Looking for answers to life's questions

A Day Off

I know, I know. I’m retired and every day is a day off. Except in my world. When I wake at three or four in the morning and do my morning pages, I make a list of everything that needs doing today. Then I sigh deeply because I know it can’t all get done. How is it that there is so much to do? Well, silly me, I create all that busyness.

trees-arbor-day

I borrowed this from another blog. We need to remember this.

This morning, my body just didn’t want to get out of bed. It kept saying “just a few more minutes of repose and relaxation, please.”  So today I listened and announced to no one there that I was taking a down day. Sitting and watching the Jay’s going back and forth to their nest. Still no sight of baby Jay’s.

In the last weeks I have worked hard on the upper terrace to clear out tree limbs and branches cut down. They pose fire danger in our dry months. Then I add weeds on top of that so that my daughter and I have to work together getting the green waste can down off the hill. Each week it’s repeated. I found that I have muscles that have not been used in a long time. Tomorrow will be that day again. Today, I contemplate those poor trees.

another brown green waste can full

Green waste can full again

 

branches

So many dead branches

 

weeding required

Weeds, weeds everywhere

I’ve done a bit of sewing when I can concentrate. I found my box of pins under my bed languishing without purpose. I wore pins on my clothes for years and had a large collection. What could be done with them? I had a bit of inspiration and some scrap fabric given to me by friend going into a retirement facility. Now I can think of her daily as I see my pins each time I pass by. When I sent a photo to my son, his wife requested one as a gift for a friend. I have more scrap to make another similar but not exact. Request is on the list of to-dos along with cushions for the front porch furniture.

finished pin hange

I’ve made more hearts sent them out in the world to bring a little cheer.

I walk at least 5 days a week in my neighborhood where I see change daily. Nothing stays the same if you pay close attention. A young man and his family across the street draw a great deal of criticism from some of the neighbors over their large collection and constant running of vehicles. I sit watching with amusement as the entrepreneurial skills of this young man take an unusual leaning. He is very hardworking and minds his own business. The Redneck Limousine was from 2019.

My son sent some photos over the last weeks. He has been recovering the little chairs the kids sit in at the preschool. It seems their Gracie has taking to them while each waits its turn to be completed.
This week, I was sent photos of Gracie’s new sibling, a foster for now. This little darling was found under the porch yelling quite loudly. She or he gets quiet on two occasions, eating or laying in my son’s lap. Gracie is not a lap cat so my son is delighted with this little cuddler.

Gracie on the chair

Gracie likes the kids chairs

 

gracie hiding

Even better with 2 chairs making a roof and hiding place

 

rescued from under the porch

Rescued from under the porch.

 

foundling foster

Loud but cuddly

There is evidence of hopefulness and refusal to give up even when your roots have been cut out from under you in these trying times.

Do you find ways and times to just take a day off and let the day flow as it wants?

From my heart to yours,
Marlene Herself

Comments on: "A Day Off" (77)

  1. What a nice idea to display your pins, very ingenious 🙂
    I love the cats and the large cars are quite funny!

    The bright side of having to weed and clear the wood is that is “free exercise”, as long as it’s not taking too much of a toll on you.
    You deserve(d) a day off after waking up early every day! And anyway, we should listen to our body when it says “I need a break”.

    Liebe Gruesse ❤

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you so much for the kind words. I had no idea I had that many pins until they were all up there. 😉 I had to listen to my body this time. I really did over do it last week so it’s in healing mode. It’s so meditative that I get lost and can’t seem to stop. Free exercise is an understatement. 🙂 I’ll try to be gentler with my self next time.
      Liebe Gruesse (( ))

      Liked by 2 people

  2. Taking a day off at times is essential. I had a day off today too and spent most of it relaxing. Looks like you are doing a lot of work outside!

    Liked by 1 person

    • It happens every spring and summer. Good to hear you are taking some down time too. It is essential. I’ll be back out there in the morning when the sun just comes up. Today will be inside work. This old body isn’t what it used to be. 😉 Enjoy your day, Maja.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Cute kitten – a candidate for an imperial position in someones home I’m sure. Also a nice collection of pins! I am reminded of a former Secretary of State who had an impressive collection and relayed her feelings by what she chose to wear.

    Liked by 1 person

    • My son will have a hard time letting go of this little one. He loves a cuddly kitten. I’ve collected Angel and butterfly pins for years and they are an expression of what I’m feeling that day. Who knew that a Secretary of State would do that too. 😉 Thanks for the visit. I’m not sure I can deal with the new WP though. It’s made something easy so much harder.

