Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Nanny McBella

Source: flickr.com via Min on Pinterest





I have slight baby fever. We are NOT planning on having kids anytime soon, but when I see pictures like this I can't help but think about how cute it will be to see Bella with Future Kiddo. I already know how great she is with kids, which makes me even more excited to have children.

But then I think about how my limit with my friends' children is two hours and how I really want a nice wardrobe. I'm definitely still too selfish to be a good parent right now. For now, I can swoon over teeny tiny baby clothes and adorable pictures of dogs with babies.

Reusable is Better

I have a thing for reusable bags. I would rather carry items in my arms than use a plastic bag when shopping. I was so proud of my hometown's ban on grocery bags when I was home a month ago, and I wish they would do this all across the country. I typically bag my own groceries in the self checkout lane because I don't like the way the baggers do it at the regular checkout lines.

Today, I decided to let someone else do the work and I came out highly disappointed. 


I only had one reusable bag with me since I lent my other two to a friend (*friend, give them back!!), but I only needed to pick up a few things so I though it would be enough. Instead, I walked away with my reusable bag along with four plastic bags. At least they didn't double bag like they used to.


The baggers are trained to put similar items together, which is convenient when putting groceries away, but very wasteful. I didn't really go for the healthy route on this trip so I'm a little embarrassed to show you what I purchased. 


To prove my point, I packed all of my items into my reusable bag and was able to fit everything neatly without squishing anything.


I love my reusable bags not only because they're environmentally friendly, but simply because they're a wise choice. Because they are sturdier than plastic, each bag can hold more so you can make fewer trips to your car. Many stores give you five cents back for bringing your own shopping bags as well. 

Go reusable!

Monday, August 29, 2011

Rest of 15 Days


One of the things The Hubby was most excited about during his R&R was going to see a Texas Rangers baseball game. We stayed overnight in a hotel about fifteen minutes away and it was a quick vacation. The seats were definitely a bit of a splurge, but it made The Hubby incredibly happy so it was worth it. We kicked back with some beers and watered down lemonade and enjoyed the game. 


We sat behind an incredibly rich family of five. The two teenage girls wore the skimpiest outfits from Victoria Secret and held a sign up whenever they thought a camera was on them. They were just dying to be on the huge screen or on television. The mom would whip out her Coach wallet out of her Coach purse and pay for an endless amount of food for the kids. I didn't hear a single "please" or "thank you" from the children and the son had TWO cell phones. 

I told The Hubby that if we ever took our kids to a baseball game we would limit them to three items each: a beverage, a food item and a dessert item. That's not too harsh, is it?

There was an old woman a few rows behind us who beat a drum anytime the crowd needed to be revved up. A couple also got engaged during the game. Overall, it was a pretty interesting evening.


We were pretty comfortable sitting in our seats at first, but it grew very humid. Thus, the sweaty and shiny picture of us as we were leaving the game. Look at how scruffy The Hubby gets while on vacation!


Doesn't The Hubby look like a dad in his baseball cap? People who wear baseball caps correctly: baseball players, baseball fans, and dads.

Other R&R posts here:
15 Days
Part of 15 Days
More of 15 Days

Write a Post, Help a Dog


How you can help in 2011
Simply spread the word about Write a Post, Help a Dog 2011 and once again Pedigree will donate 20 pounds of food for each blog post.  If you don’t have a blog feel free to tweet about the campaign or share on Facebook so your friends who do blog can participate. All bloggers are welcome even if you do not generally talk about pets on your blog. It's all about using Social Media for Social Good.
Here’s how it works:
  • The Write a Post, Help a Dog program is aimed at raising awareness of the more then 4 million dogs that wind up in shelters and breed rescues each year. As well as to help get them all food (our goal is 10,000 lbs of food in the next two weeks) for the more than four million dogs that wind up in shelters and breed rescues each year.
  • For each blog post mentioning the Pedigree Foundation from now until midnight ET on September 3, Pedigree will donate 20 pounds of its new dry Pedigree recipe food for dogs — its best recipe ever — to a shelter, because every dog deserves leading nutrition.
  • Feel free to mae your post more visually appealing by using either or both of the two images seen in this post.
  • The Pedigree Foundation — a 501 (C)(3) nonprofit organization is committed to helping dogs by providing grants to shelters and rescues and encouraging dog adoption. This year the Foundation has already raised more than $376,570 against its goal of $1.5 million to carry out its work to fund grants that not only help shelters operate, but to further shelter innovations.
The Pedigree Foundation depends on charitable contributions from individuals to carry out its mission to help dogs find loving homes. In addition to writing a blog post, here’s how you can help:

More of 15 Days

I'm finally going to finish blogging about The Hubby's R&R from back in June. Let's see if I can even remember all of the details!

