Sunday, December 28, 2014

Friday, December 26, 2014

Merry, Merry!

In my world, it is Jammie Day.  IF I feel like it, I may get dressed, but it's not looking promising!  A day of relaxation?  Eh, we'll see!  My idea of relaxing has changed over the years... with so much busyness, relaxing sometimes means taking time to get caught up, without hustle and bustle.  It's a luxury to be able to move slowly, without my head racing through all the things that "need" to get done Right. This. Minute.  So far, my claims to fame include finishing a book (before I even got out of bed!) and enjoying a cup of tea with homemade Greek cookies that my sister-in-law made for us (YUM!).  This might just be my favorite day of the entire year.  The Christmas craze is over and a week of vacation stretches ahead with endless opportunities.'s nice.

I thought I'd chime in on a 5 On Friday.... but the blogging world is quiet today.  I'm going for it anyway... 

1.  My weekly weigh in was an exciting one this week!  30.6 lbs lost!! I'll celebrate now, because I am willing to bet that my next weigh-in is going to show a "slight" increase (no regrets, it was all worth it!!)

2.  I saw my best friend's daughter on Christmas Eve (I hope you are watching over her, Kerri.  She's having a hard time without you.)  I love that kid and it tears me apart to not see her as often as I'd like.  I am thrilled to say that she is spending the night with us on New Year's Eve!  I'm looking forward to having her all to myself... She makes my heart happy :)

3.  I hate to get my hopes up but... It looks like we may be having some more work done on this old house.  It will be a belated Christmas miracle if it all works out.  My cousin's fiancĂ© agreed to come look at our front foyer and replace the flooring.  We have lived in this house for 19 years and this is one area of the house that has never been worked on.  EEK!! I can't believe it is actually going to happen!!  (Once he gets here, I may never let him leave... there are so many undone projects that he could finish... I am giddy just thinking about it!)

4.  Fitness Update:  So far this month I have logged 119.0 miles, which is 10 more miles than I had on this date last month.  I need to get back into the dreadnmill habit.  With the day to day craziness, the dreadmill has been sadly neglected.  I have to say... I miss it (SHOCKING!) 

And then there's the Squat Challenge.  Well, just no.  I made it to 80 squats and couldn't make myself continue.  The knees?  They are thanking me for that very wise decision.  I'm over it.  Moving on...

5.  I feel that Christmas was a success!  I managed to pull it all together without losing my mind.  Time management is not always a strength for me.  But this year?  I nailed it!  This past week has actually been fun!  I had time to bake cookies (amazing!), visit with friends (long overdue), and get my house in "order" (we'll use that term very loosely).  

I hope everyone had a wonderful holiday... Final thought for today?  This is where I am right now....

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Wrap Up (LATE)

I had some internet connection issues this weekend, so I didn't get to post on Sunday ( is great when it works!)  So the days went by and here it is Wednesday, already!!  I'm going to combine a "few" things into this post and call November done!

1.  100 Mile Challenge... I did it!! I am SO pleased that I accepted this challenge!  I am actually challenging myself to another 100 for the month of December.  My total for the month was 133 miles.  YAY!!  I was nervous when I started, but as the days went by, I was amazed at how the miles added up.  So why "only" 100 for this month, instead of going for more?  Well...a couple things.  I was a little too enthusiastic and ended up really aggravating the bone spur in my foot.  Not a fun time and I need to take it "easy" so it will hopefully calm down and go back to its previously pain-free self.  Secondly, the reality is that as Christmas gets closer, my time to get on the dreadmill gets shorter.  As much as I'd like to say I'm going to put that first, let's be honest here... It's not gonna happen.

2.  Weigh-In Wednesday... I actually weighed in Monday, but what's a couple of extra days?  I was THRILLED to find I had lost weight this week.  My loss for the month of November was 7.6 pounds.  I'll take it!  I am 2/10th's of a pound away from a total loss of 25 pounds since September.  Approximately 16 more pounds to go to get to "Goal".  Another Big YAY!

3.  So, what's up for the month of December?  Well, since I liked the 100 mile challenge so much, I decided to go for another one.  Bring on the Squat Challenge.  I am not so confident I am going to rise to the occasion with this one.  Day 3... 40 Squats (total) done (still haven't done the 30 needed for today!) and my legs?  Well, let's just say my legs, up until 2 days ago, were living in delightful ignorance to the fact they are pitifully out of shape.  Today, they are not so delighted.  The reality is harsh, my friends.  Squats are no fun.

What about you?  Any goals you are thinking about for the month ahead?

Sunday, November 30, 2014

A Month of Thankfulness

A while ago, I posted that I was going to "pay it forward" this month, literally.  I don't live a charmed life, but I have TONS to be thankful for.  I found it harder than I thought to pick one charity a week to support.  Four great causes?  Just four?  Oh, my!  There are SO many!  But in the end, this is what I ended up doing...

Week 1 - The Food Bank.  This was a no brainer.  I donate to the food bank a few of times a year (both by the way of actual goods and financial support).  I am thankful for the food my family has and hope that my contribution helped others who may not otherwise have had something to eat during this holiday time.

