October 30, 2009

Meeting my goals

Sorry I've been sporatic around your blogs lately - I promise I'll return in a commenting frenzie in a couple of weeks!!

Just when you thought you were done with Cades Cove pictures...

On July 4th, Jay loaded up the bikes and we went riding around the 11 mile scenic loop.  While we were biking around the loop, we passed a jogger.  At the time my longest run was 5 miles or so, and I was amazed that this woman could jog around the entire loop!

My parents met up with us afterward for a pic-nic then a (motor vehicle) ride through the park.  Talking with my mom, I told her I had two goals.  The first was to be able to ride my bike the whole way; there are several steep hills on the loop where most people have to get off their bike and walk them up.  Their downhill counterparts have warning signs from the National Park telling bikers they must walk their bikes down.

The second, and one I thought was more difficult at the time, was to be able to run the loop without stopping.

I did just that this weekend.

Jay's birthday was Saturday, so I planned my long run on Sunday.  I didn't want to spend 2 hours away from the birthday boy.  He wanted to go hiking in the National Park, then take a drive around Cades Cove.  His clients had different plans, so he ended up working most of his birthday.

"We'll just go to Cades Cove tomorrow after church." He offered.  The only problem was that I had a 2 hour run that couldn't be rescheduled again.  "Why don't you just run the loop while I drive it?"

My run was supposed to be 10 miles, but we figured that he could drive it, watching the odometer.  The road has plenty of pulloffs and he could just wait for me at my "finish line."

I was a little nervous because there was traffic to contend with, and of course those hills, but Jay assured me that if I could manage this run I could do anything.   A bold statement from one of my biggest critics.

The scenery was gorgeous, as expected.  Some of the cars were very friendly, and went out of their way to share the one lane road.  Others were obviously irritated, pushing me over into the gravel/ditch.

Cades Cove is typically where we see most of our bears in the summer, but its getting to be a little late in the season.  The only wildlife to be photographed were deer, turkey, and squirels.  The horses aren't wild, but belong to a stable that is located in the cove.

If you've been around my blog for a while, you know that the Cove is where Jay and I got married.  "Our" church is at about the half way point of the loop.  I was about an hour into my run and hoped that Jay was waiting for me at the church.

I had visions of him jogging up to me, giving me a kiss of encouragement, then continuing on the drive. 

Only I rounded the corner and there was no Jay.

I did make a comment to a man waiting for traffic to pass before he crossed the road "better not cross in front of me - I'm going so fast I might run over you."  He laughed and told me that I'd already passed them several times along the way.  When his family caught up to me later in the trail, he spoke to me as they drove by.

I chatted with several people along the way - from the older lady who offered me a ride, to the hayride driver who spoke to me over his loudspeaker.  His passengers had fun watching me pass them as they sat in traffic, and passing me as they were able to move on up the road.  "Here she comes again!" One of the girls in the back said to her father/grandfather.

Another new componet to this run, was energy gels.  I wanted to try a few different types of them before the half marathon, to see which I liked best.  About half way in, I opened my sharkies.  They are a gummy shark that tastes like candy.  Not thinking, I chewed them up and swallowed them like I normally would.

Only as I was eating I started to get out of breath.

Like every good Southern girl I have manners.  My mama taught me to chew with my mouth closed.  She never knew that I would need to breath through my mouth while chewing.  As I concentrated on keeping my lips open while I chewed, I hoped that I didn't look like the horses from earlier in the trail.

As the path continued on, I started to get discouraged.  This was my first run that I didn't have the mileage mapped out.  I have always either ran the 3 mile loop in my neighborhood, or did an out and back on the highway.  Not knowing how much running I had left was difficult.

Around the two hour mark, I started to get really frustrated.  Around every turn I kept looking for my car Quinn, my darling husband.  I made it to the stop sign at the end of the trail, touched the sign (as my husband has tried to make a habit for me), and turn around walking. 

Had he gotten bored and decided to drive the loop again?  Why hadn't he waited on me like he was supposed to?

After about 10 minutes of walking, he came driving around the corner.  Apparently he'd stopped at one of the pulloffs to take pictures and never caught up with me.

Turns out, the stop sign almost exactly 10 miles (to get the 11 miles in, you have to go on the two lane road back up to the entrance).  I was disappointed - if I had ran 11 miles my time wouldn't have been so bad, but for 10 miles it was a little depressing.

2 hours 14 minutes. 

Jay, who's normally telling me I need to work on my speed and get quicker, was impressed at my run time.  He pointed out that I had to dodge traffic, run up hills that I wasn't accustom to, as well as do some of my running in gravel/dirt (when the drivers wouldn't share the road). 

For good measure I included the exhaust I was breathing in the whole time (who knew that the National Park would be so smelly) as well as the cigarettes that I inhaled as the smokers held them out the window.

Beyond the feeling of accomplishment of completing my first double digit run, I took away something incredibly valuable for my half marathon.  If I could handle all the hills of Cades Cove, most of them being toward the end of the run - then nothing is going to keep me from conquering the "standard deluxe" hill at mile 8 of my half marathon!

October 29, 2009

Thursday's Ten - Halloween Costumes

I've never been all that creative when it comes to Halloween costumes.  My mom was the time that would throw something together and call us a gypsie.  Some of my costumes have been more creative than that, and some just fell flat...

10. Last year I went to a "famous singers" themed party. 

So I curled my hair, but put on too much makeup and went as J-Lo. The effort is lost since you can't see the velour track pants in the picture.  Or not.

9. Cowgirl is a common one that I do.  I've got the boots and the hat.  Its too easy.

8. Then there was that time I went as Laura from Little House on the Prairie. 

Oops...wrong holiday - that was Easter.

7.  I had a horrible cut/color experience last October that left me looking like Elivra...

6. Then there was that time my sister and I got into my mom's makeup case and used her pink lipstick to draw a star and the words "Jem" on our faces.

5.  I've been known to dress as a runner a time or two...

4. Or don a football jersey (with my dad)

3. One year, I borrowed my dad's pants, wore my throwback Lou Gehrig jersey, wrist bands, chain and padlock around my neck,  and went as WWE Superstar John Cena.

Everyone thought I was Eminem.

2. I had a brief stint as a UT Vol cheerleader (That's my dad again - back in the day he was a dead ringer for Earl Hickee)

But my #1 all time best costume ever, was the year I went as Cowboy David.  My aunt had recently married a guy named David.  He wasn't a cowboy, but a music minister for a Baptist church.  Not sure where I came up with that one.  As we were scanning in the pictures for the wedding - Jay commented on how cute I was in my minnie mouse dress "but who's that little boy."

PS - The one in the dress is my sister.

