Intimate on the I-91

I’m tired. I’ve only had two hours of sleep. I danced until 4am. I watched the sun rise. I trekked around in wet grass in my pajamas. I found my bed when people were getting up.

And yet here I am, in a car full of people that I don’t know very well, but I’ve become quite fond of. I’m the driver and we’re speeding down the I-91. It’s hot, and we’re all tired, and in all fairness, we’re hungover. We’re following a car of people that are guiding us toward a promise of a swimming pool and relaxation. It’s a long drive. Thanks to an upgraded car rental, we’re driving the Hot Passat and we’re listening to CBC Radio 2, which is suggested after listening to terrible R&B from the 90’s. The car is packed with luggage and remnants from the previous day’s wedding, along with my four companions.

Vampire Weekend’s Unbelievers comes on the radio and one of my car mates asks if I will turn it up. I oblige; I also like the song. He hasn’t said much the whole weekend, but he’s singing loud enough that I can hear him from the front. I quietly join. It’s not long before all five of us are singing in some way or another. I can’t help but think in a couple of hours this will all be over. One of us will have to go back to London; one of us is moving to Turkey; one of is returning to Haida Gwaii; only myself and another are going home to Vancouver. I will likely never have these people together in my car again, so I smile and enjoy the moment.

It is a song that will play over and over in my head for weeks to come. Of all the songs, this is the song that defines my summer. It’s unexpected in a time of Daft Punk’s Get Lucky and Robin Thicke’s Blurred Lines. There is nothing about the moment that I would change, it’s perfect for everything that it is.

Reckless Ideas

What would you do if you didn’t need anyone’s approval? What would you do with your life if you weren’t afraid of hurting anyone or letting anyone down? What would you do? Who would you go after? What chances would you take? Where would you go?

I was asked those questions yesterday. I’m not going to share how I answered, but I can honestly say that those questions are consuming me right now. 

Bucket Lists and Resolutions

Hot damn 2012 went by way too fast. What an incredible year.

Stuff I did in 2012:

  • Husband, sister, and I took ourselves on the spring break that we didn’t have growing up. We spent seven days in Florida – two at Universal Studios, and the rest at Disneyworld. That trip fucking rocked.
  • I went on my first roller coaster, ever, while I was in Florida. Cried. Screamed. Gave my husband and sister a panic attack in mid air.
  • Went cottaging with my What’s for Lunch BC partner and friends. So. Much. Fun.
  • I went white water rafting.
  • Co-hosted one hell of a bachelorette party with a life-sized naked Ryan Kesler poster. Marissa, you’re welcome.
  • I registered for school.
  • I went to awesome concerts.
  • I saw Jupiter and Saturn through my very own telescope. AMAZING.
  • Again, this year I met the most incredible people and my heart is so thankful for all of you.
  • I survived three months of bachelorettehood. I’ll have to do it again in 2013, which I always hate, but always manage to live through.

I think 2013 will be less about having fun, and more about getting stuff accomplished. My mantra for 2013 is: Don’t fucking procrastinate. It’s on one of my coffee mugs, so you know it’s serious. So here goes the Bucket List and the Resolutions for a happy, healthy, and productive 2013:

  1. Do well in school. Starting January 8th I’ll be a part-time student. I’m scared. I’m nervous. I’m ready.
  2. Continue writing and tweeting for WFLBC.
  3. Renovate the bathrooms. We’ve had all the materials for over a year, we just need to start.
  4. Run 10km a week. This may seem like a small amount, but I am laughably slow.
  5. Continue with the Monday evening tradition that has become family dinner with my mom and sister.
  6. Read a book a month for pleasure. Again, no small feat as I’ll be working full time and attending classes 12 hours a week, and then homework.
  7. Go sailing. It’s been years since I was on a boat and I REALLY MISS IT.
  8. Use my yacht club membership. If anything, it’s an excellent place to network and eat lunch.
  9. Try yoga and meditation.
  10. Pay attention to what I am eating- where it comes from, sustainability, GMO free… easier said than done. I’m about to become stupidly busy.
  11. Put $5,000 into savings on top of what is already being saved.
  12. Volunteer my time for an organization dedicated to elevating girls in the world.
  13.  Sing in public. Maybe Rodyltin has a chance after all.
  14. Generally just be a rockstar.
  15. Solidify my love of all things space related with a tattoo.
  16. Be free. Enjoy life. Keep laughing.
  17. Take every opportunity to stare at the stars.
  18. Visit one far-away Twitter friend.
  19. Let go of a couple of vices. Those who know, know.  I think they are bringing me down and preventing me from reaching my potential.
  20. Eat more spinach.

