Life in Austin has had a slow, deliberate pace to it. Matt and I came in search of it, and found it for a few months. It was lonesome at times for an extrovert like myself, especially long hours working from home with no one to talk to. Visits from friends punctuated the spring and summer but largely our schedules have been wide open, devoid of "have to" obligations and schedule-filler type activities. I was learning to love it and enjoyed that I felt in control of my time. For the first time in my life I was able to practice yoga at least 3 times per week, as well as cook most meals from scratch, read extensively, lay by the pool at my leisure and have a clean apartment, all while freelancing as much as I could.
And then late August rolled in and we decided to:
- foster two, 4 1/2 week old black lab puppies (!)
- both take on new jobs (!!)
- get engaged (!!!)
These things have been fantastic and life changing and wonderful of course, but oh man, may I recommend not doing them all at the same time? We ended up having those pups for about a month, during which time we were basically housebound, despite them not being housebroken (so yeah, there was a large volume of pee cleanup involved). Matt's taken on a huge role at a new startup, and I - initially in search of a part-time job with a good discount - accepted a position at Paper Source, which immediately turned into a Supervisor role. I'm there 30 hours a week while still freelancing.
Also, we are trying to plan some big chunks of our wedding (you know, like, the date, and the venue).
As soon as we got the pups adopted out to loving, stable homes, I tried to start clawing my way out of the freelance hole I'd let myself fall into. I had surprisingly found it hard to focus when, every ten minutes or so I'd be wiping up a lake of urine, trying to keep them from chewing on our baseboards and/or each other's tails, letting one or the other up into my lap (on a bar stool. While doing calligraphy. Yes, I am a total pushover and puppy dog eyes are a real thing).
Just this week I finally feel like I've got my head above water in that department, when the physical reality of working in retail for 30h/week descends upon me in the form of powerful nap attacks.
But I am not complaining! This is what life is, and I am so grateful for every moment of it. Especially the part where I am engaged to marry and be a lifelong partner to my favorite person. This is the part where I share part of what makes him just so perfect for me: he pretended via email to be a new client, requesting a wedding invitation design and quote from me. After a bit of email back and forth, later that evening this client provided the following "example" of what the invitation should look like .
It took me a few seconds of staring open-mouthed at the email before I thought to look up and ask Matt what in the actual heck was going on when I saw him walking across our kitchen to me with a small blue box in his hand. I promptly burst into tears.
I am going to admit that I was initially a bit disappointed not to be getting that new business. But I think I came out ahead. Plus, check out that man's Photoshop skills: