Tuesday, August 22, 2017

Shaving my Legs

The hair on my legs grows very, very fast. I have to shave my legs (knees and down) every single day in the summer. As such, I go through A LOT of shaving gel. The most recently purchased container developed an issue almost immediately. If I pushed with all my might I could get a tiny little stream of gel. It took ages to get enough and it hurt my thumb. But I was reluctant to throw it away (recycle it) and waste the money. Which of course got me thinking about how many of the damn containers I'm buying and putting out in the world to be recycled (I hope). There has to be a better way to do this. One that costs less and has a lower impact on the environment.

So I posted in an AP/Natural Living group asking for ideas. Because if you need a solution to any kind of problem these folks are on it. I made it clear I was not looking for a recipe because making my own shaving cream? NOPE, never gonna happen.

The majority of the responses were in favor of just using regular bar soap. I'm not enthusiastic about it, but I will try it. The response I expected was to use conditioner. I'd heard that one before and had done it in a pinch when I failed to purchase more shaving gel in time. I tried it again, and while it got the job done I don't think I'd want to use my regular conditioner. It would not be cost effective since I would go through it so quickly. Maybe if I bought a super cheap conditioner that I would never put in my hair.

One woman suggested something I never would've thought of: aloe vera gel, the kind you put on sunburns. Interesting. And it just so happens that I have half a bottle of it left under the sink by my husband when he moved out. It's quite a few years old and nothing I would ever use for its intended purpose. After all, I do everything in my power to avoid the cursed orb, so sunburn isn't something I have to deal with. So that's what I'm using right now. I didn't even have buy anything and I'm using up something that would've gone in the trash otherwise. Win-win.

Thursday, August 17, 2017


Eating: I went out to lunch today, an extremely rare occurrence. A friend from high school is in town for a few days, so we enjoyed a quick visit over quesadillas (me) and a burrito (him).

Watching: I watched the first episode the The Kettering Incident, a BBC show, without knowing much about it. It takes place in Tasmania (!) and the first episode was interesting and intense, but seems to be headed in a direction I may not want to explore. Not sure how much effort I'll put into continuing this.

Reading: Yesterday I started a new book, The Aviator's Wife by Melanie Benjamin. I missed my lunchtime reading today because of my lunch plans, but I look forward to reading more tomorrow.

Playing: Outside, whenever possible. The mosquitos are devouring my son, even with me doing nothing but watching for them. Sneaky little bastards.

Saying: "You are brave. You are kind. You are smart. You are sweet. You are funny. You are silly." One night when I was putting my son to bed I decided I needed to include some affirmations into our goodnight routine. I hadn't thought of them in advance so these are the ones that rolled off my tongue in the moment. They aren't necessarily what I would have decided on with more consideration, but they've stuck.

Feeling: Tired. I feel like I've been in survival mode for three years now. I am always tired.

Looking forward to: Cooler weather, especially cooler nights. Last night it dropped down to 50 and it was delightful.

What are you up to these days?

Friday, August 11, 2017

Friday Five: Self-Care

I'm not a fan of the term "self-care," which is so widely used these days. For me it's more about staying sane. I know I've talked about this before, but here are some of the things that help me keep my head above the water:
  1. Chocolate. See also: ice cream, cake, cookies.
  2. Starbucks Green Tea Lattes. Yes, I spend too much money at Starbucks. But if it helps me be a better person/mom, maybe it's worth it. It's not frickin' heroin or Jack Daniels, after all.
  3. TV. Three days a week I get to watch TV for an hour or two. I unplug my brain and stare at the idiot box. Not thinking is nice sometimes.
  4. Leaving the office for 59 minutes most days during lunch. Mostly to read, with a short walk thrown in.
  5. Target. This one's a bit of a stretch, but I was really struggling to come up with a 5th item. Target (easily combined with #2) is somewhere to go when the weather is not ideal, or we need to get out of the house, or I need some chocolate (#1).
If you're wondering why I haven't included any outdoorsy type activities (hiking!) on this list, it's because while I firmly believe getting my son outside is super important, it is currently far from relaxing. It's more like wrangling and watching for mosquitoes and very little looking up or around or noticing my surroundings. It's a lot of effort.

Thursday, August 03, 2017

Lunchtime Reading

I'd earned a free drink from Starbucks ages ago, but I hadn't been in a healthy enough state to enjoy it. Finally today I felt up to it (although my sinuses may disagree) and zipped down the hill on my lunch break. I'm still reveling in the joys of the mobile app on which I can place my order and pick it up at the counter without standing in line or interacting with people (the horror). Or at least that's how it was previously. Today, sadly, I was forced to speak with a barista to retrieve my drink, which I could see in a newly designated area out of my reach. People must have been stealing drinks, thus spoiling some of the appeal of mobile ordering. Crappy people, always ruining good stuff for the rest of us.

After securing my green tea frapp I walked back up the hill in search of an unoccupied bench in the shade. I passed a good handful positioned on the hill at an angle. No thanks. I've done enough camping in my lifetime with the tent set up on a slight hill to know that a similarly situated bench would irk me to no end. I can't be sliding off one end of the bench for my whole reading session.

This book is bewildering. It is interesting, occasionally humorous and also a bit dull at times. I'm just shy of halfway through it and frankly, can see no real point to it's meandering existence. Hopefully this becomes more clear SOON.

Wednesday, August 02, 2017

2017 To-Do List: July

  1. Rearrange/clean the family room to make it a usable space 
    1. Move books down there to make it a library/family room?
  2. Get rid of items we don't use and/or don't like 
    1. clothes
    2. furniture *
    3. kitchenware
  3. Read at least 24 books - 20/24 **
  4. Develop a system to ensure bills get paid in a timely fashion DONE 
  5. Hang wall art 
  6. Hang some sort of window treatment (curtains? blinds?) in family room DONE - 3/19/2017
  7. Blog at least once a week - 29/52 
  8. Purchase new bras
  9. Purchase new underwear DONE - 2/5/2017
  10. Go on a date
  11. Go swimming, preferably in a natural body of water
  12. Take my son camping in a tent in the woods for at least one night
  13. Frame a picture of my son for my desk at work DONE - 1/17/2017
  14. Go to the Adirondacks
  15. Take my son to the zoo DONE - 1/14/2017
  16. Install anti-tip straps on the TV
  17. Open a 529 account for my son DONE - 3/8/2017
  18. Visit Second Home Nature Center at least once a month - 7/12 ***
* I finally got rid of the coffee table and end tables that have been hogging up space in the garage. This past weekend we were expecting no rain so my boss suggested I put them at the curb. I decided it was worth a shot as the worst that could happen was me wasting 5 minutes hauling them down and back if it didn't work. I carried them down Saturday morning while playing outside with my son, but I hadn't thought to make a FREE sign in advance. When we went in for lunch I made the sign, planning to dash out as soon as he was down for his nap. But alas, they were gone by then. Success! But I can't mark this as done because there are other pieces of furniture that still need to be evicted.

** Dang! I finished 4 books in July. Go me.

*** Our monthly trip to the nature center didn't go as planned. My son wanted to go inside (ugh), but I eventually got him headed down a trail (not the one I'd hoped for but any trail is better than going inside). But after about 50 yards he turned around and insisted on going back. I decided it wasn't worth the fight, so back we went. We putzed around the flower gardens, sat in the Adirondack chairs, and climbed on rocks. It wasn't what I had in mind, but we were still outside and that's the important part (I guess).