It works!

Monday, June 30, 2008

That ebook works! I went on my long run on Saturday. I was really nervous because, again, I'd be in a public place. I wore my "protection" just in case, but if I had issues like last time it wouldn't matter. I'd been doing my exercises add day. They say alot 5 minutes a day to do them. I've been doing them every other hour I've been away. I've done them while getting ready in the morning, driving to work, in meetings, during lunch, cooking, nursing the baby, cleaning, doing laundry, talking on the phone, watching movies, you get the idea.

It's actually several exercises in one book. Starting from the basic exercise, going up to the more advanced moves. I've not quite perfected the advances moves, but I'm fairly confident in the basic gestures.

So I set off on my run. I started slowly with a walk, making sure that I utilized my muscles properly. So far, no problem. I did a light jog, maintaining a normal level of conversation too, and I started to feel uneasy, but then did the exercise and it worked! Nothing happened. I tried to remain focused like that for the first two miles. Then, I kicked it up a notch and started to do my normal jog and left Don. I was running behind these two other women who were really putting it in high gear. I only hoped to keep them in my sights, especially considering we were going up this monster hill! Anyway, I launched myself in full jog mode, complete with competitive spirit surge. I conquered that hill with confidence! And best of all NO PROBLEM!!! Yes, those women smoked me, but I eventually caught up with them when they stopped and I was jogging my downhill.

Now, I can't say that I didn't walk away with a minor accident, b/c that wasn't the case. On the descent from that big hill, I became a little too relaxed and forgot about my exercises. But still, that was so MINOR compared to the recent unfortunate events. I'm so happy about it and I just had to share it. It definitely takes work, but it is so worth it. I'm glad I made that purchase and I'm glad I followed through. I'll let you know if it continues to work. And not to be gross, but I was happy to discover that those fast-paced women also slightly smelled of urine, so I'm not alone. How crazy is that? And another friend of mine went into great detail of how "gross" runners can be, especially the hard core athletes who are pushing for their time. All I can say is that there are some extremely dedicated people out there and if I were in the same position, I probably wouldn't make the same choices.

Sidenote:My sister has some friends that have run in the NYC marathon and here was their tip - Be sure to run on the top bridge ALWAYS because runners pee from the top and it'll dribble down on top of you if you are on the lower bridge. So it is worth it to run in the sun instead of being peed on in the shade. --->How random is that? Something I never would have considered.

Welcome William Hayden

Sunday, June 29, 2008

He's here! He's here! He's here!

He's absolutely perfect. 10 fingers, 10 toes a full head of hair and just absolutely precious. He slept most of the time we were there with a little bit of humming and baby singing. It was really great!

Official Stats:
Born at 12:59PM
9lbs 7 oz (whoa momma! Go Lindz!!!!)
21 1/4 inches
Lots and lots of light brown hair

This has got to be my favorite picture of all. That's 100% true love! Welcome to the world Hayden and welcome to that wonderful thing that is motherhood, Lindsey.

Waiting and waiting and waiting

Right now we are at Medical City of Plano waiting on one of my BFF's to deliver her first baby: Hayden. We fill the sparse waiting room, adding life to the teal green carpet and maroon chairs. There's a small TV in the corner adding to the white noise in the distance. Her parents are here, his parents are here. Her two sisters are here. One of the other tri-fecta of my BFF's is here holding my own little one as she rests quietly on her chest. My beloved is here too. I love the fact that, without complaint, he got up, got dressed and helped me load up the car so we could come play the waiting game.

It's 1:04 and proud grandpa came through and IT'S A BOY!!!

yaaay. now off to go and welcome him.


Friday, June 27, 2008

Today was one of those whirlwind days full of many activities! First off, I was out of control busy at work with all sorts of meetings and thinking. About mid-day my head was killing me and I didn't know what to do. I just took a deep breath and tried to calm myself. I left work early because I seriously thought I was going to crack! Plus, I needed to hold my baby and I wanted to see the concrete being poured in our backyard. When I got home, this is how happy she was to see me. I'm so blessed to have such a happy baby! She's so stinkin' cute and I LOVE IT! Thanks to Danika for the lovely headband. That is one of the few ones that she'll actually wear in her entire set of hair products.

We opted to move ahead of schedule (but behind in the original-original schedule) and get concrete poured in the backyard. We always wanted to extend the patio out, but still wanted it poured deep enough in the event we wanted to opt to build out and add that extra room. Don did the research and one of my co-workers gave me the concrete guys she used and they gave us a fair deal. We are very pleased with the work they've done so far. Before the concrete began to set completely, we imprinted the family. Mari's foot was the trunk of a tree. Mine and Don's hands were the "branches" and Guapo's paw is the sun. I'll have to get a picture of it when it is dry. I thought it came out pretty cute, so we'll see.

Next, I was a little tired from last night. I stayed up late painting a pot for my co-worker. She works in our HR department and has always been so kind and patient with me and all of my questions. When Mari was born, she FedExed all of the necessary paperwork to me 2 days before it would've been too late to put her on my insurance. I had no idea that it had gotten that close to the edge. I was so happy that she was taking care of me. That's just how she is and I'm eternally grateful to her. Anyway, her mother passed away last week and it was so sad. I painted this pot so we could transplant one of the saplings growing in the front yard to it. A new tree for a new beginning. She was so happy to get it and it made me happy to know she not only liked it, but it made her happy.

When I got home from work, my beloved had a surprise waiting for me. He'd handmade this little flower giving me clues to my surprise birthday present. See, this is another reason why I love him, he appreciates the birthday month too!! Anyway, I took my clue inside. I, of course, was running around settling in. Changing clothes and prepping for what was to come later. Anyway, I hurried along and I didn't notice where it was hidden immediately. But restling gently in Mari's swing was my gift. So there you go, I lifted the bright yellow packaging and immediately knew what he'd gotten me. I gently opened his hand wrapping (literally, he used cardstock and decorated the outside by drawing a lovely outdoor image) and there it was....Photoshop CS3!!!! I'd been wanting it for at least a year and there it was. Hooray!!! I can now buy actions online to be used specifically for CS3 and I can use all of the tricks that I've learned in several other tutorials, but always had to modify for my Version 7. Anyway, it was a nice surprise.

