Tag Archives: Wednesday Weekly Blogging Challenge

Wednesday Weekly Blogging Challenge: What I Eat in the Average Day

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I know this week’s prompt is asking about our average eating habits, but mine shift throughout the month. I’ll begin with what’s typical during the colder months of the year when I don’t have a migraine.

As I mentioned in the morning routine prompt last November, I normally have almond milk and oatmeal with fruit, nut butter, and chia seeds for breakfast.

Close-up of penne noodles evenly covered in a marinara sauce and sitting in a white bowl. There are two sprigs of basil sitting on top of the pasta. Lunch is my biggest meal of the day. It’s common for me to eat dishes like pasta, rice and beans with various seasonings and vegetables added in, stir-fry of various sorts, tacos, fajitas, or chilli.  I batch cook a couple of days a week, so these are often leftovers from previous meals.  During heat waves, I switch to cold options like sandwiches, hummus and pita, large salads that include a source of protein, etc.

Typical dinner foods include options like smoothies, baked beans, big plates of raw and/or cooked vegetables, fruit, some leftover meat or other high-protein foods, eggs prepared in various ways, or other light and healthy meals. This remains pretty consistent throughout the year. I can get heartburn if I eat spicy food or too close to bedtime, so I try to eat just enough of something mild (ish)  to keep me full until morning.

We do order takeout occasionally as well, but I try to cook at home as much as possible.

Sounds pretty healthy, right?

If I’m at any point in the migraine cycle, things change. Strong cravings, generally for sugar and salt,  are one of the early signs that I’m going to have a migraine within the next few days, and it’s really hard for me to resist junk food on those days.

The closer I get to needing to take my migraine medication, the more painful it is for me to chew hard foods like, say, carrot sticks or apple slices. If you’ve ever had a toothache, it’s similar to that but in multiple teeth on one half of my face.

I experience nausea that makes my body finicky about the texture, smell, and taste of the food that it will allow to remain in my stomach. My sensitivity to noise as the migraine looms closer also makes it impossible for me to use something like a blender then.

So my diet shrinks down to soft foods that have mild scents and do not require noisy preparations until my medication kicks in and I’ve slept off the worst of the rest of it. Sometimes we’ll order in pizza on those nights instead of me trying to cook something.

I will often roast some sweet potatoes and hard boil some eggs a day or two in advance to give myself some healthy options, and I’m always on the lookout for other dairy-free foods to add to my rotation when I can’t chow down on raw, crunchy stuff.

Luckily, I’ve been able to reduce my number of migraines by figuring out my triggers for them,  avoiding triggers as much as I possibly can, and following a strict sleep and meal schedule. I can’t avoid every migraine, though, and so that’s how they influence my diet.

Wednesday Weekly Blogging Challenge: Something I’m Proud of Doing

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This week’s prompt was a little tricky for me because I’ve been feeling down in the dumps lately. January isn’t my favourite month of the year, and this one seems to really be dragging on.

I don’t know about all of you, but sometimes my brain likes to focus on the things I wish I’d done differently instead taking note of what I think I’ve done well in life so far. I will take this as a challenge to congratulate myself on how far I’ve come, though!

A white person’s hand and forearm has punched through a yellow wall and is reaching out for help with all five fingers extended. When someone needs help, I’m the sort of person who will leap to the occasion. That’s a positive character trait in many situations, but sometimes it can be taken too far if you don’t also look after your own needs or if the person who wants help doesn’t respect boundaries.

In the past few years, I’ve noticed that it’s slowly become easier for me to realize what my limits are and stop before I’ve been pushed past them.

As a hypothetical example, I can be available to do A or B for someone on the first Tuesday of the month from 7 to 8 pm but not be able to do anything outside of that time frame and never agree to do C, D, or E for them.

It’s a huge win, especially when the occasional person demands I give them all of the letters of the alphabet on any given day and hour of the week and I still stand firm in how much time and energy I actually have for them.

Not only that, but my guilt about saying no is decreasing, too, and I can now more easily end my availability to do A or B temporarily (or even permanently) for people who try to push past my limits one too many times.

 

 

Wednesday Weekly Blogging Challenge: New Things I’ve Tried Recently

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I usually try new things more often during the warm months of the year when it’s easier to travel and there are fewer germs floating around that my household needs to avoid, but I have tried some cool stuff this winter. (No, this isn’t an ad. I don’t do paid or sponsored posts of any sort. These are simply things I’ve tried recently and liked).

Duolingo Math.

Logo for the Duolingo app. The logo consists of the word “Duolingo” written in a plain, bright green font against a white background. There is nothing else to be seen in this image. I was an average math student in school, but I didn’t find it particularly interesting or relevant to my life most of the time. It seemed like something that a few students were naturally good at while the rest of us slogged through it.

When this was released at the end of December, it piqued my interest. Maybe I’d have a different opinion on this subject now that there are no quizzes, exams, or grades to worry about?

Well, it turns out that I’m really enjoying it so far. Turning math into a game makes it practical, fun, and low pressure.

