Sleep

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Sometimes I want to sleep even when I’m not tired.

Sometimes this sleep comes up and catches me unaware.

I spend days not being productive, because this sleep traps me in its arms.

I don’t notice it at first, but it is overwhelm-ness.

It is fear of the unknown, fear of the known.

It is my way of avoiding what I have to do.

Sneaky brain of mine.

 

Friendship

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How do people become friends? I’ve always thought that your friends are people with which you share some common thread. People that either share your same hobbies, have lived through a similar experience, have shared an experience with you, or share your same values. I understand that there are no to people that are a 100% compatible or a 100% similar, but I would think that you should share some similarities.

Last night I had a “girl’s night”with two of my close friends. We had wine, snacks, and we talked about everything; relationship, pets, fears,jobs, and then for some reason politics. One of my friends was so politically incompatible with me that I was surprised. I had been aware of her believes, but we had never really talked about it until last night. We were able to discuss, even argue a bit without offending each other, which I guess is proof of the friendship. It made me wonder what else we would disagree with. I understand that if you are always surrounded by people that think and act like you, you don’t learn anything new, you don’t really get to question your believes and then you are just as bad as  the other people with ingrained believes, which is not how I want to live. Still, there is something to be said about the people you surround yourself with also being people that inspire and shape your life. Do I still consider her my friend? Yes, but I have definitely realized that we are friends because of circumstance. We would have never met if we had not shared one life experience (we both started a particular job at the same time) and yes we do have things in common; our love for dogs and the environment, but we probably have a lot more things we would disagree on.

Living a Creative Life

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I recently read Elizabeth Gilbert’s Big Magic: Creative Living Beyond Fear, it is a positive read for anyone looking for a push towards a more creative, positive life. I have been feeling for a while like I’m in between these two states, between living a creative life and this feeling of dread. Many of my post have already mentioned my feelings towards my job and my future. I do have a lot of fear and anxiety towards the future (which I recently promised to someone in my life, I would try to keep said anxiety in the low levels and embrace the day to day). However, I also feel like there is this creative side of me that is pushing to get out (which is part of the reason I started blogging again).

Ever since I can remember I have enjoyed reading books. I learned to read at an early age thanks to my mom and once I got into elementary school the librarian was so surprised to see a kid so into books that she would let me borrow more books than permitted and books that were intended for higher level readers. With this love for reading, I also discovered that I was not afraid to write my own stories. Granted when you are young many of your stories are pretty similar to the stuff you are reading, but still it’s a start. I wrote stories and essays all the way through high school, being called twice in different classrooms to read my work to my peers. I was always an overachiever and the arts weren’t my only passion, I enjoyed science and math too. As it got closer to thinking about college, for some reason I decided that language arts was not something I felt passionate enough about. Part of me was surely scared of what I would be able to do with that degree, but that is neither here or there. The point is, I pursued an academic career in the sciences, first biotechnology, then switched to biology and finished a masters in natural resources. I knew I found a field that I liked when I could read the scientific papers and found them interesting. When I did my masters, the thing that appealed to me the most was the fact that I was getting an education on the social aspects of the sciences. It was as if I kept circling the arts, but didn’t want to admit that I wanted to be a part of them.

I may have stopped writing, but I kept reading. It wasn’t as if inspiration didn’t hit me every so often, I would write a blog for a bit or write the sentence that kept running around in my mind, but I would quit or forget about it. Recently, feeling lost in my career, but with a pretty stable life I have started writing again. Reading Big Magic, gave me that final push to commit to embracing writing in my life.

What does this mean? I’m not quoiting my job and becoming a writer. I write, therefore I am a writer. Regardless of the quality of my writing, I’m still a writer. What I am doing is opening the doors of the universe and embracing writing. Committing to writing every day, any small moment that I have. Maybe some day I’ll manage to write a complete short story. Maybe some day I’ll feel confident enough sending my work to publishers. Maybe I’ll never be that good, the point is I embraced this part of me. I set my creativity free from the locked up room where it’s been.

The Inquisitors Tale Food Inspo

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I have been thinking about all the ways in which the books I read inspire my day to day. For a while now, I’ve been toying with this idea as I’m reading a book thinking about what it inspires me to do. Sometimes I read books that make me reflect, question and even change my attitude. There’s also books that inspire my fashion, my food choices, and even make me try new things. I read a lot of books, this year alone looking back at the Goodreads Reading Challenge I have read 67 books and the year isn’t even over. Many times I’m reading more than one book at the same time, which for the purposes of blogging can make it tricky. I have not devised a system yet, but I wanted to blog about one particular book that was standing out of the others.

I read a little bit of everything, specially now that I have gotten into literary/book related podcast, I have many list of books I want to read. This book in particular might not be everybody’s cup of tea, specially if you think it’s meant for a younger audience, which is ok, but you would be missing out in a cool book.

Here is the Book:

The Inquisitors Tale or The Three Magical Children and Their Holy Dog

By: Adam Gidwitz

What is it about?

