Fire Up For Fall The End

My Fire Up For Fall goals and results:

1. Go to yoga in the park at least once.
1.2 Do one good thing (at least)!
2. Decorate two rooms.
2.2 Make at least two meals for the week type meals on Sundays. (1/2)
3. Do three 101 things. (3/3)
3.2 Read three books. (2/3)
4. Save $400. ($400/$400)
4.2 Do four friend things. (4/4)
5. Go for an evening walk at least five times. (5/5)
5.2 Spend five hours a week writing or working on my side business. (7 weeks/10 weeks)

Eek.  I got a 60%!  The last time I got a score that low was 9th grade geometry and I cried.  But, I’m not crying now.  I enjoyed the last ten weeks.  

I didn’t really throw anything new in the mix that I probably wouldn’t have done anyway, so I feel like I didn’t challenge myself enough.  However, the second question asked each week, what have you done to make yourself feel fabulous, was a nice weekly reminder that although the last few weeks have been tough, there were good things that deserved to be mentioned and celebrated.  Thanks, Rebecca, for hosting this challenge!

I’m a little sad the next challenge isn’t until 2012, but I still plan for the rest of my 2011 to be filled with doing good things, saving money, taking evening walks, spending time with friends and reading delicious books (after struggling with Chasing Harry Winston for most of the challenge, I threw up my white flag and switched to The Midwife’s Confession and OMG, Diane Chamberlain is my new fave).

Fire Up For Fall Week 9

My Fire Up For Fall goals and progress:

1. Go to yoga in the park at least once.
1.2 Do one good thing (at least)!
2. Decorate two rooms.
2.2 Make at least two meals for the week type meals on Sundays. (1/2)
3. Do three 101 things. (3/3)
3.2 Read three books. (1/3)
4. Save $400. ($400/$400)
4.2 Do four friend things. (4/4)
5. Go for an evening walk at least five times. (5/5)
5.2 Spend five hours a week writing or working on my side business. (7 weeks/10 weeks)

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

I did a few good things this week…nothing huge, but those little acts of kindness that I’m normally too shy to step up and do. 

I read more than I have been, but am still struggling with finishing book #2.  Perhaps I need to read something NOT about relationships right now.

2. What have you done to make yourself feel fabulous?

I went out.  I don’t go out often, but I knew I needed a shake up in my weekend routine (of yoga and running and watching TV and going to bed at 9 and not really talking to human beings for the majority of it).  In an attempt to really do something different and unfunk, I straightened my hair.  I liked how it looked, but I liked even more that after two days, I was like, “this isn’t me” and am happy to be back to a curly girl.

3. What is the most positive thing you’ve taken away from this challenge?

This is going to sound shallow, but it hasn’t been a super life changing challenge, probably because of my goals, so I’m just going to say that I found out I really like the yoga in the park classes and kind of got over my fear of going to them, which is nice.

4. It’s your last week, the run to the finish, what is your priority?

I’d like to at least finish another book, so I’m going to be mindful of the stupid TV I watch and use the time to read instead.  I also want to finish my dinner goal.  Sunday is my mom’s birthday, so I might have to make a big dinner Saturday or something, but either way, I’ll make a point to make a meal with leftovers.

5. Fun Stuff: Desert Island, you can take 1 person, 1 famous person and 3 items besides food and water. Who and What do you take?

I guess I’d take Lucky because on a desert island, family issues wouldn’t matter.  I’d totally take Oprah and I’d take a notebook, a pen and sunscreen, haha.  Sounds like a lovely little vacay, actually…sign me up!

Fire Up For Fall Week 8

Week 8?!

My Fire Up For Fall goals and progress:

1. Go to yoga in the park at least once.
1.2 Do one good thing (at least)!
2. Decorate two rooms.
2.2 Make at least two meals for the week type meals on Sundays. (1/2)
3. Do three 101 things. (3/3)
3.2 Read three books. (1/3)
4. Save $400. ($400/$400)
4.2 Do four friend things. (4/4)
5. Go for an evening walk at least five times. (5/5)
5.2 Spend five hours a week writing or working on my side business. (7 weeks/10 weeks)

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

I decorated my bedroom a bit, but I definitely realize it’s a process to feel like an entire room is fully decorated!

