Day 30–nablopomo

It’s the last day of nablopomo and I’ve been absent since 11/17.

I am totally fine with that.

Why? Because blogging is what you make of it. For me it means I’m likely just living in the moments and not thinking about writing. Or more likely–thinking about the writing and not posting as is typically the case with me. Either way, I’m calling it a success because I’ve done more posts this month than I have all year, so that’s saying something. A win, for sure.

Here’s what I’ve been up to:

  1. I’ve joined a gym. I’m digging it. It’s so hard, but makes me feel so good. Especially after I get over each session’s soreness, which means it’s time to get back in there again. I’m sore around muscles in my ribs that I didn’t even know existed. Maybe they didn’t which is why they are sore. It has to be good to working these parts of my body. It feels good anyway. I also took a velo (spin) class which was a huge physical and mental hurdle. I tore the muscles around my left sacroiliac joint 10 years ago (last) January doing spinning. It took a long time to diagnose and an even longer time to “recover” with various treatments (spinal injections and physical therapies). I still have chronic issues running the gamut from nothing to soreness, to physical pain, to nerve pain running the full length of my left leg; restless legs at night drive me nuts. The best thing for it (and me) is continual movement. Getting back on the bike is huge for me. I love the mental release it gives me, although now I have to constantly focus on form, not unlike when I’m running. Plus I sweat my ass off because it’s a hard aerobic workout.
  2. Pies baked and consumed: 3 (plus one apple tart)
  3. Bowls of tofu nabe made and consumed: I’ve lost count, but likely somewhere around 8.
  4. I took down the Halloween decorations, but left up the orange lights. That’s fall, right? My neighbors with the christmas lights up may beg to differ. I differ with how they maintain their yard (they don’t) so I’m gonna call it even.
  5. I taught someone how to sew improvisational quilt blocks. I talked to my best friend from high school about how to do the sashing on her first quilt. These things warm my heart.
  6. I signed up for an individual membership for the Modern Quilt Guild. When asked if I had any “special talents” to share with guild members I checked “yes” at first, then changed it to “no.” This broke my heart a little.
  7. I’ve fallen down the rabbit hole of korean skin care. I regret nothing.
  8. I started making quilt blocks for a new christmas quilt. Like I need that. humpf.
  9. It was 65-70 degrees for the high up until about 4 days ago. It was lovely and we’ve hiked and hiked. It’s now back to 50’s for the high. Still can’t complain though. We were spoiled this fall.
  10. Prince Harry got engaged! Contemplating taking off work for the wedding if it will be televised. I am that person. Also does anyone have cable and want to host?
  11. I may have a name for my new business? I’ve said that before. These things are tough. More later.
  12. Being a perfectionist is hard. See #11.
  13. I got my hair cut today. I love haircut day.
  14. How many times is too many times to watch the Great British Baking Show on Netflix? #askingforafriend
  15. Same for Terrace House. And Terrace House Aloha State.
  16. I just can’t take the number of cases of sexual harassment/misconduct/abuse reported in the news. Too many to hyperlink. Our current reality as a nation is disturbing on so many levels.
  17. Number of rounds of Settlers of Catan played: 4 (or 5).
  18. I’ve started thinking about Christmas. And my love of twinkle lights. And how to get more in my life. Also, peppermint hand soap.
  19. I bought new boots over the internet (2 pair!) post thanksgiving. Seems so indulgent. But considering my other pair is nearly 11 years old. What an excruciating decision-making process. I’ll try them on this weekend. Fingers crossed.
  20. We might be catching a cold.

Happy Nablopomo ya’ll. Thanks for following. xoxo E

gym pep talk


I was talking to a friend the other day and mentioned that I was starting to question myself as a quilter. I haven’t quilted with any seriousness in ages. Sure I little around chipping away on an overdue wedding quilt and stitching the occasional appliqué block. I feel disconnected, in more ways than one. She encouraged me to reach out to make connections. Maybe the real solution is to reconnect with those I have already made. You are a part of that. 

I wonder what would happen if I wrote more, even if it was essentially about nothing? An experiment then. Let’s begin.

It was a fine day. A quiet one at work, the Friday at state government kind of quiet. I was actually making some progress that I can also apply to my personal life–teaching myself Adobe InDesign while creating an org. chart for our division. Life skills of the graphic design sort.

