101 in Never Gonna Happen

Hot damn was I excited about 101 in 1001 when I started (which apparently is a post I wrote on an old blog). And OMG did March 23, 2013 sound soooo far away! Now with 68 days left, I’m 68% complete. Well, 101 in 1001, GFY!

A few weeks ago, I realized #48 “share a magical NYE midnight kiss” was not going to happen. I figured with three shots, it was a given. While my New Year’s Eves have gotten progressively better, none of them have involved a certain someone special.

Maybe I’ll meet him this year. Maybe not only before March 23, but before the ONE day of rain we’re likely to have in the desert between now and then so I can cross off #74 “kiss in the rain.” WTF is that? I blame growing up on Dawson’s Creek.

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So, what’s a girl to do? A 68-day blitz spent running around doing silly things that were important to 26-year-old me? A new list? A newfound disregard for all things list-like? Yeah right. But, I think I’m just going to stick with my resolutions for now.

101 Check In

So, I did my math wrong and was convinced today was the halfway point of my 101 in 1001 challenge. Close, but no cigar. Either way, I’m doing an update.

According to my official checklist at the Day Zero Project, I have 506 days left and…drumroll please…I have completed 55% of the items on my list!  I scanned through it this morning and here are some highlights:

Things that are intimidating me even though I have 506 days left to complete them:
Travel out of the country.
Write a novel.
Sing karaoke.
Vlog.
Learn conversational Spanish.

Things I want to do again:
Have sex in public.
Complete a triathlon

Things I did just because they were on the list:
Become a personal trainer.
Make bread pudding.
Eat at Pizzeria Bianco.

Things that I thought I could pull off for 1001 days but that I  suck at:
Don’t text while driving.
Don’t dye my hair.
Find a job I love.
Build an eight-month emergency fund.
Make a photo album of pics taken during the 1001 days.

Things on the list that make me sad:
Plan a great bachelorette party/wedding shower/pre-wedding day for my sister.
Share a magical NYE kiss.
Go to a shooting range with my family.
Go to the driving range with my dad.

Things I am super excited about:
Make sushi.
Learn to surf.
Take a pole dancing class.
Go to a gay bar.

Things that are most likely to remain un-crossed-off:
Tie between Go to the driving range with my dad and Help someone achieve their weight loss goal.

Things that will very likely happen before the end of the year:
Adopt a pet.
Learn to SUP.
Go to a gay bar.
Play hooky.

So much has changed in the last 495 days.  It’s hard to even remember who I was when I made the list.  I guess it’s a nice reminder that this too shall pass.

Do you have a list?  Did you have the same excitement when you started it but feel your enthusiasm wane a bit as the days moved forward?

The Unexpected

I went to the DMV – or as the rebellious state of Arizona tries to call it, the MVD – at lunch today on the day that I originally started this draft.  And it sucked because that’s what it’s supposed to do. I think you have to be fat with no personality to work there. 

I apologize, that was rude.  I think it definitely helps if you are fat and have no personality.

Why was I there? To spend an hour fixing a mistake they had made. I registered my car when I moved back in 2009 as a 2007 (Toyota Corolla Sport, still love her). Lucky for me, I don’t clean out my car and have that registration, not that it changes the story, but it does make me feel less crazy. When I renewed my registration in 2010, it had mysteriously become a 2006, which I didn’t notice.

I know now you’re saying, well if you had noticed the mistake the first time, you wouldn’t have had to do this…yes, I would have, just a year ago. When my registration came for this year, it was still mysteriously a 2006, which meant I was due for the dreaded emissions test.

All my research told me 2007s really don’t need the test and even driving into the testing facility, there was a huge sign telling me most 2007 and newer cars don’t need testing, but my notice from the MVD told me it did, so I was following the rules. The guy was super confused and called a manager, who was the only one among the three of us to realize that although my car is a 2007, the renewal notice said it was a 2006, and that she could take my money and test it, but she didn’t want to.

So, today the day I originally wrote this draft, I went to the MVD to renew it as a 2007 and take off the required emissions test. And I spent an hour there and I was directed to no fewer than three lines and the person who helped me was fat and had no personality. I’m sorry, but it’s true.

Any other stereotypes? There were actually some surprisingly good-looking people there, but some real ugos as well. There was a kid who looked like Shawn White no doubt getting his driver’s license for the first time, and since I had just seen Friends with Benefits over the weekend, that just made me laugh.

Anyway, this day in the life story was not the original point of this post. The original point was that I was weirdly hopeful when I walked into the MVD.

