Friday, December 31, 2010

January 2011 Challenge/Happy New Year!

Okay, so most of the suggestions I got on Facebook were P90X but this is a 30 day challenge, not a 90 day challenge, and I don't want to have to buy a whole bunch of equipment and DVD's. I also know my body isn't ready to do both C25K AND P90X together. That would be crazy. I can barely do C25K without hurting myself every other week. So, here's what I did. I made up a calendar for January, with a workout schedule for every day. There is really only one true "off" day, because I plan on doing my Wii Fit as an easy recovery thing on Sundays. So, here it is:

I have decided to throw ZUMBA into the mix on Thursday evenings, since there is one very close to me. There are other diet goals (not dieting, just guidelines for me to follow) to keep me accountable in that department. Alcohol will be cut way back, which is a good move financially as well as physically. I should finish C25K if all goes according to plan. I also included some rewards to keep me motivated, as well as a few meals to have some fun. I didn't want to give up my Sunday lunches with the husband, and I don't want to have to be limited on those days.

I will weigh and measure myself on day 1, and on the last day of the month, but no more. In fact, after tomorrow morning, I'm putting the scale in a place that will make it less desirable to get it out to weigh myself. Maybe the garage...

I will keep you updated every day with what I eat, how I move, and how this all affects me. I don't plan on seeing drastic differences but I hope to see some improvements, especially in the running department.

When February rolls around, I'll start a new challenge! I'm hoping to start Insanity again some time so look to see that as a future challenge.

Happy New Year to everyone--stay safe and have fun!

Thursday, December 30, 2010

Not last minute or anything...

So, I decided this afternoon that I would like to do some sort of challenge in January. So, that gives me a whole day to figure it out :/ Shoulda come up with this sooner...

So, I'm asking you, lovely readers, what could I do? I would like to not spend a ton of money on DVD's or workout equipment. I plan to finish C25K this coming month, ending right before the end of January. I won't need any running goals or challenges. I could, however, use some help in the strength and cross-training departments.

I have several weights of varying sizes, 3 levels of bands (easy, medium, hard), and I wouldn't mind investing in a medicine ball. I also have access to Zumba classes nearby, and Wii Fit and Wii Fit Plus. I also own Turbo Jam and Hip Hop Abs.

Thanks in advance!


I met my friend and her sister in-law at the lake today and I did about three miles. Yesterday, I tweaked an abdominal muscle and I thought it would be better today, but it was nagging me pretty early in the run. By the time I got home, it wasn't nagging me; it was SCREAMING in agony. Lesson learned. I won't do that again.

I'm not dead, I promise

My time the past few days has been spent alternating between scraping wallpaper and cursing the previous owner who put it there in the first place. I have managed to find someone who knows what they are doing with wallpaper stripping, drywall repair, texturing and painting, to help me with this project and to get it over with.

I have managed to complete other smaller projects, like defragmenting my hard drive and getting rid of programs and games I don't use. I managed to burn dinner (it was probably going to be good, too) and I did some score study, which was nice. I do love the pieces the band will be working on for contest.

In fact, here's a link so you can hear one of them, because it's so pretty! Ammerland

Today I plan to go running at the lake with an old college friend. I haven't had a running buddy before so it could be fun!

Monday, December 27, 2010

Holiday cleanup

I spent two hours cleaning out the closet in my office, reorganizing it and taking care of holiday things like ornaments, wrapping paper, and bags. I'm glad to say, that project is DONE!

Yesterday I filled out a membership form for the Oklahoma Food Cooperative. I'm kind of excited! I look forward to farm-fresh organic eggs and occasional grass-fed beef. It's only $50 one-time with no annual renewal. Some co-ops deliver a basket of vegetables that you don't choose and you have to figure out what to do with them. The OK Food Co-op allows you to order specifically what you want, which I really like from which farmer or rancher you want to support! I'm really excited. H of course is ambivalent, but he just doesn't care about much in the food world. As long as he's fed, he's happy. He doesn't really care where it comes from. I'm happy to support Oklahoma agriculture.

I realized something the other day. You know how I was having all of that foot pain/plantar fasciitis? Well, it's gone! I don't even think about it anymore. I never have foot pain. Ever. I think getting active really helped make that problem go away. It's funny how you can have a problem that is so pronounced slowly go away and you don't even notice.

Currently, I'm trying to psych myself up for a run but it's so windy out I might stay in and do Hip Hop Abs. I haven't done it in forever and a little dancing around might do me some good!

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Ready and rarin' to go

Is that how you spell rarin'? Evidently if I add the "g" it is, but, I am from Oklahoma, after all. I've never heard anyone say "ready and rarING to go." Never, ever.

I was all ready to go running, but it's 17 outside. 17. I decided I can run this afternoon! At least there's no wind today.

I'm also all ready to start back up again with healthy eating and consistent working out. The holidays always have a way of pushing into your life in a very intrusive (but delicious) sort of way. I've put a couple of pounds back on, and I can feel it, and I'm ready to drop those and the rest.

I've been doing some reading on Primal/Paleo eating styles and find them to be interesting. It's a low-carb style of eating, but mostly just staying away from grains. You eat a lot of veggies, leafy greens, and protein. You can still use olive oil and butter. Sounds like a plan I can deal with. They also advocate 80% of the time eating that way, but you can have some time to eat other things, like a cookie now and then. So, here's my "Primal" dinner menu for the week:

Beef w/snow peas (PW recipe)
Pork tenderloin w/mustard cream sauce and brussels sprouts
Parm-crusted chicken breast with roasted asparagus and tomatoes
Chili-rubbed chicken w/avocado salad (w/ tomatoes and red onion) and grilled squash and zucchini
Roasted chicken with spicy swiss chard (new!) and a baked potato (not totally Primal but I have two in the pantry)
Cream cheese chicken w/mushrooms and roasted carrots
One night out for whatever.

Breakfasts will include yogurt with berries and almonds and a little honey, poached egg over asparagus (been meaning to try this, anyway), and maybe leftovers or scrambled eggs. Lunches will be leftovers or chili.

So, today I need to clean out the fridge and freezer (need to do that, anyway) while I wait for the temps to warm up to something more sane, and get the groceries.

I was looking at personal trainers in the area, but I think I'm going to hold off a little while and see how I do on my own. I plan on making a calendar that I can use to plan my workouts, and the days are going to start getting longer so I can do outside workouts in the evening. I don't like running in the evening in the dark because there are far more people out. If I could sleep until 5:45 every day, instead of 5:10, I would be much happier. I plan on incorporating much more strength training in, as well. I have seven basketball games to deal with, but not much in the way of evening events or weekend events for awhile, so I should have an easier time of dealing with it all.

All right, I have to go look at the Panera menu and see what they have. Both H and I have gift cards and that's where he wants to go for lunch today. I plan to let me have Sunday lunches as a freebie because I love exploring new places then when we can be relaxed about it.

Friday, December 24, 2010

C25K W5D2 Repeat

No allergic reactions today! It was nice and cool and misty while I was out this morning. Those 8 minute runs weren't as easy the first time I did them, however. But, I've got to keep getting through! I thought I was going to be attacked by a bull terrier down the street, but he has one of those electric invisible collar things and though he was fast out of the garage (where was the owner?!?) he stopped short of the curb. I started thinking fast as to what I could do--hop in the back of someone's pick up?--and was ready to hit the gas if necessary, even though I was feeling a bit fatigued at the moment. Fear is a great motivator. Then I remembered that dog from another time before where the same thing happened. I was glad I could think on my feet, at least.

I spent the rest of the morning scanning my computer for a trojan that I guess Quicktime put on here after its update this morning. And the computer won't read my iPhone. I don't know what the heck is wrong with it.

I had a very late breakfast at IHOP with H and my sis and had some nice conversation. FIL called H while we were there and H laid it out pretty simple that I don't like steak oscar, that I didn't want it, and that we were tired of baked potatoes and that I would be happy to bring something. So now, I'm bringing some sort of au gratin potato (have ingredients, will cook) and an apple crisp with ice cream, that they don't know about. I wasn't in the mood for pumpkin pie. I'm not normally in the mood for pumpkin pie, anyway. So, thanks H, for standing up for me. But I told FIL yesterday that I didn't like steak oscar and that I would be happy to bring something besides a salad or baked potato. H said I wasn't direct enough. Whatever. I offer to bring food and you said plain asparagus, you asshat. I love the word asshat.

So, off to the salt mines, I guess.

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Happy Freaking Holidays, people

I posted this on a board that I visit, and I didn't feel like re-typing it, so I'm just copying and pasting here. Good news is, I'm done with shopping and wrapping. I also got some things for myself, like 2 pairs of gloves for a buck fifty at Target that I can wear when running. I also got cute work socks, as I am sure that wearing work shoes with white crew socks is somehow a faux pas.

Here we go.

Yet again, I am completely miffed by my FIL. We decided that since H and I are going to my family's Christmas day celebration, that we would do Christmas Eve with H's parents. They were surprised we weren't going to be down with my family, but we never stay there. Never.

FIL decided he wants to grill steaks (fine). I offer to bring something and I was told "salad, or you could bring baked potatoes!" We eat effing salad and baked potatoes every single gdamn time we eat at their house. Pork chops, salad, baked potato. Cornish hens, salad, baked potato. It goes on and on. And not real baked potatoes...from the microwave. I find them disgusting and gluey.

So, I suggested I bring a hot vegetable: asparagus. I wanted to roast it. Roasted asparagus and steak are divine together. FIL said he was already going to steam asparagus and have steaks "Oscar" style with hollandaise and crab meat (I find this disgusting). He suggested I could bring the uncooked, unadorned asparagus.

I am an effing good cook. I think it is effing stupid to bring uncooked asparagus to Christmas Eve dinner. I think it's stupid to have the same damn thing we eat every time we go over there. It's a holiday, people. Let me bake, let me do something! I am 30, not a child, and a damn good cook. Better than any of you, which is why I think you won't let me bring anything anymore.

Also, I was pissed at lunch because FIL took out the whole office and they invited me, and I was essentially ignored the entire lunch while FIL fawned all over the administrative assistant (college-age girl) and her ability to eat soup properly and all the amazing etiquette she has and blah blah blah. I'm not asking for anyone to fawn all over me, but it would have been nice to have been included in the conversation for more than a comment that I should bring uncooked asparagus tomorrow night.

