The end?

Weeellllllp.

The day has come.

As I thought it would.

As it has many a time before.

I’m finally bored of writing this blog.

Not “bored” per se, but… unfulfilled?

It was a fun month and a half, but now it’s time for me to pursue another creative outlet.

With my ADD I’ll probably undoubtedly return to blog another day, but hopefully next time it’ll be in a more stream-lined fashion. I feel like this one tried to tackle it all – fitness, funny, personal, home, advice… It made me feel all over the place and unable to concentrate. And what… was I planning on keeping this forever?

I’ll keep this blog up only in the sense that I won’t block it from the internet (I’m actually proud of some of my posts), but I don’t see myself updating here anytime soon. And if I did, it would most likely be accompanied by a complete overhaul to the look, theme, and content.

So… to my 4 readers… go read something else now!


How to be unemployed

Yep. This is my life. I’ve come to accept it. Until I manage to win the heart of a hiring manager for one of the 27 jobs I’ve applied for since moving to this inner-city town, you can find me filling my time with various activities around the house requiring various amounts of energy (mostly on the lower end of the spectrum). Sound exciting? Here’s how you can do it too! With honors.

Please... just email me back already... (source)

  • Catch up on DVR’d shows while eating omelets and/or oatmeal
  • Wonder why the American Idol and America’s Next Top Model contestants get to live in such sweet mansions without really earning it
  • Search Monster.com for a 9-3 job that pays $50 an hour and includes free coffee and donuts
  • Rotate between pajamas and workout clothes, proud of yourself for saving money on laundry costs
  • Consider testing how many days you could go without taking a shower to save even more water… then nix the idea because you don’t want to get divorced
  • Create your own blog so you can pretend you have someone to talk to during the day
  • Stare at the rain through windows while listening to U2. Wish you were friends with the cast of Friends.
  • Wish you were friends with the cast of How I Met Your Mother
  • Consider the possibility that you watch too much TV
  • Remember that you need to set the DVR to record the “Don’t Trust the B in Apt 23″ series to see if it gets any better than the Pilot…
  • Wake up to strange noises.
  • Make a video about how there may or may not be a nest of birds living in your dryer vent…
  • Sign up for a substitute job for the next morning. Get excited. Get an email 2 hours later saying it’s cancelled. You are no longer needed. Story of your life.
  • Fall asleep on the couch
  • Fall asleep in a chair
  • Fall asleep in the middle of the Price is Right
  • Perfect your lip-syncing and dancing skills to “Beautiful Soul” by Jesse McCartney
  • Answer the phone anxiously when it rings, thinking it will be that job you applied for, begging you to bless them with your employment. Get frustrated because it’s just the cable company calling again to persuade you to sign up for a land line. Like that’s happening.
  • Stare longingly at the loaf of bread sitting on top of the microwave. Eat a rice cake smothered with peanut butter instead.
  • Practice your Mary Poppins telekinesis-snap, attempting to make the dishes to wash themselves
  • Die a little every day.

Thoughts from this morning

Over the past 2 hours…

  • Bye Ryan, have a good day! Haha sucker you gotta go to work. I’m going back to sleep.
  • 65 minutes later… What is that noise?
  • mild panic attack that there might be someone in the apartment
  • rational thought that a person wouldn’t make such a quiet scratching noise like that
  • wide awake. Is it a bird outside the window?
  • journey to kitchen, squinting in the morning glare through the windows
  • check one window. loud noise to my right.
  • GASP! There’s an animal in the laundry room…
  • Alright now, stay calm… you’ve owned rats before so if it’s one of those just pretend it’s a pet
  • slowly check the side of the dryer
  • LOUD NOISE, jump back
  • At least it’s not a person… I need to take some Excedrin before I do anything else here…
  • take headache meds, eat banana, check blog to see if posted okay, text Ryan about new inhabitant
  • joke about Mayhem Raccoon
  • Ryan’s “not thrilled” about the blog I posted… I should probably take it down…
  • delete today’s original post for marriage equilibrium
  • make mental note to publish that particular post again if ever really mad at Ryan. LOUD NOISE
  • That’s no furry creature… sounds more like flapping.
  • check behind dryer with newly found courage
  • film damning evidence that there is a NEST of BIRDS in and/or around and/or outside of our dryer vent…
  • I’ll post this video tomorrow. Keep ‘em on the edge of their seat.
  • Time to make me some eggs!

Hump Day Brain Dump #5: Carnivals and Chiropractors

Lots of thoughts are rolling around in my brain today. I’ll just dump them here.

First, though: LOOK WHAT IS HAPPENING IN A STOP & SHOP PARKING LOT NEAR ME.

Try to guess why a smorgasbord of colorful spinning death structures might excite me:

A) I enjoy carnival food and the smell of fear and vomit.

B) Answer A

C) Both A and B

D) All of the Above

E) Secret Answer F: In the town I went to college there was an annual carnival set up in the mall parking lot similar to this one that I never, not once in my five years and two degrees, was fortunate enough to attend. Every one of my friends who had already experienced this particular fair dared not return, recounting their sketchy encounters with carnies and steep prices. All I wanted was a chance to walk through a maze of mirrors and maybe get some pink cotton candy. Never happened. Now… my time has come.

