Day 124 – Mondayween
I am finding it harder and harder to make myself journal about the comings and goings of my corporate housing days. Is it because I have started writing for an audience rather than for just myself? Do I think myself too boring when writing about pool visitations and my relationships with clients and with Melissa? Why am I not using this as a spiritual discipline? Why am I being so hard on myself? Maybe this is just a speed bump but if it is more than that I don’t know if I can continue writing. This just hit me this morning as I pulled on my swim trunks and went out to dive into the still filled pool. And it’s sad because it is not just the writing or not writing – it’s the life being lived day in and day out that provides the foundation for the words that is troubling. Am I hitting a bit of a seasonal depression? Am I just being tough on my life and beating myself to death for not being more exciting? I think I am mainly whining about nothing because to whine is one of my favorite hobbies.
Beyond those difficult thoughts and questions I did have a lot of fun with Melissa at the hospital Halloween party. This party wasn’t actually at the hospital – it was held at one of Melissa’s friends house, which was well decorated. Right when we walked in there were ghosts and ghouls – bowls full of spaghetti and grapes behind paper walls that we had to stick our hands into (representing brains and eyeballs – scary stuff for a kid). It brought back a lot of old childhood memories. Everyone was costumed – I was Jessie Pinkman and my girl decided to go as his partner, Walter White instead of being the blue meth. She went all out and made me nervous every time I saw her fake moustache. Would I still love her if she caught some disease that forced her to have a moustache? I don’t think I could bear it – I am a shallow man at my depths. Anyway, we danced a lot and listened to traditional ghost stories – like the one with the guy who shines bright lights into the back window of a frightened girl who was driving home and the one where a guy with a claw hand does something or another. Dry ice filled the air with the classic smoky feel as tombstones covered the walls. At the end of the night, I returned my Walter White to her doorstep and kissed her hairy lip. It wasn’t as bad as I thought it would be. I guess I would keep Melissa if she had a moustache – as long as it wasn’t like a Magnum PI version.
Oh I forgot to mention that my workday was good – I really impressed those workers who are doing all of that landscaping in Lubbock. Their analytics are proving that they on the right path and they admitted to seeing good growth in their business. I also heard good reports about the Midland Corporate Housing clients. I wasn’t sure they would ever catch up with Lubbock’s high rankings, but it seems that they are nipping at their heels finally. Their point person told me that they were really glad that they had hired me. This of course made me feel very good.
Okay – that’s Mondayween. A good one to be sure. Now if I can just shake this seasonal downturn…May God restore me to a desire to write about life.
Day 123 – Sunday Weeds
It was a calm day with the temperatures in the mid-80’s. Since tomorrow is Halloween and this is the fall season, I am a bit shocked by the weather. Maybe it is wearing “hot” as its costume. If so, that weather sure is clever. Halloween is actually one of my favorite days of the year – the pumpkins and the costumed kids and adults make me feel all excited for some reason. I recall my childhood days wearing my plastic C3PO garb and gathering candy from neighbors. It was fun and I wish I still had the guts to dress up as someone different. I have mad respect for those adults who don’t give a crap and who go nutty with their costumes all day long. The Lubbock lawn care president was one of those brave adults – he told me that he was going to wear a half Princess Leia/half Chewbacca disguise all Halloween day and into the night as they had their company party. I don’t know what a man dressing like a woman Wookie looks like, but I bet he pulls it off very well. He has a good sense of humor and he knows that he can get away with it because he leads the firm. I wonder if he will be hanging holiday lights in Lubbock in that tomorrow. If so, I bet he will get some strange looks.
I know a lot of Christians think Halloween is evil and should be avoided at all costs. And I am sure that Wiccan festivals and cat sacrifices are happening all over the place but I’ve never seen one and I’m not worried that I’m going to catch a curse. I do appreciate the churches who go ahead and have something fun for the kids – like the fall festivals that allow children to dress up and get “safe candy.” (I know my Pre-K Lubbock Christian School client has this really awesome festival for the kids – much respect for not giving up a fun thing.)
I will admit that I am sort of a punk about giving away candy on the night of Halloween because I am too lazy to buy any. If I am stuck at home, I typically just keep the lights low and the TV turned down so the kids are warded off by my darkness. One year I did feel generous and I changed out 100 bucks at the bank for one dollar bills that I gave out to kids. I gave most of them two dollars each and they were very happy – they had plenty of baby Snickers and little Kit Kats. I was the coolest because I handed out cold, hard cash. There was probably some people-pleasing mixed in with my generosity – it’s fun to see kids’ eyes light up when you hand out something surprising. This year Melissa and me will go to a hospital party where I will go as Jessie Pinkman from Breaking Bad (everyone says I look just like him) and she will go as the blue meth I make. So, we won’t be around to give anything away. But I forgot to mention that last night at church I saw a little girl dressed up as a Disney princess and I gave her five bucks. Probably made me look like some sort of weirdo, but she sure appreciated it.
