Monday, February 24, 2014

Perfume

Nothing running related here today folks, just a girly/random cache of memories type post.

Today Eric and I wandered around Portland for awhile.  We'd intended to see the movie Philomena, so we tried killing time at the mall but got bored with that, so we walked down to Macy's.  I'd been mulling over buying a bottle of nice perfume to wear occasionally, and I really do mean occasionally since I'm not a huge girly girl, and I also don't like to choke people to death with crazy perfume.  I was certain of one of the perfumes I wanted, a really nice amber scented perfume from Estee Lauder called Sensuous that I had a sample for and ran out of after 3 years.  But back in my mind, I had another obsession, an itch to scratch if you will, so bear with me in my story because it does eventually come back to perfume.

I have really been obsessively thinking about my late grandmother lately.  I mean I think about her every single day because she was totally amazing, and was one of my favorite people in the entire world, but   around Christmas I just got this really intense sadness about missing her.  Her name was Marion, but we called her Mammy for reasons that I honestly don't know.  (You did NOT refer to her as grandma or maw maw, that would warrant the cussing fit of all cussing fits...and people wonder where I get it from.)  Anyway, this is her when she was younger.  Crazily enough, she thought she was ugly...clearly one of the few things she was wrong about.

 
Mammy died of ovarian cancer when I was 17 and she was 81.  Obviously in most people's eyes she lived a long life, but an eternity wouldn't be long enough in mine.  She was a hilarious, kind, loving, special lady and I do really miss her.  I often remark to Eric that I mourn the fact the two of them never met, because she would have absolutely adored him.  Like her, he has a razor sharp, quick, sarcastic humor, and I can totally picture them having a good laugh.

Like I said before, I got a bee in my bonnet around Christmas thinking about her even more than normal.  Little things started to happen.  I was thinking about her in the car one day, then turned the Sirius radio over to 40's on 4 (which I never listen to but felt compelled to switch over to), and they were playing Henry Mancini.  Mammy had a cassette of Mancini's greatest hits, and would play it by my request on the way to preschool.  After finishing the Louisiana Half back in January, my aunt reminded me that it was the anniversary of Mammy's death, and that she couldn't think of a more fitting tribute.  I cleaned out a bunch of closets this week and found a ton of cards I'd kept from her, and of course sat and read every one of them and cried my damn eyes out.

A couple of weeks ago I was puttering around the house and found this gold compact thing of hers that once held solid perfume, but not just any perfume..evil Estee Lauder's Youth Dew.  For as long as I can remember Mammy wore Youth Dew perfume, and we all absolutely hated it.  I relate to the Sex Panther scene in Anchorman, because that was totally my feelings on Youth Dew.  I know there is a long history with Youth Dew, and it was very popular back in the day, but good God.  As I remarked to my aunt today, the roughly 5 to 7 sprays that Mammy used probably didn't help matters, but Youth Dew smells like gasoline.  And what the hell perfume is BROWN other than Youth Dew??  But, it's what she wore, and I was surprisingly sad when I opened the compact and took a whiff, because I couldn't smell anything.  I had the urge to smell Youth Dew just once just for that memory, so when I couldn't it made me want to go to a perfume counter and ask for a spritz.

So we walked into Macy's today and I went to the Estee Lauder counter, and there it was, just as I remembered it.  Brown perfume in a glass bottle with a gold bow on it.  The perfume lady almost looked amused when I picked it up, probably because only memaws usually pick up Youth Dew.  I sprayed it on a card and nearly choked to death, because it still smelled like gasoline.  I told the lady I was going to walk around for a bit and then come back.  I rubbed a tiny bit of the perfume from the card on my wrist, and a funny thing happened.  Not only did the memories of Mammy and the perfume come back, but once the perfume settled out on my skin, it wasn't that bad!!  In fact, as I walked around it really grew on me.  After a lap around Macy's I went back to the counter and not only bought the original perfume I intended to buy, but also a small bottle of the Youth Dew bath oil to use as perfume.  When I got home I put a little more on my wrist (and I do stress a little bit, because the shit is aggressive), and after letting it open up for an hour or so I totally, totally get it and why it was popular.



