January 31, 2008

So we cheated a little...

NJJ ends today.

WOO freaking HOO!!!

Not that it has been a struggle. And it’s not like we actually followed all (2) of the rules. I just don’t like being told what to do, and I hate diets, so knowing it is almost February is making me really happy.

For the record, though, the only fried things I ate this month were the pork chops from New Year’s Day dinner that I didn’t even know were fried, and half of a chicken fried steak from the cafe in my office building one day when I was having a major brain fart. Chicken FRIED steak? C’mon Cheryl…it’s just disappointing on so many levels that I didn’t register that one.

And I only drank beer once. It was at Kevin and Chandra’s house and we were watching football, so I don’t even think that should count.

SK, however, cheated all freaking month. Oh yes, boyfriend—I am outing you.

Earlier in the month, I spent the evening in Spring and left SK at the apartment to fend for himself for dinner. I came home to a pizza box on the stove, which is NOT cheating as long as you don’t eat the whole freaking thing, and a box of chicken wings on the counter, which is SO cheating even if you only eat one little drumette. I laughed at him and commented on how he was just blowing off NJJ and did he want to quit already (Hi Pot, I’m Kettle and you’re black)? He countered by saying none of what he had just eaten was fried and he didn’t have any beer, so there. I looked at him kind of incredulously and told him that YES, he did eat fried food in the form of a chicken wing. His head almost exploded—he didn’t know chicken wings were fried. Sigh.

Also, he drank beer on multiple occasions with his friends at bars. I however, did not go to one bar all month. Yay me.

But I am feeling a little guilty that we didn’t do better this month.

We did eat reasonably healthy. I have actually been eating breakfast and am eating lots of salads and vegetables at lunch. We eat lean protein in the form of chicken and fish regularly, so I FEEL better.

I didn’t hop on the exercise bandwagon like I had planned to this month, but whatever. I am thinking I need to break down and buy a gym membership so that I can have access to a lap pool and classes that will keep my interest. I’d really like to start going to kick boxing classes. I think that would be fun. And useful when I find myself in a dark alley with a suspicious character. Because that frequently happens to me.

I could wallow in the fact that I didn’t do so great during NJJ. However, I would rather celebrate the fact that it is February and I can now go to Buffalo Wild Wings and dive head-first into a bucket of fry batter while drinking a pitcher of beer. Think they’d kick me out for that?

Progress?

No stiff neck this morning, and I woke up feeling pretty well rested. Whether that is due to the quality and comfort level of the new mattress or the ENTIRE BOTTLE OF WINE I consumed last night while watching TV is up in the air.

SK woke up this morning making out with the bed, because he is THAT in love with it.

January 30, 2008

I'll give it one more night...

Yesterday after work I raced home, stripped the bed, threw the sheets in the wash, and paced anxiously sat patiently, waiting for the delivery men to arrive with the BRAND! NEW! MATTRESS! By 7:02, which was technically past the first mark of delivery time, I was ready to call and bitch out Chuck, Mattress Salesman of the Year, but I resisted.

Bella was in a weird “let’s play fetch until I DIE” type mood, which, if you have ever met my dog, you know is just OFF. She loves to chase her ball or rope or bone for approximately 4 throws down the hall. Upon bringing the toy back to you after the 4th throw, she sits like she wants you to throw it again, but when you do she just watches it go. And then doesn’t go get it. Ever. If dogs could roll their eyes, she most certainly would roll them at you for that 5th throw. Didn’t you KNOW she just wanted to bring it back and be done? How dare you suggest that she should go get it again. Stupid human.

So she is hyper and running around and bringing me every toy out of her toy box, and I’m thinking, whatever…at least this is keeping me from staring at the clock, as I sneak another look at 7:26.

7:39, I hear what can only be a delivery truck downstairs. I run out onto the balcony and see the Mattress Firm van with the Mattress Firm men in it. They get out and I kind of scream, kind of hyperventilate, “IS THAT MY MATTRESS?!?!” And they look up at me and kind of laugh, kind of freak the hell out and ask, “Apartment blank-blank-blankity blank?” They took my yelp of delight and my happy dance 3 floors above them as a yes.

