Wednesday, January 15, 2014


So I've been at this weight-loss/fitness/healthy-lifestyle thing for about a month now, and I'm seeing progress.  I've done stuff like this in the past (yes I completed the first month and a half of Insanity, lost 20 pounds and four inches, and then gained it all right back again) and it's never really stuck with me.

But for some reason, this time it's different.

I don't know if it's because I'm feeling it, physically and mentally, a full-on life changing experience (yuck! SO not at that level yet), or if it's simply because my husband is noticing it.  Don't get me wrong, my husband and I have a very healthy, loving, caring relationship, but we've had major discussions about the future of our bodies; what will happen when I'm old and saggy and can't do stuff?  He's active and fit and energetic and loves being outdoors or working out.  I am the polar opposite of that.  I've always said, "I'll never BE like you.  I don't enjoy those things. You didn't marry a skinny minnie.  I'll never be a size 2..." you name it.  And that still rings true today, but I can see myself liking it for his benefit; I can see myself becoming healthier for the benefit of us.  Yes, I want to get in shape and be sexy with a tight body for my man, but I also want this for the betterment of our relationship.

It's nice to say, "I married you for what's inside, not outside," but honestly - that's not 100% accurate.  Everyone judges based on outside appearance to some degree.  I WANT to be attracted to my partner, as I'm sure he does of me.  So letting myself go isn't healthy, for me personally or for the attraction aspect of being with another person.  Don't get me wrong, I'm still 100% the lazy, rather-be-inside-reading, exercise-HATING, food-junkie, big-girl-at-heart woman he married, and a part of me will always be.  Like I said, I'll never be a size 2.  But that doesn't mean I can't take care of myself, keep myself looking good, keep myself healthy so I can live a long life with him.

And this progress... I've lost 9 pounds in one month.  I've been doing this C25K program, actually going to the gym with him from time-to-time, and hating every step of the way.  But I'm loving how it's making me more energized, helping me lose weight and build muscle, and allowing me to get on his level... someday.  We do this together, yet one more thing we can relate to one another on.  Sure, my 20 minute jog is simply a warm-up for him, but he encourages and supports and pushes me, and afterwards, slaps me on the butt, gives me a big kiss and says, "Good job babe."  That's why I truly do it.

And that's why I'll keep it up.  Eventually I think I'll be doing it for me just as much as for him, but for now, I'm content with knowing that he glows when he sees me reach my goals.  It makes him proud and let's be honest, slightly aroused ;)

I'll be doing monthly weigh-ins and maintaining a lower-calorie intake until I reach my goal (hopefully by September) of 150 lbs.  Let's see how this goes!

Until next time...

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

me + him

sometimes my own thoughts condemn me.
it's quite a depressing way of life, but it's true.
if you know anything about me, you know i don't believe in depression, so that's not my problem.
i feel people use depression as an excuse to not do things in their own lives; an excuse to lay around all mopey and sad and useless because they are too scared/lazy/uncaring to face the world and all its harsh realities and difficulties.
you may say i've never been in such a dark place that i'd truly know what depression feels like therefore who am i to know if it's real or if it could have a hold on me.
you don't know me.
you don't know the things i've seen/done/felt/experienced.
i don't give a damn if you dislike me because of my belief in the nonexistence of depression.

moving on.

i struggle, everyday.
with myself, my life, my relationships, the unknown.
i'm sure my struggles don't measure up to other people's real life hardships, like not having a home or food or family or someone to love, but in this moment, i'm gonna be selfish and focus on me for a change.
none of my struggles are really significant in the grand scheme of things, this i know, but they affect me everyday in differing degrees of strength.
most of these struggles are internal, like i said condemning thoughts.
i'm too fat.
i'm too judgmental.
i'm too naggy.
i'm too lazy.
i lack ambition that i was once so praised for having.
(should i really have a job? is he just saying he's okay with it because he doesn't want to seem demanding?)
i slack off on the important wifey duties.

before i continue, know this is not about you.
this is not about me seeking pity.
i don't do that.
this is my outlet. my way of organizing my own thoughts and being held accountable for them.
this is how i sort out my struggles and come to the realization that i'm better off than i think.

moving on.

i'm too needy.
i expect too much from my husband.
i don't expect enough from myself.
i expect too much from myself.
death scares me.
emotions make me emotional.
i lack an inner drive to tackle difficult things.
this debt seems never ending.
(where will we be in six months?)
i let people take advantage of me.

this list could last for days, so let's get to the point.