Week 2 - Toys for Tots.  It is getting harder and harder to separate Thanksgiving and Christmas.  It seems like the two have morphed into one (Harry Thanksmas!)  The stores, the ads, the seems that we are bombarded by Christmas as soon as the back-to-school displays are put away.  By Thanksgiving, it's full on Christmas EVERYWHERE!  My kids aren't "little" anymore.  So those doll buying, perfect-toy-seeking days are over for me.  It pulls at my heart strings to imagine a child without any gifts at Christmas time.  Toys for Tots is a great program that makes kids' Christmas dreams come true.  So even though it was too early for ME to think about Christmas, I happily supported them this month :)

Week 3 - The Tomorrow Fund and Make-A-Wish.  These charities support making wishes come true for critically ill children.  I am so thankful my children are healthy.  Knowing that can change in an instant is sobering.  My cousin was diagnosed with cancer when she was a teenager.  We almost lost her.  Charities like this were there for her when she started on the long road to recovery.  After giving it lots of thought, I feel that paying it forward gives other families a chance to have something positive happen during some of the darkest days any family can have.

Week 3 - Woman's Shelter.  I am thankful for a safe haven to call home.  I am thankful for a supportive husband who thinks to world of our kids.  As a teacher, I see all kinds of family situations.  I am thankful there are places for women and children who don't have those things.  Women who take their children and leave their situations with nothing but the clothes on their backs; women who choose to live in their cars, rather than go "home"; women who need help getting back on their feet so they can make a better life for themselves and their kids.    

So that's it.  In a nutshell, I am simply thankful for the basic things in life.  It is hard to express thanks for everything that is good, especially when it seems to come at the expense of what others don't have, so this month has been a nice way to show my appreciation and gratitude while hopefully helping someone else.

Saturday, November 22, 2014

This BS is Killing Me

Okay, I am admitting to maybe having to tone it down just a bit.  Here's my sad tale of woe... Two weeks ago I was diagnosed with having a Bone Spur.  My foot, well, it hurts.  It hurts ALOT.  I've been a little gimpy since July (I don't rush to the doctors, as you can tell).  I was ignoring managing the pain and making an attempt to self treat.  Icing, massaging, stretching, ibuprofen...doing all the things the internet doctors recommended.  When I decided to notch it up with the 100 mile challenge, I knew I could be asking for trouble.  So here it is in a nutshell... 

These last couple of weeks weren't too bad, until Veteran's Day.  I had the day "off", so I stayed home and worked at taming the dust bunnies and cob webs.  I moved furniture, changed the curtains, washed walls, dusted, and vacuumed. etc.  It was fabulous.  Until Wednesday morning when I got out of bed.  YOWZER!  To say my foot was desperately unhappy is an understatement.  Apparently climbing ladders and standing on my tiptoes to reach the high places was just a little too much.  Since I am a slow learner, I made sure to do 2 miles on the dreadmill on Wednesday night and another 2.6 on Thursday.  'Cuz, ya' know, why not?

Well, last Friday was not a fun day.  When I got up in the morning, I almost cried.  Walking around usually helps to stretch things out and alleviates some of the initial discomfort.  Not Friday. Friday was bad.  I hobbled around work and was glad to get home.  I decided to take it easy and just did a brisk 30 min walk instead of the 2 mile walk/intermittent run that I normally do.  And then I took a break from the whole "I must do 2 miles a day" thing.  The days following, I did a couple days of easy miles and then took a couple more days off.

Yesterday, I went to the doctor.  And now I'm grounded.  No more running.  No more brisk walks.  LOTS of stretching, icing and massaging.  Plus the added JOY of a night splint (insert swear words here).  I'm going to look on the positive side.  With time (6-8 weeks) and strictly following the doctors orders, I should be able to walk pain free.  I CAN do slow/easy walks on the dreadmill, but the pace has to be kept between 3.0-3.5.  If I am a good girl and do everything right, when I go back to him in January there is a good chance I will be able to slowly reintroduce running into my life. 

Overall, I'm kinda bummed out.  I'm anxious to get better and I am concerned about the effect (or lack thereof) this is going to have on my weight loss goals.  *Sigh*      

Friday, November 14, 2014

Fitness Friday Update

ALG Uninterrupted
Happy Friday!!  This post is a link up with Aubrey over at ALG, Uninterrupted.  I'd love to get my act together and post more frequently, but I am having issues with time management (I don't seem to have enough time to manage!)  Anywho...

What a quick week!  Monday is my official "weigh in" day and I lost a tiny little bit this week (8/10th of a pound).  I was a little disappointed because I am killing myself on the dreadmill.  I have kept up with getting 10,000 steps in (at least!) every day, so that means making sure I spend time with my frenemy every day.  I had really hoped that that dreadmill would help me out, but I seem to still be stuck (I am attributing the 8/10ths to wearing jeans to weigh in last week and having lighter pants on this week.  The scale has. not. moved. at. all.)  It's hard to be motivated when nothing seems to be happening :(

In looking at the positive...  I did have a NSV this week.  I finally had to retire my "official weigh in pants".  I have been wearing the same pants on Mondays to weigh in since I started this journey.  Two weeks ago, I was thinking they were getting a tad bit loose.  Being that I didn't wear them last week to weigh in, I didn't think too much of it until this Monday morning when I went to get dressed and there was no way I could wear them... they just looked silly (and I was concerned that one wrong move would send them crumpling to the floor!)  So, I dug into the back of my closet and I now have two pairs of pants the next size down that I can wear.  Yay!!  

Quick fitness update... As of last night, I have logged 57.2 out of 100 miles for this month so far!  I do love the challenge of it all.  It has definitely helped keep my activity level up and I feel like I'm on the right track (even though the scale isn't really cooperating right now!)

Goals for this week....
1) Keep on keeping on... Continue exercising on the dreadmill and logging those miles.  It has to be helping, right?
2) Mix it up a little in the food department.  It gets boring eating the same things over and over again.
3) Make good choices... More birthday parties = tough choices.  Stay strong!!
4) Keeping this in mind as we move into another week...

