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The commitment to exercising four days a week, an hour each day, plus two sessions of weights atop that, is requiring shifts of time and energy and attention. But thus far I am managing. I am using the most basic of reward structures for myself: every time I go to the gym, I get a gold star sticker! Because I never really left second grade.

Already Pretty does a weekly roundup of health/beauty/body image links. I find this week's assortment particularly good, but one (as with The Greening of Gavin's "buy nothing new for a month" challenge) left me somewhat befuddled. Rosie Molinary's All Natural Day (October 18th and 19th) is, I suppose, a wonderful idea. In theory. In practice. Unfortunately, I cannot participate in this special no-lotions-no-potions-no-perfume-no-makeup thing. Why?

Because I don't use any of these products to begin with.

I literally cannot remember when I last used makeup or hairspray. Probably the last time I cosplayed. (IE, years ago.) My mother does not use these products either, so I was never trained in girlhood or adolescence to use them or believe them an indispensible part of one's daily care routine. I thus find their use generally arcane, ephemeral, and annoying. And not once in my entire life has anyone ever said to me "Oh, you'd look so pretty if you would just use a little bit of [insert makeup product here]." So... I have no idea how I feel about the fact that apparently not using these items is a challenge to be put forth to some women.

Under "Things that make me happy": the cast list for Thor 2 has been announced. Kat Dennings is on it. Yay for more fan favorite character Darcy Lewis!
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Pulled weeds, pulled corn. Another week with the yard waste bin full and going to the city's composting program. Certain things I leave to them because they compost on an industrial scale with chippers and grinders and stuff, which I cannot.

Planted a half-dozen jalepeno plants on the side walkway where I pulled the weeds (grass and morning glories). It gets morning sun there, and while half the flowers (I'm not remembering the type/name ATM) my mom gave me to plant there didn't do well (four are still alive and blooming!), the volunteer mystery pepper plant has gone gangbusters. I'm hoping other pepper plants might as well, so for less than $3 I'm giving them a shot.

Went to the gym. Twelve minutes of pure exhausting pain on the elliptical of evil whose sensors are shot, then a more reasonable twenty-five minutes on the bike. Then upstairs to the weight machines, where I went through my repetoire except for the "dorsal flexer" (if I'm deciphering April-the-trainer's handwriting correctly), which someone else was on. Then back downstairs and waiting for Wonderful Husband to finish his bike time so he could hold my feet down for the side-to-side core flex sets, and ten situps. I cannot do situps or anything abs related without something/one to keep my feet down. Fail!Me.

Now to rifle through the fridge for dinner, hang that last set of shelves, and then have the pleasure of actually, finally putting DVDs on them. ^_^
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Closet doors put back on! Unfortunately, the front door decided to be... difficult. And in the process of putting it back on the rails, it scratched up the paint on the back door.

Insert unpronounceable keyboard mash of frustration here.

Wonderful Husband is suggesting a touch-up in place at a future date. Since I'm guessing that taking it off, sanding it down, repainting, and then hanging it again will only lead to the same problem, take 2, I'm amenable to this. Just not today.

After door hanging was done, we went to the gym for the first time in months. I ventured, for the first time, into the pool area and swam for about fifty minutes. Wheee-oo, they sure don't stint on the chlorine! I showered after getting out, and I still reek of the stuff. But since most of the machines are out due to calcaneal spurs, it's either that or the weights. (The weights, incidentally, are directly above the pool. Which makes for some very disturbing thuds and bangs coming from the ceiling of the pool room....)
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Recently tossed another four albums onto my Fake!Pod. Have concluded that while, unsurprisingly, the Run Lola Run soundtrack is fantastic gym music, Lady Gaga, like most boy bands, is a skip-half-the-tracks-for-a-decent-workout phenomenon.

My writing teacher had the release party for her newest book today, so I went to that and bought a copy (physical, though Amazon only seems to have the Kindle edition, odd...) and had fun chatting with my classmates for a couple hours. Wonderful Husband went off to an all-day board game meeting, so upon returning home I took care of a few other things, then set to work on the silk petticoat. Only one seam left to gather, pin, and sew, then it's done!
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This morning, I went to the Farmer's Market and a couple of estate sales with my new(ish) coworker, who is somewhere around my own age. She's very talkative and extroverted, which is kind of the opposite of me; I only get chatty around people I'm comfortable with. It was okay; I kind of feel like she wants a little too much to be friends with me, and I don't know why. I'm not a particularly engaging person.

