Saturday, December 19, 2009

Tis the Season

I'm taking a busy moment out of a packed Saturday to write. Not that I have anything remarkable going on that would make for a fascinating read, but mainly because I'm waiting to continue baking my chocolate-chip banana nut bread until my boyfriend shows up with the buttermilk that I forgot I needed.

This Christmas I'm going out to Oklahoma to spend the holiday with my Dad. Something I haven't done with my Dad since I was 4 years old. In fact, except for a brief 30 minute road stop while he was moving across country, I haven't even seen my Dad in nearly 10 years. We talk on the phone pretty regularly, and I feel like we have a pretty good relationship, but face-to-face time has been scarce and I'm so excited to see him. I also get to spend some rare time with his side of the family, my aunt and cousins that I really enjoy and recently reconnected with.

The only thing that I'm not excited about is the drive across the plains to get there and back (praying for good weather and making good time) and being away from the family that I usually spend the holidays with. Also, while I'm excited, I'm a little nervous about my boyfriend meeting my Dad for the first time (I know he's nervous too).

So today, getting ready to leave, I'm trying to cram in everything that I can. I'm baking and making candy and fudge. I'm trying to get the laundry and dishes done, and finish wrapping all of the gifts. Then I've got to get packed, wash the car and get a last minute oil change, and mail my packages and letters. I'm also really looking forward to packing up the cat and moving her over to my aunts' house for the week. To say that she doesn't "travel well" is truly an understatement. At least we will make it to my aunts' house quickly, since everyone we pass on the road will think that I'm blaring ambulance sirens (or killing the cat trembling violently in my arms, which is tempting after being clawed for the 5th time).

I hope everyone else has fun enjoying this busy, busy time of year! As stressful as it can be, I truly love the holidays! I can't wait for a 12 hour car ride filled with Christmas music and Harry Potter audio books!

Wednesday, December 9, 2009


Tomorrow is my birthday. I know, another one. Yikes! 30 will be here in the blink of an eye, I'm sure (but not yet!).

But besides my age changing, quite a lot of things are changing around here. Big things. Scary things.

The week started off with my wonderful boyfriend losing his full-time job of 6 years. Pretty sucky. The week of my birthday and 2 weeks before Christmas. What a happy holiday season for us, huh? Thankfully he still has a part-time job, but it still leaves us very short financially. He's already looking for new jobs and I pray he finds something quickly.

I finished final exams for this semester today. I also am praying that I did well and do not need to relive any anatomy hell again. Fingers crossed...

January will mark back-to-school time for both myself and my boyfriend. I will be returning as a full-time student for the first time since I graduated in May (I only went part-time during the fall). My boyfriend will be returning for the first time in 9 years! Wow! He's so excited! Which is adorable, I'm so unexcited about school it's ridiculous, I'm sure his shiny, new excitement will wear off in time, but for now it's very cute.

All of these changes of course have me thinking about New Years resolutions and the things that I'd like to change voluntarily in my life. I failed miserably at last years resolutions, so perhaps I should give it another go in 2010 or modify my resolutions and break them down into more manageable steps. I'll have to brainstorm about this...

So, yeah, big changes coming up. I wonder what else the new year will bring?

Monday, November 30, 2009


Wow, I have been an incredibly lazy blog writer! I really have given it quite a lot of thought, but have just lacked the motivation to carry out those thoughts!

Aside: Happy Birthday to my biggest, oldest, big brother! I love him, and wish we were nearby each other!

Ok, so, back to the topic at hand: Sloth.

Yes, sloth is one of the 7 deadly sins. Yes, a sloth is a slow-moving animal. Yes, I think I may be both of these things, or at least the embodiment of them.

I don't know why I can't light a fire under myself and be one of those crazy productive people that do-it-all and get-it-all done. I'm terribly envious of these people. Also, they drive me nuts (but mainly just because I wish I were like them)! I'm sure if you've read any of my previous posts that you might see that this is, sadly, not a new trend for me.

Currently, at nearly 4 pm, I am still in my pajamas. Yes, that's right, I said it Internet! In fact, I have been in these pajamas for the better part of the last 4 days. My oh-so-sweet boyfriend seems to truly not mind this (that, or he is an excellent liar when he claims that he loves to see me in that Cure t-shirt). As I sit writing this I am sitting on my sofa in the middle of the messiest living room you can probably imagine.

I have spent my long holiday weekend doing a few things: sleeping (from the wee hours of the morning to late afternoon typically), obsessively reading my current novel, grudingly leaving the house for family obligations and some minor shopping, and attempting to attack the paper that has taken up residence in my living room floor.

The paper project is the primary reason that my house has become uninhabitable. I had some kind of wild hair and decided that since I'm having company over later in the week I should start cleaning now!!! And, the obvious place to start cleaning is the papers that seem to multiply mysteriously in my house. I've got boxes full of random papers (not joking), grocery bags with papers, and every surface imaginable has, you guessed it: PAPERS EVERYWHERE! I seriously cannot seem to get ahead of this paper and it is EXHAUSTING.

So, I jumped into this little project with vigor and shredded and trashed and sorted my heart out for 6 or 8 hours. And then, I was exhausted and I gave up. Sadly, the majority of the day I spent working on the paper mess was not enough and now my living room looks, if possible, about 100% worse than it did before I started "cleaning." And now, I'm bored with that little project and don't want to continue it. But I'm going to have to continue it, it would just be rude to expect my company to leap over piles of papers and stuff the way my cat has been doing for the last few days.

