Thursday, June 30, 2011

Family First

Wanna say a big thank you to my sister, Sarah, from Debt Dumpers Anonymous for this guest post....  I couldn't have said it better!

Having had so much family time this week, I have been reminded of a few things.

I’ll start this off by saying, I have been watching A LOT of reality television lately.


And I’m finding a theme….

A theme that oddly enough is coming closer and closer to hitting my corner of the world.

Let me start by introducing you to someone…

This is my grandma.

Oops. Sorry. This is my grandma.

Despite my little confusion, She's pretty much our Queen Mother.

She rules the roost around here.

She raised my mom.

Oops. Sorry. Obviously, I'm easily confused today.

This is my mom.

But in reality, Caroline Manzo is pretty much my mother's personality twin.

If you have ever indulged in RH of NJ, which I'm am not admitting or denying, you'll hear Mrs. Manzo say, "It's family. You just do it."

Sure she says it while in the midst of a lot of New Jersey style turmoil and heartache and obvious family conflict….

But it sooooo reminds me of something my mom would say.

Actually, I'd like to have a dollar for every time my mother has said those words or something eerily similar.

My Nanny & my mother both have the same goals in life.

1. Please the Lord.

2. Put their families first.

That's it. No other bucket list that I know of.

No make a million and retire to some luxurious home in the South of France.

No climb Mount Everest or see the Sistine Chapel.

None of that.

They would both be entirely happy going to their graves with nothing more than the knowledge that they pleased their Lord and they put their family first.

My Nanny has sacrificed time, possessions, and finances – among other things – for one purpose: HER FAMILY.

Lucky for me, she instilled those same values in her daughter, and my mother has tried to teach her children those same things.

Family first. Period.

Having come from that kind of background, it’s so easy to forget that not everyone was raised that way. You wouldn’t believe how many people I have watched allow the pettiest of things to get in the way of family relationships. I have seen families torn apart by things that should be no more an issue than a fly on the wall.

My sister and I have this saying, when watching this kind of poor behavior unfold (especially New Jersey style) , “Well, they weren't raised by Nanny…" – because not everyone has grown up with the awareness that family comes first. Not everyone is raised to have a conscience that would not allow anyone, much less their own family, to hurt when it is within their power to fix it.

Truthfully, I can't say that either of us as good as Mom or our Queen Nanny, but selfishness…egotism…sheer ignorance of the feelings of others is literally foreign to us.

Yes, Friends go a notch down.

Wants get shifted to the side.

Life gets rearranged, because family comes first.

In the world we grew up in, family is not disposable.

You only get one.

If you ruin your relationship with them, you don't get another one.

My nanny and my mother have kept their family together in the midst of heartbreak, turmoil, suffering, and pain by keeping the important things first.

And I realize now how lucky I have been to have been taught these amazing principles.

And in 30 years when my children are grown, I hope that they too understand the importance of family.

That they too understand that the feelings of people around them are important.

That they understand that selfishness has no place in family or friendships.

That Jesus comes first…

And family comes next….

Because when the dust settles, those are the only ones you can really count on.

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

My Dustbunnies are Bigger than Yours

So, a friend and I were having a discussion about messy houses...

More or less, I was whining about how messy my house is.

I know.

Be shocked.

Me?  Whining?

Unheard of!

But I have a reason to whine about it, I promise I do.

I don't know if you heard or not, but I am having visitors today. 

A houseful of them.

And my house is so messy.

You may have also heard about the men in my life.

Specifically, this one.

And this one.

And we dare not forget this one.

They are some messy, messy men.




But very, very messy.
This one likes to lead me on treasure hunts for the matches to his socks.

This one likes to watch me pull pieces of corn out of my hair. 

He laughs.


Like Santa at Christmas.

Because he likes to throw things. 

And food, or in this case - corn, is a thing.

We are working on this....

And this one...

This one likes to HIDE food.

And track in leaves.

And grass.

And I won't even talk about his ability shed hair in every corner of my home.

I mean, for real. 

Does he go over in the corners and brush his hair with one of those fuzz-inducing brushes and then pick the hair out of it and throw it in the corner?

Otherwise, how does it get there?

And how does it get so ginormous?

But then there's me...

Let's just say that I'm the neat one....

Which is really so sad....

Because look at what kind of example I am setting with my frizzy hair and glasses....

But let's face it, I just don't have the time or energy to chase down socks, pick up every single kernel of corn, and sweep the corners every single day.

Because I am still busy just trying to get my bed made, my dishwasher emptied, and my silverware sorted.

Sound familiar?  Or am I the only one?

Please say I'm not the only one....

Monday, June 27, 2011

We Was Happy Because We Was Together.

Can you even believe that it's Monday again?

I know I can't.

My weekend was quite the blur of reading, cleaning, and laundry-doing.

You see, my brother is getting married next Saturday.

And tomorrow, my entire family will be making the first leg of their trip to the wedding by driving to my house.