I've started on a deep-cleaning of the kitchen, which really needs it. (The whole house needs it, but one room at a time.) The long counter is now looking much better; I just have to do the rest of everything. Also, rescued a lizard from Paris. She is now 3 for 0 this year. Sushi needs to work hard to catch up!

Saw The Lorax at the $2 theater. It was a little heavy-handed on the "hey, this is an environmental movie! in case you missed that!", but overall not bad. I did tear up toward the end. And somehow the Lorax's tack reminded me a little of Adam, toward the end of Good Omens: the only way people are going to learn not to kill whales, is if they have to deal with dead whales.

Went to the gym (612 calories burned! most of which while watching Britney Spears music videos, which were preferable to Faux News on another screen) and used probably the last of the garden-grown snow peas in a quite yummy stir-fry for dinner. And now, bed....
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Had an hour of dance class yesterday morning, then gym'ed yesterday evening (501 calories burned) and this evening (600 calories burned). I am Being Virtuous.

I purchased cucumbers and beets (among other things) at the farmer's market yesterday, with the intent of pickling them. Separately! Since I'm on my last jar of dill cucumber pickles from last year, and good pickled beets are pricey. But it's late, so pickling's going to be finished tomorrow night.

I saw the hummingbird take another bath in the fountain yesterday, so I half-filled the hummingbird feeder this morning and set it out. I hope the ants don't discover it as they have in years past. I've also been keeping an eye on what other birds are in the yard. There's this pair of horrible raucous bluejays I suspect have a nest in one of our trees. They keep dive-bombing the cats. I have informed the cats they have open season on them. There are also a trio of goldfinches, and a trio of a smaller blue bird I haven't identified yet. I feel like I should find a book, Birds of Orange County, or something. For now the internet is sufficing.

I dug amendments into one of the long fence beds today, moving all the walking onions down to one end in the process. Also switched the hose around so now all the beds have their connector ends down the center aisle. Simplifies things. One, maybe one and a half beds left to go. Just as well; I'm down to 2/3 of a trashcan of compost, and Wonderful Husband is starting to make noise about harvesting some out of the bins, and I haven't anyplace else to store it while it cures.
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Corn, round 2 (Stowell's Evergreen variety) now in the ground, along with cucumbers and a couple of Vanilla Ice melons. As I was finishing up putting things in the dirt, I turned around and there, in the water bubbling up from the finial of the garden fountain, was a hummingbird busily bathing itself. OMG so cuuuuuute~! I watched it for a few minutes and even called Wonderful Husband out to take a gander. I think this weekend I shall pull a hummingbird feeder out of the cabinet and set it in the garden....

Also, 572 calories burned at the gym. It was crowded tonight, but I didn't end up having to wait more than a minute for any of the machines I wanted, so it worked out well.
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Wonderful Husband (who is distinctly not a morning person) has been getting up at 5am this week to go to the gym. This is on the theory that it'll be less crowded than in the evenings (patently untrue) and that since he feels more awake after exercising, it's better to put it at the beginning of the day instead of the end.

Monday and Tuesday I did not go with him. This did not work well because after waking up at five, I couldn't get back to sleep. Part of this was due to the cats thinking that if one person was up, obviously the other was as well, so why wasn't I feeding them already? And when I did get back to sleep, it was disturbed.

So this morning I went with him. We'll see how I feel later.

Last night, however, after dinner we went to the Kinokuniya in the same shopping center as WingNuts. They didn't have a couple of things I was looking for, but they did have all three volumes of Otoyomegatari, the newest manga by the author of Emma. So I grabbed them and was happily carrying them around looking for other things, when Wonderful Husband pointed out the first couple volumes translated. In nice hardback editions with dust covers.

And while he will read the occasional untranslated manga (namely, Yokohama Kaidashi Kikou, which has never been translated and has very little dialogue anyway), it's a rare thing.

So we left the store with the first translated volume of A Bride's Story, and it is exquisite. I don't count manga toward my annual reading total, but this very definitely gets a verdict of highly recommended.
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As with yesterday, it feels like I didn't accomplish much. But the roses out front are pruned, as is the monster rosemary bush. Sunflower seed bread got made, and the oven is heating for roast chicken for dinner. We went to see The Muppets, which was surprisingly complex for a kids' film, and went to the gym during the Superbowl. It was brilliant - there were maybe a dozen other people there. And the halftime show (very sparkly) was showing on four screens. I also caught the Ferris Bueller commercial just before we left, so I'm happy.

