"Love My Way, It's a New Road"

Archive for June, 2020

Health Check

I just finished my first Beachbody on Demand workout program. I did 21 days in a row on the 21 Day Real Fix. I wrote about starting it. The great news is I actually finished. That alone is a big win.

My weight is down and that program has directly contributed to a weekly 2 pound loss for 3 weeks. It has put me in the middle of the pack on the work weight loss challenge. This is a big win for me because I was bringing up the rear in the previous two challenges. All in all, amazing results for a soon-to-be 56 year old woman. I have another 34 to go.

I didn’t change up my diet too much. I try to stick to mostly plants. Salads, roasted veggies and the like. I do eat carbs like rice, non-white bread, couscous, overnight oats. Last week’s lunch was a tossed salad with a scoop of homemade chicken salad (little mayo) with some homemade balsamic dressing. I defrosted some homemade chicken & wild rice soup which I had for dinner. I was craving a pumpernickel bagel but instead I got pumpernickel bread and made the most amazing sandwich with avocado, cream cheese, homemade pickled onions and nova. I know it sounds chock full of calories, but it wasn’t too bad.

Yum!

What has been an interesting change is my thought process around food these days. Food bores me a bit which is absolutely wonderful. I don’t want to make much these days, which is fine since I am headed out on vacation. I really am not interested in sweets because if I want them I have to make them (that’s part of my no-processed food rule). I have been feeling lazy, so making something is an effort. I did make some coconut macaroons dipped in chocolate. They were lovely, and since it was a small recipe I rationed them out one at a time over the week. Desserts are tasting too sweet, so a little goes a long way.

I am thrilled that I am not turning towards food to find comfort these days. To me this demonstrates that my mental health has been improving and I am keeping myself occupied in healthy ways.

Another improvement is that I now can identify if I am bored, thirsty or hungry and I know the difference of all three. I keep myself on a pretty steady schedule of eating about the same times each day which helps.

The Beachbody on Demand kicked my butt and provided a structured 30 minute exercise routine. My next series will hopefully be a little easier because at the end of 21 Day Fix Real Time, my attempts were in no way matching the instructor’s. I didn’t care except for the fact I have to be careful not to push too hard on something and hurt myself.

I am in a good place these days. My stress level is manageable, my finances are good with no debt and I am saving every month. I am eating healthy foods made from scratch with little to no takeout. This keeps me both healthy and saves money. I exercise regularly, and strive for at least 7 hours of sleep each night.

Vacay is right around the corner. I want to spend time outdoors. Usually I like to take a river float or easy rafting trip, but it will not be in the cards this summer. It would probably be outside my social distancing comfort zone, so I will be content with other things.

I made some pulled pork and black beans to take along for a couple of easy meals on vacation. My son and his friends are all South Florida guys who love Cuban pork and black beans, so we will probably demolish that quickly. One of the guys is a great cook because his dad is a chef. I have a great idea on how he can earn his keep….

Let’s see how I do on vacation. Can I keep my exercise level up? Will I continue to not overeat and make smart choices? I think so, however, time will tell.

Nailed It

Have you watched “Nailed It” on Netflix? Hilarious show – take a peek. What I love about this show is that it celebrates failure. They ask average folks to try to do something that takes years of training and then everyone enjoys the failure of the effort but celebrates the minor victories within the failure.

Yes, that is how I am describing a baking show. This is a simple baking show with 3 contestants. It makes me laugh out loud. Everyone is kind with a wonderful sense of humor. None of the contestants have any artistic skills in a contest that demands artistry. It is marvelous. A wonderful pivot from perfectionism. I would love to compete on this show….I have the perfect combination of humor and lack of artistry.

I Spoke too Soon

In my last post, I was basically “ho hum, no excitement around here”. Ha! That was like inviting the gremlins of mischief to pay me a visit, so they are popping out a bit.

My lovely state of Flori-DUH is redefining the word spike. Remember I wrote about opening up and people running around like raging chickens? We have clear evidence that FL is full of nothing but raging chickens. Raging chickens that party like crazy and refuse to wear something as simple as a mask. You want to see people’s full blown crazy on display? Watch this video of a Palm Beach County commission meeting where they voted on mandatory masks (it passed in spite of the crazies). Now some of you might not be CNN fans, so feel free to bypass the reporting, just listen to the absurdity of my fellow residents.

Anyway, now masks are mandatory in stores and at work. Work that has become quite busy now that I am heading out the door for vacation. We have known that eventually our 600 employee, multiple office firm would be impacted by Covid. Now it has. We have a handful of people in multiple locations testing positive. That results in their colleagues freaking the fuck out (I can’t blame them).

The huge Covid tsunami is cresting over our heads and the leadership team is paddling frantically to try to ride the wave. I have been handed a bucket so I can bail while they paddle. That’s the best analogy I can provide about what I do to help. Suffice it to say that my regular duties are on hold as I bail water.

Add to this that my boss has hit her wall. She isn’t the only one. A lot of people are beginning to buckle under the weight of all this. She is one of many. She has been holding up so well for so long, but this past week was not her week. Her mom, who lives 8+ hours away, had been ill and is now released from the hospital but not able to fend for herself. She, much like me, has a difficult relationship with her mom. My boss has been in pain since January from recurring back issues. She is finally getting some treatment, but it looks like she will need intense surgery to set things right. Plus we have a pandemic and she is on our Crisis Management Team. It is a lot to carry around and last week the weight was too much.

I actually sent her home one day. She had a doctor’s appointment and I urged her not to come back to the office. I asked her if she would have told me to return if I felt like she did. She said no, so I suggested she take her own advice. She did.

I have been helping with daily employee check-ins. Early in the week, a senior VP who runs the Crisis team was working with me. He mentioned that he had been awake the night before extremely worried we would be getting an outbreak.

Pessimistic Paul nailed it because the rest of the week was spent handling a handful of people being tested and two positives in different locations. Add in a new mandatory mask mandate with about 160 people coming to work daily and you have got fun times because some people don’t want to be screened or wear masks. Ugh. We make it as quick and easy as possible, but you always have those who resist.

I have actually been in good spirits. I just stick to my comfort zones and do what I need to do. My girlfriend invited me to go boating this weekend and it sounded lovely….until she mentioned they were stopping at a restaurant for lunch. Nope, can’t do it. Add in that I have a bunch of things to do for my vacation and nope. I just didn’t feel comfortable with the idea of a waterfront restaurant. Those places are chock full of rule-breakers. I stayed home and cleaned my apartment. It’s OK, I have a fun-filled, relaxing vacation up in the mountains of North Carolina.

That lovely vacation is questionable also. We have a lot going on at work, so I have agreed to be flexible, take my laptop and be available if they need me. Fun times. I don’t mind. The weather should be amazing – no AC needed, just open the windows and let the fresh air blow through. We can take a few hikes, a few rides on the Blue Ridge Parkway and just generally relax. I have zero expectations except to unwind and spend time with my son and his two best friends.

Let’s hope I get to go! Everybody stay safe, keep your mask on and wash your hands!

Photo by Jeremy Bishop on Unsplash

What’s New?

What is new around here? Not much to report, thus I haven’t been writing much. I had my quarterly review — kicked butt. I cleared up a few things where I needed some direction and all is well with the Boss Lady. Great news is they will be giving raises, not sure how big, but anything is welcome around here.

I am now voluntarily doing health screenings for over 100 people 2-3 times a week. Why? Why not? I am meeting lots of coworkers, wearing a mask, feeling like a team player. The company needs the help, I don’t mind coming in early once in awhile and it scores me major brownie points all around. I am careful, we always wear masks, I keep my hands off my face and wash them. If I didn’t feel safe, I would stop.

I have a lovely road trip planned for July 4th. I am meeting my son up in the NC mountains at my dad’s vacation home. My dad won’t be there, so we’ll have the place to ourselves. A little R&R with some hiking and cooler weather.

I have joined the hordes on Beachbody on Demand beginning with the 21 Fix Real Time. I just completed Week 2 of 3. I like it. 30 minutes and I am done. 30 minutes of me out of sync with everyone, groaning, not able to do quite a few of the movements and I.DON’T.CARE. Why? Because I am still moving my body better than I do on my own. Plus I am -2 pounds for 2 weeks in a row. Did I change my diet? Nope, not really. Just changed my exercise. I have already figured out my next series on BOD once I am done with the 21 Day Fix.

My current frustration: my car door handle. The button that automatically unlocks the car from the outside doesn’t work anymore. I have to use the remote. I stopped by the dealership and got this breakdown:

  • Part: $250 – yes, $250 for a friggin’ door handle on a Hyundai
  • Labor: $150 – one hour for something that a guy on YouTube replaced in less than 10 minutes (and that included his close-ups on a couple of angles).
  • Paint: unknown. The handle comes unpainted so it has to be sent off to be painted to match my car’s current color.

At the end of the day, we are looking at over $500 for a Hyundai door handle so I have the convenience of hitting a button to open my door rather than fumbling with the remote. Yeah, that’s not happening.

My plan of attack instead is to find a salvage one (not easy) or just get the part and have someone else do the work. It’s the price of the part that annoys the crap out of me. OK, the labor also. Surely I can find it cheaper somewhere. A commenter on a discussion blog on this issue suggested just swapping it with the passenger handle. I think it could go upside down, but I am not sure. I need someone more mechanically adept to check it out for me.

Anyway, Maggie is alive and well. Staying home. Hitting the beach sometimes, but avoiding crowds, restaurants, stores. If I didn’t have this job, I would be in such a crisis. Therefore, I say a prayer of gratitude virtually every day. My passwords are things like “Grateful, Blessed, Gratitude” I remind myself every day of the good things in my life. I hope you see the rainbows in yours.

365 – Netflix & Chill

Wow. Guess what I did today. I had a Sunday afternoon Netflix and chill. Since 365 got such a high popularity rating, I thought why not see what all the fuss is about. Oh my.

If you aren’t a fan of graphic, sexy, BDSM type stuff, this isn’t for you. As for me. Oh my. First of all the lead actor is my type. Next, it’s really sexy. Yeah, yeah, it promotes the same abusive, violence towards women that people ranted about in 50 Shades of Grey (which I found to be a very poor representation of the BDSM culture).

365 is based off a Polish book written by a woman who thought, “I can do better than 50 Shades”, so same genre, same approach. Smart lady.

I see this movie as more an aid for my own sexual fantasies. Great afternoon. Let me put my vibrator back in the bedroom now….

Michele Morrone

Post Mope

I wrote the following post the day after my previous post, but meh, it sat in my Drafts for a bit while I contemplated it.

After moping a bit yesterday, I woke up with a few ideas on my social conundrum. I had been toying with the idea of golf lessons and aqua aerobics back in February, but we all know why those ideas had to be put on hold.

Perhaps now is the time to revisit those ideas. I just need to call them and find out how they are handling classes now. That would help me in a multitude of ways. My BF who got me my job, is very excited about the golf idea. She has an extra set of clubs to lend me.

I have been around golf courses, attended big tournaments, played miniature golf, but the true game of golf never really piqued my interest. It will be interesting to see if lessons uncover some big passion.

Now aqua aerobics fascinate me. Ever since I took a class at a spa, I have wanted to take more. Yes, I know it’s usually for the Golden Girls, but hey, why do they get all the fun?

I did call. No lessons for either activity right now plus things have gotten a bit more fraught here in sunny Flori-Duh and our cases are rapidly on the rise. Time for me to hunker down and stick to my apartment. It was a lovely thought, perhaps in the Fall I will revisit all of this.

Photo by sydney Rae on Unsplash

Lonely

Things are wearing on me again. I miss simple things like dining out, drinks at a bar, meeting people. I feel very alone today. I need friends in my new town. Phone calls with friends and loved ones aren’t quite cutting it.

My goal for 2020 was to make some new girlfriends. I joined some Meetup groups and thought one in particular would do the trick. Then the pandemic hit and that plan is shelved for now. Sigh.

My folks at work cannot fill this social void. They are very nice, but keep work and home separated. I understand and agree with that. I could do some Zoom meetups but those don’t fill the void.

