Saturday, January 5, 2013

Good-bye 2012! So Glad I Knew Ye...

I often feel like the years go by and not much happens, nothing much changes. I'm sort of alright with that because I like my life. But then I run into people and they inquire "What's new?" and I can't think of a thing to say.

Not that much did change this past year, certainly nothing drastic, but some things were certainly out of the ordinary.
  • Husband spent more than half of the year traveling back and forth between here and Japan. That was different for both of us - he got to experience living in Japan for weeks at a time; I got to experience being on my own for the first time in ten years. 
  • Husband and I had some vacation time in Japan together which was an unforgettable experience, and we definitely plan to go back some day.
Those were the big events. Some of the smaller stuff - while Husband was away, I got to experiment with my diet, going pretty much vegetarian and cutting out wheat & dairy for a while. On his last trip to Japan, Husband experienced a recurrence of an eye condition he had a few years back, so he got to experience a bit of the medical system in Japan and once he got home there were lots of doctor appointments.

It seemed like things had just settled down from that, when our washing machine quit on us and then Husband got sick from a spider bite. Yes indeed, life has been eventful.

Early in December I realized I was missing a piece of jewelery - a square cut emerald ring that Husband bought for me many years ago when he was in Columbia for work. This broke my heart a bit (actually more than a bit, there were tears), I'm still not over it. I walk around the house looking, as if I expect the ring to appear, but it's gone. I don't think there is any point in going into detailed explanation of the series of events. Suffice it to say, this has put a damper on my mood. I know it is just an object, and there are much larger problems out there in the world, but there was a lot of sentimental value there and it hurts.

Moving on, because there is nothing else to be done, we did have an enjoyable holiday season. We both had a couple of weeks off work. Winter actually held off until the evening of my last day of work, and then we had a snow storm. Fortunately, the weather behaved for our trip home to Nova Scotia where we had a wonderful visit with our family there. Then there was another snow storm the day after we returned home, and another on the 30th. Mother Nature packed a whole lot of winter into two weeks.

No big plans for 2013 so far. It seems like Husband may be finished with traveling for a while, which is nice. One of my sisters is coming home for a visit sometime this spring (I miss my sisters!) and it looks like we will be going to Ottawa this summer, though I'm not sure how long of a trip it will be.

I don't really do New Year's Resolutions, but at the same time I have felt over the last few months that I was always waiting for things to settle down so that I could think straight and work on some goals. I was feeling pretty overwhelmed for a while there. So, while I am still somewhat rested from my vacation (I was back to work on the 2nd - that was a bit painful in all honesty), I will try to set out some goals.

Food related:
  • Over the holidays I noticed that I am starting to get eczema on my hands and forearms again, so I think it's time to start watching the diet again with an eye to figuring out the causes. I had cut out both wheat and dairy, but I don't know whether I need to cut out both or just one. I still do not consume much dairy - a little cream in my coffee sometimes (at home I am still using soy), some cheese and butter now and then. Oh, and chocolate. :) Wheat shows up a lot more - it is just so easy to use pasta & bread as components of a meal. I need do some experimenting here.
  • Several years ago now, I was diagnosed with Meniere's Disease. This is an inner ear disease that affects hearing and balance. Many people suffer from severe vertigo. For me, it has mostly affected my hearing. Most of the treatment options seem to be focused on relieving the vertigo and balance issues, there don't seem to be many treatment options to help with the hearing loss. But I was doing some reading recently that said diet can help. The hearing loss I have is permanent, unfortunately, but there may be things I can do to lessen the tinnitus I have in both ears. And I certainly don't want the hearing loss to get worse, so if there is something I can do there to help diet-wise, I should at least try.
  • For a while there last winter, while I was doing my vegetarian and wheat & dairy elimination thing, I got to a place where I found like I was finally at peace with my eating. I felt like I was in control, I was content & satisfied and I was losing weight - slowly, but I was losing. I would like to get there again. 
Fitness related:
  • Mostly just keep doing what I'm doing; I'm liking the Zumba classes and circuit training at home. 
  • Try to remember that I don't have to put pressure on myself to do a particular workout - I can always substitute if I'm not in the mood for a planned activity.
  • A co-worker has been looking into arranging a group yoga class and it sounds like that is going to happen. I enjoy yoga when I'm doing it. I know it has many benefits. Yet I seem unable to stick to a regular practice on my own - I think I give other workouts a higher priority. So many workouts I want to do, so little time! I have no idea yet what type of yoga this will be, or who the instructor will be, but I'm hoping I can take advantage of this class to bring yoga into my life on a regular basis.
  • My office is moving to a new building this spring; I will be back in the building that I worked in for the first 7 years that I lived in this city. I have mixed feelings - I like where we are now, but there are certainly benefits to being in that office complex, one of those being that there is a gym in that building. I used to belong to that gym, but quit once I was no longer working in the building as I was not getting there enough to make it worth. I'm not sure that it would be worth it to join again either, but when the time comes I will look into it. 
Other goals:
  • Finish re-organizing the bathroom. We had to remove the doors from the laundry alcove in the bathroom when we got our new washer & dryer in November. I actually find it much easier with the doors gone, but it also means we can't hide our disorganized mess. So I need to get out and purchase some baskets so that we can store things in a tidy manner.
  • The never ending project of cleaning out the basement. This is a one step forward, two steps back kind of job. Someday I hope to actually get a handle on it.
I had intended to get a start on some of those housekeeping goals over the holidays. Instead I spent most of my vacation like this:

