Thoughts that have Accumulated While Shipping Packages

I can tell it is shipping season by looking at my hands. They are dry from handling all the paper. The fingertips are sore from holding the edges of cardboard in place while I fold boxes. I have scratches and scrapes on the backs of my fingers from sliding product into boxes. I often have a cut or two from accidentally scraping some part of my hands against the cutting surface of the tape dispenser. Also my right wrist develops an ache.

I re-watched Brave on Monday night. It is a beautiful film that consistently manages to lance open unexpected emotional sores. Apparently I have unresolved emotional conflicts relating to freedom vs. restraint and Mother Daughter relationship struggles. I love Merida. I want to be Merida. Yet I am the mother. This makes me sad. It also makes me aware of how much depends upon what a reader/viewer brings with them to the story. No one else I know has such strong emotional reactions to this film in the places that I have them. I suspect I need to periodically return to the film to keep digging out what causes me to be upset. Also because it is a beautiful and fun film.

Two kids, two pocket knives, and several bars of soap results in soap carvings and soap dust coating one half of the kitchen. In theory soap dust is easy to clean up, but in truth it has to be carefully managed or one just ends up with soap scum on every available surface. Also, the kids are discovering that inadequately cleaned soap dust does not taste good. If soap carving is still a thing come spring, it will be evicted from the house.

My meal planning needs an overhaul. Frozen pizza should not be a staple.

When googling around to find answers for computer problems, it is best to picture yourself treading through swampy, snake-infested waters. Check multiple sources and think three times before downloading any “solutions.” Knowing this is half of what made me so panicked and exhausted when contemplating fixing my computer. The landscape out there changes fast and I don’t speak the native language.

The shipping of unsketched calendars is all done. Only sketched calendars to go. This is good since I’m starting to get emails from folks worried about Christmas presents. I don’t want to add to their stress.

Tomorrow I need to get my act together, conquer the laundry, and pay more attention to the kids and their homework. They’re pretty good at getting the daily stuff done, but I’m certain some longer-term projects are falling through the cracks.

10 thoughts on “Thoughts that have Accumulated While Shipping Packages”

  1. I watched Brave for the first time a while ago and liked it, but didn’t love it. I’m something of a Merida myself, but how they worked with Elinor in the movie bothered me. I feel like they made fun of her weaknesses, but Merida got to show off her strengths. For a story about their relationship, I don’t think it was very balanced.

    Also, Merida has to grow up sometime. Perhaps, in the invisible future, she’ll be a mother 🙂

  2. Soap carving done over dirty bath towels (instead of kitchen counters) simplifies clean up. I used to have extra clean sheets when I was a teen because I carved soap bars on my bed. 🙂

  3. If you’re interested, I could tell you about my friend’s meal-planning system. I won’t write it all out here – it would practically be a blog post in your comments. It takes some set-up work, but once that is done, it makes it very quick to plan meals for a week to a month ahead.

  4. As, yes, a stranger in the “swampy, snake-infested waters” of the Internet…

    When (it’s never “if”, is it…) computer troubles again arise, might I recommend the ArsTechnica forum; it’s got a sub-forum just for windows issues (here:, and the vast majority of the posters are helpful and friendly (though there are the requisite gruff exteriors).

    Full disclosure: I am a paying subscriber to ArsTechncia (that is, I pay them; they don’t pay me).

  5. We have done the soap carving with Scouts several times with similar messy results. This year it is beeswax. You can find large blocks of it at craft stores. It cuts like soap but doesn’t have the powdering effect.

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