Wild Hair Weekend

I’ve been on a tear lately. 

In the last four years of our lives we’ve had two (more) babies, moved three times, gotten sober, received a PTSD and TBI diagnosis, gotten medically retired from the military, begun ADHD testing and occupational/speech therapy, began learning trombone and gotten a book published. 

Needless to say, because of all of the aforementioned crazy, things are a mess.

I’m not just talking dirt. I’m talking clutter, chaos, scootching things under things so I don’t have to look at them, dingy windows and souls, broken toys and hearts. There have been ruined clothes and dreams. Messy fingers, faces, rooms and lives.  

 Now that we feel more structurally sound I feel capable of tackling all of those messes I haven’t had time to work on. Now that we don’t feel like any mildly rushing wind will blow us over, I feel ready. It’s amazing what a shored-up foundation will do for a person.

As the caretaker of the bunch, even though organization is not my gift, I am trying. At first I was completely overwhelmed by the sheer amount of additional stuff I really needed to tackle. I have a lot of daily things that have to happen to get work done and children fed and clothed and bills paid and doctors visited. 

Why on earth would I take on more?

This is the question Mr. Wonderful posed to me just this weekend. He couldn’t figure out why I was hustling and bustling about the house. And as y’all probably know, once you begin a project it somehow creates three additional projects. The cycle is exhausting so I admit, I see his point.

But in taking on our master bedroom closet, I had a little closet epiphany: bit by bit, these Wild Hair Weekends as Mr. Wonderful calls them (the ones where I get in a frenzy to get something accomplished) are really just my way of taking my life back.

Over the last four years, I have been undone and unsettled. 

Understandably.

More life change has happened during that time than any other time put together. So I keep reminding myself that the messes that are all around me are pretty normal and I have to tackle them one at a time. Easy does it. Bit by bit. 

 (photo credit femaleentreprenuersassociation.com)

It’s taken a while to get this through to my stubborn self: you mean I can’t be Wonder Woman and just make it work out right now? One snap of my silver bracelets and evil is vanquished? 

 (photo credit wonderwomanfans.tumblr.com)

I wish.

This is why the Wild Hair Weekends exist. Not just to put our family back in order but to get my soul back in order too. To give myself breathing space and sweep out the cobwebs, both literal and figurative. To lessen the clutter and free myself of the baggage.

The struggle is real, but it will be so worth it. 

At least that’s what I’m telling myself….  (Photo credit Meredith Shafer)–My latest project, a desk for my office. I’ll post pics when I’m done.

┬ęCopyright Meredith Shafer 2015. Swing by Instagram and Twitter to say hi!

Running Just as Fast as I Can

If you know me, you understand I’m using my title ironically. I don’t run. Unless something scary is chasing me.

 (Photo credit Thug Life shirts)

But it feels like with all the pieces of my world swirling around I am running to catch up. I choose to believe that even though it feels like things are falling apart some days, they are really just falling into place.

I just need to figure out how to stop running.

It’s hard, because when I take a look at my life, I’m not sure what I can drop or remove or take away. I feel as if we’ve already culled all extraneous things, people and events: I can’t cut much more or I’ll be slicing bone.

I’m not built for speed. I’m built for yoga or weight training or walking but never for speed. So where does that leave those of us who are running to catch up, mostly due to life circumstances?

I don’t have the answers, but I do have a handful of ideas that I’ll be trying to implement. For instance, if I’m going to do all the caregiving I do–both for my four munchkins and for my disabled vet hubby–I need to make sure I’m taking care of me. For me this means getting exercise, reading for fun, talking to girlfriends and finding a space in my head and my house for some peace and quiet.

 (photo credit 3amdad.tumblr.com)

And finding time to drink copious amounts of coffee.

 (photo credit mrcoffee.com)

I also need to have a weekly Date Night with the man I caregive for so that we remain connected as lovers and friends. Otherwise it’s more like I’m nurse and he’s patient, which he wouldn’t mind at certain times if you get my drift, but in real every day life that’s hard on a relationship.

