Saturday, February 27, 2010

Wish me luck!

We are going skiing this morning! I have tried to ski once before, and it was not particularly successful, but I have high hopes for today. We are going to get there right when it opens to beat the crowds, and the place we are going has lots of beginner runs. My plan is to do the tow rope/ cable tow 39483045 times until I actually figure out how to stop without falling down, and then try some of the beginner runs you access by ski lift. I'm hoping it's going to be a lot of fun. Thanks, Mom and Dad! (this is a Christmas gift from them)

Dinner last night was good. I did have "The Imam Fainted" which was a grilled eggplant with peppers, onions, tomatoes, and pine nuts... and olive oil. Lots of olive oil. Which made it very tasty. I'd definitely go back and try some of their other Turkish dishes. Despite my hatred of olives, I like Mediterranean food a lot.

After dinner we went to check out Costco. We wandered through the store and checked prices on the things we thought we'd be interested in buying there. The problem for us is that most of the things I'd want to buy there (fruit, salad, milk) would require a trip every week, and I just don't see it being worth the extra time and effort it would take to drive all the way out there- plus do my normal grocery shopping- to maybe save a few dollars over what the membership costs. And we really don't have the freezer or cabinet space to store the huge packages of meat and vegetables they sell. Had I been blown away by "Oh man, everything here is exactly what I want," then it might have been worth it, but I think I would end up resenting having to go all the way out there to shop every week if we got a membership. But at least we know that now.

Anyway, I better get my act together to run this morning. Hope you all have a good Saturday!

Friday, February 26, 2010


First off, thanks for the feedback on Costco. We may stop by this evening to check it out after dinner since we will be out that way. If I could buy salad in bulk (we eat A LOT of salad) and get a good deal on meat then I'd be happy. Both of those things are kind of expensive at Trader Joe's, which is where we buy pretty much everything else. I think (hope) if we go on a Friday evening it won't be slammed like it would on a weekend afternoon.

As for the bike picture... I just feel bad for it. It's poor breaks are going to need some serious work. But, it's really fun to kick those icicles off. And because it's been getting warm pretty much every afternoon, snow drips off the roof and onto the bike, and they keep growing back.

I'm planning to run 6-8mi easy this morning. The verdict on the treadmill is that it's either running slightly slower or I had a good run yesterday. I'm not sure which I'd rather it be. In any case, I think I've come to terms that it is what it is, and I'm happy to have it. It makes my life a lot easier/more pleasant this time of year.

HOWEVER, I realized that I have a race in about 2 weeks that will not be on the treadmill so I'm going to have to get myself outside at least a couple times before that! But it's 14 (feels like 3!) and dark and... so many excuses. Looks like our daytime highs are going to be in the upper 30's all next week (heat wave!), but the overnight temps are still kind of chilly.

Tonight is dinner out night. We're planning to go to Oliva, which was the busy/popular restaurant we saw next to the flop restaurant we went to last week. It has some good reviews online, and I admit to being very curious about the dish The Imam Fainted (check out the dinner menu).

Hope you all have a great Friday!

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Photo caption Thursday

I see this poor bike every time I go downstairs and do the laundry.

Your mission: Suggest a caption for this picture.

Your prize: My admiration (I don't get goodies from companies to give away :( - although I would happily give you some yogurt because I accidentally bought the wrong kind yesterday)

In 10 minutes or so I'll be able to tell if the treadmill is fixed. Although the repair guys (I guess) replaced the part, when I ran on it a little bit after they left I thought it felt about the same. Then again I was wearing my work clothes and I'd just done a killer spin class, so maybe my perception was inaccurate. The other reason I'm not sure that it's fixed is that repair guy #1 tried to run on it at 6 mph and said, "Yeah, I think it feels like a 6. It's going pretty quick." Which is the PROBLEM because a 10 min mile should feel easy- not quick- which is why I think that 6mph is really closer to a 9 min mile than a 10 min mile. Anyway, I think I've figured out that my treadmill seems to run about .5 mph faster than other treadmills. If it's not fixed, I'm going to use that as a sort of conversion between my treadmill and "real running". I asked treadmill guys if there was anything else that we could do if I still felt like it wasn't working right, and they said no- some treadmills are just faster/slower than others. So I'll continue to go by effort on mine, which is what I've been doing for the last few weeks anyway. I'm still really happy to have it, but I figured since we had the warranty it was worth pursuing any possible mechanical problems.

