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December 2009
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February 2010

The Moon & The Sun & What Equals Contentment

Did you see the moon last night?  It was amazing!!  An amazing end to an amazing day that started out with the sun.


In my new space, when the sky is clear of clouds and I get the chance to sleep late, the sun wakes me up. Which is one of the best ways to start your day from a Kathyland perspective. Not a fan of alarms, noise, commotion. Give me the sun any day.

Yesterday was a day of friends and appointments and things-to-do that needed doing. Friday being my first day off for the week, I sorta kinda eased into it by waking up by sunlight at a fairly early hour, but not actually getting up until much later. A modified version of sleeping in until noon, as I used to do. With more productivity thrown in. (Gotta love laptops!)

Met my buddy & newly 'adopted' sister Cali for lunch which was the perfect "first item on my agenda'. If you don't know or follow Cali, you really should. She is a delight and a lovebug and all sorts of amazing & funny. And she LOVES Orange. Which I used to hate until I fell in love with Orange also. (It's a Fruit thing). We had lots to catch up on and we sat for close to 30 minutes before ordering. Seriously, I could sit and talk with Cali all day :-)  (Hi Cali!!)

Headed over to Boulder Sports Medicine for one of my follow-up appointments from my ER visit.

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While it would be very 'outdoorsy & Coloradoish' to say I was there for a sports related injury, nope, not the case. That's just where my Pulmonologist happened to be. We did some tests that involved walking and running up stairs (no problem) and walking downstairs (EEK- fear of heights!!) with a Pulse Oximeter attached to my finger and guess what?? Fear of heights and prolonged standing at the very top of a staircase can make a person hyperventilate. And really dizzy! No shit! My Doctor got a chuckle out of the episode...me, not so much.

Good news overall. O2 levels have levelled out and were ok. One more test is scheduled 'just to make sure' but for the most part, no lung damage as originally thought. YAY!

Big yay, actually. I'd been concerned about the 'potential lung damage' ever since my ER Dr mentioned it last Sunday morning. I've never smoked anything in my life - no cigarettes, weed, pipes, nothing. The only smoke I was subjected to was second-hand smoke which I made a habit of bitching about to my parents from as early as I can recall (before first grade) all the way up to when I moved out to get married. Being exposed to cigarette smoke has always hurt..physically hurt...to be around. And for lots of reasons, I'm glad second-hand smoke is no longer a potential cause for something worse.

With the appointment finished and out of the way I did something I haven't done in awhile. I meandered. Drove around the area near Boulder Community Hospital. Checked out the houses. Little side streets. The sun on the Flatirons. People watched. And overall took in the beauty and energy that is Boulder on a Friday afternoon of a Wolf Moon.

Visited The Cup  (my first visit - had heard so much about The Cup I had to see what was up with that!) and killed time while waiting to meet up with my awesome buddy Benjamin who I have a love of Fruit in common with :-)

Catching-up was overdue and most definitely worth the wait. Benjamin is one of my work friends that no longer works at my location, so it was great to finally sit down together IRL.

Eventually Benjamin had to leave for a prior engagement, but in parting he walked me 3 doors down to meet our buddy Andrew who was passing time at another place I'd heard tons about but hadn't visited - Atlas Purveyors. VERY. COOL. PLACE. I loved the vibe! The colors! Floating shelves - of which I am a sucker for! And chandeliers. And the quiet. Quiet is good and conducive to quiet conversations. 

Spending time with Andrew is always an adventure in the "oh-wow-no-way-how-cool-is-that!!"  I was intrigued to hear of Andrew's experience with his Crossfit/Paleo way of life and am thinking of joining the Crossfit/Paleo way of living. Figure try it for a week and see what happens. Right? Right!  That which doesn't kill you even tho it might make you feel like it had. So I'm checking it out.

Spending time at Atlas made me think of...and miss very much...my house. I won't lie, the transition from my last house to my current space has not been without a small amount of wistfullness that every now and then has hovered into regret. I miss my privacy. I miss how I had control over my privacy. Cleanliness. The killer sunset views. Having a garage. The quiet. I really miss the quiet. And the sun. I got lots of sunlight in my house. Here? Only in the morning.

