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17 hours ago, Mistr said:

Fascinating. I've been finding your videos inspiring. Also educational, especially for OHP. I haven't figured out a video set-up yet, but I hope my form looks like yours.

 

The jackass comments are why I do not have a public Insta.

 

Thanks. I find if I let other people have a vote in what I do, I will do nothing. However, some things may/may not be worth the potential for heartburn.

 

17 hours ago, Mistr said:

Yeah, we get that too. I make a point of teaching pins in my class because Sensei often skips them and the newer people screw them up on tests. I get that, I don't like doing them anymore because my left knee has serious objections to good pinning form. On the other hand, pins are great for stretching out your shoulders.

 

Ha, my shoulders got some kind of attention and it's telling me all about it now. We had to work around some definite Issues last night, but we got it done. T-1 one week.

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December 2019: Week 2

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No, I'm Not Nervous. Who's Nervous?

 

Tasks

Clean kitchen counters

Clean kitchen table

Change bed sheets

Christmas decorating?

 

Practice

Iaido - 0/2

Jo + Bokken - 2/2

Technique review - 6/6

 

Flashback - 4/14

26.1

26.2

 

Nutrition

No New Natural Flavors

Swap chocolate bars for chocolate chips

Test blackberries

 

Monday

Well, here we are again. Glorious. T-2 weeks before PTO. Test is in two days. I'm just treading water 'til then. So is my bench press. This is going to be another week where lifting gets the short end of the stick, but it can't be helped. Koshinage and lower body work don't mix, it's been proven, and Saturday is black belt test for Sempai, so.....not sure how/if that will work out. Not worried about it until after the last second of jiu waza. 

 

Tuesday

The Fs I give are very disproportionately assigned this week. Yes, all the panic was had. We did separate dinners and I avoided him handling anything food-related without making him feel like a plague rat (hopefully). There was no big discussion about it and we both slept most of the time we were indoors, because it was stupid damp-cold and we were both tired, but there was handling of doorknobs with paper towels and silent prayers.

 

Wednesday 

Well, I didn't get sick, so whatever I did worked. Husband went back to work, so evidently it was very transient. I skipped the gym in deference to testing, hauled my keister out the door, forgetting my rings in the process, and proceeded to be late in spite of leaving early because Winter Weather Traffic. Sigh. Add driving stress and naked-fingers stress to testing stress, and you have got yourself some Stress. What a world. Um. Well, I think in spite of all that I had less anxiety than testing for purple? Maybe? It's hard to say. I will say it is soooooo much less stressful pair testing than testing alone. I had a good uke who didn't really know the techniques themselves well, but has a long background in martial arts (good form in general, excellent ukemi) and is also a purple belt. I had asked him to uke for this last month and he was a real sport for stepping up and doing his best. Which was really well given how crazy the requirements are. So I was super grateful. We only ended up having to repeat a handful (no more than 5) of permutations of a technique between us, so gonna say we probably passed. We'll know for sure on Monday. Black belt testing for a friend of ours is going down this Saturday. My first view of that experience. We're going to hopefully get our nails did after that (no prizes for guessing the color.....). After this, I went home and ate a whole bunch of things then cooked out. 

 

Thursday

Work from home and take cat to vet day. Whee. Nothing seems to be obviously wrong with her, so blood panel and $200, AWAY. Nothing to complain about today, got a good bit of work done, all the cat litter was delivered. A win-win. 

 

Friday

WOW was Friday fired so hard. 3 major things all wanting to be top priority at the same time with different claims to supremacy. One of them involved trading hardware back and forth with the dev, one was a massive prod break, one was a minor prod break. Fixed two of them, the one with the hardware peripherals was so very broken that it forced the dev back to the drawing board while I juggled the other two chainsaws. This went on until T-1 hour to leave, so it wasn't a high stress day or anything.

 

Saturday

Black belt test viewing, that was certainly a thing that happened. A 3 karateka to 1 aikidoka funfest. The karateka were insane. That is all.

