12.28.2011

Christmas Time

New Uggs!!
P90X2
I'm never sick!  So imagine my surprise when I contract some kind of stomach bug just in time for Christmas.  It started on Christmas Eve.  I ignored it of course because I never get sick.  I figured it would be gone when I woke up in the morning.  No such luck.  I refused to let it spoil the holiday and still enjoyed Christmas with my family.  Mj and I exchanged gifts here at home before we left.  He totally surprised me with Uggs.  He doesn't find them that cute but he knows I do.  I also got a brown leather jacket that I picked out.  I didn't like it as much as I did online so it will be going back and I'll have to find another one for him to get me.  I got him jammie pants, P90X2, Shakeology and a blender to go with it.  He asked for the gift of exercise and I gave it to him. 
Sisters
A present for the baby
We all met up at mom and dad's house where we spent the entire day.  My mom cooked and Mj made his homemade bread and some gravy.  I basically choked down a delicious dinner in between being wracked by stomach pains.  The one plus side to the stomach bug was that half the time the thought of food was unappetizing so I didn't even want to pig out.  Which is unusual for me this time of year.  My mom and little  sister spent all of Christmas Eve baking so there were plenty of cookies to choose from for dessert...and Ice Cream...and Apple Pie.  I could only stomach one cookie and a bit of ice cream.  After dessert we did our family gift exchange.  My dad had me and got me some cute bright fashion scarfs and some trouser socks that were on my list.  Mom got us all a few things because she can't help herself.  It was a very Merry Christmas.
Mom and sis handing out gifts
Mj and I
Big sis and her family
The whole family together
The day after Christmas I went to the gym.  I have no idea how I made it through that hour long work out because the rest of the day was spent fighting that stomach pain which came almost like clockwork every 10-20 minutes.  It really makes you appreciate your health when you feel like total crap.  Tuesday Mj took an extra day off because I asked him to in my sad sick voice.  I was feeling well enough to visit my friend Eb and it was nice to finally have time to see her and her new baby girl.   Today I had a great pain free work out at the gym and then got my hair did.  It was a beautiful sunny 77 degrees today but do you think that stopped me from wearing my new Uggs?  Nope.  I wore a tank top to balance them out.  I'm still really enjoying my time off from work and basically don't ever want it to end.

Sister Time

Little sis
Big sis Dani and my nephew
Dani picked out this robe and Tia gave it to her for X mas.
 I had a great time with my sisters.  Last Tuesday I picked up Tia from the airport and she spent the night at my house.  On Wednesday we spent the day with our older sister up where she lives.  We went out to Mimi's Cafe for lunch first.  I had a delicious Cobb salad which was a welcome break from all of the pure junk I've been eating.  Then it was time for the mall.  We all finished up our Christmas shopping then went back to the house and hung out.  Later that night we went to a late showing of Breaking Dawn Part 1.  I'm not sure who's idea it was to wear our pajamas but a 10:25 pm showing is pretty late so it seemed like a perfectly reasonable idea.  The movie was so good that I got my 2nd 3rd wind and perked up enough to enjoy it.  Can't wait for part 2.  As soon as we got home we went straight to bed. 
Dressed for the movies...sort of
The Theater was deserted.  Glad we didn't bother getting dressed!
waiting for the movie to start
I'm the middle child
The next morning we woke up and went to mom and dad's house.  We hung out there and mom made hamburgers for dinner.  I'm so glad that I was off of work and got to enjoy this time with them.  I really love spending time with my sisters.  Too bad it doesn't happen often enough but I certainly cherish it when it does.

