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Update on the job front

Monday, October 06, 2014

I recently blogged that I got a new job!! It came so fast--I got the offer on 9/25 and I needed to fill in my forms by Monday 9/29. Well, I did, and even though the HR guy hasn't been the most responsive, he sent me an email--BEFORE I even received my final offer letter, that he wanted me onboard by 10/20. Ummm I haven't even told my employers because I was waiting for the final offer. And, my salary is actually still tentative (before you say anything, I work for the government which has a standardized system, so I will either be staying the same or going up, obviously I'd prefer to go up, but worst case I stay the same). but uh, yeah, still would like to know. I also was expecting for it to take some time they had to run several background and other checks on me--guess they can still move forward before those are done (not that they'll find anything, but still). Soooo yeah, my current employer knows and I'm hopefully starting in TWO weeks. I am so so glad with my decision. They are not even backfilling my current position with the same type of job so had I stayed I a) probably wouldnt have gotten my promotion and b) been asked to do different types of work that I don't really want to do. I have a niche-area degree. I WANT to be doing work in said niche-area. Hence, my new job--yay!

As for my "other job," I had one sale on my Etsy shop!! one day after I opened!! super exciting! I'm still struggling with my "online presence" on social media and getting exposure, but hopefully I'll get there (and just to put one more plug in, please check it out, favorite it, etc: I added a few more pieces over the weekend!

On the food/fitness front, I've been terrible. I'm inconsistent and avoiding the scale. Over the weekend I only exercised on Saturday but it was totally negated. I had pizza. We went to a fall festival and got a giant bag of kettle corn then visited a winery. Yesterday I was craving carbs like crazy (probably due to the slight overindulgence in wine, ugh my own fault). But, I forced myself to meal prep and I have breakfasts and lunches planned for this week and I went grocery shopping stocking up on produce and healthy things. emoticon

It's been stressful--and it will continue to be, transitioning to my new job. And I've been spending a lot of time jewelry making and promoting my shop. I cannot let other things slip. My goals for are Oct are pretty simple--be more consistent with food and fitness and less (ahem) wine. emoticon

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

RYDERB 10/31/2014 12:30AM

    emoticon Sounds like you've got lots of exciting things happening in your life. emoticon

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CHODGES83 10/7/2014 11:57AM

    Sounds like exciting changes coming your way! Congrats again on the new position and opening your etsy store! A simple goals sound like the best way to go during your transition.

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CARADAWN 10/7/2014 10:13AM

    I just looked at your store and love your designs! I have sever allergies to most jewelry (have to stick to 14k+ gold) or I would buy some. You are definitely talented emoticon

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ARUNNINGKAT 10/6/2014 3:17PM

    SO excited for you on the new job! Sounds like just what you needed and in the nick of time too!

Your plans sounds simple and like just what you need for this crazy month!

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CLRWILLIAMS25 10/6/2014 1:16PM

    Excited for you and your new job! sounds like you had a fun weekend, even if things got a little bit off track. Planning meals out for the week is a great way to reassess and get back on track. BONUS- planning out meals always helps reduce my anxiety, so I hope it does for you too :)

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BRAINYBLONDE5 10/6/2014 11:44AM

  yeee so excited about this new job for you!

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BEFIT_WITHGUSTO 10/6/2014 11:43AM

    So happy you accepted the new job! I bet that will make a huge difference in all aspects of your life!

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IAMZBEE 10/6/2014 11:38AM

    I am SUPER happy for you about the job stuff. emoticon

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PHHHISC 10/6/2014 11:18AM


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STODD251 10/6/2014 11:00AM

    Yay new job! Planning ahead and keeping meals simple is always my best strategy when life gets crazy for me. Hope all goes well!

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Etsy shop!!

Monday, September 29, 2014

Pardon me while I shamelessly promote the opening of my Etsy shop!!!!
can also "like" my page at
Instagram: designsbyslw
Pinterest: sdlee514 and I have a board you can follow that's just my jewelry.

