Thursday, August 7, 2014

It's one of those days...

.....when you feel like nothing is going right on all sides.

I went for a run this morning and managed 5 miles in the heat and humidity. I needed it to relieve some stress and anxiety. It's nice to plug in music and tune out the chaos around me.

It's one of the reasons I look forward to solo runs because I can go at my own pace and I just have to focus on the road in front of me.

I leave for NYC on Saturday and can't wait to see my siblings. It's a much needed breather.

One thing I know is that I am responsible for my happiness.

Another thing I know is that I'm willing to listen and willing to communicate.

Silent treatments are lame. They are counter productive and it just makes the misunderstanding grow.

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

If I had to be honest..

I would have to admit I almost skipped my morning run.

The important thing is I powered through my reluctance going through the motions of putting on my clothes, tying my hair up in a pony tail, putting on sunscreen, getting a quick glass of water in, and putting on my earphones.

I got 4.8 miles done and I felt great afterwards.

The nice thing about running outdoors is you have to get home somehow so you can't just stop in the middle. I push myself to run as far away from my front door as possible while still having the energy to get my butt home.

Is anyone else a mosquito magnet? 

In the summer months, I have to put on insect repellent or avoid staying outdoors for a long period of time.  I hate the smell of insect repellent so when I exercise outdoors, I am never walking.

I keep myself moving so I avoid paying for it later.

My brother comes back from Taiwan next Saturday so I'll be in NYC for a few days meeting him at the airport and escorting him back to Tampa. I love the direct Taipei-NYC flight because I don't have to worry about my brother missing his connection.

Apparently both my sister (who got back to NYC last week from Taipei) and my brother have a lot of things for me so I will be traveling light.

I've missed them both so I'm excited to see them.

As I get older and observe other sibling dynamics, I am more grateful for my own relationship with my siblings. Yes, we fight but we're very close. We are also very loyal to each other.

My hope is that one day, our children remain close. My sister and I are already planning hypothetical family trips together.

Before I sign off, here is part 2 vlog of my sister's trip to Taipei with my brother and mom!

And here is my own vlog from our sibling Youtube channel (Changuages)..

I hope you are all having a wonderful week! It is SO humid in Florida right now. I can't wait for Fall.

Tuesday, July 22, 2014


Is anyone else a fan of checklists?

Sometimes I make lists just so I can cross things off...

I swear I have wedding checklists on 4-5 different platforms. Every online wedding place provides their member a checklist. I also have one in my bridal moleskin a friend of mine gave me after I got engaged (best gift ever!)

I check on the lists from to time to just to see if I'm on track.

Some of the major things I can cross off my list...
Venue for reception and ceremony
Caterer (comes with venue)
DJ who is also doing uplighting
Found out about Florida marriage licenses
Assembled guest list and asked for addresses
Sent Save-the-Dates
Booked photobooth
Got multiple florist/decor proposals (booking soon)
Got chair rental quotes
Went wedding dress shopping (several times....I think I found the one...I'm not sure...we'll see :)
Picked wedding party
Started wedding website (work in progress. trying to launch mid-August)
Made hotel room blocks
Narrowed down source for bridesmaids dresses
Scheduled tasting
Inquired with multiple hair/make-up professionals to check availability (will be booking soon)
Touched base with cake baker (tasting and design will be sometime in September)
Looked at wedding stationary and other paper goods 
Start planning Chinese Tea Ceremony (MOH/sister picking up a lot of things from Taiwan)
Researched rehearsal dinner venues

I remember when I first got engaged, my first thought was, "Crap. I have to plan a wedding now."

You'd think after dating for close to 8 years, I'd have some planning already out of the way but I'm a little silly. I thought it would jinx it so I didn't touch wedding planning at all.

We knew we wanted to marry at a very specific time in Florida which meant if we didn't get married beginning of 2015, we'd have to wait until 2016.

Jason was not a fan of waiting that long so I felt so much pressure to plan a wedding in a little over a year. I literally jumped right into it and looking back now, I realize it is possible. I just have to stay organized.

On that note, this is my Changuages vlog this week about my wedding planning gripe so far.

In other news, we've been having really cool mornings this morning (by Florida standards) because of the evening rain. I've taken advantage of this and gotten longer runs in all week.

3.2 yesterday (pushed my fiance about 1 mile more than he usually runs) and 4.8 today solo.

I'm hoping to get out there again tomorrow morning. 

How's the weather in your parts? 

I'm not a huge fan of summer so I can't wait until it's over. It really is my least favorite season of the year. 

Any summer fans out there? Feel free to make your case why summer is the BEST thing ever!


Wednesday, July 16, 2014

I caved.

I've been good the last few weeks with no non-fruit desserts but yesterday, I caved.

Guess what I learned you can do with cookie dough?

You can cook it in the microwave (90 seconds on 70% power) in a oven safe ramekin and you have a perfectly soft chocolate chip cookie. It tastes just like it came out of the oven - nice and warm.

It's back to being diligent again though after that small indulgence.

Gorgeous skies Tuesday morning!

I've managed morning runs all three days this week (2.4 miles, 2.4 miles and 4.8 miles).

Today's run was solo and I almost skipped it. I ran the last mile in pouring rain which was really refreshing but I had to be careful not to slip.  I was soaked when I got home but felt happy I got it done.

Strength training has been good. I used my 8 lb weights 3-4 times last week. I also mixed it in with some P90X and yoga. On top of that, I managed 17+ miles ran throughout the week.

I'm participating in a lot of wedding forums now because it's nice to be surrounded with people excited about centerpieces, colors, stationary...and it stops me from annoying my friends and family. 

