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Friday, December 29th, 2017
9:45 pm - 2017 in review

• Played around in the dirt with an excavator

• Tried sensory deprivation tanks

• Rebuilt fermenters at Cleophus Quealy brewery

• Watched the new Twin Peaks

• Our kayak nearly got toppled by a whale and her baby

• Got retweeted by @georgehtakei

• Many nights in the hot tub with a dram of something delicious

• Survived an FDA inspection

• Ran around drunk in bridal dresses

• Only set the pinball table on fire once

• Quit my job, and became a consultant and went back to school full-time

• Learned how to make chocolate from scratch (starting with roasting the raw beans)

• My cactus shot up a 30-foot stalk and then died

• Played with adorable home robots

• Took Mum to see Book of Mormon

• Found three-armed Pucci shirts

• Harvested fresh hops and promptly brewed beer with them

• Saw an eclipse

• That bottle of Bruichladdich Fies Ile we shared in the middle of the Jura Paps with our backs to the horizontal wind and rain

• Accidentally giving Mike McCready from Pearl Jam my friend’s joke

• Drank a lot of beer

• Ed from Barenaked Ladies sang me happy birthday

• Rode in a stunt plane and did all the flips and barrel rolls

• Wrestled in Jello

• Learned a bit about real cameras

• Changed my middle name

• Dressed up the lawn dinosaur

• Learned 3D printing and laser etching

• Hung out with my statistically significant others

• Bought an Apple Watch

• Went rock climbing in Joshua Tree

• Rode a mechanical bull

• Learned a crap-ton about electronics

• Did a real pull-up

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Sunday, July 17th, 2016
9:25 am - I like it when you nice people post here, maybe I should do the same
Gunna turn on the friends only thing and let 'er rip.

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Saturday, August 8th, 2015
5:35 pm - Current mood: Plain baked potato with salt
Fertility battle is still not going well. I'm currently in the Quantum Period following my third IUI. I had a horrific reaction to all the fertility drugs this time around and found myself for about two weeks in a haze of anger and depression. I'm sick of it.

The best way I can think to describe it: so we drive up to a froofy burger joint up in Marin. As I'm looking over the menu, I realize that every item on there may as well be "Plain Baked Potato with Salt". It didn't matter what I picked, it was all meh, and not even worth bothering with a choice. That's apparently what depression feels like to me: plain baked potato with salt.

Hubby wants to try IVF, but I don't know if I can handle it mentally/physically. I'd be satisfied at this point to give up this whole thing, but that might be a decision for after vacations.

A high school friend I haven't talked to in 20 years found me on linkedin, said hey, you're close by, we should get drinks, only to discover we live in the same city, you know, 2000 mi from where we grew up. And it's been like our friendship picked up right where it left off. Completely amazing!

In the meantime, I have decided that it really and truly is time for me to finish my bachelor's degree so the lack of credentials stops being the thing that can hold me back from promotions. Except I want the classes to start NOW RIGHT NOW. Gotta keep the motivation high for at least another 2 years!

It also cracks me up that I'm presenting the keynote "Chemistry of Beer" to the International Society of Pharmacological Engineers. And I don't have a degree.


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Sunday, April 5th, 2015
12:24 pm - The waxing of the calendar month
It is go time.

I am finding myself at the Stanford Fertility Clinic more and more frequently now. Appointments can be scheduled with dramatic urgency and with no fucks given to anything else resembling plans. I told my Very-German-Boss that I was going through some “medical stuff” which might require me to disappear from the office with little notice; he merely nodded and told me to take care of myself and try not to stress out.

I am trying very hard not to stress out.

I have been spending a lot of time at home, reading or tinkering with hobbies. I am not pushing myself in the gym anymore to achieve N+1 since last time. The cat has been rediscovering my lap in the same way I’m rediscovering Netflix.

I am letting go of grudges. I am not scolding other departments for not doing their part. I am declining meeting invites that I don’t want to attend. I am shrugging more and emailing from home less. I am taking daily walks at the lunch hour with my more patient coworkers.

I am booking a massage to try and counteract the doubled-dose of hormones I have been prescribed.

I am, honestly, very grateful for the attitude of the Stanford doctors: there are no good luck charms, no strange diets, no rituals, nothing that isn’t grounded by a scientific paper or six. In fact, my doctor removed one medication because of something she had seen disproved just last week. Compare this to the Tribal Knowledge of Internet Forums and even my brief flirtation with Acupuncture where I always feel like I’m not doing enough and whenever things go wrong it has been my own fault.

