Comfort Zone

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

What is this picture?!
This is a pictorial representation of my comfort zone, 18 inches x 18 inches.
Nicole is a creature of habit--I will eat the same thing in a restaurant, I will 'cook' the same thing in my house, I will do the same routine in the morning, I walk the same route every time with Brody, etc. When something gets thrown in that doesn't belong, sometimes I'm not quick to react or it just throws me completely off and I have a hard time getting back in my little square.
In some aspects of life, I'm reaching a big toe out of the box, sometimes even the whole foot! for example: I finally got fed up at work and made some changes, I stood up for myself and I ran away to another group. lol. Actually, I'm just doing a rotation, but I'm learning new stuff and I'm gaining confidence.
I also branched out in the gym. I was always afraid that I would make a fool out of myself or that I wasn't fit enough to be working out to be fit (crazy Nicole logic), but finally I said "screw that, I need to shrink my tush" and I go and work out now and if anyone wants to watch me go right ahead, I really don't care.
Another area I pushed my boundaries was with Internet dating. I definitely don't want to rehash all that craziness, but just to mention that it took a lot for me to try and do that.

If you stand back and look at these few examples they all happened because I was at some breaking point. I guess that is how the universe works--for every force, there is an equal and opposite force.
So what is my next adventure!? Heaven help me it is speed dating. It was recommended by a few different people, but I always shot it down immediately because I couldn't imagine putting myself in front of someone and having them judge me in 5 to 7 minutes, it goes against every fiber of my being and just the thought could send me running for the potato chips. However, a force came by and is pushing me again, causing me to react. The internet dating was part of it, the sheer volume of idiots and crotch shots is enough to cause anyone to run away, but it was also learning that I am someone special too. I finally figured out that I'm not such a bad catch--I'm successful, have a cool grumpy dog, damn funny, know the difference between your and you're, artistic, great friend, love to travel, I read, and I'm just an over all good person. Now all I have to do is sit down across from a guy, portray that chick I just described and let ME judge HIM for 5 to 7 minutes.
It is not going to be easy for me to do it, but I guess anything in life worth doing well is not easy, right? I'm very nervous, I'm scared that the old Nicole will pop up and I'll go running for the nearest exit (and knowing my luck, it will be an emergency one and I'll set off the alarm). I'm very comfortable around my friends and others that I know, but in a 'stranger' situation, I like being a wall flower, I don't 'work the room'--I wouldn't know how to work a room if you paid me. So, my goal for the next three weeks until this event happens is try to overcome this anxiety and have fun with this.
I'll keep you posted...

How About Them Apples

Monday, January 16, 2012

I can remember it well... it was the 3rd birthday of Matteo's last January, there were cupcakes and pizza and chips and cookies and clementines! The clementines were for those who were trying to eat better, I was 'trying' at the time, so I thought I would grab one, I couldn't remember the last time I had one. It was heaven. I had found a new 'healthy' snack.
So began my obsession with clementines. I would buy two or three 5lb bags at a time, and they would not last in the house long. I would have a few after my eggs in the morning, a few after lunch, a few when I got home and a few for 'dessert'. I LOVED THEM.
And then it happened one day... I looked down at my hands and they looked like I had been playing in self-tanner, my feet looked similar. I was eating so many oranges that my hands, feet and even my elbows were turning an ugly shade of fake orange/yellow color. There is some chemical in them that if you eat it at an alarming rate (I passed that months ago at this point), your body can't flush it and it tints parts of your body. This was NOT a healthy snack.
I knew I needed a clementine intervention. I admitted to myself as I looked at my fake-tan hands that I need to quit the clem. Nicole knows no moderation on things she loves, I knew I had to go cold turkey. It was difficult at first, I craved the natural sugar, but it got better after a while. It also helped that they soon went out of season, I wasn't being faced with them at the grocery store every time I walked in. My fake-tan hands and feet turned back to normal after about six weeks; yes, it took that long to get all that chemical out of my system.

