General Question

Jeruba's avatar

Some progress is better than no progress. What's your milestone?

Asked by Jeruba (41919 points ) February 8th, 2009

Reference: this question.

Let’s come here, those who so choose, once a week to register our progress on the project of our choice. Words written, paintings finished, photos processed, goals met? Let’s share accomplishments and cheer one another on. (You can bookmark this page.)

First one in on a Sunday, post the date and time, please.

Observing members: 0 Composing members: 0

616 Answers

Jeruba's avatar

Sunday, Feb. 8, 2009, 1:55 a.m. PST.

Words written in the past 4 days: 6055.
Daily average: 1514.

marinelife's avatar

I want to congratulate you on your steady progress, which is impressive. Great start!

I don’t think I can join you, though, because this open venue does not seem like a safe enough place to share my progress on my projects, which are part of my gooey, soft center. No guidelines, frequent judgment by those with no skin in the game. Can’t do it.

Also, I had a bad flashback when I saw the date and time stamp. (Grin)

Introverted_Leo's avatar

Sweet progress!

Feb. 8th, 2009 @9:36am:

Working on my story in the past two or three days, I wrote about 2400 words, which is surprising to me considering how slow I work. In my “ideas” journal I wrote around 1600 words. But watch, I’ll probably go for a week with only writing like a couple of sentences. Depends on how busy it gets.

Bri_L's avatar

@Jeruba – Wow you have been busy! Nice job!
@Introverted_Leo – Jeepers, you sure jump started your project as well.

Feb. 8, 2009 12:48pm CST

I have begun to start learning Dreamweaver and relearning Flash so as to be more marketable and find a job. Also, I am restructuring my resume.

seekingwolf's avatar

I need to lose weight…this is especially important because I have PCOS and am insulin resistant (makes me gain weight).

I’ve lost 2.5 pounds in two weeks!! YAY!

I know that doesn’t sound like much, but it’s very difficult for insulin-resistant people to lose weight. I’ve eaten very well and went to the gym everyday.

It’s small but I’m happy. :)

Introverted_Leo's avatar

Oh gosh, I need to get a resume together. I want to do an internship this summer. :/ Scary but exciting at the same time.

And hooray for Seekingwolf! ^_^

Oh yeah, and I’m in Arizona time, which doesn’t have daylight savings. :P

wundayatta's avatar

I’m not doing anything, but I’ll keep you posted about how long I can keep that up. Really, I just wanted to get this thread in my queue, so I can see what happens. Good luck to all of you who can work!

Jeruba's avatar

Good work, everybody! Progress side by side, without comparison or competition, can be a great motivator. Let’s see if we can keep it up. Writing, weight loss, learning projects, secret ventures—all are welcome. @Marina, just tell us you’re carrying on with what you’re trying to do. @daloon, who doesn’t need a cheerleader? Thanks!

Sorry, I didn’t mean to give anybody nightmares with the mention of date. (That was before my time.) I just wanted to mark the start of a new week by time-stamping the first Sunday post. We could do it like this instead:

============================= 2/8/09 =============================

Would that be better?

Anyway, it’s okay to leave this off until somebody makes the first post next Sunday—then we need a new marker.

marinelife's avatar

@Jeruba Thanks for the encouragement.

I had a wonderful new book idea yesterday. I am letting it rattle around for 24 hours, but plan to start the notes and outline tomorrow. I’ll check in next Sunday with an update.

Bri_L's avatar

@seekingwolf – Keep it up! And don’t belittle the effort! Everything is different to different people! You go!!

augustlan's avatar

I put another layer of plaster on the wall I’m repairing. Only 20 more layers to go! Ok, maybe not 20, but it sure seems like it.

Dog's avatar

My apologies for being late to comment and congratulate on progress. I was out of town.

@Jeruba 6055— fantastic progress! Bravo!

@Introverted_Leo – 2400— terrific! I am eager to see how far you get by next check in!

@seekingwolf – a good cause to be certain. May you report progress next week!

@Marina- Perhaps by now you have put pen to paper (fingers to keyboard) and begun to let the idea grow. Look forward to the update.

@augustlan- I should be doing that too. Glad to see you have begun to tackle it.

@Bri_L- My apologies- missed your Dreamweaver/Flash goal- How is it going for you? A great challenge especially with flash.

Great thread everyone- encouraging and inspiring! By next week I should be able to report some completed work as I was delayed in travel prior.

Bri_L's avatar

Should I feel slighted here?

Introverted_Leo's avatar

No, I wish I knew how to make flash videos! That would be a useful skill to have. What’s Dreamweaver, though? I’ve never heard of that.

aprilsimnel's avatar

@Introverted_Leo – Short answer: it’s Adobe software for creating websites.

Bri_L's avatar

@ dog – I was just teasing you. Sorry about that.

I had written “it’s things like this that keep me naked and at home” but I had hi-lighted a spelling error to change it and I guess I deleted it. I nee to proof my post better.

cyndyh's avatar

I forgot to come back to this after seeing it on my way out the door the other day. I only ended up writing 4 out of 7 days this past week. As far as being consistent goes? Not so good yet. I’ll write more here next week with better news.

Introverted_Leo's avatar

Meh, I hate being the first…

============================= 2/15/09 =============================

I like that template, Jeruba.

Okay, my writing progress this week on my actual story was 5,177 words.

. . .

Knowing that I have to provide a word count by the end of the week seriously makes me write more. This is like a new record for me, lol. Sweet.

Bri_L's avatar

Good job! I don’t know how you all do that! I sure hope I get to read some of it.

I finished the first draft of my new resume.

seekingwolf's avatar

I lost 1 pound this week…again, ~1,500 calories a day plus going to gym 3x a week.

On a better note, I am feeling much better! The only carbs I eat now are brown rice and the occasional Cheerios. I can’t wait to get the metformin so I can lose more weight and not get all sweaty after having just a little rice…

Introverted_Leo's avatar

Kudos to Bri and SW! ^_^

augustlan's avatar

Sadly, no progress at all for me this week. I’ve been sick and in a lot of pain :(

Introverted_Leo's avatar

Oh, man! Well, rest up. I hope you feel better soon. : )

Dog's avatar

@Introverted_Leo High-5!
@seekingwolf Great progress! Kudos on the workouts!
@Bri L Great job on the draft

I met two painting deadlines and started another painting. Sold three paintings.

Bri_L's avatar

Yeay Seeking wolf

Auguslan – new goal, get better!!!

Dog! your out of control good! That isn’t just ordinary good.

Jeruba's avatar

What great reports! Thanks for starting, @Introverted_Leo, and you made fabulous strides. It’s working!

Resume progress for Bri_L, weight loss for seekingwolf—hurray, hurray! @Augustlan, so sorry, and I truly hope something perks you up real soon. @Dog! Three sales! Congratulations!

My end-of-week total is 6542, a gain of only 487. But some progress is better than no progress. The good news is that I’ve done something every day.

wundayatta's avatar

I have to say that I really admire all of you for making progress! Some day, maybe I’ll be able to emulate your fine example! Meanwhile, I think you’re doing great!

Dog's avatar

@Jeruba That is great progress considering the rocket-start. Keep it going!

Introverted_Leo's avatar

This is great news from everyone! Can’t wait to see what’s in store next week.

Bri_L's avatar

Yeay everyone!

@Jeruba – progress everyday is huge!

marinelife's avatar

I did get my outline done. I am still confident that the concept is viable. I fleshed it out a little more when I put it in writing.

My goal for this week is to determine which of four ideas I should work on first. I want to pick one and stick with it until I am finished.

Bri_L's avatar

@Marina Yes! Outlines are tricky little buggers!! GOOD for you!

Dog's avatar

@Marina Awesome- keep running with it!

marinelife's avatar

@Introverted_Leo great going!

@Jeruba The second week can sometimes be harder than the first. You had a lot pent up. Now you are soldiering on doing some every day. That is several hundred words you did not have before. Good work.

@Bri_L Excellent!

@seekingwolf Fantastic! It is even hardly to lose weight when you are insulin resistant.

@Augustlan I am so sorry you are not feeling well. Make sure you do not add beating yourself up to the mix. Your projects await. Your health is more important.

@Dog Meeting deadlines is very important and sometimes hard. Way to go!

Jeruba's avatar

Great cheerleading, @Marina. Thanks.

(I was also on vacation the first week and not the second.)

Introverted_Leo's avatar

@Marina: That’s big. Sitting down and actually finishing one of those things took me far too long, lol. I’m glad you had a better time of it.

augustlan's avatar

I am finally starting to feel better, half way through a 10 day cycle of antibiotics. Woo!

seekingwolf's avatar

Actually, on a side note today (about my weight), I ran into this girl at lunch. She can be really annoying b/c she’s really narrisistic. Anyway, while talking to me, she sort of stopped and said “you know, you look really good. have you been trying to lose weight?”

I was in shock. And she said “well your stomach looks flatter.”

I mean, this was awesome! Her complement meant so much to me because she’s really self-centered and NEVER gives complements! I was really happy!

Bri_L's avatar

@seekingwolf BIG TIME COOL! That is so neat.

Introverted_Leo's avatar

Oh, yay, I’ll let Dog post first. :P

Dog's avatar

========================
2/22/09
========================

Happy Sunday Everyone!

It is the day we check in with our progress of the week!

Let’s hear the good news!

Introverted_Leo's avatar

Sweet.

This week my word count was 10,491 words (about one and a half chapters). O_O I wrote for like two days where I had like nothing to do, and then I burned out…and now am stuck on my story, lol. I can’t seem to pace myself, either. It’s like I’m either on fire, or I’m stuck and start writing in my journal more trying to figure out what’s not working out still.

Dog's avatar

@Introverted_Leo BRAVO!!!! that is tremendous progress!
I think it is also normal for creativity to come in bursts followed by resting time while the muse ” re- charges”

Awesome Work!

Introverted_Leo's avatar

Thanks Dog. : )

augustlan's avatar

Submitted more resumes. Still no replies :(

Jeruba's avatar

Thanks for starting, @Dog. How’s your week been?

@Introverted_Leo, that is fabulous. And journaling when you can’t seem to advance on your project is a great strategy. Not only do you get to whine (privately) to your heart’s content about your frustration but sometimes you can work out story problems that way—and it counts as daily writing, even though you can’t include the word count in your cumulatve total.

@augustlan, I know how hard that is. You just have to keep submitting and stay optimistic. You may not get a lot of nibbles, but for sure you won’t get them if you don’t.

As for not nibbling, three cheers for you, too, @seekingwolf, and congratulations on getting some recognition. (That was a nice overture, too—maybe a potential new friend?)

My week:
gain: 2008
total: 8550
Worked every single day.

I am finding it much harder than I thought to write what is essentially memoir (at least in its raw form). My writing until now has been mostly fiction. I thought it would be much easier just to record real stuff than to make everything up. Maybe the truth is that it isn’t easy to write anything.

augustlan's avatar

I think you’ve hit the nail on the head there Jeruba… it isn’t easy to write anything. Maybe even harder to do when we can’t bend the facts to our liking! Even so, you are writing every day, and making lots of progress. Keep up the good work.

Dog's avatar

@Jeruba – I agree with @augustlan here- to write the truth would be even more of a challenge than fiction when you cannot change it to whim.

@augustlan- Awesome on submitting the resumes. Eventually one will click and a job will come through!

@Jeruba- FANTASTIC PROGRESS INDEED! Great work here!

This week I completed a complex painting which was picked up yesterday by a manufacturer. It will be offered for sale in a catalog as a Christmas Card this year. Gotta love licensing work- it is like planting a garden. If you are patient you get fruit.
Now I have to finish a painting of black bears.

cyndyh's avatar

Hi, everyone. This week I actually wrote every day. It wasn’t all in one place, but I think the consistency is building toward something. I think another few weeks like this and I can add to it. Cheers folks.

Also, augustlan, you are not alone. I need to get back to submitting resumes. It’s to the point where it depresses me, and I just haven’t done it in a while.

Dog's avatar

@cyndyh good job on daily writing.

Introverted_Leo's avatar

@augustlan: But hey, you got ‘em done, right? That’s good. I hope you get some favorable responses soon.

@Jeruba: nice job! I know I wouldn’t be able to write about my life. It’d probably be pretty boring, even as I get older, lol.

@Dog: high-fives to you! That’s great your work is paying off. : )

@cyndyh: nice, can’t wait to hear what you come up with!

Jeruba's avatar

Excellent, @cyndyh! The discipline of writing every day is a major step and in time becomes a blessing, like daily meditation. I kept it up without a single lapse for three years, through some extremely trying times, until I got involved in a side project so big that I couldn’t do it. This weekly accounting is what is bringing me back to it.

cyndyh's avatar

You folks are so great with the support. It’s great reading about other people’s progress and makes me want to make the news good for the next week, too. Thanks to all of you.

Bri_L's avatar

@augustlan: Don’t let it get you down, especially in todays situation. I have been trying for 1.25 years. Hang in there sistah.
@Jeruba: I would think “yourself” would be the hardest thing to write about if you do it honestly. My brother would have no trouble writing his. He makes it up. We got together for our birthday. WE turn 40 on the 26th and posed the question “what was the most embarrassing thing that ever happened to you?” He blatantly told a story that happened to me and put himself in it. Don’t worry about the pace. Worry about the truth.
@Dog: Awesome!!!! I would love to illustrate steady for work!!! I would love to see some of your stuff if I could. Great job!!
@cyndyh: right on with the write-on! How ever much when you can. Excellent.

My resume is done. I am going to start submitting again. Wish me luck. As I said, 1.25 years, my health insurance runs out at the end of Feb. and I have 2 children, gifts truly, and a wife. I am freaking a bit. Freelance and contract here and there but I need steady.

Dog's avatar

@Bri_L Great job on getting the resume ready to go. I challenge you to submit to 20 prospects this week. that is if you are not in a tiny town in the sticks

seekingwolf's avatar

Another pound gone!! :D

I should be seeing more progress too…I just got my Metformin today in the mail from my parents which should help with the weight loss/insulin resistance.

Bri_L's avatar

@Dog – Zoinks! I better get going!
@seekingwolf – Way to go. just think i you keep that up each week or 2 eh? What is Metformin?

Dog's avatar

@seekingwolf EXCELLENT PROGRESS!

@Bri_L – you can do it!

seekingwolf's avatar

@Bri_L

It’s a drug for people who have PCOS. (like me) It makes people less insulin resistant, which will help with weight loss. When you’re insulin resistent, your body has to make more insulin to break down sugar, and that extra insulin can cause weight gain, appetite increase, and increased fat storage. Metformin will help with my insulin resistance and thus, it will be easier to lose weight!

Bri_L's avatar

Oh, okay. Thanks! I appreciate your sharing.

Introverted_Leo's avatar

@Bri_L: good luck getting the job!

@seekingwolf: <gives you high five>

seekingwolf's avatar

@Introverted_Leo

Yay! <high five back>

Bri_L's avatar

@Introverted_Leo – Thanks much!

Nimis's avatar

[lurk, lurk]
Lurve and support!
Good job, guys. =)

Bri_L's avatar

========================
2/24/09
========================
I just got back from a meeting. I secured the solo graphic and video support for a new company. Also, I am going to be applying to two places by weeks end.

I updated my Video DVD last night.

I created a PDF Portfolio.

and I gathered 6 more video samples.

I was up until 4:30 but I was SO PSYCHED!

Dog's avatar

AWESOME!!!
@Bri_L you just made my day!

aprilsimnel's avatar

::claps for everyone!::

Bri_L's avatar

Thanks! I am SO excited. One of the places I am applying to I have already done contract work for. OMG I am hoping like never before!

seekingwolf's avatar

Metformin made me feel nauseous today. :(
Having PCOS sucks. I don’t want to take medicine if it makes me feel sick! That’s like the worst side effect EVER for me!

I don’t know if I should consider this a setback or what, but let’s hope it doesn’t happen again…

Dog's avatar

@seekingwolf Take it an hour at a time if you must. You can keep on track!

seekingwolf's avatar

@Dog

I’m trying, I really am. :(
I can take it either WITH food or without. I’m wondering what is best. I just don’t want to feel ill so I can go either way.

I took it with food today so I will try without food tomorrow…

Introverted_Leo's avatar

@Bri_L: Go Bri-i, it’s ya birthday! :P Congratulations!

@seekingwolf: yuck, I hate taking medicines that make me feel sick. (I just got off amoxicilin, and the first time I took it was w/o food like I do with most medicines…BIG MISTAKE. o_O) I hope you figure out what works for you.

augustlan's avatar

@Bri_L Way to go! Your hope is rubbing off on me :)

@seekingwolf Give it a few days, either with or without food. Our bodies have a way of adjusting to what we’re taking. I hope it doesn’t last!

@all So, I’ve been kind of staving off a depression for the last several weeks. Basically just surviving the days in La La Land. Yesterday I gave in, and had a good cry. I gave myself permission to wallow in my despair for one day only, and I did. I feel better today, if no more hopeful for a quick resolution. I think I’ll be back on track tomorrow.

Dog's avatar

@seekingwolf- can you take it before bed?

@augustlan- sometimes we have to look down into the black hole before we can focus again on the clouds. May tomorrow be a better day.

Bri_L's avatar

@seekingwolf – That is key, just finding the right method. No matter what don’t give up.

@augustlan – Nothing wrong with a good cry. Helps you really feel what is going on. You hang in there.

@all – My meeting went great. I didn’t get a permanent job but I will get all their graphic, photo retouching, web graphic and video work as well as consulting on their marketing.
WHOO HOO!!!

Jeruba's avatar

@augustlan, a good wallow, with suitable music and theatrics if you’re so inclined, can be cathartic. I think we’ve all been way down at one time or another. Just don’t get stuck there. Things will turn around. You’re smart, talented, and plenty young yet. And you’ve got a whole cheering section right here.

@Bri_L, three cheers for you! As we say at my house, some dollars is better than no dollars. And that is a great way into further opportunities. So glad you’ve shared this news with us!

augustlan's avatar

You guys make me feel happy :)

Bri_L's avatar

yay augustlan!

cyndyh's avatar

@augustlan: I’m glad you seem to be feeling better.

@Bri_L: Getting their work is getting their work, so that’s a good good thing these days. Cheers!

seekingwolf's avatar

You guys are awesome :)

And I didn’t feel barfy today!

Bri_L's avatar

I bet barfy wouldn’t have minded being felt up a little. Just kidding. Glad to hear it!!

Jeruba's avatar

===================== SUNDAY, 3/1/09 =============================

This wasn’t my best week.
Total: 9762
Gain: 2112

I was sick most of the week, and I had to spend two evenings’ writing time on a newsletter article. But some progress is better than no progress. Did I lose ground? Nope!

augustlan's avatar

I painted with my kids today, cleaned up the horrific mess we made, and made Monte Cristo Sandwiches for dinner. That’s a pretty big deal for me, all in one day :)

I’m sorry you weren’t feeling well, Jeruba. Hope it’s all better now.

Bri_L's avatar

@Jeruba – try not to judge best or worst, only progress or not. You succeeded! That is great! Just like you said. AND I am glad you feel better!

@ augustlan – Painting with the kids rocks! Cleaning up after is unheard of!!!! the rest is cream cheese in comparison! good job!

I applied for another job. and kept my temper with my agency who is not serving me that well right now.

Introverted_Leo's avatar

@Jeruba: you made progress despite not feeling well. That’s dedication! I give you kudos. ^_^

@augustlan: your kids should be wearing “I’ve got the best mom in the world” t-shirts. Sounds like you guys had a lot of fun.

@Bri_L: kudos for keeping cool and the application. : )

I made good progress this week with just under 8,700 words.

To put this in an overall perspective, I decided to do a count of all my writing so far (hadn’t done that before) and it’s nearing 106,000 words into my 14th chapter. I have about 18–20 chapters planned (I’m getting there!), so I guess since we started posting here I’ve been writing about a chapter or two a week. Some of it is internal notes to myself, as well, but I can definately tell I’m gonna have to pare some stuff down when I get to the editing stage. (Meh, more work!)

Since we started posting here 3 weeks ago, about 25% of my overall progress so far has been accomplished with all of your support. The other 75% I’ve been working on since Jan. 1st of 2007…over two years ago. O_O (That also includes worldbuilding, coming up with ideas, outlining, etc. in addition to writing. I went through three other versions of my story before I finally settled with the one I have now.)

Thanks to you guys!, I think my rate of progress has improved tremendously. I can’t stress enough to you how slooooowly I felt was working before this, lol. I’m really glad to be doing this with you guys. ^_^ I just hope I can make something out of all of this when all’s said and done…

Bri_L's avatar

@Introverted_Leo That is fantastic!!!! I want to mirror your data and say that my progress has greatly increased by way of accountability to you, a group that cares! I truly thank you.

cyndyh's avatar

Oh, crap. I haven’t done so well this week and here we are around to this again. Sunday came too soon this week. I’ll write more later on.

Jeruba's avatar

Thanks, all, for your encouraging words. My hat’s in the air for Introverted_Leo! @IL, now you know that you are one of those folks who are really motivated by accountability. (Some of us are so contrary that it has the opposite effect.) Have you thought of joining a critique group? Your progress is fantastic and definitely an inspiration.

@augustlan, that’s the kind of day your girls will remember happily many years into the future. A great gift and well worth the cleanup. (Yes, I’m feeling much better now, thanks, except for a lingering cough. Husband has it now, though. Hope you are all mended.)

@Bri_L, good going. Using the momentum you’ve gained is very smart. Your agency (any agency) is probably overstressed right about now, and you will gain points for being understanding. (Now, there’s a field that probably has job openings…)

@cyndyh, you get points just for showing up and reporting something. Thanks for being here!

Introverted_Leo's avatar

Lurve to Cyndy. ^_^

@Jeruba: no, I haven’t. I wouldn’t know where to join one, though. But that does sound like a good idea. I don’t have many people I can show my work to who can give me objective feedback and I could definately use some, as scary as the prospect of critique is, lol.

Bri_L's avatar

@cyndyh – The key is not to dwell. The key is to get excited about the brand new opportunity tomorrow brings. We are all excited about your next update!

Dog's avatar

@augustlan Sounds like a fantastic day!

@Jeruba- Progress it is! I applaud steps forward!

@Introverted_Leo BRAVO!!!!! You are an inspiration!

@Bri_L New opportunity will be knocking! I look forward to the next update!

@cyndyh We all have off weeks- post your progress even if small (as mine is this week) then next week we will roar like lions!

I finished two paintings and the muse took an unexpected holiday.

I am analyzing the cause of the change of attitude and feel that it is perhaps the fact that I have finally given over the bulk of control of my art to the agent whom I signed on with two weeks ago.

Let me explain- In my entire career I handled all the licensing and painting sales. As of the last 2 years the licensing has taken more and more time away from my painting and I found I was spending more time doing contract work and the business end than I preferred.

There were two art agents who had approached me wanting to represent me and last month I finally determined that having an agent would be the wisest course of action.
So I researched both very well- both having excellent reputations in licensing and both with working relationships with the companies I was interested in. So I chose one and signed on.

Now for the first time in years I am not painting under the gun and on a deadline. Thus I am at a momentary loss as to what to do.

I am assuming that in a day or so I will again dive in to the paints.

Introverted_Leo's avatar

Nice job, Dog! It must be nice to kick back for once, eh?

By the way, what kind of paintings do you do (mostly)?

Dog's avatar

Mostly animal art- but someday I will take up classical art again. My goal one day is to paint a life-size painting of a Victorian era Scottish pub scene.

Jeruba's avatar

@Dog, does being under the gun stimulate you? Do you miss the pressure? Maybe you can work out a compromise solution.

Meanwhile, just to warm up, you could paint two smaller-than-lifesize characters sharing a pint in a Scottish pub.

Dog's avatar

@Jeruba you hit the nail on the head. I do need the deadline. Thank you! I will call my agent and ask to be assigned work and in the meantime I will sketch the pub scene. I have been wanting to paint it for years.

