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Wednesday, December 22, 2010

It's been too long!

I've been slacking at the blog lately - too much going on, too much on my mind!

As 2010 comes to a close, I'm reminded what a year it's been! It's been up and down and all around, with a whole LOT of personal growth (and well, personal shrinking!). 2011 promises to be more of the same - growth AND shrinking. I have some big goals to crush and some obstacles (mostly mental) to get around. I have no doubt that I will - and in the end be better, stronger and even happier than I am today.

I have a 2010 "recap" blog started - and I'll get it up before the end of the year, along with a "looking forward to 2011" blog. 2011 is going to rock - so many great things on the horizon!

I continue to be blessed with amazing people around me. My family, old friends making reappearances in my life, and new friends that teach me so much daily.

Hopefully you'll stayed tuned to Checking Out, Checking In in 2011!

~M

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Songless

I'm song-less today! Not really - but I can't think of anything fitting. I've been lax at keeping up the blog lately, but I guess that's what happens when life gets in the way. I'm going with bullet points for this one ...


  • Work... work work work. WORK! I've been busy. It's been nuts. Taking on new hotels, bigger accounts, handling accounts for a coworker that's on vacation, and my own hotels that are needing things. I can say without a doubt that with all the trials and tribulations as of late with work, I LOVE my job. I love my team, my director, everything. I've never been so satisfied with a job. Every day is new and challenging, but I wouldn't give it up. There are some days that frustrate me beyond belief and I actually thought about leaving the business momentarily, but what else would I do? I love what I do! 
  • Travel ... And work. I was lucky enough to head to DC for work a few weeks ago to have a wonderful, albeit brief, team meeting. I love my coworkers - amazing, all of them! We took a Segway tour of the city in the evening. I can say I've never been as stunned at the beauty of a city as I was of DC at night. (Never mind that I want my own Segway!) I can't wait to go back, and go back I will over and over! I really need to start posting pics on here... I think about it in the moment, and then forget about it. 
  • Travel... for me! I'm heading to Vermont is a few days (2 days and a wake-up, but who's counting?!). I can't wait. I need a vacation. I need a getaway. I'm actually pretty sure I'm leaving my work laptop here at home. Shocking if you know me! (I really don't want to check a bag and I can't figure out how to make room for it, but I REALLY need the break!) I'm also heading home for Thanksgiving and Christmas and trying to fit a trip to Vegas in the middle of it all. 
  • The Gym ... what you really come here for! As of the 1st of Oct (or thereabouts) I was officially down 30lbs. I didn't do measurements - so I'm waiting for my November measurements. Still loving it. Still not loving running, but it is what it is. I need to find some new running motivation. I asked for Billy's "leg workout" and I must caution "be careful what you ask for". I've never been so challenged - physically & mentally - in my life that I can remember. (Ok well, I have, but in a short time frame, not like this!). It was hard - and I knew it was going to be. But this was HARD. squats, dead lifts, extensions, calf raises and the butt buster. I know there was more in there but to be honest, I think I've blocked it out of my mind. I HURT after - for a few days. The next day just sitting was painful. I may or may not have pulled up a stool to the counter in my kitchen to work out. Maybe. I went to the gym that night though for cardio. I'm still a little tender - but going back for more tomorrow. At this point, all I can think is "holy crap... when this is all "over" and I'm running for my life in a freaking marathon - I'm going to look good!" And that feeling, dear readers.... is priceless. So is the fact that I now need new bras and underwear, and soon, new jeans. Putting on a pair of jeans that didn't fit 6 weeks ago and now are loose was awesome too. I won't lie - it's not easy every day. I realize that I need to become more automated in my meals and take the time to prep lunches/dinners/menus. (on a side note, I've really freaking been craving a cupcake - but won't have one!). I'm learning my weakness isn't sweet (I keep, oddly, Sour Patch Kids on hand for that - a few of those and I'm cured), but salty. So when I'm back from vacation, I'm going to be baking ... homemade crackers, my own baked sweet potato chips, and also some whole wheat pancakes or waffles that I can freeze and pop in the micro or toaster for breakfast. 
I'm sure there's more I'm missing (I'm seeing someone, diving my time between him, work, gym and life and I find myself short on time), but I'm loving life and loving living life. Everything happens how it's supposed to, when it's supposed to. Along with getting my menus down and automated, I really do need to find a church when I get back. I feel it's a "missing piece".

Stay tuned for vacation tales hopefully ... the new puppy in my parents life promises to keep me busy as well as my best friend and son and our shopping adventures. I'll be coming back with new hair (darker red, and CURLS!) and I'm thinking a new refreshed outlook on things. I'm looking forward to stepping it up in all avenues and checking out some Zumba and kettlebell classes. It's a long road, but wow, it's getting good!

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Who says you can't go home?

Who Says You Can't go Home - Bon Jovi
Who says you can't go home? There's only one place they call me one of their own. Just a hometown boy, born a rolling stone, who says you can't go home? Who says you can't go back? Been all around the world and as a matter of fact, there's only one place left I want to go, who says you can't go home? It's alright, it's alright, it's alright, it's alright, its alright. I went as far as I could, I tried to find a new face, there isn't one of these lines that I would erase. I lived a million miles of memories on that road with every step I take I know that I'm not alone you take the home from the boy, but not the boy from his home. These are my streets, the only life I've ever known, who says you can't go home?


Who says you can't go home? After my bat-shit insane moment of decide I was going to run a marathon, I thought about where to run one. Did I want to go to Cali? Phoenix? Somewhere local? Instead, I decided I wanted my friends & family to be there, so the Vermont City Marathon it is.

On top of that, I decided I needed a vacation. LA and Vegas called my name.... but I finally decided on going to Vermont for a long weekend (almost a week) with family and my best friend. I can't think of a better way to relax and spend my time off. There will be lots of laughter, getting my hair done, shopping, laughter, family and friends. Did I mention laughter? And a new puppy... who's stolen everyone's heart at home.


And my best friend. My amazing best friend. I say it often, but I mean it, I would be absolutely lost without her. We've been through it ALL together. From the heartbreak to laughter to everything in between. The other day she said "I was thinking while mowing the lawn, I could run to the play list on my iPod". I said "ohhh like a 5k? DO IT WITH ME!!!", half thinking she would tell me I'm nuts. But she didn't, and before long, I was sending her the Couch to 5K (C25K) running plan. Yesterday, with her son in tow (er..stroller...yelling "run mana run!")... she started her 1st training. I'm humbled and grateful that she is my best friend. And I couldn't be more excited to know she'll be crossing the finish line with me in November. (Christa, you'll leave us in the dust!!!) ... we might be gasping for breath, but I'll be crossing the line arm in arm with my best friend.


I'm going home in October for vacation. I'm going home in November for my first Thanksgiving in Vermont in 7 years, and I'll be home for Christmas. I'm so grateful that I work from home and my job is allowing me to work from home, in Vermont. Miss Lily will be with her cat-sitter, eventually maybe she'll be able to make the trips with me on the plane. Maybe. Possibly. (Am I that brave?)


So...who says you can't go home?

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Drift Away

Drift Away - Uncle Kracker


And when my mind is free, you know a melody can move me, and when I'm feeling blue the guitar's coming through to soothe me, Thanks for the joy that you're given me, I want you to know I believe in your song. Your rythm and rhyme and harmony you've helped me along, makin' me strong. Oh, give me the beat, boys, and free my soul I want to get lost in your rock and roll and drift away.  

Music is where it's at in my life most of the time. I listen to Pandora all day every day at work. I have a robust, diverse iPod playlist, and I'm willing to listen to most anything someone suggests to me. I find that hard, angry music is great for running. Slower, but with a good beat helps me in my weight circuit training. Slower is better with lifting - so anything too upbeat gets me in trouble. I need to put together a new playlist for running though. Maybe this weekend I'll work on it.

I keep meaning to write about my workouts as a few people have asked - so here goes. Monday, Wed and Friday are cardio for warm up and weight circuit days, Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday are running/cardio days. Although I'm thinking about taking Saturday's off and going to Sunday/Tuesday/Thursday. running plan.

Cardio/Weight Circuit:
  • 20 mins cardio (treadmill or the evil elliptical)
  • Core Workout - I vary this up between all of these, usually 3-4 exercise, and I do them twice. Reps in parentheses. The 1st 3 work the upper abs, the last 3, the lower abs.
    • Medicine Ball twists - side to side seated twists w/ a 6-7lb medicine ball (25)
    • Crunches (25)
    • Sit-ups with 6-7lb medicine ball (25)
    • Taps - laying on back, knees bent, tapping to floor (25)
    • Bicycle - laying on back, knees bent, extend each leg (low to ground) alternately (25)
    • "Holy Crap" (My nickname!) - Lay on back, legs up in the air, raise hips up (1/2" -1" - not very far) (25)
    • Modified planks - on forearms and knees, pulling in stomach (2) - 30 seconds each
  • Free weights - I do 2 sets of each
    • Straight arm raise (out to side) 10lb dumbbell  (15)
    • Bicep Curls 12lb dumbbell (15)
    • Tricep Extension - grab dumbbell with both hands behind head/neck and raise up/down. 5lb (15)
    • Tricep Extension #2 - 7.5 dumbbell. Arm at side, push back (15)
    • Lower back/quad/hamstrings work. 15lb dumbbell, knees shoulder width apart, bend over, sticking butt out, push down heels and stand up, squeezing glutes. 1 set of 15. Next, same thing, but push down with toes. 1 set of 15
  • Legs - weight machines
    • Curls - 40lbs. Laying on stomach, kicking calves up, feet flexed. 2 sets of 15
    • Leg Press - 120lb, 160lb, 180lb - 1 set of 15 per weight
  • Arms - weight machines
    • Pull downs - 60lb - seated leaning back, pulling all the way down to chest, extending back. 2 reps of 15
    • Other pull downs - 40lb - standing, pull bar down as far as it will go, with arms at side, pull up, and back down, arms never leaving side (works triceps) 2 sets of 15
    • Chest Press 60 lb - seated - pressing out - 2 sets of 15
And then I die a little. I usually up my weights, or reps every few weeks. Right now I'm pretty comfortable, but not too comfortable with the weights. I think I'm going to ask to up to 3 sets of each. we'll see.

Tuesday/Thursday/Saturday (or Sunday) is doing the Couch to 5k Program.... I'll write more about that later.

So that's my workout ...for now. I should add - I do core work daily now, at home (reminds me, I need a mat!) So I pick a few of the core exercises above and do them, trying to alternate upper and lower abs day to day. I need to get some dumbbells for the house too to work on my arms more. I'm Wii Boxing a lot - between that and the ab workout - I feel pretty accomplished daily!

 Oh, give me the beat, boys, and free my soul I want to get lost in your rock and roll and drift away. 


Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Disturbia

Disturbia - Rihanna
It's a thief in the night to come and grab you. It can creep up inside you and consume you. A disease of the mind, it can control you, I feel like a monster. Throw on your brake lights, we're in the city of wonder. Ain't gonna play nice, watch out, you might just go under, better think twice your train of thought will be altered. So if you must faulter be wise your mind is in disturbia. It's like the darkness is the light, disturbia, am I scaring you tonight? Disturbia, ain't used to what you like. Disturbia

This is one of my new fave workout songs. I can listen to it a few times in a row on the treadmill or on the track.

I've been bad (again) about blogging. I need to get better - I feel like I'm too dull though. I'll be better! I need to write about my new ab workout. Holy wow... it's no joke! I love it though. I was a little sore in the days after, but now it's getting easier. It's not EASY but it's not bad!

My mom, Aunt, and apparently my Dad are starting our own challenge. Details to be determined, but I'm excited they are all on board. I'll be in Vermont for Thanksgiving and Christmas - and will hopefully be running my 1st 5k in Middlebury! EXCITED!

So other than feeling boring, my only other "excitement" is trying to decide where to go on vacation. LA/Vegas, FLA Keys, or Vermont are the options now. All have their pros and cons!


Someday

This song... is worthy of it's own post. Living our lives out loud... I'm leaving it at that, for personal reasons.

"Someday" - Rob Thomas

You can go
You can start all over again
You can try to find a way to make another day go by
You can hide
Hold all your feelings inside
You can try to carry on when all you want to do is cry

[Chorus:]
And maybe someday
We'll figure all this out
Try to put an end to all our doubt
Try to find a way to make things better now and
Maybe someday we'll live our lives out loud
We'll be better off somehow
Someday

Now wait
And try to find another mistake
If you throw it all away then maybe you can change your mind
You can run, oh
And when everything is over and done
You can shine a little light on everything around you
Man it's good to be someone

[Chorus]

And I don't want to wait
I just want to know
I just want to hear you tell me so
Give it to me straight
Tell it to me slow

Cause maybe someday
We'll figure all this out
We'll put an end to all our doubt
Try to find a way to just feel better now and
Maybe someday we'll live our lives out loud
We'll be better off somehow
Someday

[x2]
Cause sometimes we don't really notice
Just how good it can get
So maybe we should start all over
Start all over again

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Wrong!

Wrong - Martina McBride
Wrong baby wrong baby wrong, it ain’t the end of the world. Don’t you worry pretty girl cause now that he’s gone baby gone baby gone you got nothing to lose. Count the minutes if you want to it won’t be long baby long baby long 'til you find somebody new. Come on now everyone falls down everyone crawls now and then. Then they get up again. You cry if you want to that’s what we all do. But if you think you’ll never move on you’re wrong baby. 

Wow... so I should write an entire blog about dating...no, crappy dating. Er, crappy dates and creepy guys! Part of the list? Let's see... guys who are intimidated by my career, and that seem to think I'm "spoiled" because I've chosen not to have kids and get to travel and have fun and go and do when I want, guys with BAD shoes (and shoelaces and a sweater you'd wear to a bad sweater party) that are clingy.... and now the latest? A stalker. Yay. A stalker of my VERY own. I'm wondering if the convent is a good choice now.

I'm not letting it get me down... but really, it's not fun.

I've been bad at updating this - feeling like I'm censoring myself... and I have been. I'm trying not to - but I am. It's crappy blah drivel - but still censoring.

And the big news..... I was in a funk yesterday and decided to do a weigh in a week early... and thus, had to do measurements.... Officially down 22lbs and 22.5". The inches shocks me, but at the same time, a lot is in my arms and legs, and I've been working them like crazy.

Next week...more core work. I'm pretty sure my trainer giggled a little (you know, if he was a giggling kind of guy) when I said "can I have more core week, like...a lot more". So...here's to more core, more running (really, I hate that....), and more arm work. I'm kind of obsessed with my arms lately. I love love love seeing definition and my arms/hands shaking when I'm done.

Mom & Dad came down this week to visit and bring down a dresser and chair my grandparents had given me. Seeing their reaction to how I look was priceless for me. They hadn't seen me in almost 4 months... and it will be another 6-8 weeks (maybe more) till I'm in VT again - so that should be another interesting reaction. Another favorite reaction was my gf here in VA saying "I keep meaning to tell you this - you're shrinking... you can tell - and you're happier than the 1st time I saw you when you moved here, lots happier". And I am. I just have to remember that.

Come on now everyone falls down everyone crawls now and then. Then they get up again. You cry if you want to that’s what we all do. But if you think you’ll never move on you’re wrong baby.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Ready to Run

Ready to Run - Dixie Chicks


I feel the wind blow through my hair, I'm gonna be ready this time. I'll buy a ticket to anywhere, I'm gonna be ready this time, You see it feels like I'm starting to care and I'm gonna be ready this time. Oh yeah. Ready ready ready ready...ready to run, all I'm ready to do is have some fun. What's all this talk about love? I'm ready to run...I'm ready to run

I don't have much to say. I do, the words aren't there, or well, the nice words. Intervals today. Speed walking for 90 seconds, running for 60. For 40 minutes. I hate running. I know how the hamster in the wheel feels. My mind was not in the game. I was there, but not there in anything more than my presence. Thankfully my trainer realized that and left me to my own thoughts and running. But... I'll figure it out. The running and my thoughts. And I'm not giving up. I'll learn to tolerate running.

 ou see it feels like I'm starting to care and I'm gonna be ready this time. Oh yeah. Ready ready ready ready...ready to run......

Monday, August 16, 2010

I'm Not Afriad

I'm Not Afraid - Eminem

I'm not afraid, to take a stand. Everybody come take my hand. We'll walk this road together, through the storm whatever weather, cold or warm. Just lettin you know that, you're not alone. Holla if you feel like you've been down the same road. 

Work, gym, vodka-y drink, yummy dinner. That was my day/evening. I'm relaxing on the couch right now looking at running plans. "Couch to 5K" is loosely what I'll be doing. I'm not 100% sure about this, but here goes nothing! Oddly ... I'm not scared. A little nervous about looking like a fool running... because really, I am pretty sure running is only meant for if you're being chased... but I'm excited. Everyone keeps saying how admirable this is, how it's inspirational. No, it's bat-shit insane. Nothing more.

I've noticed all the tank tops I wear at the gym are getting big. Thankfully I got them all on sale and can keep wearing them for a while. I may need to get some smaller ones for underneath, but I'm ok with that.

Tonight's dinner was thin slices of baguette, topped with a little pesto and olive oil and fresh mozzarella - heated up. So good. Tomorrow night I need to roast some garlic and get some prosciutto.

I don't have much else to say. I'm just ready for the next step of the journey. I AM interested to see who's going to be there during the journey and at the end, but I guess it wouldn't be part of the journey if there weren't more changes.

Everybody come take my hand. We'll walk this road together, through the storm whatever weather, cold or warm.

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Don't Think I Don't Think About It - Darius Rucker


I left out in a cloud of taillights and dust. Swore I wasn't coming back, said I'd had enough. Saw you in the rear view standing, fading from my life. But I wasn't turnin' 'round, no not this time. But don't think I don't think about it. Don't think I don't have regrets. Don't think it don't get to me, between the work and the hurt and the whiskey. Don't think I don't wonder 'bout could've been, should've been all worked out. I know what I felt, and I know what I said, but don't think I don't think about it. When we make choices, we gotta live with them. Heard you found a real good man and you married him. I wonder if sometimes I cross your mind. Where would we be today if I never drove that car away? 

I don't have a lot to say about the song, it's a favorite of mine, and I listen to it often. Maybe more than I should lately. Everything happens for a reason, right?


I saw "Eat, Pray, Love" today. I've read the book 1.5 times (Yes, I'm halfway through re-reading it). I had heard about it for a while, but I picked it up the weekend that the ex and I called off the wedding. I had no idea that it would mirror how I was feeling, or the impact it would have on me. I found myself picking it up here and there, and not reading it all at once, but that seemed to work based on what was going on in my life. I went alone today, by design, and willed the people watching it with me to be courteous movie-goers. Without giving it away - all I can say is...WOW. Just wow. It's funny how it still mirrors my thoughts. I will be seeing it again in theaters and I can guarantee that I will have the DVD when it comes out. See the movie. You won't regret it.

Tonight I went shopping for groceries and found myself wanting fresh mozzarella. I picked up some plum tomatoes, fresh mozz, some pearl mozz, basil and pesto among other things. I decided in light of my new love affair with the gym, I'm going to have a love affair with food. Good, flavorful food that is still within my diet and daily calories. There's something to be said for savoring flavors. I need to get some prosciutto at some point, but I like the idea of the "anti-pasta"  platter for meals. Simple, yet full of flavor. That's what I'm going for. Good food, great workouts, and a new love affair... with life.

Don't think I don't wonder 'bout could've been, should've been all worked out. I know what I felt, and I know what I said, but don't think I don't think about it. When we make choices, we gotta live with them.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Happy

Happy - Leona Lewis
Someone once told me that you have to choose what you win or lose. You can't have everything don't you take chances. Might feel the pain, don't you love in vain. Cause love won't set you free. I can't stand by the side and watch this life pass me by. So unhappy, but safe as could be. So what if it hurts me? So what if I break down? So what if this world just throws me off the edge? My feet run out of ground. I gotta find my place. I wanna hear my sound. Don't care about all the pain in front of me, cause I'm just trying to be happy, yeah. Just wanna be happy. 

I'm sitting on the couch very very aware of my abs. They hurt. No, they don't hurt actually, but they are letting me know they are there. I wonder when sit-ups (with a 7lb medicine ball no less) got to be ...easy. Or when doing crunches and holding for 5 seconds each got to be easy. When did the number of a guy who owns a running store and is going to put together my 5k training plan... get to be exciting? Maybe at the same time that I realized I'm pretty flipping happy.

I look forward to the gym. I like the burn. I'm obsessed now with tracking my calories and exercise on FitDay.com. Still not hitting even 1200/day, but working on it. I got asked today if I'm having a mid-life crisis. Jokingly I said "yes, bite me". But in reality, this isn't a crisis. This is just mid-life. The motorcycle I want to buy next spring MIGHT be a mid-life crisis. Or a reward. I'm going with reward.

On a different note. Steven Slater may just be my hero. I've flown a LOT, and starting to fly a lot more and I love this guy. Maybe it's that I'm in the industry - but you really do get to a point that you can't take any more. People flying can be downright horrible - treating flight attendants like dirt. They are the same people that treat front desk staff like crap too. I can't think of a better way to go out than down the emergency landing slide with a couple of beers in hand. Ok, I'd probably have taken some vodka, but that's just semantics. People seem either appalled at what he did, or they are 100% behind him. I'd guess that the split is between those in the service industry and those not. I'm sure there were better ways to handle it, but I still admire the guy for refusing to take more. Maybe there's something to be said for that - not to the degree he did, but in day to day. If you're not happy... change it.


So what if it hurts me? So what if it breaks me down? So what if this world just throws me off the edge? ....Don't care about all the pain in front of me, cause I'm just trying to be happy, yeah. Just wanna be happy.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Play On

"Play On" - Carrie Underwood

What you're gonna do when the show is over.  What you're gonna sing when the the song ends. How you're gonna cope when there is no closure. Where you're gonna reach when the goal gets higher. How you're gonna make it through when you think you lost your chance. Play on when you're losing the game. Play on 'cause you're gonna make mistakes. It's always worth the sacrifice, even when you think you're wrong, so play on.


So lets start with some cold hard numbers. 2 months. 3ish weeks "off time" for travel etc. 15 pounds lost. 9" lost (probably closer to 10 or 11, but I mis-measured on the 1st time a couple of places).... I did a weigh-in yesterday so I knew what that was, and I was excited. Today I decided to do my measurements, and was adding up the totals and subtracting...and doing it a few more times. My new motivation... is 15# and 9". There have been a lot of days I just didn't want to go to the gym, to get out of bed, to do any work...to do anything, but now more than ever, I'm motivated.

Today was a cardio day. In light of gearing up for running (really, running, ugh!), I decided I need to do some endurance training so I don't die on the track. I have been reading up on various treadmill work outs and found out that one of the "Biggest Loser" workouts (Love that show BTW), is to start out at the highest incline the treadmill will go (in my case 15%) at a slow pace (I started a bit too fast and almost died). Since I was doing a 30 min work out, every 2 mins I decreased my incline and upped my speed. What a workout! I LOVE IT!!!! On my weight training days, I'll still do this - and eventually I'd like to do 30 mins on weight days and 45-60 on cardio days. Try it if you have a treadmill - you'll thank me!!

Today was also Day 1 of the Oh Yeah! Vanilla Creme protein shake for breakfast. It's ok. Still too milky for my taste, but it's only 8oz, so I can swig it down pretty quickly. I'm struggling to hit 1500 calories most days, and eating breakfast has always been a struggle. Well, at least 1st thing in the morning. So we decided that I'd try protein shakes as a replacement. I'm exploring some other protein options (including Nectar - fruit flavored ones you can add to Crystal Light or water), so we'll see what the final verdict is. Still didn't hit 1500 calories today - but I'm not hungry. The more I work out, the less I want to eat. And my metabolism seems to be increasing. I find myself having to force down almonds and cashews for more calories.

I got a little excited today thinking about the running regimen today. But realize I need to buy a runners watch for pace etc, an arm band for my ipod, and goodness knows how many pair of sneakers I'll go through. I realized after my trainer said something about disturbing comfort zones - that's exactly what I'm doing, and I LOVE it.

This journey hasn't been easy - I've wanted to give up and give in. I still don't know what my 5 year plan is (What a stupid question!) but I know it involves a new love of exercise, possibly a new love of running, and a new love of me. I still can't believe this is the journey I'm on some days, but I wouldn't change it for the world.

Play on when you're losing the game. Play on 'cause you're gonna make mistakes. It's always worth the sacrifice, even when you think you're wrong, so play on. Here's to being wrong, making mistakes and knowing that the sacrifice IS worth it... I'm playing on.

Monday, August 9, 2010

My Wish - Rascall Flatts

I hope that the days come easy and the moments pass slow, and each road leads you where you want to go, and if you're faced with a choice, and you have to choose, I hope you choose the one that means the most to you. And if one door opens to another door closed, I hope you keep on walkin' till you find the window, If it's cold outside, show the world the warmth of your smile. But more than anything, more than anything, my wish, for you, is that this life becomes all that you want it to, your dreams stay big, and your worries stay small, you never need to carry more than you can hold. And while you're out there getting where you're getting to, I hope you know somebody loves you, and wants the same things too. Yeah, this, is my wish. I hope you never look back, but ya never forget, all the ones who love you, in the place you left. I hope you always forgive, and you never regret, and you help somebody every chance you get. Oh, you find God's grace, in every mistake, and you always give more than you take.


Somewhere along the way, I guess I forgave. Maybe I always had? I don't know but it's a very peaceful feeling right now. I don't hate him, I don't at all love him, and I just want to forget him. There used to be a time that I couldn't remember life without him, now I can't remember life with him again. I'm ok with that. I hope he's ok, successful and happy. But that's all. I know that feeling isn't mutual and that's ok too. It just proves we weren't meant to be forever, we were just meant to be for a reason.
I took today off to attend my friends' wedding. We all went to high school together, but 2 lives separated after high school met up 2 years ago. They now have a baby, a blended family and today, got married. It makes me believe that if things are truly mean to be, they will be. We can't force fate's hand, she's got her own agenda. This was a quickly planned wedding, low-key, parents only (ok and me, but I was the kid herder). Somewhere along the way I decided my non-traditional, non-girly friend WOULD be wearing something old , new, borrowed, and blue. We got them all covered. Her something borrowed ... was the necklace I planned on wearing at MY wedding. I wasn't sure how I would feel about that today, but all I know is that it looked perfect with her dress and it's no longer my "wedding necklace".
There's still a lot of things on my mind, but they are less and less of a stress. In the meantime, I'm sure I'll find plenty of things to blog about.
Now... since I have the day off... a nap, then the gym. I'm starting to love my hard workouts. I might not be able to move later tonight, but the new outcome is one I'm willing to deal with. I need to research running training too. There's a track at a school across from my condo that I plan on doing most of my training on in the coming months, but I need to find something that works for me. It's looking like my first 5k will be in Vermont for Thanksgiving. Looking for a Turkey Trot, but that's the plan now. It will be nice to have family and friends there for my 1st run.

Admittedly I cringe a bit when I think about being a runner. Me, a runner? I don't think it will be a new synonym for me - this is more of a goal than anything - but who knows. I saw a car in front of me with the "Runner Girl" sticker on it and thought "hmmmm, maybe after the 1st 5k ... I'll get one of those". So... we'll see.

I hope that the days come easy and the moments pass slow, and each road leads you where you want to go, and if you're faced with a choice, and you have to choose, I hope you choose the one that means the most to you. - thank you for the memories, the good and the bad. You've helped me become stronger even in the worst hours.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Say....

Say - John Mayer

Take all of your wasted honor every little past frustration. Take all of your so-called problems, better put 'em in quotations. Say what you need to say
....Say what you need to say.... Walking like a one man army fighting with the shadows in your head. Living out the same old moment knowing you'd be better off instead, if you could only . . .Say what you need to say ....Say what you need to say.... Have no fear for giving in have no fear for giving over. You'd better know that in the end its better to say too much, then never say what you need to say again. Even if your hands are shaking and your faith is broken, even as the eyes are closing do it with a heart wide open. Say what you need to say ....Say what you need to say.... 


I had (am actually having!) a convo with one of the most awesome women I've had the pleasure of knowing right now, a coworker, and I can safely say a friend, and I mentioned that I feel like sometimes I hold back in my blog, and I don't know why. Maybe it's because of who I know will read this, but I guess at the same time, that shouldn't matter. I should be able to say what I want here, and to those in my life, about my life.

Last night, after cardio, I sat in front of the computer with 5 tabs open after doing a Google search of "how to forgive".  I didn't get so far with that. But I made me wonder... I've always thought that in the past I've been able to forgive and move on. Have I really? Did I just sweep things away? Or did I forgive - and right now, I am just not ready to? (I don't really like that answer!!)

So that brings me to my next question/thought... how do you know if someone is here for a reason, a season or a lifetime? Again, I thought I knew how to answer that for most people in my life, but it seems lately I might be wrong. Maybe I'm having trouble admitting someone I thought might be in it for the lifetime... was really in it for a reason or a season, and I'm not willing to accept that. Maybe the leaves are just changing color on our season, and we need to make it through a few more before it's a lifetime? (I seem to be full of questions that I can't answer lately!)

Take all of your wasted honor every little past frustration. Take all of your so-called problems, better put 'em in quotations. Say what you need to say

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Hurt

Hurt - Nine Inch Nails/Johnny Cash
I hurt myself today to see if I still feel. I focus on the pain, the only thing that's real. The needle tears a hole the old familiar sting. Try to kill it all away but I remember everything

Ok - odd song choice, but it's the only one I could think of that got my point across. I'm sore. I hurt. My abs have gotten progressively more sore since last night. My lower back is tight and tender (we'll be careful tomorrow and change it up a bit). My abs, did I mention them? OH and my shoulders (I just reached to scratch an itch on my back...yeah, ouch).

Today was cardio. I don't know if I could have done much else. Tomorrow is more of yesterday. I am skeptical about being able to function on Thursday, but we'll see. Face the pain... that's all I can do!

I have nothing to say, but a lot on my mind. Working through things... working, living, gym.

I hurt myself today to see if I still feel. I focus on the pain, the only thing that's real - and it's GOOD!

Monday, August 2, 2010

I'm Moving On

I'm Moving On - Rascal Flatts
I'm movin' on. At last I can see life has been patiently waiting for me and I know there's no guarantees, but I'm not alone. There comes a time in everyone's life when all you can see are the years passing by \and I have made up my mind that those days are gone. I sold what I could and packed what I couldn't stopped to fill up on my way out of town. I've loved like I should but lived like I shouldn't. I had to lose everything to find out. Maybe forgiveness will find me somewhere down this road

I have a feeling this will be a bit disjointed and jumping around - there's a lot on my mind. I'll start with the highlights: (These may be in the wrong order ... sorry!)

  • Went back to the gym again. I took an extended break for a pity party. 
  • Found some awesome new recipes I can't wait to try - I'll be posting recipes along with blog entries in the coming days/weeks. I'm excited to try the 100 calorie margaritas and vodka cocktails too!
  • I'm making a renewed point to live life for me and about me. 
  • I've decided I need to learn meditation - I want a clear, calm mind
  • I need to forgive my ex. 
The last few weeks have been crazy at work - nuts. Yelling hotels, unhappy hotels, more unhappy hotels, fixes, more upset hotels, more fixes. Never a dull moment. The stress was there though. Add in a long weekend trip to Omaha and I missed a week and half at the gym. My trip to Omaha was filled with almost every emotion from joy to exhaustion to sadness to anger. I was visiting on of my best friends, so I made a pretty stealth trip. A few people knew the details, a few more as it got closer. I got some quality time with friends, lots of fun times filled with laughter with C, and a revelation (while sitting in a bar no less) that I really need to forgive my ex. The anger and bitterness came back with a vengeance. I wasn't prepared for that at all. It took me by surprise and I know changed the tone of my last day in Omaha. Without going into details - I've come to realize that I need to, must, have to forgive my ex. While I've moved on - and wouldn't go back, this last detail is the hardest, biggest and the one standing in my way and causing me pain - even a year later. So now the big question... HOW do I forgive him - and what am I forgiving? Does he even need to know? (Probably not, it's best that way). My revelation led to me being a bit reserved on the last day of my trip, pushing away someone I didn't need to - and overwhelmed. We spent the afternoon before my flight at the zoo. I love the zoo - I love any zoo, but I hadn't been to the Omaha zoo since the ex proposed - in front of the giraffes. We spent the afternoon wandering around laughing at the animals and taking it all in. As we rounded the corner to the giraffe exhibit. I honestly thought I could stand there, in the same place I was almost a year to the day and be ok with it. And I was - for all of about a minute. I couldn't talk, I just pulled my sunglasses off the top of my head and on to my face, turned on my heel and made a bee-line for anywhere but there. Poor C ... Thankfully - he knew - and let me cry for a minute and then does what he always does - made me laugh.
Sitting at the airport bar, taking it all in I was filled with so many emotions. Anger kept taking over though as I knew I needed to forgive and move on. How could I not have forgiven though at this point? The last week has been hard - I've not really known what to say or think, and in the process pushed someone I shouldn't have. I'm defensive and on edge.

Somewhere along the way during my pity party for one, I decided it was back to basics in making ME happy. Work, gym, cooking, reading more books, and enjoying life - the life I have, that's been given to me. I used to read books like they were going out of style - but over the last few years, I have found myself not able to concentrate for long on them. So I'm going to work on that. I have a number of suggestions, and a number of unread books sitting here. I am going to start learning about meditation - I want a clear mind, a calm mind. Suggestions are welcome. I am not 100% sure where to start, but I'll get there. Which leads me to my last 2 bullet points ...

I've found a great site (I saw it on "The View" - don't laugh!) call Hungry Girl (www.hungry-girl.com) - she has a few cookbooks out - and takes lots of full fat/calorie meals/snacks/foods and makes them lower cal and better all around. There are a couple cookbooks of hers that I will be getting as well. Stay tuned for new recipes!!

And the gym. I knew I needed to go back. I knew I needed something more intense. I have to run a 5k in 3.5 mos... not going to the gym isn't an option anymore. So I went in today .. and told Billy (Mr. Pain) that I needed something more intense, an in essence, an ass-kicking. Billy's wife Lisa (Mrs. Pain) was in the gym - and they decided they were going to invite themselves to my pity party and give me the ass-kicking I asked for. In hindsight, I maybe should have thought about that. I'm still doing 3 days of weights/cardio and 2 of just cardio (I'm taking weekends off - for me, for my own needs) - but my weight/cardio days just got a lot harder. 30 mins of cardio - and a new weight circuit that works a lot of my core - but arms (holy crap) and legs. I was worried about being able to walk up the stairs, I really should have been worried about being able to lift a glass of water to my lips. New machines, lots of free weights and some new core work. My abs hurt bad enough I thought I was going to throw up, my arms were shaking. I love it. LOVE it. Can't wait for more. And let me just say - doing crunches is getting easier, sit ups are ok... not my fave, but a sit up w/ a 7lb medicine ball in your hands and feet held down SUCKS. Monica Selles and her grunting on the court when she's hitting tennis balls ain't got nothing on me doing a sit up with a medicine ball. It wasn't even voluntary either!

And my last bit. In talking with Billy when I could breathe and catch a breath - I mentioned the blog and how I have gotten nice emails asking when I was going to update, scolded because I haven't, and some demanding "update!!" comments - he hit the nail on the head - it's about accountability.

So I'm moving on... I'm not letting life pass me by ... and I'm going to find this forgiveness that I need.

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Hello World

Hello World - Lady Antebellum
Hello world. How've you been? Good to see you, my old friend. Sometimes I feel as cold as steel and broken like I'm never going to heal. I see a light, a little grace, a little faith unfurled. Hello world

It's been a while ... oops. Life got in the way, no excuses though. I've gotten a lot of "so uh, are you going to update" comments... so here it is! I promise to be better! Some days it's hard to think of what to write!

Last night was Day 2 back at the gym after a little more than a week off. Back to the routine was so nice. I missed it. I've decided not to do any measurements for another week plus since I took that week off. I may wait until the 2 month mark. We'll see.

Why did I take over a week off? My last 2 weeks looked like this: Friend in town for the weekend, beach fun, Dallas for 2 (long) days for work, home, pack and to Pink Hill, NC for the long 4th weekend with another friend. Busy busy busy. And tiring. Who knew though that relaxing in NC not having to do much of anything (meals cooked for you, waking up on your own time, going to bed early) could be SO tiring!! I'm ready for some down time!

A boring update - but I'm formulating some new blog ideas... so not to worry! I'll be back!

Sunday, June 20, 2010

What a Wonderful World

What a Wonderful World - Louis Armstrong

I see trees of green, red roses too, I see them bloom for me and you and I think to myself what a wonderful world. I see skies of blue and clouds of white the bright blessed day, the dark sacred night. And I think to myself what a wonderful world. The colors of the rainbow so pretty in the sky are also on the faces of people going by,I see friends shaking hands saying how do you do. They're really saying I love you. I hear babies crying, I watch them grow, they'll learn much more than I'll never know, and I think to myself what a wonderful world.Yes I think to myself what a wonderful world.

I got yelled at for not blogging - so here goes. (I guess it should be quick since Lily just brought out her beanie baby, which means it's close to bed time).

Every time I hear this song, it makes me think of the two most amazing men in my life. My Dad, and my Grandpa. I can't tell you exactly why, but I distinctly remember going to my cousin's wedding in Boston (and missing the wedding - pre-GPS - because we were lost), and going to the Parker House for the reception (Now the Omni Parker House - it's a hotel world thing...). I remember being excited to be eating Parker House Rolls at THE Parker House. But I remember this song playing. Maybe that's why this song makes me think of them, I'm not sure.

Since it's Father's Day, it seems appropriate. So many of my memories growing up involve both of them. From the sugar house (and keeping soda cold in the snow bank), to 4th of July chicken ....slaughtering. (I remember telling my 7th grand Science teacher that chickens were fully ready on the 4th of July.... poor guy was pretty shocked I think), to riding "over east" or "up west" on the tractor.

When I was in Kindergarten - Grandpa - the town mailman - would bring me to school most days. I'm pretty sure I thought I was hot shit because of that. Sometimes he would give me money for chocolate milk, other times he would rescue me when I'd forgotten my snack. I'm pretty sure I still think I was hot shit because he did that for me. Sometimes I'd go out on the mail route with him - THAT was pretty cool. Today though, I just cherish the time I get to spend with him. Today, when I called for Father's Day, he thanked me for calling, asked me to call more often (I will) and asked when I was coming home because he and Grandma really enjoy seeing me. One of my reasons for moving here was to be closer to family - and in moments like that, I know it was the right choice.

I was filling up my new tool box today - and laughing because I was transferring over tools that my Dad bought me on a trip to California. He was trying to putter around and fix something and was almost shocked that I didn't have any tools. "Meg" he asked "how did you put together that TV stand?" My reply? "A shoe". The next day, I had a basic tool kit. I got the stubborn gene from Dad, and the pig headed gene... but nope, couldn't get any of the "Shop Teacher" genes. Thanks Dad. :) The older I get, the more the lessons he tried to teach me are easier to take. Hindsight really is 20/20 - I wish I'd listened earlier.

There's one other "Dad" I can't leave out. John B. What an amazing Dad, Husband and friend. John passed away earlier this year, but my memories of him (Lucky) and Dad (Lucky) are as long and deep as my memories of my own Dad. I remember when it became a local call from Orwell to Brandon. I think the heavens opened up a little for Dad and John - who used to talk almost daily on the phone about the going's on at Otter Valley. (You'd think they would have talked in the hallways... but no!).

Happy Father's Day to my Daddy, Grandpa - and all the Dad's in my life.  You truly make it a wonderful world.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Bring on the Rain

"Bring on the Rain" - Jo Dee Messina
It's almost like the hard times circle 'round, a couple drops and they all start coming down. Yeah, I might feel defeated, I might hang my head, I might be barely breathing - but I'm not dead. Tomorrow's another day and I'm thirsty anyway, so bring on the rain. I'm not gonna let it get me down, I'm not gonna cry and I'm not gonna lose any sleep tonight.

I woke up after a short night of "eh" sleep - to thunder and rain. I won't lie, I was a little excited for a rainy day. Who doesn't love a rainy day? The rain wore off for most of the day and I felt like I was on warp speed - go-go-go all day. Around 430p it started to get dark though - and I checked the weather to see if we were expecting more rain. Indeed we were. I wanted to do nothing more than crawl into bed and stay there and listen to the rain. And I did, for a few minutes. I knew I HAD to go to the gym though. I just had to. So I got up... and made my way to the gym as it started lightening and thundering and raining hard. My back was bothering me a bit, my mind wasn't in the game, but I pushed through and by the end, was very glad I did.
 
I still haven't done much tonight, but I still made it to the gym. They say it takes 21 days to make a habit, and I'm 9 days in. Better than I thought I would be!!!
 
I have nothing witty or exciting to offer. Lots of thoughts going on ... they just don't seem to be making their way to the keyboard. Maybe in time.

Love who you love...with all that you have

"Love Who you Love" - Rascall Flatts
Should have stolen every moment now there's a page with not enough on it where we belong. I guess I'll never understand it. Why do we take it all for granted until it's gone? Cause then it's gone. Love who you love with all that you have and don't waste the time that flies so fast. Love who you love, and say that you do. Hold on as tight as they'll let you. Love who you love.

There are a lot of days that I am frustrated, in a funk, "down", and sometimes a little bitter/angry, and it takes a harsh reminder that in reality, I have it really really good. I wonder what it will take to not have to have the harsh reminders pull me back to reality. And from today on, I'm striving to remember just how good I have it.

I'm so blessed with a truly amazing family. I grew up living next door to my Grandparents and Great Grandparents. I lived a short distance from my other Grandmother, and I saw them all frequently. I'm the 5th generation to grow up on our family "farm". I'm blessed with friends that are nothing short of wonderful & supportive. I have an amazing job that gave me the opportunity to work from home again, doing what I love with hotels that I have fun with. (Even though they are a constant source of frustration, I do love what I do!). I live 10 minutes from the beach, and I got to choose where I moved to for the job. I'm blessed and lucky and I really do have it good.

Yesterday's harsh wake up call was a message from a close friend in California. She lived with us for a while, and worked for me at 2 hotels. She was one of my best supervisors ever, and became a close friend. Since I moved her life has gone into a tailspin a time or two, and all I could do was stand on the other side and watch and wait for her to reach out to me. She lost a baby in January, her mom had cervical cancer this spring. Her life has never been easy. She grew up on the wrong side of the tracks. Her mom was 14 when she gave birth. She's seen things I could only have nightmares about. We couldn't have come from different worlds if we'd tried that hard, but somehow, we became amazing friends. I spent weekends with her family drinking, playing cards, bbqing and having a general good time. We chatted for a few minutes and she asked if I could give her a call, she had some news that she didn't think I'd want to hear via an IM. So I gave her a call, we chatted for a few minutes and she told me she was pregnant again. That in itself was scary for me, and her, as there's no guarantee she will be able to carry to term again. However the shocking news was that her mom had passed away a few weeks ago. After a few minor heartattacks, she passed away at home, in her daugthers arms, on her couch, exactly as she would have wanted it. She was 45. Brenda was the rock of her family. She told it like it was, but loved with all she had. She would have done anything for her family, and usually did. They accepted this small town white girl into their small town Mexican family like I was another daughter. I'm pretty sure there is nothing that they wouldn't have done for me, had I asked. Fiecely loyal...loving with all that they had.

I can't imagine losing my Mom right now, or ever. (Or my Dad). I don't know how I would get through the day every day... but I'm certainly reminded how lucky I am that I still have my parents, grandparents and friends.

I went to the gym shortly after my call with Amanda, popped on some angry music and hit the treadmill for 2 miles in 30ish minutes. I felt marginally better after, but drained. I came home and spent the evening chatting with LeeAnn and got into bed at 9p. (Granted I didn't go to sleep till 1a... ) I didn't eat dinner (bad), I didn't pass go, didn't collect $200. This morning I woke up feeling somewhat better, but still so sad for my friend, but so grateful and humbled. I'm living life starting today, taking nothing for granted.

Love who you love, and say that you do. Hold on as tight as they'll let you. Love who you love.


RIP Brenda Card ... thank you for the lessons you taught me ... and the $$ I won from you in cards. <3

Monday, June 14, 2010

Lose Yourself

"Lose Yourself" - Eminem

Look, if you had one shot, or one opportunity to seize everything you ever wanted-One moment. Would you capture it or just let it slip?.....You better lose yourself in the music, the moment you own it, you better never let it go, you only get one shot, do not miss your chance to blow this opportunity comes once in a lifetime yo

I guess today's title has multiple meanings... I hadn't thought about it until just now when I looked at it again. I haven't updated my iPod yet (that's on my list for tomorrow), but I can assure you that there will be some good "angry" music on my gym playlist. I've found that Eminem gets me really into my cardio. When I feel like I really just don't want to do it... I flip to "Lose Yourself" followed by "Sing for the Moment" ... and I'm back in my groove and feeling good. I find myself losing myself in the moments there. In fact today I found myself looking forward to my workout. I couldn't wait to get to the gym. It's been a bit of a long weekend, and a busy Monday at work, with some added outside stress. I got on the treadmill and hit my "cruising altitude" for a pre-lifing warm up, and I felt myself relax. That was a pretty odd feeling. And then I found myself lost in the moments of being on the treadmill and not thinking about anything but what I was doing. I could get used to that.

Monday, Wednesday & Friday is the lifting circuit (and some core work), Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday is purely cardio. I forgot to grab a copy of my actual lifting circut - but lets see if I can remember:

  • 20 mins cardio (Treadmill) to warm up
  • Medicine Ball Work - 8lb medicine ball held at the chest - elbows out and moving left to right not taking the ball off your chest (2 sets of 20)
  • Medicine Ball Work - touching the medicine ball from side to side on the floor at a pretty quick pace (2 set of 20)
  • Crunches - (2 Sets of 15)
  • Reverse Crunches (2 sets of 15)
  • Kettle Ball lifts - I have a huge knot in my back and some lower back pain - so this is helping to stretch and strengthen. Lift a 17lb kettle ball from the floor to stomach and back down. (2 sets of 15)
  • Calf Raises - 60 lbs (2 sets of 15)
  • Leg Extensions - Quads - 100, 120, 140 lbs (1 set of 15 of each weight)
  • Leg raises - Hamstrings 30 lbs (2 sets of 15)
  • Arm raises - Forearms/Biceps/Triceps - 45 lbs (2 sets of 15)
  • Lateral Lifts - 5lb dumbells (2 sets of 15)
  • Bicep curls 7.5lb dumbells (2 sets of 15)
  • Chest Presses - 45 lbs (2 sets of 15)
  • Lateral Pulls - 20 lbs (2 sets of 15)
I think that's it... After my work out I asked Billy his thoughts on coming in 2x a day. He told me he's fine with that but I'm only allowed to lift once a day. I went at lunch the other day for cardio and felt great and energized when I came back. I think there's something to it! So I'm going to try a few days a week going at lunch and for my normal after-work-workout. Billy said he will let me push myself as much as I want as long as I'm feeling ok.

My fridge is stocked with whole grain/multi grain bread, turkey, cucumbers, and right now watermelon. I didn't like much of the other produce at the grocery store I was at last night - so I'm going to venture to this "World Food Market" sometime this week. It's huge and looks promising. Next up - finding a water deliver service. I hate forgetting to put my water bottles in the fridge and like the idea of cold water when I want it!

I could write a book about the other thoughts on my mind... but I'm not going to. I'm grateful for LeeAnn and her unending encouragement, understanding, venting and love ... I'd seriously be lost with out her lately!


Saturday, June 12, 2010

Red Light

"Red Light" - David Nail
So this is how it ends. This is where it all goes down. This is what "I don't love you" feels like. It ain't the middle of the night and it ain't even raining outside. It ain't exactly what I had in mind for goodbye; at a red light in the sunshine on a Sunday. Nothin' to say don't even try. Some are comin' home, some are leavin' town while my world's crashin' down. On a Sunday, in the sunshine, at a red light.

When I heard this song... I was stopped dead in my tracks in whatever I was doing. It was a Saturday. It was sunny. We were trying to decide if we were going to postpone the wedding in case my Mom had to have surgery. I flippantly, in frustration said something along the lines of "you're not being helpful, you probably don't even WANT this stupid wedding". Never in a million years did I think that I couldn't be more right. When I hear the song now, I'm still brought back to that day, but it's ok.



Think of how different it would be if you never met that one person that changed everything.

I read this the other day and it's been in my mind ever since. There are a few people that fit into the category. Certainly my ex, and that day. It all changed in a heartbeat. I didn't know how to get through the days. I started trying to get through hours and minutes. It got easier. Some days were better than others. Some weren't. I finally decided I wanted to start dating again... WOW! I had NO idea what I was in for. Not.at.all. I don't remember 1st dates being so... bad. I'd all but given up when I got a message from a guy. I replied, not paying much attention. It wasn't until the next day I realized that he was a bit younger than me. I liked the messgages so I figured "what the hell".

I have to add a bit to the story before I finish ... I had a convo with said guy last night - it went something like this:

Him: "What are you doing?"
Me: "writing a blog, you know, that thing you probably haven't and won't ever read"
Him: "I'm prolly in it"
Me: "Nope, did you want to be? Doesn't matter, you'll never read it"
Him: "Never know"
Me: "Oh I'm fairly certain"
Him: "You're wrong"
Me: "you're going to read it just to spite me now!"

Back to the story. I didn't know this guy who I was reluctantly meeting the night before Thanksgiving was going to end up being one of my very closest friends... I didn't know that he would end up driving from Omaha to VB with me... and I didn't ever fathom how so very alike we would be. I certainly didn't know he would be one of those people that I met that would change it all. (I'm sure when he's reading this out of spite... he may find out things he didn't know) I was reminded that good people, caring people, still exist. I was reminded that family values exist still. I was reminded that a good "country" boy... really ain't so bad. (It's actually pretty good!) I learned that my cat really DOES like (most) people. (Sorry Dad, but your really pissed her off!). (Lily hopped up in his lap the 1st time he was at my house and made herself very comfortable... traitor! She even would look at me like "oh it's just YOU" when I'd come through the front door and not up the stairs ...she was expecting him.) Most of all, I learned that it's ok to trust people again, and that it's ok to tear down the walls.

I won't say that our short journey so far has been easy. Remember I said we're scarily alike? We're not allowed to have bad days on the same day any more. It's messy when we do, and it's not at all pretty. I can be difficult (Shush Mom...!!!!!) - and he puts up with it - even when it's unfounded and I'm being "impossible" and he "doesn't get me". But I will say ... that I'm forever blessed that he's in my life (and like it or not, he's staying... and that's ME liking it or not... I'm pretty sure he's too stubborn to walk away), I'm forever blessed that unknowingly he changed a lot of things in my little world.

You're Gonna Miss This

"You're Gonna Miss This" - Trace Adkins
Your gonna miss this. Your gonna want this back. Your gonna wish these days hadn't gone by so fast. These are some good times, so take a good look around, you may not know it now but your gonna miss this.

Day 2 of baby sitting my friends' 11mos old ... and he's happily asleep for the 2nd night in a row with minimal tears. He's so sweet and full of smiles and giggles. Earlier he was crawling around on the floor and came over to my feet. He put his little hands out, grabbed onto my middle fingers and pulled himself to his knees. He started grunting and with a little encouragement, he was on his feet. The proud beaming smile he had was beyond priceless. Between that and his sweet sleeping face, I'm not sure I'll forget those moments.
 
I've done a lot of reminiscing lately. I was able to spend Memorial Day in Vermont this year - lots of times with family and lots of time with Lee Ann and Jayden. Both priceless! Walking around my grandparents house, lawn and sitting in their garage for Mom's yard sale brought back a lot of happy memories. I remember playing HORSE in their garage driveway with my uncle and cousin with a red, white and blue basketball. I remember Grandma driving my cousin Kurt and I to meet Kurt's mom in Albany. The particular exit we got off requires you to be in the right hand lane to actually exit. If you stay in the left lane,  you get back on the Northway. Grandma stayed in the left lane, and when she realized her mistake, she promptly started backing up. Kurt and I still laugh about that to this day. Being home was hard this time - Grandma is so thin, Grandpa is using a cane. I realized that indeed - these are some good times, and I am going to miss them. How fortunate I am to be closer to them and to be able to see them more often.
 
The memories with Lee Ann are endless... and probably embarrassing, so I'll leave those out.  When I was packing for the trip from Omaha to Virginia Beach - I picked up some butterscotch candies and cinnamon candies. I was instantly transported back to my Great Grandmother's house. She always had those in a candy jar. In fact, my grandparents have a candy jar full of hard candies in their kitchen currently as well.
 
I remember the look on my my own mom's face when we took her to Kings Canyon National Park for the first time. Her eyes welled up in tears as she took in the sheer beauty of the park. Until you've seen the giant Sequoia's - I don't think you can ever fully appreciate them. A few years later, we went to Yosemite in the winter. Breathtaking. I'm grateful I could spent time with my parents in both parks. I have an equally fond memory of my Mom coming down the Alpine Slide at Pico - mouth wide open ... catching flies while she shrieked with a mix of mostly terror and some glee.  There was another particular moment when she decided after a good snowfall that she was going to sled down our driveway. It was dark out, with the flood light on the garage providing a pretty good light. None of us were prepared for Mom to take off down the hill and end up halfway to Gram & Gramp's. She shrieked and yelled and laughed her ass off the whole way - I'm sure you could hear her at the end of Young Road that night!
 
There's a deer head hanging in my parents Family Room that always makes me smile. Not because it's a mounted deer head, but the elaborate story behind it being there. "It was like a flash of lightening when I put my scope to him" said my Dad (over and over and OVER) in reference to the sun coming up and hitting the scope on his gun as he put his sights on the buck. I remember shooting a shotgun one day and thinking it was with a shell dad hadn't loaded correctly so there wasn't enough or much shot in it, and it wouldn't kick. WOW was I wrong. I remember mornings when it was raining or snowing badly, sitting in my Dad's truck waiting for the school bus...
 
And there are the memories I'm making now. The drive to Virginia Beach... "ummm we need to stop outside of St. Louis to figure out what's going on with Lily..." A few hours later...we'd inherited one pissed off cat. Weekly lunches with my (new) friend Sandi at Wheatfields in the Old Market in Omaha - I looked forward to our weekly lunches - and miss them terribly.
 
I hope I can take the time to reflect on the old and new memories every day, and not take any of them for granted.
 
"So take a good look around ... you may not know it now... but you're going to miss this"

Friday, June 11, 2010

Glitter In the Air

"Glitter in the Air" - Pink
Have you ever fed a lover with just your hands? Closed your eyes and trusted, just trusted? Have you ever thrown a fist full of glitter in the air? Have you ever looked fear in the face and said, "I just don't care"? It's only half past the point of no return, the tip of the iceberg, the sun before the burn,the thunder before the lightning, the breath before the phrase. Have you ever felt this way?

I went to be restless, and a bit "blah" after some bickering w/ a great friend. We've been like this for a few days... or weeks, I don't even know right now. I was tired after dinner with friends. I came home and wrote my blog and went to bed. I woke up a few times to get comfortable and drink some water. I woke up not feeling any better than I had when I went to bed, mentally. I felt ok physically. I'd offered to baby sit for some friends this weekend and knew that tonight I'd be babysitting the most adorable 11mos old boy this side of the Mississippi. My motivation at work wasn't where it could have been, but I did some busy work, tied up some loose ends and decided to go to "lunch" early and go to the gym for cardio. Leading up to going, I found myself looking forward to it. Weird.

I hopped on the treadmill with my iPod (Note to self, get a new damn sync cord tomorrow... the "Gym" Playlist you have sucks!) and did a couple minutes at a pretty slowish speed and no incline. I kept the pace at 3mph and and incline of 1.5 which slowly moved up to 3.5 by the time I was done. 30 mins and 2 miles later, I felt better. My frustrstions were still there, but I just felt better.

Tomorrow is weights again! Monday starts my normal routine. Monday, Wednesday & Friday = weights, Tuesday, Thursday & Saturday is cardio. Sunday is my off day. I'm probably going to start increasing my cardio on M/W/F from a 10 minute workout to 20-30 mins plus weights and eventually move up from 30 mins Tu/Th/S to 45 mins.


I think there might be something to Pink's lyrics. When was the last time you threw a handful of glitter in the air? I can honestly say, I'm pretty sure I never have... but I might just one day soon, maybe sooner than later. The first time I heard this song was on some awards show - I'm always in awe of Pink - but this performance may have taken the cake. I didn't hear the song for a few weeks after that again, but every time I hear it, I fall more in love with it.

"Closed your eyes and trusted, just trusted" - why do those words seem so difficult to act upon? I might be able to count on one hand the people I trust with my life... because it's so so hard for me to trust. I'm hopeful in this new journey, I'll learn to trust again, to trust more. One can hope.

I'm looking forward to a day with a sweet 11mos old tomorrow. I think a walk around the trail behind their house (around a lake) is in order. Sunday is all about relaxing. A lounge chair, umbrella, cooler, good book, ipod and my portable fan (Mom I stocked up!) ... on the beach. Waves crashing, kids giggling... that's my bliss.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

For my best friend....