Whew... long paragraph. Today is another normal day. Work and tonight is cleaning night, which is good because I dropped a crockpot full of sauce on the floor last night. Oops. Edited to say: Not that I just left the sauce there, but I need to actually mop.

Another question- Do any of you do a lot of shopping at Costco? We have one, but it's waaaaayyyy on the very outskirts of town. BUT, I feel like we're spending $$$$ on produce and meat that might be better to buy at someplace like Costco. Do they carry other healthy stuff? I'm guessing so because bloggers like Mama Pea and HEAB shop there. But my image of Costco is that it's rows of sugar cereal and hot dogs. Also, we don't have much storage room so that's an issue. Any devoted Costco shoppers want to give me the 411?

Wednesday, February 24, 2010


That was a picture of baby hedgehogs yesterday, courtesy of The Daily Squee. The problem with that site is that you have to wade through a lot of lame pictures:

Exhibit A)

Okay, great, I've seen a cat before.

To get to the good stuff:

The secret is that D. is the one who is actually into this stuff a lot more than me, so every once in awhile I'll hear, "Hey! I've got some good squee for you." from the other room and I can check it out without having to waste time on a picture of someone's cat laying next to their other cat. Seen it.

Let's see... I'm going to spinning this morning and then I'm going to remember (I hope) to come back home to let the treadmill fixin' guy in to replace the speed sensor. We actually had someone out a few weeks ago who replaced the circuit board but had the whole thing back together before he told me he didn't replace the speed sensor. Huh? So I said I'd give it a try and call back if I thought it was still running fast. Well, it is. For example. I can run 7mph on the treadmill at the gym (any gym- this is true at UW and at my in-law's gym in TN) or outside for awhile. It's about my tempo pace so it's not easy but it's do-able. On my treadmill 7mph with no incline is an all out sprint. So hooooopefully when they replace the speed sensor it will feel more normal.

The other exciting thing that happened yesterday is that I got to look at my retinal photographs. Evidently I have a tiny cup (where the optic nerve comes in- this is a good thing), and a blonde macula (not bad or good- just that blonde people tend to have a lighter colored macula). I get to keep the slides, but I have no idea what I will do with them, haha.

Otherwise things are normal city. Hope you all have a great Wednesday.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010


Just one of those days when I don't have much to say. Run, work, laundry, dinner, groceries, and this

Monday, February 22, 2010

Back at it

The weekend always flies by. I wish I had the Monday optimism of EE, but at least I'm feeling rested and prepared for another week. I have a new project at work, which will hopefully be interesting, and two that are being resurrected, which will hopefully go smoothly.

But honestly, I'm not feeling super motivated to do anything. I know exactly what the problem is. February. Winter needs to end. I know there's probably only about 3 more good weeks of winter and things should start- at least periodically- warming up. I want to run OUTSIDE, but there's 3 inches of new snow on the sidewalks and roads, and there's mystery ice under it. And also, it's cold. It's not COLD, but it's still- the teens are cold enough.

Le sigh. Okay, time to get over it. I need to give myself a swift kick in the pants. Time to get back on the real treadmill and the life treadmill. I'm sure I'll feel better once I start moving.

Hope you have a good Monday, all.

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Oatmeal Crack

It's so nice to feel rested and refreshed on Sunday morning. Other than fixing my mittens (which got big holes in the thumbs- what?), practicing piano and running 6mi, I did nothing of consequence yesterday. I watched some Olympics, finished 1/8 of an afghan, had a nice dinner out with D at Tex Tubbs, and finished the evening off with a scoop of ice cream from The Chocolate Shoppe.

This morning we're going to 9:00am church then back home for brunch because we are DONE with 10:45 meetings (yay!). Before I went to bed last night I put together overnight crockpot oatmeal (recipe courtesy of J+A), which D has seen referred to on the internet as oatmeal crack because it's really good. The rest of the day will involve fridge cleaning, afghan making, Olympics watching, piano practicing, baked ziti making (?), yoga posing, and youth group.

Hope you all have a great Sunday!

Saturday, February 20, 2010

You win some...

