Month : December 2009

new year. new goals. new shoes.

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It seems overly indulgent to treat myself to more shopping even AFTER receiving so many wonderful Christmas gifts. But…I am justifying that these are a key element to an investment in health…my goal for 2010. I have a tendency to go for the brightest, most obnoxious pair on display, but the sales girl, a runner herself, steered me in a totally different direction, and I have to admit, these do make my feet feel amazing, even before they're broken in. You don't realize how well worn a pair of workout shoes is until you replace them – such a difference! I'm also psyched that because they're Nikes, my iPod sensor can fit inside the shoe, as opposed to always tying it onto my laces. Bring on the tunes and the running!

T-minus 5 Days…

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All gifts have arrived and are wrapped? Check (minus one that is taking FOREVER to make its way to our house!)

All cookies have been baked and frozen? Check (see frosting drizzle mess above)

Totally and completely ready for some days off to enjoy family and friends? CHECK!

HEALTH in 2010.

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It's time to start thinking about goals for the coming year.

I usually have a short list of resolutions for myself every year. This year, I have decided rather than over-analyze lots of little goals and specific deadlines, I am going to embrace one main concept for the year and work towards that, in lieu of a long list. No specific number to weigh, no exact requirement of trips to the gym, just one overall goal to work towards.

I have to credit Ali's "One Little Word" post as a source of inspiration for this idea. My one little word (and overall goal) for 2010 is health

Health — noun

1. The general condition of the body or mind with reference to soundness and vigor.

2. Freedom from disease or ailment.

3. Vigor, vitality.

I thought about some runner-up choices, such as balance, energy, etc, but I realized this is really what my biggest life need is right now, and it is what I should be focusing on more than anything else in the coming months. (That's me, getting super healthy, up above).

My goal has several aspects – no ultra-specific goals, just some general areas to work on to consider 2010 a successful year:

  • I want/need to get back into running (I fell short of my 5k goal I set earlier this year). I need to drop some pounds and I think this is the best way to do so. I am joining a gym (with an indoor track – perfect for the ice/snow months!) and incorporating some variation workouts into my routine. I've discovered a love of yoga and want to expand on this in the coming months and reap both the mental and physical health benefits.
  • Aside from the workouts, I want to make an effort to eat better. I am not particularly unhealthy with my meal choices, but it is the sweet tooth that fails me. Cutting out sugar will be a big piece of this goal. I LOVE veggies, but struggle with fruits. I could stand to eat a few less carbs and a bit more lean protein.
  • After some slight scares and painful procedures lately at the dermo, I will be much more diligent about getting in for my skin checkups. They've been bumped from annual to bi-annual, so I hope this will make it easier to stay on top of things. I LOVE the sun, and it will be impossible to give it up entirely, but I have received a much-needed kick to use higher sunscreen and limit my hours in the rays.
  • I will floss EVERY day, not just every third or so, as I have a tendency to do. 🙂 I already have both of my six month teeth cleanings for 2010 scheduled so there is no excuse to miss them. 

In anticipation of kicking it into high gear once the packages are opened, and the cookies are all gone, I am preparing in advance for this change in lifestyle. I'm planning some meals with the help of livestrong.com (great tool for tracking meals/nutrients and workouts on a regular basis). I have hit the sale racks a couple of times for some cute new workout things (new workout clothes are a great motivator to get to the gym and show them off!). Finally, I've asked for a couple of health-related things from Santa, so as long as I'm good and he delivers, I will be all set to get started!

Do you have a goal or a "one little word" for the new year? I'd love to hear.

Cheers to a happy and healthy 2010.

ugly sweater time!

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I know this is not a new concept, but it was our first Ugly Sweater Xmas party. I think the pics speak for themselves haha. Hope you're enjoying the festivities of the season!

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blizzard: part two

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I started this post a couple of days ago, and never got back around to finishing it until just now. I had to backtrack so I could show the crazy picture of how even George, our trusty Xterra, had trouble with the first snowstorm of the season!

