Another week down! It went fast and I don’t feel like I got too much done, but such is the nature of #momlife. …
i'm an adult
Coffee Digest is kind of a dumb name for this, but it was the only thing I could come up with. What I mean by it is: grab your morning cup of coffee and think back over my week with me! And if a snappier name for this weekly digest ever comes to me I’ll be sure to swap it out without notice. Kidding! I think.
And just like that, it’s 2017. No, there is no baby news, so don’t ask me, because you might just get your head bitten off. (But, teehee, he’s got the hiccups right now, so at least that’s entertaining!)
I haven’t exactly been the most consistent blogger in the past year…or since I really started this thing…but I’m hoping to change that this coming year. After all, what better time is there for me to be ambitious than when I’m about to push a tiny human out of my body and, you know, be in charge of caring for its needs 24/7? New motherhood? How hard can it be? The baby needs to learn to work around my routine. Come on.
But really. In spite of how crazy it seems to be making resolutions at 40 weeks and 2 days pregnant, I’m doing it anyway. Because I always like to have something to work toward, and it will be nice (theoretically…in my head…right now…) to have goals to look forward to when I’m sleep-deprived, unshowered, and covered in baby goo.
Here’s what I’d like my 2017 to look like, personally-speaking:
- I really would like to get this blog off the ground. I’m still deciding what that means, though. Probably a re-design, and maybe a new name to boot, but that’s still up in the air. I like to talk about myself, is the problem. And I’m having trouble picking a coherent theme. Because I like to talk about everything about myself. But still! I might try monetizing. Joining the ranks of the 1,000,000 mommy bloggers out there. Yay.
- Speaking of monetization, I have a fab idea for an e-book. Because I’m a lame sellout. Details to come, but how awesome would it be to have a guidebook for pregnancy, with checklists of food and exercises, and to-do’s for each week? Hey, I’d drop a few bucks for that.
- I’m going to simultaneously complete BookRiot’s Read Harder challenge and read 10 books from my ClassicQuest list. I know I won’t be able to keep up with my monthly “packet” reading, but I can at least work on chipping away slowly at my ClassicQuest. Audiobooks are completely permitted here.
- I’m going to completely nail this pre-baby body thing via GymnasticBodies. I won’t bring you down with my pregnancy body feelz, because I’m trying to remember that my body is doing the hard work of growing a human being and to let it do what it wants to do, but I’ll be honest with you — I’m ready to claim it as my own again, in both the I-can-drink-alcohol sense and the fitness sense. So, y’all? I’m super excited. I received the GymnasticBodies Foundation I Series for Christmas and then bought the Thrive nutrition program with some extra Christmas money. I’ve seen it work wonders in others, and have no doubt that it will be great for me.
- I’m going to kill a No-Spend month or six. I came across this pretty cool Goals spread for my bullet journal and of course had to copy it to a tee. Whoever set it up was proposing a No-Spend month every other month…which might be an unattainable goal for me…but why not try? The first one is scheduled to start tomorrow. Huzzah.
- I’m also going to kill some 30-day focuses. No coffee, no sugar, no alcohol, NaNoWriMo, and daily short stories. Fun, fun, fun. Not all at once, of course. Ha! I can’t even imagine. I’d be the dead woman churning out words like a zombie. And of course I’ll write about my experiences herrrrrre.
- I’m going to knock out some 40 Before 40 goals. Yeah, there’s a 40 Before 40. Since I am no longer qualified to work on my 30 Before 30 list. I’ll give you all the deets in a separate post, though. Something to look forward to!
- I’m going to watch all of the 2016 inductees into the National Film Registry. I didn’t do so well with Movie Night last year, but I’ve got a list to work through this time, sooooo…
- I’m going to make it a point to travel, gosh darn it! Everywhere from Valley of Fire to the Grand Canyon to, possibly, the country of Georgia. I’ve got ambitions this year. Baby H. is going to be a travel baby.