the point is that i'm tired of never measuring up to the ideas in my head.
i'm tired of having expectations and hopes and dreams and either never achieving them or them failing right before me.
i'm tired of other people voicing their distaste in my way of living my own life.
i have every right to not be okay with me, but fuck you.
if you have a problem with the way i do things, buy a ticket and stand in the line for the show, "samantha doesn't give a shit what you think."
i am my own worst enemy, my first and biggest critic, the one who holds me up to the highest standard and knows first and foremost that things aren't going as i'd planned.

so STOP.

i'm making the most of my life in this current moment.
i'm figuring out how to be happy and successful, and everything isn't always clicking, but i'll get there.
i don't need you condemning me too.
i know that eventually things i want to happen will... when i start putting in more of an effort.
i've set clear goals and i will achieve them, i just lack patience (add that to the list).

but when i get like this, i think of him.
he is my salvation.
yes, jesus christ is an amazing entity, and god is my lord and savior, but that's not who i'm talking about.
i'm talking about the man whom i love with every fiber of my being, the person who (besides my mom) is my biggest fan, supporter, the first person up to champion me in everything i do.
the best thing i've done in my life so far was to marry him.
he helps remind me that i'm not a failure.
he helps light my way when i'm blinded by self-inflicted darkness.
he realizes any struggle that comes upon me i can face head-on, even when i don't want to.

me + him = strength.
                  a clear mind.

when he reassures me, it lasts for a few fleeting moments, but knowing that he takes the time to try is what sticks with me.
he knows how this crazy mind works and he still tries, every moment of every day, to calm it.
he knows that i'm the worst at judging myself yet he loves me more than anyone can.
he knows that i have hopes and dreams and he always encourages me to follow them.

me + him = why my condemning mind doesn't get the best of me.

so these moments of self-doubt and momentary hate are simply fleeting.
i have accomplished some things, and i let my doubt get the better of me, blinding me from that fact.
i have amazing qualities about me too.
i have the strength to get myself out of my rut, but having him there to help me do so is the greatest gift this life has granted me.
i'm capable of surviving alone, but i don't want to.
he is proof that i can do something right
his encouragement is why someday i know i will accomplish all those goals.

Sunday, January 5, 2014

Dr. Who Knitting Pattern (free) KNEE SOCKS!!!!

I'm all about creating your own stuff, but since I'm new at this, I decided to re-purpose certain aspects of other people's designs and put it all together... a knitting mash-up of sorts, to create my own pair of knee-high socks.  As set out in my previous post, I wanted to make a gift for my brother's girlfriend, as well as a Christmas gift for a friend.  I ended up deciding on a pair of knee socks for both of them, but I wanted it to cater to each girl's particular "design" aesthetic.  So I found this super cute DROPS Socks design and decided to give it a go for the pseudo sis-in-law.

Finished product... yes shitty pic, I'm gonna get
better at documenting my stuff, I promise.

For take two, I went with - Dr. Who!  I borrowed the main sizing and heel work from the same pattern above, but combined it with the cute little Tardis chart from this Tardis Beanie, both of which I found on Ravelry.  I hope this pattern I sorta created is easy enough to understand and that you enjoy it!!  Here goes nothing,,,

Sock Sizing:
[5/6½ shoe - 7½/9 shoe - 9½/10½ shoe]

US Size 1 Needles (working in the round for leg/working back and forth for heel)
[200 - 250 - 250] grams Fingering Weight Yarn

Cast-on [104 - 117 - 130] stitches
Join for working in the round. Mark beginning of round.

- Work in [K2, P2] stitch for approximately 2 inches.
If you want it to be even more funky/interesting/colorful,
feel free to change colors (maybe incorporating your TARDIS
blue here).  Work knit stitches in one color, and purl stitches in
another.  Switch to primary color (NOT TARDIS blue) for the next section.

- Work stockinette stitch (all knit stitches) for approximately 1 inch.

- Work this chart, repeating each set of 13 stitches [8 - 9 - 10] times around calf.

* The "white" boxes are your primary yarn 
color/what you've been knitting with the whole time.

* The "grey" boxes are your choice of TARDIS blue.

* You'll start in the upper left corner, working from
left to right, top to bottom, ending 17 rows later in 
the bottom right corner.  Make sure not to pull your
yarn too tightly here or it will bulge around your
calf and/or not fit.

- Knit in stockinette in your primary color until total piece measures 4½ inches

- Begin calf/shin decreases:
       At 4½ inches, spread [8 - 9 - 10] stitch decrease by K2tog evenly around until there are [96 - 108 - 120] stitches left on needle
       At 6¼ inches, spread [8 - 9 - 10] stitch decrease by K2tog evenly around until there are [88 - 99 - 110] stitches left on needle
       At 8¼ inches, spread [8 - 9 - 10] stitch decrease by K2tog evenly around until there are [80 - 90 - 100] stitches left on needle
       At 10¼ inches, spread [8 - 9 - 10] stitch decrease by K2tog evenly around until there are [72 - 81 - 90] stitches left on needle

- Continue in stockinette until overall piece measures [17¾ - 18½ - 19¼] inches.

