Monday, April 10

The Perfect Date

Have you seen Miss Congeniality? Then you've probably seen this image floating around. 

 I'd like to know, where do you live... and what is your ideal date?

When I was in Phoenix, Arizona... and my idea date was December 13th. When I was in school, I'd get out at around that time. The weather is perfect. It's when we get to wear boots and coats and drink warm tomato soup with grilled cheese because it's cold outside. It's so close to Christmas time and there's so much to look forward to. I know a ton of December birthdays, not to mention all your friends and family returning home. 

On the other hand, this year in Seattle, I can't wait for a warm spring day. 

Monday, March 20

Snapshot of Snapchat

Snapchat makes me feel like an old man. Not even an old woman, but an old man. I didn't get Snapchat for the longest time and thought it was only for dirty pictures... then of course, I was confused as to why so many "normal" people had Snapchat. 

Now that I have it though, I think it's so much fun! Since the pictures don't last, I'm much less concerned about quality than on something like Twitter or Instagram. Snapchat a great tool to informally keep in touch with people and inform them of what you're doing. Since people can choose to look at your story, it's unlike a facebook post where it's sharing with hundreds of people against their will. 
Do you use Snapchat? You can find me under seven-percent

Don't use Snapchat? Find me on Twitter with seven_percent.

Monday, February 27

My Life is Average Monday: Catch 22 of Dating

unrelated photo
If you're not familiar, Catch 22 is an American novel about soldiers trying to escape military service. In order to leave the army, these soldiers had to write a logical, well reasoned essay to claim they were insane and therefore unfit for service. After reviewing the essay army superiors would obviously claim that anyone who had written such an argument could not be insane. Others, who were actually mentally unwell, could not write this essay and remained in the military as well. Therefore, either way, soldiers had to remain in service. This no-win scenario is now referred to as a Catch 22. 

But what is the Catch 22 of dating? Well, a desirable date is someone who is fun, outgoing, and has an active social life. But someone who is looking for a significant other may be lonely... which is why they are looking for someone. Especially after a break up, it can be impossible to pull yourself out of a funk and go out and have fun again. But the dating pool doesn't exactly reward these individuals. Without interesting friends and hobbies, it's hard make conversation!

Monday, February 6

2017 Resolutions

For my resolutions this year, I decided to separate it out into different categories. My intention in doing this was to make sure that I was keeping a balanced life and progressing on all of these areas. I created these resolutions after thinking about my last year's resolutions

For the record, this picture doesn't relate to this post at all. 
But just look at how happy I am with this giant dog. 

1. Career - Set work/life balance. 

I am overall, pretty satisfied with work. However, one big complaint is that work takes so much time and I feel like I don't have the time to pursue passions outside of work. So this year, I aim to set a balance with work. I want to be able to leave work at work and not stress about it outside. I want to be able to leave work at a set time, rather than when I physically can't work anymore. My goal is to work more when I'm at work instead of goofing off and learn to be more efficient with my time. 

2. Physical - Be mindful about health

This is a refresh of my goals from last year, though I'm going to focus more on diet and nutrition than exercise. I'd like to cut out more dairy - especially those Starbucks drinks! I'd also like to substitute more veggies for pasta and rice. Finally, I have plans to do a few "eat at home" challenges to encourage me to bring more food to work. I've already done one of them this week and I'm already noticing how it's helping me eat just a bit less. 

3. Creative - Keep chasing beauty.  

Over the last year, I've picked up a few hobbies: calligraphy and watercoloring. I was inspired by how popular these hobbies have gotten in the blogging realm. I'm not good by any means, professional or amateur, but they bring me happiness. And if it's relaxing and makes me happy, I'll pursue it!

4. Travel - Plan it, and it will happen. 

Oh, where in the world do I want to go this year? There are a few trips that I know I want to take. Portland, for one. And I want to fly to visit a friend. That's for sure. Otherwise, my plans are hazier. I'd like to do an international trip to an small island or to Australia, but that might be in the books for 2018 rather than this year. 

5. Mental - Pursue knowledge. 

I'm a few years out of school now and I feel like to a certain extent I've stopped learning. Of course, through out the course of life, I'm learning a lot of life lessons, and I learn a lot at work, but it's not quite the same as in school. This year, I want to do something to encourage my learning and professional development. There are plenty of courses to take online and maybe I'll attend a lecture or two!

6. Relational - Don't be a loner. 

Let me be honest here. I have no friends. I'm kinda okay with that, but I feel like in the long run, I should make some friends because that's healthy and stuff. So, I started a list in my bullet journal to do one social activity a week. I'm 0/4 in January so far, but you know, it's all about improvement!

Monday, January 9

Chicago Days 3 & 4

I started recapping my Chicago trip so long ago. See parts 1 and 2 here.  But obviously, I have to finish!

Saturday - 11/8/14 - Brunch and museums!

On Saturday morning, I had the best pancake I'd never had. Ever. And probably will ever have. 

Let's start from the beginning. The goal on Saturday was to explore the Museum of Science and Industry. This came very highly recommended and I love museums, so I thought to give it a try! I rode out on the L like I had the day before to get to another line to reach the museum. After the 30 minute ride on the L, I got hungry, so I jumped off and looked for a nearby breakfast location. A quick yelp search brought me to The Bongo Room. When I got there, I knew I had found the right place as the wait was about 40 minutes long. After being seated, I split some red velvet pancakes and a breakfast burrito with my dining partner. With the red velvet and the glaze, I thought for sure that the pancakes were going to be too sweet, but to my surprise, they weren't. They were dense and subtly flavored. The breakfast burrito was good... but not life changing. 

