Three things that are constants in my life on an almost daily basis are: exercise, vegetables, and writing. An odd amalgamation of things, but all critical for a bit of balance and inspiration in my life. You might wonder how these three have anything remotely in common. Their only commonality is that they ground me. On the days when I have the opportunity to run, eat a good amount of vegetables, and take the time to write, life just feels better. It may not mean that I have had an amazing day. Lots of shit could have happened, but these three stable aspects of my life help me to get through the shitty days and make the good days even better. Call me crazy, but it is true.
The ironic thing is that all three require discipline and none of them happened for me overnight. Consistent exercise was a gradual habit that happened over many years. My craving to run each day is the euphoria of pushing myself to the limits, having an hour that is just for myself, and the feeling at the end of a run when I am dripping in sweat and knowing I got through it. There is nothing else in my life that gives me that feeling and my day does not feel complete without my run.
How I feel when I run matters and, often, I can tell that if I feel horrible while running it has to do with some crap I ate earlier in the day. I am usually an evening/after work runner, so what I had for lunch and any snacks or junk food I ingest during the day matters. Which is why I have become a fanatic of eating vegetables. I have them in my green smoothie in the morning (usually spinach, kale, carrots), a salad for lunch, then for dinner, a vegetable, protein, and brown rice. Some sort of yummy concoction, but there is always a vegetable go with it. How far I have come from trying to get away with no vegetables as a kid and little to none in high school and college. Why have I become such an addict? I can now tell the difference in my body when I do not have these natural nutrients. More sugar + less vegetables and my body shuts down earlier in the day. More sugar = more exhausted. Since I know this about myself I do all I can to eat my veggies.
Writing. The final aspect to balance in my life. I write five blog posts each week and used to write in a journal too. My journal writing has waned in the past few months. It felt like work and I was not inspired to do it so I stopped. I know I will pick it up again, as that has been the ebb and flow of my life. There have been times when I needed to write, and write, and write to figure out my thoughts and unravel my world. Writing random olio keeps my mind open and aware. When you know that you are going to write a blog five days in a row you look at the world differently. It makes me more creative, have more wonder, and investigate the world.
What is not to love about my three life disciplines? A random olio of balance that is the core of who I am today.
“I don’t know.” My nephew used to always say this. I would ask him a question and his response would be: “I don’t know.” On Monday, Labor Day, a part of our three-day weekend I asked Chris what he wanted to do. His response: “I don’t know. Just stay in bed. Have breakfast.” That’s all I got from him. So, what did we end up doing? A plethora of randomness. Yes, just like this blog: random olio. That is what we did on our Labor Day. We still stayed in bed. Of course we had breakfast too. But, without any clarity over any other ideas, we ended up doing…
A random hodgepodge of things:
posted a bunch of items on ebay
purged old paperwork and files
posted a bookshelf on Craigslist
caught up on emails… lots of emails
caught up on a stack of articles that I have wanted to read
ran 8 miles
our breakfast was yummy
got back on track with catching up on “Breaking Bad” (can you believe we are still on season 1?)
I think that Chris will think differently when I ask him what he wants to do, and no longer say: “I don’t know.” Smirk. Smirk. Now he just might have an answer for me. I would like to x, y, and z. I would not like to do anything having to do with Craigslist or ebay, or emails, or the Internet. I would like to not have to do anything productive. I would like to watch movies all day, or be outside and explore. Or, he could say: “I would like to do whatever you would like to do.” Ha. Often that is what happens, and we then end up in some project that somehow is a puking of a closet, or in the garage, that always takes longer than you think.
Last year I forgot all about random olio’s 1st birthday, and yet here we are on random olio’s 2nd birthday. Life flew by before I could catch my breath and celebrate. This year I have been giving my blog a little love, and I have to say it has not been the terrible twos for me. I am still enjoying the challenge of writing and sharing each weekday. It keeps me on my toes.
