vrijdag 31 juli 2009

Almost weekend

Good morning! I slept pretty good tonight and got a bit over the weird mood I was in yesterday haha.

Because dinner sucked (pardon my french) yesterday, I hardly ate anything. I don't like throwing food away at all, but this just made me a bit sick to my stomach so there was no other option.

Therefore I woke up starving! So I made the deliciously creamy banata oatmeal from Kath. It was soooo good! I wasnt so fond of oatmeal yet, but the way this was prepared just made it taste so much better! And i didnt need to add any sugar!

Okay, I really have to get back to work now, I just wanted to rave about my breakfast for a while, lol

Oh, almost forgot: here is the picture of it. I did not use berries in it, instead I added assorted nuts and raisins to it and a little cinnamon. I heard a lot of people saying that they add peanut butter to their oatmeal and i just couldnt imagine, but now, with the peanuts there I have an idea and I will try someday soon!

donderdag 30 juli 2009

The persuit of happiness

As I said before work was a disaster today. Before going home I went to my parents' place because I'm taking care of their cat until Sunday. The cat was very happy and came to cuddle with me for a while. I felt bad because I couldn't stay with him long. But after I gave him his food he ate and then took off outside...:S

I went home and did some work on my blog and read my other favorite blogs. So far for my very interesting day.
But I did come up with a theme for my blog finally. I was playing around with the theme of happiness, because for me that's the most important thing there is in life. I think part of my restlessness (is that a word? lol) comes from me not being entirely happy with my life how it is now. Not that I am unhappy now, I just think it can be better: I'm in for nothing less than bright and shiny!


So I decided I am going to use this blog to figure out what happiness means. What are the things that make me happy? And I don't mean that in a very spiritual way, even though I do think spirituality has to do with it. I am talking about mainly everyday things. How do I achieve those things? How do I design my life?

Having studied psychology my interest in happiness is kind of logical. In the end everything is about well-being/happiness. Psychology is the study of human behaviour and I think most of everybody's behaviour is driven by the desire to be happy, or at least what you think makes you happy.

So here are some of the things that make me happy:



feeling good about myself


feeling rested

feeling healthy


Sorry, for the mess, I still dont understand a lot about html code yet,but I prefer this over everything lines up underneath eachother.

So, this is all pretty straightforward and obvious. But the thing is to incorporate all these things in you life in such a way that you feel good about it. For instance, I can make sure that all of this is in my life, but if I force myself to do/have all of that, chances of getting a burn out are higher than those of happiness. It's not realistic to try and make your life perfect. It will only make you miserable. It's all about balance and priorities and that is what I find difficult: what do I prioritize?I am pretty much done thinking about this for now though. I will not have the answers tonight anyway. I will have to learn trough trial and error. I will start with one living after one balanced goal each month. The first one, which I have already been working on: getting rested.

I am going to finish off with one other thing I did find out:My career is not as important in my life as I thought it was/would be.

What are the things that make you happy?


I have been so incredibly restless that last couple of weeks! And our moving plans have not made it any better at all!
Yes, we may sell our house and buy another one, bigger and in a more quiet place! I am so excited about it! But right now the best thing I can do is continue cleaning up the mess in our office/study and continue doing what I always do at least until we talked to the bank and know exactly how much money we can get....

But even before the moving plans, my brain was already bullying itself with all these thoughts, dreams, ideas and new interests. Even though it is a lot of fun passings your days like this, it's getting annoying now, because it keeps me from doing the things that I am supposed to do. And I keep getting the feeling that it means that I am not entirely happy with the way my life is...I have to think about that some more. But not now...I have to get back to work and try to finish some stuff before I go home.

I know I haven't been around here for a couple of days, but not much of interest happened anyways.
Ok, gotto go now, but will be back later!

maandag 27 juli 2009


Good evening!! I am going to make this a quick post because I have stuff to do and the boyfriend wants to use the computer.

Today was my first real working day. Last week it didn't really feel like work (and to be honest I did not do as much as i as supposed to/hoped to do). Work went really well, I was motivated and finished an important part of my analyses, so now I get to focus on writing the article!

