Friday, December 2, 2011

Life is Ever Changing

I mean, I knew that. Really, I did. But SO much has changed since September. And it all started with a statement made by my coworkers on Monday, October 3, 2011. I had spent part of the weekend before that work week up in PA with my family and had eaten all kinds of different foods that my body was no longer used to. GOOD food, but not necessarily healthy food. So it wasn't any surprise to me that I wasn't feeling quite up to par on Monday morning. Then, as I was talking to Catherine (a close coworker), Kim (our office manager) walked up to join the conversation. And I almost immediately felt sick to my stomach and started dry heaving. Grabbed for my trash can, but thankfully didn't need it. Take one Wild guess at what that statement was. Go ahead..You might be right. Kim looked at me and said...."You're pregnant." "No, I'm not," I replied "I think I just ate something funky up in PA this weekend."
   "Nope. You're pregnant." Kim declared.

Well, knowing my body and how out of whack it has always been, I keep pregnancy tests on hand at home. So when my alarm went off Tuesday morning (Oct. 4th), I took a test. And sat in my bathroom for the next fifteen minutes bawling my eyes out.

I've taken pregnancy test many times before. My period is almost non-existent so I keep those test "just in case". They've always taken a full minute to show the negative sign. But not this morning. On October 4, 2011, it took less than five seconds for that test to show as positive. I was pregnant. And in shock.

I just spent the last 4 months working out, eating right, and losing 34 lbs. And now...I was pregnant. That meant weight gain. Life change. A Baby! I didn't know what to do other than sit in my bathroom and cry. I was elated...I was going to have a baby. I was devastated...I was going to gain all the weight that I had worked so hard to lose...right back. I wanted to talk to Joseph...but he was still asleep and is never fond of being woken up before his alarm. Finally, I stopped crying and went through all the motions that it took to get ready for another day of work. Finished in the bathroom, I took the dogs downstairs to let them outside, and I called my mom.

Of course, it was only 4:30 in the morning so she didn't answer. Her cell phone was turned off. So was the house phone. I had to call my younger sister. Only she didn't answer, her voicemail did. Then she called back, because her phone had woke my mom and my mom woke her up to call me back. In tears, and barely understandable, I told my mom that I was pregnant. She congratulated me, then because she couldn't understand me through my tears, handed the phone back to Rachel and went back to bed. Really, Mom!?! So I had to share my elation and mostly my fears with my sister, finally calming down after Rachel stated, "Hannah, if God is giving you this baby now then He must believe you're ready to be a mother. He knows best."

After Joseph woke up, I did share the news with him albeit still in a slightly hysterical way. (Since I had had time to work myself up again.) He decided I wasn't fit to work and made me call off sick. Joseph did the same and we actually spent a very nice day together getting used to the idea.

Wednesday found me at my doctor's office for an appointment just to confirm the pregnancy. Not like that was hard. After two positive home tests...I was pretty sure it was for real.

This coming Sunday will make it two months that I've known about my baby and I can't even begin to explain the changes I've already gone through mentally. I still think some days that I'm not quite ready to be a mom, but when that happens I just remind myself that I still have 5 months to go before the baby will be here. I remind myself that God DOES know what's best for me. That He is in control and He's not going to give me any more than I can handle. I'm so excited about my baby now. I can't wait to meet him/her. So, until that day, I'm calling him Squishie. Makes it easier than calling the baby an "it" since I don't know the sex yet. Joseph does want to find out, so that announcement will be coming, but until then...Squishie will remain my baby without a color. Though...I just have to say...if Squishie's a girl....I really don't want alot of pink. all!

Monday, September 5, 2011

Crazy Posting

Ya'll may have noticed that my blog kinda got a bit overloaded with posts last night. You can blame that on or thank my sister for that. Whichever you prefer. She felt that I should copy over my blog posts from SparkPeople so that all my posts from anything were saved in one place. So I did.

I understand that to go from books to weight loss is a pretty drastic change in my blog, but since I haven't written pretty much anything at all since March about books, maybe it isn't so drastic after all.

I'll try to keep the actual weight posts to a minimum while copying over those that are more normal will continue.

Hope everyone is ready for Fall and that ya'll enjoy your Labor Day.

Sunday, September 4, 2011

Why September is NOT my favorite month of the year anymore

Thursday, September 01, 2011

I used to ADORE September. School had been in session for two or three weeks already and fall was in the air. Then, I grew up. And got a "real" job. And now...September is my LEAST favorite month. Let me explain.