I left at close to my regular hour as I was scheduled for a week overdue haircut. This is key as with short hair you have to keep it shaped and the neckline tight. I get it cut every five weeks. I arrived and my stylist was washing someone else. As it turns out I was an hour late. I had rescheduled the previous week because I could’t make my regular appointment due to a public meeting conflict. I must have entered the wrong time in my phone when I updated the appointment. This is wholly my fault, but it immediately turned my mood foul. She is booked until November. Fortunately I book two appointments out and have one scheduled towards the end of October. But damn, if I can’t get in before then things are going to be rough. Fingers crossed a cancellation opens and it matches with my availability.

So. Here I sit. Writing it out.

I made an emergency comfort treat which should be cold enough to eat in a couple of hours. I also bought this pattern which I’ve seen pop up on the interwebs lately and which makes my 1980s heart smile and aligns with my love of mixtapes.

How do you get out of a funk, quilting or otherwise?

Choose your words wisely.

courthouse steps

I started today with the thought that I would post something for Wordless Wednesday. As the day wore on and I have seen the multitude of pictures of people arriving in Austin, Texas for QuiltCon, I thought about writing how I feel like the only person not going. Now, alas, here I sit writing about something entirely different.

So much of what we see and read on the Internet, or blogs in particular, is sanitized, I think. I don’t mean the people who “clean up” before they photograph something. I mean that it can be difficult to find blogs that write about hard things, honest things. Maybe because those things are hard to write about. Many blogs would have us believe that the world is all rainbows and unicorns, when we know those things are really rare. Besides, those close to me know I am not a huge fan of rainbows, at least of the quilted variety. Although I do love a good real rainbow.

I (mostly) completed the January prompt for my One Little Word FORWARD this weekend and I wrote three things down which sort of hit me in the face like a 2×4 tonight. It is these kinds of ah-ha moments that make me realize that despite my unsure-ness (is that even a word) with my word choice for this year, I am right where I need to be. Settling into it, and that feels really awesome.

So what did I commit to?

MORE: blogging—LESS: thoughts left in my head. (YOU ARE HERE)

MORE: saying what I need—LESS: saying yes so as to not disappoint.

And, as part of the answer to “What do I fear most in 2015?” I wrote—“I fear the fallout that comes with saying hard things.”

And so I sit here (writing—already making progress) contemplating the question, as I often do—Who reads what I write in this space? Does it matter what I write? Who reads any space? Why do we filter? What are we afraid of? Why do we live in a society where we tiptoe around each other, trying not to upset people? Or is that just me? It can’t be just me because I know others who do it too (the tiptoeing, not necessarily the contemplating).

I had a brief conversation with someone today and the reality of the words that were said stung (or rather, that were not even spoken but that I figured out).

They were upsetting. And totally true.

I got mad. And the only person I really have to be mad at is myself.

I am reminded, as I frequently am, that if you want to see a change you have to make a change.


Fortunately, tomorrow, we all get a second chance.

Change your socks

It was a rule I had learned my first year working in the Forest Service—when exhausted and feeling sorry for yourself, at least change your socks.

–Norman Maclean, “Logging and Pimping and ‘Your Pal, Jim’”

I started a new job in March and to say it has been a challenge is a gross understatement. I have to keep reminding myself this 1) was something not needed, rather it was pursued–all in the name of growth, and 2) to keep at it.

I worked on Easter Sunday. Partly my own fault, but partly because the work load is heavy, I am still slow, still pursuing perfection (always with the perfection), and paralyzed by my own self in terms of how I will be judged. I came home feeling a bit whipped (although I met my deadline), as I do most days.

But yesterday–yesterday–I changed my socks. Perhaps best known for his story A River Runs Through It, Norman Maclean wrote other, less memorable stories. Less memorable, I suspect, because they didn’t star Brad Pitt and a host of other talented actors. But the meaning and the lessons in those other stories are full of life lessons as well.

Yesterday I went to work and switched some furniture around (this small act changed my whole perspective), which lead to dealing with some papers (rule #1 of feng shui–eliminate clutter), and drinking more water, and leaving work on time. Which meant, I got home early enough to EXERCISE (p90xcardio thankyouverymuch). Eating a good dinner and getting to bed early enough to read.

And I started it over again today.

Moral of the story. Change your socks.