Yes, my current commute is much less. And I save tons of $$ in gas. And I am much closer to work/Boulder/the great majority of my friends. But more and more I realize my current space is nothing more than a temporary space. Initally I'd figured on staying here until I was ready to buy my next place. Now? Not sure about that plan. I need sun. I need a little more room that might give me a little more privacy. I'm in the process of figuring just what is a need and what is a want in Kathyland. Making a list and checking it tons of times.

So what is important to you in your living space? What is a NEED and not just a want? Where in this area has given you contentment? What did you think you needed to have as part of your living situation that you wound up not really needing? And what did you realize you MUST have to get thru each day?

Wound up my night by giving Andrew a ride home. The moonlight on the Flatirons was ethereal, ghostly and wicked cool. Tried to take a picture with my iPhone to share with you guys, but it didn't come out. No matter...hope you were lucky enough to see it for yourself. And to share it with some awesome friends :-)

The last thing I did once back home was browse some of my favorite Design & Decor blogs where I stumbled across this test. Which made me smile. Looks like I'm on the right track!




True Confessions : Why I Almost Didn't Go To Boulder Podcamp 2

...but I did and I'm glad I did and here's why!

To recap, Boulder PodCamp 2 was held last weekend. It kicked off Friday night and continued all day Saturday.

And I almost missed it. Why?

(huge transparency disclaimer) I was afraid. Yep, totally afraid. Afraid I wouldn't be 'geek' enough or 'techie' enough to get it. And by getting it I mean bringing something of value to the collective table.

(additional disclaimer) I have TONS of friends that are techie & geek. They are also incredibly brilliant, intelligent, kind, hilarious and best of all, welcoming! Never ever have I been laughed at in any tech / geek meetup, Tweetup, anything that I've attended. At least not here in CO.  So why was I afraid? When I compare my own paltry tech level to everyone else's, I feel I don't measure up. And I guess that bothers me. Which is why I was afraid. Ok, we've come full circle.

But I went anyway. Told myself I had promised Jeremy (aka Penguin) (Hi Jeremy!!) and I keep my promises so I went.

GOOD THING!

Sometimes I don't readily grasp the obvious. At least not right away. With the obvious being that no matter how techie/geeky/brilliant-like-all-get-out my friends are, they are still (wait for it)...my friends. And I have nothing to fear from friends. And by not going I would have missed out on a stellar opportunity to hang out, learn from, laugh with....my friends. And to meet new friends.

While I might not have the highest tech cred based on my knowledge of all things tech, I did figure out a way to contribute ie - bring something of value to the table. 

Bacon. From The Original Pancake House. And who introduced me to TOPH?  None other than Jeremy.

More full circle-ness.

So. If you're ever hesitant to attend anything tech-based, Boulder-based, Denver-based, geek-based? Don't be. There's nothing to be afraid of. Go even if you don't know a soul. Cause I will pretty much guarantee that by the time you leave, you'll have met at least one, if not lots, of wonderful new friends.

Jeremy, thanks for all the love & attention you put into BPC2. Sorry I couldn't stay til' the end and help clean up...I owe you for next time, ok?

xoxo,

Your low-tech bacon-lovin'-buddy Kath :-)

Putting The Whee In Weekend :-)

Had the best intentions of writing all about the fabulousness that was Boulder PodCamp 2 and all the amazing, fascinating, wonderfully authentic & genuine people that I knew, got to meet for the first time, and those I got to know a little better, (much to my delight!) that were a part of BPC2.

It was an awesome weekend that totally deserves a special post. And that it will get in the very near future.

But instead of telling you about these guys...

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And this darling sweetheart...

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I wound up with an ET finger...

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And checked out the next evening with a souvenir sippy cup...

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And got to leave the heart monitor cables & hanging bag o' drugs behind...

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Long story short, I left BCP2 in a huge amount of pain, convinced I was having a heart attack, GERD attack and maybe both. Drove home (and luckily made it without passing out which in retrospect was really dumb but oh well!) and by the time I got home felt like I was dying. Stomach pain + migraine + chills + severe dizziness. I'm not the type to want to bother anyone, so thought about sleeping it off. Then my gut feeling spoke up and told me to get myself to the ER, NOW!

