Archives for posts with tag: afternoon page

I’ve actually had fun attempting self-portraits in the past, and I still enjoy trying to draw myself from time to time. 

The urge most recently came about a few months ago when I decided to do a quick sketch from a photo to use instead of a photo of myself as my Avitar for a class I was taking. I liked how it turned out. 

This is a recent attempt that I decided to sketch because of two new things: my perm and new glasses. 

The glasses are inevitable. It was time, but the cost always hurts.

I’ve been wanting so much to come to the page, so I’m writing myself through it. I need to get back to my writing practice. Maybe I feel freer today because a class has ended, because the warm sunshine on my face as I walk to lunch energizes me, and because there is an end in sight to the busy season. 

It’s been at least 10 years since I last got a perm and I swore that I would not get another. I needed a change, a lift to my step. I plunged forward. The hair stylist, also owner of the salon, did a great job. She had done enough perms over the years, that I knew I was in good hands. 

Self-portraits have a tendency to reveal something we may have not noticed about ourselves in that moment that a regular photograph may not catch. Adding the color by mood and feeling adds another element. I love the process. 

The first time that I visited Las Vegas I was somewhere in my twenties. It was with a good friend, whose mom was nice enough to pay for all expenses. It was a family affair. The three of us shared a room at the Mirage. I remembered that hotel for it’s tropical feel; at least there was a bit of nature in this very built up, over-the-top destination.

My memory is fuzzy of how I actually felt, what my feelings were in response to all of the “noise” but my sense is that, at times, it was overwhelming. As a person who appreciates her solitude, it was the sort of place that went against my natural disposition. For years I convinced myself that Las Vegas was not for me and that I wouldn’t visit again.

I believe that I did end up there a second time with the same family in the same hotel and that this time, the flashy city did began to grow on me.

Fast-forward roughly twenty years and its one of the destinations that hubby and I would venture to for a short getaway.  He is an extrovert through and through and I think because of him I try to find places that he’ll be able to enjoy and that I’ll be able to explore and revisit. Because of him, the layers of my introvertedness are beginning to peel away to reveal more tolerance and more enjoyment of my extroverted side.

I still enjoy my quiet time, but I’m able to feed off of noise a lot better and am able to find the quiet within the chaos.

We’ll be visiting the Las Vegas Strip again soon to take in the glitz. I love walking through the gorgeous hotels, admiring the architecture, people watching, catching a few shows, and being right in the middle of all of the action.

One of my favorite parts is planning the trip, researching the different restaurants, and trying to get a feel ahead of time for potential places to eat and things to do.

I know that there’s more to Las Vegas than the Strip, but I have grown a great fondness for this piece of Las Vegas set against its beautiful desert landscape.

 

When I first learned of this book a few years ago, I never would have expected what I found within its pages. I appreciate snails, but I never imagined that I would want to keep reading of the companionship that one humble snail would offer to its newfound keeper and continue learning more. The writing is beautiful in an understated way. The descriptions of the author’s country home and nature transport, and the details allow the reader into this intimate space.

I never feel Elisabeth Tova Bailey feels sorry for herself in a way that takes away from her story or journey. I feel a kinship with her and her snail who becomes the shining star in this memoir because of her strange, debilitating illness, that comes upon her suddenly when she’s on her way from her travels to home.

I love that each chapter is headed by a haiku or quote that ties in nicely to each chapter. It’s true, this small book does indeed feel like a “delicate meditation on the meaning of life.”

A gentle and beautiful read that I’m happy to have stumbled upon.

From time to time, I search the internet for writing prompts to help light a spark. I was browsing Amazon and came across this one. I read the few reviews and decided that for $2.99, why not. It provides three writing prompts for each day for the whole year. There’s a Five-minute prompt that consists of one word, a Midday prompt, and a dinner prompt. You can also view the prompts by genre if you have an idea of the direction you want to go. I’ve done the prompts for the first day and have peeked around at the other prompts.

I like how the Kindle book is laid out. Simple and clean. Just reading the prompts gets the juices going. I hope to continue on and get back to a daily writing schedule just to keep the sparks from completely burning out.

I haven’t decided if I’m going to respond to the prompts in a paper journal or a Word document or some other application. I love paper, but sometimes, it’s easier to keep organized using technology. Evernote is another option that I considered.

