Day 38 & 39: Camping & Beets

Day 38: It was turning into one of those nights. You know, the nights you don’t remember after 2 or 3 days. Daniel and I were both scrolling through our respective Facebook feeds, half watching something on TV out of the corner of our eyes. But something in me snapped and I thought to myself, “let’s make this night special.” So to the kitchen I went, because, yes, most of my attempts to manipulate emotion start in the kitchen. I made popcorn, quesadillas, and homemade ice cream. They were all delicious. And I went to my old standby, the mattress on the living room floor. You must undersand, in our living room we have a very comfortable recliner, for one, and a semi-comfortable futon for two. But when a mattress is on the floor, we can both be comfortable and together. And after a fun movie night, we got to sleep right there, in our bed, in the living room, on the floor. Sometimes something like camping in your own living room can feel adventurous, even as an adult. 

When I was a kid, I remember that I was only ever allowed to sleep in the living room on Saturday nights. I’m not really sure why, especially considering I was homeschooled. But a lot of special things happened on Saturday nights. Sleeping in the living room, eating popcorn and grilled cheese sandwiches, family movie night, etc. The great thing about those sort of traditions is that even as an adult the emotion of excitement and adventure can stick with you even at an age where it wouldn’t normally be exciting any more. I love how our brains work! 
Day 39: Dying your hair a redish tint with beets does work, albeit VERY subtly. 

Day 36: Useful pain

A few days ago, as I was scrapping ice off my windshield (yes, it’s that time of year once again), in my adorable boots, I rolled my ankle. I’ve had much worse but usually when doing something that deserves it. I’ll heal, so there’s no need to worry. No bruising, no swelling, nothing to prove my pain. I know this injury well enough to know that it doesn’t need to stay still. What it really needs is gentle stretching. This sucks though because it hurts. I remember the same paradox after a set of surgeries, screaming in tears to walk 3 steps to the chair because I needed to move to recover. 

Sometimes what’s best for us is going to be a bit painful. I would prefer this lesson not be true, but unfortunately it is. You may not know this, but the same applies in marriage. It’s sometimes painful to talk out an argument, but getting the “blood” flowing to bring healing. Something to think about next time you feel those subtle twinges of pain begin to appear. 

Day 34: Read

I’ve seen plenty of sources citing that we don’t read anymore. While I remember this everytime I read through the comments section in magazine articles (you can’t comment on the title alone people!) there is still a fair share of reading going on. We spend hours reading through our Facebook or Twitter timelines. I’ll admit, I’m not the bookworm that my sister always said I should be, and my annual book count is painfully low. So in essence I am speaking to myself here. 

What I suggest is that even as we are reading in our modern context, we are reading in extremely abbreviated forms. There is something to be said about old school reading, devoting hours of your time and imagination to a single narrative, uninterrupted by alternative external thoughts or ideas. The same goes for academic reading. Our minds process information differently when we are focused on that one subject for long periods of time. 
Old school reading will never go out of style. So, Angela, pick up a book this week and give it your all. 

Day 33: Marriage is a classroom

Today we reached a milestone. A whole year of marriage! I’m sure that now makes us experts. Tonight we sat down and chatted about what we’ve learned in this year and what our goals are for the next. As we laid out our goals and objectives I began to understand something. Marriage is a opportunity to share love, but also a classroom to grow yourself. I look forward to seeing what we make of this next year. 

Day 32: Strengths

There’s a great workshop you should check out brought to us by Oprah. Hosted by Marcus Buckingham, Take Control of your Career takes 29 women through the process of discovering themselves to better enjoy their careers. One of the concepts that he brings up is that you grow the most in your strengths. He’s written whole bestselling books on this apparently. So I probably don’t have it figured out as much as I think. But it’s amazing how true it is. When you’re good at something, enjoy doing it, are gifted to think in that way, that’s what you will grow in. Make use of who you are! There are always ways to grow who you are, always. But love who you are and use it well!