Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Valentine's Day Treat: Giveaway (closed)

When I was in the sixth grade, I woke up Valentine's morning with a card at the head of my bed. My parents had surprised me with my very first real Valentine's card. It was hideous - pink with a giant heart on the front with embossed lace detail. It was completely impersonal, crowded with three separate poems using words my parents would never use to describe their love for me. Still, I loved it. It made me feel special, considered, cared about.

These days there is a fantastic alternative to shopping for special occasion cards at the grocery store or the mall. For a truly personal greeting card, Treat.com offers a ton of great options! You can customize pretty much every aspect of their cards from adding your own pictures to creating your own text. And if you're no Shakespeare, they do provide you with suggested text for each card! Plus, if you're someone who does everything from your phone, they even have an iPhone app.

Monday, January 21, 2013

One Week Later

I did it! I've kept up this running gig for more than a whole week. Some things I've learned:

1. No bigger motivator to run fast than a dozen guys sitting at the foot of your driveway doing roadwork with traffic held up on either side.

2. No better motivator to run further than knowing that same group of guys will still be there when you get back... Unless you can manage to run long enough (I couldn't).

3. Make sure you have a good playlist to keep your mind off your physical anguish.

Some favorite pick-up-the-pace songs (links are to the official music videos): 

Any must-have songs you love that I should add to my Run! playlist? 
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Thursday, January 17, 2013

Comfort Food

In my experience, there are two types of cooks (whether they are good or not is beside the point). I consider myself an average cook. I don't generally use exact recipes, except when trying out something new. Then, I just do a handful of this and a scoop of that. Not really helpful when someone wants to replicate a meal you've just prepared. Also, not great if you don't remember what you used as a substitute for another ingredient that you actually end up liking better...

Anyway, that's beside the point. Since we've been here at my parents' house, I have prepared little to no Korean food. It's a bit intimidating, to be honest. My comfort food with my own twist. What's the point when I can just have my mom make it for me and get the original comfort food, anyway?

Except, my son. His comfort food is my cooking. And last night he requested what we call "spicy cucumbers." We're very creative in naming our foods.

A makeshift recipe of my son's favorite spicy cucumbers:

Slice up some cucumbers (peeled or not, really doesn't matter). Then salt generously. Wait about 15 minutes then rinse well.
salted, sliced cucumbers
Next, sprinkle on some fresh pressed or powdered garlic (whatever you have on hand). Add some sesame oil, toasted sesame seeds, and Korean Hot Pepper Paste (KHPP). I know, I'm super specific. Add more KHPP depending on how hot you want it, and how hot that particular batch of KHPP is. And then add a little soy sauce to taste. 


I am so not a food photographer
Serve over some steamed white rice, and that is what G calls breakfast. And lunch. And dinner, if he has his way.
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Monday, January 14, 2013

My Celebrity Crush List

This may be an entirely ridiculous post and far too juvenile for my age (maybe), but I know of at least ONE real live person who at least feigned interest. So skip this if you want, or scratch your heads in amazement. Or drool alongside me. Here is my personal list of celebrity crushes. Not to be confused with my list of people/celebrities I'd like to meet, although there may be some overlap. And to be clear, these are celebrities that I have had crushes on and not celebrities I think have had crushes on me. I'm sure there was some confusion...

In no particular order (for the most part):

David Tennant

Leonardo DiCaprio

Joseph Gordon-Levitt

I'm pretty sure I don't need to explain why on any of them.

and because I'm starting to show my age with these choices - a little young blood for you -
The Wanted

That was fun. Who are your celebrity crushes? 
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Friday, January 11, 2013

Panic! At the Winter Formal

So... this is my 16 year old cousin that you may or may not have seen me tweet about:
last summer at N's first birthday
Somehow, this sweet girl convinced me to sew her dress for winter formal. Without a pattern. She bought a dress online, didn't like the fit, returned it, then drew up her own design. And now I get to create the new dress in real life. And I have less than one month. 
her fantastic vision
Before I officially agreed to the project, she went and bought the fabric. I said "let me think of how to construct it then price out the materials" but what I meant was "let me take some time, then tell you it would be better if you just went about found another dress at the mall." But now here I am: 
Oh sweet, delusional, 16 year old, what made you think of me as a miracle worker?

