You like me! You really like me! Liebster Award.

Y'all.  I have been nominated for my first blogger award, a Liebster!  

This is fab (and kind of sad) because in order to be nominated you have to have under 200 followers (sad face) BUT since you have to be nominated by a fellow blogger, it means you must be doing something right with your writing because people are a'reading (happy face!!).  The lovely Brianna at My Life Would Suck Without Me threw a nomination my way and I am more than happy and excited to accept and play along with the rules!

The Rules:

1.  Share 11 facts about myself
2. Answer questions from my nominator
3. Nominate bloggers (with less than 200 followers) for the award
4. Create questions for nominees to answer
5. And when the nominee is finished, you must link it back to me (as I did above) in your blog post

11 Facts about [ME]

1. I can speak sentences backwards, from the last letter of each word to the first. 
Ex: I am going to  the park today. = I ma gniog ot eht krap yadot.
It's a fun party trick.
2. I'm pretty double-jointed.  When I give a thumbs up, it resembles a tabletop.
3. I love to cook but hate to bake.  All of the measuring and timing and patience... not for me!
4. Layovers in airports are my thing.  People-watching + uninterrupted reading time + pass-the-time drinks?  Sign me up!
5. I have an irrational fear of deep water and whales.
6. I was on the dance team in high school.  In Texas.  Think sequined cowgirl hats, tasseled white leather cowboy (dance) boots, petticoats, and big hair.
7. I never ever do my hair and makeup to go out without being accompanied by a glass of wine.  Hairspray, curling irons, mascara and pinot grigio = perfection.  And that curl that just won't curl right is so less of a big deal when buffered by the vino.
8. Stores like Marshalls and TJ Maxx stress me out.  I just do not have the patience to sort through racks and racks of clothes with the potential to maybe find ONE good option that works. 
9. I'm currently training to run the same marathon for the first time... for the second year in a row (hey hey NYC and your 2012 cancellation!).
10. I'm pretty obsessive about certain things.  Our apartment is always neat and put together-- a random nickle on the floor will bug the bejeezus out of me until it's picked up.  And then I vacuum.  I wipe the bathroom counters and mirror down every morning, post-shower.  The bed is made every day, pillows are fluffed on the couch... I swear when I lived alone in a boyless apartment, I didn't have all of this maintenance to look after.  Totally worth the adjustment though :)
11. My ultimate dream is to become a novelist so I can work from my adorable office in my future dream house, and when I become a mom someday the little ones will hang with me.  And I totally want to be the obnoxious mom who jogs with three kids in jogging stroller, makes homemade Valentines, and has creative, healthy snacks every day after school.  I have no shame in my future-mama game.  And yes, you current moms are free to laugh at my naivety.

Brianna's Questions for Me

1. What song/movie inspires you?    Would it be totally corny if I said "Lean On Me" with Morgan Freeman is completely inspiring?  I sob my eyes out every time I watch it.  'Tis from the 80s, if you're unfamiliar.  The song?  "Defying Gravity" from Wicked: 

Something has changed within me
Something is not the same 
I'm through with playing by the rules
Of someone else's game
Too late for second-guessing 
Too late to go back to sleep
It's time to trust my instincts
Close my eyes: and leap!

Holy tears.  Love that song!

2. Do you have a favorite saying or slogan you always turn to?    You've gotta let it rain before you can see the rainbows!
3. What is your dream car?    I would totally drive the Mercedes Mom Mobile, the big SUV that is anti-soccer mom.  And I mean I'd drive it now, just for kicks.
4. What is one of your worst fears that you've been able to overcome?    I used to be absolutely terrified of meeting new people.  Between my current job and moving to a new city on my own when I was 21, I've evolved into much more of an outgoing, fun, chatty person.  This is huge, compared to the quiet, overly shy, awkward girl I once was!
5. What is your dream job?     I aim to be a published author some day, as a fun on-the-side type of thing.  Career-wise, I would love to own an event planning business.
6. When you have a few spare hours in your day, however occasional it may be, what do you find yourself doing?    If I have extra time and haven't worked out yet for the day, I try to get to the gym.  Otherwise, I'm in yoga pants on the couch with a magazine while watching something from the DVR.
7. What's your favorite childhood memory?    Going to visit my Dad's family in Connecticut when I was 5.  It's the first time I remember snow, and my aunt who has since passed away.  It's a very warm, happy memory for me, and I love that it's about my family.
8. What is one random thing that you cannot live without?    It would probably be this old, old doll that I've had forever-- BlueBaby.  It's silly, but I would be heartbroken if I ever lost him or if something happened to him.
9. Dogs or cats?    I would love to have a dog, but our apartment space just doesn't allow it right now.  I grew up with both and would honestly love to have one of each.
10. Why do you blog?     It started as a little way to journal every day but slowly grew into a really fun way to share stories and pictures with my family back in Texas.  It's also such a great way to connect with people-- I've become "friends" with people who have completely similar interests and are at the same point in their lives, single gals who absolutely crack me up, and ladies who have been married for several years and have multiple kids.  Love that!