Introverted_Leo's avatar

@Dog: that would be an awesome painting! Good luck!

Jeruba's avatar

@Dog, will you describe it for me?

I’ve carried certain pictures in my head for years, too, but I don’t have what it take to paint them. I wish I could put a camera behind my eyes and snap the pictures that I see as if they were projected onto my eyelids from a projectionist booth in my brain.

augustlan's avatar

@Dog Is your avatar one of your paintings?

Dog's avatar

It is a traditional Scottish pub- lots of rich milled woodwork and leaded glass. The atmosphere lightly hazy from pipe smoke as the gents in the corner play a friendly game
and drink.

There is a dog under a table getting a scrap from his master
and outside the window a proper wife waits with an expression that is a cross between boredom and
disapproval.

There is a coat of arms on the wall and the patrons are
weathered old characters. Mutton chop whiskers and eyes that show a dash of humor.

That is a bit of where I am headed with it so far.

Yes- the avatar is one of my worst paintings. I will change it out tomorrow with a better one.

augustlan's avatar

Sounds lovely.

bythebay's avatar

I’m so glad I found this thread, and I’m hoping if I lurk long enough I’ll feel motivated to share some goals of my own. Cheers to every single one of you for your efforts and support of each other.

Introverted_Leo's avatar

@bythebay: the more the merrier. : )

seekingwolf's avatar

No weight lost this week…absolutely none. Zero. Zip. Zilch. :(

gosh, I feel so yucky. I’ve been taking my Metformin and what’s good is that it recently has started to decrease my appetite (all I wanted to eat for dinner was a bowl of broth), but I’m so tired of getting up in the morning with a metallic taste and feeling “sour” in my stomach. I need to get used to it because I think that’s what metformin is supposed to do to you.

I want to try Slimfast as a lunch replacement, since my appetite is almost all gone and I don’t feel hungry much anymore. I tried one today for lunch and it was chocolately chilly delicious-ness! Lots of protein too. I drink chocolate milk everyday so this is no big deal for me. I need to buy some more.

This is a difficult time for me, but I need to keep up with it. I don’t want to get diabetes!

Bri_L's avatar

@seekingwolf – No worries! Your doing great! Just keep at it!!! HOWWWWLLLLLL!

Dog's avatar

You can do this @seekingwolf. One day or one hour at a time. We are here cheering you on.

Introverted_Leo's avatar

Keep it up, @seekingwolf! You’ll get there. : )

augustlan's avatar

I’m sorry you’re feeling crappy SW. Hope it improves soon. Meantime, you didn’t gain any weight! Keep your spirits high.

Bri_L's avatar

===================== WEDNESDAY, 3/4/09 ==========================

I believe I got the head of the department where I am applying for to call and endorse me. I also know they like and are very impressed with my photo shop skills. He said he was happy that I applied. I have done some work with him and another worker in the department who also liked working with me and, it turns out, I went to school with. The only real problem I for see is that they might think I am way over qualified. I am hoping I quashed that by talking to my contact. Also my rep called them as well. Not to mention, with the way the economy is, they should want fewer people who can do more things. That would be the smart thing to do. I would think it wouldn’t hurt to have me in and say “we can only pay you this much.” Then I jump in their lap say “yes” and it’s a done deal.

Dog's avatar

@Bri_L That is incredibly encouraging! I am grinning thinking of you jumping in their laps.
I have a real good feeling about this one for you!

BTW: I so dislike that “over qualified” nonsense. Why would one apply for a job if they did not want to work it regardless of experience or qualifications?

augustlan's avatar

Oooh, oooh, I have an update too! Not a job, though :(
I finally got back to work on the ‘man cave’. Did some more plastering and prep work yesterday. Today, I started paneling the window wall. I’m using tongue and groove ‘rustic’ style boards. I only got three up today, but it looks so good!

@Bri I’m so excited for you! Good luck :)

Dog's avatar

@augustlan I bet it is awesome seeing those boards up- are you imagining the whole room now? Getting to the finish work can be so exciting!

Jeruba's avatar

I agree with you, @Dog. I first ran into that when I was 19 and had dropped out of college. (Some years later I went back and finished.) I kept getting turned down for that reason, and finally I argued with someone, saying basically what you said. She answered, “It’s not in our interests to hire somebody with some college education. They won’t be happy and they won’t want to stay. Come back and see us when you’ve got your degree, and we can talk about other opportunities.”

I said, “When I have my degree, I won’t want to work in an insurance company.”

She looked at me steadily and said, “We don’t owe you a job.”

I thought of that many years later when I was in a hiring position myself. Someone who is obviously overqualified is also obviously desperate. A person who gives off desperation in the same way that some people give off a scent of fear to a dog just trigger all your don’t-hire instincts. That’s why you can’t carry any anger or even much anxiety with you into the interviewer’s office. It’ll make you unhirable.

Jeruba's avatar

Good for you, Aug! Accomplishment feels good and gives you a boost for the next challenge.

@Bri_L, super! Your thinking is right on the mark. I hope you can sell them the bonus-package idea.

Dog's avatar

@Jeruba Your post shows how they are thinking. Very interesting the mind games involved in interviewing.

Jeruba's avatar

Oh, yeah, and there was the time (I was desperate) that I joined a line of applicants for a job packing candy at the Necco factory. They were hiring people right out of the line, and honestly, some of those specimens didn’t look like they could even count to 12. When my turn came they rejected me. I asked why. (Actually it was more like ”WHY???!”) The recruiter said, “Well, if somebody with your education has to apply for a job like this, we figure there is something wrong with them, and we don’t want them either.”

Luckily I did find a job without having to lie about my education, but it took me 2 months, a long time in those days.

Bri_L's avatar

Excellent points you guys.

@Aug – Work around the house the toughest job of all! Way to go!

Introverted_Leo's avatar

@Bri_L: Nice! I hope they give you the job! Sounds like you’d blow ‘em away.

@augustlan: Great progress! I already love the imagery and ambience that’s coming across from your descriptions. : )

Jeruba's avatar

===================== SUNDAY, 3/8/09 =============================

Who’ll go first?

augustlan's avatar

Ooh, ooh, pick me, pick me!

augustlan's avatar

1) Almost all of the plaster work is done in the ‘man-cave’.
2) I think I’ll finish the paneling today.
3) Next step: Paint and load in the furniture!

Dog's avatar

@augustlan I bet it is looking incredible! There is nothing more rewarding than finishing up a home project. One on that large a scale must be double rewarding.

My Week:

It was a slow week for progress but a little was made:

I gave the studio a complete cleaning out and reorganization.
A gift company contacted me regarding creating some fun Christmas Cards with Horses thus I am doing a lot of sketching deciding how I want to approach each idea.

Another company that makes wall decor contacted me and I passed it on to my agent.
It would be lovely to get a contract with an advance to help with the finances before my exhibit in NY. (for the first year I have had to put some of the show expenses on credit. Usually royalties and art sales pay for it entirely but the economy has hit us all)

Introverted_Leo's avatar

@augustlan: yay! It excites me to hear how your painting is coming along!

@Dog: nice! That sounds like a really good opportunity. Let us know how that goes. : )

<is formulating other part of post>

Jeruba's avatar

Great going, @augustlan! That’s real accomplishment. <cheering for you>

@Dog, nice going yourself. A week that isn’t all fireworks can still be very productive, and if every week stands out then none does. Good prospects there, even in the face oif tough times.

I had my best week since starting to report here:
Total: 12,193
Gain: 2431
And I did log some miles on my keyboard every day without fail, holding to my renewed goal and commitment.

The process is slow because I am drawing on old memory, some of it long-buried for a reason, and things keep coming up that lead to other forgotten things. I keep backtracking to make corrections and then pausing for a little research when my personal chronology syncs up to outside events. The writing is much more coarse and clumsy than I usually allow myself to let stand even for a night, but I am forging ahead to see where it goes instead of fussing over the language. It has no beauty now unless it is the beauty of a beach strewn with seaweed, broken shells, soda cans and bits of rotten plastic, and the occasional molding corpse of a sea bird or harbor seal.

Jeruba's avatar

@augustlan, sorry, I went to bed right after posting the week marker and without even stopping to report, so I didn’t see your hand waving all night. Of course I’d have picked you!

Introverted_Leo's avatar

@Jeruba: sometimes I feel the same way, always needing to go back to things rather than moving forward. And it’s hard for me with such a critical eye to see any beauty, like you say, in what I’ve already written.

But still you’re pressing on! I think that’s the hardest part.

Introverted_Leo's avatar

Meh, okay, so I wrote about 6,800 words this week. I made progress, but somehow it does seem like it.

I’m getting frustrated with myself. I had a friend read part of my story once, and he told me my problem was focus. (Of course, I didn’t start him from the beginning, which didn’t help either.) I think I want too many things all at once—too many sub-plots—and I haven’t really paid enough attention to the integrity of the main plot. I like complexity, and I’m thinkin’ perhaps I want too much of it in my story, lol. This can be fixed in the editing stage, I guess, but it also means I’m gonna have to kiss certain elements of my story goodbye. And right now I’m not exactly sure which I’ll have to cut. : (

Also, I just bought the book “How to Write a Damn Good Novel” by James N. Frey (really good so far) and I got to the part where he talks about genres. Basically, what he says is if you ever hope to sell a novel (which I might—I mean, what’s the point in writing one if you aren’t gonna share it?) you have to consider what genre you’re writing in and know what “works” in that genre for it to sell.

I don’t want to get too worried about that, but I was thinking…hm, what genre would I be in? And I think the best genre to describe it would be fantasy, under the subset of urban fantasy. I’ve read different types of fantasy, but I’m thinking maybe I need to read more urban fantasy to see how things are being done, what works, etc.

Blah, blah, blah…anyways, sometimes I wonder if this is a project I should save to finish at another time when I’ve actually written more things and gotten better as a writer. The only creative writing I’ve done before this was a few years of online role-playing with a small online community (though I thought they were all pretty good at it) and some side stuff I write for myself. I’ve got too much “book knowledge” and not enough actual experience. (Boy, isn’t that the story of my life?) And a lot of people suggest “beginner” writers don’t attempt novels to begin with…

I think I’m expecting too much from myself in this project and perhaps I should do something less…big. Or maybe it’s just that I don’t have enough confidence in myself, idk. <hangs head and sobs>

Sorry, I’m done with my rant, lol. Yeah, so welcome to my crazy world. Part of it, anyway. I want to finish this thing, but I don’t know if I should.

Jeruba's avatar

@Introverted_Leo, many writers go through just the kind of self-doubt that you are experiencing. And many first novels do wind up being abandoned. Some say you have to throw one away before you can write anything worthy of an audience. Some say “If anything can stop you from writing—let it.” One thing I have learned after years of monthly writers’ club speaker meetings, two writers’ conferences, and a lot of reading is this: every bit of advice given by one writer will be contradicted by another. (Even that one, I bet.)

Whether to keep going is up to you, but I would say you have more reason to forge on than to stop now. Something is driving you. Go with it. Time enough later to decide what to do with it.

They do say (more writerly advice): “You have to kill your darlings.” I too want to tell about 40 different stories under one cover—each of them interests me so much. The novel I worked on for 2 years was probably half a dozen different novels, really. I had trouble finding my story. You might want to ask yourself: whose story is it? In which character are you most involved? Which character interests you the most? You can pull out a lot of extraneous stuff and save it for another story.

Read Neil Gaiman’s Neverwhere for a good urban fantasy that is practically textbook Jungian archetypes (never a bad blueprint)—even if the “ordeal” does seem lame—and watch what he does. You could do worse than take lessons from this very successful imaginative writer.

augustlan's avatar

@Dog Sounds like you were very productive, even if what you were doing wasn’t your first choice! I wish I lived in New York so I could see your work. Will you consider sharing some of it with us?

@Jeruba Wow! Good work. Just keep slogging through it. You’ve got plenty of time to make it beautiful later. And you will.

@Introverted_Leo I can practically feel your frustration. You are evoking that emotion, so you must be a pretty good writer, right? Keep going! Who knows, maybe you’ll end up with six novels from this one.

@All Well, I didn’t finish the paneling, but it wasn’t for lack of effort… I ran out of material! I’d say it’s about 4/5ths done. I’ll get to Lowes this week and pick up some more. I hope to have it all done by next week.

@Jeruba (Again) Thanks so much for starting this little support group. It means a lot to me. : )

Introverted_Leo's avatar

@Jeruba & @augustlan: thanks for you guy’s encouragement. It’s really easy for me to see all the negatives and lose sight of the good things.

@Jeruba: I’ll definately check out Geiman. And thanks for the advice!
@augustlan: hey, you still got the bulk of it done, so kudos!

Bri_L's avatar

@ all – heads up keep it going. Sorry I can’t put more. I am sick.

augustlan's avatar

@Bri_L I hope you feel better soon. Take care of yourself. : )

Jeruba's avatar

Sympathy, Bri. Next week will be better.

Bri_L's avatar

Thanks all.

Dog's avatar

@Bri_L May you feel better today.

@Introverted_Leo Sounds like you are brainstorming from within. Glad you are making progress and I know you will find your course and run with it!

@Jeruba- In the fine art world most of the “experts” will contradict one another as well. It is interesting how the creative process is approached differently by each person. For me a deadline seems to fire me up while others lock up on a deadline and would rather clean out the sock drawer than finish on time. Your post was very interesting.

@augustlan- give me a moment and I will post a link to one. Here is one of my oil paintings. Not a great photo but it is one of my original paintings. It represents what I love to paint. Most of my licensing work is more whimsical.

augustlan's avatar

@Dog Very nice! I’d like to curl up in that room, too. Thanks for taking the time to link us to it. I see you’ve made it your avatar, too!

Introverted_Leo's avatar

@Bri_L: get well soon!

But take your time. :)

Bri_L's avatar

Thanks, :-)

Dog's avatar

@seekingwolf Where are you?

Bri_L's avatar

@Dog – good point! How about it seekingwolf?

I am partially cured from my headache.
I have ordered my business cards.

On the downside. I have just applied for a $9/hour job where I will stock shelves and sell stuff. I vowed never to sell things unless I made or created them. My dignity as a professional who makes $35/hr to $50/hr freelancing and $24/hr salery is shot to hell. I will be giving up my evenings with my kids who I already don’t see enough. I feel like a failure as a man, a husband and a father because in a year and a half I can’t get a job.

Dog's avatar

@Bri_L consider this a very temporary job and not a beacon of the future. This is a short stop on the way to success. YOU WILL SUCCEED!

Think of it as a stepping stone. Below are a few stepping stones that may help you see my point:

Bill Gates was a congressional page at the Washington state Capitol

William Watkins, current CEO of Seagate Technology, worked the night shift at a mental hospital restraining people who got out of control

Sidney Kimmel, founder and current chairman of Jones Apparel Group, was a shipping clerk for Morton Manufacturing.

Bill Murray stood outside a grocery store selling chestnuts

Rush Limbaugh shined shoes

Robin Williams performed as a street mime

When no stores were interested in carrying his jeans, designer Tommy Hilfiger sold them to buyers from the trunk of his car.

Jerry Seinfeld sold light bulbs by phone

Demi Moore worked for a debt collection agency

Van Halen’s David Lee Roth fluffed pillows and emptied bedpans as a hospital orderly

Madonna worked behind the counter at Dunkin’ Donuts

Jennifer Aniston was a waitress

Brad Pitt moved refrigerators

Just months before setting world records in country music, Garth Brooks was a salesman in a boot store.

Actor Jack Nicholson was “discovered” while working in the mailroom at MGM

Author Stephen King, who was a janitor, was cleaning the girls’ locker room when he became inspired to write the novel “Carrie.”

Bri_L's avatar

@Dog – Thank you very much. I really, really needed that. I can’t thank you enough.

@all – I just posted the following on my “Did you ever feel invisible?” thread:

Well, I am having a really bad day so I may be a bit over sensitive but I am feeling invisible on about 90% of the threads I participate in on Fluther lately. If I go back and look you could remove my answer to no effect. What a waste of time. Time for a break.

I will be coming back to this thread because I really like what we have going here and I want to know how you all are doing.

Dog's avatar

@Bri_L I have been where you are. Sometimes we just need to step back and breathe. I have my fingers crossed for great opportunities for you and look forward to your Sunday update.

seekingwolf's avatar

I’m here guys! Sorry I’ve just been busy with work and tests before spring break!

I lost 2 pounds!!! YES 2 POUNDS!!
The medicine is going better. I don’t feel so sick, well, maybe a little in the morning, but it’s more of a “sour” feeling like there’s a lemon in my stomach.

Anyway, yes! I’m very happy.

Bri_L's avatar

@seekingwolf – Way to go! Great news about the medicine. That is just super. Thanks for the awesome news!!!

seekingwolf's avatar

Yeah sorry I was late in replying….>< I haven’t touched the internet much with all of my school work. Luckily, I’m procrastinating now at 12 am. :)

Dog's avatar

@seekingwolf YES!!!!

@Bri_L I think the consensus on the invisible thread is for you to hang around more. I, for one, very much enjoy your posts.

augustlan's avatar

@Bri_L We lurve you baby. I totally feel your pain. I just applied to be a cashier at a grocery store and at a tobacco store… and didn’t even get called for an interview for either place! Crappity-crap-crap. Things will get better, but in the meantime we’ve gotta’ do what we’ve gotta’ do. : )

@Dog Your post helped me feel better, too. Thanks for that.

@seekingwolf Way to go! I’m so glad you are adjusting to the medicine, and having success with the weight loss, too. High-five!

@all I can’t find the paneling I need to finish my wall! The place I bought it from isn’t carrying it anymore. I found a place that has the same type of paneling, but it’s not a guaranteed match. I’m going to check it out on Friday. I am willing myself not to panic. Just barely succeeding.

Introverted_Leo's avatar

@seekingwolf: Woo! Hooray for SW! ^_^

On another note, I’ve totally been procrastinating as well. Now I’m paying for it trying to get two projects done before the end of the day, lol. o_O WAH!

@Bri_L: Dude, that must be really tough, but you gotta do what you gotta do. I can tell you really care about your family and you’re giving them your absolute best. They can’t ask for anything more than that! Hopefully something better, though, will come around in time. Mucho lurve for you. <3 <3

@Dog: and lurve to Dog for the words of wisdom. : )

@All: yeah, I don’t have any good news (except that my spring break starts tomorrow, haha). But I’ll wait ‘til Sunday to see if something redeeming happens.

Jeruba's avatar

Hurrah for you, @seekingwolf! Thank you for letting us share your success.

@Dog, that is one comforting list. Thank you. And I think your picture is beautiful.

@Bri_L, I very much understand the feeling of conflict and the blow to your pride and professional identity. But you have to think of it another way. At my house we say this: “Some dollars is better than no dollars.”

Using abilities that you have in order to earn support for your family through decent labor is both dignified and respectable. Your real abilities include the ability to move your body and use your eyes, your hands, and your brain, and you don’t take those for granted or shrug them off lightly after you’ve spent time with someone who’s lost them (or you start to have arthritis and lower back pain yourself). Exchanging these and not your finest talents for a paycheck takes nothing away from the fact that you do have greater abilities and professional skills. They will also find their market in their time. But right now you are able to fulfill a demand in the workplace and receive compensation for it, and hundreds of thousands around us can’t say that.

I commend you for having the courage to both seek and accept employment that is beneath your level of ambition. Maybe it will lead to other opportunities and maybe it won’t, but you are wise to do what you can for now when better choices are long in coming.

@augustlan, I admire your ability to stay focused and productive. I hope you can find the materials you need.

Bri_L's avatar

@all – thanks. I will draw on your words of encouragement. Thank you!

Jeruba's avatar

===================== SUNDAY, 3/15/09 =============================

Not a strong week for me:
Total: 14033
Gain: 1840

But I have still done something every day. I’m in chapter 6 now, and I have been through some difficult territory. So even without a high word count, I know I’m making progress.

How about you? Regulars, let’s hear your stories. Lurkers—what are you up to? Tell us how it’s going.

Introverted_Leo's avatar

@Jeruba: it’s good to see you’re still persevering! (I was thinkin’ about dropping for a while, haha.)

Alrighty, so I was hopin’ my word count would increase by the time Sunday rolled around…

Didn’t happen, lol.

Here’s the deal: basically, after taking Jeruba’s advice about characters and reading some more things, I’m shifting the focus of my story and reconsidering the entire plot. There’s a lot of things I’ve already written I’ll be able to use, but I thought the foundation of my story needed some major changes. In a sense, I guess I am kinda starting over…again. : /

I hate this ‘cause it’s not the first time I’ve done this…but I feel good about the changes I have planned this time. Unfortunatelly, I did all the other times as well so I’m not so sure how much that’s saying, lol. Idk, I’m going back to the basics with detailed character sketches and re-doing my outline. I’ve got a different vision of where I’m headed, but I need to solidify the plan before I actually restart the writing process. (I feel like I just built a building on top of a really crappy foundation and am now paying the price to keep it from totally crumbling to the ground.)

<sighs> So yeah, that’s my “progress.” I’m not throwing in the towel, but still. At least I’m seeing the flaws in my work and learning from it.

augustlan's avatar

Well, I didn’t die. That’s something, right?

I also did not get the paneling yet. Will look tomorrow. :(

Jeruba's avatar

Always! Living another week = good.

Dog's avatar

@Jeruba Fantastic! Wading through the difficult parts and still stepping forward!

@Introverted_Leo You can do this! If this is your litmus test then next week we are hoping that you will report a solid start on the new direction!

@augstlan May today be fruitful!

My progress this week: Sold one painting. Was given an offer on another which I declined and then later kicked myself for not taking it as in these times larger paintings are not selling as well.

Other than painting one small painting I have not accomplished much. Next week should be better.

Introverted_Leo's avatar

@Dog: thanks for the encouragement. ^_^

It seems a lot of us this week are feeling we haven’t made “much” progress. But at least there is some going on.

augustlan's avatar

Everyone is still trudging along, and reporting in. That’s a great thing. Like the question says, ‘Some progress is better than no progress’! Keep up the good work, and thanks for the encouragement everyone.

Dog's avatar

Waiting on @Bri_L and @seekingwolf

Jeruba's avatar

And cyndyh and maybe Marina.

And—who knows?—perhaps Nimis and aprilsimnel and daloon will uncloak and let us know how they’re doing on whatever they’re doing.

Bri_L's avatar

@ Jeruba – Again, considering the topic matter you go!

@ Introverted Leo – Hey the process is part of the result. If it wasn’t you would walk into the room and there would just be this book. How confusing. How much more satisfying will this be knowing that you didn’t settle?

@ Dog – One painting in today’s economy is great and who knows what may happen with the other one. I know for me, once a piece of art gets in my head and under my skin it grips me. Don’t give up hope.

I got a migraine. BUT I got my business cards. I also applied for another real job. Didn’t hear from the other real job or the part time one yet. But I just keep trying. I am learning html and CSS and when I have something to show I will give you guys a look see.

Thanks for the support all.

Introverted_Leo's avatar

@Bri_L: likewise! (Can’t wait to see some of your work! ^_^)

augustlan's avatar

Good job Bri! No where is seekingwolf? I sent off 4 more resumes last night.

Dog's avatar

@Jeruba Yes! What about cyndyh, Marina, Nimis, aprilsimnel and daloon?

@Bri_L Good news on the business cards and further learning on html and css. You will get one of the real jobs soon. I would like to see some of your work too.
Hope the headache is gone.

Have to paint this week- last night my good ol’ dog got sick and I had to take her for treatment at a 24 hour Veterinarian. I was there six hours and it cost nearly $100 for each hour. I am grateful though- it looks like she will make a full recovery which will not be the case for many of the pets who came in last night.

So – new motivation- to get the Vet bill paid off through paintings and to sell a few more to catch up on household bills. I know I can do this.

augustlan's avatar

@Dog I’m glad your doggie is going to be ok! Now get to work and pay those bills ;-)

Jeruba's avatar

@Dog, I wonder if your veterinarian would love a beautiful animal painting in full or partial payment of the bill. Not every vet really has to frame and hang pictures of dogs playing poker.

augustlan's avatar

^^ Great idea.

