Sep 252017

Yesterday was another day of not getting much done. By now it’s getting old.

We went voting in the morning, when it was still pretty empty, we had spaghetti with homemade pesto for lunch, I played some more Subnautica (and got frustrated), made a little music, did 15 minutes of strength training, and that was basically it.

The highlight was that I managed to make hand and lip balm. I had run out of both back in June so I had to buy some at the store, and yesterday I finally got around to pulling out the ingredients, melting them in a pot and pouring them into jars. Making both took all of thirty minutes, I have no idea why I didn’t do it earlier. But then this was only my second time ever. Things that you don’t do often always feel more overwhelming.

The election results were decidedly meh. It will be interesting to see where German politics go after this.

So. New week, new attempt to get a grip on my life – business as usual.

Today I will be doing a ton of teaching, will go for a run (no skipping today), and do everything on my to do list. The list isn’t that long, so that should be doable.

Sep 242017

As expected I was pretty lazy yesterday which was good. I spent half an hour typing corrections into my novel, skipped my run because I was feeling queasy and sleep-deprived, helped making shrimp risotto, and then did something I haven’t done in ages, I sat down at the computer to play an actual video game.

The boy is all into video games, in fact that is all he does in his spare time. Well, that and watch youtube videos. When he isn’t allowed screen time he reads. There is way more screen time than anything else in his life, something I’m not too happy with it but he’ll turn 15 soon, and since he is doing his homework and chores with minimal nagging I let him.

I had been wanting to play some video games again for ages now because I did use to enjoy it. I also used to get so obsessed with certain games that I’d do nothing but play for weeks on end, not getting enough sleep and spending all my free time in front of the computer but I don’t think that will happen again soon, my life is just too packed for that. Also I have become a little better at not doing things that make me feel rotten.

The boy recommended Subnautica to me, and I have to say so far I really like it. Since I’m so out of practice I stumble around, fumble with the controls, and gave up playing in survival mode after two tries.

I’m not sure if I’m patient enough to spend hours and hours on this but so far I’m enjoying it.

I only have to make sure that I don’t start out my day playing it. Better to do the things I want to move forward on first and use the game as a reward later.

Yesterday was also the day my husband decided to cut the first part of the hedge, and so I spent the late afternoon sweeping hedge clippings into piles. It was one of those rare days where the whole family was helping to get that task done, and it was somewhat nice. Unfortunately he is having tennis elbow, and so the rest of the hedge will have to wait. I might have to learn how to cut the hedge. Which will be an excellent upper body workout.

Today is the day we go and vote. Which is super important this year.

I always go because this is one of the few things I can do to influence where my country is going, but this time we’re hoping to not have too many racist idiots elected so it is even more important than usual.

We used to spend the night of election day in front of TV waiting for results to come in but I doubt I’ll do that today. I’ll probably just check the web tomorrow morning.

Sep 232017

So yesterday was as much a whirlwind of a day as expected. I did get everything done, though, which was very good.

That meeting of selfpublishers was pretty interesting, and I managed to avoid the Oktoberfest crowds when heading back home by going after midnight which was not the smartest move on my part. This weekend will be sluggish and unproductive as a result.

At that meeting there were only five of us, each one doing pretty different kinds of books. I was the only one who hadn’t anything published yet (also my business card was the most unprofessional by far). Still I found that the others’ goals were slightly different from mine. It seems that for most German authors the big goal is to get their books into physical book shops. And two of the non-fiction authors in the group are indeed selling stacks of books to distributors out of their basements.

Of course they were all talking about services and distributors that I had never heard of because I’m thinking about the English-speaking market and online sales, and when I mentioned smashwords, createspace and draft2digital they looked at me funny in turn.

They also told me to translate my books into German, and I am thinking about it but I’ll see how they are doing in English first, before putting more time into them. They also suggested crowdfunding to raise the funds I need for proper covers and editing. Unfortunately I don’t think that will work.

But then what do I know.

We talked for ages, and there is a lot I will have to think about. As usual when I’m meeting people.

I was really hoping to make a lot of progress on the novel today but with the lack of sleep I don’t know if that will happen. It is also the annual hedge-cutting time, always a slight crisis, and something that needs the whole family to pull together.

I want to go for a run, and then I’ll guess I’ll spend most of the day slothing in front of the computer.

I never know if the benefits of going out and meeting people really outweigh the lost day or two afterwards. I guess I’ll have to decided that on a case to case basis.

It always feels a little cold and calculating, this „Do I get enough out of this to make it worth my time?“ kind of thinking but then time is the one thing you can’t really get more of. Not that I am striving for a life where not a single moment is wasted but spending a whole evening in town is a rather big investment of time, especially when you count the impact that has on the hours before where I need to get everything done before heading out which includes things I’d usually do at night, and a day or two afterwards where I will be pretty unproductive with less-than-usual impulse control.

Still, that meeting was interesting enough to be worth it this time.

And after two weeks full with beginning of the school year panic, traveling over the weekend, re-scheduling lots of students, and then going out meeting new people in a place I’ve never been I am really looking forward to a slow and semi-lazy weekend.

