Friday, December 31, 2010

2010 I am over you.

2010 has been a year of ups and downs. 

It was a year of travelling. It started in Denver:




Then I went to Louisville:




Blogher 2010 was a lot of fun!




Finally, I rounding my travelling out with a random trip to Pittsburgh:



2011 is shaping up to be a travel year to with trips already planned for a group cruise in June and Blogher ‘11 in San Diego. Who knows what air fare deals I will find next. 

I did some knitting in 2010. It is another resolution of mine to knit more and to learn how to crochet.




I have been working on the Susie Hoodie from the book, More Big Girl Knits. I will finish this in 2011.

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My mood was all over the place in 2010. It on a down note since I was poofed and Dad had the first strokes before Christmas and  then took a little bit of a plunge this fall. I am on top of it and it will be better in 2011.

I really want Dad to have a stroke free 2011 and I have fears that it won’t be. I worry about him a lot. 2010 was all downhill for my Mom and 2011 will not be different but I want her to be happy and don’t want her to suffer.


I am thankful that I have continued with this blog. It has helped me through the hard and the good times. When I started the blog, I never would have thought people besides me would read it.  It will be around for 2011.

I will not wait for life to take me for a ride in 2011. I will be taking life for a ride in 2011. Watch out world.

Thursday, December 30, 2010

2011 Healthy Living Goals

 

I've decided to join a weight loss challenge on Shrinkingjeans.Net. To start the challenge off, I have decided on some 2011 healthy living goals. For me, it is all about what goes on inside. What food I eat, how I work it off and what is going on in my crazy brain. Because it is as good of a time as ever, here are my Healthy Living Goals for 2011:

 

1. Get to the gym 3 days a week and do Wii Fit Plus each morning. I have a calendar and I will put a sticker on each day I succeed. I works for kids and me.

2. Log my food. I pay for Weight Watchers. Use it.

3. Think of three positive things to say about my self each day. That is going to be a challenge.

4. Stay on top of depression. When it starts to take over, it takes over everything. I just don’t care about myself. I get very down and getting off of the couch is a chore. It is hard to do the above when I am depressed.

I want to post a picture but my hair is wet so I will do that after I go to get my hair done this afternoon. I know silly Winking smile

I am ashamed and horrified at my weight but I am just going to put it out there. 274. I am not going to beat myself up as I look at it. It is what it is.  <SIGH>

Here’s to a wonderful 2011.

Goodbye 2010.

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Sometimes You Feel Like A Nut…

There used to be a Almond Joy and Mounds commercial that said, “Some days you feel like a nut, some days you don’t.”   Today I feel a bit nutty. First, I have had this jingle in my head all day. ALL DAY. Secondly, at work, I was laughing, a lot. Two of my coworkers were joking about something silly and I could not stop laughing. I had no idea what they were laughing about but it was funny anyways.

Maybe someone spiked my Sprite Zero at lunch. I also think someone spiked Boot’s food today because he has been running around all night. Of course, it does not help that I have been chasing him and it contributes to all of the craziness.

I think I am going to do a little shopping tomorrow before I get my hair done. Having my hair washed by someone else has to be one of the best feelings  and I look forward it every time. I probably won’t have anything done really to change it for no.  My stylist has said more than once that I need to go blond. The thought scares me. I don’t look like a blond. Besides, with red hair, I am different and I like that.

I have been thinking of goals for 2011. Some weight related, some mental health related and others related because of my lack of focus when I get depressed. No resolutions, just goals. I have also been going over 2010 in my mind and is has been a crazy year. I am looking forward to talking about it.

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Those darn sniveling pigs….

You may or may not know what I am referring to. If you do, I have been bitten.

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Yes. I have been wearing the battery of my phone down nightly playing this. I have become flustered and elated when I get past a dreaded stage. The sounds those evil pigs make is hilarious!  At least when I am playing, I am not thinking of other bad things. Right? Smile 

I ventured to work through the snowy tundra today. We got about 18 inches of snow here. It makes for a fun walk to the subway when only parts of the sidewalks are clear and when you have to walk in the street, it is so poorly plowed, that you may be plowed down. Climbing over mounds of snow to get back on the sidewalk while carrying a laptop bag, a huge purse, etc. is considered exercise, correct? 

I also got to the gym tonight so that is extra. I am trying to get back to normalcy, whatever that is. I  am feeling ok today. Not great. Not bad. Just kind of there. I am looking forward to tomorrow at 5 pm because I will  be off for a 4 day weekend! I can’t wait even though I don’t have plans just the thought of it makes me giddy.

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Snowy View

I hope everyone had a Merry and safe Christmas and if you are in New England, a good blanket for a day like today. This is what is like outside of my door.

