My Long Term Plan

Today’s guest post comes from Sherrilee

I am not a big picture person. I appreciate that there are big picture people but I don’t aspire to be one of them. I like to do; I like to make lists and cross things off. Short range goals – sign me up. Long range goals – not so much.

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I live on a hill and I don’t like to cut the grass that much. In addition I’m not crazy about the idea of “lawn”, especially if it involves chemicals. So about 12 years ago I decided that I wanted less grass and more flowers, but my budget didn’t stretch too far at the nursery. So, even though it’s not what you would expect, I made a 15-year plan. It’s a pretty simple plan. Every year I add a little bit more, thin out a little bit more and move a little bit more. That’s the extent of the plan; I don’t have any layouts, spreadsheets or lists. Every spring I walk through Bachmans and Tangletown Gardens and pick out a few things. I often don’t even decide where any of these items will go until I get home. I’m particularly fond of lilies, irises and peonies, but I occasionally branch out. I bought 2 sedum from a guy selling plants off the back of his truck in Rogers; I got a pigsqueak after seeing it at a friend’s house.

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The front yard is farther along than the back – mostly because of dogs. They do a number on any landscaping. I eventually want a fountain (I have an artist friend who will be working on this with me) and a wooden lighthouse (about 4 feet high would be good). The fire pit and the wooden swing are in place already. I’m thinking a nice big deck as well, but I might have to fundraise for that!

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These days my yard is a riot of color every spring and summer and mowing takes about ¼ of the time it used to. When I pull up in my driveway or come around the corner from a walk I think “wow, whose great yard is that?” Then I happily think “it’s mine”. My long term plan is working out!

What’s one of your long-range goals?

106 thoughts on “My Long Term Plan”

  1. nice sherrilee
    I will add to it as the weekend goes on but now is a good time to mention I will be leaving my eden prairie Hosta garden and am looking for foster homes for a couple hundred hosta. I am assuming I will have to find 10 or 12 locations to relocate them to and then check back in a couple years to retrieve them
    if any baboons want to help in the cause or know anyone who has space I would appreciate it
    Sherrilee I have a bunch of the old classic peonies too 15 or so I would guess. that 20 year hole has at most a 10 year growth but they sure are nice in may. mostly white with some reds for balance

    I’m a big picture guy and my big picture on this house didn’t work out. we are going to be finding a bandaid to live in until my sins have been accounted for. doing has it’s merits. my wife is a doer my big picture style drives her nuts
    I can’t imagine why

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I think that doers are just impatient types. We want to see change/action and we want to see it now! So discussions of what could be or what might be are hard for us to deal with. But I realized a long time ago that without big picture folks, we doers don’t have anything to do. And with us doers, the big picture folks are at a loss as well.

      Liked by 2 people

    2. Oh and in in “doer” fashion, just let me know when you need me to show up with my garden gloves and my shovel!

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      1. VS- my Japanese iris needs dividing. Do you want some? Thinking this should be done this fall but will happily stand corrected.

        I’ve also got raspberry plants for anyone in need, although it seems most Baboons are well supplied.

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        1. Sorrt tim, second crop is just in the bud stage at my house. Basil is $1for a big bunch at the Farmer’s Market. My short term plan is to invest maybe $10 in my future pesto happiness. I can’t seem to grow it abundantly.

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        1. tomorrows show for daughter at ctc is at 1 so i should be home 4 ish if that works better

          i have an extra ticket for spring awakening at ctc stage at 3 today
          it is the story of youth in the 1890 dealing with sexuality abuse and all around adolescent challanges done to wonderful music. alos at 7 tonight and 1 tomorrow. i think its 10 bucks with out the freebie. great show. daughter has an exsamle role with some fun dance and cameo stuff.

          Liked by 1 person

        2. Spring Awakening is a good, powerful show. Good, but, dark and yet, deals with important issues.
          I don’t know anything about this production. What role is Daughter, tim?

