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Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Things to do for 2012 - February update

It's the end of February already, crazy stuff.  Tomorrow is March and that means Spring is coming!  I don't  mind the cold temps, but man, I could do without the snow/slush and ice.

So, what have I done this month?

1. Take a trip to Germany - going in July!
2. Learn German - started my Rosetta Stone classes. I am now on Unit 2, with about 6 more units that I want to complete before we go to Germany.
3. Attempt a conversation, while speaking only German, with someone in Germany.
4. Continue to read, 10 books to start - I've finished 8 books so far.  I will surpass my goal of 10 books and so I'll increase it once I've hit 10.
5. Maintain the blog with regular posts - Trying. I find if I can schedule certain posts, then it makes things much easier to manage.
6. Deal with the symptoms of stopping the medication. Note, it’s nothing life threatening or anything like that, so don't worry :).
7. Continue to brush Gimli and keep up his teeth brushing - regular brushing, yes. Teeth brushing, needs work.
8. Continue to photograph Gimli and all of his antics. - Working on it.
9. Come up with a proper backup system for all my pictures.
10. Incorporate more fruits & veggies to our diet.
11. Lose 10 lbs. - I have lost 3 lbs so far and gained more muscle. I don't know if I will end up losing 10 lbs mainly because I've been at the same weight for a while, but I'm now able to fit into pants that I stopped wearing in October. (SCORE!) I am switching focus to toning my arms, back and muffin top and decreasing work on the Treadclimber to 3 days a week.
12. Evaluate and decide if I need to lose an additional 5 lbs. - We will see, I'm not married to that figure on the scale and because muscle is heavier than fat, so long as I can get back to wearing my clothes, I'm good.
13. Maintain my exercise regimen - so far, so good.
14. Paint our house - We have finally picked out our downstairs colors and are looking for a painter. Mike and I are going to paint our bathroom this weekend, so excited!
15. Frame and put up our pictures. -This will happen once we have painted.
16. Go to The Arboretum at least once a month - weather permitting - this did not happen in January, February due to the strange weather. It's been mild but very slushy and with a fluffy corgi, that translates to mucky bellies. Hoping for March!
17. Discover local restaurants/bistros etc in my city or in the surrounding areas.
18. Go to Winterlicious or Summerlicious. - looking like it's going to be Summerlicious.
19. Make a snow animal of some kind - Tried the other day, but then Gimli destroyed it. Will post on this soon.
20. Get a massage(s) at the spa. - I have a Groupon for a hot stones massage session, but I have to remember to make an appointment!
21. Take more pictures of Mike and me.
22. Return to the Church. Something is missing in my life and that might be it.
23. Enjoy our backyard.
24. Decide on the color scheme, proper design for the blog.  I've been indecisive and I just want something that's me and something where I won't want to change it in another few months - thinking of going to just plain white background and clean lines, we'll see though.
25. Surprise someone. - Surprised Mike with his Valentine's Day present, read about it here
26. Make a pie.
27. Reach out to the Rescue organization to see if there are any corgis, with a spot on its head, that need a good home with a corgi obsessed woman - E-mail sent, but nothing yet.  Would have been nice to receive some sort of response saying, "I got your email, no corgis yet", sort of thing.
New 27. Reach out to Gimli's breeder to put ourselves on the list for corgi #2.
28. Get some professional pictures done of Mike, Gimli and I. - I have a Groupon for this too, so I'll have to make an appointment!
29. On that note, Boudoir Photography!
30. Plant some flowers in the front and back yards to bring in some color.
31. Zombie walk.
32. The B&B in Niagara Falls, this one is also for you Mike, still waiting :P.
33. Photography course.
34. Kick Mike in the butt when he starts to waver on certain things.
35. Move off of "Medium" on the drums in Rock Band and to "Hard".
36. Start cooking more Trinidad type food.
37. Spend less time on the computer in my non-working hours.  I'd rather fall asleep with a book in my hand than be sleepy sitting at the computer and unable/unwilling to leave it. -I'm getting better at this, but not as fast as I'd like.
38. Go to bed earlier.
39. Do the Dog Jog again with Gimli - signed up!
40. Work on Gimli's recall at the Dog Park.
41.  Take Gimli to the play class at Bold Canine - looking like Spring/Summer
42. Work on Gimli's possessiveness.
43. Work on Gimli's listening skills when guests arrive.
44. Take Gimli for a herding instinct test?
45. Complete the Minas Tirith 3D puzzle - thinking of starting this in March
46. A Mini Cooper?
47. Head back to Las Vegas - going in September
48. Go to Disneyland and California Adventure -going in September

Wordless Wednesday - Shake your booty

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Can't wait for Spring!

Even though this winter has been quite mild in Southern Ontario, I'm really looking forward to the Spring/Summer.

Can't wait to sit out on the patio

Go exploring

Play fetch

Sit back and let Mike take Gimli for a walk for a change

What are you looking forward to?

Monday, February 27, 2012

Operation schrumpfen Check-in #7

So now we come to the end of another month.

I'm definitely seeing changes. My legs are stronger, they don't hurt when I run up and down the stairs multiple times or when I use them to help me close the Lazy Boy recliner. My spare tire is almost gone and my waist-to-hips are not as lumpy as before.

I'm starting to like the way I look in sweaters and tops again. My muffin top is slowly shrinking and it feels great! I'm less self conscious about it and I know in just a few months it will be mostly gone. I'm really looking forward to purchasing a new bikini.

Let's compare some numbers shall we?

Measurements as of February 27th:
Weight: 131 lbs

Circumference under ribs: 28.5

Circumference at belly button: 31.5

Circumference at hips: 34

Circumference of thigh: 21.6

Measurements as of February 6th:

Weight: 132

Circumference under ribs: 29

Circumference at belly button: 32

Circumference at hips: 35

Circumference of thigh: 22

Measurements as of January 9th:

Weight: 133

Circumference under bust: 29 - adjusted to measure under the ribcage, not at the ribcage.

Circumference at belly button: 34

Circumference at hips: 37

Circumference of thigh: 23

Goals for March:
- Maintain 30 minutes on the  TreadClimber at least 3 times a week.
- Develop a toning regimen for my arms, back and stomach.  This I will also do 3 times a week.

Yo Ho Yo Ho a Pirate's Life for a corgi?

Yo ho, yo ho, a pirate's life for a corgi
We frap, we pilfer, we filch and sack.
Eat up me 'earties, yo ho.
Maraud and embezzle and even highjack.
Eat up me 'earties, yo ho.

(second verse of the song).

I don't know about you, but I really feel of all the dogs, a corgi is the best choice for a pirate.

- They all seem to like adventuring and exploring
- They will fight, if prodded
- They make the most pirate-y sounding noises
- They have a 'what's in it for me' and 'me first' attitude
- They will rob you blind, mostly of food, and then quickly cover up the evidence

Friday, February 24, 2012

Guest Post by Mike

Hi everyone.... this is Candy’s husband Mike.

You may remember me from such great posts as:
·         5 things going on in our house at the moment
·         This is what happens when you live with 2 boys
·         Participate in a 5k – Done
·         Because I'm an awesome wife!

Just to name a few, well here I am doing a guest post. I don’t do much in the social media side of things, apart from FB and even in that I don’t post as much as Candy does. With a dog like Gimli one can never run out of great things to post about. Mind you I just got on Twitter OI_Mike13 in case you want to follow me.

The reason for this post is to express my undying love for my wife. She is truly the single greatest thing that has ever happened to me was meeting her and ultimately marrying her. We share so many things in common, and at times it really is scary just how we think so much alike, and yet we are very different people personality wise.

She is the headstrong, no nonsense, give me all the facts type of person (Sagittarius). Where I am, more the free thinker, throw chance to the wind and see where life takes you (Pieces). As you can see, there are great situations where we would butt heads on many occasions, but we have found one way or another to find a common balance in our life’s conflicts.

I have never seen a woman who cares so much about me, my health and welfare that she threatens me with pain and suffering if I don’t do something about a problem. Talk about tough love J

I can honestly say; that without her I would be a bit lost in life, and would never have experienced so many crazy adventures with her as we have over the past 10+ years. To think we have just started on those adventures and we have so many more planned, that every day I tell her that I love her.

This all leads me up to one thing that she did over Valentine’s Day, mind you it was a little late, but who’s really counting LOL I’m a man, and it really is about her isn’t it. Needless to say, she did something that truly wasn’t expected and came out of right field (Because I like to be different and not have it come out of Left)

She made up a deck of playing cards and on each of them she proceeded to write down 52 reasons on why she loves me. (See Pics)

All I can say was that I was taken back that she did this for me, and just how unexpected it truly was.
I don’t think I can put it in words just how that made me feel, and how much it really touched me.

So I won’t try to go on and on trying to, but just say that it really touched me, and I Love her so much.

Candy, Thank You!

Love Mike.

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

5 things going on in our house at the moment

1. I've given up chocolate for Lent - meaning M&Ms, chocolate bars, Ferrero Rocher, that sort of thing.  God give me strength and Lord Gimli send me some too!

2. On the weekend, Gimli went outside with his Wubba, you know, my favorite toy because it doesn't squeak anymore, and he left it outside.  He knows the word Wubba and when we ask him about it, he runs to the sliding glass door and looks outside.  However, when he goes outside to use the bathroom, he runs past it and doesn't bring it inside.  It's official, he's as lazy as I am.

3. I'm starting to see strange things and dream that my house is haunted.  It's official, cabin fever has probably set in.

4. As part of Mike's surgery, this claw like stretcher was put over his eyelids to keep them open and out of the path of the laser.  As a result, he has these creepy reddish spots on his eyes and he keeps grossing me out by showing them to me.

5. If a wall in our house is not painted soon, I'm going to lose my mind.  Sort of like that Simpsons Treehouse of Horror episode where they spoof The Shining and Homer goes insane.  I've started rambling to myself, "White walls, no paint, make Candy something something".  I totally feel like that lady in The Yellow Wallpaper...

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Monday, February 20, 2012

Gimli's visit to the Saratoga Springs Resort

Our stay at Walt Disney World last fall was unexpected and spur of the moment.  As such, we ended up staying at 3 different resorts - Saratoga Springs, Animal Kingdom Lodge and Coronado Springs.

Saratoga Springs was our first stop and I'm a little sorry to say that I won't be back to this resort.  We didn't have as much fun here as we have had at other resorts, such as the Grand Floridian, Bay Lake Tower or Port Orleans - French Quarter.

We were placed in The Carousel, which is the first section after you enter from the main road.

1. There is really only one restaurant and it's small.  As DVC members, we were afforded a room with a kitchenette and had we been able to purchase some breakfast items, would have gladly eaten breakfast in our rooms.  However, for 3 days, we ate breakfast at The Artist's Palette, which when you coincide with everyone else at the resort trying to eat at the same time, it becomes a bit crowded.

2. This restaurant is located in the Carriage House, which is the main lobby for the resort.  Because there's parking outside only for checking in guests, it became a bit of a race to arrive early for breakfast so as to secure a parking spot.  There are walking paths, but in the hot sun early in the morning, who wants to walk a good distance from their room to the restaurant?

We took a few pictures of Gimli here:

I'm back

Last week around Tuesday, my chest started to hurt and I couldn't catch my breath, despite trying my hardest to expand my lungs. This went on for a couple days and then I started feeling strange pains in various areas of my body.

"Funny", I thought to myself, this is exactly how I felt when I was at school and would occasionally suffer through all-nighters at the end of the term.  That's when it clicked.  I was over tired. I then realized the reason my chest hurt was because I was yawning so much during the day, I was straining myself.

Last week followed Mike's eye surgery, (he's doing much better by the way and his eyes are healing well), which I imagine was the final straw and sent me into this condition.

I didn't work out at all last week, except for Gimli's walks, and I did my best to crawl into bed at a respectable hour, somewhere between 10 and 11.  I slept a bit better Tuesday night.  Wednesday morning I woke up not quite refreshed, but the breathing issues stopped.  I've been taking it easy the last few days trying to replenish my energy and sleeping patterns.

Today, I came across this article from Oprah's site: 5 Ways to Bring Yourself Back from Burnout. Looking at the five different categories, I feel I was a combination between 'Draggin' and 'Hitting the wall' as I had symptoms of both.  I've decided I'm going to take an active stand in preventing burnout because I don't want this to happen again, if I can help it.  One of my initiatives this year is to get more sleep and I have my work cut out for me.

There will be no check in this week because I didn't do much and I expect it to be mainly the same.  My hope is to be back to it again this week so I don't undo my progress thus far.  In a bit of good news, I wore my short peacoat this weekend and it wasn't as tight as when I last wore it in November.  I'm getting there, just slowly.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Happy Balentine's Day

Happy Balentine's Day!

Candy let me hab some of her ice creem in a cone.  it wuz yummy und my eyeses got so big und i wanted moare but she took it away.  meanie she is.  but i still lub her bery much.

lord gimli

Operation schrumpfen Check-in #6

My figures for this week.  Not as nice as I'd like them to be, but that's the way it is.  The past few days were just awful and I've been very tired lately due to lack of sleep so my motivation across the board went down to 0.

Weight: 132 lbs

Circumference under bust: 27.5

Circumference at belly button: 32

Circumference at hips: 35

Circumference of thigh: 22

I did achieve one of my goals, I'm now up to 30 minutes on the TreadClimber so I'll be maintaining that time moving forward.  I have sort of decided about my core training and on those days, I'll see how far I can go to stay at 30 minutes on the Treadclimber.

I've also scheduled in 2 days a week where no exercising is done, moreso for those days during the work week where you have errands to do in the evening or you're meeting up with friends etc.  On the weekend, 9 times out of 10, I put in a workout.

In terms of food, nothing much has changed.  I do put a limit on myself in terms of portion control and what I choose if we go to a restaurant.  I am finding that sometimes I'm just full and I don't eat anything else for the evening, whereas before I'd be apt to grab something later in the evening.  That being said, I do still eat "junk" like chocolate or ice cream whenever the urge hits.  I know some purists out there will say nothing of the sort, but I'm much better to be around if I'm allowed some vices every once in a while.

Friday, February 10, 2012

Advice from Dr. Gimli


Dr. Gimli heer to teach you bout what to do if you have eye surry.

Mike had eye surry dis mornin so dat he doesnt hab to wear glasses any more.

When he got home he wuz wearing dese black tings on his eyeses und Candy has to put dese water tings in his eyeses all the time.

derefore, if you have eyeses surry, pease follow dese steps:

1. stay in bed all day und sleep with black tings on your eyeses

2. stay out of the sun like a Dracula

3. always keep a cute lovable corgi close by to heel faster und to supervise

i feel your pain, member when i wore that plasticky ting when i was a puppy, this is me not laughing at you.

3a. much beter if you don't make da corgi cry becuz i, um, i mean, if he cannot be on da bed.

i am gimli, da corgi-striper

Thursday, February 9, 2012


One of the benefits of working from home, besides the fact I don't have a huge commute and can sleep in til 7 am is that I spend all of my time with Gimli.

Most days, he's off doing his own thing - arguing with toys, barking at monsters coming to kill us wearing costumes of children and the neighbors nothing, dozing and protecting my feet under the desk while there's a thunderstorm.

In the past couple months, I put his dog bed to the window so he can at least be comfy while he survey's his domain or naps.

