seventhe: (Ondore: he lies)

So over my brief microsabbatical I decided on a list of things I want to get done by the end of the year: thus, New Year's Resolutions, in reverse, ie my resolution is to have this done before the new year. See? Get it? It's like I'm clever instead of backwards and wrong!

  1. Get Healthy [metric: exercise 3+/wk; lose 10+ lb]
    Content note / Note this: being healthy and losing weight are not always the same thing! Health has a unique meaning to every individual body!
    That being said: for me getting healthy and knocking off weight go hand-in-hand at this point in time. From May-September I ate poorly, rested poorly, drank too much, drowned in stress, and had no time or motivation to work out at all. That plus medication changes has resulted in what is, for my body, unhealthy poundage.
    I miss swimming. I miss yoga. I don't miss running, fuck running, but I miss being able to run I guess? I miss punching my bag. I want to have Korra arms. And I have, quite reasonably, 10-20 lb I could lose before being even close to "danger". (Trust me, I'm a Taurus; we don't diet.)
    This is something I can make happen by 01 Jan 2016.

  2. Inhabitable basement [metric: obvious]
    Right now the basement is storage, which is part of what basements are for, but mine opens up to my patio (and grill, and fire chimney) and has a nice little area by the windows where friends could sit and drink wine and grill things. I've two drum sets in my basement and my keyboard, all of which I have been missing desperately. (I miss music! I dream about pianos.) My workout area is functional, but not at all welcoming. My laundry area could use some sprucing.
    Much of the storage is related to the above, which means I just need to sort it and work through it. A good part, however, is my grandmother's stuff. She finally passed away in August (I am not sure I even mentioned it here; I was too broken by it to do so) and I do not mind storing her things forever but need to go through them and decide which way makes sense.
    This is, also, quite doable by 2016, and having those areas back in my life will please me immensely.

  3. Shame room --> Craft room [metric: obvious]
    I want to turn my spare bedroom into a crafting room, to house sewing / knitting / beading / anything else I may start doing. Right now it's a shameful repository of clothes-to-be-donated and a few boxes from moving (not original boxes - these were empty boxes that were repacked with "shit i do not want to deal with rn" and hidden).

  4. Plan for the greatroom [metric: having an estimate / loan]
    I have plans in my head to redo my entire greatroom, which started with my neverending desire to replace the horribly stained carpet in there and grew into a really, really epic floor plan. I need to get it from my head onto the page, then find a contractor who can give me estimates on time / cost to make it happen. Why not? Houses are investments, and my cafe-bar thing will be incredible.

  5. Work-Life Balance [metric: ???]
    I need to prove to myself that I can, in fact, work the kind of job that pushes all of my success buttons without killing myself. The next 3 months will be busy, as always, but not deadly, so it's time to fucking do it. I still don't know how to make a metric for this; maybe I can use success on the other Resolution points, because they won't happen if I continue to use my energy on work.

  6. Mental Peace [metric: ???]
    I went back through some journal entries and I've been in a massive depression funk since early 2014. That's too long. It has started to severely affect my health and my job. I need to attack this. I realize depressions don't "go away" but I haven't tried anything really and I at least deserve an effort.

  7. Write Again [metric: get some word count] No real comments. I just miss writing.

I stopped there, since there are really only 3 months left in the year, and they will contain not only the major hols of Halloween, Thanksgiving, and Christmas, but also the birth of my newest niece or nephew, so I'm well aware that this is a lot to do in that time frame. (Obviously they won't need to be complete, but I work better with deadlines, even self-imposed ones. Better to not let myself cheat.)

There. Public posting makes it real, right?

seventhe: (Quistis: Bad Day)
I am fighting a losing battle to make this entry about something other than work.

