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One of my main goals for my Hawaiian vacation was to fill my time alone with as many fitness adventures as I could.  Since Oahu offers so many different options,  decided to do a bit of research and discovered that a 30-minute drive would bring me to the Makapu’u Lighthouse Trail.

There’s something very intriguing to me about lighthouses.  They’re literally guides for sailors at night, and maybe because of all the novels I’ve studied, there’s something so romantic to me about them.  I never realized how drawn to lighthouses I am until this trip, but I am going to make it a point to go to the local lighthouses we have in the San Francisco area when I get back home.

When I looked up info about the trail itself on my Trail Advisor app, it said that it was a paved trail that offered a steady incline to the top, easy to navigate for people of all fitness levels.  I knew I could make the trek, and the promise of the views along the way were all I needed to decide that this was my Tuesday morning outing.

Getting to the trail by car was an easy, beautiful drive, and because I got there early, around 8:30am, parking was a breeze.  (I’ve been on California time throughout my trip, meaning I’m waking up at 3am local time).

10006917_10151952043440426_6763370043924131053_n The hills surrounding the trail were lush and green, and the path itself was very easy to navigate.  I put on some music, and started my assent.  I was a steady incline, enough to keep my heart rate going the entire way.

1534472_10151952042795426_132579950536500944_n Before too long, I saw the ocean peeking out among the brush, and if these were the views at the start of my journey, I was anxious to see what awaited me at the top. Between my music and these views, I think I was smiling from ear to ear the whole way up.

1601506_10151952043315426_8525203781774062793_n10259743_10151952043615426_6302813055275166739_n11893_10151952043700426_7882390771869107988_n10258807_10151952043655426_5132203295441575976_n1794676_10151952044000426_1692567953378443486_n It was right around this point when the breezy morning turned super windy, and the hat I’d been wearing to protect my face from the sun flew off my head!  Luckily, I was able to snatch it from the ground before it flew away.

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I walked for a while holding the hat with one hand and my iPhone in the other. Every time I stopped to take a photo, the hat flew off – about 4 times total. Until I remembered that I could tighten it in the back.

The water below me was so blue, the sky so clear – as I walked the trail I couldn’t stop thinking about how lucky I was to be living this life.  I’d decided that this vacation was my reward for all my hard work over the past year in accomplishing so many of my weight loss goals.  This hike wouldn’t have been half as enjoyable 132 pounds ago.  I would’ve been severely out of breath, concerned about whether or not I would make it all the way to the top, and not living in the moment and enjoying all of this natural beauty all around me.  Instead, I soaked it all in and truly felt blessed to be at this point in my life.

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Before too much longer, I was at the top of the trail, looking down at these stunning views of the surrounding area.

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10150652_10151952045015426_6540676470749329357_n It was so windy at the top that I nearly lost my iPhone capturing this shot, but it was worth it, even if it is a bit blurry, I think it helps capture the wind whipping all around.

And finally, the view I’d been waiting for all day – the lighthouse!

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It was smaller than I thought, but a true jewel on that hilltop.  I love this picture so much that I’ve made it my wallpaper on the phone.

1466037_10151952045100426_452066782254352158_n I hiked to the top of this hill, which is amazing to me!

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To offer some perspective, the parking lot is in the middle of the photo. I took this about halfway back down the trail.

There’s really no other word for this hike than glorious.  It offered everything I love – views of the ocean, a great workout, and the chance to remind myself how far I’ve come and how lucky I am.

After the hike, I noticed a spot around the corner from the parking lot that was a bit of a hidden beach, filled with black volcanic rocks where I could perch and watch the white-tipped waves crashing. It reminded me a of a place near Half Moon Bay that’s really special to me. Somehow being here all alone with no other souls in sight made it all the more special, like it was a secret spot just for me.

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I shot this quick video soon after I’d sat down on the rocks. I don’t know what I was doing with the camera angles, but I’m glad I got a bit of  video:

 I don’t know for sure that these rocks are the remnants of a volcano, but given that I’m in Hawaii, that’s the story I’m going with. I sat on the rocks for about 30 minutes, just taking in the majesty and power of the ocean. I’ve always been drawn to the ocean, there’s something very spiritual about it for me.

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If you look carefully about halfway up the hill in the distance, you can spy the little lighthouse.

