Sunday, September 14, 2014

My Workouts of the Week

Oh heeeeeey weekly workout blog - where you been, girl?!

Yeah, you might (or might not) have noticed that it's been well over a month since my last "Workouts of the Week" blog. I took some time off from the gym after my move in August, and finally picked back up with a new gym membership in my new neighborhood a few weeks ago - at a Gold's Gym that's within walking distance from my apartment. The first week of September, I only went a couple of times, but this past week I picked it up to what is basically my "normal" routine.

.  the much-beloved instragram pre-gym snap  .
... Except that almost all of my recent upper body workouts have been focusing on trying to relieve the shoulder pain that I've been suffering from since late July. It's been a real, real bitch. To everyone who suffers from chronic pain... I feel you. Keep ya head up.

9/8 (upper body)
5 mins elliptical, .5 miles
2x:
  - 24 alternating shoulder raises on exercise ball, 5 lbs each hand
  - 12 chest press on exercise ball, 10 lbs each hand
  - 12 tricep extensions on exercise ball, 5 lbs each hand
  - 12 close grip chest press on exercise ball, 10 lbs each hand
  - 12 deltoid flys, 5 lbs each hand
  - 12 bent over rows each arm, holding 15 lbs 
  - 12 deltoid raises, 5 lbs each hand
   -12 overhead press on exercise ball, 10 lbs each hand
  - 24 alternating chest flys, 5 lbs each hand
12 lat pulldowns, 37.5 lbs
12 lat pulldowns, 50 lbs

9/9 (lower body)
5 mins elliptical, .5 miles
3x:  20 calf raises, 17.5 lbs each hand
3x:  15 deadlifts, 17.5 lbs each hand
3x:  20 side lunges + plyometric push-off each side
3x:  15 sumo squats holding 22.5 lbs
3x:  20 diamond clamshells each leg

9/11 (cardio & upper body)
25 mins elliptical, 2.75 miles
2x, prone on exercise ball:
  - 12 M, 5 lbs each hand
  - 12 T, 5 lbs each hand
  - 12 Y, 5 lbs each hand
12 chest press on exercise ball, 12.5 lbs each hand
12 close grip chest press on exercise ball, 12.5 lbs each hand
24 alternating chest flys, 5 lbs each hand
12 lat pulldowns, 25 lbs
12 lat pulldowns, 37.5 lbs
12 lat pulldowns, 50 lbs

9/12 (core & cardio intervals)
1:30 jumping jacks
30 weighted v-sit twists, holding 15 lbs
1:00 jumping jacks
30 dynamic side planks each side
1:00 jumping jacks
30 crunches on exercise ball, holding 15 lbs
1:00 jumping jacks
30 Russian get ups holding 5 lbs
30 cobras
30 lat pulldowns, 25 lbs

9/13 (lower body)
1:00 jumping jacks
3x:  20 diamond clamshells each leg
3x:  20 calf raises, 22.5 lbs each hand
3x:  20 side lunges + plyometric push-off each side
3x:  15 deadlifts, 15 lbs each hand
3x:  20 bridges
3x:  15 sumo squats, holding 22.5 lbs
3x:  20 jump squats, alternating wide and close stance

Let me tell you - the lower body workout I did on the 9th left me sooo sore the next two days.  Such an awesome feeling. I was still sore from it yesterday, but did another lower body day anyway rather than be a Sally about it. Now I'm even more sore!

Who else has been getting back into a gym routine lately?

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Saturday, September 13, 2014

Sneak Peek at My Wedding Outfit

Just thought I'd pop in to give you a peek at what I'll be donning at my friend Izzy's wedding tonight... and then pop back out again like I was never even here...





PEEK!

So excited that I have such fierce nails to rock with this outfit. There are also some little beige booties involved. Not sure yet what I'm going to do with my hair... maybe just straighten it and leave it down.

Hope you're having a nice Saturday morning so far :)

If you have a wedding to go to this weekend, show me a pic of what you're wearing on Twitter or Instagram!

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Friday, September 12, 2014

Fierce Autumn Wedding Nails

Wulllll, I know it's not technically autumn yet, but the weather has definitely shifted in Boston this past week. It's become a bit chilly and cloudy, which - honestly - is fiiiiine by me. The humidity around here was making me want to cut a betch, so I'm certainly a better person to be around in the more fall-like temperatures.

Tomorrow evening I'm heading up to Marblehead, MA (a coastal town north of Boston) for the wedding of my friend Izzy and her fiancé Darren. The two of them live in NYC, and I've actually never met Darren before, so hopefully I'm able to snag at least a moment or two of his time to meet him officially! It's been quite awhile since I've seen Izzy too, so I'ma squeeze her fo sho.