After which, we will all continue the journey.


All 11 hours of it.

With 4 kids under the age of 4 years old.

I still am not sure what we were thinking when we planned this trip.

Except perhaps the old adage that my Grandma Wright* would say in almost every story of her childhood.

"We was happy cause we was together."

Perhaps we think that no matter the chaos or the car sickness or the crying baby(ies), we will be happy because we are together.

What does this mean for you?

Probably nothing.

But POSSIBLY long excerpts of crazy, car-sick Leah posts sent from my iPad - so they will be photo-less.

Be excited.

It's gonna be a fun week!

*Remember my Grandma Wright

Friday, June 24, 2011

Weekly Weigh-In # 28

Well, look at this! 

2 weeks in a row, I am admitting the woes of my weight loss battle!

But alas, I don't have a picture for you.

Just a reticent memory from a dark corner of my mind that at 6:30 really shouldn't have still been a dark corner.

Someone overslept....

So the big number?


Up from last week's weigh in.

But that's still less than 2 weeks ago...

Is it frustrating to be up?


But is it normal?

For me.


With the big wedding and a lovely - very skinny bridesmaid's dress a week away - I will be working hard to keep any extra poundage off!

Wish me luck!

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Helpful How To: Keeping It Between the Lines.

Be excited.

I have an actual HHT for you today! 

I know.

It's all I can do to contain my excitement.

I am practically bouncing out of my chair!

I revealed it this weekend on Facebook, so forgive me if you've already seen it....

If you haven't, you'll be wishing you had.

Because it's total life changing stuff.

If you have been reading for a while, you may remember seeing that I purchased a rug for my kitchen back in April.

Along with some other amazingly cheap stuff that I found at my favorite store.

And if you are too lazy to click any of those links, here's the rug. 

In it's original form.


So vanilla.

So bland.

So in need of SOMETHING.

Enter Emily's amazing template that she brilliantly used on her walls.


If my husband wouldn't KILL me I would so do the same thing....

But since he clearly would.... 

I opted for something more simple.

I printed off her template, grabbed a sharpie and got to work.


Let's all "oo" and "ah" about how amazing I look without makeup in my tube top and with all the frizzy hair.

It's glam that puts Britney Spears to shame, I know.

The key to using a tiny little stencil like this is to keep it straight.  It was easier for me since I had the lines of the bamboo to keep me straight.

But for another project, I'd have totally pencilled in a straight line for my guide.

And to make it really complicated, level the space between the lines, I lined up the stencil with the old lines and used the ends as spacer's then adjusted my stencil to that arean before outlining.

It sounds much more complicated than it is, I promise.

Less than 2 hours of work artistic flair later....

I had this.

By no means am I going to pretend like this project is amazing.

Or finished.

But it's a great starting point. 

Eventually, I would like to paint it.

Like Jen over at Tatertots and Jello did with hers.

But as it's taken me almost 3 months just to find the time to stencil in the pattern, I have absolutely ZERO grand illusions of me getting this done any time soon.

In the meantime, what do you think? 



Think it's stupid?

Or brilliant?

I mean seriously, a $19 rug and a sharpie for a touch of glam?

I'll be sharing this one over at Amanda's Weekend Bloggy Reading Linkup Party.

Weekend Bloggy Reading

You should join me!

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

You Should Know

I have an amazing Helpful How-To for you today.


Blogger's being a royal pain in my royal patoot.

So until they reconnect me with the ability to upload pictures, my helpful how-to won't be so helpful.

In the meantime, let's discuss my amazing skills at Words With Friends.

Which has recently turned into an I-don't-care-who's-winning-I-just-want-a-word situation.

If I have vowels I don't have consonants.

If I have consonants, I don't have high point ones.

And if I have high point ones, I have no vowels to pair them with.

And by the time I have high point consonants AND vowels to pair with them, there is no longer any space left on the board for me to play them.

Dumb words with friends.

At this rate, it's amazing if I get a word over 20 points.

Much less anything higher.

While I am bragging/complaining, I should probably make reference to the fact I am a saint.

Like a legit saint.

Last week one of my worthy WWF opponents totally trumped (should that be capitalized?  Like Donald Trump?  I do not understand chess that in fact a chess term?  I am so clueless....) me extremely early on in the game with a 120 point word.

While I was still struggling to get consonants.

ANY consonants.

And rather than resigning...

I played the game.

And lost by about 253 points.

And then made sure to chat *that person* up about my worthiness as an opponent for not caving.

Yeah.  I am pretty amazingly humble at times.

Also, if that didn't prove my saint hood....

Yesterday, I came home to find that my husband did not shut Little Man's bedroom door before leaving for work yesterday morning.

Which doesn't sound like a big deal, right?

Until you realize that my dog likes to eat diapers.

Especially poop diapers.

And I came home to find no less than 3-4 poop diapers shredded into a million pieces and engrained into Little Man's rug.

And I had to clean it up.

While managing to not puke.