Bri_L's avatar

@ augustlan – Did you say 4 resumes? WOW! Great going!

@ Dog – So very glad your dog is ok. That had to be a worrisome night. Begin a new.

seekingwolf's avatar

Lost 1 pound this week.
I’m getting there!!! :D

Dog's avatar

AWESOME SEEKINGWOLF!

@Jeruba- great idea on the barter however I already paid. The good news is that I painted yesterday and the painting literally sold within 1 minute of posting it for sale. I am now going to studio to paint more!

@augustlan Fantastic on the 4 resumes!

augustlan's avatar

@seekingwolf I’m so glad it’s going well for you! Also, I’m glad you posted… I was getting worried about your absence.

@Dog One minute? Wow!

Introverted_Leo's avatar

Three cheers for @seekingwolf and @augustlan! (does the three cheers :P)

seekingwolf's avatar

@augustlan

Oh don’t worry about me being late. :)
I’m currently on Spring Break at home and am just enjoying the peace. I’m not on my computer as much as I would be if I were at school. But don’t worry, I’ll be more active soon, once I get back to school.

augustlan's avatar

Enjoy your break. : )

Bri_L's avatar

CHEER CHEER CHEER for Seeking wolf! I re-read the tread and you are coming along so well do you know that!!!!

Jeruba's avatar

===================== SUNDAY, 3/22/09 ======================

Looking forward to everyone’s reports.

This is an unusual week for me. The anniversaries of both my parents’ deaths fall within the same week: my mother’s a year ago this date, and my father’s 25 years before that. I am committed to journaling memories each day of this week to share with my siblings. So far I have done the first three promised narratives. Total word count: 4434.

These are outside my usual writing, but they partly fall into line with what I have been working on. The main thing is that I am keeping up every day.

Dog's avatar

@Jeruba Your work this week most certainly is on the lines of your major work and I am touched you are doing such a special thing for your siblings. It is an incredible gift that will be passed down the generations. AWESOME!

This week I was able to sell a painting and my agent brought me a contract for wall decor using 10 images I have painted. Much to my shock one of the images I do not have a quality digital file of though I was sure I did. The original sold back in 2005. There is only one solution- to re-create the work.

I started re-painting it on Friday and should have it finished and photographed today.
Then I will send the 10 digital files to my agent and the contract will be signed.

I do wish that these contracts meant I would get $ in advance but with the economy royalty advances are non-existent. But the good news is that in 2 years I will start to get actual royalties. :) It is like planting a fruit tree.

So that is my week- and my goals for next week are to paint 2 more paintings.

How about everyone else?

Introverted_Leo's avatar

@Jeruba and @Dog: great job you guys!

I’ve made progress, some high word count or another…but other things haven’t been going so well in my life. I need to take some time to focus on bettering myself starting from the inside out. I know that sounds really vague, but let’s just say I need to find my own personal motivation to get me through life before it’s too late.

That said, I may or may not actually make much progress on my story until I get this sorted out.

Jeruba's avatar

@Dog, you are really sizzling. Great report!

@Introverted_Leo, life can get really messy sometimes. I understand. And I also understand the simultaneously discouraging and upifting realization that you need to go back and drastically rethink things in your work, as you told us about last week. Maybe those two things can work together. Keep writing if you can. Don’t try to write specifically about what you’re going through right now. Just write your story, to the extent you can, and draw upon your own experience as much as you need to to make the story work. But always give your attention where it’s needed most. I am sensing that there might be another commitment you have to make right now, and if so, best wishes with that.

Dog's avatar

@Introverted_Leo I can completely relate to having to rework ones life before proceeding with a project. So
Your goals are shifting a bit- now your short term goal is to get on solid emotional ground.

Good for you for seeing the need to work on your life before getting too far off track.

augustlan's avatar

I found a substitute for the paneling! I’ll be outside today, cutting all the pieces to size and inside tonight, attaching them to the wall. Yesss!

@Jeruba Wow… that’s a great idea, and will surely be appreciated by your siblings. I have a feeling it will also be quite helpful in regards to your main project. Good job!

@Dog Sorry to hear that you have to ‘recreate the wheel’ but glad to hear that you can! Great news on the sale and the future royalties. Sounds like you’ll be harvesting that fruit for a long time to come!

@Introverted_Leo Life sure does get in the way sometimes, doesn’t it? It will still benefit you and your work greatly in the long run. If there’s anything we can do to help you with your internal work, please let us know. There is no greater reward than successful work on YOU!

@All Off topic completely, but may be very helpful: Does everyone know that if you type a space before the @ sign (on a new line, or in the middle of a sentence), the drop down list of user names will pop up? Saves a lot of typing!

Dog's avatar

@augustlan Alas- it does not work on the iPhone…
Great news on the paneling substitute! Now there is nothing hold you back!

Dog's avatar

Still Seeking Bri_L, Seekingwolf and possibly cyndyh, Marina, Nimis, aprilsimnel and daloonagain.

Snoopy's avatar

OK all….jumping in a bit late here. I hope that is OK? I am losing weight. I have lost 9 pounds in as many weeks. I finally feel like I am starting to get some traction.

Gosh, it has kinda sucked. Like SeekingWolf, I finally feel like my appetite has decreased. It really felt like I was going through some kind of withdrawal as opposed to just changing habits for the first few weeks.

Jeruba's avatar

Welcome, @Snoopy! Of course it’s ok. A lot of support here. Good for you for your efforts and your success! Next Sunday I will post a new date marker, as I do every week, and you be sure to stop in and let us know how it’s going. You can join the cheering section too.

Jeruba's avatar

@augustlan, catching up with you—I worried about your paneling all week! So glad to know you are on the move again.

Introverted_Leo's avatar

@all: thanks for all of your support. ^_^ I’ll try and make progress on the story if I can, but one of my goals is to, well, not keep pushing higher priority things aside. I can be somewhat of an escapist at times, lol. NO ES BUENO.

@augustlan: That’s exciting! I’m sure it’ll turn out fantastic. : ) (And thanks for the tip!)

@Snoopy: Welcome to the club! And congrats on your weightloss! Keep up the good work.

augustlan's avatar

Yay Snoopy! Glad you’re here, and doing well.

I. Finished. The. Paneling. Whoo! It looks great, very rustic, which is exactly what my husband wanted. Next: Paint the other three walls, and install trim.

Snoopy's avatar

@augustlan I am not sure what you are finishing, but we are currently finishing our basement. What a slow progression. Every week we focus on the fact that it is a little further than the week before….Walls sealed. DriCore flooring done. Studs up. Electric done. Insulation done.

Paneling is our current project. Guess what? Lowes sells Light Birch and MtVernon Light Birch. Yup. We got them mixed together by accident. UGH! Borrow a truck (again). Back to Lowes to exchange. Sold out of the one we wanted. To another Lowes. Sigh.

I, too, feel your paneling pain.

Dog's avatar

@Snoopy WELCOME!
Congrats on the loss to date! Great job!

Jeruba's avatar

Hurray for you, Aug! How nice to be able to see real, concrete, visible evidence of progress. My dang hard drive looks exactly the same no matter how many words I pile on it. Maybe I should go plant a flower.

Snoopy's avatar

@Jeruba Every Sunday, I write in my planner my current weight. This allows me to see that there is actual progress, no matter how slow.

Perhaps, you could do something similar w/ a word count one time per week….?

seekingwolf's avatar

I didn’t lose weight this week. It stayed the same, down to the 2nd decimal place. :( Seriously!

I’ve been feeling yucky and fat lately. even though I didn’t gain, I still feel like I did! I think it’s because my monthly is coming up and I feel all bloated and disgusting. :(

I’m going to my meditation group in about 30 min though, that should make me feel better!

seekingwolf's avatar

Oh, on another positive note…I’ve found that my finger tips have been peeling incessantly and are all dry and wrinkly (weird). I asked my dad about it, who is a doctor, and he explained to me that it’s a good sign! It’s a common thing that happens once someone starts a medicine like Metformin because it’s a sign that their insulin level is decreasing and returning to normal! w00t!

I also really like my Slimfast. If I freeze it partially, it tastes just like a milkshake. I drink the “rich chocolate royale” and it’s really yummy. I don’t feel deprived at all.

Dog's avatar

@seekingwolf no gain is still great! Glad the meds are working.

@agustlan Wow! The man cave must be looking awesome!!!

augustlan's avatar

To be honest, it still looks like shit… all except that one wall, with it’s new windows and paneling job!

@seekingwolf No gain is a good thing, don’t be discouraged! Yay for your peeling fingertips! << Something I never thought I’d say.

seekingwolf's avatar

I’m so proud of you guys. :)

Jeruba's avatar

@Snoopy, I do log a daily word count, and that’s what I post once a week. And I know it’s real work (real work, especially lately), and I am not ashamed of it. But I still feel sometimes like I have nothing at all to show for my efforts. A few awards, yes, but no publications. And no freshly paneled rooms either.

Snoopy's avatar

@Jeruba Ahh. Oops sorry! Well think of it this way….The words that you have gained are there….never to be lost (unless you hit the delete key…)....compared to weight loss——where there is the constant threat of backsliding.

I am not comparing the struggles….just pointing out that this is at least one thing you don’t have to worry about :)

it is all very clear in my head, I assure you….ahem

Out of curiousity, have you attended any writer’s workshops or something comparable? Something where you are in the trenches w/ other writers giving each other encouragement/suggestions…?

Dog's avatar

@Jeruba I know what you mean about nothing tangible to show for the effort. Though I have several contracts with manufacturers the economy
has delayed production and thus royalties on several of them.
We are trying to live as modestly as possible and are hoping the economy improves before the complete depletion of our savings.

I know the economy will recover but I feel that without the big royalty checks my work is not validated.

@augustlan it may not be perfect yet but look at how far you have come!

Jeruba's avatar

@Snoopy, oh, yes. I belong to a writers’ club, attend monthly speaker meetings, contribute to the newsletter, attend special workshops, attend open mic readings and read my work, take special classes from time to time at university extension schools, have attended two writers’ conferences, and submit work all the time. I just can’t cross over into the realm of legitimate publication, or anyway haven’t so far.

I do thank you for your encouragement (and I am no stranger to weight loss struggles, so I see your point).

Bri_L's avatar

@ All – I just want to say how heart warming it is to see everyone hear each week. Even in times when one of us chimes in with what we perceive as a less than stellar week of output, the others see to it that it is viewed with perspective. Again, I encourage everyone to read from the start of the thread on down and just look how far we have all come. Read how the tone in our efforts has changed. How different the way we approach our goals and our hurdles is.

I thank you all. I have but one complaint.

Snoopy. I need a spring Snoopy please. :-)

I didn’t get the job at RWBaird. Turns out there wasn’t really one there. It was a formality posting.

I am applying for one at UW Milwaukee that sounds pretty neat.

Keep up the good work all. You all brought me a warm heart with your efforts, your stories and your viewpoints.

Dog's avatar

@Bri_L Bummer about RWBaird but I am encouraged about UW Milwaukee! Will keep paws crossed for you on that one.
Hey- where did you live in California?

Snoopy's avatar

<<<<<< Only for you, @Bri_L :)

@Dog I tried the link for your work (as above) but it didn’t work…?

Dog's avatar

My apologies Snoopy!
Here it is again.

Snoopy's avatar

@Dog Thanks :) If I may, the thing that strikes me the most about your link is, well, the lighting. I am no expert, but it looks spot on….the reflections off of the pottery and the relections due to the whiteness of the sheet.

It is fascinating to me how there is no way in heck I could paint anything like that….My paiting is limited to toddler-esque skill sets.

Bravo!

Dog's avatar

@snoopy ::blush:: many thanks!

augustlan's avatar

Hey Bri, I’m so glad you posted… I was missing you! Good luck on the UWM job :)

Snoopy's avatar

@Dog I might be overstepping here…forgive me if I am….
Taking off on the suggestion above of bartering of your work w/ your vet….
What if you asked to hang a few things in the vet’s lobby? You could then 1)potentially commission paintings from people or 2) sell your work or 3) simply advertise your work w/ a clear NFS sign with your contact info.
You never know who the vet’s other patients are….

Dog's avatar

@Snoopy- interesting thought. I will look into it. Thanks for the great idea.

Introverted_Leo's avatar

@Dog: wow, nice painting!

Jeruba's avatar

Great idea, @Snoopy!

Glad to see you here, @Bri_L. That’s just the spirit in which we keep posting. Best of luck with your application.

Bri_L's avatar

@dog – Davis then Alameda.

Jeruba's avatar

===================== SUNDAY, 3/29/09 ======================

Not ready to report yet, but here’s the marker. Take it away, gang!

Jeruba's avatar

Okay, it’s 2:07 a.m. on Sunday, and I have just wrapped the last installment of my project for this exceptional week. So I am going to count it all as part of the week. I wrote all day long last Sunday, about 11 hours total, and every night this week and all day today, to complete the promised memoir. I sent it to my siblings one day at a time.

Word count for the week: 12,606
Total for the project (10 days): 17,040

Each of these pieces has included a selection of illustrations, both from family photos and from web searches, and the pieces have all been nicely laid out with inset photos and drop caps and then turned into PDFs. The result is more like a small book than a bunch of little essays. I am planning to add a preface and an epilogue, but the committed work is done.

augustlan's avatar

@Jeruba Wow… you had quite a week! No wonder I was seeing less of you here. Congratulations on finishing your project, I hope your sibs are enjoying it.

Well, my big (not) accomplishment for the week was picking a paint color for the man cave. My kids helped me decide on one today. Mocha it is! I also sent out a couple more resumes, with the same non-results. :(

Snoopy's avatar

@Jeruba Wow! You had a great week….are you doing a POD (print on demand) type thing to get it out to your peeps?

@Augustlan Congrats on more forward progression

OK….so here is my check in….abandon judgement before you read on….

So….here is the deal. I haven’t lost any weight this week. However, I haven’t gained. My husband has worked funky hours, ALL of us have been sick w/ the crud (clods, coughing, snot, etc.). One kid had pinkeye to boot. I am the nursemaid for everyone….and the job doesn’t stop if I become a patient. Ahhhhh, motherhood. So, I haven’t exercised at all.

My husband agreed to try to lose weight as well. Neither of us is obese by any stretch of the imagination….not even close….we could just stand to “lose a little weight”. I have lost 9 pounds in 10 weeks. My husband jumped on the health bandwagon 3 weeks ago and has lost 8 pounds. His job is physical, so apparently all he has needed to do is decrease his portions a bit and not eat at night and voila, he is dropping weight left and right.

Now (guilt, guilt, guilt)I am proud and happy for him but part of me is like….“Cripes!! This isn’t fair. He doesn’t even care if he loses weight.”

Weight loss is very, very simple. You must burn more calories than you consume. It isn’t that hard. What most people lack is willpower and strong desire (and that includes me….). IMO.

I could absolutely lose more weight quickly. I cannot stand to exercise (<<<< this is the real problem), but have amazing willpower when focused. The thing is, it is pointless to put myself throught the torture of losing weight by severely decreasing caloric intake, as it is not likely that I would maintain it long term.

What I am trying to do, is modify my diet in a reasonable, maintainable way….

My achilles heel is the exercise. I hate to exercise.

This is the missing puzzle piece. Worse, I know it. More guilt, guilt, guilt.

I have a NordicTrack that someone gave to me. We are members at a place to get my kids started on swim lessons. We get in the pool w/ the kids to help them learn to swim (outside of swim lessons).

I can give you all of the BS reasons why I haven’t/don’t exercise. It really all boils down to…..I don’t like it. Period.

I have erased and retyped this multiple times. I am not super comfortable w/ this being so, uh, public. I don’t know how much I will continue on here, sharing this much honestly. I don’t mind the weigh in, I suppose….but it seems a little hollow, if I am not sharing as above. I don’t mind sharing w/ those of you who are posting in here….but the notion of running nude amongst all of the Fluther community? eh, no.

Dog's avatar

@Jeruba WOW- and I really mean WOW. You are on fire! To have gotten so much done is a proper and orderly fashion is beyond impressive. Your organization is inspiring.

@augustlan Great job picking out the mocha for the man-cave. It should make a nice warm manly area. Do not be discouraged on the resumes. The important thing is that you are stepping forward with each one and you never know which one might be re-evaluated and garner you an interview in the future. How many will you send out this week?

@Snoopy Yeah- I know what you mean about exercise. I am forcing myself to take a walk this morning. Walking does not seem like exercise and I do not sweat which is my real aversion to big workouts. Not gaining is awesome.

@Bri_L I live in Los Angeles/Ventura area and was just curious- we are of nearly the same age so I thought perhaps we might have crossed paths. How is the search going?

Will post update soon (I am working on finishing something so I can add it to my list :) )

Snoopy's avatar

I just found this online, regarding the Nirvana Fallacy

Worth a look at for all in here….

We have a similar mantra in our household, referenced in part of the article: Forward. Progression>

i.e. any progress, no matter how small, is just that….Progress

Dog's avatar

@Snoopy That article is great. #5 is my key point. Getting started on a project is the hardest step. Also #4 is important.

Introverted_Leo's avatar

@Jeruba: nice progress! Btw, what are you doing up so early? lol

@augustlan: mocha is such a nice color. I bet that’ll look real nice on the paneling. ^_^

@Snoopy: I love your candor. At least you’re being honest with yourself, though, right? But it’s like you said, you didn’t gain any weight and that’s still a good thing.

Speaking of not really wanting to do something…I entered this contest for novice interior designers and was accepted into the competition. This is great, but the thing is I thought we only had to actually set up the room we designed if they chose our room renderings as finalists. Apparently everyone who was accepted into the competition has to set up their room on provided 10’ x 20’ displays and provide their own materials. That includes furniture. <flatline glare>

Alright, so I came up with a design for a sunroom area and decided to only use furniture from IKEA to place boundaries for myself since there were virtually no real rules for the actual design of our space. But, to be honest, I’m not really proud of my submission. Nothing really makes me excited about it. Granted, I waited ‘til the last hours to do it and turn it in, which would explain part of it. The other part is that I just didn’t want to do it, especially since we had to come up with our own furniture and supplies, which can cost a lot.

Unfortunetely, lol, I’d told my mom about the competition before and how there were large cash prizes for the top for designs. Given that I’m in financial need, she was pretty pissed I tried to put it off and basically had to crack the whip and tell me to get something together for submission…gah, my grandma just called, sorry. Lost train of thought…

ANYWAYS, I have to go down to IKEA to see if they can sponsor me in the competition so I don’t have to pay for all of this stuff, otherwise I won’t be doing it. (I’m a college student, for goodness sake! I’m trying to win money, not spend it!)

Idk, I just don’t really want to do it that much anymore. We’ll see what IKEA says.

On another note, the only progress I’ve made on my story is some brainstorming and journal writing in my old-school pen-and-paper journal (I get so used to the computer sometimes).

Every time I try to do this story, I feel like I’ve never really “nailed” the concept of it. Sometimes I think I have, and then I begin to write it and I see that my vision has stopped at some point in the development stage. I mean, I’ve got some good practice in characterization and world building throughout all the re-writes, haha, but I’d really like to nail this thing this time around, asking myself tough questions and making sure there’s a reall, working logic to the things that happen in the “world” of my story. I’m really trying to consider the bigger picture as well as my protagonists’ roles in the story and making sure they support each other (micro vs. macro). It really is sorta like trying to be God for a…well, several years, lol.

I want to keep it simple, but my mind just doesn’t work that way. I get so excited with little ideas. It’s hard not to overlook the overall larger story arc beyond the characters (I have two protagonists).

Wow…sorry for the long post. <_< This really is just like my typical journal entries—long and pointless! </sarcasm>

Snoopy's avatar

@Introverted_Leo What about doing a room design from thrift stores? Saves money and you could do something retro….?

Jeruba's avatar

I feel really spent today, as you do after completion of a project. I am so glad to be tired out by something other than my job for a change! It was only ten days of intensive writing, but it was also a headlong traversal of my childhood years and personal history across a gap of decades, with many pauses over details and many digressions that were ultimately curbed. Reflecting now, I’d say the whole is greater than the sum of its parts. It was very much worth the doing. It turned out that one chapter really summed up my family life growing up: the one with the theme “Sundays.”

Among unanticipated outcomes is that now I have created several doors, points of entry into past time, and I can reenter them at will. I don’t have to start over by searching for signposts.

I wrote it for my siblings, but it also gives me something to hand to my own children if they care to learn about their family background.

Most remarkable to me is the color and tone of the profiles of my parents as they emerged in this retelling—very much from my own point of view, and not knowing how accurately I have recalled or interpreted things. It shows me just how complex, conflicted, and ultimately sad I thought their stories were. And that is without ever getting near to the years when their marriage was breaking down.

All this emotional overlay is part of why I’m worn out today, and yet feeling rather satisfied and pleased with myself, as if I’d actually accomplished something.

Introverted_Leo's avatar

@Snoopy: I thought about doing that, but the thing is I don’t want to spend any money, lol.

Jeruba's avatar

@augustlan, I wouldn’t underrate any kind of progress. Having something constructive to do, where you can actually see results, while you go through the very draining and demoralizing process of looking for work (any time, but especially now) is very healthy. I say good for you.

@Snoopy, I understand what you mean about feeling exposed. It is hard to write those things down plainly for yourself to see, never mind others, and you are on the Internet, for God’s sake—the antithesis of privacy. You never know when you might be outed, either. I spotted someone here that I’ve known casually for 30 years, but this person hasn’t recognized me yet. You never know. So—don’t say any more than you feel comfortable saying. But you do know that we are all interested in your progress and are cheering you on, and sympathizing with setbacks. Thanks for sharing your tale. (And I have the same exact problem with weight loss as you.) I have a little spray bottle of something called “Guilt-Away” that I think I ought to lend to you.

@Introverted_Leo, I am interested in your design propject and wonder if the IKEA store would let you carry it out right on their premises. Might be some publicity in it for them, too. As for your story, I so sympathize! I think your problems and mine are very much alike. This is one reason why I feel so proud of having told the sprawling, intractable story of my childhood and my parents’ histories in ten one-day segments, each gathered around a theme. I left out huge, huge amounts of material but tried to make a little stand for a lot, and the chapters range from 800 to 2600 words—really not very long. This tells me I can handle big material in manageable chunks. A timely reminder!

@Dog, looking forward to your update as soon as you have one, and a big thank-you to you for being so generous with your encouragement of others.

Thanks, all, for staying with this thread for seven weeks now. I feel like we all have a stake in each other’s success.

Introverted_Leo's avatar

@Jeruba: that’s really awesome that you were able to complete your memoir and be able to share that with your family. I’m too young to really understand why anyone would want to read a memoir about me when I get older, heh, but apparently families love to hear about their loved one’s lives. I like how you said you added pictures. That would certainly add a nice personal touch to it.

And with the whole being greater than the sum of the parts…that’s is like the magical quality of a good piece of work. <sighs> Hopefully I’ll eventually be able to accomplish the same with my project.

@Snoopy: I really like #8 on that link you posted. Sometimes my progress is stunted for the fear of not being able to create something “perfect” or a masterpiece. Which is funny because I know that even the “masters” out there aren’t capable of absolute perfection. Still, I find it dificult to abandon the desire for perfection and to just strive for my best and accepting that it isn’t going to be perfect.

augustlan's avatar

@Snoopy Thanks for sharing a part of your life with us. I know it can be uncomfortable to do that, but I’m so glad you did! Not gaining any weight during a period of illness and care-taking is pretty damn impressive in my book. BTW, nothing unusual about your husband losing weight faster/easier than you are… it’s pretty common (if utterly frustrating!). Sometimes, life just isn’t fair dammit. Also, great article! I’m going to send it to my 14 year old perfectionistic (is that even a word?) daughter.

