Friday, November 29, 2013

When the lights go out.

Some of the most exhilarating times growing up were spent when a particular storm hit, the electric took a break, and the lights went out. It added an element of excitement to the mundane routine of life—a random surprise thrown in the mix. There could be an underlying sense of fear—dark hallways with lurking monsters and burglers, but my parents took on the burden of making the event happy instead. Instead of being defeated by the dark, my Mom would take out all the candles that were stored away, scattering them all over the house making it smell like a Yankee Candle shop. My Dad would light up the generator—making our kitchen nice and toasty. We’d whip out the old Monopoly board and strike up a game over hot cocoa. The feeling of living like a “Pioneer family” like we had been learning about in school. Needless to say, I looked forward to these times—memories with family, the quiet of the night interuppted by rips of laughter over a bloodbath at Monopoly. 

Just the other night I was taken back with this nostalgia, when our apartments lights flickered, sputtered, and went out. I was immediately filled with warm, fuzzy feelings from the past. Remniscient of my family—knowing what we would be doing right then (if I were still home with them and 10 years younger). So Drew and I whipped out every candle that we owned—making the house smell like a great big pumpkin pie. We didn’t have a generator, so we pulled out every blanket that we own—bundling up, and making ourselves nice and toasty. Instead of Monopoly, we had to act like adults and finish our homework in the light of our laptops. But it was a similar idea. 

Friday, November 22, 2013

My favorite things.

This week I have been especially reminded of how blessed I am to have Andrew in my life. I don’t mean in the sappy, cliche, lovey duvy way—but in the best friend, laughing with each other, and making the most of life together way. There is no denying that I am predominantly the type of person who thrives on organization, sticks to the schedule, and cleans the house with an OCD like manner. And there is no denying that Andrew is predominately the type who thrives on spontanaiety, lives hap-hazardly, and leaves a trail in his wake. There are a few exceptions where the lines are blurred or we share similarities in personality, but between the two of us—we make a pretty good balance of a person.

I love the fact that we can wake up laughing, understand what each other is saying when they can’t even explain it themselves, and do all the weird, quirky things together that make us…us. Outside of the home (and sometimes in), we can control ourselves and be the adults that we should be. But at the end of the day, I love that we can be exactly, bottom-line, who we are with each other, letting loose and having fun. On the flip side, he’s the person that I can talk to about anything. He is that type of person that you just click with—they’re on the same wavelength, they talk your language. That is Andrew with me. There is no concern, no issue, and no topic that I can think of that would be outside of his jurisdiction. There is nothing that I cannot talk to Andrew about, there are no secrets to keep—and even if I tried, Andrew would be able to tell. He knows me better than I know myself. He helps me to be a better person, he makes me want to be a better person—and often through all the little things that he does without realizing it’s impact on me. 

Friday, November 15, 2013

Early mornings.

At the beginning of the semester, we’ve were both surprised (and grateful) to each have just the right job fall in our laps. We couldn’t have asked for a better situation—Andrew gets to work off-campus doing what he loves, and I get to work on-campus doing what I love. Since then, every Tuesday and Thursday we would peel our eyes open at 6am—throw some clothes on, Andrew would drop me off at my office and he would start the two-hour trek to his tree-climbing, arborist sort of job. This was reasonable—though since Daylight savings we are now rising at the ungodly hour of 5am—(it’s still dark, mind you!) and I now sip on my coffee with bloodshot eyes as I sort my e-mails. I write all of this because as much as I have appreciated the thought of early morning—a good start to the day—I have never been a morning person. There have been times in my life in which I was required to be one, but not necessarily out of choice. For the last 6 years I’ve been in the restaurant business, mostly as a server—requiring late hours and therefore late mornings. It has become my lifestyle habit. 

Friday, November 8, 2013

In the spirit of thankfulness.

This week has proven to be a bit more of a struggle than the previous ones. There was quite a bit of homework due, and the house seemed to need extra attention with cleaning, but these things are ongoing and I’m used to them by now. What made this week particularly difficult relates to my health. 

When I was 15, after working a summer camp I came home drained, and as usual, got sick. Nothing new. However, after my fever had passed and my obvious symptoms started to go away—there were feelings of illness that did not. Fast forward months and months of Dr’s visits, blood tests, researching, tears, attempted medications, and frustration—the Dr diagnosed me with Fibromyalgia—of course, this couldn’t be proven beyond my continual symptoms and ruling out everything else. Since then, we’ve been treating it as such and life has gone on. I do what I can to relieve the pain and help my body with its poor immune system and such, but in the end, it will always be there. In a way, I’ve become extremely used to it—I rarely even feel the muscle pain anymore unless it’s a really bad day. I’m used to feeling excessively tired and not getting the best sleep all the time. And I antipate the migraines by having Liquid Advil on hand at all times. It’s become part of my lifestyle and I rarely view it as a separate condition or a handicap. In my opinion, everyone gets aches and pains every once in a while—mine are just a bit more consistent and harsh.

Friday, November 1, 2013

The love of old things.

Growing up, I found it necessary to veer away from the things that my Mom loved lest I grow up to become identical in personality. Not that I disapproved of my Mom’s person, but I desired to be my own individual—classic firstborn independence. Naturally then, I loathed the various historical field trips, long ventures to Goodwill, and neutral colored sweaters. Ironically enough, I found myself taking my Mom to a historical site for her birthday, telling my husband that I wanted to invest in more neutral sweaters, and becoming giddy as I anticipate my next trip to Goodwill. Turns out, I’m a lot more like my Mom than I originally planned on—and for that, I’m extremely grateful. She taught me to appreciate certain things in life, specifically the art of thrifting, and as a result Goodwill is a huge benefactor to my current inspiration and provider of materials for future projects.

A word on thrifting—it is great.

Where I’m from, people thrive on thrifted goods. Not necessarily for financial reasons, but also for the beauty of unique and reusable objects. Granted, the area is lot more “hipster”—so thrifting is essential for random, artsy finds. I define my likes as towing the line between that and classy—or attempting to be—so I suppose you could say that thrifting is “necessary” (my husband might beg to differ).