Mess of My Own Making

Blooms on a Bleak and Rainy Day: Gloxinia
Gloxinia 2013
Blooms on a Bleak and Rainy Day: Cyclamen
Cyclamen 2013

I’ve been sitting here this morning working away at the source edits in my genealogy database. As I exclaimed in amazement, “what a mess”, Attila smiled and commented, “a mess of your own making”. Exactly!

I forgive myself though.

For years I had little access to primary sources, sometimes just an hour or so a week. If I had stopped to property format sources at that time, I would not have gotten very far with my project. That is why I jotted down the details to be dealt with later. Now it is later, at least a decade after the original research was conducted. It is painfully slow and tedious work to format and create additional sources for each and every bit of data collected. I am amazed at the “mess”, but also at the accuracy and thoroughness of my own notes, from which I can create complete and proper sources for every bit of information on over 72000 individuals in the database. I feel I am allowed to complain a little bit about the tedious and meticulous catching up that needs doing now.

Right now I am working through the primary sources of details about the life of my GGG Grandmother Mary Ann, who was born in 1798 in Scotland. I can almost feel her peeking over my shoulder, nudging me, and advising, “you’ve forgotten something over here”, and “you really should include that detail over there”.

I try not to project personality traits onto my GGG Grandmother, as I never knew her in life. I’ve only lived with the consequences of her life choices, and inherited some of her innate capabilities. The details of how all of this has played out over time and history will be something for us to talk about in the great hereafter. Something to look forward to.

After sitting for a few hours, I am on my feet and thinking about furniture. We now have two table type surfaces that can move anywhere, they are on casters. One is a low table, which serves as a coffee table, a foot rest and as an occasional project table. The other is a tall kitchen cart with open shelves below. It usually sits in the kitchen, but I’ve been clearing off its table top surface and wheeling it around the living room, my laptop perched on top. It is just the right height to stand and work on the laptop. I can wheel the laptop into the kitchen when I want a recipe handy. When I am done for the day, I wheel it right back to its designated spot in the kitchen, to serve time as counter space.

I spend a lot of time on the computer, working on my projects and poking around the Internet. It is very easy to lose the track of time when sitting and working on the computer; only to come up for air after hours and hours, bleary eyed and stiff. Standing however, works wonders for keeping a person interactive with the surrounding environment. While standing I seldom work for more than twenty or thirty minutes without walking away from the screen and keyboard. Because the desktop computer is setup as a standing workstation, and the laptop can rove around the room with me, catching the breeze from an open window in warm weather, seeking out the wood heater in the winter. Sitting becomes the position of a welcome break, rather than the position of prolonged inactivity.

And I can see more out the windows when I am standing, which in itself makes standing preferable.

It is raining like a prayer, begging for the white world’s retreat.

Worldly Distractions


3 °C
Condition: Light Rain
Pressure: 100.2 kPa
Visibility: 15 km
Temperature: 3.3°C
Dewpoint: 1.5°C
Humidity: 88 %
Wind: SSE 13 km/h


“Voices that loud are always meant to bully. Do not be bullied. Acts of bravery don’t always take place on battlefields. They can take place in your heart, when you have the courage to honor your character, your intellect, your inclinations, and, yes your soul by listening to its clean, clear voice of direction instead of following the muddied messages of a timid world.”
Anna Quindlen

Easy on the Ears

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Raining like a prayer…yes, I look out the window when it’s raining and think of mother nature blessing the world once again. For us, here in dry, sere Southern California, rain is truly a prayer blessing. As Meister Eckhard once wrote, “If in prayer all you ever say is ‘thank you’, it will be enough.”