Tuesday, January 17, 2012
Last night I got to bed at 10:40, my optimal time, so I happily set my alarm for 6:30 a.m. to give me plenty of exercise time.
This morning I woke up in alarm to insistent knocking on my door. I had been in the midst of a vivid dream & was quite disoriented. "Yes?" I called out.
"Do you want to get up now?" my housemate asked.
I looked at the clock: 7:00 a.m.! The alarm had been going off a full half-hour, but I had been oblivious. I got up, turned it off sheepishly, pulled out my earplugs, took off my sleep mask, & toddled off to the bathroom.
Earplugs became a necessity early in my marriage, as my husband was a BIG snorer & I'm prone to insomnia. But he's long gone now, & I guess I no longer need them. This was not the first time I had slept through the alarm in recent weeks.
I'll keep my habit of sleeping in exercise clothes, though. Having them on this morning allowed me to throw on my walking shoes, coat, & gloves & get out the door within 10 minutes of waking up. I got in 20 minutes of good fast walking--better than no exercise!
Monday, January 16, 2012
The hard thing today is not exercise or eating properly--it's bookkeeping! In 2011 it was my turn to serve as treasurer of my condo association--paying bills, receiving assessment checks, keeping on top of our checking & savings balances so we could make good decisions about repairs & maintenance.
The previous year's treasurer had been dismayed by our antiquated bookkeeping by hand in a physical ledger. He upgraded us to a spreadsheet, which was a very good thing--but he made it EXTREMELY complicated. The 2010 spreadsheet has 7-8 pages! Trust me, our accounts aren't that complex. There are only 6 units in the building, & just a few providers with whom we have ongoing accounts.
But I have something to confess. Throughout the year, because that spreadsheet was SO difficult to figure out (though he gave me an orientation to it), I just avoided it. I made lists by hand of the assessment payments that I deposited each month, & of course I saved all the bills that I paid & recorded the payments on checkbook stubs. And I just tossed all these papers into a pile on top of the treasury file box.
I am NOT a systematic person, I'm afraid.
And now it's 2012, & fortunately I have MLK Day off & no freelance project on hand--so I told the 2012 treasurer that I'd have the checkbook & records ready to hand over to her by tonight. All day I've been sipping tea & sorting papers & filling in a spreadsheet--just two pages thus far, one for expenditures & one for receipts. I've been taking periodic breaks to play word games, read Facebook posts, have lunch, etc.
I'm a little nervous because I haven't yet found all the paperwork for all 12 months for all the units. But I'm reasonably hopeful that I'll get it figured out & finished by the end of the day. My next break will be to do some strength training & stretching; that should energize me for the final push.
One good thing: I've spent almost the whole day STANDING rather than sitting! I really like working at my stand-up desk.
But numbers, not so much.
Sunday, January 15, 2012
This afternoon I walked 3 miles--great exercise, though I couldn't keep up my normal very fast pace all the way because of periodic ice & slush. I had a destination: an event called Occupy the Dream, to call for specific policies promoting economic justice (job creation, holding banks accountable, etc.) on the occasion of Martin Luther King's birthday.
I hadn't realized that it was actually going to be a very large church service, with a FABULOUS gospel choir (mostly activist college students), a keynote address that was much like a sermon, & an audience/congregation composed mostly of African American folks from my northside neighborhood, the south side of Chicago, & Gary, Indiana. It was a great blessing to me to be with these people. When I was a young adult I was a member of an African American church for a while, & the spiritual resources of that tradition are very nurturing to me. I love gospel music & I am so inspired by the civil rights struggle. So it was a privilege to sing some gospel & shout some slogans & "do church" with these brothers & sisters.
They did something I hadn't witnessed before. Several elected officials were present--the County Board president, several state reps/senators, & two US congresspersons. They had them come up in those groupings & posed them questions: "Will you support this policy & this policy?" Then each official moved to the microphone & said "YES!" or "I will!" & we all cheered. It was very much like the way we receive new members at my church: they are asked a series of questions to which they answer yes publicly. Or like a wedding ceremony! A solemn promise to do something that will benefit the residents of their districts, rather than the big corporations & financial institutions that pressure government SO fiercely.
