Sunday, October 16, 2016

Weekly Reads, Vol. 88

I'm thinking about changing the name of this fixture in the near future. I really like doing it because I enjoy sharing posts by other bloggers, but sometimes life gets away from me and I can't make it weekly. Perhaps it could become a twice-monthly thing. Or even just once a month.  Thoughts?

Yesterday was Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Day. I know quite a few women who have gone through this. Chances are you do too ... and you may not even know it. It's not something that's talked about often enough and those who experience it end up feeling isolated as a result. I'm really glad Jana shared her story with pregnancy loss and also offered advice to herself (and maybe others) on how to keep going.

I have a lot of thoughts on recent events involving Donald Trump and things he's said. I've been hesitant to share them here because I tend not to get too political in this space. But my feelings about what he's said are not about politics. They're about humanity. Steph is never afraid to share her thoughts, and in this case (and many others) she says exactly what I'm thinking.

Jennifer learned a lot from Amy Schumer's book, but not just about the actress, also about herself. I haven't been super interested in picking up the book, but now I might have to add it to my pile.

Happy Sunday everyone!

Thursday, October 13, 2016

Stuff & Things 10/13

:: I'm going to a concert 45 minutes away tonight. It starts at 8 p.m. Even though I'm very excited to see the musician, I am starting to think I'm too old for late weeknight concerts.

:: Last night I got to attend a special event for the Iowa Wild called Rookie Camp. It's for new season ticket holders (even partial packages like mine). We got to go on the ice with a few of the players, check out the control room and press row, tour the locker rooms, and have Q and A time with a coach. It was a really cool evening, and I'm even more excited for Friday night's opener.

:: The other day, while I was getting my shellac manicure removed, I saw a lady next to me getting her nails dipped in some weird powder. I did some research and learned more about this organic powder nail polish that's supposed to last two months and be better for your nails. Has anyone tried it?

:: I'm taking another certification test for work next week, so blogging will be taking a backseat.

What's up with you this week?

Wednesday, October 12, 2016

What I'm Loving Wednesday 10/12

I'm loving ...

... lazy Sundays. Leaving behind my library job was not an easy decision, but it's kind of nice to wake up whenever I want, make breakfast with the boy, and laze around watching TV shows/YouTube/movies for the rest of the day. It's a decent balance for the craziness of the rest of the week.

... the flowers I treated myself to last Friday. $10 from a roadside stand that's been out every Friday for the last few weeks. I'm glad I got out there before they closed it for the season.

... that the brewery where I work won a GOLD MEDAL at the Great American Beer Festival in Denver for Mexican Spring, an agave lime wheat beer. This medal is a really big deal, but it's hard to describe to folks who aren't super involved in the beer culture. The owners and our head brewer are very excited about the honor.

... people who have been kind with their condolences on the end of my Rangers' baseball season. There have been a few on my social media feed who weren't so kind. Trust me, I'll remember that when their team loses something in ugly fashion. OK, so I really won't do anything because I tend to take the high road.

... that hockey starts this week. I'm ready for something to somewhat fill the void recently vacated by baseball.

What are you loving this week?

Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Show Us Your Books: September

Life According to Steph

I finished three books in September, which isn't terrible considering how busy I was.

I love this football romance series. It's well-written with interesting characters and sweet love stories. I enjoy the behind-the-scenes look at the football business as well. Sure, it's likely dramatized for the book, but Ms. Murray displays a decent knowledge of the game and the business.

I loved the movie version of this, so I wanted to read the book. It's a very wordy novel, but I appreciated the bigger glimpse into Sutter's mind and what makes him the way he is. The movie seemed to be equally about him and Aimee, but the book was mostly about him, which was an adjustment, but I liked it anyway. This is another situation where the book and movie are both good and have their place.

This has been on my to-read list for a long time. Everyone and their sister has read it already. The movie comes out next week. I figured it was time to dive in.  It started out a little slow and confusing. Every time I thought I was starting to figure out what was happening, there was another twist. By the time I got midway through the book, I could not put it down. I had to know what was going on. I'm not good at getting to movies and I haven't heard great things about the adaptation, but I'm sure I'll see it eventually.