Let's all wish me luck now! Keep your fingers crossed and hope she doesn't end up in tears... 
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Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Becoming a Runner Again

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I finally put my running shoes to work today. In the rain. In near freezing temperatures. I ran 5k after being relatively inactive for two years (if you don't count chasing the kids around). That is about 3 miles, if you're wondering. My lungs are hating me.

For the first .2 miles, I was in Heaven. For the next 1.5 miles, I thought I was going to die. Then I walked for about half a mile, and jogged the last stretch home. I walked around on the porch for a bit to cool down, but had to come in to lie down. Learn from my mistakes:

1. Don't run a 5k fresh out of the gate. 1 or 2 miles are equally impressive and exponentially less stupid after such a long hiatus from running. I don't care how far you were running two years ago.
my soaking wet shoes after the run... the picture is blurry because I think I was about to pass out
3. Eat breakfast AFTER your run. There is no benefit to feeling like you're going to revisit your pancake along the side of the road. Have a small snack (handful of nuts, etc) if you'd like an energy boost, but save the full meal for afterward.

4. Leave your glasses at home if you can. And it's raining. And cold. Your poor eyesight will be crystal clear in comparison to the rain covered, fogged over prescription lenses you normally prefer.

5. If you have an inhaler that you're supposed to use every day, it would probably be a good idea to break that out BEFORE you hit the pavement.

Now, the trick to getting back to where running a 5k was easy? Seeing if I can get myself back out there tomorrow, and the next day...

What are your fitness/health goals for this year? Maybe we can cheer each other on. post signature

Friday, January 4, 2013

Ringing in the New Year with a Bang

(or not)

Warning: This post relates somewhat to my menstrual cycle. And babies. And unprotected s3x, apparently. If you don't want to read it, please don't.

Like a lot of women these days (or so I imagine as I write this), I keep track of my cycle using an app on my phone. Following my latest period at the start of December, my little app declared my average cycle to be 26 days long. I'm still regulating since having N, but it seemed a safe bet.

I guess I should back the train up a bit right here. After I had G, I knew I didn't want a surprise blessing baby on his first birthday, so I opted for an IUD. This worked great for me personally (I know it's a fail for some), but I opted for a daily pill after N. Clearly, I was not thinking things through. I didn't stay on the pill 6 months before deciding it was too much of a hassle. I was on it for years before having kids with no complaints, I should say. As if that matters. The point being, two-fold. I'm not on a hormone based birth control (that's 1) that would also happen to regulate my cycles (and that's the second thing).

So our current birth control is now a condom. The problem with a condom is actually having to use it. With your spouse. Of 6+ years. After years of not needing/wanting to. We were good about it at first, but we've been more or less dodging bullets more and more often. 

And now you're pretty much up to speed for this post.

Cycle Day 26: Nothing. Not a big deal, only once in the past 3 months have I had a cycle exactly 26 days long. But - my last cycle was only 25 days...

Cycle Day 27: Nervous. Could I be pregnant? It's possible... it really is.

Cycle Day 28: I'm pregnant. Crap. How will I explain this to my husband? This is TERRIBLE timing. He will not survive this. Maybe I should take a pregnancy test.

Cycle Day 29: How could I not be thrilled with another baby? Answer: I am. What are some possible names... I wonder if we could wait to find out the gender this time? I'm really okay with this and happy about it. I still need a test. Wait. Crap. Hello Aunt Flo. Sudden disappointment over not actually being pregnant in the first place.

super simple, right?

Moral to the story? I should have just taken a test as soon as the thought occurred to me. Also, I'm glad I didn't tell my husband. Also, I need a more "reliable" birth control method...

I can't be the only person who goes insane over a late period, right? Do you have any stories to make me feel less crazy? And what is your policy on when to test when you're NOT TTC?

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Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Goals for 2013

Now is the time that everyone is talking about goals and resolutions for the new year. While there happen to be about a million ways I could better myself as a person, for this post my focus is my blogging.

I want to be a more transparent, open and honest blogger. It's not that I've been dishonest in my blogging. I just want to widen the focus of this blog. A lot. I've already been doing that bit by bit, whether I've meant to or not. Let's face it - it's been a long time since the sole focus here was cloth diapers. I still love talking about it all, but I've got a whole lot more going on in my life.

Writing about life is cathartic. I'm going to find my voice as a writer and in life. I'm sorting out all the cluttered thoughts in my head and moving forward.

2013 is going to be a good year.

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