Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Nails again :)

First off, I just got a call from Shawn! He tied for first place in the weight loss contest at work! He lost 12 pounds in a month. He did awesome, I'm super proud of him! He split the prize money and got a $25 gift certificate to a clothing store. Fun! :)

Second, here are my nails again. I'm obsessed with nail polish blogs and absolutely love to look at people's painted nails. So maybe it seems weird that I keep posting pictures of my fingernails, but I figure I can't be the only one that likes looking at painted nails, so here's another picture. :)

I actually went kind of natural this time. I've done all sorts of crazy designs and colors lately and decided to go back to basics. I used an Essie color called Sugar Daddy, which is a really pale pink that you can barely see. It's my favorite color to use when I want natural looking nails. It looks better than clear polish, but it's still subtle.

Just for fun I painted the tips with an Essie polish called Shine Of The Times, which is one of my very favorite polishes. It's a super cool flakie polish. It's not glitter, it's like little shimmery flakes. In the right light it really shines and is SO pretty. The picture doesn't really do it justice. It's prettier in person.

So that's enough yakking about my nails. Here's the picture and then I promise to shut up about them for at least a few days. :)

Ten pounds!!

YAY!  I woke up this morning and stood on the scale and was shocked to see that I've lost another 1.2 pounds! I didn't expect that! That brings me up to 10.2 pounds lost! I'm super exctited about that. I still have more to lose, but it feels really good to be on the right track.

I also managed to go the full five miles on my bike today. It's really kicking my behind this week for some reason. I had to stop and catch my breath twice. I did it though, even though I really wanted to cut it short. One thing that helped was that I decided to ditch the iPod playlist for now and download an audiobook. I was getting bored of the same songs every day and thought that I might get through my workouts easier if I got engrossed in a book. 

I spent yesterday browsing audiobooks and I thought about getting something deep or devouring some heavy piece of literature or listening to a self help book or something and finally decided that I needed something light and silly, so I chose Mindy Kalings book called "Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me? (and Other Concerns)." It's definitely light and silly, lol. The audiobook is actually read by Mindy Kaling and it's basically just a bunch of funny stories from her life so it kind of feels like she's riding along beside me having a conversation with me while I ride. I like it. That should keep me entertained on my bike for a while.

I checked my bike stats this morning since its the last day of the month. I rode 133 miles in July! I'm proud of me! I'm now at 189 miles total since I started riding. I really thought that I would hit 10 pounds of weight loss and 200 miles on my bike at about the same time, but I surprised myself and managed the 10 pounds a little faster. I'm really proud of my progress. Making these changes in my life was really hard for me and I'm proud of what I've accomplished. I still weigh too much and I'm still out of shape, but I'm making progress and I'm finally headed in the right direction. That feels really good.

Monday, July 30, 2012

Back on the bike

This morning I got up bright and early to decide if  my toe could handle a bike ride. I went back and forth about it. My toe still hurts and it's still hard to walk on it, but I literally can't stand the thought of missing one more day on my bike. I can't sit around the house forever. 

So I put my shoes on and walked around the house for a few minutes to see if I could do it. It hurt, but not super bad. I decided to go for it.

I tend to ride on the balls of my feet, which kind of pushes my toes down into my shoes a bit. I realized immediately that that wasn't going to work, so I kind of had to modify how I pedal a bit. It worked well enough, I suppose. My toe still hurt but it wasn't too bad.

The hardest part really was exerting myself after siting around for the past several days. I've been off my feet as much as possible for four days so getting out there and doing heavy exercise was harder than usual. My heart was working hard and my lungs were on fire. My asthma was worse this morning for some reason. It was a bit chilly out and cold air tends to trigger my asthma, so that may have been the problem. I had to stop and use my inhaler, which I haven't had to do in a while.

So between the asthma, the toe and the fact that my stamina was down this morning, I only went 3.5 miles. I'm going to have to work back up to it for a couple of days.

I came home and unwrapped my toe and it survived the ride just fine. The butterfly bandages are helping the skin grow back together. It doesn't look nearly as gruesome as it did a few days ago! I've never cut myself that bad before. It was pretty yucky.

Shawn went back to work this morning after his week off. I'm super bummed that my toe ended up derailing the second half of the week. We had a lot of plans that we had to abandon because I couldn't walk and that was disappointing. It was still nice having him home though.

This week I'm going to be busy getting Matthew ready to go back to school because I think school starts next Tuesday! I'm still confused as to why it's starting so early and I actually need to verify that it actually IS next Tuesday, but I'm pretty sure it is. I'm totally not ready, so I have some work to do this week. We've got to go school supply shopping and buy him some new clothes and shoes. His birthday is also coming up so I need to start thinking about that too. Then once I get him back to school I need to start getting Josh ready to go back at the end of the month. August is always a busy and expensive month!

Today I'm anxiously awaiting the swimming finals! Breeja Larson (Shawn's co-workers girlfriend) made it through the first two preliminary races and will be swimming in the 100m breaststroke final this afternoon. She's currently ranked 4th and has a good shot at a medal. We're rooting for her, I'm really excited to watch it! 

Sunday, July 29, 2012


I lost another 1.4 pounds this morning! I worried that missing my bike ride for a few days would derail things, but I stuck carefully to the diet and still managed to lose two pounds in the past few days. I've lost 8.8 pounds in just over a month.

I'm taking one more day to let my toe heal and then I'm really hoping to be back on my bike tomorrow. I looked at my toe again last night and it looks better than it did the day before so I'm pretty confident that it's going to heal OK. I'm pretty sure it needed stitches for as big and deep as it was, but butterfly bandanges have seemed to close it up OK. I was just to chicken to go to the doctor for stitches, lol. It still looks pretty nasty but I'm going to keep it wrapped for several more days and I think it will be fine. Hopefully OK enough to wear shoes again and walk around normally by tomorrow. I can't sit in the the house anymore, it's driving me crazy.

So that's all the updates I have for today. Not much happening around here. Oh, except that we're keeping an eye on Olympic swimming today and tomorrow. Shawn's co-workers girlfriend is Breeja Larson, who is swimming the breaststroke, so we're going to watch and cheer her on. Go USA! :)

Saturday, July 28, 2012


I lost .6 pounds this morning. Not impressive but better than nothing. I have officially lost 7.2 pounds in 30 days. That's not a lot, but it's better than nothing. I'll keep plugging along. Shawn has lost close to 12 pounds in the same amount of time. He's in a contest at work and their final weigh in is on Tuesday. I really hope he wins!

I stayed off my feet pretty much all day yesterday. I read, did my nails, watched a movie with Josh and tried to keep myself entertained. I'm going through serious bike withdrawl. I unwrapped my toe last night and looked at it and it looks somewhat better. It's still pretty nasty though. I'm planning to stay off of it as much as I can for the rest of the weekend and hopefully I'll be able to start my bike rides back up on Monday. I've got to do something to kick this weight loss back into gear. It started out good for the first few weeks and now it's become slow and frustrating.

So that's pretty much all the news I have to report. Not much happening when I'm sitting around waiting for my toe to heal. Life will feel better when I can get back on my bike!

Friday, July 27, 2012


More nails

I've had a lot of time on my hands this morning. Of course I used it to paint my nails. I've never painted my nails black before. I used an Essie color called Licorice. It's kind of hard, actually, because it's such a dark color that every tiny mistake shows. I had to practice. I haven't been painting my nails for very long, so I'm still learning.