October 28, 2009

Weigh-in Wednesday - Happy Shrinkaversary!!!

Shrink-a-Versary Challenge with the Sisterhood!

Looks like we're gonna be celebrating the 1st anniversary of the Sisterhood in style! Today is the first day of the new challenge, so be sure to weigh-in and link up.

I'm excited about the new fitness challenge because its one that I can actually hold my own in - we're gonna be logging mileage ladies!! That challenge doesn't actually begin for another week and a half, but considering I'm logging 21 miles this week - and my mileage will only grow between now and the 21st I think I'll manage okay in this challenge.

While I'm gone on vacation (Nov. 5th - 13th), I'm scheduling blogs so that you guys won't miss me too much.  Those of you that only visit on Wednesdays, what would you like to see in place of my typical weigh in post? 

Now I'm gonna pick your brains - any one have any maintenance experience/wisdom? 

I'm currently eating about 1800 calories, 2,000 on the weekend.  I know that probably sounds like a lot, but with the activity level I'm at, I should be at 2350 for maintenance using the Harris Benedict formula.  I understand that its not a one-size fits all formula, but I expected to be closer to that.

What do you all think could be the problem? 

Do you think that my body is just too use to the exercises that I'm doing?

I went to the "Super Class" at the gym last night.  Twice a year they do a two hour class, giving a sampling of every class they offer.  After a warm up, we did step, step & strike, kick boxing, cardio on the bosu ball, ab work, leg & arm strength training, and finished up with 15 minutes of yoga.

I'll just tell you that class kick my rear. 

Combine that with my running buddy's knee injury (from an inbalance of muscles) makes me wonder if I should go harder on my cross training.  From all I've read its very common for runners to get injured because their quads aren't as strong as their hamstrings.

The gym also offers a spin class - so I'm thinking that I'll do at least one spin or aerobics class once a week.  Do you think that'll help?

What suggestions do you guys have?  I either wanna lose more weight (120 would be nice) or be able to eat more at maintenance.  It might not be possible, but I'm sure gonna try!!

October 27, 2009

Answered Prayer

Remember my messy car? And how I couldn’t decide on paying someone to clean it up or forcing myself to find the time in my schedule to take care of it?

Well then in that case go here.

Its okay, I’ll wait.

Now that you’re up to speed – God answered my question for me! Isn’t He awesome!

I guess Realized how badly it was bothering me and irritating me at my husband – the messy offender. He got sick of how filthy my car was.

Sunday morning heading to church, Jay and I had to drive separately (yet another blessing from above) because he was meeting clients immediately afterward.

So I’m driving down the road, chilling to the worship music on the radio, sipping my homemade iced coffee* (in a Starbucks cup from several months ago). Apparently I was holding it by the lid instead of the cup because as I was returning it to the cup holder, the lid gave way God smacked the coffee cup right out of my hand.

My first thought - “Is this God telling me that my car is so bad that cleaning it on Sunday would be like getting my ox out of a ditch?”

Pursuing that thought, I tried to come up with a time Sunday afternoon that I could clean it. After church, I was going out to lunch with my family. Then meeting back up with Jay to go to Cades Cove and do my 10 mile run (more on that tomorrow – complete w/pictures).

I ended up not getting home till 7:30, then there was the post run desalting (aka a shower), then lunch packing, etc. Apparently the ox would have to stay in a ditch another day.

Monday night, I had girl’s night with friends, so that was out of the question. It was only a matter of time until the heavy whipping cream started to sour in my car.

So I had my answer – God wanted me to pay someone to clean my car.

Or else I finally had a good excuse to pay someone. Jay offered to clean it, but when I pointed out that we didn’t have any shampoo for the seat or floor mats, he quickly gave in.

And it looks gorgeous. $30 well spent.

Maybe dude is struggling financially and my $30 is going to help him out. Maybe I needed to appreciate my husband’s hard work more, and realizing that $30 was a luxury we could afford was a good lesson to me. Or maybe it was all coincidence.

I’ll thank God tonight just in case – it surely couldn’t hurt anything.

*Iced Coffee Recipe

1 cup chilled coffee

1 tbsp heavy whipping cream (am going to try half and half to save calories – I’ll let you know)

1 tsp coffee syrup (I use zero calorie, splenda sweetened)


October 26, 2009

Wedding Planning - God Provides

I'll admit that I'm just using this as a bit of a filler so that I can wait until our anniversary to post the wedding stuff...when you're done with my story, head over to Rachel's for more Meetings, Marriages, and Memories!

While the common trend in weddings is to hire a wedding planner to organize the event, my tight budget wouldn't allow me to pay someone to do tasks that I am more than capable of doing myself. Jay and I new that we wanted to get married in Cades Cove, a section of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, most of the other details still had to be worked out.

We settled on a reception location - it was love at first site. When we first saw the Lodge at Hidden Mountain we fell in love. It had a rustic charm that matched well with the Missonary Baptist Church yet it still offered a classic elegance that every girl dreams about for her wedding. We had to change the Wedding date, because the room was already booked, but we decided that it was well worth it. Not only was the location perfect but the price was well under that of ordinary hotel conference rooms! With this location we don't even need table linens. The pounded copper would be a crime to cover up! Center pieces will be our only decorative cost for this facility.

As we were booking the room, the Lodge event staff gave us an informational packet to help us along in the planning. Included was a list of catering choices. We weren't limited to that list, but it gave us a head start on who had been used in the past. From this list I found my Chef. She was able to give me what I wanted for a very reasonable price. In addition to that, she was very likeable. I realize a good personality doesn't have any effect on food - but it does make the planning process a whole lot easier and more stress free!!

In addition, she gave me another wonderful tip to make my wedding even more beautiful. She is currently planning her daughter's wedding, so she is full of helpful ideas. She suggested, since the cups at the hall are plastic, she suggested that instead I use mason jars. Brilliant idea, since it works perfectly with our theme. Its just another way to dress up the table without spending a lot of money.

The problem? I don't have 200 mason jars. I called my grandmother, but she has started canning less and less as she gets older. So I resigned myself to the less decorative plastic cups. I just couldn't justify spending $100+ on jars that wouldn't be used again.

Then God dropped the solution in my lap. At my church, there is a couple that my family has fallen in love with and they have adopted us as their own. My mom called one evening while I was at Jay's house and told me that I needed to call my "adopted" grandmother. She had mason jars she was taking to the Goodwill and she just wanted to check to see if anyone in my family wanted them for canning.

I immediately called her and let her know that I needed them. "You don't can…" "No, but I have a perfect use for them." I went on to explain how I was wanting them, but I couldn't get my hands on any. No doubt this was a blessing from God.

