Tag Archives: exercise

Me Myself and I

[post title stolen from Beckie]

Rory has a new game happening, which is all about me.

Bitmoji legend

Now, I realize I’ve been saying that I’m gonna avoid these kinds of rambling personal posts and focus more on fiction and poetry, but the first thing you need to understand about me is… I’m a liar. Okay then.

1. What is your favourite sweet treat?

I have lots of favorite sweet treats. But first, let me announce that I’m not a chocoholic. I can happily leave the choccy treats to others… and while I enjoy a chocolate chip cookie like any normal human, it’s not at the top of my list. What is? Coconut cake, lemon bars, thick homemade peanut butter cookies, and crumbly cinnamon coffee cake (like the kind Starbucks used to sell before they made it “healthy”). I also love pie, but am super picky about it ~ if it’s not exactly right, I don’t like it at all. Forex, pumpkin pie is awesome but only if it has a graham cracker crust and whipped cream on top. Otherwise, meh.

Pumpkin pie with graham cracker crust and whipped cream

2. If you want to really relax – what is your go to?

I have a hard time totally relaxing. There’s always something (usually several things) bothering me somewhat. Idk how people can forget about all that’s wrong with this world… even if you’re personally cocooned against financial horrors, what about other people and animals? You must know of the vast suffering that goes on day in and day out, unabated. I just trudge along, I guess. There are things that temporarily distract me like movies, games, poetry. But I know the other stuff is there while I divert myself with trivia. I spend too much time on news sites, which is depressing, and I know I should stop. What’s the point? I can’t do anything about all this outrage… it just boils in my brain, keeping me from being able to relax. Soon, I’ll be moving to a place where it’ll be easier to exercise; maybe that will help.

Treadmill bitmoji

3. What is your guiltiest pleasure?

This is a weird question for me now. I don’t feel I even have “guilty pleasures” these days. I hardly indulge in anything because of fear of consequences. And after a while, not indulging becomes as much of a habit as indulging, you know? It’s like I’m too lazy to do anything wrong. Drinking? Nah. That’ll give me a migraine. Sex? No thanks. Too stressful to deal with another person. Overeating? Ick, tummy ache! The only self-indulgent thing I might do is not get dressed on a Sunday and watch movies or read all day instead of finishing any chores. But this isn’t even that pleasurable… I only do it when I’m really tired. And I’ll feel bad when the unproductive day is done.

Bitmoji relaxing with kitty

So, there you have it, Rory. Super boring personal jabber. I warned you. 😜

~*~

©️2019 Paula Light and Light Motifs II. No unauthorized use permitted. Please check out Paula’s books for sale on Amazon.

Who Needs Drama? [fiction 725]

[This is a multi-part story. Lexi Brown is trying to escape her past and create a new life for herself in Otter Village, 500 miles from where a traumatic event occurred 6 months ago. In our last episode, we read that Kevin and Lexi took a romantic stroll and she told him about her past, after which they shared their first kiss.

Here are the posts in order so far:

Falling
Sisterly Chat
Smoothies
The Angry Brother
Trust Issues
Something You Don’t Know
Moonlight]

Man in blue suit talking at meeting

Kevin had a busy morning, which was a good thing because he didn’t want to spend time thinking about Lexi. His afternoon passed similarly, in a crush of meetings and reports, since it was third quarter end, and he needed everyone in sync for a great year-end. Just because he’d downsized from Chicago to Otter Village didn’t mean he’d lost his drive to produce the bottom line results for his superiors. A hotel was a hotel after all.

But eventually he ran out of energy, even after copious amounts of coffee, and called it a day at 9pm. Now there was a difference between this sleepy town and the big city: he had pulled all nighters at quarter-end back there as general manager. Part of that could have been due to his ongoing anxiety to impress the Chairman of the Board, aka Dad, he finally admitted to himself as he headed out the door into the refreshing evening air.

“Hey, Kev.” The afternoon chef greeted him as he headed toward the beach. “Going for a run tonight?”

Kevin had changed into casual clothes a few hours ago. “Actually I’m headed home to zone out in front of the tube. I’m beat. Tomorrow?”

“Sure thing!”

Unfortunately, without work or exercise to direct his thoughts, they immediately wandered back to Lexi… and that kiss.

Kiss in the moonlight

What had happened to his plan to go a year without getting involved with anyone? It hadn’t even been four months since he’d relocated! He had thought he’d ended things sensibly and amicably with Emily, but she’d badmouthed him to family and friends, while he’d said nothing, trying to be a gentleman. They’d all relentlessly criticized him, telling him what a terrible mistake he was making. Yet, he stayed in Chicago, where he’d grown up, gone to school and college, knew everyone in the neighborhood.

