My internal clock is set for some time back in June, but according to the calendar it’s already effing September. That’s how we’re going to refer to it for the whole month. Effing September. Which is going to be short lived because effing September is effing half over already. It’s almost effing October.
I just need to take a minute to breathe into a paper bag, if you don’t mind.
You know, September itself isn’t such a bad month. I love Fall. I love it when the entire world starts to smell like apples and woodsmoke. I love the idea of curling up with a book and hot cider at the end of the day. I love Christmas (and not just because sometimes I drink a bottle of wine and sing for you guys.) It’s just the getting from here– with a pretty hefty list of things I need to do before it snows–to there seems a little… intimidating.
If I’m being honest, I feel a little melancholy about this year winding down because my progress on house projects recently feels, well, disappointing. And while I don’t think there’s any good point to getting all woe-is-me on you about this, it’s also probably healthy to acknowledge my feelings and put them out there… I’ve noticed on other blogs (and am sure I’m guilty of it myself) a tendency to get preemptively defensive about things. The fact that I don’t feel good about how much I’ve gotten done probably subconsciously affects the way I tell stories. I’m afraid at any minute I might just start spouting off a list of THINGS I’VE DONE THIS YEAR, YOU GUYS just to make myself feel better about, well, all the things I haven’t done.
One of the ways I deal with ALL THE FEELS is to, well, first, just call it the eff out. There’s no point in me writing at all if I’m not going to tell an authentic story, and it’s actually okay to be a little disappointed in yourself. It doesn’t mean I’m unhappy or ungrateful or stressed out… It just means I think I can do better. And then? Well, then I make lists.
Dwelling for too long on things I don’t feel good about doesn’t energize me, but you know what does (for weird, weird reasons that we don’t need to get into the psychology of?) Challenges.
So here’s the list of things I’m challenging myself to do before winter rolls in for real (which, knowing winter, could be anywhere from 3-8 weeks from now)…
1.) Barn Work – Yes, I spend more time working on the barn than the house, but more things live out there than in the house too. Here’s what needs to be done:
- Deep clean the chicken coop, donkey stall, and floor. Put down new bedding, organize for winter.
- Fix man-door
- Fix donkey door
- Close up windows
2.) Prep for animals- Running out of hay in the middle of a snowstorm when my truck won’t start is a bitch, and it’s not happening to me again this year.
- Stock up on hay, straw, feed
- Get water heaters set up (Nov)
Get guineas Move new guinea coop out to pasture(done, but needs a pen)
3.) Run electric to barn (call electrician)
4.) Have wood-stove hooked up in garage
- Build table for drill press/ router table
- Fix wall
Call to have hooked up(did that this morning, actually)
5.) Refinish dining room floor finally (probably just call someone to do this)
6.) Finish some projects
- Clean up dead tree branches
- Fix or store truck cap
- Paint back of barn
- Put cross braces on pergola
- Put gravel under pergola
- Finish propane fence
- Patch holes in soffits, cap chimney
7.) Work the land
- Mow the Back 4
- Plant fruit trees dammit, you’ve been talking about it for years
- Plant garlic, onions, anything else that needs to go in the ground
- Kill weeds in garden (clean up beds)
I’m hoping if I can make some decent progress on this list, then I can clear some headspace and focus my energy on taking on one of those bigger projects. Or, if this year is anything like last year, on shoveling snow.
Anyone else panicking about winter already or is it just me?
Also, for listening to me panic about winter, I give you this… donkeys spying on guineas.
Always there with the comic relief.