2018-05-20 Long Lost Sunday Status Update

Let’s see.. its been a few weeks since I did a proper Sunday Status. It’s kind of a broken record thing anyway but here goes…

Exercise: Average 17k steps for the week. I’m hovering right around 14.5 k for the past month and 15k for the past 3 months and 16k so far this year. The count of Jazzercise classes continues to be low.. Only 2 this past week.

Food: Nothing ever changes. I’m still unhappy with things right now but apparently not unhappy enough to stick to any mods in the diet. The story is always the same. Ugh. I’m super pumped every day to make great choices and by the end of the day I’m on a slippery slide down a slope crashing into a pile of junk food at the bottom. My weight has also been a stupid number messing with my head even though my weight is fine, but the truer measure is how I feel when I look in the mirror. Right now I’m an unhappy camper. Clothes that don’t fit the same as they did last year and there’s me asking myself “does my butt look big”. It’s a trick question with no good answer. Damn. It’s time for setting concrete goals until I’m satisfied. As of today I’m about 7 lbs over my target 🎯 and so I’d like to loose 1 pound a week to get to that goal by July. Maybe I’ll try that Keto thing for a week and see how that goes. I dunno.

Sleep: Average of 7 hours and 5 minutes a night in the last week. Better than the previous weeks but I’d really like to hit 7.5 hours. See.. broken record.

Work: Still employed and trying to get those hours in so I can pay for that castle I live in and all my shiny red cars and trips to tropical destinations. 😜

School: Taking a break yo! No more to do until July.

And last but never least.. Relationship Status: Dating and happy and hopeful for the future. This week we both met each other’s kids and all that went perfectly. It’s a wonderful feeling being so doted over and treated like the most important thing in someone’s like. He’s so thoughtful and caring and everything a girl could ask for. At this point we are making plans for the Summer and going on our first vacation together. He wants to travel just as much as I do so that’s the bomb. I could go on and on, but I gotta cut and run.

Today I’m trying to get a good workout in because it’s “release” weekend at work so I’m on the hook for testing and documentation for that. Like I said.. gotta get those hours in when I can to pay for my life of luxury!

Happy Sushi Sunday,

~Miss SugarCookie

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2018-04-04 I Got Your Back

It’s taken a couple months but I feel like I have more than a foot in the door of my team. Of course my agenda has three primary goals..

#1 To have enough work to make a living. ✅

#2 To be productive and impress those I’m working with. (Half ✅ cuz this one is still a work i progress and kind of subjective).

#3 To Learn new stuff. ✅ Hopefully this will continue. It’s one of the things that will help keep me from being bored.

Yesterday I was looking forward to working on AWS Cloudwatch and dashboards and metrics. It’s super cool. I also had a meeting with my teammate responsible for building the AWS infrastructure and his goal (or so he’s been told) is to teach me enough to be his backup. To that I say.. “bring it!”.

He actually told me he thought I was full time and that my only role in the team was the AWS stuff. In my head I was like “uhhhh, that is not what they told me. And I was there when my contract was negotiated.” Still, job security.

Job security is the bomb. So I’ll have his back and that’s me stepping further into that space. At the same time I, apparently, have other people’s backs too. I’m sort of the tertiary backup as a planner/communicator (PM). I’ll also be responsible for assisting in testing and QA now too. This is all in addition to my original title of “Technical Writer”.

As I get into a good groove staying on top of all of that.. weekly status, release notes, production metrics, spec and run book updates.. I’ll be positioned perfectly to support operations in a technical capacity. At that point, I’ll be so deep in that I’ll have everyone’s back. Well.. everyone but the developers because that’s one job I’m not qualified to do. Not without some training anyway.

The only fine line I have to walk is balancing work and school and parenting (and my heath and other relationships). Talking with a friend yesterday, RH, who also happens to be a former co-worker from my last job I was kind of reminded how crazy it can be when you are so deep in it and responsible for multiple jobs and initiatives.

I’m the only one who is going to be able to balance things out; to push back when things become too much or unreasonable. Kinda like when I was asked what my availability for testing was over Easter weekend. Um.. no.

After the minimal work hours I put in last week, I definitely need to kick it up a notch today. And, thankfully I have a full set list to pull from.

Sadly, I am going to have to miss several really cool events going on this month (April is National Poetry Month). Today there is a reading at a university near by with 14 local poets and I’m not going to be able to go. It’s in the middle of the day and it just won’t be possible with Work. Who schedules that stuff in the middle of a Wednesday??!

Anyway, White Stripes probably said it best in their song ‘Little Cream Soda’, “Oh well, oh well, oh well, oh well”.

So Profound. 😉

Back to Work,

~Miss SugarCookie

2018-02-21 The One About Dates

3 2s
2 0s
2 1s
1 8

Among all the ideas, problems, people, and feelings my brain forces itself to contemplate relentlessly are numbers. I’m on day three with my current analysis about dates(ironically, I’m referring to calendar dates). I’ve counted the numbers, the occurrence of certain numbers, written them forward and backward, and even tried to attach some cosmic significance to them. Whatever brain!

This might lead a person to believe that 1.) I’m a smidge cray-cray (perhaps) and 2.) I have too much time on my hands (ummm… never).

My brain was built for analytics. Number crunching. The application of logic to extract data and apply aesthetics to it in order to make it meaningful is an incredibly satisfying process. This happens to be a huge benefit in my line of work but, as it turns out, not as helpful in my personal or creative endeavors.

Facing reality, nobody is going to be interested in the poem I wrote on February 18th, 2018. But look how beautiful the numbers are…

20180218

Two 2s
Two 0s
Two 1s
Two 8s

Quick.. somebody call Fox News. That’s fair and balanced! Except, never mind – Fox dropped that motto in 2017 when they realized they were neither fair nor balanced and didn’t really want to be.

There’s only one thing missing in this common configuration of the date and that’s the elegance of the palindrome. However, thinking about that leads me to explore other formats…

02182018 If you are American and don’t give a shit about alphabetical listings in chronological order. Let’s hope you have date/time stamp in your metadata.

18022018 If you are across “the pond”. Probably the most satisfying configuration for this instance but also not programatically useful.

And then back to CCYYMMDD. My peeps in Lithuania get it. Virtual fist-bump yo!! 👊

It’s not just about dates though. The numbers!.. They are EVERYWHERE.

Duration and incline and resistance and distance on my elliptical machine for example. It’s helpful to calculate percentages, level of overall effort, and to track progress on goals.

Temperature. My friend Leah knitted a scarf last year where every 5 degree temp was assigned an appropriate color of yarn. The range was an array of colors from deep cool colors like violet and blue to warm orange and then red hot. Each day, she added another row to the scarf based on the temperature of the day. It’s amazing and beautiful!!

Other than that, temperature is only good for deciding what to wear on any given day or deciding where to move when you’ve had just about enough of violet (like Now).

It probably goes without saying that I dig my personal stats, or rather my ability to know them, record them, and use them to measure my progress. I track sleep and my steps and count Jazzercise classes. I’d count calories too if it wasn’t so time consuming (or more accurately if I thought it was useful info, which it isn’t). I’ve thought about upgrading my FitBit to the Alta HR that also tracks heart rate. That would be super cool. I added it to the wishlist of things I can consider buying when I can afford buying things again. Ahhh, finances. That is a whole other category of numbers I love to crunch regularly. And age.. 59.5 so near yet so far.

Back to dates though. That’s the topic of my current analysis. 2017 was an odd year and there were a lot of rotten dates and 2018 isn’t looking any better (yes, actual dates with dudes). As such, I’m really ok with my mind focusing on some different dates. Dates where every first date is also the last and they don’t leave you feeling rejected or somehow not good enough.

With this in mind, I can look at today with a wink and a smile knowing what joy it holds within its 24 glorious hours instead of the suffering that swiping right brings.

Don’t even get me started on tomorrow!! Oh the 2’s!! 😜

When in Doubt Swipe Left,
~Miss SugarCookie

PS… Holy shit the number of occurrences of each number almost make up the number itself. That’s wild and I AM crazy – 2 0s 1 8, (3 2s) 2 1s

2018-01-27 A Whole 30 Rant

Spoiler alert.. if you didn’t catch it from the title, I’m about to poke a hole in the Whole 30 program. If you don’t want the truth.. quit reading now. Ignorance is bliss. 😜

Today is Day 20 of a 30 day attempt to “reset” my body by eating Whole Foods only. I’m trying to follow the guidelines set by the official Whole 30 program which, at the most basic level, includes eating only Whole Foods and cutting out a very specific list of things.

No added sugar, no soy or products made with soy, no dairy, no alcohol, no legumes, no beans, and no grains. This is so far beyond paleo it’s out of control. There are, however, details in the fine print that are not to be dismissed and therein lies the rub for me.

(The damn devil and his constant dance with details. Curse that jerk.)

Before I dive into the one detail that has been my undoing, I’m going to elaborate on my original goals.

1. The reset. I want to flush my body if all the bad stuff. I’m not sure that’s achievable in 30 days as it takes months to begin to undo damage done to the gut from gluten. However, any surface level toxins should definitely be gone in 30 days time.

2. Check my sugar addiction. I’ve got a healthy sweet tooth and it’s a problem. I have sugar cravings like you would not believe and it’s a constant battle of wills to resist temptations.

3. To support my sister who also wanted to do the program. We discussed it before Christmas last year and that’s when I originally committed to starting on the 8th of January. It’s easier to stick with it if you have a support system and a voice of reason when your brain tries to convince you to quit.

4. To prove that I could. Yeah.. that’s me. I’m always trying something new and I see it as a challenge. People say it’s tough, so I wanted to do it just so I could say I did. Ha!

5. Learn how to shop for, plan for, and cook healthy meals.

Noteworthy… Missing from this list is any goal of losing weight. I’m mostly satisfied with that and don’t count that as a valid measure of health for myself anyway. If I end up losing those last 5 lbs. that seem to always be out of reach, then so much the better but it’s not my goal.

I’m now 20 days in and am feeling somewhat discontent with the “whole” thing. I’ve had serious cravings and outlasted them all. I’ve spent afternoons thinking about tortilla chips and chocolate. I could not have made it this far without #3 and #4 above. Which just proves that the force is strong with the virtues of both. In that, I feel I’ve already proved something and when this 30 days is over, will consider the experiment a success despite the issues surrounding the rest of it.

So what are those issues? That takes me back to the devil and the fine print. And believe me, I’ve done a deep dive into the rules and read the official word on tortilla chips, RX bars, and coconut aminos.

I think it was day 7 or 8 that my sister cooked me a delicious turkey chili with roasted squash topped with guacamole. It was amazing. During our conversation, she mentioned RX bars which I had not known about previously. She explained how they were approved because they are made with only Whole ingredients and no unapproved items. She also used the words “emergency food” but I glossed over that convieniently.

The next time I was at the grocery, I bought some. They are awesome (really expensive, but also really good). The ingredients are dates, egg white, almond, cashew, and whatever else depending on the flavor. The number 1 ingredient is dates, which are loaded with sugar. It’s pretty much like eating a candy bar. How can that be OK?

As it turns out, it’s not. It’s only approved in emergency situations. The “stranded on the tarmac” kind and not intended to be used casually after a meal like a brownie or to scratch that late night craving itch. Epic fail on my part. That’s why understanding ALL the rules up front is so important.

Even as an emergency food, I have a problem with it. It’s still processed and that is counter to the spirit of the program. If I can’t bake something with almond flour, then how is it ok to eat this processed bar? If I can’t eat a tortilla chip made of corn, sunflower oil, and sea salt then why is the RX ok? It should be banned along with several other things that are deemed ok.. because they ARE processed and not whole foods.

And while I’m on a soapbox anyway, let’s be real.. “Emergency?!?”. What emergency?

How tough is it to pack a bag with nuts and maybe fruit like apples or cuties? Shouldn’t we just do ourselves a favor and really learn how to make healthy things and prepare in advance for life? Aren’t all those fast food comvieniences part of the systemic problem facing our society today?

It’s just easier to drive through a place and pick up a meal than to have fresh, healthy ingredients on hand in the kitchen and foresight to plan and cook something good. It’s just easier to feed that mid-day hunger pang with a “nutrition” bar than to have, on hand, some better alternative.

I fell into the trap and sadly, the RX Bar bit me in the ass. I started using it as a crutch daily and a few times twice. Shame on me. I’ve since decided to finish out my last 10 days with a tighter rein on some rules.

Nothing but Whole Foods and no processed bars or dried fruit. I’m also going to limit my fresh fruit intake to 3 servings a day. Hopefully I can still achieve #2 on my list above and hopefully I will feel a difference in SOMETHING, which so far I have not. If I can’t FEEL something different.. better as a result, then what’s the point?

I want more energy and better sleep and less issues with hormones and headaches and I’ve read stories by other people who achieve that in this program. I’m just not feeling it. My sister tells me that’s probably because I ate somewhat healthy before. Perhaps that’s true.

Anyhow, Normally I subscribe to the concept that ignorance of the rules is no excuse for breaking them, but in this case, if I can be successful these last 10 days, I’m going to consider this round a success.

If I counted my RX habit breaking a rule, then I would just quit now (and probably not try again anytime soon). So I have to think about it as I am in order to finish the 30 days.

Ok.. flame 🔥 off.

It’s the weekend. Time to go enjoy the day!

Peace and love,

~Miss SugarCookie

2018-01-21 Sunday Status Update

Sleep.. Average 8 hours and 14 minutes last week. That’s freaking amazing!!! The consistency is getting better and I think that’s a direct result of my diligence and really establishing a great routine. It’s only January and I’m already hitting my goal! 😴😊✅🎉

Eating.. Still on the Whole 30. Today is Day 14. I’m almost half way there and still love eggs. I’ve perfected my guacamole and have established a planning/cooking routine that works. Evenings (between 7 and bedtime) are the toughest to fight through cravings. I’m probably eating too many fruits and nuts but that’s going to have to be ok.

Exercise.. 18,615 average steps per day. Four Jazzercise classes and back up to 8 pound free weights in class.

