Sunday morning musings

Peaceful morning with the coffee on the table and music at the background – what else do I need right now? 🙂

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Appreciating the beauty of the moment put aside, I feel like my anxiety is checking on me, and as a result, I feel like I must convince myself that there are remedies.

I increasingly recognize that there are two types of anxiety creating situations:

  1. one; when there is a real issue which if left unattended may create bigger issues, and;
  2. second; those that exist as possibilities which upon becoming reality can create a real issue and if left unattended may create bigger issues.

I deal with both of these the majority of the time.

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I am pretty good at managing the 1st type of anxiety creating situations (mostly work-related). I still time to time struggle with them as well, especially when there are too many of them all at the same time, which stresses me.

The best remedy I have found so far?

Reminding myself my past experience:

  • I will not be scared for no good reason
  • I am able to handle anxiety and issues – so far I have. It may take some time and can down me a good chunk of the time, but I have seen that I am strong and resilient
  • Challenges grow me and I have solved many of them in the last few years especially. I can feel confident
  • I will continue to be okay with those thoughts that will benefit me, move me, and motivate me so that I can move on

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The second type is the one that comes from nowhere. It kind of places itself in my mind when I have no or little type 1 anxiety creating situations.

The best remedy I have found so far?

Reminding myself;

  • I will not be scared for no good reason
  • I will think about what to do when my fears become a reality – until then it is a waste of my emotional stability, time, and energy to try to find solutions to non-existing fear-creating situations. Over and over I have seen that I can make (more) rational/logical decisions at the face of adversity
  • I will not resist to anxiety creating thoughts; no matter how many times I come across anxiety

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Saturday morning musings

  Life is good, my friends 🙂

It is a quite and peaceful morning with lots of sunshine and beautiful music at the background.

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Since I have got up quite early, the usual cleaning the house chore is done and breakfast has been enjoyed.

The extra cup of coffee, of course, is next to me and provides me the much appreciated feeling of “joy”.

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I cannot complain about life or my life right now – what a blessing 🙂

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Sunday morning musings

Life is good, my friends – Sunday morning is here 🙂

I am feeling good this shinny morning with my coffee next to me. Sky is bright and coffee smells fantastic. I have a short business trip to make this afternoon – it always feels great to leave all the stress and current issues behind and focus on the moment while traveling.

Many years ago it suddenly occurred to me at an airport that all I was going through at that time was normal – I was living my share of life. It was my experience, the person next to me had their own experience – better or worse – but what matters was that all I was experiencing was a part of life. And it was my life. Acceptance is soothing. That gave me peace then and after that whenever I remembered it.

That does not mean that I could not or cannot change my life. I have made pretty good changes that worked towards my objectives since then. I also got lucky and found a great job that in many ways improved how I was feeling about my own capabilities and how I was doing financially.  In so many ways, my life was much better.

This work, of course, comes with stress. We are highly competitive and there are expectations from us. These grow each year, so do we. Many of the current hurdles I have at my professional life is a common experience by many of my colleagues. Should I feel relieved?

A little bit, sure.

We all have our share of professional life.

Soothing….

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I was talking to one of my friends and colleagues yesterday about my years-long, now in the past, weekend morning routine. This always consisted of going to a nearby cafe and enjoying coffee and some pastry. Then I would visit a book store and enjoy my time and return back to my home with a book or two. I would read those books during the weekend, which would take my mind away from the work and other issues I may have. This routine was me-time. Somehow along the way I lost it because I decided to save money. Hmmmm.

Was this a great decision? At that time, it was because I was able to get into a frugal and hence surprisingly abundant life-style. I may have thought 20-25 bucks a weekend is a good amount of money to save – and it is. I enjoyed while I did this. But just yesterday I realized that I have also lost an efficient me-time practice.

Since then I developed new interests and hobbies. Blogging, baking bread, gardening, having and propagating plants – especially succulents/cacti, painting pots, jamming/pickling, and slight sewing activities. I enjoyed all of these and I continue to do so. But, there is something exciting about new endavours. They intrigue me. They excite me. They increase my abilities. 

I am not sure what my next interests/hobbies will be, but I sure am looking forward to identifying them and working towards enjoying the products 🙂

Have a great Sunday everyone 🙂

early Sunday morning musings

It is a Sunday 🙂 A beautiful quiet, peaceful, and relaxing morning.

I woke up early at around 5 am – my unusual habit lately.

I am smelling, tasting, and enjoying my morning coffee;

listening to classic music which I have never listened to before (change is very good);

cooking my chickpeas meal for the day (a portion will be frozen to be eaten later);

planning things to enjoy my day (getting my tax filed would be one of them);

still enjoying the memory of saying “no” to the social yesterday and being proud of myself for that;

liking the change in me and prioritizing my own needs and wellness over others (this is not being selfish – it is being responsible and caring towards myself as I am to others, who can actually do things themselves but for some reason prefer me to do things for them).

It is a beautiful day that needs to be cherished – I hope we all are having a great Sunday 🙂

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Sunday morning musings

First thing first, I am enjoying my coffee – what else 🙂 🙂

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It is a beautiful morning, quiet and with an open sky. Traditionally we expect our first snow sometime this month. I actually love seeing snow. It is the ice and snow banks on the side walks that prevent me and others from safely walking during winter. Other than that, there is something nice and innocent about this fluffy white substance called snow…

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Anyways, did I mention that yesterday I participated in a community event where I and 5 other colleagues/trainees had a booth and distributed information and implemented games/puzzles to draw attention to our work? It was the best thing I have done lately, with lots of small kids visiting us. We have had lots of fun and laughter together. Knowledge exchange and dissemination directly with the public puts a significant meaning to our work and it is highly motivating. We must be doing more of these events!

Since this event took almost the whole day before 5 pm, now I must take care of the weekend chores including doing the laundry. My regular Sunday activity of baking a sourdough is on the list as well. And, today my friends I will try dry fig jam for the first time 🙂 Let’s see how this will turn out. A portion of the jam will go to my colleague who gave us a ride to yesterday’s event (together with the sourdough), to my friend who gave me the figs, and another colleague/friend of mine who has treated me to a dinner last week. I hope that I will be able to get a good jam. I have never tried that before but in my experience the recipes online are good enough and my first trials are always better than second trials! 🙂

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And the daylight saving adjustment is in effect as of today and we have one hour longer to enjoy in this beautiful Sunday. I wish all of you are going to have great time and make beautiful memories today 🙂

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joy journal – Oct 1, 2017

1. I am grateful for sleeping well and waking up in relatively good mood. I am feeling better today, with no obvious negative thoughts or stress. Lovely 🙂

2. I am grateful for my coffee 🙂 This drink is a great start to day, waking me up and giving me an instant satisfaction and pleasure. It is great that we have means to prepare coffee anytime anywhere at an affordable price.

3. I am grateful for cooking chick peas 🙂 I had put around a pound of peas in water yesterday. I was not expecting them to cook in 30 min 🙂 My mom was right – if you simmer them after they start to boil, it helps them to cook faster. Counter-intuitive, is it not? But give it a try. I am sure you will be surprised as much as I was 🙂

4. I am grateful for baking two great sourdough loaves today. I feel abundant and joyful. 

5. I am grateful for working at home, nice and easy. I could not as much as I wanted to do, but I have done good. This takes some of the stress away from me.

6. I am grateful for not chickening about a document I am reviewing. It is a kind of critical document that requires my full attention. I cannot make a mistake, or ignore a detail. It has been going well, knowing that I am doing my best and it is pretty good. My experience with this document helped me to develop some kind of confidence in my ability to handle critical assignments. There happened in me some kind of acceptance that it was difficult, can have significant negative consequence should I not do a comprehensive and thorough review, but it was what it was. An opportunity to grow.

7. I am grateful for the kefir cheese I made from kefir yesterday and today. It is healthy and tasty. Both my sourdough bread and kefir cheese seem to be resistant to microbial growth, which is quite pleasing.

8. I am grateful for my internet connection and computer that make my life easier and fuller.

9. I am grateful for getting used to silvery tone of my hair. Right now I do not feel like I am old. Who knows what I will feel tomorrow, but I will take this positive thought right now.

10. I am grateful for the safe home and neighbourhood. It is quite and peaceful. The only noise I can hear is from my internet and keyboard.

11. I am grateful for having the night to myself.

12. I am grateful for speaking with my family today. They are always nice and supportive.

13. I am grateful for feeling courageous today. I needed this feeling.

14. I am grateful for the gray weather that helped me to stay at home and work.

15. I am grateful for making beet pickles yesterday 🙂 I thought they would take a lot of time, but I was wrong. This is my second or third time making them. I noted the ingredients and their measurements (that my mom told me) to help me in the future.

16. I am grateful for my notebooks, pens, and paper that make me write on. Writing always relaxed me. Like this moment, even though it is an electronic text.

17. I am grateful for all the food I have in my fridge and pantry.

18. I am grateful for having no pain today.

19. I am grateful for being grateful and taking my time to note these here.

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Things that I appreciate about myself:

  1. I appreciate the fact that I keep going, no matter what
  2. I appreciate the fact that I am not scared of difficult tasks
  3. I appreciate the fact that I keep a quiet life
  4. I appreciate the fact that I keep my contact with my family
  5. I appreciate the fact that I cook simple but healthy food the majority of the time
  6. I appreciate the fact that I enjoy the scenery of my yard
  7. I appreciate the fact that I make an attempt to keep my home clean
  8. I appreciate the fact that I always take at least 2 hours per day to chill down and relax
  9. I appreciate the fact that I am a good friend and ready to help my friends
  10. I appreciate the fact that I have been kind to myself nowadays
  11. I appreciate the fact that I floss and enjoy it!

 

 

 

 

Saturday morning musings

Another Saturday morning filled with fresh coffee, music, and “me” time 🙂

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It is a kind of chilly day that deserves staying at home and finding ways to enjoy the day. I have no plans to shop or go out for other reasons, so this suits me well today.

I must, however, do house chores, my necessary yet un-joyful weekly activity, which continues to break into my day time plans. It is a great reminder of what needs to be done in order to have a comfortable house life. And, I will do the chores, knowing that after them I will feel great about myself, my home, and my life overall. So give me just  another hour to reach this level of serenity.

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The optimism I have had last night continues. I keep repeating in my mind the past experiences that always lifted my life after a period of hardship. I will be fine. I do not know when and how, but life will be good to me again. There are times that we must change things or ourselves, but resist or cannot do. Eventually life takes it at its own hand and puts you in a period that is challenging, anxiety-creating, and uncomfortable. We must go through this time, which maybe we were supposed to be with our own efforts, but did not. Life corrects us. 

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They say wisdom comes with age and I kind of believe in this now. Our past experiences not only develop us, but also help us understand how life works and have hope for the future.

I have had many hard periods of life as well – it was not fun. Once upon a time (a.k.a. when I was younger), I had had a sense of adventure that made me curious about life and future possibilities. The entire world was under my feet, I felt strong, able, and good. Those times have left me a while ago. I think it is my current conditions that I prefer; living in a small city, having a once-permanent and great job which is hard to leave, etc. that made me feel living in a much smaller “world”. Aging and having past medical conditions exaggerate this feeling as well – I find myself asking and wishing for a stable and comfortable life conditions. So my choices are limited.