I have another problem that compounds this paper issue. I AM A PACK RAT. I have the hardest time parting with anything that I think might possibly be necessary and useful at some imaginary time in the future. Even if I haven't looked at the item in question for years. I realize that this is unreasonable, especially in my 1 bedroom condo. But I have an entire storage unit and overflowing closets to attest to my sickness.

So, when I think about my laziness and sloth regarding my housekeeping, it always makes me think about all of the other areas of my life in which I am horribly lazy. But, honestly, I think that a lot of it boils down to lacking discipline and a regular schedule (and the unexplainable need for 12 hours of sleep per day). I'm sure I'm perfectly human, and not the only one with these types of problems, but it's something that is constantly nagging at me. It is something that I always want to change about myself, and yet something that I seem to be powerless to fight. I feel like if I can magically force myself to go to bed and wake up at the right times that I will have the energy to accomplish every little task that I would like to do. I will suddenly have the time and energy to devote myself to all of the many things I wish I could (and should) do every day. And then, with the best intentions and plans, I just don't. Those good intentions just vanish like a little puff of smoke and my real life takes over and things stay the way they have been for years.

What's the catalyst? What will actually cause and sustain all of the changes that I so desperately want for myself and yet can't seem to achieve? I'd love to hear what works for others...

Thursday, August 27, 2009


Listening to Aim and Ignite the new album from Fun. I've embedded a player here so that you can hear a couple of my favorites from the new album, that I've been anxiously awaiting for nearly a year.

Wow. Wow. Wow. It's spectacular! Go buy it in your local store or on iTunes!

A little background and a disclaimer:

I don't generally like new music. Period. It usually takes quite a while and several hearings for new music to grow on me. I first heard Fun at a Jack's Mannequin concert in the Winter of '08 in Denver. My understanding is that this was mere weeks after they had formed as a band. So they are a brand new band, this is their first album. The lead singer is Nate Ruess, formerly of The Format, and his voice is what grabbed and has held my attention. His voice is amazing, and so unique. From the moment I heard the opening chord of Benson Hedges, which was their opening song the first time I saw them perform, I was hooked. Since that concert I have been hungry for more and have been listening to The Format to hold me over until the album came out Tuesday.

I love the album! Which, again, is unusual for me. I'm not typically someone who can listen to an album from beginning to end, I like to skip through and find my favorites. I listened to this album 3 consecutive times from beginning to end on my commute the next day after its release. 3 times. It's that good. I enjoyed the early releases I was familiar with, like Benson Hedges and At Least I'm Not As Sad, but I also really enjoyed the new songs. Be Calm has a great feel, as does I Wanna Be the One. The Gambler brought tears to my eyes (probably not too safe while driving, but I held it together). So many of their melodies and choruses feel very nostalgic and familiar, like music that I grew up listening to, which I really enjoy.

I cannot urge you enough to get your hands on this album! And even better, if you can see them live, GO! I've seen them live twice, and it is not to be missed. I'm so disappointed that I won't be in the Denver area the next time they are here that I considered driving to another state just to catch another live show. Like my boyfriend said when we saw them take the stage for the first time before they started playing, "Oh great, another hippie, Weezer wanna-be band." He promptly ate his words. Trust me, looks are deceiving! I rarely expect the opening bands to be worth my time or interest at concerts, but I'm glad that, at least once, I've been proven wrong!

Happy listening!

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

I'm a liar. A busy liar.

Ok, so much for all of that updating I was promising! Ha! It will still happen, of course, just not on the schedule I had originally set for myself.

July has been a very unexpectedly busy month for me.

I have registered for more classes for the fall! (I know, right?) "Thank you, sir. May I please have another?," was all I could keep thinking to myself...sigh. It is inevitable though, an education is an asset for a nurse. So, I must complete these last 2 pre-requisite courses and then hopefully I will be accepted to nursing programs ASAP! I go in to interview with one nursing school next week, which is exciting, but I am a bit worried about as they are a new school and I would like to be confident that all of their accredidation is on the up-and-up before I sign up.

This summer has flown by more quickly than I had imagined was possible! It has been so wonderful to not worry about school during that time!

I held a fairly successful 1 day garage sale! Another day to hopefully follow in August! I have so much junk to get rid of, it's about time to sort through some of it.

During July I also helped a friend labor and give birth to her first baby (a LOOOONG process, really, really, painfully long). And am now the proud pseudo-auntie to a beautiful, healthy baby girl.

I orchestrated our 4th annual camping and whitewater rafting trip for the boyfriends birthday! It was a fantastic success, with the exception of some "minor" tent malfunctions. More to follow on that...

Oh, and not to go unmentioned, I have of course made time to see Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince three (3!) times to date! It's fabulous, possibly my favorite film of the series! If you haven't already... GO SEE IT! It is so funny!

So, here we are, August already! How did that happen?!

I am in the middle of planning a fall vacation to celebrate my graduation. But I am working out the technical kinks to posting the Dooce book reading in Denver. I have quite alot of video coverage and must edit it down into acceptable chunks for Vimeo to accept (or else tech support, aka, the boyfriend will do it for me).

More to follow, as always, I will try to be a bit more consistent!

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Bad Cat

This is why flowers never last long at my house...

Notice the fine shredding work on the leaves. She is thorough and detailed, if destructive.

Monday, July 6, 2009

Big News

THE PAPER HAS ARRIVED! It wasn't all a horrible nightmare! I have the proof!

Wait, wait. Let me make a correction. Yes, it was both horrible and nightmarish, but it really did happen.

In other news:

I have been the worlds biggest slacker since graduating. I promise that I will update and end my lazy ways.

I have many ideas for old posts bouncing around in my head, now I have the time to actually get to them (in between all of the napping that I have been catching up on).

Coming soon:

Dooce in Denver! (with video footage from the front row!)

