Thursday, September 03, 2015

New territory

Can't wait for sparklemotion #nmcdgsept15 #hyattlife @hyatt_etoile

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I either have allergies or am coming down with the summer cold. This happened to me during Snowdrop Mania in February and I was not amused, but for the most part I soldiered on. I'm going to do the best I can tomorrow to get to Giverny . I have some ibuprofen  and what I believe to be an antihistamine, so down the hatch they go.

My goal this trip is to see four things I've never seen before (not in a particular order):

Giverny
Vaux le Vicomte 
La Grande Arche
The new park for Clichy and Batignolles 
and if I'm lucky on my way home from Vaux on Saturday - I'll hit the small park near the Palais de Decouverte.

I try and plan and make sure I do things in the most efficient routing possible. I hate retracing my steps, so I make mental maps and then validate them on paper or on-line maps. I still get lost and sometimes things don't work out - delays happen, new and interesting things are discovered or you fall ill and decide that a day in bed is better than four hours on a bus.

I've got a few good decades left in me - most of these places have been around for a long time and are likely to be there next year and the year after.

Are you happy doing the same thing trip after trip or are you always looking for new things to do when you travel?


Wednesday, September 02, 2015

Thinking about packing





This is one in a series of boring posts,  which I hope you will find helpful about how I pack for trips so that I'm ready for anything and nothing gets wasted.  First you need to think about your trip and I give you several questions to think about before you start the process.

I wish I could say I’m a packing pro, but I’m not.  My conferences and meetings do not happen in boardrooms or ballrooms. I don’t possess a navy or black suit with three contrasting silk shells. I’m more of a skirt and sweater girl, but even that can be pushing it depending on the meeting I’m attending.  I saw more cargo shorts and polo shirts at my last meeting than business casual attire.





These days I’m doing more leisure travel which can be even more vexing in terms of packing.  I’m not confident I’ve picked the right mix of clothing types.  Will I sweat through every t-shirt I bring and what happens if I get a blister and need to swap out shoes? What if I get cold or too hot?

The great thing is most of the places like I go are in the first world and thanks to globalization – I’m likely to be within spitting distance of a GAP, so I can replenish my wardrobe if necessary.  Better yet, I can subscribe to the weather alerts for the places I’m visiting to get a better idea of what to expect on the ground. 

So, here are my rules to pack efficiently for a trip to the first world.  It takes time and a few iterations to get it right, just like product/market fit.  My objective when it comes to packing is to make sure that everything I bring get used during the trip.

Before starting to pack ask yourself these questions:

What is your packing goal for this trip?
Are you checking luggage?
How are you traveling? Will you be moving around or staying in one place long enough to dry your smalls over night?
Are you participating in an activity that requires event-specific apparel and shoe wear?
Are you the kind of person that can eat a ripe peach wearing a white t-shirt and have it remain white?
Are you averse to washing out smalls in sinks if necessary?
Are you okay wearing the same shirt or pants two days in a row?
Are you comfortable relying on hotel bathroom amenities and leaving your own stuff at home?
Are you planning or willing to buy new clothes on your trip?
How much electronic/craft equipment will you be bringing along with you?

Once you answer those questions – you can start thinking of the most efficient way to pack for your trip so that you can feel confident in your choices and not get cranky when you find you packed five pairs of socks and no smalls.




Tuesday, September 01, 2015

The first of the month

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Hello September!  I managed to post each day last month - even if it was a photo with some terse comment.  This month I plan to do better - really!

I'm looking forward to a long flight with a new tapestry and some Orphan Black - now available to download on your i-device or a-device as long as you are an Amazon Prime member. I'm not sure if it will work if you are overseas, but like with many things, VPN is a great solution.

I bought a new suitcase this week - my old girl had over a million miles on her and it was time to trade her for something a little sleeker. I'll give you a report soon. Everyone has their issues with their bags and packing. I seem to have a great way to pack but at the last minute, I start to panic. Mostly this revolves around accessories and shoes.  

No one cares, but I know that you do and you can make yourself crazy.

Off to change out purses again and look for a pair of shoes to go with my purse.



Monday, August 31, 2015

Summer's End

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It was chilly this morning when I started in Portland and by the time I got to Wapato, it was roasting (relatively speaking). I love the high highs and the lower lows we're having these days. What I do hate is the darkness. In the winter, I love the first time it is still light at 5:15 pm and it feels amazing to be gardening at 7pm in April. By July, we're in a summer light rut - we have had so much of it, we stop taking it for granted.

 As I swept up have the branches from our big sycamores out front today, I realized that the light is fading so much earlier. While our house is light and airy most of the time, the front rooms don't get a lot of evening light - so everything feels dark and hopeless inside even as early as 6 pm these days.  I was happy to put on my jacket to sweep and prune just to be in the light.

I'm not looking forward to the next fifteen weeks of shortened days and weaker light. I'm trying to spend as much time outside as possible to soak up as many photons as possible. Its a coping mechanism, but it works.

Happy September.


Sunday, August 30, 2015

Sunday in Portland Wrap Up

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Number of cups of coffee consumed: 5 (all decaf)

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Number of waxed mustaches spotted: 6
Number of books purchased: 6

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Number of tasty meals: 2.5
Number of not so tasty meals: 0
Number of needlepoint canvases purchased: 5
Number of dogs I played tug and catch with today in a needlepoint shop: 1
Number of rain showers experienced: 3

All in all not a bad Sunday.


Saturday, August 29, 2015

Friday, August 28, 2015

September Goals

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My goal for August was to post every day to this blog and also to log my food everyday. I am doing pretty well on both fronts. Nothing has changed on the food front - I eat a lot, exercise some and would make my naturopath very cranky if she was to peruse my food logs.

So, what should I do for the month of September? I have travel, schedule changes, more stress and unlike some people hate chunky sweaters and boots.

Food challenge? Actually eat seven to ten servings of fruits and veg a day? Possibly.
Writing challenge? Perhaps post usable content?
Brand challenge? Stop being so schizophrenic and drill down to what I want to achieve with my writing?
Mood challenge? Try to not be so cranky?
Health challenge? Attempt to get over six hours of sleep?

SO.MANY.THINGS.

Do you think I'm up for it?

Now off to confess my eating indiscretions - thanks Alaska Airlines fruit and cheese plate.