I have a confession to make:
I’m a former fat kid.
I still see myself as that fat kid.
For years, I have joked about it as a way to protect myself. If I could make fun of it, it wouldn’t hurt when others did. And it was okay to make fun of myself.
I wasn’t born a fat kid, it started slowly. I was a pretty cute kid for awhile. My parents made delicious food and I was a solid member of the clean plate club. I hated exercise. Partially because of my asthma and partially because I was (and still am) an uncoordinated klutz. My allergies were really bad as well (got allergy shots once a week for 6 years) and gave me an excuse not to play outside. Basically, I was a lazy kid who would rather read or watch TV. Nothing wrong with that except I was eating way more than I was burning and somewhere between fourth and fifth grade I started ballooning and have been struggling with my weight ever since.
It’s amazing how mean kids can be. I was bullied a little. Nothing compared to the stories you hear, but enough to knock your self-esteem down a bit. I was quiet and kept to myself, anything not to bring attention to myself.
I distinctly remember going in for my 10 year old check up and the doctor telling me I was 104 lbs and laughing. LAUGHING. At a 10 year old with low self-esteem. At the time, I was confused. Why did my doctor find this funny? OH because I was fat and it is almost unbelievable that I could weigh that much at my height. For a long time, I have held this grudge against my doctor. How dare she make fun of a child. I think that was the start of my self image issues.
My parents put me on LA Weight Loss in 8th grade. At the time I was about 130 lbs and really short. Like probably should have been 90 lbs short. I was able to lose about 15 lbs, but as any child on a diet, I didn’t want to stick to it. It was a lot of measuring and calculating. If it wasn’t for my mother, I wouldn’t have made it a week. But it got me to a better place. I remember my aunts telling me, “you look better, now stay there.” They didn’t say it meanly, it’s just how my family operates. They are very blunt and they do mean the best by what they say. It felt good to hear that, but at the same time makes you think about what you really looked like.
Let me state for the record that I was born big boned and have extra padding. No matter what I did, I was always going to be a little bigger. I also carried the extra weight well.
Let me also state that my parents have always been super supportive and have always loved me unconditionally. They have never once said anything negative about my body or given me any self-doubt about what I look like. The decision to put me on a diet was not only excruciating for them but necessary for me to be healthy. I was a very unhealthy child and I wasn’t listening to them or the doctor. There was hope that an outside source would do the trick and it still allowed me to eat normal food. They were also able to do it in a way that didn’t make me feel weird about it, or realize I was put on a diet. The self-doubt came from outside sources.
High school was high school. I was still unsure of myself and it took me a long time to find my group of friends. I found my place doing tech with the theatre department. My friends were misfits who belonged together and I embraced it. It felt great below to people when I was so uneasy about myself. I floated between 130-140 and reached my peak height of 5′ 0.5″ (That extra half an inch means I officially clear 5 feet!) By the end of high school, I think I was around 150/155 lbs.
Food and I have a tumultuous relationship. I started getting thoughts and images in my head of being the skinny minnie size 0. But I loved food too much. My family dynamic was surrounded by food. Every family gathering was all about the food and you weren’t done until you were in a food coma. Every achievement and good news was celebrated with food. I had issues controlling my portions and I always wanted more of everything. I was and will always be stubborn, so whenever someone would suggest I shouldn’t I wanted it more. Quite frankly, I had zero self control. I was a closet eater – as in I always binged when I was by myself. If no one saw me, it didn’t count. I constantly thought why couldn’t I be one of those girls who was naturally skinny and had nothing to worry about. I didn’t want to have to work for it. It didn’t help that my sister was a skinny minnie with boundless energy who stopped eating when she wasn’t hungry. So why couldn’t I be the same?
During my teen years, I battled with some depression and dabbled in thoughts I shouldn’t have. I wasn’t in a very good head space. But, I didn’t want help. This was about me and I could handle whatever it was and it was no one else’s business – not my parents, friends or family’s. I think a lot of it stemmed from my unhappiness with myself. Which really, no one could fix but me.
College brought the typical drinking and going out to eat causing weight gain. As long as the number on the scale wasn’t atrocious I didn’t worry about it so much. I did pretty well sticking around the same weight. I tried Weight Watchers with a friend sophomore year, and it gave me a better understanding of the food I was eating. It was much easier for my brain to view everything as points instead of calories. I lost weight, but never got down to where I wanted to, I think I got down to around 142 and stuck there. I have a problem where, once I know what I’m doing, I feel like I can cheat. Or I can calculate it all in my head and it will be the same as writing it all down. It wasn’t.
