I’m not a Millennial but I am becoming a Minimalist!

My Facebook friends know that I read the book 29 Gifts last month and I completed a month of giving.

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It came very easy to me and I loved each and every day. The gifts ended up giving back to me. I learned that even though I am a glass half full kind of girl and very giving by nature, by giving with intention it opens my heart to peace and joy beyond compare!

My FB freinds also know that my sis challenged me this month to join her in the Minimalist Game.

My husband Ron and I started on July 8th. Each of us are giving away 8 things on the 8th of July and then 9 things on the 9th of July and so forth. I added it up and when it is all said and done each of us will have either trashed, recycled, given away or sold 496 things each. That’s almost 1000 items!  Last year we read, The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up: The Japanese Art of Decluttering and Organizing so Ron and I do have a head start and have paired down so much already. We are very excited! If you are interested, there is a movie on NetFlix right now that can inspire you.

Well what no one knows yet is what has been happening to me since.

When I sit down at night, Ron is usually already sitting in his Lazyboy and has some History Channel or NatGeo show on.  I often love those shows but sometimes I want to watch the latest episode of Alone or The Pioneer Woman.  Ron is not a fan of either of those but he will watch them with me on occasion.  On Monday night I was all caught up on Alone and PW so when I set down, I asked him if we could switch to Apple TV and watch YouTube videos on minimalism.  Every video we pulled up was good to me but Ron wasn’t in to it at all.  Somehow we ended up on this channel:  Living with Lucie and we proceeded to watch for goodness knows how long!  Lucie is young.  We could be her parents.  I have no idea what in the world compelled us to keep watching but we both loved her!  I asked our 22 year old daughter Lydia about Lucie and she knew her well.  I think Lucie must be a big deal with Millennials.

We watched the video when Lucie didn’t wash her hair for 2 weeks.  We watched when she lived on $50 one week.  (She lives in NYC)  We watched when she went without her phone for 5 days.  We watched when she tried to produce no trash for 5 days.  We watched when she wore the same outfit for 5 days.  And of course, we watched when she tried minimalism for 5 days.

So what do I proceed to do on Tuesday morning? I immediately tried to see if I could go without my phone for 5 days.  I did have a caveat that I could use it only for phone calls and for texts from people that didn’t know I was trying to not use my phone.  I also allowed myself to use it for Audible when I was driving only.

I made it okay through Tuesday.

However, today I have failed.  I was eating lunch in the break-room and I was at a table by myself.  There were 2 young females (I guess you would call them Millennials) that I did not know that were sitting at a table beside me.  The first thing I noticed was that one of them had a cloth napkin in her lap.  I was so impressed and knew this was something that I was going to try to incorporate so I wouldn’t have to waste the company paper towels.  I already do not use the plastic cutlery and bring my own silverware from home.  I even brought an old cutting board from home today to leave at work so I could cut my apple.  (Yay for getting rid of a home item and yay for having something to use to cut my apple on each day and not waste a paper plate!)  I was feeling so good.

However, since I didn’t have my phone, I had to listen in to their conversation.  They proceeded to talk constantly about how much stuff their parents had and how they didn’t want any of it.  I started to feel uncomfortable and I couldn’t take it any longer.  I had to do something!  I reached for my phone and started scrolling.  I challenge you.  Try it!  See if you can sit alone and eat beside other people that are talking and do nothing.

Anyway, due to this conversation I overheard, I’m really going to try and not push my stuff off on Andie and Lydia.  I told my FB freinds that I had to save some cookbooks that I was going through for Andie but I’m really going to try and not give anything else.

What is so sentimental to me, is not to them!

Last year after The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up, I made a lot of progress.  I took pictures of the girls’ homemade Christmas ornaments that they had made in Girl Scouts and school.  After I photographed them, I gave the ornaments a kiss and put them in the trash.  I thanked the ornaments for the joy they had given me and said goodbye.  (Please don’t think I’m crazy….that is what the book says to do.)  We hadn’t used them in years on the tree and I don’t know why I was hanging on to them for so long.

