Sometimes it’s the little things… like a hockey stick

Last night I attended a charity event to support a good friend of mine.  It was the typical “suggested donation” at the door type of thing, which gave you two drink and a raffle ticket.  I happily paid the donation, saw my friend, drank my two drinks and left to have dinner with another couple at a nearby restaurant.

It was then I learned I had won a signed hockey stick in the raffle.  Do I follow hockey?  Not really.  Had I heard of the player that signed it?  Nope.  But I won!!  A hockey stick!!  How cool is that?  I was grinning and giggling like a dork all the way home in the cab clutching my hockey stick.

I figure if nothing else, it is going to be great at getting cobwebs out of ceiling corners.

The Fine Art of Nesting

There are few things I enjoy more in life than a good snow storm.  I love snow, which since I live in Chicago is a good thing.  But this year, we really haven’t had much.  Today is our first official dumping and I couldn’t be happier about it.

I do a lot of things.  Some of these things I am quite good at.  But perhaps the thing I am best at, and enjoy the most, is the fine art of nesting.  Hunkering down.  Settling in.  Battening down the hatches and riding out the storm. 

Nothing makes me happier than the anticipation of a good storm and taking the few days before it to make sure we’ve got all the provisions.  This means more than just ensuring you’ve got plenty of food and wine.  You’ve got to ensure the following:  All important errands are run? — check.  Fridge (both food and wine varieties) fully stocked? — check.  House cleaned and orderly? — check.  All throw blankets, cat beds, fuzzy socks, and favorite sweaters at the ready? — check.  Logs ready for the fireplace? — check.  DVR loaded with lots of possibilities? — check.

World’s Dorkiest Cat settled in to ride out the storm with you in full-pike position? — check!

Settle in and snuggle up… this is going to be fun!

And suddenly… there was light!

Call it an “Aha Moment”,  call it finally getting your stuff together, call it a New Years’ Resolution that stuck, call it growing up, but whatever you want to call it… I’m hoping this time, it sticks for good.

Now, you’ll have to hang with me here for a while on this post.  I’m not even entirely sure what it is I’m writing about as I’m writing it.  I know that I’ve been trying to make these posts about quick, blink-or-you’ll-miss-them moments of joy, but sometimes it really is the big picture that makes all the difference.

Things are starting to suddenly make sense to me.  What things, you ask?  All sorts of things…. family, diet, exercise…. etc… etc… etc…  It’s as if in a way, I have finally made peace with the world.  That’s great I know, but the thing is, I don’t think I ever realized I wasn’t at peace with the world. Then again, maybe I’ve just grown up!

First things first:  Like about a gazillion other people, I made the typical New Year’s resolution to lose weight and get in better shape.  Yadda, yadda, yadda… I know.  I make these promises every year.  Now, I am not drastically overweight or out of shape.  But at any given moment in my life, I find I am trying to lose anywhere from 5 – 15 pounds.  I never really get there.  I make progress. I try… then I get bored and I stop.  Not this time.  I am three weeks into it and have lost half of my goal weight.  And unlike all the other times, this time I fully expect and know without a doubt that I will make said goal weight by mid-March (my target date).

So what’s different this time?  A new diet? No, I never really believe in “diets” per se.  Eating nothing but celery or grapefruit or special teas or potions never appealed to me.  I love food and cooking way too much.  I have always found it helpful to use an online diet foodlog such as FitDay which I am also doing again this time.  I am a firm believer that for me, a calorie is a calorie is a calorie.  Where I get them doesn’t matter as long as I don’t get too many of them per day.  So I’m using FitDay and eating real food like I always did.  But I think my “Aha Moment” is simply realizing that food never runs out … there will always be another opportunity to eat good stuff!  I don’t need to panic and eat everything in sight if we go out to a restaurant or have friends over for dinner.  Food will always be there.  I can choose how much of it to eat!  Revolutionary, I know!  Who would have thunk it?

I also have always been a regular exerciser.  The difference this time is my mindset going into it.  This time my daily workouts are not something I have  to do.  They are something I want to do!  It was easier for me to determine where this change in thinking came from.  Recently in my family I have seen what lack or exercise or mobility can do… let’s just say I’ve seen the future and I chose to change it.

And finally the big picture… making peace with the world.  You know what?  Most of the things we stress about and fret about and spend valuable parcels of time deliberating about are not the important things.  I’ve decided this year,  I am simply going to live and let live.  My new motto?  “It is what it is, so deal”.   It’s amazing when you let things go — such as how you are viewed by others, what your perceived “role” is, or what you’ve always been told you should do.  Just let it go and do what feels right…and it will become right!  Or at least, that’s how I’m viewing things from here…in Grownup Land.