Tuesday, August 26, 2008
The only times we really miss are those nights that we eat out, which isn't often. Other than that, the vitamin containers stay sitting out on our kitchen counter as a daily reminder while we're cleaning up after dinner. Go us!
Perhaps that is because the only pair of glasses I've had for the last 3 years are from a really old prescription. They get the job done, but I wouldn't trust myself to drive with them. I finally buckled down, made an appointment and dropped some major cash to get a new pair.
Maybe I'll actually venture outside with these...
**picture soon to be added**
Too bad it was for the WRONG TEAM! ::hanging head in shame::
I am still mostly a defender so I was in front of our goal, blocking an opposing player, when our goalie smacked the hell out of the ball. It hit squarely on the side of my foot. A perfect connection. And rebound straight into our own net. Doh!
The heat has already put a few cracks in the new paint, but it looks so much better than it did before with dull bit of paint flaking off all over. So this task is officially done.
Monday, June 9, 2008
I went an entire month with no fast food AND I took a multivitamin every, single day.
I even got my husband to take the vitamins with me, which was a very good thing. Without his regimented self-discipline, I would have had to restart the vitamin count-down many, many times over. But he was good. Several times he reminded me right before bed that we needed to take them. This Saturday, when I was about to pass out from mojito overdose, he even brought them to my bed with a glass of water. That saved my butt! It was the LAST day of the month-long streak. How badly would that have sucked...
So I'm taking them. And I will continue to take them. And hopefully this will become more and more ingrained into my daily habit. But as for the fast food thing, my month+ streak ends today. I forgot my lunch and am starving so it's off to grab a "healthy" salad from Wendy's.
Feels good to do those though. Good luck to everyone on their uber-healthy goals too.
Friday, May 30, 2008
Well, during our last game we were short on players. So as the game progressed, we started getting worn out and not running as much. That's when I noticed that there were only 2 people playing on offense - the rest of us were lolly-gagging at the back - so I ran up to help.
During one exciting play, my husband, me and one of the other guys had the ball bouncing all over the place at the opponent's goal. Someone made a shot. It missed and bounced off the wall. Someone else took a shot. Same thing. Their goalie dived to try to catch the ball, but he missed and somehow I took possession. I had a window! And I was going for it!
I knew I had to kick it high because someone had fallen on the ground in front of me. I knew the goalie was still recovering from his last dive. So I lined the shot up and took it. And it was perfect! It was high, right in the middle, and dropping, about to go in, and ohmygod...
... and then...
...some asshat - NOT the goalie - reached up with his hand and bumped the ball just enough to bounce it up and out of the scoreline! Which, by the way, if you don't know is completely illegal! It's cheating, you @$#^@$#% #$%#@$^ %^*$%^!
It would have been my only goal ever! And you stole it from me! You mean, stupid boy!
So I didn't score after all. :( And he didn't even get sent off. Bad call. But I'm not bitter.
Tonight we're playing again. Kharmically speaking, I'm due.
A - Attached or Single: Attached
B - Best Friend: My husband, but since that's probably cheating... Shelley!
C - Cake or Pie: Pie! I hate chocolate cake.
D - Day of Choice: Saturday for obvious reasons...
E - Essential Item: a good bra
F - Favorite Color: blue
G - Gummy Bears or Worms: worms - they're more fun to play with
H - Hometown: Slow-deatha
I - Indulgence: shoes, cheese Doritos
J - January or July: January - my b-day's in January
K - Kids: not until I graduate
L - Life is incomplete without: challenges (I'd get seriously bored otherwise)
M - Marriage Date: April 29, 2006
N - Number of Siblings: two - a younger bro & sis
O - Oranges or Apples: I am addicted to oranges
P- Phobias or Fears: snakes & religious fundamentalists (I'm reading Under the Banner of Heaven, and it has warped my mind)
Q - Quote: "When I'm good, I'm very good. But when I'm bad, I'm better." - Mae West
(I don't really have a favorite quote but I like this one. I found it when I was looking for the one that goes something like: If I can't serve as a good example, then I'll have to serve as a horrible warning.)
R- Ring size: I forget! 7, I think...
S - Season: spring
U - Unknown fact about me: (Related to Joyce's) During my kindergarten graduation, I won a trophy for memorizing and reciting my bible verses perfectly every single day. Now I am agnostic.