I had a tiny, tiny bit of a breather in October in which I realized I have forgotten what it's like to have hobbies. I consider hobbies something I'm actively involved in, even if it's minimal: things like sewing, knitting, writing, those are hobbies; watching Netflix, reading Tumblr, browsing Pinterest, those are not. (Gaming is an interesting crossover, because sometimes it actively involves me like a hobby and sometimes it tunes my brain out like a relaxing non-hobby - depends on the evening, my mood, and what I'm doing in the game.) I have - or I had - many things I considered hobbies: writing, knitting, and sewing being the ones I've been attempting to pick back up, but one can also toss in drawing, photography, blogging, house projects, even running and swimming in some lights.

I've forgotten how to have hobbies. I've lost the ability - the energy - to come home and relax via activity: my relaxing time comes strictly from inactivity, ie watching Criminal Minds reruns on Netflix, or lying on the floor. Part of this is the chronic pain, the exhaustion, the fibro fog -- when playing a video game feels like a chore, I'm pretty sure that's rock bottom. But part of it is just being so overwhelmed and overstimulated by my job that I don't have even 1% of battery left to engage in any kind of creative pursuit.

The realization came, as they do, right on the back of a mental epiphany for the future universe I have planned in which I write a series of horribly trash novels about lesbian werewolves in space. I was driving home from the seminar I gave at OU and my brain just randomly decided to figure out how the magic works in the universe, which was the push I needed to sit down at my desktop for something other than Dragon Age.

It was a very confusing feeling. I have the memory of wanting to write, of having an idea, of sitting down and generating notes and plot outlines and sometimes just spilling words, sentences, strings of thoughts and ideas filling up the screen (in abundance, sometimes, because let's face it, I can be the tl;dr of abundant wordcount) --but I had forgotten how to - saying "how to write" isn't exactly it, because sentences and ideas were still coming to mind. I had forgotten how to reach the mindset of "hobby".

I've since then been trying to reclaim it, in the interest of the genderqueer vampires who want to fly spaceships, but it's a slow process. The weirdest bit has been realizing I lost it in the first place.

When you forget how to have a hobby, I think that's a pretty good sign you need to reevaluate your life choices.
seventhe: YOU AREN'T EVEN JUNCTIONED (Irvine/Snape: the duel)
Lin: ONE OF THE GUYS FAKES A HEADACHE, THE OTHER SAYS HE'S COMING DOWN WITH SOMETHING AND SHE'S JUST LIKE "COME ON, YOU GUYS, IT'S JUST A QUICKIE"

Sev: KORRA: "COME ON. JUST A QUICKIE." MAKO: "YOU SAID THAT ABOUT THE LAST MATCH AND IT DIDN'T END FOR THREE HOURS"

Lin: IT'S PRO-SKIN BENDING. SEX-BENDING.

Sev: KORRA: "WE ARE WORKING ON YOUR ENDURANCE. NOW LET'S DO DRILLS"

Lin: KORRA: "YOU CALL THAT GOOD TECHNIQUE? THAT WON'T WIN US ANY TOURNAMENTS." "BUT I'M SORE--" "EMBRACE THE PAIN. PAIN IS GOOD. PAIN IS VICTORY. NOW DROP AND GIVE ME TWENTY."

Sev: "PAIN IS WEAKNESS LEAVING THE BODY, BOLIN"

Lin: "SUCK IT UP, IT'S GOOD FOR YOU"

And, unfortunately for all of you, this is how Bro-Bending Boners was born.
seventhe: (Ondore: he lies)
Give me a character and I will tell you:


Why I like them
Favorite line
Favorite outfit
OTP(s)
A wish
An oh-god-please-dont-ever-happen
5 words to best describe them
My nickname for them

seventhe: Rydia (Rydia)
This semester I'm taking my last class - a 3-credit Polymer Science lab, that runs for 6 hours on Friday, 9-3. *CUE GROANING*

At the very first class - a safety and syllabus overview - the professor introduced us to the class by saying: "This is the worst class you're going to take in your entire PhD." Which I am sure is a great way to start off the semester with high morale!

