Sunday, August 10, 2014

App Happy

Although I haven't been keeping up my end of the bargain over here, and really don't feel too bad about it, I figure I can at least share with you my favorite apps that I have deemed necessary for my every day life. And I'm not going to include the normal cast of characters, like Pinterest, Facebook, and Instagram.

Seahawks Mobile

As a big Hawks fan, this is something that I peruse at least once a day (more during the season). I can review the schedule, the roster, see current news and updates, stats. And if, God forbid, I'm not near a TV during a game, it is FAIRLY current (within a couple minutes) of what the current score is, passing/rushing yards, possession times, etc for the current game.
The only problem? The opening screen is still a shot of the departed Golden Tate... it rips at my heart a little bit every time I open it and see him wearing that 81 jersey...

Checkout 51
This is a new one to me (and maybe to the world... I dunno). But basically you download the app, set up an account, and then when you buy certain things on the list, you upload a picture of your receipt to the app, and it credits you however much money for the products you bought. 
For instance, some of this week's products are People Magazine ($1.00 back), onions ($.25), vlassic pickets ($.25), Scrubbing Bubbles bathroom or toilet cleaners ($1.00), and hot dog buns ($.25). So basically you can get cash back for things that you already shop for... sure, it's not a lot, but I've become one of those frugal people who gets excited about $.25 or $.50 back... I'm up to $6.60 so far!

Disney Wait Times

Yes, it's exactly what it sounds like... it tells you what the wait time is at different rides and attractions. It's not something that you use everyday, but it was AWESOME when I was in Disneyland a couple years ago, and every once in a while I like to check how long the wait is on things, just to feel close to the magic :) They have one for DisneyLAND and one for DisneyWORLD, and they have different wait times for the different parks (so Magic Kingdom, California Adventure, Epcot, etc).

Any good apps I should be downloading??

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Thursday, June 19, 2014

2.5 Months Later...

I may start blogging again.
If you're lucky.

Over the past couple months, I haven't really been doing much that's super exciting.

Some fishing.
 ^ 14oz black crappie (pronounce craw-pee... not crap-ee like you would hope)

^ Personal best large mouth bass, 4lb 4oz

^ Small mouth bass, 1lb 14oz

Working in my yard.

Trying to do some wedding planning... picked up my dress, got my invitations all addressed and ready to put in the mail, narrowing down some wedding party gifts.

Working out a bit (but not as much as I should be). Trying to shave off some more pounds before meeting for alterations on my dress. One more reason I should blog more again... weight loss wednesdays were keeping me accountable for a while there.

Taking it back for a Throwback Thursday concert to see these guys (and Avril Lavigne):
Don't judge, it was actually a GREAT concert... I was surprised myself.

In general. I've just been living life... going to work, doing chores, snuggling my dog... the usual.

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Thursday, April 10, 2014

I'm New Here

For some reason, these past few months have felt like I'm living someone else's life. I mean, not LITERALLY like I hijacked someone else's life, but it just feels like I am pretending to live like someone else. (Which I suppose is like I hijacked someone's life...)

All of a sudden my friends want me to do things with them (I prefer my friendships to require very little actual social commitment), and I'm working 6 days a week a couple times a month (a big change from when I would absolutely refuse a 6 day work week that would interfere with my demanding napping schedule)

But I really can't complain. I got to spend a smidge of quality time with my fave Belarussian
I am actually really upset because we didn't get a full body shot that may have included my pink boots... damn.

I've been prioritizing my hour and a half workouts about 5 days a week. And today I traded that workout in for 3 hours of yard work... (which was mostly because Dustin said he would come over and help as an attempt to get Chad to focus on something other than fishing. We were mildly successful)

There have been a LOT of throwback pictures popping up on my facebook page.
That most definitely is me on the left. I was very pale. (especially standing next to my 1/2 Filipino, 1/2 Romanian best friend)

This is what I would call "accidental orange" hair. This is what happens when you bleach brown hair. Good thing we had a second box of bleach... (side note, I have no good explanation for my one strangely short eyebrow. I have no recollection of ever having shaved it... although now that I look at the first picture in this post, apparently that is just how my left eyebrow has always been? You'd think I would have noticed that prior to right now, since I look at myself in the mirror every day. More than once.)

I read The Almost Moon by Alice Sebold. It was NOT what I was expecting. It was rather bizarre and a little frightening, honestly, but I still found myself getting sucked in.
And now I'm reading The Mistresses Revenge. Talk about a psycho.

