Wednesday, October 27, 2010

I don't care if her clothes are wrong, first I look at the purse! *

My mom has a very differing sense of style from my sisters and I (actually, my sisters and I also have very different styles, however, we tend to agree more with each other than with my mom).  My mom is also very generous when it comes to buying me gifts, but it can make the whole process somewhat interesting. 

We have all started giving her very specific lists of what we want for Christmas, and if it's not on the list, we usually just get gift cards.  It's been a good system and a lot less returning has happened. 

My mom still gets me things that are not on the list if she sees something (I think she gave up doing that for my sisters) because I'm pretty much the easiest to please.  However, her methods for deciding if I will like something makes me laugh. 

For example, one time, she told me she really liked it and thought I would like it too.  This occasionally works.  Sometimes we like similar things (or at least similar enough she can predict I will probably like it).  However, my ALL TIME FAVORITE way she decided if I would like something, was when she told me that she really didn't like it, so she assumed I would.  (Thanks mom!). 

Her latest gift was an orange purse.  I have no idea if she liked it and thought I would, or hated it and thought I would like it.  However, doesn't really matter, because either way...I LOVE IT! 

It's a little brighter in person, but you get the idea.  Even the inside is cute!

Ignore my contents of said purse.  They are not as cute. 

So this was one of her gift wins.  It's super cute and I love it.  Feel free to keep getting me fun gifts mom!  This one was great!  (If you want to find me a matching wallet so I stop carrying around my old ugly one, feel free!)

*Rod Stewart

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

I'm standing on the stage of fear and doubt*

Last night I went for a run on the Perkiomen Trail which is about 15 minutes from my hotel.  It's not a true "trail", it's more like a paved path for a few miles, and then a rock path for the rest of the way.  I am not a huge fan of paved paths, I prefer dirt paths, but unfortunately, the access point closest to my hotel is paved for about 2 miles (of course) so that's what I ran on yesterday. 

However, something great about this path, it's over 21 miles long.  And, if you want a longer path, it connects to the Schuylkill River Path and somehow to the paths in the Valley Forge Park, so you can potentially run a ridiculous miles of paths. 

I decided this is awesome.  One of the reasons I always hated training for half marathons (and partly why I never wanted to trail for a full one) is because there was nowhere to run over 20 miles (unless I wanted to run 10 loops in the park) without going flat out insane.  I didn't feel safe running on the streets of Virginia and the parks only had 2 mile loops (the one park had a 5 mile loop, but it was not the safest place to be). 

While I was running my terrible two mile run last night (oh it was such an awful run), I began to think maybe I would begin training for a half marathon and maybe extend my training to a full marathon. 

Then, I came to work and saw this article and decided it was fate and I am not meant to train for a full marathon.  However, I'm beginning to start looking for a half marathon.  I want it to be in the spring, somewhere that won't get above 60 degrees, and is relatively flat.  Any suggestions? 

I also need to get back on track with my hydration and sleep because I'm killing myself lately.  I can always tell I didn't drink water enough before running, because my right calf muscle starts hurting like my muscle is trying to tear itself away from my leg.  Worst feeling ever.  Which happened last night at mile 1.27 and I had to run the last .73 miles with my leg feeling like it was on fire. 

First goal, cut back on the coffee, increase the water intake.  (Hey, small steps...). 
Second goal, set up a running schedule that consists of more than 10 miles a week.
Third goal, join a gym with a pool and use swimming as a cross training to reduce the impact on my knee. (or just suck it up and use the hotel pool even though it's small and sucks and people I work with are there). 
Fourth goal, find a half marathon to run. :-) 

Now let's see if I actually follow through on this. 

*Arcade Fire

Monday, October 25, 2010

The thing that I did wrong, was put up with his bullshit for far too long*

Last week was a very frustrating week for me.  However, this weekend was really fun and relaxing and I feel SO MUCH BETTER!  Yay weekend! 

