100 Things I Love Part 5: 81-100

Happy New Year! I wish you all the best in 2017. I am feeling a lot of positivity about this coming year and am looking forward to seeing what it brings. In the meantime, I bring you the last installment of my little self-care project. 100 Things I Love, has been really uplifting, and I have found that I have generally been able to keep a more positive attitude versus before. I am calling this self-care project a success!

  1. Watching my friends’ and my sisters’ kids grow up
  2. A freshly tidied space
  3. Scented candles that smell like baked goods
  4. Breakfast
  5. Scarves – I hate having a cold neck!
  6. A nice hot bath
  7. That I can take medication to help manage my depression
  8. Super hero movies
  9. My antique desk
  10. Being able to play PC games again (It’s been years.)
  11. Organizing my clutter
  12. Coming home after time away
  13. Sleeping in my bed after I’ve been away for a night or two – it really feels amazing
  14. Being able to drink tea from a travel mug!
  15. A sense of accomplishment at the end of the work day
  16. Writing when I can; when I feel inspired (however rare it may be)
  17. Curling up in bed right before I fall asleep when I am good and tired
  18. Fresh starts
  19. The amazing friends I have in my life
  20. Coming up with this list

And there you have it. 100 things I love, complete.

2016 was a heck of a year. There were a lot of changes, and a lot of things that stayed the same. I started a new job, and as a result I made an amazing new friend. The new job also resulted in working at the first job I’ve ever felt appreciated and respected. She is truly wonderful. I finally started loving living alone, and that has resulted in being able to focus on things I wasn’t able to before. My best friend moved across the country. I am thankful however, that we are able to keep in touch thanks to Apple! I had a health scare with Tobi, but we weathered it and she is healthy now, aside from the continuous issues she has had to deal with for most of her life.

I have big plans for 2017 though. I plan to travel! I plan to meet people! I will be starting my house savings. I will be improving things around my apartment, a plan for which has already been set in motion. I will be taking better care of myself and my health as well. I have many goals I have set out to accomplish. I am excited for these things, and will of course be sharing what I can.

Happy New Year!

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100 Things I Love Part 4: 61-80

I know it’s been a little bit since I last published for this project. Family Christmases got in the way! I have a break from gatherings now, and thought I would continue on.

Welcome to Part 4 of the 100 Things I Love project. Reflecting over Christmas and being away from work made it a bit easier to come up with some additions for the list, which was pretty awesome.

  1. Any kind of cool nerdy coffee mug
  2. My TARDIS collection
  3. Wiggling my toes in new warm grass
  4. Sitting around the table chatting with the family after a big holiday dinner
  5. Sitting on my back patio/landing reading a book in the sun
  6. Finishing the latest project
  7. Wayne’s snickerdoodles – Gluten Free and AMAZING
  8. Quiet days to myself with no expectations
  9. Yummy-smelling candles
  10. When plans go off without a hitch
  11. Feeling prepared (this one is helpful for my anxiety too!)
  12. A glass of ice-cold water
  13. A nice, brisk walk.
  14. Great conversation
  15. Bookstores
  16. Having a library card
  17. Collecting Classics (the books, that is)
  18. Holiday leftovers
  19. Learning to manage my money effectively
  20. Treating myself from time to time (It’s just good self-care.)

I hope you had a great holiday! I did, for the most part. I find it a bit more difficult these days to really get into it as the majority of my family are adults or are nearing adulthood. There is less emphasis on the excitement of gift-giving, and more on just being with family. Don’t get me wrong, it’s really great. It’s one of my favourite parts of the season. It’s just hard to get pumped up and in the “holiday spirit” when that’s the case. I am back to work for the rest of this week, and then we are on to New Year’s Even this weekend. I have plans to go see some friends and spend the night playing board games and eating and drinking lots of wine. I am very much looking forward to it. I hope you have some exciting New Year’s Eve plans as well!

100 Things I Love Part 3: 41-60

Welcome to part three of my self care project. These are items 41-60. This bunch was quite a bit more difficult to come up with. It seems to be more difficult as I get deeper into it. The rest of these are going to be a challenge to come up with!

