Dec 13, 2012

Turns out I wanted to talk about my job

I don't have anything specific that I want to say today, but I was finally reading a few entries on my stand-by favorite blog (Roni's Weigh), and I felt like writing. The coffee is helping... have I ever mentioned that coffee gets me positively high? Well, it does.

I'm sitting here in my office. Next to my huge window. Overlooking (a parking lot, and) Chuck Yeager Bridge in Charleston, WV. It's cloudy this morning, and the sun is shooting out from between some clouds with smoky beams of light heading down over the mountain. It's quiet because not everybody is here yet... I already have an email request waiting for me, but I've chosen to ignore it for these few minutes.

I think the bottom line here is that I am very happy to be gainfully employed, after a very trying year of not being sure what would be next for me and the rest of the Cooper Family. In addition, I also really like my job, and I love that my office has this window. Not everybody gets one, but I have one. Some people have one but keep the blinds shut all day. I think that's a waste. Even though the weather outside is affecting my comfort sitting here right next to the window, I'm going to tough it out, and eventually one day I'll be looking out at snow falling on the parking lot. I don't know if I'll get anything done that day.

I've liked this job since the day it started, at least after I realized that my supervisor really was a nice guy, and that the lady I would be working with didn't hate me (ladies tend to hate me). I came into the job in a very busy time, so busy in fact that my group was "sequestered" in another part of the building, working out of a conference room, allowed very little interruption. We have since moved back to our offices, but that time in the conference room getting to know everyone, sharing breakfasts, snacks, jokes, and stories, was priceless. I know for sure that all of us who were up there miss it very much.

One sad thing that has happened since then is that the lady I was working with, who actually shares my first name, is gone. She needed to take a better-paying job to support her family, and has thus moved on to greener pastures. I miss her very much. She and I are similar people... she's a harder worker than I am, but we both have a strong sense of team and a drive for accomplishment. We worked well together, but more importantly she very quickly became a great friend. I don't befriend people (women) very readily, so this took me by surprise. Plus, she knew everything about this job. I could ask her anything and she knew the answer.

Now, I sit in this office alone, nobody on the other side of the ridiculous partition to make a joke to, nobody to lovingly call me "Coop" and deal out generous compliments to my already-inflated ego. I am still very busy, so the boss has told people specifically not to visit my office unless absolutely necessary. But alas, I have this window, and I have this job. Don't tell anybody who works here, but often when I sit down by this window with a stack of paper in front of me to go to work, the thought involuntarily pops into my head: "I love my job." Crazy, isn't it?

Sep 8, 2012

For the Record 9/8/12

As promised, here is my second installment of For the Record, my new Saturday tradition of telling about my day.

Bryan and I woke today sans kids, and it was lovely. We slept in late ('till almost 8 o'clock), had coffee, and headed to the tile store. We spent over two hours there, unencumbered by whining children, and picked out tile for several projects we plan to have done at our new house.

Yes, that's right, our new house. We have a contract, are pre-approved for a loan, and a plan to buy a new house! We are very excited, but feel like we've lost what we hoped for so many times before, we are still waiting to see if it really actually works out. Bryan's done so much work planning the necessary projects to make the house better for our use... we've met with contractors, HVAC guys, and are trying to see an electrician.

It's such a weird feeling to really feel like all this craziness we've been dealing with finally has an end in sight.

After the tile store, we went out to pick up the kids, then went to lunch. Zene was ridiculously tired today, and napped a little in the car on the way home. We chilled at home for awhile, watched some tv, then I went to the store to get stuff for Bryan to make dinner. The kids played with their friend DJ all day, and are now having a sleepover with him. I hope they actually go to sleep sometime tonight.

We had dinner, I made chocolate chip cookie bars, and now we're settled in to watch random football games. This is the point of the night where I would normally read the book I've been reading on Kindle, but alas I left my iPad at work yesterday, so I will go without. Feeling kinda sleepy anyway.

Saturday nights are awesome. Very different from how they were 12 years ago, but just as enjoyable.

Sep 3, 2012

Our Labor Day

Today is proof that writing is good for me. I sat outside this morning, gathering my thoughts while writing in this blog, then preceded to go forth and have a wonderful day. Here's what I/we did today:

  • After writing in my blog, went inside, and Zene asked what was for breakfast, so I cleaned the kitchen, made breakfast, and I had an awesome omelet with black bean corn salsa & green peppers, with a whole wheat English muffin. 
  • Watched a movie with Bryan over breakfast & coffee
  • Played What's in Ned's Head and Sorry! with the kids
  • (This is the best part) Packed up a basketball and water, and went for a walk with the kids to the park. Ran/walked a couple laps while they played, then played basketball with Tayan for like an hour, as if I didn't care at all how I looked doing it, because I don't. Walked most of the way back home too, then Bryan picked us up. 
  • Went out to eat at Cheddar's, even enjoying the time we had to wait by shopping around town with our buzzer. 
  • Cut the boys' hair for the first time! It was a ill stressful for us all, but turned out well. 
  • Played some wicked music with my band, and encouraged us to actually schedule a Real Gig. 
Now I am showered, tired in a great way, and feeling like I did right by the whole family today, including myself. 

And one more great thing... On our walk today, Tayan said "Wow, look at that huge hill over there. Can you imagine walking up that?" It was out of our way, but I encouraged them and pretty much forced them to try it. Tayan was protesting, refusing to run, but I was only positive, telling him he was doing great walking up the hill. He started to run then, and made it to the top. It was awesome. We were so proud of ourselves. 

I think exercising with the kids may be the answer to my current exercise issues. It points out to me why I'm really doing this--to be able to teach them that this is how we live. Actively. 

Thank God for Paid Holidays

Essentially it is a Monday morning. I slept till 7:30, and just rolled outta bed ten minutes ago.  Other than trying to catch the newest chain restaurant at a less busy than usual time, to eat lunch, I have no concrete plans for the day. Part of the reason I laid in bed half asleep for nearly an hour is because I wasn't sure what I want to do next. Here are the activities I have been considering for the morning:

  1. Go to an amusement park (not really an option; too far/expensive)
  2. Do laundry (much more grounded, but fun...?)
  3. Go swimming (meh)
  4. Drink coffee and watch a movie (nice, but usually leads to an unfulfilling day)
And the more healthy choices:
  1. Make a nice omelet and clean the kitchen for cooking later
  2. Do my Burpees Body Transformation Challenge workout, or
  3. Go for a run.
It looks like I've decided to do none of these things, and enjoy sitting on the quiet porch and pontificate to my iPad about things I want/ought to be doing. Since I'm here, I should do my best at the choice I've apparently made.

