Archive for March, 2010

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Breaking Habits, Part 2

03/30/2010

No Candy February was such a smashing success. I didn’t eat candy for the entire month, felt awesome even during the initial cravings, and when the 30 days were over, I didn’t race out to buy Skittles. As a matter of fact, I haven’t even had Skittles, or anything more than a few 5 cent candies in nearly two months. Knowing how great I feel without pouring a mess of sugar into my body kind of keeps me from wanting to do so, you know?

The habit I chose to break in March was to stop eating ice cream and to stop drinking milk, simply because I’m slightly lactose intolerant and well, milk and ice cream make me sick. But they taste so damn goooood. Well, chocolate milk does. And really, any flavour of ice cream.

For years and years I’ve avoided drinking a glass of regular milk because I know it makes me sick, but the second you add some chocolate syrup into the glass? I’m all over that cause suddenly it tastes so delicious. And yes, ice cream makes me sick as well but it is so creamy and sugary and awesome that I’ll order milkshakes and I’ll buy cartons to keep my freezer stocked all. the. time. But almost every time after I finished the cone/bowl/glass, I was hurting. And usually pretending I wasn’t cause it is kind of embarrassing to be like, “Yeah, I feel so sick, and yes, I know why, and yes, I did it on purpose.” It’s never been worth it, but as soon as I was back feeling better, I would forget how NOT WORTH IT it was, and I’d be back pouring Nesquick into my milk. So smart, I am.

Well, I did not have a glass of chocolate milk nor a scoop of ice cream in the entire month of March. And like the no candy thing, it has been awesome. Yeah, I would be kind of jealous when my friend ordered a milkshake while we were out for dinner. And yes, it was painful to actually make chocolate milk for friends at my house, and then have to pour myself a glass of water, but the thing is, I feel better. It is actually quite nice to have snacks that don’t leave me feeling nauseas. Like popcorn for example, or an apple all sliced up. A couple times I even had some So Good which is nowhere near as good as “real” chocolate milk but I keep trying to fool myself into believing it is, until the day I forget what “real” chocolate milk tastes like and I’m all “Oooh, this is good!”

I’ve completed my 30 days, and likewise to how I felt last month with candy, I have no desire to buy ice cream. In fact, I have a half eaten carton in my freezer that truly isn’t appealing. It is amazing how our bodies work, eh?

Thursday is the start of Breaking Habits, Part 3 and I had a little bit of trouble trying to figure out which habit I should break, knowing that I have a lot of time off work in the coming month, including a trip to Vegas! But I’ve figured it out, I’ll do it even though it’ll be rough, and I’ll be back here at the end of April to tell you all about it!

Any habits you’ve broken recently?

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Kookie, Day 1

03/24/2010

So this little monster was dropped off last night. And while this could be the sleep deprivation talking, because yes, she did whine for the majority of the night, when I look at this picture, I’m all, “Awe, she’s not so bad!”

And yeah, my landlord’s granddaughter took a pink stamp to Kookie’s head before they left for Mexico.

Charming.

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Kookie and Tuffy

03/23/2010

So, I live in a basement suite, which isn’t really a basement per se, just the main floor of a house, not that the location matters at all right now. My landlords also live in the house – they are young Tanzanian grandparents who stay up late and don’t complain when I make a racket at 3am because I’m using the blender to make late night smoothies. Home life is a good life.

Late last week, Mr. Landlord knocked on my door to let me know that him and his wife are going to Cancun. Obviously this is exciting for them but equally so for me as when they go out of town, I throw parties, and if we’re being honest here, damn good parties. I absentmindedly chatted with him about the trip, while I made a mental list of Things To Do In Preparation For Big Stellar Party. As we said goodbye, he thanked me kindly, and said he would bring Kookie down for a visit sometime next week so she can get used to the place before they leave.

What?

