Thursday, February 22, 2018

days off, DIY and upcoming plans

Solitude is sometimes how I choose to spend my days off.  I originally had a lunch scheduled with a good friend of mine.  Our plan was to check out a new spot in Denver that I have heard mixed reviews of. I was determined to experience it for myself.  I woke up and had a touch of a tickle at the back of my throat.  I thought I could slam some apple cider vinegar to power through it or hydrate on water.  I did consider postponing the lunch, too.
While planning out my morning, I looked up how to deal with a slow drain in the shower.  I have been trying to pour toxic chemicals down it which does help and hinder the entire process.  Releases toxins that I do not need to be exposed to and can harm the pipes I know.  I looked up natural ways to tackle this issue and found some interesting suggestions.  Using a wire hanger.  Mixing baking soda and vinegar which one website proposed and another said absolutely not.  I saw hot water suggestions, salt and was about to embark on one of the methods when I remembered that I had poured something in it last night.  I went to flush the liquids out and saw that the drain was no longer a moat.  Seriously.  In the last month, I have been bathing in my shower and waiting for the water to minimize.  It's been annoying!  And I think about how much soap and hair have been blocking the drain.
After figuring out the shower, I did a quick maintenance of the bathroom and kitchen sink.  I really have no interest in calling a plumber or wading through water to conclude my shower.  Around this time, I received a text from my lunch date asking to postpone our lunch. Work needed her attention and I was more than happy to oblige.  I could agree to postponing without actually admitting I, too, wanted a rain check.
I broke my belt buckle yesterday.  And, this is no ordinary belt.  I have had it for twelve years and hope to get it repaired.  It is now a matter of where to take it.  A co-worker suggested a cobbler.  I tried to arrange an appointment but the cobbler I called said if it was the buckle they would not be able to help me.  If I had a problem with the leather, yes, they could do something.  I thought about walking to cherry creek to see a shoe and tailor as well as check out a few consignment shops.  I do need a belt for work.  I rigged a mock belt last night but it was not that fashionable or practical.  It was pretty awful and lame!
Originally, downtown seemed like a viable option--lunch date, available cobblers, I could pick up some money from work and do a later yoga class.  When lunch was no longer an option, I reconsidered my location options.  I would prefer to go to cherry creek and consignment shop, see a tailor and maybe push my yoga class til 5.  I kept going back and forth with how to utilize my time.  In the end, I chose to go to a noon yoga class and head to cherry creek afterwards.  I could do another load of laundry, too.  Around 2 p.m. the weather changed.  Cooler, a little windy and no more sun.  I knew I had made the right decision to wait to go anywhere.  I remained indoors and have been binge watching shows in the background while making plans.  I made dinner and will go to bed early.  I believe it is in my best interest.  I can shake the tickle at the back of my throat and get a good night of sleep.  My laundry is done for the week and tomorrow, I will teach a new student.  I think Alexis is more of a barterer.  I see a bottle of wine in my future.  And unless it snows overnight and into tomorrow, I arranged a body scrub/massage session at the Korean spa in southeast Denver. I am excited to detox in the saunas and relax.  Body maintenance is essential and I intend to check out this day spa monthly.
I do have plans for tomorrow and the upcoming week.  Soon, I will be flying out to Nashville and hopefully reconnecting with friends from Denver and Santa Fe.  Music, alone, will entice me and don't get me started on the food factor.  I am super excited for this adventure!

cold days and upcoming plans

I think it is 9 degrees again.  9 degrees.  So cold.
I walked to work since I am stubborn and I do enjoy the forty minutes of freedom.  I can listen to music, call friends, listen to podcasts.  It is me time while maneuvering traffic and trying to not be hit.  Yesterday, thankfully, the roads were not overwhelmed with people in a hurry.  Instead, they were cautious and kind, almost.  I made it to work and had little feeling in my fingers and toes.  During my lunch break, the sun was shining and it didn't seem as bad.  I had pho for lunch which was an excellent choice.  Brothy, hearty and delicious.  On my return to work, I experienced the cold again.  Yuck!  No sun and the wind and cold was fierce. Today, I am on the fence with whether I want to walk to work.  I could definitely stay warm inside a car, lol.
Life is grand.  I have been making more plans on Nashville and Puerto Rico.  And then there will be D.C. mid June.  I met a bartender from the Hill who may relocate to Denver by June.  However, she had some great suggestions on places to check out while in the city.  It is on my trip radar and I will make it happen.  Mostly to be supportive of Jennifer and see friends from high school.  It is interesting to see how and where everyone has ended up.  One of the guys was a single dad for fourteen years and then met a lady and now has two small daughters in addition to his son that is graduating from high school this year.  Very interesting and different path than the one I chose.  Or Jennifer.  She is uprooting her life and hiking the AT beginning in March.  It is something that she decided to do and is doing it.  I love her tenacity and fierceness in choosing an unconventional path.
I believe a trip to Phoenix is in order this year as well.  I miss the yoga factor.  Desperately.  I am curious as to what they are currently doing and want to experience it.  There are new restaurants that Jan swears are incredible and of course, I love the consignment shopping.  I could definitely enjoy shopping while in the city.  See Cody, hike Echo and do yoga.  Sounds fantastic.
In other news, I wish I had coffee creamer.  I wish it would magically appear in my refrigerator.  I'm too lazy to actually scrape my car off and drive six blocks to Sprouts.  Better yet, I could walk two or three blocks to the convenience store.  I am uninspired.  I probably should have dealt with this the other day when I was out and about instead of avoiding the responsibility.  No one is delivering me coffee creamer unless I pay them.
I have the next few days off.  I will be running errands, doing laundry, seeing my trainer and teaching yoga.  I am excited to read a book perhaps or do something with meaning.  Utilize my days off and prepare for my next venture.

Tuesday, February 20, 2018

how the weather alters plans

Get outside....the sun is shining.  Beautiful day today.  Yesterday, I thought about driving downtown and parking as it is free to park on holidays.  I confirmed that it was, in fact, considered a holiday and intended to go to yoga and drive to work.  I woke up and it was snowing which altered my plans.  I had no interest in driving and believed that I would be able to walk home.  All of my plans were changed due to the weather.  It was too cold to walk home and the snow deterred my desire to park downtown.
My uber ride both ways was interesting.  The first driver picked me and headed downtown.  She was following her gps and some of the decisions I did not agree with.  I tend to avoid crossing Colfax/14th/17th Sts. if there is not a stoplight.  Especially when you factor in snow.  However, she felt confident to follow the prescribed directions and was about to cross 17th when a car came at us.  In an attempt to not hit the car she short stopped and almost slid into a parked car.  A little challenging and scary.  She managed to avoid the crash and deliver us downtown.  I opted to get out a few blocks early instead of forcing her to criss cross downtown making stops.
My ride out of downtown was interesting, too.  It took a minute to pick up our other rider and when we did he was unable to pinpoint where he was.  He kept repeating the intersection.  The driver asked if he was on the right or left side of the street.  Seems easy to figure out but this guy was unable.  I was getting irritated as I was ready to be home and out of the cold/snow.  I interjected and asked if he was in front of the light rail stop, starbuck's or the jamba juice.  Finally, that clicked and we coaxed him to the car.  He jumps in and it's clear he has had a few adult beverages. He talked, nonstop, with a ton of obscenities.  The driver encouraged this by asking more and more questions of his traveling to Europe.  I get that and then was annoyed with the language.  And, no, I am not a prude and I am around colorful language frequently.  It just went on too long and I was ready to be alone.
My plan was to teach a new student but got postponed due to when I arrived home.  I think it was smarter.  Instead, I practiced the beginning of the ashtanga primary series on my own.  As much as I want to expand my teaching, sometimes, it is in my best interest to focus on my own practice.  Mostly, the weather and vibe of last night discouraged me from wanting people over in my space.  Then, I watched a colossal smack down in basketball.  My team looks dominant and ready.  Out of nowhere there is a glimmer of hope and gelling of the team.  I hope they are able to go far in the tournament.  I heard a commentator compare them to the braves last night and I had to chuckle.  Always winning their conference and then falling in the playoffs.
I might walk to work today.  I am still on the fence.  It looks frigid outside although the sun is shining.  I have rearranged some teaching this week and will make it happen.  I am sure I will walk today.  As noted in the beginning of the post, I should get outside.  It's gorgeous!
Next week, Nashville.  It seems that I was just putting the idea together and hoping to sell it.  Originally, we thought we would head to Charleston.  I know it is a foodie driven southern city.  Perhaps another time to check it out.  The appeal of music and food drew my attention to Nashville.  Plus, more and more people kept talking about it and how fantastic of a city it is.  I will find out next week.
Go outside.  Do something different.  Be present now!

