what the days bring, you take it

While I have had a relaxing weekend, the stress of work has already caught up with me. Since yesterday I have been running, running, running again. I can feel all the stress hormones rushing in my veins and my emotions fluctuating. I feel like emotionally unstable, and sometimes, just sometimes, I realize that I must do things differently.

When you work with others and dependent on their commitment, time, and efforts, you know that this kind of work takes more time and there are times that you need to “trust” that the other party will do their absolute best to finish the work with a level of quality required from you. You also know that this is not an optimistic expectation, because in reality a lot of things can go wrong. So, how do we get the best of the other parties? How do we involve them more, and make them do the things on time? Especially if they are your colleagues, or even worse, your superiors? 

I do not have the answer to this. If you have any opinions, please leave me a comment. I will seriously consider it.

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I continue to work mostly at home this week, even though I am back to work (i.e. not vacation time). I do not know whether this is good or bad, but it seems to be working for me. I just wished I could do better. But then, who would not?

One of my colleagues could not believe today that I took vacation time to actually work. Is that so weird? I concur that it is weird, but at least please respect my wishes – I too know to just do things out of work and enjoy my life. But with the work-related congestion I have at my hand, finishing the work is going to give me peace of mind. I am so looking forward to the mornings when I wake up feeling good about life, not stressed by the work I must do. My quality of life is important.

Carbs too.

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Among all of these chaotic circumstances, there has been good things as well. First of, I managed to revive my sourdough from its dried flakes. Objectively though it is questionable that whatever is growing in the starter has come from my original starter (I have been feeding it the last four days); it is quite possible that this is in fact a new culture that I captured from flour, water, or air. It is so hard to know. I want to believe, though it is the original one so that I can brag about my sourdough starter lasting for years and years…What a childish but important wish for me. Unfortunately none of us will know the truth. I wish I could do DNA test or something to figure out :)))

Another good news is that with each wash, my highlights are getting more lighter and I am capable of seeing some light patches in my hair here and there. I am still pissed about the highlights not being strong enough, but considering it has been only 5 days since I have got my hair done, I am hopeful that in two weeks or so, I may get better-looking and stronger highlights. I want to believe…..

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Also, I finally chopped down the little trees shooting out of the trim of my house. Somebody told me that they can grow and start damaging the house/foundation. What!! I do not need that. I feel weird cutting little trees, one because they are little, and second, they are trees. Trees are magical and absolutely wonderful. Why do they show up where they do not belong? I made a mental note to plant one to my yard to ask forgiveness from nature.

Last, since I am not eating well during this stressful time, I seem to be losing weight. I am okay with that as long as I eat at least a vegetable and fruit at least once during the day.  However, it is strange that even planning for one of my weekly pleasures, grocery shopping, is not making me excited.

The situation, my friends, is that dire.

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joy journal – Oct 25, 2016

I have been feeling great lately and that reflects on my joy levels. I know this is life and there are ups and downs, so this up will be likely followed by a down period. Yet, I am determined to enjoy and be grateful for every minute of this period, rather than anticipating a down period following it. Writing solidifies and makes my mind know deep down (and hopefully remember in the future) what a lovely time I have had. So, here I go 🙂

1. I am grateful for the refreshing sleep. I have not dreamed this time, but I woke up feeling good, which is quite rare for me. I often times wake up with thoughts and stress of things to do during the day ahead, but not this time. This time I was just joyful; free and optimistic.

2. I am grateful for the nice Fall weather that makes it enjoyable to walk 🙂 The Fall scenery is so beautiful to look at – I am in love with it this year.

3. I am grateful for the relaxed and happier mood I have after walking. Being in the office, doing work, but not getting stressed or down because of work is a true blessing. Today I worked easy and effective without getting crazy stressed. How about that? I wish my every day was something like this.

4. I am grateful for not leaving my office early and keeping working at the office in the afternoon. It has been sometime I have done that and I must say it is beautiful. I also enjoy working at home, but I think it is time that I spent more time in my office – it is comfy, lovely, and there are nice people around. It also helps me to limit the work I do at home and this way my home once again becomes a place for relaxation.

5. I am grateful for brewing my own coffee at my office and having the means to do so. How lucky I am to be able to do this?

6. I am grateful for walking at the evening and sweating a little bit. It is a little bit windy but still warm for late October. I love the peaceful feeling coming out of walking and sweating.

7. I am grateful for doing my lower-back stretches and also adding some push ups, tricep and bicep exercises (with dumbbells) as well as forward lunges. It has been some time that I tried push ups and I was happy to see that it did not kill me right away 🙂 I hope to continue to do these light exercises almost everyday.

