10 on Tuesday

6.7.2011-New-Shoes_Web

1. Mama got a new pair of shoes! Not really that exciting, but I’ve got shin splints after switching from treadmill to sidewalk and going from 0 to 3 miles/run after 4 weeks off to nurse my aching knee at the same time. I know I’ve got at least 150 running miles on my shoes from the last few months, plus some walking miles from the tail end of training and walking in the last 3 Day I did, so I must have been somewhere in the 300-500 range. It was time for new shoes! Props to Marathon Sports for keeping my shoe on file, too, so that I don’t have to remember what I’m wearing and I don’t have to wait to be fitted during their weekend rush. :)

2. Mama has also been making some progress on her Spring To Do List, despite work and life getting a little hectic over the last few weeks. I have photos to prove some of it (pics or it didn’t happen!), so look for me to be doing some back posting over the next few days. Hopefully I’ll have the time and energy to get that done…

3. Last weekend I got to meet a friend and coworker for the first time, and it was so fun! I always find myself struggling to explain some of my work-related relationships. There are so many people I “work with”, but not really – we work in the same building, but we don’t interact at all to actually work. Then there are all the people that I actually work with, but I have never laid eyes on because we work in different cities. I was pretty excited when I heard that my coworker Heather had planned a long weekend in Boston with her fiancee and friends, so I gave her a list of places to eat while they were here and then made plans to get together with them for drinks on Saturday night. Which then turned into making plans to get together with them for lunch at Sowa on Sunday (food trucks!). It was so great to put an actual person with the name and the voice – as much as we try to share pictures once in a while, it’s not the same as actually getting to spend time face to face with people.

4. Last fall I found a running club in Quincy and ran with them occasionally. It was definitely a group trying to get off the ground, but I really loved everyone I met through them. This spring our little group has been growing, and tonight I had eight people at my run! I was so excited! It’s such a great group – no one get left behind or runs alone. There’s always someone along side you cheering you on when you start to drag or to chat with to take your mind off the running itself. I’m so glad I found these guys, and I’m so excited that our little group is growing from the four regulars we were over the fall/winter!

5. Also? Running with these folks is making my pokey butt move faster!

6. We put the window fan in our living room window recently, and it must blow bugs into the room pretty often. Champ has been doing a lot of bug hunting (and eating). I’m pretty sure that some of the time she’s really hunting the air, but I just watcher her swat a bug right out of midair. She has now chased it under the couch, and hopefully she’ll eat it soon because I really would rather not have random bugs living under the couch.

7. Pete and I are getting into the grilling habit again! It’s pretty awesome, and I’m determined to get us a picnic table for the backyard this weekend. So far it’s been brats or burgers, but please share your favorite things to grill so we can expand our grilling repertoire!

8. Speaking of Pete, he bought himself a Kindle the weekend before last and he has been a reading fiend ever since!!! I, on the other hand, have reverted back to reading printed books. Partly due to getting a book from the library I couldn’t find on the Kindle, and partly because my eyes were starting to get angry at me for spending so much of the day staring at a monitor/screen/TV. They have been appreciating the rest, but my back and shoulders have not been appreciating the heavier book that I just started yesterday!

9. We’re heading to Maine on vacation in a week and a half, and it totally snuck up on me! It’s going to be a well timed and much needed vacation based on what’s happening at work over the next few weeks, and I’m pretty much counting down the minutes until our Girls’ Day massages. In fact, it’s taking all kinds of restraint I never knew I had to not book something ASAP and wait for that! So excited for vacation for so many reasons!

10. #1 reason to be excited for vacation? Pete and I get to sleep in a caboose. I KNOW. It’s okay to be completely jealous.

10 on Tuesday

5.3.2011-Bookmark

1. I totally made that little bookmark! It was inspired by this blog post, although I didn’t actually read that post or follow the instructions when I made mine, I just chopped the corner off an envelope and made the rest of it up. It was quick and dirty, but it totally works and it makes me smile when I open up my book (yeah, I’m reading an actual book right now and not on my phone).

2. Last week I went to a book discussion at the library with a new friend, Katie. It’s a series called Not For Children Only, and it’s (in case you didn’t figure this out) an adult discussion group about children’s books. The April discussion (last week) was on The Secret Garden, which I read last December and looooooooved. This month’s book is The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe, which I picked up at Borders yesterday. While I was there, I figured I should really start at the beginning, so I also picked up The Magician’s Nephew. I started reading it on the way to work this morning and I’m already halfway through. Partly because it’s a children’s book (I’m no speed reader), and partly because it’s so fun that I have been avoiding some chores in order to sit on the couch and read. :)

3. Speaking of chores, I had a very productive weekend cleaning and purging and organizing. Having guests come to stay is great motivation to finally turn the guest room back into a guest room – over the winter it somehow became more of a dumping ground/storage room than an office/guest room! I’m happy to report that it’s almost ready for guests (I still need to make the bed).