Anyway, I guess to sum it up.  I’m trying to be more conscious about everything.  I’m trying to use my phone less.  I’m trying to produce less trash.  But someone, please tell me that there is research out there somewhere that says that by not using the paper towels at work and washing my own cloth napkins it s better for the environment.   I’m already wondering if the little bit of dish soap and water I use at work to wash my lunch dishes is better then just bringing my lunch in disposable containers.  It must be.  I hope!  I know my lunches are way healthier than a frozen dinner anyway.

Tonight I’m tackling the VCR tapes and the DVDs.  My biggest number so far that I’ve gotten rid of has been 32 Playdough containers.  I had a big plastic tub filled with small Playdough containers and loads of cookie cutters for my grandchildren.  Since the Playdough was pretty dried out anyway and since the grandchildren have moved so far away, this was  an easy decision.  I kept all the cookie cutters though!  Also, you’ll be proud to know that I trashed the Playdough but I recycled all the little containers.

I think the VCR tapes and the DVDs will out number the Playdough tubs!  So excited!

I know I’m behind on race reports and I have them in my draft mode.  I promise to get them up soon.  I’ve got to do a post on my Slim in 6 video challenge too.  I’m doing pretty good but I haven’t’ been perfect with it.

So long for now!  Happy Running!  Happy Eating!  Happy DeCluttering!  and now Happy using our phones less, and Happy producing less trash!

Make sure you have your stainless steel straw too in your purse!  Go strawless!

Muuuuwah!  xxoo

PS… go check out Lucie and get inspired!

 

 

 

 

Resolve

The end of August!  How in the world is it almost fall already?

Time go so much faster than it used to!

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I thought I’d pop in and give an update to my New Year’s Resolutions.

  • First up was the Run Streak.  I ran every day for 65 days.  Most days I ran at least 3 miles but there were some of the days that I only ran 1 mile.  Two times I ran in place for 10 minutes.  I know, Crazy!  I really wanted the sweatshirt and I was so hoping I could make it all year but it wasn’t in the cards.  On the day before the Chattanooga Half Marathon, I “forgot to run.”  I didn’t realize it until the next day and I was so bummed.  I truly just forgot.  After that, I didn’t have the heart for it anymore.  I may try it again next year and see if I can get farther.  Maybe not though.  A runner I met on Facebook that  is much faster than me told me her secret to going fast is scheduling in a LOT of rest days.

 

  • Next was the Tai Chi and Kung Fu experiment.  I was a student for 3 months and made it to Blue Belt and boy was it fun but very, very, hard.  I passed the Tai Chi test too. This proved to be the most mentally challenging thing I’ve done in my adult life. I really loved it but after the Blue Belt test we had to purchase mouth guards and then we had to start sparring.  Like in real fighting.  Ummm, No thank you.  I respectfully withdrew from class and wished Ron the very best.  I secretly think he’s happy I’m not a student anymore.  He was excited to share it with me but in the end, it was his thing and not for me.

 

  • When I gave up Kung Fu, I knew I needed something for cross training.  I had huge success last year with Cross Fit and I really enjoyed it.  However, I really wanted to work out in the mornings before work to help use my time more efficiently.  My coach’s box had a 5:30am class and I did try it a couple of times.  I’d leave the box as close to 6:30am as I could but more times than not, I’d still end up in bad traffic.  Sometimes I wouldn’t get to work until 7:30 and I’d have just barely enough time to shower and get to my desk by 8:00.  It wasn’t working.  And, even though the 5:30am coach was awesome, I missed Liz, the owner and head coach.  I was very close to giving up on my goal of morning workouts and just sucking it up and trying to make it to after work sessions.  However, my good friend and running buddy, Amelia, had been talking about Camp Gladiator.  It just so happened that they were running a huge promotion.  I tried it out in March and was hooked.

Let me give you all a review of Camp Gladiator.  Each time you go to camp you “check-in.”  I’ve checked in 41 times so far since March 16th.  That’s an average of 2 times a week.  That’s pretty much what I was doing last year with CrossFit.  My goal is 3x week so I’m hoping to up my game for the rest of this year.

