Jan. 12, 2013.
I have awakened to declare this Saturday on the calendar a "Me Day."
Me. Me. Me.
We all need one of those every once in a while, I think you would agree, to recharge our batteries and renew ourselves for whatever comes next.
It would be a day of no rendering onto Casear, even though I would be attending the Steubenville Saddle Club's annual awards banquet that evening to take photos and write a story for the newspaper, but since it involved horses and horse people, that hardly counts as work in my book. I was happy to go.
I got up early on this Saturday to savor the day, since sleeping in would actually make me a little mad at myself.
As much as I like to snooze, I view sleeping in on a Saturday as a day-robber, leaving me with less time to do all that I want to do for me, me, me.
It's a warm winter day.
I don't know what it's like today as you're reading this, but last Saturday was a January gem as the thermometer flirted with 60 before it was all said and done.
I am loving the me time.
I have my morning coffee in the quiet of this new day, three or four cups to properly caffeinate me for the descent to the basement for Joy No. 1.
I will wash the Kiaskimobile.
Certainly everyone's interpretation of having some quality me time doesn't translate into washing a car, but it sure works for me.
I had mentioned to Better Half my intent the night before. He made that "why bother" face. I shushed him.
No matter the forecast, I assured him, I am washing the car, a dirty overcoat on wheels I can no longer bear to don.
Step away from the woman with the hose, bucket and sponge, and no one gets hurt.
I drink in the finished result with delight.
The car clean, a final cup of joe enjoyed, it's time for Joy No. 2.
I scrounge for my jogging clothes, an outfit more functional than fashionable - my faithful tennis shoes, old scruddy black sweatpants with a white paint stain from a past project, Better Half's red U.S. Marine Corps sweatshirt and a red bandanna.
Off on my snow-free route I go, grateful for the friend that jogging has been for me through the years.
I think of songs, say a few prayers, commit the morning's Bible verse to memory or realize at some points with a level of amused surprise that I've actually entertained no thoughts at all.
Back home, I can feel the endorphines kick in and catch a whiff of the wet puppy smell a good workout delivers.
I sit in outdoor weather comfort on the front porch steps with my dog Lucy at my side, contemplating what's next.
And I think I'm ready.
"This is the day that the Lord has made. Let us rejoice and be glad in it."
(Kiaski, a resident of Steubenville, is a staff columnist and features writer for the Herald-Star and The Weirton Daily Times and community editor for the Herald-Star. She can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.)