Thursday, December 27, 2007

The blur...

That pretty much sums up my life lately. One big blur.

Last week was absolutely insane. In addition to preparing for Christmas, I was working an insane amount of hours. Last week also included a quick, in and out trip to Las Vegas. It was all work and I was on the ground for approx. 26 hours. Of those 26 hours, I think I only slept for 4 hours. Friday was my last day in the office and I was hoping to get out early afternoon. I finally left around 6:30 p.m. and I think I was the last one left in the entire building!

Friday night we had two Christmas parties to go to. The first one was a friend of JP's. JP has had a few rough weeks at work too and was ready to unwind. I told him I would drive so he could enjoy the night. :) After the first party, we headed to his sister's house for a friends/family get together since we weren't all going to be together for Christmas. His brothers from Chicago get in around 1 a.m. and we didn't leave until I was pretty much falling asleep at 3 a.m.

Saturday we had a get togther with my high school friends. JP drove so I could enjoy the night, but since I've been so stressed out lately and really don't drink much anymore, two beers in I was feeling it. Sad, I know. I'm a cheap date.

During the rest of the weekend we finished getting ready for Christmas. Christmas Eve and Christmas Day was spent with both of our families and we put in plenty of miles driving between the two. It was a nice holiday and it was great to see family we don't see very often. Of course we all ate too much and spoiled each other crazy. I think our favorite gift (me, my brother and JP) was a quilt or blanket that my mom made for each of us. Every year we get a special gift from "Mrs. Clause" and every year she amazes me even more. She's such a super mom!

The last few days have been busy for me on the work front. I'm frantically trying to get things pulled together for an event shortly after the first of the year. We're way behind and I'm stressing out just thinking about it!!!!! And... we're leaving for Chicago tomorrow to spend some time with his family. JP's dad is coming into town and we're all meeting up there. I'm looking forward to it, but it kinda crept up on me.

For instance, I should be packing right now but I'm not. I hate packing. And, to make things even more overwhelming, I need to pack for two back-to-back trips. From Dec. 28-Jan. 3 I'll be in Chicago for vacation. On Jan. 3, I'm flying out of Chicago to head to Las Vegas for work. I'll finally be home on Jan. 9. That's a long time to be gone.

Anyway... I need to get back and start packing. We're shooting to hit the road between 9-10 a.m. and I'm hoping to get some sleep in tonight. Hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas and a safe and happy New Year!

Saturday, December 15, 2007

I LOVE the weekends

The end of the week got a bit hairy and I was pretty much living in the office. JP was also, so we were both exhausted by the time we got home last night.

Too tired to cook, we finally made it to dinner by 9:30 p.m. last night. We went to Bravo -- yum! Sadly, we were pretty tired and filling our stomachs only made it worse. After we finished our soup, we were pretty much down for the count. We opted not to go to the movies, and instead called it a night. Ah yes, the days of heading to the bar after work and not getting home until 2 a.m. are LONG past.

Today, I went to the gym and ran 3 miles at approx. 9 minute miles. I felt fine to do more, but honestly, I just wasn't feeling like running. So, I did some core work and got in some good stretching. I knew I should take advantage of having time to run, but I think the main reason for the slugishness was that I was running low on fuel. I ate before going to the gym, but not enough. Can you tell I'm not in "training" mode yet... :)

We have two Christmas gatherings tonight, but will only be able to make one. I hate not being able to do everything, but it gets so busy during the holidays. We may get a snowstorm tonight, too, so it should make for an interesting night.

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

5k, here I come

We all need goals. Big goals, little goals, it doesn't matter. I decided that I was going to do a 5k in February, so I've been getting back into shape and into running mode.

Monday, I went to the gym and ran 3 miles on the indoor track. It felt so good and I was in such a great mood after I left. JP even commented that he could tell I was running again. I wasn't stressed out from work when I got home and I wasn't nearly as tired as I normally am at the end of the day.

But... by the end of the night I was feeling the soreness creep into my legs.

Last night, I ran 3 miles again. It felt good to be out there, but my legs were heavy and it wasn't quite the blissful run it was the night before. Stretched out a ton!! And, man was I tired last night. I sat down on the couch after dinner and quickly got back up. I knew if I didn't, I'd be down for the count.

At least I know I can run 3 miles and will be able to get through the race. :)

Getting my hair cut tonight (finally!) so I may have to rely on my Women's Health 10 minute workouts DVD in my living room.

Work is crazy busy so I better get back!

Friday, December 07, 2007

NY Times running article

Something I'm sure lots of runners have been doing for a long time, but the article is still interesting:

http://www.nytimes.com/2007/12/06/health/nutrition/06Best.html?em&ex=1197176400&en=ca0897ba66f87fcf&ei=5087%0A

Sometimes, my disassociation method is to write my blog entry in my head about the great run I just went on... :)

This week's excuses

Here are my many reasons for not getting back to the gym this week, as I thought I would...

Tuesday's excuse
It was day 2 back in the office and I was so freaking tired. I went home, ate dinner and was in bed and asleep by 9:30 p.m. I didn't even stay up to watchc the VS fashion show on TV... :) I don't think JP noticed though, as his "wife" Adriana Lima apparently opened the show. Scantily clad, beautiful women... yeah, I'm sure it's easy to forget about your girlfriend! :)

Wednesday's excuse
We had dinner with one of my old college roommates and her boyfriend. My friend moved to the same town about a year ago and we get together occassionally. We definitely need to get together more often, and we had a great time! Our boyfriends are very similar and get along great (which is always very helpful), so hopefully we'll see more of each other.

Thursday's excuse
I had a dentist appointment (one tiny cavity and my wisdom teeth are coming in and I need to have them removed -- yuck!). It was a new dentist for me, and I LOVE him! A co-worker referred him to me and he's a great guy. He even gives his patients his home number so if you have a dental emergency at 1 a.m., you can call him. My appointment wasn't until 7 p.m., and JP worked late last night. We ended up heading home around the same time and meet up at Olive Garden for dinner. I hate when we're the couple that eats out/gets take-out in the middle of the week. My mom is a total Betty Crocker and we always had homemade dinners at 6 p.m. everynight. Whenever I'm super tired and I end up making JP hot dogs or something, I cry to him that I feel like I'm going to be the bad mom with obese children! Guess I can't help that we both work long hours and sometimes that's just the way it goes. I try to plan our dinners so we can have healthy, homecooked meals everynight, but I need to work on it!

Friday's excuse
To early to tell....

TGIF!!!! Hope everyone has a great day and kick-off to the weekend!

Monday, December 03, 2007

I'm pooped!

Well, I knew I'd be tired and I am. Actually, I was exhausted by 11 a.m. But... the good thing is I'm healthy enough to be back and everyone was so nice. Lots of hugs, smiles and well-wishes today.

It only took me about 4 hours to get through my 300+ emails. Most were irrelevant by now, but you still have to read them to stay in the loop. I feel so out of it and really have no idea what's going on around here. I'm sure it'll be back to normal in no time, and I actually enjoyed the quiet day of email, mail, voicemail, etc.


As I said, no gym tonight but I'm still planning on getting there tomorrow night! I'm anxious to get back into the training mode -- even if it's for a 5k race. I love being in shape and the dedication of training. Plus, I noticed the other night how non-muscular my legs are becoming. Come on, those running legs are my trademark! :) (Plus, we have a wedding in the Florida Keys in April and I will look smokin' hot in my bikini! If that's not incentive, I don't know what is!)

Sunday, December 02, 2007

Doesn't anyone want to interview me?

Yes, sometimes celebrities have things appear in print that they would like to keep private, or things that really shouldn't interest others (like getting coffee, fueling your vehicle, etc.). Why aren't they interested in things that normal people incounter? For instance, Mary-Kate Olsen reportedly was in the hospital last week for ... wait for it... a kidney infection. I scrolled though the entire article, but no where did they mention that I was in the hospital for a kidney infection as well. Hey, maybe it's the newest trend... I'm a Hollywood trend setter! :)

Here's the article: http://tv.msn.com/tv/hotgossip/11-29-07_4

Anyway, today was a belated Thanksgiving for my family. Since my parents went to my brother's in Kansas for Thanksgiving and I was sick anyway and we didn't go to JP's family for dinner, we thought we'd declare today our Thanksgiving. Thankfully the roads weren't too bad from the storm we got last night. My mom made a feast and invited family and friends to celebrate. She had quite a houseful (there were 12 of us!), and we had a good time.

My parents were so thankful that JP took such good care of me while they were out of town (sick daughter on one hand, son they never see and hasn't been with family for Thanksgiving for a couple of years on the other other hand -- tough decision), my mom thought the least she could do was cook for him.

Back to work tomorrow. It'll be a little weird since I haven't been there for 2 weeks, but I'm sure it'll feel like I never left... Since I'm sure I'm going to be beat after work tomorrow, I'm not planning on hitting the gym, but I'm planning on getting back there on Tuesday. I have a 5k on my schedule for February, so I better get myself into some sort of physical readiness.

Hope eveyone has a happy Monday!

Saturday, December 01, 2007

Go! Fire Up Chips!

Go! Fire Up Chips! Today my alma mater -- Central Michigan University -- won its second MAC championship! I was hoping to go to the game (they were playing on Ford Field in downtown Detroit), but with the whole hospital visit thing, I didn't get a chance to buy tickets.