I have been in a holly jolly mood up until today. I'm pissed.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Vacation, day 3

Can you believe that I actually got my husband to put clothes away for donation?!?!?! That almost never happens. And he was so authoritative about his decisions. I'm so proud. I got home today and he showed me some kind of customizable closet thing he wants to do now. I think I might be in love.

Yesterday, I got lots of lounging done. And sorting of things. I'm starting to appreciate the value of relaxation. I've realized that I don't really relax enough. I think I do, but now I realize, I don't. Hours of not thinking about work, or cleaning, or work, or school, or work...that's what I've needed. Too bad I've had two teaching dreams so far. Bah humbug.

Last night, I decided to take H to an impromptu fancy-ish dinner out at a local establishment for a holiday present. I haven't actually gotten him anything, save for a small gift under the tree, and felt I should do, you know, something. He paid off my damn credit card and I am now able to say I have my credit in order due to him helping me, so I felt I should give him something. I should have just made a nice dinner for us. It would have been cheaper and we probably wouldn't have been in pain! I got the dessert to go, but I guess it was too much for both of us, seeing as we were both complaining of GI discomfort overnight and this morning. I felt like I had a damn brick in my gut all night. I wanted to burp so loudly...I even entertained the idea of making myself throw up in an effort to alleviate the pain. I felt like we were in that episode of Sex and the City where Charlotte and Harry go out for a fancy French dinner and end up with food poisoning. In case you don't know what I'm talking about, here's the scene:

Today, after dragging my butt out of bed (I get so lazy after just a couple of days), I went to the IL's to watch my mother-in-law. She had surgery two days ago to have a piece of her hip bone placed into a vertebrae in her neck.

Yes, you just read that. Ouch.

Despite what sounds like copious amounts of pain, MIL was doing quite well. We watched Dead Like Me on Netflix, Life as a House (great movie), and I took Callie for a walk around the neighborhood. I came home and H had brought me a bottle of wine. Score for me!

I think tomorrow it might rain, which makes me want to run in it. I love the rain, and it has been so dry here lately. The lake I pass over on the way to my in-laws' house is almost a series of islands, given the amount of drought we've had. The dry weather cracks in the backyard hurt my feet. My pansies are screaming for water and I've been too lazy to water the poor things much. I also found a "mud run" event in the spring I want to sign up for. Rolling around in mud sounds like way too much fun to pass up. So does running in the rain.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

I love Vacation

Yesterday, I took advantage of the warm day and took Callie to the lake and Petsmart, bought stocking stuffers for all the pets, cleared out clothes for donation and cleaned up the bedroom. I also took some valuable time to watch more episodes of Dead Like Me and to play a little Fable III.

I caught myself in the mirror yesterday and realized I looked rested. What a difference a couple nights of good sleep will make.

My body is SORE today, though. Wooooo. I think I stretched this morning and realized the upper body soreness, and I brought my leg up under me on the couch and felt my quad streeeeettttccchhhh. Ouchies.

Today's plan is to put up all the laundry (since H seems hell-bent on not putting his up!), go through his part of the closet and put a bunch of stuff on the bed for him to sort through for donation (again, hell-bent on not doing it), deep-clean my bathroom, clean the cat room, go to Target for a few things, and that should be it. I'm sure there will be plenty of breaks in there, as well, for tv and video games and reading.

So, for now, I'm out.

Monday, December 20, 2010

C25K W5D1 Repeat and the return of an old arch enemy

I decided that break was a perfect time to get back into my running habit. I set out this morning, in the light for a change, and in weather that was around 50 (instead of 25). It seemed perfect. Even the wind seemed to die down after awhile. But, I was visited by an old arch enemy: Cholinergic urticaria. Holy shit.

It's like an exercise-induced allergy. My whole body turned red and I was on fire. I almost called my H to have him come pick me up halfway through so I could get a Zyrtec. I pushed through, though, and only skipped part of the cool down because I was at my driveway. I came in and freaked him out a little bit by how red I was. He suggested I take a hot shower. That was funny. Seeing as it is started with a rise in body temperature, I think a hot shower would be a bad idea.

But, I got through it. I can feel my body cooling off now. I'm almost cold. Other plans for today include taking Callie to the lake, cleaning the house, hopefully finding a missing shirt that I will probably want for Christmas day, and playing some video games or watching more episodes of Dead Like Me.

Dinner plans are a crockpot roast, so I should probably get that going now, as well. I might take Callie to Petsmart to get stocking stuffers. I love not having any real plans.

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Kelli's 31 for 31

Like last year, I have decided to post 31 goals to reach for my 31st year of life. These goals reflect changes I feel I should make, adventures I should try, and current trends I should continue.

1. Stop being a lazy cook and get in the kitchen, even when I'm tired. I usually enjoy what I cook more than what I would get out.

2. Make H clean the kitchen more with me after dinner.

3. Be a more engaged and engaging piano instructor.

4. Stop being afraid to hurt certain peoples' feelings and tell them what I really think when they ask. No one spares my feelings.

5. Read more books. Fiction, non-fiction, educational, whatever. I don't read nearly enough.

6. Go to some concerts at the local universities. There are all these great performances and I hardly ever go. I have a DVR for a reason.

7. Finish C25K and do speedwork, then move to Bridge to 10K.

8. Sign up for and race at least 3 5K's this year.

9. Sign up for and race at least 1 10K this year. (Either 8 or 9 can be in a relay)

10. Continue my journey to enjoying the smaller things in life that bring joy, i.e. sunrises/sunsets, caring for flowers, little things like that. I have noticed that I feel pure joy when taking in these very subtle but amazing things.

11. Learn a new instrument. I should get my clarinet fixed and work on that (when I say "my" clarinet I mean my sister's old clarinet from high school. Yamahas last forever and they ROCK!).

12. Quit being such a nag.

13. Continue to foster my new friendships at work. I have this amazing lunch group and I fear we will be separated next year. Very rarely have I been able to be in the company of other women near my age, who feel the same way I do about so many things, and who genuinely laugh at my lame attempts at humor. One of these women has surprised me so much and another I feel is a long lost sister. A third is one of the smartest people I have ever been in the presence of in my life. A fourth has the ability to make me laugh. I feel honored to eat lunch and attend happy hours with such wonderful women.

14. Be more supportive of my husband's efforts to continue to improve his alma mater fraternity. He is the chapter adviser and though sometimes I feel like we are back in college when I never saw him on Sunday and Monday nights, it is important to him, and so it should be important to me.

15. Become a more savvy shopper.

16. Save up and buy another lens for my camera (perhaps a more snazzy general zoom lens? I think so.).

17. Stop breaking my wedding ring.

18. Prove once and for all that my school building is haunted (okay, okay, I know I can't do this but dammit, I believe!)

19. Receive a glowing review when the assistant principal reviews my journalism class. (I got a glowing review on my band rehearsal first semester so I'd like to continue that pattern).

20. Continue trying a new recipe every month.

21. Be more open to trying new cuisines. I will not, however, force myself to eat organ meats or sushi. Other than that, I should try it.

(at this point I asked H for help in coming up with goals. His answer? "31lbs for 31! Each pound could be a goal!). Thanks, H. While I would love to lose 31lbs, I don't really want to set that kind of goals for myself. I'm afraid of what the disappointment would do to me.

22. Continue working to be a more stable person, and to keep a hold of my struggle with depression. (someday I might actually write a post on all of that...)

23. Continue to delight in the triumphs and successes of my students. Can you believe that students I taught my first year ever are already in college? That my first editor ever graduates this month? (December 2010). I feel so lucky to get to work with such amazing students...or rather, people. There was a day at the end of the fall semester when I realized that I am loved and appreciated by my students (at least some of them), and it was the most minuscule of things they did to make me realize it. However, it means the world to me that they seek me out in the hallway to talk to me, and make it a point to stand next to me, and want me to stay and talk with them after school. The world.

24. Do more to take care of myself. Get more massages, or haircuts, or take care of my feet more than I normally do. I'm terrible about all of this.

25. Take a vacation, even if it is just a small weekend trip to Dallas. No vacation in 2010 at all sucked!!!

26. Re-invest myself in strength training. I don't know why I quit, really. I was enjoying seeing the strength gains I had made.

27. Actively save money. We don't save nearly enough.

28. Keep a cleaner house, especially my office, which is a mess at the moment.

29. Be less hypercritical of others. I know I said in #4 that I was going to stop coddling people, but sometimes I find that I am overly critical of others, especially my husband. I am also overly critical of myself.

30. Finish the little projects around the house--curtains, hanging things, photos in frames, etc.

31. Continue to enjoy my new found outlook on life. I've noticed in the last year or so that I approach a lot of situations differently, and that I remain more calm about stressful situations, and that I am generally more accepting of my life. I think part of this is that my brain finally grew up (I read an interesting article the other day about brain maturity and how long it really'd be surprised), and so I have finally become the person that I am meant to be. I like this person. I like the no-nonsense, no sugar-coating, honest person that I have become. I like that I don't stress out to the point of anxiety attacks and illness anymore. I think I'm going to like this.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Christmas shopping is like running

Either you're a marathon runner, or a 5K kind of person.

I'm a 5Ker. I like to shop in short spurts. Yesterday, we hit up WalMart for $10 worth of gift bags and tissue (had a gift card...I spent $9.75 ha), Kohls for wrapping paper, a doggie stocking for Callie, and two gifts for an aunt (all on deep discount plus a 15% card that I got to keep for today if I want to go back), and Borders for books for several people. We also made a couple other stops that weren't Christmas-related and had lunch in under 3.5 hours. More time was spent navigating traffic than anything, I think.

Today, I'm going to head out again and get a small gift for H, and then to the mall for gifts and some stuff for me. I managed to redeem $50 toward the balance on my credit card and I'm waiting for a reimbursement for most of the rest. I only spent about $50 yesterday! I've got birthday money to burn, as it is, anyway. So I'm going to take advantage of the sales and buy myself a belt.

Why a belt, you ask? Well, I'm wearing one of H's right now and it's so nice to have my jeans stay in place. I'm constantly yanking them up and it annoys me. When I first got them, they fit great. It appears they have stretched (dang jeans and their stretch these days) and now I'm a jeans-yanker.

I had thought about going running this morning, until I saw the wind chill was 8. Holy shit.

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Is it break yet?

Only two more class days, and 3 half days of finals. I'm excited for break! I have got to start Christmas shopping, though. I only have three presents and basically no wrapping paper or bags. Sheesh. I love Christmas but I kind of suck at the whole planning thing.