My spelt bread turned out really good yesterday! i forgot to take pictures, but it looked like a real bread and tasted just as good as the other spelt bread i bought form a organic food store.

Yesterday I finished all the administration things! I threw away so much stuff! Now i get to continue with the next part of the administration. I think it;s more paper work....
Talking about paper work: we made an appointment today with the bank to discuss our mortgage opportunities, but it's not untill friday next week. However, the real estate guy will be here wednesday to give us some advice!

Dinner today was good: Croque madame with spinach salad! Even though it sounds quite chique, it was just a grilled cheese-ham sandwich with an egg on top :

As for workouts: i decided not to go to the gym today and have a rest day. But I am going to do the balance exercises that are part of the boot camp at Oh She Glows .

Ok, I really gotta go right now. Also my head is pretty full so i can't focus very well on writing. 'Till next time!

zondag 26 juli 2009

Sunday afternoon

Hello! I am having a really relaxed fun weekend. Too bad that tomorrow I have to get back to work again. Yesterday I did not manage to do everything I wanted to do, but that doesnt matter really. I ended up spending way too much time at the computer. I did do groceries and washed and vacuumed my car. Now it's all bright and shiny again! I really love my car!

After that I needed some energy so I made a Green Monster. It was really good! It contained

- 100 ml yoghurt

- 1 banana

- 4 strawberries

- 1 tblsp linseed

- 4 blocks frozen spinach

After inhaling it and feeling very refreshed I went over to my parents place to borrow the bread baking machine and chat for a while. After that I was really excited because when I told my dad about a house that is for sale for a very reasonable price he got really enthusiastic and we talked for a while how it might be a good time to sell our apartment. Because of the financial crisis the market is not very good so it's hard to sell your house for a high price. But our apt will never make us rich anyway, so why not sell it real quick for a very low price and buy a relatively cheap bigger house? It is possible because we payed very little to buy it in the first place. So now we have to act fast and talk to the bank about mortgage opportunities and to a real estate guy about selling our house. We want to ask him about the value of the house and whether it is better to remodel the bathroom and kitchen first or not. Right now, those both rooms look like we started to remodel but forgot to continue and finish it. The rest of the house looks ok. So it's all very exciting!!

Mom and dad also happened to own two tackers (staple guns) so that saved me a trip to the store. I hope it is going to work out with the chairs! Can't wait to start on them!

After that I only changed the bed sheets and folded some clothes and then it was dinner time!. I made a salad we had in Paris which was really good. It was salad with honey-mustard dressing with baked potato slices, tomato, ham and camembert cheese.

The boyfriend and I talked about moving and stuff over dinner and now we are both excited!! The boyfriend got a little bonus for staying longer at work today. His boss told him to buy wine with it, but it was quite a lot to only buy wine! Therefore we went downstairs to the pool centre around the corner. It had been quite while since we played pool, but I managed to kick the boyfriends butt! Me, the beginner pool player won from the guy who used to play competitions! Woot! Doing as BFs boss said we had wine to go with it.

Then we really tired and sort of drunk, so we went home to sleep. I think i slept for almost 10 hours, and that was so good!! After breakfast (yogurt with oats and strawberries) I decided to go for a run. I did lesson 4 of my start to run course:

1 min run, 1 min walk

2 x 2 min run, 2 min walk

2x 3 min run, 3 min walk

It was the same as lesson 3, but ok. I felt really good at the last 3 min run so I decided to run the last 2 min as fast as i could. Pfff, that was hard! When I came back I did part of the Summer Glo Boot camp exercises:

3 x 1 min wall sit

1 min plank

30 sec side plank each side.

Then I really did not feel like doing anything anymore even though I am still supposed to do the side planks again and als 20 pushups and chairdips. Maybe I will later....

After my shower I had 2 breakfast cake with butter (dutch thing again) and later 2 crackers with cheese. Then I made myself finish the household chores that were waiting for me: folded the rest of the clothes, dusted, cleaned windows and mirrors from spots, vacuumed, mobbed and emptied trash!

And now I am hungry again!! And i;m waiting for my bread to finish. I searched the internet for a recipe of spelt bread and filled the bread baking machine. And now I have to wait, I hope it will turn out well!