When I was there, our football team wasn't very good. Over the years, we've gotten better and better, which always makes Homecoming more fun... I was there in spirit though, wearing my school sweatshirt today. :)

Today, I braved the mall to get my mom a belated birthday present. In addition to getting some great stuff from The Body Shop for her (I LOVE that place! Plus, it's enviornmentally freindly.), I scored some sweet jeans from The Limeted for $15. Yes, $15!!!! I almost bought two pairs. They fit perfectly and I even found a "short" size.

And... I picked up two more Christmas gifts. That makes my count thus far to four gifts. It's only December 1. Sadly, I admit that I've been one of those crazys running around on Christmas Eve day still trying to find that "perfect gift." Yay me. :)

Well, better get going. JP is on his way over and I have a fun dinner planned. We're under a winter strom advisory, so we're planning on camping out inside tonight. I made a bunch of picnic foods -- french bread, an assortment of yummy cheeses, meatballs (for him), grapes, rasberries and melted chocolate, etc. Unfortunately, no wine since I'm still on antibiotics, but I thought it would be fun and something a little different.

Thursday, November 29, 2007

Humor me...

I'm bored at home, nothing on TV and I'm tired of word find puzzles. Humor me and take a look at this... too funny!


Hey, I just made a total elf of myself. Check it out by clicking the link: http://www.elfyourself.com/?id=9632604287

This elfin' greeting brought to you by OfficeMax®.

Sick? Mom's always make it better


Yesterday my mom called and asked if I wanted some company. I was so happy to have here visit me and... help me with my laundry. Okay, I'm not proud. I'll have my (willing) mom help me with my laundry, even though I'm a grown woman. Isn't that what mom's are for?

Feeling better and stronger every day, but I decided not to go back to work until Monday. I want to be 100% before I join the rat race again. I've even decided to not look at email until then. I'm sure my inbox is exploding, but I'm not worrying about it.

Earlier today, I had a nice little ego boost. I ran to Target to return something and looked like crap. I hadn't showered, my hair was in pigtails and not a single bit of make-up. I basically don't care what I look like when I run errands. However, when I was checking out, the clerk commented on how pretty I was. Hmm... if she was lying that's okay, I'll take it. ;)

Well, more laundry to do yet so I better get to it.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

"Pretty wimpy"? My ass!

I had my follow up appointment with my PCP today. It was pretty much a waste of my time. They took my temp (normal!), blood pressure and he pounded on my back a little bit. Yes, that is the technical way to check kidneys. He asked which antibiotic they put me on. When I told him amoxicillian, he said, "oh, you had a pretty wimpy bacteria then." Hmm. Didn't seem to wimpy to me, as it promptly knocked me on my ass for a week. They don't want to do any tests until after I'm done with the antibiotic, so I have to go back in a couple of weeks.

These things gross me out, but at the same time intrigues me. Here's a picture of what E. Coli looks like under a microscope. YUCK!!!


Monday, November 26, 2007

My latest adventure

And, no, I'm not talking about my LA adventure. I worked my ass off and was happy to get home around 1 a.m. on Thursday. I was so happy to finally sleep in my own bed and was looking forward to a relaxing weekend.

Thursday afternoon, JP and I went to run a couple of errands. Whle we were out, I started feeling, "weird." About 35 minutes later, I was sick in bed with a high fever and feeling like a truck hit me. Ugh. The flu. Why didn't I remember to take my Airborne before getting on the plane.

I had all the classic signs of the flu -- body aches, high fever, chills, can't keep anything down, etc. By Sunday afternoon, JP was really worried and wanted to take me to urgent care. I kept telling him that it's just the flu and it just needs to run its course. Plus, his sister who is a doctor did say there was a flu going around. (Later learned that it was her idea to get me to urgent care since I wasn't getting any better several days later.)

By this time, I hadn't eaten in a few days, I coulnd't even keep water or juice down, and my fever was still really high. Sunday night, I finally asked JP to take me to the ER. If they could just give me a shot or something to get rid of this horrible, horrible flu.

Yeah. Not the flu. I learned that I had a serious bacterial infection and needed to be admitted to the hospital. Are you kidding me!?!?! A few hours (? -- I have had no sense of time over the last week or so) later, JP and I were headed to the hospital, where a bed was waiting for me. It ended up that I scored a nice corner suite -- literally. It was a nice, big private room and they allowed JP to stay with me.

It ended up that I had a strain of E. Coli. It usually starts with a UTI, then it moves to the bladder, the kidney and then the liver. It wasn't anything I ate or drank, and they only said that women are more prone to kidney infection because of anatomy and all the stuff that goes on down there. I was much sicker than I realized at the time. Kidney infection is very serious, but if it had gone on without being treated, it would have moved to my liver, which would then allow the bacteria to get into my blood stream. If that happens, it is very serious and it can be fatal. (Note to self: always listen to JP when he wants to take you to the ER)

When I got into the hospital, they put me on an antibiotic. It helped, but I was still pretty out of it. The test takes time to identify the bacteria and then test which antibiotic it is most senstive to. Once they identified that exact strain of E Coli and gave me the exact antibiotic, I started to perk up.

However, with my luck, that couldn't be all. I was finally starting to feel better and something happened with my IV. Somehow it was no longer going into my vein and was now going into the tissue. All of a sudden I noticed that my hand was twice the normal size. It took 1 1/2 days for it to go back down to normal. So, they had to poke and prod me again in the other hand to start a new IV line. Ugh. I HATE needles and this nurse wasn't the best at it...

Wednesday, I was finally ready to try solid foods. Oatmeal for breakfast. Check. All I wanted for lunch was corn flakes. Those were the best damn corn flakes I have ever eaten in my life! Since I was able to hold down food, I had the option of being released that night or wait until Thanksgiving. I opted to go home.

I don't remember much, but one thing I do know is how amazing JP was while I was sick. He only left my side to get food, grab a shower and get some clean clothes from home. He totally took care of me and I really realized how much he means to me and is a huge part of my life.

Still not 100% and I'm taking a few days off before heading back to work. Everyday I get a bit stronger and I'm looking forward to getting back to myself!!

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Random thoughts from LA

Have a little down time right now. Since I've been in LA:

1. Had a $60 cab ride to my hotel. Apparently this is normal.

2. I saw a taping of CSI: NY. Look out for a future episode with (I'm guessing) a body in a dumpster. Didn't recognize the actors, but hey, I saw an episode being filmed.

3. Almost got into an accident. Caddy vs. Suburban. I was merely a passenger, but it was my driver's fault.

4. I love how eco-friendly (most) everything is in LA. Resturants are all organic, recycled materials are the norm, etc. (Okay, minus the above mentioned Caddy and Suburban.)

5. I had the opportunity to sit outside for a few minutes of fresh air. It's high 70's, sunny and beautiful. I love it and, to my surprise, could totally see myself living here.

6. Starbucks has the holiday-themed drinks and cups, but it's so strange to me. How can you possible think of Christmas (= snow in my mind) when there are palm trees everywhere?

Well, better get back to work... it's only 2:15 p.m. here...

Monday, November 12, 2007

Food with a Face

Made it safely to LA... We took off about 2 hours late, but at least I was able to sleep on the plane for a bit.

This is random, but kinda funny. Saturday night JP and I picked up Jamaican food for dinner -- we were having dinner with a friend and her mother, who are also from Haiti. This little place is not in the best area of Detroit. I've only been there one other time, but it scares me to go. It isn't the worst place, more of a place were most people would be uncomfortable. However, it scares me. Any place that has bars on the windows is a place where I don't want to be. I said that I knew I was being a snob, but I was okay with it in this case. Give me the west side burbs anyday!

The first time we went, JP parked in front, on the street, so I stayed in (his freaking BMW) while he ran inside to get the food. Right. I thought for sure someone was going to steal me!

Anyway... this place has some unusual items on the menu. Ox tail, goat, etc...

I'm not a true vegetarian. I forget the name that describes me, but I eat seafood and eat/drink dairy. (FYI: chicken and turkey are M-E-A-T). That said, I ordered fish for dinner. Now, the first time I ordered, it was normal fish. Like anyone would get from a resturant. Yeah. Not this time.

I am now totally on board with the vegetarians that won't eat anything with a face. Literally. I opened up my food and there was a, well, fish. Head, tail, everything. I was a little freaked out, but was trying not to let it show because of our friend's mother. I didn't want her to think I was a baby. (It's bad enough she doesn't speak much English and I can't speak any French.)

Everyone was laughing, and JP took my food and cut the head off. He brought it back to the table, but it still had the tail on it. I didn't know how to get the actual food off and must have been looking at it strangely. Finally, our friend's mother came around to my side of the table, and proceeded to cut my food for me. I felt like I was five years old. She was laughing, but I still felt dumb. But... come on. Can you blame me? My food was staring at me!

I love seafood too much, so I don't think this will turn me into a, "no food with a face" diet.

Sunday, November 11, 2007

Sunday Night: Sitting in the airport

Hard to believe it's Sunday night already. The weekend went by way to fast!

