Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Shifting Gears As I Head Into May

Not a great pic but I got a trim yesterday
and we added a bit of fringe to my face.
This is what 52 looks like!
I just wrote about April and it occurs to me that I hardly need to rehash the month—my delightful birthday, the sadness, the sickness (Holly) so why don’t I just focus on my intentions for May?

I read Start Where You Are by Pema Chödrön and have notes and, assuming I can figure out how to do so, I’ll write out some of my thoughts.  I know, I just said I’d write about May and here I am writing about April.  Just think “Whitman” and forgive me my “multitudes.”  The monthly book for May is one that my mother highly recommended to me:  Gilead by Marilynne Robinson.  As always, if you want to join me, please do so.  It has a reading guide  so maybe I’ll even consider reading the guide and responding.   I updated the sidebar with the other books I’m currently reading.  I also need to choose some other reading material for my trip.

What trip?  Aha!  I’ll be going to visit my family for nine days in May.  I hope they notice I have lost some weight but you never know.  I have four more weeks to lose still more weight.  Which is why I need to think about what book(s) to bring with me for reading on the flight and during the quiet times when my mother and I are just curling up in her window seat with Lizzie.  

But before I head up north, I have plans.  For one thing, remember the Bullet Journal?  So far I haven’t gotten into the habit of using it but I think it’s a closer fit than anything else I’ve tried thus far.  I just need to remember to use it daily and I don’t think I fall into the cliché of creating a new habit in 21 days.  (There’s research that suggests it takes longer and I must be the poster child for the research.)  Today I’ll sit with my moleskine and start planning out my May. 

And I have plans!

Over on Ekaterina’s blog, there is a second (or other, if you know more than two) language challenge.  Read a book in a language that is not your “mother tongue.”  Only, I never learned a second language.  I studied a little French in middle school, a little Spanish in high school, and a little more French in college.  But not enough to navigate my way through a primer in either language.  So I asked if I could, instead of reading in another language, try to learn another language.  With her approval, I’ll be studying Italian.  I just need to get my Italian ducks in a row. 

BTW, if you do read in a second/third/fourth/etc. language (unlike yours truly), you should sign up for the challenge. It looks like fun.  And if you don't, maybe you can do what I'm doing and start studying a new language.  Or new to you, anyway.  (Last time I checked, Italian has been around for a while.)

And thanks to Betty Taylor, I’ve decided to pick up my calligraphy pen again.  I just need to scrounge around and pull together the materials.  Chisel point markers.  Dip pens.  And I think I have a fountain pen lying around here somewhere.  I’m going to do the “drills” of simple strokes and copying pangrams, focusing on relearning italic penmanship.  I’ll also play with my own handwriting, perhaps copying poems and such.  I think I can commit to practicing every day.  I’ll share pictures when I can and, when I’m out of town, well, you’ll have to use your imagination, I guess.  Or trust me to keep up the practice when I’m away from home.  I used to have a lovely hand and, while I may never have the level of skill I had when I was younger, who knows?  Maybe I can at least work my way to being legible again. 

Also, in a few days, Rob and I will be celebrating our fourth wedding anniversary.  And they said it wouldn’t last!  I have a couple of gifts for him but I think he sometimes snoops in my blog so I’ll not say another word about what I have for him until after he’s opened the goodies.

April wasn’t quite what I thought it would be.  May will probably come with its own surprises.  I’m trying to think of creative ways to have blog posts that will go live while I’m out of town.  Not sure what I’ll post which is why I’m “trying to thin of” rather than “thinking of” and I’m definitely open to suggestions.  Hmmmm . . . see?  I’m already opening myself up to surprises.  Surprise me!

12 comments:

  1. Sounds like a busy month. I'm sure you'll love having the time with your mom.

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    1. Betty, I kid you not when I say that the month just got busier before I could even shoo Rob out the door. I mean, we didn't even know he was going to be out overnight on this gig until after I'd gone to bed so I just found out this morning. In the meantime, there are 2 school events coming up for Bibi. And I completely forgot about Mother's Day! ARGH!

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  2. Hey, I hope I'll look as great at 52! A great haircut! :)
    I heartily welcome you to the challenge and wish you all the luck with Italian! It's beautiful and shouldn't be too difficult, so a great choice! I'm looking forward to see your progress! :))
    And congrats on your wedding anniversary! I wish you to get along with each other as greatly as you seem to do now for many years more! :)

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    1. Ekaterina, I have a variety of supplies and enough of a desire to make it happen. It's just a matter of my prioritizing, really. I'm thinking I'll practice some of the Italian I'll be learning to speak by writing out phrases and such. Merge two things into one.

      I love the cut. But I think the pixie will be an even easier style for me. We'll see. I won't be getting another cut until June. Maybe just a trim between then and now.

      And thank you. Rob is a lot of fun to be around and he "gets me" which helps. Yesterday morning, I was not in a good place and he let me say what I needed to say. It had nothing to do with him but I needed him to just listen and he's awfully good at that when he wants to be.

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  3. Satia, I enjoyed this post of random items. Your hairstyle looks gorgeous. I hope you will "practice" some calligraphy again as it is quite a lovely art.

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    1. Thank you, Suko. I pulled all the calligraphy stuff out of the bookcase and I just need to figure out where and how I am going to get started. I told Rob this morning that I'm literally going to fill one page a day with practice strokes. I also plan on writing out Italian phrases I am learning (or hope to learn, anyway). It should be an interesting month.

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  4. I started to learn French a while back, but I haven't done anything with it for a while. Maybe I will start that again. My son will be home soon with another year of French behind him. He could help by having a little bit of conversation with me.

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    1. Betty, practicing with your son is perfect. You'll help him and he'll help you. When my son was studying Japanese, I really wanted him to tutor me and his siblings so that we could all learn together. I knew he was tutoring his classmates so I knew he could do it but he didn't do it. So now I'm on my own studying Italian. Except Rob and I will be learning together, I think. We'll see how it goes.

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  5. Busy month! But how is your school going? I'm so far behind in my reading that I have missed those updates. But I have the summer off before returning to the PhD program in the fall so maybe, just maybe, I can get caught up on reading that I want to do rather than reading what I have to read.

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    1. My studies are officially over. I am fully certified. Unfortunately, a BS in Secondary English Education plus certification in Medical Billing & Coding has not resulted in my having a paying job. I'm currently interning, doing the work I trained to do without getting paid for it. I'm learning from someone who has been doing coding for years and, hopefully, gaining skills I'll need to get a job that will help me do something wild, like paying my bills.

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    2. Hopefully you will be able to find a steady paying job. But, on the bright side, it is good that you have finished up! Have you considered working in the school system and using that secondary English Education degree?

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    3. I didn't do a weekly update post but there are things happening at the office that may result in my either being moved to a paid position or asked not to come back anymore. I'll update when I know more.

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