The bridesmaids dresses process couldn't have went more smoothly. I was stressed at how we were going to go shopping when my sister, who just had a baby 2 months ago, insists that she's not trying anything on. And anything that fits her now better not fit her by the time the wedding gets here. (She's really not a diva, just hormonal). My cousin (and only other bridesmaid) suggested that we all meet up and shop for dresses off the rack. I had decided that I would be okay if my bridesmaids didn't have the same dress.

While I don't believe that God cares about trivial things (my mother and I have argued about whether or not God cares about the kind of curtains she has in the bedroom - long story), I do believe that God loves His children. Like any good father, He wants to calm our fears and anxietys. To my family who's "spiritual gift" is worry, He constantly has to remind us that He's got it all under control.

Lesson learned this time via TJ Maxx. God answered a prayer though a discount clothing store. Sounds ridiclous huh? But as I walked toward the dressing room I saw a tea length purple halter dress. Not exactly the shade I wanted, but definitely the perfect style to fit the body type of my bridesmaids. My biggest concern for my sister was finding something that would allow for her breastfeeding body. This empire waisted dress was perfect. I called both the ladies and asked what size they would need. Each requested a size up. For the price ($25) they could easily have it altered down to fit them if need be.

I'm quite convinced that this qualifies me for best Bride of the year. Sure, they will probably never wear this dress again. Let's face it, for $25 who really cares. And we all really know that they would have never worn a $150 dress again either.

I can only say that God has now used this blog to remind me of His goodness. Funny, when I started writing...um...rambling I thought I was going to focus on the potential groomsman crisis (none of Jay's cousins were available for the job). But the Lord instead reminded me that its not about the dress, or the tux, or even who is standing up with you. This is the day I will confess my love for the man of my dreams before God and my family, and will make a convenant to always honor that love. As long as God's invited, I've got nothing to worry about.

"Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God." Phillipians 4:6

October 23, 2009

Vacation Planning

I'm starting to really get excited about our vacation/anniversary trip. Its only 12 days away!!! I booked the flight and lodging yesterday and have already started on my excel spreadsheet itinerary. We're staying 3 days in the Sequoia National Park, one night in San Francisco, and 3 nights at a B&B in Napa.

*Puts on nerd hat*

I do, however, need your help.  I'd like to get a few blogs scheduled for while I'm gone but don't want to completely abandon you guys.

I need your help though - is there anything you'd like to ask me?  Serious, goofy, it doesn't matter.  Post your questions in the comment section and I'll do a post (or two) about your questions.  Or maybe you'll inspire me to do an entire blog post about just your question!

Since we'll be gone on our anniversary - I'll definitely do a MM&M post full of wedding pictures and excitement.  What do you think about a repost of the wedding blog?  I know a lot of you are new readers (well maybe not new, just not around a year ago.) 

Let me know what you think!

Also, if you've been to any super-cool-cant-be-missed Cali hot spots let me know about them!

October 22, 2009

Enjoying the hike

I was over at Jeannie's blog this morning and found a quote that caught my eye.

"Its not the mountain we conquer but ourselves." Sir Edmund Hillary

Then there was Christie O.'s blog over at the Sisterhood about the self discovery that happens when you decide that you're going to change your body by changing your life.

It really got me thinking (as you can tell by my extra long comment). 

I started this journey out of vanity.  I was a size 8 pant and weighed 138.

I dabbled in exercise on and off for a couple of years, but it never really took.  I wasn't losing weight so why keep up the effort?

"You're healthy the way you are.  You'll never be a size 4, but your blood work looks good."

The childish part of me wants to schedule an appointment just so I can show her the tag of this size 4 skirt I'm wearing today.  I know she meant well, but she had no clue it was sheer genetics that made my numbers so good.  I was eating fast food almost every day!

Then there are the family members who, like my doctor, mean well.  They just don't understand my passion for running.  "It won't hurt you to take this weekend off."  They'd be right - if I didn't have a race scheduled that counted on every weekend being a mileage increase.

Also, not to be forgotten, are those pesky outside interferences.  This past weekend, Jay's parents came into town and stayed with us in order to do some business down here.  It happened to also be the weekend  my brother-in-law (my sister's husband) turned 40.  Finding time for my 9 mile run wasn't going to be easy.

As badly as I hated to, I set my alarm to get up early Saturday morning to get my run in before we left for my sister's town (about 2 hours away).  About 2 miles into the run, a dog that I'd never seen in the neighborhood before ran up to me.  Normally the neighborhood dogs will leave you alone once you run past their house, but this one just kept running right beside me.

Something that you might not know about me is that I'm terrified of dogs and I don't know much about them.  This one looked like a boxer (my sister and BIL use to have one), so I just kept telling myself that Bubba was a boxer and he was a friendly dog - maybe this one was too.

When it started nipping at my leg I really started freaking out.  I pulled out my pepper spray, but was unsure whether or not I should use it.  Would it just piss the dog off and make it bite, instead of nip?  Thankfully a neighbor was outside and called the dog off of me.

I decided to continue my run, excluding that street. (I have several different streets in my subdivision) Surely I could get the rest of my run in by avoiding the back section.  Only by the time I got back to the loop in front of my house - the dog was now on my street.

And followed me onto my porch. 

Jay had left for work and his parents were still inside asleep.  I called my mom.  "Mamathereisaboxerdogonmyporchanditwontletmeintomyhouseandjaysgoneandidontknowwhattodo."  I cried into the phone.  (Like literally cried.)

Finally I was able to calm myself down enough to dig the key out of my fanny pack and a "get outta here" got him away from my door and I let myself in.  The way he was following me, I figured he didn't belong in my subdivision. 

You dog lovers out there my hate me, but I did call animal control.  When the officer arrived he had two surprising pieces of information - the dog was from a neighborhood several streets down (5 minutes by car) and it wasn't a boxer.

It was a pit bull.

Okay so that story was a little longer than what it was meant to be - but the point?  I didn't give up. 

I still managed to get my 9 miles in, I just had to shift my run to Sunday afternoon.  Sure I was exhausted from the party and from all the traveling (not to mention playing with the two cutest kids on the planet) but I wasn't going to let an irresponsible pet owner keep me from reaching my mountain.

Sure , I could have probably skipped the 9 mile week and went straight from 8 to 10 miles, but I would have missed out. 

My journey to a half marathon isn't just about crossing the finish line.  Its digging deep each week.  Learning I'm capable of more and more.  Its about facing my fears and coming out victorious (or just leaving with the knowledge that pepper spray really would have worked on the dog). 