And the nominees are...
1. Caitlin @ The Caitie Experiement 
2. Jen @ Jen the Newlywed
3. Lauren @ My Crazy Life
4. Kaci @ Kaci Scarlet

Questions for those Nominees
1. What is your favorite song of the moment? 
2. Describe the best day of your life in 10 words or less.
3. What's one dream, hobby or interest you've always dreamed of pursuing?
4. What are you currently reading?
5. You have one full day completely to yourself with no obligations-- what do you do to fill the time?
6. Why did you start blogging?
7. What is your favorite thing about your favorite person?
8. Who would play you in a movie?
9. If you could be a fly on anyone's wall, dead or alive, famous or not, who would it be?
10. Do you have a secret shame?  You know, that one party trick you can pull out to impress people?

Alright friends-- have at it!  It's so nice to see a loyal little fanbase growing-- nothing really boosts me up in my writing more!  Have a wonderful weeked, lovelies!

Because Super Bowl is obviously all about the food...

Since neither my team (Dallas Cowboys, obviously) or Brian's team (the Pats BOOOO) are going to the Super Bowl this year, we don't really have too terribly much planned for the big day.  We've decided that rather than sitting at home, eating dip and day-drinking alone, we're going to go to his parents house... to eat dip and day-drink TOGETHER.  

See what I did there?  

Brian gets really annoyed when I root for teams based solely on completely irrelevant reasons, including but not limited to the following:

1. I look way better in the color purple than maroon and gold, so I'm rooting for the Ravens.
2. "Kaepernick" seems like he would have kind of a big ego, so I can't root for the 49ers.
3. Because I'm a Cowboys fan, I can't root for the 49ers.
4. I like Baltimore because San Francisco seems like it would be hot.  
5. This guy is the cutest Ravens fan ever-- the deal is sealed:

Football season is one of my favorite times of the year solely because of the food (hi, my name's Katie and I'm a foodaholic).  When else can you justify eating breakfast sausage mixed with Rotel and added to melted Velveeta?  What other event gives you reason to throw dips into your cart with indulgent names like "Caramelized Sweet Onion" which you'll happily scoop up with sweet potato chips.  

Obviously my Super Bowl menu has been in the forefront of my thoughts.  The current top contenders, thanks to Pinterest, include 

Jalapeno Popper Dip
Source: via Katie on Pinterest

Sausage Balls.  My favorite.  Ever.  WITH CREAM CHEESE.

Soft Pretzel Bites... 
and I might add cheese sauce for dipping.

AND... these little babies:

Just kidding on that one.  Ain't nobody got time for that!

What are YOUR plans for Super Bowl Sunday?  Is your team playing in the game, or are you also cheering because you look better wearing one color over the other?  Dip and sausage balls justify wearing yoga pants and Uggs... right?

Back in the saddle... again.

Just like that, it looks like I'm a runner again.

Have I started actually moving in the physical direction of running?  Um... no.  I have not.  Unfortunately.  BUT, I'm actually putting together a race schedule and training plan right now that I think will really help get me back into the swing of running multiple days each week.  Most importantly, I do finally feel like I'm at the mental place of running.  I've missed it, and I am embracing that feeling and running with it.  Not only am I running a St. Patrick's Day race, but I signed up for the Boston Athletic Association Distance Medley (which consists of a 5k, a 10k, and a half marathon throughout the year), and I'll wrap the year up with the NYC Marathon with several smaller races sprinkled into the mix.  No big deal, right?  