I forgot to mention the pettiskirts that I'd ordered a while back. I got one for my niece and 2 for Mari. I'm well aware that I don't know if she is a girly girl or not, but most little girls like to play dress-up, so when I got them I figured why not. Well, my niece's came in and I went by to pick it up. It is so much fun!!! It is waaay too big for Mari now, but that didn't stop me from putting it on her and letting it overtake her. She seemed to have fun in it and I loved her in it. I can't wait until hers come in!

And for the final news...we are proud of our very own brand new Chevy Equinox! It had 13 miles on it when we signed the paperwork and so I opted to name it Lucky. GG Skip's cat is named Lucky too! Anyway, here is the first pic of our car. It is very dark and I apologize, but after having been at the car dealership for several hours, we no longer had daylight. I will take more pictures soon. Especially after we have it detailed and prettied up to show off. So long little Ranger, you were a good truck to us!
High five for the start to a great weekend. Now let's hope I survive tomorrow's 8 miler! Whoooo...I'll get to test out the exercises I've been reading about in that book and we'll see if there's any improvement.

All over thoughts...

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Last night I had a lovely dream where I'd jumped from a smoking airplane and somehow managed to get a hold of a pack that contained a parachute. I was unaware of how high I was, but my EXTREMELY limited knowledge of floating in the sky told me that I shouldn't deploy my chute too early. Anyway, when it looked about right, I pulled the string and out popped this beautifully colored roundish parachute. My fast plunge abruptly slowed to a slow float.

It felt so effortless to fall gracefully from the sky. I swung my legs and remembered thinking to myself, this is probaby what Dave Matthews meant by "Sitting on top of the world with your legs hanging free." (Lie in Our Graves for those of you interested in the name of the song. Prior to this experience, I'd always equated it with any of those hanging rides from Six Flags (like the Superman) or a ski lift or even, perhaps perched atop a water tower or roof of some sort as your legs dangled. Anyway, I kind of went off on a tangent. I felt so free and lightweight (quite unlike my poor hippo friend).

I was even wearing this lovely yellow dress with a black floral print. It was full-skirted, with box pleats at the waist, and a scoop sleeveless top. I remembered it having deep pockets too! Oh and I can't forget the fabulous ribbon belt. Of course, I was barefooted too. So there I am, floating down from the sky like Glinda from the Wizard of Oz (only she was in a bubble, but that's ok) maybe it was more like Mary Poppins, yeah, it was like that. Except my skirt was actually billowed out and I could feel the fresh wind blowing through my hair. I waved at a plane in the distance. It was descending getting ready to land. I could look inside the windows and make out a silhouette of someone waving back. As I neared closer to Earth, the God's quilted patchwork of varying farms became more familiar. Upon landing, I pointed my toes to gently touch bright green grass like I was testing the water of a pool. It was an easy landing, quite the opposite from reality, I'm certain. It was such a great dream. I remember giggling and laughing and then giggling some more as my parachute floated down and blanketed me. It reminded me of when I was a kid and my mother did laundry. Every time she went to make the beds with the fresh sheets, I'd help her. Well, with the top sheet, I would always be on the bed as she would throw it out to spread it over the bed. I'd be caught under the covers and the stiff cotton (yes, they were ironed!) would softly kiss my skin, completely wrapping me up in my mother's love. I actually woke myself up I was laughing so hard! That's the best way to rouse from your slumber, huh?

Anyway, it was definitely much better than what I'd been feeling earlier. Ok, I'm so going to put myself out there, this may be a bit TMI, but here goes: Ever since I started running again after having had the baby, I've had an incontinence problem. I've never had this issue before I had the baby. (Not even when I was pregnant!) I read that this was a very real possibility and I knew to expect it. I've been doing Kegel exercises like there's no tomorrow, but it doesn't seem to help. I'm fine doing everyday activities. I'm ok walking around and walking for exercise. I'm even ok jumping around playing sand volleyball. The problem is when I run. It doesn't matter if I completely try to empty my bladder before I go before running, I just have this issue. It'd be one thing if it were just a little bit, but a little bit over the course of 3 miles is more than just a little bit. It's downright embarrassing and I'm feeling pretty gutsy for admitting it here, but I'm desperate. I guess it could be worse, right? I mean I could have another issue where I poop on myself and that wouldn't be good either! (gross...yeah, that was an unnecessary visual) So anyway, I think I may have to resort to wearing Depends (anyone want to make me a Depends diaper cake? LOL!). Seriously, though, I think I'm gonna buy this ebook:

I go in to see my OB in the next few weeks. If I'm still having this issue, then I'm going to talk to him about it. Maybe he can offer up a suggestion that I haven't thought of. Even better than that, maybe YOU GUYS can offer up something. Seriously, I'm desperate and at your mercy. I need to train for the marathon and seriously put those miles in, but well, you know already. Please help! EEEEEk!

That was awkward, huh?

So, um, yeah...Don made this amazing chicken yesterday. Baked BBQ chicken legs with brown rice that he'd tossed corn in and steamed broccoli. I'm loving these healthy dinners we're eating lately. While I don't feel like I'm losing any weight, I know I'm losing inches. Yesterday, I wore a linen skirt that I'd purchased in London when I went 4 years ago. I remember I only wore it once or twice before and then I couldn't fit into it. Well yesterday, I could not only wear it, but it was a tad loose too! Wahoo!

Have an awesome day!