Saturday, November 8, 2014

Being Thankful

       I am not a fan of the "30 Days of Giving Thanks" posts that appear daily on my Facebook feed.  It's not that I am not thankful for things in my life or that I think others are not appreciative for the things they post, but I think the concept of reiterating the same things, year after year, has become a little worn out.  Every year I read through post after post of the "typical things"... family, friends, health, children, spouse, etc.  Then there are the funny things, the things that I shake my head in agreement and say, "Yup, I am thankful for these things too!"  You know what I'm talking about... coffee, blow dryers, wine, chocolate, nail polish, etc.

       This year, I've decided to change it up.  I AM thankful for the things in my life.  I have been abundantly blessed and consider myself very lucky to have been able to take advantage of the opportunities that have come my way.  Life may not be perfect, but I am more than okay.  For the month of November I have decided to pay it forward, literally.  Each week I am choosing a charity that reflects something I am thankful for.

       When I reflect on what I am thankful for, my mind always seems to drift to those who may not have the basic necessities in their lives.  At this time of the year, I think of people who depend on agencies to help them through the winter months ahead.  The holidays are coming, the weather is getting colder, and overall expenses seem to just keep going up.  Families, who maybe were "just making it", find themselves struggling. So, for my first charity, I donated to a food bank.  This was actually an easy choice.  November seems to be ALL. ABOUT. FOOD, so I think it was a good way to get into the spirit of giving :)

How about you?  What do you think of the idea of giving thanks in this way?

Friday, November 7, 2014

Fitness Friday Link Up

ALG Uninterrupted

It's been a long time since I've done a link up... but I have been inspired by Aubrey over at ALG.  I don't consider myself very tech savvy, but I'll give it a go.

So far this week, I have been REALLY motivated, without very much success on the scale.  Some weeks have just been like that.  When I weighed in on Monday, I had lost 2.6lbs (for a total of 17.2 since September).  The scale has been stuck. on. my. weigh-in. weight. all. week.  It's been frustrating, but I'm hoping that it will start to nudge down (even a little!) before I have to go face the "official" scale again after the weekend.  On the plus side....  

My fitness this week has been fabulous!  On Monday, I splurged and bought myself a Vivofit and I LOVE it!  I can be a total gadget girl and this makes my heart happy.  It's a watch, a pedometer, it totals miles, sets goals, AND tells me how many calories I've burned.  Woot! Woot!  I figured that I "needed" it to help track my progress in the 100 Mile Walk/Run Challenge that I decided to do.  I was a little afraid that I was being unrealistic (100 Miles?  In a month?  Seriously?), but now that I am just a few days in, I think it is totally doable.  I have increased doubled my dreadmill use and actually look forward to ticking off the miles every day.  It's just the motivation I need as we roll into the holiday season.

My plan for the upcoming week?
- Keep walking/running everyday, even if I can only fit in a short period of time.
- Keep tracking those points.  It's working.  Don't give up!
- Make good food choices.  I have some challenging days coming up... Two birthdays, lunch out with friends, and a work related dinner... I got this, right?
- Be nice to myself.  Celebrate the positive... 

25 miles down....75 more to go!!

Happy Friday! :)

Sunday, November 2, 2014

October? Where did it go??

Holy Moly... October is a blur!! We've been caught up in volleyball season. I have loved it, but I am relieved, on some levels, that it is over. Sadly, this is going to be a year of "lasts". Girlie is a senior, so Tuesday was her last game. Last Friday was Senior Night and I managed to not embarrass myself (I cry during sad commercials, so this was quite an accomplishment for me!) This Friday will be her last Homecoming Dance. "Soon" (as in, before we know it!), it will be June and she will be saying good-bye to High School. Amazing, just amazing. We still have Bubba, who is a freshman, to get through school, but it's different with the first. In less than a year, I am going to be the mom of a college student. I shudder to think that far ahead. Anywho...

It's been a while since I have posted. I finally stopped whining about my weight and kicked my butt back to Weight Watchers. So far, it's been the best decision I've made in a long time. I NEED the accountability. As I have said before, I have the tools and theoretically "know" what to do, but I have been uninspired and unmotivated to help myself. My official Weight Watchers start date was September 22nd. As of last Monday, I have lost 14.6lbs. Yay, Me!! I love the ease of the phone app where I can track points every day and the meetings keep me motivated as far as new food ideas and "wanting" to exercise. Nothing is more motivating than success. My clothes fit better and I feel better overall. I don't care if I lost half a pound or three pounds in a week...I am going in the right direction :)

So, what's my end goal? Hmmm...I'd like to lose about 26 more pounds. I *may* decide to do a fitness challenge this month (I know the month has already time like the present to start, right?) While surfing through some blogs, I came across a 100 mile challenge for November. Yeah? Maybe. I walk/jog about 2 miles on the dreadmill every other day. I don't wear a step tracker, but I could. At tomorrow's weigh in, I'm going to see what they have for activity monitors. If I ramp it up, maybe more every other day or increase the number of days, it may be doable. With the holidays coming, I'm going to need all the help I can get. We'll see! As we can all tell just through my blogging habits, commitment and follow through are not always a strength for me! I'll leave you now with some final words (this sums up how I feel on this cold and rainy Sunday afternoon)...

Sunday, September 7, 2014

September Photo A Day

I am trying... This month has been REALLY tough (and we are only 7 days into it!).  The difficulty started at the end of August.... I didn't see it it coming.  This has been a year of "firsts" and I have tried to mentally prepare myself for each milestone.  Birthdays, holidays, events, traditions... all the things you would "expect" to be hard after someone has passed...well, this one blindsided me.  It never occurred to me to prepare for going back to school.  Oh, I know that I need to brace myself for the changes to my schedule, the new pressures, and unexpected "stuff" that comes up, but I never expected to feel so alone, so bereft, so incredibly SAD at the beginning of the school year.  I am feeling the loss of her so much right now it is sometimes physically painful.  It takes my breath away.

