Thursday, March 31, 2011

Day 29

Keeping it short and light tonight.

Today was just an average day, and since I have pretty much used most of the obvious things to write about the past 28 days, I had to dig deep. I looked for something, any small little thing that made me smile today.....

I get home and look out the windows and see the amazing lights of the city. At night the lights twinkle, kind of like they are moving, or like they are a giant Christmas tree. I absolutely LOVE where I live. We are so blessed to live here, where everyday I can look out my window and see the ocean, and the amazing city of San Francisco, and the golden gate. I am in awe of the beauty, and at night these twinkling lights are calming. Also, the house next door still has its Christmas tree up, and still turns on their lights EVERY NIGHT. Adam and I chuckle, and make little bets when we think this tree is coming down, but, here we are, almost APRIL, and I can look outside and see this.....


Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Day 27-28

Ok, I am behind a day here, so I am going to say two things that make me happy!

One: I briefly explained on facebook about this, but left some details out. I went to Home Depot to get some dirt. I had 4 huge bags in my cart, and the stupid wheel broke. I was struggling to push this broken cart to my car when an employee saw me and ran over to help. He was so nice. He told me "You cant always be superwoman, sometimes you need help". What wise and wonderful words from this young man. I was brought almost to tears thinking about him on the way home- How NICE he was, and he didnt need to be. How many people do I come in contact with that I am that nice? I was so happy about it, i called his supervisor and told him.

My friend Tabitha is right. She said today : People are so quick to share when something pissed them off, even something minor, but few share when something pleases them.. especially when it is minor. Very true. I spread the kindness, and in turn, i felt GOOD inside. So, go spread some kindness! I would love to hear what you did!

OK, number 2: I am thankful for.... SPRING!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Wow! Spring is here and I feel GREAT about it! The sun is out, the air is warm, and I spend every chance I could out in it today. I planted plants, I pulled weeds, I transplanted plants. How wonderful it feels! This past Winter was so dark for me, and now I feel a new breeze of fresh life, and feel so alive! There is still more to do in the yard, but- here are some picts of some happy plants that made my home their home today. Enjoy- and Go outside!! (except for my special friends who still live in the cold... im so sorry..)

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Day 26

Ill post day 26 (yesterday) now, and today's later tonight.Almost done!!! And, Mango is a little upset that her post only got TWO comments..... So, keep the comments coming! For Mango's sake. ;)

Day 26: The seahorse

Yesterday started out rough. ROUGH. By noon I had already gotten myself so upset and thrown a tantrum or two. "Why cant I be this way" "Why cant I be that way" "Why isnt anything going the way I WANT". Well. I think we all have days like this, no? I was just so worked up about things in life I can not control. It gets so frustrating sometimes to want something so bad, and have no control whatsoever over it being that way.

I decided to stop throwing a pity party for one, and do something that will soothe me. So, I turned to knitting. No only knitting, but knitting a special gift for someone.

Theres something healing about giving isnt there? I can not post pictures because her surprise will be ruined ( I know your all wanting it to be you....) But, its very special, and I cant wait for her to get it. Amazing how that helped me. Then, Monday night is meditation night! I was getting dressed and saw a necklace in my drawer that my mom made for me. I beautiful seahorse. I put it on. Again, a gift given, happiness.

So, at meditation night the leader was talking about various Buddhist beliefs, which are found in many religions, which I found to be very true. (lets not turn this into a religious debate ya'll)
Point 1: Life is constantly changing.
Point 2: There is suffering in life. Well, duh. I have suffering in my life too.
Point 3: The cause of this suffering is our "attachment". Which, in listening to his talk, basically I got that we grasp so hard to the way we think our life SHOULD be, and suffer because... we cant control it. Thats life.

Thats exactly what I have been struggling with lately. I struggle because I see parts of my life "not fitting" with how I think things should be. I "suffer" (throw tantrums) because I cant just accept life for what it is, constantly changing and unpredictable.

Interestingly enough, I remembered being in a native American gift shop the other day, and I was reminded that many ancient cultures attributed special meanings to animals. I remember that I saw a seahorse in there. I got home last night and looked up the special meaning of the seahorse. This is what I found: They are known to be a symbol of patience and contentment. "Being content to be who they are". They are also known to be stubborn. In turbulent water they are known to wrap their tails on something to hold on. This is said to be a reminder to: be persistent in our goals, but be mindful that we are not too inflexible or stubborn in our achieving them.

May I be like this seahorse. Content with my life now, but persistent and mindful in reaching my goals....

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Day 25

Day 25

Adam has been nervous that I would get through all 30 days and not have a Mango day... SO here it is.

Mango was born August 15, 2002, two days before we got married. She was born in Placerville Ca. It was a few months after we got married that I felt the itch to have our family grow again- We knew we eventually wanted 2 pugs, but I think Adam thought that we should wait... BUT... I was looking around online and found a breeder. I knew we wanted a black girl this time so I had to call around. It wasnt as easy as it sounds. Black pugs are harder to find.

Adam came home from work and I said that we should "just go see this pug"... We took Lucy, and drove up. We were told that she had 2 black girls. One was 6 weeks, and the other was 10. We showed up and she had both pugs out for us. When Lucy walked in, the older pug ran up and started smelling and jumping on her! I was more into the 6 week one at first, just because it was so small. Once I held Mango though (she was the 10 week one) I fell in love. I had to have her! Eventually I convinced Adam, and we took her home.

We met her mom, who was black, and super crazy looking. Her dad was VERY friendly, and now we see she got a little from both parents! She was a calm puppy. She was never really into playing with toys or chewing on things like lucy was, BUT she was very into Lucy. Lucy on the other hand, was very... put out. Now, they love each other of course, but Lucy enjoyed being an only child too.

We discovered after about a year that she has a thyroid disorder, and some anxiety issues. We treat them with medication, and just like people, all dogs are just different. I couldnt imagine loving another pug as much as Lucy, but I do, we do. She has such a strong, sweet, sensitive, personality. Sometimes she can be difficult, and crazy, but that is just one part of her amazing personality. She is SO full of love!

Every morning we wake up to what we call the "mango show". This is when she decides its time to wake up and really turns up the cute for us. She rolls around, climbs on our chest, licks our ears and snuggles in our necks. Its the cutest thing ever! We cant help but to wake up with a smile. She loves going on walks, eating, and laying on our laps! She is going to be 9 this year, and shes still our little black baby pug who has stole our hearts forever.

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Day 24

Day 24- New Craft Day!

I have always seen these pictures of needle felted animals, and loved them. I thought they would be crazy hard, so I never tried. SO I watched some youtube videos, made some purchases, borrowed some items... and BAM. I have little birds. These made me so happy today. I need to figure out how to make little wire feet for them, but that will be another day. Also, in these pictures they look very "hairy" so I think I will give them a trim. In person you dont notice.
Enjoy! I made these out of pre-spun wool named "roving". I used little tiny needles to poke at it until I sculpted these shapes.

Cute huh!?

Friday, March 25, 2011

Day 23

One more week to go!

Today's post will be short because I am very tired. Tonight I am thankful for date nights! Ive had the same companion on these dates for the past almost 13 years now, and they never get old. I look forward to every single one of them! Our first date was so long ago, that neither of us really remember what we did. I know the first place we went together was Denny's. The first movie we saw together was The Truman Show. We first held hands on the Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk. Our first kiss was on my parents couch (I'm sure you love hearing that mom and dad!) But every date since then has been wonderful because we just have so much fun together. We always find something to laugh at. Our first time at Dennys we laughed at the weird drunk people making fools of themselves. We also both commented about how a certain parking garage was... likely to be the setting for multiple sexual assaults.

Tonight we laughed at the crazy ladies sitting next to us in the theatre were like "drunk secretaries". We also laughed when a teen thought Adam was his dad (who was CLEARLY not... when we saw what his dad really looked like...) We are always laughing and enjoying each other.
Whether its a weekend in Vegas, a ride on the SF cable cars, a movie, dinner, trips to shows, museums, the beach, a walk in the park, or a night watching the Daily Show with the pugs, I love every date with my husband, because I just love my husband!!! I look forward to thousands and thousands more with him!

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Day 22

Day 22

Today I woke up to a super rainy day. Rain was everywhere, and flooding was happening all over the bay area. It was cold, dreary, and unpleasant. I went to acupuncture. I stepped in a puddle on the way. I came home, lit a fire, brewed some hot tea, and enjoyed my peace. Oh how I love my peace. The rain hitting the windows, a pug on my lap, a hot fire. I also did some meditation, and 40 minutes of Yoga. I truly enjoyed my peace today.

Heres a picture of Lucy, also enjoying her peace.

What gives you peace?

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Day 20-21

Yeah, I know I am a slacker, but Im going to say two things today!

