Monday, March 23, 2015

Random Musings for March

Spring started this weekend; I promptly put away my winter hats & mittens in a burst of spring cleaning and new moon energy on Friday the 20th. (Seriously, the new moon gave me energy!) Of course, the very next day it snowed! But I shouldn’t be surprised – spring is a tease and winter never wants to leave.

  Backing up just a bit, on the weekend of the 6th I drove down to Des Moines, still kind of my home away from home even though I moved away 20 years ago. It will always have a place in my heart and in a three and half to four hour road trip, I can be there. I actually love getting a hotel room by myself and shopping and hanging out with friends I don’t get to see that much. If I can do it every month or so, it works out well.

This time I had breakfast with my friend, Amber...

and lunch with two other friends, Laurie and Coleen.  

These are friends that I can go forever without seeing but when we see other, it is like no time has passed at all. 

I also went shopping and got a pretty good haul from Von Maur and Nordstrom Rack. Of course, we have those same stores in Minneapolis but it is more satisfying to shop away from home sometimes—stores get different merchandise!

I also got my hair done at one of the malls and met such a sweet hairdresser—I love my hair people. I gave him my business card and told him to friend me on Facebook, but so far he hasn’t. I will look him up the next time I am in Des Moines. My business cards have to be good for something besides putting in the fish bowl at Chipotle for a free lunch!

 Then last Saturday, which would be the 14th I went to the roller derby in St. Paul with a bunch of girlfriends. First one of my other hair people (Richard!) put my hair in some really cute side buns. I got the idea from Pinterest.

Then we all went to dinner at Pazzaluna before the roller derby. This is a really great Italian restaurant on St. Peter Street—I totally recommend it for a romantic dinner place. I wouldn’t say the roller derby was exactly my jam (actually I don’t like a lot of sporting events except football; I just go for the social aspect). Fortunately, everyone was ready to leave at halftime too and we went out for one last drink before our cabs and drivers picked us up. It was a super fun night!

That pretty much catches me up on the month of March!


Tuesday, February 24, 2015

10 Questions

I thought this would be a fun post for a Tuesday. I saw these questions on someone else’s blog.

Twitter or Facebook?

Definitely Facebook. It is my favorite social media. While I have actually had a Twitter account for about 7 years, I just find it to be a lot of irrelevant noise where I have to go through and actually find the good things. And whenever I tweet, I feel like I am talking to myself. So definitely Facebook. Sometimes I think people listen to me on there! Sometimes.

Morning Person or Night Owl?

I am kind of both. Sometimes, especially lately, I am up as early as 4:30 a.m. which gives me time to drink coffee, watch the news and/or work out after I let the dogs out and then feed them and the cats. On one hand, I try to be in bed by 10:00 but on the other hand, I have a couple of bad habits….playing games on my phone before I fall asleep and sleeping with my phone under my pillow. My closest friends know they can text me at 2:00 or 3:00 am and I will always answer. Maybe I don’t get enough sleep!

How Do You Drink Coffee?

I drink my coffee black. No cream or sugar. Just black. That way it has no calories. But it does need to be a light roast or flavored.

It is 9:00 p.m. and You Have the House to Yourself – What Do You Do?

Probably on the couch with my dogs and a cat or two, watching TV. Or maybe in bed early with a book. Most likely a glass of wine. This only ever happens when Eric travels for work. I do love having the house to myself!

What Is on your nightstand now?

Eric has the nightstand on his side of the bed so he puts his glasses there and his 2 cell phones. My side of the bed has a poufy thing that I bought at Nordstrom—Violet uses it as a step to climb on the bed. At night, that is where my iPad is and a couple of books that I am reading.

What smell do you love?

I love anything vanilla like my perfume,and chocolate and fruity scents. Also things like rain and wet leaves in the fall.

What smell do you hate?

The smell of meat cooking – gag. #vegetarian

Other than your current home, where you would most like to live?

In Southern California in a beach house so I could hear the ocean every night when I fall asleep. Or Hawaii – that would be good too!

If you could only eat one nationality of food for the rest of your life, which would it be?

