So long, 2013! It was a good year.
We just got back yesterday from visiting family in Charleston, SC. It was good, as always, to see them, and the visits go so fast. We had relatively uneventful plane rides, although our plane was held for 30 minutes in Atlanta while some snowy weather in Denver (our destination) blew through. What a difference a day makes, as I've read today about travel delays all over the country due to the severe cold weather across much of the country.
While in SC, we visited a town/island called Folly Beach, and drove past the house we rented in 2007, my sister's last summer. It was bittersweet. She loved the beach, which is strange given that her siblings really shy away from being in the sun. She loved the fancy house we stayed in and we talked about how we were so glad that we splurged to rent it.
Other activities included a Japanese steakhouse, where they flipped the utensils around and cooked the meal on a big grill in front of the group. The kids especially enjoyed it. We also went to a new bowling alley/restaurant downtown, and the picture below shows my younger brother and Mr W doing their respective things. Older brother and I played pinball too, and I was reminded that younger brother and I spent a lot of quarters on pinball when we were growing up. I earned two free games, btw :-)
Although I'm not one to make resolutions because I don't keep them, I've been thinking of some changes I'd like to make regarding my free time and some other aspects of my life.
I'm backing off of the jewelry thing (again). I've been making things for the wrong reason, namely making things to stock my Etsy shop, and they don't sell well enough for me to justify the time (at this time) to promote and try to drive traffic to my shop. The poor sales at the craft show I did last month really drove it home that this is not how I want to spend my free time right now. I'm going to clean up the area of my living room where I do my crafty stuff, and put things away for a while.
I'd like to cook more. It takes more organization and planning than I've been giving it. Mr W is getting older and his palette is expanding such that I feel like I can stop making two things each time we eat. I know, I know, I should have never gotten into the habit, but it is what it is. While we were in SC, he shucked oysters and thought they were quite good, and ate shrimp as well.
I'm going to accept the way I look right now. This is a biggie, and I'm not going to bore you with details about the path I had to take to get here, but it was residual divorce stuff. I feel progress has been made, and my perspective is more that I'm grateful to be healthy.
I want to save to take a big trip. Related to this is to get better at staying on a budget with my finances. I've always pictured myself as someone who would benefit by a little overseas travel. I decided that if I didn't have anyone to travel with by the time I turned 50, I'd book a trip to the UK with Road Scholar. I I have a year and a half until then, and it's time to start saving. There is the possibility that my brother and SIL might go to Spain this summer with a couple of friends, and I would try to tag along on that if it worked out.
And those are good starts. The last thing isn't a goal so much as something that needed to happen so I could continue the goal of getting regular exercise. My lower back has been hurting for the last couple of months. I thought originally that I hurt it doing yoga. All well and good, and I've successively backed off of doing things that I thought would aggravate it. The act of standing for more than 20 minutes or so (like I need to do for working in the lab) hurt quite a bit, and I was taking Ibuprofen for the pain most days. I bought a new pair of Danskos, which helped, but I was getting concerned that I had done something serious to my lower back.
Fast forward to the Charleston trip. I was nervous about sleeping on anything other than my Tempur-pedic fancy shmancy mattress. Mr W and I each had half of a trundle bed. I borrowed several of my SIL's quilts and along with a couple of pillows, was able to sleep with my shoulders elevated a bit. Lo and behold a couple of days go by and I'm waiting for the pain to start and it never does. Huh. The working theory now is that it's my damn bed/pillow configuration. I propped myself up a bit last night and it seems to help. I wondered whether the fact that a certain dog sleeps in my spot most of the day has anything to do with this. As in perhaps the mattress is getting compressed there? I don't know, but I'm going to try to rotate it and see if that helps too. I am relieved to have made progress on figuring out the cause (hopefully) of this back pain, and am looking forward to getting back to spin class and yoga.