About Me...

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Cincinnati, OH, United States
I'm a scientist , yogi, book worm, scifi junk, and I'm a little obsessed with my pup. My life is full of discovery both in the lab and out of the lab. This blog is my place to share my experiences as a person trying to stay happy and healthy in this crazy world.

Friday, November 26, 2010

Giving challenge days 13-19

Update on the 29 day giving challenge....

Day13- gave an extra long walk for my little pooch Philip.  He greatly appreciated the extra time outside exerting energy. 

Day14- A thank you card for a fellow graduate student who as been extremely helpful to me, and she is getting ready to graduate. She's a wonderful person and  I don't say thank you enough for all the advice she gives me.

Day15- On day 15 I didn't know what to give, but as I sat in nearly gridlocked traffic on the way home I realized what I could give.  Many of my fellow  motorists stuck in the traffic close to the shopping center in our area of town were getting very frustrated.  One lane of traffic was extra backed up since someone was trying to get over into another lane (the lane I was in) from that lane.  So, after about 5 cars went by them not letting them in I decided that's what I could give for the day.....some generosity in traffic.  

Day16- A box of delish pastries to our support staff for the Molecular and Developmental Biology program.  They both work so hard and make the lives of each and every graduate student  easier.  

Day17- Sometimes I can be a real brat, and usually I regret it immediately.   That's what happened on Day 17.  I was a brat to Jonah and just being quick tempered with him for no reason.  My gift to him that day was a sincere apology, and I stopped acting bratty.  

Day18- I wrote a letter to my best friend letting her know why I love her and admire her.  

Day19- Today I volunteered to teach a lab session, a gift to my advisor.  It's was a great opportunity for me to get some hands on teaching experience as well.   

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Giving Challenge Day 8-12...

Day 8:  I gave a gift to myself this day, a new pair of ballet slippers.  I've recently rediscovered my love of ballet from my childhood, and been talking some adult beginner ballet classes through the Cincinnati ballet. After getting my slippers I strapped them on and practiced a few movements in my kitchen :)

My day 8 also coincided with Veteran's Day, so to my two uncles who were in the military I also told them happy veteran's day.

Day 9:  I gave the gift of presence. I've said it before....I have a crazy busy mind thinking this way and that all the time.  So, on day 9 I went to dinner with  Jonah and made an effort to be present..completely.  It's amazing how much both of us benefited from just me being present, and not thinking about the hundreds of things I need to do.

Day 10: I gave Jonah a hockey ticket.  We wanted to go see the Cincinnati Cyclones with friends, so I paid for tickets.  The game was exciting, although not too many fights, it went into overtime then shoot out.

Day 11: I gave an extra uninterrupted 10 minute back and belly run for little pup Philip.

Day 12: I gave a small donation to NPR (WVXU in Cincinnati).  This makes me sound like more of an adult than I'm usually willing to admit, but I love NPR.  Especially All Things Considered and Marketplace Money.  NPR in Cincinnati is ran almost entirely through donations, and is not affiliated with a University like many NPR stations.

The giving challenge is paying off.  As I previously mentioned, my outlook on life in general is improving. I'm also happier in general, that's not to say I don't get frustrated or upset still, but I'm able to calm myself more quickly or just brush off the smaller things I may have previously gotten upset over.

Friday, November 19, 2010

Ode to my grandmother...

My grandmother has been gone for 6 years, and I still miss her dearly.  She was the person I went to with problems and she gave the BEST advice.  Patricia Ann Roseberry was the most generous, caring, humorous, and loving person I've ever met.  Today, the 6th anniversary of her passing, I dedicate to her memory.

When I was much younger my family lived in Tennessee, so we only saw my grandparents a couple times per year.  Every time they visited Grandma would tell me "Don't forget who I am."  I never forgot her and I never will.  She and I shared many adventures together including: garage sales at 8am on Saturday after a wonderful breakfast at cracker barrel (cherry pancakes), shopping, knitting, watching lifetime movies, and cooking.  Every aspect of my life is touched by a nugget of knowledge she shared with me.

Thursday, November 18, 2010


I love watching the sunrise while running in the morning.  It's the start of a new day full of potential.  Being a part of the breaking day carries it's properties over to me.....while running in the solidarity of the morning I can clear my head and get my thoughts together for the day.  There is so much I could accomplish.  I want to package this feeling  in the a little shiny box (with a cute bow) and keep it with me all day.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Giving challenge day 6-7...

I'm continuing along with the giving challenge.  I have to admit that giving during the week is much more challenging than the weekends, mostly because the majority of my time is spent in the lab.