Tidbits

Feb. 3rd, 2012 09:04 pm
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Went to the gym tonight for the first time in probably two months! 600 calories lighter!

Started in on a new book: The Land of Painted Caves, the (at last! finally!) sixth and ultimate book in Jean M. Auel's "Earth's Children" series. By three pages in I was understanding the Amazon reviews and yelling at the author for bad writing. My god, Maralys and my classmates would smack me down so hard for doing what I've already read here.

Spent part of yesterday rereading Deus Ex Machina and Summer Job. Have made more notes for myself about what the hell I actually want to be happening in DEM; it's very jumpy right now because I hadn't figured out everything I wanted out of it when I started. Which sometimes works, but not this time, I think. Listened to the score for the first film at the gym, and kind of feel like I should rewatch the first two films to find my center and voice for the tale before diving back in.
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Mrah. Went out to the garage to check the oil level in my car and ended up reassembling the sewing machine. It's... better than it was. After the application of lubricant and heat. But it's still not working. Dragged Wonderful Husband out for a consult, and we think it's the section in the bottom that I couldn't disassemble to soak in Evapo-rust that's causing the problems. Solution is to measure the machine and find/purchase a plastic tub that will let it sit upright in Evapo-rust. We popped into Ganahl Lumber today and found some nice 1/4" plywood that will probably do to refinish the top of the treadle. Just needs staining and cutting to size.

I have also ended up buying a Singer 66 with somewhat faded red eye decals. It's rusty, but it was $10. Will see what I can make of it, after I get the 15 working.

I think I've finally reached the point of detachment where I can probably let go of both of the Touch 'N' Sew machines I inherited from my grandmothers. Neither has worked for years, and while I now have the money to get them repaired, it'll still be expensive (~$300 each) and given that it would be replacing plastic gears with plastic gears, I'm not sure it would be worth it. One of them goes in a small sewing desk that we have by the front door holding up an ivy plant and sheltering our shredder. The other is in a fairly substantial sewing desk that I would keep.

Thing is, I wonder if my getting into vintage sewing machines was a bad thing. Because it seems to be leading me toward avarice. There are two particular pieces I want at the moment, and while they're both relatively affordable, it comes down to the issue of space and use. This cabinet is one of them, and this chain stitch machine is the other. I want these two pieces very much, and the thing is, while I can afford them, that doesn't mean I should get them.

So I spent my time at the gym tonight meditating on want and Buddhist philosophies of detachment. I haven't come to any conclusions save that I enjoyed watching Pretty Woman (on one screen) much more than the Kiera Knightley version of Pride and Prejudice (on another screen). I did confirm, however, that a half hour on the elliptical machine leaves the soles of my feet feeling like I've been walking on knives. I only went to the gym twice last week, and am only ending up going twice this week, so I need to kick the calorie expenditure higher than usual, which the elliptical will do. (Ended up burning 650-ish.)
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Should have gone to the gym on Thursday as well, but did not. I've switched up the last two days, doing treadmill first and bicycle last, instead of the other way around, and I think I'm going to keep it that way. It's an easier warmup and easier to get to my 500 calories burned minimum.

It's odd - I like the bike least, but I think Wonderful Husband likes it the best, and I like the treadmill best, but he likes it least. He actually skipped the treadmill tonight and did a half hour each, since the gym was pretty empty, on the elliptical and the bike. I find twenty minutes on the elliptical hard enough; I end up feeling the grip lines abraded into the soles of my feet. Another ten is, at this point, beyond me.

Yesterday Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull was playing while I exercised, so I watched that for an hour. It's totally the weakest of the four films, but it still has a few good moments. I think Transformers has ruined me for seeing Shia in anything else, though. He's a good actor, but I just keep seeing Sam when I look at him. Maybe I'll get past it in a few years.
sakon76: (Ahiru and Fakir)
Start: 125686
Finish: 127011
Daily Total: 1325
Monthly Total: 18295

Next to last plot point hit; one more to go. And I've listed out the remaining scenes I need, and from whose point of view they should be. Four more scenes. Only four, and then it's done! But not tonight, because I have work in the morning.
sakon76: (Ahiru and Fakir)
Start: 124470
Finish: 125686
Daily Total: 1216
Monthly Total: 16970

Went to the gym today, as I was bad and didn't go last night. Also helped Wonderful Husband fix and hang our exterior Christmas lights. Debating whether or not it's kosher to have them on in the evenings now, or if we should wait until December 1st. Hit one plot point I'd forgotten in today's writing, but still have the last two to work in. Close. So very close to the end....
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Some days, it's just impossible to go fast enough/work out hard enough. Either that or the machines at the gym are mocking me. Difficult to tell.