While managing to keep an 18 month old from playing in it.

While managing to not kill ANYONE.

And Techy still got to sleep on his pillow last night.


I have arrived.

You know with the exception of humility....

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Accidental Friendships

It's so funny how life is.

Especially life nowadays.

I would say that over the last year, I have gained more friends than any other season of my life.

Let me start by saying that I am very lucky to have amazing family members, who just happen to be some of my bestest friends ever.

My sister.

My cousins.

My mom.

All amazing.

All excellent friends.

But then there are some of you guys.

You know who you are.

People who I don't get to see every day.

Some of you I haven't seen for weeks, months, or years.

But who, through the beauty of modern technology, I have been able to keep up with.

To stay in contact with.

To watch you plan or to help you plan your weddings.

To watch your babies and grandbabies grow.

To help you decide which color to paint your kitchen cabinets.

To tell you all about the woes of self-waxing and help you decide if you are brave enough to try it.

To make fun of your our ridiculous obsession with Katniss Everdeen.

Not to mention a certain vampire....

And to just love you.

And I just wanna say thanks for that!

But seriously, would it kill 2 of you to click that follow button at the right hand side of the screen?  I mean, I have been sitting at 48 followers for weeks and I am way overdue for 50.... 

Just saying.

Monday, June 20, 2011


As crazy as this guy is...

He makes a pretty incredible Daddy to this guy

Happy Belated Father's Day, Techy!

I love you!

Friday, June 17, 2011

Weekly Weigh In # 27

It's almost been a month since my last WWI post.

Sad, I know. 

But it isn't because I have completely given up the hope of ever losing weight.

It's mostly because life has been busy.

But for the record, I have still been weighing.

Just to redeem myself...

This is last week's weigh in...

Not great, but not bad....

And I am still working out like a fiend.

After all, I have a bridesmaid's dress to fit into in like 15 days.

So here goes nothing...

Do you see that!?

See what it says!??!!

One - Three - SEVEN!!!!

Yes, I see the Point Eight....

But what's it matter?!

I haven't been this close to my goal since April!

And it feels good to know my hard work is finally paying off.

So I think I'll go reward myself with chocolate....

Just kidding.

I'll be busting my butt with a workout as soon as possible....

Because I wanna see One Three Six before the big ole wedding hoopla.

Wish me luck!

Thursday, June 16, 2011

My Honest Opinion: Domino's Put their Game Face ON!

Have you seen these things?

There is a Domino's flyer on my water cooler at work that taunts me with this picture.

Every. Single. Day.

And every single day, I walk away drooling.

Not because it just looks good.

Oh. No.

Because I have tried the magic that is Domino's Pasta Bowls.

Only once.

But that was enough.

This thing is amazing.

In my mind, this is what food in heaven will taste like.

Only I won't have to worry about gaining weight from it.

Or tipping the delivery guy.

Cause...wait for it...the price has already been paid.

Nice, huh?

Ok, Baptist Eternity jokes aside....

This pasta bowl is pretty amazing.

But since my new goal in life is to look like Melissa Gorga after 3 kids...

NOTE: I look like this and I only have 1.

Um, yeah.

I guess I will have to hold off partaking in any of these delectable pasta bowls until eternity.

Or...until plastic surgery is free.

So Domino's, I just want to thank you for not giving up when some customer named Debbie from Wisconsin said she didn't like your sauce. 

Your dedication has me drooling day after day with delicious fantasies of your delectable goodies.

That I won't get to enjoy again until eternity.

My Honest Opinion: The Discipline Dilemma

I don't think I have talked about Little Man woes for a while.

That's probably because until recently, there haven't been many.

Or the ones that were there were not really worth complaining about....

But now....

Oh, how things have changed.

I'm going to admit some very ridiculous things to you today.

I expect you not to laugh.  (too loudly)

In my opinion, disciplining children, or rather - knowing HOW TO DISCIPLINE your children - may very well be impossible. 

It's like the fountain of youth....

Completely unreachable.


Unless you have the map.  That someone burned.

And unless maybe you squeeze a tear out of a mermaid while she's trying to eat you.


It's that hard.

I despise it.

So many variables.

Not to mention a life sentence of knowing you are responsible for screwing your kid up.  FOREVER.


For instance, Little Man's big thing right now is to say "NO!" to everything.


You could ask him if he wanted to go outside and swing on the swing (his favorite thing, btw) and the kid would say "NO!"

You could ask him if he wanted pizza and chicken nuggets forever (more fave's) and he'll nod his head as firmly as possible from side to side and shout, "NO!"

Everything is "No!"

"Wanna go see Zoe?"


"Wanna go swim in the pool?"


"Wanna poke something with a stick?"
(Seriously.  This happened last night.  In the swing.  Poking surrounding weeds with a stick.  Must've been like heaven to this kid.)


It's the answer to everything.

And truthfully, I don't know how to make him stop saying no.

Because it's not a sassy, "NO!" every time.