It's a very glamorous perfume, something that someone like Lauren Bacall would have spritzed on before grabbing her mink coat and leaving for a night of drinks and dancing.  It's definitely a perfume with balls, and not suited to girly girls who like super sweet or flowery perfumes.  It's not something that you'd want to wear to your cubicle job, and definitely not a perfume you want to really shower on.  I am so glad I got it, I have been snorting my wrist for hours remembering how everything down to the TV Guides in Mammy's house smelled like this perfume.  I don't see wearing it to my job or something persay, but I definitely will wear it now and again.  Mammy is probably having a good triumphant smile at me buying this today!

And just so my other perfume doesn't feel left out....


This one is a great perfume too and probably a little more "likable".  Definitely more of an every day perfume.  At this rate, I will not have to buy any type of perfume for the next 7 years, because that's about how long it's going to take me to get through these!

Monday, February 17, 2014

Heart Breaker Half Marathon - Race Report

I started this recap post yesterday, but I was seriously out of my gourd by the end of the day yesterday and finally just got too tired to finish writing!  It was a long day for sure!

I didn't have the greatest start to the morning yesterday, but it was totally my fault.  I relented and let Molly sleep in the bed that night, and she was a complete butthole the entire night.  She woke me up almost hourly by whining and touching me with her nose.  I don't know why she does that sometimes when you try to let her sleep with you, other than she is a menace to society.  I was too tired to get up and throw her out even though I should have, but it was incredibly disruptive and I got a crappy night's sleep.  She is for real banished from sleeping with us now!  And you know how before the Louisiana Half I had all of my stuff laid out nicely the night before?  Yeah that didn't happen.  I hung out with some friends all day the day before, and by the time I got home that night I was pretty tired and didn't bother getting my stuff together.  When I finally got up, my "getting ready" consisted of pulling random running items from the pile of clean clothes in the corner of our room, shoving things into my race pack, and praying that I hadn't forgotten some vital thing.  Luckily for me the race was pretty close to my house, so I didn't have to drive far especially since I still had to pick up my bib!

I honestly didn't feel well at all before the race.  Not to skeeze my guy friends out, but let's just say that I didn't have the ideal situation that a woman wants to run in due to a "pesky visitor", and I'll just leave it at that.  I was almost doubled over in pain by the time I got to the high school where the race start/finish was and I was like, "I'm a psychotic person who actually PAID to be doing this on a Sunday morning when I could have been sleeping in."  I was so ill that I couldn't stomach the thought of breakfast, and all of that coupled with about 3 hours sleep, and I was a wreck.  Seriously, if it hadn't been for the entire world knowing that I was supposed to do this race, I would have just blown it off.  Damn accountability!  Then as I was walking to the car it hit me that I needed to potty and I needed to potty immediately.  I mean seriously in that moment, I would have disowned family, stolen the Hope diamond and kicked a kitten just for the opportunity to go to the bathroom, and luckily there were nice clean indoor ones at the school!  Lucky for me I did that, because as I found out, there were NO bathrooms on the course.  Yes, the half marathon course didn't have a single porta-potty, but more on that in a moment.

I made a huge error in judgement that morning and decided to wear a short sleeved tech shirt because I didn't want to be hot, and let me tell you, I definitely wasn't hot.  It was about 36-40 degrees over the course of the day, and I freaking froze my butt off the entire race, but I was especially miserable standing at the start line waiting for things to get going.  The one thing that held out in my favor is that it was supposed to rain, but it totally held off and was even sunny for parts of the race.

The race was interesting.  We did this same one last year except we did the 5k version.  It's a very small race and I wasn't sure what to expect from the half course.  I guess I will start out with a positive, which is that the course was really beautiful.  It was all back roads and rolling farmland, which is right up my ally.  It was sort of like a super freezing version of the Helvetia Half, especially since I think some of the same roads are on the Helvetia course.  I didn't grab a ton of pictures, but here's one of the ones I took:


The reason I didn't take many pictures is that everything pretty much looked like this, so it would have been redundant.  Very pretty and peaceful!  You can't really see it that well, but if you look closely between the evergreens to the right, and those scrubby looking stick trees in the middle, there is a road with runners on it.  Basically where I was was at the top of a huge hill that you eventually went down.  The course was very, very hilly, which I was not a fan of, though I was able to handle it much better than I did San Francisco.  I guess as a play on the Boston course there was a "Heart Breaker Hill" which sucked massively, and there was some sort of contest where they were separately timing how fast people could do the hill.  Um yeah, I was not a contender for sure.  :P  I took a picture going up the hill, but it didn't do it justice to how steep and painful it was.

