Monday, January 28, 2013

Hooray for Adaptive Sports

This past weekend was great for adaptive sports! Firstly, because I went up to Lincoln, New Hampshire for our bi-monthly adaptive skiing trip. (Wow, what a cold weekend! I had more layers than the younger brother from A Christmas Story. I'm happy to report that layers work. As do those little hand warmer and toe warmer things. So no frostbite here!)

The second, and bigger reason was the passing of a referendum by the US Department of Education on Friday, January 26th that holds requires public schools to provide equal alternative sporting options for students with disabilities. Reminiscent of  Title IX, which required public schools to provide equal opportunities for women in sports, this ruling would require schools to provide "reasonable accommodations" to students with disabilities or to create parallel programs. It does not require schools to change the nature of the game in order to accommodate disabled students, nor does it require coaches to guarantee a spot on a team for a disabled student. Rather, it seeks to eliminate situations where students are excluded from sports team because of a disability.

What does this mean practically? A reasonable accommodation may be supplying a flashing light or other visual cue in place of a starting gun for a deaf student on a track and field team. Eliminating exclusion may mean allowing a student in a wheelchair to play wheelchair tennis against their able bodies peers on the tennis team. (I've witnessed a few of these matches and they are AWESOME!)

Unfortunately, like everything else, there is a bit of confusion surrounding the issue and I spent a good portion of the weekend in good spirited debates with people who were fearful that this ruling would "ruin school athletic programs" by "funneling all the money away from the REAL athletes" to "Special Olympics". I understand there were similar protests to Title IX, arguing that equal athletic opportunities for women would virtually "eliminate football" and "confuse girls into believing they were boys." Um.....sure?

Naysayers can rest assured that the results of this new ruling will not produce situations like this:

(Anybody else see that episode? Where Artie called himself a "human battering ram?"

Rather it will produce more situations like this:

And hopefully, more situations like this:

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

January's Addictions


It's been a while since I did an addiction post. I miss em! They always seemed such fun.

This month, I was addicted to:

Nothing is better on a cold morning or a cold night than hot chocolatey goodness with mini-marshmallows floating inside.

I have to admit: I got a set of flannel sheets for my birthday a few years ago and I was like: "What an odd gift. Who the heck give somebody flannel sheets with snowmen on them for their birthday?" Oh, how wrong I was! They are absolutely fantastic and I can't live without them.

I totally did not get that show when it was on actual television. But since I have discovered the wonders of streaming old, defunct shows on Netflix, I have been exploring the shows that everyone else liked except me. And I have to say, I rather enjoyed the Allie McBeal thing this time around. Especially the Robert Downey Jr. episodes. I think Ol' Allie was the precursor to my second favorite show of all time: Scrubs.

I had the unfortunate luck of contracting a case of the creeping crud that was going around work during the holidays. And the only thing I could keep down was chicken soup. It's good stuff to eat while lying on the sofa watching back to back episodes of Allie McBeal.

I'm very partial to mocha protein powder and spinach this month.

The EMS down the street closed last week and had 50% off markdowns. Loaded up with socks (amongst other things)

Got her new book and in conjunction with Amanda's 30 day challenge, have been doing a little morning inspirations and journaling to put me in a bright, sunny mood! Aside from my imitation of Little Miss Cranky Pants yesterday, it seems to be working out quite well.

Rather late to the party, I finally downloaded his stuff on itunes. Like Dave Matthews and Mumford &
 Sons thrown in a blender (on high finger picking speed)

Monday, January 21, 2013

Lazy and Cold

Today I saw something that I in no way need, but I absolutely HAVE to have!

I was visiting a friend in the hospital (bad day) and the TV was tuned to the Weather Channel to determine exactly when I should hit the road to avoid the worst of the impending snow storm. When on the television screen appeared a commercial for the most wonderful item: the Forever Lazy.

It's kind of like the Extreme Snuggy. It is a gigantic thick fleece set of footie pajamas for adults. They used to advertise these on the TV at Christmastime in the 70's....they were called Cuddle Ups then. Now they are back with a different name. And I feel like I must  have one!

Why would anyone purposely buy such a ridiculous article of clothing? Why, for warmth, of course!

