Eric made strawberry toffee this weekend and we had some strawberries left over. They weren’t great on their own (out of season fruit is never as good as the real thing) but puréed with sugar they were great. The hand-held mixer is good for more than just baby food.

There are lots of mommy blogs out there. (That’s mommy, not mummy, since the vast majority are American.) Some are well written, others are self-centred rants, but most of them are really very similar to each other and try to convince the readers that this baby is the wackiest one out there. I haven’t found any that make for interesting long-term reading, unless the reader knows the mommy or the baby.

One thing almost all of them have in common is that they post regular letters to the baby. I too have my monthly updates, but they are for myself in the future, and for my friends and family: this is what is Ingrid is up to right now. I do not pretend that I am talking to her.

If the post is not a letter to the baby, why pretend it is? And if it is, why post it publicly?

Wednesdays are, I think, the least eventful days of my week. They are this-day-also-happened, nothing-in-particular, not-worth-remembering days. Today was another one of those.

I was really hungry today, and have been for several days. If it wasn’t so unlikely, I’d almost start wondering whether I might be pregnant again. Or maybe just a growth spurt?

Spent half the day debugging an issue that kept crashing Excel. It was crashing so reliably and regularly that my assembly actually got blacklisted in the .NET security policy control panel: after a while it was denied execution permission and I had to manually enable it again. Which is kind of cool, actually. (I did find the issue, although I don’t really understand what caused it.)

A building on Leadenhall Street has lost its bottom half. Now it looks like a mushroom. It looks impossible, like it should fall down – very obviously demonstrating that some parts of a building are load bearing and others are just… decoration.

Apparently it is being demolished to make space for another skyscraper. (I say “another” because it will be standing right next to the Gherkin and quite close to Tower 42, which is the building you can see in the background in the photo.) Given that the top of the mushroom looks about as boring and box-shaped as an office building can look, and that I cannot even recall what the bottom half looked like (apart from the fact that the ground floor used to house an M&S Simply Food shop, and that it had a sign for Banca Monte dei Paschi di Siena, which I remember only because BMPS is the oldest surviving bank in the world, founded in the 1400s)… given all that, I’m sure the new building will be an improvement on the old one.

(Oh… it seems I was being a bit harsh here. Apparently “on completion, the building was considered to be one of the most sophisticated examples of a glass-walled office building in England”. Well I guess it was great for 1969… but it isn’t exactly an example of timeless design.)

But I do wonder why they are demolishing it from the bottom up and not from the top down, or from the outside in, or the inside out. It seems like a very strange approach to taking down a building.

Rain all day again, but I ignored it and went out anyway. Rain is not so bad.

Tried to catch up with work but all sorts of things broke (drives not available, which led to applications crashing and others not starting at all) so I couldn’t do anything at all.

Dinner: nut burgers, new potatoes, and sweetcorn in a creamy sauce with garam masala.

Memories fade fast. In my brain, positive memories generally fade faster than negative ones.

It’s been three weeks since I read a book of fiction. Whenever this happens, whenever more than just a few days pass between books, I start to forget how good it feels to read. Starting on the next book, even choosing a book to read, begins to seem not worth the effort. I have to remind myself that I like reading, and tell myself to just read a teensy little bit. Once I do that, the joy comes flooding back and I keep reading the book and finish it and pick up the next one and the next. And then I am baffled as to how I could possibly have forgotten that warm feeling.

The same happens with working out. It is so easy to think about what a bother it would be to find my clothes… and to pack… and to go to the gym or sports club… and how tired I will be afterwards… and forget just how good the activity itself makes me feel. But I know from experience that once I am there, I always enjoy the activity. Whenever I have forced myself to go despite this lazy reluctance, I have never regretted it. I have never ever come home afterwards, thinking “I was right about that… I should just have stayed home.”

Even with activities I really enjoy, like reading books or doing yoga, that first step can be really hard. I have to consciously fight the inertia. The initial effort almost manages to outweigh the more distant pleasure. (The discount rate for that pleasure must be massive!)

The one thing that helps most is habit and scheduling. It is a lot easier to go to the yoga class when it is a fixture in my calendar. It is a lot easier to cycle to work when I have done it daily for… five years? or is it six?

Another trick that works is taking a tiny first step. Pick up a book and open it, without committing to actually read it. Just look at the first page. Once I get that far, the momentum is usually enough to carry me along.

Yesterday I finally picked up a book again and I finished it today. I’m now going to start on the next one straight away so I don’t waste another three weeks without books!

It rained all day so Ingrid and I didn’t didn’t get our afternoon walk, which made both of us a bit surly.
Saw An Inconvenient Truth in the evening (which I will hopefully write more about).

A 40-minute conference call from my mobile to a US number – probably the most expensive phone call I have ever made. Even though I can claim the expense, this is a stupid waste of money and I really need to find a different way to do this.

I would have called someone in the London office and asked them to transfer me, except I was late for the call because Ingrid was unhappy, so everyone would already have been on the phone…

Hot weather; so hot that I had to climb up to the attic at 7:30 in the morning in order to find clothes that would suit the weather better than the woollen skirts, black trousers etc I’ve been wearing to work until now. A more thorough wardrobe switch (from winter to summer) will have to wait until the weekend.