Friday, June 25, 2010

Blogging Haitus for a week or so

As I posted Wednesday, I am heading to a wedding for my college friend. After the wedding in western Canada's wine country, Frenchie and I are headed to my annual family vacation. I am very excited to go and spend some time away from work and with him. We are taking Beta with us and I can't wait to see how she does travelling in the car and camping. Luckily, my sister will have her dog at the campground so the two pups can play together.

Until I return... Keep reading, poling and blogging!

I will try and post some pictures if I get a chance.

Thursday, June 24, 2010

32/50: As In Eden

I received this book through a book tour that was occuring on my online book club.
I am so thankful I had the opportunity to read it and share some of my thoughts.

As in EdenAs in Eden tells the Bible stories of Adam & Eve, Lot, Lazarus, Abraham, and Pilate from the point of view of the women who were there. We see Eve living with her choice and being cast out of Eden. The birth of Cain and Abel and how their lives intertwined.

I really enjoyed the story of Martha, Lazarus' sister. Her story is used to teach us about hospitality. No one ever stops to think about how much she missed out on, and what a struggle she found it to do her duty. Care for her brother and younger sister and get little in return.

Seeing each of these story's from the woman's view was comforting. It was refreshing to see a story from the Bible told differently, but keeping the same facts. It focused more on the subplots of the story rather than the event itself in some cases.

I feel the women are so often overlooked that we miss out on how truly important they are. What role they play in order for events to occur. They were placed on a pedastool in this book and it was well deserved and well written.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Wedding Wednesday

After accumulating a few more guests than anticipated, I am happy to say the list is now done. I was freaking out last week on Frenchie because it's the last thing I wanted done before holidays and the answer was always, "I don't have time to look at it". Well, this weekend, we sat down for a total of 10 minutes and figured out who we could safely remove from the list, who we were adding, and how much it was roughly going to cost for food. (We hadn't factored in children that are free or half-price)

I'm so happy to get this check off the list!

Now I just need to get a hold of the caterer we want to do a tasting with and hopefully sign him. He's the cheapest we've found, and his references are quite impressive.

Hooray for wedding things!

On note for someone's wedding other than my own.

My friend from college is getting married this weekend!! I'm standing up as a bridesmaid for her. I'm very excited to go and be there for her. Her fiancé is a wonderful man who helped orchestrate a surprise trip last September for me to go and visit them. He's wonderful to her, and they deserve each other. Very fitting to one another.

For us it's a destination, so I will hopefully have some pictures to post after the wedding and extended vacation afterwards!

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

True Blood Love

I'm so happy the 3rd season is on! I love True Blood. I read all the Charlaine Harris Sookie Stackhouse novels. My friend recommended them and I resisted to the point where I had to read them just to get her to stop bugging me. I wish I'd listened sooner!

After last night's episode there was a Snoop Dog music video called "Oh Sookie"

Therapy Tuesday: Prolotherapy #6

Friday I had my 6th treatment.
Leading up to the treatment, Wednesday and Thursday were particularily bad days. I don't typically have a lot of pain, but for some reason, my stress levels and the weather were playing havoc on my forearm/wrist.
At my appointment I explained this to my Dr. He said that he'd hoped this was my last treatment, but I seem to be a challenging case. (My thoughts: You're working with 5 years worth of damage here...)
The solution? Up the concentration of serum. Previously, I was being injected with a 15% dextrose serum. We've not upped that to 20%. Doc seems to think that my body has gotten used to the 15% and therefore, we need to increase it to shock the immune system into healing the affected area again. To me that makes sense, since I do process things quickly. (Lightning fast metabolism)

After the higher concentration, I was in pain for most of Friday. Saturday wasn't any better. I finally decided Saturday night that enough was enough. I took an advil and woke up Sunday with a little stiffness. About the normal amount of soreness I'd have after a treatment.  I'm not sure what happened or if something went wrong, but that was a lot more pain than I'm used to after a treatment.

My next one won't be for 3 weeks now. We're seeing how I do at with that length of time. With being on holidays for a little bit of that, I'm hoping the healing process takes over and is effective. I'll be off the computer for a while, so that will certainly help things.

