Here's the thing.

We need to talk.

I'm pretty lazy, by and large.  
At night, it often goes something like this:

Susan: (from her comfy chair) You know, we should paint the woodwork in this house.  White woodwork would make me really like this house.  It would make a whole lot of difference in my daily happiness.

Russ: (from his comfy chair) Yeah, white woodwork would be a world of improvement.  You're right.  We should do that.  Someday.

Susan:  What shall we do now?  Let's watch Perry Mason.

Russ:  Great.  What season are we on?  Season six?  Again?  Awesome.  I'll fire it up.

Susan:  Thanks, honey.  Because I'm pretty comfortable in this comfy chair.

That's pretty much any night of the week at this house.  Although sometimes it's Mad Men or Glee or even Mary Tyler Moore.

Anyway, the point is, it's never painting woodwork.

Until one day....we got a WILD idea.  We were ordering new windows for the house due to some hail damage.  New windows for the whole house!  Exciting, right?  It was.  In fact, it was so exciting, we decided to order white.  Because it would FINALLY FORCE US TO PAINT THE DARN WOODWORK.  It was a big step.  In fact, I'm not sure I could have done it.  Russ finally took a deep breath and placed the order while I was hiding out in the deserts of Southern Utah when I ran away from home last fall.  And from my vantage point there (in a different comfy chair), it sounded like a GREAT IDEA.

Cue ominous music.....

enter CORPORATE MOVE, stage left.

Yeah, between the ordering the windows and the painting of the woodwork, Russ decided to take a new job.  It was cause for celebration!  Except.....

4000 sq. ft. of painting to be done.  Because when you put some spanking white enamel on the woodwork, it's a little like moving your old sofa to your new house -- you notice just how RATTY your old sofa looks.  Everything in the house needed to be painted.  From the baseboards on up.

Doesn't it make you angry to do all that work 
to sell to someone else? 

This is the question I have been asked continuously since I first put on my paint clothes nearly 3 weeks ago.

Of course it does.  ANGRY AT MYSELF.  And a little angry at Perry Mason, for being so gosh-darned entertaining, even all these years later.

It's going slowly....but coming surely. 

However -- we're still living in this:

There's a dining room table in there somewhere...

But no worries, because no one's going to be cooking anything anytime soon!

(And don't expect to be entertained in the living room either. )

And we will be in this mess for awhile yet....because new carpet comes next if the painting ever stops.

Every morning I wake up intending to fire up my computer and come here, where it's always clean and tidy and just how I like it.  And every night I go to bed saying, "maybe tomorrow."

So it is with tremendous sadness that I announce a little hiatus for Small Works -- just a few weeks, until I restore a little order around here. 

I will miss you all, blog buddies -- already have!  For too long!

But even if I could think
of anything to say
that didn't involve paint . . .

I wouldn't be able
to remember it long enough
to say it.

So be good.  In the meantime, I'll be lurking.

And I'll look forward to seeing you . . . and talking about something else for a change -- soon!


The Great Hinckley Home Improvement/Preparation for Selling Marches On...

After 10 days of wearing only paint clothes . . .

I decided both my mind and my body needed a little break from all-things-woodwork.

So I threw some favorite real clothes in a bag, cashed in a few frequent flier miles, and took a little trip.  The purpose of the trip was to savor fine baked goods, watch stupid movies, and enjoy a great cheeseburger.

Mission accomplished, on all counts.

The Greek philosopher Heraclitis (of whose writing only fragments remain) said:

The rule that makes
its subject weary
is a sentence
of hard labor.

For this reason,
change gives rest.

Sometimes a little bit of doing nothing and thinking about nothing for no reason is just what the doctor ordered.

I put on my same running shoes and went for a run, but I looked at snow-covered mountains instead of 140th street.  I listened to the same music on my iPod, but did it in a sleek and small black rental car instead of my minivan.  I went to Target to buy something I forgot to pack, but it wasn't my Target and there was no grocery list in my purse . . . no thought of whether or not there was milk in the refrigerator.  Not my problem, if only for a day.

There are times when thinking
-- or not thinking --
about whether there is milk 
makes all the difference.  

Hello, paint clothes.
I have not missed you, but now I will gladly put you on again and go back to work . . . for a bit.



Worky Wednesday.

Yippee Skippee!

Today's the day I can finally tell you 
the news that will explain WHY 
I have been such a lousy blog friend.  
Yes, it's an excuse and possibly a lame one, 
but it has certainly shaken the ground 
in Small Works Land...

Small Works is moving.  
No, not in the "Same bat-time, same bat-channel" sort of way...Small Works itself will still be found right here (if any of you have been kind enough to stick around while I've been sorta MIA).

I mean, the whole kit-and-kaboodle is moving:  Susan, her wool stash, her studio, her stacks of old magazines, Cooper -- pretty much everything I write about is moving -- EXCEPT -- the Minnesota weather.  That is going to stay right here.  Which means I am going to have to find new things to write about.

I'll probably still write about the weather, actually -- because it's "out of the frying pan, into the fire" (literally).... 

We are moving to Phoenix!

That means that instead of complaining about the cold for 9 months of the year, I can complain about the heat for 9 months!  Everyone shout hooray!  Because I like heat ever-so-much more than cold. So my complaining may become more good-natured.

And my neighbors may finally understand me!  

