Friday, November 30, 2007

so raw, you might need ointment

Monday was the first day of the thirty-days mostly raw diet. The "mostly" is because I am still drinking coffee. I admit it, I am quite the java-junking, the coffee-craver and the caffeine-consumer. I also do not want to get one heck of a wicked withdrawal headache but, honestly, that is just an excuse to not stop imbibing my liquid vice. Other than that, the diet has been raw, raw, raw.

The tangible plan began over the weekend. We put together a tentative week long menu and from that I extrapolated a shopping list. Now having just moved, we did not have much of anything in the pantry. This was a major shopping voyage.

First stop, Cornucopia in Sayville, NY. I had not been to this little gem of a health food store in about five and a half years, but it is still how I remembered: small business, friendly feel with mostly exorbitant prices. Where else are you going to get some of the raw essentials, especially when we were not plugged in to order things online? Exactly!

Next, we headed over to Costco, to stock up on some bulk items and fresh produce. It is much cheaper to buy nuts there than the food store. Of course, you have to read labels to make sure they are raw and not roasted, toasted or otherwise heated. I think this is the first time that I only made purchases that were actually on my list. Go, me!

Last stop of the day, good, old fashioned Long Island food store. Dang! They were out of lemons and we did get screwed on the price of some nori sheets...that were toasted, incidentally. (Okay, so coffee and 5 nori sheets were not raw....we'll live.)

Back at the apartment (which still is not fully in order) we unloaded and put away all our yummy treasures. I took a moment to admire the beautiful aesthetics of the produce, nuts and spices on the kitchen island. At that point, my excitement was almost tangible.

As for the meals, let me just tell you, I have never experienced such a wonderfully full flavor experience. There have been a couple of "okay-but-we-need-to-tweak-this-if-we-are-going-to-make-it-again" recipes, but most of the recipes have been amazing and delicious beyond belief. Seriously some of the best tasting food I have ever eaten. Even after only five days, I have come to notice some changes in myself, physically and mentally.

Here are some of my observations:
I truly look forward to eating and am not obsessing about it. It is more of a pleasure rather than a glutenous activity trying to satiate some form of emptiness.

Live foods, especially in the right combination, taste amazingly dynamic. I feel good after I eat; I am full and energetic rather than stuffed and lethargic.

My body, mind and soul are satisfied, actually satisfied, and content, very content. I can not explain how eating this way feels in it's totality; it is just something that needs to be experienced.

I feel light. This, too, is difficult to explain. I know I have not lost in the way of weight since it has only been five days (well, actually, I do not know that since the battery is not back in the scale yet. Just an assumption.) but I feel lighter, my clothes fit better, I do not feel bloated or uncomfortable by any means.

Even with the dry, chilled air, my dry skin is not so dry anymore. I suppose the higher amounts of healthier fats, notably the EFAs, must be helping.

My energy level is not spiking or dropping. I am not even getting the post-lunch, mid-afternoon sleepies....even at a boring job.

When I am hungry, I eat. There is no guilt or worry about what I am putting in my body. Everything, even the occasional indulgent snacks, are incredibly healthful and full of nutrients.

When I am full, I stop. It is amazing how quickly I feel full. I am sure the higher fiber content contributes to this. I also feel like my body is not wanting more and more in order to try and obtain the vitamins and minerals it needs when I have filled up on empty calories.
(Baja Cheeze Burrito w/Taco Nut Meat and Red Pepper Corn Salsa)

People react oddly when you rack out a spread of non-typical foodstuff and they sometimes project their own discomfort onto you. For example, Greg and I were eating our lunch when one of our co-workers had to keep commenting about the fact that we were eating "cabbage an' stuff". She continued saying, (insert bad cliche' New Yawk ack-scent here) "You's are makin me feel guilty 'bout eatin' mah lunch wit you eatin dat healthy stuff in heya. I feel like a chubba, me an mah chubby belly."

My list to Santa is going to have some kitchen gadgets on it.

I have not craved any cooked food or junk food.

I have had three dreams about working for three different courier services including FedEx, UPS and the United Postal Service. However, I have my doubts that it has anything to do with eating a raw foods diet.

That is all for now. Thanks for reading. I am going to go to bed and dream about DHL.

Thursday, November 29, 2007

office space character one: the worker bee

Working a temp job is allowing me to steep in the tea of the cubical microcosm again. What a sociological experiment in action!

To set the setting, please note that the office that we are working is not the type of place I would consider for a career. It is a job that is strictly for the paycheck, something I cannot do for too long without feeling stifled and constricted. It's an office. It has cubicle walls. Mindless and repetitive paper shuffling and phone calling. Not in my field of study and not the type of work that contributes to society in a way that I would find some sort of soul-satisfaction. I do not dread it nor do I look forward to it. It just is, and I accept that. I will not be there long. (They already mentioned that they want to offer us permanent position with the company. Mind you, this is nothing to feed my ego. Having worked through temp agencies before, I have come to the conclusion that if you have half a brain and act in a professional manner, the bosses fall all over you with job offers. It always made me wonder how bad previous temps have been considering I never thought what I was doing was anything out of the ordinary. But I digress.)
One thing that makes the job more interesting is the observation of the different subgroups of workers and their interactions, or lack there of, with each other.
The first group, and the ones that I spontaneously named first, are the worker bees. These are the one's who constantly keep their nose in their paperwork, only to raise them to tsk-tsk anyone who takes a moment break outside of the occasional trip to the john and the strict half-hour only break in the eight and a half hour work day. They appear to take their job so seriously that they would not waste a moment of productivity by going to the kitchen, imbibing in some coffee and taking one too many piss breaks. I also get the sense that they have such a fear of getting yelled at and flogged by the bosses for standing up to stretch. I actually saw one of these higher up Worker Bees, yell at another temp as if she was a schoolmarm keeping the children in their rows. The temp had simply reached for something in her purse, noticed there was some chewing gum on her camera and took it out to wipe off the offending gum before putting it back into her purse. Worker Bee scolder her with a stern "Put that away!" command while walking swiftly by and rolling her eyes. Wow, now who would not want to work under that strict eye??? Sad thing is, as integral of a cog that these Worker Bees thing they are in the grand scheme of the work mechanism...everyone of them is easily replaceable.
Mind you, I was raised to have solid work ethic. I get my work done and I have even been known to go above and beyond at times. But there has to be a moment where you step back and realize that most jobs are just that: JOBS. Do you want to work for just a paycheck? Do you want to spend forty-hours a week focusing on some imagined goal that is the ruse or subterfuge to the task of making money for the CEO? That is what these Worker Bees seem to do. I wonder what their perceived satisfaction is in what they are doing, if there is any. Is their worth as humans determined by their output of the machine? Again the bottom line is, we leave and another takes our place. Does that sound like you are worth something?
That is all for tonight. Apologies for any grammar issues. I am way too tired to proofread. Editing will occur over the weekend. I have to go get some rest so I can be a model temp tomorrow (hey, I did mention that I was working just for the paycheck right now. Yeah, I'm a fucking hypocrite, but I have the title under my name: TEMP. Woot Woot!)

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

holy crow!

It is about time we got this sucker hooked up! Yes, bless Cablevision's little heart, we have finally been reconnected to the mind-numbing realm of info-tainment! And here I am, after purging through 872 emails to enhance my male potency, purchase authentic replica watches and buy all of my pharmaceuticals cheap, cheap, cheap........and reading and responding to emails of friends who probably thought I was ignoring them....I am just popping in to say hello. It is creeping in on midnight and my neurons aren't so sharp so I will return tomorrow....more rested and synaptically stimulated.

Thursday, November 22, 2007

...ork new york new york new york new y...

We're getting settled and should be plugged back in some time tomorrow. Woot Woot! It has been an exhausting week. Moved in on Sunday, started a temp job on Monday, living out of boxes....all the fun stuff. But, boy, do I have some tales to tell! Now, I am going to enjoy some Thanksgiving side dishes....I'm the only vegetarian in the family....and some pumpkin bars!!!! Triple woot woot woot!

Friday, November 16, 2007

my week wrapped in brown cardboard boxes

my week
Originally uploaded by misslissa13
As of later today, I will be without internet connection for a spell. We are shutting off service in our soon-to-be-former apartment and our new service is not scheduled to be installed until December 8th. *sigh* I will be checking in periodically at my folks' house since I will be within driving distance for the first time in about five years. This hiatus of services will also make it difficult to post my Art Every Day Month stuff. I will have to do some catch up in December but I covered my ass through Sunday by posting four photos in the group today. See? Forward thinking!