I thank God and the federal government for paid holidays. Do you know some people have to give up money from their usual paycheck to enjoy a Labor Day holiday? Sure, they don't have to go to work that day, but they have to actually pay for it, and even they still love holidays! 

In our time right now of much traveling and uncounted stresses, we choose to treat this holiday like any other Sunday, minus the opportunity to feel like we ought to go to church. I think this is a great way to approach the day off, and really helps Tuesday feel like Monday when we go back to our busy routine tomorrow...

...but my, this morning is perfect for a run. I know that I have one in me, but somehow that's not good enough. If I run today, will I run again this week? Will I do a 5k in a couple of months? Will I still be a Runner next year? Somehow, all this matters to me as I consider how to start this day off right. I love myself, but sometimes I just wish I could take it easy on me. 

Sep 1, 2012

For the Record: An Introduction

I started "For the Record" many years ago, as a way to account a little bit of every day of my life. It's a Word document I keep on my hard drive, and whenever I feel like it I give it an update. It's based on a diary that my grandma used to have. I was always amazed that she would allow me to read it, but after reading it I knew why. It wasn't a "diary" as my 10 year old brain understood it; rather, it was an account of every day of her life. It had entries like "Kids came to visit today. We played Scrabble..." 

So here, for the first time, I'm going to start sharing my For The Record thoughts, once a week, on Saturdays. Here's the first one. Enjoy. 


For The Record...


Wow, it's the first day hath September. I have learned something today: I am better--happier--saner when I am writing. I have said for a long time, jealously, that true artists (musicians, painters, etc) are what they are because they can't be sane without doing their art. I love to make music, and I love drawing, but I can be sane without them. Maybe I can't be without writing. 

I'm sitting on my front porch in Beckley. I've been awake since 4:55. It's Saturday. Lupin and Pumpkin the Cat are with me, the sun is starting to lighten up the sky, and the three of us are watching  a squirrel disquieting this lovely morning by continuing to jostle the leaves of his nearby oak tree. It is comical how the three of us are similarly disturbed by this, but only I am also amused by it. It's nice to be one of the animals, curiously watching another animal do his thing, but I am also a Person, so I see differently than they do. 

Oh, and now Lupin is jealous that the cat is free to go wait fruitlessly under the tree for Said Squirrel to mishappenly fall from it into his waiting claws. So much so that Lupin is currently looking over his shoulder at me with disdain, as icily as a Labrador can (ie, as icy as a Hershey bar in August). 

There are mosquitos out here. I am pretending not to care. 

I think I may have promised Zene last night that we would camp tonight at Nana's house. I think he said to me "Does Daddy know we're going to camp tomorrow at Nana's house?" and I may have replied "Don't tell him yet, but yes we will." 

Bless Me Blogger, for I Have Sinned

It's been several months since my last blogfession.

Oh, where to begin. How about with yesterday... only a few hours ago now, because I am awake at 5:43AM this morning, and have been since 4:55. There was no exercise yesterday, and here's what I ate/consumed for the day:

from 5:30AM when I woke up 'till 10:30 - Nothing at all
10:30 - a large sausage biscuit
12:30PM - a mint chocolate chip Klondike bar
3:00 - a chocolate chip cookie bar
5:15 - another chocolate chip cookie bar
6:00 - a Saranac Adirondack Lager (oddly, while sitting in my Adirondack chair)
7:00 - 8:30 - a teeny tiny Greek salad with hardly any feta, 6 chicken wings, a pepperoni roll, and about 1 entire pitcher of Pabst Blue Ribbon

I barely remember anything else about yesterday evening. Bryan drove us home, and I remember Zene asking me to lay down with him. I don't remember if I did that, I don't remember if we said prayers or if the kids had pajamas on, but I do remember being very surprised that everything was so spinny, and surprised to wake up in my chair in the livingroom at midnight by myself.

It's hard for me to tell that story. It seems like way too much information to share publicly. I don't want people to know that I would ever lose time after drinking, and I don't want to believe it myself. I am so ashamed of how I ate yesterday, and the weird thing is, at the time, it didn't even seem that bad. I was so busy at work (which is very new for me), and it was so important that I crank out 3 applications, and the day felt so weird like it was just flying by at double speed... that when Klondike bars showed up, and I wasn't that lunch hungry, I was like "Sure, of course I'll have one right now without even having lunch."

Then I came home and had a beer. Totally normal and acceptable for a Friday evening, except that the one beer made me half drunk for lack of regular food.

Then, at dinner... last time we went there for dinner, I drank lots of beer, and ate LOTS of pizza, wings, etc. I didn't want a repeat of that, so I guess I ordered accordingly. Ate a pepperoni roll from the kids plate, and finished Bryan's beer because he was driving. Subsequently, I realize now that I may have also inherited Bryan's throat-scorching cold because of that beer. Great.

Now it's 5:59AM, I'm awake with a headache, and I feel like a poop stain.

In the immortal words of Axl Rose, "Where do we go from here? Aye Aye Aye Where do we go now? Aye ay ay ay ay ay ay ay ay WHERE DO WE GO???!"

You get the point.

Aug 6, 2012

Burpees Body Transformation Challenge

I'm doing it! YumYucky's Burpees Body Transformation Challenge. I've decided to do it 3x per week for 12 weeks, 20 minutes, as many burpees as I can muster. I even have a handy dandy spreadsheet to keep track. Check it out, and feel free to add yourself on there too in the next column. The spreadsheet is open for anyone to edit.

Lots of other stuff going on in my life, including having started an awesome and very busy job. Trying to sell our house and move to where our jobs are... more on that later, probably when I have more concrete stuff to report.

Jul 17, 2012

Buying a House Sucks and Other News

Well, I haven't "worked out" since I did that plank/burpees workout three days ago. This is the first day I've woken up since then that I didn't have to roll out of bed because my stomach muscles hurt so badly. I have done some active stuff though, for instance spending an hour up in a 100 degree attic yesterday and sweating at least a cup of calories out. It's funny how you can burn calories by doing nothing but being hot. Then I ended up spending lunch and dinner eating 4 pieces of gut-globbing cheesy pizza though--yea me.