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        3. So I’m trying to figure out which reply goes to which comment – tim, are we having a hosta removal gathering tomorrow after 4 p.m. at your house?????

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        4. it is a play with 10 boys and 10 girls roles. 2 girls roles have parts that are singing relevant parts. daughter got a mans part but she is the opera soprano kind of theatre voice so they didnt use her to sing. they gave her a dance solo which was nice because she is not very practiced in dance. it gave her a chance to add that to her resume and bag of tricks and then they gave her the abortionists role as a cameo with appearance for 2 minutes and lines like. “come with me” and “we do the best we can”

          the guy and girl who star do a wonderful job and it gives 6 or 7 others a chance to shine. i told daughter she just hooked up with the show that had no role for her. they wanted girls with burley voices for the men roles (they have 17 girls and 3 guys) whoops 4 but the 4th is gender fluid (new term for me)

          it is a wonderful show and now i have seen it a couple of times and the point really comes across to the young people. it makes the parents uncomfortable and the youth cheer. its really strong and direct in its treatment of sex homosexuality abuse suicide and peer pressure the dark side the hopeful side the pointed side. the kids all want their parents to see it and the parents seem to want to turn and run away form the uncomfortable topics uncovered.
          great show
          last performance tomorrow (sunday) at 1

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        5. whoops
          just found out daughter is performing at target field after show ends so I won’t be home til late. another time works better. I’ll contact vs directly to be sure .

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  2. I am a beer and short planner, a legacy of a farm childhood. One of my strengths is seeing a large goal and dividing it into steps. It was a good skill to have when I wrote all my own instructional materials. A school year is like that.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. I do not really have long term goals. Now it is get through this day. Pay the bills, keep track of drugs and refills. I realize from this question that I miss the process of big goals and project planning.
    The Two Harbors fog horn is blowing outside.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Just got back from a wedding in duluth, and yes sirree bob, there is fog. Stopped at the end of park point on the way out of town and couldn’t see any other shore except the one we were standing on. It felt like we were on standing on a very remote island in a very large lake or ocean with no other land in sight. Very foggy. Heard the fog horn there, too.

        Liked by 2 people

    1. if you’d like involvement on one of my two projects I could give you a facet or two to choose from on long term development
      as you are able to pick away at it would likely be faster than I could react so it might work for both of us

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  4. Good morning. I guess I am not big on long range planning and not so much a doer. I just try to keep moving forward and that doesn’t always work. An exception is the plan for our lawn. It isn’t my plan. I got help from a professional and I am slowly getting it done.

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    1. I think I’m with you, Jim. The longer term my plans are, the less likely that they will pan out. Some near-term projects get done, but at a snail’s pace.

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  5. I’m into the big picture. I love plotting, planning, researching, experimenting.

    Running day-to-day life simultaneously is not one of my gifts.

    The big plan has always been to move to the Island. Land has been purchased and an income stream that is pretty independent of location is shaping up nicely. Once the s&h graduates, we will have no strong reason to stay in this house.

    I’ve dabbled in researching sustainability and homesteading. I have lists upon lists. Recent events have been a real kick in the pants get doing.

    Liked by 1 person

        1. Have not designed the house yet and the geology of the Island is a little weird, being essentially muck shoved up from the bottom of Superior by a glacier. (Also why you don’t have a septic field up there- probably tmi to give further info).

          There is an Island family that has been doing this work forever, that’s who you call. Current thinking is to explore selling the land and getting a house to start with. We are right here for at least 2 more years.

          Started that conversation today….

          Liked by 1 person

        2. Composting toilet is already on the list. Need to work on researching grey water technology up there. I don’t think the well drilling will be optional.