I was walking Oscar Friday morning and saw this outside my hotel.  For those of you who can't see it, It's a hot air balloon floating by the parking lot across the street.  I realize it looks like the balloon is miles away, but it's actually about 200 feet away in the grocery store parking lot.  (Hi family - I would REALLY LIKE A CAMERA for Christmas!  Nothing too fancy, just a nice point and shoot and that can actually show details.  My phone fails at this). 

If you still can't see the balloon...look for the little dot-ish looking thing by the steam from the power plant in the background (to the left of the tree).  That's the balloon.  It was much more impressive looking in person.  It was big and purple and pretty (actually, it kind of looked like it should be representing Crown Royale from the colors and such).  It was just a random thing to see at 7 in the morning and it made me happy. 
I went to DE to visit J and Baby V.  While there, we went and walked around Target in an effort to distract Baby V (and we needed to buy some stuff).  I had intended to buy some rain boots and snow boots (yeah, I haven't really needed snow boots in five years, but I thought maybe I should find some since it usually snows a little in PA and it seems to rain here a lot as well).  However, the rain boots fit funny and did this weird bubbling thing around my ankle.  So I just bought some snow boots that can be used as rain boots.  Irritatingly, I can't find the picture of them online, but they are black with red and black plaid fabric.  And warm.  And dry.  So, whatever, I have boots for snow or rain.  And at half the cost I was expecting to spend.  :-) 

Saturday, I took Oscar to be boarded, and then headed up to North Jersey for Little H's birthday celebration (I can't believe he's 3!!!).  My little nephew has gone from baby to boy so quickly (Hi L- I stole your picture of H!)

I spent a lovely day with my family and relaxed.  I love being closer to my family.  It's nice participating in family functions that I used to have to skip when I lived in VA. 

I stayed for dinner with L and D (yay sushi!) and headed on my way home (with a parting gift of pasta fagiole from L.  She makes the BEST pasta fagiole ever and she usually gives me any leftovers she has...or just makes me my own batch because she's awesome like that). 

Sunday was spent watching football and knitting (all of my knitting is Christmas knitting so nothing can be shown for while...).  The Eagles maintained their pre-bye week loss tradition, and the princesses upheld their terrible play this week and have lost again.  I have managed to win ONE game ALL SEASON.  

And my team is bad I fully admit it, however, I don't think it's AS BAD as my points reflect.  Stupid Braylon Edwards ruined my whole season for me :-P

Anyways, I will now end this epic post on some gratuitous cuteness.  Oh I love his little face.

*The Wreckers

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Yeah you got the glue so I'm gonna give my heart to you*