I went on a preliminary expedition to check out some new neighborhoods and came to the realization that I simply should not move. At least not now. My spot is centrally located and I need to let things settle down. I need the pandemic to subside, I need time to settle into this area. I was being impulsive. I was hoping to solve this loneliness issue by relocating – running from my problem rather than confronting it head on.

Plus I am pulling away from the Hunter and it hurts both of us. He is hurt and that makes me so sad to cause him pain. I can’t explain myself without causing further hurt, so I retreat. It’s awkward, sad and confusing for both of us. He told me I broke his heart when I told him I had plans to see my family over July 4th weekend. It makes me sad to hurt him, but I am not changing my plans.

I managed to drop my iPhone and destroy it. I’m trying to back it up onto the cloud before sending it off to the cell phone graveyard. Now I am out $500 to buy a new one. Yep, no insurance, but I am not a big believer in phone insurance. I just did some math on this fiasco and I would have broken even with the insurance. I’ll invest in a good case this time.

The only good thing about this weekend is my haircut and color. Yippee!

Anyway, I’m moping around. It’s been a gray, dismal day which perfectly matches my mood.

Watching the 1st Amendment

Sunday night was interesting.  The George Floyd demonstrations reached my backyard – almost literally.  I came home from a relaxing morning at the beach.  I had swung by the grocery store since my beach outing was in a relatively less populated area, so I felt more comfortable popping inside for a few things.  

Quick aside:  going into a store, either groceries or other, is such a sensory overload for me that my over-shopping tendencies leap out in full force.  My minor grocery list morphed into $140 of stuff including sunscreen, facial wash, wine and other crap that wasn’t essential but sure nice to have.

I got home, showered, made a delicious dinner and was relaxing on my patio.  Ah, lovely.  Oh look, there are two helicopters.  Hmm, they are hovering over the interstate and for quite some time.  Wow, there is no freeway noise.  Huh, there are lots of sirens all over. What is going on?

I pop inside to turn on the news.  There are protestors on the interstate, so they shut it down.  I am not concerned because they are moving away from my location.  

Except they weren’t exactly moving away.  My apartment backs up to a road that crosses over said interstate.   It is a great place to observe the interstate protest, so people were stopping in the middle of the road.  Plus traffic was being diverted on this road, so it was getting quite lively outside.  Loud music was playing, horns honked, signs waved.  I had a front row seat for it all.

How did I feel?  Mildly unsettled.  I was wondering why the police did not try to move the folks off the overpass, but I turned on the TV and saw they had their hands full in downtown.  They simply didn’t have the manpower. 

I knew that I was safe. Everybody was calm.  At the very beginning I had the fleeting thought of taking a walk to see the interstate protest, but then my rational mind said, “Nope, not one of your better ideas.  Sit tight.”

I have been an ACLU protest observer.  I know what to do.  I also know that these protests easily spin out of control.  People are too angry, there are infiltrators, we have a friggin’ pandemic.  I stayed put.

My backyard show went on for hours.  The interstate opened, crowds continued and then the 9:00 curfew came and went with everyone still hanging out. This crowd ranged between 15 – 40 folks at various times.

9:30 to 9:45 comes and suddenly everybody heads home.  8-10 police cars raced up the interstate.  More police and helicopters.

I decided to catch the 10:00 news even though I am not a huge TV news fan.  Wow, just north of my apartment complex, about 3 blocks away, the protestors morphed into looters.  A Best Buy, Target and strip mall were hit.  20+ police officers converged.  Two serious car accidents.  Emergency evacuation of Target employees and other essential workers. It was a mess.  All in my neighborhood.

Stores have re-opened and the neighborhood is quiet. However, Pandora’s box is open.  I need to be smart, be safe.

Do I believe Black Lives Matter? Absolutely. Do I believe people of color have gotten the short end the stick? Yes. Do I believe racism is pervasive in this country? Yes. Do I think I am lucky to be a white, educated woman? Yes. Do I recognize that not all protesters are looters and not all looters are protesters? Absolutely.

This country is going to hell. Someone on FB put a one-liner that said Canadians must think they are living in the apartment above a meth lab. Unfortunately I seem to be one of 320 million Americans living in it. I support the protesters. I hope our voices are heard and more importantly, our votes are counted in November.

Photo by Kiana Bosman on Unsplash

 

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