Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Look Who Came to Visit!

This past weekend I had a special visitor here in all know her. She's the other half of this blog and my own personal BFF!! :)

This picture is most definitely NOT from this's from our sophomore year in college, I think? But it's hilarious, so why not share it! :)

Mari arrive Thursday night, and just hours before that, I won free Bruins tickets! Some times our vendors offer tickets to our company, and we can enter ourselves into the drawings. I always enter, but this was the first time I've won! And such good timing. Even though I'm not a HUGE hockey fan, I do love all Boston sports. We had awesome seats and had a blast taking in the whole experience.

Having the BFF in town is pretty much the best thing ever. We are so ridiculously goofy together and laugh non-stop. There's nothing better than feeling 100% comfortable around someone and knowing they're not judging you...because they've done/think something equally as silly.

The main reason for Mari coming to visit (other than we cannot live without each other for very long) was wedding dress shopping! Her big event is less than a year away now (yay!) so it was time to put the petal to the metal and see what was out there. We had a little help from (one of) my other bride-to-be friends!

We've already talked about how awesome a photographer I am, so no need to comment on my skills
The dress shopping was amazing. I won't tell you the outcome because it's Mari's story to tell, but we had so much fun. We did other wedding related things this weekend, like talk about the little details and watch Bridezillas (it's important to know how NOT to act). In the end, Mari's visit was way too short, as always, but it was still wonderful!

This week has been insanely busy (what's new?) so I don't have much else to report. But I can say that the hubs made the MOST AMAZING stuffed peppers last night and I'm seriously looking forward to the left-overs for lunch today (maybe I can have him give me the recipe to post here)! I'm so glad he loves cooking because after being at work until 6pm and then driving an hour home, it's the LAST thing I want to do. I'd eat eggs and salad with tuna every night if I didn't live with Johnny. :)

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Busy Bee

I had no intentions of being a once-a-week blogger. When the BFF and I started this blog, I thought I'd be a daily blogger, or at least once every two days. But it turns out I'm really busy. And finding time (after sitting on a computer at work all day) to post is harder than I thought. I'm going to work on it though. I'll work on making life a bit more interesting too.

The weekend was fun. 

We went to Maine again, and spent a windy weekend with our favorite Vermonters and their little one. It was chilly, but at least it wasn't rainy!

We spent a lot of time outside (as much as we could stand, although Saturday was much sunnier than Sunday), and had some great seafood.

We also stopped by our new house. It's a work in progress, and hopefully it won't be too small once it's all done. I'm really excited to get into a bigger place though ;)

Even though the weekend was fun...

Last week, I had a good, hard slap in the face. When I went to the gym, I decided to get on the scale. I've been uber slack about going to WW, so I figured I'd see where I stood. WELL. Let me tell you. I stood a few more pounds up than I'd like to be. Ouch.

Let me back track, when I posted about needing motivation to keep working hard back in July, people said some really nice things to me that should have helped. I should have taken their words to heart, and gotten back on track. But, I didn't. I continued to slack in my food and exercise, and now it's caught up to me. I knew it was bound to happen, but I wanted to believe I was just taking time to "maintain." My clothes never stopped fitting, and I didn't really notice it, but I was most definitely gaining.

As depressing as this is to me, I know it's not the end of the world. It's a few pounds in the grand scheme of a lot of pounds. It's a little detour on a long trip. I don't like it, but I can deal with it.

So how am I going to deal with it? Well, first I cried about it, naturally. Then I decided to go back to the source of my success:

It was a little brutal to walk in and see my summer faults on the scale and printed in my book, but it's a step in the right direction. It's where I know I need to go to be successful. This week back has been far from perfect, but hopefully the few more steps in the right direction will help me to work it all out.

Work is busy, in a really great way, but it's HARD to balance the rest of my life. With longer hours of work and shorter hours of day light, I'm going to have to push a lot more than I ever have before. Here's to hoping *this time* is the last time I start again.

EDIT: I thought a lot about this post last night, and there are a couple things I wanted to touch on. First, I want to explain that it's not the number on the scale that matters. It's that the number is a reflection of how I feel. I do not have the strength, happiness, or confidence that I have had before, and will have when I'm making the right choices and losing. And second, there is no shame in starting a million and one times. And if I find myself in a place that I have to start over, even just to kick a few pounds I gained in the summer, it's perfectly fine. It's doing something about it that matters. And I hope that I always have the courage and determination to better myself, as many times as it takes.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Working Woman

I'm back in the working world. I was a little sad to leave the pup at home the first day but I did it and I'm really excited about my new career opportunity. I like the company, the people and so far, the work - and to me, that's a pretty good mix!

In other exciting news, we are officially less than a year away from my wedding!! I'm excitedly nervous (you know the happy butterflies in your stomach kind) and just can't wait to have our family and closest friends together as we get married!!!

