December 31, 2010

The other man in my life... Kevin!

I was just catching up on some blog reading when Kevin decided to come over to the couch and cuddle. ("Awwwwww" moment!)
I love him! And can I just say that I also love the lazy mornings during winter and summer break when I don't have to work!!?!!  Flash back to late July when we got the little bugger and I was trying to enjoy my morning blog reading...

Oh my, that is cute. He likes reading the blogs just as much as I do, I guess! And some things never change...
This was shortly after Kevin decided he was finished cuddling this morning... I'm pretty sure he still thinks he's a baby...

December 18, 2010

Bridesmaids' dresses and a theory about Bridezillas...

I know I won't be able to say it enough, but my four bridesmaids are the most beautiful women I know! Inside and out. (Corny, I know, but it's true!) They are also four very distinctly different sizes. My original plan was to pick a color and a fabric, and let the girls pick out their own style dress. I almost had Momzilla (just kidding mom!) convinced until one of the dress shop ladies told us that it would be too distracting because everyone should be looking at me, not at all the girls' different dresses.

This reminded me of when a not-so-favorite coworker of mine tried to encourage me not to have my friend Brigitte's adorable daughter be my flower girl because she'll be cuter than me. LOL. No one will be cuter than me on my wedding day!

Um, just kidding. Again. Brigitte's daughter Brooklyn is the CUTEST little girl I have ever seen (since I was her age, naturally.) But seriously, let's side track for a minute and discuss the phenomena of Bridezillas...
 (Photo Credit: Wedding Bee)

While I used to think these girls were just plain nuts, I'm actually starting to empathize with them. No, no, I'm not becoming one (yet), but I'm starting to feel the stress. And it's funny because although I'll admit that the stress partially comes from within, it's definitely magnified by others. There are a lot of instances when you need help from people. Like, you can't get things done unless you have the help of others. It's stressful having to wait on others when you want need to get things done. On the flip side, it's also stressful when you have people giving you unsolicited advice and tips. It's awkward when you don't like their ideas. And there are sometimes when you just want a break from wedding planning and certain coworkers can't take a hint. Always standing over your shoulders asking what you're looking at now and if you've done this or that yet. Ugghh. I'm thinking nurture wins the battle in this case. I think Bridezillas aren't born, they're bred. Just a thought though. I digress.

Back to dresses! (The fun stuff!) So, my girls range greatly in size (btw, Brigitte's pregnant with adorable baby #2 and will have just given birth 3 weeks prior to W-day), and my mom wants me to find one dress that will look fabulous on all of them. I fall somewhere in between all of these sizes, and I know how hard it is for me to find clothes to fit me, so this task seemed a bit daunting. But I'm always up for a challenge. So I thanked my mother and began my search.

A couple of bridal boutiques later, we ended up at David's Bridal. I was avoiding this place because I had heard some, um, constructive criticism about them. But low and behold, we found a great dress there!

(Photo Credit: David's Bridal)

It has a perfect cut to look good on all shapes and sizes- even post-pregnant tummies! The color in the picture is called Latte, and it's the perfect neutral shade. It's brown without being fugly. I'm going to add a band to it, instead of that belt. I'm still debating whether or not to go with black or champagne on that... the boys will be in black, so maybe that... oy.

But anyway, one more thing to check off the to-do list, and that always feels good! Almost as good as eating the chocolate that I'm craving right now! ;-)

Wedding Updates

Wedding Updates
Okay, time to catch up on the major checklist of wedding related items... not that anyone reading this would care, but it will kind of help keep me sane. (I hope!) So here we go...

-Venue (Walnut Grove)
-Date (June 2011)
-Wedding party

So far, it's all seemed to flow together. This is how it all went down...

I already discussed this, but once we found this particular venue and fell in love with it, they only had one Saturday up for grabs. So we grabbed it! That took care of the place and date!

Michele is the site coordinator at Walnut Grove, but all she does is coordinate the site... unlessssss you want to hire her as a day-of coordinator. Everything I've read emphasizes how much more relaxing it is for the bride and the groom to have that extra help on their wedding day. And with all the planning and craziness I have going on now, I would really like to enjoy need to be able to enjoy our special day. I know that sounded like a bridezilla moment, but I think I might be entitled to those from time to time! ;-)

Michele was helpful right from the start, and she gave us a list of preferred vendors. Lisa from I'm a Girl DJ caught my eye because of her business's name. (I'm a sucker for girl power, I guess!) Brian and I met with her at a Starbucks after work one evening, and we were sold! She was just like Michele, so friendly and welcoming. I've felt like I've known these ladies for years, Brian was super comfortable with both of them, and they just seemed like a perfect fit to have at our wedding!

This has been a little trickier. We had some engagement pictures taken back in October. I had asked a friend of a friend (who is super-into weddings) if she knew of any good photographers who worked with people on a budget. She me the name of the sweetest little girl named Mia. We met and posed with her and she was another fantastic person to work with! The only problem was that she has never actually done a full on wedding before. And that scares me a little bit. I was saying from the beginning that the photographer was the one thing I was going to splurge on. We're still waiting on the engagement pictures too, but it was about a month ago, so I think we should be getting them any day now. I think. Anyway, so we continued our search. I kept going back to Kimberlee Miller, a wonderful local photographer that both Michele AND Lisa recommended. Her pictures on her website are absolutely beautiful. I was a bit worried about cost though. But we met with her and one of her associates. It turns out Kimberlee is already booked for our day, but her associate Danna (who is also amazingly talented) is free. And they offer a special rate for Walnut Grove. Done and done.

This was another tough one for me. Even though the ceremony is like, the shortest part of the whole she-bang, it's also the most important! It's the reason we're all there in the first place, right? So I thought it was really important for us to find an officiant that really got us and who we are. There were 2 officiants that had been recommended to me by friends and other vendors, and they sounded perfect! They meet with the couple several times prior to the wedding. They get to know you, they make your ceremony personal. But they were both booked. Darn! The first snag we hit this whole time! So then we went to the next person Michele recommended. He was this sweet little older man, very nice. But very generic. I didn't feel like he was going to make our ceremony personal one bit. Plus he kept calling us Tristan and Ryan. Oh, and he charged $500. Yeah. Not happening. This part was starting to stress me out a bit. Then I remembered that my aunt had mentioned that my cousin (more specifically my cousin's wife) had officiated for her friends' wedding... cha-ching! So I researched some pretty vows and readings, decided that I am creative enough to put together a kick-ass ceremony, and then I asked my cousin if she wanted to officiate! And she was so excited I asked her! So that's one more thing to check off, and another awesome woman to help make our wedding dreams come true!

This part has been fun! The ironic thing about me and Brian is that he has more female friends than guy friends, and I have more guy friends than girl friends! But there were three people that I always knew for sure I would want standing up in my wedding. Of course, my brother Jeff. (There's one boy for Brian!) I always knew I would want my best friend Alexis to be my Maid of Honor. We've been friends since we played little league softball together in eighth grade. Then we played in high school and even college together! We've been friends for the last 14 years! The dynamic of our friendship has changed throughout the years, but she has always been there for me and I love her. My other "must have" is my friend Brigitte that I met my first year studying Kinesiology at CSUN. We were Bio lab partners. Although, I haven't known her as long as I've known Alexis, she quickly became one of my best friends. In fact, I owe a lot of who I am today- the girl Brian fell in love with- to Brigitte. She really got me out of my shell and we had all kinds of adventures together, from sending secret admirer gifts to our favorite professor to surfing and kayaking! Oh, such good times! Next on my list of girls, but certainly not least, I wanted Brian's sister Melissa to be in our wedding party. I've always wanted a sister and I'm so excited it's going to be her! She lives in Idaho, but I had the pleasure of meeting her at her wedding back in August, and she is just the coolest! She's so funny and easy to talk to. I wish she lived closer so we could hang out more.

Brian's boys already included Jeff, but he also knew he wanted to ask his friend Sean to be his best friend. They've been friends since high school, and Sean is Brian's best friend! Brian also asked our friend Kevin. Brian's known Kevin since high school, Jeff and Kevin played football together, and I've actually known Kevin for the last 4 or 5 years now. I though he was the perfect choice! For a while, we were just sticking with our 3 friends on each side, but lately, we've been spending a lot of time with Kevin and his girlfriend of four years Rachael. I had met her before, but didn't know her very well. Well it turns out that she is the sweetest girl, and someone that you can tell is just a good quality person. We've been spending so much time with them lately, and I've been getting to know her so well, that I knew I wanted her to be a part of our big day too! There's a fourth guy that Brian and I both knew we wanted as well. We actually were both thinking of him. But Brian hasn't actually asked him yet, so on the extremely off chance anyone will find this blog, I'm not going to post his name just yet. But he is also friends with Jeff and Kevin, so I think the whole party will be perfect!

I'm so excited!!!

November 12, 2010

Wedding in a Walnut Grove

When Brian first asked me to marry him, I was so excited about planning! I couldn't wait to get started. But it turns out that as soon as people find out you're engaged, they start asking bombard you with questions... What's your color? Did you pick out a dress yet? Where's your wedding? What flowers are you using? Did you pick a date yet?

It was never ending! And then it started to overwhelm me because I started trying to plan everything all at once. Turns out that is next to impossible. So I decided, first things first! We have to find a venue, and then maybe the rest will fall into place.

