Last weekend was filled with fall-related activities in Lancaster County, PA, like spending time visiting farmer’s markets and antique stores, picking out the perfect pumpkin to adorn my doorstep, eating at a giant buffet (with 200 feet of food!), and going to a QVC outlet (although I’m not obsessed with TV shopping, this place was pretty fun).
I also celebrated my mother-in-law’s birthday (which had me scrawling “happy birthday” on a cake perched in my trunk in the parking lot of our local grocery store, because of course, they would be sold out of birthday cakes on a Sunday evening, when I urgently needed one).
Life lately has been hectic and shows no signs of slowing down with work travel and super-packed weekends (this weekend: a 5k beer run, a birthday celebration for my sister, and raking leaves/closing our pool since we haven’t had a chance to do this yet; next weekend: the Chicago Marathon; weekend after that: a wedding, cheering on runners at the Runner’s World Half Marathon, and a spa day; the last weekend in October: I’m a bridesmaid in a wedding - for the girl in the photo above).
But, life’s been good, so I’ll take it!
This weekend was for:
- Skipping a work karaoke party for a date with compression socks, the couch, and a too-full DVR.
- Slogging through a 20 mile run, filled with too many stops, walking breaks, and ‘Why Isn’t This Damn Run Over yet” thoughts.
- Giant beers and burgers with the husband while watching the Alabama game (my mother-in-law is from Alabama, and although she hasn’t lived there in nearly 40 years, crimson tide runs deep in their veins)
- A 5k with my mom, sister, and their dogs, benefiting a local animal shelter, where I was pulled uphill and downhill by a English Pointer that just wanted to be done.
- Brunch at my mom’s house with delicious egg sandwiches and lots and lots of coffee.
- A Jets game with the husband, where I accessorized appropriately, had a great time tailgating (more beers!) and had such good seats that I saw Mark Sanchez picking his wedgie
Themes of the weekend? Food, running, football. At least two of those are my favorite things, so yup, it was a great one!
Last weekend, I celebrated my 31st birthday with perhaps the most appropriate and my favorite gifts ever - including coming home from a super early run to find the husband sleeping with my birthday card perched upon him, this ’I Hate Running’ sweatshirt, and a new diamond ring.
The weekend was spent running lots of miles (like I said, I started my actual birthday off with an early morning run that let me clear my head and watch the sunrise, and the following day, I completed my first 20 mile training run of this marathon cycle), hanging out with some lovely friends, and spending some quality time on the couch.
I honestly cannot believe I am 31. It feels like yesterday I was 25. or 27. When someone asks my age I immediately freeze and have to do the mental math to figured it out. But in these past 31 years I’ve learned a few things which I feel inclined to share…
- Don’t cry at work. No matter how bad things are, or how mean people are being, or how uncertain the future may be, get to a conference room, a bathroom stall, or your car. Don’t shed tears at your desk. It’s not worth it.
- ”Fake it ‘till you make it” is a fine way to get through life.
- Spending money on events, trips, or travel will always be worthwhile. You get to cultivate experiences, see new things, and get away from the mundane. Travel. Do it.
- Be polite. Cut the attitude. You are not better than anyone else and you don’t know what anyone else is facing, so there’s no need to be rude.
- It may not be completely acceptable to wear leggings as pants - but dang, it’s so comfortable.
- Dry shampoo is one of life’s greatest inventions.
- Write thank you notes. Always.
- Learn to budget. Master this skill early in life and when you’re lusting over items from afar, having a sound budget will make the ‘to buy’ or ‘not to buy’ decision much easier.
- That being said, pay your bills on time. I’m super proud of my impeccable credit score, much of which is due to paying my bills on time (and having a low debt to credit ratio).
- Don’t compare yourself to others. I mean the grass is always greener, right?
- A bowl of cereal or random leftovers can make an absolutely fine dinner. But sometimes it feels really good to cook and too eat off of an actual plate (not out of a take-out container or off of a paper plate).
- Crossing items off to-do lists feels nearly as good as actually completing the task.
- Listen. Don’t always be the one talking. (My Japanese coworkers always say “Two ears, one mouth” and while it sounds silly, it’s actually a pretty wise saying.)
- A good night’s sleep can solve most problems. And when struggling to sleep, never underestimate the power of a glass of wine and Tylenol PM.