I think it's like my blog where I get to talk about my healthy living habits without being super annoying. If people don't like it, they don't have to read it. 

I hope you all have a productive week! 

Here are two videos from our Youtube channels (Without a License & Changuages)

My family's first day in Japan!!!

My response to their trip & musings about hoarding :)

and last but not least, FUNNY gifs I stumbled upon this week....

Saturday, July 12, 2014

Shortest appointment ever... my wedding dress hunt continues!

Today was another wedding dress appointment at my 3rd store in the area.

I swear that my appointments are getting shorter and shorter because I know exactly what I want and don't want. It makes grabbing dresses a lot simpler and we don't waste time.

The problem is, it seems that the dresses I have written down to try aren't available even though the store carries the designer.

On one hand, it means that the style I seem to be gravitating toward isn't as popular with the general crowd. This is a good thing because I trust my taste and I don't want to wear something everyone else wears. I want something classic yet modern. It won't become dated in 30 years when my grandchildren checkout how young grandma used to be yet it's not SO trendy that I look back in horror.

I think I may have found the dress but I have to think it through. I have until August to place my order and not feel rushed. In the mean time, I have three other dresses that another store is asking to borrow from the designer coming in the next two weeks. I feel terrible if I say yes to another dress when the boutique's owner has gone through the trouble.

In the mean time, let's show some photos of my fun today shall we?

In my future house, I want a three way mirror with a pedestal in front. How amazing would that be?

My appointment was supposed to be 90 minutes but I was out of there in a little over 30. I only tried on two dresses which was disappointing since I had 7 dresses written down but the surprising thing is that the second dress I fell in love with!

I'll be analyzing the photos in the mean time while waiting for the other dresses to come in.

How is everyone else's weekend going?

Before my appointment this morning, I managed a 4.8 mile run. Jason was feeling extra tired this morning so he slept in so I went for a longer run than I planned.

It was so humid by the time my run finished and I was soaked through with sweat.

How are you guys staying active this weekend?

Thursday, July 10, 2014

Unused muscles

Strength training this week made me realize how weak certain parts of my upper body are that I never use. There's a soreness today that's not painful but constant mild soreness. This is a good thing right?

Thank you for your strength training recommendations! I was googling after reading your comments to make sure I knew what the workout was!

So far I've ran every morning this week ranging from 4.8 miles to 2.4 miles. The total right now is close to 14 miles with a few more runs scheduled this week. When I do my short runs, I do HIIT while Jason keeps a steady pace throughout. I have to keep moving because mosquitoes like me ....a lot.

I saw a rainbow this morning on my run!

I almost skipped my run this morning but Jason wanted to go so I was all ready and dressed when I woke him up. He sleepily told me he was going to sleep in.

Since I was dressed, I shrugged my shoulders and managed 3.8 miles. I took it easy today with no sprinting to rest my knees. 

I have an appointment with another bridal boutique this weekend on Saturday. I'm less anxious than before since I know almost exactly what I want. The key will be in the details since I have the overall shape nailed down.

Did you guys have an ah-hah! moment when you tried on dresses? I refuse to settle but I'm not sure if I'll know it's the one when I put it on. The funny thing is, almost every dress I put on last week I loved. 

I used photos later to compare them to see if they translated well from another point of view. Both boutiques I went to were kind enough to take photos for me and not have a problem with it. I've heard of places that don't allow you to take photos.

My sister, mom and brother are in Japan right now for a few days. I feel bad for my fiance who seems really stressed lately with work. I think we need to schedule a weekend getaway asap away from wedding planning where he gets to relax. 

Hope everyone is having a wonderful Thursday! I'm off to be productive :)

Before I sign off, I have to show you my sister's vlog to me this week and she literally had me LOLing.

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

starting to strength train

After I went dress shopping, I ended the week with picking up two 8-lb dumbbells. We've been talking about it for a while and I finally moved my butt and bought them.

Last night before I jumped in the shower, I did sets of bicep curls, tricep overhead presses and standing side raises.

I started from 10 reps, then 8 reps, then 5 reps then 3.

Jason was the one who recommended this regimen.

I spent the rest of the night pinning thing to my fit and fab board on Pinterest (follow me!) and learning other exercises I can do with my weights.

I'm excited to start. I even did a vlog yesterday about it showing my arms and shaking it around for good measure.

I'm excited to add weights into my training! I remember you guys giving me advice months ago to start weights into my regimen and it's always been on my mind. It's fantastic advice and I know if I stick with it, it'll pay off.

Let me know what kind of strength training you guys do! I'm curious how people stay lean and mean.

Tuesday's morning run was with Jason so we did our usual 2.4 miles. Since it was a shorter distance, I did HIIT for the most of it to push myself a bit harder. I was super sweaty by the time I got back but it just shows you how humid it is around these parts. Ugh. 

I want to do stretching and yoga  later today because I feel slight tightness in my legs and hips. 

I've been super motivated recently and staying productive. There are no major trips in the next few weeks so I can stay put and enjoy my routine. I'm a creature of habit so I feel the best when I'm eating home-cooked meals, sleeping in my bed and keeping a regular schedule.

I'm like my dad in that way. 

A few weeks ago, I found myself fighting the alarm. I'm back to waking up 5 minutes before my alarm goes off. That's always a sign that I'm feeling normal again.

Anyone else a creature of habit?

Before I sign off, I want to thank you guys for your comments yesterday! You always give the best feedback. Of the things I showed you, I only ended up buying the blue dress because it was really lightweight and effortless (....comfortable). The yellow dress was a pretty color but I didn't like the weird layer on top because it was a little flat and looked unfinished. 

Have a wonderful day :)
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