Saturday, June 30, 2012


I went on a hiking trip with the YMCA  today and it was amazing! It was wonderful to get out of the city and get to see some of the wonderful scenery.

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Book review: American Wife and Crash

American Wife

From google
I started off really enjoying this book. It jumped around a bit and it was a bit difficult at times, but overall  it was good. My main complaint was that it ended very abruptly and didn't really explain what I thought was the central point of the story. Anyway, overall I'd give it 7/10. (Sorry for the not so thorough review, I don't want to give away the ending!)

From google

This was a really weird book that I did not really enjoy. It was meant to be about a commentary on technology in today's society, which sounds good in theory. It ended up being really sexual, in what I thought was a bit of a creepy way. The book was basically about a guy who gets off from car accidents. It was an interesting idea and an interesting way to talk about technology in society, but not really my cup of tea! Anyway, overall I'd give it about 2/10.

Monday, June 25, 2012

Gym plans

I went to spinning class today, which was a lot of fun! I'm still working on my technique, so I don't think I'm getting the most out of it yet. The teacher recommended a different bike, which has finer gradations, and will hopefully let me work out more effectively.

Anyway, onto the goals:
1. Meet heart rate monitor fitness goals every week - done
2. Run 5K in 27 minutes - didn't make much progress on it this last week, but I did run 1.7 miles (2.7 km)
3. 20 consecutive good form push ups - my goal is to do two more push ups every week and I met my goal for this week (7 push ups)
4. Lose the tummy! (I feel like I should have some goal measurements) - down 1 inch at my waist (down to 29 inches), no change on the chubby part!
5. Lose 10 lbs (get down to 127lbs. This ones a bit difficult as I don't have a scale in Seattle) - not sure, but I do feel slimmer!

My tentative exercise plan for this week:

Monday: Spinning
Tuesday: Gym - cross trainer and weights
Wednesday: Rest
Thursday: Gym - cross trainer and weights or Spinning
Friday: Gym - cross trainer, weights, running
Saturday: Hike with the YMCA
Sunday: Gym - cross trainer and weights

Fingers crossed it all goes well!

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Busy weekend

Sorry for not blogging earlier. My weekdays are all a little same-y, so perhaps not so interesting to read about?

Friday was an interesting and fun day - I'm still really enjoying it and I think I'm getting a lot out of it. I'm having a lot of fun interacting with clients and I'm learning a lot. I'm already starting to feel more confident, which was one of my goals for this summer. I'm also getting some relevant legal experience - I'm getting lots of time interacting with clients and interviewing them to determine their exact legal problem, I've gone to court and I've been able to write letters to clients.

I also listened to a meditation podcast before bed, which was great and very relaxing - I've done it every night since and really enjoyed it.

Saturday was super busy. I got my hair cut early first thing in the morning. It hadn't had it cut in forever, so it was good to finally get it done! I found out that the posture supporter I ordered was being returned to the sender because my name wasn't on the mailbox. Urgh! I ended up having to walk to the post office (45 mins away) to pick it up, but I guess on the bright side it didn't actually get returned! Anyway, I'll be doing a review on it after I've had it for a bit longer!

I also got a library card (finally!) and borrowed a tonne of books (all from my short term goals list).

New library card and the first batch of books I borrowed!

In the afternoon I went for a walk around Greenlake with one of my housemates. The lake was beautiful and I'm definitely going to spend more time there! We also saw the cutest the cutest ducklings!
The lake is beautiful!

Pear tree on the walk to the lake

Pretty flowers!

Pretty flowers again!


So cute!!

In the evening I drunk too much...not a good life choice. And...I actually didn't enjoy it that much. I wonder if I'm getting too old for it!

I had a bit of a rough start to the day (a bit of a headache), but I did finally get motivated and go out to the Pride Parade, which was fun! It was the first Pride Parade I've been to and it was an interesting experience! There was a lot more nudity than I thought there'd be. One thing that I "liked" was seeing all the different shapes and sizes and how comfortable people were with their bodies.

