Wednesday, June 27, 2007

You did what?

I had the STRANGEST dream ever last night.

I dreamed that I got a tattoo. A tattoo! Something I never ever considered getting for myself.

In my dream, I was chatting with the tattoo artist and getting the last bit of tattoo finished off. In the dream, I then looked at where the tattoo was and thought...

DANG IT! Why did I get it there? I'm NEVER going to be able to hide it from the Hubs!

It was a bouquet of flowers about 5 inches in width. On my left FOREARM! How would I ever hide that? I couldn't. As the outside observer watching my dream, I thought to myself "Dummy!"

I know people who have tattoos. I've got nothing against them. But for me (Miss Straight Lace), it's just not something I've ever wanted. So to dream that I got one is just interesting. And it wasn't a small one in an inconspicious place. It was large and on a very exposed area. I truly thought it was weird to watch myself doing what I did.

Now have YOU had a strange dream about yourself doing something you'd never thought you'd do?

Sunday, June 24, 2007

Much needed vacation

As you all know, the kidlings are gone for a week. They are spending time up with the Hubs family. 3 days with my BIL and his wife, 2 days with my ILs, and 2 days with my SIL. They even spent a whole day with their second cousins yesterday at my ILs house.

What I really like is that the kids just love seeing family. It doesn't matter if its a visit to my side or the Hubs side. They are generous with kisses and hugs. They laugh and smile and have a grand time. This is when I really appreciate them and makes me realize that my two little ones are really good kids.

Of course, the Hubs family has found out quirks about the kidlings these past few days. I've mentioned to them before that the Princess snores. When I talked about this before, my MIL asked if I was going to get her tonsils out. Huh? Uh no! She snores but she's fine. I snored when I was a kid so it's normal to me. They didn't believe me before but now they do. Not only does she snore, but she also GRINDS her teeth. Oh yeah. You can totally locate her in a dark room just by sound! As for the Bear? When he doesn't take a nap, he tends to have a restless night. He sleeps. But he tends to have cry out and toss-n-turn. Some might think he's having a night terror, but he's just dreaming. I think when he doesn't have a nap his brain is over-stimulated from the day. So we expect him to have a restless night when he doesn't nap. But it scared my BIL when it happened the other day. I guess he and his wife tried to comfort the Bear when it happened. But then they realized he was still asleep. This is what those people get for NOT listening to me when I tell them things about the kids.

Not having the kids has really allowed them to have a vacation away from home. We've never been away from the kids for 7 full days. NEVER! And some folks might wonder if we're missing them? I'm not really concerned about them. I know the kidlings are having a great time. So there's no need to worry or be concerned about them. I know they're with people who love them.

But having the kids gone has allowed the Hubs and I to reconnect. And we have. Not just in a sexual way. We're also talking more. About topics we don't get to talk about when the kids are around. About his job search. What cities he's looking for jobs in. About the possibility of moving. About where we'd live if he gets an offer for a job in a different city. Normally we'd wait until the kids were asleep before broaching any of these topics, because we don't want them to know until something is definite. And by the time the kids are asleep we're too tired to really talk about these things and we're both busy trying to finish up the things we want to do for the day.

It's been good to just be a couple for a week. To concentrate my time on my husband. My love. The man who has my heart. And this week I've been focusing on him. To just sit on the couch next to each. With no one trying to squeeze their way in the middle. And we just lay there quietly and relax. It's been nice. It's been REALLY nice.

Saturday, June 23, 2007

Stronger day by day

Y'all, I've been keeping up with my mission!

I haven't been running as much. Instead I've been walk/running. These past couple of days I've been mainly walking. But walking for almost an hour. I'm taking advantage of not having the kidlings and doing my walking first thing in the morning. The last two days I've been out for almost an hour each morning. I can already feel my thigh muscles firming up! But before I start running every day, I want to make sure my muscles and ligaments are strong. I don't want to pull something right off the bat. That'll throw me off the "getting healthy" band-wagon big time.

I'm even trying to do some additional work after my walks while I'm cooling down. Sit-ups. Push-ups. Leg lifts. Squats. Even some light weights to work my biceps/triceps/shoulders. I can already see the muscle in my upper arms getting puffy. Initially when I gain muscle, I puff up. Then as I continue working out I lean out. I just flexed my left arm. It's so cool seeing the bicep pop up taller than it's been in a long time. I've never had the wing action on my upper arms but I can see that area looking more firm.

