Posts tagged me time

Let’s Face It…

…post activity on this here blog has been sluggish, to say the least, these past few months.  Am I sorry?  No, not really.  This blog is my creative outlet and I don’t have any schedule, per se, for posting on it.  That’s the best part about it.

Remember when you were in high school or college and you were given a writing assignment with a particular due date?  Wasn’t that the worst!?  Even if you loved writing or it just came easy to you, having someone give you a topic to write on and then tell you when it was due was just plain hell.  At least it was for me.  I’m most creative and wordy when it’s not forced.  Do I enjoy writing?  Yes.  Does it come easy to me?  Most of the time.  Except when I try to force myself to sit down and blog.

As many of you readers know, since most of you are busy moms too, carving out time in the day for yourself is just plain hard.  Ever try to do something you wanted to do spur of the moment with two kids hanging off your legs?  Yeah, impossible.  So when I’m going through my daily grind and an idea strikes me that I think would make a good blog post, I can’t just stop what I’m doing and run over to my computer.  I’ve got sticky hands to clean, dishes to wash and laundry to fold.  So I take those ideas and file them into my brain {or jot them down on a sheet of paper so I don’t forget} and hope that when I have time, the ideas will flow.  But that’s simply not always the case.  I find myself sitting at my computer quite often with a post window open and a page full of blog ideas by my side and noting will come to me.  I’m trying to force myself to type something out and it just doesn’t work.

Am I giving up on this blog?  No way!  I love writing and sharing stories.  I love the people I’ve met through blogging and I love the creative outlet.  So when I have time, and the mood is right, and the creative juices are flowing you can bet that I’ll be blogging.  But I’m not going to force myself to stick to a schedule because then this will all just turn into a chore and who likes doing chores?  Not me! :-)

If you’re still following my blog, thanks for sticking with me.  I truly appreciate your readership and hope to have many more great posts to share with you.

Lifestyle Adjustment

Today is Monday.  Three weeks ago today I made a lifestyle adjustment.  Not necessarily a New Years Resolution, but more of a change in the way I live.  I started to really look at the way I was doing things around the house, the way I was eating, and the way I was {not} exercising.  I knew I had to make a change and I figured, what better time than the start of a new year to turn over a new leaf.

So, three weeks ago I started going to the gym again.  I started eating better and being more aware of what I put in my mouth.  I started being more purposeful, if you will, around the house – making the bed, bringing the laundry down, tidying rooms up when not in use.  I’m planning meals for the week and trying to avoid letting folded clothes sit in laundry baskets for more than a day.  It might not sound like much, but it’s making a difference in our lives.

In the past three weeks, I’ve lost 8 pounds.  This is a big deal for me.  It’s not that I consider myself overweight or anything.  It’s just that I know that I can look better and feel better.  Not for anyone else, but for myself.  I want my children to see me as an active and fit parent.  Now, three nights each week, I go to the gym and they know that mommy is going to exercise.  On the weekends I use our treadmill at home. After dinner I get ready to leave, my husband cleans up the dishes and then gets the girls ready for bed.  Not only is this a chance for me to work out, but it’s a chance for me to have alone time.  It might sound crazy that I actually enjoy going to the gym, but I do.  It’s the only time that I get to drive in my car completely alone listening to whatever music I choose as loudly as I want.  And when I get there I don’t have to unbuckle car seats or lug anyone or anything in with me.  It’s amazing.  And while I’m there working out, I can read my Kindle or watch TV or stream Netflix on my iPhone.  It’s really quite relaxing.

When I get home, the kitchen is {usually} cleaned up, the girls are in bed, and my husband is waiting for me.  He’s very proud of what I’m doing and that makes it even more rewarding for me.

I don’t believe in dieting.  I’m not saying that it doesn’t work for some people, but for me, it has to be a lifestyle change.  I just have to eat less and move more.  And that is what I’m doing.  The scale doesn’t lie.  Eight pounds of me are gone and I hope they never come back!

