Because I'm Terrible at Scrapbooks
This Isn't CTU

Friday: The Good Edition

The good: My recovery week ends Sunday!
The bad: Insanity is going to kick my butt next week! (or maybe that’s a good thing?)

The good: Getting my masters degree and hard work at the office paid off and I got a promotion this week!
The bad: I have to travel for work next week. :(

The good: I am travelling on my own, which I prefer most of the time.
The bad: I have to drive on my own, which I hate most of the time

The good: Since I’m on my own, I can eat what I want and can load up on healthy things
The bad: No green monsters for me OR Will this week.

The good: The weather is going to be decent where I’m headed… but still cold.
The bad: Long walks to and from various buildings… in the cold.

The good: I arrive with plenty of daylight, incase for when I get lost.
The bad: I get back to OKC at 5:45… which inevitably means 8 because, really, do flights ever get to where they’re going on time? Hopefully I just jinxed myself for the good?

The good: Will is playing paintball with the guys this weekend which gives me some time to myself.
The bad: My sister has a weekend class which means no sister time!

The good: It’s Friday! And a good week for me. Let’s end on a good and not a bad! Happy weekend, friends. More to come.

Pizza in Trunks (and a whole lot more)

Hi friends!

It’s Thursday- and it’s my Friday!

I am incredibly jubilant about the opportunity for a vacation day and am looking forward to the time off.

My company instituted a new vacation policy this year whereby if you accrue 2.5 times your yearly vacation allowance, you stop accruing vacation altogether until you get your time down.

Bummer.

Things are always busy around my office (coupled with being understaffed), so I don’t take many days, so I have been battling “use or lose” time constantly since the rule went into effect.

The good thing about that, though, is that it has allowed me to take a much needed break from work.

I have a fun filled Friday planned too, which makes me happy.

But first, I feel I ought to recap last weekend (yeah, yeah I know…. “old news”).

That way when I’m old and in my 30s next month (wah!) I can fondly remember the good old days of being in my 20s.

My mom’s birthday was on Friday, so we went over to celebrate. My sweet sister made me my own vegan coconut crème pies! How thoughtful, right!? I was so touched by her sweetness!
Vegan coconut creme pies!

Sadly, my mom wasn’t feeling very well so we did not stay all that long so she could rest. She and my dad were leaving for Vegas the next morning, so we were all hoping she would feel better before they left.

And remember how I mentioned having Layla to myself on Saturday? Well, it didn’t end up turning out that way but it was still a good day!

I went to the gym early that morning and then got ready and went to the grocery store. The weather was supposed to be beautiful so the plan was for me, P, and Layla go to Target and look for some cute spring clothes and then take Layla to the park. And then enjoy a crisp glass of white wine. Perfecto!

Only, we didn’t end up doing any of that.!

I ended up going over to see them around 11 and we hung around for a little while.

We started feeling lazy and got into our usual rut of being comfortable and not wanting to leave the house. Plus, since Layla is teething, my sister is always a little nervous that she is taking a ticking time bomb to a public place that could detonate into a mess of tears and screams at any time. Yet, at the same time, we didn’t want to waste the day.

We contemplated a few things and then I mentioned it would be fun if we could still go do something that was sort of low key, but still allowed us to get out.

So we ended up going to Zam Zams for lunch! It is a middle eastern restaurant in the city that is very casual and perfect for our needs. It was like old times in Kuwait, sharing grape leaves and hummus with my sister and talking about a million different things. And Layla was so good too!

We ate outside to enjoy the day, and it was just such a good quick trip out! Afterward, we went back to the house and hung around so Layla could nap (which never ended up happening).
Zam zams!

Will and I needed to go to Sams, so we all ended up going and enjoying the fun excitement that is Sam’s Club. Ha!

Is that place ever empty?!

We got the things we needed… and then got their incredibly non-vegan Sam’s cheese pizza to go.

Yep, it happened.

On the way home, Layla passed out in the back of P’s car. She was exhausted from her busy day out, and hadn’t taken a proper nap all day. 

The last thing my sister wanted to do was get her out of the car and wake her.

So- the two of us ended up eating our pizza in the back of her car with the trunk door open while she slept.

What a sight!

Hey, you do what you gotta do with a teething, sleeping baby.

Afterward we watched some TV and went to sleep around 9.

Wild night.

P and Layla ended up staying with us that night, and around 3 that morning Layla was up crying.