Harder than painting my nails black is taking a photo of my hand! I thought my right hand turned out slightly better than my left hand, so I wanted to take a picture of that one, but trying to balance my big camera with one hand, on the opposite side of the buttons so I wasn't able to make adjustments was super tricky. I wouldn't have bothered except that I'm literally that bored, lol. So the picture is kind of crappy, but you'd be impressed if you saw the contorting I had to do to get it. :) 

Anyway, here are my nails. 


My toe is still out of commission so I'm pretty much stuck off my feet again today. Yesterday I tried to take it easy most of the day and stay off my feet and my toe did OK, and then last night my mom and stepdad stopped by to spend the night on their way through town so I was up walking around for a few hours and by bedtime the whole cut on my toe had opened back up and was bleeding again. Honestly, I'm not all that sure that it doesn't need stitches. it's really yucky.

I cleaned it up really good last night and put butterfly band aids on it to close it up and then wrapped it really well and I'm staying off of it today as much as I can. That means another day of no bike riding, I doubt I'll be able to ride for the rest of the week at least, which makes me a bit cranky.

Today is also my official weigh in day and I haven't lost any weight. Actually, I have lost weight, but I went up a pound this week for some reason and then this morning I lost the same pound I gained. I've been working really hard at the diet and exercise and it's discouraging when the scale doesn't reflect that. I feel stuck and frustrated and it's not helping that I'm stuck in the house and can't work off my frustrations on my bike ride. Sitting around all day is only going to make losing weight more difficult.

I know it will pass, I know it will be fine, I'm just a bit down today. I want to get up and move and go outside and ride my bike and being stuck in the house is making me antsy. I was looking so forward to doing a lot of fun family activities on Shawn's week off and my toe has pretty much put an end to that.

So I guess today I'll do some reading, maybe watch a movie with the kids or something and try to keep myself entertained. On the upside, if I had to be off my feet for a few days at least it happened when Shawn was home and can help out. The kids will stay entertained at least.

For now I'm off to find a book to read. Losing myself in a good book for a few hours always cheers me up!

Thursday, July 26, 2012

No bike ride today :(

Remember last week when I broke a bottle of nail polish and glass got all over the place? I cleaned everything up really well, or so I thought.

Last night I was searching for a certain color of nail polish and couldn't find it so I dumped my whole nail polish tote onto my bed to find it. I found the polish, put everything back into the tote, painted my nails and went to bed.

I was happily sleeping at 5:00 this morning when I slid my foot down to the end of the bed and felt a sharp pain in my big toe. It was still dark but I felt my foot and it was wet with blood. I hobbled into the bathroom, turned on the light and it was like a crime scene in there. I was standing in a pool of blood and had left a trail of blood through the bedroom.

I called for Shawn and got a wet washcloth to try to clean up my foot and I could see that there was a huge gash in my toe, probably about an inch and a half long. It was bleeding like crazy and I was worried I was going to have to go get stitches, which I REALLY didn't want to do. I sat there for a bit and kept pressure on it and it eventually stopped bleeding enough that we got it all cleaned up and wrapped it with gauze. I don't think it needs stitches, thank goodness.

Shawn was a trooper at 5am scrubbing blood out of the carpet. I felt bad to get him up early on his day off, but he's always good in a crisis.

So now my big toe is wrapped in gauze and I'm skipping my bike ride today. I want to give it at least one day to heal up before I put it in a shoe or anything. I don't want it to open back up.

After we got everything cleaned up I searched around the bottom of my bed to figure out what I cut myself on, and there was a little shard of glass from the nail polish bottle. It must have fallen out of my nail polish tote last night when I dumped everything out.

So that may change our year of adventure plans today. We were going to go to the aquarium this morning. I may send Shawn and the boys without me or maybe we'll go tomorrow. We do still have the movie screen to finish up and I can probably hobble around a bit and help with that.

Stupid broken fingernail polish. Oh, well, I guess being stuck at home all day gives me more time to sit around and paint my nails, lol.

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

nail polish and gardens!

I know, I know, two posts in one day. But I've been taking a lot of pictures lately that I've been meaning to share and if I don't do it I'll forget.

First of all, my fingernails. They're still growing nicely, which is amazing to me because seriously, you should have seen them before. Not pretty. I'm completely addicted to painting them and I especially like them with funky designs on them. I'm probably going to get acetone poisoning and die from all the nail polish removing and repainting but at least I'll die with pretty fingernails right? It keeps me entertained in the afternoons when Clarissa is taking her nap and I'm having mommy quiet time.

Here are two designs that I've done recently. I use stamping sets to make the designs. Google Konad if you want to know more, but don't buy Konad plates, buy cheaper off brands like Mash on Amazon. It's easy and fun and keeps me entertained. :)

Ok, second thing is my garden. I posted earlier in the spring that we planted a garden this year. I don't have a green thumb. I've planted several gardens in the past, none of which really produced much except frustration. But somehow this year I've done it! I planted a garden that actually grew! We've got peas and carrots and sunflowers and corn and pumpkin and strawberries and one little cherry tomato that may or may not make it. :) It's looking a little sad, lol.

I'm honestly shocked! Who knew I could plant a garden that actually produced vegetables?! Certainly not me! So here are photos of my garden. Josh and I ate peas straight out of the pod this morning. Yum! The green along the fence is grape vine. We get SO many grapes every year and pretty much every year I just leave them to the birds to eat. This year I'm hoping to get my act together and make grape juice.

Today our project has been working on the backyard movie theater project! We've been talking about this since last year and we are finally getting the screen built. We spent the morning mixing cement and cementing poles into tires. Those have set up and now we just have to put grommets in the vinyl screen, screw eye hooks in the poles to attach to the screen and assemble everything. I have taken photos of the process but I'll wait to share those until we're done.

While we were waiting for the cement to dry, Shawn was doing some yard work in the backyard and was cutting back a big bush when suddenly a swarm of hornets charged out of the bush! He got stung twice and ran into the house and a hornet followed him into the house and into the bathroom. He broke a light fixture in the bathroom trying to kill it! It was quite a commotion!

When he got himself cleaned up and calmed down he went back out there and there is a GIGANTIC hornets nest in the bush. It's huge! He is currently at Lowes buying spray to kill them. Yikes.

So there is all the excitement happening here today! I'm loving this week so much, I'm going to be really sad when Shawn has to go back to work next week. We've worked on projects, had fun adventures and we still have a few more days of fun left! I can't wait to see what tomorrow brings!

Bike tip!

If you're thinking of taking up cycling (I've had a few people e-mail me and tell me that I've inspired them to start!!), I have a tip for you.

I've been taking my bike ride every single day like usual and in the past week or two I've felt like I'm just getting worse at it. Especially this past week I've just felt slow and out of breath after a few minutes and trying to get the full five miles in has been torture. I've actually had to gear back down this week to the old gear that I was riding in when I started because my legs were getting so tired and I've also been struggling to maintain a decent speed.

That has been really discouraging for me because I had been getting so much better and suddenly it's gotten really hard again and has almost stopped being fun.

Then I realized yesterday when I was riding to the park with the kids that my bike seat seemed low. My knees were having to go up a lot higher than they should. I remembered a few weeks ago when I rode with my friend who is a cyclist that she mentioned that my seat was a little low and I'd been meaning to raise it but I never think of it until i'm starting my ride and then I don't want to take the time to do it. I adjusted my seat to the perfect height when I started riding last month and I didn't think it was really that far off.

Shawn has been riding with me this week so this morning I asked him if he would raise my seat up a bit before we left. I expected it to just need to be bumped up slightly, but when I stood next to it and showed him how it needed to hit me about mid hip he had to raise it WAY up! I think as I've been riding over the past two months it has inched slightly down a tiny bit at a time and I haven't noticed it until finally it was way too low. My knees have had to come up so much when I ride that it was tiring me out in the first mile. No wonder the rides have been so hard lately!