12.20.2011

Decorated the Tree and I'm Free

It basically looks the same as last year and I love it!!
After two weeks of being too tired and busy to do it we FINALLY decorated our tree on Saturday.  It's funny that it took us two weeks to get around to it but it only took about 20 minutes once we finally did it.  I even got some presents wrapped to put under the tree.  I don't do a whole lot for Christmas which is nice because there is no stress.  People ask me if I'm "ready" for Christmas like it's some sort of competition or an exam, but there really isn't much to be done.  Our family exchanges names so I have my family gift to buy and something for the husband.  Done and done.  I also get something for my little nephew.  I haven't done that yet  but there is plenty of time.  I'm such a holiday slacker.  I don't even bake.  My husband is actually in the kitchen making these delightful sugar cookies and Turkey soup with our left over Turkey Carcass from Thanksgiving.  The cookies are German.  Don't even bother trying to pronounce it; I can't.  I need more sugar like I need a hole in my head but they sure are tasty.  It definitely looks AND smells like Christmas in here. 

Spritz spezialitaten Cookies
At my job we don't do the whole holiday party thing but they still make us feel appreciated.  Last Thursday there was a holiday reception for the whole district with some really good food.  Our holiday gift this year was an awesome canvas black fold up outdoor chair.  The kind that folds up into a little bag and has a cup holder in it.  Our boss gave each of us a gift too.  Today was our department holiday luncheon at the Prado in Balboa Park.  We had a little banquet room all to ourselves and the food was really good.

I'm picking up my younger sister who is coming in from San Francisco tonight.  Tomorrow we will spend the day and night up at my older sister's house.  I'm so looking forward to spending time with them.  We are going to do fun stuff that sisters do like shop, eat, talk, hang out and watch teen vampire movies.  Yep, we're finally going to go see Breaking Dawn.  Tomorrow also marks the official start of my holiday vacation.  I don't go back to work until Jan 3rd.  For the next 13 days I will be a Lady of Leisure.  My job totally shuts down for the holidays and we don't even have to use vacation time.  My time will be all my own to do with whatever I please.  I've felt so tired and ragged like I always do towards the end of a long year so I really, really REALLY need this right about now.  I am free!! And it feels great.

12.19.2011

Beachbody Challenge

I have a sugar addiction.  There...I said it!!!  Normally, it's not that big of a deal but during the holidays when there is chocolate, cookies, and cake every where I turn at work then at home it becomes a major issue because it's very hard for me to just say no. Anyways, I've decided that enough is enough!  One of my goals for 2011 was to get back to the gym on a regular basis.  I committed to working out at least twice a week and I have done that for an entire year year now.  I've decided to change things up and do my own personal challenge.  It's basically just committing to 60 days of a healthy diet and regular exercise plan.  Calling it a "challenge" is just a really good way to keep myself accountable and make a conscious effort to do it and stick with it.  I'm going to shoot for working out a minimum of 30 minutes per day 5 days per week.  I don't need to lose weight.  I really want to diversify my work outs and focus less on just burning calories and work more on building muscle tone and flexibility.  Mj is doing a 90 day Beach Body Challenge so we can help motivate each other.  I seriously don't think I have the internal willpower to do P90X2 or Insanity.  I'm just not that hard core! Call me a wimp but I think those are just too hard and not really my style anyways.  I'm probably going to do Slim in 6, Yoga Booty Ballet and/or some other combo of exercise videos.  The more the merrier I'd say so that I don't get bored.  My sister Dani's thing is Turbo Fire and she does that one almost daily and has lost most of her baby weight doing that alone.  She burns about 600 calories per work out.  I will probably still mix the gym in too; which is usually Elliptical but I think being able to work out at home will make it easier to stick with working out.