Well, Asian Express was a bust. We were under the impression that it was a sit-down restaurant, but it was really a take out place with a table. As far as I can tell, only one woman was working there (both up front and in the kitchen). The food was okay, but not what we were expecting. Oh well. At least we have leftovers for dinner. There was a Italian/Mediterranean place next to it that looks promising (because there were actually people eating there).

The other bust is running outside. Even though it's not snowing now, we got a few inches last night and nothing is plowed. I'm waiting until before lunch to run so maybe I'll change my mind before then, but probably not. It's not actually very cold out, but I'm still afraid of slipping and falling. What I really ought to do is put on my grippers and just take it slow and easy. I'm really not pumped up about running inside again today.

Although when I checked the weather forecast a few days ago, it was calling for

it's now calling for

today through Wednesday with a winter storm warning for Sunday night. Fun stuff. I think we've gotten more snow this February (at least snow more times) than the rest of the winter combined. When will it be OVER????? And the answer is... in May. Gah!

Work was good yesterday in that I finished something that had been hanging over my head for a long time, plus I tweaked a lot of things in the system that should hopefully make this process run more smoothly. And just in time, too, because I have two new "gotta get it done now" projects waiting for me on Monday.

So back to today. I'm planning a chill day with piano, yoga, running a little later, some Olympics watching and blanket crocheting perhaps?, and talking to mom and dad. The usual Saturday suspects. Have a great Saturday, all.

Friday, February 19, 2010

Surprise long run

Yesterday I got on the treadmill to do my run, and I was feeling pretty good so I decided, "What the heck, I've got time. Let's do 10 miles." And I did. I've kind of been mentally dreading doing a long run this week (not sure why) so I figured if I was motivated, I should take advantage of the situation. Glad I've got that checked off the list.

I got another pleasant surprise getting a Sunshine Award from Running Diva Mom.

Thanks so much! I need all the sunshine I can get to make it through the rest of the winter. Running Diva Mom, you must not have made it on to my Google Reader when I made the switch from Sage (thanks a lot, Firefox), but you're there now!

Otherwise life's pretty normal. Hopefully I'll get a lot done at work today so I can slide into the weekend without anything hanging over my head. Tonight we're planning to go to a Chinese restaurant called Asia Express. D. heard about it through the computer science list serv, our most trusted resource for all things Chinese and Indian, so hopefully it will be pretty good. There's no website, though :(. I always like to check out menus before I go somewhere.

I also want to go to the craft store tonight. I'm finally feeling ready to do something crafty again after my Christmas ornament marathon in November/December. Don't tell anyone, but I'm planning to make an afghan for a coworker who will leave in the summer of 2011. She's been a great friend to me and a big source of support doing the whole research thing. I know it seems premature to start on it now, but I tend to work on projects in fits and starts so 1.5 years for a blanket is probably about right.

Hope you all have a great Friday.

Thursday, February 18, 2010


Don't let anyone find out, but I think I've finally almost dug myself out from under a huge pile of confusing data requests and projects that must be done NOW so I can finally spend some time focusing on my own projects. I spent yesterday finishing up some data requests that weren't *too* bad/time consuming, AND I was able to pass off a data request that probably would have been a bear to our new statistician (thanks, K!- if by some freakish chance you ever find this). Even though these things are not the most important part of my job, it feels great to finish them and check them off the list. So the question today is... do I dedicate it to working on an important project just in case I get dumped on again (I already know about something that's coming down the pike, just not sure when), or do I completely finish another "easy" project that's been hanging out in the queue for far too long? I'm leaning toward the latter because I just want it to be DONE rather than smiling up at me, saying "Hi, I'm still here!" every time I look at my project list. So yeah... if I could get that done... and the "bad eye" selection done... and the final nevus table done... before I have any other data requests... I'll be golden.

Spinning was good yesterday. I think I'm back to feeling 100% energetic again. This morning should be 7mi on the treadmill.

The other exciting accomplishment yesterday was I made it through the day without drinking soda (but not without coffee *shudder*). I did chew a little gum, but it wasn't too bad. I like soda, and I like gum, but I need to face the facts (for like the third time) that they seem to bother my stomach. Actually, I don't notice it too much when I'm drinking/chewing gum on a regular basis, but when I quit I feel a lot better. So recently I've been having some stomach issues, and I've decided to quit again. It's a little hard psychologically, but because I continue my caffeine stream I never feel bad when I quit. Oh Diet Mt. Dew... you're so good to me... you're so bad for me.