So happy!!! This has been a labor of love for a long time. I know it's not health/fitness related but I just had to share. Again, excuse my excessive self-promotion!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

STODD251 10/6/2014 11:01AM

    This is so exciting! Now I want to go buy some jewelry from you! I remember how amazed I was by the necklace you were wearing in one of the photos you posted way back when. I am definitely checking this out when I get home from work!

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SONICB 9/29/2014 3:24PM

    CONGRATULATIONS!!! You made it happen!!! :D :D :D

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ARUNNINGKAT 9/29/2014 2:22PM

    I am so excited for you! Those are beautiful pieces! I will definitely find you on social media and follow your stuff.

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IAMZBEE 9/29/2014 2:03PM

    WOW! Your jewelry is so beautiful. I am so happy you followed your heart and opened up a store.

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SDLEE514 9/29/2014 1:57PM

    Thank you all!! Already got my first sell--I am BEYOND excited!!

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BRAINYBLONDE5 9/29/2014 9:28AM

  eeeek so exciting! I am going to go favorite your shop right now!

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IRP1114 9/29/2014 9:00AM

    emoticon emoticon
How exiting! emoticon

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CLRWILLIAMS25 9/29/2014 8:54AM

    This is so exciting! You really are so talented!

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BONOLICIOUS2 9/29/2014 8:50AM

    You are SO TALENTED! Seriously! I'm really glad you opened up an etsy shop because your stuff is amazing and should be shared!

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Friday, September 26, 2014

I got a new job offer!!!! I'm still processing. I can't believe my life (because let's face it, work is a big part of your life) will be changing so quickly. For those of you who read my blogs regularly I've been complaining about my work for a while. I like my work itself but my management has been HORRIBLE. Back several months ago after I was told I wouldn't get my next promotion (without even a review of my performance) I was so frustrated that I sent my resume off to a couple jobs and kind of forgot about it. Well, literally this is what went down, 2 days ago I got an email to set up a phone interview for the following day, so YESTERDAY. Pretty sure I didn't even get an email that my application had moved forward or that I was referred. I wasn't even sure I should go through with the interview, but I thought might as well see if I'm qualified and see what its about. Well, I was pretty much offered the job on the spot and got a tentative offer letter by the end of that same day--so YESTERDAY. I now have until MONDAY (4 days including the weekend) to accept and fill out all the forms or I may not be considered. Like I said, whirlwind. Still processing.

Everything she said in the "interview" (I say that loosely because she barely asked me about my qualifications she already thought I was an excellent candidate and basically talked about the team and the work I would be doing) was exactly what I don't have in my current position that I'm most frustrated about. Supervisors who can't manage. No teamwork. Competitive environment. Unfair/unethical treatment. Now I can't guarantee this new position won't have issues, but at least it sounds like a team environment, the woman sounded like she actually knows how to manage, and I would be working directly with others in my field and getting more experience in a variety of work that I would not get in my current position. So yeah, my promotion would have been a big pay raise, and there is still a little part of me that is questioning whether I should have waited it out (would I actually be denied my promotion like I was told?). I'm transferring federal agencies so I retain my current pay (if not a slight promotion) and all my leave, benefits, everything. But money isn't everything and I think this is a better opportunity for my career in the long run so yeah, pretty excited! and relieved not to have to deal with my current managers for much longer! so yeah. big changes coming.

In other news...I haven't been as good with food and working out as I'd like. I'm avoiding the scale but I had a doctor's appt recently where I couldn't avoid it and according to that scale I lost 2 lbs. That was a surprise. My doctor also told me I have mild anemia and put me on iron supplements, which if any of you are on iron or have experienced it, it kind of messes with your stomach so I've been having some issues in that arena, not pleasant. Any suggestions on counteracting that? guess I need to research.

Finally in the news department, and please excuse me while I self-promote, I am SUPER close to opening my Etsy jewelry shop. I have been spending a lot of time ordering supplies (so I can look professional and ship them out once I open) taking pictures of my pieces, and listing them on my shop--I just have a couple more pieces to add and I can officially open! I will have a facebook page and instagram account associated with just my "business." Coming soon! whoohoo!! my family and friends have been pestering me to pursue this for a while and I'm very exciting I'm finally realizing one of my dreams.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

IRP1114 9/26/2014 6:14PM

    emoticon emoticon
Time for a happy dance and cartwheels! emoticon emoticon

Omg girl seriously could not be happier for you! This is exactly the change/opportunity your life needed. I know no matter what your final decision is you will be in a better place after.

