Friday, January 30, 2015

How Much Can I Cram into 30 Days? Let's Find Out.

This week I have begun the process of moving. My highly (overly?) organized self is putting everything into four categories:
  1. Going to Best Guy's immediately
  2. Going into storage for retrieval later on
  3. Going to Goodwill or other charity
  4. Unceremoniously trashing/recycling
I've already made one trip to Goodwill, thrown out two bags and recycled one bin. I've got a large pile of things I'm bringing to Best Guy's and an even larger pile of things to be stored.

In addition to me moving in, BG and I are also doing some minor renovations/updates to his condo. He is selling it and hoping to buy a no-shared-walls home this Spring. So when I am not packing or trashing, I'm picking up paint chips and thinking about how lovely his bathroom would be with pale sage-green walls and the wainscoting painted creme. We'll be tackling a few different projects each weekend with the goal of putting it on the market in March.

In addition addition to me moving in with BG and renovating his condo, I also have a benefit show on the 7th, which I am super excited about. I also also will be walking in a friend's fashion show on the 17th. My friend's stuff is completely, awesomely The Shit and I'm super honored and excited to be asked.

In addition addition addition, it's the busy season in my little ski town and we've got a holiday weekend coming up in the middle of February that will make my wallet sing in happiness and my hands thankful there is a snowbank in which to stick them. However, the commute from new town to ski town is a long one, and not one I can do long-term. I have started the process for looking a new job that is just as awesome as my current one. I think the search is going to be a long one.

This February is filling up fast, and while there is plenty of time to get everything accomplished, I'm beginning to bend a little from the weight of it all. The move is huge for me, both logistically and emotionally. I keep telling myself to breathe and sometimes I even remember to do so. I fully expect at some point I will break down in tears. Dunno when, dunno when, so just be prepared.

Crazy, wonderful, exciting days!

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Shine On.

Generally speaking, I consider myself to be a lucky person. I've always been able to support myself (although some years it is easier than others), I've always been able to feed myself, keep me as warm as can be expected in a Vermont winter. I'm a smart girl who naturally tends toward the two learning styles most schools historically used, so I never had educational issues. I had a few health issues growing up, but I was lucky in that they were all caught and fixed so I've been able to lead a happy, healthy life. I grew up in a stable, loving family who did their best to provide for my brother and I.

However, no one could ever say I have been particularly lucky in love.

Now granted, there are many people out there a LOT less lucky than I when it comes to romance. I have never been abused. I have never been sold. I have never been cheated on (that I know of, anyway). I have never been left at the altar.

I simply spent too much of my dating life assuming that if I wanted love I needed to dull my Shine.

You know, my Shine? That special sparkly quality that is my Self. I learned at a very young age that if I wanted to move about in society with the other kids that my Shine needed to be dulled. Kids with a lot of Shine tend to get picked on and beaten up by the kids who have already had their Shine tarnished for them.

In the dating world, I discovered that men either ran screaming from my Shine because it was too intense, or assumed that I was a naive push-over. There were a few who were attracted to it, god bless 'em: sweet, gentle souls who gravitated toward that shine like moths to a flame, never realizing how badly they would get burned.

It was pretty frustrating and dis-heartening. And tiring. It gets really fucking tiring dulling the Shine down, either in fear of rejection or fear that it will hurt someone else. Because it wants to shine, dammit! But last year, I finally came to realize that I was doing myself a disservice. I'm a Shiny, Sparkly Person. If a person can't stand my light, then they can friggin' go stand in the dark somewhere else.

Coming to that realization was so liberating. I found it didn't matter anymore. If I found someone, great. If I didn't find someone, great. Either way, I was going to be the best, shiniest, sparkliest, unapologetic version of me. Fuck everyone else.

But you know what? I've found someone who revels in my Shine. He isn't afraid of it, and it won't burn him up and spit him out. He sees it, understands it, and accepts it. And the best part? He Shines too. Oh, how he Shines.

