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July 2021 Check In

A lot of this year so far has been a blur for me. I'm preparing for the 4th of July weekend coming up and trying to remember where June went.

For those that haven't gotten a chance to read my last post, I just want to briefly touch on the fact that I've backed away a bit from the schedule I'd been keeping with this page and the topics I was writing on. I found at a certain point that I was unhappy with my writing. I found myself consumed with trying to figure out what others want to read rather than what I want to write. I finally faced the fact that I was unhappy and it was never meant to be like this. So I've taken a chance to step away and take a breath.

So what's been happening behind the scenes?

I'm still doing research and taking notes. I'm still planning posts. But I'm going back to my roots, and by that I mean that I'm going back to the things that I find interesting. Maybe others will find them interesting as well and maybe not. I'm taking my time to make sure they're the quality I want them to be. I'm going to take some time to get a number of them cued up before I start releasing them so I have a bit of cushion with my time.

That's also been a big struggle for me: my time. I've taken on a project for myself at work which has been consuming a lot of my time and focus. My work has also picked up and gotten busier again, meaning I'm exhausted by the time I get home and sleeping in late in the morning. So I don't have the time or energy to pump out the posts as quickly as I had previously been doing. I'd like to get back to a schedule for my posts again when I get back to it. I'm just not quite sure what that will look like right now. But for now, the monthly check ins are things that I can comfortably ensure to get out on time since there isn't research or anything like that going into it.

Which leads me to the things I've been up to.

For 3 weeks in May, I was on vacation from work, which was a much needed vacation. I came back to work on June 1 and admittedly struggled getting back into the swing of things for awhile. I also took on a decent sized project for myself at work almost immediately after I returned. It's been fulfilling to see the outcome as it slowly comes together, but some days it's also incredibly daunting.

In the early part of the month, I took a weekend trip back to my hometown to celebrate my cousin's son's high school graduation. I hadn't gotten to go back since December, so it was nice to go and see my family. I grew up very close with that side of my family, so it was great to see everyone and goof off together and have a good time. It was also great because it was the first my sister and I had gotten to spend that kind of quality time together and I had been really missing her.

Later in the month, I had gotten the chance to meet up with a good friend of mine and celebrate so many of the hurdles he had overcome. I briefly talked about him earlier in the year when I talked a bit about transgender day of awareness and his journey. Without a doubt, my favorite part of the entire celebration was watching the pure joy that was on his face. It was obvious that it was joy that came from his heart and radiated out. I've known him for about 8 years now and while yes there were tons of happy times and memories, none of those moments were quite like this. The joy and happiness didn't pour out of him quite like this. It makes me happy and makes my heart happy to watch one of my very good friends be so incredibly happy.

Back at the end of May, I had a few friends over to celebrate my birthday and one of my friends gave me a fun little gift. Knowing my love for crocheting and knitting, she made me a small bag to hold my supplies, as well as stitch markers for my projects. Of course, knowing my love for cows, she made them cow themed.

Not only do I absolutely love these, but I closely examined the cute little cow stitch markers and thought, "hey, I can do that!" With a bit of googling, a trip to the craft store where I incidentally bumped into the friend that made these for me, I gathered the supplies I needed and started playing around.

I think it goes without saying that I've found myself another new hobby that I love. It's really along the same lines with jewelry making.

Of course I've also been watching various shows and movies. So for those interested, let me share some of what I've been watching recently:

  • Chernobyl: I know this mini series came out awhile ago, but I've finally gotten to sit down and watch it. I remember watching a movie in a high school science class about the Chernobyl disaster. It didn't go into nearly as much detail as this series went into, but it sparked my curiosity. So having this series that dove even deeper and went into much more detail got me googling. Honestly, it's something I'd be interested in writing about on here at some point in the future.

  • Mare of Easttown: This for me felt a lot like the series "The Killing" that I watched for awhile in college. It had a wildly different story line, but something about the pace, the general community feel, etc. just felt so familiar to me. Others have also given it rave reviews, so I will simply say, "I agree, it was incredible," and let you all experience it for yourselves.

  • The Matrix: Definitely not the first time I've watched this one. But it's one I hadn't watched in many many many years. Honestly the last I watched it was likely back when I was a teenager. It was really fun to watch it with a different perspective simply as someone who is older. It's a classic movie for a reason, it was just as enjoyable this time as it was the first time I watched it, if not more so.

  • Friday the 13th: Again, not a new one for me, but one that I hadn't watched for over a decade. I had forgotten so much of the actual plot to the point that when you get to the big reveal at the end, I had completely forgotten it. It was almost like watching it for the first time again which made it really fun.

  • American Horror Story: 1984: I had actually watched this before watching Friday the 13th and it encouraged me to look up Friday the 13th. I have watched a handful of the American Horror Story seasons. Some I definitely enjoy more than others. But reading about this one and the way it was somewhat inspired from the old '80s horror movies that I grew up enjoying, I wanted to give it a try. In my opinion, it was by far one of the best seasons I'd ever watched. Although I will add that it started stronger than it ended in my opinion. But it was still a fun watch.

  • Crime Scene Kitchen: I had seen ads for this on Hulu and as a lover of cooking and baking competition shows, it caught my eye. So I've watched the episodes they've put up so far here and there as light entertainment. The premise is that bakers will go through a kitchen where there are clues as to what dessert had been prepared in there earlier, such as baking pans, design patterns, fruit, chocolate shavings, etc. But there will also be things to trick them as well. You have to bake whatever is your very best guess and the goal is to not just guess correctly, but create the best version of that dessert.

However, there were also shows and movies that I started and abandoned after awhile because I couldn't get into them:

  • Forgetting Sarah Marshall: As a lover of essentially all of the main cast, It would seem like a movie that I would absolutely love. And yes it's one that's been out for ages, but never got around to watching. I threw it one night, mostly for background noise. I wound up turning it off mid way through. I hated it so much. I didn't find it funny, the entire plot was very troubling to me, and I genuinely don't understand why it was the hit that it became. It wound up being an absolute disappointment for me.

  • American Horror Story: Cult: After talking to my sister about the 1984 season, we compared notes on which seasons we watched, which we liked and which we didn't. She commented that she watched the cult season. I asked if it was any good and she indicated that it wasn't great, but it wasn't terrible. So after finishing the 1984 season, I figured I'd give it a try and at least see if it was worth the watch. I did watch a good portion of the season, but honestly didn't care for it. At a certain point, I questioned why I was choosing to watch something I wasn't enjoying. I decided to stop it and move on.

I'm trying to make more choices like that where I choose to leave something unfinished if I don't like it. I have pushed myself to finish a lot of shows, movies, and books that I didn't enjoy, but wanted to say, "but I finished it." It really didn't benefit me in any productive way. So why bother? Instead, I'm trying to take in more of what I enjoy and leave the things I don't enjoy by the wayside.

It may be awhile until I post again, but it's not because I've up and quit or anything like that. I'm still reading, I'm still researching, I'm still preparing posts. Things will come back around to a regular posting schedule again, but until then I hope that you are well and you can always get in touch.


Instagram: @writerhannahb

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