Hello friends and bloggers! I am so excited to be participating in this month's NaBloPoMo hosted by the amazing BlogHer! By adding GypsyRue to the official blog roll at BlogHer I have set a goal for myself, my readers and the other (around 400!) bloggers who are part of this, to write one new blog post a day or share a photo, poem, drawing. I am delighted to have a chance to learn from more experienced bloggers, find new blogs to love and share a lot more of my world with you! Oh, and if that's not enough, I'm just crazy enough to be signed up for NaNoWriMo as well! I've been meaning to try to reach the elusive 50,000 word fiction goal for NaNoWriMo for over a decade now, but I'll be honest, I've never gotten past the first typed page!
Not only am I psyched to start writing the novel that has been slowly unfurling in my brain for years, but it will be such fun to be writing fiction for NaNo (shortened names saves writing time!) and also write about the topics I am passionate about here- things I love that I want to share, including how we manage to get through life with no "real" jobs, why I have been called the Queen of Odd Jobs- and more importantly how you can pick up extra work for the holidays through one of the many great businesses I will profile each week, recipes that my family and I love, book reviews, learning aromatherapy and medicinal herbs with the goal of being certified in both next year and sharing ways to use natural, healing ingredients such as essential oils, coconut oil, shea butter and beeswax to make lovely homemade gifts for the upcoming holidays. I spend much of my day in my kitchen, listening to the roosters (yes, plural- the extra two really need a new home!), cooking meals from scratch for my family, trying desperately to keep the herbs in the windowsill from dying, making new batches of lotion, diaper cream, solid perfumes and so much more!
This month will also challenge me to get a lot better about time management and meal planning- things I have been letting slip for too long now. I work as a freelancer and I also have a rare, chronic, very painful disorder and mild disability, which makes getting through easy days challenging. 3 and 1/2 years of failed surgeries and medical treatments, too many medications and failed procedures have led to me getting very far from where I hoped to be in life. My husband is a disabled Army veteran with wretched migraines and spinal pain, so two parents who are more often than not hurting badly plus the demands of life with healthy, hyper children makes some days a challenge. Since Western Medicine has failed to help both my condition or improve my husband's, I am studying all I can about natural healing remedies and taking it upon myself to get back to eating as little processed food, factory farm meat, anything with GMOs and fruits or vegetables sprayed with any of the -cides. I have so much to share with you!
I have a tendency to be quite wordy. In the case of NaNoWriMo, this will be a benefit, but for those of you who just want a quick glimpse into what you'll see on GypsyRue this month:
1. Recipes! Mostly vegetarian, vegan, minimally processed for ethical reasons. Lots of baked good recipes because I love to bake! I will practice meal planning and hope to learn and share ways to make meal planning easy, fun and ultimately be things my very picky eaters will love!
2. Fun with Fermentation! I just got my first three crocks. I have many, many SCOBY pancakes in my kombucha, but I can’t wait to try other things like sauerkraut, kimchi, apple cider vinegar from apple peels and cores.
3. Essential Oils and Aromatherapy- I am a distributor for Young Living Essential Oils, but I appreciate all the quality essential oil companies out there. I turned to Young Living after trying some and getting some relief from my 3 + year nerve disorder, and getting one too many essential oils from eBay and Amazon that smelled like ammonia. Blech! I am not certified yet, but plan to be soon. I’ll share uses of certain oils and some lovely items to make for yourself or others using essential oils and medicinal herbs, which I am now studying and attempting to grow. I do not have a green thumb. It’s nothing short of a miracle that the basil I have in the windowsill has survived for four months now! There’s hope for me yet!
4. How To Work From Home (and Perhaps Make Enough to Pay All Your Bills!) I have been an independent contractor for over 18 years. I have worked for a very wide variety of companies and individuals doing all manner of tasks that people would rather pay others to do for them. I have a knack, a penchant or perhaps just an odd but handy skill for finding ways to make money that are off the beaten path. Not illegal- don’t worry- just unique, which means there is a better chance that you too can make money from it because it’s not say, getting paid to take surveys online (which you really don’t get paid for and are not worth bothering with!) I’ll share some of the best companies for those of you looking for a few extra dollars or a full-time job. I have found many scams, but I have also made a living working from home, through mystery shopping, customer service, editing, several odd jobs and more. I hope to help others find a job or short-term gig, and also know where to look for future opportunities.
5. Time management. Aside from being a requirement if I hope to do this much writing for the next 30 days, I need help planning my days and weeks much better. Yes, I work from home, but I find myself sitting at the computer for much too long each day. I want to create a schedule that includes time to read (and write book reviews here!), time to start meditating…finally, time to cook, craft natural, homemade gifts and things for my home, body, family that are cheaper and healthier to make then the toxic cousins at the grocery store or online! Time management will be a work-in-progress-project.
6. Support for those who also suffer life-altering diseases, disorders and disabilities. I hope this will be a place where we can support one another, share stories and find ways to live life fully despite pain, fear, exhaustion and side effects of medication or treatments.
7. Farming, kind of. My family and I live in the Southwest where there is only one season-summer-pretty much all year round. While I prefer this to snow, it makes it quite the challenge to keep any plants, veggies, fruit or herbs alive. This month I’ll be focusing on rare plants, mostly edible that are possible to grow in drought conditions and temperatures outdoors during summer of 110 and up. When we started our homestead a little over three years ago our intention was to raise heritage breed (endangered) chickens. We have a motley crew flock of chickens now, as a result of wandering feral dogs and other predators. The main problem we face each day is that we began our little farm right as I was diagnosed with a rare nerve disorder and my husband began having severe spinal pain and migraines. As a result we may have to cull our flock down to our lifers- those few hens and one rooster who have names and our love. It’s heartbreaking to have to put a stop on our dreams for now, but I look forward to a day when we are well enough to get heritage breed chickens and a couple Nigerian Dwarf goats for milk, cheese making and soap making! One day! I just have to help my husband and myself feel better first- with or without the help of medical professionals.
That’s about it for now! I did mention my inability to be concise, right?! Thanks for visiting! Introduce yourself and stop back any time. I am new to the blogging world, so Gypsy Rue will be improving and growing each day. Have a lovely weekend and be well!