.)  I cannot stand to be stuck outside when it’s 130 degrees and I feel like my skin is melting off my bones.  I turn into a raging mad lunatic with a fuse about as long as an eyelash hair.  Well, that might be stretching it, just a little.  But, really, I don’t like to be hot.  I’d rather be bundled up in three layers of clothes, under a blanket, sitting by a fire and snuggling up with the dog trying to stay warm in the middle of a snowstorm, than to be sweating for no other reason than it’s hot outside!  That, to me, is absolute misery!

But, early in the morning, and late in the afternoon, when the day is just beginning or just ending, those are my two favorite times to be out here, in the woods, absorbing all of nature’s beauty.  The colors of the Western NC mountains and the woods surrounding me, the Carolina blue skies, the sounds of the birds singing, the smells of the earth and the fresh cut grass, the feel of the early morning fog or the late evening dew kissing my skin, ahhhh, bliss.  It just doesn’t get any better!

I’m still here…

For any of you that might have been wondering, I’m still here.  I wasn’t taken on Saturday and my life didn’t change in any way, other than the fact that it’s gotten a little busier this week with two kids playing sports and I’ve had the most awful case of writer’s block known to man!  These two realities and the fact that my computer has been driving me nuts acting funny have been the cause for my temporary hiatus in blogging.

My poor archaic dinosaur of a laptop.  Bless its little heart.  It’s 4 years old and it can be cantankerous and down right mean from time to time.  I’ve seriously contemplated throwing it off the deck a few times here in the last little bit.  But after a cup of coffee, a few deep breaths this morning, and a little tweaking and a few upgrades, he seems to be acting a little nicer.  I’m hoping that our relationship will improve.

Thanks again for being patient with me.  🙂

The Last Day?

Hopefully this won’t offend anyone.  These are just my thoughts regarding the hot topic of the day.

As many of you have surely already heard, tomorrow is supposed to be the beginning of the end.  May 21, 2011: The Rapture, the second coming of Christ, the last day here on earth for some people, and the end of life as we know it for others.  So much hype and publicity goes into these little predictions that crop up ever so often.  So much speculation, so much guess-work, so many differing opinions as to who’s right and who’s wrong, so many “what if’s”.

It’s hard not to be bombarded with all of these threats of imminent doom.  Even up here in this secluded cabin, one simply cannot escape stories like this.  When I was little, I can remember really only hearing about tales of such predictions because they were plastered all over the front covers of the tabloids in line at the grocery store, (right next to pictures of the elephant man, the bearded lady, and the worlds largest baby).  Now, stories like this are everywhere!  The newspapers, television, radio and the internet spread information with lightning fast speed.

Now, don’t get me wrong, as a woman of faith, I fully believe that there will come a day when God’s plans will come to fruition.  (And yes, I understand there are many people who disagree with me.  And that’s ok.  You have your beliefs and I have mine.  And it’s ok to differ.)  BUT- I don’t believe that any of us know the exact date that it’s going to happen.  I don’t think any of us are supposed to know.  Wouldn’t that be kinda like cheating anyway?  I mean, people could do anything they wanted and as long as they made nice with God before that specific day and time, all would be forgiven and everything would be just groovy.  I’m pretty sure that’s why we haven’t been given an expiration date for this thing we call life.  That and the fact that we’d all probably be insane worrying about the impending date of our demise.

Surely we have evolved enough as human beings to come to our beliefs, whatever they may be, based on a combination of education, trust, faith, and a little common sense.  Whether you believe in God, some other spiritual deity, or absolutely nothing at all, I hope you don’t put much stock into all these predictions about the last days.  We should always be conscious and aware and prepared, but we shouldn’t be living in fear based on a prediction.

Live life to the fullest and with no regrets.

Now, I’m gonna go eat a piece of chocolate, bask in all the beauty that surrounds me, make plans for my future, love my family, enjoy my evening, and sleep soundly tonight.  No worries…

Line dried clothes…

Today is the first day that the sun has broken thru the dreary, rainy clouds in almost a week.  I was so excited this morning when I saw the first remnants of light bursting over the mountain top, streaming thru the windows, and washing over every surface that surrounded me.  Absolutely giddy!  What can I say?  It doesn’t take much to excite me.

So anyway, it occured to me, that I’d be able to utilize our clothesline today.  And that excited me.  Absolutely giddy!  I know, I know… there’s something terribly wrong with me.

But, all possible mental illness aside, I truly enjoy hanging the wash out on the clothes line to dry.   I like the feel of the crisp morning air when I first set out with my task.  I like the smell of the clean clothes as I’m hanging each of them on the line.  I like the sight of the clothes hanging all neatly in a row.  I like taking them all down at the end of the day and smelling that “line dried smell” mingling with the laundry detergent.  I like the sense of accomplishment I get when everything’s folded and put away neatly.

Yeah, it takes longer to actually get done with the laundry, but somehow, it just feels right.  🙂

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