Friday, June 25, 2010

What Are You Drinking??

Hello everyone :)  I hope you all had a good Friday.  Mine is a REALLY good one, because not only do I not work at Target tonight, I don't need to go in tomorrow till 4!!  So it truly feels like a "Friday" to me, and not just another day.  I did of course work at my full time job today, and it went by fairly quickly.  I didn't have a lot of my own work to do, so I spent the day helping my boss with his grunt work.  I don't ever really want to be a manager, too much busy work, spreadsheets, and nonsense to do all day.
My older readers know that I started this position at my full time job back in January.  Before then, I had a position with the business-part of my company, with a small, close-knit team.  I worked with them for 2.5 years, and they were all pretty used to the stuff I ate, and were curious, and sometimes wanted to try it.  My new team, now on the IT side of the building, is a much bigger team, less close, and looks at me sometimes like I have 2 heads for what I bring in to eat.

Case in point...

                                          (Sorry for the dirty stove, I promise it's clean now lol.)

I have one of these most mornings of the week.  A much larger version, it usually fills a travel mug, and has some variety of fruit, powders, and spinach or kale.  I have been in my department now for 6 months, and people are finally letting their curiosity get the better of them, so I have been recently asked by a lot of people.. "What on earth are you drinking?"  I think it's hilarious.  I always ask if they just noticed that I bring this in all the time, and they usually say no, they have noticed for a while, but never wanted to ask.  I tell them, they usually get a grossed out look, smile politely, and walk away surely thinking, she's crazy.  I have posted about green smoothies before, I started drinking them during my raw experiment and never looked back.  I really like them a lot.  Mine usually contain some combination of the following: banana, strawberries, blueberries, mango, kiwi, spinach, kale, hemp protein powder, maca powder, raw chocolate powder, peanut butter, vanilla extract... one time I even put canned pumpkin in, added cinnamon and nutmeg, and it was pretty decent.  I have had them with all those fruits at once, and some with just spinach, banana, peanut butter and water.  I drink them because I really dislike cooked spinach, and I will put way more greens into a smoothie than I will into a salad.  Plus, who wouldn't want to get most of their veggie servings out of the way in the morning, and have it all taste like fruit? 
Sadly, this morning I had oatmeal.  Plain Jane, I know.  I jazzed it up with a half pint of blueberries and some cottage cheese, but then I realized tonight that I didn't get any greens today.  So..

This would be salad with spinach, kale, an apple, and some grated cheddar cheese, all drizzled with Annie's Goddess dressing.  Usually I like my salads with a lot more "stuff," but its so hot and I'm not all that hungry.  Plus, I made more guacamole and its chillin in the fridge, so I need room for that later!
Anyway, I am off to watch some Bethany Getting Married.. Lord knows I love me some Real Housewives and anything Housewives-related!  Tomorrow I am thinking I may wake up early to beat the heat for a run, and then off to the pool before work.  I hope everyone has a great Saturday!

Thursday, June 24, 2010

More Shiny New Things

I finally went yesterday and got new running shoes.  FINALLY.  It was quite the experience, since you all know I am pretty new to running and my sneaker-shopping in the past has consisted of me picking out the cutest pair and taking them home.  Oh no my friends... this is not the case at a running store.  I went to Fleet Feet in Raleigh with my friend Lindsay, because the runners I know highly recommend the store.  An hour later, I walked out of the store with those Saucony running shoes, 2 pairs of running socks, and one pair of compression socks.  You read that right.  AN HOUR.  I'm not complaining, because they did a fantastic job, but they measure your feet sitting.  Then standing.  Then you sit again, they mark something with a pen, you stand, they mark it again, and they measure the distance.  (This is to see how much your arch collapses, apparently.)  They watch you walk.  They go to the back and bring out 4-5 pairs of shoes.  You put them on, go outside, and they watch you RUN.  In every single pair.  I am more than confident after all that, that I got the right pair for me.  It was exhausting, but worth it.  And the compression socks that I bought for, ahem, $60?  Worth every penny.  I took it all out for a little test last night, and brought Molly for a walk around the complex.  The shoes are making all the difference, and the socks are divine.  I am SO wearing them to Target later.
The new shoes are going to make it really hard to come up with an excuse not to go running.  Other than the oppressive and overwhelming heat, there honestly IS no excuse.  I need to get up and go, end of story.  I'm excited though, because now I see just how bad my last shoes were, and I think it will make the whole experience much better.  Oh yeah, and that heat I just mentioned?  The high today is going to be in the triple digits.  My county has a heat advisory AND an air quality advisory.  Tomorrow's high, in the 90's, is being referred too as a "cold front" on the news.  I've been here for 3 years now, so I should be used to this, but a cold front in Upstate NY is usually something in the 20's or colder.  Not the 90's.  But I have my sweaters ready just in case...