But the flip side of it is that right now there’s nothing much for me to do. All I can do is take my hormones and try not to stress out.

I am trying very hard not to stress out.

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Thursday, January 1st, 2015
10:47 pm - Goals and Resolutions
Me? I love resolutions. I love stupid long term goals, even if it something like "laugh at the kitties every day" or "fix my credit". I don't beat myself up if I don't make it, and Jan 1st is just convenient as a time to reset everything.

For 2014:
- Worship the awesome women in my life
I had all the best intentions with this, and then my derby wife basically “dumped” me. There were weeks without contact and then suddenly a barrage of emails with things that just didn’t make any sense to me about what was going on. The more I asked for honesty, the stranger the relationship became. So I finally walked away from it, and we haven’t talked since. I can’t believe that a friendship that seemed that close was suddenly ripped away from me like a bad breakup, but I didn’t have the energy after that to go make friends again.

I feel like my mom and I are drifting farther apart these days too. I know she wants me to have a baby more than anything, and since I can’t, there’s not much to talk about these days as our lives are so different now.

- Read more amazing page-turning fiction
Success! I made it through the MaddAddam trilogy, the Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet, Special Topics in Calamity Physics, and The 100-Year-Old Man Who Climbed out the Window and Disappeared. I still do read a hell of a lot of non-fiction tho wow.

- Savor and be grateful
I definitely savor. I have no hesitation to see the world I live in as a very sensuous place. I eat amazing food, indulge in crazy good beer and whiskey, put the top down on the car and blast great music as I smell the air around me. I love taking walking mediations, and I adore how my body responds to exercise.

Being purposefully grateful was an interesting challenge tho. I tried in November to list something every day, and I got caught up with getting stuck because I wanted it to be RIGHT, to be MEANINGFUL enough. I wanted to save the GOOD ONES for later. Coincidentally, I also was having a very frustrating month on the trying-to-get-preggers front, so that was probably the absolute worst timing to think about how good I really had it. I almost made it through the month ,but abandoned rather than continue my four-days of reluctant catchup at a time. So: needs work.

- Work with my body instead of getting angry at it
Success! I am learning to recognize what could trigger this anger and am learning to avoid and counteract it. I’m feeling much better about what I can do, and this makes me feel strong and able. I treat this body well instead of punishing it. There has been a lot of work on deep-down values and goals that helps, a lot of navel-gazing to interpret, but I think I’m nearly there on The Big Stuff.

- Opt for experiences over material things
Success! Topher now gets me reservations and tickets as my main gifts (Cirque du Soleil! Two nights in the Human Nest!) and my dad and i now trade Groupons, food, and gift certificates for experiences. My mom had an interesting interpretation of “renewable gifts” and got me a bunch of solar-powered stuff, heh.

It’s been interesting tho, since I’ve been doing all this experimentation on my hormones: I can tell when my profile is completely out of whack, because all I want to do is shop. When the trial-and-error with has gone poorly, I end up with two pairs of new shoes and 10 boxes from Amazon show up on the doorstep.

- And -- what the hell -- nail that 200lb deadlift
Success, in fact, due to the pre-coffee mental math, I accidentally lifted 225lb.

So one day in the gym it was really hot, I was deadlifting 190, and since I had no chalk or straps, I started to feel one hand start to slip from the bar. The smart thing would have been to just let go and take the scolding about dropping the weights. Instead, my instinct let me “catch” that side, and that was just enough to tweak the right side of my back for almost a month. Let that be a lesson to you kids. Anyway, it really made me think about outcome goals (i.e., lift a certain number) vs. process goals (get to the gym and lift three days a week), something I’m still chewing on.

