Monthly Archives: June 2011

Celebrations

This week is a significant week in my family.

My sister-in-law (S2- because she is my second sister) has studied for months and months for an oral exam she had today; she studied through her normal school and work, through the birth of Buddy, through everything. S2 has completely dedicated herself to this exam – giving every free moment to studying. She has said “no” to many fun activities – a sacrifice to learn. And I am so proud of her. On top of this, S2 has continued to be a stellar wife and a spectacular mother. I am in awe of her discipline and perseverance. I feel like the luckiest girl in the world to have a sister like S2.

Tomorrow is my sister Sarah’s 28th birthday. Sarah is my older sister of 20 months. I have never known life without her. Sarah has taught me so much. She helped turn a shy, soft-spoken child into a confident, talkative adult. Sarah’s passion for life and unbelievable energy has always inspired me. Sarah has been one of the most influential people in my life. Sarah is my soul mate. I know Sarah unlike anyone else in the world. We have a connection I cannot describe; it is profound, kept in our hearts. Sarah knew what she wanted in life. She went full speed ahead and worked like a dog (holding 4 jobs while going to school) to have her dream – being on the radio. She is unexpected, entertaining, and incredibly smart. When people tell me I look like her, I have always taken it as the best compliment because she is beautiful. Sarah will drop everything in her crazy, jam-packed life to talk to me. When we talk, she gives me her full attention, devotion and love.

Sarah and me. (Thanks, Jay! http://www.7aphoto.com/)

And tomorrow, my dad is retiring after almost 26 years of service to the United States of America. My dad has given American citizens a gift I don’t even understand. He has sacrificed a large part of him to protect American citizens. He is the best you can find in his job, hands down. He has gone on countless secret missions to protect the US. These missions will never be publicized, they will never be on the news, and he will never meet the President and get the honor he deserved. His three children and one grandchild will never know the extent of his work. We will never truly understand all that he did for us. He will retire and go on with his new life, without civilians really knowing what he did for us. On top of his unbelievable service to the US, he has been the most incredible father I could have ever asked for. He has put my brother, sisters (S2 and Sarah) and me above his own thoughts, wants and needs. He loves us without condition or expectation. He gives and gives and does not ask for anything in return. He is a remarkable man and I cannot believe how blessed I am to have him as my father.

To you, S2, Sarah, Dad – I celebrate you.

(photo)

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A difficult thing about dating

Dating is challenging. We all know that. People who meet their husband/wife/partner/spouse in high school and are really truly happy 10 years later are just plain lucky. Heck, anyone who is happy with his or her spouse after 10 years is lucky.

Anyway. Some lucky people date very little before they find the person they want to be with. I’ve met these people. They are eternally optimistic about dating. They say super useless things like, “Dating is FUN” and “I just lllooovvveedd dating.”  Really? Oh, that’s right. They forget that the person they had all this fun dating is usually the person they are currently with.

And hell yes – it is really super fun to date someone you really like and who really likes you. It’s even more fun to fall in love with that person and build a life together.

Anyhow. That is not the case for many people. And those ‘many people’? They include me. I’ve been on many dates. Well, I guess it depends on how you define many. I have had a good amount of first dates. A lot. And, I’ve had a good handful of second dates. And, I’ve had just a few dates beyond that third date.

Here’s the thing: if you’ve gone on one date and you don’t click, or he’s socially awkward, or completely and totally inappropriate, or wildly offensive, you just shrug it off. You have a great story to tell your friends, have a good laugh (okay fine, depending how many bad dates you’ve had in a row, a good cry) and you move on. No gain, no freakin’ pain. It’s all good.

However. If you are lucky enough to make it past that elusive-not-very-common-third-date you risk the chance of pain. Not a “ohmygoshIthoughtIwasgoingtomarryhim!” hurt; a completely different kind of grief.