A rare instance of me in a nail salon with my soon-to-be-former-purple-belt partner, we did mani-pedi things. We talked about our odds of successfully obtaining brown and our strategy for preparing for qualifiers waaaaaay ahead of time, a bit at a time, so we don't have to climb that mountain all at once. I may have shiny brown nails now. Equally rare, the nail polish survived the night without getting pillow imprints. Amazing. The downside of all this activity is no gym and my routine was generally blown right to Hell, but every blue moon that's okay. Ate my last decent chocolate bar.

 

Cat's blood work came back as possible kidney issues, early stages. She'll need a urinalysis to confirm, which will happen on Tuesday. We are choosing--or at least I am--to look at this as Old Cat Disease and we're managing that one day at a time the best we can and not worrying about the rest. I can't make a kidney work better.

 

Sunday

Shockingly normal. Made major progress on a page in my outline. Decorated the tree. Made fussy ham and bean soup. Dumped out all the sub-par chocolate bars I was keeping out of delusion that they were worth eating.

 

 

I feel pretty good about life. Shocking. Or just the glow of imminent promotion. Whatever.

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18 hours ago, Kishi said:

 

Can't trust that day

 

Can we talk about how it f---s you up and makes you want to crawl under a rock and just reside there from now on? That isn't the test talking, it's pure industry-grade "Why am I here, again?" I had such a headache until my siesta yesterday, it was unreal. Also, it was overcast 68 degrees then and overcast + rain + cold today.

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3 hours ago, Urgan said:

Can we talk about how it f---s you up and makes you want to crawl under a rock and just reside there from now on? That isn't the test talking, it's pure industry-grade "Why am I here, again?" I had such a headache until my siesta yesterday, it was unreal. Also, it was overcast 68 degrees then and overcast + rain + cold today.

 

Yeah, the weather doesn't help. Cold + rain = urrrgh

 

We had that yesterday. Today and tomorrow we get bright, sunny and +17º F. :cold:

 

I hope your test goes well!

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1 minute ago, Mistr said:

Yeah, the weather doesn't help. Cold + rain = urrrgh

 

We had that yesterday. Today and tomorrow we get bright, sunny and +17º F. :cold:

 

I hope your test goes well!

 

And on both of those notes....did I mention I got a text from my husband saying he's coming down with some kind of sickness? Yaaaaaaay.

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59 minutes ago, Urgan said:

 

And on both of those notes....did I mention I got a text from my husband saying he's coming down with some kind of sickness? Yaaaaaaay.

 

It's going around. One of my coworkers brought something back as a souvenir from her vacation and now me and my cubicle neighbor are showing signs/symptoms.

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1 hour ago, Kishi said:

It's going around. One of my coworkers brought something back as a souvenir from her vacation and now me and my cubicle neighbor are showing signs/symptoms.

 

How. Thoughtful. 

 

I'm initiating evasive procedures involving separate boxed dinners and generally minimizing contact. I can die from the plague on Thursday, but not Wednesday. Man, what a way to shift your thoughts away from being nervous about doing a test. It's approximately 10,000 times worse to imagine not being able to do the test. 

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Just now, Urgan said:

 

...we find out on Monday! After a Saturday black belt test-sitting, lol. SUSPENSE R US.

 

NOOOO! Test cliffhanger is the worst! :D :D :D

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1 minute ago, Kishi said:

 

NOOOO! Test cliffhanger is the worst! :D :D :D

 

Tell me about it. But like I said, based on the way it went down, it's looking promising.

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1 hour ago, Urgan said:

Tell me about it. But like I said, based on the way it went down, it's looking promising.

 

Yeah, you can usually tell by sensei's expression. Head-shaking is a bad sign. So is sensei putting down the notebook and watching the test with no expression at all.

 

We can always tell by what sensei teaches at the next class. "Do not try to grab the attack" was the theme after tests last summer. "Pay attention to uke all the way to the end of the technique" comes up frequently too. That doesn't mean that people didn't pass their tests. It just means that sensei saw some areas that need work.

 

I hope your new rank is confirmed on Monday. Also that you avoid catching the current plague.

