Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Stuff To Always Make Time For

Another thing I did this weekend was read.  I have a stack of magazines on my nightstand and I wanted to at least read two of them (I got one done).  

This month's Redbook had a great article that sang to me.  Since becoming a mom 16 months ago, I find it hard to make time for "me" things.  And I'm not talking like spa days or mommy shopping trips, I'm talking about menial tasks like checking my personal email or putting something away properly (i.e., if there is something that has to go upstairs or in another room, I make a pile and say "I'll go put that away later," and it never gets done!)….everyday things.  It's kind of amazing that I can't get that kind of stuff done, but I can't…or don't.  

So when I was paging through my Redbook I came across the article, "Stuff To Always Make Time For … No Matter How Busy You Are" (article linked here) and instantly perked up.  All of the items on the list I either already do or was like "oh yeah, I need to do that."  So I'm making this a "thing" and I'm going to try and live by it.

1)  Lay out your gym clothes at night - Yes!  Make your life and your morning easier.  They say that if your gym shoes are staring you in the face when you wake up, it's hard to not workout (heh).  This is something I always do because the last thing I need to be doing is fumbling for socks while Hubs and Jillian are sleeping.  I put all of my clothes in the bathroom so that I can get up, brush my teeth and get dressed for my workout.  Lately I've been uber lazy about working out, but once I get back on track, this is something that will always happen.

2)  Make your bed - There's just something nice about having a made bed.  The article says it sets you up for your day with one accomplishment checked off your to do list.  Nice.  We have one of those beds with 1000 pillows on it, so I have to make it everyday or else I have 1000 pillows on the floor - which is even worse than an unmade bed.  I have actually built it into my routine.  After my shower, while my hair dries, I make the bed, hang up clothes, straighten up the closet and do stuff like that.  On those rare days the bed doesn't get made at our house, it just feels a little off.  

3)  Moisturize - You should moisturize day and night.  I wear an SPF everyday and it's built into my moisturizer so this is a big yes.  I don't do it at night as much, but I should!  Right now I really like Cera Ve AM and PM lotions.

4)  Take a lunch break - It's good for your mind and your mood!  On days when I am in the office I always make it a point to try and get out of the office, even if its just to drive around a little bit (and get out of the frigid building). But some days I just can't leave and those days are loooong and when I walk out of the office I feel like I have been in a cave all day.  So taking a lunch break, away from my computer is definitely needed. 

5)  Drink H2O - Yeah, I've been so bad about this lately (I blame Diet Coke for this).  And it's such an easy one to do!  Everyone knows that water is good good good and the article says that it does wonders for concentration.  

6)  Give a compliment - This is a mood booster for the compliment giver.  Think of how nice you feel when you get a compliment - it feels even better when you give one.  I gotta do this more often.

7)  Set up a no phone zone - I have done this recently.  I used to live in my phone in the evenings while we were watching TV or chilling.  It's amazing what you miss when you're buried in your phone.  So I keep it up on the counter now and use it only when I need it - at the counter.  I don't bring it down to the couch because it's an attention suck, and Jillian likes to steal it and stick it in her mouth, which is probably not good, huh?

8)  Be social - The article says people who lack social connections suffer from risk factors equivalent to about 15 cigarettes a day. What?!  They don't say "go out with your friends every night" or anything like that, they say just reaching out to someone to say hi, or see how they are doing is a good step.  This makes me want to take things one step further and actually see my friends more often.  We don't get together nearly as often as we used to.  Life is busy and it's hard to find time, but we need to make it a point to do it, because friends are the best.  

I was going to insert a girl group picture here but couldn't find any taken in the last year … that is a bad sign, right?

And that's it.  Pretty simple stuff - nothing earth shattering, but it's things that I do sometimes and sometimes I don't.  I am going to try and make it point to life by these rules and see what a difference it makes.

How about you … Are these easy rules to live by?  Do you do these?

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Short Week

Hi there! Happy day-after-a-long-Memorial-Day-weekend. If you work, this is a day of mourning because coming back to work after a nice long weekend always sucks. 

