Movie Reviews

Movies I Saw During 2020

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We lost the ability to do a lot of activities in 2020, one of which was a favorite of mine – going to the movie theater to see the latest blockbuster. I was only able to see three movies in an actual theater, for the rest I had to resort to streaming services which was ultimately fine because I got to watch the movies I missed while they were released. It was also nice to just curl up on the couch with my dog and not worry about people talking or being on their phones in the middle of a film. Although I will be extremely happy once it’s really safe to back to the theater and enjoy a large bucket of popcorn.

Out of the movies I was able to consume in the last year I was honestly surprised that Harley Quinn: Birds of Prey was my favorite. I was so reluctant to watch it because I was a bit disappointed that the Joker wasn’t going to be featured but it was far better than expected. I even purchased to soundtrack. Margot Robbie does such a great job capturing Harley’s erratic yet bubbly personality and the heartbreak that she goes through that could cause any woman to go crazy. The film is a bit unique too because of the sheer amount of girl power surrounding it, and the teaming up of heroes, villains, and vigilantes. Ultimately I’m glad I gave this movie a chance.

I don’t really think I watched anything this year and truly disliked it. I was a bit underwhelmed by A Silent Voice after being pressured into watching it because of how sad it’s supposed to be. The movie is definitely highly successful for it’s beautiful animation and rawness for dealing with mental health but I didn’t have as much of a visceral reaction as others who told me to watch it. I didn’t cry at all but I definitely felt the sadness and hardship from the two main characters and I’d still recommend it to others. 

As I said earlier, I’ll be very happy to start going back to the movie theaters once it’s entirely safe to do so, but the absence of that experience won’t stop me from enjoying movies. I’m patiently waiting for several to come out this year and I’m sure I’ll find some movies from years past to get into. Hope everyone out there has a better year than the one we just went through! 

Full List of Movies Watched in 2020 *animes are listed if I watched them subbed or dubbed*
  • Jumanji: The Next Level (2019; Jake Kasdan)
  • Bad Boys For Life (2020; Bilall Fallah; Adil El Arbi)
  • A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood (2019; Marielle Heller)
  • Harley Quinn: Birds of Prey (2020; Cathy Yan)
  • Booksmart (2019; Olivia Wilde)
  • Frozen II (2019; Jennifer Lee; Chris Buck)
  • Yesterday (2019; Danny Boyle)
  • Ready or Not (2019; Matt Bettinelli-Olpin; Tyler Gillett)
  • Jojo Rabbit (2019; Taika Waititi)
  • Crawl (2019; Alexandre Aja)
  • The Best of Enemies (2019; Robin Bissell)
  • Onward (2020; Dan Scanlon)
  • Zombieland: Double Tap (2019; Ruben Fleischer)
  • Queen & Slim (2019; Melina Matsoukas)
  • 13th (2016; Ava DuVernay)
  • The Hate U Give (2018; George Tillman Jr.)
  • Just Mercy (2019; Destin Daniel Cretton)
  • A Silent Voice (2017; Naoko Yamada; subbed)
  • My Hero Academia: Two Heroes (2018; Kenji Nagasaki; subbed)
  • My Hero Academia: Heroes Rising (2019; Kenji Nagasaki; subbed)
  • It Chapter 2 (2019; Andrés Muschietti)
  • Abominable (2019; Jill Culton)
TV Show Reviews

Shows I Watched During 2020

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With 2020 being the year of quarantine, I definitely got the most out of my streaming services. From Netflix to Hulu to Crunchyroll and Funimation, no service was left untouched. Early in the year, my best friend got me back into watching anime which I haven’t done in years. I was hooked again and binged show after show like nobody’s business. And for those out there that believe anime is for children, I encourage you to watch any of the shows on my list to change your mind. I did watch a handful of “regular” shows as well, including the series finale of my favorite crime show Criminal Minds – and yes I did cry. 

If I had to pick a favorite show for 2020, I have to pick Haikyu! due to the fact that I watched the whole show twice and have already started on a third re-watch with my fiancé. When my best friend told me to watch this show I was so hesitant. It’s centered around a boys high school volleyball team and I am not really into sports. I watched the first two episodes and couldn’t feel myself getting into it but with a little push I started it up again a couple months later and was hooked. The story and the way the characters are introduced and developed really kept me glued to the screen and I became a huge fan of the main team, so much so that I bought the team jacket. I started to really root for these animated boys! I can’t wait for season 5 to be released, hopefully, this year. 