Because she was so hyper, I did what I thought was the smart thing and shut Bella in the extra room, where her kennel is. I toss in some toys and close the door. She immediately starts flipping out, throwing her body against the door and crying like I have cut off a leg. The delivery guys are bringing the mattress and box spring into the apartment at this point, and I am hopping around in the living room, pointing excitedly at the bedroom saying, “It goes in there! It goes in there!” like there is ANYWHERE else it could go. The guys are eyeing the closed doors that Bella is still frantically slamming herself into, which makes me feel a tiny bit guilty, so I open the door and try to calm her down. Turns out, she decided to empty her bladder all over the floor. Great. Gotta love the Fear Pee.

While the delivery guys are unwrapping the mattress and setting it up on our bed frame, I grab some paper towels to clean up Bella’s puddle. I’m mopping up pee when they leave, so I just shout “Thanks!” and go back to my mess. I let Bella out of the room and she runs around, looking for the reason she was locked up for a minute and a half (the guys were quick!) and I finally make it back to our bedroom to check out the mattress.

OH. MY. GOD.

It is MASSIVE.

I am 5’2”. The mattress is AT LEAST 4’ high, sitting in the bed frame. Which means that when I walked into the bedroom, I could no longer see the headboard of the bed behind the mound of mattress. It also means that to turn off my alarm clock in the morning, I was going to have to reach DOWN a foot and a half, which, REALLY?? Do I really need to explain how absent coordination is from my life at 6am? The huge mattress also posed a problem Chuck, Mattress Salesman of the Year, neglected to mention we might run into—no fucking way my normal queen sheets were going to fit on that bad boy.

I have one fitted king sheet, since I used to have a feather mattress on my bed in college, so I stretched it over the behemoth sitting on our now miniature-sized frame. BARELY fit, but it will do for now. No matter that it’s purple and we are now in dangerous territory as purple sheets does not a man-friendly bed make. It’s the only thing that fits!

So I make up the rest of the bed and I really wish I had thought to grab the camera last night and snap a picture, because there are no words to describe to you how ridiculous this mattress looks in our room. The queen top sheet doesn’t completely cover the sides or end of the thing, nor does our queen comforter. The pillows at the head of the bed add about a foot and a half of height, which, if you’re doing the math, now makes the bed TALLER THAN ME. Bella had a great time jumping up onto it, but let out a noticeable “HRUMPH” when she jumped off and landed. It’s like leaping out of the bed of a lifted truck.

SK got home and I showed him the comedy that is now our bedroom and a “woooaah…” was all I got from him. He had been at work for 15 hours yesterday, complete with a bus ride for the soccer team from Coach K, so he was pretty exhausted and ready to get in bed. We climbed up and let out a joint ahhhhh… Even though it is hilariously huge, that sucker is freaking comfortable.

At least, that’s what I thought. I woke up this morning with a stiff neck, cranky about the fact that I had woken up about 5 or 6 times throughout the night. I woke up grumbling and was getting ready for work when SK walked into the bathroom. He stretched his arms over his head, gave me a kiss on the forehead and gushed, “I slept SO well last night!” I growled back that I did not. He looked alarmed and went about getting ready for work himself, knowing that a conversation about how the bed would probably just take some getting used to would do NO good right now. He really does know me very well.

I got to my office and bitched to anyone who would listen about how my new mattress sucks and how disappointed I was. Apparently I just need to give it time. Chandra said maybe I was just so used to sleeping on a crap mattress that my body was adapting to the wonderfulness of the new one. Katy, my co-worker in Dallas, said she ran into the same issue with her new mattress, but now she sleeps like a baby on it.

Growl.

So time I will give it. But so help me, if I am not sleeping better in a week and am still waking up with stiff necks and sore shoulders, Chuck, Mattress Salesman of the Year, is going to have some explaining to do. And no amount of “memory foam’s,” or “movement recognition’s,” will help him this time.

January 29, 2008

Like sleeping on tiny little clouds...

I cannot wait until tonight. I don’t think I have ever been as excited to go home as I am right now. The chunk of my day existing between the hours of 7pm and 10pm will probably go down in history as 3 of the most anticipated hours in my life.

Why?

Because that’s when our new mattress will be delivered!!!

Don’t laugh.

If you do, your punishment will be to come over and sleep for a night on the mattress we’ve been living on for the past year. I am pretty sure when you wake up, a twisted, mangled mess of your former self, you won’t be laughing anymore.