And because there are times when I need  him to say no.

And there are times where he is legitimately saying no.

I.e., When Gizmo climbs up on the table after dinner is over.

Little Man says, "No, IDDO!" which interpreted is, "No, Gizmo!"

So I can't discipline him for saying No then....

And how about those times I scream, "NO!" at him while he is trying to disconnect the cords from every electronic device in our about that?

How can I discipline him for things that I do?


Do you see what I am saying?

This is such a faulty system.

And I am so bad at it.

And I sooooo understand what my mom meant when she said that the first kid is kinda like a practice round.... 

And it explains so much about why I, the first kid, turned out this way....

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Helpful How-To: Amazingly Cheap And HEALTHY Dinner

Despite what you might be thinking right now, I am not stealing from The Mommy Therapy's
weekly recipe-ish's.

Because, really, that's just a tough act to follow.

And I don't want to try.

But what I do want to do is brag about something that I:

1. Came up with on my own.  Call me Pioneer Woman. 

Actually, now that I think about it, I am sure she has done something like this on her blog, but then again, what hasn't she done? 

Also, I can't wait for her tv show to premiere, so I can figure out what exactly I can do with 121 lbs. of butter.

She's pretty much my hero.

And my best friend.

Don't believe me?

As if this isn't proof enough....

Look at the love she had for the unborn Little Man...


2.  Can enjoy for less than 7 Weight Watchers points.

If you have ever done Weight Watchers, you know that it's almost impossible to make a pasta dish for less than a hundred bazillion points.

I mean, really, the Weight Watcher's frozen entree's have more points than that.

And less pasta than a steakhouse.

Just saying.

3.  I can make it for like $3 TOTAL.

You just can't beat that kind of deal.

So, I know you are now saying, how can I make this amazingly delicious and nutritious meal?

And this is where I bestow my wealth of information on you.

You should be thankful.

It goes something like this.

1 lb. roll of Italian Seasoned Jennie-O Ground Turkey ($1.78 at Wal-Mart)

1 box of Great Value Whole Wheat Pasta ($.98 at Wal-Mart)

1 can of Rotel tomatoes ($.87 at Walmart)

1 package of Green Giant Frozen Spinach ($1 at Wal-Mart)

A dab of olive oil and parmesan cheese, both of which I don't count the price of since I only buy them like once or twice per year. 

I am assuming that everyone else is the same as me and keeps this kind of thing in your pantry at all times....

First of all, brown the meat.

Then drain it.

Because even turkey leaves extra fat sitting in the pan....

Then divide it in half (we usually only use a quarter of it, because we're uber economical like that).

Save half of it for tomorrow's dinner.

And throw the rest back in your skillet with a little olive oil, half of your tomatoes (you can save the rest for tomorrow's dinner too...), and a quarter of your pack of frozen spinach.

(Look at all this food we are saving for future dinners!)

Stirring until the spinach is separated and cooked....hopefully you know what that means. 

Cause there really is no other way to describe it.

In the mean time, boil some water and cook your pasta.  (I would suggest only cooking half your box of pasta at most....  Who knows, you might like this meal so much you want to make it again tomorrow.  Especially since you have all your ingredients ready and available...not that I would ever...)

And while that's happening, you should probably play a few moves of Words with Friends with me (username's leahmpeck).

Then drain your noodles and toss with your meaty, tomatoey, spinachy mixture

And toss in a couple dabs of parmesan cheese, stir, and serve.

Your husband will think you are a Kitchen Goddess.

Not to mention a Money Saving Diva.

And you?

You get to eat your delish dinner, knowing that it's healthy and delicious.

And your hips will thank you in the end.

And then you can thank me.

And then maybe I can give some love to your unborn child....

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

The Black Hole of Books

So...I am at quite the impasse.

Having read the Hunger Games series through 2x in the last month...

And having just finished The Host...

I have no idea what to read next.

And since I am saving all my Swagbucks to buy a certain someone a very special birthday gift, I dare not waste any of my Amazon moolah on books.

Which is so sad.

But in the interim, I am reading some of the books that I downloaded for free thanks to Amazon and my Kindle app.

And let me tell you what I have learned....

Ready for this?

Good books are HARD TO COME BY.

I know.

It's pretty earth shattering.

Like the realization that Kermit and Piggy can't really procreate.

Despite all the smoke and mirrors that Jim Henson blew at us with A Muppet Christmas Carol...

Or the awareness that the Easter Bunny doesn't hop around delivering eggs and chocolate goodies....

Pretty devastating.

I'm at a loss.

A total loss.

Of course, I realize now that there is a reason why my current books were free....

They are total crap.

Predictable storylines.

Boring characters.

I have no idea where to go from here.

Nothing on the best seller list is even coming close to piquing my interest.

But mostly because I doing what they always tell you not to do...

I am judging books by their covers.

Someone help me!!!!

The problem is I have become a book snob.