I'll report on that in my next post. Now I'm off sorting out some old administration stuff and look at current bills.

zaterdag 25 juli 2009

Kings of summer

Wow, days are passing so quickly! But I have had a lot of fun since my last post.
I managed to to work just a little, though not enough. So I will have to be working this weekend too.

Thursday afternoon my brother and I went to Nijmegen to see our English friends at the Vierdaagse. Because the whole town is just packed with people we parked the car in a village on the other side of the river and walked the 2.5k over there. We had some drinks and catched up. Later we went to get them a typical Dutch snack: poffertjes! They are a little like tiny pancakes and you eat them with butter and sugar.

Then we went back home because the English really had to go to sleep, or at least one of them did. His wife had dropped out the day before due to some severe blisters where the skin came off her feet, iiiieeeks!

Thursday and friday I also spend sorting through my boxes with memories and photos. I encountered all kinds of little things like shells, beer coasters, self-made necklaces and letters and old diaries. It was so much fun to go through them! I also trew some stuff out. For example, how many cards saying 'I love you and I am so happy we are together' that you ex's gave to you do you want to hang on to? I did keep the letters though because they are about something instead of just general expressions of affection. I organised the stuff and now it fits neatly into two boxes again. The whole thing is actually part of the bigger project of cleaning up our office/study room. My next thing is going to be some old administration (now that is a lot less interesting than sorting through memories, right?). I am going to look up what you need to keep for how long and then I think i will be able to toss out a lot! Keep you posted..

Yesterday I finally got to do something I've been dying to do for a while now: go to the fabric market in town to scoe some pretty nicely priced fabrics for my sewing projects!
On the right are the black one and the one with flowers which will be turned into a dress. The purple one is going to be a vest. It's really comfy stretch fabric. The dark blue fabric on the left is for refinishing the chairs of the dining table. On of today's missions is to find a staple gun and then i can get started! After buying this and a LOT of strawberries for no money at all I made myself leave the market. I felt like a kid in a candy store, there were some many fabrics that I loved loved loved! And I didn't even see half of the stands!

So I left the market and went for a haircut I was in desperate need of. I think it turned out ok, I still need to shower and then I will be able to see. This is because the lady who cut my hair went crazy on the blowdrying and I ended up looking like my hair had exploded! And later that day my curls miraculously disappeared and I was forced to have a ponytail for the rest of the day.

After that I went to a mill nearby to get some spelt, so today I am going to bake my first bread ever! I asked my mom to lend me her bread baking machine and then i'll see what happens.

At night we went back to Nijmegen again, the boyfriend tagged along too. We celebrated the fact that our friend had finished the vierdaagse! I was amazed on how smoothly he was walking that night. I remember that last year after I finished I wasn't really able to do anything anymore, let alone walk! We had a good time chatting and having drinks. I didn't drink a drop of alcohol because I knew we were probably going to run in to an alcohol patrouille on our way back and i just wanted to be sure. And of course we did! Because so many people are out there with all the partying that come together with the Vierdaagse they shut down all the roads. In our case they just shut down the highway and make you take the exit to do the blowing test. Of course I passed, and they gave me the BOB key chain!! (usually they run out of those really soon, and I have only had to do the test twice in my life anyway). The boyfriend was jealous because whenever he is the Bob they never have them. Now for the non Dutch readers: Bob is an abbreviation that means as much as a driver who consciously did not drink. There is a big campaign here with commercials and ads about assigning someone to be Bob when going out in a group. And that Bob then will be able to get everyone home safely.

So let's continue with workouts: well, thursday I walked for an hour so I thought that was enough exercise. Yesterday I wanted to go the gym, but I didnt make it because we went to Nijmegen. But that's ok. Today I will do the Oh she glows boot camp exercises I was supposed to do on Thursday and then Sunday i'll probably go for a run.

What did I eat? Thursday nite I was too tired and lazy to cook so we went to get a Turkish Durum take out. And of course i had snacked on the poffertjes too, even though i wasn't supposed because of my wheat free diet.

Friday morning i had oatmeal with a banana. I snacked on sesame cookies until I got home from the market and the mill. Then I had two crackers with cheese and another one with my freshly bought strawberries. That tasted soo goood!! In the evening I tried out a new dish: mexican oven dish. it was delicious!! The boyfriend and I both wished there was more to eat!

