Thursday, February 23, 2012

What's Your Song? {Link-up}

I'm staring at a blond 2 year old of one of the employees I work with and secretly wishing she was mine. She stands on her tip toes at the edge of my desk and reaches over to show me her Valentine's Day ring. "It's red," she says excitedly. Her smile widens as I compliment her brilliance. I match my smile to hers, and she's off.

My maternal instincts are higher these days. It's a mixture of depression, excitement, and a lucid persistence. Lynn jokingly said she thinks of me whenever she sees a baby. I suppose my love for children hasn't gone completely unnoticed. A year ago, I was more than ready. Let's move in together. Let's get married. Let's have babies. Now, not so ready, but anxious all the same. I've been plagued by desires to speed things up, and I find myself lost in fantasy about my future much too often (not that that's atypical). And it's causing me to speak out of turn. I fear that I push him away every time it leaks out; unable to contain itself any longer. I'm gradually acknowledging that this milestone is farther off than I imagined, but that doesn't make it any less taxing. Not my will, but God's. So long as I can remember that, I'll be fine.

Speaking of God, everyone's talking about Lent. If I could give up thinking about marriage and children and other things I'm not ready to think about, I certainly would. Instead, I'm giving up buying books for 45 more days. My addiction to crisp new pages and riveting story lines makes this an ambitious attempt, but I'm confident in my ability to make it to April 7th (which also happens to be my little brother's birthday) without hauling my behind to b&n or getting on Amazon. I'm not secretly thankful that I've been adding to my
"still to read" pile. :)

I've been doing a lot of sleeping lately, which is generally unlike me. I'd like to blame it on David and his propensity to keep me up well into the night (though this has been steadily decreasing)...and the way that my body contours to his perfectly. Being wide awake lends no aid to me the second I put my head on his chest. Goodnight moon.

As a brief update, our C25K progress is coming along swimmingly. While it's true that David is faster than me, we're both pushing ourselves to a steady pace; growing stronger with each completion.Only 19 training days to go.


The first time I heard this song, I thought that the line "life makes love look hard" fit Love's description perfectly. Having been in relationships that simply don't work, and having seen other people who create drama and distress in their own, I've become less sure that my friends' marriages will last, and more certain that divorce is the norm. Also, I've found that the pressure to settle down, get married, and have children tends to take away from the whimsical nature of a developing relationship (guilty). I'm doing my best to keep my focus and energy on the present, loving him like each day was our last. (Matthew 24:36). If you're reading this, darling, I love you.

Generally, I'm not a fan of Taylor Swift's immature, malnutured voice, but this song is cute.

Get connected with Goodnight Moon's Thursday song link-up here:

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

“If everything seems under control, you're not going fast enough.”

After last week's scare regarding one of my submitted grad school papers (not submitting it for plagiarism critique--supposedly resulting in an incomplete), I received word from my professor that she was going to let my slip-up slide based on my prior performance (#winning!). Thank God. My precious "A" average remains untainted.

Orlando and Tampa presented an array of excitement and slight disappointment. The hockey game was spectacular, despite Mallory's unrest about the Capitals' loss to the Lightning. We were a little far from the rink (still pretty awesome seats!), but I managed to shoot some clear pictures.

Hooray for spell check.
Cue ridiculous boyfriend...

And a Bolts' victory!
Lynn, Mal, Me, David, Brandon, Denise
Over dinner, David and I were surprised to find out that Denise's plumbing wasn't working (damn you, septic systems). No bathroom. No showers. Just grossness and gurgling toilets. For convenience sake, we were hard pressed to head over to a nearby hotel, only to learn that every hotel in the surrounding 20 miles was completely booked...except for the Crowne Plaza, which was charging $440/night. Really?! We sucked it up and headed back to Denise's for the night.

Sunday was plagued by tickets: one (not for certain, but a high possibility) for having to run a toll (I threw my money in, I swear!!), and the other for speeding (bound to happen sooner or later). Luckily, the officer knocked it down to 79 mph (the minimum) instead of 87 mph (good thing I slowed down from 100 when I got onto I-10), resulting in $125 fine and 3 points, rather than $205, 4 points, and the likely suspension of my driver's license. I can't even begin to speculate how many points I've accrued over the years. Hilariously, I nearly cried at the thought that I might get a $100 toll-running ticket, but was content getting one for speeding. I may or may not have a speeding addiction.

We finished out the weekend with Day 1, Week 2 of the C2K5, and the Billy on the Street gameshow.


