Friday, May 31, 2013

Fan of Friday: Week of 5/31/2013

Hello, my name is Carolyn and I am a nerd.

I've been embarrassed to admit it, but I've got quite a geeky obsession lately.

That's right. I'm currently racing through Star Wars expanded universe novels.

I had been checking them out from the library, but I started buying them at used bookstores because I don't want to be without them. I want to build up a library and these will apparently be my cornerstone.

So far, the only books I've read are based on characters established by the movies. Luke Skywalker, Princess Leia, and Han Solo. Once I make it through all of their books, I'll start on the Old Republic stories or the stories about their kids. Or maybe I'll read the Han Solo and Lando Calrissian prequels. Who knows? There are so many stories to choose from when you're late to the game.

Part of the reason I enjoy these stories so much is that they don't waste a lot of time on imagery or character development. When I type it out, it sounds terrible, but you get what I mean, right? There aren't pages and pages spent describing Princess Leia or her relationship with Han Solo or what the planet of Coruscant looks like. If you don't know, watch the movies (and if you haven't seen the movies, why are you reading the book?)

It's professional fan-fiction, people. Get on the bandwagon! It's awesome!

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

25 Facts About Me

And now for something completely different, 25 random facts about me!

1. I love dancing. I used to help teach a bellydancing class.

2. I have central heterochromia, meaning the center of my irises are orange while the outside is green.

3. Although it sucks that people think I only got my job because of my dad, I love working with my dad. We don't work on the same team, but it's nice to have someone who will always grab an extra piece of pie for you.

4. I flip off my computer when it deletes things, like the first time I wrote out ALL of this post. Thanks Blogger automatic saving, thanks a lot...

5. Someone secretly puts dinosaur toys in my mailbox and I freak out in happiness every single time.

6. I collect Nancy Drew books and actually have two first editions.

7. I'm a worrier and a planner. I'm always running through options and potential outcomes in my head. There is always a plan and a back-up plan.

8. I know it's narcissistic, but my favorite holiday is my birthday. If someone ever bought me a paper birthday crown, I would wear it everywhere and be so excited. 

9. Rubbing a cat belly is the holy grail.

10. I am very good at catching small objects, like Goldfish crackers and Starbursts. Cat-like reflexes for anything smaller than a quarter.

11. I don't have a lot of 'favorites': favorite food, favorite movie, favorite color. I'm too fickle to commit myself to one thing and get pigeon-holed.

12. I have a younger sister of who I am very protective.

13. I'm the only redhead in my immediate family. I have a redheaded aunt and my grandpa used to have red hair, but it's been white as long as I've known him

14. I watch Jurassic Park or any of the sequels whenever they're on TV, much to the chagrin of my family.

15. Although I am not Mormon, I lived in a Mormon apartment complex in college. It was great because there were never any rowdy parties.

16. I really love green olives.

17. When I was 10 years old, I accidentally ran over my next door neighbor on my bicycle. She was fine, but I haven't ridden a bicycle since.

18. I wouldn't care if about my fluctuating weight if all of my existing clothes still fit. I really need to print out a mantra that says something like, "Do you really want to eat that cookie or would you rather fit back into your green dress?" And the answer will always be the dress because it's a gorgeous vintage green silk number. More dress, less M and M's...

19. Singing way too loud in the car is my favorite guilty pleasure. I don't care if you drive past me and see me looking like an idiot, I'm having too much fun to care.

20. I've never broken a bone or spent the night in the hospital.

21. I could play The Sims 2 for days on end. DAYS!

22. My face is very dramatic. If I am pleased, I look estatic. If I'm annoyed, I look like I will rip your head off. If I'm tired, I look exhausted. Only video poker for me.

23. I hate being late for anything. If it's important, I always leave extra time and get really anxious if I'll only be on time, not early.

24. My favorite subject at school was Physics. My original major in college was 'Engineering Physics' until I switched it to the more practical and employable 'Mechanical Engineering' halfway through my first semester.

25. My first kiss with Dan was in a parking garage after he walked me to my car. Since he missed all the signals the previous times he walked me to my car, I told him I'd been having dreams about kissing him. He finally got the hint.

So now you know a little more about me. I'd say that explains why I'm so, um, odd, but that's just the tip of the iceberg...

Monday, May 27, 2013

Gilmore Girls Lied to Me About Connecticut

In a whirlwind 48 hours last weekend, I took Connecticut by storm. And by storm, I mean I went there and there was a storm and I didn't really do anything but work. Here's a little summary of how it went.

4:30 AM PST - Wake up, get ready, and head to the airport.
6:30 AM PST - Get on a plane for Atlanta
2:00 PM EST - Grab some lunch and jump on a plane for Hartford
5:30 PM EST - Land in Connecticut, check in to the hotel, grab some dinner.
9:00 EST (6:00 PM PST) - Crash asleep

5:30 AM EST (2:30 AM PST) - Wake up
6:30 AM EST - Breakfast with the people we'll be working with
8:30 AM EST - Start repairing robot
10:59 AM EST - Finish fixing robot like a boss. Only two and half hours It did result in a painful blister on my right index finger and a cut on the back of my middle finger, but it was worth it to get it done that fast.

3:30 PM EST - Finally get to leave the site. Other people were working on other stuff. I sat by with my book and tried to make the most of it. You know, on an uncomfortable raised floor. Quick tour of the cool part of the site we didn't get to work on.

4:00 PM EST - No break for lunch, but now time for an early dinner with the guys we worked with.
5:30 PM EST - Relaxation at the hotel
7:00 PM EST - Drive around to find a place for some dessert. Mmm, strawberry shortcake sundae at Friendly's.
9:00 PM EST - Crash asleep again.

5:00 AM EST (2:00 AM PST) - Wake up and check out of hotel
8:30 AM EST - Board flight to Minneapolis
10:00 AM CST - Board flight for Tucson
12:30 PM PST - Finally arrive home
1:00 PM PST - Nap
4:00 PM PST - Mother's Day with my mom.

It was a long and tiring weekend. I got up the next morning, bright and early, and headed on into work. Sorry the format for this post is kind of lame, but I somehow am still recovering from that exhausting trip and I don't care to put in any more effort.

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Yes, Deer

In most parts of the country, this probably isn't a big deal. This probably doesn't even count as a story. I don't care. I found it exciting.

I saw a herd of deer! Now, I must preface this with the fact that I think I've only seen deer in the wild once or twice before this. 

Aren't they pretty? There's only two kinds of deer in Tucson, white tail and Mule deer, and given the size of their ears, I'm pretty sure they're Mule deer.

Anyway, it was kind of a funny story. I was turning into my neighborhood after a run and there they were, in the middle of the road. (And yes, to get it out of the way, yes, I do drive to go running. I don't like running in my neighborhood.) They just stood there, like a bunch of deer in headlights. I drove slowly passed them so I wouldn't scare them.

After getting home, after a 2+ mile run, I ran inside to get my camera. Then, I ran furiously to see if the were still there, by the road. My huffing and puffing and panting and stomping as I attempted to see them should have scared them off. Fortunately, it didn't and I got a couple of pics.

Seriously, all Arizona deer must be ninjas for them just to roam around and me not see them. At least I know what to look for now, like blatantly standing in the middle of the road during broad daylight...

Monday, May 20, 2013

Stitch Fix Review: The Sequel

If you'd like to read about my first experience with more detail about how Stitch Fix actually works, here is my first review.
I just received my second box from Stitch Fix and let me start out by saying, I am torn. I am so very torn.

Let's start at the beginning with what came in my box.

Delanie Floral Print Self Tie Dress, $78. This dress had a lot of potential. The fabric is soft and feminine, the red is almost coral in color, and the buttons on the top of the sleeves is a cute touch. However, the cut just did not work on me. It's too boxy and the drawstring waist wasn't enough to fix it. Also, it was just a little too casual for me to think I could dress it up for work. Back in the box.

Claudia Cut Out Silk Tank Top, $88. I really don't understand this top. Where are you supposed to wear it? And who is supposed to wear it? Flowy button-up tops like are nearly impossible to wear unless you've got a BMI under 20 or a cup size under B. And the potential sunburn lines! It looks better on me in pictures (although pictures really don't do the cerulean color justice), but this shirt was a mess in person.