I also got a peach mango candle on my way back -  other people in my house smoke, and I've been looking for something to cover up the smell.


Anyway off to bed now. I'm tired and next week is going to be a busy one!

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Slooooow typing!

I've noticed that as soon as one thing in my "regime" gets off, everything goes to pot. For example, on days when I don't go to the gym I also eat way more junk. Anyway, unfortunately the last two days have been a bit like that. Today was much better though, and I got a good workout in!

I've also taken the plunge and switched my work and home computers to Dvorak. At the moment its pretty annoying (I'm typing SO slowly), but I've realised that this "cold turkey" approach is the only way I'm going to get good at Dvorak.

Dvorak keyboard...its meant to be hugely more efficient than the traditional QWERTY keyboard

Anyway, I've been really tired recently so I want to get an early night tonight, but I promise a proper post tomorrow!

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

A super busy day

I had an incredibly busy day.

I woke up early (for me) and scrambled to catch a bus about half an hour earlier than my normal one. Unfortunately, I screwed up on the buses, and ended up waiting at the wrong stop for one the first one, the second one was delayed, I then missed my stop and walked the wrong direction. Urgh. Silly me! Anyway, I ended up being almost half an hour late to court. It wasn't the end of the world though, because we didn't end up actually representing the client until almost midday. Anyway, it was an interesting case and I enjoyed being in court and learning a little more about that.

The busyness continued over lunch, as I had a lunch with one of the people that funds my internship. It was a pretty interesting lunch, but also a bit tiring.

My afternoon was fairly busy as well - after missing the morning because of court there was a fair amount to do. On a side note, I've realised that one of the absolute best things for me to do at my internship is to shadow my attorney. He's very open to me shadowing him, and because of the way the organization is set up he's the one that handles most of the interesting things that go on.

After work I had my first electrolysis appointment. It actually went quite well, and I'm hoping that I'll get some positive results from it soonish. My next appointment is next week.

Anyway, I didn't end up getting back to my apartment until 7:30 ish. I had a quick dinner:

Tilapia with plum sauce (from chinatown!) with extra ginger over
bok choi

Anyway, off to bed for me now!

Monday, June 18, 2012


Just a short post because I'm going to court tomorrow to watch a hearing! (Unfortunately that means I have to wake up at 7:15, half an hour earlier than normal).

Anyway, I went to my first ever spinning class today and it was a lot of fun! It was also a lot of work (and my rear is a bit bruised!), but it was definitely something I'd do again (and am planning to do again next Monday). It took me a bit of time to get used to the bikes, as they're quite different from a normal stationary bike at the gym or a mountain bike (which is what I'm used to riding outside).

It took me a bit of time to get used to the bike and the settings on it (and I still don't think I've fully got to grips with the settings. I found the sitting to standing transitions and vice versa particularly challenging, because what would seem easy when I was standing would be almost impossible when I was sitting.

I ended up burning about 700 calories (according to my HRM), which is pretty darn good for me in an hour (it's about the same amount I'd burn working on the cross trainer for an hour).

I'm already looking forward to my next class!

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Relaxing Sunday

Today was a pretty good day. I woke up pretty early because I went to bed early the night before. I skyped with my parents this morning, which was nice. I then headed out to the gym. I went on the cross trainer for 30 minutes and then did a full weights session. I hadn't done weights for a while, so it was nice to do a session.

After that I headed out to the international district. I had a few snafus with the buses (I missed one because I was late and then missed another one because I was on the wrong side of the road. Urgh. Anyway, I eventually made it to the international district. It turns out that the international district was more like chinatown.

A bad photo of the entrance to Chinatown, and the plaza I
ate lunch in
Chinatown was fun, but it was basically a series of chinese food shops. I bought a bunch of things there, but it wasn't as fun as some of the other Chinatowns I've been to.

