Friday, November 22, 2013

2013 in review

It's a little early, but I'm ready to review.  I present to you 2013, broken out into categories.

Practice

This year I changed my alarm so that I have 15 minutes to sit in the morning. This was about 2-3 months ago, now I find myself waking up earlier to get in a 30 minute sit every day.

I find myself wanting to learn more about concentration, equanimity and compassion. My practice now is doing kind and friendly things, even if I don't feel kind and friendly. When I feel really cranky about something, I write down something for which I am grateful. This is sticky because I want to write about material luxuries, but try to find something else.

Apparel Arts

I started taking pattern making classes last January, it has changed my life in a lot of positive ways. Like most people, I have a complex relationship with clothing and fit. But I love clothes so this was a way to make clothing mine. The first section was skirts. I wasn't even interested in skirts before I started taking this class. But now I know that skirts can fit into the weekly wardrobe as easily as jeans.

I learned that I may have an idea for a long time, even over a year, before I can make it.

The gorgeous thing about style is that it can be ever changing and flowing. One style need not define me every day, deciding what I want to wear every day can be fun.

I have enough. Well thought out basics are better than impulsive and trendy purchases. When one has the right pieces, they can mimic the trends if one would like.

Dr Sketchy's

This year we successfully had two events a month at Chicken John's warehouse. The community is wonderful, our space is great, I am grateful to have this opportunity. I like drawing twice a month, I like picking the models. My drawing is always improving and I really like using watercolors.

Family

Bio: Super complex in 2013, but we seem to be past a crisis stage with my father's health. He seems happy, for now he can talk on the phone and he laughs. Mom has adjusted to the changes. We have a lot of help. I show up when I need to, even if I don't always feel like it.

My local chosen family and community rocks. I love my babycakes and the cats.

Financial

You Need a Budget and Mr Money Mustache are changing my views on money. I currently do a pretty good job of saving, but I am very interested in early retirement. I've been looking at a lot of things differently than in the past and I'm grateful that I started saving early. I'm questioning all expenses.

Health/Riding

Lot of accomplishments in this category in 2013. Did AIDS/LifeCycle break down the mental hurdle that kept me thinking that some things couldn't be accomplished? Oh yes.

6 months of training and a 545 mile ride to LA were pretty special. My team, the feeling of helping people, being of service and accomplishing this major goal felt wonderful.

I was also able to participate in some 200ks with SFR this year as well. It's nice to be with that community.

I lost over ten pounds this year, I've lost 35 total. It feels weird to see the hollows under my cheekbones, I like them.

There is a relationship now between art and riding, in that I've been designing posters for SFR and for commission projects.

I just quit sugar in what I am calling 'No Sugar November'. I had a headache for the first 9 days. Eating bread makes me feel the same, and starts the craving cycle. I'm not sure that I am ready to take on bread and grains.

Style

A big year for style! I'm very excited about it. Bill and I both explored the option of getting custom clothing. In the Spring, I started out looking for dress shoes/flats that would replace a pair of shoes that I bought in London in 2006. Eventually it led me to Al's Attire and I had them remade! In my size!

My joke is that there is no venn diagram where wide feet and cute intersect. I ordered two pairs of custom shoes this year and have ideas about what I might like to invest in next year.

I took some fabric that I bought for myself and Bill into Al's and we had shirts made as well.

I'm exploring skirt shapes, volume, color, not so much pattern (this is a hard one), accessories and modern fashion. My Pinterest is about shapes and inspiration. One lesson that Apparel Arts has taught me is that I can hold onto that inspiration as long as I need it, eventually I will have the skills to make whatever I want. And that, while it is clinging, is also freedom.

Evernote

This may sound crazy but Evernote kind of changed my life. I track all of my projects and interests using Evernote, I clip web pages, recipes, all of it. I found out about it from reading an article on the founders of ModCloth.

One big thing I did this year was track all the clothing whims that I had, that I wanted to purchase. I found that most of the things I bought online I sent back, and most of the things that I thought I wanted, if I write them down and think about it for a while...well they don't really interest me for very long. Or if they do, then it is worth saving the money. Trades also rock.

Anyhoo, that's it. Thanks for reading.
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