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On 12/13/2019 at 1:49 PM, Mistr said:

Yeah, you can usually tell by sensei's expression. Head-shaking is a bad sign. So is sensei putting down the notebook and watching the test with no expression at all.

 

We can always tell by what sensei teaches at the next class. "Do not try to grab the attack" was the theme after tests last summer. "Pay attention to uke all the way to the end of the technique" comes up frequently too. That doesn't mean that people didn't pass their tests. It just means that sensei saw some areas that need work.

 

It would terrify me to behold a test that had Sensei like this. I think he would just flat for the good of humanity tell a student not to test yet if there was a chance of this situation. I hope.

 

On 12/13/2019 at 1:49 PM, Mistr said:

I hope your new rank is confirmed on Monday. Also that you avoid catching the current plague.

 

Thanks, we will find out very soon, relatively speaking. No plague has been caught so far. The weather is swinging back and forth wildly like a poorly constructed theme park ride, so we'll see.

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December 2019: Week 3

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Brown Belt Get

 

Tasks

Clean kitchen counters

Clean kitchen table

Change bed sheets

Wrap presents

Review 2019

 

Practice

Iaido - 0/2

 

Flashback - 7/16

26.1

26.2

 

Nutrition

No New Natural Flavors

Test blackberries

 

Monday

Well, I'm not dead. I did actually pretty well at the gym, aka what I expected for myself a month ago. I am currently in levels of pain that do not make me want to bite heads off. Goals are still well within management. Added a couple because let's do this stuff before the last minute maybe? Waited out the day, beat it to my parents' house, and skedaddled before the rain started. Got my brown belt, new requirements, and the technique dvd. Gave Sensei his present. I think he maybe liked it? I always worry about this stuff but didn't get to talk a lot to him because a - he took the new black belt into his office for a closed-door talk and b - the rain was kicking up. The storm chased me home, it was just a big ol' windy deal with a lot of lightning but not much in the way of sound. Tornadoes did touch down south of us, but nothing bad happened to anybody we know of (as of writing this). Ripped the technique dvd and watched the first technique on the list, so now I'm good to go. 

 

Tuesday

Dropped Maggy off at the vet for her urinalysis. Got to work late in spite of leaving early, because Major Highway Life. The entire day was one big fire drill for the pre-release code. I spent waaaaay longer than necessary looking for a file >20MB to test a file size limit (because turns out it wasn't checking for these things correctly...what, you're QA, you ask? Shouldn't you catch these things? I got access to the right folders today, what are you gonna do?). It was Not Good. All the Traffic, All the Headache. I was good and made dinner after shower, because 7:30 - 10PM nap happened. Nobody was neglected or starved to death. No word on the cat health front yet. I guess we'll know something later?

 

Wednesday

Oh hey look just three more days to go. I went to the gym and did lower body for the first time in a week. That was something. 190lb squat and 230lb rack pull doubles happened. Just one set, but on the plus side I did not hurt afterward? Last Aikido session of 2019 incoming. We did a group lunch at the place I picked because they wanted everyone to come and I am by far the most restricted of everyone. It was my usual diner I go to every Sunday. It seemed like everyone liked their food. It all disappeared except for two people, who picked things that were rather enormous. Then we got tea at the bubble tea place next door. I discovered said tea is the equivalent of a powerful laxative, because a 5 alarm digestive event occurred. Noted and not surprised. Fruit + chemicals = No. Fruit is weird, I don't know what all the rules are, but I think juice is a bigger problem than the whole fruit? It's a working theory. Anyway, no nap today in exchange for a two hour break. It was hard to make through the latter half of the day. Got home, told mom about a weird situation my husband told me about on Tuesday (didn't tell her then, because see above. I was shot and in particular my patience for 20 questions-style followup even though I told her that's all I know was nonexistent).

 

A family member had a major medical procedure and had a few weeks off to recover. This wasn't the first procedure they had to have, it wasn't optional/elective at this point. They came back and the temp worker that was filing in refused to give up their seat or the phone that forms the basis of their work. The boss has been avoiding them. They're scared to confront the boss because it may be the difference between quitting and being fired, but of course this limbo can't go on and is driving them crazy. 