Employment status.. I didn’t quite hit 20 hours this week. That’s got to change.

Relationship status.. Single.

Student status.. I’m a full time student trying to get it done on part time hours. This has to change too. I need to ramp things up and put in some serious reading in the next week.

This week I’m looking forward to lunch with Sam today, Amy on Tuesday, and a family Birthday lunch on Wednesday with my mom and sisters. It will really be the first test of eating at restaurants on this Whole 30 plan. I definitely see some salads in my future.

Time to Hit it and Git it!

~Miss SugarCookie

2018-01-08 Today is a Good Day to Start

This is one of the tag lines on the blog I started in 2010. I think it’s a thing I tried to tell myself more than saying it to anyone else because I often use excuses why I’m not doing something.

* it’s not the start of the week or month.

* I’ve got all this food in my refrigerator I don’t want to go to waste.

* I won’t have time.

* I can’t afford it.

* I’m afraid of what people will think.

The biggest hurdle I have is getting out of my own way. Sometimes those excuses are valid, but most of the time I just need to strike through all of it and say to myself.. “Today is a good day to start”.

As we enter a new year I find myself more open than ever to the possibilities of life. I just started a new job. I just started back to school and on top of that, I’ve also committed to starting something else.. 30 days of eating only Whole Foods.

That’s right. I’m doing the whole 30 diet which will not require too much extra time aside from planning meals and grocery shopping, which I have to do anyway. What it will require is willpower.

This way of eating was totally meant for me because I’m a meat and potatoes girl at heart. However, I am addicted to sugar and love cheese. Not having alcohol will not be a problem but the whole thing will make social events, lunches out and such, a challenge.

I think doing something like this is only possible with the support from the members of your household and close family and friends. Not only are they there to encourage but also hold accountable. My sister and I are doing this together and now my friend Becky is making it a trio. I wish more people would join us but nobody at Christmas events seemed all that interested.

I think it’s also important to have rewards and celebrate success. I have yet to define that because I’ve pretty much put myself on serious monetary restriction for the foreseeable future. I need to find something I can reward myself with that doesn’t cost money. That’s going to take some deeper consideration for sure.

Today is Day 1. We wanted to wait for things to settle after the new year to start. Now, here it is, Monday. The start of a new week and essentially my first day wearing my big girl pants again. I’ll be working on turning in my lecture notes from residency and my kids are coming back home after a long break apart. But I can’t let any of that become an excuse not to start.

On the contrary. I want to propose the opposite.. today isn’t just a good day to start. It’s a great one!

Cheers to new Beginnings (with water of course),

~Miss SugarCookie

2018-01-07 Sushi Sunday Funday Status Update – A Year in the Rearview

It’s Sunday January 7th, 2018 and my gym is swarming with resolutionaries but I’m not there yet because I’m still catching up from last week.

I’ve not had time to reflect deeply on 2017, but I think that’s ok because I spent so much time on it throughout the year. I was evaluating my status and goals every couple of weeks and it goes without saying (because I have said it often this past year), but I’m in such a better place, physically and mentally now.

My left-brain, lover of Stats has this to say about 2017…

231 Jazzercise Classes

Up 3 lbs in handheld weights in class (now at 8lbs).

5,480,146 steps. Just over 15k per day.

That’s freaking awesome.

An average of 7 hours and 25 minutes sleep per night. This is also amazing, but I’m somewhat shocked by this and may go back and check the data.

Lots of attempts at changing my diet.. and zero change in my weight. Don’t misunderstand, the weight is not important.. it’s the only measure I have. Perhaps I’ll do body fat % again sometime soon to see if I really did add more muscle like I think I did.

Relationship status daily average: Single 😜

Employment status daily average: Part time. I spent half a year at full time and half a year unemployed.

I’d like to calculate how many miles I travelled.. but there’s not an app I’ve been using for that and it would take too much time to do manually. I’ll just name my destinations:

Cancun Mexico for my sisters wedding, Kiehei Hawaii on the island of Maui, Phoenix, Austin (x2), Denver (x2), Seattle, Portland, The Redwood Forest in Northern Cali, Highway 101 in the Pacific Nortwest, Saint Louis, Beatrice Nebraska for the Totality, and finally, Nebraska City Nebraska for the inaugural trip for my MFA.

Whew!

Consequently, my bank account is now 30k lighter. Financial status is still holding steady at stable.

And last, but certainly not least, my main goal to live every day inching closer and closer to a happy and fulfilling existence was, for the most part, met with success. This could not been made possible without the help of the writing I have done for this blog.

337 blog posts

1399 visitors

2191 views

1166 likes

11 comments

And 84 followers.

Thank you to all who have read and liked and stuck with me in my little blogging adventure. You are all awesome!

And without further ado, welcome to 2018!

Lets Rock and Roll this Bitch!

~Miss SugarCookie