It took me my last two “past three dates” guys (read: not boyfriends) to realize this special type of hurt. When you’ve gotten to (or past) the three-date point (and probably before the 3 month mark, roughly) you really get use to the attention from another person.

You get use to the regular texts throughout the day. “What’s your day like?” “How are you this morning?” “What do you have going on tonight?

You miss the daily emails. “You will never believe what just happened! Okay, so …

And you really miss the phone calls. Those nightly phone calls – the recap of your days, the silly stories you share, and the information you glean as you learn about this person.

My friends are awesome. My family is fantastic. They give me loads of attention. At anytime I can text my beasties, (yep- I just said beasties. I’m cool like that) or call my family they are happy to chat or text about whatever I want. But this attention is not the same.

There’s nothing quite like seeing the name of someone you’re dating flash up as caller ID when your cell phone is ringing. Or better yet, when you check your phone after a night out with your friends you see a missed call and have a voice mail.  A voice mail. It just makes you feel so special.

So, when that ends – almost always abruptly – you feel a loss. You don’t necessarily miss that person (there was a pretty good reason you stopped seeing them, after all) but you miss that attention. You miss feeling special.

And, it’s particularly difficult when you are trying to get over that loss, and then the MF (read: swear words) calls you… to see how you are! (Of course). Wow. Now you realize you have to break-up with that person all over again. (Somehow your first message was not understood, apparently).

Hello, pain. I was just healing and here you come again.

But, fortunately, these little dating pains do pass and you feel better before you know it – until then… you just gotta feel the pain.

And drink lots of wine. 🙂

Hello, wine.

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Bad Dog at the Lake

Tahnee, being a Black Labrador, loves to swim. Last summer we spent many days at the river while she swam with some of her dog friends.  She would play fetch with a stick and could not get enough of swimming in the cool river.

Summer 2010, Tahn swimming in the river

I’ve been looking forward to take Tahn to the river all spring. Since it’s been a cold spring and now a super hot summer, it wasn’t until the last few weeks that it was actually warm enough to take her to the river. Unfortunately, the river is currently closed for swimming because the water is too high and fast. So, I decided to take her to the lake.

My dad drove to Sacramento to partake in said outing. He’s seen pictures and videos of Tahnee swimming, but never in real life. We were pretty excited. Watching Tahn swim is one of my favorite things to do. (Because she’s so dang cute!)

We drove about 40 minutes to the lake and paid the $10 fee to park. (Yes, $10 people). We got to the beach, and saw a huge sign No Dogs on the Beach. Well crap. What were we going to do? I decided to ask the men selling food if there was a place for dogs on the beach. (Everyone told me they took their dogs to the lake, I couldn’t believe we paid $10 and were going to turn around a go home…)

Fortunately, they instructed me to take my dog down the beach a ways where dogs were allowed. When we got to the “dog area” there were many dogs there and I could just hear Tahnee saying, “Doooogggg Paaaarrrrk!”

We let Tahn off her leash and she started to mill around in the water. A few other Labrador mixes joined her. It was nice. Then, the following happened. The best way to tell this story is to tell it with the time, so here it goes:

  • 12:30pm – Arrive at lake.
  • 12:35pm – Find No Dogs on the Beach sign.
  • 12:40pm – Arrive at the “dog area”.
  • 12:41pm – Let Tahn off the leash.
  • 12:42pm – I call Tahn to come back to the area we were at, away from the fisherman.
  • 12:42:30pm – I walk over to Tahn, and drag her back.
  • 12:43pm – Tahn goes over to another group of people, starts pestering them. My dad calls her.
  • 12:43:15pm – My dad gets Tahn and drags her back.
  • 12:44pm – Tahn starts playing in the water. She’s chasing the other dog, even goes after two sticks.
  • 12:46pm – Tahn goes nearby a group of people without a dog. My dad calls her.
  • 12:46:05pm – My dad drags her back.
  • 12:47pm – Tahn goes in the water again.
  • 12:47:50pm – Tahn gets excited, starts running around the beach, and right over the towels of the people with no dogs. (My dad and I are yelling at her a lot by now). (And quick side note: why would you go to the dog area with out a dog? And, get mad at us for having a dog?!)
  • 12:48pm – My dad captures Tahn.
  • 12:49pm – I put Tahn’s leash on her and we leave.

