Tuesday, July 09, 2013
Saturday I was up and out of the house early but not too early for a race day. The Run or Dye 5K peeps were setting up and ready to take us on at 7:30 a.m. for check-ins. That meant I was leaving my place at 7:00 a.m. to head over to Candlestick Park by San Francisco. I'll admit now, it was strange not being up at the crack of dawn only to stumble out of the house to show up at the start line just as the sun decided to make a full on appearance. Yet, I was okay with it too.
Months ago I found entry fees on Groupon.com and nudged my workout friend about signing up. We scored entry fees for $22 each. A great bargain for a fun run. Yup, Run or Dye races are not timed events so unless you keep your own it's just gonna be about the experience.
For those of you reading this that have not done a Run or Dye race, yet know that on race day the lines for check-in are LONG. For many reasons we didn't pickup our race packet prior to race day so we stood in line with the masses. It was a little crazy but it appeared they got everyone checked in prior to the first race starting at 9:00 a.m. Yup, they had two races that day ... 9:00 a.m. and 11:00 a.m. I'm not sure if this is typical of all locations but if it is I strongly urge fellow racers to register for the first race of the day.
Within the swag bag we received a Run or Dye t-shirt and a bag of dye. I received ORANGE! My unofficial FAVORITE color of all time. My friend received blue. After getting ready for the race ... they suggest wearing white so the color shows better ... the fun began. People color each other! Yup, the dye was flying and people were giggling with joy.
They release runners/walkers in waves ... we were lined up by 9:00 a.m. and finally crossed the start line at 9:30. They keep you entertained with music and of course dyeing you. The energy in the crowd is off the charts and the happiness being shared is infectious. Unfortunately my friend was a bit of downer as she doesn't like to wait and announced when we did cross the start line that she was tired from all the standing around. I choose to ignore the comment and off I went.
Our course wasn't all that exciting, more like a maze around the giant parking lot. AND the inclines were a breathing taking ... like they took my breath away. LOL.
The dye stations were FUN! Don't be afraid to get in and get dyed! My friend kinda got it but I was full on GIVE IT TO ME! You get out of a situation what you put into to and you only get something if you ask for it ... I got mine.
After crossing the finish line the party really started to get going. They had a full on stage with music and color was in the air. I loved it ...
Here are my photo's. Yup, I had my iPhone which did get dye dust on it but was not damaged in anyway. I did see some folks had theirs in a zip lock bags to help protect them while others just held them. I had mine in my running belt which protected it while in the dye stations.
I washed my running belt and pants after the race and all the dye did come out. I've yet to wash the shirt and socks so not sure about those items. It's best to wear items that you won't be crushed if the color stays and of course don't wear those $200 running shoes unless you don't mind a bit of dust and dye.
All in all, I am glad I experienced the Run or Dye race. The people were amazing - those working/volunteering and those participating. Go. Have Fun. Get Dyed. Giggle. Don't take it so seriously. Expect to wait in a line or two. Let your inner child out to play! Oh yeah, wear sunglasses.
Tuesday, July 02, 2013
A delayed Part 3
My home computer/office used to be in the living room at the old place so I'd come home from work (8 hrs on the computer) and sit at my desk to eat dinner, watch TV, play scrabble and mindlessly surf the internet. Now that I've moved the system into the spare room I rarely use the computer when I return home from work. This is definitely a positive step but I miss some of the connectivity I had - I'll get over it. It's healthier this way. Also, this should also explain why Part 3 has been delayed.
After we moved I went back to the old apartment to clean and clean and clean. I use the oven A LOT and it needed a deep cleaning as did the bathroom. I want my deposit back to replenish the deposit I made for the new place so I sucked it up and started the cleaning process. As I told a friend I think I should apologize to Mother Earth for setting off a chemical bomb in there as I set out to clean. The bathroom was easy. The bedroom and living room just needed to be vacuumed, even though they are going to put down new carpeting. The kitchen was a a different story. I generally clean the oven with all natural products but this time I bought the heavy duty cleaners ... it worked and everything looked great when I was finished. I might have killed a piece of my lung due to the fumes though. *FACE/PALM*
I held onto our keys till the bitter end. After all, I paid for the space SO I was going to keep the space. Others in my life were a bit sad that I was leaving this home behind but I tell ya what, I didn't look back. I handed over those keys and was happy to walk out the front door for the last time. The manager expressed how great the apartment looked after 10.5 years and that the carpet was in great shape. *SMILES* Being able to walk out without looking back confirmed that I had made the right decision! I was now at peace AND I was done.