V - Very favorite stores: DSW!!!
W - Worst Habit: procrastinating (as in now)
X - X-ray or Ultrasound: ultrasounds don't mutate your DNA
Y - Your Favorite Food: crème brûlée, oranges, watermelon, cheese Doritos
Z - Zodiac: Aquarius
Wednesday, May 28, 2008
Tonight while Greg was playing (and winning!) poker, I scoured my closets and drawers. Culling clothing! Clothing I've had since high school! I wish I was kidding, but I actually pulled out a dress I wore to take my senior pictures. How sad is that... That dress was over 13 years old! It's time to let go.
So I'm doing it! I'm taking clothes and giving them away to friends and charities. Surely someone can make use of these things I haven't touched in years. And here's what I've thrown out so far:
12 dresses - twelve!
4 pairs of jeans
5 pairs of shorts
Go me! Hopefully I'll have another wave of bravery and conviction soon because it actually feels good to lighten my load.
And may I just say, this was an emotionally difficult job for me, made all the more challenging by a kitty who is obsessed with laying on clothes.
I can't tell you how many times I had to disturb her peace to get at those things she had perched herself upon. But she's pretty cute, right... :)
Thursday, May 8, 2008
Wednesday, May 7, 2008
That price may seem steep, but right now I'm traumatized by the thought of stripping and repainting any wood surface for a while. $150 is worth it! We're picking out paints tomorrow, and hopefully it'll be done by the week-end.
Monday, May 5, 2008
After briefly recovering from an ill-advised home improvement project on Saturday (oy!), we met up with our friends Shawn and Jim at the bowling alley for some double-date friendly competition. I must say the girls completely dominated in the first 2 games. My scores were 136 and 132 - I won both! Then it all went to pot, and I came in dead last with a 92 - more representative of my typical bowling prowess.
But I'm taking this as a good omen. Maybe I should challenge Greg to a game soon in the man cave. He hung the board ages ago, but we haven't used it once. I think it might be time...
How? How is this even possible?
The last time I renewed, I gave it the full, recommended 6 weeks processing time and still had to pay the expedition fee to get it back to catch a flight to Hungary. This with condemnations and I-told-you-so's from Greg up to my eyeballs! The time before that, we're talking MAJOR CRISIS. I had sent in the application and was desperately waiting for it to arrive so I could take my first international flight alone as a new high school graduate going away on an exchange program to France. Three days before my flight, we got the envelope in the mail. My mom came running back from the mailbox screaming for joy and waving it in the air. She handed it to me. I ripped it open, looked inside. It was all my information - my name, my address, my birthday - with SOME STRANGE, BEARDED MAN'S FACE!!! I just broke down in tears right there in our driveway and kissed my plane ticket and my five weeks overseas goodbye. I was devastated.
Well, the wonderful people at the county courthouse listened to my tear-stained story of woe and fixed everything. Somehow they mailed it off and got it back to me two days later, a day before my departure. By the time I arrived in the Paris airport, I hadn't slept in days due to the worry.
This time it took them SEVEN days to receive, process and send back?!?!? I'm... dumbfounded... impressed... in shock...
Maybe the passport gods are making it up to me for all my bad luck in the past. Or maybe it's some force conspiring with my husband to show me the virtues of not procrastinating. I have no idea. But I'm so happy that there will be no more passport crisis again for another 10 years. Hooray!
By the way, the new passports are impressively artistic. Each page has some all-American scene - Mount Rushmore, the Liberty Bell, the Mayflower landing, etc. So pretty! I'm hoping I'll soon fill them with stamps, but as for now, I'm officially counting this task as done. yay!
Saturday, April 26, 2008
My last passport was issued in the summer of 2005. In the spring of 2006, I got married and changed my name, thus making my new/old passport (with fantastic picture - a rarity for me) obsolete. For two years I've been putting this off. I've been purchasing tickets and traveling under my maiden name, even though all other legal documentation clearly states my married name. It's been fine so far, but I'm always a bit nervous when I do it. And instead of pushing my luck even further, I've finally succumbed.
I mailed off my passport renewal with name change today. And I'm not even under a deadline. Progress!
