It’s been quite awhile since I’ve personally shared some version of a good list, and I’m psyched we’re making this column a mainstay on AoS. I love reading (and listening to) other people’s Good Lists — so I’m happy to add my own current version!
1. A quirky produce delivery service.
I think I found out about Imperfect on Pinterest when I was searching recipes. Basically, this is a CSA-type service that delivers classically-imperfect fruits and veggies to your door, either weekly or bimonthly.
The thing is, they’re not really imperfect, they’re just less than ideal for conventional selling standards: a bit misshapen, too big or small, or what’s often the case — the farmers simply have too much inventory. Imperfect buys all this produce directly from the farmers (since they can’t sell it to stores), then creates this door-to-door delivery service for individuals.
We’ve only gotten two boxes so far (we’re doing the bimonthly plan), but it’s working out well so far! The produce is farm-fresh quality, we’re paying a good price, and we’re supporting farmers.
I’m a fan of automation when it helps me live according to my values, and CSAs are one of those ways. I’m also a major fan of using the curbside pickup service from my local grocery store — I hate grocery shopping, so avoiding this chore is worth the $5 pickup fee for me.
(Psst… If you sign up for Imperfect using this link, we’ll both get $10 in credit to our accounts. They’re not sponsors, I’m just a fan, and this is my customer referral link.)
2. Making time for hobbies
I’m trying to get better at this. Sometime last fall, it hit me: I’ll think about some sort of hobby I want to try, but then I’ll say, “One day, when I have more time.”
That day will never come. I need to simply enjoy a hobby now, no matter how full my life is. In fact, that’s part of the beauty of hobbies — they add a smattering of fun amidst the busy to-do lists and the mundane.
This year, I want to incorporate a bit more just-for-funness in my life, which is harder than it sounds; I’m the type of person who feels like everything I do should have some purpose to it. Is it some form of continuing education? Will it grow my business? Will it make me a better writer? Parent? Citizen? Insert the eyerolls to myself.
I need to relax about my life. So, I’ve started painting this silly paint-by-number kit on Sunday afternoons, and funny enough, I also want to become more of a Plant Lady this year. I used to have more indoor plants in my home, before I traveled all the time (so basically, in college). I miss that.
A few weeks ago I bought a near-impossible-to-kill ivy, and gave myself a hearty pat on the back. It serves no other purpose beyond making our home and myself happier. We’ll see how this goes.
3. Yes, Virginia, making mixtapes is a form of art.
I was that girl who recorded songs off the radio onto a tape in my boombox, trying desperately to time it just right to cut off the annoying DJ (it almost never worked). Later, in college, I burned mix CDs for friends, creating soundtracks for all sorts of things: parties, road trips, Here’s How I Feel About You.
Turns out, Spotify is exactly what I need to fill the void of mixtapes in my life, because curating playlists is a genuine diversion of mine. I love, love, love finding new artists and adding them to various playlists (and, of course, supporting their art by also buying their music).
Sometimes I’m tempted to overthink this, which is a bit ridiculous because we’re talking about mixtape playlists, not curing cancer. So for years now, I’ve started a new playlist at the start of each season, and will dump any song I love in the moment into its queue. I don’t arrange the flow so that it follows some sort of mood (I save that for my other playlists, like Hygge or They Make Me Cry). In these seasonal playlists, I just toss a song I love into the mix.
What’s fun is that I can go back and play that playlist, and it’ll take me back to the season I first heard that song, or decided I loved it, or for whatever reason, it meant something to me.
So, this is my form of art: curating playlists. If you’re curious, here’s my current Winter 2019 playlist.
4. Tracking the mundane.
For years I’ve wanted one of these line-a-day journals, and I finally remembered to get myself one last December: hurray, I can start a new year from the beginning!
So far, I’ve been logging the daily, somewhat uninteresting stuff about my day, and it’s slowly becoming a habit. I keep it on my nightstand, with a dedicated pen, and I make myself write in it before opening my current book.
I love that it’s literally about five skinny lines, max, so there’s hardly any room for much beyond what we had for dinner, what the weather was like, or one small highlight from the day. That’s the beauty of it: it’s just a quick check-in.
I know my future self will thank me for adding this habit into my routine — with it being a five-year journal, starting this year means the last year will be my daughter’s final year at home, as a high school senior (cue the sobs already). These are significant years for me. I don’t want to forget them.
So, there you go: these four things are just a few items on My Good List right now. I’d love to know one thing, big or small, making you happy right now! Share in the comments, if you like.
• Listen to the podcast episode for this post