Monday, November 7, 2011

Returning to My Roots

Lord have mercy.
It's the 7th of November.
Do you realize what this means?
Neither do I.


I need to spill some beans here.
I'm flummoxed.

That means 'confused, at a loss, perplexed'.

I've been sitting in my living room spot, with a large mug of lukewarm English breakfast tea, with my hoodie hood up - answering emails since 5:30am.  It's now 7:23am.

One of the emails that I responded to was a dear reader asking me about my housecleaning routine.

I referred her to this

And then I started reading some of my old posts from that series.

I liked that series.

Honestly - I feel that my blog has been on life support for some time now.
I feel like I've nothing funny, nor important to say.
I feel that I oughta pull the plug on it before it dies a slow, painful, gaspy death.

My blog is alot like Seinfeld - it's really a blog about nothing.
It's just a snippet of my life - and I don't sugar coat it - don't embellish it - it just is me.
Honestly, I can't believe y'all have stuck with me for as long as you do - and when I hear from you via comments and emails - it just brightens me up, from the inside out.

Lately, I've been second guessing so much of life.
Maybe it's losing 75 lbs recently and finding the new me.
Maybe it's turning 50 in a few months.
Maybe it's none of the above and I just need therapy and meds.

February 2011

latest pic of me - second from left - October 2011

What I've really been second guessing lately is my decision to stay home full time.
I mean - wouldn't a smart person just go out and work like a maniac and build up a nice sized bank account?
Shouldn't I do that?
I often feel guilty when I talk to my friends that do work full-time.
I've been there and done that - and I know first hand what a stress that can be at times, but I also know the joy of the feeling of having a purpose, enjoying work friendships, and well - enjoying money!

I mean - can I REALLY bring home the bacon, fry it up in the pan and never let Glenco forget he's a man?

Honestly, I'd rather not try.

ll the drivel here to say that I think I've just lost my way recently.  I think that psychologically there is something about losing a great deal of weight that you end up redefining yourself.

I've had two highly respected friends tell me recently how calm I seem.
How I exude peace.
ADHD Poster Child?


And I think is some way - that this new found peace feeling - as foreign as it is to me, and yet what I have purposely cultivated in my life - makes me feel downright boring.
Am I?

Law.  I hope not.

So all of this to ask this -
what were/are your favorite parts of my blog?
I feel the need to return to my roots - about being home - loving home - being frugal - gardening - cooking -

What say ye?

(oh and I bet you thought I forgot to answer all those questions that you guys asked me on the honey giveaway - well, you'd be right - gonna answer them this week.)


  1. I just read your blog no matter what you talk about. I don't always leave a comment but that's my fault and not yours. And I NEVER advise a blogger on what to blog about or what actions to take with their blog. It's a very personal decision and I don't think it should be decided by 'what others want to see you blog about'. Just do what is right for YOU. But you do sound a bit like you want to work outside the home. The question is, "What say ye, Jayme".

  2. Are you kidding me? Boring? Never! It's not about what you post it's about you. Your personality shines through your blog, it may be Seinfeld-ish but in a good way. You share the good and the bad and help us realize we're not alone.

    I may not always comment but I'm always checking out what's going on in your 'hood. : )

  3. I always love reading your blog! It is the first one I look for in the list of blogs I follow! I think it just morphs with the different seasons of your life. You will enter a new season again and the blog will enter it with you. I have loved every post!

  4. wow - congrats on the weight loss!

    I'm seeing a common theme through several of the blogs I follow. Everyone seems to be going through the same sort of thoughts you are. I wonder if it's the season?

  5. crack me up! I love your light-hearted writing. I struggle with 'work'....'stay at home'....'work'...stay at home'... but it might all be answered for me next year. You see I work for a school system and I am pretty sure my job will be eliminated. Pretty sure....not positive. Either that or I will have to work for my insurance which...doesn't sound like too much fun!! year, I may be unemployed. Which, in that case, I will find some 'little' job for the extra cash and will stay at home and hopefully watch my 4 week old grandbaby!! Or work in my studio and do all the things I never have time for!! You see, I am 55 and STILL question LIFE, This morning, as I was getting ready for work, I looked at myself in the mirror and thought...."Why don't I just hitch up "my little chickadee' and take off. Drive around the beautiful United States of America?!? I could die why not LIVE today? Then I turned off the bathroom light and got my coat on and off I went. Maybe it is the season.