The only thing I'm a little sad about - and this is sheer vanity so I'm sorry - is that this is going to be the picture on my passport book for the next ten years:
It's not so bad. What really bugs me though is that I'm about 10 pounds too heavy right now. And when I gain weight, I'm like a chipmunk. I get FAT cheeks. Do you see those fat cheeks in that picture?!? They're enormous! They just take up so much... space!
And now every time I travel the world, I'm going to look down and see this picture and think to myself My God, someone tell that poor girl to lay off the acorns!
We've recently started taking glucosamine tablets in the hopes that maybe, just maybe, these things actually work. To be quite honest, I'm more than a little skeptical - skeptical of the whole vitamin, nutritional supplement and herbal remedy industry that's flourishing today. Its not that I don't believe any of them actually work. Its just that the entire industry is completely unregulated in any way.
(I just erased the beginnings of a long, rambling tirade that I started typing, but I'll spare us all. You can find much better debates on this subject elsewhere...)
The bottom line is that no one really knows whether or not glucosamine (and others) work. And even if they are effective, the tablets we buy at the grocery store may not be in the right form or dosage to be effective. So I guess we're just taking a leap of faith on this one and sticking with the philosophy that it can't hurt to try and hoping for the best.
So since we're taking this horse-pill of a daily supplement, I thought we might as well take a horse-pill of a multivitamin as well. And that's what we're doing - glucosamine and Centrum every day for a month.
We've started about a week ago, but we missed a day so I'm being honest and zeroing out the tally.
As of today, we've taken them two days in a row. I'll try to keep us honest until May 22nd - a full four weeks - at the very least. (I have always been crap at daily anythings so this may be the longest "month" ever...)
Greg and I just watched the movie Fast Food Nation tonight. It's absolutely horrifying. Greg actually read the book a few years ago and was completely traumatized by it. He would always stop and read passages to me because he was just so astounded by the atrocities from every angle of this story - animal cruelty, pollution, workers' rights, disease, contamination, urban sprawl, illegal immigrants, the list goes on and on...
After seeing this movie, now seems as good a time as any to start this task of shunning all fast food from my diet for a month.
In fact, maybe its time to think about that going-vegetarian one too... The slaughter house scenes in the movie are graphic and hard to stomach. Not to mention the implications of working conditions, health- and safety-wise. Yes, I think I've been scarred enough to forgo my assembly-line foods for a while.
If this is a topic that interests you, you may want to check out the Meatrix animations that accompanied the extra features too. I realize they're every bit the emotionally manipulative propaganda machines that any fast-food chain is, but they basically summarize the message of the movie.
(And this reminds me that I've always wanted to read Upton Sinclair's The Jungle too. I'll have to add both of these books to my very long list...)
While in Mississippi visiting Karl & Terry, the whole huge group played a few rounds of "Killer", the dart game where you have to hit your number 3 times to become a "killer" and then you can start knocking points off of other people by hitting their number. If a killer hits a person's number so many times that they go to zero, then they've been killed.
I don't know how this happened, but I totally WON the first game. I killed EVERYONE. Mwaaaahaaahaaaha!
Check out my maniacal, evil smile...
Friday, April 25, 2008
Karl was scared awake but quickly recovered and started passing the beers around. A good time was had by all.
The next morning Karl and Terry took us on a tour of the University of Southern Mississippi campus. It's gorgeous and everything was in bloom.
Karl's a chemistry professor there so he showed us around the labs too. Oh, the joys of geekdom...
Later that night we enjoyed dinner and darts a local pub. It was great fun, even when Brianna was almost accosted by the sloppy, drunken lesbian.
The next day, Karl impressed us with his mad barbq'ing skillz.
They were, in fact, delicious. For a Brit from Essex, he's done an amazing job embracing this whole deep, southern lifestyle. After dinner, it was philosophizing time around the fire pit.
The perplexed look on my face here because I had just been arguing (heatedly) with Karl about something with which I have zero personal experience. I do that when I've had a few too many to drink and someone antagonizes me. Karl was having great fun. He lives to rile people up.
