Another November weekend

It was not a very exciting weekend, but I did get a lot done.

***I did a lot of shopping/returning. Online shopping has been my preferred method of updating my wardrobe lately, but it’s not always the most reliable method. More often than not the items I order don’t fit quite right. Not a big deal, but then I have to handle returning what I don’t want to keep. One of the good things about Los Angeles is that there’s a brick and mortar establishment of just about every store within a reasonable driving distance. This means that I can usually return items in person rather than through the mail This weekend I took clothes back to J.Crew (an itchy sweater), Old Navy (an ill-fitting pair of workout pants), and Lucy (another pair of workout pants I didn’t like). Unfortunately those three stores are located at three different malls spread out all over Orange County. Maybe I should have just mailed everything back instead! On the flip side of the shopping experience, I bought a jacket (love the new North Face store at South Coast Plaza), some chocolates (for Thanksgiving), jeans (cheap ones at Old Navy), and a Christmas ornament (Hallmark, of course).

***I replenished my food reserves. In the middle of last week I ran out of homemade meals in my fridge and freezer and started eating less healthy options. It was bad news. So this weekend I put together a bunch of meals consisting of meat and vegetables so that I wouldn’t be tempted by fast food, junk food, or leftover Halloween candy. I already had some ground beef, broccoli, and carrots left over, so I just needed a few things to augment those items. Yesterday I made some Crockpot teriyaki chicken, and then today I made two batches of green beans (one roasted, one sautéed). Now I have enough prepared meals to get me through the week, at least. After that I’ll be spending the weekend at Disneyland because the Avengers Half Marathon is early on Sunday morning. After the experience of the Disneyland Half Marathon in August, I decided to stay at one of the nearby hotels so that I won’t have to get up and drive to Anaheim at 3 AM on race day. It will be nice to be able to sleep a little longer and then just walk to the start line that morning. The only difficulty will be making sure I get the necessary nutrition. I’ll need to find restaurants where I can get some protein, vegetables, and probably some potatoes the night before the half marathon. I’ll work on that.

***I watched a lot of TV. This is probably true of just about every weekend for me, but I figured it was worth mentioning this time. The best thing I got to see was Florida beating Vanderbilt yesterday. It hasn’t exactly been a banner year for the Gators so far. But last weekend unranked Florida upset #11 Georgia, which shocked just about everyone, especially after three losses already this season (including homecoming). Personally I didn’t expect the streak to continue, but I was a very happy Gator fan when it did! We’ll see what happens next weekend against South Carolina, but yesterday’s win was a lot of fun to watch. After the game was over I re-watched last weekend’s episode of Doctor Who while doing laundry and washing dishes. It was the first half of the season finale. These seasons are never long enough for me! Rather than staying up to watch the second half of the season finale last night, I saved it on my DVR until this afternoon when I was done with my errands. The show had quite a sad ending, actually. I’m not sure I liked it. But Doctor Who is still my favorite show these days and I’m sorry the season is over. At least I have the Christmas episode to look forward to next month.

So that was my weekend. Thrilling, huh?

November 1st

***On Saturday I made it to Disneyland for the first time in over a month. The crowds around Halloween are crazy so I stayed away for the entirety of October. But I was determined to make it there on Saturday, rain or shine, so that I could enjoy the Halloween decorations before they were taken down. Not only did I get a great picture of the huge Mickey jack-o-lantern on Main Street (see the above photo), but I also got to ride Space Mountain: Ghost Galaxy one more time this year. It was super creepy and I loved it. In addition, I finally made it on to the updated Finding Nemo Submarine Adventure ride that re-opened in September. It’s not that much different than before, but the colors are much more vibrant.

***After a few more rides and a lot of walking, I almost gave into my cravings and got a chocolate milkshake. But then I realized it was lunchtime so I got a much healthier lunch instead. The rotisserie chicken, mashed potatoes, and roasted vegetables from Flo’s V8 Café in California Adventure is actually really delicious! There are definitely more diet-friendly meals available at the parks than I ever imagined.