So, without further ado...

March 16: Norwell 4 Miler
April 7: Cohasset Road Race By the Sea 10k
April 14: BAA Distance Medley 5k
June 23: BAA Distance Medley 10k 
October 13: BAA Distance Medley Half Marathon 
November 3: New York City Marathon 

Oy.  I've got a lot of training to do.  A positive is that I can stream TV shows via Amazon Prime on my Kindle while at the gym.  Gossip Girls, I'm coming for you!

Girls on the Run

Tonight a friend from work and I went to a meeting for a really great group called Girls on the Run to check out volunteer options for their upcoming season.   And yes, I 100% keep singing that too "Man on the ruuuunnn, man on the ruuuunnn."  Anywho, they have chapters all across the country and the Boston area group is on the smaller end, but it seems like they're really gaining interest from different types of women who can help the team to grow in different ways, which is awesome.  

One of the more appealing factors for me was that while you train with the girls (ages 8-11) to run a big celebratory 5k in the spring, you also meet with them over the course of 12 weeks to talk with them in a group setting about friendships, teasing/bullying, self-confidence... all of the challenges that girls at that age are starting to face and deal with.  And then at the end of the 12 weeks you run a 5k with the girls-- no awards, no times, just a really fun, inspiring race.  

I know that I was personally really excited at the thought of getting to workout and run and overall spend time with the kiddos.  While I didn't want to necessarily be a coach, I did want to be a part of the process.  Welp, unfortunately it turns out that in order to be a coach and be involved with the team, you have to make after school practices (I'm talking 3:45-5:15pm) and you can't miss more than 4 practices over the course of the 12 weeks.  Basically, the stay-at-home moms and college girls at the meeting interviewed for those spots.

Scratch that option out for me because I cannot even imagine going to my boss and requesting leaving work early multiple days a week to go for a run.  I'm giggling just thinking about that conversation.

So my next thought was to sign up for one of the planning committees and try to join in where I can.  Nope-- the big celebratory 5k is the first weekend in May, which is the weekend that Brian and I volunteered to go to Baltimore to babysit Colin and unborn baby brother/sister while mom and dad go away for the weekend.

It looks like this might not be the best year for me to join the team, unfortunately.  It's a fun group of girls and a great cause, but I feel like if I'm going to devote that much time to something with the hope of interacting/making a difference with a kid, I would be better off signing up for Big Sister/Little Sister.  I'm also looking into joining the Junior League here in Boston, although I have a strong, strong feeling that the Yankee Junior League is leaps and bounds different from the Southern Belle Junior League.  That information session comes up this spring at some point, so I shall be in touch at some point.

The highpoint of the night was acting like a tourist and getting dinner and wine at... Cheers.  Because that's the place you go where everybody knows your name.  And they're always glad you came.  Except for the construction workers at the bar who we were fairly certain made fun of us for ordering wine.  At Cheers.

But whatever because Cheers?  I love the way you pour.

I just felt like running...

If you've followed for long, you may know that I trained last year to run the 2012 New York City Marathon.  Once Hurricane Sandy hit and the marathon was cancelled, I fell into a serious rut.  I don't mean I just stopped running, I mean I quit working out period, I quit caring what I ate to an extent... it was a weird time for me.  

It baffled me in a way how some people just got over not running.  I'm sure that it sounds petty and insignificant-- "Oh, poor Katie-- you didn't get to run a silly race while people lost their homes, their livelihoods.  Cry me a river."  Honestly?  I've been through those feelings and back again.  Of course I wanted to run-- four months of my year were spent devoted to training for the race.  Every waking moment of my day was consumed with thoughts of the race-- preparing for it, surviving it, feeling so accomplished afterwards.  Of course I felt guilty and selfish for feeling all of that.  It was a big vicious circle and at the end of the day, I kind of lost my will to run.  The spark was gone.  So from November until... last week, I didn't hit the pavement, the treadmill, the trails.  

