Wednesday, February 27, 2013

The lion, the lingerie, and Mr. Darcy

I'm home from work today with a headache.

That makes me sound really weak. It's not just a headache. It's a stress/tension thing that makes me borderline nauseous. My head aches. My shoulders. My back. Sometimes it shoots here and there. Everywhere. Blech.

So while I'm trying to feel like a human, there are other things I'm doing. For example, I signed up for my fourth half marathon, the California Classic on May 19th in Fresno. I'm excited. I even worked out a schedule increasing my mileage by no more than 10% per week, and it's totally do-able. Like, baby steps do-able. Label me super psyched. I would jump up and down, but my brain might revolt at that. Not good.

I also tried to read my book ("Pride and Prejudice" on my kindle); I say "try" because when I flipped the switch, nothing happened. I even tried resetting the thing. Nothin'. So I was bumming around Pinterest (definitely a habit I need to cut back), and found some "headache" related things.

...Or maybe they're not so headache-related. Some of them I get. But the lingerie picture? What does that have to do...? Oh, forget it.

The little devil on the guy's head pointing to the guy's eye? Oh yeah, that's me most of the time.

The guy with ice crystals (or whatever) coming out of his forehead? Me again.

The lion? Strange. The spiky hair? I get it. The woman with the disconnected arm and her head is cut into slices? Okay. I don't think I'll ever understand the lion or the lingerie. I'm certainly not feeling THAT today.

Maybe my kindle is charged by now...

Sunday, February 24, 2013

Four out of eleven: HORRIBLE!!

Well, that was just horrible. I ran a little less than two miles, per the Nike+ app (but I'm rounding up to at least two) before I started having cramps in my arches and Achilles, and had to go back home to change shoes.

See? I couldn't even made a decent "I feel like crap" face. I tried.

So I switched shoes and tried again. This time, I know the app was off by at least a half mile because I started and ended at two different places (in reality, both places were my front door).

So, my first time out today was "2.84" (ahem, I'm sticking with 3, and the second time was "0.93" (again, ahem, I'm going with 1.0). Total today was somewhere around 4.0, which is horrific when you consider what I had planned (and desperately need to do in order to prepare for the half) was 11 miles. Four out of eleven. Horrible.

Side note: I'm still looking for the running app that works best for me!! Nike+ ain't it.

Countin' it down!

Sunday, February 24th...cue the countdowns!

Eight working days left at my current job.
Four days until the birthday month.
Sixteen days until my birthday.
Twenty days until half marathon #3.

Time! I need time!
And I would really like a shiny new time on that half, preferably less than 2:22, if that's possible.

Saturday, February 23, 2013

Three things that make me happy

I am positively giddy.
So many reasons, really.

First and foremost, I start a new job in two weeks.

It's not that my current job is inherently a "bad" job, exactly; it's just that I was not built to be a debt collector. Nothing against the people who like working there, but it wasn't my thing.

Also, my current job is a twenty-minute commute, give or take; I always feel the need to leave my house before 6:15 even though my shift doesn't start until 7:00.

This new job requires me to commute a full 3.7 miles from my front door (unbearable, I know)!! Plus, no freeways. Which means no trucks. And less fog frustration.

Secondly, I think I've become re-addicted to reading. I've gone through a serious reading drought, but I think I've found something to reignite the passion.

Here's where I confess that even though I earned my bachelor's degree in English, I have never read "Pride and Prejudice." I've read "Emma," but nothing else written by Jane Austen.

I know. Time to retract that degree. I should be ashamed of myself. And trust me: for that, I am ashamed. But I'm making time to quickly remedy the situation. Then, and ONLY THEN will I watch the movies (oh yeah, I've never seen the movies either).

And one last thing.

We found a series to watch. Religiously. Multiple hour-long episodes at a time. Even on weeknights. "Dollhouse." Joss Whedon. It's good stuff.

Why my car?

I met up with a friend for a run at the park yesterday. The weather was great, the conversation was great, and the run was great. And then we returned to our parked cars to find mine blocked in by a cop car, and surrounded by three cops. There were plenty of open parking spots; hardly any other cars were there, just this big truck with a trailer selling bean burritos or something (okay, whatever).

As we approached my car, and I start to hyperventilate, one of the cops asked if this is my car. I said yes, why? What's wrong? He was all kinds of chill, and said he would move his car. He moved it into a parking spot right next to where they were standing. (Hello? Why not park there in the first place?)

It was a good three-and-a-half mile run, a change of pace and scenery, and it has made me look forward to my 11 miler tomorrow (next week is 12)!

Sunday, February 17, 2013

Identity Thief

We had a friend over earlier today, chatted while we munched on veggies and dips, then we went to see "Identity Thief," which we all loved. In fact, the audience was very vocal about their enjoyment. One woman even cackled and clapped numerous times.

In short, movie reviewers can be horrifically wrong.

I mean, it's not going to win any Oscars, but it was great. Finally: a movie where the previews didn't overshadow the movie! Even I laughed.

