Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Dads

Last week we came home to frozen pipes after a trip to Mexico (more on that coming soon), making for an unwanted dramatic end to a trip that already had plenty of it's own drama (thanks, United Airlines). The next morning that same pipe promptly burst after thawing out, and with no shutoff valve to our building (thanks, landlord) we spent the day with two plumbers and water spraying all over our basement. All is good in the end though, nothing was ruined and we have a four foot section of brand spanking new copper pipe. 

Situations like this aren't usually that bad since I'm pretty handy around the house, thanks to my dad. When I was younger, he was always showing me and teaching me stuff that I didn't care about at the time, but that knowledge sticks and when the shit hits the fan (literally or figuratively), you can access it when it counts. Like when your pipes bust and you need to act fast. I may never change my own oil again, or change a tire, but I could if I had to. I watched that guy finish our family home's basement all on his own, so I could tell you a thing or two about hanging drywall. 

So, when I was installing our new insulation around the new pipe, taking precautions Dad would be proud of, I decided to thank him. I don't talk to my family as often as I should, so I thought he would appreciate an out of the blue text. 

Thanks, Dad, for teaching me as much home repair stuff as you did.

Thursday, January 7, 2016

Happy New Year!

Sisters together on Christmas.


Hope everyone had a nice holiday break! Mine was wonderful, I had just enough time to relax at home, spend time with family and friends and get a little bit of work done. Still lots to do though! 2016 will probably be another busy year as I work towards a few career and personal goals.

As for resolutions, I don't generally make any, though I suppose it's a good time to focus in on the improvements we're always trying to make in our lives. Here are some of the things I'm currently working on: read more, sleep more, more me-time, more focus and intent, more kindness towards myself and others and continuing my effort to eat healthy. Oh, and be more assertive and say what I want.

Thursday, November 19, 2015

Try to be Shakespeare...



"Try to be Shakespeare, leave the rest to fate."

This was another quote read by my yoga instructor that perked me up. She described the meaning as not comparing yourself to others, but it reminded me of an article I recently read by Mark Manson called "In Defense of Being Average." The take away from the story 'was shoot for greatness, but be content with mediocrity.' It's a really great read that pinpoints how today's limited attention only allows for the extreme and can make us feel inadequate when in reality, most everyone falls somewhere in the middle, just like us. Real happiness lies in contentment when we embrace just that and--wouldn't you know it--stop comparing ourselves to others. 

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

You are not a tree.

I talk about leaving Chicago all the time. I don't know if I ever actually will, but after all these years here, the city has lost a lot of the allure that it had for me in the beginning.

Then I recently saw this quote on facebook (originally shared by Kenny Rogers) and decided I've either got to stop complaining or do something about it. Lots of life decisions to be made in the near-ish future, so we'll see what happens.


Friday, November 13, 2015

Now Playing: Otherwhile

Digging this new Otherwhile album because, well, I love Stevie Nicks. I found their song "Die Hard" in Spotify's New Music Friday playlist today and it sounds just like the one with the scarves.

I can't find much about them, but apparently the band is led by former Ra Ra Riot cellist Alexandra Lawn, and in this Brooklyn Vegan article from last year they list Fleetwood Mac and The Pretenders as influences. ORLY.



Another song that stood out in the New Music list today was Donna Missal "Keep Lying," but I don't know anymore about her. Could just be an initial reaction. TBD.

"Are you SAD?"

A co-worker asked me this yesterday, referring to the seasonal depressive sads, and it got me thinking.

The last few weeks have been pretty rough for me, but for no particular reason. Yeah, weather has been getting colder and my public transit commute has been a special kind of hell lately, so I thought I was just feeling down because of that. But I feel like everything I attempt, whether it's as simple as getting to work or just trying to plan ahead a little bit is met with resistance. In short I've just been feeling generally down and discouraged. And angry. I have a lot of anxiety and anger, too. Plus my focus has been almost nonexistent, even writing and editing this post is hard to care about.

It's been especially bad since the daylight savings time change almost two weeks ago, so maybe the shorter days and lack of daylight combined with the other stuff really is affecting me. I always feel this way this time of year, but I think I'm more attuned to it this year since I'm working out more and not drinking alcohol as much to distract me.

For this very reason, I planned an extended warm getaway for the tough winter months, but that's still a couple months away. I've finally decided to get one of those phototherapy light boxes that a friend who goes through the same thing recommended, so hopefully that helps some. I'll go ahead and make a check-in appointment with my old therapist, too.

Anybody else got the sads? How do you deal with it?

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Happy Back To The Future Day!



It's here. October 21, 2015. We're now officially in the future.

So many articles, interviews and playlists popping up about my favorite movie(s) Back to the Future and the predictions made for what is now present day. USA Today is even issuing a novelty copy of it's news paper (but not til tomorrow since, ya know, it was the next day's news that Doc had). I got up and ready early this morning to see the core cast interviewed on the Today Show complete with DeLorean. (I promise I'll get back to normal tomorrow, guys.)

Tonight to celebrate, I think I'll stop by Emporium Arcade Bar where they're unveiling the new Twin Pines Mall beer collaboration. Obviously it's a "heavy" IPA with spruce tips... They'll be showing the movies and the Cubs NLCS game, which is a wholenother story.