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Year In Review

It's been a pretty amazing year. So much change, so much fun, so many friends

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And the new year holds new adventures yet unknown.  But again, "to make an end is to make a beginning. The end is where we start from". 

Let it snow!!!!

It's snowing! I love being out in the city when it's just starting to snow and the flakes are sticking to your eyelashes. I have to go back out into it to run some more errands (taking a break to eat lunch/watch Food Network, obvi). But then I plan on coming back home, ordering in an obscene amount of food from my local Italian family restaurant, and then curling up on the couch in warm, comfy clothes and watching all the movies that are on television tonight.

Hopefully the snow stops by Monday like it's supposed to so I can fly home on Tuesday!

I also finally got a package I've been waiting for ages for. I had them keep it at the post office after they tried to deliver it when I was gone, but they put it on the wrong shelf, so when I went yesterday they couldn't find it. Luckily, someone eventually found it and I could pick it up today. Maybe not so luckily since the lines at the PO were ridiculous. Seriously people? You think it's a good idea to try to mail everything the Saturday before Christmas?

Eeee! Snow! Christmas! Love! Joy! Happiness! Glee!

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Yum!

Slowly but surely getting better. The walk to the laundromat still tired me out, but that could have also been the 25 pounds of clothing and linens I was carrying. Thank god for wash and fold services. I would have fallen asleep on top of one of the washers if I had to sit there and do my own washing today. This is why I always budget for the "just in case" things in life.

But, I did make applesauce today, which was great. Just put some cut up apples in the slow cooker with a bit of water, bit of sugar, cinnamon, and a bit of nutmeg. Let it cook all day and you end up with yummy goodness. Good way to use up the too many apples I had (I get free produce with any order I place at Fresh Direct and, since it's fall/winter, they keep sending me apples).

Definitely going back into the office tomorrow. Even if I'm tired and walking as far as the subway takes a lot out of me, I really need to get out for at least a few hours. This staying at home for almost a week thing is really sucky.

Mongolia

Being sick sucks. At least I slept through the night last night and my fever seems to have broken for good. I haven't had a fever in ages, much less one that lasted for 3 days. Ugh. Painful. But feeling better today, at least. Still weak and icky, but much better than yesterday. Awaiting a fresh direct order of lots of juice and soups b/c I was starting to run out and am too tired to go to the store.

Willa and I have started up http://overeducatedandunderemployed.wordpress.com again. This time we have guest bloggers already lined up and are taking it a bit easier so we don't burn out on it. But we both enjoy doing it and wanted something fun to do during the evenings as work breaks. Speaking of which, I need to get back to work since I slept through most of yesterday instead of sending emails...

"Last Christmas, I gave you my heart...

...but the very next day the Fetus Vampire ate it."

So, yeah. I need to start posting in this thing again. Um...what to say? St. Nick's day is tomorrow! Yay! The little german child in me is very happy about this. I have hung my stocking up and all (it's already full since my mom brought it from St. Louis when she and my dad came up for Thanksgiving, but whatever). The act of hanging a stocking still makes me smile like a little kid. I love the holidays. Tons of good will and tons of smiles. And lots and lots of hot chocolate. I've made up my own hot chocolate mix this year. It's delicious, even if I do say so myself.

I've been on a bit of a craft spree as of late. Crocheting apparently does run in my blood. I picked up a crochet hook and some yarn for the first time in years this fall and have been hooking non-stop ever since. I love it. It becomes almost meditative at some point. Also, my roommate watches a lot of television, so I can hang out with her and do something productive while watching tv. So many presents already made. I love making gifts. Been checking out tons of craft sites to get ideas. Obviously, I have to pay rent, so I'm not actually making that many things I find, but the act of being inspired by such great ideas is enjoyable.

Saw Carrie Fisher's "Wishful Drinking" over Thanksgiving with my parents - it was hilarious! I haven't laughed that hard in a long time. Also, I really like how frank she is about being bipolar. Especially since, while not bipolar, I do exhibit some manic tendencies (and depressive ones too, but I've gotten better over the years at fending those off). But, everything Carrie talked about was hilarious once she put her spin on it. Loved it!

That was the second show I've seen since moving to NYC. I also saw "Talk Like Singing". Who'd have thought I'd be going to a Japanese musical starring Shingo from SMAP and Jay Kabira? The songs were also written by Yasuharu Konishi of Pizzicato Five fame. I literally bought the last ticket available and am so glad I did. It was pretty funny and such a feel good show. Good times were had by all.

EDIT: Totally forgot to add that my mentor (and technically editor, though she's on maternity leave for another year now) had a lovely baby boy the day after Thanksgiving. I'm so thrilled for her, her husband, and big sister Georgie! Need to get cracking on his birthday present, though, since he arrived a month early (just like his big sister!).

NaNoWriMo

I have signed up for National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo.org).  Yeah.  I've just moved into a new city and am settling into a new job and looking for another one.  This is not a good time.  But really, when is a good time.  There's never been a good time for me.  I've never felt confident in my fiction writing skills.  So, I'm just going to do it.  Type out a novel.  It doesn't have to be good.  It's just about the practice.  I mean, what else am I going to do when I get home from work in the evenings?  Watch tv?  Browse the internet?  Ok, writing articles, reading and cleaning and grocery shopping are actually valid uses of my time, but I can't do those all the time.  And writing is actually very therapeutic for me.  It's how I process the world around me.  