I got up and went in to check on them and she was up for a good 45 minutes, and I feared she wasn’t going to go back to sleep for a while.

I have to admit, I wasn’t much help. I suppose I was there for moral support mostly? She finally drifted to sleep and slept several more hours.

Sunday seems like a big blur to me. We didn’t get out except to get a fancy new pooper scooper for the back yard.

Nice.

That way Will and I will both have one and can divide and conquer.

Good plan!

We had P and Layla over for dinner, and that was about it! I’m sure there is more to that day, but it seems like ages ago.

My allergies were giving me trouble Sunday and could hardly sleep that night. I ended up taking my second sick day with my company and allowed myself some time to rest.

I spent the day with P and Layla which was so nice!

I rested and monitored work from the couch, and we watched TV and movies all day. Definitely a lazy Monday, but it was definitely helpful because I am feeling better today.

And can finally breathe through my nose again.

Awesome! Haha

We also signed up something fun, and I can’t wait to share it with you guys once it happens!

And now it’s Thursday and I get another weekend all over again!

We have plans to take Layla to see the Easter bunny, but I’m not quite sure if that will still happen.

Remember how I said my mom got sick last Friday?

Yeah.

So it ended up being worse than we all thought.

My mom is such a freaking trooper.

So she woke still feeling sick Saturday morning, but she and my dad still continued forward with their travel plans. They ended up doing a million things during their weekend, from seeing a couple shows, to touring the town, riding in some fancy race cars, and who knows what else! All the while, my mom hadn’t had food or water since that Friday before she got sick.

How terrible, right?!

She is so stubborn and would not let my dad take her to an AM-PM clinic while they were there, so she pressed on.

What!?

They got in Tuesday night, and my dad took her to the hospital. They admitted her and immediately got her on an IV because of her severe dehydration. And when they finished that one, they started another. They ran an X-Ray and CT scan and determined there was some sort of blockage in her esophagus that needs to be removed.

Thankfully they were able to start fluids immediately.

Unfortunately she is still at the hospital and is still waiting to be hydrated enough before they can perform the procedure. :(

What a way to finish the week, right? Geez…

I am so thankfully she is doing better, and cannot believe how hard headed that woman is! We were all worried about her! but I know she wanted my dad to have a good time in Vegas since they had never been before.

So tomorrow might be a little relaxed and might just entail us hanging close to the house to spend time with our mom.

Plus I still haven’t seen their pictures!

So that’s my big weekend update and weekend preview.

Not sure what else is on the docket, but I’m sure you will hear all about it. smile

Lots of love. ❤

A Quick Trip to Greece

I am picturing myself somewhere beautiful and mild. Not too hot, not to cold.

Somewhere perfect.

Beautiful black sand beach,

Gorgeous, crisp white houses with ocean-blue roofs.

The smell of the sea.

Ah Santorini.

My sister and I visited during our cruise extravaganza in 2008, and it was so lovely.

We toured the city, walked the beach, and then ended up finding a fun little restaurant by the water that served all sorts of yummy food.

And the thought of the Mediterranean brings back good memories to my heart.

Especially on days and weeks when I am struggling.

And I am struggling a little right now, friends!

Sequestration could definitely have a major impact on my job, and it has been weighing heavily on me for weeks.

Maybe we will talk about this later?

Today, however, is about being whisked away to somewhere we love.

And since we have to go to work today and can’t just jump on a plane to Greece- let’s at least enjoy a relaxing lunch that takes us there!

I’ll bring the blanket, you bring the wine, and we will have a picnic in our offices.

Good plan!

But first- we have to make lunch!

Tabouli is on the menu today.

It is often made with bulgur, but I want to punch up the protein so I made it with quinoa.

In my rice cooker.

Which I love.

But we have already talked about that recently.

Anyhow- I made a package of quinoa and let it cool.

Meanwhile, I mixed the following:

-Juice from one lemon
- 1 heaping TBSP minced garlic

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-2 tsp Dijon mustard

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-2 TBSP white wine vinegar
-1/4 cup olive oil

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-Salt & pepper to taste

Then I diced a large cucumber

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and halved a pint of cherry tomatoes.

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I then chopped up four scallions, a big handful of parsley, and about half a cup of fresh mint and tossed it into the cooled quinoa.

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Then mix!

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I would usually add in the veggies and dressing too, but since I am eating this for the whole week I didn’t want my quinoa to get mushy.

For that reason, I kept everything seperate and will assemble the night before each work day.

We are ready to eat!

Since I am making this last all week, I decided to make it more “Arab-style” by having it as a “mezze,” which means served with lettuce (or in our case- spinach). I topped my spinach with the tabouli and also added some tofu.

Yum!

Protein, fiber, and fat all in one complete meal.

Now all we need is the perfect day and a serene beach.

More to come…

Desserts in My Drawers

I literally stuck a big, beautiful pink strawberry cupcake in my desk drawer Friday forgot about it.

Yes, this did happen.

Ugh I am almost 30 and I still find myself doing the silliest things!

Is that even silly?

Um, how about creepy/weird/stupid/and what the heck were you thinking!?

Those are probably more appropriate.

And this is NOT the first time.

(HELP!)

Do you remember this?

I disgust myself.

So- hear me out.

Because I at least get to plead my case, right?

There’s always a story with me…

You know by now that I try to limit my chemical crap-storm intake.

If I am going to eat junk, it’s going to be on my terms and it going to be planned in advance.

So when my wonderful boss brought me a cupcake Friday from one of the trendiest cupcake shops in town, I was touched by the thoughtfulness!

It was even strawberry, which is my favorite (best boss ever).

I graciously thanked her but thought to myself- “there is no way I am going to eat that!”

However, it was so kind of her to do it, that I did not want to offend.

My first option is always to give it away. Yes, I know. I am an enabler. Anyway- that’s what I like do.

I put it in a Styrofoam bowl and hid it in my drawer, like any completely normal person would do, you know- to be a little discrete about the fact that I didn’t eat it and was going to take it home to Will.

Only I didn’t.

And now it’s Monday morning.

And ants have probably gnawed a hole in my desk.

Because I am a complete scatterbrained blonde.

Geez!

Talk about TLC Hoarders Food edition!

Who does that!?

No one, Brittny.

Because that is completely ridiculous.

I know! Let’s post about it for all the world to see!

Genius.

Anyway- let’s hope I have a drawer when I get into the office.

Happy Monday! Haha

Sigh…

Since we are on the subject of food… might as well share this week’s menu (not hidden in drawers, mind you!).

Post-workout green smoothie to start my morning as usual.

Breakfast later that morning?

Don’t ask.

Let’s just start calling breakfast, “the usual” until such a time in which I actually change what I’m having.

In which case, I will let you know.

Until then?

It’s the usual.

Gosh I am so boring.

Yet simultaneously unpredictable (um, read cupcake story above).

Lunch is homemade tabouli salad!

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I am sharing the recipe with you guys tomorrow.

For some reason snacks this week are all about celery.

Please don’t ask.

I have no idea why.

Round one was with homemade avocado hummus (recipe coming soon),

And round two was with natural peanut butter.

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Hurray for celery!

?

I don’t know…

It just seemed like the right thing to say.

Anyway-

We are having loaded potatoes tonight because I have a hair appointment and need to have something easy since Will has to feed himself tonight. I made BBQ chicken yesterday, and baked the potatoes (sweet potato for me!). Now all Will has to do is microwave and assemble with toppings. Fool proof.

Hopefully.

Tuesday and Wednesday we are having red beans and rice. Easy crockpot recipe that is ready when I get home.

Thursday we are having this tasty honey sesame crockpot chicken over rice. I am having mine with tofu. I hope it is good!

As usual, I end most nights with a protein shake.

All of these items will be prepared fresh and will not find there ways into obscure locations.

Scouts honor.

Now if only I could say the same for the cupcake on Friday…

The Goods and Bads: Friday Travel Edition

The Good
I woke up on time and got to the airport quickly and without getting lost

The Bad
I forgot my Brita water bottle in the rental car

The Good
Got through security early and had time to get to get situated in the airport and enjoy breakfast and a Venti green tea. And got Will vegan cookies from Boston! I hope he likes them.

The Bad
I had to pee the second I got on the plane.

I don’t pee on planes.

So I didn’t.

I will probably have bladder issues later in life.

Awesome.

The Good
Thought I was going to get an aisle seat (That is how my company travel site automatically sets me up)

The Bad
Got a window seat.

On a packed plane.

The Good
Decided to enjoy it.

Enjoyed it.

The Bad
I enjoyed it alright.

While sitting in the plane for an hour waiting for the crew to fix some super computer on the plane.

The Bad (again)
Got to Detroit.