@Introverted_Leo Wow, that took a lot of courage to enter the design contest. I would love (and be terrified by the idea of) that! If you are allowed to alter your design at this point, could you see if any friends/family would loan you some furniture? If not, and Ikea doesn’t sponsor you, perhaps your mother would like to ‘invest in your future’, since she was so keen on you entering. ;) As for your story, every little thing you’ve done and are doing will make it that much better in the long run. Keep at it!

@All Thanks for the encouragement. I really appreciate it.

Dog's avatar

@Introverted_Leo I can see where you would struggle with the contest. It is a challenge and would have been ideal had you known in advance it would COST you right off. You never know though- you may still place!

Here is my update. We had company for the last two weeks and it threw off my work. Now I am sitting around wasting my precious time but will kick myself in the posterior as soon as I have posted and get my displays ordered for my exhibition in NY.

I did indeed sign this week on the wall plaques and processed the images and sent them in. I repainted the one that was bad and the new one is an improvement on the last. Other than that I did go on a hike by myself yesterday just for me. The family was all supposed to go but everyone was stalling so I just went. It was very peaceful.

This week I need to find energy and motivation to get caught up on on the work piled up. I accepted another commission to paint a design that will be set as a tile mural on the outside of an Italian Restaurant. I really do not have time for this one and am annoyed with myself. I cannot deny that the money would be nice though. In this economy I feel I must accept anything offered.

So that is it for me. I was very much hoping to be able to say I had already finished my exhibition work and was painting the Christmas Horses.

Snoopy's avatar

@Dog The sign for the restaurant sounds interesting! Just put one foot in front of the other…..perhaps pick the easiest of your tasks that remain so that you will feel good about your accomplishment :)

Introverted_Leo's avatar

@augustlan: maybe…I guess it couldn’t hurt to ask. (Oh, and believe me, I am very terrified, lol.)

@Dog: yes, I hope I can place! Even honorable mention wins 500 bucks.

And your mural commission sounds like a really neat opportunity, though not having the time for it sounds like it could be kinda stressful. Were you still going to do it, or have you changed your mind? (It’s hard to tell by your answer.)

@all: I did get to IKEA today to speak with someone (several someones) about possibly sponsoring me or lending out their furniture. Of course, there was some beauracracy to go through and I ened up not really getting an answer, but a lady is supposed to give me a call sometime soon (she was in a business meeting). I may sound a little terse b/c I had to drive out of my way to speak to them so I could actually show them the information about the contest and my rendering. But ah, well, I guess that’s what email is for!

So no final answers, but hopefully they might be able to lend something.

BTW, thanks for all the encouragement from everyone one. And let’s keep up the good work!

Bri_L's avatar

@Introverted_Leo – The creative process can ware a person down, but it is a vital part of it. Don’t discount what your doing in your writing.

@Jeruba – Awesome job! You rolled!!! It must have felt amazing!

@augustlan – Picking the color for ANYTHING is a task, let alone the walls. Good job!

@Snoopy – Share only as much as your comfortable with. But congrats on what you didn’t do, gain weight. Also, when your losing weight, hitting a flat line now and again is part of it. That is when people fall off the wagon. Don’t let it get you down. Just keep aware of your intake and keep trying!

@Dog – I am living vicariously through you my friend. I love hearing about your success. I would love to see your work if you have a site or something. Great job. I have never been to Los Angeles. I live In WI. I did live in Davis, CA the Alameda for 3 years.

I am keeping up with applying to at least 1 job I would like to get a week. This week a local fine cheese company is looking for a graphic artist. I love cheese. If you meet anyone who knows me you ask them. It is even listed as an interest on my resumé. I would really like this one.

Dog's avatar

Bri- do you have a website? I will exchange via PM if you do!

augustlan's avatar

@Bri_L Good job guy! I’ll keep my fingers crossed for your cheese job… that would be a perfect fit. :)

I worked more in the room today, and bought the paint and primer. I also sent out 4 more resumes today, and convinced my local tobacco store that I am serious about working there. I think the next time they have an opening, I’ll get a call! Even working part-time at minimum wage will be better than what I’m doing now. Bonus: I can smoke while I work there! I know, I know, I should quit. Not gonna’ happen anytime soon.

Snoopy's avatar

@Bri_L Good luck w/ the job (I have to tell you when I read your name I pronounce it in my head as “brie”, like the cheese)
Wisconsin? Cheese? Sounds yummy.

@Augustlan Great job on the room!!! Ours is progressing as well…about 2/3 of walls are up…..After that the ceiling.

Jeruba's avatar

@Bri_L, so glad to hear from you! Thanks for checking in. You are doing great at staying with the program. Good luck winning the hearts of the cheesists.

@augustlan, great going. Rooting for you all the way.

augustlan's avatar

Oooh… I finally did my taxes! Good news is we’re getting a nice refund. Bad news is my efile attempt was rejected so I have to file by snail mail. It can take 8 weeks to get the refund that way. :(

Jeruba's avatar

===================== SUNDAY, 4/5/09 ======================

Dog's avatar

Thank you Jeruba for starting us today!

Let’s see. I sold two paintings this week but painted nothing. I have 5 days to paint three paintings so I must use dicipline.

I lost the mural commission but in truth it was a relief as I was getting overwhelmed.

How about you all?

Snoopy's avatar

I may have lost a pound. If I exhale and stand precariously teetering on the edge of the scale. Just kidding. Sort of. I had a business meeting on TH and although I tried to compensate (no booze, no appetizers, two bites (literally) of dessert—), fresh rolls, filet mignon and garlic butter apparently isn’t the best on a diet.
But it was free. And delicious.

In the end? Worth it.
:)

Jeruba's avatar

My attention this week has been focused on gathering info. for taxes (congratulations, @augustlan)! and not on much else, so I don’t have any significant accomplishments to report.

I did write a preface and epilogue for my little collection of memoirs, which is now at 50 pages, and gather them into a booklet that looks like a keeper. I’m making two copies, as usual, so later on there’ll be one for each of my children.

Here’s a curious thing—another bug in the interface? I typed ”(congratulations, @augustlan!)” with the exclamation inside the parens, and down in the live preview it appears with the exclamation outside the parens, like this: (congratulations, @augustlan)! What kind of bug is that??

Introverted_Leo's avatar

<is in heaven listening to Enrique Granados played on cello> ^_^ Anyways…

@augustlan & @Jeruba: nice job on the taxes and memoir additions and @Dog with selling more paintings!

Bad news from IKEA: not enough time to sponsor me. They said they needed “at least 4–6 months advanced notice for this kind of stuff.” o_O Well, at least now I know. : / Yeah, so I won’t being doing the competition this year. But next year I’ll be more prepared, heh.

As for my story, I managed to write an introduction/preface of sorts that I think will help establish a base for some much needed focus in my story. I’ve gotten ahead of myself by writing a random 3,800 word portion of a chapter…but I’m trying to finish a new outline before I get any further.

This music I’m listening to is giving me a lot of ideas! It’s gonna be hard not to jump ahead without doing some planning first—I’m easily distracted and impatient, lol.

seekingwolf's avatar

No weight lost. :( Eh, I don’t know. I ate a lot this week…not like overeat, but more than I usually eat because I’ve been working out more than usual and I was STARVED. But I didn’t gain…

I think I’m going to step up my workout routine. I’ve noticed that I am more fit now and it takes a lot more to get my heart rate up to where I want it (~170 consistently). I used to get it at 170 with the routine, but now it’s teetering somewhere between 155–160…and I haven’t done anything differently!

What do you guys think? I think I’m going to change my routine so it’s harder.

otherwise I’ve been fine…except my mom forgot to send me my birth control pills so I am like a BEAR now…acne everywhere, bloated, aches pains, and I can’t stop sweating. PCOS sucks and I’m kind of miffed at her for forgetting because I feel yucky.

seekingwolf's avatar

Oh this is how I test my fitness: usually every week, I have some paper due to a professor who is on the top floor of a building on the opposite, god-forsaken side of campus that nobody even bothers going to..I literally run that way every Friday because I’m usually late.

Usually I’m out of breath and stuff but this week, after I left the building…I wasn’t breathing hard at all. A little sweaty sure, but I wasn’t winded! w00t!

Introverted_Leo's avatar

@seekingwolf: Oh man, that sounds sucky. : ( I hope you get your pills soon. But that’s great having a fitness test, as you call it. That must have felt really good when you realized you weren’t winded when you reached the top!

Heck, I can’t run up the stairs in my house without getting a little winded, haha. I keep saying I’m gonna go bike-riding more to get more exercise, but meh. I’m lazy that way.

augustlan's avatar

@Dog You’re selling things left and right! Good deal :)
@Snoopy Free gourmet food sounds like a good week to me. Yummy!
@Jeruba Why do we wait so long to do the damn taxes? Every year I say I’m going to do better next year, but I never do. Good job on finishing up the memoir project. Your kids will appreciate all the effort that went into writing and binding them.
@Introverted_Leo Too bad about the contest… but like you say, you’ll be better prepared next year. That preface idea, along with your outline, should help you get a better grasp on your story. Keep up the good work!
@seekingwolf Remember, muscle weighs more than fat. While you are getting fitter, your scale might not reflect it, but that’s ok. It’s how you feel that matters… and you feel more fit. That’s fantastic! I agree with your idea to step up the intensity of your workout, but make sure you don’t overdo it. Wouldn’t want you to get burned out. :)

I finally started painting the man-cave. I got two coats of tinted primer up on the walls (except the paneled one, which I’m leaving in its natural state). I started cutting in with the actual color today. I wanted to have two coats of that done by the end of the night, but I only got one and a half finished before my body couldn’t take it anymore. The Fibromyalgia has reared it’s ugly head, and I’m in a lot of pain. :( I figure I’ll be better by Wednesday, and hope to finish it off then.

Bri_L's avatar

@Dog – You also helped me out with those links!

@Snoopy – No doubt worth it. Besides, if you look at losing weight at a lifestyle change then you can indulge every now and then

@Jeruba – Taxes can be taxing and full of strange sin-tax! It always feels good to be done with them.

@ Introverted_Leo – Sorry to hear about the contest but glad it didn’t turn you off of next year. And way to go with the writing!

@ seekingwolf – what augustlan said is right. And also remember that you will burn fat more efficiently with those work outs as well.

@ augustlan – I am so living vicariously through you. My man-cave looks and feels like a cave. Sorry to hear about your Fibromyalgia. Hang in there.

As for me, I further tweaked my resume. Started on setting up my portfolio for my website (thank you Dog) and have found a few sites I might be able to use as well (thanks again Dog).

This week is turning out to be a wash because my wife is sick.

Dog's avatar

@Bri_L Glad to help. Love your work and cannot wait to see your greeting card line as it develops! Hope your wife feels better too.

@Snoopy – Good job on balancing on a scale! I admire your ability to NOT have wine!

@Jeruba – I bet it is a relief to have the taxes over. BLAH!

@Introverted_Leo – Perhaps it is a blessing about Ikea? Sort of how it was a good thing I lost the mural? Now you can focus on next year and really win! Great job on the writing!

@seekingwolf – Awesome on the not being as out of breath! That is really great and shows that you are indeed making progress!

@augustlan – Painting is my favorite part! Everything comes together!

I am so happy everyone is hanging in there! Do you all realize how far we have all come in these last few weeks? I for one am more focused and productive!

augustlan's avatar

Update: It’s Wednesday night/Thursday morning. I got the first coat of the final color on the walls tonight. It’ll probably need a second coat, but so far it looks good!

@Bri_L Sorry to hear that your wife is sick. Good for you though, doing all that tweaking and preparation! Is there somewhere we can see your work in the meantime?

@all This thread always brightens my day. :)

Dog's avatar

@augustlan Me too! Awesome on the first coat!

Introverted_Leo's avatar

@augustlan: sounds like it’s really coming along! What will you do after the walls are painted?

@Bri_L: yes, we’d all like to see some of your work! It sounds like good stuff!

@Dog: I wish I was feeling more focused and productive, lol. Right now I’m feeling the exact opposite! I’m such a scatter brain right now. I don’t know why, but it’s hard to stay focused on anything for too long, especially at school. My mind is everywhere except where it needs to be. I hope I can snap out of this soon. : /

Snoopy's avatar

@augustlan We are making forward progression on our basement as well, albeit very slowly.

@all A coworker said “Have you lost weight?” I had to restrain myself from embracing him This is especially satisfying as he is a body builder and does private personal training on the side….

@all As we are all learning through this exercise, as long as we can look back and see that we are further today than we were yesterday, last week, last month or even last year….we are doing fine :)

Dog's avatar

@Snoopy What your coworker said- that rocks more than the numbers on a scale! Awesome!

Bri_L's avatar

@Snoopy – very cool! that is a professional opinion he gave you!

Jeruba's avatar

===================== SUNDAY, 4/12/09 ======================

Snoopy's avatar

I have lost 10 pounds and hubbie has lost 12.

I am feeling rather overwhelmed this week….a new chore for the progress log.

We have historically been “keepers” or “savers”. What if we need this some day? We paid good money for this, we can’t get rid of it.. This is still functional….we might need it some day.

I go into my basement and feel utterly overwhelmed. At every turn there is a pile of stuff. We aren’t candidates for an Oprah episode as hoarders, but still…..

We have decreased the inflow of crap into the house. There are multiple sources. Stuff given to us, garage sales, consignement shops, sales, etc., etc. We have (believe it or not) already, over the years, rid ourselves of a ton of stuff…But still there is more….and it is depressing.

I have read mutliple books about organizing and purging. They have helped….

I donate, sell, and throw away. Just today I unearthed two old pair of eyeglasses. Why oh why did I keep them. Luckily I found that I can donate them for refurbishment for someone who can use them. Kids clothing, books and furniture are on the hit list.

Does anyone else have this “too much crap” problem?

Maybe this should be a separate question…?

Introverted_Leo's avatar

@Snoopy: nice job! That’s good to hear that the both of you are making progress.

About the “too much crap” problem, I can’t say I do have a whole lot of that going on (my mom’s a neat-freak : / ). If I were on my own, I’d probably have “neat piles of stuff” all over the place. Eventually I’d probably just start throwing stuff out, but I’m just too lazy to go through stuff unless I absolutely have to.

As for my progress, idk. I’m brainstorming, a lot, and doing some critical thinking for my story. No actual writing for now. I realize there’s more things I need to nail down before I do that.

Other than that, there isn’t a whole lot of progress going on elsewhere, nothing I feel like mentioning. I’m getting through school (I can’t wait ‘til I’m done!). Still, two more years of that. Seems like it’ll never end, but then when it does I’ll probably be wishing I was still in it, haha. Oh, but I did get registered for classes through two of the three colleges/universities I’ll be enrolled at simultaneously for next semester—what fun! (Ha, not.)

Dog's avatar

@Snoopy Great on the 10lbs. Yeah- I have the crap problem cause of the kids more than anything. With kids it is easier to say “what if they will want it/need it when they get older?”
Great goal!!!

@Introverted_Leo Brainstorming is good. College is so time consuming and I was in two colleges at once for a while are they far away from one another? I put over 120k miles on my car during college.

I have little progress to report. I have been working on images for display still and had a person ask me about the availability of a painting I have yet to finish.

To be perfectly honest I think I need to force myself into walking or running to fire up my brain and motivation.

Snoopy's avatar

@Introverted_Leo I remember wanting to be out of school…the one thing it does give you that you may be taking for granted is….structure. (—I know I took it for granted). What I mean to say is….you know what you will be doing for the next two years. There is some benefit to that….

@all I am happy to report that I just returned from a family who-ha and was able to pawn some of my crap off on to others who will actually use and enjoy the stuff…..some fiction books, bags, craft crap…..with eager commitments to take more.

Dog's avatar

@Snoopy AWESOME! You are off to a running start!

Introverted_Leo's avatar

@Dog: oh no, the two are basically on the same campus (both about 40 min. from where I live), but the third I’m enrolled in doing online classes. It was just kinda…different going through all their processing. I still gotta fax one school my driver’s license info so they don’t charge me out-of-state tuition. o_O

And I, too, could use a new motivation factor. I thirve best off do-or-die situations actually, haha. Or more milder versions of it, at least. (Some of my greatest work is stuff I was crunched for time to finish.) Even though I don’t particularly like it, I need the pressure to keep me from getting too lazy. My internal clock runs slower than most of society’s…

@Snoopy: yeah, good point. : )

augustlan's avatar

@Snoopy Great job on the weight loss and the ‘stuff’ loss! I could use a little of both, myself… especially after the meal I had today.

@Introverted_Leo Brainstorming is hard work!

@Dog Just because you haven’t finished doesn’t mean you haven’t progressed… and how cool is it that someone wants to buy a painting before you’re even done!

I finished painting the walls on Friday. It looks good! Next up, fix, apply and paint the trim, paint the ceiling.

Still no good news on the job front, but I have an idea to create my own job. Tell me what you guys think. I’d like to hire myself out as an independent contractor providing administrative support to small business. That is, businesses that can’t afford to (or don’t need to) hire a secretary or office manager as an employee, but might need someone for 3 or 10 (or whatever) hours a week to do office tasks or have a one-time big project that could use an extra set of hands. I can do everything from stuffing envelopes to business writing to payroll. I’d charge a flat hourly rate that is cheaper than a temp agency would charge. The business would save by not having to pay Social Security and Medicare taxes on my ‘salary’. I figure if I could get enough of these little jobs, it could add up to one regular job, or nearly so. Do you all think such a thing is do-able?

Snoopy's avatar

@augustlan I definitely think it is doable. Do you have a company in mind who may use your services? Or are you going to be “cold calling” all potential clients?

Remember too that they would also not have to pay healthcare.

If you do get this going, keep in mind that you will have to pay quarterly estimated taxes on your earnings, in case you didn’t know that already…..

Dog's avatar

@augustlan I do think it is doable and smart! Also there is no need for benefits and that would be an attractive incentive for business. Great Idea!

Off to finish the painting.

Oh- I may not be on Fluther much this week. I really need to focus on the work piling up in my studio. I will be checking in here though. :)

seekingwolf's avatar

@Snoopy

Awesome with the weight loss! How long did it take to lose the 10 lbs? Still, that is extremely impressive and I’m a little envious, I’ll admit :D

I lost 1.5 pounds this week and I’m really glad!
I’ve discovered GRAPEFRUIT. I think it suppresses my appetite. It’s very odd, but I still eat it anyway with lots of Splenda because it tastes good and it’s a nice break from bananas and apples all the time hehe.

Dog's avatar

@seekingwolf Awesome on the 1.5 lb loss!

Snoopy's avatar

@seekingwolf I have lost the 10 lbs over 11 weeks (I think I miscalculated in an earlier post….but this is where I am today). It has been a struggle. A two steps forward, one step back kinda thing….

My husband has lost his 12 lbs over 5 weeks.

I am happy w/ where I am so far. Neither of us have a particular number or goal in mind, which takes a lot of the pressure off…...we are just trying to do better.

My big weakness is snacking. Especially at night. I am focusing on 1) trying not to snack and 2) if I do, to try and eat fruit, popcorn and the like….

And I drink tea. Lots and lots of tea….

Grapefruit? Ugh. Not for me….One of the few fruits I don’t like…..

How much weight have you lost overall? If you mess up as I have, don’t beat yourself up too much….just try and figure out why and correct…..

Anyone can lose weight quickly. The trick is get in to habits that you can maintain. You shouldn’t deny yourself all treats. That isn’t fair and you are unlikely to be able to do it in perpetuity. Small incremental changes do add up over time.

seekingwolf's avatar

@Snoopy

Well the time span isn’t really a big deal…I think I read that if you lose weight like 1 pound a week, you’re more likely to to keep it off than doing 2/2.5 per week…that’s just too much for the long term. At any rate, good job!! :D

Do you have any advice for how to lose weight, like what has worked for you? I’m always on the lookout for advice.

I agree, snacking can be difficult. I used to have problems but now that I’m on the Metformin, my appetite has decreased.

What has helped me is a lot of nice cold water! I like filtered water so I got a Brita filter pitcher and I drink from it a lot. Sometimes when you’re thirsty, you feel hungry instead and then you eat, so drinking plenty will help avoid this. Plus I just feel better when I drink more.

Snoopy's avatar

@seekingwolf I can’t remember if I sent you this link already (forgive me if I did—)

http://www.fluther.com/disc/41209/im-having-trouble-sticking-to-my-diet-is-there-any-easier/#quip530042

Some of the big things I do that have helped:

*Cut where it doesn’t hurt. i.e cut things you (personally) really won’t miss: skim instead of whole milk, diet instead of regular pop, low fat mayo and salad dressings instead of regular, hamburger w/out the bun, etc.

*I allow unlimited fresh fruits and plain, steamed veggies in any give meal.

*When snacking, choose wisely. Fruits, pretzels, popcorn, dried fruits, etc.

*Eat consciously. I don’t sit w/ an open bag of dried fruits in front of the tv. I get a bowl, a portion and eat. If I want more, I am aware of it….no mindless eating or snacking. i.e. I do this w/ meals too. I start off w/ a scoop of whatever and go back for more if I am really hungry.

*I drink lots of water and tea. It is filling.

*I have to be really, really hungry before I allow myself to snack…..and if it is close to a meal (like 90 minutes or less), I suck it up and don’t snack.

*All fats are not evil. They are filling and you do need fat in your diet. (Some make the mistake of cutting or severely elimintating all fats…..unfortunately they then sometimes overeat lowfat stuff…..as they aren’t as filling…., so they haven’t really done anything to help themselves….)

*I get off of my butt and try to move on occasion. This may include just paddling around in the pool w/ my kids….but hey, it is more exercise than I was getting 6 months ago.

*I weigh myself. Everyday. Multiple times a day, actually. A little obsessive, but it keeps me on task.

Jeruba's avatar

Well, I haven’t been much of a cheerleader this week, but I do admire and congratulate you on all your progress.

@Snoopy and @seekingwolf, great work on the weight loss! Wonderful to see your efforts paying off.
@Snoopy, I am there with you on the too-much-stuff problem. Want to make a side project of that?
@Introverted_Leo, I am a bit bogged down too, so I sympathize. Brain work is real work, though, don’t forget.
@Dog, you are still moving forward. Some progress is better than no progress. Good for you. How great to have a loyal and interested following!
@augustlan, that is a terrific idea! You would have to go through some steps to set up for yourself, such as getting a business license and taxpayer ID number (I think) and filing quarterly estimated returns. We have self-employed people on fluther who could help with that (post a question?). I think you have an excellent idea in that these days small businesses need versatile people and don’t want to pay for more help than they actually use. You could be a godsend! And any one such client could turn out to lead to a part-time or full-time position further down the road. Go for it! You will need some business cards and flyers, and you may have to paper the businesses in your town by going door to door with your list of skills, rates, and availability, but that could really pay off for you. Good luck!

I don’t have much to report. I am feeling like a slug right now. I did polish my ten memorial essays and gather them under one cover with an explanatory preface, a summing-up epilogue, and a detailed set of notes on all the pictures, and I will send a copy to my siblings. I also see it as a legacy for my own kids. It’s just a tip-of-the-iceberg sort of thing, but like our progress, it’s something. It isn’t nothing.

seekingwolf's avatar

@Snoopy

thanks so much for that advice! I agree with all of it and am going to try some new things that I haven’t yet.

I wish I could have unlimited fruits but I can’t. :( Because I’m insulin resistant, I gotta watch my sugar intake and that includes fruits. However, fruit is still a staple in moderate amounts and boy do I like it!

Speaking of weight loss I’m going to the gym in 20 min :)

Dog's avatar

@jeruba- awesome on getting the little touches done!

augustlan's avatar

@Jeruba It is something! Sometimes, all we can do is take baby steps… and that’s ok. :)
I’m feeling like a slug myself. It’s rainy and gray here, which certainly isn’t helping my mood. About an hour ago, I opened every shade, turned on every light, and tuned in to my favorite rock radio station just to get a little spring in my step. It helped me face the mountain of dishes left from Easter. It was like a battle had occurred in the kitchen! Now, it’s peaceful and serene in there.

