About Me

Friday, June 15, 2012

My Year of Fun, 2012-2013

I have officially declared a year of fun for myself. For the past couple of years I've had some tough years at work and lately I've been searching for ways to relieve my stress. I've also been overworking myself ever since my mom broke her back when I was in the second grade. Now that I'm 36, I feel like I need a break. I've vowed to have as much fun as I can between June 1, 2012 to June 1, 2013. And if it works as well as I think that it's going to, I suspect that next year I will have to stick with the tradition and come up with another theme-filled year.

I kicked off my year of fun with a weekend trip to Las Vegas. My boyfriend and I went with four other couples and stayed outside the main Vegas strip near Lake Las Vegas. One of our friends took his boat and we spent a sun soaked day at Lake Mead. In the evening we headed in a limo over to the strip to have dinner and watch two shows. The weekend made me realize that I don't get out much because I tend to overwork myself. The weekend marked the first time that I've also ever formally gone away somewhere with other couples. It took my mind off of thinking about work all weekend long.

Declaring a year of fun has already proven itself to be super fun as I sit and think about ways to have fun. Thinking about ways to have fun takes my mind off of the negativity and burnout that I have been suffering due to work. As I brainstorm and plan, I feel like once again I am coming alive and connecting with the real me. I've lost myself somewhere along the way as I have tried to live a life serving others. I'm dedicated to beginning to walk the path of serving others while also nurturing myself and my needs.

Always the consummate strategic planner, I've been busy thinking about ways that I want to have fun over the next year. I'm just starting to brainstorm ideas and generate a list of fun goals that I would like to accomplish in the next eleven months. It just occurred to me that so many of my goals cost a bit of money to accomplish, so over the next week I'm going to also generate a list of free ways that I can also have fun. Just some of my 2012-2013 Year of Fun goals are:

  • Go to Cabo San Lucas with friends. All of my life, I've prided myself on "authentic travel". Well this time I want to just hedonistically spoil myself at a touristy beach resort. Cabo here I come! I am planning the trip for August. 
  • Swim with dolphins in Cabo. Well, only as long as they aren't in the ocean. Because I'm scared to death of the ocean. And sharks. 
  • See the show "Iris" by Cirque de Soleil. In fact, I should probably even read a summary of what it's even about. Buy hey, it's Cirque de Soleil so it's probable that I will enjoy it. 
  • Go back to Vegas soon with friends. The next time won't be a relaxing boating experience, but a party type of weekend. I'd love to have nice dinners, gamble a little (although I don't really even gamble) and see a few shows. 
  • Visit two of my girlfriends who moved to San Francisco at least two times. I'd like to go alone once and take my boyfriend another time. I haven't planned what I'd like to do in Frisco, but visiting Alcatraz is a must! 
  • Go to at least two murder mystery dinner shows! 
  • Go see the Book of Mormon when it comes to the Pantages Theatre in Las Angeles.
  • Go to the Madonna concert this year when it comes to Los Angeles.
  • Take my two nieces to Disneyland for the first time. Maybe I'll invite one of our other new couple friends who have three small children.
  • Also I'd love to take my nieces to Sea World. It helps that there is currently a deal on Expedia that adults can pay the same as a child and that children under the age of three are free. Seaworld, here we come! 
  • Go to New York or Europe with my honey. Or Brazil. In fifteen years that we've been together, we just barely started going away on getaways together! We have a lot of catching up to do! 
  • Go on at least six formal hikes somewhere away from my local neighborhood. They must be a minimum of one and half hours! I'd love to visit Runyon Canyon in LA. 
  • Go on a helicopter ride to the Hollywood sign or go on a hot air balloon over Temecula. Maybe. Did I mention that I am afraid of heights? 
  • Go on a walkathon. Or a marathon. 
For years I've been frugal and rarely spend any extra money. This year I am going to make an effort in not even flinching when I have to spend money on some of these items. I know that I am going to need to spend money if I want to relieve my stress. However, this week I am going to brainstorm a variety of free alternative fun activities that I can participate in. I'm so excited!

If you declared a Year of Fun, what are a few things that would be on your list? 