I work for a company that resells IT equipment and maintenance to the government. September is the government's end of fiscal year. The month when they spend the most money. My job is to process the orders from the govt and to send the new orders to the vendors. It's relentless, mostly mindless work. I hate it on a normal day. In September, the work triples and quadruples. Breaks become a thing of the past. Eight hour days....what are those!?! Try 12 -16 hours on for size. My boss and her boss are insincerely sincere in their thanks and praise at the work getting done. What they're really saying when they say thank you in September is....why can't you work more hours in a day, and HOW did you NOT get all of your work done? Why didn't you ask for help if you were so far behind in your work? *Hannah's reply* Oh, you know...I really don't have THAT much work (sarcastically, of course). I really just like to talk my head off instead of, wait...that's YOU!

Bitter? Absolutely. The thanks we do receive are all so two-faced and insincere that I have begun to abhore this job. One day, I'll get out of it. But, until that day...i'm going to continue disliking September.

exhausted and wanting a day off

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Of LIFE. I'm tired, worn out and ragged. I honestly don't WANT to go outside for my cardio workout today. I really just want to crawl into my bed, under the covers and go to sleep. Do you think anyone would mind if I did? Well, other than myself? I'd hate myself for letting points for my House slip by me. So, I'll get going now. To make food for dinner and then make my way outside to get my 30 minutes over with. Then, it's a shower and early bedtime for me, baby! 

Summer Term Week 9 Day 2 aka Tuesday

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

I scared myself this morning when I was getting ready for work. I opened my ring box to put on my wedding band and engagement ring and neither one was in the box. I panicked. Couldn't remember having taken them off last night before bed. When did I take them off? *sigh of relief* Oh right, I took them off in the car to put lotion on my hands when I was driving home from work yesterday.

Continued as usual with my morning preparations, put the dogs in their kennels, and headed into the garage to leave for work. As I backed out of the garage and down the driveway, I slipped my rings onto my finger. It was then that I truly realized just how much I need to go to Claire's at the mall this week. Claire's was recommended to me since they carry plastic ring guards.

Once again, I was struck with what I have already accomplished. I've lost enough weight already that my hands have slimmed down. If I shake my hands to get the last bits of damp off of them after drying my hands, my rings slide down my finger to the point of falling off. I may not see my weight loss in my thighs, hips, belly, or arms, but my fingers show it. And THAT is incredibly encouraging to me.

I know I've lost weight. My clothes fit looser and I can wear medium tops without any reservations, but I still don't necessarily see any physical changes. So knowing and seeing the difference in my hands keeps me going. My rings were re-sized right after my engagement to my husband to size 5, then re-sized again after I gained weight to a size 8. I'm hoping to get that size down to a 4 before I'm done. And, by golly! I'm getting there! 

Weekly Weigh-in 8-29-11

Monday, August 29, 2011

Good Morning, my loves! And believe is a GRAND morning! I just got back upstairs to my computer after weighing in for the week and I am SO excited to share that I lost 3 lbs. last week. THREE! I've been pretty consistent about the weight I've lost since I came back to Spark People in earnest back in June. Each week has been between 1 and 2 pounds. The only thing I did differently this week is play outside with the neighborhood kids instead of doing the 30 Day Shred. I think I must have been starting to get stuck in a rut with the Shred. But that's okay, because I realize now that I can't rely on only one method of exercising to reach my goal.

Wish me luck this week, friends. I've been challenged to take my cardio outdoors this week and as long as the weather stays nice, that shouldn't be too hard mentally, but let me just tell you that playing with the kids leaves me with more bruises than I can even count anymore. Can't wait for this afternoon! 

The Mirror of Erised or My Heart's Desire (8.27.11)

(Formerly posted on SparkPeople on Saturday, August 27, 2011)

For those of you who don't know, The Mirror of Erised is a mirror from Harry Potter that shows the person that looks into their heart's greatest desire. The Challenge of Harry Potter contained a daily challenge of blogging about that topic this week.

I can't begin to tell you how hard this topic is for me because I don't really know that I even HAVE a greatest desire. I mean, aside from working a lousy real-life job, I am content. I have everything I need as well as the greatest husband a girl could ever ask for. I suppose...well, I suppose there is one more thing I would love to have.

Children. Of my own. I grew up in a family of seven children and therefore never lacked a playmate. However, I have a problem that my mom has never had. I have an irregular menstrual cycle. So irregular, that I've gone as long as two and a half years without a period that wasn't caused by pills. I honestly don't know if I am even capable of having children. And, my dears, I WANT children. I want a large family like the one I grew up in. Yes, I AM serious. I DO want alot of children. Call me crazy, but if God will provide the means to take care of them, what right do I have to limit the number of children He gives me?

