One for the weekend

The moment you let go is the moment that you [become] old.-Baroness Trumpington

That quote is from this lovely little film which I found over at Blair’s blog. Hope you enjoy it as much as I did.

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Silver linings

For some strange reason when I was growing up, I had this idea that when I became an adult, things would get better year by year. I’ve found the opposite to be true for some time now. The unexpected hardships that I’ve faced really made me bitter for a while. I was depressed and angry and retreated into a hole where I was virtually unreachable to those who knew me well. I became an expert in self doubt and self sabotage.

Took a #canning class today. The instructor gifted us with apple preserves.

I went about the business of daily life, to be sure, but it was on autopilot. In such a state, I wasn’t of much use to anyone, and I suffered most b/c I kept it to myself. Then one day, probably after a conversation with my Yaya, I decided to be a Pollyanna again. I’m not saying that this works for everyone or that there is some magical cure for depression.  Circumstances hadn’t changed, but when I decided to stop constantly freaking out over things I could not control, life felt a little bit easier.

I didn’t just let go of some of my anxieties though, I also became a little bit braver. I stopped running away from or ignoring problems and instead, have faced them head on. I have also stopped denying that I may have some talent or ability and I now take the compliments as they come. I think that’s actually the area I still struggle with most. As Luvvie would say, it’s probably a low shelf of steam issue. I have to give a lot of credit here to my husband, mother, and close friends who encourage and support me. They all think I can do anything which is both sweet and ridiculous. I don’t need to be able to do everything, just a few things well.

Yarn cake.

This year has been difficult in many ways, but also filled with brilliant high points. The first has been that I’ve seen my family and friends more in the past year than I probably did in the three years prior. I’m working hard in school and dreaming of the day I finish and can call myself a librarian. Along the way, I’ve been investigating new possibilities for work. I’ve also made some decent strides with my hobbies including having a photo I took of a friend and her now husband featured in the NY Times. Just the wedding section, but still. I took a photography class  recently and will take another soon. I’m really looking forward to it not because I’m planning a career in the field, but because I like to be good at the things I do. I recently jumped over two hurdles when I finally learned to can and also pushed down my weird fear about sock knitting and bought some small circular needles to make it happen. This is all very exciting to me.


And apparently, research supports what I’ve experienced. Have you heard of the documentary Happy? I watched it last night after following a link to this post. The psychologists in the doc found that people with strong support systems who stay active and try new things generally have greater happiness levels. The things I’ve done may seem small, and in fact, some have only taken a few minutes or a few hours. Through the process I’ve learned that most obstacles aren’t insurmountable and that I do have the ability to persevere. I won’t say that I don’t freak out every so often, but I usually get over things pretty quickly and move on. And that seems to be key to my wellness and happiness.

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State of the Garden, Early Fall


I find that I have much more produce in the fall than in the summer, no matter when I put my veggies in. The four hardiest items in the garden at present are the rainbow chard which has produced for months on end, tomatoes, purple bell peppers, and chives.

purple bell peppers


I fear a tree in the common area behind my house is threatening to make my backyard almost completely shady in another year or two. However, I may have found a new patch. In what I thought was the shadiest area of the garden, some volunteer tomatoes sprung up! They were somewhat spindly, but it’s still nice to know I can expand if I want to. Maybe grow some greens there. I had a lovely native/herb garden but it poorly planned and so I didn’t have flowers and herbs available for my constant use.


Happy Solstice!

The most significant problem I faced in the garden this year was moles/voles. I received tons of suggestions for getting rid of them, but in the end, I did nothing. That meant losing all my radishes, but I don’t like radishes, so I didn’t mind. Another problem was the seeming lack of bees and other pollinators this year. They may have been around, but I just didn’t see them. I believe this is why my cucumbers and squash suffered. I didn’t harvest a single squash or cucumber.

Squash blossom

Teeny tiny cucumber

There are still a few weeks left until the first frost and I didn’t plant a winter garden. I’m enjoying the green while I can and thinking ahead to next year’s garden.

juliet tomatoes

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Eau d’embarras

A few weeks ago, I got a new circular in the mail from Ulta. Included were a few perfume samples. I’ve worn the same perfume, Chanel No. 5, since I was 16 and  I am sensitive to new scents. So I don’t know what possessed me to open up and try all the perfume samples included in the catalog. It was probably the influence of my three year old. I was surprised and moderately embarrassed that I liked the new Katy Perry perfume. I decided then that when my current bottle of perfume ran out, I would try KP’s. Not a big deal to some, but for me, a person who can be fearful of change, a huge step. That time drew near and so, I decided to check out the new scent at Sephora since I was already in the mall.

At first, I tried not to draw attention to the fact that I was there for KP. But it wasn’t in the women’s fragrance section and I was forced to ask its location. It was on the endcap with the Bieber, 1D, and Taylor Swift fragrances. If I could turn red, I would’ve right then. After the first associate witnessed my humiliation, I couldn’t find those fragrance stick thingies that you use to test the scent. So, I asked another salesperson to help me locate them. She decided to stick around and see which one I was trying. To add to my shame, she tried to quiz my 3 y/o on said pop-stars. Being three and basically mute in public, Lark said nothing. The associate laughed that it was probably a good think Lark didn’t know who they were and moved along.

Relieved I didn’t like KP after all, I pulled hub and the kiddo over to the magical “find your scent” computer hoping for some answers. Did I mention I also had my husband in tow? With the absence of available girlfriends to escort me on such trips, L has received an accidental education on all things makeup, beauty, and fashion over the years. While poking around on the computer, a third salesperson swooped in. When I told him my dilemma, he nodded with sympathy while simultaneously expressing his shock at my wearing No. 5. He said that I was much too “youthful” for that old perfume and proceeded to make some suggestions. There was one I wanted to try, but he didn’t seem a fan, so I skipped it. After a few, I thought I’d found the one and was taking it to the register but began to hesitate. I decided to try Flowerbomb, which was the popular perfume the salesman didn’t favor. And guess what? I loved it!

By this point, I was too mortified to go up to the counter with my choice, fearing looks of disapproval and subtle whispering from the staff about my lack of taste. So, I did what any other socially awkward introvert would do in such a situation. I decided to leave the store and come back when there would probably be new staff on duty. This whole process left L dazed and confused, and not just because he’d sniffed too many perfumes.

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Happy Holidays

Holidays 2012

I’m taking some time away to enjoy what’s left of the year with my family and friends. May your holiday season be filled with love and laughter.

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