Despite how I felt that morning, I honestly felt pretty great for most of the race, really until about mile 8.  I was shocked at how energetic I felt considering the lack of sleep and how bad I felt when I got there, plus I hadn't eaten breakfast.  I even did my first mile in 11:11, which was a huge improvement over my times at the end of last year.   But the constant climb in course elevation got to me, my hips really started bugging me, and my legs felt sluggish.  BUT, there was one thing that really kept me going the whole race, and it's also one of my race tips to you if you already race, or should you be considering doing one.

You see each race I do, I pick a nemesis.  I pick a person in my speed range who for some reason annoys me or just generally gives me that "Oh HELL no that person isn't going to beat me" feeling, and then I do my damnedest to not let them finish before me.  I know that's terrible, but it truly does work, especially when you are bored or struggling for motivation.  My nemesis for this race was a couple who was annoyingly just in my pace grove for the entire race, and were arguing for the entire race.  The entire race.  Loudly.  And I'm not talking annoyed snapping, they were literally yelling at each other.  The crux of the issue is that apparently they wanted to finish together, but he was pissy that she wouldn't run continually, and she was pissy that he kept nagging her to keep running.  They literally had more fights during that race than Eric and I have had in our entire 8 year relationship.  It was everything I could do at certain points to tell the guy that if his girlfriend/wife wanted to take a walk break, to shut the F up and let her take a break.  I mean, here are my thoughts on the rules of racing with your friends or loved one.  Either say "have a nice race", do your own thing and pick a meeting spot for after, OR if you must all finish together, then everyone has to agree to run at the slowest person's pace.   Period.  You don't shuffle along and get in a rolling fight in front of the world for God's sake!  Anyway after about an hour of that, I had made up my mind that even if it made my heart explode and made me have a stroke that I was going to beat them.

I'm also pretty sure that they had picked me as their nemesis.  Every time I'd pass them, the guy would get really urgent about nagging his girlfriend to run, and then they would painfully shuffle past me, then she would whine about needing a walk break and they'd stop running.  It's like, really dude?  I am quite sure he didn't want the "fat girl" beating them!  I was honestly trying my best to get away from them so that I could have a peaceful moment, but they kept lock step with me the entire race.

So craziest thing about the course was that there was not a single bathroom.  I mean....how do you have a half marathon course with no bathrooms?  I definitely needed one more for lady issues than I did to actually use the bathroom, but I finally realized by mile 9 that there were none and I just had to deal with it.  (PS, just now read on Facebook that there were supposed to be portas, but the company was a no show that morning.  WTF!!)  Other crazy thing about the course was that half of it wasn't closed to traffic.  You'd be going along, and suddenly there would be a truck barreling towards you and you'd have to hurry to the shoulder, which was gravel and at a slant.  I could have stretched my arm out and touched the cars, that's how close they were to me.  Definitely not safe, and I was feeling pretty anxious for the last half of the race.

The last 4 miles of the race were pretty torturous.  My energy levels were fine, but with all the hills my legs were absolutely shot.  But that couple was constantly behind me or right in front of me arguing away, and as we came to a steep downhill, I knew I finally had to make my move and get away from them.  I ignored the pain in my legs and started running again as hard as I could.  I'm quite sure I surprised the couple, especially since fat girls can't sprint right?  I looked at my Garmin once and saw that I was running at an 8:56 pace (!!!) which is probably the fastest I've ever run.  I would stop sprinting when it would get somewhat flat, and then in downhills I would sprint again.  I seriously somewhat know how Olympians feel now, but instead of fighting with all of my might to medal for my country, I was fighting to defeat this couple's douchiness.  I kept glancing over my shoulder and was thrilled that I was putting more and more distance between us.  I also realized that I was going to PR for the race if I kept going the way I was.  I wasn't sure by how much, but I definitely was going to PR.  Amazing what having no bathroom breaks will do for your pace.  ;)

The end of the race was disappointing despite my PR.  You finish up on the track at the high school, which is a tiny bit bizarre.  As I came through, there was not a single spectator or fellow racer standing out there, so there was no cheering, no excitement and no encouragement.  There were literally 2 people at the finish line, and they were the ones operating the timing equipment!  To top it off, Eric couldn't make it out to the race, so I didn't have him to cheer me on.  Finishing with a PR was a bit anticlimactic even though I am pretty proud of myself, but it kind of sucks when no one is there to share it with you.  


