Wednesday, June 29, 2011


It was bound to happen eventually.  I mean, I knew it was inevitable.  I've been feeling pretty good for the most part lately.  I've been doing a strenuous workout for the last week; I was even able to do a bit of strenuous yard work without any repercussions!  I've been thinking of finding other ways to add more physical activity to my life, at least eventually and gradually.     Overall, things have been good for me, physically speaking.  I even lost several pounds in the last couple weeks!

But then my nerves flared up.  I'm not sure what triggered the onset of the pain.  I'm assuming it had more to the fact that I haven't been sleeping well the last few days due to some nervous anxiety.  I don't think it's the exercise.  In fact, most fibromyalgia treatments recommend healthy doses of regular movement in order to combat pain.  Dopamine is released during periods of physical activity which ends up acting like sunblock for the skin before venturing outside, except you're protecting your nerves from themselves.

Well, whatever.  I spent all day laid out, hobbling about, being generally unproductive and worthless.  I hate it.

Once the nerves on fire sensation settled into just a painful ache in my joints, I tried to get up and move a bit.  Namely, by picking up a basket of laundry that had been sitting in the dryer for a week and hauling it up the stairs to hold.  Wow, that was dumb!  I used the last of my oomph to collect books into the bed with me, only to be pinned by my nurse-cats.

It's super easy to forget that I have limitations, even when I feel fabulous.  Every day needs to be approached with patience and gratitude, and it's so difficult to remember that in the moment.  Every day is also an opportunity to learn from mistakes.  Some day I'll learn how to work around my limitations, but part of me still hopes I'll be "cured" someday.  Who knows, maybe I will.

Monday, June 27, 2011

Challenge Update & Weekend Happenings

Yesterday was the seventh day I participated in Jillian Michaels' 30 Day Shred, and Day 6 of my challenge with Cynthia!  I intended to go round 7/8 tonight, but I'm changing my plans in favor of a restorative yoga sequence instead.  My muscles need a break and a good lengthening.  So far I've lost 1 pound (current weight: 189 pounds) and 1 inch around my waist.  My size 18 misses pants are far too big to be wearing on a regular basis.  Good because that's evidence of progress, bad because I can't really afford to replace them.  Thank goodness I might have a belt around here somewhere.

While I've been doing pretty darn well with the challenge, Cynthia has not been.  We both have particular health considerations that are obviously different from one another's.  I am thus far lucky that mine hasn't been flaring up, in fact, it might be just because I've been consistent that my fibromyalgia hasn't gone haywire.  Cynthia wasn't so lucky.  I spent the weekend racking my brain for ideas for modifications and we agreed she would continue to do her challenge exercises in the pool (which is totally awesome!).  She's also gone back to the gym at least one day, so I'm going to need to find ways to step it up to keep up with her!

My weekend was pretty lazy for the most part when I wasn't killing myself with the Shred.  Saturday morning was spent doing some yard work (here's hoping THAT stays consistent!) for an hour or two.  The rest of the day was spent lounging waiting for a special dinner.  My parents took Jeff and I up to Erna's Elderberry house just because.  Coincidentally, it was our two year anniversary, too.  After dinner we explored the grounds, found a rope swing set and a life-sized chess set.  We'll have to go back when there's more daylight so we can play a proper game.  On the way out, the highway was delayed 3 hours due to an accident, so we took back roads around Bass Lake.  Jeff got a bit car sick, unfortunately.

Sunday, Jeff went to help a family member move and I got the house to myself for a few hours.  Since I finished Cursor's Fury (Codex Alera, Book 3) earlier in the week, I spent a couple hours reading Captain's Fury (Codex Alera, Book 4).  I love this series!  Around noon I ran off for a guild meeting and some swimming with friends.  I ended my day at my dad's house for dinner, going through old SLR cameras.

Pretty mellow, and I wish it didn't have to end.  The daily grind is killer!

