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Monday, December 31, 2012

On 2012...

So this has been a pretty interesting year for yours truly (but really, aren't all years interesting?). Much has happened - I have moved, completely immersed myself in a new job (that I'd actually started at the end of 2011), and discovered a new appreciation for kale. I've had quite a few over-the-top rants and many fun, magical moments. Here are some of the more meaningful things I've learned this year:

1) Kale is the best vegetable ever. Nobody can argue this. It is delicious when cooked with brown sugar and apple cider vinegar and also amazing in a salad, with lots of avocado. This wonderful veggie has LOADS of health benefits and is jam packed with calcium, potassium and other super-awesome things.

2) I can rock fur. Not real fur, fake fur of course. But I can rock it. Especially furry legwarmer boot things. Didn't buy any yet but I have tried them on at the stripper store. Yes, the stripper store. (Let me note that this revelation came far earlier than 2012 but it was so incredibly meaningful I could not resist sharing in this post).

3) Immersion experiences are awesome, but don't push it too hard when it comes to work. Taking care of oneself should always come first. This is, of course, much easier said than done. Yoga helps A LOT (unfortunately, discovered this at the END of 2012 - should have started much earlier). That said, my job rocks and I've met some of the greatest people EVER through my work!

4) It's okay to put up lights year round, as long as it is done in a tasteful way (the extent of "tasteful" being defined by said decorator, of course. For example, if you live in a camper - go nuts). Lights are sparkly, therefore ALWAYS acceptable. In my sparkly world, one of the first things I did in when we moved into our condo was to string white lights around our curtain rod in the living room, globe lights around our hutch, and starry lights around our bedroom curtains. It really makes for a fun atmosphere!

5) Reading for pleasure definitely pleases and sparkles. I read, like, 5 books this year for pure pleasure!!! And not one of them was 50 Shades of Grey (although I hear it is, um, quite pleasurable). After spending 5 years reading for educational purposes, it was nice to actually enjoy books for the sake of enjoyment.

6) It's important to reward oneself on a daily basis with little treats. SO important. You want the cupcake? Eat the cupcake. And quit your bitching about it sitting on your hips and ass (this is really relevant to yours truly) - I GUARANTEE you one cupcake will not expand your waistline.

7) Don't exercise because you have to, do it because you want to, and not to excess. For much of this year I obsessed over logging at least 30 miles of running a week. Not really sure why - I only ran one half marathon and a bunch of 5K's, but for whatever reason felt it was an absolute necessity that I logged a certain number of weekly miles (and if I didn't log some weeks would beat myself up over it and then try to log extra miles the following week). There's some real awesome self-care, Lady. Well, guess what ended up happening? I sprained my ankle twice this year AND ran through a stress fracture in my shin. RAN THROUGH IT. So because of my awesome decisions I ended up doing PT and NOT running for the last 2 months of the year. And ya know what, it wasn't that bad. As mentioned in #3, yoga helps. A lot. 

8) I don't care what you say, Here Comes Honey Boo Boo is amazing. I watched every episode and LOVED each one. Anyone who plays games like "guess who's breath" and is creative enough to make spaghetti sauce using butter, ketchup and road kill is cool in my book. Calling lady parts "biscuits"? Wish I'd thought of it first. And shopping at the dump? Hey, it's smart AND economical. Haters gonna hate.


That's all I got - stay tuned for more sparkly things in 2013. Happy New Year!!!

Sunday, December 30, 2012

Do it yo'self - Make something old kinda funky!

So this old hutch is one that has been in my family for 3 generations. My mom began to stain it several years back but never finished, so basically Chris and I have had a crappy, unfinished hutch in our apartments for 10 years. Can you believe it took me 10 YEARS to do ANYTHING to this old thing? I'd had every intention of staining it but just kept coming up with excuses. Well I finally made a move!

This was the before (completed the sanding - just as I was starting the first coat of paint). See how crappy it looks? There's even a knob missing.