 

Never heard of anything like it. It's some combination of a badly-run business and personal issues. Probably. I feel two ways about it, because on the one hand the owner of the company is a Grade A scumbag (either for passive-aggressively offing an employee or for failing to step in and clear things up), on the other this is a golden wakeup call for them to stop over-extending themselves and come to Logistics Jesus. Even if this didn't happen, there's trouble brewing and this may force them to make some important decisions. Maybe I'm straining to see the possibility of benefit. 

 

Thursday

I did not wake up in pain. I did not wake up wanting to get up, however, which is a darn shame I guess. Realized I missed an ingredient in my grocery list last week, always a good start to the day. It's clear most people are taking off at this point, traffic was the best it's been for a non-Friday since summer. Biggest Nothing day of 2019. Got salsa, went home. Husband reported there was a confrontation between fam and their boss, it ended in the most cowardly,  impotent way possible--boss didn't acknowledge the person was hanging on and being the obstacle to progress and tried to blame fam, but fam wasn't having it. End result: temp will leave and so will fam soon, because nothing says security like a boss trying to hold you responsible for the logistics of a shipment that came in while you were literally under the knife and then just sorta plugging the ears about work status of employees in the meanwhile. I think this is going to end up forcing a bunch of improvements, and may herald a business going under soon. RIP and whatnot. I'm not in staggering agony, which is a new development.

 

I am cognizant of the impending reality that presents need wrapping. Did it happen today? Lol.

 

Friday

Hey look, another complete gym session doing everything as planned except for that one warmup weight I skipped to make the work sets fit in the time I allowed myself by sleeping in darn near an hour. WELL DONE. Scrambled around to get a project wrapped up, took an opening stab at another one, and packed it in, went home, and slept before I got in all planned calories. Fail. Oh and USPS tried to deliver a sign-for package at 11:14AM. For some reason. Fretted about redelivering that thing in time, as it's half of a Christmas present.

 

UPDATE: I forgot to mention that some overbearing Finance department supervisor rounded the IT department up for undisclosed Christmas things. I told a coworker if they make us sing, I'm out of there. They spun up Jingle Bells and indeed expected us to sing along. I went to the bathroom until it was over. No, I don't listen to the radio Christmas music, I just really, really do not do corny-arse group singing with strangers or perhaps group singing in general.  

 

Saturday

Secured the package, squatted 197lbs for doubles, did some deadlifts, wrote some outline stuff, bought the blackberries, and sized up the Christmas wrapping situation. I think I have all the supplies I need for this year without buying a single strip of tape or tissue paper. Nice. What's not so nice is my "natural flavors" streak. Turns out most all tea blends have them, as do mochi. Had some gas this week, between the bananas, kombucha, beans, and Taco Bell. This is also a Fail. Oh well. I'm slightly smarter for the experience. Slightly.

 

Sunday

MORE gym, this one less glamorous. I moved upper body over a day and it was decidedly mediocre, but I didn't feel bad so this is pretty much standard for the holiday shuffle. I'm just keeping my head above water until a - the holidays are over and b - I get some kind of consistency with doing all of the big 4. Did my usual brunch deal, hit up Home Depot to scope out my Christmas/birthday present of a storm door. Yes, it's that sexy over here, folks. The real present is getting it and getting it installed this decade. Did I mention the other half was flipping the washer and dryer back to the washer on the left and dryer on the right configuration that the rest of the US has if they sit the units side by side? Well, it's been a brisk 4 years in this house with shuffling wet laundry around two doors clapping one another (good times....), but we got it, fam. Turned out they'd been avoiding an easy fix. LOL. Well, anyway, did laundry and made dinner as if this were a normal Sunday, because to husband it was, but I am off until January 2nd. Yes. Part of the dinner preparation was making a home for the knives I bought, which turned into me cleaning the counter tops. Who am I even? Also got my tea put up so I don't look like a tea hoarder. I polished off the night by working on outline and digging up a story file to compare notes on some things. On the one hand, 4 year old writing that doesn't suck is a plus. On the other, it's going to take a lot of reworking to make it....well, work with the new framing of the same plot. This tale has gone through a LOT of revisions, now I'm pondering how to couch it in another story (to do a series of flashbacks or not to do a series of flashbacks....that is the question). So many questions there. Went to sleep at a not-absurd hour given there would be no consequences for absurd bedtimes for the time being, except maybe gym time sucking more than it likely will. The DOMS is real.