A flurry of good books and I have become spoiled to exciting storylines, admirable characters, and sweaty-palm-inducing romance.

This so must be how people felt after reading Shakespeare.

You know, before he added all the unhappy endings.

Monday, June 13, 2011

Dear Disney, ALL of Your Films NEED to end With a Kiss from Prince Charming. Trust me...

This weekend my mom and I had a much needed opportunity to sit and talk.

And laugh.


It was probably only an hour or two after everyone else had gone to bed, but it was wonderful.

We joked and laughed about things she never knew about me (like how my baby sister told me about the birds and the bees in the deli section of our local supermarket) and some things I never knew about her.  Like the time that she spoke at a County Boardmeeting about the need to stop rezoning the town so that our farmers would stop losing their land....  Who knew?!

But one fo the stories she told me made us both laugh so hard we were in tears.

Apparently, when she was about 11 years old, her teacher sent her home with a note about a Girl Scout's sponsored movie night at school for all the girls.

She assumed that they wouldn't go.

Because they never really participated in any of the extracurricular functions if sports weren't involved.

However, the next day, she went back to school with a signed permission slip. 

She AND her motherwould be going to the movie night.

And when she got to school, she found out that all of her friends were going too.

Along with all of their mothers.

She was so excited, she could hardly stand it.

Truthfully, they all were.

It was with much anticipation that they awaited this amazing bonding opportunity.

Finally, the day arrived.

They were all in their seats early.

And before you know it the Girl Scout leaders had turned off the lights and started the film....

At the end of the film, the scout leaders began tossing feminine napkins into the audience of 11 year old girls and their mothers.

Mom was horrified.

What had happened to the happy-go-lucky movie she had been looking forward to?

Because it ended with what is the equivalent of a death sentence to an 11 year old - the promise of bleeding from your crotch every 28 days and free-flying feminine napkins.

Good try, Disney and Girl Scouts of America.

But this is no fairy tale ending.

(I'm sharing this over at Serenity Now, because really, who wouldn't enjoy knowing that Disney made a period movie????)

Weekend Bloggy Reading


Techy posted this on Facebook over the weekend.

Without my permission....

Just to clarify, I am justified in any recourse I choose, correct?

Thursday, June 9, 2011

No Margin For Error - WINNING

Um.  What a day. 

Today begins the craziness that is wedding season 2011 in the BTSW household.

Techy and I were up before the chickens.

It should be noted that we don't actually have any chickens.

Just 1 dog.

But we were up before him, so I can only assume that means that we would be up before any local, wandering fowl that may indeed find it's way to my house.

Although, now that I am thinking about it, wouldn't it be nice to have chickens? 

Free eggs....

A free alarm clock.

Plenty of fertilizer for my non-existant garden.

One thing I know for sure, I do not want geese.


Nasty geese.

What was I talking about?

Oh yeah.  Wedding season.

And Techy and I being up ultra megazoid early.

We had a long drive ahead of us today with said dog and one relatively independant toddler (thankfully no chickens or geese - can you imagine?!).

And only after Techy ran enough errands in such a whirlwind that he didn't know where he was going.

Although, one could argue that he never really knows where he is going, so what's the difference.

Let's skip ahead a few hours...

Getting out of work.

Oh, that's right, I didn't mention that I had to work half a day, right?


So yeah.  Got out of work...

Just in time to keep Techy pointed in the right direction for 6 hours.

And entertain the cranky child strapped down in his car seat in the backseat.

Only to skid into the church parking lot about 3 minutes before the rehearsal started.

But hey.

We made it.

When we had left ourself basically NO margin for error.

To be honest, I don't know how we did it.

But I'm soooooooooooooo thankful we did.

Because I got to play the role of Groom's grandma.

Let's just say, that's not something I would have wanted to miss anything!


Thankfully, I have been practicing the part, and I pretty much nailed it.


On the down side, I didn't workout, I had a slice of pizza, and about 3 cookies.

All things considered, I think I just about leveled things out. 

After all you can't win 'em all, right Charlie???

Nope, he's still WINNING!

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Helpful How-To: Motivational Version

Because some days we just don't feel like going to the gym.

Or eating right....

Here's a helpful little reminder.

Here's to Yoplait for giving me a little reminder! 

Helpful How-To: Relaxation

I don't know if you can sense it or not...

But I am stressed. 

So, so stressed.

This summer is gearing up quicker than I ever dreamed possible.

This weekend is a wedding.

Next weekend Techy has a photoshoot and I am hosting a party at my house.

The following weekend is a 2 photoshoot weekend.  I hate 2 photoshoot weekend's.

And the week after that, my brother is getting married.

If you are looking at a calendar, that would be 4th of July weekend.

And we're driving.


The weekend after that is a 2 photoshoot weekend.  Again.

And finally, the weekend after that begins something almost too glorious to even think about right now.


To keep myself from getting too overwhelmed at the fact that there are so little downtime between then and now, I am focusing.

You can join me if you would like....

Closing my eyes....

