This Month Is…

Honey Month!

Now I absolutely love honey.

I love the bees. I love the hives. I love the combs…I just love it all, really. So when I found out we not only had a month dedicated to honey, BUT we were IN that month…I immediately started click clacking on the internet.

While looking into bees I was reminded of three prominent causes for their distress: habitat loss, pesticides, and the dreaded Varroa mite. Keeping this in mind I took myself on a refresher of things the average person (with or without a yard) can do to help give a boost and keep the honey flowing!

Here are some things I learned:

i. plant a bee friendly garden with a) plants native to your area, b) single flower crops, & c) variation so something is flowering all year

ii. use natural pesticides and fertilizers

iii. let some dandelions, clovers, and wildflowers (yes, I mean the weeds) grow free

iv. leave out consistent water sources

v. plant a flowering tree(s) for bees

vi. buy local honey

If you’re like me you’re probably thinking: most of this is definitely geared towards people with yards/plant space… In my current place I definitely can’t just go out and plant a tree or really decide on landscaping at all, but I can decide on my potted plants (all of which are kept outside for the sake of my partner). When it came to finding local honey; however, I was able to find one about twenty miles away which was awesome!

SIDE NOTE: I personally didn’t find my local honey on the search engine linked above. I found mine using google and my location, so don’t feel discouraged if it seems like there’s nothing near you because there probably is. It just might be a smaller operation.

Photo by Matthew T Rader on Unsplash

Road Tripping to the Wedding

You know when you decide to do something which doesn’t seem all that significant, yet somehow turns into a milestone towards adulthood? Probably not with the vague description I gave.

Let me explain.

A cousin of mine is having a wedding in Virginia on Saturday and in a stroke of luck I managed to finagle things so I won’t start training until Tuesday. Since I haven’t had a chance to visit my family in a long while I thought I’d use the week to stop in the two main cities where they live on the way to Virginia.

Seems like a pretty sweet and grand idea, right?

Well, right now I’m still in the second city and let’s just say I’ve learned quite a bit about myself.

Now the drive to the first city is one I’ve done before and wasn’t particularly fazed by. It was the night I spent in first city that did it thanks to a couple things happening. The first was a call from the guy I’m talking to. Was the call very long or in depth? No. On the contrary, the guy I’m involved with is quite dry, but it was the first time he’s ever called and even though it was a bit awkward…it meant a lot to me (mainly because I’d given up hope it would ever happen). The second thing to happen was a nightmare involving an ex.

You see, a while ago I was in a relationship that went off the rails to say the least. It became emotionally abusive, there were threats, and in the end a bit of a stalking situation. Before things officially ceased; however, he moved to a city not far from the first I was visiting. This was the first time I’d driven to the area on my own and the anxiety seemed to manifest itself in my dreams. All I remember of the dream was hearing his voice…replaying things he’d said in the past…some were even harmless things the guy I’m talking to now also happens to say…Regardless I woke with a bad taste in my mouth.

I’m the type who believes we shouldn’t let another person impact our life in such a way and while I was proud I made the drive fully at ease…to have those negative feelings sneak up in my sleep was a stark reminder of just how much he’d affected me. I even had a moment of doubt towards the current guy I’m talking to when his good morning text was too similar to my ex’s the following day. Thankfully, I moved past that rather quickly.

The drive to the second city was an entirely different beast all together. I’d never done the drive on my own before and in a split second I decided to start the seven-hour drive around 9 p.m. Seven hours on the same road with absolutely nothing going on around me. It was a rough ride. I was falling asleep; my butt hurt…I ended up calling my father to harass him and after the guy I’m talking to finished hanging out with his friends- he even called me too. In the end, I managed to make it without having to stop and take a nap because I don’t even know why. The best part?

I get to make the 8 hour drive to Virginia tonight.  

O.P. 18 August 2017

Today Is…

International Cat Day!

Woo! And before anyone asks; the feline pictured above is not mine, BUT I do have a ginger cat snoozing somewhere- I just don’t have the photography skills to do him justice.

Speaking of my little furry friend, he’s been on a bit of patchy ride lately with over-grooming. Our first trip to the vet ended in his anal glands getting expressed (meaning ‘squeezed’ in case you’re like me who had no clue). Second trip we narrowed it down to allergies meaning he now gets all new food and starts daily medication for about two months. So far he’s on board with his food, so I’m just waiting to see how he takes to the medicine which is still preparing for shipment.

SIDE NOTE: For anyone worried about the little guy; I assure you he’s doing fine. Even as I type this his top half is draped over my lap, a paw resting on my left hand while he purrs away.

Input from my Partner

So when I asked my partner what first came to mind when I said International Cat Day, I was given the following response: you get your cat, put a little beret on him, and have him say “baguette”, “croissant” or “omelette du fromage”.

Why? To make it international.

