Keeping up with the times

time time is now quoteWhile some blogging days I like to just sit down and see what comes out, I can’t deny the fact that ultimately, I’m a planner at heart. So all week long I’ve planned to rant reflect about how absurdly fast this past month disappeared and look ahead to the current one. It’s a testament to just how fast last month really did go by in that I didn’t even realize until just now that my to do list has read all week: “Saturday: July Beginning blog post.”

…Yeah.

Given my apparent obliviousness to the entire month of July, I decided to explore this phenomenon a little further, which a Brain Pickings article deems ‘mind time.’ Titled Why time slows down when we’re afraid, speeds up as we age, and gets warped on vacation, the article presents some interesting theories for our perception and memory of time.

When I was eight, for example, I remember long summer and weekend days spent building houses in the woods behind my best friend’s house, scavenging for cool sticks and empty bottles to ‘decorate’ our houses, being quite sure we were the very first to discover a creek there, feeling so dangerous for secretly swimming in it…and yes, this PG definition of ‘dangerous’ did persist throughout much of my life to probably my parents’ relief, but that’s a different blog post.

The article points out that the reason days seemed so long when I was eight is because at that point, that year was a whopping 1/8 of my entire life. Now my years make up comparatively less and less of my entire life, making them feel shorter and faster with every passing day, month and year.

For me, all this does is emphasize how important it really is to be making the most of every moment I can…and it’s probably a little hard to be practicing living in the present if I don’t even know when that is. August is bringing plenty of notable things my way, too:

My first pizza in four months. My homemade (ish) attempt at a gluten-free, vegan pizza to be exact.

A housewarming party! I love hosting all my favorite people under one roof, so in addition to being a great incentive to finish all our DIY projects and stock our bar cart, enjoying the place with friends and family will be the final touch to really making our house a home.

New ‘neighbors’. The aforementioned best friend and I have maintained a long distance friendship since I was nine years old. She just accepted a job in the DFW area, though, so we will finally get to see what spending time together is like minus the plane ticket or multiple hour car ride.

What are you looking forward to this month?

UPDATE: I just read Lydia’s post about August’s surprising arrival…after publishing my own. Somebody needs to tell this time to slow down! Who’s with me?

Making room for changes

change

We cannot become what we want to be by remaining what we are. — Max DePree

Isn’t it funny how our minds unconsciously prepare us for upcoming change? I know, I was just writing about how I’m making a conscious effort to live in the moment and appreciate where I am now before I move. Even so, as I rolled into work a tad on the late side this morning I caught myself cursing traffic and thinking, “I can’t wait until I move in a month and don’t have to deal with this traffic anymore.”

Mind you, my new home will not be any closer to work than I am now. In fact, traffic could even be probably will be worse on that side of town. But it’s like the promised newness is a glittery object  (preferably from Anthropologie) dangling in front of me that I can’t help but mesmerizingly coo “oooh pretty” with arms outstretched.

Rather than look at this as a bad thing, I’ve realized it’s actually a coping mechanism of sorts. I’m soon closing the “post-grad firsts” chapter of my life, and my mind is just helping me prepare for a smooth transition to whatever is next. Instead of wanting to hold on tightly to what I have now out of comfort, nostalgia, fear or laziness, my mind is letting me acknowledge those minor details that aren’t 100% awesome to fuel anticipation of all that’s to come.

So, May marks the last month of my South Dallas home and roommates, and I plan to make the most of it by…

  • Spending as many sunny afternoons at the rooftop pool as I can, even if it’s just for the last hour of sun after work.
  • Actually using my apartment’s gym.
  • Hosting a going away party, preferably pool-side of course. 
  • Finally photographing my favorite buildings, painted walls and random art structures throughout South Dallas.
  • Riding the DART…somewhere.

southside sign

Early Mornings

At first I thought I was crazy to commit to waking up earlier during late fall/winter when mornings are supposed to turn dark and cold. Luckily, I forgot I live in Texas, which means mornings have been much more manageable than expected with just a cup of hot coffee or tea and the occasional sweatshirt.

Dallas Mornings

Waking up an hour early (which for me means 6 a.m.) might not sound like much to some of you, but it took – and takes – a lot out of me. In college, I came way too close to not graduating on time despite a quite good GPA and full credits simply because I literally could not wake up in time for an early morning class. It was one of those last semester blow off pass/fail classes and ALL you had to do was show up twice a week at 8 a.m. for about 15 minutes.

I think I’ve made my point.

But for someone who also suffers from both chronic forgetfulness and lateness, waking up with enough time to think about life and get ready for my day is kinda a necessity. This post is also a lovely reminder to myself, as the past few…well, okay…weeks…have not been as successful as November.

Dallas Sunrise

Here’s some things I’ve learned about waking up:

Don’t

  • Say “Just a few minutes.” Don’t even pause to think about how cold it is, how tired you are, how comfortable your favorite and aptly named comforter is…get out of bed right away.
  • Get back in your bed for any reason.

Do

  • Change your alarm title to something that motivates you. For me it’s reminding myself the why behind my waking up.
  • Get a wake-up accountability partner. Someone to affectionately bug you, text you in the morning and wait for your lucid response.

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Sarah’s November Goals

Seriously, how is it already November? Lately I’ve caught myself saying, “I’d like to finish that by the end of the year,” as it seems just around the corner. But I’m a dreamer that, ironically enough, likes to plan, so sometimes I need to rein myself in and ask, but what can I do now? So here’s a couple things I’m focusing on this month:

1. Wake Up Early. There’s something to be said for spending time each morning to get ready emotionally and mentally for the day (not to mention physically, doing more than haphazardly throwing together some clothes and a bun before running out the door, brushing on some makeup in the car and being late to work anyways). 6 a.m. here I come.

2. Research Cameras. To pursue one of my overall goals, I’ve been looking into investing in a good camera soon, something I can take quality photos and video with…along with a much needed photography class to make the most of it. I’d love any suggestions for equipment and Dallas photography classes!

3. Start (& Finish) Sewing Projects. Plans for a white ruffle duvet cover and some minor clothing updates have been sitting in a pile right next to my sewing machine. It’s time to take these off my to do list and start enjoying the finished products.

Like Lydia, I’ve been eyeballing the Klyde Warren Park calendar of free events so I might throw in a few free yoga, boot camp and SWING DANCING classes as well. If you can’t tell, I’m really excited about the potential for swing dancing.

What do you want to accomplish this month?