F) This is the right answer.

Mkay, back to the dumps.

Update coming soon on the past 3.5 weeks of gluten free living… Not sure it’s the path I need to be taking. I see a rigorous elimination diet in my future.

What is your opinion of chiropractors? This is the first thing my new chiropractor asked me yesterday morning at my first appointment ever, to which I replied simply, “I don’t have one,” to which he responded with an overzealous work laugh… Hopefully after my first adjustment my opinion will be based on the welcome eviction of the Rice Krispie characters from my back. {Psst… did you get that joke? It was about snapping and crackling and popping… common things that chiropractors and backs do… thought I’d help you out.}

Speaking of chiropractors and bad jokes…

You know those questionnaires that medical offices make you fill out? I’m not talking about the necessary ones where you list your insurance and emergency contacts… no, I’m talking about the ones where you give every doctor in the office license to mock you. They have questions like, “On a scale of 1-Michael Jackson, how bad is the pain?” and “When did you last use a tampon?” and “If you had to pick your favorite villain from a 90s cartoon, who would it be?” The answer to all three is “Scar” by the way…

Well, my embarrassment came in the form of a question that was more of a demand than anything really… “List your hobbies here.”

My hobbies… Okay, well, I enjoy eating.. A LOT – probably shouldn’t write that… okay, reading, that’s a good one. Movies, fitness… uh, I like computers so I’ll put that… I just started this blog so that probably counts as a hobby.. umm, let’s finish it off with eating, just for fun. No one actually cares about this question anyway. But wouldn’t you know it… right smack dab in the middle of a neck x-ray… “So I see you like blogging… what do you blog about?” Geez, if that’s not a stab in the back. {Psssstt… I did it again. It’s a joke about backs. Because we’re talking about chiropractics. Keep reading.}

My self-confidence immediately kicked into fight or flight mode and I damaged my own reputation right there in the middle of a radiation blast: “Oh.. it’s new.. just dumb things like fitness and entertainment.. I don’t know..” Cue my satisfaction that this man is in his 40s and very unlikely to go searching for my latest plight to reach the masses with self-deprecating humor.

For some reason lately I’ve had the strongest urge to write a song. That’s it. Just write some words and pair them with a unique and/or catchy tune. Channel the Vanessa Carlton within. But you know what? You know what, It’s not as easy as T-Swift makes it seem, is what. The other day I sat down at my piano and played around with a bass beat and some notes in the middle C area, sang a few lines about a river and wondering where someone is, and gave up promptly. That stuff is hard.

You know what else is hard… keeping an up-beat blog when your whole world seems to be on a downward slope (dramatic). Goodness gracious, I need some cheering up. Let’s try these:

Yeah… those always work!


4 1/2 pros and cons of blogging

I may still be a little new at this (though, if you’d seen my previous attempts at blogging you’d know that I’ve actually written a lot more posts than you see here on TSL), but I’ve already learned quite a bit about the process of writing a weblog (did you forget what “blog” actually meant?) and the consequences that come with it…

Fair warning: There are way to many ellipses in this post (possibly not even used correctly) and way too few pictures…

Pro: You get to talk about whatever you want!

It’s your space to dive into the world of competitive knitting, what you ate for breakfast, your dog’s latest achievement in leash training, or just what you did this past weekend…

but it comes with a price…

Con: You put yourself in a vulnerable position.

Telling strangers about your life and feelings, giving unsolicited advice, or bearing your soul for sometimes not even a single comment – it can be a little intimidating. If you aren’t confident in what you have to say, all kinds of negative thoughts about your self worth can creep up. Even writing this post alone, I’m thinking, “This is way too sappy and serious… people are going to think I’m lame… I am lame… I should go workout… that’s not even related, why did I just write that…”

However…

Pro: Writing blog posts is good practice for writing other pieces.

For me at least, writing here has become a fun creative outlet where I can compete against myself to see if I can write a post better than the last – more developed, more informative, more pictures, funnier… whatever. Meanwhile, I’m honing my composition skills for my ultimate goal – I’ll let Stewie elaborate on that one for you.

Con: You must work to earn exposure.

It’s a tough pill to swallow, but no one is going to read your blog – pointless posts and all – unless you put yourself out there. And one of the hardest parts is “putting yourself out there.”

BUT!!

Pro: It feels great to gain followers.

This one is a little cyclical between itself and the aforementioned Con… you can’t get followers without doing the work, and you can’t feel the reward of your hard work until you get followers. I only have EIGHT followers at the time of post (hint, hint, to anyone reading this sludge right now), but every single one of those notifications I received? Happy dances ensued.

Con: Blogging requires consistency and frequency.

