Thursday, December 31, 2015

2016 Theme: DO

It's New Year's Eve and it's that time to start thinking about what I want to accomplish in the new year. I know lots of people scoff at making New Year's Resolutions, but I rather like them. I'm very Type A and love making lists and checking things off and all that jazz, so resolutions are right up my alley. 

Over the last couple of months I have been listening to the Happier podcast with Gretchen Rubin, author of The Happiness Project (a book that I vow to finish in 2016), and she's given some good insights into making good resolutions and one thing she suggested really resonated with me. She suggested picking one word to be your theme for the year. I kind of love this, because as soon as she said that I immediately knew what my word was going to be. 


There is much I want to DO on a given day, but sometimes it just doesn’t happen due to laziness, other demands or whatever.  And there are times where I’m literally sitting doing nothing, saying to myself “I should be doing this or that...”  Or things - like organizing closets or cleaning out junk drawers - that I’ve been meaning to do and know in the back of my mind I need to do, but I push it off to do something else, or nothing at all.  It can be frustrating, because, why am I pushing it off?  Why can’t I just do it?  So my theme of the year is going to be DO. Just do it.



Thanks Shia LaBeouf.  What happened to that guy!?

So that covers the theme of DO.  And then as far as “resolutions” or “goals” or whatever you want to call them, I’m being super vague about them this year.  Normally it’s things like “eat healthier” or “workout more” - which I never pay attention to.  So this year I’m going more vague (which is the opposite of what Gretchen says to do - she says be more specific like instead of saying eat healthier, say I’m going to eat vegetables every night, or something like that).  So things like:

- Be consistent.  
- Be present.
- Be better.
- Keep track.

I have a better chance of hitting all those goals.  So that’s the plan.  

HAPPY NEW YEAR!

How about you ... What’s your plan for 2016?  Do you make resolutions?

Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Starting Early

After a month of ridiculous eating - Christmas cookies, cookie dough, more pizza than I care to mention, etc etc - and minimal exercise (pretty sure I worked out only once or twice the entire month), I knew that I needed to make a change. Stat. I hadn't gained any weight (amazingly) but I just felt bleh and not right. In addition to feeling icky and soft and full all the time, I was also moody and weepy and just not right.  I get crazy when I don't exercise, like legit crazy.  


My normal mentality at this time of year is "eh, just wait until January 1st for that 'clean slate' to begin." But why wait? I felt like I couldn't wait - for my sanity. 


So the morning after Christmas I laced up, cued up an episode of Serial and I was off. 

My plan was to walk more than run (ease into it, because, ya know) and to get as close to 3 miles as possible. I hadn't gone that distance in a while (since the Turkey Trot on Thanksgiving), so it felt like a good place to be. Plus I have that pesky 10K next week, so I should probably build up some sort of mileage base, huh?

The verdict? BEST thing I did for myself all week! There is just something about endorphins. I neeeeeeed them. My mood has changed significantly, I feel better/fitter (even though I'm not working all that hard) and I'm just happier overall. Hooray for exercise! 


I did 2.75 miles on Saturday, 2.85 miles on Sunday, 2.5 miles on Monday (less because I went a different way thinking it would be more, and I miscalculated, oopsie), took a "rest day" (comical term considering, again, I'm not working that hard) on Tuesday and then did a short 1 mile loop this morning because I was a little strapped for time. 

All in all - fabulous! Now I just need to make a pact with myself to keep it up. Because, seriously, exercise is obviously necessary to my sanity and is a major part of my life that I need. So, 2016 is going to be the year of consistency for this gal. 

Love this!

But more on 2016 stuff later ...

How about you ... Did you have the post holiday blues? Does exercise help your mood? 

Tuesday, December 29, 2015

Christmas Stuff

Hello there! It's the week after Christmas - aka, the weirdest week of the year. You know what I'm talking about - the house looks like a tornado went through it because of all the new Christmas presents (100% true when you have a kid), you're kindasorta working (but not really motivated because everyone else is out) and it's a short week because of the next holiday. I think this entire week should just be made a national holiday to avoid the weirdness. Yes? 

