Settling Into Autumn

Hello, dear readers, and welcome to another Thursday! Apologies for the later-than-usual post today; the morning got away from me a bit.

It’s been a quiet week, for the most part. The fall weather has really arrived in St. Paul, which makes me happy (as someone who’s pretty warm-blooded but loves wearing sweaters and other knitwear, I live for fall/winter weather). I’m definitely feeling the pull to prepare for winter hibernation.

Sunday into Monday I had a headache that I just couldn’t shake. I ended up calling off from work on Monday after I figured out it was partially a photosensitivity thing and I decided staring at computer screens for 8 hours was probably not going to help. I ended up reading the entirety of The House in the Cerulean Sea while I was trying to distract myself from the headache – I’d picked up the book when we were in Duluth and I really enjoyed it! I’ve not been reading much this year and it felt really good to devour a book in one day.

Yesterday, I had an in-person doctor visit with a new-to-me doctor, and it was…shockingly affirming? Like, I left feeling like a human being and not a freak the doctor didn’t quite know how to handle. It was really refreshing to not need to educate my doctor on “Trans 101” or “BMI is Not an Indicator of Health” and honestly I’m not sure what I’m feeling more strongly – gratitude that this was my experience or anger that this isn’t the norm.

I have other news in the works, but I think I’m going to save that for a later post when it’s more official. In the meantime, I hope you’re all hanging in there, and I’ll leave you, as usual, with a Nova photo:

Portrait mode is magical.

Allergies for Everyone

Good morning, dear readers – we made it to another Thursday.

As you can probably tell from the title of this post, some of us have sneezed and sniffled our way here. Ragweed season is really bad in the Twin Cities right now, and I am struggling…and so is Nova. We’ve been giving her Benadryl all week to help with it, and it is helping, but it’s pretty heartbreaking when she gets really itchy and is clearly uncomfortable. I’ve just had a perpetual sinus headache and continue to want to sleep all the time. I’ve made it to my desk on time for work every day this week, though, so that has to count for something.

I’m not in the best mood today, mostly because of how sniffly and gross my head feels. To counter that, here are three things I’m grateful for this week:

  • My friends. I’ve had several reminders lately that I really do know the best people who really care about and take care of each other, and I’ve really been overwhelmed with gratitude that I have such incredible people in my life.
  • D&D (and other games). I got to play D&D on Tuesday night, and even though it kept me up well past my bedtime, it was so worth it. I’m also working on starting a game of Wanderhome with some other friends, and I’m so excited to try this system out. The importance of play and of story in my life is huge, and I’m reminded every time I get to dive into a fantasy world with some friends how much of a difference it’s made to have those things.
  • Fall weather. The heat seems to have finally abated, and now it’s been in the 60s the past few days. It’s supposed to get back up in to the 70s today, but I think the 80s are behind us, and that is just fine with me. I’m looking forward to wearing sweaters soon!

I will leave you with this ridiculous picture of Nova, who was definitely not at all interested in what my husband was eating when they took this photo:

Hello, I see you have pizza. I also would like to have pizza.


I don’t know what it is about this week, but I am feeling a little all over the place. I’m having a hard time focusing on anything for very long.

I don’t have a whole lot to write about this week, but I don’t want to skip blogging altogether. Let’s fall back on a good old list post, shall we? Here are a few things I’m grateful for and/or looking forward to right now:

  • I’m grateful for increased access to telehealth. I had some labs come back elevated this week, but rather than having to go back into the office in person and lose half my day in transit, I can talk to my doctor via Zoom on my lunch break.
  • I’m happy about the arrival of fall – I love the crispness in the air and the changing leaves. Looking out the window brings me a lot of joy these days.
  • I’m looking forward to the weekend – I have a handful of recurring (virtual) social things on the weekends and they do a lot to keep me grounded.

Short post this week, but that’s all I have the mental space for at the moment. Take care of yourselves and each other, wear your damn masks, and VOTE if you’re in the US!

