WIR – give all the fu*ks

this past week was another busy one. is it EVER not, though? seriously.

despite my lack of social media presence and interest (sorrybutnotsorry?) i’ve enjoyed going over my past weeks to reflect and ponder on just how much stuff can happen in 7 days. and this wouldn’t be possible without the great linkup hostess of WIR’s, Meg. please give a fu*k and linkup here.

Week-In-Review-Button-Final

my theme of the past week is caring. give a shit. give a fuck about stuff. i may not know a lot, but i know i’m joyfully growing a tiny human inside me, and i want her to know that it’s ok to not give a fu*k about everything. but on that same note, it’s OK to care. in fact, it’s OK to give a big fuck about a lot of things. i know it’s super trendy right now to ‘not give all the fucks’ and all that jazz, but fuck that. i give a fuck about stuff. some stuff. i don’t give a hoot about celebrity facebook/ig posts and can’t join people in their quest for self affirmation via social media. but i do care about the things in my life that matter. and i don’t care what other people care about or think. i’ve made a lot of friends over the years and i can’t say they are all still my friends. i’ve crossed paths with people temporarily, and used to wonder if i’m supposed to keep in touch with everyone. but i don’t. you don’t. people come in and out of life. some stick around for a while, for longer, or just for a moment. i’ve realized that friendships take a bit of work but otherwise shouldn’t be that hard. life can be hard, but we don’t have to make things harder by giving a crap about non-consequential crap. who cares what who wore? who cares if your polish is chipped or your kitchen is clean? in the grand scheme of things most stuff is just trivial. the big stuff matters. what is big to me are my family and health, and my gosh darn mental abilities. things that make me happy, like sweating and helping people sweat. and learning stuff. waking up and cuddling with my 3 loves – dj, muffin, and hubby – bring me great joy. as long as they’re good, it’s all good in my hood.

IMG_5288

so thanks for bearing through that tangent. i’ve been going off on a lot of tangents lately. lack of alcohol and caffeine have brought out major thoughts in me. i think i like it.

IMG_5284
something funny that reminded me of days long gone, but certainly memorable

but back to the point and post at hand. what did i get up to this past week? 

  • lots of spin classes – both teaching and taking
  • volunteered an entire day at the asia society
  • attended a volunteer banquet at the asia society – superb!
  • did a lot of adulting and wifery: laundry, domestics, cooking, work stuff
  • had a prenatal appointment: baby Smith is good, approx 4lbs and growing. doc said eat more protein, i say OK!
  • had a friend over for lunch
  • went out to lunch and dim sum
  • met with my bestie for a much needed mani and pedi – ahhhhh sweet delights
  • watched Deadpool at home… fell asleep for 10 min but overall it was entertaining
  • watched Game of Thrones
  • supervised hubby as he hung ALL the pictures in each room, minus baby room
  • had date night with epic pizza place discovery neary home. YUMMY
  • celebrated hubby’s last final exam
  • got thank you cards for upcoming shower (after realizing all my stationary disappeared during our move. so sad!)
  • researched tons of wall decals for nursery – changed my mind a thousand times
  • took care of sick pups all weekend – good news, they are both healthy! whatever it was passed. relief and joy to the world.
IMG_5289
a very tired and low energy muffin :(
IMG_5286
me after teaching class = happy place
IMG_5293
turned my pregnancy pillow into a doggy bed/donut. muffin loves her doggy donut :)
IMG_5296
us at the vet today hearing the good news – she’s ok
IMG_5287
some songs that i’m adding to my list. already have most of them ;)

what did i really give a fu*k about this past week? 

my doggies and their health. i’m guessing my pregnant state of mind is making me very sensitive, and noticing them not feeling well just cuts me to the core.

also volunteering at the asia society. it’s been such a joyful place to be and help, that i don’t feel like i’m doing much besides enjoying myself. it’s an honor to be there.

putting together my playlists and teaching the best classes i can. i try so hard to make the best classes i can for each location, and really can’t wait to get back from maternity leave to see what my non-preggo self can do. watch out world!

my growing nugget – she’s the center of my cinnamon roll… the best part of everything, and my motivation and inspiration for doing all i do. can’t wait to meet her.

my goals for next week are pretty much the same – and get my art supplies back. i need to create art! i give a big fuck about art so i need to make it a priority… already have a big zebra painting in mind 🙂

how was your week? 

best part of the week?

 

 

WIR – dazed & confused

this past week flew by and i literally don’t know what happened to the seat of my pants. didn’t make sense, right? exactly. neither did this past week to me.

luckily nothing bad happened, and i know that because of this whole WIR process. it forced me to go over exactly what happened – thank you trusty day planner!!!! what would i do without my day planner and google calendar? i’d be lost and in bed all the time. maybe. or just be very frustrated. that constant feeling like i’m forgetting something lurks closely behind me, and my planner and calendars are my safety nets, my life jackets. i’m totally fine with these emotional crutches. i like things this way.

so thanks again for our hostess and gorgeous new mama bear, Meg, for this linkup.

puffy heart and pink kisses muwahh muwahh muwahh smooches

Week-In-Review-Button-Final

this past week had me deep in thought. as i spent time unpacking the smaller boxes – the ones that were in storage and were filled with old photos, old art, old books.. old diaries and memories – those boxes had me feeling utterly nostalgic and thoughtful. i swear it’s not pregnancy hormones. the pregnancy hormones had me feeling out of breath every time i heaved up and down the stairs and complained silently about it, expecting something to happen. a miracle? yeah, pregnancy delusions of power.

looking back over my week, i see and FEEL like i did a lot. quite a lot.

in summary:

  • lots of walking with friends 
  • so much laundry
  • cooking meals at home
  • baking cakes
  • endless dishes
  • endless caretaking of fur babies and wiping of fur butts
  • a few spin classes, both taking and teaching. happy place
  • a run with my hubby and the run club
  • trespassed onto a polo field
  • dog groomers
  • grocery shopping
  • mother’s day celebrations times 2 
  • played photographer for a day
  • lunch with friends

Monday – morning walk with friends, laundry. afternoon taking photos to help my friend launch her website and promote her small business. i’m not professional, and we realized that in order to properly show her clothing, we need mannequins. not skinny girls with big ta-ta’s. so lessons learned, no worries. i like helping. i did a spin class that evening to see what the instructor had planned; since i teach his class the following night i like to see what they did the day before.

Tuesday – i spent the entire morning waiting for salvation army to come and pick up our old furniture and donations. this created a grand opportunity for me to clean up and go into super organizey mode, which i did. more laundry loads later, they arrived by lunchtime, and very nicely picked up our old unwanted items. it was immediately a relief to see that space free up. that evening i taught my spin class and loved it. so much fun. feeling more breathless though, as my bump grows…

Wednesday – early morning walk and catch up with friends. then i taught a lunch time spin class. i loved it again! it was at a gym that i didn’t like previously because i felt like i couldn’t figure out their sound system, however this time i managed to figure it out and really had a blast.

Thursday – another walk, house cleaning, some work stuff. then i took the doggies to get groomed. while they were at the groomers i dashed around 2 grocery stores to buy supplies and ingredients. that afternoon i baked 2 pineapple upside down cakes, and that evening my hubby and i (and the dogs) took them over to the 2 neighbors that rescued our sweet fur baby, twice. an evening of relaxation followed.

Friday – taught an early morning spin class, then had a long walk with the gals. then came home, cleaned up and napped till later on when i had a late lunch. that evening my bff came by to see our new abode, and we strolled over to a great restaurant and had ourselves an awesome dinner, and some great girl time. she pronounced our new digs and neighborhood to be ab-fab, so all is well in my world 🙂

Saturday – hubby joined me on my 6.5 mile run/walk/run with my group at the nearby park. we trespassed onto a polo field, purposely, and were told to get off the property as we were leaving. my poor hubby was very upset about this, and felt that my running friends were being bad lawbreaking influences. i couldn’t help but giggle. i mean really, i used to sneak into cemeteries as a kid to drink gross beer. this was nothin. plus, it wasn’t technically trespassing since it’s a city park… we know good lawyers, too. i went to the gym to say hi to friends, had breakfast, then met my mama at the galleria to walk around all the expensive shops. we had fancy coffee and snacks in the the saks 5th ave bar, then she came back to see our new place. we walked over to a sushi place and had a mother’s day dinner, one day early. it was grand. she loved the new place as well.

Sunday – mother’s day part II – this time we celebrated my mother in law and drove out of town to the woodlands where we met for a late brunch. everyone poked my belly and said don’t worry it’ll get huge, it will suck. i said thanks and smiled. afterwards we went for fro yo.. i found my happy place. took the doggies out for a mother’s day walk around the hood, then relaxed and did more work stuff. got my office area somewhat organized.. it’s coming together. my  next big focus will be to hang wall art, get my art supplies back from the studio, actually do some art! and maybe bake something. my hubby loved the cakes i made and wants more. it’s the least i could do. he’s the best hubby ever.

another thing that’s happening is that Ironman Texas is next weekend, and since i wouldn’t have met my hubby had it not been for Ironman Texas, it gives me great feelings of emotion. not good or bad, just awe at how far we’ve come. my life was all about training and doing all these long distance endurance activities every single weekend from 2012 to 2015, and now here i am with a baby girl in my belly and sweet fur babies, and a sweet hubby who’s working on a final exam as i type for grad school. my oh my, how times fly. i used to be so engaged with social media, posting all our group activities and rides, always going from one event to the next. living life to the ultimate fullest. now i feel like i’m not trying to rush around to anything, but my life is still full. in fact, my life is truly my ultimate best at this very moment in time. had it not been for all the fun i had during my IMTX training, i would not be sitting here feeling so grateful. i got to meet some amazing people, but the best one of all is  my hubby. he’s my Ironman for life.

again, no pictures. i’m stubbornly waiting for a miracle – meaning i’m waiting for my photos to magically appear into my blog without me touching a button. might be a while.

questions:

have you ever trespassed, accidentally or purposely? yup, not all the time but i’ve certainly done so. thankfully  not in the last 20 years, with the exception of this past saturday.

have you ever broken the rules? this is a trick question to me. duh.

how did you celebrate mother’s day? 

 

WIR – Moving & Twirls

even though we still have (some) boxes to unpack, a whole garage full of chaos, and several other crisis (plural) to manage, i’m taking a moment to write a WIR post because gosh darnit i need a break. i need to remind myself of all the glitter and gold that occurred this past week and know inside my soul that the whole week was not total shit a disaster.

the queen bee and gorgeous mama leader of this WIR party is of course Meg, so please check out her linkup here and link yourself up, darnit.

 

Week-In-Review-Button-Final

seriously though, i can be the biggest drama queen. i mean, really.

OK so we moved, and yes it was crazy, and yes our dogs broke out of our new small yard twice in 3 days… but despite that honestly we got so much done. and most of it well. well meaning nobody went to the ER, and we both have our offices semi functional. hooray for team smith!

before i ramble too much as usual, here’s a summary of the past week:

  • we packed up and moved
  • unpacked
  • i volunteered at an artist talk from china
  • family day out at home depot, best buy, and more
  • set up new home
  • got dressers and a craft table from IKEA
  • we have 4 bathrooms… ??? bought stuff for 4 bathrooms. whoa
  • got TEVO
  • so much laundry!!!!
  • grocereries and cooking
  • got a new crib for the new crib
  • taught cycling classes – enjoyed mental break
  • had a prenatal, not a candidate for an epidural so it’s either au natural, or c-section. au natural is my goal…
  • ran/jogged/walked/shlepped around the new hood
  • met our neighbors, love our neighbors
  • joined a neighborhood mommy group – so excited to meet local moms!
  • so much space!
  • hubby put up a new fence to be doggy proof
  • discovered the dogs outsmarted the new fence
  • dogs were rescued by 2 neighbors twice
  • explored and enjoyed neighborhood eats
  • date night on saturday
  • had sunday brunch with friends
  • bought a used treadmill

yeah, so we did a LOT this past week. my poor hubby did SO much work that i was tired watching him. i tried to help as best i could, but sometimes being out of the way was the best thing. our main move day was monday and even though we had movers, my hubby still had do a lot. like unpack and organize as quick as possible – we both hate boxes and living out of boxes, so because of our double strengthed neurosis, we expect our lives to be efficient as soon as humanly fucking possible. sleep? who cares. nobody sleeps till all the boxes are unpacked, broken down, and recycled in at least most of the main rooms. we are both very demanding, but since i’m preggo this meant that he got stuck 80% of the work. i unpacked all my personal items… but he did the whole freaking house! and not to mention he packed as well.