If you look carefully about halfway up the hill in the distance, you can spy the little lighthouse.

1546144_10151952046655426_3891003743253631992_nEven though the lighting is bad and you can hardly see my face, I wanted to make sure that I captured the fact that I was there on what was a magical morning.

 

 

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bilbl_scale.jpgI usually weigh myself every single morning.  I get up, use the restroom, take off my pjs, and jump on the scale.  I use it as a check-in for how I did the day before and what I may need to do that day.  I don’t let the number define my day either way, although when I see a drop I do get a smile on my face.  I only record my weight once a week, on Sundays, because I know how much the scale can fluctuate.

This daily weighing may seem obsessive to some.  And for some people, it can be unhealthy.  But for me, I have used daily weigh-ins as a tool throughout my weight loss journey.  Longtime readers will recall that I used to avoid the scale (and recording the numbers on this blog) at all costs.  I’d go weeks without weighing in, mostly because I wanted to live in denial.  I knew how badly I’d been eating, or how much I’d overindulged, or that I’d stopped at the drive-thru one too many times, and I didn’t want to face those effects in the digital number that would show up on the scale.  At one point I moved to monthly weigh-ins, but that didn’t help my progress at all, in fact, it had the opposite effect.  When I moved to daily weigh-ins, I started to notice the trends in my body and the weight loss.  That I always gain weight right before my period, and then drop a ton the day I get it.  That eating sweets doesn’t affect my body as much as eating salty foods does; too bad I crave salty a lot more than sweet. That getting in a good workout helps me shed pounds, but overdoing it can actually make me “gain” water weight.  All of this info has helped me understand my body and the way things affect it.  Daily weigh-ins have been priceless for me.

The scale offers me motivation on the days when the numbers move slightly up and inspiration on the days when I see the numbers drop down into new weight loss territory.  The digital display offers me an accountability partner like no other. The numbers, whether positive or negative, offer me a bit of daily encouragement.

So you can imagine how out of sorts I’m feeling after being on vacation for 3 days and not weighing myself.  It’s part of my morning ritual like taking a shower or having a cup of coffee.  Without it I can survive, but things just aren’t as in sync.  I missed my usual Sunday weigh-in because I was here.  Which is totally fine. I know I’ve been eating well, have been getting in exercise, and have been staying on track.  I can feel that my clothes are fitting fine, and in some cases, a few garments feel a bit looser.  So there’s no reason to worry, and even if I come back from Hawaii up a couple of pounds, I know I  can get those off quickly.

But this morning I awoke and just had to get on the scale in the second bathroom here at the house I’m staying on vacation.  I’d just gotten my period and I knew I would see a loss.  But how accurate was this non-digital scale?  Scales can vary wildly, and who knew how this one was calibrated.  Still, it lured me.

So I got on and saw a 3-lb loss!  I did a little Hawaiian happy dance right there in the bathroom, and I’m sure Harvey the cat thought I’d lost my mind.  I didn’t record the weightloss on MFP because as I said, I have no idea how accurate this scale is, but it did give me a little pick me up and a sense of normalcy. I’m such a creature of habit, and I really like my routines. While I’m having an amazing time here in Hawaii, one thing I’m really looking forward to about going home is resuming my daily weigh-ins.

What’s the lesson here?  The scale is still a really important tool for me since I’m still in weight loss mode.  More than anything, I like the reassurance I get from it.  It’s like a trusted friend that I like checking in with everyday.

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I was really looking forward to my plans on Monday – snorkeling in Hanauma Bay.  I’d heard that Hanauma Bay had the best snorkeling in Oahu, and arguably the best in Hawaii.  I’d snorkeled before when I came here 25 years ago, and again in Jamaica, but it had been years.  Still, I hoped it came back to me the way riding a bike does.

I’d signed up for the snorkeling online through a Go Select Pass.  Since I wasn’t staying at a hotel in Honolulu, I had to drive to the Queen Kapiolani Hotel and wait there for the shuttle to pick me up.  Which meant a 45-minute commute from Kaneohe in heavy morning traffic.  I was told to park across the street, at the Honolulu Zoo parking lot, which was inexpensive at $1/hour.  I’d decided that morning to leave my debit card at home, because I didn’t want to leave it unattended while I was snorkeling.  This turned out to be a major mistake.

