Weekend Coffee Share: Let’s Catch Up

If we were having coffee, I’d begin by telling you how much I’ve missed you.  The past couple of weeks have been busy and and blogging has been the last thing on my mind.  For the past few days, I my body has been fighting off a cold.  I’ve been storing away post ideas, but haven’t had the energy to write them yet.

If we were having coffee, I’d tell you that I got to see a fantastic production of Sense & Sensibility at the Guthrie Theater in Minneapolis a few weeks ago.  Although I’ve read all her works multiple times, seen all the adaptations, and even visited Jane Austen’s house in England, S&S is the only one of her works that I had the opportunity to actually study while in college.  Because of what I gleaned in class, Elinor Dashwood has become one of my favorite Austen heroines. Continue reading

Weekend Coffee Share: Overstimulation Hits

If we were having coffee, we’d be taking it to-go because the weather has been far too beautiful to spend the day cooped up in a coffee shop.  We’d be strolling on a path through the woods, going out of our way as we talked to step on particularly crunchy leaves.  The fall colors are turning and we’d be lost in a sea of red and orange and gold.  Isn’t it crazy how fast this fall is going by?  It’s already October!

If we were having coffee, I’d tell you that I’ve been seriously overstimulated the past few days.  I think part of the problem is that I’ve been spending too much time in fantasy worlds.  On work days, I spend two hours in the car listening to audiobooks.  At home, I either read or watch TV.  Because I work in a library, I’m constantly figuring out what world to enter next.  (It’s gotten to the point where I have at least one book coming via interlibrary delivery every week for the next three months.) Continue reading

Weekend Coffee Share: Things Are About to Get Busy

If we were having coffee, I’d start out by saying that it’s good to be back!  I missed out on last week’s coffee share on account of being out of town.  How have things been since we last spoke?

It’s strange to think that summer is over.  As it always does, it went by so quickly!  I’m glad, though.  September is here and with it comes cool mornings and golden sunsets.  Sweater weather is right around the corner and I couldn’t be happier. Continue reading

Weekend Coffee Share: Strawberries, Anyone?

If we were having coffee, I’d probably be thanking you for swinging by the coffee shop and picking something up for me on your way here.  You’ll find me at my family’s farm, way out in the back fields.  It’s strawberry season, which means I work on weekends.  Don’t worry about getting lost–there are maps located in the black mailbox fixed to the orchard sign to pick up as you drive in.  When you get to the patch, you will most likely find me under the canopy greeting customers and handling check-out. Continue reading

Weekend Coffee Share: It’s Not All Rainbows and Sunshine

If we were having coffee, I’d tell you that it hasn’t been the best of weeks.  Nothing horrible has happened… things could definitely be worse.  But they certainly could be better.

If we were having coffee, you would know that two out of the past five days have been rainy.  I love, love, love rainy days… there are few better things than curling up in a lumpy sweater and reading a good book.  When you work on a farm, though, rain gets in the way.  We were sent home early twice this week because it was simply too wet to do any of the field work that badly needs to get done. Although the extra free time gave me the chance to catch up on much needed around-the-house tasks, I need the pay. Continue reading

Sometimes, You Have a Bad Day (Writing 101, Day 14)

It was an all-around off day.  Let me explain.

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Around 2 AM, I crawled out of bed to grab a drink of water.  I’m usually able to navigate back through the dark rooms to my bed with no problems whatsoever.  Apparently, I was more asleep than awake though because as I made a dive for my bed, I discovered that my aim was off by two feet.  Instead of rolling up in a cozy blanket burrito, I found myself launching towards the foot of the bed, ricocheting off, and banging my side painfully on the corner of my desk.  Glad that my brothers weren’t around to laugh, I crawled back under the covers clutching my hip.

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This morning at 7:00 AM, my alarm went off with the clanging of church bells.  I silenced it immediately, wanting to soak in the hazy bleariness of drifting between being asleep and being awake.  I could still feel an ache in my side from the night’s mishap, but ignored the dull pain.  After several minutes of rolling around and cuddling stuffed animals, I pushed myself to a sitting position… only to bang my elbow painfully on the way.  Dang it.  Not again.

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At work, everyone was crabby.  Mom was being nitpicky about sorting apples, which royally pissed my older brother off.  She told the lady who works in the store to stay home, leaving me to run things all morning.  It rained for hours, which meant business was slow.  It also meant that we couldn’t pick apples, leaving us another day behind schedule.  Dad putzed from one task to the next, cursing under his breath because any task, no matter how small, seems to eat up more time than it should.  I tried to sing the “Always Look on the Bright Side of Life” song from Monty Python to cheer him up, but it kind of backfired.

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It’s the little things, sometimes, that break down a day.  Our kittens recently started living on our front steps and made the place a giant litter box.  Stepping out the door is now a smelly experience.  One of the leaders of an organization Mom is involved with handed in her two-weeks notice, leaving lots of big decisions to make in a short amount of time.  The floor needs to be swept for the third time today.  An employee has a cold, but insists on working.  My little brother is coming home from college tomorrow and someone has to pick him up.  The packing line is clogged and must be dismantled and scrubbed before we can clean any more apples.  The dishes haven’t been washed.

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It’s amazing how irritability builds and spreads to everyone.  I haven’t been infected too badly yet.  I plan to lie low, stay out of the way, and flashback to the middle school days with the following song:

Sometimes, you have a bad day.  But things could always be worse.