Sunday, February 18, 2018

small things that make me happy and other reflections

Yum....I love noodle soup and Pho.  I found this particular place while on my last trip to Las Vegas.  CafĂ© Arawan was delicious.  I loved the tuna appetizer, garlic short ribs and of course, the meat ball soup. Delicious!
I try to enjoy Pho every other week.  I am blessed to have a mid shift early in the week.  Translation, I arrive at 11 and am finished by 1/1:30 depending on service.  I have a break until 3:30 and so I find myself exploring downtown restaurants.  Sometimes, I go high end.  I like to check out what other places are doing.  And, honestly, I love fish sandwiches.  They are easily found at steakhouses and restaurants in hotels in downtown.  Other times, I check out Korean BBQ  or Pho.  I love learning how to maneuver chop sticks more handily.  It has been an embarrassing illustration for many, many years.  I think my trip to Southeast Asia helped me become a more adept chop stick handler.  
It's the small things that make me happy.  Peppermint oil, sunflowers, the moon, taking time to write a letter.  I sat down and knocked out three letters this afternoon.  I have all of this stationary and want to use it. I also want to reach out to friends and family in an old fashioned way. 
More and more, I see, how we are disconnected from human contact.  Our interactions are mostly limited to likes, swipes and commentary on social media.  To actually sit across from someone and have a conversation is unique.  Or, to take the time to write a letter, put a stamp on it and mail it is unheard of.  I remember while in Colombia they do not have stamps readily available.  I was looked at as if I was cross eyed or better yet, had two heads, when I made this inquiry.  I love sending post cards to friends and family when I am abroad.  It is a dialogue that you can always look back on.  A placement in time.  
Jenn found a great sushi spot in Denver.  Unfortunately, they are not open on Tuesdays which sort of crashes my Tuesday exploration of food tour.  Of course, I can go on other days. I sampled some of their food and would love to check out their ramen and poke bowls.  I am getting more excited about the upcoming trip to Nashville.  I arranged a reflexology appointment and looked at what else is available nearby.  The Parthenon, the Gulch and parts of downtown.  I know there will be an extended walk somewhere in our tour.  I typically get us lost in whatever city we are visiting.  It is a strength of mine, lol....
This upcoming week, I pledge to do something different.  Maybe walk home, teach a new student, make a contribution to one of the charities I support.  Buy flowers. Focus on the positive and continue to be healthy.  Life is grand.  And, for me, it all begins with the small things--the sun, the moon, a scent, an essence, a letter and food.  There is always that!

Resolutions--are you holding true to them?