A few days later I had a check-in regarding my weight loss. What with starting medication for a tired thyroid and moving I wasn't sure where I would be. At one point I was down to 198 but I knew that was temporary due to being completely dehydrated and eating minimal amounts of calories in a day. I was okay with this and took comfort in the fact that I had in fact made it to the other side of 200 again. It confirmed that it was possible and I rejoiced in just knowing this. By the time I did a "real" check-in I'd plumped back up with water and healthy foods but still logged a 2 lbs weight loss. *FIST PUMP* My real success was never allowing myself mentally to be okay with eating foods that didn't offer any nutritional value. My mental wellness journey is my current battle. It's gotten better as I no longer take one piece of chocolate and believe I should have 10. I never gave myself permission to go off my track during this time period ... that was key.
I started unpacking immediately, trying to find some order amongst what seemed like madness. It's been slow going due to being pulled in every direction. All I want to do is be in the new place even if that means just sitting still. I'd say at this time 90% of the boxes are unpacked and things are organized. Sadly, it's my clothes and office that are in need of attention.
The furry ones have adjusted nicely. They run, play and often can be found sitting in a window admiring their surroundings. The wee ones went for a checkup the other day ... a clean bill of health. I suspect with all the room to roam my big boys will drop the 3 lbs that the vet said would be ideal. Irie is no longer waking me up in the middle of the night which has helped with my sleep quality which helps with my state of mind.
I've mentioned before the Mr being on a program I don't necessarily approve of but he's happily losing weight and eating healthy foods. Another happy fact is that we no longer have trigger foods in the house. I still have chocolate in the house but I've tucked it so far up and away that it takes an act of acrobatics to get to it - so much so I don't even bother. HA! Being on the same healthy page has been refreshing. We even get up early on the weekends and go for a 2+ mile walk together.
The new neighborhood is fun to explore. There are things I adore about it and things I just brush away. There's always a good and bad ... I'm choosing to concentrate on the good.
I don't often turn to others for "approval" when it comes to life decisions. I was raised to be independent and self sufficient - a true gift from my parents. So imagine the sting I felt when my own mother questioned two of my decisions: 1) keeping the wee ones and 2) moving. She felt the move was ill timed what with my office in a financial crunch and talks of closing were fresh from two-ish months ago. She also felt strongly that the wee ones should just be given back after all they are expensive. AND, you'll have four if you keep them. *SIGH*
As for the move ... it was either move now or keep killing a piece of myself everyday I lived at the old place. A job is never secure, even after 12 years of service to this one company I know I can be let go at a moments notice.
As for the wee ones ... yup, they can be expensive especially when you take care of them like I do. Yet, I would NOT take part in the "return policy" as listed in the adoption agreement. If I didn't have better manners (learned from said mom) I would have asked dear mom what she would say if I got pregnant ... after all babies/children are darn expensive too. Would she want me to forgo the pregnancy to save a buck &/or adopt the child out (not opposed to that, I'm adopted myself) so I didn't have the expense?
I say all this because sometimes we just have to take flying leap and go! I don't always leap but when I do I've generally done all the homework and weighed the pros and cons. If nothing else ... I was tired of standing still. I understand concerns, especially from mom, but I don't understand negative feedback. It doesn't compute in my world.
In other news: I've started taking an aqua zumba class. What flipp'n fun this has been! It's an evening, 90 minute class in an outside side pool. It's a great way to workout AND to beat the heat. Yesterday I went and bought a new one piece swim suit ... an XL from Wal-Mart. It looks amazing and I feel athletic wearing it. I strutted my stuff on the pool deck last night like I was on the catwalk. I might be curvy but I'm gonna work it!
This weekend I have a color run in SF. My fitness friend and I are still working out the schedule for working out. Now that I'm in a different location I have to do all the traveling. I don't mind that it's just the time it takes to get to and from via the bus and train.
The bay area is HOT this week. All of our beloved fog has left and we're left with the sun trying to cook us to death. I'm hoping this ends NOW. If that's not bad enough our mass transit system ... BART ... is in the middle of a labor dispute which means it's shut down. I now have the pleasure of rising at 5:00 a.m. to catch a 6:13 a.m. bus to arrive an hour early for my job just so I can be at my job. It's messy.