Basically, we run experiments on lab days, and reports - big honking 10-20 page reports with error analysis (and not the good HONKing either) - are due two weeks after the lab, rolling. So on Week 1 I will do Lab 1. On Week 2 I will be writing Report 1 and doing Lab 2. On Week 3 I will be finishing and turning in Report 1, writing Report 2, and doing Lab 3. This continues until the end of the semester, or until I die, whichever comes first.

Have I mentioned that they make grad students take this class by itself because it's so much work? FULL TIME grad students, that is. So this semester? I'm carrying a FULL TIME workload. With just this one class. Remember: I have a job! A hard one! It's already full time!*

On top of this GREAT AND EFFICIENT schedule come the following two awesome points:
  1. They are trying to redo the lab experiments, to improve them. However, this means that the new ones last year? NONE OF THEM WORKED. Students got to choose between (a) working extra in the lab to get good data or (b) attempting to write a 10-20 page lab report and answering all assignment questions with bad data. That's a lose-lose situation to me, but do they care? Apparently not, because the prof doesn't seem to think many of the labs this year will be much better. Great. Glad we care about quality.

  2. They've apparently run out of second-(or-greater-)year students on assistantships supported by the department, so. My TAs and teachers and lab assistants? Are the students in the class.
    Just think about this one for a long second here. The students taking the class right now... will be teaching the class. And taking it. As they teach it.
    These are first-year students. They've only been through the first half of the core - our first 5 courses**. That's it.
    So these first-year students will be coming on Monday, learning about the lab and setting it up, and then teaching it to us. While they also do it.
    I don't pity them and I won't blame them for doing a shit job; that's a shit situation to be in. But I am also Not Very Excited for the amount of help (read: zero) I'll have on these labs.


I just. University of Akron, you may consider this an official public notice: YOU'RE DOING IT WRONG, GUYS.

I'm not looking forward to this.

It's my last class, and with that in mind, I'm going to just shoulder on through until May. I'm basically making myself harshly limit the amount of time I spend socializing or traveling or doing other stuff, and I'm looking at my schedule to trim out things. I can survive this, and it'll be worth it when it's done.

My plan is: I am going to save Thursday and Friday nights all for homeworking and lab reporting. This means no more weekend-long trips, not until May (except for a very few rare exceptions, like Ohayocon and a birthday or two). Only one night per weekend for socializing or hanging out. If I get behind on things, I will take a half day of vacation to work on them, rather than stay up all night. I can't afford to get sick this semester because there aren't any lab makeups I can attend (seeing as I work). I'm going to have to be pre-emptively careful, not just careful. Or else this is going to suck, a lot.

So: yay. And, uh, sorry to those of you who I hang out with in real life, but I really do need to make myself do this. It isn't that I don't love you! I promise. Really. in my pants.

On the plus side, this is the last semester you'll hear me whining about class.


* If we factor in travel time - JUST travel time, not errands or the gym or anything else I will be doing during the week - I'll be pulling 55 hour weeks. If I count nothing but work and school and driving there and back. :/ That also doesn't include homework time or, you know, anything like eating or chores (adulthood is its own part-time job (ADULTHOOD SUCKS)).
** Yes, the UAkron PolySci core is frigging ridic. The first semester is 5 courses. Who does that. No wonder this damn degree has taken me 4 years.

seventhe: (FFEX: Doink!)
You know, I don't REALLY believe in astrology. Really. But at times like this - when everyone around me is having a shit time of it, and I mean a really shit time; when lives and relationships and emotions and loves and friends are all down, depressed, wrecked and dying -- when it's like everyone I know has something awful happen on almost the same day, within the same week --- look, I start to get fuckin' suspicious of the stars and the planets and the damn moon moving through Scorpio.

♥ to everyone I know.

I am posting this from my new place. I have internets. I still lack half my stuff. Priorities, I has them?

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