We stayed in San Antonio for three nights at a wonderful little hotel called Riverwalk Vista. The first thing The Hubby does when he gets into any hotel room is turn on The History Channel. 


Because our hotel wasn't directly on the Riverwalk, it was much cheaper than the big chain hotels and had great character--hardwood floors, free hot breakfast every morning, and a huge amount of space. It was also much quieter and we still had a great view of the Riverwalk. A staircase leading down to the Riverwalk was only a few feet away.


We didn't have huge plans for that first evening. We went to the Alamo Drafthouse Cinema to watch a screening of "Roman Holiday". That film is really meant to be seen in a movie theatre. This movie theatre is unique in that you can order overpriced food items and alcohol to be brought to you during the film.


Since our hummus plate was really unsatisfying, The Hubby and I had dinner at The Cove, which is famous for their lamb burgers and organic ingredients. We were somewhat unimpressed with our burgers as well, but it was a very nice environment. There's something charming about eating dinner outdoors on a picnic bench on a warm summer night.


Our second day at San Antonio was reserved for sightseeing and exploring the area. I had planned our trip and written all the addresses down on a sheet of paper, but that was accidentally left behind. We thought we would be covered because the hotel claimed to have a business center with a computer we could use. The computer was so old that we had no idea how to even turn it on! The Hubby had to look through the phonebook after I had given up on it completely.


The Riverwalk is lined with an endless amount of restaurants. It stretches for miles and we were thankful for plenty of shaded areas while walking in the Texas heat. We made reservations for Boudro's and ate on a crowded barge. The barge would go back to the restaurant to pick up dinner and dessert and we would eat on the river to the tune of a tour guide. The food was decent, but you are truly just paying for the experience.

We were seated next to three elderly couples who were all celebrating their 50th wedding anniversary and who had all been in each other's weddings. I was so happy for them.


Earlier that day, we also went to The Alamo. Pictures aren't allowed inside so all I have for you is one of us outside and another of The Hubby reading some history and showing off his triceps. 


We also came across some beautiful memorials and were pleased to see that people still come by to drop off flowers and flags.


We ate the most amazing meal at a beautiful restaurant inside the Grand Hyatt Hotel called Achiote. The Hubby and I enjoyed eating lunch there so much that we went back and ate dinner there the next evening. We would have had every single meal there if we had the chance.

They had absolutely spectacular cornbread, something I must try to make on my own one day. (Pictures isn't mind, but I can't find the original link. Sorry!)

On our last day in San Antonio, we went to Sea World. Admission is free for all military and their dependents once a year. I think we would have been disappointed if we had paid to get in ourselves, but since it was free we felt comfortable leaving early.

The big splash from Journey to Atlantis was wonderfully refreshing, but The Hubby wanted to be soaked so he stood in the splash zone. I laughed at him since he was the only adult amongst a bunch of kids.




We watched Azul and One Ocean, but couldn't fully enjoy them after seeing the movie "The Cove" last year. Even though seating is shaded, I was still overheated and made The Hubby go on an emergency run for water ten minutes before a show began after waiting for it to start for thirty minutes. "Now?! You're such a girl."


Sweaty and hungry, we went for lunch at a critically acclaimed pizzeria called Dough. They are famous for their freshly made mozzarella cheese and authentic pizzas. What does it mean if I like Domino's pizza better?


And where was our little baby during all of this? A friend bravely agreed to watch her for us. I had told her that Bella was the laziest dog who just sleeps all day long. Instead, Bella did not sleep one bit during the day and would bark at any noise, including the noise of a phone call. She also woke up every two hours during the night and refused to sleep past 5am. 

My friend also called me saying that Bella had tore off a piece of metal from her kennel and scratched up her nose. Because of this, we tried to leave the hotel a day early, but they would not allow us without losing out on our money. I felt so awful leaving a terrible dog with a friend. Luckily, Bella was much better when she stayed with the same friend when I was in California. 

San Antonio is the perfect place to relax and get plump.

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Baby Got Swagger

Source: tinatattlez.tumblr.com via Min on Pinterest


The Hubby and I aren't nearly cool enough to have kids like this...unless we send them over to Auntie's house.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

On Gains and Losses

I saw the most amazing video today, courtesy of my sister's blog. After our beloved dog, Lucky, was put down, my mother announced to us that there was no way we would get another dog again. She saw our devastation, and concluded that going through the pain of losing a dog was not worth it.

