traveler’s notebook & fountain pen

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I am a dedicated journl-er. Journal, not diary. No angst ridden entries here.  I track things like the weather (including sunrise & sunset times), Book of Common Prayer (BCP) daily readings and my personal prayer list, how I moved my body that day, what I ate that day, how much water I drank, which household tasks I did, which garden/yard tasks I did, and what I read, listened to, watched, and any thoughts that really stuck with me, and finally I end my day with a short 3 word gratitude list.

Each year I read back over my journals and pull out the information that I need or just want to keep.  Then I burn the notebooks. For me it is a way of letting go of the past, clearing space for the present, and not burdening the future with my lists.

I’ve used a variety of notebooks for this. Some nice, some cheap. Normally just cheap . . . like a composition notebook. Recently I switched to an old Midori Traveler’s Notebook that I bought 7 years ago and never really “took too”, bought some dot graph inserts, and a lovely bamboo refillable fountain pen that Hannah gave me. I like this set up because the notebook never changes, the leather is easy to care for and should outlast me. The inserts are relatively cheap, made by a fairly eco-friendly company, and store in an incredibly small pile. The pen is new, but I’ve used a Lamy Safari fountain pen for years and love it.

In the past, I have burned the journals on New Year’s Eve. I’m contemplating switching that to a different time. I’ve been reading a lot of Celtic things and it seems to me that the burning of my journals might be worked into the devotional world of the Celts. I still have lots of reading and thinking to do before I make a final decision.

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What I’m reading:  The Forest Church, Harry Potter 3 in German, Cherringham #11, Every Earthly Blessing

What I’m listening to: Arthur

What I’m watching:  Doctor Who, The Good Place

What I’m learning in Welsh:

  • Yn well
  • Yn waeth
  • Gwych
  • wedi blino
  • Pwy dych chi

What I’m thinking about:  How much wood will be need this winter? Measuring wood in ricks, cords, trees, and by pacing off the stack. Wondering why the dog always throws up on the duvet when it is so damp outside that it will take 2 days at least for it to dry (and that’s if I remember to bring it inside at night).

reusable straw

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I have a cup full of reusable straws at home. They range from plastic, to glass, to metal with silicone mouth pieces, to metal with a bend, but this is the straw I choose to keep in my tote.

It is made by Keep Cup and fits through the small opening on both my Keep Cup and my HydroFlask cafe lid. It is straight and that makes it much easier to clean on the go. I generally just run water through it and wrap it in my bandana/napkin. The opening isn’t huge, so I don’t usually use it with a smoothie.

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What I’m reading:  The Forest Church, Cherringham Cozy Mysteries No. 10-12, Harry Potter 3 in German, climate change articles and food production

What I’m listening to: Merlin (S Lawhead)

What I’m watching:  News, Doctor Who, The Good Place

What I’m thinking about:  learning Welsh, how to mitigate climate change and growing older in my own garden and in our woods. Lots and lots of thoughts.

3-1-1 and packing

These are 3D Organizer Cubes from Tom Bihn.

The top one is Iberian (red) and mesh. It is the perfect size to hold a T-shirt, underwear, bra, and pair of socks. These aren’t special travel clothes either, just my normal stuff. I’ve never packed with “cubes” before, but thought I’d see if a whole day would fit in one for those short overnight trips.

I normally use it for all those small things I pack that aren’t 3-1-1 or technology: comb, toothbrush, floss, prescriptions & supplements, deodorant crystal, flashlight, etc.

The bottom one is an Ultraviolet with plastic. It makes an amazing 3-1-1 kit and it has a small hook so it could be hung up on a towel rack. I have it on a 16” key strap so it’s easy to pull out of my bag.

Which reminds me, I need an Iberian key strap!

girls’ trip

My best-est friend, since second grade, and I got together for a two day trip this week. We always have such a lovely time together . . . talking, eating, and talking. We spent our time together at Spring Mill State Park in IN.

Weather: mid-upper 80s, partly cloudy, but dry

Activities: walking, talking, and eating

Packing List:

  • wearing: t-shirt, cardigan, shorts, unders/bra, trainers
  • in the bag: pjs, t-shirt, unders, yoga pants (for lounging), swim suit, sandals (for pool), sun hat
  • 3-1-1: shampoo/soap bar, face serum, deodorant stone, toothbrush, toothpaste, lip balm, eye drops
  • Iberian Cube: altoids, Rx & supplements, comb, phone charger, ear buds, mini first-aid kit,

 

 

co-pilot

Tom Bihn Co-Pilot in Aubergine 525 Ballistic and Northwest Sky 200 Halcyon.

Dimensions: 11.8” x 10” x 4.9”, 10 liters, 1 pound

My first reaction upon opening the box was, “Wow! That’s really tiny.” In no time at all I was pushing stuff into it just to see what would fit. And I was AMAZED!