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It’s snowing! The weather people are going crazy. News round the clock with nothing but stay off the roads.  Today was a good day to do some cleaning, set up my new red Wii and watch the Patriots clinch home field advantage. I am excited out the Wii. I have three games – Wii Sports, Super Mario Brothers and Wii Fit. Do you have any Wii games to recommend?

Christmas in the Jen household was quiet. There was only a little bit of family drama only to over by dinner. Secret Sister had be harping on my Dad buying my mother the wrong size night gown and she would just not let it go. It bothers Dad that she has to point out his problems over and over. By dinner, they were talking and not yelling. We had a nice ham dinner, exchanged gifts then my other sister, Theresa and my brother-in-law with the boys came over to have dessert and presents. Everyone was happy then I was left with a disaster.

I was productive today but lonely. I was trapped inside because of the snow and I just felt alone. I miss having someone this time of year especially when it is cold and snowy out. It must be the bad weather that brings it out or the fact I am stuck here with nothing but my thoughts. With New Years next week, I am going to think of goals for the year. I am ready to bring 2011 on.

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Merry Christmas!

I hope Santa was good to everyone this year. Have a safe and wonderful Christmas!

 

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Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Not Dreaming of a White Christmas

I am trying hard to get into the Christmas spirit but the snow is not helping. The one positive thing about the snow is that it is not 2 feet but it is a big nuisance because it is falling, creating miserable traffic because Boston drivers are not good at driving period, especially in the snow,  then you have crabby people on the subway. I am not one of the crabby people except when I found out I messed up my knitting pattern (I am knitting a tam) and I had to rip it out. Not good.

Another strange thing is that after a year of no activity on Plenty of Fish, I am being inundated with emails. Craziness. Where were these people 4 months ago? Most of them live in Rhode Island and based on my luck with the Rhode Island man aka the poofer, I am wary. What is about men from Rhode Island? Is there someone local? After all, based on local census numbers, there are lots of single people about.

I had my review at work. It was a so-so review. Yes, I have been disorganized, discombobulated and overloaded yet I didn’t really need to see it on paper. Time to get back to the productive Jen. I have never really been organized or not overloaded on the job but discombobulated should stop.  I got a small raise as well, which is good because last year I did not get a raise at all. 

It is getting down to the Christmas wire. Everyone ready?

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

San Diego Bound in 2011

I have my new modem up and running finally. I have been plagued by computer problems it seems but I will put it behind me.

I bought my ticket for Blogher ‘11 in San Diego and booked my hotel room for a few extra days in San Diego. I am not flying out to the West Coast for two days only. I have to start to save my pennies now! The hotel room is going to be expensive.  It will give me something to strive for.  2011 is going to be a good year.

I am mostly done with Christmas shopping. I just have to get a gift card and a card to hold cash and I am done. Dad has been bragging about being done with shopping and how much I am going to like my gift. I am sure I will like anything I get. I have more gift giving anxiety then gift getting hatred.

Because I have spent some time wrapping and Boots has spent some time attacking the paper, ribbons, scissors and whatever else he can while I wrap, I bring this via my friend for your enjoyment:

Ha!

I am feeling a bit better in general. I was talking to Dad today about being depressed. I talked about how it stalks me and it is a battle. He understood. Normally, he just tells me “cheer up” or to stop taking things so seriously, but not today. Telling me to cheer up, is like telling me I need to lose weight. I know. Don’t remind me. I remind myself all too often.

Speaking of that, I was looking in the mirror today and I said to myself that I am not half bad looking but when I look I look at a picture of myself, I despise the way I look. I hate the ugliness of 98% of the pictures of me. I am not the most photogenic of people, but the difference is striking I think.

I hope you are 98% done with your shopping. Stay away from the malls on Christmas Eve!

Monday, December 20, 2010

Wrapping Wonderland

This weekend was one big whirl of shopping. I got 99% of it done. I hate the shopping part of Christmas and I ended up buy stuff for me over gifts a bit too much. Now, the second least favorite part will be happening tonight - the wrapping. I have bags of presents all over my apartment (never mind the bins for the Christmas decorations still out) and I must get them wrapped.

Outside of shopping, my mood was fairly low. I was not feeling well. I was having sharp pains and my fibroids or something like them are probably back but I don't want to go to the doctors, spend $30 to be told nothing. I have spend a ton of money in tests just to find out I am strange - between my migraines and my asymmetrical self and my cursed menstrual world. There is nothing they can do or will do. So I just live with it and I am tired of giving my money for these tests. 

I have a love and hate relationship with Christmas. I like the colors and the holiday but this time of year is incredibly lonely for me. I feel alone. Sitting in my empty apartment really brought it out. I have been busy and life has been non-stop lately but there is just something missing. It has been a year since I was dumped by the poofer and time has really flown by.

