Friday 30 December 2016

Closing a chapter in your life

Life is a long line of goodbyes. We have to say goodbye to our childhood, to friends, to hometowns, to jobs, to relationships, to the youthful skin we used to have (what up with all that extra skin all of a sudden?).
For something that's so much part of everybody's life, we don't handle it very well.
Because here's the thing: Goodbyes are hard. There's no way around it. Exchanging what's familiar and comfortable for something unknown is scary.

What if it's worse than what we had before?
What if it doesn't work out?
What if we don't like it?
What if it's a mistake?

Fear has a field day when we're contemplating a change in our life. It will gleefully list everything that could go wrong, and blithely ignore all that could go right.

Because, here is the other thing:

What if it will be better than what we had before?
What if it does work out?
What if we like it? (Or even love it?)
What if it isn't a mistake?

I have learnt to listen to my gut more than my head. My head is not unlike a hyperactive toddler, easily distracted by different people and opinions, flitting from one thing to another, unable to calm down and focus.
But my gut is immune to the outside noise. It knows when something feels right, and when it doesn't.

Our gut can be easily drowned out by our mind and outside voices. But it's there, in its quiet and unassuming way, and it's trying to tell you something. All you have to do is shut off the outside cacophony of voices, sit down, and listen. Easier said than done, I know.
It can take a while (months, or even years), but if a possible change is looming on the horizon, there will be subtle signs popping up in your life.

You don't want to get up in the morning? That's telling you something.
Delaying your departure to work until the last possible moment? That's telling you something.
You get the opportunity to solve all your money woes in one fall swoop? The only thing standing in your way is your own fear (and other people's opinion)? You would be crazy to say no.
You still have that dream that you have been trying to ignore for years, but that just won't go away? If it hasn't gone away in 27 years, it will probably stick around until the end of your days, either unfulfilled (which is frustrating as hell), or you could finally give it a try.  

Slowly but surely, our stars aligned over this past year and pointed us into a new direction.
Nothing was wrong with our old life - but several things just didn't feel right any more. Neighbours were complaining; we had the great chicken massacre of 2016 (150 chickens were killed by coyotes, a horrifying first); our bank tightened the screws on us; and both our work places had some issues. The signs were there, and in June more signs were added to them: Literal 'For Sale'-signs all over the neighbourhood. The writing was on the wall, and we realized, it was now or never. Some chances only come along once, and if you don't seize it, you may live to regret it.

Of course we thought endlessly about the goodbyes. About possibly losing friendships, leaving a secure job and co-workers that had become as close as family behind, giving up a place we loved so much, about saying goodbye to the stores we know and the restaurants we love. It seems silly now, but I really agonized about not being able to walk through my neighbourhood with the dog anymore. It was a part of my routine for so long, I was worried about having to give it up.
But then I started thinking that one day, I would have to give all of that up anyway. Be it at a point in the future when we would eventually have to move, or when one of us died. This may sound macabre, but somehow that thought really helped me.
Nothing lasts forever.  
Trying to hang on to the past isn't possible. As much as we may want to, life moves on, and we have to move with it, or we will be left behind.

Having reached that conclusion, I decided that doing it now, under our own terms, made much more sense.
Over the last few weeks, as I have begun the next chapter, it was getting easier with each passing day to say goodbye to the old one. It was a precious, beautiful time in the story of my life, and one I'm very grateful for. Some parts and people will hopefully carry over into the next chapter.

At this eve of new Year's Eve, I have been reflecting a lot on the past year, and also the past 37 years of my life. This morning, I turned to Rich and said to him: "I have never been happier."
Despite all the ups and downs, the depression that still visits me sometimes, and the uncertainty of the next year, I have the wonderful, comforting feeling that I'm exactly where I'm supposed to be.
And that, my friends, is a precious, wondrous gift.

For someone who spent the first half of her life feeling trapped in the wrong life, having arrived where I belong gives me a joy I can't quite put into words.

I hope you all either have it already, or will find the place where you belong. If you haven't yet, keep on searching - the reward is worth it!

All my love, and a very Happy New Year to you all!


Wednesday 28 December 2016

Adventures with AirBnB, continued

After my last experience with an AirBnB, I'm curious and a bit apprehensive about the next one. How many pages of rules will await me this time? As I pull up in front of the house, I'm greeted by Santa. Literally! Out of a second-floor window, a life-like projection of Santa fills the window, waving at passersby and beckoning them closer. Alright dear Nick, your wish is my command. The house is decked out in all kinds of Christmas lights, an inflated Bear with a Santa hat, and a sign on the door that says: "Dear Santa, leave presents, take the dogs". A woman with a sense of humour! I like it already. 

