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Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Merry Christmas!!!!!!!


























































We had a FANTASTIC Christmas. The kids got the things they wanted so badly - biggest hits - Morgan - Wii, Michael - Laptop, Katie - Laptop, Chris - CASH. :) Mike and Amy also made out like bandits with Santa's pack. :) The kids woke at 8am sharp (we told them they needed to wait until at least 8). They rushed downstairs and ripped through the presents so fast it was a blur. Michael, Chris, and Mike made us omelets for breakfast in their new omelet maker. They were delicious. For several hours, we played on the Wii. I have to admit, I was skeptical. I LOVE IT. It is amazing. We played it for hours. We picked our our "Miis", and we played mainly the sports games. Morgan and I played (if you can call mainly failing playing) Dance, Dance Revolution. We loved it, but we have a long way to go to be good at it. :) Abhijeet and Mark came over for dinner and more Wii play. I think Mark liked the massage chair more than the Wii, but we had fun playing.
























We are heading to Grams and Papa's tomorrow morning bright and early, so I am signing off. Ho, Ho, Ho, Merry Christmas!!!

Christmas Eve






We had a fantastic Christmas Eve. After work, Mike, the kids, Krishan, Abhijeet, and Mark went to see National Treasure 2. It was really good. In fact, I liked it better than the first one. Krishan thought there weren't enough clues to solve in the second one, but I really liked the story better I guess.


After the movie, we went through a Carrollwood neighborhood to see the Christmas luminaries. It was just beginning. They were pretty, but we couldn't figure out why they used brown bags instead of white ones. The white ones would have been spectacular. After the luminaries, we went to Idlewild Baptist Church for Christmas Eve. I haven't been to a Baptist church in a LONG time, and it was somewhat nice to go to a new place. It is ENORMOUS. I had heard it was big, but even the street going to it (a private road I guess) is huge. The santuary has 3 levels. It was very nice. However, it loses some of the personal feeling and I like being able to actually see the minister's face without seeing a jumbotron. It was a really nice service though, and he dedicated it to the miliary, police, and firefighters who are protecting our peace. He spoke about peace through Christ the Prince of Peace. It was a nice message. The kids had a story abou St. Nicholas. It was all about feeling good about giving and not just about receiving. I was glad that they had that message for my kids to hear and remember. :) Several times, the minister seemed finished and then he would put his stuff back down and begin again with what seemed like the same thing but phrased a little differently. That is when I remembered the number one reason why I am a Methodist. In Methodist churches, they know how to start and stop a service on time and still deliver their message. It made me think of my old minister who used to end his sermons with "We will finish here so we can beat the Baptists to the restaurants." I always got a big kick out of that. :) Anyway, I really enjoyed seeing the church, loved the message, glad the kids could see it. Then, we all lit the candles and the huge church was glowing. It was SO beautiful. We were in the balcony, so we could see it all. There was a Soldier's Silent Night poem set to music and then everyone sang Silent Night. It was very, very nice.


We came home and had dinner. The kids FINALLY got to open their one Christmas Eve present. Morgan opened her DS Game Catz. Katie got High School Musical 2 on DVD (the EXENDED version). Michael got Ratatouille, and Chris got Pro Street. We played Apples to Apples and made chocolate chip cookies (3 points EACH - I had 2). It was a really nice day.

Sunday, December 23, 2007

Christmas in Florida

This Florida weather just doesn't really feel like Christmas. As many benefits as there are to living in the warm weather, I would not say Christmas is one of them. It is really hard to get that "Christmas feeling" with 80 degree temps. Not that I am really complaining, but it is just weird. I went shopping yesterday to wrap up my shopping. I was actually very surprised as the stores weren't even bad. I went in Bed, Bath, and Beyond, Dick's Sporting Goods, Toys R Us, Walreens, and Target. Whew! I don't usually like to shop, but this kind of shopping is actually fun to me. I LOVE having the new stores in Wesley Chapel. It is so nice to drive 4.3 miles and be in the parking lot of these stores instead of driving 30 minutes. :)

Today, Mike and the boys made Taco Soup. I debated going to the doctor as I am still struggling with this stupid cough and chest cold. So much for stopping smoking having an effect. I thought it was supposed to be easier to shake these stupid coughs if you didn't smoke? Not that there aren't other benefits to not smoking and I will not ever let myself go back, but I am saddened that it didn't help the cough. :( Mike got the kids a gingerbread house to make. Obviously, I was the only one who remembers doing this last year. After they drove him crazy to eat it, he told them to eat it or he was going to break it. Smart kids. They ate it.

I decided that maybe avoiding exercise wasn't helping the stupid cough, so I asked the kids if they wanted to go ride bikes. We went for about 5 miles in about 38 minutes. On one turn through the neighborhood, this kid was playing with a skaeboard and it went flying in front of Katie's bike. Chris yelled a warning, but it didn't register with me until I saw the skateboard going next to her tire. She did a good job of reacting and turned sharply onto the sidewalk. She almost hit the electrical post and then swerved and almost hit a mailbox. I thought for sure that we were on our way to the ER. Thankfully, she reacted well. Later in the ride, she ran over something plastic and it made a loud noise and it went flying in the air. Of course, I nearly had a heart attack again. I think Katie just administered her version of a stress test.

After the ride, Morgan, Katie, and I went for a walk. We went a little over 2 miles in 50 minutes. They thought that was fast. :) It was fun though, and we enjoyed looking at the Christmas lights as they started to turn on. This one house in our neighborhood always has the best decorations. They have an amazing haunted house at Halloween, and at Christmas they have several blown up things, the grinch, and several others. Of course, they also have a lot of lights. Morgan keeps asking for snow in Nashville. Of course, I checked the weather and it looks like it will be in the 60's during the day most days. I think after all of us leave except for Morgan it MIGHT snow a little. I certainly hope it does. :)

I have to work tomorrow. At Bond, we either get the day after Thanksgiving or Christmas Eve off. We don't get both. We do usually get to leave around 2:00. Mike thinks this is the worst thing in the world and asked what it was like to work at a third world company. Apparently, he has forgotten that I moved to Tampa and took this job for him. Of course, I would much rather have both off, but I did come from the hospital and before that the theater. Both of those jobs require you to work every other holiday at a minimum. So, give me your opinions. Is it that odd to have to work Christmas Eve?

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Feeling Icky

I am still not feeling well. I was going to go to the doctor, but I had to go pick up a package for Mike. I got lost, and it took almost 2 hours. Morgan finished practice early, so I was very late to pick her up. The urgent care was closed. :( Hopefully, I will make it there tomorrow. This is such a busy time of year. I so need some down time!

We did our holiday lunch today at work, and we did the "White Elephant" or whatever name you call it. It is where everyone brings a gift and then draws a number. One by one people pick a present in order. Of course, the catch is that you can steal another present that has already been opened and each present can be stolen 3 times. We had relatively little stealing until the end. When there was ONE present left, we had stealing going on for about 10 minutes. I had a picture frame, and then I had picture frame coasters. Those were stolen, and I ended up with the movie "Sneakers." I have seen it, but it has been a long time. I can't wait to see it again (sorry Diane!)

Sunday, December 16, 2007

Holiday Parties and Ears Pierced



































































The Youth Gold team had its holiday party. They had a fantastic time making earrings and decorating cookies. They did a secret santa gift exchange, and I am the lucky parent of a child with perfume and fragrant body lotion. She decided to try it in my car yesterday, so you now need a gas mask to ride in my car. :) Their gift from the coaches were wildcat pants as shown in the team picture. :) Of course, while we are there, Morgan is the ONLY kid who can't wear the earrings they made because she is the only one without her ears pierced. So, I finally break and decide that she can get them pierced.

