Oh boy.

this upcoming Thanksgiving dinner may be the highlight of my month.
yes, i'm working on my lit review.
yes, i'm still doing my pilates workouts.
yes, i know that there are more important things to think about. 
but the only words going through my brain right now are BROWN BUTTER. CANDIED BACON. PUMPKIN PIE. FREE FLOW WINE.
it's embarrassing how many times i've texted dave a countdown to our thanksgiving dinner.
like, hourly.

i know the absence of family and friends (thank God for Dave!) will hit me like a rock on thanksgiving, so i'm especially thankful for something to look forward to.
we've hosted the past two thanksgiving dinners, and i still love perusing for recipes (some eats i would be making if i were hosting thanksgiving: mains, sides, and treats to take home).
 but this year, it'll be a refreshing change to just show up for our reservation.
hooray for an international thanksgiving celebration!


I can do anything for 40 minutes.

That's what I tell myself when I'm teaching, when I'm doing CrossFit-esque workouts, when I'm paper-writing. And I'm usually successful.
Forty is my magic number.
This week, I'm starting a new workout plan: Slim & Strong in Six.... a six-week online Pilates program with four 40-minute workouts a week. I'm a person who needs the structure of an online class, who needs structure in general. This program is so perfectly timed: right before and through the holiday season/ busiest part of the semester when stress relief is so necessary.
Then tonight, I listened to a message by one of my favorite writers, Shauna Niequist. Her message on friendships, on trust and truth, on becoming more and more like Christ, was so dead on.  In the message, she mentions giving up negative words for lent. For forty days, she gave up gossiping, complaining. About anything or anyone. She talked about how hard it was. Negative words are sneaky. I've noticed in my life, how prone I am to negative words, how easily I complain about work, waiting in line, taxi drivers. How easily I can use sarcasm and assign blame. I think this is a good a time as any to begin to change that. So here's to forty days of no negative words, starting today.

I'm excited about these baby steps towards improvement. Physically. Spiritually.


"It’s all a matter of paying attention, being awake in the present moment, and not expecting a huge payoff. The magic in this world seems to work in whispers and small kindnesses."
β€”Charles de Lint

quote via this is glamorous

I like the idea of this, this taking advantage of the present. This being awake.
Because my work day is broken into 40 minute periods, I have a hyperawareness of time. I value this time. I know how much I can get done in just five minutes.
And so the days go by slowly, and so do the weeks.
And nothing big happens, except that each week, I get the work done that I need to do.
I like working. I like feeling like I've accomplished something with my day, even just a lot of little things. It's about using the time that God gave me. It's about putting my head down and doing what I'm here to do. And then, it's about looking up and appreciating the sunshine. And the students who say hi in the hallway. And the solitude of that afternoon getaway to Starbucks where the barista makes the latte perfectly, extra hot and frothed to the brim.