Yesterday I went on a long walk at Pt. Isabel state park. It wasn't raining, so I wanted to get some exercise in before the rain started again (which, it did) So, I went to the park, got a nice hot cappuccino, and walked. I have been trying to be "present" and "mindful" in my activities (thanks to my meditation classes) and I just really enjoyed nature. I have been to this park MANY times before, but, like most places, I dont look around much. I am so much "inside my head"... i miss out. I rarely stop to smell the roses..... So i did.

I saw the most wonderful plants, simple, but truly beautiful if you looked close enough. There were these wonderful yellow bush time flower plants that smelled wonderful! When I got to the main point (right on the water overlooking the GG bridge), i stopped, closed my eyes and just enjoyed the moment. I felt the ground under my feet, the wind in my hair, and the salty smell of the ocean. I am thankful for nature. Its amazing how just being outside and breathing the air calms me down and brings a smile to my face.

Day 21:
On the TV right now comes on this broadcast of the Les Miserables 25th anniversary show (i think 25..?) I love this!! So, on Sunday I spent the afternoon knitting and watching this. It has been a while since I heard the music, and just was brought to tears over and over again. I am so amazed by the beauty and power of music! There are just so many uplifting, strong, and powerful songs out there. Sometimes music goes where words alone can not. Here is a clip of the song that really got me deep! Go listen to a song that touches you!!!

Monday, March 21, 2011

Day 19

Day 19:

Short and simple.

Today I am thankful for... today. This is not just a cop out entry today- I am just thankful to be here and be alive. Such little things, I take for granted. Life is an amazing thing.

Heard a nice quote tonight:
Life is not just happening around you, life is happening through you. We are all alive and living our lives now.

What happens tomorrow we may not be able to control, and what happened yesterday we can not change. Take a breath and know your alive.

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Day 18

Day 18

Today I spent the day doing one of my original and most favorite hobbies- knitting. I love knitting. Although I feel like I've been in a bit of a "funk" with it lately, its my all time favorite. Its the one I am best at. So heres my knitting story.

(below: a beaded shawl I just made for my mama!)

I got the itch to start knitting right before my brother's second child (Jacob) was born. I really wanted to knit him a hat. I guess this was about 8 years ago?I knew nothing about knitting, but knew Adams mom, Sandy, knew how to do it. One day when we were there visiting she gave me my first lesson. I remember being so clumsy and awkward. She said I picked it up pretty easily (right Sandy?), but I felt like a fool with these long metal sticks. I went home and was obsessed. I had so many mistakes I had to rip out and start over SO many times.

I went to a yarn shop in Davis, where I was a college student, and got my first skein of brown wool, and some wood needles, which I liked way better. They were nice to me and welcomed me to the world of knitting.

Not too much later I found myself with my husband of a year, and our 2 pug babies, all living in Blacksburg Virginia. Adam worked, but I didnt have a job. No job, no friends, and nothing to do but learn to knit. Thats exactly what I did. I knit all the time. I read books on knitting when I got confused. I remember having the internet, but I dont remember using it in my knitting skills. youtube would have been HELPFUL....

The first winter in Blacksburg was dreadful to say the LEAST. We lived in this little (TINY), cold, old house on South Main street. I was snowed in, and alone most of the time (except for the MICE.. and the pugs) I knit and knit. I wasnt very good at it, but I was determined. I remember making several dog sweaters.

The only knitting supply store I knew of was Michael's, so I was stuck with crappy yarn, and didnt even know it. I remember the day I discovered Mosaic. Adam and I went in and were greeted by Gina, the owner. At the time it was a small shop in the front of her mothers clothing store. I little old Chinese lady was also in there, knitting. I remember she was making noice about how BIG some of these needles were and how "ridiculous" a size 15 is. I picked a yarn up, called "Splash" (made my crystal palace), and Gina said "so your a hokie!?". I had no CLUE what a "hokie" was. I soon learned that red and orange were the colors of a very popular football team there. (pssh football...) I bought it.

I was a frequent customer there although I couldnt afford it, when finally a year or two later I found myself working there. I knew very little at the time, but learned very quickly. Virginia, the little old Chinese lady who worked there, took me under her wind and taught me everything I know. Well, all the basics at least. I worked there for 5 years. This became a second home to me. I was there through so many changes, so many customers, and so many other employees. I became good friends with the owner, Gina, who moved the store next door to a large location. I taught classes, helped customers, and learned a hell of a lot about yarn.

