Pippa apparently got the memo about Santa being scary as shit and Truman finally out grew that fear. And yes, I did make Pippa take two pictures despite her fear because nothing brings me joy like a screaming child on Santa's lap.
Despite how happy he looks about meeting Santa, Truman would like you to know that he doesn't need Santa to come to his house, even if he is bringing gifts.
Confession time: I've pretty much let myself go. That's putting it nicely; the truth is I've been eating crap lately and in excessive quantities with no stop button. If it's consumable, I consume it. I've put on weight, some of my skinny jeans are far from fitting, and well, I don't want to be seen naked. Read that as you will.
I have no excuse for this other than lately I've had this food void that I can't fill. It's not a craving exactly as I don't want any one specific food, I just want food. I thought maybe I wanted something carb heavy but when I indulge in that, it's not satisfying. I thought I wanted a hunk of beef, and while our steaks were delicious, they also weren't satisfying. Cookies? Meh. Egg Salad? Good not great. Spinach and Artichoke dip? Super tasty but after it I still wanted something else.
I read somewhere that if you think you're hungry ask yourself if steamed fish and broccoli sound good. If they do then go ahead and eat, if not then move on because you're not really hungry. I love this idea but my problem is that steamed fish does sound good. But I know I would eat it and still want something else, something different after it. I mean, what's up with this?
Did I mention that I'm also not ever really hungry? Like I just eat because I know I need to eat and once I start I can't stop. "Hey look, a tin of butter cookies! I should eat one because they're festive and shit. Hell, I ate one I might as well keep going." Y'all, it's so weird that despite having an IUD and jparks having had a vasectomy, I still took a pregnancy test because what else could cause this food hole? It came back negative probably because of the lack of wanting to be seen naked.
Starting in early January I'm going to try a round of Whole 30 with some other internet people and see if that helps reset this weirdness I have happening. If it doesn't, I don't really know what I'll do. Wire my jaw shut? Is that still an option? Do you see a dentist for it or is it a cosmetic procedure now?
Since leaving New Orleans after Katrina, I've not kept it secret that I, some day, would like to move back. I understand that it's not reasonable to think we'll do that while the kids are young because nothing sounds more torturous than hurricane evacuations with two small kids, but I kind of assumed maybe we would retire there? Don't ask for specifics of my plan, I really haven't given it much thought.
I was back in New Orleans last week for a gathering of women (essentially a girls' weekend away with 60 people. Which, yes 60 people is a lot of people for me to scare into not liking me but I was up to the task) and I ended up getting super sick. It was definitely allergies and I definitely felt like death was chasing me around the Quarter asking to see my boobs in exchange for a few more minutes of life. Eventually I went to a CVS where I handed the pharmacist my license and said "I don't know what I want but you'll need this for whatever you're about to sell me." I walked out with Mucinex-D, a neti pot, some Benadryll, and Fritos. Unrelated to the story, the pharmacist told me the Mucinex-D was non drowsy so I took a dose before the Friday night party. I then spent that party sitting in a leather chair trying not to drool on myself.
I spent most of the weekend drugged to the point where I thought even having one beer would win me a ride in an ambulance and a pumped stomach but I never once got any relief from the congestion. I slept a total of maybe 6 hours over three nights because when I laid down the pressure built up and I didn't want my face to blow off. By Sunday morning I was texting a friend "I hate everything" because I just honestly did. I wanted to go back to Austin where I still suffer from allergy issues but at least drugs keep everything in check.
I think this trip has really made me reconsider my plans to move us back and now I'm a little sad panda about it. I'm one of those people that abandoned the city when it needed people the most but at least I could justify it in my mind with the thought of "some day I'll be back!" But now? I don't think I can do it. I can't move somewhere knowing how sick I'll be on a daily basis. It hurts my heart to accept it, but I don't think New Orleans is in the cards for us anymore. And it's not that I think the city is awaiting our return with a parade all queued up and Drew Brees waiting to hug us, but ugh, it stills hurts.
So there you have it, I went away for a fun girls' weekend and had my future plans crushed. Wheee, I'm super fun! You totally want to invite me to parties, I'm not at all a Debbie Downer.
(I am, however, very nice. Ask anyone that was part of that weekend, they'll all tell you. I'm totally fucking nice.)