Little Alexis also wanted hers pierced, so off we went to the Piercing Pagoda at Citrus Park Mall 10 days before Christmas. :) We had an entourage of Alexis K, Christina, Victoria, Coach Kelly, and Uncle Mark. Of course Denise, Mike, and I were there as the crazy parents. Kelly was our consultant. She was great at comparing the marks on the ears to make sure they were even. She held Alexis' hand, and she was so adorable as little silent tears came down. Morgan was next. I held her hand, but she was very stoic and didn't flinch or cry. I was shocked. I love how they say they are going to do it on 3, but then they really do it on 1 and 2. :) No chance to chicken out or move. :) Morgan is thrilled, and I have to admit she looks adorable with the earrings. I didn't make it to 12, but at least she made it to 9+. :)

Mara and Kraig had a holiday party at their house later in the night. There was a festive crew. Kraig was manning the Margarita machine. It was HOT. I am pretty sure I need one. :) Later in the night, Chris and Andrea (the girls coaches from Cheer Champs) came over. It was so wonderful to see them as the girls really miss them a lot. We tried to gang up on Chris to get him to come to the Wildcats, but I am not sure if we made any progress. :) Andrea is happily coaching in Brandon, so we didn't have any luck with her. The girls showed off their tumbling outside, and it was fun to watch them get so excited to show off their progress. The coaches really have an amazing impact on the kids in ways that are much greater than cheer and tumbling. They help them with goals, confidence, believing you can do it with hard work, positive attitude, and just having fun.

I was having my 2 point drinks of Bacardi and Diet Coke, and I must have had a few more than I thought. :) My purse left in great condtion, so it was immediately better than the last holiday party I attended. :) Thanks Mara and Kraig!!

Friday, December 14, 2007

Mini Gold Party











Tonight, the Mini Gold team had their Christmas party at Pump it up! Here are some pics from there. They decided to collect toys for needy children instead of doing a gift exchange. It was really nice.

I'm BACK

Obviously, I have been a bad blogger. This week was so crazy busy. First, I had client meetings in the office on Monday and Tuesday, and then Wednesday I traveled to Colorado and flew back on Thursday. Today, I have barely survived the day. Whew. On Wednesday, I got up at 3:15am to shower and get ready for the airport. Fun, Fun. I felt like Mike. I made sure to kiss him goodbye at 4am as he does when he is leaving before dawn. :) Of course, I was asked by our out of town client if I could pick them up on the way to the airport, and I said sure. I found out later that my flight actually was an hour later than I thought, so I could have actually slept an extra hour. Oh well. I hadn't prepared for my two demos in Colorado yet, so I did that at the airport and then on the plane until the battery died.

Colorado is COLD. BRRRRRR. There was all this white stuff all over the ground. :) I was so hungry after the first demo that I caved and had Mexican food. :) It was SO good. I didn't do that badly, but I felt guilty enough to do good at dinner. I went to this Italian restaurant by my hotel late that night (I had two rounds of demos so it was late evening by the time I finished. In the bar area of the restaurant, there were 4 guys who were very passionately talking politics. I haven't gotten to talk about politics in a long time. I even got to tell the "democrats raise taxes which means mommy has less money which means that I get less toys" story. :)

Morgan's mini cheer team had their Christmas party today at Pump it Up. What a great concept that place is. They have it down from taking belongings from one room to another to having hand sanitizer ready for each kid as they go to the party room. Impressive. Tomorrow is her Youth Gold team's party. She also has her India project due on Tuesday. Should be a fun weekend!

Today we celebrated Travis' FORTIETH birthday since it is on Sunday. :) Wow. Happy Birthday Travis (you old man). :) To make him feel at home, we all wore sixties attire. :)

Josh ordered me a phone from ebay and it is here and on. Please send me your contact phone numbers here.

Lordy, Lordy, Travis is Forty (well, he is on Sunday)


In honor of Travis turning 40, we had "60's day" at work so that he could feel at home. :) It was fun and worked well since Mark and I were hippies for Halloween. :) He got the wonderful birthday song, and we took him to his choice of Steak and Shake for his lunch (yes, he picked it). Unfortunately, he ended up on the phone with a client and missed most of the lunch. We will have to do it over. :)


Thursday, December 13, 2007

Christmas Tree




We finally got our Christmas tree decorated. :) As usual, we went with the sandollar and burgandy theme. Our tree is a little shorter this year, so we packed some ornaments on.




Saturday, December 8, 2007

WOO HOO 5K
















So, I walked some of it - well, a lot of it. :) My original plan was to run 15 minutes, walk a couple, run 15 minutes, walk a couple, finish. So, I ran the 15 minutes. And I walked a couple. But, my plan fell apart from there. So, I just ran/walked the rest of the time as bes I could. It was fun. I am so glad I did it. I can so feel the running in my legs. We had a great time. Mike was ahead of me at the end, but he waited so we could finish together. That was very sweet of him. Michael, Chris, and Morgan all finished as well. Morgan even got 3rd for the 9 and under girls. She got a Dick's $10 gift certicate and a pedometer/mp3 player. :) Michael and Morgan even did the Kids 600m dash AFTER doing the 5k so that they could get a pair of TB Lightning crocs. Mark was the fastest of the bunch and came in earlier than all of us. :) I am proud that I did it. As we were leaving, a lady told us about one in St. Pete on Jan 19th in St. Pete. So, I guess I will give that one a try next. It is just a little over a month. Maybe I can run that whole one? That would be cool. :) It was amazing to see the first, second, and third place runners. They finished in around 15 minutes. WOW. We preferred 46 minutes. :)

Tuesday, December 4, 2007

Arm, Dinner, Purse Update






















Today, Morgan had a doctor's appointment for her arm. Her arm has healed well, but they want to see her back in 6 weeks to see what is up with the bone piece that is still hanging out and unsure of where it is going to go. She is having some snapping in her elbow that is bothering her some but not a lot. Still very impressed with Shriner's.

Phil has been in town for the past few days, and it is great to have him in the dev lab. We all went to Millie and Tony's restaurant, Nova Steakhouse, for dinner. It was VERY good. I was impressed. We had some mushroom soup as a tease, and then I had the 8oz filet with blue cheese and a potato thing. I saved a bunch of points for dinner, so I was SO hungry. Maybe not the smartest idea for a fancy steak place. However, the decorations were very nice. The waiter was good. The food was excellent. I will definitely return. Great anniversary restaurant or a great place to take a client.

Update on the purse incident: Josh was able to get the camera exchanged, so I had to exchange that one for the original type I had. I am happy to have my camera back. :) The memory card was ok, so it is working well. :) I will post some pics tomorrow. He has also ordered me a replacement phone from ebay. Should be interesting. I do appreciate the effort, time, and money that Josh (and Lauren) have spent. Even though the experience has been extremely frustrating (and disgusting), I am thankful that Josh is trying to make it right. I bought a new purse today. It is weird having a different purse. You have to figure out where to put all of your stuff. I still haven't gotten a wallet. I need to try to find one like the one I had. It was working well for me and keeping my stuff somewhat organized. I had only had it for a few weeks (of course), so I should be able to find an exact match. I haven't heard anything on the insurance on the Bond phone. :(

I did get up this morning and do week 6 #3 of the couch to 5k program. It is 25 minutes straight of jogging! WOO HOO!

Monday, December 3, 2007

The purse incident!
