8. I am grateful for drinking milk and getting my calcium and vit D supplements. My blood tests show that they are helping me increase the calcium and Vit D levels in my system, which is awesome 🙂

9. I am grateful for the raw veggies, beans, and eggs I have consumed today; they are healthy, simple, and lovely food; I am blessed with having them at my home. oh, and it is the first carb-less day in a while 🙂

10. I am grateful for yet another no-spending day 🙂 is that not awesome? 🙂 It is awesome! I feel lucky and very abundant. A miraculous feeling indeed 🙂

11. I am grateful for good memories and laughs that put a smile on my face whenever I remember them. There are so many good people I should thank for these – may they always find life easy and lovely.

12. I am grateful for relaxing the entire evening at home – I am free of stress, concerns, or negative feelings.

13. I am grateful for the song I have been listening in the last few weeks. I have an habit of focusing on one lovely item and listen/watch it over and over until its effect on me disappears, which leads me to find something new. I am still hooked with this song and am enjoying the feelings its music creates in me. The lyrics is depressing, but there is something captivating about the tune and the voice of the singer.

14. I am grateful for all the food, furniture, clothes, shoes/boots, accessories, appliances and anything else at my possession in my home; they make my life easy, complete, and enjoyable. I am so lucky to have found and purchased them.

15. I am grateful for my blog that allows me to express my joy as well as sorrow. Life, as it is. Life, as I experience it. Life, as I interpret it….

16. I am grateful for being grateful 🙂

random thoughts

I am writing just because and I have no idea how this post will develop. We shall see.

It has been a miserable day today, with light rain and gray sky. Do you not love it? 🙂 🙂

The only positive coming out of this colorless day is to be able to notice the trees changing colours; all the red, brown, and yellow leaves… Either on the trees or on the ground. I walked by a house with a yard full of fallen leaves. It was so beautiful… What a contrast these colours make with the sky around us and what a blessing to notice them.

Despite the depressing weather, I walked both in the morning and the afternoon. I even saw a colleague of mine biking. How great is that we are making an effort to keep healthy (and frugal)?

My aim of 2 carb-less days per week did not solidify yet. Yesterday I had a bagel in the morning and today I had half a slice of bread with dinner. Both felt very good  and tasty 🙂 Yet, I will continue to make an effort to curb the refined carbs. I am doing good otherwise, eating raw veggies and protein. I hope to continue like this as there is a noticeable difference.

While it is a busy time of the year, yesterday I thought about the holiday time-off. We have two more months to go but still thinking about it makes me excited. We have something like 2 weeks off that I really love. My plans are the usual: taking a rest, minimal work, deep cleaning, airing, and decluttering the house, and shopping. I would love to take advantage of the sales.

I also would like to read books this time. Last year I had bought the “A Game of Thrones” series and was very excited about reading the books until I got stuck at the 2nd book. That one is so boring, my goodness, I need extra motivation to go thru it. I was told that many readers feel the same way about this book, yet once it is done, the rest was as captivating as the 1st book. I believe in this… I will read these books 🙂

As usual, I will also socialize during the holidays and will find time to spend time with my friends. Not sure whether I would host at my home, but I sure will be attending others’ functions.

Holiday season also means the season of gift. I am lucky that gifting for me is not extensive, but I buy gifts for two friends and my good neighbours. The entire year (I cannot believe that time passes this quickly) I was looking for nice gifts, yet I was not successful in getting any yet. I have a couple of ideas and I hope the month of November will give me a lot of options to choose from.

On a separate note, I seem to have got cold. It is Murphy’s Law again; I have a talk tomorrow. I hope to feel better till then 🙂

Until next time, stay safe and positive 🙂

 

Aims and plans: 3) eating healthier and losing weight

I continue to tackle my recent aims and plans to make my life better, as I wish it.

The third item on the list was: 

3. eating healthier and losing 25 pounds and keeping it off

I have always been a chubby girl, but not overly over-weight until something like 8 years ago when I moved to my current city and I gained weight – around 30 pounds to be exact. I am not sure what exactly caused this; I am thinking possibly the increased stress levels as well as the reduced physical activity levels. In anyways, two years ago my doctor informed me that my blood sugar levels were borderline and even 5% fat loss would make a positive difference in my sugar levels. I took this to my heart but I could not really implement any weight loss/better diet strategies for a long time. Luckily last time we checked it had improved but I was advised to lose weight if I can and increase my exercise levels.

I have made several attempts in eating better and exercising more over my life. Long story short; I know: a) exercising does not make me lose weight, b) if I can limit my night-eats and if I limit carbs, like bread, rice, or even sweets, I feel lighter, c) there is something about chewy raw veggies that helps with water retention or fat dissolution (not sure which one), d) I keep consume the same types of food, which needs to change.