Ok, now I'm off taking a shower and then continue on some errands and housekeeping.

donderdag 23 juli 2009

Morning frustrations

I am not someone who gets frustrated easily over things. I don't like being angry and I don't like to spend energy on negative things you can't really anything about in the first place, like traffic jams, be surprised by the rain and getting soaking wet, just missing the bus. But i'm only human, so sometimes you can't escape frustration. And sometimes it even comes in handy. This morning it was one of the monitors of my computer. When I turned it on it gave no image and made freaky noises. Of course it was the main monitor (where the start menu and desktop items are and where everything pops up) so I wasn't really able to use the computer at all! That's not good if you have to work. Called the boyfriend for advice and he said that just unplugging the monitor would probably not help. I first tried switching the connectors of the two monitors, but for some reason they had diferent sizes. The one i wanted to keep was bigger so it would not fit in the regular spot on the PC where the monitor goes. So i ended up disconnecting the monitor from the server and putting it instead of the broken monitor. Not much of a probleme exept that the broken monitor weighs as much and is at least the size of an old fashioned big tv (not the flat screen plasma ones). That is where my frustration helped me: it gave me the strength to lift the giant thing! (or maybe my work outs are paying off, lol). When i turned the computer on, it immedeately turned the second monitor (the alive one) into the primary one, making the 'new' one secondary! (can you follow?) So I think that in the end it would have been sufficient to just unplug the 'dead' one. But, hey enough about that. It's working now...

Yesterday eve I was too busy (watching tv) to write about my day, so I'll do that now. I had the day off and spend it on relaxing and working on some small projects. I finally finished my scrapbook pages of the walking event i attended last year! It was the first time I did such a thing and i think I like it. I noticed that as i progressed, the pages became more creative and interesting. I am definately going to make some more pages on other things too.

But first I wanted to continue making a dress. I like to sew my own clothes and right now i'm working on transforming a skirt into a dress. I learned how to on http://www.burdastyle.com/ . I hope it turns out well- that is, into something i'd like to wear.

The boyfriend was free as well, and he was teasing Chinta and made some cute and dorky pictures. And Chinta was just to lazy, or did not care enough, to move!
At the moment the boyfriend and I are watching Twin Peaks (are we behind or what?) It's such a funny and weird series. We have it on demand for free and only have 2 more episodes to go. I wonder how it's going to end!

Before dinner i managed to get myself to the gym for my body combat class. I started following these classes because i wanted a change from body pump and add some more cardio, but i am really starting to love those classes! You get a good sweat out of it and aside from the cardio you can really feel your muscles working.

So what did I eat today? For breakfast I had some yoghurt with banana, cornflakes and oats. Because it filled me up quite a lot and breakfast was later than usual i didnt need a snack this morning. For lunch we had french fries with a frikadel (typical dutch deep fried meat snack). I could really feel the difference by the way, from eating deep fried things for the first time since a couple of weeks. I felt less energetic. So to add some more healthy stuff and have enough energy for the combat class i made a green monster with frozen melon, milk, yoghurt and spinach. Delicious!! After working out I had dinner waiting for me: some kind of white fish, mashed potatoes and carrots and peas.

So, now I really have to get to work for a while. I am taking the afternoon off because i'm going to Nijmegen to cheer on our English friend who is walking the 4daagse. his partner dropped out yesterday, due to pain and blisters. I hope by that time it will have stopped raining!
Okay, really gone now. Making myself some tea and getting stuff done.

dinsdag 21 juli 2009

Run Daisy Run!

Hi again! I know my last post was in Dutch. This is because I am not sure yet, what language I want to have this blog in. Dutch is easier because it's my native language, but English is more common in blog-land. Also, it's good to practice...as if i don't do that at work...and frankly i don't care very much if i make mistakes.

Well, at some point i will figure out which language works best for me.

Ok, today was a quiet day again. Woke up in time and my breakfast consisted of vanilla flavoured quark with cornlakes and oats, pretty good!

I worked very hard at home (yay!) and finished some stuff i have been wanting to finish for a while now. Lunch was not very interesting: just some crackers with cheese, i wasn't feeling very hungry.