Its about my brother-in-law, who first thought I was aiming too high when I told him about wanting to do a half. "You should probably get several more 5Ks and some 10Ks under your belt first."  It felt amazing when he called me after my 8K to brag on my time and just how far I'd come on my journey.

(This is the same brother-in-law who raced the Empire State Building earlier this year and plans on competing at the Sears tower next month.)

And like Christie O. said, its about learning that I'm brave.

(Not including dog incidents.)

Its about learning I really am capable of doing what I set out to do.

Its about valuing myself enough to wanna invest in me.

Its only a little about the amazing body I've acquired in the process ;)

In all seriousness - give me those 13 pounds back and it still doesn't take away my success. 

My success isn't the result.  The hard work is actually the success, not merely a tool needed to reach it. 

Because after all, what good is getting to the top of the mountain, if you don't enjoy the hike up?

October 21, 2009

Parade of Cans

Shrink for Good with the Sisterhood!

I ended the challenge this weekend at my maintenance weight - then pigged out.  First at my BIL's 40th birthday party, then traveling home the next day.  I weighed Monday to see the damage, but it didn't show up until today.

I'm up 2 pounds from this weekend.  While I'm sure its not 2 pounds of fat, its a good motivator for me.  I need to focus on eating well, especially as my race gets closer.  Never mind the IHOP I'm eating for breakfast now, its leftovers and we all know I'm too cheap to let good food go to waste. 

I'm taking this moment (the pancakes are now in my belly) to say that I will be more dedicated hence forward.  I have to be.   I need the nutrition for my runs and I worked too hard to let my progress slip away.

Now for the moment you've been waiting for...

Since I only started out with 2 pounds until maintenance, I decided to do a pound of food for every mile I increased my long run.  Since that would look a little puny, I added a pound for every mile in my long run.  So you have two pounds of weight loss and nine pounds of long run.

Those are all foods I already had around the house.  I had a ton of white pasta stockpiled, so when I started my healthy living I couldn't bear to throw it all out.  I figured this challenge was the perfect way to get rid of it!

How did you do this challenge?  Head over to the Sisterhood and link up so I can check out your cans!!

October 20, 2009

Better Late than...

According to Never Say Diet (a blog I check out on a daily basis), yesterday started National Fat Talk Free week.

Even though we'll be getting a late start, I want to encourage you to give it a try.  Remember my "no negative self talk" challenge? I'll tell ya, it was hard. 

Hard, but worth it.

For the sake of your daughters.

For the sake of your marriage.  (It has to be frustrating to men to have to build us up all the time only to watch us tear ourselves down.)

For the sake of your own well being.

If you can't love yourself, at least stop the hatin.

October 19, 2009

New York City: Day 4, the reinactment

I hope yall are having as much fun as I am reliving the past over at Rachel's Meetings, Marriages, and Memories Carnival. 

Day 4 – our last day in New York City.

Somehow (my neurotic careful planning) we had managed to squeeze all the major landmarks/points of interest into three days. Friday would just be a day to walk around the city one last time before we headed to see Jay’s parents in Ohio.

Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting

Jay wanted to see Wall Street, so we took a moment for a photo. While there was no formal line to get a picture in front of the bull, plenty of people were trying to do it.

Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting

Since that kind police officer foiled our plans to visit Century 21 on Wednesday, we decided to head that direction. I quickly learned that discount shopping in NYC isn’t the same as discount shopping at our outlet malls or at the consignment stores in K-town. A whole city block full of discount shoes and clothing and I purchased one item – a work out top. Everything else either didn’t fit properly or was too expensive (hello European designer shoes!)

Jay stopped for lunch next door and got a couple of slices of pizza. Since the small restaurant was standing room only, we found a flower planter on the sidewalk outside and took a seat while he ate. Although I had been depressed about my unsuccessful shopping attempt, I was quickly given a dose of perspective as we crossed the street and saw where the World Trade Center buildings use to stand. It had changed a lot since my visit four years ago.

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While I felt sad just remembering that tragic event, it also saddened me to see how life was still going on. Building projects on the site and the pedestrians as they hustled by without a glance seemed to say that this was just another block on the streets of New York. I suppose that I am looking at it all wrong and it’s actually a testament to the strength and the resilience of the people of New York.

Our only other stop for the day was Central Park.

Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting

Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting

Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting

We had forgotten to get pictures of the spot where Jay proposed, and we decided to head back since we had a little spare time. My dramatic side got the best of me and I decided a little reenactment was in order. After savoring the moment (again), we headed back on the subway and to the ferry. Our trip to NYC was over. Our journey through New Jersey had just begun. Somewhere in all my planning, I didn’t consider that we would be heading out of town right at 5 o’clock. We didn’t reach Ohio until well into the night. Good thing I sleep easily in the car!

Next MM&M stop for me?  The wedding planning!  (Can you tell I'm trying to drag this out to post about the wedding on our anniversary?)

October 16, 2009

Frugal Friday: Choose your friends

I haven't participated in Frugal Friday for a while because I came to a point in my life where I was frugal tipped out. I'd heard it all. I'd done it all. I could tell you which tips were full of crap (making your own fabric softener out of vinegar and hair conditioner? Remind me how that's cheaper than a $3 bottle of fabric softener that actually makes your clothes soft?) I could also tell you which tips worked like a dream.

It got to be old hat so I dropped out of the Frugal scene for a while.

Guess who's back with a piece of UNconventional wisdom about how to save money.

It all started with a hot day and a phone in a sports bra.

Picture it - East Tennessee. Early October. A young peasant girl A young runner decides to go for an 8 mile run.  Having no pockets she puts her cell phone in her sports bra.  An hour and a half later when she pulls it out for the obligatory  "dad I didn't get kidnapped call" the display is dead.

After taking it into the cell phone store she discovers that boobie sweat is considered water damage and the company won't replace it.

Sad story isn't it?  So how did I get out of paying full price for a new phone (those prices you see in the store are discounted with contract renewal - I had just renewed my contract a month prior)?

I know people who like to have the latest gadgets.  And aren't afraid to pay for them.  When I was explaining my woes, and how boobie sweat is lethal to phones (who knew?), one friend suggested I get an old phone, or a prepaid phone and just stick my SIM card in the back to activate. 

The problem was that my old phone was 3 years old (I swear they are built to break after 2 years so you have to renew your contract) and wouldn't hold a charge for 24 hours.  Another friend said that she thought she had a phone at home she could give me. 

The only catch - it was a Razr from 2007.  I explained that the one I killed was a 2008 bottom of the line phone, so a 2007 top of the line model would actually be an upgrade for me. 

If they phone worked, why wasn't she using it?  Because she had upgrade to a blackberry to get more features.

