Wednesday, February 25, 2015

101 ways my life is better now than 20 years ago (when I was younger and thinner)

Sometimes I need to take a moment or 20 to remind myself how much good is in my life now, and how even though I used to be young and thin things are still much, MUCH better now!

1.  I'm married to the most wonderful man in the world who keeps me sane and cleans house and cooks better than I do (seriously, he even makes pie crusts).
2.  I have the most amazing little girl who I love more than I ever imagined possible.
3.  I get to take bubble baths on a regular basis.
4.  I have a great big garden tub for taking bubble baths in.
5.  I have company for my bubble baths (which makes the garden tub even more important).
6.  I have some nice fluffy towels.
7.  And a stained glass window over the tub (I've totally wanted one of those for years).
8.  For that matter, I married a man with pretty stained glass in his coffee table and lamp.  I tell him I married him just so I could live with his coffee table.
9.  I have a smart phone, and it's red, and has games!
10.  I drive a car that I bought new, and it gets 42.6 MPG.
11.  I care about the gas consumption of my car.
12.  I know that my hair is curly, not just frizzy, and sometimes I know what to do with it.
13.  I have hair dye, and I'm not afraid to use it, in a variety of colors... some of them never occurred in nature.
14.  I only have one zit at the moment, and sometimes not even one, and I don't have that many wrinkles yet either.
15.  I've realized that I have pretty good eyebrows with very minimal (and not at all painful) maintenance.
16.  I know enough to get confused by the rule differences between college and pro football.
17.  I have really comfortable pajamas, with pockets!
18.  I know how to knit.  Not that I know everything about knitting, but I tried to learn three times, and failed the first two.
19.  I know how to sew well enough to make my own purse.
20.  I'm beginning to understand what colors look good on me, what a "soft summer" is, and that I don't look good in black.
21.  I have walls in my house that are different colors, and not a single one is off-white.
22.  I get along well with my mother despite her predilection for off-white walls.
23.  I have a really great duvet cover of good thick, heavy cloth that stands up really well to cat claws.
24.  I have several different kinds of ice cream in my freezer, and know of at least three kinds that are better than anything I had growing up.
25.  I have popsicles too.
26.  And Yorks.
27.  And dark chocolate M&M's (not in the freezer) which they didn't even make 20 years ago.
28.  I know what good grapefruit is, and that I can only get it at one time of year, and that time is now so I have a bag of it in my refrigerator.
29.  I have a job that is intellectually stimulating, but not all-consuming (so I still have time to knit and do laundry).
30.  I know several different salad recipes that I like well enough that I could easily eat salad every day.  I probably should eat salad every day, but that's another story.
31.  I live in a neighborhood with a pool, not that the pool's open most of the year or anything, but it's nice to have one in the summer when I remember to shave my legs.
32.  I know what ADD is, and how it affects my life, and some things that I can do to work with it, and sometimes how to medicate it.  That's a nice change of pace to just not understanding why I was so terrible at school.
33.  I have learned what to do to take care of my back so it doesn't hurt randomly.  Yay inversion table!
34.  I have toe socks.
35.  I have The Sound of Music on DVD.
36.  I have read the Lord of the Rings, several times.
37.  And The Wheel of Time, but only once (it's a lot longer).
38.  And a lot of other good stuff, not just SciFi and Fantasy.
39.  And a lot of other complete and utter crap, so I have something for comparison.  It helps to really appreciate the good stuff.
40.  I have an understanding of why some literature is really great, and have read some really great stuff on my own.  I also know enough to feel that my opinions are valid, so I can intelligently say that some of the crap they made us read in school really was crap.
41.  And some of it would have been good if they hadn't edited out the good parts and let us have enough time to read the whole thing (hello Odyssey!).
42.  I have a Kindle, and it fits in my purse a LOT better than most of the books listed above, and can hold many of them at one time (which makes reading serieses back to back a lot more convenient).  The dictionary says series is already plural and then goes on to use it repeatedly in examples as "a series".  I have "a cat" in my lap, but not "a cats" so I'm respectfully disagreeing with the dictionary and saying that series is singular and using "serieses" as the plural form to refer to multiple serieses.
43.  I feel free to disagree with the dictionary.
44.  Kindle text-to-speech, makes all kinds of house work more bearable.
45.  I have a bed in which I sleep more comfortably than I have ever before in my life, now if only I had the time to use it.
46.  I have a really old and squashed into shape body pillow without which I can't sleep worth anything, but with which my back doesn't hurt.
47.  I've learned enough about art, all the arts really (visual, written, performing...), to understand its progression and how the forms relate to each other so it really is only one progression followed by all the arts, and don't feel like I've missed out on much just because I can never remember the various dates when things happened and the start and end of all the periods.
48.  I've learned that even if I understand it, it doesn't mean I have to like it, and to collect only what I love (that goes for paintings as well as films and music).
49.  I've learned that if I buy it simply because it was a good deal that won't make me love it later on. 