  • I am so ridiculously sore today.  I didn't run very far yesterday, but I tried to run at a quicker than normal pace (it was getting dark, I wanted to get home quickly).  I notice when I do this that I clench my stomach muscles and move my legs differently (I'm weird, get over it).  Today, my hip flexors and my stomach muscles are rebelling.  Holy crap I hurt.
  • I am also super tired today.  I got to work at 5:30 this morning (this means I was awake at 4:30 and out of bed by 4:45).  This totally blows.  I am not a morning person and I have no desire to become one.  Anyone who willingly does this on a daily basis is INSANE (I'm looking at you NH). 
  • I have been eating A LOT of food today.  It's kind of irritating.  I've also been drinking a lot of coffee/caffeine.  I tend to do this when I'm really tired.  It's like the act of eating/drinking will keep me awake.  Except, it's probably just making me MORE tired.  Apparently I lose all sense of logic when I'm tired.
  • I got dressed at 4:45ish this morning.  You can tell. 
  • I pretty much don't really have much of a sense of style to begin with (at least not really a work appropriate one), but have me pick out clothes to wear at 5 in the morning and I guarantee I have absolutely NO sense of style. Around 9 this morning I looked at myself in the mirror and had to laugh (and cringe). 
  • I was wearing a dusty blue colored long sleeve shirt with a weird piping edge around the round neckline and cuffs.  On top of this shirt I had a baby blue short sleeved shirt with a scooped pleated neck and it's kind of a drapey shirt.  No real tailoring to it.  Both of these sound hideously ugly when I describe them but I swear on their own they are both perfectly respectable shirts.  I get compliments on them a lot actually. 
  • However, not together.  They do not even remotely match.
  • I was also wearing navy blue pants and black shoes.  And I brought my green Eagles hoodie as my "coat" this morning.
  • Honestly, I have NO idea what I was thinking when I got dressed.  Other than the fact I was freezing.  I remember that part.  I quickly took off the long sleeved shirt and just put on my sweater to keep me warm. But seriously.  I was a mess.
  • All I wanted to do today was look through knitting patterns online. 
  • I restrained myself and did my work.
  • I'm in dire need of a nice scarf pattern that is simple but not boring.  Suggestions would be lovely.  And I kind of want to get started tonight.  So QUICK suggestions would be even better. :-)
  • I really like pickles.  My friend gave me his pickles from his lunch today because I was in such a bad mood.  He's awesome.
  • I had a weird dream I was trying to find rain boots and snow boots and nobody would let me have any.  They kept trying to sell me really cute high heeled gray boots.  It really irritated me in my dream.  In real life I really do need to find some rain boots and snow boots.  I foresee a Target trip coming up.
Anybody have fun stories to share? 

I think I'm done for today.  There's only so much rambling I can do. 


Monday, October 18, 2010

Even if you cannot hear my voice, I'll be right beside you dear*

I'm feeling very un-inspired to write lately.  

Last week was one of the most mentally exhausting week ever.  We had a week long conference that had the longest days ever.  We basically went from 7AM to 9PM every day.  Even our lunches/dinners had scheduled activities.  There were no real breaks all day.  It was just long.  

I spent the weekend at my mom and dad's house.  I just couldn't work up the energy to drive the last hour back to my hotel.  It was ridiculous (however, due to staying there, I got to hang out with my cousin and aunt so that was fun).  

I went running today.  That was fun.  

I am knitting a super ugly pair of socks.  You'd think I'd stop knitting it since they're so ugly.  But it's a "mystery sock pattern" and parts of the pattern get revealed each Friday.  Therefore, I feel compelled to see how truly ugly this thing can get.  For the record the pattern itself isn't that's not my style of socks, but it's doable.  However, the yarn I've chosen for this pattern is TERRIBLE.  The color pooling is NOT working AT ALL for this pattern.  In fact, I look at it and am overwhelmed with how ugly they are.  (Bet everyone is crossing their fingers they get THIS pair of socks for Christmas!)

And that's all I've got.  

Told you I was un-inspired.

*Snow Patrol

Monday, October 11, 2010

I guess he's an XBOX and I'm more Atari*

I mentioned in my last post that I feel like shit. 

I am currently a snot factory and I feel like I'm coughing up nothing but snot.  (Such a pretty picture I know) and breathing has been something of a challenge lately.

I also feel slightly in a funk and not my normal bouncy, happy self.

So what do I do to feel better?

I go for a run of course!

I fortified myself with allergy meds, used my inhaler, and drank half a cup of coffee (caffeine helps!).  Then, I packed my sports bra with my phone, my inhaler, my mp3 player, my key card, and some tissues (hey, big boobs means a big sports bra means more room to stuff things in).  I looked a little box-ish up there as I was leaving, but whatever.  You never know when you're going to need something.

There is a nature trail around here that is about 2 miles long and I decided to aim for that.  My hotel room is about half a mile from the trail so I just walked halfway there and jogged the second half for a warm up. 

I got to the trail and it is quite inviting looking and I was all excited to run it.  (See...I was already using my phone to take pretty pictures!)

This trail is really wide, nicely shaded, nothing too hardcore looking about it.  Am I right?  You see this path and it almost invites you to follow it.  I was really excited about it. 

