[Resolutions] – Week 38 Unplugged

Starting Wednesday, you may be seeing a lot less of me on these here internets…

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I’m not going to even pretend that I can go an entire week without my phone or the internet. I don’t even think I can go a day. First world problems? Maybe. But I can’t.

So my goal will be something along the lines of:

  • Check Facebook only a few times a day – maybe in the morning, at lunch, afternoon, and before bed?
  • Don’t leave my personal email open at work – only check it every few hours.
  • Keep my cell phone on (for emergencies) but much less texting and candy-crushing (ooo that one hurt…).

So I guess this is the week I will finally catch up on “Orange is the New Black” and all those books I’ve been meaning to read!

[Resolutions] – “E” is for Effort

Kind of disappointed in this week. I’m definitely starting to feel the burnout from having weekly resolutions, but I did so well last week with stepping out of my comfort zone (3 things in 3 days!) that I just didn’t have it in me to get all overachiever on this one.

I did do a lot of “different” things this week, but they weren’t all intentional. I left my car at work by accident and didn’t remember until I went to drive to work the next morning and thought it was stolen. Then I spent the weekend being sick. Neither was part of my resolution to Do Something Different, but both were somewhat surprising and non-routine.

If I had drawn this one earlier in the year, I would have had a list of about 17 things I wanted to do in 7 days to accomplish it. I would have bought a new outfit, tried a new restaurant, maybe cut or dyed my hair, and started dating girls. Well, maybe. They’re kind of crazy, I know this from experience. But I would have done SOMEthing. Several somethings.

Instead what I did do is go to Panera for breakfast. Yup, Panera. A place I’ve been a million times. Even for breakfast. But I haven’t been in a long time and I was getting sick of Starbucks (gasp!), so I got up early and changed the morning routine a bit to allow time to get to Panera for breakfast.

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Unfortunately, this was the day that I failed to remember my car was already at work since I didn’t pick it up the night before on my way home from carpooling to Dan’s aunt’s house. No Panera for me that day, but I managed to get up early 2 days in a row and try again the next day.

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That chai is like Christmas in a cup. It’s delicious!

I won’t sell myself TOO short because I was conscious all week of getting out of my routine and shaking things up a little. But for me that just means going out on a Friday night at 9 instead of already being curled up in bed with a stack of magazines. 9 o’clock. AT NIGHT.

So, there’s that. There’s just not much else…

The good news is that we’re about 20 hours into Stress Less week and I’m rocking it so far. I mean I haven’t even thrown anything.

[Resolutions] – Stress-Free Week 37

This week all I have to do is Stress Less!

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If I can manage this, it will be really helpful to find some tips & tricks that work. I tend to stress most at home over cleaning and lengthy to-do lists. It’s also getting close to my busiest time at work AND the holiday season, so I’d say this week came at a perfect time – early enough to help me prepare for those stressful times, but not so late that I’m right in the middle of them and don’t have time to stress less!

I think it’s also a great excuse to stock up on wine and chocolate. Should be easy, right? I mean…I’m not gonna stress over it! I hope?

[Resolutions] – Comfortably Uncomfortable

Stepping out of my comfort zone actually went really well. At least, I think it did. People may have laughed at me or pointed at me, but since I didn’t hear it or see it, I’m saying it went well.

I started the week on Wednesday by taking the day off and going to the beach with my family. This had already been planned a few days in advance, but I kept telling everyone I didn’t have a bathing suit and would just wear shorts and a tank. That’s actually a giant lie because I have 4 bathing suits: 2 one-piece things that I think were meant for women far older than myself (one even has a skirt!), and 2 bikinis that I wouldn’t dare to put on anymore, but can’t bear to throw away since, hello, those things are expensive! And of course I’m going to fit into it again some day after I have kids, eat my way through every Italian restaurant and bakery, and get to the gym more frequently than annually. A girl can dream. BIG.

In the spirit of this week, however, I decided to go to the beach in my one-piece. With the skirt. And the giant white flowers. Obviously there are no pictures of this, but if you’re looking for embarrassing photos, you won’t be too disappointed if you read on. I honestly didn’t feel that uncomfortable at the beach, especially since I was only with family, but I didn’t want any visual evidence that this had made it out of my drawer.

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It’s not an ugly suit really, it just makes me mourn my bikini days a little bit and wish that I had appreciated them while they existed.

The next day I decided to go to dinner alone. Party of One.

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Can you believe all those rolls?! For ONE person! Actually, everything I got was rather large and delicious. This was an appetizer:

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About 80% of that came home with me, including all those extra rolls. I had a small salad, too. It cancelled everything else out.

When I first sat down, I did feel a little weird and self-conscious. Actually, I felt that way right when I walked in and the hostess said “how many?” and I responded “just me!”

Once I sat down though, I actually really enjoyed it and found it a nice way to relax after a long work day. It helped that there weren’t very many other people in the restaurant, and by the time I left, there was a woman across from me sitting alone reading a book. I hadn’t thought about bringing a book, so I mostly entertained myself by staring at the TV or my phone. Definitely something I would do again and not nearly as uncomfortable as it sounds!

For my final day (finished my week in 3 days with time to spare, wooo!!), I decided to go a little nuts with my makeup. Not Drew Carey’s Mimi style, but just a little bit of red lipstick. I never really wore much lipstick until recently, but since I’ve become obsessed with beauty videos on YouTube, I’ve been experimenting a little more. I shy away from bright colors usually, with the exception of a summery pink, because I don’t really like my smile and would rather not draw attention to it. Also, they just kind of…scare me?

Speaking of scary, here’s that picture I promised. Talk about stepping out of your comfort zone…eeek. When I was first getting ready, I thought I looked a little clownish.

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But once I got ready, it didn’t look quite so shocking. It kind of faded to a deep pink.

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I’m not very good at selfies. Because I’m not 17.

So there’s my week! Turns out all 3 things were really not that uncomfortable at all. I think that’s almost always the case when you try something new – it’s scary and a little off-putting at first, but once you’re knee-deep (or lip-deep!) into it, it feels pretty ok. Even a little bit fun 🙂

[Resolutions] – Something Different

It’s time to shake things up a little bit. Do something different.

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Except. Er. I don’t really know how. As the above photo probably shows.

I guess I could go a week without froyo. Or dye my hair? Maybe be on time for work? I can’t really figure out if there are an overwhelming amount of endless possibilities, or limited realistic ones.

Hmm, confusion and indecisiveness. That’s different.

Riiiiiiiight.

[Resolutions] – Dabbling in the Arts

It seems like this was an artsy week for everyone! I’ve seen posts on Facebook from friends who have gone to see Wicked, designed their own shirts, or spent a gorgeous summer day at a music festival. For my own artistic resolution, I decided to paint my toe nails!

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Nice, right? What an easy week!

Haha, I’m only joking. While I did paint my nails this week, I’m pretty certain it took zero artistic talent and that I can’t fool you guys into giving me a week off from resolutions. So, here’s what we REALLY did:

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I love how these came out, and I like mine a lot better than my last wine-fueled painting! It’s really neat to me to see how differently everyone’s final piece looks, even though we all based them off of the same model painting. Some people stick to realistic-looking elephants and trees, while adding in a sun to make it their own (me), and others go more the way of frolicking elephants and white leaves (Dan). It’s funny to me because that’s how we are in real life also – I’m the practical one who likes to do everything how it’s “supposed” to be done, and Dan is more laid-back and doesn’t worry about things like why his elephants’ feet aren’t touching the ground.

If you’ve never done one of these “paint & sip” events, I would highly, HIGHLY recommend it. It’s a lot of fun, and even if you’ve never painted before in your life, you will be surprised at how well it turns out. The instructors guide you step-by-step, but you’re also free to take your own liberties with the piece, so they all really do turn out differently, but they all look great!

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After a little debate about what really constitutes “art”, we decided to visit the Griffin Museum of Photography. I had been practicing a little more with my camera over the weekend (finally!!), and I was eager to see some real examples.

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We were both a little disappointed in the museum, not because it didn’t offer some very cool photographs, but because it was very very small. We paid $7 to get in and were done perusing the 2 rooms in under 10 minutes. Maybe even 8 minutes including the time we spent taking pictures of ourselves with the photos:

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However, the bathroom alone is worth at least $5.

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And there are some really great photos there right now. Can you believe this was done by a high school student?!

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I wonder if he looks like that in spring, too?

Oh, and as a little disclaimer, obviously some of these photos include other photos that are not my own. I really wouldn’t enjoy being sued for copyright issues, so I figured I should mention that.

But I do really like Twinkies.

[Resolutions] – Stepping Into Week 35

This week is a little nerve-wracking, a bit intriguing, and somewhat fun.