Last night I worked my back and biceps and they are feeling it today! I was supposed to go run today but 1) my ankle is still sore from Saturday's run so I'm not certain if this is just normal rebuilding or if I should be alarmed 2) I'm being lazy (honesty is the best policy...). I'm trying run one day, lift the next but I'm wondering if maybe I'm neglecting some beneficial cross training (spin, swim, yoga) and how I can work those into the hectic week too. Any ideas?

I'm looking forward to tonight's dinner- we're going to bake chicken in some bbq sauce and then on the grill for a few minutes. Yum!

Sunday, October 16, 2011

The Pumpkin Patch!

I was able to increase my running distance this week by 10% and it felt so good! After being woken up to Jay making me pancakes for breakfast, we set out to conquer the 3.9 miles. The path was mostly uphill and it was so warm outside but I was so happy knowing I was about to run further than I had in months. What a great way to start a day! After a quick shower and taking in a lot of water we set out for a trip to the McCall's Pumpkin Patch. We started our visit with the corn maze (which this year had a Looney Toons theme). I love the numbered "Cornundrums" that you find along the way. Any guesses on the answer to this one?Answer: a lame duck. Maybe not the most clever one out there but still so fun. After running through the maze (there was a small child and his parents that decided instead of working his own way through the maze that he'd wait to watch us go down the wrong paths and just follow us so we HAD to do some running to lose him, we're very mature...) we took the hay ride out to the pumpkin patch and picked up some Jack-O-Lanterns-to-be. We found ourselves sneezing like mad after the hayride, but it was so worth it.

Today I'm resting my sore legs (and ankle) but will be going on a walk later - and by going on a walk I mean going shopping. Hope you had a great weekend!!

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Tuesday of Meetings

It's been an exciting couple days here in Boston! Well, at least in my life, which is what this is all about right? :)

Monday I went to the gym and FINALLY got my ID. I had to wait for the office to be open and blah blah, but now I have it! And, it's a terrible picture! Remember how I got sunburned on Sunday? Yeah, well it will show in an ID picture taken on Monday. Trust me.

Shiny and red! Just like I want to be in all my pictures! Just kidding. I feel like most people think ID pictures will always be bad, but I actually have an awesome license picture, so I thought this would be good, but no such luck. Oh well. The college kids swiping me into the gym can enjoy the awesomeness every time.

Monday was about looking awesome, and yesterday was about meetings and meeting new people.

First, I went to my first meeting for the Men's Event committee. I LOVE love love working with Fenway and I'm so excited to kick off another year of planning for the big day. I didn't stay long, but I did a quick introduction and got my materials to start spreading the word! March 3rd is not all that far away.

With my name tag still on, I ran down the street to Eastern Standard for meet-up with some other Boston area bloggers! It was my first real blog event, so I was pretty nervous. And I was late, so that always adds to my nerves, but once I sat down and started chatting, I felt at ease. The ladies who attended were really great, and it was nice to meet other people who've put themselves into the blog world. We all seem to be at very different places blog wise (some have been doing it for while, some are super newbies like me), and it was great to get more perspective.

Alli, Erin, Samantha, MB, Sara, Sarah, and me. Picture courtesy of Erin!
We sat around and chatted for quite a while, and I really enjoyed the company. And Erin couldn't have picked a better place. I've been to Eastern Standard several times before, and I love the atmosphere and the decor (and I love that they take reservations at the bar. I much prefer to sit at the bar than a table in most places, and it's great to know that you don't have to wander in just hoping someone will get up from their seats). Not to mention, the staff is great, and the food isn't bad either (read: it's awesome). I had some wine and their grilled flat bread appetizer.

It was fun to be at a table of people all taking pictures of their food. Makes you feel like slightly less of a weirdo when every one is doing it. :)

Meeting these ladies was a big deal to me. I've never really put our blog out there all that much. Sure we tweet about our posts, and I actually posted on Facebook after the tri, but we're pretty small time in the world of healthy living blogs. It was nice to feel like a part of the "in-crowd", and to get some inspiration from real live people (blogs are great, but they're even better when you can put a real person to a name). I really appreciate being including in this group, and I'm looking forward to the next meet-up. A big thank you to Erin for pulling it all together!

Sunday, October 9, 2011

You'd Think It Was Summer...

Although the BFF just posted that there's snow in Albuquerque, there's no such weather here in New England (how does that make sense?) We had some chilly fall temps this past week, but this weekend was GORGEOUS. It was in the 80s both yesterday and today and I spent the majority of the weekend outside. Today, I even got a sunburn. Oops!