Tuesday Night

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

We test drove the Chevy Equinox. While it isn't a sexy ride, it is adequate for what we need it to accomplish. Large enough to get around town or travel the distance to Lubbock, Salina, El Paso, Houston, South Dallas, Austin, etc... Lacking the traditional SUV outrageous gas mileage, it is very possible for us to trade in the truck and only slightly feel the pinch from the truck to this vehicle. Best of all, GM is running a 0% interest for 72 months on a select group of cars.

The Equinox is one of those vehicles included with that special interest rate and I'm most happy about the incentive. I guess God has answered our prayers b/c we were uncertain how we were going to be able to buy a car with all of our needs (and some of our wants) and keep the payment to a tolerable level. Since we'll be paying for daycare soon enough, this was quite a predicament. This car will marry functionality with the small list of desires. Even though we are still thinking about it, I think it is pretty much a done deal.

I'm gonna miss our little Ranger! We had some fun times in it when it was just the two of us. Of course, when I was having a difficult time with the back pain, I drove the truck to and from work. It zipped along nicely and I happily drove it in traffic. I felt powerful in it and spunkier. Funny, because it really is a small truck. But it is definitely a mighty-might! We used it to haul plenty of things like firewood, baby stuff, party stuff, groceries, wood, lumber, all sorts of things! But it is definitely time for a change.

Our salesman at the dealership was nice enough. He'd only been selling cars for a month and it showed. I was rather disappointed with his lack of knowledge about the vehicle. I realize he's only been selling them for a month, but still. The information that I learned in the course of a couple of hours of research was much more than he knew that entire time he worked there. It was rather disappointing. To be fair, our very good friend works for GM, so he did point me in the right direction and could tell me somethings that this dude couldn't. Poor man! He'd gotten in the industry because he'd recently been laid off from his long-term job and in his words "he got hungry and had to do something."

Boston Market
The drive-through was packed, again! I don't understand why this place always takes so long (and yet we still continue to go back for dinner at least once a week!). We pulled up and had to drive all around the restaurant to get in line because of the funky angle. There was one car sitting by the speaker and three others in front. We pulled in right behind the car. Four minutes later (yes, I was hungrily giving the clock the stinkeye with every passing minute, and my angry stomach growled) we pulled up for our turn to order. I hurriedly glanced over the menu, even though I knew what I wanted to order. I settled on new potatoes and sweet potato casserole as my sides to the three piece dark meal. MMmmm...I normally get the three sides meal, but I needed the protein. In my head I'm thinking, "I probably should've gotten the white meat with the steamed veggies and fruit. But I don't like the green beans in the vegetables. I don't like the melon in the fruit, so that would only leave me with grapes to eat. So, if I did order that, then I wouldn't be full and I'd still be hungry by the end of the evening." He repeated the order back to us and we pulled forward one car length. There were still three cars before we reached the window. I kissed my beloved goodbye and walked over to Wolf Camera to check out their lenses and get an idea for what I could expect to spend after using my birthday gift cards.

Separate rant: When I walked into Wolf camera and I wasn't greeted. There was a man behind the photo counter. He's the same guy behind that counter every time I go in. I've never talked to him, but I always see him in the same spot doing mundane tasks like stapling or sorting or shuffling through papers. Then, the other guy, the camera/lens guy was out front helping out a woman with the printing of her pictures. I thought the photo counter dude was supposed to do that, but again, I've never seen him do that. Lens dude didn't even look up and say anything. No, "I'll be with you in a minute." Nope. Normally, I don't mind, but I did have some questions. I patiently waited for 5 minutes. In that time, I walked the entire length of the camera, binoculars, video camera, lens case. I took mental inventory of everything they had to offer. I then went to browse the accessories. Piles and piles of bags, memory cards galore, and throw in a sprinkle of ink cartridges for good measure. Still no acknowledgement. My stomach cramped and I looked out the window to see that my beloved was pulling out and headed my direction. I scampered out in a hurried pace. I could smell my chicken, but also, laughing inside thinking that surely I must've been invisible!

I messily throw myself in the car, holding tightly to the plastic bag that carried the contents of our dinner. We get home and unload. I take baby out of her carrier and settle in to eat and watch "Cloverfield." I have baby propped on my left thigh, water an arm's length away, napkin by my fork (no plasticware for us!), when I open the lid to my meal and i'm GREATLY disappointed! In my head I screamed in my best Mommy Dearest voice, "No new potatoes!!!!" Stupid mashed potatoes.

grrr...not happy.

Doesn't matter, though. I know we'll be back there again next week. I'll just have to tell them about themselves and be sure to check the contents before we leave.
Movie Critic Time
So like I said, we watched Cloverfield. Interesting movie. The only part that I didn't like was when the building collapsed and there was mass hysteria. It was all too familiar of the 9-11 tragedy. There were some graphic parts, but not nearly as bad as let's say, Resident Evil. I enjoyed well enough, even though it was anti-climactic. I thought I heard rumors that there was going to be a sequel. Not sure. I also saw Margot at the Wedding. Nicole Kidman does a great job as being an overly critical meddling bitch. Jack Black does a great job being a dramatic putz. Overall, the movie was too boring and not much fun to watch. A few days ago, we watched Lars and the Real Girl. The "girl's" name is Bianca, but that has nothing to do with why I liked it. I thought it was HILARIOUS! But it certainly isn't for everyone. I'm finding that it is actually only a movie a certain few will like. But if you share my sense of humor, then you will like this film.
And for those of you keeping track, yesterday was my day of rest from running. I totally should've done something and l later felt guilty about it, but this morning when I got a full 6 and a half hours of solid sleep, I didn't regret not running one bit. Wish me luck, though! Tonight we bump it up to a full 4 miles.

how to lose weight...

Monday, June 23, 2008

Definitely not by eating cookies, brownies, and drinking Coke!

