Life, Picture Post

What I Have Learned After A Year of Being Single and A New Book Challenge

So, Hello! I just pulled the cat from the couch, how are you? It’s been a couple of months, but everything is very well here. I was officially hired by Plum Creek, so I got about a seven dollar raise. That and all the overtime I work helps out a lot. I have never finished out a pay period with money left over, and I was able to do that. Being financially stable is an amazing thing, it is a new thing, and it is something I have come to enjoy greatly.

It’s been a busy year. Changed jobs, moved (twice), and my car broke down. The super big things. Who knows I may move a third time before 2014 is over. I’ve learned a lot about myself in the past year (September to September, and I am aware that it is October). After the dramatic shift my life took, I wasn’t sure what to expect. Thankfully, I’ve had an amazing support team along the way. I learned that it isn’t as awkward as I thought it would be to go to the movies with myself. It’s also easier to coordinate movie dates and dinners with friends when it’s only you. But let me make a list, as I have grown to love lists. I have also grown to forget them a lot.

1) Cooking for one: Surprisingly a super hard thing to relearn. I went for a while cooking for two people, but one of those people had a two person appetite. A pound of bacon wouldn’t be enough. A block of cheese would last a day, and a box of pasta would be dinner for one. Once the Shift (I should really just call it that all the time) occurred, I found I was still buying for more than myself, and a lot of food went to waste. At the time that wasn’t cool because I wasn’t making a whole lot of money and that was just lost funds over time. I started to buy small frozen meals. Good for portion control, terrible for sodium levels. Then I went through a snacks only phase. So many pistachios were consumed over a few months, as well as candies and goldfish crackers. Oh, dear me, do not get me started on the goldfish crackers. I could have wholesaled out of my room with how many packages I had bought and subsequently consumed. Now, I eat what I want. If I want to eat a whole meal of red curry shrimp, I will. Most days I have a salad for lunch. I’ll have two corndogs for dinner if I work midnights, and I’m okay with that.

2) Making Friends: Before the Shift, I had the friends I had always had. Those that stuck with me through everything. After it, it was like a whole new world of people was opened up before me. I rarely went to bars before September of last year, because I was with someone and they never wanted to go. Last November I started to work at Target and met people that wanted me to hang out with them at bars. So, nervous the first time I went out, I don’t talk to anyone at the table. Somehow I still won them over. They kept inviting me back, I became their friend, we shared stories and hung out together. I had never had bar friends, and now I did (/do). I was an introvert among introverts, we all hated coming out of our houses and socializing. But, we had found a common place to hang out with people just like ourselves, and I don’t know if extroverts know how amazing and magical it can be.

3) Flirting: Apparently, I’m good at it. In all of my weirdness and all of my quirks, I’m apparently good at flirting. I did not know this.

4) Roommates: I have had very few good roommates experiences. Before I moved to Portland, I lived with a (now former) boyfriend and various other roommates in that same house. I loved that house. I lived with good people, and for the most part we got along. Then I moved a few times and I was tired of moving. This time last year though, my best friend Ky and her husband, offered me their spare room. Now, Ky wasn’t a new friend. She and I had met back in 2009 when I started at Teletech. Our friendship grew over time and slowly she became my best friend. When I was living in Beaverton and her and her husband told me they were going to visit Portland, I immediately offered my space to them and they offered a space to me. I trust them 100% and I know they would never let me down. We have our ups and downs, but I have learned so much from them and they have helped me grow as a human being. I tell them all the time that I don’t need to be married because I get to be around them and the happiness they share is enough for me. I wouldn’t trade their friendship for the world.

Maybe more of a list later… I already feel like this post is stretching on and on and on. But, I wanted to talk about the book challenge I’m going to start on January 1st, 2015. It’s a reading list, pulled from the front and back covers of a book called

    501 Must Read Books

.
Courtesy of Google Image Search

That is the book. I bought it at The Bookshelf in Kalispell. I picked it up, took it to the counter, and told the clerk (Mary is her name) that I was going to read all of them in a year. That’s 1.37 books a day and 9.63 books a week. I’m still shooting for that goal, It’s not entirely unattainable, a bit unrealistic but not unattainable. Some of them are about 800 pages long though, others are around 250-300 pages. It all comes down to time management. If I don’t finish in a year, then the challenge will be to see how long it takes me to read them all.

There is a list online if you want to see the selection of what I’m going to be reading here. I challenge you to try it out too. It’ll be a fun year expanding your reading ventures. I’ll try to update every week over the coming year what I finished, thoughts on the process, and so on. Bad Rock Books and The Bookshelf are going to get a lot of business from me, as well as the library.

Well, I’ve said a lot here, more than I’ll probably write in all of NaNoWriMo next month.

Have a good October everyone!

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