"You've Got a Friend" - James Taylor
When your down and troubled and you need a helping hand, and nothing, whoa nothing is going right, close your eyes and think of me and soon I will be there to brighten up even your darkest nights. You just call out my name, and you know whereever I am I'll come running, to see you again. Winter, spring , summer, or fall, all you have to do is call and I'll be there, yeah, yeah, yeah. You've got a freind.....

Another long day at work, busy busy busy. Don't get me wrong, I like busy, but some days, it's a lot of busy. I'm feelin antsy, unsettled, lately - so by 2pm I was looking forward to the gym. I know, those words shock me, too. I got in and started a 10 min cardio workout on the treadmill. 25 mins and 2 miles later... we started the weight circuit training. This was the full routine - for now. When I get too comfortable, it will change. Double the reps on each station (2 sets of 15 on everything), more weights. Saturday I'll havce it all written out so I can do it myself - and I'll make sure to post exactly what I'm doing.

I like to go go go... and I'm learning rather quickly that I can't. I have to take my time, relax after each set, slow down and give myself time. And by learning I mean Billy kept reminding me. He would purposely start talking to me about variou things, talking to others, so I would take my time and just rest. I told him he's going to make me love coming to the gym. No cell phone, no emails, no hotels...and slowing things down. I'm pretty sure he doesn't think any of those things are bad!

I also learned that it's really easy to breathe when you're not thinking about it. But when you have to think about breathing in to breath out when you're lifting or pushing on the weights, it becomes more difficult. Apparently I hold my breath too.  But all in all - it was a great work out. I was a bit sore (my arms were shaking on the lateral lifts at the end), and a little shakey (sore)... I got home took a shower and ran out to meet some friends I haven't seen in 10 years for dinner.... and I feel good. I can't wait for bed though.

Now on the real subject... for my best friend. It's been almost 8 years since I last lived on the East Coast. Lee Ann has been my best friend for double that. I'm so grateful that time and distance never matter in our friendship. And I'm so glad I'm sooo much closer to her, and we can actually see each other more. People talk about their "best friends" all the time - and a lot of times they seem to have LOTS of best friends. I wonder if they have a best friend like mine though. I can bitch, complain, laugh, cry, snort...and just be ... with mine. Not a day goes by that we don't email, text or talk, even if we're both swamped at work. I knew that when I told her about the gym, she would be supportive. In an email today, she told me she looked forward to reading this blog every morning... I can't tell you how huge my smile was.  I knew when I told her about the insane idea of running a marathon... that I could count on her to be at the finish line. And that statement pretty much sums up our friendship... we'll always be at the finish line for each other.... no matter what. To the sister I never had.... I love you!

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

I'm Alive

"I'm Alive" - Kenny Chesney & Dave Matthews
Stars are dancin' on the water here tonight, it's good for the soul when there's not a soul in sight. This motor's caught its wind and brought me back to life. Now I'm alive and well and today you know that's good enough for me.  Breathing in and out's a blessing can't you see. Today's the first day of the rest of my life. Now I'm alive and well. Yeah I'm alive and well.

I'm alive. And a little bit (lot) bat-shit insane. It was a pretty long day, I slept ok, but it was a long day. Emotional. For whatever reason I couldn't get the life I SHOULD be living right now (married... ) out of my head. I know that THIS is what was meant for me, but I couldn't shake it. My ex was all around me. From Pensacola on the news (Hi, Gulf Coast), to seeing 4 Escambia Country FLA license plates (Pensacola is in Escambia). We were going to get married on a beach in Pensacola - and now they are in danger of being cloesd. Anyway... I found myself getting angrier as the day went on - and looking forward to the gym. I knew tonight was cardio - and nothing more. Somewhere along the way, I decided I needed to set a goal, and challenge myself. What I didn't know, is that challenge was going to be bat-shit insane!

I got off the treadmill and was talking with Billy. He asked me how I was feeling etc. I told him good - and I had a goal - a HUGE goal - that I was ready to set for myself. While on the treadmill, I decided that since 35 is just around the corner (18ish months), I needed to go big... or go home. I decided to tell Billy I wanted to run a marathon for my 35th birthday. .................................................... Let me allow you to take that in. A marathon. In 18ish months. Me. A marathon. 26.2 miles. OF RUNNING. The words came out... and I'm pretty sure I was a deer in the headlights. Billy didn't miss a beat. 6 months... and I'll be running a 5k. Then we'll gradually go up from there. Let me go put that back into perspective. 3.1 miles. In 6ish month. I could walk that with no issues. But I'm running. RUNNING. You know, that thing I believe you should only do when being chased. Yeah.

I know this is going to be one of the hardest mental "games" ever. Maybe I need that. I hope I'm strong enough to do it. I guess I don't have a choice now.

Now I'm alive and well and today you know that's good enough for me. Breathing in and out's a blessing can't you see. Today's the first day of the rest of my life

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

(wo)Man In the Mirror

"Man In The Mirror" - Michael Jackson
I'm gonna make a change, for once in my life. It's gonna feel real good, gonna make a difference, gonna make it right... I'm starting with the man in the mirror. I'm asking him to changes his ways. And no message could have been any clearer....
 
Today was Day 1 of the new chapter. It started out painfully early ... I was awake and working around 645a, simply because I couldn't sleep. It was a long day at work, lots of questions, lots of issues, nothing out of the ordinary lately, but it was a long day. At 7p I headed to FTP (Face the Pain) Fitness to meet with Billy, the owner, and my trainer for now. I did a quick warm up on the treadmill and then he put me through what will be my new 6-day a week work out regimen.  3 days of weight circuit training, 3 days of 45ish mins of cardio. We went through all the machines, making sure everything felt ok and I sort of knew what I was doing. I need to see a massage therapist of even a chiropractor as I have a huge knot right between my shoulder blades that's becoming a bit troublesome, but it actually felt better by the end of the night. If I can only remember to breathe correctly. Blow OUT the weights ...blow OUT the weights... Thanks Mr. Pain!
 
I think that my time at the gym is going to be my favorite part of the day. My cell phone is away. No one is emailing me or calling me. No hotels bugging me. All I have to think about are the weights or cardio I'm doing right then. I like that.
 
I need to start decorating the condo. I need to go through pictures and start printing them, deciding what goes where. Maybe I'll get some thrift-store'ing in this weekend, or yard sailing.
 
Tonight was capped off with a call from my dear friend Sandi, in Omaha. Just when I needed it, like usual, Sandi pops into my little world. Usually via email as we're both at work, but I enjoyed her call and I'm sure they will be more frequent.
 
For now, it's drinking water, watching Glee (my guilty pleasure) and a cuddly kitty.

Monday, June 7, 2010

Unwritten

"Unwritten" - Natasha Bedingfield
I am unwritten, can't read my mind, I'm undefined, I'm just beginning, the pen's in my hand, ending unplanned... Feel the rain on your skin. No one else can feel it for you. Only you can let it in. No one else, no one else can speak the words on your lips. Drench yourself in words unspoken. Live your life with arms wide open. Today is where your book begins. The rest is still unwritten ...-


It's been just over a month since I moved to Virginia Beach. I've spent a lot of time alone, a lot of time talking to Lily (the cat), and a lot of time reflecting. I have a few (great!) friends here that I've spent the past few weekends catching up with, and it's been wonderful. I spent Memorial Day in Vermont with my family and best friend, Lee Ann. There is nothing like the comfort of family and best friends. I feel like "me" again. Whoever THAT actually is.

In the process of figuring out "me" again... I'm doing for me. I sleep in if I want on the weekends. I go to the beach when I want, do my laundry I want, go to bed early and eat Italian Ice for dinner if I want. (Luigi's Cherry if you must know!)

... and today... I joined a gym. FTP Fitness is it's new name, but I really like it's old name... Face The Pain Fitness.  A husband and wife that I already like run it and own it. It's small, the regulars all know each other. The owners make sure you know what you're doing, they help train you even without personal training sessions. Tomorrow at 7p, I enter "Mr. Pain's World". Billy, the husband, and I, have an appointment to set me up with my beginning circuit training session. I told him not to be too gentle with me, and to kick my ass. I'm doing this for me. I met a girl who's lost 23" since October. Inspiring! I can't wait to be her in 8 months!!!

So here's to a new journey. I don't know where the road leads, where the book ends, or how the chapters get written, but I plan on having a lot of fun along the way.