Well there it is!  I PR'd by 14 minutes (based on my San Fran race), which is definitely exciting.  It was hard to miss a sub-three finish by that small of an amount, but it does give me hope that I could do a sub-three in May at the Hippie Chick.  Hopefully that course is flatter!

The medals were an odd deal as well.  You had to pay extra if you wanted one, which I thought was kind of douchey, but of COURSE I paid the extra.  When you got to the finish, you were told to go inside the school to get your medal.  After wandering around for 10 minutes I finally found the booth that had the medals, which they just hand to you, so there is no experience of having a medal hung around your neck.


They are actually very nice medals, so I don't regret paying the extra really.  I am also not sure why that picture has a weird, hazy, 80's porn vibe to it other than I think some Gu gel may have gotten on my phone camera when it was in my race pack!

Afterwards I came home and met my aunt/uncle out for a nice sushi lunch, then we went to this fun candy store and I picked up some retro colas and a couple things of candy to enjoy at home.  I also stopped at the liquor store to pick up some stuff for cocktail recipes I'm testing for our upcoming Oscar party, so I had a nice celebratory evening with cocktails and coconut candy while binge watching Southpark!  A pretty nice but tiring day!  

Oh, and I beat that arguing couple by a long shot.  ;)

Thursday, February 13, 2014

The Great Thaw

I meant to post a couple of days ago with all the dramatic pics of the actual thawing we had after our crazy snow storm, but then I forgot, and then I just got too lazy to do it.  Now it just seems awkward.  Just take my word for it, we thawed out.  ;)  It was mostly pictures of Molly looking incredibly irritated and snooty about having to walk in slushy snow, and if you've seen one of those, you've seen them all.

I am definitely thrilled that we are not trapped in the house anymore and that we can go out and do stuff.  Today we took Molly back to the dog park to see if she would maybe enjoy the experience a little more now that the ground wasn't frozen.


The verdict?  The old heifer still hates it, and just paces around and stands at the gate with her sad praying mantis face wanting to be let out. We finally gave up and leashed her back up and took her for several laps around a track they have at the park.  She has been driving us bananas here at the house with her antics, so I wanted to make sure she was good and worn out.  Must have worked, she's actually next to me and sound asleep right now!

And about that thaw, I was super pleased that all of my plants made it through the snow and ice, including those primroses that I thought were dead.  I removed all of my frost blankets and  found lots of pleasant surprises underneath, like my new lavender looking healthy and vibrant.


And the primroses that I thought were toast?  Not only were the leaves just fine, but it had brand new flowers waiting to bloom.


I can't wait for the weather to get a little warmer so that I can get some more flowers to fill out the backyard.  I have a lot of plans for this year, and really want to turn the backyard into an oasis!

I guess the next time I will be chatting with you guys is to give you a race report for my Heart Breaker Half Marathon!  Wish me luck, and I can't wait to tell you guys all about it!

Sunday, February 9, 2014

You're As Cold As Ice

Okay, the snow isn't fun anymore.  Well, the snow isn't the issue, it's that we got an ice storm last night that covered everything in an inch and a half coating of ice glaze.  Kind of like this:


Or like our poor patio table...


That is not water, that's an inch thick crust of ice.  Any surface that was shoveled or any snow that was stomped down and compacted turned into that.  Needless to say, we didn't get out for a walk today much less a drive!  It's funny how normally I love nothing more than being on the couch binge watching some Golden Girls (or the last couple of days, the Olympics).  But when you CAN'T leave your house, suddenly you begin to feel antsy and totally crazy.  And Molly, OMG....I was about to just drop her off at an orphanage today.  She decided she was terrified of the ice, so getting her to go outside and potty became this battle of wills.  Then she decided that the sound of idiots driving on the ice (despite there being a statewide plead for people to not drive) was the most terrifying thing on the earth, so getting her to even get up to go outside was complete drama.  I got so mad about it all that I spent over an hour outside trying to clear the yard so that she could go pee in peace.  I was having to use a normal shovel to chip up the packed ice, and then the snow shovel to shovel it all to the side.  I definitely got my exercise in, and got so sweaty that I had to just ditch my hoodie and finish up in a t-shirt!