I got to the parking lot and discovered that the parking kiosks only took debit/credit cards.  Great, how was I going to avoid a parking ticket?  As if the stress of the drive and the parking situation wasn’t enough, I realized, after 45 minutes of waiting for the shuttle to arrive, that the company had lost my reservation.  I just got off the phone with the manager, who arranged for another shuttle to get me when the meter maid pulled up.  I told her about my situation, only have cash, and she said the kiosks also took quarters.  So I headed into the Queen Kapiolani to get a roll and avoid the $96 ticket. Even though the snorkeling adventure started out on a bad note, it all worked out ok in the end.

Once on the shuttle, I let all the stress wash away.  I was excited to be heading to the snorkeling adventure.  Because of the trouble I’d gone through, the company gave me a free underwater camera and a special breathing tube for the snorkel. Plus, seeing the beauty of Hanauma Bay made me even more anxious to discover what I could find in the ocean.

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I’ll post the photos I took with the underwater camera if any of them turn out well when I develop them, and I really hope they do.  I saw tons of fish and beautiful coral.  Floating around under the water was so serene.  It’s amazing that all of these creatures live just beneath the surface of the water. And just as I’d hoped, snorkeling came really easy to me.  I was only slightly concerned that I didn’t have a safety buddy, but I made sure that I was smart about where I was in relation to the shoreline, and just enjoyed myself.

The day was so much fun, and even the pouring rain as I came out of the water didn’t dampen my spirits. 1536554_10151950278295426_4683110617201285249_n

Throughout the day, I was reminded of all the things I can do now that I’ve lost all this weight.

  • First of all, I found swimwear that is comfortable and looks good so that I was not self-conscious, which is huge.
  • I had plenty of stamina to spend over an hour snorkeling all around Hanauma Bay.
  • I could walk all the way up the fairly steep hill back to the entrance with only a little bit of effort:

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The day was wonderful, and renewed my love of snorkeling.  I think part of the appeal, besides being able to see all the exotic fish in the ocean, is that fact that you can only do it in a few tropical locales.  The rarity of it makes it all the more special.

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This morning I was up early – at 5am – despite going to bed at midnight Hawaii time (3am SJ time!). Since I was up, I wanted to be sure to enjoy the amazing sunrise from the back porch.

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I took these shots while sipping coffee.  Does it really get any better?
Happy Sunday!

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After more than two months of planning, anticipating, and preparing, yesterday was finally the day I left for Hawaii.  All week I had the same feeling I had when I was 6 years old and my family was about to go to Disneyland for the first time. I had a lot of last minute errands, meeting, and grading to do to keep me occupied, but if I’m honest, my mind was really concentrating on the beaches of Oahu, and rightly so, I haven’t been on a true vacation since 2008, and I haven’t been anywhere tropical since my trip to Jamaica in 2001.

Back to Saturday morning. My flight was leaving at 8:55am, so my dad was set to pick me up at 7am to get there with time to spare. I woke up around 5am to make sure I had everything ready and I’m glad that it gave me time for a snuggle session with Sofi. Leaving her behind is the only downside to this trip. But she’s going to have a ton of fun with my sister, my nieces, and their dog, Minnie.

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Getting through the airport security was a breeze, even though that imaging machine is so strange. I even met a guy who was flirting relentlessly with me. Granted, he was 7 years old, but still. Lol. He was the cutest thing ever! He noticed that I had on an SF Giants tee and asked me to high five because he had on a 49ers sweatshirt. He said, “I’m going to Hawaii, where are you going?” And when I told him I was going there too, his face lit up. He asked me my name, and said, “bye, Bella” as I headed to get my Starbucks fix. We were seated a row apart on the plane, and every now and then he’s smile and wave. When the flight landed, he was right next to me at baggage claim, asking which bag was mine and then whether or not I was married. The scamp! His parents just smiled at me when I looked over at them. Finally, while I was waiting to be picked up outside the airport, he and his family passed me, and he said, “bye, Bella!!! I hope we see you in Hawaii!” Too cute! Now if only he was about 30 years older.

