Wednesday, January 2, 2019

Not resolutions.

I'm not making new year's resolutions, haven't in a few years, hopefully won't ever again. Because this is how I, personally, feel about them (as illustrated by @unspirational on instagram):

No, but *this* year is different! 

Don't forget the grain of salt and my dark humour! 

I do have a few changes I want to make, however, that kind of look like they're new years resolutions. That's because being able to implement them or start working on them depends on a few "adult things" that happen to coincide more or less with that time each year where we wish we had white-out on hand any time we have to date anything. Or maybe we could petition for it to be socially acceptable to write the year as "201?" during at least January..?

But there's also stuff I've already started putting into action and I'm going to include that in my little list here to show how un-resolution-y all of this really is.

In my list, I'll add [upc] for "upcoming" and [prg] for "in progress" at the end of every item so you can see what I'm already doing and what I'm planning on doing as soon as I can get on it.

The reason I want to post this list at all is for accountability on one hand and motivation on the other. Plus, I get to use the whole bladiblah about life changes being a journey and thus putting me "ontheway" again and we all know how I love overusing metaphors that don't properly work.

Here's my list-thing:

– Get my brows and lashes done professionally every 2-3 months. [upc]

– No sugar. I stopped eating and drinking (obvious) sugar on February 14th, 2018. Initially, I said I'd give up sugar for Lent, out of curiosity, to see if I could do it. Then I continued, out of curiosity, to see how long I could do it for. I'm still doing it and it'll be a year in a month and a half. I actually enjoy it, to my surprise and everybody else's (kind of insulting) disbelief. It's very important to note that this is NOT! about weight loss. I might elaborate more in a separate post, but this is it for now. [prg]

– Start clicker training with the bauz - the vet said it would be a great way for us to play and both have fun together and that, for him, it's something that allows him to feel accomplished and proud of himself. Plus, he'll get to see how easily he can make me follow commands with the simple click of a little button. [upc]

– Bake more. If I can make the time, I want to make a thing a week. I'm calling it baking, but it's more than that: I want to make cakes, pies, tartes, cookies, elaborate plated desserts, frozen treats, chocolates, breads, and much more. I want to expand my repertoire and try out and learn all of the gorgeous things I see on instagram and in my five million recipe magazines. I enjoy baking so much and I usually find people to eat everything, so I want to really go for it, finally. Otherwise, what am I collecting recipes and stocking my kitchen up for? I have so much in terms of tools and ingredients and ideas, now is the time to create. [upc]

– Take better care of my teeth. The poor things are horrible. I can't currently afford braces, but I did get a new morning/evening combo of tooth paste with a third kind for during the day, I have floss sticks and mini brushes at home, at work, and in my bag, and I've started drinking coffee, black tea, and coloured drinks (Coke zero, it's my vice...) with a straw to prevent staining. [prg]

– Reduce single-use plastics. But Isabella, the straws?! Yeah, nothing to worry about there. I got myself some metal and glass straws for cold and hot drinks, respectively. I'm also getting a lot better about carrying fabric shopping bags around in case I hop into the store spontaneously and I made myself a veggie net - now the only thing I use plastic veggie bags for is cleaning the bauzi's litterbox. [prg]

– Get strong. I need to get myself into shape. I don't mean pants sizes, but physical strength. I want to play with my niece and nephew and not be the first one out of breath. I want to not be bright red in the face after dancing to just one song. I want to be able to beat egg whites to stiff peaks by hand again - yep, I used to be able to do that. [upc]

– Re- and upcycle everything I can't cut out. I'm separating trash and carrying plastic, glass, metal, and paper to the recycling bins across the street re-lig-ious-ly. I'm making jewellery and other stuff from plastic bottles (mineral water, not giving that up), plastic cards, and nespresso pods (I drank nespresso at work for a few months, because the other coffee available was disgusting and no coffee is not an option). [prg]

– Fix my nutrition. No sugar is fine, but I need to learn good habits and train myself about what, how much, and when I eat. You eat nothing all day except for a handful of almonds, three slices of bread, and six coffees? You're not allowed to complain about "not feeling so great". I plan on getting professional help in this department. [upc]

– Travel more. Because, obviously. [upc]

– Learn to knit. Crocheting is not enough. [prg]

– Craft more. [upc]

There are other things I'm doing, other things I'm working on. I'm not listing everything. Partially, because it's private, like my mental health, and partially, because it's late and I'm tired and can't remember everything, like - duh I can't give an example, I just said I can't remember everything...

If any of this inspires you to do the same, let me know and we can do something together or share ideas and motivation.

If any of this opens up any questions for you, let me know and I'll try to elaborate, explain more, or give some example of an experience or planned activity.

If any of this strikes you as stupid, weak, or unnecessary, keep it to yourself. Everybody's journey is different and what works for me doesn't have to be what works for you.

They may not be resolutions, but due to the timing I'll end the post on this note:

Bring it on, 2019!

Monday, December 31, 2018

Laid-back LUXury.

There's a pun in the title, this post must be great!

I'm condensing my time in Luxembourg City into one blog post, because there's really not that much to tell. Not that the place is boring, it's really not. There's a lot going on in terms of history and culture, especially with regards to politics and language! But that's not the focus of my writing this nor was it the focus of my visit.

My visit had, essentially, two objectives:

The first, getting myself back out there and visiting a new place, breaking the cycle of fear and stagnation, and jumping back into the geographically adventurous part of my life. Even if it wasn't a jump in the deep end — traveling within western Europe and staying in a hotel is pretty shallow, as far as ends go — at least it was something. My 50th something, on top of that.

The second, to see Nai. He put it best in his instagram post of our two coffee cups (OMG, like, so millennial, like, I can't even) with #epicfriendship.

The weather was also happy to see Nai and turned off the fog!

We ended up not doing anything crazy, instead just taking it easy and walking all over the place, with breaks for coffee, lunch, coffee, chestnuts, and coffee. All super laid-back, relaxed, and without any set itinerary (or map, really) to follow.

Here, then, are some of my impressions I want to share with you of Luxembourg City:

Would I recommend visiting Luxembourg? Yes. Would I recommend visiting if in the winter? No. Would I recommend visiting it for this long instead of just two days or so? Only if you're going to also explore outside the capital and see more of the castles and nature the place has to offer.

I'm glad I went.

And now, as I am literally ontheway into 2019, on a bus somewhere in Germany, let me tell you the same thing that one sign told me back in Luxembourg:

Guten Rutsch!
Feliz año nuevo!
Happy new year 2019!

G'night, see you on the other side.

Best seat in/on the house/bus.

It's tiiime tooo say goodbyyyeee to Luxembourg; I'm already on the bus that'll take me back home to my family, friends, and miezibauz. I can't wait to hug that little guy and hear his cute little voice complain about my presence two minutes after my return from a five-day-trip.

As predicted, the journey home will be a lot better than the journey to Luxembourg, which wasn't really bad at all, anyway.

Now though, I'm on a completely different level!

Not literally, I'm still on the top floor of the bus as I reserved the same seat for both trips. But comfort-wise this is a whole other league. I believe I currently have the absolutely best seat in the house! (on the bus)

I have all of the space, all of the power, and all of the WiFi!

Wish me luck for it to stay this way all the way to Wien.

In the meantime, I shall write.