There you have it. I would greatly appreciate if all two of you would check in every now and then and ask how this list is going. I’m more likely to get it done if I have someone to hold me accountable. What are your goals and aspirations for 2013? What did you accomplish last year?

Today is a perfect day to start working on my fitness goals. Again.

Screw New Years Resolutions. Did you know that you can start again any day of the year that you want? I start and stop my fitness goals the way some people flip through channels on TV.  I don’t usually feel bad about this. I fall off the wagon, and I start again. I won an award for perseverance many years ago. I will persevere, and so should you. Just start again, and again, and again until it finally sticks.

Last year I was so motivated to look good in my bikinis for the summer. In February I was soft and squishy and underwhelmed with the way I looked in and out of my clothes. I was motivated to look and feel my best at 25 years old. I went to the gym, I started running, and I made long-term changes to my diet that are now just part of me. I was excited. I wasn’t perfect, but I wore my bikinis last summer and I wasn’t the worst looking girl at the beach or even on television. I mean, have you seen Snooki in a bikini?

But here I am, soft and squishy again. I feel miserable and horribly unmotivated to change anything. Getting back in to shape feels like a chore this time around, but I’m going to do it. Even if I have to treat it as a chore, it’s something that has to be done.

By now the crash dieters and NYE resolvers have abandoned the gym. I’ve started running again, albeit a lot more slowly than last year. And today I opened my nutrition and calorie counter and entered what I’ve consumed so far and what I intend to consume today. I’ll update it again before bed for true accuracy. Right now I have to fit dinner into 300 calories, so I may have to ditch one or two of those chocolate chip cookies that I intended for a snack so that I can have more of a meaningful dinner tonight. Except that today is National Pie Day and I have some blueberry pie in the freezer… pie for dinner? According to Every Day Health, a piece of blueberry pie comes in at 290 calories. Ten extra calories to work with, YESSSSSSS. Let’s just say I have to start somewhere and I won’t be eating pie for dinner very often.

To be clear, there is a calorie target that I attempt to reach/stay under on a daily basis. I tend to screen foods and stay away from foods that have a majority of calories from fat, lots of carbs from sugar, and anything with a lot of sodium. I don’t eat processed/pre-packaged/prepared foods anyway. I eat a lot of fruit and fresh vegetables and I aim for 18-25 grams of fibre per day. The average American diet allows for 1500-2000 calories a day and that number of calories is not meant to be for everyone. Don’t expect that you can consume that much. You can offset it with exercise, but not entirely. You will never be able to out-exercise a poor diet.

I don’t know how much I weigh. I would estimate that I am 125 lbs. Yes that is a normal, healthy weight for a female my age and height. I’m not in this to lose weight, I’m in this to be healthy and look good. You don’t have to lose weight to achieve those things, necessarily. In fact, muscle weighs more than fat so in the end I may end up gaining a few pounds. The point is to understand what kind of calories I am eating and to get the most nutrition to fuel my changing body while I run and go to the gym. I will go to the gym and step on a scale for accuracy, and I’ll take some measurements so that I can track my physical results. There will be no pictures of me in my underwear to make comparisons.

By the way, I need a female gym partner who is hopefully not too gorgeous and maybe a little out of shape. Eventually I’ll need a running partner, too, because my current running partner will be going on maternity leave in the summer. OH! I also got a bike for Christmas and I’d love to do some bike riding…. just not up hills. Okay, I’ll stop being lazy. We can ride on a slight incline.

PS- I went for a run today. I survived. My weekly schedule is planned as follows: Monday- run. Tuesday- go to the gym. Wednesday-run. Thursday go to the gym. Friday- run. Saturday-rest. Sunday-go to the gym and meal plan for the week. Everyday- track calorie and nutrition information.

Please just snow

I just want it to snow. A lot.

Before this year I hated snow, but mostly because I was pissed off that I had to drive in it. However, now that I am a transit user, I don’t really care what the weather brings. I’m on a hospital route so my street gets ploughed, and the bus takes two major roads and voila! I’m at the office.

There is something about snow that grounds me. It dampens the noise and life seems to slow down. I love that bleak, greyness of the harbour when it is snowing. My favourite thing is walking in snow by myself. It’s a good time to reflect.

Sometimes I need forced quiet time. I’m plugged in all the time and I find it so difficult to shut off and be 100% present. Maybe it’s why I like baking and sewing because it requires my undivided attention. I try to give all my attention when I’m with my friends, but I often fail to do the same for my family.

I just want to stop what I’m doing, go outside, and be centred for a little while. I want to watch the snow with absolutely no agenda and nowhere to be. I want winter.

Here is one of my favourite images Blue Pond and Snow from Hokkaido, Japan.  What I would give to be in a kayak, paddling while it snows? I can almost feel the sleet on my face and hands. Winter is solemn, and I’m feeling that way today.