Friday, December 11, 2015

We've made it to another Friday! And while it's my turn for the weekend rotation at work, I'm still celebrating the week's end.  It was a good week; a productive week. A week where I tried to be present, thankful, and to see the opportunities all around me. To focus on the good moments, as opposed to all the little annoyances that so easily influence a person's mood and thinking.

I work hard to remind myself of all the things I'm grateful for. It takes more effort than it should to concentrate on these things, but I suppose what's important is my knowledge of their presence and place in my life. I don't spend my days with a little black rain cloud over my head, but I've come to acknowledge that I am not a particularly cheerful person. (Not to be confused with being an unhappy person, which is something else entirely.) I'm optimistic, always, and most people would describe me as friendly, witty and pleasant, but I seldom naturally wake up with a smile on my face and am prone to flustering in my personal life (though I am actively working on becoming a morning person).

When I watch clips of Jimmy Fallon on The Tonight Show, I always admire how easily and honestly he laughs. He sees humor in everything. I wish I was that genuinely amused and delighted by the world around me. (I have a friend, Angy, who is the most cheerful person I've ever met. I aspire every day to see the world as she does.) My disposition is not likely something I can change dramatically, as it's an innate part of what makes me Me, but I can work to sway grumpy thoughts when they enter my consciousness. One way in which to do that is to acknowledge moments of gratitude. Verbally, in doesn't matter. As long as I put it out there.

As such, I'm combining a post full of things I have seen, heard, and bookmarked recently with a life lately post. Which I will call... Bookmarked Life. Or Lifemarked. Or Blately. (I clearly missed my calling as a professional product namer.)

Side note: Did I mention this is my third blog post this week? I know.

Grateful ... For a husband who hangs Christmas lights while I am at work, so I returned to a house brimming with holiday cheer.

Grateful ... For these simple and inexpensive wooden hoops, which have helped facilitate my new love of embroidery and piqued Kiddo's interest in cross stitch. After recently finishing a little robot kit we picked up in Seattle a year ago, he's moving on bigger, bolder things like a Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy pattern. It's fun to see him explore different creative outlets. (Etsy is chock full of talented cross stitch + embroidery pattern artists.)

Also on my must-learn list: knitting giant blankets

Grateful ... For fresh ground coffee and a simple French press, which have rekindled my love of good old fashioned coffee. When it comes to my morning brew, a minimalist approach always turns out the best. Honorable mention: leftover whipped cream impulsively plopped on the top. (We've had our trusty French press for over a decade, but the same exact model is still available.)

Grateful ... For this boy, who draws by lamplight and (occasionally) lets me drag him out of the house for some mother-son quality time. Motherhood is fleeting, and I try my hardest to make the most of those small opportunities for togetherness. (Even if he is smack dab in the middle of the moody teenage stage.)

Grateful ... For this plastic lion from Target's Dollar Spot. It gave me an excuse to use copious amounts of glitter and put my restless hands to work. (I see a silver brontosaurus in my future...)

// Love this DIY house-shaped shelf which would be perfect for getting knick-knacks up and off of surfaces.

Grateful ... For this soup recipe, which I'm currently making on a weekly basis. It's simple, garlicky, and oh so warming + satisfying. (Prawn and Corn Soup from Top with Cinnamon, always doubled and tweaked to our liking.)

Grateful ... For an instructor at the hospital who did the impossible: make an 8-hour class interesting, inviting, and thought-provoking. She also brought along colored pencils, coloring books, and crayons to encourage doodling. I kind of wish I'd used a blank piece of paper; my creation is fridge-worthy.

Grateful ... For this amazing Pyrex dish, complete with original brass candle warmer/stand which I nabbed for just $12. (!!!) I haven't collected much over the past year, as our current kitchen doesn't have storage space beyond our everyday dishes. This sweet find rekindled my love of collecting unique pieces of Pyrex. (Because they bring me joy, and one day we will have the perfect place to display them all out in the open.)

In other Pyrex news:
// Learned about JAJ/England Pyrex. It's real Pyrex with amazing patterns I had never seen before.
// A Pyrex museum in my own backyard? How am I just finding out about this?!

Grateful ... To have some beautifully handwritten recipe cards from my grandmother and great-grandmother.  Especially this time of year when I'm drawn to the kitchen and the consumption of comfort foods. (A cake recipe, handed down, on this walnut cake stand = dreams coming true.)

// Debunking the water consumption myth.
// Living in a real life IG feed. (Sign me up for that class.)
// Goodread's Best Books of 2015 list was just published and I'm taking notes.
// Serial 2! and other great podcasts (via Erin)

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