The entrance to "my" home is around the corner. I type in the code in the now-familiar keypad, and slowly push open the door. As soon as I lay eyes on the pretty room, I gasp in pleasant surprise - it's lovely! I'm looking at an eclectic living room, with colourful paintings, comfortable looking furniture, and personal touches everywhere. There are teddy bears, dolls (but not so many that it starts to be creepy), Christmas decor, and several lamps that cast a soft, golden glow. I take off my shoes, and explore the rest of the suite: A four-poster bed piled high with pillows (it's the most comfortable bed ever, I discover later), and a small but nice bathroom. 
Returning back to the living room, I discover another surprise: My hostess has left me a Christmas present! 

Home-baked cookies, a bottle of wine and a card. I'm so touched, I spontaneously send my kind hostess a message:

The place looks wonderful! I'm thrilled. Thanks so much for the warm welcome, and the cookies, card and wine. I'm heading out for dinner again in half an hour, just wanted to let you know how happy I am about my beautiful home for the next 5 days 😊

A few minutes later, she knocks on the door to greet me personally. I let her in, and we chat briefly - she even invites me for Christmas dinner in case I have nowhere to go! I already have an invitation (actually two - people are so kind around the holidays), but thank her profusely.

I absolutely love my stay. It's a quiet neighbourhood, and I adore coming home to my cozy nest after work and socializing with friends. I feel like a single girl, living on my own in my cute little place, and the novelty of it makes it fun. As opposed to my last stay, where I felt like a child with a omnipresent mother, this time I'm free and independent.

This morning I checked out, and I'm currently working the last shift in my old job. In less than five hours I am freeeeee!!

As much fun as the last five days have been, I can't wait to return to my husband and my new life. Playing to be a single girl is fun for a few days, but I wouldn't trade being married to my guy for anything in the world. He's a good one.


Thursday 22 December 2016

A house tour!

At long last, I managed to snap a few photos of our new home! It's really all thanks to my MIL, who has been bugging us daily for the last week to send her some photos. Finally, this morning, I promised her that I would get on it right away - and then I did. It's a Christmas miracle!

The reason why I procrastinated is the tidying. I'm a fairly tidy person, but my husband isn't (at all!), so there's always some work to do before taking pictures. Actually, his messiness was one of our main arguments in the early stages of our marriage, but over the years I have learnt to live with it. 
Nobody is perfect 😉

Okay, without further ado, welcome to our home!

We have a long driveway, and that's the first view of our house when you drive down:

That's it from the other side:
(As you can see, I took this photo a few weeks ago before the snow.)

Our entrance:

The first glimpse of the kitchen:

I loooooove the kitchen. It's seriously the best. The floor is heated, which is something I never had before, but don't ever want to live without ever again. The layout is great, and there's tons of surface space for chopping, prepping, and cooking. The bar is still without bar stools, because we haven't found any we both like yet. Any recommendations? Richard wants stools that are comfy and have backrests. I don't know what I want, I'm hoping I will know it when I see it. Help!?

My pride and joy, the gallery wall:

This wall is a bitch to photograph, I can't get it looking as nice in a photo as it does for real. You will have to trust me that it looks quite imposing in real life. It's huge, and has tons of photos with a lot of meaning for both of us on it. Family, the kids, our old farm, Richard's hunting adventures with his best friend, the willow tree, the two most favourite pictures of the two of us together. It makes me smile every time I look at it. Plus, it's a great conversation starter - everybody who has come into our home so far has commented on it!

Dining area:

The chairschair cushions and table are all from IKEA, and the rug is from Rugs USA. We love them all! The sideboard and cupboard moved with us, and were from a local store that doesn't have them any more. Sorry! We had them in our guest bedroom before, and it took me several days before I realized how well they fit into our dining room. I needed the extra storage space, and love how they look in here!

These windows will become Instagram-famous, I'm planning on taking lots of yoga photos in front of them :

Our living room:


Yes, we have my computer in our bedroom. I know that many sleep- or feng shui-experts say that you shouldn't have any electronics in your bedroom. Our new home only has two bedrooms, and after careful consideration, we both decided that we'd rather have a guestroom than a designated office in our home. Having the computer in there hasn't been an issue at all - I turn it off at night, and it's dark and quiet, no big deal. 
The guestroom is important to us because we will have the kids come for visits, Richard's mom already announced she wants to check it all out next year, and we hope we will be able to host numerous friends here over the years. We want to share this beautiful place with those we love!

