Tuesday, February 28, 2012

It's that kind of Tuesday

It's that kind of Tuesday! The busy one, the at least it's not Monday one.

6:15- Alarm goes off. Lay in bed for a bit and then finally get up. Have to be early/on time today. Get ready.

7:12 run out the door to catch the 7:13 bus. I miss it. Go back to the house and put on my mascara since I didn't finish my makeup. I am taking the bus because I have a meeting on campus that has little to no parking available nearby. And is close to a bus stop.

7:27 make this bus. Do some reading on the ride.

8-12 Attend long meeting. My boss is facilitating. It is long, has over 40 participants but he keeps things on track and we accomplish most of our objectives. Generally he is great to work for because I learn a lot from him. He is a good presenter, good conflict mitigator, and can take really confusion, jarbled, not so clear language and re-state it in ways that make sense to everybody. I feel like I am a decent communicator- but I really want to figure that out.

12-1 Grab lunch with some coworkers after the meeting. We mostly de-brief on how the meeting went. Against my better judgement I order rosemary asiago fries with my pulled pork sandwich. So delicious.

1-3:30 Catch up on email. Follow up ins few items. Forward my notes from the meeting to a few people.

3:30-3:45 meet with my boss briefly I like to sync with him every few weeks to make sure I am focused on the right things and just check in generally. Things are good.

4-5 Do some more work at my desk

5-6 Meet with one of my clients to review a document I produced. Make a few changes to the document during the meeting.

6-7:15 - Leave Work... Take a bus to my polling place. Vote in the Presidential Primary. I was the only one there, and apparently the 12th voter they had that day (out of 1600 or so in the precinct). So sad! But the precinct I am registered in is mostly students, and it is spring break. I liked voting, but again would rather be in Florida. Run to catch a bus home from there. I am 10 feet from the bus and it drives away. UGH! Wait and get on another bus. It leaves, then mysteriously turns around and goes back to the original bus stop and just sits for 5 minutes. On the phone with John at this point, he comes to pick me up. We head to McDs and have dinner (shameful I know. Figures the week I am doing full disclosure we eat out at mcdonalds.) We run home and I change for my  tap class and take off.

7:30 - 8:30 - Go to my tap class. I love taking tap again. It's amazing how you remember things you learned when you were younger. Generally I have forgotten very little, tap dancing is like riding a bike to me. We start learning our recital number to Michael Jackson's "Bad". Yes. I am dancing in a recital. No, I will likely not be passing out tickets so you can watch me embarrass myself.

8:45 - 10:00 Get home, hang with John. We play Agricola again (need to give this game back now... it is addicting...) We both do really well in the game but alas he wins. We go to bed and both read again until we fall asleep.

Since I was a slacker and didn't post last night -- I can add a few more details from overnight:

11:30 pm - Cat wakes John up with Scratching. (As in our bed skirt, right by our heads)

12:30 am- Cat wakes me and John up with Meowing (John kicked him out after previous disturbance).

1:00 am - Cat wakes John up with meowing.

1:30  am- Cat wakes John up with meowing. John lets cat back in room because he is tired of meowing.

2:30  am- Cat wakes me and John up with scratching, jumping on top of us, meowing etc. John says -- "This is the Fourth Time he has woken me up!!! What are we going to do???" I take cat to kitty prison -- ie the guest bathroom where his litter box is. Far from our room where we cannot hear him cry. He has never gone to kitty prison before, but he has never been so intent on keeping us up all night.

Did I mention I am nervous how we will handle a baby keeping us up all night? If we can't handle a kitty? Oh my.

Hope you had a great  Tuesday.

Monday, February 27, 2012

Case of the Mondays...

6:40 am- cat wakes me up 40 min before alarm clock. Throw cat out of room and attempt to go back to sleep.

7:20- Try to get out of bed. Why do I have a job again? Why do I have to wake up? Why is my bed so warm and everything else so cold?

740- Actually get out of bed. Jump in the shower. Get dressed, pack a lunch real quick. Hair is thrown up-- slept in too late for the hair dryer (story of my life).

8:30- Finally leave for work. I am pretty consistently late on Monday's and Friday's. Ugh! Need to get better...

9:00- 12 - Catch up on email, take care of a few things on my to do list. Log in to our project planning tool and check out the timeline's for all the projects in the program I help run. Nobody's timeline's have shifted, so very minimal updates to my weekly schedule report. Spend a little bit more time discussing with John on gchat  re: something we talked about this morning. Also spend about 10 minutes somewhere in there looking for last minute Florida vacations. I have a case of the Monday's and need the beach ASAP.

