Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Holiday Projects

My oh, so exciting, list!

1. Finish the t-shirt quilt I started for C last holiday season...I just need to put the back on and then "quilt" it. I think I will try to do this in the mornings when I am up and he is still sleeping so it will be a surprise.
2. Finish the blanket that I am making for Craig's mom for xmas...it is about 1/4 of the way so I have some time. Might work on that this weekend.
3. Clean out my clothes and for goodness sake, get rid of all those sweaters that have 1,000 picks on them that I will not wear because of it or the ones that have shrunk or the pants my big butt will no longer fit into.
4. Go through all the pictures from my last 2 (maybe 3) years' worth of vacations. I need to sort through them all and do something with them..that will probably lead to a project I have wanted to do for a while which is to make a book for each year. Hmmm.
5. Make a CD for poor Morgan of the pictures from Chicago from 2009 that I thought I already made her but obviously didn't. Sad.
6. Clean out my pantries. While looking to make sure I had all the ingredients that I needed for this Thanksgiving I noticed that I had brown sugar, only it was in brick form...not the kind where you can break it back out but it was actually almost melted together.
7. Just a general cleaning of my two rooms...they are a mess!

Now off to make some pumpkin pancakes and wake up C...yes, he is still sleeping at 11am...I have been up for 3.5hrs...I don't know how he does it!

Monday, November 22, 2010

Update and New Blog

Well, no secret that I am horrible at keeping up this blog lately. I am not sure why...not like I was writing super exciting stuff before but somehow I just don't see to have much time for it. Here are a few tidbits.

--training for another half marathon. It is in Phoenix in January and I am going to visit my friend Rachel (some of you might remember her, ,she interned with me at Deloitte and was from New Orleans). She lives in Phoenix now and though we have had a couple dinners when I was in New Orleans for work, it will be nice to spend a few days with her.

--Work has finally settled down. I think that I have told most of you about it but long story short, they were re-organizing and I wasn't sure what they were doing with my job. They announced last Friday that they were done with Home Office (YAY). No raises this year but at least I have a job. There was also a possible opening in the Ohio market but it looks like that might be filled with the other home office employee who lives in this market. I like my job so I am fine with it, but it would have been a good step up.

--we are staying here for Thanksgiving and I am thankful that I get to just relax that day and cook all day.

--We are going to Atlanta for xmas but due to the fact that we are sleeping on a bed on the floor, only have four channels on the TV and a lot of projects here, we are probably not going to be there that long.

Other than that, I am going to make a list of all the projects that I have not completed this year and try to get them all done over the holidays (Thanksgiving and Christmas). I will have to make a list of those but I will save that for another post.

Finally, I have started a new blog. I have really enjoyed making hats this year. I am super sad that the photography business hasn't taken off here and I feel like I have tried just about everything I can think of. I guess I will just be patient. In the meantime, I have been able to crochet and knit more and I really like it so I am going to try to make a hat a day (or at least post one per day even if I make 2 one day and none the other days). You can find my new blog HERE and I would love for you to add it to your google reader :-) I am still trying to find a format that works. It is sort of hard until you get a few posts in there.

That is about it...not too much going on but I have a feeling that with all the free time over the holidays I will have more time to post :-)

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Our Weekend with Ariyana

I am sure you guys got your fill on fb, but just in case, here is a recap and some pics.

I started to get really nervous about the visit because my sister said that Ariyana was going through a really whiney phase. I wasn't really sure what to expect. She was definitely more whiney than in the past but she was good overall. The toughest part about the weekend was that she is going through this phase where half the time she wants to be the baby (I think because Maddox gets a lot of attention at home) and the other half of the time she literally pitches a fit if you try to do something for her. It can be the same thing though both times so it is hard to know when it will strike. I think that this was hardest on Craig because he liked to show her things and sometimes he would do too much and she would get mad. The other tough part was the sheer number of kid videos we watched...Cars - 5 times, Princess and the Frog - 3 times, Monsters, Inc -3 times, Bug's Life - 1 time. I normally would not allow a child to watch that much TV but we had 0 toys for her here. We had played on taking her to the toy store to get her a bday present but then it never happened.

At the end of the weekend and after I got home last night, I asked Craig if we could still have kids after spending a weekend with her and he said yes so I count that as a win :-) She also told her parents that she had a lot of fun :-) It was hard to tell at times because I felt like I had to stop her from doing a lot of things just so she wouldn't go home with a gash in her head.

Anyway, here is the weekend in pics (when I could get the camera out).Getting ready to leave her house :-) We had to make one stop on the way to the airport for her to potty but other than that it was smooth sailing with no traffic (in the HOV lane).

On the "train" from the rental car return place. I think she was more excited about this train and the train the airport than she was about the plane.
Watching the planes come in...she was very excited by them backing out and taking off and woulc announce which ones were "big" ones and which ones looked like ours.
On the plane.
She looks so tiny in the seat!
Silly girl!
She insisted that I hold her hand once the plane started moving....so sweet.
Eating her gummies after we took off because she was such a good girl in the airport.
I had promised her cookies on the plane but they didn't give them out on our flight...uh oh. The flight attendant for first class heard me explain that we would get some when we landed and she said she had some in first class. She came back with one of those airsick bags with water, an apple, a banana, cookies, and a twix in it. She even put the napkin like tissue paper. It was super sweet of her and what did Ariyana eat? The apple and banana :-)
Playing with the seatbelt, which I told her not to do...and sure enough, yesterday on the way home she smashed her finger in it...poor thing. When she did it I couldn't resist saying "didn't I tell you that would happen" and she said "yes, but it hurts".
At the children's discovery museum...SO MUCH BETTER than Atlanta. Unfortunately she wasn't intested in everything because she hadn't had a nap but then she asked to go back the next day so I guess she had fun...I will never figure kids out.
After being inside on Saturday because it was so cold, I really wanted to go outside on Sunday...we decided to do some yardwork...I figured that she would play in the leaves (which she did) but then she wanted to help...I promise we were not putting her to work. It was funny because all she did was spread them around. Luckily after a little while she wanted to go with Craig to dump them in the woods and I could rake.
After nap time we went to a playground nearby. She had been asking to swing since we got in the car in GA so I figured it was another good activity for outside. This is a weird contraption that picks up sand and dumps it. I should have taken video as she bossed C around. It was hilarious!
Again, little miss independent wanted to "do it herself" and she wanted to pull the suitcase. There wasn't that much in there so it wasn't that heavy but I think that this picture is hilarious...she just looks beat down.
And finally, stickers are stickers, no matter what they say and these helped to entertain her for a while as we waited on Grandma to come get her at the airport.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Rental Car Keys

I know that most of you saw the posts on FB about my key fiasco but I wanted to tell you the whole story.

Often when we go on vacation we go to the middle of nowhere to parks during the day and last Friday was no exception. We went to Rialto Beach (among other places but this is where the action went down). It is in Olympic National Park...about 60miles from Port Angeles and about 12 miles from Forks (for all you Twilight fans, those towns both suck...at least in the non peak season). Anyway, we are at Rialto Beach, it starts to rain so we go to the car to wait it out, then it stops so Craig goes to take some pictures while I make us lunch. We eat lunch and are talking about whether we are going to go see a waterfall (C's pick) or to a winery (my pick). He decides we need to see the beach at Rialto over where you can get down to the water. I am not sure how familiar you guys are with the beaches on the coast but they are the cliff kind...no sand, just lots (and I mean LOTS) of trees that have been washed up on shore and rocks as the "sand". You have to climb over the trees to get to the water. Craig was down on the beach walking around and acting like a kid but I was cold so I was up on the bank, past the trees. He kept asking me to come down but I really didn't want to...finally I felt bad and went down. He was walking toward the waves and showing me how the water didn't come up high (on this beach you can't just run back in the sand because the trees are in the way so I didn't want the water to get me all wet). We walk down, first wave stops about 2ft from us....then he says the famous words "we didn't challenge it enough" so he pulls me closer to the raging waves. Yeah, so a HUGE one comes and 12 inches of water are rushing toward us...and we are backpedalling and I fall IN THE WATER! ASS SOAKED, PANTS SOAKED, MELISSA PISSED. I was so mad because it was exactly what I didn't want to happen...it was also extremely scary because the waves are really powerful and you can't run on the rocks and there are trees piled 6ft high that you can smash into so I was also freaked out a bit. When the wave went back Craig was calming me down and I was still mad about being wet (we do have a picture). Finally he said to go to the car and turn on the heat. I reach in my jacket pocket to get the keys and realize they are not there. AWESOME. Now what? We are literally in the middle of nowhere, no cell service, 3 miles to the ranger station (and what would they do) and 12 miles to the nearest town. At first I was thinking that there was no way I lost them. We looked EVERYWHERE. I am panicking. I found a girl and her dad that were leaving the area and asked if they had a phone that worked (to call Hertz) and they said that they didn't but that the would go to the Ranger station and call them. Thanks! They didn't offer to have me ride with. After about 10 mins they came back and said they talked to the ranger and he could send someone out in about an hour. She also said that he gave her the name of a tow truck company and she could call that. I thanked her and asked her to call and she left. Everything of ours was locked in the car...camera gear (thousands of dollars worth), purse, phones, everything. Finally C noticed that the driver's window was cracked (an annoying thing he does that usually drives me crazy because it sends a cold chill to my neck, but I will never complain again) and he unlocked the car (which set off the alarm which we couldn't turn off ...just in case you are wondering, they only go off for about 2-3 mins and then it stops). At least we got our stuff out.

