Still sick.

Welp. Still sick today, but slowly starting to feel better. I’ve decided what happened was on Friday, I started coming down with a cold. Saturday I was so miserable because of allergies, being in a different place around people I only see once a year. And today I’m starting to feel better because the allergies are gone and only the cold is left to get over.

I mean, my throat still hurts and I still have occasionally nausea, but my nose has been significantly less runny today – which is a good sign. I’m hoping by tomorrow, some of this pressure in my head will have resigned and I’ll be feeling mostly normal again. Or at least normal enough that I can get off the couch.

I’ve skipped stretching twice now because I’ve felt so crappy from this sickness. Just the thought of sitting on the floor moving around sounds absolutely miserable and nauseating to me right now. I mean, it’s not all bad. It probably hasn’t hurt to give my muscles a rest, I was starting to develop some soreness in my upper hamstrings and taking a break will probably help that. I just hate sitting around doing even less than I normally do. I need to get back stretching. I need to be doing something.

Especially because, I’ve noticed tonight, my breathing feels a little labored, like I have crap in my lungs – and sitting around doing nothing won’t help that.

Today is the first day since coming home I have not had a cigarette. I figured I might as well quit for the remaining 6 days I’m home because my cigarettes I have are too old and gross tasting to risk getting caught smoking. I’m basically weened off the nicotine already so it’s really no big deal.

But yeah, I go back to Columbus on January 5. I’m so happy because I’m tired of being home. I’m ready to be around my friends and get back to school and work and all of that. I’m just so epically bored here. Only one more week at home and then I’m gone. I’m so very relieved.

But yeah. That’s all I really have to say tonight. All I did today was sleep and watch tv so I don’t really have anything interesting to report. And I feel exhausted from being sick so I’m gonna call it a night.

Good night.

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An Inside Look into a Smoker’s Brain

Well I feel like absolute crap tonight. Last night I started coming down with what I thought was a smoker’s cold. Sometimes when you quit smoking (or in my case, reduce smoking so much you might as well quit) you develop these cold-like symptoms that are a by-product of your body clearing out all the crap in your respiratory system. Well, I thought I was coming down with that last night, but today, I just feel yucky. I’ve got a runny nose and a stopped up head/headache along with a sore throat and nausea from all the drainage I’ve been having.

I wouldn’t be surprised if part of my symptoms are related to a smoker’s cold, but I feel like it’s something else as well. Either I’ve got a touch of a real cold or I’ve just been suddenly hit with a bout of winter allergies. I think it might be allergies because I’ve been sneezing a ton, and I don’t ever recall having a cold that makes me sneeze this much.

Well, because of this lovely whatever I’ve come done with, I’ve been thinking a lot about my smoking and whether I should put quitting down as one of my new year’s resolutions. I don’t know. I feel really conflicted about it.

On the one hand, I’ve been getting really pumped about going back to Columbus so I can start going to the gym and getting in shape. I really want to be healthy this upcoming year. And I know getting healthy would be a whole lot easier if I quit smoking. But the addict in me is throwing up a major protest. It’s not so much the physical withdrawal symptoms I’m worried about, those are easy to beat. I’ve done it before. It’s the psychological addiction that’s so hard for me to beat.

If you’re not a smoker, it’s probably a little difficult for you to comprehend the strength of this addiction. Why can’t you just quit?? Why is it so hard psychologically to quit?? Those are silly nonsmoker questions. To a nonsmoker, the problem seems easy, just quit. It’s the best decision with the best outcome. But it just doesn’t work like that.

I don’t know. Part of it is because I haven’t hit “rock bottom” yet. That may sound a little confusing in regards to smoking. Smoking generally won’t destroy your life the way a “serious” drug addiction will. But I’ve found, in my own experience and watching others, whenever someone is abusing a substance or is addicted to something, they will never have the proper motivation to quit until they hit “rock bottom,” that is when the hate of the addiction finally overcomes the love.

I’m pretty sure any addict will tell you their addiction is a love/hate relationship. And it really is; it is for me as well. I mean, I love smoking. I love the taste of tobacco, I love the way it makes me feel, I even love the smell. But I also hate it too. I hate the way I can’t sit through a movie without needing a cigarette, I hate having to go out in the cold and rain to smoke, I hate how it makes me out of breath. But right now, I haven’t hit my rock bottom. I still love smoking more than I hate it. The things that I hate about smoking are still seen in my brain as more minor inconveniences than reasons to quit. It’s definitely a battle.

