Tuesday, March 15, 2016

Tuesday Ten: Spring Forward!

1. We were part of the freak warm up in the Northeast last week.  On Wednesday, Windsor Locks, CT hit 81 degrees!  That's a record of course.  Where I work it hit 71 and where I live it hit 62. The warmer weather stuck around until Friday night which was just amazing. I was so happy to open some windows and scoot winter germs out.  Plus I decided to take down all the winter decorations over the weekend.

2. I keep feeling quite astonished at how early we are getting spring this year.  It's fun to see my tulips and daffodils before April!  We haven't even raked anything yet.  I'll take the green sprouts, brown leaves floating around and all.

3. Unfortunately, it seems I didn't scoot the germs out fast enough.  I have been surrounded at work by sick people, then two weeks ago Mr. Helen started not feeling well and I was sanitizing everything in my house as well.  All to no avail as I started feeling the burning sensation in the back of my throat along with a slight headache Thursday afternoon.  I know I will feel better in 7-10 days but seriously, I really did not want to get sick. Plus this meant I only ran a slow 10K on Saturday as my get up and go was busy fighting germs.

4.  The main reason I didn't want to be sick, this past weekend in particular, is that my sister came to CT to celebrate my birthday.  We went out for a fantastic brunch, then to my favorite winery for Barrels and Brushes. A seasoned artist shows how to paint a particular picture.  They provide all the paints, canvas, etc. We sat in the barrel room at the winery with a glass of wine and painted!  Oh my goodness, this was so much fun even though I do not have an artistic bone in my body.

Plus we got to have some time with our beloved Jacob.  Long time readers will be astonished to hear that he's turning 13 in September!  Such a little man.  Gracie, of course, had a fit that she couldn't come but was reminded she got her alone time last month.

5.  On Thursday morning (before the throat burn), when I got up it was 58.  I skipped my run and did step aerobics, which I can't do in the winter garage - too cold and I'm too bound up by clothing. There I was in capris and a short sleeved shirt stepping away.  But let me tell you, as well as the running has been going, woooo buddy am I out of step shape - definitely used different leg muscles and they told me so.

6. My MCL is still hurty.  Fortunately it's just on side-to-side movements and/or if I have my leg flexed in a certain position for a long time.  Sometimes I wake up from the pain and then I'm sleepy and under the covers trying to reposition my leg so it will stop.  Doing this the other night, I gave myself a charlie horse in my calf. It was so stupid it was comical.  Anyway, annoying.  And I have the feeling this is going to be like the hamstring pull a couple years ago where it dragged on for almost a year.  Boo!

7.  Powered by Aleve Cold and Sinus D on Saturday, I did something I haven't done in a very long time - went out shopping and I was gone for nearly 4 hours.  I bought that new spring flag, some fun cocktail napkins (which we use on the patio all summer no matter what kind of drink), some shirts and things to wear to work, and a new outfit to wear to the brunch and painting on Sunday. Best part of all, I didn't spend a cent as it was all powered by gift cards,  Woot!

Brunch outfit: I had the shoes already and decided on these knit wide-leg pants and lace top with bell sleeves.  Is it wrong to say how comfortable this outfit is and how much I love it? May I also say I have great respect for clothing photographers.  This isn't the best shot but it was the best I could get lol!

8. After declaring we are having a staycation only this year, I found a really, really inexpensive hotel in Hyannis, on Cape Cod.  We love the cape but haven't been back there since our disastrous visit in 2010 when it rained every day and we left two days early.  Hopefully that won't happen but if it does we have until 3 days before check-in to back out.  Plus we won't go for a full week so some of our time off will still be staycation time. I figured why not reserve the room even if we decide later not to go.

9. I can't believe I haven't shared this Chicken Fajita recipe with you guys.  They are oven roasted and from the first time I made them, I told Mr. Helen I'll never make fajitas another way.  The things I do differently than the recipe is that I use fajita seasoning in place of the taco and I double the veggies.  They are quick and easy and can be scaled to suit your portion needs.  You can even use this as a basis for a nice rice bowl, if you prefer that over a tortilla wrap. Photo is the actual batch I made last week.

10. I'm on the losing trail again. Mr. Helen and I agreed that I had to lose all the weight I'd gained plus at least 1 lb. in order for me to get another $5.  And I did!  He said I almost doubled what I'd gained. Now he's decided that he wants to keep track and see if it's a cyclical thing being caused by hormones even though I'm quite menopausal.  I actually think it's funny how he's really getting into the statistics. In any case, I no longer wish to weigh the 135 lbs. of my younger years and every time I've tried to lose weight and couldn't get back there, I was never satisfied thereby leading to self-sabotage, mental anxiety, and more weight gain.  No matter where my weight ends up, this is truly what I'm aiming for: a Sanity Setpoint.


  1. Wow....you have been a busy gal!!!! So upbeat and positive though! AND YOu lost the weight you gained! Congrats!!!!

    I love the lacey top with the bell sleeves!!!

  2. Wow! In spite of being sick, that is a LOT of action. You are powered by spring weather, that's for sure.

    Congrats on your weight loss, and I do like the Sanity Setpoint poster.

  3. Go Helen! Rock your $5 challenge!

    Gift card shopping is always so much fun. I tend to buy frivolous stuff with them that makes me smile.

    This early spring has been absolutely soul lifting. I keep expecting the hammer to come down with a big spring snowstorm though LOL!

  4. So happy you are experiencing an early spring - it feels like we're living in the same timeframe, for a change!

    The wine/painting party looks fun! I am like you - not really an artist, but just getting to paint and come out of it with something YOU made is pretty neat. Sweet birthday treat with your sister, for sure. Cute outfit, too - love how fresh and springy it looks!

    Dang, Jacob is getting so big! We've been blogging for a long time - kids are growing up (although you and I both haven't aged a bit!).

  5. Such a happy post!

    Since I started reading your blog, I can't remember Spring ever came so early. So happy for you, we didn't even hit those temps yet.

    And such a fun day with your sister, love your new outfit.

  6. What? Jacob is 13 - that's so crazy! But then again, when I started my blog Hannah was 16 and now she's 24, so I guess everyone else ages too! :D

    Love the idea of baked fajitas - I'll have to give that one a try. I never thought I'd say this but I have missed vegetables! Looking forward to going home today and cook up some healthy food :D

    And fingers crossed on the Cape vacation - I remember how horrible the weather was that time :(

  7. Go Helen Go!!! Holy smokes, Jacob is 13????? I remember in the early blog days seeing a VERY young boy. WOW... Have a great weekend Helen.