We had a fun, but leisurely weekend. Here's what occurred (in no particular order):

- Went to the park (not a Disney park, a real park)

- Watched movies 

OMG, I loved this movie so much.  It was a little slow (and odd) in the middle, but I just loved the ending.  

Funny.  Very funny.

- Had a play date/BBQ with friends.  I don't think Jillian stopped giggling and squealing the whole time her little friend was over.  She loved it!  

- Ate lots of hamburgers

- Spent lots (and lots) of money at Target (Side note: I love Target so much. I spend a majority of my paycheck there. And when I say that, I mean it.  Where else can I buy bras, diapers, bread and potting soil all in one outing?  I LOVE TARGET.)

- Had family time with my in-laws at a BBQ on Monday. (Another side note: my parents left on a 7-day cruise on Royal Caribbean's Allure of the Seas this weekend. I am so jealous I could die, it looks amazing.)

I still haven't been feeling 100% great tummy-wise, so I took it easy with the holiday eating this weekend. This also means I didn't do a lick of exercise either. Bah!!! I was going to at least go out for a long walk this morning (since I'm not sure a bunch of T25 jumping is a good idea right now), but it didn't happen. I need to go back and read this post and take my own advice. 

I have a super short week at work this week because we leave for Sanibel on Friday!! I am super excited. I can't wait to see how Jillian does on the beach and at the pool. She has a whole wardrobe of bathing suits and adorable beach outfits (hence me breaking the bank at Target) and we bought her a float for the pool, so we are ready to rumble! 

Test run
Alright, that's all I've got from over here. Here is hoping I can muster up a little energy to work out a time or two before Sanibel, or else I might be rocking my beach cover up on the beach! Oh well, at least I'll have a killer (fake) tan!! 

How about you ... How was your Memorial Day weekend? Any good plans for the week? 

Friday, May 23, 2014

Hello, Summer

Well, I was right when I said I thought I was coming down with something.  I spent most of yesterday in the bathroom (sorry, TMI) and just felt weak, tired and not hungry in the least bit.  I ate 10 Ritz crackers over the course of the day and that is it.  I obviously was not well, because me not eating is total insanery.  I feel much better today, although my appetite is still not back, bleh. 

Jillian is much, much better.  She’s back to her usual happy self and acts as if nothing ever happened.  Good, let’s keep it that way.  I never want her to get sick again…ever. 

OK, we’re doing bullets today because I have a bunch of random thoughts in my head right now…

- It’s Memorial Day weekend!  The unofficial start of summer!  Woo!  Apparently Mother Nature got the memo, because it’s going to be in the high 90s this weekend in Orlando – 97 on Saturday.  Ugh, hello Florida summer.

- I got a coupon from Ulta today for a FREE OPI nail polish.  Free OPI?  That’s like a $9 value!  It made my day.  I will be marching to Ulta today at lunch to get my freebie nail polish.  "Bright Lights Big Color" is on my list! 

- I cannot get Ed Sheeran's "Sing" out of my head.  OMG, love it.

- The office today is deserted and I love it.  Apparently the day before Memorial Day weekend is a big vacay day.  I call it a great “catch up” day where I can get lots of sh—done! 

- For giggles, I got on the scale this morning and I lost 4 pounds since the last time I weighed myself over a week ago.  I know I shouldn’t be happy about that considering I was sick all day yesterday, but … it kind of made me smile. 

- I am out of shampoo, so I used some of Hubs’ Head and Shoulders – my hair has not looked this good in a long time.  Seriously, I may have to start using this regularly.

- I haven’t worked out all week – meh.  The first part of the week was devoted to Jillian and only Jillian.  The second half of the week was just me being lazy, well and yesterday I just couldn’t.  I am hoping to at least go on a walk tomorrow.  Something.

- We don’t have fun Memorial Day weekend plans, but next weekend we are leaving for our annual trip to Sanibel Island!  (<-- I didn't know it yet, but I was pregnant in that post)  We go every summer, with the exception of last year when Jillian was just a little baby, and this year I am so excited to have Jillian there.  She is going to love the beach.  She already did a test run at Clearwater beach with my parents.

- Because we are going to Sanibel next week, I booked my next spray tan!  I am super duper excited because even after our Keys vacation I am still see through pasty white and it's just...bad. 

Alright, I think that’s all I’ve got in me.  Have a wonderful holiday weekend!!! 

How about you … Any good plans for the weekend? 

Thursday, May 22, 2014

Getting Back to Normal

Hi – sorry I have been a little quiet lately.  It’s been a crazy couple of days.

I have been extremely fortunate as a parent.  In the 16 months that Jillian has been on earth she has been sick zero times.  Zero.  Never a runny nose, never a fever, we are extremely blessed.  On Sunday, however, that streak ended and we ended up in the ER.  Thankfully, in the end, it was just a very high fever (104 – eek) and she is much better today, but good God, I was hysterical.  HYSTERICAL.  There is literally  nothing worse than not knowing what is wrong with your kid.  Hysterical.

So for the last couple of days, life has kind of been on hold, but now things are getting back to normal.  Although now I feel like I am coming down with something.  Yippee.

Just wanted to check in and let you know that I haven’t fallen off the face of the earth.  I will return to normal blogging activities soon! 

Hope your week is going great!!

Friday, May 16, 2014

Name Your Favorite ...

Happy Friday! 
I heard on the radio this morning that today is Janet Jackson's birthday, so in honor of that I am rocking the Janet Jackson Pandora station at my desk.  It is fabulous.
Since it's Friday, and I have no more creative juices flowing, I thought I would do something fun.  I saw one of those fun little surveys on Courtney's blog and thought I would follow suit - because who doesn't love a fun survey on a Friday?  Here we go.
Name Your Favorite....
Person – Jillian
Color – Coral
Food – Pizza... Or cookies
Smell – Jasmine when it's in bloom, but I don't like jasmine scented things. Weird right? 
Book – Water for Elephants
Movie - Romancing the Stone - OMG, I can recite pretty much every word to that movie I love it so much.

Time of day – When I go in and see Jillian for the first time in the day - I love seeing that smile in the morning!

Day of the week – Saturday
Thing to do when bored – Read
Celebrity – George Clooney. Have I mentioned I'm devastated he's off the market? 
Drink – Diet Coke (I know...)
TV show – So many to name... But right now I'm loving Total Divas (because I'm a supreme geek)
Fruit – Bananas
Vegetable – Green beans
Store/shop – Target - it has everything!
Workout – T25!!!
Potato chip flavor – Plain?  Do Cheetos count?  Because I love those so much.
Meal of the day – Dinner
Ice cream flavor – Vanilla - I know boring.
Season – Spring
Dessert – Apple cobbler with vanilla ice cream ...Or cookies
Lifehack – What's a lifehack?
How about you ... Gimme a couple of your answers to the above.

Thursday, May 15, 2014

Exercise is GOOD

I got back on the workout wagon this week and man, do I feel better.  

I hadn't worked out since vacation almost two weeks ago because I was just super lazy and didn't feel like getting out of bed to workout (dumb).  And by the end of last week I felt sluggish and just icky.  I knew this week I had to do something to remedy this.

I started back on my T25 workouts this week and man do I feel good.  Exercise is just good.  It's good for your body, it's good for your mind, your mood, stress, it's just a great thing.  And when I come back to exercise after being away for a while I always wonder why I stopped doing it.  

I know I say this a lot because I waver on exercise all the time - sometimes I'm all in and gung-ho and then sometimes life just gets in the way and it doesn't happen.  I just need to remember how it feels to complete a workout during those times where I'm wavering on getting up and working out (that's the hardest part when your alarm is going off and you are snug in bed).

I've been thinking about the type of exercise I do a lot lately.  As you know, I used to be a runner.  That's what I did for exercise, I ran and walked, that was it.  But over time my exercise tastes have changed and now running isn't the center focus, which is okay.  For me, I feel like getting a more overall workout is better for me right now, which is what T25 is doing for me - I get crazy cardio and strength training all in a cute little 25-minute package.  I burn more calories and get my heart rate up way higher in those 25 minutes than I ever did on an hour long run (cuz I run so slow), so that is good.  