Mid February...are you still committed to your resolutions?
This is a question that I decided to consider as it is almost March.  Am I still trying to be kind?  Compassionate?  And spreading joy as opposed to buying into fear?  It is difficult as I am reminded, daily, of all of the inequalities in our world.  Or the latest shooting that has occurred.  Initially, I did not hear about it.  I try to avoid listening to the news and so I was unaware of the horrors of the Florida shooting until I went to the athletic club to utilize their amenities.  Then, I watched a recap of it and was horrified just listening to what happened.  Just hearing the succession of shots.
I don't know what the answer is to stopping this and am not here to give my two cents.  It is and continues to be tragic and heart breaking.  I remember being in school when they were considering metal detectors and implications of what that would create.  Would it be a safer environment or were we transcending into a city type of school?  That was always a fear in our town which seems ridiculous now and should have then.  I prefer living in cities.
Regardless, I am determined to be kind and remind my sister how important education is.  I have a niece who is in kindergarten.  She is starting out in the system and I want her to be safe and aware.  I want her to learn multiple languages, go dancing, want to travel, explore the world and anything that she is interested in.  I want her to find her calling and enjoy school.  I want her to remain innocent for as long as she can.  Enjoy childhood.  Why be in a rush to be responsible?  I thought I wanted to be an adult.  And, now, I enjoy days of no responsibility or thinking about what I should be doing.  How I can hustle more to maximize my profit.  I have been taking more days off since I feel like I should.  It is more of taking care of me and my well being if that makes sense.  And it full circle returns to kindness, being kind, spreading joy.
I have more opportunities to teach and I love it.  I believe I want more of that in my life.  I know that I do.  It is fulfilling and creative.  I went to a class the other day and truly enjoyed the ending sequence.  I liked how the teacher combined bridge, boat and vinyasa to create a heart pumping sequence.  Sort of  like an altered burpee with the desired effects.  I could have done more of those; although, I was in the minority.  I looked around the class and the majority of the people were finding child's pose instead of finishing the proposed sequence.  I loved it!
I think I will check out a class this morning.  There was an opportunity to attend a donation based series of classes today at my gym.  An instructor's child has a rare form of brain cancer and the community is hoping to help one of their own. I think it is admirable of them and hope it is successful.  A great way to be kind, supportive and a family.
I made some reservations in Nashville for dinner.  I have left Thursday open to explore the local food scene--food trucks, bbq, fried chicken.  And finally think I found reflexology in a studio as opposed to a spa environment.  It seems like the spa environment is more about the ambiance and less about the services provided.  We shall see.
I will say this about being involved and how to make changes.  Get involved.  Be kind and be part of the solution as opposed to the problem.  And education is always essential.  Educate yourself!

Sunday, February 11, 2018

Driving in the snow and gratitude

It is Sunday.  I spent the last few days in New Mexico and it was lovely.  My friends were upset about the lack of winter and snow.  I was thankful to be driving down south with little resistance due to weather conditions.  How that changed yesterday.  I thought it was clear both directions and saw there was a chance of snow in Denver Saturday morning.  Chance didn't scare me or set me on edge.  I left Santa Fe early to ensure that I would avoid a jam up on Monument Hill.  I had two hours of easy breezy driving.  As I approached Raton Pass I could see more fog in the area.  I dreaded driving over the Pass with limited visibility.  Recently, I drove down to Santa Fe and had a treacherous drive over the pass due to fog.  It was nuts and I hated every minute of it.
So, there was a foreboding of what I was driving towards.  I made it to Trinidad and a brief reprieve of sunshine.  No more fog which was pleasant.  I headed towards Canon City and looked at when Opie's opened.  I could stop for some green chile before heading north.  Unfortunately, they open at 11 and I was about an hour ahead of their time table.  At this point, the weather took a deliberate turn for the worse.  Misting snow and some traction on the roads as I encountered Pueblo.  It only got worse as I approached the Springs.  My rear window was smeared with some debris which was also inhibiting my visibility.  I continued north, hoping, to make it home safe.  I thought about where I could stop for take-out before heading to work.  I was informed that there was a bar meeting at 2 pm which I would be required to attend.
I focused on my driving and saw an increase in traffic.  I left the Springs and figured the last 15 miles to Denver would be the worst.  I stopped in Castle Rock to wipe the back window and was relieved that I would be able to see.  What a difference that makes, lol.  There was more snow on the ground and I was getting a little more anxious. I despise driving in the snow.  I made it to the outskirts of Denver and experienced a complete slow down.   We were inching along and I was trying to make it to Hampden.  From there, I could take Monaco to 13th, stop for take-out at a casual eatery and eventually drive home with time to spare.  My grand plans of feeding myself before hopping into an uber to work.  It took much longer to make the remainder of the trip.  I sat at a stoplight on Monaco for five light cycles.  I seriously thought about getting out of my car and figuring out why the cars in the front were unwilling to accelerate and move.  It was long, tedious and annoying.  As noted, I do not enjoy driving in the snow.  I thought about my tires and how I would react if something did happen.  At one point on 1-25 north, I kept flashing my viper fluid to clear the snow and was realizing that I couldn't see due to the incoming fluid and trying to stop before traffic halted.  It was terrifying!
I did make it home.  I avoided the additional stop to buy take-out.  I didn't have time and I had little interest in prolonging my way home.  I unpacked my car, changed my shoes, made scrambled eggs and saw the travesty of a basketball game before hiring a car.  I made it to work for the meeting with 10 minutes to spare.  I was thankful.
I am thankful.  Today is a new day. I might go to a barre class or donation yoga later.  I am uncertain.  I am happy for the opportunity of what today brings.  I am happy for the possibility of teaching more yoga and will let go the need to be driven to always work.  It is okay to rest, reflect, rejuvenate.
And so grateful that I made it home unscathed.  My friend, Melody, lamented the lack of winter in Santa Fe.  She was tired of the lame season this year.  If only she could have encountered the snow in Denver.
I have chosen to skip the goat yoga in Nashville.  After much consideration, I don't think it is my jam.  It won't be challenging.  It's more about comfort and a different aspect of yoga.  I feel that I will need to detox more than be coddled.  I think I can sell it to my friends too.  I know they have hot yoga amongst other disciplines there.  In two weeks, I will be exploring Music City.  I cannot wait!

