Lions and lambs oh my

What’s the saying, in like a lion and out like a lamb?  That’s what they say about March, right? Not so much lamb-like around here on the last day of March.  It was chilly today, and just a couple days ago, no surprise really- more snow!  I’m really hoping for some lamb-like weeks on the horizon.  It’s spring and yet, it doesn’t really feel very much like spring at all.  I freaking can’t wait to have a solid streak of good weather.  It doesn’t have to be perfect, just a day in the 50’s or 60’s will do.  That weather right there to me is perfect running weather, and I can’t wait to get back outside on the roads again more consistently for long (heck, I’ll even take short) runs.

March kind of flew by for me here, what about you?  I think it’s because I was hit with a bit of the case of the Januaries that I felt like I really welcomed the past two months fully with open arms.  And they seemed to fly by!  We had a lot going on, so that’s part of it, but in general, time just didn’t seem to drag as much as it did in January.

Like I did a couple of months back, here’s what I’ve been up to lately.  I like to reflect back on a month- see what’s been happening, what went well, areas that seemed like a win, and places I struggled.

Here’s what’s up currently:

Reading:  Three books currently.  The Star Spangled Buddhist: Zen, Tibetan, and Soka Gakkai Buddhism and the Quest for Enlightenment in America by Jeff Ourvan, Paris Letters (thanks to a handful of you for this recommendation!) by Janice Macleod, and The Good Luck of Right Now by Matthew Quick (who also wrote Silver Linings Playbook).

Loving:  That the days are getting longer.  That there’s more sunlight. These new, all natural face products.  Andalou is a line of all natural products and they’re really easy on the skin- great for clarifying, rejuvenating, and brightening!

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Thinking:  About plans for summer.  Weekends away with friends.  Long runs.  Cookouts.  Patios and beers on patios with friends.

Frustrated:  The things that frustrate me right now are just little things, and instead of focusing on them, I’m choosing to just let them go…

Feeling:  Sleepy, honestly, currently.  But also happy, and content, and thankful.

Anticipating:  Getting a puppy!  We’re looking into either rescuing one or going the breeder route.  We’d love to give a good home to a puppy that needs our help, but that’s the other thing, we know we want a young dog, so we’re looking for the right fit.

Watching:  We’ve kind of gotten into that new show with Ryan Phillippe, Secrets and Lies. Anyone else?

Also, hi Ryan:

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Sad:  Hmm.  I’m sad right now about a situation one of my close family members is going through.  Life is tough, and hard, and shitty sometimes, and I just feel bad for what this person is going through and hope that they will come out on the other side happier, healthier, and in a better place.

Working:  I actually do have a bit of a new role at work as of the last couple of weeks.  That’s been going well and has been a bit busier.  See also, feeling sleepy.

Grateful:  Always for my health, and the health of my loved ones.  Also grateful for random early morning coffee dates with girlfriends, spur of the moment plans with friends, the ability to be spontaneous right now, discovering new recipes, cooking for others, that my back which had been injured is feeling a lot better, and for the new hazelnut cinnamon coffee I bought the other day- YUM.

Listening:  Still to books on CD on my commute to work, and to Pandora’s Hipster Cocktail Party pretty much anytime my husband and I are hanging out, cooking, cleaning, or throwing our own version of a hipster cocktail party.

Wishing:  For some good weather to come!  For some sunny days.  To be able to spend an afternoon with the windows down at home and to take a drive with the sunroof open again soon.

How about you?  Join in and share some of the things you’re anticipating, loving, reading, or watching lately. Also, what’s March like for you right now?  The lion or the lamb?

Treat Yourself Tuesday!

One of my favorite bloggers lately linked up with another new-to-me blogger, Becky, for a fun idea that I can totally get behind: Treat Yourself Tuesday.

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The idea is to be kinder to ourselves each day, and take time out of our busy lives to do something nice for ourselves.

We’re all about balance around here, and one of the things that helps us feel balanced on our insides is doing nice things for ourselves.  Doing nice things for other people is really awesome too, but today is all about the self love, and I think self care is so important, because if we can’t nurture ourselves, how can we be fully present and give our best to others?

