On Tap for Today

A fun loving, inspired living blog


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Today: A weekend at home.

Home Alone

My older brother and sister-in-law celebrated their wedding anniversary this week, which meant Nick and I got to babysit our niece for the first time.  We partied like animals, singing Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star while changing into PJs at 6:45 PM and reading not one, but two books before bed.  She is just heaven to be around.

Home Improvement

Much of the rest of the weekend was spent working on wedding projects and trying to rectify the broken sink situation.  We made two trips to Home Depot and managed to sneak in a little fun between visits to the faucet aisle.  There is so much to see and touch (and break) in that store.  I was tempted to buy a pink ride-on pony from the Christmas section, but refrained.  Instead, we picked up some PVC pipe for mobility and Crossfit practice at home.  It will also come in handy when I want to turn off the light switch without getting up from the sofa.  Just kidding.  Mostly.

Home away from home

 

We spent this morning at Clark’s home away from home, the local children’s hospital where he does his therapy dog visits.  I can think of no better way to pass a rainy Sunday morning than watching the kids snuggle with the Frenchie, feed him treats, tug on his ears, and hold him in their laps.  It makes my heart swell.

Home cookin’

At the risk of tooting my own horn, I’m very excited to share that On Tap for Today was included in the North Atlantic edition of the Whole Foods Market 2012 Holiday Magazine’s “On the Web: Fresh Voices” feature, along with my pal Caitlin and the lovely We Are Not Martha girls.  I’m really grateful to the team at Whole Foods for including me, and was sure to pick up a few copies today after grabbing groceries at River Street.

On the menu tonight?  Enough vegetarian chili to feed an army.

 

Homemade

What would Sunday night be without a do-it-myself manicure?

I live for rituals.  And weekends at home.

Also On Tap for Today:

  • Packing up goodies for Kasee, my #atxbos match
  • Getting ready for the week ahead
  • Seating charts 🙂

What’s your Sunday ritual?


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Today: My fairy WODmother. {and a Reebok #getafterit giveaway}

[tweetmeme source=”elizabethev” only_single=false]The downside to being an adult is that when something breaks, you sort of need to fix it (or in many cases, have it fixed… because you don’t always know how to repair machines).  Our water heater peaced it on Monday night, making for several cold showers, one very hot shower taken at my parents’ house, an excessive use of deodorant (I am convinced cold showers do nothing other than lower one’s core temperature), and some general crankiness this week.  On Thursday night, we came home to a freshly replaced water heater… aaaand a freshly broken kitchen sink.  The plummer giveth, and the plummer taketh away.  And he leaveth dirty footprints and greasy paper towels all over thine condo.

I don’t really understand how any of this happened.  I just know that it annoyed me.  And that I got a headache.  I fought the temptation to wallow and I checked the mail instead.  Of my many quirks, an obsessive need to check the mail is right up there with my obsessive need to check the weather.  Incidentally, I don’t think it was supposed to rain on Friday.  But it did.  With just twenty-one days until we get married, I live for the sight of a response card (or twelve) tucked in among the bills and magazines.  Thursday night’s mail was slim on responses, but included a package from Reebok.   I like to think of the brand as my Fairy WODmother.  I opened the box to find two new CrossFit Tri Blend tops, one with short sleeves and the other with long sleeves.  This was just the kick in the pants short shorts I needed to get out of the faucet-less condo, and into the box.

Both tops fit perfectly.  I tend to wear tank tops to class, but knowing that the garage door at our box would be open, the temperature is dropping, and I was still recovering from my last cold shower– I opted for the grey long sleeve.  It’s lightweight but still warm, it stayed dry throughout a tough workout, didn’t itch at all, and was really comfortable.  I had my first attempt at rope climbs last night, and I think wearing long sleeves definitely helped protect my arms.  I added a whole 25lbs. to my high bar box squat PR (since my first attempt two months ago), cranked through 100 kettle bell swings and 50 ring dips (with a blue band).  As I’ve said before, the clothes don’t make the athlete, hard work does… but wearing perfectly fitting, high performing fabrics definitely helps.  Need proof?  Ask me about the time I ran a 10k with a wedgie.  Needless to say, I can’t wait to break out the short sleeve top this weekend.

Because my Fairy WODmother is extra generous, I have a little something to share.  If you were at Healthy Living Summit 2012, Fit Bloggin or other events, you may have seen the Reebok team outfitted in eye-catching  #getafterit shirts.  These shirts are now available for men and women online, and I have one women’s top (size M)  to giveaway.  To enter, please let a comment below.  I will select a random winner at the end of the day on Tuesday.

UPDATE:  This giveaway is now closed.   Congratulations, Caroline!  And many thanks to everyone who entered.

 

Caroline: I saw so many #getafterit’s at the Tufts 10k…even tried keeping pace with one (literally got after it)! I would love to sport my own…thanks!

