Welcome, Grateful November

For whatever reason, I am bursting with heightened emotions today, my senses feeling highly piqued and everything feeling especially vibrant & intense (touch wood, in a good way). I don’t know whether I’m riding a post-trip high or a post-concert high or a pre-OTHER-trip (yes, another one!) high, but I know full well that this ain’t gonna stick around forever (heck, it could have flitted away by the time I press “publish”)… So I’m gonna go ahead and ride it out while I can, acutely thankful when periods like this decide to pass on through.

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I love this month leading up to the holidays (with so much talk of “November gratitude” and much-anticipated reunions on the horizon), and I’m currently finding the early-evening, wintry-hued skies cozy and contemplative versus dark and depressing. (Again, we’ll see how long this lasts, so just bear with me please:))

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I’ve started about a bajillion other mini-posts about amazing adventures and epiphanies and assorted thoughts I’ve had over recent months (I can’t keep up!), but for tonight, I’m just gonna post this photo love and soak up some ambient KEXP tunes, as I plug away on several more deadlines that are quickly approaching (a peril of self-employment and my recent self-granted vacation).

I mention this not to complain—it was 1,000% worth it—but rather to say that are often periods of hard work and long hours, and my life is far from an endless session of carefree gallivanting and fun. (I don’t know who I’m justifying this to, and who knew this would sneak out right now, but I admit I’ve bristled the few times I’ve heard comments like, “Your life is one big vacation!”)  Like everything, it’s a balance, and one I’m recently—finally—feeling pretty darn good about.

Happy November, friends. Let’s make it a great one.

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Solo Mission Musica

A few weekends ago, I did something rather brave (for me, anyway). I went to a music festival alone about three-and-a-half hours from where I live. Sure, I’ve traveled abroad alone and moved abroad alone, but somehow this wee domestic venture felt like I’d passed a new milestone of sorts.

Anyone who knows me, has heard me rave about Pickathon, a magical, friendly, music-filled gathering in the Oregon woods. I went last year with two of my Seattle BFFs, and I was instantly SMITTEN. Wooded stages & barn venues dotted with twinkle lights, hay bales as seats, flowing wine & beer accompanied by tasty food (all local, of course), kind folks, a sea of tents under a calming canopy of green. Everything about it appealed to my inner kinda-hippie and my love of gooooooood soul-soothing tunes. It’s a sweaty, stinky, dusty affair with a little dose of over-the-top hippie-dippie and PDX hipster, and yet, I just love everything about it.

I’d waited a full year to return again; however, when the time came, I couldn’t find a single soul able and/or willing to join. Not a one. Womp wah. After some pleas, some long shots, some pity-partying and a good amount of fretting, I decided to suck it up and simply follow my gut. I wanted to go so badly, so why not go? Alas, I did (thanks to some gear borrowing and awesome cheerleading from some really special friends. I know SUCH good people here). I’m so glad I listened to those inner whispers. They didn’t steer me wrong.

Pine State Visit by Corinne Whiting

Pickathon canopy by Corinne Whiting

Pickathon sign by Corinne Whiting

Pickathon woods by Corinne Whiting

Food court by Corinne Whiting

Pickathon barn by Corinne Whiting

Shakey Graves by Corinne Whiting

In honor of incredible music, here are some great tunes to enjoy:

Friday Hodgepodge

This week I’ve been a bit introspective (and at times also quite sad). I could blame the gray (or February in general), but I also like to think that I usually feel this way when I’m in the midst of a shift–on the cusp of some sort of emotional/spiritual growth.

Some really fun things happened this week, too, like many quality catch-ups over tea, beer and bahn mi, and Tuesday I attended a spontaneous dinner party during which we looked up our astrological rising moon signs over delicious plates of elk stir-fry (so very Pacific NW, non:)?). It was great fun. I’ve been seeing a good deal of theater these past weeks (which is great!), and I’ve been easing my way back into physical activeness (canal runs, a beach bike ride and many hours logged on the yoga mat in my favorite yellow studio).

Recently, I’ve been:

*Listening to this (LOVE)

*and watching precious bluegrass talents like these guys:

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*Contemplating doing this (next Friday–could be a good way to kick off my birthday weekend!)

*Getting back into watching great docs like this one:

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*Indulging (still, oops):

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*Trying hard to believe this:

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Any great finds on your end as of late?

HAPPY happy weekend, friends.