I had a major NSV as I took my window seat on the plane. Not only was I not spilling over into my neighbor’s seat, but I had lots of room with the seatbelt! On my last flight in 2008, when I was nowhere near my heaviest weight (in fact I’d just lost about 50 pounds because of that medically supervised fasting diet), I needed an extender. And when I went to put the tray table down, I was so scrunched that it wouldn’t sit flat. Not this time!!! This time, I had tons of room, and was like any other normal person. I could even move up & down the aisle of the plane, passing other people, with ease. Only someone who has been obese can understand the silent triumph I felt as each of these realizations hit me.

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The flight itself was amazing! I’d never flown Alaskan Airlines before, but definitely will again. The staff was friendly, the service was quick, and we we’re ahead of schedule the entire time. Not to mention the complimentary Mai Tai! I was seated next to a really friendly woman who was just chatty enough, but also respected my desire to read. At baggage claim my bag was among the first ten off the conveyer. And from there, I walked outside and within 15 minutes, my friend was picking me up to take me back to the house.

The house itself is awesome! It’s a little, hidden bungalow with this amazing view backyard view. First, let’s take a look at the inside: the living room, the kitchen, and the wall of windows…

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As nice and comfortable as the house is, the backyard and dock is by far the best feature of this place. Every time I see that dock, I’m reminded of the dock that Gatsby looks at in the distance, towards the green light at Daisy’s house.

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The view of the house from the private dock

The view of the house from the private dock

It rained a bit in the afternoon, but even that was so refreshing.  Hawaii is so humid, and the rain brings relief from that.  Plus, I love hearing the way it sounds against the dock.  I sat on the back porch and read as it rained, and it was so soothing, especially after a long flight.

One other “feature” of this place is ALL the stairs that lead to the street level.  There are three full sets of stairs that are fairly steep.  Yesterday I used them to get a workout in. No matter how much I may indulge on this vacation, I think I’m going to leave with my booty in better shape than it was when I got here.

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I went to Safeway to get some food for the week, and I can definitely see what they mean about how expensive things are.  I bought yogurt, salads, Flat Out wraps, salami, deli turkey, Laughing Cow cheese wedges, cottage cheese, strawberries, granola, coffee creamer, and some Boom Chicka Pop popcorn and the bill totaled $101! Needless to say, I’m going to eat as many meals at home/pack my lunch as often as I can.  I do plan to go out for sushi and maybe one other meal.

Once I got back from grocery shopping, I spent the afternoon lazing around – napping, reading, and feeling amazingly lucky that I’m able to spend this week here in what is truly paradise.  I stayed home last night, took a shower that let me wash off the day and made me feel like a new person, and just enjoyed a quiet night.

10154938_10151946586235426_644419868_n If yesterday is any indication, this is going to be an amazing vacation!

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Happy Monday! The weekend flew by.  I proctored the SAT on Saturday, got a much-needed pedi with my sister, and went to dinner with my parents.  Sunday I had the March Madness 5K, where I got a new PR!!!  Not to mention, we lost an hour of sleep while we gained another hour of daylight.  A good tradeoff, I’d say.

For the month of March, FMM is moving locations.  Sarah over at Losing Weight and Having Fun is hosting FMM for the time being, and I’m excited to discover her blog and meet a bunch of new bloggers.

If you’ve taken part in FMM then you know the rules. If you’re new, please take a moment to answer this week’s question on your own blog then add your link in the comments section at: Losing Weight and Having Fun so we can all see your FMM questions and answers. Please invite your blog readers to add their links here too so everyone has to opportunity to be seen. The idea is to connect with other awesome bloggers so take a moment to post your own FMM post and comment on a couple of other posts. Now it’s time for this week’s topic!

FMM: Let’s Talk Vacations

1. Where was the last place you went on vacation to?

Gosh, it’s been forever since I’ve been on a vacation.  The last one was in 2008 when I went to Boston and Connecticut for my friend’s wedding.  It was my first time in that area, and I absolutely loved it.

An example of the amazing architecture found all over Boston.

An example of the amazing architecture found all over Boston.

2. Do you have any plans for a vacation this year?

Yes!  I’m going to Hawaii – Oahu, specifically, and I cannot wait!!  The last time I went to Hawaii was 25 years ago, for my high school graduation trip. This trip is going to be special because it’s my first time going on vacation by myself.  I’m really excited to explore Oahu – I am definitely going snorkeling, hiking Diamond Head, and swimming in the ocean, but if any of you have tips for any other must-do activities, please let me know in the comments.

