25 August 2010

The first step to getting the things you want out of life is this: Decide what you want

It's been an eventful week, to say the least! If the last three days were a lesson in a book, they would be called "Making Choices on the Fly." In a seemingly short period of time, my little mind has spun out of orbit, my stomach's been in knots, and I've barely slept; I've been a serious mess! I've felt, in general, ill-equipped to make decisions, whether they be routine or hugely important. In the end, I've had to be honest with myself about what I really want out of my new life. Bryan and I spent a lot of time before we moved talking about how we wanted/didn't want our lives to change, but in my efforts to find a way to make a living and become some super version of myself, I think I forgot those goals. So, I'm composing a list:

1. I want to live like an urban explorer. I want to walk, bike, and ride public transit as often as is humanly possible and enjoy the time and space I'm traveling through at all times.

2. I want to do work that is meaningful to me and that inspires me to be creative.

3. I want to explore all creative avenues available to me. Music, books, lessons, fabric, paint, language, photos, found objects, plants, animals, ideas, experiences, you name it!

4. I want to take lots of time to spend with my husband; traveling, talking, planning, playing scrabble, and everything else that makes him pretty much the most awesome person ever!

5. I want to spend more time with my friends. I want to cook and entertain more, and I want to surround myself with amazing people and spend more time having great conversations.

6. I want to be responsible with my lifestyle, but I do not want money to be the determining factor in what I choose to do.I strive to become a clever thrifter!

7. I don't want to constantly be in fear of, or stressed about, the outcome of things. There's never an excuse to not have a good time.

...I also want a 1972 El Camino in brown or blue with vinyl upholstery....a girl has to have at least one impossible dream!

22 August 2010

She refused to be bored chiefly because she wasn't boring.

What an exciting weekend! After a lot of exploration, I now feel like I LIVE here! Counting down the fabulous events of the last few days:

1. I set up my sewing machine!!!!! I don't have pictures right now, but I've done several refashions and made one dress from scratch (though I don't really love it). It's so comforting and refreshing to return to my favorite creative hobby!

2. We went to a midnight movie, something I haven't been able to do since we left Kentucky a decade ago! We saw "Human Centipede," and I frankly don't understand why it is becoming a cult classic. It was gross, as anticipated, but otherwise a pretty weak movie. However, I thoroughly enjoyed going to some new-to-us neighborhood bars before the movie and the peaceful walk home at 3am.

3. I bought a bicycle!!!!! Her name is Sally, and Bryan's bike totally has a crush on this green piece of cuteness!Oh, and the skirt I'm wearing in the pic is a refashion from an old cute-but-ill-fitting dress.

4. After buying Sally, we went to the Creole Creamery for some ice cream decadence! They have all sorts of ingenious and unexpected flavors. This is me enjoying the Mascarpone and Lemon Zest flavor! Bryan had two scoops: Oatmeal Cookie and Bosque Pear with Balsamic Caramel!

5. After a much needed nap, we drove out to the marina to watch the sunset! It was beautiful! The skirt in the second pic is also one of my weekend refashions.

6. And after THAT, we walked down to Magazine for a couple of beers while we watched the Saints game. I'm trying my best to become a football fan, but I admit to being a bad student on this front. When we left Ms. Mae's after the game, we stopped in a local gallery opening where we sipped free wine and met some cool artists! It felt awesome to say that we were "from the neighborhood"!

7. Today we rode our bikes to La Boulangerie (MY FAVORITE!!!!) for French pastry and coffee and then continued on to Audubon Park for a leisurely ride! We stopped for a New Orleans style snoball! With the 110 heat index, it was a necessary pitstop!

Aah, now we're home to relax for a bit! I know that not every weekend here will be as exciting as this weekend, but I'm so grateful for a few days of truly getting familiar with my new stomping grounds! I hope your weekend was wonderful too!!!

16 August 2010

To travel hopefully is a better thing than to arrive.

Well, my projected summer of sewing and blogging evolved into hectic weeks of excited planning and frantic packing/unpacking.We're now pretty well settled into our cute New Orleans home. Despite a few bouts of homesickness (or, more appropriately, friendsickness), I am feeling optimistic about my future here. I have a part time teaching job lined up, and have opted to wait a couple of weeks before pursuing a second job. I think I need more time to explore and acclimate myself to the city. The cats, however, have already acclimated completely!

I can't access any of my sewing materials currently, as they are meticulously packed, Tetris-style, in a closet. Realizing how difficult it will be for me to craft in our new place has been truly difficult. I'm in a city where I want to make and wear cute dresses, but it has been approximately 7 weeks since I've sewn a single stitch.

Though our housewarming party was a fabulous time, and I was wicked excited to meet all my new neighbors, I have to admit to catching myself depressed that I can't call one of my Oxford besties to immediately meet me at the City Grocery or in my modest little carport for a cheap beer and chat. Can it be that I've lost my skill for meeting people?

On the upside, Bryan is ecstatic because he's putting the sailboat in the marina today! I admit, when compared to the relatively predictable and calm waters of Sardis, Pontchartrain makes me a bit nervous, but I'm so glad the boat will be easily accessible for daysailing.

We've also dived right in to our neighborhood! The local movie theater shows classics during the day! Last week, Bryan and I saw Casablanca on the big screen! AND they show cult movies at midnight on weekends! Human Centipede is showing this weekend, do I dare? We've explored local bars and restaurants, been to the zoo, compared several shopping options, decorated our little porch with flowers and lights, and pretended to be "real" locals when with tourists on the streetcar!

Dirty Linens Night was this weekend, so we wandered the Quarter, appreciating great art...and free drinks! While there, I saw my first in-person Mardi Gras Indian!

I'm fascinated by, and admittedly under-educated about, this unique tradition. I'm determined to learn more!

We still don't have internet at home, which has actually turned into a great impetus to get me out of the house in the mornings. So, I hang out at the bookstore on St. Charles Ave and drink entirely too much coffee. It's nice. Now I just need a bicycle!