After some time, Jodie recommended I try apples, she was sick of me mourning the clementines.
Let the angels sing!! I found Gala apples!
Now I'm an apple freak and I'm proud to say it. Way better than the clementines, they last longer in my belly, and they satisfy the crunch factor I need. Nature rocks! I eat three apples a day--one as part of my breakfast, one as an afternoon snack and one as my dessert.
I have found the best place to get Gala apples at Tar.get, no lie. They are the freshest and the best price. I will go out of my way to go to Tar.get to get my apples.
However, I'm running into an issue... it seems that Gala apples are getting out of season, there are tons of other ones, but the selection of Galas is decreasing. In anticipation of walking into Tar.get and not seeing my apples, I bought one of each of the other kind this weekend and did a taste test. NOPE. Nothing compares to my Galas. So with that, I'm hoping not to have another fruit meltdown, please let them stay around long enough for apple season to come back and more are available, I don't even mind paying a bit more for them.
To add salt on the wound... you have to walk past the clementines to get to the small selection of apples.
Damn delicious fruit.

New Year, New Approach

Tuesday, January 03, 2012

Happy New Year!! I hope everyone had a fun and safe holiday season.

So, I'm taking a new approach on things. I've been all over the map with trying to eat right, get on that weight losing train again, staying upbeat during a tough battle, dealing with happy and sad family emotions and finding out who I really am.
Its enough to make someone crazy--oh wait! I am. Just Joking (kinda)

Anyway, I want to blog again. And I'm not going to put down all the "boohoo, Nicole is sad crap", I'd done with that. There are many moments and many people who bring smiles to my face everyday, and I believe they define me more than those sad moments do. So I shall be sharing those things that fit the name of this blog better. I have a lot of stories to share and I hope these bring a smile to your face or make you think.

Let's start off with Fac.ebo.ok:
At first I wasn't all into it, I wasn't looking forward to putting it on my phone or anything like that, but things have changed. I absolutely LOVE reading FB at different times of the day. To see how my friends children are acting that day/watching them grow or reading how a friend almost got trampled by cows trying to do a daily walk or seeing the picture of a new tattoo celebrating a milestone or sharing thoughts about a TV show they finally watched or to see the new nail polish they put on. All fun stuff. It is interesting to see a glimpse in the daily lives of people I care about. Some would say "who cares" about the color of some one's nail polish; I care, therefore, I shall continue to read.

Life Book:
I was introduced to this item by two good friends of mine:
It is a "Life Book" and it is the perfect item to keep track of certain aspects of your life. I don't record birthdays, work meetings or personal appts in this book, I record items like: what time I ate and what went in my pie hole, my weight for the morning (heading south slowly), how I felt that day and how many steps I did (my goal is 11,000 daily). There are spots each week for goals and to do lists, and at the beginning of the month there is a few lined sheets for random notes you want to put down. I found myself writing little reminders to myself or a quote from a song I like and going back days or weeks later to re-read them. This book is also a great size, not too big where you question if you should throw it in your bag and not to small where it will get lost within the piles of junk lying have around.
So, if you ever wanted to keep a food log or health log or a diary, check this thing out, it might be for you.
Side note: the retail price on this thing is waaaaay high. I love it, but $50 is hard to swallow for a really cute notebook. Thru a series of specials, I got it for $18, and for that price, it is worth every penny. The specials were listed on yeah, yeah, this is a site for 'mom's' but so what; they have good deals on things that keep mothers sane, why can't I capitalize on that as well?!

