30 Before 30: Run a Half Marathon!

America, guess what?! I did it! First (and hopefully not last) half marathon is in the books and I can check one more thing off my 30 Before 30 List. Just 26 items & 5 months to go. Yiiiiikes. Not the point! The point is I did it and it went way better than I imagined it would! The morning got off to a rocky start, with chilly, damp weather and a potentially dramatic incident involving a lost shipment of porta potties but by the time the starting gun went off at 8:30 AM it was bright, breezy and perfect weather for running. Which was a relief both athletically AND sartorially as it initially looked like I might have to do 13.1 sporting this HOT get-up.

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Thankfully that fashion faux-pas was averted and after some hemming and hawing about what sort of layering/sleeve situation I was going to go for, I made a game time decision to rock just a tank top (and bottoms, obviously) so I looked like a sexy sporty gal instead of an adult Morton Salt Girl slash homeless fisherwoman.

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Ok maybe “gangly and weirdly chipper sporty gal” would be a better descriptor but today is about CONFIDENCE not self-deprecation so let’s go with sexy. (In case you’re curious, this tank top was a gift from my BFF Maureen. In the card she said it would help me combat my STS aka “Sweaty Torso Syndrome” and she was right! What a great top. And an even better friend, one who also sent me tulips to celebrate finishing my race. She’s basically my guardian angel.)

ALSO in case you’re wondering if I yelled mid-run “Hey! Brian! Take my picture!!! While I’m running!” the answer is obviously. Do you even have to ask?

The race itself went totally superbly great. The course was perfectly flat and scenic, taking us under the Verrazano Bridge. The course sort of just looped around on itself so you ran the same path up and back, up and back, which could seem dull but worked for me – I was able to pass Brian 4 times, which helped keep me motivated and gave me something to look forward to and the flat, blank landscape of the course allowed me to completely zone out and just RUN.

At mile 4 I wanted to quit, by mile 7 I was ready to start training for a full marathon and by mile 12 I was just ready to get it over with.

So how’d I do? Awesome! My initial goal was to finish in 2 hours and I smashed that, crossing the finish line at 1:53:04. I placed 110th overall, out of 264 and 19th out of 67 finishers in my bracket of women aged 20-29. This was much better than I could have hoped for and I’m so proud of my accomplishment. I didn’t feel too bad after the race either, minus a horrific stomach ache (TMI as always, but any other runners out there deal with major gassy cramps during/post long runs?! I was dying!) and sore hips and hamstrings. We met some friends for celebratory beers & BBQ and then I passed out by 8:45 PM. It was delightful.

I’d DEFINITELY do another half marathon and would love to try to improve my time and work on pacing myself to run more smoothly and consistently. As for a full marathon? No. Not yet. Mostly I don’t want to put in that much time training and, despite the speed, pride, etc, I struggled through that 13th mile, I don’t think I’m ready to double that.

I’m mostly just surprised by how much I enjoyed this whole process. I don’t know why I decided I should run a half marathon, I just kind of got the idea in my head and decided it would be a good thing to do before I turned 30, and somewhere along the way I came to love running.  I’ve dabbled in jogging in the past, first just as a tool to stay svelte and then as something to do with Brian. He ran competitively in college and running is as much a part of his life as breathing or eating cheese or quoting Liz Lemon is to mine. When we started dating, I’d run with him because I wanted to share that with him and I wanted him to think I was a cool sporty person and sometimes I enjoyed it but other times I just got frustrated that I couldn’t keep up with him and worried I was holding him back and would get weird and dramatic – “just leave me here! This isn’t Saving Private Ryan! I know I’m slow and holding you back and I’m sorry. I never should have come with you today. I’m ruining everything!" – and that was just no fun for anybody.