And congrats on taking the leap with your business! It sounds so cool. I am sure you are going to enjoy the success with this adventure : )

Wooohoooo to the dr scale saying you lost weight!!! That is awesome considering you didn't expect it at all. Plus dr scales almost always say higher numbers lol!

Really happy for you girl. This new chapter in life will be one of many awesome ones to come. emoticon

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CHODGES83 9/26/2014 3:49PM

    CONGRATULATIONS! Sounds like a wonderful opportunity!

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IAMZBEE 9/26/2014 2:40PM


Seriously... CONGRATS!!! What an amazing opportunity. It's not always about the pay... it's the passion and the opportunities that pave the way.

Congrats on the loss. That's AMAZING! I hope you share your etsy store info here (or just message me). I'm happy that you are getting that off the ground as well. YAYAYAYAYAYAYAYAYAYAYAY!!!

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BRAINYBLONDE5 9/26/2014 1:47PM

  BEYOND excited for you and all these new changes happening! let me know the name of your etsy store when you open so I can support you!!!

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BONOLICIOUS2 9/26/2014 12:55PM

    OMG GIRL - WOW!!!!!! This is awesome news!!!!!!! Yesssssssssss!!!!!!!!! See, I'm a big believer in things happening for a reason. You attracted the change you needed. I am so happy for you!

And I was hoping you'd open an etsy shop so I could get some of your gorgeous work! You're very talented!

Anyways WOO HOOOOOO to you! I bet your current sup will be a bit witchy about you leaving but stick it to the man and celebrate yourself and your accomplishments! YAYYYY!!!!!!!!

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ARUNNINGKAT 9/26/2014 12:10PM

    Super excited for you on all the awesome things that are happening right now!

I think you are probably going to enjoy getting out of your high stress work environment. There is nothing worse than dreading going to work, for whatever reason it might be.

Have fun getting all your paperwork filled out this weekend! emoticon

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SONICB 9/26/2014 12:09PM

    YES YES YES YES YESSSSSSSSSSSSSSSS, CONGRATULATIONS!!! I am so happy for you!!! And so glad that your benefits and all transferred over. I hope the new job turns out to be a much better fit for you!

Iron supplements have always upset my stomach too... The reaction wasn't as bad when I took them with a meal. You could consider cooking more in cast-iron pans to increase your iron intake instead of taking the supplements. I personally just pay more attention to the iron content of foods I eat.

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CARADAWN 9/26/2014 11:33AM

    Congrats - what great NEWS!! Is there any salary negotiation going on? If not, you should start it! Women do not ask for raises/ higher salaires enough and we get paid less for it. The worst they can say is sorry there is no room for negotiation but they will not revoke the offer because you asked, they may even respect you more because you asked and believe that you are worth more money. I HATE negotiating but did it before I accepted my last job and am so happy I did. I moved because I was bored at my old company and this company was offering a way better opportunity but the higher negotiated salary was icing on the cake :)

Congrats again and I hope this makes your life a lot easier and happier,

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BEFIT_WITHGUSTO 9/26/2014 11:19AM

    How exciting!!! Super happy for you!

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AUNTRENEE 9/26/2014 10:45AM

    Hope that you get this job if makes you happy.

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September check in (rant alert!)

Monday, September 15, 2014

This blog is going to get quite ranty so if you're not into that, consider yourself warned.

I haven't been keeping up with my September plan. I've missed several planned workouts and/or they changed to walking rather than a specific hard-core cardio session as planned. Walking is not exactly the same as a full-blown heart pumping cardio session, so yeah, haven't been up to par in that department. I've been better about planning my breakfasts/lunches for the week but still have had several slip ups and forget the weekend. Last weekend was my bf's birthday and that was a full night of badness (food and alcohol) the day after he wanted to go to our favorite sushi place and since we didnt really go out to eat for his birthday, we did that as well. It is nearly impossible not to overindulge at this place, for us anyway. Then during the week I had one day in particular that I was incredibly tired so I had too much coffee (which I can't drink without sugar so...yeah) and I was so worked up from stress at work that I had a (couple) glasses of wine after work. I never do that. ugh. then this past weekend we ate dinner out and ordered delivery the next day. Not healthy in the slightest. Really not doing a good job of that no-binging on weekend thing.

