Hi everyone! Did you miss me? Did you even notice I was gone?
It’s been half a year since I last posted and a lot has happened in my life during that time. So today, just to ease back into things, I’ve decided it’d be nice if we catch up as friends do. Grab a drink, take a seat, and let me know how you’re doing and what’s been going on in your life. I’ve missed you all.
I’ve redesigned the blog.
Things are looking a little different around here these days. While I loved my original blog design, I felt it only really worked for the limited color palette I was using while creating art with my pens. Now that I’ve expanded my art collection to include lots of color (thanks to my promarker collection), I wanted something simple that wouldn’t clash with the art I share – so walah! Here it is.
Let’s catch up: How do you like the new design? Have you been changing things up online too?
I had to say goodbye to both of my dogs.
Before the hiatus I mentioned that I had to say goodbye to Tasha, my fifteen-year-old beautiful bitch. As if that wasn’t hard enough, one month later I then had to say goodbye to Mad, my thirteen-year-old handsome boy. And while both of these were incredibly hard losses, Mad’s passing really broke my heart because we had no clue his time was up. Whereas Tasha had been slowly crumbling before our eyes, Mad seemed perfectly fine and was running around the yard the day before he passed. And I guess that’s good for him, I’m glad his last days were normal, happy dog ones. But oh, I wasn’t ready, especially so soon after losing Tasha. Losing loved ones is so heartbreaking.
I will be creating a post highlighting Mad and the type of dog he was soon, but until then know he was just as much of a mess as I was and that’s one of the reasons I loved him.
Let’s catch up: How have the last few months been treating you and your loved ones? Has this year been one of loss for you too?
I’ve been taking care of our new puppy.
After Tasha passed, our family adopted a puppy, and boy, what a fun little monster. No one is quite sure what he is (I don’t have $100 lying around for a DNA test), but the rescue we worked with suggested a Shepherd/Lab/Akita mix. He is massive – eight months old he weighs over 65 pounds and has the legs of a giraffe. (Okay, that’s a slight exaggeration, but he’s tall.)
He’s definitely not like Tasha or Mad (I think Mad was a bit annoyed with him at first, tbh), but I think he’s still loveable in his own way. He’s playful, curious, and is always on the hunt for critters in the yard to pounce on. And while he doesn’t cuddle or seek affection as much as my mom would like, I do think he loves us in return. Honestly, I think I’d be a lot worse off now if he weren’t in my life.
Let’s catch up: How are the furry ones in your life doing? Do you use them for a lot of emotional support, like I do?
I got married.
Oh hey, I got married! It still doesn’t feel quite real (especially since my husband lives an ocean away) but yes, I’m now a Mrs. Be amazed!
I have posts planned to discuss my marriage but let me just assure you that my wedding was amazing. For the longest time I wanted to just sneak off somewhere with Dave and get eloped without all the fuss, but I’m glad we went a slightly more traditional route by inviting close friends and family instead. It was great celebrating our union with people with both sides of the ocean, and I think our marriage wil be stronger knowing they all have our backs.
Let’s catch up: Any big life changes happen for you recently? If you’ve been one to imagine your wedding, what kind have you always hoped for?
I took my first domestic flight.
For our “honeymoon” Dave and I decided to visit Washington DC. Not the most romantic place, I know, but we wanted to do something after getting married that wasn’t too costly and I had a $300 flight voucher getting ready to expire so that’s where we ended up.
Now for me, I have to say one of my favorite parts of the trip was that I finally flew my first domestic flight. I mean, really, I’ve been flying for almost six years now and have only ever traveled the route between Chicago O’hare and London Heathrow. So to actually get on a plane and go somewhere new (and to not have to sit there struggling to sleep for eight hours?), I enjoyed it!
Washington DC itself was nice, but for someone who doesn’t really care for history or politics, it doesn’t hold a lot of appeal. I’m sorry, but I’m just horrible when it comes to museums. I like to look at the stuff, but actually read what they’re about and think about their significance? I just don’t. I go “Oh pretty” and then move on. So I didn’t value the exhibits as much as I probably should have but hey, I did appreciate that they were all free. (Poor Dave, he married such an uncultured soul.)
Let’s catch up: Have you gone on any exciting trips recently? How do you feel about museums?
I’ve added color to my art.
Included in this post are a couple of images I created over the summer and look – they have color! I started adding promarkers to my collection after my birthday and, honestly, I just can’t stop. I feel freed now that I’m not just stuck to using those five neon colored pens that I was using before. Of course, I still have a long way to go when it comes to choosing colors that work together and shading and all that fun stuff, but I’m enjoying experimenting with them.
Speaking of my art, haha to the thought that I’ve found my style. My art feels like it constantly changes each time I do it. But hey, that’s okay, I’m not too bothered. As long as I’m seeing progress and growth with what I do, I’m fine with that. And I think I am. I have good days and bad days, but I think the more I do this stuff the better I’m getting. Maybe. Hopefully.
Let’s catch up: Have you been working on anything creative lately? Are you hard on yourself when you create, or are you good at learning to accept where you are?
I spent two months acting as caretaker.
Oh boy, oh boy. To any and all caretakers out there in the world, I salute you. I spent over two months acting as the primary caretaker for a relative with Alzheimer’s and it. was. so. hard. I felt like I lost my ability to do anything for myself and while I tried my best to make it a fun experience, it ultimately just wore on me and my sanity. I felt horrible for my relative that I couldn’t do more, but ugh, I barely know how to take care of myself some days. Makes me worried for motherhood.
Let’s catch up: Have you ever acted as primary caregiver for someone? How did you find the balance between caring for them and caring for yourself?
I’m struggling to get back into my self-care routines.
Between losing the dogs, training the puppy, the wedding, the caretaker thing… all my normal routines have gone out the window and for some reason I’m struggling to get back into the swing of things. Once I finally got my time back to myself I just wanted to do nothing, you know? Just exist without obligation. But that isn’t really good for me. When I let my days result in nothingness, I feel like a waste. So I really need to get back into being productive and taking care of myself – hopefully this blog will help a little with that?
Let’s catch up: How have you been doing in regards to self-care? Do you ever find it hard to do the things for yourself you know you should even when you know it’ll make you feel better?
I’ve been sickly. So sickly.
Maybe part of the reason I’ve lacked motivation to take care of myself is because I’m dying. Well, not literally. But I’ve had some form of cough for over a month now. First it was just this dry cough that felt like I was choking on air. And this past week it has transformed into a phlegm-y productive cough. Oh, and I think I strained something from all this coughing because also now when I cough or sneeze I get this sharp stab of pain in my lower back. I don’t know, I’m just a mess.
I should probably schedule a doctor appointment, but I feel fine? Like, the cough is annoying, don’t get me wrong. Even more so now that I get these sharp pains. But if we remove it from the equation I feel fine so I don’t mind it too much. Is that a bad thing? Should I really force myself to get checked out?
Let’s catch up: Have you been successful avoiding the sickness? Do you normally see the doctor for things like this?
I’m enjoying spending the holidays with my family.
While the holidays are stressful in some ways, I do like that they’re an excuse for families to spend time together, especially since this will likely be one of my last holidays at home. And I’m not even talking about extended family (though they’re okay). I just like that it means my parents and I actually do stuff together – put up decorations, hand out candy, cook food, etc. (But don’t tell my mom that. She’s been getting too carried away. We’re decorating our third Christmas three tomorrow.) It helps break up the monotony of day-to-day life and is useful for creating some pretty fun memories.
Let’s catch up: How have the holidays been for you so far this year? Do you enjoy them or hate them? Have you done anything exciting holiday-wise lately?