December 4, 2012

My daddy

I've been away from the blog for quite awhile now but the passing of my dad has brought me back to update it with a special post on the man who made me who I am. This blog has always been a place for me to "vent" and write things that I have on my mind and I really have a lot to express recently with no particular place to express it. So here goes.

It's been two months since my dad died and I still can't fully believe that he's not here anymore. Just last Friday, I almost pulled out my phone to give him a ring. I always imagined him passing when I was older and married with children who would remember him. It's very difficult to think about my future without him in it. It's like I don't want anything new to happen to me because he won't be here to experience it with me. 

I've experienced losing both of my parents in two very different ways. My mom passed suddenly and I didn't get the opportunity to say goodbye so I was dealing with that after the fact. But I had my dad there to help me through it and to cry to, yell at, and talk with about memories of her.

I was able to spend my dad's final days with him and even though he couldn't communicate, I feel like I was able to tell him how much he meant to me. My last words to him while he was still able to communicate were "I love you" and I am so thankful I got that chance. It's pretty much all I think about.

I'm having a really hard time lately; I feel like I want to, and sometimes actually do, burst in to tears at a moment's notice. I always felt like his number one priority; like I could ask him to help me with anything and he would just do it without even batting an eye lash. Even though I have amazing friends and family, it's just not the same. I miss feeling like someone's priority.

Sometimes I feel like it's really unfair that he left me so soon. That both my parents are gone and I'm only 27. And that makes me feel guilty because I know how lucky I am to have had such wonderful parents, especially my dad, because some people don't even get that gift. But I wasn't ready for him to leave me. I just keep reminding myself that he wasn't healthy, he didn't feel good, and that's not fair to him. I'm glad he and my mom are back together in Heaven because he really was never the same after she died. But it still sucks for me.

The main reason I got the urge to write this post is because I got a whiff of leather and remembered my dad always smelled like sun-tan lotion and leather. It sounds like an odd combination but it really fit him.

"Say no to sex, drugs, and rock and roll." -Dan Dupler 11.14.46-10.3.12

June 4, 2012

My best friend's wedding

Ahoy mateys! Long time, no talk eh? I've been enjoying my time away from the blog but I wanted to share a quick recap and some pictures from my bestie's wedding this past Friday. I've been looking forward to it since she told me she was engaged in December 2010. Katie and Steve were still in grad school at the time and they wanted to have about a year after graduation to plan their wedding. And they planned an amazing one! The whole day was absolutely one of the top 10 best days ever.

The day started at 8:30am at Katie's mom's house. The weather was gorgeous all week but of course it was raining pretty hard Friday morning. All the bridesmaids got hair done and Katie, her mom, her mother-in-law and I got makeup done by a local guy. He was a hoot and added to the light, fun atmosphere. I started to have a mini-panic attack right before we left for the venue at around 1:30pm because I'm dramatic like that, but Katie was positive, funny, and chill the entire day. She actually had to calm me down in the car ride over to the venue...that's how awesome she is.

Once we got to the venue, we got busy putting on our dresses and shoes. We helped Katie in to her dress and she literally took my breath away. So elegant and classic, just like herself. It ended up clearing up a bit by the time we took pictures at 3pm but it was still overcast and a little colder than usual. Apparently overcast is like the best weather for pictures so score! She took a few by herself while the rest of us looked on and I just could not get over how freakin' gorgeous she looked! She was stunning. After we got done with our pictures it was time to relax for about an hour before the ceremony. Katie originally didn't want to see her dad until it was time to walk down the aisle but she decided about half an hour before everything started that she wanted to see him and give him his gift. I brought him up to her and he was literally speechless. She gave him a handkerchief with a very nice embroidered poem that made us all tear up. He started crying too but instead of using the hanky, he put it back in the box. Katie started laughing and told him to use it because that's what it's for! So cute.

Right before becoming a Koppes!

The ceremony was very personal and light; perfect for Katie and Steve. There was a funny moment when Steve was handed both rings and promptly dropped his on the cobblestone ground with a loud "ting!" Since I was right behind Katie, I could see a look of horror cross his face because he thought the ring would roll all the way down the aisle. He quickly recovered the rogue ring and the ceremony ended with cheers!

