May 9, 2019 · Write a comment · Categories: Musings · Tags:

Over the weekend I attended a rowing camp. The local rowing club arranged for a professional coach to visit and hold a three-day camp on our river, with morning and afternoon sessions each day. The forecast called for rain and high water on Friday, however, and that left us concerned that we might have to cancel the rowing camp if the river got too high.

The weather turned out all right, although the morning group spent part of their time on the indoor rowing machines on Friday because of heavy rain and debris in the river. The rain had mostly cleared up by the time my husband and I arrived for the afternoon session. Although the air was still a bit chilly and the river was flowing faster than usual, the water was very smooth and calm.


We learned some useful tips at the camp that should make us better rowers, and everyone had a good time. I was glad that we hadn’t let weather worries deprive us of the opportunity!

May 2, 2019 · 2 comments · Categories: Musings · Tags:

When I opened the dishwasher yesterday evening to put in a cup, the door suddenly fell down with a WHAM! I looked down and saw a big spring on the floor. The spring itself was in one piece, but the part that attached to the spring obviously was broken. Not a good day, I thought.

Then my husband came home from the gym a few minutes later. After looking at the broken piece, he checked online and told me that a local store had the replacement kit, it wasn’t expensive, and he would fix the dishwasher door when he got home on Thursday.

Then we went out for a walk. It was getting dark, and there was a bit of light rain, but we enjoyed getting outdoors in the fresh air anyway. It turned out to be a good day after all, with no need for worries.

Word-art that says "It's a good day to have a good day."

Nurturing Thursday was started by Becca Givens and seeks to “give this planet a much needed shot of fun, support and positive energy.” Visit her site to find more Nurturing Thursday posts and a list of frequent contributors.

My kitchen has a bay window above the sink. I like the way it looks, but it’s a bit awkward because I am short enough that I can’t easily reach the middle section to open and close either the window or the blinds.

Bay window in dim light.

When we moved into the house, I got in the habit of standing on my tiptoes and stretching out to reach the window. Standing on a stepstool is much more comfortable, but now I often find myself closing the blinds without it at sunset just because I haven’t stopped to think about it.

I probably ought to break that habit by making a point of consciously going to get the stepstool whenever I do anything with that window. Of course, it doesn’t really matter much one way or the other; but in general, I see habit-busting as a good way to exercise mental flexibility.

After not getting enough sleep last week, as I mentioned in my previous Nurturing Thursday post, I’ve been making more of an effort to stay well rested. I wear a Fitbit at night to keep track of my sleep; it’s not entirely accurate, but close enough to let me know when I should go to bed earlier.

Meditation also helps with restful sleep. I find Reiki very refreshing, and a few days ago I browsed through a collection of animated sleep mantras, which I enjoyed. Here’s one of the images from that page (reposted with permission). Very soothing—I could definitely doze off looking at it.

Nurturing Thursday was started by Becca Givens and seeks to “give this planet a much needed shot of fun, support and positive energy.” Visit her site to find more Nurturing Thursday posts and a list of frequent contributors.

I recently volunteered to become the webmaster for the rowing club, which has had various people contributing to its website over the years. Without someone responsible for coordinating the content, the site ended up with outdated pages and not enough fresh material.

A blog post about our “spring break” trip to Tennessee, which had good participation and was a lot of fun for all the members involved, seemed the obvious place to start. I got some photos from one of the trip’s organizers, who often takes pictures of club events. Here’s one of me carrying the bow of a double:

Meg Evans carrying boat at Melton Lake in Tennessee

The weather was gorgeous, and although I got a bit sunburned from so much rowing (some peeling skin on the backs of my hands), it felt like a great adventure. I wrote a cheerful post about what a good time everyone had. The organizer who gave me the photos enjoyed the post so much that she sent an email to all the club’s members complimenting my writing, with a link. It’s always good to be appreciated!

My subconscious mind has been in a cranky mood for the past few weeks.

It all started out innocently enough. I was going out to get my hair done, and then a peculiar thought popped up out of nowhere. Wouldn’t it be interesting to go back to college and study biochemistry?

Well, no, that actually made no practical sense whatsoever, given the fact that I do not have a science background and it is a very difficult and time-consuming course of study. If I wanted to change careers, plenty of other options would be a much better fit.

But it would be so fascinating, the little inner voice persisted. So many amazing things to learn and discover!

I left that odd thought to settle for a few days, and it quieted down. Meanwhile, I was still writing a daily “kindness journal” as described in my New Year’s resolution post, keeping track of ways in which others were kind to me. It was meant to be a reminder that the world is full of kindness.