Concert was a success. We were able to get a bass clarinet to borrow and the injured one is fixed, amazingly. There were some things about the concert that seriously pissed me off, but I've hashed that out so many times already that I think I can move on! Suffice it to say that my band parents are AWESOME and I'm glad I have them and not the parents from certain other groups.

I haven't been running yet. My left knee has been giving me trouble, especially on stairs. I tweaked it Wednesday somehow but I have no clue what I did. I'm still having shoulder/back problems and still need to get a massage! School has just kept me so busy. It looks like this coming week will be warmer, and with the stress of everything gone (except Monday's yearbook deadline which we are NOT prepared for), I think I'll be all right.

I am so looking forward to break. I have to take care of a couple of different family members who are having surgery for different things, but other than that I'm free!!!!! Time to get my office back in order. Time to deep clean my bathroom. Time to try some of those time-consuming recipes I've been wanting to try forever. Time to get a haircut. Time time time. I love it.

Today, we have got to get some Christmas shopping done. I think I'll take H out to lunch as an incentive! He took me out to a favorite place of mine after the concert Thursday night (just a totally spontaneous thing, very sweet) so I thought I could return the favor. Other than that, I have nothing planned today, either. I'm starving right now, though, so I think it's time for some breakfast.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Disappointing myself

I can't seem to drag my ass out of bed! I know I shouldn't be too disappointed in myself, but I can't help it. I was doing so well! It got cold so, so fast. It seems like there's no gradual change into seasons anymore. It's as if someone flips a switch and we're in winter. Right now the weather says 19 on Saturday morning with a high of 55. While I have a hard time believing it's going to be a nearly 40 degree difference from morning to daytime high, it's still going to be cold. I need more long-sleeved wicking shirts. I just have one.

My shoulder is slowly getting better. Someday I'll have the opportunity to go to the bank and cash out my birthday gift money from my MIL and GMIL and can use that to go get my much-needed massage. I think after concert would be great.

Yesterday was not the best of days for me. I had to put up with some silly requests from a director borrowing our auditorium for a concert. They wanted to piano dusted. I don't know what that was about. I had a dentist appointment that didn't go so great. My student's bass clarinet might be irreparable and I don't even know anyone that I can call for a loaner. I can't finish my promotional video because the last kid I have to shoot has laryngitis. I had all kinds of technical computer problems yesterday at the end of the day. Yearbook spreads aren't coming together fast enough. We have no money to print a newspaper. I have a band student that acts like being in rehearsal is literally killing them. And I'm PMSing, hard-core. Which also makes me not want to run.

So, at this point, I'm just trying to hold my head up high and get through this. Things always have a way of working out, it seems. I just hope that it continues working out for me.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

What's my motivation?

Or rather, where is my motivation? This cold weather has me retreating back to bed each morning. I have the mental desire to go out and run, but I feel like my body is pulling me back to the warm, cozy comfort of slumber. I have got to get back out there. I still have a few episodes of vertigo upon standing after sleeping, but mostly, it's gone. I still have that nagging shoulder issue but I hope to get a massage very soon now that I'm no longer on medication. I sure would like to have that knot out!!!

It's concert week for me, and therefore, a little stressful. Not too bad. Even if we're terrible, the world will keep revolving around the sun and I won't melt into a puddle of goo. We just have to get through it. I wish I had a more positive attitude but there are some issues that just aren't resolving (rushing tempos, slacking on articulations, flutes not getting their part right 50% of the time). I can't go practice for them. I feel like individual achievement for band students is no longer a priority because they are all spread so thin. Well, some. Many of my band kids are only involved in band...what the hell is their excuse? I have those that diligently practice and get everything right, though. I try to make sure they know that I appreciate their efforts. Sigh.

I don't have much else to say. Since I haven't been running there isn't much to talk about. Work is busy, I have to find time somehow to shop for holiday presents, and I'm not home nearly enough. Such is life, I suppose. Sometimes I feel like Charlotte from Sex and the City: "Sometimes I think how nice it would be to spend an afternoon glazing a bowl." A sad existence, yes. But I would like to know the ability to relax and not think about anything except the one task at hand. My brain is constantly going a mile a minute, thinking about all the little things I have to do at work and at home, and I can't make it stop. I can sleep, though! I can shut it off then, at least. I'd be screwed otherwise!

Sunday, December 5, 2010

I'm alive, I swear!

Yeah, it's been a long week. Yesterday was crazy-busy, too. I'm still getting over the dizzies, and until I feel confident enough, I'm not running.

Yesterday, after going to judge All-State prelims (so organized, so fast!) I went to see HP7 part 1 with H and my sister. SO GOOD. I was holding back tears at the end. And at the beginning. I forget how Rowling just kind of offed her characters without a lot of fanfare in that last book. I'll have to re-read it, I guess. Anyway, when the movie was over, and we stood up to leave, I was standing just fine. Totally still. Next thing I know, I'm falling over left and H caught me. I have no idea what happened! Pretty funny, though. Not nearly as embarrassing as the time I fell up the stairs behind my sister while going to our seats. She didn't even stop. Which is better because when you draw attention to it, it's just worse. She just kind of yelled over her shoulder, "You all right?" and kept moving. Hahahahaha. I saw some teenager do that a couple months ago so I can at least say I'm not the only one!

Food this week has been TERRIBLE. I didn't even cook dinner until Thursday night. I didn't have anything for lunch and everything tasted "off" from my meds so I kept getting stuff out in an effort to get something I could taste! So, I felt pretty gross. And medicated. And not up for much.

I did, however, win a ticket to the Thunder game tonight. I will be going with some students, the counselors, and a couple of administrators. It's going to be so much fun! The kids get to meet a player, they get shirts, all this cool stuff. I'm going to be there to take pictures, as well. I feel the need to legitimatize my being there. Silly me.

So, this week I am going to make more dinners, except Thursday night, which is our concert. I hope that all goes well. It's always so crazy! Here's my meals for the week:

Chicken sandwiches on whole wheat buns w/homemade honey mustard, sweet potato fries
Pork chops, long grain and wild rice, green beans
Salsa chicken on low-carb tortillas, spicy pinto beans
Beef stew and crescent rolls
Grilled chicken w/pan sauce, mashed potatoes and brussels sprouts

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Sidelined....yet again.

Inner ear infection. That's why I kept getting dizzy! It all started to be eerily reminiscent of an inner ear infection I had a couple of years ago or so. The PA at the clinic was a little confused by me because I don't have any pain, though my ear was (and probably still is) quite red. I was prescribed amoxicillin (gentle antibiotics) which were only $3! And decongestants. They were supposed to be 2x a day, but all I have is 24 hour Claritin-D so that'll have to do. I think if I take it in the morning I'll be able to sleep. I hope.

So, until I get this balance thing under control, no running. I'm doing my best to not run into things just walking around. I noticed yesterday I can't park my car straight! It looks straight to me, then I see it in the lines. Whoops.

Last night was the last home bball game of the semester! W00t! Tonight I'm meeting some ladies at a Mediterranean place for dinner. I might try falafal. Anywho, it's getting late so I need to start my day. Yay.

Tuesday, November 30, 2010


So. I've been experiencing vertigo for the past, oh, week almost. Every time I get up from laying down in bed, and now when I'm laying down in bed, I get dizzy. My balance has been off, and I've run into things more often than usual. It's bad enough with my monovision, but I've managed to hit things pretty hard, including my head!

I didn't pay as much attention to it the first couple of days because I was still sore from the waist down from the 5K. I thought maybe I'd imbibed just a little too much over the holiday (I'm still not ruling this out) but it all seems eerily reminiscent of an inner ear infection I had I think three years ago. It doesn't feel like a hangover. I have actually been thrown back down into bed after sitting up in the middle of the night to go pee. And now that I'm feeling the world spin around me while I'm in bed (only after a couple of glasses of wine, which doesn't do this to me), I'm getting suspicious. Especially since I had sinus pain a couple of weeks ago. My last ear infection was brought on by allergies I didn't even notice!

I'm trying to figure out when the hell I'm going to go see a doctor. I have a basketball game and jazz band after school today, a faculty meeting tomorrow, and flute sectionals on Thursday. I would hate to wait until Thursday, especially if I need antibiotics. I think I'm going to ask to go in the morning either today or tomorrow so I can go to a doc-in-a-box and get checked out. I didn't really like my primary PA that I had for awhile (the one who put me on the antidepressants) and since she moved to Edmond, I don't really have plans to go see her. I need to get a new one. Blah.

I don't know what I'm going to do. I don't like feeling "off" like this, especially with so much going on! At least it's the last bball game of the semester tonight so I won't have to worry about it anymore until January. Yay!

Monday, November 29, 2010

C25K Week 5, Day 2

Not the best I've ever felt, but expected since I ate nothing but CRAP all holiday break ha. Too much dairy yesterday. No big. I just realized I forgot to stretch. Baaaaah.

Back to work today. I'm not very good at taking breaks at first but once I settle in it's nice. But, usually I don't get settled in until right before my break is over. Baaaaah again. But, it's just a few short weeks, a concert, a basketball game, and 2 yearbook deadlines and then I get two weeks to rest.

I would type more but I'm suddenly ravenously hungry so I need to continue my morning routine before my stomach eats itself.

Sunday, November 28, 2010


Hopefully it's only temporary. I could probably go run, but I think I'll just take it easy. My neck and shoulders are killing me :( It hurts to look down. It just hurts, all the time. I woke up this way. I mean, it was hurting a bit yesterday, just on one side (left shoulder gives me problems sometimes...pinched nerve) but I asked H for a shoulder rub last night and now I'm like this.

That's probably the last time I ask him for a shoulder rub. Ouch.

Today, we're going to my sister's place for a non-Thanksgiving get-together to have bbq, mac and cheese, spinach salad, and some kind of cheesecake. I'm thrilled. Her new boyfriend (I'm going to call him that for simplicity's sake, I don't know if that's what she's calling him) will be there so we'll finally get to talk to him. He came to my birthday at the chicken place but there were a lot of people and it was so loud! I wish I felt better, but whatever.

I also noticed this morning that my pulse is really slow. I measured 54. I know that's technically too low, but I've always hovered around 60. Maybe all this running is getting me in better shape cardiovascularly. Which evidently isn't a word, according to my spell check. Whatever.

I'm going to have to get in the kitchen soon and start making antipasto, mac and cheese, and salad!

