Friday, February 27, 2009

A book, a puzzle and a girls' night out

So, last week I finished reading Under the Banner of Heaven: A Story of Violent Faith by Jon Krakauer. As Publisher Weekly puts it:

"Using mostly secondary historical texts and some contemporary primary sources, Krakauer compellingly details the history of the Mormon church from its early 19th-century creation by Joseph Smith (whom Krakauer describes as a convicted con man) to its violent journey from upstate New York to the Midwest and finally Utah, where, after the 1890 renunciation of the church's holy doctrine sanctioning multiple marriages, it transformed itself into one of the world's fastest-growing religions."

This book was phenomenal. I feel it is a must-read for anyone interested in religion, specifically the Mormon church. The book was very well-written, very fluid, and kept me engaged the entire time. I highly recommend this book to everyone.

I LOVE doing crossword puzzles. I always have. One of the strongest memories I have of my grandfather (my dad's dad) is him sitting at our kitchen table and doing a crossword puzzle. My dad carried on the tradition for a while, though he is currently enamored with Sudoku (I can't get into it). Whenever I have a long flight, I'll do puzzles to pass the time.

So, you're probably wondering why I have 'Finish a crossword puzzle' on my to-do list this year. Well, I always do them, but I rarely finish them! And since I moved back to the US from England, I don't have any long flights to do them on, and, if I have any spare time, I usually spend it with family and friends or reading a good book. BUT, every Monday night, Cam and I go to his grandparents' house for dinner and every Monday night I do a crossword puzzle while Mimi gets dinner ready (she won't let me help in the kitchen - and not because of my lack of skill, but because it is her way of relaxing). More often than not, Cam's mom helps me do the puzzles, but we always finish them! It's a wonderful tradition that I hold dear to my heart, so, my 'Finish a crossword puzzle' this year includes much more than the satisfaction of accomplishing a small goal. It has brought me closer to Cam's family AND made me more knowledgeable.

And finally, I had a wonderful Girls' Night Out last Friday.

There is a full post about it on A Different Bird, but needless to say (after you see the photos), I had a wonderful time!

Slim in 6: Days 31 - 32

Feb. 27: It's funny how guilt will make you work so much harder. Today, I did the entire 'Burn It Up' DVD, including the leg lifts from hell! I was so proud of myself. So proud, in fact, that I thought about calling Kole at work to tell her. And then I decided that hearing my perky, excited voice that early in the morning may not be the best thing for her (I love you, Kole!). But damn, I feel good.

Feb. 26: I was SO BAD today. I was tired and cranky from not getting my full eight hours. The older I get, the more I treasure getting my eight hours of sleep. Anyways. So, Ms. Cranky-pants (ME!) only did half the workout and called it a day. And rather than dwell on it too much (though it did bother me on and off all day), I decided that tomorrow I shall just kick Slim in 6's ass.

Read about my entire Slim in 6 experience here.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Slim in 6: Day 30

Feb. 25: Have you ever woken up in a foul mood FOR NO REASON AT ALL? Yeah, that happened to me this morning. When the alarm went off, I smushed my face into the pillow (oh, my lovely pillow) and listened to Adult Contemporary music for five minutes before getting out of bed.

I started the workout just fine, with lots of energy in fact. But by the time I got to the leg lifts (damn you, leg lifts!) I was running out of steam. I did the entire workout, but only two minutes of the after-workout stretch. I should have learned my lesson from not doing it before, but I haven't. Maybe I need it beat into my head? And for some reason, the hostess, Debbie Siebers, really annoyed me today. Every time she laughed during an exercise, I wanted to yell at the screen, 'What's so funny about being in pain this early in the morning, b***h?!'

Have I mentioned I do the workouts in our home theatre? So, the cast of characters in the Slim in 6 DVDs are almost life size. So, today, while doing my front kicks, I attempted to wallop Debbie in the head. And while it was very immature, it sure did make me feel better.

Read about my entire Slim in 6 experience here.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Slim in 6: Day 29

Feb. 24: So, I did it. I made it through my first real workout using the 'Burn It Up' DVD. And while I did march in place a couple of times while they were doing some exercises, I managed to power through it. And I hate to sound cheesy, but I really do feel empowered like the host, Debbie Siebers, suggests you will.

So, just 13 days left in the entire program. I'm really starting to wonder what exercise program to try next!

Read about my entire Slim in 6 experience here.

Monday, February 23, 2009

Slim in 6: Days 26 - 28

Feb. 23: Oh my gosh. I tried (let me reiterate: TRIED) to do 'Burn It Up' this morning. The third in the Slim in 6 series. I'm no quitter, but halfway through the workout, I just stopped, throwing myself down on the couch and fast-forwarding through the rest of the workout to see what torture exercises I missed out on. Tomorrow, I will try to do better, but holy crap. The workout is just super fast and was too much for me on a Monday morning. I'm a little angry with myself, but I keep telling myself that a 30-minute aerobic workout wasn't bad this morning. It just should have been for an hour. Sigh.

Feb. 22: I took another day off because the durn elbow is still hurting. I think I slept on it wrong Friday night.

Feb. 21: I took the day off because my elbow is really hurting.

Read about my entire Slim in 6 experience here.

Friday, February 20, 2009

Slim in 6: Day 25

Feb. 20: This morning I wasn't feeling the workout. My legs were extra tired for some reason, and I didn't do all the leg lifts. That really bothers me because I have done them for six workouts in a row. I wasn't feeling really well last night though, and didn't eat a lot of dinner, so I may not have had enough energy to do the exercises. One thing I have learned is that I have to eat enough if I want to stay active. Maybe tomorrow will be better!

Read about my entire Slim in 6 experience here.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

New header for A Different Bird

So, I am now 1/4 of the way through 'design and create new seasonal headers for my other blog, A Different Bird'. I'm not really happy with it, but time is running out for Winter 2009.

So, what do you think?