Sunday, February 10, 2019

January Challenge: Planking -

The short version is this: I planked every day for the month of January and the only thing that happened is that I hate planking now. 

The longer version is this: 

I bought the Commit30 planner this year and each month there is a place to create your own challenge. It's the simplest thing, and I could have totally just put a check mark by each date on another calendar, but this is special! It has circles for each day, and reflection, and a place for a prize! 

My goal was to get up to 2:00 minutes, and to do it early in the day to get it over with. I started at about 45 seconds and it seemed easy enough. It was miserable, but doable. I set the timer on my phone and you'd think I'd want a distraction, but I just bore my eyes in to the timer screen and watched the seconds tick up and assumed that each second represented me becoming a fucking bad-ass planker. 

Pffft. As if three minutes is real. 
Why planking you ask? In the middle of the story. I don't know. I read it was good for you and seemed liked an easy January challenge. No supplies or much time needed. 

Literally right in the middle of the month I hit my highest time without really trying at 1:32. I assumed I would continue to add a few seconds each day and do a final push at the end of the month to 2:00. 

But on the 16th and 17th and 18th something was happening... I hated planking. Like for no good reason dreaded those few seconds of the day and didn't push myself because of it. Assuming I was going through something I just chilled in to some 30ish second planks. Is anyone still reading this. This is not very interesting. 

And the month progressed the same way. Hating. Miserable. I actually did feel stronger but I didn't give a rip because somehow the whole thing had gotten in my head. Then I got sick at the end and I still planked because I wanted to fill in ALLLLL my circles dammit. 

Incidentally January happened to be the longest month of my life. I couldn't wait for this self-inflicted torture to end. I still got it done each day - but just barely. One day I planked for like 16 seconds. But I filled in my circle, because technically I. Did. It.  

THEN on the very last day of the month I completely forgot to plank. Which seems peculiar to me - how do you forget that you hate something? Like hate is real. So on Feb 1 I decided to tackle a two minute plank. And you'll be surprised - assuming you are still awake - that I did it. TWO MINUTES. I tricked myself. I put on my head phones and put on Dennis Lloyd's Nevermind. I turned it up real loud and just tried hard to do it. I opened my eyes at 1:43 and I stared at the clock till 2:00  and cursed myself for this horrible challenge, almost threw up, and then I filled in my Jan 31 circle and closed the book on that stupid heinous idea. 

I chose not to take a pic of my Commit30 January Challenge pages because I wrote a bunch of other personal stuff on there. And this blog is personal enough without a photo of my words to myself. 

Here is what I learned. 

1) I should have one rest day each week if I choose a strength challenge. A monthly challenge should be comprehensive - it doesn't mean I have to do something every day for 30 days. It means just have a plan. 

2) I don't like planking. I thought it may be so easy and it could just be part of my daily routine. But we need a break. Forever.

I reflected these things in my planner. I didn't award myself a physical prize because I had never picked something early on and so I decided my reward was that February arrived. 

Stay tuned for February's challenge. It's equally boring. 

Friday, January 4, 2019

Tired Girl Christmas Decorating -

Christmas is not a hobby that I would choose.  Blah blah blah - I'm a Tired Girl. You get it. But because my husband loves Christmas very much and I love him very much, then here I am. 

Let's be clear, I am not passive aggressive to him, but rather openly aggressive about it, but through the years we have both compromised. He has taken his inner Clark Griswold and Tired Girl-ized himself. And I look weirdly pained and happy for about a month. We are both damaged through the process, but it works for us.

I am going to assume there are other people like me, who just need to get through, so I put together my top five Tired Girl tips specifically on decorating for Christmas  and one bonus tip on a straight-up coping mechanism that is not booze and pills.  Yes it's not enough to fake smile for a month, my house has to be transformed into a fucking glorious winter wonderland where all dreams are possible. Cool. *trembling hand reaches for gin and tonic. 

In truth, Joe does all the decorating - because he can not not do it. He can not be contained.  And I take it down, because I am wonderful. But I have bought the bulk of our decor through the years - it's a complicated tangle of love. So for all you Tired Girls out there - here are the best ways to decorate the shit out of your house in the most efficient way possible. 

