Thursday, November 27, 2008

Happy Thanksgiving!

Happy Thanksgiving all! I have a lot to be thankful this Thanksgiving. I have a terrific husband, 2 great cats, a roof over my head, we have our jobs, both of our parents are still healthy (mine more than his), and we have our health.

Chris is going to make the turkey today and were going to take it down to his folks. He makes the turkey on the Webber Grill (charcoal) and it super yummy. Maybe I will try to get some pictures of him doing this. The turkey comes out pretty than a Martha Stewart Magazine. Really and the taste is amazing. It's our year at his folks so hopefully things will go well. I'm okay with his folks and feel comfortable around them but I have my usual uneasiness about his sister. Then we never know if his crazy aunt from Delaware is going to fly in so that's even worse. She's like SIL but 10x worse. Anxiety is high. I'm hoping that Chris is going to have a chat with his sister today about gift giving at Christmas where he notes "how about you don't buy for us and we will not buy for you" since brother in law is unemployed thanks to GM. Plus, I'm tired of getting all of the regifts. For our last birthday she gave us a spoiled bottle of wine that the cork was rotted out and it tasted like vinegar and for Christmas she gave us a salsa mix that expired in 2002. I know it's the thought but I'm struggling to find thought in those!

I wrote the folks a letter and they claimed that they never got my second message. Okay, I will take that but it appears that things are hammered out now. They noted that I "over reacted" but in this family, you never know. I think this all stems back to the issues over the holidays. My family has the tendency to do this, myself included. I don't know where it came from but the holidays were a stressful time when I was kid. It was not very happy around the home at Christmas especially when I was a teenager. I heard that Christmas is for little kids, etc. I remember going to church just being generally withdrawn and sad at Christmas while being a teenager. Maybe it stems back to my parents financial situation when I was a kid or maybe even their own upbringing because my dad was a foster child in the 30s-50s and my mom grew up in poverty in the hills of West Virginia. I don't necessarily remember them noting positive stories about Christmas time, just sad memories when they do come out because it's not spoken usually at all. For instance, at one foster home my dad was in, he thought he was getting a bike because he saw it. So he noted this to the foster mom and she noted "no you are not getting a bike" my dad noted that "I saw the bike" and when Christmas arrived no bike or anything else. He had no presents at that Christmas or hardly any at other Christmas's. That is sad. So maybe this is where my family gets all wacky about Christmas from the past. Those old feelings get churned up. My thing is that I am aware of this. I do tend to get unbalanced around the holidays with stress. Chris and I have been starting our holiday time so hopefully the stress will end. We have a nice Christmas Eve, have dinner, go to church, and come home to open gifts. I also notice that I get overstimulated at Chris's parents home when we go down there for Christmas. The materialism is over the top and it's hard for me. I noticed that I get grumpy and sullen. I don't mean to but I do. Another thing that is drilled into me is being practical. I was talking to Chris about this. I'm so practical that it's not even funny. For example, my boss's husband died last month and for a gift back, I suggested gift cards while my other team members thought of a cute bear for her son with the dads picture on it and another keepsake for my boss. Why is it in my mind, that I couldn't come up with something like automatically? Humm...self awareness is good but I need to work on this stuff.

Body wise...I'm looking better. The class ended last week and I'm officially down 5 pounds, lost 7 inches, my flexibility has tripled, and my cardiovascular has increased greatly. The class was so worth it. My goal is to rejoin the class in the spring. Eating wise and exercise wise, we are still doing the same stuff. I get a combined 40-50 minues on the elliptical, bike, and arc trainer. The arc trainer is AMAZING! It's a true calorie burner. I burn about 11 calories a minute on this thing. At first, it was uncomfortable to go on this thing and now I am up to 20 minutes. About 5 weeks ago, I got my Polar Heart Monitor and I love it. I have to say that the machine readouts on calorie burn is not correct at all. My watch will tell me the exact number of calories and what my heart rate is. I'm usually exercising in about my 75% heart range which is good. I also pay close attention to my heart rate so that I'm not going over the max heart rate. I especially love the weekly summaries because it lets me know if I am on target.