10 minutes after my plane took off.

Here is where we sit and cry in the airport in front of everyone -----> _________

The Good
I know! Maybe they can find me a flight home that is fairly similar.

The Bad
They couldn’t.

Not even close.

“A flight into Oklahoma City? Ahahahahaha”

Thanks Lady.

In fact, the best available was 8 ½ hours later.

Who doesn’t love a good Detroit layover all day!?

The Good
Got a $6 meal voucher.

The Bad
Nothing costs $6 in an airport.

The Good
Got to watch the pretty red tram pass over my head a billion times.

Considered riding it a billion times.

The Bad
Didn’t ride it.

The Good
Worked for 5 hours on crap I would have had to deal with over the weekend.

The Bad
Still have some crap to deal with over the weekend (but not as much)

The Good
Three hours to go. Going to have dinner and put my work down for a bit.

The Bad
I have been up since 4:30 and am ready to sleep!

The Good
I have nothing to do tomorrow aside from grocery shopping (with half of America getting ready for the super bowl), unpacking, laundry, and cleaning.

Crap. That is not a “good.” That is a “bad,” right?

Eh… I’m getting all side tracked.

It has been a long day!

Hopefully yours has been better. I am ready to be home and back on track that’s for sure.

Everything suffers when you are on the road! Between keeping up with emails, family, eating right, and workouts, it’s just not as good as being home.

Back on track tomorrow, even with the super bowl looming.

I had hoped to share my healthy menu with you, friends, but I honestly have not even given it much thought between everything going on this week.

I’ve been fairly silent about work the last few years, but I will disclose that lately it has been difficult. Lots of challenges, lots of layoffs, lots of absorbing heaps of work…

I’m ready to go home. I’ve been counting down the days to my trip home, even on this super short trip!

I got to Facetime with Will for the first time this week too! I was much more excited than Will was. He’s old fashioned and probably would have been just fine talking on the phone, but I insisted I see his prettiness! Good times.

So that is all for now. I will check in later this weekend. Just ready to get some water and food and stop staring at work for awhile.

Happy weekend friends! Let’s make it a good one!

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Work Trips: How to Keep it Clean

So remember that post where I said I had to travel and wasn’t happy about it?

Yeah, I didn’t travel.

And I was happy about it.

Until three hours after I cancelled my trip I found out, “Hey! You have to go next week instead!”

Lucky lady.

Here’s where I whine and cry about having to go -> _________.

Okay.

Glad that’s out of the way.

The one “good” thing is that I saw this possibility coming, so I literally kept my mostly packed suitcase in our closet all last week.

Will loved that.

I just could not bear to put everything away knowing in the back of my head I was probably going to have to go the following week.

So I didn’t!

Good plan.

Last week I was going to have to go with my boss, but this week I went alone.

The good news is when I travel alone, I am way, way less annoying.

Because the only person that has to put up with me is, well, me.

I have an internal mind freakout at the thought of travelling and being unprepared.

So I come prepared.

Really prepared.

So, I thought it might be helpful to share some of my CRAZY helpful tips for travelling for work so perhaps it will inspire you to be healthy on the go.

Nothing is worse than being hungry and ill-prepared- so don’t be! Let’s go!

There are lots of staples I absolutely have to take when I travel.

Sadly, my beloved green smoothies are not one of those things. (duh! “I’m sorry Mr. TSA worker, but I need to take this liquid on the plane. It’s full of antioxidants and veggies and vitamins and basically is a food and not a liquid. Whatta ya say?”)

But there are plenty of others.

So before we begin (yes begin. as in all that stuff above? Yeah- it was not really the beginning. Okay, I guess technically it was… but now we’re getting to the meat? Eh meat. We don’t do meat. Getting to the nitty gritty? Sure why not.), I should clarify this was a quick trip.

A super quick trip, by design and necessity.

YAY!

I pack a little differently for short trips than long ones, and I also pack differently when I travel alone versus with others.

This post?

It’s about a short trip.

Alone.

The nice thing about travelling alone is that I’m the boss. No eating heavy meals at night, and no eating junk on the go. Travelling alone means I pretty much always have a plan, and if I don’t? I have a backup.

Take my first travel day, for example. I took the early flight so I had my last green smoothie before I went to the airport and packed breakfast with me. The very first thing I always do when I get through security? I buy a huge water bottle.  I cannot think of much worse than being without water. Pretty much at all. In fact, last weekend P and I were hanging out and we had to make a pit stop to buy a water bottle because I hadn’t planned ahead!