  6. Jayme, woe is me...looking more like your before photo than your after...these days.
    I work full time and it is HARD to do it all...heck, in the fall I work full time AND part-time! My art table is so neglected that it needs dusting! The house is a wreck...the ironing is piled high. (Yes, I iron.)...WOE is me! But...I can't imagine not working or even working part-time. Truly, I think I would go bonkers. And these days my time off is balanced with baby times which lends itself to great peace. People ask me if I think about retirement and the answer is NO.
    xo, Cheryl

  7. my favorite part of your blog? YOU!

    oh yeah...and diet advice, humor, the love of vintagey things, decorating an older home, frugality, all of thee above...Y.O.U.! :)

  8. The chicken stories! I still miss your Helen. She was such a lovely chicken....

    Just keep posting, we like you, you know? :)

  9. Cut the fluff and I'm gonna be honest, I miss the older posts as well, all the home stuff, the way you did things, the cooking and cleaning, the thrifting. I so love the things you work on and the finished products. Working outside the home is fine for some, but you make wayyyyyy more money selling your face tonic and honey and you know you could sell even more. You really need to think hard on that cookbook idea I mentioned the other day. Your collection of your favs. We'd all buy a copy. Of course you are the best part of the blog but I miss the old stuff too, even the chicken stories. Well gotta run, love you tons, me

  10. I love your blog! Aren't most of us writing about nothing anyway? It's just fun to read about how you do things, you are so much fun and enthusiastic. I don't work outside the home either and I feel no guilt or desire to do so. Don't give up on us, I value your friendship no matter how far apart we are as the crow flies!

  11. gotta say I agree with Ra and Mamahen......
    I do love a good chicken story :)

  12. I'm a newbie to your blog...and I've enjoyed your posts. My husband passed away two years ago and I lost weight (from emotion and necessity) and wasn't sure what direction to go with my blog either. I too felt like I had nothing new to say. My blog continues as an eclectic mix, a hodge podge of things I like and love and I'm happy with that. Plus I have online friends all around the world, and I like "visiting" them and having them "visit" me!

    I think you still have plenty to say and hope you will continue to say it!

  13. I am a new-ish reader of your blog...and I love it! My blog is just as random and ... sometimes pointless(?) as you feel that yours is!

    But I would love to hear all about how you stay content at home, how you fill your time, what you cook, tricks you use for cleaning...etc! Anything you've gotta say...I'm all ears!

  14. My favorites have been memories of your family, husband, Aaron, Mom. Your frugal/pink chicken posts, simple living and baking. Your beekeeping adventures have been fun too! If you feel this part of your life is taking too much out of you, I would understand. It's your life, and you are taking it back, you'll do what's best for you and your family.

  15. Don't you even think about quitting blogging. Yours is my very favorite and like a little treasure when I see you have posted a new one. I think you are having an identity crisis. You have lost so much weight-you are having a hard time trying to figure out who you should be now. Please don't change. We all love you as you are. Anything you write is a treat.

  16. I miss your honestly every day with the things that you go through. Thins that we all think we are the only ones going through them, like laughing at the weird accent lady who visited your house on the garden tour, or when you have had it with Aaron. I love most the way you want to return to yesterday with wearing flour sake print dresses and pearls. How you love simple things and want to do things from scratch. PLEASE don't stop blogging. It doesn't have to be hysterical every time.

  17. Once one has lost weight, they find there is so much to catch up on all they think they have missed in life.
    Get out and enjoy life...many that carry excess weight have a tendency to stay coupe up in the house. This is a new avenue in your life, explore it, live it, love it, enjoy it. Take this time to do all the things you can do then when you are pooped and have done it all, come blog about it.

    I do love your post on Aaron and what you all did together. I miss your cooking vids, chicken talk and the Squirrel.

    BUT like I said, Later gator... enjoy your new found you!

  18. Honestly, I love everthing about your blog. YOU are what makes your blog interesting. You are like a great friend that you sit down to chat with so anything you talk about is interesting. You're fabulous personality comes through everything you write. I can understand why so much searching etc. during this time though. Stay home, go to work, but whatever you do please DO NOT STOP BLOGGING! Please. ;) :)

  19. You hooked me- a 20-something, coastal-native-country-loving, city dwelling, reluctant (unemployed) housewife- almost 2 years ago with your farm house ramblings and simple-life-loving ways. I love your humor, your accessible approach to writing, and the photos of your hilarious hens. More Tales of the Coop Keeper that you truly are please!! :)

  20. You baby cakes that is what we all love.

    I think a pig would liven up the blog. Maybe you should get one of those.