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Camp Gladiator has outdoor camps just about everywhere.  I think there is something like 75 different locations and times in the Raleigh area.  It’s a group fitness class with a personal trainer.  Most of the camps are in the mornings but they do have camps after work and even a new one coming up during the lunch hour.  They have a couple of locations that offer Saturday camps.  You have to bring your own mat and dumbbells but CG provides all the other equipment.  A couple of the camps have indoor locations at area churches and such but some just have parking decks and awnings to get under if it rains.  It really isn’t a problem at all.  I think it has only been raining 2 times that I wanted to go to camp.  1 time I went to the camp at the United Methodist Church in Garner since they have a gym and the other time I went to my regular camp at Cameron Village.  I run all the time in all kinds of weather.  Cross Training outdoors is no biggie at all.  In fact I love it!  This is going to sound cheesy but near the end of the workout when we are stretching and on our mats, I love to stare off into the sky.   I look at the moon and stars and the clouds.  I notice the rising sun.  It really is a great source of inspiration.  Think about it.  How many chances do you get to lay on your back and look into the heavens on a regular work day?  Sure you can when your at the beach on vacation but how often do you do it during a normal week?

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The way CG works is they have 4 weeks at a time for camps.  Each week is different:  Endurance, Strength and Agility, High Intensity Interval Training, and lastly Peak or Metabolic Conditioning week.  The 5th week is what they call Bold Week and that’s when you can choose to take a break or try a different kind of workout.  During these Bold weeks they have things like Zumba, Cardio Dance, Yoga, Run clubs, etc.

Camp Gladiator has helped me a lot with strength.  I’m doing so much better on push-ups.  I can do 10 now on my toes but I don’t go very low.  One of my coaches told me she wants me to stay on my knees for a while longer until I can get stronger.  Not gonna lie here, it hurt my feelings but I know it is the  truth.  Form over speed and number of reps!  I’ve still got a lot of work to do in the flexibility area also.

The best things about CG is all the amazing people.  Everyone is so nice and supportive.  All the coaches are very motivating.

  • My last resolution for 2016 was to try and not buy anything.  I’ll do a separate post on this.  I haven’t been perfect but I haven’t given up either.

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Best wishes to all as we strive to make the most of our time and push forward in our goals.

Good Vibrations

Last Thursday my good friend and co-worker, Susan, called me and invited Ron and me to go see Brian Wilson of the Beach Boys with her.  She had 3 tickets and her daughter and daughter’s boyfriend had to cancel on her unexpectedly.  For a split second when she invited me, I thought about my long run that was scheduled for Saturday.  I knew if I stayed out late there would be no way that I could make it up in time to get my run in.  I had promised my coach and other running friends that I wasn’t going to miss any more long runs and I was so close to thanking Susan but giving her my regrets.

For some reason though, I didn’t.  I told her I’d ask Ron and get back to her.  I gave Ron a call and within minutes we had plans to go the the award winning, Pet Sounds tour.

Susan’s gracious gift of the tickets was amazing.  We were honored to treat her to dinner.  And, what restaurant is right across from the Duke Energy Center for Performing Arts?  You guessed it!  My favorite…….Living Kitchen!

Susan is an omnivore but she was sweet and seemed to enjoy the raw veggie creations.  We had so much fun at dinner!

We got an appetizer but they were so fast with our choices we barely touched it.  It was yummy though.

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The tri color hummus was so delicious and that bread there is my very favorite too!  It is Great Harvest bread and they make is especially for Living Kitchen.

My choice was the Fire and Brimstone Burger with the Broccoli Waldorf .

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Words cannot express how much I loved this!  It isn’t too hot in the beginning but then after a few bites, it hits you.  I love spicy so I was in heaven!

Ron got the Rawco Taco Salad.

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Ron liked it a lot.  He wasn’t very hungry and it was a perfect light choice.  He gave me a bite and man was it good!

Susan got the Avocado and Basil Sandwich with the beet salad as a side.  She made me smile when she got the beets.  Smile

A fellow beet lover!

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Susan wasn’t a fan of hummus so she got it on the side just in case.  She said this hummus was good though.

You know I’m a sweet-a-holic so I tried a different dessert from our first visit.

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It was called the Turtle Cake but in my opinion, it was exactly like German Chocolate Cake!   Wowzer!  The very best ever!

Susan got the cheesecake.  I can’t remember if it was the Lemon Berry like I got last time or if it was the Passion Fruit.  She liked it!