Btw, there are no photos of the guest room yet, because it has no furniture, just a mattress on the floor. I'm working on rectifying that!

Just found this great little shelf thingy yesterday for my necklaces and bracelets, it's perfect:

A couple more photos from the outside:

Bear in his element:

Did some snowga yesterday:

The view from our balcony:

The view from our front door when you look to your right:

I hope you enjoyed our home tour! I'm so happy I finally got to share it with you 💗


Tuesday 20 December 2016

Farewell tour, act one

"I will miss you."
I have heard these kind, soul-filling words many times over the last week. After a three-week vacation in which we fully moved (and I almost lost my mind), I returned to work for two more weeks. People are confused by that ("Oh, you're back? Haven't you moved?", was a question I was asked many times), but I decided a few weeks ago that I wanted to do it that way - finish my old job in the old year, and start completely fresh in 2017. It just felt like something I needed to do.

An unexpected side-effect of this decision is that I am dragging out my goodbyes. Instead of doing it the short and painless way, I'm doing a loooong goodbye - which is actually amazing. Here's a little tip if you suffer from occasional insecurity and low self-esteem: Tell people you're leaving, and then don't leave for several weeks. Every time they see you they think it's for the last time, so they will say something nice (meaningless or not, if you can't tell, they won't either), because Canadians are polite and that's what we do. When they see you again, unexpectedly, they feel unaccountably guilty (because, again, that's what we Canadians do), almost as if they didn't send you off properly the first time; so not only will they express their delight in seeing you again, but they will also go through the whole goodbye-ceremony again. Like I said, it's awesome

Okay, in all seriousness, I'm only joking because I'm so touched by the last few days that it's either joking about it, or ugly-crying. And nobody needs to see my face mid-ugly-cry after yesterday's picture.
I had one of my favourite ER docs hug me (a first! so surprising, so sweet!), one of the radiologists shake my hand formerly while telling me that he was sad that I was leaving ("there are not many people like you" - you can take from that whatever way you want), and a dear friend (and co-worker ) offer me to be pen-pals ("real pen-pals - not emails, but letters!") to stay in touch. (I obviously accepted, delighted. I haven't had a pen pal in decades!)
It's all very emotional.

I will try to make the following sound like I'm not humble-bragging, but in all honesty, it might be impossible. I feel very loved and special right now - so much, in fact, that I may move again, just to get the same feeling one more time in my life. (Seriously: You will never feel more loved than when you're leaving. Have you ever been at a funeral? Nothing but kind, loving words for the poor deceased soul. Leaving/moving is a close second.)

To summarize, let me tell you what my last few days looked like:

Wednesday night: Girl's night with some of my favourite work gals. We had cocktails, we laughed, we talked, we had fun. It was fabulous.

Thursday night: Dinner and a movie with one of my besties. We don't see each other very often, but
whenever we do, it's awesome. We will stay friends despite the move, we both know it.

Friday night: Dinner with my mammo ladies. It was incredible! We had a ton of laughs, delicious food, and they gave me a beautiful gift and a heartfelt, emotional goodbye-card. So special.
Afterwards, I went to my second dinner (a first!) with our good friends we went on vacation with. It was also fun, mixed with lots of ribbing (they are not totally on board with our move and think we are crazy), and lots of laughs, as always. A very successful (and very exhausting!) Friday night for this introvert.

Saturday night: I had to stay late at work, and when I got home I was so pooped, I went to bed at 8:30pm. This was much more my style.

Sunday night: The boys at work ordered Chinese food, and asked me if I want anything. Sure I do! I rarely say no to food. I was in a bit of a time-crunch (they phoned me in the operating room, while we were in the middle of a complicated case), so I ordered the first thing that came to mind: Chicken Chow Mein. Oh, how I would regret this hasty decision later.  
By the time we were finally done, I was starving. I wolfed down my food, while checking on the weather forecast for the infamous Coquihalla Highway. I was desperate to go home; despite the generous offer of my friend to stay at her place, I really wanted to hug my husband and my dogs that same night. So despite a somewhat dodgy weather forecast (snow!), and the beginning of a queasy feeling in my stomach, I decided to chance it.
Big mistake. Big. Huge.