Deep breath in.....

Now, open my eyes....

And I'm here...

And here.

This is my reward for all the ridiculousness that I have to endure between now and July 15.

If you need a little relaxation, you are more than welcome to focus on it as well.

I totally understand.

And I already know of at least 1 person who is participating.

We Interrupt Our Normally Scheduled Programming For This Small Announcement


Wanna know how I know???

Because, Sarah totally ripped off my word of the year - "Awesomesauce"

(That I totally ripped off of Parks and Rec...)

Now I know you are thinking that she probably got it off of Parks and Rec as well....

But I'm totally going to go with, she found my blog, saw me use it here, or here, or here.

Because that gives me street cred.

And goodness knows I need some street cred.

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Oh, the Summer Nights

Yesterday, after what was a considerably mild and lovely weekend, I checked the forecast.

To see this guy...

Thank you,
Dun duh dun.

As a {fair weather} runner, this is my death sentence.

But I thought it was about time to give you an update on my running.

And to be honest about it.

So let's start with honesty....

First of all, remember when I complained about running in the wind?

I take it back.

Because wind is the only way I can run in this ridiculous heat and humidity that poses for summer time in Delaware!

So, over the last week, I have forced myself into several smaller, slower paced runs to compensate.

Starting with this one on Memorial Day.

We were still in Georgia.

The humidity was at about 225%.

And it was 85 degrees by 9 am.

When the run was done, I came inside dripping.  LITERALLY.

But then we were home.

Where it was hotter.

And I managed to push my butt around the neighborhood for this run.

Honesty:  I stopped halfway through for a water break. 

I'm lame, but I consider it the same as hydrating during my race. 

My body needed this in the 90 degree heat.

And then, a few days later, this run happened.

In the middle of an afternoon.

 I'm a pansy, but I really wanted a good long run and I knew I wouldn't be able to do it until the sun started going down.

So I phoned it in.

Jillian would be so disappointed in me.

But I redeemed myself.

A nice, solid 3.58 run with a friend later in the day.

It was heavenly.

And only partly because it had cooled off.

After a week of running by myself, I realized how much I had missed running with someone.

As nice as Pandora is, nothing competes with conversation.

And after chatting with my friend during our run, I was motivated to push myself.

So last night, I went out there and gave it all I had.

Promising myself that if I kept my pace below a 9 minute mile, I would let myself quit at the first loop.

Which would be a 2.7 mile course.

And here she is:

2.7 miles in 23:50. 

That's an 8:52 mile. 

My goal for next week will be to either increase my distance and maintain that pace or increase my pace with the same distance. 

6 of one...

But all things considered, I would call this a successful running week.

Hot or cold.

Monday, June 6, 2011

I Wanna Get Chocolate Wasted!

Last night, I stayed up past my bedtime watching the MTV Movie awards.

Also known as, "The Most Ridiculous Awards Show Known to Mankind".

To redeem my good name, I only watched it for the official Breaking Dawn trailer.

But I obviously thought this was the best moment of the whole show. 

She was pretty much the only person, other than Jason Sudeikis who got her lines right.

Thank goodness there are still SOME professionals in Hollywood.


Sunday, June 5, 2011

Simple Goals Being Met.

Today I am guest posting over at My Goal Is Simple.

Hop on over and say hello!

Friday, June 3, 2011

Pantiliner Premium

I have a question for you?

What exactly is the purpose of a pantiliner if it is not to irritate you endlessly?

I mean, seriously.

That time rolls around and on top of all those amazing girl feelings, you get to deal with floppy pantiliners?

As in, why is this thing trying to wax my hoo-ha?!?!?

I am telling you, there may be nothing worse in the whole wide world.

Except for maybe those giant pad/ice packs they give you after having a baby.

I take that back.

There is nothing evil about those babies. 

They are frozen heaven.

Like ice cream for your crotch.

However, after the initial - my insides have just become my outsides - feeling subsides, said ice pack turns into crotch tundra.

Not that it happened to me, mind you. 

Just someone I know....

Alas, I digress....

I realize, thanks to many horror stories from my mother, that I should be supremely grateful for today's modern technology that allows for adhesive backed feminine protection....

But is there anything wrong with wishing, nay, expecting that the adhesive on the back of a pantiliner/pad would be at least as strong as a band-aid?

Seriously, peeps.

I put a Band-Aid on a cut last week and after multiple handwashings and heaven only knows how many meals with a fork digging into it, the thing still took 3 people and a small crane to peel off of my hand.  (Not literally, but you get the picture)

Part of me wonders if perhaps the people at Always shouldn't be calling the people at Band-Aid to work something out.

Hey, Band-Aid, I got an idea for you.

You should walk into Always with this sales pitch:

"We have a product that sticks to anything and makes grown men cry when it is peeled off and you can't get the backing on a pantiliner to adhere to cotton for more than 30 seconds."

No? Ok.

I will admit, my idea may be lacking a little something....