Spending quality time with each of my kiddos is also in my priority list. Not just in a hurry-up-get-ready-for-school-eat-your-breakfast sort of way, but really spending time talking with and listening to each kid’s heart. With lots of kids in the house I’m still trying to find my way through this.

 (Photo credit lifelovelauren.com)

Getting organized is also in my master plan to rule the world. Or at least my life. We’ve had some obstacles here between all the kids, a couple of moves, trying to survive 2013, publishing a book, getting creative enough to write another, and all the mountains of paperwork required by the VA for retirement and disability and caregiving. Have I mentioned that each department within the VA can’t see the paperwork we already submitted to another department? Just means an avalanche of papers are threatening to take over my life.

So while I’m theoretically running to catch up with my life and my loves, I’m reminding myself that giving myself a break and counting my blessings are a necessary part of this process. For my survival.

And my sanity.

 (photo credit Instagram)

┬ęCopyright Meredith Shafer 2015. Swing by Instagram and Twitter to say hi!

Procrastinators Unite…Maybe Tomorrow

Confession time: I am a classic procrastinator. As if you didn’t know­čśë

If I’m not interested in the thing in supposed to be doing, I procrastinate by watching copious amounts of Netflix with Mr. Wonderful, painting my nails, blogging, Instagramming, and (gasp!) cleaning. And y’all know I am not fond of cleaning. Sometimes I just need the pressure of a deadline squeezing me from all sides to finish things.  

 (Photo credit omghow)
But sometimes I wait so long that the squeezing becomes untenable. And the deadline looms like a black cloud and I just shut down.

Ladies and gents, I’m may be there. I’m not sure though because I’m procrastinating taking a hard look at things around here.

I’m procrastinating some of my day job stuff. I’m procrastinating writing. And laundry. Stupid laundry! This should tell you how desperate things have become at my house in the laundry realm–this is my second post today that mentions laundry. 

 (Photo credit etsy.com)

Are y’all super-organized-early-arriving-get-everything-done-two-weeks-before-it’s-due types? If so, color me impressed. And shoot me some ideas about how to get organized. 

 (photo credit organizemyhouse.com)

If you’re a procrastinator like me, how do you bust out of the procrastinating in time to get stuff done?  

I know sometimes creative types like myself have troubles in this area. This knowledge further fuels my procrastinating because I tell myself this is normal. Also there’s the whole four kids and caregiving for my hubby that I sometimes use as an excuse to let things go. 

And if we’re being really honest, because this is just between us, sometimes I feel like since I’m a grownup now, I have days where I just don’t feel like adulting. Or being responsible.  

 (Photo credit lookhuman.com)

Today is a day where adulting feels slightly beyond my grasp. I think I may see what’s on Netflix… 

 (photo credit someecards.com)

┬ęCopyright Meredith Shafer 2015

Swing by Instagram and Twitter to say hi!

Organize Me!

I wish I was one of those ladies who had a naturally organized home. I truly need it, especially with as many moving parts as we have around here.

But it’s a weird cycle when organization’s not your gift. You need to get things organized before you can organize. 

Who has time for that?

I don’t necessarily need a clean house; I just long to know where everything is: a place for everything and everything in its place.

Except.

I already have a place for everything. And I have five other people who sometimes decide a new place is in order.

How do you combat this???

No seriously, how?

We moved last year into a wonderful home that I love and adore. There is a lot of storage and there’s a lovely upstairs which we’ve dubbed the Kid Zone. I can shut the door to the noise and mess and voila! Peace and quiet.

Or as much quiet as four kids can muster during waking hours.

I long for the neatly organized offices and bathrooms and kitchens I see when peruse Pinterest. Are these for real? Do any of y’all live like this?

But then I realize I’m me and this isn’t my gift and while I will continue to strive to know where more of my stuff is, my creative side still needs just enough chaos, just enough mess to keep it real. 

But I wouldn’t turn down a cleaning lady.

(Photo credit operationorganizationbyheidi.com) ┬ęCopyright Meredith Shafer 2015