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Tag Archives: Work

DC Parting Shots, Again!

This is going to be one of those self-absorbed posts wherein I talk about what I did and not about what I’ve made. Week before last, TC’s mentor asked him to come to DC to work on his house, and TC insisted that I accompany him. We both worked, a lot. While I pulled days in the office with significant overtime, TC put his mentor’s house back together (not a small exaggeration there).

 

Before we left, we saw these two kitties in a dusty window on Main Street.

trip to DC | Gothic Granola 

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Caelum Non Animum | Quinoa Apple Muffins

Reposting this blog has brought much reflection. 2011 was my first taste of freedom as an intern in DC. 2012 I sought to recapture that freedom, but such things cannot be duplicated. 2013 was divided into nine months in the Working Class University of Life and School of Hard Knocks followed by Gothic Charm School. 2014 got off to a rocky start, but now we’re in the Rockies. Caelum non animum mutant qui trans mare currunt I invalidated in this instance as TC and I worked at improving our outlooks on life before the move, with great success.


Another recipe without many pictures, so there are cat pictures instead!

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Thursday Reflections | Class, Work, and Exercise

Researchers recently presented findings from analyzing the 2005-2006 U.S. National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey in San Francisco at the American Sociological Association. They found that college-educated workers moved more on weekends while workers with a high school diploma or less moved more during the week. The study lead author, Jarron Saint Onge, an assistant professor of sociology at the University of Kansas, pointed out why this is so: “work-related activity [for less-educated, working-class people] tends to be low intensity and typically involves repetitive motions that can have harmful health effects.” 
Woo, HIIT!

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The Glorification of Busy | Double Chocolate Cake

Thesis: The so-called glorification of busy in 21st-century, first world business stems from an unconscious cultural reverence of saints and mystics, and martyrs, to a lesser extent.

Bias: I studied martyrs, mystics, and saints in college and see their characteristics everywhere: self-sacrificing, obsessive, whole-soul commitment to a cause that extends (sometimes) beyond their personal aims.






Many of the workers in this article, under the front of “I’m a hard worker,” acknowledge (more like, make a guilty-sounding admission) that they feel overwhelmed at their jobs because of long hours, constant connectivity, and never truly having time off.  There’s an awareness of how one functions best at work. 

Corporate wellness programs, my specialty, hinge on that awareness. People are only going to participate in their company’s wellness program if they believe they can benefit, if they believe the program can help them solve their problems, and improve their quality of life, in and out of the workplace. Articles such as these can nudge that seed of awareness to sprout, and a wellness program tends the plant. Work in general can cause the seed to die or be choked by mangy weeds if one lets one’s stressors grow untended or loses sight of how one works.

While writing my junior paper at Princeton, I developed an awareness of my exact periods of productivity. While in school, I could generally schedule my life around when I was most able to write and do schoolwork. Of course, in the corporate and retail worlds, shit don’t work that way when you’re entry-level. The awareness became a little painful as I make more mistakes after 15:00 when my focus for the day is shot, few exceptions. 

Linda Kavelin Popov’s A Pace of Grace confirmed my ideas that my energy and focus during an 8-hour workday is going to fluctuate. For the sake of the self and of others, the most self-caring act one can do is to respect those fluctuations; otherwise, face the energy disorder consequences. I know when to do non-intense work and when I have the energy to focus hard. This awareness makes me a far more productive employee, as long as I have control over when I do most of my tasks, than if I tried to write reports after 15:00 and file in the morning–not gonna happen.




Time management cake: Whole Foods Market’s double chocolate cake. There is nothing double chocolate about the original; a piddling amount of cocoa and chocolate does not mean double chocolate! I remade it with my coconut butter-cacao nibs chocolate substitute, and it turned out a little dry and not so chocolatey. This would not meet mom-needs-chocolate standards. It can be made entirely in the blender, if you so choose. It’s “whole wheaty,” despite being gluten-free, and it would be a good proteinaceous breakfast or dessert with almond butter.


Faux Double Chocolate Cake
Modified and mocked from Whole Foods Market

3 ounces coconut butter
1/4 cup cacao nibs
1 1/4 cup nondairy milk (I used unsweetened almond)
1/3 cup raisin vodka (or applesauce; I was cleaning out the fridge)
2/3 cup pitted dates
2 teaspoons espresso powder/ coffee
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla

1 1/2 cups GF oat flour (for the love of Peter Murphy, people, for the last time, OATS ARE NOT GLUTEN-FREE UNLESS THEY ARE GF CERTIFIED!! They are cross-contaminated with wheat due to processing standards in the US unless otherwise marked.)
1/2 teaspoon xanthan gum
1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Grease a 8-inch square baking dish and set aside.

In a blender or food processor, combine the coconut butter, cacao nibs, dates, nondairy milk, vodka, coffee, and vanilla. Blitz until smooth.

Ina large bowl, sift together the dry ingredients. Add the wet to the dry and mix well (watch for dry spots). Transfer to the prepared pan and tap the sides of the pan to make it settle. Bake for 30-35 minutes or until it passes the toothpick test.



Parting Shots:
Why no applesauce in the chocolate cake? It all went into applesauce bread. #freezercleaning



TC is right: no matter where we go, whatever I order looks the same, with varying degrees of freshness. Tofu, veggies, and rice, this time at Rice Paper in New Eden plaza in Virginia.



Chinese takeout from somewhere near College Park, MD.



Except when TC makes it: grilled tofu, sauteed peppers and onions, served over black rice, with grilled pineapple skewers.




Whippy eats things. Like other people’s keys.



April’s Challenge Exercises. I have been doing monthly challenges for a year and this was the one with which I began last year.



I have bangs again, thanks to TC.



#throwbackthursday/#flashbackfriday to 2004 when I had bangs.




Combichrist concert last night…too many mediocre opening bands wore us out before the main act at 23:00.



Happy Third Anniversary to Gothic Granola, formerly Screwfoot Q!
Come to the Dark Side…we have vegan and gluten-free goodies.

Zombie Soup

Most days, I ride my bike to work. After a few months, I figured out something…
Rules for wearing a skirt (of any length) while riding a bike:
1) Don’t.
2) Bring safety pins–both to pin up a long skirt before and to fix the inevitable rips afterwards.
3) Lose sense of shame.
4) Wear cute undies because you will flash people.
5) See Rule #1.
Especially because of the cold, I’ve given up on skirts for a while.

 

Soup! Because it’s cold outside. There’s probably 1,001 variations on some vegan, gluten-free, roasted butternut squash curried soup because it is brainlessly easy to prepare. Even a zombie could make it.

 Zombie Soup | gothic granola

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Beeting the System

 
I came home from work. I made soup. I ate it. I was calm.
 

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Luddite or Ludic? Tahini Granola

If you have known and corresponded with me for any length of time, at some point you will receive a picture of a written page instead of a typed message. In the case of my dear friend KJC, I sent her fourteen-page letters composed over several days and Metro rides last fall, pretty much every week. Writing is more efficient for me than typing, though I type faster than I write. Not all efficiency is speed, however. Writing with pen and paper satisfies me physically, spiritually, mentally, and emotionally more than typing (though there of course are times where my graphomania requires digital paper and ink, and much of it). Nay, while I may seem to undergo Luddite fits in which I shun technology, generally I am amenable to the shiny devices (phone, compy, iPad, iPod, camera) and the connectivity they provide. I just make them work for me.tahini granola notebook page vegan gluten-free | gothic granola

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