I saved $50-$100 by knowing someone who wasn't afraid to spend money.

The catch?  To get these perks you have to be unashamedly frugal.  If they don't know you're cheap, how will they know if you would be offended by their offer?

Also, some friends will mock you.  Particularly the ones with a big screen tv.   It doesn't bother me.  I'd rather have my 5.5 acres paid for than a big tv any way.

October 15, 2009

As if you didn't know enough about my love...

Lucy told us all about her love yesterday. Since I'm still a love-struck honeymooner, I figured I'd share about Jay and I

♥ What are your middle names?
Elizabeth and Ord (don't ask)

♥How long have you been together?
our 3rd dativersary was Tuesday (the first day we met)

♥ How long did you know each other before you started dating?
we'd emailed for 4 months, we'd never met

♥ Who asked who out?
He asked me (finally!)

♥ Who made the first move?
me - it was our third date and he went for another hug. i went straight for his lips!

♥ How old are each of you?
29, but he's turning the big 3-0 this month.

♥ Did you go to the same school?
not even the same state

♥ Are you from the same home town?
see above

♥ Who is the smartest?
We're both pretty smart - he's more motivated so he flexes his intelligence muscles more.

♥ Who majored in what?
I was an English major (totally useless) and he majored in finance.

♥ Who is the most sensitive?
It depends on what day you hit us. I get my feelings hurt easily. The Notebook is one of his favorite movies. You make the call.

♥ Where do you eat out most as a couple?
Clint's, because that's our typical after church with the family lunch

♥ Where is the furthest you two have traveled together as a couple?
New York City

♥ Who has the worst temper?
I show my temper more often (and have thrown a thing or two). He rarely gets angry but when he does its pretty bad.

♥ How many children do you want?
none. i think he wants a couple. maybe turning 30 will bring me a biological clock for my birthday.

♥ Who does the cooking?
me. he can - he cooked a great dinner for our 6th monthiversary (dating) but rarely steps into the kitchen.

♥ Who is more social?
He could be a hermit, but enjoys himself when I drag him out. I crave social interaction.

♥ Who is the neat-freak?
Have you ever seen Monk? Represent!
He could live like a frat boy all the time and not care.

♥ Who is the most stubborn?
I like to pretend I am, but I give in more than I'd care to admit.

♥ Who wakes up earlier?
Me, without a doubt. Most mornings I work out before going to work at 8AM. He's self employed.

♥ Where was your first date?
Johnny Carino's then the bowling alley.

♥ Who has the bigger family?
Me without a doubt. He's an only child with 7 first cousins. I have a sister, bil, niece, nephew, and 30 first cousins.

♥ Do you get flowers often?
He use to get them for me every month. Not so much since we've been married.

♥ How do you spend the holidays?
We trade out, this year will be Thanksgiving with my family, Christmas with his. :( It'll be my first Christmas not at home.

♥ Who is more jealous?
We both are - I don't care to be up front about it, he tries to hide it.

♥ How long did it take to get serious?
less than a month

♥ Who eats more?
He does.

♥ What do you do for a living?
I'm an "office assistant" and he's a real estate agent.

♥ Who does the laundry?
I do mine, he does his.

♥ Who’s better with the computer?
He knows about internet code and metatags for better searches and stuff. although i do work for the IT department

♥ Who drives when you are together?
Mostly he does.

♥ What is "your" song?
"It just comes natural" by George Strait

October 14, 2009

Weigh-in Wednesday - Um...okay

Shrink for Good with the Sisterhood!

My weight and my eating habits have been all over the place this week. I've been doing a church drama immediately after work since Wednesday. They've been providing dinner and snacks so I'm at their mercy.

I've been leaving myself 800-900 calories to cover myself - but then for dinner one night they served chili dogs and nachos then animal crackers and brownies for snack. Having said that...

Last week's weight:126.2
Monday's weight (post run): 123.8
This week's weight: 126.6

Looking at the Harris Benedict formula I should be able to eat around 1850 calories a day and still lose one pound a week. Right now I'm shooting for that number and just maintaining.

That means one of two things:

1) my metabolism is way off what this formula thinks it should be
2) i'm not working hard enough during my exercise sessions
3) i'm not doing a good enough job tracking during maintenance.

My guessing #3. So from here on out I'm going to resolve to be more dedicated. 1850 and not a calorie more. Okay so maybe fueling for my long run I'll spot myself a couple hundred extra, but I'm up to a 9 mile long run so I think that's reasonable.

Now its time to head on over to the Sisterhood and see how everyone else did this week.

October 13, 2009

Race Results and Training Update

This weekend I ran my first 8K - actually my first non 5K race. I had originally set a 55 minute goal for myself, hoping to finish with an 11 minute mile pace. Once I got to looking at my first 5K time, I realized I finished it with 10:30 pace. I'd only been running for a couple of months - those entire two months spend doing the couch to 5K program.

Sure, this was a longer race, but I've also come a long way in my training from there. I decided to set my "I'll be happy with" goal at 55 minutes, but also chose to set a more ambitious goal for myself. My "I'd poop my pants" goal was 52 minutes.

I felt slow and sluggish starting off the race. I wasn't a mid-packer as I usually aim for, but was one of the slower people competing. I couldn't see anyone in front of me (keep in mind that in Tennessee, even a flat course really isn't flat) and felt like there were only a couple people behind me.

I started getting down on myself - made worse by the traffic cop who made ME stop at a red light to let traffic out. I was humiliated - was I really running slow enough that the cop assumed that my running time didn't matter? I'd say I had to jog in pace for a least 15 seconds waiting on this guy to finally let me through.

Just a little piece down the road was the 1 mile mark. I feared being told I was at a 12 minute mile, so I was pleasnetly surprised to be told my first mile had been 10:30.

Another annoyance on the first part of the race (it was an out and back) was the run/walker that was using me as her pace marker. Every few minutes I'd hear her clomping behind me running up a piece ahead of me, only to stop and walk once she passed me.

Was I really the "dear god don't let this girl beat me" girl???

After about two miles, she couldn't keep up with me any more, and after the 2.5 mile turn around point, I didn't see her again. I did, however, chat a bit with some other runners who were very friendly and encouraging. We chatted for about a half mile before they picked up their pace for the finish.

The "back" portion for the most part was uneventful until I made my way back my nemisis - the traffic cop. As I headed toward him, I noticed him stopping the traffic that was traveling parallel to me and motioning on the traffic perpendicular to me. I threw my hands up in a "WTF" fashion...okay so maybe I really did say WTF, but not loud enough for him to hear.

Thankfully this time I only had to slow down, not stop completely for the tourons (tourist + moron) to get on their merry way.