If you are in the area, please give Living Kitchen a try.  I promise you.  You will not believe that it is raw and vegan!

Next up was the concert.  I was born in 1965 so The Beach Boys were a little before my time.  I do love them though.  I think it’s because my sisters are 7 and 11 years older than me.  I was able to sing along to almost every one of the songs.

My favorites of course were Sloop John B, Good Vibrations, and Help Me Rhonda.  But now after the concert, my new favorite is God Only Knows.  Susan, Ron and I had a blast singing along with all the other old folks that were in the audience.  (Ha!)

As predicted, I missed my long run last Saturday.  Ron didn’t miss Kung Fu though and he was up and out of the house by 9:00am.  I had the whole day to myself and I Googled and YouTubed all things Brian Wilson and The Beach Boys for hours.  I’m a true expert on them now.

The coolest thing was when Ron got home from Kung Fu he found the movie for us and we watched, Love and Mercy.  I ‘m so happy that Brian happened upon Melinda in that car dealership.  Saved his life for sure!

Moral of the story is, eat some plants, stick around those that give you Good Vibrations, and don’t be afraid to skip a run or two every now and then.

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Here’s hoping you have,

“Love and mercy, that’s what you need tonight
So love and mercy to you and your friends tonight”

For the Love of Blueberries

I’ve been making this awesome granola for a while.  It is to die for!  The recipe comes from Heather Crosby’s Yum Universe.  YU is a great source for vegan inspiration.  I love snacking on this granola but just recently I have started putting it in my Coconut Milk yogurt for breakfast.  I get it from Trader Joe’s and I love both the vanilla and the blueberry flavors.

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I got in the habit of eating a pound of greens for breakfast last summer when I was following Chef AJ’s program.  I know that veggies are so important but for some reason a nice bowl of oats or granola topped yogurt is pure heaven to me.

I dove into this bowl after a very hot and humid 6.5 mile tempo run this morning.  Hit the spot!

Go on over to Yum Universe and make up some Easy Blueberry and Cherry Granola.  You won’t be disappointed.  It is super easy and oh so delicious.

Since today is the 31st of December, I was wondering if you have any resolutions or goals?  I do.  I’m shooting to run everyday in 2016.  I’ve signed up for a Run Streak and I just know it is going to be a hoot.  Along with running every day, I’m hoping to hit 1000 miles in 2016.

I also am giving CrossFit a rest and signing up for Tai Chi.  My husband has been after me for a while to join him and he’s finally talked me into it.  I might do Kung Fu too.  You never know!

My big goal for 2016 is to not purchase anything new.  I’ve been intrigued with the whole minimalist movement and this one in particular keeps jumping into my brain.  Last spring I bought 3 new pair of running shoes when they were on sale and I haven’t used one of them yet.  So, I shouldn’t need anything right!?  I’m even paying for our one race for 2016 tonight so I won’t have those expenses in 2016.  Maybe I can even go the whole year without even setting foot in a store?  I could by our fruits and veggies from the farmer’s market and I could make a list of other necessities (dog and cat food, laundry detergent, toiletries, etc.) and get Ron to pick them up for us.  Who knows?  Wouldn’t that be cool if I could make it?

My huge fitness goal is to of course to try and get faster and I am going to work on it.  However, flexibility is what I’m going to really focus on.  I am so  horribly un-flexible it is pathetic.

Happy New Year Everyone!  I pray 2016 is all you are dreaming of and more!

 

 

 

 

 

To Do List

Well I’ve made it back from vacation and I’m starting to get back in the swing of things.  I’ve got a lot of things on my to do list so I thought I’d share them here and ask for a little of accountability.

  • I need to get my San Francisco half marathon race recap up.  It was wonderful and I want to share while the memories are still fresh!

Mel on the GGB SF half marathon

  • I want to share all our Pacific Coast Highway adventures.  It was amazing.  I’ll get that post up soon as well.

PCH and Mel

    • It’s August and I want to be “All In for August” like my friend Amelia.  I want to focus on strength, running, eating right, and getting plenty of rest and H2O.
    • I want to be like my friend Ann and sign up for EDD  (every damn day) at CrossFit.  We sign up each week and usually I only do 3 CF classes but I’ve longed to write EDD like Ann and some of the other CFers.  They are amazing!
    • I also want to complete my long runs just like they appear on my 50 mile training plan.  Here are the distances for each Sunday from now until the race.