The thing is, my little yellow apartment by the beach has electric heat. Electric heat sucks. For one thing, it's expensive as all get out. I have a small 2 bedroom apartment and in the winter, my electric bill is higher than friends with four bedroom houses and 3 teenagers! 

Secondly, electric heat is not very effective. It gets fairly warm in here from around mid-thigh down, but not warm at all above that level.

So, in an effort to keep myself out of the poor house and keep warm, I spend my nights on the sofa, ensconced in a fleece throw. It works fairly well, except that my shoulders often get cold. And my back. And if I'm on the computer, my arms have to be outside of the blanket. You get the picture.

But in the ingenious Extreme Snuggy, (I've decided to call this item by that name from here on out, because it sounds a lot more hip and edgy than the Forever Lazy. Even though that may be actually closer to how I'd act when wearing the item). Again, in this ingenious article of clothing, I would be completely enveloped in warmth: my back, my shoulders, my arms, and even my feet thanks to the free fleece socks that come with it! 

Plus, if I had to go to the bathroom, it has a hand back flap! (ok, I would probably actually take the thing off, even I'm not that lazy!)

What I would not do, is wear it to a football game like the idiots in the commercial. Instead, I would put it on, set up a camera, and dance around to this:

I'd make a YouTube video of myself wearing this Extreme Snuggy and dancing to a one hit wonder song from the 90's, maybe even sticking my ass out of the back flap. The I would post it on YouTube and become a sensation. I'd totally end up on Ellen. Maybe I'd even wear the Forever Lazy on her show!

Of course, there was absolutely nothing I could do when I was sitting there in the hospital room, since I have a dumb phone, not a smart phone. (And by now, I'm thinking I would never order that thing off the internet) So I did the next best thing: on the way out, I bought some Girl Scout cookies from a little girl coming in to visit her grandpa. I'm eating them now. They are really tasty. And I'm wrapped up in a fleece throw, still pretty cold and forever lazy. 

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Lessons in Dehydration

There are some lessons you have to learn many times before they set in.

For me, the lesson is in dehydration.

You know that part of the Breakfast Club when Molly Ringwald goes: "I have a very low tolerance for dehydration." And Emilio Estevez counters with: "I've seen her dehydrate, sir. It's pretty gross." Yeah, that's me. But when I get dehydrated, it's not so much gross as cranky.

My biggest dehydration debacle was years ago when I was doing an Outward Bound in Canyonlands National Park. It was in the desert and at elevations of 4000 to 7000 feet. Enough to make a sea-level living girl like myself lose water like crazy. But when I started to cramp up, I settled that problem by taking ibuprofen. And when my stomach started cramping and I didn't feel like eating or drinking, well, I didn't. Did I mention I was carrying a 50 pound pack? On my 106 pound body?

Yeah, well, somewhere into day 5, I was hiking up out of a canyon with my fellow hikers, watching a pack of coyotes in the distance. I noticed a lone coyote that had separated from the pack and was coming quite close to us, checking us out in that skittish way that coyotes have. I said something about it to one of my trail mates who got excited and said "Coyote? Where?" Which was strange, since the coyote was about 10 feet away from us. It seemed strange that NOBODY in my group saw the coyote that was in clear sight, nor did they notice the entire pack which was a bit further away but still clearly visible. "Oh, I guess it ran away. It was just here" I said.

Shortly thereafter, I started hearing people calling out my name from the top of the canyon. Which was also strange, since we were essentially out in the middle of NOWHERE! By the time we made camp, I was swearing at people and crying and I yelled at my pack for being too heavy. (I'm sure everyone was super happy that I was along on this camping trip!) The trip leader walked up to me and said "How much water did you drink today?" I answered "Not enough. I think that's pretty F***ing clear, don't you think?" And then he made me drink 2 liters of water and eat ramen soup with extra salt.  Feeling much more like a human, I turned to everyone and said "About my behavior earlier...."

After an experience like that, you'd think that I'd be more astute about staying hydrated.

You would think.

But I've passed out on the beach, collapsed running bleachers, and cramped up during long runs.

And then there was last weekend.