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I’m not really sure what would be outside of my comfort zone. Actually, I’m pretty sure my comfort zone is on my couch, or with my friends/family, or outside reading a good book. So anything outside of that, like going to work, would count, right? Wait, no. That would mean I have to go to work this week to be outside my comfort zone, and I already planned on not doing that for at least one day.

Being the center of attention makes me uncomfortable. So do birds, dancing, and fire. Based on that, I think I should join a Vegas stage show and this week will be complete.

I actually do have a few ideas for this one, but I could always use more, so feel free to leave a comment letting me know what you think I should do, or what you would do!

[Resolutions] – Patience – At Least It’s a Good Song

I apologize in advance, but this is not going to be a very entertaining post because, you guys, being patient is boring. Maybe that’s why I don’t do it very often.

I was actually quite proud of myself this week. I even drove on the Mass Pike. In traffic. Both ways. Basically all summer long it looks like this:

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And I did that on purpose. Dan had me use Waze to find a different route so that we could avoid the stop-and-go traffic all the way home, but I chose the Mass Pike in order to truly test my patience. It wasn’t so bad, but maybe that was because I had a riding buddy and a plethora of radio stations to keep me entertained. Normally, I would come home full of road rage and four-letter words, but instead I found myself telling Dan to be patient. It might have been Opposite Day.

The one thing that I am horribly impatient with however is my DSLR. I know, you’re sick of me talking about this thing. I keep meaning to learn how to use my camera, and I keep not doing it. I signed up for a class…it got cancelled. I bought a book…I never find time to read it. I take the camera out to play with it….I get frustrated and come home without taking any pictures. I’m just so overwhelmed by all the settings, and when you add to that the fact that I’m a crazy perfectionist and want all my shots to be amazing on the FIRST try, let’s just say the end result is far from anything that could be mistaken for patience.

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So that is this weekend’s project. Read the book, learn the camera, practice, and be patient with the process slash results.

And stay away from the Mass Pike.

[Resolutions] – Week 34 in Fine Arts. Or Even Just Ok Arts.

I didn’t realize how perfect this week’s choice was until I just started writing this.

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Which is super easy because Thursday night Dan and I will be here painting another drunken masterpiece. We went once before and painted the Zakim Bridge at night. I think they came out quite well and I’m sure the wine had everything to do with that.

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This time we have our own bottle of wine, as opposed to the small glass we each had last time, so I’m sure these next two paintings will be museum-worthy.

Speaking of museums, I would like to do something else artsy since the art bar feels a bit like cheating, as it was already planned before I drew my resolution this week. I’m not a big fan of history, or actual art, so I suppose a museum wouldn’t really work unless it was the science museum, which isn’t art, so nevermind. Clearly I need help with this one. Maybe this? Or this? Maybe a play, or a festival of some sort, or a foreign film, or interesting exhibit? Leave me a comment if you know of anything going on this week!

[Resolutions] – Now Hiring Week 32

What is your dream job? The one thing you would happily do every day, even it if paid very little. Mine would be a Traveling Event Planner Blogger Photographer Food-Tester. I’m not entirely sure that would fit on a business card though.
Even though I don’t really work in any of those fields, I do enjoy (shockingly) the job I have. Sometimes it’s repetitive, sometimes I have bad days, and sometimes I want to storm out and never come back, but for the most part I really enjoy working with numbers, solving problems, and playing with spreadsheets. I’m not really looking for a new job because I’m pretty comfortable where I am.

That being said, it was about time I updated my resume a little bit to reflect my current position and my master’s degree. Instead of updating the hard copy of my resume (since I’m not very serious about job-searching right now), I revamped my LinkedIn profile instead.

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This article was pretty helpful. The only thing I still need is a more recent picture of myself, but the ones I have don’t look very professional.

I plan to keep my LinkedIn profile up to date and every so often I will look around to see what’s out there, or what I might be interested in for the future. Feel free to find me and add me as a contact, or even leave a recommendation or endorsement if you’d like. I promise I will return the favor!

Even before I picked this resolution, I had been wanting to redo both mine and Dan’s resumes. I loved the look of something like this:

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Sadly, I think that’s a little too crazy for any position I would be applying for. But it was perfect for Dan who works in a creative field, so he used some of these templates as inspiration for his own new resume. And while I’m pimping Dan out, check out his portfolio and demo reel. Unlike me, he is currently on the hunt for a new job, so any leads would be very helpful to us both!

And I suppose if you can find me a job as a Dog-Walking Mathematician Ice Cream Specialist, I would take it.