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  4. I’m just watching how Kew Gardens learnt from a storm, where the uprooted tree thrived after, because it needed it, it needed to get out of the compacted soil where people had trodden. As for what we see as dead, the fungi sees as new life, so those branches are probably full of all sorts of critters and fungi.

    Liked by 2 people

  5. Hey Marlene! I’m doing just that today. I had breakfast with a friend that I hadn’t seen in a few years, and now am sitting in the afternoon sun getting caught up on reading. I don’t take this time often, but today seems like a good day to do it. Take care, my friend.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. I love your collection of pins! I’m taking today off also as I did too much yard work yesterday and am paying for it today. The first time of cutting the grass does me in. There is plenty of stuff to do in the house and I’ve done a bit of it. For the most part just taking the day off to recoup. lol Big hugs my friend!

    Liked by 1 person

    • That’s exactly why I had to take the day off, Jackie. Hurt myself weeding. 🙂 It was painful to get up out of the chair for a couple of days. Kind of crazy. Like you, there is no shortage of things to do. Enjoy a little rest now. Hugs to you too.

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  7. Such a pretty, clever display idea! I should do something like that with my earrings. I don’t wear pins much, and have only one, which I use to hold together the edges of a buttonless cardigan, but I have many pairs of earrings, many of which I forget about because I don’t generally see them. You’ve given me ideas!

    Liked by 3 people

    • Yay! I finally gave you and idea. I’ve thought about it for earrings too but not sure they would hold through. I’ll look to see if you come up with something that will work. I was happy just to use up some of the flannel scraps I’ve had for a couple of years now. I always wore an Angel or butterfly on my work or going out clothes. Now I do neither. ;( So they are art. 🙂 Are you healing ok? I kept meaning to ask. Always in my thoughts.

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  8. Hi, Marlene. I enjoyed your newsy post. You’ve been busy! I love your idea for displaying pins. The redneck limo and the dead sled are really quite something. Never a dull moment in your neighborhood, eh?

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Great post, Marlene! One of these days, I plan to follow your lead and take the day off. I struggle with that even though I know it’s so important. I’m looking at my beautiful heart from you right now! xo

    Liked by 1 person

    • Glad you are still enjoying the heart, Jill. I was just saying to the last commenter that it’s taken me years to go from type A to type R as in relax. My body is very good at giving me warning that I have breached the levy of output and if I don’t listen, I pay dearly. Never want to go down that road again. It’s not somewhere you want to end up. Take it easy, Please. A day off gives me twice the energy the next day.

      Liked by 1 person

  10. It takes a lot to let go in these times. May you have many more days of nurturing and observing what happens 🙏 Your display of pins, or a we say brooches, is quite lovely.💕

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you, Val. Yes, I’m learning to let go of so much these days. I was a driven person from childhood. We were not allowed to sit and just be. Always had to be doing. It’s taken years to go from type A to type R for relax. 😉 Those old broaches are a bit outdated for young people and I really wanted to enjoy them a while longer. So now they are a piece of art. Thanks for stopping by.

      Liked by 2 people

  11. Wonderful post Marlene. I love seeing what you’re up to and all the things that make up a day in your world. Glad you gave yourself permission to relax for a bit. Sometimes that’s more important than checking things off the to-do list.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Glad you enjoyed this, Deb. I’m usually up to no good but we know that already. I’ve learned the hard way that sometimes I just have to give in and dial it back. I’ll check of much more later that way. How is your daughter? I’ve been thinking about her and hoping things aren’t as bad as they seemed. Sending hugs.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Thanks Marlene, she’s doing well. Got her staples out, healing nicely and a new cast for another 4 weeks still restricted from any weight on the leg. She can drive now though, which helps her mentally I think, and she’s working remotely with the new job site.

        Liked by 1 person

      • That is mostly very good news!! I’m so happy to hear the new job stepped up for her. That has to help too. I love hearing good news. Thanks for letting me know.

        Liked by 1 person

  12. What a beautiful and varied range of “pins” – at first I thought you meant dressmaking pins, because what you call pins over there we call brooches over here! I thought it was odd that you would have been excited about finding pins under your bed **hahaha

    Liked by 3 people

    • Brooch is such an old world word that people equate it old fashioned looking. I’ve always collected anything to do with Angels and butterflies so these just started popping up and became a collection. I have quite a collection of sewing pins too. My kids will have a magnificent sale one day. 😉 I try to keep sewing pins out of my bedroom though. 😉 Thanks for stopping by, Jill.