I start off down the trail, and although I'm having some issues breathing and my ears feel a little clogged, it's actually kind of nice.  (You know, once I got past hacking up my left lung and blew a few snot rockets it was pretty nice).

I passed a sign telling me I was a 1/4 of the way through the trail and it had been relatively uneventful.  The trail itself got really narrow (only about 6" across in places, but I wasn't having to dodge too many obstacles to stay on the trail so it wasn't a  big deal).  There was mostly grass or long weeds on the sides of the trail, so even if I went off trail, I wasn't really endangering myself. 

Then, I came to a fence.  The fence spanned the width of the trail.  However, it had a gate that easily opened, and there was no sign telling me to stay out, so I took it to mean I could just go through the gate, (I figured they were trying to block animals?  I don't know.  People in the south are weird).

But then the path turned evil.  It was super fun.  But evil none the less. 

I didn't really get a chance to take any pictures.  I was too busy trying to stay ON the trail.  The trail was still about 6" across at points, but it was also half way sloped down a drop into the river, or into a ravine with dead trees with branches sticking out ready to impale you.  There were roots all across the path you had to dodge and not trip over (actually, at one point they were quite helpful and made a natural stair case up the path so that was nice). 

And the other side of the path was a wall of trees.  So there was no room to err on the side of caution because instead of falling off the side into the ravine, you'd run head first into a tree.  The path was your only option. 

I was kind of wishing I owned trail shoes at that point.

Once, I got around the first ravine (I ran the whole thing...I wanted to get out as quickly as possible), the path widened a bit again and while it was still difficult and obstacle laden, I didn't fear for my life.  Instead, I just feared my legs might collapse from under me because they were so tired of climbing/sliding/etc and the easy run I had promised myself at the beginning of the trail had been anything but.  (At the same time, I was having a really good time.  It's always fun to surprise yourself with a much harder workout than you anticipated).

I came to this and finally had to stop and take a picture because really, there was no physical way I was going to run across, around, or over this. 

Pretty cool huh? 

Sadly, this picture doesn't really do it justice (hi cell phone camera!).  It looks like the trees are kind of one behind the other but all on the ground.  But they're not.  That was about a 4 foot high wall of trees/logs/whatever that spanned about 6 feet across.  It completely blocked the path and was not the most stable of obstacles. 

I finally managed to climb over and around the one side and got back on the trail, but at this point my legs were tired and I was almost to the end of the trail (which ended at the golf clubhouse).  I decided I couldn't run back the way I had come (My legs were tired and I wasn't sure I was capable of running back by the ravine and not falling off), so I was just going to take the main road back to the hotel.

However, clubhouses should NOT be two miles in the middle of nowhere with no signs pointing out which direction towards the hotel.  (Actually, I know nothing about golf.  Maybe they should be?) 

Anyways, this is where my phone came in handy!  Again!  ( should ALWAYS pack your phone in your bra when running).  I pulled it out and asked for walking directions back to my hotel and then ran the 2.5 miles back.

In total, I'd say the loop was about 4.5 miles, but I probably only ran about 2.5-3 miles of the loop.  However, I feel much better and much less in a funk, so it was worth it.  Now if only my  nose would clear up I'd be gravy.

*Cee-Lo Green

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Cause you broke all your promises, and now you're back, you don't get to get me back*

I'm not going to lie.  I'm getting really sick of hotels. 

Which kind of sucks...since I LIVE in a hotel.  However, I am really ready to get back to MY hotel.  I just want to be back with my stuff, and my dog (I'm really starting to miss him!), and my big pillowtop king size bed.  Sigh.

However, the hotels I am staying in have been quite nice. 

I stayed in the Omni in Richmond (Ignore the mess on my bed...however, please note my super cute silver ballet flats on said bed).

Although the curtains were blue (not green), I felt like I should be making play clothes out of them and teaching local children how to sing.  There were so many of them (I had a corner room, so two of the walls were full windows). 