I am and have been reflective, has not been good.  I know the "why"....but knowing why doesn't make it any less painful.  This would be the time of year where Kerri and I would be together, a lot.  Talking about our classes and kids; getting together to just sit and talk as we prepped things to start the year; trying to solve the problems of the world as we moved into another year of teaching.  We would be commuting "together", chatting up a storm, on the way to work every day; comparing notes and commiserating on the way home every afternoon.   That was our daily/weekly/yearly "routine".

Okay.  So this sucks.  Now what?  I don't have an answer for that.  Counseling?  Maybe.  (I never thought I'd be "there", but it's an option I can't ignore.)  Do SOMETHING (like take a class, go on vacation, get a massage)?  Possibly.  But things aren't good here.  Financially, it's been a difficult couple of months.  After thinking about what IS possible, I decided to get back into "Photo A Day".  It was something I enjoyed doing with Kerri, so it is bittersweet, but it gives me a daily distraction.  It also gives me a reason to get out of the house...because sometimes that is a problem too!  So, today is Day 7 and I have managed to complete every day (though I was a little late on days 5 and 6!)  I'm going to try to collage the pictures at the end of the month (we'll see if I can do a whole month!).

The photo at the top is one I took today.  The prompt was "Upside Down".  My life feels topsy turvey right now, but it was nice to take a break and focus on something fun.  I'm going to look into some photography "Meet Ups" to see if I can get involved with a group who has interests similar to mine.  My husband even mentioned taking a photography class to learn how to use my fancy camera.  We'll see. 

It's overwhelming, but I'm going to get through this. 

Monday, September 1, 2014

Checking in...

The last few weeks have been a blur.  I kept thinking that I *should* sit down and blog, but it just didn't happen!  So, what's up?

Well, the busyness of the school year is upon us.  Back to school for Girlie, Bubba, and me.  Setting up my classroom, getting through the first week, helping Bubba finish up his summer packets, figuring out this whole college application process with Girlie... the list just goes on and on.  One moment of panic I have recently had is over the realization that I am going to have my picture taken with Girlie at Senior Night at the end of volleyball season.  Yikes!  I avoid pictures like the plague.  Not. A. Fan. At. All.  I guess it's time to get serious.  I am never going to be happy with my weight, but I could be a whole lot happier than I am right now.

I THINK I have about ten weeks until the season ends.  I am challenging myself to lose a pound a week, for the next ten weeks.  If I lose more, that would be FABULOUS.  But we'll start with baby steps, after all...I've been talking about losing weight forever now and have had many "restarts", yet I am STILL in the same exact place I was in June (at least...without thinking about it too hard.  It's probably been a lot longer than that!).  No one to blame but myself, moving on.  I am returning to Weigh in Wednesday as a way of "owning it".  Let's see if it can happen... 

Most popular tags for this image include: fitness, motivation and workout

One by Wednesday.  That's all, just one.  Baby steps!!   

Saturday, August 16, 2014

This Week

       Holy Moly!  What a quick week!  I haven't been feeling very accomplished lately, but when I sat down to write "something" tonight.... and figure out Where In The World Did This Week GO??.... I should probably cut myself some slack.  This week was busy with end of the summer/back to school stuff.
       Girlie is entering her Senior Year and hasn't been all that wild about figuring out what she would like to do after high school.  She wants to go to college, but isn't really ready to face it.  Well, this week we began the process of figuring out the "where".  After visiting three colleges out of state, and what feels like a million miles in the car, she has one in-state and two out of state colleges in mind.  All three are winners for me, but there is still a mountain of paperwork and the question of how to pay for it all.  If you haven't had a reason to pay attention to the cost of a college education, all I can say is WOW!  The sticker shock is UNBELIEVABLE.  I'm going to think about all that "later".
       I started setting up my classroom (where did the summer go??).  Thursday and Friday I went to work to begin the process.  The first couple days in the building are always spent catching up with friends, unpacking storage areas, and trying to wrap my head around the fact that it's actually time to begin again.   I have tons of things to do at home (labels, packets, planning), so I probably won't make another trek in until Wednesday.  We'll see.  Once I get back into the groove of things, it's hard to stay away!  Next Friday is kindergarten orientation... ready or not, here they come!
       On the home front, I tore out another carpet!  Bubba's room is now carpet free and it is such an improvement!  Oh, the floor underneath leaves much to be desired, but that funky odor that was hanging around (boy funk, cat funk, carpet cleaner smell) is gone.  Hooray!  I did have a moment of anxiety over the fact that we don't have a plan to have it replaced for a while, but it needed to be done.  Again, I'm just pushing everything off and believing that this will all somehow work out.
       I guess those are the major highlights.  I also managed to attend three meetings, bag up and deliver items for donation, do some back to school shopping, go to an anniversary party, hang out with friends, get my hair cut, and take Girlie to volleyball practice and work (because, ya' know, the whole truck thing....which is working itself out, too.  It's not totaled.  I'm glad about that. Right?).