As for the “regular” shows, I’d say I enjoyed The Haunting of Bly Manor the most. The twists and turns of the story mirrored it’s predecessor The Haunting of Hill House but without as much terror. It was extremely interesting to see how the story progressed and it was shocking to see the hauntings played into the real world for the characters. I’ve been left a bit dumbfounded after both Haunting series.

Now of course not all of the shows I watched kept my interest. Netflix’s The Witcher and HBO’s Gunpowder were underwhelming to say the least. The Witcher didn’t really hold my attention until the last three episodes or so which is the only reason I may watch season 2 when it’s released. Unfortunately, not even Kit Harrington could keep my interest during Gunpowder. I found myself extremely bored while watching it and I’m glad it was just a mini-series.  

I’m interested to see what shows come out in 2021 seeing as many production companies are not filming while the pandemic continues. I have a very long anime watch list to get through though, and there’s always new shows and seasons coming out since Japan was able to keep COVID rates low. I hope that everyone out there stays safe as the world continues to change around us and these times are still uncertain. Here’s to a new year. 

Full List of Shows Watched in 2020 *animes are listed if I watched them subbed or dubbed*
  • The Witcher (Season 1)
  • Gunpowder (Mini-series)
  • Criminal Minds (Season 15)
  • Schitt’s Creek (Season 1-6)
  • Brooklyn Nine-Nine (Season 1-7)
  • Locke & Key (Season 1)
  • Ozark (Season 1-3)
  • Dear White People (Season 1-3)
  • My Hero Academia (Season 1-4; dubbed)
  • Haikyu! (Season 1-4; subbed and dubbed)
  • Your Lie in April (Season 1; subbed)
  • Food Wars! (Season 1-5; subbed and dubbed)
  • The Promised Neverland (Season 1; subbed)
  • Tsuredure Children (Season 1; subbed)
  • Demon Slayer (Season 1; subbed)
  • Given (Season 1; subbed)
  • Fire Force (Season 1-2; subbed and dubbed)
  • Dead to Me (Season 2)
  • Free! (Season 1-3; subbed)
  • Banana Fish (Season 1; subbed)
  • Kimi ni Todoke (Season 1-2; subbed)
  • Devil’s Line (Season 1; subbed)
  • Erased (Season 1; dubbed)
  • Seraph of the End (Season 1; subbed)
  • Violet Evergarden (Season 1; dubbed)
  • The Haunting of Bly Manor (Season 1)
  • Fruits Basket (Season 1-2; dubbed)
Book Reviews

Books I Read in 2020

My Post

As we all know, 2020 was a roller coaster of a year and definitely not one we want to repeat. In the last year I lost my job after only 7 months of employment, ultimately due to my position not being of necessity. I stayed unemployed until recently and I had to move states to even get a nibble of anything. I moved from Texas back home to Minnesota in early November because my mental health was in the gutter. I’ve felt a huge sense of loneliness in the last couple of years even though I was living with my fiancé. I realized how much I disliked Houston and missed the Twin Cities. I needed a break from everything around me and a change in my life so I decided to move home and so far it’s been the best choice I could have made. 

2020 also brought I large change in my interests. My best friend got me back into watching anime – something I haven’t heavily done since high school – and I sort of hyperfixated on watching as many shows as possible. Streaming services became a huge part of my life and my interest in reading declined. That’s not to say I won’t ever read again; I have two books just waiting to be cracked open and I’m really going to force myself back into reading during 2021. However, before my shift in entertainment interests changed I did read a few interesting novels. 

Out of the 5 novels I read this year, my favorite had to be Imaginary Friend by Stephen Chboksy. It was creepy, suspenseful, and entirely unexpected. It’s the absolutely terrifying tale of Christopher and his quest to save his town from the devil. Christopher disappears into the Mission Street Woods for six days after moving to town, much like David Olson who vanished into the same woods 50 years ago but was never seen again. Christopher is instructed to build a tree house by Christmas day by the “nice man” that Christopher meets in the woods, and that tree house becomes the portal between the real world and the imaginary world. Every time Christopher returns from the imaginary world, he becomes more knowledgeable to the people around him, but it also makes him sick and believes he is being hunted by “the hissing lady.” The towns people start to feel the same sickness, minus the hissing lady, but with an added violent streak. By Christmas the town is completely against each other. The end of the novel reveals that the tree house actually serves as a way for the imaginary world, which is Hell, to come into the real world. The nice man is the devil. The hissing lady, who was seen as evil, is actually Eve and in the end, with Christopher’s help and strength, is able to deliver Eve back to Heaven and be forgiven by God. 