This weekend I get to watch my bridesmaids try on potential dresses. I hope it's as fun for me as I imagined it was for them to watch me try on wedding dresses. I mean, who could forget this face?
I must also appreciate the close up of my fat arm there. Doesn't get much better.

I am leaving on Sunday morning to go to San Diego for work until Friday. Travel makes me nervous. I don't like to be away from home. Being out of my comfort zone and all. So I'm just trying to think of it as a week long vacation on my own... I can workout in the hotel gym for as long as I want in the afternoon/evening, and watch whatever I want on TV. Chad has been asking me what time I've leaving on Sunday, and it crosses my mind that he probably wants to do something nice for me that morning, since I'll be gone for a week and it also happens to be our 9 year anniversary. Nope... he just wants to find out what time he will be free to go fishing with Dustin (Such a romantic, I know. But in his defense, he DID say tonight that he would take me out for breakfast that morning, which is actually a really nice gesture for Chad).

So anyways, this is my new life I've been living, try not to be too envious.

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Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Just Go With It

I swear, this past week has been one of the most overwhelming weeks that I can remember in recent history. And not necessarily because there has been anything very exciting going on, just because there is a LOT going on.

Here is a little bit of what Ive been up to lately.

Working 6 days a week (gotta make that money, honey!)

Liking this Pin maybe a little too much (disclaimer, I didn't pin it for it's political message, I pinned it for it's Harry Potter humor)

Attempting to be more social (apparently that's important for people my age)

Going down to Taco Tuesday
I failed to take a picture before I ate the first two... whoops.

Playing garden (we had two nice days and I tore up my front flower bed... and then didn't know what to do after that so I took a nap)

Missing 4 days of workouts because I was too freaking busy and exhausted to get them in.

Anyways, I just wanted to pop in and share some of that information with you. Now I gotta go watch more American Idol... I'm really holding out hope that they will surprise me in a good way rather than boring me with their karaoke-esque singing skills.

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Friday, March 21, 2014

The Sixes

The book I have to tell you about this week is The Sixes by Kate White.

Right after Phoebe Hall's long-term boyfriend breaks off their relationship, she's falsely accused of plagiarizing her latest bestselling celebrity biography. Looking for a quiet place to put her life back together, she jumps at the offer to teach in a small private college in Pennsylvania run by her former boarding school roommate. But something evil lurks behind the quiet campus cafes and leafy maple trees. When the body of a female student washes up on the banks of a nearby river, disturbing accusations begin to surface about abuses wrought by a secret campus society known as The Sixes. Haunted by memories of her own school days, Phoebe launches a private investigation, and soon finds herself in the middle of a real-life nightmare, not knowing whom she can trust and if she will even survive. Because with the truth comes a terrifying revelation: your darkest secrets can still be uncovered... and starting over may be a crime punishable by death.

This was a Barnes and Noble bargain book, and I was really scared it was going to be as bad as the last one I got (see this post). But I am happy to report that it was WAY better. It grabbed my attention pretty much from the get go. There was a lot of characters coming in and out which can be overwhelming sometimes, but in this case it was all about keeping the reader guessing. Every time a new name came up, I was find myself trying to think through scenarios about how they fit in and what it might mean. Overall, the book took a few twists and turns and it seemed like around every corner, there was another surprise.

It wasn't the most intense book I've ever read, but the fact that it had good suspense while also being an easy read made it really good for a reader who doesn't always have long periods of time to read (since sometimes you have to be able to devote a good hour or two to make any progress in a book).

Overall, I give it 4 out of 5 stars. I think I will do some looking to see what other books this author might have out there for me.

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Thursday, March 20, 2014

Recipe Roundup

I have a few more Pinterest recipe discoveries to share with you this week.

Cheeseburger Cauliflower

Chad and I used to eat a lot of hamburger helper when he lived in the Preston House (for those of you not in the know, that was the house he lived in with a menagerie of friends over the course of 4 years). Since we bought our house and it is just the two of us eating meals together (as opposed to anywhere from 3 - 12 people milling around trying to find something to eat) I haven't been making it very much. Not only is there very little nutrition to it, it makes a TON of food. So when I saw this recipe, I thought it was a bit reminiscent of the good ole HH days.
The verdict? Very VERY bland. I was going to cut up some onion to cook with the beef and add a bit more flavor, but I didn't have one. I cooked the beef with garlic and onion powders, but it still didn't give it much taste. The recipe calls for 1 cup of cheese,but I probably put 2.5 cups in, and Chad still went and got a Kraft single to melt on top.
Overall, it was a nice idea, but not one I might recommend (however Chad just yelled at me for using the last of our ground beef to make this recipe, and I politely yelled back that if he wants tacos so damn bad, maybe he should just add some taco seasoning to it and make some effing tacos with it... and it dawned on me that it might not be a bad way to use the leftovers...)

