Here there be dragons...

"I'm telling you stories. Trust me." - Winterson

Grace, drama, flexibility... I see no way in which this can go wrong.

So I started a new stretching routine today.   While in most items, I will consistently pick an absolutely ridiculous challenge every time I decide to do something, this is the one area I don't generally do that.  I am one of the world's least flexible people.  I have been since I was a kid.  Like I can't even pretend "I could do that when I was 10" cause I couldn't.   πŸ˜‚ 

Okay so before the move, I had started a new ab workout that was *awesome*.  Insanely difficult (like I almost always stuck to level 1 out of 3 -- and 3 involves things like handstand pushups?!?!), but awesome.   Was definitely getting results super fast.

But then we moved and things kinda fell apart.  And in the new house, I really didn't have anywhere to work out.  But *finally* I've set up space again, so excuses are over.  Figured I'd start abs over from day 1 (it's a 30 day program), but the same group recently published a new workout that's stretching.  Same thing, 10 minutes per day.

Alright, says me, I know I desperately need to do some stretching.  I like their other program.  This one is on sale.  Maybe worth a try.  Sure why not?

So the first warning sign should've been that it's not the same coach.  One woman does all their other programs (strength based) but this one, flexibility, they hired sisters who work together in Cirque du Soleil.  lol I see no way in which this can go wrong.  But they have one demonstrating "level 1" so maybe?  

And you know, at first it was great.  But then there was one move that I was like wtf?!?!  And when I finally figured out what they were doing and tried to put my body in that same position...  lol well suffice to say I wasn't sure I was going to be able to untangle my body after.  

I'm not convinced I was meant to be a pretzel! Ow ;)

There were a few times I just laughed - like there is ZERO possibility my body will ever go in that direction.   One was sitting down, extend one leg one direction, and "point the other knee the opposite direction".   

It doesn't look like this when I do it.

Lol that is NEVER going to happen.  BUT - I could do the same exercise, just my knee pointed perpendicular *g*.  So unlike some other exercise routines where I literally couldn't do the exercise, these ones I can do, just lacking some range of movement, grace, and drama that the demo ladies demonstrated. The one that really made me laugh had to do with bending at the waist and "try to make sure your head is on the ground, if that's really easy you can . . . "  I literally laughed out loud.  Like I'm over here proud that I can *touch* the ground.  My head is nowhere near it.

Yeah no.

BUT - I have to say this is the first stretching routine that I was never bored in.  I actually enjoyed doing it and I was surprised when it ended.  So this is just Day 1.  We'll see how it goes, but a stronger start that I expected.  We shall see ;)








Somehow the MBA didn't deign to take a break just so I could move ;-P

So this term is Strategic Management and Artificial Intelligence.  Two of the topics I was most looking forward to.  

Strategic Mgmt is okay, but imo would've been better at the start of the MBA adventure as an overview/introduction since most of the topics have already been covered in other courses.  Also, I'm pretty annoyed that one of the assessment criteria is to write and respond to a forum post.  Which, in itself is a giant waste of time, but made worse by the fact that the forum posts are all on the same case study.  Super boring and very little to respond to.  AND they still require academic sources etc so not even an opinion piece.  Definitely not a good use of my time or learning.  If they want us to write a case study response, include it in the paper.  Mutter mutter mutter.

AI I'm finding fascinating, although the prof is incredibly dry.  Disappointing as until this term, the person who taught it was amazing (I was lucky to have him for HR).  I'm enjoying the modules and the learning, but omg classes are just dude reading ppts.  No discussion, no engagement...  Admittedly I have very little to contribute to discussion on this topic, but I was hoping to learn from those that do :)

Honestly, so glad I accelerated this program, as I'm just done.   But close enough that I can see the actual end, so it's all good.   Arguably, if I weren't doing it at such an insane pace, maybe I wouldn't have burned out so fast, but either way...   I have these two classes and then the thesis -- which doesn't appear to really be a thesis, but we'll see.

Happy birthday to me :)

Today was an early start due to things happening in the house that couldn't be scheduled any other time, BUT Chris dealt with all of that, so instead of sleeping in, I started my day with a lovely long bubble bath :)    Idk why, but to me the start of day bubble bath always feels like an amazing indulgence.  

After that, we went on a search for a birthday cake (strawberry shortcake for the win!) and then headed to Nickel Beach for a bit.  It was not exactly what either of us were expecting -- there was a $20 entry fee for starters, and then people drove right on the beach and parked facing the water where they would unpack their stuff.  No vendors of any sort (not even COVID related, just in general), which - if we'd known - we would've brought a cooler with some drinks and snacks.  But otherwise it was good -- water is shallow a long way out and all sand, no rocks, so that was lovely.  And the waves were turned on which was lovely to listen to (when people weren't playing their car stereos that is).   COVID restrictions still in place, so while there was a consistent line of people it definitely was not packed and the groups were quite social distanced.  I was still sort of shocked at how busy it was on a random Thursday, but yeah - fairly lovely way to spend the day.  At one point I even fell asleep on the beach :)   We didn't stay all that long -- C isn't much of a beach person, and the lack of food and beverage made it less fun as lunch time fell into the past.  But in the end just as well judging by how red my skin is now!  lol I was clearly not as careful as I often am with sunscreen since it is blatantly obvious where I screened and where I did not.

A fairly perfect way to spend the day

When we got home we changed and headed to neighbourhood taco night.  lol I'm not even kidding.  This definitely wouldn't have been my first choice for a bday dinner, but the woman who hosts invited us once before and we didn't make it, so when earlier this week she said she was having another one "on Thursday", I said we'd be there -- without cluing in that Thursday = bday.   Anyways - unlike the last neighbourhood thing, I actually had quite a good time at this one.  Even if we left about the same time the kids got banished.  lol apparently they send the kids in about 8:00 and then the adult party begins, but we went home for cake about then.  I'm sure there'll be another one.  It seems she does them every couple weeks (this is one of the people Tucker and I often see on our walks so I talk to her most days).   This woman has EIGHT kids?!?!  And most of the neighbourhood kids hanging out there as well as a result.  I can't even imagine.  But they were all well behaved, and the eldest (I'm guessing 16ish?) was lovely to talk to.  But yeah - I'm in awe of this woman's energy level; she never stopped.

We, however, definitely stopped :)  Home to super-yummy cake and just relaxed for the rest of the day.  Nothing super productive for sure, but bdays aren't about productivity.

Friends, ponies, and sunshine :)

R's text the other day: "want to go hacking on Sat?"  Yes, yes I do.  πŸ˜‚   Like zero hesitation, that is absolutely the best idea I've heard in ages.   lol wow it's been way too long, both for the social aspect and the pony aspect.