After the 30 minute ceremony we took some group photos and then the bridal party was released to enjoy the cocktail hour. I personally had a few drinks to tame my nerves for the maid of honor speech I was giving at the beginning of the reception. If you've never given a speech at a wedding before, it is really difficult to put in words how you feel about the couple. I've known Katie since freshman year of high school, we were college roommates all 4 years, and we've been in each other's lives for all of our best and worst moments. I didn't know exactly how to explain to the crowd just how happy I am for her and her new husband. But, I got through it without even having to look at my notes once! Boom! She and Steve both loved it and I had random people telling me how much they liked it, so I think it was a success!

The rest of the evening was spent dancing, laughing, and enjoying the company of great people. I got to see some old friends from OU that I haven't seen in awhile and it was great to have everyone together in the same place celebrating such a fantastic couple. She's such a special person to me and I am looking forward to watching her and Steve build a new life together. I'm also excited to spend more time with them since they've been busy with wedding stuff for a long time now! Let the good times roll!

May 3, 2012


Happy May everyone! I feel like I've been looking forward to May since January. There are lots of fun things happening this month that I cannot wait to get underway. One of the most important things is all the way at the end of May but every weekend from now until Katie's wedding is booked so hopefully the month will fly by!

I haven't been posting as often as usual. Some of that is due to my busy schedule, both professionally and personally, but another reason I haven't been as consistent is because I'm starting to get down on myself about my appearance, weight, all that fun stuff. I think a lot of it is because I read a few healthy-living blogs regularly and I've been comparing myself to those other women a lot more lately than ever before. I'm not sure why; it never really bothered me before and I've actually learned a lot of healthy habits from these wonderful women. However, more often than not recently, I look at their pictures and I feel inadequate as a blogger and a healthy individual. I feel like I should look like them because I do pretty much all the same things they do: exercise regularly, eat a majority of my meals healthfully (even eating most of the same foods they do), and occasionally splurging on some not-so-healthy-but-tasty treats. However, they have lean, strong, fit bodies and I....well...don't. It's not like I've gained any weight recently and I'm most certainly not "blaming" these women for anything; in fact, they are the reason I decided to start blogging in the first place. I'm just starting to doubt myself and get in a negative space that I really don't want or need to be in. Comparing myself is 100% on me obviously. So taking a step back from the blog is so I don't spiral back in to my bad habits that I've worked towards breaking for 15 months now. In reality, I will probably never look like these women just based on our body types, but reminding myself daily how "inadequate" I am isn't helping me with any of my goals, weight-associated or otherwise.

What I'm trying to say is you will probably only see sporadic posts from me until I start to feel better about myself again. I'm on the verge of tears as I write this because I feel like a failure both with blogging and weight loss but I know I need to focus more on what makes me happy right now instead of what doesn't. And right now, blogging isn't making me happy.

I appreciate those of you who read my ramblings, your comments and suggestions, and most of all your support. Hopefully if/when I start training for my full marathon this summer/fall, I'll be back at it. But for now...

Stay classy salty sweaters!

April 26, 2012

Recipes and The Fresh Prince

I've been a busy bee in the kitchen lately. I love making light meals that I can eat a good portion of without feeling too guilty (hence, my latest obsession with baked sweet potato fries.) I made this zesty lime shrimp and avocado salad a few days ago and polished off the last of it yesterday. I am a HUGE fan of this salad and can see it making a regular occurrence in my life come summertime.

I'm not so great with the picture-taking of my own...lo siento.

The weather was quite craptastic last night and when it's cold and rainy like that, I tend to stuff my face. However, I kept it (somewhat) healthy and attempted my own Chipotle corn salsa. I friggin' love this stuff but it's much cheaper to make than to buy. I ate about half of the bowl (my bad) with my love, Tostitos hint of jalapeno chips, and I can't wait to finish it off tonight. I can't tell if it's exactly like Chipotle's but it definitely hit the spot nonetheless. I'd like to do a taste-test against the real stuff some time. Who's in!??!