Thanks for the advice and tips on my business idea, everyone. I’m in the research phase right now, and I’ll let you know when (if?) I get past that.

Snoopy's avatar

@augustlan & Jeruba You do not need a different tax ID. You can just use your own SS #. The only reason you might need to get a separate number is if you were to set up an LLC, etc which is not necessary.

@SeekingWolf Yes, the DM is something that I don’t fortunately have to deal w/ and would certainly complicate food choices. Hopefully you will find that your DM will be easier to control/maintain w/ your weight loss. Keep it up :)

@Jeruba. I am happy to report that I got rid of a 3×4 foot dry erase board to my kids’ preschool today. They were thrilled to get it…..I also took 3 bags of kids stuff to a kid charity resale store. I have targeted a few blankets for consideration of elimination. I am familiar w/ an independent living facility that deals w/ poor seniors that is on the look out for this type of stuff….

seekingwolf's avatar

@Snoopy

DM = Diabetes? I don’t have that and I hopefully won’t get it!

I have insulin resistance because of my PCOS. I’m on medication and when I lose weight, the insulin resistance will go down even more.

Snoopy's avatar

@seekingwolf Oh duh! I knew that you had PCOS! I am so sorry…. I flaked out there for a bit.

(yes, DM = Diabetes Mellitus)

Bri_L's avatar

@Snoopy and @seekingwolf, holly WOW! That is fantastic the both of you!

@Introverted_Leo, I consider every day surviving school an achievement in itself!

@Dog, progress is progress! And any interest from buyers in todays economy is awesome though not surprising given your work!

@augustlan, you rule! The greatest number of successes I have heard about in my weekly meetings are about just that. People who created their own way!

@Jeruba, it most certainly is something. Don’t forget that!

I filed for unemployment. Finished applying for Badger Care Health Insurance. Updated my Linked-In account, added another job search engine to my batch and started getting stuff together for my site.

I am now getting back on my med’s which will once again get rid of these crippling panic attacks I have. I had to stop all my meds because I couldn’t afford refills without insurance.

augustlan's avatar

@Bri_L I’m glad you’re getting your health insurance sorted out… I’m in the same boat! Luckily, my docs have been very helpful, giving me samples whenever they can. That has really saved me. You’re doing all the right things, and I sure hope some of it comes through for you. :)

Dog's avatar

@Bri_L what you did this week was a big achievement. Kudos to you for tackling the red tape (the very thought of which overwhelms me) and getting the benefits. It is great that you are taking care of your health as I am sure your stress levels are unhealthy right now.

Your work will take off and a
great job is forthcomeing. You have the talent and your portfolio will really showcase your work.

Snoopy's avatar

@Bri_L & Augustlan I am not sure how to qualify, but Walgreens drug store clinics are offering free health care to those who have suffered a job loss. FYI.

seekingwolf's avatar

@Bri_L

I wish you the best of luck! :)

I was about to mention the Walgreens clinic but Snoopy beat me to it!
If you use Sprint as your wireless carrier, they will pay your phone bill for up to 3 months when you’re let go from your job.

Introverted_Leo's avatar

I can’t really add much else, lol, so lurve to @Bri_L. ^_^

Dog's avatar

Hey @seekingwolf & @Snoopy I just found this site- it is FREE and the more I explore it the more awesome it is! I am setting a goal for more exercise for myself and drinking more water. The support on this site is incredible.

Disregard if you have already discovered said site. :)

Snoopy's avatar

@Dog I had seen someone else recommend that site as well….please let us know what you think of it!

Dog's avatar

@Snoopy From what I have explored so far I think I love it! I used to pay $29. a month to be on WW online and this has everything ww has plus a lot more for free. Plus it is easier to navigate and faster than WW

It has a diet plan
food tracker
iphone app
challenges
There is a lot more but I am going to walk for 15 minutes so I can log it then I will maybe explore more.

But best of all it has a very very positive community and a LOT of success stories.
Oh yeah- and did I mention it was FREE? (I love saying that!)

Snoopy's avatar

@Dog oooooh. I just got chills. Lurve for free :)

seekingwolf's avatar

@Dog

Thanks so much for mentioning this!
I’ve been looking for an online support weight loss group with tools…not WW though cause I don’t have 30/month to spend :(

Thanks again!!!

Bri_L's avatar

Thanks gang!

Jeruba's avatar

===================== SUNDAY, 4/19/09 ======================

augustlan's avatar

My husband got a job! His old boss called and asked him to come back, but can’t afford to pay him what he was making. It means a $15,000/year paycut, but comes with a company truck, cell phone and (most importantly) health insurance. He starts back Monday morning. :D

I’ve been researching the average hourly rates for Administrative Assistants in my area, and average temp rates for the same work. I figure I’ll need to price my services somewhere between the two. I’ve started a rough draft for a brochure, and am trying on business names for size. That reminds me, I need to post a few Qs about this.

Snoopy's avatar

@augustlan AWESOME!!!! Congrats to your family on your husband getting his old job back.

Keep up the research on your job!

Neither of us lost any weight this week boooooooo.
On a positive note, we didn’t gain any either :)

I had only a couple of pairs of work pants that fit (which prompted me to really try to start losing weight in the first place—) and they were both in the wash. Out of desperation I tried on some pants that I knew were probably still too small….only they weren’t—they fit!!!

Additionally, I needed to wear shorts yesterday. The shorts I wore last summer were waaaaaay to large and I had to dig to find the smaller sizes that fit great….and I couldn’t even come close to wearing them last summer.

No weight loss….but still a good week :)

augustlan's avatar

@Snoopy Clothes do tell the tale, don’t they? They’re often more reliable indicators than the scale! Yay. :)

Jeruba's avatar

@augustlan, what terrific news! That is such a relief. Hurray! And you are still working toward setting up your own business. Great progress!

@Snoopy, that must have felt great! Good for you. And not gaining does count.

@Bri_L, I missed congratulating you on your progress last week. Thanks for checking back in.

I am still feeling like a slug, dull and lethargic, and I am starting to think it may correlate to a new medication I am taking. I am trying to figure out how to assess my rather complex meds in relation to one another in a personalized way (not just through Drugs.com) that helps me figure out if interactions are causing me problems. I don’t expect to have the energy of a 30-year-old, but I am on a downturn that I don’t like.

Still, I did pick up again with my narrative and made a little progress. Maybe next week I’ll have some numbers to post.

Snoopy's avatar

Jeruba Hopefully you can talk w/ your internist or pharmacist to give you clues about possible medication issues.

Perhaps you have a medication from a specialist that is interacting w/ one of your “regular” drugs or something over-the-couner? Perhaps there is a medication that has been added that might cause you to feel sleepy that could be switched to being taken at night?

Hang in there….

Introverted_Leo's avatar

@augustlan: wow! That’s great news with your husband! And it sounds like the plans for your new job are coming along. Keep up the great work!

@snoopy: that must have been a great feeling! Good to hear. : )

@Jeruba: I hope you’re able to find out what’s causing the lethargy. That doesn’t sound like fun. And good to hear that you’re still keeping at your narrative!

I’ve probably made some progress here or there on stuff, but nothing really sticks out. I’m just trying to keep at my school work mostly. I am writing in my story journal, but still no actual writing for now. We’ll see how that comes along.

seekingwolf's avatar

I gained 1.5 lbs. WHAT??!

I have no idea what’s going on. However, my legs are more toned now that I’ve been working out faithfully every day (except for last time – but it was because I jogged 2 miles to a cemetery with a friend @ 9 pm and then we both got SOOO spooked we ran back! haha)

Anyway, I’ve been eating well and working out. I know I’ve been eating well because when I went out to dinner and treated myself to a ground-steak sandwich and a salad. The sandwich literally “sat” in my tummy for hours and I felt so heavy. :( I don’t eat like that at all…so why did I gain weight?

My father says it’s because I’m gaining muscle.

I’m just really upset because my tummy fat hasn’t decreased yet. That’s what I want to get rid of first because it’s VERY bad to have lots of tummy fat and it’s the worst kind…I really don’t want to get diabetes! Why must it all settle there? I’m so apple-shaped.

Oh, and I’m drinking TONS of water, like 4 20 oz bottles a day. I feel odd if I don’t drink that now, so that’s a good sign, right?

Snoopy's avatar

@seekingwolf

Muscle weighs more than fat.

I don’t know what your weight is (or was) or what your BMI is (or was). If you are getting more toned….that is what I would focus on….keep up the good work :)

augustlan's avatar

@Jeruba I’m sorry you’re feeling so bad! I hope you get your situation sorted out soon… it sucks to feel like that. It’s good that you’re still working anyway!

@Introverted_Leo Sometimes slow and steady does win the race. It’s all forward momentum!

@seekingwolf Snoopy’s right, muscle weighs more than fat. It sounds like you’re doing great with your eating and exercise routines… keep up the good work! Oh, and that belly fat can be so stubborn! I usually lose weight everywhere else first. :(
I love that you and a friend jogged to a cemetery, but ran back!

seekingwolf's avatar

Aww thanks guys! I’m just going to keep it up I guess. I’m feelng a lot better now that I’m more fit.

Introverted_Leo's avatar

Keep at it, @seekingwolf! From the sound of things, it seems you’re doing a fantastic job, regardless of what the scale says. ^_^

Dog's avatar

I was waiting to post my progress because I could not bear to post nothing for another week. So I shut off fluther and other distractions for the most part and finally put in the hours it would take to create my New York exhibit and ordered it.

For the first time ever I am not sweating out at the last minute. I will actually be able to relax and create new art for the show because the panels are all done.

@Snoopy AWESOME!!! WOW! That must feel great to be in clothes that were too small before! Bravo!

@augustlan Great News about your husband. We have taken a large cut in the last 2 years and just having a job right now is a wonderful thing. How are you doing on your planning now for your work? I do recommend you make a web site. Are you on a mac or pc?

@Jeruba Here is hoping that you are feeling better by next check in! It is good you are taking the incentive to investigate.

@Introverted_Leo School is hard work in itself. You are doing great just keeping focused through classes.

@seekingwolf Muscle does weigh more than fat and also helps burn fat. I think you are doing fantastic!

Snoopy's avatar

@Dog Great job at being proactive…...often a difficult hurdle to overcome :)

augustlan's avatar

@Dog Whoo! I am impressed. I wish I could be in NY to see your exhibit. Good luck!

In answer to your questions, I’m getting there :) I’m on a PC, and know nothing about making web sites but have determined that the domain name I’d like is available. I’ll have more to report on Sunday. I hope.

Dog's avatar

@augustian I have suggestions for your web site. First secure your domain name (I reccomend Godaddy- and at checkout try the promo code chill3 for a discount)

After you have your domain you can actually make a fairly decent web site out of a free blog like wordpress or blogger.

Once you have your blog-site ready have your domain name forward to the blog URL and use the masking to make the blog URL never show.

Out the door your website will cost under $10.00 :)

augustlan's avatar

@Dog Thanks for the tips. Is there any advantage to securing my domain name through Godaddy vs Google Apps? I really mean it when I say I know nothing!

Dog's avatar

@augustlan I just went to check out GoogleApps and they are more expensive than GoDaddy. GoDaddy has excellent help via phone too. You can talk to a human :)

I am looking at GoogleApps and it looks like an email client with perks? Am I right?

For what you are doing it could be overkill to pay $50.00 a year for email. Personally I would sign up for a gmail account in your business name and use that because it is reliable, easy and free.

Also when choosing a domain name be sure it does not have any periods, underscores and that it is a .com Think of how you will tell someone your url- it should be really easy to remember and spell. (and the world always assumes the .com)

Be sure when you get the domain NOT to buy any of the multitude of extra stuff they offer on the way to paying. You do not need any of it- no hosting, no privacy, no additional urls etc.

I just tested it out and using the promo code chill3 still works and drops the price from $10.69 to $7.49

augustlan's avatar

Thanks!

Bri_L's avatar

@Snoopy That is the coolest when you can slip those old jeans on. Feels great! Great job!
@augustlan Awesome to hear about your husband. I am excited to hear about your venture as well. I am doing the same thing so it is nice to have a comrade in arms. Akin to what Dog was saying about your domain name, most people will guess ”.com” if they try to find your name.
@Jeruba I feel for you. I am on 3 different meds all of which over lap and say “may cause drowsyness” I always wonder what else they are doing to me. You hang in there and don’t be afraid to ask questions and investigate.
@Introverted_Leo What Dog said. When I think back to what I had in school. Then look at what you are trying to do. Then look at what you want to do on top of that. Darned impressive. You don’t get down on yourself
@seekingwolf I can’t tell you anymore than what the others have not. Muscle does way more than fat. Your leg muscles are some of the biggest in your body. Your tummy is often the last place you lose weight. Just keep at it and know your benefitting in ways other than losing pounds.

I have a job lead. An old buddy of mine contacted me about doing 30sec to 1min video previews for self published books for that branch of Amazon.com. I am really psyched as he knows me and my work already. I posted my samples, as limited and client filtered as they are, up on Vimeo. (http://www.vimeo.com/user1642167/videos if anyone is interested). I should hear next week.

Dog's avatar

WOOT! Bri_L that would be an awesome job!!!!!

augustlan's avatar

@Bri_L Thanks for linking to your videos… very cool. Good luck on the job lead!

Snoopy's avatar

@Bri_L cool videos I totally have NO idea how to do that stuff!!!

Bri_L's avatar

@all – Thanks. I want to add all these disclaimers because there is so much I wanted to do but wasn’t allowed to by the client or my supervisor.

Introverted_Leo's avatar

@Bri_L: that’s fantastic! Good luck getting the job! And nice videos, btw.

Jeruba's avatar

================ Sunday, 4/26/2009 ===================

Dog's avatar

Good Morning Everyone!
My newest goal is to post here on the designated Sunday even if I have nothing to report which is the case for me today. Aside of a few slogans and sketches I have come up with for a series of paintings that involve chocolate I have not touched a brush to canvas.

I will have good stuff to report next week though because my spouse will be on the road which means I can selfishly wallow in my studio creating to my heart’s content without interruption.

How are you all doing?

Introverted_Leo's avatar

@Dog: sketches and slogans are good! Sounds like you’re brainstorming, getting the juices flowing.

I’ve been doing the same, in a way, with my story. I think I finally have a working plot coming along and I’m excited about the scenes I have plan so far. It seems writing in an actual paper journal helps me visualize them out before I actually write them and also keeps me from getting distracted on the internet, heh. I was having a hard time trying to meld fantasy elements with an urban industrial world. Eveything I was doing seemd so contrived and…meh. But I think I’ve found a nice balance of the two elements.

I’m gonna keep planning some more, but I’ve already written out bits and pieces of scenes I had in mind, that and a combination of regular journaling and mind mapping, which is helping me figure out the most important elements of my story and figuring out how they all relate to each other as well as finding and filling in plot holes, etc. Yeah, so we’ll see how it comes along. ^_^

But now…I have to get back into the mindset of getting my school projects done. I haven’t done any of that so far this weekend with guests coming over and whatnot. : / Only two more weeks of school but I’ve been ready for it to be over as of like a month ago, lol.

augustlan's avatar

@Dog I like the idea of posting whether we’ve made progress or not… but I’d say you have made progress. I envy you your alone time in the studio this week. Have fun!

@Introverted_Leo How exciting! I know you’ve been having trouble with your story, but it sounds like you are on the right track again. Buckle down on your school work and the next two weeks will seem to fly by. :)

Thanks to Dog’s advice, I purchased my domain name through GoDaddy at a discount! Per Dog’s and Bri L’s instructions, I got a dot com name. I also created an account on wordpress, but so far I have no idea what I’m doing. Anyway, my business name will be Creative Administrative Services or C.A.S. for short and my domain name is CreativeAdministrative.com (nothing to see there yet… just a placeholder).

Introverted_Leo's avatar

@augustlan: nice! One step at a time.

Jeruba's avatar

Great going, you three! Not all progress has visible outward manifestations. Figuring things out is a step. Setting goals is a step. @Dog and @Introverted_Leo, what you’re doing counts.

@augustlan, you in particular are out there in new territory. We’re pulling for you! (Let me know if you want a proofreader.)

I have a gain of 1685 words since last week and about 2000 since last report. I got back into my narrative this past week and passed through some rather difficult territory.

I also suddenly remembered—and found—a piece of paper I wrote about 20 years ago that actually listed the chronology of events in the period I am writing about, written back when I could still recall the sequences (and in many cases the exact dates) I’ve lately been trying to reconstruct. It turns out that I had a number of key events in the wrong order. Maybe some of my difficulties in piecing together the narrative will go away when I’ve corrected them!

augustlan's avatar

@Jeruba Good job! I can’t believe you were actually able to find a 20 year old list… I can’t even remember what (or if) I ate yesterday. I’m glad you’re getting back in the swing of things. :)

As for your offer of proofreading, I’m all for it… once I have something to show for all of this. What I really need right now is a quick course on how to design a website!

Dog's avatar

@Introverted_Leo Fantastic progress- to peck away at your goals while concentrating on school! Not easy and admirable that you are journaling and putting bits and pieces together.

@augustlan AWESOME!!! This is wonderful! I love the name!

@Jeruba What a Godsend to find that paper! And 1685 words are to be applauded!

Bri_L's avatar

@Introverted_Leo Great job. School and all that makes me dizzy.

@augustlan I also love the name! CreativeAdminitrative! I am so excited for you!!!!!!!

@Jeruba Wow, you have quite the memory my friend! I can’t even remember if wrote a paper in college. Nice find!

@Dog I love selfish wallowing!!

I got 9 computers, 4 CRTs, 2 printers, 11 keyboards, 3 mice, and 2 external hard drives up out of the basement and to the recycle center. I also cleaned off 2 desks and a drawing table. Went through 7 stacks of cd/dvd to verify what, if anything was on them. And I found the info I needed to take apart an inherited eMac and bring it back to life.

Dog's avatar

@Bri_L WOW!
You are an inspiration with your Recycling and organizing!

I need to do it- that kind of cleaning always inspires a rush of creativity!

augustlan's avatar

@Bri_L I’m so impressed! and jealous
Will you pay a visit to my basement please?

Introverted_Leo's avatar

@Jeruba: wow, what a find! Keep up the good work. : )

@Bri_L: holy moly, that’s a lot of stuff! Hey, I could use a mouse. ^_^

Dog's avatar

Hey! Where are @Snoopy? and @seekingwolf?

augustlan's avatar

Time to go on a manhunt! er, womanhunt.

Bri_L's avatar

My wife was pretty happy to.

seekingwolf's avatar

I’m here!!

Sorry I’ve been studying for finals so I’m rather scatterbrained hehehe
@Dog thanks for reminding me to come to the thread >< Things have been so hectic here!

I’ve lost like… 1/2 of a pound? I think that’s good!
My tummy feels flatter. I was able to wear a shirt that I couldn’t before (well, I could, but I hated wearing it)

The odd thing is I sweat TONS now. It’s not that I get tired or exhausted, but I’ve noticed that when I work out or I even feel a little hot, it’s like WATERWORKS. I may not even feel that hot, but it still happens. it’s so weird.

I am drinking tons and I’m not going to stop doing that because now I’m sucking down water all the time. I have to carry a bottle with me and refill it or else I feel really thirsty. I can’t quench my thirst with anything now other than water…is that odd or is that just a sign that my body is used to lots of water and doesn’t want to do without?

Otherwise, I’m doing great! I can keep my heartrate around 180 for 10–13 minutes at a time which is MUCH better than before!

Dog's avatar

@seekingwolf- How much water are you drinking per day?
Awesome on the half pound. Also on the shirt!

Snoopy's avatar

Hey….sorry all! I am here….

taking a mini-Fluther vacation on the rest of the site, however

I lost a pound. Whoo-hoo! Slow and steady.

I have a long to-do list and knocked a couple of things off of it today that have been weighing on me….I am also continue to shed stuff from my basement (good job Bri).

Keep up the good work all!

Dog's avatar

@Snoopy AWESOME!!!!
Great job on the basement progress too! See you next week!

augustlan's avatar

@seekingwolf Great job! Glad you checked in, and good luck with your finals. Have you mentioned the sweating and water craving to your doc?

@Snoopy Whoo hoo! Slow and steady wins the race. :) You and Bri should form a company… my basement could be your first job!

Introverted_Leo's avatar

@seekingwolf & @Snoopy: nice job you guys! Let’s keep at it!

Bri_L's avatar

@seekingwolf great job!!! keep it up. and drink drink drink the H2O

@Snoopy welcome to the club “get this crap out of my basement!” Good job and nice job on the weight loss!!

Snoopy's avatar

I gave away a tricyle to a neighbor and I am taking in a huge box of books to the resale store tonight (making some money is better than no money).....the purge continues!

Snoopy's avatar

@Bri_L Is this useful to you….?

Dog's avatar

Whooo hooo @Snoopy!

seekingwolf's avatar

@augustlan

I mentioned it to my mom (she’s a doc) and she said that when someone is in good cardiovascular health (and drinking more water) they tend to sweat more easily and more of it. So I guess it’s healthier.

The water craving is probably a result of me sweating more. I’m not too worried because I know I’m not pre-diabetes.

@Dog I’m drinking about eight 20 oz bottles of water now…I don’t buy it though, it always comes from my Brita filter or the drinking fountain, whichever is colder. I also drink juice in the morning and milk at lunch or dinner.

that reminds me, I need to go refill my bottle now…

Dog's avatar

@seekingwolf sounds like you are not excessive. :) High-5 for proper hydration and working out!

augustlan's avatar

@seekingwolf Awesome! You have built-in medical advice. Seems like you’ve got it all under control.

Snoopy's avatar

@Bri_L….looks like both Staples and Office Depot are both offering a similar deal…...

@Augustlan Staples’ free deal includes business cards :)

Introverted_Leo's avatar

@seekingwolf: Wow, that’s a lot of water! I wish I could drink more of it. It’s a feat for me to drink just two 20oz. bottles, heh. But I wake up every morning already feeling parched. It’s like I have to force myself to drink more water ‘cause I’ve gotten so used to not drinking a whole lot of it for so long. Got nose bleeds, felt really tired… I wonder how long it takes a person’s body to get acclimated to a big influx of water intake?

Dog's avatar

When I am drinking enough water I feel much better and even look better. Today I will put in the effort to drink water.

seekingwolf's avatar

@Introverted_Leo

It’s slow process to start drinking a lot of water. If you want to drink more, then just start with one 20 oz bottle a day and work your way up slowly…don’t force yourself! :)
Eventually, your body will start to crave it and then you’ll end up like me hehe.

I started drinking 1–3 a day when I started working out, and then it just increased naturally. I’m so used to it now and I’m starting to really enjoy the taste!

Sometimes it helps to drink Crystal Lite if you have trouble just drinking plain water. I still do it sometimes because i like their lemonade variety.

@Dog

Oh I totally agree! My acne is 10x better now that I’m taking in more water – no extra face washing or extra meds required!

Introverted_Leo's avatar

I’m more of a juice person, which may be why it’s difficult for me. I usually drink fruit smoothies, cranberry and grape juice, lemonade, etc. and usually stick with stuff that’s healthy for me, but I guess those can’t be subsitutes for water. However, like you say, Crystal Lite does have a good lemonade flavor…and I like good juice. ^_^ I’ll give it a try.

seekingwolf's avatar

@Introverted_Leo

MM I really like juices too…however I started to need to watch my sugar and then I couldn’t have them as much. Water is definitely the best choice, but you don’t have to eliminate juice. I still have some everyday. :)

Jeruba's avatar

================ Sunday, 5/3/2009 ===================

Dog's avatar

Good Morning Jeruba!

I am logging of the computer at this moment to work on my overdue Christmas painting. I will be reporting this as progress later today.

Introverted_Leo's avatar

Howdy peoples! I don’t have much to report. I am drinking more water! But I’m lagging behind with getting my projects done, lol. Then end of the semester is this Thursday, and I’m just procrastinating, so I’ve gotta gather up the willpower to just get it all done as fast as I can. And as for my story, I’m still working out the plot. It’s coming along. Taking some steps forwards as well as back, but more going forward so that’s a good thing.