No Doubt!

My Obsession with the Harry Potter Books! (and Jo Rowling)

Adventures in Knitting!

And much more!

Friday, June 5, 2009


Well, it's been a couple of weeks now, but I have officially graduated from college. I am the proud new owner of a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology degree, and a whopping student loan bill!

Graduation day was a little surreal. I was in the gymnasium at school (for perhaps the first time) waiting in line with other classmates for the ceremony to begin, only a few of which I knew. Shortly before the ceremony began they told us all to form lines, in no particular order. This was nice, even though disorganized, because if someone had another person they wanted to stand next to they were able to do so. I just stood next to the people around me, not having any close friends to celebrate this with that were graduating with me that day.

We filed out onto the athletic field on the campus, and it was a surprisingly grand backdrop. I was surprised that downtown Denver could appear this way to me, but maybe it was just how excited I was feeling that day. Several times while walking onto the field and waiting in line my eyes welled up. I have worked for so long for this day, for this achievement. Much longer, I'm sure than most of my fellow graduates that day. 9 years to be exact. 9 years filled with unexpected life events that delayed my education; car accidents, financial problems, my Mom's struggle and death to cancer, and many other relationships that came and went. I was very sad that my parents were not physically there to see their first, and youngest child graduate. Only my Aunts and my boyfriend and his parents were in the audience that day, but their support and excitement for me was phenomenal.

When my name was actually called and I was able to walk across that stage I was so unbelievably thrilled. It was a shock to hear my name be announced! I had really done it! The empty diploma holder that I was handed on stage was lovely... I'm still waiting to receive the real thing.

The ceremony moved quickly, especially considering that over 1,100 students graduated that day. There were no special speakers, which was initially disappointing, but did keep the ceremony moving which I was grateful for in the end.

After the ceremony, it took FOREVER to find my guests to take a few photos with before rushing off to return my gown. The College of Liberal Arts and Sciences had a nice reception for the students and their guests after the ceremony.

The day following the graduation I had the official graduation party! My boyfriends parents hosted it at their home and my Aunt threw the party as a gift to me.

The party was fun, but a little exhausting. Trying to make the rounds to chat with everyone who came for a few minutes left me little quality time for anyone, but I guess that's to be expected. A friend who makes cakes made a fantastic cake with the CU buffalo, Ralphie, on it wearing a graduation cap with Tiffany Blue details (as this is my signature color). I think my guests enjoyed themselves, and I was happy to see so many friends in one place at one time.

Overall, I am so relieved to have this chapter of my life behind me. I certainly didn't enjoy college to it's full potential. I have never been a party animal or a social butterfly; and to some extent, I regret not having been a little more wild and crazy, but I guess that's just a part of who I am. Though I'm certainly not done with school I finally feel like I've finished something. I've seen one major part through from beginning to end.

This is a huge step for me.

I am so thankful for the family and friends who have helped and supported me through this. I could not have survived these last few semesters without my boyfriend, his help has been invaluable. He has seen me at some of my craziest and most stressed moments and quietly and lovingly has helped me, instead of running as fast as possible in the other direction like a sane person would.

I literally yelled OUT LOUD and cheered when I saw my final grade for my Microbiology class~ I PASSED!!! It was truly uncertain whether I would survive that class and seeing that grade was nearly as exciting for me as the graduation itself! I was also so extremely relieved to have passed my other three courses. One of my professors even emailed me to tell me that my term paper was the best out of the entire class! That was a very flattering little confidence boost!

I have never been so anxious to pass all of my classes in any other semester! I guess knowing that so much depended on my success was a little intimidating! I had officially told everyone that this event was finally taking place, sent out the announcements, it was all very real and a little terrifying.

But I did it! I am a college graduate! It's official!

Now, I just hope that they send me the piece of paper to prove it...

Thursday, May 14, 2009

So Close I Can Taste It...

Alright, I'm done with tests for the semester! I took my last final exam (hopefully) this morning at 11:30!

I'm EXHAUSTED. And I'm THRILLED to be so close (only 2 days away!) to graduation! I pick up my cap and gown tomorrow! I've got my graduation and party outfit purchased and ready to go!

I can't wait for the ceremony and party to follow. I've earned it!

I'm also working on an as yet undisclosed project, I'll update as the situation develops. But I will hopefully have some good news after today or tomorrow...

Even though my life will not change overnight just because I have a college degree, I am so hopeful for what this signifies for me. Yes, I definitely have more school in my future, but I'm done with this huge first step.

Saturday, May 2, 2009


Yes, I am officially 14 days away from my college graduation! It's amazing and terrifying and exciting! I also have so much work to do in the next 14 days that I crapped the proverbial brick. Not. Kidding.

Let me run it down for you so that you can share in my stress, terror, and brick crapping. In the next 2 weeks I have to do:

1) 10 page research paper on domestic violence in pregnancy (not yet started, naturally)
2) A whole semester's worth of online history class to do (minus 1 1/2 assignments), which includes reading almost 2 entire books and writing the equivalent of another book
3) 14 microbiology lab write-ups to write
4) A zoo research assignment to go do and write up
5) 2 animal behavior exams to take (before the final exam)
6) My microbiology lab exam
7) A domestic violence exam
8) And last, but not least, the real final exam week's exams! (Which should only be a couple of exams, but are still A LOT of work)

Whew! I'm tired just thinking about this mess! Yes, I know, I shouldn't have procrastinated on some of these things so long. But that's kind of my thing. I procrastinate really well, much better in fact, than I do homework (or anything else that is considered *not* fun). And some of these things are just all due at the same time, which I think is a cruel plan devised by college professors to torture us all simultaneously. Oh, and I've had a crummy semester, that has been monopolized by trying to survive my all-consuming microbiology class. And working a couple of jobs at the same time, that probably hasn't helped either...

