A Journey Into Enlightenment (Part II)


Here we are in Tennessee, on our third official sit as a couple (and my fiftieth or so as an individual).  It has been a whirlwind of a fall and we are both looking forward to hunkering down for the winter up on Signal Mountain.

Now that I am finally and fully embracing the wonders of blogging and social media in general, I find that I can be more distracted than ever if I am not careful.  In the past I have had specific job duties, like mixing drinks or selling soaps or entering data…now I am mainly accountable to…me.  Yikes. 

Time to retrain my brain.  Time to walk down a different street!  If I want to make a living online, I need to be super organized and results-driven.  I need goals, and I need to accomplish them.  I can’t simply wait for someone else to tell me what to do, whether it be work related or otherwise.

So, each month I am going to hold myself accountable to not just me, but to all of you as well.  Each month I am going to post a goal (or four).  I know we are almost halfway into November, but I have been working hard on the following and feel the need share now, so here goes:

November Goals:

Blogsville: I am currently working with Lisa Sabin-Wilson (author of WordPress for Dummies) on this blog.  It is being completely restructured in order to be more user friendly and interactive.  You will see the new look this month (can’t wait to show you)!

Other Social Media: You can now find either myself or Caretaking Couple on twitter and Linked In as well as facebook.  I am not sure if I will be adding to or subtracting from this list – I am just going to have fun with each and see where my time is best spent.   Do you have a favorite?  If so, please share.

My Writing: Most of you know that I am taking writing classes and working on a book.  I have eight chapters outlined and three written.  I will finish Chapter Four by the end of the month. How many rough drafts does one woman need to write, anyway?

Health and Fitness:  I am looking into becoming a Beachbody Coach.  There is still a bit of research to do with regards to this.  I am considering Beachbody because I have seen the results in people who are consistent with it, and it is something I can do from anywhere in the US.  And it will hold me accountable!

The goals above are more challenging than I thought they would be but there is nothing else I would rather be doing right now.  Except for maybe going for a bike ride and getting to know the new neighborhood…another benefit of working from “home”.

Thank you for reading this, our 100th blog post here at Caretaking Couple!  As always, I would love to hear from you.  Enlighten me ; ) Just leave a comment on any of my 100 posts between now and December 1 and I will enter your name into a drawing for a special CC gift from Tennessee!


A Journey Into Enlightenment


I have been going through all of my business and personal paperwork in order to get Paula (the new owner of Mountain Girl Organics) whatever I think she may want or need, as well as to continue the process of whittling down in preparation for our next sit (i.e. how will we fit all of it into the 4Runner?). 

While whittling, I found a wrinkled photocopy of a photocopy tucked away in my “Important Papers” file. It was given to me several years ago by someone who knew me well.  I am glad I kept it…

A Journey Into Enlightenment * In Five Short Chapters

Chapter 1:  I walk down a street.  There is a deep hole in the sidewalk.  I fall in – I am lost – I am hopeless – it isn’t my fault – it takes forever to find my way out. 

Chapter 2:  I walk down the same street.  There is a deep hole in the sidewalk.  I pretend I don’t see it.  I fall in again – I can’t believe I’m in the same place.  It still takes a long time to get out.

Chapter 3:  I walk down the same street.  There is a deep hole in the sidewalk.  I see it is there.  I still fall in – it is a habit.  My eyes are open – I know where I am – it is my fault – I get out immediately.

Chapter 4:  I walk down the same street.  There is a deep hole in the sidewalk.  I walk around it.

Chapter 5:  I walk down a different street. 

I have made a lot of progress in the few years since I read this last…even still it is a relevant read, a simple yet effective reminder.  It is time again to make some changes.  Time to walk down a different street. 

OK, we are almost at our next sit (Tennessee)…more about my changes soon! 

Would love to hear from any of you that can relate to this little story – perhaps we can support each other in our changes for the better…

Introducing….Thursday Q & A


I'm ready and waiting...

I love that everywhere we go, we find that people are interested in this lifestyle we have created for ourselves.  Most of the time, questions are asked in person, or via e-mail.  I would love to keep the conversation going here, where more like-minded can participate.

Do you have any questions or comments for us today (whatever day it happens to be) regarding home and pet sitting, travel, writing, or living simply?  How about working from home or the road?  Good!  We’d love to hear them…

Independence Day Weekend (In Pictures)


Annual Friends of the Falmouth Library Book Sale

We're trying to get rid of books, really we are. This was just too damn irresistable.

Haven't been to Betsy's yet...but she is on the list...

Love these old motels - so much character.

My friends parents owned one similar to this when I was a kid, growing up in downtown Ventura, CA

I love Falmouth. I come here almost every day since beginning my yoga classes


A New England Fourth of July

Blame the blur on the Bloody Mary(s)...Quarterdeck Restaurant in Falmouth

Independance Day on the Bay

Happy 4th of July, America!

Stuff. Do You Own It? Or Does It Own You?


While Paul is in England with his Dad, I am going through what was left of our “stuff” after the sale of the Colorado house.  Yikes.  We got rid of most of it, but still.  Too much stuff. 

I went and rented a storage unit the other day so that we could have our stuff out of the homeowners way when they are here for a month this summer.  My goal is to get whatever we have (sans couches, which we will most likely sell) to fit into the 5×10 unit. 