Multi Chain Layered Short Necklace, $38. This necklace almost didn't go back in the box. I loved the idea of a dozen or so chains of nearly the same length. However, the deep red dipping concerned me. I'm sure it would look go on a lot of people with a lot of different outfits, but I couldn't figure out how to wear it. Apparently, Stitch fix doesn't include styling instructions with jewelry. The deep red didn't go with enough clothes I have to justify spending $38.

Sophia Skinny Jeans, $88. According to the internet, you get what you pay for when it comes to jeans. I've never actually tested this hypothesis because I've never had an expensive pair of jeans fit well enough to justify spending the money. And these jeans didn't fit either. A size too small. Granted, if I were in a store, I would have tried on the next up size and I may have considered spending the $88 for them. They were well constructed and the denim was much higher quality than the Target jeans I'm currently wearing. If I had money burning a hole in my pocket, I may google the brand and see if I can find them in a size that fits me, but this pair was a no-go.

Cherry Hi-Low Racer Back Tank, $38. When I opened the box, just looking at the fabrics, I would not have told you that I would be keeping the cherry print top. I can't say I've ever been a fan of cherry print, I actually think they're a little played out. However, the small scale of the print and the jewel tones changed my mind. It's a polyester, but you'd never guess by touching it. It feels like it's much higher quality. Also, with the flowiness and the high-low cut, it'll be great on days I feel puffy. Throw a cardigan over it and wear it to work. It was the sole survivor of this box. 

So, again, the box was one for five. It could have been worse.

Here's where I am torn. I love the idea of Stitch Fix. I love the idea of a stylist picking out a bunch of pieces for you, based on your profile, sending it to you with styling ideas, and trying them on at home. That being said, I don't feel like that's what Stitch Fix delivered. I don't feel like the pieces were chosen for me.

Yes, there were improvements between the first and second boxes, but I also greatly increased the amount of information I gave them. Hell, I included a link to my blog post about my first box. And yes, there was a note about how none of the pieces were sheer because I said I'm not a fan of tops that must be layered.

However, I would never wear that cerulean top. They tend to only work on waify frames, which from my profile measurements and blog pics, I am clearly not. Secondly, even if it flattered my body type, I couldn't wear it to work. My profile designates that I'd like most of my pieces to be work appropriate. Lastly, it was $88! That's insane! I know I have it set for tops between $50-100, but there is no way that that top should cost that much. In my mind, I will spend $75 on a nice cashmere sweater, not a tangled blouse.

The main reason I think I'm torn, though, is that I'm still unsure of what I want from Stitch Fix. The reason I joined was that I really wanted to branch out and try new clothes that I never would have considered. I never would have tried on the cherry top, but I have to say it's perfect for me. On the other hand, I feel like the stylist just chooses a couple of pieces they get at a discount, check that the sizes are close enough, and throw them in a box. For what I'm paying for the 'stylist fee' and the cost of these pieces, I feel like more of the items in the box should be up my alley.

There's a couple other little gripes I had:
  • There's no notice when your return has been processed. The thing that makes me the most nervous about Stitch Fix is the potential for the returned items to get lost in the mail and ending up having to pay for everything. After my first return to Stitch Fix, I was constantly checking me email, waiting to hear if they had made it back safe and sound. Nothing. If not an email, at least make it an option on your website that I can check my order's progress. Keep a girl in the loop!
  • The Style Profile isn't detailed enough. Why not have inputs where I can give you my measurements? Me telling you that I'm a size 10 in pants doesn't really mean anything when a 10 from Old Navy is a 16 at Forever 21 (Shut up! So I buy cheap clothes a lot!). Also, the "Final Comments" box portion of the style profile is much too small. I felt like there were all kinds of things I still had to say when the character count cut me off. People will probably assume that I am hovering and trying to be too involved in the process, but how does having more information about me hurt?
  • Let me know the style profile update deadline. After my first delivery, I went through and updated my style profile to make sure it was really reflecting me and my style. A couple of weeks passed and I wanted to add something to my profile, but it was only like two weeks before the next shipment was to be delivered. It would have been great to know if I still had time to make adjustments or if I had missed the deadline. Or even a reminder email that they would be starting building my box in a few days if I had any last minute updates or requests. 
  • I inadvertently spoiled the surprise of what was in my box. I logged on to double-check the arrival date of my next box (to make sure I hadn't scheduled it for when I would be out of town) and they were already asking me how I liked all my pieces! With detailed descriptions! Now, this may not be a negative to some people, but I am a girl who loves a surprise. I was really disappointed. 
Maybe my expectations are just too high. I still have hope for Stitch Fix, but not as much as I initially did. I'm going to give it one last shot next month and hopefully I'll be blown away by my next box. I've requested a maxi skirt and breathable work clothes. Stay tuned...

*This post was not sponsored by Stitch Fix. All opinions are my own.*

Friday, May 17, 2013

Fan of Friday: Week of 5/17/2013

Have you ever been watching a show and desperately wanted the clothes one of the character is wearing? What am I saying? Of course, you have.

But if you're like me, you have a really hard time trying to find out the names of the pieces.

A couple of weeks ago, while watching 'Happy Endings' and googling "Happy Endings Jane jacket', I found the site to solve all my problems.

It's called Worn on TV and it itemizes it all.

See? I found the jacket I was drooling over! Isn't it gorgeous?

Image Source
I now know that the jacket is way out of my price range and can just let it go.

This site has so many shows, including 'New Girl', 'How I Met Your Mother', 'Vampire Diaries', etc. You can search by episode or by character. It's just great.

And if they've found an exact match, it'll link you to the site to buy it. Or, if you're cheap like me, a comparable substitute.

Image Source
Original sweater from 'New Girl': $75. Cheaper, similar version from Forever 21: $19.80

Next time you're bored and looking to get inspired, check it out!

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Young, But Smart

Have I mentioned before that Dan through a massive coup and became the home owner's association president? And when I say "massive coup", I mean no one else wanted it and he volunteered. The only reason I get to call it a "coup" is because Dan believes it will be much easier to get the design for his MASSIVE shop/garage passed if he's the president. But that's just between you and me...

And since Dan is now the president, you know what that makes me, right? The First Lady! And like any First Lady, it means I'm in charge of all the parties and such.

As a nice gesture as the newly elected First Lady, I volunteered our house for the next meeting, which was to be a pot luck six months away.  

That was six months ago. Uh oh.

Things you should know:
  1. I've never hosted a pot luck. I've hosted a party before, but that's easy. You know that you need to supply everything. But with a pot luck, you have no idea what people will bring. I didn't even know how many people would come! Am I supposed to supply wine? Couldn't I just get by with a cooler full of sodas?
  2. Everyone in our neighborhood is old. I believe all of them are old enough to be my parents and a large percentage are old enough to be my grandparents.
It's probably not that big of a deal, but especially through my job, I've learned that it can be so incredibly hard to get people to take you seriously when you're so much younger than them. This "respect your elders" thing has gotten out of hand, guys. It doesn't mean you know everything and I know nothing.

Anyway, as you can clearly tell, it gets under my skin. While there's not much I can do about it, the one thing I can do is plan an awesome outfit. I'm not exaggerating when I say I've been contemplating my outfit for this stupid party for weeks. 
Here's what I came up with: 

Young, But Powerful

I think it's a good balance of young, trendy pieces and classic, pretty pieces. 

Hopefully, it will help endear me to all the old ladies. That is until I open my mouth, of course. I'll let you know how it goes...

Monday, May 13, 2013

A Bit of a Splurge: Beauty Haul

In case you haven't noticed, I've been really getting into beauty blogs and tutorials lately (like this one, and this one, and this one, too). At 26 years old, I finally feel like I'm starting to understand and grasp all the tiny tubs and tubes that sit on my vanity. 

And because of this, I want to share what I've learned and how I've changed up my routines and products.

- Wearing perfume. I know this is cheesy and girly, but stick with me. Someday, I want my kids to know what I smell like. I want them to smell something on a breeze and have it remind them of me. So, even though I'm nowhere near actually having kids, I wanted to develop a signature scent. A nice scent that I knew would be available for a long time. I began searching for a high-quality perfume, which was quite difficult given how allergic I can be to some scents, and fell in love with this one.