if i don’t recognize my husband is an angel from heaven or mount olympus, i must be a prize idiot. i recognize, i really do. this whole week he was building stuff, fixing stuff, hauling stuff, buying stuff… it was  like a 7 day ironman event.

i took time out of the moving and unmoving on a few different occasions to volunteer – this was fun. there was an artist from china talking about how art has changed in china, and what it all means now. very interesting stuff. i manned the door 😀

i took time to explore our new hood with the dogs, with friends, and on my own. even squeezed in 2 jogs as there is  literally a running trail just across the street. awesome.

we had a glorious date night on saturday after his class – a sushi place within a 4 min walk. heaven!

anyhow, there is still so  much to do and today i’ve got to haul around my precious fur babies with me on errands because the fence can’t be fixed till tonight. i could lock them up inside but i hate doing that, so with me they come for half my day, then they’ll have to be indoor dogs for a couple hours. compromise.

i managed to take a couple pics, randomly, over the week. of course i always wish i took more!

sunday artist talk volunteering
art from china
messy kitchen
messy but new kitchen. so much space and happiness!
living space
just the beginning… the main living area
downstairs stairs
hello 3 levels and 6 sets of stairs! who needs stair master???
ikea dressers
dresser shopping from IKEA. we bought 2 of these
home depot with dogs
home depoting it with the dogs
crib in the crib
crib in the crib
carpet twirls
muffin twirled on the carpet as a sign of approval.

have you ever bought used treadmill or other used piece of equipment? 

do you know and like your neighbors?

do you love moving??? 

 

 

Cycle Me Crazy

despite all the craziness that is going on around me (like flooding, yes our poor city got flooded again quite badly… oh and packing/moving. there’s that going on also… and being pregnant. that’s not new) i have been using indoor cycling as my escape. as i mentioned in my latest WIR, indoor cycling, spinning, whatever you wanna call it, it’s my current love. not only has it kept me sane during pregnancy, but now that i am teaching the cycling classes, i have found a whole new reason (besides getting a fun workout,) to love it: MUSIC. oh yeah, i love getting a good sweat but more than that, i love sharing it with others. and i truly love seeing people get a great workout to my personal tunes. once upon a time, i wanted to be a dj, and i also thought about being a personal trainer. well for me, being an indoor cycling instructor marries these two worlds together beautifully. yeahhhhhhhhhh boy. uhhh. let’s get this party started.

scratch that last one, there is no party going on right now but i’m still excited to share my latest cycling class workout with you. before i begin i’ll go over some history:

  • i started spinning in 2003 after i had back surgery in 1999 (to stay sane and in shape, and get over my fear of bicycles) and to cross train with running
  • i got a bike in 2004 and started road riding, while still spinning indoors for fun
  • this eventually led to triathlons, and eventually Ironman Texas 2013 & 2014 – yes i really DO blame spinning for getting me into the Ironman World of Crazy!
  • i stopped cycling outdoors when i got pregnant a few months ago, and started spinning again
  • got certified by Schwinn to teach power meter indoor cycling classes in Feb of this year
  • got hired by 24 Hour Fitness a month later

since February, i’ve been going cray cray with the spin classes by going to as many different classes possible each week to see what the different instructors do. when i was doing serious triathlon training back in 2012-2014, i took spinning a few times a week through LifeTime Fitness. to me it’s all the same but mainly it’s the instructors that keep me coming back or wanting more. i used to love my morning classes because the music was good. when i’d try other classes with different music, i sometimes felt disappointed. it always made me want to teach my own class so i could have own music. *yes, i realize that not everyone will like my music either but that’s ok! it’s all about the energy.

now that i’ve got some classes under my belt and sampled a butt-load of other teacher’s classes, i’ve come up with my own framework that i love.

i love my classes to go something like this:

  • warmup
  • intervals
  • speed work
  • hill climb
  • intervals
  • speed work
  • hill climb
  • intervals
  • speed work
  • isolation work/core
  • hill
  • sprint
  • cool down

My playlist from this week was:

  • Sound of Now/Avicii – Warmup
  • Born this Way/Lady Gaga – Interval
  • Alive/Krewella – Speed/sprints
  • Left Right/Chemical Brothers – Hill
  • Safe and Sound (cash remix)/Capital Cities – Intervals
  • The Drift/Blackmill – Hill
  • Somebody that I used to Know/Tiesto remix/Gotye – Intervals
  • Blow/Kesha – Intervals
  • RESPECT/Club Edit/RLP Barbara Tucker – speed, sprints
  • Turn Down for What/DJ Snake and Lil Jon – isolations and core
  • Everyday I’m Hustlin/Vladss – hill
  • Sandstorm/Darude – Sprint
  • Bitter sweet Symphony/The Verve – cool down

So there you have it! my fun for the week. I’ve got a class on Friday night and I’ll probably change it up a bit, song wise, but I like to always have intervals, speed, and hills/strength. Isolation exercises are fun, too!

Anything you like in particular about your spin classes? music

What type of music do you like to spin to? I like anything with a good beat.

 

WIR – Back in the US, Cycling Classes, & Why I Love Traveling with a Veg Bro

greetings earthlings! ti’s been quite a minute. yes, i’m well aware. there’s been a lot going on and i tend not to write unless i feel moved to do so. today i felt moved: seeing Meg’s post of her glowing, gorgeous self with her precious newborn made me feel so warm and fuzzy inside. i look forward to sharing the experience in just 2 more months. gulp!!

without further adieu, i’ll begin my glorious Week in Review. courtesy of the most beautiful mamma on this side of the globe, Meg.

