2021-03-02 In Like a Lamb?!… 🐑🔜🦁

March.. I think the saying is supposed to be “In like a lion and out like a lamb.” 

***

According to the Farmers’ Almanac, the weather folklore stems from ancestral beliefs in balance, meaning if the weather at the start of the month was bad (like a roaring lion), the month should end with good weather (gentle, like a lamb).

***

But what happens when March marches onto the scene like a gentle lamb? It’s Nebraska round here people and let me just tell you, when there’s not a lot going on (and there is often not) we get giddy talking about the weather. The buzz around town right now is about the potential for the temperature to break into the 60s and I’m just as excited as the next person. The 10 day extended forecast looks balls-out amazing and it fills me with joy thinking about the opportunities to get outside. 

But Again I ask, what happens after that? If the old farmers almanac saying is about balance, does that mean we’re in for trouble toward the end of the month? And should we forget so quickly that our beloved (and sometimes hated) furry friend Punxsutawney Phil saw his shadow on February 2nd securing the prediction of six more weeks of winter? 

Incidentally when I decided to get married on February 2nd. And mark my words… I am the one who decided and didn’t entertain much discussion about it. When I came up with that date, the fact that it was Groundhog Day (or the Super Bowl) didn’t even enter my mind. Now it’s a pretty good joke. I’m still happy with my decision even if that means I have to share my special day with a woodchuck with an over-inflated ego. I digress.

The change in the weather has the distinct ability to change people’s moods. I know I’m not alone in this. The drone of life through winter in the Midwest is long and boring. Endless strings of cold and overcast days can cause even the most positive and energetic human to feel as though hibernation is a good option. Though this might be good for Netflix and Hulu and Sling (Disney Plus, Apple TV, and Amazon.. good grief!).. it is NOT good for the human psyche and soul. 

The bright sunshine and it’s warmth are essential for fulfillment. I mean, obvi a person can survive without it, but it becomes tough to get to a place of positive energy and enlightenment. Seasonal depression is a real thing and there’s a reason Seattle, as hip as it is, is also kind of a depressing. 

I’ve visited Seattle twice and both times felt very “meh” about the town. And that’s after going to some really cool places! It just feels so monotone. Perhaps I was just there on grey days, but I think they have a lot of those.

***

I’m looking forward to today despite another 4:30am wake up. I said to Jim at the breakfast table this morning, “i don’t know what’s different between yesterday and today, but today just feels like it’s going to be good.” Can it really be the weather? 

As of right now everyone else is either at school or work and I have the house to myself. I’m finally catching up with myself in regards to the to-do list and don’t feel too pressed about deadlines. I received more feedback late yesterday from the publisher who will be publishing my debut chapbook. It wasn’t from my assigned editor so I think I must have submitted with the option to request feedback. 

Strange to get feedback after they’ve already accepted it. It was written as if the person wasn’t aware it had been accepted. Maybe this is just a larger publishing company and my manuscript is just being pushed around different channels based on how I submitted it. Who knows what happens behind the scenes?? 🤷‍♀️

I now also have the official contract in my hot little inbox just waiting for me to have the time to really read it thoroughly. I would like to give myself an hour where I will be completely free of distraction. Today would probably be the perfect day for that. It will also help me keep the positive mood going as thinking about this book is starting to really sink in and I’m over my anxiety and getting excited about it.

I still haven’t told too many folks about it. A handful really but I think after the contract goes through and it’s “official” I’ll begin being more public about it. Not that the money matters beans to me but the presale numbers dictate the percentage I’ll collect on the deal. I mean to say, money matters, but I never expected to make anything from “selling” poems or books. 

Thus far in my poetry career I’ve collected exactly $110 and that’s a fraction of what I’ve spent on submissions. If this poetry game we’re offered at a casino, the odds are so bad nobody would play. 😜

When I quit my job I had a few friends comment “now I could give my life to poetry.” How true.

I’m giving poetry my time, money, and effort (measured in brain cycles). Not to mention my heart and soul through the words on the page. When I said “take all of me poetry” it seems as though poetry was listening and decided to take me up on the offer. 

Ok. That’s enough of that. One more comment and then I have to git. 

I’m working with a new set of metrics this week to measure how I’m doing with certain health goals. Sunday I busted my ass to get 30 minutes of cardio in on the bike and apparently my heart rate never reached the “cardio” threshold. I clocked a ton of time in the “fat burn” zone according to FitBit. What the hell??!! Thanks FitBit. 