Our Christmas was so great so I thought I would give you some of the highlights. 

Family 


We are so lucky to have our families live close to us. And we are even luckier that we can all get together as one big family for all of the holidays. It's the best. 

Cookies


Here is something I thought I'd never say: I am so freakin tired of cookies. I have been baking and eating Christmas cookies for what seems like the entire month of December and I am SO SICK of them. January 1st they all go into the garbage. But, we had a blast making them! 


Gifts


don't mean to sound Scrooge-y, but next year I am telling everyone they are limited to giving Jillian only two gifts. She received so much stuff from family and Santa that we are going to have to move to a bigger house! But she had an absolute blast opening gifts this year. She's finally at an age where she gets it, which is so cool!!!



Her favorite is Take Care of Me Lambie. Future doctor here. 



Since gifting is most of the time about the giving, I think Hubs and I won for best gift given. Because our parents are such a huge and wonderful help to us, and because they are just so darn great, we wanted to get them something that said a massive thank you. So we decided to take them all on the Disney cruise later this year. (!!!!) As you can imagine, it was a surprise, and a hit!! Everyone is super excited to set sail later this year! Er, next year (2016). 



All in all it was a fantastic Christmas. And it wasn't just limited to the days of Christmas, we really partied it up all month! Like at the Osbourne lights: 





In ugly Christmas sweaters (got to wear this on the ONE cold day in December )



Meeting Santa at Epcot 





Going to the Children's Nativity Pageant at Church (Jillian wanted no part of going into the sanctuary, so she watched from the vestibule and tried on costumes)






Maybe next year she'll want to be part of the play. 

And just being a family during the most wonderful time of the year. 







I hope everyone had a fantastic holiday!!

Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Monday, December 21, 2015

What I’m Watching, Listening To and Reading

Hi there! Happy Christmas week! Hopefully your shopping is done and you're ready to rumble! I still have a bunch of stuff to do, but I have three full days to do it, so I'm hopeful! 

Thought I'd spend a little time talking about some things that I've been watching, listening to and reading.  Because hey, sharing is caring, right? 

Watching

Star Wars: The Force Awakens



Like pretty much everyone in the universe,  we saw Star Wars this weekend and WOW!  WOWO!  WOWEE!!  It was amazingly spectacular and just everything I wanted it to be.  So freakin fantastic.  I can’t wait to see it again, and then like 9 more times after that.  Seriously.

Breaking Ground - WWE Network


If you have been reading this blog for any amount of time, you know that we are wrestling fans. Yeah, I know. Don't judge.  I’m sort of enthralled by how professional wrestling works.  I mean, we all know it’s fake and it’s predetermined, but how does it all work?  How do they train for this?  Breaking Ground is a documentary-style show that goes into just this.  Narrated by William Shatner, it follows the stories of many of the wrestlers who are part of the developmental program, NXT at the WWE Performance Center in Orlando.  It’s super interesting and shows all of the crazy athleticism pro wrestlers have to go through to make it to the main WWE roster.  I strangely love it and can’t wait to watch it each week.

Listening

Serial 



I finally jumped on the Serial bandwagon.  I know, I’m late, and there’s a brand new season already going, but I’m about 4 episodes into season 1 (Adnan Syed) and, wow, it’s good.  I have to be in the mood for it though.  Usually the podcasts I listen to are happy go lucky and mindless listening.  With Serial I really need to listen and pay attention.  And it’s dark, so I have to be in the mood for that.  But so far, I am loving it.  For those who also haven’t jumped on the Serial bandwagon, Serial tells the story of a real life murder case involving the death of a Maryland teen Hai Min Lee and the case surrounding the man who was convicted of the murder, her ex-boyfriend, Adnan Syed.  It’s really interesting to hear how the case unfolds and all of the doubt on whether or not Adnan, who is currently in prison for the murder, actually did it.  It’s really interesting.  One thing, though, that annoys me about it - the music.  Those piano interludes kill me.