So Shawn raised my seat way up to where it's supposed to be and it was a GIGANTIC difference! It was like night and day. I went from tiring out in the first mile to flying through the park. I even hit 14mph for a short burst, which I've never done. It was still a great workout and my heart was pumping, but it was pumping because I was going fast and working efficiently, not because I was overriding my legs and burning myself out. I was able to gear back up to where I was before and I finished the five miles feeling invigorated instead of exhausted like I have been all week.

What a relief! I have been discouraged this week feeling like I was never going to improve and it was all because my bike seat was too low. Now that it's back up to where it's supposed to be I'm doing better than ever.

So if you're just starting out riding your bike, make sure your bike seat is adjusted to the correct height. It should hit you about mid hip when you're standing next to it, and when you sit down your knee should have just a slight bend in it when your foot is on the lower pedal. If you're having to work your legs really hard and your knees are going way up when you ride, your seat is probably too low and not only is that bad for your knees, you'll wear yourself out really fast.

So now that I'm sitting like I should, I'm back to loving my bike. What a relief!

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Our Year of Adventure: Go on a picnic

This year of adventure activity is a replacement for one that we had to take out. We originally had "go to Oregon" on the list when we thought we were going on vacation there. We considered taking a drive just across the border one afternoon (It's about an hour to the border) just to cross it and say we went, but that seemed kind of silly so we took a family vote and replaced with a picnic.

Going on a picnic is a pretty simple activity. It doesn't take a lot of time, planning or money. Which is why it's so silly that we don't go on picnics on  regular basis, which is exactly why it needed to go on our year of adventure list. Not every adventure needs to be elaborate. I think we needed a reminder that sometimes something really quick and simple can be exactly the pick me up that we need. It's a fun family activity that gets us out of the house for a bit and it doesn't require a lot of pre-planning.

With the new park being so close it's even easier to take a picnic now! We can ride our bikes there! I love that we're looking for any excuse to take a bike ride these days. That's a huge difference in our family and we're all loving it!

So we packed up sandwiches, fruit, chips, carrots and lemonade and headed off to the park. The bike trailer we have is big enough for two kids, so we had Clarissa on one side and enough room to pack the cooler on the other side. Perfect! Clarissa loves riding in the bike trailer. She calls it her yellow bike. :)

It was a beautiful day for a picnic, it was in the low 80's, so the 3/4 mile ride over there was nice. The new park has covered picnic areas, which is really nice.

We unpacked our food and had a fun family lunch. I love spending time with the family. This staycation week we're having has been really fun so far!

After we ate we decided to try geocaching in the park because apparently there are a few of them there, but we tried one and couldn't find it and by then it was starting to get hot and we needed to get Clarissa home for her nap so we abandoned those plans for today. Geocaching is on our year of adventure list though, so we're going to be trying it again soon, possibly later in the week.

Here are a few pictures of our picnic!

Monday, July 23, 2012


Our Year Of Adventure: Go to the zoo

We got our week off to a great start this morning! I'm loving having Shawn home! He went with me on my bike ride this morning and then we got in the car and headed out to the zoo.

I am a huge lover of zoo's, so you would think that we would go to the zoo all the time, but I've always been kind of disappointed by the Boise zoo. As far as zoo's go, it's not super impressive. They've done a lot of work on it in the past few years though and it's a lot better than it used to be. I'm always pleasantly surprised when I go these days. They've added a while African exhibit area with lions and giraffes and they've added a kids farm area where you can feed goats and a few other fun exhibits that have made the zoo a lot nicer. 

My favorite part of the zoo is the butterfly exhibit they have every summer. It's only there for a few months, so I always try to go at least once. It's a big greenhouse type enclosure full of flowers and butterflies. I love butterflies and I love getting in there with my camera. After a few years of visiting the butterfly exhibit, I really have way more pictures of butterflies than I really need, but I enjoy taking pictures of them anyway. I'm going to make a separate blog post in a few minutes with the butterfly pictures I took today.

 The best part about the butterfly exhibit this year was that Clarissa is old enough to enjoy it! This is the first year we've really taken her in there. We were worried at first because Clarissa actually has a huge fear of bugs, especially flying bugs. We've been working with her because she completely falls apart if we're outside and something flies past her. She hates bugs. So I wasn't so sure how she'd do in a room full of butterflies, but it was really funny because she absolutely LOVED it! I don't think that she realizes that butterflies are bugs. If we're in the backyard and a dragonfly flies by, she freaks out. Butterflies, on the other hand, are apparently her new best friends. She wanted to touch them SO bad! We kept telling her that she couldn't touch them, they were just to look at. I could tell it was taking every ounce of willpower she has not to touch them. She was completely fascinated by them. We had a really good time with the butterflies. They liked Shawn's shirt, so he got a few ride alongs and Josh got one to land on his hand. 

My other favorite part of the zoo was feeding the sloth bear. Anytime there is an opportunity to feed an animal, I'm all over it. This animal feeding opportunity wasn't as fun as some of the others because you couldn't actually get close to the bear, but it was fun anyway. They gave us a cup of live mealworms and we dropped them one by one into a tube and the bear was on the other side of the tube behind glass and he sucked up the worms. It was kind of entertaining to watch. 

We also got to feed goats, and I always love doing that. Clarissa fed them and she kept saying that she fed the bunnies, lol. I don't know why she thought goats were bunnies, but it was cute. 

All in all it was a great trip to the zoo.The weather was beautiful and it was great day to view the animals. Fun was had by all! :)

Saturday, July 21, 2012


Happy Wendy is back! :) I took a little detour but I pushed through it and I'm feeling better now.

AND I decided to weigh myself again this morning and I lost 1.2 pounds! After all that whining yesterday about being stuck, I'm happy to report that my weight loss is unstuck, lol. So in three weeks and one day of dieting, I have officially lost 6.6 pounds. (The ticker on the side of my blog updates automatically from MyFitnessPal and it rounds up, so it says 7, but I'm not quite at 7.)

So needless to say I was in a better mood when I set out on my bike ride today. I set out to conquer the world this morning and I had big dreams of taking a longer ride, but when I got out there it was a good 10 degrees colder than it normally is on my rides (low 60's instead of low 70's) and my muscles just wouldn't warm up! I prefer cooler weather because it feels good to me, but my legs just didn't want to move this morning. The first two miles were torture. My leg muscles hurt worse than they normally do. I stopped for my halfway park bench water break and stretched and if felt better after that, but I still decided to head home at my normal mileage. No conquering the world today. Perhaps I'll conquer it next week. :)

And speaking of next week, I'm really looking forward to it! At the beginning of the year we had big talk about taking a summer vacation. It was going to be Canada and then Washington or Oregon. We had the money set aside for it and we were just deciding where to go. Shawn even scheduled the time off work for it so that we were sure we could go.

Then we went on our little spring cabin trip. We had fun but it reminded us what vacationing with a toddler is really like, lol. I love Clarissa dearly but she can be a high maintainence child! She's three, I think most three year olds are a little high maintainence.

Anyway, we started reconsidering whether spending a lot of money on a big road trip was really going to be worth it this year. In another year I think Clarissa will be a lot easier to take on long trips and I think we'll enjoy it more.