So now I’m spending cycles figuring out what activities get me into that cardio zone (above 121 bpm). Yesterday it was walking really fast on the treadmill, which is slightly less like hell than jogging. I think Jazzercise would do it, but I’m not doing that yet. I’ve thought about classes at the gym. That would essentially be something I could do without shelling out loads of cash because classes are free with my membership, 

Anyhow. We’ll see how this week goes. 

Cheers to the anti-taco Tuesday,

~Miss SugarCookie

2021-03-01 Welcome to New Beginnings…

Where was I at again? A new week? A new month? A fresh start? Oh yeah.. that. 

So far so good and pretty soon now both my kids will be home and all will be right with the world again. 

It was 2:45PM before I looked at what I was supposed to do today according to the almighty to-do list and no surprise that not a single one of those things has been done. I’m still working on my Sunday list and progress is slow. 

I also forgot about all my new metrics for the day.. sort of on purpose to see how I do naturally. I did go to bed “on time” last night so if all else fails, at least I have that. 

My whole day today has been a fast moving train of dirty dishes, grocery shopping, and really just putting away all the random things that end up all over the house in the wrong places. How can all that take 4 hours? Well.. let’s just say it can. But I’m not complaining, just saying that’s my job now. 

Something inside of me is still defending my decision to quit my “career” job to take care of my family and myself. Something inside me feels inadequate because I’m not making any money. I’ve been conditioned by society to equate my self worth with how much money I make and I’m here today to say that it’s a hard feeling to shake. 

It doesn’t matter how much I am able to help my kids, how much blood I donate to the Red Cross, how much time I spend “volunteering” for the lit mag, or how much I’m able to get done at the house. It just doesn’t. I still feel like I’m not doing enough.. and that’s fucked up. 

***

Well.. I did get my walking in but darling daughter came home from work and most of my treadmill time was spent catching up with her. 

I’ve got more to say, but there’s always tomorrow. 

Beginning at the Beginning Again and Again,

~Miss SugarCookie

2021-02-28 Looking Back to Improve the Future… 🗓 ✅🚫⏰

It’s the last day of the month and the last day of the week AND the last day of my little experiment to untether myself from my phone. You know what that means? It’s time for the ultimate Sunday status. 

First off.. I’ve already been analyzing “stats” for about 50 minutes of today’s walk so either I’m gonna keep walking and get a huge boost on my steps today or this post is going to be super short. 

My update is also going to be a little skewed this week cuz I did try to disconnect from my phone and normal routine to see what affect that would have on my mood and outlook on life. 

This means I did not check my steps or sleep or anything else all week and did not keep track of meditation or eating habits. I just let it all go for a week. I didn’t have a FitBit in 2006 so I treated this past week as if I still didn’t. However, I still wore the FitBit so it could collect the stats anyhow. Why? Just cuz. 😜

Syncing this morning it appears that there are no surprises. Aside from the addition of exercise classes this week, my steps remained about the same and my sleep did not deviate from the norm. 

Those are the only two categories I have definitive results on. As I said the others weren’t tracked and are largely subjective anyhow. 

Moving on to the the results of my little experiment to bring 2006 back…. all things considered I would say it was kind of an epic fail. I suppose I did a fine job leaving my phone alone for the most part and embraced limiting my checking of email like a champ. I’m already a minimalist when it comes to Facebook and twitter and insta so it was easy to not open those apps all week.

In short, all things that are naturally easy were easy. The more challenging areas are responding to text messages and I came to conclude that I wasn’t going to be able to give up this daily blog. It’s the main activity that boosts my screen time each day. And that didn’t change this past week. 

My daily average screen time last week was 2 hours and 27 minutes (down 32% from the previous week). The previous week was about an hour longer. The devil, of course, is in the details. I can look at the apps and categories (productivity, social networking, and creativity) and see where my time is being spent. Very useful.

It looks like the reporting of data collected only goes back 4 weeks so I don’t have long term analytics like I do with FitBit, but it’s enough to analyze my week last week and perhaps set new goals. I’m not inclined to try and limit my productivity (this) but can definitely set a goal around “social networking.” 

