Apr 14, 2014

on top of it

To start, I feel like a round of thanks and apologies are in order.

I've been quite neglectful of this blog lately, and while I don't feel like I need to apologize for that per se, I do want to apologize for taking so long to reply to your comments and emails!

And then, thank you.  Thank you for all of your sweet wishes for Gidget, your "Happy Birthdays" for Riley and for just sticking with me in general.  Over the past year of this blog's life (ah, I missed my first blogaversary!)  I have come to realize that those of you out there reading this little blog are some of the kindest, coolest people around.  I really mean it.  And I hope you know that I truly appreciate you reading and leaving your thoughtful words, even if it takes me weeks to respond.

When we were traveling around on the water, it was easy to publish new content everyday.  I was excited about what I was doing and seeing, and I wanted to remember it and I wanted to share it.  So now, I'm feeling a little like a fish out of water. (haha! totally proud of that one.)  It's funny because, the truth is, I am still completely excited about life.  I never really felt those blues that sometimes happen when a big life event ends.  But still, the transition's been a little strange.  It's been a little over a month since we've been back, which seems just long enough to start thinking, "did that really even happen?"  I mean, there's tangible and intangible proof that it did, but still.  And now, the task is to try and take the pieces of my life pre-adventure, and the experiences of the adventure, and the pieces of my life that have been forever altered by the adventure, and fit them into a new equation that works. "Now what?" has become a daily question.  I'm getting there, I think, it's just taking a little while.

All that to say, it's been a little quiet here while I figure it all out.  This blog existed before we even set sail, so I know it can exist after, but really, how do you follow that?  I feel like a blog, when it's at it's very best, should paint a picture, a reflection, of it's author.  And since I'm still struggling to see what that pictures looks like, what it should and could look like, I'm still struggling to find the right words, too.  But it's okay, because I mean that in the best, most optimistic sense.  Because so far, things are looking pretty good.

When you have an opportunity to grow and change from an amazing experience, the fresh start that you're presented with afterwards seems almost limitless.  There are almost too many colors on my palette, however will I choose?

In some ways, our trip felt like a sort of escape from reality.  But in others, it was like going back to school.  We saw, we experienced, we learned.  We pushed ourselves outside of our comfort zones.  And now that we've graduated, the real test is in what we do with it all.  How will we (I) take the experience and allow it to affect every aspect of my "real" life.  Now that I know that I am capable of things I never even imagined, what am I going to do about it?  You can't just let these sorts of things go to waste, you know.

So, that's where I'm at.  And where this blog is at.  We're works in progress.

In the meantime, Riley and I have been taking every opportunity to explore the city of Roanoke with fresh, city-dweller eyes, and I am absolutely loving it.  Maybe it takes leaving an area, and then coming back into the heart of it to really appreciate it.  I also feel like the city is making a lot of exciting improvements and I'm glad to be seeing them firsthand and I'm looking forward to sharing more of it with you, too.

So, in conclusion to this long winded, rambling, and analogy laden blog post, here we are.  This is my new world, and this is what it feels like to be on top of it.  

Apr 7, 2014

thanksgiving is always a good idea

Since we were just talking about New Year's the other day, it's only fitting that we talk about Thanksgiving today… right?

Riley and I actually had a pretty good Thanksgiving on the boat last fall, but it still wasn't quite the same not being able to celebrate with our families.  In fact, the first thing that I did when I pulled my pathetic, burnt pumpkin pie out of our tiny boat oven on that Thanksgiving day was text my mom and sister, "can we have Thanksgiving dinner when we get back?"  Their answer was a resounding "yes!"

We had a few family birthdays to celebrate first, but fortunately we were able to squeeze in a little Thanksgiving celebration before Easter.  There's just something about all of the cooking, the time spent around the table together, talking and eating comfort food, that even the best case scenario boat Thanksgiving just couldn't live up to.  

In the spirit of the pretend season, I asked everyone what they have to be thankful for since (the real) Thanksgiving Day passed.  My favorite part?  How quickly everyone was able to think of their answer.  It is truly amazing how much we have to be thankful for. 

I am so thankful for the opportunity to have the sailing adventure that we did, that we returned home in one piece, that we were able to find a place to live that we love so quickly, and for the good job that Riley had to return home to.  I am thankful for time spent with family, celebrating holidays, no matter how belated they may be.

What about you?  What do you have to be thankful for since Thanksgiving?

Apr 3, 2014

here's to (belated) new year's resolutions

Now that Riley and I are living in the city, I get a kick out of saying, "oh, we're spending the weekend in the country…" or something of that nature.  It makes visiting family sound like even more of a luxury than it already is.  Wandering around my parents' place the other day, I got to fully appreciate the signs of spring and the beautiful weather that accompanies it.  It got me thinking about New Year's resolutions.

I kind of missed the boat (ha!) on that front this year, mainly because we spent New Year's just trying to survive Key West.  In all honesty, I intentionally gave myself a pass on making any resolutions anyway.  Living on a boat seemed like a pretty good excuse.  I wasn't going to commit to a new exercise routine, because when I wasn't walking two miles to the grocery store and back, I really was quite content to… sit around.  I wasn't going to commit to healthier eating, because really, we were just going to eat whatever was easy to come by and even easier to prepare.  I wasn't going to start new hobbies, or save more money, I was just going to simply do the best with what I had to work with.  I suppose the closest I came to making a resolution on New Year's was to attempt to do something new everyday.  And given our situation, I think I did a pretty good job with that one.

In anticipation of moving back on land however, I did start to make myself a list of future resolutions.  You know, it's kind of like the dieter that says, "I'll start my diet after Thanksgiving. And Christmas. And New Year's."  My intentions were purely good, though.  Well, they were going to be, anyway.

So, now that we're somewhat settled, it's spring, the flowers are blooming, and the air is fresh, and it seems like a pretty good time to dust off those New Year's resolutions.  Nothing too dramatic, of course, I really just want to focus on intentional living.  I want to make conscious choices about the foods we're eating, the exercise I'm getting, and the activities I'm spending my time and money on.  I want to find new and exciting experiences right outside my own door. 

lastly, this.  Just because I think it's hilarious.  You get 'im girl.

If our experience on the boat had to come to an end, at least we timed it pretty well.  There is nothing quite like the transition into spring to lift sprits, renew hope, and inspire change.  It's the perfect time for a fresh start.  In our case, quite literally.  Does it feel that way for you too, though?  How are your New Year's resolutions going, anyway?  Do they need to be dusted off?  What are the things that you want to focus on this Spring?  Or this year?  I'd love to hear and be inspired by some of your own resolutions!

(Also, by the way, Riley thanks you for all of the birthday wishes!  And as far as Gidget is concerned, it looks like we may be starting her on some anti-seizure medication.  She was kind of diagnosed with epilepsy by process of elimination.  Thank you again for all of your sweet words and prayers!)
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