I have a much needed day off tomorrow to take Dad to a neurology appointment but I have also have to do a few errands for him as well. I am a good daughter.

Congratulations to Lootz on winning the subscription to Real Simple!

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Pictures of animals help everything

In high school, I volunteered one afternoon a week at the VA Hospital in Brockton, MA and played games with the veterans, who lived there, as part of a religion class. Most were World War II paralyzed veterans. We listened to music, played games like Scrabble and I loved their stories. I wonder what happened to many of them.  

Part of what brought this up is I have been ruminating over my past but not really in the same way as before. I have been chewing my thoughts about some things I haven't thought about since it happened. Before, it was basically negative events in my life but now, it is a mix of things like what happened to those vets.


It does remind me of cows chewing hay.  Or when I searched for ruminating images, this gorgeous sheep came up. Maybe I should have stuck with the farmer way back when.



Tonight, I will be baking cookies though I am not sure how many. I have a potluck party at work Friday then I maybe have a cookie swap Friday night. If I have the cookie swap, tonight is my only time to bake but I am not sure the cookie swap is happening. To bake lots of cookies or not. It could be dangerous. Cookies and milk at Jen's apartment otherwise!

I should have email at home soon. Verizon is sending me a new modem. I will be getting flexible tubing at the hardware store for the cords. The war continues. He waits until I am gone to strike. Cats are quite smart and don't get enough credit sometimes.

Don't forget to enter my Real Simple magazine giveaway!



Tuesday, December 14, 2010

I am... (plus a little giveaway)

  • Strong - Yes I am. I have my self defense mechanisms but I have withstood a lot of family problems over the last 5 years, my Mom's death sentence and lots of personal trauma and I am still going strong. Hiccups happen.
  • Willing to admit I get lonely. Turning to food is not the answer. Food can not talk. Food does not laugh or purr. Food just makes me feel bad 2 minutes later.  Thank goodness I have the little chewer, Boots, because life would be 10 times lonelier.
  • Really behind on Christmas shopping. I have gift anxiety. Will they like it? What to get? The pressure can be overwhelming sometimes then I have fears they will hate it.
  • Without Internet at home due to the little chewer. The victim this time: my modem's power cord. The bitter spray is not working. Can I go to Home Depot or a place like it and get those flexible plastic hoses like they have on vacuum cleaners?
I have an unsponsored giveaway. I have to renew my Real Simple subscription and I can get a free subscription when I renew my subscription. If you would like a 12 month subscription to Real Simple, please leave a comment and I will randomly pick a winner on Saturday.


Sunday, December 12, 2010

Looking like Christmas

It may be pouring and windy out but it is feeling a little like Christmas in my apartment.

 

christmas tree 2010

I actually did a little bit of shopping today. I got my father his Christmas gift. Then I went to see my Mom but she was not talkative or lucid today. At the nursing home she is in, they have a giving tree. The residents put what they want – generally chocolates, socks or a night gown and people pick their name and get the gifts. I picked 5 names.

I am feeling a bit better. This roller coaster week is over and hopefully, next week will be better.  I did not get the sleep I really wanted but I am feeling a bit better in general. Winter is such a tough time of year for me. I hope that I will be able to kept my mood up after the holidays and not come crashing down.

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Struggling

The last couple of days have been a struggle. Dad was in the hospital again. Luckily, he is out as I write this but it topped off a couple of bad days. It all started when an acquaintance said to me , "You'd be so pretty if you'd lose all the weight." That really dug deep into me and festered. It had an affect on me that hurt more than I want to admit.

I was worried about Dad. He currently has a heart that pumps at 70% capacity. A fill in for his primary care doctor had done an EKG and saw a reading that was concerning. They told him to go to the emergency room, which he did. At the emergency room, they would not listen to what he had to say about his cardiac condition and did all these test on him to find out what we already know. He has been released to follow up with his cardiologist, which he was doing already.

The combination of the two things and a big mistake at work, had me crying in a grocery store parking lot last night. I could not stop for 10 minutes. All these thoughts of not being good enough or pretty and worry for Dad set me over the edge. I recovered enough to go in and buy some groceries that I needed but the damage was done.

I am really looking forward to the weekend. I hope to relax. I am going to a cupcake holiday tea on Saturday and I hope to put my Christmas tree up. I really hope to sleep in. I don't have to be up early and I plan not getting up early. With the cold weather really upon us now, it just makes me want to hibernate.

I need a mental health day off. Maybe to start Christmas shopping because I have not started yet!

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

The Way Home

I am happy to be on my way home via Amtrak as I type this. The last two days were a whirlwind of meeting my many tenants in New York City, wild broker parties and in culminated in a green tea pedicure and manicure before we left for the train. I love to travel when it is for fun but I could do without the work involved in travelling for work.

