Sunday, July 31, 2011

A Week in the Life: Day 6

Day 6 :: July 30, 2011
Saturdays...yay for Saturdays. It is pretty nice having my own personal barista, it is even better than a coffee shop! I worked a bit on photo editing, blogging etc. while we enjoyed our coffee & breakfast.
Our friends Jordan and Kaitlin invited us to the beach. When they picked us up, Kaitlin brought us a box of salt water taffy from her family reunion to Delaware last week, one of my favorite things in this world to eat.
We went to Trails 1 at San Onofre. It is a state park so the beaches usually aren't as packed as a public beach. You have to hike down a huge hill before you get there but it is completely worth it. Jordan and Kaitlin and Brent surfed while I took photos, hunted for treasures, and soaked up the sun - yay for summer!
After the beach we went to a Mexican taco stand in Dana Point called Aurora's. On the weekends they barbecue whole chickens and for $6 you can get half a chicken, beans, rice, tortillas and salsa. We were all so hungry, we just sat in silence as we blissfully scarfed down our food. I never ever drink soda, but I had a sip of this ice cold, from the bottle Coca-Cola and it was so refreshing!
We rushed home, showered and prettied up a bit then had a drink with Brent's parents and some of their family who were in town.
We had planned to see a movie but after sun and wine, I was exhausted. So a little snack and cappuccino and I was ready to go!
We saw the final Harry Potter and both loved it. I think did such a great job with the whole series and this last one may have been my favorite of them all, even if it did scare me a bit :)
[Observation]: It is amazing to look at this day and see how much I did. If you have followed my blog at all, you know how much of a problem I have had with chronic pain and a year ago there is no way I could have even sat through a full movie. Not only did I sit through a 2 hour movie but I hiked up and down a steep hill, did a lot of walking and sitting in the car. I still have really difficult days with pain and exhaustion but I finally feel things are moving in the right direction. Over the last few months I have finally had relief with the severity of my pain, allowing me to be more active, spend more time with friends and family, and I am so much happier because of it. The hardest parts of being in pain 24/7 was the feeling of not being able to do what I wanted when I wanted to do it, having pain completely control my life, putting on a happy face so I wouldn't make others feel as miserable as I did, and feeling like none of it would never ever get better. But after 3 years of debilitating back pain, finally getting some relief is absolutely incredible. I feel so fortunate to be alive, so fortunate to have the amazing support from my family and unending patience and understanding from my boyfriend. I truly believe I am supposed to use my story and health history to help others, and this is just all part of that story.
[Favorite part of the day]: Reflecting on the above.
♥ ♥ ♥
Happy Saturday!

Saturday, July 30, 2011

Simple Pleasures Saturday #6

As my mom said to me today, TGIS. I remember doing an "All About Me" project in elementary school where we had to make a big poster with a picture of ourselves and all our favorite things. One of the topics was your favorite day and almost everyone said Friday, I of course said Saturday. Sure Friday has that feeling of "ahhhh I am done, it is the weekend," but Saturday you have the entire day and don't have to go to work the next day (unless of course you work weekends). So won't you join me in acknowledging those simple little pleasures that are making you happy on this fine Saturday? For me...

Receiving a gift of salt water taffy brought all the way from Delaware
Highly entertaining people watching
Waking up and not having to work
A sip of ice cold Coca-Cola from the bottle
A nice glass of wine
Text message from a friend I lost touch with
A piece of very berry coffee cake

♥ Happy Saturday! ♥

A Week in the Life :: Day 5

Day 5 :: July 29, 2011

What song I am listening to right now: "Down in the Valley" by The Head and the Heart
[Price of gas]: $3.79/ gallon
[Temperature]: 73 degrees F
[Summary of the day]: Breakfast- cottage cheese with peaches and blueberries. Cappuccino. Work. Lunch - Flatbread pizza. Work. Work. Blog. Phone w/ mom. Shower. 30 minute workout. Walk to the mailbox. Subway. Bonfire. Sleep.
[Top news Headlines (just the first ones I saw)]:
"U.S. Running out of Time for Debt Deal"
"Funerals Following the Norway Attack"
"Apple Grabs 2/3 of Mobile Phone Industry Profits"
"Amy Winehouse's Death: Family Suspects Alcohol Withdrawal"
[Movies released today]: "Cowboys & Aliens" - "Crazy, Stupid, Love" - "The Smurfs"
[Favorite moment]: Singing along to songs at the bonfire. I can't tell you the last time I sang around a fire..probably at camp? It was hilarious and everyone loved it.
[Observation]: Although it is kind of nice being able to work in my pajamas, I think I am more preductive when I am actually showered, dressed, makeup-ified...

A few photos from my day...

::What I woke up to::
::A heart-shaped weed growing out of the parking lot::
::On a roll with Qrank scores::
::Stroll to the mailbox::