Week-In-Review-Button-Final

so a lot’s been shakin’ in these parts over the last few weeks! i’ll try not to go too far back and dive into the nitty gritty of all the going’s on’s, but basically we are getting ready to move, hubby is finishing up his 1st year of grad school (brutal!) and we just took a spontaneous/impromptu trip to Barcelona for my baby bro’s spring break. oh yeah, and i started teaching cycling classes at 24 Hr Fitness! as a sub, but i’ve picked up a regular class till i have to take maternity leave. plus i’ve been subbing 2-5 classes a week, it’s been amazing fun but rather crazy as a preggo lady and all. don’t try and imagine it.

Moving on up:

we’re getting ready to move, so in the spirit of moving we did absolutely nothing last week for our move this coming weekend. zilch. zip. nada. yeah…. i blame nobody. we’re just last minute type of people. actually i’m not, but i’m 30 weeks pregnant and my hubby said not to worry about it, so i’m doing just that. OK, i finally broke down and asked him if i could hire a mover at least to help him… thankfully he agreed. i love our crazy life. #weareTHOSEpeople

Return from Barcelona:

we took a very spontaneous babymoon #2 to Barcelona, Spain the week before last to spend my baby bro’s spring break together as a family. my mom, stepfather, hubby, and baby bro, all one big crazy bunch in Barcelona for several days. they never knew what was coming till we arrived, let me tell you! the trip was a whirlwind of fun, food, and activity from dusk till dawn. i’ll leave it at that. i posted a bunch of pics on IG, and still have more that are just sitting there collecting cyber dust, but oh well. anyhow, we got back early last week and immediately hit the US soil running. i had spin classes to teach and clients to help. and a baby to continue to grow in my belly. and our sweet fur babies to collect and love on. the week totally flew by and i’m proud to say i had no jet lag coming home, nor did i have any issues while were were overseas. in fact, i had quite a lot of energy and not just for a preggo lady. my hubby said our vacations during my pregnancy have been more active than when i was without child. fancy that!

Cycling Classes:

my little cycling hobby and love of fitness has finally paid off literally, i’m actually getting paid to sweat. YEAH BABY. i got hired as a cycling instructor at 24 Hour Fitness just over a month ago, and since then i’ve picked up a bunch of classes that i’m subbing. i dipped my toe in the water slowly at first, but now i’m hooked. i absolutely love teaching cycling classes, and love giving people a good workout. i also love putting together playlists just as much – i wanted to be a dj in another life so i’m making my dream come true with each class. i don’t mind if i’m annoying because i’m really excited to be teaching, and i know my time is limited since Baby Smith and maternity leave are just around the corner. each day is a blessing and i feel privileged to be able to still feel good each day that i do. gotta make the best with the time we have! i’d love to write a post on my spin classes and the type of workouts that i like to create, and share my music list. it’s really been the only thing that makes me feel like blogging, go figure?!

Traveling with a Veg Bro:

this isn’t exactly something that happened last week, but it still had me pondering for days so i’m including it. my baby brother is a vegan, and traveling with him was so incredibly fun! i’ve been vegan and traveled before, but felt like i was missing out. and honestly i’ve never been able to stick to a pure vegan diet for more than 90 days. but my brother is amazing, he’s been vegan for almost 2 years and i’m just so proud of him. he has traveled a great deal over the last 2 years and always managed to find delicious veg friendly food. he was also able to find veg friendly restaurants/eateries in Spain and we tried them out as a family at least once a day – and they were all so wonderful! i loved traveling with him and dining around Barcelona with a veg head because it really allows you to see places you wouldn’t normally see as an omnivore tourist. my brother is truly an inspiration to me, and i’m proud to say that some of the BEST meals we had in Barcelona were veg friendly, and in the COOLEST parts of the beautiful city. cheers to you, bro!

Couples Counseling:

that’s pretty much all i got for now… well almost. my hubby and i decided to go see a counselor to help us get ready for the baby. we love each other endlessly, but we’re both the type of people that like to be PRO active rather than re-active. we know that life is stressful right now with my hubby working full time and in school full time, and pregnancy and cancer… etc. and it ain’t going to get easier with a baby. LOL no really. so i can honestly say that it was incredible to be able to talk to someone together. we both feel better, stronger, and more prepared for what’s to come. we knew we could figure it out on our own, but decided it’d be worth reaching out and asking for a coach along the way. so that’s what we got: a baby coach. our counselor will see us and help us get through the next few months, and i couldn’t be more happy about it. she helped me remember a lot things i forgot, all in just 60 minutes, and i can’t wait to see her again next month.

that’s all folks, sorry no pics. just couldn’t be arsed…. (brit slang;)

have you ever traveled with a vegan/vegetarian? 

have you been to Spain?

do you take spin classes, and if so do you have a great instructor? 

what makes an instructor good or bad? 

ever gone to couples’ counseling? 

 

 

 

To Nourish

i haven’t talked about food or eating in a while, but considering it’s something i engage in and partake in several times per day, i figured it’d be appropriate to share some thoughts/reflections i’ve been having lately.

what does nourish mean?

well, it’s a verb and naturally requires action. technically it means to ‘provide someone with food and other healthy things in order to live‘ but for me it means much more.

my relationship and thoughts on food have evolved immensely in the past few months. i suppose it might have something to do with the fact that i’m not just nourishing myself, but i’m also nourishing a growing human. SNAP. reality check much? yeah when the magnitude of that concept sunk in, i was like, ” whoa, holy……..shit. this is fo real.”

i sound like a gangster surfer dude 15% of the time in my head, sometimes aloud.

anyhow, the realization that everything i’m doing and ingesting is having a direct effect on this growing life inside me rattled me in great ways. to say the least. it caused me to release ALL food fears i had and go into a deep, zen-like place, and ask myself what does my body need?

my body answered:

real food

tasty food

nutrient dense food

variety

joyous eating experiences

spice

flavor

quality

LOVE

this last thing is the most important. love in all things i eat is at the forefront. at least that’s my intention.

when i nourish myself, i do it lovingly. i make sure i’m honoring my body and my soul. sometimes that means i want lots of veggies drowning in olive oil or butter; sometimes it means i want a giant plate of ribs; sometimes it means i want a pizza with nothing but tomatoes and garlic. whatever it means i do my best to listen within, and kick fears out the door.

when i nourish myself, i love to gather with family and friends whenever we can and enjoy great feasts. i love to be surrounded by laughter and food, i can’t think of a better way to nourish and feast. food for the soul.

when i nourish my soul, i feed it art and culture; i feed my soul with nature; i feed my soul with bubble baths and lovely smells like cinnamon or vanilla.

when i need to nourish my body, i give it sunshine and walks with friends; i give it fun exercise classes to be around other people; i give it play time with the pups in a nice park, sitting on the grass; i give it naps.

i’ve discovered there are many ways to nourish, and i have enjoyed exploring all of them. lovingly. this is how i want my daughter to feel about nourishing herself.

most of all, i want to water and nourish this growing seed in my belly with love. that’s what it means to me to truly nourish myself. love. love myself, love others, love what’s happening right here and now, whatever that may be.

how do you nourish yourself? 