Now, this is my first year doing this.  This is my first novel-length piece of fiction.  So, I don't actually have much hopes for seriously finishing the 50,000 words.  That's 1,666 words per day in November.  I mean, that's not too many words and I know I can punch out 2,000 word articles in little time, but fact-based articles are very different from fiction.  I think the reason I want to do this so much is so I get over my fear of writing fiction.  It doesn't have to be good when I first type it up.  That's what editing is for.  The good can come later.  I just need to learn how to get my characters and plot and setting on the page.  This doesn't have to be Waugh or Beerbohm or Proust.  It just has to be something, even a crappy first-time something.  

I got an email from the lovely Kimberly Wilson.  She told me to "keep shining and taking risks".  I plan on it!  

Also, moving into my new place today.  It's just an exciting day all around.  

What do we all think of me going as Joan from Mad Men for Halloween?  Good idea, or going to be too popular this year?  I think I own all the necessary items, which is why it is appealing.  Also, non-permanent red hair dye would cover up my roots for a week or so.  Always a good thing...

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Tranquility

So much has happened lately that I don't know how to recount it all.  But today I'm starting over.  Today I'm moving to New York.  Today I am getting back to me.    
I start work on Monday.  It's only part-time for now, but it's a hands-on editorial/writing job in the art world.  I no longer know what I'm going to do in life or where I'll end up. But I like it that way. So here's to the next adventure. Here's to the next beginning. Here's to the next ending.

 

What we call the beginning is often the end
And to make and end is to make a beginning.
The end is where we start from. And every phrase
And sentence that is right (where every word is at home,
Taking its place to support the others,
The word neither diffident nor ostentatious,
An easy commerce of the old and the new,
The common word exact without vulgarity,
The formal word precise but not pedantic,
The complete consort dancing together)
Every phrase and every sentence is an end and a beginning,
Every poem an epitaph. And any action
Is a step to the block, to the fire, down the sea's throat
Or to an illegible stone: and that is where we start.
We die with the dying:
See, they depart, and we go with them.
We are born with the dead:
See, they return, and bring us with them.
The moment of the rose and the moment of the yew-tree
Are of equal duration. A people without history
Is not redeemed from time, for history is a pattern
Of timeless moments. So, while the light fails
On a winter's afternoon, in a secluded chapel
History is now and England.

With the drawing of this Love and the voice of this
     Calling

 

We shall not cease from exploration
And the end of all our exploring
Will be to arrive where we started
And know the place for the first time.
Through the unknown, unremembered gate
When the last of earth left to discover
Is that which was the beginning;
At the source of the longest river
The voice of the hidden waterfall
And the children in the apple-tree
Not known, because not looked for
But heard, half-heard, in the stillness
Between two waves of the sea.
Quick now, here, now, always—
A condition of complete simplicity
(Costing not less than everything)
And all shall be well and
All manner of thing shall be well
When the tongues of flame are in-folded
Into the crowned knot of fire
And the fire and the rose are one.

-T.S. Eliot, Little Gidding


Garden Tools

I have a baby tomato on my tomato plant.  This is exciting.  Also, my lavender is growing really well, which is surprising considering how wet the summer has been.  So, I must have done well with the amount of drainage gravel I used when planting them in their containers.  My basil was looking a bit worse for wear when I got back from vacation (I hadn't picked any of it in a long time and all the leaves were dead).  I thought it might have died, but I pruned it back and I've got new sprouts and leaves on it now.  All very exciting.  

Went to the lavender farm with Mama this morning to pick up some more lamb bratwursts.  Yum!  Having some garlic butter ones tonight.  Also picked up some artichoke-garlic tapenade and treated ourselves to a lavender chocolate chip cookie.  I didn't pick up any other lavender items today, though.  I'm loving my lavender body butter, though.  It's so yummy smelling and absolutely lovely on my skin.  Expensive, but made by the lady who owns the lavender farm.  So worth it.

Write, Write, Organize, Write

I made this.  With my own writing.  Yay!

Trying out some new planner ideas. Ordered a Planner Pad at a steeply discounted price to try out. Looks fabulous!

Also discovered DIY Planner and the lovely templates there.  Think I will see how the planner pad goes and then make up my own for next year.  Exciting!

I'm such an organization nerd.

Also checking out clear boxes to keep shoes in.

I love the organization aisles at Target. *starry eyes*

Hip Tranquil Chick?

I haven't been on a run in a while and I'm starting to feel icky.  Better get one in tomorrow morning or I don't think I'll be able to survive until Friday. 

Birthday on Thursday followed by a weekend of joy in Boston with mes gazelles.  Went on a shopping trip today during my lunch break to pick up goodies for them.  So joyous.  Until the downpour started.  And by downpour, I mean Noah would have been frightened by it.  Everyone on the highway slowed to about 10 mph.  A semi-truck nearly jack-knifed next to me.  Eeeeek!

I have a mandolin now (the kitchen utensil, not the instrument).  It's exciting.  I managed to get it for $10, which is awesome because I saw the exact same one at Sur La Table today for $20.  Go me.  I love Home Goods.

I'm still in the office.  Everyone else is gone.  It's pretty awesome when it's like this.  Just me chilling and listening to podcasts while going through electronic files.  Good times.

I think I need some caffeine, though.  Hopefully there's a stash of diet coke somewhere...

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tea and words
wakikaki
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