This isn’t a diary. You must blog at a consistent rate, with (somewhat) consistent content. For me, blogging daily has been difficult, even for just the six-ish weeks that I’ve been doing so… I might decrease that frequency some point soon (I’ll be honest, some of my posts, especially at the beginning, have just been written for the sake of writing, not for content value… I know you’re shocked), but it takes a while to earn your spot in the sandbox, so I’m just trying to bring my A-game for now. And that’s all you can do in the end.

Pro: You join a community of people like you.

Once you find your niche in the blogosphere, it’s fun to read posts from others who are enjoying, learning, and writing about the same things as you. For some reason, diving into someone’s life through written word and pictures creates the feeling of a pen pal or a long-distance relationship with a friend who shares your hobbies, interests, and in my case, a fantastic sense of humor and great taste in Youtube clips.

Con: You must be conscious of your audience.

Look, I’m friends with family on Facebook. Sometimes I promote myself there, and they’re likely to wander on over to see what little old Sandy is doing these days… Let’s just say I censor myself a lot more on this blog than in real life.

Pro: It teaches the art of the positive spin.

In a way, it forces you to be positive about your life. Nobody wants to read a sob story. They don’t necessarily need to feel uplifted by the end, but writing blog posts makes you really think about the content before publishing.

Maybe you’re considering starting a blog, or more likely – you’re way more of a veteran than I am and just find yourself relating to and/or disagreeing with this post. Either way, I would appreciate a comment, like, or a follow!

Sappy post over. I need to go watch some Archer or something now to even it out…


Unsuccessful pancakes and the first non-list post

A couple days before Easter, Ryan’s and my (Ryan’s and mine? Ryan and I’s? I never know what to do there), our life went a little topsy-turvy. You know how they say good things come in threes… well, in our case, “good things” was a bunch of CRAP, and “threes” was closer to elevens. Not to be confused with “elevenses,” which I would assume is delightful.

In any matter, our trip to the store on Good Friday to buy salmon for dinner turned out to be a silent, depressed walk from the bananas to the fish department to the candy aisle, ending in an impulse buy of pastel-colored M&Ms. Bad moods always seem to require an accompaniment of chocolate, and I thought it would be fun to blog about something Easter-themed that was also gluten-free.

I searched through about 10 different GF pancake recipes online, looking for something I could make with just some all-purpose GF flour (no mixing of 3 or 4 different types of GF flour) and other ingredients I had readily available. Ever the rebel, I decided to concoct my own recipe, using a combination of all the advice from recipes I had read.

"Hey, this could be bloggable..."

Spoiler alert: Remember when I said this is not a food blog? It’s absolutely still not.

tasting the first one just to make sure I didn't need to add anything... "Tastes good, and smells amazing! These could still work!!"

My plans, they were grand. I would add some food coloring to the batter after every other pancake, so that I would have a delicately stacked mountain of green, pink, blue, and yellow, smothered carefully with butter and syrup, tiny pops of pastel chocolate peeking out from underneath the dough and sugar.

In fact, I would also magically possess a professional-grade digital camera that would cause all my photos to look like works of art, and rainbows would appear as if from nowhere. Also my hair would be free of cowlicks, and spinach would taste like macaroni and cheese.

looking deceptively dainty

Not so much.

Oops. I'm assuming the excessive browning is from too much baking soda.

For that reason, I don’t intend to share the recipe with you. Sorry! If you’re looking for one, try here, here, or here. I don’t know how those taste because I decided to make less than perfect GF pancakes, but I’m assuming they’re decent because at least they were confident enough to post recipes!

But you know what?

such potential in this picture

Paired with some bubbly bacon and warm coffee (and The Blindside on DVR), we had a nice little Easter morning.

just need to wipe up all that syrup... what to use...

To be continued once I’ve attained GF pancake success!


Favorite workout of the week #3

This one was so fun that I attempted to do it twice this week… though the second time failed in comparison, of course. There’s something about a spontaneous workout idea that can never quite be recreated as an afterthought.

I set out to go running around my neighborhood – which has lots of hills, only a few side streets, and 2 little parks/baseball fields/playgrounds. I don’t usually enjoy running so I often try to mix it up and stop halfway through to add in some fun sets of another type of exercise. Added bonus to that method: it was recently shown that pausing in the middle of a workout can burn more fat than just powering through. Sweet. And I can’t for the life of me remember where I read that, so you’re just going to have to trust my un-sourced advice. Up to you.

The bleachers near me are NOT that big. They're maybe 6 rows each. Wimpy.

Warmup:

  • speed walking, 4 min

Workout:

  • running (my “run” is ~6.2 mph), 12 min
  • bleachers, up and down, 4 times each (4 sets of bleachers, running to each one)
  • bench dips, 10
  • incline pushups on bench, 10
  • bench dips, 10
  • incline pullups on railing by park office, 8
  • running, 12 min (back home)

Cooldown/Stretch:

  • walking, 2 min
  • squats, 10 singles, 10 slow with pulses
  • quads, hamstrings, hip flexors
  • side lunges, 8 each side
  • inner thigh, whole body, back, arms

Happy Easter, everybody! Take a rest day tomorrow, for all that is good and holy.


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