This is a difficult one! Mexican or Italian…..I can’t decide.

When you were 6 years old, what did you want to be when you grew up?

Pretty sure a school teacher like my grandma who taught first grade because I always played school with my stuffed animals.


Monday, February 23, 2015

Weekend Review in the Frozen Midwest

Happy Monday! It was a super cold weekend and it continues today. 15 below zero when I woke up this morning at 5:15. But I managed to stay warm with fun plans & trying to avoid the outdoors as much as possible. Friday is my half day at the office and we had just enough snow to make it a very slow commute. I drove 2 and a half hours (I work 27 miles from my office) to work a 2-hour day! Crazy, right? My commute time is normally 40 minutes and sometimes 30, especially on a Friday when traffic is typically lighter. A little snow and ice throws a monkey wrench in that.

  It seemed like I had just gotten to work when it was time to turn around and leave, but actually that is okay because my friend, Heidi, and I had plans to meet for wine at one of our favorite places, Lakes Tavern & Grill in Woodbury. Heidi is one of my best work friends and she just gave her notice this week so I felt like we really needed to catch up on everything that has been going on at our office and in our lives, etc. We had wine and deviled eggs and the time flew. 

 I set a firm time to leave at 3:30 as I wanted to get home to get ready for my Friday night barre burn class. For those who do not know, that is a class that combines yoga, pilates, free weights and the ballet bar and targets muscles with isometric moves. I hope I said that right! I really try to make a point of going on Friday nights. But when I got home I had a voice mail from the yoga studio that the regular teacher was off and now the substitute instructor was out sick so no class. My husband said let’s go out to dinner and celebrate his big work bonus. He gets a huge bonus every February so, yes, we should celebrate.

  But sometimes I am a cheap date so I suggested a new diner that had just opened in Woodbury, Ze’s. I had one of these strawberry malts and some cheesy eggs AND cheesy hashbrowns , and then we went to Best Buy and Target and that was our exciting Friday night!

Saturday morning dawned cold again, and I had set another goal of attending 3 exercise classes at Shape Me Group Fitness in Roseville . 3 of my girlfriends were at the first Zumba class, but they left before Yoga Sculpt. I stuck that one out and it was pretty intense. I had about an hour break before Zumba Toning. In total, I worked out for 3 hours. I probably will not do that again, but I would consider attending both Zumba and Zumba Toning classes in the same day.  I did have a feeling of accomplishment, like the one you get when you do a 25-mile bike ride with lots of hills with a HEAVY bike, say a beach cruiser!

  Sunday I had a doggie birthday party and brunch to attend at my neighbor, Katie’s house. Noodles, my pug, got sent home early for peeing everywhere—it was a little bit embarrassing, but that is what happens when you are the only boy dog in a room full of Chihuahua females. Violet was not that happy to be there either so I took her home next – she is just not social with other dogs. Still it was a fun party with mimosas and eggs and Katie always has great parties!

And that was my weekend and how I stayed warm!


Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Valentine's Day Recap & Other Random Thoughts

Hello and Happy Wednesday. I know some lucky people had a 3-day weekend with President’s Day but I just had my usual 2 and a half. Note to myself to take off President’s Day next year because when Valentine’s Day falls on a weekend, you can make a long weekend out of it and go on a short trip. Next year, Valentine’s Day is on a Sunday. I am already thinking ahead. 

Which reminds me of my Wise Words for Wednesday that I put on Facebook. “Wouldn’t life be better if we all lived in the season and enjoyed the present day to the fullest?” These winter pictures are so pretty and winter can be beautiful, but also miserably cold like today when the wind chill is 30 below zero and my dogs don’t want to be outside for their walks and neither do I! But the point of my Wise Words is sort of Zen – be in the moment no matter what the moment is. I try for that always but my brain often flies ahead of me and I do like to plan for fun future events on my calendar. Just trying to find a balance. That’s Libra.

Right now my three fun things on my calendar are Roxie is coming to stay with me at the end of March. Roxie Fox, the little Shih Tzu I dog-sit for. Then in April Eric and I are going to Seaside, Florida. We are renting a beach cottage. I cannot wait for that!

