I’m staying home again today, resting. Needed. I’ve spent nearly two hours this morning online, catching up on Dooce archives. (I haven’t been on her website for what seems like – and might actually be – a year.) Now? I feel guilty. Like I should have spent that time doing something else. What? I don’t know. How is this not resting? Apparently, I should be more productive when I’m resting. I suppose I could be learning something (French, MinutePhysics, Khan Academy), or I could be reading my book (I’m re-reading The Book Thief so it’s fresh when I see the movie – not always the smartest move, but I can’t help myself), or – hey! – I could be updating the book list on this very website, and maybe I will do those things today, but first I need to convince myself that two hours staring vacantly at someone else’s old blog posts isn’t wasted time.
I’m running out of steam on this house-selling business, which is silly, really. It’s only been seven days, and the only thing I have to do is leave work occasionally to take the dog for a walk while people look at our house. Hardly taxing. We’re not in any hurry to sell – we don’t have any deadlines. It would be nice to get rid of the mortgage, but I’m okay with putting off the actual move (that’s hard work). I’m not sure how I have any steam to run out of, actually. What would the steam be for? If I have steam, I should put it to better use (like to Step 4). This steam metaphor is putting Kylie Minogue’s “Locomotion” in my head. After years of silence, I’ve heard it twice in the last few weeks – once on my mix tape and once at IHOP (we had pancakes for dinner on John’s birthday).
Now that I’ve established how little use I have for steam where the sale of the house is concerned, I will take a deep breath, enjoy the quiet of a clean and uncluttered house, and relax. Om mani padme hum.
I’d been hoping this would happen, and it finally has! Kind of. Keeping the house clean is easier than emptying it, rearranging it, and cleaning it, so after what feels like forever (and what was probably only a little over a month), I’m enjoying some time to myself. Well, restful time with John, but when we’re both happily ensconced in our own activities, that’s basically the same thing. We spent all of Saturday hanging out together – the morning (pre-open house) cleaning, the afternoon (during the open house) having a family photo taken, and then having a cupcake and coffee at a little cupcake place with outdoor seating, so Riley could drape himself over our feet and enjoy all the attention he got from passers-by. What’s this about a family photo, you say? We donated to our local volunteer fire department, and as a thank you, they brought in a photographer and gave all donors the opportunity to get a free family portrait taken. They do it every year, and even though we’ve donated every year, we’ve never remembered/bothered to go. They allow pets, so we took Riley. It’ll be interesting to see how it turns out.
Sunday we had NO plans. It was wonderful. There was an afternoon showing, so we disappeared to the park for half an hour, but other than that, our time was our own. Actually, since it was John’s birthday, our time was his to do with as he wished. And he mostly wished for free time, so I call this birthday a success.
Typing “Open House” up there made me thing of Full House the TV show, and man, are those two things not at all related. Unless John Stamos (now, not then) is going to come over to help sell the house. Or move in and help us raise our sassy but cute dog.
Anyway, we had our open house yesterday. Our agent said we had really good turnout. One family stayed an hour, and other another family stayed for TWO hours. The two-hour people are the ones who lingered for 40 minutes on Thursday, the first day we were on the market. No offers yet. (Be pessimistic! Your optimism is scaring them away. Don’t tempt fate!) We had another showing this afternoon, and we have one tomorrow, too. I’ve said (and I keep saying) that we’re not in any hurry here, but now we’re in limbo, and I don’t want to stay in limbo. I should be putting this time to good use (see Step 4), but I figured I deserve a couple of days of relaxing before I start obsessing over the next thing. It’ll come soon enough. (Also, it’s John’s birthday today, so no doing not-fun things.)
It has come to my attention (again – this is something I realize anew every so often) that I could never be a vampire. After four days of nonstop rain (it started Wednesday night and didn’t stop until Sunday night) and constant gloominess, the sun came out on Monday, and I couldn’t have been happier. I could never live in a world where I never saw the sun. (Also, I don’t want to drink blood or be dead.) I don’t have to see the sun all day, or even every day, but four days in a row without it – that’s too much. I enjoy the rain, I like listening to it, I like falling asleep to it. I don’t particularly want to be out in it much (I got fairly well soaked running errands on Friday – I had to buy mulch in the rain – and then we did our yardwork on Sunday in a constant drizzle. Felt very British.), but it’s nice to look at, nice to be snuggled up warm and dry while frantically prepping your house for sale. And then came the sun. Monday was a perfect October day, all blue skies and leaves changing colors. Days like that make all that rain worth it.