Accomplished?  Unaccomplished?
  Nothing feels "finished", but lots of little things have been checked off the ever growing list of "poo2do".  
So, I guess it depends on how you look at it :)   


Saturday, August 9, 2014

Tough Love

        It's never dull around here.  Bubba is away for a week camping; this is his first "away" trip...ever.  He is 14 and likes to stick close to home.  He has a close friend and they have done many sleep overs (here and there), but this is with a different friend.  A friend I don't even really know.  He called me last night, just to say goodnight.  As I was having a little "awww" moment, I realized that we/I am definitely transitioning into the next phase in a life with children....they are moving apart, breaking away, and beginning to find their own way.  It makes me a *little* sad, but I know it's what is next and it's not always going to be easy.

So, there I was, having a peaceful moment, feeling a twinge of bittersweet...

       And then the text came.  My husband was at the local park with my daughter.  Her truck is most likely totaled and they were waiting for a flat bed to take it away.  My first response was... Is she okay?  After the "yes" came the.... "I'm gonna kill her."  This is the second time THIS MONTH that she has done significant damage to her truck.  The first time cost me 1,000.00, with the agreement that she will be paying it back.  We have tried to instill good values, an appreciation for what has been freely given and the understanding that a vehicle is not a TOY.  Obviously, we have failed.

     Grrrr....Totaled means no truck.  Totaled means I AM NOT replacing it.  Totaled means....hey, it sucks to be you and you need to figure out the when and how YOU are going to get a new one.  Totaled means that my husband and I are going to need to stand together (something he will struggle with because Girlie is his princess and princesses should never be sad).

       I'm not really sure what to hope for... totaled does mean no truck, however then I play taxi service (when I can...I do have somewhat of a life) and have to deal with teenage angst.  Not totaled means another repair bill... on top of the first repair bill and the bill we had to pay last week when my husband's truck broke down.  I guess we'll have to wait and see what the repair shop says.  Good times, good times.

Seriously now, is boring too much to ask for?

Saturday, August 2, 2014


       Alright, I'm in a slump.  So, I thought I would reassess and do a little check in to see how I am progressing with my "poo2do" list.  Not bad so far!! 

Summer Bucket List:
1) C25K - on hold :(
2) Los Angeles Trip - It was Great!
3) Get a Tattoo **YAY**
4) Organize my school world (especially in the area of Science!)
5) Take advantage of some tech training through work
6) Beach Time - Some, but not enough!
7) Get some scrapbooking done - My niece's baby book is done! She's 8.  Don't judge me :)
8) Get some cross stitching done
9) Hang with friends and family - Never enough of this!
10) Get some house "stuff" done - Hmmm...what else can I get into around here?
11) Read - Yay! 
12) Fix the template of this Blog! (Ugh!) - while still a work in progress, the template is "better".
13) Blog at least once a week - A work in progress.

There are some things that just aren't going to happen (#5 - tech training); it just wasn't meant to be.  Other things have worked their way on to the list.  Things I had either forgotten about or have just come up.  I think this sums up where I am right now...

       Looking back (and ahead!), I need to get moving on some of the goals I have set for myself!  I have things that MUST get done, but I don't want to do them (ignoring them hasn't made them go away).  Organizing my school world is clawing its way to the top of the list.  A plan!  I need a plan!  I only have a couple more weeks until I go back to work... Yikes!!  Time goes by so fast!!


Thursday, July 24, 2014

A Tattoo? YES!

       Yesterday, I finally did it!  The stars and moons aligned and AMAZINGLY it all worked out.  I got a TATTOO!!  I am so thrilled, I don't even have words :)  Here's the story... I have been kicking around the idea of a tattoo for a while.  Years, in fact.  I had a plan but it just never seemed to be the right time.  When Kerri died, I changed my mind about the design and talked about honoring her memory by getting a replica of the tattoo she had on her wrist.  For my birthday, my husband encouraged me to follow through with my plan with a poignant note about memories being worth more than material things (and he also provided the funds to make this happen...thanks, honey!).
       And so the journey began... Where did she have it done?  Could I find the artist?  Could  the design be replicated?  Should I have it placed in the same spot?  Would I actually go through with it???       
       After some bumps in the road, things just fell into place.  Months ago, I had casually mentioned my plan to a friend of Kerri's and she thought she remembered the place Kerri had had it done.  Thankful to have a place to at least start, I checked out the tattoo artist (Glenn) online, looking at samples of his work and it just looked "right".  The style was a fit and I nervously made the decision to have him do the work, even if he was not the original artist.  My cousin, Katie, and I went off to the tattoo parlor with the hope and a prayer that we had the right one.  Well, not only was it the right place.... Glenn had a record of when Kerri had been there (3 years ago!!) and a copy of the exact stencil he had used for her tattoo.  To say I was excited (and relieved!) is an understatement.  I wanted to do a little happy dance right there in the tattoo parlor!!  I'll say it again... I AM THRILLED.  I think it's beautiful and while it was a bittersweet day, it was so worth it.                  

Love the "Old School"/Retro look :)

So...How about you?  Do you have a tattoo?  Does it have a special meaning? 