We started out just touring some local hotels. But I didn't really like how like, EVERYONE could see your wedding. So then we began to look at more specialized locations. I knew I wanted to be outside during the summer. I thought I had a pretty good idea of what I wanted. Until I started researching it. Weddings by the beach are really pretty and super easy to decorate, but my hair would end up looking absolutely hideous with the ocean mist. I started thinking that a barn wedding would be totally awesome and still somewhat unique. But there aren't that many barns in the LA area. Next, we were on to garden-like settings.

We toured 3 places in all, and it was actually the 2nd one that we all really liked. (And by "we," I mean, me, Brian, my parents, and Brian's parents! That's a serious crowd to please!) The ceremony takes place in a walnut grove and the reception is right next to the ceremony site. It has a fireplace and a huge dance floor, and just enough rustic charm to make it absolutely fantastic in my book. The coordinator there is Michele and she's really cool too. We're even hiring her as our day-of coordinator. 
Walnut Grove at night

Like I said, it was the 2nd place out of 3 that we looked at. We were trying to be realistic and make sure it was definitely the right place for us. By the time I called Michele to tell her we were VERY interested, there weren't any more Saturdays left for the summer of 2011. OH NO!!! But there was one Saturday that a couple hadn't put a deposit down on yet. She was waiting to hear back from them. I got an email from her a few days later saying that that particular date opened up! So we killed 2 birds with one stone- we got a venue and a date. 

I was pretty sure that things would started falling into place... not so much! There has still been a TON of decisions to make, people to interview, research to do, questions to ask, and money to be paid! 

November 7, 2010

Game on!

Whoa, I didn't realize it had been such a long time since I posted last! And boy,oh boy, has a lot happened since! I mean, it's mostly been wedding planning, but it seems like A LOT to me! Let's see, we've secured a date, a venue, a caterer, and a DJ, and made some headway on some decorations. Oh, and I picked out and made a deposit on my dress! It's going to be awesome! But I still need to figure out some other details like, my girls' dresses, flowers, AN OFFICIANT (way more difficult than I thought it would be!), a cake, invitations... and probably a bunch of other things that I'm forgetting! 

I'll update in more details with some pictures soon, but I wanted to post something since I had some time today. 

My Head Hurts!
So about 3 weeks ago, I woke up with the craziest dizzy feeling I've ever had. The room was spinning, I couldn't walk without falling over, and I felt SUPER nauseous. It went away after a couple of minutes, but it wiped me out for the rest of the day. Since then, I've been getting dizzy spells and headaches, and it's really been annoying me. I went to the doctor and he asks, "Are you experiencing anything stressful lately?" L.O.L. Um, yes, it just so happens that I am. I explained to him all the planning I've been doing, and he suggested I make the wedding smaller or start delegating more. Oh, and take a stress class that he recommended. So I'm working on relaxing a bit more. 
At first I was kind of skeptical that it was stress related, but yesterday I was shopping with my mom for some centerpiece accents (lanterns!) and my head started hurting in a major way. And then today I was organizing a notebook for all of my paper work and receipts, and I started to feel a tad bit dizzy. So maybe there's something to this... eh, it's a work in progress.

More to come soon! It's getting exciting! :)

August 22, 2010

I'm engaged!!!

So I haven't been writing much on here in the last 2 weeks... work started back up so I've been pretty busy with that...

I actually have been working out though. I ordered this program called Turbo Fire which is made by the same people as the Turbo Kickboxing classes I used to teach a couple of years ago. I've been doing it about 3-4 times a week, but I'd like to kick it up to 6...  I'm trying to get into a new routine, what with work and all. And now, I might be even busier because...

Yup, that's right, tonight Brian proposed to me! So I no longer have a boyfriend... I have a FIANCE! :) 

The night started off with us taking Kevin to a movie at the park. We packed a picnic dinner for the 3 of us and arrived about and hour and a half before the movie started... just in time to pick out a good spot, get settled in, and eat dinner. At sunset- right before the movie started- Brian looked at me and told me how much he loves me and said he wanted to spend the rest of his life with me. Then he pulled out the ring and asked me to marry him! It was perfect! And of course, I said YES!!!

August 2, 2010


I think if I'm going to keep make this blog interesting, I'm going to have to start lugging a camera around with me...

Yesterday, Brian and I went on a hike with our friend Ashlee (she's actually the reason we met) and it was really cool. It was more like rock climbing than a hike and there was awesome views of the valley. It felt good to be outside working hard. I can't wait until Kevin's bigger so we can take him out on excursions like that!

I had to leave him at home this morning as well when I (finally) went for a little walk/jog. It's kind of discouraging to go for a mini jog and feel like I'm sucking air when not even 6 months ago I finished a marathon. I just keep reminding myself that I can get back there. I just need to be consistent. 