Monday, June 21, 2010

Manic Monday: Golf, Soccer, 4 days...

Frenchie was home this past weekend. Unfortunately I had to work Friday (not normal), but it was only so I could take this coming Friday off. Beta and Frenchie got some wonderful bonding time on Friday without me. When I left for work, they were both passed out on the bed sleeping. So cute!

Saturday Beta graduated from Agility Foundations. This class was designed for puppies to get them started in agility. They learn how to go through tunnels, go up the A-Frame, do small jumps, and run between the weave poles.  Beta is a quick learner, and it's certainly improved her fear of strange objects. I was so proud of her!
In the afternoon, Beta went to doggy daycare, so Frenchie and I could go golfing. It was a fun tournament with a bunch of people from my work. Fun times! It would have been better if my forearm wasn't as sore as it was. My prolotherapy treatment from Friday was a little worse off than normal. I had to stop golfing around the 12th hole or I'd be in a lot more pain today than I am. We had a good time and great weather.

Sunday we spent the afternoon cleaning up the yard a bit, bbq-ing and then we headed to watch Frenchie play soccer. We brought Beta with us to get her exposed to more humans. She's fabulous with other dogs, but still skittish near people. She did fairly well and ended up just laying on a blanket with me and chewing on an old frisbee.

I have a bunch of pictures from the weekend, but forgot to load my pictures off it. I promise to post some later.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Movie Review (13): A-Team

"I pity the fool!" - who thinks this movie would have any sort of deep meaning.
I've seen a lot of crummy reviews for this movie and I'm going to write the opposite. I found The A-Team thoroughly entertaining. Here's why:
  • crazy too big to be real explosions.
  • how in the world could that work scenes.
  • cheesy lines
  • cheesy fight scenes
It's A-Team for goodness sakes!

***disclaimer - Keep in mind that I have only seen the TV show once or twice. It was before my time ***

A lot of people writing reviews in the newspapers and online make the comment that Quinton 'Rampage' Jackson is no Mr. T. Well no kidding? Mr. T is Mr. T. You can't replace him. You can't pretend you are him. Who cares!? I thought Quinton did a great job at the role of BA Baracus.

I loved the fighting between Murdock and BA. It kept the humour. Faceman (played by Bradley Cooper) made the show for me. His smart-ass remarks and (lets be honest here) scenes without a shirt were thoroughly enjoyable. Frenchie even said he liked Face as a character.

I would say, if you're looking for a couple hours of entertainment, go see The A-Team. It was funny, and everything an action movie should be. No plot, lots of guns, lots of smart-ass remarks, lots of explosions.

Saturday, June 19, 2010

The Versatile Bogger

Amanda over at Amanda's Life Commentary gave me a Versatile Blogger award. Thanks!!

The guidelines for accepting this award are...

Thank the person/people who gave it you
Tell 7 things about yourself
Pass the award on to 15 bloggers, whom you have recently discovered, and think are fantastic

1. I am working towards becoming a pole dance instructor.

2. I broke my foot in high school by tripping on a pair of shoes.

3. I severly injured my computer mouse hand playing World of Warcraft and City of Heroes.
I secretly wish I could still play. I honestly miss being a super hero.

4. I used to wear thick glasses until I got my eyes lasered

5. I broke two bones in my left hand playing dodgeball.
I missed dodging the red rubber ball by an inch!

6. I converted this year to Catholicism. Easter 2010 I was confirmed.

7. I am sometimes closer to people online than I am in real life.

Friday, June 18, 2010

365 days....