WARNING - This is disgusting. If you are a wimp or have a weak stomach or are eating, this is probably not the post for you.





Non-disgusting part of the story



So, Saturday, started off kind of hectic. I knew that with the Christmas Party I needed to exercise. But, we needed to leave by 8:30 to go to Orlando for Morgan's cheer competition at Dr. Phillips High School. Mike, Michael, and I got up and went jogging (week 6 #2 of the couch to 5k plan for me). This one was two 10 minute runs with a 3 minute walk in the middle. With the warm up and cool down, it was 35 minutes. I had to rush into the shower, so I asked Mike to get Morgan's hair up in a pony tail. I am in the shower and Morgan comes in with her hair leaning to one side and with two humps. She is near tears so I tell her that I will fix it. I am giggling at this because usually Mike is the one who is good with hair. I am so NOT a good hair person.



We arrive at the cheer competition, and I get Morgan dressed and in make-up. Of course, we got there about 30 minutes early and we still weren't ready at 10:30. Typical. Morgan got changed, but then she decided that her brand new shoes were the wrong size. Since they are $50, you can imagine my joy. Then, she decides that it was just the tongue in the way and they are fine. Whew. Then, I need to fix her hair again. I spray it and spray it and spray it. Now, it is the dreaded make up time. Since I wear very little make up, I am always dreading this part. Morgan immediately starts looking for someone else to do her make up. :) I get it started, but the eye liner is where I am not so good. :) Thankfully Sarah's mom did it for her and did a fantastic job. Then, I was brave and did the lipstick. Maybe by the end of the year I will have the whole thing down. Go Mom!



Her mini team ROCKED. They did so well. Kelly and Jason certainly have done a good job of getting them prepared. They win first place!!!!! I rush her off to get her changed for her next team (thinking I am doing a good job). We are looking for her team and can't find them. Finally, we see them outside. As we walk out, one of her coaches tells us that we weren't supposed to change her and that the coaches would do it. Morgan feels like she is in trouble and starts to cry. Alice and Kelly reassure her that she is not in trouble. I told her that we know now, so she shouldn't be worrying about it. A team they were competing against went first. Whoa....are they really level 3? Every person on the team could do a punch front. It looked really great. They nailed their stunts and tumbling. Uh oh. Morgan's team did well, but they had a few bobbles and a few tumbling errors. Morgan did well. I was proud.



After the competition, I hurried out so I could meet the Raleigh/Boston/Philly crew for the Bond Christmas Party. As soon as I pull out onto I4, it is a parking lot. I start to freak. It is 4:00. Party starts at 7. I have to get dressed and everything and drive there. Uh oh. Cutting it close. About 5:15, I talk to Mark. He says the party starts at 6. UH OH. I am SO not going to make it. I drive faster than I should, and I arrive at the hotel around 5:50. I decide that there is no time to take another shower (thank GOD I took one in the morning). Mike and I rush out to hurry to the Christmas Party. Oh wait. We need liquor. They only serve wine and beer, and that is too many points. So, we go to the liquor store to get some rum. We arrive at the party around 6:45. Not too bad. We order a diet coke in a tall glass. The bartender says, "I thought you two drank last year." I ignore her. She says to Mike, "Didn't you drink last year?" I am wondering what that says about us that the bartender knows that we drink when we only see her once a year. Odd. Mike keeps going to the bathroom to make drinks. I wonder if anyone noticed? :)

After the party, we head for Whisky Park North. This is not my usual type of place to go, but what the hell? We go upstairs, and we see most of the Bond crew. We notice that the Boston/Raleigh/Philly connection is not there. We find out later that they didn't meet the dress code since they changed clothes. Bummer. We do catch up with them once they are back in party attire. Glad I didn't change! We have a great time dancing (everyone formed a circle and people went in and out of the middle). Of course, I wasn't surprised when Mike went into the middle or even when Travis did. I WAS surprised when TONY went in the middle. He never dances. I forgot to mention that Tony had a date set up by Millie. :) Good job Millie. Of course, he almost missed it since Phil had to go buy pants and have them taken in (he said his wife would have killed him if he bought off the rack pants lol).

Ok, now is the gross part. Stop reading if you don't want to know (you really probably don't want to know but I can't resist it. I have to show).

Josh and Lauren were also at Whiskey Park. We were having a grand old time with them until...Josh picked up my purse and PUKED IN IT. Let me repeat that. He picked up my purse and vomitted IN my purse. Not like accidentally puked on it instead of the floor. Oh no! He AIMED for it. So, I am furious. Josh has to leave (which was probably good). We leave thereafter as I am disgusted. We take Travis home, and head to the hotel. I remember being SO thirsty but I really didn't want to wade through the puke to get a diet coke. Mike didn't have any cash, so I was out of luck. I tried to clean off the phones and camera that night, but I kept gagging. I got most of it off, but I finally surrendered and went to bed. Of course, it is very late by now. I wake up at 6:00. I start freaking out because my phone doesn't work. Morgan is spending the night with a friend from the gym, and their phone number is in my phone. UGH. I try and try and try to get the phone to work. No dice. I finally think about changing my phone greeting to leave Mike's cell number. Whew. I start going through my purse. OH MY GOSH...I CANNOT EVEN DESCRIBE HOW NASTY IT IS. I start puking because it is so totally digusting to reach into my purse that has someone else's vomit all over my stuff. Mike is trying to sleep and keeps telling me that he loves me and asking if I am ok. I am in tears many times. Finally, I get everything out that I am going to get. Let me tell you that everything had at least some puke on it, but the half of my purse that had all the electronics was the part that got 90% of it. My wallet even had it inside it - even in the coin area. I wash everything that I can. I try to dry things out with the hair dryer and the air conditioner. Finally, I am as done as I will be. The worst part is that it was in a purse that my mom brought me from Italy. I loved that purse.

Josh has so far worked on the camera and has taken it back to get a new one. Neither of my cell phones work, so he is working on my personal cell phone now. I know he feels awful. I know that one day I will forgive him. I am thankful that he is trying to make it right. I will keep you posted.

Party dress: $100
Hotel room: 20,000 points
Bacardi Rum: $12
Cell Phone: $300
Cell Phone: $200
Camera: $225
Wallet: $25
Italian Purse: Priceless :(

Sunday, December 2, 2007

Wow, 6 months smoke free!!!!!!!!!

WOOO HOOO!!! I made it 6 months without smoking.
Amy - smoke free for Six Months, One Day, 5 Hours and 33 Minutes, while extending my life expectancy 15 Days and 8 Hours, by avoiding the use of 4422 cigs that would have cost me $757.38.

Now, look at those numbers for a minute. SIX months and 4422 cigs!!!! That is a LOT. $757!!! Whoaahh.... I am not sure the 15 days is that impressive. I would think in 6 months it would be more. 15 days is just long enough to be in a coma for a miserable 2 weeks. :) However, it is all still amazing to me. I am so thankful that I was the nurse at Camp Chattooga for a week. I don't know that I ever would have made it without being forced to do it. Amazing.

Friday, November 30, 2007

30 Days of Posting

Whew...This posting every day commitment was a LOT. Even though I like to post most days, I felt the pressure to make sure I actually did it. I did enjoy it though, and I will probably do it again next year.

Work was good today. Michael P arrived in town, and Amanda is also in town. We all went to lunch (I think there were around 18 people there). It was fun to see everyone together. :) I am excited about tomorrow. Morgan's competition and the Christmas Party! What FUN.