12-1:15 - Weekly Working Lunch. I eat some leftover feijoada (brazilian black bean dish) and some salad. I am trying to be healthy again (oh the ebbs and flows of weight loss attempts)... Working lunch is productive. We each review our focus for the week - mine is 1)Reviewing requirements for 3 specific projects & providing feedback, 2) Getting my head around testing and how we are going to role out an approach, 3) Wrapping up the loose ends of the Business Service Definition work I did a few months ago.

1:15 -2 - Double check I am all set to vote in Michigan's primary tomorrow. I have to call the clerk, because I am registered to vote under my maiden name. They think it will all work out okay-- we will see tomorrow. Get some  more work done.

2:15 -  Go downstairs to buy a water bottle... and somehow also come upstairs with an ice cream bar. GAH! Frustrating. Why do they sell things like that? And why did I have enough money in wallet to buy both? Decide to trash all of my girl scout cookies. YES, I know there are Starving Kids in Africa. I cannot keep these near my desk any longer. Thinking more clearly, instead of trashing them I  hand a few boxes to a colleague and then open a box and put in the "common treat ground" for anyone who wants them. Plus, this might tip the scale for my boss who swore of sweets last week and has some kind of sickeningly awesome will power... It is kind of a competition we are having now (again, I am epically failing) I think he should coach and mentor me less on my consultant skills and more on will power. Maybe they have seminars for this kind of thing? Will Power 101: How to ignore the chocolate that is talking to you. SIGN ME UP!

Shanghai Beef Stir Fry. YUM
2:30 - Tempting snacks and sweets eliminated from working space. Back  to being productive (ish). Do more work throughout the afternoon. The week is starting out a little slow.
6-7 Have our weekly team meeting. Not eventful Head home afterwards.

7-8 Make shanghai beef stir fry for dinner. This is one of the many freezer meals I made with friends last week. I love having ready made meals. John teaches piano and I start cutting some fabric for a new project while dinner finishes.

8-10:15 John and I enjoy dinner and we have family home evening. I attempt to play the piano for the song, and teach a lesson on love. We talk about how showing love though action can sometimes be more powerful than just saying it. We also discuss family business every fhe, so we go through everything from finances, upcoming meals, our calendars and any vacations we want to plan. I mention my Florida research, and we talk about maybe trying to take a short (less tropical) road trip this weekend. We watch a documentary about the puppeteer of Elmo for the activity (my original plan to make our own putt putt course fell through).

I have an early am tomorrow so off to bed. John is going to read me some Harry potter until we fall asleep.

Happy Monday.

Sunday, February 26, 2012

Spiritually Nourished Sunday

7:45-John gets up and reminds me every 20 min that I should too. Did I mention that I am not a morning person? I eventually get up, straighten my hair and get dressed for church.

me after church. in case you wanted
 some pictures with all of this writing
9-10:15- We enjoy sacrament meeting a lot today. It is a fast day, which means we have a testimony meeting. There are two baby blessings- one for our very good friends' baby girl. The blessings are so beautiful. Something about baby blessings always bring me to tears, they brings such a special spirit to our meeting. I bear my testimony on how we are given the choice each day to start again at goals, and that we can choose to live the gospel each day. Many testimonies focus on the family, there is definitely a special spirit in the room.
10-11- As one of my callings I teach a Sunday school class for new members or people interested in learning about the church (or people who love the basics like me!) Today we discuss charity, and how it is the pure love of Christ and is an attitude or virtue we can each work on developing. I really love the class I have and learn a lot from teaching.

pretty flowers at my friends house.

11-12- Relief society (meeting with all women) is great. We talk about having to stand alone in what we believe in. I spend a lot of time reflecting on times when I have had to stand alone. One of the key messages was that we are really never alone. Our father in heaven is always with us, and will comfort us. I really felt the spirit so strongly at church today.
12-1 - choir practice. Singing while fasting makes me feel woozey. But it ends early.
1-2 went to visit a friend as a part of visiting teaching. We had some great conversation.
215- 430 -Get back home, chat with John, take a nap (or try to... Myao Myao wants to play and pounces on anything that flinches at all... Namely feet.) Also wake up and get a salad and dessert together for dinner.

515-715- pick up a friend and go to another family's house to enjoy a delicious dinner ( bring the salad and dessert along, we made mango sorbet for dessert. I think it was a hit as their 2.5 year old daughter ate hers, her dads, and tried to lick the bowl...). Enjoyed some great conversation.

my agricola board game. woo hoo.
7:15- 8. Head home. Spend some time relaxing, putting away leftovers and just talking.

