Steve's birthday this year was a weekend long celebration. We went to the beach, scheduled a massage for the birthday boy, celebrated with cake and candles and a special birthday dinner a day early, and were surprised by glorious weather on his actually birthday. To our surprise, he was off of work early and we celebrated sitting outside in the sunshine, riding dirtbikes in the yard, and getting pizza for dinner. Simple pleasures all stacked up to make a truly celebratory weekend. 36 years old. I can't believe how time passes, but I do like his birthdays, as he slowly catches up to my age each year. When I turned 37 this last October and he was still 35 until this March, we seemed further apart in years, as we do each year. 36 to 37 is much closer you see, he can see the stage of life we have entered, passing over that mid thirty hump. It is an interesting stage, not young but not old, time passing so quickly it is hard to savor the days, but how I yearn to do just that. I'm trying to slow it all down and to just soak it in.
We have crossed a few things off our list these last few weeks. Piano competitions, dental visits, a trip to Utah, family pictures, and just the daily tasks of life are keeping us busy. We have been working a lot on our home and our yard, simplifying and completing projects that need attention. The weather has been spectacular. We pinch ourselves most days, wondering when the sunshine will end. I keep waiting for the relentless springtime rain, and though we have had a few days here and there, we have just had so many beautiful days. Not like springtime in the Pacific Northwest at all, but I'm certainly not complaining, just observing and enjoying.
I tried a new recipe this last week, a Bacon, Avocado, and Corn Salad. Yum. Big on flavor and so enjoyable. I finished our spring and summer menu planning a couple weeks ago and we have been enjoying lighter and fresher meals and a few new recipes. I served the salad with cornbread and it was a huge success. It made a big batch and I ate the leftovers for a couple days. I'm big on leftovers you see.
I have been stitching and knitting away as I have been catching up on a few TV series. I have been a bit obsessed with cross stitching, wanting to do it every time I sit down. I also whipped out a few of these washcloths, trying to build up a small stash for coming events. They are so easy to knit and completely addicting. We don't have cable, so I usually don't watch much TV until Spring when I purchase a Hulu subscription and catch up on my shows. It is a nice way to spend the evenings. I only have few that I keep up on and I hesitate to add more to my list of must watch since it cuts into my reading time, but I am hoping to find a new series to watch with Steve. We haven't had one we have watched together in awhile that we have both really enjoyed. Any suggestions?
Lately Steve and I have enjoyed reading Essentialism by Greg McKeown and have both really savored the thoughtful conversation that it has created. I'm definitely the reader in our relationship and am that one that forges ahead with pulling out the book "just to read a few pages" but he seems to enjoy it as much as I do. I've been reminding myself lately that sometimes I assume that Steve knows all that is going on in my head. I have read a lot on minimalism in the last couple years and have wanted to make major changes in our lives. At times I have been frustrated when we have discussed changes to be made and he isn't as excited as I am. This book has been so good for us, it speaks to us both, and has us on the same page with thoughts, feelings, and real discussions on things we can change in our lives. I'm excited to see its influence and what changes we will make together. Just another way that books connect and communicate when words sometimes fail.
I'm heading outside this afternoon, throwing a blanket on our green, green grass and spending a little time with my planner and a lot of time with good book while the kids play in the sunshine. Slowing down, enjoying the moments, soaking it all in. Life is good.