Just as I finished this post…. the surgeon came out to give me an update on the procedure and say that as soon as Danny felt good we could head home! So I did not get to post this until later this evening…. but decided to leave it the same. Enjoy!
Good morning friends! Yes that is right – morning! As opposed to my normal late night hours of typing away, today I write to you from the city of Baltimore during daylight hours! Danny is having a few tests done this week and a few meetings next week with our team up here so we came up yesterday, spent the night, and are currently logging our last few hours at the hospital before heading back to VA. So far it has been smooth sailing – and Danny felt so good last night we actually were able to get out and grab dinner in Fell’s Point (an awesome place for nightlife and good eats in Baltimore). All in all a pretty good trip, says the one who has not had to get poked and prodded!! But Danny is in good spirits too.
Before being Baltimore bound we had a lovely weekend at home! Friday night Danny was planning to go to hockey and I had a impromptu shopping date with my mom – with an evening TV binge date planned when we both returned home. I love that Danny gives back to the community, is a supportive face to our beloved high school, and has discovered a passion…. but my mom and I also love built in time slots that “girl errands” can be planned. I love my husband and dad – but neither have ever understood the value of popping by Homegoods or wandering over to our favorite store sale racks on a regular basis. Yes, we were just there – but the additions to the sale category or the newly marked down treasurers are changing all the time! It takes true dedication to keep creative juices flowing and inspiration always at the ready…. luckily the favorite women in my life are all pretty committed to this effort.
Sadly Danny had a tough day and was just left with limited energy. So we cancelled the first part of our evening and just moved right to the main event – dinner and “Catastrophe”. That is right folks…. season 2 came out on Amazon Prime on Friday!! We sorta stumbled across Season 1 last fall and loved it!! Howling with the laughter on almost every episode – we flew through the season and were left with a cliff hanger that made us thirsty for more! We loved it so much over Christmas we made my brother-in-law watch with us and he too could not stop laughing. It is the sort of humor I associate with a Vince Vaughn type movie/charater – quick comebacks and poignant one-liners that we found ourselves quoting to one another regularly. Now I will caution you – the story line is awkward and some of the topics addressed are crude. There are some serious moments that can be fleeting – so they don’t always come to mind when you think of the show, but when you watch it again the realities of “that was actually sorta serious” will hit you. Plus this is a show based in London – so language is colorful… and often. Please keep this in mind before you invest the time watching, since it may not be your thing.
This TV experience was a little different however than our normal Friday night. Often this day of the week looks a little like a tornado of junk food has torn its way through our living room. On the table there is often several beverages for each person – beer, soda, gatorade, water – and a variety of foods that usually looks something like: salsa and chips as the pre-dinner snack, salad and pizza and mozzarella sticks- as the main event, and then a little something sweet – oreos, ice cream, popcorn with M&Ms – to bring up the rear (or just enhance mine…. sigh). And because it is Friday night and apparently full relaxtion is required – it all sits there while we take in our movie or empty the DVR. Followed by our grazing, we both move to a feeling of too full mixed with heavy eyelids, followed closely by the inability to get up until this heartburn or indigestion passes. Before we know it, midnight has come and gone and we are finally comfortable enough to clean up any of the remaining feast and head to bed. So let’s recap: we are lacking energy, some may say moving to exhaustion, eating until a full coma mode, and then staying up way too late to get comfortable enough to sleep – which is already being diminished by getting into bed so late. Or in Dan’s case – often getting up to go to bed and since he has been in and out of sleep for the last hour plus, not being able to get good sleep at all! This cycle has been on going for awhile.
This particular night however, we are in the midst of my complete transformation, and our whole family’s efforts to eat more selectively. So we had a Cava salad and pita wrap for dinner – with water, gatorade, and one light Corona (a girl has to live a little….). That is it! No snacking before…..no dessert after…. and we only ate during one and half episodes (making it stretch a bit by actually tasting our food – since we knew once we were done, it was gone!). It was a little weird at first and I of course was thinking about how tasty popcorn with some M&Ms would be during the next few episodes…… but we are still in the first week and I just have to get used to it. Continuing to sip on water, I enjoyed the show and at about 10:30PM we opted to shut down and get some sleep early. So what does this show us – besides the fact that we are old and leading some pretty quiet lives these days? Having a little control over your food….being a little selective with your diet – encourages healthly choices all around. I went to bed without the hint of heartburn and got some actual good sleep. But even more amazing – when I got up Saturday I was actually up and at’em with energy. I was able to use my Saturday morning and attack those must dos early on in the day…. leading to more energy and excitement…. it was awesome!
