I haven’t felt much like posting, and you told me to wait until I had something to say or there was something I wanted to tell you publicly. We’ve spoken here and there over the past week and a half, but not enough (at least in my opinion). Here are some more things, just to get you caught up; gchat only gets us so far during the paltry hours that our workdays overlap:
- I forgot to tell you that last Friday, my core was so sore from doing GHD sit-ups two days prior that even though I really had to go, I gave up on trying to poop because it hurt too much. (I am glad we have established that my abs now look impeccable.)
- I went to some fancy BYU Christmas dance show, and I am now convinced that I am destined to be a professional clogger.
- I ate it so hard while skiing last weekend that the binding on one of my skis slipped, and when I tried to put my ski back on, my boot wouldn’t click in. Powder skiing is very different than skiing on groomed trails. Do not like.
- Speaking of skiing, we only went for half a day, and when I returned to my car, there were 16” of fresh powpow. So pretty. So fluffy.
- I started knitting an afghan. It’s ambitious, because I get easily distracted and I usually do much better with smaller projects. We’ll see how this goes.
- A couple of months ago at CrossFit, we did clean & jerks for like a week straight. It agitated my shoulders, and they pinch and hurt pretty easily now, and my range of motion is markedly lesser. Lifting on Monday was not fun. We had push presses and overhead squats to do - I could lift the weight, but it didn’t feel right… so I didn’t do it. Because that’s the smart thing, and doing so would have been silly. Even though I know it’s the best thing for my body, it’s annoying and frustrating. Maybe it’s a sign that I should work on my running…? I’m not streaking, though. NOPE.
- Yesterday, the Peruvians asked me if the natives live in the mountains. They were also concerned about the presence of bears.
- I haven’t had a mountain since November 2nd. What a catastrophe! I mean, I’ve been in the mountains. Just not on top of one.
- I am playing hooky (Utah terminology: sluffing) tomorrow to go skiing. I am so excited/so scared. (See also: Jesse Spano.)
- I told you that I am super nerding out in Hatmione today. Which actually makes me question whether Emily used a different Harry Potter pattern for the mustard hat for me…?! It looks like Hermione’s grey knit hat. Whatever. I’m going to pretend that’s the case, and I love her even more for it.
- Speaking of gifts, I started making you the best Christmas gift ever last year, but I procrastinated and never finished (as you know). I should resume work on that for you. Actually, I will just start it over, because you deserve quality. Spoiler: you will swoon a thousand swoons.
That’s good for now. I feel better.
voyagebound asked: List 10 facts about yourself -pass on to 10 of your favorite followers
I have more work to do tonight, but before I get to it, I figured I should procrastinate a bit and appease the lovely Sarah with a very narcissistic post.
- When I am really nervous, I become absurdly nauseated. Contrary to popular belief, just about everything adventurous I do terrifies me, and therefore makes me nervous. I get nauseated before starting every ski run (seriously - even if it’s my 20th of the day), rappel, rock climb, mountain, canyon, cliff jump, race, and WOD. Every single one. My heart races uncontrollably, and sometimes I shake with fear (though this seems reserved mostly for any situation where I’m on a rope… and now skiing). Once I actually start whatever it is that I am doing and get a control on my breathing, my nerves vanish, I calm down, and I can have fun. But I always start out terrified. I am far from fearless, but I feel like if I let my fear control me, I’d never actually do anything, y’know? So I just make myself do scary stuff anyway. Within reason, of course.
- On my first day of preschool, I sobbed and screamed uncontrollably when my mom dropped me off. The teachers could only calm me down by sitting me atop the kitchen counter while they made and fed me warm chocolate chip cookies. I have always been a simple girl. Apparently, cookies will fix all wrongs in my life.
- I have a lot of nicknames, and I find them all equally endearing. I feel like they’re very personal, and that’s probably because they’re all fairly unique to the individuals using them. Because of that, I generally dislike when an individual appropriates a nickname someone else has for me and uses it her- or himself. However, there are exceptions. For example, Brenny is a nickname given to me by my older brother, but anyone who has met a member of my immediate family is automatically entered into the small pool of humans that are allowed to call me Brenny. From anyone else, it sounds like nails on a chalkboard. Just… no.
- My indecision annoys some people, and it may come across as indifference or a lack of caring. Really, though, I would be happy doing most anything. Company is much more important to me than activity, and if I’m spending time with you, I’ve already made the only real decision that matters to me (i.e., I chose being with you over doing something alone [which I really love to be]). I would rather do whatever makes you happy, because your presence probably makes me content. The only caveat is that if what you want to do involves a lot of other people, I will decisively object. Or silently whimper. One of the two.