Arrange meeting time, weather is perfect - like 28 and sunny.  Amazing.  Even just getting dressed to go -- putting on riding pants made me feel so right.  Like wtf?  Riding pants are the least attractive most uncomfortable things ever...  But they've been a part of my life since I was in single digits so, I guess they're the clothing equivalent of comfort food ;-P   Unrelated - I was awfully glad they still FIT given the amount of recently consumed comfort food *g*   I didn't try the boots - partially cause they haven't moved here yet and partially cause... I don't want to know ;)   Paddock boots and half chaps for the win.

So yeah - was a little discombobulated when I got there as I don't know the barn or where stuff lives or any of the people, but R was well into having both ponies already tacked up (luxury!) so I really didn't have much to do...

Proof!  lol R snapped this completely unbeknownst
to me while we were on our adventure.

But yeah - went for a perfect hack in amazing weather wandering around areas I don't know at all and getting caught up :)  The year that wasn't definitely taught me how much I miss my friends when I don't see them for too long.  lol I don't necessarily notice at the time, but then when I do get to see them it's like yes, that.  That is what was missing.

Anyways - was just a lovely break from reality.   And THEN, I got to go to my parents place to meet Coco!  Mum's new puppy :)   Coco is from the same breeders as Bailey, and came home today.

Introducing Coco :)

Next Saturday will be term papers.  Far less fun somehow ;-P

Where ships climb the mountain

Apparently it's actually a figure 8 -- of almost 200km if you do the full thing!

So one of the selling features of the house was the trails nearby...  I've now had a few experiences with these ;)

The entrance to the trail system is about a km away.  Not bad, but not super ideal either.  And it appears to be a "there and back again" kind of trail, which is not usually my preference.   But still, better than nothing.

So my first day I headed out and randomly picked a direction.   I immediately noticed a loud noise -- less ideal but sobeit.  The trail itself was lovely - paved and wide.  Would be good for cycling.  Walk a very short distance and find the source of the noise, what appears to be a power plant.  Less appealing.  But, the moment I passed it, no more noise.   Why?   Well the whole trail appears to be a wind tunnel.  lol so awesome for controlling noise pollution, but made me think maybe a bike would be less ideal as peddling would be *very* hard.   

The trail is gorgeous

I wandered a km or so and then found a path off to the side -- looked to be a quad or maybe dirt bike trail? Idk, but it also looked like it looped around so of course I followed it.  Right.  πŸ˜‚   Well it *did* loop back around almost at the beginning of where I started so that was lovely.   However, it would be completely inappropriate for a bike (unmotorized) and was a challenge on foot.  Some very kind person had dropped a tree across the biggest mud / water challenge that I was able to traverse, but suffice to say there was lots of ducking, climbing, and traversing to get through it.   Honestly would've been entertaining if not for the attack-mosquitos!  I'll tell you - when I suddenly heard the power plant again, I was pretty pleased cause it meant I was just about out of my adventure trail!

2nd path was right on the water

Okay so the next time, also on foot, I turned the other direction.  This one also had a wind tunnel and no apparent side trails, but was also a prettier straight line (right on the canal).  It led to Lock 7 - which is apparently a *thing* in Thorold.  The trail continued well past there, but once I went there I saw signs for downtown, and decided since I knew how to get home from there, I'd go that way instead.  It spit me out the opposite end of town from where I was expecting, showing that I'm still very disoriented here!   But it did make for a lovely walk loop that did not involve "there and back again" so I was pleased about that.

Misc impressive graffiti 

THEN, on my last day of vacation, we got our bikes usable and went for a ride.  This was awesome.  We went the first direction again and after about 10k, the trail suddenly catches a ride on a ferry?!?!   

Seriously - you ring the triangle to summon the ferry...

... and the ferry arrives.
I couldn't make this up if I tried ;)

Yup, apparently in the 70s a ship hit the bridge and instead of rebuilding it, insurance paid for a ferry to run - for 40 years...   For those doing the math, yup - that contract is up.   So the city took it over instead.  There's a pub and an ice cream booth one the other side, aptly named Bridge 12.  πŸ˜‚   So yeah - really enjoyed that.

Look how many bikes are parked outside here!

But then the ride back...   You see, I didn't make that title up...  "Where the ships climb the mountain" is Thorold's thing.   Definitely catchy and moderately interesting.  But the piece that didn't register is that means Thorold is at the top of the mountain (with Lake Ontario at the bottom on one side and Lake Erie at the bottom on the other.   Water may not always be south anymore, but it's definitely still down!)    But what that means for cycling is that going away from home is fast, easy, and downhill.  Coming home once you're exhausted is ALWAYS going to be uphill.  No matter which way you chose to leave.  *sigh*   Ah well, at least I should get fit out of all this.


I have no idea why there's a polar bear here,
but figured he'd fit just as well in this blog :)


I may have misread our mythological creature.

So our unicorn clearly has some faerie blood.   And not the cute Disney fairy; the traditional, slightly horrifyingly, devilish faerie.   

Or maybe our unicorn just has a dubious companion...

For those just joining in (seriously - where did you come from?  How did you land here of all the blogs?), we recently moved.   The new house was deemed a unicorn because it was both A - new (Chris' preference) and B - had a large yard (my preference).  Since they don't tend to make new houses with large yards everywhere, it must be magic.  Right?

Perhaps.  But magic is not always used for good.

So let's play the unicorn vs faerie game...

Unicorn - new house!  woohoo!  It's only a year old!

Faerie - new house needs new floors.   Faerie squared - vents for new floors "will be in in a week" -- 3 weeks ago.   Which means we have 80% of each room done but can neither finish it nor unpack nor move furniture into the right places.

Faerie the second (faeries are smaller than unicorns) - the front door is randomly smaller than every other front door ever invented?!?!   Huge credit to our fridge delivery people who defied the laws of physics to get the fridge that measured bigger than the door, through said door, without significant disassembling.

Unicorn - huge yard!

Faerie - that we can't fence until the builder finishes their grading (that will be....?   Somewhere between Oct and next year according to the neighbour) AND the city assumes the property (which could take up to 5 years?!?!).   Now that's all very dramatic, but talking to the random people who were inspecting our back yard this afternoon, it looks like this is already in process.  The city has deemed their grading insufficient so they have to dig up some of the grass, put down more dirt, have the city review it, replace the grass, city review again.  I believe that last piece is when the city assumes the property (at which point, we can fence) and it seems like it'll be in the weeks or months timeline rather than years; however, that's still TBC.  So we shall see.

Faerie the second - the mosquitos are winning the war!   There's a vacant lot diagonally behind us with ALL the long grass and standing water, a pond next to them, and wetlands across the street.  The end result is mosquitos.  ALL the mosquitos.  Neighbours on both sides have said worse this year than last (lot is newly vacant) so we're hoping once that gets under control our mosquito problem should lessen.   We've also invested in an outdoor mosquito killer so we'll see if that helps.

