Monday, December 26, 2011

Post-Christmas Assesment

Looking over my Christmas goals list, I succeeded in doing 6 out of 10 activities.  I thought "Watch traditional Christmas movies" was an easy one, but there just wasn't enough time.  Kind of a bummer; I feel like I definitely missed out not having watched them.  We usually watch Prancer , Christmas Vacation , and Home Alone in the weeks leading up to Christmas.  Ah well, maybe next year.

Christmas cards were kind of a purposeful write-off.  It's just too much of a hassle.  And we hardly got any anyways, so I don't feel too bad about it.

I am distressed at the lack of holiday bazaars.  I tried, I really did.  I scheduled them into my phone calendar and everything.  But something always came up to prevent me from attending.

I donate my hard earned dollars to suffering animals all the time, so I'm not all that upset about this one either.

All in all, 60% is not too bad, especially given the sadness that overwhelmed me for most of the beginning of December.  I'm just glad it went away in time for me to get things done.  So all's well that ends well I suppose.  I think I use that expression too much.

Sunday, December 25, 2011

Sketch 52

bedraggled flapper
I had originally intended this picture to be a flapper after a rough night, but she ended up looking like she was meant for something a little more epic than that.  I'll probably end up painting her at some point.

Merry Christmas!

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Tuesday Tunes - Special Edition

Today is the ten year anniversary of the day Chris and I first went to the mall together (mentioned here in part one of "Our Story") - an event I have taken to calling our first date since we never really properly dated.  I was going to post some exerpts from my diary at the time, but they were way too embarrising and school-girlish (go figure).  So instead, I drew this picture, which pretty accurately describes the time we had:
I am so lame.
Since it is Tuesday, I figured I would also post a song - the song that will be our wedding song in a few short months.  Enjoy.

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Sketch 50

More Agatha Christie fan art?




















The two on the right are from "Murder In Mesopotamia" by Agatha Christie.  The one on the left?  Not so much.

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Thursday Tunes



Roll Away Your Stone - Mumford & Sons

Darkness is a harsh term don’t you think?
And yet it dominates the things I see
Darkness is a harsh term don’t you think?
And yet it dominates the things I've seen

Stars hide your fires,
These here are my desires
And I won't give them up to you this time around
And so, I’ll be found with my stake stuck in this ground
Marking the territory of this newly impassioned soul

But you, you’ve gone too far this time
You have neither reason nor rhyme
With which to take this soul that is so rightfully mine

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Diets

A while back, I heard about this thing called the Paleo Diet.  I was instantly interested, since I am a huge fan of prehistoric things.  And the premise was pretty interesting - basically, you try to emulate the diet of a caveman.  Lots of meat, vegetables, and nuts.  Seems reasonable.  But there was no way I could switch to this sort of lifestyle when I lived in a house with Chris: the king of cheesy rice.  Rice and cheese are not allowed in the paleo diet.  So I wrote it off as impossible and forgot about it.

A month or so ago, Steve and Meghan decided to start the slow carb diet, which is pretty similar to the paleo diet, except that you eat beans instead of nuts.  And you get a cheat day once a week to sort of reset your metabolism (or something like that; I'm a little blurry on the details).  They were really excited about it and talked about it a lot, which got Chris interested.  So I started looking into the paleo thing again, figuring that if Chris was slow carbing it up, I could do the paleo thing and everything would work out perfectly.  While looking up information about the paleo diet again, I found a somewhat less rigid system called the primal blueprint.  Perfect.

We were going to get started right away, but unfortunately Thanksgiving got in the way, so we decided to reschedule for this week.  I was really excited to start, since I've been fed up with the unhealthy, dine out two or three nights a week lifestyle we've been living.  So I started out strong on Monday, eating eggs for breakfast, some nuts and meat for lunch.  I made dinner (shocking, I know) of seasoned chicken and garlic lemon broccoli.  I had some sunflower seeds for a snack.  Fine, but I was still really hungry.  I wanted to have an apple, but that would have put me over the 50 carbs necessary to stay within ketosis (whatever that is). So instead I went to bed hungry and feeling a little sick.  I started feeling a bit uncomfortable about this diet.

Tuesday, though, I forgot to pack breakfast.  So I ate some dried cranberries I happened to have in my desk at work.  Fine.  Still hungry, still feeling a little sick.  For lunch, I ordered a salad with balsamic vinaigrette.  When it arrived, I was distressed to find croutons in there.  And it came with a pretzel roll - one of my favorite things in the world.  Suddenly it seemed very strange to me that I should have to pick croutons out of my salad and discard one of my favorite snacks in the world because cavemen didn't eat them.

On the way home, I started fantasizing about Reese's peanut butter cup trees.  I imagined pulling into Wawa, buying a tree, and eating it illicitly in the parking lot, destroying the evidence before Chris could fine out that I'd "been bad".  Now I was feeling very uncomfortable about it.  It felt too dangerous to me.  I decided that I was going to quit this diet immediately.  So I went home and ate an english muffin with lemon curds.

Now, I know that some people reading this are going to think that I am suffering from a simple lack of willpower.  You are free to think that, I really don't care.  But let me assure you that you are wrong.  I have plenty of willpower.  If you do not believe me, take a look at this picture.  I was 86 pounds at 5' 6".  This purposeful limitation of food is not, I have decided, something in which I am interested.  When eating a thing starts to feels forbidden, I'm going to have to bow out.  I'm not saying that the paleo, primal, and slow carb diets are bad and dangerous for everyone, I'm just saying that they are not for me.

But this does not mean I am going to pig out on cheese fries and fried chicken for every meal, either.  Chris has decided that he probably wants to stick with the slow carb thing, and that is perfect.  This way, I will still have motivation to eat healthy meals.  Which is really all I wanted out of this diet - to eat more fruits and vegetables.  I can eat more fruits and vegetables while enjoying the occasional peanut butter tree if I want.  I can be more healthy and still sometimes have an english muffin for breakfast.  I can eat a salad without picking out the croutons.

Thursday, December 1, 2011

A Holiday Checklist

Did you know that Christmas is in three weeks?  Yeah, me neither.  I haven't started Christmas shopping.  I haven't even started think about Christmas shopping.  Usually by this time I have at least started my Christmas Budget Spreadsheet, but not this year.  It just doesn't feel very much like the holiday season to me, despite the October snowstorm.  As time goes on, Christmas seems more like a kick in the chest than the happy celebration I remember. I'm not entirely sure what the problem is, but I am setting some goals for the next month that will hopefully help to get me into the Christmas Spirit (whatever that is).

Go shopping on Black Friday - completed!
Get a Christmas tree from a real field - completed!
Send Christmas cards
Decorate the house - completed!
Watch traditional Christmas movies
Make cookies completed!
Donate to something
Acquire an advent calendar - completed!
Attend craft shows/open houses/holiday bazaars
Go for a ride to look at Christmas lights completed!

This doesn't seem like I am overshooting, right?  These all seem like reasonable activities that could be completed before Christmas?  I guess we'll see.