8:15 -11:15 - Head over to some friends house and hang out for a bit, then play Agricola (remember, we borrowed it :) !) I got an awesome card that made it easier to play, so I ended up winning.

11:15- ? On the drive home we listen to scriptures together. In Exodus still Moses's father in law Jethro is giving him counsel. Now finishing this post and off to bed. Maybe more Harry Potter reading from John.

Happy Sunday!

Saturday, February 25, 2012

Simple Saturday

7:30 John has a Bball game at 8 am so he leaves the house pretty early. I didn't notice him leaving as I was zonked out, but he called me on accident as he left which I picked up. I fell back asleep. I love sleeping in.
one of my favorite things about weekends is seeing myao myao
 in his natural habitat (and disturbing his sleep for a change!)

9:30 John comes back and I am still laying down. Lazy much? We chat a bit and he falls asleep. I read for a bit and probably catch a few more z's.

11 ish- Get dressed and eat a quick lunch- more leftover rice bake. I get ready to go play my weekly church Bball game.

12- 1:15 intense basketball game. Goes into overtime. I score 6 Pts, woo hoo!

1:30- Get home stretch for a bit. Chill at home, read a bit more, take a shower, chat with John for a while.

350ish- meet some friends for sledding. Go down a few runs and decide that hill is not much fun to climb up. And your tail bone hurts.

Head to friends house for hot chocolate- morphs into dinner and games. We enjoy yummy pizza and Agricola, one of my new favorite games (I still have not quite figured his one out yet.)

8:20- leave friends to head to library and drop some books off. Heading home.

quick i phone photo after sledding.
9-10 ish- do some housework. Do the dishes and then do 15 min each of our chore of the days. John tackles the bedrooms while I focus on dusting and de-cluttering our living room. The beauty of the 15 min chore schedule is we only ever have to do 15 min a day, but often we want to do more as we like seeing the house cleaned. I throw in a load of laundry.

10- 10:30 John dreams up his next leather project (he just made himself an awesome scripture case)! He is going to make me a laptop bag and shows me different ideas. I do some more reading.

10:30-11 We watch the most recent office episode. It makes fun of equating pets to kids. We laugh, not that we think they are at all the same, but that our Myao Myao sometimes has baby like qualities (frequently waking us up at night, general mis behaving...) Anyway, this was something we chatted with our friends with earlier so it is funny. Afterwards we head to bed. I tried to convince John to play Agricola with me to no avail. We are going to read Harry potter until we fall asleep, right after I finish this post.

Hope you all had a nice Saturday.

Friday, February 24, 2012

Snowy, Wintery Friday

Inspired by one of my good friends, I thought it would be fun to do a more detailed memoir for the next week of my day to day activities. If anything it will be a good writing exercise. Enjoy...

Friday --Today is a Work from Home day- mostly because i have no meetings, it's snowy, and I did too many hours over the rest of the week so I needed a shorter day.

- Wake up around 8 - chat with John before he goes to work for a bit and then put some warm clothes on (we keep our house around 61-- you need socks and sweats to stay home all day.)

Log on my computer around 8:45. How did I get so many emails overnight? Phew-- only a few of them require immediate attention.

9:15 - ish. Begin work on a weekly status report for our team. Phew! All of my colleagues updated their stuff so I don't have to spend any time being "Kristin the Status Report Nag" as is often the case Friday AMs. Also send an email to all of the Virtual Biggest Loser participants to remind them to log their weight tomorrow. This is the 8th week of the contest. Notice I am pretty far down on the ranking, but my Mom and John are in 1st and 2nd. Do I get to take credit for all the weight everyone else lost-- if I didn't lose much? LOL

My first bitty box. Lots of yummy loot under there.
9:20 ish - Door bell rings. Our first delivery of Door to Door Organics is here! I am beyond giddy and put away our  new stash of fruits and veggies that arrive. We are having the "bitty box" delivered every other week to hopefully decrease the amount of time we have to go to the grocery store (to every other week). Back to work now!

9:45- Stop for a bit and eat half a grapefruit and toast. Grapefruit is not usually my cup of tea -- so I add some sugar to make it extra delicious. Also pull some black beans out of the freezer to de-frost, planning to make black bean soup tonight for dinner.

10-11:45  Finish up and send off the status report. Spend some time researching Accenture Delivery Partnerships and updating my internal resume with updated skills (both in response to emails reminding me up do such). Also fill out  my client time report.