Chance by Chanel. Yes, it was expensive. And yes, it smells as gorgeous as it looks. Light and floral, yet very clean. I feel so fancy and classy when I wear it.

- Having proper make up brushes. I hate to admit it, but I used those cheap little applicators that come with products for waaaaay too long. However, over time and a couple of gift sets that my mom gave me, I've built quite an arsenal.

I'm going to write this in all caps because it is just that important: IT IS SO MUCH EASIER TO APPLY MAKE UP WHEN YOU USE THE PROPER TOOLS. It goes on better, the lines are cleaner, and it will take less time.

- Wear lip color. In watching a lot of youtube make up videos, I've noticed how much better people look on camera with lip stick. Normal, uncolored lips just don't show up well in pictures or film. See that picture of me in the top right corner of the blog? I am wearing one of the brightest, reddest lipstick you will ever see, but it's barely noticeable, right? Because of that, I've been on a bit of a lip stick kick lately.

My favorites are Revlon's "Love that Pink" and "Romantic" (apparently, I am a Revlon girl). And yes, I am forced to reapply one or two times a day, but I think it's worth it.

- Filling in eyebrows. I will admit that this one is more of an optional item in my make up routine, it only makes it in when I'm not crunched for time. However, check out the subtle difference.

The brow on the left is filled in, while the right isn't. The unfilled one doesn't look bad, but the filled one just looks better, doesn't it? I can't really explain why, but it does. I just fill it in with some powder and a brush, no pencil for me. Actually, I was an idiot a couple months back and thought I could pull off bronzer (no, no I cannot), but it's the same color as my hair, so it does the job nicely on my eyebrows. Just find a cheap eye shadow the same color as your brows and have at it! 

- Carrying a make up bag. I've completely given up on make up lasting all day. Mascara and eyeliner, sure. But concealer and lipstick? Nope. Just an urban legend. I've thrown in the towel and accepted the fact that if I want to be made up all day, it will require maintenance. And maintenance requires me carrying around stuff all day.

My purse make up bag is small and only contains a couple of things, mainly the stuff that I manage to rub off during the day: a lip stain, lip balm, a concealer, and a mascara. Just duplicates of my favorites. Oh, and some essentials I should have always been carrying around like bobby pins, a compact mirror, safety pins, and band-aids.

- Tangle Teezer. It's a handheld brush that doesn't rip your hair out when you have tangles. It's just that simple. The bristles are of multiple heights and bend so that they don't get stuck in knots. My hair is definitely reaping the benefits of not being tugged and torn twice a day. It's is expensive at roughly $18, but hopefully it will save me money on things like detangler and deep conditioner. Oh, and it really reduced how static my hair gets. Much less static-y now!

- Urban Decays Naked Palettes. If you want to the best colors in eye shadows, buy one of these palettes. They are highly pigmented, easily blendable, and coordinate with the other colors in the palette It is a bit of an investment, but if you're like me, you will never need a color that this palette doesn't include. I had the Naked 2 palette for over a year before I decided I needed to have the Naked palette as well.

I don't think I'll ever find a need to buy another eyeshadow. Unless it's Halloween or something, maybe...

Just a few changes to my routine has made me feel more put together. More confident. And yes, it probably does add up to be a good chunk of change, but I consider it more of an investment. An investment in myself.

Friday, May 10, 2013

Fan of Friday: Week of 5/10/2013

Continuing my trend of falling for British youtubers, meet Sprinkle of Glitter, aka, Louise. 

She is the combination of Zoella and Tanya Burr, with a whole lot of blogger mixed in.  Her main focus is make up, like Tanya, but she does a lot more product reviews and less tutorials, like Zoella. And since she's married with a little girl, there's some home and baby stuff thrown in for good measure as well.

She's got two channels. Her make up and beauty channel (here) and her chatty, everyday sort of channel (here). 

This girl is on it, too. She blogs almost everyday. Videos at least once a week. Product reviews and recommendations, make up industry behind-the-scenes, motherhood and daily life posts. There's a wide variety of topics to enjoy.