Sunday, July 20, 2014


       I haven't talked written about this in a while.  And it's not because she's not always on my mind.  It's more because I don't want this space to be all about grief.  In many ways my grief has been private (ironically said...since I blog about it!), but there are times it has to come out in some part of my world, so please bear with me.
       As I have said in previous posts, grief is not linear.  It definitely ebbs and flows.  I can usually tell when the wave is coming.  It builds over time, starting slowly and then finally consumes me when I hear a song, see a picture, or do something that reminds me of her.  Kerri and I were always "in for a penny, in for a pound".  We never did things half way and together, we tackled all kinds of crazy tasks.  I look back over the past few days and there were signs.  I knew it was starting on the day I ripped out the carpet in my daughter's room.  It began with a simple thought..."Ya' know, you should be here, helping me with this."  As I sat on the floor pulling out the seemingly four thousand staples, I found myself walking down memory lane, laughing to myself about our various misadventures, and again, for the millionth time, wishing she was here.
       That day was too busy for a breakdown.  I pushed the emotions aside and carried on.  A couple of facebook comments/posts on Friday helped the wave build.  Her friends and our family often post pictures and make comments that bring everything crashing down, but still... I held it at bay.  I knew I was in trouble yesterday.  I was tired.  But not in a physical way.  Emotionally, I felt weary and unable to cope.  Sleep is one way I escape, so sleep I did.  The last two days I have felt unmotivated and uninspired.  Uninterested in life around me.  There are times I wonder if it would be better to just "go with it" when it begins.  Just get it over with; embrace it, let the tidal wave sweep me away, deal with it then and there, and hopefully move through it quickly.  Does that make sense? 
       Today was tough.  I've had my cry.  I look like hell.  I've listened to sad songs and gotten mad at myself for wallowing.  I am hoping the tide will now turn and I can return to what is still the "new normal", even though it's been nine months since she's been gone.  Time to regroup and move forward.

Missing you still, my friend.  Some days are "easier" than others.

Friday, July 18, 2014

This and That

Hey!  It's been a while!  It's been a "little" crazy here.  Since I last blogged, I have traveled to beautiful California for a conference, come home to decisions, decisions, decisions about my house (vinyl siding!  Yay! FINALLY!), completed some home improvements myself (bye-bye carpeting!), and run around like a crazy person driving my kids here and there.  So.  Where to start?
       California was GORGEOUS.  Hot, but dry.  No humidity?  I'll take it!  With 2 days of travel, I was gone for a total of 5 days.  Three days in sunny California.  Most noteworthy?  We ate.  We ate well.  I DID weigh in this past Wednesday.  A two pound gain, but I'll take it.  I'm surprised it wasn't more!  One of my favorite places was a place called Gladstones.  Great food and a BEAUTIFUL view.

Love the colors as the sun set :)
       The call came about the vinyl siding while I was in California.  "We'd like to start Monday."  Ummm...Sure!  All the "stuff" was delivered on Monday and construction began nice and early on Tuesday. (Rise and shine, Buttercup!  Flight arrived at 12:45am, home at 1:15am, in bed at 2:00am...up at 6:30am.  UGH!)  This project is LONG overdue.  I hope I don't have buyer's regret.  We've always lived in "the big white house on the corner".  It's now going to be "the big green house", but when they started removing the white siding there was a lovely red color underneath.  Oh, Red?  Yup, the same color my husband would have picked for the siding, but I just couldn't picture it.  I was afraid it would be too much.  It wouldn't have been.  But now?  Well, we're going green and it's going to be GREAT!  Right??     
Getting there!
       Since the mood around here is "just get it done", I decided to finally tear out the carpet in my daughter's room.  It was a little smelly from our bad kitty and needed to GO (so does the cat, but that's another story).  So, razor tool in hand, I set to work.  Things I have learned from this experience?  1) Replace the razor frequently.  The job is MUCH easier with a sharp blade.  2)  Tack strips hurt. ALOT.  Wear shoes.  3) Flip flops are probably not the best shoes for the job.  But they will do.  4)  Gloves, while optional, are probably a good idea.  All those little tacks and staples?  They leave you looking like you've been mauled.  All that being said, the job is done.  It's not pretty, but it's done. 
That's all for now...It's been a busy couple weeks, but busy in a good way.  

Hoping for a productive weekend :)

Cheers!  Happy Friday!


Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Confessions of a Slug

       Yesterday was a total bust and today isn't looking much better!  I didn't walk move at all.  I went to the beach and laid there, all day, until it was time to come home; hot, sweaty and tired.  I ate ice cream, and loved it.  We had calzones for lunch and they tasted GREAT.  And now?  Now I need to get my mojo back or be resigned to the fact that those numbers on the scale are going to start creeping up again.  Sadly, I am feeling much the same today and need to find some motivation to do SOMETHING.  Laundry? Cleaning? Packing? Shopping for last minute items?  The list goes on and on!  And yet, here I sit!
My view yesterday!

Thursday, July 3, 2014

Oops... "Wednesday" Weigh In!

       I am so NOT good at posting when I say I am going to, but... I did weigh in yesterday.  It only occurred to me LATE last night that I hadn't written about it here.  What kept me so busy?  I had an amazing day shopping with my friend.  We love going to Wrentham Mall.  What a great place to poke around, shop, and eat!  In addition to the "must do" stores we also roam around a few that just beg to be visited.   We had loads of fun, but returned home hot and tired, but I digress.  The weigh in wasn't so exciting.  I didn't lose, but thankfully didn't gain.  It is SO hard to deal with moderation and control when I have been eating out so often.  I LOVE spending time with friends and this has been such a nice change from how life "usually" is, so I am not complaining.  I am, however, being reflective on how I am exercising.  Since I am now walking, instead of trying to kill myself running, I am going to plan on walking every day.... even if it is only for a short amount of time.  I am hopping on the train with those who are doing a monthly challenge.  Here's my personal challenge.... walk, every day, for the month of July (which will be a total of 30 days, since I did not walk yesterday!).  I don't know how that will play out next week when I go to California, but we'll cross that bridge when we come to it :)

Monday, June 30, 2014

Yeah. Not today.

