Today Gabe is wearing a white t-shirt, blue jeans, and brown boots.
I bought new running shoes! And then I took them for a run.
After Gabe’s dad told me a year ago that I needed new running shoes, I finally decided that the foot and leg pain I’d been complaining about a year ago when he told me I needed new shoes was bad enough that maybe I actually would buy those new shoes.
I walked into the local running shoes store (yes, the, because there is only one) and asked, “My ankles are getting all wobbly when I run. What would you recommend?”
He told me his best seller, I tried it on, he showed me that it came in bright pink, and I walked out in under about 4 minutes.
Possibly one of the best transactions of my entire life.
In case it matters, he was un-ironically sporting a wonderful mustache. And we all know how I feel about a guy with an un-ironic mustache. So I guess he has my business for life now.
Because I love a mustache, and I absolutely don’t have the time or knowledge to buy a shoe online.
Earlier this week, I went over to Gabe’s parents’ house to celebrate his grandmother’s 94th birthday.
I brought over some work to do before dinner, but just as I was sitting down, the power went out. Which meant the internet went out. Which means no work.
And also meant a candlelit dinner, which was tres romantique for a 94th birthday party.
We ate enchiladas and delicious chocolate cake, while rain poured down outside. Since Gabe’s grandmother is French, we spoke French all through dinner, which meant I nodded along politely, reacted about a second too late to everything anyone said, and contributed a lot of “Oh!” and “Oui!” sounds to the conversation.
After hauling out several old candles to light the room, and after cutting off the lumpy, melted, knocking-this-candle-over-so-it-can’t-stand-up-straight wax off a couple of particularly old ones, Gabe got the brilliant idea to make a candle.
And so, because we had no electricity, we did.
It was beautiful, and difficult to photograph.
Also this week, Gabe finally completed the whole entire floor of our new apartment! Which he has been building for us, in the middle of the woods, and which we’ll be moving into together in like 2 weeks!
Here is Gabe midway through his work on the floor. (How about that stove, btw?? I can’t wait to crank it and make it so warm all the time forever in this new apartment.)
Other than these photos, nothing interesting has happened. I am still a Twitter robot and I spend my days either staring into the Internet or trying to chat people up at 94th birthday parties about WHAT IS EVEN GOING ON ON THE AMERICANS!
Today Gabe is wearing a grey fleece, a brown t-shirt, and blue jeans covered in joint compound.
This week I made a few impulse purchases, and for once in my life, I don’t feel guilty at all about them.
Last week, J. Crew had a sale where everything that was already on sale was another 40% off, and while I’m not usually a sucker for sales like this, I went a little bit wild last weekend shopping for weird silk shirts with tiny zebras on them and fancy bird sweaters. And by “a little bit wild”, I mean I literally looked at every single page of sale items on the J. Crew website. There were 36 pages. I looked at every single one.
Then, over the weekend, I started researching this site called Stitch Fix (ps. that’s a referral link – if you try out Stitch Fix, click that and I can get some $$) where you fill out a style profile and then they send you 5 pieces in the mail that they think will fit your style. Then you try everything on at home, keep and pay for what you like, and send everything else back for free.
Living in the fashion and beauty wasteland that is Humboldt County, I think I’ve started getting really into fashion and beauty in a reactionary way.
The more I can’t access these things, the more I want them. The more I look at blogs about what ladies are wearing. The more I find myself googling “what do you do with bronzer” and then placing large orders to get bronzer, plus “just a few other things” that I assume I’ll be needing sometime soon.
None of it is here in person. It all has to be delivered in.I mean, I don’t even know where I would go here to buy new jeans or some blush. Like, there is nowhere. So now I am getting really into seeking out and delivering it all in, to myself, as often as possible.
So I scheduled a Stitch Fix delivery for next week. And then I made a triple-digit order on Sephora yesterday, to get some soaps, and serums, and moisturizers, and several other items delivered in.
I am in consumer mode, and it is pretty fun.
I’m not normally a big spender; in fact, I think this is probably the end of my spending for a while now that I’ve gotten it out of my system this last week or so.