And that's about it. Have a good Thursday, everyone!

Wednesday, February 17, 2010


Thanks for all the "get well" wishes yesterday. I'm definitely feeling better today. Maybe not 100%, but good enough to resume all normal activities. I'm up early and am planning to go to spinning this morning, then work, piano lesson, finish laundry, leftover beef stew for dinner, and a grocery shopping trip.

The work potluck was good yesterday, mostly because I'm down to one serving of chili that I'm taking for lunch today. Yay for coworkers who willingly eat leftovers.

That's pretty much all I've got. Anyone else think all winter Olympic sports can be divided into two categories a)Really dangerous (ski jump/luge/moguls) b)Really strange (curling)?

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Unscheduled rest day

Ah the URD. No one likes them... I haven't taken one in ages... but today it's time to turn in my "get out of running free" card. I don't feel horrible. I'm still going to work. But I don't feel very good either. I have that joint ache, headache, stomach-ickiness thing if that's what's going around. Obviously I feel good enough to get up to use the computer, but I felt bad enough to stay home from our small group meeting, which is something I really enjoy. Plus my run yesterday was not very good. I know trying to get back on the treadmill- especially to do my long run- would be counterproductive. We'll see how I feel this afternoon/tomorrow.

Today we're having a Mardi Gras potluck at work, which I'm using as an excuse to offload the ice cream tub worth of veggie chili I have leftover from the Super Bowl party. Otherwise not much else is going on. We have the church "family meeting" tonight, which is supposed to be a review of the last 10 years and layout the vision for the future. We've only been there for a year, and there were some major changes that happened in the years right before we came, so it should be interesting.

Hope you all have a good Tuesday.

Monday, February 15, 2010

Rolling along

Time to go back to real life after a fun weekend. The Peking Acrobats were amazing, and dinner/desert were delicious. We hadn't been to Monty's in a long time, and I'd forgotten the axiom (1 piece pie)/(2 people) = happy pancreas and (2 pieces pie)/(2 people) = total sugar rush. Oh well... We especially liked the key lime. It had a really nice bite to it. Unfortunately I was in a food coma when I got home and went to bed (to read!) at 7pm and was asleep by 8pm.

But now it's time to return to normal life. I woke up this morning feeling... not really sick... but not so awesome either. There's a lot of stuff going around, and I hope I don't have any of it lurking in my system waiting to take me down. I slept a lot this weekend, and now it's making me paranoid that I'm coming down with who knows what. Anyway, the plan is to continue doing normal stuff and hope the funk goes away. I've got a 7mi treadmill run planned + work + church small group tonight.

Have a great Monday, all.

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Happy Valentines Day

Cute, eh? This was my Valentines card from D that I got last night because he's not so great at keeping secrets :). For two people who aren't into holidays that much, I feel like we're "doing" a lot for one of the sillier ones. It's more like we decided to do some things that happened to fall on Valentines day rather than we tried to make plans for today. First we have church and our membership interviews (YAY for being almost done with membership class). Then we're going to see the Peking Acrobats at 3pm and to Monty's Blue Plate Diner for dinner and desert.

I also want to send a special birthday shout out to my brother-in-law J who is 25 (I think...) today.

Yesterday was filled with phone conversation, reading, sleep, cleaning out my sewing/craft stuff (which has been on my to-do list for AGES), and speed skating (crazy wipe out in the finals!).

Have a great Sunday all.

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Worth it

I'm tired and sore... I'm not sure that none toes froze off... but going to the dance was totally worth it. Yeah, there were a lot of high schoolers getting one more wear out of a prom dress, but there were older people too, and we went with a group so we brought our own party.

So now you know I ended up choosing dress D.

We started with dinner at the Great Dane and headed over for the dance around 8:30pm. It was a little lame until the band started playing at 9pm. The music at all of my high school dances were done by a DJ, but having the interactive element with the band made it a lot more fun. Plus because most the members in the band actually do the music at church on Sunday, you felt like you "knew" them. They played a good mix of old and new stuff to keep everybody happy. At 11pm, we were all pretty tired and ready to call it a night. Why do so many songs require jumping?