So now the announcements have been sent out and I need to make the rest of this happen (you know, the GRADUATING part). I honestly don't know how I can get all of this done, but I know that this is going to be what I spend almost every waking moment of the next 14 days doing. It's a good goal, one that has taken 9 interrupted and imperfect years to accomplish. But I'm so close now that I will do whatever I can to pull this off! Wish me luck! And postings until then will probably be light to non-existent.

Saturday, April 25, 2009


Yes, unfortunately, the 30 Day Shred is currently on hiatus due to my injured knee! I'm very disappointed by this, I was doing really well and starting to see results. By the 5th day I was already down 1.5 lbs! And the soreness was gone! I was ready to increase my weights!

Now, I hope I don't have to start all over again. But I will if I have to!

I will keep at it though. I'm hoping that I will be well enough Sunday or Monday to resume. When the pain, swelling, and need to wear a knee brace subsides...

Wednesday, April 22, 2009


I just finished Day 5 of the Shred! For some reason, I was really tired and lagged during the first circuit. Maybe because I just got home from work?

My soreness was greatly improved today! This is a relief, but now I'm wondering if I should increase my weights since I started with little baby weights :0) I also have somehow hurt my knee during one of the circuits. I'm not really sure when, but during the cardio and squat moves my left knee started having a sharp pain whenever I put any weight on it. I'm hoping that I just stepped down funny and that this will resolve itself before tomorrow.

Not too much to say today. I'm glad I've come back to this for 5 days in a row!

None of my slacker coworkers have started the Shred yet. I'm going to have to get their motivation going again!

Day 5 of Level 1 done! Day 5 of 30 done! 25 to go...

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Day 4 Down

My muscles are still quivering from Day 4 of the Shred. It took me a long time today to work up the energy to do the video. I sat twittering (tweet me @ Snippet) in my workout clothes for over an hour. Before starting the dvd I was thinking, "I know it's only 4 days into this, but I'm bored with this same workout already."

And then, I started the workout...and I was wrong!

This still totally kicks my butt, and I'm not even close to perfecting anything! I'm huffing and puffing shortly after the warm up is over. Today: I didn't have to stop and take a real 1+ minute break! This is a victory! I did, however, take several little 5 second breathers like Jillian allows.

I am not as sore as I was a few days ago. I can see definition in my quads! And (I cheated) I've lost 1/2 a pound so far!

I'm getting curious about what Level 2 has to offer. I'm also beginning to worry that if I haven't perfected Level 1 at the end of 10 days, how will I manage Level 2?!

I wonder how many times I will need to do the Shred before I am able to complete the workout without breaking a sweat like Jillian and The Girls?

Day 4 of Level 1 done! Day 4 of 30 done! 26 to go...

Monday, April 20, 2009


Just. Completed. Day. 3. *heavy breathing*

My first thought when I rolled out of bed this morning and wandered into the bathroom was, "Hey, it didn't just cause me excruciating pain to sit on the toilet!" I consider this a vast improvement personally. Yay! Day 3 started with soreness, but not the same degree of pain, I must be getting somewhere with this. No ibuprofen today!

I will admit, I was a little more sluggish this morning. I just couldn't put the same "oomph" into the cardio during the first circuit. And I had a really hard time with push-ups today. I'm having a difficult time gauging if I'm in the correct form, and I have a sneaking suspicion that I'm not. So, most of my push-up time was spent playing with arm and knee spacing. But, a new first, I managed to stay all the way with "the girls" through the bicycle crunches at the very end! Granted, I'm sure that what I was doing in no way visually resembled the beautiful, graceful movements that they were making, but hey, I did it!

I really love how much time and emphasis Jillian puts into reinforcing good form for the exercises. Naturally, I tend to get a little lazy with my form (hence, the need for a 30 Day Shred, haha). The constant reminder is very helpful for me.

My boyfriend tried this out yesterday for the first time, and seemed surprised when he too found it to be a tough workout! Today, during my Shred, he sent a text message saying, "I hurt." While I feel bad for him, I'm also happy. This means I'm not alone and I'm not a *total* wimp. Muah ha ha! I wonder how my coworkers are faring? I will have to see tomorrow if they are following through with their end of our little bargain!

Day 3 of Level 1 done! Day 3 of 30 done! 27 to go...

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Day 2

Made it to Day 2 of the 30 Day Shred!

When I got up today my thighs, again, were killing me. I was mildly sore elsewhere, like my abs, chest, and back, but the thighs are by far the worst. Sitting down and standing up are sheer torture at the moment.

I started today's workout by turning on the air conditioner a few minutes ahead of time (I overheat really easily) and by taking a couple of ibuprofen. I also stretched a little before turning on the dvd since I was so sore. Neither have helped so far...

I made it through more of the workout before stopping for a brief rest, and completed more of the jumping jacks instead of just marching along. The butt-kicks and jump ropes are also a little hard on me. It's difficult for me to jump off of the ground during the butt kicks. My feet kill me during these moves. They feel like they are just going to seize up and stop supporting me. Has anyone else experienced this? Are my feet muscles just weak? I think set 2 is by far my favorite, so far.

Anyway... I survived yet another day! I came back for Day 2! I consider this alone an accomplishment. It may have even been marginally easier than yesterday (or am I just imagining that?)! I am not typically one to follow through on an exercise routine, I think my record attendance at the gym has been 6 days in a row, so I'm hoping to see this through and make it stick!

Day 2 of Level 1 done! Day 2 of 30 done! 28 to go...

Saturday, April 18, 2009

The Official Day 1!

Step 1- Talk boyfriend into walking downstairs to knock on the neighbors door, since I am physically unable to walk a flight of stairs after first 9 minutes of exercise, 2 days ago. No answer. I'm going to go ahead and assume I'm free to jump jacks and mime jump rope with abandon then.

Step 2- Muster strength to put on workout clothes, shoes, and strongest sports bra I own.

Step 3- Need to hurry up and do this before I die from hunger (but listening to advice to NOT eat before workout). Lay out mat, get weights ready.

Step 4- Cringe as I turn on the dvd player, fearing what I know is about to come. I'm just going to keep repeating in my head: "Yes, just keep ignoring the dull ache in thighs, no, it won't get worse. This will make it better". I'm totally lying to myself.


Step 6- Ok I FINALLY completed the ENTIRE first level 1 exercise! It was painful, and horrible- I won't lie. I did have to stop once, briefly, about 12 minutes in, to open the window (yes, open to the snow!) because I was so hot I thought I might die. There I sat letting the cold, snowy air rush over me, for 2 whole minutes and it felt amazing. Then I went back to the video. When I absolutely couldn't do another second of the cardio moves Jillian was doing, I marched along in place until I had the strength to join in again.

Step 7- Lay down and die on your mat with a cold water bottle. I survived Day 1 of 30.

Ok so, let me say, as of today, I HATE jumping jacks. Butt kicks aren't too far behind. Who knew you could hate jumping jacks?! I'm so glad that I completed the whole 20 minutes, although I made one stop and a few modifications. I'm sure that, even though it doesn't feel like it yet, this will get easier and eventually I can do level 1 as it is intended. I did have a very brief second stop during the stretching cool down- which is BY FAR my favorite part of the workout (1- I'm done!, and 2- I've always loved stretching)- anyway, back to the reason for my stop, I had to make a frantic run to the kitchen with a heaving kitty. She was clearly empathetic for how, I too felt like throwing up, but decided it would be better for both of us if she did. How thoughtful of her. I'm sure the mad dash I made to the kitchen, wrenching myself from my seated position on the mat, made up for some of the cardio I marched through. Thanks Jazzie!

Day 1 of Level 1 done! Day 1 of 30 Done! 29 to go...

Friday, April 17, 2009

Yeah, This is Going to Be Rough

So, as mentioned in the last post, I stopped 9 minutes into the 30 Day Shred dvd. And today? Today?! Today after a WHOLE 9 minutes of the dvd?!!! MY THIGHS ARE KILLING ME!

Sadly, I wish I were joking. Haha, no it's NOT funny! That's really how out of shape I am! Sitting, standing and squatting have all been very painful reminders of how I spent 9 minutes of my evening yesterday!

And yet, it's kind of a good pain... I must be a masochist, because I kind of like it despite all of my whining.

So, yes I'm back at it again tomorrow. I've agreed with 80% of the unwitting coworkers I've talked into doing this with me that Saturday is the official start day!

Here's to actually limping through a WHOLE 20 minute workout of the Shred!

Thursday, April 16, 2009

I'm Pretty Sure that this is Going to Kill Me!

Ok, just put in the 30 Day Shred dvd, and I can't even make it through the first circuit! I have literally done maybe 5 minutes. I'm very, VERY out of shape! My current shape = lumpy, with a lot of flabby mixed in and spread all over, yuck. I'm beet red, my heart is pounding, and within the first 3 minutes I needed to go and turn on the air conditioner in my condo. I'm very worried that all of my grand promises that I WILL do this for the next 30 days have already been in vain.

I'm also terribly afraid that the jumping jacks and jump-roping moves are being extremely rude to my downstairs neighbor. I'm thinking I should leave a polite little note on his door to warn him that I will be trying to murder myself for 20 minutes a day for the next month, and ask if there is a convenient time for me to do this so that my jumping and death shrieks don't disturb him unnecessarily (or so that he doesn't get the wrong idea from my heavy breathing- which, I'm sure was audible for miles).

I'm not sure how the other non-exercisers out there are even doing these moves for a continuous 20 minutes. Since 2 straight minutes of jumping-jacks are difficult for me, how on earth can a 400 lb person possibly do this?! And push ups?! Jillian really is crazy! I may need several day 1's in order to work up to a full day 1.

I'm just calling today a trial run, not the official day 1. I'm going to check on when I might least disturb my poor neighbor and also make sure to write a will.

30 Day Shred

As previously noted, I'm planning to begin the 30 Day Shred dvd by Jillian Michaels from the Biggest Loser.I LOVE watching the Biggest Loser! I love seeing the transformations that take place and wish that I could do this in my own life! Granted, I would have to gain a minimum of 100+ lbs to be on that show, and I don't really think that it would be worth it.

The 30 Day Shred is 20 minutes a day for 30 days straight. I don't really have very much extra time right now, but I reasoned with myself that I probably spend that much time every day just thinking about dieting and/or exercising and/or doing my homework, so I may as well actually start using that time!

That said, I'm considerably overweight. I've also been diagnosed as being potentially pre-diabetic, and diabetes is something I definitely want to avoid if that is at all possible. I am obese according to my BMI, which is currently 32.7. Anything over 30 is considered officially obese. Now, I don't really weigh that much according to the scale, but since I'm only 4"11' a few lbs make a BIG difference on my small frame. That doesn't mean that I'm not horrified when I get on the scale or see myself without clothes on. I'm about 62 lbs above my goal weight. And 38 lbs above the upper limit for a healthy weight for my height. That's enough for the initial stats, I've taken measurements and I plan to repeat them at each stage for comparison. I've also taken "before" photos and they are terribly incriminating, so I doubt that they will ever resurface. Perhaps, someday, I will show some after photos, but that is even doubtful at this point in time. I'm trying to make these changes because I'm unhappy with my weight, appearance, health, and energy levels. So, diet and exercise is needed and is not really optional anymore.