  21. All I know is that when I see the name of your blog I want to read what you have to say first of all because you make me smile and LOL and for your "zest" too, and second for your insight and perspective.

    And may I suggest, that there is a NEW Jayme . . . look at all the differences; weight, size, clothing, diet, foods, preparations, presence, relationships, feelings . . . and no doubt you can name a few more things . . .

    I enjoy the "before" and the "now" Jayme . . .

    The "everything" about you is refreshing!

  22. I guess I am a bit of a lurker here in terms of comments, but I felt I needed to comment on this post. Honestly Jaime, for me you are a source of inspiration. I don't really care what you write about, there is always something in your posts that strikes home. Write about what ever moves you and I am more than happy to read about it!

  23. Defining why we like to come for a visit is like defining why we like sunshine or why chocolate tastes so darn good. But if I must say what I liked the best was the chickens, I miss my flock...also the tips and recipes cause I have to clean everydangday and cook everydangday. I'm not going to the south of France anytime soon so it's blogging buddies that keep me amused and current. If you're like me, your eyes would pop out if you didn't let some of the pressure off every few days with a blog!

  24. I would still read it no matter what you talked about. You make the blog, not the topics. :)

  25. You continue to be inspiring. Now, this minute you should blog about life after the weight loss and trying to redesign yourself. Weight loss programs don't seem to go into the emotional 'new you' after the weight loss. You seem to have reached your goal and are saying 'now what?' New goals and new you to sort out is worth sharing. Big hugs to you an I hope I breathed some extra inspiration. ;-)

  26. You know what, I just like reading about "you" and whatever it is "you" are doing! I'd have never known you thought your blog was on life support! I always read each post, and come away feeling like, well, that was fun!

  27. Ah Jayme,
    You and the Hen Cam are how I start my day! I have cherished each post for what it gave that day- laughter, insight, thoughtfulness, friendship! Keep on posting what is on your heart, whether it be "new stuff" or a return to some old topics- that is what is speaking to all of us, LOUD AND CLEAR and we love it and you!

  28. Jayme, you could never be boring! I love reading about your chickens (miss them a bit), how you do things, your garden, cooking... all the things that make you "you". I'd miss your blog terribly if you decided to quit.

  29. Love your blog - anything you post about - I love it. Always enjoy the touching stories that include Aaron. You can always work part-time and if you don't like it, resign. You are in the driver's seat. Would miss your blog sooooooo much, but you have to do what is right for you.

  30. Hi Jayme,
    I always look forward to your blog no matter what it's about. It's always interesting and fun and I learn a lot from you.

    When I quit working a few years ago I told myself that my job now was to get healthy and I really wanted to do it before I turned 50 which is next Tuesday. Well, I've done it! Lost 110 pounds and I work out 4 - 5 times per week. That is my job now. When I worked full time I just didn't have the time to exercise as much and I really didn't have the time to cook healthy, fresh meals like I do now.

    I agree with you that it would be nice to have the extra money but I also realize that money isn't everything. The time my husband and I get to spend together is priceless.

    You keep up the great work just like you're doing! Love you!

  31. I am always checking to see if perhaps you have put up a new post. I also have chickens and a desire for a spiffy,little vintage camp trailer like you have. Your bread recipe fed some MaryJanes Farmgirls this summer.
    I stay home too and keep 2 little grandsons when their parents need me to.
    Always enjoy seeing and hearing about The Boy Child.
    Do what feels right for you and we will support you girl!

  32. OH SWEET & SPICY Jayme, I have heard this before, from my BFF since 5th grade..she lost 200# and felt she lost herself..the truth of the matter is you and she lived behind the weight...uncertain of yourself..Now you have no where to hide...You and only YOU ..can re-examine what you were hiding from and where you want to go from here..It's not easy...take it one day at a time..definately journal ..if on blog or a personal journal..what I'm trying to say is..Become the Person you were meant to be, without the struggles of others people life situations.. If your heart is at home don't think of it as not bringing home the bacon...I sometimes HATE women's lib crapola..your job is to save/keep as much of bacon as possibly by being thrifty, frugal etc to live within the means you have...It's NOT an insult to stay home!
    I'm 56 worked through all my childrens growing up years..HATED IT..MISSED they are grown with families of ther own..I stay home taking care of the HOME, while my hubby brings home the bacon and my job is to make that bacon last as long as possible...