So I did. Called into work to let them know what was going on (in case I couldn't call in later) and had my roomie take me to the nearest hospital, which happened to be Avista Adventist Hospital

I have to say it's one of the NICEST hospitals I've ever visited!  No one was in the ER (when does that EVER happen?) and I was seen in less than a minute.

I promised long story short and won't go into all the deets, but they didn't waste time with pain management. When the Fentanyl didn't work, they tried Dilaudid, then threw something even more powerful than that at me...which finally did the trick. While I talked on the phone to several family members, my BFF HDW (who is my go-to peep in times of family go-between) and one of my Mgrs, I have no idea what I said...or how I said it. So I apologize to those that I got overly mushy with...cause Kath on drugs is pretty much like Kath on 7+ Jagerbombs. 'Nuf said.

My ER Dr decided to admit me after the X-ray, Ultrasound and 2 CT's revealed reasons to keep me overnight. Got to my room close to 3 am and once they finished taking one more history, I fell asleep. For about 2 hours :-)  My Dad was worried and called my room at 6 am. Which I think was incredibly sweet :-)  It was also incredibly sweet how SO MANY OF YOU called and DM'd and emailed and so much more. Seriously, the kindness brought me to tears so many times that night and the next day. 

You are all so wonderful and each and every one of you made a huge difference in helping me get thru everything.

Where was I?  Oh yea...crying :-)

Got home around 6p Sunday night. Called into work and was told by 3 of my Mgrs to STAY HOME TODAY. So I listened...pretty rare, if you ask them...and wound up getting 12 1/2 hours of sleep and managed to get in to see my Primary Care Dr who helped me with several referral appts.

Prefer not to talk about what's going on in this public venue so all I'll say here is all the appts I needed to make were made today and I'm taking this whole experience very seriously.

What I will say is that procrastination, while never great, is definitely not good when it comes to your health. So please...if your Dr. tells you to get a test, or do something to create a healthier you, DO IT!  NOW!!

Not saying what happened could have been prevented...but it might have made finding some things out easier. Cryptic enough?  It'll have to be for now :-)

Thanks again to all of you for expressing concern & love & best wishes. You all rock, you really do.

And tomorrow?  Please come back to read all about Boulder PodCamp 2 :-)

1 Down...

16.76 to go.

The first '21 Days to Make/Break a Habit' is over. How did I do?  Am quite proud to say I PASSED!!  My goal was to forego Coke (as in soda) before noon for 21 days straight. It was hard at first, really hard. I love Coke! By starting the day with an icy cold Coke, my stomach was soothed and helped get my day off to a happy (albeit totally unhealthy) start.

It was hard making the transition once I started back to work after a 4 day vacay. I'd become so ingrained in stopping by Starbucks for my Venti glass of ice, dumping a brought-from-home Coke into the ice and getting my day off to a caffeinated start. Each day I told myself 'just do it for this one day'. Then I said it again and again until I stopped thinking about what not to have (a ha moment right there) and thought about what I COULD have.

Lately, I'd been waiting longer and longer to have my one Coke of the day and realized that there were days when I went without Coke...sorta forgot all about it, if you can believe that. I still can't!

As soon as I woke up Wednesday morning, I had the feeling I was close to my goal. Sure was....close as in THERE!  I was finished. And it felt pretty good to know that I'd played mindgames with myself (for the good of my health) and won!  Yay me!

So what is the end result? Do I feel healthier? Yeah, I guess. Wound up drinking lots more juice, milk and water than I was used to. Switched from full-size Coke cans to the mini-100 calorie cans. And best of all, didn't get ONE single migraine from foregoing Coke. Maybe cause I stayed super-hydrated? It's a possibility.

The only downside...if you want to call it that...way more frequent bathroom breaks. For me, drinking water or juice is like drinking beer...you don't drink it...you rent it! That took some getting used to.

All in all, I'm glad I did it. What did you do for your 21 Day Habit? I'm all ears!

Finally, I've picked out my 2nd Habit. This one's a Make.