Continuing with the theme that it's useless for me to set resolutions like "Drop 20 pounds", here's what's on the plate for 2015:
- Feel as good as I look
- Look as good as I feel
- Focus on producing rather than consuming
- Be the kind of person who has an advanced degree
- Don't start a thing unless I'm willing to see it through

And I think the theme song for my year shall be Fluke’s “Atom Bomb”

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Wednesday, December 31st, 2014
10:08 pm - 2014 in review
- Toured IDEO’s workshops
- Attended a SF Bulls Hockey game
- Went for a joy ride in a glider
- Attended a TEDx
- Gave a talk to artists about Dug
- Saw Leon Panetta
- Drank a bunch of Pliny the Younger
- Accidentally deadlifted 225lb
- Rode some bikes
- Brewed some beer
- Scored the World’s Best Bed
- Found out my right tibia is almost 3mm longer than the left
- Got into a pirate ship battle
- Rode motorbikes (barely)
- Hung out with C-ko
- Sipped a whole lot of whiskey
- Slept in a human nest
- Went to Colorado, saw dinosaur tracks, toured Coors
- Got my sleeve tattoo
- Crashed two charity galas in a gold sequin dress
- Played Metallica pinball with Barenaked Ladies
- Watched the cat have a seizure
- Trained the FDA
- Watched some World Cup
- Lost the hearing in my left ear
- Fell in love with a pinball table I couldn’t have
- Switched to all-grain brewing
- Tried aerial silks
- Drank our way through San Diego
- Climbed Half Dome in a Strawberry Shortcake dress
- Played on a slack line and ate cheesecurds in Wisconsin
- Conquered Chicago tourism
- Turned 38 at Cougar Night
- Build a deck for the new hot tub
- Got my first Agent Provacateur outfit
- Got to see Randall Munroe talk about lassoing a NASA robot
- Cataloged yeast and bacteria at beer school
- Tried fighting with German longsword
- Got two cats a home who had been bugging me at work
- Discovered Evernote
- Visited the NASA centrifuge where my mom was tested
- Tried getting acupuncture (meh.)
- Dressed Dug up like a dragon
- Found real kringle in California
- Enjoyed KURIOS by Cirque du Soleil from the second row
- Got to see John Oliver and John Cleese live
- Hosted my mom and step-father over Thanksgiving
- Sold a bunch of Dug T-shirts
- Saw Stevie Wonder live (omg!)
- Got a unicycle for Christmas

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Saturday, December 20th, 2014
10:02 am
In a half-assed attempt to simplify my life, I have been reading lots of French style blogs and people obsessed with French style and their repeated use of je ne sais quoi to explain everything. Somewhere in there, I decided I needed a signature scent.

Which is weird, because I sort of have a signature scent already, and that was the old Victoria's Secret Vanilla Lace body spray. When it disappeared from the stores, I relied on eBay. Maybe it was stashed in drawers, garages, whatever, I didn't care, I'd still take it off their dusty hands. It was cool when people could associate me with my scent, but it wasn't so strong that it was like a police siren announcing my presence in a room.

But at some point recently, I decided maybe I didn't want to smell like a 15-year-old teen wearing a 15-year-old liquid anymore. The hunt was on.

There were department stores, and I don't know how those saleswomen could deal with that job. Even announcing that I was looking for my signature scent (because, you know, customer for life) and stating my preferences (heavy on the vanilla, for daytime use so easy on the musk, and not yet old enough for Chanel No 5), it was still a bombardment rather than a curated approach. I left smelling like *that* woman in the office (you know the one).

There were checking online reviews, making lists, cross-referencing. There started to be the problem of discovering that there were multiple versions of one perfume that were hyped for a year and then were lost forever. I tried to exclude those, but it's hard to predict which ones were "classics" and what I'd be hunting for on eBay again when I'm in my 60s. I was trying not to be swayed by awesome bottle designs and names (Um, hello, Alien by Thierry Mugler). I also didn't really want anything that could be purchased at a drug store or "designed" by a pop singer.

I narrowed it down and ordered those little sampler tubes. I remember as a kid in the 80s having dozens of those things, each barely secured by a tiny plastic hook in a gatefold card that had the actual artwork and description of the Real Thing You Should Buy. The nostalgia was overwhelming when I got my new stash. And even though my list of things to try was very specific, of course, I got a ton of other random samples, with more musk and rose than you can shake a hair curler at.

Several samples were vetoed on first smell. Some won the honor of getting spritzed on before work. Eventually I got to "March Madness" style of wearing a different scent on each wrist and deciding at the end of the day which winner progressed to the next bracket.

I was down to the last two: Candy by Prada and Pour Femme by Dolce and Gabbana.

And yesterday morning, while dressing after an intense deadlifting session, I couldn't find my little tube for the day. I tore everything out of my gym bag, tapped shoes to be sure they were empty, swept my locker multiples times (just to be sure), but alas, all I had was the card and a broken heart.