After college, I moved back home and the weight gain started again. Job searching and eating home cooked food did not do well for the waistline. I got back up to around 152 over about 9 months. Somewhere at the beginning of 2010, I finally decided to do something about it. I wasn’t happy and I was the only one who could change that. I knew I would need something to kick start my weight loss, so I started taking a diet pill. As much as I want to believe I could just change and have the will power to do it on my own, I knew I didn’t. My dad and I did it together and took Best Slim. I had tried others in the past and this is the only one that ever worked for me. No side effects and literally curbed my appetite. My biggest issue was snacking and, as long as I drank my water, those cravings were gone. Whether it was mental or not, it worked for me. I lost about 20 lbs and hovered right above 130/135. It was an amazing feeling. I was down a shirt and pants size, I felt better about myself and had more energy. I bought a few new pieces of clothing, like work pants and a few jeans and tops. I figured the majority of my other stuff wasn’t TOO big, so I could still wear it. I was too scared that it wasn’t permanent and I would need all those old clothes again. Since high school, I was in a size 13 in jr’s / 12 in women’s pants and a medium/large top. For the first time, I could wear a small top and my jeans were a 10 / work pants an 8. It was a definite confidence booster to finally feel better about myself.
J and I started dating at the end of 2010. We both got comfy and a few extra pounds snuck in. More J than me, but still not good. My largest problem was I was feeling more flabby. I started noticing my old cravings coming back and J and I decided to go down the weight loss journey together. He is like me and needed that kick-start and we started with Best Slim again. In the month since we have started, J is down over 20 lbs and I am down about 10. We have also changed our eating habits some – eating out less and cooking more, doing more salads for dinner, trying to cut the fried foods (which is difficult for my country man), adding more fruits and vegetables, etc. My big weakness are chips and fries or really anything potato. And ice cream, cannot forget ice cream. I also learned that I couldn’t not have it because it was worse than when I did have it. I had to learn to control my cravings, which is still a work in progress. I am also learning how to keep a balance – like it’s okay to have the dessert, but I cannot be gluttonous. I cannot gorge myself on food all day and not go for a walk because I will feel disgusting the next day.
Exercise is my next big hurdle. I HATE exercise and I don’t ever think I will be the type that learns to love it the more they do it. I have learned that if I don’t do any sort of movement, I feel like a tub of lard and it is not a good feeling. Things have to move – so we are starting slow. With the weather warming up, I have been taking Riley on longer walks in the afternoon as opposed to just letting her go to the bathroom and run around for a few minutes. This is something both her and I enjoy since she does get a little ansy. This dog loves to lay around, but sometimes she just needs to run. I started doing the Kinect when the weather wasn’t nice, but I really have to be in the mood for it. I think zumba would be a lot of fun, but I have a huge fear of doing things by myself and need someone to go with me haha!
Since none of my clothes fit anymore I am in need of a whole new wardrobe. Thanks to the wonderful support of my friends, I started looking for new jeans. We went to Lucky and something magical happened. I fit into a size 4. A FOUR! I have never been a size 4 in my entire life. I am officially out of the double digits and I almost couldn’t believe it even though I was wearing them. Granted, the jeans run stretchy so I had to go the size down BUT the fact that my normal size would be a 6 in JEANS was phenomenal.
Despite all these changes, it doesn’t feel real. I can’t believe it was me who wore this size, I have never been this small in my life. The problem? I can’t see it. The image in my head does not match with what others tell me. I still see that fat kid and I cannot shake that image. I am not sure that will ever go away, but I know I need to change it. I need to be confident in this “new” me, but I am struggling. I am filled with so much self doubt I can’t see the great accomplishment that is right in front of me. I feel like I will wake up one day and it wasn’t real and I was punked.
I still feel I look the same. I still see my love handles and extra jiggle. If it wasn’t for my clothes not fitting I would say everyone is full of crock. I don’t know how to go about changing that.
J and I had a serious conversation about this. I was going back and forth about getting these jeans because they are way more than what I would ever pay for jeans. My biggest fear was that I would buy these jeans and then balloon back to my normal size. I couldn’t afford for them to not fit a month later. He told me, “I wish you could see you how I see you.” That struck a chord with me. Why can’t I see myself the way he or anyone else does? If everyone is telling me these things, it has to be true. But the image I see in the mirror doesn’t match that, and that is where I need to start.