What are my choices?

For today? 

For tomorrow?

For the next few years and beyond? 

I want to be responsible for my life and life-style, the way I think and process information, and the way I act. 

Considering the difficulties I have experienced currently, making different and better choices is gonna be hard to do, but I know that once I start it, just like my house chores, it will likely move on.

Best to everyone out there who is struggling one way or the other.

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Saturday morning musings

Listening to a piano piece, and drinking and enjoying my coffee on this quiet and sunny Saturday morning. What else would I need to feel grateful for this morning?

 

This is a day full of house chores, shopping, and interactions with family and friends. excpet the first one, you know, all is exciting 🙂

I am not sure why I do not enjoy house chores. But I kept thinking that I may not be the only one feeling this way. Shout out in the comments area if you are like me.

There is a beautiful , serene feeling coming after the house is cleaned and tidied a bit. It is brighter, more peaceful, and certainly more enjoyable. While I do start house chores out of necessity (one of my almost consistent house rules is to clean the house on Saturday mornings), but the positive feelings I experience after I see it cleaned, organized, and decluttered for the week is amazing 🙂

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As per shopping, I must visit a number of stores today. I plan to get some paint to help finish re-staining my porch, some dried food from a retailer, and yogurt from another nearby store. Thankfully all stores are close to each other and there is a bus stop close by. I am so grateful for the public transportation system that enables people like me to go around their lives easily and affordably. Many people assume that a professional like me would have a car. It is always interesting to see their reactions when I said this was not the case 🙂 I wonder how many of them see is as a limitation on my abilities or choices, rather than a good choice economically and practically….

That reminds me another memory where one of my colleagues was surprised that I had bought a house only after 5 years of moving here. He said he bought his house within two weeks after moving here. I had to tell him that I did not have a down payment at that time. While that was absolutely true, I did not mention that my main reason was that I was not interested in purchasing a house. I have never been and now I am a house owner (ahem…)…. I am still feeling a little bit sour about this; re; feeling the pressure to make an explanation……People can be very judgmental when comes to others. The same colleague was quite judgmental about our work yesterday, not knowing the importance and meticulous nature of it. That pisses me off.

Why do we speak up our minds and evaluate others’ situations without giving a thought on it first? There are so much to learn if we do reflect and think about possible reasons for choices made by others. If not, listening to others can help expand your thinking capabilities. Let’s reflect on this for a moment. I certainly do. I am not excellent about it either, but at least I constantly remind myself and get humble about things. That is one  more thing to be grateful for today.

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I am also grateful for my family, who were always there for me and mostly supportive. They did not get my circumstances and thus are not able to understand the reasons behind some of my choices, either, but at least they are trying after. This is priceless.

Go hug a family member today 🙂

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Sunday morning musings

A quiet and rainy Sunday morning that gives a feeling of solitude and healing. 

Coffee with its unique smell and taste is also very helpful.

I usually do not enjoy rain, but sometimes it helps you to stay in and recuperate with warm drinks and slightly dark day.  Sometimes it is depressing, sometimes healing. You choose.

We are looking for a week full of rain according to the forecast. It will be too much but we will survive. Heck we survive 6 months of winter here, what is a couple of cups of rain, right? 🙂

Weather with its unpredictable and uncontrollable character is something that teaches us to accept life as it is. We often adapt it to well. Except that the hurricanes going on in the South, damages they make, and the fear they create are alarming. I wish everyone a safe evacuation or a strong shelter during these hurricanes. When I was in the USA I never have experienced an evacuation and I keep wondering whether I could ever make it as I do not drive. I kindly ask everyone who is able to do so to pick up people that are not capable of evacuating themselves.

Wishing everyone a safe and joyful Sunday! 🙂

 

Saturday morning musings

It is another quiet and peaceful Saturday morning filled with the great scent of freshly brewed coffee and the excitement of all the possibilities that the day may bring.

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It is rainy outside, which tells me that being outdoors today is not a practical option. It will be a day of home-entertainment I guess, including the dreaded house chores 🙂

I am doing something out of ordinary and have the TV on. It has been sometime that I watched TV. Once upon a time TV was very important for me. So was reading books. Things change I guess. In the last 1-2 years, I switched to writing and reading blogs than doing these activities.

The following certainly does not apply to me 🙂

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I think three things influenced this change:

1) My lower back problem that makes sitting in the couch uncomfortable, so I rather prefer to sit or lie down on bed in the evenings. This means I am away from the living room and hence the TV.

2) Shopping bans on books that started as a short term ban, which later is extended naturally. I used to buy 2-3 books every weekend, which was a great pleasure that I always looked forward to. Two years ago I started my budgeting and frugal life journey, which told me that what I was doing was not a great idea, also considering that I have had many books that I have not read yet. The massive decluttering followed the shopping ban showed me this very clearly.

3) The fact that I am resentful towards the cable provider. I have a package involving phone, internet and cable. While I was able to reduce my bill by negotiating with the company, I must say I am pissed that all of these services cost so much. In addition, I cannot cancel my cable because it is a package, and if I do remove it, phone and internet together would cost me more!! Which kind of a mentality is this? I feel like my cable service is a waste and I do not feel great about it.

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But I would like to encourage everyone to call and negotiate with their service providers; I was able to reduce my internet-phone-cable service and another important service in the last one year. For two years in a row I also get my credit card fee to be waived. I will change my credit card sometime to get rid of this fee altogether. Hoping to get a cash-back one because honestly cards with loyalty points are not great; it takes a long time to accumulate the points and when you collected sufficient points, then the service or item you look for may not be easy to get or available. I was lucky enough to get 3-4 plane tickets and a number of great items through the loyalty points so far, but I keep asking myself whether it is worth it. 

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Anyways, back to best of life – I hope everyone will have a great Saturday today! I wish we all can get the best of this beautiful day 🙂

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Sunday morning musings

It is another Sunday, another beautiful morning, and another opportunity to get excited and joyful about life.

Somethings can help:

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and

 

 

Go lose yourself 🙂

 

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Saturday morning musings

It is a beautiful morning 🙂 Birds are flying, trees are washing with the breeze, sun is warming and inviting, and coffee is just great 🙂

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When we grow up we listen to a lot of fairy tales. After a period of hardship, difficulty, and loss of hope, lost of great things, opportunities, and beautiful things happen in those tales. I once or twice reacted to this in my adult life, saying that the reality is in fact not like this and they fooled us by believing in that everything will be beautiful at the end. I felt like these tales were not representative of real life.

Today I think a little bit differently. I think we needed these tales to realize that things can turn to better way. That we should have hope and faith that things can and will be better in the future. It is not realistic to assume this is always to case, but the truth is that there is a chance that it will turn better and we must believe in this and find some kind of relief, hope, and optimism, rather than dwelling into negative chaos. 

So I repeat this sentence since yesterday:

“Everything will be great”

To recognize this chance and shift the focus of my mind from negativity to positivity. It worked this morning and may work at other times. I will use my chances. After all life is all about learning, experiences, growing, shifting, and most importantly about noticing and enjoying everything it can offer to us. 

And today I enjoy not only my coffee, but being alive, safe, healthy, and the well being of my loved ones.

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Sunday morning musings

Another lovely summer morning – hope everyone is gonna have a great day!

I am enjoying my coffee and the bright day outside. Already walked in the yard to see how the plants/seeds were doing. Some of the seeds germinated alright and my potato and onion plants are growing. It seems like a spider formed his net where my potato plants are. Yesterday there was no such thing. Nature is an amazing thing. Perhaps I should start studying zoology 🙂 The yeast and lacto bacilli bacteria in the sourdough starter, yeast and all bunch of bacteria in kefir, and all the lives in the yard….. I have a little piece of nature here 🙂

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My plans for today is to start re-arrange the furniture in the living room, while also decluttering that area. This is gonna take a number of days as the arrangement in my mind is something new and I do not even know that in reality it will work. So I will take it easy and will come up with alternative plans if needed. But I am determined to change the current face of the room. The items that I bought yesterday from the thrift store are making this room look quite better already. I am so excited about this 🙂 One of the best times of my weekend time spent 🙂

I also am trying a vegetable sourdough today. It smells gorgeous but not sure how I would like it in a bread. We all will see this this afternoon.

And in the evening, of course I will keep watching the X-files! Friends; when I was young I knew about this show but was never mesmerized by it. Now, I am hooked! I started from season 1. Mulder and Scully are so young, so different from each other, but also so sweet and innocent. These actors should have had lots of fun and development during this series.

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When I retire (!), one of the plans I should have is to have a fan review of these and other series and characters (like Game of Thrones). So mesmerizing is this thing between Scully and Mulder, and Brienne and Jaime. Damn!

 

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And, I have reached 1,000 followers today… I never thought that I would have such a large number of bloggers finding something in my blog. What a significant milestone. Thank you each one of you….

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When I started this blog in Nov 2014, I did not know what I wanted to do with it. But I had things to say and boy, did I say them. This is one of the 1225 posts that exist in more than 15 different categories.

Notable categories include:

baking bread: which has been an intense interest since May 2016. I failed quite a bit but after a year or so now I have generally nice quality of loaves. Every weekend is an excitement because every weekend is an opportunity to try a new recipe, a new sourdough loaf. Could not ask for a more exciting hobby.

joy Journal: where I write the things that I am grateful for. The most healing experience that I have had for years. There is something exciting and surprising about finding the so called little things and experiences that fill your heart with joy, excitement, and happiness 🙂

Conscious spending: is where I documented my financial hardship, plans, failures, and achievements. It has been 2 years now that I have a budget that ever evolves and bring me not only savings, but also gratitude and joy.

Random thoughts: is where I write about no particular theme, but whatever comes to my mind, often unrelated things and events. It is one of my busiest categories of mine. Truly loved.

Kate’s short story, poems, The life in the diary, Sasha’s story, fiction bits: are my literary trials. I started this blog mostly focused on these, especially Kate’s short story and poems. i am not a professional, but i love writing free style and putting those words that come to my mind without much of a revision. Every once a while something, a sentence, a paragraph, a poem comes along that surprise me. These are precious…

Sunday morning musings: is a new one that I started lately to write solely on the joy, relaxation, and beauty of this wonderful weekend time. It is the most optimistic of all my writings and I really love this. So for so great 🙂

Now I am gonna go there and start my day. But, first let me get another cup of coffee.

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Have a great Sunday everyone!

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Sunday morning musings

This Sunday morning too I am plain lazy on purpose and focused on lovely activities.

For example, my usual and long (3-4 cups long) rendezvous with coffee is going well and very enjoyable.

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I have already walked around my small yard with my coffee mug in my hand to see how the seeds and flowers were coming out after the long rain yesterday (and they are all good).

I have had a light breakfast with the beet sourdough loaf I had baked last week and strained yogurt, which makes me feel quite light (not bloated).

Weather is great outside, warm and inviting and there is sunlight everywhere which opens my spirit and joy box.

And I am listening to some songs that I have not for years, which makes me nostalgic and wanting to do more of enjoyable things today and the days to come.

