Spring is officially here so that means taking down the winter decorations and putting up spring ones.
Spring is officially here so that means taking down the winter decorations and putting up spring ones.
It wasn’t very busy at work on Friday, so when I got there a wee bit before twelve to start my shift at noon, I figured I’d ask for leave. I had some reporting stuff to do later on, so I just asked for leave until 16:00, which I got.
Then Nienke suggested we go to the movies. So she asked for leave, and then Thomas was game for movie as well. We harassed traffic for quick answers, which we got, and off we went to the cinema. We decided on Need for Speed which was actually a pretty good movie. There was a decent plot, nice actors and very pretty (and fast) cars.
Afterward we went back to work until the end of our shifts, it was hilarious seeing everyone’s faces when we showed up again after leaving earlier 😀
Saturday we went to Ikea, really early in the morning. I got the big Hemnes cabinet along with some fabric baskets to put inside it. When we got to the kitchen part, I fell for the dishes there. I’d been bored with my regular whites anyway so I got new plates and bowls in dark purple and faded green. Also two picture frames to display some of the Paul Kidby prints I got as a Kickstarter reward. After getting home I spent the rest of the day building the bloody cabinet. By nightfall it was ready so I could put stuff in it. It will probably take a little bit of getting used too, as it’s a wee bit deeper than I anticipated/remembered. But it does already look much better than before. It’s real nice to have a proper place to spread out the altar.
This morning in Pilates class we got a new series of excercises, ouch! After lunch I removed all the winter decorations still in place and put up the spring stuff. It looks nice 🙂
What with the dour weather today, here’s the first installment of my 100 Things blog thing.
1. Sitting at the edge of a body of water, with the sun on my shoulders and my feet dangling in the water.
I was thinking about recent years the other day and this one summer day popped into my head. I wasn’t sure when it was, but I remembered myself and Eva and Nienke, sitting along the canal, our feet in the water, enjoying the sun. I knew I had pictures of this, I remember them, too. Unfortunately, twenty minutes of going through my photo folders later, I still haven’t found those. I do have, however, unearthed a video of that day. Just a short 30 second clip of the three of us. I think we’re discussing summer clothes.
2. The smell of freshly mowed grass.
I love living around a big field of grass. Every time the county’s gardening people show up to mow it I detest them for it since they also come early and use a little tractor type mower that makes a lot of noise and wakes me up. But the smell afterwards more than makes up for it 🙂
3. My cats.
Monkey’s a cat with a definite attitude, but at the same time he can be such a love bug. Tonight he spent a few hours sleeping on my lap, clearly showing the trust he has in me. He was so far gone in sleep he even turned over and showed me his pretty belly, which he almost never does.
Milo makes me smile with with his playing (something Monkey never really does). I love how he enthusiastically plays soccer with various cat toys until he bats it under something where he can’t get at it so he sits down and looks at it with this puzzled expression until I grab the toy for him. And his high pitched squeeky voice always makes me chuckle. Miew!
4. Lying comfortably outside, in the grass, with my eyes closed, in the spring sun, with just a touch of lukewarm wind.
Related to the first point, there’s just something so relaxing, and safe, about lying there and letting spring invade my senses.
I can’t live without books. It’s that simple. They feed my mind, my imagination, my dreams, my ambitions. They are wings and an anchor, a window and a door, friend and family. They help me make sense of the world, and they allow me to escape; whether it’s a one off that I’ll read once and might have forgotten a year later or an instant classic to me that will stick with me forever.
6. Waking up and realising you don’t have to go anywhere or do anything, you can just lie there and BE.
I love being able to enjoy the quiet and avoid the world for a while in the morning. Especially when it’s early enough that the sun is still coming up. You can hear (and see) the world wake up.
7. Floating in water.
Best mediation style, ever. One of my dreams is to have a house with a small pool (or a giant ass bathtub) that I can float in. It just has to be big enough that I don’t touch the edges and I’ll be perfectly happy.
8. The smell of spiced meat cooking.
I love most foods during cooking, but there’s just something about the combination of meat and herbs/spices together as they cook (or better yet, roast). If they made air freshener in this smell, I’d buy it 😀
I looooove cake. Of all the more sweet desserts and treats, cake is by far my favourite. Especially layer cakes with cream or whatnot in between. Some of my favourites are Schwarzwalder kirsch cake, nougatine meringue cake, lemon cheesecake or basic cheesecake with strawberry topping.
10. Being taken care of by my mom when I’m sick.
Obviously the being sick part itself does not make me happy, in fact in tends to piss me off. However, whenever I’m really sick, I prefer to hang out at the parent’s place because just being around Mom while she does her normal things and such takes me back to childhood and makes me feel better much faster.
I love how something as little as a week, week-and-a-half, off from work can restore your balance. I’m not particularly motivated (yet) to get back to work on Monday, but I’m sure that’ll come once I arrive back in the pit 😀
In the meantime, I’ve had a relaxing week. Monday I hung out with Eva, did some shopping. Eva needed a radio for the baby’s room so I took the opportunity to buy a new SD card for my camera. Afterwards we stopped for some groceries and some browsing at the Wibra. I’m a sucker for cheap/discount stores so I ended up with a bag of easter/spring inspired items to decorate the house with while I wait for spring proper to arrive.
Using the new items with the stuff from last year led me to this:
Tuesday I hung out at the Parents’ place. It had been a week and a half or so since I’d seen them, and as I usually see them at least once a week, it was overdue. It was a quiet afternoon, which is nice.
