Can you believe it’s practically July? The days of never ending winter are a thing of the past and summer is in full swing here in Toronto. It seems like my first quarterly update of 2018 was so long ago that I almost forgot to do this one! Good thing for editorial calendars and reminders! So what have I been up to? Let’s find out.
I can honestly say that I barely remember April. It is like a blur. As you might recall we were in the process of getting our house ready for sale. That made for a very stressful March, which means April was even more insane. It was time to sell!
I’m not sure what selling a house is like where you live, but here in Canada it’s an excruciating process. We purged and moved things out so the stagers can come and do their thing. All that in anticipation of total strangers and nosy neighbours invading our home. We decided to take a quick trip to Montreal to avoid the madness. We have done this road trip many times in the past, but this time it was like a getaway.
In a way, it was a much-needed break after few stressful weeks. It also an overdue visit to a place we both adore. Luckily, the housing market in Toronto was just warming up and we sold the house in few days. One thing down, thousands of other things to do.
The month of May felt like we could breathe again. The stress of house selling was gone and we had couple of months until the closing. In a way, this was a dangerous plan as it gave us a false sense of time. It suddenly felt like we had a lot of time before we had to move.
We took it a bit easy and since the weather was getting a lot better. So we took advantage of it by spending more time outside. I even manage to squeeze trips to Quebec City and to Montreal (again). There are many great places to see in Canada, but these two are definitely on my faves list. So far, I’ve been able to write about Quebec City, but Montreal has to wait for now.
Quebec City is a little slice of Europe here in Canada. You feel like you’ve stepped back in time. About 400 years that is! It’s an amazing place and definitely one I go back to quite a bit.
May also brought Doors Open Toronto, which is a neat way to see the hidden and forgotten places in Toronto. We managed to score a visit to an observation deck and a “hidden” subway station that is probably the worst kept secret in the city. There was also a gorgeous library and the trading floor of the former Toronto Stock Exchange. Lucky for you, I wrote all about it, in case you missed that post.
The reality of moving started to hit more in June. The house is half-empty and we live amongst boxes and donation piles. How do we have so much stuff? I think moving is the only time we actually get rid of things we don’t need or even remember having.
This process alone is definitely a learning experience. So much emotion goes with it and you discover things about yourself. I was happy to purge, but heartbroken to get rid of some things. It felt like I was erasing my life and memories. It made me sad, angry and defiant. I needed to be ready to let things go. So I purged in phases. Have you ever heard of the Komari method? As written in this book, The Life-Changing Magic Of Tidying Up: The Japanese Art Of Decluttering And Organizing, it is just that.
Basic idea is that you divide your possessions into thematic piles like clothes, shoes, collectibles, etc. You then make a decision to keep it or toss it based on the joy factor. If it brings you happiness, you keep it. If it doesn’t, you let it go. It wasn’t easy, but it was definitely cathartic.
In the last couple of months, I had an opportunity to catch up with some blogger friends. Since I’ve started this blogging journey, I’ve met some awesome people. Most of the time they are online, but every now and then I get an opportunity to meet them in person.
First up was a visit from Penny (Penny in Wanderland) who visited Toronto from Greece. Although we connected through Facebook groups and Instagram, this was the first time meeting each other in person. Penny and her boyfriend were lucky to hit a warmer stretch of weather so we managed to get some patio time. Always a great way to catch up.
The second visitor was my friend Florencia (El Mundo de Floxie) from Argentina who I met in Iceland. Together we did a little tour of Canada and had a blast in Toronto, Quebec City and Montreal. I must say, it was a very good time. It was so much fun to see my favourite places through someone else’s eyes. It brought me a new appreciation for the place I call home.
At the beginning of the year, I made a goal of writing two blogs per week. It was an ambitious and achievable goal. Until the end of May, I managed to follow that schedule. Then life happened. There were too many things going on and I wasn’t able to keep up.
It was a bit deflating. I was so busy that I lost my writing mojo. I tried to write but nothing happened. I couldn’t even write a bad page to edit. Instead of beating myself over it, I opted to do one blog a week. So far, this means I missed five post. In a grand scheme of things, it’s not a big deal. That realization really helped to ease up the stress that was building up.
I think my mojo is coming back. I feel a stream of inspiration returning and I find that optimistic. Fingers crossed it stays.
Ever since I’ve started to blog full time and work for myself, I feel a surge of creativity. In my previous update, I told you that I would be working on some books. That is still high on my list although it had to go on a backburner for now. I just don’t have the time.
However, there is also another project in the works. It’s exciting and probably larger than I expected, so it will take a little while before I can fully unveil it to you. It is in part an experiment and in part a pet project. I can tell you that it’s definitely travel related. Would you expect anything less?
There is no shortage of ideas, but there is a shortage of time. I’m hoping that once the house situation is settled, I’ll be able to get back to the writing routine. There is a lot of stuff I still want to write about!
In addition, I’ve been making revisions and updates to my blog. Have you noticed? I wasn’t fully happy with certain functions so I’ve changed my theme (again) and this time I hope it works. I’ve been cleaning up broken links, updating some posts and doing plenty of behind the scenes work. Who said blogging was easy? They sure haven’t had to run one.
What the future holds
Many of our belongings are going into storage for few months as we embark on our new adventure. I can tell you now that we’ll be splitting our home base between Toronto and Italy. Next few months are going to be a completely new experience. We have some of the details, but as everything else with this journey, we learned that best-laid plan could change with a blink of an eye.
So far, the plans are fluid and nothing is set in stone. This whole experience has been one-step forward, two steps back. Just when we think we have the next steps figured out something new comes up and all planning goes out the window.
Best part about the whole thing is that life is an adventure and it’s definitely not boring.