Tuesday, September 30, 2014

What makes you happy? #49

When my recent illness was at its worst, I wasn't sleeping. I'd wake up something like every twenty minutes to cough violently.  Propping myself up with pillows didn't really help, and using a humidifier only helped a little.

English: Vitek ultrasonic humidifier Русский: ...
English: Vitek ultrasonic humidifier Русский: Ультразвуковой увлажнитель воздуха Vitek (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
After my medicine started working, I finally slept through the night.

It was an amazing feeling.

Any form of catching up on sleep is delightful, but this was something else.

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

What makes you happy? #48

So as I mentioned last week, I got hit by a pretty bad cold -- bad enough that I went to the Urgent Care Center. I haven't been to the doctor for a cold since I was a pretty small child.
Pharmacy Rx symbol
Pharmacy Rx symbol (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

He looked down my throat, flinched, and said, "Wow." That's always a great sign.

Basically, my cold was about a step away from being bronchitis. The doctor prescribed some medicines.

By morning, I had improved. Within three days, I had improved immensely. As of this writing (about two weeks from my first symptoms) I'm not 100%, but the tickle in my throat is far more annoying than it is debilitating.

It's such a joy when the medicine works, and quickly.

 Updated 8/7/15 to fix broken link.

Friday, September 19, 2014

Friday Review #49

Sigh, so much for building a buffer.

Anyway, not a terribly busy week, all things considered, but a tiring one. I'm still feeling residual effects of that cold. On the one hand, that gets me out of going to the gym. On the other hand, I'm now starting to feel the effects of not going to the gym.

Cover of "The Giver"
Cover of The Giver
Last Friday, we met a friend for dinner on our way to celebrate my father's birthday in Philadelphia, which we did on Saturday. Drinks with my brother and sister-in-law and some of their friends after dinner. Sunday, I went to church, took the bus home, and caught The Giver, while Chris went to the Giants game with his friends.

Errands in the early part of the week. I had to mail an important package on Monday, which means I had to make my way to the one even remotely convenient post office with late hours. Tuesday was the library and bank, which wouldn't be so bad, except I  had carried around a big bag of loose change all day and the coin machine was broken. The teller suggested I call before I come out.  Yeah, I'm totally going to call you at 7:15 AM to see if your machine will be working at 6:45 PM.

Thursday I went to a REZ reading, which is always interesting.

Not much writing this week. In knitting, my sweater is ready to be washed and blocked, and I picked a bit at my twisty scarf.

In reading, I finished Beyond Shame, started The Neverending Story and Shift, and continued working my way through Team of Rivals.

What have you been up to?

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

What Makes You Happy? #47

A couple weeks ago, I got hit with a cold.  It ended up pretty bad, but it started with a sore throat.

I was really glad to have what I consider to be the Good Cough Drops.

Supposedly, honey is as good for a cough as most medications, and better than some.  The Good Cough Drops (there are a few brands) have a couple drops of real honey inside to sooth -- not to mention, they taste better.

As long as the cold doesn't get any worse, the Good Cough Drops add a bright moment to my 7-10 days of suffering.

Update 8/7/15 to fix typos.

Friday, September 12, 2014

Friday Review #48

This week has really felt like much longer than a week.

Last Friday, some friends who had moved away were back in town, so we joined them for a nice dinner.

Saturday we went to the dentist (no cavities), and then had lunch with Chris's family.

Sunday I had my writing workshop, and then we celebrated Chris's mom's birthday.

Monday Chris went for wings and football with friends, so I got to relax for pretty much the only time this week, and just bought a hero for dinner.  It was so nice.

Tuesday was book club, where we discussed Ancillary Justice and ate Thai food.

Wednesday we went to a ball game as our birthday gift to Chris's mom.

Thursday I volunteered.

And just because this long week is over, that doesn't mean I get to take a breather...

In writing news, I'm working on a murder mystery party kit. I hope to playtest it in a year or so and, if it goes well, maybe sell it to a company.

