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Meanwhile, Back at the Ranch...



Welcome, imaginary internet friends.



Updated: 2018-03-03T03:55:57.314+10:30

 



Wedding Planning Step 1: Find A Venue

2015-05-28T18:46:30.238+09:30

As we both had time off between Christmas and New Years, we made a plan to make a plan. That is, we committed to finding and booking a wedding venue.

I of course immediately created a comprehensive spreadsheet. Adelaide is surrounded by wineries, and all of the weddings that we've been to have been at wineries. BUT The Fiance had also known someone who'd been married at the State Library. He is a qualified teacher-librarian, I am a qualified librarian and current book-buyer, it's very us.

The Mortlock Wing of the State Library looks like this:*


Pretty awesome.

We met up with the person in charge of events, who showed us a list of available dates, including Halloween weekend - our 5 year anniversary! What could be better?! And then she grabbed her pen, CROSSED OUT our perfect date, and I was a bit sad. (But I got over it.)

The ceremony and reception will both be in the building, and they handle food, drinks, tables, etc, so in one fell swoop, we were seriously on our way to planning a wedding!

*The ground level and balcony will be ours, and there's all kinds of dusty books and maps and displays around the place. No decorations required!




Sangria and mountains

2015-05-21T21:24:08.220+09:30

Obviously I am massively out of the habit of blogging, but I have important wedding stuff to tell the internet, but I have to talk about our Europe holiday first.LAST YEAR OOPS we went on a holiday to Europe. I had one week in Spain, one week in Germany, and a few days in Venice with the Fiance. Then we met up with his parents, my dad, and the international ultimate frisbee community in Lecco, Italy for the World Club Championships. Then dad and I had two weeks in Ireland.It was all awesome, but the best of all was Spain.I did most of the planning for the trip, which of course turned out to be over-planning. But the one thing I got right was the idea to have a few days in the mountains in the north of Spain. I picked out a random small town near a national park from an out-of-date guide book from the library. And off we went!We had to catch two trains and a bus to get there, but when we did Torla looked like this so we were pretty ok with that.The first night there we had a delicious 3-course meal that came with a bottle of wine. Next time we are sitting at separate tables so we each get our bottle of wine. There was an awesome thunder/lightning storm that only disrupted our meal a little bit.The next day we went to Ordesa National Park and accidentally climbed a mountain. Without any lunch.It started out nice and gentle, with lots of pretty waterfalls. Then we came out onto a valley, with flowers and cows.And then we decided that even though we'd made it to the Final Waterfall, we should continue onto the only other thing left on the signs - the Refuge. What is the Refuge? Where is it? We don't know, we just follow the signs.So we did another two hours of switchbacks across the side of the valley, until we got to here - the valley from another angle.Then we still had another hour of climbing straight up. And up. Finally finally we made it to the Refuge. Yay us! Not pictured: the awesome family with two young kids who were just champions. To be fair, they had the right gear, and food.Which reminds me, I have never loved him as much as when Fiance went into the Refuge building and came out with a Kit-Kat. I wouldn't have made it down without that chocolate.It was a very good bonding experience. We each wanted to go back at different points, but we were so proud when we got to that goddamn Refuge.Mount Perdido - the Refuge is at 2160m[...]



2014 Reading Challenge

2014-12-23T17:16:19.186+10:30

At the end of last year when I started my new library-related job, I joined Goodreads, and this year for the first time I kept track of the books I was reading as I went. I have read 61 books so far (and if you think that is a lot, I will just say that one of those books was Roald Dahl's The Twits which probably took me about 20 minutes to read). Since we are shortly going away to a beach shack where I only plan eat, sleep, swim and read for four days, this may not be the final list, but as of right now, here are the books I read in 2014:





Running update - Rose of Tralee and City to Bay 2014

2014-11-22T21:04:39.495+10:30

If nothing else, I feel like I should use this space as a way to record my running endeavours.I ran a 10k in Ireland. (Ireland! How cool is that!) I had not trained in the lead up, and in the three weeks immediately prior I was travelling around Europe, mostly on a diet of gelato, pasta, and wine. I may not have quite been in my peak physical condition, although I had done quite a bit of walking around (which, spoiler, is not the same as running ten kilometers).This is me, at the start, being extremely apprehensive about just what I had gotten myself into.That guy definitely finished before me.The race started at the wetlands, and went uphill (luckily not terribly steeply) to the top of the town, and then slightly downhill into Tralee (as in Rose of Tralee) to finish.There were kilometer markers - sometimes. It was a fun game. Surely we must have done one kilometer by now - oh hey I just did two! Surely we must have done two by now, nope you had barely done half of one when you thought that!I gave myself walk breaks after each song, but kept them short. I played leapfrog with a few people who were jogging steadily. I kind of wish I had stopped to take photos along the way, but I didn't really want to drag it out any longer than I had to. But it was a nice day, and there was nice scenery, and running people are so encouraging. There was one water break, which was situated in such a way that you turned off the main road, DOWNHILL YAY to the WATER YAY, and then realised that oh shit, now there is a steep hill to get back into the race. Of course I "sprinted" up it, the quicker to get it over with, and I am pretty sure that is why my legs were so sore the next day.And oh my god, were my legs sore. To get into our hotel for the next few days you had to go up several steps, in the door, and down several steps. It was extremely painful, as was sitting down, standing up, walking, etc.Anyway, here is me running, courtesy of my excellent running photographer (dad), who managed to be in three different places along the route. And here is me with my big-ass medal! And with my scientifically proven recovery aid. My time was about 1:11 I think, which was about my time from City to Bay last year, which you might recall is a 12k. Then I came home from Europe and ran City to Bay again, fairly slowly but with an impressive lack of letting myself take walk breaks. 1:19 I think. I would like to do sub-60 one year.[...]