I find it interesting that the messaging app is categorized as social networking along with Facebook and Twitter. I dig digging into this data and am already developing a new set of metrics and goals. I just can’t help myself. 🤣

***

Tomorrow is the start of a new month and new week which means an opportunity to start fresh and redefine the goals. Considering my attempts in February (and January too for that matter) fell short, I’m going to try and take a look at things from the new perspectives gained these past few weeks. I’m no longer going to be measuring “success” according to the same scale. Here are the new-new targets:

For sleep, instead of going according to the sleep score or duration, I’m going to be hyper-focused on whe time I go to bed. The goal will be to be in bed by 10pm with about half an hour of wind-down time beforehand. If I’m able to do that, the other stats should validate that it is working. 

I’m removing food and healthy eating from the set list of goals. Instead I’m going to try not to think about it as much. I’m putting the scale away and not imposing any restrictions or trying any fad behaviors. The ultimate objective is to put the focus elsewhere. I spend too much time struggling with the healthy eating puzzle and always seem to fail. Maybe if I let that shit go, I will have more time to work on other mental puzzles. We’ll see.

I’m keeping mood and meditation for now, but added an daily alarm on my phone to stop what I’m doing immediately and meditate. We’ll see how that goes too. 

As for the screen time and dependency on technology.. my new goals are to keep daily screen time down under 2.5 hours a day AND not more than 30 minutes on social stuff (remember that includes messaging). To support this I’m going to continue to keep my phone at a distance, both overnight and during the day. At least that part of what I did last week seems as though it would be easy to adopt more permanently. 

I’m not really changing my expectations for steps but adding 20 minutes of cardio as another check. The classes will help and I’m going to look into what cardio classes my gym offers. The strength training I started this week is great, but I’m really missing Jazzercise or some other form of cardio. If all else fails, I could always just bike here at home. 

I’ve actually switched to the bike now. I’ve perfected walking and typing at the same time and so this is a test of biking and typing. 

I think that’s the end of the changes for this week. Am I ready for a new week? Am I ready for March? Yes and no. 

Ready or not though.. time waits for no one.

Cheers to Healthy Living (and Analytics),

~Miss SugarCookie

2021-02-27 Three Days Rolled into One

Yesterday felt like two or three days long. Waking up just past two and milling about in the middle of the night and eventually meeting with the normal morning routine felt like day 1. Day 2 was going to a yoga class and returning home to house chores and a bunch of stuff for the GLR well into the afternoon. Then an unexpected thing happened that altered the trajectory of the day and threw me immediately into a third full day.

In short we scrambled to get our act together enough to make an impromptu road trip to Kansas City. 3 hours to get where we were going. 1 hour to “take care of business” and 3 hours home. When my head hit the pillow at 11pm last night I was asleep almost immediately. Waking up this morning, it feels like it was all a dream. Strange. 

The “business” was the purchase of a new car for Jim. We’ve had repeated trouble with the vehicle he drives (as in stranded twice in the last couple weeks) and that’s just not something he’s keen on happening again. Though we likely have the problem with the Jeep (2001) fixed now, the “experiment” of buying old cars has lost its appeal. He just wanted something that would be reliable. 

Shortly after I moved in with him I gifted my daughter who was 17 at the time my car. It’s a 2012 Prius-C. I also had a “fun” car which was an impulse buy sometime after my divorce. That was a 2004 RX8 which was fun, when it ran. But it was non-operational more than it was operational and taking up a garage space so we sold it. That left me with no car of my own except for the one Jim was leasing when I met him. A Mercedes. It was a great car but I’m just not a Mercedes kind of girl so when the lease was up, I elected to get a Hyundai Kona. It’s a cute little hatchback with all wheel drive when I need it. And I love it.

But Jim was driving old cars. Ones purchased outright with the thought that it would be more economical to just fix them when they break down. In theory this was a good plan, until the breakdowns threw a wrench in this day and that day and pretty quickly he got fed up and started looking for a newer option. He did a lot of research and picked out what he wanted, including options, but there were no cars in the Omaha metro area meeting the specs. So he’s been keeping an eye on surrounding areas, which apparently includes KC. 

Finding that yesterday, he snagged it right up. And they refused to hold it for us overnight to Saturday, hence the impromptu road trip on a Friday afternoon. This of course meant that I had to drive home by myself. You can see how being awake since the early morning that day coupled with no real rest during the day would equate to a big problem driving solo for three hours in the dark at 8pm. It was tough.

We had to stop several times just so I could snap out of my sleepy haze. I could tell Jim felt really terrible, but was also pumping with excitement about his new car. It was cute and annoying at the same time… all the text messages (hands free with apple car play) kept me going but also became irritating because I just wanted to be left alone. When I say that little trip felt like a whole day, I’m not kidding.