Well, I hope you all have or had a terrific Thanksgiving! Take care all-Kellie

Friday, November 14, 2008

I put on a pair of pants that...

Well, I know the YMCA program is working because I put a pair of LL Bean Jeans that have not touched my thighs in 2 years on and they fit! Yippy! Our last class is on Wednesday so I'm sad to see it end. Chris and I have been working out 4-5 days a week doing 45 minutes of intense cardio (75% max heart rate) and doing 3 days of full body strength. Tuesday I get to do my health assessment post test so I'm looking forward to seeing the results. I feel absolutely terrific, lots of energy, and I can sprint up the 3 flights of stairs at the YMCA (something I was never able to do!).

One thing I find helpful when I work out is not paying attention to all of the TVs around in the gym. I take my little shuffle and listen to some tunes. My range of music is quite odd. Here's some examples: Biggie Smalls-Hypnotize, Butthole Surfers-Pepper, Cake-Going the distance, Chris Cornell-Scream, Coldplay-Speed of Sound, Commordores-Brick House, Death Cab for Cutie-Soul Meets Body, Rick James-Super Freak, House of Pain-Jump Around, MC Hammer-Can't Touch This, Tone Loc, Pink-So What, Poe-Angry Johnny & Hey Pretty, Porno for Pyros-Pets, Ramstein-Angel, Radiohead-All I need, Rupert Holmes-Escape, Shiney Toy Guns-Ricochet & Le Disko, Nine Inch Nails-Hurt. I find this to be a pretty good mix of music. Do any of you have any favorites? I swear when I hear Escape from Rupert Holmes, I want to burst out and sing it, no matter what.

Speaking of music, I've always loved music. I had my first radio at 5. When I was little, I always thought that I should be a music video director...oh, that is so funny. I've cut down on going to concerts in my old age (I'm joking). I have the "Prince Rule". You see, I have this rule that if I really, really, really like a band, I don't see them in fear of being utterly disappointed. You see, I went to see Price about 7 years ago after being a huge fan, only to be so disappointed that I no longer can listen to his songs in the same manner as before. For instance, Nine Inch Nails is playing tomorrow night. I loved that music a ton, but in fear of the Prince rule, I'm opting out of going. It's better to just still love the music instead of not.

Thanks for all the support about the family issues. Nothing has changed, haven't heard from them. That's their choice. The sad thing is that you really don't realize how messed up your extended family is until events like these happen. Please tell me that this is not the norm for people because this totally sucks. I'm refusing to dwell on it like I did my sister but it's frustrating because I'm just feeling like a sitting duck here. The holidays are right around the corner...that is a major bummer. One of my co-workers discussed her relationship with her mom. she noted that she doesn't have the typical mother:daughter relationship and she described the normal relationship as having lunch together, going shopping, etc. I guess I never had this either. I can't recall the last time I went shopping with my mom alone, just to browse, or even get a bite to eat alone. I question if it ever has happened during my adult life. I can recall the last lunch I had with my dad alone was 4 years ago. We just don't do that kind of stuff. Funny thing is that I have found with people that I know, the ones who really really really want to have daughters of their own, are usually messed up in some does this repeat the cycle of dysfunction? God, let me have boys then because I wouldn't want to put my future kidos through this crap.

Chris and I are going to Chicago tomorrow so I'm looking forward to that. It's supposed to be rather chilly so we better bundle up! It will be nice to get out of town. We plan on hitting the art institute and window shopping at some shops. We had the opportunity to take a bus down there for $12 so we couldn't pass that up. Food wise, I'm encouraging him to make some healthy choices because initially he was dying for some deep dish pizza. I suggested some sashimi and thai food so it looks like we will be doing that because I want to finish strong on Wednesday. Have a great weekend all! Kellie

Saturday, November 08, 2008

I think there's a storm brewing...

