Five Things I’ve Learned This Week

This week has been nuts. Two off-site all-day work meetings, a trip to the DMV, and unpacking like crazy… it feels a bit incessant and out-of-control. The good thing is that the more I do now, the less I have to do later, and soon enough it will be all done and we can go on living instead of doing-doing-doing! Also, I’ve take the time not not just breeze through the craziness; instead, I’ve taken note of some important things.

  • I need my GPS when going to work, even though it was just my 3rd week of work! It’s a well-known fact that I have a shitty sense of direction. My boyfriend’s GPS has been my best friend for years, but with his maps being out of date, it has proven to be pretty detrimental to my acquaintance with new surroundings. What should have been a 15 minute drive home one day turned into a half hour drive because I tried doing it on my own, then put the GPS on when I was lost, only to find I had gone two miles in the complete opposite direction! Learning point: keep using the GPS for a while!
  • Beer can be dinner, even if it’s not paleo. At a going away happy-hour earlier this week, I had a beer with coworkers. I had only planned on having that one beer, then having some chicken soup for my meal as to avoid any excessive carb intake that night. Well, the man of the hour bought a round… then another round… so, dinner that night was four Corona Lights. Whoops! However, ever since I’ve been adding a few more carbs to my diet (still not eating bread, pasta, sugar, corn, etc. for now) my body has “regulated” itself, if you catch my drift. So, a beer dinner wasn’t all that bad – I felt great that night and the next day, in fact! As a friend of mine told me: “Beer is just liquid bread.”
  • Costco is great and dangerous. We finally got a Costco membership and used it this morning. I had a list, but like all lists, it wasn’t something that was easily followed! Case and point: the first thing we put in our cart was a new GPS for myself (so my boyfriend can get back his aforementioned outdated one and I have more of a hope not to get lost!), which was definitely not on our list! In the end, we bought about 5 or 6 things that weren’t on our list and spent $420.00 (on the dot!). That number is a bit “ouch!”-worthy, but we won’t have to buy toilet paper, paper towels, aluminum foil, plastic wrap, pasta (for the boy), chicken breasts, Ziplok bags, or spices for a really, really long time! The deals are just incredible! Paper goods were marginally a good deal, but some of the other things were amazing. A huge jar of organic Saigon Cinnamon for $4.79 when I spent that much on a jar 1/4 the size in the store! Over 50 fluid ounces of organic extra virgin olive oil for $9.99 when I spent over $11 on a 20 ounce bottle of non-organic EVOO at the grocery store last time! But, self-control is hard. Next time, we may not be able to say no to the 80″ flat-screen TV…
  • Laughter is great medicine. Sorry for the cliche, but it’s true. This week was pretty long, but things like this video brightened it up when things got tough:

  • Good things come to those who wait… and wait… and wait… FINALLY the boyfriend has a job interview! It’s been just over a month since he graduated with his masters degree, and about two months or so since he first started sending resumes out, but at long last, someone realized how awesome he is. Hopefully this place likes him and he likes them. Fingers will remain crossed all week!

Life is crazy, isn’t it? I can’t wait for everything to simmer down!

Why So Blue?

I knew that taking a day off of work in order to go to the DMV, unpack the remaining items from our PODS unit, and unpack/organize a bit wouldn’t exactly be a piece of cake, but it was definitely not an enjoyable day off.

The morning trip to the DMV started off as expected: stood in a long-ass line with 80 people in front of us. Sat in uncomfortable benches while we waited for our alphanumeric identifier to be called. (Of course the boyfriend was done way before I even got called up since he only needed a new license, not a car registration.)

Then, my stupidity showed.

I pride myself on being a list-maker and calendar-lover. I track everything so I know what needs to be done when and by whom; however, I’ve been falling off the wagon lately and it’s been biting me in the ass as a result! After sitting for an hour in the uncomfortable benches of the DMV, I was only a few numbers away from being called. Hooray! I glanced at my checklist (for the first time that morning)… and realized that I forgot my car’s title in my lock-box at home.

