Monday, January 30, 2012

Banality for a Monday

I have taken photos of myself in my new eyeglasses! Regardless of any amount of adjusting I do, my glasses always sit crooked on my face. Either the bones in my nose are uneven, or my ears are misaligned, or every pair of glasses in the universe is flawed. I am not sure which, if any of these things are true.

In any case, if we were to meet, this is more than likely the me you would get:

My glasses are for working on the computer/reading. The only time I walk around anywhere with glasses on, is when I've just forgotten to take them off. This happened often when I use to work outside of my house. I'd catch myself in the mirror with the glasses, and it would be all " Oh, hai!! Glasses!" The one thing that does tip me off to wearing them unnecessarily is eating. Eating with my glasses on makes me straight up sick.

Anyway...I didn't need new glasses, since my prescription didn't change, but I've had my current pair for more than two years, and I was bored. I ordered 3 new pairs of glasses from Zenni. Not necessary, but fun. I am please with 2 of the 3 I got.

First, my regular BCBG Max Azria glasses that I paid a ton of money for over 2 years ago. Purple.

Next, Zenni glasses in green. The picture doesn't do them justice, but they are my favorite

Now, Zenni glasses in blue argyle. Different, but good:

Finally, these. They don't look right:

I think it's because they are supposed to be worn like this:

In all, I would give Zenni high ratings! I spent less than $30 for all 3 pairs of glasses. And now I can keep a pair in my office, a pair in my purse, and a pair upstairs for reading. I win!

Thursday, January 19, 2012


• Lucy, Olivia and I have our big girls’ night on Saturday. It’s actually going to be a whole girls’ day, since we will be seeing Disney on Ice in the morning and having lunch with cousins afterward. From there I am hoping that Liv will take a nap and then we will go to do girly shopping. They each have a gift card for one of those little girl spas, so we may use that. There will be no Build a Bear this year, that is for sure. If you are unfamiliar with Girls’ Night, Bud, Hub and my brother are heading to Toronto for Monster trucks and since it is such a big deal, the girls and I always do something special.
• Now there is the issue of navigating the mall with Olivia. You may have heard me say this before, but I’m going to say it again. Liv is terrible. She has a mind of her own. She also has no fear. If I turn my head for one second, she will be hanging from a balcony, or running up the down escalator. I think I need to rent a stroller. Ours in on the rafters of the garage, and I know Hub isn’t about to get it down.
• Part of the reason we are even going to the mall is because Liv has had a major growth spurt, and her 3t clothes which already were just covering her belly and ankles are way too small. Guess which size Lucy skipped almost completely? If you guessed 4T/4, you are correct. So I am hoping to score some winterish clothes on deep clearance.
• Yesterday I was approached by the SVP of the group I am currently loaned to at work, and asked whether I would consider staying on with him at the end of the project. He’s not sure if it will be allowed, but wanted to know if I was interested before he pursued it—my 12 years of experience is invaluable, he says. I think I am interested. These people, this team…they make twice as much money as I do. Most of them have MBAs. I do not. I wonder if they pay for experience though? Unfortunately, our conversation was cut short. But between this, and my new side gig…2012 might be a very good year.
• I started reading on the treadmill, and it really makes the time fly. In the last 10 days, I’ve read Divergent, The Hunger Games, and am more than half way through Catching Fire. I never knew that “Dystopian” was a genre, and if I had heard it described before, I’d have probably wrinkled my nose and said “not for me”. But now I am hooked. Hooked, I tell you! I can’t wait to read more.
• I worked out 4 times last week, and followed my points and drank a ton of water. I gained 2 pounds. I’m less disheartened than you would think though. I can only do what I can do, right?
• Speaking of working out, I did add that fitness blog I talked about. No pressure to read it, but it is attached to my profile if you are so inclined.