I disagree completely. I cannot begin to tell you the joy Bella gives me every single day I see her, even on the days when she decides to urinate indoors or get into the trash.

She won't be with us forever, but until the day she decides to leave us, we will show her the love that she deserves. It is better to have loved and lost than never to have loved at all.

Don't watch this video if you are not prepared to sob uncontrollably. It's a beautiful story, and it is a great reminder of how much a dog can positively impact your life.



"He showed me through his example how to love, and I loved him. I don't think I showed him how to love. I think he showed me how to love."

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Guilty


This is a Skype screen capture of me waving my arms and telling The Hubby not to take a screen capture. I am still in my pajamas at two in the afternoon, in bed, and can you see what is on my bed stand? Why, yes. That is an empty carton of lactose free ice cream. I was caught red handed. 

I like to eat the last few spoons of ice cream straight from the carton. It is much more satisfying and I don't have to worry about washing that extra bowl later on. Don't judge me.

My doctor told me that I sprained my ankle when I fell last Monday, but it is healing up nicely. She also said that it may take months for it to be back to 100%, meaning no exercise for me. So maybe I should lay off of the ice cream?

A friend has been staying with me while waiting for her own Soldier to come back from Iraq. After a long year apart, they were finally reunited early this morning (0200!!) and I was there acting as paparazzi for their beautiful first moments together. I was on a high and didn't go to sleep until about 0400, thus the still being in bed late in the afternoon today and the deserted blog.

I cannot wait for it to be The Hubby's turn to come back home. At least a full year of uninterrupted time together? That has not happened since we started dating in high school over seven years ago. Pure bliss.

Friday, August 19, 2011

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Surprising Goals



new shoes

couch to 5k plan


5k

I never thought that this would ever be a goal for me. I have until November 5th to train myself to not pass out if I try to run three miles. That's three times more than I am capable of now. I want to be able to do this 5k without stopping to rest. Keep me motivated, friends.

Thoughtfulness

The neighborhood kids are incredibly rude here. I don't know if this is due to poor parenting or just a different generation, but they definitely do not have the same sense of having good manners as my friends and I did at their age.

A group of teenage boys play basketball in the street when it's cool enough outside. They always try to get that last shot off before my car approaches them. I literally have to stop my vehicle and wait for them to throw the ball and retrieve it. When I was younger and played in the neighborhood, we would dart to the sidewalk as soon as we saw a car turn onto our street. That was just how it worked.

One evening while walking Bella, a group of younger kids saw us coming and a boy shouted in a thick southern accent, "Oh, I'm gonna pet that thang!" Then they all ran over and pet Bella in excitement. I'm so thankful that Bella is good with children.

And then I saw this video of a young kid giving a baseball to a younger fan and it gave me hope in humanity.


I know I'm crazy about manners, but it's so important! 


Wednesday, August 17, 2011

On Repeat: You and I

I'm not typically a fan of Lady Gaga, but I really like this one.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Motivation

Source: the17thman.typepad.com via Min on Pinterest


Honestly, keeping up with The Hubby is my main motivation for exercising. I ran another mile yesterday which means that it wasn't a fluke. I had to push myself much harder this time around though and had to fight the urge to quit. Perhaps it's time for me to invest in a really nice running shoe (and a great sports bra) since it looks like I have found my new hobby. Something to look forward to when I get my next paycheck!

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Let's Take a Walk

The weather has cooled down a bit here (only just barely 100 degrees) so I decided it would be good to take the dogs out for a walk yesterday morning. It was not pretty. Turns out I put on Martin and Lola's harnesses incorrectly. Those little pups are strong!


The leashes were a tangled mess by the time we got back from our ten-minute walk. Three dogs who are not the best at walking is definitely not a good thing.


Bella somehow ended in the middle for a lot of the time and she powered through. Martin liked to hang back and go around me for whatever reason. I had to end the video quickly because I had Martin's leash wrapped around my legs.


I thought today would go a bit more smoothly if I put on their harnesses correctly this time around. We got past four houses and this little pomeranian ran across the street and barked at us. Its owner was nowhere to be found. All the dogs were going crazy and pulled little ol' me behind them. I ended up stepping on my left foot incorrectly off the edge of the sidewalk and fell straight down to the concrete. Thank goodness I didn't have my camera this time around.