I am kind of worried that some of my plants are not going to make it.  I'd just planted a couple of primroses, and those are definitely good as dead.  So much for wanting a little splash of spring in my yard!  I'd also just planted a bunch of lavender and moved my blueberry bushes and apple trees around.  Everything was coated in ice, including my poor blueberries, which were just starting to bud out.


I have babied those things along for over 3 years now, and was happy to finally plant them in a permanent space, so I am going to be pretty mad if this snow and ice killed them!  Same for my poor apple trees, which are only a couple of years old.  I tried to cover everything, but some of my frost blankets blew off before the snow hit, so some of the stuff was exposed.

The temps hit at about 38 degrees today, so I am hoping that things thaw out pretty quickly now.  I am dying to get back to taking some walks and runs.  So speaking of runs...apparently a video from one of our Oregon news affiliates went viral this week.  Eric and I were actually watching the news when all of this went down, but one of our news people was interviewing this couple who was running during the height of the snowstorm.  Eric and I both were like, um they are fools.  The girl was blathering on about how perfect snow is to run in, and then this happened...


I know that I tend to lean towards the lazy and fat way of life, but THAT is why I don't try to run when the weather is ridiculous.  My tailbone hurts just watching that, and I will do my next run when all of this garbage is thawed, thank you very much!  Speaking of, my next half marathon is a week from now!!  Yikes!

Has anyone been watching the Olympics?  I didn't think I would watch much of it simply because the winter games don't quite interest me as much as the summer games, but I've actually managed to see quite a bit of it.  The snowboarding stuff is actually pretty exciting to watch, even though I am so nervous for the athletes that I practically need Xanex!  They really do some crazy maneuvers, and with my fear of heights I am just totally scared to death for all of those guys!

I also thought the opening ceremony was the most beautiful and cool one that I've seen in awhile.  I am fascinated with Russian culture, dance and art, and this certainly had all of that in spades.  I know there is political drama around the games being in Russia, and I definitely disagree with Putin and Russia's stance on a lot of things.  However, I try to just focus on the athletes and their hard work to get there, and the coming together of so many countries for a common purpose.  The Olympics are a special thing, and I always manage to feel a little teary when I see an athlete freaking out when they've won a gold medal, no matter what the country.  It takes so much sacrifice and hard work to get to that place, and that's something we can all put aside politics for to admire just for a little while.

Hope everyone is staying warm and getting some good exercise in!


Saturday, February 8, 2014

Let It Snow

So we had an unseasonable little surprise this week when we got a snowstorm that dumped 7 inches (at least in my town) of snow all over the place!  Despite what some may think, snow isn't really that common in Portland, and it certainly doesn't come this late or heavy.  Usually our "snow" is a few piddling flakes that melt within 30 minutes, and the big storms only come every 5 years or so.  We were due for one, but I was still surprised when the weather forecasters were right and it actually did start snowing on Thursday like they said it would.

I am pretty neutral on snow, some people really despise it and some just about burst themselves from happiness when we get snow like this.  I lie somewhere in the middle of the two camps.  When I am at home watching the snow fall, or taking a walk around the neighborhood where it's quiet, I absolutely love it.  Yesterday Eric was taking a nap and I was listening to some vinyls, making bread and drinking wine while watching the snow fall, and it was one of the most peaceful moments I've had in such a long time.  However, if I'm out trying to drive, then I get more irritable than usual at both the state of Oregon and other human beings.  Oregon owns very few plows, and those they do own don't touch the city of Portland, and they sure as heck don't come down to where I'm at.  Oregon also does not put salt down on the roads because we love the environment and may kill a spotted owl or something if we salted the roads.  I normally am very pro-environment and touchy feely about that kind of stuff, however, that goes away pretty quickly when you have a situation where it is impossible or downright deadly to leave your house because the roads are so clogged with snow.  It's insane, you can't tell where the lanes are, the sidewalks are, anything.  To top it off, no one around here can drive when it snows, and they completely panic.  They either go too fast, tailgate, text and drive, or all the above.  I had to drive yesterday and can't tell you how stressful it was.  Not only did I almost slide into a light pole when going down a hill, I had to deal with idiots who were tail gating me and driving like nuts.  I was so happy to get home so that I could enjoy the snow from the comfort of my home and away from morons!!