Oh, what a night!

This weekend Scott and I celebrated our FIVE YEAR wedding anniversary.  Which, if you remember correctly, was July 3rd.  Since 4th of July weekend is always a busy, busy time, we decided to postpone our festivities a week.  If you live in the Northeast region of the US, you are probably aware that we were in a heat wave/dry spell for over a week.  The sun shone down each and every day and it was hot and humid outside.  Well, wouldn’t you figure that the day we picked to head into the city to celebrate five glorious years of wedded bliss would be the day that the dry spell ended.  I’m not talking a little bit of rain here either, people.  I’m talking about torrential down pours and flash floods.

We had to avoid this on our way in to the city:

And by avoid I mean we had to jump a curb, drive over some grass, and pretty much drive the wrong way down a one way street to get to a flood free road.  (For any of you locals reading, this is Storrow Drive and we had to cut over to Beacon St.)  It might not sound like the safest idea but everyone was doing it so we followed suit.  Thank God we did otherwise we would have been sitting in that traffic backup for nearly 3 hours.

Once we found our way to the hotel the sun looked like it was peeking through the clouds.  I was relieved because we had planned to have dinner in the North End and then walk around a bit.  We pulled up and handed the keys over to the valet, to which Scott joked, “Have fun!” and I nearly puked at the $42/night parking rate.  Upon checking in to the hotel, Scott mentioned to the front desk girl that we were in celebrating our 5 year anniversary (this will be important later).  We got our room key and headed toward the elevator to our king sized bed, Fenway view room on the 5th floor.  Heaven!

After dropping our stuff in the room, we made a reservation for dinner, which wasn’t until 8:30pm and then headed out to take in the city and stop for a snack to hold us over until dinner.  We were gone an hour tops.  When we returned to our room we saw this:

That’s right kids, the receptionist sent a bottle of champagne and chocolates up to our room for us! How’s that for service!  It took the sting off the valet parking charge.

After downing the bottle of champagne and pretty-ing ourselves up, we hopped on the T and headed to the North End.  By this point, the rain had totally stopped and it turned into a pretty nice evening.  We walked through Faneuil Hall and down Hanover Street before making our way in to Strega for our 8:30 reservation.  As we watched Italian Mafia movies we dined on stuffed portabella caps, lobster ravioli and shrimp and scallop fettuccine.  We were beyond full.  However we couldn’t call it a night without stopping into Caffe Vittoria for a sweet treat – iced B-52s and chocolate mousse cake!

We then headed back to the T and made it safely back to our hotel where we hit up the bar for one last drink before calling it a night.  After a fantastic nights sleep ::wink, wink:: we rolled out of the king sized bed at 11am!!  We packed up our things, checked out of the hotel, and requested our car from the valet.  But in true Bostonian fashion, we didn’t leave without grabbing breakfast first.  Where else but Dunkin’ Donuts!

Where were the girls you might ask?  They were home with Mimi who took fabulous care of them while we went out and pretended they didn’t exist.  They were beyond spoiled and loved.  And when we got home, Brinley was not happy.  She kept asking for us to leave.  I’m wondering if the bag of chocolate munchkins left on the counter had anything to do with that?!

The Odd Couple

Last night I went grocery shopping.  Alone.  It’s amazing what is considered enjoyable alone time when you’re a mom.  I was only gone about an hour, but it was an hour free of whining, begging, and melt downs.  I could completely focus on the task at hand – filling my cart with food!  There was no one asking for candy or cookies or needing to go to the bathroom half way through the store.  I didn’t have to pay attention to anyone else.  Yet, for some reason, I found myself thinking about the people around me.  It’s amazing what you notice when you don’t have two nagging kids in your presence.