I've talked about this before, so I'm not going to re-cap everything. What I do want to discuss is how I now know I'm not alone. A friend introduced me to this blog: I snort loudly every time I read her stuff. She has super quick wit and pulls no punches; she also talks about her dating life and some of her stories are things I have encountered too, scary how some things are universal.
I was also talking to the niece of my sister's close friend (yeah, stop and think of that trail), she is single and trying to date as well (but she is 29 with legs that don't quit and jet black hair, not 38 with legs that stop way short and gray root touch up), we were comparing stories over wine. One topic that came up is the amount of "junk" pictures we get sent to us. Not "junk" as in fake rolex adds or how you have a dead relative in Africa sitting on a fortune, but "junk" as in a guy's lower region. We were both laughing so hard, I thought wine was going to come out of our noses at one point.
Here are some examples of the lines that accompany these pictures:
"this could be yours this weekend!"
"this is what you're missing out on" (when you decide to stop communicating with them)
"I was bored after work so I thought I would snap a few pictures"
"I showed you mine, now you show me yours"
Yes, for those of you who are married and have missed the whole digital age of courtship, this is what is out there now. How can you possibly want to go out with a guy and look him in the eye knowing what his "junk" looks like. And then, how do you know if it really is 'him'. Wow, there seem to be a LOT of guys walking around with a rather large amount of "junk" in their pants, they all beat what the average is suppose to be. The best part is 99.9% of the guys don't show their face, all you get is a close up of where their brains really are.
With all these wonderful pictures, along with emails offering to show me in person, I have decided to not Internet date anymore. It is no longer worth seeing the decline of humanity in my inbox, I would like to meet a gentleman, not a boy who is showing off.

I think I've been on my soapbox for long enough today, my feet are beginning to hurt.
I do plan on sharing more of my insights. Please feel free to comment, I would love to know what you're thinking too.

Smiles my friends!

37 Down, ? To Go...

Friday, September 16, 2011

I'm sitting here on the eve of my 38th birthday with root color in my hair and a charcoal mask "pulling out all the dirt and oil" from my face; wow, I know how to live it up don't I!?!? LOL

I've been composing this blog in my head for a few days now and I finally want to get it written and explain where I've been for the last year (kinda).
First, I will say that the ease of as made it quick and simple to get a thought out there ASAP, no waiting to sit down with a blog to share it with friends, just whip out the phone, type it out quickly, post and done. I'm blaming FB for my lack of posting, how about them apples. lol

In all honesty, I've been doing a bunch of private blogging. Needing to get my thoughts down without the whole world seeing my inner demons. Has it helped? Eh, some days it has, others not so much. But no looking back, only towards the future, right?

So, I want to share what I have learned over this last year and layout some goals for the next.
The first thing I have learned is that laying out goals doesn't always work in my favor. Yeah, yeah, yeah, I contradicted myself, but shut it, its my blog and I can do what I want.
I can no longer say "I want to do X by Y", it always seems to be a formula for failure for me and then I get up set and then I don't want to try to do what I said I was going to because I already failed, blah, blah, blah... Nope not going to do it. But I have modified it to be "one day, one meal, one workout at a time". That is all the forward thinking I can do, no more, no less. So that is #1 on my list...

1) One Day, One Meal, One Workout at a time

The next big thing I learned this year is that you really do need friends. I have felt that I leaned on my friends more this year than past years combined. They were there to lend an ear, get mad with me, give me advice, extend a helping hand or just offer their unwavering support. For that I am grateful beyond what I can express via this blog or even to their face. I love you dearly.

2) Your friends are YOUR friends for a reason, they will always love and support you. PERIOD.

I have also learned that guilt, regret and shame are powerful emotions that can slowly eat away at you and ruin all that you have worked for. They can keep you up at night, they can make you second and third guess yourself, and I'm sure they have cause gray hair & additional wrinkles. Work through them and keep fighting, and that is the light at the end of the tunnel and it is getting closer every day.

3) Nothing you can do about it now, keep fighting, move forward, learn.

This next lesson is one that I am just amazed about. I believe there are no quality, honest, and kind men left in this world (or at least in the greater Houston area). Part of my changed outlook after my surgery was to put myself out there, try to meet a guy. BAAWAAAHAAAA, so much easier said than done. I blame most of my problems with TV and 'chick flick' movies; you know what? F-U to all those shows that portray the last friend of the pact meeting a handsome man who wins over her friends with witty statements & charm and then sweeps her off of her feet and they live happily every after. F-U. Yeah, that does NOT happen. EVER.
I'm so conflicted on this one, do I completely give up, stop putting myself out there knowing that they aren't going to come knocking on my door OR do I keep kissing (and kicking) frogs to hopefully find 'my prince' one day, stay in the game. I do know this for sure, I do need a break, I am becoming jaded and that is the last thing I want. I don't want to be some bitter (fine, more bitter) chick then I already am.

