Friday, November 25, 2016

{Friendship Friday} Deal breakers

So I'm kind-of addicted to a new podcast called Dear Sugar.

It's Cheryl Strayed's podcast. One she does with a guy called Steve Almond.

Cheryl is the author of Wild, the book that was made into a movie that starred Reese Witherspoon.

I wasn't wild about the movie (haha!) but now that I've heard her podcast, I quite love her :)

Anyway, Dear Sugar is the title of her column which is one of the reasons she became famous, I think.

They talk about everything relationships on this podcast, which is probably why I love it so much!

People aren't like tapestries - you can't just pull out the bits you don't like. - Dear Sugar podcast

I can't remember in which context this was said but I loved it so I wrote it down.

It got me thinking about how with any relationship really, but definitely with friendships, you have to decide to accept all the bits if you're going to be friends with someone.

Or you have to accept that the annoying bits are endearing and quirky, and not a deal breaker.

Or you stop being friends.

The trick is that sometimes we don't know what those deal breaker things are until after the fact.

For me, I've had friends say hurtful things to me. That's not a deal breaker at all. The deal breaker is when you don't care that I'm hurt by those statements.

I have a work friend who is always late. Always. I'm always tempted to send her separate meeting invites so she actually pitches up on time. But this is not deal breaker stuff because in the ways that count, she is trustworthy, caring, and calls me out on things.

I'm afraid I'm still reading the election coverage on blogs despite my good intentions. I think it's because it feels like if I lived in the US, some of these issues might be dealbreaker issues for me and I wonder if I'd have any friends left. My stance is not so much political but more values-based.

I read a blog this week and she said that she'd been to a seminar with two speakers prior to the election, and both speakers spoke as if everyone there would be voting for Clinton. One speaker did say that statistically speaking there were at least a few Trump supporters but it highlighted (after the fact) that people were letting other people believe what they wanted, and staying under the radar. Anyway, the comments on that post are interesting.

This whole election business also highlighted to me that clearly I follow only one type of person and I need to change that.

Have you seen posts on the internet earlier this week (and podcasts for the 2 people who listen to podcasts!) talking about surviving Thanksgiving after all the politics? I hope all my US friends had good Thanksgivings!

Back to friendship.

Have you ever had a values/ beliefs disagreement in a friendship? How did it play out? Did you decide that it was okay and you'd accept it or did the friendship end?

(as always, you can stay anonymous - I'm more interested in the story than who is saying it :))

Wednesday, November 23, 2016

Indulging in my absolutely favourite activity

(which is reading!)

I had a great reading month in October.

9 books.

I have to say that my goal for this year was 70, and my real goal was to have it all read by mid-Dec, because for the last couple of years I've been frantically reading during December, not that that's a bad thing, but it would be nice to be more relaxed so I can also work for a week on my annual review/ goal-setting, etc. since that is in fact, my absolute favourite part of the whole year.

And... I'm killing it!

I'm already on 84 books and we have 6 weeks of the year left.

Most disappointing

Strengthsfinder 2.0 - once you take the test and read up on your 5 strengths, that's it really. Nothing else in the book.

The best yes (good but I write on this stuff so not as meaningful for me)
Falling free (also good - I love her heart but I didn't find it earth-shattering. Then again, we live in Africa so things the Americans think are wow are our reality on every street corner)

Notable reads
Run - my first Ann Patchett and one I found very interesting
Foolish mortals - my first Jennifer Johnston. A new (to me) Irish author that I discovered as she was interviewed on my favourite Irish podcast, Roisin Meets... I will definitely read her others!

I mentioned on Instagram that one of my Christmas traditions is to start reading books set at Christmas. A lot of it is intentional but obviously if I don't have any, I will read anything, but I do buy ahead and make sure I have tons of Christmassy books on my Kindle.

So that's what's happening in my reading life.

And ohhhhh, I'm listening to Rob Lowe's memoir, Stories I only tell my friends .... and loving it! In other fabulous news, Alec Baldwin's book will be released in April 2017. You may remember how much I love his voice so I canNOT wait!

Tell me what you're reading right now!

How was your reading in October (if you can even remember!)?

Monday, November 21, 2016

Monday musings

(I was going to title this 7 on a Sunday... on a Monday... but it felt lame)

Right, how are you all doing?

