A tired, aggravated Monday morning, but I am very lucky #gratitude

This is what I was thinking very early this morning, listening to the torrential downpour while cuddling next to Sir Henry. We’re safe and warm and snuggly!, I cooed to him. Sure corporate America hates me; I’m an over 40, non nepotism-beneficiary, vagina owner. I’m still a lot luckier than many. I don’t forget to be grateful for the good stuff, which is quite often the simple stuff, the basic human needs and comforts. Do you have heat? hot water? a comfortable bed and warm blankets? healthy food to eat? If you have all of that, things aren’t so bad.

iPage sucks, and I’ve let as many people know about this today as possible

Then I got up and had to deal with my former website host, unexpectedly. That took quite awhile, and it was after another similar session just months ago. There are only two other reviews on Google and they’re both 1-star, lol. All told Charlie and I sat at the table 3½ hours. We also found out it’d have been better to transfer my line over earlier! My iPhone service ended today but I have to change my sim card and will have to wait to receive it and pray there are no technical difficulties. Like, I’m pretty sure AT&T wants to make you pay to get it changed, and I’m not at all handy with crap like this (though I did figure out how to change both the batteries in my Polar heart rate monitor recently).

I will also have to change my phone number and get a 503 area code, like I was saying on Facebook. This is because my AT&T account is already closed and I’d need a temporary activation to port out, which they’d like to charge a total of $70 in parting fees for. I’d been advised in 2015 by a 10-year PDX veteran that it’d be better to keep my 646, NYC area code as long as possible, saying locals are impressed by a New York association. I certainly have not found that to be the case. And my situation is such that it’s better to take the time to change my phone number on all my online accounts, however many times that comes up, over paying $70 and having to suffer through more phone calls through AT&T. Dealing with one cell phone provider at a time is enough! The last agent I talked to had the grace to sound embarrassed when she was forced to try to push television service on me at the end of the call. #asIF

Also this winter sure sucks weather wise

I wasn’t exaggerating earlier this winter. According to The Oregonian it was the coldest January since 1979. Plus we had snowpocalypse as well as other periods of snow induced house arrest. And now the torrential rains! Generally it hadn’t rained in extended periods before. You’d have breaks where the skies would brighten and you could get out and do stuff. This year it’s been a lot heavier and significantly longer, not Portland mist but more like gloomy, New England rain. I’ve really felt like I brought the weather with me! But of course that’s silly because if I did there wouldn’t have been a 2-year delay.

It’d have been really nice if at least we’d had half way decent weather for Sam’s visit. Walking around and hanging out in nature is really the best this area has to offer (and it’s Extreme Budget friendly), but there’s loads of things we haven’t done because it’s been so consistently rainy: Multnomah Falls, the Chinese Garden, walking along the waterfront, Tanner Springs Park, walking around the Pearl.

We did manage to get outside the portion of the one day it was good weather, Friday. Even the Japanese Garden was distinctly underwhelming though, with all the construction going on. The fish ponds were opaque swamps of pea soup too! I’m not kidding. I pointed to an indistinct, orange blob and said, That’s a really beautiful fish, if you could see it. They should really have a reduced admission for off season if it’s like that. Next time I’d just as soon walk on the trails around the zoo, in Forest Park, for free. I think it’s only worth admission starting mid March or so.

We’ve still had a really nice visit

We got in:

  1. Deschutes
  2. The Japanese Garden
  3. 23rd Ave
  4. Dick’s Kitchen & a good “home party”
  5. Short Cuts” at the art museum, a film festival, curated set of 6 animations. They made a point to not include any American films, so as to provide more of what might not otherwise get seen outside of animation competitions. It was excellent, I thought.
  6. Powell’s
  7. Portland City Grill for happy hour – they are so expensive otherwise! And anyway this time of year it’s dark later. Charlie was looking at the regular menu just for fun and announced that the shrimp cocktail appetizer is $32. We both laughed. We got there just a smidge early for the start of happy hour and were lucky to score a round table. I don’t know how anyone ever manages to get a booth. You probably need the right connections, lol.

The plan had been to meet around midday for Pittock Mansion, but we’re both tired for different reasons. Today will instead be lazy, inward and teetotaling kind. Our last stint of hanging out is probably tomorrow! It went by so fast… I’ve been amazed to have met two long-time blog friends for the first time ever in Portland. I’ve known both Sam and Ursula for about ten years, through the online Ashtanga world. Didn’t think people actually visit Portland unless they work for one of the maybe three, functioning corporations here, LOL. I’ve been especially happy about it because I’m so isolated here, normally.

I’m going to relax, read and then work out in the late afternoon. I’ve gotta work on a creative schedule for the end of the week. I need to get back to the concept work for my logo project and schedule some drawing, painting and illustration.

I’m lucky! I can relax on this gloomy day.

Forgot to post Wednesday’s workout

Usually I don’t, but then having a house guest is rare! So far I only had one person visit for a single night, and that was just over a year ago.


