Friday, March 30, 2012

Quotable Quotes

"Tough times never last.  Tough people do."

"What doesn't kill you makes your stronger."

"This Too, Shall Pass."

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

I'm a Loser Baby!

A weight loser that is.  I started, really and truly started trying, to lose weight in November.  I signed up for Weight Watchers online and began working out more frequently.  And it worked...I was losing 2-3 pounds a week.  And as anyone who has struggled with weight loss can tell you there is no greater feeling than stepping on the scale and seeing that number decrease. 

And then the holidays hit.  And my father had a heart attack.  And spent a week in ICU.  And my family and I spent a week driving back and forth, spending the night in hospital chairs and eating whatever fast food was available to survive.  Needless to say, this derailed me. 

But after New Years I cracked back down.  I increased my workouts substantially because as anyone who's struggled with weight loss will tell you, your body gets comfortbale at certain stages and REFUSES to shed another ounce at times.  I signed up for Zumba classes two days a week and began going to the gym with friends two other days.  And it slowly started coming off again.  And I am proud to say I am down 20 pounds from when I started!

But each ounce, each pound is a vicious battle between me, food, my body and exercise.  It isn't easy.  There are days I just want a cupcake-or five.  Days that the sight of someone else consuming Dorito's make me drool and sigh longingly.  And there have also been days when I've broken down and had a cupcake.  And those days have kept me from going completely off the grid. 

My plan has been this.  I am on target and very strict with myself during the week.  The weekends?  I give myself a break.  It may take me longer to get all the weight I would like to off but I think my weekends have also kept me from going on an all out binge.  I'm not saying I go nuts and eat everything is sight but I usually eat out and generally get what I want, within reason.  But on Monday it's right back on track.

Another change?  No pop.  Or soda or cola or whatever you want to call it.  Only water or tea for me for two months.  Yes I may have had impure thoughts about a diet Coke last weekend at a restaurant.  But I have held firm.  Not only better for me but a lot cheaper too when eating out!

So for all those people thinking about losing weight or trying to lose weight out there-stick with it!  It can be done!  It's not easy and, if you love food like me, it's sure not fun. But here are a few tips/tricks etc to get you going or help you out:

1. Website. Ever.  This lady takes all sorts of normal, delicious recipes and "skinnys" them up.  She also gives you the nutritional info and Weight Watchers pts.  Everything I have tried from her has been great!  And usually quick and easy too.

2. You iPhone is your friend.  If you are WW-ing the iPhone app is great for tracking and looking things up on the go.  Even better for shopping?  The new bar code scanner which scans items on the spot and gives you points per serving.  If you are a non-WW there are lots of great calorie counting/fitness apps.  I have heard great things about My Fitness Pal, Lose It! and many others.  Some are even free.  I firmly believe that in order to lose weight you to count something-points, carbs, fat, calories-whatever you choose it makes you SO much more aware of what you are consuming.

3.  Find exercise you enjoy.  For me it's Zumba-I love it (and I say that about little to no forms of exercise).  I also enjoy walking outside, which is easier now that the weather is nicer.  It's much easy to keep up with a workout schedule if you like what you're doing.  And if you're like me and don't really like exercise at all (I think those people that say they love it are just flat out lying) find some workout buddies.  I am much more likely to go to the gym or walk if I have someone to do it with.

4.  Helpful hints food/drink wise: Drink LOTS of water.  You've heard it before but it cannot be said enough.  Green tea is also good and is a metabolism booster.  Protein shakes every now and then are a good bet.  And you are also supposed to eat something (something HEALTHY) within about 30 minutes of getting up.  It kick starts your metabolism for the day and as my metabolism is my constant enemy I need all the help I can get in that area.  Tons of fruits, tons of veggies, lean meats.  Avoid the carbs (which is SO hard for me as I love them!)

These are just some things that have worked for me or helped me.  I am by NO MEANS an expert or a dietitian or medical profession.  I will say this.  In my opinion there are no shortcuts.  No pills, or supplements or surgery (in some cases) will help if you are not committed to trying to lose weight and make some changes.  Because as soon as you are done with your magic cure the weight is coming right back.  Not to sound too Jillian Michaels-but you have to do the work.  And I will also say this.  It feels really, really great when all the hard work pays off and you lose even a few ounces.  Really great.

With that in mind I'm off to enjoy YET ANOTHER salad.  Yum.

Good luck to all the other losers out there!  If you've got any good tips, please, please share them here.  Every little bit helps and I'm always learning/trying new things.