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I have little plans shaped for today. I think I will talk to my family first thing first and then go out for a walk and to buy some sewing stuff. I am really excited about this opportunity – hopefully what I need are all available in the stores that are open today (not too many choices, but we will see). As usual, I will bake my weekly sourdough loaf (with kefir – the first ever trial of mine – we all will see how that will turn out tonite). I will also cook a nice dish with minced beef and eggplant. It is great that summer is here and reminded me about this dish. I am guilty of not cooking great recipes that take time and require care, but yield the best taste ever. This one I am really looking forward to.

Cooking GIF - Find & Share on GIPHY

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Now let’s go find something to do that comes spontaneously and makes me feel like on top of the world! 🙂

Nature GIF - Find & Share on GIPHY

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Sunday morning musings

Happy Sunday everyone 🙂 Wherever you are, I hope you are having a great day, joy, hope, safety, and anything else your heart may desire.

Happy father`s day too! Those fathers who have been great to their kids and families – you should be proud of yourself. Hope you are having a great day too.

I am having a rather quiet Sunday.

When compared to yesterday this is an excellent change I must say. So how was my Saturday? First of all, I prepared my first sourdough with beet and we shall see how that will develop this afternoon when I bake it (proving now). I also did quite a bit of shopping yesterday: as usual I went to a store 10 min away to purchase milk. And then to another one 25 min away (on foot) to purchase yogurt that was on sale; I consume them quite frequently so I was happy to get them yesterday. Also, weather was so nice (around 20C, which is Summer! for us here) that walking and being outside felt like I was on vacation somewhere exotic or something 🙂

Sunny GIF - Find & Share on GIPHY

Then, as if all these walking was not enough, I decided to walk (~1 hour each way) to a shopping mall, having a hair cut along the way and checking two thrift stores for pitchers. Well, at the end I did not find anything I really needed, so I also checked a department store. I found a pitcher but honestly it did not give me any joy, so I decided to leave it there (even thought it was affordable and do the job). I am glad I have done this because I checked another nearby store and guess what? I found the loveliest pitcher just like I wanted: affordable (and on sale), large enough to take all the kefir I produce (around 3 liters – I plan to collect a couple of days’ produce and store in the fridge), with a large neck/lid (so that cleaning inside is easy – kefir usually leaves it fat marks on glass quite easily), and the lid is adjustable so that you can tighten it up or loose as you wish (which is critical while dealing with kefir, because grains produce gas which needs to escape the container otherwise it can explode)! How happy I was with that purchase? Very 🙂 That is a great feeling.

Dance GIF - Find & Share on GIPHY

When I reached back home it was already past 7 pm and my legs were just aching. I think I walked around 3 hours yesterday. I know I could stretch and relieve some of the muscle tension in my legs yesterday but I was too lazy to do this and rather I slept over it and now I am feeling much better. 

So, what are my plans for today? I am taking it light today. I have an interesting sourdough loaf to bake, family to talk to, some laundry to do, and some work to seriously think about. I can also work on the yard and clean the weed up.

And, I can always enjoy my coffee and reading 🙂

Books GIF - Find & Share on GIPHY

Have a great Sunday friends 🙂

 

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Sunday morning musings

It is a quiet morning.

I am sipping my coffee with gratitude and listening to a great song by Sia:

 

As usual, morning routine consisted of shaping my sourdough loaf, brewing myself coffee, checking the news, and planning the day ahead. Needless to say, news are depressing. Almost everyday something insensible or violent happens – the humanity better shakes itself up. Why can’t we just love all? I know love is complicated, one can prefer love for one over the other, and it is not always shaped by our feelings but by our thoughts, but I keep wonder anyhow. Choices, my friends, are interesting. All these choices we have made in our lives. 

Choices GIF - Find & Share on GIPHY

I have had another dream that I remember. I interpret this dream as being adaptable to the unforeseen changes in life and distinguishing between the fears in our lives and the fears in our minds: we just had a conversation about this topic a couple of days ago. Or, it can be interpreted like this: sometimes it is okay to take time and not rush at the face of an adversity to resolve it that can create more problems; this pretty much sounds like what was going in my mind lately about my work situation; it is not the best time to aggressively look for jobs right now. Things will change for the better – so stay put for some more time.

Leroy Patterson GIF - Find & Share on GIPHY

My plans for today is to bake my Sunday sourdough loaf, plant seeds in the yard, bring forward the summer clothes and hang into the wardrobe, speak with family, cook a cauliflower dish, and walk. Not overly exciting, but so far looks really good.

Have a great Sunday everyone! 🙂

 

gifs by:https://giphy.com/gifs/choices-kvRNohxbdCdby;https://giphy.com/gifs/leroypatterson-3oz8xQQP4ahKiyuxHy

joy journal – May 2, 2017

1. I am grateful that I dreamt yesterday night. I cannot remember what it was but I believe that dreams are a way of my subconscious mind working and expressing itself. It is supposed to be healthy, so all is good 🙂

2. I am grateful I woke up early and I was okay with it. Friends; I keep getting up before 8 am and that feels really weird. I mean, when I was young nobody could make me get up before 9 am, and now I am up at 7 am?? What is up with that? 🙂 And what is next – will I get up at 6 am, brew my coffee in dark, have breakfast, and then leave home for work? This… has…never..happened… Never! Cannot happen… Can it? 

3. I am grateful that weather was nice and I was energetic so I walked to office in the morning 🙂 It was a relaxing walk, as usual. There is something very satisfying about starting the day with something as nice and beneficial as walking; I keep telling myself it is healthy; good for my bones, muscles, cardiovascular system, my mind, and emotions. In addition, by not taking the cab or the bus, I demonstrate self-sufficiency 🙂 These are all great things, right? 🙂

4. I am grateful for brewing my coffee at the office. I could not achieve my Spring plans of reducing the amount of coffee I drink yet. In contrast, it looks like I developed a tendency to drink more…. Argh…. At least though, I am drinking also tea (the original idea was to replace a part of coffee with tea…). Perhaps soon I can cut coffee… Who knows?

5. I am grateful for working between 3 different meetings today. I was actually overwhelmed by the amount of work I must do – so at the afternoon I was rather lost and not focused. But between 4-5 pm, I have worked quite efficiently. This feels good.

6. I am grateful for organizing for a social with my current team and past members 🙂 I am really looking forward to this lunch next week, which excites me. One of my favorite past team members emailed me and gave me some great news about her career. I am so proud of them. All of them were great and brilliant people. I hope they will always have great jobs and be surrounded by awesome people.

7. I am grateful for eating healthy this evening. Have you tried cabbage salad? Since I am  a lazy person it fits me well; basically I shred cabbage and season it with olive oil and salt. Voila – it is ready! 🙂

8. I am grateful for my clothes, shoes, and boots that keep me warm and make my life easier.

9. I am grateful for having internet connection, a great computer, and this blog-space that make it possible for me to explore, read, learn, interact, and write 🙂

10. I am grateful for being grateful 🙂

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What do I appreciate myself for today?:

I appreciate myself for not reacting negatively to getting up early in the morning

I appreciate myself for making a consistent attempt to eat healthy

I appreciate myself for collecting the garbage in the yard 

I appreciate myself for walking and not spending a dime today

I appreciate myself for being kind to myself today

 

joy journal, April 16, 2017

It is a sad day because of something I cared most about crumbled for good today. 

In any ways, a living organism finds a way to entertain its survival instinct. In anyways, it finds ways to survive.

So here is my way for today.

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1. I am grateful for getting up early and having a long day in front of me. It is a challenge to fill a long day with activities. But it is also an opportunity to do things without rushing.

2. I am grateful for the coffee I have brewed at home. It is such an affordable and enjoyable activity.

3. I am grateful for enjoying my morning walk. It was chilly but a bright day and the walk was quiet and lovely. Looking at the houses on the street and assessing their characters is always an interesting activity. A good scenery makes a good difference.

4. I am grateful for not buying peanut butter today! Boy, I love this butter! The trouble is when I buy it, the entire 1 kg bottle is finished in 2-3 days. It is insane! So many calories.. It is not good when I am trying to lose weight. It has been a struggle to not buy it today, but I know that it was the right decision. I congratulate myself 🙂

5. I am grateful for drinking two tall glasses of milk. I have no warm relation with milk really.. Other than the fact that I am making an effort to drink it so that I can get some calcium and vitamin D. That is all. So when I drink not one but two glasses, naturally I feel great about it 🙂

6. I am grateful for the bean dish I cooked today. Friends, I learnt how to best cook beans easily (thanks mom). I am excited about the fact that I am consuming much less of canned bean. Feels awesome.

7. I am grateful for the two sourdough loaves I have baked today. I have had a great dough in the morning. Shaping and baking them was fun – the oven spring was nice and easy and the crumbs are much better than I had expected. what a great sourdough starter I do have! Come to think about it, in two weeks it will be a year that I started baking bread… what an exciting, satisfying, and healthy adventure it has been 🙂

8. I am grateful for speaking with my family and their well being. May they always be happy and healthy.

9. I am grateful for drinking water. I enjoy drinking water especially if it is kind of cool. what a refreshing drink.

10. I am grateful for eating tomato and cheese for breakfast. I am eating tomato quite frequently lately. I have never been a fan of this fruit (I think it is considered a fruit), but it makes a good breakfast material with a dash of olive oil. very tasty indeed 🙂

11. I am grateful for having the evening to myself. It is quiet and I can do whatever I want to do.

12. I am grateful for the movies I am watching and the songs I had listened to earlier. what would I do without the background noise at home? I am lucky to have my TV.

13. I am grateful for shopping my night cream today. It is kind of pricey and i am about to run out of my last bottle. So finding it on sale was an unexpected excitement for today.  

14. I am grateful for thinking and reading about how to be happy. How do we get happy? What is happiness? How do we make ourselves happy? One person was saying on a website that she was happy when she spends time with her husband, son, friends, and while driving. My goodness – I have none of these (no hubby, kids, or car – friends are on the other side of the world so I cannot spend time with them). Joke aside; what is happiness really? How do I make myself happy? How do I become happy with my life? With life? there are so many issues at life and I am so “incomplete” in some ways (being away from my family is the most important reason for that). They say we are responsible for our own happiness. Boy, is it really? Happiness, to me, is not a choice but may be a consequence of choices. Why do we need to choose? because we believe that one option is better than the rest and we take that option. It solves a problem maybe, maybe not, and then time passes and now we are somewhere in our lives where that choice does not matter anymore, yet the conditions are such that we are not, we cannot be happy.  Or may be we can be happy, but we think it is dependent on something that we do not have at that time. I do not know what happiness is but I know what makes me feel good. Perhaps that is what I should be focusing on – to feel good.

15. I am grateful that walking and doing weight exercises make me feel good about myself. 

16. I am grateful for writing these here.

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What am I appreciative of myself today?

I thank myself for being a resilient person – I may be sick, I may be down, I may fail, but I will always rise back on my feet.

I thank myself for making an effort to eat healthy and have a healthy life-style

I thank myself for making an effort to continuously save and for having a frugal life

I thank myself for loving my family

I thank my body for being healthy

I thank myself for being resourceful

I thank myself for not giving up on hope

I thank myself for still keeping going….

if I had 172,800 bucks..

