Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Copy that!

Which would be my sense of humor
I have told (and been told) that imitation is the sincerest form of flattery.  All my girls have had times in their life when someone was "copying" off of them.  I would instantly bring out this remedial saying, which we all know brings no comfort at the time of imitation.

Yet, as I look back (on all things copied and copied) I have to believe that this saying is true.  I have to believe that things I have picked up from other people have helped shape the me I am.  We are all so many pieces before we equal a "whole".  That is not to say that every habit or trait I have picked up has been the best for me.  But in total, it is who I am.

One of the worst habits I picked up was smoking.  I discovered this vice late in life (so to speak) as I was already well into my twenties.  I can still remember my dad's final days as he lost the battle to lung cancer (brought on by 45 years of heavy smoking).   A smoke break was needed after every visit.  It has now been 20 years this November since I finally smoked for the last time.  There were many false starts that lasted a year or more at a time but I wasn't ready to let that habit go until then.

I can also be guilty of picking up mannerisms and speech habits of others if I am with them for extended periods of time.  This is done subconsciously and might even lend the appearance of me making fun of someone.  I constantly have to "check myself" to ensure I am not going down that road (of copying or making fun).  It's a slippery slope.

And to that I would add,  I notice when people copy off of me.  The older I get the more I tend to believe it is flattering rather than offensive.  Sure, there could be some humor instilled in the imitation and I am okay with that.  I have been using humor all my life (again, sometimes not as appropriately as I should.....another "habit").

After years of being in the trucking business, my husband often answers the affirmative by saying "10-4".  Over the years I have added the particular phrase to my vocabulary, along with "copy that".  It's a language we all understand.  I didn't notice it as much in the past but now I have a host of people that work with me that respond "10-4" to my requests.  It makes me smile every time.

There is an entire "numbers" language that at times I feel compelled to learn, but don't want to be so intentional.  So for now, I will leave it at a "big 10-4" (also used at times to emphasize) and move on down the road.

Until next time,

your pal,


Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Miles to go before I sleep

Will clear 100 miles today.
October has always been a busy month for me and mine.  Just about everyone I know was born in October (or so it seems when I buy birthday cards).  We have Halloween to look forward to and the promise of fall is in the air.  For clarity - in Texas that is all we have gotten....the promise.

This month at work we have kicked off a wellness and safety campaign that I have fully embraced.  And those who know me, understand I can take a bulldog approach to anything I have deemed worthy.

So together our group is walking the "million mile month".  What does that mean to me?  And those who have the (mis)fortune of being my friends/family?  It means 3+ miles of fast walking and minimal talking during our lunch hour.  If eating is a necessity - multi-task and get it done on working hours.

Obviously, as I discussed last week, trails have become a way of life for Terry and I.  Plus don't forget the "couples" 1.5-2 mile walk every evening.

My game is full....on.  Whereas I used to be content with 10,000 steps and around 3 miles daily, my minimum now is 5 miles and since I decided on 5, I have felt the need to go 6.  Such a numbers game.

Taking it one step further is our "couples" eating habits.  We are focused on portion control, mucho veggies and sadly, no alcohol for the month of October.  I did have a friend point out to me today that this last step was probably still necessary based on "cruise" reports.  Sigh.

The other day, a lady at work very seriously said to me "When you come back from your walks, your face is all red and I just don't think that is healthy.  You will probably start losing weight" to which I responded "Say it will be so".  She ended with the comment (followed by a laugh) "your husband will have to shake out the bed sheets to find you!"  That may be my new favorite saying.

So - if you are adverse to any of what I mentioned above, it's probably best we don't see each other in October.  I can (and will) turn any meeting into a "walk and talk".  I have been known to get up during staff meetings to "go down the hall".  Translation - my Karibit just notified me I needed xx amount of steps to meet my 250 steps per hour goal.  The clock is always ticking.

Just so you know, the outlook for November could be grim.

Until next time,

Your pal,


Wednesday, October 12, 2016

Happy trails!