The next morning we took our tylenols, ate a huge breakfast and said our sad goodbyes. :(
I miss them. Even if Karl's boarish, pig-headed declarations piss me off sometimes. :)
Since we drove to Mississippi in the middle of the night, we didn't get to take in any scenery. But on the ride back home, we caught what we missed the first time. The most surprising bit was to see the effects of Hurricane Katrina three years later. One second, we'd look out the window to views of fields and fields of trees.
A few seconds later, we'd pass an expanse that had been whipped and wripped to shreds.
Its pretty amazing to imagine the kind of force that could mow down a forest...
Thanks, Karl & Terry, for being amazing hosts! You handled the invasion beautifully. :)
Thursday, April 24, 2008
I'm frustrated with research and procrastinating so I did a quick search of vessel sinks to occupy a few minutes between reading papers. I've planted the seed in Greg's head of installing one of these in our guest bathroom, and I think he'd be up for it.)
So here are a few that I found and dig:
The last 3 wouldn't go with my previous decor ideas at all, but the plans aren't set in stone and could easily change. I love the feel of the 3rd sink from bottom. How awesome would it be to have a bathroom with an exotic, Moroccan/Old World style. In fact, I'd love to do our entire house in that style... Ah, if only money were no object.
- Would I necessarily have to do a wall-mount faucet with these? And how difficult/expensive would that change be?
- I'd have to redo the counter too = more $$$. But I was hoping to do that anyway.
- Am I going way over-the-top with this whole bathroom redesign?
Again, this was just a quick search. I'll definitely do more research before committing.
If you want to tease yourself, check out Porcher. My eye kept being drawn to their absolutely beautiful basins, but since those run at around $1,500+ each, I think I better put them out of my mind...
I know a lot of people gasped at the prospects of me adding a touch of blonde to my hair - my mom, sister, husband, etc. But I've gotten a lot of compliments on it. SO THERE, butt-holes! And its not that far of a stretch for me. I was a tow-headed kids until I turned about, I don't know, three(?), four(?), five(?). Then the entire time I was a teenager, I had natural highlights from spending so much time out in the sun playing tennis. Bottom line: I like it so I'm keeping it.
I just made an appointment for tomorrow to have it done again. I promise to post pictures this time.
Wednesday, April 9, 2008
My friend Beth and I just grabbed lunch at The Spicy Pickle near campus. Its a bit hidden and for someone who usually brown-bags it, I'd never noticed it. But Beth apparently loves this place. I had a super-thin crust pizza with a pesto sauce, mozzarella, tomato, artichoke hearts, and feta cheese. Mmmm, feta... And I totally at the whole thing (I'm kinda regretting that fact now). She had some panini that looked really yummy too.
If you're within walking distance, its totally worth the little hike. 4 down, 16 more to go.
Tuesday, March 18, 2008
And with that, I promise to give you some much needed TLC in about a week after I've accomplished goal #70 - Drive to a state I've never visited.
Our friends Karl & Terri moved to a tiny town outside of Hattisburg, Mississippi a few years ago after Karl got a professorship there. He just celebrated his 30th birthday this past month, and although we couldn't make his awesome canoing trip through the Grand Canyon, we did make plans with Terri to surprise him for a belated celebration. On Thursday, we'll make the 10-hour drive through Louisiana and into Mississippi with Mark and Brianna. We're also meeting friends from Florida who'll be traveling from the other direction.
I love road trips if only for the excuse to load up a car with trash mags and even trashier food (or at least what might marginally pass for food). Twizzlers, gummy bears, nacho cheese Dorritos - all the naughty things that are not normally allowed to reside in our house for fear of instant inhalation and subsequent 20 pound weight gain. Bring it on! My usual celebrity gossip fix has also been cut off recently due to my extreme productivity. Luckily, I'll be sharing car space with someone who has an equal, if not greater, addiction - we're talking about a girl who actually subscribes to Us Weekly, people - so she can fill me in on everything I've been missing over the last few months.
If all goes well, we'll all arrive at their place around midnight on Thursday evening. And then let the drunken debauchery begin...
I should really start prepping my liver now.
Friday, February 22, 2008
When I have more time, I'll definitely investigate this possibility further. Until then, I'm making mental notes of which fave recipes to include.
Bon apetite, everyone!
Friday, February 8, 2008
Have you closed your eyes yet?
I'm serious! Close them! You promised...
