Monday, July 30, 2012

Hanging On

Most of us have a tendency to hang on to one thing or another---I'm guilty of it.  I've kept jeans long past the point where they should have been worn, several sizes too big with holes in inappropriate places, held together by threads.  They were what I referred to as my "sweatpant jeans."  The denim had grown so soft that instead of the denim they originally were, it felt like brushed cotton.  Those jeans were my adult security blanket.  Not surprisingly, I disposed of those jeans when I bought my home, ended a relationship, and essentially became an adult.

I'm bringing up the topic of "hanging on" because I spent the past hour or so going through our master bathroom cupboards.  With a garbage bag.  Tossing make up that was purchased several years ago, old contact cases (if I told you the number of cases W has collected over the years, you wouldn't believe me), half used travel toothpaste/mouthwash/fill-in-the-blank---you name it, we had it under those cupboards.  I've been inspired by Pinterest.  Not so much to make over my bathroom, but to get things cleaned up.  We're hoping at some point in the near future to move into a larger home, and it's easier to get rid of things sooner rather than later, right?  I'll keep telling myself that.

While none of those items I collected today had any sentimental value, I know that sometimes, the things we hang onto are our versions of security blankets.  Maybe it's clothing that's too big for you, but disposing of it makes the fact that you're a slimmer version of yourself that much more of a reality.  And that can be scary sometimes.  It could even be something as trivial as a friend on Facebook, someone with whom you no longer have any desire to maintain a relationship with, or simply need to dispose of that false friendship to move on with your life.  I've gotten rid of both, past and present, and initially it feels scary but what I've been teaching myself is that I'm constantly trying to grow into a better version of me.

What are you hanging on to?  What would it take for you to let go, and be okay with letting go?  I challenge you this week to clean house---literally or metaphorically---and get rid of something that's holding you back from becoming the best YOU that you are capable of becoming.

Happy Monday!

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Making Time

Schedule:  what is it?  According to a definition I found online, it's: A plan for carrying out a process or procedure, giving lists of intended events and times. In other words, it's something I need to create for myself when it comes to this blog.  I'm carving out an hour each day.  Yes, one ENTIRE hour, Monday through Friday, to think about the direction in which I want this blog to go.

Tomorrow, I'll start posting on my latest adventures and another pursuit I've been more diligent about:  One New Thing.  In my 30th year, I decided to create an ongoing and constantly expanding bucket list.  While I did try a lot of new things last year, with a full-time class schedule and work, I simply ran out of time to do the things I'd set out to do.  

In the new year, I revisited this list.  I revised it, removed some items, added others, and have been really consistent about trying One New Thing a week.  Some of them will be ongoing, while others will be a one time thing. 

Another thing I've been considering is moving this blog over to WordPress.  Many of the bloggers I follow also use WP, and I think it may be easier for me to learn and do some of the many fun things I've been wanting to do over there.

Until tomorrow,


Saturday, March 10, 2012

One New Thing...

One of the things I vowed to do last year was create a bucket list---at the time, I thought it would be fun to try and pursue completing this bucket list within 2011.  When I started checking items off that list, though, I realized that I enjoyed trying new things.  It took me outside of my comfort zone, and I had some really memorable experiences in the process.  Rather than have "The Year of 52" which is what I'd originally set out to do, I've turned it into a lifelong bucket list.  I have revised that list, removing some items and adding others.  A few of the items I'll get to experience in the next few months include using my passport, another activity to help me with my fear of heights (that will hopefully NOT result in broken digits), a few creative projects for other people (which means wiping the dust off my sewing machine, finally!), and trying out some new spa treatments.  I'd love to say that I'm going to take pictures of all of these, because another thing on my bucket list is to get comfortable with staging photos, etcetera; however, this won't be the case for some of the items. :)  Trust me on this one.

I foresee a photography class in my very near future, as I've always admired photography as an art form.  While one of my bucket list items was to run a half or full marathon, I've realized that my body is not cut out to do that sort of work---I know I can train for it, and that just because I don't think I'm a runner doesn't mean that I can't do that sort of intense physical activity.  I truly believe that my feet aren't cut out to endure that sort of repetitive punishment.  After suffering two broken feet in as many years, I'm vowing to run a race, any distance...and my friend from culinary school, JF, invited me to join Team Glitter for the Diva Dash here in Austin near the end of April.  THIS is totally out of my comfort zone.  It's an obstacle course, but not crazy like Tough Mudder, or some of the other obstacle courses out there that you're lucky to finish alive.  

One of the things I'd like to do here on this blog in the next year is share my "One New Thing" that I've tried during the week.  It may not be earth-shattering or monumental, but it will help me with my commitment to continue challenging myself on a personal basis.  

I'm thoroughly bummed that I didn't post pictures of our soup buffet feast from last Saturday night.  I had a periodontal laser therapy treatment twice last week, putting me on a liquid diet for about two weeks.  Most of my friends and family know that I've been trying to live mostly animal-product free, and I had the opportunity to experiment with smoothies and soups.  I came across a fabulous soup website last weekend, , and we tried a few of the blended soups.  I hadn't had lentil soup in over 20 years, and the recipe I used was so amazing that I ate it the next day.  Cold.  Straight from the refrigerator.  We also had a Roasted Butternut Squash and Apple Soup that was so yummy that my mouth is watering all over again.  The third was pretty unremarkable---but there's not much you can do to perk up Cauliflower and Potato Soup, amiright?

I baked W a loaf of Homestyle Whole Wheat Bread from the King Arthur Flour website that apparently I found a while ago, because I can't seem to find it on their website now!  It utilized mashed potato flakes, dry skim milk, and fresh orange juice.  It was a hit with The Husband, and I figured because I had the supplies that I'd bake another loaf while he was traveling.  Instead, I perused my cookbook collection and came across a Hearty Country Bread that starts with a sponge and is a labor intensive project...but one that I believe he'll thoroughly enjoy.

If you have a stand-up mixer and haven't yet challenged yourself to baking yeast bread from scratch (trust me, once you've made yeast bread with your mixer, you won't go back to using your hands), please do!  It's so simple, and the smell of fresh bread baking in the house is definitely worth the work.

Until next time....which will happen very quickly, as I've had a few other "one new thing" experiences this week! :)

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Bear with pun intended

I've had a lot of changes in the past few weeks---and just realized that my last post was stuck in drafts!

In any case, I'm fortunate enough to have the freedom in my schedule now to blog as frequently as I'd like.  This blog is going to have a dramatic overhaul.  Yes.  This time, I mean it.  I'll be blogging about everything.  Well...not EVERYTHING, because there's a fine line between "sharing" and "oversharing" and I don't think ANYONE wants or needs to hear about EVERYTHING.

In any case, I'll be pursuing my lifelong dream to become the younger, trendier version of Martha Stewart.   Okay, you got me there.  Not so much with the trendier---I'll leave that part up to my fashionisto (I know, I had to make it masculine, because HE is) husband.

Until next time...

The Phantom Blogger