Terry and I have taken our relationship to the next level.  Considering we have been married almost 20 years, one might say we have eased into it.  Yes, we have added communal exercise to the mix. We did have one false start a couple of years ago, when we were both in the same boot camp.  Once I returned to work, I had to let go of the early morning workouts.  Now, however, we are hitting the trails on Saturday and Sunday, exploring Texas and logging in the miles.

This is a match made in heaven for me.  Everyone already knows about my compulsive obsession with Fitbit (I may have mentioned before - I call mine Karibit) and counting.  This takes it to the next level.  No longer will I have to be content by circling the neighborhood for 45 minutes to reach three I can explore the great outdoors, (with my partner in crime) and the time flies by.

Did I mention I felt the need to upgrade my existing Karibit to a Charge 2?  This little beauty tells me everything I need to know from a fitness (and counting) perspective.  Out with the old and in with the new is what I say!

Friend Jessica turned me on to the ALLTRAILS app which shows me any trail near me (93 when I look from home) that are ripe for exploring.  Jessica and her family are no stranger to the trails.  They have been hitting them hard for quite some time.  The trails are ranked as hard, moderate (also can be difficult) and easy.  I can now attest that "hard" does indeed mean hard.  I made the executive decision (after our first go at the hard trail) that we can only survive one of those per weekend.

Deep in the wilderness

We also look the part of official hikers now.  With appropriate footwear and water bottles, Terry is also wearing the backpack with all essentials.  Specifically, bug spray, neosporin, kleenex, extra water, hairbrush and Terry's epi pen (let's hope we never have to use that).

Another bonus - my Fitbit stats on the leader board have risen significantly.  Not that this is a contest with my fellow fitbit friends (specifically no contest with my mate as he is not tracking using Fitbit) however, isn't life a contest? And just as an aside, I have been in first place for a number of days now.

Finally, my compulsion with the counting seems to be rubbing off on mi espouso.  Just Saturday when his Apple watch did not track the full 4 miles that I received credit for, as I was cooling down in the car, he could be seen walking up and down the sidewalk, dead set on hitting 4 miles before we left the trail.

Again, a match made in heaven.

Until next time -

your pal,

Wednesday, October 5, 2016

Can I help you?

If my eyes are still open, I am still helping
I love to help (with the exception of moving, packing or unpacking households, baiting fishing hooks....this list is not all inclusive).  However, given any other situation.... I enjoy participating, interacting and cheering.

As hard as it is to believe, there are some instances where my help might not always be appreciated.  That is the bad news.  The good news is I am starting to recognize "some" of those instances.

One of the toughest assignments I have been working on giving up is being "co-pilot".  As an expert driver, I know how hard it is to hear the gasps, grabbing hold of the seat or door, sometimes accompanied by helpful hints about traffic conditions.  And still...

I have latched on to a new remedy.  Now I bring my knitting to the car with me on longer drives. I am so involved with my latest project, I forget to look up.  Because when I look up, I am not enjoying the scenery,  I am scanning the horizon for potential roadblocks (literally and figuratively).  It is (was) my job.  The benefits of this is marital happiness.  Seems like a small price to pay.

Another work in progress is my listening skills.  I have always been an empathetic listener, but sometimes I go into the "fix it" mode and share how the particular situation could be solved.  It never ceases to amaze me (that given my versatile life experiences)  I don't always have the right answers to EVERYTHING. I am Not.  Always. Helpful.

The good news is I am a continual work in progress.  While you may only know about my bi-lingual pursuit of talents and the musical interest that has been revived, I READ EVERYTHING.  Some of it's just junk, but much of it can be good advice for managing daily life.  If you know me, you also know it has never been good enough (for me) to just get by.  I need to excel,  And while I may never be excellent in all I attempt, I will never stop trying.

Another blessing and a curse.  It is hard to feel satisfied with myself when I am "striving".  Striving to speak Spanish, play the piano better, be a good wife, mother, daughter, sister, friend.....the list goes on and on (and is not listed in any type of priority)!

So here is what I acknowledge for now.  I will never be perfect.  This will be true in everything I do. This is not an excuse to quit trying but more a recognition that sometimes keeping on trying is good enough.  More than good enough!

Until next time,

tu amigo,

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