I would maximize my TFSA, pay back my HBP (Home Buyers’ Plan), make an annual mortgage pre-payment, double my mortgage payments, give a portion of it to my family members, invest the rest, and have a nice Chinese meal somewhere to celebrate.

There.

My dream for today 🙂

They say the more money you have, the more you get. Sometimes I believe in it. I also believe that the more I think I do not have money, the more I find myself spending… What an interesting dilemma….

Years ago when my finances was really low (I was kind of like a student), I had read somewhere that we must set our subconscious mind right. Upon a suggestion I read in a book, I put a number of coins in a glass container and placed it in my kitchen window. Each time I pass there, I made it habit to say “I have money“. It felt good and I can say that year I saved the most money I have ever did until then even though the money I made was quite tight 🙂

Since it is new year and my budget is more or less in check, nowadays I am feeling in control of my finances. Yet, we have got some extra taxes implemented in the new year and also our pension plan contributions have been increased by our workplace, so my salary as of new year is  less than last year. I am determined not to lose track or my saving momentum, but considering how already and significantly I have cut my expenses in the last 1.5 years, I for a moment lost my hope and started to feel like I was financially restrained again.

Then, I thought about the people who have survived the war times or the great depression and I knew that I could still cut out expenses should I wish so. I can cut my coffee in half (currently having 5 cups on the average every day), refrain from buying clothes/shoes/boots for many years (I have plenty), change my diet (not necessarily into an unhealthy one, but a more frugal one), use regular flour rather than bread flour for my bread, stop treating/gifting my coworkers and friends, learn to grow veggies in my yard, stop dying my hair, sew better, stop miscellaneous gifting, stop socializing at expensive restaurants, stop wasting food and every other item in my possession and find ways to re-use them, find alternative ways to enjoy rather than writing on notebooks with fine pens, and so on and on….

Come to think about it, some of them are not bad idea (like cutting my coffee consumption – too much of anything is not good anyhow). I am quite bothered by waste, especially the food waste and still have some fresh produce stalling in my fridge… argh… (I should go back to shopping as required rather than weekly store visits). I can also switch to regular flour (which is cheaper than the bread flour) in my sourdough loaves. I can pay more attention to sewing techniques and start sewing myself blouses (which is my primary aim now).

The point is that there seems to be multiple levels of saving. The life circumstances can challenge us, but there is usually more to change and more to save. Hopefully without reducing the quality of life and hurting our health.

Hey, maybe I should thank those extra taxes and pension contributions. They stretch my mind and imagination 🙂

how did I breathe the same air for two days?

Do our homes aerate themselves, or do we keep breathing the same stale air over and over?

I have 6-7 plants that are supposed to generate oxygen during night, but I am assuming our homes are not air-sealed and I hope there is some exchange is happening here and there.

Otherwise, it would mean that in the last 50 hours or so, I have just breathed the same air because since Friday evening I have not left my home!!!

I do not know how that happened! Even in snow days I would get out of home, even for a short time.

I am surprised.

Very surprised.

I know I was supposed to get out and shop on Saturday, but it was heavily raining that day. So I stayed in, cleaned the house, did the laundry. Okay….

Today?

Why did I not get out today?

I do not know.. But what I know is that this is possibly the first time in the last handful decades that I have stayed in for two days straight.

I hope I will not do this again – it does not feel right.

Time to start my weekend breakfast at the nearby cafe again – they almost motivated me to get out and made me enjoy my day right away….. I missed the smell of the coffee and the taste of the bagel….. I missed carrying the cup out with me and drinking it while walking…. I missed feeling the fresh air on my cheeks and nostrils… I missed being with the life that is happening outside.

Lessons learnt and over.

 

 

joy journal, Nov 5, 2016

I meant to have a great weekend and so far it has been going well 🙂

1. I am grateful for the refreshing and easy sleep. For someone who has had sleeping problem in the past, it is such a wonderful thing to be able to get sleepy, fall asleep at night, and wake up rested and feeling well.

2. I am grateful for the coffee I treated myself with in the morning 🙂 One cup of coffee can sure make me feel pampered and energized 🙂

3. I am grateful for the bagel-like pastry I baked last week, freezing them during the week, thawing over-night, and then eating it this morning with my coffee 🙂 I decided that this was a great practice – I know what I am eating and I enjoy trying new recipes. So I decided to make a batch of bagels tomorrow (my first trial – so wish me luck 🙂 ) to consume at the weekends together with my morning coffee.

4. I am grateful for walking to a store 10-15 min away and purchasing the hair dye I would need soon. Using the coupons, both store’s and manufacturer’s, made it a great deal and an excited occasion for me 🙂

5. I am grateful for meeting with a friend of mine and visiting a shopping mall. We spent around 4 hours there, going around the stores, checking clothes and other items, chatting, and drinking coffee. It was a fine day 🙂

6. I am grateful for the left-over piece of cotton I found at a fabric store today. It costed me $2.30 for 1 meter of fabric. I have some cotton cloths that I us during baking (e.g. to rest or the shape the dough on), but I wanted to have extra ones so that I would not feel rushed to wash them every day. The today’s piece was enough for 4 pieces of cloths 🙂

7. I am grateful for the little battery-operated sewing machine my sister and my mom had bought me a year ago! It is like a kid’s toy but sure does the work! I used it for the first time today to sew around the cloths 🙂 I am not done sewing the baking cloths yet, but it was such a joy to be able to operate this little magical tool and fix my baking cloths 🙂

8. I am grateful for not spending on anything unnecessary today.

9. I am grateful for the meal I have had cooked yesterday, which made my dinner easy today.

10. I am grateful for the sourdough I am rising tonite. I am trying something new and I hope to bake something interesting tomorrow. We will see how that goes 🙂 exciting!

11. I am grateful for doing the laundry today; it is sometimes a chore that I dread a lot…. I am glad that I do not have to think about it for another week 🙂

12. I am grateful for the beautiful day today 🙂 it was warm and shinny and felt like early spring.

13. I am grateful for my plan to shop tomorrow at another mall. I am hoping that the weather will be nice (though the forecast says that it sill be chilly) so that I can walk to the mall. It will take around 30-40 min to do so, but I really am looking forward to this opportunity 🙂

14. I am grateful for having the night to myself.

15. I am grateful for the push ups (today’s set consisted of 30! Wohooo 🙂 ) and the other light weight lifting and lower back stretching exercises 🙂 I am getting stronger and that makes me feel a lot better about myself. This is a great feeling that I had missed for some time. I am very, very grateful for this feeling.

16. I am grateful for not getting bad news today.

17. I am grateful for my back being pain-free. I can turn around without too much of a problem and it does not bother me at all.

18. I am grateful for not getting crazy about gaining 2 pounds the last week. Okay… Okay… Maybe I am… I was losing weight and it was feeling great and then I stopped and then even put on two pounds back. I have not really eaten too much or too different this week, so I am not sure about the cause of this weight gain. I am still conscious about my eating and making really good choices. Sometimes it is what it is I guess. I hope that the next week things will turn alright.

19. I m grateful for the McIntosh apples I have got Thursday. They are my favorites and I had not had them for months 🙂 The sour/sweet and juicy texture of this apple is distinctive. I have been eating two of them per day since I have got them. I hope to buy another bag hopefully tomorrow 🙂

20. I am grateful for my computer, internet connection, house, job, salary, benefits, furniture, clothes, shoes, and everything else I have at home and in life that makes my life safe, comfortable, and easy.

21. I am grateful for being grateful and taking time to note these 🙂

Joy journal, Sept 19, 2016

1. I am grateful that I survived this Monday too!!! Are you too feeling the joy  coming out of this? I hope so 🙂

2. I am grateful for walking in the morning, although I was feeling tired and it was somehow cold. It was a quiet morning with a serene scenery and walking for sure makes it even better (by moving and relaxing the body). It is good for my bones, for my muscles, for my blood circulation, and for my mind -what else can provide all of these but walking? 🙂

3. I am grateful for my coffee! I brew my coffee at the office and drink quiet a bit of it. Only that today around noon, right before a meeting, my stomach got upset. Luckily a colleague of mine had salty crackers and shared them with me. I felt much better after that.

4. I am grateful for my colleague who shared their crackers with me 🙂

5. I am grateful for working really intense but nevertheless productively. I cannot believe that just yesterday I was relaxing at home, without doing anything particular. It is amazing how well we adapt to work conditions and its pressure.

6. I am grateful for walking back to home in the afternoon. I must state, however, it was too cold.. Time to get the scarfs and gloves out.

7. I am grateful for the soup I have had at home that was the greatest medication after the cold walk. It was a simple soup prepared with chicken stock, potato, and lost of lemon juice. Sure to heal and warm you up 🙂

8. I am grateful for working up late today and finishing some important documents. I have been incredibly busy last week and will be quite busy the next two weeks too. I will give my best. The best thing; I have a business trip to Europe for a couple of days after that, which will give me time to relax. I am so looking forward to it 🙂

9. I am grateful for my standing desk at the office. In the last few weeks I always worked standing up. My back feels overall better; I believe the standing desk, walking and stretching everyday helps. I am not naive enough to think that I can stop here and go back to my previous unhealthy and un-ergonomics life, but at least I know that with little changes, I can make a positive change in my life. That is priceless 🙂

10. I am grateful for my blanket that keeps me warm tonite 🙂

11. I am grateful for my family being safe and sound. That reminded me a sad occasion of a close friend of mine. She was in love with someone else, who finally decided to marry another person. That guy was killed recently in a freak robbery attempt while on honeymoon….. How sad is this? Anyways… this is supposed to be a joyful entry – so back to gratefulness…

12. I am grateful for having a house, furniture, clothes/shoes, and heating system, all of which make this cold night manageable.

13. I am grateful for my books, internet connection, computer, notepads, and pens that make my life exciting 🙂

14. I am grateful for the TV series I have been watching this evening.

15. I am grateful for all the opportunities out there that wait for me and for everyone else. May we all recognize them as they cross roads with our lives.

16. I am grateful for being grateful and writing my joy journal tonite 🙂

joy journal – August 14, 2016

I have lots to be grateful for 🙂

1. I am grateful for the funny movie I have watched yesterday night. I was up till 1.30 am and as a result woke up a little bit tired this morning. However, this movie made me laugh a lot and sometimes very aloud! What a rare treat 🙂

2. I am grateful for the coffee and bagel I have had this morning. My mind was full of thoughts so I did not even remember going to the cafe or eating the bagel, but hey, at least I provided breakfast for myself (I usually do not eat breakfast) 🙂

3. I am grateful for walking to a store 15 minutes away. They did refund me for the passport photo they took, which turned out to be too light in colour and as such, unacceptable for the passport office. No questions were asked. I had no receipt (only their stamp and date at the back of one of the photos) and a form from the passport office stating the reason for not accepting the photo. I was prepared to make a complaint, yet rather I was welcome with a rapid refund. How great is that? 🙂

4. I am grateful for speaking with my family and knowing that they are well and sound.

5. I am grateful for baking my best bread so far 🙂 I have eaten more than half of one of the loafs (it was a small loaf, so no need to get alarmed 🙂 )

6. I am grateful for my sourdough starter that excites me. Today is the 6th day and I must say I was getting tired of taking its picture; analyzing its rise, smell, and texture, and taking notes; and feeding it everyday. It is great that as of this evening, it is placed in the fridge and will be handled only once a week to feed or to use in a sourdough loaf 🙂

7. I am grateful for today not being too hot.

8. I am grateful for eating veggies today.

9. I am grateful for having the night to myself. it is peaceful and just the right temperature. I can read or write whatever I want. It is also a great time for reflection. I have always been a night-owl 🙂

10. I am grateful for my pens and my papers/notebooks that allow me to write, list, or plan things. Very exciting activity 🙂

11. I am grateful for computer and internet connection that make learning, reading, and blogging easy and possible.

12. I am grateful for my floss! I love my floss ( a tri-liner). Am I the only person who loves their floss?? 🙂

13. I am grateful for everything I have at home; my furniture, my appliances, my kitchen items, my shoes and clothes, my books and notebooks, pens and pencils, plants and food. They make my life easy, and me safe, full, warm, and content.

