a girl and her boy

. daily life : wool obsession : bibliomania : living on purpose .

Tag Archives: changes

Discovery: Gluten-free Girl.

While poking around for gluten-free recipes today, I discovered the website Gluten-Free Girl and The Chef that offers great recipes and much inspiration.

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Bits and Pieces

cozied up at home

I feel like writing today. It’s been a while.

It’s a chilly, grey, rainy day here on the north shore and my thoughts have turned to warmth and comfort. I pulled out a sweater from the tub I hauled down to the basement a month ago, slipped into some jeans, wrapped a scarf around my neck and settled into a book first thing this morning. It has been a while since the house has been quiet like this for quiet reflection and reading. I sipped on coffee made with lowfat milk and honey in my new Emerson mug. Perfect.

the house I rented in Maine

new transitions

My thoughts drifted back to autumns and winters past, the little comforts for chill days, and how different my present is, and how much greater the difference will be in five weeks. I went from renting a house in rural Maine were I chopped and split and hauled my own fire wood to soon living in an apartment building in the up-and-coming part of Boston with amenities I never dreamed of having at my finger tips. Worlds apart.

the roof deck of my new home

In Maine, I had organic farms and farm stands a few streets away, chickens in my back yard that ate bugs off my herbs and vegetables, and fruit trees. I was blessed with an abundance of food that could easily be traced to its roots. Boston has Whole Foods, Trader Joe’s, and farmers’ markets, too, but it’s different. I’m not sure which I preferred. Maine was wonderful, but living in Boston where I will be commuting to gather groceries by means of public transit will be a new and interesting experience. Maintaining my organic, green, healthy lifestyle in 750 square foot apartment in Boston has given me a new focus for blog writing.

I look forward to the new experience of getting on the silver line and having time to think and observe while going to gather food. I look forward to the bustling farmers’ market full of new and wonderful things. And I look forward to a new opportunity to start fresh and make more adjustments in my diet for a healthier life. This whole experience will be new. And I look forward to the challenges and opportunities it presents.

reading

I curled up with The Eyre Affair, a novel on loan from my friend Jose. I’m working on zipping through so I can return it to him at his farewell party in two weeks. I inadvertently slammed the book when I last saw him at a gaming event by saying something to the effect of I’m in the middle of a bunch of books right now and haven’t had a chance to finish it yet to which he replied something to the effect of so there are a bunch of books you like better than this one. So I’m trying to make up for it by actually finishing the book and coming up with an honest review of it.

I’ve been in a book gathering mood of late and have picked up the first four books of The Dark Tower, of which I’m in the middle of book two, an annotated complete works of Milton, the Divine Comedy, and the new instant classics of Little Women and Werewolves as well as Pride and Prejudice and Zombies. I’ll never have enough books. I’m doomed to living in a book-lined home.

hand and home crafts

Nothing much going on with needle crafts such as cross-stitching or knitting. Per usual, I have a ton of UFOs sitting around that need some attention. The hexacomb cardigan has been set aside until I have an opportunity to fix some errors using EZ’s “no tears” method. The hexacomb pattern became a spiral when I was under the influence of Vicodin. I haven’t had the spirit to fix it since I discovered the error.

gaming and geekery

I picked up copies of Final Fantasy X and Final Fantasy XII this weekend. I look forward to settling in and playing them through this summer. I also picked up the first volume of some comics:  Lenore, The Wizard of Oz, and The Dark Tower. I cannot wait to purchase the whole of each.

That’s what I’m up to and some of what I’ve been thinking about. I hope all is well with you!

Much love. Black Sheep.

There is no try.

Round two.

Okay. I wasn’t done. Remember that fear I mentioned? Well, it got the better of me and I stopped writing before I got to what I really wanted to say and what I was really feeling.

I am going to stop looking for ways out, for back doors, for escape routes.

And that’s what I’m *really* tired of. My habit of looking for a reason ahead of time why something won’t work so I can shrug my shoulders and say, “I tried. But….”

No more BUTS. No more TRIED.

That’s the circle, the cycle, I’ve been stuck in.

Anytime I find something that really has the power to change me for the better, I RUN from it. And I know why, I have a whole history of explanations, but I’m so tired of it ruling my life.

It’s my life.

The old habits got me here. They won’t get me out. Time for new ones.

I already overhauled a lot of my life this last year. And I should nod to the HUGE changes and progress I’ve made. It’s time to do some fine tuning now.

I am the luckiest.

As Ben Folds puts it, I’m the luckiest.

On my way home from tutoring last night, I called AT because I knew he’d probably be free, and would appreciate the story I had to share regarding a conversation I had with my student’s father after the session ended (short story there:  Me:  “This tool saves trees!”  Father:  “I don’t care about the trees, they’re a crop to make money off of,” and, “It must rankle you that global warming was disproved, huh.” *growl*) and we ended up on the phone for close to an hour. We talked just like we did before the separation, except we’re not “together” anymore. It was awesome.

It took a while for our communication to become free and easy after the separation, mostly because we feared hurting each other with news of our growth and adventures. We both moved on quickly, and began dating other people within a few months. Neither of us said anything about dating other people for a while because, well, we felt guilty about it. (Shouldn’t we? I mean, we were together for 6 years. Wouldn’t moving on quickly seem to say that it meant nothing?)

