- I will watch what I eat and track it at least 6 days a week.
- I will exercise and work exercise into my daily habits in some form or another.
- I will do work I truly love.
- I will blog at least 3 times a week.
- I will write for at least an hour a week.
Friday, December 31, 2010
Thursday, December 30, 2010
Wednesday, December 29, 2010
Monday, December 27, 2010
Friday, December 24, 2010
Thursday, December 23, 2010
Wednesday, December 22, 2010
Tuesday, December 21, 2010
- There's no reason to stop short in a parking garage. Seriously, if there's a sign that says there are 2 spaces on level 1 and 251 on Level Two, just drive on up. Don't circle level one and then stop short in front of the cute little Sentra behind you because you see someone with brake lights on. There are elevators, so there's really no chance of you having to exert yourself any more by parking on level 2. Yes, gray Mercedes SUV, I'm talking to you.
- You can't circumvent a line at the cash register by pretending you don't see the partitioned off line. Well, I guess you can try, but expect to be yelled at by the 15-20 (if you're lucky--50-60 if you're not) people waiting in front of you. You can try pretending like you don't speak English, but the lady speaking Korean behind me seemed to understand the concept.
- Candy Canes have calories. I personally think its bullshit that ANYTHING mint has calories. Or gum. Anything that's used to freshen your breath--even a candy cane--should be a free pass. I think that's actually in the Bill of Rights near the life and liberty part.
- I don't know why Parking Garages have attendants. There's a lady that works at the parking garage at the Target I go to and literally ALL she does is wave her arms at the cars. She doesn't vary the wave or use the wave to direct cars in the direction of empty spaces. She's literally waving them along. I think the lines and arrows painted on the floor and signs are enough for me.
Monday, December 20, 2010
Sunday, December 19, 2010
It started raining yesterday in LA. Not that rain is exceptionally noteworthy, but it was the first overcast day since we moved here. And the sprinkles started and then some heavy rain, but nothing I'd consider a downpour or anything of that nature. '
Friday, December 17, 2010
Tuesday, December 14, 2010
Saturday, December 11, 2010
Tuesday, December 07, 2010
Monday, December 06, 2010
Friday, December 03, 2010
Thursday, December 02, 2010
Tuesday, November 30, 2010
Saturday, November 27, 2010
Thursday, November 25, 2010
Tuesday, November 23, 2010
Today wasn't too bad. The cats were great. Some meows when we would stop, but never for longer than 5 minutes. The penske wasn't too bad to drive. Clocked up to 75 mph. The worst part of the day with the cats was in the hotel. Chef and I spent 20 minutes looking for Mila in the room. She hadn't snuck out (or so we thought) but there wasn't any place else for her to hide. So we went to the front desk to see if they'd seen a cat scurry out of our room. They had not. I just about start crying when I reach under the air conditioner and feel fur. It was a huge sense of relief.
So far little rock sucks. None of the pizza places that were top rated and listed as "delivery" in urban spoon actually delivered. So we opted for Pizza Hut. Which delivered us the wrong order so they had to go back and remake our pizza. The wifi doesn't work so I'm blogging from my phone. But all in all it's been smooth.
Next stop: Amarillo, TX. Going to get some steak but not do the steak challenge. Also we downloaded the roadside America app to hit some quirky spots along the way ( thanks for the tip, Greg). Cadillac ranch, anyone?
Thursday, November 18, 2010
Saturday, November 13, 2010
Friday, November 12, 2010
Wednesday, November 10, 2010
- Kirk's homosexuality ostracizing him. We get it. It was done in Dawson's Creek. And One Tree Hill. And 90210. And every other teen based drama on television in the last 20 years. Add something new to the discussion, please.
- Rachel being an overzealous drama queen. Okay, really it's just all of the characters beginning to be caricatures of themselves. They've all veered a little too far forward from real people they seemed to represent.
- Nothing happening. Think about the story lines this season. Have any of them actually moved forward? Remember last season? Still was happening every episode. Will's wife was paying Quinn for her baby. Will and Emma's sparking romance. An almost wedding. There were lots of things. Not just breaking into song because it's "Boys vs. Girls" week.
- Lastly, I'm tired of Lea Michele. I saw the girl on Conan and have seen her do several interviews. She is talented, but the girl needs to get a grip on reality. Here's what I'd tell her: "You are not fascinating. Not everything you do or that is done relating to you is worthy of adulation or even notice. You have a good voice. You play a part well. You are not the cure to cancer. "
Friday, November 05, 2010
I still have about two weeks worth left which I intend on keeping for emergencies, but thought it was time while I was unemployed and my day's work didn't depend on my night's sleep to try and ween myself off of it. The first night was rough. It took me about two hours of lounging in bed to feel drowsy. Then it took me all of two hours to wake back up. It was up and down for the next 6 hours until I had declared it time to give up the fight.
