Friday, October 18, 2013

Some Birthday Time for Me

Yesterday I took a day off from work and celebrated my 42nd birthday. There was a possibility that Lynda could take the day off with me, but she couldn't justify the time off. So, I spent much of the day by myself. Here's what I did.

Morning--After helping get the kids off for school, I came home and updated a story on btw that I had pre-prepared on the debt ceiling deadline. Given that cooler heads prevailed (for once), I had a bit of adjusting to do to the story that was already written. But that didn't take very long, so once that was finished, I got to begin my relaxing.

Oh, but first I had to get my drivers license renewed. It was a good thing that I planned to use my free birthday Starbucks coupon, since the BMV was right next door to the neighborhood Starbucks. And the line was non-existent that early in the day, so in short order, I was legal again. (It happened so fast, I didn't even get time to read my book.)

Upon returning home again, I took a little time to read The Devil in the White City. I started (re)reading this during my trip to North Carolina earlier in the month and was getting close to the end. I was reading and waiting for the weather to clear up a bit, as I wanted to get outside some. Once I was convinced that I wouldn't get rained on, I got out of the house.

Midday--I drove over to Blendon Woods Metro Park and did a bit of hiking in the woods.
The trees were displaying the prettiest fall colors I've seen around here this season. Lots of gold leaves broken up by all of the dark trunks of the trees. The forest was very quiet overall, with lots of birds and only occasional other people walking along the paths.

I chose to take the path to Ripple Rock Trail. At the halfway point there is a pretty little creek that I wanted to sit beside and continue my reading. Unfortunately, when I got down to the water, there wasn't a bench to sit upon. And there wasn't much water running through the creek anyway, so I didn't get the sound I was aiming for. I kept on walking and found another nearby bench where I could sit and read for about another hour.

After a while reading, I headed back to the car. It started to rain a little bit during my hike back, but the canopy of leaves kept me almost entirely dry. I got some lunch and then headed home again. I called mom and dad and caught up with them, hearing about their recent travels and enjoying some time thinking about home. Then I read a bit more and soon it was time to get the kids from school.

Evening--I got the kids some dinner and waited for Lynda to come home. We went out last night and had some seafood at Bonefish Grill. And then we checked out Star Lanes, the newish bowling alley/game place/restaurant.

Even though I bowled terribly, we still had a good time. All in all, it was a nice day spent mostly by myself, but filled with quiet time and lots of relaxation. It was just the sort of thing that I really needed to do.

All throughout the day, I got lots of birthday wishes from family and friends, so that was always a welcome event. It was a good start to a new year. I hope I can hold onto that sense of relaxation and peace as I make my way through the challenges sure to come in the next year ahead. But as long as I can keep mindful of the many, many blessings I have, everything else should take care of itself.

Here's to 41 good years in the past and many more to come ahead.