 In the more distant future, we are going on a road trip over the 4th of July to New Hampshire. I would rather fly, but Eric enticed me by telling me I could take both my dogs and normally only Violet flies with me—Noodles is just a little bit fat and plus I don’t think he would cooperate on a long flight. My in-laws have a great house on the lake and they have a beagle so that will be fun. We often go there for the 4th.

To a lesser extent, my calendar also indicates when Eric is out of town in March-once to San Francisco for a work conference and then to Florida for a guys’ golf vacation. I do like having the house to myself and with 3 cats and 2 dogs, I am never really alone or lonely.

Now for a Valentine’s Day recap – for the first time ever, I told Eric not to get me flowers because it fell on a Saturday and it is really more fun to get them at the office. But really I pointed out that he could take the money he spends on flowers, say $125, and put that towards a hair salon appointment for me . So that is what he did. I secretly did miss getting flowers though. I got him a card and a red velvet donut with chocolate frosting. Fair enough? 

We went to dinner at Bonefish Grill and it was really delicious with a huge array of seafood to choose from. I saw about 6 things I wanted on the menu! My favorite thing was the dessert though—they had a chocolate crème brule that was the best dessert I have ever had. Ever!

The only problem was it was hard to get reservations and the only time I could get was 3:45 p.m. We were eating dinner at 4:00 like senior citizens! Afterwards, Eric drug me to my least favorite place in the world, well next to Home Depot and Golf Galaxy, Costco. Ugh! But it was in the same shopping area as Bonefish so I was being agreeable and he did let me stop at Anthropologie. We got home plenty early so I was able to hang out with friends too.

Oh, and speaking of friends, I also wanted to mention how much fun Friday night was. My neighbor and friend, Katie and another friend, Angie, had a dinner party with a Caribbean theme. It was so much fun and the food was great and we played some, um, “interesting” games! I am lucky to have such a great neighbor. Next weekend, she is having a birthday party for her Chihuahuas with brunch and mimosas. Something else I am looking forward to.

And that is my week so far. Stay warm!

Monday, February 9, 2015

Happy February!

Happy February! 

 Of course, February started with the Super Bowl last Sunday. I was so excited about the game and watched all of the coverage I could during the week leading up to the big game. I stayed home sick two days the last week in January so I spent a lot of time watching the NFL Network. The day of the actual game, I watched all of the pre-game stuff. You should know, the Seahawks are my team and they have been for a very long time—not like a recent thing. Not like when they started getting good. Always. 


So when they lost—I was, let’s say deflated. (Pun intended). It took a few days to get to the point where I could reconcile what happened with that last play. I still have so much love for my team and I respect their coach, Pete Carroll, and I have my favorite players (Richard Sherman and Russell Wilson). Of course, I wanted them to win two Super Bowls in a row - how awesome would that have been? But just the fact that they made it to back-to-back Super Bowls was amazing, and I am excited for next season.

 I wasn’t that sad to say goodbye to January; it does make it just a little bit closer to spring and in the upper Midwest, the winters can be very long. I brought a little spring inside with my bulb garden. 

 This past weekend I went to the Hot Air Affair in my town of Hudson, Wisconsin. We are really known for our hot air balloons and it is very cool to see them up close. Someday, I would love to go up in one. On Saturday night they had what they call a Moonglow where they light up all the balloons and it was so pretty!

 My new favorite drink is the Angry Orchard hard ciders, especially the Green Apple one. It hasn’t replaced white wine and champagne, of course, in the long run, but I am loving it right now. It’s my fling. 

 In the past week, I have read two biographies of Sylvia Plath, Mad Girl’s Love Song and Pain, Parties, Work. She wrote one of my very favorite books, The Bell Jar. Most people know she was a writer and poet and artist who committed suicide at age 30 by sticking her head in an oven. It was 1963; I guess that was a suicide method of choice back then. Her life was fascinating and full of imagination (and mental illness) so I have been caught up in her story. But I have loved The Bell Jar for a long time – it is fiction but it is really based on her own summer interning in NYC at Mademoiselle magazine and her subsequent mental breakdown. It’s a classic.  