But then Emily slept with his best friend, got pregnant, married him, had the baby. Kevin felt forced to attend the wedding and fake happiness, with his parents and sisters gloating “told you!” every chance they got. Spiraling into a black mood, Kevin began hitting the downtown bars every weekend and hooking up with whichever random woman caught his eye. One of the women was a employment recruiter, in Chicago for a convention, and had stuck her card in his pocket before they’d parted. Disgusted with his life, Kevin impulsively called her when he found the card. Not for a date, but to send her his resume.

She had a job for him–this one, 3,500 miles from Chicago. Perfect!

Kevin unlocked the front door of his rented condo. He liked it here. Liked his simple life consisting of work, exercise, friends, TV. Once every couple weeks, he called his mother to say hello and “liked” one of his sisters’ Facebook photos. If they texted, he’d give a short, cheery reply. No drama. That was the key.

Relationships were drama. And Lexi? Kevin laughed as he peered in the fridge. Lexi was the freaking epitome of drama. She escaped here, supposedly incognito, after being the victim of a violent crime, with her crazy husband as the perp. A cop killed her mister, and the dead dude’s brother blamed Lexi. Even though Lexi had been using a fake name (more drama), brother dearest, likely another psycho, found her, and he’d probably eventually hotfoot it up here for a dramatic showdown.

Kevin pulled out a container of leftover Chinese food and smelled it. Seemed fine. He dumped it in a bowl with the leftover rice and nuked it in the microwave. As the oven ticked away, Kevin stared out into the darkness of his patio. Just last night he had been with Lexi, in the warm kitchen of her rooming house, filled with the delicious scent of freshly baked cookies. It was nice having Lexi fluttering around him, making sure he was happy and fed. A man could get used to that. Not to mention her soft curves, fitting so well in his arms…

The microwave dinged. As Kevin ate dinner by himself, he thought maybe he could be a little bit flexible on that one year dating moratorium he’d given himself. It had been four months. What if he said six months, not a year, and took things really slowly for the next two? That could work…

Redhead with brown eyes

[to be continued]

~*~

©️2019 Paula Light and Light Motifs II. No unauthorized use permitted. Please check out Paula’s books for sale on Amazon.

Laura’s Music Challenge 30

Girl playing instrument

Happy Monday! It’s time to start the week on a joyful note by joining Laura’s song challenge! 😻❤️🎶

1. Post a video of a song that is about getting spiffied up.

2. Post a video of a song that makes you cry for no particular reason.

3. Post a video of a song that is a great work out song.

Warning: NSFW!

~*~

© 2019 Paula Light and Light Motifs II. No unauthorized use permitted. Please check out Paula’s books for sale on Amazon.

FPQ23: I Burn Whole Cities

Fandango provocatively asks…

“How do you manage or deal with stress? Is there a specific strategy or approach that you’ve found to be particularly effective?”

My post title comes from the HBO show Game of Thrones where dragons have been known to release stress by destroying cities with fire. I am not a dragon, alas, though I have gotten vicarious pleasure especially during stressful times by reading A Song of Ice and Fire and from watching the show.

In general, I find that losing myself in a fantasy world of a novel or movie for a few hours is a great way to deal with stress. I do prefer movies over series, or series that have finished, because I don’t want to have to wait for the next season (and these days, that can be so unpredictable), which ends up leaving me at the mercy of people yapping online about the show and giving their predictions. Annoying!

Depending on what the stressful even was, I may wish to talk about it privately, with a daughter or a friend. I’m careful what I say to whom these days though, so as not to end up with more stress from the convo itself. I may write about the situation in a diary for my own clarification. I find the act of writing words on a page/screen to be therapeutic.

For immediate relief, deep breaths work. For a 24 hour period, repeating the mantra that “this too shall pass” helps a lot. If I can’t sleep, there’s always the Valium or Benadryl last resort. It’s really bad not to sleep because then I’ll feel even worse the next day, which will increase my stress. Cuddling my kitty and spending time alone at home usually helps me feel better.

Here are some stress management techniques that are supposed to help but do nothing for me:

1. Exercise. I know it’s good for me, but it makes everything hurt more and I end up with a (worse) headache.

2. Taking a vacation. Way out of my budget and I would be completely stressed about the money I spent.

3. Glass of wine. This is a migraine trigger about 50% of the time.

4. Music. This is tricky because a lot of songs pull up sad memories for me. I have to be careful about music. Plus, Gatsby doesn’t like it. Mostly I only listen in the car.