- My mom worries about bothering me, so even though she misses me, she never calls. I tell her time and time again that if she’s interrupting or I can’t talk, I’ll either tell her and call her back, or she can just leave me a message and I’ll call her back. When she wanted to know if I would be coming home for Christmas, she asked my sister instead of calling me. As such, she will only call me when she has to - meaning when there is terrible news. When I see her name on my caller ID, my stomach drops and my heart rate spikes. Pavlovian conditioning at its finest.
- Despite my complete lack of grace, I have never broken a bone or had a single suture. Knock on wood. (Shhh, let’s not talk about the number of concussions I’ve had… those are just bruises. On the brain. Shhhh.)
- I absolutely hated snow until I moved to Utah. I am currently lusting after Winter Storm Cleon, the fresh powder that will blanket the Wasatch in a few hours’ time, and the adventures that lie therein. I never thought I would see the day.
- My Thanksgiving was funny. Though KC is not my human and I am not his, I spent the day with some of his family (even though he was with other family), because they’ve become like my second family. His sister-in-law told me that I am one of the most christlike people she knows, and when she describes me to others, that’s her adjective of choice. Even though I am not a person of faith (read: I am a complete heathen), her assertion of my character was heartwarming and flattering. It prompted a discussion of what it means to be a good person and where morality comes from if not from religion. It fascinated me. Humans fascinate me.
- While I am an INTJ, make almost all decisions with sound logic, and I am generally very difficult to affect, I am probably more sentimental than 90% of humans. When I feel, I feel. It’s fine. Probably. Trust. Just let it happen.
- Captain told me to forget about deadlines for tonight and go to bed, so I’m forgoing work in favor of sleeps. He’s smart, so I’m listening. Goodnight, moon.
Looong post. Oops.
The lovely Emily and I decided that it would be prudent to exchange hats, and that was probably the best idea either of us has ever had.
I just got mine in the mail (with omgsh so much fancy, hipster chocolate - my poor ass!). It is cabled and mustard and perfect. It also happens to match almost my entire wardrobe, which is fortunate, because I am going to wear it every day.
I made her a super ador[k]able hat out of some sinfully soft Uruguayan merino, and it took all of my will power to box it up and send it off to her, because I fell in love with it real quick-like. It also took all of my will power not to eat the tea bag cookies that I made for her.
EMILY!: thankyouthankyouthankyou. I am in love with the hat. And you.
Yesterday, I drove 250 miles (well, 500 miles if you include the return trip) to ski above the beautiful red rock at Brian Head. Probably silly, seeing as though I have plenty of open resorts in my proverbial backyard, but: ADVENTURE! And would you just look at that summit view? Just look at it! Stunning. I am so lucky, so spoiled, so blessed to live among so much beauty.
Real talk: last year, I skied for a total of about 2 hours with KC. I got a concussion. It was not fun. I was reassured by friends that I should give it a second chance and that I would love it. This autumn, I was gifted a free pair of skis (<3 my Bandits; thanks, Mickey!), and that encouraged me to spend all of my dollars (only slight a exaggeration) on boots, ski socks, snow pants, goggles, a helmet, ski poles, and a season pass to a local resort. That’s a lot of dollars, guys. All of this after two hours of terrible skiing. TWO HOURS. That is quite a bet.
Anyway, yesterday was my second ski day of the season, and my second resort of the season (Sundance, my resort of choice, doesn’t open until December 6th). When I went to Solitude a few weeks ago (one of the steepest resorts in Utah), it was basically like I had never skied before, because let’s be honest… two hours resulting in a concussion? Clearly I didn’t learn anything. Even the green runs (easiest; 6-25% grade) at Solitude were stupid hard, and I was told that sections of the runs would easily be considered blue anywhere else (intermediate; 25-40% grade). I was frustrated with how hard it was, how much I was falling, and how I didn’t seem to be getting any better, but at the end of the day, I had a breakthrough, and things clicked. I was tired, so I didn’t get to implement what I had learned, but I stored it away for later use.
Yesterday, we did three quick green runs so I could get my bearings and calm down a bit, and then we spent the rest of the day flying through blues. I fell a few times, but nothing crazy like at Solitude. I don’t have any bruises today, nor did I crash into anyone. I turned around beginners that had stopped or had turned abruptly. I maneuvered around silly snowboarders who decided to plop their butts down in the middle of the trail or at the end of the runs (usually without losing control). I became a little bit more comfortable with going fast.
On our last lift ride of the day, as the sun began to set, the mountain began to quiet down, and a seemingly permanent burn began to settle into my quads, my friend turned to me and said, “You know, I had a nightmare. A daymare, really. I thought you would want to stay on the greens all day and that you would want to leave early. I’m surprised you didn’t even want to stop to eat! You just went after it. You are fearless and so ballsy, and you got so much better today because of that. I am so proud of you.”
