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The Shogun

The Black Ribbon Thread (The Sleeping Quarters)

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Vhat is happening vith my vinning streak of black ribboning?  Not vun drop means not vun drop!  It does not mean thirty drops vhen I vant to keep getting vun more task done, and then read for fun because my evening has been compressed into a few minutes before bedtime.  It is not even good, I do not enjoy it.  Vhich is just as the League of Temperance teaches us.

 

I must take it vun night at a time.  I must remember all control starts vith the self.  I must remember, little steps.  I think also I must vork on the next steps of the plan:

  • Move my vorkout back to start at 11pm, and then 10:30pm, so I can spend more time reading in bed.
  • Schedule fun things like reading und vatching documentaries for an hour in bed.
  • Measure "enough vork" as accomplishing at least the three most important tasks on ze list.

I have been vorking on the last vun this veek, but I think the first if the vun that vould turn around many of my problems vith... vith the v-vord.  The end of the day is vhere all my scheduling problems slide to, und combined vith no good schedule for the things that need to get done, it is a mess.  So 11pm is vorkout time, and then tonight I shall read Mort.

 

The thing vhat has thrown my routine out this veek vas an important schedule-breaking thing on day 2, vhich siphoned off my time on day vun, und vhich caused me to spend day 3 unproductive from general relief of extra demands.  So I vas left vith long lists of things to do at the end of the day, und some mental fatigue from being in vork mode for the whole day and night.  I do not svitch modes that vell.  Und I must remember vhat it says in Deep Vork, vhich is essentially that if you vant to vork in as focused and creative a vay as Leonard of Quirm, you must limit vorking time and schedule enough mental rest.

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1 hour ago, sarakingdom said:

Vhat is happening vith my vinning streak of black ribboning?  Not vun drop means not vun drop!  It does not mean thirty drops vhen I vant to keep getting vun more task done, and then read for fun because my evening has been compressed into a few minutes before bedtime.  It is not even good, I do not enjoy it.  Vhich is just as the League of Temperance teaches us.

I'm telling you, the turtle is in retrograde.  That, or @Draegon (Liam P Boyle)is getting more than 4 hours of sleep a night now, so the universe is finding balance :) (kudos Liam!)

 

2 hours ago, sarakingdom said:

I must take it vun night at a time.  I must remember all control starts vith the self.  I must remember, little steps.  I think also I must vork on the next steps of the plan:

All kidding aside, this looks good. I have failed to stick to my sleeping plan this week, too, so it looks like we both have habit patterns to push against.  For me, I really need to work on a substitute for screen time when I get bored and/or stressed.  I wonder if it'd be wronk to set up a spear target in the house.  5 minutes of spear work and I'd no longer be bored...but plenty tired...(I feel like I'm a slightly modern Igor - my accent comes and goes).

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On 9/27/2016 at 8:09 AM, Draegon (Liam P Boyle) said:

7 hours 12 minutes.  Overslept until 6:00 and missed the workout window.  I'll do extra office yoga.

 

That is getting to be like real sleep.  IMO, it is vorth skipping the vorkout vindow for a few veeks to make seven hours your norm.  You haff been very sleep-deprived.  Vunce your sleeping habits are more solid, then reintroduce fifteen minutes of morning vorkout.  You can stretch or do strength exercises in front of the TV to make up for it, if you have to.  Two minutes here und there, okay, not qvite as focused as vun full vorkout, but it adds up.

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That is getting to be like real sleep.  IMO, it is vorth skipping the vorkout vindow for a few veeks to make seven hours your norm.  You haff been very sleep-deprived.  Vunce your sleeping habits are more solid, then reintroduce fifteen minutes of morning vorkout.  You can stretch or do strength exercises in front of the TV to make up for it, if you have to.  Two minutes here und there, okay, not qvite as focused as vun full vorkout, but it adds up.

Last night vas only 4 hours and 37 minutes. That's vhat I get for trading the cocoa for dark rum collinses.