The lessons run the gamut from easy to challenging. There is a section for elementary students as well as a different one for older kids or adults who want to improve their mental math skills, so this is one of those free games that truly does have something for everyone.

 

Station Eleven Novel and Miniseries

Book cover for “Station Eleven” by Emily St. John Mandel. Image on the cover shows four tents that have been erected outside in a field. It is night outside and the cloudless sky is glowing with stars. Each tent has a bright light inside of it as well. The tents are surrounded by a waist-high fence that appears to be made out of hay bales piled on top of each other. I’d heard so many good things about ”Station Eleven” by Emily St. John Mandel, so I finally started watching it this winter.

It follows several of the same characters at different points in their lives as they encounter a deadly form of the flu that kills most of humanity and then about 20-30 years later to see how the survivors have fared.

If you’re comfortable reading about fictional pandemics, this is such an interesting look at how quickly the definition of normal can change. The people who were born after that pandemic had unique and sometimes humorous takes on what life must have been like back when unbelievable luxuries like airplanes, dentists, air conditioning, and the Internet still existed.

Unlike many books in this genre, this one is filled with characters who are kind and decent folks (with rare exceptions). They’re traumatized in the beginning, of course, but the storyline mostly focuses on them doing good things like adopting orphans, preserving as much of the past as they can, and simply surviving in a world where you must grow, knit, build, or scrounge around for everything you need.

I liked the hopeful approach this took to a genre that often assumes the worst about humanity.

The miniseries has been good so far as well. There were some major changes made to certain portions of it in order to help the storyline flow better on screen, but it remains true to the themes and characters of the book. Honestly, that’s exactly what any adaptation ought to do. I don’t need every single line of dialogue to remain identical so long as it still feels like the original.

 

Wednesday Weekly Blogging Challenge: What I Think of New Year’s Resolutions

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Seven paper airplanes are flying over a dark grey surface. The first six are white and flying in straight perpendicular lines. You can see white lines shooting out behind them. The seventh is read and flying in a zig-zag line with a white zig-zag line trailing behind it. I believe New Year’s Resolutions, as well as goal setting activities in general, are a fabulous starting point.

In my experience, longterm change is most likely to happen when you set a goal, make incremental changes that guide you closer to it, and then gradually build on them over time instead of trying to fix all of your habits at once.

For example, an hour of vigorous exercise will be extremely difficult at best for someone who hasn’t exercised in years. They might be so sore or injured the next day they will be scared off from trying again.

A 10 minute walk every day (or every other day, or what have you) is a much easier goal to accomplish for someone in that position, and it can be gradually increased or replaced with more strenuous workouts as you grow stronger and figure out what other types of exercise you actually enjoy doing.

So I like the idea of New Year’s Resolutions, but I think it’s better to keep your expectations reasonable when you’re trying to change something about yourself. Many incredible things are possible in life, but they rarely if ever  happen overnight.

I also believe in celebrating effort and partial success. If you didn’t reach your goal but you did make progress towards it and built up healthy habits along the way, that’s still counts as a win in my opinion.

 

 

Wednesday Weekly Blogging Challenge: My Goals for 2023

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This is one of my favourite annual prompts for the Wednesday Weekly Blogging Challenge.

Two stick figures are standing on a line that’s supposed to represent a hill. One character is walking down the hill towards a white portion of the page where there is a sign that has “2022” written on it. The other character is looking up towards a sign that says “2023” and walking up the hill on the yellow portion of the image. Out of my goals for 2022, I succeeded at practicing Spanish every single day and finding a better treatment regiment for my migraines.

I made a few new online friends but none in person due to trying to avoid Covid germs.

I lost a small amount of weight and spent a decent amount of time outside even if I didn’t do all of the hiking and nature walks I hoped for. (My health made it hard to exercise and eat the way I hoped to some days or even weeks, but my fingers are crossed that this year will be easier now that I’m having fewer migraines and know more about my triggers for them).

Meditation was a total bust for me last year.

So I’m going to recycle a few of these goals for 2023.

I would like to:

 

  • Spend more time socializing with people in person as safe opportunities for that arise.  Hopefully, this will lead to a new friendship or two, but meeting new folks in general would be fabulous as well.

 

  • Meditate for five minutes every day.

 

  • Try a new restaurant or type of food every month. I don’t go out to eat much in general, but I tend to visit the same spots every time when I do eat food I haven’t made. It’s time to give my tastebuds a workout.

 

  • Develop a conversational understanding of Spanish. This past year of studying it has taught me to recognize a lot of common words and even understand the gist of some sentences or brief conversations, but I don’t yet know enough to have a full, long, or detailed conversation in it. Maybe 2023 will be the year I take the leap into speaking and understanding it in real time without having to look up so many words?

 

  • Join a walking or hiking club, maybe? This would tie into some of my 2022 goals about spending more time hiking and going on nature walks as well as my current goal of meeting new likeminded people.

 

  • Improve my graphic design and SEO skills. I know my local library offers free courses on those topics, so I’ll probably start there.

 

Let’s see how it goes.