      Liked by 1 person

  13. The rescue kitty is adorable; I had a gray rescue very similar to that, years ago…Yasmin. Seems like you’re busy even when you’re taking time off, Marlene:) I rarely take a whole day but sometimes a half. Take care!

    Liked by 1 person

    • A partial day off is still a good start. Writing a blog is more relaxing than pulling weeds on my body at least. I hurt myself last week getting into positions I haven’t been in for 6 months. It will get easier with time. Posts come sparingly during spring and summer with all the outside work. Yasmin is a sweet name. I’m not sure they are going to keep it but my son loves that it cuddles. It will be hard for him to let it go. Gracie doesn’t share well.

      Liked by 1 person

  14. Hey hey Marlene-a-go-go ! Good for you to have a day without a schedule. I highly recommend them, LOL. Your home backs to on to a beautiful forest. I do understand your concern about fire too. Looks like a big job! I have a few vintage brooches but nothing like your collection. I love wearing them on my jean jacket. Unfortunately, I lost a favourite on in Victoria on an outing with Alys and my cousin Sherri. We backtracked but we didn’t find it.
    What a beautiful kitten! Look at those eyes. It would be a keeper for sure. Beyond adorable! xo K

    Liked by 1 person

    • My son is very attached to this baby. They have bonded. I told him he’s a mom now. I wear some small pins on my hats now since I have to wear a hat. I no longer have any place to dress up for so they are now a hanging art quilt. 🙂 I do hate when clasps fail and they get lost. At least these are not expensive, just cute. I am so fortunate to have that forest behind me. The ice storm only did a little damage back there. We have already had one fire here last month but they managed it fairly quickly. I’ll be back up there tomorrow. I think my go go got up and went. 🙂 Hugs.

      Liked by 1 person

  15. I remember that day. What a shame.

    Liked by 1 person

  16. Great post, Marlene. I’m glad you are slowly making your way through all of nature’s debris. You’ve had a brutal storm to clean up after. It’s hard not to worry about fires once you’ve had to evacuate from one. I’ve been noticing how dry the grass weeds are near all our freeway off-ramps. One tossed cigarette, and off they go. We average 15 inches of rain a season in San Jose. We only got 5 this season. 😦

    I’m in love with that sweet little kitten. She/he’s a keeper. Gracie is a tortoise, so I get the aloofness. Tessa is that way, too.

    I’m glad you unearthed your pin/brooch collection. It’s nice to bring them out and display them all together. You are kind to make one for your DIL.

    It’s good to take a day for yourself, unscheduled. I need to do more of that myself.

    Liked by 1 person

    • 5 inches is just not enough rain anywhere. I think we will continue to see less and less rain everywhere except in places that don’t need it.

      I have the scrap fabric and the pin hanger isn’t hard to do. I’ll have it done next week. They will show up on the 9th and can take it home with them.

      That explains some of Gracie’s aloofness. E is going to have a hard time letting go of the little fluff ball. I don’t think he’ll be allowed to keep it since they have to leave the cats to someone for care when they travel.

      My body dictated the off day. Too many weeds too quickly. I never learn. 🙂 Hugs

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  17. I got up and did morning pages before I retired. maybe i should take up the habit again. I’m having a problem finding enough time to do everything.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Join the crowd of those who don’t have enough time for everything. My morning pages are often one page long. 😉 It’s just a way to document time, date, temp, sleep and what I plan to get done. Just organizing my thoughts about the day. I’ve had to let a lot of things go and learn to delegate what I can. You sound like me. How did I ever have time to have a job on top of everything else. At least we are never bored. Too many hobbies. 😉 Thanks for the visit, Molly.

      Liked by 1 person

  18. This post is so enjoyable. You say how much work the cleanup on your property is, and also admit that you are somewhat injured from moving and bending in ways you haven’t since last year, and yet you don’t sound discouraged or defeated. It’s a life lesson for me: to hang in there, keep at it (carefully), and things get addressed. I am thrilled at how BEAUTIFUL that pin holder turned out. And you also got to use up fabric you were saving, which feels good. It must feel good to have inspired a reader to create something for an earring collection. 🙂 Your heart always shines through in your posts and I admire you so much. You are caring about your kids, caring about the jays, caring about the kitten, caring about friends (the hearts). Your heart just goes on and on. Yesterday I saw Violet-green swallows checking out my birdhouse again, and today more are looking at it. I would love for a family to move in.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks so much for all the kind words. I do everything in life with great love, even if I’m a little stiff and sore later. 🙂 The pin holder was someone else’s scrap that I took and have now made use of. I have another one on the sewing table ready to start. I do hope you get a resident for your birdhouse. I’m having a ball watching the Jays. Have your honey jar cleaned and ready to get back to you somehow. Hope we get a chance to chat soon. Hugs and love.

