Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Makin' it Work

One of my mottos in life ("mantras" if your verbiage is cooler than mine) is Make it Work. I attribute this one to my mother, who is the ultimate make-it-worker. As a single mom she did just this! I spent a lot of time, especially in high school, doing a LOT of stuff.  Most if not all of my activities made my mom's time, money and "rides" a must. Side note: Now that I have teens, it is very apparent to me that they never say "Can you drive me..." they always say "Can I get a ride..."  "Heidi needs a ride..." "Can we give Nick a ride...." (profound observation from yours truly.  Another quasi obvious one: they say "I was all like" every time they quote themselves) More on teenagers later...and I used to think I wanted to write a book on being a bridesmaid. This material grows by the day!

Making it work means being flexible and staying positive. If you went to PLNU or perhaps another institution that focused on "the whole student," you just might know your Top 5 Strengths.  Well, my #2 Strength (in descending order naturally) is Positivity.  Positivity is not actually a word, though its meaning is probably pretty clear, even to the virgin-Strengths-Quester.

Things just do not work (not well at least) if attitude falls apart the minute things become inconvenient, out of the ordinary or just simply unplanned. Positivity and flexibility in these situations makes things much easier...especially for those around you (and maybe even your husband as just a random example).  See what I just did there?  I pointed out that my awesome attitude improves my husband's life.  We'll see if he agrees when he gives me his feedback on this post later.  

Lately things have been just a bit hectic.  Every evening necessitates a planning pow-wow of sorts for the following day.  Who is going where?  Making dinner? Getting a "ride?"  I am the one needing rides here recently.  I could be bothered daily by this short period of time that I'm without my own ride or I can just make it work. Aside from the semi-weekly, casual check-in on the situation (always subtle), I think I'm doing a decent job. I'll probably get some feedback on that later too.  I choose to be flexible and in this situation, focus on the following:

Even though I'm forced to get up earlier when my early bird leaves in the morning- I make it advantageous by either:
1. Using the time to workout buildingside before I get ready and enter my office (see This is how we do it and ridiculous photo below) or
2. Minimizing the morning tasks at home (ultimate goal always being to sleep a little longer) by doing my makeup in the car and preparing my oatmeal on the clock, without a secret crock pot.

7:15 stretching on the stairs before circuit/work day.  The 8 fwy is underneath those capris

Preparation is of course another key component in making things work (My #1 Strength, since you're wondering, is Strategic. Quick reminder that these are not self-appointed). Leaving the house in workout gear means the day's pencil skirt, blouse, cami, heels and bra are ready to go and in my backpack.  Did I mention that I really love my backpack?  It's from Costco.  I really love Costco. Naturally the makeup bag and a couple bobby pins for taming my beastly mane already live inside the backpack.

More preparedness (or strategery, if you will) for this particular lesson in Makin' it work...
Sure I can thank the staff lounge for the paper goods, spork and individual creamer,
But the Honey Bear and cinnamon from my desk drawer...that was no accident.

And speaking of hair...what?  It's a no brainer that being flexible, positive, and prepared are all vital when it comes to a gal's hair.  Makin' it work in regards to the hair today meant finding a way to get it professionally under control for under 50 bucks! Ladies you know what a mountain this is to climb. I won't go into all the details but let's just say taking advantage of a "Refer a Friend" coupon and a captive email audience saved this blonde some dough.  I have kiddos that need all sorts of things these days, leaving an overdue cut and colour off the list of priorities by just a smidge.  So maybe a little creativity is also necessary for makin' it work?

(insert life lesson music from "Full House" here)
I think one of life's biggest tricks is making you think that everyone else's (or maybe just your perfect facebook friend's) life is easier and better than yours.  I am realistic enough to know that my life will pretty much only be smooth sailing on Sunday afternoons...and days when I pretend to be sick (then return to work with a sunburn. oops).  There will always be more wants than haves and less time than there are tasks to accomplish. Do what you can. Make the best of it and make it work. Attitude is everything (this is a real quote).  You can "Google image" it and come up with this modern gem...

And just a few footnotes before I hit Publish:
I should make it known that I believe there are times and places when you should NOT make it work. If you find yourself in a relationship with a total jabrone, stop trying so hard...and get outta there, fast.  If you just served your family a turkey and black bean "burrito" with cherry tomatoes on the side (obligatory dinner vegetable), stop trying to make what's in the fridge "work" and go grocery shopping.  This just got personal.