So we decided to scrap our plans for a big vacation this year. We have our year of adventure activities to keep up busy and now that we're to the week that we had planned to go, I'm glad that we're not going. Shawn and I are doing so great on our diets and I'm on such a roll with the bike rides that I'm afraid a week of vacation would have derailed that a bit. Dieting on vacation is a huge pain and I don't want to undo all the great work we've done. We'll go next year when we're skinny. :)

But Shawn decided to take next week off anyway since it was already scheduled and we're going to have lots of fun at home. We're actually think of doing a week of adventure and picking one thing off our year of adventure list every day next week. There are several things that would be easy to knock out, like go to the zoo, go geocaching, go to the aquarium, ect. We're finally going to get the screen built for our backyard movie theater too, which has been pushed back all summer. I'm determined to get that plan in motion.

So fun things are happening next week! If you're following our year of adventure, be sure to check in next week because we'll be adventuring all over town! :)

Friday, July 20, 2012


I'm having an off day. I woke up cranky this morning and my crankiness increased when I stepped on the scale (Friday is my official weigh in day) and I haven't lost a single ounce all week. The first two weeks of the diet the weight fell off really quickly and now...nothing. Nothing has changed, I'm still doing great on the diet and exercising every day, the scale just didn't move this week.

I've given myself several pep talks today. I know that sometimes when you start exercising and building muscle (and I definitely am with the bike riding) that your body looks better but the scale doesn't move at first. I know it's normal to go a week without losing weight when you're dieting, I keep reminding myself that diet and exercise is good for me regardless of what the scale says and that I started this because I wanted to feel better, it wasn't supposed to be about the numbers. I know all of that, but let's be honest, when you're dieting it's always about the numbers! I kept telling myself when I first started this whole thing that the number on the scale didn't matter. I just wanted to be healthier and feel better. It was all a big lie, I want to see that scale move, darn it!! :)

so I was a little cranky when I set out on my bike ride this morning. I was sluggish and not really into it, but I pushed through. I always force myself to go farther when I'm in a bad mood. I went almost six miles today. It's like I have to prove to myself that I can push through the sluggishness and not give up. On the days I think I can only do three miles I do six just to prove to myself that I can. When the defeatist attitiude creeps in I squash it with an extra lap through the park. I'm training myself to stop being a whiner and suck it up, lol.

And then I come on my blog and whine about not losing weight, so I'm not so sure if all that training is working yet. I'm still a work in progress. :)

So then I got home from my ride, took a shower and sat down to do my nails, which are still getting long and pretty, by the way! I actually had to file them down the other day because they were too long! I can't remember the last time in my life that that happened.

Anyway, I painted my nails and then tossed the bottle of nail polish into the big tote that I keep all my nail polish in. I didn't toss it hard or anything, not any different than I usually do, but it must have hit another bottle at exactly the right spot or something and the bottle shattered. Nail polish and glass all over the place. It was a gigantic mess to clean up and cleaning everything with acetone ruined the polish job I had just done on my nails, so I had to start over. My bedroom reeks of acetone now. Super awesome.

But in good news my heart palpitations are somewhat better today! They've gone from being super awful to just mildly annoying. I'll take it.

In other positive news, Shawn and I have been trying to get out more in the evenings by ourselves and last night we had a fun date to the grocery store (that sounds really sad, doesn't it?!). The other day we won two free donut coupons from a grocery store instant win game and last night we had enough calories left that we decided to get out of the house for half an hour and redeem our free donuts. We were like little kids in the car trying to hurry and finish our donuts before we got home so we wouldn't have to share with the kids, lol. Hey, when you're on a diet and someone gives you a free donut, you don't share with anyone!! I love spending time with Shawn. In case I haven't mentioned it lately, I love that man. :)

Ok, so now I'm going to go think about dinner and do something productive with the rest of my day! All that talk about donuts has made me hungry!

Thursday, July 19, 2012

36 days

I was just sitting here looking at the stats on my Cyclemeter app that show all my bike riding data.

The first ride I took was on June 14th. I went 2.8 miles, my average speed was 8.08mph and I seriously thought those 2.8 miles were going to kill me, lol.

June 14th was 36 days ago. In those 36 days I've taken 35 bike rides (I've missed some days and taken more than one ride on other days). I've gone a total of 152.94 miles and I've ridden for 16 hours and 2 minutes total.

Today I rode 5.34 miles and my average speed was 10.23mph. Those five miles today at a faster speed were easier than those first 2.8 miles at a slow speed on my first day. When I first started taking daily bike rides I would come home and collapse, gasping for breath and feeling like it was going to kill me. I still come home sweaty and out of breath, but not like before. I don't have to sit down and catch my breath for 10 minutes anymore. I come in the house, get something to drink and run upstairs to take a shower. I've also lost five pounds and I've gone up a gear on my bike, which means my legs are stronger.

10mph is still not really that fast on a bike and five miles a day still isn't really that far, but when I look at where I started 36 days ago I'm proud of myself for the improvements I've made. My asthma is better, my energy level is up, my body is stronger, and (aside from the mini detour I just took with the heart palpitations) I'm much happier. I know I still have a way to go but I'm excited about it. It's fun to watch the improvement in myself.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Return of the anxiety

It's been a rough couple of days.

I've struggled on and off with anxiety for years. Last year my anxiety came back and it was bad. Along with it came a host of health problems that were also bad. I went to therapy, the anxiety improved and the health problems went away.

One of the health issues I had last year were heart palpitations. Really, super, terrible, awful, uncontrollable heart palpitations. Not little ones that come and go occasionally, but super, really terrible, awful ones that feel like I'm having a heart attack 900 times a day. I went to the doctor, had an EKG, went to the cardiologist, wore a 24 hour heart monitor, and both doctors shrugged their shoulders and said "I dunno, must be anxiety." and sent me on my way.

Well yes, at the time I was going through terrible anxiety, but of course I was, I thought I was having a heart attack 900 times a day. They weren't panic attacks, I've had those and they're different, they were just all day crazy heart palpitations. My heart would skip beats, beat too fast, flip flop and thump weird all day and all night. That would make anyone anxious. It was a chicken or the egg situation. Was the anxiety causing the heart palpitations or were the heart palpitations causing the anxiety? I still don't know and the doctors did nothing but shrug their shoulders and pat me on my anxiety riddled head.

I tried everything. Different vitamins, cutting out certain foods, I went to therapy, I did Yoga and nothing really helped. And then one day...they stopped. I woke up one morning and said "hmm...that's weird, my heart isn't beating all crazy." And that was that. I have no idea what caused them and I have no idea what made them go away, but the day they went away was the happiest day of my life.

And now, as quickly as they went away, they have returned. I started feeling them off and on a few weeks ago and in the past few days they've been horrible, which has triggered my anxiety, which makes the palpitations worse and it's a whole downward spiral of feeling like crap and being paralyzed by it.

This is what happened last year. That wasn't the only issue I had going on last year, but it was a big one for a while. Feeling like my heart was going to explode at any moment was so scary for me when it first started happening that I was afraid to do anything or leave the house. I was afraid that anything that raised my heart rate was going to cause a heart attack or something. The thing is, my blood pressure is perfectly normal, my cholesterol is awesome, the EKG they did last year was normal, the halter monitor showed nothing weird besides palpitations, heart problems don't run in my family so I'm not at a high risk for them and my doctor insists that I'm perfectly fine. But when your heart is freaking out, it doesn't FEEL fine. There's nothing more aggravating for someone with anxiety than to be told that they're fine when they clearly don't feel fine. The palpitations are real, the doctor has heard them, even Shawn can hear them when he puts his ear to my chest. Basically some people just have heart palpitations and you just have to learn to live with them.