We both realized that though our relationship was *good*, and we were both content and committed, we weren’t as happy as we could be. And the love we gave each other was the most either of us had ever received from anyone before in our lives. When I woke up one morning last winter and realized that I needed something more and that I needed to move on, I thought I was being self-destructive “throwing away” the best thing I’ve ever had.

After our time apart, and growing as individuals, and dating others, we realized that we are both incredibly happy with our new lives. I am with a man that makes me incredibly happy. I feel fulfilled and enthusiastic about life. And AT found someone who makes him feel the same way. And we are still friends; not just friends, but best friends.

How many people can say that their ex-spouse is still one of their best friends?

Back to Blogging

That 2 month hiatus did me good, and saved this space from becoming LiveJournal-esque, y’know, uber-emo and whiny. Stepping away from the keyboard allowed me to put my head down and push hard to get through the blocks. In the last two months, I saw the last of my savings go with not nearly enough income to keep me in the black, and finalized my divorce. Just when I thought I was going to tumble into the abyss, everything snapped into place.

You gotta have faith.

At some point I may write about the emotional changes I underwent, but for now, I’m just glad that it’s OVER and I’m feeling better than I have in a long, long time.

So, presently, I am employed full-time (woot!), dating Gabe again (<3), and generally have my life the way I’ve wanted it for years. It’s been a long time coming and it feels good. And I turn 28 in a week. Wow.

I have much that I want to write about, interesting stuff, but for now, I’ll leave you with this:  It’s good to be back. =)

The Time Warp.

One of the greatest challenges of being newly single is how to spend all that time that just appeared out of nowhere. Seriously, where did all this time go when I was in a relationship? Is there some kind of time warp that sucks it all up? If anyone knows, I’m very curious. I’ll post the best explanation of this phenomenon later this week.

In taking advantage of this massive volume of free time, I’ve ratcheted up my activity levels:  I’ve read 3 books this week, ran 10 miles worth of quick runs plus a long run of close to 6 miles yesterday, completed an amazing short day hike of about 8 miles on Saturday (more on that later in the post), and cleaned my house top to bottom, twice. I’ve never been more busy doing stuff I like doing, yes, even the cleaning!, than before.

However, somewhere around the edges of these activities lurks a beast. It’s a fearsome, loathsome creature and the bane of all people across the globe:  loneliness. Am I keeping busy to keep from being lonely? Or am I simply doing that which I love for the intrinsic value of it? Does it really matter? I enjoy it. But, there is that loneliness that sneaks up and punches me in the face with bitter tears from time to time. ‘Tis but a stepping stone on the path of my new life, I remind myself; but it still sucks.

In those moments of utter and complete loneliness, I try to remember that (1) I’m really not alone. I have two handfuls of really good and close friends I talk to on a regular basis. Plus, I have lots of folks to chat with and keep tabs on via Facebook (I adore Facebook!). (2) I’m an amazing person with incredible interests and hobbies and now is the best time to indulge in them. (3) Happiness is a choice.

Of all the things I try to remember, number three is the hardest to live by and keep at the forefront of my thoughts. It’s human nature to indulge in self-pity rather than seek and focus on joy, but I’m working on it. I really am.

While increasing my focus on the good and my personal interests, I took myself out on a hike to Mount Pisgah on the tower trail Saturday morning. Bauer, my rent-a-pup, came with me. He was a happy dog. He wriggled and romped and got muddy feet and didn’t care. He was loving life and exuded it snout to tail. He didn’t have to keep chanting the mantra of I choose to live in the moment and be happy. He just did it. What an amazing way to live.

The sunlight through the trees cast beautiful shadows on the forest floor. I sought photo opportunities as a way to train myself to see the gems strewn throughout life. Dorothea Lange said, “[a] camera is an instrument that teaches people how to see without a camera.” I’m working on it. I’m getting there. I’m making progress. It’d be helpful if I had a digital SLR, though, instead of my little sidearm point-and-shoot. But, it’s on the list of things to acquire. I’ll get one. And I’ll take the most amazing photos, too. My eye is becoming keener on the joys of life.

(I’ll update the post later to include photos. At school without access to my images.)

Recent Developments

As you can imagine, a lot of changes have been happening in the space between this and last post; most of the changes were happening within.

I’m not going into the details of the separation or why I chose to move on, but I will tell you this:  it was the best decision I have ever made. I feel free. I feel alive. I’m beginning to live the life I always wanted to but couldn’t because of the rut my relationship was in for years.

In the last month I got back on the road running and biking (and dropped 17 lbs.), I kicked my professional life up a few notches, became a road warrior after buying a car,  cut and highlighted my hair, and bought a few new things for my wardrobe. Yes, perhaps a little too much for the wallet in the recession, but I still have plenty of money to pay my bills and I plan on getting a second job with all this free time that opened up for me. I am not a new woman, I am the woman I always meant to be but haven’t been.

Some of the big things coming around the corner for me are getting a new teaching job and moving (hopefully out of Maine) and when my finances are settled and recovered I’m going to get a dog. Not just any dog though, a gorgeous Weimaraner.

Aww!

Aww!

I’ve always wanted one but my ex didn’t. Phooey on him! I don’t have to worry about his thoughts on the matter any more! I’ve loved Weims for as long as I can remember and they are the perfect breed for my active lifestyle. We’ll keep eachother outside and enjoying life! 🙂

That’s all for now. I just wanted to give everyone a head’s up on what I’ve been up to. I’ll do a more in-depth report of some of my shenanigans soon. 🙂