In contrast, as I headed off the main road and onto the driveway of the school for the last 0.5 mile of the race, the most encouraging cop in the world was station on the corner. "You're doing great - keep it up!"

Thinking that the finish line was closer, I kicked it into high gear. Then I rounded another corner only to see that it was farther than I realized. I had promised myself I'd leave it all out there, so I kept pushing. "Just to the police car" I told myself.

But once I got to the police car I realized I still had about 100 feet to go. My running buddy met me at the car (she's quicker than me) and started encouraging me from the sidelines. "You've already met your goal - You can breath when you cross the finish line!"

I finished in 53:20 - half way between my satisfied goal and my thrilled goal. And if not for that stupid cop probably even closer to my thrilled goal.

All in all, I was a back-packer. 52 out of 72 and 10 of 12 in my age group. But I posted a good (for me) time.

In other news, I felt like Christie this morning. Okay maybe not really. Jay had to be up early this morning so I decided to get an unscheduled workout in. I decided to swim, something I rarely do because I suck at it.

So what made me think of our resident Tri Goddess? Not only was I swimming - I had a mantra that I kept repeating.

The lifeguard on duty is also a swim instructor and she was giving me quick tips on how to breathe. Yeah its that bad.

So as I swam (I managed to do 10 laps in 30 minutes - including the breaks in between for pointers and to catch my breath)I said my mantra.

Slow Down.

You don't suck.

You will get better.

The result? She could see (and I could feel) a difference from the beginning of my swim and my last couple of laps.

So now instead of dreading swims on my training plan (and erasing them to replace them with something else) I'm adding in an exercise this week - swimming Thursday morning. Is it stalking if someone tells you their work schedule and you make your plans around it?

October 12, 2009

MMM: NYC Day 3, Engagement Day 2

After starting the morning once again with a lovely breakfast – I hope Jay doesn’t get too use to it – we headed to the Statue of Liberty. Only to find that there was a two hour wait once we purchased our tickets. The lady in the ticket line beside us was getting cranky because she thought someone jumped her in line. I turned around to see what the commotion was about and there stood HURLEY!!

Okay so not really. But he really did look like him! I wanted to snap a picture but since there was nothing around that I could have pretended to be taking a picture of, you’ll just have to take my word for it.

After about 30 minutes in line, we decided that we would get lunch from a street vendor. $2 for a salted pretzel and $2 for a bottled Sunkist. Only when Jay gave the guy a $10 he only gave $4 change. Jay questioned his math and he said that the salt was an extra $2, so Jay pointed to where it said “salted” for $2 on the sign.

Not to be out done the vendor said that the drink was $4, once again Jay pointed to the bottled drink sign that said $2. The vendor insisted that the $2 only covered Pepsi’s and that the Sunkist was more – Jay immediately traded the Sunkist for the Pepsi and took his additional $2.

At first I didn’t get why the guy was doing that, and Jay had to explain it to me. When I commented that I was too naïve for the city, the lady behind us mentioned that she’d had the same problem with the vendor and asked where we were from. She and her husband were from Australia, visiting their niece who lived in NYC. They were very friendly and we spent the remainder of the 1 ½ wait chatting with them.

We finally made it to the place where they take your tickets, and were directed inside to a big security building. It looked similar to airport security – they had containers to empty your pockets and put your purses and jackets in which were sent through a metal detector while each visitor had to walk through one as well.

As we were standing there – already stripped of our belongings, but not yet through the metal detector, the guy in front of me in line leaned back onto my things, knocking them onto the ground. I freaked out a little because my camera was in the container, but thankfully nothing was hurt.

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First stop off the ferry was Liberty Island. We hadn’t been able to get tickets to tour the statue, so we walked around her, and snapped a few pictures, and then it was back to the ferry.

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Ellis Island was the next stop. Although I had been there before, during my trip 4 years ago, I remained disappointed that the building was not still set up like it was back in 1890. I would have preferred it to remain historically accurate; instead it was turned into a museum – gift/snack shop and all.

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We passed on the Ellis Island t-shirts, mugs, and pens, but did get one cheesy memento of the place – a flattened penny with a picture of the building on it. The first spring Jay and I were together we were at Nascar Speedpark and one of us commented on how cheesy the “I love you” penny making machine was. Jay took it as a personal challenge and made me one. When we saw the machine at Ellis Island, he decided that my change purse needed another.

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On the ferry ride back to Manhattan, Jay and I met a guy about our age from Ireland. Jay had trouble understanding him, so I had to translate. He was in town visiting a friend and planning on catching the Yankees Red Sox game that evening. I told him that my brother-in-law was from Carrickfergus and he told me the name of his hometown. It sounded like Coors or Cars or something like that, but I wasn’t able to understand more than he was from the Republic.

After disembarking the ferry, it was time for us to head to the Bronx – our baseball game didn’t start till 7, but we weren’t sure how long it would take us. And we definitely wanted to get their early. Jay was dying for dip (he had ran out earlier in the day) and we weren’t sure where to find it. After the previous day’s fiasco asking for directions from the cop, we were uneasy about asking someone, but really didn’t have a choice.

We stopped at a news stand, and Jay asked where the closest place to get cigarettes was. We could tell that the guy working the stand wasn’t a native English speaker, so Jay thought better of wasting time trying to explain what “dip” was, instead asking for ciggarettes. He was very nice and sent us across the street to a deli.

They did indeed sell cigarettes, but not smokeless tobacco. He suggested that we go to the tobacco store just up the street, but told us to hurry because they might close at 5. I must love Jay a lot (or else still be grateful for the rock on my hand) because I took off running right behind him.

Thankfully, this store did have something suitable. Not quite natural cut Grizzly, but mint Skoal was going to work well enough that he wouldn’t be antsy during the ball game. As the guy behind the counter rang it up, I asked Jay if he wanted to get two to ensure that he didn’t get into this predicament again, then the salesman said “$7.10 please”. Jay and I both agreed that one can would do him. (At home it costs $2.12)

Then it was off to the subway – we caught the subway near the Staten Island ferry port and headed toward the Bronx. Or so I thought. The more I looked at the map I realized that we weren’t on the right train. So we hopped off, walked a couple of blocks, and got to the right one.

Or so I thought.

It was the right train line, only we were on the wrong side – we needed to be going the other direction. A lady that worked their noticed our frustration and told us how we could get to the correct side without exiting the turnstiles and having to pay another fair.

Once we were heading in the right direction, I commented to Jay that I could understand why New York City cops had a bad name. The native New Yorker gave us wrong directions on purpose, getting us even more lost and frustrated with the city. In contrast, the three ethnic people that we got assistance from that day went above and beyond to help us out with something they really didn’t care about.