1) Don't buy breakable stuff -  
When I was younger I would skip through the after Christmas sales piling mercury glass everything into my cart without even a glimmer of strategy of storage or moving or life. I still love my mercury glass that, darn it all, keeps not breaking. But I don't buy anything breakable anymore. When my bestie and I swam with manatees to celebrate our 40th (we know how to live) I skipped over the pretty glass manatee ornament keepsake and grabbed the little felt number that looked like I had hand sewn in it in some kind of forced craft situation. Charming. But not breakable. Toss it on in the ornament bucket bitches and never look back. Sadly it took me years to figure this out. So. Many. Breakables. But since there is no end to Christmases I will still have plenty of years to practice. Yaaayyyyy. 

2) Pick a color -  
Mine is red. When I get the whim to splurge on Christmas decor my eclectic style comes together better when I'm not all over the place with stuff. I streamline in a lot of ways and color is one. I don't need to name colors that would be pretty for decor - you get it - but it's fun to have a bit of cohesiveness. In my case my tree skirt is red and all of our stocking - though v different are all red, tablecloth, my few holiday throw pillows, garland, etc. Red. 

3) Pick a decor thing
One of my fave - non breakable -
modern trees. 
Mine are trees. I love Christmas trees in every shape and pattern. I love the lines of trees. Could be nutcrackers, angels, Santas, elves, snowmen, cottages, poinsettias. I usually treat myself to a new (non-breakable) tree almost each year.  I bought a tree that somehow looked like my old dog Ralphie and I call it my Ralphie tree - its all burlappy and someday I'll glue mini pinecones to it because he loved pinecones...  But I have modern trees, antique trees, trees covered in moss, sequins, a tree made out of candy cane stripes and of course those blasted mercury glass trees that I stinking love.  
The fun thing about this is you can clump them all over the house however you want and it seems to make sense. 12 snowmen on the counter? Sure. But 12 tchotchkes on the counter? Chaos. This lady's thing is round ornaments by the hundreds in jewel colors.

4) Wreaths! 
No matter your color or your theme, wreathes are where its at for Tired Girls. They are typically mostly non-breakable and you can just hang them all over wherever and instant holidays and cohesion. If you pick some (or jooj up plain ones with ribbon and stuff) in your color or theme - you are like so set. Done. Clap dust off hands. 
MY wreath. I love it more than other things. 
Wreaths are especially super for outdoor decor. A pretty wreath on the door and maybe even matching ones somewhere else, like the windows? Holy shit it's good stuff. 
This year right after Christmas I stocked up on some super pretty wreaths that were a million percent off from Michael's and I actually can't wait to put them up next year. But I'll still enjoy the eleven months of freedom that I have until then. 
And one year I bought an overly expensive wreath that I love more than I should. Joe calls it "your wreath" when he goes to hang it up. Next year maybe I'll start a social media campaign with the hashtag #wreathsbitches and we can all show our wreaths. Probably not though. 

5) Be cool
Be so fucking cool (says me who melts down about three times a week during the holiday season). If you don't love Christmas or if you do but you tired, then just be cool about decor. Where things go and how - just go with it. Trust me. Let your kids or husband or your mom or whoever put stuff out, or everyone does it together and its fun and you listen to Christmas music, or you do it at 5 am yourself one Tuesday in December just to get it done  - just whatever. 

One elf working and one dog elf resting. 
My tip for a coping mechanism to get through the holidays, if they aren't your thing: Treat yourself to something that is special to that time of year. Something  you will look forward to each year in the midst of the trauma of the season. 
My three things are: Pulling out my wreath that I love, watching Hallmark Christmas movies that I LOOOOOVE, and eggnog,. 
There are other things I like about the season - and I try to focus on those as well - like the fact that my husband really does love it, getting cards from my friends all over, and New Years Day (my most fave holiday). 
You could have a tradition of some kind just for you. Treat yourself to something (probably not cocaine).   

I also have a Christmas duvet that I love to put on the bed. I have a friend in California who says her house was saved from the 2018 fires because she'd already put Christmas sheets on all the beds.
So Christmas sheets have power.