Happy 10th Birthday to Tal! Good luck to my Vols tomorrow. I don't know what team will show up tomorrow - the kick Georgia's butt team or the down 24 to 9 to Vanderbilt team. I would LOVE it if they actually beat that stupid LSU team. I really don't like them. I mean I really, really don't like them. GO VOLS!

In the spirit of the event:

Rocky Top, you'll always be
Home sweet home to me
Good ol' Rocky Top
Rocky Top Tennessee

Thursday, November 29, 2007

Dress Rehearsal

Today was a good day. Even though it was wild and stressful, it seemed to be positive. I started the morning with the week 6 #1 jog/walk from couch to 5k. At lunch time, I walked with Niki and Debbie for 30 mins or so. It was fun to get outside, get a little exercise, and spend time with them. We talked a lot about Altantic City and Las Vegas. I made a mental note that I need to go to Atlantic City sometime.

At night, there was a dress rehearsal for Morgan's teams. Something about putting on a uniform gets those girls excited!!! They walk differently, talk differently, and are just hyper! :) Both teams were doing really well, and the Youth Blue and Senior White were also doing well. Morgan's team had another broken arm on Tuesday. I don't know what is up with the arms on her team, but it is crazy. I hope they are getting it out of their system now and that will be all of the injuries for the year.

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Gifts

Today, I have thought a lot about gifts. First, it was such a gift to be able to spend Thanksgiving with my family having fun. It was so nice to be away from any of our homes, away from work, away from everything typical in our lives and to just be together. I truly think I have the best family in the world. Second, the gift I gave myself by stopping smoking is huge. I am coming up on my 6th month of not smoking. I never thought I would ever quit for real. It is truly the hardest thing in the world to stop. It seems crazy to me now, but I never thought I would make it. Third, I have lost 20 pounds. Of course, I gained 30 during my smoking cessation...:) So, I am still in the red by 10 pounds. However, I am actually jogging. Who would have ever thought. Me! Today, I did the week 5 #3 run which is 5 minutes walking, 20 minutes jogging (without walking), and 5 minutes cool down walking. In case you misse that, it was 20 minutes jogging with NO walking!!!!!!! What a gift I gave myself by starting this program. I actually can do it without feeling like I am going to die. Of course, I also keep thinking about actually winning money in Vegas. :) All of these are amazing gifts.

On a different front, I have also been thinking about Christmas. I would love to do something with our family for Christmas and not provide many presents. I think the memories of trips or time together are much greater than a toy or a thing. For example, for some of the presents the kids want, you have to hunt long and hard for these items. There are even comlete websites that are set up to help you find them. How crazy is THAT??

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Longgggggg Day

Today was such a long day. I woke up tired. I fell asleep on the couch at night. Work was stressful and long. All in all it was a good day, and I feel like I got a lot accomplished. However, it was long and I was tired (did I say that yet? :) )



Some of the teams at Lightning City had "Dress Rehearsal" tonight for the competion this weekend. Morgan's teams will go tomorrow night for their rehearsal. It was fun to watch the older girls tumble, twist, and stunt. They are truly awesome to watch. Morgan is up to the layout, and she has done a little twisting. But, she has a long way to go. As long as she is easy on the arm, it wil be fun to watch.

Monday, November 26, 2007

Back in the Saddle Again

First day back at work after traveling is not fun. I was SO tired this morning. I just couldn't bring myself to get up and run. But, I will go tomorrow. I also need to get back to the gym. Morgan and I did pretty well getting moving this morning though, and she was off to school before I realized it. Mike had an early flight. I am SO glad that I didn't have to fly somewhere today.Work was very busy. I think I kind of got caught up by the end of the day. I am finishing what I am not caught up on tonight. Morgan had cheer practice tonight, and it was good to see her tumbling. She has her first competition of the year this Saturday.

More vegas pics

Sunday, November 25, 2007

Flight Home

Thankfully, I slept most of the way back. I was so tired. It was pretty funny watching Mark. He didn't get any sleep at all before the flight. Mike and I were pretty beat. Morgan even slept for most of the first flight. :)

We ended up being 2 hours late coming home. For some reason, my flights in Nashville are always delayed. The Nashville airport has really made some improvements though. We ate at O'Charley's while we waited. It had been a LONG time since I have been there. I had the Southern Fried Chicken Salad. MMMMMMM...I looked it up, and the points were 42. I didn't eat it all, and I used very, very little dressing. I am hoping that brought it down. I did pretty good the rest of the day by just having a few peanuts and dried fruit on the plane. Oh yeah, I did celebrate the Tennessee victory with a few orange and white M&M's. :)

Saturday, November 24, 2007

Holy Football!!!

We started the day eating breakfast at the Caribe Cafe at the Mirage. I had a "beater omelet" again. It was great but the service was very slow. When it was over, we headed to the sports book bar. It is football nirvana. All of the screens to watch the action and then a huge wall with all the odds and scores. They had horseracing stuff too, but we weren't interested in that. It seems to me that during football season they would use that space for football. :)

So, we are watching my beloved Vols play. All is well, and they are up by 14 already. Wonderful. Well, as the game went on, it got closer and closer and closer. The game eventually tied and went to FOUR overtimes before the Vols won!!! In fact, Tennesseee had to block a field goal to keep in it. SOOO close. Poor Morgan was waiting to go to the M&M World and the game took forever. Thankfully, Grams took her to the Secret Garden. Then, we walked to the M&M place. I was surprised how long it was, but Morgan did a great hob. She got so many M&M.

Then, we went to eat at Kokomo's Steak and Seafood Restaurant. It was very good. I had a steak with cajun sauce and spicy shrimp on it. It was very yummy - even though it was expensive. All of the restaurants in Vegas were pretty expensive. I have always heard about the cheap buffets there, so I am not sure if we just went to nicer places or if those aren't around now.

As if my heart hadn't had enough excitement, we then went to the Craps table. Mike was being the Crabby Daddy and missed the first guy. It was an amazing roll, and Papa, Mikeo, and I all did well. Then, Papa gave Mike G lessons on Craps. I think we should start the Papa School of Craps. :) He is a very good teacher. Unfortunately, Mike was getting the table loaded and then they would roll a 7 - every time. Then, we went to a different table. This one wasn't as long as the first guy, but there were 3 people who had pretty good rolls. I missed one of them as I was worried about losing what I had won.

We didn't hit the bed until 4:15am, and we had to meet Grams, Papa, Uncle Mark, and Morgan at 5:45. Ugh - I hate early flights. What a great, fantastic, wonderful trip and birthday!!!!!!!!!!!

Friday, November 23, 2007

Friday in Vegas

We started out the morning by having breakfast with the family. Morgan was invited to go to Zachery's soccer game to play with Hannah, so we went to get a quick breakfast. I was somewhat good by having a bagel with a very small about of butter. Morgan had her chocolate fix by having hot chocolate and pancakes with chocolate chips. Mike had a "One of a Kind" which was one egg, one piece of meat, half an order of hash browns" (I thought it was a cute name).

Morgan left to go to the game, so Grams got everyone organized to go on a casino tour. We went to the Venetian (the only place I had really seen other than New York, New York) where I stayed when I came to Vegas the first time for the Misys User Conference. The Venetian was beautiful, and it is truly amazing to look up at that ceiling. We walked through the shops there, and we found some pretty barrettes for the girls (including some combs for me). :) Mark got an amazing picture of himself on a hunk of a body. I think that would be a great franchise in Tampa.