3. If money was no option, where would you dream vacation be?

Hawaii is definitely the type of vacation I love – beach, sun, and ocean.  I guess a dream vacation would be to Australia, Fiji, or another exotic beach destination.

4. What is your favorite vacation spot that you have visited?

I can honestly say that I’ve enjoyed every vacation I’ve ever taken  – Jamaica, the East Coast, Chicago, Miami, but my all-time favorite vacation was when my sister and I went to Italy for one month.  It was the summer after my credential program and after she’d received her undergrad degree.  We started in Milan and went all the way down to Sicily, exploring the cities and towns by taking in their art, shopping districts, restaurants, and museums.  We got lost, discovered unknown places, and even had a few evenings of fun flirtations with Italian guys our age.  We stayed in hotels that were barely above the level of a youth hostel, and made our way through the country thanks to my sister’s Italian major (she can speak fluently).  It was amazing seeing the country where our family was from!  I really hope to return someday.

5. Have you ever had a staycation?

Yes.  Almost every break I get from school turns in to a staycation.  Lots of times I use the time off to try new fitness classes, but since I live in the San Francisco Bay Area, there are lots of local places that I love visiting too – San Francisco, Half Moon Bay, Santa Cruz, Carmel, Monterey, Muir Woods, etc.

6. Are you a lie on the beach person or a go out and explore person?

I like doing both.  If I want to really learn more about a city the go and explore is the best.  But if I’m in need of a relaxing vacation, I’m all about the beach.  If there’s a way to do a bit of both in one vacation, all the better.

7. When you fly do you have a favorite airline?

I don’t really fly enough to have a favorite airline.  I’ve heard great things about Alaskan, which I’m taking to Hawaii.  The thing I’m looking forward to about my upcoming flight is that I won’t need a seatbelt extender and I will fit in the seat without spilling over into my neighbor’s personal space.

8. Have you ever had a ‘vacation from hell’ ?

Nope, and I hope I never do.

9. Have you ever had an airline lose your luggage?

Again, not to jinx anything, but no, I haven’t.

10. Do you send postcards to friends and family when you go on vacation?

I sent postcards when I went to Italy, but I won’t from Hawaii.  Do people still send postcards in this age of FB and Instagram?

Now it’s your turn to answer the questions!   And also be sure to go back to Sarah’s blog and leave a link to your FMM post in the comments!  I really encourage you to comment on as many people’s posts as you can – I’ve met some fantastic people through FMM.  You never know who you’ll meet today.

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A bit of an interesting situation has cropped up, and I’d love to get your opinions about what you think I should do or what you’d do in my situation.

A friend of mine is house sitting in Hawaii (Oahu’s North Shore) and I’d made tentative plans to visit her there during my Spring Break (April 4-10). Because she’d be working during the day, I knew I’d be spending that time alone, and I was fine with that. I saw days stretched out before me of sunbathing, reading, running along the ocean, exploring the city, shopping, snorkeling, and maybe even trying to surf. And then in the late afternoons and at night, we’d spend the time together going out to restaurants/bars, cooking at home, and just catching up. It was the perfect plan because I’d have time to myself to do what I wanted, but then we’d also have time together to hang out.

Yesterday when I was checking flights and confirming that it was still a good time for me to visit, she told me that she and her boyfriend are actually planning to go on a vacation that same week and she won’t be there. (He’s a doctor in the armed forces and is getting deployed shortly afterward). I was completely disappointed when she told me. I was really looking forward to the trip, especially because I would be able to stay at a place like this:

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Isn’t that beautiful? I love the private dock that goes out to the water. Amazing!

But back to the dilemma. My friend said I can still stay at the house she’s house sitting at, but since she’s not going to be there at all, I’m not sure if I want to go on vacation like that by myself. I know I’d be fine with occupying my time during the day – I was planning to do that anyway – but it’s the nighttime by myself that I’m unsure of. I don’t want to feel lonely while I’m on vacation. I know Hawaiians are friendly people, and I think it’s a safe place, and as outgoing as I am, do I really want to go out and about by myself at night the entire time?

