I am sipping coffee in the stillness of the local co-work space. It’s quite early, and there’s rarely anyone else but me here at this hour. I enjoy the quiet time. Good for writing, reading, and thinking. I woke quite early. I woke with a vicious headache. Not the usual, that’s there in the background, too – no, this one is “special”. I think I must have slept on my neck wrong, and instead of waking with a kink in my neck and pain in my shoulder, the aggravation is painful at the top of my neck/base of my skull – like a tension headache, but more intense. I’d kind of like to just… twist my head off and toss it in the bin next to this desk. LOL Fuuuuuuuck.

As with change, headaches are – and this one will pass. I mean, eventually. lol

For now, I am sipping coffee and drinking water, more or less in alternation. The handful of medications I now take on a more or less set schedule results in choosing to carry a small pill box. I start the day with each of the medications I take right there in my pocket, and when the relevant alarm goes off, I take a moment to take my medication. Unavoidable evidence of aging, I suppose. I’m okay with it; the pillbox is a change that has resulted in being “more on time” and I haven’t missed a dose of anything even once since I started carrying the wee screw-top enameled tin along with me. It does mean that having planned ahead, I’ve got adequate Ibuprofen for the headache. lol That’s something. It’s not everything, but it is helpful. I take a couple with a big drink of water, feeling quite adult being so prepared. πŸ˜€

…I’m probably totally screwed once I have multiple pills that look alike all jostling each other in a wee pillbox, but for now they are easy to identify.

It’s Giftmas already?!

It’s almost Giftmas. My beloved Traveling Partner has been busy in the shop, and still managed to slip a couple gifts under the tree for me. He’s got a festive little assortment waiting for him there, too. Happily, and without any stress driving the decision, he’s given me a couple of mine already – can I just say I love presents that are so clearly selected with genuine affection and a deep understanding of “who I am”? πŸ˜€ Practical or silly – he gets me. I sit here with that thought, grinning to myself and thinking about my two new Barbies. (Yes. Even as I approach 60. lol) I feel loved. Another gift was given as it arrived; it was just so much bigger than he’d anticipated, and it was going to be a pain in the ass to wrap it – and no way it was actually going to fit under the tree. That and I think he was just really excited to see it in use, and try it out himself… My first Instant Pot! It’s a bit fancy and has an air fryer lid and 11 functions. Just…wow. So much to learn and to try. πŸ˜€ This may be the secret to (me) making a proper pot roast, at long last! (My attempts to cook a good pot roast have been pretty dreadful in the past… I am eager to do better.)

I hope I never feel “too old to play”.

Barbie-wise, can I just say how much it delights me that Mattel now makes Barbie in various body types, skin colors, ethnic features, and levels of ability (far beyond what they ever had originally). I love seeing Barbie as an astronaut or the president – and I also love seeing her in a wheel-chair, or as a very dark black girl. I love “seeing myself” in Barbie with pink or teal hair, in jeans, with a camera in her hand, or a backpack on. I love seeing the many other sorts of beauty and lived experience in Barbie, too; it makes for a more complete “world to play in”. My partner got me my first “curvy” Barbies! They look more like me than the classic tall/thin/weird/white Barbie. πŸ™‚

I did indeed make pot roast, the night before I left for the coast, and it was very tasty. I probably could have cooked it for a somewhat shorter time (the roast was on the small side of the recipe recommendations), and although it wasn’t “dry”, it was a bit more done than my partner and I prefer generally. On the other hand, it made amazing roast beef sandwiches a couple days later. Success? I think so. πŸ˜€ My partner made french fries using the air fryer (as part of lunch the day I returned from the coast). Super yummy. Another success. πŸ˜€ I’m not surprised that I’ll need some practice and some learning. I think back to his gift to me of a wok earlier this year and how that completely transformed my cooking in wonderful ways… I’m excited to discover how this new tool fits into my experience.

I’m excited for the holiday, and it is approaching quickly. I laugh at myself when I think of how little time and planning or effort has really gone into it so far this year. Different. I’m okay with it. It’s a gentle approach, and with all the goings on in my partner’s shop and developing his business, it was very much a conscious decision to make the holiday a modest one, more about love than exchanging gifts, and more about the quality of the time we share than elaborate dΓ©cor or parties. I smile like a little girl when I think about my new Barbies. So far it is an awesome Giftmas.

Work pulls my focus for a moment. A calendar notification reminds me that the work day is beginning. A ping from my boss reminds me that my work is valued. It competes for my attention briefly; I check the clock. I’ve got about an hour that is still “all mine”. I smile, sip my coffee, and get ready to begin again.