Monday, February 4, 2013

Moving It


So like a lot of people, I have a hard time finding the motivation to work out consistently.  Whenever I start a new thing, I'm pumped about it- like, I'm a runner!  This is my life now!  I'm gonna be the kind of person who needs a good jog when they're stressed!- but it tends to peter out when laziness prevails. I've noticed that the "this is my new life" mentality when I try something different is something that's pervasive in almost all areas for me.  I tried smoking hookah for the first time the other night and I liked it, so automatically I was mentally like oh shit, I have to get a hookah now, I'm gonna smoke it while I watch tv at home and some of my friends are gonna think it's kind of weird but it's just my thing, whatever...but then like so much hookah smoke, the dream dissipated when we were done and I realized I wasn't all that interested.

I started working on running a couple of months ago with eventually doing a 5K in mind, so I've been using a Couch to 5K app on my phone (this one) to gradually work my way up.  It's taking waaay longer than the 8 weeks it suggests, because of my inconsistency as far as gym visits and general physical weakness.  I have a love-hate relationship with it- in the beginning it was muuuuurder, but somehow I got myself to keep working at it and feeling progress was encouraging and even a little addictive.  But now I've been unable to run for longer intervals of time without feeling like I'm legit dying, like going to throw up and die and then faint after I'm dead, so I'm frustrated and finding excuses not to try.  Plus I found out you can't wear headphones during a 5K- are you fucking kidding me?  No distraction from my heaving breath, no Beyonce and picturing myself dancing with my friends, just focusing on how apeshit my butt is bouncing right now?  I might be out of the 5K thing.  And without that to motivate me, I'm not sure I see myself keeping up running- trying not to mentally throw in the towel, but real talk.

So what do you guys do?  I'm not necessarily looking to lose weight but being active makes me feel good- at least afterward, and if I can find something that I don't hate while I'm doing it, mazel.  My brother and his girlfriend got me a Blu Ray player that's hooked up to Netflix, Amazon, Hulu Plus and YouTube so I'm especially curious about any videos that you work out along to online, yoga in particular.  But there is something about being at the gym that keeps me from stopping 5 minutes in because I'm bored or it's too hard so if you have any suggestions that are more oriented in that direction,  routines, classes you like, etc, I'd love to hear them too.  Help me balance out all the cheese I eat!

Thursday, January 17, 2013

xojane!


A couple weeks ago I submitted a few things I wrote to a website I really like, and it turns out that the feeling was mutual!  I signed a writer's agreement and the whole shabang earlier this week but I wasn't sure when the article would be going up, so I got a little thrill when I was scrolling around on my phone between clients today and me and my scrubby pajama top showed up.  It's really been fun so far interacting with people in the comments and I feel really good about the whole thing. I'll have another post popping up there in the future as well and I plan to keep submitting things if they come to me so hopefully I'll be around there every once in a while, spreading knowledge and seeking validation (let's be real, I'm not writing this shit in my diary for a reason.)  You can check it out here if you like.


Sunday, January 6, 2013

Wishes Do Come True

So, there was this one time I had an admirer who lived in my apartment building.  He slipped a Cinderella card under my door and we lived happily ever after.

NOT, he totally weirded me out and I spent a bunch of nights double checking my locks and yanking back my shower curtain afraid to find him there.  You can here me elaborate on this story as well as some of my online dating history (I'm a lucky lady) by listening to this week's episode of Will and Bobby Know Everything!  Click here to check out my dulcet tones.


Friday, January 4, 2013

Hey Whoa Is It Coming Down Out There?? Getting Rid of Winter Flakes

I just realized I have some important, seasonal knowledge to drop!  So many people deal with itchy scalp issues around this time of year and because of the flakes, they assume that it's dandruff and reach for the Head and Shoulders or other such products.  However, dandruff and dry scalp are two totally different things, and treating one when you actually have the other can exacerbate the problem.