Week in Review: The Joyful Happies

As Meghan pointed out last week in her WIR, 3/20 was International Day of Happiness. Who knew?

New-Intl-Day-Happiness

I honestly had no idea such thing existed, but then again am not surprised considering we have a day for everything it seems… Donut Day, Pizza Day, Coffee Day, Secretary’s Day, Boss’s Day, Sandwich Day… where does it end? I’m not objecting to any of it, it’s great to keep the greeting card companies in business. SURE. International Day of Bacon doesn’t bother me at all.

Excuse my cynical tangent, back to the point. Oh shit, yeah I’m talking about last week, my Week of Joyful Happies. I just made up that word, ‘happies’ and don’t give a damn about grammar. I’m doing ME, thank you very much. Wise words from a wise woman 🙂

In case you want to link up your week of Joyful Happies, check out Meg and her linkup here.

Week-In-Review-Button-Final

So, Joyful Happies. Like I was saying, Sunday 3/20 was International Day of Happiness, so in the spirit of this I’m going to list something joyfully happy from each day of the week. There, I can break away from my cynical comfort zone momentarily and express utter gratitude. After all, there is always something to be grateful for… every single moment. I don’t give a shit if you’re homeless and under a freeway. If you’re not dead, you have something you should be grateful for. So, in that sense I have a shit ton of things to be grateful for. I’m quite far from being homeless and damn happy about it.

Monday:

I gave myself the morning off. Instead of attending my 3 hour sewing class, I allowed myself to take a much needed nap. The dogs and I napped in bed for 2.5 hours, it was incredible. Joyful Happy Moment #1

Tuesday:

I skipped painting to volunteer at a kid’s spring break writing workshop at Asia Society – it was soooooooooooo much fun to watch and be a part of. I have never felt more gratitude or joy being a volunteer than helping these kids enjoy a writing workshop given by a real author, Melissa Williams. It was such a gratifying day. Joyful Happy Moment #2

Wednesday:

A great walk with friends, new and old. Taking a long walk with inspiring women of diverse backgrounds is always energizing on multiple levels. I’m deeply grateful to know some amazing women.

Dinner with my best friend – she lost her mother just 2 weekends ago, and this happened 2 weeks after her wedding. Being able to have dinner with her and bond was tremendous, it was a true gift. Friendships are priceless. Joyful Happy Moments #3 and #4

Thursday:

Spending the day volunteering at another kid’s spring break workshop at Asia Society, this time to help do a cooking demo and teach about Chinese Dumplings. The entire day flew by and I felt like I had answered my calling – helping to show some underprivileged kids and international families something special and new, and seeing their faces light up… working alongside a lovely Chinese woman that reminded me of my great grandmother… feeling like I was being of service.. Feeling useful, feeling happy. What an incredible honor. I can’t say enough about it! Joyful Happy Moment #5

Friday:
Seeing my old chiropractor and feeling so good about how far I’ve come since we last saw each other. Last time I saw her I was physically beaten up with injuries and stress fractures, and she was horrified when she saw my spinal fusion X-rays, not being able to imagine how I’d been able to run and workout so much with full rods up and down. She did inspire me to pursue triathlon, and had it not been for her, I wouldn’t have met my husband, nor be sitting here now 25 weeks preggo.

Being able to appreciate my personal growth when it’s reflected in another person’s reaction is quite powerful. It felt really good to openly share my happiness and to receive it back. Joyful Happy Moment #6

Saturday:

Seeing my husband happy with his grad school peers – I met him and his classmates after their last session in the evening, and we enjoyed sitting outside. I loved watching him chat with his peers and look so animated and happy. It makes me happy seeing him passionate and excited. Nothing more to say 🙂 Joyful Happy Moment #7

Sunday:

The whole day was a big joyful happy: spin in the morning, then dim sum, then coffee with a great friend. The evening ended with hubby time and dinner at home with the fur babies. Life is good. Joyful Happy Moment #8,9,10,….. infinite

So that’s it, and again I didn’t manage to take photos of everything but here are some snapshots of some additional Joyful Happies: mostly my sweet fur babies, flowers along the bayou, and photos of our NEW TOWN HOUSE! yes, we move in next month. Oh joy, words can’t even express my delight.

sleeping buddy new patio new pad muffin sleeps joyful snuggles bayou walk

how was your week? 

greetings from hiatus homeland

i’ve been on a serious blogging hiatus… as if it wasn’t obvious, durrr-hurrr.

my intention was to return to blogging only AFTER i had come up with my new blog name and changed everything over… but since i finally accepted that it’s not going to happen anytime in the immediate future, i figured that i would just check in and say wha’ts up. updates on life, etc.

hold up, i feel the need to rewind a minute. a while back i was suffering from a blogging personality conundrum. i no longer felt that my blog represented me, but i mentioned i would keep my blog name since i do happen to like sriracha and fitness, blah-blah-blah.

well screw it, i was wrong.

ohhhhh sooooo wrong.

it just isn’t working for me! yes, thanks Dr. Phil. you helped me see the error of my ways.

i just simply can’t identify with my blog’s name any longer, and have felt that way for a long time. my own blog name needs to inspire me, right?

