A TL;DR Update on the Last Few Months

Wow, has it really been since April?

Sorry to neglect you, readers. It turns out that the last month of leaving a job, and the following weeks can be quite overwhelming. This entry may be a little all over the place but I wanted to post and update on where I’ve been and what’s going on.

A TL;DR Recap of the last two months:

– Meditation: Total fail. I fell out of the habit when a friend was in town and never got back to it. I am hoping to start again and stick to it this time because I definitely feel a negative difference without it.

– Art: Ugh, another fail. I lost inspiration a few weeks into Life Book and decided to take a break. I think this was a major mistake. I haven’t made much art in the last 2-3 months besides some sketching here and there. Now that I am back from my trip I am hoping to really start pumping out some artwork, or at least practicing more regularly. I am excited to start working on the many many Life Book classes I have missed during my hiatus. Be on the look out for updates. Yell at me if you don’t see them.

– Insane Fitbit Step goal of 3000 miles in 2015: I have mostly stuck to this except for a lull during the first two weeks of May when I cut my foot open and knicked something arterial (blood spray everywhere, it was awful). Six stitches later I was on my way to recovery, but it was a total pain and kept me out of aerials (can’t climb with stitches because it relies on your feet) and messed up my workouts. I slowed down a bit over vacation as well but am still on track.


One of the more interesting places I’ve gotten my Fitbit Steps in this summer. This was in Tulum, Mexico.

– Overall fitness: Going really well. I have become addicted to my gym routine and classes. Running has been a fail since I cut my foot open, but I’m doing a ton of cardio in other ways so I am not too sad about it right now. It helps a lot that I have a really fantastic gym crew to keep me accountable and make working out fun. On days when I’m tired they inspire me to make it to class, and vice versa.

– Diet/Cooking/Whatever: As a result of my increased fitness schedule I have had to really watch my food intake and started tracking my Macronutrients using the Lose It App. I discovered I’ve never consumed enough protein and now that I am paying attention to it I am slimming down and building muscle easily. I feel great and I get to eat a lot of delicious foods. It’s less of a “diet” and more of “nutrition for dummies who don’t know how to balance their meals” in my opinion. And it’s got me cooking regularly! I wake up every morning, plan my meals, and walk to the Reading Terminal (a local market with produce/meats/etc) to get fresh food. It’s really wonderful.

I have mostly been eating a ton of chicken, but this salad (Arugula, Beets, Blueberries, Honey goat cheese, walnuts, and honey) has been another recent staple. So so good.

I have mostly been eating a ton of chicken, but this salad (Arugula, Beets, Blueberries, Honey goat cheese, walnuts, and honey) has been another recent staple. So so good.

I want everything beets all of the time.

I want everything beets all of the time.

– Science Retirement: This has been really bittersweet. I am happy to never have to do any more animal work again, but I already miss my colleagues. Fortunately, I can still see them around town, at the gym (Hi Miguel!), and at happy hour. I spent my first weekend off in Old Town Alexandria having a blast and continuing a new tradition for the beginning of June. Then I spent the first two weeks of June discovering how much of an adjustment not having a job is. I had all this time but felt like I was never getting enough done! It’s still really weird to not be going to work, but I am staying busy making professional connections and working on finding a job that is going to make me happy. I feel really positive and inspired about the future.


The Capital Wheel in National Harbor. We tried to go last year but the line was too long.

What my days recently look like. A lot of time at coffee shops researching and applying for jobs.

What my days recently look like. A lot of time at coffee shops researching and applying for jobs.

– Job Hunt:  Just before leaving work I had the opportunity to interview with a company I really admire, The Action Mill. I discovered The Action Mill when they hosted some QS meetups at their office and the first time I ever walked in I proclaimed “I have to work here.” I spent a few years asking here and there when they would have some room to hire me but they hadn’t had any openings until very recently. The interview process was easier than most, and even fun at some points because I am friends with the partners. Unfortunately, the position went to someone else, but it was still an honor to even be considered and such a great experience overall. So, I haven’t found a job yet, but feel I am making the right moves and I made a ton of really great connections at the recent Global Quantified Self Conference in San Francisco so I know something will work out sooner rather than later. I have so so much to say about QS in general and about the conference, but that will come in a near future post.

Pimp your QS15 Badge

Pimp your QS15 Badge

Pimp your QS15 Badge

Pimp your QS15 Badge

– My First Vacation in WAY too long: I left Philadelphia on June 15th to head to San Francisco to attend the 2015 Global Quantified Self conference. There will be a separate entry about this soon. What I will say now is that the conference was completely life changing. I made so many positive connections, both professional and personal. San Francisco is such a magical city and I can really see myself relocating and staying there. I left San Francisco June 23rd and after a very long layover in Phoenix, I was off to Mexico. It was my first time in Mexico, and my first time in a country where English is not the native language (I haven’t traveled much). Again, I will have an entire blog entry about Mexico, but for now I will say that it was one of the most difficult and overwhelming experiences of my life. I’ve never traveled alone and it was really intimidating but I DID IT. Sometimes it was fun, other times it was hard, but I’m home now and I think it was one of those really influential life experiences that shapes you as a person.

Interesting San Francisco sights

Interesting San Francisco sights

San Francisco magic at Point Bonita.

San Francisco magic at Point Bonita.


One of many stops on my Fish Taco tour of Tulum. This was at the Papaya Playa Project.


Tulum was inundated with sea weed due to a bunch of big storms just before I got there. It was still beautiful.

So now I’m back in Philadelphia and readjusting to real life and figuring out what’s next. I’ve woken up three times now really disoriented in my room having no idea where I was. I guess this is what happens when you leave for two weeks. I’m looking forward to finally having time to sit and write, and to give more thorough updates on QS15 and my trip to Mexico.

What have y’all been up to these last few months? Any exciting things going on this summer?


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About tamarahala

Tamara is currently living in Pennsylvania working as a Scheduling Coordinator/Payroll Supervisor with Live Nation Entertainment. Looking for fun short-term opportunities during the off season from November to March.

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