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(Semi) Wordless Wednesday: Things that make me smile edition.

stickerLife is good sticker. Cuz it is.

mayflower1 Flowers in (almost) full bloom… and my macro lens always = love.

white More flowers.

purpleGet the point yet?

shoes Rediscovering old shoes. Although these ones give me blisters, I think they’re so purty.

cat And my cat, Bay.. of course.

cat2What’s making you smile today?

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It’s all about perspective.

I’m learning that life can be so different, if you look at things a different way. Trying to be more zen, if you will. I’m not zen. I let everything bother me. Seriously, everything. I can hold a grudge for ages, I can grumble about something minor for hours, if not days. Definitely not zen. You know who IS zen? My bestie, mother of the cutest baby in the world:

 Granted, how can you not be zen with a baby as cute as this?

I take my zen tips from her… and tend to fail. But lately I’ve been working extra hard.

Take yesterday, for example. I was driving home from work and my car starting acting funky (shuddering when I tried to accelerate, and generally refusing to GO!). I ended up driving across town to my friend’s place (she of the cutest baby), because her fiance is a mechanic and a) he could help make sure I don’t end up paying an arm and a leg and b) I trust him.

Instead of being upset that my car is in the shop and whining about what a hassle its going to be, I’ve been looking on the brighter side. Not only did my car not die on me when I was driving on the freeway, but it also managed to make it all the way across town to my friend’s place. Plus I’m stuck missing work but since it happened yesterday afternoon, I got to call in already, emailed my sub plans and therefore, got to sleep in today. Well, somewhat… I’m not good at sleeping in lately. But at least I get to relax at home, and my allergies have been beating me down lately, so I deserve it.

And… I just got the car verdict. Good news: what IS wrong with the car is covered under warranty (I’d pretend to know what he said was wrong with it… but I have no idea. Basically, they need to replace the on board computer and I heard something about spark plugs and coils.) The bad news: my car is basically out of commission for the rest of the week. But, again.. the good news: living with my parents comes in handy, as I might be able to borrow one of their cars to get to work while I’m car-less. Yay!

See… my maintaining a positive attitude brought about good news. Okay not really, the news was going to be the same no matter what, I’m sure, but maintaining a positive attitude meant that I didn’t waste energy getting mad or frustrated about the situation for no reason. Right?

It’s like what also happened yesterday: I got home to find out that the cleaning lady unplugged the power strip, which plugs in my TV. Actually, she not only unplugged the power strip but she also managed to unplug the DVR cord from the power strip, which I didn’t discover until later in the evening, which meant House and HIMYM didn’t get recorded. But instead of getting upset… I decided to be glad that we do have a cleaning lady, who irons my shirts, and changes the sheets and all the other things I hate doing. Plus I can always watch my shows online.. maybe even today, since I can’t get to work.

Perspective, right? Or maybe it’s just the power of positive thinking. Either way, I need to keep working it… it seems to be working out for me. 🙂

Back to… black?? and being lame.

So over the weekend I went from this:

old hair(Actually, I think it was a bit lighter and more orangey in real life, red hair is hard to photograph.)

To this:

newhairHoly crap, my hair is black!

That was NOT what I was going for. My hair is naturally brown… not really dark brown, maybe mousey brown. Either way, last summer I started dyeing it red, I may have been majorly influenced by a certain redhead on Mad Men. Who has much more money than me and can afford the monthly trips to the hair salon. I enjoyed being a redhead for a while, but eventually the monthly costs, plus having it fade into an orange hue started getting on my nerves and for the last few months I thought I’d want to go back to brown. Anyway, I finally had enough and decided to go back to brown. Unfortunately for me, it ended up being black.

I know, the color will probably fade but still.. my hair looks black! I’m pretty sure I’m too pasty white to rock this look. I think this just goes to show me that I need to stick with my natural hair color. Dyeing is just not for me.

Meanwhile, Saturday night I went to a party and spent the evening curled up with this handsome man:

tongue Much cuter than any guy I’ve met lately. Plus he actually WANTS to spend time with me.