Packed

2014-07-12T18:09:51.054+09:30

You learn so much about yourself when you travel.

The first thing you should know is that I am apparently a TOTAL PACKING BAD-ASS. The Fiance left over a week ago for his part of our him alone-us together-me alone holiday. He packed in about 20 minutes with no prior preparation and his bag weighed 10 kilograms. There was no way I was going to match that. For a start, I am a girl, with hair-straightening and facial product needs. And he is a fairly basic traveller, and while I would like to be, I just can't.

I started packing (if you can call it that since nothing actually went into my bag until today) about a week ago, when I dumped all the clothes that could be considered summer weather-appropriate onto the spare room bed. A few days later I culled a bunch of them. And then today when I actually started packing I dumped even more of them. And all this time I was randomly tossing other holiday-items into the spare room.

I was worried that my bag would be considered overweight by either the airlines or my body, since it is a travel backpack and - as I was assured on a recent frisbee trip when we saw a fellow teammate carrying his wife's bag as well as his own - even when we are married, The Fiance will not be carrying it for me. So yeah. Packed it, weighed it. THIRTEEN KILOS, BOOYAH, HOW BOUT THEM APPLES, ETC.

To be fair, I realised after I'd weighed it that I hadn't yet included my hair straightener, but I doubt that is going to account for the extra seven kilos I was expecting.

Other things I have discovered recently:
While every single packing advice thing you will read demands you roll your clothes, rolling clothes is actually really tiring.
I own way too many navy blue tops. I actually packed colourful tops over navy tops I like more, just so I had some extra colour variation.
My tablet can really not handle having more than one filed copied to it at a time, but hopefully I have enough sports- and Europe-related movies to get me through.
Life is super boring when you live by yourself, there is no organised frisbee, and it gets dark about thirty seconds after you get time leaving you no motivation to go for a run. Evenings are so long!

I am really not looking forward to one bajillion hours on various planes and trains. I think I am getting old and cranky. I want to BE places, and I don't even mind interesting journeys, but Europe is such a long way from Australia. I don't know if you knew that but it's true.

I have a stopover in Singapore that is just long enough and perfectly timed so as to enable me to jump on a free two-hour tour. And despite all that perfection, I don't know. I really hope I can overcome my don't-want-to-miss-my-plane urge to sit by my departure gate for seven hours.

See you when I get back!



Otherwise engaged

2014-06-01T20:00:17.029+09:30

I realised I forgot a few parts of the original engagement announcement, so let's keep talking about it!

We watched some of a country footy game on the Saturday which was really fun.
And that's the end of that part of the update.

We went to The Fiance's parents' house on the way home from our weekend away and told them. I Skyped with my parents when we got home. They all already knew it was happening! I was the only one in the dark.

I had a great time showing the ring off at work on Monday and frisbee on Wednesday. I got an especially great reaction at frisbee (and by great I mean incredibly loud and high-pitched). I've pretty much got the story down. I just alter the amount of shit I give him for being nervous, depending on my audience.

I had to give it back to get resized on Thursday, and I immediately regretted not being more sympathetic to friends who have been in the same situation. I miss it! It will be back in 5-7 days, and yes I am absolutely counting down.

Okay so he bought the ring and I think they put some of his details into their computer at the time. But then they got more details when we took it back in, so it wasn't like they couldn't have put in someone else's details instead. And then HE signed for it, and they are going to call HIM when HIS ring is ready to pick up. Is that weird? I get that it's probably just how the computer system works, but there was no acknowledgement of this at all.

We have dinner with his extended family this week, and I won't have the ring to show them. But I had to give it back at some point and I definitely need it the week after to show people. Some people at work still haven't seen it because they weren't around til I gave it back!

We get back from our trip at the end of August and I figure it will take a couple months to plan the engagement party. Which would put us at the end of October, which is our four year anniversary! It's nice when things work out. (Obviously they haven't worked out yet, because I haven't done a thing past look at pretty dresses and see if I can hire a Gumdrop car in Adelaide, but it appears as if the timing might work out and then I will be very happy.)

We put it up on Facebook today, after spending the week notifying the people we wanted to notify by some other method than stupid social media taking over our lives. I made up a newspaper article so it wouldn't seem so damn internety and put up a photo of the two of us which exemplfies us as a couple - Jony saying/doing something that I disapprove of but can't help laughing about as I tell him off.







