Visit My Other Blog: The Art of Random Willynillyness!!

Saturday, April 24, 2010

Weekend Update

Okay, I have nothing to write about lately. I can't really write about work because nothing goes on there except work. We aren't doing much lately since weekends are now spent on loads of laundry and me trying to relax yet also trying to keep the house in some sort of order.

I really really really need a cleaning lady. This house is small but it is crazy to try and keep it somewhat clean when I am not here during the week. M blogs are totally suffering because I am just to lazy to keep them up anymore. I also can't cook as much as I would like to either.

Today though I am making some fried chicken because Tom requested it. It is the perfect meal on a Saturday except that the rain is coming in today and tomorrow. It should be pretty good because I make really delish fried chicken!

On Wednesday I was in Asheville at a grant seminar and when I got back home, I found Tom here. It was pretty early but he wasn't feeling well. Then he told me that someone had crashed into our driveway. Okay, it is almost impossible to do that but someone who lives up the street did. I guess she missed the right hand turn, skid into the ditch in front of the driveway and luckily hit our railroad ties and stopped because it might have been worse if she hit the huge sign in front of our house that says Cowan Valley Estates.

When Tom got home the police were here and they seemed as puzzled to how the hell this woman had missed the turn and went into the ditch. Tom said they told him her car was pretty totaled but she was not hurt. When Tom looked at the accident report, he realized the reason she probably crashed was the fact the woman is 90 freaking years old. WTF?

You know more power to you honey but damn turn in the keys if you cannot turn into your street without wiping out. Geez. Luckily, nothing worse happened and we have no damage so that's a good thing. The scary part is that on the other side of the road, very close is the river. She is lucky she ran into the ditch and not the river.

Well, that's all the excitement here. Since it is about to rain, it's time to hunker down, make dinner, watch bad TV, tweet, facebook and do the mountains of laundry! Have a great weekend.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Wordless Wednesday - Spring has Sprung!

Okay, I have not been blogging because I am just too darn busy. I also have nothing to blog about since I am working and working. Nothing happens really and the weekends are now back to doing housework and grocery shopping and trying to get organized for the next week. Sometimes I miss being home.

But Spring has come to WNC in a big way. It is so beautiful. I might descrbe my drive to work for my readers because it really is nice. I wish I could vlog the drive but it would take 45 minutes! So enjoy a little Spring. I am going to take more pictures this weekend, if it doesn't rain!



Friday, April 16, 2010

Am I a Failure?

Nutrisystem is providing me the Nutrisystem food free of charge for my weight loss journey. The compensation received will never influence the content of my posts. No other form compensation has been offered or given.

Boy this is terrible as I have been so lax about my diet and the Nutrisystem program. I am going to be completely honest here so bear with me. When I started the program it was great. The first month, I got to choose my own food and because I had been on the program years before, I knew that if I chose foods that I liked, it would work better for me. So I stocked up on burgers and pizza and chocolate and other meals I totally enjoyed.

As the weeks went by, I was sent food. Some of the food packages I received had foods I liked and some that I didn't. I continued the program and lost the 15 pounds. Weeks later, I am still holding the 15 pound weight loss that, for me, is fantastic.

The main problem is that I love food and I love to cook. I would cook for Tom and decide to eat the food I made instead of the Nutrisystem food. Again, I could have made the choice to eat the Nutrisystem food for dinner but I decided not to because I preferred my own food. I did pretty well on breakfast and lunch though. I also learned an important lesson about portion size. You don't have to eat everything put in front of you although you want to.

I learned to eat until I was full and I truly think that has helped me maintain the weight loss. There have been problems along the way besides my obvious love of food and hatred of exercise. The others have been health problems and vacations. I swear I traveled more last year when I wasn't working than when I was. Conferences and vacations do not make a good thing for a program like Nutrisystem. It just doesn't work when you travel. I can take snacks and some meals but for te most part, it's not portable although I am sure people will disagree with me. Again, because I learned to make better food choice and eat less, it has helped me maintain.

