2017-08-11 Who Am I?

Today I dug a trench in my back yard and it’s almost ready for me to start doing the brick work. I also went for a bike ride and discovered where/how the Patio trail connects with the Keystone trail, so that 4th of July mystery has been solved. After that I took a nap and then went to Jazzercise which was closely followed by a walk at the high school track. It was a very full day indeed. Most of it, I spent alone.

Spending the day alone means lots of music in my ears and lots of thinking. I came to two conclusions…

The first is that I am really sick of the music on my phone and need some sort of introduction to something new. I don’t know if that means using a new app or something or just hanging out with different people who have different tastes.

The second is that it is sometimes difficult to define ones self. Who am I? If you take away my children, my job, my friends and family, and any ties to some partner in life, what am I left with? What do I like? As a person who is historically both a people pleaser and the most easy going/amiable to any plan, I’ve always gone with the flow. I’ve always done what other people have wanted me to do. When I am left alone, as I am now,  completely alone, who am I?

Today I chose a bike ride and some other exercise. I chose to work in my yard and ignore cleaning my house. I chose to write instead of read and I chose to be outside instead of inside. So is that who I am? What else is there? If someone were to ask me if there was anything in the world I could do what would it be? I don’t think I know. Does anyone know the answer to this for themselves? Does anyone really know who they are as a person or are we defined by our jobs and relationships?

I intend to find out who I am without my job, but I don’t want to separate myself from relationships because that’s my lifeline. That’s my safety net. As much as I feel over-burdened by my responsibilities to maintain my relationships sometimes, I would simply not know what to do without them. I would be lost and at risk of falling through without a net and potentially suffering some dire consequences.

OK, true confession time. It’s 9PM on a Friday and I’m all alone and getting ready for bed. I had two glasses of wine with my dinner of leftovers and am a little bit buzzed from that (yes, two glasses and that’s it). I’m about ready to go to bed for the night and tomorrow I am going to wake up and have all the same choices I had today. Will I chose the same things or try something new? Will I connect with people or remain alone for the day? Will I hang my hat on waiting for something to happen to me or will I go out and MAKE something happen. I don’t know. I don’t think I will know until tomorrow gets here and I’m right in the middle of it.

I guess if you really want to know, you will have to click back tomorrow and find out. Oh, now how is that for suspense? Haha!

Until Tomorrow. Gnight,
~Miss SugarCookie

2017-06-25 Full of Life

Yesterday was so jam packed with stuff that I barely had a minute to figure out how to get to the next thing let alone capture the one that had just happened. I wanted to, though, because there were several things that just felt so profound and were very inspiring. I could try to do a rundown of all of it now but it probably would not do it justice. Sometimes when the moment has passed, it has passed and trying to recount it just isn’t the same.

Perhaps I just list it (now that the secret about my list making is out in the open) and see where things go from there…

– I woke up at 6 (after about 4.5 hours of sleep)
– Jazzercise at 8:30
– I worked in my yard and started cleaning out and organizing my shed.
– Stopped at 10:30 so I could clean up to go downtown.
– I arrived at Kaneko at 11:30 for a writing workshop. That was two hours.
– 2 PM I arrived back home and was just physically and mentally exhausted, so I took a nap
– Woke up around 3:30 and decided to finish what I started with the shed.
– 5:PM back inside to clean up again and drive to Benson.
– Met Sam at 6PM at 1912 for a drink on the rooftop patio.
– 7:30 We wander into the concert area.
– We basically chatted and drank until the show started around 10.
– 11:30 PM the concert ended and I went home and promptly fell asleep.

That was a pretty full day.

The two best parts were the workshop and hanging out with Sam (my now former co-worker) in Benson. The concert was OK. I really like the band Blue October but the album I was really into was from back in 2008 or 2009 or something and they only played two songs from that. The rest of the songs were newer and though they were somewhat familiar, and good, it wasn’t the same.