I was trying to think of what I can do once work starts again. I won't have to be there until 7:45. I will have conference period around 11:30, but I wanted to be able to come home and check on Kevin and maybe take him for little walks. There's always after work, but with August-September, running outside at 3:00 doesn't seem like the smartest idea. So it's looking like the best solution is to wake up early and workout in the morning! Then I'll also be able to spend some good quality time with Kevin before I leave. Perfect!

So these next couple of weeks before we really get started at work, I'm going to try my best to get a routine going. I'm actually looking forward to it!

July 30, 2010

My own green monster

Yesterday was a good day. I ate pretty well throughout the day (Although I did sneak 2 cookies. But they were totally worth it!) I made my own version of a green monster, and healthy smoothie idea I got from reading Angela's blog over at Oh She Glows. Remember the other day when I picked of the bottle of whey protein powder but didn't get it? There's all kinds of healthy ingredients like whey, chia seeds, and flax (just to name a few) that I'm sure make it an even healthier food option, but I'm starting slow, so all I put in mine was a couple of handfuls of spinach, a banana, nonfat strawberry yogurt, and some vanilla soy milk. It. Was. Delicious!
Then I made the mistake of saying something about it on facebook. Some of my friends felt the need to discuss liquid diets with me... not where I was going with this. Oh well. It was good, I'm going to make it again, but it definitely will NOT be all I consume.

For dinner last night, we made a veggie pizza. Mushrooms, spinach, green peppers, and onions. Aside from the cheese, not the worst meal ever.

We also worked out. Brian has these videos from the P90X guy so we did some cardio and abs. Then we took the dog for a walk. He's still a puppy and he gets tired pretty quickly, so it was more of a leisurely walk, not a -get-your-heart-rate-up walk. Not up to my old workout standards, but it's a start.

Since I need to start prepping the dog for when I go back to work in two weeks and I need to stop making excuses, today I'm going to leave him alone for a little bit while I go for a jog. And maybe do some shopping. We're going to a Toby Keith concert tonight and I want to look cute! ;-)

July 28, 2010

Baby steps

For lunch today I had some scrambled eggs with spinach, mushrooms, and pepper jack cheese (my faaaaaaavorite!) and it was actually quite delicious!

The only problem was that I used 3 eggs and now I'm way too stuffed. 
Now, I know there are several things I could have done to make this little meal even more healthy. Like, lose the egg yolks. Or leave out the cheese. But baby steps, my friends, baby steps.

Brian is taking Kevin to his parents' house tonight, so I'm off the hook for cooking. I'll probably head over to my parents and partake in some of their cooking! :)

July 27, 2010

Let the healthy eating begin!

Today is the start of a beautiful relationship... with food. I've always liked loved food. This might sound horrible, but when I was like in middle school, I used wish that I could be anorexic because I've always known that I enjoyed food way too much. It's not usually a problem because I work out, but lately Brian and I have been going out on dates and have embarked in our on-going search for the perfect crepe and the best clam chowder. I know. I'm the epitome of health.

But today is a new day. I'm jumping on board the healthy-organic-gluten-free-whole-wheat-flax-eating-Omega-3 bandwagon. Okay, maybe not quite. I did pick up a bottle of chocolate whey protein. Like, held it in my hand. But then I put it back down. I haven't been fully converted yet, I guess, 

I did, however, get some peaches, bananas, cottage cheese, vanilla soy milk, corn, asparagus, chicken, eggs, carrots, hummus... good stuff like that.

I think tonight's dinner was definitely a step in the right direction. We had grilled chicken that I marinated in some Baja Chipotle marinade. Along with the chicken, we Brian grilled some ears of corn, zucchini, and asparagus, and I made some rice as a side dish.

I know that if I want to be a "real" blogger, I should've taken pictures, but I was hungry and excited. And I didn't want Brian to think I was crazy. Maybe next time. 

I had Brian go through a cook book that I bought a couple of weeks ago and mark all of the recipes he was interested in. Tomorrow I'm going to take a look at his selections and get going from there. I'm pleased with how tonight's dinner turned out, so I really think this could be the start of something great!

Let's do this

I've always been an athlete. I love getting dirty. I love sweating. I love feeling my muscles working. My mom is constantly telling me to be a lady. I recently got into the best shape of my life.

October 2009- I did my first triathlon... it was an awesome experience!

December 2009- I finished first in my age group in a 5k!

February 2010- I ran my first half-marathon!

March 2010- I ran the LA Marathon!

Now it's been a couple of months and I haven't done any races or really worked out at all other than a couple of pick up soccer games. I feel flabby and slow... and I pretty much despise how I feel. Every new athletic experience I've ever had has always been positive and beneficial to my body and mind, and it's time to get those endorphins back. I want to try everything I possibly can and be physically ready for each challenge that awaits me.

I want to document my achievements here in order to hold me accountable and keep me motivated. I also have a lot of female friends and acquaintances that complain about their own weight and/or health, so I hope that what I discover for myself can also help them. So here we go!