Today I’m linking up with Anne to talk about what’s saving my life right now.
I’m a pretty boring sort of person. And the older I get, the more boring I am, which is definitely a good thing. Boring means no drama, simple to do lists, and getting enough sleep every night. For that reason, it doesn’t take much to make me happy, and I don’t need big, over-the-top things to save my life.
It may be dramatic to say “saving my life,” but here’s the thing: It’s a rough time of year, and there are one billion things right now just frittering away at me. So, I have to look at the good things. And during the winter, and the long stretch that is the spring semester, there are a few things that I know will keep my sanity. So here I present to you the things that are saving my life right now.
One of the highlights of my morning is the coffee. I love me some black coffee, and sipping it on the couch every morning while I cuddle with Rosie is a great way to center myself and gird my loins for the day. I have also started journaling while I drink my coffee, and extracting all the negative thoughts in my brain and putting them to paper while I caffeinate has really made a world of difference. On Sundays, I catch up on blogs or read a book while I have way too many cups of coffee, and it’s the best way to spend the morning.
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This year, I set the goal to read 50 books. This may not seem like a lot to some people, but somewhere between grad school and now, I fell out of the habit of reading, which is really weird to admit considering how many degrees in creative writing I have. But making reading a priority every day has really helped me. Thus far, I’ve finished three books this year, which is way more than I’ve read in a month in a long time. It’s tough on weekdays, since my schedule requires I work 50 hours in about 4 days each week, but Friday afternoons are a joy when I can sit on the couch and read while I wait for Chris to get home for date nights.
Antipasto date nights
Chris and I usually reserve Friday nights for date night, but we don’t always want to go out. Lately, we’ve been staying in and eating the best mediterranean finger foods our grocery store has to offer. Since I have Fridays off, I’ll prep the food as soon as Chris tells me he’s on his way home. I shove some garlic rolls in the oven, cut up a cured salami, toss some specialty olives in a bowl, and put out some fancy cheese. Then, we sit at the kitchen table and talk about our day while consuming this feast and the adult beverage of our choice. It’s cheaper and more satisfying than any date night we could have out, and the best part is that we can move directly from the kitchen to the living room to sit on the couch with the dog and get in a good 2 hours of Netflix before I fall asleep around 9 PM.
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For my birthday and Christmas, my mom will get me a bunch of different hair products that I’ve never used before. I love this, because good products for curly hair are expensive, and once I find one I like, I will keep buying it even though there are probably better ones out there to try. For my last birthday, she got me a tub of As I Am Twist Defining Cream, and it was a life changer. Well, I used it up while we were in Florida, and I wasn’t able to find it anywhere. But then, I walked into a Sally’s, where they had two large tubs of it. Naturally, I bought both of them, so I won’t have to get more for another 4-6 months, depending upon how humid it is in Oklahoma. This may sound ridiculous, but having curly hair that you want to keep healthy is a full time job. And sulfate and paraben-free hair products are expensive and not so easy to find in a world where every person with curly hair decides they don’t mind slowly going bald from straightening chemicals and too hot flat irons.
I’ve written before about how yoga made me cry, but last Friday, I went to yoga class at the natural history museum. We all circled a bronze mammoth statue with our mats, and the instructor gave us a simple direction. “As you begin your practice today, take a deep breath and say something nice to yourself.” Then I said something nice to myself in my head, and you’d be correct if you guessed that I almost lost it. Between yoga and journaling, I’m unpacking all manner of luggage and it’s exhausting and satisfying and completely necessary and I have no idea how I lived without all this before.