Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Photo Update

Whew, getting engaged is busy business. I don't feel like we've quit moving since Saturday night when Dustin popped the question!!! We haven't even posed for pictures yet, but we'll probably do that on Thanksgiving Day.

Until we take our just-after-engagement photos, random shots from our night tonight will have to count (and also I am far too tired to write a real post, unless you count the recount of the engagement story at our wedding blog).

Sunday, November 23, 2008

So, Guess What?

Dustin and I are engaged!!!!

After I unwittingly foiled his plan A this afternoon, he took me the university where we met, to the ampitheater where we had a memorable picnic date. He pulled out a Norton edition of Shakespeare, in which he'd stashed a ring box.

And of course, I cried. And said 'yes.'

We're getting married!!!

(And of course I'm keeping a wedding blog; I've had it locked until Dustin asked. :o) Keep up with us at here).

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Road Trippin'

Okay, the paper is almost done, the novel is being read, and all I have left to do this week is turn in said paper and teach said novel. Friday morning almost here! Travel day. I get to go home to my family, to my boyfriend, to a beautifully brined Turkey and delicious stuffing. Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday, especially when I haven't seen my boyfriend in a little over a month, and my parents and brother in over three!

The downside? The drive. Oxford is about 8 hours (480-something miles) away from Augusta, and I have to go through both Birmingham and Atlanta. Pretty much the rest of the way is farmland.

But I cope. I've got my road trip music (satellite radio is the *best!*), I'll have my cats in the front seat next to me (in their carrier), I'll be wearing comfy road clothes, gas is back down to the $2 range across the southeast, and I've got a few quarters saved for a diet coke.

One problem. Road food. I'm pretty good about not stopping for fast food. The fact that I try to hit the road before 7 helps curb that temptation a lot! By the time I get to Birmingham, it's still to early for lunch, and when I hit Atlanta, I've only got two hours before Augusta, so I might as well wait for the meal Moms cooked for me. But here's my downfall: when I stop for gas (I drive a Japanese economy car, so I only have to stop 2 or 3 times--I can get to Augusta on just a little more than a tank), but at each stop, I tend to buy chips, a candy bar, maybe an ice cream cone, and a diet soda. Whoah! That is far too many bad calories in one completely inactive day. Plus, it leaves me feeling more groggy than driving past 8 hours of farmland does!

So what do I pack? What do you guys rely on for healthy, energizing road food?

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Note to Self

This is not your time of year. Usually. This year, things will be are already different.

Remember where you were last year? Feeling a bit miserable? Looking at your body in the mornings and not knowing admitting how it got that way? Guess what? That's not you anymore. You educated yourself, you put yourself into a great network of bloggers, and your family more than supports you. You're focusing on your health this year, on your mind. You've lost almost 30 pounds this year. You've dropped a pant size and are dropping another right this very moment. Your clothes fit better and you look even sexier than you did last year. You feel good in the mornings.

Last year you were worried about getting into grad school, this year, you're in, and in the program you wanted, no less! Now all you've got to worry about for now is getting the last 5 or 6 pages of that paper done (and reading a novel or two...). Last year, your doctor told you she was worried about your health. When you see her this year, she'll notice your progress and congratulate her. You'll thank her for being so forward with you while at the same time, not making you feel like a failure.

Last year, you would have used your stress as an excuse to eat unhealthy foods. But not this year. This year, you're going to avoid fast food--even Subway!--when you get tired and stressed. Food is not a solution. Bad food may taste good, but it will not write your paper. Nor will it teach your classes. Bad food will make you feel, well, badly. Cut up those veggies languishing in your fridge. Drink that water that's been sitting in the cooler.

You're going home in two days. After a month, you get to hug your darlin, you get to see your family, and spend time together watching old Christmas movies on the couch. You'll get to relax and unwind, but please remember to enjoy your family more than the food you eat when you're with them. It's okay to enjoy yourself over the break, but remember that going crazy with the sweets isn't what makes the holiday memorable.

Don't feel trapped by your old end-of-term/holiday season habits. This is now your time of year.

Monday, November 17, 2008


I might need new socks for Christmas.

Paper Progress: 7.5 9.75 / 15-20 pages done, Due Thursday at 4

Friday, November 14, 2008

Absentee Blogger

Whoah, did a whole week just go by? Not sure how I missed it.

I've been holding steady at 187.0 for the past three days, so I guess I can say I'm there now. I haven't been moving past 190 all week, so I suppose it's a good thing I didn't order that pizza for dinner last night after all, huh? This means I've only got 4 pounds left for my Christmas Challenge! It's gonna be tough with my Thanksgiving trip home in about a week, but I think I can do it. I'm packing my scale and my water bottle.

I apologize for being so absent this week--I've got three 15-20 page papers all due in the next month (each one about a week apart!) so I've been trying to work on those in addition to doing my regular reading/teaching. I feel like I've gotten absolutely nothing done, and each time I try to get started, my brain refuses to cooperate. I didn't make it to the park all week, I haven't cooked as much (or when I have I've not liked what I've cooked), and I think I'm getting the cold that everyone has passed around. Even when I get plenty of sleep at night, I wake up feeling exhausted. At least I'll be going home for Thanksgiving soon, so even though I have a paper due the Monday I return, I'll at least have gotten some family time, and my favorite, cuddle time with Dustin in.

This is what my desk looks like, only with about 15 more books stacked on top:
I need strength and a ghost writer.

Friday, November 7, 2008

There's a little park I've been wanting to go to ever since I moved here nearly 4 months ago. Only, I never did. I don't even have a good reason.