  1. Dark chocolate
  2. Hand dyed wool
  3. Geeky memorabilia – autographs, pop figures, art, etc.
  4. Leaving work early
  5. Owl-themed décor
  6. Travelling to new places
  7. Sleeping in
  8. Sleeping in general
  9. My comfy green wing chair (It’s vintage!)
  10. Not having to cook if I don’t want to
  11. Adult colouring books
  12. Pen pals – the old-fashioned kind!
  13. Receiving letters and packages in the mail
  14. Candy canes
  15. Wine
  16. Sleepy kid/baby snuggles (while babysitting)
  17. Tabletop game nights with friends
  18. Video gaming with friends (World of Warcraft, Path of Exile)
  19. Wrapping gifts for others at Christmas
  20. My Batman coffee mug

It should also be noted that today is my blog’s anniversary! I have been active on this blog in one way or another for five years. It feels like a real achievement!

100 Things I love Part 2: 21-40

Welcome to part two of my new self care project. These are items 21-40. This next bunch was a bit trickier to come up worth. I think this is going to get more difficult as I continue!

  1. A good movie drama
  2. Teddy bears/stuffed animals
  3. “Character” – as found in old buildings
  4. My family – even if they sometimes drive me crazy from time to time…
  5. My new computer
  6. Tea! (loose leaf)
  7. Helping friends when I can
  8. The people I work with – they are some truly great and kind people
  9. Radiator heat – so warm and cozy!
  10. The first snow of the season
  11. Not owning a car
  12. Being able to live (relatively) comfortably on my income
  13. Comics
  14. Feeling valuable, like my work/effort is appreciated
  15. Being free to do what I want, when I want
  16. Productive days
  17. Sailor Moon
  18. Crochet
  19. Shopping for gifts (mostly for others, but sometimes for myself too)
  20. Cat snuggles

100 Things I Love Part 1: 1-20

Welcome to part one of my new self care project. These are items 1-20. These first few were pretty easy to come up with. I’m not sure if it will stay this easy!

  1. My cat Tobi
  2. My apartment
  3. Living alone
  4. Coffee
  5. Sunshine
  6. Tacos
  7. Cozy blankets
  8. Doctor Who
  9. My blog – even if I don’t post as much as I would like anymore. It’s been a 5-year labour of love so far.
  10. Playing games (both video games and board games)
  11. Books/reading
  12. Pens
  13. Tragic Toys
  14. Feminism
  15. Trying/learning new things
  16. Pizza
  17. The colour grey
  18. Sci-fi TV
  19. Stars
  20. Lilacs
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*sings* These are a few of my favourite things… *sings*

A Little Project

One can’t help but notice that people have a serious tendency to focus on negativity in everyday life. I have paid a lot of attention to this lately, mostly recognizing my own tendencies, and I decided to do a little week-long project. I’m very guilty of this, and in casual conversation it is easy to recognize when other people are as well.  To see what the difference could be, and to hopefully become more in tune with myself and potentially others, I decided that for an entire week I would keep track of all the positive or good events and happenings and put no emphasis whatsoever on the negative or bad things. I knew from the beginning this was going to be an eye-opening and interesting project.

Today marks the end of this project, and it has been VERY eye-opening. Here are the things I documented through the week:

SATURDAY

  • Celebrated my good friend’s daughters first birthday
  • Went trick-or-treating for the first time in years, and for the first time on the other side (taking kids out, and not being the trick-or-treater)
  • Spent an entire day with my friend Courtney for the first time in years

SUNDAY

  • Went and purchased my Davids Tea advent calendar with Jess (even standing in line for almost an hour was fun!)

MONDAY

  • Woke up to sunlight coming through my window
  • Cards Against Humanity arrived from Amazon in the mail

TUESDAY

  • Finished a book for the first time in a very long time
  • Had a movie night at Alice’s, complete with Speckles (her cat) snuggles
  • Tattoo is almost healed; the scabs are all gone!

WEDNESDAY

  • Did a lot of extra walking, and it felt amazing

THURSDAY

  • Helped to make a coworker’s last day in the office as pleasant as possible
  • Had sushi!