The express train was taking us in the right direction, but once in the Bronx we had one final change over so that we could get off at Yankee Stadium. We knew for sure it was the right train when we saw how crowded it was. We were barely able to squeeze on. I wasn’t comfortable wearing my newly acquired bling on a crowded subway, so I turned it around backwards so that the diamond was pressed into the palm of my hand.

As we stepped off the Subway the new stadium under construction was on our right, and the real Yankee Stadium was on our left. Just seeing it – knowing that this was the last year the house that Ruth built would be standing brought a tear to my eye. Somehow I doubt that the house that ‘Roids built will be able to live up the original’s legacy.

We found a ticket gate and got in line. I had purchased them on Stub Hub and was told that was a reputable online site, but when we got to the turnstile and the usher scanned our tickets – it beeped red and my heart skipped a beat. Turns out the bleachers have a separate entrance than the rest of the stadium and we were instructed to go around and enter on the other side.

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We also found out that Monument Park is only accessible with regular game tickets, not bleacher tickets. I was disappointed that I wouldn’t get to see Gehrig’s plaque, but I think Jay was more bummed than me. He even offered to hop the fence and get a picture of it for me. I assured him that was okay – I would prefer not to have a picture if it meant having to spend time in the Bronx police station.

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We take our seats and settle in for THE game of a lifetime.

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It was hard to believe that I was actually going to see a Yankees/Red Sox game in Yankee stadium. Fortunately I had convinced Jay to leave his camo Boston hat in the room. The bleacher creatures taunted anyone wearing Sox paraphernalia. When Manny Ramirez hit a home run into the outfield – the fans threw the ball back. The Red Sox dominated New York until the last inning when the Yankees finally got their second wind. Unfortunately it wasn’t enough and the Sox still won.

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Afterward, we walked around to the other side of the building and found the sidewalks barricaded. We had stumbled upon the player’s exit.

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The only player that came anywhere close to us was Johnny Damon. The rest of the guys just got straight on the bus. He came over and signed autographs.

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I finally convinced Jay that we had seen everyone we were going to see, and we headed back toward the subway. By the time we got on the ferry I was so tired I couldn’t keep my eyes open and I fell asleep. I woke up just as we were docking and we scurried out to the bus stop – perfect timing to catch the bus back to the bed and breakfast.

October 09, 2009

I run for...

Jay’s comment to me about the half marathon “It’s not like you’re running for me…” got me wondering – why do I run?

It started out as a whim. A friend of mine and I had started counting calories earlier in the year, we took spin classes and weight classes together. Then out of the blue she called and said “I think we should train for a 5K, I’ve just found this program online.”

It was, of course, the Couch to 5K program. We decided to skip the first two weeks, since we didn’t exactly fit the “couch” description. We were active; we just didn’t have any stamina to run. We signed up for our first race, but part of the way through the training she was sidelined and couldn’t compete with me.

I remembered being nervous and excited – my only goal was to run the entire 5K, no walking in between. I had run 3 miles in training, but always on a track. The course was hilly, but I managed to meet my goal.

After my first race – I was hooked. It was probably the rush of setting a goal then pushing myself to meet it. I finished 11th out of 16 in my age group, but I’d never felt more like a winner in my life.

Why do I run?

I run for me.
I run for weight loss/maintenance.
I run for health.
I run for the high.
I run for the sense of accomplishment.
I run for my niece and nephew.

My niece, who’s 5, has already said she wants to run races like her Aunt Boo.

My nephew, who’s 16 months, was unofficially diagnosed with asthma this week. Instead of getting upset about it, my sister told my mom “If Brooke can have it, and go on to run a half marathon, its not gonna hold him back.”

That makes me incredibly proud. So I guess it all comes back to…

I run for me.

What about you?

October 08, 2009

Hallmark's 10

Lora has a great list that Hallmark should take note for her Thursday's Ten blog.

I'm not quite that creative, but I'll give it a go. Cards that Hallmark has overlooked:

1) Happy Birthday to my Mother-in-Law - you're not my mother so I'm not going to put a lot of effort into this card. If you're son is too lazy to care what kind of card you get, why should I?

2) Happy birthday you, a guy I've only been out on a few dates with. Or was it just friendly gatherings? Yeah, whatever, happy birthday dude.

3) (Serious one) Happy grandparents day - grandpa! (I looked and looked for Jay's Papa a card and found ones that said "to my grandmother" and "to my grandparents". Guess they don't expect old grandpa to outlive grandma.

4) Happy bosses day! (Even though you forgot administrative professionals day.)

5) Happy Anniversary to my wonderful parents - I'm constantly amazed that you never divorced.

6) You're Having twins! (I'll be sure to add you to my permanent prayer list.)

7) Happy birthday to the boss's wife. I promise, he didn't ask us to take you to lunch. Even if we barely know you we thought of it ourselves.

8) Congratulations on your engagement. I have no doubt you'll make it - even if everyone else is just giving you 6 months.

9) Happy Fall Festival! We won't call it Halloween because that's a pagan holiday - throwing a seasonal name on it will make celebrating on the 31st not sinful!

10) I'm sorry I don't want to be your facebook friend. No matter how many times you ask. So please leave me alone. And no, this card isn't an attempt on my part to connect with you.

There you have it! I hope I was able to make you chuckle a little. If not, give it a whirl yourself then head to Lora's and link up!!

October 07, 2009

Holding Steady

Shrink for Good with the Sisterhood!

I'm doing okay holding steady around my goal weight - this week I'm at 126.2. That's a non-run weight (I'm running today at lunch) so I expected it to be a little higher.

For me now, its all about non-scale victories...and set backs. I've had each this week.

First off let me say, even though I'm in a crappy mood, I'm feeling skinny today. Amazing what a pair of pants that actually fit you can do!

Late last week I went shopping for birthdays and Christmas, and tried on a few pairs of pants along the way. While it varies from brand to brand - I bought my first pair of 4s this week! I'm officially a J. Crew 4 and a Gap 4. We'll not talk about the other stores.

My set back this week (as most of them usually are) was/is mental. Jay and I were going over our calendar for the next couple of months. He's got clients coming into town and wanted to know which weeks were off limits - ones that he had prior commitments that he couldn't break.

I told him about a few parties that we're invited too, that he could miss if he had to work. Then I told him the two weekend dates that were off limits - November 5-11th (our anniversary trip) and November 21st (my half marathon).

"I know better than to set up any showings our anniversary week, but I'll just have to see about if I can make it to the half marathon or not."

My jaw dropped to the floor.

"Um, no. There is no seeing. I want you there."

"Well I'm not going to turn down a chance to make money. Besides you're not doing this race for me."