Unicorn - fiber run right to the house!

Faerie - this is really a junior faerie in that the wiring is very short and limiting to where we can put our box.  Mostly though, this one is all unicorn.  We have better internet now than we've had anywhere.

Unicorn - I have an AMAZING bath tub.  It's almost exactly the right size, has perfectly located arm-rests, and the back slopes just enough that I read for over an hour there the other night.

Faerie - the tub faucet is on the side.  Np right?  Except it means while the water is running, it consistently splashes on the book :(    

Faerie the second - the washrooms have no drawers?!?!  Like how do you put in a vanity with no drawers.  And no light in the master shower (that's not glass, so kinda impressively cave-like - do fairies like caves?).  I've figured out how to live without drawers thanks to baskets and other such concepts, but meh.   We tried one light for the shower that didn't work, but the search continues...

Unicorn - our AC is amazing!

Faerie - it is also very loud :(   I don't think I've slept through the night yet.

Unicorn - living in the middle of nowhere, parking is easily available and either free or laughably cheap ($1.75/h lol or $100 for a monthly pass).

Faerie - a frustrating number of businesses (like actual businesses with store fronts even) are cash only.  C is fine with this but it drives me insane.  I really love not needing anything other than my phone to live my life.   Even cards are old-school.   Cash?  It's archaic, makes my bookkeeping exponentially more difficult, doesn't earn me any points or cash-back, and kinda gross physically.  So yeah - I'm learning what stores I can give my business to and which ones I can't.

Unicorn - a ridiculous number of pizza places to choose from (and tonight's had a marvellous invention of half pizza / half garlic bread.   Amazing).

Faerie - very few other food options.   There are a disproportionate number of hair places?!?!  Maybe some of them could be converted into other food.   We DID find *really* good donuts though, so that's a unicorn all in itself.  I see no problem with living off pizza and donuts. ;-P

Unicorn - everybody seems to be super friendly.

Faerie - every single person we've met has asked C what he does.  Not one has asked me.  In many ways this town is several decades in the past.

Unicorn - amazing cycling trails (this'll get its own post)

Faerie - everywhere is downhill from here, which means cycling home when tired is *always* uphill.

So yeah - I suspect our unicorn has some faerie blood...   All first world frustrations for sure, potentially of the slightly mischievous magical creature variety.  

Canada Day Socializing

You know you live in a small town when...

So in true small-town experience, we came home the other day to find an invite to a Canada Day BBQ stuck to our door.  We decided we should go as we've yet to really meet anybody.  It was an interesting experience.  lol while we might wander by one again, I definitely don't think we'd be seeking it out ;-P   Nice enough people for sure, but not necessarily ones we wanted to spend a ton of time with.

However, after that, for the first time in WAY too long (thanks Covid) we got to go spend time with people we actually DO enjoy seeing :)   Since C invited us and several others to mutual friends' place for a bbq *g*   Fortunately they were okay with that.  I haven't laughed that hard in a very long time.  Was a really good break from doing anything remotely productive.

And yes - both gatherings followed current rules, we were definitely outside and nowhere near 25 people at either.  Win.  But yeah - no social activities for more than a year, followed by two in one day?!?!  I feel like that could've been spread out a little *g*

The moving games continue

So we've been "small towned" (yes it's a verb) a few times since being here...   For instance, Chris and I tried a local pub today and when we sat down on the patio, the waitress came right away to ask what we wanted...   "Well, what do you have?"  "Oh!  Would you like a menu?"  lol.  Suffice to say, nobody else on the patio needed a menu, and most were being addressed by name.   Chris also got it in the convenience store the other day -- "I haven't seen you before, did you just move in?" lol.  I haven't been in there yet. We'll see...

The "downtown" is very cute.  Tiny, but picturesque.

You may remember from a previous post that we had to pull up the weed-infused carpet and attempt to get hardwood down.  Chris managed to get the master done (or done enough -- we still don't have the floor vents) so that we could set up a bed when we moved in.   This was an entirely new experience.  Why?  Well because we went with an Endy mattress.   

For those not in the loop - this comes rolled up in a box, weighing less than 100 lbs.  


It comes with these instructions



So we unroll...


It made a hissing sound as we opened the package...


And in less time than you'd expect, we had an actual mattress. 

As to the mattress itself?  Plus side - it's super non-motion sensitive.  Remember those bowling ball mattress commercials?  Way better than that.  I'm pretty sure Bailey could be having zoomies tearing around the bed and you wouldn't feel a thing sitting on the other side.   Down side - it's quite firm.  I think C likes it, but I find it too hard, esp when sleeping on my side.  Suspect all it needs is a pillow top though and then it'd be excellent.   It's also not nearly as thick as previous mattresses.  That's neither plus nor minus (well - for Tucker it's a huge plus), just a random fact.

So good to go right?  We have a floor and a mattress, what more do we need?   Wait - did you see those windows???  And did I mention, we live at the end of the street?

Notice the streetlight?  Yeah - shines right in our window...

So not only is there a streetlight right outside, but every car coming toward us lights up the room, AND if we have lights on, we give a show to anybody on the street.  Less good.   But for reasons I don't entirely understand, even Ikea was sold out of curtain rods?!?!   And Amazon was going to be a couple days.  *sigh*.  So what did we have?

Flooring boxes for the win!

lol it's the opposite of classy (or classy with a capital K), but it was surprisingly effective.

Fast-forward a couple days for blackout curtains and finally a good-night's sleep!

All the rest of our furniture is currently in one room until the flooring is done, making unpacking reasonably impossible...  But we'll get there.  C has been flooring on super-speed -- has both our offices as done as possible so far.  Would be helpful if the pieces we're waiting for would actually come in ;)   Meanwhile I've been unpacking the rest of the house -- trying to make the bathrooms and the kitchen usable...

Other randomness -- Amazon takes much longer to get here :(   BUT, our internet is awesome?!?!  πŸ˜‚  I guess you need something to do when you live in the middle of nowhere.   I've also had to wait for a ship passing by for the first time now.  I will admit they're quite impressive.


Our slightly evil unicorn...

So it's possible our unicorn has a slightly evil side. 


Yeah, just like that...

Let's see...  Where last we left it, we had purchased new hardwood flooring for the upstairs since the carpet is thoroughly weed-soaked and the oder...  Well rather overwhelming.

Well after purchasing, step one is to get said hardwood to the house.  Rented a U-haul for that adventure.  Driving was less than fun -- I hate not being able to see out the side, and while the double-mirrors did help to ensure there was nobody in my blindspot, it made it impossible to tell how close somebody really was (top mirror showed them way too close and bottom mirror showed them way too far away), which made me really glad I wasn't driving during rush hour cause I basically waited till there were no cars before changing lanes.  Not such an option most of the time.

