December 31st, 2008


2009 Resolutions

As in 2008 I will review my resolutions monthly and reassess them if needed.

I need to realise that 80% is good enough, I do not need to be 100%.

I find it useful to think about a set of personal commandments or guiding principles, resolutions and goals. Gretchen Rubin has written a great post on commandments and resolutions on her Happiness Project Blog.

2009 Commandments
Do not let the perfect be the enemy of the good
Baby Steps
Don't rehearse unhappiness
Der Weg ist das Ziel (the goal is the journey)

2009 Resolutions (which will lead to goals below)
Maintain food diary on fitbug
Achieve my fitbug steps per day (using
Practice yoga once a week
Care for my relationships - reach out to two friends a month

2009 Goals
Have a healthy pregnancy and enjoy the journey
Enjoy my life and find the right balance
Write the Research paper on the Samaritans
Go to the dentist!


I need to recognise and fight my own RESISTANCE.

How does my resistance show up?
- in my unceasing pessism - I deal with change and new challenges by always starting from the worst possible outcome
- In my procrastination, fear of starting
- In my using alcohol to dull my stress and overwork

How can I beat my resistance?
- Taking responsibility for my thinking and choosing a more realistic, optimistic viewpoint - and by cancelling my negative thinking
- not using alcohol to self medicate ie as a stress reliever
- Choosing to start small, but to continue consistently

How do I keep sane?
- Write regularly / blog daily (mental relief)
- walk daily (physical and mental relief)

Tweeting in the gaps


10:23 AM Dec 31st, 2008 am drinking peppermint tea and unpacking my suitcase!
2:04 PM Dec 29th, 2008 am sorting out my recipes and deciding whether to go food shopping!
10:47 AM Dec 29th, 2008 am about to have a christmas themed lush bath!
1:35 PM Dec 28th, 2008 am checking emails and updating my blog!
9:50 AM Dec 28th, 2008 am back home in Zurich after a lovely christmas with the family in Bristol and am now celebrating 8 lovely years of being married to mr.ncot
8:27 AM Dec 28th, 2008 am now straightening my hair, drinking hot chocolate and getting ready to leave!!
1:37 PM Dec 22nd, 2008 am now decorating the Christmas tree!
12:11 PM Dec 22nd, 2008 am wondering why I have such a huge suitcase and bag for 6 days at home, whilst mr.ncot has just an overnight bag. He will not be amused!
12:11 PM Dec 22nd, 2008 am drinking mulled wine tea from whittards - very yummy!
11:28 AM Dec 22nd, 2008 am now packing to go back to Blighty this evening!
8:43 AM Dec 22nd, 2008 am going to Paradeplatz to have coffee with a friend, or rather a "heisse Schoggi!"
6:24 AM Dec 22nd, 2008 am now awake, sitting in bed with a cup of tea, writing the last christmas cards!
3:47 AM Dec 22nd, 2008 clearing my inbox and am now going back to bed for a bit more kip!
2:30 AM Dec 22nd, 2008 am awake and suffering from insomnia!
1:27 AM Dec 22nd, 2008 am about to start writing the last batch of christmas cards and then to make star gift tags...
