Friday, February 27, 2009

Signs I Should Have Stayed in Bed

Yesterday should not have happened. It was not a bad day, just a complete waste of oxygen.

Here are a few signs I should have paid attention to:

1. Woke up to find that my cat peed on my running clothes
2. My right eye was swollen shut
3. The computer I use at work had to be shut down and restarted three times to work properly
4. I had to schedule a doctor's appointment during school because it was the ONLY available time for the next three days
5. At the doctor's office, I discovered that I have gain all the weight back that I lost since August, further strengthening the lose-15-gain-15 cycle I have been in for almost three years

It was just rough all day. Again, no major disasters. I just would have been much happier staying in my pj's all day and watching t.v. I think that would have been a much better use of my time.

Luckily, today, so far, has gone smoothly. My running clothes are washed. My eye is on the mend, although I hate the waxy stuff I have to put in it. Technology behaved. And, lo and behold, the students seem to be learning. Always a good thing.

But I still hate my cat.

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Getting Back Up On That Horse

Since I was 13, I have been a runner. In fact, if you ask me to pick ten words to describe myself, "runner" would definitely be among them. Along with reader, short, and snotty. It's just always who I have been.

This is not to say that I have always loved running. Oh, no. I began running in middle school under duress. I committed the cardinal sin of lying about my mile time in p.e. and my father set his mind to teaching me what it would be like to actually run a 7:45 mile. All summer, we'd run four times a week. By the end I was running four miles at a time and my mile time was under 6 minutes. I actually started to like it (not that I told my dad this.) I especially liked being faster than all the boys in school.

During high school, I ran track, though, to be honest, I never showed my true potential.

Along came college, and 25 pounds my freshman year. To avoid that again my sophomore year, I started running and it became a routine over the next five years.

There are a few "truths" I have come to learn and appreciate about running:

* Quiet time, even if painful, is a blessed thing
* I may hate myself for starting a run, but I'll feel pretty awesome when finished
* It is mandatory to hold oneself up and pick the pace when encountering another runner
* Getting a new running outfit can invigorate the whole process
* If I can run a 10K, I can live through pretty much anything
* Life may force me to take a break every once in a while
* Running will always be waiting for me

This year, I am the primary care giver during the evenings. And I've been really consistent about keeping up with the exercise. However, I've ran 5 times since school started. It's pretty much been all DVD's, which are fine, but they are definitely losing their luster. Quite literally, I can close my eyes and do the routines just based on the music.

Self magazine has a yearly event called the Self Challenge. It's basically just an online log for working out and eating. The workouts include both cardio and strength training. The cardio ones are great for getting back into shape because they are all interval training.

So, like the last couple years, I signed up today, and I'm about to head out to get some running pants. Shorts are just not going to cut it right now. Burrrr.

I'm ready to return to my old friend, running, and get started again. It won't be pretty, I'm sure. In fact, it'll be red-faced, sweaty, and swear-filled. But I know I'll feel better when I'm done. Every time.

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Pictures of Valentines' Day '09

Em and I decided to make cupcakes: strawberry with chocolate icing. All from a box. I'm not about to make my own icing.

She had a great time, but couldn't quite understand why we would only let her have one.

We celebrated the evening with a few small gifts, a delicious dinner, and several episodes of Lost, the second season. The weather outside was awful, so a quiet evening at home was perfect.

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Happy Valentines' Day!

One thing I've never understood is why some people HATE Valentines' Day. I'm not talking about those who have just had a break up; that is completely understandable. And I'm right there with them, avoiding all things heart shaped.

I'm talking about those who say things like: "Me and my boyfriend boycott Valentines'. It's so commerical." Or "Valentines' Day is so stupid. I HATE that day. I wear all black."

Seriously, get a grip.

First of all, any holiday which provides a major emphasis on candy and chocolate CANNOT be bad; hence, my love of Halloween and Easter. Hello, CANDY!

Second, if you only see Valentines' Day as a romantic time, then you are missing out on a lot of potential sweet moments. Sending cards to loved ones, receiving cards from people you don't get to see that often, making cupcakes with your kids, having a special dinner: all these things can make the day really special.

I also think I'm at an advantage because I work at a school. Yesterday, my school did a pretty neat thing. The leadership class wrote every student's name on red, paper hearts and hung them in the cafeteria. Kids then went and found people's hearts and wore them on their persons. At first, I thought to myself, this is going to be a nightmare. Kids are going to pick people's hearts to be mean. The only ones who will like this will be the popular kids who have boyfriends and girlfriends. This is going to be awful.

Nope. I was wrong. It was wonderful.

Kids not only picked the heart of their sweeties; they also picked their friends. Girls and boys participated. It was quite lovely to see everyone covered in red hearts. It made a very typical Friday school day special.

So Valentines' Day doesn't need to be about diamonds and expensive dinners out. Like most things, it's the small little touches that make the day special.

Enjoy your day with your family and loved ones!

Monday, February 9, 2009

Ah, The Cycle of Marriage

My husband and I had a tough year together last year. We moved to a new area, we didn't know anybody, and we faced uncertainty at every turn. He had difficulty finding a job, which lead to a lot of self doubt and frustration.

Then, I got laid off in March, which lead to my own doubt and fear. All in all a fun time.

But this fall, we hit a stride together. Kinda like that corny R&B "Solid Like a Rock" song. We were insanely busy with me working, his credential program, my graduate classes, and our lovely but precocious daughter. We were having great conversations late at night about teaching and school. We actually laughed and goofed around. Money has been an issue, but we have weathered the storms.

Until now, apparently. It seems that we are creating storms between each other lately.

Now, my husband and I both have strong personalities. We are both teachers. We are both first born in our families. We are both used to being in control and making decisions. So when it comes to many enterprises, our interactions are, let's say. dynamic.

Lately, however, we seem to look for arguments. We start snipping at each other at every chance. It seems that we are in a constant cycle of disappointment and annoyance. It has not been a pleasant couple of weeks for the most part.

I'm not quite sure how we got to this place, but I'd really like to have my relationship from the fall back. I know I'm tired, not feeling my best, and stressed about the future (layoffs are imminent), but I really have tried to keep things in perspective.

I don't know exactly what's up, but as our anniversary is coming up, I hope to spend some time with my husband. Hopefully, we can reconnect. Or at least figure out why we are acting like two snarling cats in a burlap sack.

Saturday, February 7, 2009

First Haircut

Today we took Em to get her first haircut. Super necessary as she had three distinct layers. If she didn't already look a ton like me, now she is my blond mini-me. :)

At first, I didn't think it would happen. But once I sat with her, she was fine. The smock wasn't gonna happen, but she actually listened to the stylist, who was amazingly fast.

Our little girl is so big. As she reminds me all the time: "I'm a big girl, mama."