Sunday, January 22, 2012

Blog, blog, blog

Today, I was accused of not blogging enough by someone who hasn't blogged at all this year (*cough* Katy *cough*) So now I'm posting for no good reason at all, so I apologize to anyone else reading this (hi Mom!) because it's gonna be boring. To be fair, though, I don't have a tonne of time to blog I'm stupid busy with work and drum lessons and finishing up my last two courses and trying to be healthy.

EDP is currently away snowboarding in Austria with the same fellow we met up with in Vienna in the fall.  So far, it would appear that he is still in one piece. Which is good, because as I pointed out to EDP, he's worth way more alive to me than dead. And I don't mean that in a sentimental, lovey-dovey way. I mean in a purely monetary way. I'm not the beneficiary on ANYTHING at all and he pays the rent around here. I had hoped to use this as an opportunity to finish off getting rid of 101 things.  As of right now, I'm at 68 things. Earlier today, I was around 60, I think? I'm actually way past 101 already but I tend to forget to mark down my ticks or I count a whole bunch of stuff as only one or two things. I purged and organized our second floor a few weeks ago but I've lacked the energy/motivation to do the other floors. But, we could move RIGHT NOW and I'd pack and take every single thing on our second floor. Which is pretty good, if you ask me.

Speaking of moving, we've started a semi-serious search for a house. Yesterday, Tracey (our realtor) took me on a grand tour of a bunch of places that are currently on the market. And I definitely fell in love with one. It's a century home, which is what EDP and I both long for. Sadly, it got an offer late last week so it's probably not going to work out for us. Though, the offer is conditional on sale of property so it could still fall through. So that kept me pretty busy yesterday.

And then, today, I've been a cleaning MACHINE. I did the entire house, tossing a few more things here and there and blaring a bunch of Rolling Stone's Top 500 songs. I'm listening to Bohemian Rhapsody (#163) right now.

Oh, and for all you nosy Parkers (this post is currently the third most popular on my blog), I'm embarking on one of Things I haven't divulged this week.  I guess I technically started it last week but the real work starts this week. Though, if you're my Mom, Amy or EDP, you know what it is.

And now, it's off to Shoppers where they have toilet paper for half price. EDP can't stop me buying half a dozen packages when he's in Austria!!!

P.S. Bohemian Rhapsody is now over and I've moved on to Folsom Prison Blues but it appears to be some kind of dance remix.

Saturday, January 14, 2012

How goes sticking to that completely realistic exercise schedule, you ask?

Not good, let me tell you.

Now look - I knew that I wouldn't make the schedule and then follow it to the T for the next thirty days.  I knew it would take a while.  So stop giving me that judgy look.

I made it to approximately Day 3 before falling off the wagon.  A few days later, I got back on and promptly fell off again the very next day and I've remained off since then.  Let's recap, shall we?

I made my schedule on a Thursday.  Thursday, all I have to do is take Penny to the dog park (because I have class on Thursday nights so I'm not home for her evening walk.)  I managed that without a problem. Friday is my "crash and burn day" because Wednesdays and Thursdays are so long and busy for me so the only thing on Friday is a half hour walk with the dog.  I managed that no problem.  Saturday is TAC at the gym in the morning and then a half hour walk with Penny at night.  I managed both of those things. Sunday is where it fell apart.  I could barely move.  So while I did get Penny to the dog park and for her half hour walk in the evening, between EDP's knee (he hurt it a while ago and is undergoing some physio on it) and my complete and utter failure of basic muscle control, we didn't play squash.  I was going to give myself a free pass on that one if I made it to hot yoga on Monday but I didn't (though I think Penny got her half hour walk.)  Tuesday is another light day - just a half hour walk with Penny but I'm pretty sure that didn't happen - maybe EDP took her or maybe I didn't make it the whole half hour?  I can't remember.  Wednesday came around and the plan was a yoga class at 6:15 am at the gym but that didn't happen.  I can't remember about Penny's half hour walk, either.  But Thursday, I did get up and did the 6:15 yoga class that I plan to get to when I don't make it on Wednesday.  But I didn't get Penny to the dog park - it was miserable out.  I figured I could give myself a pass for that one too but then last night came and it was four hundreds kind of miserable so the walk was certainly not a half hour.  And today, I didn't go to TAC.  So I'm definitely back to Day 0 of sticking to my schedule.  In theory, tomorrow is the dog park and a squash game with EDP.  I'm optimistic both will happen.