Final and somewhat related quote: 
"Who's got it better than us??? 
Can you name the hunk who said it?

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Besitos- A Bachelor Final Rose Recap

It is a challenge to really structure this "recap" post, so instead I turn to bullet points- let's call them Besitos.
  • If I had to use one word over and over again, and I did from 8-11pm last night, it would be Awkward! Awkward scenes with Claire, Awkward Venezuelan family scenes, Awkward that Nikki isn't loved...just so awkward.

  • Did anyone else feel I don't know, NOT surprised at all, when Claire shared that she had never "told off" a man before? Yea...we could tell.  We like you for the most part...but that move needs some work.  The worst thing you can ever do while telling someone off is stumble over your (awkward) words.  Truly the only part I could get behind was her Stand-Back-Buddy! pose when he immediately went in for a hug after dumping her (in lieu of proposing). 
Where it all began...the big TELLING Off, that is

  • Hey Nikki, stop pretending you DON'T care if this man says he loves you or not.  It's okay to be a human being and want to be loved...mostly by the person you claimed YOU loved in front of the entire county. Get real. I'm reminded of a scene from my early 20's... I was out in PB with a group of friends, one being an extremely bright friend from college (she's now a Doctor, normal things). Two of us (at the time) had pritty, pritty large chests *This is why "Boobs" is an official Label on this blog, for another time... From inside a cab, the Dr. yelled out the window to some rif raf, "HEY!  YOU WANNA SEE SOME DOUBLE D's!?"  Naturally the entire purpose was to make us Double D'ers squirm. It worked.  The group (of rif raf) surprisingly ignored her.  The Dr's response, "NO?!?....You're a LIAR!"  Case in point. *To take this parallel a bit deeper: Wanting to see big boobs (males) = wanting to be loved (females).  If you say you don't want either, well you're just not telling the truth.  And also, males like love too. 

  • I haven't been a big fan of Sharleen (the Opera lady) this season but I thought she did an amazing job articulating how Juan Pablo's family "warned" the girls about him, then how he completely patronized Claire leading her to ignore her intuition.  I mean literally, his mother said that he was rude and made her cry. His primo (I speak spanish, did you know that?) asked BOTH girls how good at NOT running away they were.  Hmmmm.  Also, I'm beginning to think Sharleen gets prettier and prettier as the time after her dramatic exit goes on.  But last night...that lipstick! I found it a little big terrifying.       
  • bachelor-finale-sharleen-eyelashes
    If her lips were red I'd probably want to be her.  Instead, they're purple.

  • Back to Nikki...She deserves some attention for crying out loud...even if it's just from bloggers! In case you didn't watch, JP (silent J- not to be confused with Bachelorette Ashley's season) wants everything, including whether or not he loves his final rose recipient, to be "private." Poor girl went on the Bachelor for at least a little fame.  Sheesh.  Nikki has a super hot bod. I have to admit if my stomach were that flat, I'd probably dress a little on the provocative side too.  Just being honest.  However, there is a time and definitely a place!  Exposing your entire back and back tat is one thing on a beach in Saint Lucia, maybe even atop a horse.  Heading to meet your future in-laws (OR possibly to your engagement) in such attire is quite another. I'm pretty sure everyone will remember how impressive Nikki's body is even if it's slightly covered up a few times...
Heading to the final rose and romantic "I like you aLOT!" 

  • I absolutely love the way Chris Harrison handled everything on the very awkward (told you I'd keep saying it) After the Final Rose show.  I think I may have said (to the TV) "Good for HIM!" a couple of times. Way to say exactly what "Bachelor Nation" is thinking and handle your own in the midst of such pride and arrogance. Chris really has this gig down.

  • So.  Many.  More. Comments.  But only so many besitos to go around.

  • I close the door on this season with one very important lesson:  Don't marry (or date) the guy that all of America despises.  Don't even marry or date the guy that any of your friends or family despise.  

How about that?

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

This is how we do it

Alright this just got real. It's March.

As of last week I skied for the last time this season and Winter is officially over. So is not being in shape because it's cold outside.  Between you and me it's really only been cold like twice.

I will readily admit that the only way I work out regularly (which I should do every month, not just March through November) is if I can get it done in the morning before work.  After work I have this total distraction called a family that I want to spend every possible moment it's dark and scary outside! Even though 2014 is the year I become a "Morning Person," I still struggle to get out of bed an hour early to exercise. We're only a quarter way through the year right?