Anyway, I bought a bunch of things (despite trying to cut down on buying food!), but there were things that I can't get near where I'm living or that I was looking for anyway and they were super cheap.

The food I got today! Yum!

I ended spending a little over $20...
Rice green tea - $2.50
Seaweed - $3.99
Three sets of mochi (an asian sweet) - $1.19 each. 
Jasmine green tea - $3.99
Lemons - 4 for $1
Plum sauce - $2.50
Gingko green tea - $2.50 
Garlic - $1
Bok choi - $1.50
Lemongrass - $1 
Ginger was 32 cents (yay!).

Anyway, I was pretty pleased with all that!

I ate lunch in a little square near the bus station (I didn't get there till 2, so I was super hungry). I had my usual salad with chicken.


I was a bit hungry when I got back from my adventures in Chinatown, so I had a snack:

Greek yoghurt with banana (which will hopefully help to stop
any more calf cramps!), honey, flax and licorice

For dinner I had tofu in tomato sauce with peas and seaweed over bok choi. It was pretty good (which is a good thing as I made so much that I'll be having it for dinner tomorrow as well!

Dinner: tofu in tomato sauce with peas and seaweed all over
bok choi

I have a bit of a busy week next week. I have an appointment on Tuesday, a lunch meeting on Wednesday and possibly a meeting with my landlord on Thursday (to officially sign the lease).

I'll let you know how it all goes!

PS I realised that the "program" currently set up on my heart rate monitor is the one that requires the least amount of time, I'm going to change that for next week.

What are you looking forward to next week?

Saturday, June 16, 2012


Last night I did something silly: I stayed up until 5am. For no reason. The boyfriend found out yesterday that he may not be able to get a work visa for the US this year (they only give out a certain number), and so I was a little stressed/keyed up about that.

Anyway, because of that I ended up waking up around midday. I had a quick breakfast and then skyped with the boyfriend for an hour, which was wonderful! I then headed out to the gym. The overall gym trip was 2+ hours. I went on the elliptical for 45 minutes, ran 1.6 miles and then tried the foam roller on my calf, which was still hurting from the cramp :(. It's feeling better now though.

I also came up with a list of fitness goals for the summer:

1. Meet heart rate monitor fitness goals every week
2. Run 5K in 27 minutes
3. 20 consecutive good form push ups
4. Lose the tummy! (I feel like I should have some goal measurements)
5. Lose 10 lbs (get down to 127lbs. This ones a bit difficult as I don't have a scale in Seattle)

After the gym I just chilled and read my book (it's called "American Wife" and so far I'm really enjoying it!).
Image from google
Dinner was reheated chili, which was good.


Anyway, tomorrow I'm going to wake up early (probably, as I'll be asleep before 10!), skype with my parents and then head into downtown Seattle. I'm planning to explore the International District, which should be fun! So...hopefully my post tomorrow should be a bit more interesting!

The conference...

was great. I learned a lot and met some really nice people. It was also interesting to learn a bit more about the other legal aid organizations in Washington.

My eats today were pretty boring...

For breakfast - porridge as usual.

For lunch - a sandwich from somewhere called Potbellies. It was actually super good (although I'm sure super unhealthy).

For dinner -

Chicken parmesan with spinach

Just a quick post because I'm super tired and it's late!

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Yesterday and Today

The job is still going well. It's challenging, but in all the right ways. I still need to find ways to keep myself amused when I don't have other things I need to do. One of the best things about it that I think it's going to great things for my confidence. It's nerve-wracking to talk to some of these people on the phone (I'm never very good on the phone and a lot of these people are under significant stress). Anyway, onto the outfits from the last two days:

My outfit from yesterday. This
is such a comfy outfit :D
My outfit from today. Sorry for the
bad, blurry photo - it was taken
with my phone
And the eats:

On a related note, I was so bummed that I forgot to take pics for what could have been my first WIAW...will have to remember next week!