I had my answer for which bottle I had to buy.

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Sunday, November 16th, 2014
9:07 am - After another year, I can firmly state:
Infertility is an asshole.

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Tuesday, September 2nd, 2014
9:08 pm - Chicago
When traveling around holiday weekends, it usually makes the airfare wickedly cheaper to stay an extra day or so. Now that my mom has moved out of Wisconsin, it was the first time I felt no guilt spending that extra day back in downtown Chicago instead of with family.

I was fascinated by Chicago throughout my few college years, and even quit school to pursue my goals of combining the music industry with the budding web industry. I did pretty well with said goal, even considering I barely made enough money to live on.

I think I spent just under two years actually living and working in Chicago before moving out to San Francisco. So by that math, I've been on the west coast 7 times longer than my residence in the Windy City.

So why did I feel so many ghosts when I was back there for a mere 24 hours? How could I still remember the street names and buildings of those I had dated, point out the grocery stores where I did the most mundane of errands, still keep the L Map in my head like a tattoo? Oh sure, plenty had changed without me: the new Millennium park was amazing with its reflective bean, hipster bars abounded and men with luscious beards tended them, the corn cob buildings were gone, etc. But the ghosts still raised all the hair on my arms when a set of glass doors slid open at the Field Museum and I was transported back to a drunken curiosity when they did the same at 3am.

("We swear," we slurred to the security guard. "We did not think that was going to happen, we just wanted to put our noses on the glass and look at the T-Rex.")

I am glad to have had Topher with me, whose naturally adventurous mindset took me to some new neighborhoods and restaurants, places with no history for me, so that my brain didn't get stuck in the skipping "what ifs" and "what ever happened tos". But even with the size of that city, it was inevitable I'd end up on a recognizable sidewalk, mentally flooded, and dumb.

Maybe I can't ever move back. I'm scared I'd get stuck as my young adult self, hungry for experiences, desperate for respect, always feeling like I was fighting something. Whereas now, home, there is a sense of enlightenment in my being, that I can grow and be content at the same time.

And hey, besides, the weather is better here.

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Sunday, July 6th, 2014
10:05 am
Something is wrong with me. All I want to do right now is shop.

Normally, I'm a minimalist kinda person. I mean, sure, most of my stuff is big and loud, but I usually only have ONE of those particular things. This was a big change from my upbringing: my mom loved the thrill of the sales rack, online ordering and ebay, catalogs of all sorts. For instance, she would develop intricate storage systems: this box has all the red and pink lipsticks, this box for oranges and corals, this box for browns and neutrals.

Me? I have two lipsticks. When one runs out, I replace it with the exact same thing. And they're both out of production, so you'd better believe that it's getting harder as time goes on, yet I still manage. (This place and ebay are amazeballs.)

I've even taken to trying the Project333 approach to my closet, with some success.

But right now, OMG, I want mini skirts and shoes and fun yoga mats and more bikinis and hoodies and crazy strappy shirts and fuckoff Kentucky Derby hats and haaaaaaalp.

Please take my credit card away until I figure out what void I'm trying to fill, here.

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Sunday, June 15th, 2014
1:14 pm - I'm still learning but...
Most of it would not be very exciting to others, I'm afraid. I'm supposed to be giving a training to a bunch of new folks from the FDA, and I'm being grilled by my handlers on just how much I know, on the chance it turns from a "training" into an "inspection". And now I know that there are a bunch of little details I'm being scolded for not being able to answer, because, well, no one ever told me. But hey, now I know?

On a more positive note: one of the girls who works for me, in a slightly inebriated state during an off-site, gave me one of the best compliments I've ever received in my life. This is a clue that perhaps it's time to stop second-guessing my managerial skills.

I am working on my sleeve tattoo, finally. Two sessions so far, probably at least two more to go. SUUUUPER pleased so far, and it helps to have the most amazing tat artist, worth every penny! It's actually making me feel more comfortable in my skin, like these bits of art had actually been missing before. Will definitely post pictures once I'm past the final adolescent itch-n-flake stage.

Oh, and the cat seems to be better after her seizure, a middle of the night sort of panic situation. We're thinking she managed to lick off some of her Frontline from a recent application, as that's the only thing that was different about her life. But in our sleep deprived freaked out state, I remember saying to Topher: This is what being a parent is like, I suppose. Powerless, wanting to trade spots to take the pain away, guilt despite trying to do the right thing, willing to throw any amount of cash at the experts to make sure everything's OK and it will never happen again. Such is the price of love; the feeling that it could still be so fragile.