Sep 222017

Yesterday was a rather busy day again. I tried to work on the novel in the morning after breakfast but my husband was up extra early. Then I ran all the errands, and got all the food.

I also found that my bank does not change British pounds into Euros. I’m not quite sure what to do about the 15 pounds I still have lying around. Maybe put them in a drawer and wait until the next time I’ll need them. Since the last time I visited the UK before this summer was 1989 that might mean I’ll be 78 until then but then one can’t really extrapolate a trend from only two data points.

Before all of that I found that there was something weird going on with my daily posts from the last few days. Day 6 had the wrong date, and day 9 wasn’t showing up. I tried fixing it but every time I fixed one of the two posts the other one would go wonky. In the end I refreshed everything in the blogging software I’m using on my laptop, and then the post for day 6 was gone.

I’m not quite sure what happened but it must have something to do with the fact that I’m using two different pieces of software for blogging, one on my iPad, and the other one on my laptop. And maybe I took one of the posts as a template for the other, and then the blog thought those two were one post only, and so I lost a post. Of course that one was the one with all the nifty links and everything about the German Raveler Meeting in it.

I will write it again as well as I can but not today because today I’m swamped.

I also found that I didn’t get a message when there was a comment on the blog so I didn’t see a couple of comments, and therefore didn’t reply to them. Sorry.

I will clean everything, teach loads of students, and then I’ll rush into the city for my very first meeting of the „Selfpublisher-Verband“. I will mend my purple dress so I can wear it, and apply makeup, and I’m feeling all professional now because I managed to print business cards even.


And yes, I am fully aware that real, printed business cards would be much more professional, and a website that’s not a free wordpress blog, and a book funnel-link to the actual books I published. But one step at a time.

I am pretty excited about the meeting, and a little scared. I’m also not happy about the fact that I will have to go to Munich during Okotberfest. That’s something we usually avoid. It means being on trains that are packed with loud, drunk people who might lose it at any time, or get in your face for not being drunk and loud.

I’m planning to walk for twenty minutes from Marienplatz to the venue so that I won’t have to change trains at the main station which is really close to the Oktoberfest location but there is no avoiding the whole thing completely. Unless I bike but that would be a little too far for the time I have.

And the whole family is elated that my husband finally found what is wrong with the guitar amp he was trying to repair for a student. He’s been working on it in mounting frustration for weeks now, and had promised the student to have it ready today but couldn’t find what was making that horrible noise. Until last night. If I weren’t going out tonight we’d probably have champagne to celebrate that achievement.

And now I’ll start my day of go, go, go.

Sep 212017

The good thing is that the laptop straightened itself out eventually, no story, though. But those computer problems meant that I didn’t manage to work on the novel yesterday morning, and there really was no time in the afternoon because I did quite a bit of teaching, and so the novel did not happen. Again. I’m hoping to make up for it today – stay tuned.

Turned out that running with sore muscles from unfamiliar bodyweight exercises is no fun. I stumbled through my run and walked much more than I wanted. Part of me feels like a failure for it but the rational part of me knows that I can’t expect myself to power through everything. I’ll see how running goes on Saturday.

Today is my big errand day, I’ll zoom all around town getting groceries. The weather is gorgeous and supposed to be rather warm so I should maybe bike to the next town over to go to the really nice health food store where I can get all kinds of things that aren’t available here in town. But then that depends on how much time I’ll have.

I also want to go to the post office. Very exciting, this life of mine.

One thing that is out of the ordinary is the meeting of the „Selfpublisher Verband“ tomorrow. I am already a little nervous. I don’t really know what to expect. I’m thinking about printing some business cards for author-me but I’m not sure. I only have this website that I haven’t updated in ages (and it does look like I slapped it together in an afternoon because that’s exactly what I did), and a funny email address. On the other hand you never know.

I will have to head out immediately after finishing a long teaching day tomorrow, that will be fun.

I’ll keep you posted.

Sep 202017

So yesterday was the day that all that traveling around and not sleeping enough caught up with me. For once I had gotten enough sleep, and as a result I was all tired all day.


I still got quite a few things done but after four pm or so I was just a yawning mess.


I was still pretty pleased with how much I got done on the novel, and we had a spectacular Greek lunch. The best was our homemade babaganoush from the eggplants my husband grows in our yard.


The most fun thing was that the boy and I tried some new bodyweight exercises. Because of the boy's new school schedule we have had to move our exercise days around, and so we ended up with strength training on Tuesdays when I'm teaching extra late in the evening. None of us wanted to do forty minutes of strength training at a time that would usually be after dinner so I decided to just try a quick workout from the bodyweight app that we use.


We ended up doing tabatas which are apparently sets of four different exercises, each done for twenty seconds followed by ten seconds of rest. At first we misunderstood the instructions so we ended up doing squats for several minutes in a row.


It was pretty hard to do but it was also fun to shake things up a bit. And we only did twenty minutes so it was really doable. Today I'm having sore legs and abs which will be fun for my run later.