Friday, January 13, 2012

Friday Stuff; Questions Answered; Pay it Forward Winner

I am so glad that it is Friday and that we have a 3 day weekend! For some reason, this just seemed like a very long week to me. There is a wellness night planned at school this evening, but I am pretty sure that if the weather keeps up as it is, that it will be canceled. The bus was over 40 minutes late in picking the kids up this morning. Hub had my car and his trailer was hooked to the truck, so I couldn’t drive them. Instead we waited, waited and waited some more. Hub would have taken them when he got home at around 10 had the bus not shown up but thankfully it did, leaving Liv and me to play Dora and Pegasus (it was mostly her playing while I worked), until Hub got home to take her to pre-school.

I saw the eye doctor yesterday, and was pleased to find out that my vision is actually a little bit better since my last exam. No changes to my prescription, so even though it would be exciting to me, I did not spend any money on new glasses. I only wear them for computer work anyway, so it really would be a waste of money. I may order a few cheap pairs from Zenni though, just to change things up a bit.

Well, let’s get down to business, shall we? I had a pay it forward contest running for a week or so, and I got 9 entries. The In order to answer, you had to answer 4 questions, which I will answer now.

1. You are at a function with an open bar (think high end, not like a moose lodge or something). What do you order to drink? I always have a hard time knowing what to order. Usually, it’s either a glass of Chardonnay or Riesling. If I’m out specifically for cocktails though, I usually get whatever the specialty flavored martini is.
2. What is your favorite thing to eat for breakfast—as in if you could have it any time with no consequences, what would it be? What is your usual breakfast? I think my favorite would be a tie between French toast/waffle coated in butter and loaded with powdered sugar so that it makes like a buttery sugary paste (French toast and powdered sugar was my special childhood breakfast made by my dad and is a point of contention between Hub and me because he thinks it is disgusting and not healthy, and I say that powdered sugar is actually better for you than the old Aunt Jemima) , OR a sausage biscuit from McDonalds. No egg or cheese, just sausage. My usual breakfast is either a bowl of reduced sugar oatmeal, or a wheat bagel and a shit ton of coffee.
3. Who does the laundry in your house, and how often does it get done? We do laundry every Monday and Wednesday, and if necessary on Saturday. I wash and dry during the day, and the kids sort all of it and fold their own clothes in the evening. Lucy does Olivia’s clothes, and Olivia does towels and wash cloths. Hub and I each do our own folding and putting away.
4. Do you enjoy chewing gum? I am a hardcore gum chewer. My brand of choice right now is Stride and whatever the green and blue mint flavors are. I chew it with reckless abandon and I am a snapper. Hub jokes that the reason I work from home now is because people in the office were tired of hearing me chew.

And now for the moment you have all been waiting for! The winner of my pay it forward contest is:

Tess! Actually, the first winner was Swistle, but she excused herself from the contest, so it is Tessie’s lucky day! I will be emailing you Tess! Consider yourself WARNED.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Elaborating on the excitement

Something very exciting happened to me this weekend. If you follow me on Twitter, you probably know some of it anyway. I can’t give you all of the details yet, but I will tell you what I can.

Saturday while I was cleaning the house for Bud’s birthday party, I picked up my phone to check email (or come up with whatever stall tactic I could) and saw a note from the company that I consign with twice a year. They were looking for someone to blog for them and help them to expand their brand. I thought about it for all of 20 seconds before I came downstairs to use the actual computer (that never happens; I always email from my phone) to email them back with what my qualifications are, and what I think I can bring to the table.

Within hours I heard back from them and was made a member of their team. The compensation is small…this could never replace my job or anything, but it is compensation. I am really excited about it! At this time, I’ve decided not to share my personal blog with them, or anyone who may be reading what I have to say over there. Maybe that will change in the future, but I’m not sure that I am committed to removing content and making edits over here that would change the sort of image that I have of myself as a blogger. I like who I am over here. In fact, I changed my “About Me” a little bit. Maybe you could take a look and tell me what you think of it.

In the meantime, I’ll be figuring out what I’d like to say in my bio, and trying to get a good headshot of myself. I…may need someone to do some Photoshopping for me. Or not. We’ll see. Does Photoshop shave off chins?

I’ll let you know when I am up and running at the new place, and hopefully you’ll visit.

