Friday, September 16, 2011

No One Is Timing Us, Right?

It's been hard to focus on our pantry with me working so much these past few weeks. Hubby has been feeling a little under the weather, the poor guy. Despite the schedule difficulties, we managed to paint the first coat of white paint on the shelves last week. Since I had a sick kid on my hands, I painted the second coat alone on Monday while Hubby was at work. I am not a caulker, by any means, so I had to wait for Hubby to feel well enough to caulk all of the shelving. He did one wall on Tuesday and finished the other wall just last night. Now I can finish by cutting the shelf liners to fit and starting to put things back together!

A few weeks ago, I hit IKEA with my sister and Evan to buy my shelf liners. I don't trust much at this store, but these shelf liners are incredible! I also found some wire baskets at TJ Maxx that I finally had time to spray paint. Of course, they went my favorite color from Rustoleum...Lagoon. All of the bits and pieces were ready to go in the pantry, but getting the pantry itself ready took longer than expected. As always!

Taping alone took three hours. With both of us painting, the first coat of white shelves took over three hours. I did the second coat alone in about two (confirmation: Micah hates painting). Caulking took three hours per night for a total of six hours. Everything takes longer when your house is a mess because the pantry is all over the place! I've been a little anxious to get this thing done so this feels like a home again!

Today's plan: touch-up the walls where we got a little carried away with white paint. Then I will measure twice, cut once the shelf liners. Once they're in place, I can start putting things back in the pantry. I hope to have a finished product today! Hubby is leaving for a camping trip with the Scouts this evening, so I can work on it tomorrow, too, if I need.

This has been so fun, but it has dragged out a lot longer than I expected! It will be great to have it done, and I can already imagine how awesome it is going to look with the tan walls, white shelves, perfect shelf liners, green storage containers, and blue wire baskets! A fun, cheerful, clean, NEW pantry! Yippeeeee!

On a side note, I bought forty-eight jars of spaghetti sauce yesterday since we now have the room to store more for a year supply of food. They were on sale for $1.25 a jar, and I simply couldn't resist. Hubby was very encouraging, and I rarely get his support when buying things in bulk! However, I learned a valuable lesson about bulk purchases: don't be the creepy Spaghetti Jar Lady at the grocery store. Next time, I'll buy ten at a time when I'm in the market for a large amount of marinara! You wouldn't believe the awful looks I got as I was filling up my cart. And the conversation was not just a little awkward at the checkout. "Yeah, we'll be through this in a week," said I, jokingly, to my cashier. But he believed me, and then I felt even more creepy. Another lesson learned: when you are the Creepy Spaghetti Jar Lady, don't try to crack jokes with people. You've already been labeled by them as creepy, and failed attempts at humor will only confirm their suspicions.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

The Meanest of Them All

"I want to be gone no later than 6:00 PM," said Big Boss after he found out that the flight to Florida would take 5.5 hours with a fuel stop. Add on top of our travel a three-hour time difference, and we would be landing in Fort Lauderdale pretty late in the morning. Just an hour and a half late, at 7:30 PM, we were wheels-up and on our way for the busiest fifty-three hours I've ever had at work.

We arrived in College Station, Texas around midnight local for our fuel stop. They were expecting us, and I had ordered a few pizzas to be waiting for our dinner for the passengers. The others even saved me a few pieces after I watched My Baby get fueled. Just half an hour later, we were back up in the air and on our way to the final destination of the day...the east coast of Florida just north of Miami. We had to fly over and through some thunderstorms around 3:00 AM. Come on...really?! Finally, the lights of Fort Lauderdale came into view. After buttoning up the airplane and making our way to the Hampton Inn just three miles away, I turned out the lights in my hotel room at 4:19 AM.

And just four hours later, my alarm went off to awaken me for another day of fun. I'm an eight-hours-a-night type of gal, so I wasn't functioning very well. A hot shower helped, but I still felt sluggish. Thank goodness for a great breakfast waiting in the hotel lobby! I love when I can make my own Belgium waffle! I had a feeling today was going to be a long day. We flew from the east coast to the west coast of Florida to Fort Myers. I hadn't been to this airport before (Page), and I was amazed by the new FBO (less than a week old) and gorgeous WWII decorations. Just an hour here and we were gone again, this time a little north to St. Petersburg. I love this stop because there are tons of C-130s based on the field for the Coast Guard. Did you know I looked into joining the Coast Guard to fly about five years ago? They required 50/20 uncorrected vision...and I had 55/20. Though I was disappointed at the time, I wouldn't be trucking around North America in a Beechjet had I gotten in! After St. Pete, we flew east again to a tiny airport in Lake Wales. They don't even have a fuel truck, but we had plenty of fuel since our hops all over Florida were only about twenty minutes long. After a rainstorm in Lake Wales, we were on our way to Leesburg. I hadn't been here before, either, and loved the awesome porch with rocking chairs! After getting the airplane ready for our next flight, I got to enjoy a rocking chair for a whole three minutes before my passengers arrived for our next flight! Another new airport for me to visit...I've never been to Pensacola, Florida and loved it. Since it was late evening, and I had been up for a long time with almost no sleep the night before, I kept hoping that Big Boss would let us know where we were going to end for the night. No such luck for several more hours...we had to visit a few more towns before finally being done for the day. We stopped in Augusta, Georgia (home of the U.S. Masters Golf thingy) and stayed for just an hour before finally heading to our last stop of the night. I had never been to Salisbury, Maryland, which is on a peninsula just east of Washington DC. It's always fun to fly to an unfamiliar airport in awful weather with no control tower! Heavy rain, two-mile visibility, and gusty winds over forty miles an hour? No one likes to hear that on the AWOS before landing! We made it down safely around 1:15 AM. By the time I brushed my teeth and turned out the lights, it was 2:19 AM. I think I was asleep before my head hit the pillow. What a day!