How do you decorate in a Tired Girl way? How do you treat yourself? 

Sunday, February 4, 2018

January 2018 Most Favorite Things -

Tired Girl's Most Favorite Things in January 2018

1. Halos/Cuties - I love these little oranges and strangely they are super multi-functional to me. Here are a few reasons why I am obsessed with a small piece of fruit. 
When my kitchen is neat they have a very like "this person has her whole life together look" while sitting in a bowl in my kitchen. Like maybe my whacky kitchen would be in a real magazine, and not a weird issue of Messy-Kitchen Anonymous or something. 

They also taste good and feel like a little treat since I'm trying to be healthy and keep my sugar habit in check.

After I peel and eat it, I wet the peel and rub it all over my hands and it makes my hands smell good and feel super clean. I don't have weirdly smelly hands or anything it just feels good. 
Then I break up the peel and put half of them in my disposal and it makes my whole kitchen smell good. I don't have a weirdly smelly kitchen or anything, but still. The leftover peel I put in a ziploc bag in the freezer and I drop into my disposal through out the week. 

Voila. If you are not in to eclectic then you would hate my home. So just pretend you like this please. 

2. A smoothie for breakfast. Last summer (and fall and winter) things were a little too busy for my taste - the world required more of me than I prefer and I went in to deep survival mode.  Just live dammit. I was too overwhelmed to throw things in a blender, smoosh it up and drink it. But I realized after a few months of not drinking this smoothie that I didn't feel as well all day, and that I was starting to gain weight (all the glorious 12 pounds I lost last year were in jeopardy). Even when I tried to be healthy and boil some eggs for breakfast or something I noticed I was hungry again quickly. When I drank my smoothie I could power through more hours of the day without engaging in one of my favorite past-times of planning my next meal. 
As you may or may not know I am not so great with measurements, so I'm sorry that this recipe is loose. 
Here is my smoothie recipe:
  • A couple of handfuls of raw spinach, or kale, or a mixture from Sam's called "Power Medley." 
  • SOME plain kefir - not sure how much. Just like some
  • A little of bit water. I need more liquid to smoosh up the greens and I am too cheap to put in too much kefir, and it's a calorie saver too. 
  • I blend the greens and liquid until there aren't many clumps.
  • Then I add in about 1/2 cup of frozen blueberries.
  • A scoop of Raw Fit Vanilla flavored protein powder.
  • A scoop of "Vibrance" in pineapple/citrus flavor. (This stuff is less expensive and just as good as the same brand called "Green Vibrance" according to my guy at my health food store. 
  • A scoop of this turmeric stuff. (Supposedly turmeric has to be consumerd with black pepper, cherry or coconut oil to get the full effects. Who has time for all these dang rules?)
  • And I sprinkle in some flax seed.
  • Sometimes I put in powdered collagen even though my guy at the health food store told me it was pointless. I already have it and maybe my body works differently, scientifically, then the rest of the world and it will work. 
  • Sometimes I put in half of a frozen banana because it makes it taste really good and smooth, but I try to not to eat too much sugar so I only do this sometimes
  • I blend all of that. 
  • It is an unpleasant brown color because of the blueberries and greens.
  • This makes a big cup and I drink it all.
At one point I figured out what the caloric intake was all of this, but I can't find my calculations and apparently the final number didn't mean much to me. But it isn't bad. 

This process is actually easy for me because I have been doing it a long time and I've internalized it. I don't need variety. I just like this. When life allows I like to make several days at a time and store in glass jars. It doesn't taste as good as the first day, but it tastes like "already made" which is a flavor I really like.  

The protein powder may taste a little chalky but I'm used to it. It tastes healthy to me. Lifeway kefir is cheaper than some of the other brands that taste better but I don't care. I choose quantity over quality in this case. 