Today we were a little stir crazy because we have been cooped up in the house, and since both of us are off, we're used to going out every day and doing a walk or something active.  We were starting to run out of groceries, so we decided to walk to the grocery store since it would be safer than driving.  Talk about a workout!!  It was a 2.5 mile walk round trip, plus we were trudging through snow, and then carrying heavy groceries on the way back.  I am glad we did it though, since I got a good sweat in, and it was kind of fun to walk through all the craziness.  I have taken tons of pictures throughout the storm, so I thought I'd post a few.

A very crazy, cold couple...

Serene street...
You're never too old for snow angels!

So the funniest aspect of this snow storm has been Molly's reaction.  The last snow storm like this we had was in 2009, which was the year she was born so I am pretty certain she has never seen snow.  When the storm went down on Thursday and we first let her out into the yard to go potty, she was totally startled and not happy.  We have kept trying to get her to play in it, but she wants absolutely no part of it, and has been completely peeved that this white stuff is ruining her normal walks.  For the record, we'd be more than happy to take her for her normal daily walk, but after a lap in the snow, she is pulling my arm out of the socket to come back in.  Finally today she lightened up a little and started playing, just in time for the snow to melt tomorrow.  I wanted to capture her emotional journey from hating snow to making peace with it, and that's what I'll leave you with...

Day 1:  "WHAT is this shit?!"
Day 2:  "Whatever.  I'd sooner pee myself than get up from under this blanket to go into that snowy yard."

Day 3:  "Hmm.  I'm still not sure, but the snow is KINDA neat."
"Maybe I'll run just a little to see what the fuss is about."
"Holy crap, this IS fun!!!"

"Death to snowballs!!!"

"The final verdict?  Wheeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee!!!!!"

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Cold Run, Obsessions and The Biggest Loser (Spoilers!)

People it is COLD here!!  Not East Coast cold, but we are in the low 20's and there is a bitterly icy wind blowing.  Naturally I decided that it would be a perfect time to go for a run, although I mainly decided to do so after watching the Biggest Loser finale.  I definitely wanted to talk about the finale, but since I will be talking about spoilers, I'll wait until the last paragraph.  If you haven't watched it yet and don't want to know anything (though I'm not sure how you escaped it), you have been warned!

I dressed in a comically unlike me amount of layers and drove out to the spot where I did a lot of my marathon training runs, and oh what a difference a few months makes.  I remember trudging mile after mile in the heat this summer, angry and sometimes crying over how hot and miserable I felt.  Well not today my friends!  I'm pretty sure I stepped out of the car and said in one breath "Oh this isn't that bad, oh shit it's cold!"  Even with two pairs of gloves on my fingers were SO cold!  I had put a thin layer of Vaseline on my cheeks and lips before I left the house, but even so my cheeks felt like they were on fire from the icy wind.  After a mile and a half I finally got to a "comfortable" state, and if I'm that cold, you know something is wrong.

It was a pretty satisfactory little 4 mile run, weather aside.  I did my first mile in sub 12:00, which definitely thrilled me.  I have not worked on speed in a really long time, and definitely feel like I have regressed when it comes to pace.  I can't remember the last time I did a mile in less than 12 minutes, and didn't realize how much that bothered me mentally until I looked at my Garmin and saw that I had the chance to run a sub 12 mile.  Overall I was satisfied with the run and was happy I propelled myself to get up and do it.  My knee did bother me during the run unfortunately and led to me walking more than I would have liked.  I am really hoping that BS works itself out soon.


After my run I was craving a fresh salad like no one's business, so I got some stuff at the store and made a really amazing, huge salad that I wish I'd taken a picture of!  I used baby kale and arugula as the base, and topped it with hazelnuts, goat cheese, strawberries, pomelo and roasted turkey.  It looked so beautiful, tasted SO good and really hit the spot!  It's actually a nice segway to talk about one of my newest food obsessions (a healthy one for once!), the pomelo.  I am not sure if you guys have ever had one, I certainly hadn't ever tried one until earlier this week, but they are heavenly!