Have you ever gone a vacation that is equal parts relaxing but also equal parts "Thank god I picked up a bottle of Xanax from my doctor before we left home"? Because that is the exact kind of vacation we went on recently and I'm honestly still trying to process the whole experience.
Last Friday we left for Jamaica, which put us flying into south Florida where Hurricane Sandy was sitting off the coast. I'm a nervous flyer to begin with but tell me we're going to be flying into hurricane strength winds and you're going find me shitting my pants while I cry in a corner. I did what any reasonable person would do, I ran directly to my doctor and asked for whatever anxiety medicine she was willing to give me.
I was secretly hoping that our flights would be cancelled and we would have to vacation somewhere else but that wasn't in the cards. One very bumpy flight and a half a Xanax that did nothing for me later, we were in Ft. Lauderdale. I decided I needed to pull out the big guns for our flight out of Florida so I Dramamined myself and drooled my way through the bumps and drops.
We landed in Jamaica and faced an island that was wrecked by Sandy. The road to our hotel was barely one lane wide in spots, covered in downed power lines and trees. Our hotel was running on a generator with limited gas and no idea when a truck would be able to bring more. They had food but were worried about supplies running low. It was an adventure.
Despite all of this, every person we met in Jamaica was amazing, warm, and welcoming. The island was being repaired all around us and everyone seemed to be in good spirits about the situation. How could we not relax and enjoy our trip when everyone around us was so calm? Also, the occasional Red Stripe helped me forgot our lack of wifi and inability to video chat with the kids.
It was a great vacation with more than enough drinks, naps, and meals. I would say we came home refreshed but the trip home was a nightmare of flight changes, hotel changes, and awful car rides. But despite all of that, I would do the trip again in a heartbeat. Jamaica was the perfect combination of just enough things to do so we weren't bored, but not so many options that we felt guilty napping for large parts of the day.
In general I'm a pretty smart person. I'm also overly cautious and a bit of a worrier. It seems these traits extend to all areas of my life except for running. When it comes to that activity I like to throw myself at it without much thought or training but armed with lots of enthusiasm. While that method worked for me twiceearlier this year, you would think I would know better than try to run a marathon, 26.2 miles, without completing a training program. You would be wrong.
Sunday morning I dragged myself out of bed at 4am and headed to Union Square to join 25,000 other people to run a shit ton. I looked surprisingly happy even though it was still dark and I was about to act on one of the stupidest decisions I have ever made.
It all started back in March when I decide after running a couple of half marathons that I was ready to go all the way. 13.1 miles seemed too easy! I was ready for marathon glory! With that I joined a running group and I stuck with it for a few months. Then four months before my scheduled marathon I dropped out of my marathon training group for a variety of reasons ranging from medical to I just didn't like it. I continued to run but definitely nothing close to the plan I was assigned and not with any kind of regularity. I lived in a bit of denial about the impending marathon and just ran whatever distance I felt like. As September came to a close I decided "eh, what the hell, let's do this marathon!"
I won't lie, this experience was equal parts amazing and awful. I felt great for about 18 miles, despite hills, misty rain, and a stranger running up and kicking me in the shin. I felt like death when I hit mile 19 and around mile 21 I actually sat down on the curb. But it all was fine again at mile 23, when I figured out that running actually felt better than walking.
When I sat down on the curb I really thought I would sit there and figure out how to direct Whitney to me so I could hop in her car and go home. I had given up. But then I took out my phone and checked my text messages and @ replies on Twitter and I was overwhelmed. The outpouring of support from everyone was so much that all of a sudden I knew I couldn't stop. It sounds so stupid but the internet believed in me and knew I could finish so I picked myself up and started moving again. Who am I to disappoint the internet?
My goal time was 6 hours which is ridiculously slow but realistic for my lack of training. I finished in 5:54:36
Thank you internet. Thank you for believing in me and pushing me across that finish line. I couldn't have done it without you. Everyone can have a turn wearing the finisher necklace as a thank you, that seems fair as I wouldn't have it without y'all.
When I was pregnant with Pippa I decided we needed to do family/newborn pictures because we had skipped them when Truman was born. I booked a photographer, didn't tell jparks how much anything cost, and hoped the pictures would be worth it. Those pictures are awesome. I decided we would do pictures every year in the two week window between the kids' birthdays and as long as Michele was in the business of taking pictures, she would have to be the photographer.