It's not like I completely fell apart and lost it or anything-- I did work out and I rejoined Weight Watchers, just for my own must-be-in-control sanity.  But a part of me started to feel like something was missing, something wasn't quite right.  My parents, Brian, and his parents all gave me running gear for Christmas, including fancy lululemon running crops and cold weather accessories that I thought were sure to push me outside.  It just wasn't happening.  I know that part of it is that I've been out of the swing of consistent exercise for so long.  Believe me, that part does not feel awesome.  But the runners high that I fell in love with felt so, so far away from where I was.

Until this week.

The New York Road Runners set a deadline of this past Friday to decide whether runners who were going to run last year either wanted a full refund of their money; a guaranteed spot to run in 2013, 2014 or 2015 while paying application fees again, or guaranteed entry for the NYC Half Marathon.  I truly struggled about my choice for a long time.  The application/processing fee is $260, so if I opted to run not only would I have to "eat" the fees from last year, but pay them again this year.  The exhaustive training was also in my mind, and I wasn't sure if I wanted to face that for a second summer in a row.  I went back and forth, debating and weighing my options and I had no clue what to do.

On Friday I went back to my running blog and started rereading the posts.  And somewhere in the midst of hallucinating whales while running along the water and reading the comments from my friends and family, I remembered why I wanted to run in the first place, why I started running three years ago, why I fell in love with running to the extent that I trained my body to run 26.2 miles.  With tons of "Are you crazy?" thoughts tumbling through my head, I opted to run the New York City Marathon in November 2013.  For the second year in a row, I'll be training through the summer and preparing to run the marathon the first weekend in November.

While I have a better idea of what I'm in for with training, I am still completely terrified.  I'm nervous and excited and anxious and happy.  I feel like the atmosphere at this race will be incomparable to any other race experience that I will have.  Runners who lost their chance last year and new runners this year will all reunite to cross the start and finish lines in a city that persevered and came out shining just as brightly as ever before.  I've always felt like New York was my marathon, the marathon that was on my bucket list if I was ever going to run one.  The city holds a special place in my heart and I connect with The Big Apple in a way that I can't explain.

This may be my one and only marathon to run, so I aim to go into it as trained and healthy and ready as I physically and mentally can be.  A part of me feels like I owe it to the people who helped me to fundraise and supported me every single step of the way.  Most importantly, I owe it to myself to cross the finish line.  So much of my heart and soul went towards the race last year-- why not do it one more time with ten times the passion and heart?  

I know that the spark is coming back because the thought of the planning for this monstrous race makes me excited, not scared.  The 3am breakfasts and Body Glide and Gu Chomps... I somehow knew that I wasn't quite finished with this stuff, and now that I'm staring them in the face again?  Reunited and it feels so good...

You can take a girl out of Texas...

It snowed last night. Not too terribly much, but enough to cover the ground and to need to scrape off of the car before I could drive anywhere. And yes, I've been here for five years and I still get completely pumped when the fluffy white stuff falls.

Saturdays are always my days to get up super early, get to the gym, do all of my grocery shopping, and bring home breakfast and coffee, all by 10am. It's my "me time" and I look forward to it all week long. This morning was the same routine-- I was dressed and starting the car by 7:15, sweeping the snow off and letting it run to warm up.

When I started to back out of the parking space and turned the steering wheel, this awful grinding/crunching sound was so loud. Considering Brian bought his brand new car in September, every horror story in the book raced through my head. I tried pulling in and backing up three or four times and I kept hearing the same sound so I headed back inside to wake Brian up from a dead sleep to come and listen.

Trooper that he is, he stood in front of the car while I yelled out of the window "Can you hear it?!" I could see that he was trying not to smile so immediately felt a little better. By the time he climbed into the passenger seat he was full-on laughing.

"You know how it snowed last night? Like now there's snow under the tires?"
"You know how snow crunches under your shoes when you walk on it?"
"... Yes?..."
"The car isn't broken. That sound is the car driving over the snow-- the snow is crunching on the tires."

He was dying laughing. I... felt ridiculous. But it also kind of made me happy. There are some times where I feel like I've completely acclimated to living I'm Boston. And then there are times when I think that the car is broken when I'm really just driving over crunchy, softish icy snow.