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        3. rain wart and snow melt in fresh water cistern and gray water cistern for recyclable water would be the envy of all on the island
          shall we show them how to do it? maybe even lame water through a filter would be an option. should be possible just a matter of affordability
          remind me when you are ready on composts le toilet. I have a comnection with the guy who sells the. maybe we can get a demo
          sales sample

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  6. my challenge is the big picture stuff I do needs the planners up he ying yang
    I have doug an he is exhausted
    we have been working on two projects that are both coming to fruition right now and it’s exciting but exhausting
    I need more doers and more and more.
    it’s part of the big picture

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  7. What constitutes long term planning? I hope to retire in 6 years. Is that long or short? Some days it feels like eternity. Writing it here makes it sound short. Our plans for the yard are fluid and ever changing. We plan to enlarge and replant the strawberry bed, move around some hydrangeas, create a brick walkway where no grass will grow because of too much shade. We still wait for the cement guys to come and pour new front steps and remove side walk.

    Gorgeous flowers, VS.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks. I take the pictures because I have a girlfriend at work who likes to see them. Last week I was taking a couple in the morning and my neighbor across the street yelled over that my flowers look great. I’m still basking!

      Liked by 2 people

  8. I’m most definitely a big picture person, too many details bore me to tears. However, I’ve never thought of big picture in terms of long-range vs short range planning. These days I don’t even buy green bananas!

    Liked by 3 people

    1. ive gotten good at impromptu banana bread when the desire wears out. we tend to but the fruit of the moment because when its not in its out. bananas go fast until they dont then they become banana bread

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  9. Today I am having difficulty with any sort of planning – long or short. My plan for the day had been to repaint some furniture, but requires me being outdoors (since we don’t have room indoors except in the living room…and I’d rather not fill the living room with the project and its smell). We have already had some rain come through and it looks like we are in for more. Other project is also an outdoor project. Finding it difficult to get motivated to work on any of the indoor tasks. Thinking this might be a day to laze on the couch and nibble on bon bons. That seems a good-for-the-soul short term goal.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Well, not bon bons as such, but I have leftover angel food cake and apricot ice box cake from two different events earlier in the week. Even have a few strawberries that I could put on the angel food cake. And if I get truly motivated, I could dig out a box of Girl Scout cookies from the basement freezer…

        Liked by 1 person

        1. I just took Fresh Peach Cake out of the oven. Smells heavenly. New recipe that called for peach schnapps of all things. Hope it’s a good recipe so I’ll have a use for the rest of the bottle!

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  10. Husband and I are doing some planning for meals we volunteered to serve to 30 people. I am a member of the Western ND ELCA committee charged with approving and supporting candidates from our synod who want to be rostered leaders in the church (pastors, diaconal ministers, associates in ministry, etc.) and we are having a two day retreat for our candidates, along with the bishop, synod staff, other committee members, and some seminary faculty. We need to make a Friday night supper, and Saturday breakfast, and lunch for these folks at the Badlands Bible Camp in Medora. We will have a burger bar on Friday night, Egg bakes and pastries for breakfast, and barbecued brisket, Butter Chicken Curry, Naan, and curried vegetables for lunch. We also will have snacks and other things for people to nosh on. Much of this we are preparing ahead of time and freezing. The burgers are coming from a rancher in Ludlow, SD, who is a parishioner of one of the committee members. The pastor will connect with the rancher’s wife in a little town just over the border, and then she will bring the burgers to the camp with her. This takes some planning. This weekend i am making some pastries and the chicken curry to freeze. Next weekend husband grills the brisket. The egg bakes will be assembled on the Friday night of the retreat. Everything else like potato salad, coleslaw, and desserts will get made sometime the week of the retreat.

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        1. Checked and my roommate served on that committee for six years maybe 15 years ago but never got to go to Medora.

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  11. My idea of a long term plan is figuring out when we should mow the meadow, today or tomorrow? Weather looks a little better tomorrow. We are having a small circle dance potluck here Sunday eve, and how do I decide what food to make? Hardest thing about the France trip was making all those crucial logistical decisions so far in advance…

    I do know next year we will plant more of what the woodchuck doesn’t seem to like, and less of what s/he does.