The bulk of our stuff consists of books.  A lot of my books can be checked out at any local library.  A lot of his can not.  So, I have decided to let go of most (not all!) of my books.  I have resisted this for some time but now it feels right.   I am ready. 

Maybe one day Paul and I will embrace the e-book phenomenon.   Not sure on that one.  We are still contemplating i-Tunes, after all.  I do love the idea of being truly mobile…still a book is so much more satisfying to me than a computer screen.

Do you have stuff that is weighing you down?  My goal is to simply live “beneath my means and within my seams”.  If this is a goal for you as well, or if you are already living this way, I would sure love to hear from you…

Cambridge Sit – Week One



I am currently enjoying a two week sit in Cambridge, MA with Cosmo.  It has been a bit like vacation.  Cosmo and I go to the dog park every morning.    

Then, when she is napping, I sneak out for a few hours.  The evenings are spent writing, reading, and walking some more.   

Because I am (mostly) sans Paul, who walks a lot faster than me, I have taken many a picture.  Here are a few of my favorite moments so far…     

MayFair 2010 just happened to fall on my first day out on my own in Cambridge.  I called for a taxi.  This alone would make for an interesting blog post, I thought to myself.  Yes, I was generalizing, or stereotyping or whatever you want to call it.  In my defense, I have taken cabs in Boston before and will leave it at that.   Anyway, the cab showed up minutes later and I was greeted by a pleasant, helpful, and soft spoken man named Doyle.   Doyle dropped me off at Harvard Square and what a great day I had.  Plus, I realized that I could easily walk or take the T home. Thank you for all of your suggestions, Doyle!  You made my day(s) in Cambridge that much better.  

A Perfect Day for MayFair 2010 - Harvard Square

MayFair 2010 - Chalk Art

MayFair 2010 - Legacy Dance Company (GO GIRLS!)

MayFair 2010 - Boston Tap Company (WOW)

MayFair 2010 - Cambridge Youth Dance Program (aka Beautiful Ballerinas)

Walking Past Longfellow's Digs on the way "home"

All of Cambridge is in Bloom...

 The pics below were taken at the dog park at Fresh Pond, where Cosmo and I spend most of our mornings.  These ducklings were only 3 to 4 days old when we happened upon them.  Sweet. 

Ducklings at Fresh Pond - Welcome, Springtime!

Walking Cosmo Around Fresh Pond Resevoir

Cosmo, Waiting for me to get off the Swing

I'm Car-Free in Cambridge. Feels Good.

I liked Harvard Square so much that I decided to go back and experience it without the MayFair crowds…Paul came to visit over the weekend and we enjoyed the Square together.  

My kind of shopping (Harvard Square)


Algiers Coffee House - Harvard Square

Arabian Coffee with Paul at Algiers (Harvard Square)

Browsing at Beadworks (Harvard Square)

Upcoming Events at Club Passim - Harvard Square (This Pic is for you, Denise)

Smurfs sighting at Hidden Sweets - Harvard Square

 On several occasions, I chose to take the long way home; this day via the Charles River.  Just missed the storm you see brewing below. 

The Charles River - Cambridge Boat Club in the Distance

When I turn right out of the neighborhood instead of left, I run into these gems…

Sofra Bakery & Cafe (on Belmont in Cambridge)

Falafel & Iced Latte at Sofra (yes it was that good)

Vintage Plates at Lady Luxe (Belmont Street, Cambridge)

Lovely Lamp at Lady Luxe

Vintage Suitcases at Lady Luxe

Deluxe Town Diner - Watertown

Ok, that’s just a peek at what I have been up to.  Stay tuned for Week Two and if there is anything you feel I absolutely must see while I am here, do tell, won’t you?        


Earth Day 2010 – What’s (Bar) Soap Got to Do With It?


MGO Soap Display at Mountain Man Fruit & Nut Co.

It is Earth Day and I am feeling good.  The Bay sparkles.  The doors and windows are open wide.  The clothes are drying in the ocean breeze.  And the gardens are coming to life.  We are blessed. 

I am happy about something else, as well.  This morning, I woke up feeling a bit melancholy over my little business, Mountain Girl Organics.  Earth Days past involved Evergreen celebrations that included local poets, musicians, artisans, and MGO prizes (of course). 

This year, my little business is up for sale and the products have all but dwindled from the shelves.  Recently, interest was expressed from a potential buyer who lives out of state and has  never tried MGO products before.  So, Laurie agreed to make a few bars of soap for her.

It is pretty much just as easy to do a large batch as it is to do a small one, so I asked Jeanie at Mountain Man Fruit & Nut Co. in downtown Evergreen if she would be interested in ordering a few more bars.  Her inventory is all but depleted and she said absolutely.

So, while I am excited to be heading in this new direction in life, I am also very pleased to see that my bar soaps will once again be available at Mountain Man during this time of transition.  

The bars will take a few weeks to cure, and not all scents will be available, but they will be on the shelves in time for the busy market season.  I am a bit surprised to feel such relief over this! 

But what is the correlation between bar soaps and Earth Day, you ask? 

My bar soaps are more natural than most.  They are created with organic, sustainable, and fairly traded ingredients…no need for chemical preservatives.  They use very little packaging (which has been recycled and is recyclable).   Lightweight and easy to ship as well. No leaky messes.  I could go on and on…

Your turn.  Are you doing something special in honor of Earth Day? Do you make your own natural products?  Or maybe you have tips for us, on how to live simply so that others may simply live? If so, do tell!

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