This post is inspired by an assignment for the Blogging University class Writing 101: Finding Everyday Inspiration.

Weekend Coffee Share: Goodbye Socially-Awkward Hermit Amelia

If we were having coffee, we would be meeting at a local coffee shop because I need to get out of my house.  You’d enter the shop, order a drink of choice, and then would find me huddled over a table with my head in my arms. It’s been that kind of week.  A mug of English Breakfast tea would sit steaming in front of me, but I wouldn’t touch it until you sat down.

If we were having coffee, I’d tell you about work.  At any place of employment, there are all kinds of little behind-the-scenes things that need doing before and after hours. When you live at the place you work, it becomes your task to work extra and get those things done. I put in three ten-hour days in a row. On Friday night, if you drove by our orchard around seven-thirty, you probably would have seen me on a lawn mower cleaning everything up before the weekend crowds hit.

Since I basically work all the time, I keep forgetting to eat… which is something new for me. I’ll go for six hours at a time with only an apple to get me by. Lunches are a hurried dash of grabbing whatever is fastest (usually yogurt, salad, and an apple) and getting back to work. The other day, I went over to a friend’s house for a bonfire (after I finished mowing) and my first words to her were, “Do you have any meat?” She didn’t, so I settled for almonds instead.

Sundays are my only days off and I am determined (after cleaning the house and getting on top of my blog posts for the week) to lie on the couch reading fun books and watching movies. It’s going to be glorious.

If we were having coffee, I’d tell you that I have written more in the last week than I have since college ended. I love it! Writing 101 has been challenging, but not in the ways I expected. The hardest part is finding time in the day to sit down and write. I I’ve been squeezing time in the morning for most of my posts, although occasionally they have to wait until later in the evening. All the assignments have been fantastic so far. Each one is simple, to the point, and offers a source of inspiration. Every day brings something different.

Since starting this course, the posts I’ve written have gotten at the heart of what I’ve always wanted Keep Your Feet to be about. It’s just taken a year and a half on this site, but I’m starting to find my voice here. Each post offers different pieces of myself as I transition into adulthood—working through why I write, making a list of things I love about living at my parent’s house, discussing the insecurities and perks of my nonexistent love life, random musings about Thoreau, and what it means to learn. I’m very proud of the work I’ve accomplished this week and, if you’ve take time to read it, I’m extremely thankful.  I’m eager to get started on this week’s assignments!

As part of Writing 101, I’ve also been working on engaging with other bloggers.  I’ve loved reading everyone’s assignments and finding new sites to follow!

If we were having coffee, I’d tell you about all the plans I’ve been making. Socially awkward hermit Amelia is a thing of the past (for now, at least). In the past week, I’ve had movie nights at two people’s houses and attended a bonfire. Tomorrow night, I’m meeting a friend for dinner. Next weekend, I’m going to the Minnesota Renaissance Festival with a friend one day and attending a concert at a club in Minneapolis the next. I’ve also stolen the Fall Arts Preview of the newspaper and hope to make a list of all the things I want to see and o in the upcoming months. I know all of this probably doesn’t mean much to you, but I’m really looking forward to spending quality time with friends and doing things that fill me up. Plays, concerts, art galleries… I want to soak in as much as I can.

During this time of business, I’m going to have to be extra careful about fitting in introvert time so I don’t become a raging monster and get crabby with everyone.

With all the things on my schedule these days, our coffee conversations are about to get more interesting.

I’ve done enough talking… it’s your turn!  What do you have to share over coffee?

This post is part of the Weekend Coffee Share link-up at Part Time Monster

Pleasant Valley Thursday: Inaugural

Working on the farm was the first job I ever had.  Imagine little thirteen-year-old Amelia in a baggy t-shirt, athletic shorts coated from head to toe with a layer of dirt…  you get a pretty accurate picture of my formative teen summers.

Now that I’ve graduated college, I’m at home working, once more, for my dad at our family’s apple orchard and pick-your-own strawberry patch.  It’s not the most glamorous thing in the world.  In fact, most of the work is far below my education level.  But work is work and I’m happy to do it.

Every Thursday, I’ll be writing about my on-the-job experiences.  Starting this past Monday, I’ve been working from 8 AM till around 4-5 PM every day.  Before I get into any details, though, please take a moment to watch the following video.  Even if you only watch a few seconds, you’ll get the picture.  A few weeks ago, a guy flew his drone over our property at sunrise and pieced it together.

This is where I get to work every day.  You can’t deny that my home is beautiful.

Jobs this Week:

  • Fill sandbags and haul them to the strawberry fields
  • Read the handbook for the new lawn mower and test drive it
  • Weed newly planted strawberry fields
  • Plant strawberries… Fill in gaps where the planter machine missed

Currently, I’m the only one working.  My younger brother is joining me tomorrow.  The rest of our summer crew will filter in over the next month or so.

Low: I ripped the skin off a couple of my fingers tying sandbags.  It now hurts when I bend some of my fingers.

High: It drizzled all morning and the heavy rain set in the afternoon.  Because all my dad’s indoor jobs had to do with fixing broken machinery, he let me off work at noon!  No mechanical experience, no problem.  I had the whole afternoon to relax and get some around-the-house projects done.

Finally, everything is in bloom and it’s lovely.  I took this photo while mowing yesterday.  Enjoy!