A home in the desert!  
A land of guacamole and promise! 

If I can ever get there.  There are a few things that have to happen first.  Getting windows last week was step one. There are about 100 additional steps.  Which is why I have been wearing paint clothes for so long, it feels like I was born in them.  

But it feels so good 
to have let the secret escape at last!

Please bear with me while I am in and out for the next while -- once the house is on the market, things will calm down around here.  (And that better be soon, since the St. Paul ACC is just a month away!)

Perhaps the best thing about blog friends is that you can take them with you.
(Hope you'll come along to the new neighborhood!)

Now get lost! -- before I hand you a paint brush and put you to work.....

Happy Wednesday!



Sunday Scribble.

image: Uzengia Aleksander Nedic


you are the wind
in my leaves, the rustle
of our kiss breathes
love's low psithurism
here where only you
can hear my whispering

-- smh

Must be time for The Mag.  
Please come join the fun!




                  look in --

                       and catch a glimpse, a slice
                       of story, see a little
                       of a life, a bit
                       of someone's bio captured
                       like a picture in a frame

                  look out --

                       and watch the world, a catalog
                       of all creation, make 
                       your map, enjoying everything
                       there ever is or was
                       to see and always
                       leave your curtains open

                                                                                                                    -- smh



Wednesday Woes.

Good morning!

Good morning! Have you any news?!

I do, but I have been advised that I am not 
at liberty to share it....until next week.

Hmmm....well then.  
Any less "prickly" topics we can discuss?


Let's talk about getting new windows.  
In Minnesota.  
The first week of March.

Go ahead and ask why.

Why would she be so dumb?

I can tell you that I did not exactly arrive at this moment by choice.  We started the process last August.  It seemed like an okay idea, because we were assured the windows would be in before October.   Missed that deadline, and missed it big. Then I had to talk hard and fast to get them to wait until March.  First they were pushing for December...then January...then February.  So that's how we got here.  The fine art of compromise. Because the window folks thought they'd be great for Christmas, and I would have been much happier with June.

As I type, an entire wall of my family room is missing.  Also one in my master bedroom.  And one in the kitchen is going to come out next . . .

Brrrr.  Plain and simple. 
(Day 2, and we're about halfway)

Cooper has also had enough fun.  

He has not specifically complained about the cold,
but he'd like his kingdom back . . .


As would I.

My husband went to San Francisco for the week to work (eat fine Chinese food?), leaving me to be the foreman of this event.  Although he felt terribly guilty about it . . .


Let's just say we've been down this road before --

There have been 30 years of suspiciously-timed business trips, actually. And I'm not the first woman in the family to be in this position.  There's the unforgettable childhood moment when my mother called my father in a panic because the basement had flooded, and he said, "What do you want me to do about it from BOSTON?!" (He has since regretted that statement, btw.  About a million times.)

And going back further, I've heard reports that once my distraught grandmother was actually clinging to my grandfather's leg as he dragged her across the kitchen floor toward the door, saying,  "Got a busload of people waiting!  Gotta go!"

It's okay. I'm not bitter.  A little cold, but not bitter.  Okay, -- furious, numb with cold, crazed by the continual buzzing and pounding...but not bitter.

And he will make it up to me. 

(I may be getting new windows 
in the winter in MN, but I'm not stupid.) 



Sunday Scribble.


image by Sarolta Ban

She Said

there may as well be neon
lights, the curve of brow
tells all, billboard eyes
so loud they yell
message received, yet not
a word was spoken, sometimes
this feels so big and I
am too close, I
can only crane my neck
a vain attempt
to take it in, all at once


Love, love, love this image!  
How could I resist manufacturing
a little drama to go with? 

Click on over to  
and see the story
through different eyes . . .



"I like the word 'indolence'. It makes my laziness seem classy." -- Bern Williams

Good grief. 
Friday already?

I think most of the week passed by while I was napping.  Or actually awake, but thinking about napping.  Or asleep, but pretending to be awake.

Anyway . . . it seems I missed it.

I felt a little like I'd been "rode hard and put away wet," in Bonanza-speak --

or if you're more familiar with kitchens than stables,

like someone had used a brillo-pad on every part of my life just a tad too aggressively. And I was sore.

So on Tuesday 
I declared it to be
"National Be Nice to Me Week" -- 

and my equally-worn-out booth hand and I commenced a regimen of all-things-self-indulgent. 

Many episodes of Mad Men 
and a whole lot of melted cheese later . . .

yes, it's hot dogs, pork-n-beans and Velveeta . . . yum! 
I think taste buds were invented after the 1950's

I awoke this morning to find that I finally felt a little more like my usual self -- in fact, almost human!

And it's about time.  Although I'm sorry to declare an end to my self-proclaimed week of pampering, I've got a lot to do, including (but not limited to) cleaning up the mess that somehow appeared in the studio during the pre-show frenzy.

And! . . .  There are also some big changes afoot in Hinckleyville . . . . capital "B"  BIG. Further details will be coming soon, but rest assured that Susan has finished lolling around the TV room for awhile and is going to be busy, busier, busiest!

(Just as soon as I finish digesting the enormous plate of cheese enchiladas I had for lunch. Okay, to be completely honest I must describe my holiday as almost over)

Happy, Happy Weekend, 
One and All! 


Blog Widget by LinkWithin