Uprooting and moving again is bringing up stress and self examination, as it always does. I am riding the wave of it and seeing what transpires. That is really all I can do. Introspection gets deeper at these times, as does "future thought". What will the next chapter of life include? What goals will I reach? What will change? What will stay stagnant? Do not get me wrong, I actually enjoy the pensive and even the sometimes somber thinking. It reminds me that I am real, and being real is what it's all about. I am sure there will be some deeper posts forthcoming.

Since I dismantled our desk last night, I have been sitting here on the floor, amongst the boxes, with my feet falling asleep. It time to face the day, finish up the loose ends and finalize the packing. See you in a few days!


Tuesday, November 13, 2007

packing, art, packing, raw food planning, packing and...uh...packing

packing packing packing
Originally uploaded by misslissa13
And taking some time to walk and take some pictures for Art Every Day Month. This picture is not one of them....these are really...they are. Greg and I have been checking "to do's" off the list and slowly packing. We have got the rental truck reserved for Saturday and have a couple of friends and family helping on both ends of the move. Whew! Though the more the merrier. (nudge, nudge, wink, wink, say no more)

As for my daily art, pictures have been the easiest way since most everything is in chaos. Well not total chaos, just unique disarray. I have also been doodling with my Sharpies (oh my, that sounds a little perverted out of context) and letting myself "play" with ink and paper. It has been quite fun. I will have to scan some of them to share soon.

Other than that, we have been trying to get some exercise in to our days and I am putting together a thirty-day primarily raw foods menu for the time between Thanksgiving and Christmas. I just read through Ani Phyo's book, Ani's Raw Food Kitchen, which has some amazing recipes I am looking forward to making. We will see how we feel after thirty days and will adjust what percentage of raw foods work for us in the long term. That should also be long enough to detox our bodies, get past that initial ucky-detoxy feeling and see how good we feel. I will keep you updated as things transpire.

That is all for now, folks. Here are the pictures I chose for AEDM (lots more photos on flickr):


Saturday, November 10, 2007

dusk through the window blinds

I have taken pictures through this window many times over the past year. I have no idea why I am drawn to this particular window as a photo frame, I just am. This is another submission for Art Every Day Month.

art every day month

curtain call
Originally uploaded by misslissa13
With things in flux, it has been a little difficult creating art every day. Today, I played around with the camera and posted three photos. Though they were quickly taken and altered with Picture it!, I actually like the way they came out. I think I will go draw now.


the art of leaving

gentle exit
Originally uploaded by
misslissa13 Art Every Day Month Entry

We are back in Rhode Island for our final week as Rhodies. I say that slightly in jest, since I do not know if I feel at all like a Rhody. Perhaps it is because I have not lived here more than a year, perhaps it is just my stubborn resistance. Whatever it is, I have to say, I feel more Coloradan than Rhody, and more New Yorker than that.

All of the moving I have done, all the places I have lived and all the states I have resided have helped me learn more about myself. My time in Colorado had a profound affect on me. I moved there, not knowing a soul and only having been to the state once, and that was for my interview at Naropa. It was scary and exciting, hard and growth provoking. I loved every difficult moment of the experience, for it forced me out of my comfort zone and into deep self exploration. Much of the time I was also in the throes of a relationship that triggered a lot of self-doubt. On the other end, I would not have changed a thing.

As for leaving RI, I am slightly saddened about leaving; feeling like this experience is not quite done. It is also sparking twinges of missing Colorado. Moving back to New York is also stirring up many layers of emotion. Frustration, excitement, nostalgia, hope, joy of being closer to loved ones, stress of moving, thrill of new goes on. Most layers are positive and I am curious as to what these next few years will bring. Greg studying acupuncture, me studying nutrition, starting my therapy practice, being grounded in a single place for a few years, getting to see the people I love on a regular basis and having new opportunities are just some of the things I am looking forward to.

Change, as always, is happening, outside and within.

Thursday, November 8, 2007

once a punk

....always a punk. Just giving you an update about what is happening here.

- I have not created any art these past couple of days, but I have been thinking of some things I want to do.

- We are getting a post office box in our soon-to-be new town today.