14. I am grateful for being grateful and taking my time to note it here.

15. I am grateful for everyone here who commented on my posts lately, re; adopting a cat. You guys took time to read and respond and gave me many useful ideas. I felt supported and cared, and you may know well that this is a very good feeling, especially when it is needed. So, my friends; may your lives fill with happiness and peace and may your hearts find whatever good things/people/experiences you are longing for.

Thank you all.

random thoughts

A beautiful half-Spring day 🙂

Half, because it was still requiring me to wear my hat, scarf, and gloves, but not my winter coat or boots. Yay!

I have had a good time having my breakfast and then working at home for some time. Since the weather was so nice, I decided to go treat myself with another cup of coffee. While I was there, I also got myself a nice piece of sweets. My first treats in quite some time – I am glad I have done this! 🙂

I then decided to check a nearby arts market and bought a nice photo depicting a couple of old but colourful wooden doors. The colours reminded me Spring and I must have had it. I am glad I did give myself this particular treat, too 🙂

With the newly found joy, I walked around. There are really nice houses in my neighbourhood, some of which are quite old. Their unique characters always attract my attention. It was great to enjoy my walk, too 🙂

I decided that lightness I experienced was amazing and making my walk easier. So, after I came home, I removed the extra items from my purse. Now it is lighter, not like 10 pounds 🙂

After that I continued to work, and talked to a few people on the phone. It was fun, too 🙂

My appetite is good today. I am actually craving for sweets but I am determined to not go buy a big box of cake. I am not sure what will curb my appetite, but I am glad that I have had a green salad and a noddle soup prepared by beef-bone-stock; I feel like taking care of my body better today 🙂

I have the entire night to myself and that feels good, too 🙂

breaking the routine – April 16, 2016

This morning, I surprised myself by, instead of going to the same cafe for the same breakfast, going to another cafe 20 min away on foot. I think my mind was busy with thoughts and my feet just started walking towards another direction. When I noticed that I smiled and took this opportunity to visit a cafe I have not been to for some time.

Breakfast (consisting of my regular coffee and bagel combo) was not the best, but I appreciated the change of place. From there, I visited the bookstore and immediately liked and purchased a book about abundance. I then sat at another cafe next to the bookstore, ordered myself a cup of nice coffee, and started reading my book.

After, I decided to visit a local store or two to buy some food. I am particularly excited about the beef bones that I bought and that make awesome soup base/stock! Cannot wait to consume them.

It was a great morning and a great change of routine for me. Nothing feels better when you break the routine, stop doing the same things and visiting the same places.

It was long overdue for me and I was feeling the weight of the boredom lately. I am glad my feet drove me to another direction this morning and I am glad the weather was nice and I had a thin french-coat on me rather than the winter coat, which made walking not only easy but also pleasurable.

have a great Saturday everyone! 🙂

abyss

I do not know darling;

all now lies in the past

maybe on a sunday morning I can get to remember

with a smile on my face and a mug of coffee in my hand

the scent reminding me your smile

that day on the shore with the sunlight caressing your face

and your hair mixing with the wind

that cute smile on your lips…

remembering that would hurt, but the day is new

even with the pain, now I can walk through

your face had a careless expression

gazing off the ocean

steady and happy like nothing mattered

I was awed and at the same time uneasy

you had mattered to me darling

but this had to stop;

knowing that there was no us

had drilled me bad

I remembered it was unfair, this thing we called life

it was as if I did not get to deserve love

the pain was careless, merciles, inevitable

and I let myself turn around and leave

the air had tasted bitter, the salt had burnt my skin

my eyes had turned red with the pain

ocean’s arms mixed with the rocks and then the dirty roads

blackened they had ruined everywhere they touched

the scent was hellish, disguised in the air

I had failed and fallen; that abyss was dark and deep

terrified yet I just kept going

with each passing second feeling the fear of crash…

it has been years now that this fall has started

I seem to have relaxed inevitably, caressed by the wind

I talk and joke with the darkness

nothing is strange, nothing is hurtful

I keep falling and falling, yet

there is some kind of careless smile on my face

that makes me awed

and you seem to be forgotten

 

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thanking myself for my life style

Self-appreciation is something we do not even think about, but we all deserve big time.

I have many things to celebrate and appreciate about myself, work, character, life-experiences, and resilience. For this post, I will just focus on my life – style. Specifically, for its being simple and cost-effective.

here are the things I come up that makes me quite satisfied about my life-style:

1. Having no car: True that it may be restricting my mobility, but that does not apply to me. I have other means (walking, taking the bus, or flights) to go to places. I do not have to buy or lease one, I do not have to pay for the insurance, I do not have to apply for a parking permit to the city or pay for a parking spot at work, I do not need to look for and pay for parking space in the city, or I do not have to maintain or pay for repairs/replacements.

I am not arguing against having a car or two. Having a car is a necessity for many people, especially those who commute, or have kids to transport to schools or activities, or those who live away from their work places. I also know that it is a must for many where there is no public transport (like many cities I know in the USA).

My monthly transportation expenses, assuming that I take the bus or walk, are around $25.

Just by looking at that amount I now realize how easy it is for me to save…

2. Brewing my own coffee at the work days: I have been brewing my coffee at my office in the last 7 years. There were occasional buys from the cafeteria, but that is pretty much it. I am not sure how much I am saving by this habit, but considering I drink around 4 cups of (light) coffee per day, it must be quite so. A large can of coffee (~$10), 300 grms of coffee mate (~$3), and 200 grms of sugar (~$1) are enough to brew coffee for two weeks.

Can I guess how much I am saving compared to buying 2 cups of coffee/work day from Tims, for example? I think I can:

$3/per day x 5 work day = $15 per week. $60 per month. $120 per two months. Based on this calculation, I am saving around $50/month only from coffee…

3. Not eating out frequently: Since I started my budget last June, I limit it to maybe one or two times a month. Sounds pretty good to me. I used to eat out at least once or twice a week prior to that.

4. Having simple and low-cost pleasures:

   a) My weekends almost always include a morning coffee and bagels at a cafe. This is my signature pleasure – I must have them! 🙂 Honestly, I do not mind giving $6-10 per weekend to them.

   b) Over 90% of my books are second-hand books, purchased from second-hand book stores or the thrifty sores.

   c) I do not eat dessert or meat regularly, or buy food from convenience stores. The last one is mostly because there are 2 grocery stores within 10 min walking distance to my home – I am lucky.

   d) I live alone and I cook for only myself. And if you follow my blog, you know that I do not like to cook… For myself, I cook simple things and salads are my favorites in addition to soups. At the work days, I do not have breakfast and lunch is usually a canned fish or other snacks like trail mix. I am aware that this is not an healthy eating style. So please go ahead have your own delicious meals regularly as you need them, as you wish them. This is how it has been for me for decades and I guess that is what works for me.

   e) I am not interested in fashion and I often buy clothes and shoes when they are on sale. Holiday sales are my favorites. When I travel to other countries or cities, I shop there too, which are often much less expensive than where I am.

   f) Using internet for both entertainment and learning: I am very happy with my computer and internet connection. every evening and night, these give me a chance to read blogs and articles on the net, and watch TV series/movies. being content with these is something I must truly celebrate.

5. Exploring international stores and other small businesses: I can find many food, diverse food, at a reasonable cost in these stores. There is one close to my home where the spices, oriental sauces, pickles, canned beans, noodles, legumes, and olives are way cheaper than the stores. Many of these items I cannot even find in the big chain grocery stores. Plus, there is a pride and satisfaction coming out of supporting small business owners. Win-win situation in so many different ways.

6. Not hosting dinners at my home: Again, I am not arguing against this.. As a matter of fact, it is sad that I do not do that. Main reason is the fact that cooking for my lovely guests is an incredibly stressful event for me (only because I usually mess one or two dishes each time…). Maybe once a year or so, I will have my good friends over – but that is it. They understand and I am glad they do.

7. Not comparing myself with Jonases and giving up upon peer pressure: i do not do these. I do not need to have the latest computer or the TV, nor the cellular phone. I time to time get talks from friends about how I need to replace my old TV or replace my phone etc, but I do not give in. Give me a break. It is my life. I will replace my stuff when I need or want them. Not when the others suggest. I hope you do not have such toxic people in your life.

8. Vacations: I take one vacation per year and that is to visit my family. I do that every year and I am glad I do that and I am financially capable of doing that. My friends from other cities and countries invite me to their places, for which I am really happy and touched. If I had more vacation time or more funds at my disposal, I would love to do these visits – they are truly lovely and nice people. But I made a decision long time ago that my family had more priority over my friends. And I am glad I have done that, as now that my father passed away, I am glad I have seen him every year in the past decade or so, or before that whenever I could make it.

 

I am sure I have a longer list of experiences and choices to appreciate. Perhaps at another post.

I am sure you have many thing to appreciate about yourself. I would like to encourage you to find and appreciate those choices you have that enrich your life without breaking your bank account or psychology.

cheers 🙂

 

breaking the routine

Taking advantage of the fact that I have got up at 8 am and I had 2 hour before my appointment in the morning, I decided to go get coffee and bagel at a nearby cafe.

I took my time savoring each bit and after that I even walked 30 min to my appointment. There was no slush on the roads, little ice here and there. So walking was not a problem.

Come to think about it, I may as well walk to office every morning (as long as it does not rain or snow). And, if i get up early like today, I may first have my breakfast at the cafe and then walk to my office. That (that is, having breakfast during the work days) would be so unusual of me, but  guess I would like it.

I feel good about this.

today’s indulgences

  1. two cups of coffee and two bagels toasted just right and with lots of butter. Warm and crispy at the same time. What a delicacy it was 🙂
  2. binge-watching a TV show. Of course, it is a romantic comedy. Just the right type 🙂
  3. yoga/stretching class: lots of breathing and back stretching. I felt all of my back muscles tonite, elongating all of them.
  4. lots of rest – no work today. Life is good 🙂

joy journal, Dec 5, 2015

Looks like I have not written in my joy journal for a very long time….

