Wednesday, February 01, 2012
I used to have this little gadget on the sink that provided instant hot water (well, I still have it, but little gadget + very hard water = not working) and I always loaded the coffee machine the night before and set the instant start thingee, but stopped doing that when I stopped getting up at regular scheduled times. Last night I didn't set up the coffee, and this morning was debating whether I wanted coffee or tea - since the coffee is frequently already there, I rarely drink tea even though I enjoy it. I make it properly - warm pot, loose tea, strainer and all that.
This morning I heard myself say - and three cats will stand witness to this - "If I'm going to go to the trouble of boiling water, I may as well have tea."
This isn't about tea or cats (although I can go on at great length about either or both of those as well, and undoubtedly will, sooner or later.) It's about the fact that I don't like to cook, particularly, and consider it a waste of time to do so for myself. This is a real problem.
I'd heard of all these "old people" who didn't bother to cook for themselves. At the time I was young and had a houseful of family and neighbors and workers, and while I still didn't especially like to cook, did so cheerfully enough. I thought people who wouldn't bother to cook for themselves were pitiful and silly.
My mother was widowed twice, married three times, and between husbands she always cooked really nice, properly balanced meals for herself. Even if she occasionally allowed herself a Stauffer's frozen stuffed pepper, she'd balance it out with a salad and a whole grain roll or something. I always teased her about trying out new recipes for future husbands - which actually turned out to be true often enough - but she'd counter with, "What, you think I'm not worth it?" and of course, she was right. We can't blame her for this issue.
It isn't, I swear, an issue of self-esteem. It isn't that I consider myself unworthy of decent food - it's just that it's such a lot of *bother* when I'd really rather be doing other things. Plus, cooking generates dishes to wash, which I also reallyreallyreally don't like (the automatic dishwasher having gone the way of the little hot water gadget.) I don't particularly care for frozen prepackaged foods, especially now that the microwave has quit (I haven't replaced it because I really only ever used it as a breadbox and to thaw the occasional thing - don't read anything into all of these broken Things. )
I've gotten better in the last six months - when I cook, I still make the full recipe and then portion the extra out and freeze it or save it for later in the week. (I ate for lunch the leftovers of the previous night's dinners for years - if there were no leftovers, I never knew quite what to do.) But doing all this cooking and washing up - three meals a day plus, perhaps, a snack, - for someone who could happily live on cheese, crackers and carrot sticks with the odd baked potato thrown in, seems like asking a lot.
Perhaps the problem isn't in the doing but in the planning, or lack of planning. Very often I'm engrossed in whatever I'm doing, hear my tummy rumble, check the clock and it's already half past dinnertime, and I have nothing going. It'd take another hour to bake a potato, I don't really eat that many sandwiches, and besides, there's probably nothing in the house that would easily generate a meal anyway. No meat sitting, waiting to be broiled. No cleaned up vegetables (although they are generally in the refrig, slowly wilting away, because I do buy things with the best of intentions) ready to be steamed. No food. In other words, a decent meal is at least an hour away, assuming I can think of something to make from whatever bits are on hand, so it's beans on toast again, side of carrot sticks.
I suspect that the part of the brain assigned the task of planning is also the part that is willing to track, and in my own brain that part seems woefully inadequate. I've been trying to track my food since the first time I ever went on a diet (1988, postpartum) and do you know what my longest streak is? Four days. FOUR DAYS. Planning usually falls down because by Wednesday, what sounded good on Sunday isn't appealing anymore.
I have to wrap this up before I come to any real conclusions because, as usual, I've been rambling on way too long but also because I have three books I've sold on Amazon and I have to get them wrapped and out the door in time for the post. Sure, I could have done that this morning, but I didn't. I didn't exercise, either, because it was nasty out and I was engrossed in..whatever the hell it was that I was doing.
And there, gentle reader, is the revelation: I seem to lack planning and the self-discipline to stick to any plan I might make. The next question, of course, if how to correct these issues.
(And the first person who comments with "A failure to plan is a plan to fail" will be...well, shot might be a bit harsh, but will ...well, something bad will happen, so don't.)
(Edited because I hate typos.)
Thursday, January 26, 2012
This is a short - like 3 1/2 minute - film from Cornell Ornithology labs on Snowy Owls.
Here's the link for the Cornell Labs' Ornithology home page - interesting stuff to look at, learn, even participate in if you want.
Thursday, January 26, 2012
I need to lose a few pounds and lay off the cocktails. Gee, who would ever have guessed?
Everything else is somewhere between okay and excellent - looks like I've got some tread left on me after all, so I guess I'll be around to wreak havoc for another few miles, anyway.
Good to know, though.
Thursday, January 19, 2012
This is something that has been bothering me for a long time, not just here on Spark People, but out in the world as well.
Diet and exercise programs - or lifestyle changes, or whatever you want to call them - are being referred to as "regimes". It's not a "regime" - it's a "regimen". Probably same roots - I'm not going to search out the etymology - but they are *not* the same thing.
A regimen is commonly used to refer to a health plan - a way of eating and exercising or living in general that promotes healthy development. A regime, on the other hand, is a ruling political situation. It usually has a negative connotation, although I'm not sure if that's necessarily the case, and again, I'm too lazy to look it up.
But unless a South American dictator (we'll go with the negative connotation here) is holding a pistol to your head and ordering you to do push-ups, your new healthy lifestyle is a 'regimen", not a "regime", and I don't care who says it the other way around.
Next: forte ("fort" vs "for-tay")
Saturday, January 14, 2012
I was awake anyway, so it didn't make me too crazy to have to put the dog out at 4:30 in the morning. Dog went out, cats gathered around - hey, it's early, but feed us anyway! - and I noticed spots of blood on the floor. I looked at all three sleepy but hungry faces, and no one looked particularly off, so I assumed it had to be the dog that was bleeding from....somewhere. Then I noticed that the little blood spots went to the door and back again....but the dog was still out.
Weird. Cats seem okay....dog is still out ...there's no one left but....me! I lifted up one foot and peered at it - nothing there. Lifted the other one and sure enough, the bottom of the big toe is all bloody. And it's still bleeding, so it's not a ding, it's like a..slice. I washed it off, couldn't see or feel anything there, put some Neosporin on it and a couple bandaids. You know, it's hard to work on the inside of your own toe - harder than it used to be, certainly.
By daylight I'll have to conduct a search to see what it was that I sliced my toe on. I suspect it was glass, because I didn't feel it. My house has a certain "permanent construction zone" feel to it, plus rambunctious critters, so anything's possible. *shrug*
This is why people should sleep at night - it's dangerous to be out of bed.
EDIT: 7:15 a.m.
AHA! I believe I've found the toe slashing culprit. My house has wide (18" to almost 30", some of them - can you imagine the *trees?*), plank floors, and there are fairly wide gaps between some of the planks. Just now I was coming back in from filling the outdoor wood furnace and saw something shiny. Bent down to examine it and discovered a shard of what appears to have been one of the 1" diameter Christmas balls, lodged in between two of the boards. I thought I vacuumed thoroughly, but apparently not thoroughly enough.
I probably ought to fill in those cracks at some point, but I refuse to polyurethane the floors (just because I think it's criminal to poly something this old - it makes them look fake somehow) and haven't figured out what to use yet. It'll go on the job list, but somewhere down near the bottom.
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