Friday fun

I have had such a fun day today! Let me tell you about it in a bullet-point rundown of my day!

  • I woke up the first time when Justin came back to bed from walking the dogs, which meant that I didn’t have to get up yet to do that! (LOVE!)
  • I woke up the second time when my alarm went off at 8. I had to leave the house by 8:30 to get to my first appointment of the day. I got to sleep in!
  • My first appointment of the day was fasting bloodwork at my doctor’s office in Bluffton. The nurse working the lab was so friendly and great! I didn’t even notice she took two vials of blood; I thought she’d only done one until she showed me the second one.
  • After that was done, I could finally eat breakfast! So I went to the Dunkin’s around the corner for coffee and eggs and bacon and toast. And a donut.
  • (Justin stayed home for all this, by the way. He thought about coming and then went back to bed instead after not sleeping well last night.)
  • My second appointment of the day was with the chiropractor’s office, who managed to get my neck back so I can move it both directions again! Yea! It was getting annoying not being able to turn my neck very far.
  • Heading out of Bluffton, I stopped at the Goodwill to check if I could find any pants. My last pair that I could wear to work had a catastrophic structural error in the zipper while I was at work on Monday.
  • (Side note: Monday morning I woke up from a dream during which Mom said those pants didn’t look good on me and that I should stop wearing them. Of course, the rest of the dream had me singing a solo of “Into the Unknown” from Frozen 2 during a Walmart-located church service while holding a bow and arrow. So. I wore the pants anyway. And then took an early lunch break to go home and change into a skirt.)
  • I didn’t find any pants at Goodwill. I found 2 skirts and 2 shirts.
  • So I went to Torrid at the Tanger mall in Pooler and bought 2 pairs of jeans from there! (I can wear jeans to work!)
  • I went back home, where Justin was happy that he’d stayed home and avoided my shopping, even though I wouldn’t have gone shopping if he’d been with me. But I’d been wanting to go shopping since Monday, so I was happy to get it done today.
  • He also got 2 donuts from Dunkin’s.
  • I puttered around the house for a while as he needed to get a group project done. I took care of the dog’s toys which were overflowing and needed some pruning.
  • Then Justin and I went back out to the garage to work on a project there that I will write about very soon. But not today.
  • I went for a walk once we were done out there. I took my 2-pound weights with me today, which was great, but my knee was aching from all the walking I’d already done during the day, so it wasn’t a long or fast walk. But I did walk and I am feeling it.
  • I stretched and showered and made dinner with Justin.
  • I folded 2 loads of laundry!
  • I washed the dirty dishes!
  • I’ve watched several episodes of NCIS!
  • And it’s only Friday! Weeeeeeee!!!!!

Wednesday fitness update: January’s “Don’t break the chain”

I’m heading to bed in a couple minutes but let’s see what I can write in that time! 🙂

I started the “Don’t break the chain” thing on the 6th of January, and in that month I only missed 3 days after getting it going. The first day was a long day at the end of a long, frustrating week. And then I just kinda forgot the day after? It was weird and I felt badly about it at the end of the day. And then the 31st, I had plans to do stuff, and then ran out of time because we ended up running errands and stuff most of the day.

I also missed yesterday, Feb 4th, and that’s because I was at work late and then when I got home, Justin met me outside and we worked in the garage until after 8:00 and then we had to figure out dinner and that was the end of my evening.

But only missing 4 days of the last almost 5 weeks? I’d call that pretty darn good!

And I’m feeling really good about it. I was able to walk almost twice what I used to be able to walk and a whole lot faster than I used to be able to do it, and with significantly less swelling in my knee and generally feeling all over better about the whole thing! Seriously, I’m walking so much faster lately, even around work. And my flexibility is getting lots better since I’m stretching after I’m done walking, and that’s doing loads of good for my poor QL muscles in my back that are always seizing up. And I’m starting to see a little tiny bit of definition in the muscles in my legs! And my core strength is also improving; I’m doing a Pilates video some of the days when I’m just not getting out walking and that, plus the walking, is helping there.

Once my core is a little stronger and the daylight is staying a little longer, I’m going to get back on my roller skates. But I’m currently afraid of my lack of core strength and hurting my back while trying not to fall over. My chiropractor scolds me when I fall over…

OK! That’s all the time I have! Time to head to bed. 🙂

Work has been keeping me occupied

The weekend of January 17th, my work computer got updated to Windows 10, along with all the other changes that go along with getting a whole new operating system added to the machine.

Since then, work has been a nuthouse. Primarily because it’s taken me two weeks to figure out how to get all my bookmarks and shortcuts back and figure out where everything is located with the updated programs. And because one of the primary programs that I use is now only accessible via a virtual machine that I have to remote into and open the program from there, and then it wipes clean every night so all my bookmarks and shortcuts disappear again. And because I use a lot of macros to take different reports and pull them all into one Excel worksheet and those macros went from taking N number of minutes each to now taking twice that length of time for some reason. Unless, of course, I run it on the virtual machine, and then they only run about 50% longer instead. Unless they crash. And they will.

The rest of the craziness was because management decided they wanted to show different charts to leadership and the guy who used to do the charts left the company a week or two before that and they all became my responsibility instead! Yea! And, really, I’m the scheduler and it wouldn’t have been that bad if the transition had just been that I’m doing the charts instead of him, because I came up with a way to update the whole group of them in one download into a workbook and done, all of 5 minutes to update. But no! They wanted to track something else. For which I didn’t have anything built into this system to track, and so I needed to create the items to track. All 200 items. Entered into the database, scheduled, and then plotted into the charts.

But I think we’ve finally got that settled – of course, the meeting with Leadership was cancelled last week after all the fussing over the charts, but I’m sure I’ll find out eventually what else they want changed.