When I started training for my race, I was in so-so shape. Essentially I could run the 3.4 mile loop in Prospect Park without stopping, occasionally adding on an extra mile here or there, if I was feeling particularly fit. I trained for three months, doing short runs throughout the week and one long run on weekends, adding on a mile per week. Every single week I had a one mile indicator of how much stronger I was getting. It felt awesome. I realized this morning that I could now run the 3.4 mile loop in Prospect Park 3.85 times without stopping. Boom.

Two of my cousins got into running right around the same time I did and we’ve been chatting together about how empowering it is physically pushing yourself to new levels. I usually shy away from that sort of self help-Oprah Winfrey-feelgood nonsense but I can’t help myself. I’m an empowered lady. Hear me roar! Or something.

I also realized that, in addition to empowering me (how many times will she say empowering?!), running calms me.  As you all know, I have some issues with anxiety and a, shall we say, overactive brain. Somehow when I’m in a good running rhythm, my brain just stops racing. I was telling this to a friend recently and she asked me what I think about when I run and I had to tell her I don’t know! I daydream. I sing along to songs on my phone, imagine dancing to them at my wedding or let them pull me back into nostalgic reminiscences. I mentally draft essays I never get around to writing. I focus on my breath, my feet, one step after the other.

I was in kind of a low place earlier this year, emotionally, and I’m feeling worlds away from that dark space. Yes, the weather and general passing of time have a lot to do with that, but I truly think the running did too. I know running isn’t for everyone, I wouldn’t push it on anyone, but I can not more wholeheartedly get behind anything than the importance of physical activity – whether it’s sprinting or Zumba or yogilates or powerwalking. It’s basically free Xanax! Y’all know I love TV as much as the next guy but I think all of us can and should spare a few hours of Hulu Plus per week in favor of getting those endorphins.

Ok now I’m getting a little self-righteous where I just meant to be celebratory! I think this is as good a place as any to cut the rambles. I’ll be back tomorrow with a few more words on running – a friend asked me for my advice on learning to love running, so I thought I’d share some more practical tips, now that I am super totally an expert on all things track and field.

HA!

Thank you all for your sweet encouragement and support while I trained for this little shindig and for not being too harsh on mo while I ramble about running. I know there is nothing more boring than listening to someone talk about their exercise routine (looking RIGHT AT YOU Crossfitters) so I truly appreciate you tuning in. You're all gems. Gems, I say!

 

Xo! Liz

One Awkward Hike

Monday! How was everyone’s weekend? Actually, I shouldn't mislead, it is Sunday, still, while I’m writing this. I’m on a bus back from DC and I keep coughing and sniffling and just ate a messy, enormous, smelly Italian hoagie, so I’m pretty much that disgusting person who gives public transportation a bad name. Sorrrrrry!  Also, my cellular tellular is dying and I really want to plug it in, but the plug is underneath my seat mate’s legs and she is giving off a REAL air of sour B and I already asked her once to plug in the cord to my laptop (all for this blog! For YOU!) and don’t want to bug her again because I’m a little chicken so I’m just praying she’ll get up and go to the BR or prop her legs out the window or something.

AAAAAnnnnd we just came to a complete standstill on the Jersey Turnpike. And the couple in front of me will not stop making out and petting each other’s faces. CURSE YOU, bus transport! You are ruining my life!!

Whew. What say you we cut down down on the histrionics and focus on happier times, eh? So, as I mentioned, I spent the weekend in America’s Capitol with my friend Maureen and we had a delightful visit, though we did not see either of the Obama girls, or any of the cast of Scandal. Next time!

Yesterday ...or, I guess today? I can’t keep up my own timeline. I’m going to post this on Monday, but as I’ve already established, I’m currently writing it on Sunday, so the hike was today. But when you read it will be yesterday. So confusing, this world we live in! So, let’s just say on Sunday we went for a gorgeous hike in Great Falls State Park along the Potomac River. Hiking is so fun right? I mean, it’s just walking. But with good scenery and occasional inclines, making it seem much more exciting than the average power stroll. I am a huge fan.

Not like you asked, but here are a few photos from our woodsy walk.

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B-E-Yootiful!