Friday, November 26, 2010


Whoo! Things got pretty tight last night in the groin area. I used to think groin pulls were easy to get over, and always foo-fooed those who complained about them, or scoffed when professional or college players would be out with a groin injury.

I was uninformed, evidently. This freaking sucks.

However, things are much better today than yesterday, and I assume the same will be true tomorrow. I don't think it's a pull, necessarily, just aggravated, and wondering what the hell I was doing yesterday. Calves and shins are pretty much a-ok today. I will wait until Sunday to hit the pavement again, however. Just in case.

My actual time yesterday was 45:47, which means I ran a 14:66 mile, which isn't awful. I also realized how little I walked yesterday. 4-5 blocks tops. No wonder I hurt!

Today has been nice. We had a nice morning together, went to El Reno and had a fried onion burger at Sid's Diner (truly excellent), got some music at Pender's, and now there are cupcakes waiting to be frosted and the Christmas tree is up waiting to be decorated. Chili for dinner and Toy Story 3 tonight.

I would like to do the Sandridge Santa Run on the 4th, but if I do it, I might just do the 1 mile fun run and maybe take Callie along. I don't think I want to do another 5K so soon. I think a little training might be in order. Plus, it's only $10 and I can dress up!

Thursday, November 25, 2010

She's going the distance

But not going for speed.

I came in around 46:00 which isn't what I had hoped for, but I got through it! I ran much more than I walked, actually. My body is currently protesting and I am eyeballing the aleve next to me. The tendon (I guess it's a tendon) that joins your leg to your body around the crotch region is complaining big-time. It started nagging me around the last 1K but I pushed through it as best I could. My right calf is sore, but I noticed several times that I wasn't running with the same style that I had worked for the last couple of runs. It's going to take some getting used to, I guess.

All in all, I'm pretty g-damn proud of myself for not only signing up and going, but actually finishing, especially considering how freaking cold it was this morning. I was wiping my eyes the entire time up the north-facing stretch. I ran that entire stretch back with the wind at my back. I'm proud of myself for running as much of it as I did, however slow.

I doubt I'll hit the road again until Sunday. I need to ice/heat and stretch and recover. This is by far the most I've ever run in my entire life. I can't believe I waited until I was 30 to do that.

ETA: H and I took Callie with us, figuring it would be a good way for her to be exposed to more people. After a couple of walks around the block before starting, she calmed down. Evidently she made a lot of friends while I was mid-race, but when I got back, I immediately found H (perched on top of some stairs in plain sight, so I could find him easily, no doubt). I climbed up a couple of steps and the next thing I knew, I was being Callie-hugged with full force. She nearly knocked me over! I thought it was really sweet that she was so happy to see me, even though I wasn't gone that long!


That wind ain't playing around! It's not as cold as they said it would be but that wind is awful. I might have to dig around for a pair of gloves before I go!

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Sweet relaxation

I love breaks. I "heart" them. They always come when you need them the most.

Today I took Callie for about a 2 mile walk over to the lake and back. Turns out that the lake is so low that it has a beach now! I found a clam shell. A big one. Callie ran up and down the beach. She would go after things I threw for her but wouldn't pick them up. I don't think she liked sand in her mouth. It's warm and humid today. The sidewalks are wet even though it hasn't rained. Tomorrow will be a different story.

I'm worried I'm going to totally fail, but I guess you can't really fail at walking/running. I mean, you just put your feet out and go. I do have a history of screwing that up, though! But, nicely paved roads should prove easier than the trail hiking where I last sustained an injury while walking over a year ago. Well, wait...I'm lying. I hurt myself before I even got on the trail. I tripped on a hole on the side of the road that led to the trail. Pretty pathetic, eh?

Today my plans are simple. Lunch with H, get tires checked (that pressure light has been on far too long but nothing's changed on the tires as far as I can tell), drop off wedding ring for repair (I broke a prong...gah), go to Target and try and find one of those Pledge pet hair picker-upper things, go pick up my running packet, make a squash casserole for tomorrow.

I was somewhat upset when I was asked to bring squash casserole. I can do so much more, or something more challenging, than a basic casserole. But, H's mom never lets me bring anything that would show off any kind of culinary aptitude. H thinks she's jealous! So, I'm going to fancy up my casserole. I'm using zucchini (the squash were big, which means big seeds and I hate them), which I will roast instead of steam, I plan on making a cheese sauce instead of just dumping shredded cheddar in, and I'm going to mix in imported parm and panko into the cracker topping. How's that for a fancy casserole? Take that, MIL. I also might stop by the grocery store and get items for some sort of dessert. They only ever have pies and I get sick of them (plus, I just don't really care for her pies) this time of year, so I might do some gingerbread truffles or something.

Tonight for us I'm making P-dub's (Pioneer Woman) chicken scallopine with pasta. It's so yummy. I love having the time to actually put effort into dinner.

Time to dry my hair (I've been having lots of dreams about drying my hair lately, hmm.) and get out the door. Yay for breaks!

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Taking the plunge

I registered for the downtown Turkey Trot, in hopes that I wouldn't have to run half of it straight into 15mph north winds! So, it's a done deal. $30 I won't be getting back.

I need to find something to keep my ears warm. Guess I'll have to swing by Academy tonight or tomorrow and see what's available.

Today is Bedlam Day at work, so the kids and teachers will be facing off in their crimson and orange. The prom committee is putting it on to raise money for prom, and the sponsor is originally from Maine (hasn't been here even a year yet!) and she called it "maroon" in an email and was quickly corrected. Pretty funny stuff.

Otherwise, I am so happy that it's Thanksgiving break. Yeah, my journalism class is way behind and isn't going to get a unit on newspaper design. Yeah, my band could be farther along on their holiday music. And yeah, I should be further along in my C25K training. But, all of that goes away when I think about the possibility of just lounging with H, watching movies and putting up holiday decorations after turkey day. I'm no good at lounging by myself; last night I got so bored while he was out I resorted to South Park reruns and going to bed at 9pm. I'm lame.

Monday, November 22, 2010

C25K Week 5, Day 1

Well, that went better than expected! I'm both nervous and excited for the Turkey Trot on Thursday. I just now found the stuff for the one in OKC, so I'm having a hard time deciding if I should do the one in downtown OKC or the one in Edmond. Both are fairly flat, but one runs more north and I know it's going to be cold! I'm just not sure what to do, but I have to make a decision soon! I keep thinking, I can do this, I can do this. And then I think, what the eff is wrong with me? I just started! But I felt like I could run longer this morning than I had to. The 5 minute intervals don't seem that long anymore.

This morning was kind of spooky. The wind was blowing hard and there were low clouds zooming across the sky over the full moon. The wind kept rustling things, making me think there was something around me and the moon made everything all glowy. I didn't like it at all!

I don't really have much else to put in here today. Keep an eye out for my "31 for 31" post as I am working on 31 goals. I could certainly use some ideas!

Sunday, November 21, 2010

As the year comes to a close...

I believe I will change this to my 2011 Accountability Blog. I plan to create 31 goals for myself for the year; some small, some big; to help me continue in my progress in being a better person, runner, and teacher. I will gladly take suggestions from my readers for these goals, or for ways to improve this blog, as well.

Last night, H and I were talking about this running program, and an old friend of ours who has been doing it with great success. They were quite obese and have lost quite a bit of weight in the short time they've been running (I believe they started losing weight first, though; regardless, they look great!) and how the scale almost never moves for me. The entire last month has been the same 2 pounds lost, gained, and lost again. I know why it is--diet. But I enjoy food and try to keep it reasonable. I don't usually eat huge portions of food. I try to limit desserts to a few times a week. But, I love food and I don't always love salad! Despite not having lost any weight, H has noticed differences in my body, specifically leg strength and other things during "sexy time," as he put it. I guess I hold differently. I've lost belly fat; I can see that on the tape measure, and that's my biggest goal: lose the belly fat. It's unhealthy, it's why my clothes don't fit, it's why people ask if I'm pregnant (which hasn't happened in a very long time).

He also said my face is way different, and I agree. I was looking back and some old pictures recently and noticed that. I'm happy with that.

Anyway, this post isn't really for anything. I did my W4D3 run yesterday and felt pretty good. I'm still waffling on the Turkey Trot, but I have until Tuesday to decide. I might as well just do it and push myself and get the shirt!

Oh, and I am loving the freeing feeling of having no more credit debt on my major card. My grocery card is up next!

Friday, November 19, 2010

Been feeling run down

So, you haven't heard from me. I took the last couple of days off to just rest in the evenings. It's been really nice to do that. I just couldn't shake a low-grade headache and fatigue. Wednesday I was fighting just to keep my eyes open on the drive home at 3:15, which is scary. I occasionally will push myself too far and end up really sick. I've learned the warning signs, like the headache, so I can avoid full-on illness.

I still, however, need to learn to say no or to not go crazy with obligations.

So, I haven't run since Tuesday but I think I'll be getting out there this evening. I am going to pay off my big credit card today and feel much better about my financial situation. I'm going to wear all purple and be a "Nerd" (several teachers and I are the candy Nerds) for Nerd Day at school. (I figured I already am a nerd and unless I just carried my flute around all day no one would know I was dressed up). And dang if these purple fleece pants aren't incredibly comfortable. I think I'll be lounging in them quite a bit.

For now, I need to work on my graduate project journal that I haven't updated since before our concert last week and get ready for the day. This has been a long week with all of the out of uniform days for spirit week. I love spirit week, but it's really dragged on this week, especially with block schedule. We'll all survive, though.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

C25K W4D2

So, I was right. It was my foot strike. I worked hard yesterday morning to keep my feet hitting the ground the way said to in the videos, and I had nearly nonexistant leg pain. Most of what I experienced was just muscle fatigue, like I had done too many calf raises. It was an entirely different feeling and in a different place on my leg. I think I found my stride :) An online person suggested some calf compression sleeves, so I'm going to check those out sometime to see if they work.

In other news, we had another basketball game yesterday, along with our first (and only, really) pep assembly. It's becoming exhausting to take photos, keep up with over 40 band kids, and take video. My yearbook and web design kids need to step it up. I think I got some decent video last night. Don't know about photo yet. Most of my band kids did a good job. The crowd actually responded to them at the assembly which helps. But, I'm happy to put it behind us for a little while and focus on holiday tunes. We have just one more honor band audition on Saturday and we're done with that.

