Body for Life, the Universe, and Everything

Being a description of the author's thoughts on the experience of participating in the "Body for Life" Challenge, questions of great philosophical import, and randomly selected topics of no significance whatsoever

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Location: Missouri, United States

In no particular order, I'm a professional lettering artist, a yoga practitioner, a cat lover, a vegetarian, a reader of everything from books to cereal boxes, married to a very attractive guy named Tom (nope, no kids), an exercise enthusiast, and a lot of other things I don't care to admit in a public forum. I have a BS in applied math that I haven't used in over 10 years, and I can put both feet behind my head. What else would you like to know?

Thursday, November 30, 2006

Of Weather and Wordsmithing

For years we Missourians (regional pronunciation guide: the second i is pronounced "uh" if you are from the Missouri bootheel or parts south, or if you are a politician, although neither of those categories includes me so I pronounce it properly) have been telling people about how wildly variable the weather is here, in the face of rampant disbelief. Well, now I have proof. I have the official weather report in front of me.

Today's (Wednesday's) high, consistent with the unseasonably (but delightfully) warm and sunny weather we have been having for the last week or so, was 71 degrees Fahrenheit. When Tom got home from work tonight, he told me the weather was expected to get dramatically worse overnight and asked me to help him put the hard top on our Miata (which sits outside year-round, because we have three cars and only a two-car garage, and it makes sense for the oldest car to be the one in the driveway). We did that and then went for a walk, figuring it would be our last chance to enjoy the nice weather before winter blew in. We took jackets but spent at least part of the walk in just short sleeves, since the temperature was still in the upper 60s. By the end of our walk (which took most of an hour), around 7 p.m., the temperature was beginning to drop noticeably, and it started raining a couple of hours later. Right now, at just after 1 a.m. (officially Thursday morning, although I still think of it as Wednesday night), the official temperature is 39 degrees, and the prediction is for a morning high of 37 degrees (the highest it's predicted to get for the rest of the week), falling to 25 degrees, with the rain turning to freezing rain, then sleet, then snow, with 5 to 8 inches of snow accumulating before this winter storm blows itself out of the area on Friday morning. As we say around here, gotta love that Missouri weather!

I spent part of the evening proofreading/editing Tom's NaNo novel. I make the proofreading changes without consulting him, but the editorial stuff I put into comments so he can decide what he wants to do with them (FYI, this is with his approval; I'm not trying to sneak anything by him!). I found out it takes me a LOT longer to work my way through something literary when I'm officially proofreading it than when I'm reading for enjoyment; I spent about two hours and only got through something like 20 pages, as opposed to when I read it the first time, which I think took me less than two hours to get through all 130 or so pages, even with the occasional time-out to make comments to Tom about a particularly noteworthy passage. (Since I was the first person to read it, he wanted to know what amused me every time I laughed out loud.) For the proofreading, I had to take the dictionary downstairs with me, because I was working on the computer down there and I knew I would need to consult Mr. Webster, both because Microsoft Word's dictionary/grammar editor is idiotically wrong or missing information unbelievably often (and no, it's not a matter of misperception due to conceit about my proofreading abilities), and also because the last time I proofread one of Tom's books, he disliked one of the corrections I made (adding a hyphen) and was upset that I hadn't double-checked the dictionary about it even though I was reasonably sure I was correct. Of course, my dictionary was a high-school graduation present, so it was published in 1984 (yes, the year I graduated; yes, I'm 40 years old; get over it!), which means it is 22 years old and doesn't include terms like internet and e-mail. Hmmm...I suppose I should get a new dictionary. I wonder if I can get an unabridged one that doesn't have too many years on it at the library's book fair? But I digress.

I finally realized I wasn't going to finish the proofreading/editing tonight and quit. Now it's almost 2 a.m., Tom's already asleep, and I would like to be too, so I'm signing off. More later....

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

The best of times, the worst of times...

Apparently the slippage in posting every day is snowballing. Sigh. I was inspired by the commenter on my last post who said, "You can't give up now!" although I do find it difficult because I'm not sure there is anyone out there reading this. I think part of the problem is that I haven't entirely decided what the purpose of this blog is, or how exactly to treat it. Various people who know me know about the blog and how to get to it if they want (althought I doubt many of them do), so some things (things that are too private to share with casual acquaintances, criticisms about identifiable individuals) are off-limits to write about because it won't be anonymous. To a certain extent, writing this blog is therapeutic, but there is still that limitation involved. Maybe the best way to think of it is as a letter to an unspecified friend. Yeah, I think that will do until I think of something better. So without further ado, on with the real blog entry!