I'm pretty sure I was dehydrated before I even left to go to New Hampshire. (New England winters and all with that super dry forced-air heat at work) Plus I was at 1000 to 3000 feet of elevation. Not Lake Tahoe, but enough to make a sea-level living girl like me lose water. And we were outside all day in the snow. And I didn't drink enough water. I don't think sitting in the hotel hot tub for 90 minutes helped matters any. Or the margarita at dinner.

Anyway, let's just say that Sunday was pretty rough. As I cruised back down to sea level, I consumed two big bottles of Sobe Lifewater and two big bottles of regular water. Plus a couple glasses before bed. I still woke up with a pounding headache on Monday morning.

Once you get behind that hydration curve, it's so hard to catch up. I think I finally caught up today. On Wednesday.

What can I say? I have a very low tolerance for dehydration.

And thank God for ibuprofen.

Monday, January 14, 2013

Life Lessons from Skiing

Last weekend marked the official beginning of our adaptive skiing program at Loon Mountain. Loon has a fantastic, well-established program and they are wonderful enough to let us tag along and learn. (we will be bringing up some clients as the winter progresses, as well)

One thing about me: I'm a mediocre skier. Most of the other people I go up with are accomplished skiers. They grew up near ski resorts. They were on ski teams or ski patrol or were ski instructors. I was not. I bring something different to the table: I am very good with positioning and neuro diagnoses. I'm just not a great skier. I just try to keep up.

In the lessons, we act as "blockers": ski behind the adaptive ski participant and make sure teenage snowboarders don't smash into them and scar them for life. (I can do that) But also: skiing next to a ski instructor all day makes for a day of not just blocking, but learning, as well! I do like to multi-task!

What makes this even more important, is that the better you ski yourself, the better you can instruct somebody else. Especially when you are dealing with the adaptive equipment. In other words, you need to be really adept at using your own equipment (skis) in order to teach somebody to use adaptive equipment, like a sit ski or outriggers. I'm not as good at using equipment as I could be.

My problem, it seems, is that I keep my weight too far back on my skis. I try to control my equipment from the back. It is totally possible to ski in this way, but it's much more work than it has to be. With a little instruction, though, I am experimenting with shifting my weight forward over the front of the skis and controlling things from the front seat. It's amazing that once you do this, the skis literally turn themselves. Rather than fighting the snow and muscling through it, it's like the skis are moving themselves down the mountain and I'm just along for the ride. It just takes fully committing and shifting the weight forward, out of the back seat where it seems safer.

The same can be said of life, I guess. When you try to hang back where it seems safe, you can spend a tremendous amount of energy fighting and muscling your way through every experience. It's only when you fully commit to moving to the front seat, that suddenly everything gets easier. Rather than struggling to control things, you can work with the equipment and go along for the ride.

Friday, January 11, 2013

Change of Season

Today I finally put away the Christmas decorations. I extended it for a while this year, just happy to have the tree and stockings to look at. But today, it was time. The wreath on the door was starting to look brown. The kissing ball had long ago been blown down by massive winds and was sitting in pieces on the bench by the door. (The stockings and tree still looked fabulous)

Afterward, I was expecting to feel a little down, but I actually feel quite content. Things seem calmer. Everything is back in its usual space and it feels much roomier in my living space. I feel a sense of closure.

Officially closed out Christmas season and opened up ski season.

Adaptive skiing starts tomorrow. Can't wait!

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Good Luck Thursday

Today, after days of overcast skies, the sun came out. Driving to work today, I saw the faintest rainbow over the canal. Walking across the parking lot, I passed a floating feather a la Forrest Gump. In shared a treatment room with two lady bugs for a while this afternoon. Drank a couple margaritas with some friends after work. And on the way home, saw a shooting star.

I think I'm in for some good luck!

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Questionable Advice

Many many moons ago, I started doing the 50 Questions to Free Your Mind, which I had seen on many other blogs. Then I stopped. I stopped freeing my mind, I stopped blogging, I actually stopped running and going to the gym for a while! But that's a story for another day.

Today, the story is actually a question:

If you could offer a newborn one piece of advice, what would it be?

In my experience, any advice you give a newborn baby is a waste, because that baby will never remember anything you say. You'd be much better waiting until the baby is at least 5 or so. Once, at Baby Gap, I saw a onesie that relayed pretty much this same thought. It said "I'm not going to remember any of this". Really funny, and really true. Why would anyone wax philosophical to a 7 pound person wearing diapers? The most you are going to get in return is a gurgle or a pant-load of poo.