Photo by Jacalyn Beales on Unsplash

8 August

How to Get from Dublin to Miami (like the pro you are)

a) arrive at the terminal around 4:30 a.m. to retrieve your passport

b) find out you can’t retrieve your passport until 8:15ish since your flight isn’t until 11:40

c) sit in the airport questioning your every decision

d) take a nap

e) wake up to find none of your stuff has been stolen and you really have to pee

f) go back to sleep, so you don’t have to worry about needing to pee

g) wake up around 8:00 (without the alarm) and call immigration

h) retrieve your passport from the friendly lady in immigration who let’s you know, “You could come back next week if you wanted”

i) go to the other terminal to check in for your flight and find a large line

j) wait in said line for an hour watching Bob’s Burgers

k) find out one of your bags is overweight and throw stuff into your carry on which still puts you 2.7 kg over

l) dance inwardly when the check in lady only charges you for 2 kg

m) reorganize your carry on so your laptop is padded for the gods and queue for the security check

n) breeze through security and FINALLY go to the bathroom around 10

o) buy a salmon bagel since you haven’t eaten yet

p) wait for the plane to board and pass out almost immediately after take off

q) wake up in Iceland!!!

r) go to the cleanest bathroom you’ve ever been graced to use in your life

s) kill four hours via Netflix, Board Kings, emails, messaging friends

t) wait in line to board

u) take a bus to the plane and then board via stairs like an old school movie star

v) survive an eight hour flight with mild motion sickness on the landing

w) book it to immigration and declare a ham and cheese baguette you bought on the flight

x) get led to a separate area from the rest of the passengers to get your luggage and wait ages for your luggage to come through

y) go through the secondary agricultural baggage check to review the baguette situation

z) meet your aunt outside and go home

**did you know ham from Ireland is not allowed into the U.S., but ham from Iceland is? no. i bet you didn’t. 

O.P. 5 August 2017

Today Is…

Oyster Day!

Okay, so right off the bat a single question came to mind when I saw this on the calendar: do most people consider oysters an aphrodisiac or…?

Now you may be wondering why this was the first place my mind went and to be honest- we’ll never truly know. I suspect it’s because that’s the only trivia I knew, hence why I went on a deep dive because I had some questions!

My first question: Where did this originate? The answer: No one knows.

My second question: What’s some cool trivia on oysters?

  • they have
    • gills
    • colorless blood (hemolymph)
  • location determines their flavor
  • they contain all of the essential amino acids (there are 9)
  • they are rich in minerals, omega-3 fatty acids, and protein

My final takeaway from everything is simple: I now have a hankering for oysters AND I really want to know public opinion on the aphrodisiac angle…

Photo by Aime Cox-Tennant on Unsplash

5 August

Mounting the Camel

Hasn’t it just been a TIME, lately?

Don’t worry though. The last thing I plan on doing is rehashing everything going in the world over the past several months as well as within my own ‘personal sphere’. I’ll keep it sweet and say that for me this time has been akin to riding the Tower of Terror except it’s broken, so you never exactly reach the top and might hang out a bit, but always drop dramatically without fail (is anyone surprised? probably not). For the time being though I’d say I’m taking the stairs back to the ground level…but I’m prepared for a Room 1408 twist at any moment.

In other news, I’d like to thank past me for scheduling re-posts from my old blog because seeing notifications pop on my screen was a cool surprise that brought real pep to my day- after initial confusion. I ended up spending my lunch reading through previous posts and was reinvigorated to- you guessed it! Mount the camel.

SIDE NOTE: I’m a huge fan of camels to the point where my partner surprised me with camel feeding…I’m about them.

Yackety-Yak: Supporting Role

Sometimes I think I’m an asshole.

I mean, if you’re asking then the answer is yes. Everyone is an asshole sometimes.

Maybe, but this situation is different.

Oh? Do tell.

…Do you ever feel like you aren’t the main character in your story?

Um…I might need you to explain that a little more.

Okay, so it’s like this this: I feel like I’m a supporting character in my own story. My stuff tends to sit on the back burner for someone else’s to take the forefront.

And is this for everyone…?

Mainly one person, I guess.

Okay…So you’re prioritizing another person above yourself? Because that’s normal in variations.

Um- yes and no. It’s like I consider their events more important…than mine? And I feel compelled to do what I can to help because I care for them, but then after the fact it’s like I’m just the remainder.

Ah. You’re consumed, basically.

I guess so? I just feel like I can cover my base stuff usually pretty easily and I want to be there for them.

Sounds to me like you know you can cover your base responsibilities with a certain level of effort and then you’re putting the rest into this other person-

But those base responsibilities don’t really require a lot in my opinion.

It doesn’t matter. If you’re letting all of your excess effort go into another person then you are a supporting character in your own life. It’s one thing to care for someone, but it’s an entirely different thing if it’s to your detriment. I mean, is this even being returned?

I’d say sporadically…?

There’s a good chance it’s because they’re treating themselves like the main character in their lives OR are at least prioritizing themselves above you- neither of which are bad things. Everyone has to prioritize themselves at varying rates for their situation and that includes you as well as me.