Affianced

2014-05-26T21:00:11.548+09:30

I have exciting news - the most exciting news that this blog has ever seen... Jonathon and I are engaged!(That was the TL;DR version - the rest might be too much me recording the minute details for posterity to be of any interest to anyone else.)We have been together for just over three and a half years and we are both nearly 30. That is more than enough time for people to start asking when we will be getting married. To those people I can now say with utmost confidence: Um yeah definitely sometime.We had been planning to take a weekend away together for a long time. I think it was January when we said, we are too busy, we need to find a free weekend. And we did. In May! So in that way this was not that suspicious - we had decided on the date together. He had said he would plan it, but one or the other of us has booked trips in the past, so still no big deal.This picture does not belong here, but I just really like it.On the morning of, he let me get McDonalds for breakfast (a road trip tradition) and we drove south. Which narrowed down my guessing options by about half. We stopped for morning tea at the Mount Compass bakery. Our food was delicious, as food is that comes from a country town bakery.We then went on to Wirra Wirra winery for some wine tasting and a lovely picnic. We met an adorable puppy named Dilbert, and I think we shall name our first child after him. (No, we won't.)    After the picnic, we did another wine tasting in McLaren Vale, before heading off to our accommodation for the night.As you can see, it was kind of okay. Our room had a fireplace and a four-poster bed!Then came the most exciting part of the weekend (almost). High Society was on TV so we started it watching before we left for dinner. What a good movie! Go watch it.We had dinner at a lovely restaurant, and we discovered what Rillettes is. Kind of like pate, just so you know. Ours was duck, and quite delicious! I had ocean trout, he had kangaroo. We decided we didn't need dessert so headed off back to our fireplace.Here's where we get to the good part! We got the fire going, and as we were about to sit down in front of it with a glass of wine, he tells me he has something for me and sits me down on a couch. He makes me close my eyes while he goes to his bag, then comes back and he pulls me so I am standing and he is holding my hand. He tells me he loves me and wants to spend the rest of his life with me (awww) and he kneels down and asks me to marry him!!!I say yes (of course) (repeatedly) and am kissing and hugging him while he's still on the floor. He manages to stand up and I realise I barely saw the ring. He takes it out and puts it on my finger - while his hands were shaking so much!It's very sparkly. And then we were engaged! Like grown-up people do! And oh god, I am so happy. My cheeks are still sore from smiling, and I was fairly useless at work today what with all the daydreaming I was doing, and I sent him a mushy text message the likes of which I have never sent to anyone. We are extremely coupley in the worst/best way, and take every opportunity to drop the word fiance/e into a sentence.The wedding I imagine will be in a year from when we start planning it - and that won't be til well after we get back from our trip (oh yeah, forgot to tell you that we're going to Europe for five weeks soon). As I currently have multiple travel spreadsheets going and many guidebooks covering our kitchen table, I am not in the mood to plan anything else right now - but that didn't stop me from joining Pintrest and googling wedding dresses.  Cheers![...]



A bunch of things that shouldn't be in the same post

2014-03-29T22:51:01.796+10:30

I am doing footy tipping at work. I thought this might help me get more invested in games, which I inevitably have to watch should I like to spend a Friday or Saturday night with the boyfriend. The problem is I handed in my tips and promptly forgot who I had chosen, so um yeah.

***

I wrote an "I'm sorry your mum died and I can't be there" email this week, which sucked. We are not even thirty years old. I didn't give anyone permission to be doing that. Cancer can suck it.

***

I am going travelling later this year. We have been booking things over the past month or so and it's all coming together: a day in London, a week each in Spain and Germany, time in Venice and Lake Como and Milan, and two weeks in Ireland.

***

I have not been feeling well for the past few weeks, mentally I mean. Which makes no sense - employed, house, boyfriend, upcoming holiday. But the urge to crawl under the blankets and never speak to another human person was pretty strong. Thankfully Disney was there for me.


***

Have you seen Frozen? I love Frozen. Two princesses! Strong independent women! Awesome songs! Kristen Bell!

***

The Veronica Mars movie came out. I downloaded itunes so I could watch it. This is a really interesting time in media/fan history. The movie was funded by fans, written for fans, and released to fans in cinemas and online on the same day. It's exciting.

***

Did I tell you about the Lizzie Bennett Diaries when it happened? Online videoblogs posted biweekly, telling the story of Pride and Prejudice? It ended a year ago, and it is also an exciting piece of media history. I am not as excited about Emma Approved or The Autobiography of Jane Eyre, but I watch them regularly.

***

Television Without Pity is a website that provides recaps of tv shows, and forums, and other content. I have read recaps there for many years. I don't read the recaps for all the shows I watch, only the ones that I find are enhanced by the recaps. For those shows, I allow myself an hour to watch a show - 40 minutes for the actual watching, and 20 minutes to read. And now it's closing. And not just not adding new articles, but disappearing from the internet. It sounds trivial, but I am really interested to see the way this impacts my tv watching. For example - how many shows do I stick with just because I enjoy the recaps?

***

Got any random trivia you would like to share with the interwebs?