And I’m finally getting into the grove of how to get things updated, for the most part. I just had to start getting to work 15 minutes earlier than I had been to get ready for my 7:15 am meeting. And as long as I don’t have to run off after work to get somewhere on time, like I did today, so the macros crashed and I wasn’t able to send my end of the day reports before I had to head out and the bosses are going to be grumpy about that in the morning.

Anyway, it made for a really frustrating 2 weeks, but I think we’re on the upswing now. I got a new program last week called Power BI that I’m hopeful is going to solve a lot of my problems, once I figure out how to make it work. But I think it’s going to do the trick!

Overcoming my compassion fatigue

With everything going on right now in national politics and the world, there are a lot of things that I feel I ought to care about. I’m pretty sure you all know what I mean. With the presidential election coming up later this year and the things happening in the Middle East with Iran and the earthquake in Puerto Rico and the whole climate change issue, it’s becoming overwhelming to try to focus on what I actually should spend my time caring about. I have a lot of empathy and it causes me to be very concerned for people who are in need and in pain, but after a while, it’s just completely overwhelming and I start to shut down and back away because if I don’t, I will completely fall apart. I have to separate myself from it in order to maintain my sanity. There’s just TOO MUCH.

But I can’t just ignore it all or just decide not to care about any of it, either. I have to find a way to make it more manageable for me to address. If I keep on trying to figure out how to deal with all of these things, all at once, I’m never going to be able to make a difference about any of them.

The video below helps explain this a little bit. (Erica, you might not like it because it’s very Democratic and there is at least one swear word.) Specifically, starting at 3:35 minutes into the video, it starts talking about compassion fatigue.

So my plan for this year is to find a way to do one thing a month. Either volunteer somewhere or donate money to something or find a way to do something that helps address my concerns about the many, many things that are happening right now.

This month, I’m picking up trash. We went to the beach on Friday and we picked up trash on the beach. It was very windy and there wasn’t a lot to pick up, but we had a lovely time taking a walk. Yesterday, I picked up trash outside my house. I don’t know if it’s the grounds crew who cuts the grass or the regular maintenance guys who are supposed to do that, but they’re all very busy lately and the cigarette butts and trash around the place has gotten out of hand. So I went around my building and picked up what I could for a little while. And today I walked up the street where I do my regular walks and picked up trash that way, too. I mostly see this street in the dark and I knew there was a lot of trash. There was so much more that I could see during the daylight! It’s astonishing.

Picking up trash isn’t something that’s hard for me. It doesn’t require any money for me to do it (we already had the trash grabby thing and a trash bucket). It does require some time, but it’s time that I have available and time that I’m happy to put forward toward this effort. It requires my mobility, and my improved fitness certainly helped with this. And I certainly feel good about myself for having done this. I feel a little negative toward other people who are throwing all this trash all over the place. (Come on people! Pick up your trash!) But I still think I’ve managed to do a good thing. And that makes me feel better about myself and what I’m doing in my world.

I was out for about 2 hours and got 2 1/2 buckets full of trash. That first one (left) was going up the street where I walk and I had to turn back because it kept trying to fly out of the bucket. The top right was just outside my complex, the sidewalk beside the gas station. And the lower right was from the grass in the median of the street just outside my complex. Humanity as a whole, we are such trash goblins. So much garbage!

But you know what? I did something. It might not be much, but it was something and I can see the difference and I feel good about it! I can’t fix the whole world. But I can do something to make my corner of it a little brighter!

Saturday fun

Today has been an absolutely lovely day! Let me tell you all about it!

Justin got up when the dogs begged to go outside, so I could keep on sleeping for a while. Eventually, he came back to bed and the puppies were too excited to lay quietly, so I got up so he could rest longer.

While he was sleeping, I played with the dogs for a while, caught up on a little reading, and then decided to get my yoga in for the day. I think Saturdays are going to be yoga days – I have plenty of time usually and it’s a nice break from walking and a good opportunity to work on my strength and stretching. I’m still working to make sure I’m balancing evenly on both legs and getting the muscles on my left leg to stretch out properly.

While I was doing yoga, Nivis blitzed around the coffee table over and over again. He’d run around one side, jump on on the sofa, jump back down, run around the other end, run over my yoga bolster, and then back around again. And then he’d run over and attack Einstein for a minute. When I laid down on the floor do so some bridges and crunches, he decided to come over and lick the sweat off my face. He’s a helper.

After I finished that, we went for a walk outside for a little while and it was nice and warm and they were good boys and did not chase after the puppy like I know they wanted to. We’re working on it.

We went back inside so I could shower. And then check in on Justin, who was waking up, just reading in bed. And then get some breakfast.

We were going to have dinner with some friends, but they got some unexpected company come into town, but we filled up our afternoon by going to the park and doing some archery for a little while. I will have a bruise on my elbow again and I completely snapped an arrow in half. I have no idea how I managed it. And Justin lost another one. Two? At least one more arrow to the deceptively deep canal filled with murky water behind the targets. I think I’m improving, but I’m not sure, and either way, I’m having a blast.

We had to leave in time to get to the mall for haircuts. I think it’s been about a year since I got a cut and it was getting really crunchy at the ends. I definitely needed it. And Justin wasn’t full on shaggy yet, but he was getting there.

After haircuts, we went across the street for some BBQ and then went back to the mall for some ice cream before heading back home to relieve and feed the dogs.

It probably doesn’t sound like a whole lot, just some yoga and archery and haircuts. But I’ve been so filled with sunlight and joy by everything today. It’s the little, wonderful, sometimes ordinary things in life that make me happy. Sleepy morning kisses. Water rippling the sun-speckled water in the pond. Laughing with Justin over ice cream. Excited fluff-ball dogs when we walk in the door.

Life is good! And I’m happy!