And now... we're going to Shine together. In the same place, at the same time. This past weekend Best Guy asked me to move in with him. I - with tears in my eyes - said yes.

When you've come to believe that romantic love is not yours to have, being given it is a deeply humbling experience. I am so grateful for the journey I went on, because it led me to him. But more importantly, it led me to Me, if that makes any sense at all.

And now we can continue this journey together.

Along with two cats and a beagle whose farts can fill up a room with a vaulted ceiling.

Thursday, January 22, 2015

An Essay on Why I am Sick to Death of the Whole "Mercury in Retrograde" Thing Yet Still Believe it's Trying to Kill Me

So. Mercury is in retrograde. AGAIN.

If it seems like this happens all the time, that's because it does. Usually three or four times a year. So, once every quarter everyone gets a chance to blame every bad thing that happens on a planet that while not actually going backwards certainly looks the part.

If you have no idea what I'm talking about, here's the gist. In the astrological realm, the planet Mercury rules communication, clear thinking, truth and travel. When the planet appears to go backward (even though it isn't), all of these things "go backward" as well. Emails get lost, people mishear things, you have trouble focusing, travel plans get FUBAR'd, dogs and cats lay together in sin, eggs won't scramble, and generally all bad things everywhere are Mercury's fault. Even worse, you start to feel the effects of the backward boogey before it officially happens and sometimes for a while after it's done.

The ubiquitous "They" recommend never signing contracts during this time period, and to not buy big-ticket items, especially electronics. Take everything people say with a grain of salt, as miscommunication comes easily and people aren't always thinking with a clear mind. Double and triple check travel arrangements, and generally don't make final decisions on anything until it's over. "They" also say this is a very good time to complete old projects (just don't start any new ones), and to take time for introspection. Basically just hunker down and weather out the storm.

Obviously, this has been around since western astrology came in to being. However, it seems like only in the past few years that everyone has jumped on the retrograde bandwagon. Or, maybe it's just the fact that I hang out with a lot of people who do astrology. Anyway, it always feels like everyone gets super worked up and freaked out and OMGOMGOMGOMG STOP EVERYTHING NOW DON'T MOVE A MUSCLE FOR THE NEXT THREE WEEKS!

You guys, it's tiring me out.

On the one hand, I've experienced the craziness for myself and believe that it does indeed happen. On the other hand I have just enough skeptic in me to find myself stifling the "Oh, come on" eye roll. Frankly, it's exhausting getting freaked out three times a year about whether or not purchasing a new coffee maker is going to blow up the house.

This time around, we'll be feeling the effects until February 11th. So, during that time I'll be doing my best to pretend I don't believe in it while making sure I buy no electronics and laughing at the hilarious results of all the communication gaps.

Also, I'll be hiding under the covers whenever possible.

Just in case.

Sunday, January 18, 2015

January Sunday

It's just after 10am on a blustery January Sunday morning.  I am sitting at the dining room table in Best Guy's condo, with one of his cats by my side. I'm listening to him work on a new tune upstairs while I'm taking care of my Sunday morning chores (ie, Facebooking). There is a dog snoring on the couch. I'm currently covered in said dog's hair, but that's okay because I am completely smitten with Bony Buddy.
Lord knows he's got me pegged as the softy in the family.

We've got a long list of things to accomplish this Sunday before the winter nastiness this evening. Then, we get to stay in while the storm rolls through. Tomorrow is Martin Luther King Day and Best Guy has it off, so we get to have another day all to ourselves.

We both greatly enjoy these suspensions of reality. But honestly? They aren't suspensions of reality. We're building a new reality together. And the more pieces we fit together, the more Right it feels.

My heart is full.

Sunday, January 11, 2015

Glamour Shots!