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Filter Free

Have you ever wished that you could just say whatever you wanted?  That there was no filter that caused you to hold back your true thoughts and emotions to placate someone else, to keep the peace, and to keep everyone happy?  Boy, I do.  Nearly everyday of my life at some point.

And maybe this is because I tend to let things go by unsaid.  When someone hurts me or offends me or infuriates me my normal response is to cry to myself, complain to my friends and eventually let myself get over it.  And this is for a couple different reasons-
#1-I am not a fan of confrontation.  I prefer life to go on as drama-free as possible and that everyone gets along and is happy.  Naive, but how I like it.
#2-If forced to be in a confrontational situation I generally get so upset that I burst into tears.  Which only makes me madder.  And more upset.  Which makes me cry even harder.   About an hour later I think of some scathing replies. Which makes me mad all over again. It's a vicious cycle.

So pretty much everyday at some point I wish upon wish that I had the magical ability to say what I am really thinking and that, even more magically, there will be no repercussions.  That I could tell the person being rude to bite me.  That I could tell the person that always knows best, that is always superior, that is NEVER wrong to get a grip on reality and dismount their high horse.  That the person whose story is always worse, whose life is always harder could be told to shut up and for once let me have the worst day, the saddest story, the biggest problem.  That I could tell the person who hurt my feelings that they had done so and explain exactly why and how.  And on and on and on. 

Yes I know this verbal and emotional free for all would come with a price-likely losing all my friends, alienating everyone and being pretty much hated.  But wouldn't it also come with a wonderful kind of freedom?  That people might know what you REALLY think?  That they might take your thoughts and your feelings into consideration a little but more.  Maybe walk in your proverbial shoes.  Maybe even get a freaking blister from said shoes. 

It's a reoccurring thought I have from time to time-how satisfying it would be to just let it all go and say what you wanted.  Do I do it?  Very rarely...generally I just say it in my mind and bite my tongue.  Sometimes to the point of pain.  Which is stupid I guess but that's just the way I am.  And I figure, even if I try to remove my filter, that this is pretty much how I'm always going to be.

But gosh, it's nice to dream...

Monday, March 19, 2012


I wish I had some interesting and captivating thing to write about today.  Not so much.  It's Monday, I'm in a blah mood and at the moment waiting until I can get home and take a nap. 

Not exactly spine tingling stuff.  So maybe a quick run-down of what going on in my little world will suffice. 

#1-I am so excited for the Hunger Games movie it's a little embarrassing.  Everytime a trailer comes on I watch it (even though it may be for the millionth time) like I've never seen it before.  I re-read the books last week, staying up far later than was advisable and am just giddy with anticipation. If it is not as good as I hope it will be I may require psychiatric care.

#2-Spring has sprung-a little early for KY and it probably won't last but the mild winter, added to the unseasonably warm temps led to me having to freaking mow my yard this weekend.  Which led to the first snake sighting of the year-joy, joy.  My only consolation is that I beat my neighbor's on either side with the first to mow honors-a task which is nearly impossible and quite satisfying. 

#3-Rocking on repeat on the iPod of late?  Kelly Clarkson's "Makes You Stronger".  I am not ashamed to admit I have car danced while belting it at the top of my lungs.

#4-Our school board, in their infinite wisdom, allowed us to have our entire spring break-the first 3 days were originally taken for possible snow make-up days.  I am beyond excited by this and so ready for a break.  Now I'm just wishing I had someone to go or something exciting to do-I'll have to work on that.

And that's about all I have.   Perhaps inspiration will hit me soon and I will be back but for the moment enjoy your Monday-if such a thing is possible.

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Quotable Quotes

"Faith in God includes faith in His timing."
-Neal A. Maxwell

Seriously Funny:
"Everyone I know is getting married or pregnant.  I'm just getting more awesome."
-Barney from How I Met Your Mother

"Would I rather be feared or loved? Um...easy, both.  I want people to be afraid of how much they love me."
-Michael Scott from The Office

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Quotable Quotes

"I am the master of my fate: I am the captain of my soul."

-William Ernest Henley

Monday, March 12, 2012

Golden Moments

A lot of bad things seem to be happening lately.  Not just in the world, although of course the bad things happening there are too various to mention, but more particularly in my little corner of it.  In the last few weeks people I have known my whole life have passed away, family members have had surgery with more to come, tornadoes and storms have done damage in my hometown and destroyed others and dear friends are dealing with sick family as well.  And it's a little disheartening.  I told my mother the other night that for just awhile I would like everything to just be ok.  Not to expect each time I talk to someone to hear that someone else is sick or dying or in the hospital or whatever.  It would be a pleasant change of pace because thus far 2012 has kind of been a kick in the pants.  And I had high hopes for this year. 

