It may not be the first of the year, but a a close friend of mine, Kathryn, and I were talking about how terribly unhealthy we live (as we were finishing our Mexican plates covered in cheese, sour cream and meat). Different from every other time I talk about getting in shape and eating healthier, I actually felt like it was attainable.

This morning I woke up desperately wanting to be outside and I couldn’t think of any excuse other than going for a run. I made sure to put SPF on my face and tanning oil on the rest of my body. I’m a multi-tasker, what can I say? I actually kept running just so I can be outside and soak in the Vitamin D.

Afterwards, Kathryn came over and we headed over to Redlands to drop some major cash at one of my favorite stores: Trader Joe’s. On our way there, we saw the new Jacinto Farms fresh produce stand and pulled over. Everything is grown locally and (I believe) organically. Picked up some tomatoes, Cara Cara oranges (never heard of them but they were so goooood!) and fresh strawberry preserves.

After a solid hour at Trader Joes, I walked out with the essentials: fruits, veggies, tofu, etc. But to make worthwhile, I grabbed some first timers: flax seed, vanilla whey protein and more veggies than I would normally consume in a month.

I will admit, I’m following a meal plan that I found on Blogilates. It definitely helps to have a set list of meals planned for the day. I am the epitome of a binge eater. I’ll go 6 hours without taking a sip of water or bite of food and then scarf down a slice of pizza. And then go work out and try not to eat to not “ruin my workout.”

I am so new to all of this “healthy lifestyle” maintenance, but it’s actually pretty interesting.

Tonight I made a mixed fruit smoothie with the whey protein. Surprisingly…good. And then I figured I’m too tired throughout the week to cook a meal for the next day so I just did it all in one sweep.

  • Boiled some edamame for a snack (I wonder how long it’ll be good for. I only boiled 1 cup, just in case it doesn’t make it past 24 hours.)
  • Baked 3 pieces of chicken breast with EVOO, lemon and ground pepper.
  • Banana flax pancakes with the vanilla protein. Just smelling it made me want to scarf it down.
  • Veggie egg muffins. Kind of like mini fritata’s without the cheese or yolk.

The rest of the week contains oatmeal for breakfast, small fruit here and there as a snack, and a ton of steamed veggies. It honestly doesn’t sound that bad. 

My biggest fear is turning down the offers to go to lunch. It is so depressing being in the office from 8 a.m.-5 p.m. straight but by going out, I’m not only spending money that I could always be saving, but eating the worst of the worst. We do Indian, Mexican, Italian, American, dessert always follows, on a weekly basis. I tell my co-workers all the time they should have taken a photo of me when I first started working and continue to do so every month to track my weight gain. Ugh.

Anyway, this definitely isn’t going to be a fitness blog but I do want to keep track of my eating habits and exercise. 

I am so excited to start eating all of this. But until then, I have a kitchen sink overflowing from the havoc I call “cooking.”

Oh and Kathryn and I did Cindy Crawford’s “The Next Challenge.” Not that bad except the next time I work out, I am definitely investing in some high waisted underwear, tube socks and Air Jordan’s.

Ever get that feeling?

For the past couple of days, I’ll get the feeling that I’m going to get in a major car collision while driving. I am guilty of being a little careless or over confident while driving at times, but I can’t shake the feeling that the next intersection I pass will send me to the ER.

Too depressing of a thought for a Monday? Maybe.

Heartless

Today, I officially dropped the ♥ from my signature. I was definitely guilty of adding hearts to my I’s and all the other girly abominations to basic handwriting in high school.

During college people would ask me what that was or why I had it in my signature and I never had a good reason (aside from the obvious “cuteness”). It never bothered me – until today. Lately, I’ve been signing my own letters on Loma Linda University stationery. I looked down at my signature and realized how juvenile it looked on Classic Crest 24# letterhead.

Starting today, this working woman is heartless.

XXII

In elementary, my parents made a big deal about my birthday. They would take the entire day off work, sneak into my classroom during morning recess or lunch, decorate the classroom and block out the rest of the afternoon for my class to celebrate. Even my teachers enjoyed the afternoon. My mom would get the cutest decorations and bake cupcakes with peanut M&Ms (my favorite) in Valentine’s Day colors, of course. My dad would have a variety of games for my classmates to participate in and gave them prizes. My classmates almost expected to have a party when my birthday came around. On my seventh birthday, my teacher was sick and when my parents came to take over the afternoon, the substitute teacher resisted and all the kids had to convince her that it was allowed because it happens every year.

Timing definitely contributes to the festivity of my birthday. Something about having your birthday a week before the day of loooove just makes everything more special. Everyone is breathing in some nostalgia injected air which just adds to the festivities.