  33. I always get excited when I see that you have posted a new blog! You make me laugh, cry and inspire me to do better! You feel like an old friend with that quirky sense of humor. People follow you because you are easy to like, you're honest and forthright! So stinkin funny and post some of the goofiest pictures.. So whatever your blog is about, I am sure you will have tons of followers!

  34. I like it all.

    Drivel. Drivel. Drivel.

    And where, may I ask, are those chicken notecards?


    I love thee to the ends of this Earth.


  35. Don't even think about pulling the plug on your blog! I enjoy your posts so much...even when I'm too busy to comment! I came across you when I was looking at blogs that had chickens and bees...but I found so much more! First of all, you are turning 50 this year...and so am December. I agree that it is a milestone. I don't really fear old age, but I do feel that I need to redefine me somehow. I love your posts that touch on that. I could say so much more, but I'll stop now. Keep blogging, even if you feel it is banal, or whatever...I appreciate it!!
    Hugs to you!!

  36. Are you kidding? I love your blog. God only knows how I found you. It must've had something to do with chickens. I'm a big poultry fan.

    I have a confession to make. I copied a picture of Squirrel a while back. It's right here next to my laptop. I look at that piccie every morning and 'smile'. Thanks for that.

    I have a Maxine graphic to send even though I think someone has probably already sent it to you. That's ok. I'm gonna send it anyway.

    Love your new look. Hope you love you too!! Hugz!!

  37. Please dont pull the plug!! I love reading your funny charming take on life. Try not to pressure youself I know its hard but we just love you being you talking about whatever you want to talk about :)

  38. When I first found your blog, I went through some of your posts and just laughed at everything. I think we're all a lot alike in many ways; it just feels good when people put themselves out there. I love to see what you're involved in. The work question ~ worked from home and in corporate world. Like Amy B, I believe my job will phase out in about a year, so I'm thinking of Plan B. Does the birthday have anything to do with it, you think? Debi

  39. I love, love, love your blog! I have to admit I get a little disappointed when there is not a daily blog to read, and I am not trying to make you feel Guilty. Oh how I hate that word...GUILTY! UGH....hate hate hate.

    And so thinks this is what you are every area now, right??? Blogging?? Working??? Oh come on! Don't give in to that nasty guilt....Do what you want to do, not what you think others want you to! If you don't want to work...then don't, if you don't want to blog...then don't....just be you and enjoy! Why do we fill our lives with so much obligation, ....relax and have fun, you lost all that weight so just be thankful and don't add any more weighty burdens to yourself.
    Just be you and do what you like to do.
    Take care and smile*

  40. I enjoy your posts what ever you decide to chat about. It's like talking to my sister. I have one sister (out of 3) that we can talk about nothing for an hour. and I LOVE it.
    Nothing/something it doesn't matter - it's life. Your writing is easy to read, funny, thoughtful and enjoyable. It's a rare talent. Congrats and thank you for sharing your many talents with us.

  41. Jayme,
    I read your blog to get an infusion of your wonderful sense of humor and to experience either a cultural, regional, or both, of your vernacular, example, "law". I've never heard that term before and find the use of it in your blogs very endearing and original. I also appreciate your honesty and self evaluation. Your blog feels as though you are relating to close friends about everyday things, like raising chickens, gardening, house chores, raising bees, making honey and laundry. Very much like conversations you have everyday. Your blog is not ordinary but extra-ordinary because you take risks totally putting yourself out there and your reward are the friends you've made along the way.

    Maybe some of the uncertain feelings you've been experiencing lately are related to your weight loss. Sounds like you are in perspective shift of how you see yourself. I've heard people who have lost a significant amount of weight say that their body has changed but their perception of themselves hasn't. They still see themselves as overweight.

    I don't know maybe with your new image and other changes you've recently made you are ready for something new to reflect your new and much calmer self. Maybe a new blog. Could be the CoopKeeper has run it's course and needs a redesign or a whole new blog. I have a few blogger friends stop one blog because it no longer reflects where they are in life and have designed a new blog.

    Whether to work or not. If you are happy and satisfied with staying at home then that's what you should do. However, maybe writing is in your future. I have often thought I could see you as a humorist writing about the quirkiness of every day life. You have such a unique way of expressing your thoughts about life that I keep coming back to get my CoopKeeper fix. For selfish reasons I hope you continue your blog but if not, well I'll have to go through withdrawals like all your devoted followers.

    Best of luck with your decision.


  42. I love your blog!! Your videos are great. I especially love the ones from the blizzard. I have watched them more than once and always laugh! I look forward to reading anything you write (wow, maybe I need to find something to do!!). Don't ever doubt yourself, you bring a smile to my day.