***When I got home from Disneyland I immediately turned on the Florida vs. Georgia football game. I had missed the first hour, but since the Gators were losing at the beginning of the 2nd quarter I decided not to go back and watch the first fifteen minutes of play. The good news is that Florida started putting points on the board as soon as I tuned in! It was awesome. They ended up upsetting Georgia 38-20, which was pretty amazing considering the awful season they’ve had so far. This was exactly what the Gator fans needed to bolster their spirits for the remainder of this year’s football schedule.

***I spent the rest of the day doing chores and watching TV. I initially tried to go to the Laundromat to wash a few loads of laundry at the same time, but the place was packed so I just went right back home. Fortunately I was able to wash three loads of towels and sheets in the single washer/dryer combo at my apartment. In between juggling loads of laundry I washed a whole bunch of dishes and watched last week’s Big Bang Theory, Elementary, Gracepoint, and Doctor Who. Geez, that’s way too much TV! I really need to cut back on the number of shows I record every week. I’ll work on that. Besides, how am I going to enjoy the holidays while sitting on my couch?

Gator football is back!

I may have had to watch the Florida vs. Toledo game on my iPad because it was on ESPN3 and not a regular network, but I didn’t mind. Gator football is back! Can you tell I’m excited? The game started around 9 AM here on the West Coast so I got up a little early to make sure I was ready for the first Florida football game of the season. The first order of business (after donning a Gator t-shirt, of course) was breakfast – especially since I’m trying to revamp my eating habits (as described in Thursday’s post). Unfortunately I’ve had some stomach problems the last few days so I wasn’t sure what food options were going to be compatible with my digestive system today. I played it a little safe with a blueberry pomegranate smoothie from McDonald’s rather than my usual Egg McMuffin. I’ve been pretty lazy for the last couple of days due to whatever weirdness is going on in my belly, but I really need to be productive this weekend since I’m supposed to leave for Florida next Sunday. Yikes! Luckily it’s a long weekend and my stomach seems to be a bit better today. So how did I make the most of my time during the Gator game? I baked cookies, of course! Double dark chocolate chip cookies and funfetti sugar cookie bars. Both batches turned out pretty well so I’ll be posting those recipes soon. Baking might not have been the best use of my time, but it was certainly enjoyable while watching the Florida win. After the game I ran a few errands and then came home and started packing for Florida. It’s extremely daunting to pack for a trip that will more than likely last about six weeks. I can only take so much stuff with me so I have to be a bit selective. There are some items that I will be better off buying when I get there rather than hauling them across the country, like mouthwash and body lotion. And although I’m going to be wearing jeans, t-shirts, and sneakers to work most days, I really need to pack some other items for use under different circumstances. All of this is making my head spin. Hopefully I can fill my suitcase with the things I need without it going over the airline weight limit! I may have to bring a larger carry on bag than usual. I’ll think about that some more tomorrow. I ended my day with a jog (5 miles jogging out of a 7.5 mile route) which was really pleasant after the sun went down. It’s been hot in Los Angeles this past week, but luckily the temperature drops about 20 degrees in the evening. That’s the only thing that makes the heat wave bearable! Sometimes I miss air conditioning. Now it’s time for bed so I can get up tomorrow and make the most of the second day of my long weekend. Good night!

Super Bowl Sunday

The Super Bowl party at Mike and Lisa’s today was fantastic. Unfortunately I got a headache sometime during the fourth quarter so I’m not feeling 100% right now. Plus, I left my phone at their house and didn’t realize it until I was all the way home (a 30 minute drive) after the game. And since I’m on call for work this weekend and really need my phone, I spent an extra hour driving back to pick it up and coming home again. That was stupid. Anyway, the chili I made turned out well, but Mike’s homemade pizza was the real star of the show. Delicious. I’d like to write more, but it’s getting late. And since I am going to try and get up early to go to work in the morning I’m not going to stay up any later making this a decent webpage post. A short paragraph will have to do for today. Goodnight!