Friday night, I worked longer than expected. JP landed right at 5 p.m. (he now claims the only way to fly is corporate jet). We were scrambling a little bit to get to the Palace for the 8 p.m. tip-off. In fact, we were a little late. The game was a total blow out, but it was still fun. We went with one of my college roommates and her boyfriend. Unfortunately, on the way home, I got pulled over about 1/4 mile from my house. Apparently I was going 45 mph through "town" where it is posted at 30 mph. I was so tired and the cop was kinda a jerk. He told me he didn't know why I was in such a hurry. I'm thinking, well it's 12:30 a.m., I've worked a ton this week and I'm ready to go to bed. He gave me a ticket for 5 mph over but I won't get points on my record. Okay. As if my city (the richest county in the state) need my money... grrr... not a good way to end the night.

Yesterday, I finally went to the gym! It had been so long!!!! It felt good to get all my frustrations from the week out. It also made me really miss working out and hopefully I'll make more of an effort to get there more often. There were these little, annoying high school girls in the room where they have classes. Apparently, they were practicing their dance line or something. First of all, put some clothes on. Second of all, you're not Brittany Spears. You're dancing at a football game. No need for the pouty lips and sexy dancing. Seriously. Not having a daughter! :)

Right now, I'm sitting at the airport waiting for my hour-delayed plane. I'm heading to LA tonight. I'll be there for the LA Auto Show, and will get back Thursday morning. I thought about heading to the bar for a drink, but I think I'd fall asleep and miss my flight. Instead, opted for a coffee. One thing I'll enjoy for sure is the warm weather. It's getting too cold in Michigan and I'm not ready for the cold. :)

Keep your fingers crossed this plane gets here soon so I can get on my way.

Friday, November 09, 2007

Falling in love all over again

Picking up where I last left off...

I finally left the office on Wednesday night at 8 p.m. Tired and praying that I had hot water, an hour long commute later I was home. Thankfully, JP removed the battery from my smoke detector so the incessant beeping had stopped and I had hot water. What more can a girl ask for?

The next morning, however, no hot water. Ugh. Treked over to JP's to get ready for work. Good thing we live so close to each other.

While that sounds horrible, it was still the best morning ever. Why? Because I fell in love with JP all over again. No, really. You see, I'm super anal about a clean bathroom. Since I've been so busy lately, I haven't had a chance to clean it this week and it was really, really bothering me. Before I went to bed, I thought about cleaning at least the sink but I was too tired and didn't have the energy to even reach for the sponge, let alone clean with it. When I got up in the morning I walked into the bathroom and ... it was clean!!! JP came over to check on everything after I went to bed and he cleaned my bathroom for me! Is he the best boyfriend ever or what.

Last night I left the office around 7 p.m. after a very hectic day. I had a really late lunch (3 p.m.) so I wasn't too hungry for dinner. We both needed to eat, but nothing sounded good. And... we didn't want to leave the house. JP finally decided he would cook some ramen noodles (hi, are we in college again) so we'd at least have something in our belly. (Again, best boyfriend ever. I'm too tired so he volunteers to make food.) He went to boil water and ... the gas stove top wouldn't light. Apparently the pilot light went out, but we couldn't find it and we were both, frankly, not that interested in working to hard in looking for it. Ended up getting some Middle Eastern take-out (mmm... hummus...) and calling it a night.

We couldn't help but laugh. Between the two of us we have an apartment... I don't have hot water and he doesn't have a functioning stove. Geez.

I AM getting out of here at a reasonable time tonight because we have tickets to the Piston's game tonight. Yay! Well, better get back to work so I can get out of here. Hope everyone has a great weekend!!

Wednesday, November 07, 2007

I have to ask... seriously?

Someone told me today that it's the "belly-button day of the week." Funny. Always thought it was considered "hump day." Anway...

It's 7:17 p.m.

I got to work at 8 a.m.

I'm not done yet.

JP ran over to my house to check something for me and found
1) my smoke alarm is in fact beeping -- I couldn't remove the battery last night so the beeping drove me absolutely insane (and I forgot to call the office to have maintenance change it for me... of course...)
2) I don't have any hot water. Apparently a neighbor told him there hasn't been hot water all day (which brings me to why the hell aren't you at work like, well, me.)

While I'm toiling away (you know, in between blogging), JP is at a Red Wings game. He told me he wouldn't go, but I'm not the kind of girl that gets upset about this type of thing. Go! Have fun! Why should you wait at home while I'm at the office.

Anyway, I need to finish up and get the f*^# out of here... out.

Tuesday, November 06, 2007

Did you see me on TV?

I have lots to share, but I'm so tired and really could do without being on the computer.

We had a good weekend. Everyone's response at work on Monday was, "it was such a good sports weekend." We had the Michigan/Michigan State game, Detroit Lions blew Denver out of the water, and the Piston's won their home opener.

Saturday, we spent a majority of the day at my parents so JP could help them with their computer. We watched part of the Michigan/Michigan State game, then hurried up so we could watch the rest at home. It was a long day, but we still went out to our friend's bar for a drink that night. We just needed to get out of the house. JP had to celebrate his school winning the cross-state rivalery game.

Sunday, we watched part of the Lion's game and then got ready for the Piston's game. We had THE MOST AMAZING TICKETS EVER!!!! Did you see me on TV? Because our seats were 4th room on the floor, about 5 seats right of center court. I have never been that close!!!! I was so excited and loved every minute of it. I was so close, I could hear what they were saying on the court, could see everything and sometimes the ref was in my way!!!! :) JP took so great pictures, but they're on his camera. We won by 1 point, so it was a great game to have those kickass seats!!!!!!

Back to reality now, and this week is going to be a hectic one. Heck, I just sent my last email of the day and it's almost 10 p.m. I'm flying out to LA for the auto show on Sunday, so there's a lot to get done between now and then. At least it'll be warmer there -- it's threatening snow here in the "D"... :)

Friday, November 02, 2007

Today's Horoscope

I don't usually check my horoscope, and don't really believe it in. Just more like a fun time-waster. Anyway, I'm still at work on a Friday afternoon/evening so I thought I'd check it out. (I know it's only 5-ish, but I've been trying to leave for about 4 hours now...) Ironically enough, here's mine for today:

Aquarius
November 2, 2007
Junk mail and a few telephone solicitations would almost be a welcome relief from the intense communications you've been having with people lately. All this intensity is interesting, to be sure, but also more time-consuming than you'd like. You barely have time to handle your own affairs, much less those of others. If you begin to feel yourself at the bursting point, call your own personal time-out. A mineral bath would do you a world of good, dear Aquarius.

So true!

Should be a good weekend. Dinner with friends, visit to my parent's, Michigan/Michigan State game (Go Blue!) and suite tickets for the Piston's game. Hoping to get some good workouts in there as well.

Happy Friday to all and have a great weekend!

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Happy Halloween!

Last night, JP had his first experience of carving pumpkins. We had tons of fun and, as you can see by the pictures below, his first try was pretty impressive. Obviously, he has far more artistic ability than I do... (mine is on the left -- as if I needed to note that... ).

Here are a few moments we captured. Actually, throughout the entire process he kept saying, "why aren't you taking my picture?" Such a little kid! In the end, I'm glad we documented the first pumpkin carving night.

Hope everyone one with little ones enjoys tonight -- be safe and have fun!





Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Drinking for the kids

It's 11:30 p.m. I'm still working. Didn't get my workout in today. Enough said.

Last night, I didn't workout either but for a good reason. I was drinking for the kids, and on a weekday to boot. A girlfriend of mine was a guest bartender at a local bar to raise funds for a children's charity. I hadn't been to this bar in a long time, and I haven't been out on a weeknight to drink in an even longer time. It was a ton of fun! The morning alarm came early, but it was well worth it. After all, I was doing it for the kids! :)

Gotta get back to work...

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Pumpkin Patch Fun

I really want to post pictures from the costume party JP and I went to this past weekend, but they need to be "pre-approved" by him. It was an 80's theme and I convinced JP to be Michael Jackson -- he looked so good! :)

Anyway, on Sunday afternoon it was a beautiful day and we went to a nearby apple orchard. After eating donuts and drinking cider (YUM!), we went to pick out our pumpkins. You see, my dear boyfriend has never carved pumpkins for Halloween. Granted, he didn't grow up here so they didn't have this time-honored tradition. I made it my mission to give him the opportunity to experience scooping goop out of a big pumpkin, making a mess, roasting the seeds and watching your scary face droop after being outside for 2 days. Great memories.

He was so excited, and picked out a 22-pound pumpkin. He wanted his own, so I picked out a smaller one for myself. I'm sure the actual carving will garner some great stories... Until then, here's a look at our pumpking-picking experience.




Thursday, October 18, 2007

Greatest workout DVD!

Real quick while I'm eating my lunch (busy, busy day)...

I've been frustrated lately because I haven't been able to get my workouts in. Morning is out because I'm not a morning person and it would be cutting it close getting to work even if I'm at the gym by 5:30 a.m. when it opens. I've been working late and by the time I'm on my way home, it's at least 7 p.m. so I'm hungry and my oatmeal I usually eat before my workout just won't cut it. By the time I get home, eat, let it digest a bit it's about 9-9:30 p.m. And, the gym closes at 10 p.m. Since it's so dark so early, I can't do a later run either.

