Friday, July 30, 2010

You are the worst kind...

You are high maintenance that thinks you are low maintenance! -Harry Burns

Mr. R says I am high maintenance. I say I am low maintenance. I am sticking to my story because I take short showers and can be ready in 20 minutes, unless ironing is involved.

He says no make-up and ironing have nothing to do with my high maintenance status. He says my inability to close cabinet doors, put the cap on the toothpaste, charge my phone, and pump gas make me high maintenance.

I say those things are my cute character flaws. And that he is just lucky that I fell head over heels for him. Because well, Harry Burns needs his Sally Albright...

Picture of the day:I made Pioneer Woman's Beef & Bean Burritos for dinner. They were awesome! And I ate them with sour cream and guac and the condiments were NOT on the side!

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Welcome to earth Gavin!

Meet the littlest Republican we know.
Gavin Alaimo
Born July 20, 2010

Until we have a few little Republicans of our own running around Mr. R. will have to extoll all his political know-how on this little guy.

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Life's too short not to eat cheese grits...

Our first fall in Florida, Mr. R and I were invited to a campaign dinner with Congressman Mica. I was incredibly nervous and did not want to go. We knew literally NO ONE at the time and I was convinced the dinner would be long, awkward, and boring. But being the good Republican wife I put on my best black dress and shoes and prepared for the worst.

We were seated with people 20 years our senior who eyed us suspiciously and said NOTHING! Awkward does not even begin to describe how I was feeling. Soon it was time to order. I had settled on crab cakes, but had not selected a side. The woman to my right said..."Honey, cheese grits rock! You gotta try the grits. Life's too short not too!" I laughed, took her advice, and ordered my first ever plate of cheese grits.

That woman saved me. She opened up the lines of communication at our table and made the stoic republicans we were seated with, crack their first smiles of the night. As dinner was served, conversation flowed around the table and Mr. R and I started to be accepted by our fellow dinner guests.

By the time the plates were cleared Mr. R had made business contacts, the YRs had a Mica event on the calendar, and my love of cheese grits was confirmed.
Tonight Mr. R and I ate a recreation of that meal. Crabcakes (ala Costco), cheese grits (with cayenne pepper), and mango salsa, (thank you Trader Joes).
If you haven't given grits a try remember Helen's advice, "Life's too short not to eat cheese grits!".

(Almost) Wordless Wednesday:

New kicks!
Day 15: 4 miles and only 1 blister
(not bad!)

FYI: I am an overpronator so NIKE Air with Arch support is my BFF when it comes to running shoes.

le tired...

Today I came home from work and complained of extreme exhaustion. I collapsed on our beloved chaise lounge and proclaimed Mr. R. should just leave me here to die or sleep like Rip Van Winkle. After I got over myself, I opened my computer to read this blog. Our friend Sherree is participating in the world race and I realized what it really means to be tired, hungry, and blessed.

As I sit here in my air conditioning, enjoying running water, and a full fridge... I have forgotten the life lessons my parents so wanted me to remember.
  • I am very fortunate to have a husband who loves and respects me.
  • I am very blessed to live in a home that I own and can currently afford.
  • I live in the greatest nation in the world where I can express my opinions and choose my religion.
  • I have a job that provides enough money to live on and health benefits.
  • I have clothes and shoes that I can wear.
  • I can buy groceries and feed my family.
  • I have been able to save money this year.
  • I have God in my life and can take comfort that he has plan for me that will being me hope and provide for my future.
So even though I am le tired and way hot and I smell of sweat and brackish water....I am beyond blessed and grateful for my life.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

1,600 meters = 1 mile

Today I was at the YMCA with my rising 6th graders and as I glided through the water swimming laps numbers 1 - 64 I had to keep telling myself to just keep swimming. I felt like Dory in Finding Nemo. Its' hot here peeps. And that means the water is hot and the air is stagnant and I feel virtually zapped of all available energy. I found myself wishing for swimming to be easier, for running to be easier, for work to be easier, for life in general to be... just a bit easier!

Wouldn't it be great to get exactly what I wanted for just one day?

I mentioned my thoughts to Mr. R and he reminded me of Henry the 8th, (we have been watching the TV show The Tudors recently), who had everything he ever wanted at his fingertips. And he was a spoiled, miserable, gluttonous, pig of a man.

