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14 January 2013 @ 01:37 am
Thinky Thoughts  
An important aspect of my time in India was having a lot of time alone to think about Life and other important things that are, indeed, important, but often seem to get buried in the business of day-to-day living. You know, the Big Picture Questions, the really scary ones that drive life, but are hard to really get a handle on. I'm not saying I got a real handle on them, but I DID have some time to think about what my goals are and what will make life meaningful and satisfying to me. This is, essentially, a massive tl;dr post, but is going here for mostly my own reference and your amusement, if you are that bored. Advice/suggestions on all fronts are welcome.

As often happens when I go abroad, I found myself thinking "oh dear gods, I need to do this more often!" However, since this is not a rare thought for me, it also led me to ask, "well, why DON'T I do this more often?" The answer is in several parts: work, money, and priorities. First off, I get a limited amount of time off from my job. It is certainly generous by American standards, but it is pretty pathetic by European standards and I do need to be careful about how I spend it. If I plan to spend a week at Gulf Wars and a week at Pennsic, it makes it hard to save up enough PTO to take this sort of vacation. Also, I have the sort of job where it is pretty difficult to take this kind of time off since it is structured to have someone in the office every day and my being gone for three weeks straight meant my coworker was in the office for three weeks straight, which did not make her a happy muffin. Money is the second component - I have a very good job, so money should NOT be a huge issue. I am whiny in that we are not even getting cost-of-living level raises the last few years and costs of premiums and pretty much everything else are going through the roof, but really I make more than enough for a household of one. My huge house is subsidized with roommates and the current ones are actually pretty reliable with the rent and utilities. Lastly, it is a matter of priorities. If I don't PLAN to go abroad, then I DON'T GO abroad. When I just took the jump and bought the ticket, I was committed. This meant giving up some fun things (book, fabric, Halloween parties, birthdays, major Knowne World events), but I made a choice to have this amazing experience instead. It was worth it. I have to remember that and make travel a priority.  
* To go abroad at least once per year
* To get to one of the coasts at least once per year (or combine for an extended international trip)
* To cross off my "I" country goals in the next 5 years or so - Italy, Ireland, Iceland
Progress thus far:
Work: I need to either work on re-structuring my work so my daily presence is less essential, even throughout formulary season or I need to seriously consider a new job where that is more of a possibility. A very attractive option is looking for a telecommuting job where I could work from anywhere where there is an internet connection and "work from home" across the globe. This would be a departure from my usual backpacker-type mode of travel since I would need a secure laptop, but is do-able and would mean I could go on extended trips a few times a year, less constrained by work demands or PTO limits. 
Money: I have finally hit my "rainy day" savings goal and locked most of it up in a CD, so money is simply a matter of budgeting and not yielding to every whim when fabric or books call to me. In the months I have been back, I am proud to say that I have been spending in a more appropriate manner and so hopefully I can keep it up and make my travel war chest grow
Priorities: I am thinking that perhaps I will not go to Gulf Wars this year or perhaps I will not actually do two weeks at Pennsic. We'll see. I think I will need to pick and that certainly I will need to more carefully evaluate how many and which SCA events I go to, since they suck both time and money. I like events, but spending a few days in Scotland is way cooler than any event. On the other hand, I have committed to going to Ireland this year with one friend and Prague next year with my mom. To this end, I got a frequent flyer credit card with my favorite airline which gets me an annual companion fare ticket. Get abroad and bring my friends!
Thoughts for the future:
* Carefully evaluate calendar and only commit to events that are a good value for my time, energy, and money
* Keep planning the trips that have been proposed and consider new ones, particularly Iceland and someplace warm.