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Making a note that I have written out the Clif's Notes version of my year and have worked on outline, it's just not enough to mark anything off the list yet. Really giving this some time to sink in before establishing 2020 goals.

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Congratulations on getting your brown belt!

 

On 12/16/2019 at 9:44 AM, Urgan said:

It would terrify me to behold a test that had Sensei like this. I think he would just flat for the good of humanity tell a student not to test yet if there was a chance of this situation. I hope.

 

Yeah, our sensei has the same approach. She will tell a student to wait if there are too many problems with their practice test. I've been to seminars where there was a testing board of senior instructors and seen one of the most senior people respond that way. Thankfully the candidate was not from our dojo. I expect there was some discussion about standards at the instructors meeting later.

 

Actually, I can see that testing standards are going to be an issue in the larger aikido community as time passes. There are already substantial differences between the requirements of the different organizations in the US. The original set of uchi-deshi from Japan did not agree on standards, and their successors are struggling to agree on criteria. The few organizations that are still run by senior Japanese instructors can observe and hopefully make better plans.

 

Yay for good lifts!

 

You are so on top of things having goals worked out already. I feel like 2019 just zoomed by. I should take some time over break to review and reflect.

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32 minutes ago, Mistr said:

Yeah, our sensei has the same approach. She will tell a student to wait if there are too many problems with their practice test. I've been to seminars where there was a testing board of senior instructors and seen one of the most senior people respond that way. Thankfully the candidate was not from our dojo. I expect there was some discussion about standards at the instructors meeting later.

 

Actually, I can see that testing standards are going to be an issue in the larger aikido community as time passes. There are already substantial differences between the requirements of the different organizations in the US. The original set of uchi-deshi from Japan did not agree on standards, and their successors are struggling to agree on criteria. The few organizations that are still run by senior Japanese instructors can observe and hopefully make better plans.

 

Testing standards does me a concern the more I think about, in the abstract sense of global practice standards down to a specific dojo. I have decided the operating intensity of this dojo fits my lifestyle and this brown - black range needs to feature a refinement process for prior techniques. Sometimes I have to stop and verify that I am in fact doing the correct version of a technique, by which I mean the correct limbs are forward. This is harder than it has any right to be, but my defense is this is taking place after dark on a weeknight, all brain cells remaining are holding on by a thread. 

 

I mean, if we wanted to be up against maximum intensity and violence there's boxing, BJJ, and the more hardcore karate schools. Not that there's anything wrong with those things, they do have their appeal, but the appeal is invisible after 8PM lol. You know? 

 

38 minutes ago, Mistr said:

Yay for good lifts!

 

Stay tuned for Fallout: The Day After lol. Seriously, if I don't feel like I've been beaten on Thursday then I will be very encouraging.

 

42 minutes ago, Mistr said:

You are so on top of things having goals worked out already. I feel like 2019 just zoomed by. I should take some time over break to review and reflect.

 

It does force you to acknowledge and Deal With things that keep buzzing around the brain month in and month out. Sometimes things just aren't that important, sometimes they suddenly become very, very important. Lists are great in that it makes analysis more or less a snap. I'd like to think my retrospective will be Entertaining in some fashion.

 

 

 

 

I've gone to doing Weekly update posts, still updating daily. Its obvious downside is it isn't pinging every time I update, right? But then you might like that. Maybe?? It's easier on me in that I don't have to do as much work and the week's stuff is all right there. I'm sure other things will make themselves felt as time goes on.