It started as I was getting out of the car.  A woman was exiting the store.  I’d guess she was in her late 20′s or early 30′s.  She was tall, wearing a pencil skirt, a blouse and cardigan, peep toe heels and shiny jewelry.  She had her long blonde hair perfectly straightened and just enough make-up on to be noticed.  She walked toward the parking lot carrying a cardboard box.  Walking toward her was a man who was probably around 40 or so.  He had on stonewashed Levi’s, a light yellow polo shirt and sneakers.

The woman noticed the man and said to him, “Oh, hi!  I was just going to bring this out to my car.”  He said to her, “Let me get it for you.”  And he took the box from her.  They walked together, pretty closely, to a mid sized sedan and he put the box in the trunk.  Then they turned and walked into the store grocery store together.

For the remainder of my time in the grocery store I kept trying to think of what their relationship could be.  They didn’t seem close enough to be married.  And she seemed a little young for him (in my opinion).  They seemed very mismatched to be a “couple”.  She was well dressed, tall and looked important.  He was dressed very casually and was much shorter than her with salt and pepper hair.  He definitely wasn’t old enough to be her dad.  Maybe he was her brother or a coworker?  But they’re initial encounter seemed on the awkward side, almost like on a first date.  Maybe it was a DHG (disproportionately hot girlfriend) situation.  ( If you are unaware of the DHG situation, please click here.)  But who would go on a date to the grocery store?  I still can’t figure it out.  I have no idea why I even care about this, but it’s just one of those things.  What’s your guess?  Have you ever encountered a “couple” like this?

So many shows, so little time.

There are so many shows on TV that I feel like everyone watches.  Everyone except me, that is.  I like TV and I do watch it.  It just seems like the shows that appeal to me are not the ones that appeal to the masses and vice versa.

Here is a list of popular shows that I never watched.  Most of which I have never even seen one episode of:

Grey’s Anatomy – I’m pretty sure I’d love this show but I never saw it in the first season.  I thought it would be hard to “learn” the characters and plot lines jumping in later.  Maybe I’ll watch it on DVD.

Lost – I haven’t had any interest in Matthew Fox since Party of Five.  This show just doesn’t appeal to me AT ALL.

Sex and the City - Again, just not up my alley.  I know, I know, how could it be possible?  But seriously, I haven’t seen one single episode of this show and I just have no desire at all to watch it.

24 - This is another show that I’d probably like but I think I never started watching it because it conflicted with something else that I really loved.  Probably either Prison Break or American Idol.  Seems really cool, but probably too late to get into it now.  Maybe another DVD show I’ll watch when I get some free time, ha!

Heroes - I’ve never been one for super heroes, super powers, XMen type movies or shows.  Blah.

How I Met Your Mother - I’ve loved Neil Patrick Harris since waaaaaaaaaaay back in his Doogie Howser, MD days.  This show seems hilarious but, again, it must have conflicted with something else that I watch(ed).

Survivor - Not much to say about this one.  Just not interested.

Desperate Housewives - Seems like it’s sort of complicated to follow, just by hearing the commercials for it.  I prefer mindless TV.  I only have room in my brain for one complicated show at a time and I was obsessed with Prison Break.

Gossip Girl - I could be wrong but I thought this was a teeny bopper-ish type of show.  So I never got into it.  Don’t really care to anyway.

Glee – This show looks hilarious.  I wish I had gotten into it.  Too late?

I’m sure there are more that others love that I’ve never seen but these are the ones that I seem to get the most flack for not watching.  Like I said, I was obsessed with Prison Break.  I’m so sad that it had to end, even though I knew it would eventually.  These days my TV watching is pretty much nil except for Ellen in the morning and occasionally Two and a Half Men on DVR (even though now with Charlie Sheen’s situation it’s bound to go into hiatus) and Red Sox baseball.

I never got to the theater to see Avatar or The Blind Side but they’re both sitting on my DVD player just waiting to be watched.  I just need a few more hours in my day.  Please?

What are some of your favorite TV shows or movies?  How do you find the time to watch them all?  We use DVR but even with that it’s hard to find time to sit down and watch them when there are so many other things that have to be done.

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