5. Sex. With a man? This was generally the cause of almost all my stress and giving it up has reduced my anxiety to nearly zero.

Dracarys! 🔥🔥🔥

Seven More Secrets

Big thanks to the lovely Sadje, one of my favorite bloggers, for nominating me for the Versatile Blogger Award. When I say “lovely,” I’m talking about Sadje’s kindness in the blogging community and her support toward her fellow bloggers. She’s always there with an uplifting word and a cheerful comment to brighten the day. Sometimes I may not be in the mood for sunshine, but it is good to know where to find it regardless. Since Sadje blogs anonymously, I can only imagine she’s just as lovely in person as her personality indicates.

Now, I will go ahead and reveal seven more secrets from the depths of my soul, but I’m not going to nominate anyone else for the award. However, if you follow me and haven’t received one of these yet, I would love to share mine with you! Just copypasta the image, link back to me, and make the list of seven things. Nominate people if you wish (tag them so they know).

1. I took an exercise walk yesterday at the park, woohoo! It was about a mile and a half total, which is a lot for me, given my chronic pain issues. 😀

2. Today I feel okay (for me), so I’m going to take another walk. 👍🏻

3. My kitty has been sick! I switched his food to a hairball preventative, and it didn’t agree with him. Then all his regular food made him sick too! 😢

4. I ran out last night and bought plain baby food chicken because he hadn’t eaten all day, but he only took one lick of it.

5. This morning I went to the pet food store and they gave me samples of new food to try. Gatsby ate a little of this and didn’t throw up, hurrah! 😻

6. They also told me the crunchy food I’ve been giving him isn’t nutritious, so I bought new crunchy food, but he hasn’t tried it yet… one thing at a time. 😺

7. The cremation society has been sending my ex-husband junk mail at my address and I find this very disturbing ~ we’re divorced, but neither one of us is dead yet, so BACK OFF! ⚱️

FPQ20: The Hardship Lollipop

Fandango provocatively asks…

“Does hardship really make a person stronger? If you think so, under what conditions and at what point is it too much hardship? If you don’t buy that hardship makes a person stronger, what do you think does make a person stronger?”

Welp, I can only speak for myself… and the answer is… it depends!

Let’s take physical hardship, as it pertains to me. I am in chronic pain and have been for years. Does it make me stronger? Hell no. It sucks. I used to belong to a gym. I used to take 5 mile walks. Now, I can barely drag myself out of bed. I keep saying I’ll feel better if I get some exercise, but it’s so impossible to do anything when I’m at this level of pain, which I am all day every day.

On the otter hand, financial hardship was good for me. No really. I was spoiled by my parents and segued right into being the kind of wife whose husband took care of the money. I was told how much I could spend and had no idea what was going on. When it all came crashing down, I had to learn how to take care of myself and my children later in life. It was a good lesson and made me a better person in all kinds of ways.

As usual, these answers depend on the person and the circumstances. 🙂

A Glut of Glitches

Mistakes have been made,

But no one will be blamed…

“These things happen.”

Maybe some are my fault;

It’s hard to know exactly

Where the fingers slip

And the glitches begin…

Symptoms of the po-mo age,

And it could be worse–

It could be raining.

I should disconnect,

Go gridless and rest,

Get some exercise

Emerge from my nest

Of electrical tech

Into the sunshine.

That sounds sublime,

But I’d feel so alone

Without all the souls

Who live in my phone.

Friday Noms

Well, just one nom actually, from the lovely Laura, but there might be more noms… how would I know, since WordPress has decided I shouldn’t have posts while I sleep. Meh, say the happiness engineers, why should we bother putting posts in her feed between 10pm and 6am? She’s not going to read them while she’s in dreamland, lol! Funny guys (guys being a gender inclusive term in this case). 🙄

Anyhoodle. Thank you, Laura. I appreciate the one nom. I was going to say one measly nom, but that makes me sound ungrateful plus also might get the whole vax debate started up, though why there should be a debate GOD ONLY KNOWS. What a bunch of idiots, amirite? If you don’t want to vax, move to Antarctica. Problem solved. ❄️

I’m supposed to tell all y’all 7 things about me now, as if there are even 7 things left you don’t know (well, there are, but I can’t post them), so I’ll just jabber on a bit and see where it goes. Beware of rambling. 😛

1. I’ve been thinking this week that I don’t have enough time and energy to finish my novel now that I have actual side work that pays. I don’t have hours of free time at night and on weekends to write the way I used to. And I’m not giving up paying work. 💰

2. I have written novels, so it’s not a matter of proving to myself or anyone else that I’m capable of doing it. They’re for sale and have been for years. They don’t sell though, since I’m a nobody with no marketing resources. 🎻

(Please don’t give me marketing advice in comments. I’ve read tons of it, and it’s all way too time intensive for me with minimal payoff. I already have paying work I am not willing to take time away from.)