I had porridge for both breakfasts, which was really good. The idea of making the porridge in advance is definitely growing on me!

I had a spinach salad with tofu, almonds, dried cherries and raspberry walnut vinaigrette. 

For dinner yesterday I had tilapia and spinach and corn:

For dinner today I had pasta with butter and cheese. I know. Ridiculous. It was good though, really good. To be honest, I've had a bit of a lazy day. I didn't end up going to the gym tonight and I took a long nap. I didn't end up getting a picture of it (it was a pretty boring meal anyway).

I don't have a scale here, which is unfortunate. I'd really like one to keep me motivated. I did buy a tape measure yesterday though, and took some (super) quick measurements this morning. My waist was 30" and the widest part of my tummy is 33". Anyway, we'll see what happens over the rest of the summer.

Tomorrow I'm going to a conference in Seattle for legal interns working for non-profits. I'm looking forward to it - it should be an interesting day! I imagine I'll learn a bit more about the field in general and it will also no doubt help to further my goal of taking full advantage of my time here.

On a few unrelated notes:
I woke up in the middle of the night last night with the most painful cramp in my right calf (a charley horse). I'm not sure what happened to cause it, but it certainly wasn't fun. Last time I woke up with one this major was my freshman year of college and it hurt so much that I woke up swearing. I get them with some degree of frequency, but they're not normally this bad. Anyway, my leg is still aching a bit. I've tried stretching it, but it's still not back to normal. Anyway, does anyone have any suggestions for stopping them?

For some reason my cuticles and fingers are a bit ragged. I've been soaking them in salt water, which really seems to help a lot.

On the postcard/letter front I've done well. I sent a few more off today and yesterday:

Lots of letters and postcards

Anyway, thats all for me!

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Book Reviews: Getting Things Done and The Name of the Rose

I promised a review of these books a while ago, and never got around to writing it. Anyway, here it is!

Image from google
Getting Things Done by David Allen

This is one of the most famous organization books I've come across, and it was on my list of organization-type books to read. Anyway, it was interesting, but I didn't enjoy it as much as I thought I would. The basic gist of it is that you should make extensive to-do lists with everything you need to do and include the very next action for each thing. Then, you need to review the lists regularly (daily). I thought it was an interesting idea and definitely had some potential. One of my big issues is not putting down everything on my to-do lists and not reviewing them regularly, so that I keep thinking of things I need to do and wasting brain power on them. However, in my attempts to use this system I've come up against two problems. Firstly, it takes me forever to set up the to-do lists and I can imagine that I'd find it difficult (though not impossible if I set up a system) to maintain them. Secondly, I find that things in my life change so quickly that it's hard to keep my to-do lists up-to-date.

Anyway, I am going to try to use some of the ideas, I just need to find ways to alter them to fit my needs better.

The Name of the Rose by Umberto Eco

Image from google (apparently this copy
which is signed by the author and is in
good condition is worth $1,300! I guess
I should've been more careful with the copy
I got from the library!!

A long and strange book, but one I'm very glad I read. This is a fiction book set in an ancient (1327) Italian Monastery. It's a murder mystery, and I always enjoy those. It was translated from Italian, so I found that the text sometimes seemed a bit stilted. Additionally, I found it a bit hard to track who everyone was! There were a lot of very similar names it in. The author frequently digressed onto commentary about religious/political events at the time. They were interesting, but sometimes a bit boring and hard to follow. Anyway, I would recommend it, but be aware that it's a bit of a long haul!

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Super tired!

I am super tired so this should be a short post.

I went to bed a bit late last night, and was then woken up by my housemates being loud at 2am (quite why they were being loud at 2am on a Monday is past me). Given that they've all been living together for 6 months or so, I'm trying not to be too interfering with what they get up to, but I was a bit tired today!