Imaginary Friends was extremely different from Chbosky’s other novel, The Perks of Being a Wallflower, which is one of my favorite books of all time. It was thoroughly enjoyable though and kept me awake most nights. The other books I read this year were all very different from each other and mostly enjoyable. I wasn’t a huge fan of When We Were Vikings but I think it was ultimately due to the writing style. It’s written in the first person point of view from a main character who suffers from FAS (fetal alcohol syndrome). I commend the author for writing in that way but for me it was difficult to comprehend at times. 

I’m hoping that 2021 won’t be as much of a hell as 2020 and that I can put an even amount of time into my interests. I also have to make sure to keep focusing on myself and my mental health but I believe I’ve already accomplished the hard part by accepting I needed to get out of the living situation I was in. I also hope that everyone out there prospers in the new year and may it be better than the hell we just endured. 

 

Full 2020 Book List

  • The Tattooist of Auschwitz – Heather Morris
  • Truth Be Told – Kathleen Barber
  • Where the Crawdads Sing – Delia Owens
  • Imaginary Friend – Stephen Chbosky
  • When We Were Vikings – Andrew David MacDonald

Book Reviews

Books I Read In 2018/2019

When I went to write about the books I had read in 2018, I just couldn’t. I kept putting it off week after week and eventually it was half way through 2019. Depression can hit you hard sometimes. And then there was an engagement (genuinely excited about that!) and life just went on. But, better late than never.

I decided to combine 2018 and 2019 because I wasn’t going to put out the 2018 list halfway through the next year and I honestly didn’t end up reading a lot through 2019 due to a lot of personal things. It seemed the best idea to just put them all together; the books of 2018 still deserved to be recognized and 2019 was a short stack of novels. Enough though about the reason for this combo, here are the books I’ve read in the last two years.

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I branched out a bit in the novels I read in the last couple of years. Still stuck to the fiction realm and heavily into the suspense, but I threw in some “self help,” historical fiction, and one absolutely bizarre science fiction piece that was honestly my favorite of the 16 books. The Anomaly by Michael Rutger was the one book I couldn’t put down.

The AnomalyA group of unlikely adults work together on a YouTube channel that seeks to find the “anomalies” of history, places that haven’t been truly identified in modern day. For this search they’re off to find a cavern in the Grand Canyon previously “found” by a man named Kincaid who discovered the cavern over 100 years ago. However this time, they are being sponsored by a foundation to possibly turn their channel into a TV program. A member of the foundation accompanies them on their journey, along with a journalist. To the group’s surprise, they actually find Kincaid’s Cavern and seek inside the cave to find if it has what Kincaid wrote about. What they find leads to an almost Cabin in the Woods type inner-workings where an unknown force is trying to recreate former demon like creatures to wipe out the world and start anew.

Once the team had discovered the cave and began their adventure into it’s nooks and crannies, I almost thought it was going to turn into something along the lines of The Hills Have Eyes, but no. There were no mutated men trying to eat the team. Instead, strange creatures conjured out out of a mystical pool deep inside the cavern and it starts to take out the team. Could. Not. Stop. Reading.

Our Kind of CrueltyNow, on the other spectrum of extremely enticing is the “can’t get into it.” That book for me was Our Kind of Cruelty by Araminta Hall. I tried so hard to finish this book but I could only get about halfway through, and even that took time. I’m not the type of person to read multiple books at the same time so I missed out on racking up more titles to include in this yearly list. I started Our Kind of Cruelty in 2018 and gave up finishing it in 2019. I can’t even remember how many months it took me to decide to just put it back on the bookshelf and move on. It was a lot of repetitive scenes that weren’t leading anywhere. Stalker ex boyfriend thinks he can win his way back into said ex’s heart by playing a game they played while together. Not my thing.