In my pretending-to-pay-attention but really not-paying-attention-at-all, I guess I somehow agreed to look after his dog, Kookie, for the entire week in which they are in Cancun. Not only does a dog not fit into my party plans, I don’t really like Kookie. She is small-ish, but not super light and scoop-up-able and she’s yappy. Generally, I love dogs, of all sizes. My family’s dog weighs less than 10 pounds, and is the cutest black bundle of joy. She is lazy, but manages to power through a 10 mile run with me. She’s cuddly and lets me maul her and play with her and is just generally the best dog on the face of the Earth. I’ve had a German Shepard and a Golden Retreiver in my lifetime as well, who I also loved dearly. I play with my friend’s awesome dogs all the time. But for some reason, I’ve just never been that fond of Kookie.

Tuffy, my little rugrat.

Last night Mr. Landlord knocked on the door again, this time with Kookie in tow. He was going out to dinner and figured he would let her scoop out the place, as they leave for Cancun Wednesday morning. Kookie came in, Mr. Landlord left, and for the following 3 hours, the dog did not stop whining. I took her outside. I rubbed her belly. I let her wander around. I threw her a ball. I held her on my lap. I told her she was the best dog ever, and I even called her ‘buddy’. I did everything I could think of to make the dog stop whining and pawing at the door but she WOULDN’T STOP.

Princess Tuffy & I.

I don’t know what to do. Tuffy doesn’t whine. Dogs I know and love don’t whine unless they need to go outside. I realize that she was probably just sad and maybe scared and missed her dad, but WHAT IF SHE DOESN’T EVER STOP? What if she whines for an entire week? After the first hour of whining I lost my ability to concentrate on anything and nearly had a breakdown by hour two and a half.

I am a kind, gentle, loving person and I don’t know what I’ve ever done to Kookie to make her hate me so much, but starting tomorrow morning it’s Kookie and I for a week. And I’m all breaking out in hives about it. HELP.

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Thank You

03/15/2010

In March of 2009, I quit blogging. The fact that every detail of my life was splattered across the internet, for absolutely anyone to see, stressed me out to no end. I had jumped into writing a blog without a clear idea of where I wanted to go with it, and wound up letting people in on a few things that I wish I had kept private.

I wrote a goodbye post, shut my blog down, and immediately started a private blog so that I could still be writing and documenting, without the worry of who was reading. I contemplated returning to a public platform several times, but I wasn’t exactly sure how to do it. I didn’t want to have to censor myself, but there are some things I am not willing to discuss on the big ol’ internet at this time in my life.

In January, after nearly a year of not writing publicly, I felt as though there was just so much I wanted to share that I wasn’t able to fit into 140 character tweets. I began contemplating making a return, figuring out what I would talk about, and what would be off limits. Once I had figured out what I was comfortable discussing this time around, I made the grand return, and I am so incredibly happy to be back.

The call I received Thursday morning completely flipped my world upside down. The days since have been hard. I don’t feel like eating, I cry, and have nightmares about the war every night. At the same time, I have been making a conscious effort to put my best foot forward. I’m smiling at strangers, surrounding myself with my best friends, laughing, and am hopefully spreading some joy. I think it is important to mourn the loss of a dear friend, but also to shine a positive light on life itself.

I want to take a second to thank each of you who left me a comment, replied to my tweets, made a phone call, and sent me an email or a text over the course of the past few days. This is why I wanted to return to blogging so badly. The support the community gives is unbelievable. I had to stay at work on Thursday after receiving the call, and it was your messages that truly got me through the day until I could go home to my loved ones.

Thank you, so very, very much.

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Say I Love You

03/11/2010

‘Morning Mom.
How’d you know it was me?
We got new phones at work last week, finally have caller ID.
Sam, I just received some awful news..

She choked on her words as she began to cry.

Garrett was killed this morning.

Garrett and I grew up together. He lived across the street, and we shared a picturesque childhood. Our parents threw block parties, doors were left unlocked. Pictures of the two of us racing our Hot Wheels down our old street still hang on the wall of my parent’s home. When his family moved to Texas, mine flew down to visit. When they made their annual trips back up north, we vacationed with them. Garrett was the same age as my younger brother, born on the same day as my mom. Our families were incredibly close, and we stayed that way, even when distance separated us.