Very funny. Plus, I love both of the main actors; I've loved Melissa McCarthy since she was on Gilmore Girls, and Jason Bateman since Hogan Family.

But where did they find Amanda Peet, under a rock?

Seeing double...again

Tomorrow is my first scheduled double digit run in a very long time. It's getting serious now. March 17th is my third half marathon, and I'm planning to do a fourth in mid-May at the "California Classic." I'm trying to talk a friend or two into doing it with me, but I'm not sure they'll go for it.

I want to try to do a half marathon each and every month in 2013, even if it isn't a formal "race."

Color Me...starched

Yesterday was the Color Me Rad 5k in Bakersfield, and, per the over-eager instructions on the website and race director emails, we woke up at 6:00, and hit the road by 6:30.

We didn't get to the Kern County fairgrounds until 8:00 or so. As if we were hopping an international flight, we were directed to check in at least an hour or two before our 10:15 start wave. That was waaaaaay too excited.

They weren't even ready to check us in! They were barely breaking stuff out. Nobody knew which way was up. It's so frustrating that race directors have taken to freaking out newbies (the friends that we drove with).'s the "before," all white, clean, and ready to go get color-y. Even though we had already checked in and gotten our goody bag (which contained a t-shirt, a RAD tattoo, and you got to choose your sunglasses color), I hadn't yet seen the course, which made me nervous because it wasn't online either.

I'm not sure how or who took this picture...I'm fairly certain it wasn't me. This is basically what I breathed for probably at least an hour. No, wait. Definitely longer than that. The cornstarch started flying at 10:00; we didn't actually start running until 10:30 or 10:45, and didn't leave until 11:30 or so. Blech. It was like licking a pile of flour.

As far as the actual course...I was pissed! It was on very uneven pavement and dirt (which only made the run that much more dusty), and I brought the worst shoes possible for that kind of ground. Not only am I NOT used to it, but I was NOT expecting that, and I was wearing my minimalist road shoes with very little padding. NOT happy.

I definitely could've used more information. My feet hurt the entire rest of the day.

Y'know? At least I can say I did it. I've done a color run. It wasn't all it was cracked up to be; I wouldn't do it again; but I was there. Breathing the cornstarch made my chest and lungs ache, but I did it.

But overall, it was a fun experience.

And I'll never do it again.

Friday, February 15, 2013

Yesterday, today, and tomorrow

Yesterday we had dinner with C.
Today it was S&A.
Tomorrow, it's a 5k with D&J.

Friends, friends everywhere! I love it!

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Ag Show time! Yeehaw!

These are old pictures of where I live.

Tulare County, CA.

Farmin' country.
The pseudo-"trail" where I run every once in a while is a horse trail. Well, part of it is.

This week, though, is somethin' special to folks 'round these parts: it's Ag Show time. People take time off of work, spend lots of money to travel to this little town to see what's new in farming and agriculture.

The radio station I listen to might be kinda skewed (it's a country music station), but they play farming commercials almost exclusively this time of year. That, and the "Westside Ford in Firebaugh" guy.

Sunday, February 10, 2013


We started out yesterday (oops, I mean Friday) with no real outstanding plans. More of a rough sketch of what we wanted to do:
9:45 Leave house
10:15 Dentist appt
11:15 Meet up with friend for Home Show
1:00 Lunch
2:30 Home, to finish watching LOST (the entire series, finally)

It didn't exactly work out like that, though. My dentist appointment got out at about 11:00 (no cavities!), and the Home Show didn't start until noon, so we had more than 45 minutes to kill; plus, the friend couldn't make it to the Home Show yet.

We hit the road for Fresno, where we picked up our new glasses and had a yummy BBQ lunch. Then, we headed for the Home Show, and this time it was open and everyone was bustlin' around. Our friend still unable to join us, we started wandering anyway (which wound up being for the best, because our friend couldn't make it until after it was all over and done with).

We got some really yummy stuff: puffed popcorn without kernels and chocolate carmel apples.

We finished the night to the tune of the last episodes of "LOST"...finally, it's over. I was done a season and a half ago, but I have this obsessive need to finish stuff like that (not stuff like cleaning and organizing the closet; that's a different story altogether).

I know I'm extremely late to the game; still, I have some opinions and problems with that series. Did anyone else watch the entire series, or were we the only ones that wasted that much time in the COMPLETELY USELESS last two seasons?

Friday, February 8, 2013

Sleepin' like a baby: wake up cryin'every hour

The plan was to try out that interval thing yesterday before work. I was excited (even if I wasn't sure how I would remember the number of minutes walking, running, walking, running...).

But it wasn't meant to be. We got home from work, and I was STARVING, then INCREDIBLY TIRED! I had to go to bed. Like, right then. It was maybe 7:30 or 8:00. I didn't even play with my phone. Tired.