My friend brought her adorable baby and I basically played nanny and helped take care of him, which I totally loved. At one point I got called lame for not drinking… or, more likely, not being drunk like most everyone else there, but I’ve never been a big drinker. I enjoy drinking socially, maybe a glass or two, but I don’t drink to get drunk. And if being lame means getting to bottle-feed that handsome little man and snuggle with him after, then that’s totally fine by me. Hopefully I’ll get to be lame next weekend too. 🙂

Happy birthday Bay…

My cat, Bay, turns 7 years old this month. I don’t know her exact age.. when I got her she was about 18 weeks old (although originally when I got her I was told she was only 8 weeks old and a BOY, wow was I misled) so her birthday is somewhere around here.

Growing up, I was always a cat person… without a cat. My mother claimed to be allergic, my dad considered them “useless”… I wasn’t able to finally get one until graduating from college and moving into my own apartment. Which didn’t allow kittens. But from the moment I saw this little one, I couldn’t resist and took her home. She is the kind of cat that I have always wanted, cuddly but not clingy.. sweet but sometimes shy. Oh and now that we live with my parents, she has them wrapped around her paw. Seriously, my dad says hi to the cat when he gets home from work before he says hi to my mom.

As I type this, she just attacked and killed a bug that found it’s way inside the house. Such a good girl. 🙂

Anyway, I’m feeling a little sentimental so I hope you’ll excuse my little “love letter” to my cat…

Dear Bay,

IMG_0435When I got you, your ears were too large for your body (very much like the Skippyjon Jones books my students love)…

But I always thought you were beautiful.

IMG_0674You put up with me torturing you…

Picture 043But you still have a feisty side.

IMG_3350I never expected a cat could be so sweet and loving.

032210And now you have grown into a beautiful “lady”. 

Happy birthday boo. Here’s to many, many more birthdays together.

A night of speed dating…

So they say (whoever they are anyway) that you should do something that scares you every day. I don’t know about doing something every day, but within the last week I have now done 2 things that scared me: #1 being the 5k and #2 being… speed dating.

For those of you who don’t know, speed dating is like a series of first dates, one right after the other. In my case there were 13 women and 13 men, and you got 6 minutes per date. After 6 minutes (or so, I swear sometimes they would make it go longer) the coordinators would come around and tell the guy to move to the next girl (the girls never moved.. and there was no bell like I think there should’ve been at times).  As the night goes on you kind of take notes on each guy, and then within the next few days you get to pick some guys that you’re interested in getting to know (aka, want to be “matched” to). If someone picks you too, then email addresses will be handed out and the rest is up to you.

I’ll admit… last night I sat in the car for about 15 minutes, debating on if I wanted to go in and go through with this. I was tired, I just wanted to go home, and I was convinced that every guy in there would not be worth my time. But I dragged myself in, preparing for the worst. And you know… I was actually surprised.

To be honest though, I can’t tell you how it went because… I don’t know. I won’t know for another few days who decided to pick me back. And that’s the disheartening part, isn’t it.. no matter how much I liked a guy or how well I thought I got along with someone, if they don’t pick me… I may never see them again. So we’ll have to wait and see what happens. I didn’t get to stake out my female competition (I wound up in a room kind of away from everyone else) so I don’t know how it’s going to work out. I will say that there was 1 guy that I was very interested in, and 1 guy I was pretty interested in.. a few maybes… and quite a lot of no’s.

I think the worst part was being stuck on a “date” with someone I knew I wasn’t interested in. And there were a few of those. And I’m not even taking about appearance, it was the whole package: appearance, personality.. everything put together was just miserable and those 6 minutes realllly dragged on. There was one guy from a foreign country that I could barely understand (but was apparently waiting to meet me all night), one guy that seemed really full of himself (but it turns out he was just high), one guy that was pretty much a professional speed dater (and didn’t seem to be having much luck with it) and one guy that made me feel like I was being interviewed, as all he did was ask question after question.

One of the coordinators came over to me about halfway through and said I looked tense. That’s probably not good.