So my running ideally will help me shed some poundage, right? Seriously, schlepping around my not so toned bod in this 90+ degree weather would trigger the metabolism into overdrive, but alas, I have a vice. I have absolutely no will power!

Today, I ate my usual big bowl of oatmeal for breakfast and chamomile tea. That's good. I also consumed a bottle of water before lunch and another bottle at lunch. Very good. I had half a sandwich, mushroom soup, a small salad (no dressing) with a 1/4 serving of salmon. Not too bad, right? I ate another 1/4 serving of salmon for afternoon snack.

By 4, however, my belly was screaming, aching for SOMETHING, anything. Why am I starving? So I downed another bottle water, a G2 gatorade and started working on the next bottle when I had to pee. I had to walk by the kitchen on my way to the bathroom and it happened. I had two bite sized brownies. I figured that would satiate me, but no. I already had the head bob working, and I knew I desperately needed some caffeine. I picked up a Coke classic and told myself that I would only drink half. (which I did) And when I got back to my desk, my stomach pained again. ::groan:: I broke into my drawer and peeled back the layers, upon layers of scotch tape on my sleeve of thin mints. I'm only gonna eat 2, ok maybe 3, no 4! yes, I'll only have 4. I took out the four chocolately minty delights and proceeded to carefully re-wrap the sleeve with scotch tape. I make it difficult on myself so I have think about what I'm doing before I eat it. Usually, I only have to look at the tape and I'll quickly close my drawer, but not today. For some reason today I needed chocolate. And boy oh boy did that chocolate go SOOOO well with that Coke. the sugary goodness.

Good thing I'm doing that 3.5 miles tonight. Of course, I'd probably have to double that to kill the calories I consumed.

Oh well. It was amazing! I seriously need to drop 15 lbs to make it easier on my joints for all of this running. But the big payoff, I'll be able to see New York in the fall and that makes me so very, very happy!

Tonight, I'm gonna have a ginormous helping of broccoli for dinner and maybe a small serving of tenderloin. Mmmm...Don is such a great cook. Wonder what we'll have for dessert...kidding, just kidding!

Water Baby...19

Sunday, June 22, 2008

She's 19 weeks along and I can't believe how much she's changed in the short amount of time. First off, she tans like me!! (knock on wood, I hope it stays that way!)

She rolls over like an old pro on both sides. First she started rolling from the back to the front, which one of my co-workers told me that way was more difficult since they normally push off, but I don't know about that. What do you think? Also, the raspberries are gone and they've been replaced with this shriek-whistle. Don lovingly calls it the monkey bird! LOL, but it is a pretty accurate description. She so smiley and OMG, I swear, she has the most hilarious personality. When she's happy, she's ridiculously happy, but if she's not, then she'll grunt and scrunch her face up tightly. And when she's sleepy and I try rocking her to sleep, she'll be somewhere between asleep and awake, with her eyes closed she'll kinda grunt-purr like she's talking, not missing a beat while sucking on her paci. It's so adorable.

Anyway, here she is in her cute summerwear. I love that tank! It was on sale at Gap, so I got 2, one in brown and the other turquoise. I've been putting her sunglasses on her head like that so she can get used to having them around her. They are still a little too big for her to wear over her eyes. And the shoes!! OMG...I love those little sandals! When I saw them I had to have them. She will actually wear them for a little while, but invariably, she'll kick one off.

As far as birthday indulgences:

  • We had Moo-yah for dinner. MMmmm...I ADORE their burgers. They give me the happies.

  • I purchased some new trouser pants online. I can't wait for them to come in. I hope they fit well and I can keep them. It is such a crapshoot, you know.

  • I got a new heart rate monitor watch. It not only tracks my heart rate, but it will log up to 50 laps. I only need 26 of them for the marathon, so that will help with counting. It also has 2 settings for time, interval training, alarm function, and heart rate goal. lovesit!

  • So to also offer further inspiration I purchased some Nike dry fit running shorts. And you know what, they are not only comfortable, they are AMAZING for running. I'm REALLY wanting a 2nd pair now.
  • Jason Mraz's new CD which is awesome. If you are fan of his music, you must get it right now!

And tomorrow not only marks my official training for the race, but also researching for the trip in November. Mari will be spending her first Halloween in NYC, so I'll be sure to get plenty of pics of her trick or treating around the hotel, ha ha!

Anyway, I hope you have a great day!

sounding board...

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

yeah, i'm just gonna have a whiny party right now. by the time this blog is complete, I'll be done.