Night two was a different story. Still very much in short spurts, but then longer stretches, as if to give my unconscious self some hope. But one main difference between this night and probably 5 months of nights before: I had a dream. Not the Martin Luther King Jr. kind, but a vivid dance in between my imagination and subconscious. It was glorious. I remembered it. And some day, in some form, I'll share it, but not here.
The next night I slept longer and harder and dreamed more scenes. And slowly the dreams began to take over my thinking during my waking hours. The time I spent thinking about strategy and reports and accounts has in the last week been used to day dream. And I realized how much I missed it. Thinking without purpose or hindrance.
Last week I went with my friend Greg to see an author named Aimee Bender. I was late, but she was wonderful and as she got to the question and answer section, she became even more endearing. If you've been to a Q and A with people who are fans, you know that the questions can become more diatribes on the person's admiration than an actual question (for example, one question to Ms. Bender when boiled down to logic this night was "How do you put words together?". Seriously.) But one of those questions, and I frankly can't remember which one, led to Ms. Bender answering with "Sometimes it's good to be bored. Sometimes those crazy thoughts that we all have as humans are meant to peek through." Or something to that nature. I'm clearly paraphrasing, but the gist of the sentiment has stuck with me this week.
It made me realize something: Whether it was during the day time or night time or any time in between, I've missed dreaming. And I'm happy to be doing it again.
Thursday, November 04, 2010
Tuesday, November 02, 2010
So today Chef and I went to Community Day at Cheekwood to check out the Chihuly exhibit. Dale Chihuly is an artist, primarily a glassblower, who does these huge, beautiful installations. Cheekwood is the botanical gardens in Nashville. That should catch up those who have not heard of one or the other or both of those. Oh and Community Day means it was free to get in. We left the house around 10:15, got into the long line of cars to get into Cheekwood at 11:30 and actually walked through the museum gates at 10:55. There were that many people there. Mostly at home mothers and the eldery (it is the middle of the week, after all), but school was out because it is election day and there's nothing more creepy than exposing our children to the myriad of people who actually take part in democracy. That's just too big of a risk for the schools.
So, we got some sandwiches and sat amongst the trees and art in the beautiful weather and chuckled at the idiots who had to work today. Sure, a paycheck is nice, but so is Chihuly with a loved one. We meandered through the exhibit, found every piece and about 2 hours later were firmly planted at Sweet Cece's to get some frozen yogurt with fruity pebbles on top--because I've made Chef a believer of fruity pebbles as a topping.
Now I'm hanging out and blogging while I wait for my boot camp to start at 5 p.m. and then its home for a quick shower and heading to Patterson House for a round of drinks (handcrafted cocktails to be exact) as the perfect cap to this fine day.
Sunday, October 17, 2010
Okay, not it's not "you" it's me. I'm lazy. At least I was. I started running again on weekends yesterday morning because if I don't get up and do SOMETHING, then I don't get up to do anything. And once I was up, I vacuumed, paid bills, did some organizing and other household chores. It inspired me to get up again on Sunday and do a separate set of chores (and even a little work) so that I didn't feel like a complete slob all day. Frankly, I need to be honest and say that I might not have been as productive all Sunday if the Colts game hadn't been the Sunday night one.
I not only did household chores, but also some baking. A Heath Cheesecake for Chef (found the recipe in my mom's old recipe box) and some Hungry Girl Death by Chocolate cupcakes for me. I've also started REALLY watching my calories again. Not just pretending like I have the past week.
I stopped physically writing down my calories (that's what worked for me the first go-around) and started using an app for my iPhone. It's called My Fitness Pal and it's not that much different than a lot of other tracking sites. It's free and all that. But what I love about it is the number of food items that it has in its database to log. For example, it doesn't just have coconut creme yogurt, but KROGER brand coconut creme yogurt. Today I tossed in "hungry girl" as a search and it had the nutritional information for A LOT of her most used recipes including the death by chocolate cupcakes that I made. It makes logging calories and exercise take about 30 seconds. I love it.
So, now that I've recognized that I've been lazy and that I am so much happy when I'm not lazy, it's time to keep the momentum going. Maybe I should go back to running or walking twice a day. . . .
Tuesday, October 12, 2010
We decided to divide and conquer for the most part so that we didn't end up getting sick like so many others. It's pretty easy to go from a good time to the vomiting with just one wrong calculation of fritters. I actually ate all or some of the following items: Chicken and Dumplings, corn fritters, Stromboli, fried macaroni & cheese, lemon shake-up, and banana fritters. It sounds like a lot, but that's actually not too bad. The only huge disappointment was the weak, microwaved Stromboli by the Young Democrats booth.