But-

Listen, I’m not saying to cut them out of your lives or something drastic here. All I’m saying is to maybe be less consumed with this person and focus more on yourself. Imagine what you could do if you took even forty percent of that effort and applied it to you or even other people?

Yeah, but whenever I start to go down that general line of thinking I start to feel like an asshole; as if it implies I’m keeping score or not doing things genuinely.

…Do you think this has anything to do with your friend’s death three years ago?

Perpetual Bridesmaid

I have a problem where I get overly invested in people (particularly men), then I end up coming on too strong or just messing up in general which leaves me right where I started: a perpetual bridesmaid.

Now ‘Perpetual Bridesmaid’ is a title I’ve sort of given myself lately. When I first started using it, it was a way to make light of my mounting insecurities in the dating realm. My attempt at self-deprecating humor, ladies and gents. I know I already tapped into physical insecurities in a prior post, so I’m going to bypass straight into personality flaws (hooray).

I don’t know if it’s just me, but sometimes I catch myself trying to be ‘perfect’ when I’m with someone. Should I be doing that? Of course, not. It just screams Bad News Bears. Still, I catch myself falling into the habit. I guess the truth is:

I don’t think I can attract a man on anything besides looks and with that in mind it’s easier to just try and mold myself a bit to their preferences… 

YES, I KNOW IT’S BAD. I’M GETTING TO THE BETTER PART. RELAX. 

Anyway, instead of using this title to playfully hide my fears, now it’s not even something I say anymore. It’s simply just a thought. A thought that peps me up and it made the jump in the blink of an eye.

I was commuting home from work and passed at least five adorable couples who looked like they’d been ripped right off the silver screen. I immediately had two lines of thought: 

“Awe, I wish I had something like that…Too bad I’m doomed to be perpetually single…” & “I wonder how many bridesmaids dresses I can collect? 27 is the number to beat.” 

Just like that it felt as if the dark cloud so casually perched above me faded away.

Side note: I’d been starting to feel down because I felt the guy I was beginning to have feelings for had decided I wasn’t worth it anymore.  

With the cloud gone; however, I suddenly didn’t have any negative thoughts weighing on me about my status. Would he decide I’m not worth it? Maybe. Will I never get married? Maybe. Do bridesmaids always have the funniest tag lines in the movies? Yep. 

O.P 22 July 2017

Insecurities? Eh…70/30

I think it’s safe to say no one is 100% satisfied with themselves.

This isn’t to say there aren’t people who are happy with their appearance or behavior, but it’s our curse to unnecessarily scrutinize every little potential fault. Whether we come to love our flaws is a case by case basis and everyone has something they fixate on.

For me it’s everything above my neck- save my eyes.

I’ve had bad skin for as long as I can remember and I’ve tried just about everything I can to temper it. Some months are better than others and every time I think I’ve FINALLY cracked the code, my skin just goes: HA! That was cute! Havin’ a laugh?

Thus the battle rages on as I continue to try and figure out how to manage my ghastly skin. Truthfully I’m aware I’ll never have perfect, glowing skin. My skin tone is particularly susceptible to scarring and discoloration- something I never really noticed until my skin started to clear. I always held the idea I would be happy once my acne cleared and I still do. Scarring and discoloration can fade with time and given how obsessed I am with beauty products, it gives me the perfect excuse to pamper myself! [not that I needed one] Still, there’s always the chance I’ll become obsessed with clearing my dark marks, but I really hope it doesn’t reach the level of insecurity I have with acne. Confidence is something I love to see in others and it can definitely be said I’m more of a “do as I say” versus “do as I do” person when it comes to it- although I have noticed that turning around.

I used to be the person who was confident in front of people I knew in an attempt to pave the way for them to be more confident. I think there’s something to “faking it ‘till you make it” because it definitely did help create my base level of confidence. A base that’s since grown as I’ve grown. I still have insecurities obviously, but at the end of the day we’ve got what we’ve got. Do I think I have a pretty face? Not really. Other people do though and whether they’re just saying it to be nice or not…that’s fine. There’s always someone who’s going to be drawn to things you don’t see as good about yourself- whether it’s for the right reasons is a conversation for another day.

Anyway, this went off course and now I don’t know how to finish it.

O.P. 21 July 2017

Fear

It’s remarkable both how swift and unforgiving fear can be.

A solitary night enjoying YouTube videos shattering at the random outreach of another.

Slowly descending the stairs I make sure doors are locked and blinds shut. My feline lingers in my shadow, hesitating to follow, but rushing upstairs once I beckon.

A hesitant call to my partner temporarily eases my nerves- in minutes they are driving down. They keep me on the line.

I’m sitting in a corner of the office when they arrive. The house is dark and though I hear my partner’s voice…I say nothing.

As they enter the room, a dim computer screen reveals my spot in the corner.

For several moments we sit in silence. I can see them struggling to find words of comfort, but I don’t need them.

I’m just happy they came.