Next a Twilight Tour bus pulled up...I thought that maybe someone would have a phone on there that worked but no luck. The driver lived in Forks and said he would take us back there and that there were 3 tow truck companies in town and we could call. Problem was that it had been 25 mins since the last tow truck was called, if they were called. So, we are trying to decide whether we should split up and how to figure out what company was called to see if they were coming or what. The bus was loading up when the tow truck showed up and we were able to get it towed. We had to go toward the town and get gas, switch drivers and then head to Port Angeles, at least there we had a hotel and clothes (I am still soaked and we are working on about 2 hrs now). On the way I call hertz and see what they can do...basically we have to have the car towed to the Seattle airport and then they can tow us another car out (or we can ride in with the two truck driver (2.5hrs) and get a car). Hmm, those didn't seem like options...thanks anyway. So, I called the only car rental place I saw in town...budget. Yuck. whatever, they had a car and said we had to pay a $150 (plus the $150 to rent the car) to drop it off in Seattle. When we get to the hotel in Port Angeles, the tow truck cost $586...yep, not a typo. Then, when I called Hertz from the hotel they said it would be another $402 to tow the car to Seattle and $200 to replace the key. So, in case you didn't keep up...$586+$300+402+200+$1,486 and we were right back where we started the day except the new rental car completely sucked and didn't have power anything. I was so mad. I can think of a hell of a lot of things I would rather spend $1400 on. It really bothered me to "waste" that money. C pointed out that we were really in a bad spot and we were lucky to be safe with relatively little trouble (4hrs total). I know he is right but you guys know how I am about saving money and it just killed me to have to shell out almost $1K for two tow trucks. Needless to say, we will be joining AAA asap...then it would have only been $250 for the tows (plus you get hotel discounts and stuff and we always stay at hotels in the middle of nowhere which are the ones that give the AAA discounts).

So, that is the whole story. When we got back to the hotel and I was a little calmer (and warmer, it took a shower and several hours), Craig gave me a big hug and said that he was glad that I wasn't upset that it was all his fault. He said he thought I was going to be mad at him because he made me go down to the water. I couldn't be mad though...it wasn't really his fault...he was just trying to be playful and the keys were in my pocket and it was an accident. Who would have ever thought that they would fall out??? The only thing I can figure out is that I had my hand in my pocket (since it was cold) and when I was falling I pulled it out to brace myself and they came out too. The whole thing sucked but hopefully we have had our share of bad luck for a while (C also got a speeding ticket :-() I am sort of jaded by being out in the middle of nowhere though so I am sort of hoping for a more city oriented trip next time...

Monday, September 20, 2010

Heavyweight!

I feel like I need to blog a little more. My facebook status updates seem to be all about running, biking or traveling. That is mostly what I do so I guess it makes sense but it seems sort of sad to me.

In other news, it is starting to get really cool at nights in Dayton. I love the weather right now and I look forward to the next month of the leaves changing and cool nights but a part of me really dreads the cold that I know is just around the corner. We have had a really dry summer...it really hasn't rained at all (it did back in the spring every time I was going to run a 5k) and it has been sort of nice (minus the whole drought side effects). I am really hoping that will carry over into winter and we will have less snow this year. I wouldn't mind a little but I don't want to set any records. UGH.

I think that I am finally settling in here in Dayton...I know that seems silly when I have lived here for almost a year and a half but I think that it takes a good two years to really feel like it isn't just a temporary thing. I at least have made a couple friends now that I can hang out with. That makes a huge difference. I think that the travel is starting to get old again. Actually, I like the travel but I miss being home. It is very hard to have both. I think that I will be at home for most of Oct and Nov so that should be nice but you never know. There are a ton of shake ups in my company right now...seems like I post this at least once a year. I don't think that my job is in any danger but they are changing a lot of things and that always makes me nervous. Time will tell!

Not much else going on...I am not THAT sore from the half marathon on Saturday which is good. I think that I will be almost normal tomorrow...just in time to start 30 day shred! I kept saying I was going to do it and tomorrow is the day...

Sort of random, I have discovered this new thing that Ali told me about. Did you know that a lot of races (or at least the ones here) have heavyweight divisions? If you are over 150lbs (160lbs for some) then you can compete in the heavyweight race. I don't know why I think that this is funny but it is. I mean 150 is not exactly heavyweight depending on your height and/or your muscle build. As a matter of a fact, I think that might be the top healthy weight for my height (depending on what chart you look at anyway). And, do you have to weigh in at the race or something to qualify? I am not sure but I think it is funny since you could still run a perfectly good race at those weights.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Half Marathon Recap

Leslie and I before the race. Leslie went to Ohio State and is a DG. I met her through the DG alum group here. I only found out she was running the race two weeks ago...too bad because we could have trained together since we have the same pace. We ran the whole race together :-).

Ali and I before the race, Ali is my normal partner in crime here in Dayton. She plays A LOT of soccer and plays in the same league as Craig on Thursdays. Leslie and I after the game (and after the 30 min search for the car...notice my shoes are already off and the flip flops are on!)
Ali and I after the race...she said we had to bite our medals because she "sees them do it all the time on the Olympics" HA!


I did it, I survived! I would lying if I said that I wasn't at least a little disappointed at my time. I really wanted to average out 11min miles and my max that I wanted to complete it in was 2:30. My time was 2:35 :-( There were 2247 women that finished and I was #1202, not too bad but I am definitely looking forward to improving my time. I think this will be a race that I do every year. It was so well organized and there were a lot of people there (there was also a 10k and a full marathon) that were doing the race. No real spectators though because we were on an army base...secret stuff.

I learned a few things and have a few funny stories. First I learned that I never should have bought the hype of how they "changed the course from the hilly version in the past and now it was fast and flat". I call total BS on that one. We had about 3-5 major hills! By major hills, I mean that one of them was a freeway off ramp that went up and over another road and lasted for .5miles (straight up). The rest of the course was gradual ups and downs...pretty much the opposite of fast and flat. Don't get me wrong, it was a great course and had I actually trained with hills it would have been awesome but when I read fast and flat that means I trained on our bike path (which is fast and flat). Hmmm. The hills got me. I will not let them win next year. I live in an extremely hilly neighborhood here, just didn't think I needed to run in it during training. Now I know better. Second, blisters SUCK!! I haven't really had them before during an actual race (had a couple during training but nothing that really hurt during the running). I think that the issue here is that you train on sidewalks or running paths but then when you run the race, you run on the road. Not sure how many of you have fun races, or even noticed the structure of roads, but they are like humps in the middle with slopes on the side (for rain and oil to drain off of them). It isn't something you really notice when you are driving but when you are pounding the pavement for 2.5hrs, you notice. I didn't have the hip problems that Leslie and Ali had but I think that having my foot be slightly slanted the whole time is the cause of the blister (I had them on both feet right where my big toe attaches to my foot, weird place so it wasn't my shoes rubbing). So, my advice if you are going to train for a big run is to find a road you can run on to practice that and the way it moves your foot differently than flat ground. I have strange muscles that are sore and I think it is the ones that have to stabilize your foot on uneven ground. Third, I learned not to lay in grass after the race. I had no idea this would ever be an issue. I have never had a problem with grass but the grass here is different and technically I am allergic. We stopped running and went to find Ali (she finished 15 mins ahead of us) and she was sitting in the grass. We got water and gatorade and joined her. About 5 mins later my legs started itching. I thought it was just my eczema because it gets irritated when I get hot so I scratched it. By the time we got up 10 mins later my entire legs itched and I had red bumps spreading everywhere. Then they were not just on my legs but they were on my arms and everywhere...gross. I didn't think much of it and we got our beer and then headed back to the car. By the time I got home, went to get food and then got home again, I couldn't stand the itch anymore. I took a shower and applied hydrocortozone but they were there all day! Today they are a little better, not as puffy and don't itch. How annoying though...who wants a rash after running 13 miles?? Not this gal.