Currently, I'm weirdly obsessed with Louise and I'm slowly working my way through the archives of her blog and channels. Definitely a great way to kill an afternoon.

Thursday, May 9, 2013

SpiderCat! SpiderCat! Does Whatever a SpiderCat Does!

Rusty's new favorite thing is to hang out under the sofa, lay on his back, and skitter along by crawling along the bottom of the sofa.

There's no great story here. I just think it's adorable. Anytime I hear the weird little scratching noise, I peer under and his eyes are so black and wild.

I love that weird little cat so much.

Oh, and here's the song that my title is from. I bet it gets stuck in your head all day.

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Project House Update: State Love

It's Pinterest Challenge time, yet again! That time of year where you get off your butt and actually make something that you pinned. 

This time I was inspired by a couple of my pins of state art. One pin involved hammering nails into a piece of wood to form the state border and city location and weaving string in between. I don't have time for that and I have two cats that would never have allowed it to survive. The second pin was just a drawn out line of a state and a glitter heart over their hometown. I liked the idea, but come on, where's the challenge in that?

I kind of combined the ideas and came up with this:

A painted image of Arizona on a piece of wood with a heart over Tucson. More to it than just tracing the outline, yet not as tedious as nailing a million tiny little nails.

My supplies included a $10 board from Michaels, some left over house paint for the background, constrasting paint for the state (I was originally going to use turquoise, but I thought that might be too bright and limited my options on places to hang it), stencil brushes ($5 at Michaels), painters tape, a piece of cardboard, a box cutter or exacto knife, and a map of my state.

I placed my board on a magazine on a piece of newpaper. The magazine lets you get paint to completely cover the edges without worrying about it sticking (assuming your piece of wood is bigger than a magazine).

Give it one or two coats of your background shade. I used "Polar Bear", the color we use for all our ceilings.

Create your stencil. I taped the printed out map onto a thin piece of cardboard and traced the border with my box cutter. The lines aren't the smoothest, but if you want very clean lines, I would suggest painter's tape, thinner stencil material, and moving to either Wyoming or Colorado. Remember to do this on a cutting board!

Then, tape your homemade stencil in place., including a tape heart over your home.

Break out your stencil brush and have at it. I ended up using a small sample pot of paint from one of the grays we contemplated painting in the guest room. I just love gray on crisp, clean white.

Voila! Art! The edges are a little ragged, but I like it that way. It makes it more rustic.

Add your hanging hook and find it a home!

Here's where it ended up, in the guest bedroom. The theme of the room is slowly evolving into travel and geography, which I think is pretty kitsch given that the room's meant for our traveling friends and family.

Ignore how it looks off-center on the wall. I need to find another small piece to hang with it. Hopefully, one that will pick up some of the turquoise accent color in the room.

Monday, May 6, 2013

My First 10K

I was all ready to proudly retell the story of my first 10K. Of how the training had paid off. Of how I was able to run more of it than I thought I could. Of how my time would be better than I thought I would do.

But I can't.

None of that happened.

It was probably one of the worst and most painful experiences of my entire life.

Let's start at the beginning.

I had been training for several weeks. Running several times a week, but with the drastic increase in temperatures in the last couple of weeks, I hadn't been able to run the long runs I had planned. Knowing this, I had accepted just being happy finishing the 10K. If I could run the first 5K of it, I would call it a win.

Morning of the race, I was a ball of nerves. Usually my mom runs races with me, but this was my first time solo. And at my longest distance ever. I was almost giddy with anticipation.

My number was 259. I kept joking that as long as I was #259 or better in my age group, I would call it a win.

The first two miles were almost easy, given that it was all uphill. I ran along side a woman who works at the same company as me, but we've never really interacted before. At mile 2, she either picked up her pace or I got slower and there gradually became a gap between us.

I managed to run all the way to the turn around point, Mile 3.1, and finally took a walk break. My left knee was starting to bug me, but it didn't really hurt. It just felt like it was annoyed to be running, if that made any sense. The kind of pain you just push through and eventually it stops bugging you. You can at least ignore it.