Triathlon Complete

2014-01-28T21:22:55.481+10:30

WE DID IT!Triathlon complete: 400m swim, 16.8k cycle, 4k run in a total time of 1:22:27, which makes me 7th in my age group.The swim: In case you were unaware, salt water tastes disgusting. And once you have swallowed it once or twice or a hundred times, it will take you the rest of the race to get the taste out of your throat. I did not do the swim properly at all. I'm not really sure what happened, I didn't panic, I just didn't feel like looking somewhat professional, I guess. So I did every stroke you can think of – proper freestyle, freestyle with my head out of the water, breast-stroke, side-stroke for a minute til I felt like an idiot. But I didn't drown, and I only finished two minutes behind Running Buddy in the swim. Happy with the result, but not the execution.According to moderately reliably sources, I had a Thank god that's overlook on my face when I emerged. Sounds plausible.I peeled off my goggles and swim cap feeling like a pro, and headed off to my first transition. The bike: I realised later (much later) that I somehow put my shirt on inside out, but that affected nothing. The transitions are both a bit of a blur, but somehow I was dressed, helmeted, and headed out on the bike.Let the record show that I overtook one (1) other competitor on the bike. If the record feels like it, it may show that I was overtaken by approximately a million other riders, but that's neither here nor there. I would like to say cheers to the guy in the Australia tri-suit who overtook both myself and Running Buddy and said that we were looking good. Thanks Aussie Tri-suit Guy!My bike (which was noticeably less, shall we say, expensive than many others there) did just fine. I hadn't really worked out how fast I could go for how long and not fall off my bike at the end of it, but I think I held a pretty good pace. Only 2:15 behind RB in the bike, so that is very good. Okay, the bike did start making a slightly worrisome clicking/clunking noise midway through the second lap, but I just had a chat to it (and didn't make it do anything alarming like changegears) and we were all good.I had no problems with the marshal, I had one leg over the bike, and was ready to put my foot down right before the line, so all went smoothly into the second transition.The run: My secret weapon is that I don't have clip-in shoes for my bike, so my bike-run transition was super quick.I'd decided socks were for chumps, but they probably also should have been for people who have shoes that haven't been tested running without them. I don't think the constant rubbing actually slowed me down any, but it certainly hurt in the post-race shower.I really really wish they had kilometre markers for the run course – or that I knew the course better. I let myself have waytoo many walk breaks, although in my defence, they were all super short ones. Turns out RB and I both had a sneaky one right before the final turn – which allowed me to “sprint” to the finish line.Obviously, we should know by now that I am unable to look joyful while exercising – unlike RB who looks cheerful in every single one of her photos. Photos, by the way, are courtesy of my new camera – and the Boyfriend, who did a great job capturing every moment of our Triumph.Then we had a chocolate milkshake. My favourite part of frisbee tournaments, 10k runs, and triathlons.[...]



Tri your hardest

2014-01-24T18:07:18.504+10:30

As soon as I started packing up my things at the end of the day today, I freaked out. I should be blissfully happy about the prospect of a long weekend, but as soon as work was over for the day, I couldn't pretend that the triathlon was off somewhere in the future. Friday afternoon means the weekend is here, which means oh crap, my triathlon is here.

I am really really not looking forward to the swim. I had a bad session last week, when we timed ourselves for the first time, although I had a better session this week. I just freak out and pull my head out of the water (sometimes for no reason that even I know), which stops any momentum I might have going. But I have decided that I have to take ten breaths before I am allowed to stop and look up, which should be about 25 metres. So I should be done with the swim by the time everyone else is done with the bike.

The bike is practically guaranteed to be my favourite event. No idea if I'll be any good at it (probably not), but I won't be in danger of drowning or feeling like I'm dying after doing two and a bit events, so I am going to love it.

I will just plod away at the run. We haven't practiced too much distance running, so I do not think I will be enjoying myself by this stage. But there will be the added incentive of, you know, being able to stop and never do this again, so that might propel me forwards somewhat.

Basically, my goals are as follows:
  • Look competent enough in the water that the lifeguard guys don't ask me if I need help.
  • Finish the swim before the next wave does. Or at least too many of the next wave.
  • Don't get told off by the transition marshals.
  • Remember to put my shirt on before my helmet.
  • Have no trouble putting up my bike.
  • Finish.
Race report to come, which will no doubt be much more cheerful than this post. Wish me luck!



Giving it a tri

2014-01-12T22:08:20.070+10:30

As I mentioned, I am doing my first triathlon in two weeks. It is the medium-sized one of the three that will be run on the day, with a 400m swim, 16.8km cycle, and 4km run.

The run I am not too worried about, but maybe I should be, as I haven't run that distance properly since November.

The swim and the ride I am slightly worried about.

I spent a lot of time in the pool as a kid, but almost none of that was spent swimming laps. I have so far done two pool sessions, and will aim for another two or three swims before the race, and while I can swim that distance, I'm not sure if I can do it all in one go, without any breaks to rest on the wall. Also there is no wall in a triathlon.

I am also worried I will panic in the water when there are lots of people around me, and/or if I am last by a lot (not an completely unreasonable assumption).

Since we went for our first long training ride, I am no longer as worried about the ride. I am worried I won't know where to go, as there might not be enough other riders around me to follow. I am worried I will do something wrong in transition and the marshal will yell at me. I am worried I won't be able to find my bike spot. I am only a little bit worried about being completely dead last, because it won't be as obvious by this stage, what with all the different races and waves.

Today we went to watch the triathlon that is before ours in a series of races. The distances were quite similar and I imagine the set-up will be almost identical. It hasn't convinced me that this is the greatest idea ever, but I do feel more comfortable now that I know what to expect.