Partly because I was busy with other useless posts (such as healthy life style journal, which I now happily ended) and partly because I was busy with reading all I can find about the Game of Thrones series 🙂

Time to re-start this wonderful experience.

 

1. I am grateful for sleeping well and getting up around 9.30 am. The night was restful and I have even seen a dream. I do not remember it now, but it was, like any dream, interesting.

2. I am grateful for the coffee and bagel I have had in the morning, while also checking my emails and social media sites – always a delight.

3. I am grateful it is not snowing today; after yesterday’s dump, the streets are cleaned but the sidewalks are still under snow banks. Walking is a challenge but at least we do not have ice yet.

4. I am grateful for cleaning my home and ventilating it by opening a window for an hour or so. I was not planning to clean my home this week as I have to work. But I did it anyhow once I started cleaning the kitchen and the bathrooms – I am feeling pretty good about this 🙂

5. I am grateful for working, for wanting to work, and for progressing my work.

6. I am grateful for shopping this afternoon; I have catched some sales at the grocery store and saved quite a bit.

7. I am grateful for the pumpkin pie I have purchased frozen today; I have baked and eaten it. It made my home smell great and it tasted just amazing.

8. I am grateful for my warm and safe house in this chilly day.

9. I am grateful for having the night to myself. The night times are the best; they relax me; I can read, watch, or write. Freedom..

10. I am grateful for my internet connection and computer that make this experience possible.

11. I am grateful for my interest in the Game of Thrones that makes my mind focused on things other than work itself; reading about this TV series/books has become my favorite past-time activity lately.

12. I am grateful for not being a racist, discriminative or stereotyping person, or a plain asshole.

13. I am grateful that no matter how much people annoy me with their discriminative behavior, racism, or horrible characters, I keep my cool and my mature behavior.

14. I am grateful that even though I am angry with some people because of their wrong behaviors, now I choose to enjoy my weekend.

 

 

 

 

healthy life – style journal, Nov 8, 2015

there has been changes in my body, which incidentally overlapped with the time I started to eat less carbs and more protein.

As a person good with observations and patterns, I could not help but think whether the carbs were not so bad after all; perhaps they help and are required for certain body functions?

Perhaps I have not done well by limiting carbs that much; but I can tell you this; the amount of carbs I was eating was above normal limits too.

So even though I have had this conflict in my mind, I will keep limiting the carbs and continue to eat better. I just will not get crazy about occasionally eating carbs.

Today’s diet reflected this.

late breakfast: 2 bagels with butter, coffee with cream and brown sugar. I ordered two bagels to test myself; nope, they are not as tasty as before so I am glad I have done that. the way they are toasted has not been great lately and that strengthens my choice of not eating bagels anymore. The coffee is not tasty either; I never liked this cafe’s coffee – so why do I keep drinking it? the answer is that it is in my favorite cafe. The cafe is my favorite because of its bagels and its staff, not the coffee. I decided to change the cafe from now on; it will also help me with seeing different places and having different experiences. A great step towards breaking a habit and the routine in my life. Exciting! 🙂

late lunch: 2 bowls of vegetable chicken soup

dinner: 2 hard boiled eggs, 1 tomato, and half a large cucumber with 2 slices of bread. I was too lazy to cook and I wanted to eat raw veggies. I am glad I ate the tomato even though it is not one of my favorite veggies. It was from the last week and I am glad I have eaten it before it started to go bad. Cucumber, as always, was a delight to eat.

late-night snack (added later):  1.5 glass of milk; 10 rice  cakes with caramel. Totally too much. Yet felt good. Like when you are at school and they tell you not to eat during the class. Or laugh. Or talk to our peers. And something prompts you to do it anyhow and miraculously you do not get caught. I am not sure whey I am rebelling against healthy eating (am I bored?), but mentally I am feeling good.

exercise: 10 min in the morning

supplements: iron (prescribed) at noon; vit D and calcium (recommended by my doctor) after dinner

stretching: none yet

breaking the routine, Nov 5, 2015

I have done a couple of wonderful changes today, by the help of a business meeting in the morning away from my work place.

The meeting ended around 11 am and I walked to a nearby shopping mall. I went directly to a cafe there and got my coffee and two bagels. They were delicious and the mall had that sweet scent that reminds me the winter days and the holiday season.

I am glad I took my time to do this visit to the mall, rather than rushing back to my office after the meeting (as I usually do).

What a great opportunity to realize that life can be relaxing and awarding, I can be fine if I take time off of work, and work can still be taken care of even I am shortly away from my office:)

The life in the diary – XVII

Fiction

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May 11, 2013

It is one of those days that I feel cheerful for no reason.

I grabbed my jacket and left the house for a nice walk. The fresh air is so lovely; feeling it on my cheeks, on my skin. Time to time there is a little breeze that caresses me. The sky is open and blue and it is around 25 C. It is a perfect spring day 🙂

As usual, I walk with my hands in my pockets – for some reason, that makes me feel good. Very good. It automatically puts a smile on my face and lift my upper back up. No more sluggish walking. Confidently and cheerfully I start to walk.

The street is wide and long; I can see the road ahead crossing it and the shops at the far end. They have bright colors, these shops do. I know they are doing this on purpose to appeal clients. Well, they are doing a good job by getting my attention as well as by making me feel grateful for what I see. Not surprisingly, I am a good customer of one of these stores.

I enter the store. I love this store as there are so many items that I regularly love to check. I for sure forget everything by just focusing on their items. And their prices and variety options. I have got my most cherished CD in this store years ago. I loved it so much that I had also bought a copy for a cousin of mine. The personal grooming and cleaning products are my favorites; I love the lip-stick that I keep buying from this store, for example. It is a glossy cherry-brown; neither too red nor too brown. It lifts my spirit up while also preventing them from drying. I love my lip-stick…

I do not buy anything this time, knowing that I am rather on my way to a long and relaxing walk. I leave the store, turn right, and start to walk down the street towards downtown. My home is located right at the perimeter of downtown, so it is 10 minutes walk to it. I feel excited about this. I always loved being around people, around movement. There is some kind of energy that transfers right into me. Maybe I am an energy-Dracula (this idea makes me chuckle 🙂 )

I do not have a definite plan as to where to go. I am free to go wherever my feet carry me, free to stop wherever I wish. The freedom, the feeling of having no rush, is giving me serenity, a mental chill. Not the bad type. Like water distinguishing a fire. It cools down my nerves and makes me breathe just fine. Slowly. Steadily. Peacefully.

I see a little store and get in. This is the store whose coffee I like. The hazelnut coffee!… Smell is mesmerizing me…. I buy a large cup, pay the clerk, and get out to continue my walk. I am in love with the smell and the taste of my coffee. I smile for no reason and shrug my shoulders as if to say “I do not care about anything, anyone, or any memory right now; this moment is mine and mine only. And I am enjoying it“.

I look at another cafe on the right side. I come here time to time, not for the coffee but for the fresh pastry. During spring and summer months, it is a great pleasure to sit at a table outside while eating fluffy pastry. Watching people walking up and down the street and feeling the sun on my skin…

Come to think about it, I have so many things that I like about this city and about my life. Who is happier than me right now? Who can possibly be? I have a lovely drink at my hand, walking in a fine spring day. I feel happy. For no reason or little reasons. I am lucky to have all of these.

I stop at the lights to wait for our turn. I remember how I had once skid and fell in the middle of the road in a winter day. It was my first experience with the black ice; never saw the darn thing. People had offered to help me get on my feet. For such a big city, people are great; they have not forgotten to be considerate and helpful. I love these people. I love this city.

Finally it is green light and I walk in between 30-40 people towards the center of downtown. There is the organic store on my left I check time to time. Teas and spices are my interest. Especially one of the herbal teas; I cannot remember its name. It is odd but I affirm that I will remember it later. Better yet, I can go to store anytime and recognize it by its look. I have a good memory still yet.

I contemplate about visiting the book stores a couple of streets ahead. I have spent so much time in them, often to distract my paining mind that I do not want to get in there today. I shake my head and continue. I love books but I need not to remember my pain. Not today. Not now. Not for some time.

I glance at the tall building on the right side. I used to live in that building once. Whenever I am around, I look up to see my ex-flat on the 30th floor. The glass window in the living room was awesome, as it would show the downtown with no reservation whatsoever. I could see not only the buildings around, but the hot dog stands, the bus terminal, and a little bit of the harbor at a distance…. People were everywhere… The nights had the best view; the lights scattered around the dark blue sky and the brown sidewalks. Even in the middle of the night, this city was alive. Energetic. Awake. Listening. And with it, I would lie awake on my couch, listening, but mostly lethargic. Sometimes crying, sometimes thinking. But mostly peaceful and serene.

I loved that flat and my life in it. Come to think about it, I had hard times there too, but it is the best things, best and happiest memories I tend to remember. Making peace with my past seems to come to me naturally. Only after years of remembering all of course….

to be continued

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The life in the diary – XVII

All rights reserved.  © https://lifeasiinterpret.wordpress.com/

would you call this waste?

When I was a child, one of the novels I had read was about a poor immigrant family living in Brooklyn in post-war era. The family was poor alright, but the father would put extra effort to get a small amount of coffee and they had made it a tradition to have 1 cup of coffee per person each Sunday morning. It was their way of celebrating their life together and rewarding themselves with something nice and valuable while everyday they struggled with financial hardship.

What had stricken me most was that the daughter in the family would not like coffee and she would dump it down the sink. Her parents would know that; never asking her to share it with another member of the family, forcing her to drink it, or omitting her from this family tradition.

They had accepted the fact that it was her decision to do whatever she would like to do with her portion of the coffee, even though it was expensive, hard to find, and would certainly be enjoyed by someone else in the family.

I keep remembering this fictional family time to time. This family had it right and had respect to individual choices and individual freedom, even though it would mean one of them was “wasting” a nice and then-expensive cup of coffee every week. (I would not feel the same way towards wasting food or other essential items, though, which are essential for our survival).

I am not saying go waste everything as you please. No. But I really like this story and how democratic this fictional family was. Maybe they also felt luxurious or abundant in the middle of poverty as they could let one cup of coffee go every week. I do not know.

What do you think?

joy journal – Oct 13, 2015

joy 🙂 happiness 🙂 joy 🙂

there is so much to be grateful of; so little time to express all. Nevertheless, here is today’s joys:

1. I am grateful for having a good sleep and getting up refreshed and ready to take the day.

2. I am grateful for walking in the morning. It was a little bit chilly but walking warmed my body and it was a pleasant walk 🙂

3. I am grateful for my coffee; since I started my job here I brew my own coffee at the office. I love the morning routine of brewing the first thing in the morning, and later in the afternoon as I wish to have it. I believe I am saving a lot of money by doing that and I am very pleased with this 🙂

4. I am grateful for meeting with my team members; they have done well while I was away last week. My new team member seems to be doing good and another team member is supporting him at his work activities. I like the collegiality that my team members shows to each other.

5. I am grateful for the seminar we attended at noon. The topic is closely related to what I would like to develop. Seeing the cons and pros of other teams’ works is certainly beneficial for the design of my own project. I will see how mine will be finalized. I really hope it will be funded 🙂

6. I am grateful for the snacks at my office. When I do not have time to grab something to eat, they are the ones that i munched on.

