Ride On

Over the weekend, I had to film myself teaching a Group Ride class to complete my Group Ride/Cardio30 certification. I haven’t been teaching Group Ride, just Cardio30, but to be certified for both my video had to be of me teaching a Ride class. I’m super comfortable teaching Cardio30 and I never get nervous before class, but for some reason this Ride video was stressing me out. Of course, any time I’m being critiqued on something I get really nervous…most people do, I think. So, just the fact that I was being videoed and have to send that video in to be certified gave me some nerves. 

Fortunately, I was just teaching to my family and one of my coworkers and they made me feel really comfortable. I needed at least 5 people in the class in order to meet the requirements for the certification. One of my coworkers who went through the Ride training with me was sweet enough to volunteer. My family filled out the rest of the class…they’re so great about helping me when I need it! I really appreciated it because I know for a fact that a Group Ride class was pretty low on Brandon and Coby’s list of things they’d like to be doing on a Sunday afternoon. They were good sports, though, and never complained.

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Before the class started, they decided to do a little synchronized family gymnastics.

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I’m not entirely sure that the bikes are approved for that sort of use, but no one cracked their head open, so I think we’re fine.

It’s such a relief to have that out of the way! I didn’t even watch the video before I sent it in because it’s sooooo awkward to watch myself on camera!! But, hey, I was there for the whole class, so I know it went alright. I’m soooo thankful for a family that supports me in the things I pursue. Dad and Mom have both been to my Cardio30 class and Brandon never complains when I play the cheesy demo videos over and over while trying to learn a routine. 

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Put A Roof On It

Fall is starting to make an appearance here in Oregon. Rain has been in the forecast all week and we had to put our gigantic tarp up again. Since the last rain storm, we’ve had trusses delivered and put sheeting on the roof (listen to me, “we,” ha! Like I’ve done any of it!)

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With a roof, it totally looks like a house! :p Brandon and I have decided that the first thing that needs to be finished on the interior is the master closet. We’re ready to move everything out of our teeny tiny basement closet and into some decent sized space!

My Fave Part Of The Remodel: Decorating!!

Now that the walls are up on our house and it’s actually starting to look like..well, a house, I’m getting excited to decorate! I don’t understand blueprints and I can’t quite envision what our home will look like when Brandon patiently describes it to me, but with the walls up and now *gasp* stairs(!) I’m starting to picture what the inside will look like. 

Pinterest has been my best friend lately… Honestly, it usually is my best friend, I just mean that I’ve transitioned from spending hours laughing hysterically to myself at all the corny pins in the “Humor” section, to drooling over the beautiful rooms and decorations in the Home Decor section. I’ve spent hours scrolling through the Home Decor and DIY sections dreaming all the projects I will do and how I will decorate. Sadly, Brandon actually has an opinion when it comes to decorating. (Aren’t husbands supposed to hand you money and say, “I don’t care. Whatever you want is fine”??? J/K I actually do appreciate that he cares about how our home looks.) The problem is that our styles are a tad bit different. Brandon is into antiques and mid-century modern and I like a contemporary/traditional look. Blending our styles is sometimes fun and sometimes challenging. It can be kinda fun to branch out and try to find ways to combine Brandon’s statue of a Japanese tanuki with our treasure chest.

photo (8)Doesn’t look so bad, right? But if you don’t know what a tanuki is, go ahead and Google it. You’ll quickly understand how much love for my hubby it took for me to display that thing in my home. It’s a piece of decor that I’m sure boys would get a kick out of, but not exactly the classy piece that I wanted to start my first home with.

Decorating is like all other aspects of marriage, it requires compromise and letting go of some of the things you wanted to allow your spouse to have the things he wants. Now, when I search Pinterest for inspiration or go shopping, I try to look at things through Brandon’s eyes as well.  I’m excited to start decorating our new home and to pick out new paint and tile, and I’m excited to see what the blend of our personal styles will look like. Don’t get me wrong, the process is frustrating sometimes. There are times when we go shopping and point out things that we like and I think, “Really, you like that??” But deep down, I like that Brandon has an opinion about our home style and that he has a creative eye. Seriously, some of the things he thinks of blow my mind. For instance, he wants to find an old pull-down map to mount above our flat screen TV. When we’re not watching TV, we can pull the map down to cover the TV. Something along the lines of this map…minus the couch …and cat. Though I’d totally take the cat! Anyway, the idea is genius! 