4. The cleaning and purging and organizing over the weekend also led to my finally completing a few projects around the house that certainly aren’t necessary before we have guests, but I figured it was as good a time as any. Some of these projects involved spray painting, and have you ever spray painted before? It takes patience. I don’t have patience. My spray painting turned out okay despite my lack of patience.

5. One of the long overdue projects around the house that I finally got to was getting a print of this photo of my grandpa and putting it in a frame. I have a bunch of my grandpa’s cameras on a shelf in my living room, including the one that is in the photo. Now that photo is framed and resting on the shelf behind the camera. :)

6. That photo is one of many that my father had scanned and cleaned up through ScanDigital. I found a whole lot of others that I love as I was going through the DVD I have of them, and ended up putting some of my faves up here (Dad can look at those and fact check me!).

7. In addition to framing pictures, I also found frames this weekend for a few original art pieces we bought from friends over the winter. One of the frames looks great, the other is going to be temporary until I take it to be framed professionally I think. In the meantime, it looks just fine in the cheapo frame it’s in….and will look even better when I get it hung on the wall above the couch!

8. Today I did some serious toy/game shopping. I had a list of six kiddos that need birthday gifts in the next two months, which led to a not small Amazon order. Now I only have one kiddo left to buy something for, but it looks like it will be a brick and mortar purchase for that one. At least I know what I’m looking for now!

9. Is it totally wrong that as I was buying these gifts, I was thinking how fun it was going to be to play with some of them myself (you know, if the kids let me)? I figure that’s totally right! You know it’s a good gift if it’s so fun you still want to play with it as an adult, right?

10. Yikes! I just heard the downstairs neighbor come in, which means it’s past my bedtime. Guess it’s time to hit publish. :)

March Madness

1. I’ve been on a roll with the gym lately! I have a little widget for CardioTrainer that takes my workouts (see above) and puts on the front screen of my phone how many calories I’ve burned in the last seven days. I am very motivated by watching that little widget stay platinum and gold rather than turning blue when your calorie count gets low!

2. My knees aren’t very happy about this gym going, unfortunately. I’m pretty sure this has a lot to do with a tight IT Band, because it doesn’t seem to be a problem except when it’s been a week or longer since I’ve done some yoga. Hopefully the gym finds someone to replace the Tuesday night yoga instructor when she goes on maternity leave, but if not I’ll have to make sure I work in at least one night a week at Healing Tree.

3. I got to spend Saturday afternoon at a baby shower for my friend Kate, who is due in just under a month. I, however, am hoping for an early baby because I would be more than happy to win the pool. I gave her a nice early delivery date and a small baby…because I am an awesome friend! Kate’s father-in-law, who happens to deliver babies for a living, wasn’t convinced I was going in the right direction with a pre-due date delivery. I guess we have no choice but to wait and see!

4. Saturday was a busy day – we got to spend the Saturday night at karaoke celebrating our friend Jamie’s birthday. For those of you that don’t know Jamie, he’s really a karaoke legend in JP, so that was obviously a fun night!

5. Sunday I stayed in my PJs until 1:00. Not because I was hung over or tired, but because I didn’t really want to drag myself and my laundry to the laundry mat, and so I laid around reading until I couldn’t put it off any longer. It was kind of awesome lounging around in PJs until one in the afternoon.

6. We’ve had some nice warm weather over the last week, and there’s almost no snow left on the ground – a few of the giant plow piles are now very small piles, but you would hardly notice them when you’re walking down our street now. It’s nice to be able to wear real shoes and boots around instead of living in my snow boots. One of which no longer stays zipped for more than five minutes.

7. Yesterday, however, it snapped back to winter cold, and the 30 MPH wind gusts didn’t help. The wind is so crazy in the financial district – all the office buildings turn the streets into a wind tunnel. I was crossing the street to get to work in the morning and I started in the crosswalk when I stepped into the street, but when I got to the other side I was six feet away from it because the wind had pushed me diagonal across the street. And I’m not exactly a light weight (just ask my doctor!).

