Continual Unwanted Contact

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If you find yourself continuing to message a former lover who doesn’t respond, you are harassing them. Blocking them right after you message them to complain they haven’t responded is childish. So childish that Peter Pan wouldn’t approve.

Mentioning you’ve watched them walk by at the mall or movie theatre and that you read their blog is creepy. It’s you hoping to stay connected to them in some small way because you haven’t figured out how to move on with your life.

Being the object of an obsessed person’s fantasies is something no one should have to put up with. This is something I have been dealing with for nearly a year now. I won’t continue to suffer in silence and I won’t continue to accept this behaviour.

For more information on stalking behaviours, which include, but are not limited to: showing up unexpectedly on someone’s doorstep, asking their friends for updates on their lives, and continually messaging them claiming they still have items of yours that you know damn well they don’t have, check out this link.

R~

2020 Vision

HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!

WHAT I’VE BEEN UP TO

Mostly, I’ve been planning for the new year, but I discovered I know Twinkle Twinkle Little Star. It was a recollection under the influence that brought it to light. I also discovered I still suck at drawing, but I’m okay with that. I used to think I had to be good at everything, and I’ve realized that’s just not so.

Some friends and I recently hit up a local board game pub. It was a pretty fun night. The first game was Balderdash and I was terrible at it. Because I was the writer in the group, my friends thought I should be more embarrassed about it and hide the fact that I don’t spend all my free time learning advanced vocabulary. But I’m not upset about it. Why? Two reasons: 1. I now know what I don’t know. 2. If one takes a close look at the top selling novels on the market, the level of the language used is not the level of many of the words in Balderdash. Not that I’m comparing my own work to those, but audience is what matters in writing. To me, it is far better to ensure the reader gets most of what I am trying to convey. Unless I’m writing about glaciers, I probably don’t need to know the meaning of moraine, however, I do have an interest in geology, so it might be something I care to put time into knowing eventually.

We also played Secret Hitler and I do think that Secret Hitler is missing some nuance and trickery to be a truly excellent game. Imagine if your Secret Role card didn’t match your Party Identity and you could be a plant in the opposite party! It would be more realistic. It could also be more fun if the policies said something related to an actual party stance. Or maybe the whole game would devolve if it got too close to reality. I think it would be fun to play with my political meetup group. A number of them are hawkish and at an intellectual level I’m not sure I will ever reach no matter how many books I read.

I’ve also been firming up my goals. A number of people in a journaling group I belong to are doing a 20 in 20 goal list, so I jumped on that bandwagon. It’s given me something more concrete to measure against. I’ve come up with 20 goals that all have 20 involved in some way. More to come on that later in this post.

Speaking of goals, I can’t remember if I posted this at any point during the last year, but January 1st seems like a good time to post or repost it:

Assuming you sleep 8 hours each day and are awake the rest of the time, it means you have 112 hours each week to get everything done in. Now, maybe you work full-time at 40 hours, so you have something more around 72 hours available to you. What do you do with those 72 hours? How much of it is spent on Facebook? On Netflix? How many times have you said you would do something like write a book, get fit, learn to draw, learn a language, learn an instrument, or something else, but you ‘don’t have the time’? Yes, eating, chores, commuting, and other things like hygiene take up some time too, so it’s less than 72, which means it’s all the more important to choose how you spend it carefully. And yes, some of you have children and they take up some of that time, but you improving yourself is good for them too. Kids often idolize their parents. They’re watching you. A child that knows his or her parent is there for them while working on their own goals shows the child that each day is meant to be lived to the fullest.

MY 20 IN 2020

FINANCES

  • 20 minutes of budgeting per week

FITNESS

  • 20 home-cooked meal days per month (approx 60/91.5 meals per month)
  • 20 workouts minimum per month
  • 20 lbs lost
  • 20 kata memorized

FRENCH

  • 20 minutes of French per day
  • 20 French words learned per month

HOME

  • 20 minutes of chores per day
  • 20 pages digitized per month

PIANO

  • 20 minutes of piano per day
  • 20 songs learned on piano
  • 20 piano scales
  • 20 minutes of theory per week

SELF-CARE

  • 20 minutes of knitting per day
  • 20 minutes of planning per day
  • 20 minutes of meditation per day

WRITING

  • 20 minutes of grammar per week
  • 20 new English words per month
  • 20 pages written per month (approx. 5000 wds)
  • 20 books read this year

Well, I have a lot I’m aiming to accomplish this year. First up, brunch and then I think I’ll put away the Yule tree.

