Exerpt from Zeitgeist II with John Perkins

To hear more from John Perkins: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCSs79-RxOdRkgiOp5asra5Q/videos


State of Melanie 2/5/2018

Another day, another hustle.

I am still sore from that leg day I posted a couple days ago. It got me a little too bad. I think that I would like to be able to do that without getting so sore. But next time, I think I will add sets of glute bridges and hip thrusts to the beginning and end. As somewhat expected, my legs are killing but my glutes escaped the fire. Not completely, but they should feel what everything else feels.

I am going to start my day with a nice 30 minute intermediate yoga with “hamstring opening” boost from the down dog app.

Then I have 5 major goals for the day:

1. Check for newly posted jobs to apply

2. 2 hours of api documentation study

3. Try the solder iron method of bottle cutting

4. Arm day

5. Finish my cross stitch

Although the hot water to ice water method worked well enough with my hand scoring to give me a lot of confidence, for some reason, the bottles I have cut with the nice scoring tool, though sporting very lovely and even score lines, were way too stubborn and I had a zero success rate. I also tried the candle method, and also the string coated in acetone method. Ben showed me a video of a guy using a soldering iron. So! Let’s hope that works. I’m going to need a bunch of cut bottles before I can even think of getting candlemaking equipment.

In other news, Ben and I are putting off our wedding until next year. I was hoping we wouldn’t have to do that, but there is a lot we need to work out. Plus, we are having quite a few expenses happening with the house and car… and with me out of work currently… we’re probably going to be in a better place to have a nice wedding and honeymoon next year.

However, we may take an international trip of some kind! I would definitely love to. There are so many places to see.

Well, hopefully I’ll return with some cut bottles, finished cross stitch, and results from arm day. Until then.


Workout 2/3/2018

I thought it might be fun to post the workouts I do. I also should start using my athos pants again haha… hilarious to invest in such a thing and then not use it for years…

A couple days go I did a cycling class and my crotch is still bruised! I do love cycling as a cardio activity, but I think I’ll remember my bike shorts next time. The day before that, I did an arm strength workout at a “muggle gym” as my aerialist bestie calls them, and I’m still feeling it! So another leg day it is. Tomorrow, I will be going to a yin yoga class in the evening.

Anyways, today I used a set of Fitness blender workouts! This workout is based on doing 100 squat variations.

Warm-up: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yoP-NeGtNMI

Workout: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3FNAoJpGbrI&feature=share

Cool-down: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y3rJ5AzoQzk

Result: I don’t anticipate getting very sore from this workout. That’s not said to detract from the efficacy of the workout, just a note that some workouts rip my muscles apart and some are more suitable for maintenance. In fact, I appreciate that it wasn’t too rough on me since I’ve already been putting myself through a lot. Despite a scary name like 100 squat challenge, it wasn’t too bad. However, I did miss a couple reps from falling down. I could use practicing some of these exercises more to remedy balance issues. Overall, a good workout that I think would be suitable for beginners on a good day or intermediates looking for a maintenance workout.

Edit: I take it back. Almost fell down the stairs. Had to hold the hand rail. Those were some sneaky gains!


I’ve started making testers of my aromatherapy blends. As I am not an aromatherapist- I should definitely stick to the recipes, and I will. I am just a tad surprised at how very delicate the scents are. At least I am not concerned that I am not diluting the oils enough! I’m only going to make two at a time so that I can have a clear nose palate.

I finally have the knitting needles, darning needles, and yarn necessary to knit according to my first pattern. I’m going to make some yoga socks. I’m pretty excited. My mom seems to be too, she is sending me yarn so that I can make her a blanket. Quite the vote of confidence for a beginner, but I will definitely try to make her a blanket…. fortunately that won’t take up the same knitting needles that I’ll be using to make everything else for my shop so I can probably give it a bit of time each day.

I haven’t cut any bottles yet. I am getting a bit held up at the “remove old labels” step. I need to get some cheap vodka which I will probably do on the way home from the spa. I have been wanting to go for so long and now we are having a girl’s night out and I am more than ready!

So I need to use my time wisely today, but my work today will be focused on seeking a day job. I am making good progress on the (2nd) API course, and it is time for me to do the “final” for it, where I will document Swagger’s fictional pet store API. Then I can start the 3rd API course which apparently has a focus on Swagger. Hoping the final for that class will be a good portfolio piece. Then my final trick will be to get experience by helping the Habitica team document their API. They already have some documentation, so there may be nothing I can do, but we will see! I have put out feelers in the group about it. Worst case scenario I have to find some other project to assist.

This weekend, my priority will be designing labels, cutting bottles, and knitting the yoga socks. I think it is possible to finish one sock, maybe even both socks. My next project would be leg warmers. I also apparently need to check the copyright status of the items I will sell in my shop. I am a bit disheartened by how many of the lovely items I thought I might be able to include are apparently hoarded by their designers, despite them not even being in the business of selling the items? I had no idea that sometimes you can’t sell items made from the patterns that you buy! Gross….