I know I really need to get into better shape, but my two year membership at the gym is coming to an end and clearly that experiment, even with the "go or you'll be wasting money" carrot, has not really worked for me. I hate going, I hate the environment, and I don't really see any weight loss or fitness changes even when I go on a regular basis. At one point, I increased the weights I was lifting and I noticed I could dance longer at the Inferno without sucking wind, but neither of those things have a huge impact on my Real Life. I'm pudgy, but even when I was faithfully going three times a week and doing the elliptical for an hour and weight lifting, I never was down more than about five pounds. So, I need to do... something. I'm a little stuck as to what, though. My sister may be up for being a fitness buddy, but she's on the far west side and that involves wrangling the bebes as well as her. I've been thinking about maybe yoga, since that would incorporate some meditative time which could be valuable on other fronts as well, but as was pointed out, that lacks the cardio component. I have been thinking about getting back into rapier, but that only is one night a week. If I have a Sunday free and other people show up, it MIGHT be able to stretch to two, but that's hard to arrange. As far as diet goes, I'll never go ON a diet - this is more of an assessment of "the food that you eat" = your diet. I need to eat fewer carbs and more veggies - a not uncommon problem, but one my recent cholesterol test says I need to work on.
* Lose 10 pounds - I'm right at the top of the weight range that earns you a normal BMI for my height, I'd like to be in the middle.
* Improve general fitness/endurance
* Eat a more balanced diet
* Try new things - meat substitutes, using turkey instead of ground beef, etc.
Progress thus far:
Fitness: Uh. Yeah... Failure is not really progress. :P
Diet: I am being very honest with myself about the "How many vegetables have you eaten today?" question. I think this is a good first step, since I tend to over-consume carbs and fruits and underconsume green crunchy things. I've been trying some alternative proteins with some success - the turkey was undetectable in the chili and that's a great veggie-heavy dish already.
Thoughts for the future:
* Try, try again. I have to remember that the only absolute failure is not starting up again when I fall off the wagon.
* Always evaluate the shopping list: I like spinach and broccoli, I need to keep them in the house.
* Always evaluate the shopping cart: what is the proportion of green things? Whole grains? Lowfat proteins? Weird shit I am sort of afraid of but is prolly good for me?

One of the horrifying things about India was seeing how quickly trash piles up and how bad pollution can be. I need to work on my personal responsibility for world-wide carbon footprint/pollution/waste.This includes dietary components, since beef, dairy, and other proteins can be major contributors to greenhouse gas emissions and habitat destruction. I also travel a lot, so I need to be mindful about speed limits, car pooling, fuel choices, and road food choices. 
* Try a meatless day once a week.
* Recycle, recycle, recycle. Monitor my and household recycling more closely to make sure everything that can be recycled actually makes it into the bin
* Reduce! Really consider the impact when I buy things - can I make use of a larger package size with less packaging? Can I reuse the packaging? Which options have the smallest environmental impact.
* Use the flipping cruise control. I have a lead foot and I can eliminate or at least reduce the need to speed by planning my time better so I have plenty of travel time.
* Work to improve carpooling to SCA and modern events more than 30 minutes away unless schedules are incompatible for some good reason.
ETA: * Work on reusable containers - when dining out bring my own tupperwear for leftovers, bring the reusable shopping bags when I go shopping, and re-use plastic beverage cups when I am on the road. I have the facilities for this, I just need to remember to bring them!  
Progress thus far:
I have NPR channels and their locations from across the state posted in the car to promote low-stress driving and I have been using books on tape when NPR is not an option. I have been being better about not speeding... as much... still needs work... 
Thoughts for the future:
* Get more books on tape - I am less likely to feel that time in the car is wasted if I am learning something.
* I need to talk with the roommates about recycling - I have one who is resistant and that need to get fixed.
* Once the calendar has been evaluated and I have committed to events, get at least one carpooler per event.