This is Tuesday of my last week as an unemployed person, and believe me I am excited about it. I kindof hate being unemployed, because it makes me feel kinda useless to society. On the other hand, it's been great being with the kids so much. I guess I haven't been with them this consistently since they were newborns. We have a nice rhythm going, and they are enjoying Summertime almost as much as kids on Sesame Street. They play outside from the time their neighbor friend gets up (which is shockingly late) 'till we force them to come in at night. We go swimming, they eat popsicles and ice cream, they go visit the strange, single neighborhood grown-up man (just kidding, they don't do that).

So anyway, buying a house sucks. Shew, I don't even know if I want to go into it now. Long story short:

  1. in Early June, we found a house we wanted in Charleston
  2. some people wanted to buy our house, we went under contract
  3. next day we put in an offer on the Charleston house
  4. a week later, found out the people can't buy our house- can't get the loan
  5. we're still under contract on Charleston house, contingent that our house sells first
  6., within the next week and a half
  7. ...which isn't possible
So our only hope of getting that house now are to 1. get under contract on our house ASAP, and 2. get the relocation company that owns the Charleston house to give us another month to close on their house, without adding 1.5% to the cost, which is what they want to do. Needless to say, we're working on back-up plans. The main thing is, we really want the kids to start school in the city and district that we'll be living in. We're trying to find out if we can rent a place in Charleston if needs be. Maybe we could even rent the house we plan to own... we'll see. It's all a crazy mess, and one thing we've learned is that real estate agents suck. They are never working for our best interests, only their own. I mean, that's what people do naturally I know, but you expect people to go against their nature a little bit to help you out when you hire them to do it. 

We're hopeful that something is going to work out. I mean, something will definitely work out, but we don't know when or what it'll be. It's a hard place to be, but people are in much harder places than this. We're trusting that God has a great plan for us, and we will be as patient as we can while we wait to see what it is. 

Jul 12, 2012

My Life Lately

I really have to learn to write in this "journal" even when there is only mediocre progress to report. One thing I've learned about myself recently: I am very hard on myself. It's hard for me to look at maintaining, getting by, and keeping the kids alive for the day as positive. I feel like I have to go beyond, excel, and make sure the kids had fun and are worn out for the day to be positive. I know the truth, but I have to work on teaching myself to be satisfied.

My progress since last visit (in mid-May):

  1. I've continued to maintain my weightloss
  2. My kids haven't killed each other or been seriously maimed while I've stayed home to watch them
  3. I continue to eat a lot of healthy foods
  4. I got a J-O-B!
Haven't done so well on the exercise, which has been getting me a little down in the dumps lately. This is the first year since 2010 that I haven't done any 5k's at all. Last year I didn't do one 'till August, so I still have time, but I'm not sure I really want to. Okay, I do want to be able to run 3.1 miles, and I'd love to do it in a group early on a Saturday morning and whatnot... just not sure I want to run 3x a week for several weeks to get to that point. We'll see. Things are about to change in my life once again as I start my new job, and eventually get moved to a new city. 

Our routine right now is that Bryan gets up early to commute one hour to work, and I stay home with the kids. It's been that way since my previous job ended back in mid-June. Honestly, the prospect of being home with the kids scared the crap out of me, and some days have been pretty hard. Some days have been great though, especially the ones where we do something exciting like go to the pool. The hard days are when I try really hard to get something important done, like work on  contracts and documents having to do with attempting to buy a new house.

The house-buying hasn't gone so great, but not by any fault of ours. We were approved for a bigass loan, which is great, and we got a contract on the house we want to buy, which is great, but what isn't so great is the people who wanted to buy our house didn't get their loan. So now we're stuck. We need the considerable down payment that will come from selling our house in order to buy the next house. No two ways about that, and now we have to wait and see if it's going to still be possible to get the house we really want and currently have locked up in a contract that runs out at the end of this month.

This week I realized that if I continued not to exercise, it was going to continue to wreak havoc on my mood. Two days ago I had an awful day. I loaded around all day and ate really crappy stuff. By the end of the day I was just so done with dealing with anything anymore, and I knew all of it was attributable to the way I felt about myself for not exercising lately. Yesterday I woke up and mowed the grass in the  morning, which is a great workout and makes the yard look great. Subsequently, I had a great day. Felt great, ate well, and even logged my food for the day. Today, I took my own advice and started my day with a workout of plank, mountain climbers, and burpees. I will also incorporate some more activity into the rest of my day, and log my food for the day.

So, that's where I've been lately. I'll be back tomorrow, and let you know how today went. 

May 16, 2012


Walking down the hall today to heat up my lunch after a long morning getting stuff that used to be "ours" loaded onto trucks to new homes, I started to notice the ghosts.

The hallway was dark, because nobody had been in it today to turn on a light.
Some office doors were open to reveal the emptiness of chairs and furniture.
Some doors were thankfully shut to keep their emptiness hidden.
The faint sound of papers shredding came from behind me, down another hall.
Most of those who still remain had gone to lunch to escape the quiet.

Near each office, I could feel the people who used to work there.
This hallway used to house Rich, Harry, Jerry, Dianne, Kate, and Jorge.
Longer ago, Billie, Walt, Ewa...
Walking down here, you'd hear Billie laughing out loud, see Harry crouched over his computer, notice Rich's giraffes.
Jerry and Kate would be in their labs, Jerry at the bench, Kate in a lab coat, weighing samples.

The hallway used to smell of coffee; there was none in the pot today.

As I left with my hot lunch, I felt a burning in my chest that almost felt like a sob.
As I walked by Iris' old office, I realized that the ghosts have been building up for quite some time now.
Iris, who's job has been vacant for two years... Tammy, who was never replaced since she left  years ago.

And now the front offices are all empty.
Stephanie's office is empty.
Stephanie was the big sister to us all; she never lacked at least one office visitor. She knew what was going on.
We have cried and laughed in that office, probably every one of us.

I walk by Sue's office, which used to never be open unless she was sitting right there at her computer.
It is open, dark, and empty.
I think of her husband, Doug, my supervisor, and I don't even want to imagine his office.
I know that it is empty, he will not turn around to greet me when I knock and go in, he won't have nice things to say, he won't be there to discuss my future or accomplishments.
His bowl of mints will be empty.

Just like in any ghost story, you realize they are there long after they have been haunting you.

May 6, 2012

Stupendous Sunday!

I've read many a "Sensational Sunday" post by Roni Noone over the years, and love seeing how productive and positive she can be on the day that brings the doldrums out in me more than any other. It's that last day of the weekend, the day when I realize that my free time is almost at an end, and laundry hasn't been done, the house is a mess, etc.