Yesterday was Lynn's birthday. We had a handful of people over (a little quieter different than last year's surprise party) and celebrated one more year of this lovely lady's life. I first met Lynn on the phone; screaming (like she does) in the background as I talked to the boy I thought I'd marry. She was fun, lively, and had a contagious laugh. So naturally, I gravitated toward her. In what seemed like weeks (months, really), I was stealing time for "girls night" with her, Alaina, Aimee, and some random others every week. For a little while, we walked around Lake Ella once or twice a week, just to catch up and get some exercise. She slowly stepped up as an escape from my reality; bringing strength and perseverance to me when I thought I was trapped in a life that was destroying me. I quickly jumped at the opportunity to move in with her, convinced that she would be much better than any of the roommates I've previously had ('cept for Angela, duh!). It's great to see how friendships evolve from simple acquaintanceship. What used to be merely an exchange of socially acceptable semantics has blossomed in a perfect friendship complete with clothes-sharing, meal-making, Notebook-crying watching adventures. These days, we're spending Tuesdays at 4th Quarter, gossiping about Dexter, losing at board games, and training for the Color Run. Lynn is the epitome of friendship, and the definition of unconditional love. I like doing her eyebrows and dressing her up to go out. I love that she lets me cut her hair without any hair-cutting experience. I miss her when she's not around. I hug her every chance I get. I'm so grateful for the moments we get to spend together, and the patience she has for my debauchery. I'm so blessed to have all these wonderful people in my life. If anything came out of the Justin catastrophe, at least he led me to them.

Lynn gang-banging my football game virginity.  
Last year's surprise party! Her very first!
I can't believe this is one of only a few pictures that we have together. Cheesy smiles, squinty eyes, and all. 
Happy Birthday Unicorns 2012
Mallory's delicious cupcake-cake.
As a final thought, please pray for David's success with his job interview this Wednesday!

Photo cred to DLJ!

Thursday, February 16, 2012

What's Your Song? {Link-up}

David finally convinced me to watch Remember the Titans with him for the first time (yea, yea, yea...leave me be). I was hardpressed to say that I actually enjoyed it. A lot. It's got me singing Motown in my sleep.

Headed to Tampa this weekend with Lynn, Mallory, Brandon, Denise, and David for the hockey game! I'm so very excited. There's something about taking road trips and always getting to take them with David that makes the hours spent in the car worth every second. Happy Thursday!

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Stress: nothing more than a socially acceptable form of mental illness


David, do you see what I see?
A few times a year, I get into a funk that makes me feel rushed and even more claustrophobic than usual.

But let's start with the good:

1) I never got to blog about my trip to Islands of Adventure with David, but it was perfect. It was really the first time we've taken a spontaneous trip (a large feat for the man who meticulously plans everything). I've decided to keep the trip to myself. Oh, and if you haven't already: GO TO HARRY POTTER WORLD!

2) I bought cute, reasonably-priced running shoes. They're both comfortable and chic.

3) I started making my Valentine's Day cake pops. The heart molds came out great!!

Not mine, but similar!
4) The group's first two days of 5k training were a success. I'm sore. But it's wonderful. Turns out that the C25K app (free!) is perfect.
5) David and I are joining Weight Watchers to help get us in shape and lay a foundation for long-term healthy eating habits.

6) My first graduate class was a success. "A", baybay! (Please laugh.)
7) This upcoming weekend is the hockey game; the details of which have been worked out so that we can head to Tampa after our soccer games.
8) The Tallahassee weather has been absolutely excellent!
9) I've been reading the Hunger Games series, and I'm on the last book. I recently ordered The Wolves of Mercy Falls trilogy: Shiver, Linger, and Forever. I didn't initially want to read these, but I've heard good things.

And the not-so-good:

1) I had a mini episode (in my mind) when I found out that David didn't want me to make him cake pops for Valentine's Day. I hadn't really come up with any creative, non-cliche back up plans, so I felt like a crummy girlfriend. That and I had spent too much a decent amount of money on all the supplies. Some good came out of it, though. We decided that not making a big deal out of the stupid day will make us both feel less obligated. I felt a little better. And now I can refine my cake pop making skills for Lauren's bridal shower. Here's to thinking positive.

2) Leo (my dog) peed on my mattress yesterday morning (right after my shower, 20 minutes before I had to leave for work). Not just any mattress, mind you. A cashmere, tempurpedic, unwashable mattress. I called in late, tried some oxyclean (which, in turn, bleached it. damn it.), tried some carpet cleaner, and after scrubbing it profusely, put my fan close by to help dry it. I now have new sheets and a waterproof mattress protector.