11:45-12:00 Hungry. Re-heat some of a rice-bake we had for dinner last night. Add some cheese (full disclosure, right?) to make it extra delish. Make a cup of hot chocolate afterwards because I am still kinda cold.

12:00- 2:30 - Put on a fave tv show glee to be in the background as I do a little bit of work. Oh I love working from home, it is a real treat as I rarely do it anymore.Work today is updating some templates and posting them on the web, updating a few write ups I did a while back with feedback I just received, and reviewing some  work/writing feedback on some requirements a team put together.  I stop for 20 min or so somewhere in there to take a shower (because I am cold lol, I took one last night but oh well!)

2:30 -3 . - Call for Work -- I am helping to Plan Accenture's International Women's Day in Detroit. I am the communication's lead, so fortunately the bulk of my work has already been done. This year's theme is "Working at the Speed of Life" and is about how we balance so many things as women and how to keep up with all of the demands thrown at us. I went last year and LOVED the program they did. Again, grateful to work for an awesome company.

3- 4:30 ish - Do more work.. Go through my "open item" list in my email and follow up with some emails, etc. I typically have worked 40-50 hours before Friday hits, so usually Fridays I try to be done at a decent hour.

4:30 - spend 30 min catching up on gmail and reading blogs. Probably some Facebook in there too. Read a cool article on zen habits and post about it here.

5:00- Time to start some dinner. John gets home and brings groceries (so much for not going as often! We were outta milk and tp) I start on the Black Bean Soup and John makes a Yummy Salad tonight. We listen to scriptures while the food is cooking via iPhone. We are in exodus right now and the Israelites just crossed the red sea (and are complaining about not having enough water). I am not a scriptorian by any means, but enjoying learning the scriptures with John.

6:15- soup is finally done. I didn't realize the beans weren't completely cooked when frozen so I had to bring out my trusty pressure cooker to speed things up. Soup was so so, not sure I will use that recipe again.

6:35-830: we rush out the door to head to a local homeless shelter where we are volunteering tonight through our church. Our task is to babysit the kids at the shelter. I make pals with a 4th grade girl, we play with Lincoln logs and then play two games of checkers. Is it bad that I won both? I did give her many opportunities to take my pieces and even pointed them out. But the game has to end eventually. Also, I think this was my first time playing with Lincoln logs. Pretty fun actually.

8:30- 12:25 Our friends who volunteered with us came over for games l. We enjoy some quick mini pizzas and some "low fat" root beer floats. We play a long but fun game, called power grid. It was super close at the end but I end up winning by a few dollars.

12:20 - ? Finish this post. Get ready for bed, and read a little before falling asleep. Weekend is here!

It's not too late [to change habits]

Just read this article from Zen Habits... I found it really awesome. I am trying to change a handful of habits right now, and it is SO challenging. I feel like I should give up daily, because I don't feel like I am successful. I make progress for a few days, maybe a week but then I mess up and feel like it is over. But I am making progress, even if it is just by the decision to keep trying.

Leo Babuata talks about a handful of steps (Know, Consider, Realize, Commit, Find, Notice, Repeat, Practice) that I think may be a good formula to apply to making changes in your life.

Have you ever ditched a bad habit or created a new good habit? What were the things that made you successful?

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

An Important life change

It has been a while since I posted... a little over a month. Do you know why it has been so long?

Because I have been putting off announcing a really important life change. There has only been one thing I have wanted to post about, and I couldn't bring myself to fess up to it until now.

I have officially become a Cat Lady.*

Proof of Cat Lady-ness
Everywhere I go I am covered in cat hair. I have majorly upped my daily consumption of LolCats. I pick up my Myao Ming every day after work, put him over my shoulders and nuzzle this furry creature until I am suffocating myself in cat hair.

Myao Ming is snuggle bug.  He has truly become a part of our daily lives, and is such a joy. He cuddles in our laps and watches movies with us, hangs with John during piano lessons (see photo marquee below), eats his dinner when we eat ours, and even (perhaps somewhat annoyingly to our non-cat loving guests**) is the center of the room when anyone comes over.

The point is, we love our snuggly Myao Myao. He brings us a lot of joy, and makes sad days happier with his adorable cuddly-ness.


Who couldn't adore that face?

*Were you expecting something more life momentous? Babies, Moving, something like that?  Well sorry to disappoint!!! ;)
**Apparently we have alienated some friends by adopting a cat. They have "Cat allergies" or something like that. LOL.
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