Remember that part about me being annoying? See what I mean?

A few hours after breakfast I had an apple. And a little later, around lunchtime I had a peanut butter sandwich on whole grain bread I brought.

With carrots.

Yes. I might as well bring a diaper bag with me.

I could probably feed a small preschool class between my apples, carrots, and peanut butter sammiches.

Geez a lou.

And this, my friends, is why I’m annoying.

Just call me Mary Poppins. You just never know what is going to come out of my bag.

Anyway- I didn’t have time to grab anything between flights and knew I would be hungry. And I hate being hungry. So I planned ahead.

But wait. There’s more.

A few hours after that I finally got to my destination, grabbed my crap, and headed to my rental car.  I had a 100 calorie almond pack (:cough: and more carrots) and headed toward my hotel.

So you get my jist:

1. I’m annoying to travel with.
2. I’m healthy to travel with.
3. And you will never go hungry with me around.

So let’s keep moving.

Prior to my trip, I looked ahead to find the nearest grocery store to my hotel so I could pick up some water and fresh fruit, and maybe even a salad for dinner. Yay!

Turns out, a Trader Joes was close which got me so excited! I knew I would be able to find healthy stuff to keep me fueled for dinner and breakfast the following morning. I have never been there before, so I will try to remember to post about it later.

I picked up some stuff and headed to the hotel. Here’s where I unpacked this crap.

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I take my protein shakes with me wherever I go, as well as a shaker bottle and water bottle. I combined my flax and chia in my shake containers so I had a complete meal on the go for my mornings. Plus I had some fruit from my trip to the store. I also bought some Luna bars and almonds for an emergency moment. I don’t know what today will hold, so I might be on the go all day. At least I know I have food to keep me going if I’m not able to stop for lunch.

Obviously not my first choice, but at least I have an option around to be safe.

I also bring a water bottle to carry around so I don’t have my thirsty moment freakout situation (reason number 431 why I’m annoying to travel with).

Oh, and I also brought my apple cider vinegar in that silver bodybuilding.com shaker bottle.

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I packed it very meticulously to avoid any regretful mishaps.

I also preplanned my workouts this week. I try to set very attainable workout goals while on the road. I knew my nights would be full of catching up on work, so I brought two days of workout wear but only set a goal of working out once. I’ll have to let you know how I fare!

So there you have it. Bottom line is, while I may be a little annoying on the road (oh, and I feel like I should clarify I’m more flexible when travelling with others… the nice thing about this trip is that I didn’t have to be!), I find ways to stay as healthy as possible.

It is definitely possible.

All I want to do is hurry this trip and head home.  Here’s to a healthy (and fast!) second half of my trip.

When Work Drives You Bananas

Make oats.

I love oatmeal.

LOVE.

For the last several months, though, I’ve focused primarily on having only fruit for breakfast. However now that we are into the cold winter months of January, nothing seems to warm me up and start my day right like a satisfying bowl of oats.

The trouble is, however, I don’t plan time for breakfast in the mornings, so I eat once I get to work. That’s why fruit is a great option most days. Easy to transport and no preplanning needed on my part.

Don’t get me wrong, I definitely have moments where I go through phases of making overnight oats and bringing them in for weeks on end. But it’s been awhile! I wanted something filling and quick, but also warm- so overnight oats wasn’t going to cut it.

And while I love the idea of me standing over a stovetop making steel cut oats for the umpteenth time Sunday afternoon in preparation for the week ahead, things have been hectic and the less time I can spend in the kitchen, the better.

So without further ado- this has been my portable breakfast each morning.

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It’s not dazzling and fancy, or something that will make you say, “Wow! What a brilliant idea! I’m going to make that for my guests when they come over for brunch this weekend!”

Rather, it’s an easy way to eat a healthy breakfast instead of reaching for the utterly worthless flavored quick oat breakfast pouches.

Don’t eat those.

This recipe “features” (haha) rolled oats, because they are less processed than the quick oats.

Ready?

Let’s make breakfast!

I like using milk so much better than water, so the night before work I pour one cup of almond milk into a portable bottle.

I also dump 1/2 cup of oats into a tupperware container,

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as well as a teaspoon of chia,

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and cinnamon.

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I’m all set!

All I have to do in the morning is slice a banana over my oats (and I like to top with even more cinnamon) and head to work!