I got a puppy(!), so we went for quite a few evening walks, finishing that goal.

I’ve slacked on the writing/side business.  I really contemplated NaNoWriMo, but could not feel inspired in the first few days of the month.

2. What have you done to make yourself feel fabulous?

I’ve been in a slump, so I made a list of things I could do to make myself feel better and have started doing some of them – from little things like look good when I leave the house and don’t hit snooze to eat healthy and see friends.

3. How important is a social life to you? Are you a loner or a butterfly or somewhere in between?

It’s pretty important to me, but I’m a bit of a lone wolf (sounds much nicer than loner) and I know I don’t make as much effort to have a social life as I should and my social life tends to reflect that.

4. How do you balance life outside your home with healthy living?

I used to struggle with this, like if a social opportunity came up, I’d dump my workouts or going out to eat was a special occasion, so I would eat extravagantly. But, having race goals to work toward and training plans to follow, I’m much better at keeping those commitments to myself and working in the social aspects around it.  Also, I’ve learned to eat out however I want, which is usually not too big of a meal and something healthy.  It helps me not feel guilty if sometimes I want something a little more indulgent.

5. What do you like to do for fun?

I kind of hate this question, I guess because it’s ALWAYS a top question when online dating and it gets old answering it and I feel like a bit of a freak for always saying workout!  Beyond that, I like getting out to community events or going to happy hours in terms of social things.

Fire Up For Fall Week 7

My Fire Up For Fall goals and progress:

1. Go to yoga in the park at least once.
1.2 Do one good thing (at least)!
2. Decorate two rooms.
2.2 Make at least two meals for the week type meals on Sundays. (1/2)
3. Do three 101 things. (3/3)
3.2 Read three books. (1/3)
4. Save $400. ($400/$400)
4.2 Do four friend things. (4/4)
5. Go for an evening walk at least five times. (3/5)
5.2 Spend five hours a week writing or working on my side business. (7 weeks/10 weeks)

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

I saved $150 from my EOM paycheck to finish my savings goal.

When I walked into my condo after being gone all weekend I got really depressed that it’s so bare, so my motivation to decorate is kicking in, that’s a step there!

I went to my friend’s wedding and it was a whole friend weekend (and gosh did I need it), finishing up my four friend things.

I took an evening walk after the rehearsal dinner.  It actually felt like fall and was lovely.

I wrote a little while I was traveling, not sure it was five hours, but it was something.

2. What have you done to make yourself feel fabulous?

I let myself be on vacation – mentally as well as physically and I definitely needed that.  I stopped worrying and future-thinking and fat-talking myself in many ways that I had been lately.  I was surrounded by good friends and I just had fun.  Obviously the weekend away also helped me make progress on my goals!

3. How do you pull yourself out of a slump or prevent yourself falling in to one?

I fake it til I make it.  If it’s a workout slump, I make myself put in the workouts even if I’m not feeling it until I am actually motivated again. If it’s a life funk in general, I make a point to dress up to feel good about myself until it reflects on the inside as well. To prevent a workout slump, I try to schedule a variety of workouts so I don’t feel bummed that I’m going to run every day or whatever.

4. Are you naturally positive or do you have to work at it? How do you keep yourself positive?

I am generally positive.  If I’m having a feeling sorry for myself moment or feeling pessimistic, I can usually look at the bigger picture and see that things in general are still pretty good and whatever little thing is bugging me will pass.

5. I’m on Holiday right now, if you could go away anywhere tomorrow (and work wouldn’t get weird) where would you go?

I am craving (and half-planning) a trip to Belize for surfing and yoga, I would definitely jet there to refresh!

