Being back home for Winter Break. Even though my parents are just as stalwart and fierce about their convictions and beliefs, as I am in my own, it's good to know they still have a fire in their soul, as well. Even if their fire has a different knowledge base than my own, which may cause some friction between us. And well, it makes me realize not everything I've gotten from my parents is bad; they raised me to have my own tenacity!
Tenacity and fire in their soul - such an awesome way to word it.
I'm sending out annual bills for my 2019 payroll services and I had to raise my rates by 25-30% due to increases in costs to me (which my price increase doesn't completely cover). As you might imagine, I was pretty stressed about doing this to my people, who are all my favorite clients, and who are all small or even micro businesses.
Most clients have been very kind and supportive of the increase. One client responded with:
I can't live without you!! 😊
Thank you so much for all you do for me and our company Jocelyn. You truly keep me sane!
Enjoying a delicious dinner with my parents and knowing that even with their different views on nutrition, there are still some meals we can all agree are awesome! We had a salad of duck, hard cheeses, cabbages, avacado, mangoes, butter, and with some berries and butter-fried ripe plantains on the side. We were all quite happy and loved the meal we had together! And I had fun frying up the plantains!
-On Tuesday, I got certified as an Open Water Diver, which made me quite happy!
-On Wednesday (yesterday), I visited Calico Fresh Market, which provides raw milk near the Houston area. I bought raw milk and tasted it for the first time in my life, and it was awesome! It is so delicious and creamy! And I also had kefir made from raw cow milk and a few varieties of cream cheese made from raw cow milk, and those were delicious, too! :) Yummmm!!!
-And this morning, I had a pleasant walk around a neighborhood pond and saw lots of ducks flying in V formations in the early morning sky. I also saw a heron fly down to the pond and catch a fish. I heard the babbling of water as it flowed through some reeds between two of the neighborhood ponds.
Very simple pleasures today:
--no more fever and infections are almost gone!
--energy and brain power are back up!
--my vacuum worked to suck up spilled crumbs on the couch because I took the time to monkey with it a little while ago
--coffee and a nice RMH fire both made by my guy this morning :-)
--burning lots of unrecyclable paper and paperboard to clear out the trash! (amazing how happy this makes me...I don't think I'm a pyro... ;-) )
Spending a few days after Christmas with as little electronics as I could. I consider myself to pretty low use on electronics, and using even less electronics felt nice. It was good to not be answering emails, to not be replying to any text messages, to not be worried about getting in touch with anyone but those around me in person.
Homemade cassava flour bread with leftover turkey and fresh homemade cranberry sauce for dinner last night.
Toad in a hole with the cassava bread and bright yolked eggs for breakfast this morning.
(I am not one to pander about OMG exclamations! I'm/we're trying to eat low(er) carb or anti-inflammatory foods. Plus, I generally don't try to create gluten- or grain-free bread because potatoes or squash are much easier, and often more complex nutritionally, starches to make. Which all is to say that this grain-free bread was a rare, joyous treat!!)
Being open to my friends about the stress and anxiety in my head about graduation, body image, and what I'll be doing after college. It's hard to open up and put myself in a vulnerable position, but it's nice to have people I am safe with and can confide in.
Th super frigid weather we are having here in Missoula really makes everything else in my life seem like peanuts. So, I am thankful for difficult weather, because it helps to give me a warmer and kinder view of the world.
Some times (who am I kidding - lots of times!) I don't want to get out of my cozy bed in the morning. I love putting on music I enjoy and it helps. This morning (many mornings) it was a playlist YouTube created for me based on my music video playing history there. Ahh. Tunes to get moving to!
Corned beef! They had corned beef for lunch at the college cafeteria, and it was delicious! Corned beef is one my most favorite foods!!! I ate as much of it as I could! That was so yummy! And the roasted cabbage with it was awesome, too! I love the moisture and tenderness of good corned beef!
-Walking along the Kim Williams Nature Trail, with nice bright sunshine beating down!
