I found this note in an old scrapbooking file, reminding me that I can really paint a picture with words from time-to-time (this was in Logsden, Oregon):

"January 2012
I went out early this January morning, still in my pajamas, having put my sock-less feet into my not-so-waterproof mud boots, to take pictures of the newly fallen snow. The quiet stillness was broken only by the crunch, crunch of my steps and the raucous clamor of crows fighting over a breakfast morsel."

Bob says I sound like a professional writer.

I was having a bit of trouble this morning. I have spent over a week attempting to organize my digital life, which includes my lists of projects. This morning, I went to add my product ideas list to my organizer but could not find the folder that contained the templates to 15 designs that I have created, but haven't yet published. I was on the verge of a major meltdown. I knew that I had saved these images and had a backup copy. Finding them, however, was another story.

I attempted deep breathing. Inhale. Exhale (stifling a frustrated scream). Inhale. Exhale (giving up is not the answer). Inhale. Exhale... oh, yeah... I have essential oils just for this feeling!

So, I stopped what I was doing to put some essential oils on. Then, I decided that breakfast may be a good idea - for both myself and the animals.

Feeling a lot calmer and ready to try again, I immediately found what I was looking for. Sometimes, we just need to take a moment to step back, allowing the moment for the whirling arguments in your head to pass, before trying again. :) of course, it does help a bit having the tools and skills available too ;)

I'm beginning to feel like I'm dealing with multiple dumpster fires while attempting to bring order to my digital chaos.

When I switched to Windows 10, I had to find a new digital organizer. I have been trying several options this past year and am now attempting to bring all of the entries and notes into the one that I have chosen: Asana. It has nearly everything I was looking for and is free for everything that I want to do, so worth the effort. :)

Since my old organizer no longer works, I needed to find a new, safer solution for my 250+ passwords (it's amazing how quickly they add up!).

When I switched to Windows 10, I discovered that the new Outlook program for my emails does not import the old account files. Yay. So, I've been sorting and saving important emails and setting up a new program with the filters that will make my life easier.

I paused on those when I prepared a package to be taken to the post office. It was then that I realized that my old Outlook and organizer was where my contacts lists were, and I hadn't backed them up. So, I had to find a way to deal with contacts and updated the information while I was at it (including facebook profile links so that it won't be as hard to find everyone if my account gets hacked again :) ).

Then, instead of simply transferring my 10 browser profiles with each of their sets of bookmarks, I found a bookmark manager that works with every browser and device I have (regardless of my traveling) and decided to consolidate my 3k+ bookmark collection.

I have also gotten tired of trying to figure out which fonts are ok to use for commercial purposes (not all are licensed for that) when creating my projects and decided to only keep the fonts that can be used. This brought my 900+ option list down to 200 or so.

I also have plans to reorganize my files and images (over 200k files) so that I might be able to find what I'm looking for easier. :p

In summary:

Organizer (including transferring several years worth of information from old methods): in progress
Email setup: done (though an ongoing project)
Fonts list: done
Security: done
Contacts: done
Bookmarks: almost done
Files and images: on this week's to do list

I didn't realize that I had allowed my digital life to become so chaotic until I started to streamline it. Sigh. Hopefully this won't take very many more days... I have other projects I want to complete!"

"Have I mentioned lately how much I love living here? I was thinking about it as I was shedding my coat in this wonderful (after-last-year's-trauma-inducing-snow), above-freezing mid-December weather because I was getting too warm doing a little barn cleaning.

Our own place with a barn... a barn I can go clean at my leisure... or leave dirty, if I can handle it. ;) Married to a man that doesn't mind if I ditch the dishes because I'd rather be shoveling manure... or hugging my horse... or doing nothing at all... Such happiness!

(The horses refused to pose and decided pictures of their tails was all they were willing to do today ;) )

An early Christmas present... New shoes! <3

Bob's shoes were worn out, so I ordered him a replacement. He didn't know what to get me for Christmas, so I suggested we give each other shoes... But, my feet started hurting and we decided that neither of us could wait until Christmas. :)

Bob was a little puzzled over my excitement about shoes and asked how long it's been since I had a new pair. I thought for a moment and new shoes was before we met. My last pair were practically new, but six or seven years ago.

He looked at me incredulously and said: 7 YEARS?! No wonder your feet hurt!

I said, well... I've gotten muck boots... two pair even (summer and winter)! :)

I swear he almost rolled his eyes! lol

An invigorating 15 degrees this morning. Now where did I put those heated gloves?

My newest adventure: Windows 10

Bob said that it must be a cold day in the nether-world [paraphrased ;)] for me to want Windows 10. It is true that I have been resisting the change, but.... it is time.

Surprisingly, after the initial panic attack of my main digital planner being unusable (even after intending on changing my method to begin with), I have not had any difficulty making the switch. We thought it would slow down and potentially crash my computer. However, just the opposite has happened! It seems to have fixed some issues that we thought were hardware related - such as USB ports not working, very little sound coming through and my backup drive disconnecting. And, there are some things that I am really going to enjoy... like using the apps that caught my eye, inspiring this change.

With this change, and the new year just around the corner, I decided to update my vision board as well. :)

I have been asked about the meanings behind each image of my vision board. This is me staying focused on my goals: continuing my creativity (break free) and building our new store; working on my horsemanship (once it warms a little again ;) ); staying connected in my spiritual life and finish writing my book; continuing my fitness goals in balance, flexibility and endurance; and building my website incorporating horses and essential oils (heavenly oils).

My phone buttons were wearing out (making it difficult to get it to wake up), so we invested in a new smart phone for me. :) (I was able to keep my phone number) My previous phones have been hand-me-downs that I have always been grateful for, but no one else needed a new phone this time. This one is bigger than I care for, but I have to use a headset while using a phone any way so it works. I didn't choose the phone for the camera, but the camera does promise to be quite the upgrade.

Of course, four hours into owning this wonderful new device, it refused to receive calls. My youngest was like: what did you touch? (well... every thing ;) ) and how did you already break it?! I'm super talented. Thankfully, it just needed to reboot after all of the updates and changes. :)

We did opt for the extended accidental warranty since I have been doing a lot more outside with a phone. Though... what could possibly go wrong playing with horses and such? ;)

Always find time to make your soul shine! <3

I finally decided to design and order some business cards :)

Of course, it may help if I get the website updated before we start handing them out... ;)

I have several projects requiring a chain saw in mind, so Bob bought a mid-size one a few months back. Today, we worked a little on one of these projects... Bob cut down a small tree (and removed a limb from another tree) that was in the way of putting in one section of fence. The chain had had a bit of abuse during my first project (involving a large stump on the edge of one of my raised beds) and was stretched beyond the point of return by the time this little tree was down. Therefore, we left most of the limbs to cut at a later date. But, it is nice to at least have this part done and can now see clearly to mark this section. :)

I decided to try a round bale for the horses. A few days of them enjoying it, I came out and the first thing I thought was: "Timber!"

I constructed a quick pallet ring to keep the bale from falling on them. It's been a week now and seems to be doing it's job. I still haven't decided if it's worth investing in an actual bale feeder to continue feeding round bales or not. This bale will have to last another 10 days to make the cost comparable to small bales, but I do like the convenience and less to clean in the barn... ;)

an idea from my youngest...