Of course, I’m also going to be a mom (!), which means I have a few baby resolutions; namely:
- Be the best mom ever. Is that too much to strive toward? Okay, fine. Be the best mom I can be for Baby H. Learn on the job. Be present. Practice Montessori-style parenting. Don’t be a sanctimommy, but also maintain my standards.
I guess that’s the only mom resolution I have for now. Does that make me awful? Meh. My kid will have a magical childhood whether or not I’m a Pinterest mom who makes cake pops from scratch for his first birthday.
By the way, if you want a refresher of what I resolved to do last year, you can see it here. I’d say I did 30% well. Uh, literally. Of 10 resolutions, I completed about three of them. I haven’t managed to push out a kid, but trust me — I woulda by now if I coulda. The thing is fully-baked and too comfortable, at this point. My blogging lagged, my Russian is non-exisistant, and the Norway trip has been pushed to the future, only because by the time we did have the chance to take it, I was too pregnant to go. But I have drastically cut back on my alcohol intake — not exactly by choice, of course, but I’ll claim a success where I can — and I did pretty good at maintaining a consistent exercise and wake-up routine this year.
So maybe last years’ failures mean I won’t kill my resolutions for this year, but it’s always nice to at least think about getting myself out of the rut of the everyday* and striving for self-betterment. If it means I get a few books read and movies watched in the process, I will take it.
*Please note the correct usage of “everyday.” This may turn into a ranty post in the future. Or maybe I’ll just swallow my pride and move on.
What I Read
- I’ve slowly been reading through the Drop Caps U book, The Wreath. It’s set in 13th or 14th-century Norway, which is nuts. Just a really cool look into how things were back then. (It was actually written in the early 20th century, so it’s historical.)(Obviously, otherwise it would be way more dry.) Right now the main character, Kristin Lavransdatter, has just entered a convent for a year because she doesn’t feel like getting married to her betrothed, and because she’s sort of unreasonably at the center of scandal back in her hometown. Poor Kristin.
- I started Yaqui Delgado Wants to Kick Your Ass this week, which has been pretty much depressing through and through. It’s about a girl who moves to a new school and starts getting bullied by a girl she doesn’t even know. Her grades are starting to suffer, but she doesn’t feel like she can tell anyone about what’s going on. Cue Emily getting depressed. I really need to pick up a light, fun romance after this.
- And speaking of books that make me depressed, Where Things Come Back. I really enjoyed it, but again–heavy subject matter. Seriously. Let’s get something cheery in me.
What I Ate
- So I made a bunch of steak salad jars, but I haven’t been enjoying them as much as I did the Cobb salad. I think I’m sick of spinach, and there’s not quite enough dressing…I dunno.
- I also threw together a pot of one of my all-time favorites, Mexican Vegetable Soup, and have been enjoying it for dinner every night since. Don’t be fooled by its simplicity. This soup is packed with flavor. And, heh, spice, if you accidentally throw too much crushed red pepper in. (Ooh, I bet it would be fantastic with a dollop of sour cream that I don’t have any of right now.)
- That pizza in the photo! I made that! It’s supposed to be a heart made out of pepperoni, but baking broke it. Oops.
- Remember how I wrote a piece on nitro coffee last week? Well, I was intrigued enough that I had to try it for myself. One of the local donut spots serves Stumptown nitro, so I picked up a glass. (And of course I had to get a donut or two while I was there. Heh heh.) Emily’s Quick Review: pretty to watch, but meh to drink. It just tastes like cold coffee.
What I Watched
- Slowly watching through Mad Men Season 4. I think I’m only 2 episodes in right now, because, well…
- Because there were two episodes of The Bachelorette on this week. I’m ashamed to say I’ve joined a bracket. But I’m mostly slaughtering–I’m in second place after three rose ceremonies. I’m considering writing a piece on the ridiculousness of these shows, but maybe I should just keep my thoughts to myself on this one. The abridged version: using sound clips out of context to hype episodes and create drama. I’m guessing Chad whistled exactly twice, and they’re recycling that stupid whistle as he “stalks” his way back to the house the guys are at. Seriously. Seriously.
