The right fit, Friday kudos, and wine for your weekend

About a week ago, I took my wedding/engagement set into the jewelers to have them look at it for maintenance. It’s a white gold ring, so it occasionally needs to be replated in rhodium to keep it look vibrant and sparkly. The back of my ring has become so worn the last few years, that the “white” is actually gone, and the pale yellow, the true color of ring“white” gold, shines through. This is, in part, because the rhodium coating naturally wears away over time, but also because I wear a spacer on the back of my ring to keep it from falling off. Why we never had it sized after we got engaged, or sized with my wedding band after we got married, I can’t remember. Maybe we were just lazy? In any case, the spacer has worked fine, though it does rub on the ring, and allow hand soap, lotion, sunscreen, etc. to get trapped against the ring, thus accelerating the deterioration of the rhodium.

The jeweler suggested that if I wanted to have it resized, doing it at the same time I had it replated was the way to go. That said, it would take longer, and they’d have to undo the soldering and redo the soldering of the bands, so if it wasn’t a drastic size change, I might consider just keeping the spacer on for now. (They also mentioned that sometimes women’s rings fit too tightly during pregnancy…I’m not pregnant, but thanks…so that I might consider wanting to keep it bigger!) After checking the sizing, it turns out my ring was over a full size too big. Oops! No wonder it always felt like I was going to lose it! As a full size off, yes, they recommended I definitely have the work done. And so I anxiously wait for my rings back, and wonder how different it will feel to have them fit properly, without the spacer, and without fear of them flying off at inopportune moments.

Later this week, I went in for my yearly eye exam. I can’t really say yearly. I’m more of a stretch-my-contact-prescription-as-long-as-I-can-before-going-back-to-the-eye-doctor kind of gal. This usually gets me to about a year and a half, two if I’m lucky. As they started running the tests, two things quickly became apparent. One, I was squinting. Two, I couldn’t see if I didn’t. At thirty years old, my eyes probably shouldn’t be changingEye-chart drastically, so I was a little disconcerted. (Though the doctor mentions that sometimes women’s eyes change during pregnancy…it’s been less than a week since the jeweler mentioned pregnancy, and I’m still not pregnant, but thanks…so if I’ve had a pregnancy, then it might be normal!) Then the tech asked me a question I wasn’t expecting and uncertain how to answer. Have I always squinted during my eye exams?

I initially thought, “of course not!” That would completely defeat the entire purpose of the eye exam. However, as I very instinctively began to squint at the next chart they put up, and the eye doctor caught me doing it, and stopped me, I began to think that perhaps I had. I am naturally an eager to please kind of person. When each chart came up, I found myself wanting to be able to tell the doctor that, yes, I could read the bottom line, and as a result was attempting to read it at any cost. In relaying the story to my husband later, he pointed out that the eye charts are, and have always been, a tool and not a personal challenge. Is it possible that for 16 years I’ve sabotaged my own ability to see clearly in an effort to appear like I was doing “better” on the eye test? It seems very possible. (It’s also possible that my astigmatism changed thus affecting my prescription and/or a combination effect of both.) Whatever the contributing factors, they sent me on my way with a brand new trial pair of contacts in a brand new prescription and WOW! I could see! I could see in a way I didn’t know people with glasses and contacts were supposed to see! I always just expected there to be some fuzziness in my glasses or with my contacts. But I can read roadsigns down the block! I can read highway markers before they’re 15 feet from the car! I can read the signs in Target above each department from across the store! And as I sit here now in my old glasses, anxiously awaiting the arrival of my full contact order and new frames, I wonder what else I’ll be able to see that I never realized I was supposed to be able to see, and why I never wondered about it before.

In both instances, I was living with a bad fit. In both instances, I was living with a bad fit that I recognized was a bad fit, and continued to tolerate anyway! Why? There are times when it’s appropriate to muddle through things, but there are also times when it’s fair to say this doesn’t fit anymore, and adjust accordingly. When I was in college, I changed my major because pre-law wasn’t a good fit for me anymore. A year later, my best friend switched universities because her original school wasn’t a good fit anymore for what she wanted to study. In my first teaching job, my principal told me that he predicted I’d leave after five years because I would outgrow my position and it wouldn’t feel like a good professional fit anymore. Though it was scary, I left after year three! When it comes to ring sizes and glasses prescriptions, a little bit of time, effort, and cash fixes a relatively easy problem. Yet, not every bad fit is an easy problem to fix. An unfulfilling career, a broken relationship, a lease that no longer makes sense, a toxic friendship, all can be bad fits that can be very scary to change. But I challenge you to look at where you might have some “bad fits” in your world, and question how you might improve or change them, even a little bit. Because as I’ve learned this week, changing something, even a little thing, can make all the difference in the world.

kudosFriday kudos to…

School admin
My week was wracked with chaos for a variety of reasons, and the main one played itself out over thirteen hours on Monday. By next Monday, it will be a distant memory and all will be well again. But I must give major kudos to the administrator that stepped up to help “put out the fires.” I know not everyone is fortunate to work in a place with top down support, but I am, and I recognize it, and I appreciate it!

The gINKgo project participants
I wanted ink. to become a community, and after a number of people reached out either publicly or privately this week to tell me they were going to join the efforts of the gINKgo project, it really feels like it’s becoming that! I thINK this is AMAZING, and I can’t wait to someday come across a gINKgo project note that I didn’t place myself! Kudos for taking up the cause. I’m excited for you and the people who will be touched by your notes!

If you want to know more about the gINKgo project, there is now a page on the homepage that gives information about what it is!   

My husband
Though he should get kudos every week, he gets an extra shoutout this week because he also had to deal with the aftermath of the aforementioned chaos (and by aftermath, here I mean ranting and wine drinking), and also because it was our anniversary. So that’s all cute and romantic and stuff!

Wine for your weekend!

Gnarly Vine Zinfandel – Monte Rosso – California
gnarly vineIn an earlier post this week I confessed my current love of Zinfandel. This is a product of the Zinfandel themed dinner party hosted by our dear friends in which we blind tasted three different Zins at three different price points, trying to identify the quality and identity of each. (Yeah, we’re super winos!) The Gnarly Vine Zinfandel was our “top” price point wine, but it’s not unreasonably priced if you’re looking for a quality Zinfandel for a special occasion, or you want to impress your family, friends, or date. You can find it retailed for $45-$60 a bottle

I’d summarize this wine myself, but in all honesty, we used the tasting notes for our dinner party experience, so whatever I had to say about it would just be summarizing the pros! “It’s a big, deep wine with intense aromas and a fusion of dark fruit flavors, including blackberry reduction and black currant. Those blend with layers of spice notes ranging from fresh black peppercorns to clove. The wine is full-bodied, vibrant and robust, balanced by velvety tannins and distinctive minerality that is characteristic of Monte Rosso’s iron-rich volcanic soils. The extraordinarily long and luxurious finish adds rich hints of vanilla and molasses. Robert M. Parker Jr. gave this wine 95 points and called it “a full-bodied classic Zinfandel at its very best.”


Published by Kate

A former Wisconsinite, Kate now resides in southeast Minnesota with her husband where she teaches high school English and theater. She recently completed her master's degree in learning design and technology, and continues to study and advocate for arts integration in the classroom. A recipient of the RISE America grant for high school theater, Kate is working to innovate and expand theater opportunities for the students at PIHS. An avid distance runner, concert pianist, and want-to-be wine aficionado, Kate's blog "ink." is a passion project, embodying all the best parts of life: friends, food, wine, thoughtful conversation, style, and sass!

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