I was almost only one day late! But Monday evening while writing I felt the need to sleep, partly out of tiredness and partly out of procrastination. It’s hard for me to be brief in these things because I have so much to say, but it’s hard to write it all at once. I want to try writing it throughout the week. And maybe being briefer.
- Daily routine – Last week apathy and mental rebellion settled in, so I wasn’t great at sticking to my schedule, despite good intentions at the beginning of the week. Part of the problem is that I get thrown off by disruptions. The way my blocks of time are arranged makes it hard to think about adjusting my schedule on the fly, so I end up throwing it out for the day. So I’ve rearranged the blocks to make the routine easier to think about, combining errands and dinner at the beginning of the evening, putting my project time right after that at 6:30, and clustering the life maintenance blocks at the end of the day (walk, devotions, and night prep). That gives me a target time of 8:30 to start on those. So that’s this week’s scheduling experiment. I think finding a new solution to try will also be somewhat motivating, so we’ll see if that helps me stick to the schedule better. My Saturday schedule still needs some work, especially to account for weeks when I feel the need to sleep in.
- Math relearning – I inched forward in my pre-K reading. I’ve made it past the Module 1 and Topic A overviews and a little way into an actual lesson. At this rate I’ll finish preschool a few years from now. But I’m intentionally spending more time thinking and commenting on this beginning material so I can figure out how I want to process the rest of it. I’m hoping I’ll get into a rhythm that’ll let me move much faster. Plus last week I only spent a few minutes on it.
- Diet – Two more weeks until my blood test and I can find out if a low-carb diet lowers my cholesterol. Now, periodically I go into a meal crisis where I get bored with my usual options and I want to find other foods or places to eat, and I get a little distressed about it. That happens more often when my diet is restricted and I don’t want to spend much time cooking. I’ve gotten a little bored with regular salads from restaurants and stores, and they take too long to put together myself. There isn’t a lot of fast food that fits the diet, and it seems unbalanced to just order sandwiches and take off the bread so I’m basically left with a pile of meat for every meal. I’m also trying not to eat Atkins frozen meals all the time so I get bored with those. What I really want is a dish that combines meat and vegetables, preferably something I can make once and eat for several days. I don’t mind leftovers. Lately I’ve been making taco salads. They’re good, but again, more time to make than I like. I want some kind of casserole. I just need some good combinations and some sauces. So that’s my next low-carb project.
- Guns, Germs, and Steel – I’m a little over halfway through it. It really is an excellent book. If I were a history professor, I’d seriously consider it as a textbook for an intro class. It covers so much ground in such an integrated way while addressing such an important and fundamental topic. I’m thinking of buying the book for future reference. The main question for me these days is whether to get the ebook or the print book. Since I usually buy used if it’s print, buying the ebook would pay the author, and it would take up less (meaning no) space. But I like the idea of having this book on the shelf with my other social science books. The audiobook I checked out from the library just expired, so I have it on hold again. I would’ve pushed my way through the rest of it at the last minute like I normally do, but it’s more work to listen to than my other audiobooks, so I decided to give myself a break.
- Reading schedule – My projects lately have revolved around writing, but I also have a lot of books to read. Typically I do that in tiny bits whenever I have 10 minutes between activities. But that doesn’t get me nearly far enough. So I’m thinking about dedicating whole weeks to reading during my project time. That’s probably a no-brainer to most people, but despite collecting so many books, I tend to think of my projects in terms of producing rather than consuming things, which normally means writing vs reading. My reading weeks will probably still involve writing, because otherwise I forget what I’ve read or what I wanted to say about what I’ve read. If I take time to write, I spend around 5 minutes per page. Let’s be conservative and round that to 10 pages an hour. That’s 20 pages per day if I stick to my schedule (wishful thinking). That’s 100 pages a week, if I take the weekends off. That feels like too many weeks per book, but by the end I’d have a lot of my own writing taken care of, so it’d be time well spent. I’d also like to develop an iterative method of reading that progresses from a brief overview to an in-depth treatment so I can stop after any stage and have something worthwhile to post. I feel like I should’ve had all this figured out years ago, but my scatteredness has prevented me.
- Finances – Taxes finished! Next up: invoicing. I’m waaaay behind. Again. At some point it’d be nice to establish a routine on larger time scales (monthly, quarterly, yearly) to take care of things like invoicing.
- Clothes – I got my pants in the mail. I’ve tried them on. They’re fine. Thank goodness. I can move on. Now that that’s done, here’s my complete set of dress shirts and pants, plus stuff for casual Fridays.
- Death – I went to the memorial service on Friday. I go to these things half to support the family and half to learn more about the person who died. Usually I end up regretting not knowing them better but feeling inspired to be a better person. That was true again. She was a programmer and a caring and feisty but reserved person who loved to cook. I felt a connection. I’m hoping I can meet with her husband over the next few months, mostly to listen. He’s my friend from a men’s retreat a few years back, but we’ve only spoken briefly since then when we’ve run across each other at church.
- Socializing – Last Thursday a livestreamer I watch invited me to apply to join the Minecraft server he’s on. I’ve been wanting to expand my circle of online gaming friends, and this looks like a golden opportunity. I feel honored to be invited, since things like that rarely happen to me. I even have the application written. But whenever I’m confronted with anything that looks like a commitment, I hem and haw and take days to decide, because as I see it the major feature of a commitment is that it rarely stays inside its initial schedule. The time involvement creeps outward like a spilled liquid until it’s taken over a large part of my life. With all the items on my own agenda for my life and the difficulty I have managing even those, I can’t let everyone else pile on their agendas too. So these days I’m very cautious about what I agree to, and I have to maintain constant vigilance against letting the initial agreement expand too much. But with this server, unlike some others I’ve seen, they seem to leave it completely up to you how much you participate. So I just might say yes.