The Nutrisystem food sometimes is a big problem. If you don't like what you are eating, you will not want to eat it again. So I kept getting the same food over and over, it got old pretty quick. That's not to say that if any of you tried the program, that would happen to you because you would be able to pick the foods you like and it would help. I love their burgers and pizza and chocolate so if I had that every day, I might have been able to not get bored of the food so quickly.

Overall, I still am glad I got to do the program once again. In fact, now that I am working it is easy to stay on the program most of the day. I either eat or take a breakfast to work and eat that. I have a drawer full of Nutrisystem snacks and fruit. I take my Nutrisystem lunches. Because that is the only food available to me, I eat it and have lost any weight I might have put on during the Dominican trip. I am hoping to continue that until I run out of food. I still go home and make dinner and eat that.

So there you have it. Did I fail? Sort of. I guess I realized Nutrisystem is good for losing a few pounds unless you have the will power to complete the program. Many have done it and I bet they kept the weight off as well. It also will work if you exercise more than I did. I can make excuses all day but the bottom line is that I LOVE food. I love all the good things that are bad for you. I want to eat ice cream, Mexican food, spaghetti, ribs, burgers and all that stuff. I want my food to taste good and be appetizing.

So as I complete my Nutrisystem journey, I think I still have one shipment left, I will continue finishing off my food by using it for breakfast and lunch. I work in a town that only has a Wendy's and Subway and I have to leave campus to get it so I think that's a good thing. Plus, it's so much cheaper not eating fast food everyday! I have learned good lessons, I have lost some weight. I should lose more. Luckily, I am very comfortable in my own skin that I don't stress about it.

The Nutrisystem program works if you stick with it and follow it. I didn't all the time. But that's my issue not the program's. I met a few people online who had lost over 100 pounds on the program and I applaud them because that so rocks. The bottom line is that there is no sure fire method of weight loss that fits everyone's lifestyle. Frankly, the sure way of losing weight is eating less and better and exercising. I know this. I have known this forever. So in the end, I am not a failure just a lazy girl who just doesn't follow that advice. LOL

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Wordless Wednesday ~ I want to be a kitty

Oh the kitties are in hog heaven. They love sunning themselves in their sun room. Usually they avoid each other and stay in different parts of the house but I guess it was nice enough that day for them to put their differences aside.




Tuesday, April 13, 2010

BlogHer and Latinas in Social Media ~ Social Fiesta

I'm going!

One of the best things about blogging is that you make new friends. I have made so many friends online and they are all special. One of my favorite group of friends is the Latinas I have met while blogging. I have met so many and they are all so nice. I have been lucky to meet many of them in real life and now I can meet the rest of them at the BlogHer conference in August.

I am one of the co-hosts of the first ever Latina party at the BlogHer conference. WOO!! I am so excited. We all got together and worked with the BlogHer people to put on a really cool party: Social Fiesta!! The party is hosted by the BlogHer organization and the following Latinas:

Ana Roca Castro – premiersocialmedia.com
Silvia Martinez – mamalatinatips.com
Melanie Edwards – modernmami.com
Carolyn Gonzalez – caroincarolina.blogspot.com and theartofrandomwillynillyness.blogspot.com
Monica Vila – theonlinemom.com
Jeannette Kaplun – todobebe.com
Lisa Perez – newyorkchica.com
Lex Esparza – laprimerablog.com
Migdalia Rivera – latinaonamission.com
Mariana Perez – ridingwithnohands.com
Denisse Icaza – thecouponchica.webs.com
Daisy Sutherland – drmommyhelpsyou.com
Julie Diaz-Asper – dbestof.com

So come join us if you will be at BlogHer this year! The Social Fiesta is on Thursday, August 5th. There will be a lot of partying going on. We will have yummy Latino goodies, some delish drinks and, of course, some excellent music. You might even learn to dance a little salsa or merengue!

You’ll need to RSVP in order to attend the event. The fiesta is open to anyone attending the BlogHer conference.