This was Julia’s Valentine’s workout, which was ok but not one of my faves, so I won’t bother to back & detail it out retroactively.

Henry’s a high-maintenance feline

Didn’t work out yesterday, but I most likely will later today, once I recover a little more¹. Unfortunately, Henry drove off my guest. I’ve got the use of two rooms sequestered behind the cat gate upstairs, but he grew up in studio apartments and will not easily accept being shut out of any room…, not when he’s in wakey-wakey mode in the early morning. Charlie offered to lend his room, which is beyond the gate. Henry will often meow and scratch from right behind, especially if he hears C start to get up & hasn’t managed to roust me yet, but there’s more of a buffer zone.

But there were points available for a business hotel close-in, in the northeast. In the future I’ll ask visitors if they mind opening up the door for the cat in the morning. If there’s any issues I’ll know to do the bedroom swap from the get go.

There were a couple times in The Hovel and The Hotel when I tossed him in the bathroom during the night for some offense. I’d usually “break” and let him out again early because he’d make so much noise in protest, along with tossing stuff off the shelves or unravelling the toilet paper.

¹ You know when you start one of those benders that begins at lunch at keeps going? LOL. I didn’t expect it but it was fun. The weather is absolute crap this week, but yesterday was our one peek of sun for the duration, and we spent some time outside: a stroll around the Japanese Garden, a bit underwhelming in the off season but still nice; relaxing at an outdoor table at Barista; a long lunch at Dick’s Kitchen. We were both tired but managed to enjoy ourselves. Hopefully my buddy is nicely tucked in and will snooze most of the day. It’s back to overcast and murky, which lends itself…

So… just did my seated meditation. I’m not going to start the next hermetics exercise until Thursday, as planned. I’m just going to relax and maybe do a mid afternoon workout.

Victory #HIIT #reps & #yoga #workout

I missed both working out AND meditating yesterday. I’d been planning to get to both before all the drama. However I got back to both today & am very happy to report:

The easel has been successfully extracted from enemy territory!

I can’t believe she tried so hard to give the one thing away that I said was still important to me, but I shouldn’t be surprised. It’ll be waaaaaay less than the $600 last quoted by a UPS team that was being encouraged to take it off her hands. And now I can discard the check that’s on its way. I think I’ll burn it.

I’ve told my friend Cathy that assuming Charlie and I can figure out how to put it back together again (he’s pretty handy), the first piece created on it will be dedicated and on its way to her.

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Power Strength by Jamie B

Warmup: (10/30) x5 rounds jump rope. 3:20

Mix Circuits (perform 3 rounds on first set before moving on to second)
Round 1 —- 50:10
Round 2 —- 30:10
Round 3 —- 12 reps

Time = about 32 (forgot to time specifically)

Set 1: (set 13 24” elv) I’d maybe try 16″ if I had it. I’m not too good on vertical height with jumping! Even taking my 5’2″ stature into account.

1. Regular DL 40
2. Box Jumps
3. Squat touching butt to bench Top DL 40
4. Squat Jumps
5. Wide Leg DL 40

Set 2: (no vest)
1. Push-up, Handstand, Plank
2. Drag Curls (bicep curl position, while curling arms up, keep weights close to body pulling elbows behind) 26lbs
3. Pull-ups Archer Push-up
4. Wide Hammer Curls 26lbs
5. Chin-ups Tricep Push-up

Combos (HIIT at 50:10 x3) 18:30min
with vest both sets

Set 1: (vest)
1. Alt Curtsey Lunge + OH Tricep Extension 20
2. Narrow Squat + Back Row 30
3. Alt Knee Lift + Lateral Raise 20

Set 2:
1. Chest Press + Leg Raise (raise legs at same time as chest press up) 30 Lowered from 40 cause I forgot to give myself 15sec for the change intervals! Also forgot to take vest off
2. Bicep Curl to Shoulder Press 30
3. alt Side Plank Row press + Leg Lift (side plank position, weight in hand, pull up to row while raising top leg) 10 per hand first 2 rounds, upped to 15 the 3rd. I figured out I can avoid hand pain by putting the supporting hand on the floor rather than staying on the dumbbell.

“Death by Dumbbells” (by Scott Herman Fitness)- HIIT at 30:20 4x
Time = 18:20
with vest for all but move 5

1. Dumbbell Squat 40
2. Dumbbell Renegade Row 30 Bent over, fast alt row
3. Dumbbell Burpee 20
4. Dumbbell alt T Push-Up (alt T raises with push-up in between) 20
5. Dumbbell star Toe Touch abs 10 alt sides

Burnout: AMRAP 5 reps per move 5 mins
Score: 2 rull rounds + 5 tricep push-ups

1. Tricep push-ups
2. Squat jumps
3. Wide Push-up, handstand, plank 
4. Box jumps

(Time – 1:28)


About 15min

Too poor for friendships

Just did my morning sit & banishing ritual practice, but before that I sent Juliet an email I’d been putting off. I cannot go to the triple 50 birthday party in Nashville! I’m way too poor. When Ch offered to get me a plane ticket, I was just getting ready to start at the latest menial job, and I was counting on saving some money for things like cabs, dinners and other entertainment. You need money to hang out! If only they’d meant the 3-days a week they’d promised. Perhaps I should’ve tried to negotiate, but when I’d tried to get reimbursed for at least a couple hours after a last minute cancelled shift at the last place they really doubled down on the abuse.