It's pretty fulfilling to see the changes in my body. I'm on my way folks. On my way! I'm excited. Even though I did have a couple ho-hum mornings, I still went out. In the past I would have just stayed home. Now I did take one day off this week. But I was too busy that day. I had a few conference calls. I had a couple deliverables due. TOO MUCH going on! But like I said, I did have a couple morning where I didn't feel like going out but I still went. I trudged out. And I felt better once I got back home and stretched out. It felt good.

I am going to have to start out no later than 7am each day. This week it got HOT here. So that's why I was out by 6am today. Let me tell you people, around noon today the Hubs and I went out to run some errands. It was already 107 degrees when we were out. So since it's getting super hot now, I have to get out as soon as possible each day.


Here's what I've done this week...

Monday: 25 minute walk with Princess (I had to carry her 1/4 mile because she got tired)

Tuesday: 40 minute walk -- 15 minute floor work

Wednesday: Day off

Thursday: 40 minute walk/run -- ran 2/3 of the way & walked 1/3 of the way -- 20 minute floor work

Friday: 50 minute walk -- 15 minute floor work

Saturday: 1 hour walk -- 30 minute floor work


Did I tell you that I already am "friendly" with some of the other regular morning walkers. There's a guy who always wears a baseball cap. There's a gal with a new little one in a stroller and her two dogs. There's an older couple that bring walking sticks with them. But I was surprised this morning to see the guy with the baseball cap. I went out at 6am this morning (normally I'm out around 7am after dropping off the Bear at daycare). So we both got an early start as it was the weekend.

So I'm on my way! Getting fit as each day passes. Yeah!

Monday, June 18, 2007

T-minus 20 hours

By this time tomorrow, the kids will be gone. Off on an adventure. AWAY from us. They'll be with the Hubs family. For a WEEK!

The Hubs and I are happy that the kidlings will be together while they're away. They're a good team. They comfort each other when they're tired. They hug each other when they're happy. They love each other immensely. Even when they fight. They always make up.

But the Hubs and I can't wait to be alone. Just to take care of each other. Take care of ourselves. We only need to think of ONE other person for 7 days! We only need to cook for two. We can wake up when we want to -- not at the crack of dawn 5:30am when the Bear decides that the day has started.

Now the Hubs and I aren't taking vacation. I still have to work. He still has to work. But it'll be nice. We're thinking about going out to dinner one night. To an ADULT restaurant. One with no kids' section. We'll be able to both eat hot meals at the same time. One of us will be able to drink an adult beverage or two.

AND the best thing of all? We can have some major adult time without having to think about what the kids are doing OR where they're sleeping. You parents who have a child sleeping in your bedroom know what I'm talking about. Woohoo!

But I've got the kids "swim" bag all packed. Two swimsuits each. Swim vests. Sunscreen.I've got their quiet activity bag packed as well. Books. Paper. Markers/crayons. Flashcards. Coloring books. All I've got to do now is get all their clothes packed! AHH!

Saturday, June 16, 2007

I'm so hungry!

We ate dinner around 6pm today. We had barbequed chicken wings, mac&cheese, and apples. I only ate 2 wings, but I accompanied that with some salad with strawberries. I also ate a half cup of mac & cheese. I couldn't help it.

But now? It's 11:30pm and I'm starving. What to do? What to do? I ate 6 pretzels. I couldn't ignore it. I was WAY starving. So I conceded to eat a little salty snack. Y'all know I'm trying to get a little healthier and lose a little weight. So I thought 6 pretzels would be just enough to kill the hunger pangs.

Now what do YOU do when you're starving at night? Ignore it? Eat something salty? Eat chocolate? Have a glass of milk?

Where's it go?

The other evening, the Bear and the Hubs were playing "tennis" on the driveway. They actually use one of those orange golf practice balls because the Bear hits a tennis ball WAY too far. The Hubs was fielding the ball out up the street and decided to let one fly. He hit the ball up in the air towards the front of the garage where the Bear was at. The Bear was chatting with me and wasn't paying attention. The ball? Hit him square on the top of the Bear's head.