- Silence of the Lambs, just because I’d never seen it before. I enjoyed it–very suspenseful. I didn’t have trouble sleeping afterwards, though I did have a terrifying dream involving women killed by an infestation of insects in our building, but that was partly because of being woken up by a fire alarm at 2 a.m.
- How to Marry a Millionaire. Really irreverent and silly. When I say I need something light to read, that could also apply to movies, too. Just a great rom-com. This one doesn’t exactly fit the bill, unfortunately, but it was still fun. Marilyn Monroe is a fun actress.
What I Wrote
- I’ve been a little lax with my personal writing this week, but today I did manage to pump out about 1,000 incredibly terrible words. This is the part in my draft where things start going off the rails and I lose my focus. So that’s…fun.
- For Uproxx, I wrote a long piece full of hilarious Duolingoisms. The next day I got an e-mail from a PR person for another language-learning person asking me if I want to give their product a try. Um, not really. Sorry. I’m a Duo-hard. Or something like that. (Duolingotee?)
What I Accomplished
- Killing the Bullet Journaling. Yessss.
- I got twelve vials of blood drawn on Tuesday! That’s not really an accomplishment, but it’s something worth noting, right?
- Um, I also dusted the house?
Next week I’ve got some family visiting, so that will be nice. Monday and Wednesday’s entries should be as per usual, but we’ll see if I can remember to pre-schedule a Friday roundup. What use is it if I round up Saturday through Tuesday, anyway? Mehhhh.
I’ve really been slacking on my Thirty Before Thirties lately, and should probably get back to that. Bitters, that could be fun. And there’s a pho place that just opened in our building. And I’ve found a new outlet for all my failed food projects, so I could start in on the macaron-making.
We’ll see. Life is crazy. But it keeps moving.
Hi mom! Long time, no blog, huh? It’s okay. I’ve been on hiatus, and I can let myself say that, because this is my blog and I do what I want. I say that a lot. I think because I secretly-not-so-secretly know it’s not okay.
But really, it is! And now I’m back, and I’ve got a brand spankin’ new organizational system I can rave about, and EmilyIRL shall resume as normal.
What I Read
- Not going to catch you up on the past month, but I will say that I. AM. DONE. WITH. MOBY. DICK. I conquered the whale and have emerged alive! Would I recommend it? Ehhh. But I’m glad I got through it. The ending really is tragic and leaves a lump in the throat.
- I really and truly enjoyed Walk on Earth a Stranger. I like to call it Oregon Trail fanfic. Yeah, someone dies of cholera, but in the book you know about the person, and how tragic it is! There’s death in childbirth, there’s leg amputation. There’s magical gold-seeking and tame 1800’s peck-on-the-cheek romance! I can’t rave enough. Not a Dropcap, but if I had to pair a drink with the book, it would be cowboy coffee. AKA coffee with the grounds still at the bottom.
- I also read Uglies last week, which I didn’t love as much. But it was a dystopia before Hunger Games came around, so, interesting at least. Lotta hoverboarding.
- Just binged my way through Exit, Pursued By a Bear today. I had a few minor quibbles early on–a lot of hissing and replying and mumbling when “said” would do, and I thought Hermione’s boyfriend needed at least some redeeming qualities, but all in all, wow. I couldn’t put it down. Talk about a powerful story. I know it’s dumb to say that, but really. I was so satisfied with the ending.
What I Ate
- Mmmmmm oh! I got this bean dip seasoning packet, maybe from Bush’s? Just blend it in with black beans and voila! A delicious black bean dip. I’ve been noshing on that when I get hungry, which is ALL THE TIME.