50.  Which means I should really only buy toilet paper on a good deal, cause eventually I'll use that up anyway.  If it hangs on the wall (or in my closet) I should only buy it if I love it.
51.  I've learned that I can fix a lot of things that I never would have thought possible (having the internet and a good set of tools helps).
52.  I've learned that sometimes if it's going to be done right I have to do it, and sometimes things are worth doing right.
53.  I've learned that my time is worth something, so sometimes it's worth the convenience of having someone else do it.
54.  I've learned that some things are better left to the professionals.  Maybe I COULD find and fix that leak under the sink, but the plumber will do it a lot quicker, and it'll look a lot neater when he's done.  Also, I'll worry about it coming undone less.
55.  I've learned that worrying rarely helps a situation.  That doesn't mean I don't worry, but I try not to. After all, thinking about a problem can lead to thinking of a solution.
56.  I have coffee that's better than Starbucks on a daily basis, and it's fixed by someone who knows exactly how I like it without having to ask.
57.  There's an oak tree and a Japanese maple in the front yard, I've totally always wanted those.
58.  I have every color of Play-Doh known to man on my coffee table (and embedded in my carpet), and some colors not known to man.
59.  Cable.
60.  Tivo.
61.  Netflix.
62.  Hulu.
63.  Amazon (for a plethora of reasons, not just my viewing pleasure).
64.  And a husband who doesn't regard me as a lazy bum if I spend hours viewing any of the above (when my daughter will let me).
65.  YouTube, with my daughter, for hours.
66.  My commute is from my bedroom to my basement, only way it could be shorter would be if it stopped in my living room.
67.  My hours are really flexible, and only VERY rarely start before 10:30 AM.
68.  I finally managed to stop biting my fingernails.
69.  Two kitties that like to snuggle up and keep me warm!
70.  My husband gave me a SpotBot for my birthday a few years back that does a great job cleaning up behind said kitties when they throw up on the floor.  I know, husbands are not supposed to give anything even remotely vacuum related to a wife as any sort of present, but...
71.  My husband knows me well enough to know when to break the rules.
72.  My husband values the appliances as much as I do.
73.  And uses them every bit as much as I do.
74.  Sometimes more.
75.  I've found a birdfeeder that's almost entirely made of metal and sturdy enough to stand up to the raccoons.
76.  There are raccoons that regularly show interest in the bird feeder, so I get to watch them.
77.  I get to watch the cats watching them, and that's one of the best things ever!
78.  I hold out hope for them coming early enough for my daughter to see them one day.
79.  There are deer that regularly wander through my yard, much to the chagrin of my azelias and hostas.
80.  My daughter enjoys watching them even more than I do.
81.  My daughter has learned to feed the cats.
82.  She's also learned to peel and eat boiled eggs.  These two things are not related.
83.  Recliner couch!  These used to be two separate things, but now I know better.
84.  I have neighbors close enough so that I can play in the snow with their kids.
85.  I have a daughter of an age that makes this not creepy.
86.  Instead it makes me the sainted neighbor who keeps the other parents from having to venture out far in the snow.
87.  Said neighbors also partake in my random baked goods, which are generally sweets, so I REALLY don't need to keep the whole batch of whatever my recent craving led me to make.  I LOVE the neighbors that save me from the fudge!
88.  I've come to the realization that I have more house than I need.  And I have the smallest house in the neighborhood.  It's nice to not have house envy.
89.  It's nice to not have envy in general.  I've come to realize I've been blessed in so many ways, and to be happy with enough.
90.  I have three generations of the Better Homes and Gardens cookbook, and have learned that it's a great reference for all kinds of foods.  Even if I'm making a recipe from somewhere else, if it doesn't have clear instructions I can look in the Better Homes and Gardens cookbook for similar recipes and generally fill in the blanks.
91.  I regularly have TWO Christmas trees.
92.  I've come to realize that ALL kinds of clothing can be altered in ALL kinds of ways, to make them fit better, or more comfortable, or less annoying.
93.  This includes bras.
94.  I've learned I don't have to get it right the first time.  I can keep tweaking it, and trying it until I get it the way I want it.
95.  I've learned that sometimes my Mom does a better job organizing my house/stuff than I do, and to just go with it and take advantage of her while I can.
96.  I've really just learned to appreciate my parents all around in ways I never knew possible, but particularly my Mom.  Which is awesome because we all know mother-daughter relationships tend to be a bit tenuous.
97.  I've learned I can't buy self-worth.
98.  I've learned I can feel better by exercising self control and holding off on a purchase until I've really thought it through.  And sometimes there's more power in not buying something, especially when my reasons are well thought out.
99.  I've learned that I don't need to impress the lady in the shop by showing what-all I can buy.  And that I can be friendly and nice while still saying NO.
100.  I know that sometimes it's nice to know that you have enough to cover all the bases, but seriously I could get rid of 90% of what I have in my china cabinet and never miss it.
101.  I've learned that my capacity to love is unlimited, and only needs a new person or situation or way to love to stretch it's bounds.

I've been working on this list for a couple months.  I'm sure I've missed plenty of things, and I hope I don't have to many duplicates, but it's late so I'm not going through and rereading it just to miss them the second time around.