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Guacamole and Smoothie Pics From Yesterday

The New Processor :)

Guac Ingredients

Blurry pic of finished guac

Dessert! :)

Monday, June 21, 2010

Oh Yes, The Girl CAN Cook..

Don't you hate how everything in the house seems to run out at the same time?  This happened to me this week, so on my shopping trip today I not only needed the regular stuff, but also dog food, cat food, hairspray, and something new I have been wanting to try- Xanthum gum.  Hairspray was $20, dog food + cat food was $20, and the Xanthum was $12.  I also wanted Chia Seeds, but since those ALSO cost $20, they will have to wait.  Not to mention the $25 food processor I just bought, but already love.

And speaking of that, guess what I made tonight?  GUACAMOLE!!!  (I apologize for lack of pictures because I actually took some, but I can't get them to download.  After speaking with my techie friend tomorrow, I will post them for y'all.)  Anyway, contrary to the post title, I did not actually cook anything, but I made guacamole.  And it turned out fabulous.  I tried making it before, but I sort of mashed it all together in a bowl and even after it sat in the fridge, it still tasted like separate flavors.  Guac-fail.  The processor made it all come to life!

I got the recipe a long time ago from, so that's about all the credit I can give to it, but here it is:
Two avocado's
One roma tomato (but I wished I had used two)
3 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
Half cup of onion
Juice from one lime
Sea Salt

I blended the avocade first, and then gradually added the rest till it was all creamy, and let it sit in the fridge for about an hour.  After sitting, even J liked it.  And he has never eaten guacamole since I have known him, claiming he hates it.  (For the record, J claims this about a lot of stuff he has never tried.. and then he tries it... and likes it.)  I had a few chips loaded with the guac, and set it back.  It will definitely be making an appearance in my lunch tomorrow.

It was BLAZING hot today in NC.  The weather is showing temps of solid 97 all through the week, with no sign of letting up.  The heat actually makes me lose my appetite, so I didn't eat dinner tonight.  I did want to use my new Xanthum gum though, so I blended up a smoothie with banana and strawberry, and two teaspoons of the gum, but it was only meh.  I think I used too much, and it took the flavor of the fruit away.  I will need to experiment with it to make everything just right. 

What else, what else... my news that I have been teasing you with should be out, one way or the other, by the end of the week.  So everyone still cross your fingers!  I won a raffle at work today, and got an organic tshirt from Sunchips.  Random, I know.  Oh, and my parents told me today that they are sending me money for a new pair of running shoes!!  Hooray!!  That will be my incentive to get back in the game.  I haven't run since the shooting, because I have been nervous that it would release a ton of emotions and I would be stranded on the side of the road crying, but I think I'm ready to get back in the game.  I kind of want to run the Virginia Rock N Roll marathon 2 Septembers from now, and seeing as I can only run a half mile before needing to walk, I need to get on some training ASAP.

That's all for tonight.  Have a great night, and I hope to have some pictures of my masterpiece up for your viewing pleasure tomorrow :)