Like tact.

Which is why I am a blogger and not in advertising.

And what about the wings?

I mean seriously?

Common sense, right?

But there are just some things I have to wonder about?

I mean, really.

What could make an already annoying pantiliner even more violating? 

Oh, I know, an extra flap to come loose and stick to *things*!  Great idea!

Let's call it a "wing"!

Thus implying it may, in fact, take flight while you are wearing it. 

But how do we sell it as a good idea? 

Oh, I know!  Claim it provides extra coverage! 

You know, while it's flying around your underpants.


And while I'm at it...

One more idea....

Let's add on a "wing" to go around thongs.

The wings will adhere to themselves.

Ensuring that after "removal" there will still be a tiny tuft of cotton and adhesive wrapped around your thong.


Never to be removed again.

Again, not that this has ever happened to me....

Just some random ranting from experiences I have heard about.

Maybe you have heard about them too....

Because I think this may make someone smile, I am sharing this over at Serenity Now.

Weekend Bloggy Reading

Hop on over and say hello!

Thursday, June 2, 2011

My Honest Opinion - Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Chocolate

Today, I would like to take the opportunity to do something that I very rarely do...

Toss my opinions on several topics on your shoulders....

Don't hate.

I am blaming it on contact ADHD.

From having been with Techy so much this weekend.

I can't focus on one topic for too long. 

And it's all his fault. 

Because I have become acustomed to flitting from subject to subject in order to keep up with the inner workings of his brain.

Scary, in and of itself....

But I have SOOOOOO many opinions to share.


1.  Chick-fil-a in Georgia is about 100 times more efficient than Chick-fil-a anywhere else. 

I know, right? 

You thought Chick-fil-a's in general were mad efficient. 

But seriously. 

Georgia Chick-fil-a's are on a whole new level of impressiveness.

And can we talk about the fact that it is pretty much the best fast food ever? 

With the exception of Fazoli's - which I hear has gone out of business. 

Probably due to someone like Techy stealing all their breadsticks. 

This makes me sadder than you can know.

2.  I am mad unpopular these days.


I posted "what's on your summertime playlist" on facebook the other day hoping to get a whole list of songs to have Techy download for me.

I got 2 responses.

Color me cranky.

3.  I love my job.

I often like to complain about the fact that I have to get up and go to work 5 days a week.

But during weeks like this week, when I have to do my job AND someone else's I realize how lucky I am to have MY job.

Especially since my boss has never ever used any of my faux pas against me.

And clearly, he could.


4.  Right now, if someone were to ask me what is on my summer time play list (can we say, "bitter?"), I would answer with "Tonight, Tonight" by Hot Chelle Ray and "Good Life" by One Republic.  Seriously.  It doesn't get much better.

Unless you are an 18 month old. 

In which case, "Tonight, Tonight" does nothing for your groove thang - but "Wheels on the Bus" makes you bounce in your babychair like Bill Cosby in that one intro dance.

Yeah.  Wheels on the Bus.  Epic.

Bill Cosby.  Epic.

Hot Chelle Ray.  Epic. 

5.  If you don't already, you need to go out right now and purchase a pair of heels/wedges with a strap around your ankle.

It will do mad things for your legs.

And even madder things to your lover.

We don't have to talk about what it could do to your credit card statement, though, right?

6.  Did I mention that I am going to start referring to Techy as my lover?

It makes me sound so much more risque.

Maybe it will make me more popular.

Unless you are a teenager in my youth group.

And then it just makes me disgusting.

7.  I am beginning to think the Brit's have it right with all their hat-wearing.

I think it would be awesome to wear hats all the time like Camilla does.


They dress up any outfit.

Hat with my pjs at 3 pm?

Now I don't look sloppy, I look ready for tea!

And I am pretty sure they divert the eye from any decidedly unappealing bulges that may make appearances in my get-ups.

Therefore, hats equal epic.

And ultra necessary.

8.  Lauren Alaina so should have won American Idol.


Did you see her sing this song?

I cried my eyeballs out.

Also did you see her kiss Scotty McCreery?

Yep.  It did happen.

Techy and I both saw it the first time.

And were like, "WE KNEW IT!"

Although they are both denying any meaning to the kiss....

Yes.  I Googled it.

9.  I think my Behind the Stone Wall is getting stale.

I think I am not alone in this thought.

Also?  I think I talk too much.

If only I had the ability to be witty in a nutshell.

Like some people.

10.  "The Host" - although very good - just cannot compare to Hunger Games.

Which, by the way, Techy has read 2 of the 3 books in the past 3 days.


Apparently, I talked the books up THAT MUCH.

I consider myself a success based on this fact alone.

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Helpful How-To: Flying with a Toddler

Another lifetime ago, I gave you a list of how-to's for flying with a baby, and now, while it's fresh in my mind, I want to give you a list of how-to's for flying with a toddler.

For reference sake, I will use my experiences from this past weekend to tell you what to do.