Fire Up For Fall Week 6

My Fire Up For Fall goals and progress:

1. Go to yoga in the park at least once.
1.2 Do one good thing (at least)!
2. Decorate two rooms.
2.2 Make at least two meals for the week type meals on Sundays. (1/2)
3. Do three 101 things. (3/3)
3.2 Read three books. (1/3)
4. Save $400. ($250/$400)
4.2 Do four friend things. (3/4)
5. Go for an evening walk at least five times. (2/5)
5.2 Spend five hours a week writing or working on my side business. (6 weeks/10 weeks)

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

I went to yoga in the park on a hotel rooftop pool deck. 

I finished one book (about raising a dog…if I don’t get one soon, I might burst and I want to do it right)!

I finished the preliminary work I set out to do on Lucky’s website.  Obviously, I still support him and want him to do well, so I was really excited to work with him on this, but as of right now, I’m not sure where the business part of our relationship is going to settle (along with every other part of the relationship).

2. What have you done to make yourself feel fabulous?

I spent Sunday lounging.  Keep in mind, lounging to me means hiking in the morning, but then comfy clothes, watching football, reading, not staring at the computer, a little bit of cooking and baking.  Glorious.

 3. Do you listen to music when you work out? What gets you fired up?

Both my iPods were dead this morning and it was the worst! I love girl power songs (like Kelly Clarkson) and also some rap gets me going (like Miss New Booty)!

4. What’s your guilty pleasure music? How does it make you feel?

I guess I’d say Britney Spears.  I’ve been a fan since day one and through the crazy phrase.  Her songs make me feel fun and sexy.

5. If today were a song what song would it be?

I’d pick something moody and bluesy, but it’s such a sunny, pretty day and things with Lucky are overall happy right now, so I just don’t know.

Fire Up For Fall Week 5

My Fire Up For Fall goals and progress:

1. Go to yoga in the park at least once.
1.2 Do one good thing (at least)!
2. Decorate two rooms.
2.2 Make at least two meals for the week type meals on Sundays. (1/2)
3. Do three 101 things. (3/3)
3.2 Read three books.
4. Save $400. ($250/$400)
4.2 Do four friend things. (3/4)
5. Go for an evening walk at least five times. (2/5)
5.2 Spend five hours a week writing or working on my side business. (5 weeks/10 weeks)

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

I got paid and put $50 into savings right away.

I did quite a few social, friend things last week around the wedding, but I’m counting it as one.

I went for a night time walk last week with my two favorite guys – Lucky and his pup!

I worked on Lucky’s website early last week to get it out of the way before the madness.

2. What have you done to make yourself feel fabulous?

I made time to work out amidst the wedding mania.

3. It’s half way through the challenge, you can change 1 or more of your goals (max of 3) if you want to….what are you going to do and why?

I’m going to not expect myself to decorate two rooms.  Since moving in about a month ago, I ate up my house budget and it’s very exciting to get everything done, but I’d rather be responsible about it and save some more “home money” before spending it.

4. What’s your worst bad habit and have you ever tried to tackle it? Do you want to?

I switched from biting my nails to ripping at my cuticles, specifically on my right thumb.  It always looks bad and I’d love to stop, but I haven’t quite tackled it yet.

Fire Up For Fall Week 4

My Fire Up For Fall goals and progress:

1. Go to yoga in the park at least once.
1.2 Do one good thing (at least)!
2. Decorate two rooms.
2.2 Make at least two meals for the week type meals on Sundays. (1/2)
3. Do three 101 things. (3/3)
3.2 Read three books.
4. Save $400. ($200/$400)
4.2 Do four friend things. (2/4)
5. Go for an evening walk at least five times. (1/5)
5.2 Spend five hours a week writing or working on my side business. (4 weeks/10 weeks)

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

I did two things on my 101 list, completing that goal. I got a Brazilian wax.  TMI?  Probably.  I also went to Oktoberfest and ate festival food (it was on the list, don’t ask).

I went to Oktoberfest with some girlfriends I haven’t seen since July, so that’s another friend thing!