Due to a change in shooting location we missed that two week window this year by about two weeks, but it was worth it. I couldn't love the results more.
Jparks saw the pictures and said "Whoa, I'm ripped! When did I get so sexy! Look at my back!" Of course he did.
I don't even care that I look like a spaz, I love this
This is so Pippa and Truman. He's hauling ass off in the distance and she's trying to catch him
This is a perfect picture of us.
Y'all, I am the most awkward person in front of the camera but I can't wait to take pictures again next year. It's worth it. You should do it.
I went to California over the weekend for a bachelorette party. On the way there I sat next to a crazy person who sanitized the arm rest and then snapped at me "I cleaned this arm rest, it's mine!" I know this could happen on any airline but I still blame Southwest for it.
I got it in my head that I needed Toms the Thursday before I left so I bought a pair of the ballet flats. I wasn't even through the security line in Austin when the damn shoes had my feet bleeding. Upon arriving in CA I bought a pair of regular Toms and I have mixed feelings about them.
I think I'm too old for them and perhaps not hipster-y enough. But they're so comfortable that I'm starting to not care.
Friday night a small group of us went to a Brazilian meat place which is my dream come true. You flip a card and people with sword-like skewers bring you meat! I had planned to take some pictures and I started to do that but then the landslide of meat happened and I totally forgot. It wasn't until I ate a chicken heart (it was rubbery and that's what got me. I'm an anti-chewy textured foods person) and nearly died at the table that I realized I should have taken a few pictures.
That glass of sparkling wine was delicious and not rubbery at all. Also, it was not Whole30 approved.
I stayed with Whitney. Her house is cute.
Her cats will eat trail mix as well as the bag it came in.
I made Whitney take me to Trader Joe's because I really miss that store. I could have cried when we got there. I also could have used a little common sense because I bought so much stuff that Whitney had to ship a box of things to me. I do have some common sense though because I packed the cookie butter in my luggage and did this when I got home.
Yeah, that's a dark chocolate bar being used as a spoon. I'm a genius.
It's been just over five months since I last gave you a de-fating myself update and I suppose part of the reason I haven't mentioned it is because I really haven't lost much more weight. (I'm about 3 pounds down, which is great but not really earth shattering) I have however, dropped another clothing size and am quickly rounding the corner on dropping another. This means that I'm back into single digit sizes and holy shit, I haven't been there since 2005.
I was probably in the best shape of my life in 2005, just before Hurricane Katrina. I was 25, working out with a trainer, and still had the ability to lose weight just by skipping a night of drinking and avoiding cookies for a couple of days. After Katrina I started eating everything, stopped working out, and never looked back. When we settled in Austin I went on an all gelato diet. I started baking all the time. I laughed if you suggested I visit a gym. It was truly the beginning of the end.
When we moved to California I picked up my activity level some, adding rock climbing and aerial acrobatics to the mix, I might have toned up some, but I never really slimmed down. Probably because I continued to eat all the things. I got pregnant, had Truman, and vowed to lose some weight. I hired a trainer. I worked out five days a week. I lost not a pound. I was still eating all the things.
We moved back to Austin, I got pregnant, had Pippa, and again vowed to lose weight. This time something was different. I don't know if it was because I knew we were done having kids and I finally was going to be 100% in control of my body for the rest of my life or that I had finally hit my weight high point and was just done being fat; whatever it was something in me had clicked and I was ready for change.
In the last few months I've moved away from the calorie restriction that helped me dropped the bulk of my weight and moved into a Paleo diet. I'm surprised I'm here because I was so resistant to Paleo for a very long time. I don't have a real reason for switching to it other than it seemed like a lot of people like it and I was getting bored counting calories and needed a change. In July, about 20 days after I went Paleo, jparks was diagnosed with Celiac's Disease and joined me on the Paleo bandwagon. So far we are both enjoying it.
Obviously I'm not dropping crazy weight like I was in the beginning of the year but I am slimming down. I do barre classes (ya'll, get thee to a barre class! They are challenging, always changing, and effective. jparks takes them with me sometimes and has his ass handed to him by the instructor.) and I run a lot. I've moved on to toning and building muscle now and I think this process might actually be more rewarding than the weight loss portion.
