Wednesday, February 25, 2015

WIAW: Los Alamos

What I Ate Wednesday!
Thanks as always to Jenn for hosting.
I'm still living in Los Alamos for another couple weeks. Yesterday there was the prettiest light snow all day just drifting in front of the clinic window. Not so much that the roads are bad, which is really the ideal amount of snow.
The walk by my apartment.
Meals here have been a little more convenience-based that when I'm at home. Although there's a relatively functional kitchen, I don't have all my tools and space so I've been making simpler things.
Breakfast: Avocado Toast. Nothing about my love for avocado toast has changed though. This is half an avocado on 2 pieces of Dave's Killer Bread with grape tomatoes, salt and pepper.
Lunch: Amy's Bowls. The grocery store up here has a lot more options compared to the one in Albuquerque in terms of healthy ready-made food. I've been taking either these or the burritos for lunch.
Snacks: Banana and granola bar. Unpictured. Usually I take these with me to eat during work. I remember I time when I really would have eaten just the Amy's bowl for lunch - I was hungry all the time. I eat a lot more snacks now.
Dinner: Pizza. John and I made these individual pizzas using pitas for the crust this weekend, and I've been making them on my own for dinners. Loaded with broccoli, pepper, tomato and olive with Daiya mozzarella for the cheese, they're a complete and very easy meal.


And that's a day in Los Alamos. My hours are normal clinic schedule, so I've been knitting a ton and working out a little and just trying to enjoy living up here.
Thanks for reading, see you soon.

Monday, February 23, 2015

Living Alone After Marriage

There's only one pillow on my bed.

Only one person's clothes in my closet.

Only my food in the fridge.

John and I have been married for 2 and a half years, and we're like annoyingly you-want-to-punch-us-in-the-face happy.

About 2 weeks after we got married I left to live with my sister in Ohio for a month for a clinical rotation. 

Since that time, we've spent no small number of nights apart - like when I traveled for interviews or went home for my Grandfather's funeral. 

However, I realized just in the past couple weeks that I've never actually lived alone.

When I got married I moved from a house with 3 other [wonderful] women to the apartment with John. I had always had roommates.

So now I'm in Los Alamos, in the middle of my month here, and it's the first time I've ever had a long term place to live that's just mine. 

A weird thing happened when I got here, I'll call it:

"Stages of Slovenly"

1. When I arrived I bought 3 pints of non-dairy ice cream but forgot trash bags, I didn't put away a single article of clothing for 3 days and I carried snacks into all the rooms including the shower.

2. I sang louder in the shower, waited a long time before washing any dishes, and experimented more with how many different parts of the floor and furniture I could cover with my clothing.

3. For a solid 2.5 days I couldn't use the big chair in front of the TV because I coated it in sweaters and knitting and bags.

4. Instead of planning ahead, I went to the grocery store at least 3 times in a week. I mostly ate a weird combination of chips, soup and frozen Amy's burritos. I made the bed once? I think?

5. I took my iPad to bed and watched YouTube and episodes of all my favorite shows for another couple hours after I initially intended to sleep. 

6. I did not once close the bathroom door.

7. After about a week and a half, I finally bought trash bags and a candle. Before John arrived to visit I picked up everything off the floor and cleaned up the tables. 

After he left I found myself washing my dishes right away and so far I've at least piled my clothes in the closet or on the dresser, instead of all over the whole apartment. 

I don't envy those who are forced to live apart from their spouses - I'm lucky to be driving distance for the weekend, but some people live across the country or overseas from their loved ones and that is no small thing. I miss John - noises startle me more, it's harder to get up in the morning, it's harder to stay warm and well, I just like hanging out with him. 

With that said, this is an opportunity that I am choosing to appreciate. It gives me the unique opportunity to examine my habits and remember what it's like to be me without anyone else.

Here's the lesson I've drawn: sometimes it's nice to have a space to be irresponsible and sloppy. No matter how tolerant the people you live with, it's sort of like taking a deep breath not having to worry about even perceiving judgment for the things I've left out or the dishes I've left in the sink.

That said, I need my house to feel ordered in order to feel like my life is ordered. 

It doesn't do me any favors to give in to the entropy. 

So I have a couple more weeks here and in that time I hope to balance appreciation of alone time and my own space with order and a certain amount of active care of my environment. 

Living alone after marriage isn't easy, but for me I think it's a good thing, just for a little bit.

Thanks for reading, see you soon.

Sunday, February 22, 2015

Los Alamos Adventures

Are you watching the Oscars tonight? I'm curled up with my laptop and some knitting excited to see Neil Patrick Harris, all the awards and most importantly all the gowns.

I'm not on my usual couch though - I'm living in Los Alamos for the month. I'm here for a rotation at a clinic, which I'm really enjoying, and I'm in my apartment here with just a little bit of snow outside.

Los Alamos is an interesting place - about 11,000 people, but the highest PhD's per capita in the country because of the laboratory. The town started during World War II as a secret city where the atomic bomb was made. It's a really interesting mix of modern and historical. It's also really pretty - greener compared to Albuquerque and I'm really enjoying it.

The medical center.

This weekend John came up from Albuquerque to stay with me and we went on a few adventures.

Walks around town:

The Science Museum and Historical Museum: There's amazing history here with the Manhattan Project and the creation of the atomic bomb, and the labs are still doing all kinds of research.

I don't have all the luxuries of my kitchen in Albuquerque, but it's really a pretty nice place here. We kept it simple for dinners with some pizza on the first night and loaded taco salads the second. 

The snow up at the ski hill here wasn't great, but we decided to go play in it and took some snowshoes.

We also went to the Valles Caldera - it's a valley created by a volcano about 1.2 million years ago. I hope to be able to go back several times at different seasons to see what it looks like. Today it was misty and snowy and that made it feel like our own little world, but the views are incredible when it's sunny, so it's on my list to go back in the summer.

The visitor center had this cozy fireplace and tea and cocoa. 

John had to leave to get back to Albuquerque since he has work tomorrow, but it really feels like we managed to pack a lot into one short weekend. 

It's nice here and I'm learning a lot - it's nice to go out into a community and see a practice similar to the one I hope to have one day. 

And now, back to the Oscars.

Thanks for reading, see you soon.