Sunday Stats

*Since my family first got an NES, I’ve had a controller in my hands. Exploring new worlds, meeting new characters and experiencing stories… in some ways, I’ve just connected better with the world through games. However, it’s also very important to me to be present in my life, to improve myself, to go out and MEET the people I’ve connected with online and to expand my knowledge. I spend hours in games; how do I level myself up?

In this weekly series, I’ll chronicle how I’ve improved my “stats” with completely arbitrary scoring.*

-3 Intelligence – How did I make myself a little smarter? What did I learn?
I was INCREDIBLY unfocused and distracted this week. So much work drama popped up and social obligations I would have rather turned down ensures my anxiety was beating up my brain. Next week, I plan to minimize distractions by blocking off my calendar for specific work, listening to my productivity playlist and turning off my internet for 3 hours while I work.

-2 Charisma – How was I less awkward or more beautiful?
I was stuck wearing my glasses all week and living the cliche nerd-girl trope of being awkward and clumsy. Here I am after spilling smoothie on my shirt at work. Cool.

The face of awkward geekdom

-2 Strength – New workouts, breakthroughs, challenges.
Sigh… I can’t go to the gym in glasses. They sweat right off my face. Next week, everything changes- gym twice a day, 3x a week and no drinking on weeknights! I need to get into ideal shape by November.

+2 Defense – Where did I consciously avoid or deflect negative energy?
I did alot of spiritual work. Spells, meditation, tarot work… it felt really good. The biggest work was creating a money manifesting wallet, which I’ll write about later this week!

+1 Luck – Something good that happened this week.
Overall it was a good week. As you know, I judge the goodness of my weeks on how much cake there is. And this week, there was a ton of cake. Discovery Channel sent us Shark Week cupcakes, we had a birthday and a farewell party. And my ass is in dire need of the gym now.

⚠️ Confectionery Carnage Imminent ⚠️ [/[/[/[/[/[/[/[/[/[/[/

-2 Wealth – How did I save towards my goals?
I took some financial hits this week. A February trip to the ER came back to bite me months later. I have a trip home next weekend longer than I was planning which means extra dog sitting expenses for Muldoon. And I had to buy new contacts. Why is life so expensive? Why does healthcare suck so much?

How did YOU level up this week?

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Liquid Meditation

liquid meditation

One of my favorite ways to relax into meditation is what I call the Liquid Meditation. Strangely, this was an exercise my computer teacher first led my 6th grade class thought. It’s become a powerful tool for me to refocus and relax any tension so I’d like to share it.

meditation

*Find a comfortable sitting position.

*Bring your attention to your breath and quiet your thoughts.

*Visualize your body as a clear, empty container with an opening at the crown of your head. What’s it made of? Plastic? Glass? Crystal?

*Now imagine there’s an endless vat of liquid floating above you. Think about the color of the liquid. It could align with one of your chakras, or your mood. What’s the consistency of the liquid? Is it smooth and slippery like oil? Is it thick like molasses? Is it fizzy like champagne? Lastly, think about the temperature. Is it a warm bath? Hot like lava? Cool like a river?

If it’s a lot to imagine, try one of these starters:
-Warm, molten milk chocolate
-Cold fresh squeezed orange juice
-Hot liquid gold
-Turquoise tropical sea water

*Visualize the liquid pouring slowly through the crown of your head. It first fills each of your toes, relaxing every nerve. Then your feet and heels. Slowly, the liquid fills each of your legs. Feel it envelope your muscles. As it spreads up and out into your hips, imagine them relaxing and opening to accommodate the liquid. (I like to stay in my hips for a bit since I hold a lot of tension there). Feel the liquid fill your belly, relaxing the muscles, relaxing the breath. Imagine your spine straightening, your ribcage opening up a little as it moved into your chest. As it fills your shoulders, it begins to spill over and down your arms, into your fingertips, hands, wrists, then all the way up your arms to the shoulders again. This is also a great place to spend some time, focusing on the weight and temperature of the liquid. Next, the liquid moves up your neck, to your chin and the base of your cranium. Up to your mouth, nose and cheekbones, eyes, ears, forehead. Finally reaching the top of your head and overflowing.

*Focus on your breathing again. You should feel super relaxed and content.

What’s your favorite meditation practice?

Creating Balance and Navigating Eclipse Season

dazzle
It’s eclipse season. That means cosmic shifts are coming TWICE this month and again in early August. Not to mention a big ole Mercury Retrograde in the middle of it all! According to my charts, I can expect monumental realizations over the next several weeks as well as changes to my world AND my perspectives.

As a routine-and-stability-loving Taurus, changes make me immensely uncomfortable. I just want to graze my little bull face in my cozy bull field of familiar bull grass and lovely bull flowers. My anxiety has been spiking over the last week, as evidenced by ab overindulgence in retail therapy.