4:14 PM Dec 21st, 2008 am clearing my desk!
2:40 PM Dec 21st, 2008 am having breakfast in bed and planning my day!
5:36 AM Dec 21st, 2008 having sushi and a sneaky prosecco at globus after a blissful facial!
10:50 AM Dec 18th, 2008 am dialling into a conference call for work and after that I will be on holiday properly!
7:33 AM Dec 18th, 2008 am now on holiday!
4:19 AM Dec 18th, 2008 setting up my call diversion and out of office assamtant - it is still snowing outside :-)
11:51 AM Dec 17th, 2008 Walking to work in the deep snow!
3:50 AM Dec 17th, 2008 am finally leaving the (again deserted) office for the day! Just one more day and then i am on HOLIDAY!!
2:27 PM Dec 16th, 2008 am working alone in a quiet, deserted office, but am not feeling terribly inspired or motivated!
7:42 AM Dec 15th, 2008 am making handmade christmas cards!
6:42 PM Dec 14th, 2008 am doing the christmas food shopping online at Tesco with my Mum, over the phone!
3:37 PM Dec 14th, 2008 am cooking chilli con carne!
4:20 PM Dec 13th, 2008 am drinking chocolate flavoured Rooibush tea - very odd, but strangely drinkable!
11:52 AM Dec 13th, 2008 am succumbing to my cold and am snuffling pathetically!
5:54 PM Dec 11th, 2008 am fighting a cold, but cooking vegetable ragout with red wine and rosemary!
3:57 PM Dec 10th, 2008 am now finally going to bed!
7:32 PM Dec 8th, 2008 am now back to making more silver decorations for the PWG party tomorrow!
5:07 PM Dec 8th, 2008 am putting the December Networker too bed - finally!
5:05 PM Dec 8th, 2008 am feeling a bit bleurgh and tired, but am just starting to cook "Roasted pork chops with root vegetables (thanks "Zest"!)
2:20 PM Dec 8th, 2008 am again awake and suffering from insomnia
8:45 PM Dec 7th, 2008 am drinking peppermint tea and contemplating tacking the ironing!
6:02 PM Dec 6th, 2008 am eating porridge - not too hot, not too cold, just right .-)
6:12 AM Dec 6th, 2008 am off for a bath - I like this working from home thing!
7:31 AM Dec 5th, 2008 am blasting through a ton of work emails that have accumulated in the 3 days I have been away!
6:19 AM Dec 5th, 2008 am up bright and early, since I am "working from home", sorry, working from bed!!
3:43 AM Dec 5th, 2008 am off to bed, i have had a busy old day!
5:55 PM Dec 4th, 2008 am slobbling on the sofa with ice cream, maltesers and peppermint tea :-)
11:28 AM Dec 4th, 2008 am well rested after a good night's sleep!
6:00 AM Dec 4th, 2008 am tucked up in my bed again, with trusty laptop
6:23 AM Dec 3rd, 2008 am awake again and feeling rather groggy, off for some porridge .-)
4:39 AM Dec 3rd, 2008 am still awake and suffering very badly tonight from insomnia. Have tried everything! Now given up and staying awake until dawn
12:34 AM Dec 3rd, 2008 am finally going to bed
8:04 PM Dec 2nd, 2008 am updating my google profile ( - thanks to Gretchen Rubin for the tip (
3:57 PM Dec 2nd, 2008 am resting in bed, drinking peppermint tea, keeping warm and eating a chocolate muffin - bliss!
1:33 PM Dec 2nd, 2008 am making christmas decorations for the PWG 25th anniversary party on Dec 9th -->