wall_map2Photo cred via shelteriffic.com  http://www.shelterrific.com/2008/10/28/my-ebay-find-vintage-world-map

Work Fun (Oxymoron? I Think Not)

One of the reasons I love my job is because it’s FUN! Every quarter, we have what we call Launch Week. It’s like spirit week in high school – all our classes launch new music and routines, we dress up, have contests and prizes, and celebrate being part of a community that loves making fitness fun. We have a theme for each Launch and this particular theme is Go Big. 

We started Launch Week with a huge Group Power class at the park downtown. 6 instructors and over 300 members and employees worked out together on a beautiful sunny Saturday morning. You can check out pictures here.

For my Cardio30 class on Monday, I decked out my bike.Image

My ET set up was a hit! I love dressing up for work!! Monday, I wore an 80’s workout get up, Tuesday was Hawaiian day, and yesterday..oh yesterday was awesome!! One of my coworkers wore a banana costume, another dressed as a grape (we taped balloons all over him) and I was a watermelon. Pictures are posted on our company Facebook page, here and here. It’s been so fun!!! I’m not really sure what to wear tonight; I’m running out of ideas..and funds. Plus, my brother-in-law’s birthday is today, so I’m leaving work early and I won’t even have a costume on for long. And I need to figure out another idea for my Cardio30 class tomorrow morning. Any ideas??? I want something creative and I don’t want to have to spend a lot of money. I might just use ET again. If a costume works, work it hard, right?? :p

I Always Wanted An Indoor Pool

…but I wasn’t planning on turning my whole second floor into a pool. Unfortunately, Mother Nature had other plans. Saturday evening we got a crazy thunderstorm. I was at a baby shower Saturday afternoon and it started dripping a bit, but nothing crazy. The sky was super dark though, so you could tell a storm was coming. When I left the shower (haha we got a rain shower during the baby shower), the sky was pretty dark but the party was on the opposite end of town from where we live. As I was driving home, it looked sunny on the side of town I live on. I got about a half mile from home, though, and the skies completely opened up and it started pouring. 

I pulled onto our road just behind my mother-in-law who had ran to her house to grab us some tarp (bless her heart). I ran inside just long enough to drop off my purse, change out of my flip flops into shoes that I wouldn’t face plant in while running in the rain, and grab my rain jacket. Brandon was already on the top floor struggling to divert the water from pooling on our second floor. 

Now, mind you, this is Oregon, so we knew rain was inevitable at some point during this process. We knew we had been lucky to not get rain before this point. In fact, we had bought a gigantic $150 40×60 foot tarp in case of just such an emergency. My penny pinching self gulped at spending $150 on a dang tarp, but I consoled myself with the fact that we could return it if we didn’t need to use it. Sadly, we had to use it. Brandon tore open the package and I heard my $150 go right down the drain with all that rain. No time to cry though, we had to put that sucker up quick. Fortunately, our neighbor came running over in the downpour and offered to help (bless his heart too). He had been taking a nap when his wife woke him up and said, “It’s raining and Brandon’s struggling to put the tarp up. Go help him!” That’s what every good wife is for, right? Nudging her man into action. He was a big help getting that massive tarp up, and he ran back home to get his shop vacuum for us to vacuum up the water that had pooled in the house after we got the tarp up.ImageImage

Who needs a roof?? The tarp adds a nice blue ambiance. 

I was so distracted by getting the tarp up that I didn’t realize that water had also managed to come in through our light fixtures and down the walls in our daylight basement where we live. My sweet mother-in-law put buckets under all our lights and was busy wiping up the water that was streaking down the walls. We have a light right above our bed, so we had a nice little waterfall coming down into the center of our bed. We had to wash and dry our sheets, comforter, and mattress pad. (Sidenote: I had just mopped the day before and put clean sheets on our bed a few days before that – why do I bother??) So, about 1am, when our bedding was finally dry and our leaks had stopped, we were finally able to go to bed. 

We borrowed a few fans to dry out our area rug and propped one to blow under our floor where some water leaked. 