I'm just so tired right now, though. I'm so ready for next week's break; I need it. While I find myself unable to really relax when I have free time (I feel like I should be doing something), I crave it. I'm so tired I don't even really want to eat; I'm forcing a banana and some OJ right now and I'm not digging it. I didn't even want to open the fridge to scoop out some leftovers into a container for lunch. This is not how I normally am. Obviously. I love to eat and even that's getting beaten out of me.

I don't know how long I'll stay at this school. This is my 6th year there, amazingly. I can't believe it's been that long. I've always said I'll stay at a school as long as they need me. I would have stayed a few years at my first job, even though it was crappy, because they needed me. I don't know how long my school now will need me. I'm always doing new stuff and while that's great, the new stuff is starting to take everything over and I don't have the time or energy for my old stuff, like band. I don't know how to make administration see this.

I do have some good news. I'm about to get a very large sum of money so I can pay off my credit cards and be DONE. All I'll have to do is pay tuition but since I'm not taking anything in the spring, I'm going to wait until after Christmas so I can feel free to shop (within reason) for holiday gifts. My graduate adviser thought I was supposed to graduate in December, and had emailed about comprehensive tests. When I said I was just over halfway and had another year, he said, "Well, I guess it just seems like you've been underfoot for so long." Um, okay. Yeah, I'm doing the THREE summer program you designed. It's been two. Deal with my existence, jerk.

Okay, I have to drag my exhausted ass to work now. Holiday tunes and promotional video making ahead.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

C25K W4D1 Repeat

Well, I got out there this morning and tried again. My legs were still so very tired. I still feel like my lungs could go for a lot longer, and my heart (though it's kind of scary how fast my heart rate is. It's still in a healthy range, I just don't normally feel it get that high!). It's just my damned legs. So, I'm going to try an experiment.

1. I am going to do everything in my power to hydrate myself at every turn. Even though we have no working fountains on my floor and the fridge water dispenser is a pain in my ass. Even though it'll make me have to constantly pee.

2. I'm going to eat a banana before I go out running in the mornings. Potassium is great for muscle cramps.

3. I am going to keep focusing on my foot strike. Today I could barely feel or hear my feet hitting the ground. I want to keep that up. I'm reading conflicting information on how the foot should hit the ground. Some say between heel and midfoot, some say more on the ball. I find if I try to run more toward the ball of my foot, I kind of "shuffle" along. I'm going to talk to the cross country coach at school and see what they say. Or maybe even a cross country kid!

4. If I don't see improvement, or rather, feel improvement, from the above, then I'm going to take the birthday money my mom gave me and go to a running store and have them analyze my gait. It's a last, and possibly expensive resort, and I kind of wanted that money for "fun," you know?

I really think it's the foot strike coupled with hydration. We'll see, though. I'm always open to suggestions!

Oh, and about the run--it wasn't the best, and about the last 20 seconds of each long run I checked the time (both at 22 seconds left ha, so weird) because it seemed like an eternity. My legs got tired before I even started to jog, really. A friend suggested I get more strength training in, and since I haven't been doing that much lately, I tend to agree with her. Something else to work on, I suppose.

I'm seeing a difference in my face in pictures. God, my face was fat there for awhile. It looks like the weight I've lost since February seems to have all come from my face!

Saturday, November 13, 2010

The craziest, most exhausing week of my life

There is a reason you haven't heard from me. After honor band auditions on Monday night (home and dinner at 10:30), a basketball game Tuesday night (home at 9:30), a concert Thursday night (home at 9) I was WIPED. My body just refused to do anything but shut down. I gave the C25K a rest this week because of all the pain I felt Monday morning. I'm hoping that after the rest things will be better. I might see if I can convince H to work on that muscle for me instead of spending $50 at the massage therapist.

The band was well-received at both the basketball game and the concert, especially the jazz band. My principal asked if they could perform at halftime at a basketball game =D I told her sure, if we could find long enough extension cords! I'll probably look through some music today and see if I can find anything they can easily work up for next semester's games. There's just no time between now and our next concert. The concert overall was a huge success. My band parents provided so much food and they decorated the tables and made everything so lovely. Unfortunately, no orchestra or choir parents provided anything, and that burns both myself AND my band parents. They provide so much for the program (dinners for basketball games, dinner/movie night was ALL band parents even though orchestra "helped") and they are starting to notice the one-sided nature of this game. I know what I need to say to fix this problem, but I can't say it in a nice enough way. I'm too close to the situation.

I'm going to try and get out there today and run. It's supposed to be sunny and 54 and I'm adoring that. I might get some yardwork in, too. Tonight I have a girl's night at a local restaurant that I LOVE. I was invited to a girl's night! H said he was "proud" or something like that. I think he's happy to see me have good friends.

So, that's the update. I slept like 9 hours and we're getting our microwave installed today, so I have to go clean the messy kitchen so that can happen. Yay! 90 second bags of Uncle Ben's brown rice!

Wednesday, November 10, 2010


I have managed to work 30 hours in 2 days. With honor band auditions Monday night (got home and had dinner at 10:30pm) and basketball game last night, I'm flat worn-out. I did not get up and run this morning. In fact, I felt some pain yesterday in my leg where I've been having trouble running so I thought maybe slowing down might not hurt.

It's certainly not going to help my waistline. But this week I will have worked about 60 hours when all is said and done, and I don't really care right now. I think I have earned that right.

There really isn't anything interesting for me to talk about. I had kids make the honor band Monday night, and we had the game last night. Boys won, girls lost, but they played two different teams. The band played and it was okay. Not our best. I got a call from administrators about 9:30, right after I got home, telling me I still had band kids at the school. I was livid. How could their people not be there after the game had been over for 30 minutes? I sent an email to parents and I hope it isn't too ill-received, but I was hot. I'm debating how much time I want to take out of rehearsal to talk about it today, but we have a concert tomorrow night.

So, for now, that's it. My life is work, my work is my life. After this week it won't be so bad. I don't know why I thought planning a Veteran's Day concert was ever a good idea.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

It looks like we made it...

Isn't there a song with that line in it?

In other news....I'm 30! Holy freaking crap. I didn't give any kind of run-down on Friday morning's run, so here it is.

It sucked.

Then my husband tried to kill me because he thought I was a burglar. His alarm clock reset itself an hour early a week too soon and he thought I was coming in at 4:45am, not the 5:45am I have been coming in at. I laughed at him. All is well and now we have a (very) funny story to share with friends when I feel the need to poke fun at my sometimes very serious husband.

My right calf is giving me all kinds of hell. I plan to do some light cardio today, maybe a walk, and reeeeeeallllllyyyyyy stretch it after and see if that helps at all. This coming week's running plan is kind of nuts and there's more intervals so we'll see if I'm ready for Week 4.

I can't believe I'm on Week 4.

Now, onto other things. My 30 before 30. I actually accomplished some of them, others I failed miserably, and still others I sort of held up or accomplished, or am now getting around to them.

I never had a girl's night. This one slips by me every year. I used to have them once every now and then but weekends get busy fast for people.

I didn't lose all the weight. I have lost some, though, and I know my doc will be happy to see the number has gone down, though it isn't by much.

I am more active, thanks to C25K. I tried other things this year, like Insanity, which were great, but I think I need to get in a better place physically before really tackling them.

I didn't try a new veggie or fruit every week; however, I did try a lot of new ones. Some I didn't like, others are in regular rotation, i.e. Brussels sprouts. Of all things. I just had to learn how to prepare them properly!

I bought clothes, but honestly, I had to. And I need to buy pants right now because some are too worn out, buttons falling off, and they are fading into new, unpleasant colors. Luckily, I got a 30% of card to Gap, Old Navy, and Banana Republic from our awesome sub at school for next weekend! I can use the card at all three places as many times as I want those three days. So cool.

I don't eat out less. Life is making it to where we eat out more. Bad.

I did get a hold of my finances, then the flood happened but H is going to help me with that later this month and hopefully, I'll have a grip on them again. It's going to be a lean Christmas for people, though. Sorry about that. I'm sure everyone understands.

Hahahaha practice more hahahahahaha. Yeah, right. I'm the worst band director, ever, because I hardly ever practice.

Things I did well included making new friends (I decided to hell with the "not from work" clause because frankly, it's stupid. I spend quite a bit of time with them. However, I have made some friends from an online forum so I did actually do this for realz.), I saw more movies, I saw my sister more often, I grew some vegetables (I made a WHOLE salad out of them!), I tried a lot of new recipes, I got my garden in the front going (time for the back, it was pretty wrecked post-flood), I have been spontaneous and I'm finding that as time goes by, little things like being a bit late don't bother much, I'm doing better about sharing "war stories" about teaching and instead, share the happy, uplifting stories more, I continued grad classes and am in the middle of a grad project (jazz band), and I have started to find myself a little more outside of being a teacher.

So, I consider the whole project a success. I learned from myself and from others. I learned that failing IS an option and the world doesn't end if you do. I'm learning balance, between my life and my job and with myself. I think I will do this again.

31 before 31? Can I do it again? What do you think?

Oh, and you probably want to know what I did for my birthday. I ate fried chicken, and fried okra, and had a blast in a hole-in-the-wall chicken place in a tiny town with friends from work, H's friends, my sister, and their friends, siblings, and significant others. I laughed, stuffed myself silly, watched men walk around wearing foil hats, and celebrated not getting older, but getting better.

Here's to a healthy, happy, and fantastic upcoming year of being 30.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

C25K W3D2, and my scale is a big fat tease

Yesterday morning, I hopped on the scale (I'm keeping track of my weight in my calendar...watching it go between the same 3 pounds. Blah) and it read a number which was 8 pounds lighter than the last number I saw. I knew it was a fluke, but still....seeing that number made me yearn to see the number go down overall.

Damn tease. I stepped back on and got a more realistic number. I have to do that with my scale most of the time. Two tries to get the right number, three if I get two completely different numbers.

I ran yesterday morning, and could see both dippers and the crescent moon rising. Quite peaceful. Damn if I wasn't slow, though...I must have been walking at a glacial pace. I got through it without any fanfare (no fist-pumps this time, just mental celebration for a break) but I was way behind by the time I got to the cool-down. I was fine through the halfway point.

My calf was bothering me quite a bit so I think that's what slowed me down. I checked my heart rate during my first 3 minute run and it kind of scared me, so I started working on breathing, as well. I had no problems slowing it back down but it's been awhile since I got my heart rate up like that! Not since those Insanity days, at least.