Saturday, February 3, 2018

goals of myself and others

Ground hog Day.  Shout out to my friend Jennifer who is celebrating her birthday and preparing for her adventure on the AT.  Yep, she will be hiking the Appalachian trail beginning in March.  I imagine that she is downsizing, organizing and prepping for her upcoming journey.  If it were me, I would be mentally preparing for the alone time and detaching from all of the chatter/distraction that I surround myself with.  Not having my phone would be a challenge.  Although, ten years ago, it would have been a breeze.  Seriously.  I used to despise the thought of having a cell phone.   Of being available at any hour of the day. Stubbornly, I chose to not have one.  I had an answering machine and felt that was good enough.
Now, I wake up and almost always check my phone when I wake. To check the time.  To see my note from the universe (yes, I like and receiving inspirational messages.)  To perhaps, sleep in and hit snooze.  I typically then check messages, emails, social media.  It is a time suck!  And one that I rely on.  It would be nice to disengage and fully be present in my surroundings.  I admire Jennifer for choosing to accomplish this goal.  I will be meeting up with her in D.C. some time in June to check in and see what she has experienced.  And, explore the Capitol and see Megan, aka Sipper.  It will be a fantastic time.
It's also Finn's second birthday.  Lindsay is in Nicaragua on a coffee exploring adventure with her job.  She returns tomorrow and I know will spend time with her son/family then.  I hope to meet up with her, too.  See the littles and have a home cooked dinner.  I am in.
Today, I saw the trainer and afterwards had a luxurious lunch.  I was ready and hope to continue to do this.  I met Jenn at a French place.  Mussels, French fries and Chilean sea bass.  Personally, I would have preferred the salmon blt but she wasn't too interested.  The mussels and sea bass were great.  We opted to sit bar side in spite of the fact that there wasn't too much room.  Four seats with decorative crap, a cell phone and sunglasses.  We were seated at the chef bar which can always be a treat.  Being entertained by the chef is always fun and this did not disappoint.
Afterwards, I walked home and thought of what it is I would like to pursue.  I considered positive attributes of my life and how I get spun out on negative things.  Ultimately, I can only change myself.  I can only improve my present and that is what I intend to do.
More yoga.  More travel.  More work.
2018 I hustle.  Maybe I will get a shirt to reflect it.  I like it.  I like the connection friendly aspect of it.  My little sister sent me a shirt that said bridesmaid.  I was unable to attend her party but I did make it to the wedding and rehearsal dinner.  They sent me a shirt about two weeks afterwards.  I think  I can work it into my rotation of workout shirts.   Seems suitable.
I reconnected with an old friend from Phoenix.  He messaged me early this morning. I had woke up and was unable to get back to sleep.  Tyler is in Las Vegas, visiting, and saw that I was active on social media.  We exchanged some messages and from this I learned that he is currently in Lake Havasu, AZ, living and enjoying life.  He might check out Denver to see me and my Mini.  We all worked together at a brewery in its infant stages.  I try to remain in contact with people in my life.  I like catching up and seeing what they are doing now.  Of course, I believe, it would be easier to see him if he were in Phoenix.  There really isn't a reason to head to Lake Havasu in the foreseeable future.  I have been, once, when I was in college.  So, in order to catch up in person, he might have to come up to Denver, lol.
I am off to teach, iron and enjoy a Saturday.  Cheers!