Friday, May 1, 2015

(7QT 8} - What I (Evidently) do When I'm Stressed

So, I didn't write all of my quick takes all at once. I've been writing them, kind of one at a time.

I've realized as I've been putting them in order that I've been really stressed out over like the last week and a half or two, about a few things I can't really do anything about in the immediate sense. I've apparently been really working hard to keep my mind off things while still managing to be lazy about housework.

I had so many things to talk about, I think I have like nine or ten quick takes, but I numbered 1 to 7, honest!

We had crazy weather in south Louisiana earlier this week. I used to think the tornado-producing super cells of the great plains were incredibly difficult to distinguish from other thunderstorm clouds - you know, just by looking at them out your window.

I was sorely mistaken.

Just for reference, I usually don't get scared in tropical storms - I like to sit by a window and watch. Nothing puts a sense of wonder at God's might in you like that kind of raw power. During a tropical storm, I feel safe inside my house. I was honestly and sincerely scared during this storm.

I have never seen the sky this darkened by storm clouds. Seriously: it was ten in the morning, and it looked like it was eight o'clock at night. I was contemplating which place in the bathroom would be safest if we actually had a tornado come through the neighborhood.

Fortunately, we only had power blinks, in our neighborhood, not power outages, and I don't think we actually had anything touch down in our area. There are still outages all over the city, though. Say some prayers for those still without power, please!

Daniel and I have been watching Daredevil on Netflix after Pitter Patter goes to bed - kind of a little mini-date. It's been a lot of fun to watch, but one negative thing I do have to say is that there is a lot of gratuitous violence. I would not consider watching it with children around.

I know a lot of people have finished it already, but we've been trying to stretch it out, so that we won't have to wait very long between this Marvel program on Netflix, and the next one.

--- e ---

You might remember a few weeks ago that I posted about working on our pictures - cataloging them and tagging them and all that stuff.

We took about 800 pictures on our honeymoon. Of those, I had about... 400 left to do, as of two weeks ago.

I had a round of insomnia one night and I cataloged all of the ones remaining. Granted these were easier pictures because I took lots of them in rapid succession (so renaming them with the date and time they were taken was really easy) and there weren't many people in them, so tagging them was also simple, because I could tag all the pictures from the "Lava viewing area" en masse, and not have to do a whole lot of extra tagging.

So yeah, on to the next year of pictures... which are now about half way done. (I didn't take nearly as many when we got home!)

On the whole, I'm a pretty disorganized person, and housework and household organization tends to fall by the wayside. My house, generally speaking, is almost never in any condition for company.

Knowing this about myself, I decided to try to put organization into my path well ahead of Mother's Day - which is an occasion for "everybody and their mom" to come over to my house for a potluck lunch.

Daniel usually smokes pork loin for the occasion. He's very good at it.

I decided to start actually trying to organize our household financial records for the last five years by putting everything into one master binder. I bought the binder like two months ago! (It's been gathering dust and getting lonely since then.)

This week on Tuesday, during Pitter Patter's nap, I decided to buckle down, find my heavy duty three-hole punch, and start going through the stacks I have on the islands by our kitchen table. I managed to clear them, get them organized by calendar year (most of them were '15 anyway) and get started on my backlog of stuff that was either shred or file that we've been keeping in our "junk" room.

I'm pretty proud of myself for the work, but I think I may have lacked some foresight. My 3" binder probably won't be big enough.

I've also been doing some leisure reading. I finished reading Eye of the World earlier this week. It's Robert Jordan's first book in the Wheel of Time series, which was published in 1990.

I enjoyed the plot well enough, and I love the amount of depth that there in the setting. He literally had thousands of years of fictional history worked out - and not just the events, but their cultural significance to races all over a continent.

He actually had the etymology of throw-away phrases (that most people would have read as a literary flourish) worked out, and sometimes explained in-text. Truly a Tolkienian verisimilitude. Such a level of intricacy and detail is something to aspire to. It was really lovely reading.

It's the first real leisure reading book I've finished in longer than I care to admit, and I've been working on reading it longer than I care to admit, too. I've started and set it aside due to "becoming busy" about five times and had to start over because I forgot where I was.

I've read about the last hundred pages in the last three or four days (which is a breakneck pace for me), and I'm totally going to read the next book. The story is good, but the setting is amazing.

The entire series is 15 books. Guess I'll have a long time to enjoy his work.

One thing I didn't really care for was that there was this nonsensical love interest in the book that comes completely out of left field. It was like 30 pages before the end, and a significant plot point turns around this love interest. Won't spoil it for you, just in case you see something about it that I missed and it really works for you, but... I didn't care for it.

I totally neglected my reading for Bible study this week to finish reading this instead. Shh! Don't tell on me!

I don't know if y'all caught Haley Stewart's post, Why Voldemort Hates Homeschooling, over at Carrots for Michaelmas, but it touched on something I never actually saw in the Harry Potter books. I highly recommend reading it. It's really nice food for thought about our educational system and why parental involvement in their children's education is critical to forming conscientious, capable young minds.

Do you keep a prayer journal?

I've been keeping one, kind of on-and-off, for... I guess a little over a year, now?

I've included a lot of quotations from various books, various priests, the occasional roving minister at Daniel's Church that says something interesting, church documents, and even the occasional insightful blog post, and sometimes a little written prayer, but it's often served as a glorified diary in places.

I came across a post on prayer journalling that I'd like to share:

Journal Prompts for Your Prayer Journal @ His UnEnding Love

I seem to find a lot of Prayer Journal prompts that are based on particular verses, and I know those are super-helpful for many people, particularly those for whom a prayer journal is part of how they study scripture, but those never seem to be as helpful to me.

I find that the prompts in this list speak to me more than prompts that are based around a particular verse because these allow me a lot of leeway to journal on whatever is on my heart at the moment.

I've been finding that I need a goodly bit of leeway on that score lately anyway. There's been a lot on my heart. Seriously, guys, pray for me! I think I might need it! (Just kidding. I know better. I always need it! ;-) )

So... last week I quoted the highest number of pageviews I'd ever gotten in a single day at 26, but Tomato's Vine has made a liar out of me!

She shared my post on secondary infertility, as part of her series of posts on National Infertility Awareness Week, and between that and 7QT last week, I got an incredible number of pageviews last Friday.

By my count, it was 37.

Google Analytics says it was a bit higher, but WOW!

Now, I'm pretty sure that this is, by no measurement, "going viral", but when your average weekly views is less than 50, getting this many in a single day is "incredible."

(go ahead, seasoned bloggers, say it, "AWWWW! What a cute little baby blogger!")

There was a rabbit in our back yard Tuesday evening. It was munching on grass, and looking around, and it even hopped a little.

Pitter Patter thought that it was the most exciting thing she'd ever seen! (And it wasn't scary, like the sheep at the zoo!)

She talked about it for a long time after it had run off. Did you know that rabbits eat grass? and carrots? and that they hop?

(She hopped, too! - well, sorta...any effort toward jumping currently looks something like a power squat!)

For more Quick Takes, visit This Ain't the Lyceum!

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