I don't know why it's so hard for me. Just be healthy! Just choose the carrots over ordering wings! just make yourself work out when you're stressed, its better for you than wine for sure! I'm always feeling like I'm taking 2 steps forward and 5 steps back. But its my own doing and fault.

Work has been awful. I think I mentioned a while back that my supervisor told me I probably wouldn't get my promotion, which I'm due for in january (but the fiscal year/performance reviews happen end of september) so I've been working incredibly hard to prove I deserve it. Still my coworker, who technically is more senior than me, is always getting work referred to her and is clearly favored--so how am I supposed to prove myself if I'm not given the same opportunities? I've been trying to create my own work and prove I'm just as valuable.

THEN, I requested my holiday leave on august 5th. I'm only asking for the 2 days before both thanksgiving and christmas because I fly home. My supervisor literally refused to approve them. They have been sitting in our leave system and I brought it to her attention and she's not approving them. She has told me repeatedly that when I request it in the system has no bearing on whether its granted or not (poll, if leave is NOT granted on a first come first serve basis, what IS a fair way to approve or disprove it?). my supervisor told me she needed to wait until she knew what my coworker (the more senior one) was doing for leave. Why her plans were contingent on mine made my head spin. Why do i have to wait for her? What if she wants the same days? How are you going to decide who get its? Are you going do deny my leave b/c she wants it too? How is that fair?? My supervisor told me that her boss, my second level supervisor, wanted one of us (me or my coworker) to be in the office. Now let me preface this with the fact that i was clear I was willing to work half days or be flexible, I just needed to know if I was needed in the office--it wasn't about having to work or not I just NEEDED TO KNOW if my supervisor WOULD approve my leave or not so I could book my flights around times I was needed or not. I thought that was common courtesy. But no. Anyways, I approached my second level supervisor saying I was concerned about my supervisor not approving my leave, flights are getting expensive, and I don't know why she has to wait to hear from my coworker (who was on leave by the way) to approve my leave. She didn't understand why my supervisor had to wait either or what my coworker's plans had to do with it. I didn't WANT to undermine my supervisor by going to my second level supervisor but she was lying to me. My second level supervisor never said one of us needed to be in the office, only that the team needed coverage, and there are others on my team besides myself and my coworker (not to mention, as a supervisor, shouldn't you be willing to make sacrifices and work? that's part of the responsibility of the title). My supervisor is asking for a full 2 weeks off, christmas week through new years week and she cannot approve my one day. Having both me and my coworker be off might jeopardize her ability to take her leave so she needed to make sure or demand one of us work so she could take her leave. So not only is she being immature she also lied to me. I ended up confronting her, I told her that I had talked to my second level supervisor and she never said one of us needed to be in the office, so I didn't understand why my supervisor was telling me that; she was pretty much caught red-handed. she said when did you talk to (my second level supervisor?) I said recently shes like oh, um i guess I'll go confirm with her, so she ended up having to approve my thanksgiving leave, although she's still refusing to approve my christmas leave. To make matters worse, she does this to me every year! And someone always ends up being able to cover the office. But by the time she approves my leave, which is the case now, flights are ridiculously expensive, so now, I may not even go home for thanksgiving until wed night or first thing that morning when flights are cheaper and I may end up working that day anyway. Phew. It has been unbelievably aggravating feeling like she was prioritizing my coworkers needs over mine, lying to me, and having no qualm about taking 2 weeks off herself. OH and the second level supervisor sent out an email saying if you've taken the weeks off for both holidays in the past, be sure to allow your staff to take it off, and asking that they only take off one holiday, not both. So my supervisor comes over crying to me about how UNFAIR that is, and can you believe it?! LADY, you won't even approve my one day and you think not being able to take both weeks off is unfair?