Tom finished his NaNoWriMo novel! It clocked in at around 52,000 words when all the dust settled. He was actually finished on November 20th...two-thirds of the way to the deadline! Wow!!! I finally got a chance to read it on Thanksgiving (I didn't want to read any of it before it was finished because I hate having to wait to find out what happened next!). It's good! Really good! Of course, I'm not biased or anything.... :) I am so excited and proud of him for doing this! I saw some first chapters of some of the other participants. Let's just say that they apparently took to heart the cry of the NaNo participants, which is, "It's about quantity, not quality!" Boy, are they NOT about quality! But Tom has a really excellent first draft, and he actually finished the novel AND succeeded in getting his 50,000 words done in November (and early, even!), which many participants fail to do. So he has a lot to be proud of!!

Tom's NaNo book is a vampire novel, which is sort of a cliche (sorry, don't know how to make the computer do accents on letters) right now, but I thought he had some nice little twists to the expected formulae. He has invited me to copy-edit it (okay, I suggested and he agreed; not sure how much of that was him wanting me to do it and how much was just giving in because it was easier than arguing ), which I told him I would be happy to do once he has finished tweaking it...maybe when it gets to the point of being a "second draft." He ended up changing the name of one of the characters in his novel after I pointed out that there was a similar character with the same name in Laurell K. Hamilton's Anita Blake, Vampire Hunter series (which is a favorite of ours, and is also set here in our hometown of St. Louis). I didn't realize when I mentioned the character name situation that he didn't remember the character from the Anita Blake series; I thought he had either done it on purpose or decided the commonality of name wasn't important. I was pleased to hear that he has ideas for two books based on this story (a sequel and a prequel), because I found the characters and world interesting and would like to know more about them. If your interest is piqued, and you want to see the beginning of this amazing thing he's written, :) go to the NaNo site, , then on the "authors" page, look up his identifying handle: actortommyd. Alternatively, just click on this link to go directly to his NaNo page:
The limits of the NaNo site (or something) caused problems with the excerpt's punctuation, paragraphing and italicizing ability, which are a bit distracting, but you will get the idea. That stuff will all be fixed once I'm done copy-editing it. :)

In other news, I had a bit of a melt-down last week (over multiple days), with every little thing (or even nothing) upsetting me all out of proportion, involving a lot of tears, and Tom insisted that I promise to make arrangements this week about treatment for my depression, as it is obviously flaring up again. I don't want to do anything about it, but that's a side effect of the depression. I definitely don't want to go back on medication, and Tom says he doesn't want me to either (the side effects were...non-negligible, even though my psychiatrist tried five different meds on me in three years), but we are hoping that something suggested by the most recent psychiatrist consulted will help. It is called (if I remember correctly) Cognitive Behavior Therapy, and involves (this is a rough, overgeneralized explanation) retraining the way a person thinks about potentially upsetting situations/concepts so that they are not so overwhelmingly negative. I had a book checked out from the library about this, but I am very bad about reading nonfiction (whereas a lot of fiction I will have finished reading by the next day if I don't have anything else overwhelmingly pressing to take up my time), and ended up having to get it back to the library before finishing it. I have that book back on reserve, but it's been a while and I'm not back at the top of the list yet so I haven't seen it again. So, since I promised Tom I would do something about it this week, that means either getting the book some other way or calling one of the therapists that specializes in this treatment approach and setting up an appointment. (Or going back on medication, but that's definitely not where I want to start.) Maybe I should go ahead and buy the book and commit to reading it this week and starting to apply it. It would definitely be cheaper than therapy, and I could still do therapy if working this on my own isn't enough.

