Ambling

People keep asking me “what’s new?” and there really isn’t anything. Lately it’s just been more of the same, more of the same, more of the same.

I am fucking busy. I am fucking wiped.

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Always time for Cat Art, tho. 

My alarm is for 4:30 every morning. Depending on how well I planned my day prior to that moment, that usually affords me hitting snooze about 2-3 times. Then I shower, eat, and dress, and I’m out of the door by 6 AM (preferably) or 6:12 AM (desperately).

I catch either the 6:12 bus (again, preferably) or the 6:26 bus (oh nooo), and on the ride, I try to do my daily reading quota (this week is Modern Romance by Aziz Ansari and I love it so far), and that either takes the whole ride, or I do other things, like plan which errands I need to run, when, which chores to do on which days, etc.

About 6:50-7:05 I get off the bus in Downtown Portland, typically about one block from a Starbucks, and I run in, grab a drip coffee, fix it up with some half & half and hopefully they have the all-natural Whole Earth monkfruit/stevia sweetener I like.

I get on the bus up the hill to my work at about 7:00 – 7:10 AM, which gives me a little time to play Pokemon Go if I can get a seat, or if I can’t, like today, I clutch my coffee, gym bag, work tote bag, and coat it was too warm to wear, and hope I don’t fall and/or spill on anyone.

I’m usually off the bus by 7:20 AM or thereabouts, getting to work on time for my 7:30 start. If I am a little bit late, I fortunately have a very easygoing and understanding boss who knows I have to cross state lines to make it, so sometimes things are beyond my control.

Work is 7:30 AM to 4:00 PM. I usually have some structure to my day, and sometimes that involves getting food during the midmorning hours (like I just did, about 4 hours after a small breakfast of coffee and scrambled eggs), or walking with them to get coffee or lunch. I usually pack my food and do a really good job of remembering it, so I get to be cheap, and since it’s pre-made, I’m very lazy on work days to compensate for how not-lazy I am during the other days when All The Things have to get done.

Three days a week, after work I head to the gym at Portland State University, which is on my way home, and since I went to college there, I have a not-so-cheap alumni membership, but at least I’m going. The other two days a week (Monday and Thursday) are my Get Shit Done After Work Days, which usually means Mondays are housework, and Thursdays are groceries or other errands, and some additional housework. Tues/Weds/Fri, because of the gymming, I get home so late, so my only obligation is to hang out with cats so they don’t miss me too much. Then I am to be in bed by 8 PM, and hopefully asleep by 8:30 PM.

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Yesterday in a nutshell – frittata, apple with PB, coffee with almond milk; getting my favorite podcast’s bumper sticker on my car; finding some spring flowers on my way to my eye doctor appt; coffee with the best Whole Earth!; a view of Portland from the waiting room; roasted veggies and chicken with pickles my coworker didn’t want; my red face after gymming it the hell up for an hour and then shoving a Luna bar in my face. 

What’s been helping me handle my days being so packed is how I have been spending my weekends. Friday night I do laundry and hang it up, then by Sunday morning everything is dry and I can plan outfits for the entire week (gym AND work). I find time in between my Saturday job, going to watch soccer games, and a few times a month, actual social interaction, and then I cook meat and veggies for the week, vacuum what I can, litter boxes (as periodically I do during the week), dishes, countertops, changing sheets, taking out the trash, etc. 90% of those things I can’t really fit in during the week. But that’s alright – since the majority of my cooking happens during that time, I don’t make too much of a mess in the kitchen during the week, and I get by with doing dishes on the nights I’m not gymming to prevent my home becoming a biohazard.

When I have time for it, I work on my garden projects, I just finished shopping for the update I am going to do on my back balcony (and when I get to enjoy it will be anyone’s guess, to be honest), and then I try to catch up on TV. Turns out, TV is one of the most expendable things on the list of things I do to relax. I have read every day so far this year, and I think I’m on my sixteenth book. I also will watch every Timbers and Thorns game I possibly can. TV gets relegated to the spare hour I can sit and eat (I have been eating a lot of meals standing up, my god), or during cardio at the gym. Evenings are for podcasts, because I can DO SO MUCH when listening to them, and I always wind down and fall asleep listening to one with good banter.

 

I think work might be my least strenuous time now. I work, and I work hard, but I also get my social interaction, don’t have a super rigid schedule, can work at my own pace and set my own priorities for the day, and so on. Being on Marquam Hill in Portland is also a really beautiful place to work, and right now all the trees are blooming. When I interviewed here last spring, in May, I just fell in love with how gorgeous it is up here with spring flowers, a gorgeous fountain, some really fantastic older buildings, and spectacular views of the city.  What an amazing place to spend my week! Having surroundings like that, plus going to a gym with views of ALL of Portland surrounding it, really are pretty damn great for the soul.

I’m sometimes spending more money than I should because of convenience, but I’m trying to minimize that. Coffee is an acceptable daily treat for me, but lunch and snacks every day are not.

Food lately goes like this:

5-5:30 AM – Coffee and protein (cooked veg if it’s there). Today’s coffee had unsweetened vanilla almond milk, and my three scrambled eggs were in some whipped butter with some hot sauce on them.

7 AM – Coffee with cream and zero-cal sweetener

Midmorning – usually no later than 11 AM – protein and veg (today was an omelette with some cheese, bacon, tomatoes, and mushrooms, and sriracha to top it off)

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Trying to cut most dairy out = no feta 😦 but I still get SOME joy. 

Early afternoon – no later than 1 PM – another dose of protein and veg (I have a chicken thigh, broccoli, and some whipped butter to zap up)

Later afternoon – 3-3:30 PM – any extra protein I need if I am actively hungry and going to the gym, plus my pre-exercise fuel: Tripe Zero Oikos Yogurt. My brother sold me on the Gospel of Cam Newton.

If I’m not going to the gym, I usually have a few almonds before heading home, or something small enough that I can still eat dinner later, but satisfying so I don’t get hangry on the bus.

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More than, say, Barack Obama may eat in a single serving, but not bad not bad

If I gym, I then have either a Luna bar, Clif bar, or half a of an Odwalla protein smoothie after I finish. That’s usually at about 5-6 PM, and I could probably call that dinner and go to bed, but when I log calories, I’m still short for the day.

When I get home, around 7, I will have some protein and then call it good. Last night I wasn’t very hungry, so I made up some eggs. The other night I had a small pork cutlet and cauliflower rice. During these final few hours, I try to spend as much time as I can with my cats, and make sure to repack my gym bag. It takes about ten minutes since I have clothes set aside to do it, and then I don’t have to panic in the morning. Food is already planned, so I can grab and go.

I am busy. I am tired. I am still lazy. I am still cheap. And I am improving.

 

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