Tag Archives: Gratitude Friday

Gratitude Friday

1. Lounging in the backyard. Right now is that magic moment in Colorado when everything is green and the sun is out, but it’s not too hot yet and the mosquitoes haven’t arrived. Maybe one day we’ll landscape our backyard a bit more beyond the three raised beds, the Golden Raintree, the clematis that covers one whole wall, and the roses we don’t really take great care of but they bloom anyway, but for now the green carpet is just fine for the dogs, all they really want.

2. Garden time! Eric has been working so hard on it — weeding, putting compost into all the raised beds, and planting. So far we have peppers, cucumbers, pumpkins, zucchini, and tomatoes. We’ll get basil once we can find somewhere with healthy plants, and I’d like to keep trying to find that variety of watermelon we planted that one year that did so well but we forgot to save the tag. I am excited about all the potential blooms on my peonies and for feeling a bit better (I’ve had a cold all week) so I can start planting some more flowers and help with the weeding.

The yummy watermelon in question

Worm bins and all the compost they made this winter

3. Good food. I’ve been obsessed with cucumbers, spinach, hummus, and falafel on naan bread. I also made biscuits the other night that were super yummy.

4. Epic naps. Since I’m trying to get over this cold, and the lingering burn out from work, I’ve been taking 2-3 hour naps almost every afternoon. It’s so obvious how badly I need the rest.

5. My tiny family. The above picture was from the other day, one of the first days it hadn’t rained, the sun was out and it was warm. At some point, all three of the boys got too hot and hunkered down in the shade.

There was a squirrel on the neighbor’s roof he was very interested in

“Can we haz some of your snack, Dad?”

Bonus joy: Wild Writing with Laurie, Chloe’ and Mikalina, Booksmart at the Lyric with Chloe’, not teaching yoga this week because I knew it was what my body needed to recover, good books (I’m almost done with There There by Tommy Orange), good TV (She’s Gotta Have It‘s second season was really good, and I liked Dead to Me), good movies (I just watched Always Be My Maybe on Netflix and really liked it), a warm shower, pay day.

Gratitude Friday

1. I’m still here. Yes I’m retired. Yes I’m done with 500 hour yoga teacher training. Yes Eric is now on his summer vacation. Yes the sun is finally out today after a whole lot of wet, dark, and cold. And yet, as is pretty typical every year at this time, I’m kind of stuck to the couch, reading and watching TV and taking naps. Sure I’m also teaching yoga and going to the gym and walking the dogs and doing laundry and such, but I’m feeling the full weight of the burnout that comes after the recent years of effort and discomfort and overwhelm. It’s such an interesting process, and it seems like part of me is living it and another part is watching it happen. When people ask me how it feels to be retired, I think they expect something different, a relaxed sense of euphoria and freedom, but that doesn’t come immediately. There’s a lot to work through first.

2. I’m now a 500 Hour CYT. I’m probably actually an E-CYT, but I’d need to go back and calculate my teaching hours to be sure, (it means 1000 hours of teaching experience). I’m very proud of myself for finishing this, for sticking with it. One of my primary teachers said of me, “I love your insight, dedication, and inclusiveness! You are a great teacher!” That meant a lot to me because she is a really amazing human and teacher.

3. Lilacs in the bathroom. Our bushes were burying our mailbox, so Eric did some trimming and brought them in for me. I’m glad he did because the next day it snowed.

4. Morning walks. They were sort of a risk and a bit of a bummer the past few days because of the rain, but this morning was lovely.

5. My tiny family. My favorite part of retirement so far is getting to spend more time with them.

Bonus joy: nachos, a big glass of cold clean water, writing with Mikalina and Chloe’ in Laurie’s Wild Writing class, sitting in the sauna with Eric, having the swimming pool all to myself, good books (I’m reading There There by Tommy Orange while I ride the bike at the gym), good TV (I just finished the second season of Fleabag, and it was so good), naps, hummingbirds, taking my time.

Gratitude Friday

A collection of plants

All the plants from my CSU office

1. Zero more days at CSU!!! It hasn’t completely sunk in yet. I am so focused on prepping and teaching the capstone for my 500 hour yoga teacher certification on Sunday that I haven’t fully relaxed into the reality that from here on out, I am the one making all the decisions about where I focus my time and effort. This morning, I removed myself as an admin on the Facebook page, logged out of the Instagram and Twitter accounts, and checked my email for the last and final time: done.

2. It’s finally time to put a garden in. I recently finished the novel Tulip Fever and am reading a nonfiction book about the same topic, Tulipomania: The Story of the World’s Most Coveted Flower & the Extraordinary Passions It Aroused. That, combined with my Dutch roots, makes me want to plant a bunch of tulips this year, in varying shades of purple.

3. Morning walks. There are all kinds of babies right now, the river is full of snow melt, and everything is turning so green. Not only do I not need a headlamp, but I start out wearing sunglasses!