For someone without anxiety, maybe learning to live with them isn't a big deal. For someone with anxiety (and my biggest trigger is anything medical), that's easier said than done. People can tell me that I'm fine all day long, but when my heart is flipping and flopping all over the place, I'm pretty convinced that it's going to kill me. That's just what it's like to live with anxiety. I can go about my day and do what I have to do if I force myself, but on the inside I'm all sorts of freaking out. There's nothing more enjoyable than going through life convinced that everything is going to kill you, lol.

For a while last year my solution was to medicate myself and sit in my house. I let the anxiety take over and it was miserable. But over the past year I've learned coping skills and my anxiety has been a lot better. For the most part lately I've been totally fine. I got off all the medication I was on and decided that I was going to live my life, no matter what. The year of adventure project has been a way to get me out of the house and moving again and the bike hobby has helped a ton. I've been feeling like my old self again lately and it's been really really nice.

And then the palpitations came back and all the coping skills went out the window for a few days. The crappy thing is that it's the exercise that has been making me feel so much better but when I'm back to being convinced that I'm going to have a heart attack it makes me scared to exercise and without the exercise I'm going to spiral back down to where I was again, and I'm not going back there. I'm just not.

So yesterday morning I fought the urge to stay home and I rode my bike. Not only did I ride my bike but I went for six miles, even though I was sure I was going to have a heart attack in the middle of it. I called that giving my heart palpitations the middle finger, lol. Then last night I walked on the treadmill for 25 minutes (that has to be a record for me. Someone write that down.) and after that I did yoga and a guided meditation.

This morning I rode five miles and then went shopping. It is really really hard for me to function normally when my heart is thumping in my chest and my anxiety is through the roof but I'm forcing myself to ignore it and push on. That's really hard for me. I want to give into it and put my pj's back on and crawl back into bed. Last year, that's probably what I would have done. Not doing that requires all the willpower and energy I have, but I'm doing it.

So if you want the honest truth, I feel like crap. My heart is beating all crazy and it's freaking me out. But on the outside I'm pushing through it and living my life with a smile on my face. I'm going to fake it until I make it and the anxiety isn't going win this time.

I've come to accept over the past year that this anxiety is just part of who I am. For anyone who has never experienced it, it's really hard to understand. Every time it gets a little better I think it's gone for good and every time it comes back it's crushing. It's frustrating and exhausting and pushing through it is hard. I have to make the decision every day not to give into it and not to let it control my life and that's not always easy.

But I'm stronger now than I was before and I'm getting through it. The heart palpitations really aren't going to kill me, even if I'm convinced that they are. They went away before and I have a feeling that they'll go away again. I just have to put up with them for a while. The anxiety may be a part of my life forever, but I just keep reminding myself that there are worse problems in the world and I refuse to waste my life letting it control me.

So that's where I am right now. I'm pushing through. I'm forcing myself to get through the rest of the week and looking forward to next week because Shawn has the whole week off. He scheduled next week off because we were originally planning to go on a vacation but we changed our minds (more on that later) and he decided to keep the time off anyway and we're going to take a staycation instead. :) We'll find some fun things to do with the kids all week and we'll get some projects done around the house, which will be nice. I'm looking forward to him being home. Life is always more fun when he's home! :)

Monday, July 16, 2012

Riding in the rain

Wow, I did not want to ride my bike today. I know I've said that before but I think this morning was the worst. Most days I love it, but some days I really have to force myself and today was one of those days.

The high point of my ride was seeing a friend and neighbor out there riding her bike too. She's kind of new to daily bike rides too so seeing her out there working hard helped motivate me to keep going when I really wanted to give it up and go back to bed.

The other high point of the ride is that it started raining, which seems like it wouldn't be a high point, but I love rain. Being outside in the rain makes me happy.

So I had two things that made the ride bearable this morning, but mostly I just wanted to crawl back into my bed and eat chocolate.

The great thing about distance based exercises though, like walking, running or biking, is that it's sort of hard to just give up and go back to bed when you're a mile or more from home. You still have to finish your workout whether you want to or not because you still have to get home. Had I been riding the exercise bike in my basement I would have totally given up this morning. But once I'm at the park I realize I can't just give up. I'm there, I may as well keep going and I still have the ride home anyway.

So I did my five miles. Somewhat reluctantly, but I did it. I wear a heart monitor when I ride that syncs with the Cyclemeter app on my iPhone and updates me every few minutes on what my heart is doing (it's a Polar H7 if you're interested) and even my heart was working harder today than it normally does for the same speed and effort. My body just didn't want to ride today. But I did it anyway, and I'm always extra proud of myself on days like this because in the past I would have given up and this time I'm pushing through it no matter what. It's been really good for me to prove to myself that I can do hard things. This time I'm bound and determined to let my struggles make me stronger.

Saturday, July 14, 2012


Our family is complete again-Josh is home! He's a bit sunburned a bit scraped up from his adventures but he had a great time and I was SO happy to see him!

Here's what I love about Josh. While he was at camp he fell off his bike and scraped up his arm, he tripped over a tree in the dark and scraped up his leg, he tried to pass the swim test and couldn't do it and had to be pulled out of the lake, it rained all week at at some point his sleeping bag got wet and he slept in a cold wet sleeping bag, and yet he came home with a huge smile on his face, said how much fun he had and he was proud to tell us that he earned more merit badges than anyone in his troop. The leaders said that he was the hardest worker and had the best attitude of all the boys.

That's Josh in a nutshell. Josh goes through life with a smile on his face, ready to get in there and get the job done. I love that about him. I love watching him grow up and mature and I'm proud of the person he's becoming. It's hard to watch your kids become more independent and go out into the world on their own, but it's easier knowing that I can always count on Josh to tackle whatever he encounters with a smile on his face.

And mostly I'm just glad to have him home safe and sound and under our roof again. It's good to let your kids go out into the world without you and learn to be their own person, but it always feels really good when they return to the nest. :)


Last month I was excited when I finally went five miles on my bike. Today I'm excited because I lost almost another pound this morning and now I've lost 5.2 pounds total. Yay! It's a good feeling to see the hard work paying off and it just makes me want to work harder.

Last night we took a family bike ride (minus Josh, who will FINALLY be home this afternoon!!). Matthew has been begging us all week to take a bike ride in the evening but it has just been too hot. It's been over a hundred most of the week. But last night the temperature finally gave us a break and it was about 85 degrees so we decided to get out there while we could. It was a nice ride to the park. We stopped to talk to one of Shawn's co-workers who was also there and we rode around until the sun started to set and it was time to head home. The perfect end to the day. :)

Friday, July 13, 2012


One more day until Josh comes home and I lost one pound this morning! Yay! And that pretty much sums up everything exciting going on here today. :)

Thursday, July 12, 2012


Only two more days after today till we get Josh back! I miss him, it's driving me crazy not to be able to hear about what he's doing and all the adventures he's having. I really hope he's having fun. He was a bit nervous about going, so I think that's making me nervous for him. The camp they went to is awesome though and there are a million fun activities there that I know he's going to love, so I'm sure he's having a ball. I can't wait for him to get home and tell me all about it.

I've been doing great this week getting up an hour early to ride my bike. It's actually probably a good thing that I had to do it anyway, because it's been over 100 degrees here all week and it starts getting hot pretty early in the day, so the earlier I bike the better. I hate it when it gets this hot. I've been really wanting to take evening bike rides this week, but it's just too hot. I have no heat tolerance. I'd get halfway down the street and have to come in the house for some ice cream. :)

It's been fun to be at the park an hour earlier in the morning and see all different people. I've gotten used to the park regulars I see on my regular morning ride who are walking or jogging, but it's a whole different group of people an hour earlier. I'm still usually the only one on a bike though. Most people I see in the park are walking their dogs or jogging. That's fine with me, that means I don't have to share the bike lane with anyone and watch all the good cyclists lap me. :) I just huff and puff along and do my thing. It's working for me.

