little sarah Big World

Month: April, 2012

Great + Attitude = Gratitude

…sort of. I majored in English, not Math, Friends.

Things I am Grateful for Today:

-Trees in bloom

-My amazing, supportive, and amazingly supportive friends

-My job, and the sunny dispositions of my coworkers

-Salads

-Daiya Cheese

-The work-out room at work

-Afternoon naps followed by hot chocolate and a quick walk

The Dainty Squid

-Randomly catching a movie for free last night

-Making it to work on time

-New Opportunities

And, for your viewing pleasure, I most humbly present a turtle ballerina, garnished with pond flora:

Easter Sunday

Typically family gatherings overwhelm me, but this year’s Easter celebration was calm, just my immediate family (plus spouses and kids, since we are of that age now) and the grandparents. Kevin and I played bunny with Gramps and hid all the eggs, which the 5- and 9-year olds later deemed to be too easy to find. “The Easter Bunny didn’t do a very good job,” said Rosie in her little lispy voice, to which I responded “Well, it was my first time!” before somebody reminded me that we were supposed to pretend it was the actual Easter Bunny.

Oops. I am not accustomed to lying to children.

Still, it was a nice day. No TV, lots of sunshine, relaxing on the back patio. Mom made some killer vegan mac-n-cheese, which should be making an appearance here shortly. Natalie made asparagus, which is a very Easter vegetable, though I forget exactly why.

And there was no TV, which is nice, and the kids were well-behaved. Later, I had a nap and then went for a long walk through town with Stephanie E. and her boyfriend, to go see the weekly free showing of Mad Men at Brewvies. On the way we saw this:

Then after Mad Men we stayed in the theater, just to see what came on next, and it was THIS.

It was a good Easter.

My Newest Thing

…is keeping secrets.

Not for secrecy’s, sake, but for some semblance of self-preservation, a recognition of self worth, that myself and my thoughts, plans and ideas, are to some degree sacred. Not meant to be shared so openly with just whomever.

So where I used to consult everyone I knew about Big Decisions to be made, now I just ask one or two close friends, or I just figure it out myself. Where I used to broadcast my Life Plans and Big Ideas, now I keep them to myself, because I am my own best friend, and I love sharing secrets with just me.

In other news: Kevin moved home from Spain. Last Wednesday. I made him salmon with an orange zest/brown sugar/soy sauce rub, wild rice with shiitake mushrooms, and collard greens cooked with mustard and topped with toasted sesame seeds.

So that’s two secrets right there–Kevin’s back and I can cook.

Spring Cleaning

…means books off the shelves!

I washed the window sills, Friends. And found 4 ladybugs in the process, which I added to my collection:

My apartment has a minor ladybug infestation. It charms me to no end.

*       *       *

Happy weekend!

Big Sis, Little Sis

~OR~

Rosie Has Two Mommies

(and so do I)

Saturday night my little sister Rosie slept over. She is five years old, and sometimes I’m hesitant to explain our relationship. Technically, she is my mother’s lesbian lover’s daughter. So…no, we’re not related by blood. But what does that even matter? I don’t call Beth my mother’s lover, anyway. I just call her Beth, and I refer to her as my step-mom. Which…well, admittedly that confuses people.

Though, interestingly enough, living in Utah means that I can be a 26-year-old with a 5-year-old sister, and most people don’t bat a lash. We’re professional reproducers here, folks.

But…living in Utah also means that I’ve never been too jazzed to reveal my personal family information to strangers. Because not only am I a non-Mormon (born and raised), I’m a non-Mormon raised by a lesbian and a Jew. Try telling THAT to your friend’s mom while she’s carpooling you to soccer practice!

But I do believe in honesty, Friends. It’s just that I also believe in, you know, protecting what’s mine. So sometimes there’s internal conflict.