Monday, May 14, 2012

Misadventures in Boating


A close friend of my boyfriend bought a new boat on Saturday and invited us out to the lake on Sunday. I found out about it at the last moment on Saturday and was irritated that my boyfriend begged that I go with them. I'd been having a rough couple of weeks at work and had to work six days this week. I felt like I needed to stay home and relax on Sunday, my only day off. I eventually caved in and decided to join them on their boat ride.

When I got into the boat, all of reservations about going just disappeared. For once I just sat, relaxed, talked with friends, drank beer and ate delicious barbecued food. I was living it up. I didn't even think once about work, or any other worries. I felt so happy and carefree--until the boat engine died, that is.

We were floating in the middle of the lake when the engine died. Soon we flagged down some people on jet skies and asked them to tell the park rangers that we were stuck on the lake. We settled in to wait for them to come help us. Hours passed and we floated closer and closer to an area of jagged rocks. We didn't have an anchor on board so we knew that it was inevitable that we were going to hit the rocks.

I started to panic. I panicked not because I thought that we would be hurt. I started to feel completely stressed over the fact that the boat was going to be damaged by the rocks. I voiced my panic to my boyfriend and friends and told them that I was starting to have a panic attack. Obviously none of them have had a real panic attack because they started to egg me on and tease me a bit. I told them repeatedly that a panic attack is a physical reaction and that it can escalate. They laughed and teased.

Eventually I went crazy. I had a complete fit, screamed at my boyfriend and jumped fully clothed into the water. I had tight fitting yoga pants on and as soon as I hit the water my pants immediately became large and loose. My pants fell down around my ankles and I could barely swim because my feet were tangled. I struggled to pull up my pants because I was afraid that everyone would see that I had thong underwear on. Finally I pulled up my pants and someone pulled me into the boat.

As soon as I got out of the water, the shock of jumping into cold water and having my pants fall off just shocked me back into reality and the panic attack was gone. I laid out in the sun and just watched the boat float into the rocks. My boyfriend and his friend jumped out and stood in the water for hours, trying to keep the boat away from the rocks. And then lo and behold the engine eventually turned on and we headed back home. What a day!

Friday, April 6, 2012

F is for...F**kin' Perfect

I super love the lyrics to this song. I can really relate:

F is for....Facebook Manners

I'm participating in the Blogging A-Z April Challenge where I blog about a topic associated with a certain letter each day. Yesterday was my birthday and I skipped the letter E. Today I'm still feeling festive with little drive to write, but I thought I'd upload a funny video about Facebook manners for the letter F. Sadly all the rules are true in this video and some people really do some dumb things on Facebook. I think that the video really is cute and funny:

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

D is for Dress


Today I bought a dress for the first time in over a decade. Once I started gaining weight about ten or eleven years ago, I stopped wearing dresses. I never wore a lot of dresses, but back in the day I used to like to wear dresses out to dance clubs or special occasions. I haven't felt good enough about my weight or body to even try one on in years.

Saturday I am going to the wedding of my boyfriend's friend and I am really excited about it. It will be the first gay wedding that I have ever been to, and it will be on a yacht that floats around the bay. For a week my boyfriend has been excited and asked me to go and get something nice to wear, get some makeup and fix my hair up. Usually he is pretty supportive of my weight or me dressing down. I think it's finally starting to be apparent to him that perhaps I haven't been taking the best care of myself lately.

At first I felt a lot of stress about the event. I know that many of the other skinny wives are going to get all dolled up with hair, makeup, heels and jewelry. I've never cared for jewelry and am sort of a minimalist lately in the makeup department due to allergies. I just hate comparing myself to the other women. I don't feel good about myself.

Tonight I went shopping and I just bought a dress. I am nervous, but excited. Tomorrow is my birthday and tomorrow I am going to mark the day as the first day of my new life, a life where I start caring more again about my appearance, health and weight. In a way I feel like I have low self esteem and am scared to death to wear the dress on Saturday, but at this point if I don't start trying then I never will begin to feel better. It all starts with the first foot forward. And a new dress.

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

C is for Chloe

I am participating in the Blogging A-Z April Challenge, a challenge where bloggers write about a topic associated with a certain letter each day. Today is the third day of the challenge and the letter is C.