FRIDAY

  • Attended the Dirty Dancing live show at Budweiser Gardens with my mom and sister IMG_1392

SATURDAY

  • Saw my nieces and nephew
  • Played Cards Against Humanity for the first time
  • It was a very comfy day

SUNDAY

  • Celebrated my niece’s third birthday at her birthday party today (the first one I have ever attended)
  • I held my nephew Lyndon for what I am sure is the first time

Okay, so I kept track for an extra day. I think that’s a testament to how easy it became by the end. I found it very interesting how profound a difference making a minor change like I did can shift your perspective and outlook on just about everything in your life. It can happen incredibly quickly too. I found that by Tuesday, I was already generally happier and was finding it easier to dismiss the things I usually found upsetting or made my feel like the world was crashing down around me. And believe me, it happens relatively often. Putting no emphasis on those negative things and purposely focusing on the good things that were also happening at that time, made it so much easier to cope with the other things. I could almost just shrug them off.

I actually have a funny little story that can be an example to shed some light on this: I was away from home all weekend. I was out-of-town at my parents’ place because there were a few events going on and it just made more sense that way. I arrived home this evening, and pulled my dish drying mat out from under the sink because I was about to start dishes. There was a hole in my mat, and a tear on the back and little bits of the foam from the inside all over it. Clearly, I have a mouse.  IMG_1440Just over a week ago, I would have been very upset over this and probably would have started to cry; however, today I was able to laugh it off, and I even found it a bit funny. I live in a century old mansion that has been converted into apartments. You really can’t expect there to be no mice around whatsoever! I found the place where it got in, and quickly figured out there is no way for it to get out from under the sink to wreak havoc anywhere else. I will cover up the hole where it got in, and I have a solution to deter anymore mice. I will go and buy a new mat in the near future. I found myself able to laugh it off and figure out a solution to the issue in no time at all because I didn’t get worked up over the fact that it happened in the first place. It was something beyond my control and probably would have happened anyway. I couldn’t know it would happen, and it is something that is easily fixed. Something that was no big deal really wasn’t a big deal for the first time in I don’t know how long. Pretty cool, right?

This little project didn’t take more than a couple of minutes each day, and I highly recommend anyone give it a try. I’ve found it to be a very positive experience in itself!

Crochet Progress

I’ve been busy on the crochet front. I’ve now learned double crochet along with the rest of the stitches I’ve learned. My repertoire now includes chain stitch, slip stitch, single crochet, half double crochet and double crochet. Knowing these, I now know enough stitches to start working patterns.

In fact, I’ve already learned my first pattern! Last time we were out for a drinks and games night at our friends’ place, my friend Ashley taught me my very first pattern. It’s the corner-to-corner afghan, and it’s super easy to learn. It’s all chain stitch and double crochet and it didn’t take long to learn at all. After she taught me, I used the YouTube tutorial by The Crochet Crowd to clear up anything I was unsure of. It turned out to be a great pattern to start out with. It can also be easily modified to any size.

I modified the pattern the first time around to be about the size of a dishcloth. I used black yarn, and it turned out great.

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I’m not completely sure yet, but I think I just might use it for my blanket. The completed project is now on the back of my toilet looking great. I’m just about ready to start something a bit bigger.

Reading All of the Books!

To move forward with the 30 before 30 project, I realized that there are a number of things that I need to do and put in place to really make it happen. One of these things was making lists. Many lists to keep track of all the things and to figure out some starting points. The first list I tackled after the initial list of things I need to do to get started, was the list of books I own that I haven’t read yet. I had to go through my shelf and make a list of books I have yet to read. It took a bit of time as my bookshelf is quite full. My book collection used to be much larger too, believe it or not. Many of my books are in storage currently, and a couple of years back I donated some and sold many more to a used book store for credit to buy yet more books. To put it plainly, I love reading and my home would simply feel empty without the books I have in it.

I was actually surprised at how few books there are in my bookshelf that I haven’t read. There were exactly 3:

  1. The Plague Dogs – by Richard Adams
  2. The English Patient – by Michael Ondaatje
  3. The Phantom of the Opera – by Gaston Leroux

I feel like this task will be daunting, nevertheless I am going to do it! They are slightly heavier reads, being that they are mostly classics. I will come out triumphant and will be very excited to be able to cross this off my list when it is accomplished. Let’s get this project started. 🙂