November 23, 2011

home | How to Live as a (temporary) Nomad

because I like to think I've mastered it a little...

1. yoga podcasts & yoga mat
(it's good exercise and good relaxation at the same time, AND portable)
 I've had a lot of requests for good podcasts and here are my two favorites to check out:
for extra awesomenss, play epic music in the background - I like either the Lord of the Rings pandora station or James Taylor (so similar, I know)

2. keep some things constant - like breakfast
I read somewhere that if you don't have to think about your morning routine, you feel much more relaxed going into the day and I think it's absolutely true.
My routine is making coffee in my french press, oatmeal with walnuts, seasonal fruit, and maple syrup, and reading for at least ten minutes.  If I have to wake up 20 minutes earlier to make this happen, I've found that it's worth it.   Things that make this tradition better? Other morning people to share it with, like my friend Lizzie (with popovers, below):
Burlington, VT

3. have something you can "decorate" wherever you are
my mom gave me a teeny vase that I take and put one flower in everywhere I go
I also have a framed photo from my last birthday with me and my tribe of women, and a little one of me and my family.  I just pull them out and put them on the dresser wherever I am and it feels just a little bit more like home.
from anthropologie home

4. get a cell phone charger for your car
I know it seems ridiculous, but I am finally one of those people who needs my phone to operate efficiently.  and because I spend too much time in my car moving from place to place, the car phone charger has let me not worry about using up battery playing surgery podcasts (lectures) on long commutes while also GPS-ing directions to and from new places; boring, maybe, but seriously life changing.

5. stay in touch
I do this by a combo of calling people (especially in between things), making dates whenever I'm in town, email and this blog
Pittsburgh, PA
Pittsburgh, PA
Burlington, VT
Santa Cruz, California

6. reflect often
get a journal, start a blog, go on long walks and 
just think about where you are and where you're headed
Scarsborough, ME

7. get oriented (aka bring your running shoes)
or, if it's more your style, walking shoes.  Nothing like jogging around to get oriented to new places
Wildwood, NJ

8. know your belly
this way when you go somewhere new and make the inevitably crazy first grocery store run, you don't spend a million bucks on things you won't actually eat.  some of my staples include breakfast food (see #2) veggie burgers, beans, tortillas, cheese, salsa, fresh spinach, frozen broccoli
(and of course the assorted local cuisine, as seen below)
Santa Cruz, California

9.  create a tradition
not forever, but just for that place.  Find a coffee shop you like and make it your study spot, go for a long run every Thursday in the park, do yoga on the tennis court on sunday mornings, watch old movies in bed on Wednesday afternoons when everyone else is working and you're post-call, grab coffee with a specific friend every Saturday morning (or mimosas, as seen below)
Burlington, VT

10. figure out what you can control and what you have to let go
for example, I have pretty little control over my schedule these days (hello call until 10pm last night and working 16 days straight) but some of the things I can control is wearing compression socks on long call days/nights so that my feet don't hurt or swell as much or that I always have almonds in my pocket in case I have to miss a meal.

what are your tips for living a life on the move?  
I rarely try to elicit comments from readers, but I would love to hear some for this one!
and for my less computer saavy readers (hey grandpa!), how to comment: go to the end of this post and find where it says "0 comments" in purple and click on it.  It should bring up a new window and you can just type in there.  

"Adventure is a path. Real adventure - self-determined, self-motivated, often risky - forces you to have firsthand encounters with the world. The world the way it is, not the way you imagine it.  Your body will collide with the earth and you will bear witness.  In this way you will be compelled to grapple with the limitless kindness and bottomless cruelty of humankind - and perhaps realize that you yourself are capable of both.  This will change you.
Nothing will ever again be black-and-white.
-Mark Jenkins


  1. Find a good storyline.

    Whether I'm watching my favorite TV show (my Virginia transplanting meant a third trip through all of the West Wing) or enjoying an excellent book (currently reading Lonesome Dove), feeling familiar with a cast of characters reminds me that Life can be cohesive, even when mine is not.

  2. Find a new favorite place (ie Tarrywile Park or Stew Leonards :), so you can be a regular, and so not everything in your life is new.