Snow days are fun for a while, but sooner or later, you get cabin fever and just want your routine back. Page and I had both worked from home for a day and a half, and by the second evening we were itching to get out, if even just to see what our neighborhood looked like and grab some Starbucks. We had watched one two many DVDs and we couldn't find our Wii Sports game. We even flirted with opening xmas gift early just for entertainment..in short, we needed SOMETHING to do!

Our driveway had been plowed about 4am earlier that day but with a couple more inches throughout the day and some CRAZY blowing winds/drifting snow, our driveway again looked like this. Now mind you, we are renters, so we have yet to own a snow shovel, let alone a blower of any kind. We knew it would be a while yet until someone got back to our driveway, so bored as we were, we decided to venture out. Needless to say, after a 15 minute ordeal getting out of the driveway, we went straight to Lowe's for a snow shovel. Digging our car out using a shop broom and oil funnel…not so fun.

After all that work, Starbucks, and just about everything else for that matter, was closed (although we did get our Lowe's purchase!) but it was entertaining enough just to get out and see the MOUNTAINS of snow drifts everywhere, and a town that, in the middle of the afternoon, was a complete ghost town.

For now, I've had my dose. Here's to snow-free weather for a few days!

recipe binder.

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I have the world's most adorable recipe box (thanks to my mama) but it has been working overtime, unsuccessfully, to keep my zillion-plus recipes in check. I used to be super organized and always re-copy a new recipe on coordinating cards…and have since decided life is too short. I print full pages directly from Real Simple online, or I tear them out of Food Network magazine. I still use traditional recipe cards to copy family/personal recipes, but all in all, the full pages combined with too many dishes to try was making my recipe box an overflowing disaster zone.

Enter the recipe binder. 

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I have been meaning to put this together for quite some time. Last week's snowstorm was just the break from everything else that I needed, and I got to work. I had a very hard time finding page protectors with 4×6 slots to hold my recipe cards, so those are still on their way from good old Amazon. Until then, the binder is not quite complete, but here are some shots of what I have so far. It's nothing too flashy or glamorous, as I figure it will get some messy hands-on treatment in the years to come. In fact, as I post this, I realize I still need to find some creative way to label the front/spine.

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I divided tabs according to what makes sense to me, and stuck a clear velcro folder in the back as a "catch all" when there's not time in the moment to put recipes in the appropriate spot, or to stick meal plans/menus until they can be 3-hole-punched in the back (is that a verb?). Anyway, I went with page protectors rather than just punching the recipe pages, because I figure that will save them from some spills and smudges in the kitchen. In doing so though, the tabbed dividers I started out with (any standard tabs, as I found out) didn't project far enough to be seen past the page protectors. So, if you are planning to do a project like this (recipes or any other), I recommend Post-It brand adhesive file tabs. They're very strong and stay put, and I placed them directly on the first page protector of each section, followed by a label from the trusty label maker. Voila! Now, what's for dinner??

blizzard, baby!

When it rains, it pours. Or in this case, when it snows…

The first real snow of the season fell yesterday and has not let up since then. Page and I both came home for the afternoon to work from here and avoid the nasty driving conditions. Here are pics Page took around 4:30 this afternoon…

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…and then these just a few hours later, shortly before 9:00

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Let's just say we're glad we got to the store when we did…we might be here for a bit!

latest logo

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Congrats to CrossFit Des Moines on its new look! This gym, originally located in Winterset, Iowa, is on the move to the Des Moines area. See the tire tracks inside the X? That's inspired by the fact that at this gym, they actually throw tires as a training method!

I always think it's interesting to look back and see how a design begins, evolves with client feedback, and eventually comes to fruition as a final product. There are color changes, style changes, and so much more. Some logos are spot-on the second they are brainstormed. Others take just a little more poking and prodding to get it juuuuust right. The final is above, below are a couple of the phases along the way.

Initial mock-ups:

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And some later-round revisions after some feedback from the client, narrowing down concepts:

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