Level 42 + The Next Year’s Bucket List

Here I am, 42 years old and honestly, how did I get here? Yeah yeah, the natural passing of time, but really, HOW? I don’t feel this old (maybe in the knees and hips), I still feel like a young adult at best, no matter how much life experience I rack up.

One of my friends asked me the other day if I like being older and honestly, that was probably the first time I stopped to think about my answer. I do like it. I feel content. I’m more secure in my relationships than I’ve ever been but also in myself. I feel like that life experience mentioned above has molded me into a pretty sound person.

Sure, there are things I want to change and that will probably always be the way but I am ridiculously blessed and I know it. With all that in mind I thought I’d set myself some Level 42 goals because it’s good to always be always aiming for something, however small. I plan to grow my hair, concentrate on Wicca and spell casting – visit a couple of places – but I also have some additional plans.

In no particular order:

Cut down on spending

Recently I totted up how many times I’d ordered from ASOS this year (so far) and I’m too embarrassed to share the figure. I’ve been leaning on shopping for way too long as an emotional top up and it is no longer something I want in my life.

80% of the time I return the order anyway and that almost makes it worse. All that wasted time and energy returning packages. I could be reading!

So, no more… waste. No more fast fashion – more of a sensible attitude towards my finances. Like a proper 40 something.

Draw more

This one is pretty self-explanatory. I want to draw and colour more, it makes me happy. I’m under no illusion about my talents but that’s not the point. Being bad at something and doing it anyway is freeing.

Guess who got a Hobbycraft voucher to spend on materials for her birthday?

Learn burlesque

In the new year I’m going to look for a burlesque class. I’m sick of hating on my body so I’m going to start celebrating it instead. That simple.

I’m not looking to be the next (fat) Dita Von Teese but I’ve been inspired by a gorgeous plus size dancer on Instagram and let me tell you, she makes it look hottttt.

To quote Penny in Dirty Dancing:

“God wouldn’t have given you maracas if he didn’t want you to shake ’em…”

This point will hopefully play into the next one.

Make more time for boning

I want to start making more time for sex. With a full-time job and a busy social life, it’s easy to put it off most nights. It’s not fair and I don’t want to put it in second place anymore.

My husband is fine and I want to jump him – but we do need to make time and take our time. I’ll be making more effort from now on, and if that means putting on more Marvin Gaye and practicing my new burlesque moves then bring it.

Sign up for Astrology and Tarot courses

These are my next courses and I’m really excited about them. I’ve loved my Wicca diplomas so much and I think of astrology and tarot as an extension of those.

I don’t know where any of my new knowledge will lead me, I’m just open to magic and that’s enough for now.

Buy a home

This is definitely the biggest goal on the list and the scariest – and maybe this isn’t something you’re supposed to talk about openly – but we’ve been offered some help in this area and hopefully next year will be the year we move forward. This is one of the main reasons I want to be more sensible with any spare cash we have – I can’t honestly borrow money or take on something so committed while still being a thoughtless shopper. It’s just not the one.

I hope this happens for us, I’m sure it will but I’m under no illusion – when we buy we won’t be able to buy in central Brighton and leaving it is massive. It will be worth it though.


So these are the goals I plan to stick to in my next year on Earth – I’ll keep you posted on my progress. Until then…

Bring it on, Level 42!

Project Miranda

I’m trying to sort my life out. Nothing drastic, just deciding what I want from this world and looking at ways to get it. I’m not unhappy; I just have a way to go creatively.

For a while I’ve been chatting about trying to go freelance. Not full-time but finding a way to get paid for things I write outside of my day job. It’s been a small dream for a long time and I’ve never got off my bum to do it. When I mentioned it to Helen she agreed to be my mentor (and task master) because she’s fantastic at organisation – and motivation.

So we’ve agreed to approach this pragmatically, setting achievable goals every week. I’m to tackle them weekly and then present them to Helen (AKA Mum) on Fridays – and if I haven’t done something, she’s allowed to go in hard on my procrastinating arse. Which sounds like a fair arrangement? We have a safe word, just in case it all gets too much. It’s “Miranda”. As in Miranda Priestly of The Devil Wears Prada, the ultimate ball-breaking boss bitch.

This week I think I’ve got this – my tasks are already half done and I’ll be sitting down to finish this evening. My tasks are:

 

  • Set up a portfolio website
  • Find five potential websites to submit work to
  • Select five posts I’m proud of

 

As a bonus, I set myself an additional goal – to write a pros and cons list for staying at my current job. That’s been eye-opening to say the least… but I won’t share it, I don’t really like talking about work in this space.

However, the rest of it is fair game. I thought chatting about it publicly would keep me accountable and spur me on. I have nothing to lose and even if I do, at least I’ve finally tried.

Watch this space!

 

October’s Pledge for Buns of Steel

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Image via Unsplash

I haven’t been to the gym in two months.

Who fucking cares, Christa?, is probably what you’re thinking and you’re right. In the grand scheme of things, who cares how I get my exercise? I care, obviously but something has given me the fear and I haven’t worked out in a room full of other sweaty folk in ages.

I want to get back into it but the mornings are shivery and being in bed is so glorious, how am I honestly supposed to fight that? Plus, I’m busy doing stuff. Who has a spare 90 minutes to walk in one spot trying not to make eye contact with the dude next to them?

My deal with myself was to start going back in October. We’re four days in and I’m still not even remotely interested. I’ve gone out of my way to walk my 10,000 steps a day and tomorrow I swear I’ll walk through the door of The Gym but I can’t think of anything more boring. Yet, I miss that feeling, the one health nuts bang on about: the endorphins, innit?