  1. I need a vacay. Seriously, I want sandy beach toes, frizzy hair, flaky skin, and the burning eye salt-sting from the ocean.
  2. I need some new clothes and shoes. I remember a time where I could go each season without wearing the same thing. Literally, the same thing, including pants, skirts, shirts, and undies. Occasionally, I'd wear the same shoes, but even then. Where did all my clothes go? Did I purge so much that all I'm left with is 3 weeks worth of stuff??
  3. I hate that sizes of clothes isn't the same across the board. THIS is why I hate shopping online. Stupid machines don't cut fabric as well as humans do. This is the varying degree of sizing. When I go shopping, I literally try on two of the exact same thing to see which one fits better. Invariably, one is always better than the other. Grrr...
  4. Why are there not enough hours in the day? I need to be running more than what I have been, but I'm not because I much rather do my own mini marathon every night holding my baby.
  5. Speaking of my darling daughter, she's awesome. No vent about that. She's just amazing.
  6. My wrist however sucksithard! It clearly can't keep up with what I need it to do and it hurts like a hammer is smashing against it every time I move it a certain way. It is actually a little swollen, but not bruised. I think I need to go to the doctor because it's been that way for about 6 weeks now. Yeah, my fault for slacking on that one. I seriously think that stretching it will make it better, even though the logical side of me knows it won't.
  7. I need a new vehicle. I love my little Maggie, but she just doesn't cut it on the weekends when we hit the road with more than 2 adults and baby in tow. Some of the GM cars are offering 0% financing right now and the Chevy Equinox is one of them. Not exactly what I had in mind, but then again, I wasn't sure what I had in mind. Thoughts?
  8. Yeah, a vacation is just the ticket. I have mommy brain and the vocab is suffering. I feel like a blubbering idiot walking around gesticulating like a mad woman, saying things like, "you know that thing that does ...." I know I mentioned this as number 1, but it deserves two spots IMO. Poor me, I've not been to Mexico since last year! Boo-hoo. Freakin' John Mayer going to Mexico on a private jet to chill out, not to mention he was trekking all over Japan just chillin' in his head. Hatehim. Same with Jason Mraz too...jetsetting the globe to get back to center. Man, only 4 more years to that elusive sabbatical and off to the shores of Mehico with the bebes.
  9. Speaking of south of the border...I've been wanting a raspa from Bahama Bucks. Tonight, I'm running to the one near my sister's house and rewarding myself with one as a result of that trek. Do it, do it, do it! Oooh...and make it bahamamamarama estilo too! yay-yay-yay-yiiiiii
  10. I sincerely hope the interview with the daycare provider we have next week will be the last one. It is such a tough choice to make and I feel very blessed to have found two EXCELLENT candidates. I need to pray about it and let God lead the way.

With that, I'll end in a prayer. Thank you Lord for all of the blessings you have bestowed upon me. Please continue to guide my feet to make me a better person. Grant all those I love with your grace and I pray for all those seeking guidance, especially those who are lost, may they find you with loving arms. Grant me endurance, strength, health, and wisdom. In your name, Amen.

ahhh...I feel better already.

accountant to chef...

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

My cousin, El Jefe, is pretty amazing. He's the type of guy that exudes confidence, but that doesn't mean that he doesn't welcome any compliments. So, Primo, these next few lines are to brag about you! First off, we grew up together. I'm three months older than he is, but him being Mr. Smartypants skipped a grade or two and graduated before me. For those of you who know him are well aware of how colorful he can be. His adventures reflect his technicolored life as well. I'm so grateful that we've reconnected over this past year. It's been quite phenomenal.

Anyway, he moved here after a long stint at UTEP. He gambled with his future, attempting to break into the Dallas scene by partnering with a friend who ran her own deluxe bake shop. He enjoyed making the cakes, learning more, and applying his knowledge gained from UTEP to the business. But things still weren't rockin' and rollin' like he wanted and there was still something missing. We talked and on a whim, I suggested he go to culinary school. Because for as long as I've known him, the one thing that has remained constant is he likes to be parked in the kitchen. Growing up, I admired him because he was using the stove and fire with such ease and grace, more than I was allowed at that age. Heck, when we reconnected, and I went to visit him for his birthday, he was throwing himself his very own dinner party and let me tell you, that was hands down one of the very best meals I've ever eaten; each course tenderly prepared with delicate love and patience: chateaubriand with a blue cheese sauce, 3 cheese macaroni, haricot vert, perfectly toasted bread, and even though Mari was still Petunia, I tasted the wine that he'd selected to be paired with the food. MMmmmmmm....

Anyway, he said he'd consider it. Next thing I knew, he was enrolled at Le Cordon Bleu and starting his first class. WOWZA! That happened fast. He was knee deep in potatoes perfecting his knife skills. I didn't mind the homemade french fries! All of those special cuts of food had to to somewhere, right? No sense in wasting the food. On top of school, he got a part time job, which actually turned into a full time job. And anyone that REALLY knows him, knows the other love of his life: social drinking. Yes, let's recap. Going to school full time, working full time, and partying full time. This boy was busy. Did I mention that he's my age? Yes, he took that leap of faith to follow his dream and I know he's much happier because of it. How many of us can say that? Didn't you have dreams as a kid? Are you doing them? Me, I can honestly say I'm doing a big portion of what I dreamed about. I still have some looming aspirations, but they will come in time. I got lucky to do what I always wanted to do, but then again, I was one of those kids that wanted to be an astronaut-teacher-writer-professional rockstar manager-fashion designer.

I digress. He works hard. He's tired most days. He's tired like I'm tired most days. But he goes through life with this infectious laugh and such a wonderful outlook. It's hard to not have a good time around him. So cheers to you, cousin! Keep on keepin' on...

cracklin rosie get on board!


Monday, June 16, 2008

Happy, happy, birthday to me...

I had the absolute most amazing weekend (not too mention high caloric, too!). I was overly gluttonous and blessed.

Friday, I took the day off, mostly to recuperate from this nasty cough/congestion I'd been having. Well, I didn't get to really rest and relax as much as I probably should have. I did, however, get to luxuriate at the nail salon. I splurged and got a manicure as well as a pedicure. Love it! I also got to meet up with friends at Taco Diner for lunch. Afterwards, I hung out at the house, painting a terra cotta pot with our address on it. I was feeling artistic and needed to channel that energy. I spent a good portion of the evening sucking on cherry flavored tussin-infused cough drops. It seemed to help. That night, we ate Boston Market: chicken pot pie and steamed veggies. Yum!

Saturday morning, I woke up and drove my cousin to the airport. When I got home, I strapped on my mp3 player and headed out for my "long" run. I'm in training for sure. My goal was to run 7 miles, but I only did half of that. The main reason was because I'd forgotten to take water with me. And of course, it was starting to be one of the hottest days of the year so far! was SO MUGGY and humid. It was so thick outside and did I mention, HOT?? I was proud of myself that I lasted as long as I did. I wasn't as sore as I thought I would be, but it was still nice to be able to go out and do it. I made a mental note to have plenty of water for the next time and to come up with more creative ways for running this summer.