I was like, wow, this place has such a bad rap, but maybe they will buck that and the wait won’t be long and the people will be nice and funny and it won’t smell like gross fast food and there won’t be children crying loudly. Oh yeah, it also smelled like gross fast food and the acoustics made the screaming children sound even louder.

So, the experience was as it was expected to be, but the moral of the story is that it could have been better.  It’s always better when you expect one thing and get something else. Well, usually…and let’s focus on those instances.

One of my favorite quotes is that it’s never too late to be the person you’re meant to be. I spent many younger years doing what was expected, good or bad, and have had a lot more fun recently doing whatever I want, whether it’s what is expected or not.  I enjoy becoming who I am, not staying who others think I am.

I still sometimes feel held back by others’ expectations, or even expectations I set for myself, but stepping outside of that is always a thrilling thing.  I think that was a huge draw in making my 101 in 1001 list.  It’s been a little over a year and some of the desire behind some of the ideas has waned, but it’s a nice reminder to keep doing new things!

Goals Schmoals

I sat down on Monday night to dive into the summer Beat the Heat challenge, but wasn’t feeling it. I had made a list of the goals I had in mind, but wasn’t too gung-ho about them.

I have lists of goals on big post-its all over the place. January resolutions I need to revisit, things to do in the summer, things to do in July, things to do before my birthday (in one month), 101 things, things that other bloggers are doing that sound like great ideas (like Kate’s sugar-free day…hey girl, hey).

And then there’s stuff I actually need to do, like decide if I want to buy a house and then do all the steps to make it happen…you can see it’s quite well-researched.

It’s far too easy to lose focus in the summer and I’m not sure if that’s what’s going on here, but I know myself and I know that although I can give myself a hard time, I never actually get too far off track without pulling myself back on.

I’m a Big Kid Now

Last summer when I made my 101 list, I felt silly putting “pay for my own cell phone” on the list. For goodness sake, I was 25 and saying that SOMETIME before I turned 28 I wanted to pay for my cell phone myself? Spoiled. Brat.

It’s just something my mom has always done because we were on the same plan and contract lengths and unemployment and underpaying jobs and blah blah blah. I’ve told her many times I was going to do it, but never got around to it.

Today, I finally made myself an account owner to basically separate our phone bills and got my own login info and…drumroll please…paid my own cell phone bill like a big girl.

It’s silly to be so excited, but it was like when I made my last car payment and was jumping around saying, “somebody hug me!”

Except today is the opposite. A first payment and, seeing as how I could never imagine going without a cell phone,  these will never end. As much as I hate spending money, I love that I’m spending money on this.

I’m also going to redo my budget tonight to include this new monthly expense and allow myself more flex room. It’s pretty much bare bones right now and it’s based off the fact that I spent about $2000 a month when that’s about what I was making, so now even though I’m making more, I should still spend that amount.

Change of plans.

I’ve earned the freedom to spend more. I have a good job and make more money now. I paid off my car and credit card.  I overpay on my student loans while still building my savings. Everything left is MINE.

I don’t want to spend money for the sake of spending it, but I want to be okay with going out for happy hours and buying some cute new date clothes.  Going from super-saver mode to okay-to-spend mode is difficult, but having a budget to tell me it’s okay without letting me go overboard is a good way to start.

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Life's Journey with a Smile

My 10 goals are:

  1. Lose 5 pounds in January and maintain (starting is 122.6).
  2. Sign up for a new dating site in February (assuming Mr. Amazing doesn’t waltz in before that).
  3. Climb the seven summits of Phoenix in seven days.
  4. Make a real meal at least once a week.
  5. Adopt a pet.
  6. Get a bike and decrease my gas usage.
  7. Write my guest post for The Chick Lit Bee.
  8. Roll over my 401(k)s.
  9. Do six things with friends (happy hours, game nights, etc.).
  10. Find and participate in a volunteer opportunity.

Now, on to this week’s questions!

1.  What have you done this past week to help you achieve your goals?

I kept up with my “make one real meal a week” with pizza amazingness part two last week, kind of a cop out to do a repeat, but I had the ingredients!  I went out with friends on Thursday and again last night (up to four now).  I wrote my chick lit guest post and sent it to my friend, Nancy, at The Chick Lit Bee and found an event to volunteer for and signed up (since my first attempt was a fail).  I kinda felt like I slumped this past week, but that’s not too shabby! 

