Friday, February 25, 2011


I've felt so uninspired lately.
I mean, look at this blog and it's crap postings - that's just a slice of uninspired for you. Blah.
My friend's birthday party is next weekend. I love buying gifts, LOVE IT, but I can't think of a single thing to give about uninspired blah boring-ness.

Maybe it's the lingering winter.

Maybe it's my inability to finish things.

Maybe it's my job - it leaves me worn out and frazzled at the end of the day and I am slowly, slowly growing to hate and resent it...not the work itself, but the drama drama drama all the time.

I guess the good news is that I don't feel sad or depressed or anything. I am quite content with married life and our cozy nook of an apartment. I love it. I love spending time with husbando - actually, he's away on business and the apartment feels empty and echo-y without him. I am relieved that he'll be home tonight (as fun as it was to have the space to sprawl - in bed, on the couch - I do miss his presence). So that's good I guess.

Maybe all the traveling we've done in the past year (DC, NYC, Jamaica, San Diego) has made me restless. I feel like I constantly want to be away. I think that's wrapped up in the weather too, because I'm guessing if I had my deck garden (which I am planning to transform!) and was able to read/nap in a patch of warm sunlight, I wouldn't feel the urge to flee all the time.

A friend wrote me a letter from Hawai'i, telling me how she'd love to have me visit and identify the birds in her yard. Oh how I longed to pack a bag and bounce.

Jam said the other day "you love Africa, you love it so much!" I said "If I could, I'd leave tomorrow to go back there...with you of course, dear."

Yup. Guess I'm restless. Guess I'm sick of winter. Guess I hate my job at the moment. Maybe I should start buying lottery tickets? If I hit it big I could quit my job and travel instead, LOL. Right now, that sounds good, and that's just about the only sliver of inspiration I've had in what seems like weeks or months. Le sigh.

Anyways, with March around the corner, I'm going to try and be a little more, um, I don't know, fresh and inspired. I feel quite stale. Ew. Now that just sounds gross.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Expectant Coworker Adjusts Expectations

ha ha I'm witty...

So the woman across the hall is pregnant, which is very exciting. She's super-nice and brings us all candy on a regular basis. Basically everyone on the floor likes her a lot, so we're all excited to get pregnancy updates, plan a secret-surprise shower, and bring in little gifties here and there.

What I feel bad about is the people clearly trying to unload their crap on her - they know she is too nice to say "no."

I mean, I am ALL FOR hand-me-downs. Heck, hand-me-downs are practically like shopping, sans money. A big bag of stuff I've never  seen before? heck YES! Hell, I wore clothes from the free box in college, and right now I am wearing a top that used to belong a cousin. Basically, I am trying to tell you that I'm not being snobby about people's stuff.

What would make me annoyed if I were in pregnant coworker's situation are the conversations that are going like this "so....I have X that used to belong to little precious. He's 10 months now, so he doesn't need it. It's kind of ripped and stained, but you sew, right? And it's not like you get to go out much in those first months, so a stain on the front isn't a big deal. It's just food. or maybe spit up breast milk or something. You'll get used to it." Um. ew. Just now I overheard this from across the hall "so it's broken in some places (I think this referred to a mobile) but you can just tie any old toy to it and hang it from the ceiling, it's basically good as new."

OK people. It's great that you want to give stuff to pregnant coworker, but if it belongs in the trash, maybe you should put it there...because I'm guessing if you don't, she's going to do it for you, so how about we all save ourselves some time and effort....

I don't envy coworker for this reason, though I must say, there are many enviable things about her pregnancy, one being that her coworkers have stopped asking her when she's going to have a baby. Yeah. I envy that. A lot.

Friday, February 18, 2011

Soda Ban

So I just read this blog post about banning soda because it's water and high fructose corn syrup and it's not "natural."

Which is kinda true....


