Tuesday, January 06, 2009

I Really, Really, Really Like It

My mom has a pair of [ractically new, barely worn tap shoes of mine from when I "really really really wanted" to take tap dancing lessons in middle school with my friend Emily. I took a free initial class, came back and told her I "really really really liked" tap class, convinced her to pay $60 for a pair of shoes even though she pointed out the shoes and classes were expensive and was I really really sure I like the class? (oh yes, I really really really love tap class! was my reply). Two lessons later I came back and told her I "really, really, really didn't like the class" and could I please quit?

Anyway, I bring this up because I found a Cardio Tap class that I really (really, really) want to take. The classes aren't that expensive - about $70 together for 10 classes - but the hitch is that I need to buy tap shoes for the class.

I told my mom that if I ended up not like the class, I'd send her my new shoes so she can keep them along with the ones I got twenty years ago.

Monday, January 05, 2009

Normal Work Days Suck

Today was my first normal full day of work in weeks. Even though I worked last week on New Year's Eve and the day after New Year's Day, we got out at 3 so I got quite accustomed to working less. Man, it draaaaaged today.

It's now officially illegal to text while driving so I was finally forced to get a blue tooth thing. It creeps me out - when I tested it out by calling Max, it sounded like he was in brain. I felt oddly violated. Wonder if that's what brain washing is like?

Went to the gym tonight to take a step class. I got there early so I ran a very slow and painful mile on the treadmill - man I'm out of shape! I have no idea how I was ever able to do a 10k...

Lisa and I are going to take a free hula hooping class on Saturday. I can't remember the last time I hula hooped, and I certainly could never hula hoop for more than a few seconds so Saturday's class should be um, interesting.

Pig is much better again today. She can get up and down the stairs with no problem. She's still a little wobbly and has a slight head tilt but I'm glad she's doing so well! Yay!

Sunday, January 04, 2009

2009 Resolutions

I've haven't really been thinking about my resolutions for this year since Pig's health condition has been first and foremost on my mind but now that I think she should make a full recovery, I figure I can take some time to give some thought to my resolutions for 2009.

First off because I've COMPLETELY forgotten about them I had to look up my resolutions for 2008 to see how I did last year. They were:

1) Get my wisdom teeth removed. My dentist has been bugging me about this for years and I'm finally going to take care of it this year.

2) Lose the muffin top! (don't laugh - I know I say this every year - or every week - but this is something I want to have happen)

3) Step out of my comfort zone and try new things. I am a total creature of habit and I want to challenge myself to do new things. Even little things like today - taking the bus - that's a great accomplishment for me. I know it sounds silly but I normally would never think of taking the bus. And I did it!

So. Hmm. I still have my wisdom teeth, so I didn't keep #1. Guess that goes on my list again this year.

I have a muffin top again, although I briefly lost it (or almost lost it) during early 2008 when I was working with a trainer a lot. Back on my list.

I can't say I've really stepped out of my comfort zone and tried new things...voluntarily. I mean, I've overcome a lot of different challenges and things I wasn't used to at work this year, but none of that was voluntary. I didn't try surfing, as Max did (although really, everyone who knows me advised against it and was thoroughly certain I wouldn't enjoy it). I haven't made any new friends, except ones from work, and that doesn't really count b/c we're not friends outside of the office. I haven't taken up any new hobbies or sports. I cut my hair really short, but then again, I've done that before, so that's hardly stepping out of my comfort zone. Hmph. Have been a bit of a loser in that sense this year. OH - well - I did do those 5K and 10ks! That was something different and new.

Okay, so I guess 2008 was yet another year of broken resolutions. Oh well.

So, for 2009, I resolve to:

1) Get my wisdom teeth removed. Especially now that I have a great dental plan.

2) Lose the muffin top! I just feel like this is a losing battle but if I stop the fight, I'll be 400 lbs and will wear sweats for the rest of my life. Seriously. Did I mention that over the holidays, when I couldn't decide between a coney dog and an Arby's roast beef sandwich for dinner that I just decided to have both? AND the curly fries that came with the Arby's roast beef sandwich combo, b/c a combo is such a better deal that just buying the sandwich alone? And that when I was having lunch at Olga's with Yana, who I haven't seen in ten years, I felt it necessary to order an orange creme cooler, a large UNLIMITED REFILLS olga's salad with Olga's pita snackers, AND an olga's chicken fajita???