As a result, we have the following list of things to do before the race:
  • buy a race belt that the pro-looking people use to hold their numbers - done
  • buy elastic shoelaces (no-one had non-elastic laces today) - done
  • buy a swim cap, discover you don't need it on the day as they are provided - done
  • rethink your outfit based on what everyone else was wearing. Refrain from buying new clothes - done and done for now (pending the results of our dress rehearsal)
  • consider riding and running with no socks. Reject the idea of testing it out, based on how much it would suck to get ridiculous blisters at this point - done
  • test out watch in water (it does say thirty meters)
  • try an open-water swim
  • try a swim-then-ride dress rehearsal, with transition
  • try a ride-then-run, with transition
  • Running Buddy needs to figure out to start riding with her shoes already clipped into pedals AND how to un-velcro her shoes and dismount without unclipping. Have fun with that!
And become a super champion swimmer, cyclist, and runner. Ready, go!



2014

2014-01-03T22:29:33.892+10:30

I have never been too much into New Years Resolutions, although I do love the idea of a brand new year full of possibilities, and the actual clean slate of a pretty new diary.

I have this diary, and I absolutely love it and highly recommend it. (And if OTI want to send me a year's supply of diaries, that would be just lovely.) It has everything I need - space! columns! post its! - and things I don't - travel booking section! entertaining hostess section! etc.

I didn't use a paper diary last year, and relied completely on my phone calendar. I am not confident this year is going to go any differently, but I'm trying to get back in the paper habit.

I went through Facebook and added birthdays in, according to an extremely random system consisting of very erratic criteria. People whose birthdays I had in my first school diaries, regardless of whether I still see them - in. People whose birthdays fall a day after a birthday I've already added - in. People whose birthday falls symmetrically with a birthday I've already added - in. People whose birthdays are in the first week of January - in twice! And so forth. You should probably let me know your birthday, I probably missed adding it.

I did take the opportunity to begin a couple of new exercise programs on the 1st of January, as follows:
30 Day Ab Challenge: This might sound familiar.
30 Day Push Up Challenge: Mostly made up. 10 pushups a day for a week, then 20 a day for a week, and so on. Stop me if you've heard this one before.
Throwing Challenge: Frisbee season has ostensibly started, although I've yet to hear anything about it. But that's cool since I'm now just a player and it's no longer my job to worry about such things. I'm a woman of leisure! Anyway, 100 throws a day? 100 throws some days? Some kind of unspecified but regular throwing amount.
Triathlon Challenge: UM WHAT NOW?

So my Running Buddy suggested that we do a mini triathlon (400m swim, 16.8km cycle, 4km run). I politely suggested she was crazy. Then we were at a event at which there was also plenty of wine, and I believe I may have said yes to this ridiculousness. The race is the 27th of January. 2014.

So that's a thing. January is therefore pretty busy, what with training for four events and all, but I think it's a good way to start the year. After this I can take 11 months off, right? (Wrong: doing nothing in December + eating all the food = January exercise so far sucks.)

Despite all the exercise that appears to be in it, I am really looking forward to 2014!

(image)
Week 1 - considerably easier than Week 4.



New camera

2013-12-29T19:59:03.512+10:30

I have always enjoyed taking photos but have never had a really good camera. For Christmas, the boyfriend got me a Doctor Who lunchbox, many chocolates, and a DSLR camera. He really does pay attention, that boy.I have a lot to learn, but so far I am really enjoying figuring it all out.It can take photos of people in cars:And babies:And after I read the manual (although clearly before I read it closely enough) it took photos of nature:I will spare you all the Christmas lunch and family photos, however.Anyone have any tips and tricks? [...]



Decision, decisions

2013-12-27T23:58:13.976+10:30

Reasons I am unsure about playing frisbee this women's season:

1. I'm not sure if I am welcome. As a leader, I messed up last women's season and everyone had a terrible time.

2. I am not sure I am good enough. I was picked last in a draft and failed to lead my team to a grand final last season. My confidence is not so good right now.

3. Maybe I should let them have a season without me involved, so they can run a team without my involvement. Related to number one, obviously.

Reasons I am going to play frisbee this women's season:

1. I just bought new cleats with my Christmas gift vouchers.



Words

2013-12-12T19:21:28.955+10:30

I want to start writing more regularly, and about topics other than running. I really should have done NaBloPoMo, but we can have our own pretend one now. To get back into the swing of it, there might be a few boring posts just for the sake of words.

Today's topic is ... television shows.

I watch a bunch of different shows, but pretty much nothing on the actual television (unless it's connected to my laptop).

In the I Only Have Twenty Minutes and the I Need Something Light categories, we have How I Met Your Mother and The Big Bang Theory. I probably should have given both of these up a long time ago, but HIMYM is nearing the end, and I can't give up so close to the finish line. And if I stopped TBBT, this category would be empty soon. Formerly in this category: Scrubs, Friends.

In the Surprisingly Good Again After Being Pretty Bad There For A While corner: Grey's Anatomy.
  
Parenthood and Hart of Dixie both Sucked Me In With One Actress I Love. I am pretty sure that Lauren Graham had a crying scene in every episode for the first season or two. Her character isn't actually that great, but she herself continues to be charming. Also completely charming: Rachel Bilson. (And also Anna-Beth from HoD, the character whose wardrobe I would most like to own for myself.)

I suppose Nashville could be in that category too (as I had finally starting watching Friday Night Lights just prior to it airing). And it and Hart of Dixie can be in the Read The Fug Caps Straight After Watching group.