After work I went for my third running class. It was fun and very easy, still! If it keeps going like this I will be able to run that 5k in no time!

After running i did some push ups, according to the exercises of the summer glow boot camp. I think i am already getting stronger, and actually managed to do a few on my feet instead of 'cheating' on my knees!

The boyfriend has a barbecue from work, lol, it has been raining and even some thunder and lightning since dinner time. i hope he stays dry!

Also watched the news on the 4daagse, a huge 4 day walking event in a city close by. over 41000 people are participating and I am very proud to say that i did so last year! Yes, i walked 200k in 4 days!! These days i am finally working on some scrap pages of my experiences last year. Better late than never, right? ;)

Well, I have to go. Still have to finish my After Work Routine (it's a household thing, will talk about that some day) and then i want to take a zumba class. I usually do not go to the gym on tuesday, especially since the class is so late. But hey, i'm working at home this week so that saves me a lot of sleep anyway. The boyfriend is not at home and i really feel like dancing!! Woohoo!

maandag 20 juli 2009

Yay voor de Groene Monsters

Zo, hier dan mijn eerste post in het Nederlands. Jammer genoeg wordt het niet een hele spannende want veel is er niet gebeurd vandaag. Ik werk deze week lekker thuis in verband met de Vierdaagse, Nijmegen is echt lastig te bereiken nu en op werk hebben toch de meeste mensen vrij.

Het meer slapen is gisteren niet heel goed gelukt, vannacht maar 7 uurtjes geslapen, nou ja, vandaag weer een nieuwe poging zullen we maar zeggen. Heb wel best wel gezond gegeten. Ontbijt was havermout met banaan. Moet toch nog steeds wennen aan die smaak hoor, of misschien vind ik het koud wel lekkerder. Lunch was dit:

Kidneybonen met tonijn, tomaat en mayonaise en crackers, lekker!! Verder niet veel spannends gedaan eigenlijk. Ben net naar spinning-les geweest en heb daarvoor mijn tweede Groene Monster gehad (gisteren de eerste). Ik moet zeggen dat ik er tot nog toe erg enthousiast over ben!

Wat er vandaag inzat:
- 100ml yoghurt
- 1 banaan
- 1 flinke handvol halfbevroren meloen
- 4 deelblokjes halfbevroren spinazie

Hij was echt heel lekker en gaf me een hele lading energie, de spinningles was voorbij voordat ik erg in had!

Daarna naar huis waar het tijd was voor het avondeten. Vandaag mocht ik 'zondigen' van mijn tarwevrije dieet en spinaziepasta eten. Ga zo nog eventjes in huis aan de slag en dan is het alweer bijna bedtijd. De tijd gaat zo snel voorbij als je pas zo laat eet! Dus ga nu op schieten, dan heb ik nog wat tijd om te lezen voordat ik in slaap val.

Tot morgen!

zondag 19 juli 2009

Boot Camp!!

I know, I know! I still have not written anything about my adventures in Paris, and I promise I will do so. But first things first:
I have joined the Summer Glow Boot Camp at http://www.ohsheglows.com/. It's a bit late, because they started three weeks ago, but I'll just read back the old post and pretend it's going on now, lol. The boot camp involves doing some exercises every other day, but also thinking a lot about your own health and lifestyle. So, somewhere this week Angela had a post on goal setting. We were supposed to set some goals for this month, using three steps. So here we go!

First step: Set the goals

1. Become rested
2. Read more books
3. Loose some body fat

Second step: terminals for each goal, how do you know you have reached the goal?

1. Be happy to get up in the morning, don't fall asleep at work, feeling energized and less moody because of exhaustion.

2. Feeling caught up in a book, looking forward to reading more and the obvious one: finishing more than 2 books a year. Maybe one a month for starters. I love reading, but I just don't make the time for it.

3. Better fitting clothes, lower hip and belly measures, stomach flatter, feeling more energized and healthy. The last two are also because this goal is part of and probably a logical consequence of my long term goal: living healthy.

Third step: how are you going to achieve these goals?