3. The fact that my novels (and books of short stories and poetry) molder on Amazon year after year, bringing in only a measly dollar or two here or there, doesn’t give me much hope for the success of the next one. Sure, I still enjoy the process of writing because I’m a writer, and I’ll always write when there’s nothing else going on, but then when there’s no money or feedback? Sadness. 😢

4. If I can’t make money from writing, the next best thing is to get people to read my stuff. And I have that right here! Thanks to this fabulous community of supportive WP peeps (along with a few otters), my little blog poems and short stories get read all the time now, which is a great feeling. ❤️

5. I’m tired of feeling stressed every week that I didn’t get “enough” done when I work 7 days a week now, including most nights after my real job when I get home. This doesn’t include chores, shopping, etc. Yes, mostly everyone else does all this too, but there’s no need for me to feel like a failure because I didn’t work on my novel. I can simply take it off the list. ✅

6. Ironically, since the time change, I’ve gotten more sleep… and it’s nice. I don’t feel physically better at all, but it’s so great not to be exhausted and achy. So, perhaps that’s what’s prompted this line of thinking. I just don’t want to feel obligated to write for two hours after working after work. Wtf? That’s nuts. And I don’t want to get up at 4:30am and write. Wtfff??? Who does that?? (Well, I did, many years ago.) 😴

7. What I really should do, if I had any sense (lol) is to prioritize exercise, so I could live long enough to finish all my unfinished writings after I have more time once I retire in 12ish years. Danger, danger… adding more things to list! Assuming, that is, I make it to retirement without getting hit by a truck, drowning in a tsunami, or being bitten by someone’s pet cobra that escapes and comes boinging up in my toilet bowl.

Could happen. 🐍

K. That’s 7, arbitrarily broken into paragraphs and numbered. No tags. You’re all awesome and should jabber on about yourselves too. Not you, Becky. 😀

My Way or the Highway

Another Rory and Doodle Pip Production.

Oh No Way, Oh So Way – My Way![6]

I have eaten snails

Oh So Way. Unfortunately, my parents along with a waiter coerced/forced me to try a disgusting horrible slimy snail when I was 11 in the spirit of being adventurous. It was super traumatic (for the poor snail too I imagine), and I’ve never had another. I also took the lesson and never forced my kids to eat anything they didn’t want.

Received a speeding ticket

Oh No Way. Never have in almost 42 years of driving. I’ve received two other tickets and worked them off in traffic school. One was deserved and one was not, but I don’t argue with cops.

Fallen asleep during an important meeting

Oh No Way. Not during work, never. Though I regularly dozed off during an 8am European history class at the University of Illinois and messed up my quizzes. I ended up with a B even so because I always do great on multiple choice exams, and for the essay portion of the final I simply lucked out. I had memorized the 8 points of fascism right before the test and that’s what he asked us to write about. Don’t ask me what they are now cuz I don’t remember.

Sunbathed nude

Oh No Way.

Taken part in a talent show

Oh So Way. Yeah, I’ve read some poetry at gatherings and such. Done open-mic stand-up comedy a couple times. And waaay back when in 8th grade the girls had to model the crap we made in sewing class.

Worn Crocs

Oh No Way. Yucky.

Screamed at a scary scene in a movie showhouse

Oh No Way. I try to avoid scary movies altogether, but even so I would gasp not scream. I did scream at a haunted house thing where I had to put my hand into a dying man’s guts to pull out a clue so we could leave the room. I actually couldn’t do it and my doctor friend had to. 😱😂

Been involved in a hit and run

Oh So Way. Twice. The first time was on the Pacific Coast Highway in Newport Beach on my way to work. A woman in a red VW bumped me and acted like she’d pull over but then took off. The second time some total ahole hit me around midnight on the 55 in Tustin, and I chased him for a while but lost him. 😡😡😡

Been locked outside when naked

Oh No Way. What? Lol

Been approached by a hooker

Oh No Way. Not unless you count the con men on dating sites.

Re – gifted a gift to someone else that l was gifted

Oh So Way. I’m sure I must have done this.

Fallen over something in the street whilst texting

Oh So Way. Not while texting, but just while being a general dorkasaurus.