365 days until I become a Mrs.!!!!
Wedding Countdown Ticker
I am so happy that the countdown can begin. Well my countdown ticker will now begin to move, which is very exciting.
When we first got engaged last August, I thought it was going to take forever to hit that year mark. It turns out that 10 months fly by really quickly!
To recap what I've done in the past 10 months here's a list of things I have checked off my list.
  • Photographer Booked
  • Ceremony site booked
  • Reception site booked
  • Bridesmaids and Groomsmen selected
  • Wedding dress ordered
  • Some bridal accessories bought
  • Centerpieces decided on and some materials purchased
  • Caterers researched; I think we have decided, but need to do a tasting
  • Colors chosen
  • Guest list almost finalized
  • Engagement photo shoot booked
It is phenomenal how much planning goes into a wedding. When we first talked about when we wanted our wedding, I had wanted to do it this year. Looking at it now, I'm glad we still have a year left. The list you see above, is a minor dent in the grand scheme of things. I am thankful that we have most of our large vendors booked already though.

31/50: The Short Second Life of Bree Tanner

The Short Second Life of Bree Tanner: An Eclipse Novella (Twilight Saga)The Short Second Life of Bree Tanner is basically a short story of the character you probably forgot even existed in the third book of the Twilight series: Eclipse. When I saw this book come out the first question in my head was "who the heck is Bree Tanner?"After having her explained to me, (I won't explain as it spoils part of Eclipse) I vaguely remembered her being a very small part in the novel. That being said, her character was very interesting.

This novella is the story of Bree from a few months after she is made vampire leading up to her final death. As a new vampire she find out things about her kind throughout the book that were previously hidden from her on purpose. Breed was created as part of an army that was to attack the Cullen family.

I'm not really sure what else to say about this book. It was very short, but it did show a different perspective to a large event that happened in Eclipse. It was very interesting to see how things were orchestrated from the other side. How these new born vampires were convinced that the Cullens were evil and needed to be destroyed.

I felt this story could have been far more in-depth, and taken a lot further. One thing that did confuse me and still bothers me, is that Bree referred to one of the Cullens as "the red-haired one". When you look at who she was referring to, the dialogue pointed to Edward. Since when did Edward Cullen have red hair??

For those that read the Twilight series, I suggest reading this one, so you get to see the other side of Eclipse in brief form. It was entertaining, a quick read, but I would try and borrow it rather than buy it. I'm happy to say I didn't spend $10 on this book and would have been a little upset if I had.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Movie Review (12): My Sister's Keeper

My Sister's Keeper  popped up on the PVR last week, so I recorded it to watch Monday night.
This is not a movie I should have watched alone. I sobbed through the last half of the movie. I could have really used a hug after it. The movie is based on the book My Sister's Keeper by Jodi Picoult.

Kate is diagnosed with Lukemia as a young child. Her parents are given the advice of their doctor that a second child, could help Kate. Anna is a petri dish baby born for this reason: To help her sister live.  When Anna turns 11, she sues her parents for medical emancipation. She wants to live her life and have choices. Kate is in need of a kidney transplant, which Anna is told she will provide, leaving her with a limited life.

I've been told that the movie ends the exact opposite of the book. I have not read the book, but I've been told the ending, and I can see why they ended the movie differently. Both are heart-wrenching, but the  book ending would be so much harder to watch.

If you watch this movie, I highly suggest watching with a friend and a box of kleenex. I thoroughly enjoyed it.
Watch the DVD                    Read the book
My Sister's Keeper        My Sister's Keeper: A Novel

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

30/50: The Bell Jar by Silvia Plath

The Bell JarThe Bell Jar made me fall asleep several times. I didn't find the writing particularily good. I realize the story is about the main character descending into depression, but I didn't get that. I found the book itself depressing, but seem to have missed what triggered her to descend. There was no climax, no excitment and not really much of an ending. I was so disappointed in this one. I was looking forward to reading it, but have been left wishing I hadn't.

The Bell Jar was a semi-autobiography of Sylvia Plath, and that made me want to read the book knowing that the character and author had similar experiences. I almost feel bad for not liking the book because it was based on some truth.

Monday, June 14, 2010

Manic Monday: City Chase and Dog Park

Calgary had an event this weekend called City Chase. It is a Canadian event that is held in several major cities across the country. I got to be a part of the Calgary leg. There were 550 teams (1100 people) that stopped at the checkpoint I was working at. That's a lot of people that left knowing pole is fitness.

Polejunkies participated in the event as a point participants could stop at for a stamp. We were responsible for teaching teams 3 moves. Once they had performed three moves, they received a shot of energy drink and off they went. It was a blast teaching people. At some points, we had 12 teams in at once, one team per pole.  I only worked 4 hours of the day event, but I was tired at the end of it. What a thrill!!

Follow this link for pictures!

On Sunday, I had a lazy day of relaxing. I needed it.  Beta and I went for a jog in the morning, which has spurred me on to take up the Couch to 5K Challenge. I'm not a horrible runner, I just can't go very far for very long. I'd rather rollerblade, bike or walk. I'm starting to realize now that with Beta, I need to learn to run. I don't trust my balance on rollerblades to take her with me yet.

After the jog, I got a phone call from Frencie's parents. They were going to stop by and take me for brunch! It was great to see them and brunch was delicious! We ended up going to see some showhomes afterwards so they could stretch their legs. It was another 6 hours home in the car for them.

When they dropped me back and the house and took off, I called up a friend for a dog park trip. She brought over her two dogs and off we went. It was so busy on a hot day. The girls ran around the large play area for quite a while and when we felt they needed a cool down, we went down to the river access. They had a good time jumping in the river cooling off. I think we ended up spending a total of an hour and half at the park. You would think Beta would be tired after that but she was awake for a good part of the evening. I took her over to the neighbours while I had a pop with them on their patio to try and tire her out some more.

Hope everyone had a wonderful weekend! We finally got some sunshine and it was finally hot out. Sadly, the forecast says rain all week :(

Sunday, June 13, 2010

29/30: Sloppy Firsts by Megan McCafferty

Sloppy Firsts: A Jessica Darling Novel
Sloppy Firsts: A Jessica Darling Novel was a stroll down memory lane for me. I completely identified with Jessica on most things. The thoughts she had, the things she said and the situations she was in were hilarious. I was laughing so hard at some points I cried. As soon as I started reading it and got about 40 pages read, I emailed my friend from high school and told her she had to read it. The characters were very believable and nothing was over the top. I found myself comparing the characters to those people I went to school with.

I would say that Jessica's character was easy for me to identify with. While I wasn't an athlete, I was definitely a smart kid and found it hard to cope with the constant backstabbing and grouping everyone found themselves put into. Jessica was with The Clueless Crew not by choice but by necessity. What other group could she belong to? Hope, her friend who moved away, was her only true friend she thought she had.  We often miss those people that are right in front of us because we've labelled them and can see past that label.

I've recommended this book to all my girlfriends. It's a must read for those that survived the grueling halls of high school.

I can't wait to read the rest of the Jessica Darling series!

Check out the rest of the series! There are 5 books in total.

Second Helpings: A Jessica Darling NovelCharmed Thirds: A Jessica Darling NovelFourth Comings: A Jessica Darling NovelPerfect Fifths: A Jessica Darling Novel (Jessica Darling Novels (Three Rivers))

Saturday, June 12, 2010

200th Post!

I had planned to do a vlog for my 200th post. I tried several times to make a video that didn't make me sound silly and stupid. I do not talk well in public. So my readers, you are out of luck. No vlogging for me.

I can't believe I've hit 200 posts! Ever since I started doing certain post days, it's ballooned into a full time blog.

I started blogging March 1, 2009. The point of the blog was to talk about fitness and guide people through my workouts and how they were going. I've gotten away from the fitness aspect a lot in the past year or so and moved on to movies, books and life in general. By getting back into pole dance and starting to teach, I feel like I am finally going back to the original idea for this blog. All those non-fitness things will still be a part of it, but I would like the focus to be better rounded.

I hope everyone who reads my blog will continue to do so. Not much will change, you still get the same ol' me. Pole dancer, book reader, movie goer, dog owner. That about sums up.

Friday, June 11, 2010

Fitness Friday: Poling in the Park

You read that title correctly. Poling in the Park.
Sunday my friend brought her Star Stand-Alone pole and set it up near the community centre hockey rink near my house. She normally plays ball hockey, so 2 hours before her game, we poled. A student of ours showed up as well which was very exciting. Hopefully the next time we have an outdoor pole jam more people will show up.