The rest of the novels I’ve read in the last couple of years all held my attention. Bobby Hall’s debut of Supermarket was another up all night reader, similar to Cuckoo’s Nest in ways. The Whisper Man by Alex North made me ultra aware to keep my doors and windows locked. I learned a lot about a YouTube celebrity I watched constantly several years ago; Lisa Schwartz’s Thirty Life Crisis made me think a lot about my own anxiety issues. And I discovered a truly exciting new trilogy by S.A. Chakraborty. Her City of Brass and Kingdom of Copper are so greatly detailed that you feel completely immersed in the world she’s created – the final novel comes out early 2020 and I can’t wait to see how the story ends.

I’ve already started collecting books for the new year and am truly excited to see what stories are going to take me away. In the new year I’m also hoping to focus on my writing more, and as I’ve been told you have to be a reader to be a writer. I also have a wedding to save and plan for, a new job to enjoy, and a life to just live. I’m hoping that 2020 is really “my year” which I know is how everyone feels but the way the last 6 months of 2019 went, I need it to be, and it seems to be shaping up that way with the new job.

Of course, I hope everyone has a great new year and a great new decade! Here’s to greatness and success.

 

 

 

 

***Many of these novels I found on The Book of The Month, a monthly subscription box for readers***

Rants · Uncategorized

Where To Go From Here

It happened. At twenty six years old, I was fired for the first time. I’m not going to go into detail as to why it happened, because to be honest I’m still processing it. To be even more honest, I’m processing a lot. It was bizarre how everything came about because I was “fired” but given an extra week to work so they could start training the new person to take my place. Truly though, I’d been wanting to find a new job for a while. I wasn’t happy where I was anymore. Going to work felt like a chore, but I still did my job. Being fired was unexpected but has become my push to find a new job that appreciates me.

I took that weekend to have my pity party and be upset that I was facing unemployment and be terrified that I was not going to be bringing in a pay check for an unknown amount of time – which is still a constant thought right now.

Monday came around and I felt a bit better (thank you to my fiance and my mom for boosting me up) but that fear was still in the back of my mind; what was I going to do with no job? I walked into work and the awkwardness flooded the room because of course everyone knew. I decided to go about my day, and my week, like I’d done for the last year and just did my job. Of course that’s not to say that every chance I could take was spent pumping out Indeed applications. A couple of times I didn’t really know what position I was applying for but at that point it felt like I needed to focus on quantity over quality. By the end of the week I had applied to 100 plus jobs, had a video interview that went nowhere, and only heard from a recruiter for a place I didn’t apply to, but I set up an interview anyway.

I finished my final week at work with the relief of not having to go back (other than to return my scrubs) but trepidation about the weeks to come. I was going into the new week with only one interview set up and an inbox full of “Thank you for your application” messages. Absolute frustration. Also very disheartening. Am I really not good enough or qualified enough for these jobs? Luckily Sam and I got away for the weekend and my mind got a bit of a break from the negative feelings.

This new week came too quickly but I put on my big girl pants and got to it. I went to the interview for the job I didn’t want, and found out that I for sure did not want it. Door to door sales, no thank you! I went home and got back to more job applications, pondered if my resume was good enough, and questioned why I didn’t do more in college to ready myself for what I actually wanted to do with my life.

And now here I am, finishing my first full week of unemployment. Hundreds of applications and resumes sent, two interviews under my belt, and a lot of soul searching done. I came to the conclusion that I do not want to be a veterinary receptionist for the rest of my life. As much as I love working in an environment that helps animals, I’d be stuck in the same role forever. I want somewhere with upward movement, a place where I could grow. My writing is also something I need to start focusing on, which is partially why I wrote this other than needing to get my feelings out in the way that I know.

This is also my way of asking others how they handled being unemployed. I want to know if there are others in my shoes who are looking for a career change and aren’t sure how to get there. Or maybe you made that change, how? What are your suggestions?

Until I find what fits, I’m glad to know that I have a wonderful support system that will not let me fail. Of course I still have the dread of no income but I can take that as it comes. And I believe that most mornings are going to begin with the thought of where to go from here but here’s to not knowing what’s next!