Oh yes, that’s right. We weren’t even on the beach for 10 minutes before we had to leave because our dog was misbehaving so badly. Tahn was by far the worst dog there. She didn’t come once when we called her. She acted like she couldn’t even hear us.

Now, it is not uncommon for Tahn to ignore not hear me.  From time to time, she flat out ignores me doesn’t hear me at all. But Tahn has never, ever once ignored my dad.

Her behavior was beyond embarrassing. We were pretty upset. Not only had my dad drove up an hour and a half to see this, but we drove an additional 40 minutes and paid $10 to have Tahn swim for one minute and disturb everyone on the dog beach.

Back at my apartment. Tahn was sorry for being a bad dog...

When we got back to Sacramento, I decided we should walk to a nearby dog-friendly bar and have a beer.

Tahn was a very good girl at the bar. (Do you see the sand on her nose?)

Then, my dad left and I gave Tahn a bath.

All clean after her bath

Next time, I’ll wait until the river is safe to swim and take Tahn to a secluded place where she cannot bother anyone. (Especially the idiots people sitting in the dog area getting mad at me because my dog ran across their towel. Sorry Lady, I couldn’t stop the bad dog).

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Filed under Family, Tahnee

Winning! (Or not a post title that is not a quote from Charlie Sheen…)

Today, I actually WON something.

A couple of weeks ago, one of my favorite blogs, The Mouthy Housewives had a book give away. Not only are The Mouthy Housewives advice hilarious, but they actually give great advice. Yes, they actually answered one of my questions. (No, I will not tell you which one. Let’s just say, it’s one of the few that don’t include children.)

The book is I’m Kind of a Big Deal: And Other Delusions of Adequacy by Stephanie Wilder-Taylor. Stephanie was a guest Mouthy Housewife and I just loved her advice so I entered.

See?

And guess what? I won!

They even linked my blog. I love it!

I haven’t every won anything before. It was very exciting to read at 6:45 this morning over my cereal.

So go check ’em out. Especially if you need advice. Or a good laugh.

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Filed under Blogging, Fun Things

Taking a minute

After a very long, sad, uneventful, dull, end of winter and most of spring, I now have a jammed packed social calendar.

From the months of January until the middle of May, I was beyond bored. It seemed that everyone wanted to stay in with their significant others, and I, being single and all, found myself alone most Friday and Saturday nights. At first I enjoyed it. Living alone for the first time, I never had peace and quiet on the weekends. However, after a few weeks, the peace and quiet was no longer fun. Me, the 26-year-old who is usually in bed by 10pm was dying to go out. Dancing. To a Bar. To anyone’s house. I was anxious to get the hell out of the apartment that I love.

Since my friends were hard to nail down, I decided to join a Friday night bowling league. (Because I loved my dodgeball league so freakin’ much). Well, that was a disaster.

But, oddly enough, after my first weekend of bowling, my social calendar picked up. No, correction: it went from non-existent to full speed, in over drive. Normally, I would credit this shift in my friends because of the warm weather starting up and everyone wanted to get out of their houses and socialize.

Except, it was the end of May and beginning of June and it was 50 degrees outside and still raining. I spent Memorial Day Weekend in the rain. The following weekend, the first weekend in June, I spent in Napa County wine tasting for my dear friend’s birthday in the rain. (That was a fantastic weekend – full of gluttony). The following weekend, the second weekend in June, I spent at Bella Vista at a “start of summer” party. (That was truly wonderful – yet another weekend of gluttony). Then their was Britney. Then, last weekend, I spent one night in San Francisco, with one of my favorite people, (and some of my new favorite people), trying to not act like a hipster in the Mission District. The next day was Father’s Day, celebrating with my dad, my Grandma and my brother and sister-in-law (Buddy‘s parents).

