I had a good weekend, workwise, if you define good as finishing a two-day job that gave me enough money not to take the next seven off.
But the thing about working for yourself is that you never really feel comfortable doing that. I'm always thinking ahead - not frantically, mind you - just thoughtfully. It's important to consider the "what ifs." What if this project is canceled ? What if that job I have lined up falls through? So even when I don't need to work, I find myself either doing it or planning something. When you're your own boss, you can't afford to get complacent. When it comes to freelancing, the key to getting fed is to stay hungry.
This week I'm reviving my erstwhile sewing business, which pleases me to no end for I love to sew almost as much as I love to write. Sometimes more. I have a number of interests, and a nack for turning them into little income generators. It helps the family and makes me feel less guilty for splurging on fabric, lenses or laptops. When I taught myself to sew a few years ago, I picked up on it so quickly that before I knew it I had a little sideline business sewing and selling bohemian clothing and handbags.
I dropped it over the summer when all my sewing stuff went into storage during the Giant Home Improvement Extravaganza. But Larry just finished my almost-favorite part of the project - a sewing studio.
So I've started sewing again and have made enough that my Web site will have to be updated. One of the things I'm working on isn't going to make me any money - it's a wall hanging I'm going to sell with all the proceeds going to the late Steve Irwin's Wildlife Warriors. The thought of Irwin's death still makes my heart twist into a tiny, painful knot. It just seems so surreal to me.
The weather has turned nice, and the signs of a dying summer are increasing. Our female garden spiders have completed laying their eggs, transforming their taut, large abdomens into what now look like deflated striped balloons. Lucas loves the garden spiders, and sits on the cedar chest in front of the picture window to talk and read to them in the morning. I've told him why they are moving slower and not eating now, and show him the egg sacs that hold promise of next year's crop of spiders. But I don't think he understands. He says they are his best friends, and the cycle of death in the garden is hard for four-year-olds to grasp, especially when next spring seems so, so far away.
But do any of us ever comprehend it really, this cycle of birth and death? It's no easier for me to understand the demise of Steve Irwin than it is for Lucas to understand the death of his beloved spiders. The spiders seem to understand it all better than we do, or at least don't waste time worrying over it. They spin, they eat, they breed and they die without obsessing over whither and why. Having survived their season on this earth, they hang suspended in their webs and wait with grace for what will happen next.
Perhaps we can learn something from them....
Return of Bird of the Week: Macaroni Penguin - Macaroni Penguins, despite their silly name, are another amazing mountaineering species of penguin. These photos are all from a bouncing Zodiac rubber raft...
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