As the ‘unofficial’ end to summer has rolled around, I thought I would do a ‘backwards’ bucket list since I never got around to posting my summer bucket list in the first place, and also because reviewing the summer that was makes me smile.  Though it wasn’t the summer I thought it was in some ways, it made up for it in others, and it’s the first summer I’ve felt that I have truly, 100% enjoyed the living shit out of summer. Yep, that’s right, enjoyed the living shit out of it….how do you like them apples?! (puppies and rainbows…puppies and rainbows!)

So, some of the moments I’ll remember most of sun-drenched days and starlit nights?

  • Bloggers in Sin City! Though this was in May, it still “counts” and was an amazing experience. I’ve met so many bloggers, I met some of my favorites (Shannon, Akirah, Erika and BB) with one of my favorites (TiWID)
  • Meeting INRIS and C!
  • The Cathe Road Trip, sweating like whoa, and meeting Heather!
  • Maine, Maine, Maine, Maine, Maine, and oh, Maine!
  • Rockclimbing! <–bucket list item!
  • Some fanfrickintastic times at the beach, most recently in particular (today was another amazing beach day with another kick friend, Jacqui. Gorgeous weather!)
  • Running, running and more running – 3 weeks til the Wicked Half. Rocked another 10 miles today and it feels so much more real now <–bucket list item!
  • Lots of cookouts, beach time, lake time and enjoying a lot of moments with friends, sisters, family and kitties.
  • Listening to the waves lap at the shore, bonfire on the lake, watching the sparking water glisten on an early morning run, and lots and lots of laughs, wine, and food. What more could a girl ask for?

Some other moments I will never forget?

  • When Nala fell ill, turned a corner, and when she finally was off her medication – she’s now over 8.5 lbs. I feel blessed.
  • A tragedy in my hometown that once again reminds me how much I love my sisters…we spent some special moments together this summer, in part, because of that, I think.
  • Feeling my soon-to-be-niece kick, and looking so forward to loving her and continuing auntie throwdown like whoa!

What’s missing from this list? Dating, for the most part. I didn’t date much this summer, though I hoped to, and I also hoped to find love and/or at least find someone worth dating or entering a relationship with, but I’ve realized you can’t rush it, it’ll come when it’s meant to, and I can hope like hell it will happen, but I know I just need to keep faith that it will, and in the process, have a little fun.

So…fall, whatdya got for me?! Beyond my niece being born, which is rightaroundthecorner, moving (next weekend) and my trip to wine country at the end of the month, the sky’s the limit and I can’t wait to enjoy the shit out of fall and winter too. Bring it!

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I have a lot to look forward to and be thankful for, all things considered.

As I sit here, ready for my Skype “date” with IntrigueMe (and MAYBE INRIS, but I cannot confirm nor deny if he will, in fact, join our conversation!), I’m just thinking about the next few weeks/months and am recalling where I was, recalling my next few months, just about this time last summer, in the midst of the divorce/house selling details, and wow, I feel so different now than I did then, yet still “me” – if that makes any sense at all.

So, here goes – check it out:

  • This weekend: vacation begins!!! Heading to Maine on Friday – Thursday of next week, half of which will be spent with Amy and Eric, and my sister Jess and Scott. It’s promising to be a mind-searingly memorable weekend and it couldnt’t have come at a better time. I can’t wait.
  • Weekend of July 31: Cathe Road Trip in New Jersey! My workout weekend commences…with some of those that went last year with me and Jess, and some new faces that I can’t WAIT to meet, including Heather from Where’s the Beach. It’s going to be awesome…7 workouts, 2 1/2 days…here. I. come.
  • Week of August 23: ANOTHER week in Maine – will be awesome to have three weeks this summer where I’ve spent a good chunk of time off in Maine. Awesome.
  • September 11: My divorce-sary! Wow. Yes. There will be some sort of party…just to celebrate ME. Count on it. And, that is the same weekend that I move to my new unit…so a good time for a re-housewarming, no?
  • September 30 – Oct 9: WINE COUNTRY!! My mecca. AND the week of my 31st (gulp. blink. 31. Really?) birthday. Wheee!

I’m excited. I’m trying to drink it all in, enjoy each and every day (work days included…) and be so thankful that my hard work, agony over money (or lack thereof…) is going to – in some cases – some very excellent times in my life that I will never forget. And I can’t wait to share them all with you.

Do you have anything exciting or “you” related planned? Whatever you are doing, or have done, this summer…drink it in. There’s something about summer that’s enchanting and magical. And I love it.

First, I must say, if this long weekend were a man, I think I might just marry him…or maybe just date him, not sure I’m quite ready for that level of commitment ;-P It’s absolutely gorgeous, I’ve spent the last two days enjoying time with friends, the beach, and some wine (of course) and there’s still one more day left in the weekend, what’s not to like, right?

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Yet, when I woke up this morning, I felt a rush of lonliness mixed with a little sadness.

Why?

Well, a mix of things, I think, one of which is totally PMS-driven (ah, those hormones love to swing my moods to and fro!)

The other thing? I miss my house and my pool/yard more than ever. Let me rephrase that…I miss having A house and pool and yard, not necessarily my past house, given it was ridden with memories and the past, something I am still glad to have walked away from. It put me into a bit of a funk, but I worked out, let my mind drift, and felt a little bit better afterwards, but it’s still nagging in the back of my mind. What do I really miss? I don’t necessarily miss what I had, but I do miss the stability, groundedness, happiness, and couple-ness of having a marriage. Maybe I didn’t appreciate what I had (when it was good) as much as I should have, or maybe I’m just looking at it now too idealistically, but what it does point to is this…

I miss being in a relationship.