Then, we walked on to the Wynn hotel. It was fun to walk up and over the bridges. The Wynn was very pretty and had a great waterfall. It is so fun to see how different all of the hotels are. On the walk back, Deb, Mark, Mike, and I went to go get Oxygen at the Oxygen bar. It supposedly makes you feel refreshed and energized. So, we are told it is a 15 minute wait. About 40 minutes later, we finally sit down (Mike was rather angry and was sure that they were taking people before us). The girls there are so hyper that it is a little annoying, but they are having fun. Basically, you hook a nasal cannula in your nose, and breathe in through your nose and out through your mouth. It is supposed to be for 15 minutes, but we were on for 30. While you are connected, they give you a back massage, a neck massage, and a head massage. They also give you some fragrant stuff to rub on your neck and to breathe in (eucalyptus and peppermint). It clears your sinuses and makes your neck all tingly. The massage was great, but there wasn't any space between my back and the massaging girls front. A little too close for me, but I wasn't going to tell her to stop the massage. :) The head massage thing was awesome. They also had a little tens unit that is shaped like a mouse. It felt so good that Mike and I got one. We also did the "power shot" drink that is to give you energy for 6 hours. I am not sure if it was psychological or not, but I did feel better afterwards.

When we are in the room before dinner, Mike gives me a birthday present. While we were shopping, we went to a glass store. It is a beautiful bracelet with glass ornaments and cats! It is so pretty and fun. It also jingles nicely when rolling the craps dice. :)

I played a little craps and roulette in the afternoon, and Morgan came back from the game. Seems like she had a wonderful time. For dinner, we ate at Stacks. The dinner was very, very good, but the menu was very limited and very expensive. I had the "pre show special" which was an appetizer (hot rocks sirloin), a petite fillet, and chocolate cake (not sure how many flex points this is so I am counting it as none - hee hee). I also had a little asparagus, green beans, broccoli, spinach, and a tiny taste of potato). On my dessert plate, they wrote Happy Birthday Amy in chocolate on the plate. It was impressive and tasty. :)

After dinner, we went to see "O" (the Cirque du Soleil show). We had AMAZING seats as we were in the very center in the lowest section seven rows from the floor (103 row G). I don't think you could have gotten a better seat. Thanks PAPA and GRAMS! The show was amazing. The divers were incredible with their twisting flips into a very narrow area of a pool. The acrobats were so flexible that it made me hurt. The music and the costumes were out of this world. Morgan was loving it, but she started to fall asleep at the very end. Poor thing, she was so tired. She did love the show though. She was a pain in the butt walking back to the hotel, and then she apparently did not go to sleep for a while after Grams took her to the room.

When we got back, Mike and I wandered around looking for something to play. The roulette tables didn't seem to be hitting my numbers or to be on a color streak. We tried to get into a craps table, but it was too full (this jerk wouldn't move over to let us in and then this Chinese family had 2 people playing but took up the whole end of the table with spectators). We then stood there cussing because this one guy rolled for over an hour. Ugh. Mike then sees Papa and Mark playing, so we head over there. We hit it just in time and we both did very well. Papa had a smile, and we know that is good. One time during one of the rolls, Mark said "come on 8, Mark needs a new pair of shoes." I cracked up and wondered how many people heard that and thought he was gay. We played craps until around 2, and it was a great day and night.

The best line of the day. Mike was talking about how we all came to Vegas because I quit smoking, and then he said, "I keep trying to think of other things she can quit doing so that we can come back to Vegas!!!"

Thursday, November 22, 2007

Happy Birthday to Me Vegas Style

I think I should spend all of my birthdays in Vegas. What a day. In the early hours of my birthday, I won at craps and was up almost 200 bucks. We started out the day by eating a fantastic breakfast that was somewhat healthy. I had a "Beater Omelet" with mushrooms and feta cheese. After breakfast, I played roulette. It couldn't have been better for betting as it was almost ALL black numbers. So, I played black and my typical 5, 6, 11, 22, 24, 25, 27, 31, 35. I hit 11 and 24 multiple times. Have to love that 35 to 1 odds. :) Happy Birthday to me. '

We ate Thanksgiving at the Cravings buffet in the Mirage. It was fantastic and like no buffet I have ever eaten. They had about 10 or 12 stations of food including Italian, Carving, Barbeque, Raw Bar, Fishmonger, seafood rolls, chinese, sushi, salads, dessert, and some others that I can't remember. The turkey was delicious, and you didn't have to cook or clean up. Mike's brother Bubba and his family happened to be in Vegas from Utah for a soccer tournament. They joined us for Thanksgiving. It was a great time. I am so glad we got to see them. Morgan and Hannah are like "twins with different moms" as Lynda put it. :) Hannah does gymnastics, so they had fun talking about flips and things. They best line was when Morgan asked Hannah if she could do a layout, and Hannah said "A what?" Morgan replied with, "I think you gymnastics people call it a whip." It was hysterical.

That night, Bubba and Lynda took Morgan with them for a while, so Grams got to play some (she has been keeping Morgan). Morgan had a great time with Hannah. We also got to see the Volcano outside of the Mirage. It is amazing to me that they run that every hour. It must cost a fortune. I guess that tells you how much they make off of innocent people coming here to play and win. :)

All in all, I think it was the best birthday ever.

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Vegas Baby!!

We arrived at the airport with 2 hours until the flight as the media was saying it was crazy busy everywhere. We had to park in overflow parking, but the rest of the airport was a breeze. Mike ignored us most of the time on the flight with his noise cancelling headphones. Morgan was pretty good. They had a contest to see who could find the most quarters in their possession that covered the most states that Southwest flew. Morgan and I knew this was our contest (my purse always has a ton of change in it). So, we found 25 different states and 16 of them were covered by Southwest service. Morgan got a big bag of pretzels, and I got a drink coupon. Mike also got two of the trivia questions right and got free drinks. It was a 5 hour flight, but it wasn't too bad. They also sang Happy Birthday at Mike's request (he then missed the singing as he had his headphones on). :)

We arrived at the Mirage, and it is very nice. We had a great Italian dinner at Onda (Veal Saltimbucca has to be a LOT of flex points but it was really good. We got our craps lesson from Larry the Master, but we lost a little money. Then, Mike, Mark, Mike, and I went to grab a drink. Mike and Mark went to bed, but we played some Roulette and Craps. Mike wanted to go to bed, but I talked him into staying. We both ended up ahead. :)

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Day 1 of the new release

Woo Hoo!!! The release is out and it went fairly smoothly. We had a couple of issues, but nothing earth shattering yet. (Knock, Knock on that wood) :) I went running in the morning and did week 5#2, and I didn't eat breakfast as I knew we were having our Thanksgiving lunch at 12. We didn't end up starting until 1, and I was SOOOOO hungry. Anyway, I think I did pretty well. Morgan had double cheer practice last night, so we didn't get home until late. Of course, we hadn't packed (when will I learn from my mother?), so I was up late last night packing. Of course, Morgan couldn't find her ipod, any underwear, or her book she is reading. Finally, I found all three (of course that was after me getting angry and her crying - oh the joys of motherhood). I think I got 3 I hate you's last night. That is by far a new record. I am trying to get used to it as I am sure there will be more as we move into the double digit years.

We also had our birthday celebration today at work. I have gotten several "late thirties" comments. At least I have added to my life in time and quality by stopping smoking and losing weight.

Tomorrow, we are off to VEGAS!!!!!!!!!!!

Monday, November 19, 2007

Release Day!!!