So, onto a quick recap of my day:

Overall work was very fun. There were a few times when I wasn't really doing anything, and I suspect that that might be a somewhat regular occurrence, so I'll have to find something productive to do during those times. Today I wore:

Not my  favourite outfit
(I prefer skirts to trousers),
but decent I thought!
After work I headed to the gym (YMCA) near where I live. I officially joined as a member! (Yay!). It was $58 for 2 months (which is the whole time I'm here), which I thought was pretty reasonable. I'm going to make it a goal to go at least 29 times so that each trip costs less than $2! So...1 down, 28 to go :D

After that I picked up a few bits and pieces for dinner (seriously, I'm not buying any more food now. I think that part of the problem was that I wasn't planning ahead, so for e.g. I didn't have anything defrosted for dinner. To combat that I'm going to plan more. On that note I'm having tilapia for dinner tomorrow!).

And then...I cooked. Chili. It was pretty good and I made loooooads of it, so hopefully that'll be something easy to pull out of the freezer to reheat if I get into the not having anything defrosted issue again.

Seriously a lot of chili!

So, onto the eats:

I did not get my oatmeal for breakfast because I didn't have time :(.
No wonder I got so hungry at 11am!
My lunch salad. I didn't have any more chicken for it, so I used
tofu instead, which was great. I'm going to use tofu again tomorrow
(assuming I get up in time to cook it in the morning, not ideal, I know!)
Dinner was (obviously) chili. Even though I'm making an
effort to eat better, I'm never going to eat chili without lots of sour
cream and cheese. It's my favourite food, so...

So, that's all from me!

If you cook for yourself, do you make big batches of things and then freeze them? Or cook from scratch every night?

Monday, June 11, 2012

First Day of work...

was brilliant! 

Everyone in the office is lovely. It's a very small office (unfortunately they've had their funding cut recently, so they've had to let one of the lawyers go). I'm not sure if I've fully explained what they do. Essentially, they help very (very) low income people who are in the process of being evicted or having other serious landlord-tenant issues. One of the things I'm really excited about is that with evictions things move very quickly (unfortunately for the people involved), but that means that I should be able to see a few cases from start to finish.

There are two main lawyers and a bunch of law students. One of the lawyers (Mark) works as a mediator with people involved in landlord-tenant disputes (for example, today there was an issue with a landlord getting angry at a tenant who'd broken an appliance and the tenant needed more time to come up with the money to fix it). The other lawyer (John) is who I'm going to be working under. He works with people who are actually being evicted and often goes to court on their behalf. He seems like a fantastic, very open boss. He also seemed like a brilliant teacher, and spent a lot of time going over the basics of eviction law with me today.

I didn't actually do all that much today, other than reading over some of the basics of housing law in Washington. I also sat in on two "walk in" meetings - clients who turned up and asked for help. Those were pretty interesting.

Anyway, I'm sure you'll be hearing a lot more about my work in due course!

Today I wore:

I really love this skirt! My room is very messy, but I do like the
outfit! :D

On a goal related note I posted five letters today :D (most of them long overdue!)

My letters! (and postcard)

For breakfast, I had the same thing I've been having every day, but with honey instead of molasses. It was much better today than yesterday and I also was much faster at making it today which was good (I guess I needed practice reheating oatmeal?!)

For lunch I had my same salad! (I really like it! I ran out of cooked chicken though, so I'll have to have something different tomorrow.) I got to eat outside in a beautiful courtyard (in the building I work in).

Lunch (with my very cool lunch box!)
For dinner I had tofu with tomato sauce and peas. Very yummy! I (of course) had it over spinach (I've run out of spinach again! I'll have to get more tomorrow!)

Dinner! (Sorry for the blurry photo)

Sunday, June 10, 2012

More food!

Today was a very laid back day. I ended up not doing much, in part because I got to bed so late last night.