About half an hour in my as-of-yet uneventful journey, my stomach started to act up. The chicken chow mein was sitting in it like a rock, giving me the most unpleasant stomach pains. I opened a window, and tried to pass gas to relieve the pressure. It didn't work.

I kept on driving, while the pain increased. Several times I contemplated stopping and staying at a motel, just to be able to lie down and give myself a much-needed belly rub. But something (stubbornness? stupidity? eagerness to sleep in my own bed?) kept me driving.

The snow started.
The pain got worse.

The snow got worse.
So did the pain.

It was the drive from hell.
At some point, I sang Christmas songs aloud just to distract myself from what was happening. I handled the snowy roads and snow coming down hard well enough. But the stomach pain? That was another issue. I had the window rolled down for the majority of the 3.5-hour drive, to keep the nausea in check. (Fresh air is a miracle worker for nausea! Remember that for when you really need it, you'll thank me later.)
I also had to stop once to throw up. My stomach was not happy about the chow mein, and decided to evict it somewhere between Langley and Merritt. I felt slightly better after that, but only for a limited time.
By the time I finally made it home, I was a mere shadow of myself. Rich was shocked when he saw me: "What happened to you? What's wrong?"
"I think I got food poisoning," I moaned, before heading straight to bed.
I only left the bed to go to the bathroom, several times that night.

Monday night: Was spent the same as all of Monday: In bed, feeling miserable, with body aches all over, looking (and feeling) like death warmed over.

Tuesday night: Feeling about a million times better than the last two nights! The food poisoning episode was blessedly short, and I'm almost back to normal. Woo-hoo! I spent the night with Rich and the corgi, wrapping Christmas presents and catching up. It feels perfect, just the way it should be.

That was my last week. How was yours?


Saturday 17 December 2016

Adventures with AirBnB

I peer at my phone, trying to make out the instructions. There are a lot of them. How to get into the house?
Oh yes, there it is. Punch in the code, and enter. I type in the numbers, and nothing happens. What the ...? I try again, with the same result. Is this the right house? I double-check, and yes, it is. On my third try, inspiration strikes, and I turn the big lock after entering the numbers. Success! 
I step into a tiny entrance, remove my shoes as instructed, and climb up the steep, long set of stairs. They lead into a living room, and there on the sofa sits a woman, nursing her baby. 
"I'm so sorry!" I stammer, looking away. "Is this the wrong house?" It can't be, since I had to enter a code to get in, but this is so unexpected. 
"No no, that's okay, " she says serenely. "That's why I give guests the code to the entrance. Are you Miriam?" I hesitantly look back, and realize to my relief that she is bottle-feeding the baby. My mind played a trick on me, conjuring up an image that wasn't there. 
"Yes, I am!" I say, and laugh a bit shrilly. We exchange a few pleasantries, and then I ask her if it's okay when I go to my room. I'm a grown woman, yet I'm acting like I'm a child and this stranger is my mother.
How did this happen?

I'm currently staying at an AirBnB, that's how. Last Wednesday I made my way carefully down icy mountain roads for the first leg of my farewell tour my last days at my old job. Despite many generous offers of friends to crash on their couch, I decided I would go the independent route and seek my own accommodations. I have never done Airbnb before, and I was curious how it would work. You can't beat the price: I'm only paying $34 CAD a night for a comfortable bed in a convenient location. 

What I didn't expect was that I would live in someone else's house with them right there, which defeats the purpose of independence. While my hostess is perfectly nice, it is a small house, and she has a baby and is therefore around a lot. Upon inspecting my room, I found a three-page laminated package of rules, which I apparently didn't read carefully enough. When I got home last night, she reprimanded me for not locking the front door when leaving. That's true, because as I told her, I don't know how. I don't have a front key, just the code for the keypad, and I simply had no clue how to lock it. Ahh, but if I had read the rules more carefully, I would have found the instructions on page 2 towards the bottom. It involves pressing down a key while pulling the door tightly towards you, waiting for it to flash (or stop flashing? I can't remember), and then turn the bulky lock. 
Quite honestly, there's a good chance that I still haven't gotten it; I'm sure I will find out when I get home tonight. 