This was a pretty good reading month. But somehow I am completely hooked on suspense thrillers now even though I keep telling myself to pick up something lighter. Ah well.

What are you currently reading?

Monday, October 10, 2016

Music Monday: Kate Voegele - "High Road"

I was up way too late last night, listening to my Rangers get swept out of the postseason. And then commiserating on social media with other Rangers fans. Predictably, there were fans of other teams who felt the need to tweet and post their mockery of my team. Fans of teams who weren't even in the postseason. It's rather annoying in any case. And it stings extra when then pain of loss of still fresh.

While I was listening to the game, I was also reading updates from the presidential debate on Twitter. I don't like to get political on here, but I don't think being disgusted with the recently released Donald Trump audio is political. His comments had nothing to do with politics. They were about humans. Women, specifically. And his words only remind us that there are some people who do not see women as humans and definitely not as equals. It's ridiculous, and it makes my blood boil.

So, I decided this song was a good choice for today as I remember to try and stick to the high road.

Friday, October 7, 2016

September fitness recap

I know the journey to getting in better shape is a slow and steady one.  And little goals along the way will help me reach my overall goal.  So I have fitness benchmarks I want to reach each month.

Work out 16 days a month.  Grade = A
Nailed it.

Strength training once a week.  Grade = A
I am fully in love with BodyPump again, so I've been making sure to get this in weekly.

Track my food each day.  Grade = A-
I kind of slack on the weekends, but otherwise, I'm very good at this.

12 Races in 2016 update:
I didn't plan well, so I didn't get into an organized race, but I did do a virtual 5K. I'm still counting it!


Last week's workouts
Friday: Off
Saturday: 2-mile run + 1/2-mile walk (35 minutes)
Sunday: Off 
Monday: 3-mile run + 1/2 mile walk (50 minutes)

Tuesday: BodyPump (60 minutes)
Wednesday: FitFusion (60 minutes)

Thursday: Off

This week was infinitely better than last week. I didn't have any midweek brewery shifts or plans, so that helped considerably.

Tuesday, October 4, 2016

Don't yuck my yum

I saw that phrase in a Facebook group last week. Someone posted about a new restaurant coming to Des Moines and because it's a chain, some people got upset. Admittedly, I'm not a huge fan of chains. I try to eat, drink, and shop local when I can. That said, I don't completely boycott chains. And a new business in our city should be welcomed. Anyhow ... someone commented on the post that they wouldn't be going to this new place and they didn't know why the original poster was excited.

Come on now.

Do we have to be Debbie Downers about everything someone else likes that we don't?

Can't we just let someone enjoy what brings them joy even if it doesn't do anything for us?

I've been a victim of this. I like a lot of things that people either hate or simply don't understand.

- Baseball
- Iowa State Cyclones
- Coffee
- Craft beer
- Cats
- John Mayer
- Boybands

That's just a short list of things off the top of my head that people have tried to crap on whenever I mention how much I like them.

I mean, have you seen these memes?

There's one for just about every interest.

And it's annoying.

I'm not going to play innocent here. I've been guilty of this in the past.  There are things other people like that I don't understand and don't like.  Most of the time I don't comment, but I'm sure I have tried to piss in someone else's Cheerios from time to time.  Consider this my public apology to anyone I might have victimized.

Like what you like.

Enjoy whatever you want.

As long as you're not hurting anyone or trying to force me to like it, I don't care.

Do you.

Just don't yuck my yum.

Monday, October 3, 2016

Music Monday: Haddon Cord - "When I Am Your Woman"

Last week, I saw Eric Hutchinson live for the fourth time. He is always fantastic, and I felt so much joy during the show. Somehow, even with a larger catalog, he always plays the songs I want to hear. Makes me happy.

He also tends to bring some pretty great openers along on tour. The first of the two was this woman. Her voice was haunting and pretty. Her lyrics and melodies were ear-catching. I made sure to look her up after I got home, and it's safe to say I will be buying her stuff. She's so good.

This serves as a reminder to always get there for the opener.