He actually felt so bad about it he elected to sleep in a different room last night so that his heavy breathing/snoring would not keep me awake. As a consequence, I slept for about 7.5 hours which was glorious.

I didn’t get out of bed until 8am and that too was amazing. Now I’m walking and working on recovery. Recovery from living those three days as well as the week of hell I put my body through with exercise classes. I’m taking this day as a rest day and going to let my aching muscles heal a little bit. No weights and no heavy cardio. Just walking. 

Having my afternoon and evening hijacked yesterday meant I didn’t get to some of my Friday chores. I didn’t finish washing and drying laundry or the cat grooming or scooping litter boxes. So these are on the agenda today instead. Other than that, I’m gonna take it easy.

I’m thinking about my attempt this week to roll back the calendar to 2006 and formulating thoughts about that little experiment but I think I’ve written enough about cars and stuff so that’s gonna have to wait. 

With that, I’m gonna quit early and get to all that relaxing I’ve promised myself. 

Happy Caturday, 🐱

~Miss SugarCookie

2021-02-26 Dealing With Inky, Blinky, Pinky, and Clyde

I’ve been awake since before 3am. What time I don’t know because I’ve been told looking at the clock is waking up my brain. Ok. So the first time I looked at the clock was about 3:15am. It’s not the light of the clock waking up my brain. I’m pretty sure my brain does that all on its own.

I had a slight headache and think it might be the alcohol consumption from last night. That could have something to do with the not sleeping well. It’s not rocket science, but what came first? The drinking or the poor sleep? No matter.. these are not the thoughts that consume me at 3 and 4 and 5am. Nope.

What is it then? I had a brief conversation with Jim last night where I was lamenting about my thoughts always being consumed with something. In my margarita’d state I described a pac man that was chomping furiously through my mind perpetually consuming my thoughts. I’ve got a limited amount of dots, you know, on the screen everyday and the pac man is always navigating the map of my brain, searching and chomping.. rounding corner after corner, chomping and searching, and eventually all the thoughts have been eaten and the day ends.

What about the ghosts?? 

Yes.. Inky, Blinky, Pinky, and Clyde are there. They are there to drive the pac man’s decisions on which way to chomp next. 

Fun fact: Each of the four ghosts in the game has both Japanese and English names. In Japan they started as Fickle, Chaser, Ambusher and Stupid. In my case these alternate names seem more appropriate. Their current personas are defined further as follows… 

Fickle: Always something I can’t decide and am continuously analyzing and weighing options in. Currently this is the question of what to do about my title with the GLR? GLR stands for the Good Life Review and is the online lit mag I founded last year and am currently trying to keep afloat and moving in the right direction. When we first determined the masthead, I gladly accepted the title of “managing editor” and let Ed take the EIC title, but over time this had started to grate on me in ways I could not have predicted. My issues have do with perception, the division of responsibilities-who is doing the work, and traditional patriarchal roles, and also frankly the way Ed throws the title around as if it gives him more authority. Great guy, but I don’t care for that. 

The fickle thoughts I have gravitate between removing the titles completely, and all manner of variation in between. I can’t tell you how much brain power I’ve wasted on thinking about this. That alone drives me kind of batty. We’re still in our first year and have such a small fooorprint or following that it matters not. But it matters to me apparently. 🙄 

Chaser: The endless quest to lose 5 pounds and look better. This is often disguised as attempts to eat healthier or exercise more or detox. It’s an endless chase that never leads to success. Always failure. Always disappointment. And then forgiveness and then beginning again. 

Ambusher: This is the random thing on fire that seems to pop up out of nowhere to hijack my plans. It might be a sink that won’t drain, a car that won’t start, a kid with an F in English, or a show that demands to be binge-watched. They appear randomly and with varying degrees of severity. Whatever it is, it drives pac man in a different direction. 

Right now it’s a one-two-three combo of my sons school performance and feeling like I’m not pulling my weight here at the house PLUS my pending book contract. All will require a lot of effort to resolve or get through and any effort spent may not result in a solution. 

Stupid: Stupid is just stupid. 

No matter what I do, the pac man goes the way he goes. The ghosts pursue. The dots on the map get eaten and the sun goes down. The sun comes back up, there’s a fresh map full of new dots, and it starts again. 

Sometimes, like today, I get a new map before the sun comes up. There I am, lying in the dark and the pac man appears and immediately starts chomping. 