Other rules include: No food or drink in you room. (I'm blatantly breaking this rule by keeping water, fruit, and some juice in my room. I'm a rebel.)
No guests. 
Hang up your towels to avoid mold. 
Conserve energy and water by using them as sparingly as possible. 
No loud noises between 10pm and 8am. I was seriously conflicted if that includes the use of a hairdryer at 7:30am, but decided that with temperatures below -10°C, I had to risk it to avoid hypothermia. I think I got away with it ;-) 
There is also en entire page about recycling, garbage in general, and what to use in the kitchen, but I have to admit that I stopped paying attention at that point. 

Since I literally only sleep there and am gone the rest of the day, it's okay. Like I said, it's a comfortable bed, it's quiet (I haven't heard the baby once!), and that's all I want. 

But it does give me the peculiar feeling of being a child again, living under someone else's roof, and "as long as you live under my roof you follow my rules!".
Tiptoeing up the stairs at night, shoes in hand and trying to be as quiet as possible, gives me flashbacks to my teenage years, when I got home late and hoped I wouldn't wake up my parents.

Last night I had a different fantasy: Of having time-travelled to the 50s, being a single woman working in a strange city, and renting a room from a strict matron. The rules, the small room, the shared bathroom - it all fits. Definitely an interesting experience!

Next week I will return to a different AirBnB, and no doubt to new stories. I can't wait!

Have you ever stayed in an AirBnB before? What did you think?

Here is part 2 of my adventures with AirBnb.


Wednesday 14 December 2016

Snow lovers

See that blue sky? It has stolen my heart. Guys, it's sunny almost every single day, and I'm over the moon excited about it! I get the feeling that there will be no room for SAD this winter with all this gorgeous sunshine around. 
In other news, it's still freezing cold, but we seem to have acclimatized nicely. We spend hours outside every day, partly because of the animals, but also largely because it's so darn nice.  
I'm heading back to my old stomping grounds later today for work, but more importantly, to socialize. I'm so excited! I get to see some of my fave girls over the next few days, and I'm so looking forward to it. We are living like hermits right now, which suits my introvert's soul fine, but it will be nice to dress up, have some cocktails and some much-needed girl time. 

There's also another trip to Ikea planned, to finish (!) furnishing our house. Yup, we are almost done! Once I got everything I need, I will take some photos and do a house tour for you. I promised my MIL to send some photos as well, so I better get on that. It's not a good idea to break a promise to the MIL!

These boots are largely responsible for my adaptation to the cold weather. I luuuuurve them!

Faux leather jacket: H&M (similar)
Sweater: old (there are great options here, here and here)
Skirt: H&M (similar)
Boots: Baffin (I love them, they are toasty warm!)
Mittens: Laundromat (similar); they are fleece-lined, which makes them wonderfully cozy
Scarf: DIY gift (similar)
Hat: gift (similar)

I got to finish packing, have a lovely humpday beautiful souls!


Monday 12 December 2016

Is fate messing with me or helping me?

Three things happened today:

1. I got the letter in the mail that confirms that I will be unemployed as of January 1, 2017. (Even though I did the quitting and wasn't kicked out, it's still a strange, strange feeling.)
2. When I contacted the manager of the hospital I got hired on to set up an orientation shift, she told me that right now, they actually have no available shifts whatsoever, but she hopes that she will have some at an indeterminate date in the future. 
3. I reached 10,100 words in my book. 

When I first read that email telling me that there is no work in the immediate future, and then, just an hour later, the letter confirming my resignation, I sat very still and listened. Listened inside of me for any signs of panic, anxiety, or fear. I was expecting to find at least one of them, so I leaned back in my comfy new chair, looked out onto the snowy, breathtakingly gorgeous landscape, and waited. 

But neither fear, nor anxiety, nor panic made an appearance. Instead, I felt calm and peaceful. Not only that, but a smile was tugging at the corners of my mouth, and I couldn't help but wonder: Was this supposed to happen?

2016 has been a year full of surprises. It didn't at all turn out as expected, but was full of twists and turns. Sitting on my new little desk, gazing out at a landscape that's already so dear, yet still unfamiliar enough to catch me off guard, amazes me daily. I simultaneously can't believe that I'm here, while also sensing deep down in my gut that of course, this was supposed to happen.

After a year of being restless, unbalanced, and slightly dissatisfied, I have arrived at a crossroads. Well, I actually passed the crossroads and started on the road already. This new road is unfamiliar (as new roads tend to be), exciting, and unsettling. But the scenery is lovely, and far off in the distance, I can spot a destination I've been wanting to get to for years: My book. 
The book that I have talked on and off about for a couple of years now. 
It's been inside of me for a long time, scratching on my insides, reminding me every so often that it wants to come out. I've tried to ignore it, because writing it is so incredibly uncomfortable: It's so much work, it scares the shit out of me, it may reveal that I'm nothing but a fraud. 

