The Shining (Photo Courtesy of www.ManILoveFilms.com
Last night, I felt like reading a fiction book. I picked up The Three Weissmans of Westport and read it in almost one sitting. I wanted something breezy and am a sucker for anything inspired by Jane Austen (except for Pride and Prejudice and Zombies: The Graphic Novel. Not my cup of tea).
My interest was piqued when two sisters who called themselves “home sitters” were introduced to the story. No real spoilers here ~ let’s just say that they didn’t exactly make us caretakers / house and pet sitters proud. As I contemplated this, other books and films featuring “our kind” came to mind, and I pondered the generalizations.
So, out of curiosity, what is the first thought that comes to mind when you think of people who do what we do? Does a certain character from a book or film come to mind, or someone you know personally? If so, please leave a comment. If not, please leave a comment. Thanks!
Your Story Matters.
I met a Monica at a Portland Bloggers meeting back in September. We are close in age (I’ve got a little more than a year before hitting the Big 4-0) and she caught my attention with a post titled “39 Things to do Before 40” on her Life Ohm blog. I responded to her post with the comment you see below:
Thank you for the inspiration, Monica! Sounds like we are about the same age : ) I went with your 39 things to do before 40 theme…
- Finish writing our book
- Rent an Airstream for at least a week
- Get back to England to see Paul’s family & friends
- Take an Ayurveda class
- Join Toastmasters
- Pay off school loans (or at least a good chunk)
- Really learn to embroider
- Go back to a vegetarian diet
- Continue to grow my Beachbody business
- Spend more time with my little brother and sister
- Take a digital photography class
- Build up our Caretaking Couple business
- Sell the 4Runner (don’t need it here)
- Continue my search for vintage buttons & ephemera
- Join ancestry.com with my Mom
- Make my own toiletries and candles again (just for fun, not as a biz)
- Volunteer for Habitat for Humanity
- Get back to my yoga classes (at Exhale)
- Start a poker night with new friends
- Polish up on my geography
- write a letter a week to a friend, family member, or stranger
- Blog on a regular basis (at least 3x a week)
- Garden (4 raised organic beds at our new digs – yay!)
- Get a monthly massage
- Finish my scrapbooking projects
- Find a tennis partner
- Learn how to play my guitar
- Go ziplining
- Continue vision boarding
- Visit my friend Laura in Valencia, Spain
- Treat myself to a spa day (for the first time)
- Practice more acts of random kindness
- Finally visit Pike Place Market!
- Figure out all (or at least most) of the functions on my Mac & use them
- Continue to transform our rental house into a “home”
- Get into the habit of staying in the moment
- Focus on people and projects that bring me joy
I would love to keep in touch with you regarding our lists ~ maybe revisit them periodically. Seems we have a lot in common!
This (like the vision boarding) has been a fun and enlightening process for me, and I encourage you to make your own list. You don’t have to be turning 40 in order to play ~ just come up with a list of things that you would like to accomplish by a certain date. And if you feel like sharing said list, please do.
PS I have crossed a few things off since September ~ feels good!
Caretaking Couple Calls Portland Home
When Paul and I decided to house and pet sit full-time back in 2009, the Pacific Northwest was at the top of our travel wish list. Then we were offered a sit on the other side of the country (Cape Cod, MA) and a couple of weeks later, we happily headed north and east. It took us two years to make our way back across the States, eventually landing in Portland, Oregon. This gave us perspective (Paul especially, who moved to America from England about eight years ago) and helped us to narrow down what it is we want and don’t want in a “home base”.
While we both love our travel, I can honestly say that it feels so GOOD to have this little space to call home. We are having the best time making each room comfy-cozy, having friends over, and sleeping in our own bed. And for the first time in…forever, I am perfectly content with the fact that I have absolutely no short-term travel plans. I don’t want to be anywhere but here. What a great way to celebrate the holidays. Can’t wait to decorate our Christmas tree this year, with our own ornaments! What do you love about your home?
“A book is a gift you can open again and again.” Garrison Keillor
Our Caretaking Couple e-Book is coming along. The first several chapters are polished while the last few are still a bit…ahem…rough. Time to finish what I started, methinks!
I receive and respond to several questions about house and pet sitting and living simply in general via e-mail, and am doing my best to address the most relevant ones in this book. Now is is your chance…
If you have any questions/comments/suggestions of your own for us, I would love it if you would share them here on the blog (you can do this by clicking on the comments link). XOX,
Oregon, home of our next sit (Summer 2011)
It is official – our next sit is in Portland, Oregon (beginning in late June). We have been dreaming of the Pacific Northwest for a while now. Neither of us have actually been to Oregon, but we continue to hear great things. Have you been? If so, we would love to hear from you as well!
We have a little more than a month between sits (this one here in Tennessee ends in May) and are unsure what to do with it. Our first choice is Europe (England, Italy, and Amsterdam) but I would have to find us more sits before we can justify a trip like that. So, I am on it…looking for long term sits (preferably in OR, WA, or NorCal) that begin right around October 2011.
If I do line up more sits on the Pacific side, we will most likely road trip it out to MA to get the rest of our belongings from storage, and fly to Europe from the Atlantic side. If not, we are thinking we will take our time driving from here to there (TN to OR), stopping to see loved ones in Colorado and California for sure. Hopefully I will firm up the deets in the next week or so.
Please leave a comment if you have anything you would like to share about Portland, or anything, really…
I think this is a good sign...
I’ve noticed that our little blog is getting lots of hits lately from…all over! If you are reading this, would you do us a quick and fun favor? Simply leave a comment stating where you are (geographically).
If you would like to add more (like what inspired you to stop by in the first place, or what you would like to see me blog about next, etc)…that would be great as well. Thanks!
PS What you see pictured above is the stamp Paul picked out for me in Atlanta over the weekend. I LOVE it! He said he was looking for an Airstream stamp and this is the closest he found. LOVE that man!