I don’t get out into nature nearly as much as I would like, what with living in the concrete jungle and all. There are actually quite a few hiking or camping areas relatively close to NYC and some accessible by public transportation - in my five years living here, I've taken advantage of this situation exactly one time, a tale I've been meaning to share with y’all for months!

So. This past October, the 27th, to be exact, the significance of which will be explained in just a quick moment, my friend Kathleen (who is a different person that the Maureen I went to see this weekend...all my friends are named Kathleen or Maureen or Caitlin or somesuch, Irish Catholic problems) and I decided to take a day trip up to Harriman State Park, a nature area in New Jersey, just across the NY border, accessible by the Metro North Railroad. We’d had this plan in the works for several weeks, so we went ahead and hauled upstate, despite a number of ominous factors warning us against the trip, including:

  1. A grey, cloudy day, which was a possible signifier of things to come (see no. 2)

  2. As I mentioned, it was October 27, and the Weather Channel was abuzz with warnings of a little hurricane named Sandy making its way up to the NY/NJ area in a matter of hours, ready to slam us all to smithereens.

  3. There was a murderer on the loose in the woods. No, really!

Apparently, just about a month before our planned hike, a man named Eugene Palmer shot and killed his daughter-in-law and then hightailed it into the Harriman Woods behind his home. A grizzled former park ranger, it was suspected that Palmer could still be bunkered down in those same woods. The woods we were about to hike.

Did we let any of this stop us? Offff course not.

Did we take great care to plan and prepare for our trip? Of course not, again. Kathleen and I are similar in that we’re both somehow a mix of Type A bossy planners and laissez-faire free spirits. We’re both very strong at organizing steps like, A through E of a trip or event and then just leave the rest up to chance. This works just perfectly when in low pressure situations such as “Oh, let’s meet at the west side entrance of the park at 10 AM under the oak tree….annnnddd then we’ll just lay and maybe get ice cream and play the rest of the day by ear.” This works LESS perfectly in higher pressure situations, such as this one where we spent all of our vigilant planning effort on memorizing train times and stocking up on snacks, and then got laid back about key details like printing out maps and even confirming the exact train station where we should be disembarking.

We knew the hiking area was called Harriman State Park and saw that there was a stop on the train line called Harriman, so without doing any further investigation, we foolishly assumed that was our stop – we’d pull right up to a large, clean visitor center where staffers would greet us with maps and guide us on our way. There were plenty of other peeps in hiking apparel on our train and two stops before Harriman about half of that crew got off the train. “What morons!” we exclaimed. “They don’t know what they’re doing!” At the next stop the remainder of the hikers disembarked and we still thought we knew better than they did, even as we watched them join up with an official tour guide as we pulled away from the station.

“Now arriving in Harriman!” the conductor yelled, as we pulled into a completely abandoned, open station that consisted of literally nothing more than an empty parking lot and a plexiglass rain shelter.  No visitor station. No maps. No other hikers to be seen. PRAISE BE to the lord above, we were able to access cell service out in this vast wilderness, and quickly pulled up the train schedule to see when the next locomotion would be arriving to bring us back from the direction we came – we weren’t giving up, yet, but we knew we needed to go back at least one stop. The next train would be arriving in a cool two hours, so we did what any big city girls would do and called for a taxi. We should really lead some sort of Outward Bound trip with these amazing roughing it skillz.

While we were waiting for the taxi I had some SERIOUS business to attend to in the form of urination. I had to go the whole train ride up but decided to wait and pee at the imaginary ranger station as soon as we arrived, because of course it both existed and had impeccable bathrooms. Instead we were abandoned in a parking lot with nary even a portajohn as far as the eye could see, so I went into a grass field beside the train tracks and just as I was letting it flow, a car pulled into the parking lot and I thought they might see me and choked and peed all over my jeans.

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Exhibit A.