Well, not today! Bryan and I are very energized lately by our new news--that we will be moving to Charleston in the near future for his new job, so we are quite motivated to get the house sorted, organized, have a yard sale of all the stuff we don't need, and all that jazz. So when I woke up today, the first thing I did after peeing was go to the kids' room (they were at Nana and Poppy's) and start sorting things to go to the yard sale. Bryan found me a little while later and called me crazy.

After going to iHOP (I have to spell it that way now) for breakfast, we went to church. Met up with the kids and grandparents there, and I taught a rousing lesson of Children's Church. I'm really hitting my stride there. Afterwards we partook in the "International Tasting Luncheon," at which I indulged too much and felt sickly full all the way home.

At home, I decided to get active to work off that huge lunch and breakfast. Started weedeating in the front yard... then cutting down the trees that have grown in the gaps in the concrete in the back. Finally had to get a hatchet and just swing at the stupid root systems until I could chunk them all out. Swept that up. Cleared out a bunch of rotten wood that had prevented me from weed eating an area of the yard for years. Drug that at least 50-lb bag of rotten wood to the curb. Went back up front to weed eat again with a new battery. Sat for awhile. I was exhausted. Then started going through our book shelf, sorting for the yard sale and putting other stuff away. Then went to the basement and packed more cd's.

Bryan came home from play rehearsal for dinner break, and I made the kids dinner. After he left, I fed the kids and sat down with the rest of their mashed potatoes and a beer. After that I sat there in my nice, clean computer room in a comfy chair, watched the kids playing outside through the window, and finished reading a book I had started like a year ago: Fat Woman on the Mountain, about a lady who climbed Kilamanjaro. Awesome story.

Tayan came in, starting telling me a too-long story about how the kid down the street was only 5 and could ride without training wheels. Asked if we could go learn... I smiled while listening to his tale, and said "Sure." Pumped up the bigger bike's tires, and we went to it. He was awesome. Fell a few times, but caught himself and ditched the bike well. After a few tries I was letting go of him and running beside him up and down the road.

Finally we had to call it a day. It had been a long, warm day, and they were extremely exhausted. We came in, I showered, then gave them a bath. Bryan came home, and now, finally, we are getting ready to rest for the evening. What a productive day it was. I love days like this. I was wavering right after that lunchtime debaucle, and the day could've gone quite sour from that point, but instead, I rallied, and we all had a great, sweaty, dirty, day.

Apr 26, 2012


I almost ate a Twinkie tonight.
Twinkies are disgusting.
Rough, sandy, slightly-lemony cake, filled with the most delicious white filling in the world.
They are not worth it.

Feb 24, 2012

"What AREN'T you doing?"

On Roni's Weigh this week, Roni asked for readers to answer these questions about ourselves: 

What AREN’T you
that you want to be
simply because you don’t like the body you are in?

Here are my answers

I am not doing anything simply because I don’t like the body I am in.

I’m not afraid anymore like I used to be about my body. I don’t mind people seeing the flab on my arms, or my big hips and butt, because they are part of me and I love them. In the last few years I have
  • run 5k races (nearly the slowest in every one)
  • climbed a rock wall in my shortest shorts at Universal Islands of Adventure with people watching,
  • played tag with my kids like it doesn’t matter that I’m 33 years old
  • climbed a mountain without being winded
  • strutted around for my husband, knowing that I’m as sexy as he’s always thought I was

I am not experiencing calm fulfillment simply because I don’t like the body I am in.

Although I have maintained 60 pounds of weight loss for nearly 2 years, I have been unable to rest and know that I am currently at a good, happy weight and fitness level. There is so much more fitness-wise that I know is in me, but I haven’t had the oomph to get it done. I know that if I would eat well 90% of the time (instead of my current ~60% of the time), I would lose some extra pounds that hold me back from accomplishing fitness goals.

I am not trying Chili’s newest dinner deal simply because I don’t like the body I am in.

I have been really good about avoiding restaurants that are problem places for me as far as “not much healthy to order on the menu.” I’m actually really excited about Roni’s trip to Applebee’s, and looking forward to their new <550 calorie menu. Will definitely be checking that out.

I am not achieving 5k races lately simply because I don’t like the body I am in.

Part of my body is this stupid foot of mine, which has troubled me for years. I finally got an x-ray recently and found out that there is indeed a heel spur in there, and it’s been hurting worse than ever. I am afraid to run more than 10 or so minutes at a time because of the idea of the “little rock”-like thing inside of my heel.

…the rest of these I’m going to switch up because I don’t want to be negative any more…

I’m enjoying working out 5 days a week simply because I LOVE the body I am in!

It feels wonderful to be communing with my body for 45ish minutes per day. I have been doing Nike Training workouts from the free app, and they are just brutal! Haven’t gotten beyond the “beginner” workouts, but I’m really enjoying them. I can always count on parts of my body being sore, especially my legs after a lunge and jumping-heavy workout. I’ve also been incorporating weights for upper body training, and it’s been great.

I’m wearing little dresses sometimes simply because I LOVE the body I am in!

Bryan bought me this adorable little dress that I wore on our last date, and it was awesome. It was a stretchy, loose material, so it accentuated my lovely hips, and I just looked cute. Really enjoyed wearing it and feeling special.

I’m feeling confident simply because I LOVE the body I am in!

Of course confidence waxes and wanes, but on some days like today I feel great about myself and the way I look. I can rely on the workouts that I’m doing and the good eating choices that I make, while discarding the days where I’m feeling too crappy to exercise, or decide to indulge in way too much Valentine’s candy.

I’m accomplishing my dream of loving life to its fullest simply because I LOVE the body I am in!

‘Nuff said about that one. It says it all. 

Feb 13, 2012

It Takes All Kinds of Days

I feel like talking about health and fitness today. I am still here struggling with the desire to and reality of becoming a fitnessy, healthy person. Here’s what I did this morning:

  1. slept in because of 2 hour delay for school/work
  2. had some full-caffeine coffee with ½ n ½
  3. with an icing-less beet cupcake
  4. still hungry, didn’t feel like fruit, had small bowl of Kashi w/soy milk
  5. went to work
  6. pittered my morning away (it was short because of the 2hr delay)
  7. went to Ruby Tuesday with Bryan and a friend
  8. did the FULL Ruby Tuesday gauntlet
    1. salad bar, complete with ham/pea pasta salad
    2. 2 Ruby Mini’s (beef, cheese, mayo, etc)
    3. Fries on the side
    4. ALSO partook in half of a Blondie for One (so, Blondie for 0.5)
  9. commenced feeling full, fat, and somewhat miserable
  10. went to the gym and did 40 sweaty minutes on the elliptical trainer

I don’t feel like doing any “at least…”s today. No “at least I worked out,” or “at least I only had half the Blondie.” I’m just past all that crap. I know what I need to do and I continue to not do it.