- Call your loved ones often. Reach out more often than you think is necessary.
- Green juice doesn’t taste nearly as bad as it looks and it’s a pretty easy way to make you feel like you’re getting enough fruits and veggies.
- If you don’t have time to clean the entire house, make your bed, clean the bathroom, and light some candles.
- Count your blessings. Often. Find gratitude in every day.
- The easiest way to feel like an adult? Pour yourself a glass of wine after work. On a weeknight. Just ‘cause you can.
- A blazer or a cardigan can make nearly any outfit appropriate for work.
- Compliment others. Especially when they deserve it or when they need it.
- Sign up for frequent flyer programs, membership rewards cards, and shoppers club cards. I’ve earned countless number of free flights, free meals, and have gotten so many money saving coupons out of this.
- Read more books. But watch reality TV too, if that’s your vice. Find balance in being cultured and cheesy.
- Be genuine. Whoever you are is who you are. Own it.
- Splurge on the name brand items you feel are necessary (for me it’s toilet paper, ketchup, and mascara) and save when you don’t notice the difference (sandwich bags, nail polish remover, most canned goods).
- You will never regret taking your contacts out. You will regret sleeping with them in.
- Your life is not a movie. You do not need to live it as such. (I really wish someone would have told me this when the husband and I were first dating and I thought it would be romantic to argue with him while standing on a bridge in the pouring rain. In reality, I was just drunk and sloppy and incoherent and should have just gone home.)
- That being said, have a soundtrack to your life. Have great driving songs, and gym/workout songs, and songs that make you reminisce, and songs that make you cry, and songs that make you angry, and songs that just make you feel.
- Share with others. Share your time, your knowledge, or your possessions.
- Take time to sit back and enjoy life. Don’t rush all the time. Try to find a moment of calm in every day.
“This is one more piece of advice I have for you:
don’t get impatient.
Even if things are so tangled up you can’t do anything,
don’t get desperate or blow a fuse
and start yanking on one particular thread
before it’s ready to come undone.
You have to figure it’s going to be a long process
and that you’ll work on things slowly, one at a time.”
— Haruki Murakami
Much needed advice right now.
Jeff and I are celebrating our second wedding anniversary today. Woo hoo! Our wedding day was a blur (fueled by too much champagne and/or whiskey and a flood of emotions), but for real, time has flown. I always wish I could slow down time and savor every moment, because even though we have our challenges, life is pretty dang good with the husband. He’s nearly the opposite of me in many ways (level headed, wants to see the best in people, and so not a planner), but together we make a pretty awesome team. He’s my other half, my sounding board, and my biggest cheerleader. He’s mine and I’m so thankful for that.
when you meet someone new, treat that person as a friend. assume he or she is a winner and will become a positive force in your life. most people wait for others to prove their value. give them the benefit of the doubt from the start. occasionally you will be disappointed, but your network will broaden rapidly if you follow this path.
I haven’t been in the office since last Wednesday (yay for four day weekends!) - so it’s going to take some extra caffeine to put a pep in my step and to help me power through today.
This weekend was great since I:
- Spectated a local four mile race which inspired me to pick up the pace on my run Thursday morning
- Went kayaking with my husband and the in-laws and I actually enjoyed myself (surprising - since I’m not a fan of large bodies of water with any sort of marine life)
- Had my mom over for and impromptu BBQ and sat outside on the porch for hours
- Ran 10mi with a friend who struggled through the route - and then ran 3mi more to finish my long run (all before 10am on Friday!)
- Took some great naps (both on the hammock and on the couch)
- Tackled some major house/yard projects - like cleaning the garage, tearing down an old shed (and filling a dumpster with all it’s contents), putting my closet back together (it was torn apart a few months ago, when our roof leaked and the roofer needed access to our attic), and starting to reupholster our dining room chairs
- Spending time in the pool and poolside (the pups even came in for awhile!)
- Going to a picnic at my mom’s house with my sister (and her boyfriend), the grandparents, and the in-laws
- Doing yoga in my bathing suit
I hope you had an enjoyable weekend. I’m already making plans for the next one!
Guys, I am certifiably a Bag Lady.