Depression is sort of a weird animal. It's a disease that, among other side effects, makes you less interested in fighting the disease. You just don't care if it kills you, and, in fact, sometimes that outcome sounds bloody appealing. It also doesn't have any easily identifiable physical effects, like a rash or a change in blood composition--just nebulous things (such as fatigue) that could be caused by a whole host of illnesses or other factors. This makes it harder to identify and also sometimes harder to take seriously, even for the person who has it. I have had it so long (pushing 30 years now) that I don't really know what it's like to be "normal," my three years on antidepressants notwithstanding. I don't know what it's like not to live with suicidal thoughts almost every day. (Not necessarily impulses, but thoughts. If you don't understand the difference, you've probably never had to talk someone off a ledge or into letting go of a knife.) I don't know what it's like not to hate myself every day. I've only had fleeting moments when I've felt attractive, powerful, charming or competent. I don't know how to make myself happy. I don't know why people with obviously serious problems push to get through them, because I want to give up on my life even though it is objectively pretty good. I don't know what gives people hope for the future. The only thing I have utter confidence in is my intelligence, but that's far from being enough to get through life successfully.

I don't say all this either to complain or to brag; it is just a statement of facts about my perceptions, which perceptions may or may not have any basis in reality. I sometimes think that for clinically depressed people like me, the difference between us and the rest of the world is like looking at a scene through one of those completely warped fun-house mirrors vs. using a regular mirror. The original, objective thing is the same in both cases, but has been so warped by the time our brains finish processing it that the reality described by a "normal" person makes no sense; we can't relate it to our experience at all.

I think that is all I want to say at the moment about that.

I am still training my friend Tanya in BFL, although she is not doing many workouts here, as she has been able to set things up so she can do most stuff either at home or at a gym close to her, which is good because the less hassle workouts are, the more likely you are to do them, and the less they impinge on the rest of your life. She is coming over on Thursday to work out and have me tweak her routines as needed. She's also going to write out her goals and such before then, and we're also going to take "before" pictures of her before she gets any more muscular, :) as this is the fourth week of her 12-week program and these things should have been done within three days of starting. Her husband is strenuously opposed to her taking "before" pictures because he "doesn't want anyone else looking at her," but she is going to do it anyway just for herself, if nothing else. I have a lot of thoughts on this whole "opposition to taking pictures" thing, and if this were anonymous I would publish them, but as it is I will just say that I was beyond appalled when I heard of his attitude, and leave you to draw your own conclusions.

Gotta run; I need to get in an aerobic workout and plan the grocery list and maybe take a shower and get to yoga class, which starts an hour (make that 45 minutes) from now and is 20 minutes away. Overbooked? You betcha!

Tuesday, November 14, 2006


The day after my last post, I just forgot to sit down and post something sometime during the day. Then the next day, I was busy, and.... So I lost momentum. Good thing I wasn't doing this for any prizes, huh? But today I got my first blog comment in months, from someone who is trying to work their way through all the NaBloPoMo blogs before the end of the month, which I thought was very kind (and probably also very challenging, considering that there are probably several hundred by now). Thanks, Sephiroth, for the nudge that got me going again, for better or for worse!

Tom has less than 13,000 words to go before he hits that magic 50,000-word requirement for winning NaNoWriMo. He is still wondering if he will have enough plot to get there without having to go back and beef it up some more, but he's 3/4 of the way to the goal number, which is FABULOUS! And it's not even halfway though the month! He goes into the studio tomorrow with his band to start recording their first CD, so that may slow things down a bit, although finishing a community theatre production didn't seem to slow him down at all, so maybe this won't either.

I'm still training my friend Tanya in Body for Life. She is doing very well, and is very committed, and I'm really proud of her. In fact, she will be here in half an hour to do her lower body workout, so I need to scoot so I can get my bike workout in first. More later!

Thursday, November 09, 2006

On weight and words and...weasels?

After two bowls of peppermint ice cream and a pretty significant amount of cheese and crackers last night, my weight is up by over two pounds since yesterday. Sigh. I really long for the days when I could eat a double handful of candy every day and never gain an ounce, which is what Tom and I did for a certain period of time when we were in college. It is normal for my weight to fluctuate over a five-pound range, sometimes going from one end of the range to the other in just three days or so, but when it gets over the top of that range, warning lights start flashing in my head and I know I need to be stricter about my diet, and that's what happened this morning when I stepped off the scale.