Now I'm taking this morning slow and easy. I slept in until 7:30am and am not planning to run until before lunch. Yes, I like to keep myself on a regular schedule, but I'm working on convincing myself sleeping late and running late one weekend morning won't ruin everything. Otherwise this weekend I have some errands and chores to do, but I want to take at least a little chill out time. Yoga and piano are also on the list. I think part of my problem is that (and I'm sure I'm not alone) I have a hard time transitioning from work mode to weekend mode. It's hard to get back in the swing of things on Monday, but by Friday I'm still ready to work the next day so I'm feeling a little anxiety about all the things on my work "to do" list that are waiting for me Monday. BUT I know that mixing work and weekend time is counterproductive. Let work time be for work and rest/recharge time be for resting and getting ready for the week to come.

Well, I'm going to go make a good-faith effort at relaxing + being productive. Happy Saturday, all.

Friday, February 12, 2010


Our exam site visit yesterday was pretty cool. We got to see and experience some of the vision testing equipment that is being used, have retinal photos taken (sorry, MM, no pictures for the blog (even though I think that would be totally cool)- we do only film photos), and watch two patient exams. I definitely feel like I have a better sense of what goes on in the exams and also the accuracy of some of the data. Sometimes we get wrapped up in being able to give the answer to a question like "Mean age at time of first cancer" to the second decimal place when in fact patients answer questions like that with "Oh, I was in my 40's... or maybe 50's".

Even with a "break" day yesterday, I'm glad it's Friday. I've got 5 or 6mi on the treadmill, and I really need to try to squeeze in some yoga after work. I've been pretty bad about doing it this week, but I think it really does help keep me from getting stiffness and aches and pains from running. Tonight is dinner at The Great Dane downtown with our church small group and then the dance. It's going to be pretty chilly so with me luck with my dress. Hopefully I'll have my act together and take/post pictures. Hope everyone has a great Friday!

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Field Trip

As you may or may not know, I work as a statistician for a group that does two big population studies on eye disease. We are in an exam phase for one of the studies, and today a coworker and I are driving up to see some exams and have retinal photographs taken. Sound be pretty neat- I'll have an opportunity to see a picture of the back of my eye- and it'll be nice to get out of the office and do something different for a day.

Anti-Valentines Day spinning was maybe less angst-y than it could have been, but there was definitely an Alanis Morissette track. Still a good workout as always. Today will be 6 or 7 miles on the treadmill.

I got home late-ish last night because of piano lessons, and we decided to grab a quick dinner out while we ran errands so no southwest mac n cheese. I'll either make that or chicken tikka masala tonight depending on how fast I want dinner done when I get back from the study site visit.

Otherwise I'm looking forward to the weekend. Between the church dance on Friday and seeing the Peking Acrobats on Sunday afternoon, it should be pretty fun. Have a great Thursday, all.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Always moving, never going anywhere

That's the story of my workouts for almost a month now! The last time I ran outside was when I was visiting my parents in FL from Jan 8-12- unless you count numerous sprints for the bus. This morning will be cycling in place, which I actually prefer to cycling on a road because there is music and no cars. Today's theme is supposed to be "anti-Valentines Day". Should be entertaining. The guy who teaches the Wednesday class always has a good music selection.

Yesterday's long run was not as peppy as last week's, but I stuck with it and got it done. Again, I really like doing my long run early in the week. It doesn't seem like it takes up much more time than a regular run on a Tuesday, but doing my long run on Saturday- maybe because I'm already getting up later- seems to eat up the whole morning. Plus I think it helps with the "I did a long run so I deserve to eat a bunch of junk food" urges I sometimes get because- yes, I eat more on my long run day- but it's more likely to be real food than a sundae.

Work and the conference call were less stressful than I'd imagined. I still have a "pressing" project I feel like will never end, but I'm fairly confident I'll have it finished this morning so I can move onto the 1000 other requests I've been ignoring to finish this. Oh! the other exciting thing is that I got to see a copy of my first journal article that will be published. All that stuff is proprietary so I can't share it on the blog (because I know you are dying to read about blood pressure and retinal vessel measurement), but it's definitely exciting for me.

Otherwise I have my third piano lesson tonight, and I'm planning to make Southwestern Mac n Cheese from An Edible Mosaic, which I saw first on Saran's blog. I have a feeling this will be a huge hit.