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  12. What kind of planner am I? The perfect answer was given in one of my favorite movies, Tremors. Earl and Val are low-rent handymen who also drive the honey wagon. At one point Earl accuses Val of not thinking about the big picture:

    “Damn it Valentine, you never plan ahead, you never take the long view, I mean here it is Monday and I’m already thinking of Wednesday… It is Monday right?”

    Liked by 2 people

  13. I was so excited! I just received notification in the mail that I am the second prize winner of Publishers Clearing House annual summer giveaway sweepstakes. All I have to do to claim my $1,500,000.00 cash prize is to call Mr. Richard Banks at 1-800-616-8681 and give him my claim number.

    After buying husband a motor home for his upcoming camping trip with an old friend from Denmark, I was planning on calling tim to ask if $100,000 would help him stay in his home.

    Then I thought I had better check if there are any PCH scams, and wouldn’t you know it, there are. So much for planning to help out a friend. It sure was fun while it lasted.

    Liked by 2 people

  14. OT == Blevin’s Book Club is next Sunday, the 16th. (More votes for the 16th). Minnehaha Falls (since this is where we met the first time, five years ago!) I Know This Much is True by Wally Lamb and
    Me Talk Pretty One Day
    by David Sedaris.

    Did we talk about a back-up location if the weather stinks?

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        1. You’re right; he’s got that look about him. Especially in the clip from Jimmy Fallon.

          I liked his dance moves, too!

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  15. I just realized that I posted on yesterday’s story rather than today’s! As to planning, I’ve spent the last month drawing to scale room arrangements, shopping online and in stores to turn my den into a master bedroom. My kids are already voicing concerns that I might fall down the stairs going up to my bedroom. My doctors have told me for years that I need an adjustable bed due to my acid reflux attacks.

    I finally caved – and, I know I’ll love it BUT this means I’ll be in bed almost every waking hour since my erstwhile den contains every last thing I need: TV, computer, Iphone, magazines, etc, etc. I rarely use the rest of the cottage but at least have slept in a different room. At first, I grieved the loss of sleeping upstairs, a lake-facing room. Then, I realized that I still have that option! Duh.

    This is the first major change I’ve made since moving in here 15 years ago. A client, upon learning about this transition, said, “Oh – you’re getting a hospital bed”. All of a sudden, I thought of hospice patients whose family brings in a hospital bed. I told him, “Please don’t say that again”.

    My kids are pulling together to help make this real. Painting ceilings, making a TV box to put between the TV and the nightstand it’ll sit on, and moving furniture. I’m excited for the final result, but, as I’ve written, this will mean being in bed most waking hours.

    Liked by 1 person

  16. OT – This is a question for anyone tech savvy. For about nine months now, I’ve been getting intermittent phone calls (on my land line, if that makes any difference) that show up on the caller ID as having originated from our own phone. Even shows husband’s name. There’s never anyone on the line when I answer. Tonight I got a call from Ramsey County, the police inquiring if I everything was alright, they had just received a 911 call from our number. I was home alone at the time, and had not placed that call. Any ideas on how that could happen?

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    1. PJ, I’m not tech savvy, but I had a similar problem when I had qwest (which is now century link, correct?) for the landline. The phone often didn’t work when it stormed…and it would call 911 by itself in the middle of the night on some stormy nights. And it would call 411, which would give us a big bill. Qwest customer service wasn’t very helpful (“Please call us when your phone isn’t working so we can check the problem” and at the time nobody in the household had cell phones. Not to mention, how were we to know when the phone wasn’t working in the middle of the night?) At one point they dismissed the 411 charges, but told us they would never do it again. The problem was not resolvable, so I switched to Ooma for my landline and haven’t had any problems since.

      It was a very strange problem and perhaps your problem isn’t related, but I offer you my experience in case it helps you in some way.

      Liked by 1 person

    2. think id call the telephone company and tell them to come up with the answer before you go on the evening news talking about your scary land line.
      there are only a couple left in saint paul and if they get wind of this that will be it for ma bell. verizion will own it all.
      that is very odd for sure. ill bet they will remember if they heard that one beore and know what to do about it. or they will run away and deny deny deny

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    3. I would suspect the problem is in a phone within the house. Do you have a cordless phone? They can sometimes do weird things when the battery is failing, especially the older phones. A computer modem that is malfunctioning could also cause a problem.

