sparkly things and some pretty rocks

the lobby at the cosmopolitan hotel, las vegas

the lobby at the bellagio

hard rock café, the strip, las vegas

the pat tilman memorial bridge, from the hoover dam

red rocks at red rock canyon

silly sisters at the grand canyon

the mountain view from the car

bazinga lunch boxes, sheldon and howard bobble heads, and soft kitties

hey guess what i’m home and GOAL-LESS (sort of)

Thank you, little Delta screen, for illustrating my journey so blurrily!

I actually love my 7-8 hour flight home because it gives me time to reflect, plan, and watch free movies. I made a list of goals, and am currently in the process of destroying that list.

Wait what? Yes. Destroying my to do list. As satisfying as it is to check things off every day, without that pleasure, I find value and joy in the things themselves. It wasn’t a goal to wake up before six every morning (thanks, England time), but I do, and I love it, so I have continued.

Turning some goals into habits is easier than others. I do my Rosetta Stone as early as possible in the morning because I know I’ll keep putting it off otherwise, but when I do actually do it I feel accomplished. Coursework is harder to incorporate because it’s unpredictable and time-consuming.

My little secret to somewhat success: identify pit-falling habits and avoid them. Watching TV. Playing the Sims. Eating sugar. These seemingly harmless activities spiral into a time-sucking energy-draining loop. In some cases it’s easier to not start than to stop.

Off to my early morning of productivity. Cheerio! (I need to stop saying “cheers” in this country…)

 

term flies when you’re having fun

Michaelmas 2011 is over. Officially over today. That was eight weeks. Nine, if you count the scramble of 0th week in which I revised for collections and all my friends came back to town.

It was a weird combination of familiarity and adjustment – without last year’s madness of rushing between activities and trying to make friends I had more time to focus and enjoy the things I figured out by the end of last year. Instead of counting the days before I would be able to stop writing essays and running to and from the library, I saw them slipping away, wishing I had more to see plays and drink more tea and spend more time with people.

Moving to Iffley Road from the center of town stretched time, as I’ve had to account for travel a lot more. I’ve come to enjoy it, but that certainly took time. And while I enjoy spending time with people, doing so disrupts my summery schedule of being in bed by eleven, leaving time for evening yoga and reading.

And blogging. Daily blogging was one of the most enjoyable parts of my summer, but I simply didn’t have the time to schedule in a meaningful post each day during term. Perhaps now that my time is more my own – very soon I will no longer be in walking distance of my best friends and an ocean away from many of them – I will rebuild the habit.

I did document some of the highlights of the term here on this fluffy plus edgy thing. Although I was ill for a lot of the term (a cold that was almost gone every time I went climbing at the weekend that uh, returned…), I did develop a strategy to combat colds. I went climbing a lot and it was fun and pretty. I spent an entire week celebrating Halloween, and sewed a costume to emulate one of my favorite characters ever on the day itself (KIKI!). I invested an entire pound on fairy lights for my room that never fail to make me happy. After a year of obsessing over Kazbar, the gang may have relocated to Atomic Burger. They have a sticker book after all, and we all know that I can’t resist a checklist.

But here’s the stuff that I left out.

I baked at least once a week and even made a coupla fancy cakes. Baking is one of my favorite things to do so I’m pleased that I made myself make time for it each week. And that I had funky people to bake for:

We went to the Turf and had marshmallows (woohoo!).

I finally took my Sorting Hat quiz and was placed in my rightful home (possibly the highlight of the term. Year. Life.):

I acquired a t-shirt and a sticker in the most painful way I ever have. By beating/eating Godzilla.

Sister came to visit for the weekend and we went to Bath and London and that was cool.

And yesterday was CarKaXandramas:

 

And now? Now it’s almost time to go home and celebrate Christmas, with an airplane journey in between in which to plan what I can realistically accomplish over the vacation :) Happy advent!