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It was definitely an eventful weekend, cleaning up what the storm blew in, but everything’s dried out now and the building has resumed. We were fortunate to be able to get all the water mopped up pretty quick and it was warm enough that everything dried out pretty quick. This’ll make a great story in my remodel scrapbook. ;p

Kitchen Adventures

Last week, I made dinner. This is what happened…

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My grandma and I had gone to a local produce stand and bought some tasty looking corn on the cob. I’ve never actually made corn on the cob before, so naturally, I Googled it. Isn’t it great that when we don’t know something, we can just type it into a little search box and endless resources pop up?? Seriously, what did people do before Google?? Eat raw corn on the cob, probably. 

The smoke detector had to be taken down while I made the steaks to go with our corn. They were burnt well done. 

You can see why I don’t cook often. 

On the other hand, I’m pretty much a pro at baking. I had a freezer full of bananas that needed to be used up, so I decided to make blueberry banana muffins for my worker bees. I didn’t have a banana muffin recipe on hand, so I used my handy dandy All Recipes app one my iPhone to search for one. This app is awesome! I can’t even count how many great recipes I’ve found using it. I love to read the reviews on the recipes and see what other people suggest as far as substitutions and tweaks. I also love that you can “favorite” recipes you like or want to have easy access to. It’s so easy to pull up my favorite recipes to use whenever I want. I used the recipe for Banana Muffins II and just added a handful of blueberries to it. I also used brown sugar instead of white sugar like some of the reviews suggested. They were so moist and yummy!! Mmmm! They got the Grandpa-seal-of-approval, which is sayin’ somethin’ because my grandpa loves blueberry muffins. 

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My absolute favorite recipe from All Recipes is Pancakes I. I make these pancakes almost every weekend. Growing up, I always had pancakes from a bagged mix. For awhile, it was a Saturday morning tradition for Dad to whip up some pancakes and I loved it! A few weeks into our marriage, I wanted to make pancakes for Brandon for a Sunday morning breakfast, like a good little wife. I didn’t have any pancake mix, so I looked up a recipe on All Recipes. The Pancakes I recipe got rave reviews, so I gave it a shot and it’s been my go-to recipe ever since. I use applesauce instead of vegetable oil and usually either leave out the sugar or sub honey instead. I also add cinnamon and chia seeds, but other than that I stick to the recipe. 😛 They’re the perfect weekend breakfast! 

Monday Mash

This post is going to be kinda all over the place, so bear with me. hehe

Last week was my first week of teaching Cardio30, a 30-minute cardio class on a bike. I love it so far! Cycling is really a great workout. I sweat more when I’m in a cycling class than I do in any other workout. And it gives you great legs! 😉

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The second floor of our house is starting to take shape. Last week, the guys put up the floor and today, they are framing the walls. I should have two 2nd-story walls by the end of the evening! 

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Brandon and Grandpa with their heads together. Lots of planning and strategizing goes on up on that roof.

Brandon and I went up on the roof over the weekend to enjoy the view and do  some planning and dreaming. I tried to get a picture of us and capture the gorgeous view of downtown Salem in the background. Well, that didn’t work out so well..I’m not the best at taking self portraits. This was my best attempt.

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Then Brandon tried, and his attempt was a bit better.

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I came across this article on the Tia and Tamera website this morning titled Stop Changing Yourself to Please Others. I’ve struggled, as I know many people have, with a desire to change to gain acceptance from other people. I want people to approve of me and I’m crushed when it feels like someone doesn’t like me or is disappointed with me. The article addresses this and points out that when we can’t change to please other people, we feel like something must be wrong with us. But the author points out that, “rejection does not define you.” I love that line. Just because a person does not approve of me does not mean that something is wrong with me; it doesn’t even mean that something is wrong with that other person, it just means that we don’t mesh. By being myself, I attract people who are interested in me for who I am and who I genuinely connect with. Not everyone needs to like me, and I don’t need to take it personally when they don’t. Just my food for thought for the day. 🙂 I got the article in my e-mail this morning and liked what it had to say. I thought I’d share it so that we can all start our week being confident in who we are and not feeling like we have to be someone else. Love YOU because there is no one like you and you are awesome!