Both this stupid cancer and the treatment at times seem to rule everything in your day and night. Sometimes, though, you have moments when you appreciate the parts of your life that remain steady. My favorite things help me keep a stream of normalcy.
As long as I can remember, part of my daily ritual has included wearing a fragrance. The first time I went through chemo in 2004, though, I noticed that my chemistry changed, and my usual scents either lost their potency on me or just smelled off. I stopped using my favorite fragrances because I didn’t want to waste them nor did I want to negatively condition myself against them. I found, however, that I could wear some essential oils and started using them regularly. I choose different scents depending on my mood. Currently, I’m using a delightful mix of oils sent to me by one of my husband’s colleagues. I spray it on in the morning and throughout the day when I need a little lift.
Every day I write in one of my journals. I have several, and each of them has its own role and appeal. This yellow leather journal caught my attention when I first saw it because the pages are gilded in silver, and it has a flap that incorporates a pen holder. Of course, the paper inside, also happens to be fountain-pen friendly, though it does bleed a bit, making me write only on one side of the page. Still I love it and love writing in it. I can’t remember a time that I did not keep a journal.
The pen I am using with this journal currently is a white Pelikan® series 200 with an extra fine nib. It’s a favorite because I am very partial to Pelikan® fountain pens for many reasons, which I’ll share with you another time. I will just say that you can leave a Pelikan® loaded with ink, untouched for days, and the moment you post the cap and set the nib to paper, it writes perfectly every time. Of all the pens I have, my favorite has remained Pelikan®. Leave it to the Germans for outstanding engineering.
Of course, when you love fountain pens, you also develop an unstoppable need to collect inks. Most pen lovers have their favorite colors, and many are on a never-ending quest for an ink that possesses the best qualities for their unique style of writing with their favorite pens. It’s the clarity, the richness, the boldness of the color along with the drying properties and other factors that make an ink suitable for an individual’s style of writing. Anyway, I could write for days on this and will come back to the topic another time. The ink I’m using this week in this pen is Noodler’s® Georgia peach.
When I’m writing, I always like to light a candle. Maybe it’s the idea that writing by candlelight is romantic, even though I might be writing in perfectly good light. In any case, I always have a candle or two ready to light when I want to put pen to journal. Also, sometimes to regain my wandering concentration, I stop what I’m doing and focus on the flickering flame. It seems to help me get back on whatever track I fell off.
I love crystal and boxes, hence, the little crystal box that stays on my desk to keep little odds and ends like my pocket knife for cutting labels or paper and my favorite lighter for those candles.
Finally, I never go anywhere now without the last two important items: antibacterial hand gel and ginger. I had ordered some hand gel from Avon® and really like these little tubes. I like the texture of the gel because it’s not too drying and actually leaves my skin soft and smooth. I refill the little bottle I hang on my purse strap so I have it with me when I’m out shopping and touching a lot of surfaces. My favorite ginger fix is crystallized ginger. The sweet and spicy is a nice combination, and my tummy usually responds favorably to just one of these.
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