While we were setting up the stage, a man and his two kids walked by. His comment: "That's a cool portable table. Handy!" Yes, portable table.... I can see where he got the idea from since the base of the stage does look like a table top. You'd flip it over and put legs on it and voila! Table. He left before he could see what it really was.  A few teenagers walked by and looked as us funny, but no one really says a whole lot. There were a few cars drive by and you could see the drivers looking out their windows.

All in all, it was a successful pole jam. I finally got Extended Butterfly! With the heat we had that day, the pole was extra sticky so I had no issues with grip. You would think in the hot sun, the pole would be hot to the touch, but it wasn't. It got sticky as the afternoon went by, and since we weren't practicing spins, this was perfect. The base of the stage is black however, so you couldn't stand on it for very long. Since we were on the pole, you can't use sunscreen. Lotion = no grip = bad. I burned my shoulders really badly.

Here are some pics of me and Adara (our student that came)

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Tuesday Therapy: Prolotherapy #5

I'm now up to five treatments of prolotherapy.

After treatment four, I lasted a full week before I felt any pain. The level of pain was less, but still there. My wrist got very tired and started to get sore around Thursday the week right after treatment. Could have been the stress I was feeling or the weather. It was much colder out than it has been in previous weeks. I have come to find that when my hands are cold, my wrist is more susceptible to pain. This isn't something new. When you're cold your blood doesn't flow as well. Poor circulation usually means cold hands for me, and subsequently, pain. Think of a person with arthritis that notices more pain and stiffness on winter days.

I'm impressed by how much this has helped me. I feel better about doing activities. I don't feel like I have to be extra cautious (even though I should still be) when doing my workouts. I would love to go back to lifting weights, but I'm just not there yet.

A blog follower, Chowsr from Cogitation on Meditation, has gave me a link to an article that explains prolotherapy a little better than I have been.  Have a read here. One of the authors in the doctor I have been going to for treatment. I feel blessed to have found such a prominent force in the use of prolotherapy as my doctor.

Since having Treatment #5 done, I'm doing much better. The pain is no longer pain (if that makes sense). It's more a feeling of weakness. Even those weak days are fewer and farther between. I will have another treatment (#6) in a week from now. From there, treatment #7 will be 4 weeks out. It will be a test at the point to see how long I can really last without pain. So far, close to two weeks!

To assist with all the stress management, I'm still taking my B-complex and using Rescue Remedy. It's helped a little. I feel less likely to crack at anytime, but there are still a few days where I cry a lot. If after a couple more weeks I don't feel any better, my naturopath said he has something else for me to try. In the mean time, I will continue with the vitamins, the therapy, and I will now add in acupuncture.

Monday, June 7, 2010

Movie Review (11): Prince of Persia

Frenchie and I went to Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time Friday night. I had to keep reminding myself it was a Disney movie. Some of the lines were pretty cheesy. All in all the movie was entertaining. The acting was good for the script and I thoroughly enjoyed all the action sequences. I kept relating the movie action sequences to that of a video game, and rightly so. The movie is based of the game by UBI Soft. I'm a fan of game-to-movie transitions, so this was right up my alley.

Gyllenhaal did a great job as Dastan. He was believable as the innocent, framed brother. Dastan's character was carefree but smart. Although he was arrogant, he wasn't corrupted by power like his one brother and uncle. He lived through his heart rather than his head.

Sir Ben Kingsley is always fantastic no matter what his role. I found his character dark and brooding. As the uncle, serving his brother the King, and serving the King's sons, his evil demeanor fit perfectly. In every Disney movie there is a villan, and he was it, through and through.

If you're looking for a little mindless entertainment, go see this one. It was well worth it.

Friday, June 4, 2010

Fitness Friday: Stag, Hip Hold and Assisting

You might have noticed that I didn't post about pole on Tuesday.  Since I am done my conversion to being a Catholic I am making my Friday posts "Fitness Friday". Unless there is something that I really want to blog about on faith, you're more likely to get posts about fitness.