I feel better when the house is clean and tidy. The house is almost never clean and tidy, There are roommates, but honestly, I am the biggest clutter problem, essentially because I have Too Much Shit. However, there are areas of the house that are NOT all my fault - the kitchen and the bathrooms, in particular - but I am really the only one who cleans them. The clutter and the time "wasted" cleaning makes me stressed out.
* Have Less Shit - it I have not used/eaten/worn it in a reasonable time frame, it needs to GO
* Have a place for all my shit - part of the problem is that I don't have a good system for some things - like my jewelry - so it ends up everywhere and messes grow faster than mold and I can't find the things I want under the yuck.
* Have Even Less Shit - once I have a better idea of what I actually use regularly, do another purge
ETA: * Put my Shit Away. Clean laundry in drawers, dirty laundry in bins. Books on bookshelves. Projects actively being worked on (w/in 48 hours) or put away. Do it, dummy.
Progress thus far:
* Really evaluating "do I need this?... do I already have this or similar at home?" before any purchase
* sending boxes of stuff to St Vinnie's or my sister
Thoughts for the future:
* Many more boxes to SvdP or my sister
* Pick one area that is an organizational disaster at least once a week and purge. Do two rounds around the house.
* Talk with the roommates about appropriate division of labor, including a schedule for cleaning the kitchen and bathrooms.

Romantic Life
Ugh. This is a hard one. I would like to find lurve and all that. I am a perfectly independent woman, but I really do enjoy having a partner to bounce ideas off of, to adventure with, to do stoopid, crazy things with, to debate politics with, and to enjoy *ahem* "activities" with... perhaps eventually to have a family with. I'm not really a casual-sex sort of girl, so I have fallen into a serial monogamy pattern, but so far, nothing has stuck.

Attempts at meeting people have not really been terribly successful. I'm not an easy woman to deal with and I do not have low standards, so this is sort of difficult. I don't meet a lot of people through my job - it's mostly women and I mostly interact with a pool of about two dozen. I am not a bar-goer. I'm reasonably gregarious, but not really the sort to just strike up a conversation in the grocery store. I am already busy enough I don't really want to add another hobby. I have tried internet dating with little success. (I'm actually pretty discouraged on that front - I recently had an audit of what people thought was my "best" photo for my profile, done by choosing who they would rather go out on a date with based on the profile pics -  the only one that got me positive ratings, even among my "target demographics" was the one with a lot of boobage. :( I do have great tracks of land, but I have better qualities, I promise...) My emails on the site are almost never returned, so I think I need to give up on that soon...

I seem to have three choices - change myself, lower my expectations, or give up trying and hope something falls in my lap. Option one is not likely to happen in any major way. Yes, this whole post is about things I would like to change about me and my life, but I will always essentially be a strong willed, intelligent, strange woman, prone to bouts of brilliance and/or slightly fey behavior. I'm a hard-sciences nerd who likes to play at being a seventh century Pict, I believe in scientific laws and magic, I want to be a pharmacist by day and an Inferno-going goth chick by night. I'm wonderful and I want someone who thinks I am wonderful too. As far as lowering my standards for a potential mate go - that's not terribly likely to be too movable either. At one point I was deluded into thinking I could get everything in one package and, as much as it would be nice to have someone who is a smart, funny nerd who is in head-over-heels, oooey-gooey, poetry-writing, flower-sending LURVE with me, I am just not the sort of girl that inspires that sort of reaction in a guy... or at the very least that the guys I am attracted to are not that sort of guy... (even if they have been that squishy about other women... gah!) I guess the realm in which I will compromise most readily is that I don't need the romantic comedy LURVE, but I do need a strong and genuine respect and love and an acceptance of my crazy ways... But as far as other standards go, I have no real criteria for height, age, physical characteristics, income, etc. I AM looking for intelligence, quick wit, a sense of wonder, for critical thinking... I suppose I do mainly look for people who lean to the left politically, but that is sort of part of "correct thinking" in my mind. :P I'm willing to entertain a conversation with someone with conservative views, but I am not sure how successfully I could live with that.  I know there is a bit of making inappropriate comparisons to a standard going on, and that I have been given reasonable advice on how to address that, but I have been thus far too weak to take it, so I keep hurting myself on that issue. (On the other hand, it is a positive in that it does remind me that my ideal expectations are not entirely unreasonable, if I'm not too stupid to recognize them.)  As far as giving up and just hoping something happens or accepting it if it doesn't - I am afraid that would pretty much be accepting that it won't. I'm not terribly likely to meet someone "on accident" and I don't know anyone right now who is single and a good prospect... On one hand, this would be a major revision to my life goals (-home, -family, - sex), but it could also be a positive in a new direction (+freedom, +travel, +time being Evil Aunti Eithni), but even acknowledging the positives, I'm not sure I am willing to resign myself quite yet.
* nerdtastic partner
* acceptance of being the spinster aunt
Progress thus far:
I've tried dating, getting set up, internet dating. Some good relationships, some really five star disasters. I have not had a date-date since I have been single this time, but neither have I run across any prospect that looked shiny enough to ask out, so that's sort of a chicken-egg problem. 
Thoughts for the future:
So completely not sure. :/