Because Joss Whedon is obviously a category of its own, but Agents Of SHIELD is also a Why Aren't You More Awesome? show. It was on the Tiny List Of Shows The Boyfriend And I Watch Together, but was recently dropped.Still remaining on that list are QI and Arrow.

Shows That I Really Love When I Get Around To Watching Them, Usually In A Massive Half-Season Chunk include The Vampire Diaries and Once Upon A Time. I really don't know why I feel no urgency to watch them, because I really do like them. Pretty Little Liars and True Blood were in this category, but I kept not watching for so long that I doubt I ever will now.

Happy Surprises From Shows Beginning This Year include Reign and Witches Of East End - the latter in particular, as I had heard nothing about it until after it premiered. However, if things get busy next year, it may get dropped.

And of course, over in the Shows Whose Return I Am Eagerly Awaiting corner, we have Doctor Who and Game Of Thrones.

And dude, I think that is enough. Lucky I have some holidays coming up so I can smash out a few of those backed-up episodes.

PS: In the Shows I Am So Excited Are Being Made Into Movies category: VERONICA MARS.

How do you watch shows? 
Do you agree with my categories?
Am I missing any essential viewing (not that I have time to act on your suggestions)?



00!!!:58:16

2013-11-18T18:10:54.731+10:30

As you can see from the post title, I beat my previous 10k PB by two minutes!PB: 58:16The whole race wasn't as super exciting as the 12k where we were constantly surprised and amazed at our awesomeness. But I kept pushing myself and made it in under an hour! Take that, thirty-seconds-over.I didn't have my running app on, as it had been messing with my music in the lead-up and I figured that music was more important, plus I could do the maths for a 10k easier than a 12. But now that I managed it in under an hour, by myself, I would be really interested to see what my splits looked like.Two things from that paragraph that I should probably talk about: I can manage my six times tables, even when running. For the most part. For some reason, at the 9k mark, I convinced myself that 9 x 6 was 52, which meant that oh shit, I might only just make it. I sped up, then realised that I am a dumbass, then decided to stay sped up anyway.This was my first race running without my Running Buddy. I went through a few Imaginary Running Buddies (not that the people were imaginary, the fact that they didn't know they were my running buddies is what makes them imaginary) before I settled on a lady with grey hair and a marathon singlet on. I lost her at the first water break, but we'd kept up a good pace together til then.I was joined for a little while then overtaken by a frisbee acquaintance who was running with (1) a pram with (2) two kids in it, with whom he was (3) carrying on a conversation, while (4) running faster than me. Some people are very impressive. So he dragged me along for a little while as well, which was nice.My usual training run has a bridge in it, or two bridges as I like to think of it if you go all the way over the bridge and have to come back over it. This course? Two bridges! All that whinging training paid off.The boyfriend saw me off, (had breakfast, the jerk,) and then was waiting for me at about the 500m mark. I got a high five and pushed it out from there til I could actually see the finish line and sprinted from there. I did almost throw up when I got to finish line, but I'm not sure if that was maybe a self-fulfilling prophecy. Perhaps I had just run really hard.The weather was lovely. And I look weird when I run.I am super happy with my under-an-hour time.I think it is awesome that I can now casually go out for a thirty minute run (or forty or fifty).I won't be signing up for any more races immediately, but I will wait and see how frisbee is shaping for next season.I am truly thankful for everyone who contributed to my running enjoyment this season, including bloggy commenters, facebook likers or commenters, race volunteers, cheer squads, and running buddies real and imaginary.[...]



Same same but different

2013-11-16T16:49:26.384+10:30

Tomorrow is my third race of the season.

It is another 10k, along the beach this time. The weather is supposed to be lovely.

I have been somewhat training for it. I have been training for it, in that I've been running several days a week. I haven't been training for it, in that those runs were either shorter intervals (more helpful to frisbee), longer slow runs, or frisbee sessions. I have done abs/arms/legs sporadically.

Frisbee season will be starting again soon, so that has been in the back of my mind when going on these runs - trying to do sessions that will be effective for both.

I haven't run 10 kilometers since my last race, and I haven't run at race pace on any of my long runs since then. But I am feeling very steady on my long runs.

My goal is an hour, just because that was my goal last time. I am really not sure if I will make it or not. I feel like anything could happen. I could go along, slow and steady, and be comfortable in my breathing, and be happy that I finished this race and in fact three races this year. Or maybe I will know this is my last race (for now) and run so hard and probably throw up at the end of it. I really have no idea, which is why I haven't really committed myself to the whole one-hour thing.

Whatever happens, I am extremely proud of myself for this whole running season (all three races of it), and really very happy in the running habits that it has given me.

Now, if the shin splints and knee pain that showed up on my last long run will just stay away tomorrow, we might be okay.