But a couple weeks ago I did some freelance work that paid shockingly well. It was a last minute offer, and I took it, and I was pleasantly surprised to learn that I made enough to bump my saving account across the goal line I’ve been working towards for months.
And after I crossed that line, I had a little left over. And I thought, “Why not?”
So, hippies and communists of Humboldt County, look out. If you see a woman in fancy shorts and a silk zebra shirt coming towards you wearing bronzer, don’t be afraid. I still respect your right to smoke pot on the sidewalk and to talk to me about your hemp clothing and what the government doesn’t want me to know. I’m just acting out.
Today Gabe is wearing a red raincoat, a grey fleece, blue jeans, and brown boots.
Did you know you can get a headache from a massage?
Yesterday afternoon I was feeling tense and headache-y all on my own, so I decided on a whim to cash in the massage gift certificate that my parents got me for my birthday earlier this week.
I called and got a last-minute appointment, and had a truly amazing massage. I was like, in the zone for the whole thing. It was so relaxing, and although I normally try to avoid ever speaking during a massage because it will take me out of the zone, I actually had a nice (albeit mumbled and brief) conversation with my masseuse about my weird body tension.
When I started doing yoga, the only adjustment I ever got was my teachers walking by a shoving my shoulders down away from my ears. Apparently, my shoulders are always hovering just millimeters below my ears, which is not where they belong.
And apparently, holding your shoulders up and forward is not very conducive to relaxed muscles or open chakras.
(I already knew this. I just didn’t know I personally was guilty of doing it basically 24 hours a day for my whole life.)
So while I was getting my massage yesterday, she was working on my head and upper neck and she asked, “Do you get a lot of headaches?”
And I said, “Kind of.”
And she said, “I can tell. You have SO much tension here. It’s like a brick.”
I’m not a doctor, but I know that in general your body is not supposed to have brick-like qualities.
So she worked on my scalp and my neck and I had the realization for the first time ever that those muscles *are* always tense, and that having someone rub them felt really, really good.
It was pretty incredible (though I don’t think those muscles ever even got fully relaxed, but that will probably take another 28 years to un-do) and after the massage she even taught me some qi-related body shakes I could do to transfer my energy back into the earth rather than up into my head.
(I live in Humboldt County, where these kinds of lessons are inevitable. I just accept them now.)
I went home blissful. And sleepy. And hungry. And thirsty.
I ate ice cream and drank lots of water. And then I got a raging, get-in-bed-and-don’t-get-out headache that lasted until I went to sleep at 9pm.
Apparently, as I learned from the internet, feeling sick and getting a headache after a massage is actually a sign that it went well. Something about your lymphatic system and toxins and your internal water balance all getting massaged and released can really throw off the rest of your day.
And apparently, I had a really good massage. Because oh boy, this headache was no joke.
Luckily, it was bedtime by the time it really hit in full force. So I went to sleep and woke up without a headache and with a light, somewhat-flexible neck.
I can still feel my shoulders creeping up to their usual hiding spot, even as I type this, but I’m working hard to keep them down. I’m just trying not to feel tense about what failures my shoulders are. I don’t think my masseuse would appreciate me giving myself tension about feeling guilty about my tension.
So maybe I’ll just shake these bad vibes down into the earth. I hope my neighbors can’t see me.
Today Gabe is wearing a tan fleece, blue jeans, and brown boots.
All week it’s been raining in Humboldt County. As I write this, I’m sipping a latte and debating whether or not I can realistically leave this coffee shop and weather the rain that is pouring down. I know it’s just a short run to the car, but it’s so warm and cozy in here that, even though I don’t have any more work I can work on here, I don’t really want to leave.
And I like it that way.
When I moved to Seattle, I was disappointed by how much this supposedly rainy city didn’t live up to its reputation.
Everyone told me when I got there, “See! Everyone says it rains a lot here, but it’s actually really sunny! And in the winter, it’s just grey, not rainy.”
And I was like, “We are not on the same page about this.”