So, consider me starting off lightly back on the track I want to be on. I don’t want to be as lazy as I have been, cosy though it’s been. I don’t give a fuck about skinny which is handy as I’ve never been that, but I wouldn’t mind legs like lead pipes and buns of steel…

We’ll see, eh? 💪🏻

Definitely May(be) & My June/July Pledge

Artist’s rendition of what Jill and I will look like hanging out

May looks set to be a very packed month round these parts. I’ve already chalked off my first social engagements (which went swimmingly) and can now start looking forward to the arrival of a very special guest indeed.

Clue: it’s not the Queen of England. It’s waaaaaaaaaaaaaaay more exciting than that!

I’m thinking you’ll get a lot of social media updates about the penultimate week in May when Jillian and I are finally together so maybe we’ll get creative on that front and wow you with something different. Or maybe we’ll just eat lots, go and see lots, and watch lots. That’s more likely tbh.

I can’t say much other than I’m really starting to get excited about the whole visit. Although, not so excited about the extensive Spring cleaning I will have to do before our home is fit for guests (You’re worth it Jill).

I’d also like to take a moment in this post to lay down my pledge for the next few upcoming months (if it’s in writing I have to do it right?):

From the 1st of June to the 31st July 2016 I, Christa Bass, will not shop

Since that is rather a bold statement, I will elaborate below.

During the month of June and July 2016:

  • I cannot buy: shoes, clothing, accessories or books
  • I may only buy essentials which include: my base make-up items, shampoo/conditioner, moisturiser and nail polish remover*
  • I can buy gifts for other people but only if required/authorised by my credit card holder (which will be Glynn, who I have chosen as he’s closest)
  • I will remove my credit card details from all my most visited shopping sites which is pretty much just ASOS
  • I will use put money I would ordinarily spend onto my credit card and then into our savings account
  • I am allowed to have my hair and nails done because that comes out of the well-being budget (LOL, loopholes!)
  • Instead of spending money during these months, I will read books from my To Read pile, blog and go to the gym at least 3 times a week

Now I don’t think any of you realise what a profound effect this will have on my day-to-day life as I am such a prolific shopper. Like, I have a very real addiction and I want to try to shake it. I shop alllllll the time and have a package delivered to work nearly every day (if not multiple packages).

I send back a lot of things which is great practice but I do get a big kick out of the initial purchase and receiving of items, which makes me think I need to find another outlet. I don’t know what that outlet is but I’m going to try and find out. I’m hoping it will be working out (for the endorphins not weight loss, yo) and blogging more.

So there you are. An exciting month coming up, with two months of sensible behaviour to follow. I think that’s a good balance.

Until then, my friends, it’s business as usual on the blog and in my life. We’ve had some sad news on G’s side of the family which means we’ll be travelling up north in the next week or so but apart from that, same old.

What are you most looking forward to in May/the Summer? ❤

*Includes female products, cotton wool, etc of course but who wants to list every little thing?

Day 31: Happy NY!

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The exact opposite of how I’ll be spending my NYE

Happy New Year everyone!

Whatever you’re doing with your evening; whether you party like it’s 1999, go to bed @ 9 or get drunk on cheap Baileys in your pyjamas in front of Alan Carr (me), I hope you have a great time.

And you know what? I’m a sucker for a “Go you!” meme, that’s no secret but I hope this fresh year brings you whatever you need. Maybe we’ll all change a bit and start 2016 with a fresh attitude. Maybe we will get that great new job or stop letting people take advantage of our better natures.

Maybe nothing at all will change. Maybe we’ll still be envious of a loved one, or too hard on our bodies. Maybe we’ll never pick up a sketchbook to find out if there’s an illustrator trapped within (me).

Any and all of that is okay. Let’s make a pact not to be horrible to ourselves about every little thing. If we want to make positive changes, let’s try to do that but every little bump in the road is not the end of the world. We’re already good enough, more than enough actually and we should learn to accept this.

So yes, that will be me starting to get a hangover after my second glass of lukewarm Irish Cream, probably having a bath with my book and trying desperately to stay awake until midnight, just because. That’s what we do in our house.

NYE makes me sad and I’ve always been relieved when it’s gone. But I like the promise of a new day, a new page. I just know that every day is a new page, not just the 1st January.

Catch you in 2016 my friends!

Resolution Road

And now we welcome the New Year, full of things that have never been.” ~ Rainer Maria Rilke

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Happy New Year! (Got to start with the obligatory NY inspirational quote, natch).

I have, of course, already lightly laid down the gauntlet for New Year. That list contained only a handful of areas I would like to examine in 2015.

I haven’t changed my mind about any of them, though you could argue that I’ve broken at least three already (I’m not counting my indiscretions until 5th January, which is Monday re: moving, being angry and spending though). Hey, these are my resolutions, I’ll be sketchy about the details if I want to.

The good news is that this is Day 2 and I haven’t had chocolate. Sadly this coincides with a crippling bout of PMS cravings. My only fear is that most of my historic chocolate eating has been instinctual. What if I eat it automatically and don’t realise until it’s too late? THE HORROR.

I’m imagining myself as a light and airy waif come December 31st 2015, all my lumpy bits having miraculously melted away due to lack of Dairy Milk. But who the hell am I kidding? I didn’t quit crisps, sweet/salty popcorn, jelly babies or non-chocolaty cake. Butter, cream or bread. I’m not an idiot.

*Insert Homer Simpson-esque dribbling here*

I just wanted to add to my previous Resolutions post, not with too much more, certainly with not too much more New Year, New Me poppycock. Let’s face it, it’s unlikely that this is the year I change absolutely everything that I dislike about my life, lovely thought that might be.

Short of wanting more money, a holiday and not being out of breath when I do up my bra in the morning, I’m pretty happy. I’m trying to be kinder to myself and to believe that I’m fucking fabulous the way I am.

Continue reading Resolution Road