The solution - I read about this workout DVD -- Women's Health: Total Workout in Ten! -- in my Women's Health magazine. Finally broke down and bought it (only $12 at Best buy). It features four 10-minute sessions that focus on: cardio, arms, legs, stability/core control. Tuesday night was a crazy night (pretty much exactly like the description above), so I gave the DVD a try.
Since I had time, I did all of the session, plus the bonus stability ball workout as well. I was sweating my butt off!!! Since each session is only 10 minutes, the "trainer to the stars" who runs the workout makes sure you get your bang for the buck. My legs and butt were sore when I woke up the next morning and my abs slowly started to feel the burn throughout the day. It was a great workout, and I'm glad to have an alternative that I can do at a time that works for me.
I'm a little burnt out on running, so this is a great way for me to mix up my workouts a little bit. Hopefully this will help me get through the cold winter months, when going to the gym just doesn't sound that great. And, then I'll be all ready to pound the pavement in the spring. :)

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

When I grow up...

I wish I could report my vacation from a sunny beach with a warm breeze and a cold drink. However. I'm in Michigan. Where the weather is turning cold and it rained this afternoon. Oh well. I'm still on vacation!

Unfortunately, I was wide awake at 7:30 a.m. I struggled to stay asleep, but then my mind started racing. Work. Again. Instead of fighting it, I made a pot of coffee, turned on the Today Show and opened up my laptop for a few hours. I know vacations aren't supposed to involve working, but I didn't mind it so much since I was in my PJ's, the Today Show was on and I was sipping coffee.

It was an uneventfuly day, but I got so much done. I did laundry, finished some things I've been wanting to do since I moved into my apartment 6 months ago, got my hair cut, cleaned, worked out. You know, caught up on life.

This is a much needed vacation, but after 2 days I'm still stressed. Perhaps because I haven't totally disconnected, but usually I can relax faster than this time around. I've been having a difficult time lately with work. I am good at what I do, and I've always enjoyed my line of work. But lately, I've been wondering "what I want to do when I grow up." I chalked it up to needing a vacation (which could still be it...), but lately I've caught myself wondering what I would be doing if I could make any changes in the world. Would I stay with my job? Would I stay in Michigan? If I left my job, what do I want to do? I've come to realize that whenever I start getting this way, a change is in the works. Part of me really hates change, but another part of me thrives on it. Weird combo, I know.

Anyway, we'll see what happens and if what I really needed was some time away from the office. Tomorrow is our annual mother/daughter bonding day. Every October, we go shopping in Frankenmuth (If you live in Michigan, this little German town is something everyone goes to at least once in their life) one day in the middle of the week. Here's a little picture -- cheesy, I know, but they have cute little shops, an awesome bakery and a wine cellar that sells a New York wine that I love and can't find anywhere.


The weather is usually still nice and since it's mid-week it isn't crowded. Oh, and of course what would a trip to Frankenmuth be without stopping at the world's largest Christmas store. I faintly remember the first time my parents took my brother and me to Bronner's. We thought for sure we were right at Santa's house! Since we were young, my mom gives us an ornament every year for Christmas. If you're going to find a unique or special ornament, this is the place to shop.


There's also an outlet mall nearby, so we head over there to do some damage as well. We've done it every year since I've been out of college and in the working world. My mom really is my best friend, and it's something we both look forward to every year!


Tuesday, October 09, 2007

To those that ran Chicago:

To those that ran Chicago, I hope you're safe and recovering quickly. To my friend, Jason, congrats on getting to mile 22 before having to walk the last 4.2 miles. And to the family of the Michigan police officer, my condolences to you and your family.

On non-Chicago, but marathon-related props. Congrats to my friend Linds for her BQ this weekend in a Pa. race!

************************************************************
The golf outing went fine. I was really nervous, but ended up having a really good time. The weather was BEAUTIFUL, the beer was cold and the team was loads of fun. Although... 18-holes is a lot of ground to cover. I wasn't good, but I definitely improved as the day went on, so what more could you ask for, right? Admittedly, there were a few times being out there was extremely painful and I would be happy anywhere but there at the time. I'm hoping to get out on a couple of 9-holes yet before it gets too cold. If not, at least get to the driving range a few more times.

**********************************************************
Day 1 of vacation today -- kinda. I had an 8 a.m. conference call and I'm sitting in on one right now. It's just a really busy time, and I didn't feel comfortable getting too far out of the loop. Between calls, I went out for a nice approx. 5 mile run. It was so nice, mid-morning run in the nice, cool, crisp air. I could totally do the work from home thing! :)

Hope all is well and everyone is enjoy the beautiful fall weather!

Friday, October 05, 2007

Sheer Dread

I don't want to do it. I really don't want to do it. Today is the, now dreaded, golf outing. I know it's all in good fun, but I really just don't want to do it. First of all, this woman who already intimidates me is on my team. Secondly, I heard she's really good and is really competitive. I've never played a full 18-holes before. What the hell was I thinking!?!?!!?! I'm trying to figure out a way to get out of this. Should I call in sick... to golf? But then I'd screw my team for being a player short. Well, actually, it may help them. It's not just that I'm not good, it's that I really don't think this is even going to be fun. I mean seriously, there's not good and then there's me. My team is made up of seasoned golfers. I just took lessons this spring and have only gone to the driving range a few times since. What do I do!?!?!!? Think I can come down with the 24-hour flu right now?

Wednesday, October 03, 2007

What a day...

Brief recap of my day:

1. 5 a.m. - alarm goes off so I can attempt to go to the gym
2. 5:00:30 a.m. - promptly hit snooze... some how end up turning it off in my sleep
3. Begin dreaming about work
4. Wake up late
5. Get stuck in major traffic
6. Badge doesn't work in the parking garage
7. 9 a.m. - finally get into the office
8. 8 p.m. - finally leave the office
9. Decide not to go to the gym, kick myself all the way home for not going to the gym, stomach growling like crazy
10. 9 p.m. - finally get home
11. 9:45 p.m. - eating tofu for dinner while thinking about the mint chocolate chip ice cream in the freezer

Tomorrow I'm looking forward to meeting up with a friend for dinner after work. My gym bag is still in the car, so I'm fully intending to hit the gym afterwards. You know, after a healthy dinner and, perhaps, a healthy glass of wine.

Oh, and Friday I'm looking forward to making a complete fool of myself. I allowed myself to get talked into participating in a work golf outing. At first, I allowed myself to think, "This is why I learned to golf. It will be fun and a good networking opportunity." I'm on a team with people that I don't know well, and I'm not sure if that is a good think or a bad thing. Now I'm thinking, "What was I thinking? I'm going to make a complete jack ass out of myself. It's not going to be fun, it's going to be a painful, embarassing afternoon for me. What was I thinking!?!?!"

Anyway... looking forward to another great day. Just living the dream. :)

Friday, September 28, 2007

Glad to be home

I think I've recovered from the trip. I took today off and slept most of the day. All in all, it was good and I'm looking forward to go into the next one with a broader knowledge base. My plan was to go for a nice easy run, just to stretch out a bit and get some fresh air. Yeah. That plan didn't really go into effect. It's 5 p.m. and I'm still in my PJ's. :)

JP and I have reservations for dinner tonight. He's been stressed out, I've been stressed out, and we have a gift card to use up. So, tonight we are having a nice dinner out (and I don't have to cook!) :)

Tomorrow we're heading up to my college Homecoming! It's nice to be back on campus, catch up with old friends and show JP a part of my past. Last year it was really cold, so I think we'll both enjoy this year much better. Fire Up Chips!!!

Thursday, September 27, 2007

Howdy from Texas


I'm in Texas. It's f-ing hot and muggy. Working long hours. I'm still up working and need to be back up in a few hours. It's a new job and I feel like I don't know what I'm doing. I don't think the Starbucks in my hotel will be open at 5 a.m. I'm tired. JP's sick and I can't be home with him. Tomorrow is going to be a long ass day and I won't land until late. And, I have a bad feeling my flight is going to be delayd. (Yup. NWA.. how'd you guess.)

Okay, that's all the negative thoughts out. Really, this is a good learning experience and since it's my first show, I'm obviously not going to know how things work. I knew going into it there would be some long hours, but it's been awhile since I've had to travel for work and forgot how late the night can go. Well, I'd better be off to bed so I can function tomorrow. No working out on this trip. Usually I'm pretty good about it (especially if I'm training) but I didn't even bring my gear this time. Ugh. Can't wait to get home and back to a more normal schedule. Good night.

Monday, September 24, 2007

Update!

I've been waiting to post so I could throw up some pictures, but I just keep delaying it longer and longer. Anyway, here's a quick (personal pictureless) update on me.

Last weekend, JP and I went up to Petosky, MI for a friend's wedding. It was really cold, but the wedding was beautiful and our friends were the happiest couple in the world. We spent two nights there and then went over to Traverse City so I could show JP some of my childhood vacation spots. We climbed the Sleeping Bear Sand Dunes, about 3 miles round trip, and played on the beach of Lake Michigan. It wasn't exactly what JP was expecting (climbing mountains of sand for 3 hours), but we had a really good time. I'll add our pictures soon. Seriously, see how little all those people look! It's quite a hike, but I think well worth it. Oh yeah, wondering how JP's ankle held up? Well, he decided this was the weekend he was taking himself off of the walking cast. I was nervous, but he did fine and it didn't hurt... anymore than usual. :) During our 3 hour hike, we had plenty of time to talk. We both thought when we first started dating that we were going to be the adventure couple -- running, soccer, cycling, etc. since we were both big into those types of things. We haven't really become that, but we both want to. So, we rededicated our relationship to be the fun, adventurous type. Can you just decided that? We'll see. :)

I've been running and actually decided to join a relay team for the Detroit Marathon. I was super excited and thought this would be really good for me. But... the girl pulling together the team didn't realize registration had closed for relay teams. She proposed we all run the half together, but I haven't been training and I know I wouldn't be happy to do it "just for fun." Come on, running races isn't for fun! :) Anyway, still working out on my own, but I realized I need to pick at least a 5k to work towards.