I have danced around it, switching from wanting to write it to ignoring it for weeks, alternating between hoping the desire will leave to wishing the desire will be stronger; strong enough for me to do it. 

Well, the scales have tipped to one side, and the side is this: I'm writing it. Not going to write it, but actually doing it already. For the past two weeks, I've sat down in front of my computer every single day, and wrote several hundred words each day. Like I said, the story is already inside me, wanting to come out; it's not so much that I chose the story, but that the story chose me. 

It's about a girl who is convinced that she has been dropped into the wrong life. Nothing about her life feels right: her friends, her job, the town she lives in, even her family, they all seem like they don't really fit her. She is the outsider, the odd one out, the one who never feels 100% comfortable. 
She wants to find her place in the world, but the big question is: How? 
She has no fucking idea. 
She aimlessly drifts around for a few years, halfheartedly doing what is expected of her, all the while trying to figure out where her place in the world is.

I've tried several times to write more than blog posts or articles. It was always an insurmountable chore, so painful that I gave up after a short while. 
This time, it's different. It's still hard, really hard, but it's also fun. Yesterday I had such a great writing day, I walked on clouds all day! It's an inexplicable feeling of accomplishment. 

I'm taking this unexpected extra time as a gift. There is no doubt in my mind that I will work again, sooner or later. I will do anything in my power to find a job again! But in the meantime, this is my chance to write this damn book that won't leave me alone.

I have the time, I have a quiet place to work, I don't have any immediate money worries. 

I ran out of excuses. 

2017 will be the year of the book!



Thursday 8 December 2016

Baby, it's cold outside

The inevitable has happened: The cold has arrived. For the last three nights, the temperature hovered around -20͒ C (-4͒ F), and it didn't get much past -7͒ C during the day. But on the (literal) bright side, it's gorgeously sunny and bright every day, and that makes the cold worth it!

I contemplated going outside and taking some outfit pictures with the brilliantly blue sky as backdrop, but I simply couldn't bring myself to do it. One day I may share what I dress like going outside right now, but today is not that day.
Here is a description (from the top down):
1. Toque.
2. Ugly old winter coat, left in the closet from the kids.
3. Richard's sweat pants (think: baggy-ness taken to the next level).
4. Gum boots (because I don't have proper shoes yet, and they are big enough to fit the necessary three pairs of socks that I need to stay warm).
5. Underneath: 1 sweater, one T-shirt, one undershirt; long johns; normal underwear (did I need to clarify that? I felt like I should); the aforementioned three pairs of socks. 
Oh, don't forget the gloves!  

So yeah, there was no way in hell I was going to walk outside in just a dress and one pair of socks, even if they are my favourite pair of over-the-knee-socks. Hopefully I'll get used to the weather and get tougher with time!

Instead, I stayed inside and enjoyed some hot peppermint tea and Christmas cookies.
Also, just in case you were wondering: I was honestly dressed like this all day! After the old sweatpants and oversized sweater routine, I was craving some girly clothes. 

Speaking of routine: Mine is a lot different these days from what it used to be. 
After a cup of coffee, I head outside to water the animals. With it being that cold, the water freezes within half an hour or so, and I feel the urge to give them some much-needed hydration in the morning. We usually do the last feed/watering at around 8 at night, so by the time I go out in the morning, it's been 12 hours. 
After that, I'm still sorting/organizing the house, and after that, I try to get some writing done (I'm working on a big project, one I'm not quite ready to share with you - yet).
Usually it's after 1pm at that point, which means there are only three precious hours of daylight left. I fill those with either more animal maintenance (we are trying to find a new way of caring for them in the cold, which involves a lot of trial and error), yoga, shopping, or normal housekeeping like laundry, cleaning, or ironing. 

In the evenings, I'm cooking dinner (every night! who am I?), and then we watch old English comedies (our latest obsession: Black Books with Dylan Moran). 

(Seriously, give it a try: It's hilarious! And it will make you feel so much better about your own life...)

After that, we fall into bed, exhausted. The sleep in our new house is exquisite! 
Or maybe that's just because we are so bloody tired ;-)

Over-the-knee-socks: H&M (basic socks; stag socks; argyle socks)

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