Archive | January, 2012

Standing outside the fire…

27 Jan

This post is a little heavy, but written to make you think, not ruminate.  It’s not about healthy living, but at the same time, it’s the epitome of healthy living.  If you’re having a good day, read it.  If you’re having a bad day, read it.

It is very interesting how time is completely relative to the person.

I mentioned to a coworker that I was thrilled that the week flew by, that it was Friday, and the workweek was nearly over.  She exclaimed that she couldn’t believe that it was Friday already either, and that the week went by too fast.  She said this with a little sadness.  This perplexed me for a moment, until I realized that she was over 60 and doesn’t see the end of a week in the same way that I’ve chosen to see it.  She sees each day as one to take hold of and live fully, no matter what the day entails, workday or not.

This really got me thinking.  I truly LIVE for the weekends.  I get through the workweek but I feel like I do my real living during those few hours where work isn’t an issue and I can more or less do as I please.

I need to stop this.

I need to choose to stop doing this.

I see that I need to embrace each and every day.  I need to enjoy what each day brings, even if it is 9 hours of work, a trip to the gym, tidying up and a short time of relaxing before going to bed, getting ready to do it all again the next day.

I need to stop being focused on counting the days until the weekend (0), until vacation (7), until a friends’ wedding (148).

I need to try to live in the moment, and fully live the moment.

I need to see the joy and the satisfaction in a job well done, in having the ability to go to a gym to workout, in having a husband to share the seemingly banal with and I need to be thankful that I go to bed each night with a clear expectation of waking in the morning.

The old saying goes, “Life is what happens when you’re busy trying to plan for it.”  …or something like that…   Planning is good, but not to the exclusion of living.

My Grandmother lived until she was nearly 98.  Her sisters who all lived to see adulthood, all lived until their late 90’s.  On the other side of my family, my Grandma is a very spry 82-year-old, who was married to my Grandpa for 60 years, before pancreatic cancer struck him down.  I have a full expectation of living to a ripe old age.  And I’m doing my best now to make sure that it’s a healthy one.

However, I must remember that I’m not guaranteed this time. The key is to LIVE each day you are given.

Today I’m reminded of this, as my small hometown is mourning the loss of a teenager in a horrific 4 vehicle accident at an intersection known for being dangerous.  I feel for his parents and the community.  The loss of a young life is not easily dealt with.

Todd and I have each lost a cousin to tragic car accidents while they were in their early 20’s.  I think this has changed us and the way we look at how people can be taken from us in the blink of an eye.

I think we sometimes forget that we could be the person that could be taken away.

Today I choose to fully LIVE life, and not merely be a participant.

Sincerely,

Fly

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So how’d I do with 2011???

25 Jan

Even though it’s the 25th of  January (how did that happen already?), I thought it important to review the Commitments I made last year and how I measured up, before trotting out my Commitments for this year.

I think that I was very enthusiastic about my goals last year and that they were indeed attainable, however I don’t know how much I accounted for life getting in the way and the little surprises that happen along the way.  Of course, when can you ever *really* plan for life?  Life is what happens when you’re busy making plans, right?

Running

I would like  to run 5 races (of any length) this year.  This is a manageable number, but with the summer pretty much completely out and my first half not until April, I’ll have to do some good planning.  I would also really like to get my endurance back (has anyone seen it?).  My endurance is much better right now than it was this summer (stinkin humidity!), but it’s nowhere near where it was last year.  I don’t want to put a specific number on how far I want to be able to run without a walk break (although 11 miles would be great again! ;P), but I’ll know if when I have had significant improvement.