Book Reviews · Uncategorized

Books I Read in 2017

Happy New Year to everyone, here’s to hoping that 2018 will be a better year than the one we all just survived. One of my resolutions for this year is to write more because I haven’t been writing really at all; you can see there were no posts from me in 2017. It wasn’t that I didn’t lose my love of writing but I felt as though I needed to read more. Reading has always been an escape from reality, at least a little bit, so I read as much as I could this past year and I want to share what I escaped into. The majority of the books I read came from The Book of the Month Club, which I joined toward the end of 2016. Absolutely recommend joining if you love books and reading, they have something for everyone each month. There were only about three novels I picked out on my own from just wandering around Barnes and Nobel or my interest in the author previously. Without further ado, the books I read in 2017:

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Of the novels I read in 2017 I would say that two are tied for favorite, Since We Feel by Dennis Lehane and The Child by Fiona Barton. Both novels kept me on edge and wanting more. Lehane’s novel definitely took a turn I was not anticipating and I began to see why it was considered a thriller. Barton’s mystery on who the Building Site Baby was made my head spin with all sorts of possibilities. I’d recommend both of these books in a minute.

Now of course you can’t always get a winner in the books you pick. I found White Fur to be my least favorite novel of the year. Although well written, I couldn’t connect to the characters or the plot of this novel. The female protagonist seemed whiny and reckless and her love interest was lackluster. It seemed like a weird 1980’s Romeo and Juliet but with a high class college student and a low class junkie.

Each novel I read this year served it’s purpose of helping to escape some of the reality going in the world. Now as I go into this first day of the new year I’m hoping that this years selection of novels helps to do the same, but hopefully the world around us starts to shift in a better direction. However it goes, here’s to a new year. Keep on reading!

 

Health · Uncategorized

C25K: Week 3

This week has been incredibly exhausting but also rewarding in a couple of ways. I started my job with the humane society and only had one day off. With my commute being an hour or even longer some days, the motivation to workout has been draining. I’m up by 7 and home around 6:30; I’m not a morning person so the early wake up isn’t my favorite. I made sure I kept to my routine though. I took the break days correctly so my body didn’t falter. Through the exhaustion I found some great reward. I’m working for an organization that strives to unite animals with forever homes and I’m working in an area that tries its hardest to make sure the animals aren’t sick and prevent sickness from an early age. I get to be around dogs and cats all day so I’d say I’m pretty damn happy. Plus this week with my C25K journey I accomplished something I haven’t been able to do in a long time or probably ever.

Week 3, Day 1: Brisk five minute warm up walk, then do two repetitions of the following: Jog for 90 seconds, walk for 90 seconds. Jog for 3 minutes, walk for 3 minutes.

I jogged for 3 minutes! Twice! I honestly don’t know if I’ve ever done that and if I have it was several years ago in my high school gym class. It definitely took my lungs into overdrive to accomplish this workout and sweat was coming out my eyeballs. I was extremely proud of myself for doing the full workout and not giving up even though my legs wanted to. I’m pretty sure I was swearing every few seconds when the second 3 minute jog session came around but it was just Sam and I in the gym so I really didn’t care. I already know that next week involves a five minute jog so I’m feeling the anticipation.

Week 3, Day 2: Same day 1 workout.

I did it again. I pushed through three minutes of jogging, twice. I sweat. I swore. I felt exhausted afterwards but I did it. That’s been the motto for these last three weeks and probably for the next five; I did it. I’m accomplishing these goals and these feats that I’ve never done in my life. I’m pushing myself to be someone better and get into a healthier lifestyle before it’s too late and it becomes even harder than it already is. My first step is this, these workouts. I know my diet still needs to chance and it will once finances are in better shape and buying groceries isn’t so daunting. Sam and I are focused on becoming better for ourselves and each other. He started working out far before me so I’m glad to have him by my side to push me along. But he knows as well as I do that chili dogs, chips and salsa, and BBQ wings aren’t going to fit into this life for long. It really is unfortunate that healthy foods are more expensive than processed crap. There needs to be a switch.

Week 3, Day 3: Same day 1 and 2 routine.

I really had to push myself to get up and finish this week off. I got home from work and took a nap and contemplated finishing the week the following day but I knew that going too long without the exercise would kill me. I got up and went to the gym and finished the week off strong. Luckily I was the only one in the room because the swearing was not in my head nor whispered this time around. I’m still not quite looking forward to this coming week with the five minutes of jogging but it doesn’t seem as daunting knowing it’s just a couple minutes more than what I’ve been doing.

Bring it on week 4!