Yup, so that’s all I gotta report. :D

Dog's avatar

I am painting.

The painting is of a horse being ridden by an Elf with Santa nearby.
So far the horse is done, elf is 80% done. People are not my forte.
So now I must break as it is my Mom’s birthday and I need to go get her a cake etc for a dinner party.

I cannot tell you how thrilled I will be when this painting is finished. I have been struggling with this task and so it grew in my mind from a small molehill to a mountain.

@Introverted_Leo Water is good. Progress is progress.

augustlan's avatar

I am done painting the man cave! Well, I might need to touch up a few areas… I’ll know tomorrow when I can see it all in the daylight. One giant step closer to a finished room. :)

@Introverted_Leo Good job with the water… you reminded me to go get a glass of it myself. Wake up tomorrow, throw the shades open to let in the light and get cracking on your school work. You can do it!

@Dog Sometimes starting is the hardest part, right? Sounds like you’ve made great progress on it, and you’ll be done before you know it! I’d love to see it when you’re finished.

Dog's avatar

@augustlan WOW! Can we see progress on the man cave? I bet it is looking incredible!
Did you make any progress on the business?

I forgot to mention that the posters arrived for my art exhibition in NY and they look awesome. I taped the backs (packing tape- this way the sticky squares to hang them will come off easy without damaging the posters) and put them in the tube so they are ready to go. Usually I tape them at the show but this year set up is going to be fast so I can go walk the city and people watch. :)

I also renewed my DBA (doing business as fictitious name statement)

So I did make some progress this week. I will work on the dumb elf painting this morning and will post pix of it when done. :)

seekingwolf's avatar

No weight lost this week. sigh

I’m still drinking my water like mad but I wasn’t able to work out that much this week cause I have finals and I’m studying a LOT. It’s just very stressful.

I am proud to say that I am not “stress eating” and my eating habits have remained the same!

Dog's avatar

@seekingwolf – Kudos for not giving in to the stress eating. I consider this a huge victory as you are holding your ground.

May finals be smooth and may you have total recall!

Bri_L's avatar

Ah scholastic ones, don’t be to hard on yourselves. You will look back and be amazed at what you accomplished.

@Dog – Paint like the wind! Hehe. I am impressed however. Your good enough to paint an elf such that his intelligence is apparent.

@augustlan – you go! I really love hearing about it! It keeps me going on mine. I threw out more pieces of stuff this week. and I am fixing and old emac. Yesterday, disassemble and order parts. Soon, reassemble and repurpose. It will hold all our families pictures and video, all of which is backed up on dvd and tape elsewhere.

I also applied for another job. and edited two short videos for the library group I go to.

Oh I also went and gathered a ton more work for my web site and organized it. I hope to have it up this week.

@ jeruba – Hope all is well.

Dog's avatar

@Bri_L Awesome!
When you get the site hopping drop us a link please!

augustlan's avatar

@seekingwolf Be proud that you are maintaining during a very stressful time! That’s usually when I’d fall apart, and let everything go to hell. You’re not doing that, so yay!

@Bri_L Wow, you’ve been busy! Good work, man.

@all I was offered two jobs yesterday! But, I had to turn them both down. :(
One involved heavy lifting (which I can’t do for medical reasons) and the other required working every weekend. Since I only have my kids with me every other weekend, that was a no-go. Anyway, it gives me hope that maybe things are turning around!

I have not made any progress on my business in the last week. I’ve sort of put it on the back burner to conserve my energy so I can finish the room. I’d like to get it done this week. All that’s left is to put up crown molding and trim out the paneled wall. Oh, and replace the light fixture. Shit. Since the wiring is antique ‘knob and tube’, I can’t do that myself… have to get an electrician for that one.

Dog's avatar

@ALL: I am hearing rumblings in the art industry that the recession is lightening up and may be over by the end of the year.

Here is to thinking positive and increased income for all!

Dog's avatar

@augustlan The work will come! Perhaps an electrician will barter :)
Do you live in an antique home?

augustlan's avatar

@Dog Well, an old home at least! It was built in 1929 (or 1931… I can never remember)... and still has all it’s original moldings, and even it’s clawfoot tub. The wiring is a definite throwback to a different, far more dangerous time. ;)

Dog's avatar

@augustlan Ohhh I have major house- lust! I adore vintage homes! Pix when done please. :)

Introverted_Leo's avatar

@Dog: hey, people are tough to draw/paint. Sounds challenging! When is your exhibition again?

@augustlan: yay for finishing with the painting! I can’t wait to see it when it’s done. ^_^

@seekingwolf: hey, stay in there, SW. I’m with you with the finals. Suckiest week of the year, haha. (I’m totally cramming in last-minute stuff right now.)

Oh, I got some (potentially) good news today! I asked one of my professors if he had any job or internship opportunities and he told me he just recieved one today. I’ve got an interview to work as a design assistant with a woman who runs her own interior design business. Since I’m just looking for something that pays and is within the field of interior design, this is good news. I’ll get some experience and hopefully develop some contacts within the field. And it’s part time, but if I get the job I’ll definately push for more hours. (I’ve got tuition to pay for!)

Meh, back to the impossible task of studying & finishing those 2 projects that are due on Thursday… : /

Jeruba's avatar

Here I am, the lagger. I’m still having a bit of a struggle, physically as well as mentally. Both affect my energy level and motivation.

I did transcribe that old found record of about 5 years of personal melodrama onto the computer, and in so doing I saw, or think I saw, a telling pattern…just below the surface…something that wants to come out but I can’t quite discern yet. It feels like one of those life truths that people are always confronting dramatically in novels and movies. Rarely in life do they really come in a big climactic scene with tears and fireworks. This one might come while I sit alone staring at my computer screen. There is something there. I just don’t quite see it yet. If you don’t know the truth, how can you tell it?

I’ve read all your postings above and am excited to hear everybody’s progress. Those who are going through finals—that IS an accomplishment, the end of an academic year and a milestone. It definitely counts. I am proud of us. Sorry I’m not posting bigger accomplishments myself at this point.

Introverted_Leo's avatar

Thanks for the encouragements, @Jeruba. I hope you find that truth you’re looking for!

Dog's avatar

@Introverted_Leo Awesome on the internship opening! May you get it!

@Jeruba Great job finding the record to transcribe. It will be interesting to see what comes forth this week.

augustlan's avatar

@Jeruba Remember your own words “Some progress is better than no progress!” We’re pulling for you, friend. :)

Jeruba's avatar

================ Sunday, 5/10/2009 ================

At least I do still make it here faithfully just after midnight as Saturday becomes Sunday.

No significant progress to report this week, but I am here just the same and sending you all cheers, hugs, consolations, and encouragements to be applied as needed.

Dog's avatar

I made progress. However it was not on the elf painting. I pulled out a painting that has been unfinished for over a year and finished it. Happily it sold a couple of hours later.

I ordered more stuff for NY exhibit and feel pretty confident that I will be ready for my flight on Friday.

@Jeruba the muse is just re-energizing. :) Now is a good time to pause and look back and see how far you have come- it is incredibly impressive!

Introverted_Leo's avatar

@Dog: way to go with finishing an old painting!

I’m with @Jeruba with not having any significant progress to report, but I got all my big finals out of the way. That’s a big relief. Now I just need to finish one last one and score big with my interview later in the week. That would just make my week. And I’m still fiddlin’ around with my story. About as far as I ever am on it—somewhere between the beginning and end.

Dog's avatar

@Introverted_Leo Hoorrrayyy! Time to celebrate the finals being OVER! Way to go!

@augustlan and @Bri_L I have some interesting new things to do for networking via internet for business. The charity group I work for has a blog. I got them a twitter account and set up the blog feeds to automatically post to the twitter account. Then I set up live feeds from the twitter account to post to a myspace page and facebook page :) Three birds with one stone!

augustlan's avatar

@Jeruba I feel your pain, girly. We’ll do better soon, right?

@Dog You sold a year old painting just hours after finishing it? Good deal! Also, good luck with your exhibit. :)

@Introverted_Leo You must feel so relieved to have most of your finals behind you! Good luck on your last one, and your interview!

@Dog (again) What a smart cookie you are… blog to twitter to myspace & facebook. Brilliant!

I made no progress whatsoever this week. Not on the room, not on the business. It was just a down week in general, I guess. Sunday was the first day it hasn’t rained in 10 days and gloomy weather really does a number on me. :(

Here’s hoping next week is better!

Dog's avatar

@augustlan Next week will indeed be better!

Bri_L's avatar

@Jeruba – I have those weeks to. Hang in there.
@ Inroverted_Leo – Your hitting the home stretch! Stay focused! Good luck!
@ Dog – VERY cool! I got my email update about your stuff. I have to go look. Congrats on finishing the painting.
@ augustlan – The key here is to quit. Wait…. let me check my notes here.. NO.. the key is to just move on and get back in the game. Sorry, wrong notes. Hehe.

I didn’t get the book video ad job. They are not asking me to bid on it. I have not lost hope though. I have never heard of a single agency that can specialize in every topic in the library. That is what they are going to ask this company to do. They will need more than a few poney’s in their stable.

Inspired by auguslan and assisted by my brother I own www.creativecheddar.com Now I am working on getting something up there.

Dog's avatar

@Bri_L Awesome name! Creativecheddar is so easy to remember and so fun.
Big things are coming your way!

Introverted_Leo's avatar

Oh, I can’t see the site…it’s isn’t working for me. :( I bet it’s cool though!

Good-ish news: my interview seemed to go really well. (The woman was impressed that an interior design student was capable of pulling off a 4.0 in school, haha! Among other things…) I’ll know for sure by Friday whether I got the job or not, though.

Dog's avatar

@Intoverted_Leo Bravo!

seekingwolf's avatar

I’ve lost 2 pounds this week! YAY! I hope I can keep it off!

Now that I’m home, I have time to work on being healthier. I downloaded a free app to my iPod Touch called “Lose it!” and it basically allows you to track your calories…you can even “look up” foods with it!

I’ve been on a 1,100 cal/day diet with 2 hours of exercise each day (at the gym and brisk walking), plus 3 one-hour weight lifting classes a week. I feel very healthy already!

(although today I could only work out for 45 min because I almost passed out – I only had an apple for breakfast since I didn’t feel hungry and caused problems!)

I’m still learning I guess hehe

Oh, I also talked to my dad (a doc) because you know, we all get cravings when we diet and I want to prevent mine, or at least lessen them. I feel that many craving are psychological, at least with me. I am going up on the dosage of one of my current meds…according to dad, it may decrease my appetite but it will surely stop and/or lessen psychological cravings, which is what I want.

Very exciting!

Dog's avatar

@seekingwolf You are making amazing strides! Your willpower is incredible!

augustlan's avatar

@Bri_L Ha! Thanks for making me laugh. :) I love the name of your site… when it’s up, please share it again!

@Introverted_Leo Sounds like you had a great interview. I’ll keep my fingers crossed for you!

@seekingwolf Wow, girl. That is a lot of exercise! I’m very impressed with your will and your weight-loss this week!

Jeruba's avatar

================ Sunday, 5/17/2009 ================

Checking in early. I’m on the East Coast and my computer is still on West Coast time.

I have done nothing this week but get ready to travel and then travel and be here in the Northeast. But I can report that all my travel arrangements were sound and everything has gone smoothly and beautifully, apart from the misery of actually flying jammed in tight on a full plane. That’s a successful result of no trivial effort. And now my son is safely and happily graduated, and the proud parents can relax (not forgetting that he doesn’t have a job).

I’m still following everyone’s reports and cheering you on. Thanks for staying with us! For me, things will be better after I get home and settle down.

Introverted_Leo's avatar

@Jeruba: nice! Congratulations on your son’s graduation! That must have been a big relief, lol.

Hm, let’s see…I don’t have much to report, at least not for real-life stuff, haha. I’m still waiting to hear back on my interview, but I’m going to give the lady a call back tomorrow if I don’t hear from her before then. And I’m starting my online summer class today…woo, what fun! (Not.) But my grandma is coming to visit us for my cousin’s high school graduation this week, so that’s exciting. (Haven’t seen her in ages.)

On another note, my plans for my story is coming along! Since I’ve basically been working on developing my own fantasy world from scratch, I went back and developed some key points in its history. Some really cool stuff developed and I feel it’s helping me shape the plot for the story I want to write.

It’s pretty neat how understanding the history of a people or nation can really get you into their mindset and understand why it is they do the things they do, why they don’t get along with certain others, etc. I finally feel that my world’s got a real tangible logic to the way it works. My magic system is making more sense, the cultures and my characters are varied and unique, and the conflicts I have planned are really intertwined and interesting (lots of espionage, secrets, “invisible” wars, etc..). I’m really loving the pre-war feel of the world and how it’s all coming together. All the important elements in it feel connected and necessary to the plot and there’s a real sense of urgency to it all, which I didn’t have before. It used to feel like it was just dragging along…

I can clearly visualize many of the events I want to happen and I haven’t even started writing the draft yet! That may not sound like great progress, but I feel that if I can see how everything unfolds and how my characters will (re)act ahead of time it will be that much easier (and a joy) to write when the time comes. Now I can say I won’t feel “blind” when I do start actually writing again, which should be pretty soon, I hope. And because I’m getting all the hard developments out of the way first, there’s plenty of room for sub-plots and minor details to emerge as I go along. I don’t have to plan the major and minor stuff simultaneously, which would be an awful lot to think about all at once!

<sighs> yeah, so that’s all. I’ll shut up now, lol.

Jeruba's avatar

@Introverted_Leo, your story progress is great news! I love that feeling of having your created world begin to feel real and the backstory to emerge convincingly in the present. I got to the point in my novel (with its alternate history) where I felt like I was remembering more than inventing. Even now, when I’ve been away from it for a while, the places and characters are as real in my mind as the memory of childhood and college.

I’m eager to hear, too, how seekingwolf is doing with her terrific weight loss program, Dog with his painting, and Bri_L and Aug in job quests and other projects. If I am going to lose my job this fiscal year, this is probably the week, while I am away on PTO or right after I get back. I honestly don’t know what I’m hoping for…guess that means I’ll be happy either way?

Bri_L's avatar

@ Jeruba – Awesome!!! Congrats on your son!

@ Introverted_Leo – “yeah, so that’s all. I’ll shut up now, lol.”????? I LOVED the explanation! I no nothing about writing and really enjoyed hearing about that. Man there is a lot to it. Great job!!

My job quest sucks. There is nothing posted in Milwaukee. All I got this week was subjected to a neighbor’s unintentional but biting none the less description of how two more connections fell into her freelance lap, one of which turned into a small job.

I am bitter and tired of not only being surrounded by people who didn’t get let go but don’t seem to get that it might not make me, someone who can’t afford to take his kids to a movie or buy them a cone, feel all that great to hear about all the shit they are doing, or all the business they fall ass-backwards into.

Thanks for listening.

augustlan's avatar

@Jeruba Congratulations on your son’s graduation. That must have been a proud moment!
@Introverted_Leo That is great progress on your story!
@Bri_L I feel your pain, brother. My husband is very unhappy being back to his old job, and the (much) lower salary is only adding insult to injury. We’ve both been applying for everything again, and hearing nothing back.

As for me, I once again made no progress towards either the room or the business. I think I finally figured out what’s been going on with me. I had switched to a different (cheaper) version of my anti-depressant/anti-anxiety meds, and I think it’s been having an effect on my system. Interestingly, just knowing that has perked me up considerably. I have dedicated myself to getting the room finished this week come hell or high water. I’m going to focus on that and nothing else at all ‘til I’m done. I think ‘one thing at a time’ is what I’ll have to follow right now, until I’m back up to full speed.

Introverted_Leo's avatar

@Bri_L: I’m keeping my fingers crossed for you in hoping you’re able to find a suitable job. Waiting for a job opportunity to come through can be frustrating, and I can only imagine this is especially true when you have a family to support as well. Don’t give up! Something’s gotta come along sonner or later.

@augustlan: it’s good to hear that you were able to pinpoint what was going on. Like you say, at least now you know and you can focus on other things that are important to you. Sounds like progress to me! Good luck with the room!

Dog's avatar

@Bri_L Vent anytime. I cannot imagine your frustration. Are you just looking within driving distance or are you considering relocation? Hang in there!

@Jeruba I too am on the east coast! Congrats on the graduation!

@Introverted_Leo great about the plot research!

@augustlan You can do it! Even if it takes little baby steps!

My update:
The New York exhibition was not as good as previous years. I had to really struggle with my emotions today as the crowds were minimal at best. I was approached by 8 companies ( previous years have garnered 20 or more) that have interest in using my images on products. Now I have to do follow up and hope that one or two become paying contracts.

I do realize it is the economy. Several prominant artists decided not to exhibit at all this year. Bieng an optimist I went ahead. While I do not regret the trip ( manhattan is great) I am very concerned that the trip will end up as a financial burden.

Just to cheer myself a bit I will say that I met the owners of a tapestry company who were a lot of fun. Another positive note was that a good friend and fellow artist had the best year of her career. Her joy is heartwarming and I am hoping to hear that her work is contracted for multiple products by the end of the year.

Jeruba's avatar

================ Sunday, 5/23/2009 ================

Thanks, the graduation and associated trip were great. I loved being in the Northeast, my native territory, and I am glad to be home with no other travel looming for a while.

@Dog, your exhibition experience is a sad reflection of the state of things, but at least it held out some promise for you. Good luck.

@augustlan, how distressing that your husband is unhappy back at work. This is another sad reflection—those of us who are trapped in unhappy jobs and those others of us who are looking hard and envying the employed, no matter how miserable they are. I wish him and you and Bri_L and everyone else a fruitful search. And good for you for sticking with that room.

@Bri_L, we have weathered some long, tough periods between jobs. I sympathize and hope you can keep your frustration from coloring the way you present yourself. That is very hard, I know. I’m still sending you good wishes.

@Introverted_Leo, is your semester over now? No luck on the job? Well, keep that story going as we root for you.

@seekingwolf, right now you are our poster girl for efforts paying off. Inspiring!

My focus at present is on another front than writing. I am facing the dire necessity of dealing with some accumulated stuff, and I am one of those people who find that a very difficult and distressing chore. In two months I have to be ready for a houseguest, and that means clearing the most cluttered room—my study. So I will put this task on my progress report for the next few weeks.

Awaiting this week’s news…

augustlan's avatar

@Jeruba I’m glad you’re back, and hope you are feeling refreshed for the task ahead of you.

I have made great progress this week, culminating in today: The man cave is clean and furnished! My girls and I spent many hours today cleaning up plaster dust, washing windows, installing light switch covers and moving all of the furniture in. It looks so good! My husband is so happy with it. :D

It’s not completely done. We still have to run the cable in, buy and install a window unit A/C, switch out the light fixture, and I still have to put up the trim on the paneled wall. Details, details. I’m just glad to have all that furniture out of my dining room/office!

Dog's avatar

@Jeruba I too am distressed at removing accumulated stuff. I am here to root you on!

@augustlan AWESOME! Can you post pix of man-cave? It sounds fabulous and only minor details to finish!

I have done followup with the companies I made contact with and now the networking begins. It would greatly behoove me to paint. (especially that blasted elf painting) and also paint another line of potential holiday cards as most have a license. So I will concentrate on that this week.

The show also opened my eyes to my need to create a line of work that is not as niche. For instance instead of just butterflies on a ragged background I need to paint flowers. For years I have avoided flowers but flowers are eternal and always in.
In January a garden flag company asked me “What do you have against painting flowers?” :P so perhaps I will work on it.

Introverted_Leo's avatar

@Jeruba: yeah, no luck with the job. :( It was so sad. I thought the interview felt like it went really well! Oh well.

Hey, good luck with getting ready for those house guests! Sounds like a chore, lol.

@augustlan: way to go! I’d love to see pictures of the finished room!

@Dog: sounds like you’re making progress with your new business. Keep up the good work!

Yeah…so as I already mentioned, I didn’t get the job. No return calls from the lady or anything. I felt really sad. Now this means I have to find a job elsewhere, and it won’t be in the design industry like I hoped it would. : / I might have to go back to my old job, which I really, really don’t want to do. But what can you do?

Only good news I got this week? I got straight A’s this semester in school again. (Woo, I guess.) I hope I don’t sound like I’m bragging or anything ‘cause that’s not my intent, but for me this is nothing new or exciting. I’ve always gotten good grades, but it means nothing to me if I can’t use that knowledge and actually get a job with it! lol. I’m rather frustrated with myself now in that regard.

And my story…meh, I’m playing with different ideas. It’s been veering off into some crazy directions (ha, what else is new?), so I had to pull back on the reigns of just trying to let it take its own course and make some decisions about where it should go. I’m really a trial-and-error sort of person. Sometimes I have to learn the long way to learn anything at all.

I’ve been struggling with the concepts of a plot-driven vs. a character-driven story. I think it would be nice to have a balance of both, but I guess I’ve been “test driving” both methods and trying to figure out when I should use each. Right now I’m going with character-driven. That seems to be the easiest way to develop characters and put them in interesting situations instead of forcing them into pre-planned plot schemes. Idk, we’ll see where that takes things. ^_^

Even though it seems it’s taking me forever to finish anything, I feel like I’m learning a lot about different writing techniques and styles along the way. I guess that’s a good thing. (It’s sorta like a big experiment or something.)

Yep, so that’s the end of my weekly rant.

Jeruba's avatar

@Dog , would it improve your attitude to do a little quick painting of the blasted elf getting literally blasted—say, falling from a hot air balloon into a volcano, or posing as St. Sebastian, or being gobbled alive by a giant werechicken? Sometimes I relieve savage impulses by doing things like that in words, and then I feel better and can delete it and go on.

@Introverted_Leo, I am so sorry about the job. I hope you will follow up with a phone call and at least ask (you can always ask) if they’ve made their choice and if so, what it would have taken for you to be their first pick. Often you can learn something really valuable that way—either about how better to present yourself or just the fact (sometimes a comfort) that there really was nothing you could have done differently. Anyway, that is not the only opportunity you will have to work in your field. Don’t give up. And congratulations on your grades, which do mean something and are not trivial. We’re happy to hear you brag report your success because we’re on your side—your cheering squad.

@augustlan, great work! Pictures, yes! What feels nicer than a sense of accomplishment at a job well done?

mangeons's avatar

Hello all! I’m currently working on two goals:

1) Finish my story (About 12,000 words so far, 33 pages in Microsoft Word, single-spaced)
2) Organize my bedroom

By the way, the man cave looks awesome. He loves it. : )

Jeruba's avatar

Hi, @mangeons, and welcome to my favorite support group! Those are two great goals. Are you working on a novel or a novella? I’ll look forward to hearing about your progress on both fronts.

mangeons's avatar

Probably a novella. It was going to be a novel, but I’m just running out of things to do with it. I’ve been working on it for a little over a year, but it’s coming to a close, because I decided that it was time for it to be over.

As for the “organizing my bedroom” part… well, it’s going. ; )

I’m also looking into losing a bit of weight, getting more in shape, and creating a whole new style this summer (new clothes, contacts, hairstyle, etc.)

I’m interested to see how your goals are going, @Jeruba. :)

Dog's avatar

@Introverted_Leo BRAVO on the straight A’s! You are not bragging- you are showing great character and dedication!

@mangeons welcome to our progress corner. Sounds like a good start on the novella.

mangeons's avatar

Thanks Dog. : )

Bri_L's avatar

@all – My good wishes go out to you. I am off beat on the reporting right now. My wife’s grandmother passed. She was like a grandmother to me as well. There is other stuff to report but no time.

Hang in there everyone.

Dog's avatar

@Bri_L I am so sorry at your loss. The best to your family.

augustlan's avatar

@Bri_L Oh, I’m so sorry. Our thoughts are with you.

@all Sorry I’ve been remiss about checking back in on everybody else’s progress. Keep up the good work! I’ll post pics of the man cave once all the trim is done, and the ‘art’ (mostly knives, heehee) is hung.

