Well, that's the subject of 99% of my posts. Big surprise.
So it's been a while since I've had a proper chance to post anything here. The month of December has gotten away from me and left me little time to get to do everything I want to. I was gone for a week or so at the begging of the month and then have been trying to get ready for Christmas. This year, for the first time, I'm hosting it at my house. I've got a beautiful new home and I want to show it off a bit. My parents and sister are coming, as well as Ken's step-mother. I'm kind of excited and petrified to be doing this. I'm not much of a cook (though I try) and I've never tried cooking for more than three people before. I think I have everything I need for Christmas day, though I'm sure I'll remember something while I'm doing prep work on Christmas Eve. I need to find out how late the grocery store is open on Friday.
The beginning of the month we spent on a cruise to the Caribbean again. This is the second year in a row we've done it and I have to say it was spectacular. It all turned out to be much better than the weeks leading up to it. Ken and I have a couple of big fights about everything about the cruise. I felt he was overplanning and overbooking things and I was freaking out. All he would talk about for months and months leading up to the cruise was the cruise and I was feeling burned out over it and it hadn't even arrived. This year we did things a little differently. We traveled with friends. The original plan was to go on the cruise with two couples we know, but one ended up backing out. We made up for it by meeting a bunch of cool people on board. This was really a different experience for us because on the last cruise, Ken was determined to go to a couple social events and meet up with people he'd met online, but he chickened out at the last minute. Having another couple with us definitely helped us go through with it this year. And I'm really glad. We met a bunch of people we wouldn't have talked to otherwise. There was one couple that Ken had met on one of this chat boards that he wanted to meet, but they never showed up to any of our Happy Hours. On the last day, we were talking to one of the guys we met and the names of the people came up that Ken wanted to meet. Doug said he saw them and gave a quick description. It turned out these guys were a couple we saw all the time, every single day. They ended up being a little too afraid to approach anyone, much like Ken and I last year. We ran into them late on the last night of the cruise and Ken made a point of introducing himself. It's too bad we found them so late. They seemed really nice.
The weather on the cruise was great, though not as good as it was last year. We arrived in Miami the day before the cruise and I had no desire to change into shorts. In fact, I wished I didn't leave my coat in the car at the airport. It was chilly. The first day at sea was a little chillier than I would have liked, but the further south we got, the warmer it got and I got my chance to lay out in the sun. The next to last day we had some pretty crappy weather, but otherwise, I have no complaints.
I tried watching what I ate this time around, and I think I did an okay job. I could have done much better, but I could have done much worse. I ate a lot of salads, fruits and vegetables. Naturally I had dessert, too, but I tried not to over do it. My downfall every night was dinner. There was more bread at the table than I knew what to do with. Bread is a HUGE weakness for me. If I avoided the bread, I probably would have felt much better about how I ate all week.
To counter balance all the bread, I made it my number one priority to hit the gym each day on vacation. Just a little background first. As I've mentioned previously, I fucked my feet up overdoing things on the treadmill. While I still haven't made it to the doctor (I will, I will, I promise), it was pretty clear I needed to stay clear of the treadmill to give my feet time to heal. The elliptical is something that I could do that has minimal impact on my feet, so I set my mind of attempting it. Because I'm a bit of an uncoordinated oaf, I didn't want to try the elliptical when there were a lot of people around. I went the day after Thanksgiving and found the gym pretty empty, so I tried it then for the first time. I found it pretty easy to keep my coordination, only I didn't realize how tough the machine was going to be for someone who has never tried it before. I was ready to quit at 8 minutes, but I pushed through to 20 minutes. I think my big problem was setting the level much higher than I could actually do. I went back two days later determined to make the machine feel bad for making me feel bad. This time, though, I was ready to quit at 4 minutes. But I pushed through that. I was determined to at least hit the 20 minutes I hit the previous visit. And I did. And I pushed though that making it a full 50 minutes. And that was all the time I had pre-vacation for working out. So the first morning on the ship, I found the gym, hopped on and only did 35 minutes. The machines all had signs on them that said to please limit your time to 20 minutes. So I cheated a little. I went back that evening and did a little bit more. I hit the gym every day on vacation, most days hitting it twice and most visits doing 65 minutes a pop. I still have a little bit of awkwardness on the machine from time to time, but I really got the hang of it. My gym here at home doesn't have too many machines, but I've been lucky enough to snag one every time I've been since vacation has ended. The gym is moving in February to a new, bigger location and I hope that means more machines.
Even though I've been pretty active lately, my weight is just a little higher than I want it to be. I'm pretty convinced that I'm building new muscle though. My fupa doesn't feel nearly as big as it should considering what I'm seeing on the scale and I'm feeling different muscles in my legs now that I didn't know existed. In fact, for the first half of the cruise, I had trouble walking down stairs because of these formerly dormant muscles. It's true. Even now I really feel things when walking up or down stairs. I need to get back doing the 30 Day Workout on the Wii again.
Today I was off from work. I had a cleaning scheduled for the dentist. I went in with a decent attitude and left depressed as hell. I need to get some dental work done and it's not that it was a surprise, but it just kind of felt (financially) overwhelming. I had a tooth crowned two years ago that has been bothering me ever since. It needs a root canal and I've been putting it off. That needs to be done sooner rather than later. Also, I have two other teeth that need crowns. Just the thought of the portion of this that insurance isn't going to cover is making me ill. And it didn't help that the endodontist my dentist referred me to said that they don't deal with insurance AT ALL. It's the amount due up front and then I can try to reclaim from insurance. That kind of set me off. I feel like we've been spending way too much money lately and it scares me. I feel like we're starting to build up debt after digging ourselves out from under it completely. I always getting weird when it comes to finances. I'm always convinced we're going to end up homeless and penniless and living in a cardboard box.
And speaking of running up debt, Ken and I were out shopping tonight and we ran into our old next door neighbor at the mall. He filled us in on what was going on at our old house. I already knew some of it, but not all of it. The couple that bought our house (last day of April) broke up in August after one last huge fight. Initially she moved out and he stayed. He said she's planning on buying out his share of the house and moving back in with roommates. In the meantime, he's moved out and the house is unoccupied. I can't even imagine. If your relationship is fragile enough that you're on the verge of breaking up a couple months later, why do you buy a house together? Personally, I don't care. They bought my old house, which enabled me to buy my new one. But still.
I know I had other (just as uninteresting) topics on the brain, but my brain is shutting down and I think I need to go to bed. In the next few days, I hope to post some pictures here from vacation. And in case I just don't find any time later this week, Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays to everyone (anyone?) reading this drivel.