At some point, I woke up thinking that my alarm was going to go off and I had not had enough sleep by a long shot, so I stumbled out of bed and turned off my cell phone alarm. In doing so, I discovered that it was only 10:30 pm. It was going to be a very long night. And it was. I continued to wake up approximately six or seven more times throughout the night because I was too hot, needed water, or some other crackpot reason.

Thursday at work was the looooooongest ten and a half hours in recorded history. Like, seriously.

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

I am so doing this tomorrow morning!

While perusing Instagram, Facebook and Pinterest almost simultaneously, I came upon what appears to be a cool running plan to spice things up. So, here's what I'm going to try on my run tomorrow morning.

Speaking of early morning running...I think today has flown by mostly because of my run this morning. Once again, I'm sold. I hate waking up so early, but I love having energy and feeling like the hours fly.

Smelling the roses

That was really cool. Like, really really cool.

Yesterday as work ended and I walked to my car, I saw this most amazing sunset! I got a weird look from the security guard, but I had to take a picture, even if only to remind myself to take time to smell the roses.

Then I went home and (knowing that Tim wouldn't be home until late) I made a birthday card for our niece

So what do you think?

It was a semi-early-to-bed kind of night, in anticipation of running (or, in Tim's case, elliptical-ing) this morning.

I finally got to try out my Christmas hat with LED lights IN the hat. Very cool.

The actual run wasn't too shabby, either. I ran a lot, walked a little.

But overall, a great morning run that set me on my way for the day. February is going to be a great running month!

Saturday, February 2, 2013

Ice cream the power food!

It's an interesting thing, isn't it, the power of food to bring people together?

I have already written about the ice cream grub day this past Thursday; I didn't say anything about the details. The fun and funny details.

I work in a group comprised of...13 (maybe?) people. Naturally, not all of these people get along, so there were only six or seven people at the official afternoon ice cream break.

It started with me, B, and Jo, followed closely by G, and eventually L (who stayed on the couch and payed more attention to her cell phone than the rest of us), Ju, and P.

We chit-chatted for a while, and eventually the conversation turned to a section where G had once worked with a woman, R, who constantly wears way too much perfume (when she's in your proximity, you may as well have taken a couple hits of Binaca, no joke). I told G I heard a story about him and R, and wanted to hear it from the horse's mouth.

He told the story that he simply suggested she wear less perfume, since it gave him headaches and made him nauseous; she argued that he could just stay away, because she likes it. Good for G: he stood up for himself (even if he got nothing for it in the moment, eventually they separated the two).

It was a great fifteen-minute bonding session, and a great learning opportunity, where I learned that something as simple as ice cream can bring people together, make soft voices strong and unite a team unlike personality tests and group mini-meetings.

Friday, February 1, 2013

One thing after another after another...

Please tell me you've had those weeks. Weeks where you honestly consider whether you need to be institutionalized. You think and act and look flat-out nuts. Well, here...

If a cluttered front seat is any indication of a cluttered mind, then it all started Monday morning. I could not focus, and by around 10 that morning, I already thought it was Tuesday (really not a good thing).

On Tuesday, even my supervisor noticed: "you're just having a bad day today!" Yes, yes I am.

The creme de la creme was yesterday. It was MY big fat idea to bring ice cream to share with my co-workers. I bought a Costco pack, which has two half gallons of heavenly frozen creamy dreamy sugary vanilla, and told everyone to bring a topping.

So yesterday, I got up for work. My husband (who maybe knows me a little too well) had already put the ice cream scooper by my bag, ready to go. Score. I put the scooper and my bag on the front seat in my car. Got my three morning beverages in the car and headed out the door.

I drove twenty minutes and wasn't far from work when I realized I had forgotten the crucial piece in the Thursday grub day puzzle...the ice cream. Both tubs were still in the freezer.

The scooper reminder didn't work.
The bowls on my front seat didn't jog my memory.
Evvery. Single. Reminder.
Did. Not. Work.

Fortunately, I had time (because I leave my house around 45 minutes before I need to every day); I quickly turned around, got the ice cream, and zoomed back to work. I even got there with a full ten minutes to spare (told ya I leave early)!

That was when I noticed something missing from my front seat: my lunch bag.

Fan-freaking-tastic. I tried to convince my Love to bring me lunch; it turned out he was unavailable, but suggested I drive to McD's down the street. Ah: a fantastic (although unhealthy) suggestion I hadn't considered. Sold.

So, after my morning break and snack (of ice cream), I drove to McD's, where I saw a big beautiful sign: SHAMROCK SHAKES are back for a limited time.

Me: "I'll have McNuggets and a LARGE Shamrock Shake, please."
McD: "Uhhhm...we don't have those."
Me: "Oh. Well then MAYBE you should take this big sign down that says ya DO!"
McD: "So what can I getcha?"

Grumble, grumble. Ugh. So I got the nugget meal, and ate them at my desk. All grumpy-like.

Hopefully, that's the end of my bad week. It wasn't even that "bad;" it was more "kind of a bummer."

How was your week?