Friday, November 13, 2009

Four Things:

1. I'm joining the gym today. This makes me incredibly happy.

2. I'm volunteering this afternoon for five hours. This also makes me happy. The husband was concerned the particular group I've volunteering for was going to take over my life, so he (and this never happens, btw) insisted I choose one day every few weeks to work for them.

3. The two inches of leaves that covered our half-acre lot have been relocated to the garden, where they will rot and turn into compost. I hope. There must be 2-3 feet of leaves covering the entire garden plot. Is it possible for such a big pile of leaves to decompose over winter? I guess we'll find out.

4. After a month of searching, three trips and two phone calls to the PB, we bought our couch:

Isn't it beautiful? The only big piece of furniture that G and I have bought is our mattress and box spring, so this was a big deal for us. We didn't want to buy new furniture when we lived in our apartment because I didn't want to invest a lot of money into decorating a temporary living space. It's taking us a while to put together the living room, but it's kind of fun. For me. Now that we have fabric swatches for the armchair and the couch, we're going to start looking for a rug. That might not be so much fun...

The only bad news about the couch is that its estimated arrival date is January 7.

Have a good weekend! We're spending tomorrow morning cleaning our apartment, and then I'm helping my very pregnant friend with Christmas shopping. Saturday night we're going to game night at our church - hopefully we'll meet some more people our age that live in our area. Good times!

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

The Gym

Last night I went to the gym near our house. We received a “free pass” in the mail last week inviting us to try it out, and since I’ve wanted to join a gym since leaving our apartment (and it’s free mini gym) I figured I’d make use of the pass.

I knew that using the free pass probably meant that I would get the whole membership spiel and club tour. And I did. Unfortunately for Justin, the guy who tried to sell me a membership, as an intern during college I’d sat through over fifty similar sales attempts and club tours for another major health club chain. In fact, I had also gone through an intensive sales course in which I learned the ins and outs of selling club memberships (just as an aside, this is funny for several reasons: 1) I took the class with people who were certified personal trainers and devoted their life to the gym – I am clearly not that person, and 2) this training included several days devoted to learning how certain pieces of gym equipment exercise certain muscles and required a final “exam” in which each person would walk the other personal trainers through the gym and have to explain/demonstrate how the equipment worked (not my cup of tea) – you can only imagine my relief when the instructor of the course informed me that I didn’t have to lead a tour)). As a result of my experience, I have a pretty good idea of what kinds of questions to ask, and I think I have a decent idea of what contract no-nos are. While I cannot be entirely certain, I’m sure my salesman was bending a few rules when he offered me a higher priced membership for a lower enrollment fee, and then told me that my husband could join the club in February (two months later than I would be joining) for no registration fee. “No worries,” he said, “just tell ‘em Justin said it was okay.”


Anyway, I met my friend R at the gym. She’s great. R thought we should start our workout on the stair stepper machine. I hadn’t been on one since college, and after about 6 minutes of thigh burning pain I remembered why it had been that long: stair machines are brutal. You feel great when you’re done, but getting to that point is challenging. Then we hit the elliptical machines for a while, which provided us with an opportunity to talk normally (meaning I wasn’t panting or randomly interjecting the conversation with “this is so painful,” “how much time do we have left,” or “this really stinks.”). We ended our trip to the gym with a trip to the mat pilates class.

Mat pilates was 100 times worse than the stair stepper.

The instructor led us through a series of what I would consider super intense yoga poses. The music was faster, she was louder, and the poses were at least twice as fast as they were in my old yoga class. I made it through the first 15 minutes of class with minor complaining. It wasn’t until we started a particular sequence of motions (on back, neck up, calves 90 degrees to the floor, hands next to knees and then you stretch your legs out straight just above the floor and move your arms straight back behind your head) that I really started to feel uncomfortable. She kept going and going. Every time we finished a set I though to myself “thank god,” and then she would start counting again. And again. And again. We must have done 10 long sets. I was ready to bail out, but every time I looked in front of me I saw R pushing right through the motions like a pro, so I kept going (but I’ll be the first to admit I didn’t keep my neck elevated – painful, painful). Our ab workout was followed by some thigh exercises that involved this metal ring that you put between your lower thighs. Then we “pulsed” (pushed the ring in and out) for what felt like forever. R had to leave 30 minutes into the class, and I had to go with her since the husband was hanging out with her husband at her house. We left, laughing about how much our legs hurt and how poorly prepared we were for the class. It turns out that we had both been watching each other during the class – after I told R she kept me motivated, she said the same thing. I guess that’s why they say you should go to the gym with a friend.

Despite how horrible it sometimes feels when you're working out, the euphoric feeling that immediately follows a workout session is incredible. I love it! The husband and I are looking into our health care plan's contributions to gym memberships - hopefully I'll have one sometime this month!

In other news, I think we’re finally going to buy a couch tonight. Yes!

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Baby Kimono Tops

On Sunday afternoon, I decided I wanted to start a new sewing project. Since two of my closest friends are both having babies in the next few months, I opted to try sewing baby clothes - baby kimono tops, to be specific. I think they're a lot cuter in real life, but these pictures should give you an idea as to what they look like.

My first attempt (Cotton. Chocolate brown w/ cream polka dots. Pink edging.):

The kimono top I made tonight (flannel):

I'm going to consider these trial runs. The armpits need some work and I think the edging needs to be thinner. I should also add a snap under the ties to make the closures little more secure. I should probably also make something a little more gender neutral since I have no idea what the sex of either baby is...

Monday, November 2, 2009

Weekend Review

We spent part of Friday night at Home Depot comparing specs on wet/dry vacs. I know, I know, you're probably jealous that you couldn't spend your Friday night doing the same thing... We needed one after the disastrous event that took place in the garage that morning.

We spent Saturday with the husband's parents. We had lunch at our new favorite Chinese restaurant in the TC area (which, unfortunately, is way across town) and then continued our hunt for the perfect couch. Turns out we like the same three couches we saw the last few times we went out. Now we just have to pick one...

Halloween was a bust at Casa K. We had no more than 15 kids stop by. Now we have over 200 pixie sticks we don't want. What happened to trick-or-treating?! I remember my parents doling out candy for hours. There were periods of time where we just stood next to the door because the stream of kids was so steady. Later that night we went to our neighbor's house for a Halloween party. It was nice to meet some more of our neighbors.

Sunday was pretty quiet. Church at 8:30 followed by errands and projects. I managed to pick up some fun projects for the week:

Lots of good stuff in this picture:

1. Please note the glass sitting on top of our console table. The friendly folks at ACE cut it for me yesterday afternoon. I added the vinyl protector thingies and put it on the table. Looks good!

2. My trip to the library this weekend yielded three "fun" books for the week: two cookbooks and a sewing book.

3. After picking up the sewing book, I went to a craft store and picked up some fabric and thread for a new project. The colors are pink and brown. Any guesses as to what I'm making?

Sunday, November 1, 2009


I need these:

[image & more information]

We went to a Halloween party last night and someone was raving about them. I must have them. I looked for them while running errands today, but I couldn't find them anywhere. I'm a little nervous about the disclaimer under the image, so I'm making an urgent request to friends and family: If you see coconut M&Ms, PLEASE buy me a bag. Or more. I will obviously reimburse you.