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Wednesday, May 14th, 2014
9:26 pm - TIL
Especially on a bicycle, but true of other tire-d things turn...

I knew that you shouldn't hit your brakes in a turn, because you either have traction to brake or to grip the road, but not necessarily both at the same time.

What I didn't know before today is that this is called the "Traction Circle":

Speaking of cycling, gorgeous bike ride into work today, even found a little dirt shortcut that shaves about a mile off the usual route. Unfortunately, I will never ever get used to the headwind on the way home. Just. No.

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Tuesday, May 13th, 2014
10:02 pm - Well, hello again Livejournal
I have decided that I am going to start using this thing more often, because yay longform!

And I am going to try to do that by trying to post something that I've learned every day, because that's something I enjoy and I figure it would be good/mildly interesting to have a solid track record of what those things were.

Today, I learned that Richard Feynman, of awesome physics fame, had a van that he painted his rather spiffy diagrams onto the side of it.

I currently find this with good timing, because I'm scoping out what I want for my sleeve tattoo, and I have decided that it's going to be math and science based, and well this fits right in. I have the Pinterest (of course) going with all sorts of diagrams, equations, molecules, and logos that have a special place in my heart. And frankly, I'm a little scared that I'm going to forget something really important, so three years from now I'll smack my head and go DAMN I FORGOT THE SPHERICAL COW and then have no where to put it.

So bring me all your spiffy science art. Huuuuurry.

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Sunday, February 16th, 2014
10:28 am - Better living through body chemistry and knowing thyself
Despite all the trauma that kicked off my year, I am happy to announce that I am now feeling beyond awesome. Seriously. As in, I haven't felt this good since I was in my 20s.

Step 1: Genesolve. The company that my husband is now working at offered me a chance to try it out since I have some background in science or something. Here's how it went: they took my blood and ran a million tests on it and I got a 5 page report back. Then, based on my ultimate goals, I was prescribed a bunch of stuff from extra vitamins to supplements to even HCG (the last of which I honestly didn't care for even if money was no object). Then three months later, more bloodwork to see how everything went, then tweaking the meds and repeat.

Now, I've always considered myself a pretty darn healthy person, what with the dropping a bunch of weight last year, lots of bike riding, knew what a deadlift was, and generally good habits. But when you find out stuff like, oh, I had so little testosterone in my body that it was unmeasurable and did you know women are supposed to have SOME testosterone, especially if you're trying to get pregnant? So one of the tools in my new kit was testosterone gel, which made most of my male friends completely jealous.

And lo, I found my sex drive. I didn't even really register that it was missing until I had this rush of hypersexualized thoughts ALL DAY (how do you guys even deal with this?) So we've been tapering the gel back as my body seems to now register how to make its own.

But, that's just one example. I'm also feeling mentally sharp and on my game ALL DAY including the mid afternoons, my moods are generally sunny and low-stress, I'm sleeping hard and wake up feeling rested, and my bloodwork numbers are trending in the right direction. I'm happy to get on a bike again, and I'm rocking it on the weightlifting (should hit my unassisted pull-up goal in about two weeks if all goes well). So, yeah, this shit works.

Step 2: One by one nutrition consulting. This seems to be a logical next-step after my Precision Nutrition Lean Eating success. It's all still habit-based, but it's extremely customized, so these guys work with stay-at-home moms to Olympic athletes. Still no meal plans, no shakes, no calorie counting, just working on one good idea at a time and seeing how it goes. I feel like I've become that person who can eat whatever they want and still look good, it's just that "whatever I want" is no longer gorging on ice cream and peanut butter cups. I no longer crave the free bagels at work, although I'll have a doughnut like once a week and really effing *enjoy* the hell out of it. My goals are no longer weight loss, but rather a 200lb deadlift. To see how many veggies I can eat in a day, and to still be able to drink the beer I brew. There's an online community that's super cool, too, and I feel like I'm not out fighting the world alone.

So, tl;dr: feeling good. I wish everyone could feel like this, I think it would make the world a better place.