Rae

End of the Round and 2020 Goals – ROW80 2019 R4-21

I can’t believe the year is up already! As usual, I found my motivation late. I’m going to keep going with my writing over the break as I’m trying to establish good habits and a schedule that works for me.

I’m also a little relieved that it is the final check in for 2019. It has been a hectic year and I could use a breather on a lot of things.

I’ve been preparing for this goals post for a couple of weeks now. I got some things done in 2019, but I don’t feel like I have enough to show for it in terms of my writing progress. Next year, I’m doing things a little differently to hopefully meet more of my targets. I have sections in my planner where I can log my progress. Many of my goals are actually habit tracking exercises.

FINANCES

2019: Target – I will get a new job after this contract finishes.

2019: Actual – I secured a full-time permanent job in the department I previously temped in. My car was paid off. One credit card was paid off. The other credit card is close to paid off. I have been making regular payments on my student loan. This is all a drastic improvement!

2020: I have created a savings plan and a payments tracker. I am creating a budget. I have to figure out what I’m doing with my investments as switching to a different financial planner didn’t work out.

FRENCH

2019: Target – I will learn all the most common words and phrases this year.

2019: Actual – I had to abandon this as life got too hectic with a new job and other pressures.

2020: Target – 15 minutes a day and 320 new words or phrases. Part of my savings will go to learning more French.

HEALTH & FITNESS

2019: Target – I will regularly practice and challenge Sandan.

2019: I hardly went to martial arts this year between life and a broken toe. I have a new doctor now and am getting back on track.

2020: I have created a Jodo & Iaido tracker as well as a workout log. I don’t typically go to martial arts on Tuesday nights because it has me out too late, which makes me tired for work all the rest of the week. That being said, I can still put time aside at home for self study to learn the names of the katas, footwork, theory, draws and notos, and things I haven’t thought of yet. I’ve done most kata, but I can’t remember the names or orders of many of the koryu for iaido. I barely know any kata for jodo. There’s a lot I can learn without even having a weapon in my hands. I can use a ruler or something to get a large amount of the rest down pat. I have an exercise schedule that I plan to get into. There is already space in my planner devoted for it. I am also on the hunt for a new dentist that direct bills.

HOME

2019: Target – I will finish decluttering and fix up my bathroom. I will work on developing more close friendships and make time for my relationship.

2019: Actual – I made huge strides in the declutter efforts and on some other home projects. While there is still quite a lot to do, I feel pretty good about where I’ve gotten. I had to end the relationship for my own happiness and health. I do feel like I have become closer with several of my friends though.

2020: I want to do more cooking this year, so I will be tracking how much I eat in vs out each week. This will likely save me money too. I will also be continuing the declutter and efforts to make my home nicer. Also built into my schedule is fun time like gaming. I joined a D&D group and also want to spend a little more time playing video games because they really help me unwind from the stresses of the week.

PIANO

2019: Target – Trumpet: I will get my embouchure back. (Oops!)

2019: Actual – I didn’t do much with trumpet, but got into piano instead. I took lessons for awhile until I found they really weren’t working for me. I really enjoy the piano though and decided to self study.

2020: Target – I have a log to track how regular my playing is. There is a section with room for 80 songs, which may be a bit ambitious, but some songs are small or rudimentary like Mary Had a Little Lamb. I’ll be studying the chord method, which is supposed to allow one to learn songs quickly. I’m continuing with the 3 days per week that I’ve already established.

READING

2019: Target – I will read 8 books or more.

2019: Actual – I have read 13 books.

2020: Target – 16 books.

SPIRITUALITY

2019: I never set out to figure this out in 2019, but it happened and I feel like it was important for catharthis in some areas of my life.