Now, Im back in Ca, and have my own little yarn room. I sometimes consider myself more of a yarn collector than a knitter! haha

I have made most things, but know there is still always more and more to learn. This hobby is more than a hobby to me. For those of you out there who are crazy knitters like me, you know what I am talking about. There is just something beautiful and magical about the process of creating. Something wonderful about seeing something you created on your mother, your husband, your nephews,your grandma, and your own feet. I know knitting is a life long friend that I have made. I knit because I am happy. I knit because I'm bored. I knit because I need to make a gift, I knit in sadness and tragedy. I knit because I love it.

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Day 16-17

Ok, I have a good reason why I didnt post yesterday. There was a horrible thunderstorm here and we lost power. It was a little scary, but the moon was very bright and our house has a lot of windows. When we lit the candles we went and laid in bed and talked for like an hour or two. Adam had battery in his computer and he put on some music, and we just talked. It was raining and we could hear the raindrops on the windows. Laying there, in peace. I really appreciated that quiet night! Sometimes I get so used to all the noices, the radio, the TV, the computer, the lights, that I actually forget what silence sounds like. How soothing it is. So last night, I was thankful for peaceful moments.

Today, I did some more crafting. I started yesterday actually. I made some candles!!!! I got some soft soy wax and melted it down in my special "double boiler" I made from a pot of boiling water, a water pitcher, and a spoon. It actually works really well.

So, I melted a pound of wax some purple candle dye chips and an ounce of lavender oil.

Then poured it into my glass containers. I already secured the wicks in using this "molding sealer". I also hot glued some ribbon and flowers on the outside for decoration.

I wrapped the wicks around skewers so they would stay straight.

Then, I let cool. This morning when I woke up I found both had cracked a little on top. Adam said this was probably because they cooled too fast. I remember hearing something about this in my "research" online. Today I made a new batch, but kept them white and used jasmine scent. I put the containers in socks, then put them in the oven to cool. I think this was better, but I will post pics of these later. So, here are pictures of the 2 lavender scented ones while they were coolong.
So this crafting made me happy, and gee wiz it was so easy. I am so excited about making stuff right now. I was online looking at new ideas, and woooah I founds some good ideas!!! Stay tuned. What do you guys think!? Any questions?

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Day 15- Half way through

Are you guys getting sick of this yet?

Day 15:

Today I am thankful for traditions. Because it is saint Patrick's day I was excited to wear my new bright green shirt. Although I miss being a teacher and having kiddos threaten to pinch me.... I still was happy to wear it. I also cooked corned beef, which I LOOOOVE!!! Who had it tonight?! Who has NEVER had it??? (Sarah......)
Oh, its so salty and fatty and wonderful. I cut the fat off tonight due to my point counting, but Im sure some snuck in. I also made a DELICIOUS cabbage side dish. I didnt have time to throw in crock pot in time so i chopped up onions, shaved carrots, and red cabbage and sauteed them up using the broth left in the crock pot from cooking the meat. WONDERFUL!! (Wheres that GasEX?)

I grew up my whole childhood eating corned beef and cabbage on this day, and I think this is a great tradition! Also, heres a picture of a framed four leaf clover I keep by my bed for good luck.

Love you all!!! I wanna hear about what YOU did today!

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Day 14

Day 14: Second Chances

Today's post is simple. Today I am thankful for second chances. I gave one to a veggie that did me wrong as a kid, the artichoke. For the full detailed story see older post (food glorious food one i think). So tonight I pulled out two fat green ones from the fridge. I cut the stem to short. Popped them in the steamer contraption and waited. I had no clue when they were done, but left them in for a long time. I melted some REAL butter do dip it in. And here we go......

So, I had to ask adam all about how to eat it... (he laughed) I poked myslef on the spiky part. And was nervous and scared... BUT... I dipped it in butter and OOOOH not bad!!! I ate the whole thing, well mostly. YEAH!!! I dont know if Im going to CRAVE them yet... but, Good.

I'm all grown up and finally eating my veggies mom! So, what food have you hated since you were a kid? Give it a second chance. You might be glad you did.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Day 12 and 13

Gee Wiz. Yesterday went by so fast, with so many ups and downs. I got home last night at almost 10PM and just collapsed in bed. (of course, plenty of energy to watch the Bachelor finale!) I just forgot to blog. Please forgive me dear faithful blog readers. I am so excited that my blog is about to hit 3000 hits!!! Thats going to be my day 13 entry. I am seriously thankful for all my blog readers. I started this challenge to "cheer me up", and I am amazed at how it has. I look forward to what I am going to write, and get excited about seeing all your comments!! I HIGHLY recommend doing this challenge on your own. Today I spend the day doing homework for my stupid class, and napping. I think its the combination of the rain, lack of coffee, and 2 snoring pugs that make me so tired all day today. SIGH. I wish today was one of my higher energy days. Oh well.