And guess what? I have three more jammed packed weekends ahead of me. In fact, most of my weekends the rest of the summer are full of social activities.

I am not complaining.

I am actually overjoyed about all the fun I’ve had and I am looking forward to more. But, here’s the thing: previously my weekends were very mellow and I got to relax and recharge. Now that my weekends are so full, I am sleepy all week. So sleepy, I’m afraid to admit, that at 7:30pm tonight I almost fell asleep.

I also blame my sleepiness on the extreme 102-degree weather.

I am not complaining.

I was over the rain in April, so I welcome the heat. I welcome the hot nights, where (like I did on Friday night with Jessica), I can sit outside at 10pm enjoying a cold beer in a t-shirt and be perfectly warm.

But, I think my body has to get use to the heat. Also because of the heat, I haven’t been taking Tahn on any walks. We both miss them. Sorry Tahn. But it is just too dang hot. Even at 8pm.

So now I am taking a minute.

And it feels pretty good.

(photo source)

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Filed under Dodgeball, Family, Fun Things, My Apartment, Tahnee, Vacation

Brittany’s review of Britney

On Thursday night, I went to Britney Spears’s Femme Fatale concert.

The last time I went to a Britney concert was around nine years ago. I was still in high school, and I went with my older brother and older sister. The concert was in an outdoor venue in the Bay Area, and our seats were very far away from the stage.

This time around, I got my tickets through Groupon – originally $100 tickets for a bargain price of $52. Even though I am on a very tight budget, I just couldn’t pass it up.

When we got into the arena, I almost died. Although I am not a huge Britney fan, I still would love to see her up close and personal. Our seats were amazing! We were in the “lower level” just behind the floor seats. We could see the stage so well, that looking at the Jumbo Tron was usually a worst view then we had (unless of course, it was a close up).

After the openers, Britney finally came on stage around 9:15pm. Using Britney’s set list, I will go through my review of the concert.

First, there was a video of Britney being chased by a SWAT team, trying to escape them. She shot guns, ran around, and was eventually captured.

1. ‘Hold It Against Me’

Britney came out on stage in a silver, sparkling bikini with black fishnet stockings and ankle boots. Britney was in a little jail cell along with some other women dancers also in little jail cells. Men dressed as policemen (okay, more like policemen strippers) danced around the jail cells keeping the women in them. She performed the first few numbers in and around the cell. Her energy was disappointing. Considering this song is a very upbeat dance song, she did very little dancing. (In fact, she did very little dancing for the first three numbers). But, she looked great.

2. ‘Up N’ Down’

Again, Britney was in and around the jail cell. She stayed in the back of the stage, so she was pretty far away from me. She was finally released from the jail cell and put that pesky male stripper policeman in the jail cell.

3. ‘3’

‘3’ was a great number – the best so far. She finally came down the stage, and talked a little to the crowd. Britney seemed pretty nervous and held back during the first two songs, she started to warm up a little bit on this song.

4. ‘Piece of Me’

Unfortunately, I don’t particularly remember this song. This is one of the few songs that night that I didn’t know, so it was unmemorable.

Then, Britney left the stage and another video came on. This video was of a man in a room full of very old movie making equipment, an old typewriter, and an old radio microphone trying to “hunt down” Britney. They flashed parts of Britney’s music videos. I wasn’t sure if he hated Britney and that’s why he wanted to kill her, or if he loved her so much that he wanted to kill her…

5. ‘Big Fat Bass’

At the beginning of this number, a bunch of basses came out on stage. One very tall and large bass and a bunch of smaller basses. I expected Britney to emerge from the larger bass, but she surprised me when she climbed out a smaller one. Britney was wearing a bustier covered in black lace with black fishnet stocking and different ankle boots. Britney spent most of the time around the basses, climbing on different ones.