8. Speaking of weight, I hadn’t originally been super concerned when my official weight at the doctors office was my highest ever. I’d bought a scale over the summer and it was reading 10 pounds less than the doctors scale, so I attributed it to being fully clothed, an off day/week, and a different scale. And then a week or so ago I weighed myself at the gym. That scale agreed with the doctors scale. When I got home, I weighed myself on my own scale…and it read 10 pounds less. Oops! I guess I have a “vanity scale” – makes you feel great about yourself, even if it is a lie.

9. I mentioned a while back (or at least I think I did) that I’ve been reading a bunch of “classics” on my phone over the past few months – The Secret Garden, Anne of Green Gables, etc… I started Little Women a while ago, and it’s taking me forever to finish. I feel like I should love this book, and I know people that love it and read it over and over again…but it’s just not holding my attention. I’ve been flipping between it and some cheesy chic lit for the last few weeks. I kind of just wish I could stick with it and finish it, but I just don’t have the attention span to do that.

10. Seeing as I live with someone who is an Iowa alum that was born and raised in Wisconsin (and happens to be an avid football fan), this video of a college football game narrated as a nature film totally cracked me up. You know what doesn’t crack me up though? The prospect of an 18 game NFL season. And that’s enough football talk from me…for the next year or so.

To bed!

10 on Tuesday

1. I think I’ve spent the entire last week not being sure what day of the week it is. I spent about half of the day today thinking it was Wednesday and the other half knowing it was Tuesday. It made sense last week when it was a 4-day work week, but there’s no good explanation for it this week.
2. Last night when I packed my gym bag I didn’t pack my sneakers. On Tuesdays there is a yoga class at 5:30, and I really love the instructor…since I was going to yoga I didn’t need sneakers. I spent all day today wishing I had packed my sneakers because I really felt like running on the treadmill after work (what?! I know. Who actually wants to run on a treadmill?). The afternoon slowly ticked away, I headed to the gym, changed into my yoga clothes, and I went to sign in….and the woman working at the front desk told me that yoga was cancelled. And I couldn’t run on the treadmill because I hadn’t packed my sneakers.
3. The bright side is that I got home early enough and had time to make a real dinner, do the dishes, and clean up the kitchen. That was nice, especially since it doesn’t happen very often now that I’m going to the gym after work.
4. If you haven’t seen The Social Network, you should put it in your Netflix queue, hit Redbox, or do whatever you do to see DVDs these days. It’s a good movie (hush Leyre, you’re the only one in America that doesn’t think so) – interesting story, well acted, well edited. Also, shot in Boston! Also also, who else thinks that when Trent Reznor was giving his Oscar acceptance speech, he should have told David Fincher that he wanted to thank him like an animal? Anyway, I recently came across The World Is Obsessed With Facbeook, a quick video that shows the scope of what Facebook has become, which seems so have a lot more impact when you know at least a little bit of the story of how it all got started. Which is why you should watch The Social Network if you haven’t already.
5. I’m pretty sure I’ve talked about My Milk Toof before, but in case I haven’t you need to check it out. It cracks me up on a regular basis. Also, there’s a book coming out this month, which is super awesome. And for your viewing enjoyment and to get a taste of the awesomeness of Ickle and Lardee, watch this video that was put together for the book promo.
6. Barley is passed out in my lap right now. His front paws and head are draped over my right forearm, and he doesn’t react at all when they move as I’m typing. He must be extra pooped, probably from the excitement of having a GIANT plastic shopping bag to play in/with/under for the last few days. The bag has been migrating from the hallway to the kitchen and back again, and sometimes when you walk be the bag all unsuspecting, a cat jumps out and scares the daylights out of you. Apparently scaring the crap out of me is awesome fun if you have four legs and a tail that won’t stop twitching.
7. Today being March 1st, I’m really cutting it close with accomplishing stuff from my Winter To Do List! I’ve kept up the crock pot cooking, but I’ve been slacking off on everything else on the list. It’s going to be a busy first few weeks of March!
8. Speaking of a busy March, the social calendar seems to have filled up faster this month than usual as well. Baby showers and birthday parties and friends in town, yikes! It should be fun, and I think I’ve managed to space things out enough to not end up completely worn out and overwhelmed.
9. The weather has been more tolerable lately, as well, which helps with the not being overwhelmed bit. I feel like the winter can’t really be ending because we haven’t had any extended cold snaps yet. There were only a few short spells of below zero days, and even those were few and far between. Is it really possible we’ll escape a New England weather without me whining about wanting to move to a warmer climate?
10. Maybe the lesson learned this winter is to always buy an awesome new winter coat halfway through. I mean, how can you be grumpy when you get to put on a super cute, super warm coat with a faux fur trimmed hood every morning? Right? Or has someone been sneaking Prozac into my drinking water?