The problem I ran into this morning is that the air quality is terrible here right now because of all the fires. It was hazy and I could smell it in the air when I opened the garage door. It can be dangerous for me to inhale too much of that with my asthma, in the past I would mostly try to stay indoors on bad air quality days, but I got through the bike ride OK. I just went a little slower and tried not to overdo it too much. My asthma is noticeably better since I started riding my bike. When I first started riding it bothered me a lot, now it's down to being more of a minor irritation. As long as I use my inhaler before I start I'm usually fine.

All in all it's been a pretty quiet week around here. Because it's so hot outside we've spent most of the week indoors. It's supposed to cool down just a bit next week though, so hopefully we can get back outside during the day and start doing family bike rides in the evening again. Boise is a nice place to live, but I could definitely do without 108 degrees days in July.

For now I'm going to clean my house and try to find something to keep the kids entertained for a while. Nothing too exciting around here today!

Tuesday, July 10, 2012


I've now gone over 24 hours without talking to Josh. He's at scout camp all week, and I'm sure he's fine, but I miss him! Usually when we're out of town or away from the kids I at least talk to them on the phone once a day. Not being able to hear from Josh all week feels weird! I hope he's having fun, I can't wait to hear about all of his exciting adventures when he returns.

This morning a friend came with me on my bike ride (Karen, of course!). She's an experienced bike rider. I rode 40 miles total last month. She rode 40 miles in one day last month. I warned her when she asked if she could come along that I'm not a very good cycling companion. She can go fast and far. I can go slow and feel like I'm going to die after mile 2. Still, we had a good time. Usually I've got my headphones in my ears and I tune out the world while I ride. It was fun having someone to talk to.

So yesterday we cheated just a bit on our diet. Shawn came home from work last night and I hadn't figured out dinner yet and we both realized that we had a ton of calories left so we decided to order pizza. It's possible to eat pizza and still stay on the diet if you have the calories to spare, but we noticed that Pizza Hut now has garlic bread pizza, which sounded SOO good, but it's new and there isn't a calorie listing for it yet. We decided to live on the wild side and order it anyway. It was good, but I'm sure it was a million calories. I didn't overdo it and actually, I probably did manage to eat within my calorie allotment, but there's no way to know for sure. If I went over it probably wasn't really that much.

But last night I started feeling guilty about it. I started to worry that maybe I had gone way over my calories and that maybe I was way off on estimating (we decided to use the calories for deep dish meat lovers pizza, because we figured that would probably compare calorie wise). I went downstairs and told Shawn I was feeling guilty and he was feeling the same way. We both exercised to make up for it. I actually went down to the basement and used the exercise bike, which has been collecting dust for years.

I hate exercise equipment. I hate treadmills, I hate elliptical machines, I hate exercise bikes, I hate all of it. They're boring, it's hot and sweaty and I don't have the attention span to do it very long. I managed to do the exercise bike for 15 minutes, which is probably some sort of record for me. It's about 14.5 minutes longer than I wanted to do it, I can tell you that! I love riding my bike because I love the sunshine and the fresh air and the grass and the trees. Sitting on a plastic bike in my basement doesn't exactly create the same atmosphere. Maybe someday I will learn to love exercise equipment, but I kind of doubt it.

Anyway, the extra exercise gave me a little calorie buffer in case I really did go over my calories, but hopefully I didn't. I'm sure it was fine and even a little cheat every now and then isn't a big deal. I was just kind of amused at how much a potential cheat freaked us out. We're hardcore on this diet thing. I didn't expect to be that way because I generally have a hard time taking diets very seriously. I usually like to diet just about as much as I like to ride plastic bikes in my basement. We're in it for the long haul this time though. I don't know what is different this time, but it's sticking and I like it. The more I ride my bike the better I feel and the better I feel the better I want to look. I don't want to do all that hard work on my bike and then come home and undo it all with junk food. It's feeling really good to get healthy and strong. I should have done this a long time ago.

Monday, July 9, 2012

Girly nails!

Remember a few weeks ago when I was posting about my favorite things and I posted about how much I love nail polish, but only for my toes because my fingernails aren't girly?

My fingernails got girly! For the first time in my life I decided to try growing them out and having girly fingernails. I don't know why, I think it's part of this whole reinventing of myself. The new Wendy wakes up early to exercise and paints her fingernails, I guess. :)

I've only been growing them out for a few weeks. I bought this stuff called Rejuvacote, which is like clear nail polish that you apply once a day that is supposed to make your nails strong so they'll grow, and it turns out that it works. My ugly fingernails are starting to get pretty for the first time! It's only been a few weeks, so they're not that long yet, but they look better than they have in years.

So I decided that now that my nails are growing I wanted to start painting them. I have a ton of nail polish because I paint my toes all the time, so I figured I'd jump right in and paint my fingernails. Except that when you've never really painted your fingernails in your life and then you try to paint them fun bright colors, it just looks really weird. I'm not used to it. I've tried to paint them a few times over the past few weeks but it looks weird to me and I take it right back off.

So I decided to start slow and paint them a light, barely there color. I used a color called Best Boy Friend by Essie that is a super light mauve that practically looks like clear polish unless you use three coats. It made my nails shiny and pretty with just a hint of color.

After living with that for a few days I decided to add some gold sparkles to it, so I used another Essie color called Gold as it Gets, which is a really pretty shimmery gold. You almost can't even see it unless you look at it in the right light. I love the effect, it's really pretty.

After living with that for a few days I decided to get really crazy (well, crazy for me, which is really...not) and I painted the tips with a Sally Hansen Gem Crush color that I think is called Big Money. The Gem Crush polish is super fun, but a really weird consistency. It's thick and chunky, so I used it very sparingly and just painted a light coat on the tips of my nails.

For my very first girly nail manicure I think it turned out kind of pretty, here are the results:

Eventually I'm going to be brave enough to put fun colors on my fingernails and I'm excited for them to grow out a little longer, but this was fun to start out with.

I love nail polish blogs. Even though I've never had pretty fingernails and only painted my toes, I love to look at nail art blogs and look at all the cool designs and neat polish tricks. If I get better at it and do something else fun with my nails I will be sure to report back! :)


I'm having an awesome Monday morning!

At 5:30 this morning we got Josh off to Scout Camp. I had a hard time letting him go and I'm going to miss him like crazy all week, but he was really excited about it and I think this is going to be a positive experience for him. He's going to have a lot of fun.

Then I weighed myself and I've lost another pound. YAY! That brings it up to a piddly three pounds, but it's a start! At least I know it's working. 

Then I checked Facebook and found something fun. I have a super cool cousin who loves to travel and she's been all over the world. She happens to be in Seoul this week, and I couldn't possibly be more jealous!! :) Anyway, a couple of days ago I told her the about the restaurant that Shawn and I loved so much. I had no idea what it's called, I only know that it's down an alley in Insadong and that it has a tree in the middle of it. One of our favorite memories of our trip to Seoul was eating in that restaurant and then spending an entire afternoon searching for it so that we could eat there again. 

So this morning when I woke up I found a message on Facebook from her, and she found the restaurant! She ate there and took a picture for me! I was so excited, she even got the name of it. It's called Chon. I can't believe she found it! Now that I know the name of it, I could look it up and it even has a website! http://insadongchon.com. It totally made my day. I found a picture of the restaurant online. Here it is!