6. ‘How I Roll’

Now this is my favorite song on Britney’s new album, Femme Fatale. I just love the way in sounds, and how every time I hear I want to dance. I was so excited this was in Britney’s set list and I couldn’t wait for her to perform it. Unfortunately, it was just mediocre. Again, Britney stayed mostly in the back of the stage and the number didn’t have much energy.

7. ‘Lace and Leather’

This is another performance I don’t really remember. Again, I didn’t recognize the song, so the performance didn’t really stick with me.

8. ‘If U Seek Amy’

Either in this song (or maybe the song before it…) a pink, almost mini Cooper like car emerged from the stage. Britney and her dancers drove the “car” downstage to the very front of the stage (very close to me!) The “car” turned into a mini stage of it’s own, with the doors and hood turning into stairs. In the back of the “car”, there was a chair and a pole attached to the back of the chair.

9. ‘Gimme More’

At this point, the dancers grabbed some microphones and said they were looking for a “volunteer.” They chose a young man with an “I love Britney” t-shirt from the floor seats and he went up on the “car” and sat in the chair. Then, Britney sang about 45 seconds of ‘Gimme More’ while seductively dancing for him. It ended with her using the pole (behind his chair) to hoist herself up in the air behind him, and she wrapped her legs around him. Yes. She wrapped her legs around him. I could just feel all the men in the audience dying with jealously. Then, the “car”, with all the dancers and this lucky “volunteer” sped off stage.

Next, another video came on. It was the same guy in the room plotting to “get” Britney.

10. ‘(Drop Dead) Beautiful’ (feat. Sabi)

Britney came back on stage this time in a gold bikini, again with the black fishnet stocking and a different pair of ankle boots. In this song, while she sang and walked around the stage, on the screens behind her were pictures of naked men, showing every part of a man’s body – well, except one part…

11. ‘He About to Lose Me’

This song is a great song, but I don’t particularly remember it…

12. ‘Boys (Remix)’

I was really excited for this song and this is when Britney started picking up her energy. It was a remix, so different from the original and it was very short.

13. ‘Don’t Let Me Be the Last to Know’

‘Don’t Let Me Be the Last to Know’ was the only slow song that Britney did. She had a hand microphone and sat on a swing the lifted high into the air. She actually sang this song and did a really great job. When she was up in the air, one of her dancers was under the swing, hanging on to ropes doing a bunch of aerobatic moves. It was really cool.

Then, Britney left the stage once more and the man came back on the screen plotting to kill her.

14. ‘Baby One More Time’

At this point, Britney came back on stage in jean shorts and a black (bra?) with pink sparkles on it. (It was cute). She was dancing to a man who was acting like a snake charmer. I was very excited! I thought ‘I’m a Slave 4 U’ was about to come on. Nope. But, it was a great song, ‘Baby One More Time’ – and it only lasted about a minute.

15. ‘S&M’ and 16. ‘Trouble for Me’

I think that at this point in the concert, Britney really picked it up. She was running all over the stage and dancing. She seemed to be really enjoying herself.

17. ‘I’m a Slave 4 U’

A great song of the night but I really wished that she would have had a snake. Somehow, this song just isn’t right with out a snake…

18. ‘Burning Up’ (Madonna cover)

In this number, a huge guitar came out on stage. Britney climbed the guitar and sat in the middle of it. The guitar moved back and forth (kind of like a very slow mechanical bull), while Britney danced.

19. ‘I Wanna Go’

I have to say that ‘I Wanna Go’ was my favorite song of the night. It was the least choreographed, and the most Britney interacted with the audience. Britney’s dancers brought up fans from the floor seats to dance with Britney. There was so much energy in the arena – I think everyone wished they were up on stage with Britney. After the song, while the fans were leaving the stage, one of the fans jumped on Britney and hugged her. She reacted really well, after pushing him off, she turned to the audience, put her hands up and said, “Did you just see that?