It brings me back to a conversation I've had with Jam time and time again - I believe that the "higher powers" in this world - so in this case, let's say the FDA - can only hold your hand so much before they have to step back and say "OK, if you'd like to make this bad choice for yourself, go ahead, we've told you the ill effects of consuming this product, there's nothing more we can do because IT'S A FREE COUNTRY."

Why should I, who loves a soda now and then, have to suffer because there are people in this world who are dumb enough to drink it like water and give it to small children?? I drink a soda a day or so (well actually, probably not a whole one because I'm a soda snob - I hate how quickly it gets flat in a can, so I usually don't finish a whole one) and enjoy it. I know that it may not be great for me, I know that it might be hindering my ability to quickly reduce the fleshy bits hanging on to my midsection. I get it, but I'm going to do it anyway, and I'm going to like it.

I guess my point is this - I don't want to waste my time and tax dollars holding someone else's hand because they can't make a good decision for themselves. If the caramel coloring in soda REALLY is a carcinogen (always, always, read scientific studies and question their validity people *cough cough autism vaccine study cough cough*) then yeah, maybe that issue should be addressed (though really, how many other carcinogens am I exposed to daily just by living life?). Otherwise, do what Lady Gaga says: don't look outward for validity, look inward. Look inward and think about your choices - if they're bad ones, so be it - don't make the rest of us pay.

Rant over.

*cracks open a coke 0*

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Very Glad I Watched the Grammy's

Not just because Lady Gaga is awesome....

but also because these guys are AMAZEBALLS:

I *might* have a couple of Mumford and Sons songs on repeat on the iPod right now......and I *might* play them out loud and rock out in my empty office tomorrow....

Cause I need freedom now
And I need to know how
To live my life as it's meant to be

And I will hold on hope
And I won't let you choke
On the noose around your neck

And I'll find strength in pain
And I will change my ways
I'll know my name as it's called again
Awesomeness, x 10^11
Yeah. I just typed an exponent. Cause I'm a dork like that.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011


My hemoglobin was epically high today - 14.0gm/dL
I don't think it has EVER been that high.
I started to wonder what could've made it spike - we did have a steak on Valentine's Day, but I had a modest portion. I did have some spinach along with it, which could've helped.

Then I thought about all the dough I ate while making cookies.
Dough=flour=enriched white flour=supplemental iron.

I wouldn't be upset if I had to eat a lot of cookie dough the weekend before my donations, ha ha ha.

Wednesday, February 09, 2011

Extra Work

Valentine's Day had the courtesy to fall on a Monday this year.
That means spare $$ for me as I log a few hours at the local flower shop. No idea what they'll have me do! At Christmas, it was arranging greens in oasis foam. Obviously I'll be spared the needle-poked, sap-covered hands of the holiday season, but I'm guessing I'll be doing something similar for V-day, only with ferns and other floral greens. I am OK with this.

The florist asked me over Christmas if I enjoyed the job. I immediately said "Yes!" She smiled and was happy with the response. I didn't elaborate on why: because I don't have to think.....

I didn't want that to sound offensive because the two sisters who run the shop obviously have to think all day. One is the florist, who has more floral-arranging talent and flair in her pinky nail than I do in my whole body, and one runs the office. The florist gets up at 4:30 every day to get to the flower market in Boston. She always knows exactly what to buy, how much, what colors, etc. The office manager is accused of being ditzy sometimes - she can be, BUT how she always knows what needs to go where and when baffles me. I'm sure I could figure out the system eventually, but still, I love my job, my simple tasks, that require no hard thinking.

I actually have loved most of the more labor-oriented jobs I've had. Landscaping during the summers was my escape, even in the sweltering heat and humidity of a New England August. I adored being left alone weeding in someone's back yard. No one bugged me, spoke to me, emailed me, called me - it was glorious about 90% of the time (because I did work for a handful of jerks, like a woman who would calculate my pay to the minute. Maybe she did this because she was redoing her pool house so it would have a kitchen and laundry room. Another woman made me wheelbarrow dirt uphill for about 6 hours and take care of her dogs when she wasn't around. ugh). I loved counting plovers on a lonely stretch of closed beach. I loved sweeping up after birds at the parrot shelter - and I didn't even get paid for that. They were jobs that gave my mind a rest - I could lose myself in them, get lost in the monotony of planting bushes or looking for bird's nests. I was alone with my thoughts...and there was no drama.

