10 things I would do with more hours in the day

I’m departing from the usual in this blog, and especially the tone of my most recent post (though perhaps recent isn’t the best word) to bring you something silly and fun. Silly and fun? you ask. Why yes, I am capable. I know it might be a surprise. So without further ado, here are ten things I would do if there were one, maybe two more hours in the day.

1. Exercise more: I’m trying to be more active, to do at least one physical thing each day. Mostly because I miss the way certain parts of my body used to look, no small bit because it’s rather embarrassing when I’m winded after two flights of stairs (and I NEVER take the elevator), but also because I spend way too much time sitting each day. With more time in each day I would go on more bike rides, go on more walks with my dogs, finally start an ab program that I stayed faithful to.

2. Learn more: It’s no secret right now that I’m learning French (I try to spend at least 15 minutes a day on it), but less well-known is the fact that I have a stack of old textbooks that I have every intention of reading. Sitting on my shelf right now I have books on chemistry, organic chemistry, biology, linguistics, feminist theory, and literature. And yeah, when I do find the time to pull one of those out, I do the exercises.

3. Bake more: I love to bake, especially bread. And not with a bread machine either. No, you’ve got to get your hands in there. It’s the physical connection, the smell—the absolutely yummy food you get to eat. I can’t even think of the last thing I baked, though. Maybe those ginger molasses cookies at Christmas?

4. Play more video games: I really try to make an effort to not spend too much time in front of the television—TV doesn’t interest me all that much unless it’s the Food Network—but I do have a soft spot for certain video games. But right now I do limit my time rather severely. Plus—and this has nothing to do with how much time there is or isn’t in the day—my Xbox is broken right now.

5. Sleep more: I like to sleep, I do. But I also am not a fan of sleeping in until 11. I like to be up by 9:30 at the latest, but when I stay up reading until 4 a.m. some nights, I end up really tired the next day. I really do need my full eight hours.

6. Be more social: Sometimes I think my friends must think I don’t want to hang out with them, because I’m very good at being busy when they call. With more time I could better show them that, yes, I care.

7. Straighten my hair more: Okay, I know this one sounds silly, but I stopped straightening my hair regularly about the time I started graduate school. There were just other things that needed to be done—it felt silly to spend half an hour with a straightening iron in front of the bathroom mirror. But—call me vain—I really do love having straight hair.

8. Spend more time on forgotten or new hobbies: I’m really, really good at filling my time. And there are so many things in life I wish I could try, could be good at. Take my guitar playing. It was a hobby for a few years, but now I hardly ever touch it. And I’d really like to finish that one cross stitch piece I started four or so years ago. And I’d really like to learn more about history. And I wish I knew how to use Flash. I wish I could identify the birds that come to our bird feeder without looking in the book. There’s so much knowledge out there, and I really do want it pretty much all of it.

9. Read more: I have so many books that I want to read, and yet I don’t often seem to have the time to really dive in to books. Oh, I read pretty much daily, and I do spend some nights reading when I should be sleeping (see number 5), but I wish I had time enough that I am able to read faster than I buy books.

10. Write more: Too much lately this has been the first thing falling off my plate. I’ve got work, I want to write a book review, I try to stay networked, I’ve got errands to run, I’ve got to plan for that community ed class I want to teach in the fall… I’ve got to do this, I’ve got to do that. My family/friends want to spend time with me. The dog is lonely. I’ve got another darn migraine. And somehow, too much of my writing is being done in my head. Despite being number 10, this is the number one reason I’d like more time. Though I do worry that even with all the time in the world, I’d still find reasons (numbers 1-9 for starters) to put off writing.

But I’m working on it. I promise.

Christmas and new blog

Well it’s been a crazy month-and-a-half since I last posted. Joel moved back to Michigan, I spent two-and-a-half weeks at home, then came back to WA for my next-to-last quarter at EWU. And it was straight back to work with thesis meetings, a new class (nonfiction workshop), and lots of Willow Springs work.

Katie and Sophie

Sophie trying to escape my clutches in November 2008.

Being home was fantastic. I made friends with Sophie (!). She still barked at me every morning when I came upstairs, but by mid-afternoon she was jumping up on the couch with me. Other than my dog befriending activities, I spent a lot of time relaxing. I think I did five 1,000 piece jigsaw puzzles. I also got hooked on Dollhouse. For Christmas I got so many books I couldn’t bring them all back to WA. And a sweet digital camera that I can’t wait to start using.

Back in Washington, the end is looming. My thesis looks way closer this side of Christmas. In nonfiction workshop I’m facing my fear of writing essays meant to be read by other people. For Willow Springs, we launched our new blog, and it took way more work to have ready than I’d expected, but it’s going fantastically well so far. I post on Mondays, so you should all go check those out. This week I talk about Amazon’s decision to pull all Macmillan books from its site. You can still buy the books, but only through third party sellers.