Saturday, July 21, 2018

This is 39 (Month 9, Check-in 1)

It's been a couple of months since I've done a run down of my progress, so let's get to it.

Attend a yoga class at least 1x/month
I had every intention of going to yoga while I was in Ireland last month, but it didn't happen. I waited too long into my vacation and then by the time I looked into it, the times weren't convenient. But don't you worry, I more than made up for it this month when Katie and I went to goat yoga here in Los Angeles! I was inspired to look into goat yoga when my friend Gayla and her daughter posted about it on Facebook. They live in Dallas, so I wasn't sure if it'd be an option in LA. I was so happy when I discovered that the only place in LA was just a few miles away from home.

Goat yoga is as ridiculous as it sounds. I have no clue who came up with the idea, but it is equal parts silly and hilarious. In our class, there were two goats who just roamed around the studio and would walk between your legs while you were in Warrior pose and would also jump on your back if you were in Child's pose or Cat/Cow pose. There was one woman who walked around with the goats, coaxing them with little treats and another who would clean up after them. Because listen. When the goat's gotta go to the bathroom, they just go wherever. When this happens in class, you're supposed to yell out "Blessings!" so the handlers know they need to clean up a mess. At the end of the class one of the goats relieved himself right behind me and my mat, but luckily not on my mat. So phew.

Katie and I had a really good time. It's not like the best class to take if you want a real yoga workout. But you can certainly get in enough of a workout for it to be worthwhile. And I mean come on, you can say you worked out with a goat on your back!

Be mindful of communication: try not to say anything about someone I wouldn't want them overhearingI'm doing okay okay job on this goal but could probably benefit from putting some additional intention towards this one. Overall, I'm being mindful of what I say, but I wouldn't say I'm 100% consistent with it. So...something to consider in the final three months of This is 39.

Blog at least 2x/month about my goals and progress
I waited too long this month cause I'm gonna hafta cram. But yes. This isn't a goal I struggle with accomplishing each month.

Buy and use really good eye cream every day
Check! The eye cream I purchased when I first started this ditty is almost gone. So I'm gonna hafta replace that. But this has become a habit that I don't have to think about too much, which is nice.

Call my grandparents 1x/week
Yep. Calling my grandmother is one of my favorite parts of the week. And as I've mentioned before, I love that she counts on and looks forward to it. It's been one of my favorite goals this year because there's a closeness between me and my grandmother that didn't exist before just because we both know what's going on in each other's life.

Camp at/near the beach
This one hasn't happened yet and based on my crazy travel coming up for work (and weddings and 40th birthday parties), I'm concerned that it may not happen. But...I'm also not prepared to call it yet.

Create a solid emergency savings fundI'm not making as much progress on this as I'd like, but at the same time we still don't have any credit card debt, so that's rad. And I think in the next few months, we will have a tiny cushion that I can continue to build upon in the next decade.

Date night with Steve at least one night a week (when I'm not traveling for work)
I will admit I've been a bit lazy with this one and we need to spice up our date nights. Part of the problem is that work has been bonkers lately and I'm so into my half marathon training and still keeping up with my resistance training so by the end of the night I Am Toast. Plus Steve is in Summer Steve mode, so it's not a good mashup. I'm hoping I'll find the motivation to be more adventurous with our date nights, but for now, they've been mostly about making dinner together, going to the movies and enjoying other routine things where we just get to be in each other's company.

Denver trip with my twin to see the twins
This one hasn't happened yet and there's a chance it may not happen. But there's also a chance that it may happen next month if a bachelorette party lands me there. We'll see. If we don't go in August, I don't know that I'll be able to squeeze it into the month of September, but I'll certainly try- especially if Katie is up for it.

Do a Segway tour
This has not happened, but it will absolutely happen and I can't wait. If I do go to Denver, this would be a good thing to consider. But it may be something fun to do in one of the cities I have to travel to for work as well. Detroit is an intriguing thought, but I don't know that I'd have the time for it. If I have to do this along Venice Beach, I will!