Friday, January 6, 2012

Paying it Forward-- You could be a WINNER

A couple of months ago, I can’t remember exactly when, I won a Pay it Forward contest over at Mama Bub’s blog. Her package arrived in early December with an array of goodies that I neglected to take pictures of, but there was an owl ornament, a mug, chocolates and a very nice black and white striped scarf and pair of gloves that I have worn almost every time I’ve gone out since. It was, in my opinion, the perfect assortment.

Now it is my turn. Christmas is over, and early January is one of my very favorite shopping times. We purchased all of Bud’s birthday gifts while Christmas shopping. I’ve refrained from participating in this round of the CDP exchange, and I am itching to just buy some stuff for someone already. I already have a few things tucked away, but I always like to tailor my packages to the winner.

So here it is, my January 2012 pay it forward contest. By entering, you agree to host a contest of your own at some point down the road. And in order to enter, I ask that you answer the following random sampling of questions, because I love questions and answers.

1. You are at a function with an open bar (think high end, not like a moose lodge or something). What do you order to drink?
2. What is your favorite thing to eat for breakfast—as in if you could have it any time with no consequences, what would it be? What is your usual breakfast?
3. Who does the laundry in your house, and how often does it get done?
4. Do you enjoy chewing gum?

OK! Today is Friday, and I will leave this contest open until next Friday, January 13 at 10AM EST. At that point I will draw a random winner, answer my own questions, and we will move on from there. So get moving and answer my questions! It will be fun! Plus you might win something! Yay!

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

2012 Resolve

So yes, here we have it. The big resolution post. I actually only have a few resolutions, then I have a challenge, and then I have something of a 2012 bucket list. Things that I really want to do. Or things that I have convinced myself that I want to do, and will decide were a very bad idea later. We shall see. Anyway, I mentioned yesterday that I am not starting my new year until January 9th, so that’s when all of this will be in full swing. I am trying to make good choices in the meantime though, with try being the operative word. I joined Weight Watchers online yesterday, and officially began tracking points today. Tomorrow I will likely go to the gym. The little things, right.

So without further ado, here are my resolutions:

1. Drink more water: Like last year, this is not about drinking other things instead of water (although my coffee consumption could maybe decrease a bit). It is about remembering to drink water even when I am not thirsty. I’d like to install a water cooler in my office, but that isn’t going to happen, so the plan is to fill my 2 20oz bottles in the morning and bring them in to the office with me. I should finish those at the very least. Combined with the water I already drink at dinner, plus water when working out, I think I will be good to go. My goal is to drink 60oz of water each day.
2. Stay up to date on appointments: this includes my blood work, kids’ checkups and things of that nature. I am the biggest procrastinator and we all end up being behind because of it.
3. Make and stick to a weekly meal plan: I’m tired of running out to the store every day when we figure out just what it is we will be having for dinner. I want to get back in to cooking on my lunch break or crock potting so we are eating early instead of at 7PM, and having ingredients on hand to make things easier.
4. Be a better friend: Don’t misunderstand me here, I haven’t been malicious to anyone or anything, but it occurred to me recently that I have put no effort in to any of my friendships, especially with some of my oldest friends, for quite some time. I will make the first move. I will call and send notes. I will try and set up gatherings. I feel like I am losing people, and I am pretty sure that it is my fault.
5. Exercise for 30 minutes a day: It doesn’t have to be in the gym, or in a Zumba class. It can be a walk with the dog or fooling around with the kids. 30 minutes, even split out in to 2 15 minute chunks is doable.

And there you have it. 2012 resolutions. Now for my challenge. Since Lucy was born I have had chronic acid reflux. In addition to the fact that my esophagus is damaged, there are contributing factors that exacerbate my condition, and make it impossible for me to heal. I would like to be off of the meds once and for all. Weight loss will help immensely. In addition, I’ve sort of made a list of my triggers—the surefire things that are going to give me an attack regardless of whether or not I’ve taken the medication. They are: Heavy dairy products—think cheesecake, ice cream and cream based sauces, chocolate, and fried foods. What I would like to work out is a period of time…I don’t know if it is 30, 60 or 90 days…whatever where I eliminate all of these foods from my diet, and try to wean myself off of the nightly does of Zantac. I don’t know if it will work, but I am going to try it.