- Greg is upgrading his very-outdated cell phone and getting me one. Can you believe it? Not only am I going to have a cell phone again (it has been five years or so) but I have a man who truly enjoys taking care of me. He must think I'm special!

- We are setting up a rental truck to officially move in a week and a half (!!!). I am curious to see how many of our friends make themselves scarce that weekend to avoid having to help with the heavy lifting. ;)

- We are planning a 30-day mostly raw menu to follow between Thanksgiving and Christmas. I just want to see how my body reacts to it and help detox after all the pumpkin bars I plan on consuming at Thanksgiving. (Some of you know what my mother's pumpkin bars are and can relate as to why I plan on enjoying every morsel of pumkiny-goodness I can. Those of you who do not, trust me, they are fantastic. E-mail me if you want the recipe.)

- We will be starting work through a temp agency shortly after we move and I will be starting my own therapy practice in a couple of months. Woot woot! More on that soon.

- And, yes, that is me on the right side of the picture circa 1988. Cute, eh? Well I must be off to get stuff done with my Greg. Until later, folks. Cheers!

Monday, November 5, 2007

art every day month

yellow stairs
Originally uploaded by misslissa13
So here is entry number five. I had my camera with me on my last day of work and was able to take some pictures of this building across the street from my (now former) work building. There are more photos on flickr too. Sorry this is brief folks, I have to boogie out of here something quick-like.

Sunday, November 4, 2007

and so it continues

Addendum to my post this morning. I just got an email from former roommate Kerry that he and Christine are moving back to New York this month! What a wacky Universe we are living in! God I love these synchronicities.

art every day month

Here is my November 4th submission. It is also my last day being on call for my job since tomorrow is my last day working there. No calls all week until today, and sheesh, I have had a few. Nothing like going out with style. Well, I managed to do some doodling in between phone calls and box packing. At least I am multitasking and being productive....and I have the doodling to keep me sane.

don't worry, there's no quiz at the end

This will by no means make anything clearer. It will, however, back up the fact that life is never boring and is filled with lots of synchronicity. Ready for some head spinning? Here we go:

Map 1
1 Lake Grove, NY
2 Lafayette, CO
3 Boulder, CO (apt B1)
4 Boulder, CO (apt B2)
5 Boulder, CO (apt B3)
6 Denver, CO (apt D1)
7 Denver, CO (apt D2)
8 East Providence, RI
9 Patchogue, NY

Cast of players:
Melissa - yours truly
Greg - the best!
E - ex #1
L - ex #1's wife
A - ex #2
Kerry - roommate

- Grew up in location 1, where my folks still live (yay!)
(There was an incidental move 7 miles away to Sayville, NY, but considering I am focusing on the past in under 6...years, I will ignore this know, to keep it simple. haha)
- Moved to location 2 to start grad school
- Moved to location 3 to be closer to grad school and far away from crazy woman I subleased from
- Moved to location 4 when A was moving out with dog S
- Moved to location 5 when things with A took a turn for the worse
- Moved to 6 with roommate Kerry when building 5 was sold and new owners were converting it back to a one family
- Moved to 7 (Greg's Denver apartment) when lease with Kerry was up and his fiance' was moving in
- Moved to 8 when 7 lease was up
- We are currently in the middle of move to 9

Okay, that part was relatively simple. Here are some crazy synchronicity (see if you can follow):
- All players involved were originally from Long Island (some never left)
- Began friendship with Greg when we were teens living 9 miles apart
- Greg and E went to HS together
- Me and L went to HS together
- Greg and L graduated the same year
- Me and E graduated the same year
- E shares a birthday with my father
- Lost touch with Greg some time after Community College
- While dating E, we both took a poetry class taught by A
- E broke up with me and began dating L, engaged 6 months later and eventually married
- After class ended and grades were in, I began dating, and eventually becoming engaged to A
- A introduced me to Transpersonal Psychology which is how I learned about Naropa University for my grad work
- Moved almost 2000 miles to 1, then 2, and, while at 3, A moved to CO
- Moved to 4, 5, then 6
- I did not know roommate Kerry while living in NY. Met him through a mutual friend from LI about the time when Kerry's former roommate moved out and I needed a place. That worked out well. Got a place to live and gained valuable friendship.
- Kerry's fiance' and I share the same birthday
- While at 6, found Greg's profile online stating that he just so happened to be moving to Denver the next month
- Greg moved, friendship reunited, love grew
- Moved in with Greg at 7
- Moved about 2000 miles together to 8
- Planning and in the process of move to 9
- E and L also live at 9

Did you follow all that? Did not think so!