Sent from the dragon's lair

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I got a full 8 hours of sleep last night. Ve vill not talk about the previous night. I did 15 minutes of meditation in the evening. Then I made ze good decision to spin instead of trying to fit something useful into the half hour before bed. Spinning counts as moving ze knees. Plus, watching the fiber turn into yarn iz very restful. I vas able to fall asleep quickly and did not vake up until 5 minutes before my alarm went off.

 

I must repeat dis experiment again.

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9 hours ago, Draegon (Liam P Boyle) said:

Last night vas only 4 hours and 37 minutes. That's vhat I get for trading the cocoa for dark rum collinses.

Sent from the dragon's lair

See?  See?  And @sarakingdomgot to bed early!  I'm telling you, it's like the force.  There must be a balance.

 

:)

 

I digress.  I actually got into bed on time.  The computer was on a little later than planned, but not by much. 

 

9 hours ago, Mistr said:

I got a full 8 hours of sleep last night. Ve vill not talk about the previous night. I did 15 minutes of meditation in the evening. Then I made ze good decision to spin instead of trying to fit something useful into the half hour before bed. Spinning counts as moving ze knees. Plus, watching the fiber turn into yarn iz very restful. I vas able to fall asleep quickly and did not vake up until 5 minutes before my alarm went off.

 

I must repeat dis experiment again.

I briefly thought you meant an exercise bike.  However, I can see that doing something like spinning yarn or another task that is relaxing, and I'm assuming might absorb the mind a little to help it reduce the mental chatter would be very useful.

 

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Oy, last night vas hard. I vas very tired after an evening of rearranging the garage with Dumbledore and Hermes. I don't think I did anything with poor form, but my knees had it in for me when ve vere done. Ibuprofen and stretching barely took the edge off the pain. I got up about 11 to lie on the couch vit my feet up in hopes that vould help. I massaged my knees and the muscles around them. No actual sore spots. Lots of tight muscles. Again.

 

Grrrrrrr. I am already doing all ze good things. My brain vanted to sleep. I vill claim partial credit for fighting the v-word.

 

Note: I put the Badger sore muscle rub on my shoulder and neck. It seemed to help.

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11 hours ago, Mistr said:

Oy, last night vas hard. I vas very tired after an evening of rearranging the garage with Dumbledore and Hermes. I don't think I did anything with poor form, but my knees had it in for me when ve vere done. Ibuprofen and stretching barely took the edge off the pain. I got up about 11 to lie on the couch vit my feet up in hopes that vould help. I massaged my knees and the muscles around them. No actual sore spots. Lots of tight muscles. Again.

 

Grrrrrrr. I am already doing all ze good things. My brain vanted to sleep. I vill claim partial credit for fighting the v-word.

 

Note: I put the Badger sore muscle rub on my shoulder and neck. It seemed to help.

Badger muscle rub?  Is this something like tiger balm?

 

I'd give partial credit.  The habits were all in place, but the body was in disagreement. 

 

My weekend went fair.  Friday night was late as predicted.  Saturday was midnight, and last night was 11.  I need to keep an eye on the book reading, and limit evenings to sword texts - I'm much more likely to put something down if there's a lot to digest in it, not to mention semi-archaic/semi-code writing.  The books in question are a biography of Musashi along with an up to date translation of his writings, and a copy of Yagyu Munenori's "the Life Giving Sword", and also Karl Friday's "Legacies of the Sword" which covers both Japanese feudal culture and development, and also an overview of Kashima Shinryu.  They are all good books, but heavy, so again, easier to put down after a couple of chapters. 

 

Otherwise, the main thing will be enforcing screen time, and hoping the kitty sleeps better (he's being nice, but a little restless). 

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Sun-Mon: 5 hr 3min @ 96% efficiency - 4 hr 51 min actual sleep

Mon-Tue: 5 hr 59 min @ 91% efficiency - 5 hr 27 min actual sleep time.

So this veek I'm trying meditation before bed. Sun night I did 15 minutes of zazen breathing meditation. I vas vired after this. Bouncing off the valls like a toddler on energy drinks. This style of meditation increases the vakefullness.

Last night I laid in shavasana and used a guided meditation that vas 30 minutes of the Jedi code: "There is no emotion, there is only peace / There is no ignorance, there is only knowledge / There is no passion, there is only serenity / There is no chaos, there is only harmony / There is no death, there is the Force." Very calming, no?