I’m off to DC for work this morning, and I didn’t want to get up early enough to go to the gym for a real workout, so I decided to make it a yoga day. I don’t feel like what I did counts as working out since I didn’t do it for long, but it felt nice. It was quiet and peaceful and full of stretching. And I think I needed it to balance out the very stressful dream about traveling to Peru. We were packing to get ready for the big vacation, but I couldn’t remember the name of the town or area in Peru we were going to, so I couldn’t look up the weather forecast, and I didn’t know what to pack. I was scanning my email for the details, but all I could find were pictures of goats, and none of them were captioned with the name of the town. Very stressful. Then John’s alarm went off, and I bolted upright, arms flailing, totally startled awake. I hate alarms. I needed yoga.
Now I’m eating my breakfast of granola and yogurt, listening to the yoga station on Pandora (which is great until the ad breaks – jarring), and glancing at the clock to see how much more time I have before I have to get in the shower and get moving (not much). But that way leads to rushing and stress, and who needs that?
I have decided to stop feeling like I’m behind on everything. I’m not behind on the internet; now I’ve got lots of wonderful things to catch up on. I’m not behind on reading (now that I’ve finished my book club book); I’m reading at my own leisurely pace. I’m not behind at work; I’ve just suddenly got two jobs to do, and I’m keeping up as best I can. I’m not behind on blogging, either. It’s not like I can go back and post something for all those days my mind was elsewhere. I’m where I’m supposed to be, and that’s okay.
Yoga class was nice last night. Can you tell?
This week is going to be a good week. And when I say good, I mean uneventful, quiet, restful, and not at all like last week. Work will slow down from last week’s breakneck pace. John will continue to get better. No one is coming over this weekend, so I won’t have to race around and plan and shop and clean. It’s going to be heavenly.
During the meditation part of yoga class last night (my favorite part), I was thinking* about doing yoga at home. I always mean to do it the rest of the week, but I never do. Then last night, I realized that since we put the desk away (the one I had the puzzle out on – the table wasn’t big enough and the puzzle was going nowhere, so I quit), there’s a ton of open space in the library (that used to be the dining room). It gets all of the morning and midday sunlight through the east window and the bay windows, so it’s a cheerful, sunny room, and ZOMG I’m going to do yoga in there! Isn’t that just disgustingly perfect? Yoga in a room with sunlight streaming from windows all around? So I tried it this morning. At 6:30. Flaw #1: it’s still dark at 6:30. Flaw #2: it was pouring down rain. Actually, Flaw #2 was just fine with me. I found a yoga station on Pandora, and that kind of music combined with the rain beating on the windows was very relaxing. Then I lost all my zen peacefulness when I kicked the baby gate on my up the stairs and pulverized the toenail on my second toe.
*I don’t think I’m supposed to think during meditation, but it’s hard to just be.
Sorry about yesterday. This week was kind of odd. Busy odd. Like, I can’t remember sitting down and relaxing much odd, even though I know I must have. My brain needs lots of help to get out of work-mode, which is why I’ve been relying on other websites so much. Today will be no different. Thanks to Tom and Lorenzo, let’s talk about Channing Tatum.
I like him okay (I’ve seen him in one movie and a couple of interviews, and he was plenty likeable), but I don’t find him attractive at all. Certainly not HAWT, like so many other women seem to feel. I think it’s his head. And neck. The combination of the two. They’re thesame size. I have the same issue with The Rock and Vin Diesel. It’s a type, and it’s not mine. Channing Tatum, at least in this suit, looks great if you only look from the shoulders down.
I still think he’s a little too body-builder for me. I’m sure John will be relieved to know I’m not going to leave him for Channing Tatum.
I’m supposed to be going to yoga tonight. I don’t want to. I had a facial today, so I’m plenty relaxed, and I want to stay home. I want to stay home and read and play on the internet and watch TV and do laundry (okay, that’s more of a need than a want) and stay home. Also, I want to stay home.
Toast and tea (decaf English Breakfast) for dinner. Yum.
The weekend is upon us, and I can’t tell you how happy that makes me. Sure, we have work to do (seeding the lawn is on the agenda for tomorrow), but it’s a THREE-DAY WEEKEND. Three whole days. Once I stopped working today, I was even inspired to clean up a bit. I may have been watching Cinderella (and singing along) while washing dishes and cleaning the countertops, but you weren’t there so you’ll never know for sure.
I started reading the next book club book (Before I Go to Sleep) last night – it’s fascinating. The next meeting is a week from today. I’ll have this one finished before the weekend is over.