I was hoping it would rain a lot there. I considered that a perk. I didn’t want it to be sunny. I like the rain. I feel like if I’m going to have a grey winter day, I better at least get some good rain out of it so that I can cozy up to a latte and snuggle under a blanket at home. I want to fall asleep to the sound of raindrops and wind chimes blowing around. I want to wake up to a wet driveway and a sleepy town.
I like the feeling of having to stay inside and burrow down. Maybe it comes from growing up in the Midwest where sometimes it’s so cold in the winter that you just can’t go outside, and sometimes it’s so stormy in the summer that you have to huddle in the basement playing board games all night.
It’s nice to be safe and cozy inside when it’s less-than-nice outside. And maybe I like it to be gross outside so I can burrow down and feel like I have a good reason for it.
A few weeks ago I tried to figure out what my spirit animal was, and I decided it was probably a deer. But maybe I need to be some kind of burrowing creature? A tiny, hide-y, dig-me-a-tunnel-and-I’ll-see-you-next-spring animal? Not that I know what any of those are. (Taking suggestions in the comments.)
And if you’re wondering, Gabe’s spirit animal is probably a pelican.
Every spring, I visit my aunt in southern California, and I always fantasize about living there while we are there. I love being by the beach, and the palm trees, and the every-single-day sunshine, and the bathing suits, and the burritos…
But I think I’d miss the gloom and rain of northern California. We get enough sun to feel like we still live in California (I mean, it was 75 and sunny just a week or two ago), but every once in a while we get to snuggle down and pretend we’re having a cozy winter at home too.
Today Gabe is wearing a tan fleece, blue jeans, and brown boots.
On Wednesday this week, I was having a little bit of a bad day. I decided around noon to exercise my work-from-home right to work-from-bed, and so I turned on my heated mattress pad, changed into comfy pants, and crawled under the covers with my laptop.
I was only under there for a few minutes when the bed started to shake.
I’ve lived in California for (cumulatively) about 4 years now, and I have never felt an earthquake. Once, when I lived in San Francisco, I heard a rumble that I thought was a big truck but turned out to be a minor earthquake — but I didn’t actually feel anything.
So it was strange to realize a few days ago that yes, my bed was actually shaking and no, there was no explanation for why I was suddenly bouncing left to right.
It went on for longer than I would have expected. I actually had time to think, “Is my bed shaking? Are they doing some work upstairs? Is this a big truck rumbling down my street? Oh wait, no, I think this is an earthquake. Am I in an earthquake? Lucky I’m in bed. I hope nothing falls down! Is this still happening?”
It really dragged on.
And luckily, I was in bed and nothing did fall down.
Today Gabe is wearing a tan fleece, a white t-shirt, blue jeans, and brown boots.
This week I got my rhythm back (a little bit more than last week) but I’ve still been figuring out how to spend my time.
I realized I think I’m having such a hard time, partially, because right before I left for vacation, we were in a mad sprint at work with our Kickstarter, so I actually haven’t been living my normal schedule since the beginning of November. I went from working wake-up-to-bedtime for 30 days, to barely working at all.
And now things are back to normal, only I don’t remember what normal feels like.
I keep sleeping through my most productive hours; I normally do amazing things in between 8-10am, after waking up around 6-7. But now I sleep until 8:30 or almost 9, and from there I just seem to lose the day.
(Is it embarrassing that I just had the thought, “I guess I could start setting an alarm for 6:30 or 7 to reset my schedule”? I honestly just thought of it. I haven’t woken up to an alarm regularly for like 2 years…so I guess I forgot it was an option? Oof.)
It’s been hard getting back into yoga too. When I was on vacation, I got a little — let’s call it “soft”.
I was feeling so strong before I left and over the summer I had lost 8 pounds and to be honest, this fall I was feeling pretty good about things.
Then Christmas vacation happened. And the softness rolled in.
Christmas wasn’t all bad for my yoga lifestyle. I got some beautiful new yoga clothes as Christmas gifts (shout out AG!) that I desperately needed, and which gave me a *huge* boost of confidence in my first class back.