Have you ever slept on an air mattress with a small hole in it? The kind of air mattress that, at the beginning of the night starts out all fluffy and inviting and air-filled, only to slowly leak said air throughout the night, causing you to wake up around 3am in a hysterical panic because you are DROWNING in the now half-deflated air mattress? That is what sleeping on our non air-filled mattress was like. Pure terror every single night.

SK bought his bedroom furniture and mattress when he graduated from college. Apparently he used to sleep right in the center of his bed because there is definitely an SK-shaped crater in the middle of his mattress. While this is not such a huge issue when one is alone in his bed, it requires major effort and strategic limb placement when both of us are trying to sleep in it. It really is impossible to get through the whole night without having that dream that you’re falling, only to wake up, arms and legs flailing, not able to breathe because your face is smushed up against a shoulder that is not yours. I can’t remember the last time I slept through the whole night and SK didn’t wake up complaining of shoulder or back pain.

Yesterday morning was the last straw for him. He woke up with his shoulder killing him, angry and crabby after another night of broken sleep. He got dressed and ready for work, black clouds swirling around his head, cursing the bed every time he caught sight of it. He looked at me and said furiously, “we are getting a new mattress TONIGHT.” Well, oooookay then.

So we go to the Mattress Giant Super Store after work. We were met at the door by Chuck, Mattress Salesman of the Year, and he immediately started saying things like “body forming memory foam,” “pillow top,” and “movement recognition,” and I thought my head was going to explode with the gloriousness of it all. We threw ourselves down on 20 or so different beds, rolled from backs to sides to stomachs, determined that a Tempur-Pedic was WAY the hell out of our price range, and finally found THE ONE.

She is going to be delivered tonight and I am so excited I think I might pee myself a little. Don’t bother calling me between the hours of 7 and 10. I won’t answer. However, if you are in the area, feel free to join us in the parking lot of our building for s’mores and roasted hot dogs. That pile of debris making up the kindling for the bonfire we’ll be roasting them over? That would be our old mattress.

January 25, 2008

What kind of world do you want?

The band, Five for Fighting, is generously donating $0.40 to Autism Speaks for *each time* this video is viewed. The funding goes toward research studies to help find a cure. When you have a moment, please visit this link to watch the video and pass it along to your friends and family.

What kind of world do you want?
Think Anything
Let's start at the start
Build a masterpiece
Be careful what you wish for
History starts now...


January 24, 2008

Obviously I have been at work too long…

I have found a word I would like to reintroduce to my vocabulary. And I think that you will all agree with me that it is probably one of the funniest words in all existence. Just saying the word makes me giggle, and seeing it written out conjures up the wildest images.

Are you ready? Can you stand the suspense?

CHEAPSKATE.

Isn’t it a riot? Say it a few times.

Cheapskate, cheapskate, cheapskate…

And when you say it enough, doesn’t it make you think of tiny little yellow fuzzy chicks, cruising about on roller skates, merrily cheeping their little heads off?

It does to me!

Which is why I need to leave my desk immediately and go home and have a very, very strong drink.

January 22, 2008

Tag!

Here's how you play: Once you've been 'tagged', you have to write a blog of 10 weird/random/ habits/goals/facts about yourself. At the end choose 10 people to be tagged , listing their names and WHY you chose them. Don't forget to leave them a comment and tell them to read your blog. You can't tag the person who tagged you, since you can't tag me back - let me know when you've posted your blog so I can see your answers.



So I was tagged by the fabulous Kristie B. to complete this list. While the phrase “at a loss for words” have NEVER EVER been used to describe me, I am finding it difficult to come up with 10 things about myself that are interesting enough to share with the world. Thanks KB, for making me think so hard on a Monday morning ;)


1. Until recently, I never wanted to get married. Ever. Not even to Luca Toni, who is THE HOTTEST MAN ALIVE. Despite the fact that my parent’s marriage is pretty much a sickeningly perfect example of how much marriage DOES work and how much is makes two amazing individuals an even more amazing couple, I just never felt like it was ever going to fit into my life plan, which was, obviously, to dominate the business world in stilettos. While I am still interested very much in kicking ass in the board room, I have realized that I would be happier doing it with a man who supports and challenges me by my side (and possibly dishing out said ass kickings in Converse…stilettos hurt). Admitting this doesn’t make me less awesome, nor does it make me a weak woman, and I know that now. I still have no interest at all in planning a wedding and really, no matter how hard you try to get me to, I am never going to care about flowers, but the thought of spending my life with a man who loves and cares for me no longer makes me throw up. So I think that’s progress.