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16 hours ago, Urgan said:

Testing standards does me a concern the more I think about, in the abstract sense of global practice standards down to a specific dojo. I have decided the operating intensity of this dojo fits my lifestyle and this brown - black range needs to feature a refinement process for prior techniques. Sometimes I have to stop and verify that I am in fact doing the correct version of a technique, by which I mean the correct limbs are forward. This is harder than it has any right to be, but my defense is this is taking place after dark on a weeknight, all brain cells remaining are holding on by a thread. 

 

I mean, if we wanted to be up against maximum intensity and violence there's boxing, BJJ, and the more hardcore karate schools. Not that there's anything wrong with those things, they do have their appeal, but the appeal is invisible after 8PM lol. You know? 

 

Yes, we have similar conversations about how aikido is different from BJJ and MMA all the time. As I understand it, the goal of aikido is to be able to diffuse a violent situation with as little damage as possible to everyone involved. That does not necessarily mean no damage, especially if the attacker does not know how to fall safely. Sensei says it means we understand the full range of responses from putting the person on the ground for a conversation about their issues to a fast and lethal end of the conflict. That makes aikido different from the competition-based martial arts where there are rules of engagement. Aikido has ethical principles but not rules.

 

Progression in aikido is a bit odd. You spend all this time in the kyu ranks learning how to do techniques precisely and correctly. Then in the dan ranks you learn how to let go of technique completely and use the underlying principles dynamically in the moment.

 

16 hours ago, Urgan said:

I've gone to doing Weekly update posts, still updating daily. Its obvious downside is it isn't pinging every time I update, right? But then you might like that. Maybe?? It's easier on me in that I don't have to do as much work and the week's stuff is all right there. I'm sure other things will make themselves felt as time goes on.

 

Less work for you is good. My feed doesn't ping me, so that's not an issue. I like hearing about the everyday stuff in my friend's lives.

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9 minutes ago, Mistr said:

Yes, we have similar conversations about how aikido is different from BJJ and MMA all the time. As I understand it, the goal of aikido is to be able to diffuse a violent situation with as little damage as possible to everyone involved. That does not necessarily mean no damage, especially if the attacker does not know how to fall safely. Sensei says it means we understand the full range of responses from putting the person on the ground for a conversation about their issues to a fast and lethal end of the conflict. That makes aikido different from the competition-based martial arts where there are rules of engagement. Aikido has ethical principles but not rules.

 

This is true. The arts are so different, from watching black belt level demonstration. 

 

14 minutes ago, Mistr said:

Progression in aikido is a bit odd. You spend all this time in the kyu ranks learning how to do techniques precisely and correctly. Then in the dan ranks you learn how to let go of technique completely and use the underlying principles dynamically in the moment.

 

Or at the least worrying about doing them precisely and correctly lol. The emphasis definitely changes when we feel like we're doing black-belt-esque experimentation. Like yesterday. We did yokomenuchi sankyo variations. One of them was a one-handed version in recognition that one of the teachers was one-armed by a shoulder issue that is slowly healing. It goes like this:

 

1 - yokomenuchi strike comes in

2 - intercept by your one hand

3 - turn and find sankyo grip 

4 - turn again (this is the part where I will often get lost as to which way to turn...)

 

You are now more-or-less facing uke while holding sankyo

 

5 - pour uke's hand/arm down their own back, taking them to the floor

6 - knee goes to uke's back, gently pull up on the arm you've been controlling until they tap, cry, etc.

 

1 hour ago, Mistr said:

Less work for you is good. My feed doesn't ping me, so that's not an issue. I like hearing about the everyday stuff in my friend's lives.

 

Okay cool. I'm not sure if it annoys some people or not (no comment, no vote lol), but if too much content is an issue, this sure fixes that.