This morning it was the GLR stuff. Not just the title, but also the next release, the social media issues, the website that I’ve failed to update all month, the contest, the promo effort (or lack thereof), the lawyer and nonprofit establishment. All the dots. All the dots. All the dots.

At 4:30am I worked in the GLR website and updated the home page, the masthead, and the sound bites page. I’m going to try EIC on for size and see if that makes me feel any better. Cuz.. you know it’s all about how I feel. 🙄😜

Other than that I was thinking about my lack of sleep and not sleeping because I’m thinking about not sleeping and well… that’s just stupid. Thanks Stupid. 

There you have it folks. My Friday morning in a nutshell.

Cheers to the Weekend,

~Miss SugarCookie

2021-02-25 Trials By Fire 🔥

It’s early and I don’t want to be up. I also don’t want to lay in bed for one more damn minute thinking about all the things and stuff. 

My desire to keep the schedule I’ve set myself for today ends at about 11:30am. I’m not particularly excited about going to CB today. I’m actually not really jazzed about going to the exercise class I have on the books for 8:15 this morning. Which is a good segue for what’s aching this week. 

I’ve met a number of really great people through the MFA program that I graduated from this past January and 2020 was not ideal for cultivating new relationships. 

It was also a serious bummer that I had to give up my addiction to Jazzercise. Now that things have relaxed a bit with the “restrictions” I’ve been given the green light to attend classes again. Just as I was getting ready to look into signing up for classes, a few women from the MFA program approached me about taking classes with them at a “classes only” gym. 

These two women I would consider acquaintances at this point but with the potential for more of a friendship, which is exciting. I mean, I don’t meet new people easily and am often socially awkward and quiet in group settings so the opportunity to chat outside the big MFA groups is great. So I accepted the invitation for attending a week of free classes with them. 

Monday was weight training which was working all the major muscle groups using a bar and free weights. The sets are set to music which of course is great. The classes are quite small compared to Jazzercise (5-8 people) or any class I ever took at my other gym. Monday’s class was good but there wasn’t a lot of intro or consideration given because I was new.

The instructor didn’t provide recommendations for weights or even explain along the way how one might go up in weight for legs or down for biceps and triceps. I was sort of left to watch everyone else and self conscious so I stayed with the same weight the entire time. Probably not smart.

The class was hard and made me super sore. It wasn’t just “next day sore”.. it was “legs and arms of jelly for about 2 hours after” sore and hard to move the day after. But in a way it felt great just to feel that feeling again after so long. For the past year I’ve just been walking every day and not really getting any weight training in.

These women go everyday so Tuesday was not a rest day.. it was cardio instead. We did a step class and I’ve never done step before. If I thought the instruction on Monday was poor, Tuesday was horrific! Zero intro and so fast paced that unless you’ve been doing it for years, you would be completely lost. 

It also made me feel like a fool, to be hopping around the riser trying to keep up and constantly facing the wrong direction, or being on the wrong side of the step. It was close to an hour of fast paced music with the instructor calling out moves and “left-this,” “right-that, “straddle,” “corner,” “indecision.”… 

Indecision?? No indecision on this one.. it was terrible. 

At least with Jazzercise they work slow into the routines and you can catch on. With this, there were so many hops and turns, half the time you aren’t even facing the instructor. I pride myself on being coordinated and also being able to pick up on stuff pretty quickly but this was horrible from the first song to the last. 

Anyway, if you’re paying attention, you’ll recognize that Tuesday was also the angry day from hell and let me tell you this cardio workout only made that worse. 

I dare say I won’t do that again unless they offer a beginners instructional class to teach the moves and practice at half pace or something. Then there was Wednesday.. yesterday, the anti-Tuesday. 

It was another weight training class (mind you I was still really hurting from Monday). This one was called “body pump” and it was a little less intense with more reps. I was actually kind of dreading it given the way my body felt and the two previous experiences, so the bar was really low. 

Turns out the class was fantastic. Everything about it was great. The instructor actually took T and I aside and explained the class and helped us to know what we needed for eq and also why we would want different weights to switch out during the class and what we should start with since this was our first session and was kind of a test of what we could handle. 

She was also really personable during the class and encouraging. It was a huge 180 from the previous two days and I don’t know why it hadn’t dawned on me, but it was the instructor. Makes a big difference. I would definitely go back and do that one again.. if I decide to sign up for realz. 

That was yesterday and today is barre. Another new experience for me. And T has already told me it was the hardest one from the classes she did last week. Good golly. I’m already feeling so, so sore. Can’t imagine it being worse than Monday and Tuesday so I can’t say I’m particularly looking forward to it. Still.. gotta try at least once. 