Get 4 facials and 4 massages
Yep! Last month I got a heavenly facial at Burke-Williams (thanks to some gift cards I received for Christmas/Valentine's Day) and I've now exceeded this self-care goal. And I think I'll continue to over-achieve on this goal too- especially since I have more gift cards to use. I do love this goal and appreciate that I no longer cringe at massages and that the facials help solidify the skincare routine I've got going at home.

Get my photography hanging up somewhere in public
I actually brought a couple of my photos of Percy home with me when I was in in Ireland in June. I had two photos blown up of Percy and the intention was that they would go up in the Thatch. I should have made that happen when I was there in June, but if I have to, I'll do it when I'm there in October. I have a couple of other photo ideas as well that I may set in motion. While I had hoped this would be a little more organic- like part of a photography exhibit or something like that- I think it's a goal I can still make happen.

Go to Weight Watchers meetings every week (I'm in the country)
I missed my first meeting three weeks ago. It's because I was eating like crap and didn't want to face the music. But. I stopped that nonsense and went two weeks ago to settle up, if you will, and it's been back on track ever since. It's good for me to have that level of accountability. This goal absolutely keeps me honest. And I do enjoy Weight Watchers (for the most part) and I love going and weighing-in and starting a new week of better eating.

Hike 1x/month
More on this in the next update

Journal at least 4x/week
I've slipped a little bit on this one. Because I typically write at night and I'm wicked tired by the time I fall into bed, some weeks I haven't been writing all four days. But I'm okay with that. I think this is one of those goals that will net out by the end of the year. I think I'll hit the number (208), but it won't have been from doing it 4x/week. I also think I'll need a new journal by the end of This is 39. Which for someone like me who really likes stationery and journals, this excites me more than it should 😛.

Learn how to properly apply eye liner
I practiced some while I was in Ireland (thanks Robin!), but I need to work on this one more. I know I'll accomplish this goal within the next three months. But so far I can't say that I've mastered eyeliner application.

Milk a cow (in Ireland)
I went to great lengths to try and cross this off my list while I was in Ireland in June, but it turns out that milking cows is almost entirely done by machines now. At one point a few days before I left Ireland, I stood in the middle of the Thatch (it was a locals night, so it wasn't filled with tourists or people there for music and dancing) and asked the bar filled with farmers who knew someone who had some cows I could milk. And ya know what, no one did. It's such a bummer. I'm hoping we can make something happen when I'm there in October for the 40th birthday party. But who knew it would be so hard to find a cow to milk in Ireland? (Not me!)

Nurture my marriage
It's been a rough summer for Steve. He's wanted to make some major professional changes that we just can't make happen yet. So it's been really challenging figuring out the best way to support him throughout all of this. I keep coming back to trying to listen and be supportive instead of being judgmental and reminding him what he can't do. And then I'm still trying to do the little things- like his laundry so he can really enjoy being on break, saying yes more than no (to things he wants to do when I don't feel like it, including restaurants to go out to or things to eat for dinner), leaving little notes here and there and generally trying to make life more pleasant for him (which makes life more pleasant for me too).

But August is when my work travel starts up and it's also when Summer Steve turns into School Steve and that has historically been challenging for us. So I'm keen to get ahead of this so we can be smarter about the ways we can support each other and nurture our marriage so we don't end up in a bad place.

Organize and back-up photos
Thanks to Cyrena (again) I've made more progress with this. But it's honestly one of those never ending projects. I am hoping that I've fully organized and backed-up all of my past photos by the time my birthday rolls around so that moving forward it won't be such a bitch of a project. Right now it's so painful because there are thousands and thousands and thousands of photos to go through and categorize and organize. I know I'll get there, but oof, this one is insanely time consuming.

Plan a kick ass 40th birthday trip
Katie and I are slowly putting plans in place for our 40th in Ireland. People have already bought tickets (eeeek- so exciting) and we've got a Facebook group going for people to talk through plans and stuff. (If you haven't been invited to it and you're thinking of going, let me know and I'll happily add you to the private FB group). One thing I really want to nail down soon is the transportation plan for the night of the party. The Thatch is three miles outside of town and we need to make sure people get to and from the pub responsibly. I'm also looking forward to putting together suggestions of things for people to do during the days that they're there. It's crazy that it's just about three freaking months away. Woah! It's going to be so much fun though and I seriously can't wait!