My goal for January weight loss is not going as expected.  I was expecting that with kicking my running up, I’d be able to get back down to 117 without much additional effort, but it’s going the other direction and I’m seeing bigger numbers than I’ve ever seen on the scale and freaking out!  So I came up with a plan for eating for the next few weeks because I know it is a conscious thing that needs effort to work together with my exercise, so hopefully I’ll have positive progress to report on that soon.  

2.  Do you find that your motivation/mood changes in the winter? If so, what do you do to help/avoid it?

I definitely tend to get holiday brain between Thanksgiving and New Year’s, especially in terms of wellness.  Heading into the new year, though, with my resolutions laid out, I do feel focused and ready to take them on.  In terms of exercise, this is honestly the best time for it in Arizona (sorry, to anyone who got tons of snow just dumped on them last week, but we’re having highs almost hitting the 80s!) and I want to go outside and get my sweat on.  That kind of motivation wanes during the summer for me when I have like a two-hour window (3am-5am) to be outside and not be taken by heat exhaustion.

3.  Do you have any advice for your fellow challengers on staying on task?

I know a lot of the goals I’ve seen from others in the challenge are ongoing, but my advice would be that if there’s a goal that’s a one-time thing to do or achieve, do it.  It will do wonders for your confidence and determination to cross just one thing off the list early on.

4.  What day{s} of the week/month do you find it difficult to stay on task/motivated?

I often have big plans for the weekend (in terms of moving toward goals), but they tend to be forgotten or pushed aside for other things.  I’m much more focused during the week because I’m usually looking at my planner, which has all my to-dos laid out, daily and I am thinking about the tasks I want to accomplish.

5.  Fun Question of the Week:  If you were going on a road trip {longer than a day} who would you take with you? Where would you go?

This is a tough question because often I think that I’d like to go here or I’d like to do this or that with a special person, but I haven’t found that special person yet.  I’m getting better at telling myself that I don’t have to wait for someone else to do things I want to do, but still, of course it would be nice. 

Back to the question, though.  Go to a new state, visit a major U.S. metro and take a road trip are all on my 101 list, so I’ve put plenty of thought into this idea!  I’d want to road trip to Austin (it would be all three for me!) and I’d want my old roomie to come with me because we haven’t seen each other much since I moved to Arizona a year and a half ago and the 14.5 hour trip would give us plenty of time to catch up and it would be fun to explore a new city with her because even though she’s old and married now she’s still one fun chick! 

Picture, this is how I felt about my training this week:


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The Off(ish) Week(ish)

So what did I do while on my technology sabbatical?

1.  I sucked at taking a technology sabbatical, but each day got better (until I gave up altogether and ended it early) and I think it will be easier to lessen my use day-to-day now. And I know better what it will take to truly take an unplug week when I’m ready to try again.

2.  I totally drained my legs with the 12-miler on Saturday + a 6-miler on Sunday so switched around my training for the rest of the week (keeping the distances and runs, just exchanging rest days) and rocked out my peak week of training.

3.  I fell in love with my Garmin Forerunner 305.

4.  I had my first fight with Rebel.  Catalyst: Me still holding out (actually, for him I do believe it was about sex, for me, I was attempting a DTR talk because sex and the R – relationship – go together).  I learned that he’s a horrible fighter.  He wasn’t much for listening to or attempting to understand what I was saying and super-awkwardly left before any real discussion could be had.  Outcome:  Validation of my decision.   

5.  I realized there’s a difference between someone with whom you want to hang out and someone with whom you want to combine lives, which I guess I knew, but again…validation.

6.  Had another date with Mr. No Name on which he was determined to prove he wasn’t conservative and could be more than a friend.  Fail, first of all, but then he got post-date balls.  Via text he was all, “damn we should still be hanging out,” and I was all, “well then you should have stumbled your way through some kind of awkward invite to a phase two because now it’s too late and I’m on my couch in my ugly single-lady PJs and my tummy is happily full of sushi and vodka I didn’t have to pay for.”

7.  I had another first date with another POF guy. I found out that someone who has “non-douche” as their headline IS, in fact, a douche, but of a weird variety.  I deleted the last batch of “[insert rando’s name] pof”s from my phone because the ratio of guys who do online dating because they are socially retarded to guys who do online dating because they are normal, but busy/new to the area is about 5:1 (from my research) and that’s just a numbers game I’m sick of playing. 

8.  I heard from TGISWOTSD again.  Re:  hot dogs.  Again.  His interests seemed much more diverse when we were dating, I swear.  Again, maybe he’s testing the waters of friendship, but seeing his email addy, my heart flutters and wonders if he misses me and realizes we were great and it’s worth an actual try.  Ugh.