Since it's practically fall, the color scheme for my wedding outfit was leaning on the darker side. Burgundy, to be exact. It's a really simple dress, but it's moderately flattering (errr... it was the last time I tried it on anyway - fingers crossed on that one) and is easily dressed up with some accessories. Some of those accessories include two thin leopard print belts to go around my natural waist, which is where these fierce autumn wedding nails come in!

Burgundy nails with leopard print accent

Not to toot my own horn, but... I think these came out pretty damn good. Here's what I used:

Goldie But Goodie by China Glaze, Case Study by Essie, Raisin Rage by Revlon, Stiletto by Revlon, nail polish

Goldie But Goodie by China Glaze, Case Study by Essie, and Raisin Rage and Stiletto - both by Revlon. Case Study hasn't been taken out for a spin in a DOG'S age. What was my problem?? This milky beige polish is awesome!

To start, I painted all of my nails 2 coats of Raisin Rage, except my ring finger, which got 2 coats of Case Study. Next I used Goldie But Goodie to place a few large spots around my accent nail. Using a toothpick dipped into Stiletto, I stippled some C's around the large spots of gold and also added a few smaller random spots around the nail.

You can find more of my leopard print nails here, though be forewarned that they are all pretty old posts:
Speaking of weddings, don't forget that I've still got a re-cap coming up of the wedding that went down over Labor Day weekend. NEVER FORGET. Hopefully also some pictures and tales from Izzy's wedding as well!

What do you have planned this weekend? Anyone else attending a wedding? What will you rock on your nails?

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Monday, September 8, 2014

My Weekend Brings All the Boys to the Yard

Whoooooo, what a great weekend I just had! It was jam-packed with friendship from Friday to Sunday, and I even got to take several long walks in the sunshine - although the humidity around here made those walks sliiiightly less enjoyable. Humidity in the Northwest was at a relative low, compared to these parts, so the past few weeks in Massachusetts have been a bit of a wake up call for me, sweat-wise.

On Friday afternoon I set off on an adventure to Malden (the town just northeast of Medford) to find a shop that ultimately ended up being closed when I got there. Finding my way back to the T station was a bit easier said than done:  My life does not currently include a smartphone, so looking up directions on-the-go is not an option for me (#StoneAge)... thus, I accidentally walked pretty far out of my way that afternoon. Oh well, not the end of the world - especially because I stopped at an ice cream parlor to ask for directions... and of course one does not simply ask for directions at an ice cream parlor without also buying a cup of ice cream. (If anyone asks, my dinner on Friday night was not a cup of black raspberry ice cream with chocolate sprinkles. That'll be our little secret, Internet.) While standing in the blessed shade to eat said ice cream, I also snapped some pictures of the pretty windowsill flowerbeds they had at the shop:

Windowsill flowerbed with pink and yellow flowers

Yellow and pink flowers
 Pink flowers and cascading green leaves

Later that evening I went out to a bar in Somerville with my friends J-rod and Derek and their roommates. Brass Union in Union Square is everything that a bar ought to be... and by that I mean full of games to delight your inner child while you drink. We played some shuffleboard inside beside their bar and then moved outside for some Giant Jenga on their patio. It was a fantastic way to avoid boredom at a bar, which can often be a problem for me. It also doesn't hurt that my friends are hysterical, so there was plenty of throw-ya-head-back laughter going on.

Playing Giant Jenga at Brass Union in Somerville
.  jrod makes a move!  .
On Saturday morning I pulled myself out of bed around 9 to get ready and then make my way south of Boston to Roslindale to help my friend Anna paint some rooms in her newly purchased duplex.

Map of driving from Medford to Roslindale
.  medford to roslindale  .
She and her boyf are working to get the downstairs apartment of the duplex rented out ASAP (um, so if you're looking for a nice place to live in Roslindale, holler at me), which means getting the place painted and making finishing touches to give the older building a more modern feel. Personally I've been reading so many home decor blogs for the last several years that I was actually itching to have a reason to paint a room, so it was a win-win for both me and Anna.

After an afternoon of painting (and getting covered in paint splatters!), my next task was to head even further south to Canton, MA to spend the evening with my friend Steph at her condo.

Driving from Roslindale to Canton
.  roslindale to canton  .
Steph's boyfriend Gerry was out of town all weekend at a bachelor party (BEHAVING HIMSELF ENTIRELY, I'M SURE), so we thought a movie night and sleepover was in order for the two of us. And because we both enjoy being crafty and artistic whenever possible, I brought along a Care Bears coloring book for us to partake in while we watched movies (Four Rooms and Mean Girls, if you're curious). By the way, don't you dare tell me it's not normal for a 29-year-old woman to have a Care Bears coloring book... or any coloring book at all, for that matter. Coloring is fun - that's just a fact.