Please let me say first that he's self employed - a real estate salesman. He's able to set his own hours. Also, (I'm not trying to brag, just explain why this is so upsetting) he's already made the money we need to live on this year. He could not make another dime this year and we'd be good.

So me asking him to put aside one day. Not even that - one morning, isn't really asking all that much.

It really hurts my feelings that watching me cross the finish line of my half marathon isn't a priority for him.

I've talked to my parents, and they plan on being there so at least I'll have pictorial evidence of my half to share with you guys.

So anyway, that's my week. How did yours go? Did you shrink? Be sure to head over to the Sisterhood and let us know all about it!

October 06, 2009

Fall Into Reading

I'm getting a late start on this, but I thought one great way of reaching my 2009 reading goal (52 books for the year) would be to make a list of the last 12 books I need to read before reaching my goal.

Assuming I'll do two more blog reviews (after I finish green) here is a list of the 10 books I want to read this fall:

1) Green by Ted Dekker
2) Last Orders by Graham Swift
3) Playing with the Enemy by Gary W. Moore
4) Carved in Bone by Jefferson Bass
5) Skinny Dip by Carl Haasen
6) All He Ever Wanted by Anita Shrieve
7) Plum Luck (a Stephanie Plum novel) by Janet Evanovich
8) Mere Christianity by CS Lewis
9) Someone to Watch Over Me by Judith McNaught
10) House by Frank Peretti & Ted Dekker

I've got a good mix in here - a couple of Christian fiction books, several humorous suspense novels, an author I read in college and actually wanted to read more on my own, and then Mere Christianity. A short book, but very heavy in material. I started it a few months ago and never finished it; at this point I'm just going to start over.

What do you think of the list? Have you read any of the books (I know Lois has Green)? Do you like the authors?

October 05, 2009

Meetings, Marriage, and Memories - the Tinglies

I'm gonna pause today in our love story. Instead of giving you NYC Day 3 (our first day as an engaged couple) I wanted to talk about my weekend. And how I love that almost a year into our marriage, I still get the tinglies when we snuggle.

Last night after church, Jay and I settled in on the couch to watch some TV. We'd binged at my family reunion earlier in the day and neither of us wanted dinner, so I made cheese and cracker snacks and filled the plate up with peanuts.

Remember we don't have cable, so our TV options are limited, and Sunday night is probably one of the worst nights for TV on network stations. We decided on a PBS special about the hunt for giant crocidiles. I promise it was far more interesting than it sounds, or else I would have picked up my newest book review book, Green.

Saturday night we watched Superman Returns together (can you believe I got it out of the $5 bin at Wal-Mart?) and so after the croc show went off, Jay asked if we had any other movies that we hadn't watched yet. When I said we didn't, he went to the entertainment center to get out my Quantum Leap DVD set.

"Lois and Clark? I didn't know we had this! Can we watch it tonight instead?"

He'd never seen an episode, but was still in the Superman vibe from the night before. We snuggled in and enjoyed 3 episodes together, then he watched 2 by himself after I went to bed.

It was a nice break from my calorie counting to just be a regular person and snack with my husband without thinking about it. The snuggles on the couch - the tingly feeling of knowing your world, at that moment, its perfect - were certainly worth shifting my run schedule around. (No way I was going to go to bed at 12:30 and wake up at 5:45.)

I can't describe exactly how we were snuggled. At one point my torso was laying against his legs with my head at his side, another time my head was in his lap. The important part though is that we took time out of our normal activities - calorie counting/exercise for me, working late on his computer - to just be together.

There was one major difference in the tinglies I got when we were dating and he would kiss me, and the tinglies last night. The dating tinglies were more about the anticipation of where the relationship going and wondering how he felt about me.

The married tinglies are even better (who knew?). They're about knowing that I'm with a man who loves me unquestionably. They come from the security I have in his arms. They are about finding joy in the most boring PBS shows or in the cheesiest early 90s reruns.

Love is an amazing thing.

For more love stories, head on over to Rachel's for her carnival of love.

October 02, 2009

Financial Friday

Its that time again - the first of the month when I look over our expenditures for the past month and freak out.

We had a couple of big expenses this month: we had wills prepared, purchased life insurance for Jay (woot!), and paid for underground utilities to be put in at our 5.5 acres. Those expenses caused our regular monthly budget to be doubled!

I don't like seeing our money leave like that!! (Although the subdivision will be so much nicer with underground electric.) Crunching the numbers we're exactly where we planned to be for the year, but I still see plenty of places that we could trim things down a bit, and that stresses me.

I shouldn't worry about it. Even with the those extra expenses, we're still living on about half of what we'll be earning this year. I'd tell anyone else that the were kick @$$ rock stars for achieving that - so why do I feel guilty for buying myself running gear? Why do I want to kick Jay's rear for spending $75 on tobacco?

I'm paying someone to change the oil in my car today. It desperately needs it (5,500 miles) and Jay's been too busy working to change it like he normally does. An oil change is a need - I don't get to feel guilty for that.

But that leads me to my question of the day - I really want the interior of my car cleaned up. Jay certainly doesn't have time for it. Tomorrow would be my only opportunity, but I'm not sure I'll be able to or not. Remember my list?

I'm running 8 miles tomorrow, which will take about an hour and a half, plus general household leaning for a couple of hours, plus 2-3 hours worth of flowerbed weeding. When am I going to fit in vacuuming, windexing, and cleaning the upholstery of my car?

I could pay someone to do it, but then comes the guilty. A clean car is a want, not a need. Then again maybe its worth $20-30 to get the stress off me?

What do you think?

October 01, 2009

Top Ten TV Junkie Loves

I'm really not sure I watch 10 shows, but I'll give it a try!

1. Lost

I will cry when its over.

2. Heroes

Its what gets me through the tv season till Lost comes back on in February

3. Chuck

Do I really have to wait until March of next year???

4. Flash Forward

The 2nd episode will air tonight and I'm looking forward to it. I hope this newbie lasts.

5. The Biggest Loser

Not sure why, but I love it!

6. So You Think You Can Dance

Once gets out of the audition rounds, Jay hates it. I'm a big fan.

7. Big Brother

Jay was more hooked than me, but we tried not to miss an episode.

8. Everybody Loves Raymond

In sindication, of course. Although its becoming less and less funny as it becomes my life.

9. Fraiser

I wasn't a fan while it aired, but Jay and I watch it every night we're home between the hours of 7-8. No cable makes you do strange things.

10. What Not to Wear

The one and only show I miss in my cableless life. I <3 Stacy & Clinton.

For more Thursday's Ten fun, head on over to Lora's!