My new year's resolution this year was to never need to make another resolution to lose weight. As my weight/size stands now I feel like I could declare that resolution met.
I'm not sure if you heard or not, but the other night I was involved in a fight with some internet big shots on Twitter. This post isn't necessarily about that because yes, I realize fighting with people online is exactly as dumb as debating with an invisible person in a chair. But I do want to say that I got in trouble for calling someone a moron and saying they are insensitive without directly saying that person's name and now people are doing the exact same thing about me. I want everyone to know that I'm totally okay with this. These folks think I'm an idiot and that's their opinion, they are allowed to think of me what they want. Opinions: you're allowed to have your's and I can have mine!
That being said, I was also involved in a few fights about New Orleans. Specifically I got all hand flappy over people saying New Orleans should have never been rebuilt. I'm going to get bitchy for a second, but if you ever state that opinion I will assume you are a total fucking idiot. If I find out you live in an area that also suffers from natural disasters, chances are I'm going to be blinded with rage. I'm sorry for this. I can't help it.
People seem to think New Orleans should have been left to rot after Katrina and everyone that lived there should have uprooted themselves and created lives in new cities. I can't even begin to understand this thought process. People should abandon their homes and buy new ones in another city? How can they afford this when they still have to pay for their destroyed homes in NOLA? Is everyone but me rich enough to say "Screw my first mortgage, I'm going to buy a new home!"
The fact is that people can not afford to leave NOLA. People depend on that area's Gulf access, swamps, and rivers to make their livelihoods. The estimated income in 2009 (most recent that I could find) was $36,468. I mean, really. You tell me how on that income people can afford to leave their jobs and homes and set up shop somewhere else. Would they like to not worry about hurricanes? Yes, but it's not a worry they can afford to leave behind.
The other thing is that people just don't want to leave that area. NOLA is their home, where their families are, where their history is. NOLA is their heart and soul. The love that people have for New Orleans is hard to understand unless you're from there. We are New Orleans, New Orleans is us.
I'm sorry if I came after you on Wednesday because you said New Orleans shouldn't be rebuilt. I'm sorry that I think you're an idiot. I'm sorry that on the 7 year anniversary of the storm that changed my life forever I got a little defensive. I'm sorry that you said something like that while Issac was hitting New Orleans and I was worried about the safety of my family and friends and I attacked.
If you want to put your money where your mouth is and pay for a family that lost their home to relocate to whatever magic, natural diaster free city you live in, then I will happily sincerely apologize to you. Until then, keep your fucking mouth shut.
Is 32 an appropriate age to go through a midlife crisis? Because a few weeks back I was almost half way through my 32nd year and suddenly consumed with the idea that I needed to do something to make myself seem younger. Cooler. Not so mom-to-two-kids-ish. I happened to have a hair appointment that afternoon and I decided to ask my stylist to bleach my tips and dye them purple. I mean, why not? I'd never had purple hair before (Red hair that was probably a bit closer to purple than red, yes. But straight up purple? No.) and figured if not now, when?
So I asked. And she refused.
Turns out you can't go in for a cut and ask for a dye job because there just isn't time for that kind of ridiculousness. But she also refused in general saying that tips were not really what I wanted. She suggested I book another appointment and let her bleach some streaks hidden under a layer of hair which we could then color. I agreed and went back a month later for my dye job.
And again she refused.
Well, she technically only partially refused. She agreed to go ahead with bleaching some streaks but when it was time to add in some dye, she said she felt like I should really skip the dye and live with the blonde for a little bit. Then she dried my hair and handed me a mirror to check it out. I was unimpressed. Sure, the blonde was neat but it was so hidden and not what I had in mind. But you apparently can't make your hairdresser do something she doesn't want to do, so I went on my way.