      Liked by 1 person

  19. Hi Marlene! Your posts are always a joy to read. I love your display of pins. Such a great way to remember a friend. I can see why your neighbor’s collection of cars makes you smile. Keep those hearts coming!! The tree that keeps on growing is a message to everyone. It certainly struck me in the best of ways.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you, Jennie. The tree that never gives up struck me too. I do live in an interesting neighborhood. I do miss my sweet friend. It’s always sad when we have to give up the things that bring us joy. I do wish I had thought of the pin hanger sooner but things develop in their own time. Giant squishy hugs. I’m still behind. Will catch up again …next winter?? 😉

      Liked by 1 person

  20. I was a bit confused by pins , which I think of as things one uses in sewing until I saw the picture. I would call them brooches or even badges. Any way nice to display them. Good work on the ground clearance. I find bin day spurs me on to do gardening too. Its amazing how in retirement one can be busy doing nothing everyday. A to do list does help, although I sometimes wonder at how I ever managed to do everything every day and still go to work. The kitten is adorable.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I wonder the same thing, Cathy. I had 3 teenagers at home, worked a full time job and took care of the MIL along with 3/4 of an acre of property and housework. I think once you start slowing down, you keep slowing down. I never get it all done but that doesn’t stop the trying. 🙂 I always thought of a broach as something elegant and tasteful. These are just fun things to pin on my shirts when I dressed up and went out in the world. None of that anymore. Kind of sad. One of those was my mother’s name badge from work. I keep it to think of her. Bin day does spur one on to see how much more we can get in it. 😉 I’ve called the kitten Puff. We will see if the name sticks. Thanks for the visit.

      Liked by 1 person

  21. My body has been demanding down-time lately. It would be easier if I had a lap kitten. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Their cat, Gracie is not a lap cat either. I think that’s why my son is so enthralled with this one. Always listen to your body, Erin. It has ways to get you to pay attention.

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  22. The pins are a great hobby! Cool! The kitties are cute and the vehicles crack me up! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • The pins were long ago accessories that were to make my statement for the day when I went to work or out somewhere special. No one else wants them so now they are art. 🙂 I think all kittens and puppies are cute too. That neighbor never ceases to entertain. To be so young again. Thanks for the visit, Tom.

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  23. So much in this amazing post! Those pins!! I love your creativity and how you make everything so unique. I will not brag here that I have one of your mug rugs and it has a place of honor on my writing table. It is so so special to me. I need a day off so badly and you’re right. It’s my choice to give myself one. May we stay rooted in our love and kindness and compassion.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks for stopping by, Pam. I’m glad you are enjoying the mug rug. One day I’ll make one for myself but for now, I love sending them out into the world with a little love attached. I’m taking more days off than I’d care too as I rapidly approach 73. Retirement has been a full time job until now. Sometimes, with down time, we get fresh inspiration. That makes the time worthwhile. I’m all for more love, kindness and compassion. Pass it around. 😉 Hugs.

      Liked by 1 person

  24. Hi, Marlene! For some reason, I haven’t been able to leave comments anywhere for a while now, but it seems that’s fixed now. I enjoyed this post so much! The vehicles made me smile and I do love that sweet kitten . . . good thing it’s not a long-haired calico or I’d be plotting a kidnapping . . .

    Are those jays Stellar Jays, do you know? We have Stellars here and they are so beautiful; our provincial bird, too.

    The brooch displays are perfect; how nice to see them daily, even when you don’t wear them often. I like your idea of wearing them on your hat. (I grew up calling them brooches, too; like several others here, to me ‘pins’ are for dressmaking or other stitching)

    I’ve recently gotten back into reading, almost as I did for most of my life. I’ve read four very long books in less than a week, mostly by reading in bed in the morning, reading at the table between teatime and suppertime, then reading in bed again at the end of the day. Sometimes even reading after supper and before bedtime . . . I really needed that, I think.

    That saying at the top sure struck a chord with me, too; “too bad they only produce the oxygen we need to breathe”!!) I’ve loved trees all my life and I like that they are just ‘there’ if you know what I mean.