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December 2019: Week 4

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'Tis the Season

 

Tasks

Clean kitchen table

Change bed sheets

Wrap presents

 

Practice

Iaido - 2/2

 

Flashback - 17/17

26.1

26.2

 

Nutrition

No New Natural Flavors - FAIL

Test blackberries

 

Monday

Got up marginally earlier than the last two days? I packed for the overnight Christmas stay. All the contingencies ever. Gym time happened and it was just a big thing. I have damaged the outer layer of skin on my fingers with the amount of chalk required to do rack pulls. I squatted a max set of 190lbs on fried drumsticks, then moved on to hand murder. An almost-triple of 225lbs, an actual triple of 225, and 3 sets of 215lb triples. I. Was. Done.

 

Tuesday

I did iaido practice? WTF. Yeah, I know, right? Wrapped all the things as planned. I got an early Christmas present for myself by not only breezing through several sections (there are actually 17...there have always been 17...I cannot count, Jesus help me basic arithmetic is really helpful for successful adult life), but also finding a solution to allow things to happen the way I want at the end of this flashback marathon. YAY. I ate like a trash panda--tea, smoked salmon and chocolate chips, salty lime tortilla chips and Frito's bean dip that I went for in spite of Natural Flavorings because all I'd had that day was a few ounces of fish and chocolate, it was 5PM and an hour and a half until prime rib, tater, and squash. Mochi, more tea, more chocolate chips. More or less, that was my day. Limiting the fakeness has not been a thing that has happened quite as well as I'd wanted, but hey I know what I did. 

 

Wednesday

Christmas happened. I got two books, a car radio, and some other things. Food was oddly better in quality today than yesterday, no idea why it has to be this way. Eggs, bacon, and a chicken sausage for brunch. Shockingly little drama occurred this day--and not just at our house. There were some frustrating elements, between BIL/SIL talking of doing a Whole 30 together and struggling with the fact that she very much has a specific problem with some ingredient that goes into biscuits. It's not denial, it's just working up to putting action the understanding that biscuits = 5 hours of pain now. I'm not unsympathetic to this, but my patience is tested a wee bit and I have to tell it to simmer down--they just have to get bad off enough to want it enough to do the thing.

 

MIL takes pills/drinks stool softener rather than confront dietary choices that are evidently very not okay for her. Same MIL is clinging to the idea of spot-reducing fat for the same reason she'd rather pill up than woman up. Hard truths were handed out very diplomatically and nicely, I promise--she wants to change the way her body looks, it's more about dietary choices than activity, and suggested the big four. She suggested she needed to do something to "get in shape" first, like me. I told her what I have done is exclusively the big four. Lol. Hard work is hard. I additionally suggested she could do a bodybuilding routine like she used to do, it will just either take longer or be more complex. This is not a great comfort "easy works just as well as hard", but hey she follows me on Instagram and knows I'm not talking out my butt.  She keeps "Introducing" me to her bodybuilding/PT cousin as a topic of conversation that I've met in person three times and who once took a look at me and thought what I wanted to hear was a personal prescription for cardio. I told her that felt like a slap in the face, that I was really disappointed in him that he cannot tell what I am going for. She didn't get it. Nevermind the worlds of difference between bodybuilding and strength training, but I can't expect her at her level of understanding to get that, either. She has a breadth of knowledge across many industries, but the depth is pinprick level. And to be fair, she always says she wants to get back to the gym, so the positive intention is there, but again execution is everything. I'm not gonna lie to family just for the sake of the fragile house of cards they've constructed to protect themselves from the actual working solutions to their problems, but I'm really, really not interested in hurting anybody either and I feel I succeeded. This is not the first or second time I have delivered a message like this to her, so I'm getting close to shrugging this matter off going forward. Horses, water, drinking.

 

FIL, who has had his second knee replacement recently, was much more motivated to do so after his physical therapy. To him I stressed find something you really like to do in the gym and do it, because you're much more likely to do it if you like it. A lot of enthusiastic agreement there, which pleased me. He's down 30lbs inadvertently, which is a heck of a mood boost, yeah?

 

We'll be doing this one more time for New Year's, which will be nice, but days like these always leave me feeling like a combination of a lost child and a college student whose lower brain is screaming at them that they have exams to deal with even though no, they don't because they're all done now. All of this on less sleep than I've been getting, which meant I had to take a tiny 3 hour nap to do some half-hearted stab at dinner and writing this. I've kept up with Japanese practice. The world does not end because of holidays. 