since i started blogging, which was not that long ago, a lot has changed in major ways. i don’t feel the need to write about recovery, that’s not really in my thoughts any longer. i used to spend my days reading recovery blogs, and i don’t do that anymore, either. other things in life have become more important to think about, and i just don’t spend my time wondering about why i do and eat whatever i do and eat any more. honestly, i feel healthy and in tune with my body… most of the time. i’m not perfect, but that was never my goal.

some harsh but lovely truths:

since shifting my focus away from recovery, recovery has actually gotten easier because i just sort of ‘do’ it. i work it, i make it work. i guess i recovered when i decided that there are more important things in life to think about than how badly i might have abused my body all those years and oh gosh what a total addict i was. so what. i don’t spend my days white knuckling life like i thought recovered addicts do – SORRY to my 12 step groups and all my overeater’s anon. peeps. that process and experience was fine for me in the beginning, but i definitely don’t believe my life will fall apart if i don’t attend a group meeting. everyone has a different path to success, i tried many routes. what worked for me was to engage in life and literally, LIVE.

people change, i changed. i knew that i wasn’t born an addict, i was simply born pure and like a blank canvas. like everyone else. we can choose to start over any time in our life, and i made the choice to start a new painting on my canvas. it’s been rather intense, beautiful, and sublime.

on to greener pastures… actually i might have lavender pastures.

eventually when i get around to creating my new blog and figure out my blog identity, i know it will be something that inspires me. i love to feel happy and live in gratitude.

gratitude has kept me feeling strong throughout this pregnancy and this cancer. my cancer is still there, hanging out on my thyroid. it must be a very nice thyroid, i’ll thake it as a compliment. luckily the mass has not grown. for this, i am JOYFUL.

i know that as a blogger you must think about your audience, and before i thought i wanted to reach out to other people struggling with demons or addictions. well, that’s changed so now i need to figure out who my audience is. women? new mom’s? people seeking joy? i’m seeking joy in every moment of life and work at finding the positive, so maybe something about that. i’m convinced that anyone can get through anything, there is always a bright side. i also love going after all the things i always wanted to do, like become spin certified, getting my real estate license, martial arts, cooking school, open and run a bakery, start a blog, own a home, travel on my own, create art, learn to sew, write, do an ironman (or two), run  a marathon…. life has no limits, the options are truly endless.

what’s been up? 

well, my baby girl is still growing and she’s a very active little monkey. i’m sitting at 25 weeks and feel different every day. i’m in awe of having this little thing move around so much in my belly!

baby name game:

my husband and i have been using this app, Any List, and created a list of baby names that we share. we are down to 16 names from our original list of 65. i call that major progress! we’re not deciding the baby’s name till she arrives though, i just can’t imagine name someone that i haven’t seen in real life before. i imagine we will narrow it down further but just see what she comes out looking like.

web detox:

i’ve been on a mini web detox, meaning i spend very little time on the internet these days. i’ll read my favorite handful of blogs, check emails and do some work. but that’s pretty much it.

volunteering:

i’ve become a volunteer for the Asia Society, Texas chapter. i’ll talk more about that in the upcoming WIR, but i pretty much love it. it’s such a great organization and they do a variety of great events. i love helping out with things that i love. love. love. love.

crafty stuff:

i’ve been seriously going after all sorts of crafty things – from collages, to painting, to sewing. i just felt the need to get away from the screen and instead reading about life, start actually living life. what a freakin concept.

house hunting: renter’s choice 

this has been my number one focus since the new year. we’ve been all over the place with house hunting. first we thought we ‘d buy, but now with the way the rental market and housing markets are, we decided that renting would be the best way to go. so we have spent the last several weeks figuring out what our living situation should be, meaning apartment? townhome? single family home? highrise? bungalow? WHAT NEIGHBORHOOD???? then i spent several weeks researching options in several different zipcodes. every single week i viewed around 10-20 properties. finally, we narrowed it down and last week we finally made our decision. after house hunting for 2 straight days, hard core, we found 3 places we love. i’ll keep you posted on which one we end up with. very excited…

spin certified and newly employed:

as of a few days ago, i am finally employed at 24 hour fitness as a cycle instructor! i started the process in february, and it has taken quite some time to go through all the training and auditioning. i still have an orientation to attend this weekend, and then i’ll be an official sub. i am not sure i can get my own class before the baby comes, but i certainly hope to be able to sub a class or 10!

well that’s enough updating for now, i’ll save some stuff for the upcoming WIR. sitting in front of a screen for too long is really exhausting, so if you’ll excuse me i have to get up and stretch my legs. and pee.

 

Week in Review: Snot Bubbles & High Tea

Week-In-Review-Button-Final

It’s time! time for me to blow my nose and linkup with Meghan and her fantazmic Week in Review Linkup party. The ONLY party I’d consider attending in my snotty state right now. Linkup here.

blog seflie
I’m actually blogging on a Sunday, and here’s proof! oh yeah it’s for real. I’m a true dork

I’m not just blowing my nose, I’m blowing my own mind right now because I’m typing this on Sunday rather than the morning on Monday, which is usually frantic and rushed. Not to make it sound bad, I love this linkup and going over the week’s events. But Sunday’s have been beyond busy lately so I’ve not had the time. Today I do, it’s Superbowl day and my gift is an empty apartment as my hubby has gone to the in-laws for a day of golf and sports. Hallelujah!!!!! No offense, I’m sick and don’t feel up to that. Actually even if I’m not sick, I still don’t feel up to that. My mother and I have our annual anti-superbowl ritual of going to Nordstrom’s and wandering around, then having dinner together and enjoying the quiet city as everyone is out watching the sporting event of the year. I LOVE going out when everyone else is inside or occupied. One year I may host an anti-superbowl party… expect an invitation and and lots of saucy eats.

Being pregnant is one thing – it’s certainly a doozy but doable – but being pregnant with a respiratory infection is a whole other can of worms. I think I’d rather deal with a can of worms than this, but that could be the snot and eucalyptus oil talking. Maybe not worms, maybe gummy worms. Which I still find disgusting so it’d be a fair torture.

On the bright side, I didn’t completely fall apart or rush myself to the ER. I managed to still be a lucid and present partner most of the time, took great care of the fur babies, caught up on reading mindless novels and watched a cute movie, made chicken stock that actually tastes good, and took a few walks.

I even bought myself some cute stickers along with my cough drops.

cough drops

The weather here has been fantastic, and every day my only encounter with the outside world has been to take the pups out for a nice longish walk. I carry lots of tissues, cough drops, and off we go. I use them as the excuse to get fresh air, and I think they appreciate it. I also love the new dog jackets that we bought in San Francisco. They are perfect.

dog fashion dog park trees

Luckily I’ve taken most of the week to truly rest. I can’t imagine doing anything else during the day since most of the nights were spent blowing my nose and coughing, and of course disturbing the dogs in the process. Resting has been wonderful, I feel much better today than I did on Monday evening, when I thought my face was going to puff up and explode. Yeah, no more of that feeling. Now I’m just coughing up lots of gnarly colored stuff and hawking loogies like it’s a sport. I’m getting good at this.

My week ended in the most lovely of ways with a High Tea that my mother and dear friend organized, a pre-birthday celebration of sorts. I’m not much of the party animal these days and can’t even imagine trying to throw a birthday part for myself. However the idea of a beautiful High Tea with all the lovely tea and scones and tiny foods absolutely tickled my fancy. I loved it! Since my birthday is on Tuesday, I decided to make this a month long celebration. Why not?

tea menu tea ladies tea sandwich tea plate tea begins scones scones with creamhigh tea

 

So yeah, other highlights of my snot-filled week?

  • Watched The Second Marigold Hotel, twice
  • Watched the new series, Lucifer, and liked it
  • Watched the X Files. Loving the new season
  • Made smoky chipotle chicken salad, which I can almost eat
  • Made chicken stock
  • Made brown rice and chickpea paella – basically vegan paella. Hubby likey
  • Went out to a new Chinese dive and the food was so spicy, I loved it
  • Ordered a few more Jane Green novels on Amazon
  • Laundry and disinfected the germ-infested bedroom – that’s happening all day today
  • Went old school and steamed my face over a hot bowl of boiling water, with eucalyptus oil under my nose and a towel over my head. That stuff works, my great grandmother had the best remedies
  • Drank 18,866 cups of hot lemon water with honey
  • Ate 29 Riccola throat lozenges
  • Washed my hair twice. Wahoo!

Next week will be crazy fun but crazy. Chinese New Year celebrations and feasting begins tomorrow night, along with my birthday, dinner with friends, art class, and hopefully me feeling much much better.

Have you ever had High Tea?

Have you tried steaming your face over hot water with a towel, old school style?

Have you seen X Files or Lucifer? 

Our 1st Babymoon: 4 Days in San Francisco

Babymoon Journal… so in my last post I mentioned the babymoon. Or “trip before the baby comes” trip. Now that I’ve caught up on the laundry I’m finally able to elaborate on all we did for 4 days – 4 days of nonstop action. Actually I’m still exhausted, but the show must go on. Right?

There was so much that we did, it’s tempting to just say yeah! we ate, walked, ran, saw stuff. It was great! then post a bunch of pics. That is seriously tempting.. nothing wrong with that approach, I’ve done that before. I’m fine with that approach. I get that approach. But this time I feel like sharing details.

Details, details, details. 

Maybe it’s the lack of booze in my life, or maybe it’s the hormones. I guess I just feel like mixing it up and sharing more. Oh, and remember how I was in a photo taking funk? Well apparently San Fran cured me of that. I became ‘that person’ that was taking pics of all my eats without any shame. I can be the type that doesn’t give a flip about pictures, but for this trip I wanted to document it all. I used to keep travel journals when I was a kid for the cool places I’d visit, so this is sort of like an homage to that.

Day 1

I started out the trip with a workout: a morning jog indoors using my Apple Watch to make sure my heartbeat was not too high. Then we scurried over to the airport and had breakfast – I was craving blue cheese and bacon, so a wedge salad was the answer. No wrong time to have salad!

Our flight was easy and when we landed, we Ubered over to our hotel. I loved how easy the Uber (and Lyft) transportation systems were in this city. We did a ride share from the airport to the hotel and it was super easy and interesting to see a couple of different places right away. We learned that not only were we in town for the San Francisco Restaurant Week, but also for the Superbowl 50 festivities. Wow! I didn’t care at all about the Superbowl festivities, but it made my husband pretty happy. I was excited about the food, so I’d say we both had our wishes granted. Soon we arrived at our hotel, checked in, and decided to head straight out to the Ferry Terminal to get a snack and walk around. As we walked up to the Ferry Terminal, we signed up for Lyft and were given 5 free Lyft rides each. It was a great deal and I wish we had Lyft in Houston.

Once inside the Ferry Plaza Farmers Market, we headed over to Hog Island Oysters to have some late lunch, then we walked along outside, then I had a sweet craving. So off to one of the amazing boutique ice cream stands inside the Ferry Market it was. I had the Rootbeer Butterscotch, and hubby had Smoked Chocolate Malt Rosemary. Both were out of this world!

After that we walked up and down Embarcadero, which was along the bay, and then it was dinner time! so we headed over to Chinatown. The Chinatown in San Fran was truly spectacular, it really reminded me of Hong Kong and just made me feel like a little girl again. I know why my great-grandmother talked to fondly of it! We poked around the little shops and then finally found a good place to have dinner. We ordered dumplings and then a main dish of shrimp with green beans. Both dishes were the best tasting we’d had, almost as good as my great-grandmother’s home cooking! They just know how to cook good food, that’s all there is to it. And I suspect all the ingredients are local, or magic.

After dinner we headed back to the hotel and called it a night, it had been quite an awesome first day.

Here are pics from Day 1:

breakfast at the airport jan 25our hotel hyatt hotel san fran hotel hyatt regency hotel hubby hogg landing lunch day 1 hogg island oysters healthy seagull at ferry terminal ferry terminal by hotel ferry market dumplings dinner in chinatown hunan garden day 1 day 1 selfie at ferry terminal market chinese food shrimp and green beans butterscotch root beer ice cream  bread bouillaibase

 

Day 2

After a good night of sleep in the awesome hotel beds, we woke up early to take the 8:45am ferry to Alcatraz. The Alcatraz Ferry Terminal was just over 20 minute walk from our hotel, so we decided to leave our hotel by 7am so we could have time for walking and breakfast. We had a nice walk and then breakfast at the cafe at the ferry terminal, which had surprisingly awesome food! My hubby had a breakfast burrito that he said was great, and I had yogurt and grapefruit because that’s what baby wanted. My hot chocolate was SO good, my  hubby tried it and ordered one for himself. San Fran does everything right!