 I watched a lot of romantic comedies this weekend, as it is the week of Valentine’s Day & the networks seemed to be showing a lot of that genre. I watched Definitely, Maybe, Valentine’s Day, Ghosts of Girlfriends Past and How To Lose A Guy in 10 Days—all in one weekend. 

 On the other side of the coin, my new favorite show is on Bravo and it is Girlfriend’s Guide to Divorce. I watched several episodes in a row On Demand to get caught up.  And that was my week. Now we have Valentine’s Day to look forward to!

Monday, January 26, 2015

Currently - January 2015 Edition

I really wanted to start blogging again on January 1st but clearly that goal got away from me although I did do a year-end recap last week!   I may have forgotten HOW to even blog, so here is a jump start….

Reading: Confessions of a Wild Child by Jackie Collins; Twisted Sisters by Jen Lancaster; and Still Alice by Lisa Genova. The first two are light reading and the third is definitely more serious as it involves a woman with early onset Alzheimers. I understand it is also a movie. I’ve also been consulting my Little Giant Encyclopedia of the Zodiac & testing it out on my friends. It is amazingly accurate.
 Anyhow yes, I am reading 3 works of fiction. I sort of have a routine where I read the Jackie Collins book on my lunch hour, Twisted Sisters on the elliptical ( I know what you’re thinking - don’t say don’t read and exercise; I have to distract myself and it is better than sitting on the couch!), and Still Alice before I fall asleep at night. Maybe not the best choice for a relaxing night’s sleep. But my books are in constant rotation—there will be another book added into the mix before you know it. I am not sure how I got into reading multiple books. I used to read one book at a time, but I think my brain is just too scattered to be that focused anymore. Multi-task!

Loving: Something as simple as the fact that it is staying light longer and it will be February this weekend. One step closer to spring. Although my dad told me to never wish my life away so I do try to appreciate each day for what it is, even if it is 20 below zero. But hopefully, we are done with that!
Thinking: My mind is constantly thinking; sometimes I really just want to turn it off. I found an app called Smiling Mind, a meditation app for my phone.  

Frustrated: If I am frustrated with anyone, it is myself. Enough said.

Feeling: Positive and hopeful about 2015.   I really am!

Anticipating: Super excited for the Super Bowl. It has my team, the Seahawks, and my husband’s team, the Patriots. I may file for divorce before this week is over—joking!! But we have had some pretty heated arguments about Deflate-Gate.

Watching: I have been going to the movies by myself every Friday afternoon. I have recently seen Big Eyes with Amy Adams (loved) and The Boy Next Door with Jennifer Lopez (held my interest). Not sure about this Friday - maybe the Loft only because I think James Marsden is so cute. As far as TV, not really watching anything except Mad Men on early Sunday mornings. Can’t wait til it comes back for the final episodes in April.

Sad: Nothing can really make me that sad unless I see a sad story about an animal and so I really have to avoid those! Otherwise, I am basically happy and don’t let that much get me down.

Working. At my office job as a receptionist extraordinaire. But I keep thinking I should be doing something more. Personal shopper would be perfect. Or interior designer Or writer.
Grateful: I am grateful for the usual things, great friends, sweet pets and lots of clothes. Kidding. Kind of. No, I really am grateful for my collection of clothes; might as well be honest!

Listening To: Meghan Trainor and Taylor Swift—mainstream pop. But I could go in another direction on a whim.

Wishing: Can’t tell you my wish or it won’t come true! But it’s a good one ;-)

Monday, January 19, 2015

Happy 2015 & A 2014 Recap

Hello, 2015 and goodbye, 2014. I meant to write this a few weeks ago, but better late than never. I wanted to do a big recap of 2014. I thought about it for a while and here are some of my memories. If I took the time, I would have a picture for each month—maybe later! I just want to post something so I can get this blog going again.

January 2014 – My husband, Eric and I rang in the New Year after a fun trip to Seattle at the very tail end of December 2013. I got to go to a Seahawks game and spend some time shopping and dining out in Seattle. We flew back on New Year’s Eve day so we were still at home for the actual ball dropping. I know I was so glad to say goodbye to 2013 and I had big expectations for 2014. I thought it was going to be my year. I was going to make a vision board (fail) and I wore a wish bracelet and all these magical things were supposed to happen. Where did I go wrong?