Cover of "Team of Rivals: The Political G...
Cover via Amazon
In reading news, I've worked on Team of Rivals, which I'm mostly enjoying; I completed Oryx and Crake, which I haven't decided about yet; and (I'm a little embarrassed to admit this, but hell, woman cannot live on fine literature alone) I just started Beyond Shame.  Yeah, go ahead, read the synopsis and laugh.  I'm not gonna say it's good, but it's not bad...

And in knitting news, I got "permission" to give up on the tubular bind-off of my sweater, so mostly I just undid what little I had done (time-consuming!). But I hope this week I'll be ready to wash and block!

What have you been up to?

Thursday, September 11, 2014

Inc.: The Truth About the Office Wallflower

Do you have an introvert in your office, and you just don't know what to do with him/her/them?

The wallflower
The wallflower (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
In March of 2013, Ilya Pozin interviewed Bradley Sharkey, and between them, they outlined a list of misinterpreted behaviors of introverts, and what their co-workers can and should do about them:
  1. They're quiet. Yeah, I'll agree with that. I know plenty of introverts who aren't quiet, but they can sure seem that way when you don't know how to get them started.
  2. They avoid large group settings. At least, for any length of time, yeah.
  3. They do not enjoy repeating themselves; in fact, they hate it. Oh, my goodness, yes. If you don't want to listen to me, don't engage me. If you don't care about the answer, don't ask the question.  Small talk is not inherently polite!
  4. They seem OK in one-on-one conversations but withdraw in big meetings. Sure. I'm not really afraid of public speaking. But I really don't want to network afterwards.
The advice attached to the above points really seems like common sense to me -- don't interrupt; don't take it personally if they skip happy hour -- but we all define "common sense" differently, so definitely consider checking this article out.

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

What makes you happy? #46

The other day, the wireless mouse on our desktop computer was acting up, and I sent Chris a GChat (Google hangout? I still call them IMs!) to that effect.

Being cute, he told me to sic a cat on it.

I told him I could do one better:

Yep, that's a Micro Squishable T-Rex. Attacking the mouse. Nom!

Doesn't it make you smile?

Monday, September 8, 2014

I Don't Know What I Want... Chapter 11

I Don't Know What I Want, But I Know It's Not This

By Julie Jansen 


Chapter 11: The Ten Keys To Success

Jansen picks up this new chapter by discussing how Emotional Intelligence is a better predictor of success than IQ, and goes on to outline ten qualities that consistently allow a person to be both successful and well-liked.

Those qualities are:
  1. Curiosity
  2. Decisiveness
  3. Perseverance
  4. Empathy
  5. Flexibililty
  6. Follow-through
  7. Humor
  8. Intelligence
  9. Optimism
  10. Respect
Which of these are your strengths, or weaknesses? I have a hard time with questions like these; you know that. Feel free to leave me a comment: which of these ten keys am I strong in, and which am I weak in. (I do know I'm weak in optimism. Your turn!)

Now let's look at these, a few at a time. We'll do one today, and then three a pop over the next few weeks. So today:


Are you constantly seeking more information on topics that interest you? On topics that don't interest you? When you meet new people, do you make an effort to really get to know them? You may cut off paths in life because you don't think you'll find them interesting, but it's only in learning about them that they become interesting.

More next time!

Friday, September 5, 2014

Friday Review #47

The long weekend was pretty restful. Friday we got dinner and drinks. Saturday I had back-to-back volunteering plus errands, then Chris bought some nice steaks and we opened a bottle of wine and stayed in. Sunday we went out to the outlets where I picked up some work clothes, and then we got dinner. And Monday we didn't do much at all.

The week was even less eventful.

In knitting news, I've been working on finishing my sweater , but I hate the tubular bind-off and am very bad at it, so it's dragging. In reading news, I finally finished Women's Life in Greece and Rome, read Siddhartha, read Tales of the Revolution (skip that, by the way), and started Team of Rivals.  This one might take a while, but my commute ought to help.
Cover of "Team of Rivals: The Political G...
Cover via Amazon

Pretty boring week for me.  How was yours?