However, let's just for arguments sake, imagine that the question asked about giving advice to a person who could actually understand, appreciate, and even follow said advice. Exactly what advice would I give?

I seriously don't think advice is a one size fits all kind of thing. Advice that I may give to one person would be completely wrong for another. For instance, I recently told my 14 year old niece that she should go a little bit easier on herself. I told her that she should do the best the can in a reasonable amount of time and not run herself into the ground trying to get everything perfect. I told her that it's okay to let homework slide every now and then and that grades aren't everything. I told her that having a well rounded life is just as important as grades or a good job.

I would never give that advice to my best friend's nephew. On the contrary, we have both sat him down and told him that he spends a little (a lot) too much time trying to be "well rounded". We have both told him that he needs to concentrate more on studying, getting good grades, and working. He, unlike my niece, is selling himself too short and not holding himself to high enough standards. He needs to work harder.

I told my brother that he needs to go along with everything his wife wants on their wedding day and that he doesn't really have a say. "Aren't we supposed to be equal partners?" he asked. "No, that is the MARRIAGE. We are talking about the WEDDING; completely different. On your wedding day, you are essentially and accessory."  For him, that was excellent advice. He started calling HIMSELF an accessory!

There are some people who, upon receiving that advice, would want to throw themselves off a cliff.

One size does not fit all. Well, except maybe for this little nugget: several years ago, at a bridal shower, we were all given index cards upon which we were supposed to write advice on "how to make a marriage work" for the bride to be. Having never been married myself, I felt totally unqualified to give any such advice. Yet there were lots of people there who were quite happily doling out pithy little points like "never go to bed angry" or "always kiss each other before leaving the house".  

Years later, I've still never been married. But unlike a good percentage of the advice givers from that particular bridal shower, I've never been divorced, either. And now I'm thinking that maybe my advice was pretty good, after all:

"Never take advice on how to live your life from an index card"

Or a blog post.

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

In defense of LSD

As 2013 rolled in, I started noticing that just about everywhere I looked, I saw articles prompting runners to ditch their long runs in favor of shorter, speedier runs. Outside magazine's January issue features an article that outlines the Crossfit Endurance franchise's approach to marathon training (longest run 13 miles). January's Competitor urges runners to "Ditch the LSD" and incorporate "hard effort" runs into training. One online running site I read implored runners "don't let your mind wander on long run days or before you know it, you've logged nothing but junk miles."

Short, fast running seems to be the Vibram five fingers of 2013.

It seems rather odd to me that so many sources appear to be implying that the worst possible thing you could do to improve your running is -- RUN.

Let me say now that I know that if you are striving for a PR, increasing your running speed is paramount. Tempo runs, fartleks, speed workouts all are good tools to improve your speed. I also know that cross training is also a great way to improve your running. We all know those people who do NOTHING but run, logging insane weekly milage, ignoring overuse injuries in the making, never picking up a weight or jumping in a pool or on a bike. I think they are missing out on many wonderful training opportunities. However, the recent trends in fitness publications appear to be saying that for runners, running is a complete waste of time!

I'm going to go out on a limb here and confess that long slow distance is my absolute favorite aspect of running. On Sunday afternoons on the beach or along the waterfront or by the canal, I love just logging the miles and letting my mind go blank. Those long runs for me are about so much more than fitness, they are more like therapy.

Several years ago, after a difficult break-up, I was suffering from insomnia and having a hard time coming to grips with what-the-hell-am-I-going-to-do-with-my-life-now? Fortunately, a friend of mine asked if I would train for a marathon with him. Lo and behold, as the weekly milage increased and the Sunday runs got longer, I noticed that I could actually find some peace and clarity. Until then, my mind was always going a mile a minute, keeping me in a frantic, anxious, sleepless state. But somewhere around mile 6 or 7, my brain's incessant chatter (the "monkey mind" in Buddhist teachings) would actually shut up. I had minutes and later hours of delicious silence in my head. As the training progressed, my monkey mind left at mile 4 then 3 then 1 or 2. I could sleep at night. By the time the marathon arrived, I felt like myself again.