At those times, my southern girl inside smiles as if to let me know that she's still there, always that on the ball but just far enough behind to not fully be classified as a Yankee.

Friday perfection.

It's 10pm on Friday night and I've just had a cup of coffee. Considering my sleep issues, this was not the best idea. However, I am WIRED!!

We are typically really, really boring on Friday night. While Saturday is always date night, Friday has become the night that we come home, relax, and do absolutely nothing. Truth be told, it's one of my favorite parts of the week. No expectations, no fancy hair and makeup... let's face it, nothing above the level of pajama pants and sweatshirts. There's no cooking involved-- we must always order some kind of takeout. We either catch up on DVR shows or watch a movie. And, most importantly, we limit the guest list to a party of two.

Tonight I ran to the gym when we got home, showered and have been on the couch watching Parenthood ever since and it has been DE-LIGHTFUL.

Brian has also added to the mix trying to master our new camera. We both have patience on different levels about completely different things. When it comes to learning how to work something new, I want to read a manual and follow the instructions and figure it out NOW. If I don't get it, the easily-annoyed part of me gets a little ragey. This would be why I still can't figure out how to work with aperture and shutter speed and blah blah. For the past hour, Brian has been taking pictures of a wine bottle in our kitchen. Different angles, different perspectives... I know there's a method to the madness, I just haven't figured it out quite yet.

On the brightside, while he's been occupied, I've watched four episodes of Parenthood. FOUR! Five if you add one from my treadmill run! I'm not lying when I say I'm hooked on those Bravermans.

Welp lovelies, I'm off to flip through Real Simple with my feet up while the sound of a camera shutter clicks in the background. Love this.

Yoga pants and wine are welcome.

Do you ever have those days that start out really fab and just slowly decline into one big shitshow? Welp, welcome to my Thursday, friends!

This morning started off just GRAND. I slept an unprecedented 8 hours of sleep for the second night in a row and woke up practically dancing to the shower. Boyfriend and I were both ready and out the door on time-- another shocker. The slight negative start to the day was the toasty 8 degree temperature that greeted us, because THAT is TOTALLY normal. Especially when you're wearing tights and a sweater dress under your coat, donned with riding boots. Let me tell you, three pairs of socks or not, riding boots doth not warm toes make.

I had the outfit (and my body warmth) completely managed until I got to the train and realized that the train at the platform was emptying, not loading.

That's not a good sign when it's warm and the birds are singing. When it's single digit cold and you're losing feeling in your fingers and toes, it's your worst nightmare. I walk further down the line and assume my regular position (precisely where a door will open when the next train pulls in) to wait. The train arrives and I manage to secure a tiny spot between a person and the door, basically sealing a wall of people with my body. And then, out of nowhere, a woman comes legit scurrying towards my door and is SHOVING people in their backs to push in. She didn't speak a word of English and didn't get the message when obscenities started coming her way. Trust me-- I'd there's room, people will squish. Right then, there was NO ROOM. Persistent motherfudger that she was, she wiggled into a spot... and pulled out her very foreign smelling breakfast.

Lady, the T is nasty enough. I am practically violating the man in front of me and you have the oomph to squeeze on here and it something that smells as if it passed away and has been preserved for years? I DON'T THINK SO.

So I survive and get to work, swing by to say hi to my sweet friend Irene who runs my building's coffee stand, head to my desk to drop off my coat and purse... And it was off to the races. I didn't stop moving for the next four hours.

There's a weekly meeting that I attend regarding construction for our future office space and today it got intense! There was yelling and demanding and arguing back and forth... completely unrelated to me but vividly happening around me, while I tried to stare out of the window and take my mind to a pretty place. And then I got the giggles. It took all of the strength in my soul to reign myself in and put a lid on it. I don't know what set me off, but once it did I was gone and I could feel the men eyeing me like "This girl is calling the shots?" Oh yes, constructionmen. I iz.

As soon as I got back to my desk it was like a revolving door for the rest of the day. Yes, it's my job to help people all day long but for the love! Give a girl a break! If I have a bite of my lunch on my fork when I finally break at 2:30, let me take, chew, and finish the bite... deal? At one point I texted Brian and told him I would kindly appreciate his picking up a bottle of wine on his way home. Smart boy said no problemo.

Fast forward to an hour and a half ago. After staying a little late, thinking I'd beat the first rush of people to the train, I bundle up and head off to the tracks.

For those of you who aren't blessed with the presence of public transportation in their daily lives, whenever you walk up to any kind of stop (bus, train, shuttle) and you notice that there's a crowd of people resembling an angry mob already waiting, rest assured that your commute will be effed. My commute today was effed to epic proportions.

After the morning fiasco of train-dumping, tonight I dealt with "no train showing" for an hour. I walked up to the stop at 5:20, started to walk a mile to the opposite train line (of course only to hear my train pull in when I was juuuust far enough away to not run back), walked BACK to wait... And finally got on the next train at 5:56. That's a long time to wait in the cold, my friends.

A train ride, transfer, and a non-comfy seat later and I'm almost home. I had big plans for the gym tonight but I think it perhaps may be the type of evening I need to go home, take a hot shower, put on my favorite yoga pants, make friends with my wine, and have quality TV time with Brian.

He does, after all, get major points for replying to my "I'm walking a mile in the cold and I just might cry an-- my train pulled in! What?! Are you kidding me?! I HATE the train! I missed it!?" with

"I take it tonight calls for a big bottle?"

Oh yes. That man knows me oh-so-well.

Mumbo, jumbo & gumbo.

It is not enjoyable to try getting back into the swing of a work week post-three day weekend.  I love long weekends starting Friday afternoons when you feel like you have a year of free time ahead of you-- you can sleep in, run errands, go out to eat, drink extra wine... and all on Sunday!  Because you have a full day of freedom left when you wake up!

Fast forward to Monday evening, and I swear it feels the way the night before school started post-summer when I was in elementary school (and high school... and college), that overall feeling of "But I don't WANNA go..." And maybe it's just me, but when I don't work on Monday, my entire week is thrown off.  I don't know which day it is, what's on my calendar, what's on TV for that evening... and when casual Friday is.  On four day work weeks I am almost always guaranteed to try and put on jeans on Thursday morning.

Suffice it to say, it took a gallon of coffee to get me through yesterday and I was exhausted when we finally made it home.  I'm trying to make my evenings more organized though, so the minute we walked in the door we started supper.  Chicken sausage with peppers and onions on couscous was originally on the menu, but Boston is experiencing a cold snap and as I sat at my desk yesterday, shivering with numb toesies, only one comforting food flashed through my mind: GUMBO.  

Have I ever made gumbo?  No.  Is it the healthiest food in the world?  Judging by Emeril's recipe, BAM! it is not.  Am I on Weight Watchers and really in need of consistently healthy, balanced suppers?  Yep.  However, a lovely blogger whom I follow on Instagram posted a picture of her mama's homemade gumbo over the weekend and it was that kind of moment where I knew that I needed to make gumbo happen.  Brian, trooper that he is, stopped by the store on his way home and picked up the few essentials that I had decided I needed based on the four recipes that I had combined from Cooking Light, Eating Well, and two healthy living blogs.  A Weight Watchin' girl has to get creative!

So I start chopping and slicing and simmering and basically feeling all excited and created because I'm making a new recipe!  That I kind of created!  Kind of... Around this point I realize that I do not have onion, the celery we do have is looking a little limp, and Brian couldn't find okra at the store.  We basically have red and yellow peppers, a can of Rotel, four chopped tomatoes, the roux and sliced chicken sausage and chicken breasts in a big pot.  I... was doubtful, but excited at the potential!  

I just went for it and simmered the heck out of it.  I fear that the healthified version perhaps left out key ingredients though, because there just wasn't a ton of flavor.  It had kick from my cajun seasoning, and I added a bit of salt, but it wasn't what I've always imagined gumbo to be.  Granted, half the flavorful ingredients were left out so THAT could be the kicker.