February – I am someone who remembers everything but I really only remember a few things about February. Seattle winning the Super Bowl! That was awesome and a big highlight. And Valentine’s Day – I remember that, the flowers and dinner. And I won front row (ring side?) tickets to a Minnesota Gophers hockey game on Twitter and we were on TV. I thought that was kind of cool.

March – I did dog sitting for a Shih Tzu named Roxie while her owners (Susan and Anna!)  vacationed in Costa Rica and the whole Midwest froze. I always love when she comes and stays with me, although my dog, Violet, might think differently.

April—Finally April came and we were off to Southern California, a trip we had postponed just a little so I could keep my promise to my friends and take care of their dog. I am that kind of friend. I was soooo happy to be in California. I brought my dog Violet and really in California she can go almost anywhere including Nordstrom. I had a great time and it was so good to leave the winter behind. We were in Los Angeles and San Diego and Newport Beach and really we were in heaven. I met my friend Gina for drinks in our hotel bar – I finally got to meet her – we became friends through blogging and now I am kicking myself because we did not take a picture together! But we did drink a lot of Riesling!

May – I did the Humane Society Walk for Animals with Violet and Noodles and a team I organized at work and we raised money and did good and we did not totally freeze this time. I went down to Northeast Iowa and Eric and I and my brother took my mom out for Mother’s Day, although we had a tough time finding any restaurant open on a Sunday. They seemed to all be closing at 2:00 p.m. We settled on Pizza Hut. This was the month I chopped off about 6 inches of my hair. I am now growing it out long again.

June – I went to Des Moines for a bridal shower and bachelorette party for my friend, Amber! I also started documenting 100 happy days through photographs. Every day I took a picture of something that made me happy.

July – This had the 4th and that is really what sticks in my mind—we went on a dinner boat cruise with a few other couples and watched the fireworks. I also took care of 2 wiener dogs for my friend, Trish. I found $20 in the street after saying I wish I would find money on all of my many walks. That wish came true! I accidentally swung my car door into somebody else’s car in the parking lot of my yoga class and she was dreadful to me. To this day, I hope I don’t run into her at any of my classes. I offered to pay for the damage as who wants yellow paint on black but she would rather be a beyotch about it so whatever. I was also lucky to get a new next door neighbor named Katie who is so much fun and is also now a friend! And last but not least, Amber got married in Northwest Iowa. I definitely got to see a part of Iowa I had never seen before.

August –August had two trips – a big family vacation to Williamsburg, Virginia, and then I also flew out to San Francisco for a few fun days as Eric had a work conference and I had enough frequent flier miles for a free trip. I literally went from one coast to another, both historical places.

September – When I think about September, I mainly remember that after 11 years, Eric finally traded in his old SUV for a new Jeep Cherokee and he also traded in my second car—my backup car. Goodbye Buttercup, the 2006 Chevy Cobalt. Now we are back to a 2-car household. Although in the future, I plan to buy another car and keep my car Daisy around. 3 cars make sense to me! I also started taking an Astrology class every Thursday night. I am fascinated by astrology.

October – What can I say about October except it is my favorite month and my birthday month and this year it was a big, significant birthday. Eric went all out and threw me a surprise party and totally fooled me. And I am a hard person to fool as I am very observant, but I was not expecting any kind of party so therefore I was not at all suspicious—my best friends and co-workers were in on it with my husband, but nobody let anything slip. I thought I was going out to brunch with a few close girlfriends. Then we got to the restaurant and SURPRISE!!!! It was one of the best birthdays ever. October also had two trips – one to Mackinac Island (my favorite place!!) and then out to Boston and Salem. These were both great trips.

November – A concert month. We flew to Vegas for the Britney Spears concert and then the following weekend was the Motley Crue concert here in Minneapolis. At Thanksgiving I was pretty sick, maybe borderline flu but I somehow managed to go out for a meal with my husband but because I was so sick I spaced making reservations at anywhere nice and we wound up at a pretty sub-par restaurant. I am NOT a food snob but this food was pretty bad. I won’t say where! And anyhow this cold/flu hung on for about 10 days into December.