A year ago my boyfriend brought home a small black dog that he rescued from his father's house. His father had an uncanny knack for acquiring dogs that he wouldn't really take care of. He would lock them up with cats in cluttered rooms, or in a yard where they would escape. Eventually my boyfriend would bring the dogs over to his house to take care of.

In the backyard of my boyfriend's house there was already a large great dane that he had rescued from his father. There was also an old yellow chihuahua. And a young female boxer. And then one day a little black dog named Baby showed up. I was irate.

I yelled, whined and stomped my feet. "Your father is so irresponsible!" I complained. "I'm tired of him getting dogs and not taking care of them. That dog needs to go!" I demanded.

"He bought the dog for my niece," he explained. "It won't be here for very long".

I hated little Baby. For the first couple of days and nights she barked incessantly and I wanted to rip my hair out. I plotted and planned that I was going to give her away to people at work and tell my boyfriend's father that she had ran away. One sleep-deprived evening I even lay on the couch and thought about killing her if she wouldn't stop barking.

At the time I had recently lost two of my dogs that I had owned for twelve years. Within a four month period they both got sick and died, one basically getting sick as soon as the other died. I was absolutely heartbroken. I just couldn't find it in myself to bond with any of the four dogs in the backyard, although I had agreed to adopt the Boxer. I didn't pay any of them much attention.

One day I brought the Boxer and the little black dog home to my house. I stayed alone with them for about three weeks without taking them to my boyfriend's house because the little black dog Baby was in heat. Days passed and suddenly Baby started to crawl into my bed and snuggle with me at night. And then suddenly I decided to rename her Chloe.

Now I am really starting to love Chloe. I can still feel myself being detached from her because I am afraid to have my heart broken over a dog again. But each night that she crawls into my bed to sleep at my feet, I get a warm fuzzy feeling of love all over again. Hopefully one day Chloe will mend my broken heart.

Monday, April 2, 2012

B is for Baby Fever. Or, Biological Clock

I am participating in the Blogging A-Z April Challenge, a challenge where bloggers write about a topic associated with a certain letter each day. Today is the second day of the challenge and the letter is B.
baby bentrup

There once was a time when I had a major aversion to babies. Strangers' babies, friends' babies, any baby-I didn't care for them. They never looked cute to me; in fact, they looked red, slimy, and sticky. I thought they were smelly and loud. I never felt the urge to hold them. I used to feel irritated by sitting next to them in restaurants. And, I certainly never wanted one of my own.

I've always had a pet peeve with babies in my work space. I have never really understood women who have a baby and bring them into the office. Everyone stands around, cooing and ahhing, competing with one another to hold the baby. As a manager, I always pop myself out of the office, force myself to look at the baby, say "Oh, how cute" and then go back to work. I swore up and down that I would never! bring one of my future babies into the office. For years I even swore that I wouldn't be caught dead having a baby.

Years ago my boyfriend used to tease me that we would have three babies. He came from a family of three boys and wanted three children himself. "Hell no!" I used to say. "I don't want a child at all, but you want three. Can we compromise on just one?" I asked. He agreed. That conversation persisted until I was about 33 years old. Then one day I just stopped all my protesting.

A year and a half ago I rescued a dog that I thought was pregnant. (She wasn't). I suddenly became so nurturing towards her and her future puppies. A couple of months later, while out walking with my boyfriend and the dog, I started pointing out everything baby-a puppy, a baby bird, even-shall I say it?? (gasp)- little human babies all over the neighborhood. Then I started to notice and look at babies everywhere and even found myself once saying, "Oh, how cute!"

Now my baby fever had morphed into something else. Now I am completely obsessed with giving life. I want to plant and grow flowers, herbs and plants-although all of my life I have effectively boycotted gardening. I wonder if little bugs I see are babies. I want to read about baby caterpillars, tadpoles and I even think little baby mice are oh so cute. I see flowers sprouting from plants and trees, and cute little baby grass, plants or weeds sprouting in dirt or through cracks in the pavement.

Now I want to quit my job and start popping out five or six babies, and then adopt even more! I want to give up my job so that I can run around in the park all day long with my little babies and dogs. In three days I will be turning 36 and I think that I'm almost ready to have a baby!

Babies here, babies there; babies, babies, everywhere! Babies! Babies! Babies! I have baby fever!!


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