Anyway, I got home and showered and dressed for the day. I was meeting up at La Duni with some friends to celerate my birthday. Because it was the weekend, they were serving brunch and who are we kidding...I was more interested in the sweets than anything else. We toasted with a mimosa and nibbled on some pastries while everyone arrived. Later I had a Lemon 43, which was delightful!! It was hands down the very best lemonade and the fact that it was spiked was even better. Delish! The food arrived and it was pretty good. Then, afterwards, I asked to see a dessert menu...whoa, bring it on. But then they surprised me with this ginormous cuatro leches cake with candles. Mmmmm....

We hung out a little longer and headed to Victory Park for Paciugo. That was my original plan, to meet up for gelato and coffee. The rest of the crew showed up and it was HOT. I was feeling kinda bad (and extra special) for everyone who came out. We lounged around laughing and talking and it was great. Later on, Don and I snuck away to La Condesa (a tequila bar), primarily for him to use the bathroom, but I'd decided I needed a birthday shot. My friend tequila and I haven't chatted in well over a year so why not, right? Well, I got to talking to the bartender and he gave us our shot for free. SCORE!! What an awesome surprise. To make it even better, he infused the shot with a bit of lime juice, chilled it, and gave me a sangrita chaser (like a thick spicy tomato juice). We toasted, shot it, and it went down silky smooth. Loved it. I did a happy dance and twirled around in a circle. That probably wasn't the smartest idea after a tequila shot. We nixed the whole coffee thing and just headed home. It was already 5:30, and we'd pretty much been out and about for the past 6 hours.
At home, I rested up and relaxed. That night, we went to eat at Plano Tavern. Again, I got to meet up with another buddy of mine that I hadn't seen in about a year. We took our time laughing, catching up, exchanging stories, and just celebrating in general. OMG...I had an incredible sea bass. It just melted in my mouth. Just thinking about it right now, I'm drooling!! It was close to midnight when we got home. Because I hadn't been sucking on my cough drops, here came on the late night cough fit. It was awful! =( I had very little sleep and I was miserable.

The next morning, Don had gotten up to go for a bike ride with Will and it gave me time to sleep in. We had to take my MIL to the airport, so when they returned that's what we did. To start off the Father's Day celebration, we headed on over to Buffalo Wild Wings. Mari was mesmerized by the giant screen TVs. She looked like she was in a little trance! We had a little wing snack and then headed back home. Mari and I took a nap while Don and Will ran some errands. When they returned, we had just enough time to clean up and head to an early Father's Day dinner at Texas de Brazil. (yes, I told you we really indulged in some crazy food this weekend!). I absolutely love their salad bar. I was very disappointed with the service, though, and the meat didn't wow me like it has in the past. It tasted overly salted, too buttery, and just not as good as it was in the past. You go there for the meat, not the salad bar. Oh well. Don had a good time and that's what mattered most.

After we got home, I did some laundry to pack up for the week. We are "vacationing" in Lewisville for the week while Don has training and my sister watches Mari. It's crazy all of the extra stuff you have to pack for a little one, you know. ha ha! I was like, man, I didn't even bring half the stuff that I wanted to bring. It just wouldn't've fit. Oh well. Cheers to a great week for all of you!

Lifelong Dream Number 4....check!

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Rounding out my top five things to do in life is number 4: Running and completing a marathon. On November 2, I will have that opportunity!

I've offically committed to participating in the NYC Marathon as a part of my company's team and raise money for Robin Hood.

I'm so FANTASTICALLY excited about this. I seriously was going to throw up when I was given the go ahead. Already, I have those nervous pre-race jitters that I hadn't experienced in a long, long time!

Anyway, when I know more details, I will post information on how you can donate towards the cause. Thanks again for all of your support!

For those of you interested in learning more about the course, here is a link:

Look Around: 5

Catching up with my blog reading, I came across Shannon's blog about looking around and being grateful for 5 things. Here are my five:

  1. Family - This one is an obvious choice, but let me elaborate a little on it. My husband Don for being all that he is and more. Especially for patting my back to help break up all of the nastiness that is building up my chest and for rubbing my feet even though he's had a rough day too. Mari for being a true miracle for Don and I. Her tiny megawatt smile always fills my heart with tender happiness. My sister for always being the example and shouldering that tough burden of being the oldest. My brother for being the occasional comic relief in my life and for letting me realize that sometimes I'm cool. My mother for her constant strength and genuine warm heart to the world. My father for being a beacon of guidance and wisdom.
  2. Technology, especially the Internet(s) - No lie! If I'm feeling melancholy for my little one, I just call up whomever she's with and now, they can log in and I can see her with the web cam. It's not the same as physical touch, but I will take what I can get. I could never imagine being separated from my child for great lengths of time. Thank God for broadband! It further enables me to multitask! Oh, and I love my digital picture frame too. How awesome is it that I can fill the card with tons of photos and relive the moments in each photo, without having a ton of pictures scattered everywhere?
  3. My health - as I glance down at my hands, I notice that they are still strong and nimble. Readily able to do a myriad of things, especially simple things like getting dressed in the morning. My legs are strong and I can walk, no, I can run and dance and jump with ease. Well, maybe a little bit of soreness the next day, but still. May I never take those simple things for granted.
  4. Scars - They remind of me of painful times that I have gone through, and yet, I have persevered! I am mentally able to pick up broken pieces, and like a phoenix, start fresh and new. We all have struggles and adversity, but the true measure of a person's character is revealed when you see them succeed despite it all. I have many fabulous examples to follow in this regard.
  5. My ivy plant, "Verde" - This plant was given to me at my old college job on my last day. I'd worked my way at that business from a receptionist, to an executive admin, then finally, being responsible for an entire region's accounts receivable. Each position taught me valuable qualities that I would be able to leverage throughout the rest of my career. I took this plant with me to my first post-university job, where it thrived and flourished until I was laid off. And wouldn't you know, it imitated what I was feeling. This big luxurious plant withered to one lonely strand. When I got my next job, again, it started to grow, but didn't make it to the great lengths like it was before. When I began to struggle at that job, this plant also struggled. I'd made the decision to leave, and it seemed like this plant got a second wind. Now, at my next venture, it is thriving once more. Happy and healthy, a symbol fow how I'm currently feeling. Ever so grateful for my job and my experiences, and this little plant.