Release Day is finally upon us. There is always an excitement and nervousness that comes with shipping a new release. Tomorrow will tell if we should be more excited or more nervous. :)

I went on a site visit today to a client in Tampa. It was fun to see users interacting with the software. When I arrived, there was a lady checking in on the kiosk. They talked me into getting a flu shot, so I did that. I am always nervous that the shot will give me symptoms. Not what I want 2 days before traveling. However, I certainly don't want the flu. I will never forget the one and only time I know I had the flu. Morgan was around 2, and we both had it. I ended up taking her to the ER at Vanderbilt Children's in the POURING rain when they were doing construction on the hospital. Since it was just the two of us, there wasn't anything I could do other than park the car and walk with her. I was about to collapse as I felt so badly myself, and we walked through the security metal detector. Of course, they had to check my purse, and I am barely able to stand. As soon as we walk to the check-in desk, Morgan pukes ALLLLLL over the lady and the desk. So much for a nice welcome. :) They ended up giving her an IV for fluids and we went home. It took a week to even feel human, and I even remember running into walls trying to go to the bathroom. So, that memory is what made me get the shot today. :)

I had a conference with Morgan's teacher. I think they expect a bit too much out of nine year olds these days. For example, Morgan had a few assignments that hadn't been turned in. Two of them were when she was out for the doctor. I know Morgan asked for them because she mentioned it when I picked her up from school. So, what I am upset about is that I would have never known this if I hadn't asked for a conference. I see test scores come home that are good, so I assume all is good. I asked how I can know that everything is getting turned in, and she said I can email her and ask. I guess that will do for now.

We are having our Thanksgiving meal at the office tomorrow. We are doing a "healthy drive" at the office leading up to a 5k race. The theme is License to 5 Kil...ha ha..Lisa cracks me up. Anyway, we get a raffle ticket if we bring in a healthy recipe and another if we share the recipe. Woo Hoo...two tickets coming my way. :) I made a lighter green bean casserole AND a lighter key lime pie. :) YUM. I only have 19 days until my 1st 5k. Only 2 days until VEGAS!!!!!!!!!

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Project Sunday


Today, Morgan and Alexis had to work on their NASA project since it is due tomorrow. Mike and I went running today (I finished week 4 woo hoo!), and then I took her to Alexis' house. By the time we got there, they only had an hour. So, we rushed to cheer practice. Then, I went to get my haircut while Morgan had her practice. I just made it back to watch them do the routine a few times before we rushed back to Alexis' house. For 3 more hours, they worked on their project. However, it looks amazing. They did a really nice job.
Mike met us at Subway for dinner. I guess I am trying to make up for my -2 flex points because today I have only had 14.5 points. :) I think that means I need popcorn. :)

Saturday, November 17, 2007

Oh My Aching Head

What time is it? Why I am getting up so early? Unfortunately, Morgan's sleepover ended at 9. I knew better than to be the last one to get her (she doesn't like that), so I got up and left around 8:20. We went to get her hair cut (well really to get it barely trimmed), and then we took Mike to get his car. This left us with 45 minutes to get shoes and to find the audition (Morgan auditioned for an acting/modeling agency). We managed to find some black shoes, and then we rushed off to the audition.



They had them read lines before the camera, and then they interviewed her and me. We have to call Monday at 1:20 to see if she made it to the next round. She is so excited about it that I hope she makes it.

Then, we went to J. Alexander's. The audition was right down the street. It was good, but I didn't have any flex points left so I had lunch and no dinner. :)

The rest of the day I cursed Rum and wished I were not awake. Finally, I crashed at at 10:30. Ahhhhh

Friday, November 16, 2007

FRIDAY!!!!!!!

I am not sure if I have ever been so happy to see Friday roll around. What a week! With all of the go lives and the release getting its final cut on Friday, it has been quite a week. It just seemed to be one of those weeks where all kinds of things went wrong, and then it was really busy on top of that.


Mike left his keys at a client in Louisianna, so I had to pick him up from the aiport. Of course, Morgan also had a sleepover that started at 6. Thankfully, Kelly continued her angelic status and offered to take Morgan to the sleepover. Whew. Mike and I met Tony, Sidney, Mark, Mark, and Sidney's husband out at Channelside. We went to Howl at the Moon, Stump's, and Banana Joe's. It was a ton of fun, and I am so glad that I had flexpoints to spend! Spend them I did. I actually went over 2 points. :( Oh well, I still did pretty well. I will go 2 points lower than normal on Sunday. :) We had a great time eating at Stump's. I hadn't ever eaten there before, but it was really good. I had prime rib which is my favorite type of steak. I was good and had green beans since Mike was a bad influence and ordered Nachos. They were really good and spicy. Of course, the alcohol wasn't so good for the points allowance, but it sure did spice up the night. Mad Dog made an appearance, and I think Trixie was on her way out when we left. :)

Thursday, November 15, 2007

First ASP Days

What a day, week, month it has been. I am so thankful that tomorrow is Friday. It is also running/walking day, so I will let you know how my last week 4 run goes. :)

I saw some press today on Misys MyWay (that name still sounds more like a Burger King Hamburger than an EMR but that is just my opinion). They put out a press release to say that they have resellers and at least one client. Funniest quote: Misys has been at the forefront of developing cutting-edge solutions for physicians,” said Vik Agrawal of etransmedia technology, Inc. “Becoming a channel partner for Misys was an easy decision.

The article made me think of my first days at Bond. It was a pretty big adjustment for me going from client server to ASP/web-based software. Some of the adjustment was navigation and GUI related and some of it was just based on the ease of using one page in the EMR and also in a kiosk and portal and whevever else. Very cool. I also remember discovering some of the challenges with ASP and having all of us look at each other and say....hmm...Of course, we figured out ways to deal with them, but some of them were pretty funny (ok, maybe not then but they are now). :)

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Code Cut-off and Kidney Stones

Code Cutoff. You always know the day is going to stink when it is code cutoff day. Today was no different. I had one thing after another go badly. It was rough. I even fell in the dev lab today. I was trying to hurry, and i just walked right over a bag that was next to my feet. At least I wasn't wearing a dress! We are holding the release until Monday. We want to be sure it is tested thoroughly.

Morgan had another girl quit from her mini team. I don't get these parents who let their kids quit in the middle of the year. I believe that when you commit to a team you should finish the season.

I have the statcounter on my site, and it tells me the searches used that find my site. I keep noticing a ton of hits based on pulling a stent out and kidney stones in general. So, I thougth I would give a little bit of kidney stone history for those interested. I had my first stone when I was pregnant. It broke up in labor, and that ended a long nightmare. Oh wait. The trick was on Amy. Ha Ha...you have another one. And this continued over the last 9 years. I have had so many kidney stones that I have lost count. Sometimes, they can pass on their own. I have had a few blasted through lithotripsy, but this hasn't worked too well for me. The rest have been removed using a basket through a cystoscope. Unfortunately, this often leads to the stent requirement. You can think of a stent as a cast for the ureter (the tube that takes urine from the kidney to the bladder). It might collapse after surgery if it didn't have its cast. Basically, stents are awful. They are uncomfortable and sometimes even cause awful pain. For some reason, mine hurt the very worst after they are removed. I have noticed that it seems to hurt for about 4 - 6 hours at the maximum level when it is removed, and then it tapers off. I have also noticed that Flomax helps a lot and so does sitting in a warm bath. I guess the ureter is just mad when that "cast" is removed and it swells. As soon as the swelling subsides, it feels better. So, don't freak out if it hurts really badly after the stent is removed. Take pain meds, take Flomax if you ahve it, and take a warm bath. It will be over before you know it.

Also, my last stent had a string that allowed me to remove it. I know why people are searching about it because I did the same thing! I wanted to know what to expect when it was pulled out. I chickened out and made my husband pull it. The pulling part wasn't nearly as bad as I had anticipated. I just had the typical after affects. I mean, it wasn't fun. But it wasn't awful. It is over really quickly.

Leave me some comments with your stories. Kidney stones are no fun. Maybe one day they will find a cure for calcium oxalate stones. That is the kind I have.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Successful Go Lives

This week has brought a record setting week of go lives for Bond. We have ever person in the field who can possibly take a client live I think. Well, other than development resources since it is release week. It has been crazy. However, these clients have all done a fantastic job, and their implementation staff has done a fantastic job. The main things they have in common:

1. At least one major advocate pushing the project from the inside
2. They took the time to learn the options and customized (or had us customize) the application to be their perfect workflow.
3. They practiced real visits prior to go live.

It has been interesting watching them. Successful EMR implementations are not difficult if people want it. They often fail when there is a "Staff Infection" as Sharon says. If there isn't someone driving the project internally, it is too easy to fall into excuses. To quote Mike, "Your goal should be a boring go live."

I am so proud of my Bond family. We have come so far, and it is so exciting to see all of these clients go live in one week and do so well!

Monday, November 12, 2007

Release minus 3 days

Our release is scheduled for Thursday. I hate release week. Everyone is all stressed out. Then, after it goes out, there is the calm before the storm. Then, there are the inevitable issues found that must be fixed quickly. Then, everyone is happy. But, until then, only slightly relieved.

We have officially picked our first 5k, although this one will probably be as much walking as jogging. It is a fundraiser for the epilepsy foundation. Epilepsy is a hard condition for a friend or family member to have, and there are many successful treatments available. However, many of them are only available if you meet specific criteria. I would love to see the criteria broadened so that more people can be freed from the battles faced with epilepsy. I have seen first hand the miracle that can happen with treatment. So, the Tampa Bay Lightning Reindeer Run 5k is this one. It also has kids races. Seems like a lot of fun.

Today was a rest day as far as exercise. Tomorrow morning will be the next run. Wish me luck!

Tag Answers

So, I was tagged twice. Here are my answers.

My first tag was by the Cheer Chick.

1.whats your favorite color - orange for my Tennessee Vols

2.whats your favorite animal - cat

3.whats your favorite song - Jack and Diane

4.whats your favorite book - Too many to name - Nelson Demille is my favorite author

5.whats your favorite movie - Pretty Woman

6.whats your favorite number - 4

7.whats your favorite day of the week - FRIDAY

8.do you have any pets if so how many - 1 kitten and 2 cats (well, really only one of them is mine)

My second tag by the Sports Chick asked:

What are your 2 favorite songs by Hannah Montana? Rock Star and Nobody's Perfect

So, I am tagging Michael, Banu, and Courtney (revenge lol).

Sunday, November 11, 2007

Sunday, Sunday

We had a great family day today. We all went jogging/walking together, and then we made Taco Soup and Vegetable Soup. It was a good day for soup. Morgan has been driving me crazy to make banana smoothies. So, we made smoothies with milk, bananas, equal, and ice. All of it was YUMMY.

NOOOO....The poor Titans lost. My parents were at the game too. Whenever I see the Titans on TV, I always think of the Goovenest Fan of the Game contest they always had (have?) there. One time, my dad won it. There used to be a man who sat next to us who would jiggle his belly every week to try to win. If someone in your section won, the entire section got Papa John's pizza.

As I have been using my Polar watch when exercising, it has made me think more about medical devices and Electronic Health Records. If they can make so many cool gadgets that can interface with a computer, why isn't there some kind of standard to capture that data and store it in other applications. I would love to be able to upload my Polar Watch data to my doctor and let him see how my heart is performing during my exercise. I would think he would like it too. Of course, Bond Clinician has a great patient portal that will let the patient type that data in. That is cool, but it would be even better if it could automatically capture it. From a development perspective, these devices (and other more medically useful ones) all store data differently and there isn't a real standard on how to get that data into the EMR. Some day....

Recipes:
Grams' Taco Soup
1 tsp black pepper
1 tsp table salt
1 cup cooked onions
1 1/2 cup water
2 cup canned kidney beans (drained)
2 cup canned pinto beans (drained)
2 cup canned lima beans (drained)
6 cup canned diced tomatoes
3 cup chopped green chilies
35 oz raw lean ground beef
2 cup canned hominy (drained)
1 Packet McCormick Taco dry seasoning mix
1 packet Hidden Valley Ranch Dressing Packet

Brown onion and beef. Add all other ingredients. Simmer for 1 hr.
Makes 12 servings - 6 points a piece. Serve with chips and cheese (optional)

Mike's Vegetable Soup
2 Tbsp curry powder
2 1/4 Tbsp olive oil
4 cup cooked green beans
3 cup carrot(s)
5 small stalk celery
1/2 clove garlic clove(s)
2 cup onion(s)
16 cup water
4 cup canned diced tomatoes
1 Tbsp dried basil
8 uncooked Bliss potatoes
1 can Bush's Black Eyed Peas, 1 Can
1 can Thifty Maid Sweet Corn
10 serving Wyler's Instant Beef Bouillon Cubes 1 Cube

Cut up Veggies
Saute the onions and celery
Stir in garlic and curry powder and basil
Saute until onions are transparent
Add carrots
Add 16 cups water
Add Buillon cubes
Add green beans
Simmer 1 hr
Add potatoes, and cook for30 min
Add canned veggies and cook for another 30 mins
Makes 20 servings - 1 point each

Saturday, November 10, 2007

Ahhhh New Shoes

Running Shoes - ahhh...Courtney who is miles ahead of me in this running stuff told me about a store in Tampa called The Running Center. She told me that I needed to get good running shoes. So, I have been thinking about that every time I go out, but I didn't want to rush out and buy them early if I wasn't really going to do it. I decided that finishing the 3rd week counted as long enough, so I went there today (of course, I went AFTER running). Anyway, the nice people at the store watch you walk and run (which I have to admit was kind of weird), and then they advise you on the type of shoe to wear. So, she gave me two shoes to pick from, and I had to try a couple of widths and sizes to get the right fit. As soon as I put them on though I could feel the difference. They actually support my foot! :) They are Asics. I think my old shoes are 5 years old and pretty flat. I can't wait to see what these are like on the run. Also, they tell you to go running in them and bring them back if they don't work. I will keep you posted. I got so excited about the shoes that I thought about my friend Liz. She LOVES shoes.

Morgan had cheer practice this morning, and I completely forgot that Lifestyles was closed today for a family picnic. So, like a good girl, I showed up for step only to remember that they weren't open. Bummer. Old Amy would have used that as an excuse, but not new Amy! I went to the park and did the week three couch 2 5k program again. They had flag football games going, so it provided some entertainment while I did it.

Tennessee did well today and beat Arkansas. I am still a little bitter about last years game, so I was glad the Vols won. If they win against Vandy and Kentucky (which used to be a given but isn't any more), they will get to go to Atlanta for the SEC Championship game. I never would have thought that would be a possibility when I was watching Florida stomp my poor Vols or when I was watching Alabama slaughter my poor Vols. Thankfully, my Dad's team Mississippi State beat Alabama for me today. :) Georgia slaughtered Auburn today, so I had to hear Mark talk about how the Dawgs own Alabama (since Mississippi State and Georgia beat the Alabama teams). My poor brother Mike will have to hear it for a while now.