I'm going to do a follow-up action this week, contacting the Illinois attorney general to request that she not sign on to a settlement with the Wall Street banks that would amount to only a tiny slap on the wrist for them. And I signed up to be contacted by the organizers in my neighborhood--I'd like to support what they're doing, as much as I can.
This has been a wonderful weekend, renewing my spirits & even my faith itself.
Saturday, January 14, 2012
Huzzah! Almost all the holiday weight has now come off! Just 0.4 lb to go. Obviously I won't make the 5% goal this round (we have just two weeks left in the early winter challenge), but it's clear that even without the Isoniazid I was taking January-October 2011, I can lose weight--that's very reassuring. In what's left of this challenge I'll aim for a net loss of a couple of pounds from my starting weight, & then I'll be in a good place to reach my long-term goal in the following challenge.
I haven't actually been feeling very huzzah-ish this week, but the scale's news this morning perked me up a bit. As did making Colombian hot chocolate afterward at my housemate's request--it's a perfect morning for it, what with several inches of snow on the ground, some lazy snowflakes still falling, & temps not rising above 22 F (-6 C) today.
Also, I have already put together a crockpot curry to simmer throughout the day: "tangy tamarind chickpeas" from my Indian Slow Cooker book. Last Saturday I made my first Devon Ave. (Indo-Pak area) grocery foray, & got Indian chili powder, serrano peppers, tamarind paste, & one or two other specialty ingredients. So I had everything on hand to make this recipe. I'm hoping it doesn't turn out too spicy-hot for my housemate, whose digestive system is more delicate than mine. Very excited to taste it come evening!
This is a day for house organization. I'm going to attack piles of papers & get my new office into some semblance of order. This includes moving the last piles out of the living room too. And two people have expressed interest in the desk I want to give away (my old sit-down desk), but neither of them has actually come by to pick it up yet. So if by afternoon they still haven't gotten in touch, housemate & I are going to move it out to the alley! Then I'll contact the two people & let them know it's there for the taking, but they'll have to hurry to get it before a scavenger truck comes by.
Having the desk & boxes out of the living room will mean it can be FINALLY set in order & made inviting. Housemate has already washed & rehung the curtains, dusted, & vacuumed (she pays most of her rent with work for me). I can't wait to see how it will look!
I have boiled water & poured it into the blue teapot over a floral tea combo: lavender & rose petals. It's now steeping under a tea cozy & will be nice to sip on throughout the day.
Emotionally/spiritually I'm still struggling, but cooking from scratch & housecleaning are great therapy. This will be a day of peace.
Wednesday, January 11, 2012
I'm staying up quite late tonight because I work from home tomorrow, thus don't have to be up early, & because I learned today that my court process (divorce) has been further delayed, this time by the judge. I'm having a hard time with this but can't do anything to make it move faster. I did dig up some documents for my lawyer to bring along to the next hearing, which will be in late March before a trial judge. That's about the only thing I can do.
It didn't cheer me up to find/send the documents, as they reminded me of a very, very miserable time when my husband was getting ready to move out, putting all his energy into crafting a separation agreement under which I would support him financially for 6 months regardless of whether he found a job (after mostly refusing to do any job hunting during all the years of our marriage), & periodically getting enraged with me & yelling when I didn't agree with him.
It was a very, very exploitive relationship, & the judge's refusal to make a recommendation makes me nervous: couldn't she see that he has ripped me off long term & needs to be stopped? The trial judge will be a different person--I so hope he or she puts a swift end to this extended nightmare. (Ex wants to minimize his share of the debt but to be awarded 50% of any equity in the condo, which he didn't lift a finger to help pay for. Fortunately a recent appraisal showed that the mortgage is well underwater, but the current judge has ordered that ex get his own appraisal to make sure we get an accurate figure.)
I would really appreciate prayers about this. It's hard.
On the fitness front, I'm toying with the idea of joining Curves because there's one near my home & I can get membership for $25/month through my health insurance. Is that a good deal? The Curves website doesn't show any actual prices, which is annoying. (Of course I'm easily annoyed at the moment.) I don't want to enter all my contact info & then be subjected to endless promotional calls & e-mails. So if you have been a member, I'd appreciate hearing the scoop!
Get An Email Alert Each Time RUTHXG Posts