My thyroid medication is maybe working. I have to get retested this month to see. I do know it makes me overheat and nauseous within about an hour of taking it. That makes me think an adjustment is needed.
So as you can tell ... crossing over to the other side has not come without growth pains. I've learned a lot in the process and I take comfort in knowing I made it and I'm better for it. Change is constant and it's darn uncomfortable BUT it's necessary to if you want to move forward.
What's next for me? Not sure. I know I'll write about my color run. Be well and know ... YOU.ARE.FABULOUS!
Friday, June 21, 2013
The day before the movers were to show-up the Mr and his childhood friend from Jamaica headed off on a road trip to South Lake Tahoe. Through a college program in Jamaica she is able to be placed in various places during the summer to work here in the U.S. This trip brought her to our neck of the woods. Yup, worst timing EVER but I was secretly happy she arrived as the Mr was beaming with joy. This was the first visit from anyone back home.
With the two of them out of the apartment I got busy with the final packing. Of course, at this point I threatened to put it all in the backyard, toss a match and let it burn. O_o
A friend of mine came by and unmounted our television from the wall and then mounted it at the new place. Even though I offered to pay him his hourly rate he refused and said to call the next day if something came up. What a sweetheart ... he saved me $300 by doing this. Yup, Best Buy was going to charge me that much to do the same thing. I'm still trying to figure out a thank-you gift!
The cable guy installed cable/phone/internet that afternoon. It took HOURS. Although he was a nice enough guy I just wanted to be quick and easy ... it wasn't but he got it done so I was thankful.
That night, I took all four of the furry ones to the new place. Their anxiety levels were off the charts and my insides were twisted with concern. I stayed with them for hours at the new place but not much I did reassured them that all would be okay. The babies were fine, they took it as one big adventure so played and played in all the open space. Our two older boys were temporarily traumatized. The vet said they'd be fine as long as some of our stuff was in the new place and we spent a bit of time with them prior to leaving them overnight. Ya, I'm not sure her meaning of "fine" is the same as mine. In the end, they made it.
The day of the move I was up EARLY. Early enough to go out to pick up a cup of coffee and come home and have a hot breakfast of scrambled eggs. I was determined to eat healthy through this process and I would need all that protein too.
Throughout the years with the office and my bosses personal moves we've always used Delancey Street Movers. Knowing they are the best, I too hired them for this move. Delancey Street is a nonprofit organization that helps individuals help themselves find a better path in life. Here's a link if you are interested in learning more about the foundation. I can't say enough good things about them and the crews I've had the pleasure of working with over the years.
True to form, my crew showed up an hour early. HA! I was completely ready to go. They were thrilled that I had reserved parking for them on the street too. Many people don't know that can be done and is more cost effective than paying for tickets. We finished the preliminary paperwork and walk through in record time after which they got busy. Here's where it gets awkward for me - standing around as they do all the work - it just not in my nature. Loading up was the easiest part - I lived on the ground floor so they didn't have stairs to deal with and everything but the two floor lamps were boxed. Plus I used manageable sized boxes that didn't weigh 1,000 lbs each.
After they finished loading it was time to head to the new place. I found my furry ones doing well. The older boys were still stressed but nothing had been torn up or "marked." I was able to love on them prior to the movers showing up which made us all feel good. Luckily there is a small room off the kitchen that I kept them in during the move.
After the walk through they started loading in the boxes and furniture. It was all going smoothly UNTIL it was time for the couch. My initial concern about the banister was soon forgotten as the couch fit up the stairs just fine but getting it in the door was another story. Here enters my second panic attack. Our couch has a sofa bed it so it's heavy which didn't seem to phase the guys but it wore them down when they had to twist, turn, flip and take it up and down the stairs multiple times. I had no backup plan if it didn't fit so I paced and nearly got sick - my stomach was in my throat. The couch is relatively new - less than a year old so we wanted to keep it but not have to store it.
After many failed attempts, they got to work on taking the feet off - that was a job too. At this point their boss at home base called my cell phone to check on progress (crews are not allowed to carry cell phones on the job). We chatted and then I gave the foreman the phone to which he said, "at the moment I'm getting my butt kicked by a couch." Then there was silence, a few huh's and then he hung up. He looked at me and repeated the message from the boss - "breath and it will come to you." At that moment I could have cried ... such a simple message - a message for life - and this man standing in front of me said, "don't worry I won't leave here until your couch is in your new apartment. I promise you that." An hour after the battle started they put my couch down in the living room. When I mentioned that anyone else would have simply given up their heads all snapped and the foreman responded with, "we've given up too much in life, we don't take the simple or easy way out anymore - that's not who we are." SERIOUSLY!?! I just wanted to put him in my back pocket and keep him.