-Seeing and hearing birds flitting around the bushes along the Clark Fork River!
-Seeing beautiful deep red and brown shoots coming off of trees and shrubs, signaling the coming of Spring!
We had the International Festival today, and I attended the full six hours of the event and loved it!
I learned Irish contra dancing, Cuban salsa dancing, and Chinese Taichi!
I watched Pacific Islander dance performances, Chinese dance performances, listened to several different musicians (Japanese, Russian, Indian, Hawaiian)!
I got a Henna tattoo of a mandala on my right hand!
I enjoyed walking along the Kim Williams Nature Trail again!
(I'm really thinking I way way way underestimated seasonal effects on mood, because I remember being more outgoing and happy during the summer and early Autumn. And then, I started closing up and becoming a little colder, more worried, and more anxious as it was getting colder and darker. And finishing therapy and last year of college probably exacerbated my emotions way more than usual. I would have had so much more trouble taking all the risks that I did today, especially learning three different styles of dancing in full view of everyone to see, if it was just a few weeks earlier/darker/colder outside than it is today.)
Thank you for all the wonderful people in my life.
This morning I reconnected with one of my friends I had distanced myself from. I was scared and stressed and worried this Winter and having seasonal depression and bonus anxiety from college, and I had distanced myself from a lot of people.
I will be reconnecting with another friend later this evening, and I'm a little worried about that, just because it feels awkward to me explaining my bucket(s) of psychology and thoughts. And to explain all of the things I am planning on doing. and forging my own path.
And I don't know what I have done to deserve all the wonderful people in my life. It's overwhelming that these people are there for me.
I don't feel worthy of all the goodness that they bring. I am deeply grateful that they are in my life. Thank you.
So, it's been an awesome week! The simple pleasures have been all of the recent hiking in Missoula I have been doing this entire week!
I got to the top of Mount Sentinel!
I trekked down the Hellgate Canyon Trail!
I saw many a beautiful sunsets this week!
Because the weather has been awesome since I got back from Spring Break, it has greatly lifted my mood, boosted my confidence, and improved my self-esteem. And it's also lifted my seasonal depression, which, as I have been finding out also affects my desire to want to go on dates. I went back on the dating scene this week, and I invited three different guys to join me on hikes, and all three cancelled at the last moment. That wasn't much of an issue, which is why I invite them on hikes, instead of things I wouldn't do without someone else, because hikes are enjoyable to me whether or not anyone else joins me! To see if I was being a bit too much of a hard-ass by not meeting guys on anything other than a hike, I visited a guy at a bar, who was supposed to have gone on a hike with me, and I was bored. I don't get what is interesting about drinking, bar scenes, or any kind of smoking. Anyhow, long story short, I read the book I brought with me at the bar, bought nothing, and let that guy go on his merry way. Yeah... There's a certain outdoorsy intelligent kind of lumberjack man I want, and I think keeping a hike as one of my minimum requirements for a date is a good idea! And well, also, if there's going to be any passionate love of any kind, I would much rather have my adrenaline, endorphins, and epinephrine come from something I consider awesome (e.g. a nice long hike, swimming, walking, etc) than from stuff I consider disrespectful to my body and/or just boring (e.g. alcohol, illicit substances, etc)! Because, yeah, for me, an awesome date would be a 4-hour hike, picnic'ing, and then sharing a tent and enjoying warm tea and dark chocolate!
So, back to more simple pleasures, (dismounting my high horse) I have also enjoyed much very dark chocolate this week, and that has been quite yummy! And the cafeteria on campus had a tiny food intro session for sampling new dishes they're hoping to introduce to the menu to increase the campus's seafood sustainaility- rockfish, mussels and clams, catfish, whitefish, and crawfish! I loved all of those dishes! My favorites were the rockfish, mussels and clams, and crawfish!
I was singing (to the Sound of Music) "The hill is a-bloom with purple henbit...!"
It's a pile of fill dirt at the rental that no one ever smoothed down, where a pool used to be. It's very pretty right now :)