4. Wild Writing with Laurie and Chloe’ and Mikalina. I signed up for a short session to launch myself into my “retirement.” This morning is the first meeting and I can’t wait!

5. My tiny family. It’s only been a day and a half since I finished up at CSU, but I already can feel how much I missed getting to spend time with my boys, and how lovely it’s going to be getting to be around them more. If nothing else, there clearly will be WAY more pictures of them to share.

Bonus joy: hummingbirds, the sound of the whole house fan in the morning, the prospect of finally being able to clean out and organize my home office, teaching yoga, aqua aerobics, Pilates with Ashley, the smell of my lilacs, how healthy my Peonies are, tape, that place you get when you are transitioning or moving where you finally can surrender and let things go, working in my pjs, Ann’s irises continuing to thrive, dandelions, a big glass of cold clean water, my infrared heating pad after getting needled at physical therapy, health insurance, the privilege and luxury of being able to quit my job, long naps, reading in bed at night while all three boys sleep, good TV, clementines.

Gratitude Friday

1. Baby foxes! The pictures aren’t great because with two dogs, this is as close as we can get to them. The last year or so were the first babies in at least five years. Our fox population got wiped out by plague or rabies or some combination of both, but they are finally back.

2. Morning walks. There are going to be a lot more of these in my future.

3. Flowers in the bathroom. Eric bought me these. I love when he does that, sometimes because I’m having a hard week or sometimes for no reason at all.

4. Three more days at CSU!!! I took some final pictures of my office today, my last Friday in that space. Eric is coming tomorrow to take some of my plants to his office, so I realized if I pack most everything up today, he could help me move it out when he’s here, which means these are the final moments this space will look like this. As soon as I start boxing stuff up, it’s going to feel really real.

5. My tiny family. I love how Sam always wants to be right with me. I’m sad that Ringo feels that way about Eric and not me, but I guess I can’t have everything.

Bonus joy: the flock of tiny birds sitting on my fence and in my lilacs, sushi, all the people who are stopping by my office to tell me good stuff, cupcakes and awards, money I hadn’t expected, how much greener the grass gets every time it snows, Pilates with Ashley, aqua aerobics, sitting in the sauna, teaching yoga, being so close to being done with some really big things, knowing what I’m going to be doing but allowing room for surprise, good books, the sweetest Facebook page for an elementary school choir and the videos they post, writing with Mikalina, texting with Chloe’ and my brother, emails from my mom (not saying you have to email me, Mom, but rather while I was cleaning out my work email today I found a whole folder of emails from you and it made me happy), going to a movie on a weekday with Carrie, shock wave therapy for my knees, an awesome physical therapist, THC gummies, CBD oil, living in Colorado where both things are now legal, napping, the smell of my lilacs.

Gratitude Friday

1. You, kind and gentle reader. I got a lovely letter full of encouragement from one of you a few weeks ago and this morning I was thinking about how lucky I am that there are still people showing up here, even though I’ve written so much less often these past few years. Thank you for all of that — the love, the encouragement, the patience, the listening, the showing up.

2. Morning walks. This week, I did one without a headlamp because it was already so light out at 5:30 am. We tried to find the den of baby foxes, but it seems like mama may have moved them. We got more snow, but things are turning green and blooming and the river is filling up from snow melt higher up.

3. Flowers in the bathroom. I knew my remaining daffodils wouldn’t survive the snow, so I cut and brought them inside. My friend Emily sent me bulbs a few years ago, when she saw me on Facebook saying how much I loved them but always forget every year until it was too late to plant. Every year since, they surprise me first thing in spring, and I am reminded how easy and wonderful love and kindness can be.

4. Nine more days at CSU!!! This afternoon, there’s a celebration in my honor. Yesterday I found out that my last day of work would be the last day I’d have access to my email, so I started deleting everything, which felt weird but also thrilling. It’s officially now the moment where I don’t do anything new, but rather finish up what I’m working on and start clearing out. For nineteen years this has been a central part of my life. I was really good at it and loved most of the people I worked with but I also had one foot out the door for some time. It was never my “thing,” but rather the best job option “for now” and there’s a sense of excitement that I finally am going to have the space and time to honor and prioritize my own intentions.

5. My tiny family. They are essential.

Bonus joy: no I don’t have a new puppy but Chloe’ does!, sunshine, getting enough sleep (whatever that even means), a new therapy for my knee that seems like a particular kind of magic because I don’t understand exactly how it works but it does and I have easy access to it, teaching yoga, appliances that work, clean water, electricity, fresh good food, the internet, good books, TV that’s just good enough to keep me entertained but not so good that I have to give it my full attention, spring, blooms, bird song, saying “no,” massages, clean sheets, a good physical therapist, being able to email my doctor instead of having to call or make an appointment, the call to my insurance company being easy and fast, my “new” car, having dogs that are/were so awesome you still miss them like crazy a decade later, hummingbirds, the particular blue of robin eggs.