This is why I began my weight loss journey. My lifestyle change. I got tired of making excuses about why I may never be able to have children. See, I don't have polycystic ovary syndrome. I don't have a hormone imbalance. I don't have any reason that I shouldn't be having a normal period. But I don't have one anyway. So, I figured, maybe it IS related to my weight. If I can change even that ONE thing...maybe it will help. Because I want to be a mother. I want to change smelly diapers. I want to teach my own children. I want to see them grow up. And not just in my dreams. For real.

This, my dear friends, is what my Mirror of Erised shows me. A large white house with a wrap-around porch with my husband and I standing on the front stairs to the porch surrounded by little brown and blonde haired children (boys. not girls). A few dogs thrown in the mix and my Mirror is complete.

If I can, personally, do nothing else other than change my lifestyle to be more healthy and more fit, than so be it. BUT, I WILL change. I WILL do everything I possibly can to actually own a REAL picture that matches what my Mirror shows me.

My Week in Hogsmeade (8.21.11)

(Formerly posted on SparkPeople on Sunday, August 21, 2011)

Monday my friends and I from Hogwarts traveled down for a week long visit to Hogsmeade.

Tuesday, when we hit Dervish and Banges, I learned a little bit more about how the lack of exercise affects my daily routine as I did my first 30 Day Shred in about a week. Never realized how fast muscle went away despite reading about it constantly.

Wednesday at Zonko's Joke Shop, my coworker and I had more than a few laughs to help alleviate the stress of our job.

Thursday, when we visited the Post Office, I met a few more people from the House of Slytherin. Now THAT was probably my favorite part of the week since I hadn't met many Slytherin's since starting school at Hogwarts.

Friday, we stopped for refreshment at The Three Broomsticks, and let me just tell you that I don't believe I have EVER drank so much water in one day before! 17 cups of water had me feeling like I could do laps around a swimming pool at my work desk.

On Saturday when we stopped at Honeydukes' I didn't actually get to participate because I went on a date with my husband (a straight up Gryffindor!) to Pei Wei.

And we are at one of the bestest shops ever opened...Scrivenshaft's. This is the day I get to share with you what I did this week.

I think if I had to choose a shop that I needed to visit more often, it would have to be The Three Broomsticks. The chance to earn house points for every single cup of water that I drank in one day motivated me to help my house as much as I could. A visit like that every day of my time at Hogwarts would help me more than anything else. And you know..most of that would be because the more water I drank, the less food I ate. LOVED that!

After such a GREAT time spent in Hogsmeade this week, I am definitely looking forward towards our next term at Hogwarts. See, I'm planning on helping my fellow Slytherins win the house cup this year. Cause we deserve it! 

Weekly Weigh-In 07/25/11

(Formerly posted on SparkPeople on Monday, July 25, 2011)

So, I figured it would be a good idea to publish my weigh-ins each week if for no other reason than to see my progress in actual writing. Of course, earning a few more SparkPoints in the process doesn't hurt. :-)

This week, typical to me, I ate under calories almost every day of the week. If you had asked me before I started tracking my food how much I ate I probably would have given some super high number of calories and I probably would have been correct. My problem, I think is, with me switching to more nutritious foods, I am still eating the same VOLUME, but now, the volume is ALOT fewer calories. So tell me, how can I pump up my caloric intake without FEELING like I'm overeating?

On a brighter note, my husband is absolutely loving the new healthy me. But wait...not necessarily in the way you might think. He loves me because with my counting my calories, I've been cooking dinner. I hate cooking. I always feel like it takes too much time, BUT, I dislike this weight more than I dislike cooking. Besides, I've been able to find some pretty time efficient recipes so far this month. AND, it helps to have Joseph's iPod dock in my kitchen now so I can listen to my k-pop while I cook. K-pop makes Everything better. Oh, and the other thing that makes cooking enjoyable...FRESH vegetables. Like, FARMER fresh. Best part of the summer is farmers markets and BOY am I putting them to use this year!

Anyway, enough about everything else. Here are the numbers.

Last week (07/18/11) - 188.5 lbs.
This week (07/25/11) - 185.0 lbs.

Whoo Hoo! 

