Daybook Entry – February 11

FOR TODAY – Saturday, 2/11/12

Outside my window. . . dawn is breaking and I hear the birds singing. It’s a rainy, gray, dreary day, but the birds are out! I’d have loved to watch more of the light breaking, but there were dogs to let out, a mess to clean up (which is why they’re locked in the kitchen at night) and of course, the morning ritual of the giving of the treats. That ritual has made a big difference in getting a beagle to come in willingly when I’m trying to get out of the house in the morning.

I am thinking. . . about all the things I need and want to do. Before starting this, I opened up a new page in Evernote and listed out everything I could think of to help clear my mind. I have some things to follow up on at work, ideas for both my blogs, things I need to order this weekend, and some photography equipment to learn.

I am thankful. . . for my husband. He’s still upstairs sleeping, so I have this time to concentrate on my writing. We’ve been going out for breakfast each day before work and I love having quality time with him before the day becomes chaotic. Love is not about flowers on Valentine’s Day. It’s about him making me supper each night, helping clean the house, and encouraging me to write even though there’s a gazillion other things that should be more urgent.

In the kitchen. . . two dirty dogs have gone back to bed in their fragrant dog beds. The beds are too big to run through our washer. We haven’t decided yet if we want to take them to a laundromat or just replace them. Otherwise, the kitchen is clean from last night’s supper and waiting for today’s meals to happen.

I am wearing. . . ratty pajamas. I’ve had them since my daughter was in high school nearly a decade ago. I love them though because they’re warm when the house is cold. I turned up the heat, but it’s still cold here by the windows.

I am creating. . . photographs using special effects filters. One of my blogging friends suggested it. I don’t do it very often. I take pictures to record my life and am not sufficiently interested in spending hours tweaking them. My favorite boy toy does that and he creates truly stunning fine art photography. If I spent several days working on a single picture, I’d never have a record of my life.

I am going. . . to have a few days off next weekend. Monday is a company holiday (President’s Day) and I’m taking off an extra day as well. I’m not sure yet what, if anything, I’ll do. I have a nice stack of books from the library so I might just lay around and read for an entire day. Of course, I might do that this afternoon too!.

I am wondering. . . what else I can remove from my schedule to have time to do the things I want to do. I’ve removed much already, but I still have too little time. We haven’t decided whether to jettison the garden or convert it to something less frustrating than vegetables, such as my herbs. Nothing has grown well or tasted very good, we’ve yet to get consistently good tomatoes from it, and to be honest, it would be less time and money to go to the Farmer’s Market than keep struggling with this.

I am reading. . . The Secret Staircase by Melanie Jackson (A Wendover House Mystery). I can’t remember if this came up on Amazon’s Daily Deal or if it was a recommendation based on my reading. I’m enjoying it quite a bit. It’s written in first person, but Louisa, the main character, does not live in her head – i.e., the word “I” does not figure overly much in the narration. Louisa observes her environment and the people around her as she solves the mystery of her grandmother’s childhood and genealogy.

I am hoping. . . that tax season goes well this year, everyone stays healthy, and we get our work done without a lot of drama or stress.

I am looking forward to. . . doing some exploring as the weather gets nicer. I really enjoyed all the pictures last year from our field trips.

I am learning. . . some new Photoshop skills. The Topaz Labs filters are really cool, but way more powerful than I currently am able to do. I’m also not sure I’m observant enough to see when a filter looks good vs when it looks faked. On the other hand, some of the stuff that comes straight out of my camera looks fake when the colors are so bright and the sharpness so defined. So maybe it doesn’t matter as long as I like it.

Around the house. . . the dog gates from last night are still up, keeping the dogs in the kitchen. The miniature pinscher is still in his crate. On cold days like this, he thinks the term “hibernate” was meant for him. Of course, if the beagle starts barking at our neighbor, just watch that sign on his crate whip from “Leave Me Alone” to “Let Me Out NOW”.

I am pondering. . . whether I want to go out for breakfast by myself. My boy toy is still upstairs sleeping and I’m getting hungry. I could fix some yogurt and granola, but what’s the fun of that?

© 2012 dogear6 llc

A favorite quote for today. . . I just found this one! I’m not sure what book or diary it’s from, but I really liked it:

You must live in the present,
launch yourself on every wave,
find your eternity in each moment.
Henry David Thoreau

One of my favorite things. . . is reading. I could read all the time. I realized years ago that part of our budget for money was shopping at the bookstore each week to see what was new and that my time budget also had to allow for trips to the library.

A few plans for the rest of the week. . . we have reservations for Valentine’s Day at Maggiano’s. In past years, we stayed home and cooked a nice meal rather than go out. The last few years, I made a note of it to get reservations right after New Year’s Day and it’s been nice. Maggiano’s uses their regular menu, so we know we can have a moderately priced meal.