I don't have a fireplace at my new house and I'm not sure where all our stuff will go :)

I'm doing great.

1. I had a wonderful weekend which D and I dissected in the car on the way to work and it's because of these elements:
  1. time with kids and D
  2. time in my passion (the 5 Love Languages workshop)
  3. time spent pottering (Christmas stuff....)
  4. time being productive (October photo organising complete!) and intentional (playing with my Shining Year workbook)
  5. time relaxing (photos, eating out, reading a whole book)
  6. time with friends (love languages and we went out for supper last night)

It's so nice to not be practising Spanish all the time.

2. I have some issues around this Spanish story which I need to talk through and decide what's the best way forward.

You see, many people have asked me why I'm doing Spanish, and why I do exams. And my usual answer (pre-this crazy exam period) was that I enjoy it. But I can't say that I had much joy this time around...

And if that's going to be the way it will be going forward, then quite frankly I can exercise for free at the gym (I joined in 2003 and paid about R600 then, so I pay nothing every month) and put the R600-odd into unit trusts/ paying off bond (things I really value) instead of this.... but I have some thinking to do because I'm also aware that it is the end of the year, this has been a tough period and I need some perspective....

3. The other night I got home just after the rain stopped and so, as you do, I put on my pyjamas and slippers and went prowling around the garden, taking pictures of the flowers with rain drops on them.

It was only about 10 - 15 minutes but it was such a glorious time of playing with my camera.

I'll show you some of those pics when I get to them but I thought I'd do a little photo workshop next year (nothing technical, really just how to "see differently", kind of a Superhero Photo lite) and then obviously we can all prowl around the garden and in the street practising our skills.

That sounds like such fun to me. What do you think?

How was your weekend? What made it a good/ not-so-good one?
Do you take time to do something for yourself daily?

Friday, November 11, 2016

Five for Friday - the crazy edition

Well, this week has felt like a month!

1. The election still has me glued to the internet but I decided tonight is my last night. I've read  Design Mom, Cup of Jo and Emily Henderson's posts, and comments (only some) and I'm understanding more about the Trump supporters but I still feel like I'm not sure how this happened. Still, desperate people.

One person told me they voted Trump and why (economics) and that they and many of their friends voted for him despite his character.

At the moment, I'm thinking MBTI's coming into play here.

I'm so grateful we have One higher to look towards.

2. In more pleasant news, my spanish exams are over and I never have to do that dance again - yay!

Results on Tuesday but I seriously don't care because I did my best and I enjoyed it, and that's what counts for me.

One of the other girls gets so anxious she was puking before she arrived tonight, and again while waiting. Shame!

3. I had a good week at work - this was the week of legal agreements coming out of my ears. I think I drafted about 8 - 10. Crazy.

4. I love my navy blue kitchen. I'm so glad I took a risk. I will write more about this on Organising Queen next week (with pictures!) but it is such a good improvement for just a tiny fraction of a kitchen makeover.

5. And last but not least, during my week of prayer/ social media fast (PS please tell me when things happen for you!), my prayer was to get offers on our house. Well, we got 2 - one truly awful one and one more decent. We accepted the more decent one mostly because I am ready for this to be done. It's been huge mental strain on me (I'm the "minister of finance" in our home) not to mention money and energy.

Anyway, today I received a copy of the signed bond grant so everything is in order and now the house is officially sold. :)

Over to the attorneys now to push through this transaction asap.

And that's me for this week!

I have BIG plans for this weekend in the "nesting" category - I want to start putting up Christmas because I'm in the mood for some O Holy Night :)

Tell me about one good thing that happened in your life this week.

Wednesday, November 09, 2016

I am completely beside myself

I've been glued to the news sites for most of yesterday.

Usually when I work from home I'm super productive (I'd say about 3 X what I am at the office). Yesterday, I got done what I'd get done here.

That's because of this election.

I even woke early this morning to follow the news.

I said to a friend that I'm not even an anxious person but I was feeling such anxiety.

Turns out I was right.

What in the heck?

I actually cannot believe the result.

Who are these people and what was their motivation?

I got to the office and someone here says they're moving to the US (as a joke). Two of us set him straight and said you're black and a foreigner - not sure you're welcome there.

I feel like this is a nightmare that I'm to wake up from.

I can't imagine actually living in the US right now.

What's going through your head right now?


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