And for fun! Check it out

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

I love Pink Ric Rac's creativity! She's starting a new venture with hand stamped silver charms. Anyway, she's doing a giveaway and I figured I'd post here to let you all know.

Visit Jen's super fab Etsy site here:

Catching up...

Where in the world have it been? Actually, I've been nursing a bit of a cold. I was starting to sound like Selma from The Simpsons. While a scratchy voice can be sexy on someone like Demi Moore, I just sound like an 80 year old smoker. Anyway, my airways have finally opened up, my head no longer feels like it is floating, and now I'm having my coughing fits.

Mari had her shots and was a trooper. Instead of sleeping it off this time, she was actually alert for most of the night. She's a pleasant baby, but I knew her little legs were sore. When we were holding her, if we brushed up against the sore spot, she'd get irritable. But she happily took her tylenol and I guess it took the edge off. I also massaged her legs and had her kick around to get them moving.

Oh man, and hasn't it been HOT??? Wow. We had a co-ed baby shower at Arbor Hills on Sunday and while we were in the pavilion, it was still really hot. Don and I went walking around the nature preserve to set up the scavenger hunt. We had Mari in the carrier and she just fussed and fussed. Poor baby was burning up. We took off her little pants and socks. Thank goodness she was wearing a onesie tank. We had her bonnet on her, but still. She was just sweating away. We were only out in the direct sun for about 7 minutes, but that was enough for her. When we made it back up, we gave her some water and ran a paper towel under the cold water, then placed it on her head. She was a lot happier after we did that. She looked so cute! Here you can see the tank onesie I made for her. I loved that little patch. My MIL and I got very crafty this past weekend. It was awesome! I need to get pictures of all the stuff we made. Prior to coming, she made my BFF a jungle themed quilt. And for their shower, she made her a nursing wrap out of this cute monkey themed fabric. We had some leftover fabric, so she sewed them onto burp rags. I also found this sweet skull with roses black fabric. Think an Ed Hardy design. Anyway, she made a wipes case holder and with the leftover fabric, we made some matching burp rags for him. He LOVED them! It was awesome. Also, I found this DIY lampshade kit. So, Mari now has a lamp in her bedroom.
And last night she spent the ENTIRE night in her crib. This was a first for her. She'd not done that before. Our pediatrician highly recommended we do that now instead of waiting until later. Yeah, she'd been starting out the night in the crib, but then we'd bring her to the bedroom. Last night, we took the plunge and did it. The first time around, she was restless and I don't think she was quite ready to go to bed. She kept rolling around in her crib, and pushing off the sides of it. Thank God I got those bumper pads! Also, Mari likes a lot of touch when she is falling asleep. We placed her buddy in the crib with her to hold onto. It is a frog head with one of those soft blanket bodies. Anyway, she was gripping that, then threw it and I started smiling and cooing. Yeah, she wasn't ready to sleep. About an hour later, she fell asleep in Don's arms, so he put her in the crib, placing her buddy next to her, along with the Wubbanub. We left her lamp on thinking she may like that better. She woke in the night for a feeding, but then I put her right back in the crib and she was out! So exciting!
That's all for now. Have a fabulous day!

4 Months

Saturday, June 7, 2008

It's hard to believe that 4 months have flown by. Wow, it realy did happen in the blink of an eye.
We're both feeling a bit under the weather right now. Poor baby has a bit of a couch, but you know what, she's been extremely pleasant and happy despite all of it. She just sits there coughing and coughing, but then finishes with a smile. So cute!
She's been sitting up like this for a few days now. She's been sittnig on her own leaning against the couch for a while and now she can do it on the floor.


Wednesday, June 4, 2008

So Mari has learned a new trick. She has gone from just blowing bubbles out of her mouth to full blown raspberries. It's so cute and absolutely hilarious! She even cracks herself up when she's doing it. Plus, she's doing this fake coughing thing too. Ahh...she's so funny!

Yesterday was very productive for me. I was able to squeeze in 4 miles throughout the day, including 1 running mile (man, I'm out of running shape!). My legs are definitely starting to firm back up. In my head I'm cheering on my muscles, encouraging them to combat the fat: Push it out, Push it out, way out! Burn it off! Burn it off! Goodbye Fat!

Last night when I was cooking dinner, I missed Mari so much that I just wanted to hold her. Of course, I had to cook, so I put her in her stroller and let her relax in there until she was tired of it. Then I picked her up and explained to her the importance of blending flavors. I added that tomato paste in the tube is now an essential in our world and I can't believe I went so long without it. (Thanks Simon!)

And what of the birthday month? Well, after 8 years, I thought it necessary to finally upgrade my system. My old was was very trusty and I loved it. I'm certainly going to miss the quirks that I've grown to love. Things like not being able to print while surfing the Internet, or run anything with a USB while being connected online, for that matter. My USB hubs were blown out about a year ago. I found a workaround, but still. Anyway, I'm super excited about my new addition! I love how PRETTY it looks on the outside. It's nearly as fancy as all of the wonderful things that will be on the inside too!! Yeehaw! (yes, I really did yeehaw.) And because I love Don so very much, I'd purchased a desktop computer for him too. He needed a new one and I wasn't a fan of the Father's Day present that I, ahem...I mean Mari and Guapo got him. Instead, he'll have a fancy schmancy new piece of machinery that will allow him to conquer all of Rome (a game he occasionally plays). The monitor I bought him for Christmas will definitely be happy with it, I'm sure of it!
Happy hump day tomorrow!