I had my first facial ever today. And a massage. It was a very nice afternoon. John got me a Massage Envy gift certificate for those services for my birthday (WAY back in February). I don’t know why it took me so long to use it. It was wonderful. I am seriously considering making this a regular thing. (I like being pampered.)
I had a really annoying song stuck in my head earlier today, and a friend of mine at work asked me which one. It was “I Love You Like a Love Song” by I don’t know who, and I told him that the part where she goes “beep beep beep beep beep beep” wouldn’t get out of my brain. I got corrected immediately. He said it’s by Selena Gomez, and she’s actually saying “repeat repeat repeat” there. We had a minor battle over who was more embarrassed: me for not knowing the words or him for knowing them AND being able to name the teenybopper who sings them. I let him win that one (he’s around my age).
Roxy just came over to say hello and would I please give her the crumbs from my sandwich. At least she said please. She also told me that I have no unifying theme today, so I should quit now. Smart dog.
We’re at the breakfast table this morning with Gaby, who is writing in her journal about what we did yesterday.
Gaby: Well, I want to write that we saw monuments, but…I don’t know how to spell “saw”.
John couldn’t hold the laughter in. She had no problem with monuments. And then I heard her spell Washington with very little hesitation. She’s a genius!
We’re all on our laptops (except Gaby, who’s using a cute little spiral-bound notebook) this morning, after a nice lie-in. Wolf Trap cancelled last night’s performance of The Pirates of Penzance, so we stayed in and had our picnic dinner in the family room with The Muppet Show. It’s just as well – we were all pretty worn out after the heat and the driving. We met up with Jess (Hi, Jess!) for a yummy lunch in Annapolis, blew some bubbles at the harbor (also thanks to Jess), ate some really good ice cream, and tried on lots of hats at Hats in the Belfry. Hey! That’s news for us – John found a hat. One that fits and looks pretty cool and will keep him from burning his head every time he goes out in the sun. It’s a miracle. I fell in love with a plum-colored cloche hat, but then I looked at the price tag. I just can’t spend $175 on a hat. Even when it’s this cool.
Today the plan is to stay inside and hide from the heat. No plans, no schedule, just whatever we want to do, whenever we want to do it. And now that the internet is back (the storm late Friday night knocked it for most of yesterday)…you know, I really don’t know how to end that sentence. I don’t remember where I was going with it when I started it. Now that the internet is back, we can…play on the internet? But we’re not really going to do that today, so…yeah. No idea.
I haven’t mentioned it much here, but we’re about to go on vacation. We’re supposed to have internet in our cottage, but we were supposed to have internet in our cottage in Wales last year, too, and that just didn’t happen. So either I’ll be able to post intermittently over the next week and a half or I’ll be completely silent until Memorial Day. We’ll see. I just wanted you all to be prepared because I know how much you rely on me to start (or finish) every day. You just can’t get along without me, right? Right?
I think we should live somewhere where we can legitimately call our house a cottage without getting laughed at. I would like to live in a cottage.
Anyway, Mom called me yesterday evening to discuss when and where she and Dad are going to pick us up on Saturday, and that conversation kick-started my pre-trip hyperventilation* because you know what? I hadn’t even THOUGHT about that. I got off the phone and fluttered around the house for a couple of minutes, wondering how stupid it might be to take two hours out of my last useful 5 or 6 hours (not counting working and sleeping) to go to the gym for my fun classes. Reason and sanity eventually won out. There wasn’t THAT much to do and exercise and yoga would be good for me, especially in that state. I came home from the gym much calmer and I managed to get to bed (packing about halfway done) before I could think too much about what I hadn’t finished yet. This morning, though – the countdown had begun and I was climbing the walls. WHY was I going to work? WHY wasn’t I packed already? I hadn’t arranged for a cab to pick us up, I still needed to pick up some prescription refills, the dogs have to get to the kennel, I needed to pick up an adapter from Best Buy, I haven’t FINISHED PACKING YET, and oh yeah, I have to go to work and actually WORK. (Sorry about the caps. It’s been that kind of day.) To make matters worse (as pointed out by Corey, Brother of the Year), I went to Starbucks. Sure, let’s fuel the crazy with espresso. Makes all kinds of sense. So I rocketed into the office and my work day, made three or four more lists (mostly work, some trip), crossed everything off in record time, and all I have to do now is set my automatic out-of-office message and go home so I can cross the last four things off my trip list (one of them – finish packing – has a list of its own). Surprisingly, the tension ebbed as the day went on. I got enough of a head start this morning (maybe thanks to the coffee?) that I feel pretty normal now. My vacation is about to begin.
