On desk diaries and To Do lists. 

I love To Do lists, and I’ve kept a desk diary since I was eight years old. I think it’s one of the more compulsive sides of my INTJ nature, but it also serves the very practical purpose of helping me accomplish my goals. It just makes me want to do more. 

Gym? Check. Laundry? Check. Book query? Check. Blog? Working on it. 

I’ve had too many things on my list lately, which initially made me very frustrated. I like the satisfaction of closing out a week or even month with an entire list completed. But life has had other ideas, the result of which has been a large and ongoing list of longer-ranging goals.

After several weeks of frankly being entirely ticked off, it occurred to me that these longer items were the result of two primary things: A full life and bigger dreams.

I have a good career that keeps me busy. I have words in my heart that constantly need put on paper. I have a gym to go to, a venture that is giving me immense satisfaction, a full travel schedule, beautiful fur babies, family to see, and dreams to soak in, soak up, and realize.

So, while I still love my desk diary, it’s no longer my leader, but rather a complement to my life. A friend who reminds me that even though life isn’t always what I think it should be or easy or even fun, it is so very worth it.
NaBloWriMo Day 2? … Check. (Kidding! Sort of.)

What’s in your fridge?

When I kissed my luxury condo goodbye some time ago, the most time wasn’t spent on sorting clothes or knick-knacks. Strangely, it was the food that took forever.

Did you know that poppy seeds can go rancid?

According to the internetz, nuts — like seeds — are high in oils (duh), and thus can get bitter/go rancid, and otherwise end up pretty disgusting and useless. I had a five year old jar of poppy seeds in my cupboard. Suffice it to say the poppy seeds didn’t come with me to England.

Months later, here I am in Manchester, and do you know what I have? A mini fridge, folks. I’m talking college-freshman-in-a-dorm mini fridge. And do you know what’s so amazing about this? It’s enough. To Westerners, and Americans in particular, that’s a pretty foreign concept. I think my adaptability has surprised even me.

But, here’s the thing: you can only eat so many calories in a day (assuming you want to be a generally healthy person), and grocery stores are not yet going out of style, though I do suspect Amazon’s proposed takeover of Whole Foods will be a game-changer for the industry.

As it sits, I consume roughly 1400 calories per day. This amounts to a simple breakfast of tea with yogurt or muesli, some sort of grain, protein and fruit for lunch, and typically a protein-heavy dinner. None of what I just described requires an “American-sized refrigerator,” as the Brits and Aussies call them, or a Costco membership.

All it requires is a mini fridge.

I don’t have my poppy seeds anymore. Or my two year old packages of pasta noodles, 5lb bag of flour or that rotting cucumber I bought last October. Instead, I have a two to three day supply of fresh food, as well as a small shelf of longer-lasting items like Hobnobs and tea.

And let me tell you, that fresh food supply is glorious. I savor every single thing in my little mini fridge, because it was purchased with a purpose. I no longer meander through the grocery loading up a cart. I think strategically about what can fit into a bag or two, how long those items will be good and where I can use those items over the course of a couple of days — sliced avocado in a salad for dinner one night; mashed avocado on toast with a boiled egg for lunch the next day, for instance.

This idea, this theory — The Mini Fridge Theory, if you will — is a metaphor for my life. Five years ago, all I wanted was a bigger home — more curb appeal, more grass, more bedrooms, more granite counter tops…more, more, more. Two years ago, I wanted more luxury, more prestige, more respect from society.

But today?

Today, all I want is my mini fridge. My freedom. My statement to the world that my place on this planet isn’t about how much space I can take up but how little space I can consume while seeing how much of the world I can explore.

Blueberries, plums, yogurt, cheese, Charcuterie meats. That’s what’s in my fridge right now.

What’s in yours?