[For the record: I received these Reebok products at no cost.  I was not compensated for my review of these items, and my opinions are entirely my own.  I write about brands I respect and enjoy, and Reebok fits this criteria.]

Also On Tap for Today:

How are you planning to get after it this week?


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Today: North of the border.

[tweetmeme source=”elizabethev” only_single=false]Sometimes I think I should have been born in Canada.  It would explain my natural affinity for the cold,  general politeness, hockey, the French language (even if oui is pronounced ouais up there), and umCanadian people.

My parents recently returned from a trip to Prince Edward Island to visit Anne of Green Gables celebrate their anniversary, and seeing their photos and hearing about their vacation only confirmed my strong belief that I would make good Canadian.  I mean, I love churches and potatoes and flowers and fields.

I traveled across the border several times as a younger person, for various reasons:

  • A French immersion trip to Quebec City, during which I swore I saw a dead penguin frozen in the St. Lawrence river.  My genius-ness apparently does not extend to geography or biology or whatever subject would have prepared me to know better.
  • A jazz festival and competition in Toronto – I wore my itchy wool select vocal jazz choir sweater (if that doesn’t scream the coolest, I don’t know what does) to the top of the Sears Tower
  • Spring Break 2003 (or whatever year I turned 21) in Montreal
  • I went to Niagra Falls once, too… maybe on the way to Toronto?  Who knows.

I’d love to revisit each of those places as a grown-up, especially now that the jazz sweater is long gone.  An adventure in the Maritimes and a trip to Vancouver (preferably if the B’s were in town for a Stanley Cup replay) are on my Canuckit List.  That’s like a bucket list, but for things in Canada.  Also on that list: appearing on one (or any) of the HGTV shows filmed up there.  Even if it was just to bring coffee to the set, or something.  Maybe offer my opinion on fabrics.

I like when people say reno.  It makes home renovation sound so lovely and effortless, and not at all like having a man in jean shorts wallpapering your living room, while standing on a ladder directly in front of your air duct so that his 80’s singalong can be broadcast at full volume into your bedroom where you’re working from home (to supervise the construction, you’re no stranger to hard hats) and not conveniently, on a conference call.  Hmm.  Maybe I’d have to improve my ‘tude a bit before gaining citizenship up there?

[Image source]

If I got to choose, I’d totally want to be on Sarah’s House.  I think Sarah Richardson is just the cutest.  She seems kind, thoughtful, earnest, hardworking, friendly, a little silly, and therefore, 900% Canadian to me.  I think her sidekick Tommy and I would get along famously, as well.  I was home the other day folding laundry (the glamour of my life abounds) and happened upon a Sarah’s Cottage marathon, featuring re-runs of episodes that (according to my DVR), originally ran in 2009.  Side note: I refuse to watch television in real time anymore.  Can’t deal with the political ads (that’s another post for another day).  I hate commercials with talking and/or dancing babies, too.  So creepy.

[Image source]

Anyway, I am rather glad I saved four whole episodes because there was so much to love about Ms. Richardson’s complete overhaul of their family’s summer cottage.  I want to paint floors.  I want to monogram cabinet doors.  I want to have our towel sets embroidered with numbers.  I want whatever a “bunkie” is.  And I want Sarah to choose every paint color, every stitch of fabric, every wall sconce and every piece of furniture that we bring into our next home.  Wherever that may be.

..likely in the United States.  Harrrumpf.

Also On Tap for Today:

If you could live anywhere (including Sarah’s cottage in Canada, obviously), where would you land?


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Today: White water… crafting.

[tweetmeme source=”elizabethev” only_single=false]Nick spend the weekend with his groomsmen and friends white water rafting.  Clark and I spent the weekend sleeping, eating and, um… crafting.

After finishing up a top secret project (a TSP, if you will) for my lovely bridesmaids, I tackled a few other things I’ve been meaning to accomplish since, like, last August.  From keeping our paint colors organized to finding a way to keep my necklaces untangled, I checked off more than a few (non-top secret) projects over the past few days.

I got my car tuned up (it has officially become a money pit on wheels), had my first wedding dress fitting (I can’t wait to show you pictures, but… I need to wait to show your pictures), cleaned like wild and spent as much time outside as possible.

How cool is that bird’s nest?  Very recycled chic… though I don’t recommend embellishing your home with TP left in a city park.  I spotted the nest while taking Clark on an extra long walk last night.  He was more interested in the mouse running up the sidewalk.

I rounded out the weekend with my first solo WOD.  Lame as it may be, I had never gone to CrossFit alone before this morning.  With Nick two states away, I could have easily skipped the workout and slept in, but I knew I’d be better off (wo)man-ing up and getting after it.  Not surprisingly, I was glad I went.  The workout was really fun, and I love knowing I am getting a little better and stronger each time I show up.

