Monday, December 31, 2012
Sunday, December 30, 2012
Six months ago I lost my workout mojo. Summer fun kept me out of the gym, and then I took on the full-time second job which all but ate up any extra time I had. After four months of wasting my gym membership dues, I quit. I knew at the time that it may be a bad idea to fully quit because then I had nothing pulling me to get back to working out, but at the same time the whole point of working two jobs is to save money so wasting $52 a month was counterproductive.
Since then I’ve done some research on other gym options around Victoria. I need something cheaper, and more importantly something convenient. If I’m going to fit a workout in between jobs and making sure my little pooper is looked after, then it has to be at a place I can get to quickly and easily.
A couple of weeks ago I came across an 8-Day Free Trial at Steve Nash Fitness World. It’s so close to home I could probably reach out an touch it on a clear day. I took the quick intro tour of the gym, the manager set me up with my pass, and told me about the membership details, and I went on my merry way. After almost exactly six months out of the gym, I was slightly terrified that my lungs might collapse and I wouldn’t be able to carry more than a 3 pound weight.
Thankfully I can still jog at a good pace, I can still walk a set of lunges, and I can still curl a couple of dumbbells. I might have had to start with one set, and I might have needed a good epsom bath after only 24 squats, but I did it. And I had fun. And I went back three more times during that 8 day pass.
On my fourth trip to the gym, I signed up for a membership. I don’t care that their gym is older and less fancy than Goodlife. It’s less than half the price I was paying before, it’s so close to home I can’t very well use inconvenience as an excuse, and it has every piece of equipment or class I could ever want. Next week I will take advantage of a free session with one of the personal trainers, get my body composition recorded and set myself some simple short term goals.
By joining before the January rush I feel like I pre-empted any feelings I might potentially have about it being a New Year’s resolution that could fail. Instead it’s just a lovely Christmas present to myself that I am looking forward to getting tons of use out of. Merry Christmas to me, indeed!
Anyone else find their fitness mojo this holiday season? Any suggestions for keeping the feeling going through the New Year?
Saturday, December 29, 2012
I’m so glad I picked out a basic little black dress back a couple of months ago. I’ve put it to good use during the holidays.
We first saw it appear for my birthday party…
A few weekends ago we attended both my work Christmas dinner and Michael’s work Christmas dinner. My same dress appeared at his party…a yummy affair in the recently renovated Crystal Ballroom at The Fairmont Empress.
And then I wore the dress from his last year’s party to my this year’s party…a cool event held at the Royal BC Museum. Our catered dinner was served up in Old Town among the cobblestones.
This past weekend we hosted a pre-Christmas family party and I found myself fishing around in the back of my closet for a different dress. This little blue denim number has saved a few ‘I need an outfit’ moments.
For Christmas Day I guess I never found time to stare at myself in the mirror because I have no photos of myself, but rest assured you aren’t missing out because that same little black dress made another appearance.
Tis the season of versatility. I’m appreciating it for sure.
Do you repurpose the same outfit? Or do you find you feel more festive with something new? Thankfully I don’t require an outfit for New Years Eve!
Sunday, December 16, 2012
For my birthday I received the new Smitten Kitchen cookbook.
Almost everyone who has ever surfed the internet for a recipe has ended up on Smitten Kitchen at one time or another. She has recipes for everything.
As I flipped through the book I immediately flagged a dozen recipes to try as soon as possible. Sunday dinners are going to be so fun in the New Year.
Before the holiday season kicks into full gear I decided to sneak in one more cozy dinner for two while I still had the chance. Last weekend I took over Michael’s kitchen and tackled two recipes from the book.
The Mini Meatloaves with Browned Butter Mashed Potatoes were just as good as the name suggests. I loved that there were no ‘odd’ or ‘special’ ingredients…just normal things we generally keep in our pantries or can easily grab from the supermarket. The meatloaf was so moist and flavourful…and made excellent leftovers. And how could browned butter mashed potatoes be anything but ah-mazing? You know we gobbled those down.
I served the meal with sauteed Brussels sprouts. A comfort food marriage.
For a Sunday night treat I chose the Whole Lemon Bars because Michael loves anything lemony. These came together so fast and easy (would have been even easier if I’d had a food processor there instead of a blender!) and are a great adaptation of a traditional lemon bar.
The crust is crisp and sugar-cookie like, while the top is fresh, tart and creamy. Can’t ask for much more from a lemon bar now can we?
You can see here how Michael just couldn’t wait to dig in.
This entire Smitten Kitchen meal will be finding it’s way into regular rotation. We were both particularly pleased with our Sunday dinner. Yum!
Friday, December 07, 2012
In between my constant sitting at desks and staring at computer screens I’ve managed to snag a couple of Saturdays off here and there. Last weekend I was determined not to work for a whole day so we could dedicate that day to getting our festive on.
This year I’ve opted to take the majority of my Christmas decor over to Michael’s since we’ll be spending the actual holiday there with our families.
My poor apartment is a wee bit sad with it’s lack of festive decorations now though. The Charlie Brown Xmas tree is quite fitting this year!
And I kept my beloved Gingerbread House here until closer to actual Christmas. This year it even has a Gingerbread scented candle inside, which has totally helped to put me in the mood a few nights this week!
Next up: Preparing Christmas cards, and trying to do all of my shopping in one day. Challenge accepted!
How goes your Christmas preparations?
Thursday, November 22, 2012
In between jobs and sleep I somehow found time to plan my birthday. This year I decided to keep it simple by just going out for a lovely dinner with my sweetie, then having some friends over for a few drinks and some cake.
Oh and no birthday is complete without a Sweet 16 from Cupcakes!
This year’s birthday dinner took place at Brasserie L’ecole. We tried to go last year but the wait list was an hour and a half long. We managed to sneak some seats at the bar right at the start of the dinner hour this time.
French onion soup, mussels with fancy frites, warm lemon pudding cake, and perfect white wine chosen by the bartender for me. It was all exactly what I wanted, and exactly as delicious as I had envisioned.
On Saturday night we invited some folks out to the ‘burbs, where we enjoyed too many appetizers, a homemade cake built almost entirely of buttercream, and my own personal bottle of pink bubbly.
My birthday prezzie to myself? A fresh new do! A little Autumn ombre to mix things up in my 37th year.
Oh hello bangs. Happy birthday to me! :)