I am going to get back to running, because I miss it.  I read a lot of running blogs, and hearing people going for a "long run" makes me miss that a little bit.  So, that's on the docket, eventually.  And I do have my next half marathon in sight - the Celebration Half Marathon in January.  Hello, Celebration, my favorite running place ever?  Sign me up!  

Alright, that's all I've got.  Just wanted to share with you my thoughts on exercise and getting back in the saddle.  

How about you… Do you ever get in an exercise funk?  How do you get out of it?  Do you run?

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Vacay Recap Part 2 - Key West

Hey hey!  Sorry it took me a while to get the rest of my vacay recap up.  I’m sure you were all dying to know and were losing sleep over it.  Hee.

So where did we leave off?

Southernmost point.  Yes. 

Hubs and I stayed at the Southernmost Hotel, which was a splurge, but super worth it.  The hotel was a beautiful boutique hotel on the quiet end of Duval Street and literally a minute’s walk to the ocean (or is it the Gulf?).  Once we checked in we immediately started walking Key West to get our bearings.

The main drag in Key West is Duval Street, which extends from the Atlantic Ocean to the Gulf of Mexico, which sounds long, but it’s actually less than a mile.  We stayed at the North end, the Atlantic Ocean end (I had to look it up – yay Wikipedia) and it was nice to be a little bit away from the hullaballoo that can be Duval Street.  Once Hubs and I got the obligatory picture taken at the Southernmost Point marker, we started walking towards the fun side of Duval. 

I got lots of steps in on my pedometer during our stay in Key West because we literally walked up and down Duval like 5 or 6 times, so I didn’t feel too bad about the slushy alcoholic drinks I imbibed in while there (it was hot, and they were refreshingly delicious). 

Miami Vice - half pina colada, half strawberry daiquiri, all yum
About half way to the Gulf, we decided to hop aboard the Conch Train, which is a guided tour around Key West.  I’m totally a tour kind of girl – I like to hear about the history of a city and see everything while someone is pointing out exactly what it is.  It just makes me feel like I saw the city.  So we rode the conch train around the city for a couple of hours and then hopped off on the Southern end of Duval and meandered our way back to our hotel, stopping in at the shops and restaurants along the way.  And of course we hit up the Hard Rock for Hubs.

Tropical Hard Rock

By the time we got back to the hotel we were hot, sticky and exhausted, so we took a dip in the pool and lounged for the rest of the evening. 

Thursday we decided would be a lounge by the pool kind of day, so that’s exactly what we did.  We took a walk in the morning and then chilled at the “Tranquility Pool” for the afternoon.  And on the way we ran into this guy.

Yeah, that’s a giant iguana just hanging out in the tree.  Apparently giant iguanas live in Key West and are considered “normal” there.  I saw two and nearly jumped out of my skin each time I saw them.  They were like the size you see in a zoo.  That’s not okay.  Even if it is paradise.  No thank you. 

Back to paradise… 

It was HOT.  I spent a couple of hours in the sun and when I couldn’t take it anymore I moved it to the shade for the remainder of the day.  Had I stayed out in the sun, I probably would have been burnt to a crisp.  So I was smart.  But now, looking at my pasty white skin I’m kind of wishing I had given it a more substantial go.  Oh well.

That evening we decided to party it up on Duval.  The plan was to walk to the fun side of Duval and get dinner and drinks and see the sunset and have a gay ol’ time.  We were both STARVING when we got to dinner at Fogarty’s, an outdoor restaurant along Duval, and, well, we ate entirely too much food for two human beings and were completely miserable. 

We walked down to Mallory Square for the sunset festivities, poked into Hog’s Breath Saloon and Sloppy Joe’s but were too full to drink anything fun, went to Fat Tuesday where Hubs had a 180 Octane (I was too full for anything) and we ended up meandering our way back to the hotel.  And even though I was  so full, I had to buy one of the "cookies the size of your head" that they had at a bakery called Mattheessen's.  I ate it the next day in the car.  