3) Step out of my comfort zone and try new things. 2008 was a bit lonely for me with all my best gal pals leaving the state to follow their men. I like the regular guys I hang with, but I really need to make more female friends, so I think it'd be good to look into some book clubs, knitting clubs, or just generally anything where I might be able to meet some more wimmin' folk.

4.) Floss or use listerine daily. Yep, this one is back on the list. I am just soo soo bad about taking care of my teeth, and I've basically ignored my various dentists' pleas to please floss and now it's occurred to me that really - ignoring health advice for 20 years could be a bad idea.

5.) Save $$$$ - Recession = not blowing money on stupid things like that stupid Peticure thing I saw on TV that doesn't work but I've waited to long to return it so I'm out $60, excessive bar tabs, $20 lunch salads from the Whole Food Salad Bar (how on earth do I manage to make a 3 lb salad anyway?), and clothes that will fit when I lose 10 lbs and grow two inches in the chest and 3 in the ass.

5.) Be a better person aka the Miscelleneous Category. For me, and I think for everyone, you have a good sense of where you need self improvement - whether it's something as small as learning to be more patient, more on time (god I'm bad at that), and remember birthdays... there are all these little things that I just wish I were better at, so I'm just going to clump them in this Miscellaneous Category and resolve to just be more aware of things I could do better...it's sort of cheating but they're my resolutions so I can do what I want. :)

So, that's that. I think I'm going to try to post monthly on my progress so I can see whether I'm sticking to them!!

Weekend Recap

First one of the year...

Pig is much better today. Her eyes have calmed down and she isn't really falling over unless she's trying to poop, which is understandable - that requires more balance! She's still not eating her regular dog food for breakfast. Maybe she is more nauseous in the morning? However, she did leap up when the automatic feeder went off for dinner, so I think she is well on her way to a full recovery. She still has a slight head tilt, which makes her look adorably quizzical. We're just so thankful it did turn out to be old dog vestibular syndrome, and not something worse.

I really didn't do much this weekend except stay home with Pig. Since I was home I decided to tidy up the apartment so I've basically reorganized every closet and drawer in the apartment. I can't believe how messy we've gotten over the years! And how much garbage we threw out! I still have one last closet to do, but I got tired of being so tidy so I figure that one can wait until next weekend. Max and I have an ongoing competition on who can lose the greatest body fat percentage each week (loser has to do all the chores - cleaning bathroom, cleaning kitchen, laundry, garbage and more). I've actually lost every single week since we started this back in December EXCEPT for this past week. We both gained weight over the holidays, but he gained more so he has to clean - whoo hoo!!!

Apart from tidying the apartment, I really haven't done much this weekend. I finished the third book in the Twilight series. I seriously am not a huge fan of the series, but somehow I feel compelled to just finish it. I totally find all the characters annoying and just so...stupid and naive. I guess there really isn't an inner 13 year old girl in me anymore. Just on the outside - for the love of god, how is it possible to get wrinkles AND zits??? I am friggin' 30 - shouldn't this acne phase have passed by now???

What else? I did do a little exercising. Our annual girls Vegas trip is only about a month away and there's no way I can cram myself into a little Forever 21 halter top at this moment so I'm going to have be very very good for the next 30 days or so. Yesterday I did a work out with these resistance bands my brother got me for Xmas. Most of it went well, except I messed up this one leg workout and ended up shooting myself in the ass with a large rubberband. Ouch. Today I went "hiking" at Runyon Canyon. I use "hiking" in quotation marks because it's not really hiking - I mean there is a hill, but it's not like you have to carry backpack and a can of beans to go. It was packed today, but no celebrities. I've seen Drew Barrymore, Jack Gyllenhaal, and Sarah Jessica Parker (or a really really skinny blond stripper) there before.

So now it's Sunday night. I'm watching the 21 Sinful Spots in Vegas on Travel Channel right now...sad to say I haven't been to any!!

Saturday, January 03, 2009

Latest Pig News

Well, I think Pig is definitely (hopefully) on her way to a full recovery. This morning, she was able to make it down some stairs and her head tilt seemed a little less pronounced. Her eyes were better this morning, but seem to be flickering a bit more tonight, which is consistent with what we've noticed is in the past few days - she seems to do better in the morning and during the day. At least there's been some improvement. Walking her is still a slow and cautious process for all three of us (she gets escorted by both Max and me), but she can make it up the stairs fairly well now. So, I'm hoping this all means that it was just an ear infection and not a brain tumor thus causing her disorientation and symptoms.

Thanks again for the well wishes and kind thoughts!! Hopefully this is a short episode and I can go back to blogging about her poop, my endless attempts to reduce the muffin top, and other drivel.

Friday, January 02, 2009

Pig Update

Pig didn't seem much better this morning and absolutely did not want to be dragged and carried out at 6 a.m. (the dirty looks she gave us!), but she did finally drink water from her water bowl, which I took to be good sign. When I got home from work, she was able to walk to me without falling over, and seemed much more energetic so I'm hoping she is on her way to recovery. Up until this evening, she's only had an appetite for cookies and people food but tonight I was able to hand feed her some regular dog food and ultimately get her to follow a little trail of dog food bits to her bowl. And then she ate all her dog food from her bowl, so I think that's really good. I guess dogs that get this old dog syndrome refuse food and water initially because they're nauseous and may not have the motor skills to be able drink/eat out of bowl. So, I'm thinking it's good that she can now. I can't tell you how strange it was to see a dog bowl full of food for over 24 hours just sitting out on the kitchen floor. And to hold up dog food to her mouth but have her turn her head away. It was so weird. Her eyes are still flickering - the vet said that usually the first signs of improvement are with the eyes, so I'm hoping those settle down soon. Hopefully I'll have even better news to report tomorrow.

Thursday, January 01, 2009


Happy New Year's!

Max and I celebrated New Year's Eve like old people - since we were both still sick we just stayed in. We barely made it to midnight - hopefully that's not going to set the tone for 2009!

Actually, today has not been a great day, although maybe in the long run, it is good? Woke up and went to take Pig out and as we were getting ready, she suddenly started to shake, fell over to one side, and couldn't get back up. She kept tilting her head to one side, and when I tried to give her a cookie she couldn't find it - like she kept moving her mouth around my hand but not landing on it. It was really really stressful and very scary. I was convinced she had a stroke. Max and I had to carry her down to the car and we headed immediately to the nearest pet emergency room. I didn't even want to take the extra 20 mins to go to our regular vet - I figured if it was a stroke, time was of the essence. We had the hardest time getting her in there and it took everything to not start sobbing once the receptionist asked me what was wrong with her. Luckily, the emergency room vet said that he thought she had something called old dog vestibular syndrome. They don't know what causes it, but sometimes it can be caused by some inner ear inbalance, which causes the dog to not be able to stand up straight and be disoriented. The vet said her right ear is indeed inflamed, and she has all the rest of the symptoms, including loss of balance, this rapid eye movement where eyes keep her moving up, and the head tilt. I guess it can take 3-4 days for recovery. He prescribed antibiotics for the inner ear. I was feeling fine about it until our neighbor (the woman who pet sat for us this holiday season) saw her and said that she had a client who had the exact same symptoms, with the exact same diagnosis, but then it turned out to be cancer - a brain tumor. I'm trying to be optimistic, and really, there's no reason to believe her over the vet, but it's been really hard. Pig is definitely not feeling well - she doesn't seem to want water, and she keeps staggering around like a drunk. It's almost funny, if it weren't for the fact that I'm terrified it's cancer. I seriously don't know what I'll do if that's what is is. She's also just uncomfortable - I mean, I would be if I were her. I guess all the nerves and the signals to her brain get scrambled so she's dizzy and disoriented. The doc suggested giving her Benadryl, which helps calm the brain down, so that did help, but as soon as it wore off, the crazy googly eyes and staggering started again. She can't get down the stairs herself, so Max has to carry her when she has to go out. It's just incredibly painful to see her this way.

I started this post tho saying that maybe it is a good day aftter all tho - if it turns out to be what the vet thinks it is and not stroke or cancer, old dog vestibular syndrom has a strong chance for full recovery. Some owners have reported that their dogs seem to be much older (failing eyesight, reluctance to take longer walks) after getting it, but they don't know if the episode really causes the damage or if it's just natural aging. And, recurrences are very rare, so hopefully it won't happen again.

We are just going to stay positive and trust that the vet has diagnoses her properly. If she doesn't improve by Sunday, we're going to have to send her to a neurologist for an MRI. But hopefully it won't come to that.

Recap of Trip to MI - Part Two

The rest of my trip back to MI proved to be as fun as the first half. On Christmas Eve, my mom, brother and I went down to MGM Grand and Greek Town - two casinos in Detroit. The MGM Grand is really nice actually and looks quite a bit like Vegas, except for the clientele, which did not look like the standard Vegas fare - middle aged tourists and spring breakers (or in the first week of February, a bunch of 30 some year old women dressed in Forever 21 outfits - I am so excited about our annual girls Feb trip to Vegas!!) but rather some depressed locals with a gambling problem. I mean, really, who goes to a casino on Xmas eve? Besides us, that is?

At night we had a great dinner - filet mignon, scallops, potatos, green beans, and more. I made this stuffing that Rebecca has made for our Thanksgiving meals in the past. It is really good, and not like normal stuffing, which is why my family loved it. They kept calling it "bread pudding" because it's made with challah bread and dried fruit. My brother did most of the cooking - turns out, the guy can cook! Afterwards, we played Texas Hold'em, and this other card game called Big 2, thus continuing the family tradition of celebrating the birth of baby jesus by gambling and taking money from each other.

On Christmas Day, my sister made this awesome french toast breakfast - really good stuff. I think everyone in my family can cook but me!! Then we opened presents (I got some really great ones) and then headed over to Dad's for more eating and celebrating, and yes, more gambling! Dad made an excellent "seafood soup" with scallops, giant shrimp, and fish. We had some other sides as well. More presents and Big 2 afterwards - all in all a really great time.

The day after Xmas, my dad, bro, sis and I headed down to the Detroit. It's so weird - I spent more time in Detroit this trip than I have in the last 20 years. First, we grabbed a quick lunch in Greek Town (not the casino, but the actual area). We stopped in a little Rachel Ray $40-a-Day endorsed restaurant. It was pretty empty but the food was good. Next we headed to the Detroit Institute of Art to catch this new exhibit - "Monet to Dali: Modern Masters from the Cleveland Museum of Art." It was a really good exhibit and had some excellent works (not that I really know much about art, but it did seem like a good collection - hell, at least I recognized the names of the artists). I hadn't been down to the DIA in forever. Seriously. I think the last time was a school trip in 5th grade. At night, I went to Thode's annual Day After Xmas Bash at her parents place. It was awesome and everyone had a great time. It's so weird out to see friends who I normally hang out with in LA in a different setting. I got to catch up with Thode and Rebecca, who I don't get to see very often anymore. We had this super yummy hot crab dip, tons of hors d'oevres, and a honey baked ham as well. When we were full of food, we headed out to Nectos, this bar in Ann Arbor that I used to go to. Again, very weird to be back there. My college friends and I had many a fun night there playing "Ring Around the Tool" (long story) while we were in school.

Saturday we went to Windsor for dim sum and - guess what - more gambling! Again, I haven't been to Windsor since probably college. The food was pretty good, and the Caesars Casino there is great! I left up about $100, which was really good b/c at one point I was down by $60. Luckily I found a hot black jack table and was able to catch back up. My brother was up by practically $300 (or even more, I can't remember...)! Since we were "winners" we picked up the dinner tab at a place called Sangria in Royal Oak. It's a Spanish restaurant with great tapas and paella and of course, sangria.

On Sunday, I met up with Dad to catch a matinee. Having had a crush on Keanu since Speed, I wanted to see The Day the Earth Stood Still, but it was sold out, so we were stuck with Bedtime Stories. Definitely a kids movie, and I'm definitely glad the tickets were only $5 each. Afterwards, Dad and I picked up some Thai food and watched the rest of the NFL games. We're both in the same pool so we had a reason to watch, but sadly neither of us won (altho he won the week before, so that's good). Turns out, Max's Grandma Jeannie won - congrats!!

Sunday night was rough - I realized I'd caught the cold that Forrest had on Friday at the party (same cold that Max is still sick with), so I had to take Monday a little easy, even tho I had some cool plans. First, I met up with an old friend from high school. I hadn't seen her in 10 years!! It was great catching up and meeting her adorable two year old. After that I met up with Mrs.Elliotpreciouspants, who also had an adorable two year old in tow. I think the amazing thing about meeting up with old friends is that it's soo easy to just catch up and fall back in place. Like I can imagine that if I lived in MI, I'd see both of them regularly.

I left MI on Tuesday, after a fantastic 12 day trip. The flight back was okay, although I think that whole charging for luggage is just criminal. When I found out my second bag would cost $25 extra (on top of the $15 for the first one), I decided to just carry it on, which was really uncomfortable but whatever. $25!! That's insane.

This trip back was my first time back for Xmas in years and it reminded me that I need to go back more often. :)