Despite the late dinnertime I did manage to go to bed on time, and so I'm hoping for a little more energy today. And there will be more of the usual.


I love having a routine but it doesn't make for a good story.


But then I'm typing this on my iPad because my laptop is acting up. I really hope it's nothing but maybe that will become a story to tell.


Sep 192017

There isn’t much to talk about yesterday. I did everything on my list, and went to bed early. Which makes it a really good day.

I went running for 65 minutes with very little walking in between, I think I’m getting better. I’m still pretty slow but that’s getting better as well. We had beets from our own garden for lunch, and then I taught some very nice students, I made a little music, worked a little on my novel, and went to bed early.

I’m still pretty exhausted from all the travel but right now I feel like I will have my energy back some day.

And I’m hoping today will be more of the same.

Sep 182017

And I’m back home, and very glad about it. The weekend away was great but I like being home best. Now I can make music again, and wrestle the novel some more, and be with my favorite people in the world.

The trip back home went very well, this time they even had food on the train. Delicious food even. And then there was even more delicious food for dinner at home.

I’m thinking I should eat a little less from now on because – as I might have mentioned – I ate so much in the past few weeks that I gained about ten pounds back. Now I have two options, either I give up, shrug my shoulders and lament because I just can’t keep my weight down, or I eat less than I need until I’m back where I feel best. And then, maybe, I will manage to only eat as much as I need so that I don’t have to have all this drama again. We’ll see.

I also found that I will have to flip my exercise schedule around. I do strength training together with my son, and he has PE on Wednesday now which means Wednesday is a really bad day for him to do strength training on top of that. Which means I will probably go running Monday, Wednesday, Saturday, and do strength training Tuesday, Thursday, and Sunday. Which then moves my grocery shopping day to Thursday which is good. The only really inconvenient thing is that Tuesday is the only day in the week that I work until 7, and when we do 40 minutes of strength training after that it will mean dinner will be really, really late. We’ll get used to it, I hope.

Last night I decided to rewatch „Firefly“. I really love this show. I’m looking forward to it with much anticipation even though I’ve already seen it at least twice.

I still haven’t figured out how to fit everything I want to do into my days but then I don’t need to get that all done today, it’s an ongoing process anyways.

Daily blogging seems to suit me well, by the way, I found myself thinking how much I like it just before starting to write. Who would have thought.

Sep 162017
Gestrickt habe ich:
  • fuschiafarbene Lauriel: fertig gestrickt, Enden vernäht, muss noch Knöpfe annähen
  • Easy: weitergestricktIMG_0825
  • Stripeys: fertigIMG_0822
  • Caerwent aus dem zweiten Strang Wolle, den ich London gekauft habe: erster Socken bis zur Ferse gestricktIMG_0826

Gehäkelt habe ich:

  • Sophie’s Universe weiter:

Erwähnt wurde:

  • meine Patreon-Seite
  • das 9. German Raveller Meeting
  • Kurs „Mittelalterlich Spinnen“
  • Cal Newport: Deep Work (Amazon-Affiliate-Link)
  • das Trenchcoat-Muster „Robson Coat“ von sewaholic
  • das T-Shirt, auf das ich nicht gekommen bin, war „Boogie“ von Cecilia Hanselmann
  • Und dann habe ich es auch noch geschafft, meine E-Mail- und Blogadresse falsch anzugeben. Ups.
Sep 162017

So yesterday I got up even earlier than usual and left for Bielefeld. I love going by train. I could spend all morning reading and knitting and looking out the window.

The only thing I didn't like is that the restaurant car on the train didn't have real, hot food. Due to a technical difficulty with their cooling they only served sandwiches and chocolate bars.

Now this has been the fifth time in a row or so that there was either no food or only very little food on a train I've been on so I might revert back to taking all my own food from now on. I don't know what changed, everything else is excellent, the trains are mostly on time, the conductors and everyone are nice and polite, and tells you what's up, and the trains are mostly clean.

Then I found my hotel which is fine, and right next to the train station but not noisy. And then I started walking. First to my old Gymnasium, then to the castle on the hill where I used to spend days and days looking out over the city and daydreaming, then I walked all the way back to where we used to live, to my old elementary school, and then all the way back.

It is a little weird, things haven't changed as much as I thought they would. Almost every house I passed was the exact same as in 1982 apart from a coat of paint. And where once was a big field of wheat there are now houses and houses. Which look like they are decades old too.

This part of Germany is rather different from the one I live in now. Where I live, close to Munich, construction is booming. There are loads of jobs in Munich, and not enough housing, so the town I live in is constantly changing. Everywhere I look an old family home gets torn down and a much bigger house with several appartments, or several houses will appear in its place.

That's not what happens here in Bielefeld. There is construction, and newness but where I used to live looks almost frozen in time.

I'm very happy to be here. This still feels a little like home but I'll also be very happy to go back home where I live now. I love it there, and the life I made for myself.

And today is ravelry meeting time! I get to meet some of the people in person that I only know through the computer, and I'll be taking a spinning class that I'm looking forward to, and I will look at all.the.yarn and all.the.fiber.

I can't wait.