video: sparking joy – space and STUFF

It feels like years since I recorded this video, which happened before everything seemed to go out of control, but I enjoyed filming it and I still think it works.

A few thoughts on moving out, moving in, and dealing with space and all the stuff that inevitably fills it. (also, pre-haircut hair!)

the view from Sunday: in which I am a toxic mess

Friends, I am sick. Stuffed up, drippy, wet, sneezy, sick. It was deceptive at first… I thought it was just good ol’ PMS, but all signs point to cold. Way to ring in the season. What I’m saying is, I’m a mess and my brain is in a bad, spacey place. Bad enough that I started editing the wrong draft… at least I caught myself before I saved it. My skin is also not happy. My whole body is rebelling. No bueno. I’m comforting myself with tea and Zarbee’s and a mad wave of decluttering to clear out the air. And youtube. Lots and lots of youtube.

The piles are getting smaller…
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And only two pieces from the wardrobe… the shirt is a little too worn and just doesn’t fit well anymore, and the skirt just hugs my hips the wrong way. So long.
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Reorganized the last of the TBR books…
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And trimmed one of the houseplants, therefore, new greenery in the bedroom 🙂
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the view from Sunday: plant life

I posted a plant “tour” a few months after I moved into my apartment, and have been meaning to do an update ever since. Some of the plants have relocated, and I recently lost the original jade plant to spider mites, but the others are thriving, happy trees (or so I call them). I may redo this as a video, but today is a bad joint pain day, and I’m just not feeling perky enough for all that.

There’s also a storm brewing, so lighting is just no good.

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misery continues

Last week was pretty rough, and it looks like the misery continues… the reason is twofold:

1) I have bird mites. Long story short, the building across the way was remodeled and all the birds that used to nest in the thatches decided my building was the place to be. This place is haphazard at best when it comes to being air tight. The birds built a nest, the hatchlings department, the bird mites found a way in through the A/C unit. Now I have creepy crawlies all over and I am highly allergic to pesticides. I am trying anything and everything that I have read to get rid of them, and praying to all the gods that something works. I removed the nest, so I’m hoping they will die out when their life cycle runs its course… Now, there is a lot of conflicting information on the interwebs; some sites (the more reputable looking ones) say three weeks, others say I am doomed. I’m hoping the three week one is correct and that some progress is underway.

2) I have (hopefully, had) a fire ant infestation in my bathroom, which explains the itchy welts that have been plaguing me. The mites are annoying, but I haven’t noticed a reaction, just the terrible sensation that they are crawling on me, which makes it very hard to fall asleep (I’m desperate and tired), but the ants are nasty. I think I traced the source to a plant I had in my bathroom. I tossed it and felt terrible for it, but I couldn’t handle anymore bites.

Among all the madness, I decided to take a shower and scrub myself with epsom salt, as the interwebs say you do… I dropped the jar and glass shattered all over my tub. I am scratched up and itchy and hot, because my A/C was doused with stuff and I’m trying to let it soak in, so I’m just waiting to see if I can get a break soon. I really don’t know what to do and an exterminator is pretty much out of the question because of my allergies and my landlords being the spendthrifts they are. I just want a nice, pest-free home again. My wallet is a little lighter after the unexpected spending on potential remedies, but something has to work, right?

If anyone out there reading this has had experience eradicating bird mites, please, share the knowledge!

the view from Sunday: this is how my garden grows

Spring has sprung! And, with it, my greenery! The rains during the last summer and fall seasons nearly drowned my succulents and killed off a good number of them. Only the tiniest of buds remained and my expectations were pretty low for their return. I bought some new pots, changed their location, and took my jade plant in (it’s still in recovery), but it wasn’t until a little over a month ago that they started coming back to life… and, boy, have they ever. I’m hopeful that the changes I made will help them survive the summer rains. *fingers crossed*

I’ve harvested my basil twice since January, and look forward to more pesto in future. That amaryllis finally returned as well; it had a single leaf for over a year. Jade rescues in the center; plus little jadelets, should the parent plants die.

My mother’s offerings… I told her I have no more space for indoor plants, but she keeps bringing them. Money tree and another breed of succulent.

Periwinkle and Vinca, because I’m a proper Cuban girl and know how to make magic with plants.

My prize. She’s a survivor. My mom received the original hen back in the ‘70s.

The Christmas cactus… pushing through for next Christmas. Also inherited from my mother’s garden.

And the butterfly ginger, which is loving its new home under the drain. Needs lots of water, shade, and a happy breeze to keep the leaves from toasting in the heat. The flowers smell like jasmine.

Happy Sunday!

a tour of the hobbit hole (re: my tiny living space)

Or, what happens when I go on a painting and crafting frenzy. Really, apartment therapy and DIY goodness was the goal of my holiday break and I think it was a task well done. Some of you gentle readers may recall last year’s post on moving out and moving in… and all the IKEA fun that ensued. Well, I’m not planning on moving anytime within the foreseeable future, so some decorating and freshening up was in order. My color scheme: Valspar paints in Exaltation, Paramount White, and Brushed Lavender.

This whole project required more paint than I imagined, but that was due to the highly porous nature of my walls, rather than the actual size of the rooms :/ oh well, work with what you can.

It’s small and a bit cluttered (a bit? ha!) but it’s full of comforts, books, and kitty cat love [note: kitty cat rules all. just look at all those cat toys… and by cat toys, I mean random junk he enjoys playing with in the middle of the night].

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Little things everywhere…

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My kitchen counter still needs work, but at least I have a table now and can shift stuff around.

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I’ve been painting stuff I already owned and adding personal touches on the cheap to perk up the decorating, which led to a round of Sharpie-inspired crafting. The & is on the door to my tiny linen closet, while the G hangs outside my bedroom door.

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Don’t mind the off-centeredness of the type in the framed quotes, I’ve never been known for managing straight lines while drawing.

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My writing and reading corners are both in my bedroom (it’s not a short desk, my bed is just ridiculously tall).

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Yes, that is an ancient iPod from many moons ago atop the shelf. I’m cheap and careful with my stuffs.