Gratitude Friday

1. 14 days left at CSU!!! Yes, I have officially started counting days rather than weeks. After being in this space with these people doing variations of this work for 19 years, I’m now down to only 14 more days. It feels great and awful, exactly right and weird. It’s also like a break up where even if it’s mutual, there’s some grief for the thing that’s ending. And I know how things go for me: any big change, (and this one is major), leaves me unsettled for the next three years. It has always taken me that amount of time to make the full shift, to complete the transition, so this isn’t actually “over” in 14 days. All that said, I’m ready to begin.

2. I got my car back!!! Seriously, it seems like some kind of miracle. One extreme hailstorm, four months, and $10,000 worth of repairs later — just in time to get my snow tires taken off. It’s weird how many people heard the amount of repairs required and thought they should have just given me a new car. Um, it’s only two years old and still worth $30,000, WHY would they scrap it and give me a new one?! That makes no sense.

3. Morning walks. Eric found a den of fox kits that I haven’t gotten to see yet, so that’s my mission the next few mornings I walk — find the fox puppies and see them for myself.

4. Taking care of myself. I am very lucky to have the time, the support, and the resources to be able to do what I need to do for the places that hurt.

Relaxing with some heat and “stim” after physical therapy

5. My tiny family. They are the best, my favorites.

Bonus joy: a smart and kind physical therapist, aqua aerobics, sitting in the sauna, my infrared heating pad, writing with Chloe’ and Mikalina, clementines, everything turning so green, the sound of birds singing in the morning, computer glasses, reading in bed at night while Eric and the dogs sleep, wearing pajamas all day, having all the laundry done by lunch on Friday, lunch, fresh bread, sushi, good TV (finished Special on Netflix and started Ramy on Hulu), poetry, my daffodils coming back when I was worried they wouldn’t, coffee with Carrie, laughing with Eric.

Gratitude Friday

1. Spring. It’s officially here. I looked out into our backyard just the other day, the sliding glass door open because it was nice and sunny outside, and said to Eric, “our yard is so green!”

An older picture of my desk, back when it was a lot cleaner

2. Only 3.5 weeks left at CSU!!! Every once in a while, I catch myself thinking I maybe made a mistake quitting, that maybe I could have made it work, and then I immediately laugh because that’s just ridiculous. And then I have a day like yesterday where I worked SO hard, did so many good things, and then someone was shitty to me, and I thought “May 15th can’t come soon enough.” The only other time in my life when I gave myself permission to do what was absolutely right for me no matter what other people thought or whether or not it even made sense was when I moved to Colorado to be with Eric, so I think it’s safe to trust myself this time too. Can you imagine how awesome it will be if this turns out as good as my marriage?!

3. My last module of my 500 hour yoga teacher certification. It’s the vinyasa module, which everyone had told me was hard, but I’m really loving it so far. If you don’t know, to become certified to teach you do a 200 hour training, which is like getting your undergraduate degree. Then, if you want to keep going, you can do the next 300 hours and become 500 hour certified, which is like having your Master’s degree. You can go on to do another 200 and become 700 hour certified, but most people I know get 500 hour certified and then specialize in something. For me, that’s yoga for people in bigger bodies, adaptive yoga, and restorative yoga. I’ll have to teach a capstone at the end of this module that incorporates something from all the modules for this 300 hours, and I’m actually looking forward to it even though it’s a lot. During this session, I am obsessed with taking myself out to lunch at Slyce Pizza Co.

The ducks are easier to spot, but can you find the heron?

4. Morning walks. It’s getting so light so early again. On Thursday morning, I only had to have my headlamp on for about 30 minutes, probably didn’t really even need it, and the sky was amazing. We’ve been seeing the heron fishing in the river almost every morning, and the ducks and geese are busy getting ready for babies. Every once in a while we see raccoons and foxes or a beaver, and the herd of white tailed deer are always around even if we don’t run directly into them.

Heron fishing. Can you see it?

I tried to get a picture of the moon, but the camera on my phone doesn’t capture low light shots very well

5. My three boys. The two with four legs who are covered in fur, and the one who leaves me love notes on the kitchen counter.

Sam taking a nap with me

Bonus joy: lunch with Aramati, coffee with Carrie, aqua aerobics, sitting in the sauna, sunshine, people saying nice things about me, good TV (this week it’s a season of Fixer Upper I hadn’t seen yet), good books, sort of new to me music (Sol Rising, whose tracks I’d heard before, but I didn’t realize how many full albums he had that I’d like and would make really good music for yoga classes), bran muffins with dried raspberries, getting the laundry done on Friday morning, physical therapy, robins hopping around on the ground, bird song in the morning, things turning green, a new puppy, saying goodbye to an old puppy — the way he stood there wagging his tail with a toy in his mouth before he gave up and got on his bed and insisted I pet his head for the entire hour long visit, how happy Ringo is when he finds something he can pick up and carry for part of the walk (this week it was an adult sized single ski glove and a stick), the way Sam always wants to be right where I am, how Eric gets mad when someone is mean to me, how good he is at cheering me up.