Stay warm out there all- and stay safe if you are in the Mid Atlantic bracing for Snowmageddon 10 or whatever number blizzard you are on for this year. Have a great Wednesday, all.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Let it snow...

Thanks to everyone who voted on dresses yesterday. My current top two choices are A) and D), but it looks like B was very popular, too. C really is more of a spring/summer dress. I have the winners hanging up in my closet to get the wrinkles out by Friday so I have all the options available to me. This exercise made me a little sad because I thought "Oh, I have so many cute dresses, but I can't really wear any of them for months without the risk of dying of exposure."

I had a good 7 mi treadmill run yesterday, and I'm planning to do my long run this morning.

Otherwise it's just another busy day at work. We have a conference call this afternoon that everyone is worried about. Hopefully the stress level will go down after that.

Well, I better get it together so I can fit 10 mi in before I have to leave for work. Happy Tuesday, all!

Monday, February 8, 2010

Fashion show

I think last night marks the first time I've ever watched (meaning paid attention to) a Super Bowl- or an NFL game for that matter- all the way through. Although I didn't have any loyalty to either team, I guess it was kind of cool that the Saints won with the whole "historically really bad/ Hurricane Katrina" back story. The commercials? I wasn't blown away.

So now we're back to life, back to reality. I'm planning on 7mi on the treadmill. We were supposed to just have little flurries this morning, but there's a couple new inches of snow on the ground now. I was going to try going to the other, less crowded gym, but I'm not sure I want to take the car out because the roads aren't plowed yet. Otherwise it's just going to be a regular busy day at work.

Want to help me pick what I'm going to wear to the dance on Friday? Here are your choices (yeah, I know the lighting isn't great):





As a reminder, this is for a dance our church is putting on. It's at an actual nice place and not in the gym. I've never been, but I've been told it's appropriate to wear a "party dress". The outside temperature will probably be in the 20s. I have an idea of what I want to wear, but I'd appreciate your opinions. Lay it on me in the comments.

Hope you all have a great Monday.

Sunday, February 7, 2010


Yep, that's what 2.5 hours of couch time on Saturday afternoon will do for you. I hate to "waste" my Saturday afternoon sleeping or reading, but I always find that if I give in and chill out for a little bit, I feel sooooo much better. In fact I felt so much better I cleaned up all the kitchen cabinets and wiped down all the easy to miss surfaces like the top of the fridge. And I'm ready to go and in a much better mood today.

Today we have church, our last membership class (yay!) and the youth Super Bowl party. I'm also planning on getting in some yoga, piano practice, dusting, vacuuming, and going through my sewing/craft stuff. And I don't feel any resentment toward that list. YAY for rest.

Otherwise not much is going on. No run today. I feel energetic enough to do one, but I'm not sure my body is ready to handle 5 days in a row with my increased mileage. Plus my run yesterday, even though it was slow, felt unusually hard. I just need to throw myself into yoga and cleaning, and I won't feel so lumpy.

Hope you all have a great Sunday!

Saturday, February 6, 2010


Is hopefully not what I will be today. I was up until 11pm last night hanging out and playing games with friends, and now I'm back up even earlier than normal weekday time to run and get ready for our class. I think I should get some points from someone for this.

The class is called The Old Testament: Getting the Big Picture, and it's being taught be one of the junior pastors at the church who is finishing his PhD in Jewish studies. Don't know any more than that. I think it has the potential to be interesting, but sometimes in a class like that you'll get a participant who gets fixated on some minor detail and asks 3498374 questions and you just can't get beyond it. But hopefully that won't happen.

Otherwise today is a normal chore/catch-up day- dust, vacuum, phone calls, grocery store, Target, piano etc. Hopefully it will not involve a nap, but I can't rule out the possibility. Also, (thanks for the dress advice earlier, btw) I might pull out the dresses I have and do a little fashion show to see if there's something I already have that I want to wear. The workout will be 5 or 6mi on the treadmill and either yoga here or maybe going to the hot yoga class.

Last night's dinner out was at Swagat. D found out about it through his computer science list serv so we figured it was probably pretty good. And it was. I asked for my dish medium spicy, and it was in fact medium spicy rather than totally bland, which seems to be what is considered medium spicy in most of the Midwest. I got the shahi navratan korma: nine fresh garden vegetables cooked in a creamy sauce with almonds, cashews, raisins and spices, and we shared some naan bread. Very tasty.