At about the same time, my stomach started to bug me, too. I would run for a bit, but the sinking feeling that my stomach was becoming angry and would make a mess of me if I didn't take a break. So, I would alternate running until my stomach spoke up and walk until it calmed down. I even pushed through and ran the majority of Mile 4.

As soon as I stepped across the line for Mile 5, I stopped for a walk break and knew I was in trouble. My knee was no longer just an annoyance, it really f'in hurt. A lot. I walked for a bit, hoping that was all it needed.

After a couple of minutes, I started to run again. And by started, I mean I took one step and thought my leg was going to give out under me. My left knee, which up until that point had never, ever given me any trouble, was now basically useless.

This is where I started to panic. What are you supposed to do at that point? I was roughly a mile from the finish line and I could barely walk. I did, I kept slowly walking, but every step was pure agony and getting worse with each one.

Five minutes later and probably 100 feet, I texted Dan. No response.

Another ten minutes and probably another 100 feet, I called him. I told him I blew my knee out. He said, "Ok." "OK?!?!?" I shouted back and just hung up. He wanted me to tell him what to do. I wanted him to step up and save me because I was on the side of a major road, in pain, getting passed by progressively slower walkers. No sidewalks or side streets to stop on. My limp had gotten so bad I had to stop walking every couple of dozen steps to rub it and people kept asking me if I was OK. If I needed them to send help when they got to the finish line. I greatly considered it, but my pride kept me limping along.

The good runners were now coming back passed me, burning off their extra energy because 6.2 miles wasn't enough for them. A friend of my mom's stopped to encourage me. It took all I had not to burst into tears.

I was about a half mile from the finish line. Over the last big hill came my knight in shining yellow T-shirt. Dan had come walking along the course to find me. By the time he reached me, I was a big, sobbing mess. A full blown panic attack. I didn't want to have to go back to the finish line, with all the runners who actually have functioning knees and decent times. I tried to rip my number off so no one would know that I was a big, fat failure. We could hobble back to the car and pretend it never happened.

Unfortunately and fortunately, my mom's friend found me again. She convinced me to keep going. To just cross the line. For that last quarter mile, the three of us slowly hobbled toward the finish line.

Dan walked me across it. The timer displayed "1:37". I don't know my official time. I don't know how I placed. I refuse to look. I don't need to, it'll just make me sad. I set the bar low at finishing the race and, technically, that's what I did.

The big question now is how this will affect my training. This race was just supposed to be a stepping stone to the race I really want to run in September. An eight mile run, all on pavement. Even though it's four months away, how can I even attempt it? It doesn't seem like a realistic goal anymore, at least not this year.

As I lie on the sofa, icing my knee, I can't imagine it happening, but who knows? If I have to put it off for another year, it's not the end of the world. And at least I got to cross one goal off my resolutions list...

Friday, May 3, 2013

Fan of Friday: Week of 5/3/2013

For some reason, my subconscious thinks it's British. I could watch youtube videos all day long about absolutely nothing by anyone British and I would be completely content.

Over a year ago, I mentioned my first youtube subscription. Her name is Tanya Burr and she's a British make-up artist who does amazing make up tutorials. I credit her completely with my makeup transformation over the past year (I should write about that sometime...)

Anyway, I love her and she's amazing and she's got all these great youtube/in real life friends who also post videos. (Sidenote: It's amazing to me to think that being a youtuber is actually a career. I know making and editing videos can take a lot of work, but still.)

One of her friends that I've begun following is named Zoella. She's got two youtube channels (her main one here and her day to day vlog here) and a blog.

She focuses more on which products she likes and what clothes she's recently bought and shopping with her friends. It's very hard to describe her. I don't think I can do it without making it seem fairly shallow (and if she were an American beauty blogger, I probably wouldn't be such a fan), but she's very cute and down to Earth and tells it like it is.

So, if you'd like to kill some time listening to British accents or learning about new beauty products, she's a very good resource.

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Pair of Potatoes

My sister and my dad play Borderlands together. This is what I see, all day, every Sunday.

Usually with a lot of screaming of, "I died! Come save me!"

It's really cute watching the two of them. They take it so seriously, but most of the time, their strategy is terrible. They must each die at least a dozen times a piece.

Still fun to watch them, though.