In various races over the years, I have met people who have through running, gotten past the death of a loved one, divorce, mastectomies. I have met people who have found self esteem, courage, direction through running. I have met people who, like me, found themselves once again through running.

Training hard and fast is good.  Striving for personal best and trying to improve your race time is also good. Cross training is good. But in the world of running, we must not forget that running for the sheer joy of it is good, too. Running long and slow with absolutely no purpose whatsoever than to just run is never a waste of time.

Happy running!

Monday, January 7, 2013

Weekly Recap

Weekly Recap:

One week into 2013 and I feel like I'm creeping right along. Not POWERING ahead, but slow steady progress. Especially since I spent the majority of the previous week on the sofa!

1) Blog Daily: 6 of 7 days. I'll call it a success
2) Get back on an exercise program: Looking good. Missed a couple days because of some unforeseen emergencies. But overall I'm sticking to the self-designed plan which, I must say, is pretty good.
3) Hike in Freetown State Forest: Not yet, but it's on my calendar
4) Eat a gigantic salad every day: Check. I love em. But...does anyone else get bloated from salad? Or is it just me.
5) Solidify a gir's weekend in Connecticut. Solidified. In New York.
6) Try (and post) a new recipe every week. Oh crap. Two next week?
7) Finish Patient Education Binder: Just getting started.
8) Get a smart phone: Yeah. About that. Verizon seems to think that I should only be able to get a smart phone when it's convenient for THEM, not convenient for ME. I'm totally not down with that. Seems this little "get a new phone" business is going to be a bit more of a project than I had anticipated. Stupid cell phone companies!
9) Take more pictures: I suppose that would be easier if I actually plugged in my camera and charged the battery.....ok, I'm back. I just plugged it in. Totally missed some great picture ops this weekend, too. Basketball games played by 5 year olds are hilarious! Anyway....I think this weekly check in business is a good thing. 'Cause it made me plug in my camera.
10) Hang with my buddy, Wheels. Still trying to nail that down.

And in other news....signed up for the "Best Foot Challenge" here and I gotta say, just 5 minutes in the morning makes a big difference. It seems like that would not be nearly enough time to get anything done. But just 5 minutes of journaling first thing in the morning turned into 5 minutes of journaling and 4 minutes of meditation (or in reverse order. Whichever) and in the time it would have taken to hit the snooze button, a nice start to the day.

And yeah, I did actually hit the snooze button one day, but hey-- baby steps, man, baby steps.

Who knew 13 was such good luck?

Sunday, January 6, 2013

Extending Christmas

It's January 6th and my Christmas tree is still up. My stockings are still hung up by the fireplace. My wreath is still on the door.

I have no desire to take any of it down.

It's not that I'm in a lazy mood; I did quite a bit of tidying up around here this weekend. It's just that I'm not quite ready to put away the Christmas season.

I'm going to enjoy the tree for another week or so.

Friday, January 4, 2013

Good Days, Bad Days

Despite the greatest of intentions, January 1st, 2013 was a bad day.

It started out nicely enough; I went for a short run down to the beach and back. I made myself some delicious peppermint mocha tea and drank it while reading a nice inspirational book and journaling a bit. Then, bright and early on new Year's day, I cleaned out the file cabinet of any papers I did not need to keep into the new year. I pulled out papers that I would need for my taxes and put them in a folder labeled "taxes", determined to get everything done early this year. I dusted off the shelves, put together a bag of things for donation, and tidied up my closet and dresser. All before 10:30 am.

2013 was looking so orderly and organized I could barely contain myself!

Then I ventured out to interact with other people.

I went to visit a family member who had invited me over for lunch. It did not go well. From the moment I got there, all she did was push my buttons, seemingly on purpose, clearly in an unrelenting manner. First, she was complaining that nobody helped her bring in the groceries, even though I had just carried the groceries up into the kitchen. Then she complained about the staff at the grocery store and the bags from the grocery store. She complained to me about other family members. Then she complained about how her brand new computer that she got for Christmas didn't work.