In the words of my sister... (6.24.11)

(Formerly posted on SparkPeople on Friday, June 24, 2011)

That's right, folks. I'm headed to Myrtle Beach on Sunday so the remainder of this week will be spent doing laundry and packing for the beach. Maybe just a little bit more shopping to to pick up those last minute items like SPF 15 sunscreen. I am so excited about this vacation. I've needed it for longer than I care to admit.

However, I'm just a tad bit worried about keeping up with my diet while I'm down south. I'm not worried about my exercise. I mean, I've got a computer and I've got my 30 Day Shred, but seafood buffets....YUM. I suppose I need to start researching now the number of calories in my favorite seafood dishes so that I can plan my meals accordingly even though we Will be eating out. Fun. Fun.

So, cheer me on my friends, I'm gonna need all the encouragement ya'll can spare, if you don't mind. Now, I gotta go pack! 

Ridiculously Excited (6-23-11)

(Formerly posted on SparkPeople on Thursday, June 23, 2011)

I don't own a scale. I don't WANT to own a scale. So normally, if you would ask me how much I weigh, I would tell you whatever I weighed when I last visited my family doctor. However, the building that my job is located in has a free gym and it has a scale. So I determined that I would try to weigh in for SparkPeople every other week. Today was an "every other". If you've seen my status you know that I weighed in at 195 lbs. That's 10 lbs down from what I weighed at my April doctor's visit. 10 lbs. in two months. For me, that's unheard of.

I can see daily, the impact my eating habits have on my energy levels. Since I've gotten back on SparkPeople, my eating has gotten healthier and healthier (ignore today's dinner). My coworkers have noticed and comment all the time if they think that I'm contemplating cheating on my goals.

When you put it all together, I'm losing weight and I'm feeling better. What more could a girl ask for? 

To Stay Motivated (6-20-11)

(Formerly posted on SparkPeople on Monday, June 20, 2011)

What I think of to stay motivated in no particular order:

My goal to be fit enough to run with my friend who runs cross country races for George Mason.

My Husband - the occasions when he tells me that I look really good

my future children (praying that exercising will help me even be Able to Have children)

My goal to be able to lift a full sized motorcycle with no help from anyone else

My dream of being able to fit into that perfect dress from college again. (even if i don't hit my end goal weight, i'll still be able to fit into that dress again)

Being and Eating Healthy.

Strengthening my back - I don't want any more problems with my back ever again

I know some of these goals are much more future oriented, but every one of them is reachable and THAT is my biggest goal...Having attainable goals and dreams. And making the ones that seem to be UNattainable...attainable anyway.

What is YOUR biggest dream/goal? 

Trying to get back on track (6-13-11)

(Formerly posted on SparkPeople on Monday, June 13, 2011)

I suppose I should start with letting you know that I have a wonky back. I don't know where it all started, but every so often I'll aggravate my back and throw off my whole workout routine. Of course I would go and do JUST that as soon as I get back onto SparkPeople. But, I'm determined to not let it discourage me. I can still do minor exercises and dumb bell exercises. But I MISS my long morning walks with my coworker. And I miss yelling "Go Bald" at Jillian Michaels as I struggle to remain upright in the side lunge in Level One of The 30 Day Shred. So, I'm going to suck it up, and try to do a little of the Shred today. My back's feeling better, but still not up to par so I'll have to watch it, but I just can't stand sitting around anymore. It's literally killing me.

In other words, pray for me my may get ugly.

The vegetable I hate eating (6-9-11)

(Formerly posted on SparkPeople on Thursday, June 6, 2011)

I pretty much despise carrots. Ask my husband at any point and he'll quickly confirm this. In fact, he is always telling me that I NEED to eat carrots for all of the good they'll do my eyes. Honestly...I don't care. Carrots are dry. They taste nasty. They turn my fingers funky colors when I peel the outsides off. I don't even like them with brown sugar or butter. If I have to eat them raw, I end up eating more dip than carrot. At least, that's how I felt about them before lunch today.
I purchased a fresh bunch of organic carrots this morning because I really AM trying to eat healthier foods and of course I'm counting calories and such. About an hour ago (11:30ish) my stomach started going crazy for food and all I have here at work with me for lunch today are those organic carrots. So, I peeled three. Spooned out my slightly heaping 2Tbsp of French onion dip. And headed back to my desk. And I honestly have to admit, I'm eating more carrot than dip right now. These carrots aren't dry. They aren't leaving a funky aftertaste. They actually have a slightly sweet flavor to them. They DID still turn my fingers orange, but if I can eat carrots that I will truly enjoy?...I'll deal with the orange.
I guess the point of my post here is to say that sometimes stepping out of my comfort zone and reaching for the foods I typically avoid can be an eye-opening experience. Maybe I don't hate eating carrots after all! 