I’ve restarted learning Japanese again, and I am also hoping to do some refreshing of my Spanish. I want to be able to at least pull off a somewhat conversational Spanish if it comes up in an interview. I am always clear that I am better at reading, writing, and editing Spanish than speaking it; I still expect they will want to test me at speaking it though, and I need to prepare to perform during interview nervousness.

I shelled out $30 for a month pass of classes at area gyms. I get quite a few classes at that price so it is a pretty good deal! I will be taking quite a few of them so hopefully, this will assist my conditioning and weight loss so that I feel confident to start performing aerials again. I’m skipping the upcoming performance in February, but maybe I’ll be ready by March! I want to perform to the song Reverse Skydiving. I wouldn’t be surprised if I posted this to the blog already, but in case not, I’ve linked it below.

Just to reiterate my goals, if I really focus, I think I could perform for dollars by next year and maybe even become an instructor. That would be an excellent source of side-cash or safety net if I can’t find a job in my profession for some reason or if it gets taken over by robots haha. Never learn silks from the robots people!

Feels right

There were a lot of complicated reasons that I became a technical writer, although the vast majority of them I probably would not stand behind today. One of the reasons was I saw it as a way to get close to technology without feeling the pressures of having to produce it at the pace that seemed excessive to me at the time. I thought that maybe, like Einstein reading patents, my producing documentation would teach me many things that would keep me engaged with technology, so that I could pursue learning it at my own pace and for my own purposes. It was an attempt to take path of least resistance and avoid competition or having to stay up all night for a boss man. It seemed that other technologists were giving up their health and I just didn’t want that to be my life.

So far, my plan has not panned out. Not only did I vastly underestimate the demands of a 9-5 on time, I didn’t end up working for a software, engineering, or hardware company, but a manufacturer, of toilets no less. Of diversions, it wasn’t the worst, and it did comfort me after the death of my father, who was a plumber (I got the job a month after my dad passed away; it seemed almost a fate type thing). It was also a position that rescued me from having nothing, and for the years I worked there, I was able to experience middle class life for the first time.

Anyways, as I am on the job search, I’m starting to feel again that it is possible for me to achieve my original vision. I had taken a few of the API classes on codeacademy a few years ago with no result (still haven’t written any apps), but now, as I consider API writing jobs a potential option, I started taking classes on documenting APIs. So here I am refreshing my knowledge of APIs, what do ya know. It’s awesome, and it is making me feel good about being a technical writer. I think regardless of whatever type of job I end up getting hired to do, that I should still try to contribute API documentation to an open source project in my spare time. Then, who knows, maybe just as I planned, I’ll get comfortable enough to end up contributing to the apps themselves.

I didn’t do too much coding on it, but I did find out why my music box three js demo wasn’t showing up on my portfolio. So I have it showing up again (https://melanieallen.nfshost.com/demoscene/music_box.html), but I have a few problems, some new and some old 1) the ballerina doesn’t just turn on the z axis, but flips upside down every other turn 2) the scene takes too long to load 3) the box is not in the center of the screen 4) tapping the turnkey on phone doesn’t work as well as clicking for some reason 5) I want the box to be inside another scene, on a table in a girl’s room 6) I need to add instructions so that people know what to do 8) I eventually want a mirror behind the ballerina, jewelry in the box, other small details 9) I want the music that plays to be more like an actual music box’s.

Yeah! Doin’ it~

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I am down to 204 from 212, and its awesome! It took me awhile to get those macros right, but it is only going to get better… I picked up a hair, nail, and skin vitamin gummies today because I noticed it had vitamin E. I was a little low on that, even with the other vitamin gummies I take.


When I don’t track my nutrients, I neglect to eat organ meats. Ben doesn’t like them, but I think they’re important, not only for iron, mostly for having the optimal zinc:copper ratio. They should be eaten once a week in my opinion, if not two times a week. Not more than that though, its a careful balance. I’ve got to find a way to make them more palatable for him. Also, to keep my omega fats in good ratio, I’ve brought back my habit of eating 8 walnuts or drinking hemp milk with cereal or breakfast.
I think I’m going to eat more of those shirataki noodles. They aren’t the tastiest thing in the world, but they do have a lot of fiber….

The struggle to get enough potassium continues. It will be the last one I conquer. Need to eat more beans and should also try to put some squash on the table.

Trying out an “A-town Funk” dance class tonight. Should be interesting. My friend Laurie goes to a studio called Dance101. It’s interesting, a bit less intimate than the circus classes I’m used to these days. Though, they’re doing this “free week” thing and apparently that accounts for the large numbers in class. Yesterday I did a “Balletronic” class. It was pretty good, definitely some challenging moments. Didn’t realize how challenging until I followed it with a “Stretch and Align” class, and was definitely reaching my fatigue point. I’ll also be following this class with a “Barre and Stretch” class, so, wondering if I’ll even make it. Not to mention- I went to Open practice today! I wanted to practice climbs, but they were already taken, so I practiced sling instead. Hopefully I saved a little juice for tonight. I’m mostly looking forward to the Saturday bellydance class. I would love to get retrained for bellydance, it is one of my favorites for sure!