Saturday, March 24, 2018

It's Official

Yep.  It happened.  I'm officially going senile.  All this working the night shift has caught up with me and suddenly Saturday has transformed into Sunday in my head. 

It's a shame, really.  I'm not that old, yet.  Although, I am turning 55 next weekend.  Lucky for me, I have a husband to set me straight.  Guess he figures he owes me one since I've been reminding him of the day of the week on a semi-regular basis for over 28 years.

Aw, heck!  I'm only a day ahead of myself.  Mom always said I was an overachiever.

Wednesday, March 21, 2018

Working the Night Shift

I have a night off from work unexpectedly.  Things change in the production world and I have to change with them.  So I'm off tonight and working Saturday night instead.  I guess it's okay.  I slept roughly 10 hours straight so I must have needed it, right?


So I'm up and at 'em and wide awake tonight.  It is just after 4:30 am.  I have managed to get caught up on most of the things I have been wanting to get done for the last week. 
  • I up-potted my garden seedlings.
  • I did some research on a couple of new things I want to add to my bath & body line-up.
  • I made two more batches of soap.
Joyful Squid up top and Extra Stout below.
So far I've made a fresh batch of Ahimsa, Kismet, Swedeberry, Sowing the Wild, Lumberjack, Joyful Squid, Extra Stout, and a new offering--Grungy Gardener.  Grungy Gardener is an old/new soap flavor with added ground cardamom for a little bit of scrub power.  It works great to get the grime off your hands after a hard day's work in the garden.

Grungy Gardener.  Smells wonderful and gets your hands clean.

On top of everything else, it's officially spring! At least according to the calendar, anyway.  We got a dusting of snow for our first day of spring here in the Heartland.  It's okay though.  Just knowing that sunshine and warm temps are around the corner makes me pretty happy. this is an old picture.  The daffodils are not quite ready yet.

With the coming sunshine and warm temps comes a barrage of extra work.  Along with the soap gearing up there's the garden gearing up.

Pepper and eggplant seedlings.
Tomato seedlings.

We're moving to new digs at the end of the summer so there's that to work on.  It's a short move down the road to the next town over...just us adding to the Picofarm empire.  Along with that move comes more room for soaping and gardening and seed starting and what-have-you.  So we have plenty to do to keep us out of trouble so-to-speak.

Sheesh.  I'd better go put the camera away so Lucky will come in from the kennel.  I swear that dog is the most suspicious creature I've ever known!  He doesn't like his picture taken so he hides whenever I get the camera out and won't come back in until he's sure it's gone.  Nutty dog!  I can't even entice him back in with ham!
This is the last picture I took of Lucky that isn't blurry because he's running away. It was taken at least 5 years ago.  He is a Catahoula Cur and true to type is very suspicious of EVERYTHING.  Two seconds after I snapped this picture, he was gone.  He looks angry, doesn't he?

This is Dotti-Dog about 3 seconds after Lucky bailed for the kennel.  This dog is an English Pointer and wants to be a pony when she grows up.  She's actually posing here.  Not the slightest bit shy.

Tuesday, February 27, 2018

The Only True Constant

When I was in college, I took a conceptual physics class.  It was required.  I did not do so voluntarily although I was relieved to learn that there was not a lot of math involved.  I do love science.  Physics is just a bit of a reach for me.  Many days and nights were spent sitting in a coffee shop with my husband trying to bend our brains around the latest thought experiment.  But, I remember the one thing that my professor jammed into my resistant mind:

There are these things that are considered mathematical constants.   We talked about the speed of light ad nauseum.  However, the only real constant in the universe is change.  The irony of that resonated with me then.  It still does today.

Look at those carrots!
I've changed jobs again.  This may come as no surprise to most.  In the beginning, the work at the sand mine was interesting and challenging. After a few months, it became unfulfilling, repetitive, and depressing.  The people there were, and presumably still are, unhappy and unmotivated and singularly unkind to one another.  It isn't the place for me.  I gave it eight months.  The final straw came when I nearly suffered frostbite one very cold December day working in the load out bay.  Think about that for a minute:  I nearly got frostbite for fracking sand.  

Enough is enough.

Sunrise at the sand mine...might have been sunset.  I can't remember now...
Now I've taken a job at a meat processing facility for a rather large company.  We make ready-to-eat foods.  My job is in Food Safety and Quality Assurance.  I monitor for environmental issues.  I perform equipment inspections.  I do GMP audits.  It is my job to monitor the food we produce and help to ensure it is safe from contaminants. There are those who would argue that the 'food' we make is not something that people ought to eat on a regular basis.  I will agree without hesitation that hot dogs and frozen pizza are not exactly prime cuisine.  But, the fact remains that people feed this stuff to their kids.  They should at least be able to do so without worrying that it might infect them with something awful. 

Look at that dinker!

Fundamentally, my work is satisfying in that I feel I am performing a function that society as a whole needs.  Ensuring the safety of the food web is an important component of feeding the general population any way you look at it.  In a perfect world, everyone would eat wholesome food that is locally grown and very fresh...they would know the face and the name of the person who grew it.  In the real world, people eat what they like and can afford.  For many it is hot dogs and frozen pizza.

The work that I do for money has strengthened my resolve to continue the other work that I do: raising lean rabbit meat, growing organic vegetables, and producing handmade bath items for the whole family.  I am stepping back into the role of entrepreneur and stocking up on fresh batches of soap.

One of my seasonal soaps called Mother's Day.  It has a floral bouquet fragrance.
All of this has lead me more or less full circle back to where I know I need to be.  The constant of change has lead me to learn that the more things change, the more they stay the same.

I don't know who made this meme.  But, I love it.
It all comes down to balance.  Balance is the thing I've been searching and striving to find for years.  Maybe some day, I'll get it right.  Until then, I'll be gardening.