But, as life often does, this weekend it reminded me that everything is not always gloom and doom.  Oh there's plenty of that, but there are also plenty of "golden moments" to remind us of the good, the fun and the joy.  And this weekend was full of them.  There was bad news and scary moments but the golden ones kept the balance. 

What's a golden moment?  It's those perfectly perfect moments that you wish could go on infinitely.  That make you think how perfect and blessed and good life can be.  For me they started Saturday morning at my late grandfathers auction.  What could have been a sad event actually turned out to be fun. It was a gorgeous day, I was with family and, as it turns out, kind of lose my mind a little at an auction.  Let's just say by the end of the event the auctioneer had my buyers numbers memorized.  I went home with an impressive haul and a bit of an adrenaline rush.  Cut to the afternoon spent with family watching the UK basketball game.  Everyone happy, for the moment ok and perfectly happy in each others company.  Golden Moment.

That evening I went out on the town with my group of friends from school.  We had fun, danced, laughed, sang along with the band and enjoyed ourselves beyond measure.  Memories were made, potential blackmail was witnessed and Golden Moments were experienced.

Cap off the weekend with what is, to me, one of life's great pleasures.  Rolling along on the road, windows down, radio blasting, singing along like it's my American Idol audition and the judges are very impressed.  Nothing is quite as beautiful as early spring in Kentucky and in that moment I found another Golden Moment.  Complete peace, contentment and joy in something so simple.

Because really, aren't the moments I've described what life is really all about?  The simple things, the friends, the family, the laughter, the joy in something silly.  They more than balance out the bad-they make is bearable and give you strength to face it.  They give you hope that things can in fact, be ok.  That life can go on and be absolutely beautiful.  Golden even. :) 

Thursday, March 8, 2012

No Sex in the Country

I considered, briefly and not too seriously, this post's title as the title to my entire blog.  Then my best friend suggested that this might not attract the most desirable set of readers.  Dang it.  It made me feel tres Carrie Bradshaw.  Which led me to write this post.

I feel like blogging about what I'm blogging about is somewhat along the line of Carrie's column in Sex and the City.  Real life.  For single girls-or any girls really-or anyone really.  And like Carrie, my best friends play a HUGE pivotal role in that life.  So I decided since it is inevitable that they will wind up in this blog, I should go ahead and introduce you.  I have decided to refer to them by the names of the SATC girls to maintain their anonymity.  And I get to be Carrie.  Because it's my blog.  (FYI-I totally would have married Aiden and never seen Mr. Big again. But that's for another day...)

So let's meet the cast shall we?

Samantha-my Samantha is not as...promiscuous (wasn't that tactful?) the actual one.  But there are elements of similarity in other traits.  She is the eldest in our group. She is very independent, opinionated and unafraid to let people know it.  She is the take charge type and is good at making plans and making said plans happen.  She is also kind, funny, fiercely loyal, sensitive and pretty much always there in a pinch.   She's always up for anything and has been in my whole life.  She'll be very happy I labeled her as a friend since I often tell her we are family, not friends.

Miranda-my Miranda is not as driven and harsh as the real one.  But she is driven.  And will work harder than hard and succeed at whatever she sets her mind too. And, like the real Miranda, is a little insecure about herself.  My Carrie is constantly frustrated by her less than accurate picture of herself.  She is my go to girl-and, in true Miranda fashion, will tell me like it is.  Even if I don't like it (I usually don't).  She funny, intelligent and always has my back. 

Charlotte-my Charlotte is not quite as prissy as the real one.  But she is seriously only about a step behind it.  Like Charlotte keeps the SATC girls grounded and traditional, so does my Charlotte.  She's the baby-but is often the mother hen.  She is the first to jump to your defence and the first to take your side. She longs for traditional things-marriage and babies.  And is the most likely to pull all of that off with the grace and poise of June Cleaver.  My Charlotte is far more practical and level headed than the original.  She's good in crisis, physical or emotional and is oozes sympathy in times of distress. 

And so that just leaves me...Carrie/Lindsay.  Pretty hard to write an analysis of yourself.  Am I like Carrie?  Probably somewhat.  When I was trying to match our personalities up to the SATC characters it was pretty easy.  We are, of course, quite different from them.  But the essential character traits and roles within the group are very similar.  So yeah, I guess I'm the Carrie.  Always ready to have some fun, even more ready to let a joke or sarcastic comment fly.  I love my friends and try to be there for them.  I, obviously, write.  I do not, however, purchase shoes that cost roughly the same amount as a mortgage payment.  And that's where Carrie and I differ.  I'm more practical and of course am not a fictional tv character.   :)

So there we have it-the cast.  Prepare to be entertained.

