Spring and Summer on the road

Countless times I’ve applauded myself for making the decision to buy a new car.  This time last year my old car was in its last legs.  Once the transmission went out I knew it was time to say goodbye and on June 5th I bought a 2014 Honda Civic, paid for in full.  Having a new car has paid for itself.  Its not just the comfort of knowing my car is reliable and won’t be in the shop every week and gets amazing gas mileage (37.2 mpg!). Its the comfort of knowing I can go anywhere in it, that it won’t be expensive. Thanks to a new car, I started taking more long trips starting last summer.  This spring and summer I anticipate even more.  Since I work in a really big city, it’s fairly easy to hop on the metro to go into DC now and explore.  I went to the Matsuri festival yesterday, but it was a disaster! Way too many people and rude ones at that. Just because its crowded doesn’t make it acceptable to not use your manners or push people in ‘your way’.  We were all happy to leave and explore less crowded areas after the Matsuri festival.  Next weekend I’ll be makingmy first return to my old city since I left a month and a half ago.  It’ll be wonderful to see friends again and participate in the 5K.   Outside of those, I’ll be going to Pennsylvania, Maryland and New York by the end of the summer. I’m especially excited to go to New York for the first time!  I’m going for a bridal shower for one of my best friends and we’re driving down together.  It’ll be a fun trip–I just wish we had more than three days there!  There’s also a convention in June I’m excited to go to and potentially another one in Maryland in August. I’ll be making a couple trips to see friends who live 1-2 hours away throughout the summer, so my car will, sadly, be racking up more miles.  Currently I’m staying with my grandmother who lives a little less than an hour away from where I work.  The commute isn’t ideal (saving money is) and I plan on doing it until July/August when I’ll have a few student loans gone and able to afford something with plenty of emergency savings at my disposal.  It’s crazy how expensive things are in Northern Virginia, even with a decent income.  I’m anxious to live on my own again, but at the same time,I look forward to a summer around friends and family I’ve missed a lot in the last 3ish years!   Are you planning any road trips this spring or summer?

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Emerging into Spring

It was two weeks ago yesterday that I officially moved back to my hometown. I’m still getting into the grove of being back home and in ways, I’ve forgotten about my life in my old city (not the friends of course, whom I talk to almost daily). My hometown has a very different atmosphere being that there are more cows & chickens that people (compared to never seeing them unless you drove miles out of town), not having many stores and the highlight of social engagement requiring a drive into a nearby city 30 minutes or more away. I work in the city, but I often find myself meeting up with friends there or making solo trips to stores and venues. If someone told me 4 years ago when I graduated college I’d be happy to be back in the boonies, I wouldn’t believe them. Yet, here I am and I’m happy to be here for a while.

(photo taken last year)

Spring (despite us getting snow Friday) is starting and the weather couldn’t feel more invigorating. There are Crocus’ coming up in yards and I’ve seen a few marigolds on my daily walk on my grandmother’s road. This is my favorite time of year and for once, I feel that having a slower paced life is offering me the opportunity to appreciate it a bit more! What I’m really looking forward to is the Cherry Blossom Festival in D.C. in 3 weekends. I go there with a group of four other friends every year to the Matsuri festival and to view the trees. It’s one of the things I look forward to the most every year!

Goong

Yesterday was gorgeous and I pulled out a book to read. Way back when, I used to read Manga and Manwha, a hobby that I recently wanted to get back into. I picked up Goong using store credit from a bookstore Friday and plan on trading in and out manga for the time being. When I applied for my library card in the city I work in, I discovered I need to live in the area to use it. Alas, all those books are just out of my reach!

 

I terms of gaming, I’ve been playing Final Fantasy V and Doctor Who Legacy. Final Fantasy V is a game I picked up in high school, but didn’t get through, but since it’s on my Ipad (meaning I can play it while watching Netflix), I’ll get through it pretty quick. I got my aunt into Sherlock and recently started watching Torchwood. I really like Russell T. Davies writing/creative direction, science fiction and Captain Jack Harkness is one of my favorite Doctor Who companions, so Torchwood is right up my alley.

068 (more Cherry Trees from last year)

My temporary relocation stuff is almost complete and I have a graduate school meeting tomorrow. I’ll be starting my Masters in Special Education in Spring 2016, so all I need to finish up is the paperwork and save up the money. I still have my undergraduate debt to deal with, but my Masters will only run my around $14,000. By living with family, I’m able to pay off huge chunks of my student loans and save up for my masters degree. I am still waiting on getting my rent deposit and first paycheck from my new job, but those will come at the end of the month. Moving and getting a new job was a big decision, but as time goes on, I know I made the right move and couldn’t be happier!

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Have you had any big changes in your life lately?