So, my goals are to reach a BMI between 20-25 ultimately, which would be a weight loss of about 40-60 lbs. Also, I would like to return to a size 2 or 4, which would be losing 4-5 clothing sizes. I would also like to do some all over toning, which I would hope would naturally accompany the weight loss. Generally I want to feel more comfortable (dare I even say, PROUD) about my physical appearance. I am planning on taking a cruise in the fall to celebrate my college graduation and I desperately want to feel comfortable in a swimsuit and photos by then.

I HATE exercising! My body also hates it when I exercise and protests loudly the entire time and usually for a few days after. But, I also love being fit and thin and want my rock-hard abs of 9 years ago back! It has been a slow journey to become so out of shape, so I know that getting it back won't be over night either. This is hard for me because I become easily discouraged when I don't instantly see results, so I will really have to work hard to retain my motivation. I want to change my habits. I want to be active and enjoy it. I want to eat healthier.

So to keep up my encouragement I will be blogging about this journey. I know it won't be easy, in fact I know it will be rather torturous. To help with this I've also enlisted a few co-workers to join me in the 30 Day Shred. I like to suffer with company! I've watched the first workout of three on the dvd and it looks unbelievably easy. However, I know that it is not, from talking with other Shred Heads and reading online reviews. I am prepared to have my butt kicked.

I Think I Might Do It!

Let me start by saying I have been a total slacker on several projects lately. School work is really suffering, and, as of today I have less than 30 days to correct this. 30 DAYS UNTIL I GRADUATE!!! I'm so excited and so terrified, it's not even funny. So, since the actual ceremony is in 30 days, that means I have less actual time than that to wrap up all of this work.

This is also the timeline that I've set for myself to begin tackling some other things I've had on the back-burner. Specifically the diet and exercise goals that were part of my New Year's resolutions. And also it's time to start my Total Money Makeover, and finish preparing for nursing school and get ready to apply for the next step.

So to address the first I've got a few plans. I'm technically doing Weight Watchers. Kind of. Well, what I'm really doing is PAYING for Weight Watchers and disregarding most of their excellent advice. Not because I don't want to, I do, and I know from experience that the plan works if you follow it. Again, the important part *IF YOU FOLLOW THE PLAN* is not what I have been doing. I have been much too busy and tired to do anything but eat junk in the past few months. Fast food and at home convenience foods have comprised probably 90% of my diet this semester. So I go in to my weekly meeting and am disappointed with the number on the scale and the size of my pants, but am really not actively working on it so I'm not too surprised. So, I would really like to get focused with this after graduation.

The next part of this plan is EXERCISE! That's right DIET and EXERCISE~ what a novel idea! So in addition to just a vague idea of exercising, I have been inspired and, more importantly, gotten myself excited to do the 30 Day Shred! For the source of my inspiration, check out JoAnn's blog at I met JoAnn at the Dooce book reading (more about this later, again, huge slacker, I know) and you can follow her entire Shred journey on her site. I think that I too will blog about my Shred journey, not because I think it will be terribly beneficial for everyone else out there, but hopefully to hold myself accountable.

The next item on the list is beginning my Total Money Makeover!The Total Money Makeover is a book by Dave Ramsey (I've mentioned it before) and I've become very engrossed in this little financial community. I'm very excited to do this and am eager to get started but I know that it will be difficult. I've never been on a "budget" and I've never been very organized with my finances so it should be a real challenge. Of course the aim of the book is to be completely debt free, which is my ultimate goal, but I would like to aim for paying off my car and credit cards before starting nursing school in the short term. My boyfriend and I are planning on doing this together, so it should get really exciting around my house~ this may be an excellent test of our relationship! I think I will also start a thread on this topic, again to hold myself accountable and to encourage anyone else embarking on this endeavor!

So these are the big things coming up in my life and I am hoping to make some really positive changes. I'm excited and daunted, because I'm not always great on the follow through of my big plans. But I'm going to give this my best effort and hopefully transform myself and my life in the process.

Monday, April 13, 2009

5 Years Ago

I love this picture of my Mom. She's young, beautiful and looks happy.

Today marks the 5 year anniversary of my mother's death. I can't even describe how strange that is. How has so much time passed without me even being aware? Has it REALLY been 5 years? 5 years ago my life changed dramatically. It is something that none of my friends can understand, and I'm glad that they don't have to.

It really seems, in some ways, to have just been a few months ago. The acute pain has, thankfully, dulled by now. I still miss her and think of her everyday, I don't think that will ever change. There are many times when I wish I could call my Mom and ask her a question, "How do I do ____?" or "Do you remember ___?" Simple things like this remind me that she's gone, and infuriate me when others take these daily things for granted. And of course when I think of life changes that have yet to occur for me, it hurts to know that she won't physically be there. College graduation in just over a month. And somewhere in the unknown future, my wedding day or the day I have my first baby. Those are days when you really need your mom, and somehow I will have to figure it out on my own.

My Mom and I had a very interesting, mostly difficult relationship. It was never an easy relationship, we were never best friends, but we loved each other deeply all the same. I feel like, since my Mom got sick and died at such a young age (for both of us), that we never got to that "friendship" stage of our mother/daughter relationship. It was still too much of a parent/child situation, not one where we both regarded each other as women.