Reading

Winter Street by Elin Hilderbrand



I’ve been in a book funk lately.  I’ve read some good ones this year, but then kind of stalled out, so I picked The Happiness Project up again and began reading that again.  But then I got bored.  I feel like I’m reading a text book when I’m reading that, for some reason, and that defeats the purpose of reading for fun (especially when the only time I really read is right before bed).  I needed something mindless and fun, so I went with a holiday themed book by Elin Hildebrand (one of my faves) called Winter Street, which is about a family that owns a Nantucket Inn and how their Christmas shakes out.  It’s really good and puts me in the Christmas mood.  

And that’s all I’ve got for this go around of What I’m Watching, Listening To and Reading.  Exciting, right?  

Hope your Monday is going swell!  

How about you ... What are you watching, listening to and reading?


Friday, December 18, 2015

Happy Friday

It’s FRIDAY!  And even better, I am officially done with work for the holidays!  Hooray!

There is still a crap ton of stuff to do before the holiday, but at least I don't have to think about work while trying to wrap up all of the holiday stuff.  

So here's a little Friday randomness to get you through the day...

Hubs' B-Day
Today is Hubs' birthday!!  He's super old today (hee, I kid) and we're celebrating by doing some Star Wars related things (not the movie though, that's tomorrow night) and finishing our Christmas shopping.  Fun times.  Happy birthday to my favorite guy on the planet!!  



MFEO.  That weird beard though...  

Star Wars
Unless you're living in a cave, you probably know that Star Wars is making its return to the big screen today.  Holy Han Solo!!  I love Star Wars and am not embarrassed to admit that Hubs and I actually bought our tickets to the movie back in October.  Yeah, really.  There's actually a reason for that.  We really wanted to go see it on Hubs' birthday (opening day), but we couldn't get good tickets for opening day.  We wanted to be fancy and do the Fork and Screen (where you sit in recliners and eat real food while you watch the movie, it's amazing) but the only seats we could get were first row.  No bueno.  So Saturday night it is.



We have been gearing up for the new movie by watching the old movies (the old, old ones, not those prequels).  This happened last night, on VHS.  Yes, we dusted off our VCR and set it up.  Vintage!



New Make-Up
I've been due for a make-up upgrade for a long time now.  I'm always afraid to switch to something new because if it ain't broke, don't fix it, ya know?  Anyway, I was on the search for a BB Cream (because they're all the rage) and I heard about an awesome one on the podcast I am listening to (Spawned).  Dr. Jart's Water Fuse Beauty Balm.



It's totally awesome!!!  I really really really like.  It's enough coverage and it's a 25 SPF, which is good because my favorite moisturizer (Olay Regenerist) doesn't have SPF.  It’s a little pricier than I normally pay for make up (it’s $34), but kinda worth it.  Another thing I have recently started using that I am really liking is Maybelline’s Super Stay Better Skin   Concealer.


I recently read in a magazine that liquid concealers are better than stick or pot concealers because they don’t settle into fine lines and wrinkles (two things that I am sad to say I’m paying more attention to now).  When I read this I immediately tossed my Benefit Boing pot concealer out the window and found the Maybelline.  I really like it and feel like it does a good job of covering my dark under eye circles (I didn’t have these before I had a kid, I swear) and staying put.  Score!  And last, peach blush.  I read that peach is the best color blush for everyone - even really really pasty white people like myself.  So I did research on the best peach blushes and picked one that I could buy at Target.  Enter L’oreal True Match Blush in Precious Peach.  It’s great and a nice alternative to my normal pinky blush.  Yay new make up!