Here's the deal: in my experience, far fewer people actually have dandruff than those who think they do.  It's totally understandable because the most recognizable symptoms are so similar- itchiness and flaking.  The vast majority actually just have a dry scalp, which is exactly what it sounds like.  Dandruff is actually a fungal condition and rather than small, white flakes, yellowish clumps of tissue form on the scalp.  If you're not sure which you're experiencing, don't hesitate to ask your hairdresser- seriously, I understand why you might be embarrassed but it's so not a big deal.  Everybody's got their stuff; bodies are weird.

If you've actually got dandruff, then by all means use something to treat it- preferably containing tea tree oil, which is anti-fungal and a natural exfoliant, meaning that over time it will treat the dandruff as well as gently sweep it away from your scalp.  I love and work with Paul Mitchell Tea Tree Special Shampoo, but be aware- if you color your hair, tea tree shampoos are best used right before you'll be getting color done again, as they can cause fading.  Sometimes we gotta pick our priorities, and I'd personally pick not waking up in the middle of the night scratching my scalp.

But if you've just got dry scalp, using something meant for dandruff can really work against you- it will clear away flakes but also dry your skin further, only making things worse.  Most people don't realize this and create a cycle where they have a dry scalp, they try to help it but dry it out further, and on and on.  But you don't have to!  You're smart, and also you're pretty.

Here's a plan you can customize based on whether you've learned you have a dry scalp or dandruff.  It's super easy and cheap, and when done regularly (try once a week) you'll be able to ruffle your hair again without worrying about a gentle snowfall.  I actually thought to write this post because I'm doing it right now and looking damn good too.

All the steps are the same for either situation except that if you have dandruff, add a few drops of pure tea tree oil into the mix.

Find any oil you have around the house- olive oil works great, as do coconut and grapeseed oil.

Heat it up a few tablespoons of it in the microwave, just until it's warm.  It helps the oil absorb a little better but it also just feels nice and spa-y, even if it's in a thrift store coffee mug.

Bring it into the bathroom with you and over the sink, start applying it to your scalp.  I find it a little less messy to press in with a sponge brush, the kind you can get at any craft store, but your fingers work just as well.  Start at your natural part, then keep making parting parallel to that and applying the oil to them going all across your head.  When you get to the back, honestly, just do the best you can- my technique gets dicey once things are out of my field of vision but so far I've lived.

Now wrap your hair in a towel, put on a shower cap, wrap your head in saran wrap or in a target bag (I've done both) and go do your thing around the house for at least 20 minutes- it could really stay on forever, you could binge on a season of a tv show everyone's been telling you about! While I let mine sink in I'll be watching the new episode of American Horror Story: Asylum.

When you're tired of going to play with your hair and remembering it's full of oil, hop in the shower and shampoo a couple of times until you get your usual lather and condition your hair as normal.  I promise you that your situation will improve.

If you guys ever have any hair questions for me, please feel free!  I love to spread the gospel of good hair.  It's often easier to achieve than you think.