I know that the mother I experienced was very different than the one my older brothers did. They got the "young" energetic mom. I was the surprise "late" baby, definitely not planned for. But I was also the girl she always wanted, and I think that she liked being able to dress and style a little girl. Being the baby, I think I also got a lot more individual time than my brothers did though, even from the older, less energetic mom. I also got a very different mom than my brothers did for other reasons, I got the single, post-divorce mom. Mom who was dating, and had moved to another state to start over. I didn't grow up with "Mom and Dad" the same way they did and this changed things significantly.

But today, 5 years later, I would like to remember some of the good things about my Mom. For all of her shortcomings she was a remarkable woman in her own regard. When I was young and growing up in Alaska, she was so active and just fun, she did everything. She worked, she played fast-pitch softball, was active in Jazzercize, and had a family and a social life. I don't have the energy now, in my 20's to do all of that! Mom had the most infectious laugh, and when she really got going was so funny. She was a great cook, and had fingers that were impervious to heat and hot grease; I've never known anyone beside her to reach into a hot skillet and flip a frying tortilla with their bare fingers! She loved to travel. She loved animals, which is good, since she always wound up caring for them at home. Most of my memories of her were of her well-dressed and well-groomed for work. Nails always done, hair always curled, dress, hose, heels, the whole package. Obsession perfume, Carmax lip balm. Always thin. Playing crazy, wild, noisy family games of Yahtzee.

Now when I make it back to Oklahoma, to the small town where my parents grew up and married, I am always recognized as her daughter without any introduction given. The first question I hear, always in a Southern drawl, "You must be Donna Sue's girl?" Followed by, "You look just like her!" This used to make me uncomfortable. That strangers I didn't know, had probably never met, knew whose child I was or recognized another person in my face. Now, it's an odd compliment. I look like my mother; and when she was young, before life and cancer changed her, she was beautiful.

This was shortly before Mom's passing. It was the last time that we were all together.

Saturday, April 11, 2009

Just Thinking...

Eating THAT many grapes in one sitting was probably not such a great idea.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

I Don't Even Know What to Say...

I think I must be a terrible, terrible best friend. I just spoke to my best friend, who I haven't talked to for a few weeks (at least it seems like a few weeks, has it been longer?) and heard some disturbing news from her. When I called her the other day she didn't answer her phone. That alone is unusual, she almost always answers. I did have a nagging little thought at the time that it was odd, but quickly dismissed it. She's busy, I'm busy, no big deal- we'll catch up another time.

I was very surprised, no shocked, when she called me back tonight and told me she's been having problems with postpartum depression. I'll admit, I've spoken with her at times in the last few years since she first became a mother, and more recently, since having another child, when she has seemed overwhelmed. But I never imagined that she would or could breakdown like this. She's so quiet and reserved, but also so strong, smart and capable. Not that I'm faulting her. She is in no way responsible for this, this can happen to anyone.

More than anything I feel guilty. How could I not have known she needed help? Am I a terrible friend because she didn't confide in me? I wanted so much to tell her on the phone how much I love her, like family. She has been there for me since middle school, through high school and college, through my mothers death.

But I know how hard it is to admit that you're depressed. I can never ask for help. The thought of breaking down and crying in front of someone is unthinkable. I think I've been dealing with depression for years now, certainly since my mother's death and, to be honest, before that too. I don't ask for help, I don't want to admit this to anyone, I almost never do. Why would I expect her to be different?

I'm hurt that I didn't know sooner, that I couldn't be there for her before now. Granted, I don't know what I can do for her from states away, but I would do anything for her in my power. I always hope that she knows that she can come to me with anything without the fear of judgement. I would hope that we haven't lost that intimacy in our friendship, but I fear we might have.

I wish I had reacted better on the phone, but honestly, I had no idea what to say, other than, "I'm sorry you have to deal with this. Is there anything that I can do?"

Monday, March 30, 2009


So last week was my spring break from school, tonight is my last night before having to suck it up and start paying $11.00 in parking fees again every week until May 16th. I had a fairly short list of things "to do" this week.

1) Go to zoo for research: Done!
2) Write zoo research assignment: Done!
3) Write microbiology paper on E. Coli: Um, still "in progress"
4) Catch up on history assignments: Only slightly "in progress"
5) Clean house: I don't think my boyfriend cleaning up a little in the kitchen or bathroom counts
6) Go to gym: Didn't even come close to happening

So, two-ish out of six, it will be three before tomorrow, as my paper is due then, but it might be a late night since I felt that 6 hours of procrastinating was neccessary. That valuable time included: a snack, wasting time on my iPhone, watching the news, a snack, a nap, and reading blogs for the last hour, with more iPhone time sprinkled throughout.

Time to get with it! I need to drag some motivation somewhere out of the depths of myself if I am truly to survive this semester. I'm just not sure how. I'm so tired...maybe I need another nap first.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Stress Bubble

I think I'm living in one big stress bubble. Nothing seems easy about my life at the moment. And, in all reality, I don't have the time right now to fix it or change it, only time to try to hang on and survive.

I'm really anxious about school at the moment. I'm terrified that I will mess up and somehow not pass all of my classes, which means that I won't graduate in May. This may just be because I actually have set a deadline and told EVERYONE I know that this is finally happening. Also, it may be because I'm really struggling with my microbiology lecture despite all of the effort and perfect attendance I've put in (a first for me)- I do kick butt in the lab, however. Also, I'm a few weeks behind in my online history class- this will have to be corrected next week when I'm on spring break (I really know how to party).