While I may have not needed a helmet or paddle for my weekend, it certainly feels like I got a lot done. (As I write this, though, I just remembered I loaded the washer… but never turned it on… hmmm.  Can’t win ’em all.)

Also On Tap for Today:

Do you have projects waiting to be tackled?  

 


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Today: Flashcards for grown-ups.

[tweetmeme source=”elizabethev” only_single=false]I wouldn’t have survived 17 years of schooling had it not been for flashcards.  Lots and lots of flashcards.  While I pride myself on being a good listener, I am most definitely a visual learner.  When it came time to pass my finite math final (a class my mom helped me choose because finite means there’s an end, and I hoped that class would mark the end of a tumultuous streak of, um, not being able to add), I stayed up for nearly 36 hours straight, memorizing formulas.  And hoping I could figure out which variables to replace with which numbers.  Flashcards saved my life.  Or more accurately, my GPA.

They still come in handy, now that I am grown-up.  From putting together a workout, to keeping the condo in relative order, to finding a bit of inspiration, there’s a flashcard for just about everything.  If if there isn’t?  Welp, you can make one.

A few years ago, my brother and sister-in-law gave me a pack of brilliance cards with my Christmas present.  I had no idea things like this existed, but I was instantly hooked.  They’re like fortune cookies without the calories.  And crumbs.

I bet you could make a great set of your own with an old deck of playing cards and your favorite quotes, mantras, inspirational sayings, or photos of my dog.

My collection of grown-up flashcards includes Portuguese words and phrases (made that set myself using some good old fashioned index cards), a yoga deck, Jillian Michael’s Hot Body in a Box, and various others.

In my perpetual quest to stay organized at work and at home, I stumbled upon Buttoned Up and their great line of notepads and other products.  They make a set of grown-up flashcards aimed at building better organization habits.

They’re all great for travel, stashing in your over-sized lady briefcase, or for spreading out across the floor like a stressed out coed during exam week.

Speaking of which, good luck on finals, student friends. 😉

Also On Tap for Today:

What kind of learner are you?  


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Today: Clark weighs in.

[tweetmeme source=”elizabethev” only_single=false]Clark fancies himself an explorer.  Whether it’s casually climbing atop the toilet, taking a seat on my laptop, or tiptoeing across the window sill, he is determined to go where no Frenchie has gone before.  Today’s adventure?  The scale.

I was in the shower this morning when I noticed Clark had left his usual post on the bathmat.  I don’t know why he does the things he does, but I sure am glad he does them (and that Nick was quick enough to catch the little dude on film).

Also On Tap for Today:

What’s your favorite spot in your dwelling?


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Today: Prepare to spring forward.

[tweetmeme source=”elizabethev” only_single=false]If you were worried that I had succumbed to a trust fall related injury, never fear.  I am alive and mostly no worse for the wear.  The ceramic skeleton key that used to hang by our table, however, didn’t fare quite so well.  I’ve been tempering last weekend’s festivities with 13 hour days at the office, endless meetings, and welp… staring at this.

The thought of springing forward and subsequently losing an entire hour of sleep has me downright cranky.

Then again, I am usually cranky.  Because I rarely sleep enough.  And sometimes because I eat too much sugar.  I am a work in progress.  High on my self-improvement agenda lately is making quality sleep a priority.  Incidentally, that handle belongs to a door on that cute little cottage in Boothbay Harbor.

While I have a million excuses for both staying up too late, and pressing snooze too many times the following morning, I am making a bit of progress, starting with a mini-makeover.

I went to town at West Elm.  And yes, I do keep a Twitter bird-shaped nightlight at my bedside. You never know when you might need portable illumination.

In addition to my attempt to design on several dimes, I’ve made a few adjustments to my evening and nighttime routines.  Rather than scramble in the morning, I am spending a few minutes before bed putting away dishes, packing my lunch, running a load of laundry, putting away errant shoes and Frenchie toys, picking out an outfit (and then another one for when I decide I hate the first) and carving out my to do list for the next day.  It’s amazing how much more quickly my brain turns off when it’s not preoccupied with the frenzy of the next day.  Speaking of frenzy, I am trying to replace cop shows with reading.  And simplifying my soul.  Sort of.

While 40 days will be up before we know it, I highly recommend this read for anyone trying to incorporate the Lenten message more practically into their day.  From spending 15 minutes in silence, to wearing your oldest clothes, Paula Huston offers really interesting suggestions and exercises for connecting with those who suffer.  I just made the books sound really depressing; it’s not.  Quite the opposite, really.

After reading for a few minutes  in my newly refreshed bed, I think about all that I have to be grateful for.  I turn up my sound machine (set at “ocean”) to full blast, and before you know it, I’m out like a light.  And then I wake up an hour later, and remember that I forgot to set my alarm.  Baby steps.

Also On Tap for Today:

Are you an early riser?  I need your help.