Thursday, June 23, 2011

30 Day Shred Challenge

My best friend Cynthia and I started Jillian Michaels - 30 Day Shred on Tuesday (I got excited and technically started on Monday, but we're counting from Tuesday because that's when she got her copy of the DVD).

Before her wedding, we promised each other we'd help one another get fit this summer.  Since we live on opposite ends of the town and Fresno summers are too hot to walk on our lunch and breaks, we agreed that following a DVD on our own would be the best course of action.  Whoever wins is treated by the other to a mani/pedi!

For the next 30 days, without exception, I will be busting my butt!

Today is Day 3 of the challenge (day 4 for me).  Jillian Michaels - 30 Day Shred contains three different workouts each increasing in difficultly.  Although if you know anything about Jillian Michaels, she is never not difficult.  In fact, I'm pretty sure she must hate me.  Or maybe I hate myself for letting her beat me up everyday.  Each 20 minute workout includes a warmup, three circuits of strength/cardio/abs, and then a cool down.

You think, "Sure!  Twenty minutes is EASY!"  You would be mistaken.

Did I mention that I think Jillian hates me?  My body is sore!  But I'm enjoying it.  I started on the "easiest" workout.  Cynthia is doing a 14 week challenge for the duration of the summer and I might cover that 14 weeks by doing 30 days of each workout.  Initially I just wanted to start with the 30 days and go from there.  For me, a lot changes in a month, and I know I'm going to have some big personal challenges throughout the summer so it's all about baby steps for me.

I'm hoping by the time this 30 days is over I'll have lost a dress size or two, and roughly 10 pounds or so (I'm very short so a couple pounds is all is takes for me to switch sizes normally).

Being stronger I guess is nice, too.  Honestly, I'm enjoying the extra physical activity.  It makes me happy and likely to do even more.  For example, I spent at least one evening this week doing bellydancing drills for 30 minutes and I've done about 30 minutes of yoga every day.  It's like one physical activity just lends itself to more.  And I love that.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Let the Summer Begin!

Technically I have been blogging over the last couple weeks, I just haven't been posting.  Yes, that means lots of new content is coming up...eventually!

So, where have I been?

Mostly keeping busy, very busy, helping my bestie prepare for her wedding.  Which was gorgeous!  I scored some AMAZING photos, here's a peak.

Michael and Cyndall M

Did I mention it was gorgeous?  The photo above was taken on the boardwalk in Curry Village, Yosemite National Park.  The actual ceremony took place at Glacier Point where there was still a ton of snow on the ground.

Jeff and me in the snow! Sort of!

See?  Proof that I actually went to the snow this year!  Willingly!  I only cried a little bit.

Last time I was in Yosemite, it was in 1996 to climb Half Dome but the mountain was covered in clouds so I didn't get to see these spectacular vistas.  It was such a treat to be there.  Jeff and I are looking forward to going back this summer, hopefully with the boy.

When wedding planning wasn't my focus, we had birthday activities for the boy.  He turned 5 on June 8 but we celebrated his birthday with a party with family and friends from dad's side and mom's side.  There was a huge turnout!

I didn't eat anything, but I'm told that the cupcakes were completely inedible by anyone with taste buds.  But the kids seemed to enjoy them (perhaps the lure of the Oreo on top?).

Immediately after the wedding, we picked the boy up early to take him on a long trip down to Orange County to visit Mickey Mouse.  Sunday evening we planned to shop Downtown Disney (the favorite spot for the whole family is the Lego Store of course), buy our tickets for the following day, have dinner, and call it an early night.  But when we got to the ticket booth we learned that we didn't have to be Southern California residents to apply for the monthly installments on the annual pass.  I think the boy's reaction sums up all of our excitement.

Complete with crotch-grabbing action.
Once all the paperwork was done, and the boy got his birthday button AND his first-timer button, we rushed over to Disney's California Adventure and hit "A Bug's Land" and hopped on every ride available.  He loved it!  We tried to check out the World of Color show, but the boy and I were too short and only one of us fit on Jeff's shoulders (ahem....NOT ME).  We finished our evening on Soaring Over California and hurried back to the car.

