October started off warm and humid, and I was not that happy about it. But about halfway through, the temperature dropped by nearly thirty degrees.
Autumn is finally here! It’s PSL, wool socks, and scarf time!
Or so I thought. My emotions are on the same rollercoaster as this New England weather! Even though wool socks and scarves are still a little too extra, I’m enjoying the additional time to take the kayak out.
I’m off to dig my favorite corduroys out of my bin of winter clothes now, in hopes that the rollercoaster gets shut down soon. Here’s what I got up to in October.
Cotuit, Hyannis, Mashpee, Salem, Sandwich
Visting Salem: This city is one of my favorites in the entire world! I don’t visit often enough. When I do, I get to spend time with old friends (and snuggle their new babies), try delicious new restaurants, and show other visitors around. This time, I finally met Sawyer, the adorable addition to the Rolke Family who was born just days before I took off to New Zealand.
I also met two girls visiting from North Carolina for brunch and site-seeing for a day. Melody and I met in Holocene, the online group for creative travelers and all three of us are part of Girls LOVE Travel on Facebook. Two great resources to meet like-minded people and engage in thoughtful conversations about travel and places.
Kayaking with MacKenzie. The two of us barely fit in my one-seater, but we voyaged out into the open… well, across the pond near our house. She mostly laid inside the kayak, resting her head on my legs while I paddled my heart out and complained about how long it took to get to the next beach and that water was dripping on her face. It was fun adventuring with her, all the same.
Published a guest post on Transformed Thru Travel. The very first one! My friend Suzie, who I met while in New Zealand, shared her story of overcoming debilitating bouts of anxiety and panic attacks to travel through 26 countries. She is now living and working in New Zealand for two years and traveling indefinitely for at least the next five years. Read her story.
If you are interested in sharing your own story or have some tips for travelers with mental health issues, take a look at my guest post guidelines and get in touch!
Challenges & Self-Care
I’ve written and rewritten this section three different times. Not being satisfied with any version I come up with, I’m just going to say that I’ve been spending a lot of time in front of my computer. At this point, I need to be tapping away at my keyboard, writing blog posts and interacting with other writers online. I actually love doing it and I know that the long hours will pay off, but I also need to pace myself. I have a long winter ahead of me.
I’m only two weeks into working solely online from home (the restaurant I work at closed for the winter), so I’m still learning how to take breaks, remain positive and productive, and still take care of myself. Even though I think I’m doing an alright job, there is room for improvement.
On the plus side, I am organized AF and can plow through a to-do list. Although, that to-do list IS neverending, which overwhelms me sometimes. To counteract that, I break it up into smaller daily to-do lists and I complete tasks based on priority. I feel accomplished at the end of the day and prepared to tackle the next list tomorrow.
I’m good at walking away from my desk when I complete a task (or if I’m feeling frustrated by one) for a short break to make tea or have a snack. Eating lunch away from my computer and taking a full 1/2 hour or a full hour (just like a “regular” lunch break) to reset is an important daily ritual, as well.
While these acts of self-care do help me, I need to create more time to get out of the house. Right now, I’ve only gone to the grocery store, to a coffee shop to work once, and met friends for lunch one time. It’s a work in progress.
What I’m Reading
I’m still reading The Handmaid’s Tale. I tend to read at night and fall asleep after just a couple pages, which forces me to start over again the next night. I might need to switch to morning reading if I ever want to finish a book.
What I’m Loving
Blue Tube. A non-profit organization focused on reducing and removing plastic litter from beaches and the ocean by providing a place to store clean plastic grocery bags. The grocery bags (donated by anyone willing to bring them to the beach) are held in a BLUE TUBE secured to a railing at public and private beaches.
The goal is to encourage anyone visiting the beach to grab a bag to pick up trash they find along the beach. Or they can pack their own trash in a bag instead of littering. With sponsorship, the organization provides the tube and works on gaining permission to place the tubes at beaches.
Why I’m Loving It
On their website, they state that a portion of the proceeds of sponsorships (it costs $125 a year) is donated to Sea Education Association. They don’t link to it on their site, but I think it’s SEA Semester, a school located in Falmouth, here on Cape Cod. If it is, I have friends who have both done the program and worked for the school. I support anything that raises money for a study abroad program, especially one as out of the box as this one.
That’s one reason why I mention it, but the other reason is that I love their Instagram account. Every now and then they post an image (like the one above) that asks whether or not a plastic item is recyclable. In the post, they answer yes or no and describe what to do with the item.
I’m a big supporter of recycling and try to keep up to date on what isn’t recyclable or how to recycle certain things. I’ve actually learned a couple of things from this account. For instance, a lot of plastic wrapping (like Ziplock bags and bubble wrap) is recyclable! They just need to be returned to the grocery store with other plastic bags.
Their accounts are not incredibly active or popular, but give them a follow! I believe Blue Tube is onto something and would love to see it take off.
More Next Month
I will work on incorporating more movement, time in nature, and time off into my everyday routine in November. With the weather being the way it has been (it’s currently 65F out on Cape Cod), I think I’ll be able to enjoy some more time in the kayak and going on nature/photography walks this month.
Read Other Monthly Updates