7. I am grateful for having nice chats with two other employees at my department. It is good that we can be cozy and friendly with each other so that next time we need each other’s help, it will be easier to communicate.

8. I am grateful for the late-evening meeting we have had today. I am usually drained in the afternoons, but this one was interesting and charging.

9. I am grateful for walking in the evening back to home. When I reached home, it was past 6.30 pm. It was kind of late and I did not feel like cooking for dinner. It was good that I have had food prepared at the weekend; they helped me to have my dinner without too much of a hassle.

10. I am grateful for working on a presentation scheduled for next week. This was only requested last week. So time-wise I am constrained, as I have another presentation to prepare for a meeting two weeks from today. I was stressed this afternoon, but now I have half of the presentation ready, which is a relief.

11. I am grateful for not eating too much today 🙂

12. I am grateful for the food I have in my fridge and freezer – they make me feel abundant.

13. I am grateful for yesterday being an off day; although today felt like a Monday, there is only three more days till the weekend. I plan to work during the weekend to catch up with tasks at work, but at least this is going to happen within the comfort of my house.

14. I am grateful for the milk I am drinking; it is a new addition to my diet after my doctor recommended vitamin D and calcium supplementation. I am happy to get these nutrients through food rather than supplement pills (though I need to take one pill a day, by drinking milk, I free myself from the second pill).

15. I am grateful for the pain medication I have had at home; I pulled a muscle at my back. these medications help control the pain and increase my mobility.

16. I am grateful for not taking the cab today and for not spending on anything (yay!). Come to think about it, since I started to walk in the mornings too (the last few weeks), I have had many “no expense” days (including no bus fare); how great is that? 🙂

17. I am grateful for being warm, safe, and sound in this chilly autumn day.

18. I am grateful for being grateful 🙂

healthy life-style journal – Sept 12, 2015

Yesterday late-nigh snack: 1 apple, two slices of whole wheat bread, cheese, yogurt with 2 tbs of brown sugar. I was craving for sweet yesterday night. Try yogurt with brown sugar; it does not dissolve much and you can feel it 🙂

Today – breakfast: 1 hard boiled egg, 2 cups of coffee with cream and sugar

Lunch: I had a late lunch today; 1 hard-boiled egg. I thought that would be enough till dinner (I was working and did not want to spend time to have a large lunch). Yet, it just made me more hungry… 2 chicken legs (boiled), 1 bowl of chicken noodle soup with lemon and black pepper (delicious).

Dinner: White rice with yogurt. I over-ate it – I do not usually eat rice. When I eat, I eat multiple plates…

Late-night snack: 2 apples. At least I did not eat too much late at night. That is a success 🙂 Also no bread or bagel today.. hmm. that was a great day even though I ate too much white rice.

On thing goes well another thing not so well. Well..

Exercise: 10 min walk in the morning – that is all.

random thoughts

I feel like writing about small indulges that make me feel pampered 🙂

Considering that the only expenses bigger than $1,000 were my washer and dryer (excluding my flights to visit my family and my house), I guess I am doing good pampering myself while also looking after my funds.

So here is a list that I can come up with now:

1. Having breakfast: I love having breakfast at the weekends! there is something nourishing about it and the fact that I get to have it on the weekends only, it is my way of start celebrating the weekend. Breakfast does not need to be too expensive (though it  depends on your preferences. Nevertheless, breakfast and lunch are often times much cheaper than dinners).

2. A good book that captivates my interest. There is nothing like a great book that makes your day enjoyable, time frozen, and mind and heart filled with new knowledge, emotions, and empathy. 90% of my books are purchased from second hand bookstores or charity. The only book I have had pricey was a project management book I needed to study as part of a certificate program (time to sell it now). Borrowing books from libraries, of course, does not cost a dime – give it a try.

3. Chicken noodle soup: is there any other food that nourishes the body while also relaxes the mind? What is the cost of this? $3?

4. Taking photos: that is a really fun activity. Other than the cost of the camera and print outs, the cost of all the memories and lovely pictures recorded is basically $0. Plus, can we really put a price on recording memories?

5. A good cup of coffee every once a while. I love caramel or maple syrup added coffee every once a while. There is a cafe that do these in a shopping mall I go time to time. A great way to award myself.

6. Food: food is always a tricky material for indulges. I happen to reward myself a lot by food, especially pastries and bread (though I am trying to limit them lately). My new year eve meal is almost always some pastry I make at home with beef and pastry sheets. Even though I love this meal, I am glad that I do not bake it more than twice a year.

7. Movies: Although I have not done this in years, seeing a movie at a theater is a lovely experience.

8. Tea, apple cider, and hot chocolate: whether black, green, or herbal, tea has a calming effect. On cold winter days, in addition to tea, hot chocolate and apple cider are my favorite beverages.

9. Leisure walking: Although I do not do this as often as I wish to; when I do, I enjoy it very much. Especially those that occur spontaneously where I do not before hand plan for the route, take my time to enjoy and examine the scenery (even looking at different houses and their characteristics can be an interesting activity).

10. Going through the stores at the airport: One of my favorite activities! I love looking at the merchandise and the variety of items. This is particularly nice when the airport is in a different country. As you can guess, the books sold are the ones that get my most attention. but hey, they are great 🙂

11. Browsing the stores: I have a negligible habit of impulse buying thus I am not afraid of going thru an entire store, examining and exploring the items. It is one of the meditative experiences for me when I truly focus and thus get a mental break from daily thoughts and tiredness. Thanks to this activity, I have discovered many different food (e.g. savory I am so fond of) that were not a part of my regular diet.

12. Taking a road trip: I love it when we drive on a car together with friends or family. Have you noticed that the conversations are different, lovelier during road trips? Especially when we all are going to places that we have not explored before. Whenever I have a chance to suggest an activity, i suggest a road trip 🙂

13. Music: Music is… awesome! I listen to it while at home and office. The free music channels and youtube makes it basically free. Could not be happier 🙂

14. Writing my blog and reading other blogs: Very amusing, relaxing, informative, and affordable activity. Okay I need a computer and an internet connection to do so, but these two help with so many activities (listening to music, watching videos, doing research, learning, booking flights and hotels, etc.) that their cost comes really low. Plus writing helped me to learn a lot about myself – how about that as a great benefit?

15. Planning, planning, planning: I have a thing for planning for goals I would like to tackle. Coming up with a question and then designing a step-by-step strategy to reach the goal is always exciting for me. Yep I do mess up with executing the plans sometime (my recent healthy life-style plan that I blew is a good example), but eventually all go well.

16. Sleeping in: every once a while there comes a weekend morning that makes me sleep till noon. This does not happen to much, but I believe it happens when my body needs it. Often times, it is relaxing.

17. Sleeping late: there is something peaceful about late-nights, some kind of freedom… Friday and Saturday nights are my freedom nights when I can stay up till late, reading, writing, or watching TV. Serenity..

18. Spending time in my yard: I have a small yard with a couple of trees; lilacs are particularly my favorites. Seeing them in summer is a beautiful feeling. The same thing with just being in the yard and listening to the sound of trees – the soothing whoosh their leaves make with wind…..

19. Scents: I love my perfume but due to scent-free policy of my workplace, I only wear it at the weekends. Its scent is so lovable I am glad they produced it! The same thing with candles and soaps. I have a soap that leaves a nice scent after each hand-wash. I would not change it at all. When comes to candles, I did not buy lately but I make sure to check them at the stores. One of my favorite one has honey-cinnamon scent.

20. Wearing my best shoes: I am a person of habit, so I keep wear the same things weeks after weeks. Yet, every once a while wearing a different outfit or my favorite shoes makes a difference in my mood 🙂

21. Grocery shopping: I love grocery shopping. Finding fresh produce is a rare and often cheerful activity for me (where I live, fresh produces are hard to find).

22. Shopping after the holidays: this is the season for shopping!. The sales right after the Christmas are unprecedented. Boy, do I stock up? 🙂

23. Thrifty store visits: Even though I often end up not buying as much as I plan to, I love browsing through the shelves in thrifty stores, especially the kitchen items and the books. A good book I certainly will buy. The kitchen items are mostly an interest; to see all the old stuff… I have a thing for old things. They are different and very interesting for me.

24. Ethnic stores: There are so many different things in these stores that I make regular trip to one close to my house. It is a little food store where I can find the most interesting spices, hot sauces, and dried food. Plus, that store is incredibly cheap. I wonder why that is.

25. Soft facial towels: These are priceless; there is nothing nicer at the end of a busy day to come home, wash my hands and face, and feel the soft towel on my skin. I would highly recommend you to get a thick, slushy towels that is a delight to use.

26. Creams and moisturizers: my hands require hand cream throughout the day. In winter, it is almost essential to moisturize the rest of the body. I am grateful for these creams and lotions that not only nourish my body but also smell good 🙂

27. Time spent with family and friends: Do I have to talk about it? It is the favorite activity of many people. Are we not lucky?

I hope your list of things that make you feel pampered is longer than this.

Go pamper yourself in this beautiful Saturday! 🙂

random thoughts

The summer is slipping out of our hands; I have been wearing jackets in the last few days. I sure will miss the sunshine 🙂 Well…. till next time.

I left the office early but continued to work at home. Sometimes it is a lot efficient this way, though I feel bad about not being in the office.. Anyways, looks like my “take-it-easy” days are over and I really need to kick if I want to finish things in a timely manner. And I do. Working will thus continue throughout the weekend. Cannot complain 🙂

I did grocery shopping this afternoon, which really made me feel good. I like shopping :); I gotta tell you though buying less items and as required made a huge difference in my “waste” levels. I am glad that this is working for me.

Today was also the first day of my new financial week (i.e. feeling rich as I have a weekly allowance at my disposal)- I treated myself with a cup of take-out coffee in the morning, right before a 9am meeting; could not be happier 🙂 And I am really proud of myself that I now have no problem catching the bus or waiting for it should I get up a little bit earlier or late. When I remember the internal fights I have had for several months till the last couple of weeks, I am sincerely surprised. It tells me that change does not come easy but it comes eventually….

By this inspiration and by noting the fact that I was only gaining weight in the last few weeks by not cooking meals at home, I am now moving up with my next challenge in the list: eating healthy food and losing weight. Just like taking the bus rather than the cab, I expect this effort to be a little bit inconsistent at the beginning, but later becoming standard.

And did I mention I loved shopping? 🙂 Yes.. Yes, I have. I will treat myself to a thrifty store visit this weekend. Hey, I may as well bring the bags of clothes that I had sorted while decluttering my wardrobe a couple of weeks ago. I meant to check them again to make sure that I was not giving away anything that I could use, but the fact that I have not done this since then tells me that I already gave up on these items. Time to find a new home for them.

have a great friday evening/night everyone 🙂

my first day at my new office

Time did not fly, I was excited and happy, it was bright and shiny, I worked effectively but without straining myself, and I did not want to leave…

I was so excited and happy about the new office that I literally dragged people to show my office 🙂

I have more space and a more effective furniture that gives a sense of “big space”. I think the size of the office is not bigger than my ex-office; it just has better furniture that is all. Considering how much paperwork I dumped prior to move is also reflected as having less amount of folders and paperwork around. It is just spacious, this new office is. And I love it as it is. I hope I will be able to keep my promise and keep it uncluttered, clean, well-organized, and harmonic.