I worked on Lucky’s and my own marketing plans for more than five hours last week.

2.  What have you done to make yourself feel fabulous?

I’d say the wax.  It was my first and although it didn’t feel fabulous during, I really like it and have felt quite womanly (ironic?) and sexy since. 

3. What is your go to food or activity when you’ve had a bad day?

I have a few different coping mechanisms, depending on the kind of bad day it was.  Anything from brie and french bread to chocolate, chocolate, chocolate or running or yoga to just going to bed (even if it’s like 7)!

      4. What’s the last thing you did that you were really proud of?

My triathlon. It’s something I wanted to do for a while and I trained for three months.  I was very proud to run across the finish line!

5. Fun Time:  What was your favorite school subject, and your least favorite? Why?

I usually like my English classes because I liked to read and write.  I cried over math way too many times and never wanted to go.  It just overwhelmed me.

Positive image of the week:

Can’t stop listening to Adele’s 21.  Here’s one of her lyrics that been inspiring me lately.

 
{from}

Fire Up For Fall Week 3

My Fire Up For Fall goals and progress:

1. Go to yoga in the park at least once.
1.2 Do one good thing (at least)!
2. Decorate two rooms.
2.2 Make at least two meals for the week type meals on Sundays. (1/2)
3. Do three 101 things. (1/3)
3.2 Read three books.
4. Save $400. ($200/$400)
4.2 Do four friend things. (1/4)
5. Go for an evening walk at least five times. (1/5)
5.2 Spend five hours a week writing or working on my side business. (3 weeks/10 weeks)

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

I made dinner on Sunday, with enough leftovers for a few more meals during the week.

I went to the library and picked up the first (Chasing Harry Winston by Lauren Weisberger) of the three books I’m going to read…and I did start reading at the pool at the bach party!

I ended the month actually having spent less than I earned, so I saved $200 to my e-fund.

On Saturday, I went to my sister’s bachelorette party.  When we were little she would have hated me calling her friends my friends, but I really enjoy hanging out with them.

I went for my first evening walk last Tuesday.  It was windy and cooler than it has been and kind of a really neat fall-type night, so I went out to explore my new community (it’s big!) and find my mailbox and the pool and fitness center.

I worked on Lucky’s website and also starting working out the logistics of my side business (you know, for when I expand it beyond men I’m sleeping with) for more than five hours last week.

2.  What have you done to make yourself feel fabulous?

September was a huge rush around month for me and everything was leading up to the weekend of the 24/25 when I moved into my new place fully and did my triathlon, so in the week since I’ve tried to slow down and breath.  There’s still stuff to do around the house, but I took normal-length showers, actually shaved, painted my nails, took time to read…just the little things I’ve been missing.

  3. Where do you see yourself in 5 years? What are your goals? Ambitions?

I’ve actually been working on revising these lately! It’s a constantly changing plan.  I’ll be 32.  I see myself working at a marketing agency, having traveled and kept up with my athletic lifestyle and ready to start a family if I don’t have one already.  By then, I’d love to have found a way to have a summer house somewhere like Idaho.

  4. Give us a tip or a fact. About anything, what is something great you’ve  heard that everyone should know?

Putting  everything you can into your 401K isn’t the best way to save for your future.  Definitely max out your company match and then contribute to a Roth IRA. It’s a pre-tax/post-tax thing and also helps diversify your investments.  If you’re fortunate enough to STILL have money left to tuck away after maxing out your 401K and reaching the Roth IRA limit ($5,000 a year for a young person in a “low” income bracket), then get a financial planner, because that’s about as far as I know, but I’ll tell it to anyone who mentions retirement savings!

  5. Fun Question: What was your most recent dream that you can remember?

I had a dream last night that someone else was complaining that they had the same song stuck in their head that I’ve had in my head for a while (Take a Back Road by Rodney Atkins).

Positive Picture

I’ve been struggling to get back on track with working out since my triathlon and feeling guilty with taking the time off, so I choose this as a reminder that every day this week I have the chance to start again and get it right.

