Saturday, January 15, 2011

Hello Beautiful Morning! (^^,)

So it's really early, but I have already finished the following:

  • Prepared myself a full breakfast and have enjoyed it (no coffee yet though, because though my throat is no longer achey, it still gets dry and irritated)
  • Organized and kept the dried dishes from last night in their respective cabinets
  • Washed the dishes this morning, cleaned the counters, and cleaned the sink
  • Watered the plants
  • Swept the backyard (every couple of hours or so, there's been plenty of dried leaves falling from the trees that shelter our backyard - minsan may nakasakay na uod XD)
  • Fixed and priced some items for sale
  • Spent some time enjoying the sun

And that is because I have just decided last night to get up before sunrise everyday (^^,)

I read somewhere that it is best to wake up early in the morning if you want to be most productive, and I will keep doing just that (^^,) So as I start on today's tasks, I am happily aware that it is Only Eight in the Morning XD (While 311 plays in the background and my entire room smells like lavender - sweet!)

Thursday, January 13, 2011

(Fresh) Strawberry Cheesecake

Strawberry Cheesecake, made with fresh strawberries by my sister (^^,)

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Ube. Yum.

Chokomochi is eating ube jam / halaya and wishes she can give some to Dan-kun. I've been wanting to give him ube things since he said he has never tried Ube Cake and would like to try to some XD

So anyway, we came back from Baguio last Thursday XD It was one of the best trips I've had - everything was so much fun and it was one of the best bonding moments with my family. Most of the trip was just fun, nature, food, and super lovely weather.

Yesterday was the first kendo practice of the year and I missed someone So Much especially when I'd look and he wouldn't be there (T_T) In any case, I lasted, surprisingly, considering that I was not able to practice at all during the holidays (^^U) My side hurt really badly sometime during keiko, but I managed with several very short breaths, because I didn't want to stop. Fortunately, I recovered after just a few minutes, and by the last kirikaeshi I felt alive again.

After practice we went out for dinner at Tokyo Cafe (my and my sister's meals care of Allan ^_^) after which I ordered their Sumibiyaki which I really liked (^^,)

At home, I've been replacing kitchen stuff and getting more involved with all the cleaning and gardening, because I find that it is all quite therapeutic and relaxing in its own way.

Ever since the vacation too, I notice that my body kind of slows down around 11 pm, so I have been sleeping early since I got back. My latest bed time was a little past midnight. And then I wake up at around 7 or 8, and so now I get to eat breakfast, and I get hungry just in time for lunch. The vacation did my body clock a lot of good (^^,) My sister said she also experiences something similar, and I said I think it's great that our system has sort of become more balanced than before. I hope this lasts (^^,)

Somehow, I find myself feeling excited about this whole year and what it will bring, though I am not sure what exactly I am excited about; I just know they are good things. And I think my New Year's Resolutions will help things fall into place just fine (^^,)

Saturday, January 1, 2011

New Year's Resolutions

A long time ago, I have stopped coming up with New Year's Resolutions. Partly, it was because the excitement and motivation that is present at the start of the year dwindles as days pass, and I realize that all the idealistic goals I set seemed so easy to fulfill only because I was feeling quite festive from the holidays. Also, I would tell myself that I do not have to wait for the New Year to address issues or make changes that should or can be addressed or made before that, or anytime after that. 

The past year, though, has brought me a lot of lessons. Of course, each year does. But this time, the lessons were more pronounced, just as the consequences of some mistakes and the fruits of certain efforts were more apparent and effectively ingrained into my being. Especially during the last quarter of 2010, more and more signs and guides and answers came to me. Signs that were not just those I wanted to see - signs that sometimes hurt a little. The guides came most frequently. They came in various forms - books that someone owned that I happened to browse through, things my mom owned that I happened to find as I helped her with chores, friends who were there all this time, and wisdom shared by people close to me, which went a long, long way, and are still being helpful to me now. As for the answers, I found some by following the guides that came, some by simply asking someone my questions, and some I found from within me. 

And then, for the first time again after a long time, I felt that despite some worries and things I somehow fear that are in store for 2011, I was ready to face the new year. I know I need to be braver and more aware, but I feel much more ready than anything else. It is a pleasant mixture of excitement and calm. Think of the warm sun on your face and arms, as the cool wind blows against you - that kind of pleasant mixture. (That was what the weather was like today - and it was almost like a good sign, or an approval from the Universe, that things are becoming more balanced.)

And so, I was in the right state of mind, heart, and body to be able to easily name doable, practical, and sustainable New Year's Resolutions. I have started them some time during the last couple of months of 2010, but this time, I have the conscious intention of keeping them for the rest of the year, or even the rest of my life. 

There are actually more things, but I am listing the 10 things off the top of my head. And yes, "more" things actually count as my New Year's Resolutions, and that might sound impossible as one or two often end up going down the drain after a few weeks or months, but as I mentioned earlier, these resolutions are doable, practical, and sustainable. And did I mention they are simple and basic things anyone can do? Some things require practice, but they are still much easier to do for many people than religiously going to the gym three times a week. (I am one of those who rarely went to a gym.)

1. Regularly do clutter-clearing, immediately packing and pricing the things for selling. This also involves having broken things dispatched right away for repair, or fixing and sewing them myself if I can. 

2. Move more. Avoid sitting for hours in front of the computer, or a game, or movie marathons. If I do watch or play, I should take breaks and tidy up in between. 

3. Study and practice my Nihongo more often even when there are no classes. (I'm starting a handwritten journal today in Nihongo. I wrote my first couple of posts this morning!)

4. Use more of the makeup that I buy and have, instead of just letting them expire and go to waste. This means refraining from being lazy! I often go out without using them because I feel lazy preparing and applying. Lately I have used the beautiful stuff I have to match the look I have on! (On New Year's Eve I wore a red top with Japanese designs so I wore Japanesque eye makeup and rosy blush.)

5. Watch more of the movies, series, and anime that I have, then decide which ones to keep, which ones to resell, and which ones to give away. I will also do that for the rest that I will be buying or getting. I realize I have accumulated a lot and I would forget then I'd keep buying more. So, time to watch and catch up with them, and sort them after. The same goes with games.

6. Drink more water daily. More water than coffee and tea.

7. Focus more on the beauty and joy of others and see how these can inspire and help me live a richer, fuller life, instead of wondering why I don't have that form of beauty and joy.

8. Avoid Delaying Tactics. Just do and act. 

9. Learn when to detach and just go with the flow whenever necessary. 

10. Stop and see the beauty around me or to think of good thoughts, and let them work their magic in me.

Happy New Year, everyone! I wish all of you plenty of happiness and peace in your homes and your hearts.
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