I think there's a storm brewing and I'm not ready for it. This storm is an emotional storm and I just don't want to deal with it. Things are going funky with my parents and my sister. Which totally ticks me off because I'm tired of the family drama. It happened last with my sister which lasted over two years and now it's happening again with me. It all started a little over a month ago when Chris and I went to Mackinac Island. My mom was pressing me to come visit her when we were coming home. For some reason, she thought we were driving near her home, which we were not. I explained how we were not even going to be close but I still felt pressured to attempt to see them and explained how it was 45 minutes out of our way but she wouldn't listen and noted that she would be very upset if we didn't stop. So that Sunday, I was hurt physically front the day before. My foot was strained from all the walking and I was tired. We left the island at 12:30 pm and then I called my dad and noted that we would still try to visit them (even though I was hurt/tired and it would be a fast hi/bye). My leg was hurting and I was upset in general so I talked it over with Chris so we decided not to make the trip over to see them. I called, told them why, etc. So that next weekend was the weekend when we capped the fireplace. Chris's parents volunteered to come up to help us get on the roof and cap it. When I talked to my mom that week, she was like "Oh, YOU'RE always seeing Chris's folks. They are a priority". I explained that they were purely coming up to help us out. I knew stuff was brewing then and we discussed it and thought, why not have them come down with Chris's parents here. We were having turkey on the girl and we could all visit. They declined. So we went up the next weekend. I got an earful about how we should have visited them the Mackinac weekend and how if we really wanted to see them, we could have left the Island earlier, how they never see us, and Chris's parents is the priority. I noted to them, it was not good to see them that weekend because we were not going by their house but was 45 miles out of the way, I was injured, etc. Chris's parents will come to help out with the house and visit us but that is their choice. I noted to them that they could have come down to visit but they noted that they felt like they were imposing. So after a few of my tears (because of hearing what I don't do is painful) and continuing to press on with my point I thought we came to a consensus. Chris felt that I held my ground with her but her felt that she did not feel the satisfaction of winning so I would probably get more crap in the future, he was right. Then comes my sister issue, my nephew's birthday is on Sunday. We will not be home on Sunday because Chris's dad is having a get together and it is custom to stay the whole weekend when it's a parents birthday because they are the priority. Well, it's my sisters son's birthday (nephew) and we wouldn't be around so I called her to see if we could get together so I could drop off some gifts and see them since we were not going to be around on his birthday. Left a message, no calls, nothing (it's two weeks later so I sent the gifts in the mail). I told my mom this. She noted "Well, Carrie isn't going to move the birthday" "I wasn't asking her to, I just wanted to drop the gifts off" I replied "Well, I guess Chris's parents are the priority?" she asked "Yes, it is his dads birthday and he is the priority because it's his dad. You wouldn't want me to chose Chris's nephew/niece over your birthday, would you?" I asked. So there was a dig from her. Then of course the next time we chatted, mom was nice finally, no digs. Then the next call, I called them on election night and noted that I was going to call them back but I fell asleep then called Wednesday to apologize then nothing. No calls, nothing. I know I am in for it now. Not only with my parents but again Carrie. I'm tired of this family crap. The last time this happened I basically cried for a year about Carrie. It was never resolved but I moved on. Now it's happening all over again, hell no I'm not going to put myself through that again. It was awful and I will never have that relationship with my sister. I've accepted it and now with my parents because they are feeling slighted over Chris's parents? It makes me feel emotionally tired and sad. Nothing is ever good enough on my parent.

I feel like we make about 85% of the effort when it comes to my family. I do 95% of the phone calls because I hear, "We never know when you are home" from my mom. I noted that "it's nice to see the attempt". They have only been to my home a few times since moving here because it's too far. My parents will come into town or near where I live and not stop. When we go up, it is expected to stay the full weekend but they don't stay here, etc. It feels like how much am I expected to give, give, give. Sometimes I feel that's all I do in my life is give but when it comes to myself, am I because I'm the giver and that is my role. I remember in the past, it was always me to run to them. Going back to college, they never came up because it was "too far and we're working" so I used the Greyhound a few times, in grad school I always went to them, when I was dating Sluggy, I ran to them, now I still run to them but it's healthier now. The common thing I hear "it's too far". Yup...this is going to suck because I know what is coming and heck, I don't deserve this one. Argh...need hug...and not ruminate on it. I keep on telling myself I'm doing the best that I can. I guess that's all I can do.