Moral is, even though she verbally approved my thanksgiving leave its not approved in the system and my flights are still not booked. ugh. She claims she's retiring in june and if I can just make it until then I might be okay. If I am denied my promotion come january I will need to consider my options. But that promotion would be a big one :( Sometimes I fantasize about quitting my job and doing the things I love...finally opening my etsy jewelry shop and running a franchise of my favorite barre studio. I even went so far as to request more information about starting a franchise. Imagine the freedom of being your own boss for two businesses! Being creative and staying fit would be part of the job!

So beyond that...some of you may or may not know that I have a history of anxiety; I've gone to therapy for it and it went so far as anti-anxiety/depression medication was prescribed for me but I just didn't have the guts to go through with it. I know you can't live your life in fear but with everything going on in today's world has just been really stressful for me. I live in dc metro and literally work across from the White House. With ISIS and terrorism on high, that's not exactly a comfort. There was an African leadership summit at the white house at the beginning peak of the ebola outbreak--which by the way is no where near under control. Living in such an international area it's really a plane flight away. I really need to just take a break from the news for my mental health sake, but its hard because I do like to be informed.

And then there's my food and weight struggles. I've stopped weighing myself because nothings changed, and if i do lose I succumb to the mindset, I don't really need to lose, so I give in. But at the end of the day, I don't really like how I look and I can't fit into some of my pants so that's what needs to be my motivating factor. I worry about all the events (being in my best friends wedding, etc) I have coming up and my worst fear (I guess I let what others think weigh too heavily) is that people who I haven't seen in a while think I've let myself go. I love my best friend but she does come from a judgmental family (shes the one who was in a pageant, looked anorexic, and her mom was like wow doesnt she look amazing?!) her cousin, the other maid of honor, put on a couple pounds recently (literally a couple) and her mom described her as "so heavy you wouldn't recognize her anymore" and these are the people I have to be presentable for to be in the wedding. not to mention the cousin, the other maid of honor, is already being immature about planning. its like just because she's not the only maid of honor she's refusing to cooperate with me. Case in point, the bride recently emailed us options for save the dates, the cousin responded to her immediately. I emailed the cousin saying hey I think it would be useful to have a place we can bounce ideas and keep each other posted for planning. I knew she's started thinking/planning for the shower so I asked her what shes done and what I can do. I have some ideas for the bachelorette so I shared those and asked for her thoughts. I have received no response from her. This unresponsiveness has happened a couple times already. I mean, she has to acknowledge I too am a maid of honor and that we need to work together to plan, which means communicating--right?

And then there's the ever present thought in the back of my mind that gets me down is why 7.5 years with my bf and he doesn't want/can't/won't commit to me. Holidays are always an issue because we don't spend them together and I'd like to and I've expressed this, and when we don't its kind of like well I guess there's no reason to, we're not engaged or anything but that just drives the point home. So yeah, we'll see what happens this year.

Sorry for the novel rant. I warned you, if you made it this far, thanks for reading and for your support! Here's to turning around the rest of September!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

CARADAWN 9/16/2014 12:10PM

    Too much stress in your life, no question. #1 the job - I know you are trying to hold out to see if you get a promotion or if your boss retires next summer but I would suggest looking for a new job NOW. The best time to look for a job is when you have one and are not desperate to make a move. You should look for a job that has better opportunities than you currently have and is already at the promtion level you are hoping to get - win / win! If there is nothing out there and time passes then hopefully the promotion and boss leaving will happen. I always say don't just complain about something - do something! I believe you will feel a lot better if you are actively looking for a job and not just sitting around waiting for others to make things happen for you.

As far as having your own Etsy shop what is stopping you from starting now? Why don't you put a few things out there and if your business grows then make the decision weather to do it full time or not. The best job is the one that doesn't feel like work.

On the wedding stuff- ugh. What HORRIBLE people. They judge others because they are lacking in their life. IGNORE them. You don't need their approval and once they realize you don't care it will take the fun out of it for them.

Boyfriend - talk with him. I am sure you have before but if it really bothers you still then make a decision. Make a list of what you are willing to put up with / not and stick with it. If the holidays are make or break it then let him know. If you want different things in life (marriage, children) then you will not be happy together. If you can come to an agreement on the future then it is worth sticking around.