Yoiks. Work has been eating my soul. The job requirements keep getting harder, the staff keeps shrinking, the environment keeps getting more toxic. My coworker is desperately unhappy and needs more hours that they just can't/won't giver her and she takes it out on me, since I have enough to be "full time" and so have the benefits she cannot have, even though I am single and she has a husband, kid, and dogs. I know I should just walk away, but I feel an obligation to the people we serve. I also now have major obligations where I NEED a particular week off in July, and that has been approved, which makes me loathe to leave. In part, I know I have great job security because they can't replace me, but on the other hand that produces a lot of guilt because I know that if I walk, they won't be able to replace me in a timely manner, which could cause regulatory problems for the program and potentially mean we lose our contract and the whole thing could go under. :( But things are getting worse and the pay is going down and it is eating my soul. Also, my office is the freezing pit of hell. This leads to coming home exhausted every night and hating the world, which does not do good things for my diet, fitness, mental health, or happiness goals. 
* Try to identify the things that most make me miserable and try to fix them. Goal deadline of 6/30/13
* Review job opportunities in the field to create some exit strategies
* Modify and document parts of my job to make them easier to offload, either to reduce the work burden or to make it manageable upon my departure.
Progress thus far:
I've done a major overhaul of my job description, including a timeline of all the federal requirements, created P&Ps for many of the internal processes referenced in the job description. Asked for a corner office with a more appropriate temperature or a heater.
Thoughts for the future:
* I need to stick to this part of the life improvement plan and follow up on the goals
* Work on developing other alternative plans - what else could I do that would make me happy? What would meet my needs? Can I change my needs (financial and otherwise)? What options would that open up?

Mental Health
Quickly, because the hour grows late - I need more "me" time, more thinking time, more sleeping time, more reading time. I do not have a time machine. This means I need to reevaluate my time expenditure and make sure that, as with my financial budget, my time budget is meeting my needs and is in line with my goals. I need to track this and be accountable to myself.
* Seven hours of sleep per night
* Five hours of quiet pre-bedtime devoted reading time per week
* Three fitness sessions per week (see also fitness)
* Take up yoga or meditation or set aside specific thinky time on a regular basis to work through issues before they become stressors
Progress thus far:
I have been reading a number of books on Buddhist thought, subscribed to a Buddhist Bootcamp email list which are helping me direct my thinking into more positive routes and helping me identify areas where I am unhappy and why AND what I can do about it. I have looked into some yoga and have started looking at non-gym fitness options before my gym membership expires in March.
Thoughts for the future:
* Commit to a new fitness plan
* Keep thinking/learning/reading
* Track sleep and reading goals and keep working to meet them

Well, if you got this far, you now know more about what makes me tick, my goals and aspirations, my fears and failures, than the great majority of my friends and family. Congratulations? :P Hopefully it wasn't too much of a pity party and I am happy to take any suggestions or comments - I'm definitely a work in progress in need of some direction...

Oh! And because this is an epic long-term project that will take a huge, sustained commitment, I bought myself a promise ring. Every time I look at it, it reminds me to think about whether what I am doing is meeting my goals, how I could be meeting those goals, and whether I have recently examined if those are the RIGHT goals for this time and place. I am accountable to me.

