Monday, August 30, 2010

Wanted: Reading Suggestions

I love to read. Up until college I thought I hated it, but it turns out I hated being forced to read a book that I had no interest in. Don't get me wrong Uncle Tom's Cabin, Grapes of Wrath, and The Great Gatsby are all books that you should read once in your life and I hear they are incredible. I just didn't feel that way about them. I believe I would have gotten much more out of them if I had read them out of my own free will. I worry now that I have such a sour taste in my mouth for those books from high school that I will never attempt to read them again. And as of now I have no desire to. Hopefully that will change.

Because of the sour taste in my mouth for the classics, I have literally dodged that section of the bookstore. I recently tried to give it another go. I decided to start reading....wait for it....wait for it....Pride and Prejudice! Yes, you are free to gasp. I have never ever read it. Saw the movie though. Loved the movie. Probably should have read the book before the movie. Honestly I'm not hopelessly in love with the book. Call me crazy. So to get to the point of this blog...I am about to finish the book. I usually have another book in mind that I can't wait to pick up. For the first time in a long time I have no book in mind at all. I'm bookless and that is not a happy place. This is where you come in. I would LOVE to know your top favorite books and I just might possibly make your favorite my next selection.

Here is a list of my top 5 literary favs:

1. In Cold Blood by Truman Capote
2. The Devil in the White City by Erik Larson
3. On Hitler's Mountain by Irmgard A. Hunt
4. The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo by Stieg Larsson
5. The Catcher in the Rye by J.D. Salinger

Monday, August 23, 2010


So mission de-couch the potato has gone surprisingly well! I truly did not think I would be following through with trying to become more active, but indeed I have (granted this is only the second-ish week). It also helped to give myself a goal---If I make it to a size ???, then I get to have a pair of Seven jeans! Never have I ever (still love it) owned a pair of these way-too-expensive-you-could-feed-a-small-nation-and-then-have-some-left-over jeans....but hey it got my booty off the couch so I would say it's way worth it ;)

So how have I started my goal?!? Well first I went to Zumba class last Thursday. O my heavens it was hysterical and awesome all at once! I always thought myself to be talented in the dancing area....well that talent has since left me. I looked so rhythmically challenged! Thats how fun it was. I looked "special" and still had a blast. So 2 thumbs up for Zumba! I think my favorite part was watching 60-something year old women do booty dances. Seriously hy-ster-i-cal.

I cooked last night. And the meat was fully cooked...I think. I made yummy cheesy burritos and they were divine. So divine I had them again tonight. I don't think I've ever made anything divine before. Nor have I wanted to eat it again a second night. Ask's true.

I went to a BodyCombat class tonight. It's like kick boxing, only it also adds karate, taekwondo, tai chi and muay thai into the mix. I actually liked this class even better! And if you know me well you know I don't like to do anything....and I mean myself. Well it didn't bother me one bit tonight! THATS how fun the class was. Yeah for reals.

O and one more thing...Happy First Day-O-School to Em and Meg! Hope you survived the little rugrats (or big rugrats in Meg's case).

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

You can call me Queen...Workout Queen

Okay not quite yet. I have made the first step into working out madness. I....deep breath...have joined a Gym! Yes ladies and those few gents that read this blog - you read that right. I, Ashley Holden, walked into a gym and this is the conversation I had with the cute little trainer man (can you tell I like quoting convos?!?).

Mr. Trainer Man: Hi there! How can I help you?
Workout Queen: Yes I need information on your gym.
Mr. Trainer Man: Yes here you go...blah blah blah....and we wave the membership fee if you work at one of the local hospitals.
Workout Queen: Well it just so happens that I do! Sign me up!
Mr. Trainer Man: Would you like the see the facility first?
Workout Queen: No if I do I might never come back.
Mr. Trainer Man: Okay?
Workout Queen: See if I pay for it first then I HAVE to come back...get it?
Mr. Trainer Man: Interesting theory. Let me know how that works.
Workout Queen: You'll know if it works if you ever see my face in here again.
Never have I ever (I love that game) belonged to a gym. In the 4 years I attended Baylor (Sic 'Em) I went about 4 times....and the 2 years I went to OU (Boomer) I think I went maybe twice. So we're averaging a good ole gym visit once a year. Pretty productive, right? You might ask, "Well Ashley, if you have a completely capable gym at your apartment complex and it's free, then why don't you use it?!?" O silly people, do you really think I've stepped foot over there? No of course not. It is way too close to the comforts of my couch. And like you read in my conversation, if I pay for a gym then I have to use it. It's like guilting myself into working out. Pretty genius really.

This place has wonderful group classes I can take, like kick boxing, Zumba (can't wait for that one....seriously I'm giddy), Yoga, Pilates, etc. So now I just have to go. That will be the toughest part.

In no time you might just mistake me for this hot little piece of tushie

Monday, August 16, 2010

Plan B

I have my days where I have to ask myself "Am I really doing the right thing?!?" Or "Am I honestly going to be covered in mucous for the rest of my life?" I feel like 2 months into a job is a little early to be having these thoughts, but I'm going to tell myself that it's completely typical. The good days really do outweigh the bad. And the sweet patients outnumber the rotten ones. Really when I re-evaluate my life I'm quite happy doing what I'm doing. It's just those not so pleasant moments that my mind starts to wonder what my "Plan B" should be. My dream job would be to open a secondhand bookstore! Just like Meg Ryan off You've Got Mail! I have it all planned out in my head.