Folks, this is life. It’s so very often not perfect at all. We can’t be perfect; if we could, our moms would’ve named us at the behest of God Almighty, and our name might rhyme with Fleezus.

So here I sit, having eaten enough calories for the entire day sofar… AND, I had a great time at lunch. I ate fun food that I love, enjoyed company, and acted as if it didn’t matter at all. And it actually doesn’t. My parents always said “It takes all kinds,” from the immortal words of Daniel Dravot, played by Sean Connery in The Man Who Would Be King.

Well, it takes all kinds of days, too. 

Feb 9, 2012

Dad has lymphoma.

Dad has lymphoma. I mean, there’s a very slight chance that he has some crazy other kind of tumor growing in his lymph nodes that is not lymphoma (which is a clever word for cancer), but chances are Dad has lymphoma. At this moment, my dad is in an ornithologist’s office (I didn’t even know how to spell that word ‘till Word corrected it for me just now… guess you learn something new every day). He’s in an ornithologist’s office (got it right that time) finding out the results of his tumor extraction from last week. He’s sitting in a chair on the other side of some guy’s desk, listening to “his options.”

Okay, I don’t want to make this sound all doomsday and horrible, because many lymphomas are completely treatable and curable with chemotherapy. The thing is, not long ago Dad wasn’t thinking about chemotherapy except with pity for his brother-in-law who was currently going through it. Now he’s thinking of chemotherapy as a very real and necessary part of his life for probably for at least the next year. He’s also likely thinking about how cancer goes away, but it nearly always comes back, as it has with his brother-in-law, my Uncle Phil. He’s thinking about the end of his life as a reality, even if it’s years and years down the road. I hate that he has to be thinking of this.

Dad’s also getting a bone marrow test today, and that sucks. I guess they’ll be getting it from either his hip or his back, and I hear that it hurts like a motherfucker. My dad has always been so healthy, so strong. And now he’s got to lie on a table and have this horribly painful, huge needle stuck into his hip to get inside his bone, to see what kind of lymphoma he has. To see how bad it is. To see if the place where his very blood is made is in an uproar panic, or if it’s seemingly oblivious to the monstrous growth that had been going on in his neck.

I love thinking of the body as a machine… a factory… I know! Like a beehive. Everybody has their own job, they know it perfectly, and they do it constantly. Feedback loops, neurons firing, blood being made, pumped, and cleaned… it all happens since the day our hearts start beating, with no conscious thought about it on our part. It just happens, like in Osmosis Jones, or even Innerspace. It has always fascinated me the way the body works, and I’ve gotten pretty good at treating my body the way it would like to be treated. I eat good foods, try not to eat empty calories. I hate the thought of my stomach going “What the fuck am I supposed to do with this?!” I like my stomach saying “Yeah, that’s the stuff. I can make so much good stuff out of this… I can feed your brain, repair muscle, keep the heart happy.” I love that thought.

And it also fascinates me that sometimes—often these days—in fact, almost always if we live long enough—our cells somehow turn on us. They get possessed by some madness, probably induced by the bombardment of unseen chemicals in air, water, and food that we have consumed since we were babies. They start growing in a mass somewhere in our body, and eventually we die from complications associated with this overgrowth of our own cells.

I used to think that “Cancer” was some invasion from outside; some organism or something that made our cells go crazy. It’s terrifying, however, to know now that it’s just ourselves, and that the treatment is to, as the great Jerry Seinfeld once said, “take the amount that would kill me and back it off a little.” We kill our cells with chemotherapy, without targeting a certain problem area or cell type. We kill them all equally, and no wonder it makes us sick.

If my dad is very lucky today he will find out that this was all a misunderstanding. The >walnut-sized lump which took up several lymph nodes and had been starting to grow into the muscle of his neck was just… a fluke. He won’t even have to have chemo. I’m praying for that to happen, but I know there’s only so much even God can do when it comes to this stuff. 

Jan 27, 2012

7 Hours Off

I had 7 hours off yesterday, free from kids, responsibilities (other than a little laundry), and everything. I was sick, sure, but the 7 hours were so sweet. Lupin was my companion, and he is absolutely the best for lying around doing nothing with. He totally approves of it, and seems to be perplexed why we ever do anything but lie around--except when it's his breakfast or dinner time. 

I started the day by going back to sleep. Then I needed breakfast and came ever so close to skipping out to Tudor's Biscuit World (one block away) to get biscuits and gravy for $0.99. I mean, I was soooo close, too. I told Lupin, "Lupin, I'm going to Tudor's to get biscuits and gravy. I'll be back." I put on a big floppy hat so nobody would see my sick hair, and threw the change on  the dresser into my pajama pants. It was enough for THREE biscuits and gravy. I was already contemplating what specialty biscuit I would get to go along with my 1lb of gravy-biscuit. 

Well, then I finally did something smart. I quickly (before my brain could catch up with me) tweeted to YumYucky, who has been gracious enough to become my sponsor of sorts. I stated what I was getting ready to do, threw in "there's no good food in the house," and "Help me!" ... As you can imagine, after tweeting that cry out for help, I couldn't allow myself to go through with it. 

I had to re-assess: there were no eggs in the house, and that's what I really wanted. The other problem was that I had gotten too hungry by going back to sleep instead of eating. I decided since I had been about to scrape the bottom of the barrel for breakfast, anything remotely healthy with fiber in it would do now. Decided on a whole wheat english muffin, not toasted (I wanted some FAT), but buttered conservatively and fried on the skillet. And with TWO tablespoons of all-fruit jelly. Caution to the wind!!! 

While it was frying up, figured I better decide on second breakfast too before another crisis was on the verge. I'd been wanting to make granola for... let's admit it, YEARS... so the day had finally come. Got out everything granola-y we had in the cupboard: oats, leftover pack of Wendy's pecans from a salad, dried cranberries, dried "tropical mix" (mango, pinapple, coconut), and flax. It was a lot of fun making up the recipe, and I added cinnamon, salt, and put 4oz honey, vanilla, and 1oz of warm water into a bowl to dissolve the honey. This way I figured the sweetness would get more evenly distributed, and the water would bake out anyway. Threw it in the oven at 275 and went to eat my Breakfast #1 in bed. 