- I also made jar Cobb salads, which have been fantastic to have on hand. Use this tutorial from TheKitchn if you’re curious. I think next week I might check out this steak salad. Nom nom nom. Salads all day err’ day. (And, oh boy! It’s going to be perfect, because I have leftover bleu cheese, leftover cherry tomatoes, and new potatoes I haven’t used up yet!)
- Two words: chocolate lasagne. Thank you to my priest’s wife for sending me an extra couple portions home after the Memorial Day bash they held.
- Also, it’s popsicle season. Can’t get enough.
- AND! AND! Ben & Jerry’s non-dairy ice cream!!! Sooooo good. I’ve been stealing bites on the reg from my pint of Peanut Butter and Cookies.
What I Watched
- Finished season 3 of Mad Men yesterday, which led directly into today’s Season 4, Episode 1 viewing. Fun times. Things are sad now that Don and Betty have split. I mean, not that they weren’t sad before, but you know.
- Thoroughly didn’t enjoy Sixteen Candles. Sorry to those of you who remember it fondly, but it’s just chock full of awful racism, sexism, and rapey-ness. Really not good. I wasn’t even convinced by the love story. “Oh, this girl I know absolutely nothing about says she would sleep with me. Let me spend the rest of the movie pursuing her from a distance. Our relationship will be perfect when we do manage to meet at the end.” Ew.
What I Wrote
- Le sigh. I’ve essentially abandoned #continuouspractice. But! But! I did manage to pound to the (almost! so close!) and of my 20,000-revised-words, end-of-May goal. Having fun with the story, and that’s all I can ask for.
- I had to push through to the end of the month with my Uproxx writing on Monday and Tuesday, but for the life of me I can not remember what I wrote about. Oh! Nitro coffee at Starbucks! (Not til later this summer, sorry.) And I put together a piece summarizing the workings of a 19th-century candy machine and got just the nicest comment on it. Really made me feel good about what I do. (I’ve recently been seeing my comments in the dashboard panel of the site I go to for article assignments. It’s fun to be able to see, all in one quick go, what people are writing. Easier for me to interact that way, too.)
What I Accomplished
- I did the Murph on Monday. Woo. (And by “the Murph” I mean a half a Murph, without the 20-pound weight vest, and with all the modifications for weakling me.)
- I discovered and then promptly created a Bullet Journal. More about that fantastic awesomeness on Monday. Yes! Monday! I’ll even schedule the post so I feel obligated to write it, and then let it publish blank! Go me.
Next week promises to be bi-zee (you’re supposed to read that with emphasis). As if this week hasn’t already been busy, with blood draws and two-hour music research studies and failed dentist appointments and failed hair appointments and hopefully successful hair appointments and dinners and more dinners. Phew. I’m tired just thinking about it.
But I’ll get through. Better to be busy than not, I suppose. It keeps me occupied, for sure.
Christ is risen!
Now you say, “Indeed he is risen!”
And then we proceed to fumble our way through the same exchange in ten more languages. Guys, Pascha! PASCHA! Literally my favorite day of the year! And it’s done now. I have to wait a whole nother year and struggle through a whole nother Great Lent to experience the ensuing joy (and the next-day party at the priest’s house where we’re all meat-eating half-zombies, woo!).
But at the same time, I’m glad it’s done. Holy Week really is a beast (albeit a lovely one) to get through. I’ve been enjoying relaxing this week. And eating meat and cheese. Ha….
Guess what, guys? Right now, I’m sitting outside in a hammock, typing on my brand new, Kickstarter-backed distraction-free digital typewriter. Don’t believe me? Here, let me take a picture. It will be all the more meta that way.
Hi all. Apologies for my posting delinquency this week. No good reason for it, other than the excuse of not being able to come up with anything to actually write about.
Anyway, it’s been an interesting week. My writing in general has suffered, because I’m having trouble concentrating on anything, for just…reasons. But it’ll resolve itself, surely. In the meantime, here’s my roundup:…
Just like superstitious hotels, this blog doesn’t acknowledge the number thirteen. (Not for superstitious reasons though–I was gone last Friday, and didn’t feel like rounding up Friday on Monday. And MY BLOG MY RULES.)