But…honestly? Mostly there is little conflict. Mostly there is watching Tangled and eating home-made popcorn with little Rose, who decides that she DOES like my special seasoning (Earth Balance butter + salt/nutritional yeast/Mrs. Dash) and also that she should probably just tell me the entire plot of the movie before-hand. Just in case I might get scared.

Then there is giggling in bed, and going to sleep at 9:30, and then waking up at 7:30. There is trying to play Simpsons Clue at a coffee shop, where we both drink hot chocolate and eat bagels. By then it is only 10 or so, so we decide to go bowling. Because Rosie’s never been, and because…why not?

Because that’s what sisters do–they hang out, watch movies, have sleepovers, go to cafes, and try new things together.

And that’s the honest truth.

 

If You Can’t Be With the One You Love…

…Love the One You’re With

I have a very rainbow-centric job…

…and I kinda dig it.

Truth Time: remember when I was not digging it? And not dealing well? (Here ‘s a refresher. Also here.)

And, really, I was pretty all over the place with most things. Emotionally.  Some days my jobs were okay, some days I liked my friends, some days I felt like MAYBE I’d made the right choice…but other days I was just hanging in there. Like a cat on a tree branch.

But…then I decided not to make any more plans. Because making plans was stressing me out. See, making plans meant making A DECISION, which naturally involved re-assessing all past decisions, in an effort not to eff everything up again. But it also meant trying to figure out the future, and what I might want a month or a year from now.

And I just don’t know that, Friends. I just don’t know.

*       *       *

So. No more plans. Just here. Just this. Some other quote from Rent…

Seriously, though, letting go of the past AND the future has done wonders. Guess what? My jobs are awesome. I love kids. Even when they’re little shits. Okay, especially when they’re little shits. They’re just so bad ass. Look at what my kiddos did for the storytime craft last night:

A metaphor:

You know how some times everything sucks and your friends are flaky and your family doesn’t understand you and your job is killing your soul and you don’t want to do anything and nothing is ever going to get better? But then really it turns out you just needed to eat?

I guess I just “needed to eat.”

Savor

I had to text my Eric friend the other morning to ask him, “…where did all of this self-love come from? Im enjoying it, but i also find myself asking ‘why now?’ ”

Because I don’t fully understand it, Friends. Something I’ve been striving for for so long–a sense of grace, of calm and peace and joy–is suddenly within my grasp. All I had to do was let go.

More and more I spend my time as I please, and every moment–every movement–seems delicate and sweet. Like making lists, reading in bed right when I wake up, tidying the apartment, and baking banana bread.

It was a rare slow morning, a “day off” I believe it’s called, though it’s been so long, who can remember? So I blissed out, enjoyed every aspect of it. The soft sunlight shining in through the kitchen window, circles of brown sugar and white flower. Soothing stirring and pouring motions. Listening to the Temptations and wearing a fancy apron. All of it.

And so maybe you folks will not be as into these photos as I was, but I seriously appreciated every step in the process, every angle and curve. Therefore, I documented:

I like the way everything comes together with baking. You measure, mix, and it’s like magic, the way it turns into something more than the sum of the parts. Except when its a disaster. Then I throw a tantrum. But not this day. This day I had a morning to myself, a spot of sunlight to dance in, and a delicious chocolate chip banana bread muffin.

…which I could only eat half of. So then I stopped. Just like I stopped going to CrossFit, for the time being, because I prefer running and yoga to weight training.

I think this is what they call “listening to your body and your self,” which is also a novel approach for me. Because a easy, peaceful morning can just as easily slide into a 48-hour work week, leaving me with an eye twitch and a need to seriously re-asses my priorities.

Because lately little sarah Big World Traveler would like nothing more than to settle down for a minute, commit to the plans I’ve made for right here, right now. Work less, relax more. Then maybe more mornings could be filled with baking, blogging, and self love.

As opposed to, you know, waking up at 5:30 and working until 9pm. I don’t want that anymore. I want to savor the moment.