Just five hours later, my alarm sounded again. Isn't this a form of child abuse?! We got to the airplane and fueled as best as we could without knowing our next destination. Then Big Boss called to say he wanted us to pick him up at another town. We hopped in My Baby and flew slightly north to Easton, which is the Hamptons of Washington DC. After we got some fuel and two passengers on board, we headed west to Kentucky! I've never been to Louisville before and was excited to visit the headquarters of UPS. Lots of big airplanes at that airport! Since we had a whole hour and a half, we bolted to get some dinner...BBQ, of course. I had a delicious pulled pork sandwich with their homemade BBQ sauce. Sweet potato fries and deep-fried corn on the cob. I love corn, but this wasn't as good as I was hoping. Thank goodness! No one needs to get addicted to fried corn on the cob! Our passengers arrived back at the airport just after us, and we were off to Denver! A perfect 75-degree greeted me when I opened the airplane door...I love Denver! We were here for about three hours, and I started to get my hopes up that our next stop would be home. Did I jinx us? He showed up and announced that we were headed to California! After a two-hour flight and a hour-and-a-half stay in San Bernardino's new Million Air FBO, we were on our way home shortly after 11:00 PM. Luckily, I wasn't accused of being drunk on the radio, though there was certainly some slurring going on! It was hard to enjoy that last flight with so little sleep in me, but we finally landed on Runway 8 at Phoenix. Home never looked so good!

Fifty-three hours. Fifteen cities. Nine hours of sleep. If I think breaking records is fun, then this week shattered them all!

And yes...I did get sick from sleep deprivation! Who can be surprised at that?!

Phoenix - College Station - Fort Lauderdale - Fort Myers - Saint Petersburg - Lake Wales - Leesburg - Pensacola - Augusta - Salisbury - Easton - Louisville - Denver/Jefferson County - San Bernardino - Phoenix

Monday, September 12, 2011

Run for Fun? Who Knew!

I've been on a plateau with my weight loss the past few months. You've probably noticed that number to the right of us hasn't been changed for quite a while. Dang it. After we had company visit in late July, I just found it more difficult to be disciplined and motivated. 

I didn't give completely up, mind you. I picked up a box of Mike and Ikes to read the calorie label before putting them back on the shelf. Did you know a box of those puppies has almost 800 calories?! I could easily put one of them away in a day! But I didn't...

While I haven't completely lost my willpower, I admit to not being as healthy as I want, either. I've been working a lot more this past month, which has made consistent workouts almost impossible. 

So when my friend, Jari, suggested that we begin training for a 5K coming up in December, I just laughed. Actually, I choked on a piece of chocolate while texting her back that she was crazy. I don't run for fun! I prefer to only run if it is with a basketball in my hands, or chasing a softball, or diving for a volleyball, or getting my butt kicked by Hubby in racquetball. I certainly have never entered a timed race before. I told her no. And then I thought about the benefits of running. And that it would help kick-start my weight loss goals and get me back on track. I couldn't come up with a legitimate reason to not participate in training for a 5K. I wrote her back to tell her I was in...and then she choked on a piece of chocolate out of pure shock.

Before we began training, we recruited people to join our team. We figured it would be great to have a full team to participate in the run, which is the Marine Corps Toys for Tots Jingle Bell Run on Saturday, December 17th in Glendale, Arizona. Our team presently consists of ten people total, nine ladies and one gentleman. Since we live all over the country and have weird working schedules, we are training on our own using a schedule from It includes instructions on how to train for your first 5K, which I found very motivational and helpful since I had no idea where to start.

Instead of the typical eight-week training program, our schedule lasts for ten weeks. It is a little more gradual, and the first week is just walking! Now that's my type of 5K training! We will have an extra three weeks after training to add endurance to our times before the race takes place in thirteen weeks. A 5K race is 3.1 miles, so it certainly isn't a marathon. But it will be 3.1 more miles than I've ever trained for in the past, so nothing bad can be said about that!

Today was Day One, and I just got home from the gym. It feels amazing! I even walked an extra five minutes at the brisk walking pace because I was feeling so good! I bought a new toy (thanks, Birthday Money) to help me track my progress...the Nike + iPod has a small sensor that tucks into my shoe while running and tracks distance, rate, calories burned, etc. on my iPod Touch. 

Since today is just our first day of training, it's not too late to join in on the fun, too! Let me know if you want to become a team member and be on our mailing list. People are even coming from out-of-state to run the race with us in December. Even if you can't run it in person, training will be a great experience. Can you imagine not gaining any weight during the holidays?!

I am so tickled for this whole process. I never thought I would say that about running!

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