Cheesy Honey Mustard Chicken

This recipe came from Plain Chicken. When I saw it on Pinterest, it seemed right up my alley. Here's the masterpiece featured on the original recipe:
Looks delish, no?

Here's how my version turned out.
I served mine up with a side of green beans sauteed with bacon and Uncle Ben's long grain and wild Ready-Rice. Not too shabby, my friends, not too shabby at all.

I ended up mixing up the sauce when I got home from work and putting it in the dish with the chicken to marinate while I worked out (the recipe didn't say to let it sit in the marinade, but whatever). Then when I got out of the shower after my workout, I popped it in the oven.
The chicken ended up being really moist and flavorful. I spooned some of the sauce in the dish back over the chicken after I put it on my plate, and it kind of puddled up with the beans and the rice and it made me a very happy girl.

This is definitely one that I will be making again.

Teriyaki Salmon with Sriracha Cream Sauce

This recipe was brought to you by Damn Delicious, and if that's not a blog name that makes you want to read, I don't know what is. Follow it up with a picture of this dish, and you're a damn fool if you don't want to eat it.

I changed this recipe up just a TEENY bit. For one thing, I didn't plan far enough in advance to let my salmon marinate in the sauce for "at least 30 minutes to overnight". I really didn't even have enough time to let the sauce cool to room temperature without the assistance of my refrigerator. 

The other difference between my meal and Chung-Ah's (she is the creator of Damn Delicious... keep up people!) comes with the Sriracha cream sauce. I basically just mixed a bunch of sriracha with sour cream, as opposed to the mayo and sweetened condensed milk (primarily because I wasn't going to go buy a can of sweetened condensed milk to use 1.5 TBSP and throw the rest away)
And this is the culinary masterpiece that I served up...
Yeah, I see it... obviously I need some SERIOUS help with my presentation and photography skills.

As hideous as my picture is, the taste was good. Again with my go to Uncle Bens Ready Rice as the base. The teriyaki sauce wasn't as sweet as a lot of the store bought stuff, which was nice. And the Sriracha sauce was great. I give this two thumbs up.

That's it for now. But, as long as I keep eating (which I inevitably do), I will keep coming back to tell you what you should and shouldn't bother to ingest.

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Tuesday, March 18, 2014

On Being Content

Rather than do a weight loss Wednesday post tomorrow, I decided that I want to talk more about a mental weight. The feelings of depression and frustration that make everything else in life so much harder to get through.

I finished my workout tonight, fed Buck, took my shower, and walked to the front of the house, going over a mental list in my mind about how much stuff I need to get done, and where I should start, and I immediately started to feel that mental frustration coming on. You know the one I am talking about, that feeling of being completely overwhelmed. Where everywhere you look, something is wrong. 

But, for whatever reason, I decided to just walk right through the house and out the front door with Buck. 
No, I didn't lose my mind and just start wandering off into the woods. You're not going to see my face on the news as either a) a girl who just disappeared without a clue as to where I went, or b) the person who winds up sitting at a bus stop not knowing how I got there. Nope. I just went outside and looked around. Smelled the spring air and looked at the fish in my pond (that have somehow miraculously survived in the year and a half since my mom moved out). And in that moment, I felt content. I felt like I could stand there for hours (more likely AN hour... it still gets pretty damn cold at night) and be okay with the fact that the dishes were still in the sink and the recycling is overflowing.

So, while I know that nothing in life is ever going to be perfect, I am discovering that it's okay. It's okay that I'll never be completely done with house work, or that my checking account won't ever have a balance high enough to fund my dream closet. 

It's okay.

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Monday, March 17, 2014

If I'm Being Honest...

If I'm being honest, I think that non clumping cat litter is STUPID.

If I'm being honest, I frequently avoid going out with friends when they are wanting to go more than 15 minutes away (social situations = drinking more to get comfortable. drinking more to get comfortable = lack of driving abilities.lack of driving abilities = much more difficult to find a way home)

If I'm being honest, as many big wedding plans as I have always had in my head, I am realizing more and more that the little details aren't going to matter so much, I just wanna have a good time! (I say that now... ask me in 5 months when it's really crunch time)

If I'm being honest, people who would rather call my work 8 times in a row rather than leave a message make me feel violent. It also makes me less likely to answer their calls. I'm more than happy to ignore you until you start behaving like a real life grown up rather than a child who seems to think that my entire day is made up of waiting on your every beck and call. Leave a message like every other person and I will get to you when it's your turn.