And I will start with this phrase:

"It was the best of times, it was the worst of times"  But mostly just the worst of times....

(I added that last part myself.)

(It's purely for emphasis.)

(And based on how ridiculous this travel experience was.)

Last Thursday, Techy and I, along with someone that we are still calling Little Man, despite the fact that he is not so little, travelled to Georgia.

Technically, it was last Friday, but that's beside the point.

And because Techy and I are cheap, we refused to check any bags.

Meaning that we packed for a 4 day weekend in 1 carry-on bag and 1 diaper bag.  Techy carried on his necessities - lap top case and camera bag.  Meaning we had 4 carry-on's total.

Step 1 for travelling with a toddler - Do what we say, not what we do! 

In this case - pay to check your bags.

You can thank me later.

Trying to push a stroller, a carry-on, a diaper bag, and 2 random technology-filled bags through security is difficult at best.

Seriously, though.  If you want to fly with your toddler on the cheap and carry-on is your method to prevent madness, fine. 

But at least check your car seat.  Most airlines will check car seats for free. 

Sure this will slow you down at the check-in counter, but when you are running through the airport trying to catch your flight, you will be glad you did.

Step 2.  Worst case preparation is best case preparation.

Thursday evening/night, Techy, Little Man, and I spent about 6 hours sitting in an airport waiting for our flight.

Luckily for me, I had thought ahead enough to pack 3, yes THREE, pacifiers - because airports are disgusting and my child is very much in a "everything can be thrown like a ball" phase - in the outside pocket of my diaper bag.  For easy access.

I also packed his "night-night" AKA, his blanket, on the top of his diaper bag.

Along with a cup of juice. 

Airports will let you carry on baby bottles/sippy cups IF you have a baby with you. 

(Don't get all smart and try to get through security with a bottle full of apple juice if children aren't in your party thinking that because I told you they will allow it, it is Gospel.  I know it's hard to believe, but it probably won't work.) 

They will however, take them aside and screen them.  Be prepared.

For ease of use, though, we did pack our umbrella stroller rather than our traditional larger stroller.

And it worked just fine.

Especially when in hour #3 of being in said airport, this happened.

That was when they delayed our flight the 2nd time. 

Thank goodness for the night-night, paci #2, and that stroller!

Because when, at 11:30, they grounded our flight indefinitely, we thought we were going to spend our night like this.

Thankfully, within about 45 minutes, they advised us that we were cleared for take-off, and by 12:35 we were on the run way.

You would not even believe what you can do with a bunch of overly tired, southern-bound people when you give them the option of sleeping in an airport all night. 

I think everyone was on board the plane within 15 minutes!

You'd have thought they were serving cupcakes on the plane, the way people were rushing to their seats.

Of course, once we boarded the flight, Little Man morphed into this kid -

AKA.  The kid who just had a 3 hour nap and wants nothing to do with sleep on a plane.

I think he thought they were serving cupcakes, too.

He wanted to play with the shades.

He wanted to throw around the barf bags.

He wanted to read through the picture guide for how to crash-land a plane and how to use his seat as a floatation device....

Anything but sleep.

Thankfully, he wasn't noisy, so most of our travel companions were able to catch some Z's even though we couldn't.

Step 3 for travelling with a toddler. 

Bring toys. (Or a dvd player - unfortunately for us, LM is not interested in tv right now...)

Preferably a dead cell phone or a remote control without batteries.

Maybe even a truck or 2.

Although, if your kid is anything like mine, he gets a truck in his hand and starts screaming, "BEEP, BEEP!"

Thankfully, by 3 am, we were in Atlanta, out of the airport and on our way to our friend's house.

But before you go thinking that travel adventures end with the plight of delayed and/or cancelled flights...

They don't.

Because on the way back, we pulled in to the airport and realized that we had left our umbrella stroller sitting in our friends' garage.

Now, we were left with 4 carry on bags and a toddler with no stroller.

In Atlanta International.

Step 4 of travelling with a toddler - Make sure you have your stroller.

At all times.

Go back to your car and make sure you have your stroller again just to make sure.

And just to be certain, you should probably tie strings on your fingers and toes reminding yourself to check for your stroller before ever stepping out of your door again.

You might think this is ridiculous.

But you haven't carried a 25 lb. toddler on one hip while carrying a diaper bag that weighs at least that, if not more, on the other hip for an hour through Atlanta's rigorous security checks.

Just saying.

Other things to consider that I am not necessarily making steps or how-to's:
-Carry a birth certificate for your child.  If for nothing more than your own peace of mind.
-One of those back-packs/baby leashes would be an excellent idea for an airport.  I used to think they were ridiculous.  USED TO being the key words in that sentence.
-Snacks would have come in handy and kept us from spending a small fortune on airport food.

All in all, we survived.  We haven't yet contacted a divorce attorney.  And we are planning to travel with Little Man in the very near future. 

Obviously, we learned a lot on this trip.

And hopefully, you did too.