Sunday, January 22, 2017

Lately

Reading/listening to/watching: listened and finished "The Killing Season" and started "Before I Fall" by Lauren Oliver. Read (and finished) "The Things We Wish Were True". Read (and finished) "A Quiet Life In The Country" by T E Kinsey (complete fluff, but completely enjoyable angliophilic fluff!) and downloaded the next in the series for later. Started J.R.R. Tolkien's "Letters From Father Christmas" and enjoyed it so much I decided to order a hardcopy to keep (and will most likely gift several copies next Christmas, as well). It loses something in digital format. Read and finished "Maude" by Donna Mabry, by total coincidence, on the day of the woman's march, which was at once a heartbreaking and encouraging perspective - so sad to see how much talent has been wasted by society's devaluation of women, but wonderful to see how far we've come (even if we're definitely not there yet!).

Eating: nothing exciting. Yogurt and fruit (even though I'm trying to cut down on dairy, I feel good on days when I eat it so I'm not too worried). Apples (I wanted some honeycrisp but they were $2.69/pound - not in the budget with my hours slashed at work - so I compromised with some fujis. I forgot how much I like apples). Still religiously drinking kombucha and taking apple cider vinegar and coconut oil and I'm still feeling good. Trying to eat more leafy greens. Keep trying to remember to buy oranges. I found a weird nitrogen - infused coffee at Target last night and Maggie and I tried it this morning; it came in a sofa can, and the directions said to shake it and then pour it. It was too acidic for me to really enjoy (although Maggie liked it) but it was sort of fun as an experience. ;) Sous vide egg bites on the Starbucks patio as a late brunch with my dad.

Celebrating: the triplet's fourth birthday. A little mournful because they're getting SO BIG and I remember when they were still my tiny babies and I rocked them to sleep every night and sang them each their own lullaby song, but I do dearly love watching them become their own people, too. I took them out to lunch at CFA and baked them 2 dairy and gluten free cakes for their party (as the family is trying to go df/gf) as well as frosting and felt extremely accomplished.

Accomplishing: doing okay at keeping the house cleanish (#unimpressivegoals). Interviewed a new coach, which is awesome because we're approaching maxed out and I need some spare hands. Need to accomplish laundry. Made taco meat in the crockpot to freeze for easy lunches.

Happy about: the thank-you note Mags and I got in the mail from Q (3 years old). Maggie called to read me the note while I was still at work, stressing over non - dairy frosting that wasn't turning out at all, and our conversation went like this:
Maggie: It says, "Dear Sarah and Maggie, I love you! I love the book! Goodbye! Get me a tomato for next Christmas!"
Long pause.
Me: You're sure it says tomato?
Maggie: Positive.
Me: You're sure you're not misreading it?
Maggie: It's very clear. Tomato.
Upon hearing this, I laughed until I cried, bent over in the kitchen while the mixer beat my poor sad failing frosting over my head. A moment later DB got home from work and wanted to know what was so funny. I relayed the story and he died, too. ;) (For the record, I went over to see the note when I got home, and it does VERY CLEARLY say tomato. I can't wait to hear the story! )

Looking forward to: warmer weather. My hours at work going back to normal (bleh).

Friday, January 13, 2017

This Week

- Celebrating my dad's birthday (I gave him "The Girl On The Train" because it was easily my favorite book of 2016, and I can't wait to see what he thinks). Dinner another night with my extended family at my grandparent's house. I have spent so much time with my loved ones in the last few weeks, and it's been wonderful.

- I finished "The Last Battle" and now I'm listening to "The Killing Season" by Alex French, narrated by David Drummond. Still working on "The Art of Work."

- Eating cinnamon pecans that Amy bought and shared and I loved so much I went and bought my own bag; Indian butter chicken (one of the meals I made and froze during my holiday cooking spree); NOT drinking the Aquafina brand seltzer water I bought because it was on sale and only later realized it had sugar added - so mad at this perversion of seltzer water!

- Taking these past couple days to focus on being in the moment with the kids, and getting to spend lots of time in snuggling and playing and making art and reading out loud. We started Pippi Longstocking and they seem to like it. Also played three rounds of the new educational "Wash My Underpants" game I bought at Target (who names these things?!).

- Still drinking my kombucha and green juice and taking apple cider vinegar and feeling good. I bought a new kind of vegan protein powder to start using again. Also coconut oil tablets to add to my routine (but I also need to buy the real thing).

- I did an excellent job of keeping the house clean this week. :) And I managed to clean out, wipe down, and vacuum the car this week too! I cleaned the boy's cages tonight,  so my housekeeping chores are done for the weekend!

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Just Before The Start

I was originally supposed to go back to work on Monday; instead, the kids (and their parents) went on an impromptu vacation, and my week off (which had pretty much become three, when all was said and done) carried on into another.

It's been really amazing.

I'm battling quite a bit of guilt for even voicing this, because who gets to take this much time off? No one I know!  But it's been amazing.

Physically, I have slept (oh my gosh I've slept and slept and slept) and I have healed. I started to feel really good last week, but I didn't realize exactly how good until I realized that the heaviness and tenderness in my wonky ear (which I had assumed was new scar tissue since it had been going on since my last ear infection back in October) had disappeared. My lymph nodes along the right side of my face had had hard lumps in them since the last infection, and I realized this week that they were gone, too. I've been exposed to the stomach flu, to colds and crap, and I haven't gotten anything. It's been a long time since I had am allergic reaction to something (which was happening with scary frequency and intensity in the weeks leading up to Christmas). Basically, in the last few months I've felt like I was falling apart, and now I feel like I've got my feet back under me.

