by Tina Stone
My journey into becoming a Fly Lady Homesteader
Deep down, I think homesteading runs in my blood. I've always loved planting and growing things. Animals are a huge part of my life and so is nature and I really think now is the time for me to get back to the basics. To rejuvenate and reconnect with what is vitally important to me needs to be something I focus on and not let it just get juggled to the back burner. |
How many years have I dreamed of wanting a greenhouse but I never made it a priority to accomplish that dream. How much healthier and happy would I be or would my husband and family be if these past years I had been home growing the vegetables we eat? Now, more than ever, with the way mass growing trends are headed with genetically modified this and that, the chemicals, hormones and other unnatural being done to not only vegetables, crops and the animals that are grown for slaughter, but also to the very soil and water being used to propagate those things.
Is it any wonder our bodies are riddled with disease, aches, and pains? That we are in a constant battle with exhaustion and mental health issues? The very food we eat is slowly but surely killing us. God created food to sustain our bodies. To give it strength, to give it vitality and to heal us and protect us. Our bodies were not made or equipped to deal with, process or work on the majority of the stuff we put into it.
I am only 45 years old and over the course of the last four years, I've lost the vast majority of my mobility because of chronic cellulitis infections not once or twice but 7 times ya'll within a three year period. These infections were so bad, I had more than one doctor advise I actually have my left leg amputated...cut off! The severity of these infections caused my kidneys to completely shut down three times, requiring me to have multiple rounds of emergency dialysis. I've had to have three blood transfusions because several times these infections became septic and got into my blood and poisoned by whole body. On top of all that, I have an enlarged heart, congestive heart failure, asthma, high blood pressure, and hypertension.
This creates a vicious cycle. My heart is not strong enough to pump the fluids in my system properly. As a result, fluid builds up in my legs to the point they swell so big they crack and small open sores appear. These skin breaks allow bacteria to enter and thus, I get infections.
Not all has been bad news. I have been an insulin dependant diabetic since I was aged 13. I am not sure if the toll on my system from being so sick did it, or if those blood transfusions did it...I do not know by what method God used, but He healed me of diabetes. A year and a half ago, I was told I was in the PRE Diabetic range and was taken OFF all my diabetic medications and I have not needed them since. Praise the Lord for that!
My battle with these infections left me weak, exhausted, depressed and unable to walk. I spent huge amounts of time in hospital beds - both in the hospital and at home. My legs became so unstable, I started falling regularly and as a result, my Doctor insisted I start using a wheelchair. Now, I use a combination of wheelchair and walker, depending on my energy level and what exactly I plan to get up to do. Going outside, the wheelchair is a must.
Suddenly finding myself disabled and unable to hold a "traditional" job in public, I found myself with a WHOLE LOT of free time on my hands and nothing with which to fill it. I knew deep down, somehow, someway, my life was going to have to change. It simply could NOT stay the way it was or one thing was for certain. I was going to die.
Now, I am what some have termed, a stubborn woman. I agree. I am stubborn, tenacious and hard-headed and I know when I put my mind to something, I CAN do it. However, I am also very impulsive, I have ADHD so my attention span is short, I lose interest in things very easily, I get distracted, and I lose my focus. I think, at 45 it is high time for me to overcome all this and be the woman I know God planned for me to be.
This is where Homesteading comes into play. Sure, I could just go the route so many before me has taken and hit the gym and follow one type of diet or other and sure, that would probably help with a handful of my health issues. That's just not for me! I've tried multiple times in the past and have failed epically each time. The fact of the matter is most exercise does not give me any fulfillment or sense of accomplishment and I become bored with it quickly.
Homesteading allows me to focus on things I naturally love and enjoy doing, things God created me for and I can still get basically the same benefits without the failures. How? Well, have you ever hoed up a patch of land for planting? That in itself is a major cardio workout! You're grasping the hoe, your stabbing it into the soil, breaking up the ground, and doing it over and over...until your patch of garden or your flower beds are turned over. I promise you'll have used muscles you forgot you even had. Not only that, but you're breathing the fresh air, you're smelling the freshly overturned soil and there is just something very grounding and satisfying about digging in the dirt.