We went to watch Michael play baseball today. He pitched really well, and at one point he tackled a kid to get him out near home plate. It was pretty funny. We went to eat pizza after the game. I have been saving my flex points for pizza all week. It was SO good. I am pretty sure that is what flex points were created for. :)

I also started a new blog today for my Couch 2 5k program and diet. It is here.

Friday, November 9, 2007

Multi-tasking, Vision, TAG

Multi-tasking - juggling many things at one time and doing none of them well

I have always prided myself on being able to multi-task. Over the summer, I read the Four Hour Work Week, and it talks a lot about why multi-tasking is bad. I completely agree, and I keep teaching myself that lesson over and over and over. He talks a lot about deciding what your two highest priorities of the day are and doing them and only them until they are finished. I started doing this over the summer, and it worked very well. I also was only answering email twice a day. I seriously need to go back to that strategy. I am always trying to do too many tasks at once, and I feel like I am never devoting enough time to each one.

I got my eyes checked, and apparently I should never be able to do anything without some kind of corrective lens. I talked to him about my troubles with glasses and contacts. After much discussion, we decided that contacts are the best because they prescription is closest to the eye and doesn't cause as many side affects. I tried one pair of contacts, and I couldn't see because it felt like it was moving all over my eye. As he looked in my eye, he could see them moving around. So, we tried a different kind. It is thicker, but it was 1. Easier to put in and 2. Feels more comfortable. I hope these will make a big difference. :)

I got up and ran the week 3 Couch to 5K this morning. I actually ran an additional minute at the end. Amazing. I am still not sure about week 4 and the 5 minute sections, but I hope I will be able to do it. I am going to get new running shoes this week from a real running store. :) More people at Bond are joining in the fun, so it should be interesting. The 5k event information can be found here for Feb 9th. On the 10th, they are also having relay marathons. The first leg is 7 miles, the second leg is 7 miles, the third leg is 8.2 miles, and the fouth leg is 4 miles. I think that would be a lot of fun, but I don't think I will be ready for that this year. Maybe next year, I can do it. :)

Since I was "tagged" by my beloved friend Courtney, here are the rules of the "Tag."

Link to the person who tagged you, and post the rules on your blog.
Share 7 random and/or weird facts about yourself
Tag 7 random people at the end of your post, and include links to their blogs
Let each person know that they've been tagged by leaving a comment in their blog

Random and/or weird facts about yourself
1. I have lived in nine cities in 6 states - all in the southeast unless you consider Missouri as a Yankee state. (My brothers tormented me about this as a kid until my dad told me that Missouri was technically a "Border" state.
2. I am divorced and remarried, and I have one daughter, one step-daughter, and two step sons (and 3 cats and a fish in the house). My husband is a definite improvement over the first model.
3. I am a nurse who works with medical software instead of patients (smart decision).
4. I have survived a plane crash (and walked across the tarmac with a huge Tennessee Volunteers flag - Go Vols!).
5. My family is an all SEC family. My Dad went to Mississippi State. My mom got her Master's at South Carolina. My oldest brother went to Auburn. My middle brother went to Georgia. I wet to Tennessee. We all unite against the evil Gators, raunchy Tide, and pitiful Rebels. Football season is fun in my house. I love my family. They are the best family you could ever have.
6. I used to smoke and never thought I would really quit for good. I finally quit for good on June 2, 2007. This was the single hardest thing I have ever done in my life.
7. I have chronic kidney stones, and I have passed a few, had a few zapped by lithotripsy, and had several removed. I hate stents with a passion and try to avoid them at all costs.

Now, I will tag Morgan, Mike, Krishan, Lee, Kim, Sarathy, and Cruft (who I don't know but I enjoy the blog).

Remember, this is all Courtney's fault! :) Tag, your're it!

Picture taken from Applebees

Wow, the kids are actually being loving to each other. I needed to capture the moment. :)

Thursday, November 8, 2007

Reorganizing

Today, I felt like I was at Misys, the home of the reorg. I am trying desperately to determine the best structure for the implementation team and who fits in which position the best. It brought back fond memories. We used to always joke, "If you don't like the way it is now, just wait because it will change soon enough." I hope that we don't need to change that often. It is pretty fun to watch the company and departments mature. I never thought I would like process stuff, but I really enjoy trying to find the best process that will work and then trying to improve it. Who knew?

I thought this article was interesting with the "how to know that you need to reorg list."

There are a wide variety of reasons for reorganizing an organization, particularly in today's rapidly changing marketplace. However, there are several reasons for reorganization that seem to keep coming up in small businesses, whether for-profit or nonprofit. These reasons include
1. An employee keeps complaining (and you agree) that he or she is overloaded with work.
2. Employees complain that their activities overlap.
3. An employee indicates (and you agree) that he or she does not have enough work to do during a work day.
4. Employees complain that they're reporting to more than one boss, or supervisor.
5. An employee complains that their work includes very different tasks. For example, they may have a highly complex and demanding project (e.g., leading strategic planning) and a large routine, recurring task (sorting a great deal of the organization's daily mail).
6. Management notices a large amount of employee turnover, that is, employees don't stay long enough with the organization.
7. A department, or major function in the organization, has recurring problems.

NOTE: It is not always problems that provoke the need for reorganizing. For example, if the organization has been conducting strategic planning and produced new goals, these goals may require the organization to reorganize. For example, if the business wants to expand marketshare in a certain region, then the organization may need a new office in that region, more sales people, etc.

I also heard today that Misys is banning AOL Instant Messanger (AIM) starting soon. Interesting. Wonder what fun stuff they will do next? I haven't really heard much in a while other than what I read on other sites, but the past few days I have heard from several people who are frustrated. It doesn't seem like people feel very confident in the direction being provided so far. It is sad because people seemed so hopeful a few months ago.

The death march, also known as release, is churning along. Unfortunately, the timeframe isn't gowing. :) Gotta love releases. This is a really cool release, but it is a lot to test and prepare for.

I didn't do my Couch to 5k today. I decided to let the body rest for a day. I am going to try to get up and go in the morning. I really like using the podcasts. It makes the time go by really fast because you don't have to think about what you are doing. I am nervous about next week where you run 3 minutes as the short portion and 5 minutes as the longer portion. I am not sure I am ready for 5 minutes yet. :) Of course, I didn't think I was ready for 3 minutes yet either and I have done ok. :) Anyone else doing the couch to 5k?

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

Week 3 Runs 2 and 3

Today, I got up and did week 3 day 2 of the couch 2 5k program. It felt good. I really like getting up and exercising in the morning ONCE I AM OUT OF BED. I hate getting out of bed. Something about that transition is just no fun. However, once I get up and get moving, I feel SO great.

Work was pretty good. We are in major crunch to get the release out. I am ready for the stress to decrease. I love working in development, but the end of the release cycle is rough.

After work, I did a SECOND round of the couch 2 5k program. WOW!!! I have had several requests for the couch 2 5k program link and for the podcases. Follow this link to get the program and this link to get the podcast by Robert Ulrey.

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

shriner's cute wall mural

We loved the wall and had to take a picture. The doctor said 4 more weeks of no running, jumping, tumbling. Bummer.

I am so proud of myself. I got up this morning and started the week 3 part of the couch 2 5k program. In this one, you jog for 90 seconds, walk for 90 seconds, jog for 3 minutes, walk for 3 minutes, and then repeat. I know for some of you, this is no big deal. For me, the former smoking fiend, this is a huge deal. I was so proud because I actually think I could have kept going and doing it a few more times. I am going to go again tomorrow morning. I will let you know how it goes. For anyone thinking about the couch to 5k program, it ROCKS!