Saturday, June 19, 2010


I feel like I have officially joined the land of the "real" food bloggers.  Ladies and gentlemen, yesterday I bought my very first food processor!!!  I cannot tell you how excited I am to now be able to make all those elusive recipes that I see other bloggers making, only to be restricted by my lack of said processor.  I can finally make guacamole!  I can make Angela's banana soft serve.  I can make a crapload of stuff from Julie, and Avery.  Possibilities are endless.  Do you have a food processor recipe you want to give me??  Because I can't wait to break in the bad boy!!
I had the work schedule from hell this weekend.  Starting Friday at 7am, I worked 24 hours out of the following 32.  NIGHTMARE.  I am currently laying in bed with the laptop, trying to avoid walking because my feet hurt so bad.  And in case you thought maybe I would get a break, well, you would be wrong.  Up and at it again tomorrow for a lovely 8 hour shift at Target.  I was dreading this weekend all week long, and I am probably the only person on the planet who can't wait for Monday.  I work at Target only 20 hours next week... tomorrow being 8 of those hours.  I just need to get through tomorrow..
I am also not ashamed to admit that the majority of my dinner tonight was a DQ blizzard.  Its so damn HOT in NC lately, temps right around 100 for the past week and forecasted for all next week.  I had no plans for this when I left work today, but all of a sudden I had a craving and had to get it.  It was ah-mazing.  For someone who usually has food guilt, I have no regrets.  Because it was PERFECT.
I am debating taking Molly for a walk later tonight, after it cools down.  It depends on how my feet feel.  My poor feet.. and yes, I wear good shoes.  Its the bad leg blood circulation that runs in my family, thanks to all the women on both sides.  For now, I am going to veg and read some blogs, watch some TV, and decide my walk later on.  Have a lovely Saturday night :)

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Cosmo Should Never Write About Health Again

I told you in the last post that there was an article that I read in this month's Cosmo that almost made me break out in hives.. it pissed me off THAT MUCH.  I'm not gonna lie, I do love Cosmo.  One would think I would have outgrown it by now, but no.  It definitely makes for some entertaining reading, right along with US Weekly and People.
The offender in this month's issue was an article called "Staying Healthy Just Got Easier."  It supposedly debunks 7 standard health rules, and replaces them with some really, really crappy advice.  I am only going to talk about the ones that truly bother me, but even still, there is no real way to make this a short post.  If I'm already boring you, stop now.

Here are the standard rules, the ones that they say no longer apply:

Rule One: "You Must Drink 8 Glasses Of Water A Day."  Now, I do agree that this is not for everyone.  Some people need more or less, depending on climate, activity level, etc.  And some drinks such as herbal tea, etc, can be a decent replacement for plain water.  But the article doesn't expand on this at all.  In fact, a quote is used by a women's health specialist who says, "As long as you are drinking water or other beverages throughout the day, just use your thirst as a general guide."  So many things wrong with this sentence... first of all, what kind of beverages?  Does soda count?  Hawaiian Punch?  So I can drink 8 Dr Peppers a day and get the same benefits as 8 glasses of water a day?  Um... I think not.  And as far as using your thirst for a guide, in a perfect world, people wouldn't get super thirsty all the time.  It's the first sign of dehydration.  You should be drinking BEFORE you get thirsty.
Rule Two: "You Have To Work Out For An Hour Daily" While I think every little bit counts, every single article (NOT in Cosmo,) that I have read states this as a fact.  On most days, people should get 30-60 minutes of a sweaty workout.  Do we all do this?  No.  But SHOULD we?  Yes.  This is possibly the most infuriating one of all to me, because it pretty much says point blank, that when you add up activities such as running errands, walking up the stairs, and cleaning, you get more than half your weekly workout.  Oh really??  There is an actual chart at the bottom of the page that shows that in a day, if you have sex for 10 minutes, run errands for 10 minutes, and clean for 10 minutes, you have met your exercise quota for the day.  I want to slap whoever wrote that out.  Let me say this... I work two jobs, one of which is standing for anywhere from 4-8 hours at a time.  I am constantly walking back and forth up and down the front end.  I do all the grocery shopping, I live on the 3rd floor, and I occasionally clean my house.  I also live with my boyfriend, and well, let's leave it at that.  I still manage to be 20 pounds overweight.  But I guess the 20 minute stroll with Molly, the 2 hikes up and down 3 flights of stairs, and loading my dishwasher tonight was enough. 
Rule Five:  "You Need Tons Of Fruits And Veggies To Meet The Requirements"  Well, no.  Not a ton.  But they are the best foods for you, hands down, and should make up a good percentage of what is eaten in a day.  Its more the advice afterward that bothers me.  Its the paragraph that says, "They count toward your fruit and veggie requirements even if they're dipped in chocolate, battered in tempura, pureed in sauces or soups, or piled on top of a pizza."  According to the geniuses at Cosmo, I can eat chocolate dipped fruit, deep fried veggies, and pizza by the gallon as long as it's the veggie option.  Seriously? 
There was another rule about sleep that I'm not even going to bother with.  This post is long enough already, but you get the gist of the article.  I really hope it was written by a third grader, (although I also hope a third grader doesn't consider sex a form of exercise.)  I am so let down by this entire thing.  In the age where cancer, diabetes and heart disease are running rampant through our society, at a time when obesity levels in adults AND children are hitting an all time record high, at a time when we really need to all be making some serious decisions about our health and well being... THIS is the crap people are going to read??  Not everyone is educated about food, and health, and exercise, and how to lead a healthy lifestyle.  So it breaks my heart to think that some girl is going to open this magazine, come to this article and read about how running errands and topping her pizza with veggies and washing it all down with a soda is okay.  She is going to think that as long as she cleans her house and goes grocery shopping, this is enough exercise for the day.  Wow Cosmo, way to contribute to the already serious health issues of America.  I suggest a little more research next time. 