The boy rushed home for me to get it. A girl about my age was sitting in front of me and turned around to tell me that she did the same thing yesterday and reminded me how lucky I am to have my boyfriend here to help. (Amen!) In the end, my number was called, and I traded with the girl in front of me. By the time the boyfriend returned with my title, there were about 5 people in line in front of me so we spent another 20 minutes or so sitting uncomfortably, playing crossword puzzles.

By 10:40am (mind you, we arrived at 9:05am), I got my license and my new plates, which means one thing: I’m officially a Masshole! (Even so… GO GIANTS!) We had a celebratory brunch at my new favorite restaurant while my car got its state inspection so that we could be fueled up and ready to unpack when we got home.

And so we did.

It’s not even close to being completely done, but the place is coming along nicely. Bottom line: we now sit on a sofa, eat at a table, and sleep on a mattress and box spring… at last! The kitchen was my responsibility, of course, as it is my domain! Although frustrated at the lack of a pantry, I think I’m doing okay so far. In the absence of photos of the progression of the unpacking, I will simply share my first creation in my new wannabe-organized kitchen.

WHY-SO-BLUE SMOOTHIE
Yields one very thick 16-ounce smoothie full of nutrition.

  • 3/4 cup frozen blueberries
  • 1 heaping tablespoon of coconut cream (the solid part of coconut milk)
  • 1 big leaf of kale, hard rib removed
  • 1/4 cup coconut water
  • Roughly 1 cup of unsweetened almond milk

I have a personal smoothie maker (a cheap-o version of a Magic Bullet), but you can make it in a large blender if that’s all you have. (Hell, if you have my dream-machine — Vitamix! — your smoothie will lack the bits of blueberry skin like mine had! Color me jealous!)

Simply add the ingredients to your blender with the berries and kale closest to the blade. Blend until smooth, adding more coconut water or almond milk if it is too thick (but is there really such a thing??). Serve immediately.

I may not be following such a strict paleo diet as I was in week one (and as a result, my tummy troubles are gone!) but this recipe just so happens to be friendly to those cavemen out there!

Hopefully the next photo of my kitchen will be of something pretty, shiny, clean, and organized! (Maybe a craft that I’ve done or something… hint-hint…)

Re-Moving

Moving from [smelly] temporary housing to our new apartment isn’t the “re-moving” I’m talking about: I’m back in action on my original (uh, sort of…) big blog: [blank] this!

One thing that will be interesting is that now that I’ve ditched the idea of being mostly-vegan (thank you, Wheat Belly Blog… and, don’t hate me, vegans!) I’ve added a new category: eat this PALEO.

I’m not 100% paleo (yet), but I’m definitely close to it. The hardest things for me to limit and eventually give up at this point are:

  • Cheese
  • Ice cream
  • Abundant fruit
  • Corn chips
  • Beans

I was pretty proud of myself yesterday, eating 100% paleo during the work day, but once we went to a Mexican restaurant for dinner, I started nomming down on some corn chips. I was so hungry, I couldn’t resist. When my grilled pork arrived, it was mostly fat and the little meat I got didn’t fill me. I wasn’t going to eat the rice or beans, but I was still so starving I ended up eating the whole cup of rice and splatter of refried beans that accompanied my meat.

But, I was still hungry!

That meant one thing: ice cream.

I don’t consider the day ruined; I’m still learning. Tonight I’ll opt to cook myself dinner instead of eating out again! Hah!

T-Minus 18 Days

For the first time in my [albeit somewhat short] professional career, I’m putting in my 2-weeks notice. Well, I’m not doing it today (although I’d like to!); rather, I’m doing so on Tuesday – the day I get back from a 3-day Memorial Day weekend.

It’s so strange. I never feel like I’m one of those golden, indispensable employees-of-the-month types, but I am happy to say that I received job offers from the only two jobs I interviewed for. (Sure, I applied to over 2 dozen jobs and only ended up with 2 interviews… but I choose to ignore that statistic!) I don’t mean to sound pompous, but I’m allowed to be proud of myself once in a while! (Believe me, it doesn’t happen often.) I’m sort of in-demand!

Well, this whole thing is the motivation to start this blog. I’ve had so many other blogs about specific things (usually food or fitness) but this time I’m going to talk about one thing: life. Mine is changing right now for the gazillionth time, and that’s what makes life so interesting: every day is like Day One.

