Check it out: I completed my mini-bucket list this week! Everything, basically, except for number six on the list, the take lots of naps one. I think I only took one nap. Too busy bucket-listing, I guess. :)
Like sleep, there were a number of other "real life" things on my to-do list for the week that didn't get done, like buy dental insurance, for example. Yeah, I need to do it. But it can also wait, and this week, I tried to prioritize the things that are absolutely essential for my health and well-being - mentally, emotionally, spiritually, physically. And that list did not include buying dental insurance.
I tried not to think about the things I need to do in the future, or the things I should have done already. I actually even tried to not think too much about my mini-bucket list, the things I wanted to "accomplish" during this vacation. When I made it, I tried to keep my bigger-picture priorities in mind - recharging, spending good time with loved ones - and so I am glad that I was able to do a lot of that. But too often (okay, every single time), whether it is in everyday life or whether I have a little vacation time, I make a list - I am a huge list-maker - of Things That Must Be Done. And even on vacation, the list of Things That Must Be Done becomes this sort of onerous task-master, and I feel like I have to try to squeeze in ALL of the relaxing things and ALL of the fun things and ALL of the responsible things and see ALL of the people and then, not only does my vacation not end up feeling very relaxing at all, it also inevitably leaves me feeling like I failed, yet again, to cover all of my bases, because my lists of Things That Must Be Done are epic and invariably can never be completed in the allotted time.
Catching up on sleep was one of my biggest goals for the week, and it didn't happen. But - and this is why I never get caught up on sleep even when I really need to and theoretically could - it was totally worth the trade-off to do all the other things I did. Even though it mostly consisted of just hanging out with family, reading, crafting, exercising, eating, and watching movies, it was exactly what I needed. I needed it even more than I needed the sleep.
I already get myself into trouble on a regular basis for over-scheduling, double-booking, over- or under-estimating the things I can get done and the length of time required to do them, and I am sick of feeling that way on vacations, too. This time, I tried very hard to do something that I am terrible at - to just be present. To do one thing at a time, to stop planning all the other things I wanted to do that day and the rest of the week. I think I was only moderately successful at it. Still, moderate success is moderate success.
I come home pretty much every chance I get, and I think it's because home is like my "reset" button. I am a happier, better person around my family, and time with them just makes me feel... more like me, if that makes any sense. I told my parents tonight that when I am in Atlanta, I am really glad that I decided to go to Emory for medical school. I love the city and I love my friends and I love where I live and I love the school. But every time I come home, I really wonder what I was thinking when I decided not to go to school in Denver.
Relax. Reset. Recharge. Renew.
I started off the week visiting Matt and Alex in Denver. We had some fun with an amazing old pair of glasses we found in their garage, left by some unknown, evidently blind person:
Porky, the dog:
My mom makes the most delicious blueberry pancakes in the world for breakfast:
We went to see The Avengers in the middle of the day, and we did not recycle our glasses:
I spent a lot of time sewing together the pieces of a quilt that I am attempting:
What the finished top of the quilt looks like!:
Vacation is not vacation without a trashy magazine or two:
Dug out these mugs that I bought a long time ago and have never used! They will be perfect in the new house:
Today, Ellen, Mom, Dad, and I went on a hike and climbed Horsetooth Rock, which overlooks the city. The weather was perfect and the scenery gorgeous as always:
The view from the top:
Long's Peak in the background, with storm clouds rolling in from the south:
We did 27 birthday pushups at the top in honor of Martin's 27th birthday today:
And then topped off the summit experience with a little mountain yoga:
I was going to leave this without any explanation, because Ellen just looks so funny in this picture, but she is actually smelling a fir tree species whose bark smells like butterscotch from close-up. Just a little trick that Mom taught us when we were little:
No real fauna to be found today, but flora all around:
Tonight ended my favorite way of all time, with family games and hilarity: