Thursday, December 26, 2002

Getting some focus

Okay, I’ve been slacking in so many different ways it’s not funny. Well maybe it’ll be funny at some point later on, remind me and we’ll laugh together. It’s not that I’m not functioning at all, just not operating at a high level of efficiency. I’ve been getting up later in the morning and rushing down to Burlingame. While I’m there, I’m getting things accomplished, but not really engaged in the tasks I’m doing. Either they are things I just don’t enjoy doing, like screening someone else’s calls, or things that are a bit tedious, like transcribing notes or determining why a Windows 98 machine doesn’t shut down cleanly. I bite my tongue because it wasn’t that long ago I was still using Windows 98, but the inner geek in me is saying, “Windows 98? That is SO last millennium!”

Then I’ll go home and cook dinner, which typically is a healthy mix of meat and veggies. Then run errands and catch up on email, bills or hang out with my housemates. I’m trying to clean up after myself which seems to take a lot of time some days. Then there is organizing and getting things ready for the move or working on my job search.

In any case, I’ve been lazy about getting to the gym regularly. I understand that if I went to the gym regularly I would be a nice little boost that would make it easier to get to the gym regularly. But you can see that getting started is the problem here. I’ve gotten myself organized enough to plan my big storage move for tomorrow. I’ve enlisted the help of a couple of friends, rented a truck, made an appointment to view my containers and with any luck will be able to appreciate the cooler weather that we’ve been promised. I’ve even gone to the bank to get some cash should I need to enlist some day-worker assistance. I’m feeling rather good that everything is in line.

I do need to remember to send my niece’s birthday gift. Wouldn’t want to be the lame aunt who can’t get her ass to the post office. But worse comes to worse I can do that on Saturday. At her age, it’s not so bad to have something new show up a day or so later, just to avoid the ‘so many new things and not enough time to play with everything’ syndrome. In any case I wish that I could have been there to wish her a happy 4th birthday in person. Happy Birthday Kaitie!!

Once I move my stuff, I don’t have any other huge projects looming, so I’ll be devoting more time to finding a job that fits me better and taking time to brush up on my skills. I recognize how easily distracted I am and how I really enjoy being able to pursue any little thing that catches my eye. I suspect this is the leading cause for my overall lack of focus and it’s going to end.


My plan is to actually list the things I want to do or accomplish and write them down. Some of them are serious like getting my weight to a healthier level or finding a job that I enjoy doing and others are more fun, like buying gifts for my nieces who were considerately born later in the year than their parents. Yes, I know you’re thinking about something you once read that proves that written goals are more likely to be achieved than ones you keep in your head. I’ve read that too.

But wait… there’s more! Now that I’ve written these buggers down I print it out and refer to the list the next time I decide I’m going to do something. Is this something that will help me achieve one or more of my goals? Well, great, go right ahead. If not, then that’ll be a personal decision that I’ll have to address. Oh sure, I’ll still get distracted and goof around. But perhaps I’ll be able to start working toward some of these things I really want to do.

So I’m curious what do you do to get and keep yourself focused?

Tuesday, December 17, 2002

Has it been that long?

I’ve started a number of entries. About 3 of them, but never managed to finish them up. Have I been busy? Yes, somewhat, but not. I think I’ve been more preoccupied and not capable of putting more than a few meaningful words together at a time. So what sorts of things have I been preoccupied with?

Well I was preoccupied with finding a new place to live for a while. I’ve had a general dissatisfaction with my living situation. I’m tired of the drunks hanging out in front of the house. I’m really tired of the trash and the ever-constant stench of urine just walking from the corner to my house. I actually jaywalk most of the time to avoid this as much as possible. I wish there was more space in the apartment for things that belong to Pab and myself. A couple of weekends ago, we moved Pablito’s TV into the living room so that he could work on the computer and watch the football game. While I thought having a TV-less living room was a great idea, it would be better to have a place where we actually all hang out. I don’t have enough company come over to use it as the parlor it was meant to be. I realize that Donna’s stuff is all over and Pab and I keep our things in our rooms only, which gives me the feeling that I’m just living in someone else’s home and not my own. Since I came into this living situation knowing that this is how it is, I mostly accepted it.

I am doing some work on the side, which is good because extra money is helpful right now. Also this is one of the two surveys that I did a lot of work on earlier this summer, so I like the idea of getting closure. I’ve been spending a lot of time redoing the graphics in the report (tables and graphs mostly) and it is mindless and easy enough to do. On the negative side, I’ve been staying up too late working on this stuff so it’s been incredibly hard to get out of bed in time to get to the gym on a regular basis. I went today and realize how much I miss it.

I didn’t miss it too too much since I caught a really good cold while I was back East for Thanksgiving and I’m just about over it. I think it’s a bad idea to be coughing and hacking on the equipment. So I purposefully took a week off to take care of the cold. I’m happy that it’s managed to run its course without turning into a sinus infection or a nasty cough.

I think I got the cold from one of my four nieces. I saw all four of them during the Thanksgiving weekend. I took advantage of the four day weekend to fly back to New York and had a really good time. It was anything but restful. I flew in Thanksgiving day and after kisses hello, we sat down and ate (yes, they waited for me, isn’t that sweet?). Lots of chatting and playing and then everyone was off to bed. I slept on the wobbly living room couch and had strange earthquake dreams. I slept well and hung around while the kids went to get a group picture taken. We hung around a little more and waited for Mom to be done with work so we could load 16 people (friends and family) into 4 cars and caravan 3+ hours north to the Baptism Event. It started to snow Friday morning, so there was the additional tension of driving north into bad weather. But everyone arrived safe and sound. Anne’s Mom prepared a huge meal, which is impressive considering that yesterday was Thanksgiving.
We ate loads of yummy meat that came from her sister Donna’s critters (she raises farm animals for fun). The lamb was to die for and the ham and pork pie from Cedric the pig was wonderful. Of course I’d eaten more meat in one weekend than I might eat in a month, so I wasn’t surprised that I had some serious veggie cravings when I got back home. The next day I took a walk to the local bakery with my cousin, Karen. We figured that it would be better to walk off some of the yummy food we had eaten. It was great having time to chat with her and catch up on things since it is often hard to find time when we are both at home and awake to talk.

Lots of time playing with the kids, then off to church (where I was pleased to see that I still remember the mass, even in my severely lapsed state) for mass and the baptism. More cousins arrived just in time for the baptism and then we all took off for dinner. After a great dinner we drove back since I had a 6:30am flight the next morning. On the way back I drove with my friend Anthony. I was glad for the time to catch up on what has been happening in each other’s lives.

I’ve had a good amount of alone time along with a good amount of time with friends, so I am feeling balanced in that part of my life. Saw yet another great Viva Variety last week and got to catch up with Jay and Danny. Played out in the storms this past weekend with Esther. She lost her power for a few days which kinda sucks for her. Me? I got to go home to my power to finish up the work I needed to do before Monday.

Now I’m trying to finish up my holiday shopping, although I have already decided that Christmas isn’t a realistic deadline given the fact that so much stuff needs to be shipped. I’m aiming more for Twelfth night (that is 12 days after Christmas or January 6) so I can still be festive and perhaps less stressed. We’ll see right? Holiday parties and plans are in the works.

What are you doing this holiday season?