-Begin heel decreases:
       Slip [39 - 39 - 48] stitches onto a stitch holder = upper foot; will come back to these
       Keep remaining [33 - 42 - 42] stitches on needle for heel (working back and forth)
       Work stockinette (knit RS, purl WS) for heel stitches.  You're going to do a quick heel decrease on first RS row: spread [12 - 15 - 15] stitch decrease by
       K2tog evenly around until there are [21 - 27 - 27] stitches left on needle.  When heel is [2 - 2¼ - 2⅜] inches, insert a marker and work heel decreases as follows:

Row 1 (RS): work row (knits) until [5 - 7 - 7] stitches remain
K2tog into back of loop, turn piece
Row 2 (WS): work row (purls) until [5 - 7 - 7] stitches remain
P2tog, turn piece
Row 3 (RS): work row until [4 - 6 - 6] stitches remain
K2tog into back of loop, turn piece
Row 4 (WS): work row until [4 - 6 - 6] stitches remain
P2tog, turn piece
Continue decreases like this with 1 less stitch before each decrease until
there are [13 - 15 - 15) stitches on needle

- After heel decreases, pick up [13 - 14 - 16] stitches on each side of heel and slip the [39 - 39 - 48] stitches from holder back onto needle to total [78 - 82 - 95] stitches.  Begin knitting stockinette in the round, at the same time, decrease as follows:

K2tog into back of loop the two last stitches BEFORE the upper foot 
(the [39 - 39 - 48] stitches you saved on the stitch holder)
K2tog first two stitches AFTER the upper foot stitches
Repeat the decrease on every other round a total of [6 - 6 - 9] times
to equal [66 - 70 - 77] stitches

- Continue knitting in stockinette until distance from marker on heel measures approximately [7 - 7½ - 8¾] leaving approximately [1½ - 2 - 2] inches remaining for the toe area.  Maintain knitting in stockinette and decrease across upper foot stitches only by spreading [12 - 12 - 15 ] stitch decrease by K2tog evenly until there are [54 - 58 - 62] stitches left on needle.

- Insert markers on each side of foot with [27 - 29 - 31] on upper and under foot.  Continue in stockinette stitch while decreasing for toes as follows:

BEFORE marker - K2tog
AFTER marker - K2tog into back of loop
Repeat the decrease on every other round a total of [4] times and then
on every round [7 - 8 - 9] times until there are [10] stitches left on needle

- Cut the thread, pull it through remaining stitches, tighten and fasten

And there you have it!!  I hope it makes sense, and if it doesn't please ask and I can try my best to explain differently.  Please bear in mind that I didn't create any of this, just rewrote the patterns I listed above; referring to them may help clarify as well.  In any case, enjoy and share pics of your finished products!!  They'll probably look better than mine seeings how this is like the fourth thing I've ever knitted!!

Until next time...


Wednesday, January 1, 2014

ROME... a little late.

 SO my husband and I joined a couple of our friends for a Roman adventure the first week of December (1-5).  It was LOTS of time spent walking/running (to catch buses and trains), but it was amazing and fun and allowed me to scratch off another "wish list travel place."  Check it out...

My face says it all... seriously though, these long distance trains are AMAZING compared to their shorter distance counterparts!  LOVE the luxury!
A little glimpse into where we stayed for the time we were there... we rented an apartment through "Apartments Apart" on and we were very pleased with it!

Night exploring... went to the Circus Maximus

On the bridge to go to Tiber Island

Explored a lot of the forums throughout the city

Best picture of the trip... a night spent wandering around the Colosseum!
Day vs. Night!
Inside the Colosseum

Inside the Roman Forum and Palatine Hill

Baths of Caracalla

Another night vs. day look, this time at the oldest Church in Rome


 (Ssshhhh... I took pictures inside the Sistine Chapel!)

On the roof of St. Peter's!  I stayed on this level, but the boys went up to the Cupola inside that dome behind us!

 (Right outside of the Pantehon!)

The Trevi Fountain

The Citta del'Acqua underneath the Trevi Fountain!

It was pretty much an amazing trip and I was so glad we got to share it with other people.  Yes my feet were swollen for like a week after we got home, but it didn't really matter in the grand scheme of things!  Can't wait to continue exploring this awesome continent!!!!

Until next time...