2.
My mom is one of my best friends. We’ve always been close, but in the past few years I feel like our relationship has really grown. I actually listen to the advice she gives me now, and frequently call her just to talk. I am completely flattered when people tell me that I remind them of her, be it because of the way I look or because of something I do. She’s fun, she’s smart and she’s cool. I love that she’s not someone content to stand in the background and blend in. And good luck to you if you cross her. I hope people still think I am like her as I get older.

3.
I work much better in the afternoon than I do in early morning hours. However, I would prefer my work day to begin and end earlier, like from 6-3, instead of 8-5. This logic doesn’t make any sense to me, so good luck wrapping your brain around that one.

4.
There are few things in the world that frustrate me more than calling a business or a help desk and having to go through 20 minutes of touch-tone or voice-activated menus before ever getting to speak with a human being. Being in an industry that provides help desk services, I understand the importance of filtering to make sure your customer ends up in the correct department to get their issue answered, but when did “customer service” become so off-putting? GIVE ME A REAL PERSON, please.

5.
I wore acrylic nails for 5 years. Straight. Gag. I’ve always thought I had boy hands, and used to wish I had long, slender fingers and longer nail beds. I thought the nails made my hands look prettier. Turns out, they just made them look like I was wearing fake nails. I was spending upwards of $60 per month to keep them maintained and finally just ruled it a frivolous expense. I wanted to know what my hands looked like without white tips connected to the ends. Turns out, I really dig the nails I was born with. I got the imposters taken off and then just had my nails buffed…it was the most natural and pretty my hands have looked in…well, 5 years.

6.
I hate to run. I used to run all the time when I was younger. Now, I can’t stand it. Unfortunately, running is the most effective way for me to keep in shape. Running and swimming, but I don’t have my own pool and I refuse to pay for a gym membership. So I run. Sometimes. When I feel like it. Which is usually never. So really, I don’t run. I should, but like I said, I HATE IT.

7.
I am a really good cook. I used to despise cooking and thought it was way too domestic of a task, but then I started cooking for myself to avoid going out to eat every night and I found out that I am really, really good at it. AND I like it. I really enjoy making dinner for my friends, hanging out in the kitchen, drinking good wine and talking. And I especially like to see the looks on their faces when I tell them that YES, I made that and NO, it did not come pre-cooked from a box.

8.
I am super competitive about pretty much everything. I really can’t stand to lose, and if I am going to do something, I have to do it better than everyone else. This trait comes out most frequently when playing sports, trying to get ahead in my job, and during friendly games of Trivial Pursuit.

9.
I hate folding and putting away laundry. I will DO laundry all day long, as in, I will sort it then put it in the washing machine then put it in the dryer, but I HATE HATE HATE to fold it and then put it away. This drives SK crazy, as he is usually the one that does the laundry, folds it and places it neatly on my side of the room, only to have it sit there for 3 weeks because I won’t put it away. Hee.

10.
I thank the heavens every day that I work in an office where jeans, an old college tshirt and my Converse are classified as “appropriate business attire.” I am so much more comfortable in this uniform than I would be all dressed up…that’s just not me.

There you go. 10 interesting things about me. Took me all day to come up with, but I think I’ve done a decent job. If you didn’t think they were interesting, you shouldn’t have read all 10 of them. So there.

Now to tag people:

Liz—Because I am so pumped that we have gotten back in touch this last year, and I SO love hearing about your life.

Heidi—Because with you too, I am super excited to have gotten back in touch, and I love the way you write and I love hearing your stories about your cute kids.

Karen—Because even though I read every. single. survey. you do, I can always use more Karen ;)

Chandra— Because this is going to be my sneaky way of getting you to start a blog, too ;)

Sarah— Because hello…of course I would tag you!

Leah—Because you are just too far away and are my MN BFF

Deborah—Because I have a feeling that your list of 10 weird things will be changing DRASTICALLY in the next few months and it’d be fun to laugh at these later ;)

Niki—Because I can only imagine what you’d put out there…

Elizabeth Ann—Because your life is so different from the last time I saw you!

