Sunday, April 07, 2019

Sunday #74: Bonjour Avril

Hello, April!  I am not sure where the time went, but I've now lived in Seattle for a full year!  I remember how lonely it felt when I initially moved here, but I've settled into a routine, like my apartment, found my gym, and made friends.  With the exception that my partner is still far away, it's decent here.  I'm also stoked about breaking through the Seattle Freeze to meet so many wonderful people!

I.  My partner came to visit me at the end of March.  We saw Captain Marvel (highly recommend) and went to visit the Washington Park Arboretum in Seattle.  It's been awhile since I've photographed plants or trees so I decided to bring my camera.  I am experimenting with different floral shots that aren't just "zoom in on this flower and create bokeh."  For a long time, I sought to create images that are bright and full of light (both consciously and subconsciously leaning towards the Instagram-friendly aesthetic), but I've been purposefully including more shadows and darks in my images.  I like the starkness of contrast.

II.  When I decompress, I alternate between watching brainless TV or cerebral shows.  I am a huge fan of the show The OA.  Season 2 premiered on Netflix in March.  I've been rewatching it in the evenings to see what details I've missed because the show is so complex.  I like science fiction that is within the realm of believability (though we can argue that aspects of this show are a stretch of the imagination).  Quantum superposition + many-worlds interpretation?  Sign me up.  Do you have recommendations for shows that are similar to The OA?

III.  In the past few months, I've improved my relationship with exercise.  Exercising has become a way for me to take time to myself, the 45 to 90 minutes in a day I get to focus solely on moving and improving my body.  Anyone who brings up exercising with me gets an earful because I'm so excited to talk about it.  I have been doing workouts with some friends.  It's rewarding and fun!  I'm so enthusiastic talking about it that recently someone asked if I wanted to train clients for several hours a week at a wellness company.  Alas, I am not a certified trainer, but this got me thinking about getting certification from NASM.  It's expensive, though, and I already have a lot of other hobbies and interests (not to mention a full-time job).  Maybe somewhere down the line?  However, expect to see fitness-themed content here very soon!

IV.  Speaking of full-time work, I've been doubling down on learning biology recently.  I work in both chemistry and biology groups.  Now that I've largely wrapped up my chemistry work, I want to dedicate all my focus on biology.  There's a steep learning curve with biology (or any branch of science) so I have been making it a goal to read more, aiming for 3 to 5 scientific journal articles a day.  I figure if I'm not leisure reading, I should read academically.  My goal is just to read every single day.  Good for the soul, good for the brain.

V.  Setting some goals for this week: not eating out or spending money with the exception of a Friday night dinner.  I've been noticing how much I eat out which is neither good for my health or wallet.  I have plans to get ramen with coworkers later this evening.  After that, I'm going to meal prep and work for the rest of the evening to prepare for Monday.  My other intentions this week are to exercise 5X, read 10 to 15 new academic articles, and to gain traction on my biology work.  Let's make this a productive week!


•  Natalie's guide on how to henna your hair.
•  Michelle's 4 Ways to Keep A Blog (from a few weeks ago) that the community found useful!
•  Downtown by Majical Cloudz which is the most calming song on earth.

What are your intentions for the week ahead?


  1. I watched Captain Marvel with my family just a few days ago! I didn't know anything about the plot or have any expectations going in. Really enjoyed it :)

    3-5 scientific journals a day is such a great goal! I remember that whenever I had to read scientific journals for school, I would have to totally zone in and be a really active reader in order to process anything.

    Wishing you a productive week ahead! -Audrey | Brunch at Audrey's

  2. I have yet to see Captain Marvel but I've heard great things about it! I'm a little indifferent about it though... maybe actually seeing the movie will make me feel different.

    Also, love that even after your PhD you're still finding ways to grow and learn more not just as a scientist but as a person ;D Too much knowledge never hurt nobody.

  3. the first photo is ethereal. how??? been so long since i've seen your photos in my ig feed (screw algorithm) and you've grown so much. i am proud of you T_T and your workout! seeing you work out already made me feel healthier. you progressed so well too. i can't wait to see your fitness content! hoping you're well! <3

  4. Hi there, I saw Captain Marvel as well and on word - awesome! Hahaha I'm a homebased designer so I really don't get much walking and exercise so I try to use our stationary bike at home as much as possible. I agree with you that it feels good physically and emotionally hahah

    marielle was here

  5. "zoom in on this flower and create bokeh" I feel so seen LOL
    Honestly, I've come to accept darkness and shadows in my photos too. It adds a nice contrast to the photo, and is more "life-like", I think.

    I've been a lifelong avoider of working out, but I started using the school gym a while back and though I hate dying on the stair climbers, it made me really happy seeing results from these sessions. Muscle definition! Unfortunately I've stopped since I'm doing a few internships now, but I can't wait to go back to the school gym and not sit for 8 hours!

    "aiming for 3 to 5 scientific journal articles a day" I think my brain just broke omg

  6. Aw sounds amazing <3 Haven't seen Captain Marvel yet but I def should soon.

    Hannah / Words & Latte

  7. I can't believe how fast time flies! It's great to hear that your job has been well and you're learning a lot! DR. ALYSE!!! It's pretty cool that you're considering on becoming a trainer! Keep doing well, girl!

    Nancy ♥

  8. I love the shots in this post, Alyse :) It's easy for flower photos to all look the same, but you really nailed it! Gosh, I'm the same and need to cut down on eating out... It's especially hard when I'm at work and don't have time to meal prep, but I'm hoping to make it a habit in the future!

    Mani /

  9. I haven't watched Captain Marvel, yet and I'm dying to see it because Avengers Endgame is right around the corner! Anyway, I love the photos it's very beautiful, I wish I can take pictures like that good.

    Only Yesterday