This morning I brewed my first coffee at my new office. Walking down to hall to get water (from the fountain) or to the washroom, which is now at the end of the long corridor, was not a problem. I even thought “it is great walking on this floor, little exercise, I am lucky”. The printer will be located somewhere probably not too close to me; great, another exercise opportunity for me.

At noon, I had tea at my office, which I usually would not. Tea has a calming and healthy effect on me. I am bringing more tea bags to the office tomorrow. I appreciate all of these changes.

Men will come in a couple of days to put nails on the wall for my art-work. I have two art-work so far, but I would like to get more. So, I am planning to get multiple nails here and there. It is interesting that I have had hardly any art-work at home…. Now, it looks like I am addicted, how interesting. I believe I will start hanging paintings and photos at home too (I just do not know how to find the best spot on the wall – will ask a friend to give me a hand).

Anyways, the entire floor is just settling. Some of my colleagues are scheduled to move tomorrow. I have one last heavy equipment left at my ex-place, which will be moved on Wednesday. This week all moving should be finished and we should find our ways around this large and spacious floor.

This move changes a lot of things. Our secretary has now an office right across from my office. It is nice to have her as a neighbour. One of my close collaborators is 5 meters away. My team members are scattered a little bit, but that is okay. They used to be seated within meters of me at our previous place; I think this distance is good, provides some privacy to everyone, and I can focus on my work more.

Since it is such a big floor (we have the entire floor now) and offices and the rest are partitioned well, it is also somehow quiet. Perfect place to have a quiet mind and do amazing work.

breaking the routine – March 30, 2015

well; my list seems to be long today 🙂

1. I did walk from office to home (after a few weeks of taking the bus).

2. I woke up easily and almost joyful; not grumpy as I almost always am.

3. I did not stress myself over work and all worked very smoothly today.

4. I made a concious choice of not drinking the 3rd cup of coffee.

joy journal – March 16, 2015

In a snow-day like today, there are usually things done to be grateful for :), here they are:

1. I am grateful for getting up at my usual time prior to the end of daylight savings last week – the entire last week I had continued to function 1 hour off; my body seems to have adjusted to the change now.

2. I am grateful it was a snow day and I had an unexpected one day off. I am not going to hide the fact that I was bored a little bit at home, but nevertheless I guess it helped me to refresh my mind a little bit.

3. I am grateful for shovelling a lot today; great exercise 🙂

4. I am grateful that we had chatted with a neighbour of mine while shovelling. I meant to introduce myself for some time. It is great that we both were shovelling at the same time 🙂

5. I am grateful that I have eaten more protein and vegetables today than my usual. In the last couple of months I have not been cooking much, or eating vegetables. It is a good step toward taking care of my body’s needs and well-being.

6. I am grateful that while shovelling I have noticed a couple of teenagers carrying coffee cups with them. I immediately understood that a large coffee shop around the corner is open today, despite the snow storm. I went there after a couple of hours to drink coffee and have a late-breakfast. Walking, even for a short distance, the fresh air, coffee, and the nice lady at the cash were all lifted my mood quite a bit.

7. I am grateful for listening to the music and relaxing a bit.

8. I am grateful for calling people I love and chatting with them.

9. I am grateful for the day; it may be snowy, windy, and all, but I am here now and I am glad I am alive to see this day.

10. I am grateful that despite the weather we have not lost power; heater, TV/cable, and computer/internet are all functional, making my life better.

11. I am grateful for chatting with two of my friends today; they are both very nice, very kind friends. It was good to connect.

12. I am grateful for watering my plants. For some reason I keep forgetting. Today I broke my routine of watering them at the weekend only. well done 🙂

13. I am grateful that I was helpful to a colleague of mine with a matter – it was through email, did take 5 minutes of my time, and it was useful. I am happy with that.

14. I am grateful for not feeling down today.

15. I am grateful for changing the topics I usually read today. humour for example – I think I should visit more humour-related sites. It makes one feel better.

16. I am grateful for my house being allright, despite the cold and bad winter we have been having so far.

17. I am grateful for being grateful, for finding things to be happy about, making efforts to enjoy my day, and giving thanks to people. I just had thought this morning; I have these slippers that I like but now are quite worn-and-torn. I am thinking about replacing them. I imagined dumping them into the garbage can without thinking… I did not like this idea. They served me well and they deserve to be cherished and acknowledged, not disappear from my life as if they meant nothing to me. when the time comes, I sure will say good-bye to my slippers with my thanks. The same attitude I wish to have for other items or people. Especially people..

Something to think about

I thought about taking today off yesterday night as I was very much enjoying the quietness and low-pace of the night, writing, and reading. But, this morning as soon as I woke up, and I woke up a little bit early today, I started thinking about things to do at the office and I was ready to roll.

Then, I opened the door and I have seen ~50 cm of snow at the foot step! By checking the emails, it was confirmed that it was another snow day in this long winter. OK…

Work somehow got into my day through emails and correspondences. At one point I was very much annoyed actually. That was the time when I decided I needed to listen to some music to relax. That went well.

That was also when I wanted to enjoy my day. While shovelling the front door (oh boy; it was the highest snow bank in front of my house; I shovelled around 3 meters long narrow path just to be able to get out of the house tomorrow; the height of the bank was, without any exaggeration, around 1 meter..), I had seen a couple of people next door with paper coffee cups at their hands. That gave me the idea of getting out to get coffee and eat something at the same time.

I did that; I found a nearby branch of a large coffee-chain open. Coffee was awesome, so was to be away from the house for 15-20 minutes. Bagels were not so bad, either.

So, three things I noticed today: 1) when the weekday hits, my mind shifts to being a “work mind” with no problem; that is good, because otherwise I think I would drag myself to work, which would not be nice. 2) If I commit to enjoy my day, I make an effort to do things that I enjoy. 3) coffee and food are usually on top of the list of items/activities that make me feel enjoying my day.

I am okay with all, but I better remove the food out of that list. I wondered; while the things that make me joyful are easy to acquire and quite affordable (that means I am not a “high-maintenance” person, who could be difficult to please..), was this also the cause of my unhealthy eating habits? if I wanted to eat something healthy but not bagels, I sure would have to pay more. Scientists were right; there may be a link between the financial health and the physical health.. Others might also be right; maybe the material should not be a source of our joy…

Something to think about.

breaking the routine – March 9, 2015

here are the things I have done today to break the routine (until the evening):

1. I went to office quite late – after 10 am. It is because of the day-light saving time ending, but however unintentional it was, it was nevertheless was a difference from other days. So it deserves to be in this list 🙂

2. I left the office around 2pm – it is a bright and lovely day, although still chilly and we have a lot of ice and snow on the ground. I catched the bus in the last second (yay!) and went to my favourite book store, which I had not visited almost 2.5 months!

3. I walked a little bit today; from the book store to home, hiking up a hill. Good for my health, too 🙂

4. I had coffee and some sweets at my favourite cafe before I went to the bookstore. I hardly have sweets, but change is a change; helps me to think that it is okay to try new things.

I am sure there will be more to add to this list before I go to bed tonite! cannot wait 🙂

ah yes! there is joy in life; say hi

that is another day; with bright and blue sky

early morning serene and then comes work

coffee in the mug is fuming and feeling like July

tasks are abundant and require overwork

but none of these is a hurdle one cannot pass

first of all, coffee can cool down on the desk

and the files can be fixed and move up one class

have a look at around; see the natural boutique

from human to animals to plants and the sky

ah yes! there is joy in life; say hi

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my love, do something others have not given in

make me another cup of coffee

with awake eyes, just get out of the room

let me lie on the couch, lazily looking at the TV

exhange “good mornings” with a melody

to conceal the shyness in us, as a momentary remedy

pour the coffee in a mug, put it on the little table

let me get off the couch, looking all able

bring that topping you got, let me shake it this time

let me smell and take a sip, oh heaven!

my love, do something others have not given in

please make me another cup of coffee

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with no regrets for time lost from work

after my early morning meeting

done something unusual this morning

I went to the cafeteria to give myself a gift

and purchased a cup of nice coffee

it smelled so good, so did the muffins

and the scrambled eggs

I decided I can treat myself to a breakfast for a change

I bought warm eggs, hash browns, toasted my bread

ah, liberally spread the butter and it melt

found a table next to the window

and enjoyed nibbling on my breakfast, one by one

with no regrets for time lost from work

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all is undelightful, bland in fact

it hurts deeply that you are gone

all is undelightful, bland in fact

I do not find myself prepare breakfast

the ones that we cherished so much

early in the morning

in the sunny little room next to kitchen

with coffee and cream, tea, and old good food

smiling, chatting, laughing

me being cranky as usual prior to coffee

and you pouring down it in my favourite mug

looking at my eyes, looking for an awakening

similar to spring bringing life to nature

each drop of the coffee getting into me

transforming me into finally a smiling one

you smiling back to me, eyes more than lips

eating with joy, flirt, and taste

ah! loving you for ever my love

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breath moving in the air

it is cold in here

I am feeling dizzy; my mind is sleepy

I stopped noticing my body a while ago

I think it was cold, my fingers, my feet, my face

I desperately had missed my blanket

the soup my mom made, tea and coffee

the clothes I have had

I was so wet; my clothes, my body, my hair

I could not do much; I remained wet

nothing mattered after a while

no cold, no worry, no loneliness

all I could see was my breath moving in the air

it was such a nice warming view

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I am really looking forward to the holidays

I am really looking forward to the holidays so that I can take a break from work and my routine. I have to work three days in between the Christmas and the new year but the rest of the time I will spend to sleep in, get my favourite breakfast in the mornings, shop, and to clean and de-clutter my house.

De-cluttering; my favourite holidays activity! I am joking – it is only a quarter true. I am one of these people who would keep things. Once a year I take my time to go through stuff, dumb those not usable any more, and open space for new stuff. It is quite liberating, but sometime despite my best intentions, I cannot throw away things. Certain things still pile up I am afraid. So be it; I am not going to get crazy about things that can wait.

I am looking forward to moving furniture around and changing the living space, too. I am a creature of habit; usually keep my daily routine, whether it is the sequence of events during the day or the restaurants I dine in. Some degree of routine is good; it makes my life easier. Yet, time to time a fresh look or furniture arrangement can stimulate my mind and make me enjoy my surroundings more. So, let’s do that.

Shopping will be fun, too; hoping to catch sales. I love drinking coffee and going around the stores to shop. It makes me feel free; that is weird I know. But once you realize that I drink coffee only on my desk or at the breakfast place all sitting, you can understand why drinking coffee while walking and shopping make a unique and pleasant activity for me.

And as usual, I will take time to reflect on the passing year and develop great hopes for the coming one.

I am getting old now; each passing year makes me realize my mortality a little bit more. Should I be sorry for the days, weeks, years passed or should I be more sensitive to the coming ones? Commit to make the best of them? Realize that there are more in life than the career? See people I like more often? Forget and forgive more?

See? Holidays are great time to grow and change.

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