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After the amazement wore off, I began to think more deliberately about what should go in this bag for a short trip. Here is the list of what fit and in the picture below they are laid out in the same general way they went into the bag.

  • Total weight packed:  8 pounds
  • Main back pocket: jeans (size 8), 3 t-shirts (size small), yoga pants & tank top (PJs), 3 pair of socks, 3 pair of underwear, 1 bra, barefoot sandals
  • front left pocket: 3-1-1 bag
  • front middle pocket: water bottle
  • front right pocket: Iberian cube with comb, soap, deodorant crystal, toothbrush, prescriptions & supplements, flashlight, floss, mini first-aid pouch,
  • back zip pocket (this is so cool, it unzips to create a sleeve that can go over a roller bag handle or it is a open top pocket): Aubergine Cubelet with technology stuff (charger, stand, earbuds) and my Kindle

In my purse, also Tom Bihn, are my glasses, wallet, phone, etc . . . normal purse stuff.

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Below are pictures of the bag completely packed. It’s not too bulgy. I added the Co-Pilot to “The List” because it is just that amazing!

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umbrella

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Nothing fancy, but pretty effective. When closed, it is about the same size as my 12 oz water bottle. Tucks into my straw bag or black tote and doesn’t weigh a ton. This one is strictly for emergencies when out and about.

I usually just toss on my rain jacket when I am at home and need to be out in the rain. Sometimes if Jasper needs a quick trip out, I’ll grab one of the larger umbrellas that sit by the front door.

Something I am wondering about . . .  is an umbrella or a rain jacket easier when traveling. I have London on my mind . . .

London: hopes & plans

Hopes

I am planning a trip to London in October 2019. Hoping and planning are two of my favorite things about traveling. I do love the adventure, but I also love all the anticipation and preparation. I haven’t done much traveling since my auto-immune diagnosis. I’m setting out to change that!

I drew up a bucket list during a time of deep struggle and told myself, “Get well, and get going.” It has helped me remember my “why” when things get rough or I wake up achey. I have been working very hard to regain my health and to learn to cope with the permanent side effects. I feel pretty confident that by next Autumn, I will be ready.

and Plans

  1.  We’ve been diligently working to pay off medical debt. It was $20,000 when we started. If things continue along their present course we should be clear sometime in January 2019.
  2. Then I will save and save and save.
  3. I have decided to mainly focus on the Kensington area of London. Hotel picked, flights priced (well, you can really on estimate this far in advance), transportation researched, and days planned.
  4. The planning of days includes plenty of time to just rest. I’ve built our trip around running around in the morning, having a nice lunch out, and heading back to the hotel by 3 or 4. I’ll grocery shop so we have soup/sandwich type dinners in our room.
  5. And my fellow adventurer?  Hannah, Abby, and maybe Abby’s mom. Any other mother-daughter-sister duos want to tag along.

straw bag

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I used this straw bag almost all summer. It became my “go to town” bag for those trips that included meetings, meals, and transitions between errands. I didn’t use it for quick trips to town for groceries.

It sits in my closet and holds my umbrella, water bottle, first aid pouch, utensils to to pouch (fork, napkin, hand sanitizer, and reusable straw), a couple of reusable bags, and my EDC (every day carry) purse.  I pop whatever I might need for whatever meeting I might have in there the night before too.  In other words, all those things I might forget if I am running late in the morning.

vital worship conference

Vital Worship Conference: June 19-21, Grand Rapids Michigan

Weather:  Day 84, Night 57, Partly cloudy, but no rain.
Dress — “comfortable”

Activities:

Travel Tuesday early morning and Thursday evening
Conference Tuesday afternoon to Thursday after lunch, opportunities to walk in nature preserve, walking between buildings

Packing List

  • Wear: shirt, pants, cardigan & loafers
  • In Roller Bag:
    • 45DEDB9D-D609-4EEA-B9F5-42A9F75965642 shirts, 1 pair pants, 1 jacket
    • Underwear/bras/socks — sports sandals
    • C6E55FC8-2514-46F8-84E1-05BA813D6057311: face cleaner, face cream, lotion, BB cream, lipgloss, tide stick, contacts + solution, toothpaste, deodorant, lip balm
    • 81BB0E15-1574-42F4-8277-C8BCA3358655spiff kit: comb, emery board, Rx+supplements, toothbrush, wipes for glasses, small travel first aid pouch, sanitizer wipes, alarm clock, flashlight, phone charger + stand
    • food bag: protein shake packets, trail mix, chocolate bar
    • pen + journal + conference notebook
    • book
  • B193C950-B0B2-4AF1-A640-5134DEF19730Purse:  Wallet, glasses/sunglasses, and water bottle