3. Eating the frog - I am an intense animal lover, so I don't appreciate this idiom. But I love the idea. It's a quote from Mark Twain and the point is if you have something you are dreading (like eating a frog I guess - bleh), then do it first thing in the morning and get it over worth. It's a testament to not procrastinating about the hardest thing on your calendar. Get it done early and fast. Here's an article that I enjoyed and agree with: Eat That Frog.  I have developed a healthy addiction to getting the hardest things on my to-do list done first thing when possible.  Watch out world. 
I channel my inner inspirational speaker when I do the worst thing on my to-do list first thing in the morning. 

4. Wal-Mart Cotton Sleep Pants - 
 They are inexpensive, come in cute patterns with trim, and wear well. I have a bought a few each season and they are some of my favorite sleep pants. 
Here they are online, but they seem to have limited patterns and availability so your store would be your best bet. If you are not in to shopping at Wal-Mart, here are my thoughts in case you care (or are stuck someplace and need something to do). 

Monday, January 1, 2018

December Most Favorites -

Tired Girl's Most Favorite Things in December
These may be just the things that make your life amazing in the new year. Or not.  

1. My Stihl Leaf Blower - Don't effing start with me about sweeping leaves.  If you do, I will give you an account of the gallons of places I still have to sweep, and why I need this leaf blower to make the front of my house look like humans, and not animals, live here. I am TERRIBLE at using it however - like one wrong move and leaves are everywhere and I give up and go inside. But when I'm focused I blow the leaves that accumulate at the front of my house in the right way to make my place look neat. Truth is I have mastered blowing leaves under my car and calling it a day.  I like this model, because it's teeny and light weight, but has enough power to do what I want - blow leaves away from my house to another part of my house. 
There she is. 
People online are insanely mad about how crappy they think this thing is - maybe they didn't read that is is lightweight with light power for small properties. It's like a dustbuster. But for what it's worth - I love it. Here is one that is similar on Amazon.  
Honestly the before and after photos I took to show my hubs originally, isn't that dramatic. But I recently blew leaves away, so I can't recreate a better before and after.
Just pretend this is great.

Warm Beige

2. NYX Stay Matte But Not Flat Powder - I live in Florida and I have oily skin, so I often look "dewy," but not the good kind. When I went on TV a few years back to cook my turkey meatballs, I researched TV makeup and came up with this. I was crazed to be armed with anything that would help me not look shiny on TV, so I wasn't picky about the color. I had one choice at my local CVS I think - Warm Beige - and it works for me and my medium toned skin (I am not fair or tan, I am not sure if I have pink or yellow undertones). Ulta often has NYX brand on sale for buy one get one free or half off or something. So I hoard it. 
Me getting miked up on TV and not looking shiny. Video here.
3. Any nude colored nail polish - This fall (and the last ten years of my life) kicked my butt. I needed to look put together with the smidgest of efforts and nude polish does that for me - it's very forgiving. Who has time for their toes? Lots of people, but weirdly not me. These colors make me look finished, but don't draw attention to the hooves I call my feet. 
Two faves are - "Barefoot and Topless," "Master Plan." But "Ballet Slippers" and "Sand Tropez" look good too. For someone whose nails often look pretty rough, I talk about polish a lot. #trynabebetter 
You know the drill - these are not my hands. #notahandmodel
4. Low expectations - I have created a life where friends and family expect me to be loving, but don't expect too much more from me. The smallest accomplishment or activity and I get accolades. I may host Thanksgiving, but it's a group effort to set the table and my guests commended me for such a pretty table setting, because they must have just been excited that I had a tablecloth on hand. Even my neighbors yell "Hey the Tired Girl is weeding," when they drive by.  So yeah, this is working for me. 

Husband cooking, and dad and friend
setting the table for Thanksgiving dinner.
5. Coarse, high-quality, salt bought in a grinder -  How old lady is this one? But really, there is no need to laboriously pour coarse salt into our own salt grinders. Unless your salt and pepper set is really cute and you just love it. But otherwise it's cheap and easy to just buy good salt already in a grinder. My two pictured here happen to be pink Himalayan something or other, but lots of good kinds at the grocery store and at Marshall's. I bought the little one at Publix (and swear it wasn't much - like $2) and took the label off so it would look cute sitting on my counter. The bigger one was purchased at Marshall's and will be de-labeled when I am finally out of the little one. The price tag shows it is two dollars cheaper at Marshall's than Amazon here
My photos in this post are off the chart boring.