    Glad you two had a lovely birthday holiday; I could sure hear the wind in that video . . .

    Also glad you are paying attention to your body, even if only the day after the first messages . . . I do that, still and likely will to the end of my days. In general, I find I’m speeding up slowly rather than slowing down. So much of my life was spent inside books and now I have a very long list of projects and plans that I’d love to complete . . .

    Stay well, Marlene! It was lovely to come here and read this. ~ Linne

    Liked by 1 person

    • I’ve missed you, Linne! I’ve been checked out myself these days. Too much too and not enough energy to get it done. I’m not posting often anymore. Getting my second vaccine tomorrow morning and expecting to lose the day of productivity. Just finished a smaller pin hanger for my ex DIL to give as a gift to one of her friends. Again from scrap fabric. I have a quilt sandwiched and ready to machine quilt but the cushions for porch furniture is first and I’m procrastinating. Zippers. ;( Always a long list in the summer months so writing has to take a back seat. Son will be here on the 9th with partner to do some chores here. We have a heat wave this week so I’m moving slowly. I’ll catch up soon enough. I’m so glad to hear from you. Send an email and let me know what’s going on. Hugs and love, M

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  25. Yep, I do get these days too, though I more often try not to listen and just head on with my plans. Sometimes though, maybe more often than not, I should have done just like you did – stay in bed and let the world go by. It actually takes quite a bit of courage to do that, right? And I can very much relate to that endless to-do list that one creates oneself. 😉
    The pin hanger looks fab! What a great way to display them all! It’s always so sad when they’re just lying around and not getting worn, isn’t it? And that saying about the trees is a hoot! Though kind of sad too when you imagine that people would only feel inspired to plant new ones if they gave off wifi!
    And all that work in your garden! No wonder you’re feeling new muscles developing! I get sore muscles just from looking at it – LOL! 😀

    Liked by 1 person

    • I have visitors coming today and tomorrow and instead of rushing off the scrub floors, etc, I’m sitting here with my cuppa and reading this. 🙂 I’m learning to take breathers. They weren’t allowed in my growing up years and never got the fine art of chillin down until way too late in life. But now that the cuppa is gone and a comment is sent, I’ll toddle on up that darn hill before I start my normal drill. I’ve been planting like a crazy person this week. Thinking of you and hoping all is well.

      Liked by 1 person

      • I still need to learn to take breathers too, Marlene! But aren’t they nice when one allows oneself one every now and again? 😉
        Looking forward to see pictures of your planting’s success!!

        Liked by 1 person

  26. We all need down-time to rest our busy minds and bodies. Retirement is not all lazing around. Paid jobs are simply replaced with others. Routine helps me allocate some play time and not feel guilty about it. Cute kitty!

    Liked by 1 person

    • You are so right about just replacing jobs. I have been as busy in retirement as when I had a job and kids running around. But then I was never one to sit and watch soaps all day. I drive myself harder then anyone else would to keep being a viable human. I’m learning lately to relax more and be ok with just being. For a minute at least. 😉 Looks like Sonar gets to stay. 😉

      Liked by 1 person

      • Lovely! You will do more with life than most people with an attitude of appreciating every minute. The smartphone games and social media waffle has replaced soap operas as the new time waster. I suppose blogging may be included in that if we don’t share valuable stuff in our posts.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Blogging connects us and we learn from each other so it’s at least interactive. I don’t play games of any nature and that drives many of my friends nuts. I figure the biggest puzzle or game is my quilting and sewing projects. Everything is a challenge there.

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  27. Marlene! That little foster sib of Gracie is adorable!!! What a sweetheart. And that meme or plaque or quote you posted–wonderful! Just the oxygen we breathe. How unimportant in the scheme of technology (yeah, right). I hear you on the way we don’t take time to just be or relax. I am a big culprit of that. Your pins are lovely. Am I right that you have lots of wings in there? Angels, especially, and butterflies? I’m a big lover of wings.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yes, Luanne. Those are Angel and butterfly wings. I have collected so much of each for years. That was the go to gift for mom on every occasion. It looks like the foster is staying. Gracie finally relented and is warming to Sonar and has stopped hissing and swiping at him. He is just so cuddly and talkative and made himself a fixture. Yes, the meme is really a good one to keep passing on. We need to be more mindful. Since I already have breathing issues, it’s especially important. Hope you are doing well.

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  28. I love “Nothing stays the same if you pay close attention.”

    Liked by 1 person

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