December – One of my favorite times of the year. I love the holiday season. But this year was a little disappointing. I went into December pretty sick with that stupid cold and so I was late in getting my tree and decorations up. My favorite thing about this Christmas season was the cookie exchange my friend Peggy had and my other friends, Donna and Lisa, were there and so it was super fun. I spent the actual Christmas Day at the emergency vet with Violet—her back went out. Only I didn’t know what was wrong with her; I just knew she wasn’t herself. Through the miracle of steroids she is back to herself now but Christmas was sad and we spent 4 hours at the clinic. An emergency vet clinic is a sad place to be on any day, but extra sad at Christmas. Then I personally got sick again a few days after Christmas and by New Year’s I was really sick with another cold/flu type illness. I somehow made it to the Foreigner concert which was how we rang in the New Year.

And now it is 2015. And the Seahawks are going back to the Super Bowl! And I don’t have the same expectations for this year—I will just let things happen and hope they are good, and maybe there are nice surprises ahead of me!

 I applaud you if you read this whole thing! THE END

Thursday, April 3, 2014

Three On Thursday

Three on Thursday – maybe you’ll learn something new about me! Happy Thursday!

Favorite cuisine:
1. Italian
2. Mexican
3. Seafood

Foods I never seem to get sick of:
1. Avocados
2. Cheese
3. Pizza and spaghetti (there’s a 4th- potatoes in all forms!)

Three words I'd use to describe myself:
1. Frivolous
2. Flirty
3. Creative

3 U.S. Cities I would like living in, besides Minneapolis:
1. San Diego
2. Seattle
3. San Francisco

3 places in the U.S. that I haven't visited but would like to:
1. New Orleans
2. Dallas
3. Portland

Favorite forms of exercise:
1. Walking and riding my bike
2. Elliptical
3. Barre burn and Zumba classes

Favorite smells:
1. Chocolate and vanilla candles
2. Anything fruity
3. Outdoor smells like rain, damp fall leaves, night blooming jasmine and the ocean

Big vacations I'd like to take some day:
1. Go back to Hawaii (which is where I got married) and stay at a really fancy hotel
2. Someday I want to spend a whole summer on Mackinac Island and just rent a condo and it would just be me, my pets, a bicycle and fudge – lots of fudge – and I imagine I would read and write a lot 3. I would really like to go to Italy and eat a LOT like in Eat, Pray, Love

  And that is it from me.

Monday, March 10, 2014


I totally dropped the ball on blogging in February and here it is March 10th so I better chop chop! I devised a brief update of what I did last month.

Reading: I read Marilu Henner's book, The Total Memory Makeover. This actress of Taxi fame has a rare kind of memory that is only found in a very small percentage of the population and I was very excited to read her book because people tell me that I have a crazy good memory. However, what she has is called HSAM - Highly Superior Autobiographical Memory and she can remember every single day of her life from 5th grade on (I believe--ha I forgot!). But anyhow her memory is very detailed and goes back to childhood. She can bring up any day from her life from that point forward and tell you what she was wearing, what her hair looked like, what she weighed, what day of the week it was, what the weather was doing. I think that is so fascinating! And, no, my memory is not quite that good but I do have a freaky memory for dates and can often remember what I was wearing, and whenever certain songs come on from the past I can tell you what guy I was dating. Probably not that unusual!

Loving: I was loving all my spring flowers that I brought into my office to brighten up winter - I had a bulb garden, a cyclamen and the bouquet of flowers I got for Valentine's Day. They have since all died of course. :-(

Thinking: Oh, definitely thinking I was tired of winter especially as we ended up with 60 inches of snow and 50 days below zero. Ugh!!

Feeling: See above! Feeling tired of winter! And it is not that I don't like winter but enough is enough and even people who love winter would be tired of this! I had some really long commutes of 3 hours where I may as well have lived in my car.

Anticipating: My vacation to Southern California beginning April 4th! And also dog sitting Roxie, my favorite little Shih Tzu.

Inspired By: My friends! Everyone is good at something and everyone has gifts. I appreciate all my friends!

Watching: More like NOT watching the Winter Olympics or the Walking Dead. I don't have any favorite shows right now and didn't really watch a lot of TV in February.

Sad: I don't think anything made me too sad in February as I flipped back through my calendar for reminders--except the anniversary of my dad's death on Feburary 12th. I still miss him of course, so yes, that was actually a sad day. Gone 12 years now....

Working: Working and working out! Still working my 4 and a half days a week as a receptionst at an upscale bath and body company and I have to add in working out - barre burn and zumba classes and really doing the elliptical almost every day.

Grateful: I have a lot to be grateful for - wonderful friends, adorable pets, a good job, a nice house, a really nice car, a closet full of clothes, a husband who would do anything for me, good health, not a lot of REAL worries. I try to remind myself of that every day!

Listening: I listened to a lot of Miley Cyrus and Robin Thicke. I am open to listening to something new! Any suggestions?

Wishing: Oh, I wished for a lot of things. None of which have come true - YET. So that's it for February in a nutshell. In the midst of March now and need to get better at blogging.

I still have NOT made my vision board yet and that was going to be my big project for January. Maybe that is why my wishes are not coming true! :-)

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Looking Forward...

Last week, I talked about living in the moment which I think is a very advisable (and admirable) way to live, but I am not going to lie – I also like having things to look forward to – vacations, holidays, a new book or movie, a package in the mail (on-line shopping!), trying a new restaurant with friends, etc.

Some of my blogging friends have been doing “Looking Forward” posts so I am taking a page from their book. Here is what I am looking forward to:

This Weekend… The Super Bowl, of course! It’s my team, the Seahawks, and really except for a Super Bowl party a few years ago, this is the most excited I have been about the Super Bowl in a long time. Even the half time acts are ones I am excited about – Bruno Mars and Red Hot Chili Peppers! Go Seahawks! Sidebar: I ordered TWO shirts for the game—I really hope one of them shows up, but both would be nice. I can wear one during the first half, and the other during the second half.

NEXT MONTH…. I have to say Valentine’s Day. I do like getting a big bouquet from my husband. It is one of the holidays where he spares no expense on my flowers. And I will find a fun restaurant to go to. I also have another idea that we carried out last year—a bunch of my girlfriends and I did a Girls Valentine’s Day dinner beforehand. Yes, I really went to two dinners last year. And as for the FOLLOWING month, March (ugh, I don’t really like that month but we won’t go into that) I have things to look forward to as well—a trip to California (either March or April) and also I am going to be dog sitting for a Shih Tzu named Roxie. I get to take care of her a lot but it has been awhile. I think I get her for 10 whole days this time. Sorry, Violet.

This summer….So excited to see my friend, Amber, get married in Spencer, Iowa on July 19th! She has already shared a photo of her dress with me. I am just very happy for her. I love summer too for the trips we go on – usually Mackinac Island or Door County. But no details yet! Summer sounds good right about now.

THIS YEAR … This is a big one – I am going to Paris for my birthday in October!! More to come on that big event.

What about you? What are you looking forward to? Please leave me a comment!

Thursday, January 23, 2014

Living In The Polar Vortex Moment


I haven’t blogged in a few weeks – it was my original intention to do it every week, but oh, well, things don’t always go as planned! Plan B!

I have been busy trying to stay warm in this impossibly cold weather. I can’t count the days that have been way below zero at night and then never even go above zero during the daytime. It was during all this that first our furnace went out and then our washing machine. And it happens while my husband is traveling for the bank – first Detroit one week, then Denver the following week and then Detroit again for another week. That left me to deal with the repairmen – and Noodles, my Pug. He enjoys hanging out with the repairmen. He helps. Okay, gets in their way!

Hi, Noodles!!

I have also been taking 4 exercise classes a week – Zumba toning on Tuesday night, Barre Burn on Friday night, regular Zumba on Saturday morning and Barre Burn again on Sunday afternoon. And I still try to do the elliptical (Le Elliptical!) every day for 30 to 40 minutes. When nice weather comes back, I can add walking and riding my bike to the mix – but in the meantime, I really have to focus on my classes to keep in shape.