Then we boarded the ferry and sailed over to Alcatraz Island. It was raining, which was rather fitting for the experience in my mind. I’m not afraid of rain! We decided to take the Alcatraz Garden Tour, and were able to see the hidden gardens of the island and learn about some neat history. We then spent the rest of the time walking around the prison, and then finally it was lunch time and we took a ferry back to the island.

gardens at AZ prof

It was still raining and actually rained all day, so once back we purchased some umbrellas and decided to walk to North Beach. The North Beach area was another fantastic part of town, but we were in search for the world’s best pizza!!! So Tony’s Pizza Napoletana it was, and oh my did it deliver. Never have I had pizza that good, it was mind blowing.

After our incredible lunch of pizza (and beer for my husband,) we walked over to the Ghirardelli Market area, another fun part of town! We hit up lots of boutiques and did some shopping, sampled some great chocolate of course 😉  then ended the afternoon in an underground wine tasting tavern where my husband got to taste lots of local wines, and I had some yummy local cheese. How fun! and the sommelier there recommended where we had to go for dinner: La Mar, right near our hotel. How great was that? We made reservations and decided we would have just enough time to walk back, shower, relax, then head out for dinner and fun.

After a shower and change of clothes, we headed out in the rain again and had an incredibly memorable dinner at La Mar. It is a Peruvian restaurant and the most authentic we’ve tasted, and how tasty! After dinner we headed over to a recommended bar, Hard Water Bar, nearby for mocktails for me, and whiskey for they hubby. The night was still young and we were feeling energetic, so we decided to get a Lyft over to Top of the Mark at Nob Hill for a late night dessert and listen to their live jazz band. The restaurant is at the top of a hotel and has a 360 degree view of the city, and was totally worth the trip and late night.

What an amazing day!

tony spinach tony pizza tony pizza at north beach tony cafe late sashimi la mar salmon la mar north beach n beach n beach 2 ghirardellie market ghiradellie square gardens at AZ gardens at az 3 gardens at az 2 garden cannonballs now flowers day 2 pecan dessert day 2 mocktail after dinner hard water day 2 top of the mark nob hill day 2 market rainy day day 2 dinner at la mar day 2 dessert pot de creme day 2 breakfast alcatraz cells at az alcatraz view alcatraz island alcatraz from ferry at alcatraz beef skewere la mar

 

Day 3 

This was our big athletic day – we decided we would run across the Golden Gate Bridge and spend all day hiking and walking around. We totally hit the goals and ended up with 16 miles total of walking, with 5 of that running. Whoa!

The morning started early again despite the late night. The sun was out and air was crisp – perfection. We had a quick bite at a Mc D’s because hey, it was convenient and I was craving a hash brown. 😀 Then we got a Lyft over to the Golden Gate welcome center, jogged around taking pics, then ran over the bridge. It was phenomenal!!!! Once on the other side, we took tons more pics than hiked around for a while. Then I realized my stomach was grumbling and we needed to eat, so we ran/jogged about 2 miles to Sausalito and had lunch right there on the bay, in this gorgeous restaurant right in the middle of Sausalito called Barrel House Tavern with amazing views. I think this place was a dream, it was all just too perfect. After lunch we walked around, did a bit of shopping, then took a Lyft back over the bridge to the Golden Gate Park. We spent the whole day walking around the parks, the gardens, and walked all the way back to the hotel. We were pooped! We asked the concerierge where we should go for dinner, and he recommended a little Italian place called Palio, so we got reservations, showered, and were off once again on foot. Dinner was OK, nothing spectacular plus we were too tired to figure out what we wanted. After dinner we decided to be adventurous and stopped into a nice looking tavern, The WayFare Tavern, for dessert. What a great surprise, this place was amazing! The place was packed but we got a place at the kitchen bar and were able to watch the kitchen pump out beautiful food with the precision of ballerinas. It was really a site, plus the desserts and fresh popovers were sublime. Once again, a perfect day.

day 4 wayfare tavern dessert day 4 italian dinner day 4 salad day 4 popover fresh day 4 lobster bisque day 4 dessert day 4 dessert at tavern day 3 sausalito day 3 sausalito selfie day 3 pre run breakfast day 3 post run selfie day 3 lunch day 3 lunch sandwich day 3 lunch salad day 3 lunch plate day 3 ice lolly day 3 golden gate day 3 golden gate selfie day 3 golden gate park day 3 GGbridge day 3 gg view day 3 gg sail boats day 3 gg run day view day 3 food 12662669_10153978061452642_804051562481517723_n

Day 4 

Our last day was half way filled with travel back home, so we wanted to make the most of it. We had an early morning breakfast at the Ferry Farmers Market, at a place called the Cowgirl Creamery, which was quite fitting since we’re Texans! and it was perfect and overlooking the water. After we got coffees, then we ran from there all along the Embarcadero and past Ghirardelli Market. We stopped to take lots of pics of course, then walked up and down the gettys and took our time walking around all the neighborhoods. By the time we were done, it was time to shower, pack, and start the journey back home! We had some time to relax but mostly we wanted to get going so we could have a late lunch at the airport – believe it or not, the food at the airport was awesome! Of course it was. It’s San Francisco. Everything is good there!

It took what seemed all day to get home since we didn’t land till late that very late that night. We tried to make the most out of the time and soaked up all we could. Neither one of us wanted to leave San Francisco and it was a very quiet plane right back home 🙂

day 4 breakfast day 4 pre run coffee at ferry day 4 pre run breakfast day 4 last run selfie day 4 view

By the time we finally got home it was close to midnight… so after some bedtime yogurt and snacks, we crawled into bed. I’m still recovering from this Babymoon of a lifetime, and can’t wait to return to this part of country with my baby girl in tow.

Have you been? 

Favorite places?

Anyone want to run over Golden Gate Bridge with me next year???