2020: I’m going to continue down the path through books, events, meeting other people, and see where it leads me.

WRITING

2019: Targets | The Blood Waitress Club – I will complete a first draft. | Puppy Chow – I will search for a producer. | Crisis – I will revise this and enter it into contests. | The Page & The Magician (a.k.a. Sparks) – I will query agents.

2019: Actual – I feel like I made progress, but not as much as I would have liked. I did go through a lot of learning with my book and changed the country it’s set in and its genre, which were pretty major changes that have set me on a path that I think has improved the story and the level of my writing though. Version 5 of the novel was at 67,417 words and Version 6 is at 74,512, so I think I can definitely say progress has been made.

2020: Target – Get one novel (Sparks) and one screenplay (The Mockumentary) submitted. Once I finish Sparks, I will next work on The Blood Waitress Club in terms of novels.

R~

A Happy Side Effect – ROW80 2019 R4-20

Two years have passed since I put it together, but it’s finally on the wall!

Planning is helping me out in ways I never thought it could. Just by getting everything out of my head, it’s calming the overthinking that usually dominates my mind. I think this is because I’ve dealt with the items when I put them down on paper even if there is still work to do. It’s like my mind was continually nagging at me to listen to it and by writing it out, I have.

This week I got so much done.

  • My tree has been decorated. I even hand made bows out of ribbon for it.
  • My desktop has been reorganized.
  • The work phone is no longer having a connection problem.
  • After accidentally sleeping in, I fixed my alarm clock.
  • On the 5th, I watched Krampus: The Christmas Devil for Krampusnacht.
  • It’s been a long haul, but I finally got my Great Wave off Kanagawa picture up on the wall!
  • I put gas in my car.
  • I watched the first two seasons of Rick and Morty.
  • On Sparks, I upped my word count slightly and also figured out a problem with the novel.
  • The planning for 2020 is nearly complete.

HEALTH & FITNESS

I’ve been sucking here. I’m not sure what I need to do to get motivated in this area.

HOME

I’ve been cleaning a little here and there. Putting things away is getting easier. I’ve decided to work from home one day each week, so that will give me some time back since I won’t have to commute on that day. I’m looking forward to it.

PIANO

I’m excited about my practice log. Lately, I’ve just been toying around with seasonal songs. The ones I don’t know are good sight-reading exercises. The ones I do know are motivating.

READING

I’m still reading Stephen King’s Thinner. I’m so close to the end. I have a bad feeling about it. I hope he doesn’t end it the way it looks like it will go.

  • 2/3

WRITING

I’ve made a little more progress on Sparks. I got stuck though. The first chapter has improved a lot and I’m pleased with it to a point. There’s a spot where the tone changes and I can’t seem to get it to fit with the rest of the chapter, so I’m moving it to Chapter Two. When I let myself do that, it was like I realized that is obviously what I should do in that situation. I also wondered why the hell it took me so long to come to that realization.

Sparks

  • 74,347/80,000

R~

Planning – ROW80 2019 R4-19

Having a schedule is helping a lot. Sure, I’m not always getting to everything on my list, but some is more than none.

I have planners on the mind a lot lately. One of my first planners was a Day-Timer. There were a lot of things I liked about it like the ring binder style, but I last used it for taking notes at a writing conference and stopped planning in it.

During school, I used a large Mead planner to keep track of assignments. It was good for what I needed then.

I then tried a Bullet Journal, but it was too time intensive to do spreads regularly and I felt like I was planning more than I was doing.

For a bit after that, I had a Travel Planner, but it didn’t really fit me either.

Lately, I’ve been surviving with a pocket Mead, but it hasn’t really fit either.

What I discovered is that I need a hybrid method. I’m currently waiting for an A5 Filofax to come. It has a ring binder style like my Day-Timer and some premade pages. I can also get refills that include dot sheets like a Bujo, lined sheets, blank sheets, and possibly even grid sheets.

I’m going to like being able to easily remove pages for archiving. I will still use travellers notebooks for writing purposes because I can carry several small and lightweight notebooks with me to be able to write notes for several projects in their own separate books. And I’m going to make my own. I have a super stapler specifically for things like this and lined paper. I got some cover paper and I’m good to go. I’m going to colour code writing projects!