Plain and simple.

I know that’s not a huge revelation for anyone, because to you, it may seen I’ve been itching for that since I started dating almost a year ago (damn, time flies…). But truly, I haven’t missed that all too much, I’ve enjoyed being on my own, enjoyed dating, even through the ups and downs, but a big part of me now just misses being in a relationship, being in love, and the stability and happiness that comes with it.

And maybe part of missing being in a relationship is the start of summer (unofficially) this weekend. While I think there are many, many fun reasons to be single in the summer, I also think being in a relationship in the summer is a lot of fun too.

Maybe it’s the third-wheel factor in the summer…it just feels more pronounced for me. Friday night, for example, I was having drinks with some of my Group Kick friends, and I looked around and realized I was the only single in the group, and not only the only single, but the only unmarried too. Double whammy, a little bit. (And, I was secretly hoping ‘pretty boy’ would be there, a playful name referring to a friend of ours that has hung out at this particular bar recently. We went to college together, and our internships, and well, I kinda think he’s cute. Was sort of hoping for a run-in, but no dice).

I go back and forth with this is-summer-better-single-or-not thing in my head quite a bit, at least lately, and I don’t really think there’s an answer to it, because, like I said, there’s plenty of “pros” for both, I just think for me, it points to wanting what I don’t have right now.

And when I was explaining this (in part) to my sister, she said “I just want you to be happy.” And I responded, “but I AM happy.” Because I am, truly. Life is great, I’m in a good spot emotionally and mentally. It’s summer. I have lots of fun things planned in coming weeks and months. It’s just that tiny nagging at me, the alone-factor, that nags ever so slightly more now and again, and right now, it’s nagging.

I know my time will come. I know you all will reiterate that. Or say that I should stop looking. Or stop wanting. Or just to enjoy what I have now. And I am – sorta kinda, all of these things.

I’m not really looking. Sure, I’m on chemistry and OKC, but I’m not really actively looking through them too seriously. Yet, I may have a date coming up…more on that later (It’s the not looking, I swear). I may have a couple of potential “organic” dates brewing. Maybe. That’d be a first, and I’d welcome it. Again, more on that later (c’mon, this post is getting ridiculously long!).

So for now, writing this all out…I guess I’m still okay being on my own. It’s just the time of year where it’d be nice to at least have someone around, at the beach, or at cookouts, or whatever it may be, to have by my side. It’ll come. I know it will, and for now, I’ll enjoy the social butterfly-ness that I’m trying to cultivate as much as possible.

Well, as the unofficial end of summer is here, on a beautiful Labor Day Monday afternoon, I thought it would only be fitting to reflect on what a wonderful summer it has been in so many ways. So this is my top 10 list (in no particular order) of my favorite moments and activities of the summer…and a few upcoming fall moments I’m sure will be unforgettable:

  1. Two fantastic weeks in Maine (here and here)
  2. Boys, boys boys…diving into the dating game a la match.com (many posts can be found under the “dating” category and finding my inner “flirt” a la CSB aka holy grail of hotness!)
  3. Cathe Road Trip 2009 (what a sweat- and fun-filled weekend with some great friends!)
  4. Many, many GNIs and GNOs (girls night ins and outs) with my circle of friends that have been my mainstays throughout this ordeal (you know who you are, and I am grateful to God for each of you!)
  5. Remembering Nonna, in part by spending extra time with my grandparents in Maine, and celebrating their 60 years of marriage.
  6. Running three 5Ks this summer (and a few more on tap for fall!)
  7. Getting through the divorce paperwork and short sale process all while staying sane. On the almost-eve of divorce finality (Friday) and the short sale/move (Oct 1), this summer has had it’s stressful moments, but I’m proud to have gotten through it!
  8. Finding my cadence with Pete…we’ve evolved quite a bit this summer into a pretty good friendship. Heck, I gave him dating advice, and he’s helping me move. That’s a pretty good place, I think!
  9. Thoroughly enjoying every  summer day as much as possible.  Thought we were ripped off with a crappy June, I don’t feel overly cheated this summer, because I have made a concerted effort to spend as much time as possible outside, by the pool, by the lake, on the patio, whereever I possibly can.  A little sun, a little fun, and a little wine never hurt anyone, if you ask me!
  10. Many, many, many summer cookouts…getting the most of out my pool and yard with family and friends. It’s been a good one!!

So, there you have it…I’ve probably oversimplified some of it, but put simply, it just HAS been a fantastic summer and thinking back to those unforgettable moments invigorates me, and I look forward to coming full circle this fall (as Halloween was when we unofficially broke up), being the happiest I ever have, in the best shape as I can be, and ticking off even more “firsts” – including a fantastic trip to wine country in October, seeing U2 later this month, and MOVING into my own place! Sounds like I already have some items lined up for my fall top 10, don’t I?!

It’s a quiet Saturday morning, and I am relishing it! The sun has risen (and so beautifully too), the birds are chirping and the air is mild. Summer is still here, and I am holding on to it for dear life 😉 There are so many things about this summer that have absolutely rocked, and I plan to list out a top 10 later this weekend (once I enjoy one last lazy long weekend in Maine, starting in about two hours!).

So, I’m off for a hot date…with CSB, I mean spinning (hehe), and then it’s upta camp I go! Enjoy the long weekend and wherever you are, I hope the sun shines, the laughter is abundant and the grill is a-fire! 🙂