Ugh.  That's how I'll start.  I don't know if what is going on with me is mental or truly physical.  I have been doing C25K for a few weeks now and I am slowly coming to believe that, with perseverance, it IS possible to get to the end goal.  Until yesterday.  Yesterday, I THINK I felt a twinge in my ankle.  A twinge that freaked me out because I don't want to end up back here.....
Ironically, I am in exactly the same place (Week 3, Day 1) as I was approximately a year ago.  I have been telling myself that.... NO, I am fine.  It's not at all like it was then, when I didn't realize what had happened and that all I was doing was making it worse by trying to work through the pain.  But that little twinge from yesterday?  It has me backing WAY off.  A little tiny bit of running today and then I just walked the rest of the loop.  I am frustrated because while I want to push it, I don't want to be stupid about this.  I am leaving for Los Angeles next week and I refuse to be back in that boot for my "vacation".  It is not happening!  

So, panic? Paranoia? Over reaction?  I hope I am just being ridiculous.  I really want this to happen.  I like the feeling of accomplishment and I would like to think this is making me stronger, that last year was just a fluke.  I am thinking I may need to talk to someone with more knowledge... it can't be that I am "overdoing it", yet I am obviously doing something "wrong".  I have been sensible about my pacing (taking it slow), have the right gear as far as shoes are concerned, and have been taking the recommended day off in between runs to allow for recovery.  Medically, everything is in the clear (bone density, over all health, etc.).  Taking a break over the next week.  I'll probably continue walking and/or try swimming.  Definitely need a plan for when I come back from the conference I am attending though.  Again, Ugh.     

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Wednesday Weigh In

True story.
       Well, it's been a week ALREADY!  I am happy to say I have lost 3 pounds.  I guess that's good (I know it is,'s like losing a deck chair off the Queen Mary).  I have been doing C25K every other day and I don't hate it.  I can't say I'm exactly loving it, but for now, it's doable.  Tomorrow, I will finish Week 2, Day 3.  I am not thinking about the weeks to come... one day at a time, one day at a time.
       I'm trying to be realistic about my approach.  I have been watching what I eat and drinking gallons of water.  It's hard to stay on track with cookouts and sometimes eating out, but in some ways it's easier being home.  I make better choices.  Instead of throwing "whatever" into my lunch bag and then finding other things to eat at work (candy, chips, crackers, etc), I am making healthier choices about breakfast, lunch, and snacks.  So, that's it for now.  Hoping for another good week ahead! :)  

Saturday, June 21, 2014



       Vacation is FINALLY here.  It's been a really long school year and I desperately need to recharge my batteries.  I have "big plans" for this summer, and no plans at all.  I'd like to pull my life back from the fringes and start to feel a little more centered.  Yesterday, I set some goals for myself and I am going to "try" to stay true to them. 

       As always, I NEED to lose some weight.  It is easier in summer.  I love the heat.  I love being outside when it's hot. So, I gave myself a pep talk, weighed in, set a target, and strapped on my running shoes.  C25K, here we go again!  I am forcing myself to do this at a reasonable pace.  I am taking a day off in between days, even though today killed me.  I don't want this experience to end like the last time!  I also sat down and thought about what "things" I would like to see happen over the next couple of months.  I definitely need to keep busy.  It is the key to my sanity.  While I acknowledge that I need some down time, a LONG stretch of time with no goals, with nothing to do but wallow, is not a good plan.  So... here are "a few" ideas that have been rattling around in my head...

Summer Bucket List:
1) C25K
2) Los Angeles Trip
3) Get a Tattoo
4) Organize my school world (especially in the area of Science!)
5) Take advantage of some tech training through work
6) Beach Time
7) Get some scrapbooking done
8) Get some cross stitching done
9) Hang with friends and family
10) Get some house "stuff" done
11) Read
12) Fix the template of this Blog! (Ugh!)
13) Blog at least once a week

That's quite a list for a not-so-long time period!  I MAY not get to all of it, but I'm okay with that too.  The first three are what I am really looking forward to... whatever happens after that is all a bonus :)

Saturday, March 29, 2014

Holy Hot Mess!

There are times in my life I look around and think "Whose life is this???"  I've been busy....really busy.  This past week was a little crazier than my normal crazy.  In addition to my regularly scheduled program, I also managed to squeeze in: five meetings (2 before work, 3 after), a College Fair with my daughter, mentoring a colleague, dinner out with my brother (totally unplanned, but a nice break!) and the added craziness of being evaluated, conferences, etc.  Anyway, I knew in a "oh, this is going to catch up with me" way, that things would eventually be bad.

While I was out, my house went rogue.  Dishes, laundry, dust, pet hair, stuff laying around.  It was a day of reckoning around here today.  Dishes?  Let's do a head count.  How many people live here?  The answer....4 (well, sometimes 5, if I count my son's best friend).  How is it even POSSIBLE in a house with a dishwasher that Every. Single. glass, plate, and utensil is dirty?  I just don't get it.  

Laundry?  My laundry has laundry.  I don't get that either.  Even if I could run my washer and dryer, straight through, from now until tomorrow night, I would not have it all done within the weekend.  It's been going all day.  I can't even count the number of loads I have done, and yet...still not caught up.  Again.. How many people live here?  4?  Are you sure?

And finally, the dust?  Ugh.  It's been a while.  Let me just say that those dust bunnies aren't too smart.  If they stopped hiding quietly under the beds and in corners and hooked up with the pet hair.... well, let's just say they could have taken over the world.

I've done lots today and I suppose I should feel accomplished, but there is still so much more to do.  Tomorrow is another day.  Right?  I wonder what new things I can find to tackle.  Pretty sure I'm not going to have to look too far.

Sometimes I think I go back to work to rest.

Thursday, March 27, 2014


I hate when I can't figure something out.  It bugs me.  Alot.  When I "crashed" my blog a couple days ago it was KILLING me that I couldn't figure it all out.  I have a slight smile on my face right now because I finally figured out the Blog List portion of my "rebuild".  (A couple of downloads here, some tweaking there and Voila!) 