If I'm being honest, I think some people are codependent on drama.

If I'm being honest, I can't wait for summer to show up. Long days, warm nights, barbecues with friends. I'm ready.

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Saturday, March 15, 2014

Awkward Trends.

I don't really know if that title even really fits for what I am about to write about, but I couldn't think of anything better, so just go with it, mmkay?

There are some things that I see people posting about on Facebook, or pinning about that i can't help but go "really?! That's what you think is the most beautiful thing you've ever seen? THAT'S the picture you want hanging on your wall for all to see????"

These are a couple of the things that have gotten under my skin lately that I really find it hard to believe I am the only person who DOESN'T want to see it...

This Video has been floating around on FB for the past week or so, with all sorts of comments about "this made me cry it was so beautiful" and "I dare you not to smile while you watch this!"
Really? Strangers kissing each other. On camera. That's the most beautiful thing you've ever seen? I couldn't watch it for more than 30 seconds before I just felt weird and uncomfortable and had to stop it. 
Am I alone here?

The other thing that makes me cringe sometimes is pregnancy pictures.
Now, don't get me wrong, I agree that pregnancy is a beautiful process and experience for women or whatever (it's not for me at this point, but it's great for other people), but something about these bare belly maternity pictures just makes me unhappy.
Yes, I know, it's an intimate experience to be pregnant, and even though the baby is still en-utero, it's like your first real family pictures, etc. But I think you can take those pictures with your shirt on
I'm sure I'm not going to make any friends with this particular emotion, but hopefully people will understand that it's just one of those personal preferences. I guess I'm just modest like that... I think that it's just plain uncomfortable sometimes to look at someone's round, firm, veiny pregnancy belly.

Ya know?

Anyways, that's that. I've been waiting a while to get it of my chest.
Carry on.

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Friday, March 14, 2014

Smash Cut and Skinny

I know it's been a while since I talked about anything aside from weight loss or food (weird...?)

But believe it or not, I have been doing a bit of reading, so I thought I might link up for Book Club Friday.

Smash Cut by Sandra Brown

When millionaire Paul Wheeler is murdered, his family retains renowned lawyer Derek Mitchell to defend the victim's nephew Creighton - although the police have not charged the young man with the crime. Wheeler's mistress, Julie Rutledge, who is also a suspect, believes that Creighton is the killer, despite his rock solid alibi, and she'll do almost anything in her quest to prove his guilt - even ruin Derek's career. But the more Derek learns of Creighton's darker side, especially his bizarre fascination with movie murders, the more he comes to believe Julie is right. The clock ticks down to a shocking ending as Derek and Julie join forces to find the truth. Has Creighton begun reenacting cinema's goriest scenes? And who will be his unwilling costars?

When I first started reading this book, it really drew me in. I love a good mystery/suspense/murder book, so this seemed right up my alley. But I quickly realized that this wasn't going to have the twists and turns I had hoped for. It didn't take long to figure out who the murderer was, and the author's attempts to throw the reader off onto a different tangent failed. It also, as the synopsis implies, has a lot of references to movies, and I think that the book may have had a bit more attraction if I was familiar with all the movies that were referenced.

Overall, it was just okay. I give it 3 out of 5.

Skinny by Diana Spechler

After her father's death, twenty six year old Gray Lachmann finds herself compulsively eating. Desperate to stop bingeing, she abandons her life in New York City for a job at a southern weight-loss camp. There, caught among the warring egos of her devious co-counselor, Sheena; the self-aggrandizing camp director, Lewis; his attractive assistant, Bennett; and a throng of combative teenage campers, she is confronted by a captivating mystery: her teenage half-sister Eden, whom Gray never knew existed. Now, while unraveling her father's lies, Gray must tackle her own self-deceptions and take control of her body and her life.

I thought this book would be PERFECT for me. But it was really not. I mean. REALLY not. I understand what the author was trying to do, show the reader that there is a connection between our minds wanting answers and our bodies supplementing with overeating, etc. But what she ended up with was a weird novel with a lot of confusing, contradictory things happening. She is so depressed about her fathers death but she talks about him like she hates him. She is SOOOO unhappy with her relationship, yet she continuously talks about how this guy was so great to her. There's an awkward, high school-esque drama with the other counselor, and a random steamy romance. 

Overall, this book really lacked anything to make me recommend it to someone else. I think that the author was onto a really good topic, but it came out more as a lot of unfinished characters and storylines, and too many loose ends.

I give it maybe 1.5 out of 5 stars.
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