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

A Little Of This And That

Hello everyone!  I am trying really hard to get things back to normal around here.  I am slowly feeling my mood improve as the days go by, and I am considering taking Target up on their offer of 3 free counseling sessions to get a little more of a boost out of this mood.  We will see.  Anyway, I have a post in mind that I want to do, bashing a Cosmo article that I recently read, but since I don't have it in front of me I will do it later.  (Disclaimer:  I usually love Cosmo as mindless reading, but this article really struck a nerve.  You will see..)  So, I have some random info to share today.

  • I finally got a Twitter account.  I always made fun of Twitter, but then saw that it was one more thing I can link my blog too, so I sucked it up and did it.  It's on my sidebar, so follow if you want!  I'm still figuring it out, like my picture for example... how annoying that it needs to be a certain size.  I have like 7 pictures out of a million that are small enough.
  • Last week I came home to see a huge section of the yard right next to my building that is marked off with caution tape and stakes.  I was curious what they could be building there, so I went into the office and asked.  Worst case scenario ensued... they are building a DOG PARK.  Right under my window.  If you remember, Molly HATES dogs.  We have a pet station in that yard, and she freaks out if a dog goes there, barking and going crazy till they leave.  Can you imagine the chaos if there is an entire DOG PARK under the window?  J works nights and sleeps during the day.  I know you see how this can be bad.  We may seriously need to switch apartments, because I know damn well we wouldn't have chosen that particular one if the park had been there when we moved in.
  • I went out with friends to see SATC2 on Saturday.  By the way, Saturday was a great day.  I had it off from Target, and I laid in the sun all afternoon.  When I went down to the pool, two girls called me over to hang out because they were trying to start a party.  One was really tan, and I pointed it out and said I was jealous.  She said, "Well, you are really skinny and able to wear that string bikini, so we're even."  Um yeah.  Friends for life now, she called me skinny.
  • Oh yeah, SATC2.  It was very cute and hilarious.  Not as good as the first one, in my opinion, but it was still a fun movie.  And I'm not sure if they were actually filming in the Middle East, but wow.... wherever they were filming was beautiful, and I want to go there.
  • I still don't have an update on the good news that I said I may have in my last post.  It might be a couple of weeks, or not at all.  But I didn't forget, and I will definitely follow up if/when it happens :)
So that's all for this morning.  I want to thank you all again for your awesome support during the past few weeks.  I love all my blog friends!!  Have a great day :)