Friday, August 19, 2011

What's the point of a blog when you never post?

You can totally ask me that question. As long as you don't expect a clear answer. I love blogging, really I do, but I always find myself wishing I was busy doing something else instead of writing. I feel like I don't have anything interesting to contribute, so why waste your time while you read my drivel.

Oh, yeah, and the other reason I haven't posted....I've been busy changing my life. In MANY ways. My younger brother and my sister-in-law no longer live with Joseph and I. I've been SO much more active. I've lost 24 lbs. since April 2011. I went back to Spark People and I LOVE it there! I've not read nearly as many books this year as I did last year. Not even close. I've found that I've been able to avoid buying more books than I really need. I've visited King's Dominion for the first time. Joseph and I have found a new church that we BOTH absolutely love.

What about you, though? What have YOU done since we last chatted? Please spill. I hate that I've been so far away from you for so long.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Being Inspired

My seester, Rachel, left me a comment on my last post about me inspiring her to post her journals just like I did. First, I'm not sure if she was being serious or could totally go either way on that one. Second, she called me an addict. I would like to put forth that I am NOT an addict. I am inspired. Inspired by many random things, perhaps, but inspired nonetheless.
     When something catches my attention and keeps it for a good bit of time, I am inspired. When I hear a beautiful piece of music by an artist I have never heard before, I am inspired to find more music by said artist. When I find a new tea that tastes absolutely divine, my inspiration to try new teas is reaffirmed. When I read a particular genre and in turn fall in love with the story I am reading, I end up inspired to find more books in the same genre even if I don't typically read that genre. (This usually happens with sci-fi books.) And, when a sister calls me an Addict...I am inspired to write a post about inspiration. Imagine!
     According to Free, Inspire has the following definitions:

                  1. To affect, guide, or arouse by divine influence
                  2. To fill with enlivening or exalting emotion
                  3. To stimulate to action; motivate / To affect or touch
                  4. To draw forth; elicit or arouse
                  5. To be the cause or source of; bring about

     Reading those definitions makes me think past the easy, fluffy post that I started off writing. I can't help but wonder if I ever truly inspire anyone. It seems that the 5th definition is probably the most usual type of inspiration. But, wouldn't it be nice to be able to claim that you inspired people in the form of definitions # 3 and/or #4? I think it would be. How many people can claim the status of #3? Perhaps our parents? Probably politicians. Hopefully the Holy Spirit.
     Are we open for inspiration? or do we keep ourselves held back. Many times it is easier to be discontent with our lives, but still refuse to accept the inspiration from others that would push us to change. It's safer to reject inspiration. But What IF? What IF we accepted the inspiration from others around us? What would change? Would be become more outgoing? More focused on the goals we've set up in our lives? More likely to take risks?
     With these questions comes a fear of mine. Change. I don't really like change, but I'm beginning to accept it and to realize that it isn't as bad as I always thought it was. My coworkers are becoming huge inspirations to me when it comes to actually looking for a new job that I will enjoy. My neighbor inspired me to finally  follow through with making those doctors appointments that I've needed to make for years now. My husband shows me by example and inspires me a little more each day to be less selfish of my own time. My sister inspires me to become a better writer. (even if, by better, I only mean that I write more often and that I write more meaningful posts.) Little by little, my inspirations are Changing my Definition of Life and I think I like it.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

A Show of Journals

Hi. My name is Hannah and I love buying and collecting journals. Thankfully, this is not one of my obsessions.  I think. I bought a few new journals a week or two ago and looked up the manufacturer of once of them yesterday before I started work. In the Google search that followed, I found a blog entirely about notebooks. Picture after picture of this blog's readers notebook collections inspired me to photograph my own group. 

This first picture is of the notebooks/journals that I will probably give away as gifts because I don't believe I'll ever use them myself. Out of the picture above, four were purchased from Target. The blue one with the birdcage. The purple butterfly. The Dubble Bubble and the Donald Duck. I had actually purchased two of the blue birdcage notebooks. I only photographed one because I was writing in the other at the time. This one being written in is the journal that helped inspire this post. The Passion journal was a gift but I have to admit I really don't like it that much (really hope i don't offend anyone by admitting that. eek.) and the blue circle notebook was an online freebie from a few years back. None of the notebooks in this first picture have been used at all.