      I would try getting a cheap phone from a thrift store for each phone you have in the house. Also replace the wire that goes from the wall to the phone. Then replace any splitters you have on the phone lines, and the filter on the data line. See if it keeps happening. It’s more expensive to replace the modem, so I’d check everything else first.

      How long have you had the modem? They do fail sometimes. I’ve been told that in older houses problems can be caused by poor wiring in the electrical outlet that the modem’s power supply is plugged into. If you have a continuity tester, check that.

      The St. Vincent de Paul store has a bin of phone lines in the back room. I always keep a couple of spares in the hardware drawer.

      The next thing to try would be to disconnect the entire house and run your phone and run a new line into the house from your network interface box through a door or window. If you find the problem happens with this setup, it either has to be one of the devices you’ve got plugged into that line, or it is the phone company’s problem. It is helpful, when talking to the phone company, to have tried this. It eliminates the possibility that the cause is some random wire someplace in the basement that has gotten wet or frayed or something.

      Liked by 3 people

        1. I had a work-from home job a number of years ago that required a very reliable phone and computer setup, so that I could receive calls from the company’s phone system and enter data in real time. This made the limitations of the phone system in my antique house glaringly obvious. I had help and coaching from two irreplaceable people when I tackled the problem. One was Dean, the tech guy at my ISP. He recommended bypassing all the old wiring and installing a new modular wall socket with CAT-5 wiring direct from the network interface box. Not easy, but still much easier than trying to troubleshoot each existing wire in the house. I accomplished this with the help of Tim, the electrical guy at Home Depot on South Robert. I described the project and he picked out all the pieces I’d need and opened up the packages and showed me in detail – the blue wire goes here and the orange one goes there – and between the two gurus I was able to get my computer and phone working perfectly. Then I located the wiring to each of the old modular plugs and spliced them in one by one. None of those caused any difficulties, so whatever problems I was having seemed to have been confined to the wire that ran from the outside of the house through a basement window frame and tacked along the basement ceiling. It is still there, disconnected. It probably dates to the telephone system’s infancy.

          I found the whole process rather fascinating. Probably because I was successful.

          Liked by 3 people

      1. This is all very interesting, Linda. We only have one landline left in the house. And I do have a phone out in the shop.
        20 years ago, there was a phone in the barn, plus I added one in the milk house and we had 3 in the house and then the one in the shop got added.
        The lines to the barn and shop came out of a riser box in the yard — which is against the old MaBell policy. All extra phones were supposed to come off the house box.
        And I think all the phone repair people were helpful even while they were telling me ‘this is outside our repair coverage’ they still fixed it and left me extra wire or gave me parts.

        Thanks for these tips!

        Liked by 1 person

    4. We’ve had a couple calls in the last year when the caller ID showed our home phone. We were not home to answer anyway, just saw it later.
      But no calls out that I’m aware of and the phone works fine.
      We are also on Qwest.
      Very interesting.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. I have been home to answer a couple of the calls we have gotten like that – once it was dead air, another time it was a clearly pre-recorded message letting me know I had won a fabulous contest and I should wait on the line to claim it (um, no). For a year or so we were a “Nielsen” house, so had an extra box connected to the tv and cable that would collect data and phone home periodically – was weird being home (and awake) when that happened as it would sometimes ring back once like we were calling ourselves. We haven’t had the house call 911, though.

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  17. Planning like mad this afternoon. Cooking for the church retreat. I am making the butter chicken, husband is making the curried veggies. We have to share pots and pans, and we both need the oven but i need to put my tandoor stone in a cold oven and then heat the oven, since the stone will crack of it is put in a hot oven, so we are planning and negotiating who gets what when. What a good thing we are cooking all this ahead of time.

    Liked by 3 people

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