Remember - YOU are the only person that can make yourself HAPPY

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CLRWILLIAMS25 9/15/2014 2:23PM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon (I think you deserve all of these right now)

You are under some serious stress girl! I hope you feel at least a little bit better after getting it all out on paper. I can totally see why you're turning to comfort things like wine and food instead of exercise (which we know is good for you, blah, blah blah, but doesn't have that instant need-to-feel-better-now tag on it that all the bad stuff does).
Your boss sounds like a total pain to deal with and I think it's good that you stuck up for yourself and went to the next supervisor. Just because you were there second, doesn't make you any less important to the organization. Hoping you can get something finalized soon so you can make travel plans.

I hope that you can your bf can come to some sort of understanding soon. Maybe try to get some holiday schedule locked down (maybe make the first concession of being with his family for their regularly scheduled event and asking to change event time/day with your family) to show you are trying to be accommodating so you can spend the day with each other.

Even if you're "just walking," it's still better than just sitting. It may not be a giant sweat session, but a few minutes outside will definitely help lower anxiety and stress. (sometimes, I just count steps or trees or sidewalk cracks on a short walk so my mind isn't free to wander and get worked up). Come back and rant away. We're here to listen emoticon

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BONOLICIOUS2 9/15/2014 12:53PM

    Oooooooo girl. Sorry, this is going to be a LONG comment!

1) Your job satisfaction affects ALL aspects of your life. If you're unhappy at work, the wine and wings are going to happen. I know because I'm there with you... by the time you're at home, you're done. You have this "F everything" attitude because you've been dragged down and around all day. You can't give yourself respect when nobody else is respecting you, not sure why it goes like that, but it does. It really doesn't sound like a good situation. I hate suggesting going to HR but maybe you could "check in on the time off process" and maybe hope they get the hint that your boss is totally being a B about it? I've been having a lot of those "quitting to do what I love" dreams as well, but someone recently pointed out to me that EVERY job has ups and downs and don't follow your passion as a means of escaping something, or you may be really disappointed. Food for thought!

2) Anxiety - I'm with you there too! It seems to be getting worse for me as well. You're much more exposed! Work stress will definitely make this worse. I think I am going to try a little meditation challenge of sorts because I don't want to rely on meds. Maybe we could do that challenge together?!

3) Oh you KNOW I know about this marriage thing! Have you guys talked about it recently? Seriously - you're not going to feel better until you have the hard talk. Men need to be told what to do usually lol. Not necessarily a reflection on your awesomeness!

4) This judgmental witch you are dealing with for this wedding... you do not owe ANYONE ANYTHING for your appearance at this wedding. You're gorgeous, I've seen pictures, and all her behavior says is that she's an unhappy person. If she dares to make a comment to you, I'd tell her that - gee you must be so unhappy! Maybe gently tell the bride about the lack of communication in the bridal party as well? Or maybe pull this person aside and say "hey, whats the best way for us to communicate so we can plan this together?" Because you KNOW at the end of it all she'll pull the "I did it all" card. Grrrr. PEOPLE.

Overall... your blog really hit home for me. I probably could have written it myself. I've been coming home from work and drinking, or eating bad things, or both in the same night. I have distinctly ignored working out. I know what I need to do but my brain just can't seem to make me do it. I wish I had better advice for how to get out of this funk but I haven't found my own way out yet. That seems to be what it is - a funk, you know? I don't think its a matter of forcing ourselves to work out or forcing ourselves to eat better. I think we need to find a way to fix our brains first. What do you think?

Hugs though to you... this ish SUCKS. I am so sorry!

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ABAKER34 9/15/2014 12:10PM

    I don't know what to tell you about the job situation, other than that is definitely a crappy way to run a department and if your supervisor's goal is to run off her employees than that is the way to do it.

I completely know what you mean about stressing out over working in DC. I work as a gov't contractor down the street from the Navy Yard in SE DC and last year we had employees in building 197. Our building was under lockdown until they found the shooter. All I can say to try to ease some of your anxiety is that there are crazy people all over this country and that if you spend all of your time worrying that they will pop up where you work/live, then you can ruin the best years of your life worrying.