Before settling in for the movies and coloring, we sat out on Steph's balcony for about 20 minutes and watched an amazing lightning storm that had rolled into her neighborhood. As I mentioned earlier, it gets quite humid in Massachusetts but not so much in the Northwest - so lightning has been essentially absent from my life for the last couple of years. I'd forgotten how thrilling it can be to just sit and watch a storm in action. I wish I'd taken video!

The movies I brought turned out to be great choices - obviously Mean Girls never (EVER) disappoints, and Steph had never seen Four Rooms before. Here's what we did while we watched:

Care Bears coloring book
.  mine!  .

Care Bears coloring book
.  steph's  .

Just try to tell me these aren't the cutest pictures ever.  JUST TRY IT.

The next morning, Steph brought me back up to Medford. There was a traffic jam nearly the entire way, so the drive ended up being a bonus hang-out-and-chit-chat session for us (the silver lining of being in a traffic jam with a buddy!). Once back home, I raced to take a shower and head back out the door to J-rod and Derek's place to catch the second half of the Patriots game that had started at 1:30. The Pats unfortunately did not win. There's no silver lining to that one.

All in all, it was a weekend well spent. I'm still kind of pinching myself over how NICE it is to be spending time with my friends who live around Boston. Hopefully they don't start to get sick of me, HAH!

I hope you had a fabulous weekend as well - and a sidebar "thank you" to all of you who visit my little corner of the Internet. My blog hit 100,000 views this weekend, which was pretty exciting for me!

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Friday, September 5, 2014

Bailamos con Polka Dots

I hope that you've already let the rhythm take you over since reading the title of this blog. I know I have.

... Sorry, I'm sure there's an Enrique reference in every single post I've done that includes this turquoise nail polish haha. Forgive me.

ORLY Bailamos nail polish with Color Show Polka Dots Clearly Spotted polish





This mani uses Bailamos by ORLY (2 coats for opacity) on all fingers except my ring. For an accent nail I used one coat of Sinful Colors Snow Me White topped with two coats of Maybelline Color Show Clearly Spotted.

Turquoise polish with black and white polka dot accent nail
I'm a big fan of Clearly Spotted over a white base. It makes me think of cookies 'n cream every time it catches my eye. Nom.

Bailamos was one of the bottles that took a pretty direct hit in the Great Nail Polish Moving Failure of 2014, so it is now sporting a solid amount of "Sweet Pea" by Bath and Body Works...


Turquoise polish with black and white polka dot accent nail

Last night I went out for sushi in Medford at Sei Bar with my friends Steph and Kara. I had some scrumptious rolls - the Medford Maki with grilled salmon, avocado, and cucumber, topped with tempura crumbs, crab meat and spicy mayo; and a Beef Terikaki Maki. I'm usually drawn to the crunchy rolls with spicy mayo - how about you guys?

I have no plans this weekend other than maybe heading down to Steph's condo to chill out and watch some movies with her. It's still so nice to be able to just get together with my best friends on a weeknight or lounge around together on a weekend. This was sorely missing from my life while I was on the West Coast!

What are you getting into this weekend? Any fun plans with ya buds?

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Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Exploring the Backyard

NOT TO BRAG OR ANYTHING, but my Labor Day weekend was almost certainly better than yours was. Sawry I'm not sawry. There was basically a 3-day celebration of love in the form of prepping for and participating in the wedding of two of the cutest cutie pies to ever exist, and I lost my voice somewhere in the celebrations. That's how gewd it was. Believe me when I say that there's going to be a massive recap of the whole thing here on my blog (and maybe by now you've noticed that when I say "massive recap" I freaking mean it). In the meantime, here is a less-wordy blog about something completely unrelated to marriage: a random backyard photography session.

When I was in Pittsfield a few weeks ago (before moving into my new apartment and before this all happened), it occurred to me that my hobby of walking around and snapping photos hadn't "developed" (see what I did there?) till long after moving out my parents' home. Thus, exploring my parents' backyard with a camera was something I'd never done before - probably ever. With nothing better to do and an expansive yard of a rural 3-acres calling my name, I grabbed my CyberShot and headed outside to see what caught my eye.

Japanese beetle on a flower

View of my parents' house in Pittsfield from the back hill

Purple clovers

A tree with no leaves

A tree with no leaves

This stuff was so springy beneath my feet... I'm not entirely sure what it is, but it's not grass:

Springy green underfoot

Springy green underfoot

Springy green lawn beneath my feet

Springy green lawn beneath my feet

A feather on the lawn

Field of clovers

Yellow buttercup in a field of clovers

Purple flowers in the garden

Purple flowers in the garden

Don't ask me what the traffic cone is doing in this scene: 

Flower pots and an orange traffic cone

This little guy hangs out on the porch:

Flying pig lawn ornament

Flying pig lawn ornament

Well I hope you've enjoyed these peeks into the yard I played in for my entire childhood. Maybe some other time I'll take my camera beyond their yard and into the surrounding woods, which is where the real party is. And by "party" I mean "fort-making territory." One's childhood should also be full of lots of fort-making, I always say. Always.

Have you ever taken your camera back to your childhood home to capture it through your adult eyes? Don't you want to now??

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Friday, August 29, 2014

Life this Week: Unpacking, Friendshipping, Building, Nail Painting

I'm finally starting to feel a litttttle bit more settled into my new home this week, thank GAWD. After what seemed like a string of bad luck, the clouds are parting a little and there hasn't been a terrible event in at least a few days. Phew.

So far one of the best things about being back in the Boston area is being able to hang out with friends. It's so nice to be able to see people casually again on a weekday evening without me needing to hurriedly squeeze in a visit before leaving town again. Although, I have to say, it's not that cool that public transportation makes a 3-mile trip take no less than 1 hour to complete. (Boston transit... you and I are gonna have to work this thing out.)

On Tuesday night I ventured from Medford to Cambridge to spend some QT with my little angel-faced doll of a friend Kara. (She has been a rock star in helping me feel more at home.) We watched a ton of the trashy E! television shows that have been missing from my life for way too long, as well as the wonderfully retro movie Now & Then (all while eating a chicken quesadilla that Kara made for me herself, #nom). The viewing of the latter was mostly because we couldn't find Aladdin available On Demand or Netflix. Next time.

Earlier this week I also got a gym membership at a Gold's Gym that's within walking distance of my home. If I know me - which I do - a gym within walking distance is my best bet for frequent workouts. And here's a funny thing that happened during that sign-up process:


So. That has spawned some discussion on my Facebook page haha. The people of Pittsfield clearly don't agree with the trainer's opinion of our dental reputation.

In other news, I keep realizing as I'm preparing food that I don't have the necessary kitchen utensils to complete my meal, and neither does my roommate. This has caused a bit of frustration and has spawned a running list of several basic things that my apartment still needs. Spatulas, can openers and pasta strainers - I'm lewkin' at yew guys.

Meanwhile, as seen on Instagram, I finally finished putting together one of the two dressers I ordered from Target for my new apartment. There has never been a more involved building process for such a cheap-ish piece of furniture. Literally took me 5 sessions spread out across as many days to complete, but once it was finished I was finally able to start putting away some of the clothes that have been COVERING every corner of my bedroom since August 17th.

White 3-drawer dresser with silver handle hardware

The white rug of my bedroom is becoming more and more visible by the day. Which reminds me, I need to buy some Resolve... because there is NO way that I'll be able to avoid getting that damn thing dirty. #ImClumsy #SpillsFindMe

As mentioned here yesterday, my friends Abby and Geoff are gettin' hitched this weekend, and YOU KNOW WHAT THAT MEANS. Party time, excellent, wheee-oooo, wheeee-oooo, wheeee-ooo!! #FriendshipFest2k14. There are friends coming from near and far to celebrate the momentous occasion. Geobby (obviously their celeb couple name) have been dating since they were BABIES practically, and the rest of us have been -UM- waiting for this day for a long damn time. That's one of the reasons I feel SO SPESH for being able to be a part of their wedding as a bridesmaid.

Annnd speaking of that, here is the nail look that I'll probably be sporting on Sunday for the wedding, using Jade Jump by Sally Hanson Insta-Dri and Dreamer by Revlon:

Jade Jump, jade and blue pastel nail polish

Dreamer by Revlon and Jade Jump by Sally Hansen, blue and mint pastel nail polishes


Since they're both pastels, you know that their first coats looked like a hot mess: 

Blue and mint pastel nail polishes
But they mostly evened out after the second coat. The blue nails are still a tiny bit patchy now that I'm looking at these photos, so I'll make sure to add a thin third coat when I recreate this on Sunday.

Dreamer by Revlon and Jade Jump by Sally Hansen, nail polish




On a related note, there was a recent important lesson learned in how not to move a box full of nail polish bottles across the country:

Oops! Broken nail polish bottle

Nail polish bottle broken in the box

Miraculously, it was only one single bottle of polish that broke inside of this box - but it covered dozens of other bottles in polish! The bottle that broke (the remnants of which is pictured below completely stuck to that other bottle of Insta-Dri) was actually one of the oldest (if not the oldest) nail polishes I owned. It was a Bath & Body Works purchase from middle school or high school - a pea-soup color that I probably haven't used in the last decade. 

Broken polish bottle
Next time I will use a hell of a lot more (read: any) bubble wrap in my packing of those little guys. I still can't believe my luck that only one bottle broke out of my entire 100+ bottle collection. Disaster avoided, somehow. I'll circle back to the first paragraph of this blog and just say it again: "PHEW."

...And I'll end this blog now before my luck runs out ;) Have a great weekend!

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