Grocery Day

Monday, June 2, 2008

Today, after work, we went grocery shopping at Kroger. This isn't unusual for us. We like going any time between Mon - Wed. Wednesdays are REALLY great to go because you get to take advantage of both the advertisements. Unfortunately, we haven't been that lucky in a long time to get the two, but that's ok. It's not like we trek off from the outer edges of the store anyway.

Everytime we go, Don and I are allowed 1 luxury item. This is an item isn't on the list and may or may not be on sale. Either way, we are allowed to get it and enjoy. This time I opted for the Laughing Cow Light Cheese bites. When I was a kid, I used to sneak to the fridge and happily nibble away at a piece of sliced American cheese. Occasionally, you will still find me doing that, but now that I'm older, I like a different variety of cheeses. Normally, I go for a Brie or a Smoked Gouda, but this time I was in the mood for the cheese bites. I think the thing I love most is the packaging. The flavor is 'eh...but I love how each individually wrapped of yummy goodness is in this perfect foil cube, nestled comfortably in a simple cardboard tray. That night while packing the groceries away, I nibbled joyfully on the cube. ahh...bliss!

Also, since it's my birthday month, I felt I deserved a little something extra. They had these mini Ben & Jerry's ice cream treats on sale: 4 for $5. What the heck, right? I got one for me, one for Don, one for Carol (MIL), and one for Mari. Who am I kidding, the spare is definitely going to be for Don! LOL. I'm not a huge fan of ice cream. PAUSE FOR DRAMATIC GASP..........I know, I know, blasphemy. But hey, for someone who is lactose intolerant, that's a big deal. TMI, I know, but it comes and goes. I can eat some ice creams and not feel the effects and other times, I'm a thousand kinds of miserable. Fortunately for me, Ben & Jerry's Chunky Monkey has never had an adverse affect and I'm hoping that Strawberry Cheesecake doesn't either. I can't wait. I'm going to eat that up tomrrow after I get home from the train station because it is supposed to be hella hot! I'm definitely going to earn those calories! woohoo!

Oh the the best thing! We finally remembered to take our Kroger shopping bags that we bought a while back. Yes, we took 9 bags in, and we were given a 5 cent credit per bag! Sweet! I had no idea that we'd even get a credit. I was on a mini high. Then, Don told me that we only had to use the bags 20 times to break even from what we paid for them. funny, guy. After that first use, though, I thought they were worth it because it only took us one trip to unload the groceries and because we could sling the sacks over our shoulders, it was a breeze! I'm loving these things!
And just for grins, here's a picture of Mari. She does a pretty good job of sitting up when leaning against things. She's not like most babies who will topple from one side to the next, even if they are leaning on something. I think it is pretty good. What is really funny about this picture is that she's looking right. That's her thing, I suppose. But I do make sure to spend some time working with her to look left to balance out her little muscles.

Hats off to the birthday month!

Yes, it's that magical time of year again! Summer is knocking on the door, bright colors are found everywhere, there's a faint smell of suntan lotion mixed with various fruity beverages. The a/c is cranked up, and all around me are frantic women trying to shed those last bits of winter weight for bathing suit season. And me....well, it's my birthday month.

Yes, most people celebrate their birthDAY, but I say why stop at that? Why only have the one day? I don't require everyone to recognize it. I just choose to celebrate it for myself everyday. Each day I get a new little surprise all for me, and I'm not allowed to feel guilty about it either.

June 1 was a BIG one. I got to go see the SATC movie (loved it) and treated myself to the soundtrack. I'm totally diggin' it and so should you! It's on sale at Target this week. Thanks to, I listened to it all last week in anticipation for what was to come.

Sidenote: I totally loved all of the clothes. I'm really kicking myself for not going the fashion route, but maybe for the 2nd half of my life. =)

Yes, I also treated myself to the Xyron 510 sticker maker. I haven't made any stickers, yet. I bought the magnet refill cartridge, so I've been off making wallet sized magnets of pictures of Mari to give to the family. Who doesn't love magnets, right? I should make some stickers soon, too! I already love this little gadget. I can't wait until we straighten out my craft/office area. I know this will have it's very own cubby. So exciting!! It is very easy to use, you just feed the object, turn the crank and voila! Instant sticker, magnet, laminated thingy, whatever...I love tools that are multi-functional.

Mari and Don got in on the action, too. They gave me this cactus garden in a mug. It is very zen! Earlier in the spring when we were at Lowe's picking out elements for our garden, I told Don that I wanted to make one of those little guys this summer. I didn't know which ones to use, but that I thought they were really pretty. At the time, I didn't get the supplies for it because frankly, it thought each item was overpriced, hence the reason I said I'd make it on my own. Well, he went out and got one for me. Then, Mari, with Daddy's help, made me a card to go with it. Happy Birthday month to be enjoyed at the office. Too sweet.
Also, we ventured over to Ali Baba cafe off of 75 after church. Wowza! They had a buffet and it was sweetness. Normally, I don't venture much off of the grilled veggies or chicken curry, so this was a perfect excuse to eat many different things. The most interesting was a hollowed out cucumber or zucchini filled with rice and meat, then steamed and served with a light tomato broth. It was actually really good and seemed healthy. I ate myself into a food coma!
So now it is time to decide what I really want to do for my actual birthday. I hadn't really planned anything since last year's bash was pretty darn amazing. Then again, it was a monumental birthday, so I needed to blow it out. Anyway, this year marks 31, so what to do? I'm seriously considering an ice cream social (31 flavors, get it?) and a movie marathon, but who knows. It's on a Monday and the weekend before is Father's day, so there's not really a convenient time to do anything. We'll see...
Have a fabulous day!
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