Finally about 45 minutes later our chariot arrived and drove us the five miles back to the previous town where we found ourselves out seventeen dollars and STILL without any maps or guides. Again, this town had no ranger station or signs pointing “This Way To The Woods!” or anything even remotely indicating that it was right up against a safe, happy hiking zone, but we had seen other passengers getting off here and knew we must be slightly closer. There was a farmers market set up next to the train station, so we found some firemen manning a cupcake booth and asked them if they could direct us to the woods.

“Sure thing,” they replied, jerking a thumb towards a nearby underpass/rape tunnel. “Just head on under that highway and take your first left and there you are.” Not seeming to show ANY care for the fact that we were two single women without a map or a clue, about to head into the woods where a known murderer was hiding.

We hadn’t come this far just to go home, so under the overpass we went. I snapped this shot of us just before we went on our way, noting that it might be the last photo ever taken of us alive.

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Our “hike” brought us through a residential neighborhood where they had both amazing autumn décor:

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And punny political signs:

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Zing!

And then fiiiiinally we found ourselves in the woods. It was grey and utterly silent and full of weird creepy things like this abandoned car:

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And this broken down woodshed:hike6

There was no real change in topography,  so we just sort of meandered around this very flat, winding trail by ourselves, using faded trail markers and Kathleen’s GPS to guide the way. Again, killing it with our girl guide skills here.

There were some helpful signs along the way like this one:

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In case you don’t know what a pole is. And this one:

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Which I’m pretty sure meant “K for Killer, hiding this way!”

And this one which literally said “Killer hiding in here enter at your own risk.”

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Yeah.

But there was also a lot of beautiful autumn foliage  and cool sticks for playing Lord of the Rings.

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 "You Shall Not Pass!"

We made the most of our circumstances but it was kind of clear we were preoccupied – me with creating horrible scenarios wherein the killer would sneak out and attack us and bring us to a cave where he would kill us and eat us for sustenance and Kathleen with creating horrible scenarios wherein the skies opened up and swooped up our frail bodies into a hurricane windstorm and both of us with just figuring out where the H we were and how we were going to get out of these damn woods.

Finally our trail popped out onto a paved road and, per Kathleen’s phone, it looked like we were very close to the REAL ACTUAL visitor’s center, where we could, at the very least, get a map and a toilet and sit down to eat our lunch. Instead it turned out we were still quite far away, so we wandered through yet another residential neighborhood, sitting on someone’s front lawn to eat our packed sandwiches, narrowly avoiding being hit by passing cars. Eventually our trek brought us into a tiny town with a train station. The next train back to New York was OBVIOUSLY not coming for another three hours, so we killed some time popping into the cute local library, where they were having a dollar book sale (I bought five) and then spent the remainder of our “hike” sitting at a bar drinking beers and talking about boys. BUT it was a historical tavern AND we were on the patio, so it was still a more rustic experience than anything we would have gotten in the old Big Apple.

So basically, if this were an actual Girl Scout trip we probably would not have received our badges for Conquering The Great Outdoors or Reading The Signs of Nature but would definitely have badged in the areas of Savvy Cell Phone Use, Budget Book Buying and Inevitable  Day Drinking.

All in all, I’d call it a roaring success.

Also, out of sheer curiosity, I just looked to see if old Eugene Palmer had been found yet, and according to this Fox News article (my fave news outlet) from just one day ago, he is still believed to be alive and on the loose and is the subject of an international manhunt.

Wild stuff! Keep an eye out, friends. This guy could be anywhere. Be safe and don’t do anything I wouldn’t do… which means you should find out exactly where he is hiding and head right into his lair without a map or a plan. Good luck!

Another Awkward Week [5.3.13]

Good morning, y'all! I caught up on a lot of Nashville last night, so I'm feeling especially twangy this morning. I'm also up before the sun, because the early bird gets the worm! But worms are gross, so I'm going back to bed. Blergh, I wish. I'm in the office way sooner than I'd like to be to tackle some serious werk, but I have a golden light ahead:  I'm leaving at 1 PM this afternoon to catch a  bus down to DC to visit some pals. Hoorah! I am tres excited for a little weekend get away.

I'm also really sorry I used the word "tres."

Forgive me?

It's too early, y'all. Let's see what was keeping it awkward this week:

This Shirtsleeve:

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This weeks' addition to the What Is Liz Spilling On Herself Now files. Trying to carry a cup of water from the office kitchen while my hands were full, I put the cup in the crook of my arm, started walking, and promptly tipped the whole thing all over myself.

Soaked.

Awesome.

Use two hands kids. Or just one hand. Elbows are not the best for carrying things. The more you know!

This Tupperware:

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I always pack my lunch and lots of rando snacks and end up lugging bags and bags and bags of tupperware with me, everywhere I go. Earlier this week I was shopping in Soho (ok, it was in an Old Navy, but it was in Soho, so, ho, it counts). I had something to return and of course it was in the very bottom of my tote bag, underneath a solid layer of dirty plastic containers, so in order to present it to the clerk, I had to dig throught my gross old lunch dishes like a hoarder. You should have seen the look on the checkout gal's face when I lined up all of my tupperware on her counter one by one by one before handing her my return item and then throwing them all back in the bag.

#classy

Related: Old Navy is having some serious sales in-store and online and their spring line is pretttttty OK you guys. This is not a sponsored post, because again, I'm not that bigshot, I just really like Old Navy and want to share my joy with the world. Only the fanciest brands over here!

Women be shoppin!

Also somewhat tangentially related (can you tell I'm writing this pre caffeine?):

This Egg:

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Or one of many like it. I've been eating a lot of hard boiled eggs lately because they are easy and good and cheap and relatively healthy and my body seems to be able to digest them. I bring them to work and mix up with half an avocado and salt and pepper. It looks and sounds pretttty gross but trust me, it is delicious.

A few things about this. 1) Hardboiled eggs are extremely difficult to peel. Does anyone reading have a trick? I've tried running them under cold water as I peel (which just leaves me with a mess in the sink) and boiling with oil in the water (which just makes them slimy) but I still end up spending forever scraping off tiny little shell pieces and wasting half the egg in the process.

Tips? I'd love 'em.

Meanwhile, thing 2) I found myself on the same kitchen schedule as our office manager, every day I'd be in the tiny kitchen, in the midst of mutilating my breakfast, and she'd walk in to refresh her coffee or get a snack or whatever and just kind of give me the side eye as I made a big 'ol mess. The other morning she walked in, did her thing, and on the way out just said "You sure eat a lot of eggs."

Um, yes?

Ah! That is just one of those open ended declarative sentences like "you got a haircut" that I hate!! Like, I am noticing your behavior/appearance enough to point it out but I'm not going to share any follow up constructive criticism or information, I'm just  going to call attention to whatever it is you have going on and then walk away and leave you standing there wondering what I meant by my cryptic comment.

Do I need to worry less about what other people think about me? Probably.

Do I need to eat less eggs? Perhaps. Perhaps.

This Tableau:

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So. Last week's stuffy headedness (real word) has only gotten worse. I woke up Saturday morning with a severe, wet, chesty cough & congested nose and the whole 9 and recognized the symptoms of a sinus infection right away. Not to brag or anything, but I've had a lot of sinus infections in my lifetime, so I know the signs when I see 'em. In the past, whenever this trauma has befallen me, I've rushed to the doctors, been prescribed an antibiotic, and been cured faster than you can say post nasal drip. So! When I woke up Saturday with clear signs of the plague a mild sinus infection, I quickly looked up a nearby walk-in clinic and hoofed it over there.

The clinic was clean and quick and efficient. I waited about ten minutes before being whisked into an exam room where a doctor looked in my ears, at my throat, listened to me breathe and told me to go buy some DayQuil.