In the back of my head I’m comparing everything to Jazzercise. I love J so it’s gonna be a hard sell to get me to put my money into this place instead. Doing both would be big $$$ and also a big time commitment. 

Of course one thing going for this class are my two new acquaintances. T invited me over to her house after barre today for tea and that sounds lovely. It will be nice to sit and chat instead of standing around a gym floor. 

After that, as I said, I’m supposed to go to CB for lunch with my dad. Not particularly excited about that. I mean, it’s ok, but I could definitely use that time for something else. I know it’s bad but my brain is working overtime on excuses to get out of it. Does that make me a bad person? Probably. 

Anyway.. my time is almost up and I’ve got to get ready for the morning. 

Peace and love, 

~Miss SugarCookie

2021-02-24 Some Days Just Need to Be Forgotten

Yesterday was a doozie. I’m not sure what exactly what it was besides a series of random, unrelated events but it was a miracle nobody was murdered. Scratch that. I know exactly what it was that started it.. the incident with the trash cans. After that, there’s not a thing that could happen to fix the mood for the rest of the day. But there were several things that made it worse.

Said incident made me sooooooo angry, I really wanted to punch something. And that’s not like me. I might get emotional and sad and cry sometimes but I rarely get that angry and almost never angry enough to want to scream and throw things.

Talk about raw, honest and organic… what I’m about to write will not seem like that big of a deal, but that’s what makes it a big deal in my mind. There’s absolutely no reason I should have gotten as mad as I was. And not having time to work it out all damn day did not help. Everything else was just fuel for the fire. 

Here’s the short version of what happened that started it all… about 8:30am I’m doing chores and opening mail and realize the paper recycling is full so decide to swap out the grocery bag for a new one and put the full one in the big recycling bin in the garage. What I quickly discovered is that the bin was FULL. It should have been empty since they picked our recycling up last week (which they only do every other week). 

I’m in charge of the recycling and trash so nobody puts things in the big bins but me (strictly forbidden as I can’t stand when people carelessly put stuff in without rinsing clean or whatever and bins get sticky and gross). Instead, the recycling goes in the old short green and blue bins elsewhere. So finding the bin full was a shock.

But it was obvious to me it was because the recycling was not picked up last week. The items I had on top were still the same ones. I took the bin out to the curb myself.. which means that when Jim wheeled it back to the garage he didn’t look inside to see the recycling truck had not been down our street yet. What the hell??!!

The recycling is a mess at our house as it is. We always have too much than what will fit in the container every two weeks and that’s resulted in me breaking down the cardboard and driving it to another drop point. Now we have this full bin, and enough recycling to fill a second one and running out of places to put it. 

Goodness knows the recycling is a trigger point for me already because nobody cares but me. Despite repeated requests for members of this household to comply with some simple rules, it’s still a problem. I’ve got several bags of combined trash and recycling that needs sorting and the thought of going through the efffing sticky trash irritates me to no end.

Now this. This just pushed me over the edge. I went mental. I screamed out loud and stomped my feet like a three year old having a tantrum. It was absurd. 

I mean this is small potato’s people. Like have I become so spoiled that these small things need to be a big deal?? No. 

Well.. stuff kept happening all day and I never could pull myself away from that angry feeling. I literally carried it all the way to bed with me last night. And unfortunately took it out on Jim a little. It was a strange night and then I ended up moving to the spare bedroom In the middle of the night because of the snoring. 

I never really got good sleep and you know what? The sun came up and night turned into day anyway and I’m writing this thinking “what is there to complain about?” 

Nada. That’s what. 

So what if I have to make some more trips to an alternate recycling location. It’s not the end of the world. Good grief!! 

This is what I don’t get about life. Why is it one day something is such a damn big deal and the next it’s like ‘shrug’? 

One day I’m grumpy and the next it’s all good again. And I can’t even blame PMS this time. 

Anyway.. today everything seems fine and manageable again AND I can eat whatever I want. A friend of mine reminded me yesterday that my life is great right now. As if I should need a reminder. I should not, but there it was anyhow. Thanks Vis!

As for the rest of this day, I’m gonna do my best to keep the positive mood I have going into the afternoon and evening. I’ve got loads of lit mag stuff to take care of plus some planning for a future adventure. Planning almost always makes me happy, so that’s good. 