Day 6: I gave time to friends.  I had coffee and a chat in the afternoon, then in the evening I went to trivia with a group of friends.  (We won trivia that  night and got a $50 gift card, yay.  This was the first time we've won at trivia in the many months we've been going)
Day7: I gave a friend a ride home from dinner.  A group of us went to dollar burger night and offered a ride home to a friend who lives close to me.  Also, while we were at dollar burgers we had a server with the best mustache I've ever seen, which totally brightened my day!

As I've been going through this challenge I've been journaling my gift as well as what I'm grateful for that day (at least 3 things).  Day 6 and 7 had similar things I was grateful for: friends, food, and productivity at work.

Monday, November 15, 2010

29 day gift challenge days 1-5 summary...

I had mentioned in previous blogs that I was starting the 29 day gift challenge.  This challenge is based upon the book written by Cami Walker, 29 gift.  The premise is to give a gift no matter how small for 29 days while keeping a journal of your giving.  Optimally giving should not be out of obligation but out of a spirit of generosity and caring.  Also, if you skip a day you are supposed to start over.

Days 1-5: Gifts given
Day1: hot chocolate for a coworker having a bad day
Day2: kindly held the elevator for someone who was down the hall quite a way, and made small talk while in the elevator.
Day3: gave bag of cookies to a homeless mother
Day4: gave muffins to a friend who was taking a trip for work
Day5: Left a fun children's book (Charlie and the Chocolate Factory) on a bus stop bench with a note for someone to take the book read it and pass it along.

Although, giving is gratifying alone there are other benefits from this  challenge that I've noticed.  The main difference I've noticed is that my days are more optimistic.  Graduate school has a tendency to drag away your optimism, especially when research success rates are so low (10% is good).  Waking up and trying to be conscious of living in a manner that is conducive for giving has allowed me to be kinder to people, and regain some personal attributes I thought were gone.

As I get busier the challenge is becoming harder.  Let's see what else I can give and what will happen.

Monday, November 8, 2010

Restorative weekend

This weekend was a much needed break from the hustle and bustle.  I allowed myself to sleep more and relax.  On Saturday I went for a nice run, many of the runners were very friendly which I think is because the humidity is gone so everyone enjoys it much more.  After running I went to an adult ballet class with a friend.  It's been almost 17 years since I've had a ballet class, and this class marketed as beginners was more like intermediate.  It was fun and we are trying another class, this one more basic, in a week and a half.  Following ballet we got mochas at coffee emporium (YUM).  The rest of my weekend was not nearly as eventful.....I relaxed and caught up on some episodes of lie to me, ran errands, went to the library, read, walked the pup, and cleaned my apartment.  Phil and I did stop at hyde bark pet shop for a treat, carob cupcake for him, on our walk.

As I mentioned in my last post I've been thinking a lot about the 29 day gift challenge.  I started it last week, and I've been journaling my progress.  I'm going to add updates along the way about the challenge here on my blog.  I'll let you guys know what the gift I gave for the day was and my thoughts on the process.  As a sneak peak I'll let you all know that the mindset that this challenge brings along with it has restored some of my optimism.  Happy Monday and let's let the feeling of relaxation from the weekend carry over into the week.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

I love reading....

I don't know if you all know this about me, but I love reading.  Big surprise? Well recently I started a new book that is very inspiring, 29 gifts.  I highly recommend it.  I'm only about half way through, but I'm already considering trying the 29 gift challenge.  The book chronicles the story of Cami Walker, her struggle with Multiple Sclerosis, and how she used the 29 day gift challenge to change her outlook through giving and receiving daily.  A movement has been started by Cami where people can  blog their own 29 day challenge.  Check out the 29 gift website.  I wanted to share with powerful story with everyone even though I'm not completely finished with the book.  I'll make sure to let everyone know when I start my challenge.....and how it's going.  

Other books I'm reading:  Mastering Relationships and Do androids dream of electric sheep? both of which I'm just starting.  

I recently finished: Coming back stronger (by Drew Brees), Death Qualified, and Mockingjay (the third and final book of the hunger games trilogy).  

If you have some additional recommendations let me know.  I'm always reading something and trying to learn or escape into a great story.  

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Election Day...

It's November 2nd, the first Tuesday of November which means....election day.  Make sure you get out and do your civic duty today!  I'm planning on making a nice mug of coffee on my Keurig (thanks Jonah) and going to the poling station down the street before I head into the lab.   The race for senator and Governor in Ohio have been intense, with an onslaught of commercials smearing one another.  This year the midterm elections seem nearly as advertised as the presidential elections.

Getting out and voting allows me to have a say, at least partially, in what is going on in our government.  The state of our nation is unsettled and we all need to let those in office know how we feel!

I'm looking forward to casting my vote.