It’s funny, because when family sees me there is this shock and they say things like, “You are so slim now” or “You look so great now.” While I appreciate their compliments, it makes me wonder what did I really look like before. I have never been the best dresser, but did I look as horrible as these comments make me feel like I was? Again, it’s probably all mental and I over-think things WAY too much.
25 years later and I am finally focusing on loving myself. I thought once I got down to this magical size or weight, the confidence would come with it. I was wrong. I didn’t know that I would have to work at that too. It is almost as if I have to put all these broken pieces back together.
I must give a lot of credit to my support team. Between my family, friends, and J, there are a lot of people in my corner. I would never be able to do the things I am doing without them.
Long story short, I bought the jeans. They looked great and made me feel amazing. And I deserve it. Which is a really hard thing to admit to, because I am really good at justifying myself out of purchases I am also going shopping to replace my closet and once and for all giving away the clothes that just don’t work anymore. I like to pretend I can still wear them and looking like a sack is totally acceptable. I really should be on What Not To Wear…
I’m also doing something this summer that I have never done before, I’m buying a bikini. I am the queen of tankinis when it comes to the beach. As a challenge to accepting the new me, I will be sporting something skimpier. Now, if I could only find this magical bikini that fits right we are golden! Where do people get decent bikinis anyway? I’m having an issue finding one without paying a ridiculous amount of money.
I am burying the self-doubt, or at least trying to. It’s not easy, whenever I look in the mirror I have to remind myself not to not-pick. I refuse to step on the scale because I do not want to be obsessed with the number and want to focus on how I feel and how my clothes fit. I have been there and it causes nothing but anxiety. I think I am finally at a place where I can make conscious decisions without depriving or obsessing over every ounce of food. Or at least, I am trying to be. That girl I was isn’t here anymore, there is a new me. It’s all about the baby steps right?
Filed under: Life | Leave a Comment
Tags: health, lifestyle changes, new me, reflection, self-image, struggles, weight loss
Wow what a difference a year makes! A year ago today, we brought Riley home from the shelter. We started this journey with no plan at all and she continues to amaze us everyday. I still remember when we first saw her, it was in the last row that we looked at and she was sitting in a pen just shaking like a leaf. In the same pen was a very active and friendly poodle who kept jumping all over the place, they were polar opposites. The minute we laid eyes on her we knew she was ours. We sat through talks with the doctor and adoption counselor. We were told she was a puppy mill dog and the best way to acclimate her to her new home. She sat in J’s lap all the way home, both of us kind of in shock that we just adopted a dog together. Our first stop was PetCo, where she gained the love and attention of every single employee. Too bad she was so terrified she wouldn’t move and just shook. We went a little overboard buying her stuff, we weren’t exactly sure what we would need and wanted to be prepared. When we first got home, she wouldn’t go through doorways, she yanked on the leash and tried to get away. She did the same thing with stairs so we had to carry her up the stairs and gently coach her into the house.
When we first got her home, we had no idea what to do. She was very scared and hid in the corners. She hated (and still hates) having her back to you, it made her jumpy. The adoption counselor told us not to overwhelm her, just let her be so she can get used to her new surroundings. It was very hard not picking her up and just holding her. Lots of love was key, we were told, and we had a lot of love to give. Those first couple of months were really trying and had us doubting ourselves. She wouldn’t eat, so we started leaving her food out and let her eat whenever she wanted. It took a couple days before she ate the first time. She wouldn’t take treats, so training her with food was not an option. We were hesitant to discipline her at first given her history. We slowly realized she worked better with routines. She was terrified of anything she didn’t know, but if we did it a couple times she would eventually pick it up.
Training her to use the bathroom outside took a very long time, it was probably about a month before she peed outside and a little while longer for #2. We started with just walking around the neighborhood every few hours with her not doing anything. It started to get really frustrating, but we were persistent. One day, she decided she was ready and I got so excited and cheered so loud I’m sure I scared her even more. After a few more weeks, she was in a routine and we kind of knew what to expect during the day. She still has some problems, when she gets scared or confused she is most likely to have an accident but that’s about it. For awhile, she would only go up the stairs and would refuse to go down. So, we let her get used to going up first. They we started to coax her to go down them. At first she adamantly refused and every now and then she would go down a few steps and stop. But she always surprises you when she gets the hang of it. One day, she took off down the stairs and then looked at us like, “why are you so shocked?”