Pole on Tuesday was great. I had a set of moves in mind that I wanted to try. We added a new student to our class since it's been changed to Level 7+, or Advance Development, (AD). She seemed to get along good with us. She even attempted a few advanced moves and did pretty well!

We started with Hero. It's a move we learned a long time ago, and never really do anymore. Here is me doing the Hero pose from Christmas 2009. I haven't gotten a new photo of the move recently. Copyright to Deviant Optiks.
Looking at this photo now, I'm seeing that I need to drop my hips down a little further. (my own critique, but it's hard to know where your body is in relation to the floor when you're up there.)

Another move we learned last night was the Stag.  I have a nice bruise on the top of my foot from class this week. (Trophy!) I am not in the full blown pose in this pic. I actually should be grabbing my back foot with my hand to create a finished look. I have trouble doing a forearm hold and it's required in this move. Something to work on.

Hip Hold. I had trouble with this one. I couldn't get a grip with my armpit to create a full anchor with it. My leg was definitely sticking in the most uncomfortable spot. (think bikini line) It's the right spot for the move, however having your armpit gripping will help ease the pain and amount of pressure on the leg. I have a nice bruise on my bikini line now. I was sliding in the pic, so it's a little blurry. I definitely want to get this move and be able to put it in a combination.

On another note. I have completed my first 6 weeks of assitant teaching. I assited a level 4 class. Now I have assisting 3 classes, level 1, 6 and 5. I will be assisting a friend of mine which makes it a lot of fun. We are the exact opposite in terms of personality. We get along great and make fun of each other to no end. I hope the girls we're teaching will love it. Neither one of us are afraid to make an idiot out of ourselves if it betters the class. The classes were really fun and I love helping the girls out. The newbies all have a smile on their face when they leave, the more advanced levels leave looking beaten and worn out. Perfect!

After teaching last night, I am sore. I was already sore from my own class on Tuesday. Another 3 hours has left me wimpering. It will all be for the better in the end. The more pole I do, the stronger I become, thus, the more moves I can learn. So really, assisting is just like a workout.

Thursday, June 3, 2010

28/50: The Last Concubine

A friend of mine suggested The Last Concubine book to me. We decided to both read it.

Last ConcubineI liked this book from the get-go. I found it moved very fast at the beginning and I felt like I was missing parts of the story. Once I got a little further in, I realized it was written that way in order to get to the real story.
Sachi is a strong character. I found myself admiring her strength, courage and samauri ways. She was taught to stand up for her beliefs and it was refreshing for a female main character to do so. Bound by duty, she struggled between what she was brought up as, and her hearts desire. I found myself wishing for her to follow her heart instead of her duty.  Closer to the end of the book I found myself rolling my eyes at the clichĂ© love story. The girl has to pick between two men. I had my favorite of the two, but I won't tell you her decision.

I don't know a lot about Japan in the 1800's but I learned a lot. I had no idea there was such a large scale civil war. I love books that can teach me something I didn't know. The way the ladies of the palace lived was so interesting.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Wedding Wednesday: Reception Venue

Friday, Frenchie and I are going to put the deposit down on our reception venue. We are using a community hall. This has it's pros and cons. The biggest draw is that it costs a lot less for us to rent. We are able to decide how we want to decorate, what kind of food we want and how the room will be set up. A lot of places that include everything don't give you those sorts of options. You must use THEIR vendors and their vendors only.

One of the perks we wanted was to be able to supply out own alcohol. My future father-in-law is adament that we have an open bar, and that he will assist in buying all the liquor. We won't be getting the best of the best, but there will be a variety of things for people to drink. We will hopefully find a jar of some sort and decorate it to put on the bar. It will say "Honeymoon Fund". My sister did this at her wedding and they got a fair amount of donations.

The bad thing about a hall is that you have to go through the work of finding a caterer. We are STILL looking for someone. We've had outrageous quotes to quotes within our range. I'm lazy and haven't phoned the ones we liked. I really need to get on this. This time next year will be my wedding month!