This week really flew by. It’s always difficult to get myself back into the swing of things post-travel, but all things considered, it’s been fairly productive. Other than the fact that I can’t seem to keep my eyes open. And my heart rate training progress seems to have reverted. :/
What I Read
- Let’s see. Once Upon an Alphabet was delightful. If I ever have kids*, this one is going on the bookshelf for sure. An Octopus + Owl sleuthing team? Yes, please.
- Read My Friend Dahmer, a graphic novel written about the author’s experience growing up with serial killer Jeffrey Dahmer. It’s a tough read to stomach, but also very well done. So take that as you will.
- Finished We Have Always Lived In the Castle! It wasn’t nearly as supernatural as I thought it would be. Just…eerie. And sad.
- I gulped down Out Of My Mind last night. I had serious problems with the writing (continual tense changes, flat villain characters, didactic, outdated references, way too much telling before getting into the story), but I kept reading. So I guess that’s something? One of my classmates did her graduate lecture on writing characters with disabilities and apparently had some trouble with this one. I’m going to listen to it today–I’m so interested to hear her perspective on the book. It just seems like it was rushed to publication because of the important subject matter.
- One chapter of Hot Pterodactyl Boyfriend down. Sooooo excited to leap into Pyke’s winged arms, but I have so much work to do today that I’m not letting myself just yet.
- Current Moby Dick status: I’m a few chapters behind because of the weekend and this morning’s liturgy, but…poor Pip.
What I Ate
- Nothing fancy. I fried up some nutritional yeast-coated tofu and made a nice sandwich out of it yesterday. Probably have that for dinner tonight or something.
What I Watched
- Garden State, for the first time since college. You know what I hate? This: Knowing what I do about the MPDG archetype, the movie is a bit difficult to watch. Yes, it’s got several delightful moments. But it just wasn’t as great as I remembered.
- Another episode of Mad Men Season 2 down. Poor Peggy Olson. And also, what’s with Trudy’s giant skirts? Seriously, lady. You’re a walking cupcake.
What I Wrote
- Still rockin’ the #continuouspractice, although I don’t post pictures on social media of my progress as much. But as long as I’m plugging away, I’m satisfied. That said, I need to work a bit harder. The words just aren’t coming out this month. Maybe it’s because I need a solid marathon day with the story, or maybe it’s because I’m stuck in some boring scenes. I’ll figure it out though.
- As of this writing, I’m down ten Uproxx pieces for the month and am hoping to get three more out today. I’m intentionally working a bit harder these first three weeks of the month so that I can go into Holy Week (!!) with just one long piece to write. But it’s 12:49, and my eyes are already drooping (I really think I have a health issue going on or something–I can not seem to stay awake)(and no, it’s not pregnancy if you’re wondering) so I’m going to have to get things in gear here. Just as soon as I finish this. And work out, too.
What I Accomplished
- “I’ll be running marathons before you know it.” That was the last thing I wrote on the Week 12 roundup. Well, guess what? I just found out that The Oatmeal’s Beat the Blerch 10k/Half/Full Marathon is coming to Las Vegas in October. Noooo, I’m not going to be* signing myself up for the full, but the half? Definitely. Why? Because cake, couches, and freaking Matthew Inman himself. Forget the color run–this is going to be the greatest marathon event in the history of marathon events.
*Some days I feel more hopeful than others.
*Future tense here is because registration hasn’t opened just yet. But you know I’m checking for it every day.
Hi, all. It’s Friday, and I’m loving life. I got paid yesterday, I’ve had four solid days of the Charmed Writer’s Life, I’ve been exercising, the weather is gorgeous, and the weekend is set to be incredible. The end.
What I Read
- In addition to finishing Brown Girl Dreaming, I started and then abandoned Pippi Longstocking. I can.not.stand that girl. Maybe I’m old and grumpy, I don’t know. But I’ve always hated Amelia Badelia, so I’m guessing it’s more my low tolerance for stupid shenanigans and deliberate ignorance.