So, funny stories. We luckily planned ahead and didn't pull our normal "let's just get there 10 mins before deal" and left early. It took us 30 mins to go 2 miles because so many people were trying to get into the base. When we parked it was all in this nice orderly fashion and on the grass (this is important later) and then we took our before pictures, got everything we needed and headed for a port a potty. We had to pee. We stood in line for the port a potty for about 30 mins...yuck, and we missed the start of the race. We didn't really care since they start the time when your chip crosses the start line but after we got out of the bathroom line and headed to the start it was a literally 10 min walk...oops. We didn't start until 8:42 HA! We thought it might be good because we wouldn't have to deal with the crowds...um, not so much. We didn't have to deal with the jockeying at the beginning but we did have to pass almost all 1000 of those people that we finished before. Most of them walkers in groups that spread all the way across the road. UGH. So much wasted energy!! I guess that isn't that funny except that we missed the beginning of the race. The second funny story is that after everything we limp to the car and then we can't find it. Remember how I said we parked all orderly? Well, apparently 5 million cars showed up after us and we weren't parked where we thought. It was really sad but if you had ever been to this base you would understand. We were not the only people who couldn't find our car...there were a ton of people out there just turning in circles. We didn't remember how far we had walked and since everything is grass, it is hard to tell what area you were in. I remembered that we went over some gravel but there were like 4 different places where you could go over gravel. Then there were some cars parked orderly but they were too close for where we parked so we went somewhere else and the cars were all over the place..ugh. FINALLY Leslie screams that she found the car and we got in it to go home. This was after 30mins (literally) of us walking around the grass parking area. I think we probably ended up doing close to 17 miles yesterday with all the walking to the start line, from the start line and in the parking lot.

All in all, it was a really fun experience. Even though my time was not what I wanted it to be, I felt pretty good doing it and I think that I can improve upon my time. If anyone else wants to try a half, then come on up...we can make a weekend of it :-) Sept 17, 2011.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Vegas BABY!

I am in Vegas...I am not sure I am a fan. I know that it is so not cool to say how you are not a fan of Vegas, but let me explain. I have been here 4 times.

1. Came with Leigh Anne and her family when I was 22...AWESOME time. Played craps for hours, drank and wow $900 on a slot machine.
2. Came for 3 weeks straight for work in January of 2006 and was flying back and forth and investigating a fraud...got asked out every night by this sketchy guy (not sketchy looking but like too much all over me guy) about every night. Was working my butt off and was tired every night (and it is cold here in Jan).
3. Craig and I were here for a night on one of our long trips...we got in at noon, had a "disagreement", made up and then walked 5 miles on the strip which ended with me crying because I was so tired and my feet hurt and we tried to take a cut through to get to our hotel (we went on to have an awesome vacation but that day was rough, he is not a good flyer).

Now I am back. I came in on Monday (middle seat on a 4hr flight) and I am here with my whole group (they came in last night). Let's see how the events have gone so far. Monday night I went out with a bunch of Mercedes dealers and auction people...dinner was good, but it was 4 courses and took 4hrs. I checked into my hotel room at 1:30am EST after getting up at 5:30am. Last night my other people came in and I was going to pick them up at the airport. Go to dinner with the same group...dealer hitting on me big time...wants to leave with me to get my girls so he can "make sure I will come to the after party". I tell another girl I work with and we leave to go to the bathroom and she walks me out. I pick up my girls...one is drunk (she is obnoxious when not drunk, good worker but our personalities are night and day) and they want to go out. I have no desire. I am trying to make sure I get enough sleep and water for my half marathon on Saturday...the 4hr dehydrating plane ride home will be bad enough in my middle seat again. We got on the list for Ghost Bar (if you watched Real World Las Vegas, is it the bar with the open deck) and we go...we order one round of drinks and it was $50 for 5 drinks...$9 for a Corona. UGH. We are not supposed to just have alcohol on our receipts we turn in and my T&E goes straight to the top...not good. I realized that it is no fun when you are the boss and have to follow the rules. They are all used to throwing down because the last time they went on these types of trips was when the money was flowing like water...no more. I just hate it. I hate feeling like the uptight person. Plus, all the girls at that club were half naked and had 6 inch heels...ugh. So, we will see what tonight brings. The one girl wants to walk the strip and just drink as we walk, the other girl wants to go clubbing (she is the only single one) and I think that the walking sounds good to me. I think that I just don't enjoy the club scene that much anymore anyway and certainly not with work people. We will see.

In other news, wish me luck on Saturday! I ran 10 miles last Friday and felt good...so good that I am actually looking forward to the half on Saturday...I think that I am going to sign up for another one in October. I might be insane but I feel like it keeps me exercising...

Friday, September 3, 2010

9 Miles

I ran 9 miles today. well, I ran all but about 5 mins of 9 miles. Those minutes were spent walking up a hill. I don't really see the point in killing myself to run up a hill at a pace that turns out to be slower than if I just walk and plus, it gives me a nice break. I heard on Q100 in Atlanta the other day a list of the things you shouldn't post about on FB. Exercising was one of them, now I have this suspicion that I am one of those annoying posters (since I do post about running and biking). Then again, also on the list were any posts about potty training your kids, anyone who ONLY posts about their kids, and a whole slew of other things that my "friends" on FB do. Thing is, I don't really mind most of it...I mean, that IS what they are doing and isn't that the point. Take exercise and traveling out of my posts and you will not hear much from me.

Anyway, the run felt good. I was really dreading it but I have skipped my long runs the last two weekends. Once because I had flown 4 times in 5 days (separate flights, not connections) and my body was just tired, the other because I didn't think it was a good idea to run 9 miles before biking 50. I hope that I feel as good at the actual race as I did today. Ali will still leave me in the dust but at least I will finish and feel good doing it :)

I am so ready for college football and so sad that I have to wait until Monday to see our game. We have the college gameplan thingy but since we are going to WI this weekend, I will have to wait until we get back. I am pretty sure they will not have it on there :=) Next weekend I plan to spend the whole weekend just crafting and watching football. If anyone is looking for a craft retreat and wants to head up 75 about 500 miles, come join me :-)

Friday, August 27, 2010

Grounded

I didn't have to travel this week and after flying on 4 of the 5 business days last week and only having one flight on time, I am so glad. I feel like I have been home forever and it is so nice. I think that Craig was starting to feel like I didn't live here anymore. He definitely enjoyed the home cooked meals all week :-)

I did a longer run on Tuesday (only 5 miles) and I felt pretty good (good thing since the half marathon is only 3 weeks away). I think that I will be ok :-) I did walk twice but I don't really get into the whole "I have to run every second of it" thing. I took two walk breaks that might have lasted 2 mins each and the rest of the time I ran at my normal pace. Had I not taken those breaks then I would have slowed down a lot I think. We will see in a few weeks. Ali and I decided that we needed to be cute to run the half...you always feel better when you are cute, right? So, I ordered a run running skirt and black tank (in honor of the UGA game that day). I am working on fashioning a headband with some UGA material. HA! Sadly when my skirt came in, it didn't have the little spandex shorts attached to it like 99% of running skirts so I am not sure if I am going to get to wear that one. I have some little shorts that fit under it but I haven't worn them yet. I did order another red skirt that does have shorts but it is a lighter, almost pinker red (it reminds me of those "red" pants that someone's husband had at the UGA games that we used to call pink---was that Judd?) anyway, we will see. I am in love with running skirts because it is the best of both worlds...spandex that stays in place but a cute skirt to keep my spandexed booty from hanging out all over the place :-)

Other than that, I have a 5 mile bike ride this Sunday with C. I am looking forward to it and dreading it all at the same time. I know I will be so proud of myself when I am done (40 miles is the most I have done at a time) but I know it will be challenging along the way (especially if there are any hills). To put it all in perspective for you guys, we usually average about 14miles per hour...that means about 3.5hrs in the saddle....YIKES!!