Tom is almost halfway to the 50,000-word mark with his NaNoWriMo novel, as of last night (November 8), so he is way ahead of schedule, but now he's starting to worry about running out of plot before he gets to 50K words. This is after he mentioned to me a week or so earlier that his goal was to finish the book in November, even though he suspected it might take somewhat more than 50K words, because if you don't finish the book during the competition time, when ARE you going to finish it? Now it seems that he is writing more succinctly than he expected, even though he has gone back and expanded a bit in a couple of places when he started thinking that the word count might fall short. Stay tuned for the next installment of "As the word-count meter turns...."

Tom talked a bit about going to dinner with the rest of the cast following set strike on Sunday and discovering (during conversation triggered by the fact that there was a major election scheduled two days later) that almost all of them are unapologetically conservative Republicans (his comment: "Theatre people aren't supposed to be conservatives! It's unnatural!). After that, I started thinking about this, and I realized that of the people I know reasonably well whose political leanings I'm aware of, they are ALL conservative except for a few: my immediate family, including Tom (my mother is very active politically); certain close friends of my family (that is, certain of my mother's friends); Tom's brother; and the gay/bisexual people I know. That's it. There may be other non-conservatives among our friends and relatives, but I'm not sure enough of their opinions to say so. It's a little frightening to be dangling out here, nearly alone, feeling like there's almost no one who actually sees the train wreck that is just about to occur. Of course, that could very well be a form of...what's the word for believing that everyone else must be wrong/blind/stupid if they don't agree with you? Yeah, what you said. I keep reminding myself that this country has survived all of the bad politicians (a.k.a. weasels, so I can use it for the title of this post!) who have held office during its 230-year history, and despite the many problems that we obviously have, it will very likely survive another round of mismanagement. I'm happy that the elections brought in a breath of change, but I am pessimistic about the chances of true improvement taking place any time soon. Of course, I'm pessimistic about almost everything....

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

What's good about November

I'm not fond of November. It's the beginning of seriously miserable winter weather here in Missouri, and that's depressing. Cold, drizzly, yucky weather. Can't see the sun. Sometimes I even forget what sunshine looks like. Today was surprisingly nice--70 degrees and sunny--but that's an anomaly for this time of year.

Despite the usual weather patterns, though, there is something to like about November. You know what that is? Peppermint ice cream.

If I were going to choose my last meal, it would end with peppermint ice cream. It's probably my favorite food, although obviously one can't live on it. The difficulty is that it's a seasonal thing. It's only available during the holiday season, which in practical terms means from November until the stores run out of the supply for that year in late January or February. I have had some of my second-favorite ice-cream flavor (mint chip) sitting in the freezer untouched for at least a month, but I went to the grocery store today hoping the season for peppermint had started, and lo and behold, there it was in the dairy case with the other specialty flavors (like Toll House cookie and cinnamon). I bought two cartons. Last year at this time I was eating so much peppermint ice cream that it was causing me to gain over two pounds per week all by itself (I worked out the calories, and it was crystal-clear why the scale was suddenly out of control). Tonight I have had just one bowl of ice cream, although I'm considering having another one before I toddle off to bed. When I showed Tom what was in the freezer, and said, "This year I'm going to pace myself," he smirked and said, "You say that every year!"

A favorite book (Drums of Autumn, from Diana Gabaldon's Outlander series, all of which I am re-reading with great relish), and a favorite food. doesn't get much better than this...!

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Worth the price

Today is election day in the United States. If you are eligible to vote, run, do not walk, to your polling place and VOTE.

Tom told someone recently that if everyone in this country voted (instead of about 50% at the very best), the political climate would be completely different, because it would no longer be a matter of politicians trying to get people incensed enough to go vote; instead they would have to actually reflect the opinions of the majority of the people in order to get elected.

If you don't vote, I don't want to hear one word of complaint from you about the government. You had the right to participate in choosing it, and you flung it away with both hands. If you then complain about it, you are no better than a blood-sucking leech.

Look at the news. See the stories about people dying because their countries aren't democracies? Look at the history books. See the stories about people dying for the right to choose one's own government? Wars have been fought for this privilege. If you are female (like me) and/or black, this goes double for you, because many people fought long and hard and bloodily specifically so that you and people like you could cast a ballot, just like the "more favored" citizens of this country. Make the sacrifices of those people mean something. Is your right to vote worth the price, or will you toss it aside like yesterday's garbage?

A new career?

