Trying to relax – Lazy summer days

It is summer and I am trying to relax

I have some really cool blog posts coming up about things like: my capsule wardrobe, my ongoing no-complaint challenge, and the messed up consumer-focused economy we have built in the US. But right now, I am just lazy. It is summer and the PNW will not give us the normal high 70s-low 80s and gloriously sunny days of years past. Instead, we are careening between 90s and humid and low 70s and raining. I want to work on my next Toastmasters speech and my blog posts and turning my dissertation into articles. But that will all have to wait.

Since I am trying to relax, I will just tell you a little about me and my current life.

For the first time in 10 years, I had a family reunion with some (but not all) of my siblings and cousins.

I am the youngest of 9, and the family is far-flung, although all in the US. My oldest sister is very good about staying in contact with everyone and actually going to visit people, but the rest of us seem to rarely see each other.

I could be overstating that, but I know that I rarely see any of them. I live in the far corner of the country, not on any trade routes. People don’t pass through here much. And I have been so broke and busy that I haven’t been able to travel so much either. It is costly to fly with 5 people, and we have to drive an entire day just to get out of our region of the country. So it hasn’t happened much. We all went to my mom’s funeral a couple of years ago and began to talk about having a reunion.

This year we did it. Many of us congregated at a lake house and explored the area. It was nice. It was a whole big group of us, all trying to relax. There is talk of doing it again in 2 years.

Sweet relief

We bought a tiny air conditioner for our bedroom. I was on Facebook at 10 pm last Friday and one came up on the marketplace, and it was close and small enough to fit our window and newer and only $25. After I decided there is absolutely NOTHING scary or sketchy about going to a stranger’s house at 11:00 on a Friday night and purchasing an item advertised on social media, away we went.

I now have a cool room and no longer wake up with the feeling that I have a headache about to start. Based on this success, I will be seeking out an air purifier for the cooler months.

Food changes

The Dude has had super good luck going on a low FODMAP diet, and I have discovered it is super helpful to me as well, and so I am following it too. The big rocks to avoid: onions, garlic, gluten, lactose, apples, and honey. There are a lot of smaller ones and we have to avoid putting too many “OK” things into a single serving. For instance, having half a serving of something might be okay, but a full serving is too much. Avoiding onions, garlic, gluten, lactose, apples, and honey is not always fun. But having them is less fun.

A cookie we can eat. Thanks, gluten free bakery that is on our way home.

I am also moving a bit towards intermittent fasting. My current practice is to hold off on breakfast until 10 or 11 most days. I will drink coffee around 8, and then my breakfast is a bowl of Greek yogurt with splash of maple syrup, berries, and ground flaxseed.

Work-life balance struggle

I have a lot of *life* stuff I want to accomplish right now:

  • Repotting some plants
  • Propagating plants
  • Painting, assembling, and adding casters to our new recycling shelf
  • Turning my dissertation into some articles
  • Writing the aforementioned blog posts
  • Getting back on the preschool TV blog series
  • Finishing the decluttering and organizing
  • Leaving the house for dates
  • Hiking
  • Any kind of exercise at all
  • Working on my next Toastmasters speech
  • Reading books
  • Some tech learning (work related and blog related)
  • Meditating
  • Processing what I learned from our couples’ retreats
  • But first:
    • Spending time with The Dude to finish up the retreat exercises
    • Write about our couples’ retreat on this blog to let you know what it was all about

These are the things I want to accomplish. Well, some of the bigger rocks, anyway. However, I am really struggling to find the time, motivation, and energy to do so.

The Dude and I are currently commuting to work together. We drive 25 minutes to my work, he drops me off and then drives the other 25 to his work. In the afternoon, he drives about 45 minutes to my work, waits for about 30 minutes (more or less) and then we drive the 1 hour or more home. It is a very long day. We leave the house at 6 and return home between 6 and 7. I am on a 4-day week. The Dude works on Friday as well. So his week is even longer. Our down time is spent trying to relax.

The evenings go like this: Pet Dex. Scratch Dex. Eat dinner (grateful that the boys made it). Check social media. Walk Dex. Watch a Youtube video. Get ready for bed. Not a lot of time for other stuff.

Dex is also trying to relax-he usually succeeds! Close up of a chihuahua face.
This face will not be denied

Trying to fix it

I have built a Trello list and plan to start choosing one or two tasks per night. Just haven’t reached it yet. Making the list was a big step.

I do have 3 day weekends! Yay!! But they go by quickly and get taken up with errands and resting time. And petting Dex.

How can you not pet this little guy?

It seems that I am still not healed from the burnout of the years of dissertation writing, followed by the trauma and fear of last year’s husband sickness, surgery, and recovery times. I need some way to reset the programming, to light a fire under me, but I just don’t know how yet. I guess that is the next thing to work on. For each of the activities listed above, I know the “What?” and the “Why?” Now I need to work on the “How?”