Let's talk about our downstairs half bathroom for a minute. The first time I laid eyes on this little box of a room, I could feel its shackled little soul crying out for a makeover - so sad.
Since first entering the market in 1989, I am sure, it has been trapped in its current dowdy and unspired state of being. The walls are covered in a subdued blue wallpaper with little white and pink flowers. Ew. Half of one wall is occupied by a huge square mirror tacked directly onto the drywall above the sink. Boring. Showgirl lights line the upper edge of the mirror. Ehhh. And the cabinet under the sink is oak. Its a lonely, little room that only has an audience when we have guests or are cleaning out the kitty litter.
I'd love to transform this space and do something creative with it - without it being an eyesore or something that makes my husband cringe when he first lays eyes on it. I'd love to have people go in there, and after a little initial shock, take a step back, look around and find bits of interesting detail and inspiration. And do all of this within a reasonable budget... That may be the tricky part. (And suggestions or website referrals are welcome here.)
Everyone knows that when it comes to redecorating, you get the most bang for your buck in paint. Since we moved in, I knew I wanted one room in our house to be a deep, dark, sexy red color. And since this is such a small space, I don't think it'd be too overpowering here. Step 1: The major color - sexy red. However, I was worried that painting all 4 walls in this shade may be too intense.
Then I saw this project! The couple needed to make a nursery and were inspired when they found an awesome fabric pattern. They transferred the pattern onto their wall and painted accordingly. The effects were pretty amazing. I love it! And this gave me more inspiration. I've been seeing all of these beautiful damask patterns on everything from chairs to dishes to wall decor. So in keeping with the spirit of the above project, I thought I could use one wall in the bathroom and do the same pattern transfer with a not-too-busy damask. I found a few sites that had interesting patterns, but most were too dense. Sending our guests into an epileptic fit, trapped in a tiny room with an over-stimulated repeating pattern, would kinda defeat the purpose, ya know. So I decided that instead of having the entire wall covered, I could just have a bit of the pattern peeking out one of the sides. To give you a better idea of what I'm talking about, here are a few first draft schematics.This is not necessarily the pattern I'd stick with, although I do like it. In fact, I found a few contenders when I stumbled across this website. I love the swirly, organic designs featured on their main links, but it may be too "girly" for Greg's taste. That's still a work in progress. Step 2: Have a partially patterned focal wall.
Next, the mirror. I like that we have such a large mirror on that wall, but its just so blah. I'd like to either a) knock it down, which would probably require taking a sledgehammer to it - not very appealing, and find a more stylish oval mirror to hang in its place, or b) find some way to embellish the borders of the existing mirror. Mirrors are ridiculously expensive so I'm going to brainstorm on option b before doing research into option a - unless, of course, a beautiful and yet well-priced masterpiece happens to fall into my lap. I think I could add a painted wooden border around the edges of the mirror or get crafty and create some sort of mosaic glass or mirrored border that I could affix directly to the surface of the existing mirror. We'll see. Step 3: Mirror sexification.
And finally, Steps 4 & 5, if I can afford them... the lighting and the sink. This is going to be hard because I have a feeling the contemporary options I have in mind are also going to be the most expensive. And when I picture the end product, I always see the light fixture (especially) pop. Whether or not I can afford to replace the sink to a sleeker version is up in the air, but at the very least, I'd like to change this:...into something much more interesting, like this:...but without the creepiness.
(Is it just me or does this look like something straight out of the Matrix? It just might spring to life, chase me down and twist my little digital head off with its mechanical tentacles, which would, of course, also kill me in the physical world. Ew. Enough of that...) Ok, something very unique but without going way over the top. Any suggestions?
To be quite honest, I haven't solidified in my head what I want the end result to be. The vague pictures I covet in my mind's eye may not jive with the other changes I've planned so I'm expecting the idea of the room to morph as it starts taking shape. It might be one of those things that when I see it, I'll just know.
In the meantime, I'd love to hear feedback and/or suggestions.
Thursday, February 7, 2008
But those two points she earned helped seal the deal for our second win! This time the score was 4-1. Its so good to see how much we've improved as we've played. Both of these teams kicked our butt last season - proof positive that a little practice goes a long way.
My next opportunity to achieve #52 is at tomorrow's game. Here's hoping...
