What a Day!

Today. Is a Big. Day.

Two years ago today I started my job. I recently read on 20 Something Financial that for ages 23-27, 75% of workers were with their employer for less than 2 years, and 88% less than 5 years. Sadly, not in that bracket anymore, so for ages 28-32, 68% of workers were with their employer for less than 2 years, and 84% less than 5 years.

I felt like I was at my first job FOREVER. Reality: 23 months (plus some intern time there too). Then, I had two yearish long stints at two different hotels.  It’s a totally tootable horn! And, once a year, the job takes me away to this lovely place…

…so that’s nice!

That’s not all. One year ago today, I got keys to my first home! There are still things I’d like to do to the home and I’m already thinking of more space, but it’s fantastic to have lived in a place for a year and not be packing up to move onto my next apartment…what a pain!

And still…

One year ago today, my munchkin was born! I had no clue at the time he’d be mine, but the universe sure did. Happy birthday, Rigmonster!

See? Big day!

And me? I’m maxed out on my PTO (a perk of being in a job for a while!) so I’m taking a long weekend and you can find me on my mat and at the pool!


Five Little Minutes

My sister’s bridal shower last fall

My mom is celebrating Mother’s Day on an Alaskan cruise, so my MD was really just like any other Sunday. After some learning this morning, I took Rigo over to play at my parents’ house (and water their plants), then got to a much-needed (five days a week FAIL) hot yoga class  this afternoon.I guess it kinda wiped me out, so I took a little nap and woke up with a half-hour til the Desperate Housewives finale. Instead of wasting it, I got busy with all the stuff I’ve been putting off or would have put off and I was amazed that it only took five minutes to do each of the following:

  • Throw together this zucchini lasagna dish (healthy, ready-to-go leftovers for the week FTW)
  • Empty the dishwasher AND take out the trash
  • Give Rigo a bath because he got into something sticky at G-ma’s
  • Switch the laundry and change the sheets on my bed

By that point, the house was starting to smell delicious and I still had 10 minutes til my show!

Sometimes the little things seem like the hardest things to cross off the list because they’re so easy to put off, but I’m glad I’m starting my week at least a little ahead of the game!

What’s the best thing you’ve done with five minutes lately? Have you watched DH through its eight seasons? What did you think of the finale?! (It’s still on here, gotta go give it my full attention!)

A Spoonful of Agave

This week at the PA house, this was happening:

It was my first oh-my-gosh-I-own-this-place-and-can’t-just-call-the-management-company moment, but all I could do was laugh about it (okay, and let’s be honest, freak out and cry a bit) and have a parade of contractors come in to figure it (a sneaky little leak issue) out and fix it so I could move on with my life. It gave me great opportunity to practice my “he’s not as vicious as he looks” deadpan.

Gets ’em every time. Oh, that’s ME laughing at my own joke? Oh well.

Still, I wouldn’t be ME if it didn’t stress me out at least a little, so I kept up with my usual methods of stress management – mostly yoga and swimming lately – but I also decided to try what seems to work for other people and I took to the kitchen.

My favorite roommate was always baking…correlation to her being my favorite?!  I don’t think she was necessarily stressed out, but being in the kitchen just made her happy.  One of my good girlfriends from high school used to tell me how relaxing it was for her to chop carrots. 

I don’t quite get it, but it was worth a shot, plus it’s not Christmas season until there are Christmas cookies!  These M&M  Peanut Butter Cookies are a favorite of mine year-round, but instantly become Christmas cookies with Christmas M&Ms (Easter cookies with Easter M&Ms, Fourth of July cookies with Fourth of July M&Ms…you get the idea).

M&M Peanut Butter Cookies 

3/4 c. sugar
3/4 c. peanut butter
3/4 c. butter
1/2 c. brown sugar
2 eggs
1 tsp. vanilla
1 and 2/3 c. flour
3/4 c. quick cooking oats
1 and 1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
12 oz. M&Ms

Cream butters and sugars.  Add eggs and vanilla.  Gradually mix in dry ingredients.  Add M&Ms.  Bake at 350 for 8-12 minutes.