As for living in 2006.. it’s going about the same as the last two days and I can’t say I’ve got more to say about than that. Maybe I’ll have more as the week goes on but I’m still just feeling out what’s good and what’s really tough. 

I think that’s it for today. Time to get on that GLR train…. 

Peace and Love and Recycling, 

~Miss SugarCookie

2021-02-23 24 Days in a a Row…

Streaks man. Gotta keep em going. I’m still in transition and some habits are hard to break.  Hard-hard. Especially when you get texted by a friend you haven’t talked to in a while. That’s not an emergency but what’s a girl to do? 

But tomorrow will be different. Tomorrow I’m getting serious about getting myself back to 2006 (as serious as one can be with a silly little experiment). 

It’s 9:30 and had no time to walk today. No times to walk or write or read. Tomorrow… tomorrow WILL be different. 

Mark my words, 

~Miss SugarCookie

2021-02-22 Ready, Set, Rewind… 🕹🕹🕹

Today I’m transitioning my moves to match more of how life was in 2006. That’s right, it’s really happening. It’s definitely a transition infused with little moments of awareness. I’m thinking about the behaviors and technologies I use on a regular basis. It’s one thing to say “I’m going to try this experiment for one week where I disconnect from life in 2021 and channel my inner 2006.” And another altogether to actually try and live that way. 

What I’m saying is that the word transition is completely appropriate. I don’t think I’ll even realize the full extent of what I’m proposing it until I belong to embrace the differences. 

There have already been at least 3 instances this morning that I deviated, both consciously and subconsciously from the “plan.” Typing this is on my phone is #4 and obvi a conscious decision. 

The others were as follows: 

#1. Checking my phone email and sleep stats as soon as I woke up. I did it automatically without thinking. I suppose this is because it’s such an ingrained habit that it’s just natural. After I did that, I realized it and decided I need to keep my phone elsewhere overnight. 

I mean, in reality, I still need my phone in case of emergencies just like in 2006. I’m just trying not to be tethered to it so much and am interested in what apps I miss. Which ones make my life easier versus just being a distraction or time suck. 

#2. I felt compelled to check my phone when a text came in and also felt it necessary to respond to said text right away. This one was more of a conscious choice. My wrist buzzed (my FitBit connects to my phone via Bluetooth) and when I saw who it was from I just could not help myself. It’s one of those things that could probably have waited. Not an emergency by any stretch, but ugh.. so easy to just respond and nip it right there. Done done. 

This is probably a fence and I’ll have to decide which side I’m on. Would it be better to resist checking the phone or responding immediately or would it just drive me bonkers wondering what it was. For sure knowing who it was from would be good. If it’s the kids or Jim, then I would react differently than other folks. Certainly this particular person doesn’t need an immediate reply. 

I suppose it also brings up the question of whether or not getting that notification on my wrist is good or not. I a way it allows me to leave the phone wherever and not tempted to be on it. In another way it’s just the “immediacy” I’d need, the interruption pulling me away from whatever it is I’m working on. Mite thinking about this will be needed. 

#3. While making breakfast this morning I asked Alexa what the news was. This is another one of those learned behaviors. In the morning when I’m alone in the kitchen cooking or doing dishes I ask Alexa to tell me what’s going on in the world. 

This is definitely not something that would happen in 2006. Alexa hadn’t been invented yet (I’m fairly certain). I would say that the tech in this case definitely improves my life by making it easier for me to get the news and add things to my grocery list. Aside from the speaker capabilities, those are the two uses I’ve found the most helpful. 

Which leads to this… #4.. Typing my thoughts on my phone. Also super convenient but not necessary. I could just as easily read a book or something while walking on the treadmill. But it’s gonna be tough to give up my best multitasking opportunity of the day. If there’s one thing I’ve learned these past thousand days blogging, it’s that it definitely adds value to my life. 

For THIS.. there might have to be an exception to the rules. But let’s be real. There are no rules. It’s my game and I’m making it up as I go along. 😜

That’s gonna be it today. We’ll see how the rest of this day goes. 

Cheers, 

~Miss SugarCookie

2021-02-21 Sunday Status Funny Money 🐹

It’s Sunday and I’m checking my stats. How did I do meeting my goals? 

For sleep I achieved my goal 6 of 7 nights. 

Healthy eating.. 4 of 7. 

Mood.. 4 of 7.

Meditation.. 2 of 7. 

Exercise.. 6 of 7. 