I think I'm looking forward to working not only for the extra cash, which always seems particularly needed after the Christmas bills roll in, but because I need the break. My own job has been seriously dramatic lately, both within the hospital (though that is slowly, slowly dying down) and within the nationwide project. Don't get me wrong, I love working with so many women. It's great to have them as colleagues and mentors...but there is a subset in this project that seem to absolutely feast on drama. It starts with a simple project request, and turns into a flurry of emails and accusations. "She didn't invite me to be on a call" "I wasn't panicking!" "I have a lot of work to do!" I am, invariably, at the center every time. It's a tiresome place to be. At times I think "This is not what I signed up for" and long to look for a new job. It probably won't happen, though, not only because I'm settled here, but because I have a decent salary, fantastic benefits, and I am (hopefully) about to be published as a co-author on a somewhat significant (to the field) paper. I won't lie though, I sometimes see job offerings from the Environmental Science and Policy department at my alma mater and am tempted by things such as "whale monitor, spend a summer off Provincetown counting whales!" or "migratory bird counter needed" or "water quality assurance position for Charles River Watershed." The jobs are usually temporary, and the pay is mostly lousy. It's just not meant to be, I guess. For now, I'll put my headphones on, crank some hip-hop and "Glee" tunes, and try to get through the day without snapping (via email, of course!).

Thank goodness for Valentine's Day!

Friday, February 04, 2011

What I Will Do to Combat Boredom This Weekend

1. Clean and do laundry
2. Make plans for fun things
3. Work on quilt top for Amy's friend
4. Finish fingerless mitts for grandma
5. Price out new laptop
6. Organize photos on flickr
7. Make calendar for office
8. Make list of organizational things desired from the Container Store
9. Exercise
10. Ummmm...GO to the library!

There. There are 10 things I can do to beat boredom this weekend.

People can't seem to believe that I'm bored. Maybe it's because I'm always busy.
Maybe because I always have something I'm doing.
For some reason, I feel energy-sapped and dull, I just want to lie around, sleep and watch TV...but I'm even bored with doing that (ha ha ha, at least I can laugh at myself for this). Man, this hibernation is getting in my head. Resist! Resist! Entertain thyself, Allison!

Thursday, February 03, 2011

Winter Blahs

Anyone else have them?

I feel trapped by the weather, UGH....not that I don't go out, I do. I go to work, the grocery store...I go outside and shovel...still.

I feel the need to find a warm light-filled space. One highlight of this dreary CRAPASS weather has been the healing garden at the hospital. It's bright and bird sounds or flowing water sounds are piped in. It's small though (I mean, it's amazing and huge in the sense that it's an indoor space at a hospital, but small in the sense that I need room to frolic. Plus frolicking may be inappropriate, ha ha). I think I need a beach. Or something. UGH.

I guess one option is to plan for the warmer weather. I flipped through my book on container gardening, and I'm totally stalking a local farm that offers a CSA pickup in Boston. Jam is not convinced, but I'm sold, as they also include jam, eggs, and cheese a few weeks out of the season. I think it'd reduce our grocery bill and the price is only $18/week for a half share (but you pay up front, so it IS daunting. still).

I keep imagining everything I see snow-covered leafy or blooming.

Winter in New England is always long, I get that. That's what makes the spring so sweet. But with a trapped bored feeling, drama at work, a sick husbando (flu shot for him next year, no doubt) and a general feeling of ick, I am ready for it to be over. My boss told me on Monday that spring was only 48 days away. Somehow this seems like an eternity.