What was dat?

That's all he said in a sing-song voice. It was classic. Of all the places to land too. The Hubs was at least 30 feet away. So there was a lot of space in between the two of them.

It's like how they tell you at an ice hockey game: "Always be aware of where the puck is at..."

Hopefully, my little guy pays attention when he's playing - no matter what sport it is!

Friday, June 15, 2007

Trying something old

When I was in high school, I was part of the track team. I was actually on the 4x100 relay race team. I was the 5th of a 4 person team. A team that was NEVER, EVER sick or injured. I only ever ran in two meets. But it was all good. I got to go to all the meets. All the events. I was always prepared. This meant that all I ever did was practice. And to tell you the truth, it was the most fun I ever had.

The people on the track team were diverse. We had big guys who were previously on the football team doing shot put. We had the cross-country runners doing the distance runs. A wide variety of people. And they were ALL a blast. It was fun doing our warm-ups as a team. That was the only time we were able to spend together each afternoon practice. Because after warm-ups we'd all go to our own individual event coaches and work with them. So we'd all converge onto the football field and lay around and stretch a little and loosen up. We'd listen to the head coach. Then we'd do a mile run to get ready for our REAL work. A mile run. For WARM UP! We'd talk while we ran. It wasn't a slow jog either. We'd go at a pretty good clip.

Once track season was over (for junior & senior year), I continued to run on my own about every other day. It was routine. I'd just run.

RUN, Forest! RUN!

No. I wouldn't run endlessly. I'd only go about 3 to 5 miles each time depending on how I felt. But it felt so good. Just me. Feeling to my feet hit the pavement. Listening to my breath going in and out. Actually, it was more of an in-in-in-out cadence. I'd go three steps and breath in and do an exale on the 4th step. Weird? It was like a mantra of sorts. Kept me focused on the rhythm. The sound. So if I had a side-cramp, I'd just concentrate on my breath and the pain would subside.

I wouldn't really think during my runs. I'd just go. And think of my steps. And concentrate on my breathing. Empty thoughts? A place your mind never normally goes during the day. A moment of just being. Living. Quietly being.

I think I've been missing that feeling. So...on Monday I went and bought myself some actually running shoes. And YES...the shoes were on sale. I did try on a bunch of running shoes that were on sale. Remember, I'm a 6.5 WIDE (think of them as Duck feet)! But the only ones that were comfortable on my feet? It was the same brand I used to wear when I was in track many moons ago. Of course, it wasn't the same style shoes but just the fact that the only ones I felt good in were the same brand that I used to wear.

On Tuesday, I jogged about a mile. Non-stop! I went at a slow pace so I wouldn't have to stop.

On Wednesday, I took a walk on that same route. My legs were stiff from the day before, but I knew I had to do something to keep myself motivated. AND so that I could work through the stiffness. AND keep my legs from getting even more tight.

On Thursday, I jogged the mile route. A little bit faster. Probably a smidgen faster. And probably only fast enough that I would notice! I stopped a little short but that was okay.

Today? I walked a different mile route. And this evening? I did a light upper body work-out. Not EVERYTHING that I would have done 10 years ago. Really light stuff. Bicep curls. Tricep extensions. Some squats. Sit-ups. Leg raises.

Tomorrow? I'm hoping to take a quick run before I have breakfast. Hopefully, the Hubs will hold down the fort while I sneak off and do that. Take those 20 minutes for myself.

And you know what's inspired me? That show The Biggest Loser. Those people are dropping weight and making HUGE changes in their bodies and in their lives. It inspires me to see them consciously make that decision. It's a tremendous struggle for some. Realizing that with all that exercise comes a lot of pain. That weight loss takes time. Commitment. That's a word I need to get re-acquainted with. I'm hoping that I can commit myself this time around. I dropped the ball earlier in the year with Summer's challenge. I only stuck that out for 2 weeks. But I'm hoping [crossing fingers] that I'll keep myself on the path. And tonight's repeat episode from the latest season had the BEST line.

If you're going to start something, you should finish it

My goal is to lose about 15 pounds. Not through starvation. I love food WAY too much for that. But by adding exercise into my daily routine, which I have NOT done in years and years. Hopefully, adding those 20-30 minutes of aerobic exercise into my daily routine will get me on my way. Improve my cardiovascular health. Get my blood flowing. Raise my metabolism. And the stretching afterwards will help me get my flexibility back. I've started on my way...I'm hoping I have the strength to finish it.

