Simple Living

This past weekend has been about keeping things simple. Simple eating, simple schedule – Just simple living.

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Tis the season for Fiddleheads!

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Simple Lunch – leftover Fiddleheads and pasta

Simple eating is probably the best start and I know no other way than taking advantage of the very short time fiddleheads are at peak. The season for picking them is very short and while we resort to just buying them at the local market, it’s worth making the time to head out and buy them!

We had them with our dinner one night sauteed in butter with shallots and garlic. I had just enough left over along with a little leftover pasta for lunch Saturday afternoon. Perfect combination, especially with a cold flute of organic sparkling cava.

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Freshly cut lilacs

Saturday morning, Doug took Hobbes out for a walk and found some wild lilacs by the side of the road. He clipped a couple and put it in a glass bowl filled with water. It is now a center piece in our living room and brings me great joy to take in the lovely aroma.

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Blueberry blossoms

Sitting out on our patio yesterday, drinking our morning coffee, I noticed our blueberry plant was covered with these lovely white flowers. We weren’t successful last year when we first brought this plant home but with all the rain we’ve been getting, and all the blossoms popping out everywhere, there is hope we actually might get to see berries!

Sunday – I am taking it all in slowly. There were dishes to be done and I’m still doing laundry, but I took a bath (after weeks of not taking time to practice this de-stressing luxury) and I may even take another one before bed.

After 2 solid weeks of go-go-go, I finally am taking just a little time to slow down.

Giacomo

I woke up this morning after dreaming of a time in my 20’s. I was on a cruise. Single, bored and hungry for an adventure.

Not long into the cruise I saw him. A head waiter (as it turns out, our head waiter) from Sicily. His name was Giacomo.

I was sitting at one of the buffet tables, finishing my lunch, plugged into my tunes and book in tow. I looked up as I was about to leave. He was standing there next to some of his fellow waiters and bus boys, chatting away. It sounds awfully cliché but I don’t know how to explain it any other way – our eyes locked. My confidence at the time was pretty high – I knew I had him right there and then. I made up my mind I was going to have my fun with him. I suppose at the time, I was preying on him. In the end, it was somewhat the other way around (not that I cared – it wasn’t a contest; we both won out in the end).

I got up and started to walk the opposite direction of him as I made my way to the pool. I glanced back over my shoulder not surprised to see him staring back at me. He smile and laughed. And I continued to walk away. I was not in a rush – the rest of the week would develop the way it should. Naturally, no pressure but paced out for the fun and excitement of the chase.

I will be honest here. While I spent most of my free time (or his free time since he had to work most days) with him, obviously, we knew nothing about each other. Why would we? What would have been the need? We were there for each other for the same reasons – to fill a gap in our lives on a very temporary basis. To create a small memory. To bide time.

We talked about ourselves, of course. But who knew if he was even telling me the truth? How old was he? I don’t know. He didn’t want to tell me – so I guessed he was younger than me and was afraid me knowing would make me retract from him. As if I cared. He was obviously in his 20’s or 30’s and not a minor.

He said he was single but I knew better than to believe that. No doubt he had a girlfriend back home. Maybe even a wife – with children? It was a possibility.

So I woke up thinking about him today since his face and the touch of his skin was so fresh in my memory. I was awake but half in that dream-state. What a glorious feeling to wake up that way. In that half-awake and half-dreaming phase.

I’m about to get personal here – nothing graphic of course. There’s a reason why I remember him. A friend of mind asked me, after I came back from the cruise and met this friend for drinks, what was it about Giacomo that had me so excited and full of life upon my return to reality.

I said, “He was in command of me.” That’s about it. Giacomo filled that fantasy of mine – of possibly most women – of being dominated. To a lesser and much softer extent, he was my Christian Grey. Minus all the heavy bondage.

It was the type of encounter which was intriguing, mysterious and perhaps a little dangerous (there were dark corners of the ship I had never been to – nor had I ever been in the Captain’s mess after hours). The risk of getting caught elevated the excitement.

Okay – I promise. That’s as personal I will get here.

It was also the type of vacation romance which was best suited for one week (okay – maybe two weeks max!) You may be wondering why I am writing about something so risque and personal after being happily married for over 13 years to my dear husband.

I suppose it’s just the side of me whom loves to wax nostalgic from time to time. There are no regrets with my experience with Giacomo. I barely can envision his face or even the sound of his voice. I have fleeting pictures of moments we’ve had in my head – but that’s about it. Fleeting.

I can’t, however, forget how alive I felt from the wilder side of my youth – perhaps, I’m also grateful for the chance to be free. Committing myself to a forever-and-ever would have not been successful if I hadn’t let Giacomo kiss me that first night.

 

Reading Has Become My Sanctuary

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My temporary mini-library

I haven’t been without a novel since our cruise in November. In fact, I’m now on my 4th read with at least two more books on my list of next reads. Both are on my new Kindle waiting for me. Currently, however, I’m trying to get through some traditional paperbacks I’ve received as gifts or bought for myself in order to decide if they should be kept in our permanent collection or if I should just give them away (we’re doing some sorting and chucking).

I know a lot of people who have read far more than I have in 3 months but for me this is pretty good. I have had to learn to make time for reading, though. Which means giving up more TV time and more screen-time. Neither of which I miss now.  In fact, I feel healthier having cut down those two pleasures altogether.

So long as no one takes away my red wine – or my latest indulgence, dry sparkling wine with strawberries.

Yesterday, I slid out just to get a wonderful pedicure. I was finishing The Girl on the Train while my feet were getting pampered. I was at the final five pages when my toes were receiving some cuticle oil massaged in – the final stage. I was so desperate not to go home yet – to just finish the novel so I could head off feeling content and accomplished!

Yes, I said accomplished. And I won’t take that back – this is, after all, a quest to get myself back on track, to reduce my stress, to allow myself a healthy outlet while rediscovering a joy I use to love doing 20 years ago.

So I walked down to the cafe a few stores away from the spa, ordered a dark roast coffee and slowly went over the words of those last five pages. I drew it out – letting each word travel from my soul to my lips. As if each of those words were delicate and needed to be handled with care. Each word was nourishment for my soul.

I came home and was greeted by my wonderful husband whom I sat to talk with before convincing him to do a 50 minute at-home yoga practice with me. Afterwards,  we finished the sparkling cava that had been chilling in the fridge, paired with organic strawberries, fluffy cream cheese and crackers.

I’m not sure how I could have made my Saturday afternoon better..

guilty pleasures no. 70 – Christmas ornaments

Christmas Ornaments – I could actually write a post about Christmas decorations in general but I wanted to pay a special homage to ornaments. I selected the above image because of my obsession with D…

Source: guilty pleasures no. 70 – Christmas ornaments

My Birthday – Take Two Part Two!

As mentioned, I needed a birthday redo. And so, I did just that yesterday.

It was exactly the perfect birthday I wanted this year.

I had my birthday brunch, did my 90 minutes yoga and got a lot of chance to read while snuggling under my new faux-fur throw my PIL got for my birthday (of which the dog has now taken over):

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Hey! That’s MY birthday present!

Even better, I had the house to myself for a couple of hours so I actually had time to take an uninterrupted bath! With red wine! And more reading!!!

That ended though when my family came up, my dog ran upstairs to show his concern that I was in a tub of water which separates his ability to be close to me and my daughter barging in asking if she could play Sims 3 on the PS3 in our bedroom.

I was pretty much at the end of my soak anyway.

Today, I will continue with part 3 of my birthday redo. I’m calling it a lazy day where I will end with a spa pedicure.

Will tomorrow be part 4 of my birthday redo? I don’t know. I haven’t decided yet.