Monday, October 17, 2011

Body image–revisited

As a reminder, one of my goals this year has been to be healthy and get fit.

I’ve been my usual flakey self when it comes to doing regular exercise. My gym membership is up and I won’t bother renewing it, since I hadn’t gone to swim for several months prior to it expiring. I try to do push-ups everyday, and I do kettlebell swings usually 3-4 days every week, as long as my body feels well-recovered from the last session. One work-out is usually only a few minutes, or however long it takes to do 50 swings. Yes, that’s it. And I can really feel the difference in my arms. I’m planning on being able to do 100 swings before I try progressing to other exercises with the kettlebell, since my upper body strength is pretty low. With a 15lb kettlebell, right now I can’t keep control if I try to press it over my head and ideally I should be able to do that at least once without shaking like a leaf.

Visiting childhood

I had a wonderful weekend. I got to satisfy some more of my fall-nostalgia by visiting the house I lived in until I was 6 years old. It’s literally around the corner from the house my family lives in now. People think this is strange, but really, it was the idea house for size & cost, plus it had a pool, plus my parents had two kids in elementary school that would not have to change schools. We really lucked out.

24 Ottawa Rd from the exterior has changed a bit since we lived there. The two bushes with the poppable lavender blossoms still grow at the end of the front walk, but the garden that we used to jump in from the porch is no longer next to the stairs. The house has been painted, from gray to purple (not accurately shown in this image), with a nice light yellow trim. The exterior looks well cared for. You can almost tell from this picture how small it truly is.

The house is so much smaller than I remembered it, from the passageway into the kitchen where my dad used to lie while talking on the phone, to the narrow stairs to the second floor, and the tiny bedrooms. Since I was 6 yrs old the last time I was there, it’s not surprising that it seems so much smaller now, and I can definitely see why my parents were wise in looking for a larger space for their family. It’s hard for me to imagine, with those tiny bedrooms, what kind of family could comfortably live here.

The attic has been finished since we moved out and is now a beautiful master suite with four sky-lights and a bathroom. Unfortunately, they used an old tub & fixtures so it looks outdated, despite having been renovated within the last 10 years. There are numerous cabinets & cavities up there for storage, which makes up for the decrepit basement.

Two things that haven’t changed at all: the 2nd floor bathroom (it looks cleaner than I remember, but otherwise is exactly the same, including the terrible sliding plastic “curtain” on the shower), and the basement (which was dingy back when we lived there). One thing that has almost not changed is the tiny, tiny kitchen. The floor is the same, and they just painted the cabinets white to make it seem bigger/brighter (because it is VERY dark in there). My dad gave us the grand tour and I learned about a lot of the renovations he had done when we lived there (the ceilings, the floors, the pantry/back door which came from my grandparents house in Maine and is still on the back of the house). It was really nice to see the place as I remembered it, with minor changes. I can still remember climbing up the stairs and seeing my dad asleep in the room across the hall, or the alligator-shaped stain on the ceiling in their bedroom, and swinging from the bar in my closet, which used to feature a half-sized door that allowed access to the attic and has since been opened up to a full stair-case.

They want $539,000 for this place. With the selling points being the attic suite and the first floor (because the hardwood floors are in good shape, and the dining room & living room are fine), they might get $450,000, but if the basement floods, I don’t think that’s entirely a fair price. I hope we get a nicer family living there.

(Very strange how my perspective has changed about the quality of homes since doing so much apartment searching and finally having my own apartment to care for. The Worcester apartment was never really worth up-keeping since it was in such shoddy shape to begin with, so it’s nice to have a place that I really want to invest the effort into.)

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Missing you

Autumn always makes me nostalgic, especially with the rain New England tends to get this time of year. Lately though I haven’t been thinking about my teen years, mostly because I’ve been successfully staving off the depression that usually sets in with the decreased sunlight by massively supplementing with Vitamin D. I’ve been thinking about being a little kid.

Wednesday, October 05, 2011

Fan-girlishness

I was recently blessed with the opportunity to meet one of my favorite authors: Laini Taylor. She is from Portland, OR, and this was her first book tour, so of COURSE I made tons of excuses until my sister basically told me she was taking me. Done. Except that I had to feed her after.

I panicked about rush hour traffic. I panicked about getting there on time. It was fine.

I don’t even mind that the picture we took came out blurry because you can still tell it’s her, and me.