Details
What: Social Fiesta at BlogHer ‘10
Date: Thursday, August 5, 2010
Time: 6 pm EST
Where: Hilton New York
On twitter: #socialfiesta

How to RSVP: Visit the Social Fiesta Eventbrite page and “register” to RSVP for the party. You’ll need your BlogHer conference ticket confirmation number.

Hope to see some new amigas and amigos there!!

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Our Dominican Adventure

Okay, I know this is totally late but I just have no time to blog anymore with the job so I am even lucky I got this posted. It's not my usually detailed post but it should suffice.I have to start out by saying that we lucked out that my job is at a school that happened to have Spring Break the same time Tom had his at the University. If not, poor Tom would have had to spend his Spring Break at home while I worked.

We had planned to actually head out to Memphis and Tunica, MS. We were going to visit Tunica to gamble. It is so close to Memphis that we would have also gone and visited Graceland and eaten some of that good Memphis BBQ. But a few days before the start of Spring Break, Tom announced he wanted to go to a beach and relax.

This was nuts of course because of the time frame an the fact that many hotels were already booked because of Spring Break. A few years ago, we traveled to Puerto Rico from a deal on cheapcaribbean.com and so we checked out the site again and found a deal to the Barcelo Cappella Beach Resort in the Dominican Republic. We had never been, it was cheap and it was available so we booked it.

We checked out Trip Advisor and the hotel had some good and bad reviews so we were a little nervous about booking it willy-nilly but that's how we roll. So we began our ritual when we travel. We booked a hotel in Atlanta to spend the night before and then we leave the car there for free. The bummer part was that Tom had been in Boston so he had to fly in, drive home and then we had to drive to Atlanta all in the same day. I also had to pack for us since he was gone the week before. Suffice it to say, it was a wild Saturday night but we arrived in Atlanta and at least got to relax and not rush to the airport he next day.

I hate the Atlanta airport. It's huge and busy but what can you do. We have to fly out of there or Charlotte when we travel internationally. Flying from Asheville is super pricey and there is never a direct flight. Luckily, we had a direct flight to D.R. The plane was jammed. And I had to fly Delta, which I am not a huge fan of since I have always had problems with them in some capacity or another.

But the flight went well, we got to see The Blindside and we were able to just chill. Can I just say that I LOVE Sandra Bullock but I don't think she deserved the Oscar for that role but oh well? Anyway, once we got to the Dominican, we got our rental car and headed out to the resort. No offense to any Dominican reading this but damn people there drive like crap! Now I have driven in Costa Rica and they drive like hell too but nothing like in the Dominican. Good Lord. I thought we would die before we got to the resort.

It was hot and muggy and we made it in one piece. The resort itself was nice but not fancy. You can tell it's older. I think a few decades ago, it must have been a big deal. But we had no issue parking the car and checking in. We were booked into a garden view room through Cheap Caribbean but they upgraded us to an Ocean View room which so rocked the house. There is nothing like getting an unexpected treat. And it was great because the other rooms were pretty far from the ocean. I vlogged about here, here and here if you haven't seen it yet.

We got in late so we had to go grab a snack at the oceanside grill since the other restaurants were closed. Now I have to say that we were not impressed with the food that first day but as time went on, the food wasn't so bad after all. We had some great steak dinners although we had to pay extra for them because they were not part of the all-inclusive plan. But the main restaurant which was buffet style had some decent food. Breakfast was always great with fresh fruit and freshly made donuts! The one thing I loved was they had a pasta bar so if there was nothing else that looked good, there was always pasta. Yummy!

There is not much to tell since the next few days consisted of us getting up and getting dressed for breakfast. Eating breakfast and then changing into swimsuits to go down to the beach. The beach was one of the best I have been to. It was tranquil and clear and there were not too many people there. I usually hate beaches and prefer pools but the water was so lovely, we ended up staying there most of the day in the water. We paid for it though because we both ended up getting sunburned. Then after beach time, we would go get dressed, eat lunch and then relax in the room. Until dinner time. What a life.

We thought about taking a tour into Santo Domingo but the tours were only at 1pm and by that time we wanted to relax and it was too damn hot to be out and about on a city tour. I wish they would have had morning tours because we definitely would have taken one. We thought about driving into town but nixed the idea because why leave such a beautiful beach.