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Once there, I pour my milk into my tupperware of oats and microwave for two minutes or until it starts to bubble.

I let it sit for about a minute or so afterwards, to make sure the oats absorb all the extra liquid.

Then it’s time to eat a warm, healthy breakfast while answering emails about very important work stuff.  confused

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So take a few mintues to make yourself a nice breakfast.

You will be glad you did!

More to come…

Thursday Confessions: The Awesome Edition

1. I have gargantuan zit on the left side of my face.

Is this REALLY a confession though?

Because I’m thinking it is not.

There is absolutely no secret that this thing is sucking the life out of my entire being, throbbing, and growing appendages…

flailing about and trying to strangle anyone within a five foot radius.

So technically, this lovely freaking gigantor little phenomenon is definitely not a confession.

But to you it sort of is since (thankfully) you don’t have to look at me today. Because I’m certain your eyes would go straight to my chin and you wouldn’t be able to look away as my mouth moved, talking to you about very important things such as the weather, or what I had for breakfast, or my favorite pink lip glosses.

And despite all my best efforts in trying to cover it up, let’s face it, it just makes it worse.

Far worse.

Yet I still put forth my best effort to discretely conceal the suburban neighborhood on my chin. The one currently planning its homeowner association meeting so it can plot, and breed, and spread to the rest of my face

Poor me.

And it totally bothers Will to no end that I don’t pop them (Trust me, I’ve even talked about this on my blog before. I will spare you, I promise.). However, doing so totally makes things so much worse and prolongs the whole process for me.

Plus, they seem to come in threes. This is number two. One more huge giant zit to go.

Awesome.

So- wow. Maybe I shouldn’t have led with that.

Sorry.

Was that a little too much for you?

Who am I kidding, of COURSE it was.

Sadly, I refuse to delete all of this incredibly open and honest dermatological discussion. Instead, it remains in stark black and white for all people I seriously don’t want to read, to read.

Awesome again.

This first confession? Totally NOT awesome.

2. I have to travel next week and I am pretty sad about it.

Now that, unlike my zit, is a true confession. The only people who know I’m sad are Will and P. There are so many things going on at work right now, and I just really do not want to travel and deal with them. :(

Not awesome.

Plus meeting new people with a giant zit on my chin?

Double not awesome.

3. I’m going to a George Strait concert this weekend and I am not as annoyed as I thought I would be.

Hmm… I’m thinking this is semi-awesome?

I am not a big country music fan, but Will is. However, I actually like George Strait’s stuff (you know, out of the two whole country music songs I have on my iPod haha) so I don’t have much to complain about, really.

Will loves George Strait, and this is old King George’s last hurrah before retiring, so when we heard he was coming to OKC, we jumped to get tickets.

I sort of thought I would be sort of “blah” about the whole thing, but I am actually pretty pumped! I think one of the main reasons is that Will and I are total boring grannies these days, and I am excited about getting out to do something young(ish) married couples without kids do. So, perhaps this one is mot so much a confession and more of a realization.

In fact, let’s change that semi-awesome to awesome!

4. I have a sick affection for Cheez-Its right now

That?

Not awesome.

Oh, as if you did not already know, they are definitely NOT vegan friendly.

Just putting that out there.

It’s not like I would ever willingly go to the store and buy these things, however Will likes them in his lunch.

Because he hates me.

Actually, the truth is- it’s not really the Cheez-It I have an affection for, it’s really anything that Will decides he wants in his lunch.

Wheat thins?

I’ve had to go to the store mid week to buy an extra box.

Triscuits?

Same.

Lay’s Potato Chips?

You really CAN’T eat just one. I know this.

Anyhow, I will put in a couple handfuls for Will’s lunch, followed by another couple handfuls for myself.

Ridiculous.

See this?

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It’s pretty much my view the first five minutes I’m home.

NOT AWESOME

Had we not decided to go to Sam’s a few weeks ago to get the biggest.box.of cheez-its ever. (brilliant idea), I likely would have had to go to the store to get more.

So please don’t tell Will I secretly eat his disgusting Cheez-its. I feel gross even admitting it.

Ugh.

So there you have it.

I kinda put a lot out there.

Anything you need to get off your chest?

Back to Work: Beating the Post-Christmas Blues

It’s Thursday and I headed back to work today. Sadly, I had to work on and off most of this week, so it wasn’t much of a break. :(

The decent thing was that I was at least able to be home while I was doing it.