They look like a grapefruit, but are 10 times more awesome.  The skin has an incredibly beautiful floral scent to it, so much so that I could smell them from inside the grocery bag that was on the back seat.  I imagine the peel would make the best candied citrus peel ever!  The flesh itself is out of this world, and tastes like a cross between a ruby red grapefruit and a really sweet orange.  I am totally hooked!

My second obsession is an Australian brand of yogurt called Noosa.  I've only seen it in our foo-foo natural food store, and it's expensive as hell, but it is worth every single penny mainly because they have a passion fruit yogurt that sends me right up to Cloud 9.  I am a complete hussy for all things passion fruit, the taste of it is just ethereal and unlike anything else on the earth.  You don't see many passion fruit things around, which is why this yogurt is so exciting to me.


The yogurt itself is pretty stellar, and tastes/feels like a slightly less tart cheesecake.  Underneath the yogurt is a the best part...passion fruit puree, complete with crunchy seeds.  Every bite contains this creamy, sweet, ridiculous yogurt paired with tart and floral passion fruit.  It's pure heaven.  It's also not low calorie, one of those containers will cost you 270 calories and 11 grams of fat.  However, I think this works wonderfully as a dessert treat.  You get more bang for your nutritional buck than you would eating something like ice cream, and it's also a bigger serving than ice cream.  I mean ice cream is typically a half cup serving, which bitch PLEASE, who only eats a half cup of ice cream???  What I'm saying is, I'd way rather eat this because I get a little more, it has calcium, cultures and protein, OH and it's delicious!

And speaking of trampy broads who like delicious food, check out Molly when I was eating my yogurt.  First she thought that rolling on her back and giving me a cute look would result in her getting a bite of yogurt.


When that didn't work, her next tactic was to get super close to me and stare me down, all while making sad noises.


Oh Molly...I don't share my Noosa with anyone.  Go eat a dry dog treat and kindly piss off.  She is cute though right?  ;)

Ok, so time for some Biggest Loser chat....if you want to hop off here to avoid spoilers, go for it.

So I logged onto the computer this morning and since I hadn't had coffee quite yet, I'd forgotten that the Biggest Loser finale aired last night.  However the good old Internet stepped in to remind me, and I won't mention the name of the asshole homepage that spoiled the result of the BL for me, but it was right there on the front page in a headline with no spoiler alert.  I mean really, in the year 2014 a website doesn't know to not spoil a finale in the freaking headline??  I was definitely peeved about it being spoiled, even though I was pretty positive by about the third episode that they'd rigged it for Rachel to win, and I was right.  I've watched BL for years, and it's pretty obvious early on with the way that they edit the show who is going to win.  Anyway, I figured what the hell, might as well check on Facebook to see more details, and went on the BL Facebook page.  I was surprised first of all that they didn't have a post congratulating Rachel on her win, and then I started seeing a ton of comments about how disturbed people were about the finale and how Rachel looked.  There was so much blowback that I finally had to watch the finale on my DVR.

Wow.  I want to be careful here, because I really hate when women are cruel to other women, especially when it concerns their looks.  Rachel is a real person, who I don't know at all, and she could theoretically stumble across this blog some day.  I would feel terrible if I made someone feel bad about themselves, because Lord knows enough bitches made me feel bad about myself when I was younger, and I don't want to put that kind of karma back into the universe.  Having said that, my reaction was similar to the majority of the internet's today.  When she walked out I was completely in shock, followed by complete sadness.  I am certainly not an expert, a doctor or a trainer, but I simply couldn't imagine that she is at a weight that is healthy.  Again, I am no expert at all, I just know that Rachel's appearance immediately made me uncomfortable.  I wasn't uncomfortable because I am a chubster who hates thin, beautiful women.  I am more than happy to give a hot woman her due.  I was uncomfortable because she looked weak and frail, and because she is now being used as a "thinspiration" on pro-anorexia sites.  Don't believe me?  Do a quick internet search.  I am certainly not saying Rachel has an ED, because I don't know her or her weight loss methods from Adam.  I think more than likely she got overzealous in her need to win and be competitive.  But she is definitely being put on a pedestal by those who are anorexic, which I think says volumes and is also massively troubling.