Hmm, my home is still in total disarray. My diet and exercise routine is still virtually non-existent, except for a vague thought that I really should do something about my weight and that I hate seeing myself in the mirror. To add to this stress is the fact that I'm going to be seeing my Dad in a couple of weeks for the first time in 8 years. My parents have always been critical of my weight, even when I was super thin and in great shape. I can't imagine what I'll hear now that I've gained roughly 50 lbs. Nonetheless, I am thrilled to be seeing him.

Hmm... other stressors: work, money, blah, blah, blah...

I would love to change all of these things RIGHT NOW, but I'm beginning to think that I just might have to wait until May, when graduation is over to get my life together.

Monday, March 2, 2009

Just Wondering...

Do you ever have a cat sitting on your lap, totally in the way (on purpose), while you are trying to work on the computer? Demanding attention, but angry with you at the same time? Perhaps trying to bite your wrists as you type? Or maybe biting you in retaliation for giving her said attention? And then looking even angrier and confused when she gets smacked upside the head for biting her mother?

I'm sure you'll understand the brevity of today's post...

Today's post brought to you by a day in the life of a cat owner.

Monday, February 16, 2009


Hmmm... haven't written anything in a month, I've wanted to, but I've been terribly lazy. Currently, I'm avoiding doing some much needed (and very close to the deadline) homework. Oh yeah, and the Microbiology test I have tomorrow, I'm also not studying for that...

Do you see a pattern? This is kind of how I've been feeling the last month or so. I started off the new year very motivated. I was ready to make great changes, devote myself and throw all of my (non-existant) energy into them.

My house has not been cleaned in months, literally, months. There is clutter EVERYWHERE. The furniture has not been rearranged back to how it should be, even though the Christmas stuff has been gone for over a month. I'm lucky to pick clean clothes out of the laundry basket, and only wash when I'm out of clean underwear or socks, whichever comes first. This blah feeling has carried over into pretty much every area of my life lately, and I'm a little tired of it. Yes I'm tired of being tired and unmotivated and feeling lazy, but I don't have the energy to climb out of this rut.

Items of note:

I am thrilled about the events that took place January 20th. I am so proud that our new President has truly hit the ground running and is getting right to work, despite the pig-headed, childish opposition that he has met. I know that the same cannot be said about the last leader of our nation. I love the patriotism and attitude of change that this new leader has generated. The turn out at the inaguration was amazing, and even more amazing was the reports of good behavior and decreased arrests amid the hugely crowded environment in our nation's capital.

Work has been both better and worse, hopefully things will continue to improve, though I'm not sure which path would be considered improvement.

Dieting has been awful, I'm doing a terrible job. Exercise too, I really need to get things together, my health depends on it (probably my energy level too).

I had a very nice, but low-key Valentine's Day. Daniel and I went out to lunch and exchanged gifts early in the day, since he had to work that night. I got several cool DVD's, a cd, and this:

The cutest purse pen.

I know it sounds superficial, but it is so exciting to open one of these little blue boxes, thrilling even. It is the 4th time I have had the opportunity to open one of these boxes. Isn't he a keeper? Also cute, he got me two cards, because he found two he really liked and just wanted to give me both. I gave him Guitar Hero Worldtour for Wii (I'm a keeper too).

I hope I have more good news to report next time. Now I'll have to really get to work, that homework won't do itself.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Getting Ready

My New Year really started with a bang. I was in bed by 10:30, which is hilarious, considering what a night owl I am. I'm never in bed that early, but New Year's Eve of all nights? In all fairness, I didn't feel well. I had some medical stuff done earlier that day, so I took some pain medication and slept well. I have felt rotten since. I have had the mother of all colds that just seems to keep morphing into new symptoms with a low-grade fever that I just can't shake.

On the plus side, I got a Wii Fit for an anniversary gift from my boyfriend, which has been alot of fun! Though I haven't used it as much as I would like to since I've been sick. Also good, I re-started Weight Watchers for the New Year. I've lost 3 lbs so far between my 1st and 2nd weigh-ins! It's small progress, but I'll take it! I would really like to work myself up to doing Wii Fit every day at home and going to the gym 4-5 days a week, but I'll have to see how my semester shapes up. I've also stopped eating out lunches at work, this has been helpful financially and for my diet.

I'm getting ready for my last school semester to start in five days, and still tinkering with my class schedule of course. I feel overwhelmed with all of the things I would like to get done around the house before that happens, but since I have one day off between now and then, we'll see how that goes. Things like starting the school semester off with a clean house, or even just little things like moving the Christmas stuff back into storage. I'm really excited about this being my last semester, but I'm also really stressed out about it and, as always, my financial aid not coming through yet. Every semester, it seems to not come until it's a few days too late when I'm having a heart attack about how I'm going to buy my books, this semester is unfortunately not any different. I'm very worried that Microbiology may kill me and prevent me from getting into nursing school, but I don't think the rest of my classes will be too terrible- hopefully they all won't require research papers.

I think I have finally averted this work crisis. I was made a pretty terrible job offer, one that included no benefits and 1 to 1 1/2 days per week of work. As nice as that sounds for my social calendar, it is simply not enough for me to pay my bills with. I'll be working the equivalent of 2 days per week and getting some benefits, with more hours available if the office is busy enough, so I think this is just the best I can do for now. Unfortunately, the situation is just not the greatest one to work with, but I don't think that my last semester of school is the ideal time to job hunt if I can help it.

I've been thinking alot about my resolutions, I posted most of them here. I'm starting slowly, but I hope I will gain momentum and hit them all. I would really just like this year to be one where I put alot of aspects of my life into place, I feel fairly out of balance right now. I think graduation will be a big step in the right direction for this, one that will hopefully help some of my other resolutions to snowball and become easier and faster to accomplish.