This second picture shows the notebooks I plan on using personally sometime in the future. R2D2 has been around for many many years. I think I bought him before I even started college 10 1/2 years ago. Bumblebee is from when Transformers first released in theaters. Loved the character so much I had to have the notebook. The cherries just appealed to me. They're kinda preppy and totally cute. The red eagle/TKC notebook is from my job. The two smaller notepads with flowers are from the Target dollar spot. The red Fleur de Lis is from Borders and the green Celtic knot is from Barnes and Noble. The Dell laptop notebook was an end of the year gift from Dell to my company. Dell sent all of my teammates and I one. And the last two...the Penmanship and two patterned notebook are also both from Target. Have to admit I love both of them.

These above have been used/ are in use currently. The green beat up notebook at the top lists my Christmas gifts as I buy them each year so I can keep track of how much I'm spending on people. The Dots was used once in an emergency. The purple and black (at the top) has a written conversation between my younger sister and I in it. The wordy notebook right below it is my brainstorming journal. I have lists in there of pithy sayings from my family, license plates, ideas for blogging, etc. The Chess notebook is my Books Read journal. I have written down every book that I've read since January 2007 in that notebook. The map is for whatever I need it to be for while the colored clipboard notepad holder is just colored. I don't know that I've really used any of the actual notepad yet on that one. And last is the tiny little Moleskine notebook. It is actually a day planner that I've been using to keep track of my piano lessons in. I have also begun using it like a checkbook for my personal debit card. 

And last, but definitely not least is my collection of college diaries and journals. I honestly started the diary in the top left corner when I was nine and never truly Finished the diary out before I started the next. In the folder next to the diary is my first real journal. The cover tore off from over use and even after having been duck-taped, I had to remove it and put the pages into the folder for keeping. After that journal came the black leather one which was a gift from Joseph, then Arwen, then the metal journal (which was my favorite). These were followed by the yellow and brown, the poppy, the blue flowered journal, and the Jack Russel Terrier notebook. The last entry in the terrier notebook was written a month after my wedding. I have not written in a journal since then until just yesterday. See, I think I'm going to try again. I used to love writing down my thoughts and the details of my humdrum life. Maybe I'll begin to love it again. 

        Do you collect notebooks or journals? If yes, do you keep a personal journal? How long have you done so? I'm completely curious to learn more about you, so please tell!

Monday, February 28, 2011

Meet Miss Ava Solbach

On February 19, 2011, Joseph and I welcomed a new little girl into our family. Now, before you get excited and think that I had a baby and just was holding out on ya'll, let me tell you that Ava is a puppy. We adopted her from Operation Paws for Homes. She was rescued from a high-kill shelter in NC not long after she was born. Ava had a rough start to her life (she's 13 weeks old). Out of her litter, only three or four survived. They had all contracted some sickness from the shelter they were in. She was all skin and bones when we adopted her even though she had a clean bill of health.

Her first day home.

President's day. Third day after adoption. See how skinny she was!?

She loves to snatch whatever Rocky has right out of his mouth.

What messes, Mom?

MY dragon!

Sleepy baby

Now, if you look closely, Ava seems to have a foot growing out of her tummy. That's Rocky's back leg. She lays on top of Rock and he lets her.

Aren't they just SO sweet together??

Monday, February 14, 2011

A Hot day in February

THIS is the temperature that greeted me when I left work this afternoon. It's February for crying out loud! It should NOT be 60 degrees outside!

Monday, February 7, 2011

It's Monday, What are You Reading? (2011-2)

"It's Monday. What are you reading?" is a meme hosted by One Persons Journey Through a World of Books. This is where you list what you've read in the past week.

It's been a LONG time since I've participated in this meme, but I really wanted to join in this week. Partly since it's been a really good year for reading so far and partly because I miss my reading meme friends.

Without further ado, here's my list for this past week:

Kringle ~ Tony Abbott 1/30
The Lightning Thief ~ Rick Riordan 1/30
The Sea of Monsters ~ Rick Riordan 1/31
Beast Master Vol. 1-2 ~ Kyousuke Motomi 1/31
Backstage Prince Vol. 1-2 ~ Kanoko Sakurakoji 1/31
Boyfriends, Burritos and an Ocean of Trouble ~ Nancy Rue 2/1
The Titan's Curse ~ Rick Riordan 2/2
Moe Kare Vol. 1-7 ~ Go Ikeyamada 2/2
The Battle of the Labyrinth ~ Rick Riordan 2/3
The Last Olympian ~ Rick Riordan 2/4
The True Confessions of Charlotte Doyle ~ Avi 2/5
Lyddie ~ Katherine Paterson 2/6
Jip: His Story ~ Katherine Paterson 2/6

So, my goal this year was to read as many books as possible that I own that I either haven't read in YEARS or just haven't read at all yet. My total books towards that goal since January 1st: 33. I think I'm doing pretty well so far.