Angie—Because really, it’s just been too damn long.

Gen—Because I KNOW some crazy stuff has gone down in San Marcos ;)


And yeah, I know that’s 11 people, but I don’t care.

January 10, 2008

Addendum

I’ve been schooled, ya’ll.

My aunt Cheryl called me the day after I posted the NJJ blurb and WENT OFF.

“You DO know that 4oz. of wine actually has about the same calories in it as a 12oz. bottle of light beer, right? And you DO know that 4oz. of hard liquor—wait, what kind of liquor do you drink?”

“Um…vodka?”

“RIGHT. A 4oz. shot of vodka has about the same calories as a 12oz bottle of light beer, too. They are all worth 2 points. I looked it up in Weight Watchers. JUST DRINK BEER.”

“Um…ok…”

“Oh, and also? The pork chops your mom made for New Year’s Day dinner? They were FRIED.”

Well, fuck.

While I can get over the pork chop thing—I plead ignorance! I didn’t know!—the wine/liquor vs. beer thing really threw me off. I have taken 2, yes 2, alcohol awareness classes thanks to MIP’s received on the river, one on the DAY before I turned 21 (thanks Officer DICK), so you would think I would know this. Actually though, I just knew that they all contained about the same amount of alcohol. Weirdly enough, alcohol awareness instructors don’t go into the caloric properties of the booze they are so enthusiastically educating you on.

So I relay this info to SK, who is the champion of the NJJ cause. He’s been doing it every January for years and swears by its detoxifying capabilities.

“Yeah, I know. You didn’t know that?”

“How the hell was I supposed to know that? So then why are wine and liquor ok?”

“Think about it—how much beer do we drink when we drink it?”

**I will not give my actual answer here, just know that even thinking about it now makes my liver shudder and throw up a little.

“Right. And how much wine or liquor do we drink when we go out?”

“Um, FAR less than that.”

So he told me to do the math. He knew that a bottle of beer has about the same calories as a shot or a small glass of wine, but we drink a hell of a lot more beer when we do drink it. Basically this month is about moderation, as well as eating healthier.

So to any of you that thought the same thing as my aunt when you read my post, there is the method behind it.

I have also been informed by NJJ King SK that this month all fast food is outlawed as well. No huge deal, except that now, in this moment, for the first time in my entire fucking life, I am craving a Big Mac. And a beer.

It’s day 10, people. I am in trouble.

January 4, 2008

No Junk January

So SK and I have started to realize that to lose the weight we’ve gained in the last 2 years since we’ve met, we’re actually going to have to change our eating and drinking habits.

WHAT?!

I know!!

So I welcome you to participate in No Junk January with us. Think of it as a sort of detox without ever having to consume any nasty chili powder/cranberry juice concoctions.

Here are the rules:

*No beer

*No fried food

Sounds simple, right? Well, that’s because on paper it is and that is exactly why it is BLOWING MY MIND. This is how normal people eat year round. I hadn’t realized how gross we were with the stuff we were putting into our bodies until I looked at the stuff I wasn’t allowed to put in anymore. Why would I want to in the first place?

Ok, well…let’s be honest now…a cold beer on a hot day is never going to sound like a bad or revolting idea to me. But I can certainly go a month without having one.

**It is important to note here that wine and liquor are not shunned during No Junk January, however, I am not going to consume either on week nights, and on weekends will only do so in moderation.

The fried food really won’t be too much of a challenge, which is happy and sad at the same time. Happy in the sense that I don’t regularly eat fried foods so good for me, and sad because that means that probably 98% of my weight gain is due to alcohol consumption. Sigh.

We’re doing well so far. We’re getting back into the habit of planning and making our dinners at home, rather than going out to pick something up or just throwing something together at the last minute. Although, even SK will admit, I did some pretty amazing things with plain white rice last week. I enjoy cooking, which is something I NEVER thought I would ever say, and when we have the groceries to do it, it’s nice.

NJJ technically started on Wednesday, Jan. 2, as we were both waaaaaaay too hungover from New Year’s Eve to consume anything on the 1st.

