I will not be driving to Los Cabos on Wednesday to do a write-in. I will be staying at the Bixby Ihop location. There is a booth area that has an outlet, I can bring a surge protector for those who have laptops, and it's out of the way of the rest of the customers. For my Tulsa area friends, I know it's relatively short notice so it's a bit of an unofficial write-in. The first official one is a week from this Wednesday, on August 23rd. Just remember to bring some money in case you want to eat or drink anything. I am operating this like the NaNo write-ins done during NaNo months. I hope to do this weekly so as to get myself and my fellow writers back on track for writing and to give us all some amount of accountability when it comes to progress.
One thing I am doing to keep myself on task is to take pictures of my progress. I write by hand most of the time, and I carry mini notebooks with me at work so I can jot down whatever I can without having to carry my laptop with me or find a hiding spot for the larger notebook. It's a weird system, but it's currently working. I refuse to complain about that!
I've been making some changes for myself as of late. I'm trying to cut back on soda. I've gone like three or four days without drinking any soda. It's a bit of a struggle at times, especially when I start to feel like I'm dragging at work and I need a quick caffeine fix to get me going. I add things like cream and sugar/honey to my coffee, and it's not always feasible to stop in the middle of a rush to fix that cup of coffee to keep me going. I managed to get through this weekend quite all right so I'm quite proud of myself on that. It's just a matter of keeping that streak going!
For my coffee now, I'm avoiding flavored creamers. It's difficult because I do love caramel and chocolate in my coffee. When finances allow, I'll be buying some bags of caramel to melt in my coffee. I do try to avoid sugar in my coffee. At home, I have honey and milk, but at work I've been using sugar packets. Real sugar, not any of our sugar substitutes as I question whether or not Smuckers Honey is as natural as they claim it to be. I have used it, it is tasty, but I also admit to being a bit lazy and not wanting to mess with the little packages that the honey comes in.
Our household is making changes, too. My mom and stepdad are (finally) getting away from margarine for cooking. It's all real butter now so yum there.
Trying to eat healthier is not always easy. It is not as cheap as people like to think that it is. Saturday, after work, I stopped at the neighborhood Market (Wal-Mart) where my mom works to give her the daily rent money and to do so some shopping for myself. I had about $20 to spend plus I needed to set aside some for some major projects I have coming up over the next two years. I picked up four small containers of Greek yogurt (not what I wanted but that particular Wally no longer has what I want), one container of orange juice, two oranges, a mango, a Fuji apple (I'm picky about apples), a quart of strawberries, two cucumbers, a lemon, a lime, two bananas, and a peach for a little over $17 after taxes. This is food that will not keep for weeks on end. It's food I need to eat within the next day or so before it spoils.
I did manage to get the lemon, lime, and one of the cucumbers utilized for a water infusion (it's so yum). My bananas are gone along with one of the oranges.
This is food that I love. I don't buy food that I hate because it's healthy for me. I buy healthy foods that I love. And, even shopping at places like Wal-Mart and Aldi's, it isn't cheap. I don't always have enough money to buy the healthy foods. But I'm still going to try because I do believe in the adage that my body is my temple. I wouldn't dream of ever desecrating sacred grounds, a church, a mosque, a temple, or any other religious structure. So it begs the question, because I also believe we house the Divine within us, why do I treat my body any differently than I would an outside structure that's considered holy, divine, sacred, and all of these other wondrous things? The answer is I shouldn't because my body is going to be with me a lot longer than a church or a temple. I'm slightly nomadic at heart. I can't carry an actual temple with me when I travel to places.
I'm working on making other changes, too. Part of why I've chosen to self-publish for the foreseeable future is I like the print-on-demand option. I like that it helps to reduce the mass destruction of old growth forests and the air pollution from the dyes and inks used for books. I still love paperbacks and hard covers, but I also like to have options when it comes to reading and to publishing. Yeah, I'm not entirely thrilled that my car is not as fuel-efficient as it could be, but I also know my car gets better than other types of vehicles in the same vehicle class. And I do what I can to make sure my car remains fuel-efficient. (To note on my car: I'm not trading her in any time soon. I still owe $6500 on her, and one of the last times I traded in a Ranger for another Ranger to get out of a high interest, yet low payment, loan, the newer Ranger ended up repossessed because I fell behind on the payments. I'm not interested in going through that again. I'm not interested in having a finance company call me up and threaten me the way National City did back in the early part of the 2000s. I love my Sigyn. She is precisely what I have wanted for a few years now, and I want to keep her for as long as I possibly can. I'm not someone who gets a car and trades it in every year and a half to two years. I dislike that about the previous generations, how they were so "throw it away/get rid of it for something newer and supposedly better" so it's something I'm avoiding for myself. When the time comes to say goodbye to my Sigyn, I will, but now is not that time.)
Most of the changes I want to make - reducing the amount of toilet paper I use, cutting out processed sugar, and so on - will be starting at home. I have plans to go greener at home than what I currently am. One of the things I do like about Tulsa is they require recycling be done at home. So we do recycle. It's probably one of the few things I like about Tulsa (other than the very wonderful people I have met here - Erika, Grover, Shelby, Sarah, Nakia, Zach, Max,Terry, Jason; I'm looking at you guys! Chris, I ain't sure about you just yet, but we're getting there), expect the place is still has a lot of litter and dirt on the roads. Yes, the litter bugs me as does the lack of street cleaning trucks. Ah but change begins within, right? Right!
So baby steps with the health and the green living.
Have a great Monday, guys! Today is the start of me doing word sprints! Here we go!