I posted this image mostly because I love squirrels.
This is a rather new found love. Although I’ve always been an animal lover overall, squirrels didn’t necessarily make the cut at the top five — or even top ten — of animals with which I thought I would form a special bond. This is due in part to the fact that the last few places I lived, squirrels weren’t a part of the surrounding fauna. Here in the big city, they’re basically the entirety of local wildlife, and I can’t tell you how much joy they’ve brought me in this depressing year.
I also posted this image because the text is true. In fact, it’s underselling the extent to which I have blessings to count. This year has been hard for all of us, but my blessings are large and abundant. Not even remotely small.
I recently learned a rather poetic way of describing morning people vs. night people – are you an owl, or are you a lark?
While I’m not quite a night owl these days, I always wished I was a morning lark. I do enjoy mornings – once I’m already up. I struggle to get myself out of bed, and for no good reason. I get plenty of sleep, have very little to burden me in terms of responsibilities (i.e., no kids or dogs), and overall I am a healthy person. But when that alarm goes off, I just want to snooze some more. Five more minutes please!
It’s cliché but true – the ocean does wonders for both the body and soul.
When I lived in California, Okinawa, and North Carolina, I knew I took it for granted that I lived by the sea. I knew I would miss it when it was gone. I always appreciated it, and realized how special it was, but by the time I hit the one-year mark of living in DC, I was craving salty air and sandy toes something fierce.
Of course, the global pandemic has made every potential getaway more complicated and guilt-ridden than before. But when Chuck’s parents said they wanted us to join them for a few days in Kill Devil Hills, NC – and promised they felt comfortable exposing themselves to our cooties to such a degree – of course I jumped at the chance to escape.
One of my favorite quotes of all time is by my man, Ralph Waldo Emerson: “Earth laughs in flowers.” You can find it all over my social media profiles, and I even considered getting it tattooed somewhere on my body, I love it that much.
I’m sure no one is surprised, given my incessant floral photography and love for both Earth and laughter. I don’t even know how I found it, originally – probably on Pinterest, or something extra #basic like that. Although I knew it was an Emerson gem, I had only ever seen it standing alone — never within the context of a larger piece of writing. Until now!
Hey y’all. It’s been a minute. No, it’s been a YEAR. Except, wait. It’s only been just-over-half-a-year. Feels like decades, you know what I’m saying? But now I’m just being dramatic.
I don’t need to re-cap the debacle that has been 2020, but I do want to pop in to say that it’s time for a personal re-brand. If you’ve followed me a while, you know I went from Pink Piglette, to Bad Kitty, to Keep Calm & Have a Cupcake, to the Gypsy Kitty Diaries. Each rendition of me was right for the time and place in which I found myself. But this year, given my ongoing and imperfect attempts at self-improvement, I’ve decided to move on from Gyspy Kitty and tell my story through a new lens (or filter, if we truly want to keep this 2020.)
I hope that everyone reading this is actively engaging in social distancing, for the greater good. Your excuses of youth and vibrancy mean nothing to the elderly, the healthcare workers, the immuno-compromised, the asthmatic. Stay home, if you can.
I know, this is all so very, very strange. And I honestly hope that social distancing and quarantine will ultimately prove “alarmist.” But, I’d rather that be the case, than the alternative of under-reacting and increasing the number of illnesses and death.
The hardest part, in some ways, is that it’s springtime in DC! There are so many things I had planned, and now everything has been cancelled or closed. What that means is more time at home, and more time to write, share, reflect. Soon, I’ll share a much belated recap of my trip to Italy! And Utah! I’ll also likely share some thoughts on the virus and its various implications, because I certainly do have thoughts on the matter.
In the meantime, stay safe, wash your hands, watch out for the more vulnerable, don’t go crazy at the supermarkets, and take your vitamins! Last but not least, enjoy these pretty photos of springtime in DC. Parks and gardens may be closed, but I am blessed to have magnolias, daffodils, and other blossoms in abundance in this sweet little Capitol Hill neighborhood 🙂
It’s pretty hilarious to look back on early evidenceof my journeytowards a plant-based lifestyle. There is plentiful hemming and hawing as I gradually convince myself to exploit animals less, making various justifications and exceptions along the way. Recently, I even stumbled upon my handwritten journals from high school, in which I lament the way vegetarians made me feel guilty for eating meat (early cognitive dissonance FTW!)
Even now, I am not 100% plant-based. I eat exclusively vegan at home, but make allowances when I’m at a restaurant, traveling, or a guest in someone’s home. In those instances, I typically compromise to vegetarian or pescatarian levels. In other words, I’m still working on it.
But, I am far more “radicalized” today than ever, and I speak up passionately for the cause. That said, I am perpetually conflicted about it. Not about veganism itself, but about my advocacy. There are days when I feel horribly guilty about “telling people what to eat” or about pressing my viewpoint on others. I remind myself that it’s less and less a matter of opinion. The more we learn about animal sentience, environmental degradation, health, global hunger, and climate change, the less we can dismiss veganism as a lifestyle choice or dietary preference. Now more than ever, it’s an existential and moral imperative. Continue reading →
Well folks, we have come full circle! After eight years, four states, and one foreign country, Chuck and I found our way back to the District. It would be fairly exhausting to recap everything that’s happened since then, so I won’t try. All anyone really needs to know is that Chuck’s promotion schedule had us saying adios to the Pink House a full year earlier than expected. I wasn’t particularly happy about that, but I was comforted by the idea that we were headed back to Washington. It was time!
Holy mackerel, how time flies. Happy New Year to all! Lots has happened since I last wrote (as always.) The biggest piece of news it that Chuck and I are leaving California this summer. While I knew that was a possibility, especially given his pending promotion, I still found it difficult to digest that we would cut our SoCal tour short by a full year. Although I’ve struggled to find myself professionally in the way that I’d hoped, I seriously love everything about my life here. My house, my yard, my friends. My grocery store, my vet, my hair salon, my favorite restaurant and favorite bar. Even on the job front, I had learned and networked enough to shake up my approach and find success a different way.
But there’s not much you can do to tame the Marine Corps’s inevitable winds of change. So, we are off to Virginia in June, and I am finding reasons to get excited.
But for now, I want to embrace what little time I have left in my rose-gold, California Girl life. Here are some of the highlights since I last updated in… wait for it… SEPTEMBER 2018! Continue reading →