I know you know what  an
Apple watch looks like,
but here's a pic of mine anyway.

6. My Apple Watch-
 It may be a $300 timer, but I love my $300 timer. I've had it for a year and I wear it every day.  I like to see my action, it helps me navigate in my car, and I time eighty million different things in a day. Dry my jeans for 5 minutes, fill the pool up for 5 minutes, do jumping jacks for 5 minutes (HA! Just kidding - one minute), clean the house for one hour, stand and work for 30 minutes - you get the idea. My life is better with a timer strapped to my arm.  
I don't talk through my watch like a phone, and I haven't explored a lot of other apps, so I'm probs missing out. 

7. Dog Mom Rap - It's old, and dumb, but I love it. I have added the version here with lyrics, so if you don't want to listen, you can just read what a ballad from dog moms is all about it. Quote of the piece - "You're amazing." 

Anyone have anything appropriate they are obsessed with right now? 

Monday, July 17, 2017

Marriage advice -

I want to call this "the best" marriage advice.  But, I'll let you qualify it on your own. The words I am going to have to type in this post haunt me.  But the overriding value of them is enough to make me do it.

The context contributes to the power of this advice. My mom and I were having iced tea in the living room at a friend's house. We stopped by for reasons relating to my upcoming wedding (this was obvi years ago).  This friend told me she was going to give me the best unsolicited marriage advice.

And then she said this:

"Feed him and fuck him."

And if I didn't literally spit out iced tea then I emotionally flinched. 

The use of the word fuck in such a context aside, the truth is - it's good advice.  

Yes, I am an adult married woman and I both cook and have sex. And that feels icky to say, but the advice is on point. 

If you want to wax poetic about this advice we can - it boils down to both meeting another person's most basic needs and at the same time caring for them in a both physical and emotional way. Blah blah blah. 

I prefer not to personalize this too much - I am comfortable talking about my non-functioning uterus,  but my sex life feels too far.

If you have to let other things in your life and marriage slide - as we all do - it is understandable. So think hard before either of these two actions become obsolete. 

I want to hand this sentence to Tired Girls everywhere and you can do with it what you will.

Here is a hilarious scene from the movie Annie Hall - they are each asked by therapists if they have sex often - there answer is the same yet different. Ignore the first part about their relationship.

The text version: 
Each therapist asked "Are you having sex very often?"
Him: Hardly ever maybe three times a week.
Her: Constantly, I'd say three times a week.

Wednesday, May 31, 2017

May's Most Favorites

In January I was going to start writing a monthly favorite-things post. But in true Tired Girl style it took awhile longer, though I eventually got to it. So yay for following through - who cares about a timeline.

Tired Girl's Most Favorite Things in May 

1. These Target Mossimo Supply Co crewneck tees - if I am not wearing one then they are probably all in the wash and I don't have a shirt on. This is seriously close to all I wear -- and I have like six of the grey ones. Their grey. Not black, not white. Grey.
Here's 27 million photos of me in one of these t-shirts. I take selfies only occasionally to document something or other on my face or hair, and no one takes pics of me with my own phone, so I didn't have a lot of options. But I wear these shirts like everyday so I found a few.
Even though I am accosting Teddy in one of these photos, he is laying on me in another one - so it's proof he really does love me and I don't just annoy him. 

2. This inexpensive nail polish - Sinful Colors -  in Hazard. I can not definitively say it's the best quality - I can't say that it isn't - I just don't know. But I love this color. Sinful Colors in Hazard
These are not my hands. I am not a hand model. I rarely paint my nubby fingernails and my toes make an appearance here and there, but they weren't feeling it today. This color makes everything look fun and summery.  
Image result for sinful colors hazard


Though these aren't my fingers I would obviously cling to this bottle in the same way. Sinful Colors "Hazard 952." Incidentally this color looks amazeballs with the grey shirts I wear everyday

3. Teddy. Similar sweet nuggets are available at your local rescue/shelter. 
Side eye. 

4. My new Ikea Hemnes (in black/brown) dresser in my office.  This is not a photo of my dresser or office. I don't have cute pics of my new dresser to post yet, but this pic was my inspiration piece; it's from Land of Nod. So really this Land of Nod room is my fave thing right now. I am not even close to exaggerating when I say that I want almost every single dresser that Land of Nods has to offer for "kids" room. 