As far as day 12 goes. I had a very eventful day yesterday. I went to weight watchers, and lost TWO pounds! yeah! I also went on a long walk at the dog park and saw a 16 year old pug! Makes me hopeful mine will live that long!! He was a black pug and super slow...

I met up with my friend Rachel and we went to dinner, and then went to a "meditation class". I thought this was going to be weirdo hippy crazy class maybe, but it ended up making a lot of sense. He talked about how we spend most of our lives not REALLy living in the present, but off thinking about the past or future (remember my blog the other day?!). It was all about taking some time each day to sit in a quiet place and be peaceful. NO thinking about all the junk we just normally think about. I tried this, and of COURSE, had to guide my thinking back to my breathing. Sitting still. Last night, I did it for 15 minutes at this class, and afterwards I honestly felt relaxed. Really relaxed, like I just woke up from a nice nap on a sunny day. Soon after my thoughts drifted back to worry, anxiety, and spacing out..., but showed me that its GOOD to try new things, and try every day to work towards improving your life. Even if this means just sitting in peace for a minute.

Think of how much of your life is spent in a sleepwalking state. Are you really living your life right now or are you just going through the motions and trying to get to the next place? So, today, I am thankful for trying new things. :)

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Day 11

Day 11:

Today I woke up late due to daylight savings, but it didnt matter. Today was a lazy day. I remember when day light savings threw a wrench in my "schedule". I was so busy running around going to school, working, and grading papers that one hour off made a difference. Now, I didnt even realize it was even daylight savings until later today. (all my time telling devices automatically change) It hit me today, MAN, I really do have it lucky. Besides the occasional appointment I have, time has no importance to me. I sleep when I want to, eat when I want to, wake up when I want to, and clean when I want to. Man.

Mimi three years ago would have KILLED for this, and now that I have this, all I want is to be busy again. Why cant I just be content with the life I have. Why am I constantly living in either the past (thinking about what decisions were bad, or what good times I used to have), or the future (the job I want, the family I want to have) I really should just enjoy the now. Every day is a gift, regardless of where we are in life. Thats why they call it the present right? (what movie is that from!?)

I think its just my nature to look toward the future. In a way I think its a really good thing. Making plans and goals for the future are very important in life! However, when do I ever stop and think "you know, I have it good right now." So, thats what I did today. Today I slept till when I wanted to, ate when I wanted to, and didnt clean at ALL! We lounged around on this rainy Sunday playing video games and enjoying our sweet little lives.

I think big picture here- its so much easier sometimes to complain about all the crap in our lives. Take the time to live in today and take advantange of the life you have now. Now, I want to hear about how you all feel about this. Am I alone here? Does this right true for anyone else?

What do YOU enjoy about your life right now?

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Day 10

Day 10

Reflection day. Today I am thankful for Lucy. Adam and I adopted lucy 10 years ago now. We found a breeder in Southern Ca, and drove down to get her. We had already picked out her name, and I dont remember clearly now how we did that. I think we were referring to either I Love Lucy or Lucy from Peanuts. Either way, we loved the name, made a little name tag and headed off to the town of Phelon. I remember walking into the little trailer type house in the middle of nowhere. We me the nice German older lady. She told us she had 1 male, and 2 females left. We knew we wanted a female so we passed on the FAT rolly poley "Samson", who was laying IN the kibble bowl asleep. We walked into the living room and I said "LUCY!" and waited. Suddenly this tiny, adorable, little pug came running over to us. We knew it was her! The other one just laid there. (Ended up her name was Sophia)

I remember meeting her mom, who looks a LOT like Lucy looked when she was about 4 years old. Adam and I were sitting on the ground playing with Lucy when her mom jumped on the couch and did a thorough inspection of us. It seemed to me like she was checking us out to see if we were suitable parents! Apparently she approved. She was sweet, just like Lucy.

All of the sudden, Lucys dad escaped from the back porch! He bolted in, running past us all, running over and peeing on Samson. The older, slightly disabled German couple were shouting and running around the house trying to catch him. We can see now where Lucy gets her crazy side from!!!