Anyway, one thing I’m unsure of is planner methodology. I’ve heard of the Bullet Journal Method and the Getting Things Done (GTD) Method, but I don’t know what else is out there aside from advanced project management methods of planning. If you know of some others, please leave a comment!

HEALTH & FITNESS

I’ve got myself a new schedule, which includes daily exercise, meditation, learning, and fun. I haven’t been getting everything done, but I have been getting a lot more done than I was.

I swung my sword a bit on Tuesday. It felt good to pull it out even if I didn’t last long. With winter tires on my car now, I can get my butt back to the dojo 🙂

HOME

I cleaned up an area of my bedroom. I’m feeling pretty motivated right now, so I’ve been looking through outstanding projects. I have a small Harry Potter blanket that needs repair, for example. It’s stuffing didn’t stay in place, so it’s lumpy and weird. I’m hoping I can just open it on one end, straighten it out, close it, then add stitching to keep it in place in the future.

PIANO

I’ve been sucking here. Not totally. I DID make a practice log. I didn’t get far with it yet though.

  • Let It Be
  • Lean on Me
  • Jurassic Park

READING

I’m still reading Stephen King’s Thinner. It’s getting really intense. He’s so great at switching from prose to dialogue without disrupting the flow. And even switching from one character’s POV to another’s without making it confusing!

  • 2/3

WRITING

I’ve made some progress on Sparks, which has pushed me above 74,000! I don’t want to get ahead of myself, but I think I’m going to be above my goal long before the end.

Sparks

  • 74,265/80,000

R~

Exhausted – ROW80 2019 R4-18

Friday was a hectic day as I took on a new role at work. I’ve been preparing for it for awhile, but there were some scenarios I didn’t have notes for. Thankfully, Friday was also the evening of our company holiday party and the woman I’m covering maternity leave for was there. I got clarification on a few things and I feel much more confident at this point.

That all being said, Friday had a few other things going on. I had to take my summer tires out of my car as I was driving my guest to the party too. I was worried I would break a nail while doing that. The tires went fine in terms of my nails, but they kept falling off of my cart because they are lighter than my winter tires. When I finally got them all put away, I hurt my thumb on a cardboard box of all things. I didn’t break my nail, but perhaps bent it, which is the only thing I can see as there was no blood or anything but pain.

Eventually, I was ready for the party except I didn’t have earrings that would go with my necklace, which meant I had to go to the mall. On Black Friday. I parked far away, so that I could leave the mall easier, but it was quite fresh outside as I was wearing a skirt for the party. I ended up getting six pairs of earrings because it was a Buy 3 Get 3 deal, so I have a few more options now.

Then it was off to pick up my friend. Uh-oh, wrong part of the highway over there, so I got stuck in traffic for awhile. And because I forgot to have lunch, I was quite hangry by this point, so that’s probably why I got off at the wrong exit later on thinking I was on the road I really wanted to be on. Except none of the landmarks I know were there. And I saw the other end of a street that I didn’t know went as far as it did. All this kind of freaked me the fuck out.

I made it to my friend’s after nearly an hour of getting lost, so I was glad to have a little moment to catch my breath. The drive to the party was smooth. We ended up there early though because the traffic was gone by that point. We both had a good time.

Other than feeling a bit crappy from too much Red Bull on Friday, Saturday was productive.

Today has been fairly productive too. I didn’t make it to martial arts, but I’m actually trying not to drive too much because my front tires are being replaced on Monday. Instead, I’m continuing getting myself organized for the rest of the year and hopefully into the next one.

HEALTH & FITNESS

I’ve got myself a new schedule, which includes daily exercise, meditation, learning, and fun.

HOME

I made progress on getting my Wave picture on the wall. I had to open it back up to fix the gravity issue. It wasn’t without a blood sacrifice and it wasn’t the best time to remember I need to buy band-aids. I now have a box of colourful ones as Canadian Tire only had children’s band-aids.