Running
Let’s just skip over this, okay?  No, I kid.  I got one good run/walk in this week.  Just one, on Monday.  I got up to go on Wednesday, but wasn’t feeling peachy enough to go outside and run, so I stayed in and did a Pinterest workout or two (or I just perused Pinterest...I can’t remember details).  With the Disney10K just around the corner (January 8th), I am beating myself up about not being better about things.  But, this is how I operate, I should know and expect this by now.  Bah.  On the up side, I got my Hungry Runner Girl Donut Stop Running shirt in the mail today!  So this might motivate me to get up and out!


OK, that’s it!  I hope to be posting a little more frequently now that things are a little less hectic (taking work out of the equation).  Hope your week has been a great one!!  

How about you ... What is your fave make up product?  Star Wars fan?  Are you going to see the new one?

Tuesday, December 15, 2015

I'm Still Here!

I haven't completely abandoned this blog, I swear. Yet. (Kidding)

It's been busy busy over here lately and I have a bunch of stuff to talk about, but literally no time to sit and write up a big post about it, so here's some quickie notes about what's been up in our lives. 

First off, I have sad news to report. We lost a beloved member of our family last week. 


We had to make the horrible decision to say goodbye to Zeus last Monday. As you may know, he was just two months shy of his 20th birthday. I cry often, still, a week later. 

Aside from the sad, we have been enjoying the holiday season with a few fun Disney outings - like the Osbourne Spectacle of Lights at Disney's Hollywood Studios


Having breakfast with Minnie at Disney's Beach Club (yes, the weather is beachy here - it was 85 yesterday) 



And we have plans to go see the castle lighting at Magic Kingdom and visit Santa at Epcot later this week. Lots to do and a shrinking amount of time to do it. Why is December flying by so fast?! 

Once things settle down (aka, once I'm off of work for the holidays) I will sit down and write a proper post. Promise. For now, just wanted to stop in and say howdy!

How about you ... are you ready for Christmas? 

Wednesday, December 2, 2015

I Love Christmas Music

Let's talk about Christmas music, okay? 

I loooove Christmas music. It makes me so happy. This weekend while we were decorating the house for Christmas, I used Spotify to create the ultimate Christmas playlist (125 songs and growing, baby!) Spotify is the absolute best and has all of my favorite Christmas albums for the picking.  Here are some of my faves...  (Warning: they are ALL over the map, so no judging)

Chipmunk Christmas - Alvin and the Chipmunks 


Yep, I said that! I grew up listening to the Chipmunks Christmas cassette tape and could never find it digitally until now (bless you Spotify). When I heard Wonderful Day for the first time in probably 25 years, I loudly sang along. Love! 

Holiday Sing Along with Mitch and the Gang - Mitch Miller


I think Mitch Miller is a polka artist.  Yeah, told you these were all over the place. My grandpa loved polka music and I think that's how my family ended up with the Mitch Miller Christmas cassette collection. Anyway, I remember listening to his songs every Christmas and whenever I hear Must Be Santa, I, again, loudly sing along. 

White Christmas - Bing Crosby 


Classic. That's all I can say - all wonderful songs by the king of Christmas. 

Merry Merry Christmas - New Kids on the  Block


have a Funky Funky Christmas every year because I love jamming out to vintage NKOTB. I saw NKOTB for the first time in concert around Christmas when I was in 7th grade and they played lots of songs from this album. So I always think of that concert when I hear these tunes. Great tunes! 

This isn't an album, just a song. But it's probably my favorite holiday song of all time. It's instrumental and you'd totally know it if you heard it. So click the link above.  It’s Christmas. 

Christmas in DiverseCity - tobyMac


This is a fairly new album and I love it. I love anything tobyMac does though so.... But he has some great ones on here. Love his funky Little Drummer Boy

Holidays for Swing - Seth MacFarlane


Yes! I was just as surprised as you are! Who knew Seth MacFarlane, the man behind Family Guy and Ted, had a Christmas album? Heck, who knew he had a Frank Sinatra singing voice?!  I did not. But this album is good!! And he has duets with Sarah Bareilles (love her) and Norah Jones too. Not bad! 

So there ya go! There is my eclectic mix of Christmas jams that make me so very happy every year. Try some out, enjoy! 