She was about the size of a pair of socks that were rolled into a ball. We were instant parents, and instantly in love. Lucy was a sleepy and crazy puppy. When she was asleep, she could not be roused. When she was awake, she could run, and run, and run, and run. I remember when she was tiny we kept her in a baby play pen at night, but took turns taking her out when she whined. It wasnt long before she was in bed with us.

Over the years she grew, got grey, and slowed down a bit, but has always kept her drive to please, passion for playing (and bones), and ability to make us smile. She cheers us up when we are sad and lays on our lap when were lonely. She is a true friend. I love her deeply, and cherish every day with her.

Anyone who knows Lucy knows shes a happy girl! She loves playing and showing off her toys to "friends" that visit. She really is a very special girl.

Friday, March 11, 2011

Day 9

Day 9

Last night I woke up in the middle of the night. The news was on. I sat up and saw the reports of this giant earthquake. I hate hearing about this stuff for a couple reasons. 1. I get so sad and worried for other people. 2. I am PRONE to anxiety and I live in Earthquake country.... SO I am laying there feeling sad and anxious, and you KNOW the news is doing a great job at scaring the crap out of everyone. And then... headline: "Tsunami headed for California coast". Instantly pictures of giant waves hitting Indonesia ran through my head. I was terrified. Now, remember, it was the middle of the night and my judgement was impaired, but I was terrified. I laid there wondering if I was going to die in this flood, if I should wake Adam up and hit the road or what!? This CLEARLY was crazy thinking being that I live at like 500 feet above sea level. My geologist husband was LITTLE consolation to me because he is sick and took sick drugs to sleep and was OUT... I tried waking him up to tell him of our looming death, and I get I "ehhhh Uuugg"

I managed to get back to sleep with help of some drugs. I woke up in the morning and looked out the window almost expecting to only see the top of the golden gate bridge and the skyscrapers. Nope. Sunny and calm. I flip on the news. Apparently this TSUNAMI was going to be a 1-3 FOOT wave. Wouldn't this would have been nice to say last NIGHT!!? Still, the news blew everything up locally just to scare people. All that seems to have happened was some boats were damaged in Santa Cruz. I drove to Pleasanton, and people were in crowds at the top of Grizzly Peak, presumably, to FLEE the Tsunami.... Goodness.

Through out the day pictures and videos of watching what was happening in Japan made me so sad, but has also made me extremely grateful for my safety and heath. I think we all take these simple things for granted everyday. Its also sad that it takes a tragic event like this make us all realize how good we do have it, but I guess its understandable. Sometimes its hard to see these things. We are all wrapped up in our own worlds sometimes. So tonight, I hug my pugs and my handsome geologist a little but tighter.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Day 8

Day 8:

This post is a quicky because I promised my beloved husband we would have a "computer free" night.... Today I had another good day. Since starting up weight watchers again I have been obsessed with fruit. The other night I ate the BEST mango I have EVER eaten. I cant begin to explain how good it was. I went back to the store and stocked up on fruit!! Can you tell?! Im hoping one of these mangos will be as good... I also got a "manilla" mango, which I have never had. Anyone?? OK, so I know it might be a lame post, but sometimes the simple things in life can bring us so much pleasure. What is your favorite fruit? Go get it and eat it!!!

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Day: 7

Day 7- One week down!

First of all I want to say THANK YOU for reading my blog! I am excited and amazed at how many people come here and comment. So, today... I am thankful for my friends. I spent the whole day with some of my favorite people here!

I met up with a friend, Rachel, for lunch today. Although we are still new friends, I am amazed at how strong, supportive, understanding, and just fun she is! We had a nice big salad and did a little shopping and got some starbucks. She is great! Here's a picture. :)

Then, I went to my knitting group! Since I moved here a year and a half ago, these people have been so welcoming, friendly, and amazing! Every week we sit around, knit, vent, and laugh. They are some of the most interesting people with all these crazy mad skills. They are all so different, but all fit together in this group. I dont have time or energy to talk about everyone in the group..... but I want to point out (starting from left to right) Marissa, who speaks Japanese, has an adorable daughter, and knits the most awesome socks! She is so happy and friendly! Liz, is super crafty and knowledgeable about all kinds of stuff. Whether it be a question about knitting, spinning, dying, cooking, gardening, canning, she will know the answer. Tonight she explained how to poach an egg to me. She also owns chickens, and shares the eggs! Caitlyn is a very new friend, but shes so friendly and sweet! Tabitha (with the baby), is AMAZING to me. I cant believe how supportive, thoughtful, understanding, and strong she is. I know she always has my back ;) Also, not pictured- Stephanie, who is so friendly, smart, organized, reliable, and loyal. I just love her! I also want to throw a shout out to Sarah, who is so sweet and friendly. I really enjoy seeing her smiling face!! So many others at knitting, but Im TIRED! haha

Also, my best friend Sarah, who lives in Boston. I miss her and love all our fun times! I cant wait to see her in May! I know she loves me and is the most loyal friend. I know she "gets me". I really love her!