Wednesday for lunch I had a grilled chicken breast with steamed mixed vegetables and boiled cabbage, with water to drink. The deli in my office building is AWESOME. It’s all home cooked stuff and they’re really health-conscious so it’s good for you, too. Wednesday for dinner I made broiled salmon steaks with black bean salsa and grilled potato wedges. We drank Gatorade.


On Thursday morning, I felt healthier.


Thursday for lunch I had vegetable soup and some baked potato chips with bottled water, also from the deli at work. Last night I went by mom and dad’s and had dinner with them since SK was out late at a soccer game. We had pork chops, black eyed peas, dumplings with sauerkraut and mashed potatoes, all left over from New Year’s Day dinner mom made (and I missed, due to the hangover). Nothing fried, and mom doesn’t use any butter or oil in her cooking, so I am fairly certain that everything was pretty healthy. With the exception of the meal being loaded with carbs, it was still awesome. I drank water and brought food home to SK.


Today I could honestly feel a difference.


Today for lunch I had grilled catfish on rice and vegetables from the deli. I really need to start making my lunch and bringing it to work with me, but with the good food smells coming from down the hall, it’s tough.


I am not into resolutions, but I am trying to spend less money on frivolous things like deli lunch, and drink more water. I used to be so proud of my body and the way I looked, and now more often than not I hide underneath big sweaters. I always say I will start working out, but I am going to start this self makeover with baby steps this time.

No Junk January, I’m about to whoop your ass.

January 2, 2008

Winding Down

Christmas is over.

Christmas is over.

My God, how sad is that? It feels like I just put up our tree and just finished making (yes, I said making) ornaments to hang on it. Sigh. Where did it all go?

Chandra and I had an e-mail conversation the other day while at work, about how depressed we both were to take down Christmas. She and Kevin picked out a gorgeous real tree that they decorated in silver and red and one green ball for Bax, and going to their house and not seeing that big beautiful tree when I walk in the front door will break my heart a little. So you can imagine how much it sucked to take down mine.

I feel like I really got into Christmas this year. The decorating, anyway. We won’t get into my shopping angst. I swear I will try to be better about that next year, but next year is very very far away. But the decorating…well, just ask SK.

This is the first year I have had a place TO decorate at Christmas, though. True, we decorated the dorms and apartments that I lived in with roommates during college, but we were never THERE at Christmas and never did it big. Never have I had my own tree. Never have I had my own box of ornaments to decorate my own tree with. And never have I had my own box of Christmas decorations with which to decorate my home.

Our tree went up the weekend after Thanksgiving and, in my family, it is supposed to come down before the New Year starts. If your tree stays up into the new year, it is believed that you are bringing the baggage from the old year into the new one and that is pretty much just as bad as spitting on your g-ma at the dinner table. My family is very traditiony and superstitious like that.

SK and I debated on whether to buy a real tree or a fake one and ultimately went with fake. Nothing to water, minimal needle clean-up and the promise of a healthy looking green tree on December 31st. I had tree scented wall plug-ins from Bath and Body Works to substitute for the just-cut smell, and lots of other yummy smelling candles to make the apartment cozy. The day we put up the tree and started decorating, SK even built a fire. I am living with a MAN.

Decorating our apartment with decorations from my mom and his mom made me so happy. I thought I just might quit my job and do it full time. You know, the decorating. Our apartment would be very festive year-round. It’s a really good thing that we don’t have much horizontal space—just a dining room table, top of the tv and mantle—otherwise I would have gone really nuts. Most of the decorations that we had fit in the space we have, and the rest just had to stay in the boxes to hopefully see the glory that will be OUR HOUSE! at Christmastime next year.

I loved getting home in the evenings and walking into the dark apartment lit up just by the colored lights on the Christmas tree. Pulling into the complex, our apartment is one of the first that you see, and seeing the balcony glowing and the tree through the window just gave me such a sense of HOME. The same feeling I get when I walk into my mom’s house at Christmas, and I never expected to feel that way about an apartment we’d leased for a year.

The decorations are down now and the apartment is far less glowy and cozy feeling. There is still an imprint of the tree stand in the carpet. SK has pointed out how empty the living room looks. Bella is happy that she can once again lay completely stretched out in the sun that shines through the window, but I have even noticed her sniffing around the tree stand outline. Christmas, we miss you.

I’m already planning next year’s d├ęcor. December can’t come soon enough.

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