Our new floor!

Ah well, suffice to say I got to the store, and the hardwood was loaded quickly thanks to a forklift.  Awesome.  Get to the house and time to unload...  The only issue?  I can *barely* lift one box.   We have 43 boxes.  Frig.  So I managed to get three boxes upstairs before my body told me I would very strongly regret trying to move another one.  My solution was going to be to open the boxes and carry portions at a time.  Chris' solution was that he would carry all the boxes.  And he was being successful, so I switched to carrying moving boxes, and when those were finished, carrying carpet and sub-carpet out of the house while he was carrying boxes in.  Every once in a while my muscles would feel okay so I'd try another box.  End total?  I think I moved all of 6 and C moved all the rest.

So much for move in ready

But the carpet was out and the hardwood in.  Win.  Repurposed the U-haul to get the carpet to the dump and good to go.  Then we had a few days of pulling up tacks and staples and other fun stuff.   Today we primed the floor to try to make sure the smell is cancelled permanently.   Which, hopefully will be effective, but really?  Painting the floor that you're going to cover forever?   I really wish I could think of something brilliant to write for whoever one day pulls up the hardwood ;)   Alas, my genius has been exhausted by the degree of BS required for term papers.

Painting the room before putting hardwood on top
is a very evil-unicorn thing to require.

So tomorrow the frantic installation of hardwood begins in a desperate hope to have somewhere to put furniture when the movers come on Tuesday.  Wish us luck!

Our super-fancy dinner.  
I was pretty proud of the pillow seats ;)

But... Water is always south. Isn't it?

There are lots of animals that learn at a very young age how to find food; today I learned tech can too πŸ˜‚ 

So I had Mum's car at the new house (like really new, we've owned it since lunch time).   Mum's car rather than mine because it has significantly more space in it for the transporting of stuff.  All good except I know neither the car, nor the location, and being not my car it is, reasonably, not stocked with my stuff.

Now when I got to the house it said I had about 50km of gas left...  Which means not enough to get home. But that's okay - lots of gas between here and there; C and I were even at a gas station not far away when we were looking at houses.

Spend the afternoon cleaning, cause the house is a disaster.  I don't get how they managed to get it SO bad in only a year.  And am moderately amused that apparently there was one roommate not like the others -- the room that will be my office is the only room in the house w a lock on the door AND also the only room that's clean and smoke-free.  But the rest of the house.  Ugh.

And - my phone was quickly draining battery, both cause I was using it to play music and cause it was searching for cell signal all day.   Nbd - I'd brought charge cable.  Plug in and continue working away.

Time to go home.  Phone is essentially dead.  Hmmm less than good.  Turns out the plug wasn't working.  For move-in ready, this house is requiring an awful lot of work :(    C went down and did some magic in the basement and the plug started again.  Alas, too late for my poor phone.

Get in car and of course none of my chargers are with me.  However, Mum had a few!  Win :)   Except that when I plugged in, all it did was connect me to the car, not actually feed my phone any power :(   Fail.  And somehow the car is now down to 40km left?  πŸ€·‍♀️   

So C's directions on how to get to gas "take either the first or the second road and it's down there."   Uh right.  That's sure to end well πŸ˜‚   The first was a piddly little street so I took the second.  I realized pretty quickly it wasn't the right one, but seemed to be a grid-type setup, so figured I'd be able to loop back at top.  Alas, that was incorrect.  I *did*, however, find myself at the highway so I figured I'd hop on and there would be gas somewhere along the way...   But, uh, north or south?  None of the signs had locations listed.  Fail.  Well we turned away from the water so therefore new town is north of the highway I want to end up on, so let's head south...

Yup, realized pretty quickly that was wrong too.   Fail.   Also, maybe I should look up my new home on an actual map πŸ˜‚   Since I clearly have no idea where it actually is.  My whole life the water has been south, but occurs to me out there it's actually north.  Damn Golden Horseshoe.  And that just might be too much for my little brain.   So now I'm on a road that I can't just pull over to the side to ask my rapidly-dying phone for help.  And I'm down to 30kms left of gas.  hmmmm.

For those not from around here, I've always lived on top of the water ;) Even when not in Ontario.  
Suffice to say, new house is below the water...

And then the nav/entertainment system goes black.  White words flash up: "You're almost out of gas!"   Well gee thanks Car.  Super-helpful.   The loud ding and big orange gas light on the dash also told me that.  I get that you're hungry, but I'm working on it.

But then...  Then Car's self-preservation kicked in.  "Would you like directions to a near-by gas station?"

Why yes, yes I would. 

She offered me several options and I went w the closest brand I recognized πŸ˜‚    The trip there took me through a tunnel under the canal, which was somewhat fascinating in that it was torrential rain out, so coming out of the tunnel it looked like cars were being swallowed by a wall of white.   But other than that, Car quickly and accurately led me to gas.   Win.

And since my phone was dying, I took the time to program home into Car as well, and let her figure out how to get me back to the highway (over a bridge this time) and pointed the right direction πŸ˜‚.  That's usually either Alexa or Siri's job (depending whether I want Spanish and reliable or English and dodgy) but both were on time-out due to dying phone...

So Car for the win today.  That is definitely the best random use of technology I've seen lately.  My car certainly doesn't offer that ;-P   And yes, she even got me home correctly.


Just one more thing...

So today was a Day.  Aren't they all? you may ask...  No, you see everyday is a day.  This was a Day, with a capital D.   It's an entirely different beast.

I woke up stupidly early, which I bitterly resent, especially on the weekend.  lol but the end result is that I got some work done on my paper and went for a walk all before I'd planned to get up.  We had planned for our house walkthrough at 10:45 this morning.   This is the "right before closing, check all the things work" walkthrough.   Now we've moved a few too many times over the last few years so we're used to these.   Walk around, check the water and appliances work, etc.

Driving out, all good.  Chris points out the craziness at the Home Depot - people lined up around the building.  So glad we didn't have to go to a store today.  Ontario just started reopening yesterday; it's the first time in ages stores have been an option and they're at limited capacity.

So when we got there, it wasn't a promising beginning with doggy bags left next to the front porch *sigh* - esp questionable as it seems they didn't actually have pets.  But okay.  Go in and there's a slight oder.  hmmmm.  And otherwise things are pretty dirty - for a house that's only a year old, the previous inhabitants managed to make a good mess of it.  

But sobeit, we start walking through and things are working.  The dishwasher was a bit of a mystery, but we got it working.  Chris saw the neighbour kid out mowing his lawn, and went and offered him $40 to do ours too ;)  Win.  Neighbour kid's mum was thrilled with the whole situation.  So not a bad start.