Meditation: Everything that is done in the dark will be brought to light on the day of Judgement – God misses nothing. You can’t disguise your real self from God. He sees who we really are even behind the masks we tend to wear. I sure am glad He sees me behind the blood of Jesus…
Day 120 – Thursday Turntables
Corporate Housing 101 – Make sure to pay for the weekly cleaning – I didn’t start with that little package but it has become a must-have. When you are in a smaller space, you think it will be easy to keep it clean, but I was wrong. It’s good to have someone else clean your toilets and your tub and replace your sheets with fresh ones. Just thought I would make a quick recommendation – I had my room cleaned today and it was really nice to experience good air and the sense of newness. It’s not worth saving a little bit of cash to do it yourself – plus signing up for it pays people who need it. Aren’t I the benevolent and generous and lazy resident of this corporate housing unit? I’m going to nominate myself for the Nobel Prize for Goodness. I bet I win. I do tip well when they come and clean. That should count for something…
Maybe they have a prize for odd, tangential writing…
I had a good workday – My Lubbock lawn landscaping crew is especially happy as are my other clients. I think I will hire this Lubbock lawn care group to go ahead and handle my Christmas décor – holiday lights and such. The new house I bought could use some festive cheer. I guess I will have to check with my tenants to see if they are cool with having this done. Speaking of my tenants, they haven’t been there long but I can tell they will be perfect for this year before Melissa and I move in. My management company did a great job at choosing the correct group.
Melissa and I had a good lunch together at Freshii’s – We both got a Metaboost salad with chicken added and each of us got our own fresh juice. It made me feel healthy to jam a salad and a juice down my gullet, which is used to meat and pasta. As well, the conversation between Melissa and I was purposeful. We decided that we needed to nail down our honeymoon spot. After several options were discussed we finally agreed on going to New Zealand. We both have always wanted to hang out in this country and so we thought it would be a wonderful place to begin our life journey. (I know we had talked about eloping but we figured the church’s new chapel would be more special.) We also talked about if Melissa wanted to go part-time at her nursing gig once we got married. I thought she might want to either do this or find a different nursing job at a doctor’s office – something outside of the crazy hospital setting. She wouldn’t need the money she is pulling in now once we are united and I want her to be happier on a daily basis. But Melissa said that she would keep working the same number of hours because it keeps her balanced. She did say that she would try to get day hours at a doctor’s office to relieve the pressure of the graveyard shifts she currently deals with.
Everything about this day was good – I’m thankful for it.
Day 111 – Tuesday Tells
Another day working on “catering in Lubbock” and “Lubbock Pre-K.” I know it must seem funny to you non-Search Engine Optimization people out there. Using specific keyword phrases to get a company to rank higher for words that potential customers will most likely put into their search bars requires a lot of research. It also requires a lot of consistent work and most of this work is creating content. As they say in my business, content is king. Those who can place strong content on high-ranking websites typically win the day. There is a lot of backend administrative work that has to be done in the initial steps, but most of the rest of it is writing powerful and keyword-rich content. If you can’t write well then you definitely should not get into my business. You will suffer with frustration because you won’t see many gains and the clients who you signed up with promises of ranking improvements will probably fire you in short order. Oh, and you also need to be able to sell your services to potential clients – introverts don’t do very well in this business either.
Wow – that sounded like I just patted myself on the back for my ‘skills’ in this area. I am the Spartacus of SEO – Truth is, I am pretty good at the above, but I am certainly not the best. I find myself running out of things to write that sound relevant and this leads to bad content. Google is the judge of my writing and my placements and I don’t do well quite often. I can admit my weaknesses. I am humble, right?
Melissa and I went to our future house and did one more look through to determine what furniture styles we wanted to be keeping our eyes open for – we made notes relating to all of the rooms and then we went to shopping. We found a couple of couches and a recliner that we wanted for the den. We went ahead and bought them to put into our future house storage place. I found out from the management company that they had already rented this house out to an orthopedic surgeon and her family – they were having a house built and so they needed a place to settle in Lubbock until their house was officially finished. I was happy that I would be receiving extra revenue from that source and happy that the management company had found the perfect couple to live in my house.
Good news all around!
Day 107 – Saturday nights are okay for sliding
Since I took a day and a half off with my food poisoning sickness earlier this week, I wanted to get at least a few things done on Saturday morning. I worked on the keyword phrases “Lubbock catering” and “Midland Corporate Housing” and felt good about what I did – There’s that Bible verse that tells me to work on things as if I working on them for God – which means full attention and full energy. Sometimes I pull that off and sometimes I don’t. It depends if I feel like throwing myself into a project or not – That’s not good. God deserves my best in all of my doings – even if they are done alone for secular clients. That wasn’t even my meditation for the day – It happened to be the topic of the sermon at Saturday evening church. I had to attend this service by myself, because Melissa was working. She has been working a lot lately – I think to make up for her missed time due to the accident. This shows her dedication to her craft and I bet she lives out her work at full energy. She probably didn’t even need to hear this sermon because is already doing it. My respect for her grows more and more by the day. It’s one thing to fall in love with someone and an entirely different thing to respect this same person. I am a blessed man.
Meditation: We have a devourer who is out to lie to us, steal from us, kill us and destroy us. We have an enemy of our souls and spirits and bodies and he waits for “opportune times” to come after us. When we get bored, hungry, angry, lonely and/or tired we are most susceptible to fall into temptation that works – the kind of temptation that matches our desires with well-marketed evil. I forget this truth most of the time – I get my eyes on this world that is dominated by the senses and forget that there is a powerful spiritual being who is just waiting for me to open my life to his schemes. I don’t have to open a Ouija board or attend a séance or go to a Wiccan meeting to welcome him in to my world. I just have to forget he is around and lose my awareness of where I am in relation to my God. If I stay close to God, I have a refuge that protects me from such attacks – I forget to do this as well. But, now that I have been reminded of the reality of an evil that wants to put me on its menu, I plan on running back to my godly base and staying there. Good meditation today – especially as Monday night Bible study draws closer.
That’s all I have for this day of restful work and prayer. How are you in your world? How do you deal with the enemy of your soul? I recommend a book by C.S. Lewis entitled “The Screwtape Letters” for more on this topic. It’s a creative and powerful book.