After freezing my tail off at our last GOTR practice on Thursday, I stopped by the store for the M&Ms and milk, of course, but when I got home (and out of my nice warm-up bath) I realized I was missing brown sugar! Since it was still cold and potentially rainy outside and I was cozy inside, I didn’t want to go to the store again, so I looked up how to substitute what I did have – amber agave – for the brown sugar.

The recommendation was 2/3 of the amount of called for brown sugar (using math in every day life…Mr. Garibay would be so happy).  There was debate on whether or not to reduce the total liquid – a definite yes if subbing it for white sugar, but since brown sugar is a little wet anyway, it could go either way.  I decided to just keep the other ingredients the same and the cookies did come out a little too moist, so perhaps next time I’d use just the egg whites…or just remember to pick up brown sugar!

As for whether or not it soothed my soul, I’d give it a thumbs up.  While it didn’t dry up my leak, I did enjoy being in the kitchen and focusing on a recipe and having my house fill with the lovely smell of freshly baked cookies.

108, it’s a thing.

Today is the fall equinox and apparently doing 108 sun salutations to welcome the season is a thing.  Why 108?

108 has long been considered a sacred number in Hinduism and yoga. Traditionally, malas, or garlands of prayer beads, come as a string of 108 beads (plus one for the “guru bead,” around which the other 108 beads turn like the planets around the sun). A mala is used for counting as you repeat a mantra—much like the Catholic rosary.

Renowned mathematicians of Vedic culture viewed 108 as a number of the wholeness of existence. This number also connects the Sun, Moon, and Earth: The average distance of the Sun and the Moon to Earth is 108 times their respective diameters. Such phenomena have given rise to many examples of ritual significance.

According to yogic tradition, there are 108 pithas, or sacred sites, throughout India. And there are also 108 Upanishads and 108 marma points, or sacred places of the body.

Yoga Journal

Now, I love a challenge and 108 sun salutations (equated to the yoga version of a marathon) definitely sounds like one.  It’s about 90 minutes of JUST Surya Namaskara! My gym is offering a guided practice in place of one of their regular classes, but even though I gave myself a three-day weekend and could attend, I decided getting my sun salutations on two days pre-tri was not the best decision for my swimming arms. 

Instead, I’m moving!  I moved my stuff all last weekend and my arms sure felt it, but it went away after a few days.  Today and tomorrow, I have a bit more to do, but I also have some help and it has to be done, most of all for my sanity.

Having two homes, both in moderate states of disarray is not doing anything for my mental state. Disorganized space = disorganized mind! As much as I probably needed some calming mat time, I haven’t done much any yoga all week  because I knew I wouldn’t have been able to focus. 

Once the triathlon is over and the move is complete, I’m rewarding myself with as much yoga as I want.  The opportunity to practice 108 sun salutations is of course, always available, but as an organized activity, it comes around every three months.  Winter solstice, I’m looking at you!

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My milk expires in September.

I bought milk last night. I’m leaving town this weekend and probably didn’t need a whole gallon of milk, but me and milk? It’s a love thing. Please don’t try to get between us.

I rationalized by seeking out the latest expiration date in the display and found a September 1st, which led to a “how is September so close that milk can expire then?” moment.

September sounds very fall-like, but the reality in Arizona is that summer is hanging around for a few more months.  Heat or no, September is bringing some very exciting things:

  • My triathlon, of course!
  • The return of race season, which, when I’m not participating, is volunteering season.
  • My sister’s wedding shower…looks like someone’s going to the chapel.
  • Steelers games and football Sundays in general.
  • The beginning of Girls on the Run practices…I haven’t talked about this at all because it’s still up in the air, but I might be an assistant coach this season. Might because it’s the first season this particular school has had the program and the need for multiple coaches depends on the number of girls who sign up.  I attended coach training last weekend just in case and I’m so excited to be a part of it if it pans out (and if not, I’ll be a running buddy and sign up as a spring season coach)!
  • And finally, September brings close of escrow and keys and moving into my very first home!  Uh, yeah, I also haven’t talked about this because it’s in the delicate early stages, but I’m super excited about it, so there it is!