Then we ventured upstairs.  *sigh*   Remember that faint oder when we first entered?  Well from the best we can tell, there was a substantial amount of marijuana being smoked in the house *sigh*.  And on top of it, not only left-over smoke oder, but also multiple burns in the carpet and we're reasonably certain someone dumped their bong water on the landing.   So awesome.

Now "hardwood floor upstairs" was on our list of things to do some day, but super low on the priority list. Like maybe end of the decade?   What we had thought just required a carpet clean was going to be a much bigger challenge.

Fortunately the two rooms we were planning to use as offices were unburned.  The worst was in the master bedroom.  So we'd pretty much decided we'd apply the ostrich method (as in head-in-the-sand), and use an area rug to cover the worst of it and ignore it till future us could afford to deal with it.   When our amazing realtor volunteered to pay for the hardwood?!?!  She threw out a number and... wow.   So while on a quick google of costs I didn't think it'd cover it, it'd certainly do at least 50% if we were careful with what we picked.

Alright, so off to Home Depot...  Right - remember that comment about not needing to go to a store?  Much less Home Depot?   Right.  Hindsight's an ass.   We get to the closest Home Depot and the line up is insane *sigh*.   Okay, figure we'll go home and hit up another one after dinner when hopefully most people will have gone home.  But on the way home, we'd stop at a few flooring stores on the way.   Well the first one said they had no stock of anything and were booking six weeks out at best.  Not helpful.

Continue our trek and the next one was accidental -- we found it while on the way to a third one.  And it had a few options of hardwood that was not only in stock, but end of the line, so significantly reduced price.  Like 65% reduced.  Which brought it into the range our realtor had offered.  Amazing!   The only one we loved though, they didn't have enough left.  Sad :(

So we continued our journey.  The store C had been targeting was...  less successful.  Sales people were seriously meh and they didn't have anything we particularly liked and nothing in a price range we could possibly make happen.   Alright...  Continue on our way and hit up a Lowes that had essentially no line to get in, but all their product was both more expensive and not as nice as what the previous store had.  

We debated briefly and decided it was silly to pass on a good thing, so went back and ordered the hardwood.  So exciting news - we'll have new hardwood.  Less exciting - it can't be picked up till next week :(   Booo.   But we'll figure it out.

So okay - but if we're putting down hardwood, we need various other things to go with it.  Which means that Home Depot run still needs to happen.   We decided to save that for after dinner, and that ended up being a win.  We were able to go in with no line and collect the various things that had been on the list.  So that's all good.

But suffice to say the afternoon of paper-writing that was the original plan, most definitely did not happen.

All first world problems for sure, but just always that One. More. Thing.

Who said unicorns don't exist?

As some of you may recall, Chris and I moved in with my parents last March when COVID hit and relieved us of one of our incomes.  We decided to take the opportunity for both of us to go back to school -- Chris to teacher's college and me into an MBA program.

So the plan was to finish both these things (target November and October respectively), and give Chris time to find a full-time job.  Meanwhile, I would look for a remote job that would let me not have to commute to the GTA.  And once all those pieces aligned we would move -- sometime between next fall and next spring.

Right.  You're not new here ;-P

So first of all, Chris got his job months before finishing school.  He was only guaranteed part-time though, so not quite solid enough to commit to moving to that area.  But still, well ahead of what we expected.  Now I was interviewing for a job that was "just a job" but would've given me that remote position, when I was offered a non-remote job that had a high potential I would love.  Yeah, I went with that one.  Job satisfaction for the win.  Now, pre-COVID, this role would've been 100% in-office, non-negotiable.  However, since everybody's been remote more than a year, polices are changing.  It's looking like I'll have to go in either 2x/month and 2x/week.  I feel I have a strong case for the former, but if my boss really wants people in the office...  Well at least it's only 2x/week.

So to put the timing in perspective:

  • Our house money is tied up in GICs till Sept;
  • Chris is likely to have full-time work lined up for Sept (we should find out next week);
  • I'm *hoping* for two days / wk in office -- I should find out about that next week as well.
Now with 90 days being a standard house closing, one would think that assuming Chris does get his ft offer, and I get confirmation that I don't need to be in the office all the time, we could potentially start looking for a new house in June...

As to the house...  Honestly, I was really dreading the search.  I had three priorities: a big yard with privacy, a bathtub (or the ability to put one in), and a space for an office.   In an ideal world, I'd also prefer a house with personality.  I'm not so much a cookie-cutter kinda person.  But that was not a "must have".  Chris had a very long list, but the vast majority of it would be met by purchasing a new house (although he was theoretically open to a house more than 100 yrs old, it was going to be very hard to find one of those that would meet his many other criteria).  The problem, of course, is that they don't put new houses on big properties anymore.  So this could potentially be a very long search.

And then Chris did the impossible...  He found our unicorn.  We weren't even 'officially' looking.  More just seeing what was out there in our price range to see how much we were going to have to negotiate or reconsider our shopping criteria.  So on Saturday of the May 24 weekend, he sends me a few links of possible houses (before I woke up - Saturday ams are for sacred sleep).  So when I woke up and was mindlessly browsing I clicked through them.  There was one I really strongly disliked; of the others, nothing particularly stuck out but nothing that would make me hate my life either.  So okay.  

But Chris tells me he *really* likes the last one.   Well okay, if you like it that much, let's go see it.  And while we're out there we may as well check out the other ones on the list and the ones I'd found the other day.  So we tag our realtor (who helped with the last purchase and sale) and ask if she's up for a road trip.  She was busy on Sunday but could do Monday.  Perfect.  Send her the list and let her do the organizing.

Now keep in mind, this is 1-2 weeks before we know if Chris has FT work, and 1-2 weeks before we know what my commute is going to be.  And, well, we both know we don't window shop well.  If we're going to look, there's a very good chance we're going to purchase.

So on our road trip, the first couple houses were definite "no"s.  They were in St Catherine's, and when we moved to Thorold (which neither of us know anything about) there was a definite shift in neighbourhood and we had a few strong possibilities.  Not strong enough to bump up our timeline by months, but at least to give me hope that one day we'd find something.   The house I really didn't like was even worse in real life, so that was a bit of a relief ;).

Then we got to the one Chris was waiting for.  And while it doesn't have the character I might've liked, it wasn't a sad box either.  And it's a new subdivision, but the houses aren't super cramped on top of each other.  So first glance is positive.  The downstairs is okay...  Nothing spectacular, but nothing wrong with it.  It'd certainly suit our needs.  Connected garage is very civilized.  And the basement was a HUGE space.  Unfinished, but future potential for sure.  And a home for the gym and my Oculus.


