Category Archives: Emotions

Mom’s Sewing Machine Instructions

My mom had an Elna sewing machine that ended up being sold at the estate sale. I kick myself for not taking this — even though our history was complicated. I don’t sew. I tried, I failed. I hated that sewing machine with a passion. On the other hand, it was a big part of my childhood — mom sewed often — my first pair of jeans, all of my middle school and high school dance dresses, a perfect gothic cloak for Clare.

It came in a green metal carrying case.

Dad bought the sewing machine for mom from Hall’s in Elgin. Hall’s no longer exists, but I think the building does.

Even though I don’t have the actual machine, I do have the instruction book. And honestly, just looking through the booklet stresses me out.

Mom — Please read

Another item not in a box from the attic knee walls — an apology note to my mom apparently after having a teenage temper tantrum.

It happened again, didn't it? 

I thought that that would never happen again. I know now that I caused it. I was a spectator watching my body move about the familiar pattern. I would be looking forward to something, or not expecting something -- in this case looking forward to a long lazy afternoon. Then the having to work, then not finding you. Then -- the final blow not getting my way. I had fully expected you to come get me -- to drop what you were doing and pick me up.

Why do I expect something as foolish as that?? Because I usually get my way -- and not getting it results in this scene.

Bob will have a story to tell you if you care to pry -- I'd rather you wouldn't -- it's just the usual screaming and swearing and throwing things around.

I really thought I had grown up -- I guess I haven't.

Again, I'm sorry for not being able to handle my emotions properly.


I’m thinking that this was written when I worked at Zayre discount store. I remember that the manager of the jewelry department where I worked called in sick most of the time and I covered for her. it turns out that she was stealing money and was fired, but not before I was called into work much more than I wanted.

I relied on my mom to pick me up and drop me off, otherwise I guess I might have taken the bus or maybe walked. It seems that my mom was not able to pick me up this time.

Bob is my cousin who was living with us at the time. We didn’t get along very well.

I still have the occasional screaming, swearing and throwing things tantrum, but mostly when no one is around.

My Hygge Place

Helen suggested this week’s topic: Hygge. Here’s what she actually said:

It’s a cold, rainy day here and I’m reading an article on hygge (…n-with-getting-cozy), so we could always write about our personal hygge practices (or a very hygge-like experience we had)

Helen from Canada

Until I used the attic office for my full-time work, I believe I felt hygge as I ascended the steps to the attic space and smelled the mixture of old house, carpet, dusty books, disintegrating slate shingles, baseboard heating and the odor of technology. It was my haven. It was where I escaped from the children and where I met up with friends from around the world in online communities (years before Facebook). It was where I sat on the tiny sofa-bed and read or watched television. It was where I listened to Dan Bern and Kate Bush.

Even before we had the attic refinished, before we bought our first computer, I would sit on a kitchen chair at a desk that Dean brought up for me and write in journals or on sheets of legal pad paper — pour out my thoughts, feelings, emotions. Of course in those days I could only go to the attic in the fall or spring because it was neither heated in the winter nor air conditioned in the summer.

Lately, I’ve gotten the feeling back on weekends when I don’t have to sit at the desk and write reports admonishing website developers for forgetting to add alt text to their images or aria-labels to redundant links. I’ve been cleaning (really really really, cleaning) out my office closet and throwing things away that I don’t need and sorting things I might still need. Blogging about some of the things I threw away, and wondering why I’d kept the others for so long.

I still have a ways to go, and come the fall, when I retire, the office will no longer be my work-space. It can go back to being only my place of hygge.

Side note: I’d hoped the enclosed screened in porch (our Lodge) would become my hygge place, but so far it is not doing it for me.