26  26  10  28  28  10  10  50

That’s right.  Only 7 more Sunday’s until Lake Hinson and 4 of those 7 Sunday’s call for a marathon or better long run.  My friends Connie and Kim say that I don’t need to worry and that to prepare for a 50 miler I don’t need to focus so much on huge miles.  That was confirmed today when I read this blog post.  (Check out #3 in particular)

I still want to do those long runs though.  I’ll be too nervous at Lake Hinson if I don’t get some miles in.

My Wednesday runs are getting longer on the ole’ training plan too.  Here are the next 6 Wednesday’s:

10  10  8  12  12  8           I have no idea how I’m going to manage that!

So there you go.  Are you a list maker?  I have always been one.  I’ll probably print out this post, hang it on the fridge, and check things off as I get ‘em done.

Here’s another good list I found on Pinterest.

list from Pinterestsource

Happy Checking your list off ya’ll!

Fun Four Survey

I’ve had a very productive day.  I don’t have a lot to show for it yet but I’m getting there.  I did a lot of house and yard work and am well on my way to having the Christmas decorations up. 

I also scanned a bazillion of my mother’s pictures.  I have a gazillion left but I’m not letting it stop me.  My goal is to have them all scanned by January 1.

Here’s a good one of my beautiful mom:

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And check this one out of me and my sister Rosa and grandmother.  I think we were at Busch Gardens in Tampa.  I can just make our the A for Anheuser Busch over on the right of the picture.

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I’m on a mission this year and am retiring all the Santa Claus’ and other secular decorations that I have.  The other year our pastor asked if an alien landed and came to our home, would they correctly understand what this season is all about.  Ever since that sermon, I’ve wanted to get rid of all the fru fru and aim for a peaceful and joyful atmosphere in our home.  I still have a lot of cherished items so it will be interesting to see how it all turns out.

Just for fun I thought I’d do this Four Survey.

Happy Day!

 

Four names that people call me other than my real name:

  1. Missy
  2. Mom
  3. Grandmother
  4. Sis

Four jobs I’ve had:

  1. Waitress at Cracker Barrel
  2. School Bus Driver
  3. Purchasing associate for a medical / surgical distributor
  4. Shoe department manager

Four movies I’ve watched more than once:

  1. Hunger Games
  2. Green Card (watched this yesterday and I LOVE it!)
  3. French Kiss
  4. Titanic

Four books I’d recommend:

  1. A Prayer for Owen Meany
  2. The Book Thief
  3. The Aviator’s Wife
  4. The Glass Castle

Four places I’ve lived

  1. Lake Wales, Florida
  2. Wise, Virginia
  3. Greensboro, NC
  4. Charlotte, NC

Four places I’ve visited:

  1. Yellowstone
  2. The Grand Canyon
  3. Mt. Rushmore
  4. Las Vegas

Four places I’d rather be right now:

  1. On vacation running a cool half marathon in a fun city
  2. In the British Virgin Islands on a yacht with Ron, my sis and her husband the captain
  3. On a cruise to Alaska with an excursion to see the Northern Lights
  4. Touring Italy

Four things I prefer not to eat:

  1. Liver pate
  2. Meat
  3. Delicata squash
  4. mushy apples

Four of my favorite foods:

  1. Mexican!  nachos, burritos, everything
  2. Watermelon
  3. Pizza
  4. Bagels

Four TV shows I watch:

  1. Dancing With the Stars
  2. Survivor
  3. Modern Family
  4. The Pioneer Woman

Four things I’m looking forward to this year:

  1. Meeting Daphne, our first granddaughter
  2. Running faster
  3. Maybe going to California on vacation
  4. Having a small garden this summer

Four things I’m always saying:

  1. Let’s go Lily!
  2. Did anyone feed the dogs?
  3. What’s everyone want for dinner?
  4. My legs are sore.

Four people I tag to answer these questions:

  1. Connie M.
  2. Robin Thomas
  3. Kim Turner
  4. and You! Smile