For me, going to a live music show is about being one with the music in it’s purest form. Letting that thing you are so familiar with flow through you. You sway and sing along. You jump-jump and sing along. You hold your hands up in the air and sing along. It’s just not as good when you can’t sing along. That’s my bad though, when I used to seek out concerts, I would emerge myself in all the music for weeks before, but this time I didn’t do that. Quite honestly I have not had time.. which is a result of all the other things in my life. It is something I intend to remedy. Unless I find something else, the next concert is in October, and of course now I will have plenty of time to “prepare”. 😃

Anyway, despite my slight disappointment with the concert, it was great because it gave Sam and I like four hours to talk about so much. We have not had much of an opportunity to catch up lately. She’s got a lot going on and of course we had my situations to hash over. I need to try and make a point to keep in touch with people that I’ve worked with. I really value the connections I have made and need to make an effort to not let them fade away just because I won’t be seeing them every week.

The most impactful thing that I experienced yesterday was during the writing workshop at Kaneko. I’ll have to spend a little more time on that topic later though, because it’s time to get ready to head out to Jazzercise now.

And so It Begins Again,
~Miss SugarCookie

2017-04-11 On Music and Memory

Have you ever heard a song at it reminded you of a person or a place or a time in your life? Of course you have, because we are auditory creatures and we associate things we hear with other experiences we are having at the same time.

Tonight, when I was getting steps in at the gym and really just finishing up by doing some final laps around the pool, Bush started to sing Glycerine in my ear. I am not certain when that song or album came out but I do recall exactly where I was  when it was it first got stuck in my head.

The year was 1993 and I was living in Las Vegas. I was newly married to Brian who was stationed at Nellis AFB. We were on a Sunday bowling league on base and I remember hearing that song and subsequently hearing it over and over and over again. From that time forward, I always think of that time and that place when I hear that song. Tonight it made a rush of sadness wash over me and I really was not ready for that.

I’d been thinking about Facebook, you know, and how I recently saw Sandy’s picture. Her and Andrew got married and they have a couple of really cool snaps of the two of them together on their special day. That was the start of it. Then I hear this song and it reminds me I had my special day. I had my pictures. That was me like a gazillion years ago and it all went to shit.

It was so long ago I can’t remember how happy I was, or if I was even happy. I’m sure I was happy. Right? The lyrics to the song reverberate in my brain “don’t let the days go by…”

Then I can’t help but think “God Damnit, was that it? Was that my time and it’s gone now and I won’t ever have that again? Will I get another chance? Will something, someday, sometime happen to change things and I can have that feeling again? The feeling of being so loved by someone that they want to spend the rest of their life with you?”

I don’t have a crystal ball. I can’t even begin to contemplate how long life is and how may possible outcomes there are. It’s just a terrible feeling to hear a song and be reminded of something that should make you happy but instead it makes you sad. It’s like every picture and artifact I had to bundle up this past winter so as not to have constant reminders that I’ve failed again. Probably folks would say that I’m being too hard on myself, but failure is what it feels like.

Now I’ve been up for 18 hours and quite literally punch drunk from sleep deprivation and so hungry and not able to focus on anything. I’ll probably read this tomorrow and not be able to make any sense of it. At the very least, I need to go get some food.

I just hope the iPhone shuffle doesn’t have any more surprises for me. Might I suggest “Happy” by Pharrell Williams? Or some Buble to lull me to sleep?

Shuffle Me Up,
Miss SugarCookie

2017-03-29 Yes I Can

Yesterday I woke up in a funk.

I had more than 8 hours sleep which is outside the norm for me and yet I was groggy and did not feel well rested. I was sort of crampy and a lot grumpy and just generally feeling low and dumpy from what felt like 100 days of overcast weather in a row. But I let my mind be open. I embraced the “wait and see”.

At 8AM I was working from my bed trying hard to focus and wake up by listening to some jump-jump jams.

By 10 AM I was engaged in some heads down lab interface work… finding energy from the productivity.