Friday morning we woke up bright and early and headed home.  It’s an 8 hour journey home, believe it or not, so we made two stops on the way home.  One was at the Hard Rock Hotel and Casino (of course) in Hollywood – which was beautiful.  Wow.  We spent an hour just roaming around there, doing a small amount of gambling (I spent a whopping $7) and having lunch. 

About two hours later we needed to stretch our legs so we decided to stop at an outlet mall just outside of Ft. Meyers.  We walked the entire length of that puppy and I ended up with a shiny new pair of my running shoes (Adidas Supernova Glides) since mine had a hole in them leftover from my February half marathon.  We got to my parents’ house around 7:30 and were reunited with this cutie pie. 

"Where ya been?"
All in all, great trip.  We had a nice time, we saw a couple of places we’d never seen before, it was relaxing and just a good time all around!

How about you … Ever been to Key West?  Thoughts?  

Thursday, May 8, 2014

A Gift at My Door

Mother's Day came early yesterday - I got my second Stitch Fix!! 

I have been waiting for my next Fix, well, since my last one back in March!  I was super duper excited to get my box of fun and was a little worried when it looked a little dinky.

Luckily for me, it was filled with some good stuff!  

Pay no attention to my hair or lack of makeup (or horrendous camera work) - it's a work from home day and I'm not fancy.  

I really liked the pieces I got.  I started off trying on the coral colored top.  I liked the concept, but it's already in the 90s here in Florida and I know I am not going to be wearing a long or three-quarter sleeved shirt for a while, so this was a no.  Although I did try it on twice contemplating it.

The second top I tried on I knew I would love.  I love anything sleeveless, and this blue top was interesting.  It looks like a wrap shirt, but it's not.  It criss crosses in the front, but it's also flowy, it's really different and looked good on.  Keeping it!  

The third item was the black and white chevron maxi skirt.  I love the concept of a maxi skirt, but I know I would never wear this.  And the material was really thin and would probably require Spanx, which I cannot even deal with.  So this was a no.  

Next was the cargo shorts.  I was a little worried about the pants given the horrible experience I had with the jeans they sent last time.  But these fit and they were flattering and cute.  A little shorter that I would normally wear, but I'm ready to rock my legs.  Why not.  I'm leaning towards keeping them but I'm going to sleep on it because they are a tad pricy for shorts.  

Last was the earrings.  OMG, love at first sight.  I love them.  But… I have about 300 pairs of earrings and these were $48 - which is about 4x more than I would ever be willing to pay for earrings (unless they were like diamonds or something), so I had to part with these.  Sniffle.

Overall, happy with my Fix.  I'm going to go and schedule another one pronto.  I don't want to wait another month and a half.  It's like Christmas when that box arrives at my door!!  

How about you … Have you tried Stitch Fix yet?  

Vacation Recap - Part One

Sorry, this week has been ridiculous and I have had no time to put together a good vacay recap. 

I just finished up a big project and decided to “reward” myself by taking a few minutes to blog.  Yeah, my idea of “reward” is strange,  I know.

As you know, last week Hubs and I took a quick little getaway.  We hadn’t had a vacation since our anniversary back in October, so we figured before the summer got out of control hot we’d make a quick getaway somewhere beachy and enjoy some down time.  So we decided to go somewhere we’d never been – the Keys!  We have both been to Key West on cruises, but never got to spend adequate time there. 

We set off on Monday and made our way down to Miami. 




We had to stop at the Miami Hard Rock, since Hubs is a collector of the Hard Rock pins.  It was nice to stop and get of the car, have lunch, stretch our legs after 4 hours in the car.  And yes, I did make a playlist for the car that included “Miami” by Will Smith.  Cuz I’m geeky like that.

About 2 hours later we made it to our first destination – the Hilton Key Largo Resort.  (yes, “Key Largo” by Bertie Higgins was also on my playlist)



It was a beautiful hotel!!  (and it was FREE with my Hilton points!)  It was a lovely mix of woods and beach.  There were trees and trails everywhere, it was so pretty. 




The beach was pretty sparse, but it was a beach and it was glorious.