To combat this, I’ve been really tuning into my body and listening to what I need. Here are some ways I’m creating my own stability:

Decluttering
A cleaning frenzy overtook me last weekend. I minimized clutter and reorganized things to make the space more open. Cleanliness helps me feel prepared for unexpected circumstances. No matter what I have to deal with, it won’t be the Battle of the Dustbunnies!

Meditating
Meditating really helps unblock my brain. Even more so when holding crystals charged with powerful energies! Rose Quartz has been helpful for grounding me. I’m also a fan of Lepidolite because it contains lithium (a component of anti-anxiety meds) naturally. It’s also a great stone to promote calm and balance, helping you to breathe and think before you react. As one who can be quick to react, carrying this crystal really helps scale me back. In fact, I just ordered this bracelet from Pine Shanty.

lepidolite bracelet


Inviting the elements

I subconsciously brought all four elements into my home in the last couple of weeks. Fire is almost always a given between candles and smudging, but I took a rare bath and loaded up my diffuser with water and rose oil. I completely overhauled the air circulation system in the apartment with a giant new BEAST of an AC unit and a new tower fan to push the coolness around. AND I brought in a plant, which I never do as I tend to kill them.

Resting
Aside from the aforementioned bath, I’ve been sleeping a LOT more than normal. Sleeping in until the last possible moment before I’m going to be late for work. Napping after work. Going to bed early on weekends. Sleeping in past 11am on weekends. Sleep is a vacation for your brain. In a sleep state, your mind can truly wander without distraction and process the loose ends of the day. I always love waking up and referencing Dream Moods for any imagery, colors, objects or themes that stood out in my dreams.

How do you create balance in your life?

Sunday Stats

Sunday Stats.jpg

*Since my family first got an NES, I’ve had a controller in my hands. Exploring new worlds, meeting new characters and experiencing stories… in some ways, I’ve just connected better with the world through games. However, it’s also very important to me to be present in my life, to improve myself, to go out and MEET the people I’ve connected with online and to expand my knowledge. I spend hours in games; how do I level myself up?

In this weekly series, I’ll chronicle how I’ve improved my “stats” with completely arbitrary scoring.*

+5 Intelligence – How did I make myself a little smarter? What did I learn?
I’ve been researching music lessons because I think an irl appointment will make me more accountable to my guitar learning process.

+2 Charisma – How was I less awkward or more beautiful?
Red eye mystery solved! My contacts were scratching my allergy swollen eyes. I’m getting new contacts after a week of dripping nasty gelatinous steroid drops in my eyeballs.

+1 Strength – New workouts, breakthroughs, challenges.
I got myself a couple of 3 lb free weights and use them to do some arm toning moves while I binge watch Jane the Virgin. +1 for multitasking!

+2 Defense – Where did I consciously avoid or deflect negative energy?
When I was 16, I didn’t really know what I was doing. But I cast a love spell… at it took 17 years to work, but here I am getting ready to marry the subject of that spell. To clear the air (and energy) and make sure this moves forward on his own free will (or doesn’t move forward at all), I started a love unbinding spell. The next phase of the spell will be on the New Moon this week.
IMG_9934

+1 Luck – Something good that happened this week.
Working remote was a nice treat this week. But my big highlight was finally earning my Beast Growler as part of the Coney Island Brewery Mug Club! I filled it on the 4th of July with Coney Island Ale.


+3 Wealth – How did I save towards my goals?
Literally, plus 3. I had three dogs this week! Well, the goofy ham with his tongue hanging out is my Muldoon, but still! Holiday rates + 2 clients = a big bang in my bank account!

How did YOU level up this week?

NYC Summer Goals!

Ice Cream Party.jpg

Summer in the city means sundresses, rooftops, sidewalk cafes, turning hydrants into sprinklers and, of course The Great Flip Flop Debate (as an island girl, I refuse to give up my flip flops). I’m not a huge fan of the heat, but I’m determined to put down the controller and brave the sun more. So I’ve put together a list of fun summer outings I want to accomplish before September.

Sister Tattoos – Scheduled!

Ride the Thunderbolt

Find the most wild ice cream concoction

Sip fancy cocktails on a rooftop

Pack a picnic and head to a park

Rent kayaks

Explore a new neighborhood on a Citi Bike

Go to an outdoor concert

What’s on your adventure list?

MoviePass is a Massive Scam

I’m not a generally a complainer, but over the last couple of months I’ve had such a horrible experience with MoviePass I feel morally obligated to warn my fellow humans.

I signed up for the service in early February. And I honestly loved it. MoviePass gave me the freedom to see even the shitty movies guilt-free. Making fun of crappy movies at the theater with my friends was actually one of my favorite things to do for the first half of 2018. When I reserved a movie too early one day and had an issue getting my ticket at the theater, MoviePass customer service responded immediately through their in-app chat system and sorted out my problem in time for me to catch the film.

I enjoyed my experience so much that I gifted Ryan a MoviePass for Valentine’s Day so we could have an easy date night whenever. Unfortunately, at the time of writing this, MoviePass doesn’t have an easy way to gift a membership, so I just signed up for a second account with a different email address, my same payment method and surprised Ryan.