How Father Christmas made me lose my shit and giggle like a schoolgirl

2013-11-09T23:00:37.223+10:30

So you may remember the Pancakes and Pageant tradition that signals the start of all Christmas traditions (of which I have many).Last year, someone booked a romantic weekend away on Pageant weekend, so we couldn't go, but this year, the tradition returned!There was pancake eating, chalk drawing, and window-sill sitting, and much waving. I looooove waving at the Pageanters and watch them go from automatic wave to enthusiastic wave. And of course, I love being waved to by Father Christmas himself.Now last time, he went all the way past before turning and waving directly at me. It was one of the greatest moments of my childhood life. I told this story this year to the amusement and befuddlement of those around me (except for the boyfriend of course - he knows what's up), but I was very concerned that I would feel a bit sad if I didn't get a wave this year.  So all the other floats have gone, and Father Christmas is coming! I am managing my expectations, like so: he can't wave at everyone every year, you are very lucky that he waved to you last time, etc. And Father Christmas is waving all around, he's blowing some kisses but mostly waving. AND THEN. YOU GUYS.FATHER CHRISTMAS POINTS. DIRECTLY AT ME. And waves. And blows kisses.And I completely lost it, it was so exciting and unexpected, and I GOT A POINT. No-one else got a point, it was so crazy!I think he must have remembered me, after all. Happy Christmas indeed.[...]



Thirty goddamn seconds

2013-10-20T21:52:16.848+10:30

My computer died a temporary death right after I got home from that last race. It was a very hard time for me. I only had my mobile, my tablet, my work computer... it was tough.

My goal was an hour, and if you only take a quick look at the photo below, that is exactly what I did it in!


Sadly, my official time is one hour and thirty stupid seconds. I am not really upset - I was nowhere near as prepared for this one as the City to Bay - but thirty seconds is so dumb. Ah well. There's always next time.
Here is us being happy at the finish line:


And here is me running:


In my head, I look like a sportswear model when I exercise. Becoming a runner has unfortuntely proven to me that that is not the case. (Just out of frame: my running buddy SMILING CHEERFULLY.)

My next race is in a month, and I really hope I can get in some good training before that one. The fact that I haven't been doing abs was really obvious to me during this race, so abs are coming back into the rotation. I also want to try out my local parkrun, although it is an unfortuntely timed run (by which of course I mean it is a timed run in the morning time). I will get back to the universe with my new goal time closer to the date.



Next goal: don't die.

2013-10-12T19:43:06.286+10:30

After our amazing success in the City to Bay, my running buddy and I immediately signed for a 10k to be held in a month's time.

I promptly got sick and couldn't run for two weeks, did a couple of runs, went away for a long weekend, came back and did a couple of runs, and now here we are on the night before the race.

This race is not like that other race.

To say I have trained for this one would be a vast overstatement. We are basically back to my very early goal for City to Bay, which was simply: to not die. And the one after that, which was: don't stop to walk. I do have a goal time, but given the lack of serious prep and my extremely unimpressive time 7k time yesterday (the only race I felt was a significant enough distance to bother timing since City to Bay), I am doubtful about our ability to meet it. (Also running buddy is totally injured, so I don't have to feel bad about holding her back.)

Oh! I have to tell you about the first run I did after being sick for two weeks. Maybe the second, otherwise I decided to run 7 ks straight off the bat. Smart. Anyway: Sunday morning, the worst time ever for a run. The boyfriend was with me, pretty sure he was hungover. It was ridiculous how terribly we both did. There was much walking involved, as well as bending over with hands on knees. It was kind of funny that we were both so so bad.

I'm sure tomorrow won't be like that.

Plus! Since the event is actually a half-marathon, our 10k group doesn't start til 9:15! That's almost the afternoon!

Goal time: One hour. Six-minute kilometers. We can maybe do this. Then again, maybe not and I won't be upset the way I would've been if we didn't meet our City to Bay goal. But it's something to aim for.



1:10:41

2013-09-15T17:12:12.742+09:30

BAM! That is five minutes under our goal time and a good twenty-plus minutes less than we did it in last year.Here is us at the starting line, looking all happy and not-sweaty.And here is us at the finish line, looking FUCKING TRIUMPHANT and also tired (and more than a little bit red in the face, I've just noticed) because we smashed it!We had a lovely team dinner last night with lots of delicious carbs.I woke up at RIDICULOUS o'clock this morning, so that I would have enough time to eat breakfast and wake myself up - having established that I am So Not A Morning Running Person. Facebook informed me that this awesome lady had finished this super-tough race, which totally got me in the pre-race mood and excited to kick arse.We finally got to the starting line, where I tried not to think about that time a couple of years ago (when I was just doing it for fun) when my timer didn't register. And we were off! We pushed it out hard at the start, it was hard not to get caught up in the crowd and the excitement, and we have always gone hard for the first two ks.But guess what? We went hard for almost ALL the ks! My running buddy and I were just looking at each other after every split-time update from my App Lady like, We are so awesome. We're going so fast. We're smashing it! It was so fun and I was just totally happy and really relaxed for the first nine ks or so. After that I really wanted to stop and have a nap, but Running Buddy wouldn't let me so we kept going.We had our own personal cheer squad for one part of it, and I cannot overstate how awesome it made me feel, to have people cheering for me, and telling me that I could do it. Awesome. I tried to push it out in the last k, but between being tired and having to dodge a ton of people near the finish line, I was never full-out sprinting (or as close as I get after 12ks) but I ran hard for longer than I usually sprint, so I am happy with that.And then we stopped, and did I mention we are awesome? I really think we are. From struggling to run five minutes at a time to running twelve kilometers and (mostly) enjoying it - that is cool.Thank you so much to everyone who has supported us, with donations or otherwise. You guys rock.We raised over $600 for the Little Heroes Foundation - and it's not too late to donate. [...]



