Friday, December 30, 2011

Inspiration & Motivation

"It's all about self-motivation because at the end of the day, you can have all the trainers and all the money in the world, but if you don't have that mindset, it's not possible." Jennifer Hudson

Jennifer Hudson has always been gorgeous to me. Curvy, beautiful, and talented. I always said I'd rather look like Jennifer Hudson rather than Jennifer Aniston. Now here she is, with 80 lbs lost and she went from, as Tim Gunn said "stunning to staggering." She is beautiful at any size, and I love how she said she's always been comfortable with her body, but acknowledges the changes and differences that come with her slimmed down look.

Watching her on the Oprah show (I know I'm behind) really inspired me. She's totally right about the self-motivation. Only I can set a goal and stick to it, and really know what I want. It's a mindset thing, and if I want it, really want it, I can get it.

I want, to be a size 8. Seriously. Just once in my life as an adult I want to be a one digit size. I want to be scared and say size 10, but I'm going to go for it. I've accomplished SO MUCH. I can do this. Whatever comes first, 50 lbs or size 8. I'm going for it. 

I want, to run a half marathon. I want to be a runner and my ultimate goal is a half marathon. 

I want, to run 15 miles a week by the end of the year.  That's really only a 5k every day. But I'd ideally like to run only 3-4 days a week.

I want, to hold a plank for 2 minutes by the end of March. Seriously ya'll, I'm getting my upper body TONED. 

I want, to eat healthy, whole, yummy foods, and to be open to appreciating foods I don't normally like. 

I want, to learn how to sew my own clothes. And when I get smaller, I'll need less fabric :)

I want life in every word to the extent that it's absurd. Seriously. I do. 

"It's our choices, Harry, that show us what we truly are, far more than our abilities." Albus Dumbledore 

Thursday, December 29, 2011

Bad Dreams

I've had bad dreams for the past two days! Boo. Usually when I have a bad dream, I get out of bed, go into the living room and turn on the TV with my blankets, and let the characters and stories on the screen lull me back to sleep. There's something comforting about other people--even if they're just on TV.

Today, my dream involved a lot of fears that I have, and unlike those other dreams, it's hard for me to let it melt into nothingness-all I can do is think about it. Several fears surfaced--my fear of elevators and heights. We were in a swanky hotel and the elevators were acting funny, opening between floors, stopping when they weren't supposed to, etc.  Being stuck in a malfunctioning elevator terrifies me. I have images of me plummeting to my death in an elevator or elevator shaft--pretty gruesome I know.

Anyway, we escaped out of the elevator onto the roof of the 99plus story bldg (I know this cause we were trying to get down but the 'normal' stairs only went up to floor 99 and we were higher than!?). The top of the bldg was moving. Swaying like crazy in the wind, and I was like "how the hell are we getting down." My brother suggested going down the stairs on the SIDE of the bldg and I quickly squashed that idea. My mum said that stairs inside we would have to "drop into" and I was like "what??" so somehow, in my dream I decided to get on the elevator and go down...even though they were on code black and weren't supposed to be working...I made it to the bottom (yay dreams).

But then, I was separated from my family. I didn't know if they were ok, and I didn't have my phone on my. Now my dream got weird with this whole storyline about someone stealing my phone, and names of people from VA in it and all that stuff but it connected up when I ended up in a Starbucks like restaurant, and these girls from my childhood were sitting at a table in the busy place having a party. The recognized me and were like "Hey" and were all friendly and chittchatty, but none of them really LOOKED at me. If you know what I mean. None of them were really, truly, happy to see me. They were all fake, and I obviously was not going to be in the inner circle. Then Bridgett (a wonderful friend from college) was suddenly there in line with a blonde wig on, and she helped me out with her phone (so I could call my fam), and directing me to a table with people that I knew. And it was amazing because I had this huge wad of gum stuck in my mouth that I was trying to pull out, and one of the girls was laughing with me and trying to help me pull it out.