Wish me luck folks....

Sunday, June 10, 2007


Did you watch the Smackdown on Bravo? The Top Chef special?

It was GOOD! Go Season 1!

What was unfortunate was how Marcel tried to smacktalk/joke with the other chefs and they were NOT having it. It just made him look like a jerk. But I can see where he's coming from. He probably thought it was all in good fun kidding around. But he didn't "read" his contestants well and didn't realize they wouldn't appreciate his type of joking.

This episode reinforced my belief that Ilan wasn't the person who should have won Season 2. He is so stuck with that one style of regional cooking. STUCK! I'm not a chef and even I know that duck is normally cooked to pink & never well done. For ME to know that is huge. And when he took some food out of a container in the pantry and popped it into his mouth? Oy!

What I didn't like was that LeeAnne wasn't the 4th person on the Season1. But I was happy to see that she's working behind the scenes now on the show. She'll get to see the drama first hand from the other side of the fence. But with LeeAnne being out, that allowed Stephen to slide into that open spot. It was funny watching his straight laced up-tight style next to Marcel's free-flowing style. HILARIOUS!

What was even more hilarious was watching Dave WIG out when the servers took his dishes out. Oh my gosh! It looked like he was going to have a heart-attack. I was rolling on the couch out of laughter.

Spilling. We're spilling.

But it was really fun seeing everyone again. If you have an opportunity to see the show? Watch it!

Tuesday, June 5, 2007

Directionally challenged

My husband is directionally challenged. He won't admit it, but he is. He'll make a wrong turn and won't admit to the mess up. The last time we drove up to visit his folks, he went a different way. He went northbound on an overpass above the highway and continued north. When I good and well that his parents house is SOUTH of that freeway.

Me: Uh....honey? Are you sure you're going the right way?
Hubs: Yeah. There house is on X street, that's up this way.

We continue northbound and he finally checks the street names at the 4-way we're stopped at. Guess what we did? That's right! A U-TURN!

So this lack of a general sense of direction runs in his family. My MIL is horrible at giving directions and getting places. That's why my FIL always drives.

This weekend, my SIL did her first triathalon. She ended up making wrong turn at the beginning of the bike leg (the second part of the race). And ended up going 2 miles in the wrong direction. Did she not notice that there were no other riders? There were no spectators? That the way she was going was not marked? Uh-no. She went TWO MILES until she realized she'd gone the wrong way. Which means she ended up riding 4 extra miles on her bike. Now for you folks who do triathalons....the way you need to go is pretty clearly marked, right? I wonder if anyone else followed my SIL going the wrong way?

Now are YOU the type to go the same way as others are when you're going somewhere? Be it at an amusement park....or a walk...or a race...whatever. OR are you the type who memorizes the path before you go somewhere? OR the type who constantly checks the map as you're going? Me? I'm the kind who checks the map the night before and memorizes main streets or landmarks. This way I have a sense of where I'm at even if I do get lost.

I'm still chuckling....TWO miles out off the race course...

Shaking my head in confusion

I just heard about a wedding on the Hubs side of the family.

The long-lost daughter of the Hubs uncle (my MILs brother) & aunt is getting hitched. This is the daughter the two had when they were 17 years old. The Hubs aunt was shuttled away to another city and the daughter was put up for adoption. Yes. It was that taboo event that families did 30-40 years ago. Hiding a pregnant teenage daughter away.

The Hubs uncle and aunt eventually married and had 1 son and adopted 2 girls. Anyway, 6 years ago they finally found their daughter. They'd been looking for her for a couple years and found her still living in their city perimeter. They reunited with her and found that she was married with 3 kids. My husband's cousin has kept in touch with my MILs family.

The Hubs and I just found out that my husband's cousin is now divorced. Turns out that her husband realized he was not happy in the marriage. They divorced. We found out he's currently getting a gender change. And my husband's cousin is engaged to another man and will be getting married next month! AND she'll be moving to our state!

WOW! Things like this confuse me...but it takes all kinds to make this world go 'round!

Saturday, June 2, 2007

Fun time!