I don't have a specific diet plan.  I mainly just want to focus on eating lots of fruits, vegetables and nutrient dense foods.  I pretty much suck at doing this!  I don't think I'll totally eliminate sweets from my diet but it needs to be in moderation and not a multiple times daily habit like it's been over the last month or so.  I love the idea that Shakeology takes the guess work out of what to eat and gives you a full serving of all the vitamins and nutrients that you need for an entire day in one drink!  That is huge because on a day to day basis that's really hard to do.  I don't really like shakes so I don't think it will work for me.  My sister loves them though and says the chocolate is pretty delicious.
P90X2 is here!!  Source:  Beachbody.com
Now if you want to do the Beach Body Challenge the commit to get fit plan Step 1 is pretty basic.  Commit to at least 60 or 90 days of an exercise plan and a healthy diet that may or may not include Shakeology.  Sign up for the free Team Beachbody membership here.  Enter the Team Beach Body Challenge here and then log into the Wowy Super Gym Daily Sweepstakes here  to schedule and log work outs.  Every day that you log a work out you are entered into a contest for that day to win $500.   If you want to go big and are interested in being eligible for Monthly, Quarterly and Grand Prizes ranging from $1,000 to $100,000 you must do Step 1 to sign up and then Step 2 where you enter transformation results along with before, after pictures, stats and a series of other questions by March 31st.  If you go this route you will be asked specifically which Beach Body training program you used and you are eligible for bonus prizes if you use Shakeology.  At the very minimum you will get a Free T-Shirt for doing it.  You will also be part of the $500 daily prize contest for logging your work outs.  So, if you are serious about doing the full on Beach Body Challenge you should get started ASAP...or as soon as Christmas is over!!  The link to the Beach Body Challenge FAQ section is here. 




If anyone is interested in any part of this my sister Dani is a Beachbody coach.  Her screen name is DANILUVFIT and as a coach she receives a credit for new team members and purchases.  She can answer any questions about exercise videos, Shakeology, how to get signed up and what you can do for the challenge.  This is her Team Beachbody link (if that video pops up you have to double click just above it in the middle to get rid of it).  Here, you can also shop for Shakeology or Beach Body exercise videos.  P90X 2 just got released about a week ago.

There is no gimmick here.  You will not get results unless you put in the time and effort.  Being fit and healthy has and always will be about a healthy diet and exercise.  The Beach Body Challenge just gives you tools, rewards and a framework to get you into that mind set and help keep you motivated.



Slim in 6


Yoga Booty Ballet


Turbo Fire with Chalene Johnson


P90X vs P90X2

12.13.2011

Jam Packed Weekend


Last weekend was jam packed.  Where do I begin...Ok Friday night.  My friend Fe was a bridesmaid in my wedding and I haven't seen her since.  She lives out of state but was in town for work and I was so excited to get a chance to see her.   We met up for happy hour and got into some great conversations about life, love and work.  Just what a girl needs every  now and then.  She hasn't seen our house yet so she stopped by.  It was really good to see her.

Our party bus for the night
Saturday night was Mj's company holiday party which I very much look forward to every year.  It's a chance to dress up, eat, drink and be merry on the company dime.  The party was at Loew's Coronado Bay and Resort.  Their rooms average about $380 per night so yeah...we didn't stay there.  The four of us took a cab bus there from our hotel which was also pretty nice.  We had a good time.  The food was delicious.  They had a Macaroni & Cheese Martini Bar station.  Need I say more?  Band's are nice for ambiance but overall I think they're pretty lame for dancing so I didn't do too much of that.  We left around 9pm once it became clear that we would not be winning any raffle prizes and went downtown where we finally got the chance to get our groove on.  We found a club with a good DJ and a wide open dance floor and basically danced all night long.  We had a blast.  I won't go into the gory details but I definitely drank too much.  When will I learn that I cannot drink nearly as much as I seem to think I can?  I have no idea what time we made it back to the hotel but I think it was pretty late.

Me and my mac and cheese martini


Dancing the night away
Sunday morning we met Laura and Rob for breakfast then Mj and I went to the Bills v Chargers game.  We had great seats but it's still so hard to find the ball while watching a live game.   Luckily the sun was facing us so that kept me warm through most of it.  It was fun watching the Charger girls.  The home team won; Mj wasn't too happy about that.  I was pretty tired by then so I was really glad to finally get back home.  Not so glad to have to take a test for school but at least I got it over with.  One down and one more to go.
Chargers V Bills

It went against every fiber of my being to go out on a Monday night after work.  It was cold and rainy and I'd already had a full weekend and a very long day.  Mj's friend's cousin was doing stand up so we met up at a nearby burger joint then went out to comedy night with his friends.  I forgot how vulgar and nasty comedy can be but it was fun and funny.  Tonight there are no plans unless you count the gym.  The weekend was exhausting...but fun!  I'm a homebody so a lot of times I just want to stay home but I think it's good for me to get pushed out the door and pushed past my limits every now and then.  Life is meant to be lived....even if I often don't  feel I actually have time to live it!  But we sure made time this weekend.  I hate to say it but we still haven't decorated our poor little Christmas Tree.  Hanging head in shame.

