the good stuff of life

Facebook status today: :  “Eat, Pray, Love.    Then later I think I will Eat a steak, Pray I cooked it all the way through & Love my stretchy pants.”

So on this lazy Sunday with equal parts daylight & night sky, I FINALLY got around to watching Eat, Pray, Love.

I know, I know. I am far behind the rest of the world, but its their fault!  It was overly promoted both as the book & the movie.  It looked great,but frankly I am the type that doesn’t need to hear or see all the details PRIOR to reading/watching! Then its a waste of my time.

So I waited.

I almost started the book last summer.  Had planned to read it in the time off from work after the surgery in July.  Unfortunately the post-op pain meds & my sister’s obsession with reality TV didn’t let me focus enough to get through hardly the 2nd chapter.  Darn tiny house with no where to escape to!

I wanted to read the book before the movie, but today I just gave up & watched the DVD.

It was beautiful & perfect timing as I am taking a break from the 9-5 world, serious relationships & just allowing myself to be without the stresses.

It followed a nap on the couch with a snuggled up pug that only ended when a certain peach fronted conure crawl up & decided to send a few kissy noises my way while staring at my face.  Funny how you can be nose to nose with barely an inch apart & that is sure to wake you up!

Course the phone wasn't far, so I had to sneak a pic of my new alarm clock!

Silly Binx!  Good thing I love you & you chose the kissy noises rather than the loud as anything conure shreak!

So back to the movie… I of course like most people found myself in Liz’s character.  The one thing I don’t get is …. what next? Does she go off with the guy & lose herself again? Back to the accomplishments of the checking off the life list others expect?

Was it all a time out or are there really people who find a way to break free from the standards & create new lives, successful in their own eyes & hearts, that are sustainable?  Emotionally, financially & healthy to sustain.  The more time away from the stress of working and the stress of relationships, the more I realize that I feel stronger & happiest when I am living life on my own terms.  I want to dye my hair purple, I do it.  I want to eat steak, mango & sweet potato for dinner I do it.  No one to consider what they will think or if it works for them.  Its works for me & that’s all that matters.

I know at some point I want to be in a relationship.  I know at some point I need to find a way to pay the bills for the things that I enjoy like cable, clothes, food, gas & car payments… & oh ELECTRICITY! But can’t their be a way that doesn’t completely drain our souls?

Doesn’t life have a way for us to dance to the beating of our own drums anymore?  Or will there always be countless Dementors waiting to get us the moment we step out of lines?

As for me, I’m off to dream of where my own year of finding myself would lead.  I think I would like to Eat in either Cuba, France, Puerto Rico or maybe even across the United States Road Trip style in local spots.  My Pray would be in so many places, the Mayan Ruins, Ireland, Egypt, Tibetian Monastery or maybe a Buddhist Forrest monk’s place in Thailand (is Ajahn Brahm still there?), New Orleans or maybe just back to Salem for more time with someone great I have already been blessed with meeting.  The Love seems to be the hardest for me.  All I can come up with is a place I would love to be at, although not sure it would include another or just me…. Turks & Caicos call my name.

Sadly, the funds for the adventure just don’t seem to be showing up out of no where.  Careful what you wish for! I certainly don’t want any more inheritance money coming my way anytime soon, I prefer the relatives living.  So for now I will go cook that steak, bake that sweet potato, slice the mango & savor the dinner that I long for solo.

…yes I already have on my stretchy pants!

So nice, had to do it twice

Yesterday was one of those rare days lately where I ate at home. Something I have gotten way too out of the habit of since I was restricted with the hand in recovery last year. Lifting heavy pans while cooking was just too dangerous & even washing dishes was difficult one handed. Just too easy to go out or bring home take out.

But then I missed delicious meals like this…


ahh… berries, black eyed peas, dry salad (I know I’m weird) with coconut chicken!  On purple sparkly glitter plates!!

Sure it wasn’t exactly a lot of cooking going on, but it was enough to feel home cooked & healthy.  I loved it!  Something I have really missed, although Wilmington has some incredible spots to dine that certainly have a home feel with the delicious fresh food and friendly familiar faces.  Still getting time to actually sit down and eat a real lunch is bliss.

Its one of the biggest things that got on my nerves with my previous job.  Duty calls and I did the job, but it was a benefit I missed for sure.

So today I put in sometime with applications and submitting resumes and then it hit me…. LUNCH TIME!

Same meal, but I switched it up to meatless monday!  Substituted the Quorn patty from the back of the freezer for the chicken & added in some BBQ sauce to spicy it up a tad.  One thing about living alone is there seems to always be leftovers!

Nothing like having Baxter begging for blueberries & being able to share some with the birds.  A gal could really get used to this.

But then again…. there are the bills.  So more applying, more thinking & budgeting.  I could dwell in the situation & how the uncertainty looms, or I can thrive in the moment & enjoy it for what it is.  A chance to regroup.

I have a sense that things are going to be just fine.  (& yes I realize fine is not always easy, but in the end its going to be ok)

PLUS I get to dream of great places to work…

which may or may not let me have lunch breaks, but for the moment I am loving each & every one of them.

Sweet Surrender

holy canoli that was yummy

Night hasn’t been a total loss today, mood has been defunked.

All it took was giving myself a good time out (AKA meditation) & meeting up with a friend for dinner at a favorite italian place.  Buffalo Chicken pizza may be a new favorite thing! So good…. & the heat of the sauce was just enough to make my lips tingle yet not so  unbearable hot that it made you sweat. Bonus the hot guy was working again, so we had eye candy to go along with the waitress who is hilarious.  Get her every time & she has attitude to spare since she knows we can take it & give it back too! I stopped at one slice & although I certainly wasn’t hungry, I ended up having a canoli!  Gotta enjoy life.

Then I was smart & went grocery shopping while I was full.  Got out just at $25 & stocked up on lots of fruits & veggies….& coffee creamer, which was the most important thing right?

Feels like Sunday.  I have no concept of the days after last night.  Feel slightly bad I am not going out with another friend (to yet another gay bar) who called, but this girl is beat & doesn’t need to spend any extra money any more this weekend.  Might have to just hibernate til Tuesday when I have my interview to volunteer & a night class on Time Management.  (sounds like its going to be appropriate since time is slipping by!)

So tonight I’m huddled down already in some PJs thinking tomorrow I may not even come out of them. Just relax the day at home.

Course if I did have money to blow I can certainly think of a few things I would love to be doing tonight…  like shopping!

tip toe


tip toe by AliMoonGoddess on Polyvore.com

BUT since I am out of cash for the week (& then some thanks to the new camera), there will be no shopping.

Without the new camera, I have done ok.  As of the end of Saturday night, I am down to $39.41!  But I know I have gotten lucky this week & things will get tighter.  I am still using up food & gift certificates I have had, so this is making it a bit easier.  Plus I have just gotten lucky with people’s generosity.  I’m grateful for the wonderful people in my life.

Stormy Winds of Change

Whatever the reason today has been a whirl wind.

Complete with a storm rolling in that has wind gust wild enough to make one imagine there is a chance of seeing munchkins and a few golden bricks by the end of it all.

I HAD to go enjoy a few moments of feeling the power of it all.  Just seemed a fitting way to wind down from today.  Nature is incredibly enchanting in times like these.  Pure invisible force pushing all around you, whipping things not normally taken to flight!  Its not every day you can just stand still and let the gust tangle your hair & sway you around.  A bit like its all taking you over and swirling off the old to sprinkle in the new.

Emotions blew all over the place today.  Work went from a tad sentimental, to thrilled to be over and done with one attitude, to protective of the friends I’ve made, to scared the choice I made was too rash, to knowing what I have to do is follow my heart.  Moments I never wanted to leave the place that allows me to have Baxter there by my side everyday & with people who trust me even in my final days there.  Course then there was the being accused of not doing my job when clearly it was the set up by not giving me the paperwork I had asked for repeatedly.  I even felt a bit sad in the realization that in those “lil snafus” that person finds validity in his position.  It happens more when the boss is favorable.  Like he wants to make sure the boss is all his.  Oh well.  I am grateful not to have to continue to face those challenges and that the only insecurities will be my own for a little while.

Learning more & more about someone I am getting closer and closer too & still scared to death to open up too much of my life.

So it was time for one of my favorite activities….

RETAIL THERAPY!

Even if I didn’t have the cash.  (which for the record I only spent $11.08 today!)

Pottery Barn was the highlight of the excursion.  So much potential there of what could be.  Also loved overhearing a couple of employees talking about interior design theories.  I really wanted to jump in & say “so tell me how long do I have to see Lucite chairs before they go back out of style?” but I just silently listened & dreamed over the mirrors and rugs and all the other stuff tempting me to just move right into the store.   Thankfully my dream bed wasn’t there, otherwise I doubt I would have left!

might be called the Amelie, but I think it should be the ALI

Oh to be crawling into a queen size version that with my jersey sheets & purple down comforter…

I lurved this mirror too.

It has lil stars nestled into the center spots where the lines meet.  Cute huh?