4) Take a break from the guy search. Give yourself a rest from the Neanderthal men.

Let's change the subject to something more cheerful, shall we? The next lesson is... "I have talent". Everyone knows how much I love glass and how I love to learn new techniques & such, but this year has been a bit different for me. I was accepted into a local art gallery, which lead to an article being written about me, which will lead to who knows what. I will admit, I'm scared, but in that cool kinda way.

5) I have a talent and people appreciate my work

I have been growing my hair out since my surgery, I'll get it trimmed every 6 weeks or so, but for the most part, I've just let it go. I'm starting to really like it, I'm surprised that I do to tell you the truth. If I could survive the hottest summer on record for Houston with this long hair, there is no reason not to keep it.

6) When I want to chop all my hair off, don't let me, it will pass.

To be honest, I can't think of any more lessons to tell the 38 year old Nicole to follow. Maybe I'm getting old and just can't remember. lol. I do know this though, I wish I could tell that 22 year old Nicole a few things, or that 24 year old Nicole who just lost her mother, or 26 when she bought her first house, or 30 when she thought she was over the hill, or 34 when she cried that she STILL wasn't with someone, or that 36 year old Nicole who was being wheeled into surgery. So many things learned each day and so many more to come.

7) You rock!

I'm going to close this post with the top 3 of my "favorite" things I've had a guy email me or say to me. Get a laugh out of them, I am now (some not at the time).
Bonus lesson (learn 7, get one free)

8) It is their loss...

okay, top 3:
3) (after seeing a few additional pictures of me) "No thank you"
2) "I usually date cuter than you. If you'd like to come over and bleep, sure, but I wouldn't date you"
1) "You are wonderful, everything I've been looking for, I can see us together, blah, blah, blah, can you send me $3000?"

And there you guys go, my last year wrapped up into a nice blog posting. I hope it won't be until next year that I post again, I will try harder, but no promises...

The Blues

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Okay, so I had them this weekend--The Blues.
I swear my emotions are cyclical and I hate it. I even had a few moments of an ugly cry this afternoon hoping it would make me feel better; nope, it didn't. However, I was called out to a water balloon fight, so that was fun, I needed that. lol

Tomorrow is 5 months since my surgery and I'm stuck at 35 pounds. That is horrible! I feel like a failure, but I have to keep my head up, keep moving and remember that this is a TOOL!

"hey Nicole, you added a TOOL to you life, not a miracle"
"it is a TOOL for you to use, not a cure-all"
"it is not a license to eat anything you want, you still have to watch it, it is a TOOL"
"have you heard that it is a TOOL?"
Yes, these are the ramblings of the crazy Nicole.

But with these thoughts, one bright moment popped into my head... a moment I had on Friday.I was cleaning out my closet and I filled two over sized lawn bags with fat clothes!

While bagging things up, I came across two pair of jeans. I know I wore one pair of these jeans a week before my surgery... here I am modeling them...

sorry for the poor quality of pictures, I couldn't use the flash. But I think you see the point, look how far I HAVE come...
oh and these will be cut up in the very near future and then I shall hand over the squares to a more sewing talented person than I am and beg for help making them into a throw pillow cover.

I want to always know how far I've come! I'll post pics of the final product.

The Pants

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Okay, first let me apologize to my readers... you shall see in this post 1)my granny panties and 2)my gut sticking out of a pair of pants like sausage in a casing... there is a point to making you go blind.

Here are the pants...