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Tuesday, December 31st, 2013
8:24 am - Goals and Resolutions
Me? I love resolutions. I love stupid long term goals, even if it something like "laugh at the kitties every day" or "fix my credit". I don't beat myself up if I don't make it, and Jan 1st is just convenient as a time to reset everything.

For 2013:
- Have at least 20 adventures and 20 dinner parties
Success! Originally, I was keeping track of exactly who and where we were for all of these, but they started increasing in frequency to the point where it was a blur of awesome. Our new dining room is great for having a few couples over, and we love to cook and share. Adventures ranged from small (quick weekend trip for wine tasting) to epic (a gastronomical religious experience in Spain), and I'm actually surprised we did that many given how often my husband was out of town for work. I certainly didn't lack for adventures on my own (sometimes my goal was to make him jealous that he was halfway around the world and not at home), but it's way more fun to share the experience.

- Save up all the $5 bills that I get, eventually (not this year) buy that trip into space
Kinda switched to single $1 bills, mostly to keep myself away from the vending machine at work! I now don't have that kind of issue with food anymore, so I should find another trigger to get back on this.

- Get the beer lab up and running
Heh, hard to answer this. I bought a bunch of analytical equipment and fun science toys but keep forgetting to use it all, as it takes way more planning and advance work than just "Hey, let's make beer today!" However, I did finally blow some cash on a modified cooler to be my mash tun, so I can finally graduate to all-grain brewing (instead of half-extracts). The first attempt is conditioning in bottles. Eee!

- Continue to have fun being active: crossfit, derby, cycling, and whatever else tickles my fancy
Success, despite injuries and numerous setbacks! Quitting derby (twice) was annoying, but my right leg was making every practice super painful and frustrating. Then, well, getting pregnant didn't help. I eventually found out what was going on with my knee and hip (bursitis from an old mountain bike accident plus years of muscle imbalances), got all that repaired, rediscovered rock climbing and powerlifting. Finishing my project with Precision Nutrition helped, too, as they were able to suggest alternative exercises and strategies for staying active despite all the crap. In the end, I was able to get some great photos of myself (with abs!) a mere two weeks after my surgery. So I feel like I'm done with all resolutions to "lose weight" or whatever, which is flipping rad. I highly recommend it.

- Make a baby
Meh. So frustrated right now. But not giving up yet, even though it makes the year *really* hard to plan.

- Do badass shit. Keep it real. Have fun.
Success, for sure.

Continuing with the theme that it's useless for me to set resolutions like "Drop 20 pounds", here's what's on the plate for 2014:

- Worship the awesome women in my life
- Read more amazing page-turning fiction
- Savor and be grateful
- Work with my body instead of getting angry at it
- Opt for experiences over material things
- And -- what the hell -- nail that 200lb deadlift

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7:33 am - 2013 in review
- Commissioned a large painting
- Our lawn dinosaur became internet-famous
- Gave up roller derby (again)
- Started trying to fix my knee issues
- Landscaped the entire front yard with succulents and edibles
- Went to Utah, started thinking about a sleeve tattoo
- Began using a standing desk at work
- Bought some sassy pink roller-skates (still mostly unused)
- Drove the 14-passenger broom wagon
- Got my first MRI
- Topher's parents redecorated our bathroom awesomely
- Roger Ebert died
- Kayaked in Monterey with sea lions and otters
- Husband built me the world's sexiest single speed cross bike
- Had a miscarriage
- Visited Portland, ate very well
- Had a partial bursectomy surgery
- Saw LL Cool J, Ice Cube, Public Enemy and De La Soul
- Lost my most sparkly friend in a car accident
- Visited Toronto for a weekend to meet my team, then got stuck in the airport for 24 hours
- Went to a week long Brewing Science course at UC Davis
- Camped out with a bunch of cyclists in the California Sierras
- Finished a year long project fixing my relationship with food
- And got some photos of myself in a bikini to prove it
- Bought a motorcycle (still unused)
- Saw Deltron 3030
- Took my derby wife to meet Barenaked Ladies
- Did my first backcountry camping trip in Tahoe
- Celebrated our 2nd anniversary
- Attempted aerial yoga, almost puked
- Binged on Iberico jamon in Spain
- Saw awesome friends get married
- Grew and ate a ton of padron peppers
- Hurt my leg again, quit roller derby again
- Saw a lecture at NASA on time travel
- Got a folding bicycle and lots of flat tires
- Made my annual pilgrimage to Wisconsin
- Rode a record number of roller coasters at an empty theme park
- Started a new job at work
- Went sailing and nearly got rammed by a whale
- Obtained my Six Sigma Green Belt
- Took dad wine tasting
- Watched Richard Dawkins being interviewed
- Tried to get back into rock climbing
- Dressed up as the Avengers and handed out bacon to kids
- Hubby changed jobs and is no longer gone half the year
- Saw Radiolab live (they had huge dinosaurs on stage)
- Did my first all-grain brew
- Visited Hawaii for a few days
- Read lots and lots of books
- Dug the T-Rex's costumes got way more elaborate
- Went to Canada, ate poutine and hung out with family
- Had my second miscarriage, from what started as twins. Completely heartbroken.