Today I started with a half marathon. I mean, I ran four miles last weekend, so what's 13.1?? Just kidding. I didn't run at all today. I was a spectator at the B.A.A. Half Marathon. My sister, her friend, and a few other friends of mine were running, so the hubs and I went out to cheer them on.

This picture doesn't actually have anyone I know in it. They all ran by really quickly, and it was a HUGE race, so I didn't get any pictures. I saw our friend at the five mile mark, but I didn't see my sister, so I hopped on my bike and rode to the finish line. I stood at mile 13, and I saw my sister's friend, but I never saw my sister. I was totally bummed about it because I wanted to push her like she pushed me in my tri, but no such luck. I ran down to the finish line and luckily I found her there!

They kicked butt, even though it was HOT and HILLY (what a horrible combo). It was not my sister's first 1/2, but I'm still super proud of her for doing ANOTHER ONE. Crazy? It runs in the family.

Since I was out in Jamaica Plain anyway, I met up with a friend of mine who just moved out there for a walk. Her new place is right by the Arnold Arboretum, so we figure it'd be a nice place for a walk. Well, it's more than a nice place. It's a beautiful place that's great for walks. I didn't take my camera with me, but it's really a sight to see. It's hard to believe it's in the city!

We ended up walking just about 5 miles through the hilly park, and it felt so good. I really don't love running, but long walks and challenging walks I love love love. You get to see so much without feeling like dying, so I think it's great.

I rode my bike home after our walk, but the seat broke some how, so I had to stop every few minutes to adjust it and it was VERY annoying...and pretty much the most uncomfortable thing ever. Regardless, I got A LOT of walking/biking in today and it was wonderful. Just how a weekend should be.

Some people in Boston have tomorrow off (cough::thehubs::cough), but I have to go to work. Good thing I like my job. Time to prep for the should be a great one, I even have a blogger event! Exciting! :)

Not So Fall After All

I love, love, love fall. It makes me so happy that our house is decorated for Halloween, there are apple cider K-Cups in our jar and the leaves are starting to change colors. But do you know what I saw when I was driving around yesterday?? Snow on the mountains. Seriously.

This week I increased my running distance by 10%. I had to run the 3.6 miles on the treadmill but I didn't mind it so much because Sabrina was on and I haven't seen it in such a long time. When I was getting close to finishing my run I made the mistake of looking at the timer and started to get upset about not running as fast as I was months ago. Thankfully my good sense kicked in and I remembered that it is going to take time to rebuild my running, it's not going to happen overnight and the focus is rebuilding endurance not just speed.

I had some other great workouts this week - yoga, weight training on legs, back and bicep and am planning an ab workout for this afternoon. Overall, it was a week of quality workouts but not a lot of workouts.

E! is showing the Kim Kardashian wedding tonight and I'm looking forward to watching it! Happy Sunday!

Monday, October 3, 2011

A Lengthy Update

I was out of town last week and then had family visiting for the weekend so my post is a bit lengthy!

Jay had a work conference in Colorado and I was fortunate enough to be allowed to tag along. While he was in meetings I was able to explore the gigantic resort property, run laps around the beautiful property, work out in their fully equipped gym (seriously, it might have even been nicer than my regular gym!) and relax.

I loved the fresh Colorado air and really enjoyed sitting by the fire at night. During the afternoons when Jay didn't have meetings we checked out the local sites that included a scenic drive up to Pike's Peak. Fall is my favorite season and seeing the yellow, orange and red leaves on our drive made me so happy!! About an hour later, we made it to the top. Can you believe there was snow and ice up there?!
Yes, Jay did not pack a jacket and I did offer to share my hoodie and zebra scarf but for whatever reason he chose to freeze instead.

We also took an afternoon to visit the 7 Falls, aside from having to climb the 200+ stairs to get to the top (hello fear of heights) it was great! The drive to the waterfalls included landmark points that made sure to check out, can you see the profile of George Washington in this photo?
Our favorite meal was at an English style pub called The Golden Bee. Everyone at the conference had recommended it and it did live up to the high expectations- the beer was cold and the lamb burgers were delicious! It is apparently their tradition to throw a sticky, embroidered bee on the guests when the sit down; I wonder if I can sew or iron on my bee to a sweater? There was a little fashion mishap (I actually underpacked!) that sent us to a nearby Ross in search of an outfit to wear to a cocktail hour. I thought looking like a bat would be a good look so I went with this outfit...Totally kidding, I did find a cute pencil skirt though.

While we were in Colorado a certain somebody turned 3 years old! She spent the day hanging out with me, eating hotel puppy cookies and you know relaxing in bed. This was her first stay in a hotel and she did so well!! This dog seriously keeps amazing me.

This past weekend my parents and sister came up to attend the annual Balloon Fiesta (and to watch the Lobos get their butts kicked)! It's the one day of the year that waking up at 4:30 a.m. is okay with everyone.