I had also taken 10mg of Melatonin and two benadryl. I still had a restless night and got barely enough sleep.

Sent from the dragon's lair

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Success! I got a good 8+ hours of sleep last night!

 

No magic formula involved. Being exhausted from two days of poor sleep may have helped.

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Veek Two Meeting of the Ankh-Monkpork League of Temperance

 

I haff not been on the vagon.  I am veak in the face of v-v-vay... the v-vord.  It has been very hard.  But last night I beat it.

 

Because I haff been struggling vith the v-vord, ve need cocoa.

 

Zer Cocoa Recipe

Vun tablespoon unsveetened cocoa powder (9g)

Vun tablespoon sugar (12g)

Vun tiny pinch of salt

Vun cup of milk (227g)

 

Heat on stove und stir vith a spoon.

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10 hours ago, sarakingdom said:

Veek Two Meeting of the Ankh-Monkpork League of Temperance

 

I haff not been on the vagon.  I am veak in the face of v-v-vay... the v-vord.  It has been very hard.  But last night I beat it.

 

Because I haff been struggling vith the v-vord, ve need cocoa.

 

My recipe honestly might not help with the V-word...depends on how you react to chocolate ;)  It's good cocoa for chatting while relaxing, game night, or curling up on the sofa in front of the fire when it's cold and dreary outside.

 

Chris's rambling method of hot chocolate:

I usually make cocoa for two, but the process would be similar for one:

Use whatever mugs we'll be drinking out of to measure the milk (leave room at the top). 

Set out one bar of dark chocolate (good quality, high percentage).  Using a sharp knife, chop up about a half of said bar into small pieces (maybe 2/3rds, depending on the size of the bar or size of the mugs). 

Gently heat milk on medium, stirring occasionally.  When warm, dump in chocolate, and stir with a whisk.

Have a bite of chocolate while you wait and stir.

Add a little more chocolate to the milk. Taste.  Add a rounded teaspoon or so of cocoa powder (it rounds out the taste with more of the base notes)

Taste.  Sweeten if you like. 

Add a little more chocolate for funsies, but remember, we're not making ganache here (unless you like to eat your hot cocoa with a spoon, and I won't judge you for that)

Pour into the mugs. 

 

I've not tried the pinch of salt before, but that's a really good idea!  A dash of cinnamon can also be good. 

 

The lady friend likes the caramel notes of some brands of milk chocolate, so I sometimes use a mix of bars.  Possible additions include a touch of Irish Cream or whiskey/bourbon etc., amaretto, another nut flavor liquor, or creme de menthe.  Actually, some raspberry liquor would be a very classic flavor pairing. 

 

I have been running slightly behind the vagon.  It's hard.  On the upside, fuzzball is going back to being 5 am fuzzball (we have starlings and other birds migrating through, so they are up early and he wants to go and briefly say 'hi'). So, I'm tired enough that early bed times are more tempting. I also have picked up an herbal blend with passion flower, skullcap and hops to try out.  It's from a brand that makes a sinus/allergy blend that works fairly well for me, so we'll see. 

 

Screen time has been running a little past 9, but I'm able to shut it off by 9:30 or so, and since that's actually tracking somewhat consistently, that's a big improvement from before.  There is obviously some more room to push.

Edited by ChrisWithaStick
I can almost spell
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6 minutes ago, ChrisWithaStick said:

Add a little more chocolate to the milk. Taste.  Add a rounded teaspoon or so of cocoa powder (it rounds out the taste with more of the base notes)

Taste.  Sweeten if you like. 

Add a little more chocolate for funsies, but remember, we're not making ganache here (unless you like to eat your hot cocoa with a spoon, and I won't judge you for that)

 

*salivates excessively, which is maybe a little threatening with fangs*

 

6 minutes ago, ChrisWithaStick said:

A dash of cinnamon can also be good. 

 

That's the top pick, but I much prefer mint.

 

8 minutes ago, ChrisWithaStick said:

On the upside, fuzzball is going back to being 5 am fuzzball (we have starlings and other birds migrating through, so they are up early and he wants to go and briefly say 'hi').