From Pinterest.

Fire Up For Fall Week 2

My Fire Up For Fall goals and progress:

1. Go to yoga in the park at least once.
1.2 Do one good thing (at least)!
2. Decorate two rooms.
2.2 Make at least two meals for the week type meals on Sundays.
3. Do three 101 things. (1/3)
3.2 Read three books.
4. Save $400.
4.2 Do four friend things.
5. Go for an evening walk at least five times.
5.2 Spend five hours a week writing or working on my side business. (2 weeks/10 weeks)

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

I made small talk with strangers.  Doesn’t count as a “nice thing,” but it’s helping me get over shyness and connect with strangers just for the sake of sharing a smile.

I fully moved into my new place, so the decorating has begun.  My friends helped me, but I won’t consider the forced friend fun of hauling my furniture to be a “friend thing.”

I competed in my first triathlon, which was one of my 101 things!

I worked on marketing for Lucky (my first client of my side business) for more than five hours.

2. What have you done to make yourself feel fabulous?

Pretty sure nothing this week can top the feeling of finishing my tri!

3. What is your talent? What are you good at? {Genuinely, EVERYONE has something big or small}

Ugh!  This is hard.  TWSS.  Speaking of…do blow jobs count?  I feel like all guys really like them and would then, of course, praise the woman giving them to him to encourage this behavior, but I feel like I’ve gotten an awkward amount of compliments over the years.  Yeah, that was for sure TMI.

4. What’s been the highlight of your week, toot your horn, what are you proud of!

Again…the tri!

5. Fun Question: What’s your guilty pleasure TV?

Oh my goodness, in my new place, the HOA includes cable, which is a step up from the five channels I’ve had for the past two years, so I get to delight in all my guilty pleasure TV shows…Teen Mom, Jersey Shore, Say Yes to the Dress and I recently discovered Sister Wives.  What can I say? I’m a voyeur!

Sorry, being out of the challenge for the summer, I completely forgot that Mondays are for posting, so this was a little rushed and I didn’t even have time to think about a positive pic.  I’ll find one for next week!

Be Kind

There’s a peculiar item on my Fire up for Fall list.

1.2 Do one good thing (at least)!

Now, I know what you’re thinking…MJ, you are SUCH a good person already. You volunteer, you donate blood, you hold back snarky comments and say them behind people’s backs (and put them on the internet) instead of to their faces. You’re pretty much a saint.

And, yes, it is true. However, the motive behind this goal – and the reason that it’s a challenge – is because when the opportunity for a random act of kindness, for helping out a stranger, appears, I shy away from it. Quite literally I’m too shy to offer assistance, but either way, I hate that.

Por ejemplo, last week, I saw a big guy trying to load an awkward table into his truck bed and I kept walking.  Now, I considered opening with, “I’m stronger than I look,” but I guess I was afraid he would laugh at me or tell me he had it, but there would really have been no harm in asking. 

I probably shouldn’t have been too pissed (although I totes was!) a few days later when I was trying to load an Ikea box that was to become a desk into my trunk by my itty bitty self and two people watched me from their car as they waited for my spot.  I totally deserved that. 

I don’t think I’m completely alone though. As the hilarious gen y kids v. baby boomer parents Toyota commercials point out, we’re so connected, but we’re not really connected and life is about connecting.  Really connecting.

I think society in general shies away from reaching out to people – holding doors, carrying bags, even just making eye contact and saying hello! Now, maybe it’s the community I live in.  I visited beautiful Coeur d’Alene a few summers ago and the LA-ites I was with actually started mocking the locals and their propensity to say, “hey there,” to anyone and everyone.  That’s an LA attitude for sure, but maybe Idaho knows what’s up.

So, I’m challenging myself to not let whatever social hangups I have stop me from stepping in and doing the right thing.  What’s the worst that could happen?  A stranger I never see again tells me, “no thanks”?  I think I can handle that.

Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle. – Plato