As for my To Be Read this week list:

I am currently finishing up I Am Number Four ~ Pittacus Lore and Under the Lilacs ~ Louisa May Alcott.

I intend to begin and complete The Lost Hero ~ Rick Riordan and possibly start on the other two books by Avi that I haven't read yet. If not Avi this week, then I'll read Northanger Abbey and Mansfield Park. (Not really looking forward to reading those two no matter how much I love Jane Austen.

What did YOU read this week?

Sunday, January 30, 2011

Frank's Words of Wisdom

" can make things go as you want them, if you only try hard enough, and walk right over whatever stands in the way. I don't mean to give up my plans for any man; but, if I live, I'll carry them out - you see if I don't."

~Frank from Jack and Jill by Louisa May Alcott

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Best Quote for Work Ever!

"It is impossible to enjoy idling thoroughly unless one has plenty of work to do."

~ Jerome K. Jerome

Monday, January 10, 2011

Mission Accomplished!

This past Saturday night Joseph and I were over at my in-laws visiting when my father-in-law asked if we knew of any way to copy a video offline and save it on his computer. Joseph and I both had a few ideas as to how we could manage this feat, but none of our ideas panned out. This led me to resort to desperate measures. I clicked on the "Contact Us" link and copied the email address down. The following is what was typed and received after I clicked on "Compose" in my email account. (the following has been edited to protect the innocent and their emails)

Sent: Saturday, January 08, 2011 8:34 PM
Subject: Request for copy of 2010 Season Hilights Video from RiverDogs Website

Good Evening,

I was wondering if it would be possible to receive a copy of the 2010 season hilights video showing on the RiverDogs website. My brother-in-law, M--- played for the team this summer and my father-in-law would really like a copy of the video for his own personal viewing. This would be a personal video only.

Please let me know if this is a reasonable and possible request. It would mean a great deal to M-'s dad to be able to add this video to his personal tracking of M-'s baseball career.

Thank you for your time and consideration.



On Mon, Jan 10, 2011 at 7:21 AM, Dave Echols wrote:

Dave Echols

EVP / General Manager

Charleston RiverDogs

(Okay, so he didn't really write anything, but he DID forward my email to Noel.)

On Mon, Jan 10, 2011 at 2:28 PM, Noel Blaha wrote:

Hi Hannah,

Please provide me with a mailing address and I'll send a copy on a disc to you.

All the best,

BYOFNoel Blaha

Director of Promotions

Charleston RiverDogs

Of course I replied to Noel's email with my FIL's address and thanked her profusely. So, yeah. WOW. It was a shot in the dark, but it worked and I am SO excited about it!

Sunday, January 9, 2011

New Year's Resolutions - Or, Why I Don't Make Any

So, Joseph and I went down to Manassas together this afternoon to visit McKay's and Aldi. On our way down, I mentioned to Joseph that I was planning on curbing my spending of money on new books. Of course, he asked me what other things I had planned for this year. Or other things that I want to accomplish. (Basically, what were my new year's resolutions.) I had to admit to him that I don't make any new year's resolutions and thankfully, he didn't ask why. But, I got to thinking about it. Why DON'T I make any resolutions each new year? It's not that I think they're a bad idea. And, it isn't as though there aren't a few things that I don't do at the beginning of each year. I mean, I always make a point of praying that no birds poop on me each year. That prayer has been answered every year since I started requesting saving from bird poop.

No, I don't make resolutions because there isn't anything much more discouraging than failing a resolution. I've made the "lose weight" resolution. I've made the "eat better" resolution. The "be nicer to my family and coworkers", the "read more books", the "read fewer books", the "use the internet less and spend more time with Joseph", etc. The list never ends. But honestly, it never fails that I fall off the wagon and end up more discouraged afterwards than I had ever been before making the resolution in the first place.

Instead, I've learned to go with the flow and to choose to make up my mind each day. It's so much easier to make the choice daily than it is to choose to accomplish something in the long term. I know this doesn't work for most people, in fact, it probably doesn't work for hardly anyone but myself. But, it's okay. Because, for me, a goal is like faith was described in Daughter of Joy by Kathleen Morgan - It's a daily choice. We have to CHOOSE to believe in something every day. In the same way, I have to choose to eat right every morning when my day starts out. If I eat a good breakfast, lunch is easier to eat and supper as well.