But then in my second class back, after the thrill of amazing new clothes had worn off a little, I realized how much of my yoga powers I had lost. I started having trouble clicking in mentally, and I definitely had trouble aligning all my poses and having super strong arms.
(Ha ha just kidding I have never had, and probably never will have, strong arms.)
It’s slowly coming back. Just like my work routine is slowly coming together, so is my yoga. Slowly.
One thing I’ve been enjoying a lot since being back is the weather. It’s sunny here! It’s warm! Not shorts-weather-warm, but great weather for taking a hike by the beach.
Gabe and I headed to an unexplored trail by the beach this weekend, where we found ourselves out of the sun and under the canopy of many a redwood tree. We had a weird conversation about nothing, where I told him really interesting stories like how I had recently purchased some pre-shelled pistachios and wasn’t sure how I felt about them, and he told me about dubious plans to create an all-rope tree fort one day.
It’s fun to have conversations about nothing with people sometimes.
I used to be a terrible conversationalist, and after many years of working really hard at it, I think I’m actually pretty good at it now. It takes a lot of effort (as an introvert, every bone in my body usually wants to run away from the idea of most conversations) but it’s a skill I’m really proud of.
But sometimes it’s nice to just say boring, weird stuff to someone you love. Under a canopy of redwoods. Knowing that when you come out it will be a bright sunny day, and one of you has a coupon for ice cream that you’re about to go use.
Today Gabe is wearing a tan fleece, blue jeans, and brown boots.
I don’t think I’ve missed a week of writing this blog in, like, over a year. But last Friday came and went without a post, and I barely noticed.
And to be honest, I wasn’t sure when I would find the time (or the enthusiasm) to write this blog post either.
Such is life, when you are doing a Kickstarter.
You guys, I remember way back when (back before we launched and life as I knew it changed forever) a friend of my cofounder, Kate, saying that your Kickstarter project will become your full time job. And I remember thinking, “Yeah, that is probably true.”
But I guess I didn’t realize that by “full time” he actually meant that the project would consume the fullness of time, which is to say, 24 hours a day and 7 days a week since we launched at 6:06 am on Thursday November 20th up until 6:06 am on December 20th when the project closes.
The other day, Gabe and I were eating lunch at a Mexican restaurant (where I later went on to order and then stress-eat an enormous wet burrito). We sat down at the table and, after a long, extended silence, I said, “Sorry. I’m just trying to think of something to talk about that isn’t the Kickstarter.”
And then I talked about the Kickstarter for 10 or 15 minutes.
What’s taking so much time? Honestly, as I’m sitting here trying to quantify it, I don’t really know. Lots of outreach to people who blog about notebooks (yes, this is a thing), tweeting at people, sending out free previews of the notebook, emailing with backers…and I guess just a lot of time thinking. Thinking about ways I could be doing all of this better, more efficiently, and more effectively.
We met our funding goal on Day One, which neither one of us expected, so we’re kind of making it up as we go along. It’s amazing to be where we are already, but it’s also weird and scary. This project could end up making us some serious money for our business and could be an amazing opportunity — so I feel like there is a ton of pressure not to blow it.
And yet, “blowing it” is not even defined. So we’re working desperately trying to avoid an outcome that neither one of us can identify. And working to achieve a different outcome, which we also cannot identify.
But somewhere in there, amongst all the tweets and the late-night conversations about backer updates and funding goals — for one glorious day last week — it was Thanksgiving. And yeah, I worked on the Kickstarter for most of the day, but still, I did also manage to cook some stuffing and eat a LOT of food.
Gabe cooked a turkey using the undignified “spatchcock” method, and I made stuffing that could stop your heart. (The recipe called for an entire stick of butter, and who am I to say no?) Gabe’s parents made mashed potatoes and gravy and French bread and (out of a sense of duty) a salad. We ate five different desserts, including a pecan pie and a cheesecake, and then we all sat around digesting and playing dominos.
All day long, Gabe reminded us of the five pillars of Thanksgiving:
- mashed potatoes
It was a great day. I took a lot of photos of Gabe and Romeo. Of course.