We had our book club this month – the little group that my pal, Heidi and I started last spring – Chick Lit and Cocktails. I am actually now in 3 book clubs but this one came about because one of my book clubs tends to go very serious and the other one is in Des Moines so I can’t always drive down there with my schedule. I wanted this book club to be closer (obviously!) and also more fun, light and fluffy books. We met at Crave at the Mall of America but due to the weather only half of us made it but it was still fun. We will try again in March!

One other exciting thing happened in January and that is that my favorite football team, the Seattle Seahawks, are going to the Super Bowl! That is actually super exciting. I just saw them play a few weeks ago on Dec. 29th when I was in Seattle and I had a good feeling then. I have ordered my Russell Wilson #3 football jersey so I have appropriate attire for the game on February 2nd!

The dogs and I took a little road trip to Iowa this week on MLK Day. It is just nice to get away and stay in a hotel and have wine and answer to no one. Of course, the weather down there was no better. I fantasize about getting in my yellow Eclipse, Daisy, with my 2 dogs and driving across the country to California. I am serious!

So anyhow it has been extremely cold and snowy but it is January in the upper Midwest and I still try to appreciate it for what it is. Like these super cute snowmen in my neighborhood.

Someone is creative!

And watching my bulb garden(s) grow and eventually bloom. I have 2 – one for home and one for my office.

Someday We Will Bloom!

 Spring will eventually come. I am just trying to enjoy the here and now and not project myself too far in the future .  Live for the moment.

By the way, I am on Instagram as lesli13 – I post equally exciting photos as these! ;-)

Happy January!

Thursday, January 9, 2014

Make A Wish!

I don’t make New Year’s resolutions. But I do make New Year’s Wishes!

One of the best ways to make a wish—A Wishing Jar! Just find an old Mason Jar to decorate and fill with your wishes—big and small. At the end of the year, see which ones have come true.

Another way to make a wish—a wishing bracelet. The idea behind the bracelet is to make a wish when you tie it on – when the bracelet breaks or falls off, your wish is ready to come true! You can find them on Etsy.

On the subject of wishes and resolutions even, the New Year is a great time to make a Vision Board and fill it with all the things you would like to do and have in the coming year. I am going to make a vision board this weekend. Stay tuned!

Finally, similar to the Wishing Jar is the Happiness Jar—you can fill it with the little things that make you happy during the year. Just write them down on a slip of paper and then on New Year’s Eve you can go through and remember all the things that made you happy.

Those are my thoughts for today! Happy New Year!

Thursday, January 2, 2014

2013 - A Little Recap

I feel bad to even say this but 2013 was NOT the best year of my life. I always start my New Years off with lots of hope and optimism and I did the same for 2013. But right off the bat something was just “off”. I won’t get into details but let’s just say I learned some valuable lessons along the way and leave it at that.

I would rather focus on the positive – I had some really fun trips, twice to Door County, Wisconsin, and once to Mackinac Island, Michigan; to New Hampshire for the 4th of July, an early birthday trip to Las Vegas in September to see Motley Crue, and a trip to end the year in Seattle to see my football team, the Seahawks.

 I saw one of my favorite bands, LA Guns, not once but twice!

  I also completed a 27-mile bike ride in September which might not sound like much to some, but I did it on a really heavy beach cruiser style bike while everyone else, the professional riders, had their skinny-tired, stream-lined bikes. I am glad I did it and I really pushed myself. There were lots of hills – much like in my real life this year! But sooner or later, you get to cruise down the hills, too!

I also was the chair person of an Animal Walk that raised over $3,000 for Secondhand Hounds – so I did good for the animals, too!

  Everything that was good about 2012 (now that was a great year!) was still in my life in 2013 and I need to appreciate that fact, and I do! 2013 was the year I really expressed gratitude and counted my blessings of which I have many.

  But I am very ready to move forward in this New Year, 2014, and to be better about documenting my life through my blog and also my personal writing and photographs.