But upstairs...   The master is huge and the ensuite has a lovely soaker tub (win! - that wasn't in the pictures, so I was concerned), and good sized rooms for both C and I to have our own offices looking over the back yard.

That back yard.  A - it's a great size (I could have a pool some day!), and B - it doesn't back on anything?!?!   I mean there's a road there, but across the road is protected wetlands, so what would be my office has an amazing view.  Esp if we planted some trees along the back fence that over time would block the view of the road...   hmmmm - potential ;)  

This is the view from the living room; 
it's even better from the office

And did I mention that yard?!?!  One of two in the subdivision that have good yards.  AND it gets sun all day.  Amazing.

Now it's really in the middle of nowhere...  But apparently there are some good trails, so at least Sasha and I would have somewhere to adventure.  

So we go look at the last house on the list and it was awful.  Alright then...   Go back to the unicorn.  Yup, really is a unicorn.  In the mean time, our realtor was feeling out the other agent...  Yeah - they're expecting a bidding war and figure it'll go $150k over asking.  Frig.   Did I mention it was already at the top of our budget...?  Ugh.

But...  Unicorn.

So we drive home and think about it a bit.  The house is empty atm, so it suggests they'd like a quick sale (tricky with our $ tied up till Sept).  Okay well what can we do...  We could put the deposit on the line of credit, but to get the house before it goes to a battle, we probably need to offer a quick close.   Well thanks to both sets of amazing parents we were able too borrow the money for the downpayment until our money frees up - which meant we could, technically, close whenever...

May as well at least try...  Put in a strong offer, although likely well under what they think they *might* get, but with a three-week close, no conditions, and a super-quick expiry.  The realtors went back and forth a bit and they wrote it back at a price we agreed to.  Ran a few things past the lawyer and by EOD Tues, the deal was done.

And then there's the whole moving thing...  So both of us are in school and C has a big exam mid-July...  Knowing what my schedule is like, my options are to move the wk of June 20th (with no stress - I'm off school that week), or July 15 (more stress - 2 papers hanging over my head but that's the longest break between papers), or mid Aug.   Really didn't want to wait till Aug if we bought the house in June soooo....

Of course we're doing the super-speed one.  Internet and fencing people are coming the day after we take possession (which I've booked off work to go deal w stuff).  Hopefully will hear from the movers tomorrow about if they can do the date we'd like for the actual move.

And if the world is good, this'll be the last move for a very long time.   A few more weeks of chaos followed by a couple more months of the painful school and work combo.  And then life becomes dramatically calmer.  Until I find the next thing ;)

VR HIIT

So the boxing program I was doing released a new HIIT program.  I've been curious about it for a while and finally got to try it today.   A few things, first - I was wondering how good a workout it was likely to be?  I've been enjoying my VR Fitness journey, but other than the bike games, I haven't found any program that I feel I consistently get a good workout from (in a reasonable amount of time.  I don't have several hours a day for this).  And second - I usually hate HIIT with a passion.  Could they make it fun?

Ok step one - could they make it a good workout?  Short answer - yes.  Definitely.   I did the 7 minute beginner level and I would say the first 2 minutes were figuring out wtf was going on.  So in the 5 min workout remaining, I got my heart rate up to the top of cardio level and did many many squats ;)  If I had done a harder level, a longer level, or even known what I was doing at the beginning, I could likely have gotten into the high zone with no difficulty.

Now is it fun?  Moderately.  One of the things I hate about HIIT is how repetitive it is.  You do something hard, then you do it again.  I'm up for almost anything - once.  Repeating it though...  Questionable.  Repeating it multiple times?  No interest.  This is why weightlifting has never been my thing.   This has that same repetitiveness.  It was essentially two exercises that were done together and repeated four times. Now - those exercises were entertaining - punching things and making them shatter essentially.  The high ones were quite a stretch so they encouraged a fair amount of movement, while the low ones required a decent squat.   However, while repeating things is boring, I found I was trying to beat my last score each time which is super motivating.   The software would be improved (imo) by having a tracker of your previous score or extra points for beating it on subsequent rounds.

The one significant frustration I had was that a few times the targets just disappeared.  Which is a speed round (which HIIT generally is) this was SUPER frustrating.  Not only did it throw off my rhythm, but it also impacted my score.  I only got to level nine instead of level ten - 100% because this happened on multiple occasions.  So yeah.  I'll try again tomorrow - that could definitely have been an internet blip or something.  But if it's a regular occurrence, I'm out.

I'm starting to appreciate C's frustration when
his game glitches at inopportune moments

I've seen other complaints about the music -- honestly, I had no issue with this.  I didn't even notice what was playing.  In the boxing or dance options I'd say it's more important, but in HIIT -- where speed is of the essence -- I legitimately don't even notice the music.

I'm looking forward to playing again tomorrow - I'm going to pick a higher and longer level and give it a solid go.  Looking to see what variety there is in the exercises and how significant a workout it gives me.  And hopefully no glitching.  

Grade 4 Science

So this evening I tried a "shower steamer" for the first time -- which, from what I can tell is really just a tiny bath bomb, made for the shower.  And honestly, was not super impressed.   But what DID amuse me is that when I was done said shower and it was still going, I decided that instead of leaving it there, I'd melt it -- the package had lots of warnings about not putting under direct water cause it'd fizzle up.  

So I'm thinking - well that could be fun (remember, this is the woman who has bubble baths at least a few times / week ;)) - so I hold it under the shower stream...  And no dramatic fizziness (I was hoping like shaking can of pop drama) but then for whatever reason, probably cause I'm still 12 at heart.  Actually I think I was more mature at 12 than I am now *g* But anyways I decided to see what happens if you trap the fizziness, and squished it between my hands.  

Well it felt kinda like pop rocks - no big deal.  Except...  And here's the fun part I never realized...  Apparently shower steamers (and my guess is also bath bombs, except I've never felt the need to try and melt one of those) are actually endothermic???  My palms, under the hot running water of the shower, but surrounding this little fizzy, were getting cold!   It was the coolest thing (sorry, not sorry).  

Anyways - I realize this is essentially the equivalent of the volcano from the Grade 4 science fair, but it amused me so I figured I'd share ;)  What can I say, it's been a LONG few weeks.

I hope this kid got extra credit for the dino!

In other news, my change management paper is due this week.  Hence the procrastination blog post.  The paper's no problem but I'm super disappointed in the course, especially as I was *really* looking forward to it :(   Ah well.