Wednesday, February 6, 2008
But my eye is on the prize, babies. I WILL score a soccer goal dammit! I've had two near misses. But I was totally robbed both times. The sweet glory of momentary soccer super-stardom is upon me. I can taste it.
If I score tonight, I might be the first one on our team to score a legit girl goal. (Girl goals count for 2 points instead of 1 on coed teams - the feminist and the competitor inside me struggle with this concept from time to time.) Dilek and Brianna have officially each scored before, but they were both accidental deflections off of their unsuspecting body parts. Brianna got it in the butt. Dilek got it in the right boob (poor thing). No. Wait. Katie actually scored a beautiful goal in our first season. But since its a new season, I'm still going to count it. :)
Wish me luck!
Friday, February 1, 2008
This year I'm planning on reusing an old idea that never came to be. A few years ago I planned a couples massage for Greg and I for our romantic quasi-Valentines. We got up early on a Saturday for our appointment, drove out to the place, and waited. And waited. And waited. One half of our masseuse duo never showed! Can you believe that? How rude!
So it never happened. Well, this year it will dammit! I'm booking our appointment tomorrow.
Thursday, January 31, 2008
Ok, here goes.
Six factoids about moi:
1. I am almost physically repulsed when I hear a song on the radio by the band Rush. I have no idea why. Neither the songs nor the band have any kind of emotional or sentimental connection to me (that I'm aware of). I don't know anything about them. All I know is that when I hear Geddy Lee's voice, I want to scratch my eyes out or jump out a window. Or I could just change the station...
2. The most ridiculous commercials can make me choke up and want to cry. Even when PMS is not a factor. I am very conscious of the fact that its all a well-calculated ploy by evil advertising executives, but I can't help myself.
3. I am freakishly strong. I discovered this as a child when I'd fight with my younger siblings or my cousin Melissa over the stupid stuff kids fight about. They'd always be the ones to get hurt. And they got hurt a lot. I'm sorry, guys. Also, I think I have a high pain threshold, which on very rare occasions, comes in handy.
4. Speaking of pain thresholds... I once fell down a mountain side and landed in big jagged rocks, knocking myself unconscious, in the Rocky Mountains. I had to be rescued by my friends, rangers, and one very unfortunate hiker who also happened to be an EMT. We all had to sleep in the freezing, biting wind on the mountain that night because the rangers didn't find us until it was pitch black outside. Its a long story, worthy of a separate post altogether, but the gist of it is that it took 4 rangers, one helicopter that couldn't land and so flew away instead, a whole team of rangers that were called in to carry me out on a splint and then later called off, and one horse to get me to safety. Its an exciting story, and I'm strangely proud of it - the day Larisa could have died. Needless to say, I am one lucky chica.
5. I'm a sucker for the accents. I mean, a total sucker. Its sad really. In my relatively limited relationship history I've dated two French boys and one Brit, who I am now married to. No, I did not marry him for his accent. But I must admit, that certainly helped ignite the first sparks. :) Its okay. He knows its true. He's comfortable with this fact.
6. I like chocolate, but I hate chocolate cake. I cannot explain this. In fact, any chocolate in the form of bread products, like Oreos, I could really do without. I can eat brownies, but only if they're the really ooey-gooey kind. Too dry? Fo'get about it. Chocolate in any other form? Sign me up!
So maybe some of those weren't so original, but its all I got! For now, at least...
Now here are MY six victims:
Tag! You're it!
Friday, January 25, 2008
Well, there were a few minor exceptions. I couldn't dig up address for 3 friends in time so I STILL have those waiting to be mailed. But as for the others, they all went out in early or mid-December so I'm counting it!
For me, this is quite the accomplishment. Most people on my mailing list are used to getting Christmas and Hanukkah cards for Valentine's day. :)
Monday, January 21, 2008
But then Glenn scored his first goal ever. And my husband scored again! Go, baby, go!
I'm so happy that we've finally WON. But I also had a beautiful opportunity to score. I've finally started to go up into offense positions, and I was in the perfect position last night to knock one in. I stopped the ball right in front of the goal, but it had this weird spin on it, and I was afraid of kicking the crap out of it and hurting the goalie. I'm so annoyed with myself. I could have just dinked it in if I had moved a bit faster. Oh well. Next time!