The smell was tremendous. It was all I could do not to eat it half-done out of the oven door. I waited, but did eat it while still hot. And if you've never had hot granola, you gotta try it. It'll make you wanna go throw your arms around the nearest tree, I promise. 

With hot granola in my belly, and after tweeting a half dozen more times, I went back to sleep for TWO HOURS. It was awesome. By then it was 1, and I was down to 2 hours of freedom left. I figured it was time for a glorious shower, with nobody poking their head in to ask me to wipe their butt or anything. Ahh. 

I made sure that I was folding laundry when the family came home, so it didn't look like I layed around all day (while sick) and slept (imagine!). I was back to my old self that evening too, getting the kids to clean their room, do homework, read to me... It's truly amazing what 7 hours to yourself can do for a mom.

Jan 25, 2012

More about Cleveland

You'll have to bear with me here, Bryan and I are making big-time life-changing moves here in the next few months, and Cleveland has a lot to do with it. Just gotta talk it out...

So, in addition to my last post outlining stuff we love about Cleveland and job situations here in Beckley, here's another reason why we want to move to Cleveland:

We love Cleveland. --And we figure, not many people love Cleveland. We further figure that if someone does happen to love this dirty, cold, windy city with failing professional sports teams, they ought to at least have the decency to move there if they aren't already living there. There are enough people who hate Cleveland, within and without it, so it's a Cleveland-lover's obligation to obtain a job and some real estate there.

Seriously though, we want to live in a place where our kids someday might choose to come live near us, and not only because they love us, but because they love where we live and can find good jobs there. There are plenty of kids in West Virginia who come back home to live, usually right in their parents basements for awhile, and often start meth labs down there... but that's neither here nor there. They come home because they love home and they love their parents, but they usually end up working in the food service industry, as sales representatives, at call centers, in the mines, or not at all. And if they do get a cool job that they love--like Bryan's sister Jamie did when she first finished college--it doesn't pay a living wage. Bryan and I were very lucky that I found such a cool, profitable, kushy job in this area. And we loved living close to his parents (but that's for the next post...).

Also, houses are cheap in Cleveland. We can get a really nice, large house in a great neighborhood for the price of a small dinky house in a bad neighborhood here. --And believe me, that's saying something, because Southern West Virginia is one of the cheapest places in the country to live.

Final reason we want to move to Cleveland: Tremont. (check out its Wiki Page)

We love Tremont, and want to live in it. It houses many of our favorite places in Cleveland, like Lilly's Chocolates, Lolita's, and Lucky's Cafe (all eateries). There are also many art galleries, restaurants, bars, and shops that we've never tried there, including Farenheit, a very happening upscale restaurant. Tremont has a lovely Montesorri school, grades K-8, which I am in the process of getting in contact with to talk to its principle about what they offer to extra smart kids like ours. Tremont also has monthly art walks, and I just found out that it has a weekly farmers market, even through the winter.

There's one house in Tremont that's for sale, and across the street from it is a little local book shop. (Beckley now has absolutely NO book stores, except a Christian book store. If we want books, we can just go to the book section of WalMart. I'm not kidding). Tremont also has a quaint little community pool, several playgrounds, several beautiful Gothic cathedrals, and Lincoln Park, which is just a big rectangular green space for walking.

Next post will be the reason that makes it very hard for us to move to Cleveland... stay tuned!

Jan 21, 2012

Cleveland, yes Cleveland, Ohio

Bryan and I started going to Cleveland regularly just over two years ago when we decided to go to the Cleveland Clinic Cole Eye Institute to see what they could do for his eyes. Long story short, they did miracles for his eyes, and he can now drive safely, watch TV normally, not get nose paper cuts when reading, and see our kids' faces.

But long story long, we started to fall in love with Cleveland. Here are just a few places we love to visit when we go:

and for the last two years we've talked about moving there. If circumstances had stayed the same with us, we never would've acted on it. We just couldn't imagine upping and leaving Marty and Shelia and everything else we have here in Beckley for some crazy pipe dream of living in a city that we'd come to love. 

Well, circumstances did indeed change. The ultra-stable government agricultural research lab where I work is being closed, which in itself is a sign that things need to change. Since obtaining my Masters of Public Health last year, and really since all the soul-searching I did with the leadership program the previous year, I have been thinking about getting a different job. It always came down to, my job is so kushy and so stable, and has such great health care, how could I ever leave it? Well, now I have to leave it. 

And Bryan's job is just a freak horror-show of misery. It's pretty much been that way since he got the Boss from Hell, and it wasn't much better before that. The place he works has always been known around town for their "brown box days," where they just fire people at will until they are sated for the day, then start again the next day. 

We've been looking for jobs around here, and the pickin's are very slim. For me, the most likely candidate will be working for the State Department of Environmental Protection, with which I've had 3 interviews. I'm not sure any of them will pan out, and if they do they will pay around 10k less than I'm making now. For Bryan, there is even less available. He requires an organization that's big enough to have its own in-house IT department, but not so big that it contracts out IT. There aren't very many of those in and around Beckley. But we're looking. He's had one interview for a job that paid about 15k less than he makes.

You may have guessed where this is all going. We are pretty much going to move to Cleveland if everything comes together for us. It's a daunting task, finding jobs for each of us, going up for interviews, selling our house, buying a house... a lot of craziness will ensue. But it's something we feel strongly about, and I feel that we have been faced with a lot of closed doors, and unless the door that leads to Cleveland gets slammed in our face, we will go through it. 

Tomorrow I'll talk about the other reasons we want to move there, other than the job situation. 

Jan 19, 2012

I Could Never Be a Ballerina

I'm sitting here sleepy tonight, feeling some delicious blue-ribbon biscuits in my belly, and watching Black Swan in the background. Natalie Portman, bless her heart, lost a lot of perfectly healthy fat/muscle/whatever to do that movie. I was just watching and not being able to imagine what someone would have to go through to get to the tiny size she was in that movie. And dancers have to do this all the time, not only when they're preparing for a potentially Oscar-winning role.