1. Change schedules. I will go home from work earlier in the day so i can write on my article at home. This will make me feel less like i'm only at home to eat, do the household and sleep. And that in turn will make it easier for me to go to bed early. I get up at 5.30 am 4 days a week, so the night prior to that I will have to be sleeping at 9.30 pm. Next week I will be working at home though, so I will have the chance to sleep some extra.

2. I want to combine this with my first goal by going to bed at 9pm so i get to read some before going to sleep. And on my days off I will try to make some time to read an hour a day instead of running around doing stuff.

3. This is a long one, because it involves two major changes.
- More cardio work outs. I actually started with this a few weeks ago, I changed one of my strenth work outs to cardio and started doing lots of abs exercises. This last thing turned out not so good :S my abs are very sore now every time i work out. So here is the schedule: monday: spinning class, tuesday: running + bootcamp exercises (usually involves abs), wednesday, body combat class, thursday: running + bootcamp exercises, friday: body pump class + zumba class. Saturday: do groceries and clean the house is enough, sunday: running and bootcamp exercises. As for the running: i am not a runner! But i am following a mp3 course Start to Run, where somebody talks you through the whole thing and you will learn to run 5k within 10 weeks. Let's hope it works out and my ankle/calf muscle wont start hurting. I think starting up easy and stretching might be the key here.

- Look at my diet: eat healthy foods and less sugars and fat. The fact that I will have to follow a wheat-free diet for the next 6 weeks will make this easier (no more cookies) but also harder (no regular bread and other whole wheat things). I did this diet before and lost a few pounds, i think because i also ate a lot less sugars. I want to eat more vegetables, so I will probably replace bread more often for salads than spelt bread. And i want to make Green Monsters! Yesterday I had my first one and it was delicious!

- become active with operation beautiful http://www.operationbeautiful.com/ . So that i don't get caught up in a conflict with my weigth and measures just for that. It is about my health and feeling good, not about being skinny. I am not fat anyway, but if i continue growing just a little like i did over the past years i will be fat in while.

There are so many more goals I could set, because there are so many things I would like to do/accomplish! But for now the healthy part and the sleep part are very important because they have been making me miserable lately. The reading part is because i have missed that a lot. And i can always set new goals when i accomplish one, three is more than enough for now! I am excited about it and will really work on them.

zaterdag 4 juli 2009

So excited!

I am so excited! Tomorrow morning i am leaving for Paris for a week!! First I will be attending an international conference on gerontology and geriatrics and from thursday afternoon i will have a short vacation! The boyfriend will come to Paris on thursday as well, so we can have a romantic long weekend in Paris :D

I am a little nervous for the conference, because i will be doing a poster presentation there about my research. But i am confident that everything will work out just fine.

I am off to bed now. Have a long day ahead of me. 'Till next week!

donderdag 2 juli 2009

Escaping zuccini

It is so hot right now! Today i left work early because i finally finished my poster for the conference so i deserved some rest. i spent the rest of the afternoon in the park just chilling and napping a bit. It was way too hot in the house or at the balcony so in the park underneath a tree was my best option.

Yesterday was a long day again. A lot of work and after that i went to the gym for my body combat class. It was fun, and boy was i sweaty!
Tomorrow i am going to take it easy again. I have to go to work to pick up the poster at the copy shop and finish some stuff, including packing my stuff because they will move everything while i am in Paris. Someone will join us so we have to rearrange in order to be able to fit everybody on our floor at the university.

Well, nothing much to talk about today. It is way too hot to sit behind the computer anyway, and my brain feels empty, i think it melted...

Oh! I know. The other day the boyfriend made a really fun picture of one of the cats sleeping on the couch:

woensdag 1 juli 2009

Soooo tired

Yesterday was such an exhausting day! The boyfriend did not want to sleep and kept talking and tossing and turning, keeping me awake too. So i woke up feeling awful. At work it was fun, we had our guest and in the afternoon we had a meeting with him and some former colleagues of another research institute. After that we went to have dinner. The weather was very good so we could sit outside to eat, i always enjoy that very much! by the time i got home i was sooo tired. Now i have to go to work again, and its going to be a long day because i have to finish the most of my poster preparations so i can send it to the copyshop tomorrow morning latest. That way i will be sure to actually have the poster to take it to the conference.