 

Merry Christmas, Errbody. Hope you got what you wanted out the day, whether that was a gift, time with other people, or just peace and quiet.

 

Thursday

I sat around and did very little most of the day. Then I wrote a lot.

 

Friday

Did some house chores, survived an unspectacular gym session, and had a eureka moment over some bacon, eggs, and hashbrowns. Nice. Wrote lots.

 

Eeeeeeeeeey Weekend

Gym on Saturday did not go to plan. I wrote a whole lot, finished up the FLASHBACK SECTIONS FTW. Ate a blackberry on an empty stomach, did not turn inside out. Cool. Sunday I ate more diner food, read more in Blackdog as per the usual. I don't mention it a lot, but I'm just reading the book in little bits because it's like the most potent writing motivation ever? Also a really good book that I'm just savoring, knowing there are four more books where that came from, to speak nothing of what I already own LOL. Changed bed sheets, cleaned off the kitchen table, rotated the mugs in our cabinet so we can, you know, get to the ones that are our current favorites? Husband changed the fridge water filter. Made beef stew. So....in other words, ladies and gents, I have discovered a standard low enough that I can meet it. WHEE. 

 

2019 Year-end post-mortem coming eventually. Stay tuned for that.

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On 12/23/2019 at 4:15 PM, Mistr said:

I love the seasonal gif. :love_heart:

 

Happy Holidays!

 

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays. Hope the New Year is a good one. 

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2019 RECAP

fireworks new years happy new years GIF

Posted Now Because the NF Site Decided to Have a Seizure on NYE!

 

Well 2019 has come and gone, here we are again at New Year's Eve. 2020 is upon us, so what did I learn over the last 365 days? Let's go down memory lane.

 

A recap of the Notable Events:



January 
I was working on training for purple belt 
February 
I started considering changing my grocery purchasing routine and determined to test for purple in March
March 
I got my purple belt, started charity giving
April 
I started auditing grocery and power bills (transition to Instacart complete), started watching Fruits Basket remake
May 
Instacart grew on me, I started tentatively considering laptop cleaning, realized I couldn't do it myself. The office move happened and it made life at the job worse
June 
Laptop cleaning saga began, I started prioritizing cleaning the office and reading
July
A repeat of June, concluded the laptop saga with the purchase of a new machine
August
Much reading of books, a small stay-cation happened, bushido goals concluded
September
The book saga continued, forcing a repriorization of goals
October
Watched some anime, beefed up emphasis on Japanese practice, started prioritizing writing goals, neck problems started. I adjusted breakfast to handle some weight/bloating issues
November
Weight stabilized down a few pounds. Pain made training difficult. Commitment made to test for brown belt
December
Neck pain declines, brown belt achieved, reading deprioritized in favor of writing flashback scenes. Bought new knives that will hopefully make dinner prep less tedious


Complaining improved and then slowly declined as coping with work became more difficult and cursing was curtailed. My to do list shrank over time because priority juggling was difficult. Nutrition did not feature heavily as a goal until the fall, perhaps the longest I have gone without serious tweaks. This year I advanced two belts in Aikido and started training in Iaido, Aikido remained a priority all year while Iaido slipped to give way for it. First aid, charity, and an attempt to make dinner at an at least consistent time held solid. Instacart was a big QOL decision alongside funding a new A/C and furnace. I found I enjoyed kanji, but Japanese, Aikido, and reading/writing compete for free time and it lost out for the time being, perhaps. I finally confronted the problems with my laptop and coughed up the money for a new machine. Reading and office maintenance turned out to be a surprise priority this year, out of nowhere. 

 

I've learned a couple of things this year--I have a lot of things I rank as highly important in competition with the less glamorous things in life, but I can manage as long as nobody asks me to clean the floor. I can really buckle down and tackle several major goals if I try. I tracked closely what was important month-to-month and do not regret any decisions made in 2019, but now it's 2020--what's it going to be now? STAY TUNED.

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