While those are some of the less weird items, there were a few items that were new (or oldies but goodies) that those not from Evansville find odd. Here's a few:
- Brain Sandwich (a LONG time festival favorite)
- Fried Oreos & Fried Twinkies
- Dirty Diaper (a pumpkin turnover)
- Pigeon Poop (I have no idea, but calling things something related to excrement tends to be a festival tradition)
- Gumbo, shrimp and other seafood (it's best to avoid as Indiana is a land locked state)
- Pronto Pups (similar to a corn dog, but not corn related at all)
- Orange Shake-ups
- Homemade potato chips
- Yoohoo Shakes
- And more. . . .
While the food was pretty good--actually probably better than I remember--it was more awesome to spend time with my girls. We hung out all day and then headed back home on Sunday. I was also lucky enough to squeeze a quick visit in with my dad and my mom's side of the family.
The only think that sucks about the trip was the mold. There's a mold in southern Indiana that makes me miserable if I end up spending more than 24 hours in the area. I'm now still taking Claritin D and sounding like a congested crazy person. In fact, it's been three days now, so I'm beginning to wonder if I'm actually not only fighting allergies but also sickness. I have gone to bed at about 8:30 the last two nights.
No matter what if I had to do it again, I would gladly do it to see my friends and family.
Sunday, October 03, 2010
But I digress. As I all really did was wake up early, walk around the field for hours on end to help and work with my volunteers. The Heart Walk team, who put in hundreds of hours and a year's worth of work, did a wonderful job. The event has really evolved in the last 9 years. From a "grab your yogurt and walk for 30 minutes" to a full fledged event with lots of interactive booths that truly display the mission of the American Heart Association.
It's also what I call the fastest three hours around. The walkers whoosh in and then the walkers leave and then the walkers come back for turkey dogs and it's done. What took a day to put up, takes minutes to take down, and then it's off for a cleebratory beer. It's a tiring day, but also a fun one. There are few times of year where you get to see nearly all of the people who you work with all year in one place. Plus you get to hear stories of survivors, people who've lost loved ones and those who are supporting survivors. It's just a fun day and if you haven't been--either in Nashville or wherever you are, I encourage you to do so. In fact, there's a walk in Rutherford County on November 7th if you want to go :) (www.rutherfordheartwalk.org).
Wednesday, September 29, 2010
It all started about two weeks ago in Fort Walton Beach, FL. We were there for a brief stop as Patrick's Grammie had passed away. I have to take a moment and say how truly awesome Grammie was. She literally opened her arms to me the first time I walked through the door and was one of the best pen pals I ever had. I also know she was a fantastic mother and grandmother that is sorely missed.
Anyway, while in Florida my work cell started freaking out on me. . . again. So I was relying on my personal cell phone which was literally the smallest, cheapest flip phone Verizon had to offer. I still contend that no one was meant to text 26 letters with the use of only 9 keys. It's against nature. It also made the texting experience suck and I began to realize just how useless my personal cell was.
The trouble with the work cell continued and finally culminated in the cell phone crashing while I was in Evansville this past weekend for the annual Komen Walk. It was a great day where I got to see some of my cousins and aunts, and of course had a very memorable day with my stepdad Jack and his fiance Sara. It's always a great experience and would've been perfect except that literally all my contacts, email and other relevant information was gone from my work cell. It's super awkard when someone texts you and you don't have any contacts so you know it's from Indiana and you assume it's a family member, but really you're flying in the dark.
So after two days with a personal phone that didn't work and a work cell that was going nuts for the 5th time, I decided that I couldn't wait 6 more months to upgrade my phone. Chef did the research and it was easy enough for us to switch over to AT&T (who thankfully have dropped Luke Wilson as their spokesperson--at least for now) and get iPhones. We both really hate lining Steve Jobs's pockets, but really like being able to communicate without punching 100 keys to spell two words.
So, two weeks and we've had two trips to our hometowns--both in remembrance of someone. And iPhones. Now you're caught up.
Tuesday, September 14, 2010
But I digress. Grammie was a wonderful, honest, insightful woman and I'm sad that I only got to know her for a short time. And I'm really sad that Chef has to go to Fort Walton Beach for that reason and not some happier occasion.
We are heading out tomorrow for funeral and showing. Of course it didn't dawn on us until after the shock set in that Chef has absolutely nothing to wear. I mean, his name is "Chef'" for now and he has things suitable for a Chef to be wearing. When he's officially "Legal Eagle" in the future, I'm positive the nice clothes won't give us a second thought, but until then. Well, let's just say that a trip to the mall was in order. He successfully purchased dress slacks (I love the word slacks in the right context--in the wrong context it just sounds very 1980s), a gray dress shirt, a tie, socks, a belt and shoes. Seriously, I felt bad that I've been ignoring his cries for clothing as it was pretty obvious which of us is neglected.