Ughhhh. Apparently it is no longer popular within the medical community to prescribe antibiotics for sinus infections, instead they encourage patients to just ride it out. Just riiiiide it out. Just surf on a wave of phlegm until they either get well or die. Which, I guess is fine? I mean, I know that overprescription of antibiotics is an issue her in 'Murica and I'm all about the natural homeopathic stuffs but I feel like the meds have always worked for me in the past! And now they won't give me my drugs! And I feel horrible, still!

Plus, after all of that - those four minutes wherein a man condescendingly told me to go to CVS and stop being such a baby, I went to check out and was slammed with a $50 co-pay. FIFTY DOLLARS! For that! I actually made the receptionist spell it out for me, I couldn't believe him. It turns out the walk in clinic was actually an urgent care facility which I guess I knew? I mean, I knew, but I didn't know what that meant. I just thought it meant like, I urgently want to stop coughing, heal me, miracle workers. But under my medical plan, urgent care appointments, which I suppose should be saved for actual near-death ailments, run $50 a pop. 50! that's half of 100! For four minutes of medical care!!! WOOF.

I know I lean kind of hard into the messier areas of my life, because they're the funniest, but I mean, on the big things, I am actually slightly more together than I allow myself to realize. I have a job. An apartment. A fancy winter coat. But one thing I really and truly do not understand or even try to fathom, is health insurance. When I got my job six years ago, I just emailed all the options to my mom and signed up for whatever she told me to. I don't know how much I'm paying, what I'm getting, I don't know what a deductible is, I pay 50 bucks for pointless appointments and the only reason is sheer laziness. I just don't make it a point to figure out. This is ... not great. I probably should hop up on that, lest I find myself in even sticker situations than this. But I don't wanntttt to! I think that's the real issue with the American health care system. They make everything so freaking complicated that everyone's either too stupid or too lazy to figure out and then they just pay millions of dollars.

GRRRRRRRRRRR. I'm mad!

Oh well. Can't win 'em all. After my appointment, I walked home through the park and decided to sit and enjoy the sun. I ended up falling asleep face down on top of my coat, like a homeless person, and scored a wicked sunburn on the back of my neck. Sexay!

Oh, also! Duh, explain the photo. While I sat in the waiting room, I was reading this book (3 out of 5 stars) about a serial killer nurse who killed dozens, maybe hundreds, of patients over the course of a few years. NOT the best doctors' office reading, my friends. I kept looking around suspiciously, trying to determine which, of any, of the staffers in the clinic was most likely to murder me. Luckily, no one did. But still! Maybe don't read books about killer nurses while on an exam table. Just...don't.

Related...

This Neti Pot:

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Are you guys into Neti Pots? They're all the rage in the allergy community. I was into it for a while but stopped after a few people died from brain microbes after neti potting with contaminated water. I got back in the trend this week, in hopes it might help with this latest ailment. A trusted source informed me that if I boiled my tap water before pouring it in my face, it would be uncontaminated and non deadly. So I've been doing that for a week or so and was feeling totally calm and relaxed until last night, when Brian casually mentioned he thought you needed to boil water for at least an hour before it is clean. I'd only been boiling for like five seconds! I'd just put water in the teapot and when it whistled, I'd turn off the heat, let it cool, and neti it it up. So OF COURSE this new scientific information sent me on a wild internet anxiety spiral.

My current google search history:

Neti pot deaths

Boiled water and neti pots, how long

Decontaminating water by boiling

Desanitizing neti pots

neti pots + dead

Brain microbes, neti pots

Symptoms of brain microbes

Someone come over here and rip this computer out of my panicked hands!!

Luckily, from what I'm reading on the web, you really only need to heat your water for 3 - 5 minutes, so I should be fine. Probably. Maybe? AAAAH!

These Ensembles:

polka dots

Ok, so this is not a fashion blog and never will be, lord knows the internet has enough of those, but I did something super dorky this week and just had to share. On Monday I got dressed in a new polka dotted top and was thinking about how I had another outfit in mind for later in the week that also involved dots and decided that I'd wear polka dots every single day this week. And so I did! (It might be hard to tell in that masterpiece of a collage I made with the help of Paintshop, but trust me. ) No one noticed, except me, but I thought it was so fun. And it helped me think about different outfits instead of my usual black skinny pants + cardigan getup. Important life issues I'm dealing with over here.