Yesterday (Sunday) I had trouble with my internet connection, and my blog entry didn't post until just past midnight, so I guess that puts me officially out of the running for NaBloPoMo prizes and such, but I wasn't doing it for that stuff anyway, so I will just keep going. Tonight I got involved in other things and somehow it got from 10:30 p.m. to after midnight without my noticing, so once again I have missed the midnight deadline. Oh well. I'm still posting every day, as long as you're not picky about the hour at which the day ends.

Today's excitement was starting my (very!) unofficial career as a personal trainer. My good friend Tanya has been talking for a year or so about how she wants me to help her get in shape. Well, she was finally ready to get started on this process, so she came over tonight and I started her on the Body for Life workouts. I know she won't be working out every day, because even if she were willing to spend the time, she has no room in her house for exercise equipment and a gym membership isn't really an option for her at the moment. So she came to my house, where there is a stationary bike, a weight bench, and an entire wall lined with dumbbells, along with me to explain to her how to use it all. I put her through the Day 1 workout on the standard BFL plan, which is an upper-body workout. I gave her the exercises that I have been using recently, but with half as much weight or a bit less (I also cut the rest periods in half on my own workout, but not on hers). Naturally I was guessing as to what would be the correct weights to use for her, but for the most part I was pretty close. She was telling me her arms were screaming by the end of it and she could actually feel her chest muscles. She did NOT like the prone extensions or prone pullovers (both of which I used as the final set for the appropriate muscle group, so she only had to do one set of each), but she was gung-ho to use them in the next workout because she could feel them working!

When she was finished with the upper-body workout, I asked if she wanted to get on the exercise bike to make up for the fact that she wouldn't be able to do aerobics the next day, as scheduled, and I was a little surprised when she said yes. Tanya is one of the nicest, and most considerate and polite people I know. About 17 minutes into the standard BFL HIIT workout, she was getting about as cranky as I have ever seen her in the 13 years we have been good friends, but she was still pedaling, just as I was telling her to do. I figured if she was telling me to shut up, I was doing pretty well as a personal trainer! I encouraged her to take an extra five minutes on the bike after the standard 20 in order to cool down, as I have found that to be most beneficial. She was happy to take my advice, and was still a little rubber-legged when she got off the bike at 25 minutes after starting to pedal.

We then repaired to the kitchen to hash over the experience (she also had me break out the calipers--I use them every day on myself--so she could find out what her body fat reading was). Tom got home when Tanya was starting to get ready to leave, and she told him how hard I'd gotten her to work, and he said, "Yep, she's tough! You know what would really be good is if you have her be your trainer for workouts and have me be your trainer for your diet!" That makes a lot of sense, because I am very good about doing my workouts on schedule and as they are intended to be done, and Tom is much better about the food side of BFL. We had a nice little discussion about that. Then she headed home, Tom headed downstairs to work on his novel, and I started to plan my workout for the day, since it would be hypocritical to be training someone else and not doing workouts myself, wouldn't it? (I've taken the last month off from workouts--ever since completing the century ride--because I just felt it was time for a break because I was getting too stale and couldn't remember why I was doing this any more. I also wanted to see if it would help my shoulder injury to rest it a bit.) While I was scribbling out my workout plan for the day, Tanya called from the road. She said, "I've discovered a side effect I wasn't expecting from the workouts...I'm singing, and I have the most incredible breath support!" She was very excited about this because she is a natural-born singer. I'm not, so I never noticed that side effect from working out, but she asked me to ask Tom if he had noticed it (he is a singer too...that's how we met Tanya--she and Tom were in a band together). He said he had, and that another unexpected bonus of working out was that it helped his bowling!

365 little-known reasons to do BFL....

Monday, November 06, 2006

And on we merrily go!

Okay, I admit it--two days in a row I'm using a line from Tom's show as the title for my blog post for the day. I thought I might not be able to post today because here it is shortly before midnight and once again I haven't yet posted for the day, and I was having a bit of trouble getting online from my laptop. I figured I could use the main computer downstairs because when I last saw Tom, he was working on his novel on his laptop, but when I went downstairs he was using both of the other computers at once. Three computers in this house and I can't get online! So I came back upstairs to try mine again, and it seems okay now.

Tom's show finished today. It was a pretty good show, but I'm kinda glad it's over. I imagine he will be just as busy with his novel and other things as when he was rehearsing the show, but at least when he's writing, he's usually here and I can actually talk to him occasionally.