I really hate it when Mr. R is right, but he does have a point. Work is supposed to be hard so that we may take pride the salary we are paid for our endeavors. Exercise is supposed to be challenging so that we can continuously strive to be stronger, better and faster. And take pride in what we have accomplished. Love is supposed to be difficult at times so that we cherish how sweet it is when times are good.
On a random note, I made Pioneer Woman's comfort meatballs and classic mac & cheese for dinner tonight. I think I ate every single activity point I earned today, but they were delicious. The pictures don't do the food justice.
I think these meatballs could make Paula Dean cry,
and they aren't even fried!

Monday, July 26, 2010

7/26: My day in numbers

4: Only four days of marine science are left! As much as I have loved my days of biking, beaching, and swimming I am ready for my summer to begin. A few weeks sans middle schoolers sounds like heaven right now!

3: This is me post three miles.

2: Two new pairs of Nike's were purchased today. I am loving the new arch support line. The coolest part is that my last pair logged over 400 miles. They served me well!
1: New issue of the economist. Mr. R gets them every Monday (this was his b-day present this year). And once the magazine is opened he has no attention span for anything else. Who knew the global economy was so fascinating?

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Sunday, that's my fun day...

Today was a blank slate. No events to attend, nothing on the calendar, no pressing errands or needs. We slept in, enjoyed a swim in the ocean, took the time to actually make lunch, and drank daiquiris in the cool breeze of our air conditioner.
The laundry, dishes, and dusting can wait. I have TV to watch and a husband to cuddle with.

Photo Note: Simon & Sophie received a few belated b-day gifts including a new hedgehog, red dragon (with 16 squeekers!) and organic molasses and peanut-butter cookies).

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Streakin' on Saturday

3 mile walk/run (Thank you planet fitness for having a giant fan above your treadmills! You made running on a 99 degree day possible!)

To prove that I am doing other things besides running here is a run down of my Saturday:
  • Spending a ridiculous amount of money on groceries @ Costco
  • Unpacking and sorting and washing and folding
  • Quality time with the pupsters (they got new birthday toys!)
  • Vacation planning. (We spent a few hours at Barnes and Noble scouring the England & London sections planning out our days. I am getting more and more excited as each day passes!)
  • Tudors Season II (Can I just say that Anne Boleyn got what she deserved!)

Friday, July 23, 2010

It's great to be home!

I missed these guys so much!

It is always hard to say goodbye to my mom, but I think knowing I will see her in November and again in December makes it easier.

Tonight we celebrated my arrival home with PSYCH on hulu, couscous with peas, and ice-cream. I should also mention that I have been up since 4:00AM! I am off to bed and to take my contacts out... I fear I may have the crazy irritated red eye thing going on.

Please allow me...

a few moments to brag about weight watchers and exercise.

It is said a thousand times over that the only way to be successful in weight loss is through diet and exercise. But as we know this is much easier said than done. After a month of disappointing visits to the scale I decided to go back to my roots. (Filling foods, interval workouts, and not eating my activity points.)

And as predicted by science and past practice. I lost weight!

I am down 6 pounds since June.

...also, the running streak continues. Today is day 11, (I took two days off in packing and travel), I ran a slow and steady three miles followed by lots of stretching and ab work.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Welcome to the beach house!

My mom loves the beach, more specifically the ocean and white sand blasted shells. She has been in the process of updating her living room and I was home to help purchase and arrange a few new pieces to transform her house into a relaxing beach oasis.
Here is a run down of a few things we accomplished this week:

1. Purchase new couch. (Mom's couch was 15 years old and a bit dated. Meet the new coastal inspired couch)
2. Replace recliner with chair (I am in love with this chair. The stripes add great color contrast to the room).
3. Create accent wall. (Mom was afraid the blue couch on the blue wall would be too much. Insert stripes! Thanks Todd for painting them.)
4. Purchase beach paintings and accents (We were most successful at Marshalls and Cape May Wicker)
5. Find new lamps (Don't you just love the green plantation shutter lamp? Bonus: it holds DVDs!)
6. Create a gallery wall. (Easily created with painters tape, a hammer, and a level)

Still to do....
1. Find a beach inspired wall clock for above the mantle
2. Purchase large shells for the mantle
3. Find/Make twine covered candles for mantle
4. New table runner for dining room table.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Day 10: 6 miles, decorating, and a party