I think it was a solid investment after all. I am pretty sure I am in love with skiing. Sundance opens next weekend, and I cannot contain my excitement.
Recipe for a perfect Saturday:
- Perfect weather
- Quality company
- 6+ hours of driving through Utah
- $25 lift pass
- 6 straight hours of thigh-burning blues
- red rock + snow (forever a favorite view)
- new Blizzard of the month (Candy Cane Chill!) a day early
- clean sheets and sleep by 10:30
So much win. A+.
Thanks, DOI. I was still sitting on the edge of my seat about that one.
In other news, I have had a hard few days, and I am certain that missing holidays with family will never get any easier. After laying in bed staring at the ceiling for an hour and a half yesterday after waking up, I finally managed to pull myself out of bed. Keeping yourself busy and distracted is relatively easy, but convincing yourself to start doing things is the hardest part.
I baked a cinnamon swirl cake to bring with me to supper with some of my adoptive family and three types of cupcakes, one each for three lovely humans that chose to include me in a friendsgiving of sorts (mocha with espresso buttercream, spice with cream cheese frosting, cookie dough filled with cookie dough buttercream). I cleaned as I sullied. I ate human portions and didn’t want to die. I felt warmly welcomed instead of like an intruder of family time. I helped put up a Christmas tree. I talked and laughed and hugged. I was sincerely thanked for my presence, physical and otherwise. I found my friends, and I teased and was teased in return. We comfortably coexisted in introvert heaven while watching Anne of Green Gables. I induced a few sugar comas, and three cream cheese brownies may found their way into my person (but I followed it up with some brussels sprout salad, so it’s fine…?).
Now I am working from home - translating some technical documents into Spanish for an impending influx of Peruvians for a training - while listening to a holiday Pandora station. I threw away all of my leftover cupcake parts (naked cupcakes, frosting, scraps), and I am drinking cup after cup of seltzer as I try to rehydrate my poor water-deprived body. My kitchen is almost clean again, and two loads of laundry have warmed my apartment considerably. I have avoided all unnecessary consumerism in favor of quality time spent with quality humans. Tomorrow, I ski!
Life is good to me. It’s so much easier to dwell on sadness and loneliness than it is to actively seek your happy, but a tiny bit of effort can pay off in dividends. Despite being far from loved ones, I had a really good day.
I wrote a long weekend post, but then I realized I hate long posts. I deleted a bunch and kept the things I liked. You may not follow, but I don’t care.
It’s probably still too long for my liking, but here is our abridged weekend.
Her presence was so welcome and joyful and comforting, and it felt like sleeping would just be time wasted.
We worked our hammies so hard that it hurt to sit all weekend and/or move, and we were also gifted with raw, painful throats that left our voices hoarse all day.
Blake snapped photos non-stop on our way both up and down canyon, and it reminded me how spoiled I am to live here and see all of this beauty every day. I teased, but I know how stunning and awesome (in the truest sense of the word) these sights are. I remember how surreal it all seemed and what seeing it for the first [few thousand] time(s) feels like. “This is not real life,” I would say to myself and anyone listening. “This is the Truman Show. Where is the wall? I have to find the end.” I lovelovelove being able to show off my home.
I took them up Ensign Peak, a short hike that offers some of the best views of the city; from here the pioneers laid out the valley, and I took the best photo of Anna known to man.
Instead, Anna tried to eat the petroglyphs and pictographs. We forced her back into her car by promising her a trip to Walmart in order to make her feel more at home. She calmed down, we grabbed some towels and flashlights, and we drove another hour and a half to the trailhead of Diamond Fork Hot Springs.
To be fair, I thought Blake clearing his throat was a moose, and Anna asked if there were mile markers along the trail (such a precious city girl).
Pastry and coffee at my favorite patisserie. Mormon history and an over-zealous missionary. Norman Rockwell exhibit and hands-on fun (“Just call me Mrs. Rockwell!”). Scouting in Nephi’s boat. Dancing like no one’s watching (even though everyone is). Touring the rooftop garden at the convention center.
It’s always hard for me to say goodbye when my one of my favorite women comes to visit. While I have two humans here in Utah that I am completely comfortable with and can talk to about anything, they are both male. There is something so very different and special about a friendship with another female, and it’s something that I miss having within reach.
Just a quick scene from yesterday atop Wedge Canyon. The visibility wasn’t quite as good as we had hoped (cue random blizzard) but the views were still stunning.
The Little Grand Canyon in the San Rafael Swell offers unparalleled views this time of year.
CrossFit for breakfast with my favorite southern belle!
Deadlifts and wall balls. Too many of each. Way too many.
We’re also wearing the same tank top, because we are precious.