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

The Last 2-ish Weeks in 10-ish Pictures

First of all, haaaay guys.  Second of all, this picture is kind of gross blown up, unless you're into tattoo goop residue and sock indentations.  At my friends' shop they did a benefit for the victims of Hurricane Sandy where they set up a mostly Jersey-themed flash sheet of tattoos you could pick from, in various sizes and priced either $50 or $100, and all of the proceeds were donated.  It was totally packed so my friend Amanda and I waited for a long time, but it was totally worth it.  I went to Ray, who I'd never been tattooed by before, and he pulled out a couple extra stops with the shading and everything- Chuck, the owner, came in and started a little friendly smack-talking about how he knows these are supposed to be kind of quick, simple tattoos but he had just knocked one out of the park, and Ray was like "Oh that's how it is?!" and pulled out a couple extra colors.  I ain't mad.  They raised a ton of money, I'm not sure what the grand total is but there were 6 people working and I know Evan raised $1,050 on his own, so I'd say the whole thing was a success and I'm glad I got to be a part of it.
So it hasn't come up before but my family structure is a little unique, age-wise.  I have 2 half-sisters from my dad's previous marriage, and since my dad is a lot older than my mom, my half-sisters are a lot older than me and Will.  Karen is 23 years older than me and Lynne is 21 years older, to the day!  We share a birthday, and this year she had a big one- 5-0, baby.  Karen had the fucking genius idea to have her throw her own surprise party and it was perfect!  Lynne thought she was just hosting one of the bingo nights she and her friends have from time to time, but the doorbell just kept ringing and more and more people from her life kept pouring in.  She seemed awestruck and thrilled all night and it made me so happy to see.  Sarah was awesome and took the trip to Long Island with my parents and me and Lynne burst into tears when she saw our Dad- the whole night was just a lot of happy.  I got to meet my nephew's girlfriend, who seemed sweet, and see him for what's going to be one of the last times for a long time since he's going into the army.  Ugh, that's a whole other thing.  Also I saw my niece Audrey who's loving college, and my other nephew Robbie who seemed like he was doing great too.  Oh yeah and I sang a heinous karaoke version of "New York, New York" with my dad and got to realize that I don't really know that song and that weirdly I don't have the same vocal range as Frank Sinatra about 30 seconds in.  The perfect time to realize that.
Ryan, Jim, Joe and I headed to Hoboken to see one of Yo La Tengo's Hanukkah shows- they play each of the 8 nights, every time with an opening act and a special guest that doesn't get announced until you're there. We came into the city a little early and grabbed food and sangria at a banging tapas place before settling in at Maxwell's and finding out that Sun Ra Arkestra (didn't know them) and Fred Armisen (felt lukewarm about) were opening.  Well, that shit changed!  Sun Ra turned out to be a jazz band of mainly old men wearing spangly robes and headdresses singing about the solar system, and I was into it.  Check out Exhibit A up there for Duh.  They just seemed really psyched on what they were doing and it was infectious, plus glittery robes.  And then turns out, Fred Armisen is hilarious.  I mean I didn't have a huge aversion to begin with but I couldn't specifically say I was a fan, and then he killed it.  He definitely knew his audience, a lot of indie-rock/music nerd based jokes, like impressions of people trying to be polite when a boring band is playing.  Then Yo La Tengo was just so good.  You could really hear a pin drop during quieter songs, they definitely spoke quietly and carried a big stick, or whatever that one dude with polio said.  Really glad I got to see it.  Oh yeah, and then right before we left Fred Armisen grabbed my arm when I was on my way to the bathroom, and when I turned around he went from smiley to smiley-but-confused, and I was totally taken aback but quickly knew this was a mistaken identity thing so I just kept it moving.  Me moving was also related to panic stemming from a famous person touching me- I lose my mind in the presence of anyone I know from the teevee.  

I can't really summarize this time in my life without mentioning that I have been just annihilating any food that crosses my path, seemingly regardless of whether I really like it that much or not.  I mean those Pretzel Crisps up there I liked MUCH- one of my coworker's relative's works for the company and brought in a huge bag that I shit you not had about 20 bags of different flavored crisps in it, and the back room of the salon became a serious taste testing war zone.  Even though it wasn't pretty and they were about 80% of my food intake that day, that at least makes sense because I love crunchy, salty snacks.  But what the fuck is up with the chocolates I'm eating?  We all keep getting boxes of chocolate from clients for the holidays which is sooo nice but not necessarily my bag, and yet I'm totally dipping in.  Also pictured above is a pastry I bought from one of my coworker's daughter's for a fundraiser, and which I ate about a quarter of on my way home from work in the car like a sticky fingered animal and the rest that's missing by cutting off multiple tiny slivers when I got home.  Good thing I'm totally confident with my body and I don't believe in denying myself pleasure within reason and as long as I exercise I'm totally fine with it, really, and yadda yadda yadda (but seriously mama, chill.)
               
This past weekend was very laid back- I walked to the bar with Sarah on Saturday night to meet up with Ryan, Will and Allie and bumped into some other acquaintances, then the next morning got Vietnamese food including some really pretty Thai iced tea. It was dreary on Sunday so I mostly parked it on the couch with Ryan to watch a bunch of episodes of Boardwalk Empire.  I was about to say that "we" made baked pasta and meatballs for Sarah to take to her family's house when she went over for dinner but that would be a dirty lie since Ryan did almost all the work- he's a much more seasoned meatballer than me so I thought it best to let him go for it.