Friday evening Eva, Ingrid and Mellien came over to see me and Nienke and we went out for pancakes at the pancake restaurant in town. It was gloriously delicious (I had a ham/cheese/pineapple pancake) and we had a lot of fun talking. Afterward we went back to Nienke’s place to play Just Dance 3 on the Wii. Even Eva, despite being 37 weeks along, did a dance. The rest of us all went twice, and then we decided to do a quick round of Glee Karaoke before the other three had to go again.
Today I had lunch at the Parents’ again before returning home and finding Nienke cutting up all the trees in her yard. I didn’t really have anything better to do, and I love playing with the tree cutter so I gladly assisted her with this. Nienke’s upper arms thanked me 😀
We cut huge amounts from the conifer near her bedroom window, so to make it all fit, we had to push down on the cuttings to create more space. And to allow the lid to close…
Today I also found my very first Postcrossing card on the doormat, it came from Poland. Earlier in the week I got a message from the website that my first sent card was received. Score is now 1 for 1 and there’s four more from me underway to far away places 🙂
The ice-king trembles on his throne,
And holds his rod with loosened hand;
For there are murmurs in the air
Of one who cometh, sweet and fair,
To break with smiles the monarch’s band.
The skies are dawning a new blue,
To welcome her whose dancing feet
Thro’ cloudland hasten from afar,
Guided by sun, and moon, and star,
Her waiting friends once more to greet.
The timid violets lift their heads,
And heavenward turn their gentle eyes,
And catch the fragrance newly born
Which cometh with the Spring’s glad dawn,
And steal their color from the skies.
The merry birds on twig and branch
Trill out the news with fluttering wings,
While Robin seeks the early fruit,
Impatient watching the green shoot,
And the glad tidings gaily sings.
The brook, grown weary of restraint,
Has burst its weakened bonds at last,
And rushing down the mountain-side,
Lends its fresh influence far and wide,
And Winter’s icy reign is past!
– Mary Dow Brine (1816-1913)
I can tell it’s spring, I’m all over my house doing things. The increase in light always has a good influence on me, both physical as well as mental and emotional. I’m happier and more content with life in general now than in the winter, even though the financial woes are still there (it’s quiet at work so I can’t make as many hours as I’d like, and as a result I get less money coming in, so far it all still works out but it can’t go much lower).
And in light of said financial woes, I spent money recently 😀 Not that much though, some flea market bargains mostly. The only indulgence was a new garden table for 40 euros. At the flea market I bought a ‘new’ comfy chair for the living room as the old one wasn’t that comfy anymore. It’s nice to sit in, soft yet supportive, and a very pretty purple-greyish colour. There was another one and I was so tempted to take that one too (they were 5 euros a piece) but I just don’t have room for it and there’s no way I can get it up in the attic to use there. I also got a red wooden herb rack for the kitchen for 50 cents and two easy read paperbacks, also for 50 ct.
At another flea market on Liberation Day (May 5) I bought two children’s books, a set of book ends with old globes on them and a hanging, made of netting, IKEA storage thing, all for 1 euro 😀
Thursday’s the big yearly market here in town, not a flea market, but I’ll see if I can find a bargain or two. I definitely need a few more plants/flowers. I have this cute flowerpot that is screaming for some desert type plants. Which reminds me, I shall have to go look around see if I can get some tiles for cheap or nothing somewhere. I want to tile a part of my front yard to turn into a small terrace. And, in combination with that, I’m gonna need some rocks and stuff, to turn the edge of the front yard, where it lies against the neighbours area, into a small proper garden bit (instead of grass). I plan to put some flowers and such there, but also to use aforementioned rocks to create a tower of sorts to play with different levels in that bit. ‘Cause eventually, when money’s less tight, I want a smallish privacy fence between me and the neighbour and that will then be the ‘back wall’ for the proper garden bit.
Spring makes me plan things and also execute those plans. Or at least big parts of it. I’m also working on my attic. I’ve already had part of it converted into a room, but it was used for junk storage mostly the last year. I’m now going to turn it back into a usable space by making it my craft & game room. Game room mostly because I’m gonna store my board games up there since there’s hardly anyone around me who likes playing games 🙁
Crafts to be done there will mostly be bigger stuff like making things for Castlefest and other renaissance faire like things. Although I will probably move most of my other craft stuff upstairs as well to create more space in my bedroom where I store it now. Attic will have a table to work at and cabinetry to hold the various things.
Getting the place into shape goes pretty slow though. I’ve cleaned out most of the room there and, after another vacuuming turn, it’ll be ready to put stuff in there. However, one of the cabinets to be used there is still in use in the bedroom. And I can’t move it from the bedroom until I get two Billy’s from IKEA to replace it (need to put all those books somewhere, no? 😀 ). And getting the Billy’s will have to wait until either holiday bonus or my tax returns come in, whichever comes first. I’m betting on the holiday bonus which should be end of this month. Tax probably not until end of June 🙁 At least both these things should be a significant help with the financial woes 🙂
Right, I mentioned Castlefest. I haven’t gone there in a while, but this year I WILL go, even if I have to crawl there. And I’ll be going as Bluebeard. For that I have an idea of the costume I want, something mostly generic fantasy with some fancy overtones. I’m of the opinion that Bluebeard, outside of his murderous tendencies, was really a charming man, otherwise how’d he ever get that many women to marry him 😀
I’ll obviously need a blue beard to get the message across of who I am, so a trip to the party store is in the works to see what they have in fake beards. I want something that looks as realistic as possible, and is dye-able, since a semi-realistic beard is not gonna be blue by itself.