Knowing these I now am ready to remind myself that I can do better and in fact lose the dreaded extra weight. I just need to get more conscious about these, that is all. And this post will just function to do so.

Plan: 1) Shop for 6 different veggies/fruits that I have not consumed in the last 1 week. I did that in the past with success; it aims to facilitate me consume a variety of food

2) drink not one but two glasses of milk every day – I read somewhere that calcium helps keeping the bone health as well as managing weight. I want to see how that goes

3) keep walking in the afternoons and if I can, in the mornings to the office. Make an attempt to walk at the weekends too, even for 10 min.

4) everyday eat at least two raw veggie in the form of salad or snack: lettuce, onion, herbs, spinach, carrots, tomato, and others. There are many options to choose from.

5) For mid-night snack, continue to choose yogurt, milk, and fruits.

6) Continue with the reduced intake of bread (now that I bake my own bread, interestingly I consume less of it..)

7) Have 2 refined carb-less (bread, rice, pasta, etc.) days per week: I just came up with this idea right now and I wonder how that would work….. Since my weekends are usually pleasure-oriented, I guess what I need is to focus on the beginning of the week. Maybe Mondays and Thursdays – how about that? Exciting 🙂

I am currently 200 pounds (ooops 🙂 ) Let’s see where I am gonna go from here.

healthy life – style journal, Nov 8, 2015

there has been changes in my body, which incidentally overlapped with the time I started to eat less carbs and more protein.

As a person good with observations and patterns, I could not help but think whether the carbs were not so bad after all; perhaps they help and are required for certain body functions?

Perhaps I have not done well by limiting carbs that much; but I can tell you this; the amount of carbs I was eating was above normal limits too.

So even though I have had this conflict in my mind, I will keep limiting the carbs and continue to eat better. I just will not get crazy about occasionally eating carbs.

Today’s diet reflected this.

late breakfast: 2 bagels with butter, coffee with cream and brown sugar. I ordered two bagels to test myself; nope, they are not as tasty as before so I am glad I have done that. the way they are toasted has not been great lately and that strengthens my choice of not eating bagels anymore. The coffee is not tasty either; I never liked this cafe’s coffee – so why do I keep drinking it? the answer is that it is in my favorite cafe. The cafe is my favorite because of its bagels and its staff, not the coffee. I decided to change the cafe from now on; it will also help me with seeing different places and having different experiences. A great step towards breaking a habit and the routine in my life. Exciting! 🙂

late lunch: 2 bowls of vegetable chicken soup

dinner: 2 hard boiled eggs, 1 tomato, and half a large cucumber with 2 slices of bread. I was too lazy to cook and I wanted to eat raw veggies. I am glad I ate the tomato even though it is not one of my favorite veggies. It was from the last week and I am glad I have eaten it before it started to go bad. Cucumber, as always, was a delight to eat.

late-night snack (added later):  1.5 glass of milk; 10 rice  cakes with caramel. Totally too much. Yet felt good. Like when you are at school and they tell you not to eat during the class. Or laugh. Or talk to our peers. And something prompts you to do it anyhow and miraculously you do not get caught. I am not sure whey I am rebelling against healthy eating (am I bored?), but mentally I am feeling good.

exercise: 10 min in the morning

supplements: iron (prescribed) at noon; vit D and calcium (recommended by my doctor) after dinner

stretching: none yet

random thoughts

Life is good.

I am working slowly but steadily. My mind is working and thus is happy.

It was a warm day; the evening is young and I have many interesting books and blogs to read; I am happy, peaceful, and slightly excited; just the way I would like to feel.

The effect is mostly coming from the carbs I have eaten for the dinner – I know this feeling so well. I am trying to limit the carbs but their positive effects on my mood is amazing.

Moderation… Moderation.

I have made purchases today, which kind of threw my weekly budget up to the maximum level. I am feeling a little bit nauseated with that, but I know tomorrow is another day, next week I can make it better, and under all conditions, I am constantly striving to do my best 🙂

Sometimes I feel like the effort and having an aim to accomplish is more exciting than reaching the aim itself. I need years to turn things around with conscious spending. Instead of waiting so long, why not to enjoy today and reflect on my experiences?

Yes, Mam 🙂

challenges – daily progress

I am speaking too much today 🙂 this is my third post. But I gotta write this one, as it keeps me motivated and helps me make these changes in my life.