This morning I got to work at 7:15 to get in a pre-work-work-out. Much like I've confessed that I'm not a style blogger, before taking this any further I'd like to also say that I don't think I'm a fitness blogger.  Trust me, I'd love to be both, but instead I'm kind of a wannabe...not to the extent that I was in junior high when I wrote Nirvana and "NIN" on my backpack, but definitely to some extent.

I figure there are plenty of others out there who also have a full time job, family, commitments and so on, that might need to think outside the box for the sake of fitting it all in. And so, I contribute what I can on this topic.

"Outside the box" exercise plan...
Note the paperclip at the top.  Get it? I'm at work.
Photo Collage Clockwise:  Selfie of me being impressed with myself (and my puffy vest)
Walkway from the "15 minuter" route to the top level of our parking structure
Handicap bathroom "get ready" photo opp.
The mirrored building next door- likely where people point and laugh from
Calf raises on the stairs

I work in a pretty industrial area right off one of the busiest freeways in San Diego.  Of all the beautiful options in this town, it's probably one of the least appealing outdoor workout spots.  Why not go to the gym, you ask?  Because going to an entirely different location takes even more time in an already harsh morning- baby steps. Here is my weird little routine I did today, that got me totally sweating and pumped before 8 hours of sitting at a desk.

  • I started out with The 15 minuter- On "15 minute breaks" (this is what you look forward to when you're office bound) some gals and I take little walks. This morning I did the normal route-speed walk style. Since I was wearing my vest and 2011 Nikes, I really owned the whole kinda-cool-Mom look. Fitness people/foot enthusiasts please don't be concerned, I haven't actually been wearing these sneakers since 2011...I've had them since 2012 but got them from Nordstrom Rack where they ended up after being unsuccessful in the 2011 athletic shoe market.
  • My speed walk route ended on the side of my building (I don't own the building, I just work in it...and apparently work out beside it).  See interesting walkway/planter photo above.  Here I proceeded to do a made-up circuit-ish workout. Pinterest has done wonders for getting circuit training ideas out there. Lord knows I won't go to Crossfit at 5am (or pay for that kinda thing) so I take advantage of this free service. I pretend I'm an expert and pick and choose from the many available circuits, to create my own. I'm not sure if the combination of things I do is as great as some of the established "Pinned" ones, but I figure they can't hurt!  
  • Starting at the bottom of the stairs/top of the walkway, I did 25 Jumping Jacks.  Every 5 jacks I did the kind of jack you do to a punching sound in Turbo Kick Boxing classes...or for the cheerleaders out there- an "X Jump" or "Spread Eagle." Those burned some extra calories (I think).
  • Then I skipped steps up the stairs (sort of like lunging up the stairs) to the top and for another 25 Jacks. I did this until I had completed two sets of up-the-stairs-lunges (do I know my exercise terms or what?) and 100 Jumping Jacks, 20 total of them being X Jumps.
  • I ran from the top of the stairs to the bottom of the walkway and back up (can you tell it's an incline in the photo?...'cuz it is) and did lunges in place-24 total on each leg, jumping to switch sides after each 8 *I think those in the biz call all the jumping stuff Plyometrics. I'm sure doing things in increments of 8 is improper in "rep" world , but I can't seem to get away from it (this habit is from taking dance classes in my adolescence! Note:  I really want to write that it's from "being a dancer" but that's a bit of a stretch...and sounds a little uppity). I did this part of the "circuit" twice, running back down and up in between Plyometric lunge things.
  • On the third and fourth time running up and down the little hill (now calling it a hill instead of a walkway) I stopped in between for calf raises.  Not sure how many...I just did it until it burned real bad.   
Then I stretched and got excited that the top of my shirt was soaked (the vest added some insulation I'm sure).

I HIGHLY doubt anyone is jotting down this super innovative Building-side workout but maaaaaybe it presents some ideas and inspiration for getting a little physical before or even during work.  There's no reason this can't be accomplished mid-day during an hour lunch too.  I just happen to take 30 minute lunches (and use them for gossiping in the break room).

And of course I could write an entire additional post on the quick and dirty get-ready in the work bathroom...the one thing I will say for now is this:  It would be impossible without a trusty backpack full of tricks.

And now I leave you with some real inspiration...