And then the dream was done. I broke away and woke up, and I have been thinking about that dream ever since. When I lived in Virginia, there was always this sense of not belonging. I wasn't black or white, so I didn't fit. I had some good friends, great friends in fact, but I knew that in the overall scheme of things, I didn't fit. That I wouldn't be accepted by the majority. And there are so many factors that go into that, that I don't want to unpack here. But that knowledge was there.

So here I am 13 years after I left that place, and I'm realizing that I'm still living as if I'll never be accepted. I'm still living, afraid that people are never going to truly acknowledge me, or accept me for who I am. Even though I know that I'm a great person, and have a great circle of friends. I have this general distrust of the population, of the majority, and I've let that affect my interaction with that perceived majority.

"There is no fear in love." B-I-B-L-E

"Only when we are no longer afraid, do we begin to live." Dorothy Thompson

"Our doubts are traitors and make us lose the good we might often win, by fearing to attempt." Jane Adams

My past is something that I want to learn from. I don't want it to define me, and I don't want to carry the burdens from my past. I want to be better, stronger, happier, more confident because of my past. I don't want to let it cause me to draw back in fear, uncertainty, or doubt about who I am. I am good enough. I am a whole, complete, wonderful, beautiful, incredible person. I'm not second rate, and I fit exactly where I need to. These bad dreams are going to go away.

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Healthier Choices

Three weeks of vacation is a lot. I never thought that I'd say that but it is. When you have so much time on your hands, at least one of those weeks is spent just "laying around." Which is perfectly fine. But I'm not getting paid for a week of work so I probably could have spent that in Seattle. Ah well. I also miss my cat. My friends are giving me updates on how unhappy she is and I think she misses me too--which makes my cold little heart melt a little.

Laying around here means access to a ton of unhealthy food. I quickly got sucked in to the chips, cookies, candy and all sorts of yummy (and terrible for you) snacks around here. But, this week, I'm trying to be better. The parents and brother are going to another movie--two movies in two weeks is enough for me. Instead of sitting on my bum eating the inevitable popcorn and slurping a cold bubbly soda, I'm going to do some yoga.

I'm trying to be better about not comparing myself to others. Specifically, beating myself up for not doing what other people are doing.  This year, I'm going to try to keep my focus solely on myself. In the healthy way. I'm going to focus on my goals, not other peoples goals. I'm going to focus on what I'm achieving, not criticizing myself for not achieving what other people are doing.

I'm excited for what the new year is going to bring, and I'm truly excited for how this year is going to unfold.