Although I didn’t complete this challenge in quite the way I wanted, it was completed and I was thrilled.  You see, a mere 3 weeks after I made this decision, I had to stop running.  I got a stress fracture in my left foot.  I had to stop running for 8 weeks and it took me many more until I could run comfortable again.  So that endurance?  Yup, completely gone.  But I did manage to run 5 races!  I did the Warrior Dash in July, a half marathon in September, a half marathon in October and two 5ks in November.  This year my running goals are a little different.  I have a half marathon in April and I’m really hoping for a PR.  I’m trying to work on the mental aspect of this, I find that this is a big component to work on for me.  After that, I have 2 more half marathons planned and any other races that I run are bonus.  I don’t know what this year will bring family-wise (you heard it here first!) and who knows what will happen.  I plan to put the work in to improve my running (ahem, lose weight), but know that becoming a better runner might not be my biggest goal this year :)

Photography

I love taking pictures and would love to not only take a photography class, but to buy an SLR.  Alas, these aren’t in the budget for this year.  Instead, I’m going to read some books on photography and learn more about the camera that I have.  Do the best with what you’ve got, right?  My goal is to be able to better translate what I see through the lens into the picture I take.

Not only did I not learn anything about photography (except for the fact that I still am eager to learn), but I barely took any pictured at all!  Todd and I did lots throughout the year and we dutifully lugged our camera around with us at every opportunity.  Unfortunately that camera rarely made it out of the bag.  I’m very disappointed in this, because it meant that so many experiences weren’t documented!  However, I’m going to take this challenge by the horns and start taking pictures!  I’m going on vacation (Vegas, baby!) in just over a week, so I’m going to hit the ground running with this one :)

Blogging

The past year and a half has seen a lot of changes here at Flybynyght.  When you’ve been blogging for 8 and a half years, you’re bound to change your message and the way you deliver it from time to time.  I’m going back to my roots and blogging for me.  It’s easy to get caught up in comments and visits, but I write this because I love to write and I love to share my life and interests.  So while the content won’t be changing, the delivery will change.  I want to blog more often.  Everyday is not realistic for me, but several times a week absolutely is.  But if I have nothing to say, I won’t write an entry.  I’m more concerned with quality than I am with quantity.  The second part of this commitment is to not have any long periods without an entry (longer than 2 weeks – I’m trying to be realistic).  I haven’t had a gap-free blog in a loooong time.

Hahahahahhaahah!!!  That’s all I have to say about that one.

Ok, one more thing.  My 10 year blogiversary (I know!  10 years!?!?!  Holy crap!) is in July and my goal is to make blogging a habit again  and again post regularly.  Clearly my track record is NOT good at this one.  Time will tell, and I will absolutely do my best :)

Recipes

I think I’m most excited for this Commitment!  I’ve challenged myself to either make or create a new recipe every week for the year.  That’s 52 recipes that have either been created or followed by me.  I can make more than one a week (and really hope and expect to!), but these can’t be saved up for weeks when I’m really busy.  The only reason to miss a week (and subsequently make up the recipe at the first possible opportunity) is if something happens that is beyond my control like an all-inclusive trip to Mexico.  I’ve already created my first recipe and I’ll be posting that tomorrow – it was simple and delicious!

Wellll…this happened until about November.  I put my all into it until about September.  Unfortunately, I only put my heart into it until  August.  In November I decided to stop (read: quit) my Recipe Challenge.  I just wasn’t having fun anymore.  Feeling as though I *had* to create something really took the joy out of actually creating.  Funny enough, after I finished the ‘structure’ of the challenge, I found that I was actually making more recipes!  Although old favourites were finally being able to be recreated again.  I must say that I’m actually proud that I quit.  There was a time that I would have continued to slog it out and complete it, just to finish.  Even though I wasn’t enjoying myself, and even though in the grand scheme of things, it meant zero.  I know I’m not a quitter, I would have finished just so that I could say that I did it.  So living my life suffers just so that I can have bragging rights?  Um, no.  And now I’m not burned out and am enjoying making new recipes!  Yay all around!

Reading

I want to read 40 books this year.  I know going in that this isn’t realistic for me (as I only read about 20 last year), but I want to commit to making books a larger part of my life.  This will mean choosing to read rather than keeping up so intently on social media (and let’s face it, celebrity gossip) and to PVRing a show instead of watching it in its’ entirety when it’s on. 