I’m also not sure if I want to spend the money to fly to Hawaii ($600 or so right now), rent a car ($150?) and then pay for food/meals only to be by myself the entire time. Not to mention navigating around an unfamiliar city (although with all the tourists, this is probably one of the best places to be). I’ve budgeted for the trip, but that was when I was thinking I’d be spending at least the late afternoons and evenings with my friend. Do I really want to shell out this much money to be by myself? Oh, and I know some of you are going to think this is nuts, and maybe it is, but I also just found out yesterday that there’s a cat at the house that I’d have to care for. I’m not worried about scooping litter or leaving food out, but I am actually really afraid/freaked out by cats. They unnerve me. I know that sounds ridiculous to some of you, but then I’d just remind you that people are scared of spiders, and those are a lot smaller than cats. I would definitely have to find out how “friendly” this cat is – my hope would be that it would be aloof and not want to be around a stranger at all. Another reason this trip might not be for me.

Then again, it would be really fun to be in such a gorgeous setting, getting a nice tan, and just relaxing. And truth be told, I’d be by myself a majority of the time if I stayed home. It is a great deal not having to spend any money on a hotel and have the option of cooking lots of my meals at home because I’d have the comfort of a house at my disposal. I’ve never gone on vacation completely alone like this before, so it might be a good adventure.

What do you think? Should I do it? I went on Pinterest and found several photos of Oahu’s North Shore, just to make the decision even tougher.

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1. What a great week to be off of work!  I’ve spent my week off doing the perfect mix of activities – plenty of hardcore gym sessions, a few new culinary experiments, spending tons of time with friends, and reading.  The only way I could think of to top this week would have been if I’d been laying on a tropical beach somewhere.

20130222-103944.jpg 2. One of my culinary experiments was my cauliflower crust pizza.  Although my first attempt has needs some perfecting, I think I know exactly how to do just that.

3.  Yesterday I spent a fabulous day riding my bike in Half Moon Bay, and I also found this little quote, which just so happens to look strikingly similar to my beach cruiser, Lola.

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4.  I finished Gone Girl, and all I can say is if you haven’t read it – READ it!  I can’t say much more because there are lots of twists and turns that keep you shocked all the way to the final page of the novel.  My current read is another one by Gillian Flynn,

5886881 As the title implies, this one is another dark novel, and I am just as engaged by the flawed characters in this one.

5.  Finally, this morning as I was making my coffee, Sofi once again reminded me that sometimes all you need to be content is just a little spot of sun.  I love my pooch so much, and I’m glad she’s here to teach me all of these life lessons.

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Throughout the month of December, I’ll be participating in #reverb12: celebrating the successes of 2012, honoring the challenges of 2012, and planting the seeds for a rich and rewarding 2013. December is the perfect time to reflect on the year that has passed and start to manifest dreams for the new year.

Day 5 – What was your dream destination in 2012 and why?
It can be a town, city, country or region — real or imaginary — and doesn’t matter if you actually got there or not!

It’s interesting to get another question relating to travel (I related this #reverb12 post to travel the other day).  I’m going to take this as a sign from the universe that I need to pack some bags and head somewhere soon.

I’m sad to say that travel hasn’t been on the forefront of my mind lately, mostly because of budget restrictions.  I know that if I gave up some of my everyday luxuries, like my ridiculous cable bill, I could put that money toward a fabulous trip.  But the thing is, I enjoy my t.v. shows and movies too much to give them up.  It really is all about priorities.

maui2 Let’s pretend for a moment that I did have that $1700 to spend on a trip.  My first choice would be to go to Maui, Hawaii.  I’ve never been before, but every photograph I see of the island makes me long to soak up some of the slower island lifestyle along with the sun’s rays.

On a trip to Maui, I’d love to:

  • take surfing lessons
  • go on a zipline
  • attend a luau
  • take hula dancing classes on the beach (I do it here, why not there?)
  • enjoy the best sushi this side of Japan
  • read countless books while on the beach, sun bathing
  • enjoy morning yoga overlooking the ocean
  • see a live volcano from a helicopter
  • daily strolls along black sand beaches

I like the idea of a vacation where the main focus is on relaxing, but that also allows me to accomplish items on my Fitness Bucket List, too.

I may not have made it to Maui in 2012, but it will be in my sights for summer 2014, if not sooner.

maui1

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Happy Monday, Everyone! I haven’t participated in a FMM in weeks, but this one is right up my alley, since I have the entire summer off!

