Sunday, May 22, 2016

Resolutions Reflection 2016: Realigning in May

I'd meant to have quarterly "resolution reflections" this year, but it wasn't until last week that I sat down and took a closer look at my three 2016 resolutions, to make sure they were all still where I wanted to be heading—where I wanted my focus to be. (Here had been my latest checkpoint, by the way, at the end of April.)

Here's what I found out:

Regular volunteering: Not a priority

After having been in Montpellier for just over a month, and in my new home for over two weeks, I've quickly become involved in a variety of Meetup/Couchsurfing weekly events. I think one result of this new social life is that I don't have as strong a desire to find a regular local volunteer opportunity as I did when I was living in Rodez. In Rodez I felt like an outsider, and also had free time on my hands—so volunteering seemed like the perfect way to give back while getting to know Rodez and its citizens.
• • •

Wednesday, May 18, 2016

Thursday, May 12, 2016

Thankful Thursday 5/12/16

Thankful Thursday is a weekly segment that I began 1/10/13—read why here
I invite you to join me in practicing gratitude!

Again, there is much to be thankful for these days. (There's always much to be thankful for—but when you look for it and notice it, you only see more and more. It grows.)

I have a big, beautiful bed to sleep in.

Reliable internet.

A bathroom all to my own. (Sure, you have to sit completely sideways, as there's no leg room when the door is closed—but I don't care one bit!)

A fridge that keeps things cold. (Anyone else remember my "fridge" at my studio in Korea? No? Well, allow me to refresh your memory: It didn't keep things cold.)

Great public transportation (even if I have to wait a half hour for the next tram, as happened last night after the weekly Couchsurfing conversation event).

A city full of events and culture (like FISE, which was last weekend—check out this BMX highlight video).

Kind roommates.

"Invisible" support from family and friends all over.

Being able to take a piano break any time during the day. (There are two pianos in this house!)

Having a visa which allows me to be in France.

No painful health issues.

And on, and on.

Quoting Regina Spektor, "Love what you have and you'll have more love."

What's one thing you're thankful for today?
• • •

Thursday, May 5, 2016

Thankful Thursday 5/5/16: Sun, shelter, and service exchanges

Thankful Thursday is a weekly segment that I began 1/10/13—read why here
I invite you to join me in practicing gratitude!

So much to be thankful for today. First things first: I found a place to live, and I moved in today! (Details and house tour to come.) Damien helped me make the move quick and painless with the use of his car.

Before that though, in the morning I got myself involved in a services exchange: This weekend I'm going to help an AirBnb host who I met via a Couchsurfing conversation event (and who is also a French teacher!). He's out of town for the weekend but has two AirBnb guests coming on different days, so I'll go there to change sheets, let the guests in, hand over the keys, etc. In exchange I get an hour-long French class next week!

It was a gorgeous day, and I got to play ultimate on the beach with friendly Couchsurfing members, plus a quick dip the sea (because hello, I cannot take the Mediterranean for granted! Only one other was brave enough to go in but it really wasn't too cold—especially after having been running).

My new roommate/landlord invited Damien and I to a barbecue in the backyard when we got back from frisbee. I think this will be a really good place to live, and am thankful I got to live three weeks at Elodie's house (AirBnb—excellent) before I found this one.

And another news item, because why not share now: My sister just bought a plane ticket to come visit during the second half of June!
• • •

Sunday, May 1, 2016

Resolutions Checkpoint 2016: April

After getting "settled" in Montpellier the third week of April, apartment hunting has quickly consumed most of my time this past week. Since arriving I've either been (a) working, (b) at some sort of language exchange/internationals event in the evening, (c) doing something athletic (run/frisbee/swim), or (d) checking apartments online.

So aside from snail mailing, my solo hobbies took a rest these past two weeks (calligraphy, reading, writing, other "side business" projects). (However, the tradeoff was very worth it. I'd forgotten how good it feels to quickly fall asleep at night because you tired yourself out with exercise during the day, and to wake up sore all over.)

That said, here's what's happened in April on the resolutions front:

April Progress

• • •