Day Zero Reboot: Week 1

This has not been the best first week of a Day Zero project.

In my own defense, it’s been a bit of a weird week, primarily driven by some events at work; put bluntly, the work-life balance got shot all to pieces. Fortunately, though, the situation in question has now been settled. As I write this, I’m on a four-day weekend, and the plan is to use this to bring things back under control. That today is the beginning of Camp NaNoWriMo should definitely help.

Another thing that should help is to update the few items I can.

3. Train as a tax preparer.

I emailed one of the local tax companies about a class that starts on September 11th but I have not yet heard back. One goal for this week will be to follow up with them.

18. Complete 150 shifts with cat rescue.

I’m in a bit of a holding pattern on this as, while I’m still listed as a volunteer with Half the Way Home (and definitely still want to volunteer with them), I’m not able to easily reach any of their current locations. I still intend to pursue this, but this week I also sent an email to Planned PEThood (whose office is on one of my alternate routes to and from work) to see about volunteer opportunities with them. My second goal for the week will be to follow up on this.

99. Make a weekly update each Saturday.

Here’s the first update!

Day Zero Reboot (2017-2020 Edition)

I’ve worked on Day Zero projects a couple of times before, but never completed them. Despite that, they helped me anyway by keeping me on track and giving me focus. Because of that, I’ve decided to go ahead and start a new one.

For those not familiar with the original Day Zero Project, here’s how it works:

The Challenge: Complete 101 tasks in 1,001 days
The Criteria: Tasks must be specific (ie. no ambiguity in the wording) with a result that is either measurable or clearly defined. Tasks must also be realistic and stretching (ie. represent some amount of work on your part).

My start date will be today, June 24, 2017. This gives me an end date of Saturday, March 21, 2020, which happens to be my forty-fifth birthday.

Here is the list:

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Depression is Insidious

One of the biggest problems about depressive episodes is that they can be insidious. They can sneak up silently and slowly, staying underneath any surface awareness until they’re well and truly entrenched. Mine are that way a lot; although I have a long list of items that I watch for as signs, I don’t catch them all. This happened recently, and was extremely distressing to not just me but to several of my friends and co-workers.

Fortunately, when it finally manifested itself openly, I hadn’t yet gotten down far enough to be unable to recognize what it was; thus I was able to take (and did take) immediate steps to address it.

There are any number of lists of depressive symptoms out there, and they’re fairly similar:

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First Harvest: Catnip

I’d been noticing over the last week that the catnip plant was starting to get a little out of control, but every time I was home it was either raining or dark. Fortunately, Mother Nature decided to cut us all a break and give us a weekend full of sun. That meant I was out on the stoop first thing Saturday morning with a pair of scissors.

Catnip leaves spread out on the drying racks

I ended up cutting away a lot of woody, leggy stems and throwing them out (along with a spider that had decided the plant was a good anchor for one of its webs). But there were enough nice, tender leaves among the trimmings to allow me to be picky about the ones I was going to dry. And picky I was: you can see here that I only chose intact leaves that were specific sizes, and that I tried to keep similar sizes together.

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