This past week I give myself an 80% in my eating efforts. I was not perfect….. but I was much more aware of my meals and did well to choose wisely. The return on that investment happened pretty quick with more energy….. better skin…. a few lbs down, and a clearer mind. Yes, I miss my diet coke and the ease of swinging through a drive thru for some piping hot fries….. but I was surprised at just how much better I felt. So I am continuing on the mission – even admist hospital fun – and look forward to seeing what other benefits I will find!
Being up and ready to go at a decent hour on Saturday, Quinlan and I had a walk, grabbed some coffee and then I spent a good part of that day on contract and blog work. Normally that can feel a little sad for Saturday – holed away in the house…. but this particular April day it snowed!! That is right – not a lot but enough that coffee, sweats and time in my little loft was just perfect.
That evening we had an extra special treat planned – dinner with some of my JMU favorites!! We had not seen some of them since the reunion in the fall for a VA Tech <> game, so dinner to catch up was really fun! We did go to a great American pub-like place with all sorts of tasty bar bites – this junk food junkies favorite! And if I am being honest – I ate a lot of stuff that would NOT match my decision making from the night before. I was proud of myself as I shared variety of foods with my friend and husband – so portions remained in control – but the food choices were based on taste, not a concept of fueling my body, and that night I had the heartburn to prove it! So just in case you are wondering….. even if I am seeing the benefit of healthy eating…..it is still an uphill battle. Luckily the company was great and I really enjoyed being out and about on this Saturday night with some of my fav party girls!
Sunday I was a little more sluggish getting out of bed (ugh…. I hope I learn my lesson), but once I got the coffee and my morning shake flowing – I was ready! It was a most productive day getting A TON done well before noon! Which worked out well because that afternoon we had some antiquing plans! Well – family antiquing that is! My parents have a few new folks coming to stay – one of my brothers is moving back home, a cousin has moved in until she and her fiancé are settled in the area, my sister has decided to stay and save – and only one leaving (Bridget is UVA bound in August) moving out – so they are making room! Danny and I have been wanting a few pieces of furniture to finish off our living and dining room space…. and so an old desk (that happened to be mine in high school) and dresser made their home with us that day as a new dining buffet and sofa table of sorts! We signed our lease for another year here this past week – so it only seemed fitting to add a few pieces into our abode as well!
That evening was spent preparing for the week – food, work, Baltimore – and getting the house back to neutral. Danny and I have a busy couple of weeks ahead with more Hopkins appointments, some weddings, my big conference trip, and spring hockey heating up, that we are making a big effort to clear the clutter and get the house back to neutral as often as possible. It has been so good for everyone feeling like we are staying ahead of life and not having to spend all weekend clearing clutter just to get to our weekly planned deep clean item – scrubbing the kitchen, mopping the floors etc.
So I know what you all are thinking – we live the glamorous life over here. This post had you on the edge of your seat at every twist and turn! Nothing earth shattering in our neck of the woods, but this morning actually (as I sit in a hospital), I was completing my daily prayer readings and stumbled across a passage talking about how important it is to be grateful for the normal/boring moments. In life, nothing is forever and so embracing the regular mundane should be something we always do – since there is no way of knowing how long it will last. And we are having a very smooth time here at hopkins – but not everyone in these hospital walls is having that same experience. So boring as it may be…. as lame as pictures of my new/old desk are – I am feeling very grateful for a post that is all about us just doing life! We are so lucky to have a home we love…. we are so blessed to have everyone at home and feeling good…. and we have been so inspired by the journey to try and learn to better care for our bodies – this boring weekend was actually pretty awesome! On that note – I hope this post finds you in a regular humdrum day….. with maybe a little extra pep in your step for having this predictable life of schedules and to dos. And while your doing that life thing – don’t forget to stop and smile a bit….. this life is a gift.
Thanks for reading and remember to make it a great day!