I could never be a ballerina. Thankfully, it's not something I ever ever wanted to do; in fact, I have a hard time even getting through a Zumba class without feeling like a total square. But aside from the dancing thing, I could never change myself into a person who would never, ever eat a blue-ribbon biscuit... and gravy... and scrambled eggs... fried potatoes. And that was all in one meal tonight! It's just not me.

It's important to know who we are, at the core, and not try to change that. I mean, I'm all for making constant improvements to one's self, but you can't change who you are. And I'm a person who loves to eat good food. So you go, Ms. Portman. You were awesome in that movie, and I can't believe you can dance like that. But I hope you went and had a big fat juicy In-N-Out burger when that was all said and done, and thanked your lucky stars that you were only a ballerina for a short time.

Jan 18, 2012

Count Your Accomplishments

I think it's important to count your accomplishments wherever you can get them. Like my dad, for instance. He's signed into for 159 days in a row!! I'm sure he's had some up days and down days, but he continues to check in every single day, log some food, log some exercise, and just let us know that he's still out there doing his best.

Well, I have an accomplishment to report too. I vowed back in November, when they decided to close our lab, that I would go to the exercise room every single day for as long as they still want me to come to work and pretend I have a real job to do. Our exercise room is very small and quaint. We have an elliptical, treadmill, stair-stepper, bike, and Bowflex. We also have a few yoga mats and ball. We have a men's and women's changing room complete with a shower. We also have a tv with built-in VHS player (It's been really fun collecting VHS tapes to watch in there). I started using the exercise room like... gosh, about 8 years ago. Some times I was going 3x a week, and other times I didn't visit for many months.

This is the first time I've endeavored to go strictly 5x per week (except for holiday weeks, of course). There's a sign-in sheet in there, and I changed the sheet back in November and looked at all those empty spaces, knowing that I was going to fill them all in. Well, here's the sign-in sheet now... Yeah, it's unfortunate there's nobody else on there. I guess shutting our lab down has depressed the few others who used to sign in sometimes to the point of not wanting to work out. I understand that.

But anyway, here it is! I did it. I only skipped 2 days: one because I had a stomach bug, and the other because I was feeling lazy. Other than that, I have been in that gym every day that I've been at work, doing a variety of elliptical, running, walking, Bowflex, and Nike Training from my iPhone app. It's been great, and now it's just a habit. Even on days that I'm not very much looking forward to it, I get up, grab my gear, and go anyway.

So, count your accomplishments, no matter what they are! After you count them and feel great about what you have been doing right, add one more thing that you intend to improve. After awhile, that'll be added to your list of successes.

And Dad, keep up the great work!! I always look forward to that announcement of how many consecutive days you've signed in!

Jan 17, 2012

Promises and Guilt

Promises promises... My mom used to tell me when I was a kid not to swear, because God doesn't like it. I think the lesson was left over from her rigorous Catholic school training. As I grew a little older, I was like "You mean 'swear' like to say a bad word, right? Not like "I swear..." Nope, she actually meant that I shouldn't say "I swear I will..." I remember being really surprised that God supposedly didn't like this. It seemed to me like promising to do something is something he would want us to do.

I still don't actually understand why God would have a problem with me "swearing" to write a blog post every single day for a week, but I do kinda get now why it is a problem. It's because we just do what we can do. We can't determine the future, so how can we promise that we will absolutely do something in it? For me, promising to do something and then failing to do it just adds to my never-ending guilt, and believe me that's the last thing I need in my life.

Guilt has been racking my mind and body my whole life, and it seems to have only gotten worse as I've aged. I decided in late 2011 that 2012 would be the year of "Guilt Free" for me. I feel like I should clarify, however, that this doesn't mean that I'm going to go hog wild doing things that I know are wrong and not atone for them. Rather, I'm just going to do what I can, and not freak out and kill myself with guilt over the things that I can't do, the situations that I can't control, or the people that I can't please every single time.

I have thought about guilt a lot in the last few years, actually, and I've come to the realization that

  1. God doesn't want me to feel guilty
  2. Guilt keeps me from doing things that are good for me 
  3. Guilt cultivates within me horribly negative thoughts about myself and my abilities

Based on these, I have determined that since God doesn't want me to feel guilt, and guilt causes me to think horrible things about myself, that guilt must from the dark place within me that I do not want to feed. Feeding that part of me can only lead to sadness. There were times in my life when I lived mostly through that other me, and I was absolutely miserable, and miserable to be around. I won't ever go back there. 

So, 2012 is the year of Guilt Free for me, which also means not making promises that I may not be able to keep. I will not "swear" that I will do something, I will only try my best to do it. When I realize that all I can do is my best, and I do my best in every endeavor, I feel closer to God than ever. And that's the best feeling.

Jan 14, 2012

A Classic Weekend Day

Today was a fun day. We woke early and got on the road to Granny and Pap's. Bryan and I got to go on a daytime date to meet lil baby Jude, go to a WVU basketball game, hang with Andy and his friends, then have a great dinner with friends. Now we're chillin' at Mom and Dad's (aka Granny and Pap's) watching Flatt and Scruggs episodes from the '50s... of all things!

When you're planning for fitness and weightloss, days like this don't really get taken into account. Still, I did the best I could with what I had... for the most part. Breakfast was responsible, snacks were wise, and dinner was small. A few beers have been had, but it's Saturday night, and we're vacating.

I'll check in again tomorrow... it'll be another crazy day of traveling and visiting with friends/family. Looking forward to it!

Jan 13, 2012

Shew! Days at home are hard!

My new inclement work schedule for work (since we got totally shut down by the government, and we're really just waiting for our final pink slip) is when the kids are off school, we are off work. Wow, so kushy, right? It really is. Today I have been totally a stay-at-home-mom with Tayan and Zene. Lemme tell ya, I dreaded the day before it even started though. I am much better off at work with only work stuff to worry about than here, managing everything, cleaning stuff, laundrying, and yelling at kids... and trying to play with them a little, too.

So that's how it started: with dread. I moved on to coffee, chores, avoiding Zene asking to play a game, then finally playing the game, packing, cleaning, getting them dressed, going to the store to buy a bin to be my outdoor cat house, going to Southern States to have a very nice lady just give me all the straw I wanted, coming home, cutting hole in said cat house, arranging cat house outside, then finally got to sit and chill for a minute with the cat on the porch.

