Groundhog Day

Along with the phrase, "doing twice as much and only getting half as much done," I have heard the words "groundhog day" a lot in the last six months. If you have not seen the movie, which features Bill Murray, it basically is about a man who repeats the same day over and over. Much like most of us have been doing for the last six months! I was making my coffee the other day and it hit me hard for some reason and I thought it would be fun (or extremely boring) to go over what a normal groundhog day entails these days. 

I may not be quite as groundhoggy as some, as I have been going into the office since day one, but I still do get that "every day is the same" feeling! Here's what a day in the life looks like. 

3:30 am (yes, you read that right): get up

3:30 am - 3:50 am: bathroom break, brush teeth, make coffee and breakfast, eat, get lunch ready

3:50 am - 4:30 am: study

4:30 am - 4:40 am: work on journal (this is something I have been doing each morning for 10 minutes)

4:40 am - 4:50 am: read blogs or work on blog (another 10 minute/day goal)

4:50 am - 5:00 am: get dressed, let the cat out, pack lunch, fill water bottles with ice

5:00 am - 5:20 am: drive to work

5:20 am - 2:30 pm: work

2:30 pm - 3:10 pm: drive home (takes about a half an hour but sometimes longer with traffic)

3:10 pm - 4:00 pm: chores (water plants, empty dishwasher) and make/eat dinner or snack

4:00 pm - 6:00 pm: study (or run on non-study day)

6:00 pm - 7:30 pm: read books, catch up on news, do chores,  research vacations that ultimately get canceled, etc.

7:30 pm / 8:00 pm: bed time

Then repeat! Seriously, these days a trip to the grocery store is like a vacation, and a vacation is...well, what is a vacation? 

Are you experiencing this phenomena? What does your groundhog day look like? 


Looking Back: August

The last time I did a "looking back" post for August, it started like this: August was a good month! As usual, it was filled with lots of outdoor activities, family and friends! I love summer! Well this year sure is different! Not that I do not love summer, but this year was not filled with very many outdoor activities, family or friends! In fact, COVID, topped with a healthy dose of forest fires, has really put the kibosh on pretty much everything! But I still managed to eek out a few "summer" activities! 

Running: I won't lie; running has been a bit meh lately. I am having a hard time getting motivated to go out, and the fact that there were several very hot weeks, and then thunderstorms and then smoke, has only added to my enthusiasm, or lack thereof. However, I did get out and about each weekend a little, including a fun hike with my brother and Dad at the beginning of the month. Total running miles ended up being 215 miles, including the hiking trip. 

Running in the smoke

: Some people watch a lot of Netflix; other people read a lot of books! I fit very strongly into the latter camp. In August I read 11 books (7 of them were audiobooks). My favorites were (1) Unorthodox: this is a book about a Hasidic Jewish girl in Brooklyn and her struggles to live within the confines of her religious group. I learned a lot, for instance, did you know that the Hasidic women all shave their heads and then wear a wig or a shawl? (2) One of Us is Lying: this book reminded me of The Breakfast Club; it is about a group of highschoolers and one of them dies unexpectedly and we have to find out if he was killed, and by whom. Each person has a distinct personality and it is fun to try to figure out who-done-it. (3) Know my Name: this book was about a woman who got assaulted on the Stanford campus and how helpless she felt. It was powerful and had many uncomfortable moments, but it really makes you feel how she felt (and still feels) after the trauma. 

Travel: Ah, travel, what is that? Just kidding. At the beginning of the month, I met up with my brother and my Dad and we did a backpacking trip in the Sierras for a couple of days. This was a lot of fun, as it's been a while since we have done a hike together (I think the last one was climbing Mount Shasta in 2013; can that be right?) It was fun to be with the guys and also interesting to see the dynamic change. My Dad used to plan everything and carry everything and be the leader and this time, we decided on the location together, I planned all of the meals and carried all of the food and had the maps, and my brother carried my Dad's tent. We are now peers more than father and kids and it is fun to make decisions together. Other than that trip, I spent the rest of the weekends at home. 

Hiking with the lads

Etc. & Misc.: Speaking of spending the weekends at home, I have been studying a lot and taking some breaks to experiment with making dehydrated food, protein bars and balls for backpacking (anybody have a protein bar/ball recipe with no flour and no sugar that is high in calories and stays together and can be carried on the trail for several days?) If asked what I spent the majority of my money on in the past 6 months, it would definitely be food! Other than that, I have been picking things from the garden (figs, tomatoes, peppers) and hanging out with Gato. 

What have you been up to? Do you have any good book recommendations? What was the most fun thing you did in August?