2:16 PM Nov 30th, 2008 am doing the mountain of ironing :-(
11:06 AM Nov 30th, 2008 am doing my christmas shopping on Amazon
9:13 AM Nov 30th, 2008 am in bed with my laptop, blogging away :-) oh, and a nice cup of rooibus tea
7:51 AM Nov 30th, 2008 am now suffering from ear ache...
7:13 AM Nov 30th, 2008 am going back to bed to sleep it off....
10:23 AM Nov 29th, 2008 am getting a cold :-(
8:22 AM Nov 29th, 2008 am finished writing and am now off for a "lush" bath - HURRAH BLOODY HA!
5:04 PM Nov 25th, 2008 am writing the last article for the Networker - thank goodness. Next time I WILL not leave it so late! I will plan ahead....
4:10 PM Nov 25th, 2008 still editing....
6:02 PM Nov 24th, 2008 am editing the December Networker for PWG which is a long overdue task!
4:40 PM Nov 24th, 2008 am feeling happy for no good reason, except that life seems to be good!
3:17 PM Nov 24th, 2008 am about to have nice long hot bath with a good book!
1:12 PM Nov 23rd, 2008 am trying to write a very overdue book review of "The Search" by John Battelle: [www_amazon_co_uk]
3:15 PM Nov 22nd, 2008 am emptying, cleaning and repacking my "school bag"
1:22 PM Nov 22nd, 2008 am waiting for mr.ncot to finally get home so we can eat, plus doing some shopping on the internet!
5:31 PM Nov 19th, 2008 am waiting for my pizza to cook and am trying to simultaneously work on my home and work laptops
3:36 PM Nov 17th, 2008 am packing my bag for "school" tomorrow !
3:18 PM Nov 16th, 2008 am drinking peppermint tea
11:20 AM Nov 16th, 2008 am in bed, in pain, feeling very sorry for myself!
11:03 AM Nov 16th, 2008 am back home again after a bit of shopping trip!
1:03 PM Nov 15th, 2008 am unsubscribing from all the "spam" ie subscription mails that land in my gmail box
9:25 AM Nov 15th, 2008 am glad to be going home after a long and tiring Friday
12:04 PM Nov 14th, 2008 am waiting for my last load of laundry to finish, before I can go to bed
6:33 PM Nov 13th, 2008 waiting for the acupuncturist
2:14 PM Nov 13th, 2008 finished doing a very quick vacuum of the flat, the dust bunnies have been banished!
1:52 PM Nov 13th, 2008 drinking horrible work coffee in a desperate bid to stay awake
10:26 AM Nov 13th, 2008 running a bath
6:45 PM Nov 11th, 2008 have been clearing my desk, sorting my finances and may now go to bed .-)
7:04 PM Nov 10th, 2008 have finally cleared my gmail inbox - now just have to clear my desk of paperwork
3:39 PM Nov 10th, 2008
3:15 PM Nov 10th, 2008 Listening and signing along to Aerosmith :-)
3:14 PM Nov 10th, 2008 drinking camomile tea, updating podcasts and should be going to bed !
7:23 PM Nov 9th, 2008 have been battling jetlag - slept, read, bathed, cried, slept again, unpacked, packed for "school" tomorrow and am now ready to eat
3:45 PM Nov 9th, 2008 am finally back home after my travels to Poland and Canada
11:48 AM Nov 9th, 2008 Sitting at montreal airport, having a spot of lunch in the business lounge!
4:08 PM Nov 8th, 2008 Awake because of the insomnia and the memorial - remembering gerry's life. Gerry channer has left the building...
7:16 AM Nov 8th, 2008 Waking up after a long sleep! Long day ahead...
11:22 AM Nov 7th, 2008 have finally landed at ottawa!
6:02 PM Nov 6th, 2008 Getting on flight to ottawa!! Finally:-)
9:27 AM Nov 6th, 2008 Having the journey from hell-waiting for the flight to frankfurt, delayed by fog!
7:12 AM Nov 6th, 2008 Ecstatic that my luggage turned up against the odds and that i am in a taxi hotel bound!
7:02 PM Nov 2nd, 2008 have finally arrived at wroclaw after a very delayed and foggy journey!
6:48 PM Nov 2nd, 2008 finishing packing and ready to head off to Poland - Wroclaw here I come :-) - again
11:15 AM Nov 2nd, 2008 getting ready to put my sister on the train back to the airport :-(
6:56 AM Nov 2nd, 2008 eating indian takeaway from
5:14 PM Nov 1st, 2008 updated
4:39 PM Nov 1st, 2008 clearing my desk, sorting my finances, doing admin and generally getting ready to travel to Poland tomorrow, then onto Canada on Thursday
3:55 PM Nov 1st, 2008 shopping at Sihlcity and eating the first sweet chestnuts of the winter
1:45 PM Nov 1st, 2008 changing the black printer cartidge and complaining about the cold
9:41 AM Nov 1st, 2008 updating the pwg website (finally!)
6:06 AM Nov 1st, 2008 scanning photos of Gerry
5:27 AM Nov 1st, 2008 have finally got home and am about to eat and chill and drink