I said I'd get on the computer and see if I could figure out what she was having trouble with. That's when things really started to go downhill. She yelled at me for moving the laptop from one end of the table to the other. She yelled at me for plugging it in. She insisted that the battery was sufficient even though the "low battery" signal was blinking on the screen. She yelled that the password was incorrect, she yelled that the user name was incorrect. I finally figured out that she was trying to put the network information in as the login information and attempted to show her how to log in.

The next thing I knew, we were both screaming at each other at the top of our lungs. I was telling her to  "Just shut up for one freaking second and listen! Let me show you how to do this!" She was insisting that "I know what I'm doing! Don't treat me like I'm stupid!" I ended up grabbing my coat and storming out. I had lunch at a sandwich shop in town by myself.

That is not the way I had envisioned this day going.

The ironic part of this scenario? That inspirational book I was reading  (Add More -ing to Your Life by Gabrielle Bernstein) was talking about the concept of "mirroring": the idea that the people who push your buttons are merely a reflection of insecurities that you have about yourself.

I read that while drinking my tea and thought about a person at work who rubbed me the wrong way. A person who was bit of a control freak, a Martha Stewartesque person who always seemed to be pointing out ways what she was more organized than everyone else.

So, I absorbed this and journaled away and came to the conclusion that I was irritated because I actually was insecure about being disorganized. And then I ran in and cleaned out my file cabinet. BAM!  I left for my lunch plans feeling pretty damn smug about myself.

One thingI have learned in life is that anytime I feel smug about ANYTHING, a giant life lesson is coming on its heels.

Today was a quicker turnaround than usual.

While I really do feel that my family member was intent on arguing today no matter what, I did not need to be intent on taking everything personally. I did not need to jump in and point out all the errors in her line of reasoning. I did not have to try to fix everything. Maybe if I had just sat and let her vent and listened, the end result would have been much different. Maybe she wasn't intent on arguing, but needing to be heard. I didn't rise to the occasion.

I remember earlier in 2012, when I was having a bit of a rough patch, the recurring thought in my head was "Nobody ever listens. I repeat myself over and over and over again and nobody ever hears what I am saying." It was not a good feeling.

It's not a good feeling to be on the other end, guilty of not listening.

For the past 3 days, in the back of my mind, I have known that I had to go apologize this weekend, even though I really really really did not want to. I knew -- KNEW -- that she would not accept my apology and would hold this over my head for a long time to come. But nonetheless, I would have to apologize just the same. It's what you do.

Then, completely out of the blue, she called and apologized to me.

Despite all my worst fears, January 4th, 2013 was a good day.

Thursday, January 3, 2013

One Word

One of the things I have been bombarded with over the past two weeks is the idea of picking "one word" for the year. I don't know where this idea came from. I don't know who can claim credit for it. I don't know how everyone else in the universe appears to have heard about this WAY before I did.

And closely related -- I don't know when scrapbooking came back into vogue, but scrapbooking about  the one word is quite popular, as well. But, I digest.

I have had many many years where I did this very thing, but in reverse. At the end of the year, upon reflection, a word pops into my head that more or less sums up what the past 365 days have embodied. I have had "adventure" years and "learning" years; "love" years and "heartbreak" years; "growing" years, "healing" years and one memorable year that I remember as "crazy, frantic, catch-up" year. (that was the year I turned 30 and thought I had better get lots accomplished or live until age 112)

I have never, however, thought about picking the word for the year at the beginning. I think there is a certain logic to it, though. Rather than letting everything play out the way it will and then reflecting on it, maybe deciding how you want things to play out will actually influence the way they do.

Much like resolutions and goals, the "one word" is a touchstone, a signpost. Something to keep you on track and help you to steer back toward an intended destination if you do get off track. Something to reflect upon before the 365 days are up.

And on that note, I have chosen my one word for the year:


And not just because Journey is responsible for this little ditty:

My intention is to make 2013 both a figurative and literal journey.

I'll keep you updated.