*The author reserves the right to exaggerate for effect. No brown paper bags were harmed in the making of this post.
It was cold today. Like wintry cold. And it flurried. So why not have a fire? John is working on his thesis, but he can do that on his laptop, and I can curl up in a chair by the fire with my book. My book that looks eerily like a laptop. A laptop that does magic tricks and will transform into a real book in just a few minutes. As soon as I’m done catching up on the internet. Yes, the whole internet. I’m that good.
I can’t even count the ways that I am sore. Last night was my first night back at my Muscle Blast and yoga classes since Thanksgiving. I’m very happy to be back, I really like those classes, but oh my god I hurt so much now. Every muscle we worked on is screaming at me. The aches sorta crept in one by one throughout the day, but they’re all here now. Hi everybody! Now go away.
I spent the entire day in a tiny little room with my boss (plus an hour and a half each way in a car with her to get to that tiny little room). I need some space. I need some alone time. And I need some sleep.
You know what’s awesome? Tomorrow’s Friday and it’s the beginning of a three-day weekend! You know what’s awesome-er than awesome? The first season (well, the 2005 season) of Doctor Who arrived in the mail yesterday! With extras and commentary and lots of hours of Doctor and Rose goodness.
Does anyone know where we can find the last season of Torchwood (the season set in the US) online? It was on Netflix for a little while, but it’s gone now.
My plan for the weekend:
- Do my homework (I have an assignment due for Data Modeling and Design)
- Finish Faithful Place
- Start The Hunger Games
- Grocery store
- Blah blah other boring things
- Oh, also SLEEP
It’s amazing how much better I feel, how much looser, more relaxed, now that my exam is over. I didn’t know how much it was weighing on me until I was done. (It went well, for the most part. I think. (Does a comma go in that sentence? I can’t decide.)) I was telling Mom earlier that I think most of the stress comes from trying to balance school and work. I don’t feel like I have enough time to devote to school because of work, and I don’t want it to take up all my free time because, you know, free time is necessary, but I can’t really relax in my free time because I know I have schoolwork to do. I know – life is hard, and I’m only taking one class. Boo hoo. Now shut up. I’m saying I personally don’t handle it very well. But now, now that the test is over, now that all that’s left is work (which slows down during the holidays because everyone takes time off) and present shopping, I can maybe enjoy these here holidays. Take some deep breaths. Look at the pretty lights. My neighbor at the bottom of the street has these icicle lights that actually look they’re dripping. But she might think it’s weird if I go stand on her sidewalk and stare…
It’s the Sunday after Thanksgiving. I finished my calculus quiz last night. I don’t have to do ANYthing today. I feel like I should. But why? I did some stuff. I updated my book list so it’s a table and includes dates and stuff, now that I’m tracking that (see?). What else? Um…the internet. I’m all caught up. On EVERYthing. Or I was ten minutes ago. I’m sure I’m behind now. But that doesn’t matter because I just got my quiz back from my professor and I got an EXCELLENT. Because I am excellent. One final exam to go and I will be done with differential equations. And with that, I have permission to continue doing nothing today. Because I am what? Oh right. Excellent. That’s me. Excellently lazy.
Seriously, could today have been any better? Only if it had unicorns and sparkles. And it’s not over yet. There’s hope. Sure, we got up super early on a Saturday, but it was only so we could go to the giant used book sale that happens every six weeks in a warehouse in Annapolis. Worth it. AND I had a croissant and my favorite candy-coffee from Starbucks for breakfast on the way (tall, skim, no whip white mocha with two pumps of toffee nut – yes, I’m one of those now). Extra worth the early wake-up. AND we hung out with Jess while looking for books and then having bagels. Better than extra worth it. And THEN we went to IKEA and bought two more bookshelves, upper shelf extensions for those two plus the six at home that didn’t already have them, plus two wall shelves to go over the couch (and hold more books – maybe the graphic novels?). We’ve spent the afternoon since then putting the shelves and the extension together while watching Law & Order: SVU, and now we’re going to pick up dinner from somewhere and settle in and watch a movie.
A day like today makes me so very happy. Books, best friend, shelves, dinner, and a movie, a whole day hanging out with John, and sure, I didn’t do any calculus like originally planned, but John and I worked it out on the way home from IKEA. Today we get the furniture part out of the way and relax a little. Tomorrow, we’ll run, mow the lawn (it grew, like, two feet in 8 days), and do homework (my calculus, his thesis). Sunday is the responsible day.