Thursday 13: On my mind

To sum up life lately: “Time is that elusive quality of nature which keeps events from happening all at once. Lately, it doesn’t seem to be working.” –Douglas Adams

For this Thursday 13, I’m giving you the short list of things that are on my mind lately, that if time wasn’t feeling all compressed and crazy, I’d actually write about. (Stay tuned!)

On my mind…

1. The dissertation due date. Did you know that an advisor-approved copy of my dissertation is due to my committee in five weeks, plus or minus a couple days? Although I’m kicking ass and taking names in the writing department (I swear!), the thought is more than a wee bit daunting.

2. Head, shoulders, knees and toes. For some reason, the new year always gets me thinking about health. I’ve been percolating about a few health related posts to follow up on this “Communication Strategies for Dealing with Doctors” essay. Any topic suggestions?

3. Fitness class friends. To reference the most over-used Gandhi quote, I am being the change I want to see the world. In the fitness realm anyway. By that I mean, I’m trying to change the exercise class culture at my gym by being (overly) friendly, welcoming, inclusive, etc. We shall see!


4. Illness etiquette. The other day I was sitting in Starbucks enjoying a magically productive hour of writing when in walks a man with a deep, rattling cough. You know, the kind that makes people look up from their computer screens and gaze in hypochondria-induced horror? (Oh, is that just me?) In any case, I’ve been pondering the preponderance of horrifying public manners on the cold and flu front. The long and short: Cover your (damn) cough. Wash your hands. And for heavens sake do not hack up a lung around other people. If you’re sick, stay home! And I mean that double time for students, cubicle dwellers and air travelers where close quarters spread infection. Ahem.

5. Jobs, jobs, jobs. You know, the ones I don’t have? When I’m not fretting about the five weeks, I’m obsessing over my seriously stilted academic job hunt. Although I am still hopeful, it’s tough not to be discouraged.

After making the lemon loaf last week, I couldn’t help but think I could
do it better. So I doubled the lemon extract, added the zest of two large
lemons, and stirred in two tablespoons nonfat Greek yogurt. The result?
The most lemony, moist cake that ever was. Truly. And P.S. thanks to my
rad macro lens, I did not have to edit this picture in photoshop!

6. Lemon Loaf. If you do nothing this weekend, make this lemon loaf. It’s a Starbucks knock-off recipe and with my adjustments, it’s damn well the best lemon pastry on the planet. Do note that by calling it a “loaf” instead of a “cake,” you don’t have to feel guilty for eating it at breakfast time. Mmmhmm.

7. Five weeks. Did you read #1? Five freaking weeks!  

8. Working on defense. Closely related to #1, I’m slated to defend the Big D at the end of March, just eight short weeks away! Cactus Land friends, do feel free to drop by on the 28th if you’d like to hear about all things airport security.

9. Celebrations. Every day, I think of items to add to this list of ways I will celebrate the dissertation defense. Can you tell I’m a bit fixated?

A snap from our glorious mother-daughter trip to Disneyland last year.

10. Disneyland. Speaking of, my celebration trip to Disneyland commences in 68 days!

11. Meal planning. A few weeks ago, Emily commented on my “Cooking Tips and Tricks” post and suggested a feature about meal planning. As soon as this dissertation is done, I’m going to apply my research skills to that topic with fingers crossed that I can implement some of the suggestions myself.

12. Braces be gone. The end of my braceface journey is coming near. I’ve got about six weeks left, knock on wood.

13. Graduation! Words cannot express how much I am looking forward to May 8!


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