Current Mood: determineddetermined
Kareinakareina on January 14th, 2013 11:43 am (UTC)
" I like events, but spending a few days in Scotland is way cooler than any event." Indeed, but attending an event while in Scotland is even cooler. I know, because I have.

One trick I used for housekeeping when last I had roomates was to set up a closed YahooGroups email list for us and use its calender function to send us automatic emails each week to remind us whose turn it was to do each task that week. We set up a reasonable rotation where a person was responsible for only one thing each week, and which thing that was rotated. We agreed to the rotation in advance, and no one needed to keep track of whose turn it was to do what because the weekly email told us. These days google calender can probably do that for you without the bother of creating an email group.
eithni: sewingeithni on January 15th, 2013 06:09 am (UTC)
Amen. The semester I lived in Northumbria I went to an event in Edzell Castle. It was amazing.

Regarding the scheduling, I don't think it will be too hard since there are only three of us, but I just need to have the "no, really, y'all are adults and I am not your mother" conversation with them.
jtdiii: Biojtdiii on January 14th, 2013 12:54 pm (UTC)
You are an amazing woman with a lot to offer, you just need to find the right nerd pool to select from... Possibly add a few science fiction or gaming conventions to your normal hunting grounds. Do any nearby bookstores or libraries offer singles nights?

Things that I would suggest though, you do tend to over commit on classes and activities. You can still do this, just choose classes that are likely to be heavily populated with targets of opportunity. Work on increasing the pool you are selecting from. Then, many nerds are shy, take the time to spot the ones who might be paying attention to you but are having trouble getting up the nerve. Encourage them subtlety... for some nerds subtle may be a two by four between the eyes. :)

Leverage the auntie network in all of these groups, have them ID those who are single and worthy of attention. There may be some you might otherwise miss.

You may have a few rough edges, but whomever proves worthy will be a very lucky man.

And at least there are more single nerdish men in the Madison area than there are women in the Hartford area... :)
eithni: greeneithni on January 15th, 2013 06:15 am (UTC)
Yeah, Madison has a fair share of geeks... I just scare the bejeezus out of most of them. :P I'm not a subtle woman and a too-shy guy is not going to cut it. They are cute, but I tend to roll over them like a steamroller, which does neither of us any good. I need a gregarious geek, but those ARE a rare commodity. That said, the auntie network is a good idea - I should try more of that. I am doing a little steam punk fun, so that's at least one area of opportunity.
(no subject) - jtdiii on January 15th, 2013 12:35 pm (UTC) (Expand)
Roxelana: averoxelana on January 14th, 2013 05:48 pm (UTC)
I totally and completely agree with jtdiii.
Compromising your standards will never make you happy. Prioritizing your goals in life (is it more important for you to travel or have a family. If you want children would you be willing to raise them alone.) will give you a better idea of where to focus your energies.
At the point where I decided that I was fine with moving someplace south and planting an orchard and being alone, I met Nathan. My co-worker introduced me to her next door neighbor – a former rocket scientist. He is everything I ever put on my list and he adores the crap out of me – even knowing that I’m crazy. And he’s perfectly happy moving south and planting an orchard as long as he can have chickens. I can add chickens to the retirement picture. My point is – if I had not prioritized my goals then I may have settled for one of those stellar failures I dated five years ago rather than focusing my energy on putting my finances in the correct place to have an orchard. I love my job, I love my guy, I love my home, I never have enough free time – but I am enjoying the journey. Enjoy the journey because otherwise life becomes a series of regrets and wasted time. And I really don’t see you wasting time :)
eithni: greeneithni on January 15th, 2013 06:21 am (UTC)
Yeah, I am certainly not wasting my time pining away at home! :) We haz plans to take over the world and all...