On top of that, you know the labor and sweat your putting into it, is going to result in fresh, homegrown, healthy, life-giving food for your body, mind, and soul. That there, is what makes the pay off so much more than say, what I would get from running on a treadmill in a gym somewhere. The physical exercise invested and put forth doing homesteading tasks, I feel, will hold my attention for a greater span of time and as I see the results of my labor, the fresh veggies, fresh herbs, the beautiful flowers, the rich compost, the chirps from the hens, the fresh eggs, etc..I think that will serve to keep me motivated and focused far longer than other things I've tried in the past.
And, this is absolutely the perfect time to get started!
WHY am I going to blog about this? Well, number one, I love to write and I think writing about my experiences will be an enjoyable activity for me. I also think, at some point, maybe I will want to share this journey with other like-minded folks out there. Additionally, I think there is something to be said for building a support system for days when you become disenchanted, frustrated and feel like giving up. Cos, sure as the sun rises and sets, we are all going to have days like that. On those days, it is nice to have people who you know understand where your coming from. They done been there themselves and can sort of boost you back on track.
It is also a good way to build in a sense of accountability. Lord knows it is easy to say we are going to do something. I don't know about you, but I am great at coming up with all sorts of fabulous ideas and plans and before you know it, I've let myself become distracted and off course. A good plan needs an element of accountability. So, If I know that you know I have said I am going to do something, and I have set a reasonable goal and set my deadline, then I know you're going to be expecting a result, whether it's good or bad.
So that is why I've decided to start blogging this journey I have decided to launch myself on. For now, as I am getting organized and set up, I'll write about it, but I think I'll keep it private. Just for now. But I look forward to the day when I can invite you to join me on this new adventure.
|Everything came to a head this past week. I won't lie, it was pretty rough going. Sunday evening I was here at my desk doing what I normally do when out of nowhere I got chilled. Suddenly, I was freezing and had horrible chills and shaking. My husband helped me get into the bed where he piled not one but three thick comforters on me and I swallowed some Tylenol. For nearly 5 hours I lay there dozing in and out shaking uncontrollably feeling like every muscle in my body wanted to seize up and cramp. My hands, stomach, sides, calves in my legs, my feet..longest five hours of my entire life, or so it felt.
Then, about 2 in the morning the chills stopped and I went into a sweat. I mean, the heat coming off me could have fried an egg. My temp hit 104 and I swallowed more fever meds. However, as thirsty and parched as I was, my stomach decided it did not want water or anything else in it. I tried sipping cool water and cold tea but both came back up as fast as it went down. My husband had cranked up the air conditioning, took away the comforters and put the fan blowing directly on me. About two hours into that, my bed and gown were so soaked I had no choice but to hobble into the bathroom for a cool shower while my sweet husband changed the bedding. When I say a cool shower, I mean I turned it on full cold and stood under it. It barely registered as lukewarm to my skin. Finally, about 8am my body temperature seemed to regulate. I was able to slowly sip tea that had ginger, cinnamon, and cloves in it. I think the spices helped soothe my stomach and I kept the fluid down. I slept the entire day and don't remember anything much until the very next day.
I woke up and my left leg was throbbing. My husband carefully helped me unwrap the leg and the swelling was minimal due to being wrapped. But it was deep red and had blistered. Much like a second almost third-degree sunburn. I always blamed this on the antibiotics the hospitals gave me but apparently, no, it happens as a result of the infection. I keep on hand a bottle of aloe gel and my husband helped me gently slather it on my poor leg and then he wrapped it back up nice and securely. I spent the next two days in bed with my leg elevated on pillows. For most of that time, I slept. When my body fights an infection, it gets exhausted easily. I always heard your body heals itself while your sleeping. So, I didn't resist the need for massive amounts of sleep.
I love my husband dearly. He seems to know me even more than I know myself. I don't even know how many boxes and bowls of jello he made over the past week for me. Jello, yogurt, and tea are about all I was able to keep down for the better part of the week. Then, he made me buttered rice with cabbage which I held down. He is a wonderful man. And to think people told me marrying him was the worst mistake I would ever make in my life. For once, I am so glad I am stubborn and don't always listen to what others say!
Well, here we are, yesterday, I was so sick of laying in bed, and my tailbone is sore from laying on it so much. I was worried about getting bedsore, so I forced myself to sit up in my wheelchair a few hours. I was able to come online and check my emails and send a few and read a few items. I sat up for about three hours and my leg started to ache again and so it was back to bed.
Today, I've managed to sit up going on five hours. After finishing this entry, I will more than likely head back to the bed and elevate my leg. I have to remember now that I'm feeling better and the worst has passed, to take slow steps. Not to push to hard to fast. But I am very grateful to be back up in my chair and back writing and doing things I really enjoy. My day is never really complete until I've checked in here and have seen what my writer friends are up to.
I am excited that I am able to get up because tomorrow is the deadline for the Royal Writing Competition I'm sponsoring. I've made it a point to read the entries as they come in, so I'm not so overwhelmed at the last minute. I will have a few but by Monday I will be able to announce the grand winners! That is always the most exciting part. I LOVE telling people they win and I love giving out goodies and prizes! Once this is over, I will turn my full and complete attention over to the two huge contests I have planned for August and September, which will laps into the first week or two of October. There is still So much work that needs to be done! Including another fundraiser. I've got to kick myself into high gear come next week and I need all my good health and strength to do it.
|Apparently hitting "edit" and just adding to existing entries does NOT count to the automatic blog reminder system. I've kept a running entry for the week concerning the infection flair up in my leg forcing me to be bedbound for the most part. I am, for the most part back to my normal routine, but I do need to take breaks and remember to elevate my leg off and on.
We've had an explosion in the number of spiders here in the house. I guess the warm weather and the rains have promoted this. For anyone reading this who does not know, I allow Daddy Long Leg Spiders to share our living space. WHY? Do you ask...well, it is simple. For some reason, this house is prone to getting spiders. Maybe cos we live near a lot that is wooded, I'm not sure. When we first moved in, we killed what I believe was a brown recluse which is poisonous.
Daddy Long Legs are actually very, very poisonous, and deadly. HOWEVER, their jaws are too weak to bite the skin of a human and animal, and that renders them harmless to humans and say, dogs, cats, and such. But they are deadly to other insects! It just so happens Daddy Long Legs are territorial and will kill and eat other spiders, even those that are poisonous to humans and animals. Therefore, because of this, I feel the Daddy Long Legs earn their keep and as long as they keep all the other spiders and bugs out, they are a welcome guest in my home.
Even as I write this, there is a very tiny baby Daddy Long Leg spider crawling along with my computer and getting just as close to my hands as it dares. Allowing these creatures to live in my home has made me aware they are curious by nature and will oftentimes creep closer to me. They are harmless and I don't mind allowing them to crawl on my hand or fingers. Sometimes, I do wonder what they are thinking. Every few months, we get an overabundance of spiders in the house and my husband has to load up a shoebox full of them and release them outside in the wooded area.
People tend to think I'm crazy for allowing spiders to live in the house. IF people would be more accepting of nature around them and try to work WITH it instead of against it, they just might learn a few valuable lessons!
I am going to do more reading and research and find out if I can make use of these little creatures in more ways around my homestead.
|This is day three of being trapped in my bed because a cellulitis infection as tried once again to take control of my leg. Day one, I mostly slept between chills, where I shivered and shook for hours at a time, to breaking said chills and going into heavy sweats that soaked me, the bed and all the bedding to the point everything had to be changed several times. This was mingled with nausea and dizziness, and I was forced to keep a bucket handy. I couldn't stand for anything whatsoever to touch my leg. It radiated and pulsated with pain and hurt to move much less stand on it. I was thankful for the peacefulness of sleep.
Day Two, the pain was still there. Chills and fever have not returned. I held down some jello and tea. Forced myself to stand on my leg and hobble rather clumsily to the bathroom where I spent a good twenty minutes cleaning myself up. Leg feels hot and swollen to the touch and tho it hurts, I allowed my husband to wrap it snuggly with the ace bandages to help add a bit of compression to it. From experience, I KNOW this will ease the pain and help aid in the healing. I was exhausted when I returned to bed, and my husband helped get my leg propped up on extra pillows. After a nap, I was ready to check-in at writing.com and read the newsfeed and check emails. I felt I'd been away forever!!
Day Three, I woke and was relieved that the screaming pain in my leg has toned down some. I could move it without bringing tears to my eyes and I sat on the side of the bed with my legs down for almost an hour and a half. Progress! Stood, and while it hurt, I was able to hobble to the bathroom a little less clumsy, do my freshening up, and return to the bed in fair amount of time. I've been more alert today, Husband made a cake and plans to bake chicken tonight. What would I ever do without him? HE really is so amazing. He takes such good care of me in these times of sickness when I get down like this. I'm so thankful it looks like my body and God are keeping this infection under control and seems to be healing. I'm blessed I won't have to go to the hospital. Keeping it elevated and staying OFF of it are keys to faster healing, as is binding it and remembering to do the basic physical therapy moves I was taught to help keep circulation flowing. I shall update this post again with daily reports until I'm back up and on the go once again!
Day Four: It is Friday and I am sick of this bed! My tailbone hurts from being in the same position for too long. Despite my husband's protests, I've forced myself to get up and get into my wheelchair. It's not so bad once I'm settled. I have been sitting here at my desk getting a few odds and ends taken care of. I gave the kittens their first meal today. They jumped right in and didn't need ANY coaching or persuading to eat. They loved the shredded chicken and turkey with gravy. Their little tounges lapped at full speed! Mama Cat polished off the last of what they did not eat. She is starting to come around and show more interest in things going on around her. We are letting HER make her moves. Giving her space and time she needs and we feel sure she will accept us in HER own time. It is nice to be up out of the bed. I promised my husband I would not overdo it, so I will have to go back soon, but for now, I'm enjoying my "freedom".
Saturday was uneventful and unproductive. I did not listen to my husband yesterday and today my leg is swollen and irritated again. I have to stay put in the bed with my leg elevated on pillows. I'm stuck watching movies, cuddling with the dogs, chatting on Hangout, and resigned to the fact I won't be getting much of anything done today.
Sunday, Day Six: Being stuck in bed at home is a lot better than being stuck in bed at the hospital, so for that I really AM thankful, tho I might not have sounded like it in previous notations. The swelling in my leg has gone down again and I sat on the side of the bed while my husband helped re-wrap my leg. The snug bandage actually feels good on my leg, it eases the pain. I sat in my wheelchair and we fed the kittens their first solid food! They took to it almost instantly without being coached or coaxed. They loved it! The three of them ate nearly a whole can of cat food. When my check comes on the first of the month, I'll be sure to order them some dry kitten chow and some more wet food, but then will wean them off the wet until they eat only the dry food. It is much better for their little teeth. Their little personalities are starting to develop and I'm starting to notice the little differences between them so I can tell them apart. We've decided to name them Peace, Hope, and Love. (aka Lovie) but those might change as they get a bit older.
Monday, Day Seven: I have made progress today! I hobbled none too gracefully from the bed to the bathroom without holding on to the walker. Husband rewrapped my leg and I'm in my wheelchair. We had coffee at the kitchen table and then fed the critters. I've sat here at my desk, sipping coffee, and working on my portfolio. I got wind that a galactical team of highly specialized Trekkies beamed aboard my port and like any Southern woman, I have run around like a chicken with her head cut off trying to make my port feel welcoming and hospitable. I've done a bit of re-organizing and sweeping things into proper places, added bits of color with new graphics, and tidied up the nooks and crannies they might find themselves in.
|This is turning into more of a weekly blog than a daily one, and I think I should be happy with that. Who says a blog must be written every day? I was never one of those girls who kept a daily diary so, I suppose it should come as no surprise to me that writing a blog entry every day would be any different. Therefore, I'm gonna stop stressing over my lack of daily blogging skills/motivation and be happy with a weekly one. This isn't a heavily read item anyway!
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I took a few moments to skim back over previous entries and feel I need to do some follow up notes and comments.
The whole entry for Inspiration or Folly can be filed under folly. For the time being anyway. Once I got to digging around in the whole subject matter, I realized I'm not all THAT interested in it, not to the point I should be. I am easily distracted and find myself procrastinating when it comes to doing things to advance that project. I'm more than willing to let other things take priority and that tells me a lot. IF my heart isn't totally into something, it's just not going to go well. I'm an ALL or NOTHING type girl, and I've come to understand and accept that. It's not in my nature to just do things halfway or a little bit. So, for now, I've just filed that whole thing away where it will sit and collect dust, and eventually, I'll decide to just forget it. Unless. There's always an "unless". Someone or something might come along and spark something that would break this subject wide open and give me the boost of interest I need to be motivated. We'll just have to wait and see!
I've been experimenting with growing my "trash". We had a ton of carrots, so I cut off the tops and made little watering systems for them. It took only two days for green leaves to start growing! I also had luck sprouting the roots of onions I put into the watering system I've made. However, when I've taken the newly sprouted things that seemed to thrive in the water systems and planted them in the fortified soil they all died within days of being planted. It makes me wonder, is there something wrong with the soil? Did I stun them somehow? Should I have left them in the water longer? I will start again, and this time will grow two groups and leave one group longer in the water, and the other group I'll divide. One group, I'll plant in the same soil and the other, I'll use a different soil.
My cats killed the other plants I had growing. I had a good pot of chives and a pot of basil growing and they were doing great! Until my cats decided to eat ALL the leaves and shoots off the plants. I walked into the dining room one morning and ALL my plants were gone! All that was left was the short stalks lol. So, the lesson here is don't grow herbs where the cats can get to them!
Let the Son shine in your life.
|My goodness! Another whole 8 days has passed in a blink of an eye. I'm not doing to good at keeping up with this blog. I get so caught up in other things. I'm going to have to do better!
My birthday was Sunday, and No, I'm NOT telling you how old I am. Suffice it to say I am still 40ISH. My sweet husband baked me a homemade cake. He tried his best. But it was a chocolate cake with strawberry icing and he decorated it with raisins and chopped walnuts. Everything was good...except the raisins lol. That was a little weird, but when you love someone and they make such a loving effort, you smile and say how wonderful it is. Regardless of what it is. He also gave me a bottle of rose oil infused witch hazel, a small dog whatnot, and he sat and watched a movie with me while we had burgers from a take out place that delivers. All in all, it was a very nice birthday!
Housework has suffered this week I am afraid. I've let the ball drop as I have been so focused on learning the Ins and Outs of creating a Shop here on WDC. Whew, that has been quite an undertaking! I think, however, once the initial work is done and it is all set up, it will be less demanding and I can get back to writing.
Before things get to bad or overwhelming, I've got to get back to my daily house blessing schedule. I know my whole house seems to be happier and more content when I adhere to a schedule. I am happier as well.
My sleep schedule went all to oblivion the past few weeks. It is amazing that we can communicate with people literally all over the world but what is not so wonderful is the time differences. First and foremost above anything else I do, comes my work for the Lord. I met a young man a few weeks ago via facebook. He is only 25 and lives in Iraq. He has a wife and a small 18 month old baby girl. He is the sweetest boy! And yes, to ME, he is a BOY. We have talked nearly every day. He has very, very recently given his heart to Jesus and become a Christian. Bare in mind, he is in a Christian hostile country. His wife, parents and family are Muslim. His English is rough and while I am teaching him English, I am also teaching him the Bible. It is very, very slow! It took me almost a week, but I DID find an online Kurdish Bible.
He is terrified when he reads it. He reads at night when his wife is a sleep or when he can be home alone. He is fearful someone will find his online Bible and understand it, because it is in his language. However, his hunger and thirst for GOD overcomes his fear and he is learning quickly!! He is so full of questions. He has started talking to my husband as well and it is good. He NEEDS Christian men to talk to! The only times we get to talk to him is a 2-5AM our time...so staying up nights to talk to him and then trying to get things done here during the day is a bit rough. I've been sleeping from about 6 or 7 AM and waking about 1pm in the afternoon.
No matter what inconvenience I may run into, this young man's spiritual life is above all else the most important. I fervently pray God will send him a good, dependable Christian man there in his city, that he can talk to and learn from. In a short time, he has begun calling me his Mom and he calls my Husband Dad. He asks me over and over, if his family hate him, will I ever leave him? It wenches my heart and I wish I could assure him everything will be OK. But, in a very real reality, it might not be all ok. He really does face a very real danger if those close to him find out his secret. This occupies a great deal of my thoughts and attention.
** Image ID #1058005 Unavailable ** Let the Son shine in your life.
|Yesterday, it finally came! My new desktop computer that runs on Windows! I am very excited that I can now access all my old files that were saved on a thumb drive. Those files included 11 chapters of a book I've been writing and much of the research and maps. Whew! I had been so upset and disappointed thinking these files were gone forever.
I spent a good deal of time getting familiar with the new computer and getting all the settings adjusted to my preferences. Oh and I do so love my keyboard! Call me crazy, but the sound of the clickity-clack of my typing is not only motivational but soothing to me. My laptop's keyboard was silent. Now, I at least SOUND productive even if I'm just typing random posts and not actually doing "real" work.
Not having access to my files for nearly five months has actually proven to be a good thing. Because I had to re-read the entire story to re-familiarize myself with what I'd written and some of the mistakes I caught were because I hadn't read it in so very long. I was able to pick up on portions that simply did not make sense, or noted places where I really need to go back and clarify and expand on. I'm all fired up and ready to get back to business!
Some of my research has been lost, and I'll have to refresh some of it. Also, since I've learned so much in the last few months while being part of WDC, I can see I really need to backtrack a bit and spent some time better developing my characters and working on an outline. I've noticed I have a subplot going and have no idea where it's supposed to go! I really must get that fixed.
In other "news", Vacation Bible school will kick off tomorrow and I am very excited! I have really been looking forward to getting this going and can't wait to get to know the members of the group better. If it goes well, and everyone seems to enjoy themselves, I'm thinking I might offer to start a bi-monthly or maybe even weekly group that can focus on our spiritual lives. But, let's see first how this next week goes!
Fundraising for the fall competition is going very well and I believe it won't be long before we hit our 2 million mark. The goal is 4 million, so we are nearly HALF way to our big goal! YAY!! Collaborations for the competition are going well and everyone I've described the competition to has been very enthusiastic and supportive. I have found only ONE judge so far to commit to the event. That leaves me with four other judges to find!
I have discovered something very recently about myself. I have never been one to like fantasy stories. It just never held my attention for very long, because so much of it is just so far fetched and hard to even fathom. However, to my surprise, I've met two very talented writers and I have become hooked on their fantasy tales. I have to say, that is a remarkable feat for any writer. To engage someone's attention and hook them into a story that is of a genre they don't even like. I have to admit, tho, I am completely hooked and captivated by the two stories they are telling.
|It is with a great deal of frustration and exasperation that I am writing this entry. With every step forward, I feel like I am falling two or even three steps behind. The art of juggling is not something I have yet mastered.
I get one aspect of my life on the right track, heading in the direction I want it to go and at the speed I desire, when another aspect of my life decides to derail and well, my sister once told me when we were growing up, I am as subtle as a train wreck.
We started making wonderful strides in our Fly Lady routine and I think my husband makes a darn good Fly Man, but when I am focusing my attention on that, then it seems like my writing and other areas in my life go all wonky and off-kilter.
Then, I started making good progress on my writing, even bit the bullet and bought a new (refurbished) computer that runs on WINDOWS! I am so fed up with this worthless Chromebook! Never again will I ever buy anything run on Chromebook. ONCE my computer gets here, I'll take a few days to transfer what I can to the new unit, which is a desktop, not a laptop. Call me crazy, but the laptop is to quiet. I LIKE to hear the clickity-clack of my keyboard as I type. My husband is thrilled because he will get my laptop. All he will do is probably play video games or watch movies on it. I plan to spend a good amount of time getting back on the writing track.
This week I plan to get everything ironed out for Vacation Bible School, which I'm hoping will be very enjoyable. I have a PC party to focus on, which will be held June 1st, a huge contest to prepare for coming in August/September. I am endeavoring to teach English to a person I met online. Here lately, my husband has been wanting me to watch more movies with him. Which is great, but he gets annoyed if I DO anything while watching lol. I need to spend more time with him
This entry is a bit of rambling really. If anyone reads it, I apologize for sounding somewhat flaky.
|It is hard to believe 8 days have already passed since my last entry! Gosh, I'm not very good at this whole daily journaling thing. I shall make a goal to be more consistent with my blog entries.
Have you ever gotten a inspiration from a most unlikely source? I was approached via Facebook by what was most likely a scammer and indeed, today, he revealed what I suspect is the tag line. He told me he is a driller on an oil rig and we have had some very interesting chats about the subject. I managed to catch him in a few lies but did not let him catch on that I had caught on. I just love to give them enough rope to hang themselves! Amongst all the BS and bad catch lines, he did come up with a few not bad ideas for writing projects.
One project would be to research and write about ghost rigs. I've discovered nearly 1,000 or more deaths occur on oil rigs yearly, and many from falls or explosions. Not all hit the headlines, nor get any media attention. Where sudden and somewhat violent death occur, so do spirits with unfinished business, pissed off spirits with a score to settle, or a haunting of some kind. A book on these occurrences would be fun, interesting and probably profitable, given the consumers who love this type of thing.
Secondly is a close look at the astonishingly large number of abandoned and dead oil wells that scatter across America. Now, many are properly filled in after they dry up or the company moves on. However, close to over a million wells are not properly filled in. These wells leak hazardous, combustible gasses, lead to a possible cave in's and letch chemicals into the water and contaminate the soil in surrounding areas. These improperly covered wells then get roadways, houses, commercial buildings, and yes, even schools and hospitals built over them. A book looking into these and the effects they have on the environment and society, what causes them to be abandoned and just, the stories of these wells might also make for some fascinating reading to a good number of people. NOT a book that zeros blame on big oil companies, but tells the more human side of these wells and gives practical, interesting stories.
Hand in hand with abandoned oil rigs are the oil rig ghost towns that litter across America as well. Like the railroad, mining, and other such jobs, the workers formed communities that often led to the birth of a town which all centered around the growth and success of an oil well. When the oil rig dried up or was abandoned, jobs were lost and the people had no choice but to move on and settle elsewhere. Perhaps there are some interesting untold stories in relation to these ghost towns that might make good fodder for a book people would be interested in reading. Maybe not as interesting as the first two, but still, not a really bad idea.
Fourth do you have any idea of the interesting things found when drilling? I have had multiple generations of men in my family go into the oil rig work. I remember as a kid, my older brother would come back from a drilling assignment and he always brought back pretty rocks, minerals, semi-precious gems, old coins, fossils, and even petrified wood pieces all found while he was on the job drilling. I do think that might also be a good idea not for a book really, but for a few articles at least! Wouldn't it be interesting if someone organized a show of some kind for oil workers to display and possibly sell the goodies they've found? What stories could be gleaned from something like that? I would think, plenty!
And let us not forget the industrial evolution side of things. The first oil-producing well in America was in 1895 (I think, I have it in my notes, but can't get to my notes while typing this entry) in PA. From then till present the way oil rigs are drilled and how oil reserves are located has changed immensely! A book that focuses on the technology aspect of the industry and its impact on American oil would be interesting. I believe that too could be made into an interesting book of some kind. I would, however, think someone a bit more knowledgable with engineering and mechanics would be better off writing about this than I would.
Fifth but probably not finally, if you look at images on Google there are some amazing, breathtaking photos of oil rigs...both on land and offshore. I think a coffee table style book with original photography of American oil rigs would be popular. Someone who could travel around and take photos of the rigs and get interesting facts and history about it to add on the captions would be a very nice, interesting book I think!
So, there you have what's been flooding my mind in the last few days. I've really NO idea where or how to get started. I"ve been reading up as much info as I can on the whole industry. I've placed ads in hot spots asking for Roughnecks to tell me their stories concerning ghosts, hauntings, and odd things that happen on rigs. The whole ghost rigs idea has captured my interest for the moment. To date, I've had just ONE person respond to my ads. A man named Todd from the Beaumont, TX area. Says he worked on rigs and ships most of his life. I'm wondering what questions to ask. My days of taking journalism and broadcast journalism are years gone by lol and I am pretty rusty!
I have wondered if perhaps I should look and see about finding a partner that has an interest in this subject and we could work together on these projects? Right now, I have tons and tons of questions and no real answers! How on earth do I even organize something like this?
|Seems like I blink and suddenly it has been DAYS since my last entry! Where does all that time go? It has been a three-ring circus for the last few days for me.