It wasn’t all bad though. One guy and I spent part of our time talking about books, after realizing that he was reading a book that I had recently finished.  Super cute guy and I spent time talking about my alma mater, since he had connections there. It was kind of fun to learn about people and pick up on common interests: I got to talk with people about running, traveling, and so on.

And.. it also seems like I made some friends. While I was waiting for the night to begin at the bar (which was the mingling portion, before the speed dates began), I started talking to some girls that were near me, in an attempt to get a creepy guy to quit talking to me. After the event was over, they and a few of the guys (that I had considered cool, although not necessarily a match) were hanging around and we spent a good hour just laughing about the night.

So all in all it was pretty good. If I don’t get any matches, I might cry and since I won’t know anything for a few days I will hold off on giving a definitive judgement on speed dating. But I will say it was an interesting experience and I’m kind of glad I went. Would I do it again? I’m not sure… it did give me the opportunity to meet people who I wouldn’t have otherwise met (which seems to be my problem, I don’t go out and meet people), but at times it felt a bit stressful and it got tiring answering the same questions and being stuck in dead-end conversations with people I wasn’t interested in. So the answer is.. I don’t know. I wouldn’t say never again, but maybe it would help if I had someone to go with. Or if I get some form of match out of this one.

Now cross your fingers that super cute guy picks me too.

Wordless Wednesday: belated Earth Day edition

Took these on Earth Day, finally getting a chance to post them. 🙂

flowers1

flowers2

flowers3

What’s next?

So, after successfully completing my first 5k, you may be wondering… what next? Quite a few things actually.

Step number 1: Start Bridge to 10K. I meant to start yesterday but it was crazy windy and I just wasn’t in the mood to do battle, plus I was still acting like I deserve a rest day after my victory on Sunday. I plan on starting it today, even if the wind is crazy.

b210k

I don’t know when I’ll be ready to do a 10K.. the program is only 6 weeks but I don’t think I would want to do a 10K in the middle of summer. I might… die, it being Texas and all. Maybe I can aim to run a 10K by October. In the meantime I am definitely up for…

Step number 2: Sign up for another 5k. Of course. Before even running my first one, my friend and I were talking about running a second. I kept having to say “whoa, let me see if I can even finish one before I start planning for another.” Now that I’ve completed one, I don’t have that excuse anymore. I just need to decide which one I want to do. I have 3 choices so far:

  • Astros Race for the Pennant, May 30, 2011: This race begins at and ends in Minute Maid Park, and my brother has already said that if I sign up for it, he’ll do it too since he’ll be in town. My friend really wants to race it also. However. I have read online that the course is rather hilly and it’s not a very interesting course – not very scenic. So I’m not sure if I want to do this one.
  • Houston Heights Fun Run, June 4, 2011: I keep seeing this billed as a very fun, scenic race (although also very fast) amongst trees, which = shade. Which is very important since this is Texas and it’s rather hot here. This is the run I think I really want to do.
  • Women’s Texas Lavender 5K and 10K, June 4, 2011. I found this today and I think I may have been sold by two things: “water stops manned by handsome male servants” and that after the race, there is “breakfast with champagne or mimosas, great music, free massages…” Doesn’t that sound pretty much awesome? Only thing is this one is about a 3 and a half hour drive, we’d have to pay for a hotel plus gas ain’t cheap… it’ll end up being rather costly.

Decisions, decisions.

Step number 3: Get back on track with eating healthy. I quit counting calories a few weeks ago and as soon as I did that, I quit eating properly. Looking at the race pictures that I didn’t publish yesterday made me realize how much more work I have to do to get in the shape I’d like. Eating 2 Kit Kat bars, plus 2 pieces of chocolate cake and ice cream, on top of everything else on Sunday is a bit overkill. I just need to learn to restrain myself from bingeing on foods while still allowing myself to indulge every once in a while. I’m hoping I don’t have to go back to counting calories to do that, it’s no fun.

So that’s what I’m working on. Man that was really boring. Sorry. Having my goals spelled out for me kinda helps to force me to actually stick to them. Hmmm. Maybe I should blog about my budget or something next, heaven knows I need help there!