Sunday, October 2, 2016

Weekly Reads, Vol. 87

Today is a good day! I get to pick up my Iowa Wild ticket package tonight at the team's scrimmage. While I'm still fully in the throes of baseball season (hooray postseason!) and am enjoying football as well, I'm also ready to reignite my relationship with hockey. I still have so much to learn, and I'm looking forward to seeing my hockey family.  (Click here to read more about my first season as a hockey fan.) 

And now for some great posts by others.

I am very guilty of downplaying my own achievements. Small or big, we should celebrate them all. Holly hammers the message home about removing the word "just" from our vocabularies.

Monica is a fountain of good advice for runners. This week, she's back with tips for healthy toenails. She also wrote a hilariously accurate post about the stages of a long run. I remember all of these from when I was doing my half-marathon training two years ago.

Taylor adequately summed up my anger, hurt, and rage over the pit bull ban in Montreal.

I try really hard to live my life with no regrets. Sometimes I look back at decisions I made and wonder if I should have made different ones.  Jana offers a good reminder about how multifaceted the term "regrets" is.

There's still time to sign up for the Great Pumpkin Swap being hosted by Kristin and Becky!!

Friday, September 30, 2016

September's Virtual 5K recap

Well, I didn't plan very well for my races this month. But I didn't completely fail.  I realized about mid-September that I was not going to get into an organized race. Even though I've had a few months of doing two running events, I still hated the thought of not doing one this month. So ... I decided to do a virtual 5K.

Tuesday afternoon, I set out on a stretch of my neighborhood trail that I haven't visited in a few years and I logged 3.1 miles. I started out feeling kind of sluggish, but I felt better as I jogged along. The sports radio broadcast in my ears was kind of a nice switch from music. It gave me something else to think about, yet I didn't really have a sense of time like I would with a playlist. I also didn't wear my Garmin watch and instead just listened to cues from my Nike Run Club app.

Even though it wasn't a true race, I gave it my best race-like effort and was pleased with myself when my personal 5K was done.

Have you ever had to modify a fitness goal?

Last week's workouts
Friday: Walked 2 miles at lunch.
Saturday: Walked 6 miles to and from the game, so it counts.
Sunday: Off 
Monday: Off 
Tuesday: Virtual 5K 
Wednesday: Off 
Thursday: BodyPump (60 minutes)

Not the greatest week of workouts, and I definitely fell out of the routine I mentioned last week.  But I'm not terribly worried.

Thursday, September 29, 2016

Stuff & Things 9/29

:: I know people say this a lot and it gets annoying, but I cannot believe this month is almost over. Where did September go?

:: I had to work Monday evening, so I didn't get to watch the debates. But social media let me know what I missed.

:: True crime podcasts are my jam lately. I've mentioned True Crime Garage before, and it's still my favorite, but I am also enjoying Generation Why, Accused, All Things Awful with Adam & Alex, and Casefile True Crime. Yep. My iPod is pretty full of stories of murder and disappearances.

:: Last weekend, my boyfriend and I made a yummy dish. Brown rice, shrimp, andouille sausage, and broccoli. I feel like it needs a name.

:: There's a lot of negativity flying around out there lately. I'm trying my best not to let it seep into my head and emotions, but that's getting to be a very difficult fight. 

What's on your mind?

Wednesday, September 28, 2016

What I'm Loving Wednesday 9/28

I'm loving ...

... that the Rangers are the American League West Champs!!  I followed the game on my phone last Friday night, anxiously awaiting the time to celebrate. It meant staying up late, but it was so worth it.

... that I got to see an Iowa State football win on Saturday with some of my favorite people. There aren't likely to be a ton of wins (and certainly none that lopsided) this season. It was worth the sunburn.

... that I get to see Eric Hutchinson perform tonight. I am obsessed with his latest album and can't wait to hear some of the tracks live.

... that Kristin and Becky have brought back the Great Pumpkin Swap. If you like getting fall goodies in the mail and shopping to send goodies to others, go sign up!

... the fall door decoration I made last night. It's a straw wreath form wrapped in leaf garland, which is held with floral wire. So easy. And it's perfect.

... these two cartoons I posted on Facebook recently. Nailed it.

What are you loving this week?

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