  • Today is day 10 in the running challenge and I was feeling really strong on the treadmill this morning. In my original challenge I said no less than 1 mile and no more than 5, but 6 felt great today.
  • I am still doing the intervals, especially when I add distance. Today I was pretty consistent with a 3 minute run to 1 minute walk. (I was trying not to look @ the clock on the treadmill so I just went by songs on the ipod. Run a whole song, walk one minute and then run a new song)
  • I am really loving the Dog Days are Over by Florence & the Machine. Great song for speed work :)
  • My mom was bitten by the decorating bug so we are making her living room into a coastal oasis. I mentioned the purchase of a couch and chair yesterday, it was delivered today. She also had stripes painted on an adjacent wall to amp up the beachy vibe.
  • We are on the hunt for a few more items to add to her gallery wall. So far we have found one black and white photo, 4 mosaic pictures of shells, one sea fan, and one painting I refer to as BIG FISH.
  • Lastly, tonight I attended my first purse party. So in a few weeks I will be sporting an monogrammed black and white clutch. I just love monogrammed things. If only I could get my hands on some monogrammed pillowcases for our bedroom.
  • Only one full day left in Jersey. I can't believe how fast this week has flown by!

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Days 8 and 9:

Day 8: One of the perks of coming home is that my mom belongs to an INCREDIBLE gym with a great schedule of classes. This morning I opted for a stretching class, "on the ball", where you stretch your core and legs a giant exercise ball and Zumba. On the ball was great for my tired legs, but Zumba was a clear favorite.
Moving on to running, post Zumba I ran a quick three miles with a 1-minute walk break every 4 minutes. I think the walk breaks got me through.

Day 9: Spin class! I know I promised you 21 days of running, but I had the opportunity to take a 1 on 1 spin class today with an excellent instructor. Thanks so much Kathleen! She was fantastic and even included arm and ab work in her class.

In my head I planned to run a quick 2 miles later in the day, but I ended up furniture shopping with my Mom, (she is the proud owner of a new beachy chair and couch!) and catching up on DVRed episodes of Drop Dead Diva.

Happy Mother's Day 2010 (July ed.)

In the Fisler household Mother's Day is spent down shore. Specifically on the Ocean City boardwalk. Mac and Manco Pizza is eaten. Followed by Khors ice-cream. We visit the Islander for cool wall art, stop in Terry Ivory for the jewels, and most importantly have our picture taken in a black and white photobooth. These are traditions that cannot be broken. And they are memories that will never be erased. I do realize that the calendar currently places us in July, the 19th to be exact, but as you know I did not make it to Jersey on (the real) Mother's day. But who says you can't celebrate your Mom any day of the year. Below are a few (many) more pictures of our favorite place in Jersey :)

The times they are a changin'

I grew up in a fantastic little town in a great neighborhood, with an amazing support group of friends and family cheering me on. They celebrated swim meets, graduations, my engagement, my marriage and now they keep in touch through facebook, my mom, and the occasional visit. As you can tell from my three year Jersey hiatus, I was totally slacking on the visiting part...

Tonight I caught up with my two favorite families, the Cubbages and the Toudys. When I left NJ for DC (for grad school and to marry Mr. R), I wanted time to stop. Growing up I baby-sat for these families and now Amanda has graduated college, Liz is heading to Stevens for an engineering degree. Josh is getting MARRIED! (What???) and Evan is a high school senior. I can't believe how much they have grown, how they have changed, and how amazing they are as psuedo-adults. I also can't believe that now I am cheering them on as they make the big decisions about grad-school, jobs, majors, and marriage.

I feel so old! I didn't think getting older meant having to realize that other people get old as well. The times really are a changin' Thank goodness the houses still look the same even if the people who live in them don't.

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Day 7: 3 miles, H&M, and visits