Not me. Obviously. This is my parent's cat. But the general attitude of lazing around? That was me.

This is me, underneath my clowder of cats. When we returned from our trip to NS, these guys were stuck to me like burrs.

There was lots of snowy weather that made hibernation seem quite natural.

The cats are rather put out by all this snow, Frank especially. They don't want to be out in it  at all, not that I blame them. But it makes them a bit crazy at times. 

This is Frank's I-want-something-get-up-and-pay-attention-to-me face. Most of the time he doesn't seem to know what he wants though, so I just follow him around the house; usually we end up at the food dish.

This just made me laugh. I left a blanket and pillow on the love seat, and I come in from the kitchen to see Zappa lounging against the pillow. He looked pretty satisfied with the situation.

Happy 2013 friends!


Amanda said...

I seem to have lost a necklace made of Labradorite that my husband bought for me when we were vacationing in Newfoundland. It is really upsetting to me, too. I know it's just jewelry, but it was sort of my signature piece, I got compliments on it often, and it always reminded me of when we stood at the edge of the beach and turned to face all of North America.

So I understand why you're upset.

Crabby McSlacker said...

What a great post! Love the taking stock of the past year and looking ahead and, as usual, your photos are so wonderful. Makes me SO wish we had a cat in our lives, but alas, now is not the right time.

Hope 2013 is an awesome, awesome year!

the Bag Lady said...

I totally understand being upset about losing your ring! It's a horrible feeling.

Is there a way to hang a curtain in your bathroom to hide the laundry area? Or blinds? Along with the baskets, you could make it look pretty good.

Jess said...

Those cats are adorable! Here's to a better 2013!!! Your Japan trip sounds so interesting!! I bet it was amazing for your husband to work there.

JavaChick said...

Amanda - So sorry to hear about the loss of your necklace and thank you for your kind words of understanding. To quote my husband: "It sucks that it's gone."

Crabby - Thanks for the complement! Cats are great and I adore mine, but it's not always easy to accomodate them, that's for sure.

Bag Lady - Thank you, it is a horrible feeling; that desribes it perfectly. Re: the laundry area, I don't really mind having it open, and I think it will look okay when it's organized. Just a little frustrated at not being able to find what I want for baskets. Who knew it would be so hard? Especially since I already have one that is exactly what I want.

Jess - Husband very much enjoyed the opportunity to spend so much time in Japan; working there gave him a feel for the culture and he found it fascinating. The downside was that we missed each other a lot, so he's pretty happy to be staying home for a while.

Anonymous said...

Hi sis! I miss you too! As much as I wish I could make it home this year it doesn't seem to be in the cards. I've had the same issues getting on track after the holidays, haven't managed a yoga class yet.

I am painting, though, with plans to join an artist's association (as soon as I have completed six works for peer review-gack!). After many year's detour, it seems like it's finally the right time for me. We'll see how it goes.

JavaChick said...

Hello Sister#1! I saw your post on Facebook last night about painting noses. I seem to recall having a hard time with teeth. Glad that you are getting to do stuff like that now! It took me many years to get back to the piano, but I made and am glad I did. I'm sure you will do great!

Husband & I should really plan a trip out west one of these days, it just always seems like there is something else. One of these days though.