So, that's the update. I have an afternoon workout today of HHA Cardio and Ab Sculpt. I've been neglecting Shaun T lately, and the weights. Gotta get on that.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010


I just realized I have basically NO TIME to go and vote today! My voting place is right next to my house, which is about 20 minutes from my school. I have jazz band after school from 3:15 to 4:30, then a parent meeting from 6-7. That hour and a half sounds like enough time, but I'm worried I won't get back in time! I would go on my way to work, but I told a student I'd be in my room by 7:15 because he's doing a podcast and needs everything set up, and I forgot to do that before I left yesterday.


There will be no workout today, either. Dinner's going to be in the crockpot because today is just nuts!

Monday, November 1, 2010

C25K Week 3, Day 1

I can't believe I actually did that! I was kind of concerned when I got up that it was going to be too much. I felt like I wasn't rested at all and it was pretty damn cold. I actually went out and turned right around to go get my fleece vest. I was cursing the thin t-shirt until I got warmed-up. My calves got a little tight during the 3 minute runs, and lordy, I am slow. But, I got through.

The cheesiest thing is I actually did a double fist-pump in the air when I finished my first 3 minute run. I'm slightly embarrassed by that fact, but the time went by so quickly! And besides, at 5:30am, as Julia Child would say, "Who's to see?" The 90 second jogs seemed longer for some reason. I felt so good this morning driving to work.

The cardio part of it isn't a problem for me. I feel like my lungs could go much farther than my legs; it's always been that way for me with running. I think part of it is being dehydrated. I also think part of it is a fear of opening up and getting shin splints, that my gait is causing part of the problem. Mostly it's my right calf. I think I'm going to treat myself to a birthday massage on Thursday to work that out.

I didn't lift yesterday as planned. We ended up going to my in-laws for dinner. The ONE time I decide to buy a turkey breast and make a Thanksgiving-ish meal, and that's what my mother-in-law makes! How weird. She actually did a good job. It was juicy, at least. It wasn't a bad meal. Very comforting. My t-day meal this week is going to be an herbed roasted turkey breast, roasted brussels sprouts, and (stove top) stuffing. I don't like dressing and I'm not going to make it on a weeknight! I'm oddly looking forward to it. I don't even like turkey that much!

Saturday, October 30, 2010

C25K Week 2, Day 3

Well, somehow I got through that! It's pretty dang warm outside, considering how late in the year it is. I guess I'm also used to running in the morning. I am going to have to get used to running in the cold; highs this coming week are going to be in the 60s and lows in the upper 30s or so (hallelujah!) so I might get to enjoy my new tops. I don't have much in the way of warm bottoms, though, but I think keeping the core warm is more important. Organs and all.

I realized after the first run segment that I most definitely chose poorly when it came to my sports bra today. The girls weren't too happy with me.

I just realized I forgot to stretch! I should go do that. I'm still waiting to find out if I have a ticket to the OU game or not. If not, I have candy hand-outs to do and a Halloween party to go to. I'm in high demand ;)

Off to stretch/ice!

Well, that didn't happen

I took the dog out yesterday afternoon after I got home for my W2D3 run and after the first run segment, my body was screaming "NOOOOOOO!" at me so loudly, I ended up just walking the dog for half an hour. The vet also called me about Anchovy in the middle of that, so I would have had to have stopped, anyway.

I think that 13 hour day was more brutal than I thought. I have honor band auditions today (I hate if you have ONE kid auditioning, you still have to go judge!) until this afternoon but hopefully I'll be done in a timely enough manner that I can come home and run. It's not like judging is hard work. It is on the ears but that's it ;)

But, at least I got some sort of activity in yesterday. I also realized, right before dinner, that I had never had breakfast. I think that was part of the problem, too.

Yesterday morning was "parent breakfast" day. The parents bring us breakfast. There was a day when there would be tons to choose from; the economy has definitely hit our breakfasts. I had planned on eating, hoping there would be good yogurt, fruit, maybe some granola, or a potato thing...there was an egg thing (if you learn anything about me, then learn that I am very picky about eggs. Poached or scrambled only, and I really don't like how anyone else makes them besides me) that the smell of turned my stomach upon impact, English muffins but no jam, yogurt that was laced with aspartame (don't eat artificial sugar), fruit but the only thing that was left was cantaloupe (makes my throat itch and I don't really care for it), bagels (don't care for them at all), and some sort of mystery pastry. I reached for the mystery pastry and my god, the thing was heavy as lead. I took one bite and as the pastry reached my mouth, I think my pancreas started to quiver in fear of its upcoming task. That one bite let me know that I would have a migraine if I even attempted to eat just a quarter of that thing, so in the trash it went.

I had OJ.

Friday, October 29, 2010

Thursday, October 28

No workout for Thursday. It was Dinner and a Movie night at school! The kids had such a great time. One of the parents even made me take a phone picture with her for facebook.

I was dressed as Julia Child and I must say I did an awesome job. I had a blue button-down, black flared skirt, black pumps, black apron (folded the top down), fake pearls, and I folded a dishtowel into the apron. The best part was that I even made her gourmet school badge that she always wore and pinned that to my shirt. It was fabulous. I walked around saying "Bon Appetit!" for the entire evening. You should be proud; I avoided most desserts and just had a little brownie that was actually one of the ones I brought. I had one enchilada, some rice, and chips and salsa (it was all so good it was ridiculous). There were SO many desserts. I was worried we wouldn't have any!

So many students didn't get it. I was sad. *tear*

13 hour days usually mean I get a workout break. I was going to get up and run, but after that 13 hour day, and a disagreement with my husband, and the fact that it was 37 outside and the coldest I've run in was at least 10 degrees warmer than that, I just wasn't ready. I get done early today because I have to pick up Anchovy from the vet (teeth cleaning...he's going to HATE me after), so I will go for a run after I get home. I might take the dog with me. My legs should be pretty rested by that point, too.

So, that's the update. Weight's staying the same, which given what I've eaten this week (too much pasta) I'm not surprised. At least it isn't up. Anything is better than up. I did, however, get a compliment from a teacher. She said I looked thinner around my shoulders.

I'm not surprised. It's the first place to lean out on me. My freaking shoulders. But, I guess lean shoulders make for good pictures, at least from the bust up. Hahaha.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

C25K Week 2, Day 2

I have got to make a deal with myself that I won't do anything lower-body focused on days before I run.

This morning was a glorified power walk. I just felt frustrated because I couldn't get my feet to pick up! I am noticing a difference in sleep habits. When I'm doing a good job working out, I don't have to go to bed quite so early, even if I'm getting up at 5:10. I was easily falling asleep around 9:15 or 9:30, within minutes of me turning off the tv or my head hitting the pillow. Now I wait. And wait...and wait to fall asleep. But I'm only getting about 7 hours a night. I don't feel overly tired, though I'm sure right now I could go back to sleep.

So yeah, I finished it. I'm not happy with myself or how I ran but I got through it. That's the important thing.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Tuesday, October 26

Nothing exciting or extraordinary today. Did a sort-of workout of the HHA Total Body dvd and started to have some pain on the inside arch of my foot. I'll work through a lot of pain, but I'm not screwing around with my feet anymore. Worked up a sweat, at least. Better than nothing.

The firewall was up at work today and I couldn't get anything done. All I wanted to do was to go to jwpepper and write down the arrangers of the holiday pieces I wanted to order through our local company and it was BLOCKED. "Music" was the reason. Of course it has music, people! They sell legitimate copies of music for high school performing ensembles!

Gah. Guess I'll be sending angry emails to the tech guys. Gah gah gah.

Monday, October 25, 2010

C25K Week 2, Day 1

Man, I had the worst Sunday-night-insomnia last night. I hate that. I looked at the clock at around 12:15 and thought, wow, 5 whole hours of sleep. Yaaaaaaay.

Despite that, I did get up and run. I'm having some issues with my calf around my ankle on my right leg, but otherwise I'm doing all right. The first 90-second run had me a bit breathless but I got a grip on that pretty quickly. I thought I added some distance as I went a different route today, but after using Google's pedometer, I was actually a little shorter. Weird. Oh well, things to work on later.

As it is, I'm now running late after playing with Google's pedometer, so I have to get ready for work. Why did Fall Break have to go by so fast?!?!?!?

Sunday, October 24, 2010

It's over...

Fall Break is almost officially over. It went by far too fast. I'll just have to suck it up until Thanksgiving.

I love my job, but it is exhausting! People who gripe about kids or teachers being out of school too much should really try teaching. I know other jobs are exhausting, but nothing will wipe you more than working with students. Even college students. I remember once, my alma mater (my freshman year) decided there would be no fall break. Did the students revolt? No. We certainly complained but knew our complaints would fall on deaf ears. The collective faculty, as I understand it, made the administration realize that their decision was foolish, and fall break has been there ever since.

I haven't worked out yet today. If I do anything, it will be some Wii yoga. I haven't really tried it much and my body is pretty worn out! Otherwise, it will be a boring evening.

Speaking of boring...gotta go clean the kitchen and put a few things away. I need a cleaning fairy.

Saturday, October 23, 2010

C25K Day 3

Finished my 3rd day! I was faster all around, was able to open up more with my running, and beat the app home by a minute and a half!

I even had to stop twice to work out a cramp in my right calf muscle. I learned that hydration is very important. I also know now why football players writhe around in so much pain from muscle cramps. I will make sure to not run after being dehydrated again. It made it a lot harder.

I came in and had to put a heating pad on that calf and my left shoulder, which is still nagging me a bit. I never got a chance to go in for a massage. My sister did a great job last week. I should just put her up here in my house so I can bug her whenever I want. Ah, that would be the life.

Nothing on the docket today. The workout was my main thing. I might convince H to go to a movie later. OU game tonight!

Friday, October 22, 2010

Contingency plans

Well, this morning I thought I was going to be able to go out and run...and then I checked the radar! That didn't happen.

I did get a lot of things cleaned around here, and I had lunch with H and his friend J at Iguana. So tasty. We had some good laughs. I stopped by Target on my way home and found some great cold-weather clothes, and a couple of Duo-Dry $6 t-shirts for running. Score!

Unfortunately, I've been feeling kind of pukey this afternoon, inexplicably, so I lifted but anything on the floor (chest presses, for example) left me feeling like I was going to barf. Perhaps I ate too much at lunch.

I pushed my C25K to tomorrow; sunny and pleasant, according to the forecast. It's already starting to clear. We needed the rain, though. Yesterday, the dirt kind of "poofed" around me when I watered my new pansies. I scratched my forehead and there was dirt under my nails. Ew. I figure H and I will get in the backyard and do some work, since it's a total disaster right now.