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

  1. Less is More: Whether we’re talking about hair(cut off 16 inches), material possessions(regular donations to the thrift store), or work hours(I finally put my foot down), I’ve found that paring down is where it’s at!
  2. Except for Exercise:  With exercise, more is more. Especially if you enroll in a long distance Spartan or Tough Mudder race. More exercise (also known as training) is preferable PRIOR to the actual race day.
  3. Green Smoothies are Awesome:  All those crazy nut-bag people who  tout the benefits of green smoothies like cult members? Well, it turns out they are NOT crazy, they are actually quite smart. Once you get past the color, green smoothies are just about the most delicious thing you can pour in your mouth. Plus, nothing starts the day like a glass of liquified spinach and kale!
  4. Vietnam is Gorgeous: Last spring, I was lucky enough to go on a trip with a group of friends to Vietnam and Cambodia. This was not a trip I would have thought to plan myself. And shame on me for that! Vietnam is a fantastic place to visit. The landscape is beautiful, the people are nice, the ocean is just about the same color as the Caribbean. Plus, there’s that smell of napalm in the morning. 
  5. Balloons are very rarely worth the effort: You always think balloons are going to make everything happier and more festive. But they won’t. Seriously. Balloons will inevitably cause problems. They just aren’t worth it.
  6. Trace Adkins is a great guy: Until August 2012, I had no idea who Trace Adkins even was. That’s when he picked Cape Able Adventures as a non-profit organization to feature in his show Great American Heroes. (Cape Able is the adaptive sports program I have been volunteering with for the past 3 years) For 2 days in August, we were involved in filming and then we got free tickets to his concert and a great gift of new kayaks for the program. Nice, right? I think so.
  7. Some People should not be allowed to have Facebook accounts: You probably know a few yourself.
  8. Overnight Relay Races Rock:Your should totally do one. 
  9. There is a Such Thing as an Unhealthy Disney Obsession: When I did the Disney marathon in January I met several people with such an obsession. And while I was very impressed with Disney’s capacity to organize a marathon (MORE port-a-potties and water stops than needed and a chocolate stop...SCORE!) I don’t plan on spending every vacation day I have for the next 20 years in the Magic Kingdom, collecting character pins, or decorating my entire house in a Disney motif. Just sayin’.
  10. Everything Will Work Out in the End: While it’s true that sometimes life throws you a suck-fest (mine was called 2011) eventually suckiness will turn into happiness if you just wait long enough. Of course, I may have stolen that from “The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel” move. You decide. 

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

January Goals


January 1st is such a clean slate, isn't it? A blank canvas that can be used for anything! I love that feeling.

But first, a look back at December:

1) Journal and Meditate Daily: Check. Except for the 5 sick days when I was collapsed on the sofa like a zombie in front of the TV. Self reflection was not high on my list those days.
2) Green Smoothie, Green Juice, and Green Tea Daily: see the above answer
3) Exercise 31 times in 31 Days: Third time's a charm. 5 sick days.
4) Make a Vegan Recipe for Work Potluck: I gotta post this one in January. I tweaked a recipe from here and it was AWESOME! I had, like 5 people ask me for the recipe. Which I kind of took credit for, even though it came from here. But then I fessed up that I'm not really all that creative in the kitchen. I'm awesome at tweaking, though.
5) Replace my Lunch Plate for Work: Done. Now I'm "the plate girl" again.
6) Go See the Xmas Lights in New York and Boston: 1/2 credit. I went to NYC with friends, but cancelled the Boston trip 'cause of that GI business. I think they are dismantling the decorations as we speak today.
7) Pare Down 5 Books from the Shelf: And then some. I reached that point where I looked at some of the books I've been hanging onto and said "I ain't never reading those." Not even if I kept them for another 15 years. So I got rid of them. I got rid of 10 books.
8) Decorate my little apartment: My apartment looked so super duper cute it should have been in a Meg Ryan movie from the 90's. (not quite Elf, but hey, I'll watch You've Got Mail every single time it's on)
9) 3 group runs: two runs. A Winter Lights run and a pub run. Both dressed like an elf.
10) Take lots of pictures: total fail on this one. sigh.

January Goals:

1) Blog daily. haven't done that in a while
2) Get back on exercise program
3) Hike in Freetown State Forest: Close by and notorious as "the most haunted hiking trail in America". I have GOT to go tempt fate!
4) Eat a gigantic salad every day. been craving salads. In January. Go figure.
5) Solidify a girl's weekend in Connecticut
6) Try (and post) a new recipe every week
7) Finish patient education binder for work
8) Get with the program and finally get a smart phone
9) Take pictures!!
10) Hang with my buddy Wheels!

2013, here I come!