20. ‘Womanizer’

‘Womanizer’ was the “finale” song. It is one of my favorite’s of Britney’s and she did really fabulous. By this time in the night, all her nervousness was gone and she was dancing a lot more.

After ‘Womanizer’ Britney left the stage and the man in the room with the video equipment came back on the stage. Britney crept up behind him, and covered his mouth with a cloth and he passed out. Then she tied him up and I assumed killed him (because the screen said something along the lines of Britney the Assassin.)

21. ‘Toxic’  and 22. ‘Till the World Ends’

Britney and her crew came back and really brought it home with the closing numbers. She danced the entire time and the energy was unreal!

 

Overall, the concert was really, really great. I had so much fun. It was nice to see Britney perform, and she seemed like she was doing pretty well. (Not head-shaving status anymore).  I would definitely recommend you go and see her concert if she comes to your area!

(photo credit)

___

This Britney Spears post is dedicated to my wonderful brother – the biggest Britney fan I know who has patiently waited for this post. Happy First Father’s Day. I love you.

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Filed under Fun Things, Music

Smoke Alarms and Tahnee Lynn

Last night, Number 3 came over for dinner.

I’ve been really trying to eat what’s in my fridge before I buy more food, so I had to come up with a dinner I don’t normally make. My friend Jessica gave me some rainbow chard from her garden yesterday and suggested adding it to pizza. (Although I love the idea of rainbow chard, I can’t get past its bitterness…)

All I had to do was buy pizza dough and cheese and ta-da! I would have pizza.

If only it was that simple.

It took a while to prepare the chard for the pizza. Following Jessica‘s specific instructions, I caramelized the stems of the chard with onion, and then sautéed the leaves of the chard. Then, I took out the pizza dough from Trader Joe’s and I rolled the pizza out on a lightly floured surface (using Number 3’s rolling pin – how do I not have a rolling pin?!?!) and put it on a well oiled cookie sheet.

I assembled all the yummy ingredients and put the pizza into a 500-degree oven.

About five minutes later the smoke alarm went off.

(Growing up, when my grandma cooked us one of her delicious dinners, the smoke alarm always went off. When it did, we would all yell, “Dinner’s ready!”)

I felt compelled to yell with joy, “Dinner’s ready!” But I didn’t. Instead, I grabbed a dishtowel and ran over to the smoke alarm and fanned away the smoke. Quickly, the smoke alarm stopped sounding and I casually walked to the nearby window to open it up.

Then the smoke alarm went off again.

This time, the smoke alarm was not going off. In fact, it seemed the more I fanned it, the worst it got. Fortunately, Number 3 was on it, and she ran around my apartment opening all the windows and the doors.

Frantically, (afraid my neighbors would soon become concerned) I yelled to Number 3 to “Turn off the oven!!!!!”

When Number 3 went to turn off the oven, smoke was billowing out. She could barely see to find the off switch. Smoke was filling my apartment very quickly.

The smoke alarm didn’t just sound a high piercing beep. It also said “FIRE” after each beep. It was getting unbearable.

My very kind and diligent landlord came running down the stairs, “Brittany?!?!?! Is everything okay?”

“Yes!” I embarrassingly yelled. “Just some oil is burning in the oven! I’m sorry!!

(Do you remember how I said before that I put the pizza on a “well oiled cookie sheet”? Well. Apparently, it was too well oiled).

With my landlord coming in to help, (he took the smoke alarm down off the ceiling and took the battery out- genius!) I all of a sudden started to worry about how Tahn was doing. (Number 3, my landlord and I were really suffering from the smoke).

I looked outside and saw Tahn. Peeing. Tahn apparently didn’t enjoy the smoke, so she let herself outside. (And, while she was outside, she might as well pee…) Then, Tahn just sat on the dirt, looking back up at the apartment.

Of course, Number 3, my landlord and I thought this was hilarious. “Thanks a lot, Tahnee! Don’t worry about us! Or our home! Just save yourself!!”