So, that's the update. I really like my clothes. But, I'm resting up for my run tomorrow (as if it's really hard or something ha) and hopefully a beat-down of Mizzou in the evening!

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Fall break, took a break

I decided that in lieu of working out today (planned upper body heavy lifting) that I would move that to Saturday. Or tomorrow, if it is raining, which is likely, and move C25K to Saturday. Whatever works.

Listening to my body, I felt TIRED. Not unexpected after four hard days! I worked out Sunday, too, but I didn't put that in here anywhere, I don't think. So, I decided to just do the planned yard work I had written down, take Anchovy in to get his teeth inspected, bake a cake, and make a big ol' southern chicken fry dinner. I could go to sleep right now, yup.

I'm hoping to get to run tomorrow. Maybe even if it's raining, I'll still run. I don't really have the appropriate clothing for that, though...hmm. Shopping time?

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

C25K Day 2

Wow, I was SLOW this morning. I reached about the same halfway point, but somewhere between there and back, I slowed way down. I was 7 houses down when the timer ended, instead of 2 like Monday morning.

However, I think that slowing down on day 2 seems like what would happen, normally. Plus, my lower half is TIRED from yesterday's workout. I'm lifting heavy upper body tomorrow and giving it a break. Plus, I have lots of cleaning/housework/yardwork to do so that'll keep me pretty active.

I slept great last night. My sleep cycle was low and steady for most of the night...until the dog wanted us to get up at 4:30. We ignored her and she went back to sleep. I might take her with me on Friday if the weather's nice.

Tonight I'm going to a place for Ethiopian food. Wish me luck. I'm not quite sure what I'm in for!

Oh, parent teacher conference day has turned into "receipt yearbook sales, clean tables, listen to holiday music for band, and discover you might have a crazy student" day. Like how I just slipped that in there? I have a student whose current event for Journalism was laced with misogynistic comments about Sarah Palin. Not only did they ignore the assignment's parameters, their comments were completely offensive and bigoted. I was appalled, and so was the counselor and principal, both of whom have never seen this side of this particular student.

I decided it was time to educate them. After all, that's what I do. I don't even know where to begin digesting what's going on with this kid. So, for now, I'm ignoring it and am going to go look at cold-weather workout clothing.


Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Tuesday, October 19

It was a good day :)

We increased our yearbook sales from 46% of our goal to 58% of our goal today! The kids love coloring in the books on their wall goal chart. You know the ones where you fill in until you get to 100%. This one has books. We love the array of Sharpies you can get these days for this very purpose.

I got my workout in this evening as planned. HHA Hips, Buns and Thighs. Wow, painful. I crossed my legs today and felt how tight the inside of my legs are, where they meet the body. I didn't know my abs were sore until Shaun T. made me do something that involved them and I said, out loud, holy shit.

I forgot how much running engages your core. And when you have a core like mine that doesn't get engaged all that often, it doesn't take much!

But, despite the pain, I got through most of the workout fine. Tomorrow morning is another run/walk morning, Day 2 of C25K. I really think I'm going to sign up for the Turkey Trot. It's far enough away that I have time to get prepared enough, as long as I stick with this. And if I have to walk some of it, I walk some. I can't find the map of where in Edmond it takes place, so I don't know how hilly it is. Everything's pretty flat out here on my side of the city so I might have to plan for that.

I felt pretty rested today, just a little sore, and I felt like I had enough energy to get through my workout with more to spare. I was good yesterday until about 8:30 and then my eyelids started to droop. I was here alone, too, so it made it easier to just pack it in and crawl into bed. I hope to have more energy after awhile, and I can feel a difference every day that I do work out; I just have to get up so damn early that I crash early.

Basketball game days are going to kill me. Blah. At least there are only 4, all in November, to get through.

Monday, October 18, 2010

C25K Day 1

I arose at 5:15, managed to get out the door fairly quickly (after scrambling around trying to find all my workout clothes. Next time I will lay them out!) and enjoyed a fairly easy stroll/jog around the neighborhood under Orion's Belt. It was a breezy 55 and perfect.

I came inside and started to put my lunch together, thinking I had some meatloaf muffins in the freezer I could use and nope, none there. It would take too long to cook a piece of frozen chicken so I'm going to risk leftovers from Thursday night. Eeeeeeek. I have a three-day maximum usually on those things. I should have planned better!

Gearing myself up for what will surely be a long day, since it's a short week. I have three piano lessons after school. Hopefully my percussionists will be in line today instead of a nightmare like last week.

Enough about work, though; it's pretty much all I talk about these days...

How 'bout them Sooners?!?!?

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Trying something new tomorrow

I've put together a calendar for the next month and a half, almost. I figure if my schedule is going to continue being as crazy as it is, then I'm just going to have to schedule my workouts.

If I have to schedule any more, I'll be scheduling my damned sex life. Gah. Does life ever slow down? Does work ever slow down? It just seems...busier...this year. I can't quite get a grip on it. I definitely can't get a grip on how fast it's all flying by!

My sister gave me a good shoulder massage today and helped work out some of the issues I've been having. I need to get some tennis balls so I can use those and the wall to work out my shoulder blade problem. Since fall break is coming up, I plan on scheduling a massage then, too, to fix this problem.

My foot hasn't been bothering me the last two days, which has been nice. I feel like I can actually work out, and the mornings are nice and cool, though dark...but, I'm going to take advantage of them. The time will change soon, anyway. I can always borrow H's reflective vest and I plan on staying in the neighborhood for awhile.

I have a lot planned in my head for fall break, mostly cleaning and yardwork that I just haven't felt like dealing with. I come home and I just crash. My days have been mentally exhausting.

I'm going to have to cut out the wine again. I noticed a couple of little welts that will become psoriasis if I don't cut it out. Damn. It's a trade, though. Itch or sobriety. What a crappy decision ;)

I'll reveal more of the calendar later. It's getting late (for me...when you wake up at 5:15, 9pm is bedtime!) and I have a family guy iPhone game to conquer.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Sweet, I actually got up and did it

I tried not to push too hard, since I still have the nagging pull in my back, and HHA really uses your back muscles to work the core, but I got through it! I wore my heavy-duty sneakers to work yesterday so my foot isn't bothering me too much this morning.

Not really much else to say. Yesterday wasn't the best of my work days; band was a little discouraging. It's strange to see friends just let each other drown in their music without helping. A percussionist is having a hard time catching up after leaving the program for a year (he was never really taught to read...oy) and one friend did jump up, but he couldn't figure it out, either. And it's simple "boom-chick" march kind of stuff. I'm going to have to figure out some way to help him because he's drowning and we have a concert in less than a month!

All right, I've got to keep this short--workouts always eat up my morning time ;)

Monday, October 11, 2010

If anyone's been wondering where I've been...

I've been injured. Freaking plantar fasciitis and last Saturday I woke up to extreme neck/back/shoulder pain. I have no idea what I did there, but I still can't look down without it "pulling."

So, not much exercise has been going on. I'm frustrated because I can't even lift. All of the strength gains I had are going to just go away. I had just gotten to the point I could stand to work out in the mornings.

I did manage to find some shoes that help my foot. I got up this morning to try and it was just excruciating. And there's nothing except months of stretches that I can do about it.

So, I haven't been blogging because talking about being frustrated with my lame-ass body doesn't further anything. Posting how horrible I've been eating doesn't help me. I'm not exactly feeling inspired.

I do, at least, have a reasonably healthy menu this week. My weight's been creeping up on me and again, I'm frustrated with it. So, I guess I'm just going to have to cut waaaaaay back on the calories until I can work out again.

I plan to go get a massage soon; financially, I can't justify it, but I'm going to have to, so I can function again.

So, that's the update. Creeping closer to 30 and my goals just keep slipping out of my fingers. I can at least say I'm still under 190.


Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Hip Hop Abs, baby

I ordered a new cardio routine from BeachBody: Hip Hop Abs. The instructor is Shaun T, the same guy who does Insanity. Luckily, this one isn't as brutal, though the first time through the routine this morning had me staring with little question marks all over my head because my body just didn't understand how to step-touch to the side while alternating arching and rounding my back and pumping my arms.

Gee, it sounds so easy when I write it out.

However, I could feel my abs working, and it was a lot of fun, which I need at 5:15am. Shaun T is hilarious. In Insanity, you just see him be a badass. In this one, he proclaims that "Dontcha wish your girlfriend" is his song. It's pretty funny. I could almost see him walking up and saying, "Hey, girrrrrlfran."

In other news, work is CRAZY. Home is crazy. Well, not crazy but financially stressful, still. I've started up piano lessons and picked up a student--one of my percussionists! I love it when they show an interest like that. I've not taught a student his age in a looooong time, and I'm so used to tiny little hands and he has these huge man-hands that barely fit in the keys. He won't be a viruoso but he has the goods and the will. He was also concerned about getting me paid on time, which is nice. I do like getting paid on time.

My husband is doing well on his weight-loss efforts. He's within 15 pounds of my weight, which is kind of scary for me. And, of course, incredibly frustrating. He goes out and rides his bike, makes little changes to his diet and the fat just melts off. He's the example that doctors always make. I, on the other hand, could do the exact same thing and do like I did this morning--gain two pounds for water retention. Seriously, I can barely get my wedding band on and off. It was loose yesterday! Guess I need more water. But, he's happy. And he has finally given up the pipe dream of landscaping and building a retaining wall in the backyard with a buddy. They were just going to do it one weekend. Because we all know that was going to work. I'm a little scared of the cost, but if we get it done soon, I can put in bulbs for the spring.

Anyway, this has been a bit of a rambly post, so I'll move on. Anyone else ready for fall? I'm tired of the makeup melting off my face first hour while I feel sweat literally running down my back. It's icky and I'm tired of it! Bring on the fall!

Sunday, September 12, 2010

I'm a failer, oh well.

Looking at my 30 for 30 list, I've miserably failed at some, and I've thrived with others.

I have managed to make non-work friends. Not close friends yet, but ladies with whom I can have a real conversation and enjoy food without judgment. I appreciate that.

I have tried new fruits and veggies, and at the end of this post I'll list fall fruits and veggies that I plan to try. I've even come to like one unlikely green suspect: the brussel sprout. It's H's favorite veggie and I've been denying him all this time, just because I had never prepared them myself. I find I much prefer them from fresh. They should be getting better now that they are coming into season. Summer was hard to come up with things I haven't already tried that were in season. Fall and winter veggies and fruits aren't as difficult as we usually just subsisted on canned and frozen summer veggies back home during the cold winter months haha.