Hope everyone on the East Coast affected by the blizzard is staying safe and warm. Have a good Saturday, all.

Friday, February 5, 2010


I'm up a little early so I can run a little early and be at work a little early for a conference call with collaborators in Iceland. I thought about trying to get out of it, but then I decided I'd save my "Get out of a conference call free" card for sometime later.

My run yesterday was pretty good, but definitely not as peppy as Tuesday's. The plan for today is 5mi easy... maybe stretched out to 6mi depending on how I'm feeling. The original plan for this week was to do 37 or 38 miles, but I may scale back to 35 (which is what I would have if I did 5 today and 5 tomorrow). I'm thinking that 35 miles would be a good place to hang out for a few weeks before I bump things up rather than trying to bump all the way up to 40mpw right now. I want to get there before I do the 1/2 marathon in May, but 40 is a lot of miles on the treadmill... especially when early Saturday commitments are making me do my long runs before work during the week.

Thanks for your kind comments about being tried. I knew I was not alone, but it was nice to hear other people say it :). I'm actually feeling much better this morning, leading me to think it wasn't so much a sleep problem as a "post long run fatigue" problem. Focus at work yesterday was waaaaayyyy better, and I'm hoping for more of the same today. I feel so much better at the end of the day when I know I was really productive. That's the way I want to feel entering the weekend.

Last night's dinner was also kind of pretty. I made tilapia sandwiches from a Cooking Light recipe.

I guess I could have gotten a little more up close and personal with it so you could see what it really looked like. I need some serious practice at this food photography thing.

Tonight we're planning to go out to dinner (Indian maybe?) and to game night at a friend's house. Tomorrow will be another early morning doing a seminar at church about The Old Testament (some people have an inner child, D and I have an inner old person).


Thursday, February 4, 2010


Although I am (fortunately) not on some crazy sleepless schedule like Sara, I don't have the super human ability like Matt to stay up late every night and still get up at 5am. I love being up early, but it's pretty much impossible to insure that I'll be asleep 8 hours before 4:50am (really 4:30am when the alarm goes off for the first time- not that I even hear it anymore), and the ball of accumulated sleep debt continues to pick up a little more as it rolls through each night. So it's Thursday, and I'm starting to feel tired. And (unless I can get out of it, which is a distinct maybe) I have to get up earlier tomorrow to run before a conference call at work and at my normal weekday time Saturday so we can go to a class D wants to attend that starts at 8:30am. Now I'm sounding whiny. I'm lucky that I have a normal 8-5 job that doesn't interfere with sleep time, but there's so much to do everyday (and that I want to do everyday) sleep just gets nudged back, and I feel myself getting just a little more easily tired/cranky/frustrated every day with no end in sight because it's not some temporary schedule... it's my whole life... and I don't even have kids yet! I don't know how parents do it.

Anyway, I had a nice recovery day at spinning. Next week the class is going to have an "anti-Valentines Day" theme, which should be fun. Today will be 8mi on the treadmill with some fast stuff near the end perhaps.

Dinner last night was finally worth photographing. We had shrimp tacos, which I think has been featured in every Cooking Light since the magazine's first edition.
We ate these guys with salad and the very last of a bag of tortilla chips left over from regulation college football season.

Work effort yesterday? About a C. Not horrible, not great, and I know I really could do better. I've made a list of my "must do before the weekend" tasks that I want to have done so I can enter the weekend with a clear conscience. Hopefully that will motivate me to get those checked off.

And that's all I've got. Happy Thursday!

Wednesday, February 3, 2010


That was what my long run was yesterday. It was only 10 miles, but it's only the second time I've done a double digit run since (I think) last March. Unlike on Saturday, I felt really strong and relaxed the whole way through, and I didn't have that post long run fatigue either. I felt totally normal for the rest of the day. Also, I like doing long runs during the week. I know I couldn't get away with doing an 18 miler on a Tuesday before work, but once the sun starts coming out earlier, I think I could definitely get up to 12, which is a fine distance for a long run since I'm not planning on doing any races longer than a 1/2 marathon. Whew. It feels so good to have running go well again. Especially after last year.