Regardless, we were settled on the couch with our brown rice gumbo by 7:30, watching The Wire and navigating Pinterest (well, I was navigating Pinterest, not Brian).  And then I fell asleep.  At 9:22pm.  Brian woke me up, sent me to bed, and I don't think that I moved for SEVEN HOURS.  I set my alarm last night for 4:40am so I could go to the gym, but I cannot lie-- I woke up, reset the alarm for 6:20 and climbed back into bed.  This means that I actually got EIGHT HOURS of sleep.  This never, ever happens.  I feel like an entirely different person this morning so all of that mumbo jumbo about "Your day is determined by your previous night's sleep" is true.  

I've made a deal with myself that if I can blog for 30 consecutive days and up my followers by good old fashioned commenting to new bloggers that I start to read, I'm going to splurge on a custom blog design.  So... here we go!

The Bravermans + Girls = Sunday Perfection

If I could choose to be adopted by anyone... I would want to be adopted by the Bravermans.

Don't get me wrong-- I sincerely love my family with all of my heart.  I would never wish for another family.  But if I were FORCED to choose to be someone else's daughter/sister, it would SO be with them.  Apparently I'm the last one to catch the Parenthood train... but I'm so glad that I have a ticket as a passenger!  I started watching the first few episodes on our flight back from Texas last Saturday and by the time they were over... I felt sad.  Like I was saying goodbye to people that I knew!  Okay, so that sounds slightly pathetic, but whatever.  In my opinion, it's a sign of a wonderfully written, extremely well-acted TV show if you feel completely connected to the characters.

Proof?  There's a big ole Pats vs. Texans game going on in my living room right now... and I am sitting crisscross applesauce on our bed, headphones and sweatshirt on, completely immersed in Season 1, Episode 9.  There is no doubt in my mind that when I am completely caught up on the episodes and have to wait week-to-week with the rest of the fans, I will hit that point of having no idea what to do with myself because THE BRAVERMANS!  WHEN WILL THEY BE BACK?  I know big stuff has happened in the last, oh... three seasons, and I just cannot wait to continue catching up.

Also?  This is happening at 10pm.

Hannah, Marnie, Jessa and Shoshanna are back in my life as well.  If you aren't watching Girls... get on it, friends.  Not a single episode has been viewed where I didn't feel like it was myself with my girlfriends up on the screen.  And the writing?  It blows me away.  It's so easy to relate to the characters, all girls in their mid-20s, who are going through what girls my age are going through.  It's not all sugar-coated and fake... it's like I'm standing in the funky Brooklyn kitchen wanting to dance around with Hannah.  Oh, and ask Marnie (Allison Williams) for hair advice.  Girl gives me SERIOUS hair envy.

No one could ever hate me as much as I hate myself, okay? So any mean thing someone’s gonna think of to say about me, I’ve already said to me, about me, probably in the last half hour!” – Hannah Horvath

Sometimes being stuck in my own head is so exhausting it makes me want to cry.” – Marnie Michaels 

If you have the chance tonight, kick the boy out, curl up on your couch with a glass of wine in your yoga pants, and love the ever-loving goodness out of the season premiere.  Trust me on this one, y'all.


So I rejoined/recommitted to Weight Watchers last Sunday morning. This week has been great- I've pointed, measured, weighed, evaluated, and drowned myself in water. It was like I was JSimps herself (minus the infant + one on the way), only with JHud's continued awesome body.

My routine, when I'm in it, is to work out early Saturday mornings, run my errands and grocery shop... Basically do all of the things I want out of the way for the day/weekends. I went to sleep last night telling myself I was going to wake up and run 6 easy miles this morning.

This is probably the point where I should mention that I haven't extensively worked out since the marathon training ended-- two months ago. And when I say extensively... I mean at all, minus a few days of yoga On Demand and the elliptical while watching Girls episodes on my Kindle.

Guess what happens when you don't in forever then hop on the treadmill like you're in marathon shape? You make it 1.42 miles and start swearing through your gasps for breath. I knew that I lose endurance pretty quickly but that? Was a kick in the face. A humorous kick in the face, but painful no less.

Lesson learned for the day? When the extent of your exercise is the stairs at the train station twice a day, don't expect to busy out a 10k like it's no big deal. When you always kind of sucked at the running as a whole, why the eff would you think you'd just jump back in? On the brightside, I'm totally coming home and making my 2013 race calendar.

What doesn't kill us (and I swear I thought it would) makes us stronger, right?