So I don’t know what I’ll do. I’ll tell you right now, the smoking will probably win. Even if I just try to ignore the problem and the ultimate decision, I’ve still made a decision. And that’s probably what will happen. I want to be healthy but I want to smoke more. I’m an addict with an addictive personality. If I give up smoking, I’ll probably just fill the void with something else.

I did consider the option of trying to cut back, since I know I don’t really want to quit completely. But the problem is, I already feel like I don’t smoke that much. This past semester, I think I smoked 5-6 cigarettes a day, maybe 7 if I was super stressed. I look at that compared to the “stereotypical smoker” who smokes a half a pack or more a day, and I think I’m doing okay. I realize this is probably just a way to rationalize my addiction with myself, but I still think the thought has merit.

And you know, I did read some studies that said exercise can mitigate some of the risks smoking creates, even if it doesn’t completely negate smoking’s harmful effects.

Can I go off on a tangent here for a second and risk sounding really stupid??
I wonder about the supposed risks of smoking. I’m not an idiot, I know smoking’s bad for you. But I oftentimes wonder if the dangers are hyped up a lot?? I mean, tobacco has been used for thousands of years. That doesn’t mean it’s good for you, but still. I’ve read some opinion pieces that show smoking may not be quite as bad as “they” say it is.

I looked at one study that supposedly showed how smoking negatively effected a person’s ability to exercise. They had the people in the study smoke 3 cigarettes an hour for 5 hours before making them do some cardio!! And then said that smoking negatively affected exercises ability. Well, duh. You nonsmokers out there realize that they made these participants smoke 15 cigarettes, 3/4 of a pack, in less than a normal work’s day. That’s not really “stereotypical” smoking nor is it a good indication of how light to moderate smoking impacts exercise. In a period of 5 hours, I smoke 1-2 cigarettes, and that’s a big difference from 15.

I don’t know if you’re seeing my argument here. Just that maybe everything we’ve been reading is hyped up or based on experiments like the one I mentioned above that only account for extremely heavy smoking. I’ve found when I’ve looked into the subject, not many studies have been done on light to moderate smokers like me.

Don’t get me wrong. I know smoking is still bad for you. But it makes you wonder you know?? You can’t always believe everything you read.

Call me crazy. Call me stupid. Call me an addict. Call me whatever. That’s just what I think. Maybe it’s just rationalization or maybe there’s a kernel of truth there. If you’re curious and want to read a slightly more informed essay on the topic, this guy’s website has a really good essay. I don’t know, google it sometime.

But that’s my rant/thinking out loud for tonight. I’ll probably have a cup of hot tea before I go to bed to try and soothe my throat a little bit. Ugh and I have to get up early tomorrow to go to church and play my oboe in the orchestra. Ugh.

Sorry if you we’re expecting a synopsis of my family gathering today. There wasn’t much to report and I found this subject to be more interesting.

Good night my lovely readers.

Musings about Bohemian Style

Alright. I did nothing today except go to the grocery store. And spent a couple of hours looking at clothes on amazon.

I have such a conflicting fashion sense you know??
I dress in business attire and/or church appropriate clothing for class, because I feel self conscious if I don’t look professional. Yet, there’s like an inner hippy inside of me that longs to wear oversized ponchos and baggy clothing.

I don’t know. I spent most of my time on amazon today looking at variations of harem pants (I’m slightly obsessed) and things labeled “bohemian”. It’s not that I have a problem with that style, that I think it looks bad or anything, it’s just radically different from what I normally wear and I don’t know if I would be comfortable in it.

I mean, my current wardrobe makes a few subtle references to that which is “bohemian”. My tunic shirt and my current pair of harem pants are covered in paisleys. I’m also slowly adding long dresses to my wardrobe as well.

Literally, ever since about 9th grade, I have had a fascination and love for bohemian style. I’ve just never felt comfortable pulling it off. I’ve never felt I had the personality or the right body type to pull it off. I always imagine “bohemian” being wore by a waif thin girl with no curves, a girl who is a giant “eco-freak”, maybe someone who smokes too much weed. I don’t really fit that stereotype. My entire life has consisted of tight, fitted clothes. Baggy or loose clothing has never been acceptable.