I’m growing increasingly nervous about giving my two-weeks notice; as I mentioned, I’ve never had to do this kind of thing before. I’ve left jobs, but not like this. Leaving my high school Dunkin Donuts job when I was leaving for college doesn’t even compare to this.

I’m told that my work is difficult and important, although I’m not entirely convinced that it is. Regardless, I do have lots of it to do, which will all be handed off to my two unsuspecting coworkers and my very, very unsuspecting supervisor in a mere 18 days. (I feel very bad for the the former… not so much for the latter… but I’ll get into that in a future post, I’m sure.)

18 days. That’s when I will be “escorted” out of the building. (They apparently have to do that here, and I’m not entirely sure why.) I’ll hand in my badge and be done with this place. It’s not all that bad… well, at least it wasn’t until about 5 months ago… but, again, I’ll get into that in a future post!

There is so much to do in the next 18 days, too. Like, an honestly ridiculous amount. We need to pack, pack, pack, and pack some more. We need to clean the place so we will get our deposit back. We need to make sure that both of our cars are tuned up for the long drive from Cincinnati to Boston. We need to sort through what will be stored and what will be put in our cars for the move to our temporary housing. (Shall I call it half-way housing? Maybe?) Boyfriend needs to keep job-hunting so we can have two incomes for the first time in two years. His mom and brother are visiting for his graduation (in exactly 2 weeks from today), so we have the joy of preparing for that.

The good thing is we have still been pretty productive. Boyfriend and I started packing this past weekend but are having difficulty selling the things we don’t want to bring with us. (You’d think living around a dozen fraternity and sorority houses would mean somebody would want a hardwood poker table and 40 pieces of bar glassware and accessories!) I finally reserved our PODS moving box.  (Of course packing all of our crap in the thing will be an all-day process, I’m sure.) I think we’re doing okay.

I’ve always been considered pretty eclectic, ever-changing, and off-the-wall, so changes are fun to me… but I am still looking forward to the settling-down part!

18 days away. That’s it.

Why I Haven’t Blogged in Nearly 5 Days

In reality, I haven’t blogged in almost a week. (I pre-write and schedule my Wordless Wednesday posts to be posted on their respective dates.) Why? Well, soonafter I wrote last Monday’s post, I left for dinner with a friend/coworker.

I wish that were the end of the story.

A 17-year-old lost control of his F-150 and hit me while I was at a red light. My first ever accident and my first ever police report. At least being in a rental car and on a business trip means that this doesn’t show up on my insurance and my employer covers all costs; in other words, it could have been a lot worse!

I wish, again, that were the end of my story.

I got back to my hotel room and noticed that my cell phone charger was gone… and $28 in cash… and my Nook Color (including the case, screen protector, and 16GB microSD card. While bitching to the hotel staff and waiting for the police to arrive, a guy down the hall from me was doing the same thing. His GPS and laptop were stolen. I got to write my second ever police report the same night as the first.

Needless to say, I’ve been a bit distracted and distressed lately, hence the absence of posts. Hell, I haven’t even exercised between last Monday and today (Sunday) because of how sore my back has been, though today I’m nearly pain-free. So much for taking advantage of gorgeous TX weather to get myself back into the exercise game!

Sigh.

I have a lot of things I want to write about, but that will come a bit later, once I’m back home. Until then, I’ll keep popping pain meds and doing what little exercise I can do. The good news: I’ve been eating a lot of new foods at lots of awesome restaurants here in the Lone Star State! There is so much to write about!

Stay tuned for that.

SSDD

[same stuff, different blog]

I’ve decided to move all of my posts from Food Flirt over here to a new blog. Have no fear, ye few followers, for I’ll be pretty much posting about the same ol’ stuff: new foods, new recipes, new things going on in my life… but there will be some new items I’ll blab about.

I’m eclectic and I love trying new things, as mentioned in my “old” blog; therefore, I do have lots of hobbies. Some last, some fade, but I will indeed talk about them all.

So, this post is mainly to let you all know that I’m still alive… and here I am!

More to come.