We went to puppy play dates at PetCo for awhile, and it seemed to help her. At first, she would just hide in the corner and shake, but eventually she would go and sniff other dogs. It’s her MO – sniff another dog and then run away and observe. Everywhere we went, we would take her with us to get her used to different environments. She would get really motion sick in the car, so we did a lot of short trips. She still has some trouble with longer trips and we just give her a little bit of dremamine. She LOVES to be outside, it is where she is happiest. She could run all day as long as you were there. We have taken her to the dog park a few times and I cannot wait for the weather to warm up to take her more this year. Our dog park is separated with an area for smaller/older dogs if you choose and then everyone else. We wanted her to get used to other dogs, so we let her run around the bigger area and she has absolutely no problems.
It has taken her a long time to warm up to J, I have a feeling it has to do with her past upbringing. For a long time, it was really hard on him because she would get scared when he walked in a room and he loves her so much. She used to run away from him if he started getting close to her, that broke his heart and mine. For awhile, every time J would go to take her out she would have an accident in the house. Now, she is his and he is hers. It is very clear that she loves him, it just took her a little longer to warm up.
We have her on a better schedule with eating and going outside, we try to keep everything as consistent as possible. We no longer leave the food bowl down at all times and she is getting better about eating on her own. At first, she wouldn’t eat unless you were sitting right next to her. Now, I show her her food, put it down and go to the living room. You cannot go too far, because she will follow you. She likes to stay close. She tells me she’s done by jumping up on the couch and I put the bowl up. She started to play games and would jump on the couch even if she hadn’t finished, but she quickly learned if she comes to the couch, the bowl is going up.
She is getting more comfortable in different surroundings. She doesn’t get as scared in larger groups of people, as long as they leave her alone while she gets used to everyone. She likes to sit back and watch everyone. If you are sitting on her couch, she will snuggle right up next to you. She gets held a lot, especially by my dad. He cannot get enough of her. She is much better at listening to commands (sit, stay, come). She LOVES to lick, and will lick you dry if she could (if you say “enough” she will freeze and just stare at you. it’s really cute). These days, we take the leash off of her when we get close to our building and let her run to the door. If she starts to run off, you call her and she comes right back. She takes off like a rocket and sits at the door with a huge smile on her face.
One of my most favorite moments is the day she started recognizing her name. Again, she always surprises you when she picks things up. It is not gradual, it is one day she won’t the next day she will. We were sitting on the couch and I was talking to her and said her name and she looked right at me. It was a very proud parent moment. J and I kept saying her name over and over again to make sure it wasn’t a fluke. It was a sweet moment. We like to play “Where’s Riley” when she is hiding. We call out “Riley, where are you?” and she comes running out from under the bed or the closet or her corner and gets right in your face like “I’m here! I’m here!”
This pup has no boundaries, she will be under your feet, in your lap, on your head… She just loves to be near you. We cuddle a lot on the couch in the evenings. At night, she sleeps right in between me and J. She is my little shadow though, wherever I go she goes. Even when we go to other people’s houses. This works in our favor because it keeps her from hiding, but I cannot go anywhere without this little one following. It is comforting for those middle of the night bathroom runs though. When I make dinner, she sits right outside the kitchen and watches me, like she is protecting me. She has become more vocal over the recent months. She growls when she hears something in the hallway and barks when someone is at the door. She is in a whining phase, which I hope passes soon. Honestly, we love hearing her growl or bark. She was so silent for so long, it’s nice to hear her voice sometimes. And it is great that she is more comfortable with using it.
She loves bones and anything she can chew on – dried tendons, rawhides, etc. We get her big ones so they last her a long time. The one thing she still hasn’t gotten the swing of is toys. We try to play with them with her and she wants nothing to do with it. She will sniff it and walk away. We have tried rubbing her treats on it, and nothing. We used to hide treats under all her toys before we went to work. We would come home and the treats would be gone but the toys were still in the same place. I have caught her once playing with a toy. I walked into the bedroom and she had her monkey toy’s head in her mouth, but as soon as I saw her she dropped it and ran away. I tried to get her to play with it again but she wouldn’t do it. She probably plays with it when no one is watching, that’s usually when she gets into her shenanigans. She tends to be a lot more active when she is by herself or she thinks you aren’t paying attention to her. She loves paper and will chew anything resembling paper. I once had a wooden ornament in a bag on the floor by the bed. One night, she got into the bag and chewed the ornament to bits. She is very curious and will get into anything and everything when she is alone. We can’t leave anything on the side tables in our living room because she will get on the arm of the couch and get whatever is on the table.