I did go through a period where I wore a lot of loose fitting shirts, but in the last couple of years I have moved away from that towards very tight clothes. I don’t know. Perhaps it is time for my style to go through another evolution??

I guess the biggest problem with dressing bohemian, I hate the color brown. And that’s the main color I think of when I think of “bohemian”. I have slowed started to incorporate a few brown pieces into my wardrobe; you know, a pair of brown sandals and brown heels, a brown belt, all dictated by necessity. I really hate the color brown though. I could never have an all brown wardrobe. Can bohemian be done in black I wonder??

I don’t know. This is a very random topic. I’m just thinking out loud I suppose. As much as my self-confidence has improved over the years and I have learned to wear what I want regardless of what other people think, there are still things that cause me to hesitate. And it’s the cheapskate in me too. I’d rather spend money on a tested and true clothing item I know I will wear, rather than something “risky” that may just hang in my closet.

Of course, no one says your wardrobe has to be cohesive. I could dress fancy one day and bohemian the next, but I just like to try and look similar throughout each day. I don’t like extreme fluctuations in outfits. I feel like it makes me look flaky or something. I don’t know. I’m sure most people don’t pay that much attention to this sort of stuff, especially in college where the only people you’re likely to see everyday are your closest friends.

Ah well. These are just musings. I’ll probably waste the rest of my phone battery looking at clothes on amazon, dreaming about being hippy chic. Haha.

Tomorrow is our annual get together with my dad’s side of the family. That should be interesting at least. It’ll give me something to write about tomorrow I suppose. Hopefully all goes well and the cake I helped my mom make tonight tastes good.

Good night.

I can’t wait!!

So today’s big excitement consisted of going through everything we pulled out the attic for my future apartment and deciding what I actually wanted and what I didn’t.

I’m feeling a little less…annoyed about having to use handmedowns after seeing what all we have. I’ll have a (mostly) complete set of dishes and silverware. So that solved the matching problem. I decided it’s really not so much unmatched rooms that bother me, but unmatched sets. Like I might would have to throw a little fit if I had a hodge-podge of unmatched dishes or whatever, but I won’t so it’s okay.

But the dishes I’ll have, they’ve grown on me, and I actually really like them. They have a light green border with real gold trim. They originally belonged to my grandmother. I’ve decided I can match my towels and stuff to the green in the plates. That matching, coupled with the nice, light green color will create a harmonious kitchen, I think.

Well anyways, I was browsing around on amazon today (that’s what I do when I’m bored) and I came across these really pretty (and cheap!) elephant statues that might make good decorations for my apartment. And then I was struck by inspiration! What if I had an Indian/oriental theme to my apartment??

I don’t know. I already have my Buddha statue. And we’ve got this carving made out of cork of an Asian garden scene that I’ll probably take with me. It wouldn’t be too hard, would it??

I don’t know. I can’t really plan anything what with not actually knowing what apartment I’ll wind up leasing and what the floor plan looks like. Plus, decorations will be the last thing on my list to worry about financially. But it’s an idea.

I just don’t know how well Indian and oriental will mesh in terms of style. I mean, I think of India and I think of bright, garish colors and Hinduism. When I think of “oriental”, I think of minimalism, understated colors, and Buddhism. Those styles are kind of the opposite of each other.

Ideally, I’d just like to create a space that focuses on and emphasizes my Buddha and the eventual shrine I plan to create for it. I won’t have a TV in my apartment, so I’d like my Buddha to take the place of the focal point that the TV would normal occupy. I just want to create an atmosphere that is such, when I walk into it, my mind immediately becomes peaceful and thinks of Buddhism. My own little spiritual sanctuary.

I briefly browsed through some feng shui books on amazon; going with the theme of harmony and peace, I thought feng shui might help me design my living space in an appropriate manner. But after about a 5 minute search on google for information, I decided feng shui was too complicated. And honestly, when you get into serious feng shui, it’s all numerology and stuff I don’t really believe in. I can create a harmonious living space on my own, thank you very much, without the help of feng shui.