To track my finances diligently, work up a financial plan, and in general clean up my financial foundation over the next 21 days. Splurged on a Financial Tracker tonite (it's functional AND stylish - double win!) and I can't wait to write in it and get that very important part of my life to a more controlled place.

Any tips, links, habits you've developed that you've found helpful, please do share!

And as always, check back in 21 days for the results!


Be Careful What You Wish For...

...for it just might change the way you view the world.

Back in July I'd reached out to some friends in search of new reading material. I'd asked people to list their top 3 favorite reads and my friend Larkin responded with the suggestion to read Three Cups of Tea

So I bought the book, along with several other books that were suggested by various friends... and then the book sat, collecting dust, until this last weekend when I added it to my backpack to read on my flight to and from California.

Once seated on my Southwest flight I cracked open the book  and quickly became engrossed in a true story of the most inspiring, fascinating and spellbinding 'man with a mission' I'd ever encountered.

Greg Mortenson delivered on a promise to build a school for Pakistani children in the village of Korphe and by doing so, singlehandly went on to enrich the lives of thousands of children - especially girls - throughout Pakistan.

His story is one of passion, hope, immense personal sacrifice and a razor-sharp focus to create a foundation of education.

While reading this book, I was oblivious to noise, turbulance, flight attendants and just about everything else associated with airline travel. I finished the book just minutes ago and couldn't wait to blog about it and beseech you to READ THE BOOK!

It's awesome, amazing and one you won't easily forget.

Thanks Larkin for the 411 on this wondefully delightful book!

373 รท 21 = 17.76

Talking about habits!

Back in the day when I lost 85 pounds, what helped me succeed was breaking old habits and making new ones. I'd often heard the saying "21 days to make/break a habit" so  decided to give it a try. What do you know, it worked. At least for me.

One of my habits that needed breaking was starting my day with a Venti glass of ice from Starbucks combined with a can of Coke. Granted, I usually didn't drink the whole thing but still...it always bothered me cause I knew it wasn't the healthiest way to start my day. I'd tried various juices before but none of them were satisfying and left me feeling hungrier than if I'd had nothing to eat. Tried water too, but water on an empty stomach first thing in the morning? Yuck :-(  (I'm not a coffee drinker - loathe the stuff - and not really a fan of tea  save for the 2 cups of tea I had at the Boulder Tea House one night last summer).

While  on vacation in California I stayed at my brother's house, where the only beverages in stock were water, orange juice and beer. I gave up beer for breakfast after college, I've already stated how I feel about water first thing in the morning, and while I used to LOVE OJ, after being diagnosed with GERD I stopped consuming citrus-based juices on the advice of my doctor. (Unless they were mixed with vodka and consumed on a summery evening. For the most part tho, I stayed citrus-free).

Hmmm.

Seeing as my GERD had practically dissapeared since getting a divorce & moving to CO, decided to take a walk on the wild side and give OJ a try again. Guess what?  No side effects. YIPPEE!

So I switched to juice as my preferred morning beverage and added  water later in the day. Same routine once I moved over to my parent's house, with milk substituted as another option. When I returned to CO post vacation and realized I'd not only had soda-free mornings since Dec 24, but my soda consumption in general had plummeted, decided this was a perfect jump-start to practice the 21 Day Habit theory. 

That got me to thinking about what habits I wanted to break & what habits were worth making for the rest of this year and how they could relate to the birthday resolutions I'd set for myself.

Hence 373 days (starting Dec 24) divided by 21 (the number of days you must consecutively do something to ingrain the habit into your lifestyle) = 17.76 total habits over the course of a year and a week.

SO!!  A new goal...not to mention a new blog post!

This excited me for several reasons!!  I love to plan. I love to have goals. I love ways to measure results. And I love to correct areas that I feel need correcting. (hey. it's the little things!!) :-)

I'll be making a list of my 17.76 habits to make or break and invite you to do the same. Mileage may vary depending on when you start, but if you started today, working on one habit every 21 days, you could accomplish 17.33 habits made/broken by the end of the year.

Breaking out a new category for this topic and every 21 days I'll post results...and if the habit stuck or not.

OK, off to have a glass of juice and get my day off to a healthy start :-)

Happy Saturday!