Out of my 22 birthday, there are some that stand out in my memory bank:

1995 – my first year at GAE and my mom put a ‘6’ candle on my cake because they didn’t accept students into Kindergarten who didn’t turn six during the school year. She had to prep me the night before to not question the added year of life she bestowed upon me in the form of a candle. Take that, Glendale. Gotcha!!

2003 – my girlfriends and I went to Chuck E. Cheese to ring in my teenage years. We thought we were sooo old for that kiddy place and thought it’d be ironic. Almost 10 years later and I realize – it’s not.

2009 – gallivanting around Paris, France with some of my closest friends from Italy. From a whipped cream drink filled with sparklers at midnight in the Latin Quarters to standing underneath one of the most iconic landmarks definitely constituted one of the most memorable birthdays.

2011 – Steven treated me like a queen the whole day (Golden Harvest and best red velvet cake from Dean & Delucca) and my Commies demanded we celebrate that Monday night. So glad we did. I was surprised by my two loves, Steven and Kaliko. He flew her out from HAWAII to celebrate my 21st. I cried and cried and cried. The whole week had been so overwhelming with projects and exams and by the time she arrived, I had no strength to contain my emotions. Kathryn, Elisha, Charles, Marvin, Vega, Tony and Krystal came up from Loma Linda to celebrate also! Everyone who came out for my birthday in SF seriously made me the happiest. I know everyone had a good time and from what I can recall, I did too.

2012 – this birthday hasn’t even arrived but I already know it’s one for the books. Steven flew down and went over and beyond my expectations. An intimate night at his house with friends was exactly what I needed. He took care of everything without asking for help. Kathryn and Elisha emptied Target and Party City for decorations and really put the special touches on the night. I’ve never received 22 gifts from one person and I was so impressed with the thoughtfulness of each gift from Steven. Just being surrounded by some of the most important people in your life can turn any day into one of the best.

I’m not afraid to get older. I’m barely starting my twenties and so much has changed. My thirties hold my husband, my children, hopefully a home of my own and a high accrual of vacation days. Each decade holds a completely new life. What’s to fear?

Another year

2012 came around so quickly, I didn’t even think to reflect on this past year and everything that happened.

I haven’t been in the most festive mood with these past holidays but reading on tumblr and Facebook about everyone’s experiences and their expectations for the new year inspired me to think about mine.

2011 was a great year. In fact, it was probably the year I’ve been looking forward to the most for the past five or six years. I turned 21. I had some of the best times during my senior year. I graduated college as the Class President. I realized what I wanted to do with my degree (took me three years to figure that one out). I started my first full-time job (and then started a new one). I had amazing new experiences with Steven. I went skydiving. I celebrated my third Christmas and New Years with Steven. I got a place of my own. I let go of so much. And I gained even more. 

My only wish for 2012 is that God gives me the opportunity to learn, grow and stay happy. Life experiences aren’t always easy, but after another year ends and you get a quiet moment to reflect on those experiences and see how far you have come, you are left with the most satisfying confidence.

May 2012 be a blessed year for everyone.

Tay

Moving Day

Today is my official move in day to a house in Loma Linda with my cousin and a friend. I’ve known since I took my job that eventually I’d move out on my own, but I just didn’t know when. My home with my family is only 15 minutes away from work, there’s no rent and I have all the comforts of a home that anyone could need. Despite all the reasons to stay, I have been anxiously awaiting my own place for years. I think it’s a great symbol of independence and since the rent is so cheap (split three ways), this opportunity was impossible to pass up.

I’m so excited to move in today and get situated but these past couple of days have been really hard on me. You see, growing up, I always had two homes. I had the my most cherished home in Montebello and then I had either an apartment/condo/townhome/house with my mom all over the LA country. My mom and I moved a lot but it was always an upgrade from the last, so I never minded. But since I left for college in 2007, my mom has realized that she doesn’t need a big place since I was only home for a couple months of the year. So she began to downsize and after I left my job in Newport Beach, she moved once again to Corona del Mar into a one bedroom/one bathroom place by the beach. In that process, whatever possessions remained in Newport were boxed up and sent over to my dad’s. There just wasn’t any space. And as I’ve been packing up ALL my things at my dad’s, I’ve had to go through over two decades worth of stuff and decide what was trash, giveaway (mostly this category), storage and for the new house. My room that I’ve occupied for almost exactly 6 years has been completely stripped.

No matter where my parents live, I know I’ll consider it “home” even if I’ve never lived there with them. It’s a pretty sad thought that neither of my two houses contain anything to call my own, but I guess that’s just how life is. We settle in and when we do decide to move on, it’s not about the possessions that make it your home … it’s the people you always come back to.

Wish me luck!

Tay