It would have to be on a corner in a wonderful metropolis like NYC or Chicago. It would need a cozy one-of-a-kind coffee shop where you can get all the hidden gems that you can't get at Starbucks. It would have coffee and tea and pastries. Must have the pastries! You could only have coffee to go if you brought your own mug. And you get a special discount if your mug is funny or you donate the mug. Exotic wines would also be served. Sometimes a good book just needs some good wine. It would have an outside sitting area as well as a rooftop patio. There would be many hidden nooks where people could go read, work, or study. There would be sitting areas EVERYWHERE consisting of cozy couches, oversized chairs, hammocks, bean bag chairs, etc. Nothing would match. There would be multiple wood burning fireplaces. It would have the cute little old people that consider themselves "regulars" and come to read the paper everyday. You know the kind of people that order "the usual" and you totally know what they want. Fridays and Saturdays would be special up-and-coming musician night. There would be a little stage inside and up on the patio. The patio would be lined with christmas lights. It would stay open till 1:00-2:00 in the morning for those insomniacs who do their best work at those hours. There would be paintings everywhere of neighborhood artists that want to display their work. You could buy their work of course! Gotta support the starving artists.

Maybe one day....

What would you do if you weren't doing what you're doing?!?

Maybe we can go into business together.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Mission: De-Couch the Potato

So we are officially on day 2 of de-couching the potato (a.k.a. myself). Well I'm not going to say it was a complete and utter just wasn't a complete success. It was somewhere in the middle.

Success 1:
- I got up early on Monday & Tuesday to run!

Failure 1:
- It was only twice around my apt. complex and I actually thought I might die. For real I saw the white light coming towards me.

Score : Success 1 - Failure 0

Success 2:
- I went to the grocery store (which I hate doing....the sweets aisle haunts my dreams) and bought ALL vegetables. Well practically all veggies. There were absolutely no sweets or pop in my cart. HUGE success!

Failure 2.1:
- I had to call my mom just to find White Wine Vinegar. Seriously I'm 24! I should know what and where these things are.

Failure 2.2:
- The little cashier boy had to ask me the name of one of the produce items I had picked up. I had to be honest with the young lad. Our conversation went as follows:
Lad: "Ma'am what is this? I need to ring it up, but I don't know what it is."
Me: "Ugh....yeah I don't know either. It was green so I threw it in the cart."
Lad: nervous giggle
Me: "At least we both don't know what it is!"
Lad: "Yeah, but I'm only 15...and a boy."
Me: "O okay. Let's call it parsley. I think thats green."
Lad: "Thats not parsley."

Score: Success 1 - Failure 1

Success 3.1:
- I cooked! Yes....with my new green veggies! I have this handy cooking book I picked up somewhere. It's basically a cooking for dummies type of book. I mean we're talking basics here. There is seriously a page on how to crack an egg, which might be a good one for me to read because I have never (and I'm not exaggerating here) cracked an egg without getting shell in the bowl. Thats almost a talent! So I picked out chicken salad. I mean, really how hard can that be?!?

Failure 3:
- So it kinda stunk (I was going to use suck, but my mom doesn't like that word and I know she reads this. She also doesn't like the word piss, but sometimes it just feels right). was a pretty big stink bomb. I swear I followed the directions word for word. Ruby can even testify on my behalf! Lets just say that 50% of it was mayo. Now I'm not knocking mayo, but a little bit goes a long way! I even tried to give it to Ruby and she wouldn't touch it. Come on she eats her own excrement (my mom also doesn't like when we talk about bodily I tried to clean it up a bit). Thats when you know it's bad.

Success 3.2:
- There is a silver lining in my whole dinner fiasco. I cooked the chicken completely! If you know me well enough, you know thats a BIG success! Now if I have food poisoning tomorrow I'm going to have to revoke this success point.

Score: Success 2 - Failure 1

So all-in-all my successes outweigh my failures. Hopefully tomorrow night's menu will go a bit more smoothly. Any easy meal suggestions that I can't muck up would be greatly appreciated :) I need some cooking success or I might just have to give up an hire a chef.

Sunday, August 8, 2010

My Name is Ashley and I'm a Couch Potato

I'm fully aware that I have not blogged in quite some time. I would love to say that it's because I've been so extremely busy, but that is not the case. I have turned into a couch potato and it's an addiction that is hard to quit. I come home after a long day at work, lay my stuff down and collapse onto the couch (or futon in my case). That is where I remain for the remainder of the night. It's sad really. I blame DVR (because you have to blame something other than yourself....clearly it's not your fault) because I have just too many shows that require me to watch them. The TV networks would probably take them off the air if I were to stop watching them. I'm just doing my little part for mankind. You're welcome.

In all reality I know I watch too much t.v. And in all reality I have no desire to stop. I love mind-numbing t.v. that requires absolutely no brain cells to process. A few of those little gems would be Keeping up with the Kardashians, The Real World, Real Housewives (yep all 27 of them), etc. So basically reality t.v. It's great I don't care what you say. It is getting a wee bit out of hand so I've decided to set some goals for myself to keep me from permanently planting my tushie on the couch when I get home.

They include (and are not limited to):
1. Learning how to cook
Yeah I don't know how. Get off my back.

2. Yoga
I hear it's good for the body and soul. I'll be the one to make that call.

3. Biking
Just gotta get a bike - slightly important

4. Running
Lets be honest, this probably isn't going to happen.

5. Reading
Okay I already do this, but I felt like a list of 4 things seemed lame. So I cheated and added a 5th that I already sue me.

Okay so those seem pretty do-able, right? Well we'll just have to see how these work out. Other suggestions are ALWAYS welcome. If you give me one that I use then I'll make you a special t-shirt that reads:

Partner in the "Help Ashley Get Her Booty Off the Couch Foundation"
Proud member for ____ days and counting.
Fight the addiction...move your fanny.

It has a nice ring to it. If you don't help me, I might turn into this and I don't think you can handle having that on your conscience: