Deciding on what to do……

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Obviously this entire blogging experience is new to me.

I’m currently soaking up unemployment and I’m about to move. This isn’t some small move; this is one of those life changing moves. I’m currently engaged to be married on December 10, 2011. I’ve been with my fiancé for over 10 years (from here on out I’ll be referring to him as Speed), so it’s long overdue. The catch is we don’t live together. I know it sounds crazy this day and age, but that’s just the way it happened. I’m currently 33 and my Birthday is on May 31, so I’m kind of set in my ways. I live in G-town, TX and will be moving to Out-in-the-middle-of-nowhere, TX; which just so happens to be where my grandparents lived when I was a baby (really…we’re moving to the exact same town they lived in). It’s about 165 miles (Who am I kidding “about”….it IS 165….I had to google it!).

The new place is 10.99 acres, a shop for all of Speed’s toys, and a house that has two fireplaces, two master bedrooms (one of them has the fireplace), two guest bedrooms and two more bathrooms. That’s four bedrooms and four bathrooms; it’s a big house, especially when you consider that we won’t be having kids. Did I mention that Speed is sixteen years older than me and already has an eighteen year-old son?

Even though we have officially acquired the house, the sellers asked to stay for thirty days, which would’ve ended at the end of October, but then they asked for another thirty days so they can have time to sign the papers on their new house (which is only 5 miles away, so technically they’re still our neighbors, and I really don’t want to piss off the first people we meet in this really tiny town). According to the 2010 census the population is 114. I’m gonna need all the friends I can get!

Let me give you a bit of background information. I grew up in kind of a small town. Speed grew up in a different small town. Mine was a bit bigger. He moved with his family to G-town when he was around fourteen, and I followed my parents and moved when I turned nineteen. G-town is a tourist town, and there is plenty of ghetto-ness throughout the city. For both of us it was kind of like moving to the Big City. For the first time it didn’t take me fifteen minutes to drive into town! So in the past fourteen years that I lived here, I’ve gotten used to things being close by. Now when I move I’ll be doing that exact same thing….driving fifteen minutes to get into town. The closest Target it 53 miles away! The Wal-Mart isn’t even a “Super Center” just a regular ol’ Wal-Mart! Lord help me!

So with all this land there comes some things that I’ll be able to do. One of those is to garden. I want to have my own vegetable garden. I know this won’t be easy. I have a friend that does this every year and I listen to her talk about the diseases in the soil, the bugs that are eating her plants, and the woes of trying to grow tomatoes. There will be plenty of trial and error, and I’m ready for it! This won’t be the only task that I’ll be taking on. With this much property we need to have some animals so we can be agricultural exempt from taxes. I’d like to have chickens for the eggs and goats to “mow” the grass, and Speed completely agrees. He also wants to get a few cows, which I’m OK with.

Speed’s grandfather had a ranch, and my grandfather worked on ranch’s (specifically cattle). So this isn’t too farfetched for us to do. But many people have already been asking me what am I going to do?! Well, as with any place you recently move into, the first thing on the list is to unpack and start setting up your home. So for the first time in my life I’ll be trying to mesh two households of furniture with countertop colors already chosen by the original house owner. This will be an exciting/stressful time, and I can’t wait!

Cosmetically there really isn’t much to do to the house but paint the master bedrooms. One is pale pink and mint green (I like pink but not on the walls) and the other bedroom is coral and cream. Which I like the cream color because the rest of the house is like that and it’s neutral. The exterior of the house is brown…..that’s it brown, no white trim, nothing but doo doo brown! It’s depressing and has to go. They painted the shop, the garage, the sheds, the house; everything doo doo brown! UGH!

Fortunately I’m a huge IKEA fan! We’re bringing my couches and chairs that I can easily buy new slip covers for, but I’m going to need to bring some color into the living room. I thought the best way to do that would be with pillows for the couches and curtains for the windows. Then I started thinking about making them myself to save money, and that way I can control the colors and sizes. This process of thinking finally brings me to the reason for this blog.

I purchased a book titled How to Sew a Button and Other Nifty Things Your Grandmother Knew by Erin Bried. In this book there are some awesome how to’s. I’m hoping to tackle each one of these as they come up. Some are easy (how to build a fire), some not so much (how to knit a scarf), some will be beneficial (how to plant a vegetable garden), and some I already know (how to play charades). I’m not going to give myself a timeline to get them all done. It would be nice to get them done in a year, but I’m also going to be planning my own wedding! That’s stressful enough! Also, my unemployment runs out in February, and I’m not sure what’s going to happen after that when it comes to my finances, so I don’t want to put any more extra burdens on me. I want this to be a fun experience.

I will now list the How To’s that are in the book:

Cooking:
How to….
Make Blueberry Pancakes
Roast a Whole Chicken
Make Gravy
Carve a Roasted Bird
Fillet a Fish
Bake Bread
Make a Pie
Make a Smoothie with Fruit or Veggies
Use grease as Flavoring
Hone a Knife
Plan a Week’s Menu

Gardening:
How to….
Plant a Vegetable Garden
Naturally Protect Your Garden from No-Good Insects
Repel Furry Friends from Your Garden
Chase a Snake Out of Your Garden
Compost
Start a Windowsill Herb Garden
Dry Apples
Can Your Own Fruits and Veggies
Make (and Can) Strawberry Jam
Shop at the Farm

Cleaning:
How to….
Properly Fold a Fitted Sheet
Make a Bed
Hand Wash Delicates
Install a Clothesline
Clean an Oven
Properly Hand Wash Dishes
Mop
Kill Mildew
Rid You House of Mice
Spring Clean
Use Vinegar to Clean Almost Anything
Use Baking Soda Around the House

Dressing:
How to….
Sew a Button
Hem Your Fancy Pants
Iron a Shirt
Darn Wool Socks
Knot a Winter Scarf
Make an Apron
Patch a Hole
Remove Most Stains
Shine Your Shoes
Buy Quality Clothing
Pack a Suitcase

Nesting:
How to….
Build a Fire
Knit a Scarf
Make a Crazy Quilt
Hang a Picture
Make a Pillow
Remove Scuffs from Hardwood Floors
Make a Centerpiece
Make Art out of Pressed Flowers
Scent Your Home Without Candles
Unclog a Drain
Unclog a Toilet

Thriving:
How to….
Make a Hot Tea Toddy
Soothe a Minor Burn with a Plant
Ease Your Sneezes
Build a Walking Regimen
Give Yourself a Facial
Remove Makeup
Give Yourself a Manicure (or Pedicure)
Perfect Your Posture
Love Your Body at Any Size
Get a Good Night’s Sleep
Protect Yourself from Danger
Wear Red Lipstick

Loving:
How to….
Swaddle a Newborn Baby
Make a Baby Toy
Read a Bedtime Story
Pack a Lunch
Delegate Chores
Raise a Good Citizen
Tie a Necktie
Be a Strong Partner
Make the Most of a Night In
Heal a Hard Day

Saving:
How to….
Make a Budget
Shop Without Credit
Reconcile Your Checkbook
Save on Energy Costs
Grocery Shop
Negotiate a Better Price
Clip Coupons
Throw Yard Sale
Start a Rainy Day Fund
Share Your Good Fortune (Even When Times Are Tight)
Barter

Joining:
How to….
Enjoy the Folks Next Door
Deal with a Problem in Your Neighborhood
Make Friends
Ask for Help
Start a Book Club
Volunteer
Win an Utterly Silly Argument (Without Saying Much at All)
Speak Your Mind at a Town Hall Meeting
Write a Letter to Your Representative

Entertaining:
How to….
Make Dandelion Wine
Brew Your Own Beer
Mix the Perfect Cocktail
Properly Extend an Invitation
Host a Potluck Dinner Party
Introduce People
Write a Thank-You Note
Play Charades
Sing in Harmony
Play Crazy Eights
Do a Basic Waltz

As you can see this is a very long list. And some How To’s I won’t be able to get done unless the opportunity arises. I want to tackle the How to Compost first; I need to start it now in order for it to be ready in the spring. But the very first thing I’m doing when I get off the computer is How To Rid Your House of Mice, I just so happen to have them where I live now, and they’re driving me crazy!

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About avathegreat

I'm a thirty-something unemployed teacher, who has recently moved out to the middle-of-nowhere and gotten married. My only job now is to find out what to do with the rest of my life and take care of a husband and several dogs on a budget all while trying to keep my sanity! Easy! Right?!

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