Health · Uncategorized

C25K: Week 2

Why do holidays have to be food related? It doesn’t matter what holiday it is, we eat a lot. Memorial Day weekend, a time to honor fallen soldiers has turned into BBQ weekend. I’ll admit I’m one of those who participates more in the act of eating than the act of remembrance but I’m pretty sure I’m not alone. I spent the weekend with Sam and his family eating, petting cows, and eating some more. The BBQ night was Sunday instead of Monday however because Sam and I had to come back to Houston for Sam to go to work the next day. It was definitely not a good week as far as food consumption which honestly motivated me to push this week with my C25K journey. Here’s how this week went:

Week 2, Day 1: Brisk 5 minute warm-up walk. Then alternate 90 seconds of jogging and two minutes of walking for a total of 20 minutes. 5 minute cool down.

image1 (2)It honestly felt really good to get up on that treadmill after three days of sitting around eating. The first 90 second jog didn’t even faze me and I was surprised. It felt great to run! But for the rest of the workout my body was screaming at me. It realized this wasn’t something we usually do but I pushed and pushed to get through each set of jogging. I didn’t take any extra long walking breaks, I jogged when I was supposed to. It felt good to sweat and breath heavily because I knew it would mean progress in the long run (pun slightly intended). I finished the workout, showered, and then the cold started.

Week 2, Day 2: Same day 1 workout.

Unfortunately I didn’t workout for about three days. I felt really under the weather with a nasty sore throat and an achy body. It was mostly multiple days of orange juice, soup, cold medication, and an extended cut Harry Potter marathon. When I finally did go to do my second day boy did it hurt! My calves were crying for help but I pushed. I pushed passed the pain and the lack of breath. A cool shower and the couch were definitely welcomed by my body afterwards.

Week 2, Day 3: Same day 1 & 2 workout.

image1 (3)Due to the fact I took three days off for what I believed to be a cold I had to do two days in a row to finish off the week. It ended up being the fact that I have allergies in Texas to explain for the sore throat and eventual stuffy nose. I ended the second week sore and breathing heavy but it still felt good, regardless of allergies. Hopefully going into week three I’ll be a little more cleared up and ready to push to the next level.

Along with being the end of the first quarter of C25K I was accepted by the Houston Humane Society for the position I interviewed for last week. I’ll be working in their wellness center as a clinic receptionist and I cannot wait to start working again! Great news after a long process of countless job applications. Here’s to the next step to life in Texas.

Health · Uncategorized

C25K: Week 1

For the last five years or so I’ve steadily packed on the pounds. The freshman 15 turned into the sophomore 20, and the junior/senior 30. All while in college I had access to a free gym and utilized it only a handful of times. One summer when I was home I signed up for a gym membership and, again, only used it for a couple of weeks. My family and I moved into an apartment with a gym, it was a 1 time use. Another apartment, another gym, and nothing. We moved into a house and my “workouts” were turtle slow walks with the dogs up the block and back home.

Week 1In the past few months I’ve started to notice stretch marks on my stomach and thighs. I hate looking at myself in the mirror. So, I’ve finally decided to really do something about it.

I learned about the C25K workout about a year ago and just a few days ago I saw there was an app for it on my phone. I downloaded it and am going to stick with it. On the break days, I’m planning on doing a different workout just to keep moving. I want to document each week not only for myself but for others who might be going through a similar situation.

For those who don’t know what the C25K is, here’s a brief description. It stands for Couch to 5K and is designed for those who haven’t made physical activity an everyday thing. Each week ups the amount of run/walk time until the participant is capable to run a 5K marathon. The app I downloaded is an 8 week, 3 times per week program which progressively increases the running time versus walking time.

Here’s how week 1 went for me.

image4Week 1, Day 1: Brisk 5 minute warm-up walk. Then alternate 60 seconds of jogging and 90 seconds of walking for 20 minutes. 5 minute cool down.

Well, I got on the treadmill, turned on the music and started the workout. The warm-up was no problem. Then the running started. I’m not a runner at all but I pushed through each 60 second set of jogging turmoil. My heart was racing and I was sweating out my eyeballs. But it felt good at the end. I felt like I accomplished something, even if it might be a small feat to others. My legs were shaking by the time I stepped off the treadmill and walking up three flights of stairs to my apartment was like climbing a steep hill. I did it. That was the goal.

Week 1, Day 2: Same Day 1 routine.