Again, this wasn't the fanciest resort but it was quite nice for what we needed. There were a few weirdo things though. Towels seemed to be a huge issue. It was impossible to get beach towels early in the morning and poor Tom had to walk all the way across the resort to get some. Even towels in the room were at a premium, it was weird. I had to ask the housekeeper a few times before we got more than 2. In the end, we hoarded a few towels just to have extras in case we needed them.

Luckily, we could get internets access so we could keep up with our email and I was able to upload some video vlogs. The had "entertainment" but it was very willy-nilly and laughable sometimes. At night after dinner, we would go sit at the bar/entertainment area and have a drink. The seemed to have a house band that, frankly, sucked big hairy balls. I felt bad because they were trying but most of the time I couldn't recognize what they were playing. It was actually entertaining not because they were good but because those poor devils were so bad.

They also had a children's show that we were oh so lucky to catch twice (being sarcastic here). The kids looked like they were having fun but watching demented clowns dancing the hokey pokey hit close to home and reminded me of Halloween and the Demented Jester that came to my door when I was all alone. Scary!

We did go to the pool one day and another weird incident happened and I wasn't sure what to make of it. There was this really rude and horrible man we had seen around the resort for a few days. He was married to a very young girl and had 2 little kids. When we went to the pool they were there. I thought nothing of it but when Tom went to get us more drinks, the wife swam over to where I was. I saw her and thought boy she is getting awfully close. She had to have seen me from underwater so it was weird. Then she reaches over and tickles my foot. I was like WTH! She must have seen the shocked look on my face because she swam away. Now that was creepy.

After I told Tom, we deduced that maybe her and hubby were swingers or something and she might have been giving some sort of sign. That or she was just a nutcase. You just don't go around tickling people's feet. I mean, please. Since we don't "swing" we might have been out of the loop.

Anyway, we really didn't do much but swim, sun, read and relax. Oh yeah and eat. When you go to these type of resorts, that's about all you do. But I love doing nothing.

We left the resort on Friday. We had an issue with the front desk regarding a collect call Tom placed because of an issue with a credit card. He had made two calls to the US collect because BofA allows that. One call was 90 pesos and the other was 450 pesos. We asked why so much more since Tom only spoke a few minutes extra and we got attitude from hell. But in the end, we were right and it got fixed.

The flight again was uneventful and luckily we got emergency exit seats that have that little bit extra space but I was jammed in the middle seat. Boo! We watched Crazy Heart with Jeff Bridges, who did deserve the Oscar for his performance. And Colin Farrell was in and you all know ho I feel about Colin Farrell. The movie was pretty darn good.

Unfortunately, we had to fly into Atlanta airport. I dislike the Atlanta Airport. I hate that they let you off and then you have to get checked all over again because they do not have a separate International arrival area. Boo! But we got out and had to drive the 3.5 hours back home. Luckily, Tom did all the driving.

It is always nice to come home. It was great seeing my babies. It was nice sleeping in my own bed and it was just nice being home. Overall, it probably sounds like I am complaining about the resort but I am not. We actually had a wonderful time there especially since the beach area was so freaking fantastic. I am not sure I would go back there but it was good being there.

So forgive me for not posting as often as I should but I will try. More pictures at the bottom for you to look at!




















Saturday, April 3, 2010

Resort Video!!

Hello all. I did a vlog on our last full day in the resort. I decided to do a vlog as we walked over to the pool. I am warning you it's long and boring but I know some of you love long and boring. You know who you are. You will see me looking like a tanned troll today. Plus, I was sucking on a mint as I filmed this and realized I sound like the freaking Godfather. We have had a good time here. It's not fancy but it is definitely one of the nicest beaches I have ever been to. I only wished I had vlogged more of it. I wonder if Flip makes a waterproof video camera because that would have been cool. Anyhow, we get home tomorrow.

I am home right now and am tired. I will be blogging about our adventures sometime this week. Luckily, I have Easter Monday off. YAY!