4:38 PM Oct 31st, 2008 getting ready for poland and am finally leaving work at 8pm on Friday evening!
4:01 PM Oct 31st, 2008 drinking cappuchino and working in the "Four Point by Smyaton" hotel lobby all day
12:19 PM Oct 31st, 2008 feeling very relaxed after a day at the Panorama Spa -
6:15 PM Oct 30th, 2008 looking at the snow in the garden
4:30 AM Oct 30th, 2008 watching the sleety snow fall (first of the season)
4:20 PM Oct 29th, 2008 Waiting for little miss ncot (my sister!) to arrive at the airport
2:25 PM Oct 29th, 2008 listening to mr.ncot and his dad arguing over us financial policy and updating my blogs
2:16 PM Oct 24th, 2008 On the bus to dun laoghaire and it's a beautiful crisp, clear, blue, autumn day!
8:06 AM Oct 24th, 2008 am off to Dublin to see the nieces and Family!
2:49 AM Oct 24th, 2008 am trying to pack for a weekend in Dublin
5:29 PM Oct 23rd, 2008 am enjoying the peace of an empty office (everyone is "unterwegs") and am listening to bbc radio 6music on my headphones :-)
11:49 AM Oct 23rd, 2008 am trying to fill in the self evaluation performance tool - without much success. Roll on home time..
10:00 AM Oct 23rd, 2008 waiting for supper to be delivered and feeling very relaxed after a Globus facial
4:38 PM Oct 22nd, 2008 am listening to Vienna (and other 80s hits) on :-)
7:50 PM Oct 21st, 2008 am updating various sites when I should really be tucked up in my bed!
7:50 PM Oct 21st, 2008 am surfing the web when I should be leaving for work
3:50 AM Oct 19th, 2008 am finally back at home with hubbie!
4:59 PM Oct 18th, 2008 am waiting at triemli hospital to pick up hubbie after a bit of a diabetic bump ;-( he is okay ...
11:52 AM Oct 18th, 2008 have just picked up my bike - freshly serviced, new saddle, bell and pump :-)
10:37 AM Oct 18th, 2008 am going into town to run some errands
9:55 AM Oct 18th, 2008 am having a long gossipy chat with mummy ncot :-)
9:34 AM Oct 18th, 2008 have just had my hair cut and coloured - dark brown - may take some getting used to!
8:49 AM Oct 18th, 2008 am waking up after 14 hours sleep but bizarelly stil have a headache!
5:32 AM Oct 18th, 2008 am still suffering from a headache and am now leaving work for the weekend.
2:07 PM Oct 17th, 2008 am struggling to stay awake and have a headache :-(
11:26 AM Oct 17th, 2008 am just about to have pasta and a glass of wine, snuggled up on the sofa with mr.ncot
3:20 PM Oct 16th, 2008 am soaked through and cold and want to get home and jump into a warm bubble bath!
2:32 PM Oct 16th, 2008 am wiahing that the rain would stop and my colleagues would be a bit quieter!
10:05 AM Oct 16th, 2008 am eating my breakfast and reading mails
3:07 AM Oct 16th, 2008 have realised that I have mislaid a memory stick, with work data on :-(
3:50 PM Oct 15th, 2008 have just got home from work and am drinking swiss lemsip
3:46 PM Oct 15th, 2008 am unable to login to work systems - gaargh, so much for being efficient and working at home :-(
1:36 PM Oct 14th, 2008 am delighting in the fact that we now have light again in the hallway! No more doom and gloom for us...
11:14 AM Oct 14th, 2008 am waiting for the electrician
9:49 AM Oct 14th, 2008 am walking home in the sun, being overtaken by joggers!
8:45 AM Oct 14th, 2008 Wonders whether I can get flickr to import to twitter?
8:44 AM Oct 14th, 2008 packing up and getting ready to go leave - will be working from home this afternoon
8:12 AM Oct 14th, 2008 am calling it a day and taking my sorry body to bed...
6:30 PM Oct 13th, 2008 am still confused by the interaction of twitter and facebook and why I can't get it to automatically save text as one line text...
6:10 PM Oct 13th, 2008 am in more pain, have eaten, taken painkillers and am back on the sofa with mr.ncot
3:31 PM Oct 13th, 2008 am getting rather sleepy *yawn*
3:26 PM Oct 13th, 2008 am back in bed with hot water bottle, laptop, chocolate croissant and peppermint tea :-)
2:22 PM Oct 13th, 2008 am printing and collating handouts for my intercultural course on Thursday.
11:44 AM Oct 13th, 2008 trying to digest lunch and printing out participant lists for my courses this week
9:31 AM Oct 13th, 2008 Still awake, pain is going down - will try and get another hour's sleep before work
1:01 AM Oct 13th, 2008 am awake and in PAIN
12:39 AM Oct 13th, 2008 am still trying to update my many and various websites, although it is probably best to give up and go to bed :-/
7:45 PM Oct 12th, 2008 am lamtening to
7:16 PM Oct 12th, 2008 needs to get to bed, pronto...
7:13 PM Oct 12th, 2008 am enjoying a nice glass of red win
7:13 PM Oct 12th, 2008 have just damcovered - very funky!
7:13 PM Oct 12th, 2008 trying to coordinate all my websites!