I did a 15 minute bike work out followed by arms between day 1 and 2 and even that kicked my ass. It made me realize even more that I’m completely out of shape. I went into day two with a positive mind set though, until there were people in the gym. My self-esteem is already fairly low when it comes to my weight so having people around to see me sweating and awkwardly running didn’t help but I reminded myself that their opinion doesn’t matter. I’m doing this for myself and to be healthier for myself, and they’re doing the same thing in their lives. I ran and walked and had sweat dripping everywhere, and in the end I didn’t care. My legs ached but after it all I got to sit on the couch with a great satisfaction and an excitement to keep going.

Week 1, Day 3: Same Day 1 & 2 routine.

As someone who has lived in the northern part of the U.S. practically my entire life, living in Texas has been a huge change when it comes to weather. Between day 2 and 3 I could have sat outside and just sweat all my fat off that way. Sam keeps telling me it’s just going to get hotter and I’m not prepared. I’m glad the gym is air-conditioned. My work-out for the in between day was a basic yoga routine. I absolutely love yoga and once my financial situation is better I want to join a yoga studio. Until then, I have this. I officially finished my first week with C25K. Week 1 finishI sweat, I was active, and I feel so satisfied. This also marks my first job interview I’ve had since moving to Texas and I feel pretty good about it. So day 3 went well and week 1 is complete. I’ll do another work out to end the actual week and take a couple days off in Sam’s hometown for Memorial Day weekend.

Bring it on week 2!

Rants · Travel · Uncategorized

The Journey South

Well, it’s official – I live in Texas. It’s been just over a week since my boyfriend and I arrived and now we’ve officially been in our apartment for a week. It’s our first apartment together, and my first apartment ever. All of my bedroom furniture came with along with a few other items like a chair and bookcases. Once we’re able to there will be a dining room set purchased and a new couch. But for what we have right now it’s comfortable and cozy and, most importantly, it’s ours.

Sam and I drove from Minneapolis to Missouri on our first day. We went out of the way because Sam’s best friend lives in Missouri and he and his wife just had a baby so we wanted to stop by and see them, plus it gave us a free stay for the night. We drove through Iowa which was probably the least exciting part of the whole drive. Even though I slept through most of the state, the part I was awake for was not entirely exciting. Plus the rain didn’t help the fact that I was incredibly sad about leaving home.

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But we made it into Missouri without any problems, well except for the truck that almost ran us off t13072754_10208226140266882_5226333321149443201_ohe road. We arrived at Sam’s friends house around 3:00 in the afternoon and talked and laughed and held the baby. Although our stay was brief it felt great that Sam was able to catch up with old friends and that I was able to become a part of their little family as well. We got a great night sleep and set out the next morning to finish our journey. It was the longest part of the trek but with Pandora radio on our side we knew we could make it. While driving through the rest of Missouri I sort of wished we’d been able to stay longer. The winding roads we drove on and the magnificent farm land had me looking out the window the entire time. We saw billboards for caves as well and that sounded really interesting. But we had to keep going. Texas was about 13.5 hours away, and we weren’t stopping overnight again.

Eventually we made it into Oklahoma and we were lucky enough that we missed all of the bad weather that was happening in and around the state. It was sunny the entire time! But, Oklahoma was sort of like Iowa, flat and uneventful but since the rain didn’t hit us it was bearable. I’d rather watch sunny farm fields than dreary ones.

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Missouri and Oklahoma took up most of that last travel day but once we made it into Texas, it still felt like forever before we made it to Sam’s parents house. It didn’t help that we hit the Dallas rush hour and rain, but around 7:30 that night we were finally at our resting spot. We spent the night at Sam’s and the next morning loaded up a couch and television his family gave us and set off for Houston to get the keys to our humble abode. That was the only furniture we had for a couple of days. The moving company wasn’t able to bring our stuff until last Monday but boy did it feel good to finally sleep in my own bed.

So now we are going to make Houston home for the next few years while Sam goes to law school. Once I find a job and gain some more financial stability, I really hope I can start doing all of the traveling I want to do. My bank account laughed at me the other day when I was looking at airfare for Peru (I really want to go to Machu Picchu). In the meantime I’ll stick with exploring my new city and the surrounding areas. It also sounds like I’ll get to go to Louisiana in July for Sam’s birthday, someplace I’ve never been.

Here’s to a new adventure and a new stage in my life!