The next day, we hit up the Land proper.  We had a blast in Tomorrow Land but quickly lost steam afterwards.  Jeff and I were just worn out from being in Yosemite all day Saturday.  The boy had a BLAST and seemed content to leave at around 4pm.  That meant LA traffic for the next two hours and we got home around 9pm.  Everyone slept well.

Then I got a stomach bug.  Boo.  I missed the rest of the week at work.  Boo.

Finally this last weekend, I got some girl time.  We got mani/pedis as this neat place in Clovis.  I got a little emotional when I was put in a corner away from my friends (I spent the week couped up in the house, I wasn't out to be by myself) but it was a good time nonetheless.  We had sammies then departed for swimming.  I got a nice tan.  I hopped over to another friends house for more swimming and dinner.

Father's Day was kind of a bust.  I hope Jeff had a good time but we went to a buffet, spent way too much money for crappy buffet food and I got sick again.  The boys played video games and I rested.  Then Jeff and I saw Super 8 and went out for Italian with my folks.

THAT'S what I've been up to!  Amazing start to the summer.  I'm really looking forward to it.  I'll have an announcement that's probably a bigger deal to me than it is to you in the next couple days, but I'm excited.

Monday, June 6, 2011

Updates, updates, updates!

I can't even remember where things left off.

First thing, Honey cat is doing much better.  She had her stitches pulled last Friday.  They had to life a scab, though, so she's having to wear the cone of shame a bit longer to make sure it heals nicely before I unleash her tongue on the site.  Her movement is slightly inhindered by the cone, but she uses her pathetic state to her advantage when company is over to procure lots of scratches.
Honey...managing to stretch across three pillows.
Second, my bestie over at Partners in Kind is getting married in a few short days.  They had decided to elope earlier in the month after some misunderstandings with family.  But over the weekend, they decided that they wanted their family present to celebrate the joyous occasion.  I'm so excited for them!  I'm looking forward to the adventures the next week brings.  With the exception of a graduation event, I'm keeping myself as free as possible in case they need last minute help with anything.  I can't wait!

Also, I have been dying to do some reading.  So instead of writing, I sped through Jim Butcher's second book in the Codex Alera series Academ's Fury.  His work is very action-packed and the suspense was killer for me, so I had to finish it in a week or I wouldn't have been able to pick it up again.  I also read my friend Margo Lerwill's new short story Dis (An Urban Midgard Short Story) (you can find Margo's blog about writing at Urban Psychopomp).  By the end of the story I was wishing it was longer!  I believe she is going to write at least two more for the series, and I can't wait for her to publish them!  By the way, it's only 99 cents as an Amazon Kindle download.  You should totally check it out!  While I'm waiting, I've started reading Cursor's Fury (Codex Alera, Book 3).  Although I may jump to Soulless (The Parasol Protectorate) when that comes in from my library request (on Cyndall's recommendation).  I used to be a total bookworm, but I haven't been reading as much fiction as I would have liked.  I have a lot of catching up to do.  Once or twice a month, I might start doing book reviews.  We'll see how pretentious I feel as time goes on!

On the financial front...just don't ask.  In the interest of "accountability" I have not been doing well at all.  I have very little cash on hand and big medical bills along with big travel plans on the horizon.  I need to supplement my income with something.  I have some ideas but that's for another post.  I've also been leaning very heavily on my credit card (it only has a $400 limit, so I can't go too crazy with it and I know it's a limit I can ALWAYS pay off at the end of the month).  I'm disappointed in myself, but more on this in another blog post.

I'm in the process of uploading pictures from Easter, finally!  Also celebrated Danny's birthday on Sunday.  I have a few pictures from that (OMG that boy made out BIG!).  Hopefully I'll be a bit better about writing this week.  I have LOTS to talk about!