You would think with all the running and biking and stuff that the pounds would just be melting off, but not so much. I have managed to lose a few (and someone actually noticed yesterday at work) but for those of you I am seeing on Tuesday, don't expect much :-)

The next few weeks I will also get to be in town a lot. I actually only have one trip between now and Sept 13th and that is to Atlanta for a couple days next week. Craig and I are going to Milwaukee for Labor day and I am excited about that but otherwise, I will actually get to spend time at home and cook my own dinner :-)

Sunday, August 8, 2010

40 miles!

i am trying to post more even though I don't have that much to say sometimes :-)

Yesterday I was having one of those days...you know the days where you are just antsy (ok, if you have kids, think to BEFORE you had them) and you want to do something but nothing really sounds good? That was me yesterday. When I have weeks that I am good about exercising I have a really hard time taking a day off. That was yesterday. I ran 7 miles on Friday (really ran/walked 7 miles and then walked another mile home) and then I knew that today I was going to ride my bike for a long distance so I knew I NEEDED to relax yesterday but it was just so pretty outside that I wanted to do something outside. Oh well, I ended up making some treats for Craig's work peeps, synced up my Nike +, tried to come up with some playlists (still working on that) and did other little things that I have needed to do.

My new hobby (well, old hobby but it has been in full force lately) is knitting and crocheting little hats. I have about 50 of them made now because it is the one thing that you can take anywhere and do while taking off or landing on the plane (when I am not sleeping). Most of them have been made on planes, in airports or while I am just watching tv. I need to find a creative way to get them photographed. We are going to do a couple craft shows in the fall but a lot of people asked last year if we had an etsy account (which we do) so I need to get some pictures of them up there. I don't like just taking pictures of them flat because they don't look as cute. I don't have a kid to put any on so I am not sure what I am going to do....if anyone has any ideas, let me know :-)

Today we did 40 miles on our bikes...that is a really long way and to give you guys an idea, it took us 2:45 of just ride time to do it (we didn't count the quick break on a bench for a granola bar or the quick stop to get gatorade). I am proud of myself because that is a long ways to ride on a bike. I am hoping that by next year sometime I can do a century (100 miles) but if I do the math, that is over 6hr in the saddle. Not sure my booty can handle that. You would think by looking at it that there was a lot of padding but somehow it doesn't seem to be the case.

Hope everyone had a great weekend!

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Time

Wow, how times change (and I haven't even had a kid yet). I haven't posted in 3 weeks. The even sadder part is that I am not sure I could tell you what has happened in the last 3 weeks. Work has been pretty good and considering this is my busy time every quarter, things have started to slow down. I am trying not to jinx myself too much because I know it can all come back to me.

Last Thursday I went to Myrtle Beach to meet up with the fam. We have been going there for as long as I can remember and usually my grandma and aunts and uncles go too. I stayed with Alyson, Zach, the kids and my mom and Richard. Quite a condo full. I loved spending time with everyone and this is going to sound sort of nuts but I just really like spending time with Ariyana. I feel like we have a special little bond (not that I will not love my other nieces and nephews just as much). When I first got there she came right to me and wanted me to hold her until dinner time...in the mornings when she got up she would come and snuggle with me (ok, it was more like her taunting me with her stuffed animals) on my air mattress. I just can't get enough of that kid. She will sit completely still for me while I do her hair or while I put sunscreen on her and she missed me when she woke up on Sunday and realized I was gone. She knows I live in "hio" and she wants to visit me so badly. She told me this past weekend that she wasn't big enough to go on an airplane. She had to grow a little more and be taller. My sister said they told her that one time when they dropped me at the airport and she wanted to come with me. Little does she know that we are planning to do just that. I have decided that I am going to bring her to Ohio for a weekend. Just her. I can't wait. I am not sure when we are going to do it. The fall is getting pretty packed for Craig and I and then, well, winter sucks here so I am scared it will have to be in the spring but I really don't want to wait that long. My plan is to just work in Atlanta during the week, then fly up with her for the weekend and then back to Atlanta with her and work there that week too. Since I have all my stuff in Atlanta, I would really only need to bring all her stuff back and forth. I asked Craig if he would be cool with it and he said yes (he also said he didn't think that it would be a hard thing to have her for a whole weekend. I think he has forgotten how much energy she has).

Maddox is another saint baby and my sister is extremely lucky (and thank goodness my fear of all boy babies being difficult is going away....really it was only Terah and Drena's boys, but it has stuck with me). The only time I heard that baby cry in 3 days was when he was hungry and even then my sister got to him most of the time before he cried. She has him on a pretty tight schedule and it seems to work. I didn't even hear him cry at night except one night and that was because my sister had to change him. He is such a cute little thing and he has the most gorgeous blue eyes ever!! He is 3 months old and point and shoot cameras suck so he still makes those funny baby faces whenever I tried to get a picture of him.

Other than that, Craig and I are working on our fall vacation and I have actually been in town this week (which means normal work hours and trying to exercise). I am still training for the half marathon but it doesn't really feel like I am getting any better.....guess we will see. It is only 6 weeks away so I hope I can improve a bit. I might sign up for the one in Atlanta in March if this one goes well.

Friday, July 9, 2010

Coping

I think that I am FINALLY coming out of this horrible work/stress problem that I have been having. I returned to my good old 'sands and rocks' way of planning and I am happy to report that I got all but one thing done this week that was on my list this week! That is WAY better than past weeks and I think that I can finally see light at the end of the tunnel.

I have learned to delegate....especially items that are time consuming but don't add a lot to my learning process (sort of hard to explain but there are a lot of tedious things that will have to be done or entered into a spreadsheet before I can do the problem-solving part). This has helped keep my employees busy and has freed up some of my time.

I have learned to be a little more of a boss and not so much of a friend. It sucks and it isn't the way I want to operate but with a couple of my employees, it is the way it has to be. For the others, we are still more friendly but they already understand that just because I am their boss, and am nice, doesn't mean that they don't have to do work. If only everyone would get that. I hate that other people's personalities are causing me to change my management style but it is what it is.

I have decided that I am going to try not to travel 5 days a week. Most auctions close early on Friday so I am going to start leaving on Thursdays after work. I think that this will help because it will make my out of town time each week a 4:3 ration instead of 5:2. I don't feel like I will lose any work time this way and it will also save the company money. Plus, Craig plays soccer on Thursdays so it won't matter that I will get home later.

The diet seems to be going pretty well. I feel pretty good but not sure that it has really made me lose weight. Ugh. I am going to stick with it though....even if I don't lose weight, I will at least be healthy :-)

So, anyway, that is what I have been up to....I didn't promise it would be an exciting post but at least I don't feel half crazy now :-)

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Made it?

T (from work) tells me that stress is the first sign of success. If that is true then I am pretty darn successful. K (from work) tells me what doesn't kill me makes me stronger (to which I replied "is there a guarantee it won't kill me" and he said "no"). yeah, so that is how my week has gone.

The promo is a bit challenging. In every meaning of the word but I made it. I don't like to elaborate too much on my blog about work so I will leave it at the fact that I worked all day Tuesday, then had a work dinner until 10pm, back at work at 8 on Wednesday and another work dinner until 10pm and then more meetings today. I am absolutely exhausted and I don't even have a cute kid to look at as the reward. Sigh....

Let's focus on the positive.

Wonderful time at girls' weekend though I felt a little cranky the first day as the work stuff was leaving my brain (sorry girls). Had drinks with a friend Monday night that I hadn't seen since December. Got to see my adorable niece and nephew on Sunday. I did get eaten alive by mosquitoes but it was worth it. Ariyana was hilarious. She now "breast feeds" her babies/stuffed animals after seeing my sister do it. The last time was in the middle of Kohl's when she decided to pull up her shirt and feed Otter. She also has decided that she needs to "punk" (pump) while in the bathtub. Zach said he could see her little mind working as she took one of the toys that suctions to the wall on the tub and stuck it up to her chest. Then another. Then she informed him that she was "punking". While he was telling the story she heard him and said "No now Daddy, only in the bathtub". Hilarious in my eyes.

That cute little thing asked me if she could come in my silver car (which she hasn't been in since December) to "hio" (Ohio) with me. It was so sad to tell her not right now. She said "maybe?" like it might change my mind....sad. I love that little girl! After she went to bed I held Maddox for an hour or two straight, my sister said he had his best night of sleep ever that night. Maybe I have a magic touch. It was so nice to see my mom too and it was totally worth getting home at midnight :-)

Monday, June 21, 2010

Where's the beef?

Well, apparently there is a new (or at least new to me) certification of beef. I know you guys think that I have a one way ticket to the cukoo's nest but that is ok. A year ago I would have felt the same way so just humor me.

