stapsdoes101things: Pizza with '101' marked out in green pimento (101food)
17 January 2012

I woke up with a hangover today. Last night I drank a couple of glasses of red wine. I'd eaten a few liqueur chocolates through the day. Still, if you abstain from alcohol in Lent, a hangover on Easter Monday morning is hardly surprising.

Yes: from 22nd February to 1st April I drank no alcohol; for form's sake I had a small glass of wine at the final meal of the Lent course on 2nd April, and then nothing again until Easter Day, 8th April. (Pro-tip: do this sort of thing during Lent, and nobody assumes it's because you're pregnant.) It was both easier and harder than I expected. I don't drink much in the ordinary way of things; we make a point of not drinking at home unless it's a special occasion, so the crunch point was always going to be the social situations.

And there were plenty of social situations. Over the month of March I went to: a family party, three church meals (and this is the Church of England; forget everything you ever heard about Christians not drinking), the pub with work, the pub with my partner, Maidstone with my mother for a long walk - all situations where I'd usually have a drink or three. The only thing I missed was the church wine-and-discussion evening, being ill or something.

And, while it felt odd not to have a drink in my hand, I coped with the general chit-chat and social awkwardness much better than I expected. I'd always assumed that I needed a bit of alcohol to let my guard down a bit, but actually the party atmosphere does it for me. I also discovered that the way I get tired and grumpy towards the end of a party has nothing to do with what I've drunk: I got tired and grumpy towards the end of my father's 70th birthday party just because I was tired and grumpy.

On the other hand, there were days when I really fancied a pint. So there you go.

Since the beginning of February, I've also been happily taking lunch into work every single day. This never happens, and I'm really impressed. What I do is make up a large batch of soup on Sunday evening, either on the hob or in the slow cooker, and buy a packet of rolls on my way into work on Monday morning. Every day I take a bowlful of soup into work in a plastic tub, and heat it up in the microwave at lunchtime.

Once I'd got away from the idea that it had to be sandwiches, it was easy. I hate making sandwiches. Having to put that much effort in every day? No chance. But reducing the major effort to once a week, and making the minor effort something I do every day, so I can get into a routine, has worked really well.
stapsdoes101things: detail of a hymnbook page showing hymn no. 101, tune 'St Bernard' (101music)
28 January 2012

- Running a BookCrossing challenge for LGBT History Month. Nobody seems to have released anything yet, but it's early days, and I haven't managed to release anything either, so I can't talk. I have, however, begun to gather some goodies together to make prizes for the lucky winners.
- Having another go at writing 1001 words every day. The same rules apply as last time: journal entries, on or offline, and additions to my own writing projects, will count towards this; comments on other people's posts, or forum posts, won't.
- Seeing how far I get with the family guitar and a book entitled 'The Right Way to Play Guitar'.
- Going to see Richard III.
- Taking a packed lunch to work every day. (This is the one most likely to fall by the wayside, mostly because I only really decided to go for it today. On the other hand, this really is the time of year to make a big batch of soup in the slow cooker and take in a bowl's worth every day.)

Choosing such a short month as February to complete some of the 'Do X every day for a month' does feel like cheating, but it is at least a longer than average February. It's also a relatively quiet time work-wise and family-wise, and I think I've got a better chance of getting these goals done than I would in a lot of other months.
stapsdoes101things: Pizza with '101' marked out in green pimento (101food)
Why do I want to do this?

I'm notoriously disorganised, and with both Marks and Spencers and Tesco within spitting distance of my place of work, I find it difficult to keep up good lunch habits for more than a few days at a time. I'm hoping to change this.

How will I know I've done this?

Every working day for one whole calendar month, which will not include more than three days of annual leave and/or sick leave, I will have taken to work and eaten a lunch that I have prepared myself.

I'll record this in posts in this journal. (I'll try to make it interesting.)

August 2013

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