Then I went on my bike ride, which I have to do an hour earlier this week because with Josh at Scout Camp I can't leave Matthew and Clarissa home alone so I have to go before Shawn leaves for work. The fact that I'm happily getting up an hour early to exercise is kind of blowing my mind, lol. Riding my bike has turned me into a whole different person. A person who gets up an hour early to exercise. Crazy. :) In fact, my two good friends walk together every morning and they didn't even bother to ask me if I wanted to do it with them because they knew I wouldn't. This morning I passed them on my bike. Ha, take that, friends who didn't think I'd get up early to exercise. :) Look at me now! lol (p.s. Hi Karen! You looked cute this morning! Thanks for telling me I didn't look stupid in my fat pants!) 

When I got home from my bike ride I checked my stats on my Iphone app and I have officially ridden 100 miles on my bike since last month!! ME! I rode 100 miles! The same person who couldn't even make it to the park on the first day and the same person who thought those first three miles were going to kill her has ridden 100 miles! I'm proud of me. 

So to recap, Scout camp, 3 pounds, the restaurant with the tree in the middle is called Chon, 100 miles on my bike, ha to my friends who underestimated just how much I ROCK, super good Monday morning.  And now I shall drink a smoothie and take a shower.  :)

Saturday, July 7, 2012


I love my Fitbit! It's the little digital pedometer that I posted about last week. Shawn and I have had a lot of fun comparing stats and trying to get more steps each day. The info uploads to the Fitbit website where it we can make daily goals and look at charts and graphs of our stats. Last night at 10:00 I was getting ready for bed and checked my Fitbit steps and I was about 600 from my daily step goal, less than half a mile from my mileage goal and two flights of stairs away from my stair goal. I was already in my pajamas but I didn't want to go to bed that close to my goal so I got dressed again and Shawn and I took a walk around the block and I ran up and down the stairs twice and then I could happily go to bed with all my goals met.

I never would have done that before! I'm not a night person. Once my pajamas are on, a house fire could barely convince me to get dressed and get out of the house. But ever since I started taking my daily bike rides and paying attention to my Fitbit stats I've had way more energy in the evening. I'm actually enjoying all the exercise. Even the diet is kind of fun. As long as I get my exercise in, I don't really feel like my calories are that restricted. I have to pay attention to what I eat but I'm not starving. I still eat occasional ice cream and other treats, just less of it. We'll see if I'm still this enthusiastic about it a month from now, but so far so good! :)

Today we've been running around getting Josh packed up for Scout Camp. He leaves early Monday morning and will be home on Saturday evening. It's going to be really weird having him gone all week. I'm going to miss him! He's never been gone this long before and my mom anxiety is kicking in but I'm trying to be OK about it. He's excited and he'll be fine. They're going to have a good time and everything I've read about it sounds like so much fun! I kind of wish I could go to camp for a week!

So all in all, things are going great around here these days. Tonight we're home relaxing and we're going to eat some ice cream because we managed to have a lot of calories left over. I made chicken and black bean burritos for dinner that were less than 300 calories and super yummy! Yay for low calorie dinners! :)

Friday, July 6, 2012


Well, I've officially been dieting for one week and I've lost two pounds. Yay me! :)

Last night I decided that I needed to go shopping for more cycling clothes. I have been wearing the same shirt and pants every single morning and it's a pain to keep washing them, so I really need another set I can rotate through.

Shopping for spandex pants and clingy shirts when you are unhappy with your body is torture. It's pretty much like bathing suit shopping. Shawn went with me and I think I tried on everything in the store. There are super cute cycling clothes out there. All of them looked way cute on the rack and completely ridiculous on me. I finally settled on the least hideous outfit and purchased it. It still looks terrible on me, but less terrible than everything else in the store. If it wasn't a million times more comfortable to bike in riding clothes than my regular clothes I wouldn't bother, but it really is. Every time I take a bike ride in my regular clothes I wish I had put on my cycling clothes. It's way better, I just look stupid.

So I am now the proud owner of some new fat pants and a new way too clingy shirt and I sincerely apologize to anyone who happens to be in the park every morning. I made a goal for myself last night that when I lose a certain amount of weight I'm going to go back to the cycle shop and buy myself a super cute cycling outfit. There's nothing like knowing you have to wear spandex pants in public every day to motivate weight loss! :)

And speaking of the diet, it's actually going really well. Because I can eat back my exercise calories I'm actually not finding it that hard to diet. I even had a s'more last night and managed to come in under my calorie allotment. MyFitnessPal is really awesome, it's working great for me. Shawn and I are doing it together and that has made it even more fun. I've dieted by myself before but it's way better doing it with Shawn. It sucks when you have to watch the whole family eat whatever they want while you're munching on lettuce. It sucks less when you can pass the lettuce to your spouse. :)

Ok, so now I'm off to take my bike ride. If you see me out there, shield your eyes, I'm coming at you with the fat pants. :)

Thursday, July 5, 2012

Six miles!!

I did NOT want to take a bike ride this morning. I stayed up really late last night, didn't sleep well and then I had really weird, long, crazy dream that really stuck with me when I woke up. I couldn't shake it and it just got my morning off to a weird start. It's cloudy outside, my muscles hurt...I thought of a million reasons why today would be the perfect day to skip my bike ride.

But I dragged myself out there for two reasons. First, because I know myself and as soon as I start finding reasons to take a day off, one day will become two and then three and then five and then you'll never hear about me riding my bike again and I'll slip back into last years fiasco and I don't want that. Second, I'm calorie counting on my diet and I can eat more when I exercise. :) It's super awesome to burn off a few hundred calories first thing in the morning and then watch my daily available calories go up. It makes dieting WAY easier.

So I went. I started slow, kind of in a bad mood and stuck in my head. The dream I had last night was still bugging me and I analyzed it as I rode, which is pointless but sometimes I do it anyway.

I got to the park, unmotivated and going through the motions. I made it two and a half miles and took my normal park bench stop to drink water and catch my breath. I sat there for a minute and tried to force myself to think positive thoughts and be in a better mood and then I decided to screw the positive affirmations and just be mad for a while, lol.

I have an iPod playlist that I use when I ride my bike that is mostly full of upbeat, happy, motivational songs. While I was sitting on the park bench I decided to switch it to some mad music. I have a small collection of mad songs. Is that weird? :)

And so I started the second half of my ride. Just me and my mad music. And then I got mad. I rode fast and in my mind I imagined riding over all the hurdles in my life. I rode over a few people in my life who have really hurt me and let me down. I rode over anxiety, I rode over depression and I rode over the number on the scale this morning. I rode over sore muscles and weird dreams and cloudy skies. I made it another lap, and usually that's when I exit the park and head home and as I got close to the exit I decided that I had one more lap in me. I NEVER have one more lap in me. Every day I do three laps and I'm counting the seconds until I hit the exit and can head home. But today I was mad enough that I needed one more lap. I still had some imaginary hurdles to drive over.

So I rode. I rode one more lap and hit five miles just as I got to the exit of the park. I knew that that point that I was going to be close to six miles if I went home right then, but it's not quite a mile to the park from my house. I decided that if I was going to get that close to six miles I was going to make it all the way so I took the long way home, making a loop around a back road that I don't normally ride to insure that I'd get the full six miles.

I pulled in to my driveway at 6.13 miles. A new record. And you know what? I was so freakin' proud of myself that I stopped being mad. I rode six miles today! SIX!! When I started riding my bike last month I couldn't even go ONE without feeling like it was going to kill me. Six miles is still not that far on a bike, and I still can't ride fast and I still look stupid in my spandex pants, but I rode six miles today, on a day when I didn't really even want to get out of bed, and that made me feel like a rockstar. What I learned today was that sometimes to accomplish something, you just have to get a little mad. :)

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Our Year Of Adventure: Go To Eagle Island

Happy 4th of July! We've had a great day!