This weekend I dusted off my old planner and started retaking control of my life, which feels pretty good. I’ve been wasting a lot of time lately and have some goals I’d like to push forward on. This was partly instigated by a friend inviting me to a minimalist bullet journal group on Facebook. I even ordered myself some stickers! I’m now using my older journal as a home projects journal. I had tried to do everything in one journal back in those days and found myself constantly recopying everything to move them forward. I spend so much time planning, there wasn’t much for doing! My ideal schedule is in Google Calendar. I have a small Mead journal for my daily todo stuff and at-a-glance month plans like outings. The little one is the only one I’m taking with me these days.

It’s amazing how taking a few moments to plan can help me get more done.

My desk has been cleaned up. I’m aiming to get a monitor soon to make working from home easier, but I think it will also be helpful with writing. I’ll need a little dongle for my Surface though.

PIANO

I am starting the chord-based way of learning piano. We’ll see how it goes. I spent less than what I was spending monthly on lessons to learn for many days to come.

  • Let It Be
  • Lean on Me
  • Jurassic Park

READING

I’m about three quarters of the way through Stephen King’s Thinner. I’ve had to up my reading goal several times this year to see how many books I can actually get through in a year where I’m not in school. Most of my reading is done during my commute, so it doesn’t even impact the rest of my time, yet I’ve gotten further than I ever thought I would.

  • 2/3

WRITING

I’ve moved Grim Ties off my to-do list for now as I want to just focus on Sparks. I’ve taken a little break this weekend and plan to get back at it next week.

Sparks

  • 74,016/80,000

R~

Reducing – ROW80 2019 R4-17

I’ve been really focused on reducing things in my life lately that aren’t bringing me joy. One of those things is formal piano lessons. I gave up on the formal lessons for now. I just don’t have the time and it’s turned something I enjoyed into something less fun. My teacher was awesome, but I need less on my to do list. I’m going to keep playing regularly at home though. I just felt like someone else would benefit from the time with her more and I’m sure someone out there wants lessons as a Christmas gift. With that said, I’m going to focus on learning music I like and using some songs I don’t to stretch my skills. I need to get into playing with a metronome, but I think I’m going to put it at a slower speed just to get comfortable with it. I think the money I’m going to save on lessons, I’ll put towards a Soundbrenner Pulse.

Also, tickets to concerts. I thought I had missed a band I really like. Then it came up in my Facebook notifications and even though it’s not until August, I got myself a ticket.

Another area is extra martial arts. I think I’m past the point of trying new arts or “collecting kata” as my Grand Sensei might call it. Not that I’m disinterested in learning new things, but I don’t want to commit to those new things the way I do with my other two arts. I decided this one in part while I was at a seminar this weekend. There was nothing bad about it, but while a friend was describing one of the kata at dinner, I could see he was really passionate about it. I didn’t feel that way at all about it. In the end, I just missed the arts I do practice.

Though it has been a short time, I like having less formal bookings on my schedule. I feel a little less stressed and like I have more time for the things I enjoy. I also like not having to leave home as much.

HEALTH & FITNESS

I’m working on getting my medical records transfered to my new doctor.

I also want to get back to skating regularly. I briefly thought about joining a gym, but realized I really just need to get back to skating. Skating, Martial Arts, and some home activities like my glider and Rushfit are more than enough for me to get back into shape. And the money I save can go toward a trip.

HOME

I haven’t done much on the declutter recently, but will get back to it soon. I have written a little plan to deal with the paper portion. I think that is going to be a huge deal once I get going on it. I think I’ll start this Saturday.

PIANO

I’m thinking about trying out the chord-based way of learning piano. It’s supposed to be a quick way to learn. I found an online course that is inexpensive and the bonus is that I won’t have to drive anywhere in bad weather or schedule around it.

  • Let It Be
  • Lean on Me
  • Jurassic Park

READING

I’m about two thirds of the way through Stephen King’s Thinner. I’m really enjoying it and wondering how it’s going to end.

  • 2/3

WRITING: GRIM TIES

I haven’t done more on this project yet.

  • 9,525/50,000

WRITING: SPARKS

I’ve been scaling back to be able to do more on this one.

  • 73,744/80,000

R~