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

I'm Still Here

I have been a little MIA lately.  I feel like ever since last week, all my regular habits have gone out the window.  I'm not exercising, I'm not eating very well, I'm not blogging... I'm pretty much going to work, coming home, taking naps because since I don't sleep well at night, I am SOO tired all the time, watching mindless TV and zoning out.  I need to get out of this funk.  I started slowly getting back to eating like normal.  I'm not there yet completely, but I'm trying.  I would swear that I've gained 10 pounds in this week and two days since the shooting, although I can't be sure since I stopped weighing myself a couple of months ago.  I think I look more puffy in the face, and my jeans are a little tighter.  I work at Target the rest of the week till Saturday, so my goal for myself for Saturday is to go for a run.  Molly will be happy, she has been on my final nerve for the past few days and I think it's pent up energy.  I have taken her for a couple of walks but I don't think it's enough for her.  Hopefully she can calm down till then.  Other Saturday plans include laying by the pool, and maybe SATC2 with some friends.  J will be gone that day, he is in a wedding.  I am not going because honestly, I just don't feel up to partying and dancing and all that.  A relaxing day in the sunshine sounds a lot more appealing.
I"m hoping that if I can get back into running at least a couple times a week, my mood will start to improve.  I haven't gone because I seriously worried that it would release emotions and I would end up all upset on the side of the road, but I think I will be ok now.  I have dealt with depression before, and I can feel myself slipping into it and I have to do something about it now before it gets worse.  It's been 4 years since my bout with it, and I have no desire to revisit those feelings.  I don't want to be on meds, I don't want to NOT smile and laugh and have a good time.  I get in bad moods like any other person, but they usually go away after a day or so.  I know this is a different situation, but I don't want to let it have lasting effects. 
To try to end on a good note, I got some news today that has the potential to become GREAT news.  I don't want to share it right now because I don't want to jinx it, or talk about it and then have to explain that it didn't happen, but I pray, pray, pray that all works out.  I will update you all when I know what's going on!
Oh yes, and thanks so much for all the support from you all.  It has definitely been one of the worst times of my life, and I so appreciate all the nice comments from everyone.  I have some really great readers :)

Thursday, June 3, 2010

The Aftermath

This week since Sunday has been a long week, but at the same time it has been a blur.  Tuesday was the only day I went to work so far.  (Monday I was already off due to Memorial Day.)  Tuesday I was ok, I went to the full time job and to Target afterwards.  The entire mood at my store has changed, I don't really know how to describe it other than to say it's more somber.  There were three coworkers who were having a hard time so I spent my evening comforting them, talking to others, and working.. in that order.  It's fine though, the store has been really slow and there are people from other stores working so that we can all be free to speak with grief counselors, talk to each other, etc.  For all the shit I like to talk about Target, I really have to commend them for how they are handling this whole situation.  No one has to work if they don't want to come in.  You can leave early.  You can come in and wander around and do nothing.  There has been catered food in the break room all week long.  And like I said, other Target employees from other stores have been amazing, coming in and taking over so we can do our thing.  There is also extra security, including an armed police officer.  Although I know the odds of another shooting are slim, it's still a major comfort to see the officer walking the front.
Anyway.. back to Tuesday.  I came home after my short 4.5 hour shift totally exhausted and worn out.  I went to bed.  I woke up from a nightmare that I didn't remember with tears running down my face, my eyes all puffy and sticky, and decided I needed a day off.  All day on Monday, I got, "Were you there?  Did you know her?  How horrible.."  And then some questions I didn't want to be asked, "How many times was she shot?  Where was she shot?"  I was not in the mood, and already totally shaken up from my dream.  I called into both places and went back to bed till noon.  Spent the rest of the day alternately sleeping and watching TV.
Today was the funeral.  It was primarily in Spanish, but it didn't matter, I knew the deal.  The eulogy was in English, and the family in utter despair.  I have never been to such an emotional funeral, where the sister was screaming in the aisle and in such hysterics she couldn't even stand up on her own.  It was horrible.  I'm also pretty sure that it is a Catholic tradition to have an open casket, and hers was closed.  Just a stark reminder of what had happened.
Target had a little reception afterward with food, and we went and were all together and talked.  It was good that they did that, so that the memorial ended on a slight up note, because directly following the service when we were all standing in the parking lot, most of us were crying and hugging.  We left Target with dry eyes and some laughs, which we all really needed.
I came home and took a nap, and woke up still tired.  After some thinking, I called in to the full time job for tomorrow.  I think I would be pretty useless, and I need to try to get over this slight depression that I'm feeling.  It's a weird feeling, not like I will burst out crying any moment, but more like a depression, where I don't want to talk to anyone about anything and I don't want to be around anybody.  I have been telling myself all week to get up and exercise, but the most I have done is short walks with Molly.  Maybe I will try again tomorrow.  The plan is maybe a run, and then get out in the sun till I go in to Target.  I'm hoping that this weekend will ease some of these feelings, and I will be better by Monday.. at least able to not dread going to work, and being around everyone with all their questions.

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Comment Moderation

I just realized that since I changed my template, no one was able to leave comments.  At first I thought you all left me, but then I realized there must be a problem...and now it's fixed.  So if anyone wanted to leave anything, I apologize!