On Monday we walked around Metuchen, which is a really cute town that I hadn't really checked out before.  We ducked into a super crammed used book store that was just a mess with piles and piles everywhere, and I sort of loved it.  Later that night we had plans to go to my parents' to watch a movie and decided to grab dinner first at a brewery nearby, which included a beer sampler and wings- you can't really tell but I am the absolute messiest wing eater with serious Sauce Face in that picture.  My face and my napkin were a disgrace, I tried to trade napkins with Ryan so the waitress wouldn't know how disgusting I am but he wasn't having it.  It was torn up, how did I even do that?
And today I hung out at my parents' house listing a few really great designer purses of my aunt's on eBay (they're here if you'd like to see, I still love Etsy but it just seemed to be more the market for them) and putzing around.  All in all, world class weekend.  And all in all, I need to go to bed because WEEKEND'S OVER, time to make the donuts.







Monday, November 26, 2012

God, Take Me Instead!!!! : My Dog Died

So you know how in my last post I said that Harley had to take a trip to the vet but that it was okay he'd be okay?  I guess he's okay in that he's in a doggie heaven, but not thaaat okay because he died.  UGGGGHHHH.  I can't even stand much I loved that little dog.  When we took him that night the vet, who we love, told us he had bladder stones and he'd need emergency surgery to remove them right away, and that after recovery he'd be just fine.  But it turned out that when the doctor started the surgery, he realized that the reason the x-ray he'd taken of the stones was blurry (he'd had to really enhance it and up contrast and all that stuff when he showed us the night before) was because there was cancer covering about 3/4 of the inside of Harley's bladder.  He called my parents to let them know and recommended that since Harley was already sedated, they let him go.  Treatment was just too risky and it would be too painful.  I really miss him- a few times in the last week I've caught myself being excited to see him when I went to my parents', or when I was there glancing at our other dog Penny and thinking it was Harley for a quick, sad second.  I do definitely take comfort in the fact that I don't think he was in much pain- there were a few things that seemed off but even on the last day, when we took him to the vet, I was playing with him and he was snorting and flailing around and wagging his tail and generally going nuts the way he always would.  I'm grateful that we stopped it before anything really started.

As is customary, I made a short slideshow of pictures of him set to a karaoke version of "You're Simply the Best" by Tina Turner.  As is also customary, I didn't know how to save or send it so I had to just take a video of it.  Enjoy this one on Harley.
video

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

:( / :)

With Thanksgiving coming up, I recognize that I've got a lot to be thankful for but the last 5 days were total bullshit.  Ughhhh.  I took a picture of myself before I went for a walk to visit Evan at the tattoo shop during a calm spot on Sunday, which I planned to scrap because I look pissy, but I guess it pretty much sums it up.

There's a silver lining to the cloudy things that went on: my parents got in a scary car accident but didn't get hurt, I got a worrying call from my dad and my car stalled out simultaneously (and I had to sit in a really busy intersection for 2 hours while people honked at me, and for a surprising moment I lost it and yelled that one especially bad curse word out the window) but I didn't get rear-ended, our beloved Harley boy had to have a scary trip to the vet but he's going to be ok.  But seriously, way to kick me in the nuts this weekend, Life.  I'm exhausted.

HOWEVER: Will and I rallied the way we always do when the shit gets rough, Ryan took care of my dad by picking him up when I couldn't and then Ryan's dad took care of car stuff for me, my friends kept me upbeat and feeling like they had their eyes on me with texts, when I left my parents house tonight they were sitting in their matching recliners holding hands, I'm drinking a glass of red wine in bed with a kitty at my feet, and I'm making plans with Mike to walk to a hotel bar tomorrow night and have Thanksgiving Eve drinks.  Silver linings all over the place; fuck clouds.

But I'm still going to bed before a piano falls on my head or something.