By Noon I had a somewhat successful call with tangible takeaways with regards to a tough work issue. Any progress is good progress.

By 2PM I had two other projects elevated to a better status in the eyes of my customers. I always get satisfaction from knowing I’m helping make things go in the right direction.

By 4PM I was on may way for some Dunkin’ feels. Breaking the “no caffeine” spell to try and help with my persistent headache.

By 6PM I was playing tennis despite the weather and really got my blood pumping. I had completely forgotten how much my legs hurt when I woke up in the morning. This is when I mentally recognized I have the power.

By 8 PM I was getting my steps in by doing cardio at the gym, sustaining my good vibes about the day by going 3K over my daily step count goal.

Twelve hours and I had completely turned my frown upside-down. I didn’t actively try, I just kept an open mind about what the day would bring and did not let my negative start bleed into the tasks before me. So if you ask me if I have the ability to change my mood by sheer force of will, I will answer, “Yes I Can”.

I have the power to choose how to feel. 86400
That Was Yesterday.. Now what about today?

Just Getting Started,
Miss SugarCookie

2017-03-26 Sunday Stats + Choices

It’s been a while since I posted stats. So long, that I forgot what I was keeping track of. I’ve put a pause on tracking my food so I have nothing to report on for that. Feeling a bit setback the past 3 weeks, I’ve put more of a focus on sleep and exercise.

My step goal is 12,000 steps a day.
Today I scored 18,603 (so far). 😃
My average for the past 7 days is 12,936. 😃
My average for the past 28 days is 12,910. 😃

For sleep my goal is now 7 – 8 hours a night.
Last night I got 6 hours and 24 minutes.
My average last week was 6 hours and 57 minutes (so so close).
I had 5 days in the last week that were over 7 hours. 😃
I had 1 day in the last week that was over 8 (Magical!). 😃

All these stats are courtesy of my trusty FitBit.

I also cut caffeine a few weeks back and I’ve done a good job of sticking to that. I have had some chocolate which has some measure of caffeine in it and decaf espresso which I think does too.

Right I’m sitting in my bed listening to Phil Collins and Genesis. I’ve had a glass of wine, the first in many weeks, and thinking about my day, my weekend, and my life.

This reminds me of when I was in high school (minus the wine of course). Genesis and Phil were at the top of my charts and I spent many nights spinning those CDs from the boombox I kept on my bed. It had red and green lights for power and base boost and I remember sitting with my notebook and pen and writing and eventually turning out the lights. I would lay in the darkness and let the sound of the music lull me and eventually those lights got blurry and faded into black as I slipped into dreamland.

Not so different now. It’s a laptop instead of a notebook and an iPhone instead of a boombox, but the lights and the music are the same. And I’m still contemplating the meaning of life. I’m still thinking about what choices I have to make.

I could choose to be upset with myself for all the things I did not get done this past weekend, or I can choose to be happy with all of the things I did.

I can look to the past and regret the choices that I have made or I can see all the wonderful things about my life and recognize that it would not be possible without those choices. Everything I have done has lead me to now.

I can look into the future and fret about the choices I still have in front of me. There is a lot of uncertainty and there is risk. In that, there is also fear. Yes, I am afraid of wrong choices, but back it up a couple of sentences and see… It does not matter what I choose as that will lead me to tomorrow and it will be what it will be. I will still be me and life will go on.

I Choose This,
Miss SugarCookie

2017-03-11 Conundrums and Chaos

Where to start now? Well.. at the present moment I’m sitting in Flagship Commons and have about an hour and fifteen minutes to kill before the hoard of 15 year old girls I’m hosting today comes back around. It’s a mall scavenger hunt. Apparently that’s a thing.

There is too much going on here. Is this a mall food court? Is it lounge? Is it a sports bar? There are too many people and the music is too loud and not to my liking and there is a faint smell of different kinds of food being prepared lingering in the air. It’s hard not to just stop and watch the people and let your mind wander. This is a test. Can I still write something meaningful that makes sense. I guess we shall see.