Unfortunately I did not "be all I could be" at work yesterday. It's not that I spent the whole day stalking people on Facebook or anything- I had a productive meeting and got a concrete sense of what I needed to do for a project, and I figured out how to make a new kind of graph in SAS, but I didn't really focus the way I should have. I had a really good week for focusing last week, and I know I can't be 100% on every day. Maybe the run fatigued my brain more than I realized. Anyway, I had some insight on what I need to get done today over night. Hopefully things will go better.

Last, I need some fashion advice. Our church is having a dance next Friday night (the 12th), and I have no idea what to wear. I was told that women mostly wear party dresses although you see a range of everything from "I wore this to Homecoming" to "I wore this to football practice". Note, this is not just for the high schoolers, it's for everyone, and we are going with some other couples from our young married group. I looked at the Ann Taylor Loft website because I have some gift cards and 20% off coupons there, but I didn't see anything that matched what I *think* I'm looking for. Any suggestions for good places to shop for such a thing? So many stores are coming out with spring clothes, but it is definitely not spring here (although it looks like the weather won't be too bad that day- forecast is for highs in the 20s).

Well, gotta get ready for spinning. Have a great Wednesday, all.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Snow, snow, snow

Today is a good day to remind myself about the good things about snow:

1. It's going to cover up all the nasty gray/brown crunchy snow that's been hanging around.
2. It can't snow unless it's (relatively) warm.

Ummm... that's what I've got for now.

It started snowing yesterday evening, and it's still going pretty strong. In fact, it looks like we're expected to get snow all week. Other than the monster snowfall we had in December, we've had a dry winter, so I guess we were due.

Hopefully this will not impact my plan to do my long run at the gym this morning. I think Tuesday and Thursday are the least busy days normally, and hopefully we won't get a big influx of snow avoiders. At least snow avoiders who want to use the treadmill. Elliptical snow avoiders are welcome.

Otherwise not too much exciting is going on. I finished SSSM yesterday and am planning to take a break from book reading so I can get to my Runner's World and January's issue of The Smithsonian. My abstract for the conference was officially sent at midnight last night. We'll see what happens with that. Last night's dinner was shrimp fra diavolo, which was pretty good. I don't know what my resistance is to taking my own pictures...

Stay warm and dry out there!

Monday, February 1, 2010

Resolution Review

We are one month into the new year, I thought it was time to look back on my new year's resolutions and take stock of how things are going.

1. Put stuff away after I use it- This one has been going really well. Our apartment doesn't get dirty as much as it gets messy, and having a neat space is so so so much more relaxing than having a big pile of clothes on my dresser or sink full of dishes waiting for the end of the day. I'm very happy with this one.

2. Focus more at work- This has also been better. I think listening to music helps when I have to do more of the "boring" stuff as does not checking the internet when I have little bits of down time when a program runs. It's better to have distinct breaks rather than this constant flow between "working" and "break time".

3. Pushing myself- I think this has also been good. I've been doing a lot more speed work and pushing myself to try faster paces than before. Not so much variety with the food ('tis the season), but I have made a fair number of new recipes.

4. Have more fun with more people. This one is... okay. We have done social things but no real inviting. I need to get out of the habit of always waiting to be invited to do stuff.

5. Take more pictures- BAD. I don't know why I'm averse to this, but I know I'm going to look back and wish I had more pictures of this time of my life. I need to get on it!

6. Stay in touch- Hard to say. We saw a lot of people over the holidays so I don't feel "out of touch" right now. We'll see how I do in the coming months.

7. Music- I'm taking piano lessons!!!!!

8. Waste less time- I'd say this was a B effort, too. For the most part I've been coming home, doing yoga, and cooking without any blah on the couch time, but I have my moments. Especially after 7pm.

9. Read real books- Um... I think I've read two things that can be considered a "real book" so far in 2010. And I'm almost done with Sense and Sensibility and Seamonsters. I think I'll always have a place in my heart for trashy reading. I just have to keep it respectable some of the time.

10. Blog- I have been posting almost every day, but I haven't done anything to make the layout less ugly. I know I need help, but I'm afraid I don't want to pay the going rate for someone to make this thing be attractive. It's on my "someday/maybe" list.

And that's that. Other than picture taking, which gets a big F, I think it's been going well.

I'm planning on a 7mi run with 10x1min fast here in a few minutes. This week's goal is 37mi with a 10 mi long run on Thursday or Friday. Hope you all have a great Monday!