Work has been...  crazy.  12h+ days most days and some weekend.  Meetings all day and then work all evening -- and even that is tricky cause my Vancouver people don't clock out till 8pm our time, so even "uninterrupted" work time often has, well, interruptions.   Would like to say, this is not a complaint, just a level setting of why everything else in my life is how it is atm.  πŸ˜‚  I'd far rather be busy than bored.   And most of what I was doing in the evening was content creation.  There's still a TON of that to do (honestly - it'd be faster to write another book!), but I finished the last of the time-sensitive content on Friday.  So I'm hoping that means I can dial back to almost normal-people hours starting next week (also - term paper due Wed πŸ˜‚ so, you know, Mon and Tues night kinda have to be school rather than work); will be a long while before it's actually under control, but the fires should be down to a controlled simmer by next Friday.  Either that's accurate, and I'll have a lovely long weekend, or I've jinxed myself and I'll have fodder for a blog post ;-P

I've cancelled my VR cycling for end of May, partially cause I wasn't using it a lot lately and partially  cause the weather is finally suitable for outside cycling.  Which, may not be as exciting, but I feel is prob a good mental health thing.  It's also more fun.   I would like to get one more decent ride in between now and then though -- although that's prob dependent on how the above two paragraphs go *g*.  I'm keeping Supernatural for now though - it's good for that short "just get off the couch" level of exercise.

First sunburn of the year today -- writing my paper in the backyard.  Like being in high school again!  lol - it'll be faded to tan by tomorrow except my feet...  My poor lobster feet.  Someday I will learn.  Or maybe not ;)

Okay back to the paper.  Night!

A fantasy break

"You're a wizard, Harry" -- a line that spurred the imagination of a generation.   Alas, the invites to Hogwarts are few and far between.

However, today...  I had my opportunity to be a wizard...

...in the VR game aptly named "The Wizards" lol.   It is a "fight the bad guys" type game so not sure how far I'll make it; traditionally this kind of game doesn't hold my attention for long, but we'll see.  But the actions are kinda fun -- flip your hand over and a fireball appears.   Push both hands forward and you shoot lightening bolts.   All the drama ;)   And - at least in the first level - you have a disembodied mentor of sorts who offers advice and training in a reasonably facetious manner.   Lol made me laugh a few times.

Okay the pic is atrocious and all pixely (which it was not in the game), but DRAGON! 

I got through the first level with no problems.  Actually played it a few times, mostly by accident, as I was figuring out the controls (eg - if you stop for dinner in the middle of the level, you start over again at the beginning.  And at the end instead of selecting the next level, I replayed this one once more -- MUCH faster - and injury free - on the second effort for sure).

I died promptly on the second level.  Suffice to say there's a definite difficulty jump.  I also, to be fair, forgot I can shoot lightening bolts (now there's a sentence I never thought I'd type!) which would have definitely taken care of that issue so will try again another day.

The actions at times fail to register which is super frustrating, but when they work, they're all kinds of fun :)

Anyways - it's my week off class, so thought I'd try something new.

Another two done :)

So Wed night I submitted my last papers for Corporate Governance and Business Consulting.

Corporate Governance I went into expecting, well, very little from in reality.  I expected to be bored out of my mind and check a few boxes.  And in reality I really enjoyed the class.  Learned a ton, and all of it immediately relevant as RBC was the company I chose to use for analysis.    So this one was good.  The papers were relevant and I learned a ton.  I'm not super confident on the last paper - mostly cause life was chaos (between new job and pita other course not nearly as much got done), but at least it's submitted.  We'll see in a couple weeks.

Business Consulting, otoh, was a frustrating waste of time.  Instead of being, as the description suggested, about consulting - practices, frameworks, dealing with consultants, engagement models, etc...   The whole thing was about setting up a consulting business.   So I had to spend many many hours creating a business plan that I have zero interest in pursuing.  Learned next to nothing since A - I've done it before, and B - most parts are covered in other courses already.   The final "paper" felt more like a high school assignment, because the volume of questions they wanted answered meant within the required wordcount you could only provide the most superficial of answers.  And two of the parts were cut and paste duplicates of the first paper - like that's both time and word count that could've been better spent potentially learning something.  The whole thing was a waste, and even more frustrating in that work was SO swamped that I bitterly resented having to give time to this.   But it's done.   I have no idea how it'll score since the requirements seemed to contradict each other.  I'd be interesting to see the course feedback on this one since I was on three different whatsapp study groups for it and all three seemed to feel the way I did.   I will pass, just not sure if I'll maintain my HD (85+) average.   Which in reality doesn't actually matter for anything, but still nice to have lol.

Have a week off and then Change Management.  Only one this term as the second would be Project Management I got exempted from that.  Good timing for an easier term for sure.

Double Digit Day

lol my boss today mentioned that it was my "double digit day" (10th day on the job) and it made me laugh.   So now I have a couple "triple digit" goals ;)

So right - the last two weeks have been INSANE.   Primarily because it was not ideal timing to take on a new job the week before both term papers were due *sigh*  But here we are...

Right - so the work aspect; I had the advantage that a long transition meant I had time to meet my team and a bunch of stakeholders before ever beginning (to put in perspective - I had 90 pages of notes) but even though I had some idea of the workload awaiting me, I didn't *really* know.  

When I used to have the opportunity to teach riders to gallop for the first time, I'd tell them they're going to think they're galloping, be pretty sure of it actually, and then they're going to *know* they're galloping.  This...  This was kinda the work version of that.  Albeit somehow not nearly as much of an adrenaline rush lol.

So yeah, there's a lot more than I'd expected...  I mean - the words "blank slate" had been thrown around, but while I theoretically got it, some baseline assumptions I'd made were proven dramatically false.  On the plus side -- I'm a builder.  I *love* creating things and so I'm super excited about this whole concept.  The only slight stressor is how much of it we need yesterday.  It really is playing catchup and slightly insane.

And then on Day 8, I got to present my plans to my boss' Town Hall.   To steal a line from Rebecca: "Here's the deep end, start swimming."   And you know, other than that writing a speech for a few hundred people wasn't really what I wanted to do to kick off week two, that part - sure.  Don't ask too much depth, but I can give you the theory.   The challenge came with teh Q&A.   πŸ˜‚   It was to cover the *whole* Townhall, so honestly I'd entirely dismissed it.  I mean who *really* cares about what the PMO is doing in the grand scheme of things...   Uh a bunch of people apparently.   "I'll let Lauren answer that", "Lauren would you like to take this one?"  "Oh look, this one has Lauren's name in it - I'll read it out and then let her answer" *sigh*.   To be honest, none of the questions were unreasonable, and I got through it, and the feedback I got back was pretty good.  But OMG.

But in two weeks -- the team has come together and created a vision statement that they're all aligned to, I've prioritized which order we need going to put fires out (the ones people are enjoying roasting marshmallows over can wait a bit ;-P), I've met a ton more people, and I'm slowly learning how things work at GAM (which is very much it's on little world).  It feels like my old job was a lifetime ago, and yet at least a few times a day somebody will say something that will make me realize how very new I still am.