12.08.2011

Thursday Thoughts

It's funny how you could have never heard of something your entire life and then once you do you keep hearing about it.  I'd never heard of punkin chunkin before in my life until I watched a Modern Family episode where Cam had this far fetched story about chunkin a punkin in a sling across an entire football field and they chunked a punkin at the end in an attempt to see if he was fibbing or actually telling the truth.  Then over Thanksgiving break I happened to see the Punkin Chunkin World Championships competition on TV.  Ironically enough, this occurs in Mj's home state of Delaware and is a big thing there.  Then, I discover a new blogger and she lives guess where?  Delaware.  And she actually went to guess what?  The Punkin Chunkin' World Championships to watch.  It seems that you don't know of something until the universe decides you are supposed to and then once you do it sort of pops up all over the place.  Never heard of it either?  Well, they have a website of course; Punkinchunkin.com.

As if Basketball Wives weren't enough we now have the pleasure of Baseball Wives in Arizona.  This show is really reaching here.  Most of them aren't even actually wives and most of the who are actually wives are married to retired players.  They'll show a "wife" and the illustrious caption of Married to So and So Retired flashes across the screen.  Or even worse,  Ex Wife of So and So (Tampa Bay).  If you are really at the bottom of the barrel it says Dated so and so (Denver).  Okay.  I better shut up though; because at least it gets me through my Elliptical work outs.

Is anyone else a regular unwitting participant in class action lawsuits?  I had a string of class action settlement pay days last year and a few this year too. I can't even count how many class action e mails and letters I've received advising me of my rights to opt out or in or whatever else.  Most of the time the lawsuits are against companies I've actually heard of but a couple weeks ago I got an $18.00 check out of the blue for a lawsuit about something I've never even heard of.  It's funny how they find me too.  They had my new address but not not my new last name.  It's kinda nice to receive a $20 check here or a $30 check there every now and then out of the blue.  It's just odd.
Decorate Me
OK...so we got the tree last Saturday.  It smells like Christmas but it doesn't look like it quite yet.  We have TWO neighbors with lit up Christmas carousels in their front yards (I know....random).  We also have a blow up Santa and Reindeer across the street and we have yet to decorate our tree.  This is a going to be a jam packed weekend but mark my words it will be decorated  by the time the weekend is out.

12.05.2011

Me Time

The minute I walk in I can already feel myself relaxing.  The dim lighting and the melodic soothing music lull me into a feeling of calm and a general sense of well being.  I change into my white robe and step out into the lobby where I pour myself a cup of refreshing lemon water and help myself to a granola bar from the snack basket.  The smell of jasmine fills my nostrils as I sit there and read a magazine.  Can you guess where I am?  Oh yes...the spa.  I love facials.  It's not full body like a massage but they get your shoulders, neck and arms and it makes your skin feel so good.  My skin felt nice and tingly for the rest of the day.  The pedicure was nice too.  I got a sparkly bright red color so I'm all ready for the holiday party on Saturday.  You can't do housework after being pampered like that so I came home and relaxed.  Well, mostly.  I did some homework too.  The cleaning and the laundry can wait until the next weekend. 

I'll spend money on something tangible like clothes but rarely do I spend money on spa treatments.  I have my husband to thank for sending me off to the spa this time and most of the times before this.  If I could I would do it every month but it's nice just to be able to do it at all every now and then.  Life feels so rushed and exhausting sometimes that it's refreshing to slow down and totally focus on yourself in just one moment without having to think about the next.  I had 2 1/2 hours where the only thing I needed to do was relax, feel good and let myself be pampered.  When I think about it, I can't really put a price tag on that.