Change is in the air: La Valerosa

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You may have noticed a little update to the site this weekend.  Over the last six months, as I’ve become more certain about what I want to do with this space, I’ve been tinkering with a name change.  I loved the pun of To and Fromage, but I’ve been looking for something that suits me a little better.  My name, Valerie, means brave in French, and valerosa means courageous in Spanish.  I’ve always struggled a little to muster up the bravery to go after what I want, though somehow I usually manage to find my courage in the end.  So here’s to a new name, and being a little more lion-hearted.

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A Winter’s Night

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Is there snow where you live?  Winter has been visiting every few days here, and I’m spending as much time as possible curled up under cozy blankets with warm drinks.  Last year’s long harsh winter was a struggle for me, and I felt so low during all those bitter, gray days.  This year I’ve been focusing hard to fill my spare time up with good books, quiet documentaries, exercise, lots of citrus (grapefruit makes me sublimely happy these days), and spending time with good friends.  Daydreaming about the desert hasn’t hurt either ;)

What have you been doing to stave off the winter blues?

If you don’t have a song to sing you’re okay

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I have always been a little superstitious, especially about numbers.  Even numbers are better than odds, though for some reason, sevens are lucky.  I’d rather the year was 2014 than 2015, and I’d rather be 34 years old than 33.  Also nonsense, like, what happens on New Years or a birthday speaks to what will come in the year ahead.  Nothing in my experience backs up my superstitions: twenty-five was one of the best years of my life; while twenty-four was one of the most painful.  I don’t believe in fate, but these silly things still get to me.

My birthday is on Sunday.  Getting older has never bothered me, but this year I have to work over the weekend and the Mister will be away for school.  In the past, I would have gone off on a trip or taken a dance class or invited a bunch of friends over for dinner, so I’m a little frustrated to be stuck working at home.  Is it a bad omen about the year ahead?  Most likely not, and we have belated birthday plans in California in a couple of weeks.  Still, it’s like a little raincloud over my head that I just can’t seem to shake off.

It’s Friday, I’m in love

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I’m Austin-bound today for my sister’s high school graduation.  Being home and surrounded by family always feels so good, and I’m looking forward to Mexican food, a few hours at the pool, and spending some time with my parents and siblings.

The photo above, of my little sis, is about six years old, but it’s one of my favorites.  She has always been my favorite muse, and I’m excited to see what she’ll do in the world.

Have a lovely weekend!

Kiss me hard before you go

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A few times a year the Mister has to spend a few weeks in California for school.  Sometimes I get to go, too, but this time I have to stay home.  It’s strange to go about my day-to-day life without him around.  The furniture, the decor, the food–everything at home is the same, but nothing feels quite right.

When he’s away, I work longer hours and eat more simply.  I sleep in the middle of the bed and pull the blankets out from under the mattress so I can tuck them under my toes, which is nice.  I stay up late so we can video chat and he holds the camera up so I can watch the sunset in California, even though it’s been dark here for three hours.  I go out more with friends, but most nights I just want to curl up and go to sleep and will time to go by faster.

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