Fallen asleep on the toilet

Oh No Way.

Had sex in a tent

Oh No Way. I don’t think I’ve ever even been in a tent!

Properly kissed someone of the same sex

Oh No Way. Nor improperly.

Surfed

Oh No Way. Athletic endeavors and I are not a good match, especially if they involve balancing.

Had sex on the first date

Oh So Way. I don’t recommend this. I understand that some people end up in LTRs after beginning with casual type events, but in my experience I have not found it possible to turn something shallow and superficial into something serious and meaningful. Of course, if all you want is the casual thing, then go for it.

Holidayed in a nudist camp

Oh No Way. Nothing against them if that’s your thing, but I’m already freezing to death 24/7.

The Mysterious New Math

A bouquet 💐 of thanks to Rory for giving me a Liebster award! I don’t keep track of these things, so idk if this is my first Lieb, or what.

Can we talk about the directions for a minute? (I’m adding periods because these are sentences.)

“Acknowledge the blogger that gave it to you and display the award.”

Okay, that’s clear enough.

“Answer 11 questions that the blogger gave you.”

We’ll come back to this one.

“Give 8 random thoughts about yourself.”

Kaaay.

“Nominate 8 other bloggers and notify them of their nomination.”

Meh. But even if…

“Ask your nominees 8 questions.”

Now, hang on. Does anyone else see the problem here? How the heck are you supposed to answer the eleven questions the blogger gives you when here it tells you to give the next pile of peeps eight questions? Is this the new-new math? No wonder peeps can’t make change without computers.

*

My 8 Questions

If vampires can’t see their reflections, why is their hair always so neat?

– Obviously they have a stylist on payroll. I heard it’s the same one Mooch uses.

If a kid refuses to sleep during nap time, are they guilty of resisting a rest?

– I’d take that with a grain assault.

If they weren’t called grapes and you had the opportunity to rename them, what would you call them?

– Blumps

If the grass wasn’t green what colour would you make it?

– Purple

Has your imaginary friend ever had an imaginary friend, or just you?

– She cheated on me way back, just like in the movie Her, which is why I have a cat meow.

So, dance in the rain, wallow in the mud or naked angel in the snow?

– It’s a marvelous night for a raindance…

Can you describe your blog to me without using the letters i and e?

– A crazy salad

What are you afraid of becoming?

– Homeless

*

Okay. Here are 8 random thoughts about me, which will also segue into 8 questions, should anyone care to answer them here or elsewhere. If you’d like to grab the award to display and answer the questions on your own blog, consider yourself tagged. Again, 8 =/= 11, in my world.

1. I love math, though I’ve forgotten a lot. I think it would be fun to take it all again, starting from geometry (my favorite). Is there any subject from school you wish you could remember more of?

2. I would love to be able to afford to quit working and get a masters degree, or just take poetry and other classes for fun. What would you do if you didn’t have to work?

3. Travel is not high on my list of priorities. This makes me an outlier, since most people are always going on and on about traveling. It’s just so expensive and disruptive to my routines. Plus, I don’t like to leave my kitty. 🐱 What makes you an outlier?

4. I’m very aware of time slipping away now, and each day that passes is one less I will have to spend with family, finish my writing projects, read the books in my queue, etc. This is why I’ve pretty much stopped watching TV and going to movies. What unfinished projects are on your list?

5. I live in an area I can’t really afford, and if for whatever reason I am forced to move from the affordable place I have now, I don’t know what I will do. I think about this all the time and there is no good solution. What is your top fear at the moment?

6. I get super annoyed when restaurants don’t have hot tea, or even offer to nuke a cup of hot water for me in their microwave (then I can use my own tea bag, which I always have a supply of). Is this so unreasonably difficult? Not talking about fast food, but normal restaurants. What makes you crazy irritated at a restaurant?

7. I’m trying to be healthier this year, which for me means exercise, but it’s really hard to get motivated to exercise when I’m constantly cold and achy, even if I know logically that (eventually) the exercise will help me feel less cold and achy. Do you have any circular issues of this nature?

8. Once you’ve broken a bad habit, it’s easier to break others ~ this is true for me! I gave up afternoon candy breaks. Then dating sites. Then Facebook. Somewhere in there I gave up arguing with people online (long, long time ago I gave up trolling for reactions). More recently I’ve begun simply blocking people on any forum when they annoy me, rather than reading their posts and gloating to myself about what an ass they are. That’s just more wasted time, as is reading the jerks who comment on Fox News’ articles. Time is too precious and it’s running out. Describe your thoughts on time and/or bad habits.