Earlier today I took the girls to a place called House of Conundrum which has a set of “escape rooms”. You basically get a problem to solve and an hour to figure out all the clues to solve the problem. It was super fun, but there were a couple parts that were frustrating and we lost time because of that. My daughter is a pretty smart cookie and she’s got some smart friends and I think they would have been just as successful without me there to help. We got stuck on a picture puzzle where we had to translate the pictures into letters. We also stalled out because we solved one of the puzzles and the lock we put the combo in would not open and we tried it multiple times. In the end, we missed a clue that was hidden. It was tough but fun. I think the girls liked it. I would definitely do it again.

It’s a little bit of chaos running Z and her friends around, but so much better now that they are older. I can relate to these girls. We can turn the music up in the car and everybody knows the words. At home they are all laughing and telling jokes and making up nicknames for each other and it’s so awesome to see my daughter so happy. She worries too much about how things are going to go. “What we will do and who will show up” were things she’s been worrying about for a couple of weeks now and I can completely understand that anxiety. I feel it too. I don’t know if it’s a thing that ever goes away. Is it genetic? Is it just us? Or is it everybody.

I will certainly take the voices talking over voices and three conversations going on at once and running around a little wild and crazy. I will embrace the late nights divulging secrets and sleeping in late. I will gladly be the house that people can always walk to and hang out at after school if they need to. These times roll so fast and I know that and I want them to be remembered as good times. The teenage chaos will always be welcome in the house of Miss SugarCookie. I want her to have positive memories instead of what I have which is really not a lot of memories at all. I hope it’s possible.

I’m running on 5.5 hours of sleep again and even with all the stimuli surrounding me my eyes are weary and the words on the screen are blurring. I’m going to quit for now and just people watch.

2017-02-26 Sushi Sunday + Sister Time = Winning

The day today started out pretty good despite waking up with a nasty headache and skipping Jazzercise because of that. I took some meds and elected to stay in bed. I worked a little bit on my main blog and the organization of some of the pages and content. Later in the AM I made a nice home-cooked breakfast for my kids and then showered and got all prettied up to go out for the afternoon with my sister, Jamie. The same sister whose dog I looked after last night.

First we went for Sushi (because duh, what else would you have on Sushi Sunday) and then she had tickets to go see Pink Martini at the Holland Arts Center. The general crowd was much older than us and it was a 2PM show. I had no expectations and was thoroughly delighted. Most of the music was fun and full of energy and the singers very animated and amusing. Many of the songs were in foreign languages so props to them for having such a diverse set and doing what appeared to be a stellar job with all the accents. The backup music for the afternoon set was the Omaha Symphony, so that was also a treat.

There was one song in particular that they did which was a little melancholy and kind of made me weepy. Some random lyric about slowing life down and laying in the grass to listen to it grow. I don’t know. Maybe it was the music and maybe it was the 3 Purple Kimonos I had at Hiro, but it just made me really sad. Like sometimes I want so much for time to hurry up because I just can’t wait to get to the next thing that I’m not really stopping to enjoy the moment I am in right now. I was thinking “hey, girl, you need to enjoy life – what else are you here for?”.

I did, of course, very much enjoy my sister date and it’s always good to catch up after we have not seen each other one-on-one for a while. She’s a pretty amazing person and though there are miles of minutes between us, she is the person I am closest to in my family.

I gave her the rundown about the finale of things between Matt and I (and yes, I was wearing the ring), and she let me in on details about planning her honeymoon and also the start of their search to find a house. After our date she drove me home and the rest of my Sunday was very uneventful.

At the present moment, I’m really feeling the affects of only having 4.5 hours of sleep last night and probably will not be able to do much more with this day. But all things considered, I did successfully stop and enjoy many moments and that equates to winning.

Love Ya Sis,
Miss SugarCookie