How about you ... What is your favorite holiday album/song?

Monday, November 30, 2015

Turkey Day Recap

Y’all I am so not feeling today – the Monday after Thanksgiving.  AKA, the first day back to work in a full week. 

I have about 927 work things I should be doing right now, but I literally cannot.  So I’m writing here instead.  Employee of the month right here.  Hee.

Our Thanksgiving week was a great one, so I’m going to share the rundown with you now.  Ready?  Go.

Clearwater
Jillian and I spent the week in Clearwater last week with my mom and dad.  Hubs had to work (he met us down there on Wednesday afternoon), so we decided to take a mini vacation and go hang out with my parents.  And we had a blast! 


We went to the children’s zoo...


The Glazer Children's Museum in Tampa... (unfortunately I only snapped one picture)


The mall (pre-Black Friday) where we rode the holiday train...


Grandma and Grandpa's backyard where Jillian learned how to place Hide and Seek.  (she's a pro at counting to ten and saying "ready or not, here I come!")


It was great.  Lots of fun, lots of running around.  It was fun to be down there for the week! 

Turkey Trot
On Thanksgiving morning my dad and I got up early to get our cardio on by running in the Tampa Bay Times Turkey Trot 5K. 


(this is actually a pic of the Turkey Trot from a few years ago, but it's an accurate portrayal of the chaos and amount of people - it's cray)
  

Like I have mentioned before, we have run this race off and on since I was in high school, and it’s kind of become a Thanksgiving tradition for the two of us, which I love.


Since I have been on the workout wagon lately, I was actually excited to run 3.1 miles and it felt great to be out there doing it.  There were two 5Ks offered this year – a timed run for those serious runners (aka, not me) and a “fun run” which was untimed.  It’s probably best to not know what my time was.  I wasn’t out there to win anything, just wanted to get some exercise.  It was a good time.

Thanksgiving

I was in charge of desserts for Thanksgiving, so on Wednesday I made a pound cake using my mom’s recipe (OMG, so delicious) and on Thanksgiving afternoon I made something I’ve wanted to try for a while – Ohana’s Bread Pudding with Bananas Foster Sauce.  Ohana is one of our favorite restaurants out at Disney at the Polynesian Resort and their dessert is the highlight of the meal every time.  I happen to own like every Disney cookbook ever made (thanks Hubs!) and this recipe was in the book Delicious Disney.  I’ve been meaning to try it, but never had the right occasion to make it, so why not try it on Thanksgiving?


All I have to say is YUM!  I was a little worried about trying a new recipe on Thanksgiving (hence the back-up pound cake), but it turned out great!  So delicious.  I really wish I hadn’t been so stuffed from dinner, I probably would have enjoyed in a little more.  Ah well, next time.  Because I will definitely be making it again!  I'll be sure to share the recipe in an upcoming post.

Our whole Thanksgiving was great.  Ran in the morning, got cleaned up, had a good breakfast, took Jillian to the park for a while and by the time we got home my in-laws were at the house.  We visited for a while and then sat down to eat.  Everything was delicious as usual.  After dinner we worked off some of our meal by running around with Jillian in the backyard and taking pictures (with a selfie stick). 



We always take our Christmas card photo on Thanksgiving Day.  Well, after countless pictures, we didn’t have that perfect one, so we gave up and just started messing around.  We had fun. 

Home
On Friday, we headed home in the afternoon.  No Black Friday shopping for us.  We just chilled on Friday evening and Saturday.  On Sunday we had lunch plans out at the new Boathouse restaurant at Downtown Disney (er, Disney Springs) with Jordyn, who was in town from LA for the weekend.  The rest of the day was spent decorating for Christmas (!!), grocery shopping, eating Thanksgiving leftovers, and getting ready for the week ahead.  Nice way to end the busy week!

All in all, great week, great holiday, great times all around.  Another Thanksgiving in the books. Now onto Christmas!!!

How about you … How was your Thanksgiving?