So in summary... it's still not perfect.  I may try again at reconfiguring the template.  But...a certain peace has come to my land knowing that my "stuff" is all back where it should be (at least for me). 

Again.... first world problem.  Silliness, really. 

Relax, girl. Relax.

Monday, March 24, 2014

Blogger Angst

     UGH!!  I was messing around where I should not have and I deleted my blog template.  Of course it wasn't backed up.  Of course I can't find it again.  And now?  Now I am supremely annoyed.  I can't get my blog list to post on the blog.  The followers button is no longer available, apparently one must convert to Google+.  I don't want to convert to Google+.  I am thankful others have had similar problems, because I have been able to google some answers.  Google and I....we have a love/hate relationship right now!
     I liked the way my blog looked.  I was TRYING to find out why the header was no longer appearing.  Really?  I have spent the better part of the past two nights looking for a new template that I like.  This one is not perfect but I am giving up on it for now.  I know this is a first world problem, but could I please catch a break???

** Changed the template again (just can't leave it alone!)  Followers are back, but still no blog list!**

Sunday, March 23, 2014

"Too Bad, So Sad"

     Time is revealing that grief is not the linear path that I once thought it was.  In some ways, it is very much like a roller coaster; it has its highs and lows, sudden jerks and stops.  In other ways, it is like the waves of the ocean; receding and then sometimes gently rolling back into shore or returning like a tidal wave.  There are moments where I think to myself "I got this", where I am beginning to feel the peace of acceptance.  Then there are moments where there is no peace.  There is a spiraling down to the place of "how can?"  How can she be gone?  The place of selfishness.  How can/do I move on?  So much of me was tied up in her.  OUR interests, OUR family ties, OUR friendship.  It is tough to move on to be alone, with just me.  I have friends, one in particular, who are there, but it is not the same.  The silliness in life is gone and I miss that.

     I'm in a strange place.  I still feel like I am not anchored, that I am drifting along, going through the motions to get through each day.  When I lost my best friend I became detached from the things in my life that she shared with me.  I don't know how to get reconnected to those things.  When I think about those things and why I was involved in them, I didn't do them for her, I did them because I wanted to, but it was definitely more motivating and interesting to have a "partner in crime".  Now, things hold a kind of removed, distant interest for me.  Running, scrapbooking, nail art/polish, movies, tv shows, music, all the trivial "stuff" in life is just blah/flat.  I'm trying to get around it and over it, but I can honestly say that I am stuck and it is frustrating.

     One of the "stages of grief" is anger.  I'm mad, but not at her, at myself.  I need to snap out of it.  It is what it is... it's time to reclaim myself in all this.   I was recently asked how "things" are going and my response was "I want my life back".  This is where the two year old temper tantrum/whining comes in....  I don't want to make new friends, I don't want to work at things I used to enjoy, I don't want to feel this way anymore.

And then, there is a voice inside of me that answers back.... Too bad, so sad, but you don't always get what you want.

Sunday, February 2, 2014

Let's Try This Again

So, I apparently I am destined to make the same mistakes over and over (and over!) again.  My weight has yo-yoed up and down pretty significantly over the past few years.  I have definitely been on an upswing for quite a while now.  I am climbing (very slowly, kicking and screaming) back onto the "I have to lose weight" bandwagon. Tomorrow the "diet" begins..  I start again tomorrow.   

See that number up there?  That number up there that is hidden?  Yeah, me neither....I don't even know what it is.  I can't face it, YET.  But tomorrow morning... oh, tomorrow morning is going to be bad.  I kinda, sorta know how bad "bad" is going to be, but once I look at the real numbers, the reality slap is going to be painful.

My plan?  I guess it's a pretty simple one.  My treadmill FINALLY (hopefully!) arrives tomorrow.  It should be here when I get home from work.  The plan is to USE IT.  Everyday.  Even if it's just for a short time.  Then there's the eating part.  Welcome back Body for Life for Women.  I can't say I love doing the program (after all, if I loved it, I would have stayed on it after I lost weight "last time"), but I don't hate it.  The eating part is not the issue.  The recommended food is what we normally eat, just eaten in a different way.  It's the work involved with getting everything ready to eat that kills me.  I am lazy about breakfasts and lunches.  Whatever I can throw in my bag on the way out the door is what I eat when I am at work.  Sometimes Rarely is it healthy and conducive to weight lose.  So today, in preparation for my big Life Style Change, I have readied an entire week's worth of breakfasts and lunches.  Yay!  Go Me!! 

I'm hoping that will help.  We'll see.  If not.... Omar had better start makes bigger tents.  I'm going to need one.

Friday, January 3, 2014

Happy New Year

I don't usually makes resolutions... but this year I want to make some changes.  So, I am writing them down as a way to hold myself accountable.

1)  First, I want to "choose joy".  Not in a spiritual way, but as a way to look at life through a lens of happiness and well being.  I want to seek ways to bring peace and contentment into my life.  I want to focus on the good and the positive.   

2)  While my "emotional/mental self" is first on this list, my physical self is next.  It is time to stop wishing for better health, less weight, more stamina... I have the tools in my life to change the numbers on the scale, it's time to make a commitment to a healthier lifestyle.

3) It's time to get rid of "stuff".  We have too much.  That's all there is to it.  In its own way, it speaks of a fortunate lifestyle.  BUT... it is out of control.  I don't need "all of this" and, quite honesty, it has become somewhat of a burden.  Salvation Army and consignment shops's all coming your way!