HEY!  Don't laugh - it's rude and I can hear you.

Saturday, January 7, 2012

Who's stupid idea was being healthy?

Earlier this week, I made a completely realistic exercise schedule.  Thursday, January 5 was my first official day of sticking to it.  Today is my third day and I don't think I'll need to worry about sticking to it for a month because I'm pretty sure it's going to kill me first.

There's this class at the gym called TAC Physique. The description on the website is "TAC Physique is a muscle conditioning based class that was created by 2 professional ballet dancers on how they train to stay in shape, it is a full body workout with emphasis on your butt (it will be burning)!" I don't like using free weights or the machines at the gym so this is what was suggested for my strength component. I added it to my schedule as a weekly thing and today was my first attempt.

Honestly, I thought I was going to collapse. Now that I'm home, I feel like jello. My knees keep buckling under me as I walk. I'm not sure I can get my arms over my head to take my t-shirt off. I've put some Baileys in my coffee in hopes it dulls the screaming in my muscles. I can't even remember all the stuff that we had to do but I remember weights and balancing on my toes a lot.

To stick with my exercise schedule for a month means four more of these classes. Scientifically speaking, there is a 75% chance of my knees literally collapsing under me, leaving me in a puddle on the ground sometime over the next four classes. Since I'm clearly a weak, weak little girl, if I collapse there is a 57% chance of me never getting up again. So, as you can see - I'm mostly likely to die before the end of my month. But we'll see how it goes.

Thursday, January 5, 2012

I'm such a cliché...

It's the new year.  And what's the first thing I decide to do? Make my realistic exercise schedule. Just like 90% of the rest of the world...

However, tackling this now is actually a really good idea, though, there is a possibility it's the worst idea I've ever had. I'm back in class this term - two nights a week. This means I'm not home until 10:30 twice a week and I've got school work to do on top of my drum lessons/practice. Making a schedule (and following through with it) is likely the only way I'll ever get my ass to the gym in the next twelve weeks. But I'm stupidly busy for the next twelve weeks so is it realistic to think I've got time for this? I guess time will tell.

Anyway.  I've made a schedule. It's for a week. It's in an Excel doc. It includes more than just exercise - it also includes three and a half hours of drum practice, one hour for my drum lesson, six hours for class, seven hours of school work, and both mine and Penny's exercise.  Penny's exercise is in the form of a minimum of a half hour walk every day. The exception is Thursday when I'm going to try to get her to the dog park in lieu of the 30 minute walk in. She's also getting scheduled for a trip to the dog park at least once a weekend. I do worry about her getting overweight so based on some research I tried to do, this should keep her in line. For me, I've got four trips to the gym - one for hot yoga, one for regular yoga, one for something called TAC, and one for a game of squash. The yoga is for flexibility and a bit of strength building, the TAC is for strength and muscle conditioning and the squash is for cardio. Balancing these and making them a regular part of my routine was the goal for this Thing so I'm considering this done.

Now it's time to stick to it for a month.  Wish me luck.  Or harass me via Twitter.  Both are welcome.

Sunday, January 1, 2012

New Thing 90: Graduate

Before you get all concerned for my ability to succeed in life, don't worry.  I'm not talking about high school.  Or even university.  Well, wait, I am talking about university.  But for the second time, not the first.  I got my OSSD and my BCom (Hons) in the normal, traditional way.  You know - by skipping class to do other more interesting things and then pulling all nighters to finish projects and cram for exams.  But then I finished school.  And I missed it.  So I started another degree at University of Waterloo.  And that's the one I plan on finishing.