Read 20 books
This is another goal I crossed off the list. Since my last major update, I've read:

A Higher Loyalty: Truth, Lies, And Leadership by James Comey. I wanted to read this so I could make my own decisions about this man and the pivotal role he played in the 2016 election. The book was a little slow at times, super interesting at other times, and overall a good read. I had no clue he was part of the investigation that led to Martha Stewart in jail, for example. Would I recommend it? I guess so. I got the book from the library and it was a good library book, but not something I need to own.

My Not So Perfect Life by Sophie Kinsella. We chose this book for our work book club and since it was nearly 500 pages, I brought it with me to Ireland. Well, as it turns out, I finished this book four days into my two-week long vacation. It was very good and I absolutely would recommend it. Coming off of the Comey book, it was a really nice change and a book to get lost in. I haven't read a lot of Sophie Kinsella's books, but this made me look into others she wrote.

Yes We (Still) Can: Politics in the Age of Obama, Twitter, and Trump. I have tried to read a few politically leaning books and have struggled to get started or get through them (Hillary's book, Dan Rather's book, Ben Rhode's book), but I devoured this book. I absolutely LOVED it and found it fascinating, educational, inspirational and helpful in understanding how the election of 2016 turned out the way that it did. Dan is very sincere and honest and sarcastic and he played a front row seat for most of the Obama election(s) and presidency. So he has a great perspective. I'd absolutely recommend reading this book.

Surprise Me by Sophie Kinsella. I didn't love this one as much as I loved My Not So Perfect Life, but I read the book quickly and enjoyed the storyline enough to keep looking into more books by this author. I would recommend this, but I'd say read it after My Not So Perfect Life.

I'm so happy that I've been reading so much. Steve hates phones in the bedroom and as I work on nurturing my marriage and stuff, I'm doing way less on my phone (pretty much only sneaking it out when he's gone to bed) and way more reading actual books. Me likey.

Resistance training 3x/weekI think I've only missed one workout in the past couple of months. I've done a really really good job of staying on top of this goal and I'm super excited to have not only seen a difference in my body, but I can feel a difference in how strong I feel and in moves that I can complete much easier than when I first started. It feels good to be stronger and to make progress.

Run a Half Marathon
More on this in the next update

Sisters-only trip
I'm doubtful this will happen but...maybe?

Ski in California (w/ Katie)
Also doubtful this one will happen since I blew it in the winter and don't see us going water skiing!

Stay on top of BRCA2 gene appointments
For sure. I actually have another set of appointments on Wednesday. It feels good to be on top of this and to not have to feel anxiety over letting things slide for a year. Here's hoping Wednesday's appointment is uneventful.

Track each day's food in the Weight Watchers app
Nope. Still just not doing this. But I am eating well and eating according to the Weight Watchers program. I'm simply now tracking. As I (think) I've said before, if I were eating like crap, I'd take more of an issue with this. Since I'm making smart and healthy decisions consistently, I'm not gonna be hard on myself.

Try surfing (w/ Steve)
Not yet!

Use my real camera at least 1x/month
More on this in the next update

Volunteer 1x/month (must include something to help flip the House)More on this in the next update

Write an article/short story about Clancy and try to get it published
No progress made on this goal. Must get started!

(Already) Completed Goals
Try Ethiopian food
Eliminate credit card debt
Exceed last year's Cycle for Survival fundraising ($18.476)
Finish the remaining stair walks from the Secret Stairs of Los Angeles book
Go on a solo road trip that includes at least two nights away
Travel some place new
Try meditating for 21 days in a row

It's nice to see more of my goals get crossed off. And with three months to go before my birthday, it's good to see what I need to make happen. I'm not stressed about any of these goals. I'm feeling confident about nearly all of them. And for the goals that won't happen, that's okay. I refuse to put energy into worrying about what's not gonna get done when there is so much that I've accomplished and made progress on this year. Which is a really nice attitude adjustment from someone who usually isn't capable of such rational thinking!

I'm excited to see what I get done in the next three months and how close I get to crossing nearly all of these things off my This is 39 goal list!

As always, thank you for coming along for the ride, for supporting me and encouraging me, and for being excited for this crazy journey.


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