This weekend was low-key but nice. We went to a really great resturant with some friends on Saturday night. It's an old mansion turned Japanese and French resturant. What a combo, huh? I've been wanting to try it out for a few years, but I never think of it when we are trying to find a place for dinner. Excelent atmosphere, pretty good sushi and fun with friends. That was really the highlight, but I don't mind after a few crazy busy weekends.


Heading to Dallas tomorrow night for work.... here I come Texas State Fair! :)

Monday, September 10, 2007

Day 1

I did it. I went to the gym after work. Yay me. :)

Did 30 minutes on the elliptical, ran for a little bit to stretch out my legs, and lifted. I didn't get home until around 8 p.m., and JP waited for me to eat dinner. I've decided that I really need to just get up in the morning and get my workout done and over with. Not ideal for me, but that way we can eat dinner before 9 p.m.

So, we'll see how day 2 goes. Good night!

"Miss Out-of-control bachlorette"

That was what the the nice sash my girlfriend from college was wearing this weekend at her bachlorette party. Good times had by all.

We met at the maid of honor's condo in downtown Detroit. I've always admired these beautiful and trendy condo's, but never knew anyone that (dared) to leave there. It's right near the baseball stadium, so not a bad part of town, but no one really lives in downtown Detroit yet. Anyway, games and drinks flowed freely before we hoped our shuttle bus that was ours for the night. We headed over to an awesome Cuban resturant. There were about 20 of us, all decked out, so we attracted plenty of attention as we walked in. The food was great, I had my first Mojitos ever and there were authentic dancers halfway through our meal.


We headed over to the bar, where we had VIP access. We ended up hanging out with a bachlor party and our groups kinda merged together. I haven't been out dancing for a long time! Since I had to drive home, I ended up only having one drink at the bar. Still had a good time, but liquid courage always makes things just a little better... :) A few of my friends, with longer commutes home, headed out around 1 a.m. and caught a cab back to our cars. I hadn't been drinking that much, but on the way home all I kept doing was burping up those darn Mojitos. It was so gross and I felt like I had been drinking all night. Got home, took off all the glowering jewelry, male-anatomy straws and other incriminating materials, showered and crawled into bed. I was so hungry, but I was trying to wait for JP to return from his night at the bar so he could go get food for both of us. I fall asleep in about 2.6 seconds on a regular basis, so why I thought this night was any different is beyond me. Fell asleep with my tummy rumbling for food. Tonight was not a night to close the bar and stay up until 4 a.m. eating greasy post-bar food. :)

We spent the day with my parents yesterday and some family friends from out of town. Had a nice time, but I was so tired!

Heading to the gym tonight! I'm getting back on track. Hope everyone had a great weekend and a good week to come.

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

Fog Delay

Not that we have work fog delays, but today was the exception. The fog was so thick this morning, I couldn't see the flowers on my balcony. I made the executive decision to wait it out a little before getting on the road. I'll probably get to the office the same time as I would if I left the normal time.

The holiday weekend was great. We went to the Detroit Jazz Festival, and the Arts, Beats and Eats festival. In other words, lots of good music and lots of really good food! The weather was so nice, our main goal was just to be outside as much as possible.

The weekend (and into this week) also included running. It's nice to be out on the roads again, but it's not as much fun to, "go for a nice easy run," when you're not in that great of shape. Remeber when banging out a 12-miler was an easy run? I've been trying to mix things up a bit by going to the track, running bleachers, etc. I really want to start lifting again, but I can't bring myself to go inside the gym when our nice days are becoming limited.

Work has been getting busy, hence my sporatic blogging and my non-existent visits to your blogs... I promise I'll get back into it soon! Hope everyone had a fun and safe holiday weekend and that this week goes well!

Monday, August 27, 2007

Buckets of Beer!

Great weekend!

Friday night, we met up with one of JP's college friends. She wanted to meet me and JP wanted to meet her boyfriend. We had a great dinner and since the evening was going well, we decided to take in a movie. We saw Super Bad. OMG - It was SO freaking funny! It wasn't one that I would ever choose to see, but it was much funnier than I thought it would be. I wasn't a fan of Arrested Development, but after the performance of ... forget his name... I wish I would have watched it. He is such a great young actor, and he played his part so well.

Saturday night was the long awaited German Park. I've been going every summer for the last few years, and this weekend was the last one of the summer. It's basically a bunch of picnic tables out in a field with BUCKETS OF (German) BEER, German food and polka music. It doesn't get much better than that. :) We had a ton of friends there and we played cards and some sort of dice game. I don't know... I was drinking my bucket of beer. My truck looked like we'd gone off-roading though. With all of the rain we've been getting, the parking area was a muddy mess.

Yesterday, I thought about going for a run and decided not to do it. JP and I went up to a nearby outlet mall and went shopping. We walked forever, so I'd like to think of it as an easy workout. :) Hitting the gym tonight though. I have to get back into it.

So, here is is Monday morning and I have a ton to do. Better get back to work. More later about my great workout that I'm going to have tonight.

Thursday, August 23, 2007

Master of the Wii

You know you've been dating for a while when you stay up all night... playing video games. (what were you thinking?) JP bought me a new game for my Wii and we were up until 1 a.m. playing it. There are about 10 different games on the disk and, of course, we had to try them all. They're just short little games and I basically got my butt kicked. I think my record was 4-11. I love the Wii and it's nice that there's actually a video game system we can play together.

I've been trying to get some runs in this week, but I've been in a lot of pain. Ugh. When I don't feel like running, I feel fine. When I want to go running, I hurt. Ironic isn't it.

Well, better get back to work!

Monday, August 20, 2007

Sick Day

Ugg. I'm home sick. This morning when the alarm went off, my body was not cooperating with me. At first, I thought I was just tired (like every Monday morning) and hit snooze. My body was sore and my legs felt "weird" and I knew that I wasn't going to make it into the office. Around 7:30 a.m., I called in and went back to bed. Fast forward to 1:45 p.m., when I finally woke up and got out of bed.

Now, since I'm like most of the world, even though I'm not feeling well and my head feels like it's going to explode, I dragged out my laptop and jumped online. Why do we do this? I'm all about new technology, but when did it become acceptable to constantly email, check voicemail, call into meetings when we're on vacation or sick? Anyway, that's another post all togeher. I did a few emails, but my client yelled at me and told me I better not be on our 2:30 p.m. call. I've already looked ahead to tomorrow and it's going to be a monster of a day!

Quick recap on the weekend. Saturday, JP went to Cedar Point and I enjoyed the day to myself. I went running and did a ball workout, went shopping, cleaned, read a magazine and just relaxed. Sunday was pretty low-key. JP and I went grocery shopping and made dinner for his family. I don't get freaked out like I used to, cooking for a party of seven. I'm getting better and everyone seemed to enjoy it. I may not freak out, but I still get nervous as everyone is taking the first bit. It's especially challenging since I don't eat meat, so I can't taste test the food before serving. :) It's always a good ego boost when people request seconds.

Well, my head is about to explode so I better turn off the computer to get some rest. Hope everyone had a wonderful weekend!

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Why I love my job

10:24 a.m.
Grab a latte at the coffee shop downstairs (great office building -- everything from Starbucks to a dry cleaner to a Hallmark to clothing stores to the post office)

10:37 a.m.
Run into Borders and buy a stack of magazines

10:52 a.m.
Return upstairs, settle in and start reading.

Yep, part of my job entails that I'm familiar with a wide variety of media outlets. No, this isn't what I do all day everyday, but it's a part that I enjoy. My profession isn't brain surgery, but I just want to stress that it isn't a cake walk either. Now, I better get back to it. :)

Saturday, August 11, 2007

Perfect Saturday Night

I went for a nice, easy run this evening. I know, shocking isn't it! About 20 minutes into it, I started to feel it a little bit. About 30 mintues into it, I really noticed how not in shape I am. Ended up going for about 50 mintues, and actually enjoyed it. With no pressure, I think running will become enjoyable again. I even went as crazy as thinking that I should do a couple of 5k races this summer yet. I know come fall I'm really going to wish I would've trained for a marathon but there's always next year.

JP's out with the boys tonight and I thought about making it a girls night at the bar but decided against it. Sitting at home watching TV and drinking a glass of wine just sounded good to me. Not a wild and crazy Saturday night, but it sure sounded perfect... :)

Friday, August 10, 2007

TGIF!

I received a phone call from my doctor's office this morning. Apparently the crazy shrink and my pain doctor had their weekly meeting and my case was on the agenda. The crazy doctor recommended to the pain doctor that he thinks I should continue treatment with him since, "I seem to have a lot of stress in my life." Who doesn't? No thanks. I think I'll try something else that does not involve someone telling my the source of my chronic pain is that I'm a perfectionist.