& giggled when I saw these.  Thought they were for some dollhouse somewhere, but they are actually salt & pepper servers!

See…

adorable!  Not quite my style but the tiny size just added such a element of whimsy I couldn’t resist taking a moment to dream about them!

Now I’m home, relaxing listening to all the wind, rain & thunder.  Feeling pretty lucky to live here & get to listen to storms like this.  Nothing like knowing tomorrow all the dirt & crud will be washes away & life will be like new.  Fresh starts all over.

Bonus, I saw this online…

adoring this light! WAY too large for my space, but reminds me of the full moon.  Can you imagine dining in a room with the full moon hanging to light the way? Bliss.

I do have to wonder about that big chair? Was it needed for an extra guest? or is there someone with a massive ego that MUST have a special comfy chair for his? Seems odd to me.  So many stories could be played out in this scene, but for me the light steals the whole thing.

So on to snuggle with a certain lil pug & wait to see what tomorrow brings.

Whatever it may be, its going to be what’s best.  I have faith in things are all happening as they should be.

Dine & Dash

Seems like life is just moving too fast this time of year.

I admit I am enjoying every moment, but doesn’t leave me much time to do much else but keep up.

Lately dinners have been anywhere but home.  Just this past week I had one meal with a camera group I am a part, one with a local twitter group, another with a friend, a quick no time for much pizza (which has helped with lunches!) & then last night was a fabulous dining experience with a women’s group I just joined at a fondue place.

I actually made it to dessert! Since it was included.

I almost miss my kitchen!

If it was a better size & had room for a table & chairs, I might just have to tie myself down & start canceling to be able to cook at home!

Alas tonight here I go again.. a holiday social BBQ buffet dinner with the parrot rescue group I am a part of followed by the women’s group’s Games & Giggles event with snacks!

Hoping tomorrow I can take some time to relax & enjoy a meal at home.

Until then I just have to enjoy the ride.

 

 

 

Santa Baby…. Dreaming Again….

I spent many holidays in South Florida with a huge extended family running all over the place & being up to no good doing things like tossing the rotten tangerines from the ground into the canal pretending we were chasing off the alligators, climbing the grapefruit tree (& by doing so raising my grandfather’s blood pressure since he wanted to protect that tree) and making general choas & mischief.  The one time we would all be quiet & calm down was while we were eating.  Maybe that is why it seemed that once we finished up with one meal, someone somewhere was already talking about what we would do for the next meal.  It was something you had to plan ahead for with 11 grandkids, 8-10 adults (depending on the marriage vs divorce statuses of the moment) & the 2 grandparents!  These plates found at Kohl’s take me back to those days.  I wish I had room (& funds) to go grab some for myself for that reason alone.  I would give a leg to get to go back to those days.  Paradise is never valued til you can longer go back it seems.  I am eternally grateful for the memories & the chance to experience it 1st hand.  Thankful for all those that are still with us this year.

Also I have a confession. I don’t typically go for aprons.  Maybe if I hosted more dinner parties where I had to get dressed up & cook at the same time, then I might go for them.  However being someone who doesn’t do aprons, I still love this one from Pier One!  Very Holiday Diva!

Hot chocolate is a staple for me when the temperatures drop.  Forget calories & all that, hot chocolate is liquid comfort & much needed with the stresses of the seasons.  All the challenges to make everything merry & bright when there are so many ideas of what that is – NEED CHOCOLATE!  I think life would be a bit easier for the moment with a few decadent sips from this mug!  Because lets face it…. I AM ONE TOUGH COOKIE… even if I do need the reminder now & then.

Some days I swear I feel like I have never grown up & that I am still working in this type kitchen!

I have mentioned before that I live in a small cottage & that my kitchen is a small galley sized one?  This overwhelmed me this weekend.  Truth is my whole stinking tiny house is on my last nerve.  Sad thing is, I can’t afford to move out.  Its not paid off & who would want to purchase it anyway?

Between the carpeted floors (which is a nightmare for a pet owner, even more so with parrots) and the annoying neighbors I have to deal with watching every move I make or the ones behind me that I have to listen to anytime I want to open a window for fresh air (which frankly at times there is no fresh air due to their smoking habits!), I am beyond sick of the place.  There is no room for anything!  Not enough counter space & cramped cabinet space – seriously I broke a glass bowl this weekend simple from trying to stack them all to where they would fit! Also have I mentioned there is no room for an actual table to eat at? Unless you count the coffee table & couch.  Which just hasn’t been cutting it lately.

I feel stuck in the past.  All the college days & twenties life is still around.

Yet like I said. I can’t afford the upgrade.  What’s a girl to do?  DREAM.