Ab Challenge: Complete

2013-09-12T21:59:40.162+09:30

Yesterday, I did 125 sit-ups, 200 crunches, 65 leg raises, and a two minute plank. I completed the 30-Day Ab Challenge.*

Over the past month I have done the following:
1610 sit-ups
2120 crunches
901 leg raises
1400 seconds of plank.
That is pretty hardcore.**


I do not have a six-pack, having a bit too much of a fondness for carbs. You can absolutely see some definition, but my stomach is not totally flat nor rock hard. This is only hard to take when comparing it with my challenge buddy, who couldn't put on weight if his life depended on it.

You can see how hard I've worked, in the slight definition you can now see. I did the exact same amount of core work as someone who did end up with a six-pack. I regularly got up before seven a.m. to exercise. I can feel how much stronger I am now. And did I mention that I did a two-minute plank? I am strong.

I will probably continue to do some ab work on a semi-regular basis. I think the main advantage of these thirty-day things is that they instill regular workout habits. I will not continue to do 200 crunches a day, because that's just crazy and I think I pulled something in my back last time I did that.

One challenge down, one 12k to go.

*We also inadvertently completed a 30-Day Push-Up Challenge, because I insisted on adding some in, and turns out I added in the recommended 30-day dose.

**Hard. Core. Get it? Ha, I'm hilarious.



Dress Rehearsal

2013-09-08T16:55:01.201+09:30

Yesterday was the final long run of our training program before the big race.I have always found new clothes to be a good motivator, and since I have been running in frisbee shorts all this time, I thought some new running shorts might be nice. I bought these Nike running shorts with built-in compression shorts. They were on sale so I can only assume that they are last season's range or that real runners wear compression or little shorts but not both. However, since I am not used to seeing any part of my legs above the knee (hell, including my knees in some of my frisbee shorts), I though they'd be a good gateway apparel to actual running shorts. Also because they are purple.This meant that I had to get a running armband for my phone, so what with that and the new shorts, I thought a full dress rehearsal was in order.It was a good thing I did, because there were some technical difficulties with my phone - mostly with my music, which I figured out switches off after thirty minutes. Not helpful on a sixty-plus minutes run.It was also my first long run without my morning-person running buddy, so it was a bit of test to see how I'd do in case she runs off and leaves me on race day. (She won't.)We did pretty well. It's an interesting puzzle to see how slow you can go on the last 10ks if your first two are well below your goal average. I have realised there is a difference between plodding and jogging - and I really need to make sure I don't let myself do the former. Awesomely, the app lady thinks we did two 4-minute ks at the end there. (We didn't; she is on crack, or the GPS was.)I no longer care about doing the whole race without stopping, I just want to beat our goal time. I think I have too much frisbee fitness still built in - if I get even a really short break, I am good to go so much better than if I have to be running constantly. But I'm talking about quick water breaks, not walking breaks.I am really proud of how much progress we have made. I can now casually go out for a thirty-minute run - something I could never ever have done before all this started. And hopefully, next Sunday, we will be able to run 12ks in under an hour fifteen. Luckily, most of it is downhill!We are fundraising for the Little Heroes Foundation - it would mean a lot if you could donate. I'm offering this frisbee shirt and DVDs of Chasing Sarasota to anyone who makes a donation and emails me to claim them.[...]



Not a morning person

2013-08-29T22:34:18.114+09:30

I don't think anyone who knows me would disagree when I say that I am not a morning person.

Until a few weeks ago, we had been doing our long runs once a week after work. As in, not in the morning. However, we wanted to switch to road running, and to a weekend day, so we switched to morning runs.

Let me tell you, it is RIDICULOUS how much worse I am at running in the mornings. I am ACTUALLY NOTICEABLY SLOWER on our morning runs than I am in the evenings. And you know what? Having been the person who has breath to spare to jolly other people along, it is NOT HELPFUL to have cheerful people running alongside you at the butt-crack of dawn.

This is some bullshit, because as it turns, the race itself is - unfortunately for me - at too-damn-early o'clock on a Sunday morning.

I have two weeks to become a morning person. As my too-chirpy running buddy would say, I may perish.

We are fundraising for the Little Heroes Foundation. You can donate to the early-morning cause here.



Goal

2013-08-17T14:54:14.219+09:30

I strongly believe that if you have a goal you should tell someone, because the act of saying it out loud and putting it out in the universe means that you can now be held accountable by the universe. That's huge.

And oh yes, we are talking about running goals. This has become a fitness blog. Sorry about that, and don't worry, I don't recognise myself either.

My goal for the City to Bay is to complete the race in under one hour and fifteen minutes. Also to not stop for walking breaks. This means we have to run each kilometer in six minutes and fifteen seconds.

We have thus far been doing the long runs each week on grass, in cleats, but I thought it would be a good idea to get used to doing it on road, in runners. This week is the fifty minute one (it goes up by five each week) and so we calculated that we had to run eight ks in that time.

According to my yes-I'm-totally-a-running-app-person-now running app, we ran 7.66 kilometers (so our route planning was a bit out, but that's ok, blame Google maps).


According to the app, it took us 48:51, but according to my stop watch, which I paused whenever we had to stop at intersections, we did it in 46:10. That is 6:01 per kilometer! Even if you listen to the app, we did it in 6:22 which is pretty close to 6:15 kinda not really but the point is our goal of 1 hour 15 minutes is totally doable! Right? I hope.