TGIF! Can't wait for the weekend to begin in a couple of hours. Should be low-key. Although, my family reunion is on Sunday, so JP will get a chnace to meet a bunch of the extended family. Should prove to be entertaining. Hope everyone has a great weekend.

Thursday, August 09, 2007

Here I Am!

Well, after a brief stint of being MIA I thought I'd better do a quick entry to say that I'm alive. (And no, David, I haven't left you all behind to become a card carrying memeber of the BPC!) I've recently been assigned two new accounts at work, which is like learning two new jobs at the same time, which has been the main culprit. I'm so mentally exhausted after work, logging on the computer at home is about the last thing I want to do.

Also, I think I've been avoiding facing the fact that I'm not training for Detroit. It's hard to face it, but now just isn't the right time. Partly, I think I'm a little burnt out with running. The thought of running for four hours (really, even 2 hours sounds absolutely horrible to me right now) just doesn't do it for me and if you're going to run that long you should enjoy it. (Right, Mendy!?!) The other part, as you all know, physically I think it's too taxing on my body right now. I managed to do it last year, but I think I really pushed it and I need to let my body take its time to heal.

There. I've said it. I'm not training. I still feel a little bit like a failure, but as JP kindly reminded me, running does soley definine me.

Anyway, need to get back to work and I promise I'll be better about posting. Here's a quick picture of our one year anniversary date. JP suprised me and we did a beautiful, sunset dinner cruise on the Detroit River. Thanks to everyone for being there for me! Missed you all, too.




Sunday, July 15, 2007

The Beautiful People Club

Last night I partied with a "beautiful people" club. It was one of JP's friend's birthday and so we went to the bar to celebrate with her. I hadn't met these friends yet, so I was looking forward to it. I tease JP that he's a part of the "beautiful people" club. Most of his friends are very attractive and what I would consider out of my league. (At least they're the nice beautiful people instead of the snobby beautiful people.) As we're approaching the bar, he slides in that I'm going to think these are the BPC. Great. Now I'm a little nervous. I'm a pretty confident person, but I never want to be the couple that people look at and think, "Really? He's with her?" We had a great time and it was the perfect summer night to be at a patio bar. Everyone was so nice, I met some really great people and fit in well.



Well, the birthday girl had a bit too much to drink and needed someone to drive her home. Since she doesn't live too far away from us, we volunteered. I was going to drive her car and JP was going to follow behind. We went to valet to get our cars and hers pulled up first. Yeah... it was a $100,000+ BWM. So, not only was I with the "beautiful people" group, I was with the "rich, beautiful people group." JP's BWM pulled up behind and, as much as he loves his car, he was SO jealous that I was driving this one! His friend and I gabbed the whole way home and she's such a sweet girl. We're traded phone numbers and we planned on setting up a driving range date sometime soon. Not sure how drunk she was, or if she'll remember, but nonetheless, I drove a $100,000 car. It was a good night. :)

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Getting ready to go to the thing most women dread throughout their adult lives -- a wedding shower. Now, don't get me wrong, I love my dear college friend, but no matter how much you adore the bride-to-be, showers suck. I'm going to guess this, "Garden Party" won't have those stupid games, but keep your fingers crossed. Nothing like ooohing and aahhing about what a great set of bowls she registered for...

Friday, July 13, 2007

My commute home


Since I've been on this assignment with weird hours, I don't check the traffic report before I leave - no rush hour traffic at 2:30 p.m. Apparently I should check it. Yesterday afternoon, around noon, a water main pipe broke and flooded one of the major expressways. Nearly 4 feet of water! Of course, it was the expressway that I take home. Traffic was re-routed and it took about 1 1/2 hours to go 30 miles. Thankfully no one was hurt!

Thursday, July 12, 2007

Complete Waste of Time

Let me start this blog entry by saying that I am in full support of those that need a psychologist and the psychologists that are able to help them. That said, the psych eval that I went to yesterday was A COMPLETE WASTE OF TIME.

When I arrived, I was taken into a small room with a desk to take a questionnaire. A 576-true/false questionnaire. Going in with an open mind, I tried to over look that this was going to take me forever. Some of the questions I could completely see being a part of the evaluation. Questions related to alcohol use, if I've considered harming myself, etc. Some of the CRAZY questions include, "I think someone is trying to take control of my mind", "I see people or animals that no one else can see", "I have a fear of dirt." Yes. Those were really on the form. (I started thinking though. If I really did see people that weren't there, would I actually admit it on a true or false scantron?)

Then my psychologist came in the room. I thought he would be friendly, try to build a repoire with me, etc. Nope. He came in with a legal pad and started with a constant stream of questions. He asked the typical questions - relationship with family, friends, boyfriend; how I liked high school and college; how I like work; etc.

He got to the question of when the pain started. I replied it started 2 years ago. He asked if I've had any medical problems within the two years. Okay. Did you not read my file. Yes, I had my freaking abdomen sliced open. He asked for a few details, and I said that I had went to the ER in the middle of the night and had to have surgery that day. Now, I'm no expert but if there was something in my past that could be causing me stress couldn't it be the fact that I had a pretty tramatic heath issue? Apparently not because he barely flinched and went back to asking me questions about my relationship with my parents. Were their expectations to high? I guess it's more likely that I'm in pain because my parents were mean to me when I was 6-years-old instead of having a major surgery.


In what I thought was the middle of our conversation, he suggested I go to a few sessions with someone, "because it can help to talk to someone about life and what's on my mind." Yeah. I'm thinking no.

After pressing him for more details (like why he thinks this is the course to go), he said that he can usually tell right away what is bothering someone but couldn't with me. Hmmm, maybe because it isn't in my head. He basicaly said that he thinks it is good to be driven, but that I may be a perfectionist and putting too much stress on myself. Of course I'm driven, I call that being successful. I have a good job, I'm good at what I do, I have a strong support system and I work hard to be physically pit. Of course, marathon runners are their own kind that non-runners don't always understand, but that doesn't mean that I'm a perfectionist.

I have another doctor's appointment (like a real medical doctor) next week, so we'll see how that goes.

On a more normal note, I ran between 4-5 miles yesterday afternoon. The weather is actually the perfect temp and it was nice to be outside. Today I ended up working out with a trainer at the gym. I barely lasted 30 mintues before I thought I was going to pass out. I'm so not in shape yet. Gotta keep working to get back into it. Oh wait, is that me trying to be a perfectionist and reach unrealistic goals...? :)

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Runners Legs

Yesterday after work all I wanted to do was go home and take a nap. BUT, I took my butt to the gym instead. When I walked in, one of the trainers called me over. His client was a no-show and since he was getting paid anyway, he said he may as well kick my butt for an hour instead of sit around. Sweet! He's a pretty good trainer and has been trying to recruit me since my previous trainer left. Unfortunately, when I came back out his client showed up. Bummer!

I thought I'd try out the bike since I've been toying with the idea of doing a tri for about two years now. Holy cow! My legs are not cycling legs! After 20 minutes on the spinning bike, I couldn't go on. I was sweating like mad and, had someone been next me, I definitely would have been the smelly girl on the bike! I'll tell you, in just 20 minutes my butt hurt. Those little seats are really not comfortable at all. If/when I start tri's, my first purchase is going to be one of those gel seats!



Trying to mix things up a bit to keep me interested in workout out, I decided to hit the Precor machine. (After trying to walk to it normally. I can totally see how that is a dificult transition.) Usually a "manual mode" girl (hmm... that doesn't sound right...), I opted for the programed glut workout. It was a good workout and I swear my butt's a little smaller already. :)

I decided to suck it up and go to my appointment today. Still a little reluctant to go and I'm not sure what to expect at all, but I'm sure it'll be interesting.

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

"The Zone"

Yesterday, I headed to the gym expecting to do some light cardio since I haven't been working out at all lately. Nothing fancy, just a little one-on-one time with the eliptical. Now, "The Zone" is something runners love and I haven't experienced in quite some time. Apparently, my body realized I was finally working out out again and thought it better slip into this phase and enjoy it while it could. Who knows when I'll work out again, right? :)

Since it was nearly 100* outside, plus all the stinking Michigan humidity, the air conditioned gym was packed. I jumped onto the eliptical and started my workout. I was really getting into it and was surprised when I had already chugged out 3 miles. Now, I know running 3 miles and getting 3 miles in on the elipitcal are completely different but, the fact is, I went 3 miles. Whoo Hoo. And, since I was feeling good (except for the smelly man next to me. We all sweat and stink, but this was extreme. Yuck!) I decided to see what I could do on the track.

Mile 1 - about 8:30 pace. Hmmm... not bad. Haven't done that in awhile. My mind starts to wander and I begin to think about everything that's been going on with my health. You see, at my last appointment at the pain clinic the doctor gave me two more options (the 3rd is surgery, but I refuse to do it). The first option is a psych evaluation to see if it's a "mind over matter" thing. I told him if this is all in my head, I'm fine with that. Let's just find out it is, and figure out how to get over it. If it's not, then we can cross off the list that I'm crazy. I'm suppose to go this week for my eval, but I'm having second thoughts. I'm not afraid to do it, nor am I ashamed of it but, I truly think it is something physically wrong with me. I understand that I can believe I'm in pain when there isn't really anything wrong, but I can't make myself swell, bleed, etc. Those are all physical things, not mental issues. (The second option was a drug that was accidentally discovered to treat chronic pelvic pain. If you're a little uneasy about the acidental finding get this, it hasn't been through enough clinical trials for ANY statistical data behind it. Right.... like I'm going to jump for that option.)