Im just taking time to appreciate some of my new friends today. I know sometimes I take my friends for granted, but I am so so thankful for all the love and support the give, and continue to give to me. Thank you.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Day 6: Food Glorious Food!

Day 6:

The more and more I do my happy little challenge, the more and more excited I get about doing it! I wake up thinking "what can I do today......" Today I woke up and thought, "its Tuesday, it's farmers market day!" I have been going to Berkeley's market every Tuesday for the past few weeks, and really feel like I have discovered some treasure in the world. Before I just thought it was a place for... well, not a place for me, but OH how I love it now! I know I know, there are some weirdo people there, as you might expect in Berkeley. (the strange conversations I overhear... and weird noises coming from a guy playing the didgeridoo.) BUT the food is BEAUTIFUL and the people are really so nice.

I can really say that the food that I have eaten so far that I bought at market has really been fantastic. I think this is for several reasons: 1. the food is local, so it wasnt picked that long ago and didnt have to travel over oceans or countries to get to me. 2. No pesticides or chemicals (although, i dont know if i can actually "taste" those) 3. They are in season!

Oh how I love food. I'm so obsessed with food lately, and just super excited about trying new foods out and healthier ways of eating. I even bought artichokes, which i grew up HATING. I just have these very vivid memories of "artichoke night" in my house. Im SURE everyone else in my family has fond memories of this night but me. I remember the large green artichokes my mom just pulled from the steamer, and the GIANT bowl of mayonaise. I just remember people scooping the cold, white, wiggly mayonise and forcing it into their mouth. I vividly remember my sister LICKING the mayonaise off her fingers. (love ya sis!) I WAS DISCUSTED!!! Oh, did I mention I loathed mayonaise.... So, I dont think it was the artichokes per se....Every veggie deserves a second chance....

I am so excited to share with you my new find. My new discovered "treasure"... I was buying some lemons when I saw a box of these fruits. When I asked the woman about them she said they were delicious and offered me a sample. MMMMMMMMM yes very good. SO, I bought one (this one is smaller... they werent cheep). SO- MY challenge to you. What is this fruit?!!! I know of course because I snapped a picture of the sign. If any one guesses correctly, I will personally send to them a finished bar of my handmade lavender soap!!! (will be done in 5 weeks). SO be honest and dont look online for help...... no cheaters. Post your guess in the comments for a chance to win!!!!
Hint: it tastes like a mix between mango and pear. No cheating. Good luck.

See you all tomorrow! OOOOH, and I got my FIRST SPROUT on my veggies- lettuce!

Monday, March 7, 2011

Day Five

Day 5:

Oh my goodness. I'm sort of wishing I made this a "10 day challenge". I'm having a harder and harder time coming up with things to write. I hope you all don't lose interest and stop reading. Please dont. I love all my readers. I already have fun crafty plans for later in the week, but just didnt get to it today.

SO. What am I thankful for today? Well, today I decided to do something good for my body. I joined Weight Watchers again. I have been doing a VERY good job for the first time in my life at MAINTAINING my weight, which is something I have never done in my adult life. I am either losing, or gaining(and havent tried either way). It's been over a year now since I have had any significant gain, so I am thankful for that.

I have really tried to make eating healthier part of my life. I rarely EVER eat fast food anymore, I try to eat more "whole" foods. I limit refined sugars and breads (thanks to my wheat free life...), and I try and eat less hormones and eat more organic and clean. I pat myself on the back. I would like to start losing now, but I want to make sure to do whats right for my body and my mind. For ME this means to eat a lot of super healthy food and try to enjoy it!

For all the horrible things I have done to my body over the years, it still runs. It still does what I need it to do (mostly), and I take it completely for granted. Think about all the things your body does in one day, and all the horrible things we do and say to it. Today I am thankful for my body. I love my body.