The weight gain on the road has been a little out of control in the last year or so. It started before my decision to not eat any meat that wasn't grass-fed/naturally raised but it certainly probably didn't help to replace meat on the road with carbs. On the flip side, not being sick for going on 6 months now is pretty much a record for me, especially considering the number of planes I get on. Long story short....I feel disgusting and I have to get the weight off. I feel like a low carb deal is the best way to go so I have decided to be as relaxed as I can be on the road with the whole meat deal until I can get some weight off. My no meat eating (and this is just on the road, not at home) didn't cause me to gain any extra weight but it didn't help me lose either. Well, tonight when looking for a place to eat in Salt Lake City I found a steakhouse that was nearby that bragged about Angus Certified Beef Natural....well, from the reading I have done, I have learned that "natural" doesn't always mean what you want it to me so I looked it up. Turns out that they do actually have standards for this...no hormones/antibiotics, vegetarian fed (though this can still mean corn, but corn will make cows sick which is why they have to have antibiotics so I would have to reason that it is a lot less corn). You can even trace your cow to birth (not that I would ever do that). I had some natural filet mignon tonight. I will not say it was as good as the steak that Drena and I drooled over last week but it was pretty darn good...better than most chain places like Ruth's Chris and stuff. Here is a link so you can read it yourself (and I am sure you all can't wait :-))

I also just finished reading the South Beach Recharged book on the plane today (after my 3hr nap) and I have to say that it aligns with my thoughts on food (minus the whole natural part but I can work with that because I can just find the meat they say to eat in the natural world)....now I just have to put it into practice. I am going to start after girl's weekend (no alcohol and I don't want to miss out on the box of wine). I feel good about it because I feel like it doesn't teach you just to eat low fat (which can be worse for you processed-food-wise). I hope I can do it and I think that if I have a talk with Craig he will be supportive. He knows how awful I have felt about the weight lately and I think that he wants me to do whatever will help me feel better.

Saturday, June 19, 2010

5 days.....

not that I am counting down or anything but I can't wait until next weekend. I have been so busy lately and I just feel like doing nothing. I know there will be a lot of that next weekend :-)

Since I moved I have (finally) made friends but it still isn't like my good ole Atlanta girls. Drena and I were talking last week and she commented on how I didn't really blog that much anymore. I told her that I felt sort of disconnected from everyone and like I didn't really have much to blog about. I do feel a little disconnected (just in a different stage in life so I don't have as much in common with my friends right now, not necessarily a bad thing) and it sort of got me to thinking. I am a little disconnected from my family too. I have barely talked to my sisters lately or my mom. This is sort of a long stretch for me to not talk to them or see them and it certainly isn't on purpose, I just don't really feel like I have much to contribute. My sister has a new baby, my other sister is going to be trying soon, and um, yeah, I am still here in Ohio. Do you ever feel that way? I mean, yes, I got a promotion and yes, it is HARD, and I am stressed (and sorry to keep mentioning it but it is what CONSUMES my time lately), but that is not nearly as fun to hear about as cute babies.

I think that I am looking forward to the weekend too because I love sitting around with my girls and chatting and gossiping and just talking about life. There is something so comforting in talking in person and not over email or blog or whatever. Some things I just don't want to put out in blogger land (not necessarily bad things but just personal things or work things that I don't want anyone to ever find). I miss having someone who is really close to me (that is a girl) that I can talk to about whatever, even if I am just being stupid about something and need to be calmed down.

Anyway, I can't wait. I am really looking forward to it....trying to pick the yarn I will bring for all the crafting time Drena and I will have as we all sit around and chat. Secretly hoping Erin will bring a box of wine (or we can pick one up on the way). I get to see Carrie all cute and preggo and see Molly (who probably could use some drinking and talking herself) and Meghan (who I don't think that I have seen in over a year). I am sad that the other people couldn't come and I will miss them (especially Rachel who I can't easily see when I want) but I am thankful for the ones who can.

See you gals soon!

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Better Blogger

I am going to try to be a better blogger. I have certainly been a slacker lately but I just haven't felt like there was a ton to report that would interest anyone. I mean new carpet is extremely exciting and all, but some excitement you have to keep to yourself.

So, I guess the biggest bit of news we have had lately is not really great news but I don't think that it is really a secret either....Craig got diagnosed with cutaneous lupus. Fun stuff. He had this rash that he would get about 3 days after being in the sun. We couldn't figure out what it was and we looked up rashes all over the internet. No medicine really helped so it was really bizarre. I finally made him an appointment with a dermatologist thinking that it was just a sun rash....imagine my surprise when I talked to him later that day and he said they did a skin biopsy. They said he either had lupus or he was allergic to the sun. Um, that seems like a big difference. Then a week later he got the results and they said he had lupus. Then it was a question of what kind....he had emailed me the word above which is just the skin kind but then there is also a kind that is all your organs or something so I was worried. Of course they tell you no info on the phone and then getting it out of C was even worse so I only got half of what they did say on the phone. Today he finally went to get the full results and see the doctor. Turns out (thankfully) he only has the skin kind!! That is the best case scenario. The doctor had prescribed him meds the first time which he refused to take so I made him tell the doctor that this time. The doc seemed surprised that the rash cleared up without meds and told him that he only had to take them if he had a flare up (which made him really happy). Since the first visit we have been putting 70 sunscreen (they make 100!!!) on him and he hasn't had anymore problems so I am hoping we have figured out a way to beat this in just 2 weeks :-) He also stays out of the sun during the hot parts and stuff and it seems to work. I am glad that it turned out to be a less serious kind for sure.

So, between that and my thyroid, I think that we just feel old and like we are falling apart. At least neither of those things is due to anything we did or didn't do....at least not to my knowledge. so at least I don't feel like we have done it to ourselves.

Other than that the battle of the bulge continues for me. I still have not lost any of the weight I gained from the thyroid and/or traveling. Most of what I read suggests a low carb diet so I am trying that. It severely conflicts with my no eating meat that isn't organic when on the road. If you cut out carbs and you cut out meat, you eat a lot of lettuce and stay very hungry. I am hoping one day I will figure it out. Until then, I apologize for the girls who might have to see me in a bathing suit....let's just pretend I am 5 months pregnant :-) Then it can be "cute". That is about what it looks like.

The new job is still kicking my butt but I hope that will one day slow down a little. I think that a lot of it is putting the framework in place. I have a lot of personalities that are really different so getting it all together is a challenge but at least it is a good challenge.

I am sad that I haven't seen my nephew in two months but I am hoping to visit him next Sunday when we get home from girls' weekend.

That ends this edition of random thoughts!

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

So much going on lately. I feel busy all the time (the travel doesn't help). I thought it best to do this post in bullets.

--Craig's parents are visiting this weekend. I am a bit nervous about it because they are bringing their dog. I got an email from Craig's mom this morning that their dog was in a fight on Sunday and they didn't want to leave her so his dad was going to stay home with the dog and his mom was going to DRIVE across the country ALONE. I asked Craig if they could bring the dog and we could just keep the cats in the basement for the weekend (it is finished/furnished, has a sliding glass door and it is where their litter box is). The Craig's mom keeps asking if the cats will be secure because their dog was trained to hunt and if one of the cats got out the dog would attack. I was nervous because Chloe has gotten out before but it was when we didn't close the door all the way. Craig assures me we can lock them down there without issue. I am still nervous.

--This promotion has proved to be quite a challenge. I know in a lot of jobs people make fun of the title "manager" and certainly "senior manager" as just being titles. I don't know how it works for other people but I have to actually MANAGE. Our job isn't one of those jobs where you go to work and do the same thing every day and the manager is just there to make sure no one stops coming to work. It is project based and I spend a lot of time allocating projects and answering questions about said projects and smoothing things over. I would say it is 50% of my time. I am hoping it will settle a bit but I am not going to get my hopes up.

-- On Sunday Craig and I participated in a 29 mile bike "tour". A tour is like a race except it isn't a race at all, just a ride. We could start anytime between 7:30 and 9:30 and had to be done with the course by 4pm. We weren't sure how the whole thing worked so we got there around 7:30 to register and stuff. On the way there we drove through the hardest rain I have ever seen in my life!! It was awful and I was doubting that we would be able to even ride but luckily when we got there it was sunny and WINDY. To give you an idea, we were riding at about 15-18 mph out of the wind but whenever we had to go against it we (i) could only go 9 mph....you do the math. I really enjoyed doing the event with him and I think that he was really proud of me for doing so well. That was the first time I had ridden a road bike on the road. We normally ride on a paved trail. I think that we will try to do more of them.