I've lived with the blonde for about three weeks now and dammit I still want purple. Here's some of the blonde when you lift up the top layer (Please note my bald spot. I lost so much more hair after Pippa than I did after Truman. Thank god it's growing back)
Holy crap, that's blonde. But once that layer is down, the blonde disappears:
So let me ask you, is it worth the begging I will have to do to get my stylist to dye it purple? The blonde layer goes all the way around my head but really isn't that visible as you can see in the picture. When I run and have my hair in a ponytail I have a pretty awesome racing stripe which makes me want to wear a ponytail all the time. In this picture from a previous post, you can see that sometimes the blonde works it way out into daylight:
Do I beg or not? Is this bad idea jeans at their finest? Do I need to forget about the purple and move on with my old lady life?
I spend a lot of time running. It's my time to clear my head, leave the kids behind, and (I know this sounds crazy) relax. I used to refuse to listen to music while running because it made me very aware of the amount of time that had passed (3 songs at about 3:30 each equals about 10:30 of running. Why do I feel like I'm dying if it's only been 10:30?) but lately I've abandoned the podcasts and gone back to music. (I've done this because I've also abandoned iTunes and I haven't figured out how to listen to podcasts without it. Am dumb. Very dumb.)
This switch back to music has led me to do some stupid things while I run like randomly shouting out lyrics or going from running to doing some kind of spastic dance/run/strut move. It's really quite embarrassing and yet I continue to do it, sometimes even in busy public places like while running past Whole Foods. Or a packed bar downtown. It's really not good although it seems the drunk frat boys like laughing at me.
And now, in case you want to make an ass of yourself too, here are a few of the songs that make me do stupid things.
Down in the Treme, just me and my baby, we're all going crazy! (insert stupid high knees step/strut thing)
Not gonna lie, I sing the whole song. The. Whole. Song.
There's plenty more that make me make an ass of myself, but I think you get the idea. Do you have any songs that really put a bit of pep (or a stupid dance move) in your step while running? Share please, I need to grow my playlist!
"Hey Regan, how's the weight loss going? Also, weren't you doing some kind of Biggest Blogging Loser competition?"
Well friends I'm so glad you asked! (Full disclosure: we're pretending someone asked this. I doubt anyone actually remembers that I'm trying to de-fat myself.)
I was participating in an online competition to lose weight and the whole reason I joined was because I figured having to email my weight to a friend would shame me into being motivated. The competition ended Monday night and, holy crap, I won! Since January I've lost 14% of my body weight and dropped two clothing sizes.
Check it out! (highly unflattering muffin top filled picture ahead)
April 2: (equally unflattering but not due to a muffin top, what what!)
It's funny but despite having to buy new clothes and seeing the numbers on the scale go down, I really couldn't see a difference until I went back and looked at my starting picture. If you're going to start a diet, please take a before picture. Also, make sure you have a good picture of your face. I think I've lost some weight there but it's hard for me to tell in either picture. And take your measurements!
I know I have more to lose and thanks to the win, I'm feeling pretty motivated. I'm also starting to shift my focus onto building muscle and toning which means I might not see such a rapid drop on the scale anymore, but that's okay. As long as I'm becoming less fat, I'm fine if the scale moves slowly.
Winning the competition came with a cash prize which I used to sign up for a full marathon training group. And then, because I'm a worrier, I signed up for the San Antonio marathon because holy hell, what if it sells out! (it won't) So I'll be spending the hottest part of the year running long distances and cursing myself. A smaller ass better be worth it.
Remember that time I "trained" for a half marathon? Yeah, that was a good time. No, really it was such a good time that I signed up for another half marathon and swore this time I was going to train. Hell, the race even had supported training runs, it would be almost impossible for me to not train.
This, of course, means I didn't really train. I went on one long run, 9 miles, and added the other runs to my calendar but didn't actually get up for them. I had my reasons, one time it was raining and I don't run in the rain. One time jparks was out of town and I couldn't leave the kids alone. Another time I was just lazy. While I did skip almost all of the long runs, I did go for a 3 to 5 mile run multiple times each week, so that was more training than before. All of this training led me to think I could easily shave 15 minutes off my half marathon time and finish in 2:30.
Now real runners out there are laughing at me. First, most people don't aim to shave 15 minutes off their PR in one race. Second, real runners aren't stupid and they actually train. To that I say, suck it real runners!
(I don't really mean that real runners! I love you! I want to be you!)
I finished an incredibly hilly course in 2:28:51!
Or 2:28:46 if you want to go by my chip time.
