Thursday, December 31, 2015

How To Start The New Year

My best advice on how to start off the new year on a good note....finish the previous year on a great note! 

Today, December 31, 2015 went something like this:

I slept in late - relaxing! 
(Snuggled in bed with Captain)

I took Captain for a 30 minute adventure walk -refreshing!
(Walk with Captain)

I did a 30 minute Fitness Blender workout (day 22 of my 8 week program) - accomplished

I took Captain for a 6km jog - energized!
(Had to get bundled up for my jog in -1°C weather)

I did another 25 minute Fitness Blender workout -workout complete!

I had a long hot shower - perfection!

...and now just waiting to officially ring in the new year!

Happy New Year!

Saturday, December 26, 2015

How To Survive The Holidays!

Regardless of all the shopping hoopla, the family chaos, and social obligations, as long as you take a moment to spend some time during the holidays with those that are most important to you, I promise you will survive! 
(Mark, Captain & myself just hanging out!)
A simple moment like this with my hubby and my pup is all it takes for me to be able to survive all the other craziness during the holiday festivities (which really are not my favorite). 

Oh, plus, it never hurts to sneak in a workout or two to keep those endorphins pumping! 
(Captain trying to join me for a workout)
What gets you through the Christmas season? 

Friday, December 25, 2015

Thursday, December 24, 2015

How Did I Do? 2015 Resolutions

So people, are you as eager as I am to find out how I did on my 2015 resolutions

Here we go:

Stop Biting Nails
Nope, not even close. I maybe did well for a week or two at a time, but regardless, I still have the ugly short, yucky nails. Maybe 2016? 

Workout On My Days Off
I'm saying CHECK! to this one. I may not workout on my days off exactly , but my workout regime improved immensely. I started off the year a bit rocky, but found Fitness Blender in March and was working out about 3 times per week. By late May, early June, I was using Fitness Blender 3-5 times per week. Sadly at the end of June I broke my foot and re-broke it again right before August long weekend so those injuries totally limited my workout ability/consistency. However, since late September I have been working out minimum 5 times per week, and am showing no signs of slowing down! 

Spend Minimum 1hr Outdoors Everyday 
CHECK! As I expected this one was pretty easy. Walking the dog, going for runs, playing at the dog park, lounging at the field, etc. were all activities I usually do anyway so I just extended my times slightly longer. Sure there were the odd days where I didn't quite succeed, but overall,  the year as a whole, I did really well! 

Pay Off Debt
Semi-check! The student loan (almost $25,000.00 including interest) is completely paid off, and the credit card is completely paid off, however I hate admitting that we still have about $8000 on the Line of Credit to pay off (we had a couple small set backs this year that slowed the process - car repairs, pet expenses, car insurance due all at the same time, trip to Alberta, trip to Sechelt, etc.)

Major fail! I didn't even try....enough said. 

Blog (Read, Write, Photography)
CHECK! I have kept the blogging up all year (with only a couple weekly hiatus'), I read almost 1 book per month this year (I was reading tons when I was working nights, but not as much lately), and I do my best to take tons of pics to help improve my blog posts. I am still hoping to get a laptop and a camera (or better cellphone camera) sometime in 2016 so hopefully that will continue to inspire my slightly creative side, and keep up with all three of these things! 

Eat Out Less 
CHECK! We spent approximately $1500 less on eating out this year compared to 2014. I know that really only averages out to about $125 per month of savings, but I'm happy with our progress and I have even higher hopes for 2016.

Coach Volleyball
Unfortunately this did not happen. I was offered the opportunity to coach back in spring-ish time which I was thrilled about, but due to lack of sleep, my crummy night schedule, and my nervousness about being a head coach instead of starting off just helping out, I passed on the opportunity and am still regretting it. Hopefully another opportunity will come in 2016 and I will have the guts to say yes!

Stop Swearing
Better but still not great. 

Overall I am most pleased with my fitness progress and debt repayment for 2015! How did your 2015 resolutions turnout? 

Saturday, December 19, 2015

Sunday Fashion Fun-Day: Workout Edition

Not much of a fashion post today simply because, as of late, I've been wearing nothing but scrubs at work and workout clothes at home, but I thought I'd share anyway!

You'd think I'd have some cozy, winterwonderland look that I've been rocking lately, but I haven't been out socially much this month, so there hasn't been much opportunity to get bundled up. 

Anyway, as far as the "fashion" is concerned, here are some examples of the workout outfits I've been living in:

(August 7, November 16, November 21, & December 9, 2015)

(October 30, November 24, November 25, & December 8, 2015) 

I wear a variety of brands (a lot of my finds are sale items at Winners) but I definitely feel that some are way more comfortable than others depending on the particular activity I'm doing. 