Not so physically, I've had time to be around my loved ones, and to scribble and think and to contemplate life and evaluate how well it's working for me, and identify some areas that aren't working as well. :/ Time to think about some changes I want/need to make in the future. Time to think about changes I can make right now.

Tomorrow, my kids come home. It'll be an early morning, my first in days, and I'm so ready. I spent the night in, puttering, tidying, making sure my life canvas was primed and fresh for tomorrow.

I'm excited to have a few days before school starts again to just be present with my babies - to wrap them up in my arms and remind us both how much we are loved.

Monday, January 9, 2017

Cold

I can feel the cold
seeping through the walls
of this tiny house.
The thermostat
says that the temperature inside
has not wavered
but I can feel the cold outside
sense it
in some way I cannot quite articulate.

Friday, January 6, 2017

Life, Lately

Accomplishing: a good cleaning/organizing/decluttering from one end of the trailer to the next, every square inch, including storage compartments (it took a little over eight hours as opposed to the weeks it took me this summer when I got rid of 40% of my belongings. Took two trash bags to the thrift store, which I thought was pretty decent). Did a ton of cooking and put away a freezer full of meals for easy to grab lunches - barbecue chicken with potatoes, shredded plain chicken, ham and beans, ham soup, quinoa, and Indian butter chicken. Hung my magnetic knife rack (what, six months after I bought it?). Went to Ikea to buy a sofa after mine broke last month, wasn't impressed with the one I'd picked out online, and went home empty handed to keep saving for a (much more expensive) one I fell in love with. Need to accomplish some laundry before I run out of clothes. Still working on a new budget for this year. Working on skits for Cris.

Eating/drinking: kombucha, apple cider vinegar, green juice (and starting to feel really good, better than I've felt in MONTHS). Bought some bone broth that I'll start drinking tomorrow (it's supposed to be amazing for healing your gut!). A Cascara latte from Starbucks (I liked it, but then I've always liked fruity coffees). Hot chocolate with marshmallows instead of my usual coffee. Chocolate tomatoes I brought home from Wegmans (oh, Wegmans, how I love thee!). Sushi with Mags and Cris.

Diffusing: my new favorite blend - bergamot, black pepper, and orange. I put away the pine oil for next year. I added a few drops of peppermint oil to my facial moisturizer and my dry flaky skin has disappeared.

Reading/listening/Watching: The Last Battle by CS Lewis, read by Patrick Stewart (and chosen mostly for that reason). The Art of Work by Jeff Goins. The Librarians series that I liked so much,  I pre-ordered the newest season. ;)

Enjoying: sleeping in and taking naps (don't hate me). Spending time with siblings when they were home from college, especially my future brother in law. Lots of downtime to putter and accomplish and think. Being snowed in with no place I have to go. Swims at the local pool with Ruth, who never ceases to surprise me. :)

Looking forward to: spring (already). The triplets and M coming home this week (I miss my kiddos!). Swim starting up again. Getting back into the normal routine of life.

Sunday, January 1, 2017

Winter Bucket List 2017

*1. Go to bed early
2. Go stargazing
3. Start a reading list - one fiction book (Audible), one nonfiction (Amazon Prime Reader) each month
*4. Clean out and wash the car
*5. Go see a movie
6. Go to the theater
7. Start a summer vacation fund
8. Drink kombucha
9. Start swimming laps again
*10. Mini road trip with Cris and Mags
*11. Try a Cascara latte
12. Have a photo shoot with the kids
13. Finish the backsplash
*14. Make soup in the crockpot
*15. Order a new essential oil
16. Go dancing
17. Eat citrus fruit
18. Have friends over
19. Get a pedicure
20. Try a new escape room
21. Blog regularly
22. Send a care package to the college siblings

Sunday, December 18, 2016

Things

Things I'm really thankful for tonight:

That my place is warm. Delightfully, luxuriously warm. The past few days of cold temps meant that even going full blast, the place was chilly,  even by my standards. I came home on Thursday night and ended up going to sleep dressed almost as heavily as I had gone to work that morning, hat and all. The poor heating system just couldn't keep up. I woke up this morning and my front steps were encased in ice, but by noon the sun was out and everyrhing had melted, and in face the temperature will continue to rise throughout the night.  So very thankful.

Also thankful that there was no damage to my pipes when they froze earlier this week, nor to my hot water heater. I would have dealt, but I'm really thankful I didn't have to.

There's a huge stack of (newly wrapped!) presents taking up much of my couch now, and I am so, so thankful for everything it represents - the wonderful people in my life to whom all these presents are headed, and the fact that I'm in a place in my life right now where I'm able to give gifts.

I am healthy right now and I'm so, so, so thankful. I feel like I've been sick or recovering for most of the past three months - recurring infections, two rounds of antibiotics, trying to recover from the antibiotics as much as from the infections, and dealing with a bunch of issues after each sickness because my body is apparently just out of whack. I thought for sure I'd end up doing a third round earlier this week when I woke to my ear filled with fluid again, but I was able to head it off early and seem to have escaped.

Thankful for some time off - a day now, and several coming up in a couple of weeks - and a perceptible shift in pace. Wrapping up school with M and the triplets for the year, marking off the last few swim classes, finishing up the tasks that have to be done. Getting a chance to sleep for a few hours today,  in the middle of the day, because I was tired and there was nothing left that absolutely had to be done that minute.