Y'all I was so happy I nearly cried when I got to the finish line. I can't wait to see the race pictures because I know I was smiling like an idiot as I crossed the finish.
Here I am after I collapsed to the ground gripping a Muscle Milk and a bottle of water while I waited for a friend to finish:
Hello boob butt crack, I'm so glad you were able to join us for the race.
I'm pretty sure now I'm going to register for a full marathon. And I pinky swear, this time I'm going to train for real.
I don't know if you read Hyberbole and a Half (you should) but she did a post one time about spiders and was absolutely, 100% accurate when she said "Spiders are like little pieces of death wrapped in scary." Spiders are the one thing that make me shit my pants and have heart palpitations no matter the situation. I could be receiving a Nobel prize for curing cancer and if a tiny spider crawled out on stage I would drop a load right there. And cry. And then have no idea how to gracefully walk off stage. So yeah, spiders are scary.
Now that you know this little nugget of information about me, I want you to imagine me driving my car when a spider, a large green spider, drops down from the windshield into my line of vision. It is amazing that I am alive right now because no joke, my first thought was this:
Luckily I managed to pull into the parking lot of Truman's My Gym and do a bunch of spastic moves to get the spider out of the car before I went in to grab him. One of those moves included thinking the spider was on me and pitching my wallet, keys, and phone across the parking lot. After a few panicked moments I was satisfied I had removed the beast even though (foreshadowing) I never actually saw it crawl onto the paper I was enticing it with so I went inside to get Truman.
Once we made it back to the car, a smarter woman would have performed a spider check, but I just got in and headed home. Two minutes later the fucking spider dropped down on me again and I had to drive the whole way home with my stomach in my throat and a hand plastered across my mouth so I wouldn't scream and scare my child. I was terrified and the whole time jparks was mocking me as I sent him terrified instant messages. Check it, I couldn't even type coherent words because I was so upset:
Once home jparks did remove the spider and I drove his car for the rest of the afternoon because I couldn't be in mine without feeling spiders crawling on me. Last night I asked him "So, how do you feel about car shopping this weekend?" and he laughed. Thing is I'm not kidding, my Jetta is dead to me now. Fucking spider ruined it.
Jparks and I are party people. Not "swinging, key party" people, but "let's invite a bunch of people over and have their kids entertain our kids" party people. This combined with how much DST can screw with Truman's bedtime gave me the genius idea to throw a party, complete with bounce house, on the day the clocks sprung forward.
It didn't look promising in the days leading up to the party because all the rain this city has missed for the past year rolled in in giant black waves of lightning and thunder. The bounce house place threatened to cancel and I made a mad dash to Target to buy coloring books and playdoh for the kids. But at the last minute, seriously like an couple of hours before people were set to arrive, the sky turned blue, the temperature quickly rose from 45 to 85, and the bounce house was delivered. We ended up with a packed house and the plan to exhaust the kids so they would pass out at their normal bedtime totally worked. I'm pretty sure we'll be throwing a DST party every year and that it's such a smart idea MENSA will be here begging me to join any minute now.
I was pretty busy during the party with talking and eating all the things setting out food so I managed to not take a single picture but please enjoy these post party pictures.
It wasn't a birthday party, but that doesn't mean cake wasn't present.
People made a big dent in the drinks but we still have enough leftover for another party. Who's free this weekend? Party planning tip: I thought those little cans of soda would be good because I hate 2 liters and no one wants a whole can of coke, they just want a few sips between beers. Turns out those little cans get lost in an ice chest and were not consumed. At least I assume that's the case, but my friends could all just be lushes that stuck to beer and liquor.
Speaking of drinks, we put a hurting on the vodka (this is the second bottle) thanks to this fancy machine.
Check me out getting all crafty and shit, I used jelly beans in my candle holders as a festive spring touch.
I got flowers as a hostess gift! I love flowers!
Our whole house is covered in grass bits and my vacuum is a piece of crap. I want a stick one but not that damn $300 Dyson one. Who has a rec for me?
The bounce house was deflated after everyone left but the company didn't pick it up until late Monday afternoon. Truman managed to have the best first day of Spring Break ever by having a private bounce party this morning. Next year we'll be hosting a very exclusive next day, post party bounce. Bloody Marys and mimosas for parents, more bouncing for the kids. Awesome.