But I am super excited about it.  Like to the point that I keep getting up in the middle of the night and making notes of things I've thought of and things to do...  Fortunately next term I only have one class and it's change management, so lots of time for the extra hours work's going to require for  a few weeks.

Ghost Kitchen

A kitchen that's invisible that magically makes yummy goodness appear in front of me?  Sign me up!

So tonight's adventure began when Rebecca texted me about the existence of Ghost Kitchen's - and more importantly, that they come with Cinnabon ;)   And I googled, mildly interested cause, well, Cinnabon...  And really didn't find what exactly it was beyond shared kitchen space, but okay - there's one in Burlington.   And they also have Cheesecake Factory?!?!   What is this craziness of wonderful expensive calories?

But it's Friday night after an INSANE two weeks (that'll get its own post) and Chris was settled into a night of gaming...   A drive out to Burlington, by my own, tunes rocking...  AND a survival treat at the end?  Suddenly that seemed an excellent idea.

So off I go with Spanish Alexa giving me instructions -- I'm getting much better at understanding those now.  Although honestly, all I wanted was the last few blocks to tell me which of a ton of stripmalls it'd be in ;)   And when I got there, I realized the instructions were entirely unneeded.

It's neither small nor hidden

I definitely had a moment when I pulled in to park as the store was empty.  In fact, other than that the lights were all on, it didn't look much like a store?  No people, no cash register, no...  Anything really.  I think I had in my head that'd be like a gas station convenience type store with diff types of fast food in different sections of the store.  Suffice to say it was not.   And the parking spaces all had a QR code for car pickup.  But of course, I hadn't ordered anything.  hmmmm

So I was about to go to read all the COVID type signs on the door and find out how I should acquire food when two young women pulled up and parked next to me, seemed to have the same discussion, but much faster than I (admittedly I may have been still rocking out a bit - ME time, remember ;) - decided too try to go in the store.  They also paused at the door but then went in, so I deemed that was probably the right solution.

Inside there are two ordering screens and one marketing wall mostly showing ALL the yummy things.  Then at the far end an old-school (think Blockbuster movie rental) popcorn machine and a tiny counter.   There were just the three of us there, so I stayed well back while they made their choices.   Honestly - perfectly laid out for social distancing, that's for sure.

LOTS of space - IDK what the marketing wall was showing here? 🀷‍♀️ 
When I actually bothered to look at it while waiting for food, it was all food.

When it was my turn to order I learned of just how big the range of yummy  goodness is (or will be anyways).   All kinds of options and very easy menu to navigate.   Alas, they were all out of Ben and Jerry's, but I did successfully acquire celebratory cheesecake and tomorrow's breakfast complements of Cinnabon ;)

Lots of things to pick from

Then I waited all by myself for a bit - no signs of life anywhere...  But I figured food would magically appear as it had for the two women ahead of me.   And sure enough, a disembodied voice announce my number, then a person appeared for a second or two to deposit my bags on the table and quickly disappeared again.

And it was done.  Total human interaction = brief sighting of another human and that's it.   AND the Cinnabons were warm!   I mean, not super helpful as they're for breakfast and honestly just made me want to eat them now.  But conceptually it was a lovely touch ;)   Even when you get them actually *from* Cinnabon, they're not usually warm.

So yeah.  Not a bad, if very unexpected, way to spend my evening.




Beware of the Monster

So with work and school both being chaos last week (drinking from not one but TWO firehoses simultaneously) my workouts became...  Essentially nonexistent.

This week is going to be similarly crazy - until Thurs am.  But I decided today it was important to get at least one workout in, and because it'd been a while, it should be a *good* one.   πŸ˜‚ 

Right.  So I picked one that was 34 minutes long, Hard, and a "Monster".  hmmmm maybe that last category should've given it away.  Oh - and then I decided to wear my weighted boxing gloves.  Cause, why not.

Well cause my arms aren't that strong - that's why not!  Lol I lasted two songs.  Two.  Honestly I lasted through one and suffered through the second.  My "power" scores -- usually in the 90s -- were in the 50s.  Yikes.  

Okay so ditched the weighted gloves and went for weighted vest instead.  Let my legs take the workout.  Although right atm, I kinda wish I had stalls to muck and hay to throw - I'm missing the casual fitness for sure.

The weighted vest was good.  Had a great workout, was sweaty and tired at the end, and probably will be sore tomorrow - we're deeming that an all-round win.

For perspective - with gloves, my power dropped to the 50s,
even after taking them off I was only in the 70s.

In other news - Facebook/Oculus introduced new subscription models this week which caused quite the furor...  But of the games on the list, I'm not too concerned.  The ones I have included:

- VZFit - this is the cycling app, it's been subscription all along (there is a free option that I'm pretty sure still exists) the only thing that changed here is now it's "legal" - on the Oculus store - as opposed to a side option.  I pay for the subscription in the winter, cancel it in the summer.  Pricing and offering didn't change so all good.  They do constant updates and I like being able to leave my basement, so all good.

- Tripp - this one I personally don't think is worth a subscription.  The free version is moderately interesting.  I bought a "lifetime subscription" at one point when they were super-cheap, and they're honouring that, so I'm good to go either way.  But really, I almost never use it so don't see any great value.

- FitXR - this is the boxing / dance app.  I would be concerned about the subscription model since the original game was not cheap (the others the original game is free) - BUT they're honouring prior purchases.  So anybody who currently has the game gets to keep it and any added packs they purchased as well as a 90 day trial of the subscription version.  So for me that's perfect.  I'm moderately interested in the HIIT portion of the subscription and will try that out, but for my handful of workouts a month, the content I already purchased will last me for years.   And if I wanted to do it more seriously, the subscription might be okay.  My issue with this game is I was starting to hurt myself by putting too much power into punches that never hit anything...   So I don't play very often anymore.  It's still a better workout than SN, but I was afraid I might do something serious...

So yeah - for me personally, no big deal.  I appreciate the approach FitXR took in honouring prior purchases so that's good.  I'm a little concerned if more games go this way, I won't be able to afford to play very much :(   But we'll see how it goes...   Most of the games I play are once and done, they don't evolve, so I'm hoping that means they stay flat rate.

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Next day follow-up, so that workout was just about right.  I definitely feel in my shoulders, abs, and butt (those 117 squats!) but not so much that it impact function.  I'm aware I did something but not dying.  Just did a short one today to make myself move (and fit it in with food), with no weights of any form, and the scores came back up.   I was actually really enjoying it, so may do a longer one later when I have more time.  Class tonight though so we'll see.  


For comparison - this from today is where my scores are more normally;
This was a medium, non-monster, and much shorter.