You have perhaps heard that saying, "Most men lead lives of quiet desperation" (not sure who said it)? Well, it applies to women too. That describes me pretty well, except that it's not always quiet. I don't know what I'm doing with my life, and can't figure out what the point of it is anyway. Why am I here? Why can't I do anything right? Why is anyone here, for that matter? Tom says you can't wait for these questions to be answered before getting on with your life, and he's probably right, but I just feel completely stuck. Spinning my wheels. Going through the motions. Sort of like a conductor with no musicians.

My internet connection is going completely spastic. I'm going to attempt to publish this and hope it goes through.

Saturday, November 04, 2006

Finally, a break!

After spending a week frantically trying to get an overdue wedding order finished, and starting NaBloPoMo in the middle of it and having ten minutes a day to post before the midnight deadline, I finally have a chance to breathe today (since I delivered the order yesterday, as I posted before). I went to bed at 2 a.m. last night instead of 6 or 7 a.m. (so that qualifies as early for me). It would have been earlier, but I went to Tom's show with him again last night, as I usually do. This was their fourth official performance, and the fourth time I have seen it (I saw the dress rehearsal but missed last Sunday's official performance because I was working on this order). Dress rehearsal was still pretty rough, even though they managed to get through it. Every performance since then was better than the previous one. Last night, despite a few pregnant pauses that weren't in the script, :) they were actually starting to approach my performance standards (I'm awfully picky!), because they bumped the pace up a notch (I've been complaining that it was dragging ever since I first saw it; this is farce, after all, and it needs to move FAST). They have two more performances--tonight and then tomorrow afternoon--and then after tomorrow's performance, they strike the set and it's over. I think that by the closing performance, the show might actually be ready to be put in front of an audience! (I do have very high standards, though...!) Last night, apparently everyone in the cast was tired, because everyone just left afterwards, instead of a group going out to dinner/breakfast/snack (whatever you want to call a meal eaten at 1 a.m.). That's the first show in the run that hasn't been followed by a group meal, so it's pretty unusual. I imagine people will have more energy for that tonight, though, since they will have a chance to rest up with today being Saturday.

My plan for what's left of today (before I go to the theatre with Tom for tonight's show) involves going to the library to pick up the books they're holding for me (I'm in the library picking up/returning books at least once a week; I go through a lot of books! Tom goes through some of those too...), returning a call from my mother to discuss arrangements for Christmas (that will probably take an hour, as we both have trouble getting OFF the phone once we start talking), making up a menu for the next week and a grocery list for doing the shopping tomorrow, lettering the four additions/changes to the order I delivered yesterday that my client has since e-mailed to me, checking over the certificates that arrived a day or two ago (while I was in the throes of trying to finish that wedding order) that I will be lettering this coming week, and starting work on the place cards for a different wedding that is a week from now. Exciting stuff, huh? Tom would probably tell me I'm once again planning three days' worth of work (for completion in the three hours before I need to be ready to go to the theatre). Hey, a gal's gotta do what a gal's gotta do. At least I bumped the grocery shopping (a two-hour trip, probably, since the driving alone will take over an hour) to tomorrow!

I'm finding it to be a somewhat peculiar experience, this blogging-every-day business. Usually I only post when I have something in particular on my mind that I think is worth putting out there. With NaBloPoMo, I'm obligated to post every day whether or not I feel I have anything to say that someone might find interesting. I always have plenty to say :) , but I don't always feel it's worth the trouble of sharing. A lot of times it's just my self-absorbed nonsense. However, to me the whole blog experience is analogous to walking down a residential street after dark, and looking in the uncurtained windows while walking by the various houses. One sees glimpses of other people going about their lives, at home in their private worlds, and there's a certain sort of vicarious thrill to that. It's not that you're spying on people without their permission--if they didn't want to be seen, they would close their curtains--but you're seeing them in their private spaces without them seeing you in return (unless you choose to make yourself known).

And now, for something completely different....

I'll close with a comment I made to my piano teacher this week. We were talking about attitudes (we talk about a lot of different topics during my lessons, some of which actually have to do with playing the piano! :) ). I said that my take on life doesn't involve seeing the glass as half-full or half-empty. I see the glass as broken.

Friday, November 03, 2006

Am I setting a bit of a trend here?