If you have been reading random olio for the past two years, I applaud you for staying with me. I hope you have found comfort, laughter, and inspiration in each post. I am sure there might have been some that bored you, others that made you laugh or cry, and yet other posts that you thought wow, TMI. Just as I shared in “Unapologetically herself” my coworker brilliantly said my nickname should be TMI. They were right. I hope my words without filters inspire you to be bold, share what you think, and not worry about what other people think.
I write what inspires me, what comes pouring out of my fingers sometimes so fast I have no idea where I am going. Some posts could definitely be more polished than others, but that is all part of the process. What I find interesting is that on the days when I post a blog and head off to work thinking “no one is going to be interested in this topic” is usually a topic that spurs many comments, likes, and shares. We never truly know what is going to interest another person, tug at their heart-strings, and make them want to share with another.
I have learned so much these past two years: strategizing what I want to write about, connecting with others online, friends, family, and maybe not as important to you, but so important to me, I have learned so much about myself and others in the process of writing random olio. Guess what? I am not going anywhere. Hopefully I will keep inspiring you, making you laugh, and cry. Hey, pee your pants if you want to… I am not watching.
Thank you to each of you that have read one post, a few posts, or the 500+ posts that have happened over the last two years. Without your kind words, comments, and support, I would be writing online with no community.
It was about two years ago that I was sitting on a beach in Maui talking to a family member about how I wanted to start a blog. When they asked me: “Well what would you write about each day?” I said: “I think it will be random every day. There are a variety of topics I can see writing about based on my many interests.” I had no idea I would still be writing this blog 500 posts later. Yes, today is my 500th blog post. It is just a few weeks shy of a 2 year anniversary for random olio.
There are days that I cannot imagine how I will have the time or inspiration to write another blog post, and there are other days that I have so many ideas that I often cannot decide what I want to write about for that day. Just to shed light on how often the ideas flow, I currently have 108 “blog drafts.” For those of you reading this that might not be WordPress bloggers, that would be like having 108 draft messages in your email client. Every once in a while I will go to the oldest drafts and see if I can resurrect the inspiration from my original idea.
random olio has been visited from 141 different countries, a shocking statistic for me. The top three are: United States, United Kingdom, and Canada, which makes sense. While I do not know how long I will continue to write blog posts, as long as random ideas continue to pour out of my fingertips, I will continue to share random olios! With appreciation to all who stop by and read a few, and especially to those of you who may have actually read all 500 blog posts. You probably know way too much about me, and potentially think I am insane.
400 posts. I can hardly believe it. When I started this blog back in January 2012 I had no idea I would last this long. Looking back I cannot believe that I have randomly blabbed on about 400 different topics. Okay so maybe some of them are similar. My family, childhood, money, my favorite husband, funny videos, women’s issues, the occasional political post. That is why I still love the name of this blog. My posts are random. I write about whatever inspires, infuriates, makes me laugh. The randomest of things come out of my finger tips.
I often only have a glimmer of an idea when I sit down with my laptop and let my thoughts flow. There are times when a blog idea formulates in my thought and I sit down and start typing, never knowing how it will finish, or how long it will take. Sometimes it all comes out fast and furious in a matter of minutes and other blogs never feel exactly right. Sometimes I will write a post and it remains in draft form for weeks or months and some I eventually delete because they never feel right or salvageable.
I hope that in the process of my diatribes and babbles I have inspired, made you think, and made you laugh. There are days when I wonder why I still blog, when I wonder if it matters that I write any more. It is usually on those days when I doubt myself, my writing, and my random topics that I get an email or a comment from someone who says my blog that very day touched their heart, or was just the idea they needed that day. So you, my friends, are the reason I continue to blog. I do not write for anyone specific. I write because it comes out of me so passionately. I write because I do not know how I could keep it all in. This blog is therapy for me. It is a connection to so many individuals I have corresponded with and inspiration for what other ideas will continue to pour out of my fingertips and onto this MacBook Air.
Thank you to everyone who has read and continues to read this blog. You are appreciated and are an inspiration to me. I only hope I continue to inspire through random olio.