--I am extremely disappointed in the CSA we are doing. CSA stands for Community Supported Agriculture and half the stuff we get comes from other countries (and rots fast). I don't feel like I am supporting the community if my money is not only going out of the community but out of the country. UGH. They also send a lot of weird stuff that we have to look up to even know what it is and the seem to stuff it with leaves (lettuce or the ends of radishes or random greens). I just don't feel like we are having a good experience. I talked to the other couple we share with and they sort of feel the same way. They have an option where you can choose what you get each week so I think we are either going to try to switch to that or switch to the farm that I used to get our eggs from. I am really disappointed.

--Tonight I am going to see Sex and the City 2 with my Dayton girls....feels weird to have a girls' night that doesn't involve Erin, Carrie, Drena, Morgan or Jennifer....my Atlanta girls. I am glad that I have found friends here but I do miss my ATL girls (and all of you in other states too but I didn't get to see you often before either). We decided (by we, I mean them) to dress up for the movie....Carrie style. I am not even sure I should tell you guys what I have on right now and I am not even sure what I will show up to find! It is also Ali's 2 year anniversary of her divorce so we are going out for drinks afterward to celebrate (I know that seems weird but he cheated on her with her best friend (who was also married and whose wedding she was in) and now the two of them are getting married so we are celebrating the fact that she discovered how much of a dbag he was 5 years into marriage instead of 25).

I feel like there is a lot more but I don't know what it is right now. I feel like summer is already slipping away from me! Can't wait for the girls' weekend at the end of June!

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

On the road again....

Well, thank you all for the support (and congrats) after my last post. I am feeling much better these days. I chatted with Craig that night and it seems that we are on the same page with everything and he even said that if there was a job that I just couldn't pass up that he would move to Atlanta. That is good to know. I really don't want it to come to that though....but we will see. I asked my boss about it yesterday morning and he assured me that it was not a problem right now and he didn't foresee it being a problem. I even asked if the other manager said something and he said no. I really can't figure out where the motivation behind the comment was but as long as he is not concerned, I am not going to be either.

I am in Baltimore (well, right outside of it) for a couple days. Not much report. I don't feel that I could possibly be anywhere near a major city but I am assured that it is right up the road. I am tired so I think that I am going to bed pretty early tonight. I have had a lot more energy lately but I also haven't traveled quite as much. June is a tough month for me. Right now I will only be home 6 weekdays for the whole month and Craig's parents will be there for 3 of them. When the 4th of July weekend gets here I am going to be SOOOOOO ready!! At least one of those weekdays will be spent with my girls at the beach :-)

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

I got it!

Well, I had to go to Atlanta today for a meeting (actually I volunteered to go because it is a topic that will affect me and I really wanted to know) and while I was there I was told that I got the Senior Manager job!! YAY! I am very excited. I think that I have a bit of a tough road ahead because the other girl that was up for it is also a manager and I am taking over her group so I will be her new boss. She was in Audit Services before I was and she was at our company before me and she is older so I am sure she feels like she should have gotten the job. My boss even addressed it with me when he told me about it and said that he would help. He would help??? This isn't the first time that he has mentioned it to me (other time was during the interview) so I have a feeling that she has said something to him. Ugh.

The part of the whole job offer that scared me a little bit is he asked me if there was ever a chance that I would move back to Atlanta. I am sure that I looked shocked (I only moved away 14 months ago). I told him that I wasn't sure because I wasn't sure my boyfriend would be up for it (we are cool and can talk personal stuff). He said he knew that might be the case and said the he didn't really feel like it was necessary and it was 2010 and all but not everyone was on the same page. He also said he liked how I came to Atlanta and that I should probably start coming twice a month (good news if anyone wants to hang out) because the face time is good for me. This has been on my mind ever since. I haven't mentioned it to Craig but will talk to him about it tonight. I feel like my head is spinning. I like my life in Ohio. I feel like I have the best of both worlds right now. I live in Ohio with Craig and I love it....we have a nice house in a nice area (best schools around) and we have room and we have no traffic and my garden and .....well, life is just EASY there. I don't feel stressed (other than work sometimes) and I like the seasons (minus winter). I don't know, the more I think about it the more I wonder if I want to move back. We talk all the time about buying a house with more land. I am about 5 seconds away from saying I want to live on a farm. I would say the one thing that would lean me toward yes is being near my family. I do miss that and even though I see them about as much as I did before, I would like my kids to see their grandparents. I don't want to go back to dealing with traffic and paying way more for a house of the same quality and all that though. It stresses me. Amazing how your view changes when you move away. Would I like to be back with all of you, of course! Do I think that Craig would be happy? Not so sure. I think that Atlanta is one of those places you have to get used to (or grow up in or at least grow up in from high school on). The other side is that if I don't say I will move back, does this mean that I am as far as I can go in my career? Maybe. Do I care about that? Maybe not. Craig and I have discussed many times whether I should stay home if we had kids and he likes the idea of it. I kind of do too. I think that by the time we have kids I will feel like I got to do the career thing and I will be ready for the mommy thing. Maybe I will want to consult or work part time or something. So, if I am going to do that then why kill myself now to move up the ranks. I LOVE my job now, despite the fact that I might complain sometimes. I would be happy doing it for a very long time. I make good money, everything else is just icing as far as moving up.

Ok, plane is landing, gotta go....can you tell my head is spinning? Thanks for reading!

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Home Sweet Home

We are back!!! The trip was fun but exhausting! We always do that to ourselves but we have a lot of fun.

I am working on the pictures now and I hope to actually post some on the blog this time (as opposed to leaving them on my hard drive like I normally do).

I still have not heard about the job yet but I am going to Atlanta on Wednesday for a meeting so I am hoping I will hear by then or at least when I am there. We will see.

Hard to tell on the whole thyroid thing right now....I was still a bit tired but we also had really long days. It also says that it takes a couple weeks for the meds to start working so I will be patient. I did manage to eat out the whole time (fast food sometimes because it was the only choice) and didn't gain an ounce so hopefully the metabolism is more normal at least a little.

I will post some more when I get some pics ready :-)

Monday, May 10, 2010

Thanks Erin!

Remember this post in February? Well, sweet Erin called me that night and said that I should probably get the thyroid checked out. I started to notice that there were days when I would get so tired for no reason (enough sleep, not too much sleep, nothing strenuous, etc) and noticed that no matter how healthy I ate, I was still staying around the same weight and the second that I didn't eat perfect I would gain. It was also going to a different place than it used to be instead of just being spread out. I guess what I am saying is that it just didn't feel right for my body. I have always been fine as long as I get 7-8hrs of sleep (and I know some of you would dream of that) and usually if I make a conscience effort to eat healthy I will shed pounds. Didn't really seem to add up. If I go back and really think about it (and I said this a few times on my other blog) the math just didn't add up. So, long story short, I made an appt for the doc. That takes for flipping ever if you are not an established patient but I finally got one for May 3rd. I showed her the blood work with the high thyroid stuff and then she took more blood. She said that if nothing changed we would just watch it (apparently I am borderline) and if it got worse we would start meds. Not thrilled about the meds because you basically have to be on them for the rest of your life but I am looking forward to feeling better. I got the call on Friday that we were going to start meds. I picked them up and started Saturday. They say that it takes a couple weeks to really feel the effects but I already at least feel the effects mentally. As silly as it sounds, sometimes when things aren't right with our body we (and everyone else) assume it is something you aren't doing right.....get more sleep, eat healthier, etc. While a lot of time that is the answer, I think that I knew my body enough to know that might not be the answer this time. I didn't, by any means know, what it might be....I think that I just knew something was off. I feel mentally relaxed now to know that there is an answer. I guess we will see if the meds have any effect over the next few weeks. I have to go back in a month to check the levels again.

Anyway, as you can tell by my other post, I didn't really think that it was a big deal and probably would have procrastinated on it a lot longer had Erin not called me.

So, lesson of the post is 1. listen to your body and 2. be nice to Erin :-)

In other news, vacation has been pretty active so far. It is gorgeous out here weatherwise....nice almost 80s but breezy.....well, down right windy! I think I inhaled enough sand yesterday to be the equivalent of a 1 yr old eating sand at the beach. It was the hardest 1hr walk back to the car ever! Today is Santa Fe!