I woke up at about 9:30 ish, made breakfast and then headed to the gym. For breakfast I reheated some of my oatmeal from yesterday. It was...okay. The oatmeal itself was perfectly fine and delicious, but I didn't feel like it saved much time. It took about 30 minutes to prepare it from scratch and maybe 15 mins to reheat it. It was pretty gelatinous and lumpy when I took it out of the fridge, so I had to add extra milk to get it to soften up. I then had to repeatedly "smush" it against the edge of the pan to get it to de-lump. Anyway, I'm going to continue to make it that way I think, but it wasn't as time saving as I was hoping. I didn't get a picture of it because I was too hungry!!

I then went to the gym for about 90 minutes which was fantastic. I spent 30 minutes on the cross trainer, which was great (and I worked really hard on it! I burned 352 calories, which I was really pleased with!). I then did a weights session, followed by a one mile run. It was a pretty tough workout, but I felt great after.

After the workout I went and bought more food. Seriously, I keep buying more food and it needs to stop! I've spent so much money on food recently. Today I bought a lot of fish (enough salmon for 4 meals and 3 pieces of tilapia) as well as a bag of cherries and an onion! (A random combination of things I know.)

For lunch I had the same salad as I had yesterday! (So I didn't take a picture!).

After lunch I chilled and had a nap and read my book. So, all in all a very relaxed Sunday!

For dinner I cooked up one of my pieces of salmon with some garlic and lots of spinach (I've eaten so much spinach recently!). I tried poaching the salmon, which was fine, but not great. (On a slightly unrelated note, while looking up how to poach salmon I found the following: "You can also poach salmon in your dishwasher if all else fails. Just be sure foil is sealed properly. It will take about 50 minutes on a regular wash and dry cycle.". Haha!!)

Dinner! It was pretty good.
Tomorrow's my first day at work. I'm looking forward to it, but I'm also very nervous. Fingers crossed it'll go well! I'll let you know how it goes :)

Saturday, June 9, 2012

I've had a long day... this is just going to be a quick post.


Making steel cut oats! Apparently they're really good reheated
so I made a tonne of them!

Breakfast!  I had steel cut oats, protein powder, ground flax,
and molasses
Lunch! This was super yummy and consisted of spinach,
almonds, chicken cooked in toasted sesame oil, and raspberry
walnut vinaigrette

Dinner: This was rather disappointing to be honest. It was
sweet and sour tofu (the sauce was not very good though)
with broccoli (which tasted off) over spinach (which was

What I got up to:
This morning I walked to downtown Seattle from where I'm living. It was a 90 minute walk on roads that were decent but quite busy.

I saw this random cool water plane on my walk!

Once I got there I took a bus tour around the city which was pretty good. It was one of those hop-on hop-off types. I rode it all the way around once and then part way round a second time. The second time I got off at the Sculpture Park and also Pike Market, which was fun. I visited what I thought was the first ever Starbucks, but it turned out that I got the wrong one!

The famous space needle

One of my favourite sculptures at the sculpture park -  it's
an eye sculpture that doubles as a seat!

I was surprised by how much water there was in Seattle. It seemed
like I could see water wherever I was in the city!

Random pretty shore picture

The sign for the original Starbucks (not the one I went to!!)

I also got an ORCA card (bus pass), which should make traveling into work on Monday a little easier!

I've also started setting up two trips which I'm excited about. I've decided that I want to really make the most of my time in Seattle. I feel like sometimes I don't fully seize the day and take full advantage of things on offer. As I mentioned I've never been to the West Coast before, and I'm not sure when I'll next be over here, so I want to take advantage of as many things here as possible. The first trip is to Portland, Oregon on July 21-22. I've booked a hostel(!) for the night I'm there and I can get the greyhound bus there for $28. I'm trying to keep the trip as inexpensive as possible because I'm trying to save up a bit for law school and I'm not getting paid much for my internship (we'll see, maybe I'll freak out and cancel my plans). The second trip is to Vancouver in British Columbia. I'm hoping that my boyfriend will be able to come with me and it can be like a vacation for the two of us! He's not sure if he can make it yet, so fingers crossed that that also works out!

Anyway, bed time for me!