Monday, January 19, 2009

Virtue Projects

Kids: at the movies (thanks to their rockstar auntie)

Hub: on a run

Virtuous Projects: begun, but not completable without Hub

ERGO, time for lemon meringue pie. Mmmmm.

In related news, guess what's on the list so far for this week? Two things: butter, and choc. chips. Someone must be doing a lot of baking.

Also, I'm THIRSTY.

It's been warm all week, so I've been thinking about one of my favorite subjects: gardening. This thinking involves lots of doodled plans about how to carve up our boxy backyard into stunning and daringly artistic perennial borders. There are a lot of pieces of paper lying about with things like "mid-zone: rudbeckia/ daisies" and "grasses--yucca--no water," plus strings of circles and squares and scratchy pompoms. Even when I look at these paper scraps they look like clutter, but when I made them I felt the best combination of absorbed and productive. In the flow. And so I can't bring myself to throw them out, even though the chances of my using these as, say, a shopping list in five months when the rudbeckia/ daisies could actually be bought--or even better, as a blueprint, for when they come home--well, let's just say that's about as likely as me buying enough of any one plant to make this perennial bed look, you know, like a perennial bed. And not just a random assortment of plants wishing they could go back to the orphanage and get adopted by somebody else.

Also, on really fine days like today, I spend a lot of time moving strings of rocks around the backyard, to indicate the borders of my potential flower beds. Right now I have one loop extending around the dripline of our big blue spruce, and another stretching from the corner of our "shed" (it has no roof) to the brick path that goes along the side of the house. (Me, about the path: ooh! let's soften the edges with some decorative bunchgrass, and get some color going right along here with some scarlet gilia--Hub (voice dripping with his I-hate-the-people-we-bought-this-from tone): we need to redo that thing. Me: siiigh. It's fine.)

HOWEVER, today I have something more important to do: insulate. Yep, that's Virtuous Project #1. Lay fiberglass insulation down in the attic.
  • Long-needed home improvement that will increase the comfort and value of the house: 5 points
  • Difficulty of said project in low-to-medium range: 6 points
  • Will clear garage of several bulky supply items that have been clogging it for MONTHS: 10 points
  • Will make me feel like we are closer to having a usable master bathroom even though project has NOTHING WHATSOEVER to do with that bathroom, or any other bathroom: 5 points
  • Will make me feel like this gorgeous, can't-be-indoors-let-alone-cooped-up-in-the-dusty,-toxic-attic-crawlspace has been well spent: 10 points
Virtue points: 36, plus 10 bonus points for making our house more carbon-friendly. Someday. When we finish all of the insulating. Shut up. Total: 46

Other VPs include:
  1. painting the four strips of 8-foot molding we have leaning against the wall in our (unfinished) master bath (virtue rating 12)
  2. Nailing pieces of snowmelt-damaged drywall to the wall before they become further ruined (virtue rating 28)
  3. Paging through Pottery Barn catalogs to come up with a classy, timeless design for the master bath alcove tiles (virtue rating 3, and that's pushing it)
  4. Making dinner (virtue rating 5. Also: BORING)
  5. Finishing the laundry for the weekend, so I don't have to use my writing time tomorrow to fold and put away (virtue rating 4)
  6. Straightening the whole dang house (virtue rating -5, because I should be MAKING THE KIDS do it)

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