I've decided I'm going to have a sartorial theme every week. It's fun! A confessed to a friend of mine and she said it was "very spirit week." Which, yeah! Some people live every day like it's shark week. I live every day like it's spirit week.

I just think the adult world would be a lot better with more pep rallies, is all I'm saying.

Aaand that was my week. How was yours?! Do tell!

xoxo Liz Ho

As I Lay Dying, or One Awkward Home Remedy

My friends, I must ask for forgiveness if I'm missing a bit of my usual joie de vivre  this week, I am dying. Just kidding, I'm fine but I do have either the flu OR a mild case of Seasonal Affective Disorder. Or a cold. Or Dengue Fever. Or I just need to catch up on sleep. So many things are wrong with me, who even knows what's up. It's just, the last few days I have been so tired.The sleepiest of sleepy bears. All I want to do is sleep and sleep and sit on the couch and SLEEP.

The whole of last weekend I was down for the count. On Friday night, Brian and I went to bed at 10 PM. And I don't mean "went to bed," wink, high five, I mean flannel pajamas, lights out, low five, I can't lift my arm because I am sleeping went to bed. Saturday I was so low energy I could barely make it through dinner - we were at a BBQ restaurant in the Brooklyn neighborhood of Park Slope called Pork Slope and I nearly passed out in my brisket. Clearly something is amiss if I can't enjoy myself at a joint whose schtick is pork and puns.  This bout of intense lethargy and exhaustion followed me into the work week, and yesterday I went home early to try to sleep it off.

I'm really, really hoping this is just a bit of a sleepy streak and nothing more serious (the killer flu is still on the loose!) but just in case, I'm fighting disease with nature.

Something I've been weirdly into lately is homeopathic remedies. I know that's really very trendy and faddish right now, but I'm into it. I like to imagine I'm giving myself the same herbal cures that Ma Ingalls might have prescribed to the girls. Which I guess didn't really work out that well for them, Mary did go blind after all, but so be it. I'm livin' natural, my friends.  My method is no method, which is to say that I don't really follow one prescriptive theory or anything. First I just self diagnose on WebMD and then I search around for home cures for whatever aliment it is I think I've developed and try whichever ones seem most popular and/or interesting. I've been drinking a lot of apple cider vinegar. This afternoon I put hydrogen peroxide in my ears and walked around with my head sideways so it wouldn't drip out. Is any of it working? Probably not, but it makes me feel like a really hip, bad ass, disease fighting super hero.

My newest concoction is this immune boosting juice that I created by taking all of the most frequently recommended items that result from the Google search "Foods To Prevent The Flu" and whipping them up into one delightful treat.

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Hot water, lemon, honey, ginger, garlic and cayenne pepper.

It is disgusting! But in a really awesome, zesty, sinus-clearing way. It's simple to make: in my food processor I combine two peeled garlic cloves, a bit of peeled, fresh ginger, a few shakes of the cayenne and the juice from one lemon and then I crush it all up. My FP only has two functions and doesn't really liquify things, so the garlic and ginger just get kind of chunky, and then I pour into a cup of steaming water, squeeze in some honey until it becomes a really nice yellowish, brownish, snot-like color and voila. Hot, chunky garlic juice. Drink away! It is 100% unappetizing but I do feel slightly better today so who knows. Maybe it worked. Or maybe it was the 14 hours of sleep I logged. Or a combo. I'll go with combo.

Worship me, I am a healer!

And that's that. I'm sorry this isn't terribly funny, but I just knew you all were desperate for a peek into my glamorous and sexy life, so here's what's up! Sittin' on my couch, drinkin' my chunky flu juice, like a boss. YOLO.