Friday, July 29, 2011

A Week in the Life :: Day 4

Day 4 :: July 29, 2011

On Thursdays I normally go to Brent's house first thing in the morning and we have breakfast & coffee, sometimes exercise and just relax until he goes to work. But I am currently so busy between photo projects, working, and other goals I am trying to meet, so I stayed home and got right to work.
It was a very busy all day, but I take 10 minute breaks every hour & during that time I managed to Play Qrank...
...write a few postcards...
...clean out some things from my car...
...make a delicious grilled cheese sandwich with cheddar, tomato, grilled zucchini & jalapeƱo...
...and ate outside in the sun with a hopeful Ella.
By 5:00 I was exhausted. But I went straight into uploading & editing photos. I have been feeling very overwhelmed lately... tending to take on too much at once and push myself to the point of not enough sleep and high stress levels. Brent was planning to meet up with a friend down at the beach to surf, and although I wanted to go I was worn out and kind of crabby. But I knew it would be good for me, and I am so glad I went.
I love big cities, I always have and absolutely loved the time I spend in San Francisco. But especially in the last few years, I have really come to realize just how much I love and need the beach.
I have such fond memories of beach days with my family when I was growing up, I have never lived more than 10 minutes from the Ocean (even when I was in SF), and it is incredibly therapeutic for me.
No matter what mood I am in, the beach always makes me feel so happy and alive - the never-ending beauty, the feeling of walking on wet sand, the sound of crashing waves, the smell of the sticky salty air, and the sunsets.
When we walked down tonight, I immediately felt the stress leave my mind and body and I felt calmer, lighter and happier. The sunset was gorgeous and it seemed to last forever.
♥ ♥ ♥
::Observations:: I base way too many decisions on what I think everyone else wants me to do, and not enough on what I actually want.

::Favorite Moment:: Feeling the incredibly warm ocean wash over my feet.

::Picture of me today:: I call it "no makeup & frizz fest but I don't care"

I hope you had a wonderful day!

Thursday, July 28, 2011

A Week in the Life :: Day 3

Day 3 :: June 27, 2011

Today I just got up & wasn't feeling well so I made tea and did my best to get some work done.
::A cup of feel better tea::
::The view from the kitchen::

♥ ♥ ♥
After work I went straight to Brent's sister's house to photograph their new baby... my quasi-nephew as I like to call him.
His name is Drake and he just turned 1 month old, and is he ever cute!
This last month has really been my first time being around a baby.
Don't have a big family and none of my friends have kids yet.
I headed home & edited photos while I watched my favorite guilty pleasure TV shows...Keeping up with the Kardashians, Teen Mom and Big Brother as I edited photos & snacked on cherries.
Does anyone know where the saying life is a bowl of cherries came from? I tried to search for it but didn't find anything concrete. But I did learn there is a happy little song...

Life is just a bowl of cherries
Don't take it serious,
Life's too mysterious
You work,
You save,
You worry so
But you can't take your dough
When you go, go, go

So keep repeating "It's the berries."
The strongest oak must fall
The sweet things in life
To you were just loaned
So how can you lose
What you've never owned

Life is just a bowl of cherries
So live and laugh, aha!
Laugh and love
Live and laugh,
Laugh and love,
Live and laugh at it all!

"Life is Just a Bowl of Cherries" - George Gershwin

Finally, I ate a Drumstick ice cream cone & snuggled with Ella. The best part of those is the very very bottom of the cone that is filled with solid chocolate. YUM.

:: Observations :: This is day 3 of 7 and so far they have all started with me not feeling well. This post seemed all over the place, but that is kind of how I felt today.
:: Favorite Moment :: My first time seeing baby Drake smile.
:: Proud Moment :: My highest score ever on Qrank

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

A Week in the Life :: Day 2

Day 2: July 26, 2011

Woke up. Bad dreams. I hate that feeling of waking up after a night of bad dreams, but the nice thing is I had the day off from work so I didn't have to worry about anything when I got up. I went for a swim and it was particularly tough, must have been because of how tired I was but I powered through. It felt like backwards day today, no work, I wasn't hungry for breakfast so I skipped it, and I made a latte at noon. My morning:

...shower and makeup...
...feed the fish...
...more music while I accomplished some photo projects.
Tuesdays are Brent's afternoons off and we had planned to go to the Sawdust Festival in Laguna Beach, something I look forward to it every year.
It is an outdoor art fair with a huge variety of local & incredibly talented artists showing their creations from pottery to photography to paintings to paper goods to glass blowing to jewelry and more. Being the lover of hearts that I am one of my favorite things to do is to pick out all the hearts in all the different mediums. Glass blown hearts, ceramic heart bowls, paintings of hearts, photos of hearts, sterling silver heart necklaces, greeting cards with hearts, heart-shaped wind chimes, the list goes on. There is a sign at the entrance that says "please ask before taking photos, artists may bite." So out of respect I tucked away my camera...except for this little beauty:
We had brought our bikes with us and after browsing the festival we rode our bikes into the downtown area and had lunch. Laguna Beach is one of my favorite little towns, so many wonderful art galleries, funky gift shops, incredible views and great restaurants. If you have never been and you are ever in southern California, I would recommend it!
The restaurant we ate at was one of those places where you were definitely paying for the location - looking out at the beach - but we were both starving and it did the trick. I had clam chowder, Brent fish and chips.
After lunch we rode around a little bit and stumbled on this really cute cupcake shop called Casey's Cupcakes. Everything is pink and glam and the cupcakes looked amazing but I was too full to indulge. I know, I know, how could I pass one up right? I would have brought one home with me if I didn't have to balance it on top of my head while biking back to the car. Guess I will have to go back for one. Sigh.
We headed back to the car, went to the grocery store and finally home. I had leftover cream from dinner a few nights ago and I knew I wouldn't cook anything else with it so I made some homemade whipped cream to top a hot mocha for me and a blended mocha for Brent. It hit the spot!
Some episodes of Weeds, relaxing, and the day was done. The end.

::Today's Food::
Cottage cheese w/ blueberries (from the farmer's market), crackers with ham & cheese & jam, sliced bell peppers, carrots & cucumbers, bowl of clam chowder, green salad w/ balsamic, m&m's and chocolate chips, mocha w/ whipped cream.

Looking at all the art at the Sawdust Festival, riding bikes, day off from work...Tuesdays in general are always great days.

Hope you had a nice day!
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