a day of little pleasures

One of the things I genuinely appreciate about my director is his interest in making sure we (his staff) are taking care of ourselves in the world of life-work balance.  He understands that there are periods of time in our work that require long hours and intense schedules - but he also complements that with small but impactful gestures like providing a comp day for each of us (a day off that doesn't require the use of vacation or sick time) after the hectic and stressful time of staff training and the semester's beginning.

So today?  Was my comp day.  I had considered making a big day of it - going up to Lexington, doing lots of stuff - but then I realized that what I needed most was a day to do little stuff - stuff that I really wanted to get done - at a pace that felt relaxing.

So after a quiet morning of breakfast and picking up around the house a little, I sat down to make a wedding card for a friend that just got married.

I'm still feeling a little ambivalent about the design - one moment, I really like its quirky layout, and the next, I worry it's too quirky - but it felt good to make a card for her and her husband, tuck a gift card inside, and seal it up with love.

Then it was lunchtime.  Yesterday, I'd bought some bread at the farmers market - a loaf of wheat bread with sage - and for me, that seemed like the perfect foundation for a tuna sandwich.  Yum!  I absolutely love cutting homemade bread into thicker slices that crisp up on the outside in the toaster, while the inside of each slice is still chewy.  The layers it creates in a sandwich seem like perfection.  And yet even that isn't enough to entice me to make my own bread.  Hmm.

Then I spent the first half of the afternoon scrapbooking.  Ahhhh.  I made some more progress in my Smash book, and continued to successfully challenge my "need to create well-organized, well-composed layouts"-oriented brain.

I also made the brave (?) move of cutting pages out of my Smash book.  I realized the last time I worked on it that I'd have a lot of extra pages...and I came to a point in the album in which there were four or five pages of the same pattern...which seemed silly when there were other patterned pages after that series that would be more fun and more interesting.  So out they came!

Then, as I was preparing to go to the post office, I remembered that I still needed to mail Dad's birthday mural to him.  So I wrapped the rolled-up mural in fun polka-dot wrapping paper, and sealed it up in a box.  Can't wait to hear what he thinks of his poster!

It was kind of funny - I really genuinely wavered between borrowing Wildcat Guy's truck to run errands, and just walking.  Because all of the places I needed to go were in one specific section of town that actually is in close walking distance; and it wouldn't have been a hardship to make a walking trip out of it.  (Besides, don't I always say how nice it would be to live somewhere that I could do even less driving than I do now?!) But it was so hot outside that my lazy, less ambitious side won out and it was off I went in Wildcat Guy's huge truck.

And since I was driving, I couldn't resist the temptation to stop for a yummy treat.  I even brought one home for Wildcat Guy to keep in the freezer until he woke up.  I'd been craving ice cream for a few days, so this was the perfect way to indulge the craving.

After that, I did a few more small things - like hang the new frame I found at the craft store last weekend.  My goal is to start a gallery of pictures on this one particular wall, and this frame's shape seemed delightfully suited for that.

And then?  Then it was off to yoga class.  Over the summer, I'd been happy to take some classes on campus, especially since I ended up liking the instructor's methods and approach.  But I was still very excited to be taking classes with the local studio again!  It felt oh so good to be back in the studio with a wise, talented instructor.

For dinner, I tried a couple of new things.  There was the summer squash braid that I found at yesterday's farmers market - with summer squash and a tangy sweet caramelized onion marmalade wrapped into puff pastry - served as a side...

...and bowls of shrimp zucchini pesto for the main course.  In my ongoing endeavor to use up the sauces and mixes I have in my fridge and cupboard, I found a good use for both the envelope of pesto mix that I've had for much too long and the bag of "imperfect" zucchini that I'd bought on Sunday at the grocery store.  Mmmm...I was very happy with the end result.

Wildcat Guy and I spent the rest of the night hanging out, relaxing, getting small things done...all in all, my comp day was just what I needed.  Such a lovely blend of checking off tasks on my to-do list and enjoying the day at a pace of my own.  Ahhhh.

Where I am: home
What I'm reading: Bel Canto by Ann Patchett


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