This afternoon, he came upstairs where I promptly grabbed him for a snuggle.  He had been laying in the sun and his head, ears and neck were so nice and warm that I had to squeeze hold him close to savor the warmth and softness.  We reclined on the carpet and made growly faces to each other and, despite his protests, he let me kiss him all over his soft head and ears.  He became so very relaxed he didn't want to leave my side.

I'm so very lucky.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012


Gimli was recently groomed and his little bunny butt looks so cute!

Except, the little bugger wouldn't let me take a picture of it.

Instead I ended up with this.

Monday, February 6, 2012

Canadian Gimli

Today's selection hails from the Canadian Pavilion at Epcot.  Unfortunately, it was so blisteringly hot, we didn't take much more pictures of Gimli in his natural habitat of totem poles, Chateau Frontenac and Victoria Gardens.

We did get him in the Canadian Mickey ears, complete with the obligatory hockey sticks and puck, flag and beaver on the front.  Does the Walt Disney Company know people are wearing beavers on their hats?  ahem, moving on now.

I don't know, I like the British hat better...

Represent!  I'm a Welsh Canadian!

Operation schrumpfen Check-in #5

It's now been roughly a month of working out on the TreadClimber and I can see results.  Nothing major on the actual lbs figure, but I've lost 2 inches off of my belly button and my hips, which translates to a slightly deflated muffin top.  Score!  This is my main problem area and to see it shrinking makes me feel awesome!

My thighs have come down by an inch, which I'm not terribly worried about. At this stage, I don't want to have skeletal thighs, I'd rather have toned/muscular thighs.  Right now, they do rub together and with shorts weather coming up in a few months, I would like them to be less flabby and more shapely.

Measurements as of January 9th:

Weight: 133

Circumference under bust: 29 - adjusted to measure under the ribcage, not at the ribcage.

Circumference at belly button: 34

Circumference at hips: 37

Circumference of thigh: 23

Measurements as of February 6th:

Weight: 132

Circumference under bust: 29

Circumference at belly button: 32

Circumference at hips: 35

Circumference of thigh: 22

Goals for this month:
- Reach 30 mins on the TreadClimber.  I'm pretty sure this will happen this week, I'm at 28 mins now.
- Start including exercises for my core.  I found a neat set on Pinterest, (yes, I'm addicted!), and I intend to start using them.

- I'm thinking of alternating days for the TreadClimber and the core exercises.  Bowflex says to use the machine 3 times a week for 30 mins, but because I'll be cutting down on the days, something needs to take it's place.  I don't know, I'm waffling on this portion, but we'll see what I decide.  I might just do less TreadClimber on the days I work out my core.

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Back to the German grind

I've returned to my German lessons on Rosetta Stone and I'm feeling very good after tonight's lesson.  All along I've been picking up words and putting together short sentences, but tonight I learned more words that are actually found in my house/yard so I can roam around speaking German and pointing at things to help with remembering.

Note, I don't have the German characters in the sentences.

For example:
In our front yard: Ich habe ein klein Baum.

I have a small tree.

In our back yard: Ich habe ein gros Baum.

I have a large tree.

Gimli ist eine rot und weis Hund.

Gimli is a red and white dog.

Gimli night trage schuhe.

Gimli is not wearing shoes.

Candy trage blau Hose und blau Hemd.

Candy is wearing blue pants and a blue shirt. (I'm wearing pajamas but I haven't learned that word yet.)

Ich habe nicht Blumen.

I have no flowers.

Ich habe ein schwarz Mantel.

I have a black coat.

Ich habe sechs Eien.

I have 6 eggs.

Mike habe funf Teller.  (I cannot remember the plural of plates).

Mike has 5 plates.

Die Frau trage eine gelb Rock.

The woman wears a skirt.  Where Rock = skirt came from is beyond me!

Mike habe vier Schlussel. (I think I spelled this incorrectly).

Mike has 4 keys.

That's it for now, but I'm excited to get back to it tomorrow!  I might start talking to Gimli in German, we'll see.