It just is something I would like to have in my life and I am pretty sure would fall off the list under my other hobbies/obligations if I don't work at it. I have enough on my plate that meeting new people - either friends or romantic prospects - is not easy. I think if I straighten out the work thing so I am not so flipping tired every night when I come home, that will go a long way toward freeing up some mental energy.

As for the kids without mate question - I am certain I COULD do it and even have a Plan as to how to make that work, but I'm not yet committed to the idea that I WANT to go that route. And, you know, kids are not something one can be wishy-washy about, especially if you are the sole parent. :P My mom has even been advocating for that option, though, so it's not the table and under consideration. All the more reason to jam in lots of extra travel in the next few years.
JinglyMushroomjinglymushroom on January 14th, 2013 07:58 pm (UTC)
On the job front, have your considered Epic? I know they say they work people into the ground, but some people do seem to survive. They pay well, give bonuses, allegedly try to make work pleasant or make up for the negative sides by having variety and being open to your individual needs/desires... They help you travel if you work there long enough. One of my pals worked there probably for about four years (or so I guess, knowing he's in his twenties -- I think 26), didn't live too shabbily, and saved up enough money to now live in San Francisco for a year without working at all, but doing a bunch of hobbies.
I feel like your capabilities and expertise would work there and since your job already seems to attempt driving you into the ground at least once a week...

I really wish I had something to offer on the fitness point. If we were neighbors, I could try to drag you out for walks or bike rides or climbing the jungle gym in the park... We could jog or jump rope... Alas, I'm pretty sure our schedules and distance wold make that more than difficult. How about riding bicycle to do errands on warm days? Or, depending on the distance, riding bicycle to/from work on warm days? That would hit the environment/driving points, too.
eithni: PharmDeithni on January 15th, 2013 06:24 am (UTC)
I've thought about Epic and they are an option to keep in mind, but I am ideally looking for a position with LESS stress, not more. :P

Thanks for the fitness offer - my sister is interested in joining a gym, so maybe we'll be able to work that out. Regular exercise dates might be hard to schedule, but we should definitely do some active stuff together, maybe once the weather warms up! I miss the Masha!
(no subject) - jinglymushroom on January 15th, 2013 09:34 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - eithni on January 16th, 2013 03:52 am (UTC) (Expand)
corvusjoyous: crowcorvusjoyous on January 14th, 2013 09:26 pm (UTC)
I saw the ring, and was wondering what it meant... Good symbol, good reminder. My tiger eye necklace is a similar purpose of reminding me who and what I am, looking toward who and what I want to be.

I will have 3 months off, though it will be tied to a sprat. You are certainly not allergic to sprats though. Perhaps we could work out a date night and hit a couple of your health goals (and mine!) Maybe do some sort of exercise (when I'm able again) and cook a veggie-centric and/or try-something-new meal together once a week? If my routine settles out well, I may be able to do some of the meal prep/legwork during the day (for at least the next 3 months, before work & school start again).

Anyway, I think your goal list and thinky-thoughts are AMAZING. This is the sort of thing I wish everyone would do on a yearly basis or so. It sounds like the trip was very good for you, and I applaud your efforts to identify what you need. Prioritizing some time for you, and cost/value assessments of how you spend your time seem like the crux of it to me.

Good luck; I am excited to see what comes of this in the next year or so! It is hard to imagine you getting even more awesome than you already are, but if you accomplish these things and add more satisfaction & relaxation to your life, I predict that you will rock even more!
eithni: greeneithni on January 15th, 2013 06:27 am (UTC)
I think dinner/exercise/podling admiration sounds like a lovely plan. Once the little one is here and you have something that looks like a schedule, we can talk specifics.

Thanks for the words of encouragement. Like I said, I don't have a clear plan on all of the above and certainly don't have all the answers, but I think just getting them down is a step in the right direction.
grnjenny / Jennifer Carlsongrnjenny on January 14th, 2013 11:04 pm (UTC)
Agreed, your "thinky-thoughts" are indeed amazing.