I had to buy new clothes, and I'm not exactly on track to fit into my old clothes, either. However, unless I wanted to look like a homeless person in the classroom, then I had to buy clothes. I shopped the sales as well as I could (hello, Land's End Overstocks and sales! And Ross!) and came up with a reasonable work wardrobe that fits reasonably well and was reasonably inexpensive.

I have lost weight, especially since my yearly check up when my doc started to give me a little side-eye. I still have to wonder why it's so damn hard for me to lose weight. I feel like there is something working against me. It's not hypothyroid, but there are other things that have gotten me thinking. I'm not going to get into it here, but if I'm right, it sure would explain a lot. I hate to be the person who thinks something is wrong and blames that for weight gain and then it turns out nothing is wrong and the person is just a fat-ass who can't say no to brownies. Harsh words, I know.

I'm still in progress of controlling my crazier tendencies. I had a total meltdown today when the sink backed up and H managed to splash me with liquid-plumber-laced back-up water. *shudders* I freaked out and stripped off my clothes on top and started washing off my arms where it had touched me. I still smell of bleach. Granted, it was nearly noon, I hadn't eaten and had been up for nearly four hours and was feeling shaky, and the PMS is in full swing. But man, that was crazy. It was my second outburst of the week but I've been feeling financially frustrated and some things have happened at work that have royally rubbed me the wrong way. A girl's gotta vent, somehow.

Anywho, here's my list of fruits and veggies that I haven't tried:

Artichokes produce a second, smaller crop in the fall (the first go-around is in the spring) that tends to produce small to medium artichokes. (I haven't cooked with them)

Beets are in season in temperate climates fall through spring, and available from storage most of the year everywhere else. Fresh beets are often sold with their greens still attached.

Belgian Endive are mostly "forced" to grow in artificial conditions. Their traditional season (when grown in fields and covered with sand to keep out the light), like that of all chicories, is late fall and winter.

Broccoli raabe, rapini is a more bitter, leafier vegetable than its cousin, broccoli, but likes similar cool growing conditions. (I've never found it here)

Brussels sprouts grow on a stalk, and if you see them for sale that way snap them up - they'll last quite a bit longer than once they're cut. (I have seen them this way! I'll be trying them more and more)

Celeriac/celery root is at its best in the cooler months of fall, winter, and early spring (except in cold climates, where you'll find it during the summer and early fall). (not really looking forward to this one...)

Chard like all cooking greens, chard turns bitter when it gets too hot. Chard grows year-round in temperate areas, is best harvested in late summer or early fall in colder areas, and fall through spring in warmer regions.

Chicories are cool weather crops that come into season in late fall (and last in temperate climates through early spring). (how am I going to use this? and can I find it?_

Chiles are best at the end of summer and into fall. Dried chiles are, of course, available year-round. (I need to try some of those Asian chiles in stir fry...yum.)

Fennel's natural season is from fall through early spring. Like most cool weather crops, the plant bolts and turns bitter in warmer weather.

Figs have a short second season in late fall (the first harvest comes in summer) just in time for Thanksgiving.

Jerusalem artichokes/Sunchokes are brown nubs, that look a bit like small pieces of fresh ginger. Look for firm tubers with smooth, tan skins in fall and winter. (not sure I've seen these, except on the food channel)

Kale is like all hearty cooking greens – cooler weather keeps it sweet. (had it in soups but want to try other ways)

Kohlrabi (late fall) comes into season by the end of fall, but stays at its sweet best into winter.

Okra (early fall) needs heat to grow, so a nice long, hot summer in warmer climates brings out its best. Look for firm, plump pods in late summer and early fall. (I've never cooked with it)

Pears have a season that runs from mid-summer well into winter, depending on the variety and region. (I will try baking with these...didn't care for them fresh)

Persimmons are available for a short window in the fall and early winter - look for bright, heavy-feeling fruits. (sweet! I wonder if I will find them)

Quinces area most under-appreciated fruit. Bright and tart, quince jellies and desserts are a fall and early winter favorite. (available in Ok? I wonder...)

Rutabagas also known as "yellow turnips" and "Swedes" are a sweet, nutty root vegetables perfect in stews, roasted, or mashed with plenty of butter.

Tomatillos look like small green tomatoes with a light green papery husk. (definitely looking forward to this)

Turnips have a sharp but bright and sweet flavor. Look for turnips that feel heavy for their size. (turnip gratin by Pioneer Woman? I think so)

Winter squash of all sorts comes into season in early fall and usually last well into winter. (butternut squash risotto on the way)

If you can think of any fruits or veggies that I should try, let me know! The Asian and Mexican markets are something I've not explored yet and I might be pleasantly surprised.

So, that's the update. Been enjoying time with friends, but work has been crazy-busy. This week should be a bit...calmer...hopefully :/

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Ups and Downs

Wow, work is DRAINING. The building is hot (especially the band room), co-workers are demanding, and the work load at the beginning of the year is staggering. I haven't even looked at tests my journalism kids took yesterday. I don't know when I'll get to grade them.

I have this policy of not bringing work home. I'll do computer research, send emails/make phone calls, but I don't bring actual, physical work home. I find it never makes its way back to the school; plus, I like a little separation.

This morning, I was able to experience just what new low voices would do for my band. 2 tubas instead of one, plus the introduction of a tenor and bari sax have done wonders. When we finished the national anthem (last time through), my very picky, cynical, and pessimistic first chair clarinet player said, "Damn! That was GOOD!" I couldn't help but laugh. It was. It's like the underbelly we've been missing has finally filled in. It was breathtakingly deep. I love color saxes. I immediately decided to put together a full sax quartet. My problem is I only have one bari, which means he can't participate in more than one like ensemble, which sucks! So, unless he wants to share, I'm going to have to find something to do with my other altos because they will probably want to do something, too. What a horrible problem to have ;)

The website is working well, and we got all our new software in and installed, so my kids can start playing with all of that in yearbook and newspaper. They're doing really well this year. Anyone want to buy a $25 page sponsorship? Anyone? ANYONE?!?!?

I'm feeling better about my body. A couple of days back on the lower-carb wagon and I feel better. H made some comment last night and tonight about dinner being so low-carb. Well, that's what works for me. He wasn't complaining...just commenting. I hate commenting! He's lost like, 20something pounds, though. Riding his bike. Cutting back the booze. It's so easy for him. I want to lose 20something pounds! Or more!

Anywho, just throwing out an update. I've been feeling kind of low, tired, down. Don't really know why. I think the hot weather has fried my brain a bit. I really don't want to hear how other people are "busy" but I can't say anything lest I hurt their feelings. I have a way of being someone...acerbic. So, I just smile and keep my mouth shut. It's taking a toll.

Sunday, August 29, 2010


So, school's great. The kids are great. I feel like a crazy person trying to keep up with everything, but a couple of things will calm down starting this week so I know it's going to get better. Losing a plan really affected me for awhile.

The weight loss has not been stellar. I keep losing/gaining the same 2-3 pounds over, and over, AND OVER and it's driving me nuts. I'm not working out so much that I would ever believe that I've put on muscle. Clothes are fitting the same, measurements, same. I know I'm not drinking enough water (my hoarse voice can attest to that) but since the water fountain next to my room gave out, I just can't always find the time to refill like I would like! I also hate running to the bathroom every hour; when it was over 90 in the building and a million outside, I loathed going into that hot box to peel off my clothes, only to have to yank them on again. Since the heat broke a bit it's not been so bad. I have a hard time believing that is my only reason for not losing.

So, this week I'm going to be super-strict. One free meal. No OJ so no smoothies. Work out every day. No wheat. (I'm still allowing potatoes because they have amazing nutritional benefits and it keeps me from eating pasta, etc.) No fast food. Nothing, nadda, zilch. We'll see how it goes. I just don't know if I'm not eating enough or eating too much. Doing the carb-cycling thing was way to difficult to stay with, given my crazy work life. I was just trying to keep the carbs down in general.

I would have a little treat now and then, but not so much that it should be affecting me. I'm just frustrated and confused. I guess I'm even going to have to cut out smoothies with OJ and my daily allowance of chocolate. No more frozen yogurt. I've definitely cut waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay back on the alcohol. I think I'm just going to leave that for Friday happy hour. Otherwise, none at home. My tolerance is so low now, anyway, that I'm happy with just a couple of drinks.

So, this has just been a pity party. I've noticed an increase in strength, for sure. I need to get some 10lb weights so I can move up on some of my weight lifting moves (shoulder presses, bicep curls, triceps work, chest presses and flies, and a couple others) and soon I'm going to need to bump up past the 25lb that I have for rows.

I'm really considering going to a Zumba class, as well. They're only $5. Seems like fun. I sort of wish I had someone to go with me; but the other side of me doesn't want help and doesn't want anyone who knows me seeing me dance like that. Ha.

I've also been frustrated financially. I'm still trying to pay off flooring, summer tuition, and my work wardrobe replacement. I was prepared for one of the three: tuition. I'm glad I got the clothes; I feel more confident and I've gotten a lot of compliments. I know I look more professional, which is great. I know my new principal wanted that from everyone. But, these things don't come free. However, I did get lots of stuff on super-sale (Land's End Overstocks and private sales are becoming a new best friends) but, not free. My plan is just to empty my savings into my card, pay as much as I can, keep my car payment and insurance covered and maybe give myself a little cash for the month. I don't need much in the way of "stuff" right now, anyway, except for the weights. And not too long from now, new workout shoes. But, I'm pretty good everywhere else. Hopefully, I'll get to the point where I can save again.

It's not like I have that much saved, anyway. H said he would help me as soon as he's caught up with his expenses, which hopefully will be soon.

So, that's me griping. Free meal this coming week is going to be spaghetti with meatballs. H suggested "blackened tuna steaks" and that pisses me off. He knows I LOATHE fish and that's too healthy for a free meal! He can go out and get that stuff if he wants it, but I'm not cooking it. Have I mentioned his new affection for kippers and sardines? I freaking hate that shit. The smell alone is vomit-inducing for me. I can't even stand the smell of canned tuna. I can tolerate canned salmon, but not fresh. I don't even like to cook shrimp because of the smell. Okay, that was a totally random rant. I guess I'm just tired of those kinds of suggestions.

Off to meal plan for the week and eventually work out. And clean. And help with laundry...usual Sunday stuff. I'm so boring :P