Forget the New Year–Carpe Bibliotheca!

Christmas Ornament by Aaron Burden from stocksnap.ioIt never bodes well when you disrobe in the kitchen—while making breakfast—because there’s an ant in your pants. Yes, I literally had ant(s) in my pants. It was a fire ant, but the kind that hurts just enough to make you angry for about an hour, not one of the horrible ones. But really, it’s been that kind of week. That’s why this week’s blog post will be light, because of the [cue scary music] Holiday Convergence.

I’m sure you’ve all experienced those times, when things come together in your life to make a perfect storm of high stress and low productivity. In fact, I’m sure many of you are experiencing it right now. The holidays are actually the most minor element of our convergence this year. The two biggest contributors are the house and the dogs. I know, those are perennially the two biggest culprits (See Progress Report, and The Dangers of a Dingbat Dog), but our dwelling and four-legged companions are in rare form.

The dogs formerly known as stray started their heartworm treatment last week. That means they have to stay quiet—low exercise, no excitement—for a month, until they get the next two injections and have to remain quiet for another month. [This is when I remind you to please give your dogs heartworm preventive, so you don’t have to worry about them keeling over with a worm embolism because they’re happy to see you.] With the exception of the first day or two after the treatment when he seemed at death’s door, Dingbat Dog does not do quiet well, and I’m afraid he’ll be the death of us all. With less exercise, Dingbat still being manfully intact (until after the treatments; then he’ll be snipped so fast he won’t know what hit him), and #3 (the dog who is our rock) being weakened by the treatment, we seem to have returned to the Bad Old Days of dog fights waiting to happen. Except when they’re not waiting to happen because we’re breaking them up. We’ve gradually returned to our habit of announcing our movements (“I’m going to the bathroom now”) so the other human knows that he or she is the only remaining Peacekeeper. By the way, peacekeeping tip: be careful if you use Pill Pockets to administer doggie medication, lest you end up with a melee and one dog with all the drugs. I guess that’s appropriate since Pill Pockets are obviously doggie crack. I don’t know what’s in them, but it incites a couple hundred pounds of canine frenzy in our tiny kitchen.

Stacked books by Glen Noble from stocksnap.ioOn top of that, right now our house is a disaster area. If you follow my blog regularly, this probably won’t come as a shock, but my husband and I are Readers. We love books, and we hate to part with them. As a result of some of our recent work on the house, there are stacks (and banker’s boxes) of books ringing our bedroom. Other stuff, too, but mostly books. If we added bundled newspapers and a few more cats (joking–please God, no more animals), we could have our own reality TV show, Hawaiian Hoarders.

Yesterday, I took a day off to try to start getting our house (and lives) back in order. In Hilo, known far and wide as a hopping metropolitan shopping mecca, I clapped my hands in the entryway of every furniture store and said, “Bookcases! Bring me bookcases!” Not exactly, but I did buy a couple that will hopefully be in place and loaded down by the end of the weekend, which is a start. (Told you—book hoarders.) And I began cleaning and shifting things and visualizing how to make my work station a place that won’t turn me into a Hobbit. (Except the hairy feet; if I get hairy feet, I don’t think I can blame that on bad ergonomics.) It felt good, getting that start now. After all, why wait two weeks for the New Year to do whatever it takes to make your life better?

So if you see a woman with her nose to the steering wheel in a hybrid today, don’t assume it’s because she’s vertically challenged (or only because she’s vertically challenged). Maybe she’s carrying a tool in the back (aka bookcase) that will help her change her life for the better. Maybe you should be inspired by her, instead of wondering if her feet touch the floor sitting on her dining chair (barely) or offering her your optometrist’s business card. Maybe you should join her and say, Carpe bibliotheca!

[The internet assures me that bibliotheca is one Latin translation of bookcase, and we know the internet is never wrong.]

[Ornament by Aaron Burden and Stacked books by Glen Noble, both from]