Grimm )
sakon76: (Default)
Yesterday morning I did a run of five estate sales and four thrift stores. I spent a grand total of $7. ^_^;; I can't decide if that means the shopping Force was with me or not. I was very amused at the one sale where everything in the entire house was new. Agressively new. Even the stuff out in the (carpeted) garage, which is where people usually keep old/junky claptrap. It gave me a little insight into why Old Money families traditionally look a bit askance at the Nouveau Riche.

The blood pressure machine at Rite-Aid said my BP was 127/79. So I'm within spitting distance of acceptable, and I haven't even been watching my sodium intake recently! (Wonderful Husband took his right after me and his numbers were ~20 lower for both systolic and diastolic. Grr. I must do better.) I suspect going to the gym (546 calories burned last night!) is helping.

Once Upon A Time )

Thundercats )
sakon76: (Default)
There's a very odd confluence of reality when you're listening absently to NKOTB at the gym and a cop show comes on and you realize it's the one Donnie Wahlberg is in. (For the record? Blue Bloods was actually pretty good.)

We watched the third episode of Once Upon A Time earlier, while we were eating dinner. The sheriff is definitely the huntsman. And Emma definitely got her toughness from her mother. (Though, a comment to the writer(s) of the last episode: liking cinnamon on your hot chocolate is NOT a genetic trait!) Though that really makes me sad upon reflection, because as long as she was single, Snow was kick-ass. Then she got married and pregnant and all of a sudden she was emotional and conflicted and dependent and by the time she hits the real world she's a total milquetoast. In the first episode I loved her being the one to draw the prince's sword when the wedding was interrupted by the Evil Queen; I can't imagine Mary Margaret Blanchard doing any such thing.
sakon76: (Default)
Got home and the house smelled wonderfully like Christmas pudding. Not being happy with our stockpot and its steamer insert, Wonderful Husband co-opted both of my canning pots (water bath and pressure) and used them to steam the two puddings instead. So now they get covered up and tucked away (probably in the back bedroom since it's (1) little-used, (2) cat-proof, and (3) the coldest room in the house) for the next month and ten days. Then, while I was washing up the dishes from his first round of endeavors, he mixed up the Christmas cake, which will be going in the oven momentarily.

Also, odd note from my last gym session: being a bit worn out on Elv1s and Daft Punk's Discovery album, I cast about my fake!Pod to see what else we had ripped from CD. *NSync's Celebrity album is pure suckage for the gym, but NKOTB's Hangin' Tough is actually not too bad.

And, finally, I found one of my plastic tubs which will fit the Singer sewing machine in it in most configurations (sitting right-side up, sadly, being the one it won't do; it's too long for the tub), and poured a gallon and a half of EvapoRust in with it. The machine has been sitting with its neck down for a couple of days, since that's where most of the internal corrosion is; I'm tilting it back and forth a couple ways so all the parts get a good soak. Then I'll do the head, let it all drain, and go back to seeing if I can get it to unfreeze.
sakon76: (Kitten)
Gym'ed Friday and today. Skipped Saturday, which I allowed myself because I had my last bellydance class until January that morning, so I got my sweat quotient in.

Wrote a bit on the novel this morning, and also realized that in Deus Ex Machina, there's been something I've been fighting against happening... and that I should just let it happen. NaNo wordcount:

Start: 117012
Finish: 117400
Daily Total: 388
Monthly Total: 8684

There is a stray cat I've seen around a couple times now. I know she (I think it's a she; it's a tortiseshell anyway, so I've been referring to her as Tortie because I am a master of the obvious) is a stray and not a feral because she doesn't do the disappearing thing whenever I get within twenty feet of her. She's in very rough shape, limps on one paw, and I worry that something is wrong with her eyes because they're mere slits. Today I saw her on our back patio so I gave her some dry cat food, which she started devouring even before I got back into the house. I kind of feel like I should rent a trap and take her to a vet or a shelter, but then what? For now, I guess, I'll keep feeding her when I see her and see how things go.

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