What about you? Do you make New Year's Resolutions? Or do you have a different method of accomplishing your long-term goals?

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Question to the World

So, I'm just going to jump right in and tell you how I feel.

I feel like my in-laws don't really like me. But, I'd like to get to know them better. They're both reasonably civil and sometimes even really nice, but there's always something holding them back. Unfortunately, I'm not exactly the most outgoing person on my own. I have to have someone to bounce off of. I tend to be the person that sits off to the side of a conversation listening to everything going on around me, but not really getting personally involved.

Here's the thing. My father-in-law just have a quintuple bypass surgery on his heart yesterday and I don't know much about it at all. Joseph isn't exactly one for talking about something like this and I feel weird calling my mother-in-law and asking for details now (that's it done and all). See, my in-laws didn't tell me about the surgery, Joseph did. My in-laws don't talk to me. So I kinda feel out of place in asking for information about something they didn't share with me on their own already. Would I be out of place in asking about it now? I don't want them to think I'm not interested in them, but it's just hard to show interest in someone that doesn't seem to be interested in me.

help! What should I do?? I need advice, please

Saturday, January 1, 2011

I Laugh in the Face of My 2010 Reading Goal

Hahahahaha! Take THAT you huge number known as 150. I smoked you. Fair and square.

Oh, by how many books, you ask?

Do you really want to know?

*mumbles* 118

You didn't hear me?

*a little louder than a mumble* 118

FINE! Since you keep insisting on being able to handle the truth!

I Read 268 books in 2010. That's Two Hundred Sixty Eight books. Wow. That looks even bigger than a larger font does. I should write my high numbers out all the time!

*pats self on back* Yes, dear, you did a good job. Now put your ego away and finish up the significant number of books that you started last month but never finished. You lazy bum!

September, October, November, and December Tally


Clockwork Angel ~ Cassandra Clare 9/1
Quidditch Through the Ages ~ J.K. Rowling 9/6
Fantastic Beasts & Where to Find Them ~ J. K. Rowling 9/6
The Education of Bet ~ Lauren Baratz-Logsted 9/7
Persuasion ~ Jane Austen 9/8
Maximum Ride: Volume 3 ~ NaRae Lee 9/9
Wondrous Strange ~ Lesley Livingston 9/10
The Man of the Desert ~ Grace Livingston Hill 9/13


The Mystery of Mary ~ Grace Livingston Hill 10/16
A Bride Most Begrudging ~ Deeanne Gist 10/22
The Adventures of Holly Hobbie ~ Richard Dubelman 10/25
Love in the Dark ~ Barbara Cartland 10/27
A Wish Come True ~ Barbara Cartland 10/28
Royal Punishment ~ Barbara Cartland 10/28
Moon Over Eden ~ Barbara Cartland 10/29
A Gamble with Hearts ~ Barbara Cartland 10/30


Look, Listen and Love ~ Barbara Cartland 11/2
Winged Magic ~ Barbara Cartland 11/2
For All Eternity ~ Barbara Cartland 11/7
Paranormalcy ~ Kiersten White 11/8
No Time for Love ~ Barbara Cartland 11/8
The Knight and the Dove ~ Lori Wick 11/15
Harry Potter: Film Wizardy 11/19


Bless Your Heart, Tramp ~ Celia Rivenbark 12/24
Tess and the Highlander ~ May McGoldrick 12/26
Emily and the Scot ~ Kathryn Smith 12/27
Jane ~ April Lindner 12/27

And that's a wrap, folks. The end of my 2010 Books Read list. I'll tell you my grand total of books read in 2010 in my next post.

Happy New Year, My Loves

Good Afternoon, 2011. Welcome to the world. It's very nice to meet you. I have a few requests, if I may, that'd I'd like to ask of you.

First, would you be a dear and go finish up my laundry, start my dishes, and take down my Christmas trees (yes, plural) and decorations around my house? I'd be EVER so grateful if you'd make yourself useful. Thank you.

Second, I easily surpassed my reading goal last year, so I think I'd like to take it easy this year. I'm thinking about merely reading through my own bookshelves with a very few new additions. Namely, the last books in series that I've had started for quite some time already. (Think, Percy Jackson in paperback.)

Third, If you could find it in your heart to help me remember to take a walk around my neighbourhood as often as possible, I might be willing to name you as my best friend ever. Maybe.

Fourth, Let's have fun together, 2011. I'm going to bet you are going to be my best year yet!