I bought these pants probably 6 or 7 years ago... they are from Eddie Bauer, size 14 (which probably means a 12) and were on clearance when I bought them. One day I 'knew' I would wear them. I wish I had taken a picture of me trying to get them on before surgery, they would only have gotten a few inches past my knees once they started to hit the meat of my thighs. I can at least now get them over my thighs and butt up to my waist; buttoning them is another story.
I considered it a small victory that I can at least get them up and was quite shocked when they didn't stop at my hips. I even did a quick hip shake in celebration.
When i saw how far I could pull them on, I made a goal -- to wear these pants on my birthday at the D.MB concert!

I told my goal to Jodie tonight as we were driving to get our piggies done.
Nicole:"so, I have these pants...blah, blah, blah, 4 weeks from tomorrow until my birthday... blah, blah, blah"
Jodie: "Nicole, your b-day is in less than four weeks, it is almost the end of August"
Nicole: "Nah-uh, I counted" I pull out the ol' iphone
Nicole: "well son of a b*&^%. oh great, I'll never get these on in 3 weeks, 4 weeks was pushing it"
So I pout and call her a buzz kill. She reminds me that it was my fault for counting wrong and she was doing me a favor now instead of 2 weeks when I figured out I only had 1 week left"

So then I had to think what to do next. I'm changing my goal to ArtOberFest, I shall wear these pants at my booth at the festival. that is 7 weeks away (holy moly do I have tons of work to do) and that is a more reasonable goal.

so here is what the pants look like on me now...
(oh yeah, jodie, so I have more than a few inches to close on the pants... yeah, I was dreaming)

I think I'm going to take incremental pictures until I can close these suckers and walk around looking damn good!

Wish me luck!

So Much to Say...

Sunday, August 15, 2010

yes, Kelli, I know it has been a long time since I've posted--she seems to remind me every week that I've haven't updated my blog. And shame on me for not doing it either, there is so much to talk about...

So, we're about 4.5 months out from surgery, I'm hovering at about 35lbs lost, and 33.25 inches! The scale hasn't moved much, but my clothes are getting bigger. I think yoga is helping me add lean muscle which is helping me shrink, but not making the scale move much. I really do want to hit that 40lb mark before my birthday, it is driving me nuts.

So much has changed, and in this case, change is an awesome thing. I see myself so different than I ever have in my life. I feel strong, I act strong. I'm finally putting myself first for once and I like that feeling. My habits are changing also.

So i've been trying to meet some guys and date. Okay, dating should be fun, but its NOT. I'm tired of the emails/texts/first dates. Are all the good guys taken? Where I would have run for the hills with ice cream and carbs in hand and sulk that I'm not good enough for someone to love me, I'm doing the exact opposite. These guys are not good enough for ME. See-ya. I'm finally protecting myself and I'm realizing that I have worth--and it is an awesome feeling. I had a situation the other night where I was dismissed after he saw pictures of me, it hurt, I had a few tears, but then I threw on clothes and headed to yoga class. My life must go on and I'm loving this life that is growing each day.
I going to take a break from this guy finding thing for a while. I have a show I need to create pieces for and another 5lbs to work off. He is out there somewhere, I'll find him one day.

Yesterday was 13 years since my mom passed away. And even this I'm handling different. I miss her in a different way now. I know I'm light years away from being 'cured', but emotions and food don't have to be tied together. I just wish she could have learned that too. **sigh** I miss her so much.

On a happy note, I'm so looking forward to next month and going to Chicago. I was lucky enough to get tickets to the D.MB show at Wrig.ley field. Stacy, Kelli and i are going and we're going to have a blast! It is on the same day as my birthday and for once I'm so excited. I can't wait to get a really cool t-shirt that is NOT a uni-sex, boxy, standard concert tee, I want a cute girlie tee! I know, so silly, but it really is the little things that I find make me the happiest.
Oh! I found out that I do have hip bones, they were discovered during Yoga one night--shocking, I haven't felt them in forever!

Thanks for all the support my friends. I love you.

About Me

My photo

I'm a 30-something single chica who has two awesome dogs (Brody and Samson). I just moved into my 'dream' home, it was pure hell to get there, but the reward was sweet. I have an adiction to fused glass and built a studio above my garage to help support my habit.
These are the Mad Happenings of a Glass Princess...