This book follows these three children, all have felt alone in their respective villages/homes and now find themselves together under weird circumstances. They are pretty unique, each has a sort of gift and their paths unite. I have not finished this book, so right now the story is being told by different people who have encountered the children, I don’t know if they will also have chapters. I’m more than half way done and this has not been the case. This is sort of a medieval tale with characters retelling the adventures of the children. It’s a funny book with a message. It’s fast paced and never boring.

What did it inspire me to do?

Most of the retelling of the kids story is happening at an Inn, where all these characters are drinking beer and sharing their respective parts of the story as I guess the Inquisitor (in the title) listens and tries to make sense of the story. We recently hosted a dinner party and our fridge is full of beer and cheese, so I decided to make Beer Cheddar Soup. I felt it would be something the people at the Inn would probably have eaten.

I searched the internet for a couple of recipes. I went for the crock-pot version of this soup, here are a few recipes for it:

Family Fresh Meals

Crock Pot Ladies

My Crock-Pot is a tiny one and I didn’t have heavy cream, so I had to adjust the recipe some what, but the main ingredients were there.

The end result was a rich soup, not creamy but heavy in flavor. I could picture the people at the Inn eating this, in really cold weather, specially if there wasn’t much meat to go around. It was definitely fatty, but I’m not complaining, it was delicious with a slice of bread.

If you read the book or make the soup, I would love to hear your thoughts.

 

Travel Calms the Soul

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This past week I got the chance to finally visit Niagara Falls. I love to travel, but I haven’t done much traveling recently. There’s so many places I want to visit, so many things that I want to see. Niagara Falls was a special trip because I had never gone to Canada and with this trip I managed to check to things on my checklist, seeing the Falls on the Canadian side. There were so many things to do, it was a fun trip even in the winter. I want to go back when it’s warmer just to be able to do many of the hikes. There were a few other reasons why this trip was special, it was our first vacation with our dog Finn, he enjoyed Canada just as much as we did, and it was the first random trip me and my boyfriend were taking together. This is important for us, because he is a little less into traveling than me and we have reached a compromise in which we will try and travel once a year, start close by and then work our way into exploring other countries, ideally seeing the Northern Lights in Iceland.

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Niagara on the Lake, visiting Lake Ontario

This trip also gave me the opportunity to visit one of the Great Lakes, Lake Ontario. I hadn’t thought about this but I have been able to visit most of the Great Lakes, I’m only missing Lake Superior. Which now means Lake Superior is on the list of things I want to see.

I like traveling for many reasons, mostly because I believe I’m a pretty restless person. I like to move, I  get weird when I’m too long in the same place. This shows itself in tiny ways, if I spent to many days inside the house, or even if I have plans to do something and the other people are being to slow. Traveling gives me an opportunity to explore, walk around, experience nature differently. Traveling renews me, it inspires me. After a short change in my surroundings I always feel like a different person, like I’m given a chance to start fresh, to be somebody who is still myself but has some qualities of somebody else. I don’t always have the resources to travel, sometimes I’m only able to travel a short distance, or I’m only able to go on a short walk, it still works. Wondering even for short distances does the mind and soul good.

I hope I’m able to continue wondering for years to come. Happy Holidays!

Chimney by the Woods

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There’s a chimney in the middle of the woods. The only remnant of what once was. A relic of a not so distant past. What was once the bones of this house, now lie as rubble scattered across. Yet, the chimney stands tall, daring us to imagine all the lives that found heat and warmth near it. Long lived lives, short lived lives, sad lives, happy lives, many lives; all their essence represented in this chimney by the woods.

This chimney might have helped cooked dinners, tasty dishes made over the fire. Once, this chimney could have kept a family warm on a cold winters night. It might have even been witnessed to declarations of love. How many secrets has it kept, burned by it’s flames?

In times gone by, this chimney was full of life. Now, this chimney is lucky if it provides a home for a squirrel or a few birds trying to nest. Human eyes might not set their gaze in this chimney for days, weeks or months. Oh, the stories this chimney could tell!

I see this chimney and I wonder, what relics of my history will I leave behind? What will carry my essence once I’m gone?

Centered

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Whenever I take fitness into my own hands, I have a lot of struggles. Mostly because I find my self wanting to maintain a balance between how I should feel about myself and what I want to look like. I want to be fit and healthy for the right reasons. Because it is not only good for your physical health, but also good mentally, and emotionally. I want to be fit and healthy, because I want to be the best version of myself. I want to be fit and healthy, because it helps with my anxiety. I don’t want it to become a comparison to fitter people. I don’t want to be fit and healthy, because society wants us to believe being overweight is awful. I want to exercise because it makes me feel good.

However, I’m not immune to insecurities, and do have episodes of feeling bad about my body, nitpicking tiny imperfections, and letting it get me down for no good reason. This is what I struggle with. I wish I was beyond all this crap. So what do I do?

I try to accept the doubts and remind myself of the real reason for me exercising. I accept that their will be low times, I’m not always going to look great, but the reason for me exercising and trying to eat healthy is not to fit into society standards. At the end of the day I have my motivations clear and this always helps keep me centered. The fact that I’m not trying to achieve perfection, but trying to be my best keeps me grounded. Reminding myself of all the other things I have going for myself, things I enjoy, and of course the people in my life, helps me stay balanced.