I'd also like to take a moment to relish in the fact that this post also kind of serves as a fitness progress update!  At the end of June 2015 I broke my foot, and then broke it again July 31, 2015. I wasn't allowed to get active again until September 25, 2015, and now here I am, two and a half months of hard work after recovering from a broken foot, and I am really starting to love and appreciate what my body is capable of. 

What's your go-to attire these days?

Friday, December 18, 2015

The Snowfall is Upon Us

Yesterday we had the first snowfall of the season. It didn't last very long but it was still totally worth going out in! 

Mr. Capt'n was very confused, yet quite intrigued (which is a little surprising considering he is 1/4 desert dog -Rhodesian ridgeback). I thought he was going to be cowering in fear the moment I took him out but he didn't seem to mind the cold one bit (he's boxer and ridgeback so both breeds give him a very short coat). He was happy to run, and jump, and chase sticks as if it were any other beautiful sunny day! I, on the other hand, was bundled tight in lots of layers: a scarf, gloves, and toque, plus many many sweaters! 

(Captain playing in the first snowfall of the season) 

How do you and your pets handle the cold? 


My women's 6s Volleyball League (the one I took over running this year) wrapped up last week and I couldn't have been more thrilled to hear all the positive feedback! It was intimidating to take on a new project but it was totally worth it to give everyone a chance to play, and everyone seemed more than happy with the flow of the season.
(Me making sure the schedule is running on time)

It also didn't hurt that my own team ended up coming in 1st place! 
(1st place winners: It's Big)
From left to right: Vanessa, me, Sarah, Barb, Jill, & Tanis)

We had a record of over 20 games won and only 1 loss! The ladies played amazing all season long, and better than that, we all had just a good fun time hanging out together every week! We had a bit of a scramble getting our full team together last minute, but I couldn't have asked for a better group of girls to end up with! :) 

I can hardly wait for the new year when we start up again!

Thursday, December 17, 2015

My First...

First kiss...

First love...nope, those are all waaay to obvious. ;)

Today I'm talking about how I purchased and tried my first protein powder. I decided to go with Vega based on the review from Samsamcherie's blog as well as from recommendations from my #FBfamily. I chose the all-in-one nutritional option, vanilla flavored. 

The more I've been working out, the more I've also become aware of my nutritional health, or lack thereof. Sure, I've impoved my portion awareness and I've also cut out a lot of processed foods, but I still haven't been getting my full fledged well rounded intake. By adding this protein powder to my daily consumption I'm finally getting my body the nutrients it's been craving for so long. 
(Vega One Nutritional Shake - please excuse my post workout sweaty face/hair) 
After my first taste here is the verdict:
I don't love it yet, but I definitely don't hate it either! I don't love the slight "chalky" texture (according to the hubby that's normal) , but the flavor is good so I think the texture will be well disguised if I blend it up in a smoothie, instead of just shaken with water. 

Do you have a favorite protein powder? 

Wednesday, December 16, 2015

Work Days

Like most average human beings, some days I looooove my job, while other days it irritates me to no end. Today, I spent about 6 out of 8hrs of my shift in the OR (pacemakers,  urology, & ortho repairs).

Today, I love my job! 
(Me in the OR at work)

What do you enjoy about your work days?

Tuesday, December 15, 2015

Sunshine Coast!

Two weekends ago the hubby and I visited the Sunshine Coast, B.C. We rented a house through VRBO and stayed about half way between Sechelt and Halfmoon Bay. We went along with two other couples-it's kind of becoming tradition that the six of us all go away together. Last year we did Tofino, this year Sechelt, and next year who knows. We also aim to do it around November 30 (our anniversary) as a little mini getaway! 

Friday Dec 4/15:
-hit the road at 7am
-caught the 920am ferry from Horseshoe Bay to Langdale
-arrived at the house around 1130am (after stopping for snacks and booze, of course) 
-settled in
-enjoyed the view 
-ate out dinner at Smittys (an oyster bar)
-played endless boardgames 
-soaked in the hot tub 
(The view)
(Settlers of Catan, small town city lights, a little too relaxed, oysters from Smittys) 

Saturday Dec 5/15:
-woke up early and did two FB workouts with a stormy but breathtaking view
-ate a hearty breakfast of eggs, bacon, fresh fruit, and mimosas
-did a mucky hike down to the beach 
-checked out the itty bitty Halfmoon Bay 
-made pasta dinner with salad and garlic bread
-endless board games again 
(Workout and hearty breakfast)
(Hike to the beach)
(Halfmoon Bay)
(Zombies boardgames,  and pasta dinner)

Sunday Dec 6/15:
-ate another hearty breakfast 
-packed up our things
-hit the road at 1030 am
-caught the 1120am ferry from Langdale to Horseshoe Bay
-made it home by 230pm
(Heading home)
The Sunshine Coast is an absolutely beautiful place! I can't wait to check it out maybe in the summer time! Have you traveled to any new destinations lately, near or far?