Sunday, May 2, 2010

Raining on my Parade

Yesterday morning I did another 5K, that is my third for the year. All week it was beautiul here.....you know, when I have to work, but the forecast for the weekend was not great. It was supposed to rain all weekend. Yuck. On Friday I checked the forecast and it said the rain wasn't supposed to start until 10:30. Since the run was at 9, that would be perfect. Unfortunately I was woken up at 6am by thunded, lightning and rain....yuck again. It rained for the entire prerace, during race, and post race (one of the girls in our group got second in her age group so we waited for awards). After I got to my car to drive to the pub the rain stopped and it didn't rain again ALL day....perfect. UGH. The rain was so bad at the beginning of the race that I could barely see.

The good news is that I finally broke the 3o min mark. My official time was 29:45 according to the race but I was a few seconds back from the start line and not coordinated enough in the rain to get everything started and stopped on my watch so I knew my exact time. Of course of the four of us, there were two of us that finished right together and then the other two girls finished in 25:36 and 26 something. Yeah, I will never be that fast. At least it is sweet to always have someone waiting for you and cheering for you at the end :-) I think that our next one isn't until June and I can't decide what the goal should be. I have shaved off 40 seconds in 6 weeks so maybe I could shoot for 29 mins this time. I think that is pretty lofty though...not sure I will get that done.

6 more days until vacation!!!

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Back to Atlanta I go

I was really looking forward to being in town for 11 days before vacation but I guess that wasn't in the stars. I am headed back to Atlanta on Tuesday. It is a really quick trip (leave here at 6am and return at 11:40pm) so that part is good at least. I am going for an interview for the promotion that I applied for. I think that I have told most of you about it but they are combining my group (which I started) with another group and are promoting either me or the other manager to a senior manager to be over the whole group. Wish me luck. The interview is only an hour long and is with my current boss (which is sort of weird that they are making me do it in person but oh well).

The plus side (and the reason for such a late flight) is that I am going to get to see Maddox outside of the awful hospital lighting and do a little photo session with him while I am there :-) I can't wait. I will be sure to post some pics when I get done. I feel like I am getting REALLY rust with the ole camera! My ad design for the newspaper here is almost done and I plan to put it in the paper the last Saturday of my vacation so I can hopefully get some sessions scheduled up here before I forget everything I know :-)

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Maddox Glenn Abernathy







Finally some pics of the little guy! I can't believe how much he looks like Ariyana did when she was born.

He had a bit of trouble with is breathing right after birth (hence the pics of him with the little monitors on him) and then he got better but had a little relapse on Saturday but luckily the nursess in special care did an awesome job and he was able to go home last night with the rest of the fam!

This last one is Ariyana when she was born....don't you guys think they look alike?

Friday, April 23, 2010

Marathon

I equate volunteering to watch a 2.5 year old overnight to saying you will run a marathon when a mile is the furthest you have run. This is the first time since Ariyana was mobile that I have kept her quite this long and don't get me wrong, she has done amazing! But, OMG is it tiring. That child never. gets. tired. Well, that isn't entirely true because I think she cried about 10 times in the last 30 mins she was awake.

We had a great day today. I went to the hospital this morning and I visited with my little nephew Maddox. He is so cute (pics when I get back to my personal computer) and looks just like Ariyana. Then Ariyana and I headed to Erin's house to play with Ella and Emma a bit. The whole way there she just kept asking "we go to the playground with the other kids?" Yep, we will. When we got to Erin's there was an abundance of new toys for her to play with so she was in heaven but promises of the park got her back in the car. At the playground we swang, went down the slide, played happy birthday, ran around in the grass and watched some baseball practice. After that we headed back to Erin's briefly and the Carrie's for pizza...yummy. The 4 girls all played so well together. It was amazing and I enjoyed chatting with everyone. I was a little nervous just because I haven't really ever seen Ariyana around other kids but I think she did really well.

When we got home she wanted candy...jelly beans (thanks Judd :-)) but happily took two little pieces of candy (the size of m&ms) and then brushed her teeth and went straight to bed. She didn't even argue or negotiate (her favorite thing).

As for me.....I can't think of a time when I have been more tired and thirsty in my life!! HA! Craig did ask all about it though so maybe that means he will want to get on the kid bandwagon sooner rather than later :-) He loves him some Ariyana time!

As for me...it is 10:23 and I am about to hit the sack...hope I sleep well with Ariyana here.

Monday, April 12, 2010

13 Seconds

That is how much faster I ran my 5K on Saturday. Not really a great improvement but at least it is faster :-)

My birthday was a good one....started it off with the 5k and then just sort of hung out for a while, went to the local fresh food market, and took a nap and then went out for Mexican with Craig and Ali. I wouldn't say it was a super exciting time compared to birthdays past, but it was a nice relaxing time and I enjoyed just spending time with Craig :-) It seems like with all the travel we don't get to do that very much. I also had planned on going out with Ali for a bit but even after a nap I was exhausted....not sure what the deal there was considering I had at least 7, if not 8, hours of sleep all week. No reason I should have been tired. Sad.

Sunday we rode our bikes a little over 25 miles. It didn't start out well for me so I am proud of myself for doing the ride. I have a road bike now and if you have ever seen people who ride regularly they have clip in shoes. Basically this attaches you to the bike (and also make it so you have to give less effort for the same result because your foot is attached to the pedal...think cages on the pedals in spin class for those who do that). Anyway, I couldn't get the darn thing hooked in and Craig didn't have much advice (he has been using them since they were invented so it is second nature to him) so I finally gave it a try....and I was riding, yay!! Then it was time to stop....feet hooked in, NOT GOOD!! So, I got one foot out to put it on the ground but the other one was still clipped in and all in one second I was on the ground with a huge pain in my knee. Needless to say, I didn't get the other foot out in time or lean toward the foot that was out while I got the second one out and next thing I knew I was on the ground with blood on my knee. Geez, that sucks. Do you know how bad a skinned knee stings? Probably not. I am guessing that for most of you the last time you had a skinned knee you were 10 and have probably forgotten. Um, it hurts! Needless to say, I am going to practice the in and out of the clips on the grass a couple times before taking them on the road and Craig is going to loosen them up so they are easier to get in and out of. I was not a happy camper (there might have been a small temper tantrum where I said I couldn't do it and stomped back to the car with just my socks on and refused to put the shoes back on) but I did get up and bloody knee and all, I rode 25.50 miles. I am sore today :-) Spin class should be interesting tonight...debating doing a little run right before it.....

Monday, April 5, 2010

Beautiful Weekend

That is the best way to describe this past weekend! Gorgeous would be another word and strange would be a third.

First, the strange. On Saturday I got up like always on Saturday to hit up the 8am (and 9am) spin class at the gym. I got there to find out that my teacher was not there and the 9am teacher was subbing for the 8am teacher. Yuck. The 9am teacher sucks, she is boring and she has never even ridden a bike outside. WHAT? So, I only go to her class when it is after the harder class and this week I had already decided that I wasn't going to her 9am class so I could run my 3 miles. When I found out she was subbing I just walked out of the class and opted to just run instead. I figured I could talk Craig into a bike ride or could work in the garden to get the rest of the workout in. When I got home I took a little nap and while I was sleeping I noticed the blinds in our room (they aren't really blinds but that is the best word) hitting the window. I thought Chloe was playing with the string and was about to yell at her when I looked outside and realized that the wind was going crazy....seriously, it looked like a tornado. Hmmm. After I finally got up and made breakfast I went to work on the garden and the weather was just strange. High winds, then calm, cloudy then sunny, cold then warm and raining then not. Bizarre! Finally at 4pm it stopped and was sunny the rest of the day. It was almost like a tornado but without the actual twister.

Sunday it was 75, breezy and sunny...PERFECT in my book! We took our bikes to a little town south of us and rode them for 14 miles before turning around and heading back....28 miles on my bike!! Go me!! It was so gorgeous and we loved it. I almost didn't notice the fact that there were no bunnies, eggs or Easter baskets for us that day.

Garden update: Planted the raspberry plants (that I got off ebay...HA!), moved the blueberries (who have A TON of leaves, nothing like the one we got last year) to their home pots, moved another plant that needed a bigger pot, planted garlic, lettuce, dill, and basil, dug the strawberries out from under their winter mulch, started seeds for some other plants like zucchini, artichoke, spinach and broccoli, made a little barrier around the onions so the deer would walk around them and not through them and tilled up the garden. For me, this next part is the hardest....all the waiting. Waiting for stuff to bloom and for us to be able to pick it and eat it. We should get berries from both the raspberries and the blueberries I ordered from a farm and we had a ton of strawberry plants that look as though they made it through the winter. Pea plants were starting to poke through and I think that by the time I get home this weekend there will be a lot more. I should take pictures of all these little areas so you guys can get visuals (oh and because I haven't touched my camera in months....literally.....so sad!!!). I am sure you guys just love to hear about it all :-) I really find myself very jealous of the houses we drive past that have huge grassy yards! I want a bigger garden! We have a big yard but about half of it is woods so that doesn't do me much good since all veggies need sun and not shade!