She recently found a puppy friend. He is a yorkshire that lives in our building. She cannot get enough of him, they both smell each other, run away and then do it all over again. It is the first time she has shown real interest in a dog friend. She plays with our friend’s labs, but they are usually more interested in her. It is so cute how excited she gets when she sees him. Sadly, they just bought a condo and will be leaving soon, but maybe a new puppy friend will move in.
We have definitely learned a lot with Riley. She is a very different dog than both of us are used to having. She isn’t in your face like other dogs, maybe one day but not yet. She is very sweet and loving and it is really hard to get mad at those eyes. She is not aggressive or mean, but when she is at her limit you will know it. When we first got her, we think we overwhelmed her with too much too quickly and when my dad went to pick her up, she tried to bite at him. It was just a nip, but she was definitely reprimanded. It happened one other time with a friend of ours and it was the same situation. That was very early on, and it has never happened again. She will let anyone pet her, but you will most likely have to come to her. She’s a very stubborn dog. She knows exactly what you want, but will stand there and stare at you. She much prefers it when you get on her level, it makes her feel more comfortable. She’s weird – she will come running if you call her and she is out of sight, but if you are right in front of her and tell her to come, she gets scared and won’t do it. I will usually have to move a little bit closer and lie on the ground. She doesn’t like when it is unknown and a huge distance, she will start coming and then get scared and turn back. Or, since she is long, she will stretch as far as she can without actually moving from her spot.
We never crated her, we were hesitant since she was a puppy mill dog. When we first got her, we would keep her in the kitchen with a baby gate while we were at work and at night. Once she was trained, we would let her stay in the living room when we were gone and she slept in the bed at night. When we moved apartments, we made the mistake of not gradually getting her acclimated to the space and gave her free reign. She had some accidents in the house for a little bit. In hindsight, we should have done the same thing we did in the old apartment and gated off an area for her until she was used to the new apartment. These days, she has the living room and dining room to run around while we are gone – the kitchen is always off limits so she doesn’t get caught in our feet while we are cooking or whatever.
Riley is a completely different dog than she was a year ago. We joke and say she is doing more “normal” dog stuff. She has tested our patience and we have come to wits end a few times, but she has proven time and time again that she will come around at her own pace. She will sometimes take treats from other people, which she never would before. She doesn’t hide like she used to and will come out when you call her. She gets so excited when you come home that she starts running all over the apartment. She does not shake profusely when in new environments or in public. Her personality has really come out in the past few months and she has become more curious about her surroundings. She has stolen our hearts and we cannot imagine our lives without her.
Since we do not know her real birthday, we are claiming her adoption day as her birthday. It was the start of a whole new life for our family of 3.
Happy 2nd Birthday, Riley!
Filed under: Dogs, Family, Life | Leave a Comment
Tags: adoption day, birthdays, dogs, family, love, progress, puppy mill, training
I’m going to keep this short.
Love is Love. No matter who it is between, it means the same to me as it does to you. It holds the same importance in my life as it does yours. Why must we keep debating this?
You cannot tell me that legalizing gay marriage is going to hurt our country’s values. We have been destroying those for a long time, this could do nothing but help them.
So you believe marriage should be between one man and one woman because God made one man and one woman? He also made rapists, murders and thieves – should we be on board with them as well?
I would really like to know how someone else’s marriage is going to effect your personal life. How will legalizing gay marriage have any actual impact on your life? If you don’t want to marry someone of the same sex, then don’t do it. Plain and simple. But just because you won’t doesn’t mean others shouldn’t have that opportunity.
What makes heterosexual marriage any more valid than homosexual marriage? It is two people who deeply love each other and are committed to one another. How will this degrade the sanctity of marriage? Divorce and adultery already have that covered.
And if the argument is a child needs one mom and one dad, then what about all the single parents out there? They have been doing a pretty awesome job on their own without having a second parent to assist. And on top of that, there are a lot of deadbeat or abusive parents – are you going to tell me a child is better off with them just so they can have a mom and a dad?
Riddle me this – what if you were severely sick and in the hospital, who would you want by your side? Your significant other – the person you love the most. What if they couldn’t be there to hold your hand as you took your last dying breath because your marriage is not recognized and only “family” can be by your side? What horrible pain you and your significant other must be feeling.
Or on the flip side – what if your significant other passed away and everything was in their name, but you have no legal rights to any of it because you are not legally married? Your entire life is gone in the blink of an eye, all because your marriage wasn’t “real” in the eyes of the government. I’m sure as hell it was real to you.
We have seen this discrimination over and over again. When will we break the cycle? When will we realize the world is bigger than our individual lives, and what is best for one person isn’t necessarily best for another? But, we have to learn to accept and respect people for who they are, not beat them down for having different beliefs. Not too long ago, my relationship wasn’t legal. You can’t tell me that my relationship has hurt or demoralized anyone. Same principle, different time.
And can we leave God out of this? There is a reason there is supposed to be a separation between church and state. Your God is very different from my God, neither should dictate how this country should be run.
Filed under: Life | Leave a Comment
Tags: DOMA, family, legalize gay marriage, love, SCOTUS
The weather here has been pretty crappy lately. PLEASE let the sun come back soon!
I have neglected the blog and I apologize. Most things have been the same in my world. I am trying to make an effort to see people I haven’t seen in awhile. It’s always nice to reconnect after a long time apart.
J and I met new couple friends, and as cheesy as it is, I love it. They are people we both want to hang out with and they aren’t “his” friends or “my” friends, they are “our” friends. I love when friendships are effortless – you just meet and hang out and have a good time. We all like doing pretty much the same thing so it works out really well.
We are also on a path to healthier living. J and I have put on some weight and I would like to see it go away. For Lent, I gave up “inactivity” and vowed to exercise the majority of the week. So far so good! My favorite thing to do is take Riley on walks. Being the weirdo she is, she gets so confused about what’s going on. She does her business and we keep walking. She gives me the “where are we going? home is that way” look and tries to run home. After a little while, she gets more used to the route. She is starting to get into everything these days – she is more curious, starting to warm up to more people (sorta). When an unwanted noise or person is in the apartment, she barks and growls. Slowly but surely she is learning more “normal” dog traits. The other day I caught playing with a toy! That is until she saw me and then wouldn’t go back near it. It really makes my heart melt seeing her do these things because I know there is a really playful dog somewhere behind the scared puppy.
The one big issue we are having with Riley is her accidents in the house. If she gets scared or confused, she pees on the floor and sits in it. We have no idea how to stop this while still trying to train her. I guess she will come around on her own?
I cannot wait for warmer weather, I want to do so many things outside without the fear of the wind knocking me down.
Any suggestions for indoor exercise? I want to do things that I can do quickly in between TV shows or errands.
Also, I have gotten hooked on The Following, but I can’t watch it at night because I am a wuss. If you haven’t seen it, I highly recommend checking it out!
Filed under: Dogs, Life | Leave a Comment
Tags: dogs, exercise, healthy, rain, The Following, TV, update
I cannot believe it has been a year since we lost our dear beloved Pug. My heart still breaks knowing he’s gone, especially thinking how much he would have loved Riley. How, no matter what was going on, he greeted you with a wagging tail and how much of a fighter he was until the very end. He was my dad’s saving grace when everything went to shit and his comfort when they didn’t get better. This past year was more difficult than the last and I think part of it was a little light was gone from Pug.
I know everyone views their pets differently, in my house pets were the same as children. Pug was our first dog, we learned a lot from him. Nothing will ever replace him but I know he is over that Rainbow Bridge healthy and safe and running around without a care in the world. It brings comfort to know he is happy and one day we will meet again. He watches over us like he always has and protects us.
In honor of Pug, hold your furry ones tight. There is no love like that of a dog. I am lucky to have had it and had a dog so perfect for my family. His life was cut so short, but he brought more to us in those three years than we could have found in a lifetime.
Filed under: Dogs, Uncategorized | Leave a Comment
Tags: death, dogs, pets
It is currently 1pm PST but if you asked me, I couldn’t tell you if it was night or day. I am at the end of my business trip and it was been quite a ride. Coast to coast traveling isn’t usually this bad for me, but this trip I am struggling. I kept waking up super early and wanting to go to bed at 7. Until today of course… I think my body has finally adjusted to the time change and getting out of bed was ridiculously difficult.
Usually my business trips are 3 days, so the time change doesn’t really affect me and I transition back quickly. This trip has been my longest (7 days) and I’m taking the red eye back home. I forsee a weekend of nothing but sleep in my future.