5. The Coldplay and Chainsmokers song - Something Just Like This

My alliance falls more on the side of Coldplay than The Chainsmokers. I wasn't forced to choose - no one demanded to know The Tired Girl's musical review. I just felt like pre-emptively distancing myself from The Chainsmokers. 

6. Pesto!!!  The recipe I came up with I named: "I know the general ingredients and I'm too tired to wash measuring spoons, so I just threw stuff in!"
- Handful of fresh basil leaves
- Handful of walnuts (I didn't have any pine nuts)
- Smaller handful of shaved parmesan
- Some garlic powder (As a Tired Girl I don't love the cleanup of fresh garlic. You can send your complaints about garlic powder and criticisms to
- Some olive oil
- Some kosher sea salt
- Squeeze of lemon juice
- Little bit of pepper
I squished it all up in my food processor (yes I got the FP out for this one - that's how obsessed I am with pesto).
Then smeared it on almost everything for about a week. My most fave concoction was artisan bread, fresh mozzarella slices, ugly tomato slices and pesto made in to a sandwich and pressed in my panini maker. I ate this for like 13 meals this month and gained two pounds back. I didn't really have boundaries with this one.

This is not my recipe or my food processor.  But I felt the need to provide an actual recipe. I have not tried this one but this bloggers recipe was chosen by me because I liked her photos best. See "Simply Recipes" pesto recipe here. 
Anyone have something appropriate they would like to share that they are obsessed with this month?

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Self-Diagnosing an Eating Disorder

I had a friend in college that had a straight up eating disorder.  It wasn't about the food - it was about control. 

I remember naively thinking with envy that I would never have an eating disorder, because I got too hungry. Control was less important than pizza and gin and tonics and donuts. It was horrible that I was actually sort of a little bit jealous. Shows the fucked up attitudes women have about being skinny. And sadly I may potentially make some bad choices today, if it could get me back to that college weight. 
A classic.

Anywhoo I recently diagnosed myself with something I would call "a reason I eat the way I do." I can't say it's a disorder. I'm not trying to shirk responsibility, but also not trying to make this out to something bigger (like my toosh - woot woot!).  

But as you may know I have gained weight and have been working hard to lose the weight. 

I was recently reading a very boring and a teeny bit helpful diet book (here) - and I'll paraphrase the quote that got to me. It was about the idea that those of us that like to eat have an inner saboteur. 

An inner voice that sabotages us. 

What does this saboteur say to you, when is it the loudest, etc? The author told me to take some time to listen to that inner voice. 

My first thought was "Pffft I don't have that. I just like the way hamburgers taste. I don't have a weird relationship with food. I'm normal, just hungry." 

And then pop - like a cartoon - I had a thought bubble right over my head that read:

 "Life is hard and I deserve to treat myself to something that tastes good. I deserve it."  

And it was crystal clear. I did have an inner saboteur and it was the idea: "I feel like crap because (fill in the blank with shitty life things) and I want to eat something yummy - I deserve a treat for what I am going through." 
Not kidding.

And that was it. I found my inner saboteur.  So now I am working on treating myself to things that are not fattening food.  I was considering buying things, but that just replaces one problem with another.  (Private note just to Joe: Don't worry).  What's too bad is I don't want stuff - it feels weird to reward myself with things! But feels right to push a cinnamon roll in my mouth. 

I am down 12 pounds which is whole size. I'm at the point in weight loss where I can put my jeans in the drier.  So hell yeah. This was prior to understanding my inner saboteur. That jerk. So just watch out now. I have a little bit more to go and then add in the idea of taking my slightly smaller body and creating muscles. So the journey continues, but I am so proud of myself I feel like I deserve a treat. 

Any Tired Girls out there want to share what their inner-saboteur says to you? Or any personal journey successes? 

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