Originally, I had not planned on putting graduating on my list because I wasn't sure if it was feasible to finish by the end of 2013.  I started a BA in Liberal Studies a few years ago because I like learning.  Then I switched into Philosophy because I really enjoyed the PHIL courses I took.  And then, I realized that I really do want to get my masters in library sciences.  So I switched into the honours program so that I could earn an academic honours degree (and partly because when I saw my advisor, she asked why the heck I wasn't in the honours program yet and practically started writing my application for the UW Masters of Philosophy program.)  My BCom isn't considered academic - it's a professional degree - and the Canadian schools that offer library sciences don't believe I have the necessary research skills to be successfully in their programs.  So I settled in for a long haul to get my BAH.  While I did that, I got distracted and got a certificate in Project Management which has delayed my progress a bit.  However, I'm now at the point that I've taken all the online courses I can and I've pretty much met all the requirements except for the three 400 level courses and the overall number of PHIL courses I need.  I'm also very quickly running out of night classes.  And 400 level courses are only ever offered during the day.  Add all this together, and you get a flashing neon sign that says "You're going to need to go back for a full-time term!!"

Is that ever going to happen?  Unlikely.  So it was time to think creatively.  And now I have.  The United States of America.  South of the border, there are at least a dozen schools that offer a completely online masters program.  Several of them are very good schools.  And the best part - you don't need an honours degree.  You don't even need an academic degree.  You just need a degree.  Add all THIS together and you get a new neon sign that says "You might be a moron if you continue the honours degree.  Settle for a three- or four-year general and get the hell out of Dodge..."  And when I sit and check degree requirements, not only can I accomplish this by the end of my 1001 days but I *might* be a 2012 graduate.

How will I know I'm done?
Another framed degree on my wall.

How am I doing?
Degree conferred on October 20, 2012 but confirmation of it obtained August 6, 2012, read about it here.

December 31 2011 Recap

Oh, December... Where did you go?! I wasn't planning on getting a lot accomplished this month but I feel like I made pretty much ZERO progress on most of my things. I didn't do anything to actively finish my of my Things, but my orchid did make it to the six month mark so that got crossed of the list. As far as the things that I've got in progress...
  • My handwritten letter went in the form of Christmas cards. I think we sent about 30 so that's good enough for me.
  • Drum lessons kept going and I feel like I'm making some good progress. I got a music stand for Christmas so I'm no longer taping my exercises to the drums so I will obviously be able to make fantastic progress now.
  • I  apparently forgot to log any extra walks Penny & I took so our official number of kms walked remains unchanged from November.
  • I ended December (and 2011) with only 48 books on my TBR pile.  It's up slightly from November but I got a few books for Christmas so that's somewhat expected.
  • I made an easy chicken noodle soup yesterday, taking my new recipes total up to 18. 
  • I've listened to 100 of the Rolling Stone's Greatest 500 Songs.
  • I have no recollection of this but I donated a bit of rice this month, bringing my total up to 31,190 grains donated.  
  • We ordered Chinese food a few days ago from a place we had tried before that seemed promising.  We added lo mein to our order and it was awful so I'm officially striking that place from the short list.  
  • The best progress I made this month was on getting rid of 101 things.  The official count is now at 41 but I've been pretty bad at remembering to add a tick to the post-it when something gets tossed. 
And finally, I've decided to make my first substitution of one of my Things. I really wanted to sit my Grade 8 RCM piano exam by the end of my 1001 days but I've decided that I don't think I'll be able to make the time to do this properly. I'm really rusty on my theory and I don't think I could get up to the point I need to be without at least a year of intensive preparation. I don't have 2 hours a day now to devote to it and I don't see things drastically changing in the next two years so I'm officially taking this off the list. What will I replace it with? Graduating. This is something that initially been on my list but I took it off for some really good reasons. But as expected, things have changed and I'm confident I'll be able to get this done before the end of December 2013.  Wanna read more about this one?  Go for it.

Anyway. That's December. In January, I hope to knock a couple of things off the list. If all goes well, 101 things will have been purged from the house and I think it's time to really buckle down and get through that book on learning how to use the Mac. Aside from that, I don't have anything 

Thing 54: Play squash at least once a week for 6 months

A few years ago, EDP took me to play squash for the first time.  Surprisingly, I liked it.  We've played since, though we're really inconsistent about going.  It's a great workout, though, so I want to play more regularly. Like, maybe once a week?

How will I know I'm done?
I'll have an entry of "Squash" each week in my calendar for six months. The once a week thing won't be super strict - this is more about creating a habit to play regularly.  But I'll be able to look back at the previous six months and say "Hey, yeah, we played about once a week!"

How am I doing?
So far, no progress.