When March came to an end I’d been keeping that journal for three full months. My subconscious mind made clear it wasn’t happy about that accomplishment, though, because when I picked up a pen to make an entry, it snapped at me like a bad-tempered badger.

Badger showing its teeth.

(Creative Commons image via flickr)

“Quit! Right now!” it snarled. “This journal is just another chore draining your energy, and you’ve had too many of those already! You need to take better care of yourself and quit piling on random obligations.”

Well, okay. I hadn’t in fact done much over the winter, but it was true that I had been feeling low on energy, for whatever reason. So I decided to take my cranky inner badger’s advice and abandon the journal, which I figured had probably served its purpose well enough.

After two journal-less weeks, I had a dream that seemed like it was related in some way. In this dream, I asked my husband a question. Instead of answering it directly, he said “Remember,” in a tone that might have been used to lecture a forgetful child. Then he told me something tangential.

I felt annoyed for a moment, and then I started to wake up. As is the way of dreams, I promptly forgot whatever he had been telling me to remember. That seemed hilarious to my half-asleep brain, and I snickered, “Ha, guess what, I forgot already! Phooey to whatever you said!”

After that I woke up more fully and realized that I was being snarky and childish with someone who wasn’t even there. Still, it felt like there was some meaning to this nonexistent and totally silly conversation.

I gave it some thought for the next few days, along with the other weird messages I’d been getting from my subconscious recently, and decided that all of them had to do with saying “Phooey” to expectations. That is to say, I need to lighten up, be more flexible, and not let routines and assumptions get in the way of seeing the world’s possibilities.

After a fun mini-vacation with my husband in Tennessee over a long weekend, in which we got outdoors a lot and enjoyed the warm weather, getting back into my regular routine has left me feeling a bit unfocused. Some of that is because we got back home late on Tuesday night and didn’t get nearly enough sleep. Because I have been reminding myself that there’s no need to do everything all at once, I decided to share this useful reminder for this week’s Nurturing Thursday.

Word-art that says "The secret of getting ahead is getting started." -Mark Twain

Nurturing Thursday was started by Becca Givens and seeks to “give this planet a much needed shot of fun, support and positive energy.” Visit her site to find more Nurturing Thursday posts and a list of frequent contributors.

I slept late on Monday, which left me starting the week in a bit of a rush. My husband was busy too, and when we went down to the river to row after work, it wasn’t as early as usual. So I still felt rushed, instead of being able to fully relax and enjoy being out in nature; there wasn’t much time left before it would get dark, which meant we had to row briskly.

We got back to the dock just as the sun was beginning to set. The sky turned to a beautiful mix of colors, deep blue and pink. Then it seemed as if I had all the time in the world, though of course time itself hadn’t changed—just the way I was thinking about it happened to be different.

Word-art that says "If you think positive, then positive things will happen."

Nurturing Thursday was started by Becca Givens and seeks to “give this planet a much needed shot of fun, support and positive energy.” Visit her site to find more Nurturing Thursday posts and a list of frequent contributors.

Today at work there was a team meeting in which one of the main topics was developing new skills. Sometimes that can feel intimidating, either because of uncertainty about what skills would be the most useful, or maybe just because things always seem harder when they’re new.

It can be a challenge to imagine future versions of ourselves becoming comfortable in new situations. We’ve had to do it, though, in one way or another, ever since we grew up—and when we look back and reflect on how far we have come since then, our younger selves deserve credit for believing it could happen and for doing a pretty good job of getting there.

Word-art with a kitten seeing its reflection as a tiger; it says "Believe in yourself."

Nurturing Thursday was started by Becca Givens and seeks to “give this planet a much needed shot of fun, support and positive energy.” Visit her site to find more Nurturing Thursday posts and a list of frequent contributors.

A dark, rainy, chilly morning had started to clear by midday, and I went out for a walk in the early afternoon. By then it was mostly sunny, and the wind felt much warmer. Every now and again I would stop and look at a bright spot of color where some crocuses or other spring flowers had come up.

I found myself thinking—what if I had gotten busy and not taken the time to get outdoors until next week? By then, that peaceful early-spring moment would have passed me by, and everything in the landscape would already have changed as the season moved on.

Word-art that says "Life moves pretty fast. If you don't stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it!"

Nurturing Thursday was started by Becca Givens and seeks to “give this planet a much needed shot of fun, support and positive energy.” Visit her site to find more Nurturing Thursday posts and a list of frequent contributors.