Fall Feelings

I think, just maybe, fall has really fallen for real in Chicago. We had one 90-degree day last week, but I think that was really the last one. I hope it was. I’m enjoying the chance to wear the things I’ve knit without also needing to bundle up so much I can hardly move.

I’m wrestling with seasonal allergies that might also be a cold, but aside from being annoyed by how sniffly I am, it’s not detracting from my enjoyment of the weather. It’s been chilly and sunny most of the week, which is my favorite combination.

I’m currently on track to make it through my first full five-day work week in over a month (thanks to all the Jewish holidays in September and staying home one day last week). It hasn’t been the easiest adjustment. My officemate is out of town, though, so I have the office to myself, which I think is helping. Not that my officemate isn’t lovely, but she is an extrovert and I am not. I’ve managed to get a handful of smaller projects done and a couple of bigger projects started. So that’s something.

I get restless in the fall, I think. I want to try new things before going into hibernation for the winter. I’m holding space for some big feelings about where I am and where I want to be and where those things aren’t lining up.

What about you, dear reader? Is the arrival of fall bringing up big feelings for you like it is for me? I’d love to hear all about it!

Days Off and Happy Thoughts

This might be my favorite time of year. Not only do I love fall in general (apple cider! sweater weather! pretty trees!), but it’s also when a lot of major Jewish holidays happen, which, since I work for a Jewish agency, means I get a bunch of extra days off. This week, we had Monday and Tuesday off for Rosh Hashanah. I thoroughly enjoyed my days off. Here is a list of some other happy things from the past week:

  • Friends. On Saturday, my partner and I got breakfast with a friend in the neighborhood, which is something of a weekend tradition and time I really treasure. That afternoon, we went to a lovely, low-key baby shower for a couple of friends, and it was so fun to celebrate them and their little-one-to-be.
  • Self-care. I also got a much-needed haircut on Saturday, and bought myself a new book that I’m enjoying quite a bit (The Fifth Season by N.K. Jemisin). It always surprises me how much a good haircut can improve how I feel in my body.
  • Music. Sometime in the spring I started attending services at a Unitarian Universalist church semi-regularly, and now I’ve joined their choir (jury is still out on whether I’m going to actually become a member of the church). Sunday was the first service I joined them for. I haven’t been in a choir since high school, and since I also haven’t played much piano since then, my sight-reading skills have slipped somewhat. But I’m managing okay at keeping up with the rest of our tiny tenor section, and I’m having fun with it.
  • Knitting. I got SO MUCH KNITTING done on my days off. I am almost done with the second sleeve of the sweater I started last September. Once I finish that, it’s just the front left. I am so excited to be able to wear this sweater, and it felt good to really dig into my knitting again – I think I knit more in the past week than I’ve knit in the past five months combined.
  • Self-indulgent shopping. I bought myself some new work pants in fun colors, because I really didn’t love what I had. I also had a minor manic moment last week and ordered a pair of Fluevog boots. They arrived yesterday, and I am completely smitten. They’re exactly what I wanted. It feels a little silly to be this excited about shoes, but they’re pretty awesome shoes:

    New boots!


Happy Thoughts for a Foggy Morning

I nearly forgot to write something for the blog this week – I’ve been feeling a bit under the weather, which has scrambled my brain enough that I’m a little more scattered than usual. But here I am, on the bus, riding through the fog, so let’s talk about a few happy things from the past week. 

  1. I started taking a guitar fingerpicking class last week. It’s kicking my ass already, but in a way that’s motivating me to practice more. I’m excited to add some new skills to my rather slapdash guitar-playing repertoire. 
  2. It’s starting to feel like fall. Granted, the next few days are supposed to get hot again, but generally the weather has been getting cooler. We’ve had several lovely days that have allowed me to pull some hand knit sweaters out. The only downside of fall is that my allergies tend to flare up again, so I’ve spent most of the week not sure if I’m getting sick or am just allergic to all of the outdoors. Still, it’s pretty, and I like not feeling disgusting every time I go outside. 
  3. My tattoo is healing nicely. I am still super happy with how it turned out. It makes me smile every time I look at my arm.