Since his deployment, my mom had been begging me to write Garrett a letter that she would include in one of the care packages she had been sending to Afghanistan. I stalled. I didn’t know what to say, and I deemed the mundane details of my day-to-day life unimportant. He was living in conditions far worse than I could ever imagine, fighting for the United States of America, and I was frustrated with my thirty minute commute to work.

I never sent a letter, and now I will never get a chance to.

So like many others who have lost loved ones will tell you, call simply to say hello. Don’t forget the power of ‘I love you‘. And even when you feel like you have nothing to say, send the letter.

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A Week in the Life

03/08/2010

My team travels a lot. Our flights are booked as a group, and we take up an entire section of the plane, sitting in alphabetical order. Last night, as we were flying home, a teammate sitting a couple rows ahead of me started a game. We had to choose which teammate’s life we would want to live for a week.

We were quiet as we glanced around, sizing each other’s lives up. Eventually some people chose the captain, who is currently a stay-at-home wife. A few chose to live as one of our defencemen who is on maternity leave, hanging out with and taking care of her 11 month old. Others chose sweet little Cass, who is a bit of a hipster, goes to school, works at a coffee shop and simply leads a different lifestyle than your typical elite athlete.

This morning, while scrolling through my reader, I decided to play this same game in the blogworld. I knew right away I was looking for someone with a life drastically different from my own, and not long after that I had happily decided I would be living as Chelsea Talks Smack. I can’t carry a tune for the life of me, so living as a ridiculously talented, awesomely opinionated, stunningly gorgeous artist for a week? Yeah, sign me up.

And now it’s your turn:

If you could live as another blogger for a week, who would it be, and why?

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Breaking Habits, Part I

03/02/2010

In the midst of the Olympic madness, which is something I will likely bring up for the next 84.9 years, I was doing a little 30 day challenge. It was Kyla who inspired me to do so, by announcing she was going vegan for the month of February. Her challenge sparked a little something in me that said, I need to change. I knew February was a ridiculous month to try anything – my days leading up to the Olympics were jam packed with work, rehearsals and training, and with the Olympics taking over the last 17 days of the month, I knew I wouldn’t be making it to the gym every day, nor would I be able to avoid eating out. I was craving positive change, but there was no way I was skipping once in a lifetime Olympic celebrations to go home and cook dinner. So, instead of something big, something that required time and planning, I decided to stop eating candy. I wasn’t giving it up to lose any weight (trust me, with the amount of alcohol consumed over the course of the Olympics, I absolutely did not lose weight). I needed to go 30 days without eating candy to break a habit.

The thing is, I work in an office and there is no one micromanaging my every move. I do what I want, when I want to do it, and as long as I get everything done by the end of the day, everyone is happy. So if I want to wander to the convenience store downstairs for Skittles, I can. And I did wander down there and do just that pretty damn often. Because the stroll allowed me to stretch my legs a bit, and the snack gave me a few minutes of entertainment. The only problem was the crash. If I had some sort of candy in the afternoon, I would come down from my little sugar high just as I was arriving home from work. And I would be tired and lazy and absolutely nothing sounded as appealing as laying down on the couch, tv remote in hand.

So, as silly as it may sound, I quit candy. And admittedly, for the first few days I actually had little conversations with myself that went something like, ‘Seriously? Stop thinking about sugar. Stop it. If you can’t make it through 30 days, you suck.’ And then I would laugh at myself, and angrily chomp on a carrot. But the good news is that I made it through February without touching candy once, and we’re a couple days into March now and I am still snacking on carrots if I want something to munch on in the afternoon.

Turns out, I feel better. It isn’t that I like the taste of carrots more than I like the taste of Sour Patch Kids, but I sure as hell am in love with the way carrots make me feel. I have energy when I get home from work. I’m happier. It was a small change, something I feel kind of ridiculous even telling anyone, but it was incredibly worth it. I’ve broken a bad habit and I no longer crave candy because I know how good I feel without it.

I have another little challenge in the works for this month, and I’ll let you know the outcome of it come April.