Finally, here is the list of things I would like to accomplish in 2012, hereafter known as Saly’s 2012 Bucket List

• Complete C25K
• At least consider running a 5k
• Redesign my blog and the header
• Add a second blog to talk about my fitness, weight loss and eating
• Start that coffee blog I keep talking about
• Take a weekend trip without Hub or the kids
• Take Lucy to the hobby shop and let her pick out whatever she wants
• Make a scrapbook with Lucy
• Start building the doll house that Hub bought me in 1999
• Take Liv on her own girls’ night…no sisters allowed
• Buy some cute earrings and actually wear them
• Curl my hair
• Have my eyebrows threaded
• Dabble in making my own cards WITHOUT the help and templates of an instructor
• Have at least 4 Bud and Mom dates
• Do something fun with my hair (spunky color or a feather etc.)
• Wear makeup when leaving the house at least 10 times
• Take my mother out to lunch
• Go sledding—and not be a worrywart the whole time
• Take the kids to the beach, even if Hub won’t go.
• Take Liv to the bounce place
• Camp with the kids in the back yard
• Tile the backsplash in the kitchen
• Let each kid help me cook when they ask
• Get a monthly pedicure when the weather warms up
• Figure out how to get all of our old photos scanned for a reasonable price, and actually do it
• Have a kick ass 10th wedding anniversary
• Do an overnight trip with my mom and the girls
• Make my own laundry detergent
• Send cards to people, just because
• Tell my parents and my brothers that I love them (we are not touchy feely emotion type people)
• Get on board with Hub’s plan to write a will and plan our burial (blech blech blech hate this one)
• Take more pictures
• Read more books
• Ask Hub’s grandma to teach me how to knit, and follow through on it

I may add to this list, but this is what I’ve had on my mind and on scrap paper for the last few weeks. Ambitious, I think. I’m going to add it to my sidebar and cross things off as they come. I hope you will wish me luck in my endeavors this year. I certainly wish you the best of luck in yours.

Happy New Year!

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

2011 Recap (aka Sadder, Fatter, Richer)

Is this the longest survey ever, or is it just me? I had planned on completing it last week, but then all 3 kids came down with strep throat, which as you can imagine was an awesome time. Still, better than the barf fest that was Christmas 2009, so I am ok. I like this meme though, especially when it’s posted on blogs I am somewhat new to, because it’s a good way to catch up.

1. What did you do in 2011 that you’d never done before?
Worked from home full time. Put my feet in the Pacific Ocean. Spent a week in California for work and got to see many sites. Took up card making. Took up Zumba. Completed NaBloPoMo. Adopted a pain in the ass dog.
2. Did you keep your new year’s resolutions, and will you make more for next year?
I did so well for the first half of the year with my fitness related resolutions. But then FIL died and our whole life changed and I fell off the wagon in a major way. Fitnessy resolutions=epic fail. What else did I resolve? Let’s see:
Make a Consistent Effort to Work Out: Yes in the beginning of the year, and I stuck to my 1x weekly Zumba at the end. In the middle? Not so much.
Drink Water: So so on this one. I don’t know how to remind myself to drink when I am not even thirsty. I can go entire meals without a beverage. This is touch.
Count Calories: Ha. Hahaaaa. No. though I do have an app for it.
Cook More from Scratch: Yes to this one. We still had our fair share of hamburger helper (I like to call it hamby helpy, and it annoys just about everyone in this house) and TV dinners, but I also made many things all by myself with no box.
Tell Hub When I Need Alone Time: I think so. I had quite a few nights out this past year, and you might not believe it, but spending 6 nights alone in a hotel room does wonders for the woman who is craving alone time.
Spend More One on One time with Each of the Kids: So so on this one too. Bud and I had one date in 2011 where we played mini golf and went to Build a Bear, just us. The girls with girls boys with boys dynamic happened much more often.
I do have some resolutions for this year, but they will get their own post. I’m not starting my New Year officially until this coming Sunday because today is my official first day back to work, thank you New Year’s Day (observed) bank holiday, and Bud’s birthday is Saturday, making that our last official holiday function of the year. So, my First Monday is going to be 1/9 this year. What with that extra day in February, I think it is ok.
3. Did anyone close to you give birth?
2 cousins.
4. Did anyone close to you die?
Only our live-in 3rd parent/pair of hands. It has been nearly 7 months, and I still cannot believe FIL is gone. It is still unfathomable to me that he is not upstairs right now. I know he’s not, obviously. And yet…I don’t believe it.