However, irritatingly, the Omni charged a RIDICULOUS amount of money per night for internet, and since I was already stretching my travel budget, I couldn't justify paying for it.  So I was without internet while there.  Which sucked. 

I also ran into someone that I really didn't want to see while I was there.  All in all, I'm so glad I moved away from Richmond.  I just don't belong here.

This is the room I am currently staying in.  I actually really like it.  It's got a king size bed (sadly, not a pillow-top), however, the bed is really high up and I have some issues climbing into it.  My lame short legs. 

To make all this traveling even more sucky, I either have a cold or the worst allergies EVER because I feel like crap.  And I want to be anywhere but here. 

Five more nights, and I'll be back north where I belong :-)

*Christina Perri

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

I want to touch the light, the heat I see in your eyes*

My last office in Richmond had an average temperature of 88 degrees, which is ridiculously hot. 

My office here in Pennsylvania has an average temperature of 62 degrees, which is ridiculously cold.  (Happy medium anyone?). 

Making it even worse, there is a vent in the ceiling right in front of my office that blows wind tunnel force air out pretty much constantly (I'm not kidding about how hard it blows, when I sit at my desk it blows my hair straight back and I'm about 10 feet away).  I don't really enjoy gale force winds blowing directly in my face...especially when they are freezing. 

I have no control over the air settings in this office, so my friend JL and I McGyvered a vent cover out of an old box (he has the same problem in his office, so we did it twice). 

This is how we spend our lunch hours around here:

We are also short on anything remotely resembling a tool or anything that could be considered useful.  This is made up of a box that used to hold a dry erase board, the red string that is used to close inter-office manilla envelopes (the thing you wrap around the round thing to hold it closed...and wow that was the most un-descriptive statement ever...), and a shoe lace. 

I'm proud of our mechanical skills to actually get this thing to stay hanging even with the force of the wind. 

I'm not going to say my office is exactly WARM now, however, it has made a HUGE difference to not have the wind blowing in my face all day.  And, with my space heater under my desk, my office is almost comfortable! 

And now that I have my office almost comfortable, I am leaving for a two week trip back to Virginia (oh how I'm dreading this drive).  I'm already missing my little O, I just hope he doesn't forget me before I come back! 

*Ben Harper (yes, I realize he's not the original, but that's the version playing on the radio right now)

Monday, October 4, 2010

Take my tears and that's not nearly all*

Football is KILLING me this year.  I can't even bring myself to talk about the horrific performance my princesses, my McNabb, and my Eagles put on this weekend. 

So, I'm going to talk about socks!  Yay socks!

I've completed 4 of my sock of the month self assigned assignments (yeah, I'm totally slacking behind here), and I hadn't really decided what to do with them.  I didn't want to take pictures and post them as they were finished (except my favorite yarn ones!) because I wasn't sure if they were going to be gifts or not.

But, I basically decided they were not going to be gifts (well, not gifts for any particular reason), so I gave them all to J this weekend.  (She's always most appreciative of the socks I give her). 

I forgot to take pictures before giving them to her so I asked her to take some for me and send them to me (it's her payment for getting the socks) :-)  She sent quite the variety and I'm excited.  Some of the pictures are focused more on the exersaucer behind her feet...but you get the idea. 

These are the latest pair I completed.  I finished these on Friday.  My cousin came up to visit and she was so tired Friday night we just stayed in, watched stuff on TV, ate crappy food (it tasted good but was just really bad for us), and knitted.  It was a really nice, relaxing night and I was SO GLAD to finally finish these socks. 

I LOVED this yarn.  It's a wool/alpaca mix so it's really soft and fuzzy and ridiculously warm.  These are not socks you should wear on a daily basis (unless you have really poor circulation and your feet are always cold) because they will make your feet feel like they are in an oven.  These are socks you should wear when you are going to be outside for long periods of time in the winter.  Or sitting curled up on your couch on a winter's night.   