With the boyfriend thing, I dated my boyfriend for 11 years before we were married (we started dating at 16). I would be PISSED at the holiday thing if you guys have been together that long and are not celebrating together, because even years before we were married, we were totally committed, we co-owned a house together, had a dog, etc. We shared family holidays, we would go see his family, then go see mine. I thought of his parents like a mother and father because I'd known them for so long, and they already thought of me like a daughter. I would definitely talk to him about that.

I'm glad you were able to rant, have a good week and keep up all of your hard work that you are doing!

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ARUNNINGKAT 9/15/2014 12:05PM

    Wowza, girl! You have a lot to stress you out right now! Hope that typing your blog helped you start to feel a little better! I know that sometimes just talking about it helps a little.

Give yourself a break when you mess up on your goals (a little wine helps sometimes!) and work to get a few workouts in. I am right there with you on this! I have got to get my determination back! And too much coffee? Oh yeah, right there with you on this one too. My latest vice is Iced Pumpkin Spice Lattes. I know that for me they are a comfort food..... but I should save them for end of the week or something.

Hang in there! There has got to be a turnaround for you very soon! We are here for you!

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IRP1114 9/15/2014 11:43AM

    So glad you made time to get stuff off your mind! It really is a lot to deal with and constantly think about.
Sigh. I wish you good luck and hope you can did deep for the pacience required to deal with work!
You are doing what you can in this journey girl! Keep focused on how you feel and less on others options. You enjoy eating those healthy meals you prepare for yourself. That alone is a big plus in your goals for getting leaner! And you also enjoy a good sweetly workout when you do make the time to get them in too! So don't beat yourself up for what you haven't done. Just keep moving forward with all of your healthy habits and make yourself happy with you ; ) I know you will get to that happy place with your body soon. Give yourself a chance and take it easy on yourself mentally. I think the break from the news is a good idea. Maybe at least wait until later in the day to read some and maybe follow it with something that will lift your spirits back up?
I am with you on making the best of September : )! Let's do this!

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JENSTRESS 9/15/2014 11:19AM

    Oh. My. Word. Holy stress levels batman!!!

I really feel for you. That is so incredible. I can't even imagine.

I don't know what to do about your job. I would definitely start putting feelers out for a new job. But that is me, and I don't know the entire situation with your promotion, and what it could entail. It just seems like that is just not worth it, unless you'd get out from under your unbelievably terrible supervisor.

The wedding situation, sounds like the movie Bridesmaids, like this cousin is just trying to take over. I almost would consider cc-ing the bride on something, like, "hey, just wanting to check in, I sent you some emails and wanted to check to see if you had received them, because I hadn't heard from you..."

The boyfriend, that just makes me angry for you. 7.5 years together, engaged or no, makes no sense to me that you wouldn't be sharing holiday time. I mean, in some states you would already have a common law marriage!!! I'm not saying that he will or won't commit. I don't know what the problem is, and I don't know how he is with you the rest of the time, but something seems off there.

I hope you have luck turning everything around, and with your promotion and everything else.

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Vacation road trip & September plans

Tuesday, September 02, 2014

So, I didn't get to where I wanted to be as far as weight loss/fitness goals before my vacation. Oh well, I'm over it. Vacation was wonderful, spending time with friends and family and people I don't live near was really great. Plus we had beautiful weather and it was super fun playing tourists, even if it was in our own home states (Mass for me, VT for my bf, plus NH to visit a couple friends of ours).

In all, we visited four wineries, two distilleries, a cidery, a cheese factory, an ice cream factory (Ben & Jerry's!!), and a chocolate yeah not kidding lol. Apparently being "touristy" equals being a local foodie (what is the equivalent of that for beverages??) My favorite things I ate were some Grafton garlic cheddar cheese and cider fudge (we were in Vermont after all!) Plus going out to dinner pretty much every night. We did quite a bit of walking, hiking, and some kayaking. Overall I gained a couple pounds and was in a desperate need of a cleanse upon returning home--just in time for September!