The title of this post is a line from Tom's current show, "Noises Off." I am referring to the fact that once again (for the third day in a row) it is ten minutes before midnight and I'm trying to squeeze in a post for the day under the deadline wire.

I went to bed about 5:30 this morning, after staying up to FINALLY finish the wedding addressing order I've been working on for a week, working into the wee hours and not getting more than five or six hours of sleep per night (or per day, as the case may be, because I haven't been to bed while it was still completely dark in at least a week). I dragged myself out of bed again this morning after just a couple of hours of sleep because I had an appointment to deliver the order at 10 a.m. Delivered the order; client was extremely pleased with my work (she even paid me more than the invoice amount, which doesn't happen very often). I expected to just drop off the order, collect my check, and leave, but we ended up chatting for a couple of hours. Very nice lady--mother of the bride, with a daughter who sounds like the prototype for Bridezilla. Came home, did some household chores, returned phone calls, checked e-mail, made some notes for my website, and went back to bed for a nap about 3:30 p.m. Slept like the dead until Tom woke me up when he got home at 5 p.m. He kissed me hello and then said, "Have you been in bed all day???"


Thursday, November 02, 2006

NaBloPoMo. Day 2. Ten minutes to midnight.

I spent all day trying to finish the wedding order I've been working on. After all this, I only have three envelopes left to write, but it's 10 minutes to midnight and if I wait until the last 3 are done before posting, I'll miss the cutoff for today's entry. Tom is downstairs writing his NaNoWriMo material for the day, and he's staying ahead of the game so far. We'll see if that's still the case in a couple of weeks. I haven't talked to him about my participation in NaBloPoMo, so unless he happened to check my blog, he doesn't know I'm doing this. I think I'm just going to wait and see how long it takes him to find out.

Midnight approaches. The clock is chiming; time to post this and get it in under the wire. More to come later when I'm not under deadline!

Wednesday, November 01, 2006


I've decided to participate in NaBloPoMo, a.k.a. National Blog Posting Month. It's the alternative for people who are intrigued by NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month) but aren't quite ready to tackle writing a 50,000-word novel during the month of November. NaBloPoMo is quite a bit less daunting: simply post to your blog every day in November. That's all. If you are interested in reading more about it, hie thee over to and check it out.

Tom (my hubby) is doing NaNoWriMo, and I am really excited for him. He was up late last night because he wanted to start with the month with a bang, so he got his first day's quota of words written right off the bat, starting at 12:01 a.m. He is trying to stay ahead of the game, so he is back at it again tonight, trying to finish 5,000 words (10% of the total) before the end of the first official day of writing. He is in between two weekends of performances of his current community theatre show (Noises Off, with O'Fallon Repertory Theatre), which closes November 5, and then in the middle of the month he is going to be recording a CD with his band, so he may have some difficulty keeping up, so he wants to get ahead while he can. I think it's great!

I have been having an interesting month. After a pretty slow workload for most of the year, all of a sudden October just exploded with work! Right now I am taking a break from a wedding addressing order I'm doing in a rather elaborate copperplate lettering style that is taking just forever to finish, and after that's done I have place cards to do for another wedding and then a batch of corporate certificates to fill in. I'm so sleep-deprived I don't know whether I'm coming or going. The other thing I've been doing with my time is working on my business website. I finally, FINALLY, earlier this week finished the text for it. Now Tom is reviewing it for me to see if he has any suggestions for improvement, and then I'll send it to my tech guru, our friend Ken. Then I have to start working on creating/photographing the work that is going to be pictured on the site. I really want to get this site up and running soon, because I'm losing money every day it's not up!!

Our good friend Tanya borrowed the book "Body for Life" from us and is now ready for me to start acting as her personal trainer. I don't know how I will do with that--I don't exactly follow the plan perfectly, especially when it comes to diet, because I have never yet managed to eat six meals a day--but I think she was impressed with the way I've developed my muscles in the last year and a half on the BFL plan. I've been taking the last month off from exercising (ever since finishing my first century ride [100 miles on a bike in one day; I see that I haven't blogged about that yet, so I will at a later date] on October 1, and then being swamped with work). I've also been trying to give my injured shoulder a rest and see if that helps it, which I think it has a little.

Time to post this and get it in before the day's end! More to come tomorrow....