The people who are paid the least have to work the hardest, and they also suffer the most abuse.

As a corollary, those who speak up in those conditions suffer immediate consequences. If your opinion were important in the slightest a company would not immediately disregard the schedule described during the interview. That’s just the way it goes. I used to stick up for and support those I saw getting abused in the workplace in NYC. I was really popular with the mailroom people, with the cleaning staff… Unfortunately this attitude has not helped me, karmically, on the west coast.

Anyway I kept moving “look for plane tickets” in my iCal. It came up again today… How much money would I want to bring with me? Considering I haven’t seen these long term friends of mine in two years, I’d want to be able to let loose. In the old days I know I’d arrive with about $400 cash.

The chances of my earning any money at all before the end of the year are slim. I haven’t been posting in Craig’s List for awhile because the Portland page resulted in only one client, and I totally lost money on that set of illustrations. That’d have been ok it they led to new clients but it did not. This morning I looked in the ads for creatives. I saw one for chainsaw artist in Sherwood. They’ve got a bunch of old trees and logs they want made into art, but they don’t have much money. They want to pay in meat, lol. Not that I know how to carve with chainsaws but that’s a pretty typical listing.

If I got lucky enough to make some money before the end of the year I could check out the ticket prices then, but it’s probably not going to happen.

Eventually I may learn that listening to my body is more important than maintaining a weekly exercise quota

If I’d just taken the day off Saturday, the first morning I woke up with a sore knee, I’d probably have been better off. But no! I had to get in my five days, and now I’ll need the larger part of a week off.

Yesterday’s yoga did make it worse, though it felt good and beneficial while I was practicing. I’d been thinking maybe I’d just do yoga & no skipping Monday & Tues and take Wed/Thur off, while training at my new job. Nope! Instead it’s four days in a row. (I think. I’ve done it before very occasionally however & did not “die”.)

Despite the fact that I’m writing about it, I’m not all bent. On the plus side, it’s good to have “light weeks” every 4-6 weeks of training. I’m not good about doing this! I never even considered the concept until I got ever-so-briefly into Beachbody workout DVDs.

This post is a documentation rather than a complaint. There’s a little lament in there though, over the fact that I’m still overtraining at times when I know better from years of experience. I’m going to try to sit for 20min today, later, and I’ll lay on the dinosaur to stretch out my back & shoulders.

Dear Toby & Tom, Love you guys! 🙂

Had a great time visiting my from-NH friends yesterday, close to their place on N Mississippi. I do like that neighborhood. I’d have definitely considered living there if I’d gotten a job in the NE. Went to Radar for brunch. The cocktails were delicious; food was delicious & filling, conversation was fun & our table was perfect. Hung out a bit after at their place after and they gave me a gift bag that made me feel really spoiled.

The best thing about the required fitness break is that I have a little extra time to chill in the morning. I’m ready to start drawing goddesses! I’m gonna log 15 hours this week.


OK I did a quick #primary anyway, #ashtanga #yoga

I wouldn’t recommend a big brunch & cocktails right before ashtanga, but at least I waited an hour. I was just lounging, after we got back from N Mississippi. (OMG absolutely lovely & spot on bday gifts from friends T&T!)  C was doing chores. I wanted to get up & move my body so I did. Marichy C and D were a little nauseated, as was supta kurmasana, but it worked out. No ticks today. Was quick.

Heart rate tends to be higher later in the day & I had an ok time practicing because of that.

I think no skipping for at least two days… Knees.



Sunday rest day in the interminable PDX rainy season

There IS this collusion of the locals to claim they love the rain & never, ever, ever complain about it. It’s weird! I do love it when sleeping (or just lounging in bed) though. This I will admit. I’m under a flat roof and that amplifies the musical, soothing sound.

This morning I woke up with a somewhat sore right knee, the right, same as yesterday, AND a sore left foot! Both are a little better now than when I first got out of bed, but we’re leaving for a brunch with friends in two hours. Also it’s a new week so I can rest today, but I’ll have to exercise on one of the days I’m working downtown, which means early evening. I have to be on the 8:26am bus for the shorter ride, the trip down, because the next later bus would put me in danger of being late.

The thing is, I’d like to fully enjoy the days I’m going downtown. I’m done my shifts at 2:30pm so I can do a little grocery shopping, have some lunch, stop at a brew pub etc. I have an hour to kill anyway before the bus, and four before the last Cinderella 51 of the evening. Hmmm… Maybe I’ll only work out 4x this week. Won’t kill me.