In the trunk of my car this morning, there were no less than 6 bags (my purse, my bag for showering at the gym, my work bag - which carries my laptop and misc. folders/work I brought home last night, my Camelbak - which I needed on my run this morning, my bag for yoga tonight, and my lunch bag).
A friend and I met at the gym for some pre-work miles and I showered there before heading out, but man - not going home first makes me have to schlep around even more stuff!
Guys - I dyed my hair dark(er) last weekend and every time I look in the mirror, I do a double-take. It feels as if there’s someone else’s hair (or a wig) sitting on top of my head.
Oh well. it’ll fade, right?
This weekend was for:
- some awesome runs (even though the temps were warm, the humidity was low, and I actually felt pretty darn good on them)
- quality time with my mom (a 3m run on Saturday, a delicious birthday celebratory brunch on Sunday with a grapefruit berry mimosa and a delicious crab and asparagus omelette)
- lounging in the hammock (so much lounging!)
- adult stuff (dropping stuff off at goodwill, laundry, cleaning, figuring out the appropriate amount of chlorine for the pool, grocery shopping)
- Reading (Lean In & catching up on magazines - I totally cried at the RW Boston issue)
- picking up my CSA share(baby greens, garlic scapes, broccoli and cauliflower)
- contemplating my next career move (part of me just wants to relax and be complacent, but most of me keeps asking “what’s next?”)
I hope you had an enjoyable summer weekend as well!
Today in knee-jerk, How is It Nearly Memorial Day Already? purchases:
- A three-day Blue Print Cleanse deal from Gilt City
- 20 classes to anti-gravity yoga/faux barre classes
- Self-tanning supplies (L’Oreal Sublime Bronze Towlettes and Jergens Natural Glow Moisturizer
- A new DietBet placed
It’s almost time for bathing suits, bare arms, and sweat-inducing weather. I probably should have been getting ready weeks ago, but better late than never, right?
This weekend started out rough (there were tears by 9am on Saturday!) - brought on by a DNF at the Brooklyn Half marathon. (Long story short, I kept a slightly faster than easy pace for the first 5k, but then tried to pick up my pace and when I try to run faster, I change my stride length. These longer strides tug on my IT band/oblique/love handle, and after a few miles of this, I was in tons of pain [enough that my whole body was shaking and running was extremely uncomfortable/not fun]. Since the most important reason I run is to have fun, I pulled the plug before mile 6 and hopped a train to meet the husband at Coney Island. Ironically enough (thank you, Universe, for this cosmic intervention), the D, N. and F trains all run from Coney Island. Hah.
After lots of thought (an hour and a half ride home will do that to you), I realized that all the long, slow runs I’ve been doing, and skipping all the hard runs (speedwork, hills, etc), doesn’t bode well when I try to pick up the pace, even slightly. I obviously have some sort of muscle imbalance, and some stride issues (since I am constantly having some sort of injury/pre-injury). When I run fast, I extend my legs further, and that tugs on my core. It’s obviously all not about speed (in fact, I’m kinda out of my PR’ing mindset - and have been for the last year or so), but I want to be able to pick up the pace and not feel like I’m going to die.
The rest of the day was spent doing grown-up things (like housework, yardwork, laundry, etc) and wanting to go for a run (the mid-afternoon rain showers would have made for a great running adventure, but since I was walking around the house with an ice pack attached to my hip, and I just DNF’ed a few hours earlier, I figured rest would be best).
Sunday was my favorite kind of day. I ran (or more like slow jogged) the Color Me Rad race with my mom and sister. We had a wonderful time, dancing in the bursts of color, pausing to take photos, and getting as messy/colorful as possible. We then went for breakfast at an awesome cafe, where I had a delicious Eggs Benedict with pulled pork and goat cheese (holy yum!) and then went to a local running store where my mom replaced her shoes. (Side note - I totally experienced shoe envy at the awesome neon colors out there right now! I stocked up on shoes last fall/winter while my favs were on sale but man, mine are so boring in comparison!) I came home, showered, and went to Trader Joe’s - where I bought ALL THE FOOD. Seriously. The back of the car was full.
The evening ended with some quality time with the husband and dogs, where they reminded me, that yes - blondes have more fun.
I started the weekend by bawling but ended with tears in my eyes from laughing so hard. Such is life, right?