Guess what we did this past Sunday? Went to LEGOLAND! Surprised

The Princess had been there before, but the Bear didn't even know that place existed. He was SO excited when we got there. The Hubs, the kids, LilSis, Shorty, Kay, Theo, and I arrived out around 11am. We didn't leave until almost 5pm.

It was a good time. We did the fire truck race. And it was WORK! The girls got in one truck. The Hubs didn't do it so the boys team was down one. And guess what? We girls WON the entire race! LilSis and I were out of breath when we finished it. You folks who've done this particular race know what I'm talking about.

We then hit the tower pull. Little did I know when we got in line that I'd have to use my arms again! I was pretty out of breath by the end of that one. Thankfully, the Prin didn't want to go up and down too many times! We did the kiddy airplanes after that. Then the twirling pirate ship. LilSis and I didn't ride that one. The Bear just LOVED it! The Princess was skittish on it bit didn't complain on the ride. After that we got some lunch. Then hit the fair games. We didn't realize there was an entire water area! So for those of you who ahven't been to Legoland in a while? Bring swimsuits and swim diapers for your little ones. They'll have a BLAST in the water area! This way you'll be able to sit and relax for a bit while they continue to burn some energy! We walked around and saw most of the displays. We walked by the roller coaster and the Bear wanted to go on it! But we hit the teacups right next to it. And unfortunately, the Bear wasn't tall enough for it. 42 inches required! He was pretty upset as the other kids were able to get on. We ended up having to stop turning about midway through as the Prin got too dizzy and nervous. She felt like we were going to hit another teacup. So we stopped turning and just laughed and laughed. Kay and Shorty got on the catapult ride (level 2 of 5 due to Kay's height). I'm sure the Bear would have gone on it if we'd let him! We ended the day with the water boat ride. Oh yes! Somewhere in the middle of all this, the kids got their faces painted. Who wouldn't stop to get this done for their kids?

We were SO exhausted by the end of the day. I would highly recommend Legoland to anyone who has kids 10 or younger.

Friday, June 1, 2007

The screeching meant something

This Memorial Weekend we drove out to visit with my family. It was a good visit. Did me a lot of good to see my folks and get away from home and work.

But like I said, we drove my car out there. We headed out around 10:30am and got there by 4:30pm. It was really nice leaving in the morning instead of the late afternoon. And arriving close to dinnertime instead of late at night. It was all very nice. The kids were happy and not cranky. The Hubs was fresh and alert to drive the entire way. VERY nice.

Anyway, fast forward to the next day. We were supposed to meet up at BigSis#2 house to celebrate her birthday. But FIRST we wanted to check out the new house my folks, LilSis & Shorty were going to move into in October. LilSis came with us as Shorty was out at a track meet that day. We probably spent a good 45 minutes looking at the three models - not just their model. As we were about to head on out, the car rolled and made a strange noise. The Hubs stopped the car and we all looked at each other. He took his foot off the brake and the car rolled again and we heard the sound again. The car also shook as we rolled forward. Bad, bad, bad!

We ended up calling a tow truck because we didn't want to cause any more damage. We could actually see a scratch etched into the rotor all the way around. Thankfully, we were at the models so we could wait for the tow truck. Thankfully, Shorty was finished at the track meet so he could pick up LilSis and the kids and go up to BigSis#2's house. I stayed with the Hubs in case we needed to rent a car or something. Also, this would probably be the only time we'd have alone and awake together the entire weekend. We waited about 20 minutes for the tow truck and got to a tire shop that also did brake work. AND they were able to get to work on our vehicle right when we got there. Whew! BIG relief.

They analyzed the problem. Not good. Metal on metal. THAT was the sound we heard and the shake we felt. It would take them about 1.5 hours to fix, so we hung out. The Hubs and I realized that the screeching sound we'd heard the 2 weeks prior on our drive up to see his family was the precursor of the issue we were now having. It was the warning we hadn't listened to. But it was all good. WE were together when it happened. I wasn't alone with the kids. The issue didn't happen when we were driving up in the mountains. Blessings!

Once the car got fixed, we headed up to BigSis#2's house. The kids were having a blast with their cousins, their aunts, their uncles, and my folks. It was a good time, even with that little brake issue. It was a nice day.