A quick weekend update first – I’m proud to share that this weekend I was incredibly active.  Saturday I went to a fantastic (and really sweaty!) Zumba class and then headed straight to a gentle yoga class afterward.  I plan to make this my Saturday routine through the first Saturday in August (when my yoga pass expires).  I’d burned 1576 calories before 2pm!  Saturday was also the day that I drank 17 glasses of water!  All that exercise makes me really thirsty, plus it was a HOT day, so the water went down really easy.  I also made a new recipe – grilled tofu – that was a huge hit!!  Yesterday I took a semi-rest day, but I did take Sofi for a long walk and did some housework.  The highlight was going to see Woody Allen’s new movie, To Rome With Love, which I thoroughly enjoyed.  It was all the things that make a great Woody Allen movie – highly entertaining, semi-ridiculous, quirky, hilarious, and a satire of modern society: culture and celebrity.  I loved the Italian actors in the movie, they stole the show, especially Roberto Benigni. But I thought most of the Americans were terribly miscast, except Woody Allen (naturally) and Alec Baldwin.  And of course seeing Rome, the Eternal City, was the best part of all.  It’s been 17 years since my sister and I were there, but it looks just as beautiful as I remember it.  If you enjoy the offbeat storylines that are in all Woody Allen movies, I’m sure you’ll like this one, too.

I also want to wish ScaleWarfare a very happy birthday today.  If you haven’t read her blog, go and check it out. ScaleWarfare has lost over 110 pounds, and is on her way to reaching her goal weight.  She has transformed her life as well as her body, and is such an inspiration to me.  She and I have never met in person, but she is one of my best friends in the world.  She is one of my biggest cheerleaders, and I know that I can count on her for support, advice, and friendship.  She’s the best!!

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If you’ve taken part in FMM then you know the rules. If you’re new, please take a moment to answer this week’s question on your own blog then add your link in the comments section at: www.alltheweigh.com so we can all see your FMM questions and answers. Please invite your blog readers to add their links here too so everyone has to opportunity to be seen. The idea is to connect with other awesome bloggers so take a moment to post your own FMM post and comment on a couple of other posts. Now it’s time for this week’s topic!

FMM: Summertime

1. What is your favorite thing about summer? I get two months off of work to rest, relax, and spend time doing anything I please.  Summer allows me to get back to myself and let go of the stress of the school year.  My birthday is also in the summer, so that’s a nice thing.  Summertime brings warm weather, positive attitudes, and lots of opportunities to be outside.

2. What is your favorite outdoor activity? Swimming, by far.  Although taking Sofi for a walk is right up there, as is riding my beach cruiser.

3. If you had to choose, would you prefer to be too hot or too cold? You can always put more clothes on, so too cold would be the preference.

4. Does your appetite increase or decrease during warmer months? Does it stay the same? In general, my appetite decreases because I’m out and about and more active, so I think about food/eating less.  Plus, the warm weather makes me want lighter food, so I make healthier choices.

5. What is your favorite seasonal summer fruit? This is too difficult to choose – I love all the fruits of summer.  Berries, melon, peaches, nectarines, plums – how can I choose just one?  Not to mention all the amazing veggies that are in season in the summer: zucchini, tomatoes, cucumbers, peppers – and those are just in our garden!

6. Would you prefer to spend a hot summer day at the mall or at a swimming pool? The pool, for sure!  Although Nordstrom’s Anniversary Sale is on July 20, so maybe just for that day…

7. Are you more likely to tan or sunburn? Tan.  I’m bronze May through October.

8. How does your routine change when summer begins? My routine changes completely!  I can make my own schedule, get up whenever I want to, don’t have to commute anywhere, no work, no papers to grade, no stress.  This summer I’m building my daily schedule around my workouts, which has been fun.

9. What is the temperature outside where you are today? This morning was a bit overcast and foggy, so at 9:49am, the sun is just beginning to peek out.  It’s currently 59 degrees, with an expected high of 82.  Perfect.

10.  What is your favorite summer holiday? My birthday….Oh, wait, you mean a holiday that everyone celebrates?  The 4th of July, of course!

Now it’s your turn to share. Don’t forget to go back to Kenlie’s blog to link up in the comments!

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