June on the Farm, with Navel Gazing

This is a random photo post. I was out today and enjoying seeing how beautiful things are here right now, even with all of our ridiculous cold, wet weather.

Roses Everywhere!!!!

Of course, I was also feeling a little troubled. I am basically a positive person, and I’m happy with my life, but that doesn’t mean everything is idyllic. I think I’m pretty good at making it LOOK sort of idyllic on the blog, but what you can’t see from my pictures is that there’s a noisy lumber mill across the street operating 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. There’s a woman on the corner who screams at her foster children all day when the weather is nice. And our neighbors on the other side don’t take care of their dog, and it constantly comes on to our property and chases our chickens; the police have even been involved, but this week it killed two of the feathered ladies. We’ve done everything we can, for over a year now, and nothing is changing. It’s incredibly frustrating.

Geriatric Feline, with Seedlings

But. I have this idea that you decide what your life is. There are forces in the world I have no power over. I can’t control who lives next door. I can’t change the weather. I can’t make the lumber mill go away. And there are days when I let these things, and a million other things, frustrate me and upset me. I walk around under a dark cloud, muttering to myself and obsessing over the things I can’t control. I imagine I’m not the only one who engages in this kind of behavior.

Beets, Onions, Peas Reach for the Sky

But I decided a few years ago that I’m not going to live there. I believe that the quality of my life is determined largely by my attitude and emphasis. I can live a life of rude neighbors, noisy industry, tight finances, marauding dogs. That’s one perspective of my life, and it’s a true one. But there’s also the hubster, who brings me tea in bed almost every morning, so we can visit before he goes to work. There’s an acre full of vegetables, herbs and flowers that never cease to feel like a miracle to me–that I could put those roots, those seeds in the soil, and add water, and see them grow. There’s time to write–something I’ve wanted all of my life, and finally have, and it’s every bit as delightful as I hoped it would be. There are neighbors Ted and Josie, who have a llama named Charlie and this awesome goat with a white patch on it’s forehead that makes it look like a cyclops from a distance. I can emphasize either sets of facts, and not be lying to myself; it’s the same life, no matter how I look at it, but one point of view is definitely more enjoyable than the other.

My Faithful Gardening Hat

I’m writing this post to remind myself. I’ve had a cranky week and done a lot of complaining, and I want to stop.  I have better things to do than feel sorry for myself. Like pull the weeds from between the peas, thin the carrots, plant some rosemary bushes, and work on my novels.

I think that my own key to personal happiness is sort of a combination of “accentuate the positive” and “stay too busy to mope”. Of course, I DO mope sometimes; but I think I do best if I allow myself a certain amount of time to wallow in it, then decide it’s time to find something better to do.

What about you? What do you do when you have a bad week where it all seems to go wrong? I’m a total voyeur when it comes to other people’s coping skills.


8 thoughts on “June on the Farm, with Navel Gazing

  1. Good on you Michelle! I happen to think you have aBSOLUTELY THE RIGHT ATTITUDE ABOUT DEALING WITH THE STUFF THAT GETS YOU DOWN. (oops – I accidentally hit caps lock, happens a lot these days while my hands are going as numb as my feet) See – there is an example of my thoughts about circumstances that life hands us. Most days I do meditating on having a healthy body and I keep on moving forward. The universe brings me tools to cope and hope to heal. On the many mornings I trudged out to catch the bus for the first leg of the hour long journey to school I worked at “changing the tapes” in my head from “Oh god! I just feel so tired (or sick to my stomach, or whatever was the yuck flavor of the day) to “You can do this. This is something you WANT, so go for it.” Just a couple of weeks ago I was holding the vision of a safe and reliable car and now we own a Volvo. Pretty safe and reliable! And just last week I realized a lifetime dream by graduating from PSU. Not to toot my own horn – but changing your mind really does change your life.

    1. Chris, I’m SO glad you guys got a car! Mostly for selfish reasons, because it means you can come see me. 😉

      I admire your tenacity, and I’m so proud of you for getting that degree! Yay you!!!!!

    1. Barbara, animals are awesome therapy. I think the only reason the cats aren’t eating those seedlings is that they have three catnip bushes and some chamomile to nom on. They seem to like those best. My Siamese did nibble the cilantro, but apparently it wasn’t to his liking.

  2. Michelle,

    That’s what I love about you. Your perspective is so refreshing and you always remind me to keep my chin up and look toward the light. Not that light. The one that warms us to the core and keeps our hopes alive.

    Your pictures are beautiful and inspiring. Like you, I spend time outside when I’m feeling down. I also write poetry. Not something I enjoy, but it does get those nastly blues onto paper and away from me. It helps.

    Hugs~ cat

    1. Cat, you are my favorite, most faithful cheerleader. I don’t always manage to respond to your comments, but I read them ALL and they always make me feel good! Thanks for being my internet buddy.

  3. Hello, I enjoy your blog on a regular basis, and want to tell you that this post was enlightening. I too believe that our lives are what we focus our energies on. Blessings to you. Beautiful gardens, lovely writing.

    1. Thanks Yarrow! I stopped by your blog, which I hadn’t seen before, it’s lovely! I love hearing from people who I don’t usually hear from. It reminds me that even the people who aren’t commenting are reading. 🙂

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