Thursday, 26 February 2009


Ye gods, I'm exhausted. I'm so stressed, and my feet hurt, and my legs hurt, and my back refuses to relax. I'm so tired. At least I'm better than yesterday, when I was so tired I got dizzy, had to hold on to a table to stop from swaying, was getting double vision from sheer exhaustion.

I feel much more tired than yesterday. Maybe it's a delayed reaction thing. Overtime today, overtime Tuesday. At work for thirteen hours. Thirteen hours of a good working environment, but I get myself so stressed out trying to do all of my work perfectly, crossing every t, dotting every i. I haven't had an error since I started at work; I want to keep it that way. But doing my work perfectly means I'm slower than pretty much everyone else who races through and doesn't check what they should be checking.

I'm so tired.

I don't want work to claim my life, so on Tuesday I specifically did not go to go to bed as soon as I got home. I don't want to leave work, go to bed, get up and go to work again. That's not a good life.

On the other hand, a life where I was less tired would certainly be a better life. I need to go to bed earlier. I get doing things — applying for jobs — and get a second wind. I think my body gives up on getting sleep.

Like when I've been working till 8pm and my body's just figured it isn't going to get dinner (we usually eat around 5.30pm) and has stopped being hungry so that when I do get my dinner at 8.30, 9 o'clock-ish, I'm no longer hungry. Body just gives up and gets on without sleep and food.

Which is very nice of it in the short term, but less healthy in the long.

Anyway. I'm rambling. I'm going to have a shower and go to bed.


Monday, 23 February 2009

Yet another method of achieving my goals

Weekly goals! Monthly goals take too long; I leave them all to the last minute. Weekly goals give me a short period of time to work on things in.

I know, I try so many ways of reaching my goals. But at least I don't give up. (Plus, I usually do reach my goals.)

Dan and I have been painting his house lately, which I've been really enjoying. I love the feeling of accomplishment, especially when it's working towards something worthwhile (fixing up a house and getting it potentially ready to rent out). Dan's been working a lot on fixing up the kitchen, but that's something I can't really help with, apart from giving Aahs and Oohs of encouragement when Dan tells me about it.

But painting, I can do. We've already done the roof, the front door and the side windowsills; now within the last couple of weeks we've painted the front windowsills and the side wall, and waterblasted the front wall in preparation for painting. The only problem, of course, is the weather! It isn't really summer any more, and the weather forecast predicts fine days... for Wednesday, Thursday and Friday. Saturday? Rain. Sunday? Rain.

Still, it's exciting to get further ahead and see our progress. I'm going to start to try completing a 101 goal every week or so, too.

While reading about five books a week (to accomplish that goal) and finishing two NaNoWriMo novels to submit to CreateSpace, one of which will probably end up at about 150,000 words.

Ye gods.

But hey, if it wasn't hard, I wouldn't be pushing myself, would I?

Tuesday, 3 February 2009

Back to the 101 list

I'm back into it! The overly-high goal setting, the dismal failures... here I come. I'm feeling quite positive, though: no more studies!

Although, from next week, I'll be having walks with Dan thrice a week, a 7km walk with Kylie once a week, trying to take a couple of night school courses twice a week, possibly volunteering on a committee board, writing This week in history and occasional reviews and feature articles for Chaff again, and trying to squeeze in one "date" night with Dan every week. Plus, y'know, actually hanging out with friends once a while might be nice. Or calling my family. Y'know.

Maybe this is a bit more of an ask than I thought.

Plus, I still need to read 51 BBC Top 100 books, and 135 of my own unread books, which means an average of a book every two days. Which sounds busy to begin with, until you consider that these books include ones like War and Peace, Anna Karenina, and The Lord of the Rings....

And with all of the above going on, I'm still somehow meant to revise two of my novels, submit one to be published, and go overseas on holiday. As well as learning to swim, cook, sew and knit....

See, boys and girls, this is why you don't leave things to the last minute.

Sunday, 1 February 2009

The memory-keeper's daughter (Kim Edwards)

I liked that this book never made me cry, never made me want to cry, especially since the last book I read was The time traveler's wife.

One thing I enjoyed about this book was the entire absence of gratuitous sex scenes. Sex scenes just get old, and they're often not really relevant; in The time traveler's wife there were so many sex scenes, all over the place, I got entirely sick of the whole thing.

But The memory-keeper's daughter was a good book, which kept me reading and wanting to find out what happened next. It was too long — I got pretty annoyed because, as in so many sitcoms, the only real tension was miscommunication, which could have been solved so easily by one quick sentence: "By the way, our daughter never died — she had Down syndrome and I gave her to our nurse who's raising her as her own daughter." Okay, maybe not an easy sentence to say; but a book where the main tension revolves around one easily-resolved lie gets pretty frustrating.

The storyline of the nurse and Phoebe (the girl with Down syndrome) was much more interesting, and I wished the author had gone into it a bit more. Phoebe was born in the late 1960s in the States, a time when Down syndrome children were called "mongoloid"; were excluded from public schools and thought better off dead. The nurse had to fight to get Phoebe a place in the schools; it's a fight I wish the author had delved more into, since it was a historical fight, something that really happened.

I have very limited experience of Down syndrome children myself, but I hadn't realised how capable they can be. I guess there's still a lot of prejudice against them, and of course ignorance breeds prejudice.

According to wikipedia, about 92% of pregnancies in the States, where Down syndrome is discovered, are terminated. That's an awful statistic.

An interesting read, and one that interested me more in the development and discussion of Down syndrome, the potential capabilities and the historical attitude against Down's children, than in the plot itself. But I did enjoy the plot, even if the characters were all a little angsty for my taste; not precisely a light-hearted read, but a thought-provoking one, and thankfully not a tear-jerker.