Yesterday, I got the sports bra from Gracie's Gear that I won in Roni's contest a couple of weeks ago (I'll post a review as soon as I try it out once or twice more). And you know how I am--new gear makes me want to actually get off my rear end for once. So after I slept in today (ahhh, 10:30 feels good when you're still in your pajamas), I threw on some workout clothes that haven't been worn in quite some time, and drove out to the park I never thought I'd actually muster up the energy to visit.

And I found out three things: A) It's not so little, B) Walking in the chill and wind that's blowing at your face will make your nose run unstoppably, and C) Trying to run while your yoga pants are falling down is pretty impossible, and a cold wind on your plumber's crack is so not cozy.

As it turns out, the part of the park I pass on my drive to school is only about a fourth of the actual park. It's got a huge looped trail (paved) dotted with park benches and tons of little loops that branch off into smaller parts of the trail--it's great to be able to mark off smaller sections of trail you want to walk. They're doing a lot of renovating right now, and it looks like there's gonna be an ampitheater and a botanical gardens, along with tons of picnic areas and places to play frisbee with your dog. Dustin, I want Weimereiners so we can play frisbee with them. There's also a pond, with fish! (But no swimming or diving.)

There were tons of people around, walking their dogs, playing with their kids, old men in their crazy neon colored shorts and muscle shirts and sweatbands on their foreheads. And since the paths are so long and have so many points of divergence, I rarely got the feeling that I shouldn't be getting in the runners' way. I walked for about an hour and a half (not thinking that would make my thighs hurt!!) and took (according to my pedometer) 9,291 steps. That number is probably a little high though, considering that I have no idea how old this thing is, or whether or not it needs new batteries, and that my dad's work gave it to him (he works for DOE, so you know how those government gifts are...). I walked around the park two and a half times, but I have no idea what kind of distance that is.

I really enjoyed being in this park--all the trees were red and gold, and I loved all the puppers running around. I'm gonna try to make it out there 3 or 4 times a week now, I think.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Yes, We Can (and Did!)

I can't even express how happy I am right now. I've never cared so much, nor have I had a reason to care. I feel like I can breathe easily. Yes, we can! Yes, we did!

I didn't get as involved in Obama's campaign as I would have liked, but I want to thank EVERY SINGLE PERSON who contributed to Obama's plight, be it through financial donations, driving people to the polls, knocking on doors, making phone calls, making sure people knew Obama's ideas and not just rumors. Thank you.

And thank you Obama Family, for believing in us and giving us something to believe in.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008


Once every 4 years, we get the chance to participate in something huge (unless the electoral college screws it up for us...can someone explain to me why we still have an electoral college?).

So today, go vote. It might take a while, it will be a hassle to stand in line with your kid, with your to-do list glaring at you, it will mean you've got to muddle through the three-thousand political signs stuck in the ground 27 3/7ths from the polling doors. But it's worth it, is it not?

You probably already know who I've voted for (woo-hoo absentee ballot!!!) and if you don't know, but want to, you can scroll to the bottom of the page, and click on each of the pictures to take you to informative links.

If you want to know an extended explanation of why I'm voting for whom I'm voting you can read a post on my other blog. But mostly, I'm voting for women. I'm voting for my body, which I'm finally learning to love and respect, and for other women's bodies, which should be just as loved and respected. I'm voting for the women in my family (and those men, too) that weren't allowed to vote. I'm voting for my future, for children's, for the future of marginalized and stereotyped and insulted people. I'm voting so that 50 years down the road, I don't have to look back and know I made the wrong decision, that I used my vote to further establish injustice in a world that's already far too unfair.

So regardless of whether you agree with me, or even fully with the candidates, go vote. Vote with your informed conscience. Vote because you have the right to vote.

Saturday, November 1, 2008

I was born in the wrong decade...

Yesterday, a bunch of my classmates went to dinner at a really popular restaurant on the outskirts of town. I wanted to go too, so I did. But I got lost on the way there (Oxford has waaaaay too many "County Roads." Anyway, I was 15-20 minutes late, but no biggs, right? My party's already there, I'll just grab a seat with them. No. Yes, biggs. "You can sit, but you can't eat" the hostess told me. Apparently, they are so inflexible that a late order would throw them into chaos and confusion and bring upon the apocalypse. But dammit, I sat, because it took me 45 minutes to get there. Someone ordered a water for me (I wasn't going to even worry with that) and when the waitress brought it out, she gave it to the girl that asked for it, not even to me. But whatevs. I saved the $15 for my meal AND the fried catfish calories. I'm also never going there again. Those crazy people are NEVER getting my money. 

Last night was also the Halloween party, which I hadn't planned on going to. Over dinner, a few people harassed me about not going, and Dustin harassed me about going ("You're going to make friends how?") so at 9:15, I decided I should probably get a costume together. I was going to go as Rosie the Riveter, but once at Wal-Mart, I decided it would be cheaper to go with what I had in the closet, and besides, they didn't carry red
 bandanas, only blue, and blue will not do (I originally looked in the fabric section for red polka-dotted material, but alas, no go). So I bought some hair roller spong
es, and back home I go. 

This is how it turned out (and my apologies, the photos are really low-light, and the first one was taken with my cell phone). 

I'm wearing a vintage 1940's day dress (you can't see it, but there are teensy-tiny horizontal brown pinstripes across the whole dress), cheap nude hose, and brown patent heels (Mudd) with lace detailing that I've had for about a year now. Not pictured, a vintage cotton slip. Note: Although it's still a bit snug, I couldn't button this dress about a month ago.

I put my hair in Victory Rolls (tops only, I didn't have a sponge big enough for the back) using this fabulous tutorial

Yes, they're uneven a bit, and I should have angled them a bit more, but it was my first go, and I got lots of compliments and even more "you should wear your hair like that all of the time!"s.