  • Dear H&M, I miss you and your inexpensive designer mock-ups. Your polka-dot tops make my knees week and I am falling head over heels for your floral print dresses and parisian inspired tops. I need you to further our cash based courtship and move to Jacksonville where I can visit you more often. I know this means that I will no longer be able to see my other loves such as Express and GAP, but I promise if you give Jacksonville a chance, I will forget about those other stores and give you 100% shopping commitment.
  • In running news....this morning I was all set for a 3 mile run, but my calves and shins were not having it. On the treadmill I powered through 2 miles, but by the 2.25 y shins and calves were screaming and I was in need of a good stretch. The gym I am using this week has actual stretch machines with a segment of stretches you do in a 15 minute period so I decided to give that a whirl. After stretching and a break for an ab workout, I was able to run the last mile and call an end to my workout... so in short, the streak is still going strong.
  • Visits with friends: I must admit that I don't go back home to NJ very often. My family has no problem traveling to Florida to see us so Mr. R and I do not find a need to head up to Jersey very often. The downside of this is we don't see our old friends and neighbors nearly as much as we should. Today I had the pleasure of visiting the Mikus family. They are truly my seconds parents. They have been their for all of my big life moments and it just felt like home as I stepped through their door. It is sometimes so nice to step back in time for a bit. The Mikus house always reminds me of high school and Michelle's wedding in 2001. Its hard to believe Michelle has been married for 9 years! And that miss Katie is turning 6!

Shopping Saturday...

I have one of those Mom's who is simply awesome... fashion conscious, etiquette aware, shopping savvy, and can spot a sale or bargain from miles away. She also gets me to spend too much money! We had a great Saturday hitting the sales at shops I don't have or do not get to go to in Florida. Hello H&M, Louie, and Vera... The good news is I will be outfitted for fall with new fun pieces and I got to spend an entire day shopping with a well honed stylist. I swear my Mom missed her calling. I need her to be with me at all times and put colors together... or at least start taking better notes on her combinations, so I can recreate them at home.

In running news I finished day 6 with 5 miles. I am still following the Jeff Galloway method for running and walking, but I have my own twist. Ever mile I walk the first quarter and sprint the last quarter. I tell myself this is making my faster, but really the times are about even. We shall see if this makes a difference in the long run.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Day 5: Greetings & Salutations

I had to say goodbye to these guys this morning. It's only for a week so they should't miss me too much. In fact I am sure Simon and Sophie have claimed my side of the bed.

As soon as my plane touched down I was greeted by:
  • Mama Republicana (Mr. R's mom) She was kind enough to drive me home.
  • Isabel (my Mama's 10 year old baby). We call her my sister.
  • My Mom
  • My old room
  • Best dinner ever (Serafina's stromboli!)

Crazy Thursday:

  • CPR class than thunderstorms that made us run in from the water.
  • Torrential downpour at dismissal. (Gave me some serious crazy hair!)
  • Payday and check deposits without any ID...the bank lady looked at me very suspiciously. It could have been due to my missing 1/2 a flipflop and rocking crazy hair!
  • Mr. R on TV! (Lucky for him I picked out his outfit. The yellow tie totally works.)
  • 1 mile swim (1600 meters were owned by me!)
  • Takeout (ala Arby's for dinner)
  • Watching Psych, (thank you hulu for being my DVR.)
  • All packed... except for a few undies that are still in the wash.
  • Off to bed soon. 4:30AM comes early.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Day 3: Three miles, a burger for Mr. R, & great kids!

Today was crazy hot. My car was registering 91 degrees before we even took off on the bikes for our 5 hour bike ride through Princess Place. Thankfully I had a great group of kids today who loved the water and were up for the challenge.
(Don't worry nervous Nellies, we hydrate like crazy!)

I was not feeling my three miles this afternoon, so I mixed it up with a 1-mile run (treadmill), 1 mile jog (elliptical), and 1 mile climb (stair-master). I decided mileage is mileage and all that matters is that I am workin' it.

Mr. R requested a burger for dinner tonight and being the wannabe foodie that I am, I created a burger just for him. BBQ, bacon, blue cheese, beer burgers. Yes, they have ALOT going on.
Burger: 1/2# ground beef, 1/4 bottle of beer, 5 drops of worcestershire sauce. (Combine and make 5 slider patties. Place on your George Foreman or grill).

Slider buns: Find small dinner rolls at your grocery store, add tsp. of BBQ sauce to each side of the roll. Top with blue cheese butter, sauteed red onion, and leftover bacon slices.
Blue cheese butter: 2 Tbs of blue cheese, 1/3 Tbs of butter. Mix and spread on your slider bun.
I think I am in LOVE with the Mr. R BBQ BURGER!
I made my final changes to my packing list and all that is left in laundry and the actual act of packing itself. I am bringing the mac with me, so you just might see a few updates while I am gone.

Happy Hump Day Peeps!
Tomorrow afternoon starts my vacation :)