After we checked in, we spent the evening just putzing around the hotel and town.  There’s not much going on in Key Largo, but we did get a light dinner (since we had a big lunch at Hard Rock) and just chilled. 

Tuesday morning we woke up and decided to go to the gym.  The gym looked really nice, and I haven’t been to a gym since like last August (really!), so we decided to start our day off the right way.  It was nice, and made me miss my gym.  Afterwards, we enjoyed breakfast on our balcony and then made our way down to the beach. 



It was lovely.  The resort was not crowded at all, which made it even nicer, and we were actually the only people at the pool. 



That evening we decided to drive to Islamorada to check up what was happening there (not much).  We did manage to find a Shula’s restaurant, so we had to stop and eat.  Shula’s is a really swanky steakhouse here in Orlando.  We’ve been a couple of times and its wicked expensive, so we don’t frequent it very much, but when we saw that there was one in Islamorada our mouths started watering.  This particular one was a “Shula’s 2” which is a less expensive version, but we still managed to spend $100 on steaks.  Eh, it was vacation.

That evening we watched the sunset and just chilled out around the hotel.

Wednesday morning we woke up and did the gym and breakfast on the balcony again and then got packed up and made our way to our second destination – Key West – which was about 2 hours away.

The drive was beautiful and peaceful, but we were ready to get out of the car when we hit Duval Street.  We stayed at the Southernmost Hotel, named for its close proximity to the southernmost point in the USA. 




Another hotel winner.  It was a huge complex and we had access to our hotel and the Southernmost On The Beach complex – lots of pools, beach access, fun stuff.

Alright, this is getting pretty heavy with content and photos, so I am going to continue with our Key West adventures tomorrow.  Sound good? 

How about you … Have you ever been to the Keys?

Monday, May 5, 2014

Back to Real Life

Hey hey happy Cinco de Mayo! 

It's back to real life over here - meh. I love vacation but coming back to regular life is always hard. Thankfully we had the weekend at home to get back into the swing of things, so that made the transition a little easier. But coming back to work this morning - sheesh. 

I’m going to do a vacation recap with pics later this week, so for today, since I’m still trying to get back into the swing of things, I thought I’d just do a bullet post with a bunch of randomness.  K?

-  Jillian went to her first birthday party this weekend.   It was held at My Gym and she had a blast.  This picture pretty much sums up her mood at the party.

-  The new season of 24 starts tonight!!!!  JACK BAUER!

- For those wondering, I am still tan.  I got my spray tan on April 26th and I’m still sporting a nice glow.  Not sure if that is spray or if that is actual tan I got from vacay – I’m guessing it’s spray since I wore SPF 10,000 and sat in the shade a majority of the time.

Faux glow
- Hubs and I visited the hotel gym at our hotel in Key Largo twice on vacation (we walked everywhere in Key West, so we didn’t visit the gym there).  You know I am typically not a travel worker outer (Hubs is the opposite, he only works out when we are on vacation – weird), but I was super happy to be reacquainted with an elliptical machine and a treadmill last week.  I missed them both.

- As a result of said time spent on the elliptical and treadmill, I read an entire book in 2 days.  I never read that fast, there isn’t time!  Apparently workouts and hours and hours lying in a lounge chair will afford you that luxury.  I read Nancy Thayer’s Island Girls – a total beach read. 

- Chick Fil A changed their grilled chicken sandwich.  WHY?!?!  (you can find out here) It was so good before.  It’s still good, but not like it used to be.  Meh.   

And that’s all from me.  Tonight we are celebrating Cinco de Mayo by eating my dad’s famous enchiladas.  Can’t wait!

How about you … Are you doing anything festive for Cinco de Mayo?  Is anyone going to watch 24: Live Another Day tonight?

Friday, May 2, 2014

On the Way Home

Our tropical vacay is coming to a close. We are on our 8-hour journey back home, and not a moment too soon, I miss this girl... 

She's been having a vacation of her own at Grandma and Grandpa's house. It doesn't look like she misses us too much because she's been having a blast at the beach, the pool, etc. I cannot wait to see her! 6 hours and counting....