Wrapped up the Epic Battle of the Pens Writing Competition 2020! Whew! What a blast that was!! It was a long, 4-week competition but wow, it was amazing. There were so many wonderful, creative writers who submitted Epic stories! I really can't wait to do it again, maybe next year?
Making strides in Fly Lady mission. The last two weeks, my husband and I have fallen into a routine that I just love so much. We wake up and sit at our kitchen table and have coffee together. Sometimes we eat a little something, but not always. We have started discussing our daily goals and what do we want to accomplish for that day? By the time we clean up and head our separate ways, we both have a game plan. I know what he is going to work on, and he knows what I'll be working on. This way, we can encourage and push one another so we can both feel we have accomplished the things we set out to do. We hold each other accountable and can offer each other help when it's needed. So far, this is working out great and my house is getting blessed far more than I ever could have hoped for.
VBS! I have been getting seven days of Adult Vacation Bible School planned and organized. I have the basics down, but still have some work to do as far as getting prizes together, working on challenges, and thinking of how to kick off the campfire thing I want to do. My goal is to have people start signing up at least by the third week of May. I want to give people at least two weeks to decide and sign up.
Fundraising efforts. I have been putting together a fundraiser I'm hoping to also kick-off either the last week of May or first week of June. This will be the first in probably two or three fundraising events to help pay the cost of a MAJOR Competition I'm collaborating on for the month of September!
All these things are on my plate plus, let us not forget I've got to get some personal writing done on my own writing projects! I really need to sit down and get myself organized on that front.
|My husband has tried unsuccessfully to go into hiding. My dogs duck and go the other way when they see me coming. Past two days I've been armed with a broom, mop bucket, and array of cleaning products. My spring cleaning is behind schedule. Normally I tackle this around the first of March but have been rather sidetracked.
Yesterday, much to my Husband's dismay, he found himself stringing a new laundry line outside, bleaching every wastebasket and sitting them out into the sun, taking our pillows and mattresses and spaying them down with Lysol, laying them out in the sun as well.
The house we live in is dark and every wall in the house is covered in that dark wood paneling. Every single picture and wall hanging came down and got a good wipe down. Then, I used Mop & Glow and a special cloth mop I reserve only for this job and polished every wall in my house. Tons of cobwebs came down! While I did the walls, my husband helped me by scrubbing the baseboards and doorframes.
Plastic came off the windows, windows got washed inside and out!
TODAY, we picked up where we left off. To keep the husband from mutiny or striking...I baked a deep dish peach cobbler with pecans and had it cooling on the oven draped with a towel. During our first coffee break mid-morning, we had a piece with our coffee. THAT got him looking forward to his next plate full lol.
All four dogs got baths and flea dipped. The cats got a wet wipe bath with special no-rinse cat shampoo and sprinkled with flea powders. None of my animals are in much of a mood to talk to me or look at me. I'm being given the silent treatment. Every curtain has been taken down and washed and hung up outside. During winter months, I do not heat my kitchen, dining room, bathroom, spare room, or hallway so blankets are hung in the doorways to keep the heat in the rooms I DO heat. All those blankets have been taken down, washed, and hung out. When they come in, they will be packed away for next year.
No, it's not always convenient or fun sitting on an icy cold toilet or standing in the kitchen with a jacket to cook with, BUT... my highest electric bill this last winter was $186. dollars. Compared to last year when we had a heating bill hit nearly $300! It was well worth a little nip of cold here and there! I DID have a small heater for the bathroom when we would take our showers, I'm not totally crazy!
I have not had the heart to tell my husband that tomorrow I plan to clean and organize ALL the closets and cabinets. I'm fully prepared tho with my bribe. Er, I mean, um, special reward dinner for helping me. I'm going to make one of his favorite meals. Roasted pork tenderloin with steamed buttered/herb radishes, turnip greens, and a fresh pan of cornbread. I'll even have a batch of blonde brownies for him. See, hard work does pay off around here!
As for me, I also plan to reward myself for getting all this done. I've been craving cottage cheese with raw radishes and bacon bits. I know, its a very odd combo, but something about it just makes me crave it at times.
Oh yes, and I dug out my Sun Tea jar! Hopefully, by Mid May it will be hot enough outside I can start making yummy jugs of sun tea.