The mall trip was my second as the first trip was made a few hours earlier. I had the afternoon off to celebrate our office's success while some of my co-workers were celebrating at an official gathering in Atlanta. (I have to say that I think I may have come out ahead on this one. . . ). While sometimes it may seem like my changes are random, know that I have usually spent at least a couple of hours internalizing and researching them before I actually pull the trigger.
So yesterday I pulled the trigger and became a brunette. Really brunette. Anne Hathaway was my celebrity color trigger. Her and that girl from Twilight Ashley Greene. I actually like it. It makes me eyes stand out a little more. I probably won't keep it forever, but it's fun to do something different. Pictures will be posted when I have a picture that looks decent and not hideous.
Sunday, September 12, 2010
Friday, September 10, 2010
Tuesday, September 07, 2010
Monday, September 06, 2010
Friday, September 03, 2010
Sunday, August 29, 2010
Tuesday, August 24, 2010
Sunday, August 22, 2010
- Brussels Sprouts: Toss 'em in olive oil, salt and pepper and roast those bad boys until slightly crispy. Delish.
- Water: clearly didn't discover this, but actually start drinking it. Not until after a nurse was taking my blood on a finger prick and said "I can tell you don't drink a lot of water because it's taking forever to get a dot of blood." I don't know if that's true or not, but it did make me imagine that my blood was made up of Diet Coke.
- Sushi: I was just too chicken and a little too country to have tried this without Chef there to navigate the menu.
- Jogging: Who knew? I could jog for about two miles a day and actually enjoy it. And still do it more than two years later.
- Bellini's: I'm not much on peach, but add some champagne and you've got a winner. Although Chef made this, it's not too big of a stretch to make me like an alcoholic drink.
- Yoga: Okay, I tried it more than 5 years ago, but that experience did not make me want to try again. Mostly because I apparently got a little too relaxed during my first time. Now, I enjoy the lengthy stretching without self-consciousness.
- Fried Green Tomatoes: I normally hate tomatoes, but this just goes to show that you can fry anything and I'll eat it.
- Cats: Three years ago it took Chef about 6 months of leaving pictures of tiny little kittens on our computer desktop before I finally caved and said we could get one. I was determined to be a dog person. Turns out I'm a pet person. Obviously.
Tuesday, August 17, 2010
"Hello, Ashley? This is Chastity from Westmont apartments. I'm calling to see why you haven't paid your rent this month."
Me: We paid our rent this month.
C: I'm showing that your rent was due on the first and you haven't paid it.
Me (scrambling to my computer to fervishly sign in to my online banking): Hold on for a second. Actually, I did pay. My bank account shows that you all cashed my check on August 4th for the amount of XXX. The account number on the back of the check that you endorsed is XXXXXX.
C: Oh, it's not showing up in our system. There must be a computer error that shows your rent being due twice in a month. I'll call IT and have them fix it.
End of phone call.
As I was sitting there with my hear pounding, I started to get fired up. We have never been late in paying our rent in the 6 years that Chef and I have lived together. Six years in one place. Never late. But the company calls us 16 days past the rent day and 12 days after the late fee day to accuse us of not paying. And there's no "I'm so sorry for this" or any kind of apology. Nothing. So now I'm fired up and I can't let it go. So I wait two hours and then call her back to express how disappointed I was in how the situation was handled and it just made it worse. Here's how that conversation went:
C:Westmont Properties, this is Chastity.
Me: Chastity, this is Ashley LAST NAME calling in regards to my rent payment.
C: Now which apartment are you in again? I've made a lot of calls today.
Me: Apartment XXX in XXXX complex.
C: Oh, right with the computer error.
Me: Yes, that was me. I was just calling to let you know that I'm disappointed in how the situation was handled.
C: Excuse me?
Me: I know that you are probably making a lot of calls concerning late rent but I am hurt that we've been tenants for more than 6 years, hadn't missed a payment and weren't treated better.
C: I don't know what to say. I mean, I said I was sorry. It was a computer error. And, you say that I make a lot of late rent calls, but I really don't. So I don't know what you want me to say.
Me: Actually, you didn't say you were sorry. That's why I was calling you back.
C: Well, I am sorry and now I've said it three times in this call.
Me: I'm disappointed in the manner and tone with which you made the call.
C: I am honestly shocked because I didn't have any tone with your call. It was a computer error and we fixed it. I'm sorry. What more do you want? I didn't yell or scream or anything.
Me: I'm hoping you wouldn't ever yell or scream at a tenant. I guess I wanted a little courtesy for having paid consistently on time and for an apology.
C: I've said I'm sorry.
Me: Fine. Goodbye.
The above is why we will not be renewing our lease at this place. And why if you rent in Nashville, I would NOT recommend any place managed by Westmont Properties.