5. What countries did you visit?
None. My license expires this year so at the very least I will get the enhanced license so I can travel to Canada.
6. What would you like to have in 2012 that you lacked in 2011?
Motivation. Willpower. A hot tub.
7. What dates from 2011 will remain etched upon your memory, and why?
May 14th, the day FIL died. I still remember the feeling of needing to sit down, lest I collapse the second Hub told me, and rushing the kids out of the house so they were gone before the police arrived. I remember changing from my pajamas in the McDonalds bathroom, and trying to keep it together so that the kids wouldn’t know anything was up, and sitting through gymnastics staring ahead at the wall wondering just what the hell we were going to do. It was probably the worst day of my life.
8. What was your biggest achievement of the year?
Managing to stay employed and meet without the confines of a regular office.
9. What was your biggest failure?
Fitness and eating well. I don’t know why those are the easiest things to talk myself out of.
10. Did you suffer illness or injury?
Nope. I think my answer has been no for several years now. Which means I am due.
11. What was the best thing you bought?
The weekend away in wine country with Hub (and several bottles of wine), and we put a deposit down on a hot tub but that will be a 2012 purchase.
12. Whose behavior merited celebration?
Again, Hub’s. There have been some really rough and dark days (Father’s day, anyone?) but he has been so strong and so great to the kids.
13. Whose behavior made you appalled and depressed?
If anyone would tell me exactly what was going on, I am sure I would say my soon to be ex-SIL.
14. Where did most of your money go?
Mortgage. Cars. Groceries.
15. What did you get really, really, really excited about?
Our Cedar Point trip.
16. What song will always remind you of 2011?
No idea.
17. Compared to this time last year, are you:
a) happier or sadder? Sadder.
b) thinner or fatter? Fatter.
c) richer or poorer? Richer.
18. What do you wish you’d done more of?
Exercising. Spending time playing games with the kids.
19. What do you wish you’d done less of?
Eating junk. Yelling, omg, the yelling.
20. How did you spend Christmas?
In the usual way: Christmas Eve with Hub’s Family and we had my family here for Christmas brunch. We stopped at my uncle’s in the evening.
21. Did you fall in love in 2011?
No, I don’t really think so.
22. What was your favorite TV program?
The USA Network really has a hold on me: Psych, Suits, White Collar. Also, Breaking Bad, Modern Family and Raising Hope.
23. Do you hate anyone now that you didn’t hate this time last year?
24. What was the best book you read?
I really enjoyed The Help.
25. What was your greatest musical discovery?
None, really.
26. What did you want and get?
A composter.
27. What did you want and not get?
New furniture. That is definitely on my list for 2012.
28. What was your favorite film of this year?
Crazy, Stupid Love. Hanna. Our Idiot Brother. The Muppets.
29. What did you do on your birthday, and how old were you?
I turned 33. We dropped the kids off with my parents and had dinner and cheesecake. We left in the morning for our weekend away.
30. What one thing would have made your year immeasurably more satisfying?
I’m not really sure.
31. How would you describe your personal fashion concept in 2011?
2011 could easily be described as “The Year I Didn’t Get Dressed”.
32. What kept you sane?
My Blog, The Twitters, Regular Girls’ Nights Out
33. Which celebrity/public figure did you fancy the most?
Howard Stern. Robert Downey Jr. Ryan Gosling (um, his abs. His face not so much.)
34. What political issue stirred you the most?
There were a couple local things, purchasing land near our local high school for a safer driveway etc. Nationally-Healthcare.
35. Who did you miss?
FIL. A lot. More I think because the kids have missed him so much.
36. Who was the best new person you met?
I don’t think I met anyone new this year.
37. Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned in 2011.
Sometimes you just need to suck it up and get things done.
38. Quote a song lyric that sums up your year.