Saturday was a good day. Each day actually hasn’t something good to appreciate, but Saturday was great because I got out of the house early before anybody was awake, even the stores weren’t quite ready for me. I started with a hot cocoa from Starbucks, then ventured over to the .99 cents store that was open. I went down each isle in search for something that I might need, being careful not to buy just because it was a bargain. I found a blank notebook. I don’t know that I really needed it; I saw it as a new beginning, a fresh start. I also bought one pack of miniature Hersey bars. I couldn’t resist.

I wanted to go to the gym. My excuse for not going was that I forgot my fanny pack, which is essential for taking only what I need. I didn’t want to go back home just for that. Instead I parked the car near the bookstore, walked over to the Walgreens, which was a couple of blocks away–a little bit of exercise, albeit not as much as if I went to the gym.

Finally, I ended the morning searching through the stacks of bargain books outside the bookstore. I haven’t actually done this for a while and it felt really good, taking my time, being by myself, not rushed and just enjoying some “me time.” I did find a handful of books and have started two, one is a collection of essays celebrating Harper Lee’s To Kill a Mockingbird. I need to read her much loved book. I have vague memories from my school days, but don’t feel that I’ve actually read it, so it’s on my TBR list, and I may get to it sooner than planned. I also picked up The Borrower, which has really piqued my interest. It’s quirky so far and I like quirky. Also, a Paul Auster book: Timbuktu.

When I exited the bookstore, the day settled in on my spirit. The blue skies had a softeness to them, the three little birds that I saw playing underneath a car, swept past me and I could hear the flutter of their wings. I think that was the second highlight of my morning. It practically gave me goose bumps.

I took my bag of books and my happy state of mind back home with me, ready to fold into the rest of the day.

The power is out at work, which brought me to the library on a block where, luckily, there still is power. You realize how dependent you are on the juice that makes technology possible. I can’t go in the file room to file the stack of papers I have because there’s no light. The phones are out because they’re digital. No computers. No coffee, refrigerator, microwave. None of us brought our own laptops because we didn’t plan for the outage.

I actually came to the library to work on my school work, which was fine with my boss.

The computers here are very slow. As I type this, the words intermittently lag behind my tapping fingers. It’s more of a challenge to work on school work because of the transmission delays.

Today when I wrote in my daily calendar that I’ve been wanting to visit and post on my journal blog and that I’ve come close, but not yet, perhaps I planted an additional seed that somehow brought me to the page. It’s funny how things work out sometimes.

  
Trying to view the glass with all its possibilities and all that there is to be grateful for, yet there is a smal bug that needles, draining energy. A path lies strewn with debris, question marks, worries, doubt. A tattoo on the inside wrist of the bank teller said, “this too shall pass.” I’ve taken a book down, one that I haven’t visited in a very long time, one that I didn’t finish, but find myself drawn to because I’m trying to declutter: Clear Your Clutter with Feng Shui by Karen Kingston. 

A sunset, birds twittering, the cold air, gardeners planting flowers along the street flower pots, a smiling child…these things make me stop and breathe. Seeing a person without a home, sitting in the cold make me both sad and appreciative for what I have. The news on the television is hard to watch, so many unbelievable, negative acts. 

As I continue clearing out the clutter, I hope that my energy level increases and that I am releasing what needs to go, making room for-

For whatever the Univerese has in store. 

I feel like I’ve taken a long hibernation for which I cannot seem to wake up from. Migraines are a nuisance and when I have good days, I often find I want to sleep. I think it’s the things I’ve amassed. It’s time to let go of what has not been used, time to focus on the few important things. 

In light of my moods, I’m still managing to laugh and stay positive. Classes went well. They are over for now. 

I emptied a large hall closet before work one morning, just to force myself to address it that evening. It covered the whole bed. How did all this stuff fit in there? And do I need it all? Four digital cameras! Really, I must let go. A cute coconut purse, a novelty I couldn’t resist, but have never used. The TV show Hoarders plays in the background; my mother was a hoarder. I have the tendencies in my bones, but it’s nothing like my mom or the folks on those shoes. After watching one episode with a mother and son, I could no longer watch. It was too painful to see the sickness, the deterioration. They had a happy ending. It was exhausting to watch. 

I unloaded another three boxes of books. They’ll find new people to make happy. I will let others go. Little by little. Sometimes it’s hard, but very necessary. Certain books I take photos of so I won’t forget, so I can look them up again if I ever want to get in touch. I can rely on library books, which I love doing anyway. 

“It’s all good.”

I release myself to the Universe.