Being a woman in your 20's sucks.  It's a super confusing time and you're still figuring out so much stuff about yourself.  It's easy to fall into the trap of trying to please others come hell or high water, or get into a mode of having to look or dress a certain way to please the world.  You believe a lot of the hype from the entertainment industry and fashion magazines about what constitutes as beautiful.  I was so thankful to turn 30 and have my "oh wait, I don't give a damn what you think" gene kick in.  Rachel is 24, so I can certainly understand the pressure, especially if $250k is at stake.  Whatever the truth is, I certainly wish her well, and hope that now that the competition is over that she can maintain her weight loss plus 10 pounds.  She is a pretty girl, a talented athlete and seems very intelligent as well, so I can only hope that there isn't something more sinister going on and that she'll dial whatever she's doing back a little.  Life is too short.

I am definitely throwing major shade at Biggest Loser in all of this.  The show used to be super inspirational, but like most reality shows it's become bloated and ridiculous with all of the staged dramas, product placement and game play.  The product placement especially irks the hell out of me, since most of the products they promote are processed crap.  But this is a new low, and I have the feeling that they will have to make some major adjustments after this.  It's pretty telling to me that they have posted nothing to their Facebook page about Rachel even winning, much less anything addressing the controversy.  I guess time will tell on that.

Anyway, sorry to have rambled so long about it!

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

"Run" at the Dog Park

The weather here in Oregon took us by surprise today...it started snowing!  We knew that it was going to be cold, but the snow was a bit of a surprise.  It certainly wasn't anything dramatic like the East coast has been getting, it snowed consistently on and off throughout the day,  but nothing stuck.  Instead of staying inside with a hot drink like normal people, we decided to take Molly out to a dog park that we passed by yesterday so that she could be off leash and get some runs in.  We have been looking for a closed in place to take her so that she can be by herself, since she gets grumpy around other dogs sometimes.  This dog park caught our eye yesterday because it was in the middle of nowhere, and not a single soul was in it.  So we made the trek out there, and to our surprise the park was empty again and I assumed Molly would be stoked to be off leash and run.  Um, not so much.

I look at Molly sometimes and wonder how the hell she ever raced professionally.  Besides the fact that she is incredibly stubborn and has the attention span of a hummingbird on meth, she seems to like the idea of going for outings more than the actual outings.  When you get her somewhere, she seems content to walk for about 15 minutes and then she's done, even though she acts completely insane in the house when she thinks she's going out.

When we got her in the dog park and enthusiastically told her to go run, she looked at us like we were complete morons.  Eric and I started sprinting back and forth in the field to try to encourage her to run, but the most we could get out of her was a reluctant trot.  And it's like, I know it's colder than Frosty's b-hole, but Molly you are a GREYHOUND for God's sake!  She kept going to the gate to try to see if she could leave, so Eric and I devised a scheme to get her to run.  One of us would take her to the opposite end of the field and hold her, while the other person would sprint to the gate and then yell "Bye Molly!"  Whoever was holding her at the end of the field would let her go, and she would haul ass to the other person since she thought she was going to go back to the car.  I am quite sure we both looked like complete idiots to anyone passing by.  We did that back and forth for about 30 minutes, and even in the 32 degree, snowy weather I was getting sweaty!  I'm pretty sure I got more exercise than Molly, though of the 3 of us I need it the most!

NOT impressed...
After about 45 minutes (clearly) Molly was ready to get the hell out of there, but we took her for two laps on the path that circled the entire park after putting her leash back on.  I figured we drove all the way out to the country so the old witch could get some exercise, so we might as well keep going.  It was actually fun and relaxing to go for a walk in the snow, though again I think we enjoyed it more than Molly did.

I have been concerned this week about my knee.  Ever since our run Sunday, I've had this painful pinching sensation in my right knee.  It really hurts during bending motions like walking up the stairs, or going into a squat mode to sit down.  It was definitely pinching and hurting when we were horsing around at the dog park today, and I am hoping that it rights itself before my half marathon in a couple of weeks.  I'm sure it will, but it's definitely worrisome.  I honestly think it has more to do with my yard projects last week more than it did our short run, especially since I was using the shovel a lot and digging up dead rose bushes/planting apple trees.  Ah well.

The next few days are going to be quite cold!  We're supposed to get down in the teens, but hopefully Eric and I will be able to keep getting out for some walks and exercise!  It really has been nice going for so many outdoor walks and runs!