Except for the job/money part, I'm pretty much tracking alongside you right now. (my new job is full of awesome, but I'm still struggling with money issues)

health, lurve, home (crap), fitness... yeah. hooboy, do I hear ya. blargh. indeed.
eithni: darkladyeithni on January 15th, 2013 06:28 am (UTC)
Bad Peers Support Group? (with margaritas? ;) )
(no subject) - cassbunny on January 22nd, 2013 09:17 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - eithni on January 25th, 2013 07:54 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - cassbunny on January 22nd, 2013 09:16 pm (UTC) (Expand)
DameJ: Moaidamej on January 15th, 2013 12:50 am (UTC)
I could say very similar things about travel (my hubby and I have prioritized trips abroad over SCA events for the past few years) and my job (although mine is far less essential to the good of society than yours is). I have made very different choices with regards to romance, and I suspect that is largely due to differences in our families of origin. Your mother had the strength and courage to walk away from a toxic relationship and never settled, and so you and I may have very different concepts of what is acceptable compromise in a relationship.

Consider that working on becoming more tolerant of others' shortcomings is not necessarily compromising or lowering one's standards. You are an extremely hardworking and energetic individual, and there are very few people in our society who could match your work ethic. There are many flavors of nerd, and you may need to look for one with a bit less overlap with your interests than you envisioned. I don't have any suggestions for new ways to meet people. You are far more outgoing than I am, and you already encounter a great deal of humanity with an open mind and an open heart. I just wonder sometimes if you perceive them through a filter that could be recalibrated slightly.
eithni: darkladyeithni on January 15th, 2013 06:43 am (UTC)
You guys are actually part of the inspiration for the travel resolution. :) You seem to ALWAYS be planning a trip or just back. That is lovely and envy-inducing and there is no reason I can't be making my friends jealous too, I just need to prioritize.

I hear what you are saying, but it's hard. I am a very active, productive person and I want to see that in my close friends too - it's part of the reason I have the apprenti I do - they are all clever, funny, productive people, despite all being quite different from one another. I don't really care what sort of nerding the potential target displays, just as long as it be something they are passionate about and that it is in some way creative. I can't abide the six-hours-a-day-in-front-of-a-computer-wargaming sort of nerd, but anything with a product is fine, whether that be costuming or miniatures or what have you.

The other aspect of this that makes me look for people with a similar level of... let's call it energy... is that I need to be challenged by a mate - I need someone who will really give me a run for my money in at least one or two areas. I do not tend to woo peaceably, as it were.

I'm keenly aware that I have plenty of flaws and I'm not looking for someone without foibles, but I do need someone who can keep up enough to keep me from getting bored or, even worse, always letting me get my way. :P
Aaron (Rusty) Lloydrustmon on January 15th, 2013 01:06 am (UTC)
love and hugs. I'm afraid I can offer anything more than what the others have said, but one of things I try to do every day is live by the mantra of 'never settle'. I think when you look in the mirror, you'd kick yourself if you lived below your standards.
eithni: darkladyeithni on January 15th, 2013 06:46 am (UTC)
Thanks... Yeah, settling is not on the table. Like I said, I'd rather accept the role of spinster aunt than take just someone to avoid being alone. I'm getting some decent practice in torturing the niblings and Miss Em, so I am pretty comfortable with the role of Evil Aunti Eithni if it comes to it.
(no subject) - cassbunny on January 22nd, 2013 09:22 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - eithni on January 25th, 2013 07:52 am (UTC) (Expand)
raventhourne on January 15th, 2013 06:34 pm (UTC)
Hugs and luv!

I can't really add to any of it but I believe in you! You can do what ever you set your mind to.
eithni: jumpingeithni on January 16th, 2013 03:43 am (UTC)
Thanks! Support and cheerleading count as help!
valkyr8: Buffyvalkyr8 on January 15th, 2013 09:56 pm (UTC)
Also re-organizing
I find that making changes is a good thing, but starting small is a better thing. You have a lot of things here and doing them all at once could be daunting. If you can make small, daily, changes that would be a better choice. Either that or prioritize and focus on a major thing first (like the job) and then once that is settled, focus on other stuff.