Other than that, not much going on....back in South Carolina and back on the road....I will get to be the aunt to a new little boy in 2.5 weeks!!! I can't believe it is already here!!

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Soap Box

Or more appropriate...garden box.

I know that some of you think that I have been out in left field with my eating but that is ok, I am comfortable with my choices and that is all that matters to me.

But, childhood obesity is a serious problem. If you don't believe it then do a search and you will find plenty on the subject. I think that it is awesome that Michelle Obama is going to take on childhood obesity and I hope that she does it in a great way and is very successful! I don't care what your political affiliation is, you have to agree it is a problem and while I do believe that parents should be responsible for their children, in our society the facts are that the children spend less time awake at home than they do in school or after school programs.

So, I started watching Food Revolution last Friday...disgusting but a must watch. It comes on ABC on Fridays at 8. If you have a more active social life than I do, please DVR it.

What can you do to help? Not really sure, but here is a start. Sign the petition! He did this over in the UK and actually GOT CHANGES (which you can read about under "school dinners" on the left side) so it really might make a difference.

Ok, off soapbox. I just really think that children are our future....why not make it so they are not the first generation not expected to outlive their parents!

Monday, March 29, 2010

Home Sweet Home

This was the first Monday in the month of March that I didn't have to get on an airplane. It was wonderful to "sleep in" (8:00 is way better than 3:30 or 6:30) this morning, to go to my spin class this afternoon and to cook dinner tonight. Of course the magic will end next week when I have to get on another plane but at least I can enjoy this week :-)

Update on the garden - it was pretty enough to work in it on Saturday but I went to my spin classes and then we went to the Crew game at 4 so I wasn't really able to get anything in the garden done (we had to leave at 2 and didn't get back until 8). On Sunday it was really damp and sort of rainy (poured on Thursday) so it wasn't the best time either. Oh well, I did order 5 heirloom (not genetically modified seeds) blueberry plants! They are already 3 years old and will be ready to give us blueberries this year!!! I am so excited. Supposedly they are really pretty for bushes and turn beautiful colors in the fall (double plus). We should get them in a few weeks and I can't wait.

Other than that the week involved A LOT of soccer. Ali also plays and I usually meet them for a drink before their games on Thursdays...this week I went straight there from the Cincinnati airport (in my sweats, Dayton is like that) and had a drink, then I got dragged to the game with them (maybe a little tipsy) and during Craig's game it started to snow REALLY hard...it was icy snow and since my car was still at the bar, we had to drive Craig's car.... not good! The one funny thing (sort of, but not really because it cost me $250) was when we were driving he asked me to reach back and punch the little plastic piece they call a window on the convertible top so I did. Yeah, it broke...hole in it....oops!! That could really only happen to me! Friday I went to watch some games because Ali and Craig were playing and then Saturday I went to watch for a little while before Ali and I went to a bar to see a cover band.

The rest of the week is supposed to be really nice here so get excited about more garden updates...HA! I won't really bore you guys until I get some actual crops.

Monday, March 22, 2010

1 Year Anniversary and Melisss's Travel Whirlwind.

Saturday was the one year anniversary of me moving to Ohio. What did I do for the big day? Well, you saw my garden post so apparently I celebrated being a hippie :-) I also went to a spin class and then met Ali at Craig's soccer place (where she was playing two games later....everyone I know in Ohio plays soccer since I met them all through Craig) and had a pitcher of beer with her while watching Craig play. Good times.

I have been really tired lately. I don't know what the deal is but I just feel like there will be these times when I just have to go to bed right that minute. Friday nights seem to be when this mostly happens....as it did this last Friday. I was supposed to go to a fish fry with Ali and Melanie but I just couldn't stay awake so I ended up in bed at 11 (normal for me is more like making myself go at 12-12:30, especially with the time change). Then I started thinking about it and I think that part of it might have to do with that whole traveling thing that I do...here was the schedule for the last few weeks:
5 days in sc
2 in Nashville
5 in sc (with a trip from hell home)
3 days home
3 days in Atlanta
3 days home
now 4 days in SF
then 9 days at home (YAY!!!)
That is a lot of planes...unfortunately April is looking the same way. Don't get me wrong, I love my job and traveling but it does start to wear on me. Speaking of which..I should go to bed...it is only 8:50pm here in SF but it is almost midnight at home...I figure I will be up at 5am SF time so I should sleep now while I am tired.

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Garden, Year 2

YAY for FINALLY some nice weather while I was home! I spent a lot of the day getting garden stuff and then working in the garden. When we ended the fall last year I wanted to do a compost pile but we didn't really have a place to do it so I just stuck everything in my garden...that made for some nasty clean up today. Yuck. I am going to do the day in bullet points because it is much easier than trying to tell a story..and honestly, I am lazy and tired from my day.

--drug Craig to Lowe's to help with getting the garden soil and such. I was disappointed that they didn't have any garlic I could plant but we did get some blueberry plants (yay).

--Since I can't find the seeds that I SWEAR I bought earlier in the year..I know I did because Craig made fun of me since it was February, I bought some more seeds but since they didn't have garlic we ended up at this other place that my friend Ali told me about and I am in love. It was about 120 degrees in the place so Craig's patience was short (and it was the SECOND store in a row I made him go to so I am lucky I got to go at all) but they had bulk seeds. You did it just like you do nuts or candy at the store..how cool is that? The best part? They were ridiculously cheap...seriously. You know I love cheap. The little packets at the store are around $1-3 depending on what you get, well, I got more of each kind for a grand total of $3 for about 10 different kind of seeds. Some of my packets (carrots, lettuce, etc) whose seeds weighed nothing were in the cents....much better than $2! Craig was wondering if the yield from them might be lower because they probably are engineered like the ones in the store. I am not sure about that but we will see this season and I just might take those packets back to Lowe's. It was like being in a candy store. Craig made me leave because he said if he didn't I would end up getting to excited and getting multiple packets of the same thing (he didn't REALLY make me but he was strongly suggesting).

--we built TWO compost bins type thingies today. YAY. I moved all the stuff from my garden to the bins. That was disgusting!!! I couldn't really do it with the shovel because the one thing it didn't have was good drainage so the leaves were wet and HEAVY so I ended up doing it with my hands (with gloves). It also had all our food scraps and smelled like the bottom of a lake...yuck. The good news is that we have a place for it and hopefully when it warms up we will see some compost turn into dirt.

--along the same compost theme....I was stepping on the ground near the compost bins that were now built and it was all spongy feeling. I asked Craig what was there (for fear I was stepping on some animal home...we have a TON of woods in the back of our house) and he said that was just where he has always put his leaves in the fall...REALLY?? Yeah, so I uncovered the top layer of this years leaves and low and behold...compost dirt!!! It was awesome...so "clean", you know, not muddy but really flaky and black and well, spongy. I dug some of it up and after tilling the garden, I put some in there. I think that I will try to dig up some more another day. It should really help the garden.

--this year's plants/crops will be: artichoke, zucchini, lettuce, carrots, peas, green beans, pumpkin, watermelon, garlic (if I don't find the starters I will just use an organic one from the store), onions, and possibly potatoes!! Plus strawberries and maybe bluberries and rhubarb.

--Finally, random fact....did you know that if you got an organic clove of garlic you can pull it apart and plant it and it will grow more garlic? I had no idea....it has to be organic because the other stuff often has "growth retardent" on it so it doesn't sprout between the time picked and the time you get it from the grocery. I have even had garlic sprout before but never thought about planting it. Another random fact...same for potatoes!! I saw potato "seeds" yesterday at the store and all it was were potatoes with the little eyes still on them....the instructions on the bag said to cut the potato up to where there was one eye per section and then leave it to "crust over" and then plant it. I think that same thing for organic applies but am not sure. I had some potatoes here that grew eyes while I have been on the road a lot lately and so I cut them up last night and I am going to try to plant them. I can't remember but I don't think they were organic..I usually do get organic but for some reason I don't think these are. The "eyes" have sprouted pretty big so I am hoping it works out...HA!


Well, that is it for this edition of Melissa's Garden :-)