In April, I needed to cancel the account I made for him. He had never activated the card, downloaded the app or used the service. I thought this would be easy. I contacted customer service through my app, sure they would be as fast and helpful as they were when I had a ticket problem.

I was wrong.

My question went unanswered for DAYS. I checked in on my app every couple hours for two days and then had more important things to do. I had notifications turned on, so I just waited for the notification. Or an email. Or ANY form of communication. After 5 days, I checked on the app again. I never got a push notification alerting me to a response, but MoviePass had finally responded… and 5 hours later, closed my case because I hadn’t seen it and responded so they “assumed everything was good.”

I should note that their response before closing my case directed me to their website to cancel the account. There is nowhere on their website to access your account, so the website directs you back to the app where they don’t answer either.

After repeating this cycle – messaging them, opening a new case, getting the same response, no notification, case closed before I could provide more information – THREE TIMES, I finally got a new answer on the 4th attempt. They told me I needed the card in my possession and they needed the number to close the account. It took me 2 months and a lot of pain and suffering to finally get the unused card from him. At which point, I contacted customer support yet AGAIN with the card number. This time, they told me that it didn’t matter if I had the card. Because the account was under his name, HE would need to contact them to close the account.

OH! And they also made sure to respond after midnight and close the case before 7am for non-response. It’s not like I need to sleep.

It’s the end of June at this point so let’s recap: I have been paying for this subscription for three months while getting the run around about canceling the account. The account is linked to MY email address, MY bank account and I have the card IN MY POSSESSION. But now they need HIM to contact them to cancel? Bullshit. I am the owner of his account and my account. It’s clear at this point that MoviePass is going to do everything in their power to prevent me from closing the account.

So fuck them. Now I want MY account canceled.

They never responded to this request. They also stopped responding to my Twitter DMs for help. Thankfully, I was able to cancel my account and delete the app. THEN re-download the app, log into the gift account with my OTHER email and finally cancel that one too. I filed a complaint with the BBB (where their reviews are shockingly negative) and wanted to tell my story here as well so no one else gets dragged and charged for months.

I understand that MoviePass is struggling – especially with the recent launch of AMC’s A-list service – but is milking me for $10 a month so worth it to them that they’re willing to damage their reputation and customer perception? Clearly, MoviePass is just another greedy company willing to dick over the users they depend on just to make a buck.

Honestly, AMC’s program sounds MUCH better. And I’m sure Regal will introduce their own suite of options as well.

Have you ever used MoviePass?

Sunday Stats

Sunday Stats.jpg

*Since my family first got an NES, I’ve had a controller in my hands. Exploring new worlds, meeting new characters and experiencing stories… in some ways, I’ve just connected better with the world through games. However, it’s also very important to me to be present in my life, to improve myself, to go out and MEET the people I’ve connected with online and to expand my knowledge. I spend hours in games; how do I level myself up?

In this weekly series, I’ll chronicle how I’ve improved my “stats” with completely arbitrary scoring.*

+5 Intelligence – How did I make myself a little smarter? What did I learn?
Mashable had an incredible sale on coding classes that would help me learn how to make games! I can’t think of a better format to tell the stories and create the worlds I want. There’s a game I’ve been dreaming up for a long time now… this feels like a step toward one day making it a reality.

-3 Charisma – How was I less awkward or more beautiful?
I was in an allergy fog all week. Red, itchy eyes. Runny nose. Clogged ears. Basically just a gross mess.

+1 Strength – New workouts, breakthroughs, challenges.
I don’t really do freelance work anymore. It’s stressful. It’s hard to get paid fairly. And it’s created tense moments between me and people I once respected. But this week I got a request. It’s not a lot of money, but it’s not about the money. This request comes from my first job. Freelancing for them was the start of my career.  I owe everything to that gig. “No” wasn’t even an option when they asked. It’s all about respecting your roots and being grateful for where you came from. And I am. And that feels like a strong move forward.

+2 Defense – Where did I consciously avoid or deflect negative energy?
I’ve been feeling really run down since coming back from E3. Allergies are a nightmare. I’m tired all the time. I’m dangerously unmotivated. So I perked myself up with a little treat from Strand Books. I went in for a pencil case to hold my bujo markers and got myself a new set of neon and glitter pens, a set of motivating purpose pens, sleek new NYC moleskine (I hope this means all the citybooks are coming back in this modern design!) and a big fat root beer float lollipop. Carrying the bag back to my office felt like a surprising little reward, even though I already knew everything that was inside.

IMG_0931

+3 Luck – Something good that happened this week.
We got the greenlight to work from home next week so I’m pretty thrilled about that.

-2 Wealth – How did I save towards my goals?
I’ve been on a bit of a spender this week… (that’s spend + bender, btw) Treating myself is a double edged sword. Next week I’ll make some cuts and get back on track.

How did YOU level up this week?