Tomorrow I am going to the farmers market again, and need some ideas on how to eat some leafy greens. I saw a lot there last time, and just have never been so successful cooking it unless I literally cook the crap out of it and cover with butter... Any ideas on how to cook kale, chard, or greens in a healthy way?

So, to a healthy and happy body. Wish me luck. :) Tonights dinner: Salmon with roasted garlic and onions, Broccoli, and rice. Nothing fancy, just thought I needed a picture for this day.

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Day Four

Day 4: Day of rest and reflection....

Today I am thankful for my family. They are amazing, wonderful, and supportive. For those of you who don't know, I have 3 siblings: Bekka, Matt, and John. I have some wonderful memories growing up and I thought I would share a couple that stand out to me today.. They might make you smile because they make me smile!!

I love this picture. I think this was the last time we were all together. I hope to be all together again soon.

Bekka: I remember being about 9 or 10 years old (she would be 14 or 15??). I had a sort of obsessive younger sister complex at the time. I used to go into her room and go through her stuff, put on her clothes, jewelry, and perfume.... listen to her music.... yeah. obsessed. One time I remember hiding in here closet to "scare" her when she got out of the shower. I remember hiding in her closet and then jumping out and watching her flip out.. OOOOh fun times. Over the years she has been a true friend who I love very much.

Matt: So many stories about Matt. Mainly of him and his shenanigans... but I will keep in nice...
I remember walking past his room when i was like 13 (he would have been 16-17) and watching him make muscles in the mirror. I laughed. OK, I also remember him being a very protective brother. At the time, I thought he was being a drag, but deep down I loved it because I knew he cared. Once i was getting ready for a dance.. .I was wearing a dress that was very tight and pretty short. I was also wearing knee high stockings, and baby doll shoes. I thought it was super cute, but Matt thought it was super slutty and demanded I change. Also, he was at the same dance and when I was slow dancing a little too close at the dance (man, i sounds really slutty in this story..), Matt got on the microphone and was like "MY sister is dancing WAY too close. She needs to stop" It was hilarious! I knew he cared and despite his relentless teasing.... I knew he loved me.
John- OOOOH John. I don't even know where to begin. We were SO close growing up I dont know which story to tell... hmmm... should i embarrass him?... haha
MOst John stories involve me dressing him up, tricking him, or getting peed on because my dad wouldnt pull ov er the car, and i was supposed to "hold johns cup..." (face..). THIS story is makes me laugh every time I think of it. This happened when we were living in Ben Lomond, ca. I was in HS, so he was in Middle school. I was sitting on the toilet and was out of toliet paper. I yelled to John "JOHN! Can you bring me some TP?!" There was a LONG pause...... then I hear "OOOHHH TOILET PAPER!!!!! I thought you meant an Indian house...." I will never understand how in his 14 years of life he never figure out that TP was short for toilet paper, but I laugh everytime I think of that. Love you John.
My Mom and Dad:
Growing up I dont think a kid could have two better parents. They were a true team. With 4 kids you have to imagine that things got hectic, homework didnt always get finished, dinner was sometimes rushed and eaten in the car, and time was short sometimes. But, in all this chaos and madness they stuck together. If times got tough, my dad would figure it out. I never felt like I was left wanting anything. Even if this meant two jobs while in school. My mom always took time to tell us how special we are even if she was stressed because she had 4 kids, a job, and going to school. I cant remember seeing them fight, although I know they must have at some point. I know they respected eachother and showed me what a marriage was supposed to me. I knew their love was true. Still is today. Best friends and partners through good times and hard times.
This brings me to my best friend, true love, and partner through thick and thin- Adam. Like my parents, we are a true team. As a kid I used to imagine my future husband, and my future life, and I wondered if he would be amazing, handsome, smart, and romantic. Well, I don't know what genie's bottle I rubbed, but I got the best man for me!!! We have been together now almost 13 years, and married for 8, and time has just gone by so fast. I consider myself the luckiest wife alive. (these pictures are of us about 12 years ago, and us this last vday)

And last on todays list (but I have PLENTY of other extended family I could write about... but my hands hurt), Our two puggie babies Lucy and Mango. Lucy is going to be 11 this year, and Mango will be 9. I cant believe that, but its true. We love them so much, i think we forget they are actually dogs. They make us laugh, smile, and bring joy to our lives every day. We cherish every single moment we get with them.

For now, thats it. I hope you enjoyed todays post.
I will leave you with a picture of my cut soap now. I got 20 bars and they smell SOOO good. I have to let them cure now for 6 weeks before using. They are wonderful!!!