Yay a Halloween balloon!

Jay received an invite via work to attend a dinner balloon glow on Sunday evening; despite being tired we were excited to go again!! This particular event is where a lot of the balloons are set up on the large field and they pilots light them up so they glow and you can walk around on the field and see the balloons up close.

Honestly, I got dressed this evening to go to the gym and didn't go! I know I need to but I just had zero motivation. To prevent me from making up an excuse tomorrow, I've made plans with a friend to go to a yoga class. I'll update again soon!

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Wedding Weekend

This weekend was absolutely wonderful. We went to Maine to celebrate my uncle and his partner being legally married. I have always referred to them collectively as "my uncles" but now it's legal and has been rightfully celebrated!

On Friday, after my nice morning off (read: after starting out late and running a bunch of errands for other people including buying shoes for the hubs), I met my gma at the bus stations, picked up the hubs, picked up my sister and headed north. We were stuck in some annoying traffic for the middle of the day, but the company was good. We made the mistake of leaving right at lunch time, so we had to stop almost right away. We picked a random exit with nothing but McDonalds for fast food, so we ended up going to Trader Joe's instead to piece together lunch. Good thing I love TJ's!

Once we finally got back on the road and out of traffic, we got to Maine around 3pm. We took my gma over to her hotel (where the wedding was being held) and hung out at the bar for a bit while people checked in. Eventually my mom and my brother showed up and we checked into our hotel down the street. Usually, when we're in Maine, we stay at my uncles' place, but they were a little busy this time, so the hotel it was. My mom was generous enough to book the room for us, and since it was not cheap, 5 of us shared one room. Oh yeah. It was like an episode of Modern Family, but without the cleverly written jokes or the Spanish lady.

The rehearsal dinner/welcome to Maine party was so much fun. It was really nice to see people I haven't seen in a while, and catch-up without the formalities of the wedding going on just yet. I used to work for my uncle's husband (so fun to say that now!), so a few of my old coworkers were there, and I work for my uncle now, so a few of my current coworkers were there, and it made for a fun night. There was even a gayke.

(A little back story on the gayke. Three years ago when Johnny and I had just moved to Boston, we went over to my uncles' place for a Pride Party in Boston. It was the day before my uncle's birthday, so it was a multipurpose party, and I thought a cake would be perfect. But since it was Pride, I couldn't make just anyway, so I made a rainbow cake! It was a hit and it was affectionately named the The one above was made by a pro with fondant, but my gayke was the original, and I'm honored that my uncles' loved the idea so much that not only have I made it for the last three years for Pride, but they had one for the wedding!)

I had a little too much fun Friday night and woke up a little sluggish on Saturday morning, but luckily I have an amazing sister. If you happen to follow me on Twitter (@MaddieOgren) you would have seen this:

OH HECK YES! I ran four miles with my sister! I wasn't planning on doing a whole lot of anything Saturday morning, but when I my sister asked if I wanted to run with her, I decided I couldn't pass up the chance. She's running a half marathon next weekend, and had done her last long run Thursday night, so she just needed to shake-out her legs. Running at my pace would be fine with her, so why not? It was not a fast four miles, and there were four very short, unmeasured walk breaks involved, but there was also four miles of running! Forget the hangover, I felt amazing! I love having a new distance record and already feeling closer to my five mile goal!

I've been having pretty bad runs lately, so this felt so good. Sometimes the good ones come when you least expect it! 

We jumped in the shower, went to get our hair done, and were at the wedding by 2:30pm. We had to take some family pictures, so we were nice and early to the main event. Unfortunately, it was raining most of the weekend, but everything was in a BEAUTIFUL glass sunroom that was constructed for the event (think a regular wedding tent on crack). To save this from being the longest post ever, I won't give you the play-by-play, but here are some pictures to recap a lavish and wonderful event.

the ceremony

mirrored tables!

my daddy and me <3

gorgeous place settings

amazing food...6 courses total with wine pairings for each

dressed to kill

all the details were so beautiful
The affair was absolutely fantastic. The setting was beautiful and the company couldn't have been better. There were also fireworks! Really? Yes, really. I'm telling you, this was the party of the century. I danced my butt off and was one of the last people to leave. It was a BLAST. This morning, getting to brunch was tough. I didn't drink all that much (since I had my fair share on Friday), but sharing a hotel room with 4 other people and sleeping on a slightly deflated blow-up bed two nights in a row made me TIRED. The drive back was long and exhausting (not was like 2 hours, but it felt like forever) and I passed out on the couch for a good two hours right after we got home. Johnny was the responsible adult and went to the grocery store and heated up chicken soup for dinner, so I'll at least be starting the week on the right foot. It was an incredible weekend, but it feels so good to be home! The grind is going to come far to early tomorrow...