  43. your blather is music to my ears. whatever the blather is is of no matter...just you being you is all i need. xoxo
    p.s. i needs a visit and maybe a capital letter somewhere. nah.

  44. Jayme, I just like it all. I like all the drivel and you are just who you are, and that is refreshing.
    Just keep on doing what you are doing...being yourself! That is who we love!

  45. First off, congrats on such a huge accomplishment in losing unwanted pounds! You truly are an inspiration to so many! I think we are constantly evolving as time goes on so it's OK to kind of be in limbo right now!

    I will read your blog no matter what topic you choose to write about because I enjoy your openness and your style of writing. Law.

    As far as working... I am coming upon a year's anniversary of leaving the working world. Sometimes, as I struggle to pay the bills, I wonder if it was worth it. After much thought, my answer is always YES! My hubby is much happier having me home and I am much happier as a housewife because I actually ENJOY being a housewife! We are willing to do with less luxuries so that I can stay home. It's up to what you want and what makes you and Glenco happy!

  46. I know what the 7th of November means. It means that in just a couple of days from now it will have officially been one whole year since I drove all the way from Alabama to visit with you!

    That's a long time between two friends. As for your blog, I hope you stick around because that is the only way I get to sit a spell and visit. I like hearing, er reading your drivel.

  47. Keep - you couldn't be boring if you tried. But, I do think that if you get desperate, you could liven things up with a play by play of a Squirrel hell run to the West. Yes, it's true. I'm going to keep beating this dead horse until you show up on my doorstep.

  48. Honestly, I just can't get enough of you. I really love you, you have the personality and charisma of a movie star. I like it when you make a video, I like it when you give me housekeeping advice too. It's hard to find good cooking/house advice nowadays, everyone's being businesslike with business and housekeeping has gone by the wayside. I hardly know what to do with the career of Stay at Home mom. You encourage me to continue to do excellent in the things that no one seems to care about anymore.

  49. WIsh there were a like button for all the comments so far. I like your penny pinching ways, and the way you dive whole hog into everything you do. I like that you get up at the crack of dawn thirty and that you are able to make so many friends with people all across the country talking about "nothing". Those are my favorite parts of your blog.

  50. You look great! I made the decision to stay home one year ago! jan

  51. Honestly it's you that I come here to visit with. I probably like your cooking/home exploits the most but any chance to visit with you makes me happy.

  52. Doesn't matter what you write about. You always make me smile when I read whatever you are up to/thinking's all good. You might change your size, your life outlook or a lot of other things...but you are still essentially you. (hopefully we just all get a little more refined with all life's processing!). Not only am I writing this message to you from me, but also from my mother who loves your blog too! She's just not techie enough to know how to do the whole comment thing! Just your chicken picture at the very beginning was enough to make her laugh! Just write what you want, when you want and I am sure all us loyal followers will be eagerly waiting to see what is up with you next!

  53. The best part of change is it gives you a chance to reassess where you are and where you want to go. When everything is the same we don't think about those things--we just keep on keeping on--but when the pot is shaken up we have new eyes to see. I think you are in a great place and look forward to seeing and hearing the paths you'll choose.

  54. Love to hear about your chickens. It's why I first started reading. Also, like the occasional video you would post on doing something around the house. But it's your humor and writing about a variety of things that keep me reading. Oh, and I forgot, love hearing about your nephew.

  55. Lawd, you is funny! Don't you dare succumb to giving up this blogging biz. I love reading your blog.
    And Jayme,
    You is smart.
    You is kind.
    You is important.

  56. You just never cease to crack me up! What's so funny is that I can personally relate to almost everything you've said. I struggle with working or not ( I hate the thought of missing time with my sister or missing out on seeing my grand babies doing something amazingly precious). I have lost 60 lbs and feel a great sense of calm. Yet my hormones get the best of me at times! I guess we women are all alike in some ways! Please don't ever think about quitting your blog! It will make us all so sad. We need to hear your drivel! ;-)

  57. Hey girlfriend I've never met in person,
    I must say I blog a lot and love each and everyone of the blogs I read but, when I started reading yours, OMG you make me laugh out loud all by myself. I truly don't care what you blog about that's up to you just please do not quit! Several of yours I've showed my friends and family cause too funny not to..hanging with Helen, last hangover. Then there are the ones that touch me very heart...telling a stranger her yard was beautiful, the apple tree and then there is your weight loss journey: you are inspiring and so truthful and honest I am forever your follower. Deb in Viola


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