9.  I packed my fridge and pantry with real food so my apartment no longer looks like a bachelor lives there.  And yes, this is packed for a single girl.  I spent way too much time thinking about how to use it all!

10.  I totally blew my food budget (but that’s why I built in flexibility elsewhere).

11.  I ate well. (This is homemade pizza amazingness, part 2!)

12.  I accepted that I will never be a photog or foodie blogger (but I started a wellness blog that will have a food aspect)!

13.  I added some big dreams to my bucket list because I’ve really seen the power of writing down and going after some of the things I want recently and I’m in a big WHY NOT mood.

14.  I actually wrote down THE list (of traits I’m looking for in a man).  Again, why not?

15.  I went out on a school night.  As in like, don’t even start getting ready until 9 kind of out.  It was a friend’s last night in town and I’m glad I did, but I’m paying for it today!

Unplugged

I’m going off the grid (starting yesterday).  During the holidays I took a little time away from technology by default, but this week I’m making a conscious effort to unplug for no reason at all (well, it is on my 101 list).  I imagine I’ll be well-rested, well-read and my shoulders will move away from my ears.  I’m going to be social.  Imagine that.  I might also attempt to figure out my life and create a plot to eliminate senseless crimes against the English language.

I’ve scheduled this post and tomorrow’s WWW update to go up while I’m on detox.  If they bore, feel free to abort the mission, but come back next week when you won’t be reading posts I cranked out in one night!

Boo NYE

My last few New Year’s Eves have kind of blown.

2010 – I worked. While attempting to cocktail a tray of champagne-filled flutes, I dumped about half ON A GUEST (in my defense I was the door girl, not a server).  I mumbled an apology but was focused on getting back to the bar to get more because it was like 11:58 and most of the room was empty-handed.   All the champagne got out and I grabbed my own just in time to cheers the new year with my frustrating boss, his mail-order Russian bride and my very recently exed boyfriend.  Then the ex asked me outside and gave me some awkward speech about how it doesn’t have to be awkward and kissed me on the cheek.  Then I went home and cried and ate a burrito.

2009 – I worked earlier in the evening with my roommate/best friend/boss.  We went home and each fell asleep by 10, like the little old ladies that we are.

2008 – This was during the only party girl phase I went through.  I went to an overpriced party at a club with my two roommates and maybe kissed a guy or three.  My horrible roommate documented it and later sent those pictures to the guy who became my boyfriend seven months after the fact (because of a very twisted back story that involves a lovely little love triangle).  And I’m sure I was terribly hungover the next day.

2007 – I was sick, so couldn’t drink but went out with high school friends anyway.  My boyfriend had recently moved away and we were attempting the long distance thing.  I called him at midnight, but he claimed he didn’t get the call and got mad at me and we fought for the next two days. 

I don’t remember the years before that and it’s probably for the best. I always said that, hey the only way to go is up, but I would be totally okay if this NYE didn’t suck.  One of my Day Zero things is have a great NYE kiss.  I have three chances for it, so there’s not a ton of pressure there, but I have definitely been overthinking my plans. 

Plan A – Celebrate NYE and a friend’s 21st birthday in Las Vegas.  I actually got a ticket for this.  Then I thought about it for two seconds.  NYE…Las Vegas…21-year-olds (in her defense she does actually act older, but I imagine the occasion will have her and her 25-year-old girlfriend both acting like true 21-year-olds)…so not my style.  My Facebook invite RSVP slowly retreated from yes to maybe to no.

Plan B – Throw something together locally with other friends who also backed out of the Vegas trip, which is, like, everyone. 

Plan C – Rebel will be working at the party I worked at last year because, yes, he does have the same job as my ex, which is fortunately where the similarities stop (and my ex is no longer there) and has suggested I hang out there so I can at least see him.  This is less of an actual option, more of something I think about when I need a good laugh.  I am so not going back, even to see my adorable, little Rebel.

Plan D – My second invite came from my college roommate hosting a party in her fab apartment in LA.  Cocktails at night to be followed with watching the Rose Bowl Parade go by right outside the next morning.  Low key night with ladies I love and don’t see enough of?  Yes, please.  I switched my ticket to take me to LA for a fun-filled 24 hours.  It’s definitely more my style, except the only confirmed guests are two of the girls and their significant others, making me a fifth wheel.  I informed her I would be hanging off her balcony inviting tall, dark, handsome passersby up and she did not retract my invite so in a few short hours I’m jetting off to LA.

I didn’t really have plans the last few years and they sucked, so maybe since I came up with something ahead of time it won’t suck as much.  But, if it does, it can only go up from there, right?