Yesterday, I met up with my friend Jen. She's looking to get in to photography and wanted to augment her portfolio so she asked if I'd model for her. Here are some of the results:

Courtesy Jennifer Billings Photography

Courtesy Jennifer Billings Photography

Courtesy Jennifer Billings Photography

Courtesy Jennifer Billings Photography

Courtesy Jennifer Billings Photography

Courtesy Jennifer Billings Photography

Courtesy Jennifer Billings Photography

Courtesy Jennifer Billings Photography

Courtesy Jennifer Billings Photography

Courtesy Jennifer Billings Photography

All I can say is, my friend Jen has an amazing eye and holy moly I look freakin' HAWT in these pictures.

Friday, January 9, 2015

It's Officially 2015.

No getting around it, no going back.

I am feeling MUCH better. I spent the better portion of the weekend sleeping and the holiday workload has eased up enough so I don't feel like I'm killing myself slowly anymore. I feel like - a week in to the year - I can finally look up, breathe, and take care of business.

Like vacuuming. Holy god do I need to vacuum.

I also need to get back to eating regular, healthy meals. Between the holidays and this past week where I waffled between wanting to eat nothing and all the tater tots in the known universe, I have seen nary a vegetable in two weeks. That must change. Now. I've made myself a yummy blended lentil soup comprised with pretty much every vegetable in the house that was 3 hours from expiring. It is pretty tasty. I'm also looking to go to the store later to stock up on healthy, quick food items.

It's time to start paying attention again.

Speaking of, now that I'm feeling better it is time to start putting in to practice some of my 2015 goals. Yes yes, those esoteric goals from two posts ago still count. But I actually had a few tangible items I wanted to re-integrate in my life starting in the new year. A couple of them will have to wait a little longer until I can exert significant amounts of energy without hoarking up a lung, but at least one I can start now. My 2015 goals:

  • Start a belly dance drill practice at home. I have been phoning it in for years, and this year I have the opportunity to dance with some local goddesses. It is time to up my game.
  • Re-start my at-home yoga practice. I have done nary a downward facing dog in months, either at home or in a class. I would ideally like to start both at-home and at-class practices back up, but I need to start where I am. And where I am is struggling to find the time to get to a studio. But rolling my mat out in my living room is immediate and I don't have to change out of my pajamas if I don't want to.
  • Re-start my at-home meditation practice. I am a calmer, happier, less bitchy person when I meditate on the regular. 'Nuff said.
These are all easily integrated in to my life, if I just exert a little effort. They will all make me a happier, more content person. So really, there's nothing for it but to do it.

Happy 2015 everyone.

Monday, January 5, 2015

Breathing is Good, I'd Like to Do it Again Someday Soon.

What a freaking whirlwind the last week has been. New Year's Eve was amazing.

Disco Ball Dress, Git down, boogie oogie oogie...

....and then I came down with a cold.

It whopped me good. Actually, at first I thought it was just a hangover. But hangovers generally don't go into the next day or result in fevers. I ended up going home from work early on Friday and took Saturday off. I'm supposed to be back at it tomorrow but thankfully someone is willing to cover for me because I can't breathe right now and this cough does not lend itself to relaxation.

This has been quite the lesson for me on many fronts. First and foremost, that I need to know my limits. I pushed way past them these last couple of weeks and of course my immune system became compromised. Secondly, playing the martyr helps no one. Trying to "soldier through" when I can barely stay upright isn't proving that I am better or stronger; just that I'm more stubborn. Thirdly, it's okay to let people take care of me. Best Guy kept me fed and watered and was the one to figure out I had a temperature of 100.5 and helped me get it under control. Finally, taking the time you need to heal is not letting anyone down. And if it is, well, that is a whole different set of issues that need to be addressed.

So, here I am at home, learning lessons and trying to breathe. Welcome, 2015.

This is Two.

Monday the 21st was our 2-year wedding anniversary. We build the Matrimonial Pizza, with my brother officiating and my Chick of Honor wat...