Monday, January 26, 2009

Good News For the New Year

In my last post I complained that, despite my increased cardio stamina and decreased running times, I was not losing pounds. I decided to forget about the weight loss for the winter months and just concentrate on keeping up my new hobby.

Levi and I went home for Christmas, then we both came home sick, so it was hard to go to the gym. We managed to keep going at least once a week during that time. Now we are back to three times each week and cardio in between (when it is not too cold). Since the beginning of the year I have lost three pounds and I am well on my way to meeting my goal of losing four pounds by the end of January.

Because of the winter running lapse I am not doing as well with my endurance. I think I took a step back in that department, so I'll just have to keep at it. Again, I am more concerned with just keeping it going until it gets warm outside and running is fun again. I also cannot wait to take my bike down to the trail.

The dress goal is looking good. I went to Obama's Commander in Chief Inaugural Ball on Tuesday night. I wore a dress that was a size smaller than I would have a year ago!

Layoffs All Around

One of my favorite people at work was laid off, and today was her last day. It is so sad to see her go. She is not local, so I can't even take her out to lunch! All I can do is pay her early.

So many people are being laid off all over the country (and world) right now. Of course I am grateful that Levi and I still have our jobs, and a little worried about the future. Every time I hear a story about someone being laid off from their supposedly secure job, I get a little stab of worry. I guess all we can do is keep our resumes up to date and save as much money as possible.

Good luck to all of you out there. I hope your jobs are secure and you can weather the recession.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

My 2008 Favorites

I am finally getting around to putting down my favorite things of 2008. I'll be happy if 2009 is half as great as 2008 was. These are things that made 2008 worth talking about.

1. Getting in (better) shape. Thanks to my walking/biking commute to work, the George Washington Parkway bike trail and our favorite little gym on Fort Belvoir, I am 20 pounds lighter than I was at this time last year.

2. Fireflies. One of my favorite things about moving to a new place is being constantly surprised by the different plants and animals. The birds and trees were enough to keep me excited all year, but nothing topped watching the fireflies.

3. Campaigns and rallies. We spent a good amount of the summer and autumn months at the Obama campaign office. We met some great like-minded people and saw a tiny piece of what it takes to run for a national office. I think it is like working as a towel boy for your favorite football team, then watching them win the Superbowl.

4. Rock Band. Yep, I spent plenty of time plinking away on a plastic guitar or singing into a microphone this year. I like the way you can get anyone to come to your house if you just say that you have Rock Band. A couple of drinks and Rock Band for a few hours... that is what Friday nights are for. Or Wednesday, or Monday...

5. Rachel Maddow on TV. Okay, I rarely get to watch her show on MSNBC because of my cable-less-ness. She has been my favorite political newsperson for the few years that she has been on Air America, and I love love seeing her all over the place now! Go Rachel!

6. The Batman roller coaster at Six Flags America. Hanging over the ground like you are flying. Coolest coaster ever.

7. Bust magazine. I finally subscribed to Bust this year after picking up individual issues for a while. Every new issue is better! Nice job making a magazine for working/crafting/DIYing/indie green feminists who vacuum and make cupcakes! It shows that you can be a feminist and feminine at the same time.

8. Lolcats. I guess technically I started loving this at the end of '07, but who's keeping track? and have turned into staples in my house. Not quite as important, but still worth noting, are lolsecretz and locatbible. Too ridiculous to explain.

9. Teaching ESL lessons. I work for an international business. Along with that comes international people. A few employees from Pakistan and the Philippines got together with me for weekly ESL lessons. I made up the lessons and they completed them in surprisingly creative and funny ways. It helped us get to know each other really well and taught everyone proper comma placement at the same time!

10. My Kenyan chat buddy. On the international note, I have a Skype chat buddy from Kenya. He teaches me words and tells me about his day to day activities. It is nice to hear about how different things are in other places.