10 on Tuesday

1. Before we really get rolling: a confession. I started this list of 10 last Tuesday, but I haven’t been carrying my camera often (see below), so I didn’t have a picture until today.

2. It’s been a few weeks since I posted my Winter To Do List, and I already missed one week of using the crock pot. I’m going to give myself a pass – if I average once/week I’m okay with it. I’ve been using the recipes from Not Your Mothers Slow Cooker Recipes for Two with a lot of success. Risotto without an hour of standing and stirring at the stove? Yes please!

3. As far as progress on my other To Do List items go, there has been little. I do now have recommendations for a Vietnamese restaurant (thanks to my Vietnamese coworker) to try, and have found friends who are interested in accompanying me for ice skating, the Americas Wing at the MFA, and the Freedom Trail. Time to start picking dates!

4. I went back to the gym last week for only the second time this month. My knees were not happy with me for it. On the bright side, I finally figured out a routine I feel comfortable with (gym after work, change into dry/warm sweats for the T ride, and shower at home) and sorted out how to entertain myself while I’m there. There are only two TVs visible from the cardio equipment and they usually have on ESPN or MSNBC. Stocks and sports – probably the two things I am least interested in watching! The last season of Mad Men, though? That I’m very happy to watch, even if it’s on my little two-ish inch iPod screen.

5. The gym going is great, but it is also not-so-great in that it’s the primary reason I haven’t been carrying my camera. Once I pack my gym gear into my bag, there’s no room left for my camera. The bright side of this is that it has confirmed my desire to buy a smaller point and shoot, so I’ve been reading a lot of reviews over the past week. I didn’t ever think I would be in the market for a point and shoot again, but it turns out that having a pocket-size (or close to pocket-size) point and shoot means I take a whole lot more pictures. I sat down at the beginning of January to put together my annual “Year in the Life of Sarah and Pete” photo book and realized that I didn’t take pictures of our events and outings last year. I took plenty of pictures for myself, but they aren’t pictures that in any way represent what Pete and I actually did last year. I got tired of lugging around my DSLR with the heavier of my lenses, which also happens to be the most versatile but is least often actually on my camera. Hopefully I can make a camera decision soon and remedy this!

6. I have been reading a lot lately, using the Kindle App on my phone. I always have my phone with me, so I end up reading for a few minutes here and there while I’m waiting in line for my Starbucks or for the elevator, and reading in tight spots (like on the T at rush hour) is much easier. The catch is that I hate to cough up more than five dollars for an electronic book. It’s a file! The production costs can’t be that high. Why should I pay as much, or even more, than it would cost me to buy the same physical book?! This has lead to my reading a lot of classics – books that fall under public domain – which are available for free or super cheap (similar to the Librivox audio books). Some of them I remember reading when I was younger,  and all of them have been fun and refreshing reading. I knocked out four of the eight Anne of Green Gables books before Christmas, got quickly sucked into The Secret Garden after New Years, and most recently I’ve settled quickly into the fun of The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes.

7. It’s been such a snowy winter (and I love it, I’m sorry for everyone that doesn’t, but snow is what makes the freezing cold winters worth it in my mind!) that my boots have been getting daily wear more or less since I got back from Virginia after Christmas. My poor boots…on Saturday the pull tab on one of the zippers came right off in my hand when I was putting them on. It’s been replaced with a paperclip, which doesn’t seem to be holding up very well. Oops! Maybe it was the result of rust/whatever after a certain wintery romp a while back, or maybe it was just time – I think this is their fifth New England winter, after all.

8. Speaking of last Saturday, Pete and I spent most of our day at the movies. We saw both True Grit and The Fighter, and they were both really good. You should go see them. Also, going to the movies twice in one day is crazy fun.

9. Historically I’ve never had a problem sleeping. Pete jokes that I’m out the second my head hits the pillow. Lately, this has not been so true. For about the last month, there has been at least one night each week where I just can’t fall asleep, so I move to the couch and watch TV until I’m sleepy enough to go back to bed. It appears as though 4am is the magic falling asleep time on these night. This has lead to me working my way very quickly through Brothers & Sisters (from the start) on Netflix Instant. Rob Lowe? He’s awfully attractive.

10. These late nights on the couch have lead to a lot of time cuddling with Barley. The second I give up on sleeping and come out of the bedroom, he’s glued to me. And his favorite place to be is not just curled up on top of me, but under the blanket with me. Where he does his best impression of a fire ball, because he gives off a whole lot of heat for such a little guy!!!