Writing them down is a good reminder of what your goals are.
eithni: greeneithni on January 16th, 2013 03:43 am (UTC)
Re: Also re-organizing
Actually, for me, many concurrent goals are reinforcing, as long as none of them are a huge stretch. I am WAY more likely to eat a healthy dinner after working out, for example. If I go home and nap instead, the pizza boy starts looking like my best friend. :P Work is a major thing, but any major change needs to be tabled for a few months, and I don't want to wait that long, since I am afraid inertia might set in.

By and large, these are things that I think are good choices and important so I don't have too much trouble adhering to them, as long as I remember them. Some I had been working on previously and need to return to, others are new, but still feel worthwhile. The hardest for me is the fitness one - I need to either find a better accountability mechanism or different activities or both.
Ysoltysolt on January 15th, 2013 11:52 pm (UTC)
Hugs for you. I don't have any sage advice to offer. I wish I did! Magic wand, *ding*, make it all better.

Everything you wrote makes sense. It sounds like you have a good grip on your process, and have reasonable, doable goals to move yourself forward. I'm glad you included your heart as well as your brain! That's so important.</p>

If you ever want to talk about Buddhist things, I'm available. I'm not "an expert" or anything - just a practitioner. There are several Buddhist temples/centres in Madison, perhaps one is reasonably nearby...?

eithni: Namasteeithni on January 16th, 2013 03:36 am (UTC)
Thanks for the support - that's the most important, I think. I have not really done much with the Buddhist thought yet - just some reading and some personal reflecting, but I think it is good for me, so I would be happy to discuss sometime. :)Thanks for the support - that's the most important, I think. I have not really done much with the Buddhist thought yet - just some reading and some personal reflecting, but I think it is good for me, so I would be happy to discuss sometime. :)
cayswann: helpingcayswann on January 16th, 2013 10:15 pm (UTC)
Fitness ideas: Have you ever tried ATS bellydance? (American Tribal Style) I *adore* the group element, and it is THE most satisfying way to sweat I've ever found. There's five instructors in Milwaukee, most notably Jennifer Nolan from Tamarind (a dance troupe), and one slightly closer to you in Hartland. I'm not sure if you have the time/bandwidth to go that far for a class [and that affects your environment goals/issues], but ATS (to me) is AMAZING. (See fcbd.com under Instruction > FCBD Sister Studios... that's the certification I'm pursuing.) There's also DVDs and lots of material on youtube, if you wanted to check it out.

Romance: I *loathe* online dating sites. LOATHE. I went with "accept being the spinster aunt" and then accidentally started dating an old SCA friend. It seems to be working. It's NOT advice (heavens), but just a solidarity fist bump with ya!

Otherwise, this is just a HUGE set of hugs and snuggles from Caid. *smooches*
eithni: greeneithni on January 17th, 2013 12:30 am (UTC)
I did some belly dance a zillion years back, when I was still shiny-new in the SCA. I liked it, but it no longer is really appealing to me. I did recently run into my old instructor, so that is a possibility, but on the back burner.

I don't mind the internet dating - though I like the OK cupid format better than the eHarmony format - but there's just a lot of stupid to wade through. :P I wish there was a DatingForGeeks.com... that would rock! For now, I just poke my nose in periodically to see if it has anything interesting for me.

Good to hear from you and I hope all is well out there!
reneekytokorpireneekytokorpi on January 19th, 2013 05:37 am (UTC)
These are all very reasonable goals. I don't have input for how to reach them, really, but I might steal some of the health and me time ones to focus on for myself. :)
eithni: jumpingeithni on January 19th, 2013 06:32 am (UTC)
As long as we can be mutual supports, that's great!
(no subject) - reneekytokorpi on January 19th, 2013 08:11 pm (UTC) (Expand)