I Blue Myself

I love my birthday. I think having a birthday is awesome, and I will tell literally everyone I encounter that it’s my birthday on that momentous occasion. I don’t care about getting older, I just think it’s neat to have a day where people are nice to you for no reason other than you were born and have managed to stay alive this long.

Also, I like cake and presents. Because who doesn’t like cake and presents? This year, though, I thought I’d like to do it up a little differently than I have in the past. This year, I wanted my birthday present to be taking the family to see Blue Man Group.

Kit took me to see them while we were still in the long distance phase of our relationship, and I was less than thrilled with the idea. I was not at all a performance art kind of girl — still not, really. That was also when Stomp and Bring in ‘da Noise, Bring in ‘da Funk were really big, and I suspected it would be similar, which did not excite me. But Kit had seen the show and assured me it was different than that, and not too performance artsy-pretentious. I trusted him (and figured it was only a couple hours out of my life anyhow), so I agreed to go. I had only one condition: I did not, under any circumstances, want to participate.

We had front row seats, and the show was AMAZING. I even had to participate (because of our seats — the particular component is no longer in the show), and it was totally okay. I’ve wanted to go back for years, but we just never managed to make it happen. Then we had kids and it definitely wasn’t happening while we had two little ones at home.

But the kids are finally old enough, so I really wanted to take them and share the joy. Even though my birthday isn’t until the end of the month, we decided to go ahead and go sooner rather than later (ticket prices are going up in March and I am frugal cheap, so saving the  $$ makes it even more of a present for me). We had thought we’d maybe go in early and wander around the village for a bit, but the weather had other plans. We did try to stop by Dō, but the line even in the freezing rain was regoddamndiculous — I was going to snap a pic, but it didn’t seem prudent to take my phone out in the aforementioned freezing rain. I’d only wanted to go there because I thought it would be a fun treat, but I can make (and eat!) cookie dough any time I like — I don’t need to wait in a crazy line for it.

So we just made our way over to the theater and hung out at KMart of all places until the doors opened (hey, it was warm and dry, which we were not by then). I was worn out and snappy when we finally got to our seats, but sitting and warming up and Kit being awesome really helped a lot, and I was able to relax and thoroughly enjoy the show. We did not have front row seats this time, but the theater is so tiny that there really aren’t any bad seats. The show has changed somewhat in the past 19 years, but it has also retained a lot of the same components. It was just as amazing and fun as I remembered, and seeing and hearing the kids’ joyful reactions was truly the best birthday present ever.

We’re adorbs even when we’re blue.


Feelin’ Good


Yesterday, I turned 43. It’s not a milestone birthday, but for some reason it feels like it’s going to be a big year. I made a lot of changes last year, and I’m feeling pretty good about where my life is headed. So, without further ado, here are my non-concrete goals for 43:

  • Stay on track with conditioning & practice
  • Be neater, at least in the house where it affects other people
  • Eat healthier
  • Cultivate creativity
  • Nurture friendships

Now, I know that goals really need to be concrete to be meaningful and attainable, so I’m going to take those 5 things and try to break it down into doable, concrete chunks:

First, stay on track with conditioning. This is an easy one, but it’s super important because it directly affects my roller derby life. So, the concrete bits are:

  • Exercise at least 4 mornings a week (I’m loving the Hero’s Journey right now, but when I’m done I’m going to start trying out some more of the workouts I have pinned.)
  • Go to the gym at least 4 evenings a week: Two days of cardio, two days of trainer-designed routine
  • Swim at least twice a week
  • Practice skills on skates at least twice a week besides team practice (in the kitchen until the weather gets warmer, then outside somewhere)
  • Keep up with nurse evaluations (quarterly) & free PT re-evals (6-8 weeks) at the gym

Next, be neater, at least in the house where it affects other people. Look, I’m a messy person. I just am. I constantly have piles of stuff around me. I’m a bit  extremely mercurial, so I never know what I’m going to want to read/work on/deal with next, and so I try to keep it all around me so I can grab what I want at a moment’s notice. What this means in practical terms is that there is an entire section of our couch that is unusable because it is covered in my stuff. So I need to:

  • Limit myself to a single project and single book/magazine on the couch at any one time
  • Do quick things immediately (e.g., mending stuffed animals)
  • Put away one project (or book/magazine) before getting out a new project if I want to change up what I’m working on
  • Take tools and supplies back out to the Craft Mine when I’m done using them in the house (this is somewhat weather-dependent, but I think this year we’re going to try to put a little porch/deck out there for me, which means I won’t have to deal with trying to find/balance on wobbly concrete blocks in the snow/rain/dark and that will help tremendously)
  • If I bring a project into the house and then don’t get to it (and won’t in the next day), take it back out to the Craft Mine until I’m actually ready for it

Third: Eat healthier. This one’s pretty easy, I just want to put it down in writing:

  • Eat breakfast every day. Every. Day.
  • No “dessert” on weekdays (candy/cake/hot chocolate/what have you)
  • Eat at least one fruit AND one salad or veg soup every day
  • Pack lunch at least 4 days a week
  • Lean protein + brown rice for lunch before practice
  • Drink at least one 32oz bottle of water every day

Cultivating creativity is up next, and I’ve already told you where I’m starting with that…Make’n’Tell starts tomorrow! (I’m not gonna lie — I forgot about Leap Year for a hot minute this morning and panicked because I hadn’t planned what to do for the day yet.) But there are some other things I want to do, too:

  • Publish two patterns
  • Blog at least twice a week
  • Cook or bake something at least twice a week
  • Sketch at least every other day
  • Journal at least every other day
  • Fully develop two classes and submit them to appropriate venues (and then go teach them if accepted, obviously)
  • Spend at least two hours a week in the Craft Mine (weather permitting)

What I think is going to be the hardest for me is the last one, nurturing friendships. I’ve traditionally not been awesome at this, for a lot of reasons, but I’m going to do my best because I’ve managed to find myself surrounded by several extraordinary groups of people and I genuinely want to make sure I’m giving as much as I’m getting. I’m going to do little baby step concrete goals for this one:

  • reach out to at least one friend every week, even if it’s just to say, “hi, how’re you doing?”
  • wish people Happy Birthday on Facebook (as applicable)

Whew. Looking back at this, it seems like a lot. But I really do think it’s all small and concrete enough that I can do it. And I think this year is going to be the best one yet.