I haven't scraped my knee in years. I've tripped plenty of times, but haven't fallen down in awhile, which I took pride in because I am an unbelievable klutz. Kinda like that Seinfeld episode where Jerry was talking about how he hadn't thrown up in 14 years and boasted about it.


I limped back in pain shamefully, thankful that I was only four houses away from home. And of course a neighbor saw the whole thing happen. I think if I had just seen someone struggling with three misbehaved dogs and fall on her face I would ask if she needed help. Just sayin'. 

Snoopy bandaids somehow make my scrape less painful. Taking a picture of your own knee is incredibly difficult, by the way.

I don't think I'll be walking these dogs again. It's honestly too dangerous and I'm not strong enough to keep them under control.

On a less embarrassing note, I ran a full mile without stopping today! I know that is not a great accomplishment for anyone else, but it is for me. While I was in California, I signed up for a 7-day pass at 24 Fitness and I absolutely loved the facility. Running on the treadmill was fun for me, but I literally could only improve by 0.05mi at a time. I think the most I could run without gasping in pain was 0.35mi.

Today was the first time I exercised since 26 July, and I had a sudden spurt of energy. I ran past the 0.35mi mark and felt great. Then the 0.5mi mark. And then the one mile mark passed and I was so proud of myself. I hope this wasn't a fluke and that I can do it again. Of course, my ankle better fix itself in time, too. Wish me luck!

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Photobomb


They posted pictures from the Volunteer Award Ceremony I mentioned earlier this week. Again, I'm not the tallest and it feels good to not be an Amazon woman.


This would have been a great picture if the woman in the back hadn't completely photobombed it! 


Still my favorite photobomb picture here.

Sharing is Caring 3

Bella on one side.


Lola on the other.


Time to wake up and play with us!


P.S. Please ignore the still half unpacked suitcase. K. Thanks.

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Sharing is Caring 2


I didn't really mean to post about Bella three times in one day, but after being without a dog for two whole weeks, Bella seems to be extra adorable lately. You guys aren't complaining about all the extra Bella love, are you? 

I wouldn't recommend this feeding method to others if you have a dog who LOVES apples as much as Bella does. I've seen The Hubby do this before and I have also done it a few times before so I was really surprised when she bit down on my fingers twice this time. Maybe she felt the need to be less gentle with two other dogs watching her munch away. I'll just have to go back to biting off pieces and tossing them to her like Ryan Gosling does with his dog.

Yes, I am watching Martin and Lola again (and they got their own yummy treats afterwards). Guinness is with another friend and we're going to do another little switch off later. We're tag teaming. It's so great that all of my friends here love dogs.

Sharing is Caring

This is how you share a small couch with your 60-lb dog.


Basically, you get in an uncomfortable position and let the dog take over. 
Then, you just stare at her remarkable cuteness and smile.

Lab Twins



These two are so similar sometimes, it's scary. I thought Bella was a big dog, but Guinness is a big dog.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Irresistible Lips


This lip balm from the dollar section at Target is mind-blowing. Chocolate chip cookie flavored lips seems dangerous, although the only kisses I would be getting would be from Bella.

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Bitch Face

Source: facebook.com via Min on Pinterest



My mother always told us to smile more. Do I have bitch face? I think this is very possible. Someone honest please let me know.

Awarding

That's right, Bella. Daddy's not the only one who gets awards around here. I received the Volunteer of the Month Award for our Battalion for the month of May. I don't remember if I did anything special in May, but I'll take it! 


I had no idea that this award would be given at a rather large ceremony with a photographer and that I would be shaking hands with the Division Rear Commander. A Soldier read a little description about each volunteer while they were given their awards. I didn't really hear what he said about me because I was so concerned about giving a firm handshake that I couldn't concentrate. I did catch at the end that I have "balanced energy."Not at all sure what that means.

Back in April I received a different volunteer award and it was much more casual. Instead of just one volunteer per Battalion honored at a time, there were dozens. I'm used to being one of the tallest people in the room back at home where Asians ruled the land. Not here though!




I guess I decided to tell you about this because I feel like a lot of people ask me what I do since I don't have a job or have any kids. I volunteer and do Army related things (with a lot of social time and lounging mixed in)! I also pick up some writing jobs from my sister and do a separate blogging job.

I get the impression when my parents question me about my days that they think I'm wasting my life. I hope to start substitute teaching this coming school year. I have been waiting for them to start hiring since February and they barely opened up their job posting yesterday. I know I probably could have found a job elsewhere, but nothing else would have offered the same amount of flexibility I required.

Is it bad to start shopping for a job that you haven't yet been hired for?