Oh, and of course the kids have required about 5 meals in the mean time, and lunch was pretty sweet. They had leftover chicken, one had a hot dog, carrots, raw brussel sprouts, and I made them try mashed sweet potatoes. I had mashed sweet potatoes, leftover chicken, and a couple brussel sprouts. I don't do raw carrot. I hate it, and that's just that. I don't have to eat things that I hate.

Then I rocked out to Adele and Amy Winehouse, sang loudly, and did dishes. Now I am chillin again, actually sitting in my bed with a laptop, with a two-window view of the snow outside. Tayan's playing video game (which I denied him all day till now), and Zene's watching Spy Kids (and also sitting next to me intermittenly). I feel excellent.

We had chocolate chip cookies in the house today, and I didn't even care. Let the kids eat them. I re-organized our ridiculous collection of candy and snacks for our trip tomorrow (Bryan insists we have like a 10lb collection of these with us on all trips so he can choose exactly what he's feeling like), and wasn't the least bit tempted. Granted, I had already eaten 90% of the chocolate we had, and what's left I don't like. Thank God it's all gone, but I wish I'd had a little more strength in the last few weeks.

Tonight I'll do some exercise after the kids go to bed. I'm not sure what the rest of the weekend will hold, because we will be traveling, and not to hotels (where I usually rock out the fitness centers). I'll set myself up for success food-wise though, and let the exercise fall where it may. I did really well this week, and I can feel it deep down in my self.

It's so hard to sit back and enjoy a moment anymore without doing anything else. Without having a laptop on my lap, or my iPhone in my hand, a kid talking at me, or planning for my next move. I am going to make a point to get more moments like that, where I'm doing nothing but staring ahead and not thinking. I think I could manage at least a 2 minute period of this per day. How sick is that...? Two minutes. It would help though.

I'm going to start right now, unless Zene comes back within the next two minutes... and I figure there's an 85% chance of that happening. But I'm going to try anyway. If he does come back, I'll offer to read him a book.

Have a great weekend, everybody. Celebrate Dr King on Monday, in whatever small way you can. I can't describe the way I feel about that man, but it all has to do with love. Tayan told me all about Dr King yesterday, and I was never more proud of him as a school student. I think it's the most important thing he's learned at school sofar, and I hope they teach him more about him every year. I know I will.

Jan 12, 2012

My Goal Weight

In July 2009 I was 250 pounds. I first hit 190 pounds a year later, in July 2010. By July 2011 I was... still 190. That was six months ago, and here I still am at the same weight. I've been down to as far as 186, but never for more than a day. 

I have to ask myself, why? Over and over again I have gone through the cycle of working really hard, losing a few pounds, then invariably ruining it the very next day by eating a string of things that I know I shouldn't, or avoiding exercise for several days.

There are lots of reasons I give myself for doing this. Here are a few of them:

1. I don't want to go below 180, because I look good at 180, and I have the rest of my life to lose these last 10 pounds. Might as well go slowly.

2. It's not about what I weigh, it's about what I can do. I've run 5k's, I play tag with  my kids, I can climb mountains, I don't avoid doing things because of how I'll look, and I've inspired people to make changes in their own lives.

3. I am maintaining 60lb of weightloss, and eating healthier than I've ever eaten before. Give myself a break!

So, it's like part of me is saying "I'm done. We are where we want to be." But I know that's not the truth. I am not where I want to be, and I think I've figured out what is really keeping me from losing ten pounds. 

The reason is because I actually want to lose more than 10 pounds. I keep sabotaging myself because even if I do lose 10 pounds, I will still only be barely be out of "obese," as defined by the BMI gurus (I know BMI is kindof a crock, but it's not totally useless). As a 5'6" 180lb woman, I will still be just below the upper limit of "overweight." Granted, I'm a woman who packs a lot of muscle, and muscle weighs a lot. I KNOW that I'm not currently "obese," no matter what the BMI jerks have to say about it. But still... I want to be normal. I want to at least be in the upper range of normal, which would be 150 pounds for me.

So that's what I'm going to do. I'm going to lose 40 more pounds, to make it an even 100 pounds of total weight loss. It has a nice ring to it, doesn't it? I've had enough time at this weight to become used to it. I'm ready to move on. I know I can do it, that's not the question. I knew I could do it when I was at my heaviest. Losing weight is easy, it's just a numbers game... you just have to have your head in that game though, or it won't work at all. Consider my head now in

I'm doing great on my 2 promises sofar. Remember from yesterday? They were 1, log every calorie I consume, and 2, write a blog post every day. I will do both of these for at least 7 consecutive days. We'll see if I can keep up daily blogging after that... 

Jan 11, 2012


This post is meant to be read while listening to The Beastie Boys' Sabotage. I'll wait while you get it started...

Okay, listen up.

('cause you can't say nothin)

Okay, I'll stop quoting now. You know the song. It's awesome, makes you want to move, makes you wanna kick things over, makes you wanna scream in a cathartic way. Short sidebar: Last time we went to Universal Orlando I rode the Rip Ride Rockit roller coaster while listening to Sabotage, and the experience was unforgettable. Everyone gets to pick their own song to listen to, and Bryan and I chose this one. The coaster starts at a slow 90 degree straight up incline, then does a 180 and goes STRAIGHT down. While going down at umpteen whatever mph, we listened to the Beasties go "WAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!" It was awesome.

So this post ought to be me whining, because that's what I feel like doing today. Whining and complaining and begging for help because I've been sabotaging my own progress for quite a long time now. I'll just say it: I've been 190 pounds for around a year and a half. I only wanted to lose 10 more pounds, so I felt like I had forever to get it done. Well, forever seems to have come and gone, and here I still am, always on the cusp of being in the 200's again.

Well, I'm done with that. There will be no whining today. How could I whine while listening to this song?

"Our backs are now against the wall."

Instead of whining I decided to write this post, and I've committed to writing a blog post every day for the remainder of this week. I've reached out and asked for help from someone who is truly inspiring in her motivation (@YumYucky). I've committed to entering every single calorie that enters my body for the remainder of the week. Please help keep me accountable to this by checking my food journal here: You can check it anytime, it'll be there forever. You can see what I've logged in the past, as well as what I've logged today.

Moving forward from here today, I'm getting back to basics. I'm going to my lab to clean and listen to a brand new podcast from @RoniNoone, and I will be killing it in the gym this afternoon with my brand new Asics Kuyano 17's. I'm going to eat the super healthy food that I have here in my lil fridge at work. And tonight...? I will not sabotage myself. I won't.

"But I'm out, and I'm gone,
I'll tell you now I keep it on and on."