Most of this looks good but feels a bit like funny money. Like you know how you get paid every two weeks for doing a job and the money is electronically deposited in your bank account and then some other company comes along and takes that coin back out for things like rent, electricity, insurance. It’s like a magic trick. One minute the numbers are there and the next.. Poof.. gone.. It happens automagically. You never actually see the cash, hold it, count it. That’s funny money.

Kinda makes a person feel like a hamster in a wheel. You know, in that metaphor what gives the hamster quality of life? Stopping to eat. Stopping to wee (or woo). And getting pulled out of the cage by the giant 6 year old who lets her run around the bedroom floor for a while. Perhaps getting a lettuce or carrot on these tiny adventures and of course weeing and wooing on the purple rug is the BEST! 

What does this metaphor teach us about life? That we need to maximize our time off the wheel. Cuz pretty soon now, that tiny little pumping heart can’t take anymore and the hamster dies. Poof!.. Just like that. 

I check my stats regularly. I set goals for my self. I’m constantly evaluating myself and my health. I gave up my old hamster wheel last year but I’m still on this one.

My New Years résolution this year was to do less instead of more. To be kind to myself and more forgiving. To meet that end, I backed off on my daily goals. But here we are nearing the end of February and I’m questioning the validity of all this. Like money in the bank, it all becomes numbers and checkmarks on a page. I add them up but they don’t amount to much.

So I backed off on my sleep goal and the result this week is a 6 of 7 instead of 4 of 7. So what? I still feel the same. I still have the same energy issues each day. I don’t get more restful sleep just because I back off on my goal. It just makes me feel better about how I’m doing. But it’s a magic trick. An illusion. 

It’s the same with the other stats. I have my daily step goal, which I reduced from 12k to 10k as a part of my resolution. So today’s calculated 6 of 7 would have been 4 of 7 instead. So what. It doesn’t change anything. And the other measurements are just as suspect. 

I took away “productivity” and replaced it with “mood” and I added one for meditation. Mood is subjective as there are no numbers and this feels more legit. Of all the stats I’m tracking, it feels the most genuine and important. I think that’s because that’s the real goal. To FEEL better. To FEEL healthier. To FEEL like I’m getting the most out of every day. 

Tangentially related is the brain child idea I had this week about inviting 2006 to 2021 and living life for a week the same way I was back then.

No smart phone. No social media. No googling everything or relying on the internet so much. It crossed my mind that 2006 was pre-FitBit too and before I tracked my stats so vigorously. 

It also predates any regular daily writing so my mind is really foggy with how life really was. It might be an interesting exercise to try and mentally recreate a day in the life of Miss SugarCookie in 2006. The first step of course is removing all those things I just mentioned. 

This means (if I go through with it) that I’ll not be keeping stats for as long as the experiment persists. And won’t be mentally tethered to my phone.

Tangentialy related is also the argument I had with my darling daughter last night because I did not have my phone with me when she texted the specifics of what she wanted to eat. I cooked the wrong thing and she refused to eat it and it was so ridiculous. I got so so so angry that she was acting spoiled and ungrateful and she just didn’t get it. Jim said I just needed to make the other thing and remember that she’s sick (one day post vaccine shot and running a fever and in bed all day). So I did. And she didn’t even thank me. Whatever. 

My point is that the people that will be the most affected by this little experiment of mine are those who “expect” things from me or are used to communicating via text. Nobody on FB will miss me because I’m not really on FB anyway. Same for twitter. And since I don’t have a 9 to 5 anymore, there’s nobody who is going to miss me not getting back to them ASAP there.

So today is my day of preparation. Thinking about what it is really going to look like when I pull the trigger on this test. Rolling back to 2006.

Why 2006?

I had to draw a line somewhere, you know, and thinking about what things add value to my life, like that hamster with their brief breaks from the wheel. Eating adds value and so does sleep. It is not a basic need in the pure sense of the word but music is pretty much essential for my daily existence.

If I’m giving up my phone for a week, then I need some other way to get my tunes. I don’t have a working CD player so my original iPod will have to do. I actually looked up the model number and it’s circa 2006. So that’s why. 

No Bluetooth of course so I’ll have to find a wired set of headphones or earbuds. I know I have some somewhere, just have to find them. That part will be easy compared to making my people understand that if they want something from me, they need to ask me in person. How novel. People living in the same house sitting down face to face. 

I think my treadmill time today is past being up. I’m secretly hoping people stay asleep a while longer so I can get more time to myself. We’ll see. 

Next stop.. 2006 and scrapping the stats!

~Miss SugarCookie