My landlord brought down an industrial fan and within ten minutes, most of the crazy smoke was gone.

At this time, Tahn joined us back inside.

____

Number 3 and I did end up enjoying a delicious pizza (that was not stuck to the pan, thankyouverymuch) and along with a half bottle of wine. Maybe I’ll get myself a pizza stone before I make pizza again. And a rolling pin.

(photo source)

What’s your worst smoke alarm story?

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Filed under Food!, My Apartment, Tahnee

Health, Fitness and Food Blogs

First, it started with Lauren.

I met Lauren my freshman year of college back east. Lauren and I became good friends our second semester (she was a sophomore, and I was a freshman). She was my friend who was super smart, (she always beat me on tests), had a great music play-lists, was so great to be around, always talked about her running, and was a vegetarian.

I'm on the left, Lauren's on the right. This is circa 2004, people. On our way to my first and only trip to NYC.

Um. We're posing, people. It's Central Park. What else do you do in Central Park? (We're in the middle - Lauren on the left, I'm on the right).

Unfortunately, the college we attended wasn’t for me, so after my first year I moved back to California. Lauren stayed at school and graduated with a degree in Psychology, then ended up getting her Master’s in Public Health. Lauren and I stayed in touch via Facebook, and one day I saw a posting about her blog. Lauren’s blog is about running, health, and eating yummy and healthy foods. I occasionally read her blog, and was inspired to create a blog of my own. (Not a health or fitness blog, clearly).

As I became a blogger, I read Lauren’s blog more often as well as some other blogs to get inspiration. Then, I read this post. Lauren and her running buddies did a 2 day, all night relay race – yes, someone on their team was continually running. Throughout the night. It was insane! And inspiring. And motivating.

Through that post I found some of Lauren’s running friend’s blogs.

And this is where my new obsession with Heath, Fitness, and Food Blogs began.

It all started innocently, really. I enjoyed reading Becky’s and Tina’s blogs. They seemed like nice women, and they knew my friend Lauren. So I technically knew them.

And in their blogs, they have tons of great recipes, weight loss stories, and other inspirational nuggets that make me want to get up at 5:00am to go work out.

(Un)fortunately, I started reading every single Heath, Fitness and Food Blog that came my way. (Un)fortunately, most of the women who comment on Lauren, Becky and Tina’s blogs are also health-nuts who write similar blogs. (Un)fortunately, I started to read more and more each day.

Like my obsession with Facebook, I quickly became addicted with my favorite blogger’s post updates. I would check their blogs multiple times a day, waiting for a new post. One of the things some of the bloggers do is post what food they eat that day – let me just say I LOVE seeing what they eat everyday. Thus, many of them post blogs as many as 3 times a day – so I kept checking back for the next post. It started to become a real problem.

Good news, my friends. My preoccupation with Health, Fitness and Food Blogs has calmed down. The reason? Google Reader. It automatically updates me when each new post arrives and organizes the blogs all together in one nice, neat, little package. (It is way better then RSS feeds. It will change your life. I promise you!)

The other good news? Reading all of these blogs has motivated me to do two things I haven’t been doing a lot lately:

  1. Exercise regularly
  2. Cook at home

I had been eating out a lot lately because I was so sick of cooking for myself and I was so sick of the food I knew how to make. But, I have been encouraged by all the blogs! I have so many recipes to choose from that I just can’t wait to cook each night.

And tomorrow? My lazy self will get up when my 5:00am alarm clock goes off to go to the gym instead of hitting snooze like I’ve done so many times before. 🙂

I guess my new addiction isn’t so bad after all.

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Filed under Blogging, Exercise, Food!

Being Aunt Brittany

Not Buddy. (But he sure is cute, isn't he?)

Just shy of six months ago, I became an Aunt. My brother and sister-in-law had a beautiful little boy, whom I’ll call Buddy.