Map 3:
Greg and I both moved about 2000 miles to fall in love with each other and move back to a place (C) 11 miles from where I grew up (A) and 6 miles from where he grew up (B). And we'll be living down the hall from E and L.

Okay, I think I got this all of this straight. Life is certainly never boring!

Saturday, November 3, 2007

art for november 2nd and 3rd

So this, my second and third entry for the Art Every Day Month, come from a laugh we were having yesterday evening. My coworkers, boss, Greg and I went out for a "going away shindig" after work yesterday. We enjoyed our time at the new location of a restaurant and bar called Cuban Revolution in Providence. Decorated with radical decor and art, we laughed at the idea that Chris, our boss, would probably love to have a stencil-like art piece of himself in the office depicting the same style as the one by our table. So, of course my mind ran with it. I came home last night and printed out a photo I have of boss-man. I then converted it into an pen and ink drawing in a stencil-like style. That was as far as I got last night.

Today, I took my chances at playing around with Photoshop, a program I have zero experience with. Under the tutelage of Greg, I was able to create an extremely similar-to-the-piece-at-the-restaurant version of my boss.
Thank goodness my coworkers and boss have good senses of humor, and they appreciate mine. This Art Every Day Month project is a lot of fun. Until tomorrow....cheers, Melissa

Friday, November 2, 2007

blessed be our rent

Thank you, Apartmentos, for granting us access and acceptance to a brand shiny new apartment!

Woot woot!

and a little sadness creeps in and is painted

i see fishes
Originally uploaded by misslissa13

A slight sadness has crept into my stomach this morning. This is the second to last day at my job in Providence. I am going to miss the kids I have worked with this past year, most of whom are really great kids with really tough lives. They were born into chaos and this chaos seems to perpetuate even more chaos. Many of them will be in my thoughts for years to come. I will wonder and hope that their lives have turned around and that they have come out stronger or at least relatively unscathed. I know many of them will not; I am realistic. But I am also hopeful. None of them are a lost cause.

What can I say about my coworkers....they are an amazing group of gifted, caring individuals. Strong women and insightful men, all possessing amazing and unique personalities and the ability to laugh and stay balanced (most of the time).

Change happens and I love it! No stagnation, always growing and moving forward, enjoying each step of the way. Luckily, I have decided to participate in Art Every Day Month (AEDM) to keep me grounded in this major transition time. I found this idea from Leah on her blog. She has been quite an inspiration to me. Check out her blog, her art is lovely, as well as her journey through life. Here are the basic guidelines I loosely copied from her blog:

November 2007: Fifth Annual Art Every Day Month
Rules are simple: Make art every day for the month of November, post it on your blog if you can, and have fun with it! Art is loosely defined here, just be creative in any way your heart desires (painting, collage, doodle, drawing, clay, poem, video, music, knitting, whatever!) Even if you just make art every week or once this month, the goal is simply to bring more creativity into your life. November 2007 is the 5th year of AEDM. Feel free to join in the fun! Be an Everyday Creative, Be Creative Every Day!

You can "sign up" by leaving a comment on her AEDM post. I did in order to hold myself accountable and not flake out on this. Art is therapeutic for me and this is a good way to continue getting back in touch with that side of myself. Please let me know if you are coming along for the ride. I will be keeping you all updated as to what I am working on. For yesterday's work I want to share this:

Is it art? I do not know. The other day I was gathering my snacks and lunch to bring to work. While getting a bag to tote these yummy delights, I walked back and noticed the lovely array of colors I was planning on consuming that day. I was struck by the variety. Unfortunately, the photos came out a bit blurry, which I did not realize since I was in a hurry to get to work. Alas, after work, the palette had already been consumed so I could not recreate it. I am glad, though, because this was unplanned, spontaneous art that just occurred in my daily grind. Life is amazing, we just need to take those moments to see it's awe.

I look forward to sharing this AED Month-long journey with you. I have curiosity of what will transpire throughout the move and my increased access to my art supplies, many of which are stored at my parents' house in New York. I also look forward to seeing what others are creating for this month (and beyond).