Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Poor Performance

The other day I really disappointed myself. I had scheduled a meeting with a particular person so I could pick their brain about something I am interested in at a personal level. They, understandably, assumed I wanted to talk to them for professional reasons. Unfortunately, when they asked me what I was hoping to get from them, I baulked, and started talking about potential collaborations and common interests between our programs. 

I'm not sure why I did that. I guess it's easier to make gains for a larger group than for just myself. I seem to have a much harder time asking for help/information/etc. for me rather than on a professional level. 

I did get some good information out of the meeting - but I didn't at all achieve what I wanted.

Sunday, February 24, 2013

Community Involvement

Over the past couple of years, I've had a yearning to become more involved in our community. Until recently, it's been more at the cerebral level, where I keep up with our community newsletter, and get excited when I hear about cool stuff going on in our city. But, a couple months ago I attended a conference that opened my eyes to just how much awesome stuff is going on in our city, and how many amazing people are making them happen.

That's when I heard about Awesome London, and I decided right then and there to be a part of it. There are four teams of 10 trustees, and half our team met for the first time yesterday. I felt a bit humbled when I found out I was in a room with a city councillor, the executive director of a local museum, a business analyst, and a business consultant/coach/facilitator. With all the experience in the room - and many of them knowing each other - it was hard not to feel like maybe I shouldn't be there. But, then again, I have to start somewhere, and maybe that will be me in the future :)

Awesome London has given away one $1000 grant, and tomorrow the second team will decide on the second winner. But, what's cool, is it seems it doesn't just end at the award night. The three presenters on the first night have all been in contact, seeing how they can help each other. Word gets out, and one of the other presenters received financial backing from private donors. 

The connections made are invaluable, and it's quite possible being involved in Awesome London can change lives....very cool and awesome stuff, indeed.

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Cinnamon Thingys

At Christmas, my mom made a batch of Scuffles and brought a small bag of them all the way from Calgary. Evan mowed through them in record time, calling them "cinnamon thingys", and has been asking for them ever since.

Luckily, my mom is awesome, and she sent me the recipe.

This was the first time I worked with serious dough --- like the kind you have to let rest overnight.

The shapes were a bit irregular, and I didn't get a nice even layer of sugar and cinnamon on both sides like my mom....

...but they still passed the Evan test.

Friday, February 15, 2013

Cat Mats

One of our cats, Izzie, tends to get really bad mats in her fur. They're mostly on her back near her tail, and we think she gets them because she's a little on the "voluptuous" side and can't really reach back there. She also has problems with getting...um....feces stuck in her butt fur (or, as my sister-in-law likes to call them, "dingleberries").

I've been trying to comb out the mats, but it's next to impossible. The clumps are huge and her fur is really thick. Plus, she doesn't like to be touched in general, so the claws and teeth come out rather quickly. I have gotten a few out - a couple I had to cut out - but there are so many I don't really know what to do.

So, cat owners - help! Do your cats have this problem? Do you deal with it or take them to a groomer or something?

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

I Never

I never thought I'd say things like...

"Evan, stop licking the cat!"

"Evan, don't suck on the sewing machine!"

I never thought I'd do things like...

....spend 30 minutes making small "blueberries" out of Play Doh.

...follow Evan all over the house as he "fishes for fuffs (cats)"

...put a bin of snow in our kitchen.

I never thought I'd be so excited....

....to see a bus or construction equipment go by.

....to see a live show of Toopy and Binoo is coming to town.

I certainly never thought....

...these things would bring such richness, joy, and happiness to my life!

Thursday, February 7, 2013

A Difference

Since the beginning of the year, I've been working out rather consistently. Nothing huge - just 2-3 times a week, but I've definitely noticed a difference in my fitness level already, which is great! Looks like I'm not a non-responder, which I was a bit afraid of.

In the summer/fall, I found it was a lot easier to fit exercise into my day because it was warm and light enough in the mornings to go outside for a run or bike ride before I got ready for work, or I could ride my bike to work. But, once the winter darkness and cold crept in, I had to re-work my plan. I think I finally found a grove that works for me. It's a bit hectic - I have to wait until DH and Evan are out of the house in the morning - and gets me into work slightly later (10-15 minutes), but I think it's worth it.

I also have tried very hard to change my reasoning for introducing exercise into my life this time around. Instead of focusing on how my body changes (losing weight, losing inches, fitting into clothes, whatever), I'm focusing on how my strength and endurance are improving - that I'm doing something good for my health and well-being, not just for how I look. I find it's been much easier to motivate myself because fitness changes seem to occur more rapidly than physical changes. Plus, it's a nice change not having to focus on the way I look - something I've been growing tired of recently (not that I don't want to look good, but I want to be finally happy with what I have and who I am).

My hope is I can continue this simple plan until it starts to warm up and get lighter in the mornings so I can start running and biking again.

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

5-10 Years

The other day, my boss asked me what my long-term (5-10 years) career goals are, and I floundered around for an answer. Sure, I have a few things running around in my head, but nothing remotely concrete. 

It has given me a bit of a kick in the butt to become more proactive about things. After all, we all know how fast time flies, and 5-10 years will be here and gone before I know it. Where will I be then? Will I just follow whatever falls in front of me, or be somewhere because I followed my own path?

So, readers, do you have a 5-10 year career plan? What does it consist of? Are you like me and have ideas in your head but not much else, or do you have documents, spreadsheets, notebooks, etc.? If you're more like the latter, what kinds of things do you write down or keep track of? Any web utilities/pages, apps, or books you'd recommend to help?