When I learned of my sister-in-law’s pregnancy just over a year ago, I was elated with joy. I love children – I always have – ever since I was a little girl and was the mother of my dolls. I started helping my older sister baby-sit at the age of 11, and continued to baby-sit (and nanny) until I turned 21. At 21, I was making a good $40 an hour being a nanny, but it wasn’t fun for me anymore. I realized that taking care of stranger’s children was hard – I (usually) fell in love with the children, but (usually) not the parents. I decided the only children I would take care from then on would be of parents that I loved – and for no payment.

Anyway – back to a year ago – the news of my brother and sister-in-law’s baby. I think my brother and sister-in-law are such great people, and I was so happy that they were going to have a child. But even past that, I was so happy to be an Aunt.

I have dreamed about being an Aunt just as long as I have dreamed about being a mother. So, for me, this baby – my sweet Buddy – is a dream come true.

When Buddy was born, and I first got to hold him, I had an overwhelming sensation of love. Unconditional love. I unconditionally love my family and close friends (and of course, Tahn!) but this love was different. When I held Buddy, my brain was flooded with an indescribable amount of joy and happiness; almost like a drug – a high – from the baby. The only way I can explain this phenomenal experience is because I love my brother and sister-in-law so much. (And do you know what? Every time I hold Buddy I still feel sensation. Every time).  🙂

Anyway. I was visiting my family this weekend and I got to spend most of the day hanging out with Buddy. It was great as usual. Buddy is a very happy baby, and just loves hanging out and playing. Spending time with Buddy today put me in a great mood and it gave me that extra nudge to get out of my funk.

I thought it was interesting that tonight when I got home, (after spending the day with Buddy) I read a portion from Elizabeth’s Gilbert’s Committed about being an Aunt. I thought it summed up how I feel so well that I would share it here with you.

Jane Austen once wrote to a relative whose first nephew had just been born: “I have always maintained the importance of Aunts as much as possible. Now that you have become an Aunt, you are a person of some consequence.”

(photo credit)

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Funkiness and Friday Night

Ever since returning from the Kinetic Grand Championship, I have been in sort of a funk.

  1. My apartment had a weird, funky smell when I first came home from my trip. I suspect the kitchen sink. (Everything else was clean, I swear!)
  2. I picked up Tahn from my dad’s on Tuesday and she was in such a funk – for days – and is finally better. Tahn was so upset with me for leaving her last weekend and was in a weird place. In her despair, she chewed up four pairs of my socks! (And she never chews my stuff).
  3. Why, you ask, did Tahn have access to four pairs of my socks? I had an enormous laundry pile on my bedroom floor. Why, you ask, did I have an enormous pile of laundry on my bedroom floor? Because my dryer is/was broken, so I couldn’t do laundry. And all those clothes from camping  smelled very funky (especially those that went with me into the Humboldt Bay – but more on that later…)
  4. During my camping trip/ crazy weekend in Humboldt County, one of the coolers in my car leaked and soaked my trunk. Alas, now a nice mildewy smell has permeated my car.

All of these funky things has put me in a funky mood. My three-day-work week felt like ten days long. I missed spending time with Tahnee, but every night this week I had plans I really couldn’t get out of. And, I am busy all weekend.

Except tonight.

Tonight I had bowling. And, last time I went to bowling, I had a lousy time.

So, I opted out for the evening. (Don’t worry, I’m not quitting. I’m going back next week).

I decided to stay in, make a yummy dinner, clean my apartment, bake cookies, and most importantly, hang out with Tahn.

So, that’s what I did. And it felt great.

Goodbye, funkiness.

____

Photo-roll of the cookie baking: 🙂

My pretty Kitchen Aid mixer. Oh, how I love thee.

Snickerdoodle Batter. YUM.

Tahn helped. (Seriously, this is where she sits when I cook/bake/do dishes. She's very helpful).

Snickerdoodles out of the oven. (I kinda made them too big, thus, they are squares).

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Filed under Food!, My Apartment, Tahnee