Summer, all hot and steamy, provided me with a preview of how life is going to be going forward: no kids, two dogs, cereal for supper. The time has truly arrived! My new normal is underway.
Now to fill my days.
I have a list of things I’d like to do this fall. Some are repeats of my summer plans that encountered some unexpected bumps. I had surgery on my pinky finger that went well and requires weekly physical therapy and then I contracted a bacterial infection in my leg that drastically limited my activities for well over a month!
Enjoy my backyard | Not much beats a steaming cup of tea first thing in the morning out on the deck – or a glass of wine (now sparkling water with cranberry, see below) – on the patio in the evening. The sights and sounds are simply idyllic. It is a tranquil and lovely space. I’m hoping to extend and enjoy the season as long as I can!
Spend less | This was an expensive few months with the back yard renovation, furniture purchased for inside and out, a recent trip to Scotland and some courses I’m taking. Now to put a kibosh on my own spending. Amazon and Indigo are just too easy – click, click, click, buy. The reality is I already have everything I need! Time to add things to a cart and only push the ‘buy’ button once a month. I am imposing a lengthy cool off period!
Go to the aquarium in Toronto | The jellyfish are my favourite – mesmerizing with their grace and inner glow.
Visit the farmers market | Time to head to George Street before the market shuts down for the season on October 6th. I’d love to learn how to make pickles or preserve beets maybe make some jam? Which leads to plans to head to a few Christmas craft markets.
Weekend or longer travel | I have just returned from an incredible visit to Scotland with my sister. Next up? Jackson’s Point for a writing retreat in then off to Charleston, SC (fortunately not affected by the recent hurricane) for my Mastermind Intensive course. I have ideas for other weekend visits before the snow flies, and maybe even a few after.
Take a class | As a result of the intense Essentials of Editing course I took at the University of Toronto, I’m now signed up to take the Creative Writing Certification course – online as well as at the St. George and Mississauga campuses. 120 hours in the next 5 years. I can do it! (I’m also signed up for Brian Henry’s creative writing courses, my Mastermind Intensive with Colette Baron-Reid and more Sound Reiki.)
Binge watch a series | I’m thinking Ozark since I was such a fan of Bloodline and I’ve been told it’s a natural follow up. Though I’m also interested in The Americans. Not enough time in the day! Suggestions welcome. My suggestions for you? Both from Amazon: The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel (Rachel Brosnahan is remarkable and refreshing) and Jack Ryan (John Krasinski is exactly who I pictured when I read the books years ago.)
Go to the butterfly conservatory in Niagara | This is an outing that has been on my list for years and I really just have to get myself, and my camera, down there.
Spend hours reading | Over the last few months I came to realize (through writing courses and groups) I have very little knowledge of recent Canadian literature and started my own personal CanLit Challenge. It is overwhelming but I endeavour to be undaunted. At least that was the plan, but now my course reading is taking up too much time. I have all the CanLit books in a pile waiting to be re-visited when I can – in March, earliest.
Spend whole days writing | But before that, I have to come up with a plot. I have the characters, the story, the setting, but that’s not enough. I need hooks and stakes. And then I have to amp them up.
Host a gathering | I enjoy gathering friends together for fun afternoons of conversation and laughter. I’m thinking I’d like to host an Oracle Card party for 6-8 people to share the profound gift I’ve received from oracle cards. Maybe even make it a monthly event. If anything is going to create an environment for conversation and learning it’s a deck of cards! (If interested in oracle cards – and don’t live close – maybe take a look at Colette’s current FREE workshop!)
Take myself to the movies | With a big bag of popcorn at the the VIP cinema, I hope to see a few shows in the next couple of months.
Sleep more | I do my best to get 8-hours a night and my Fitbit tracks my progress for me. I’m doing well regarding quality of sleep, not length. I average closer to 7-hours – it’s not enough. I’m hoping with slower cooler days I might get myself into cozy hibernation mode and take advantage with some shut-eye.
Wine detox | In order to participate fully in my life I need to be present – at all times. I drink wine out of habit not out of any real desire. Wine is the one thing I’ve found that slows my brain at the end of a full day. I’m hoping my new meditations 2x 20-minutes every day will be more effective at slowing the spin cycle that is my mind.
Turn down the noise | I’m not the only one who is exhausted by the volume (quantity and level) of negativity shouted via news and social media from morning through night. It is overwhelming – and I’m a dedicated news junkie and creative magpie! I need to slow down, be quiet, identify my priorities and limit my choices – much like I do when I want to be more creative – in order to focus on the things that fill me with the good stuff and eliminates stress and anxiety. Step one: limit media (though not so much as to be ignorant – that would be silly – but enough to dull the roar!)
This list will be added as a compliment to my regular practice of:
Personal training twice a week with Jackie (and my trying to remember to stretch in between sessions)
Walking the dogs, though reduced now having a yard, at least twice each day – more for me than them
Daily meditation, journaling and oracle card pull
Regular blogging (which will include a redesign of this website to reflect my new photography focus)
Chiropractor and massage appointments
Daily writing of my novel-in-progress, as well as weekly writing classes
Household chores and projects (which has a list of its own)
Regular lunch and dinner dates with girlfriends
Memory keeping projects to be kept up-to-date from inception to finish.
I am beyond relieved that I can now open the back door to the yard to let the beasties out rather than having to leash them up and walk six times every day! The project was a long one (April 9 – August 10) with only one scheduled work day lost to weather. The summer was hot and steamy and there wasn’t much rain – at least during the work week.
What are you up to this autumn? Are there new adventures or do you settle into a nice routine?