Mile 2 - about 8:15 pace. Hmmm... this isn't bad. Plus, I'm deep in thought by now. I start thinking about my great support system - friends, family, fellow bloggers. I especially thought about Tori's latest post and how determined she is after all the health issues she went though. I think about Mendy and David and what a great family they are and how encouraging they both have been to me -- a complete stranger.

Mile 3 - about 7:00 pace. By this time I'm completely in the zone, more determined than ever to run and I've got some kick butt music playing on my iPod. It felt so good to open up, stretch my legs and just ... go.

Still in this great mindframe, I thought I'd better milk it for all it's worth and hit some weights. I hadn't lifted in quite some time either and it felt good. I was making myself strong, little by little. After I was done lifting and stretching, I felt so accomplished. I was hurting (you can only block out knives stabbing and burning through your abdomen for so long), but I was so happy with myself that I seemed to bear it a little better.

So, to everyone that was with me during my run yesterday (there are LOTS of you)... thanks. I couldn't have done it without you.

Monday, July 09, 2007

Five whole days of fabulous vacation! It was so wonderful and I was so sad when the alarm went off at 5 a.m. today. I just wasn't ready to go back to work. Here's a quick look at my time off:

Days at the Pool: 1
I spent my first day off sitting by the pool for the day. Of couse, I had to call JP at work and tell him that I was enjoying the sunshine. This was the first time I've hit the pool at the new place and it was nice and empty. All the suckers were at work... :)

Movies Watched: 3
1. Tuesday night we went to see Transformers, which is a fun summer movie. Plus, iti s filled with the products that I work with everyday, so that was pretty cool. We've been talking about this movie for so long, it was nice to see it on the big screen... finally.

2. Friday night we saw Ocean's Thirteen. Not the best of the three - possibly tying with the 2nd one or just slightly better. This is a good rental movie, but I wouldn't recommend going to the theater to see it.

3. Last night we saw Die Hard. Completely unrealistic (even for a Die Hard movie, which is saying a lot) but again, a fun summer movie.

Veggie Burgers Consumed: 2
We went to a picnic at JP's sister's house for a BBQ. Pretty low-key, except for a rousing round of Sorry and Monopoly.

The next day, we went to my parent's house for a belated birthday dinner for JP. Complete with cake, ice cream and presents. I'm so glad that my parents and JP get along so well!

Baby Polar Bears Sighted: 3
On Saturday, we spent the day at the Toledo Zoo. We went with some friends who have a 3-year-old, so it was kinda fun seeing everything through a child's eyes again. The Toledo Zoo is a wonderful zoo (I've actually never been to the Detroit Zoo...) and the newest attactraction is the polar bear exhibit. There are three baby bears and they are SO cute. And, to feed into my panda bear obsession even more, JP got me a little stuffed one at the gift store. Instead of saying I'm spoiled, I prefer to say that I'm loved. :)

Miles Run: 0
Yes, I'm a complete slacker and the ambition of running a marathon this fall is slowly slipping away. Having some semi-serious medical issues right now (I need to call the doctor again today) and running isn't high on the priority list. I know I could still run if I wanted to by altering my training a bit, so that makes me feel a little better. I'm pretty sure I could bounce into it relatively quickly. I'm pretty torn right now about running and just not sure where I stand. My plan is to at least workout while I'm figuring things out, so at least I'm in some sort of decent shape.

Anyway, it's a hot one out there today (Yes, David, I should enjoy this warm weather before I'm shoveling snow that's up to my waist!). It's back to the real world, so I better get back to work. Happy Monday!

Monday, July 02, 2007

Is it Monday already?

The weekends just go to fast. It was a beautiful, sunny weekend and, like most, it wasn't long enough.

Friday, JP and I had an exciting night at Costco. I bought my tires there (GREAT deal!) and had to go back to see what the heck happened to mine. As they were working on it, we walked around and bought some things we didn't really need, but were such a great deal we couldn't pass it up. Really, we're not one of those couples that load several carts because you think buying in bulk is cheaper. But... when it's a good deal we take advantage of it. Oh, and what was wrong with the tire. Absolutely nothing. Really. I had these special caps on my tire stem that turn yellow when the tire pressure gets low. Apparently it randomly decided to break and it let all the air out of my tire. I was relieved I didn't have to drop a bunch of money on a stupid tire. JP just felt stupid for not catching it.

Saturday, I didn't do my long run (more on that later). Instead, I enjoyed the luxury of sleeping in and going out to breakfast. After running errands and "life" stuff, JP went to the bar with his buddies to celebrate his birthday. I declined an invite to go out with some friends, and went to bed instead. Ah yes, more sleep! At least for awhile...
I was in bed in a deep slumber, when my lovely boyfriend came home from the bar and decided to come visit. He wasn't drunk, which makes this even funnier. At 4:30 AM he comes in and wakes me up. And... like a little kid, he wants to open his birthday presents. Since it is, technically, his birthday I give in. I got out of bed, went into the closet where I had hidden his gifts and give him one of them. Thinking I'd be in the clear until morning, I soon learn that this only sparked the fire. Oh no. Now he wants to open all of his presents. So, at 5 a.m., he opens his birthday presents. I told him that if we ever have children it will be HIM that gets up with the kids on Christmas morning. :)

A few hours later, I took JP to a surprise brunch. I was SO excited to take him and not telling him where we were going about killed me. I'm not very good about keeping secrets. I made reservations at The Whitney -- on of the nicest places in Detroit. It's an old mansion that they turned into a resturant, and it's right downtown Detroit. It's one of those places that if ou live in the area, you have to go to at least once. We got dressed up and headed downtown. When we turned down the road it is on, he looked at me with a VERY surprised look on his face and said, "We're going to The Whitney!"

Brunch was amazing. Really though, how can a four course brunch not be amazing? It was the most I've ever paid for brunch, but I was okay with it since it was a special occassion. Afterwards, we walked around the mansion to explore and took some pictures. Absolutely beautiful.
Last night, we finished his big day with a big dinner with his family. We stuffed ourselves silly! More presents and finally I fall into bed exhausted around midnight. Thank goodness it's shutdown (auto companies always shut down for 2 weeks in the summer) so none of my clients were in the office today. Jeans and an early afternoon... sweet! Okay... time for a nap. Maybe the gym later...
P.S. If you're catching onto this... my marathon training isn't going so well... Not in the mood to talk about it now. Maybe later...

Friday, June 29, 2007

Date Night -- Five Stars

Although it got off to a rough start, last night's date night was great.
Around 1:30 p.m., JP called me at work to say he had just woken up. He wasn't planning on going into the office, but it ended up he was sick after returning home late on Wednesday night. I was concerned that he was sick, but I'll admit I was more disappointed that we may not get to see Ratatouille.

After work, I went right to his place and he was feeling a bit better. After idle chit chat, I finally busted out with, "If you're not feeling well... should we call your brother to see if he wants the tickets for tonight?" It was in that half hopeful/half disappointed voice. I tried to be neutral, but I couldn't help it. He smiled and said that we would go.

Shortly afterwards, I went home to change out of my work clothes. No running tonight - I'll take it as my rest day. (As if my training schedule hasn't been jacked up to begin with...) After changing, I jumped back into my car to drive back to his house.

Thump.
Thump, thump.

"What the hell is that?"

I looked out my window and saw that my back tire was COMPLETELY FLAT. I'm talking so flat it looked like a half circle. How did that happen? Literally 15 minutes prior it was fine. And... don't the flat tire gods know that it's date night!?!?!
I started to get the jack out when JP came over to help change the tired and stop me from having a breakdown. When things go wrong with my truck I get very touchy. I love my truck and hate when there's something wrong with her. (Note: I do refer to my truck as, "her", but am not the type to actually name it.)





(This is her, but mine is white. My motto is that my truck is, "cute and sporty, just like me.)

We quickly took off the tire and found... absolutely nothing. We couldn't find any holes, rips, tears, nothing. Since it happened so quickly, I thought for sure we'd find a huge slash in it. Nope. Nothing. This made it worse. Stupid tire.

We quickly finished and were on our way. We were cutting it close and I was starting to think we weren't going to make it to the theater in time. Not to mention that we weren't going to get dinner beforehand now and we were both starving. It was in one of those fancy theaters in a very upscale area, where I haven't done "the scene" in awhile. It was nice to be there and see so many people walking around. Anyway, we made it in time and it was such a great movie!!!! It was super cute, funny and had those classic Disney/Pixar believe in yourself-you can do anything you put your mind to-family and friends stick together underlying themes. I highly recommend it to anyone, regardless if you have small children or not. Definitely 5 stars from me!
(Come on, how can you not love these little guys.)

We went over to our favorite Thai place nearby, but it was closed by the time we got there. By this time we had been seeing food that looked so real we could practically smell it for 1 1/2 hrs, so anything sounded good. We settled for Mongolian BBQ. Yum!

Tonight is my 3 miles I skipped yesterday and then to take my tire in to see what's wrong with it. I'm so not excited. Then... my first long run on Saturday and then JP's birthday is Sunday. Should be a great weekend.