Jeruba's avatar

================ Sunday, 5/30/2009 ================

My condolences, @Bri_L, to you and your family.

Dog's avatar

I am hoping @Bri_L has a better week this week.

This week I did not accomplish much aside of a bit of followup on contacts. I really must in earnest get back to work this week. We are headed to a wedding today and will return tomorrow. I will carve out studio time in advance so my spouse is aware and can find other things to do and not disturb me.

How about everyone else?

Where is @Snoopy and where is @seekingwolf?

mangeons's avatar

I have not made much progress this week at all. I organized my room a bit more, that’s about it. :/

Jeruba's avatar

Snoopy hasn’t logged in for nearly two weeks (since May 19th). I sent her a message a couple of days ago just to ask if she was still around because I missed her.

I have tossed a few things but haven’t really dug in yet. It is a daunting task, but I have to do it, no choice.

Are we all in a low season?

mangeons's avatar

I’m looking to work most on my room in about… 2 weeks, approximately. When summer vacation starts. :)

Introverted_Leo's avatar

@Bri_L: love to you and your family. ^_^

I wish I wasn’t the one breaking the mold…<__< lol, but I made some progress this week. Rollin’ along with my online class and doing well so far. And my old manager at my previous job is letting me come back with plenty of hours for the summer, so I’m happy about that. I also got to see two old friends in the past two days (I haven’t seen them in three years!). Not exactly progress, but it sure made my weekend.

As for my story…meh, my renewed plot was sucking so horribly (I don’t know what happened! It was driving me insane and I kept changing stuff…), so I’ve decided to use newer elements that I explored recently with a lot of the older ones I’d already developed in my last draft. I’ll just do some tweaking, cut the useless scenes and add the new ones. I started writing parts of it to get it moving along again, so I guess that’s good. I’m just sick of being so indecisive and just want to get this thing done so I can say I actually finished it, lol.

No editing until the first draft is absolutely finished! I know people keep telling me this, but it’s so hard for me to stop being critical of myself! I size my work and ideas down to nothing before I even give them a chance. I’m like the most (internally) critical person I know. : (

Dog's avatar

@Introverted_Leo BRAVO!
It is awesome you are seeing progress on all fronts!

@Jeruba I was told by an artist friend that right now feels like a “sea change” which she explained is an old sailor term. A sea change is when all the enviornment around you changes and business as usual no longer applies.

In a sea change you step back and observe the lay of the land. Sometimes you change your business model and approach tasks in a different way due to the changes.

@mangeons good planning.

Jeruba's avatar

@Dog, thanks. I know the term, but I understood it to mean a change brought about by the sea, like what happens to driftwood or glass. In any case, that is what it feels like. Thanks for that notion, which feels like an organizing thought. I think I am out there somewhere and drifting a little bit while I try to figure out what’s happened.

Hmm, turns out it’s Shakespeare’s expression: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sea_change_(transformation)

@Introverted_Leo, great to see some good news from you. Maybe you can lead us all out of our malaise. Wonder what would happen if you and I swapped plot elements for a little while.

@mangeons, that makes sense. Tell me when you are starting, and I will start the same day. Sometimes I need to put things off just a little bit, just a little, so I can sort of psych myself up for a running start. On a scale of 1 to 10, how bad is your room (with 1 being “ready to host the president or the queen” and 10 being “can’t get in the door or find the bed”)? Mine is probably about a 5. Well, I guess it might be a 5 if you’re feeling charitable.

@augustlan, your pictures (and live closeups) might inspire those of us who have our rooms to work on.

Dog's avatar

@Jeruba great job on finding resources on Sea Change.

augustlan's avatar

@Dog Follow up is a necessary part of the process, right? So, it counts. :)

@Introverted_Leo Great news on the job. And remember: no editing!

@mangeons You’ll get that room straightened up in no time once school’s out.

@Jeruba So will you. ;)

It is like a sea change, isn’t it? I’ve been restless and listless, all at the same time. I don’t seem to know what the hell I should be doing at the moment. Just to try to get motivated on something, last night I started the process of applying for my state business license online. The form asked me for a date when the business will be operational and I threw caution to the wind and firmly decided that July 1st is it. However, I’ve just looked at my calendar, and realized that’s not going to work at all. I may have to push it back to August 1st. Ah, well… I tried, right?

In the meantime, I’ve still been looking for jobs for us, and my husband has an interview on Wednesday with a company that sounds really interesting. Fingers crossed!

mangeons's avatar

I think I’ll start on the 20th, four days after summer vacation starts. That’s about… 18 days from now. : )

On a scale of 1 to 10, I’d say my room’s about a 7 or 8, but it really depends on how recently I’ve cleaned it.

But I don’t need to clean it, I have to go through and organize, and throw out anything I don’t need, instead of just moving things around to make it look cleaner.

Bri_L's avatar

@ all thanks for your thoughts
@Jeruba Lulls do happen
@mangeons don’t forget to give yourself a little break!
@Introverted_Leo way to go! And don’t cloud the flow with editing.
@Dog sup dog!

I am supper psyched. I just finished day two of a class that meets mon/tues calles web standards. I have already doned html and some css and I LOVE IT! I may have found my calling. The combination of what I did with that. I love love love the language part. Even when it won’t work!

Also, I found out that, even though I had an engineer, an account rep, a writer for a law firm and one other person proof my resume it still had 11 errors in it when I sent it out to the last 4 places including the cheese place. BUT I met with a resume professional and she loves my new style and my gimmic and she is going to proof it for me this time. l

mangeons's avatar

@Bri_L Of course I won’t. : )

Sorry for your loss, also. : (

Dog's avatar

YES!!!!!!! @Bri_L I am psyched for you too! AWESOME!

Introverted_Leo's avatar

@Bri_L: yay! I have no idea what css is, lol, but it’s good to see you so excited about your work. : )

augustlan's avatar

@Bri_L Lurve for your enthusiasm! It’s great to be excited by new things, isn’t it?

seekingwolf's avatar

Gah, I’ve been so busy lately…sorry I forgot to report my success. :)

Overall…for the past 1.5 months, I’ve lost 10 pounds! YAY
I plan to keep counting calories (1,100 a day), taking my meds, working out, and staying on a low-glycemic diet. Awesome!

I also got a new car from my parents (they got me a Honda Fit). It’s VERY good on gas and it was cheap too! Now I get to go to the gym whenever I like and I won’t have to rely on my mom. :)

Jeruba's avatar

@seekingwolf, great to hear from you, and with such a terrific report! I am thrilled for you. And car—wow, big changes!

@Bri_L, I am so happy to hear you sounding excited and engaged. I do know what HTML and CSS are, and there is plenty going on that’ll use those abilities.

@mangeons, I started on my room last night, but I’ll still be working on it when you join in. Take your time. I’ve already found some interesting stuff and some surprises, and I’ve removed some tough-to-part-with worthless treasures and also some plain old useless paper.

Dog's avatar

@seekingwolf That is too awesome! You are an inspiration!

Introverted_Leo's avatar

@seekingwolf: way to go, SW! Keep up the good work!

essieness's avatar

Well I didn’t know this thread existed until @Jeruba posted it over here. I’d love to join!

June 6, 2009:
Two more weeks until I am finished with course number 5 at the University of Phoenix. I’m really proud of myself for staying focused and dedicated to a complete online learning experience. I only have 8 courses left, and at 5 weeks each, if I can keep my butt in gear, I’ll be done on April 19, 2010! Finally!

mangeons's avatar

My other goal that I didn’t post here yet was to pass Geometry…It was a secret.

Well… I passed!!! :D

Dog's avatar

@mangeons High- 5! Awesome on achieving a secret goal!

@essieness Welcome to the progress thread! Great goals! It takes a lot of self- dicipline to complete online courses.

mangeons's avatar

secret Goals are the best kind… They’re the most surprising when accomplished! :)

Granted, I passed with the very minimum score, but I passed! :D

augustlan's avatar

@seekingwolf That is great news! I’m so dang happy for you, I’m grinning like an idiot. :D

@essieness Welcome girly! We’re happy to have you. I’m impressed with your goal, and your progress towards it. Don’t forget to tune in next week, same bat time, same bat channel. :P

@mangeons I knew you had it in ya’, kid. :)

Jeruba's avatar

================ Sunday, 6/7/2009 ================

@essieness, welcome, welcome, welcome! We tune in every Sunday after I post the marker, just to say what we’ve done and cheer each other on, or commiserate as needed. The regularity has been a real motivator for me, and I love to hear how others are doing. I’m delighted for you to join us. Online learning takes some real discipline! Hurrah for you for staying with it.

Attagirl, @mangeons! Passing is passing. I agree that it is nice to have some secret goals. It can be hard having folks looking over your shoulder and asking “Haven’t you ~~ yet?” or “Weren’t you going to ~~?” I always like to have at least one or two secrets at any given time. Makes me more interesting to myself.

I am pleased to report that I have made huge strides in clearing out my overstuffed room and definitely have it on the run.

I’ve also made one of three necessary appointments to get some heath matters straightened out.

Some progress is better than no progress.

Introverted_Leo's avatar

Whoa! There’s so much going on!

@essieness: howdy, and welcome to the club! Great job staying focused in school. I know how hard that can be. o_O

@mangeons: awesome job secretly passing geometry! :D

@Jeruba: nice job!

My biggest progress this week happened with my writing. I’ve got about 18,300 words writen so far. It feels like I’ve got this broad map I drew out and am trying to follow my own directions from point A to B but am stopping in some unexpected locations, taking back roads and finding strange (though interesting) things… But it’s still moving forward and always gets back on the main route, I think. <_<

essieness's avatar

@all Thanks for the warm welcome!

@mangeons Congrats on passing geometry! That was always a difficult subject for me.

@Jeruba Good for you on making progress on cleaning your room. Please keep us updated about your health situation. I’ll be sending happy thoughts your way :)

@Introverted_Leo Wow, that’s great progress! What are you writing, anyway?

Introverted_Leo's avatar

@essieness: I’m working on a fantasy novel. There’s been a lot of back-and-forth in my progress (too many “1st” drafts) so I’m just trying to get a draft done as quick as I can now so I can nit-pick later. And I love to nit-pick. <shakes head piteously>

@All: oh, yeah, remember that job I told you all I didn’t get? Well, it turned out the lady had an unfortunate family issue come up and she’s had to fly out to be with them and put her entire business on hold until she gets it sorted out. She called me to let me know this and told me she would still keep me in mind when she decides to start back up again.

At least I know now that I just didn’t make a bad impression or something. I was pretty worried when I didn’t hear anything back from her, lol.

mangeons's avatar

Congrats at still having a chance, @Introverted_Leo! How could you make a bad impression on anyone? ;D

Introverted_Leo's avatar

Exactly, right? :P

augustlan's avatar

@Jeruba Good work! You’ll have that room in shape before you know it. And I’m sure you know how thrilled I am to hear that you’re getting on top of the health stuff. ;-)

@Introverted_Leo Sounds like you are really making headway on the book, and I’m glad to hear that the job is not a lost opportunity!

I don’t have much to report this week, I’m afraid. I’ve lost my motivation again. Sigh. We did have a family cleaning day at my house over the weekend, so at least the house looks decent! My husband (Mark) hasn’t heard anything back from the interview he had last week, but he has an interview with a different company tomorrow.

I hope to get something (anything!) done this week.

Introverted_Leo's avatar

@augustlan: hooray for decent houses! And good luck to your husband with the interview. : )

Dog's avatar

@augustlan A clean house is good preparation for productive times.

@Introverted_Leo At least she told you! Great progress on the book!

@Jeruba Good about the appointments and fantastic news about the progress in the spring cleaning!

I painted an elephant seal pup. Hopefully this week will be very productive as I will have solid studio time.

essieness's avatar

@Dog I had no idea you are an artist. I’m sure I speak for everyone when I say we’d love to see some of your art.

Dog's avatar

@essieness Check your pm for link. :)

augustlan's avatar

Go @Dog! What a nice feeling to know you’ve got the studio time coming. :)

Dog's avatar

Yessss!!! I am in studio now! Gleefully setting up palette!

mangeons's avatar

@Dog Is there a link somewhere with your artwork? I wanna see. ;D

Dog's avatar

Sent and added to fluthers :)

Bri_L's avatar

@Jeruba – That had to feel GOOD! Way to go!
@Introverted_Leo – 18,300 words and a woman in a family crisis who still thought enough of you to call? That is good stuff! Way to go!
@essieness – Welcome and rock on! That is a great way to look at it. One class at a time.
@mangeons – Rock on! Way to go my friend! Pass is pass. And remember, When you pass Geometry your not just a smart person your “acute” one to. Get it, acute angle? less than 90 degrees? chirp chirp chirp
@augustlan – we all have ups and downs. No worries.
@Dog – I LOVE it when I read you get to paint!!!!

I am still rocking out in my class and loving it. I may have some cool news to report about a desiger’s café I want to join. we will see.

augustlan's avatar

@Bri_L Your enthusiasm for the class is inspiring. It’s got me thinking about taking some web design classes. Does one need to be very technology oriented in order to do that?

Bri_L's avatar

Nope.
In fact if you used the old word proccessers back in the days of DOS it is similar to what you had to do when you wanted to format stuff back then

It isn’t like programming logic. There are rules. You learn them. Become more familiar with them. But then you build templates and snippets to help you write the code faster.

it really makes sense when someone explains it to you.

augustlan's avatar

Awesome!

mangeons's avatar

I’m pretty familiar with html, but I’m not so good with CSS.

Jeruba's avatar

Me too, @Dog, me too, me too, me too!

I lurve this thread.

Bri_L's avatar

@mangeons – at this point I can’t fathom doing html without CSS.

Dog's avatar

:) Sent Jeruba

@Bri_L CSS is an incredible skill to learn and I am eager to see what you do with it!
I am truly excited for you!

Shhhh- do not tell the chaos makers of the world.. I painted again today.

La_chica_gomela's avatar

@Bri_L: That’s so coo! I ‘m really happy to see you here! I miss you on fluther more often!

Bri_L's avatar

@La_chica_gomela – Thanks. I am very slowly re-entering the fray.

essieness's avatar

@Bri_L Hey! I’ve been wondering about you :)

Glad everyone is having a great week. I’m just trucking along in school. Nothing much to update.

Jeruba's avatar

@La_chica_gomela, welcome! Are you joining us? Or did you just stop by to visit Bri_L? That’s just fine, of course, but you’re also welcome to stay and tell us about whatever you’re working on.

La_chica_gomela's avatar

@Jeruba: I want to join! Ive been reading, I just hadn’t said anything yet, because not too much has been going on with my goals in the last few weeks. I found the Q where you linked it, in the same thread as @essieness.

Well, I guess I do have one: as you say, “some progress is better than no progress”, I have a certain number of miles I want to run this year, and over the past month I’ve been doing really well, a lot better than last month, so I’m really happy with that. I’ll let you know how it turns out in about 6 months! ;-)

mangeons's avatar

@Bri_L It’s a different kind of html probably than you’re doing, I use it a lot on a different site, which we won’t mention. shh.

Bri_L's avatar

@mangeons – AAaaaa. I see. I have so much yet to learn.

Jeruba's avatar

Excellent goal, @La_chica_gomela. If you prefer not to share particulars, you can just tell us that you ran this week, or didn’t, and we’ll be there with encouragement and support.

Dog's avatar

================== June 14th 2009 ===================

Progress- I painted for a manufacturer from my line of paintings that is not cute and cuddly but does sell nicely. Today I am painting cute and cuddly- this fellow Charlie in hopes of getting him out of the shelter while earning funds for Old Dog Haven.

On Friday I was contacted via email by a publisher wishing me to illustrate a book about a mouse by one of his authors. I will call him back on Monday and we will see where it goes if at all.

Also I am again reading the book “The Introvert Advantage” and find is a very good tool for emotional well-being. I have a very bad habit of trying to be an extrovert and not making quiet time for myself. If I do this long enough I become emotionally exhausted. Are any of you introverts?

Eager to hear the updates from everyone!

Bri_L's avatar

@Dog – That looks exactly like a photo! YOU ARE GOOD! I am totally interested to hear about the illustrating the mouse book. I love illustrating and want to follow you if you do that and hear how that goes!!!!! Keep us posted.

I have just been banging away at my class. Tons of work. That’s about it. Had a small relapse of my headache from November. It is gone now though.

Dog's avatar

@Bri_L Glad you are making headway in your classes. Regarding the pix I linked to of Charlie- it is a reference photo- one of three. I am painting him now in a looser abstract way. My avatar is a painting though. :)

Bri_L's avatar

@Dog – I was joking about the photo, I could tell. NOT that I don’t think your capable of photorealism. hehe

Jeruba's avatar

@Dog, thanks for posting the marker. I usually do it at midnight, and last night I simply forgot.

It’s great to hear of your special assignment for the dog shelter and also of your possible illustration contract. Good luck!

Are any of us introverts? My guess would be Most with a capital M. I’ve never heard of the book, but it sounds like one that many of us ought to readm, if you think so highly of it. The Introvert Advantage: How to Thrive in an Extrovert World, by Marti Olsen Laney, Psy.D.

My week has been completely taken over by something new. My company has offered early retirement incentives to qualified employees, and I have been caught up in a buzz of activity to answer the question “Can I afford to take it? Can I afford not to take it?” The idea is thrilling but scary. Actually it is a risk either way because I could turn it down and then get laid off two weeks later with less than half the benefit. So I am in the process of analyzing our complete financial picture and projecting ahead to figure out what to do. Realistically I think I have to accept it, but I want to understand everything it means for us before I do. So—hours and hours of numbers and forms and quarterly reports and fine print. I’ll decide tomorrow after a Q&A meeting with HR.

La_chica_gomela's avatar

@Jeruba: That’s exciting (and scary)! I hope you come to a decision that makes you happy!

As for me, I ran today. It was great while I was out there, and I made great time, but the weather has turned hot very suddenly, and after I got home I thought I was going to throw up. I’m fine now, its just irritating because it seems like I should have been more careful, but everything seemed fine at the time. I ran a lot in this weather last summer, so I guess I’m mentally used to it, but not physically acclimated to it anymore.

Bri_L's avatar

@Jeruba – That could be the coolest thing ever. You could really focus on your writing and fill in with working where you want. I know there are other things to consider but wow.

@La_chica_gomela – I hate that. don’t let it scare you away from it though!

Introverted_Leo's avatar

@Dog: Wow! It sounds like you’ve got plenty of progress going on. I hope that opportunity with the publisher comes through. You’d do an awesome job on it!

And yes, I’m an introvert, too! I tend to spend too much time being alone and not enough with others. Funny we have the opposite problem.

@Bri_L: I’m glad things with your classes seem to be going well and that your headache is gone!

@Jeruba: early retirement! Well, it’s good you’re carefully considering all the angles before making your decision. That sounds like a really big decision to make!

@La_chica_gomela: kudos for staying active, even in the heat! If it’s as hot there as it is here in AZ, then I know that is no small feat. I should be doing more of that, lol.

Let’s see…this week I’ve just been turning in some assignments for my online class. That’s going well for now. I’m still waiting for the manager at my job to tell me they’ve got the O.K. on my background check papers, so I can’t work until that’s back. And I washed my car today (I don’t know why I was wearing jeans—it’s way too hot out for that!). And I’ve reached nearly 32,000 words on the draft for my story. I’m getting there, I guess, but it isn’t easy knowing the type of editing I’ll need to do later.

Bri_L's avatar

@Introverted_Leo – The waiting game sucks! Jeans while washing your car?? Hmmm. Great job on the story. That just astounds me!!!

Dog's avatar

@Introverted_Leo Awesome progress on the story draft! Also washing your car. Lately it seems I am hoping mother nature does it for me. Have they given you any word on how long the background check will take?

@Bri_L: HA! I knew it! I wish I could do photo-realism sometimes but I do get it enough so people can recognize the dog on site so that will do. I have made my avatar Charlie as in the painting. Hopefully someone will fall in love with the fellow and adopt him.

@Jeruba: Wow! Decisions! A tough call for sure. I would likely opt to take it in this economy but again- I see why it would be scary to try to make ends meet. Let us know what you decide.

@La_chica_gomela: Way to go on the run! Try it earlier in the morning or evening if you are having trouble at first! I admire you greatly for running in the heat and meeting your goal for the week!

Introverted_Leo's avatar

Thanks, @Bri_L!

@Dog: well, they said they should have had it by now, so idk. I guess it should be any day. : /

La_chica_gomela's avatar

@Dog: You’re so right! I usually do run early in the mornings when it’s hot like this, but if I don’t wake up early, my punishment is to run when I do wake up. By evening, I’ve usually forgotten or gotten too tired to run. After going through this once or twice, when that alarm goes off at 6:00 or so, I jump out of bed!

mangeons's avatar

Well, my final grade in Geometry was a B! :)

And I’m starting working on my room in about 5 days… not looking forward to it, really. At all.

augustlan's avatar

I’ve been sick… sinus infection that has morphed into bronchitis. Not much getting done around here.

Good work everyone! @Jeruba, that sounds exciting/terrifying!

Also, for the record: I’m an introvert who is very good at pretending to be an extrovert when the occasion calls for it.

Bri_L's avatar

@mangeons – WHOOP WHOOP and all the lemurs say OWWW! Nice job!

@augustlan – I also have a sinus infection. I am also an introvert who is very good at pretending to be an extrovert and, by coincidence, a postman.

Introverted_Leo's avatar

@mangeons: woot-woot! Way to go!

@Bri_L & @augustlan: oh man, I hope you guys feel better soon!

mangeons's avatar

She got that sinus infection from me… it was horrible. There’s none left of it except a horrible cough and sore neck/throat for me… ;)

Thanks @all for the congrats!

Dog's avatar

@mangeons – Great Job on that B!

@augustlan- Yeah- that dang sinus infection went through our house too. May you recover quickly.

Jeruba's avatar

================ Sunday, 6/21/2009 ================

Happy summer solstice!

I have decided to go for it. Three months from now, I will be out, with a generous package to ease my way into the next stage of life. I am excited and thrilled, and I feel so much lighter already! There’s a temptation to rush into a bunch of new projects and commitments, but I think I will take a little quiet time first and just Stop.

@La_chica_gomela, good for you on the running. Are you feeling it?

@mangeons, time to get going on that room! I have been making major progress and filled up the recycle bin several times. What’s your target? Big congratulations on your geometry!

@augustlan, your main task right now is to rest up and get better. Hoping to hear a good report very soon.

@Introverted_Leo, you are really pumping out the words. Great going.

@Bri_L and @Dog, it is so good to hear from you regularly and know you’re making huge strides. Thanks for your BIG words of encouragement to everybody!

essieness's avatar

@Jeruba Happy Summer Solstice!

I’ve been a little absent from Fluther lately.

Here’s my progress: I’ve been applying for “grown up” jobs in Houston, and actually got a call back. I have a phone interview on Monday morning for a position I really want. If I’m offered the job, I’ll be moving soon. So, wish me luck!

I want to read back over everyone’s progress, but right now it’s 3:30 am, and I’m freaking tired. I promise I’ll read back and give everyone some props. Until then, props to everyone and big hugs to all of you :) This place makes me happy. You ALL make me happy.

mangeons's avatar

@Jeruba I’ve had a setback. Little did I know, in the time scheduled, I’d be at my mother’s house for a week, when my own room is a state away. I’m going back to my own house for a day for father’s day, but I’d much rather spend that time with my father on father’s day. And the immediate week after that we’re going on vacation to Virginia Beach, so I guess I didn’t really think this date through. I guess I’ll have to start then.

mangeons's avatar

@essieness Good luck with your interview. That will be awesome if you get the job. :^)

Jeruba's avatar

@essieness, how exciting! The best of luck on your interview. And more than luck: the best of you. Take a look at this thread if you haven’t already.

You are kind to think of reading back over this whole thread, but it’s very long. Just the last few weeks ought to do. Plenty of progress to be seen right there.