Well, that one was a complete fail.  I *think* that I only read 11 or 12 books.  I was so lax with reading that I couldn’t even keep straight which books I’d read!  This year, this is my goal again.  However, this time I think that I have more of a fighting chance of accomplishing it.  It’s only the middle of January and I’ve already finished 2 books, nearly completed 2 more, and have 2 others started!

Appearance

This commitment doesn’t seem to really fit with the others, but it’s the only one that I feel is really NEEDED.  I need to take more care in my appearance, especially when going to work.  I work in a very casual office and it’s just so easy to throw on a t-shirt with my dress pants and whip my hair back and forth put my hair up in a ponytail.  But this needs to stop!  I feel like a shlub a lot because I kinda look like one!  I’ve also decided to start wearing makeup regularly again (I used to be a makeup fiend, but stopped wearing it almost completely 2 and a half years ago when I started to work out regularly).  I commit to wearing actual outfits, complete with hair done and accessories on (I make jewellery for gosh sakes!), at least 4 workdays a week.  Makeup will likely be a part of this, but not a necessity.

Finally!  Something that I did a good job with!!!  Gone are the ponytails and t-shirts and in are the outfits!  I may not be the most fashionable dresser (not because I am unable, but because I am cheap!), but I’m sure to put together an ensemble each and every day.  I haven’t been wearing makeup throughout the work week regularly, but most of the time I do wear it when we go out somewhere – just to feel more put together.  The only thing that I hate about makeup is the trails of mascara and eyeliner that inevitably are streaked across my face as I work out each day…

So when I look at what I had hoped to do for the year, and what I actually did, I am quite pleased.  I think that I was a reaching a little far in how much I wanted to accomplish – but why not reach high, right?  This year I think my Commitments are more realistic and recapture some of the priorities I seemed to have lost last year with my life.

Tomorrow I’ll outline my 2012 Commitments in all of their exciting glory.  I know you’re holding your breath and just can’t wait.

Sincerely,

Fly

*tap**tap* Is this thing on?

24 Jan

Well, hello.

It’s been a while.  To say the least.  A lot has happened in the past, oh, YEAR!  My hiatus from blogging certainly wan’t planned (they never are…) but I enjoyed my time away.  About once a month I’d yearn for detailing my life with my legions (*ahem*) of fans.  I believe that I may just be down to one fan now (Hi, Mom!).  However, I’m completely fine with that.

I went through a short time where site views and comments seemed oh so very important.  I’m glad that that phase was short.  I also realized that although I love to post about the recipes I’ve made – I really don’t like to read other peoples’ recipes in their posts.  The food, yes – the recipes, no (sad, but true).   Because of that, I think I’ll cut down on the number of full on recipes that I post.  Or post the dish and link to the recipe on the Recipe Page for easier reading (although this may be more work – so I wouldn’t hold your breath…).

I also want to post more about me (hello, egocentric blogger here…) and my thoughts, opinions and dreams.  I think I will always be a healthy living blogger (not a food blogger, not a fitness blogger, not an everything-I-do-every-second blogger) but with a big emphasis on sharing my life experiences, healthy or not.

The thing I love about blogging, is that it can ebb and flow with my life.  If I am all about fitness, I can gear my posts toward that; if I am all about black quinoa (yum, by the way), I can gear my posts toward that; and if I’m all about cats, well, someone shoot me.  I also love that I can come and go as I please and not answer to anyone for lack of posting or the content of my posts (more or less, I’m not really rockin any boats here…).

So herein lies another chapter of the ever-evolving flybynyght.com

My first order of business will be to update last years’ Commitments to see how well I did, then a recap of the year, as I did last year  (although I took so few pictures this year, it could be mostly text and oh, so thrilling…).  Then I want to outline what my Commitments are for this year and finally bring you back into my daily life!

I look forward to the journey, and hey, this blog isn’t called flbynyght without reason :)

Sincerely,

Fly