Something about heading back to work after New Years is depressing.

Anyone else?

It’s more than just the end of the weekend blues, it is a true sadness. For one, Christmas, my favorite time of the year is over. And two- I have no scheduled company holidays until Memorial Day.

Memorial Day!

Granted, that is the next scheduled day, which means I could use a vacation day beforehand, yet just knowing the next company holiday isn’t until May is even more of a bummer.

Not only that, but work has been a bit of a bummer lately, making it a little worse.

You know what’s funny? Pretty much during the entire 3 years in Kuwait I almost always talked about work- all the time! Yet we’ve been back going on 5 years now, and I rarely talk about it these days.

There are lots of reasons, I will not bore you with. However, I thought this post would be helpful not only to me- but maybe some of you who are also suffering from your post-Chrstimas, back to work blues too.

In additional to physical and spiritual health, I also think you have to take care of your mental health- and work is a place that can drive some of us crazy! So here is my plan for the next few weeks to help keep my spirits up as I get over the back to work blues.

1.Pray
As simple as it sounds, that my number one go-to way to stay focused. To pray and surrender each day to God.

There have been days when I have felt downright lousy walking through the doors to my office, and I don’t want to be that way. I want to be thankful for what I have right now and prayerful that I will focus on the joy I have in Christ and reflect that to others regardless of all going on around me.

2.Be expectant
In addition to being prayerful, I want to be expectant.

In fact, I have already taken some steps of faith based on this notion. I want to trust that God is bigger than me, and big enough to take care of me, and I am going to do what I can but also wait expecting God to move.

3.Plan something
Anything.

Just make a date to look forward to.

Whether it’s lunch with friends, a date with your husband, a trip to the mall, or a trip to somewhere cool- just freaking have something to get excited about and to help you get through tough days.

I don’t have that planned yet, but you better believe I am already thinking about it! Ha, and thinking about the possibilties alone keeps me positive.

4.Focus on what’s important
Let’s not forget most of us have jobs because we have to.

Right now Will and I really want to refinance our house. With the extra money it will help us finally be able to begin paying off our one last piece of debt other than our house.  When I think about refinancing the house and paying off our debt I am reminded of Dave Ramsey’s “gazelle intensity” and feel refocused about working to live instead of living to work (which is all too often what I do these days).

5.Plan a day off
Just one day!

I am so bad about doing this. So much, in fact, that I am constantly in “use or lose time” because my hours accrue too much. Toward the end of last year, I made a point to start taking care of myself and stop letting my vacation stack up to the point where I was going to lose days. It’s not worth it. I haven’t decided when my next day off will be, but it will most definitely be before Memorial Day!

6.Spruce up the place.
We are at work SO LONG each day.

Don’t even stop to think about how it adds up over a lifetime, because it’s depressing when you do.

Anyway, since we are at work so much we might as well make our environment a little friendlier and more personalized, right? Would I rather come to work and stare at a cold, white wall, or pictures of good memories? Duh.

7.Get up and around.
Sitting at my desk all day is a drag as it is (hello sedentary lifestyle!), so I try to get up and do a walkabout every hour or so. It keeps me feeling refreshed and positive.

So that’s my plan for making it through the cold days ahead. I am honestly not all that sure what God wants for me at work, but I want what he wants and am praying that he will take care of me. Here’s to getting over those post-Christmas, winter blues!

2012 Review & A Look Ahead

Happy New Year’s Eve friends!

I cannot believe we are about to embark on 2013.

While I definitely love my lists, one list I rarely make is a new year’s resolution list. Sure, over the course of my life I have done it here and there. However, I tend to come from the school of that that- if I wasn’t willing to make a change today, why would January 1 make it stick? But that’s just me. I know a lot of people that make and stick to them, which I greatly admire. Different strokes for different folks!

Anyhow, today I want to take a few minutes to highlight some of the things that stood out in 2012, and do a quick Get My Butt in Gear wrap up. AND (as if that wasn’t enough!) I want to take some time to look ahead to 2013.  Ready? Let’s go!

January
-Back to school after break. :(
-Had THREE cavities- yikes!
-Decided to take a 30 day no meat and reduced animal product challenge (little did I know how it would stick!).

February
-Served as a juror for the very first time! Thankfully it only lasted a couple days!
-Went to Patrick AFB for work and took some time to enjoy the beautiful weather!
Cocoa beach

-Did another 30 day vegan challenge and decided to adopt it as my primary diet.

March
-Will and I celebrated 8 years of marriage.

April
-I turned 29. And wanted to cry. :(
13 April 12

Went to the red and white game (as usual!), and this time my dad joined us.
RnW 12

May
-Looked for a bigger moon, couldn’t find it

-Spent Memorial Day weekend with my sister and made art for Layla.
Art for Layla!

-We also went to the OU big 12 baseball game. 
Ou baseball!

June
-Will started a new job! Definitely a good day for us.
-I also went to Boston (again) for work.
Boston

-Had a surprise baby shower for P!
Surprise shower!
Untitled

July
-The best month this year! P’s Layla bug was born!

Such an awesome day.

I remember going to the hospital at like 2 the morning of the 5th that it was time.

I will always cherish walking up and down the hall with my sister, hding her hand, as she had contractions and we timed them on her phone.

I will never forget when it was finally time for Layla to arrive, and seeing the miracle of her birth.

Amazing.

Words like awesome and amazing should be reserved for days like that, because that is what that day simply was.

Untitled
Untitled

Finished off the month having Will’s parents spend the night with us and celebrating Will’s 32nd birthday at Mickey Mantles for dinner.

Aug
-Had the longest weekend ever on the weekend of the 4th and 5th for my comprehensive final exam.

30 hours,

25 pages,

and a pop topic.

Nothing but sheer pain.

But after that I was DONE WITH SCHOOL!!
School is over!

Went to The Stone Lion Inn with my parents for a murder mystery weekend. Had heaps of fun- and Will was the killer! And my mom was the one who died!
Stone Lion Inn

September
-Kicked off OU football season, and even took a trip back home to our stomping grounds for our school rivalry game. My team won!
OU Kansas St

October
-OU-Texas weekend! And a victory.
Unhook Em

I also celebrated P’s first Halloween with Layla. Cutest bunny I’ve ever seen!

Untitled

November
-Spent the night with Will’s grandparents and had a nice Thanksgiving at their place with Will’s family the following day.
Blove Thanksgiving 2012

Enjoyed round two with my family the day after!

Wrapped up football season, on a very cold day!
Chilly Willy OU-OSU

December
-Had a string of layoffs at work :(
-Went to Will’s Christmas party.
Christmas Party 2012

-Enjoyed Christmas eve with my family! Had a white Christmas and had to postpone Christmas with Will’s family.
Untitled

What a year!

I’m glad I took time to do that.

That crap?

It’s more for me than it is for you. In fact, this was a very time consuming and annoying post! But when I am 85 and old, I hope I will actually be able to look on this silly blog one day and remember some of those memories!

So a 2012 recap would not be complete without taking some time to assess my Get Your Butt in Gear results!

I think my weekly challenges to myself were incredibly beneficial in my ability to set a goal and stick to it on a weekly basis. Long-term fitness goals are great, but I think short-term goals are equally important. The weekly accountability of publicly setting a goal and having to report back most definitely kept me on track better than if I just sent it myself and didn’t have someone checking in with me. In fact, even though I am wrapping the challenge to myself up, I still think I might devote the end of my Monday posts to set some goals just for myself.

Alright! Onward to 2013!

Like I said, I don’t really have any resolutions, per say. However, I just want to continue and improve what I’ve already started.

I want to know God more and really seek him. I throw that around so much, but the more I read and learn, the more I feel like I barely know him. I want to really know him in this year.

I want to be a better wife, family member, and friend. I want to make time for people I care about most

I want to continue to further my healthy lifestyle in eating and working out. I want to challenge myself and learn more.

I want to contemplate my career future more. I want to finally realize I’m not that girl in Kuwait learning her way and acknowledge that I am older, wiser, know what the heck I am doing, and am worth it.

I want to be okay with turning 30. Hopefully I will be- because it is coming whether I am ready or not!

I also want to start today, because that is what I am guaranteed. Hopefully you will do the same. Happy new year, and here’s to 2013. 

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About

brittny I'm B-Love. Lover of God, my husband Will, my doggies, OU football, weight training, plyometrics healthy eating (mostly!), peanut butter, and all things health related. Buckle up and get ready for my constant embarrassing moments, health and fitness tips,and my effort to rely on Christ while living life in the real world. Follow me on Feedly! Sign up for monthly emails at blove@theblovelife.com!


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