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Goals, goals, goals

Ah, it's almost a new year and it's that time again! New Year's resolutions, goals, whatever you want to call them, I'm ready for the new year to come so I can start. And actually, I don't need to wait for the new year. I'm going to start today. I'll be 26 in a couple of days, so how about 26 goals for 26 years?
--My overall goal is to be open to new experiences. Whether it's a different exercise, restaurant, activity, style, etc., I want to open myself up to new experiences, and enrich my life a little bit more.
1)Learn to sew.
--I want to get a sewing machine, and learn to make at least ONE thing. At least.
2)Get a passport.
--I've been procrastinating on this for so long, I just need to do it.
3)Stick with my budget.
--I'm pretty good at that, but I could be better. I want to stick with it (especially with the paying off bills) every time.
4)Lose 50 lbs
--Yes, it's that weight loss goal that's pretty standard for every NY resolution. Well I've done it once, let's try it again.
5)Attend church 2/4 Sundays.
--I know I should probably be shooting for more, but considering I haven't been in forever, this seems like a good start.
6)Learn what a serving of fruits and veggies is, and eat at least 5 servings every day.
--People always say eat such and such servings of fruits and veggies, but I'm unsure what an actual serving is. So there's some learning in order.
7)And speaking of food, I want to find a way to eat beans more.
--This sounds strange, but I really don't like beans, but they're such a healthy protein so I need to figure out how to incorporate them into my diet in a healthy way.
8)Have 3 meals a week be vegetarian.
--Hence the bean thing. I know I'm gonna need protein so. yea. And it's cheaper :)
9)Stick to my eating out budget.
--Either budget more moolah or eat out less. Something's gotta give.
10)Try new restaurants.
--I tend to stick to my favorites, so, I need to try new stuff. This includes new pubs :)
11)Plan out recipes and stick to them!
--I really want to a)find some yummy recipes and b)actually make them.
12)Buy less clothes.
--Seriously, I'm going to cut down on my clothes budget. I have way too many right now, and I need to be more creative.
13)Do 30 for 30 at least once, and stick to the no shopping for 30 days.
--I was weak before, but I think I can have some self control...maybe.
14)Blog more.
--Blogging is cathartic. So I'm going to figure out WHAT I want to blog about, what my goals for my blog(s) are, and possible consolidate. I know I'm interested in recipes, fashion, weight loss, and good maybe I can make some "themes." Outfit of the day might have to be incorporated as well.
15)Develop relationships with new people.
--I'm so that girl who can be happy with just her circle of friends. I need to reach out and be friendlier. I especially want to meet more people I have things in common with.
16)Do a monthly "goal" check up.
--I love making long term goals, but I keep on track better with short term goals to help my long term goals.
--I don't know where, or what, but I do know I want to make the time this year.
18)Run a 15k. You know, without stopping.
--I did a year of 5ks, I've done a 10k, and this year, I want to do that 15k without stopping. I'm out of shape so I gotta start small. 2013 half marathon?? I'm going to plan out some 5ks, then a 10k, then a 15k by mid year. If I'm going strong, I'll plan for the half marathon.
19)Buy better quality food.
--Buy what matters organic. But the best meat. Don't be cheap on what I put in my body.
20)Remember birthdays for all my family.
--I have been terrible at remembering to send stuff for my aunt, uncles, and grandparents. No more.
21)Send a care package every quarter.
--I know this sounds weird, but I want to do it. I'll have to figure out who I'm going to do it for.
22)Write my sponsored children more.
--I am that sponsor who sends 3 cards all at the same time. No more!
23)Work on my relationship with God.
--This should technically be number one, but sadly I've put this on the back burner. No more. I don't want to be religious, but I want to be a better person--more patient, kind, loving, know...all those things.
24)Develop a cleaning schedule.
--I'm going to be 26, I need to learn how to keep my apartment clean.
25)Be more outdoorsy.
--I want to hike, kayak, canoe...I just want to be outside more. Oo, this includes ride my bike more :)
26)I'm not sure what I'm going to put in here quite yet. I want to have a goal here by July 2012.

So there we go. 26 goals achieved by age 26. I'm so proud of who I am, and decisions that I've made. I haven't been perfect this year, but I do know (mostly) what I want, so I'm going to go after it.

Friday, December 16, 2011


They say "home is where the heart is." As I was traveling to Hawaii, thinking of my impending doom on my flight (where did this flying phobia come from??), I was struck by my thoughts of "coming home." Hawaii, for those of you who don't know, is not home. This is only my third time being here, but, two of my most favorite people in the world live here--my parents. These are the people who love me, support me, spoil me, teach me, and guide me. These are the people who raised me, who taught me how to live. These are my role models, who I aspire to be like. I love my parents more than I can say. And they are home. Being with them, with my brother by my side, is the epitome of home to me. They are my heart.

I never thought that I would have another place that I would consider home. But over the past five years, Seattle has become a home to me. My friends, who have loved me, encouraged me, challenged me, and laughed with me, have become a second "home" to me. My job, my church, my pub, my cat...they've all become a part of this home that has enveloped me and made me content and thirsting for more at the same time.

I know this isn't a life changing post, and certainly not the most exciting for getting back on the wagon while blogging, but I'm immensely grateful for my homes and the people who make them.