Monday, December 14, 2015

Cup-K Volleyball Tourney

From left to right: Brendan, Sarah, Tyler, Me, Steve, & Mark 

Three weekends ago the hubby and I put a team together and entered the Cup-K Volleyball Tournament. It was hosted by Karl, who was organizing it as his 2nd fundraiser for the Phillipines national volleyball team. 

Our team ended up coming in 1st place in the B Pool (three pools total) so we were super pleased! 

1st place in B pool

Unfortunately I didn't grab the name of the guy who was going around taking photos, but he managed to do a great job and captured these for our team:

I can never get enough volleyball, plus supporting a good cause, doesn't get much better than that! 
(Mark & I)
Have you supported any good causes lately?

Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Saint Anything by Sarah Dessen

Book #8 completed in 2015: Saint Anything by Sarah Dessen. This is the 12th book by Sarah Dessen I have read to date! Needless to say, I can't get enough of her writing! 

This novel is about a teenage girl feeling lost in the shadow of her older, reckless brother. After her brother, Peyton, is sent to jail, Sydney decides to switch schools and is left to her own devices to rediscover herself. She makes new friends (Layla and Mac), finds new interests, and slowly discovers what it's like to finally be seen. 

10 out of 10! Sure, I'm probably a little biased because I've loved so many of her novels before,  but this one, I think, takes the cake! The internal emotional/mental battles that Dessen describes are so well thought out that you can't help but relate to some degree. She describes so well, how we struggle due to others' choices and how we have to find our own voice in all matters, of the heart, or otherwise. 

Quotable Moments:
"My brother stood up. Beside me, my mom tensed, sucking in a breath. Like the way they tell you to inhale before an X-ray so they can see more, get it all." pg. 1

"-and we'd all go back down the rabbit hole of charges, lawyers, court, and sentences." pg. 10-11

"If I hated the crowds but also my own company, where did that leave me? It was the saddest I'd felt in a long time." pg. 26

"I'd done the right thing. I always did. It just would have been nice if someone had noticed." pg. 61

"With shame, like horseshoes, proximity counts." pg. 76

"I met her eyes, saying nothing but wishing she would. That somehow, in the midst of all her grief and distraction, she might be able to finally see me, if not hear the words I couldn't speak aloud." pg. 93

"'He doesn't notice much of anything when it comes to me.'
I'd never though this before, actually, but as soon as I said it, I realized it was true." pg. 107

"Finally, I was alone, just like I'd wanted. It felt so awful. Like it was just what I deserved." pg. 160

"There's no shame in trying to make stuff work, is how I see it. It's better than just accepting the broken." pg. 244

"I would have loved to know how it felt, just once, to have something fall apart and see options instead of endings." pg. 244-245

"You know, to be acknowledged without feeling targeted." pg. 248

"It's something about seeing all these people in their separate places. Like little snapshots of the whole world as it's happening, simultaneously." pg. 250

"No longer if, just when." pg. 254

"Again, I was surprised. How much else did we see differently?" pg. 260

"There, in the woods, on a late fall Thursday afternoon, it was perfect." pg. 293

"Again, she'd hit it dead-on. How the guilt felt so heavy on me, like ten of those drapes they put on you at the dentist before they take X-rays." pg. 300

"Relationships evolve, just like people do. Just because you know someone doesn't mean you know everything about them." pg. 351

"It was easier to just be mad at my mom; sympathy and empathy are complicated things." pg. 352

"You get used to people being a certain way; you depend on it. And when they surprise you, for better or worse, it can shake you to your core." pg. 407

Another amazing novel by Sarah Dessen.  I hope you take the time to read it!

Monday, December 7, 2015

Super Power

If I could have a super power I would choose time travel. 

Sure, immense strength, invisibility, the ability to fly, x-ray vision, etc. would all be well and dandy, but even still, I would choose time travel. 

I am a person who likes to be prepared...all the time. I know some people say that knowing (good or bad) fills you with anticipation and dread but for me, regardless, NOT knowing is ALWAYS worse! 

Not knowing fills me with a severe intensity that can sometimes be debilitating. I am a worse case scenario thinker so until I know the outcome, my mind is racing unforgivingly!  

However, along with the satisfaction in preparedness that time travel would bring, better yet, I could go back and reminisce and relive all the best, happiest, butterflies-in-my-tummy moments of my life.

What super power would you choose?

Saturday, December 5, 2015

Just A Glimpse!

Just a glimpse of my weekend away on the Sunshine Coast, B.C.:

(Car rides, beach life & board games)

More photos/details to come :)