@mangeons, sometimes we do have to give ourselves a reprieve. All the better to psych yourself for when you really do dig in. Enjoy your time away. School’s out—time to relax!

La_chica_gomela's avatar

@Jeruba: Am I feeling what?

essieness's avatar

@Jeruba So, are you retiring? That’s what I’m gathering from your comment above. If so, congratulations! What an exciting transition. Also, thank you for pointing me towards the interview thread :)

@augustlan I hope you’re feeling better.

@Introverted_Leo I take online classes too, but all of mine are online. How do you like the experience?

Jeruba's avatar

@La_chica_gomela, the effects of running.

@essieness, yes! Thank you. It’s an early retirement, and I could look for another job, but I won’t. I’ll do some freelance editing work, which I love, but only for clients I feel like working with. I’ll also have some real writing time of my own at last.

Introverted_Leo's avatar

@Jeruba: nice! How exciting is that? Enjoy the good life!

@essieness: that’s great news! Yes, and good luck with your interview! Just be yourself (and professional) and you’ll likely do just fine. The rest is up to the powers that be.

About the online classes, I like mine so far. It’s pretty straight-foward and simple. My professor (I guess I call her that) is really quick at grading and seems nice, so it’s been a good experience for me thus far.

@mangeons: that’s too bad you won’t be with your father today. I hope your vacation is enjoyable regardless!

Progress…well, this week’s felt pretty lazy for me. Not so much pumping out with the word count this week compared to the last two—I’m at about 36,200 words. I did lose some steam due to discouragement (that inner critic was barking at me again). But I did manage to write around 4,000, so that’s good. I actually thought I wrote a lot less before I went back and checked this afternoon, lol.

Not much else has happened on the home front in terms of progress. It was something of a blur, actually, heh. Just normal stuff with my online class and whatnot. Nothing worth reporting.

mangeons's avatar

@Introverted_Leo I actually did say that I was going to be at my own house (with him) for today. We had a cookout with him, his girlfriend, my grandparents, and aunt & uncle at my grandparent’s house. It was really fun. I’m back at my mom’s house for a week now, though. (:—

Introverted_Leo's avatar

Oh, my bad. Well, that’s even better!

La_chica_gomela's avatar

@Jeruba: lol! yeah the effects: I feel tired!

augustlan's avatar

@Jeruba I’m so excited for you! What a wonderful adventure you’re about to embark on. Enjoy!

@essieness Good luck on your interview! Keep us posted.

@mangeons Don’t worry baby. Your room at my house needs a lot of work, too! ;)

@Introverted_Leo Look at you… making progress when you’re not even looking! Good job, girl.

@La_chica_gomela Run, La chica, run! I admire your will power.

@Bri_L I hope you’re feeling better now!

So. I’ve still been sick all week… finally went to the doctor on Friday and got some antibiotics and a fresh inhaler. I’m starting to feel marginally better, but have done absolutely nothing all week but sleep. But! I have some exciting news, nonetheless… I was made a Fluther Community Manager today! I’m so excited about it! :D

mangeons's avatar

@augustlan Pssh, no. Here, it’s not my room, and it’s not all my mess. I’m not cleaning up their crap for the sake of cleaning.

essieness's avatar

@augustlan Congrats! So what exactly is a Fluther Community Manager?

Introverted_Leo's avatar

@augustlan: getting better is certainly progress, as is becoming Community Manager! Glad you are feeling better. : )

augustlan's avatar

@mangeons Well, you won’t be cleaning it up alone… your sisters will have to help!

@essieness Thanks! It’s kind of like an uber-mod, same duties plus some additional ones… dealing with community drama, sending emails, ‘meeting’ with Andrew regularly.

@Introverted_Leo Thank you!

mangeons's avatar

@augustlan Nice try…. but you’re not gonna use Fluther to try to make us clean that room. ;)

Bri_L's avatar

Sorry everyone I am getting slammed right now in class and at home. Know I support you all and am reading your progress!

Jeruba's avatar

@augustlan, Fluther Community Manager! Big congratulations on your promotion. I hope you thoroughly enjoy your new status, and I know you will do great service for the community.

seekingwolf's avatar

Losing more weight :) I’ve lost about…12 so far? I feel that the 2 lb/week thing is slowing down a bit (losing 1.5 pounds/week) because I increased my weights a little in weight class. My arms feel stronger and more muscular over the past few weeks. :)

I was advised to incorporate a “cheat meal” into my diet a few weeks ago. I think it’s working really well. By having one cheat meal a week, I feel even less deprived and I don’t eat as many carbs/sweets during the week. It feels really good and it’s fun to plan what I am going to eat…my cheat meal is ALWAYS Friday dinner…occasionally I switch it to Saturday dinner instead if I know I am going out to a restaurant with a friend.

Introverted_Leo's avatar

@seekingwolf: hey, it’s been a while! It sounds like you’re really finding your groove and the results are coming around. Awesome job!

Jeruba's avatar

@seekingwolf, great to hear from you! Your progress is excellent. Thank you for sharing your ongoing success.

mangeons's avatar

Crap. Crap, crap, CRAP.

I can’t find my story. My 33 page fantasy novella so far. I can’t find it. I don’t know what to doooo.

Introverted_Leo's avatar

O_O <sends magic pixie dust your way for aid> I hope it turns up!

Oh man, this makes me want to back up my stuff…lol. Flash drive and Dropbox!

mangeons's avatar

I couldn’t find my flashdrive, so I never saved it to that. It was in my email, and I think I saved it to Word somewhere on my computer at home. I hope. This really sucks.

Thanks for the magic pixie dust (:

seekingwolf's avatar

@mangeons

Omigosh I’m so sorry to hear that! :O

Did you do a file search on your PC? Search for word document files on your computer with the file name of whatever you named your novel.

Dog's avatar

@Jeruba I think you made an awesome choice! Way to go!

@essieness May you nail the interview!

@mangeons So you are totally de-cluttering? Did you find the manuscript yet??!

@La_chica_gomela You are doing great!

@Bri_L I almost called you to get help on changing a color on a font in a stylesheet… :)

@seekingwolf AWESOME! You are an inspiration!

I just bought the wii game EA Sports… I will be taking the 30 day challenge. Should be interesting to say the least. I just want to be healthier and be able to get rid of stress without resorting to wine. ;)

Last week I painted three different paintings. One sold- YAY! I hope to paint more soon.

Does anyone know where @Snoopy is?

mangeons's avatar

@Dog Probably won’t be de-cluttering for a week at least. (definitely) because we’re going to the /beach/ this Saturday for a week. So no, I haven’t found it. ): I didn’t get anything done yesterday, I was so sick.

But I guess that’s progress in itself, because I have this phobia of vomiting and I threw up /9/ times yesterday and didn’t freak out. I guess. It still sucked.

Jeruba's avatar

Oh, dear, @mangeons. That is terrible. You must train yourself to back up. Always ask yourself: “How much of this do I want to do over?” The answer should always be “None.”

Some ideas to protect your work in progress:

— Once every work session, copy your files elsewhere, such as to a thumb drive.
— Periodically (like once a week, when you’re going strong) back up to someone else’s computer or e-mail a copy to someone for safekeeping.
— Once a month, burn a CD with all your current files on it. If possible, burn two to keep in different locations.
— You can send files to yourself as attachments and leave them stored for a period of time on the e-mail server.
— You can also use a file storage server such as Google’s.

And it never hurts to have a paper copy. Worst case, you could type it in again.

I’m so sorry you’ve been sick, too. That is a double blow. But at least school is out, and you did get that B in geometry.

mangeons's avatar

Thanks for the lurve, @Jeruba.

Gaah, I can’t find it in my files anywhere. It might still be in my school computer, but I can’t really access that, and it was my last year at that school anyway. I don’t know what I’ll do.

essieness's avatar

I was offered the job I’ve been interviewing for all week! The offer is contingent upon my background check going through, so as long as they don’t find those dead bodies, I’ll be good! Looks like I’m moving to Houston!

aprilsimnel's avatar

Congratulations on the new job, @essieness! Embarking on new adventures is exciting.

I finished my C25K program today! I now run for a half hour three days a week for approximately 3 miles!

mangeons's avatar

Congrats congrats congrats, @essieness! When do you start? =)

Introverted_Leo's avatar

@essieness: kudos! Let us know how your first day goes when you start! : )

augustlan's avatar

Whoo hoo! Way to go!

Dog's avatar

======================= June 28th 2009====================

@essieness WHOOOO YAAAA!!!!! AWESOME!!!

@mangeons- Sorry about being sick like that. Hope you are well now.

@aprilsimnel What is a C25K program? Congrats on completing it!

An interesting thing happened this week. I got out of my year-long rut and am back to daily exercise. Purchased the wii program EA Sports and am on day 5 the 30 day challenge.
Here is what is interesting: within 24 hours of working out again I took by business by the horns and actually called up manufacturers to seek status on production. The end result was amending one contract so that I am allowed to offer the images for non-profit use and I requested nullification of another contract as they were in violation of the contract terms.

For me- an introvert who hates to talk on the phone and shies away from business stuff- this was monumental. I have tackled every task with vigor since taking up the exercise.

Enough of observations- here is my actual update:

I got a contract for a Christmas painting through my agent which will be sold in the UK and France this year. Not huge money but money nonetheless.

I will be finishing the elf painting and contacting the company that wanted it to see if we are still on. If not I will start next years line of Christmas Cards.

How are you all?

Jeruba's avatar

Oh, >>> Big Cheer <<< for essieness! We knew you would wow ‘em. What a great success report to start our week! This definitely means break out the balloons. We want all the details when the time comes. How far is your move, and how soon?

Great news from you, too, @Dog, and a timely lesson about exercise. I don’t know who else needs a prompt like that, but I do. Good that your momentum is picking up again. Hurray!

@aprilsimnel, tell us about your program.

As for me and my excavations, I’ve gotten down through the Permian and Triassic layers and am now in the Jurassic, getting pretty close to the Cretaceous. I have continued to fill recycle crates and am letting a lot of things go that cause a <gulp> but that I know in truth I won’t miss. You can actually see my room now, and any minute my desk surface is actually going to be usable. I still have a long way to go—the small chunks are often the hardest—and a thorough cleaning is needed. But iI’m still moving forward.

And we have signed a contract for completely redoing our front and back yards. A change on the outside will be inspiring.

So—not so much writing in these weeks, but progress on other fronts is still progress.

aprilsimnel's avatar

C25K (Couch to 5K) is a 9-week program for new runners (or people like me who haven’t run since high school). You start out interspersing walking and running for a few seconds at a time each, and as the weeks pass, you start walking less and running for longer periods of time up to a half hour. At a 5mph clip, 30 minutes of running is approximately 5 kilometers (or 3.1 miles). I must admit, this iPhone app helped a lot.

I started running again for several reasons. I’m almost 40, but I’m still feeling great physically, and I didn’t want to have to work at being fit again at an older age, when it would be harder. I’ll most likely do some sort of running now until I no longer can. Plus, I had gained a lot of unwanted weight in the past year, and I wasn’t feeling very good about very much, especially since I lost my job last November.

I’m looking to transfer the discipline of this and of the karate classes I started in March into actually doing what I came to NYC to do, but never admitted to myself, which is write/produce/direct and sometimes act in my own films. I don’t think the career goal of many people is to be a production coordinator (i.e. head secretary for a media production), but I was lacking the self-confidence to even admit to myself what I really want to do, much less work toward it.

Being able to actually begin work on something and keep doing it without chickening out or giving up because it’s difficult is important for me to incorporate within, as I have had a tendency to either not start something or continue something if it got too challenging. Taking the path of least resistance seemed to be the easiest thing to do, but being a coward meant that my heart was always heavy, and there were nights when I couldn’t sleep from knowing that I was selling myself short as well as out. Doing this has helped with the self-confidence a bit. Maybe, even, one day, I’ll actually talk to men I’m attracted to without fearing rejection, as well!

So now that the program is technically over, I know that I run at where I am now (3x a week, 30 minutes per run) and in a fortnight, I’ll either add a day or add a few minutes to my current runs.

mangeons's avatar

Ah… relaxing in Virginia Beach (not actually on the beach, but in our rented house). If that’s not progress after a long school year and a horrible illness, then I don’t know what is.

La_chica_gomela's avatar

As for me, I didn’t tell you guys this, but I’ve been living is South America for the last week (and I will be for a while), and um, my running kind of went out the window because I’m living in the middle of a huge city, I didn’t know my way around yet, and I was scared. On the bright side, I’ve discovered that I’m fluent in two languages now. (Not that I achieved that this week, (haha), but I didn’t realy know whether it was true or not until I got here. I’m learning tons of new things, meeting new people, and advancing my career, so, Yay!

Dog's avatar

@Jeruba Your home is going to feel so freeing and peaceful without the clutter and with new yards! Great work!

@essieness When do you move?

@mangeons Have fun on Vacation! Celebrate- you deserve it!

@La_chica_gomela Awesome on the skills and the bilingual!

@aprilsimnel BRAVO! That is an admirable program to finish!

Jeruba's avatar

Wow, @La_chica_gomela, South America! Best wishes on this transition.

@mangeons, I hope you have tons of fun and go home really refreshed and well recovered.

@aprilsimnel, that sounds like a terrific program. How inspiring to see your resolve! Please let us know how you progress.

@Dog, you are a cheerleading star!

Introverted_Leo's avatar

@Dog: that’s awesome, being assertive with making that call. As a fellow (rather extreme) introvert, I know that must have felt really great accomplishing that! And it’s good to hear that your paiting is coming along swimmingly. ^_^

@Jeruba: I like your metaphor, lol. I’m sure you’ll have that room sparkling in no time. And a change of landscaping scenery could be fun!

@aprilsimnel: what an inspiration! I feel totally lazy now, haha. That’s awesome, karate and running! What a great habit to keep up! And let us know how the film venue works out. That sounds like a pretty cool line of work. : )

@mangeons: psh, look at you—chillin’ on the sun beach. :P Have fun!

@La_chica_gomela: what an opportunity; that’s sounds really exciting! (I assume your second language is Spanish?)

Ugh…so, I had a difficult weekend. I finally got to start up at my old job again (at a pizza buffet/indoor amusement park sorta place), and boy—I realized I had to brush up on some new information! Also, they just recently got a new system to use on the cash registers. It works great for everyone else but us folks taking care of party and large group reservations; this was my first time actually being a regular cashier on the job. And then I did some really stupid stuff just from being overwhelemed by all the changes…ick. But I’m finally starting to get the hang of stuff, picking up the new changes in prices and whatnot. I felt like I was practically new, lol.

Then, my mom has been suffering from a recently discovered fibroid growth above her ovary…yeah, so we’ve been helping out around the house a lot more. It’s pretty serious, too. It’s something that runs in the family, but my mom, being the sorta person that likes to prepare herself for everything, pretty much took it in stride. She’s just like well, if push comes to shove, you can take out whatever you want to. I’m not giving birth to any more babies, haha. She’s on lots of meds and is just trying to take things easy. So we’ll see how it all plays out.

Oh, yeah, and I got an “A” on my mid-term for my online class, so that’s good.

Also, this is kinda related in a way, but I’m trying to work on being thankful for more things in my life. Having lived a pretty priveleged life thus far (you could say I’m a bit of a princess), it doesn’t come naturally. That and just keeping a more positive attitude about life in general; I can be pretty melancholy. Also being more assertive, something that really affects me in an more obvious way at work. I don’t like being on anyone’s bad side and generally try to avoid conflicts, so sometimes I don’t speak up about things when I need to. <sighs> Meh, lots of internal changes to work on. Necessary ones.

To end on a positive note, lol, I’m at 44,851 words with my story. But that’s seemed to take a back seat with everything else that’s been going on. I haven’t written anything in three days…but woo, 8,600 words before then! I seriously wonder how much of the stuff I’ve written I’ll keep in the end, though, but I’ll worry about that bridge when I cross it. Even if it’s like two years from now, lol.

Woo, okay, done.

Bri_L's avatar

Catch up time

@essieness – CONGRATULATIONS!! That is awesome!

@Dog – Great to hear about all your progress. Love all the paintings your finishing up. I can’t wait to see the next one. I am a big lover of ‘elf’ improvement.

@Jeruba – I don’t know about writers but some times I find a change of pace revitalizing . Great job on the excavation in house! Was that the inspiration for the outside? :-)

@aprilsimnel – Thanks for the links! I have started being active again myself and they will really help. Good luck with yours!

@mangeons – I bet your just melting! Good for you!

@La_chica_gomela – Very exciting! And as far as running, better safe than sorry! Que bueno!

@Introverted_Leo – Congrats on the on line A. And I continue to be amazed by the progress in writing! Fantastic.

I finally finished my class. I loved every minute of it. So much so that I am switching my browser from Safari to Firefox because I miss the web developer tools on it. I am in the process of building my own web site and m almost done with the first page construction.

Dog's avatar

@Bri_L Please share your site when done!

@Introverted_Leo I love your positive outlook on things. Congrats on 44k words!

augustlan's avatar

Sorry I haven’t been checking in regularly… the new Community Manager job takes quite a bit of my Fluthering time! I just wanted to pop in and lend my support to all of you. I’m impressed with all of the positive happenings!

Dog's avatar

Wish we could help @augustlan !

Thanks for your work keeping Fluther awesome!

mangeons's avatar

@Bri_L Go Firefox! (:

I’m so taaaaaan. =)

augustlan's avatar

I cleaned and cleaned today. The house has been a wreck between my being sick, my being busy, and sheer laziness. I’m sore, but feel good, too.

Bri_L's avatar

@augustlan – Thataway Augustlan hang in there.

Dog's avatar

@augustlian AWESOME!

augustlan's avatar

Ugh, I am totally paying for it today. Fibromyalgia sucks.

mangeons's avatar

You should have known better, @augustlan. Take it slow girlie, you hear me? ;)

aprilsimnel's avatar

Oh, @augustlan. I hope you feel much better soon.

Dog's avatar

Sorry about the pain. May it settle down fast.

augustlan's avatar

Thanks, guys. It’s already much better… I even cleaned a little more! I took it slow, though.

Introverted_Leo's avatar

@augustlan: kudos to getting stuff done, even when you didn’t feel well!

======================= July 5th 2009====================

Heh, I haven’t started off the week in a while. Did anyone see some cool fireworks yesterday? I didn’t; I heard them outside, but I was too busy reading, lol.

Okay, so this week I did better at work. I’m picking up on new things pretty fast and getting the hang of the new changes. And, the one thing I was lacking the first time I worked their was a genuine appreciation for having the job in the first place. After applying for jobs elsewhere for a good chunk of the summer and not getting calls back…I’m very thankful I’m able to get hours at Amazing Jake’s. Plus, I’m not waking up super grouchy ‘cause I gotta go in like I used to do, so I think that’s improvement with my overall attitude. ^_^

Eh, this online class is suddenly giving us more thought-provoking assignements, lol. I’m trying to figure out a good analogy that would complete: “Taking an online class is like…” Seriously, I can’t think of any good analogies for this! Plenty of bad ones, but not good ones. So I’ve been putting off this assignment hoping something would come to me later, heh.

As for my story, I’m at a total of 52,281 words. So I guess this week I wrote…7,430 words. Yay!

Dog's avatar

@Introverted_Leo Great job on the story!
“Taking an online class is like having the knowledge come to me”
Lame but what the heck! :)

This week was a pathetic wash as far as actually painting. Barely anything accomplished. I did set up a store on bonanzle.com but no sales as of yet.

Health wise I am still working out.

That is it over here. Hope others have more to report!

Jeruba's avatar

Thanks for being first in and placing the header, @Introverted_Leo. My mind has been on other things and I have had a hard time remembering lately. What progress on your story! Do that a couple more times and you will have a whole novel. Fabulous! Glad you are also seeing something positive in your job. That’s a great report. Can you feel your muscles growing?

Taking an online class is like reading a book through a telescope.

@augustlan, accomplishing something is such a spur, isn’t it? Success feels great and shows you what you can do—which is always more than you thought. I’m so glad you are feeling better, too.

@Dog, I have had so many weeks like that. There are times when I just can’t get out of my own way. I think I even sabotage myself without meaning to. But I do believe those are cycles and they do bottom out. Hope next week is a better time for finding your rhythm.

I am feeling so energized by the prospect of ending my conventional working life that I just can’t believe it. Truly I think the sense of being oppressed by my job for so long has had more substantial consequences than I ever realized. It’s not the idea of working or the kind of work—I often give hours and hours to editing tasks just for the love of it and out of a desire to share what I know. It’s the environment. I will be so happy to leave it that I am almost beside myself with anticipation. Just 12 more weeks to go.

Meanwhile I am still working on my room and think I am about 2/3 of the way there. It is looking so much better, and I am feeling inspired by my success. I am taking little writing breaks and fluther breaks but giving most of my energy right now to this one big thing. And I expect to begin spending workout time at the Y very soon. So—big changes.

Bri_L's avatar

@Introverted_Leo – Great job. Your writing is awesome. And don’t worry about the analogies. Like my dad always said, analogies are like…..

@Dog – This is a first for you isn’t it??!?!?! Well we all know how difficult it is to wash a dog. No worries.

@Jeruba – With in 4 weeks of being laid off from my job, in this economy, I lost 35lbs and my high blood pressure went away. I started sleeping better at night. Was better to my family. It makes a difference. I am excited for you!

I am still loving this whole web page making thing. I just got a referral for a guy who is starting a company and needs a logo and web site. Who hoo.

cyndyh's avatar

Hi, folks. I got behind on this thread way way up there. I kept thinking I would read through it all and get caught back up but no. So, I’m just going to jump back in here.

I’ve been doing very little writing lately. There have been some great live shows I’ve been to lately and I spent a lot of time at a music festival and a month long film festival. As a result I’ve been distracted and written more about music lately than any other project I was working on before. I’ve been enjoying it but it’s a distraction all the same.

On the health front I’ve been doing better, though. I’ve started swimming laps again after spending years out of a pool. A few days a week I even walk to and from the pool (2 miles each way) as well. Sometimes I get started too late to do this and still make the lap-swim times, though. On those days I have to be lazy and drive to the pool.

This is the beginning of my 3rd month and I’ve slimmed down quite a lot. Although the scale is showing very little slow progress, my clothes are a lot looser and I have a crazy amount of energy lately.

Last week I swam 7.25 miles in 5 days at the pool. (It was closed the 4th and 5th.) This week I started with a bang. I swam 2.25 miles just today. Then I drove home (because I was lazy today :^> ) and mowed the lawn, walked to the library and grocery store, came home and made chili for dinner. A month ago I couldn’t have done that. If I’d been able to swim that far at all I would have just come home and passed out afterward. That fact that I did anything afterward is the real progress.

So, I’m shooting for a 10 mile week in the pool and a 20 mile week on my shoes. That should be doable. We’ll see. Cheers!

mangeons's avatar

Well, soon here I’ll be starting on my room. I just got home, so I’ll probably take a day or two off, and then, it’s organizing and cleaning time. I don’t want to, but I need too.

augustlan's avatar

I trained my first new moderator! The_Compassionate_Heretic has joined our merry little band.

Bri_L's avatar

@augustlan Congratulations!!!!

Dog's avatar

Now that totally ROCKS!

Bri_L's avatar

I didn’t get the logo work. His cousin’s wife did and a week before I found out about his looking. BUT he may need me for other work.

augustlan's avatar

Wow. Do you realize that this is the 548th response to this question?!?

@Bri_L I’m sorry to hear that. I’ll keep my fingers crossed for you!

I have some good news to share. I got a very part-time job! Doing exactly what I had in mind for my business, too. I’ll be doing some bookkeeping work for a contractor that my husband knows professionally… about 3 hours a week. I won’t be an employee, but an independent contractor and that perfectly fits my business model. I hope to use this as a jumping off point for growing the business.

Bri_L's avatar

@augustlan – YES!!! and that will pad and fuel your business experience!

Bri_L (12143