Year of Reclaiming: Update

Today is March 1st. Wow I can’t believe it! We are already into our third month of 2016. This year is going by so fast. I’m not really complaining–getting into March means getting to warmer weather, and warmer weather always makes me feel better. I was out walking a dog yesterday and the sky was so blue without a cloud, the birds singing merrily as the sunshine down on my face…I couldn’t help but just sit and enjoy it as I let Katie run around the dogpark. Normally I read or write while I let her play with other dogs (while keeping an eye on her, of course), but yesterday I just…sat there and enjoyed the coming Spring. ❤

Being that we are entering the third month, I thought I’d do a small update on how my Year of Reclaiming is going. Both to let you guys have a peak into it, and so that I can keep track of my progress myself. I want to make sure I stay on task–something that’s actually not that easy to do. I don’t forget per se, but I do get caught up in the “make sure everyone likes me” kind of mindsight that I’m trying to shed. It’s been my way of living for so many years that it’s become sort of my default.

So, updates!

A few weeks ago I decided I’d go back to being vegetarian.I had been vegetarian (and nearly vegan) for about 3-4 years before I moved here and I felt absolutely amazing during that time, physically. When I moved I gave that up, for several years. Or at least that’s what I told myself. In reality I gave it up because I was worried Angelo (my boyfriend) would find it too difficult to live and cook for a vegetarian when he himself was very much a meat eater. It’s really easy for you to have different eating styles when you’re long distance and not have them effect each other. But living with someone, eating nearly every meal together, and having to cook foods that are either totally separate or where it’s easy to opt out of the meat option (like homemade tacos, for example) is entirely different game. I love Angelo, and I didn’t want to cause any disruption in our life together. So I gave up being vegetarian. I had a lot of tasty food in the past  2 1/2 years, but overtime I started to wish I was vegetarian again. I noticed a difference in how I felt–less energy, more lethargic, more cramps during a certain time of the month–and I didn’t like it. So, one day a few weeks ago, I stopped eating meat. I feel a lot better than I did!

The gorgeous weather we had yesterday gave me a really bad case of Spring fever…even though Spring hasn’t officially arrived yet. So I started thinking about what I wanted to garden. I live in a very urban area, and the only place outdoors I can have any kind of plant is on the fire escape out back, so I have to be very selective in what I grow. Herbs are easy enough, but I also very much want to grow some of own food. One thing I was working towards before I moved here (and even a little after) was being totally self sustaining…at least in the warmer months. I grew a variety of plants–tomatoes, strawberries, about a dozen herbs, peppers, eggplant, peas. I had more space then, though not nearly enough required to actually grow enough of those items to sustain two people through several months. I have even less space now, but I’m determined to make it work! The fire escape gets afternoon sun (it faces West), so herbs and such will be grown back there. I *might* try a tomato plant, but I really don’t have high hopes for it. It feels foolish to even try, to be honest. I have three windows in my living room that face east. They get a little bit of morning sun, but are otherwise shaded. I can’t do any window boxes as there are no ledges or anything to hang them on, but I can put tables in front of them. I’ve already done that to an extent–I have a succulent, an aloe plant, and some Tulips there now. I’m thinking there I might be able to grow some lettuce and a one or two other things. It’s kind of fun trying to plan out an urban garden like this. Though when your goal is to be totally self sustaining, it’s not feasible in the long run. This was never meant to be our dream house anyway–just a stepping stone along the way.

I’ve begun tending Brigid’s flame again. That was actually one of the very first things I did this year. I’ve been a follower of Hers for several years, and been a Flametender for more than half o them. I don’t know exactly why I stopped…I think maybe I just got too caught up in the life here and didn’t slow down to pay attention to my spirituality. I bring this up because the other day was a Flameshift, and while running to the store with a friend to get a bag of nuts (I used to always carry a bag of nuts in my bag with me as a snack–delicious and a source of protein!) I got a story idea. When we got back to his house I wrote it down really fast, but have yet to work out the details of it, though I’m quite excited to do so! This is relevant because I’m writing more! Still not as much as I’d like to be–I’d eventually like to cultivate a daily practice, something simple like at least a thousand words a day–but more than I was before. This makes me ecstatic because the way I wish to earn the money I do need is via writing. I’m slowly working towards the life I truly want to lead and it feels so good. So very good.

Along with writing I’m also reading more. I used to feel guilty getting so engrossed in a book that I stayed there for hours. But then I realized that’s what Angelo does with video games (he’s been playing the new Fire Emblem nearly nonstop since it’s release last week), and there’s nothing wrong with enjoying something so much that you block out the rest of the world for a short period of time.There’s also nothing wrong with doing something you love. I finished Miss Peregrine’s Home For Peculiar Children in a matter of days because I allowed myself to get lost in it. A dear friend saw my review of it and wanted me to have the sequels (it’s a trilogy!) so as a gift she sent me the collector’s edition of the novels. They came with a small pack of photos of pecular children, which is just the coolest thing ever! Yesterday I began reading the second book in the series, Hollow City. I’ll post a review of it as soon as I’m done (and will also post a review of third book, Library of Souls, when I’m done with it). This friend has also begun reading the first book herself. ❤

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Other things I still want to incorporate back into my life: Yoga, Bellydance, and Hiking. Not necessarily in that order. I’d only just gotten into hiking before I moved, and since I do walk dogs everyday, I’ll probably focus on the other two more.

Last night I posted a picture on Instagram of a candle in which my Ganesha statue (given to me by one of my best friends) totally photobombs. It got me thinking about Ganesha and His role in everything. I think it was meant to be that Kevin gave me a few statues of Him at the beginning of the year. Ganesha is a god that I’d previously had very limited interaction with, but after Kev gave me those statues I took to carrying the small wooden one with me almost everywhere, and I’ve begun thinking about His role in my life. Ganesha is known as a remover of obstacles (among other things). I offer Him thanks for helping remove whatever blocks were in place that were preventing me from living my life the way I truly wish to. I can’t help feeling like He has a hand (or two) in this and it’s much appreciated.

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