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Tuesday, January 1st, 2013
12:03 pm - Goals and Resolutions.

Friend of Dug's!
Originally uploaded by gnat23
Me? I love resolutions. I love stupid long term goals, even if it something like "laugh at the kitties every day" or "fix my credit". I don't beat myself up if I don't make it, and Jan 1st is just convenient as a time to reset everything.

For 2012:

- Do 30-day challenges throughout the year. January's is no booze, February is a shopping diet, etc.
This lasted a little while: January I did Whole-30 Paleo and no booze, and it ended up being one of the craziest social months I've had ever. I succeeded, but it was very difficult. (Ask me about turning down body shots from fabulous drag queens.) February was my now-traditional "don't buy frivolous things" month, which was successful. By March, I realized these challenges were all about giving things up that I enjoyed, which made it no longer fun. I admit, it fizzled out.

- Figure out how to increase my energy levels (eat the rainbow? yoga? sleep cycles?)
Success, for the most part! Turns out the single most important factor is getting 9+ hours of sleep in a night. All the other ideas had benefits in other areas of my life, but getting to bed early was the clear winner. Now to figure out how to convince my brain to stick with that more often, especially when skate practice always seems to go so darn late.

- Keep my home spiffy, tidy, and welcoming enough to feel like a B&B
Somewhat success. I am still a tornado of piles of papers, but hiring a housecleaner to come in twice a month at least made things look really nice half the time. I am due a good spring cleaning to get rid of things and pare down my possessions. Clothing swap, anyone?

- Use my muses to help guide my inspirations and attitudes (Currently: Tank Girl)
Tank Girl was fun, but she's a little more crude and unbuttoned than I am always comfortable with, especially at work. For Christmas, Topher got me a style consultant, and he warned them about the hair, etc, so I'm kind of excited this coming year to really nail down my OWN look, then I can stop looking to fictional comic book characters.

- Love what I do: work, hobbies, exercise, etc. If I'm not loving it, look at doing something else.
Success! I quit my job of nine years and am loving the new one. I quit the derby league when I realized the practices were leaving me in tears and I wasn't feeling safe; instead, I'm in another beginner's bootcamp style thing which is letting me really nail down my basics and I feel way better. I am feeling much more powerful with my own desires and no longer feel the need to martyr myself.

- Continue to be good to my man, never take him for granted
Much success! We still very much work well together, he is my best friend, my punchline, my hero. My life is far more fun and inspired with him by my side, so I continue to try surprising him and being the best companion possible. Officially, we're trying to start a family, so may the next year have even more surprises!

Continuing with the theme that it's useless for me to set resolutions like "Drop 20 pounds", here's what's on the plate for 2013:

- Have at least 20 adventures and 20 dinner parties
- Save up all the $5 bills that I get, eventually (not this year) buy that trip into space
- Get the beer lab up and running
- Continue to have fun being active: crossfit, derby, cycling, and whatever else tickles my fancy
- Make a baby
- Do badass shit. Keep it real. Have fun.