These are the socks I wrote about a while ago.  This was the yarn I absolutely loved and didn't want to use it because it was so pretty.  I still think these socks are so pretty! 

These are my least favorite socks of the four.  I really like the yarn colors and the variagated effects, but I was just really unhappy with how the sock itself turned out.  The cuff and leg is this weird bobbly looking thing (I like ribs and smooth looking socks...I have no idea why I thought this would be a pattern I would like) and the foot is just plain knitting all around.  Nothing to spice it up at all. 

This also led to a smaller foot than normal.  Even though it's the same size as the others (or at least the same number of rows), the sock feels tighter on the foot and not as comfortable.  So, I'm not as happy with this pair as I am with the others.   

But THESE on the other hand are my absolute favorite.  I love pretty much EVERYTHING about these socks.  The yarn is my favorite yarn.  It's super soft and squishy (both to work with and to wear).  I absolutely ADORE the colors and the striping pattern.  And I had a fun time with this pattern.  Of all the socks I've ever made, these are the closest I've come to keeping for myself. 

I just hope J likes them as much as I did.  :-) 

We also did some more work on Baby V's Halloween costume this weekend and I am so excited to see the finished project!!! 

*Soft Cell (it's on the radio right now at work...)

Friday, October 1, 2010

Well we'll float on good news is on the way*

Yesterday was a very un-fun day.  In fact, I was ready to cry by the time I finally got home. 

About once a month we send all our old product and materials to be incinerated at the landfill.  However, due to safety, security, and tax purposes someone from the company has to go be a witness to the destruction. 

Since I am still not really doing anything at work yet (oy it takes forever to get necessary access around here), I agreed to do it.  However, I agreed to it without knowing all the details.  Such as the fact that the landfill is almost 2 hours away.  Or, that it was scheduled for the day of a huge Nor'easter (how do you spell that?). 

Worst trip ever. 

The truck was super late in the morning, and going to the landfill itself sucked, but whatever.  Nothing truly awful, just really wet, so I had to drive a little slower than normal but nothing too bad. 

Even at the landfill, it wasn't awful.  It smelled awful and it took a lot longer than it should have to unload the truck due to the lack of protective bags inside the boxes.  A couple of boxes broke and the product was all over the inside of the truck requiring a lot more sweeping than should have been necessary but whatever. 

However, coming home was awful.  At this point, most of the local roads were completely flooded.  So I was either driving in water at least 6-8" deep, or I wasn't even allowed on the roads.  It took me almost an hour to go 8 miles to the highway. 

Then, once on the highway, the rain and wind picked up.  It was raining so hard I could barely see 6 inches in front of my car and the wind almost blew my car off the road a few times.  The trucks were getting blown just as badly, and one literally almost forced me off the road into a river. 

I was exhausted by the time I finally made it back.  I contemplated driving back to the hotel and not even returning to work, but I realized I had to return the truck seal (it's how we prove that nobody tampered with the truck between our plant and the landfill) and signed paper work.  Sigh. 

My trip should have taken about 4 hours.  It took 7.  This also meant I didn't get a chance to sign up for today's lunch.  So, today, I had to go extra sandwich shopping (they always have extra sandwiches made for people that forgot to sign up, but they're usually not the best).  I got stuck with tuna fish.  And seriously.  I don't like tuna sandwiches that much.  :-( 

However, at least my lunch yesterday rocked.  L recommended I go to Isaac's deli and get a pretzel sandwich.  There was one on my way back home, and I decided to stop and eat there during the worst of the rain.  I figured I'd rather sit in a restaurant than sit in my car not moving. 

She was right.  This sandwich was awesome.  It was so yummy I had to take a picture.

I also got a bowl of Yankee Crab Soup (oh my goodness...AMAZING!).  Seriously.  At least my lunch yesterday rocked. 

*Modest Mouse