So here is the list of things I have done today to improve my life: I took the bus in the morning and surprisingly did not mind waiting 10 minutes for it; drank a cup of chamomile tea, which I usually do not like but was fine this time; looked out of the window to enjoy the nature and the surroundings at the office; walked back to home and then to the post-office at a fast pace (yay!); am motivated to walk more in the evenings and weekends; ate healthy meals and limited carbs; listened to the music at the office while working; and did not make any purchases.

I have done well today; maybe I should increase/change the challenges as time goes on. New challenges, new excitements, and new reasons to feel good 🙂

cheers everyone

joy journal – May 13, 2015

1. I had difficulty sleeping yesterday night, but I am grateful I got up only 30 min late. That meant me not being able to wait for the bus (argh!) and taking the cab again. I am not going to beat myself up for that, but I am extra grateful that I am feeling not good about this. I am hopeful about tomorrow.

2. I am grateful for taking care of a number of small stuff at work today. I feel the need to work on the major tasks, but when my daily schedule is fragmented between meetings, phone calls, urgent matters to take care of, and my team member’s needs, it is somehow difficult. I am planning to preserve the morning hours for me only. I think that is a great idea and I hope to implement it, starting tomorrow.

3. I am grateful for having a relaxing night at home. I have this new interest of “conscious spending”, which prompted me to look for and follow a number of blogs nowadays. I should say I am really inspired! I know I will not do the majority of the things suggested, but nevertheless they keep me focused on the conscious spending idea and help me to make small changes everyday.

4. I am grateful for having a really healthy dinner this evening. I did not buy bread today, so I am lacking the carbs to make me sleepy, but eating fruit a few minutes ago almost filled me and I hope this feeling will help me to fall asleep tonite. If I can make it, then it will make me believe that I will be able to live without being dependent on bread to make me feel good or sleepy. Confidence is a great feeling for implementing changes.

5. I am extra grateful that while I was getting ready to make pasta for tonite’s dinner, I changed my mind and rather prepared a vegetable dish. How could I do that? I am proud of myself 🙂

6. I am grateful that I worked with a junior team member of mine today on a project. I did not have clear answers but at least we tried to clarify things and I am hoping that was a good learning opportunity for her. She thanked me at the end, saying that now she has a better idea of how things should be. Is that not awesome? It is awesome! Do you know why? Because my other team members always expected me to have answers right away and fix things, which does not happen all the time. Great to have someone new with a different attitude around.

7. I am grateful for working till 6 pm at the office. Since days are longer now, it just feels okay to spend longer time at the office.

8. I am grateful for flossing almost consistently in the last month or so. Now, you may say, dear reader, that this is gross. I totally agree with you! It is gross. but then it is also healthy and I am kind of excited to be persistent about it. The trick that worked for me was to use the “flossers” rather than the floss (i.e. string) itself. this experience reminds me that sometime there are multiple ways to do things and if one way does not work, keep looking for alternatives. And who knows? Maybe we will come across one that works for us. Keep hope.

9. I am grateful for eating an apple today. Why? because of its health benefits 🙂

10. I am grateful for my computer that is still working. It has been slowed down in the last one year and frequently shuts down. When it shuts down, it does not start easily afterwards. Poor thing. It is time to get a new one and I ordered for one. Until the new one comes, I will be thankful each day I am capable of using it and connecting to internet.

11. I am grateful that I remembered to put the garbage out this morning; it is garbage collection day. So far I have not missed it not even once. I congratulate myself.

12. I am grateful for keeping up with some of my challenges today. In short, I ate healthy, limited the carbs considerably, drank two cups of tea, smiled once or so even when there was no one around, looked out of the window to enjoy the view, and did not have extra expense (other than the cab fare) that would threw away my “conscious spending” plan. well done!

13. I am grateful for not being lazy and writing this post tonite.

cheers everyone

nights, sleep, and carbs

I could not sleep. This is one the rare nights that I had to come back to my living room. TV is on and I am posting a blog.

It is raining outside – it started in the late evening. I wonder whether it will rain tomorrow, too.

Carbs are great in the sense that they help me sleep. I will have some bread in a minute or so. I am sure it will help me to get sleepy. Another thing that prevents me from sleeping is an active and excited mind. Thoughts. Well, it happens to anyone, anytime I guess.

Nights were always my favourite – quiet, peaceful, and lacking distraction. Great time for reflection, connecting to self, and relaxation. But, I had sleeping problem maybe a decade ago. I was not able to sleep till 4-5 am in the morning. i am not saying it has been healthy and did not affect my life negatively – it did eventually. I found exercise and eating carbs were the best way to help me sleep at a normal time.

So I can have carbs and let my body complain about it, or, I do not eat carbs and have difficulty falling asleep. Dilemma. Eventually, I hope my body will be okay with eating some carbs right before going to bed: sleep is essential too 🙂

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