 

I think I love your fuzzball.

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44 minutes ago, sarakingdom said:

That's the top pick, but I much prefer mint.

Mint?  That's easy peasy, but adds another step. Get a pack of fresh mint (or pick it if you or a neighbor has some- it probably needs picking).  Clean and rough chop half a handful of leaves, bring the milk to a simmer, turn off the heat and steep the leaves for 10 minutes or to taste.  Strain, squeeze the leaves to get more liquid out, then proceed as above.  It's one of the tastier ways to add mint to something.  It will have some strong herbal tones, of course, but I prefer it to mint oil/extract.  This is how we flavor ganache- you may need less mint for cocoa since there's not as much chocolate to balance. 

 

You can do this with a lot of teas and tisanes that might pair well with chocolate.  You just make a strong brew with the milk.

 

44 minutes ago, sarakingdom said:

I think I love your fuzzball.

He's pretty cool.  And good at kitty ukemi, if not the timing/placement of it (he does some good side falls and rolls).

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Got in a slightly broken 6 hours 36 minutes last night. This guy:

e261b423c0318f708bee0c21941a6e6b.jpg

Needed to burn off some adrenaline last night from an unwelcome encounter vith a little purse/rat dog that invaded his home yesterday. That friend had been varned repeatedly not to bring her yip poochie over. However, she did and Samhain did indeed try to kill it. So kitty was pretty wired all night and playing pretty roughly to burn off all that extra energy. It voke me tvice.

Trading out the seated meditation for meditative Yin Yoga seemed to help very much vith the restlessness.

Sent from the dragon's lair

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17 hours ago, ChrisWithaStick said:

Mint?  That's easy peasy, but adds another step. Get a pack of fresh mint (or pick it if you or a neighbor has some- it probably needs picking).  Clean and rough chop half a handful of leaves, bring the milk to a simmer, turn off the heat and steep the leaves for 10 minutes or to taste.  Strain, squeeze the leaves to get more liquid out, then proceed as above.  It's one of the tastier ways to add mint to something.  It will have some strong herbal tones, of course, but I prefer it to mint oil/extract.  This is how we flavor ganache- you may need less mint for cocoa since there's not as much chocolate to balance. 

 

I'm all in favor of the fresh mint.  And steeping mint is what a French press is for (when it's not making coffee).

 

17 hours ago, ChrisWithaStick said:

He's pretty cool.  And good at kitty ukemi, if not the timing/placement of it (he does some good side falls and rolls).

 

Cats do great ukemi.  And pretty darned good parkour.

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On 10/3/2016 at 10:18 PM, ChrisWithaStick said:

Badger muscle rub?  Is this something like tiger balm?

 

Badger's an organic one I picked up on impulse at the food co-op way back in the day after a particularly rough aikido class, and it turned out to work way better than I expected it to.  It's cayenne-and-ginger based.  You don't really feel it when you rub it on, but I've never had it fail to kick in within a couple of hours, whether it's muscle or joint pain.  (The studies on cayenne are pretty good, I suspect that's the really active ingredient.)  It also smells amazing.

 

On 10/3/2016 at 10:50 AM, Mistr said:

Grrrrrrr. I am already doing all ze good things. My brain vanted to sleep. I vill claim partial credit for fighting the v-word.

 

On 10/3/2016 at 10:18 PM, ChrisWithaStick said:

I'd give partial credit.  The habits were all in place, but the body was in disagreement. 

 

This challenge, I'm counting the habit being in place, regardless of vhat the body does.  It's the habit I vant to train, so it's the habit I'm revarding.  (As the League of Temperance handbook says, ve are made of our habits, und vith our habits, ve vill conquer our urges.)

 

On 10/4/2016 at 9:27 AM, Draegon (Liam P Boyle) said:

used a guided meditation that vas 30 minutes of the Jedi code

 

Vhere are you getting guided Jedi meditations?

 

(I suddenly vondered about guided Discvorld meditations.  Zer History monks?  Zer Vay of Mrs. Cosmopolite?  Zer Yen Buddhists?  I... I vant those.  I vant those very much.)

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