But I really am excited about having my own apartment. I can’t wait until all the logistic stuff is over with and I can just focus on making it my own. Granted, decorations and stuff may have to wait for a little while, as I save up the money for them. It’s a little…inconvenient to realize all the spending money I’m making now with my job, which I’d normally spend on frivolous things like decorations, will be eaten up paying for rent. Oh well. It will just make my decorations that much more meaningful – because I might have to save for a long time to get them.

Ah but I’m excited!! I hope my excitement isn’t just naïveté clouding over any difficulties. I don’t know. My parents have been worrying so much about this, I worry they might know something I don’t!! Haha (they know a lot that I don’t). But I’d like to believe they are the worry warts and everything will go fine and smooth. My fingers are still crossed with hope and anticipation!!

I shall fall asleep tonight dreaming of all the wonderful things my apartment could be.
Good night y’all!!

The iPhone 5 & Hissing Cockroaches

So today was spent getting my new iPhone set up and running. I’m blogging from it now!! :) We got my phone number transferred over along with my contacts, on top of all my apps and stuff, and I got a new case.

Let me tell you, the iPhone 5 is fast. Like, super fast. Waaay faster than the iPhone 4. I can’t even believe it. I’m still amazed and a little giddy about the fastness. And I have 4G. ^_^ Maybe other people don’t think that’s so cool, but I do. Super fastness!!

It’s a little disorienting because the iPhone 5’s screen holds 20 apps, where the 4 only held 16. So all my apps are moved around and it’s a little confusing. I keep wanting to look in the wrong place for stuff. Oh well. I’ll get used to it. Haha.

I went to Lowe’s tonight and I was really sad I couldn’t bring home any plants. They had diffenbachias for $3!! (Diffenbachias are on my “plant wish list”). But I guess on my wish list is where they will stay because I don’t have the room or the money really to adopt another plant right now (plus you can’t easily fly a plant on an airplane). One can dream though…

I also went to Kohl’s so my mom could return the bracelet she bought me for Christmas. It’s not that I didn’t like the bracelet, I just probably wouldn’t wear it. I hardly wear jewelry anymore, plus she’d gotten me a bracelet very similar to it before.

I feel so bad returning gifts. I feel like it makes me ungrateful. But my mom said she would rather return the gift and get her money back than for me to keep it and it never get used. That’s true I guess, but I still feel like I’m being ungrateful. I suppose I just shouldn’t think about it too much. It’s over and done with anyways.

I’ve also been thinking about pets. I’d really like to have some kind of living animal in my apartment next year. I’m not really sure if my plan will work, because the real estate company of the apartment I really want to rent has a “strict no pets” policy. But see, I don’t know if that strict no pets policy applies to things in cages, specifically insects.

I’ve wanted a tarantula forever, but after looking online, I decided the initial start-up cost and feeding cost was too high, even though care requirements are low. I also thought fish might be an option, but the initial costs and care requirements are too high. So I’ve come up with the perfect solution!! Madagascar hissing cockroaches!!

Okay, so I have a love for bugs. And in my entomology class this past semester, our professor taught us about hissing cockroaches and how easy they are to care for – which inspired me. Plus, I think they’re kind of cool. They make noise and are easy to handle as well. Feeding and care is minimum. You just feed them dry dog or cat food with some occasional compostable scraps (aka garbage) and you’re good to go!! They’re low mess and they only live for about 3 years, so they’re low commitment. They’re perfect!! Plus they’d be a great conversation starter. ;)

Like I said, this is all dependent upon whether cockroaches count as “pets” and if they’re allowed in my apartment. Even if they weren’t allowed, I could still probably get away with keeping them but still. It’s nice to have permission.

I don’t know. I just think they would be a cool, low cost, low maintenance pet. Perfect for a poor college student!! I just really want to have something to take care of other than plants. I love my plants dearly, but they don’t move or make noise or any of that. Hissing cockroaches do and they’re just plain cool!!

But yeah. That’s my grand idea. I think it’s a good idea personally, but we’ll see if it actually works out in execution.

I don’t really have much else to talk about. My day has been pretty bland. Tomorrow promises to be even blander than today because I have absolutely nothing planned. Oh well. That’s Christmas break for ya. Pretty boring, at least in my case.

Good night y’all.

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