The broker party was held in a new swanky New York Italian restaurant. There was open bar the whole night and it was packed. Plus, they had the Patriots versus the Jets and as much as I tried to ignore the game, I could not. It was on a few teams and I was one of a few onlookers. I was mesmerized. After hearing all day that the Jets needed to beat the Patriots, it was fairly cool to watch the game as one of the only Pats fans in a sea of Jets fans. The win made the party sweeter.

I need a few days off to recover. I definitely need to take a day off to shop next week. I have not even thought about Christmas shopping yet.

I am sort of looking forward to getting back to my old routine as I had started to do before I left for New York. I did a ton of walking but night excesses kept me from waking up early. I want to sleep in my own bed tonight too.

Hopefully, Amtrak will be fast getting me home.

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Sneaking in a Post

Scene: Business Center at the the hotel

Feeling: I feel like some kid trying to get the computer time in before their parents get home.

I am in NYC. The dragon's den considering the game tomorrow but I am here until Tuesday for work. The good thing is that I will get to see all of tenants here in NYC for the first time after talking to some of them for seven years. Tomorrow is an open bar broker's party that me and my boss are attending. It could be dangerous. I have heard really wild things about the party and I brought my dresses from Blogher to wear. I am looking forward to it. It is the first time I have been excited about my job in a while. 
I have been feeling okay. I spent yesterday volunteering at the home for families in crisis decorating it for the holidays. I participated in Harpoon Help's Holiday Help event. It was a lot of fun. Not only do you get some free beer from Harpoon after, but you help people who really need it. That made me happy. 

I did not have the chance to clean like I wanted to since I left at 10 am this morning but I will get to it this week. I brought my workout clothing to work out in the morning and I am just going to chill out in my room after I am done typing this.

The hotel does not have free wifi (boo!) so I am going to try to get in a post over the next two days if I can get to Starbucks or someplace else with wifi. If not, I will post on Tuesday night when I get home. 




Friday, December 3, 2010

Connections

In therapy this morning, I realized that maybe my downward spiral went a little further downward then I thought. I talked about how I was using credit cards more then usual and how I had forgotten to pay a bill or two then said that I have been somewhat less then diligent on cleaning my apartment. She pointed out how it is all related and that she did not realize that my depression was that bad.

I hadn't really thought about it either then it made sense. I had been spiraling down on that slippery slope and as that was getting out of control, other areas of my life were also suffering.

I try to be honest with myself here. If I use this blog as a tool to help, then I do realize that I was fooling myself a bit. Now that I have gotten that in control, I need to get the rest of my out of control life back in order.

Tomorrow, I am volunteering for Harpoon Helps. It is a great event where you help decorate the city for the holidays and then Harpoon rewards you with some beer. After that I am cleaning.

I get paid on Tuesday, so I am going to also write out all of my bills. The Consumerist blog offered a consumer budget spreadsheet this week that I am going to work on this weekend. I need to get a handle on this too.

My eating is under control though this morning, I did not eat breakfast. I had a chicken and cranberry salad sandwich for lunch with baked chips. I was starved by then. I had a project that needed to be completed at work ASAP and I neglected to eat. I will be stepping on the scale for the first time in 2 weeks tomorrow morning. I am hoping to see something good.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

In the Mindset

There is something about listening to the pouring rain hit the windows that brings me down. Maybe it just makes me lonely. The apartment is cold and I can hear the wind blowing outside. Maybe it is what’s going on with Dad or a combination of all three things.

Dad’s MRI went well. I am glad I went with because he needed help talking to the staff and I was there to help. He says I am his right hand woman now. I don’t mind helping even if he is a big pain sometimes. I am worried. His arm has been numb for a week. I hope it is not another stroke though.  I did not meet anyone at this MRI center. I only saw one man there, the MRI technician, who brought the disk out to Dad.

I want to copy my food journal from my WW Points Plus tracker to post on my blog but I can not figure out how to do it. I have seen it done on other blogs so I know it can be done. I am investigating it further. I stayed within my points but I spent 8 points on a grande non-fat peppermint mocha latte at Starbucks. I did not expect it to be 8 points but I also needed it to get my points and a needed dairy serving for the day.

I had a bad head ache tonight so I skipped the gym. I did download Cardio Trainer and JEFIT to my Droid. I took my measurements and will track workouts with both of those programs. Do you use either of them? Do you like them?

I need to take a new “before” photo. I will try to do that over the next couple of days. I am in full blown weight loss mode it seems. I am determined that this is the last time I will lose the weight. I am tired of going up and down like a yo-yo.

I am off to watch Top Chef. In the commercials, I am liking Marcel’s look, especially his eyes. I may have to cheer for his foams and all.