The move took longer than anticipated and it cost A LOT more than I thought it would but I was prepared and it was worth every penny! Before they left one of the crewmen asked about the cats and commented that they didn't get to see them. Another one asked about their names and instantly knew the Irie was a Jamaican name. It was one of the sweetest things ever!! In the end, they both came up stairs so they could get a peak at them.
After they left I laid down on the floor and just took a minute to actually breath and to take in what had just happened. It was over and I was officially on the other side. It didn't even matter if I was surrounded by boxes and that I wasn't real sure where the bed linens were ... I had made it.
Now that I had made it to the other side there much to do. What comes next? The cleaning of the old and the unpacking of the new. Where was I on my wellness journey? Had I lost? Gained? Maintained? Stay tuned ... Part 3 has answers and so much more.
Wednesday, June 19, 2013
So much has happened in the last few weeks that my head is still spinning.
After ten and half years in the same apartment - five of which were spent with the Mr living there - it became clear a change needed to happen when I started feeling trapped and like I was suffocating.
Change may be constant but darn it, it's scary! I'd built a life in my small community and this home was the only one the Mr has known after his immigration to the U.S. Yet, I was determined to move forward and find a bigger unit, within our price range, in a safe neighborhood and near public transportation. That IS a tall order when you live in the bay area but I was determined and I kept repeating my criteria over and over again. THEN it happened, the universe responded.
Nestled in Old San Leandro is a small 10-unit complex that is a flash back to when they knew what character meant and people didn't want to live inside a box. I was the first to respond to the add and we were the only couple to see the unit. The others kept asking about it, setting up appointments and the cancelling the appointments.
The Mr's first reaction to the place ... I don't like it. WHAT?! Unable to actually communicate his emotions a small war began. I took my best friend down the next night to view the place to make sure I wasn't making up the fabulousness of the place and she confirmed what I was feeling - it's fabulous! With 24-hours of the Mr seeing the place his mindset had changed and he was all in. The adverse reaction came from being scared of change, moving to an unknown area and leaving the only U.S. home he'd ever known. Well, now, that's completely understandable!!
Within a four days we had inked the lease, slapped down some cash and the apartment was deemed ours. Confetti did not fall and there was no happy dance on my part though. I went into complete panic mode. I silently worried about EVERYTHING! My worry and paranoia ranged from maybe the property manager wasn't who she said she was and I was giving the wrong person deposit money and the apartment wasn't really ours and progressed on to what if the NEW couch doesn't fit up the stairs and in the front door.
I had a panic/anxiety attack one night about the couch that nearly sent me over the edge. I finally had to go to bed to shut down the madness in my brain. When I finally talked to the Mr about the situation he initial was upset about the prospects of the couch not fitting but we then came to the same conclusion ... it's a couch - nothing more nothing less.
The packing started out strong. Having moved my office and boss a number of times I had access to boxes and I used every last one of them and then some. So much stuff! I purged and donated as I packed but we still have too much stuff. I'll deal with that soon enough.
The property manager was gracious enough to give us keys the weekend prior to our actual lease date. This was great because I moved all my kitchen items over prior to the big move and setup the kitchen. I have A LOT of kitchen items that are put to use everyday due to the fact that I cook almost every meal. Eating out for us is a true treat.
While all this was happening I was on the phone constantly with vendors etc to change addresses and services. That's a job in and of itself! To stay organized I started a notebook that has saved the day more than once.
The Mr moved most of his clothes over prior to the big move. Again this was to help save money when it came to the movers time. Plus, he needed something to do! :)
With all this madness happened we had an unexpected house guest arrive from Jamaica. The Mr hasn't had a friend or family member come visit since he moved here five years ago and then two days before the movers were to show up a friend was suddenly at our front door.
Plus! We adopted the foster fur babies. Lilly and Tuff joined our family which made us a house of six. A little crazy but I can't imagine life without them.
What's next? Well, the move of course and yet another panic attack and so much more. Stay tuned for Part 2.
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