Visiting my friends was great--except when she asked my bf when he was making an honest woman out of me! I wanted to crawl under the dinner table and die. Then, my friend who I'll be a maid of honor for, dragged me to look at wedding bands (we were all out together being touristy, including my bf! why she needed to do that is beyond me...) her fiance yelled at her, why would you do that, that's putting so much pressure on [my bf]!! Umm yeah awkward. Other than that it was great seeing them lol! I know some of you reading this will relate though ;)

Anyways, between hiking and all the factory tours and watching glass blowing, I took way too many pictures to post.
But here is my favorite one I took of a paddle boarder on Lake Champlain:

We drove up Mt. Mansfield (the tallest in Vermont) and took a small hike to a summit but we were literally in the clouds and it was freezing so there wasn't much of a view and we didnt last long:

Here are a couple of me from hiking:

I'm still not thrilled with how I look. I just think my arms and face look chubby. I'm still sitting at 109lbs (up 6lbs from my low), been here for over a year now.

And, we got a lot of puppy time over our vacation, I love dogs (all animals really) so that was really exciting; this is my fav shot of my bf's parents' golden:

But, my cat, who my parents watched for the week, seemed to really miss us and she was all cuddly and snuggly with us, far more than usual, when we returned:

So for September. I've already developed a fitness plan for the whole month. I'll be focusing on my barre (I have an online subscription, and it does wonders for my hip posture, so I'm trying to keep that up) but trying to up my cardio so I'm shooting for three days a week of each with some flexibility on the weekends for hiking or rest days. As for food, I am FED UP with what I should eat or focus on. Whole30. Strict paleo. modified paleo. low carb. carb cycling. Literally my only focus right now is to stay within my calories most days (shooting for weekdays, and not totally bingeing on weekends) eating low-ish carbs, and whole good foods. If I don't have time to prepare dinner and need to throw in a trader joe's frozen healthy-ish meal (I recommend the mojito salmon!), so be it.

My bf's birthday is Friday and we are going out. I'm planning on this being a cheat meal/night. As long as I can get back on track I'll be okay. Fall is around the corner (even though today was 95+ degrees in the DC area) and its a wonderful season and great for hiking, but I need to get my weight and eating under control before the holidays roll around! ahh!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

KCLARK89 9/8/2014 8:05PM

    Yay glad you had a good time!! You look fantastic :)

I hear you 100% on the meal plan deal. It's so frustrating trying to fit into a "plan" rather than just make healthy choices and take bits and pieces/recipes that you love from each place and make them your OWN plan!

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CHODGES83 9/3/2014 11:51AM

    I think your food plan is great. Just make healthy -ish decisions and eat what makes you feel good. A treat now and then isn't the end. Plus calculating calories is way less time consuming, at least I think so. Less stress makes a happier food relationship!

Pictures are wonderful! Sounds like a great vacation.

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BEFIT_WITHGUSTO 9/3/2014 11:01AM

    You always go on such fun trips! Before I read your comments about how you look, I was thinking to myself, she looks great! So fit and tiny! I think your arms look absolutely fantastic!!

Have a great September!

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CLRWILLIAMS25 9/3/2014 9:30AM

    So glad you had a great vacation! Love the photos you took and all of the touristy things you visited (my kind of vacation lol). Your September plan sounds great. And you do have a few months 'before the holidays'- you can definitely make a change by then :)

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KABMPH 9/3/2014 8:49AM

    What a fantastic vacation! And you always take such good photos. I've wanted to try stand-up paddleboarding since I first heard about it but haven't gotten up the courage to try. Maybe next summer.

I went on a road trip this summer, too, and ate BBQ all along the way. It was divine!

"Before the holidays" means you have just under 4 months. You can do it!

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EMMY_DUCKIE149 9/3/2014 8:48AM

    Pics look great! Awesome paddleboard/sun shot! Yay, animals!

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LLBLOVER 9/2/2014 10:35PM

    Glad you had such a great time! I, too, am going home for a visit in two weeks, and I am SOOO excited, but I know that food is going to be a MAJOR issue! Great photos, cute furballs, and you look fantastic, by the way!!!

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