By the time breakfast was done, it was around 1:30 in the afternoon. Instead of bothering with the train, I hitched an Uber ride to the museum. I only spent a few hours in the Museum. It was full of well.... science. There were exhibits about storms and a miniature Seattle with a train running through it. While I enjoyed the Submarine Exhibit, I'm not sure I could ever submerge in a submarine! I think I would be too scared. Another favorite exhibit was "Yesterday's Main Street" where we got to see an American street in the early 1900s. 

After spending some time there, I went to UChicago. Oh! How I wish I had gotten accepted there back in the day. Visiting probably would have made me try harder on my application. I loved the small old homes, bookstores and churches. The diners really made me wish I had lived there. I stepped in a few of the local bookstores as the sun set outside. In all honesty, I was looking forward to meeting Dan Pashman, who was promoting his book, the Sporkful (titled after a podcast of the same name), but a few misteps and spending too long at the museum delayed me. Still though, walking around the campus was wonderful. 

Dinner that night was at Goose Island Brewery. If you're a casual drinker with an awareness of beer brands, you've heard of this brand. While the food was nothing to write home about, the beers were great! I really enjoyed some of the beers! If I remember correctly, Sofie was my favorite. I think I'm a fan of sweet and sour tastes. 

Sunday - 11/9/15 - Chicago Field Museum

Sunday was my last day, and mostly spent in the Chicago Field Museum. This was one of my most favorite places. The biggest attraction for me was seeing the Ghost and the Darkness, two man eating lions from the Tsavo region in Africa. 

There were plenty of other awesome sights in the museum though. There was an exhibit dedicated to the religion of voodoo in Haiti, a hall of diamonds and rare gems, and a rich history of tribes native to the northwest US. It was also home to the largest T-Rex fossil. 

A quick lunch wrapped up this fun trip. A fancy hot pocket and stuffed mushroom, featured below. 

Monday, January 2

New Year Resolution Reflection

Now that it is 2017, I wanted to reflect on some of the goals I set out in 2016. Just comes along with loving the planner community and the bullet journals!

1. Stop worrying about work for the next 6 months. Long story short, I got on a project that is long, unique and outside of the office. For the past few months, I've been extremely worried about about the project. 

Goal Achieved? Mostly. 

My reckless optimism was unwarranted. And it got a hell of a lot worse before it got better. The worst bits had be crying in my car everyday after work. The best bits gave me so much perspective. 2015 was such a great year for my career. It seemed like I found success in everything I did. 2016 was quite different but I'm still at the same job, so it can't be that bad! 

 2. Keep Active. I'm not going to set a goal of losing a certain amount of weight, but I do want to keep active and moving.

Goal Achieved? Not really. 

I didn't even go to the boxing gym I signed up for 12 times in this past year. I have found success in wearing a fitbit and keeping my updated with my stats and my steps, for most weeks. I'll probably reformulate this goal somewhat for the new year. Typical... This was when I did step outside for once to Deception Point.

 3. Write letters to friends. 

Goal Achieved? Barely. 

So, yes. I have created several letters to be sent to friends. I have purchased water colors and practiced brush script (which still looks awful compared to others). I have not actually sent out a single letter. But that's what the new year is for, right?

 4. Cook! 

Goal Achieved? Indirectly. 

So, I have adequately developed my cooking skills in this past year. I have tackled cake making, sangria mixing, and various other dishes. But, my SO, has improved by leaps and bounds. He's gone from making very ... meaty steak to making Thai food, Korean food and improving in American, Mexican and Italian. It may not be all my skill and effort... but I'd call this one a win. Also, I made an entire dungeness crab! 

 5. Travel out of the country. 

Goal Achieved? Yep. 

I had already booked the tickets for my China trip at the time i wrote this last year, but I think the year's been pretty solid in terms of travelling. 

In this next year, I definitely have goals that I'll have to reformulate and try for again, but all things considering, not terrible! 

Monday, December 19

Favorite Dates

Quality time. What does that even mean? After moving in with my partner, I've grown to realize that it's about continuing to get to know the other person and to grow with them as they grow. It makes sense if you think about it. What's a common reason for divorce? Irreconciable differences. "Oh... we just grew apart over time." 

That's just the issue, isn't it? I think the most successful couples that I see grow with each other over time. They make each other better. 

This is where quality time comes it. It's so easy to live with someone, to see them every day and not really know them. However, as it comes to exploring new ideas, it can be hard to push each other forward in the same direction. 
check out the awesome hair I have going on here.
1. Visit the Theatre - Or go fancy! Amidst the monotony of living together, the chores, the kids, the long days at work, it's no wonder that things get boring. What do new couples do? They do hot air balloon rides and surprise road trips and spontaneous spa days. What do "old" couples do? A movie night once in a while? A nice dinner out? By going fancy, you get to inject spice and newness into your relationship. Sure, it might be expensive, but saving a few dinner dates for a mystery dinner theatre show would be worth it. 

2. Do Something Physical (see photo above!) - I read somewhere long ago that physical activity really helps body chemistry in developing attraction. I'm going to butcher the science, but there's some chemical reaction where physical exercise causes endorphins that make you like who you spend time with. A physical date helps keeps the both of you in shape, is challenging, and is out of the norm! 

3. Active over Passive - I love watching a movie in theatres as much as the next person, but sometimes you need to be more engaged... more focused on each other, if you will. I feel that this is the main distinction between "time", and "quality time". You have to take this opportunity to check in with your partner. Do so like you would a long time friend, sure, you might talk every day, but how often do you take a step back and talk about the big picture? Or really talk about the details more than that surface level conversation really allows?

Any other awesome date ideas? 
What do you like to do?