Last night we talked about setting up the tent in the backyard and having a camp out but we eventually decided to have a family room camp out instead. We had a fun movie night and everyone slept in the family room. The kids loved it!

Shawn had the day off work today for the holiday so this morning he went with me on my bike ride. Shawn is in much better shape than me. We came home and I collapsed on the couch in a sweaty heap and he went about his morning like he had just walked to the mailbox and back. I think I realized why I prefer to do my biking solo. :)

After I recovered from my ride we packed up the cooler and headed to the lake! Going to Eagle Island was one of our Year of Adventure goals and it's one the kids have been looking forward to. Eagle Island is a recreation area not too far from our house. There is a lake, a playground and a nice sandy beach area for the kids to play. We used to go when the boys were younger but it's been a while and they've really been looking forward to going back.

I'm pretty sure the Fourth of July is the busiest day of the year there, and we knew that before we went, but we were still surprised at just how many people were there! It was PACKED! We had to park really far away and pack all of our stuff in, which was great for my exercise stats but tiring!

When we got everything set up we had a really fun picnic. Shawn and I are both tracking our calories on MyFitnessPal, and it's really hard to stick to your diet on a holiday, but I'm proud of us, because we totally did it. I usually pack lots of treats and not so healthy food when we go on a picnic but this time we were careful to stick to healthier food. We had sandwiches, chips (baked for Shawn and I), apples, carrots and popsicles for desert. Not a cookie or piece of chocolate in sight. Way to go Wendy. :)

Clarissa was absolutely DYING to finish lunch and go play in the water. She could hardly stand to stay on the blanket while we ate, we kept having to tell her to sit down and finish eating. Finally we were done and she made a mad run to the water. That kid LOVES water. I'm going to get her in swimming lessons soon. She's a little fish. When the boys were little they were mostly happy just to sit in the sand and build sand castles, but Clarissa had no interest in the sand. She wanted to be in the water every second.

All three kids had so much fun splashing and playing. We stayed for the afternoon and they wore themselves out. When everyone was hot and tired we packed up and headed home. Clarissa fell asleep in the car before we even made it down the street. She was exhausted!

Tonight Shawn is taking the boys to the fireworks in town. It's too late at night for Clarissa and I'm not much of a night owl, so we're going to stay home. We had actually planned to do fireworks in our backyard and then have smores tonight, but we decided to stretch the fun out a bit and do that tomorrow night. I like making holidays last for a few days. :)

Here are some pictures I took of the fun today. A couple of days ago Clarissa and I had a good time playing salon and I gave us patriotic toes. They looked way better a few days ago than they do today, but I had to take a picture anyway!

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

In it together

This morning on my bike ride I saw one of my neighbors walking in the park. She's trying to get back in shape too. I stopped to talk and we commiserated over how hard it is to get back in shape and how we hoped we'd be seeing each other in the park at the end of the summer looking hot and happy. :)

Every other day or so I see a guy walking/jogging in the park who looks like he's also at the beginning of his journey. In fact, he looks like he's in serious pain most of the time. I don't know him and I've never spoken to him but I silently cheer him on every time I pass him. 

Since I signed up for MyFitnessPal I've had several people add me as a friend so we can cheer each other on. Most are internet friends, but one is a neighbor, and Shawn also signed up to get back in shape. He's doing a weight loss challenge with some friends at work. They all put in $50 and the winner gets the money.

I LOVE feeling like we're all in it together. It's been nice for me to look around and realize that I'm not the only person struggling to get back in shape. It also really helps to be accountable to someone. That's actually one of the reasons I've been blogging so much about it. It's motivation to keep going when you've talked it up so much! I put a weight loss ticker on the side of my blog for that reason. I'm just going to put it all out there. It will help keep me motivated. 

My blog continues to reinvent itself. It started as an adoption blog, it was an outlet for me when I was struggling last year and for the time being I guess it will be more of a weight loss blog. I guess it's always just been a public journal of my life, so as my life changes so does the blog. I'm not really even sure if anyone is reading my blog anymore, but it's a great outlet for me. 

So if you're still here, stick with me, I'm making changes and I'll be blogging about it every step of the way! :)

Monday, July 2, 2012


Miles biked today: 5
Miles biked this week so far: 10
Miles biked last week: 33
Miles biked last month: 56
Miles biked this year: 66

Favorite iPod biking songs (The ones that push me to go a little farther and a little faster when I think I'm done):

What Doesn't Kill You(Stronger)-Kelly Clarkson
Live Like There's No Tomorrow-Selena Gomez
Happy-Natasha Beddingfield
Firework-Katy Perry
The Edge Of Glory-Lady Gaga
Dog Days Are Over-Florence+The Machine
Over You-Daughtry
Raise Your Glass-Pink
Stronger-Brittney Spears
The Remedy-Jason Mraz

Weight lost since I started tracking: 1.6 pounds

Percent happier since I started riding my bike: about a million :)

Sunday, July 1, 2012

Our Year Of Adventure: Take a Family Bike Ride

We did it!! After a LOT of work, we finally got the entire family out on a bike ride! It was a short ride, but long enough that I decided to go ahead and count it for the Year of Adventure list. I'm positive that we'll be going on plenty more family rides this year!

This goal took a lot more work and preparation than any of the other goals we've done this year. When I put it on the list I knew that it was going to take some work. I was afraid that I was too out of shape to even do a good family bike ride, Matthew couldn't really ride a bike very well, we didn't have bikes for both boys that fit them, we weren't sure what we were going to do with Clarissa...there were a lot of hurdles to pass before we could pass off this goal.

So I've done a lot of work over the past month, which I obviously won't rehash since I've already shared most of it! We got bikes for the boys, I got in shape enough to go, we got the bike trailer working for Clarissa and Shawn spent some time with Matthew getting him some more practice on his bike.

And FINALLY-we realized this evening that everyone is ready and we decided to take test run around the neighborhood. It didn't go super smoothly at first. Shawn had been practicing with Matthew earlier today and Matthew has a great bike that was working perfectly and as soon as we started off on the family ride, his brakes started making a weird noise and rubbing on the wheel when he rode. Of course that would happen! We've had so many problems with our boys bikes. I'm sure that the brakes just need to be adjusted and it will be fine. We decided that it wasn't a big enough deal to turn around and the bike was still totally rideable for a short ride, so we kept going.

We ended up just making a couple of laps around the block. I don't think we even went a mile. It was mostly just a test run. I want to do a few shorts rides through the neighborhood to make sure that everything is working right and everyone can keep up and ride together before we haul everything over to the green belt for a long ride.

It was a short ride, but we did it and it was fun! Bike riding is most definitely going to be a regular family hobby. Josh and I especially have really developed a love for bike riding over the past few weeks. Both of us just want to keep going and going. Shawn and Matthew are loving it too, but they haven't had a chance to go out as much as we have. Clarissa has just been excited to ride in her "yellow bike", which is what she calls the bike trailer. I'm looking forward to next summer when she'll be old enough to get her own bike!

When I started this year of adventure list, I knew that it would be good for our family but I don't think I realized HOW good it would be. We're learning so much and having so much fun trying new activities. When I put bike riding on the list I hoped that we'd take a few rides sometime during the summer but it's turned into way more than that. It's part of our lives now. We can't wait to get back outside and hop back on our bikes every chance we get!

Here are a few pictures I took before we set off on the big ride! (Don't worry, Shawn and Clarissa put their helmets on before we went.) :)