I really can’t complain though, I have spent 3 days in Portland and 2 days in LA – two places I can now cross off my bucket list.
I ate myself silly through Portland. We got some Voodoo Doughnuts the first day and I fell into a straight sugar coma. I chose the Fruit Loop one and it was an excellent choice! For dinner, we went to the Deschutes Brewery. The beer was delicious as were the burgers. We have a local office in Portland, so it was nice to hang out with people I don’t see on a regular basis. Also, big plus, they know all the great places to go!
The next day we went to Clyde Common and it was probably my favorite place on the trip. Everything was fresh and local. They make an amazing pomegrante and grapefruit lemonade (and I don’t even like grapefruit!) and gourmet popcorn at its finest.
On our last day, we cut out on the hotel lunch to be a Portland local and dine at the food carts! The pod we went to was huge and way too many choices. I decided on Sawasdee Thai and I highly recommend it. It was made fresh and very quick.
I was then off to LA. My connecting flight was cancelled, so I got in a little bit later than I had anticipated. Even at 10:30 at night, traffic was insane! I was greeted by the beautiful sight of palm trees leaving the airport and the bright lights of the Staple Center as I reached my hotel. The next day, after our training ended, we went for dinner at the Engine Company No. 28. It is a restaurant built in an old firehouse and was beautiful! I have always wanted to renovate a home inside an old firehouse (weird I know…) so this was definitely an experience.
We called it an early night since we were all exhausted and I spent the last night packing and watching My Big Fat American Gypsy Family… or something like that… on TLC. That is some quality television.
I love that my job has given me so many opportunities to travel, but the catch side is there is not much time to explore. You spend most of your time in the hotel, so almost all activity happens at night. It doesn’t leave much time for touristy things. And most of the time, I am to exhausted to even think of doing something more than getting dinner and going to bed. I really need to start factoring in an extra day or something at the end of the trip to actually see a city. But schedules don’t always allow for that. If I’m being completely honest, I wouldn’t want to do that anyway unless J was with me and he could experience it too.
This was also a big step in my career, as it was my first solo meeting. Our planner handled securing the locations and I handled the rest of the logistics. Not without a million questions might I had. I’m sure my coworker was really ready for me to leave by the end of that! I’ve learned a lot on this trip. I’ve learned how to be more assertive (though still very much a work in progress) and it reaffirmed that this is really what I want to be doing. This was a much smaller scale meeting in comparison, but it was still mine. We all have to start somewhere right?
As great as this trip has been, I am really ready to be home. I miss J and I miss my puppy and I miss not living out of a suitcase. But I will be home again soon and itching for the next adventure!
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Tags: Clyde Common, Deschutes Brewery, Engine Company No. 28, food, food carts, Los Angeles, Portland, Sawasdee Thai, traveling, Voodoo Doughnut, Work
So my department got an iPad this year for traveling purposes. It is to be shared between the people in my department when we go on business trips to see if it can help us during our events as well as ease our travel. i was tasked with getting it and all the accessories. We decided to go with the InvisibleShield since it is virtually indestructible and who knows how much wear and tear this thing is going to get. I went and got it and I asked if someone could do it for me and they told me there was a fee. Being the cheapskate that I am, I decided to do it myself. This thing is not so easy – it is rather tricky for someone as unprepared as me. The first time I tried it, I followed the directions to a T. Everything was going great! Until I noticed a piece of dog hair was stuck to the inside of the cover. Where the F the dog hair came from I don’t know because I was meticulous about cleaning it. Of course it was stuck to the adhesive side and there began the downward spiral. As soon as I got one thing unstuck, something else would be left behind – dog hair, my hair, sparkles from my nail polish, the microfiber pad… it was a mess. After 2.5 hours of cursing, I finally had to take it back to the store and beg for an exchange. Of course, it was the same woman who I had said no to earlier for installation, I’m sure she was smirking. 20 minutes later, I had a new cover that looks beautiful and I refuse to ever try putting on screen protectors again. There is too much pressure and I am clumsy and mess things up. It was absolutely worth the money to have it done.
On a completely different note, I saw this on someone’s blog and I think it’s worth a try:
It seems really great and doesn’t ask for a lot of you and by the end you have over $1,300! I haven’t been able to save anything in almost 3 years. There has always been something coming up and paycheck to paycheck is how it had to be. Maybe this will help build the savings back up…
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Tags: clumsy, InvisibleShield, saving money