Not leo, but kind of Leo.

3) The great weather I mentioned is not so great for 5k training and asthma.

4) I worked on the cake pops last night. Turns out that the molds were too thin for even the super skinny lollipop sticks I bought. Thankfully, David was there to reassure me that my crisis had a solution, and I combined two cake pops with the stick and some chocolate in the middle to make one giant pop. The candy melts were a whole other issue. I tried to lower these incredibly heavy pops into the chocolate, and ended up losing some cake. So the frosting job was shotty, at best. I quickly ran out of chocolate for this first batch, and only ended up with four pops. Frustrated and discouraged, I decided that that was enough for one night. I will say, though, that David really did a good job of consoling me about my baking failure (thank you, darling). Truthfully, the cake pops were delicious, and my standards for the aesthetics were too high.

All in all, there's honestly not much I need to be stressed about. I think it's really just the prospect of going out of town a lot in the next few months, and helping create the best (and hopefully only) wedding experience ever for my best friend.

February 17th-19th: Orlando/Tampa for hockey game
March 3rd-4th: Charlotte with David
March 16th-18th: Orlando for Lauren's bachelorette party
March 24th-25th: Camping with the gang
April 13th-22nd: West Palm for Lauren's wedding-ness

Between the trips, I'll still be working (we're losing another person at work...still not hiring new people), training for the 5k, trying to eat healthy, and getting my course work finished. Prayers for strength!


Thursday, February 9, 2012

What's your song? {Link-up}

Ever since watching Rocky Horror Picture Show with Lynn a few weeks ago and again last week with David, I've had the soundtrack on repeat in my head. I LOVE Tim Curry. I'm so envious of his wardrobe (that I would never wear, but secretly wish I could), his lips, and his general voluptuousness. I imagine he had the time of his life making this movie. Is it sad that I think he looks better as a transvestite? Sigh.

This song is fun: something I wish I was doing more of these days. Sometimes I wish I could be a man just so I could be a transvestite and sing this song. Is that weird? Hope it gets stuck in your head!

Link-up with Goodnight Moon and get your linking on.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Coming to terms with reality? I'd say so.

I wanted to start my first blog of the week with pictures from our wonderful day at Islands of Adventure, but I woke up this morning with a different nagging blog topic.

I have been making a better attempt to decrease my sugar and calorie intake by minimizing the amount of dessert I eat, drinking mostly water and coffee, and returning to a fast-food-free lifestyle since I dated (and almost married...ugh) a fast-food enthusiast. Being a generally healthly, incredibly physically active child/adolescent/young adult, I never anticipated the effect that losing control for just a few months would have on my body. I first noticed how out of control my weight had become when David and I were in Georgia last September. Now that it's February, I'm feeling fat enough to do something about it.

I got a gym membership at the YMCA for a few months later last year, but the monotony of working 8-5 began to drag me down at an alarming rate. Like any slightly depressed, recently single and even more recently not-so-single, overweight woman, I started off determined to get back to where I had been just one year ago. You know how they show commercials of intense weight loss from "one year ago" to "one year later"? I did the exact opposite. In September 2011, I'd gained a wonderful 50 lbs since December 2010. I like to blame on it the stress and upheaval that occured during the Justin phase, but you can really only blame being out of control and abstaining from exercise on yourself.

And it just continued to get worse.

I tried to stick with the gym, but I got discouraged when I couldn't find a work out partner. It was harder and harder to keep going everyday while I lacked motivation. So then I started walking ( My roommates were also determined to shed some pounds, so we all agreed to set up a walking-plan around the neighborhood, which would total (2) miles a day, every day. Unfortunately, they (sorry to call you guys out) started to fall out, and I found myself walking alone; upset at the lack of commitment and certain that I, too, would eventually begin to avoid the daily walk. Low and behold, a string of missed days followed by the end of that pact confirmed everything I supposed would happen.

Here's the beginning (December 2010): 

This wasn't even the height of my health kick (that's what I get after dating a health and exercise nut for three years)! Simply the beginning of the end...

And here's what I'm working with (September 2011):

Check out those rolls...and the chin(s)!

The picture above is from September. I can only imagine that four months and two fat holidays (Thanksgiving and Christmas) later, I've only gotten heavier. Needless to say, I feel DISGUSTING, ugly, and miserable; and I'm pissed because I keep having to buy clothes that I swear will be too big for me, but really end up being too small. Soon I'll end up walking with a waddle and eating my food off a plate that rests on my stomach like a table. And then I'll be featured on TLC'S Strange Sex series (not that I'm having any) for overweight people who are into "feeding".