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10:38 am - 2012 in review
- Wiped out on my bike, cracked my helmet
- Had to turn down body shots from drag queens
- Went to Sundance, did a ton of skiing, saw one movie
- Appeared dressed as a showgirl on a bike in a German cycling magazine
- Shook hands with Eddie Izzard
- Took the husband on a hot air balloon ride
- Gave a telegram as a valentine's gift
- Drove two hours to obtain my pour of Pliny the Younger beer
- Ate frogs legs. Didn't care for them
- Found another hummingbird nest in our yard
- Finished the new dining room extension
- I won a customer service award at work
- Learned how to spelunk inside a 2-story stainless steel tank
- My maternal grandmother passed away
- Dressed our lawn dinosaur up like an Easter Bunny
- Quit the job I had for 9 years
- Adopted a kitten. Gave away a kitten
- Drunken tandem bike ride with my team director
- Took Amtrak up to Portland and biked 700mi home in the rain
- Experienced an earthquake while sleeping in a tent
- A kids band used our dinosaur for their album cover
- Started a new job
- MCA passed away
- Learned how to keep bees, and kept some for a while
- Participated in a beer crawl scavenger hunt, ended up crashing Rogue instead
- Went to a roller derby game, became obsessed
- Met the guy who lost the iPhone4 prototype at the bar. At that bar.
- Rode my bike up some of the Death Ride mountains with fabulous ladies
- Saw Linkin Park live. No reason
- Went to X Games (spectator, not participant)
- Celebrated our first anniversary with ice cream sammiches and floating downstream
- Saw Itchy O and Extra Action Marching Band in a tiny sweaty club
- Saw Ozomatli in the redwoods
- Developed a crush on the mohawk guy in NASA
- Bought the worlds most awesome boots
- Watched meteors while drinking hot cocoa
- Saw Red Hot Chili Peppers, got within a foot of Flea
- Made really a lot of beer
- Visted my childhood home one last time before my parents moved out
- Turned 36 in the woods of Wisconsin
- Rode bikes with Dave Matthews band
- Saw Gotye live, didn't drool too much
- Caught (and ate) a huge salmon
- Became a derby girl
- Raced singlespeed cx bikes all over the place
- Drank a lot of really good whiskey
- Won the afterparty
- Dressed up like a dinosaur for Halloween
- Nearly got into a car accident with a police car
- Got a new tattoo (SSCXWC logo!)
- Twinkies went away
- Saw the Endeavour space shuttle. Nearly cried
- Dressed like a salmon and did an entire race backwards and with tequila shots
- Had a crazy ear infection that made me all dizzy for a day
- World did not end (yay!)
- Went to Canada, had a great time with the in-laws sitting in hot tubs
- Celebrated the end of the year in a gold sequin gown with hamachi grilled meats and fabulous company

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Friday, November 23rd, 2012
7:16 pm - Mental birthday!
I am feeling so crazy inspired and healthy and full-of-life right now that I'm scared I'm going to become one of those people who wears a headset microphone on stage while bouncing around in front of thousands of desperate folks shouting "And YOU CAN, TOO!"

I am trying to be careful to not overdo it, not to make too many detailed schedules, not to count un-hatched chickens, because that's what I do. Maybe it isn't so bad, as that sort of behavior has gotten me here, at least. It feels like a headfull of new year's resolutions without the prior binge drinking.

My second instinct is to tell everyone how great it is, and how they should do the same things and get to where I am. Like someone who discovered inbox-0 or the ease of peeling a banana from the bottom end and now can't shut up about it.

"How did I manage to survive before this?" Is this what it feels like to be a born-again? In recovery? Crying Eureka! from a batchtub?

This is pretty cool. I don't want to scare it off. I don't want to treat it like it's not going to be here in three months, so I don't want to use the word IF. IF this sticks, I'll tell you all about it. WHEN it's stuck for good. Yes, like the motivational posters. Do or do not, there is no try. Confidence. This is the new baseline.

Let's go!

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Sunday, November 4th, 2012
Hi there!

Lesse, since I last chatted at ya, I've tried out for, successfully gotten into, and then quit a roller derby league.

OK, not entirely true. It's true I joined and then quit the league, but I haven't quit skating. Let's just admit that things went a little too fast (I've only been skating since, what, July?) and I was on a quick path to getting seriously hurt. I'm now hanging out with a bunch of lovely ladies just practicing on the basics before getting back into full-contact. They now know me as "Super Gnatural."

I'm doing Crossfit about three times a week and love it. I'm eating well, listening to AC/DC, cruising around in the Mini Cooper with the top down, getting on the bicycle whenever possible.

I got a tattoo of the 2011 SSCXWC logo: a dinosaur carrying a bike. It is awesome and I feel like a real world champion now!

Brewing lots of yummy beers, dreaming of traveling, kicking ass at work. I'm finally feeling like I have a ton of energy, am strong and healthy, clever and dependable.

That's the quick summary; how are you?

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