A couple of ways I treated myself today included…

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A hazelnut iced coffee from Bruegger’s.  I LOVE Bruegger’s coffee- especially because the beans are flavored, rather than adding in artificial sweeteners that I generally dislike.

Another treat included a really good workout this evening.  And soon I plan to treat myself to some down time on the couch with my husband catching up on some DVR’d shows, and a little reading.

How about you?  How did you treat yourself this Tuesday?

“It is good to have an end to journey toward; but it is the journey that matters, in the end.”

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“Sometimes when I was starting a new story and I could not get it going, I would sit in front of the fire and squeeze the peel of the little oranges into the edge of the flame and watch the sputter of blue that they made. I would stand and look out over the roofs of Paris and think, “Do not worry. You have always written before and you will write now. All you have to do is write one true sentence. Write the truest sentence that you know.” So finally I would write one true sentence, and then go on from there. It was easy then because there was always one true sentence that I knew or had seen or had heard someone say. If I started to write elaborately, or like someone introducing or presenting something, I found that I could cut that scrollwork or ornament out and throw it away and start with the first true simple declarative sentence I had written.”- Ernest Hemingway

Write one true sentence.

Paris is always a good idea.

…Or so I’ve heard.

Lately, while I have been away from this blog of mine and struggling with a little bit of writer’s block, I have been spending my time devouring everything to do with Paris.

My fascination with Paris started several years ago.  Paris, more than just a geographical location and the capital of France, always seems greater than that, doesn’t it?  Paris is seductive, and whimsical.  Paris, a destination I’ve envisioned in day dreams while spending an afternoon in a coffee shop, is where I’ve wondered, hoped, wished, that one day, I may find the perfect time and circumstance to travel to.

This coming May is that time, and I am so over the moon excited.

There’s the kind of excitement where you just can’t contain yourself, right?  You tell anyone that will listen that you’re so excited! about this thing.  You talk to your best friend about it, you call your mom, you tell the random person in line at CVS about your excitement; you are so excited about this thing that this thing is all you are talking about all of the time to all of the people!

And then there’s another type of excitement, or at least this is my version and experience currently.  I’m truly ecstatic about this one week adventure that I’m taking at the end of May with my Aunt this coming spring, but I’m keeping it all bottled up.  The excitement is there (it’s so very there!), it’s inside me and I’m so thrilled and I’m thinking and dreaming and reading and pinning my evening’s away, but I’ve been keeping it to myself.  I’m almost so excited, that I’m nervous if I let the cap off of my bottled up excitement, I’ll never be able to contain myself!

Have you ever experienced this version of excitement?

So.  I’m going to Paris.  Oh my goodness!  The Universe has given me this amazing opportunity to spend a week away in this wonderful destination that has been but a mere passing thought of “what if?” for years.  And I’ve been drowning myself in all things Paris ever since we made our reservations.

The Paris Wife was a wonderful novel which I got totally sucked into.  From there, I’ve formed a somewhat alarming obsession with Ernest Hemingway, whose literary works I can’t seem to get enough of.  I recently read A Moveable Feast which I enjoyed quite a bit, and from there I spend my evenings googling the life of Ernest Hemingway, his “spots” in Paris, where he ate and drank and spent his time writing.

Then, of course there’s the first Sex and the City movie from a while back, which I’ve always been in love with, as evidenced by the summer several years back when I became enthralled with French rap music.

There’s Julia child who I’ve always been captured by, her book My Life in France, in a box waiting to be unpacked sitting on my bookshelf.

I have a long list of books and movies that I’m dying to binge on.  I want to soak up Paris even before I go to Paris!

I’m so, so excited.  My version of excited.

Paris is always a good idea.  That’s one of the truest sentences I’ve heard lately.  Thank you, Mr. Hemingway.

Tell me, have you traveled to Paris, or another part of France?  Do you have any movie, book, or travel suggestions to help feed my bottled up excitement?