This was the midpoint (first color done - a pale pink)

After the pale pink, I tried using a "weathering" glaze, but when I painted on the top coat (a chocolate brown), the weathering didn't really show up (boo!!!!) so I gave it a weathered look by beating it up a bit with a screwdriver (quite cathartic) and sanding a lot of the edges. I also got some super cute crystal knobs from Hobby Lobby that worked out pretty well :) and YES, that is Gizmo.

AND to boot, I reupholstered the dining room chairs (also very old) in a pink and chocolate damask fabric that sorta matches the hutch!!

How fun was this??!!

Saturday, December 22, 2012

It's my first CAT-URDAY!!

In honor of my first Caturday post, I wanted to share a few pics I made with this amazing app called "Cat Effects." Yes, I know, it's completely lame that I've poured ANY time into this but I've found it to be terribly addictive. The best is when Chris and I are in a room together and I send him a picture of himself with a mountain lion in the background and I'm all, "hey, hon, be careful going to the bathroom because, ya know, there's a mountain lion chilling in the hallway right behind you."

So in the spirit of this, thought I'd share a few of my most proudest creations:

Chris thinks he's just enjoying a cold one, but little does he know, he's being stalked from behind...

My dad is one hard-core dude! To get this close to a tiger (and a pissed off one at that) takes GUTS.

David (brother-in-law) enjoyed the company of more than just yours truly after his slice of pizza. Cuteness overload alert WHAT??!!

The guys and Simba, waiting for a concert.

So I apologize profusely for this post. Please don't unsubscribe from me for this. Please.

Friday, December 7, 2012

On holiday junk food...

So Chris and I started this experiment that involves "testing" a whole bunch of unhealthy holiday treats and reviewing them. It was TOTALLY his idea and I really couldn't say no. I mean, come on, he came home with the biggest grin on his face and had arms full of holiday treats, for "experimental purposes," he said. How could I say no?

Not to mention the fact that I can't run for like a month due to tendonitis that just won't go away, so the calories I take in from this experiment, well, they have nowhere to go but my hips and ass. Yay. But.....this is all for the sake of love. And bloggery.

So here's my philosophy on junk food - I LOVE sweets. There is no doubt that I have got a horrific sweet tooth. As a tween/teen, I noshed on Little Debbie snack cakes for lunch, giant chocolate chip cookies that they served at my school cafeteria (they were pretty frickkin' amazing), and my parents and I would usually have a half gallon of Breyers in the freezer that we'd go through in, oh, 2 days. It was horrible.

So oddly enough, when I got to college I actually lost 15 pounds my freshman year, mainly because the food choices on campus were, um, sub-par. Plus I walked. A lot. And somewhere in the midst of all of this, I started to develop healthy eating habits. As an adult, I get giddy over health food stores, especially ones that serve tofu wraps and fresh sides like tabbouli and bean salads - YUM. When Chris is out of town and I'm a one-woman show, I could go nuts and eat at the restaurants Chris doesn't like. But instead, I cook roasted veggies and nosh on quinoa and kale.

I love the way healthy food makes me feel. I can't imagine going back to junk food. Even when we order pizza (a rarity), I always accompany my 2 slices with a giant kale salad.

So you can imagine how difficult this experiment is for me. My greatest fear is that I will go back there again. I'm afraid that the memories conjured up by this will make me go nuts, and should things get stressful enough over the next few weeks, I may go into the kitchen and have a snack cake binge. Especially since I work from home 2 days a hips and ass will double in size by 2013. Oh dear...

Here's how I typically handle sweets. I WILL allow myself to have dessert if we're out at a nice restaurant and they serve something I really love. Just because this is such a rarity, I think it's really good to do things like that. And each day, I typically allow myself one sweet treat (usually well under 200 calories). Because I've found that so often, one cookie is actually enough. Or even a spoonful of nutella. But it's usually a cookie that's made with very few ingredients, or if we do ice cream I get plan vanilla bean (the one with like 5 ingredients). Wow, I'm such a control freak. This is borderline nutty, right?

So now I'm relinquishing control to the snack cakes. Wish me luck.

Here's a link to our experiment.

 I'm dying to know your thoughts!

Also, here's a cute picture of owl kisses. This is me and Chris (d'awwwww):

Wishing everyone peace, love and sparkly things today!!