Books read 2008

Books Read in 2008: 109
Planet of the Blind: Stephen Kuusisto
My friend Leonard: James Frey
People of the Book: Geraldine Brooks
The Bridge of San Luis Rey: Thornton Wilder
The Year of Magical Thinking: Joan Didion
Black Dog: Stephen Booth
All in the Mind: Alastair Campbell
Zita West's Guide to getting pregnant: Zita West
The Best Friends' Guide to Pregnancy": Vicke Lovine
Prodigal Summer: Barbara Kingsolver
Brain Rules: John Medina
Creative Journal Writing: Stephanie Dowrick
Back of the Napkin: Dan Roam
Regeneration: Pat Barker
Various Miracles: Carol Shields
Being Elizabeth Bennett: Emma Campbell Webster
The Frozen Lake: Elizabeth Edmondson
Caravans: James A. Mitchener
Zermatt: Frank Schaeffer
The Diving-Bell and the Butterfly: Jean-Dominique Bauby
The Point of Rescue: Sophie Hannah
My Best Friend's Girl: Dorothy Koomson
A Whole New Mind: Daniel H.Pink
The Delivery Room: Sylvia Brownrigg
Heart and Soul: Maeve Binchy
Johnny Bunko: Daniel H.Pink
Acid Row: Minette Walters
The Last Lecture: Randy Pausch
Thanks for the memories: Cecilia Ahern
The Friday Night Knitting Club: Kate Jacobs
Doruntine: Ismail Kadare
Human Croquet: Kate Atkinson
Riding the Waves of Culture: Fons Trompenaars
The Lemon Table: Julian Barnes
Shakespeare: Bill Bryson
Girlfriends: Berry and Traeder
Night Train to Lisbon: Pascal Mercier
Smoke and Mirrors: Neil Gaiman
Give your speech, change the world: Nick Morgan
The Mermaid Chair: Sue Monk Kidd
Deafening: Frances Itani
Snow Flower and the Secret Fan: Lisa See
The Search: John Battelle
Sex, Lies and Online Dating: Rachel Gibson
Little Earthquakes: Jennifer Weiner
Kabul Beauty School: Deborah Rodriguez
Deaf Sentence: David Lodge
The Beach House: Jane Green
The Lost Art of Keeping Secrets: Eva Rice
Gentian Hill: Elizabeth Goudge
Lipstick Jungle: Candace Bushell
If you could see me now: Cecelia Ahern
Desert Flower: Waris Dirie
The Amateur Marriage: Anne Tyler
Days Before Dibley: Jill Swallow
The Love of Her Life: Harriet Evans
Communities of Practice - Critical Perspectives: ed Jason Hughes, Nick Jewson, Lorna Unwin
The Wisdom of Crowds: James Surowiecki
The Ghost: Robert Harris
The Spa Decameron: Fay Weldon
Things I want my Daughters to Know: Elizabeth Noble
The Tipping Point: Malcolm Gladwell
The Pilot's Wife: Anita Shreve
At her Majesty's Pleasure: Robert Douglas
Atlantic Shift: Emily Barr
Engleby: Sebastian Faulks
A Voice for Now: Anne Dickson
The Year of Magical Thinking: Joan Didion, based on her memoir
A Short History of Tractors in Ukranian: Marina Lewycka
Finding Sanctuary: Abbot Christopher Jamison
Do nothing to change your Life: Stephen Cottrell
Diary of an Ordinary Woman: Margaret Foster
Eat, Pray and Love: Elizabeth Gilbert
Snowleg: Nicholas Shakespeare
This Charming Man: Marian Keyes
Pillow Talk: Freya North
Secret Life of Bees: Sue Monk Kidd
Second Chance: Jane Green
The Widow and her Hero: Thomas Keneally
Goodbye, Johnny Thunders: Tania Kindersley
Lessons in Heartbreak: Cathy Kelly
Willing Slaves: Madeleine Bunting
And God created the Au Pair: Bénédicte Newland & Pascale Smets
Presentation Zen: Garr Reynolds
The Myth of the Paperless Office: Abigail J. Sellen & Richard H.R. Harper
Goodnight Nobody: Jennifer Weiner
The Pythons: The Pythons
Ways to Live Forever: Sally Nicholls
The Little Prisoner: Jane Elliott
Monster Love: Carol Topolski
Power Play: Joseph Finder
Wonderboy: Fiona Gibson
On Beauty: Zadie Smith
Do not pass go: Tim Moore
Gebrauchsanweisung für die Schweiz: Thomas Küng
The Second Assistant: Clare Naylor and Mimi Hare
Of Mice and Men: John Steinbeck
The Stone Diaries: Carol Shields
Eat, Pray and Love: Elizabeth Gilbert
The Three Signs of a Miserable Job: Patrick Lencioni
Lachlan's War: Michael Cannon
Out of my Depth: Emily Barr
Great Apes: Will Self
Self's Punishment: Bernhard Schlink
Gebrauchsanweisung für London: Ronald Reng
Work and Life Balance: Harvard Review
War crimes for the home: Liz Jensen
Misadventures in a white desert: Patrick Woodhead
Bird by Bird: Anne Lamont