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Quotable Quotes-Reality

"Yeah some days it's a bitch, it's a bummer. 
We need a rock and roll show in the summer,
To let the music take us away. 
Take our minds to a better place. 
Where we feel that sense of freedom,
Leave our worries behind we don't need em',
All we need is a sunny day and old tailgate
And we'll escape,
Yeah sometimes life ain't all that it's cracked up to be. 
So let's take a chance and live this fantasy.
Everybody needs to break free-from reality."

-Kenny Chesney
(rocking this on the old iPod lately :)

Monday, March 5, 2012

No. I'm not married. Thanks for the reminder.

When discussing possible blog ideas this weekend with my friends one of them brought up a really good topic.  Her question was why, oh why, do people you run into that you haven't seen for awhile feel the need, within the first few moments of conversation, to ask if you're married.  Not if you have a career, or a home, or are happy or healthy, but if you're married.

We decided that this questions is asked for 1 of about 3 reasons:
#1-The people are generally curious or, more likely, just searching for conversation.  To those who fall into this category-you are pardoned.
#2-They are the type of person that considers this-husband and family-the ultimate goal in life.  This type is partially pardoned as their curiosity stems from a mindset, rather than malice.  I would suggest kindly they move their mindset into this century.
#2-They are asking because they already know the answer and hope to make you feel like crap because as they stand there smugly with their baby on their hip waiting for their husband to bring the car around they want to draw even more attention to the fact that they have won.  Mazel tov.  No pardon for you.

Now as any single girl out there knows, we don't really need a reminder that we are  single.  We know.  Chances are we would prefer not to be so people pointing it out, for whatever reason, doesn't really help matters. 

Which brought up the next point in our conversation.  Why, oh why, when someone asks this question and our answer is no do we immediately feel like failures?? 

Because that feeling of failure is absurd.  I have never been the type of person who feels like a woman needs a man to complete herself.  I am proud of the fact that I am independent, that I'd rather wait for the right man than to settle just so I can say I have one.  But when someone asks that question and I say no, I feel like I have failed.  Like I'm not doing what I should be or accomplishing anything.  It gave me some comfort to know my friends felt the same.  Because looking at us and thinking about our lives made that feeling of failure even more ridiculous. There we sat, a nurse and three teachers.  4 Bachelor's degrees, 3 Masters, a rank one and a partially completed nurse practitioner degree between us.  Home owners, car owners, bill payers, healthy, loved by family and friends.  And feeling like failures.

I think that feeling of failure makes me madder than the people asking that question.  Mad at myself for feeling that way.  Mad at society for making me feel that way.  Mad at the person who asked that question, 1 in 3 times, totally innocently that made me feel like a 28 year old failure.  All it makes me want to do is scream "I'm freaking trying here people!!!"

I read an article recently about etiquette for the technological age.  Do's and do not's of texting, tweeting, Facebooking etc.  There were some good points but the one thing that stuck with me the most was the idea of being sensitive to others when you post things.  Like  don't post 3,000 sonogram pics because maybe one of your FB friends is having trouble conceiving.  Or don't wax on for a page about your fabulous spouse and children, when someone else may have lost one, or be going through a divorce or whatever.  So I think I would give similar advice to all those matrimonial questioners out there.  Before you ask that question maybe take a look at our ring finger.  Chances are if it's empty, we aren't married!  Maybe start with where we're living, our job etc.  If we are married that will come up in the subsequent conversation.  No, the world at large is not responsible for handling my feelings with kid gloves, but wouldn't it be nice if we were all a little more socially sensitive?  Something to think about.

Friday, March 2, 2012

Happy Birthday Dr. Seuss!

In honor of Dr. Seuss' Birthday today my class will be dining on green eggs (sugar cookies decorated to look like them at least) and red fish in a blue jello ocean, reading "Oh the Places You'll Go" and other classics and watching "The Cat in the Hat".  And as Dr. Seuss obviously had quite a way with words I thought I would share some of his best quotes today.  Here are a few of my favorites!  (My favorite Seuss character?  Horton!  I love that loyal pachyderm :)

"Be who you are and say what you mean.  Because those who mind don't matter and those who matter don't mind."

"Unless someone like you cares a whole awful lot, nothing is going to get better.  It's not."

"You have brains in your head.  You have feet in your shoes. You can steer yourself any direction you choose."

"A person's a person; no matter how small!"

"Today you are you, that is truer than true.  There is no one alive who is youer than you."