- I RESTARTED THE NEVERENDING STORY! I RESTARTED THE NEVERENDING STORY! Backstory here: I loved this book as a kid. But it took me about three tries until I gained enough momentum to finish it. Then I tried re-reading it a few years later and couldn’t get past the first few chapters again. Now, post-MFA, I’m soooo excited to revisit it. It’s actually only 350ish pages, so, entirely do-able. Once I get past that slow, sad beginning.
- Current Moby Dick status: ugh OMG we’re still stuck on killing whales. Now time we’re talking about the decapitated head, and how Ahab is talking to it. Wut? Luckily they’ve just spotted another ship in the distance, so there’s about to be a gam go down in the middle of the och.
What I Ate
- Meat. Lots of it. On Sunday. And now, no more meat or eggs until May 1. #doxprobs
- Doing well on living out of the pantry. I think it’s going to involve me cooking a lot of carbs. Crumpets last week, ricotta pancakes this week. I also discovered the sweetness that is aquafaba. Which I promptly used in today’s rendition of the ricotta pancakes. Cheesefare, anyone?
- I also made two out of Smitten Kitchen’s last three recipes, the Roasted Yams and Chickpeas with Yogurt, and the Nolita-style Avocado Toast. Because I am a Smitten Kitchen fangirl groupie. And they were fantastic.
- Roasted brussels sprouts with sriracha mayonnaise. Le siiiiiigh. No recipe, because that crap’s easy to come up with on your own. I ate them in a day, and now no more brussels sprouts until at least April. I could cry.
- Oh! And those macarons from the picture above! (Which, whoops, I realized as I carried them to my spot in Publicus, contain eggs.) Why buy one for $1.25 when you can get three for $3.25? Jam filling was a bit too sweet for my taste.
What I Watched
- I have been indoctrinated into the cult that is Mad Men. One episode a day means that I’ll be watching Season 1 Episode 7 tonight.
- Pride and Prejudice–the 2005 Kiera Knightley/Matthew MacFayden version. I don’t want to hear it. I don’t want to hear it. It’s the superior version, and just don’t argue with me on that, okay? And of course I wept all the tears because how could you not? And now Darcy eying Elizabeth at the pianoforte is my current desktop background. All the longing!
What I Wrote
- Uproxx. Doing well with the quota stuff. If I manage to pump out a couple shorties tomorrow. I even did a phone interview that was awkward and awful and enlightening and didn’t go so poorly in the end.
- You can read this past Monday’s post for my little gush on #continuouspractice. Daily writing time means that I’ve reached almost 20,000 words in this month’s draft. CAVEAT, though: most of those were copied and pasted from NaNoWriMo. Heh. That only means that the remainder of this month will be revising those words, which is my favorite thing to do anyhow. Huzzah! Fist pump!
- Didn’t tap Exclusive Query Agent. Only because he tweeted on Wednesday that he’d finally caught up on all queries sent to him before 2/1, and I sent mine 2/2, and I was sure that I would get my rejection on Thursday because of it. Do…do you hear that? That’s the sound of crickets, I think.
What I Accomplished
- I’ve picked up the piano again! Ha. I just wanted to say it like that. After I finished Pride and Prejudice I had, had to learn the theme on piano. So I printed off the sheet music and I’ve got two lines sort of down. I am dismal, I tell you. Dismal. Mother! I apologize for all those years of never practicing when I had the chance!
Anyway. Next week will be great. As much as I gripe about fasting from meat and all the other yummy things, I’m really looking forward to the beginning of Great Lent, starting with Forgiveness Vespers this Sunday and moving into the marathon week that is the first week of Lent. There’s just something comforting in stepping back and disciplining myself for a time. It makes Pascha at 2 a.m. all that much more wonderful.
So. Until next Friday! Keep your fingers crossed for any news re: the manuscript.