A peek into my workday. . . I usually am up shortly before my alarm. I shower, get dressed, let the dogs out and in (plus the giving of the treats). My favorite boy toy and I leave in separate cars for Cracker Barrel, where we have a nice breakfast together. I go to work and he heads back to his home office. At work, it’s meetings, phone calls, time spent training employees, and administrative things to be done.

The legislatures are back in session around the country, so I’m tracking new tax bills and coordinating with various industry groups to promote or defeat legislation. I enjoy that part of my job, but it takes time away from other things that need to be done. I work out during lunch on most days; if I wait until I get home, I’m usually too tired.

And that’s my day so far on this Saturday, February 11, 2012 (finished after breakfast out with  my favorite boy toy).

Over at A Daily Life is a book review on the history of the Oxford Dictionary, as well as some help manging comments and pingbacks.

My self-portrait was adjusted using different filters in Topaz, including the toy camera and a tint.  The photo below is not adjusted.  It’s my favorite oak tree in the backyard.

Photoshop & Lightroom Spending The Day

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I am a backyard adventurer, philosopher and observer, recording my life in journals and photographs. Visit my blog at

14 Comments Leave a comment

  1. I am continually amazed at how much you accomplish, and how much you are able to write; what a blessing you are to so many. I enjoyed the self portrait; you look just as I remember you. :)

    • Thanks Jane! That’s one of the things the Daybook suggests is attaching your picture. Since I hadn’t posted one for a while, it was overdue.

      My nephew said the same thing when he saw my Facebook picture – asked my hubby if I was ever going to look older!

  2. Great post! Love the Woman’s Daybook idea. I am going to start taking a crack at recording my days using the technique described. What a great way to capture how you were feeling about particular days in your life. I doubt I will be able to do it every day, but if I can do it a few times a month, it will be quite an accomplishment and something I will cherish later in life.

    • Traci – that’s a great idea. I’d suggest doing it the last day of each month – just think how much you’ll enjoy looking back over five years from now. I skipped January and wish I hadn’t. I’m going to get more consistent with it too.

  3. Lovely post peeking into your life, thanks for sharing with us. Enjoy V Day!

    PS Do you work in tax in some way or was it just a reference to managing your own tax affairs? Sorry if I am too nosey…just consider it a query from an interested party who spends more time than she considers healthy dealing with tax issues!

    • Thank you! I do tax work for a living – I’m responsible for my employer’s income tax returns in all the state and local jurisidiction in the U.S. I file returns, handle audits & litigation, do research & planning and generally whatever else is needed.

  4. Reservations, that’s was a smart move for a nice dinner out on V Day. Sounds like you had a leisurely start to your day. Your dog stories are funny. I agree with hibernation when it’s this cold. We got a dusting of snow earlier this evening.

    • I learned that in Omaha. If you didn’t do New Year’s Eve and Valentine’s Day a month ahead, you lost. We used to cook dinner in, but the last few years have gone out instead.

      I did have a wonderful start to my day. I’ve gotten a lot done all day today, which is nice.

      Yeah, we got the snow probably about an hour before you did. It thundered long and hard, then started snowing like crazy.

      I’m glad you liked the dog stories. There’s always seems to be a new one to tell :)

  5. That was a compelling read. I really like the way you put this together. I also think it is really awesome you have breakfast with your husband everyday. You are right about Valentine’s Day- it is not a one day thing, it is an everyday thing.

    • Thanks Derek. Breakfast is cheap to fix at home, but it gives our day such a good start that I think it’s worth what we spend. I work long hours and by the time I’m home at night, we’re both tired and having to work harder to stay pleasant with each other.

      I appreciate your comment about Valentine’s Day. I went on to create a post around that theme for next week. Women can go so hung up on the gifts and doo-dahs that they forget that’s not what the relationship is all about. I’m always disappointed in a woman who gets so hung up on her wedding day that she forgets it’s about the marriage, not the wedding. Not too surprisingly, many of those marriages don’t endure either.

      When my daughter graduated college, a series of blessings (including an unexpected full-ride scholarship) left much of her college funds still available. Her Dad and I told her that she could save the money for a blow-out wedding someday or she could buy a house with it. She said hmmm. . . one day or everyday? It was about the blink of an eye and she decided it would be a house (good girl).

      Thanks – as always – for stopping by and leaving a comment.

  6. It was nice to wake up with you this morning. I also let my hubby sleep in while I do some writing. If I could make a living reading, I would be in heaven. I take an hour bus ride to work, so I can read 2 hours a day now. Love it. I am reading Half Blood Blues by Esi Edugyan, the Giller prize Winner this year. It is very good. Enjoy the rest of your Saturday!

    • I’m so glad you enjoyed it! I’ve stopped posting on the weekends, but I couldn’t resist this one. I’m glad you can read during your commute, but wow – that’s a really bad commute.

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