Impromptu Celebratory Post

Howdy, howdy!  I know, I’m not supposed to be posting today.  But there’s something I wanted to celebrate now that Dad has finally given me the go ahead.  And since next week is a book review post, I thought I’d just write this one as something special in between.  First, say hi to Dad from my Stonecoast years!

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Pretty sure this was January 2013.

That was when he was around 270 lbs.  He maintained that weight for a while after losing 60 lbs (yeah, he was 330 at one point).  Then, a week or so after Thanksgiving last year, we went to see a new doctor who came into the room and immediately said Dad was dying because of his weight and diabetes and all that stuff (dude was a real ray of sunshine </sarcasm>).  So, he told Dad to lose 70 lbs through diet and exercise.  He gave us a crappy little paper that showed what the diet would consist of (not helpful at all), said to do 30 minutes of cardio a day, then sent us away to figure everything out ourselves.

So, we did.

The doctor said 1,200 calories a day, so I found an app to keep track of that.  Dad got a new Polar A370 watch to track his exercise and that H10 heart monitor we posted about a while ago, plus the corresponding apps.  And for almost 8 months (November 29, 2017 until July 18, 2018), Dad religiously stuck to between 1,200 and 1,300 calories a day.  The calorie app would yell at him if he was under 1,200 because, for men, that’s considered starvation levels, but he rarely went over 1,250.  He walked on the treadmill 6 days a week and did some strength training as well, but had to give up the exercise for a few weeks when the doctor put him on a statin and he had some adverse reactions.  It was hard work and I’m super proud of him!  Say hi to Dad now!

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He’s strong like bull.
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A dorky bull, but still.
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He also made the curtains, in case you were wondering.

He’s lost about 80 lbs!  He weighed 191.1 on the 18th!  He went from a 2X down to a large.  He bought a new belt a few months ago and is currently in need of another new one (he’s been drilling extra holes into it as needed for now).  He did an awesome job!

Now, we’re slowly figuring out a maintenance plan.  That’s all.  I just wanted to brag about Dad a bit.

See you Wednesday!

The Tendency To Assign Blame

Hello, hello!  Last week, I had a really good writing week, despite having a day of errands (after which I wrote a book review blog post even though I didn’t want to/have to) and taking a day off because I felt crappy.  I met all my goals and even had time to watch some anime along the way.  But looking back, I realized that I never really took credit for my productivity (not last week or ever, that I can remember).  At least, never for the little every day things.  I have this weird tendency to blame inanimate objects for my success, like taking credit for it will somehow ruin it.  Or maybe because inanimate objects have awesome powers that make me productive.  I don’t know.  I’ve just always done this.

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I do that too.  You’d think they were people.

I’ve seen a lot of people do this.  Instead of saying they rocked that day, they give all the credit to some good luck charm or special t-shirt or whatever.  And I totally understand the compulsion to have something tangible to blame for things that otherwise seem to come from thin air, because it’s easier than acknowledging that it’s all you (especially if you’re terrified of failing and need something to blame for that too, just in case).  But I sometimes think I’m weird because I don’t have just one special item I blame for everything, good or bad.  I use whatever happens to be handy.

For example, last Saturday I was feeling particularly procrastinate-y (I don’t know how else to describe it), and a neighbor brought over a little rubber rat for me as an early Halloween gift, so it sat on my computer watching me while I worked.  At the end of the day, when I gave Facebook my boring little update on what I did that day, instead of saying that I fought off my procrastination and wrote the words, I said that I wrote because my new friend was keeping an eye on me.  I’ve blamed shirts.  I’ve blamed pictures.  I’ve blamed dolls.  The more I think about it, the stranger I think I am.

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My little rat friend.  His name is Yuki Sohma, like from Fruits Basket.

Part of me thinks it’s because I’ve always been easily annoyed by people who brag too much, so I don’t want to become one of them.  Ooo, I wrote words and did all the other stuff I needed to do… big deal.  Right?  But at the same time, I like seeing my friends celebrate all their accomplishments, no matter how small.  So, why shouldn’t I celebrate mine?  Probably because it’s a super thin line between celebrating and bragging and I don’t want to cross it.  I guess blaming inanimate objects makes it feel less like bragging and more like praising whatever inspired my productivity that particular day.

But screw all that!  Some days, you need to own your accomplishments, even the tiny ones.  Especially when people act like you aren’t doing anything.  Stop blaming inanimate objects for your successes.  You did it.  You rock.  And it’s okay to pat yourself on the back once in a while.

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We could all be a little more like Barney.  Just a little, though.

What about you?  Do you blame your successes (or failures) on inanimate objects?  Do you have a lucky item that lends you its powers from time to time?  Or do you take all the credit for yourself?  Feel free to comment here or on my social media pages!

Another Writerly Achievement Unlocked

Hello, hello!  On Monday, September 26, while many of my friends were watching and commenting on what I’m sure was a magnificent presidential debate (I couldn’t even keep a straight face while typing that), I was finishing up the first draft of my current novel attempt!  Why is this an achievement?  Because I started it on February 29th.  I wrote a novel, 90,000 words, in less than a year.  I know that might not be awesome to other writers, but for me, it’s amazing!  So, I figured it would be okay to take one post to toot my own horn.  Sorry, not sorry.

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At least it feels like I did.

 Now, the question becomes “What’s next?”  For this novel?  It gets to sit in its dark little corner of my computer for a while, all by itself.  I haven’t read through it to see if it’s any good, and honestly, I’d probably think it sucks if I did look at it right now.  So, I will be taking a break from it while I work on Garnets and Guardians for a bit.  I tend to have attachment issues to certain parts of my work if I don’t take some time away from it before edits, so I think this is the best course of action.  After all, no one likes dealing with a writer on an emotional rollercoaster.

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Time and space tempers this whole up and down thing.  Sometimes.

But first, there will be celebrating.  I still have no idea how I will celebrate, but I will.  Maybe I’ll buy myself a present.  Or maybe I’ll get a bag of chocolates.  Or maybe I’ll just take a couple of days off and binge watch Netflix.  I’m not very good at deciding how to reward myself.  Suggestions are welcome.

 Honestly, I’ll probably end up starting my initial read-through of G&G without taking more than a day’s break, because I really want to get back into it.  Has that ever happened to you?  A sudden itch to return to a certain world after an extended break?  It popped up a couple of months ago, so I sent G&G out for feedback in the hopes of having some suggestions when I finished the current novel attempt.  A couple of people got back to me, so I should be good to go.  I just don’t know where the urge came from.  I don’t usually have this problem.  It’s kind of neat, and worrisome.

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This is usually what editing boils down to for me.

 Have you guys made any new achievements lately?  How did you/will you celebrate?  What did you move onto afterwards?  Or what do you plan to do?  Take a second to stop and congratulate yourself in the comments or on my social media!  I want to be able to celebrate with you.  No humble brags allowed.  Own your accomplishments!  Be loud and proud about them.  We’re here to support each other, in the good times as well as the bad.  I, for one, enjoy seeing my friends succeed.