Okay, maybe I'm exaggerating a little.

And to make matters worse, both and David and Mallory have settled on NOT running in the 5k with me, leaving Lynn and I to fight this seemingly hopeless battle alone. Sure, they (David and Mal) agreed to "train" for it, but what motivation do they have if there's no means to the end? I fear that, like the walking, I'll soon be alone in this endeavor too. While everyone is gallivanting and having fun and playing Ticket to Ride (I seriously hate this game) and eating whatever the heck their stomachs crave, I'll be denying myself anything delicious while in a constant state of exhaustion. Here's the good news: I've made the conscious decision to move from A to B and drastically alter the messy, fat downward spiral that I've created. I'm even in the process of selecting the perfect 5k worthy sneakers to seal my dedication to this transformation.

The training: (3) days a week (I've settled on Saturday, Monday, and Thursday), based on the 8 week Couch to 5k program. I'm starting Day 1 this Saturday, February 11th. This would make April 7th the date to work toward. After I reach that, I'll be working on maintaining the stamina and improving my run time. By the time December rolls around, I'll be more than ready for the 5k.

The goal: Be able to complete a 5k--without stopping, by December for the Color Run.

Your job: KEEP ME ACCOUNTABLE! Ask me how I'm doing with my training, if I've slipped up any, and give me a friendly slap on the wrist to remind me of the mission.

I'm desperately hoping that I can stick with it, and thereby change the outcome of my current, gross situation. Whether or not the rest of the group drops out, I'm never on my own with God.

Please keep me in your prayers, and stay blessed, friends.

Friday, February 3, 2012

Nail Files {Link-Up}

This is my very first link-up with Tara from Fabulous but Evil that features my weekly nail color. Honestly, I'm hoping this will encourage me to take better care of my nails even though I already feel like a clean-nail nazi.

The Nail Files

I hurriedly tried to paint my nails while walking out the door for work this morning. I decided to use one of my more recent polish scores that I had yet to try, Neon Sapphire by Santee. It turned out surprisingly pretty, despite being such a bold color. It also helped that I wore blue today.

I didn't remember that deleting the picture of my nails would remove it from here, so look for a new one next week, and I'll try to remember not to delete it ^_^

Painting my nails always reminds me how thankful I am to be ambidextrous. Also, it reminds me of how crappy the camera on my phone is, and further convinces me to get an iPhone. Updates this weekend about my split pea soup (currently still in the slow cooker for tonight!). Enjoy your Friday, friends.

Thursday, February 2, 2012

What's Your Song? {LINK-UP} and other stuff

Tuesday trivia at 4th Quarter proved to reaffirm my inability to participate in any kind of trivia. Ask me about words, or grammar, or nerdy-sciency stuff and I've got you. Ask me about old songs, current events, and peoples' names...that's another story. Sure, I get to spend time with my favorite Tallahassee people, so it's worth it. But right now, I'm spending time sifting through current events, trying to up my game.

Lynn, Mal, David, and I have agreed to start training on February 11th (after soccer is over for David and I) for a 5K that's in December. I'm skeptical about the group's dedication, but I've decided that it'd be good to have a fitness end-goal to work toward. First thing on the agenda? Buy new shoes (that's always the first step). I probably won't spend $150 (probably won't) on these shoes, but the style is along the lines of what I'm going for. I love my athletic shoes to be bright colors. It makes running fun. But in lieu of moderate spending, I'm leaning more toward these or these.

I had my interview with a local LPCMH (licensed professional counselor of mental health) yesterday. I realized that I had nothing professional enough to wear for my meeting with someone (who could possibly be a future employer) in my field. Unfortunately, it was around 10:30pm on Tuesday night that I realized this, and I'm not shopping at Walmart. No thank you. I left work early on Wednesday, before my interview, to hit up New York and Company. Talk about a perfect suit. And for only $70 (on-sale, plus 30% off coupon)! *Tear* My bougie [see definition here] dreams are coming true! After I got home, I got a call from the director of the Behavioral Health unit at the local hospital, who ended up offering me an internship opportunity. I have another meeting this afternoon with another clinician. All very exciting!

David has a habit of singing songs to me in a most ridiculous fashion. I really love this more than anything else he does. Anyway, without further adieu, here's my song link-up with Goodnight Moon: