Friday, October 2, 2009

Follow Friday

When I first decided to do Follow Friday posts, I told myself that I really needed to monitor myself and make sure I was posting on a variety of blog types. My thought was that because I am really focused on running, health and fitness right now, I feared I may get in the habit of just featuring healthy living blogs each week. Of course, this isn’t a bad thing- there are SO MANY healthy living blogs that I truly adore reading and do plan on sharing with you over time. But I also have a long list of other blogs I read covering a wide range of topics, and I didn’t want to get in any kind of habit when I could share a plethora of information resources with you.

I told myself that I would try my hardest not to feature two healthy living blogs on back to back weeks. So, with last week’s focus on the fabulously talented and motivational Caitlin of Healthy Tipping Pointand Operation Beautiful, I have been thinking all week long about who to feature this week. I have a long list of bloggers I’m wanting to feature – and I promise I will- but everytime I started to brainstorm this post, my mind led me back to one person. Everytime I signed onto google reader, her posts left me thinking, and inspired. And although I definitely qualify her blog as “healthy living” – I definitely think reading her posts would benefit so many people- even those not interested in health and fitness.

This week’s Follow Friday is Angela at Oh She Glows.

Angela is an enthusiastic and honest writer who never fails to motivate and entertain me in her blog posts.

Angela has her own online bakery, Glo Bakery, which is a vegan bakery specializing in health bars [globars], although she does create many other vegan treats. US Shipping will be available VERY soon, and I am very excited for the day I am able to finally taste some of these wonderful looking treats.

Lately, Angela has been sharing her journey of her last year - (Part 1, 2, 3, 4)
telling of her experience with major life changes she’s faced in defining and pursuing her dream. And let me tell you- reading each of these four posts left me evaluating my own recent changes & questioning my own dream pursuing in a new light.

Angela is such a talented writer and storyteller. Sharing long, multi-part tales such as above, explaining her training for, racing in, and recovering from a half marathon, short stories featuring her adorable cat, and more- she has a way with words, that is for sure.

Angela also often shares recipes and cooking tips that are so wonderful! (her sweet & sour brown rice & chickpea recipe is one of my new favorite easy dinner meals.)

My favorite thing about Oh She Glows lately, is all of the posts Angela has been writing not just about nutrition, strength and body fitness- but about mind, emotions, and well being health. In the last few weeks she has posted on positive thinking, remaining stress free, emotions weighing in on physical health, default thinking, and more. Having a background working in research means lots of informative posts- but Angela’s blogs never go over-my-head. She puts even the most difficult of concepts into clear, easy to relatable ideas.

And it doesn’t stop there. There are so many more topics, ideas and creativity flowing around at Oh She Glows Go see for yourself!

Thursday, October 1, 2009

At Least I Wasn't Wearing Tights

Being October first, I must say a VERY Happy Birthday to the best friend a girl could ask for, Danielle Lyn, who will be here to visit in just two short weeks! HOORAY! Much Love from New York, my dear! xoxox

Being October first, last night I slept with five blankets, my heavy sweatpants over shorts, and a tanktop-teeshirt-longsleevedtee combo, and two pairs of socks.

And, being October first, when I woke up this morning, I had to give myself a SERIOUS pep-talk about the merits of getting my butt out of bed and into the shower. [Merit #1- keeping my job. Merit #2 – coffee. Merit #3- keeping my job. I’m just saying.]

And, being October first, I finally settled on the black cow-neck sweater dress that I’ve tried on five times since August, but argued every time that it was not time for a sweater dress.

And, being October first, instead of rocking leggings or tights with heels or high boots, I chose jeans and black flats, circa, you know, 2004.

 And, being October first, when I was leaving for work this morning, I put on my red puffy coat. [imagine my surprise when I felt like it was swallowing me. Apparently my losing 20+ pounds since last fall has had an effect on my outerwear.]

So, because I was wearing my red puffy, now too large for me, coat to work this morning, and, of course, being October first, I took out the coat rack.

We have a coat rack for the lobby area at work, but it’s not really pretty- more industrial looking, and we hide it during the warm months because there is no reason for anyone to really use it.  And if a guest does come into the building and needs a place to hang their suit jacket or windbreaker, I am more than willing to become temporary “coat girl” and walk it back into the storage-ish side room of my “office” [aka: reception area/lobby].

So today, I took the coat rack out and put it in the proper place. Which, if I am facing the window/computer/entrance, would be behind me to my left.  Out of my view. Unless I turn my head ever so slightly to the left. [do you see where this is going?]  After hanging my coat, my “incase I’m forgetful” cardigan, and a co-workers hardhat, I went about my day.

A few stats for you:

number of times today I have thought the coat rack was a person:  14.
number of times I thought so to the point of jumping in startledness: 3
number of times I jumped from startledness, bumped elbow into desk, and fell off my stool, landing on the floor: just the once. 

bet you're sad you missed that one.

Apparently, although I have been noticing during my stretching that running and even perhaps my pretending-to-know-what-I’m-doing-at-home-yoga-sessions are making me more flexible, it’s done very little for my clumsiness. Shocking, I know.

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Soup Nazi strikes again.

Things that are slightly scary: Tomorrow is the first day of October. [seriously- where did September go?]

Things that are more than slightly exciting: Fall is officially here. [hip hip hooray!]

Although the first day of autumn official rolled in last week, it’s beginning to become even more apparent that fall has arrived; the cooler temps, early leave changing, and fall-type produce filling up the stores shout to me daily.  And let me tell you, I love fall.

College Football. Pumpkin Spice Soy Lattes. Hooded Sweatshirts. Leaves changing. Leaves Falling. Leaves Crunching under my feet.  Farmers Markets filled with Pumpkins, and Squash, and Bushels upon Bushels of Apples.  Green ones. And Red Ones. Crunchy and Sweet. Crisp Air. Bonfires, which leave the smell of smoke in your hair overnight. Pre-Holiday Excitement (before all the hustle & Bustle sets in).  And Thick, Warm Dinners of chili or soup. [and this is only the beginning].

Last night I found myself dodging puddles on my way into Panera for a dinner appointment. It was dark and cool outside, and the drizzle of the chilly rain was awakening.  I’ve been on a mission to try new things since July, and I knew I had to pick something off the menu I hadn’t had before.  I finally settled on a cup of Summer Corn Chowder and ½ a Grilled Mozzarella & Tomato Sandwich. Both were excellent and the portion size was so large I was able to take some home with me for lunch leftovers today which is a definite bonus to any tasty meal, if you ask me.

The bold flavor and creamy warm goodness of the soup left my brain a wandering to all the great ingredients I have in my kitchen to experiment with, soup-style.  And then I realized that a Soup Recipe Swap would be JUST THE TICKET to open up October with a happy spoon, and a happy tummy. 

So, I challenge YOU, dear reader, to join the swap. How wonderful would it be to expand your menus for the next few months with a few pots of deliciousness that keep you warm and filled with goodness?

Are you in? Super Internet Soup Swap 2009 Instructions:

DECIDE:  Do you already have a go-to favorite soup recipe you would like to share? Are you feeling creative and wanting to spend a little time experimenting in the kitchen? Are you itching to try using your favorite ingredient in a soup?

SEND: Once you have your recipe ready, send me a copy to  Please feel free to include a photo of your soup, and/or a description of your experience if you’d like. Please have all recipes sent to me by October 15th.

GIVE: If you are a blogger, feel free to share your soup recipe, experience and photos on your blog with your readers.  If you do not blog, feel free to share your recipe the “old fashioned way” ;)

TAKE: I will be posting all the recipes I receive (and a few of my own favorites) on ThenHeatherSaid throughout October and November. If you would like your blog/website to be featured when I post your soup recipe, please include this information in the email.

Finally, I will leave you with this;

Six Reasons to Swap Soup
1. Warm Soup Warms the Soul

2. Freeze Attack – making soup in a big batch and freezing smaller portions for later is such a great way to get home cooked meals on busy days!

3. Bloggers:  Soup + Swap = link love
4. Soup is a great way to use up “last day” produce.  Get inspired by some veggies on their last leg.
5. You may find your go-to “what to bring” dish.
6. Soup is great for sharing

Then Heather Said, “Yes! Soup for You!”

3 on 3

- lack of support. He believed in me more than I ever did, always encouraging me and pointing out my talents and giftings. When I struggle, I don't have that voice to comfort me. When I'm scared, no hand to hold. No love-texts throughout my days. No emails peptalks before hard work days or hard emotions. I'm running everyday by myself. And when I cross the finishline at my first 5K, no one will be there cheering specifically for me.

+ I am forced into a corner of self-discovery, and selfishness. Defining my dreams and taking steps to get there without having to factor in the effects on my husband or our first year of marriage. I am dead center in the begining of a new season in my life and I can be concerned with myself. Although it's sometimes scary and overwhelming, it is exciting and challenging!

- I miss him. So often I think about seeing him, talking to him, hearing his voice, feeling his arms surround me, being encouraged by him, laughing with him, knowing we can change the world together. I miss his acting silly, I miss his forehead kisses, I miss his drumming everything, I miss his ability to make bad days good again, and the way he made me feel special. I miss his eyes, his smile, his goofy laugh. I miss being reminded of what he had survived and how lucky we were. Everyday, I miss him.

+ I get to pick what I watch EVERYDAY. I can eat peanut butter and cook with it EVERYDAY. If I want to go somewhere in the evening, I can, EVERYDAY. And I never have to listen to any music I don't like. I don't have to compromise. I get to be selfish.

- I sleep in the bed we had picked out for our marriage bed. It is way too big for just me.

+ I sleep in a big bed, alone. I can sprawl if I want to. I can sleep in the very center if I want to. I can sleep diagnol if I want to. I can be selfish with the whole bed. Mostly though, I just sleep on one side, and feel the void next to me; knowing I'm better off in everyway to be sleeping alone.

Sent on the Sprint® Now Network from my BlackBerry®

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Top Ten Tuesday

In rereading my last few posts, I’ve started to feel a bit like the annoying friend who won’t stop talking about her new relationship. Only in this case I’ve been talking about my new lack-of-relationship.  Now, don’t get me wrong: the entire reason for starting “Then I Said” was to offer a genuine & honest look into the process of everything that happens post-broken engagement. 

But while I was hanging out with a few local pals LAST Tuesday evening, I caught myself mentioning my former fiancĂ© more times than I would like to admit to right here on the blog.  Little sarcastic (and slightly bitter) comments about the situation, sharing stories he happened to be in, and discussing my making it 2 months without talking to him (my friends’ responses? “make it four!” and “take a shot! Cheers!”)  And then I noticed the blog has had a similar tone lately- and while I do want to chronicle the healing-being strong-getting my life in order-being-better-than-ever-journey here, the journey is not ALL about the broken engagement and the healing broken heart. It’s about a WHOLE BUNCH of other stuff, too. 

I know this shocks you all, after my admittance to being a list-lover, but back in the day (circa 2004) I would make a top ten list every day.  It was a simple way to update my readers, friends, family, and youth students (at the time, via myspace) of what was going on in my life.

Little tidbits of trivia, quick reviews of products I had recently purchased, shout outs to other writers, music/movie suggestions, and the like; my top ten lists were a plethora of information.  And I think it’s time to bring them back.

Then I said, “It’s time for Top Ten Tuesday!”

1. I’m now officially running 2 5K’s this fall (so far), each in a different state. Meaning that after November 8th, I will be 48 states away from the big goal [running a race in all 50 states.] An engineer in my office is currently applying for his PE licenses in various states.  I told him we should race to see who gets all 50 states first.  He agreed, but not after pointing out that he is able to apply from his desk for all 50 states and I actually have to travel to each of them.  This did not stop me.  Another co-worker made us special competitive USA maps for us to color each state in when we complete it.  Of course, his current map has 3 states colored in and I have none. I better get racing.

2. In just 2.5 weeks, my Best Friend, Danielle, will be here to visit.  I am v. excited to have her come over to visit and I’m only slightly anxious about figuring things out to do and keep her entertained.  Don’t get me wrong- I know we would both be find just hanging out doing “nothing” all weekend- but I want to make sure she enjoys this vacation and something tells me running everyday and writing blogs is not on the list of things she would enjoy.  I’m just saying.  I do see gelato in our future though :) Hopefully there is some sort of fun fall type free activity going on in the capital district that weekend. 

3. This also means, in pure Heather form, I have a ton of stuff to “accomplish” before she gets here.  As in, find something for her to sit on while she visits.  Since I now live on my own, the apartment originally chosen for the “marriage apartment” is now the “bachelorette pad” and I may have only made it so far as putting together a bedroom, kitchen, and office/craft room.  That’s right. My living room is empty.  Ok, that’s not entirely true.  My living room has my weights, a TV & player for Jillian Michael’s DVDs, and lots of space for stretching, yoga, and at home strength training. Operation: Find something comfortable to sit on, has now begun. 

4. This past weekend, I helped my boss with her last Estate Sale at her fathers’ home. After the last 3 months of helping her go through the house, sheds, garage and basement, she has paid me in MORE than enough wonderful goodies to take home to my once empty apartment.

I now have a very cool small table & chair for me to use as a writing desk, two end tables, a tall pantry type storage cabinet (which I will be refinishing/painting), and on Thursday I will be getting a recliner. (something for Danielle to sit on?!) I’ve also returned home with many, MANY boxes of very cool kitchen stuff, garden stuff & general house stuff.  Tonight I hope to unpack the last few boxes and fill my apartment with kitschy goodness :)

5. I’ve noticed that I’ve been smiling at cute guys a lot lately.  While I’m out shopping, or on runs, or just running errands of one sort or another.  And I think it’s boosting my confidence. It’s easy.  See attractive gentleman.  Make eye contact. Smile. Receive smile or nod in return (and sometimes a “Hello”). Carry on.  Why didn’t anyone ever tell me about this?

6. Fall is my favorite season for a WIDE variety of reasons.  But one thing I have learned I’m not happy with: sunrise at 6:45 and sunset at 6:45 means I have VERY little time to run in daylight.  And I know with winter around the corner, I will be faced with even less sunlight.   I think I may need to start looking for a gym in the area to join.  Anyone have any reviews of Planet Fitness?

7. I’ve been watching TV shows on DVD the past few weeks.  I am currently on last season’s One Tree Hill (season 6).  And I must tell you- I’m loving it. I especially love scenes when all the girls all together. They have this sarcastic/loving/fun relationship going with all of them now and it makes me my heart all warm and fuzzy. Also makes me miss my girlfriends.

8. I’ve decided to put away the scale for a bit and focus more on my fitness goals and less on my losing weight goals. I still plan on continuing my healthy eating habits and striving for reaching a healthy BMI- but there are other things I think are more important for me to focus on. Like running 3.1 miles non-stop, for instance.

9. Every time I think about this I get super excited: It looks like I will be spending Thanksgiving in the Twin Cities with Danielle, her husband Eric, and her brother, Brett. Brett and I actually graduated in the same class in high school and he is another one of my close friends so I am PUMPED to get to see them both, plus Eric, and be thankful.  Added Bonus: Ike Reilly concert.  Can. Not. Wait.

10.  I have one bumper sticker on my car. “love wins.” Do you have bumper stickers?

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