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

The "D"


We're like a real city. Yes, it will take a little bit of time yet, but Detroit is coming along. And I've seen proof of it all week. Last week the Detroit River Days festival began. Along the riverwalk, outside of the RenCen where my office is located, a transformed city came to life. The new carousel is open, a small carnival was set up, food vendors, basketball hoops (complete with Coach K from Duke making an appearance), GM Racing team members and their cars, THREE music stages, etc., etc., etc. It is quite a sight. Sadly, it ends tonight with the famous Target Fireworks (hopefully it doesn't rain...) Anyway, the proof of its success? People are coming downtown. Every day when I leave work, there are people walking around. Really. Families, young, old, all races... and not just the people that work downtown. People are making an effort to come downtown. It's such a great sight to see.

I have special passes to the fireworks tonight, which I must admit I've never been to before. Part of me hopes it doesn't rain because I really want to go. Part of me hopes it does because it's going to be such a late night that I'd rather be dead tired on a Friday than on a Thursday. I hate getting up so freaking early!

Last night I skipped golf and went to the gym instead. I wasn't feeling well, it was nearly 100* outside and I just didn't feel like chasing a little ball around the grass all night. Oh well. Anway, I did my sheduled 3 miles and then some, ending up with 4 miles at 9:30 pace. I also FINALLY hit the weights and focused on arms. A little sore this morning, but not too bad. It was rough getting through, but I was bound and determined to get my miles in.


I don't typically watch much TV, but last night I turned it on and flipped through the channels. On ABC, "Shaq's Big Challenge" reality show caught my eye and I was pleasantly surprised. It was actually really good. Six overweight children (I'm talking 50% body fat! An 11-year-old that weighs nearly twice as much as I do!) that are going through a lifesaving change. I'm hooked! This will be my guility pleasure this summer.

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Real Mail

Yesterday, I went to my mailbox expecting half of the items inside to be junk and hoped the other half wouldn't be bills. I had an envelope with my name handwritten on it, which always intrigues me. Plus, I always get a little excited about "real" mail. Remember how big mail was in college? (My mom was so good at it, sending a letter every other week of so. I never got those big care packages though...) Anyway, guess what was inside? I won a contest (which I had actually forgotten I'd entered)!!!

The daily newspaper always does these little online promotions and I always enter. I figure
someone has to win. Right? Well, it was my turn to win. I won two advance screening tickets to Ratatouille and a gift card to a nice resturant. I'm SO excited. (Not to mention the resturant has a killer dessert I've been craving lately. It's called "tuxedo cake." Think Hostess Ho Ho, only a trillion times better. )

Now, I know I'm an adult, but I love those Pixar movies. And, Ratatouille is one I've been looking forward to seeing. Granted, I'd probably wait until it came out on video, but hey, I get to see it before it actually comes out. Thursday night is going to be date night. :)
*****************************************************
Doctor appointment went okay. More later. Not really ready to talk about yet. I always get a little moody after an appointment, no matter the outcome. I did go the gym. Didn't workout, but I went to the gym. I drove to there, sat in the parking lot and then drove home. Just couldn't muster up the energy or strength to go inside.

Monday, June 25, 2007

Hot construction chic

One of JP's brothers is an architect working on the renovation of the mall near us. He invited us to go through and see what he's been doing and a chance to get a sneak peak at the new mall. A hard hat and safety goggles... should I change professions or what!?! (Ha! I usually wear stilettos everyday to the office...)


Long run update -- No comment

Yep, it was that good. I was in a lot of pain this weekend and didn't do my long run on Saturday. I attempted to do it on Sunday, but that didn't happen either...

I have an appointment at the pain clinic this afternoon, so we'll see what he says.

Friday, June 22, 2007

Week 1 - Almost complete

The first week of training is coming to a close. The one big thing still looming ahead is the weekend "long run." Yeah. The long run. I'm scheduled to do a 10-miler. We'll see about that. I'm not sure I'm quite ready for that. I could do it, but I don't want to hurt myself just to prove I can do it. May bump it down to an 8-miler.

Day 3 - Wednesday
Scheduled to do a 5-miler and I was really excited about it. I was in pain all day, so I thought instead of doing a 5-mile loop, I'd run to the nearby high school and do laps. Sounds boring, I know, but at least this way I wasn't too far away from home if I couldn't make it through. I ran the 1 mile-ish to the track, did 3 miles on the track and ran home. It was actually kinda fun being on the track (I miss those high school days) and the time passed quickly. Not sure of my exact splits, but it was a 9:50-10:00 pace. Not super speedy, but I'm not worried about that.

I didn't make it to the gym to lift though... I was drenched in sweat and was pretty tapped out. I know lifting is such a vital part of training, but I just haven't been able to muster both the runs and the lifting. Stupid stomach.

Day 4 - Thursday
Stupid stomach continues. I was in so much pain last night I couldn't do the scheduled 3 mile run. I kept telling myself it's only 3 miles and that I could suck it up and do it. The sensible side then kicked in and told me that if I couldn't sit up without falling back in pain, I didn't think I'd be able to bend over and tie my shoes, let alone run. I figured I would take that as my "rest day" and do the 3 miles tonight instead.*

I have a doctor's appointment at the pain clinic on Monday. My prescription is up and since I don't have any refills, I need to go in and discuss where we are and where we're going. I think I'm going to go in and tell him the meds are working (I can function on a daily basis now, for the most part), but that the current situation is still unexceptable to me. He's going to nod, tell me that these things take time and again go through the list of options. Surgery is still a no! I've been doing some research on my own and there are some questions I have for him. Just thinking about the appointment is making me upset, so I'm gonna leave it at that.

(* Sound overly optimistic and upbeat? Sound nothing like me when I can't get my workout in? You would be right. I was pissed, but what are you gonna do? Good attitude. Repeat: good attitude...)

Anyway, looking forward to the weekend and relaxing a bit. JP's been out of town all week and gets back tonight. Yea!

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

And so the training begins

First thing is first. Monday, I started training for the TBD marathon. We'll see about this. I still have some reservations. Not because I don't think I can do it. I know I can physically run a marathon, after all, this will be my fourth. What I'm not so sure about is if I'm going to enjoy it. I know I'm going to get upset if/when I miss a workout because of my stomach and I know I'm not going to enjoy a run if there are knives stabbing me in the abdomen for the entire 18 miles. After thinking about it some more, I decided I would regret not trying. And so, the training begins.

Day 1 - Monday
Nice and easy 3 miles (9:40 pace), and some crunches and push ups on the bosu ball. It was technically to be a cross-training day, but I have golf on Tuesday and don't always make it to workout afterwards since we get done a little late. It was freaking hot and humid, but it was a pretty good run. My abdomen hurt a little bit, but not nearly as bad as the weekend (more on that later.)

Day 2 - Tuesday
Cross-training. After 2 hours of golf (we learned how to get out of the sand trap. I was pretty good at it, which is a good thing since I'm sure I'll be there a lot more than on the green.) I did a full body workout on the yoga ball. It wasn't overly strenouous, but strength training and balance is a necessity.

Day 3 - Later today
I'm scheduled for 5 miles. My plan is to start lifting again today, so hopefully that will be what actually happens. :)

This past weekend we went to Chicago to visit JP's brother. They live right downtown, so we walked A LOT. We walked Michigan Ave., went up into Sears Tower and checked out some great resturants. Unfortunately, I was hurting very badly the whole weekend and was doubled over in pain Saturday night. Needless to say, I did not partake in the Chicago nightlife. We have some cool pictures, but they're still on my camera so I'll have to upload them later.

It's a beautiful day out and not as hot as it has been. I'm ready to get out of here so I'll write more about the run and our weekend in Chicago later.

Friday, June 15, 2007

Floating on a Cloud

I was in a lot of pain yesterday, so no working out or golfing. Instead, I took a pain pill and went to bed. (Missed watching the Spurs SWEEP the Cavs last night.) The additional meds make me really groggy, so I'm still a little bit cloudy this morning.


Monday I start formally training for my marathon. I have to accept that I will probably miss some workouts but that I am doing this FOR FUN, so it's okay to miss some runs. I am not training for the Olympics, I am not a professional runner. I run because I enjoy it. (Okay, who am I kidding? I'm gonna be upset if I don't go sub-4:00 hrs.)

Thursday, June 14, 2007

Happy Birthday, Mrs. J

Yesterday would have been JP's mom's birthday. She passed away when he was only 14 from ovarian cancer. To celebrate, we went to the cemetery with her favorite flowers and to clean the headstone. JP is the youngest, and was very close to his mom. We go to visit pretty regularly and he always makes sure the headstone is clean and the grass around it is trimmed. It's so hard for me, not because I knew her, but because it hurts him so badly. I cannot imagine what it would be like to lose a mother at such a vital time in ones life. So, happy birthday Mrs. J. I wish I could know you, but I love your son and I promise to take care of him for you.

Afterwards, JP had a soccer game nearby. We had planned ahead and during his game I was going to run around the area. Lots of hills and grass/trails, so it was a different type of run. I can feel it in my core how uneven the ground was! It wasn't the "great workout" I was planning on having. I've been in a lot of pain this week and it stopped me short a few times during the run. Urgh. Did I say I was training for a marathon? :)

Anyway... a good workout tonight and hopefully hit the driving range.