During this morning's workout, my ears were flooded with THIS little diddy:

Yeah, The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air theme-song is an actual song. A greatest hit even. I was/am obsessed with that show; it makes me laugh every. single. time. Yet another reason why my Childish Gambino Pandora station is my absolute favorite. I've listened to this station during every workout for the past two months and it gets better and better each time. I highly suggest it if you like upbeat music for your workouts.

The 10th anniversary of my dad's liver transplant is coming up this weekend. I can't believe it's been 10 years already. I still remember the day he told me he needed a transplant and then, a few months later, the message from the high school office that he was on his way via private transplant jet (that's a real thing) to Nebraska for surgery. More on that to come...

April 24, 2012

Intervals are back

Yesterday was one of those days. You know...the ones that start off on the wrong foot and progress into a series of annoying happenings. Before I get in to that, let me back up to Saturday's event: Katie's Columbus bridal shower!

I didn't get many pictures on my phone because I was busy playing hostess but the shower went great! I think everyone enjoyed themselves and Katie seemed to like it, so I couldn't ask for more. My biggest thing about the party was having a dessert bar serve as the party favors. Tiff was such a huge help for this, helping me bake Friday night, and we made some mighty tasty treats that I'm still dreaming of.

We had buckeyes, chocolate chip cookies, (the most incredible) brownies, and cupcakes. Everything was homemade and so so delicious, but the brownies stole the show personally.

I parked my car for the night at 5pm Sunday and when I came out to go to work at 8:30am yesterday morning, I saw this:

Grrrrrrr. I'm assigned a parking spot in a carport; however my carport is currently falling down because someone backed in to it over Easter weekend.

I park horizontally in front of the two carports because parking around me is horrendous. Well..since I park all funky, it looks like someone backed in to my car (or took a baseball bat to my mirror) and now I'm mirror-less. Balls.

There were many other obnoxious things that happened yesterday but I'd rather just skip to the only bright spot:

I haven't been doing intervals as much as I've been trying to run for distance rather than time lately. The wind was out of control last night and instead of aggrivating myself further by trying to run outdoors, I decided to try out a new interval workout. I'm so glad I did. Instead of walking at 4.5, I jogged at 5.0 for the recovery intervals. I was nervous to sprint because of my recent knee problems, but since my new shoes seem to have fixed that issue, I figured I may be up to sprinting again. And up for it I was! This went by in a flash and I felt great when I was done.

I tried a new-to-me Pinterest recipe last night as well that I'll share tomorrow. It's a good one! Here's hoping today goes faster than yesterday did.

April 19, 2012

New kicks

Howdy folks! It's been a hot minute, eh? I've been super busy with this, that and the other so the blog has been neglected. HOWEVER, I did have a few minutes to spare to fill ya'll in on something I've been meaning to do since, ahem, October. Heh.

old shoe. RIP.


New jams! I was super pumped to run in them tonight, mostly to see if new shoes would cure my recent knee pain. And guess what?! THEY DID! I even splurged and got Brooks, putting my state tax return to good use. Ballin'.

I'm very relieved that the issue was easily fixed what with my plans to run the Columbus full marathon in the fall. I'm still not 100% but I'm at like 97% as of tonight. It's been a pretty busy week and I'm waiting for things to calm down around here before I officially commit. You would think I was considering moving across the country with all the thought I've been putting in to this decision. But I really want to either do it, or not, and it's taking me some time to figure it out. So LAY OFF. Just kidding.

Tomorrow's Friday and you know what that means? Actually, you probably don't know what that means because I've never mentioned it BUT Friday is my gourmet coffee day! I try not to go to Starbucks every day of the week for several reasons, the main one being that I'm not a millionaire. However, I do like to treat myself to a venti iced skinny vanilla latte on Friday mornings when I can swing it. And it looks like a trip to 'bucks is on the agenda tomorrow morning.

Now, I'm off to work on some things for Katie's bridal shower this Saturday. Fellow bridesmaid and high school peep Kathleen and I are hosting it at Katie's parents' house and we have some fun things planned. Can't wait to tell you all about it!

April 11, 2012

Recent food faves

If you follow me on Pinterest (and if you don't, you should start),you may have noticed that I've developed a slight obsession with quinoa. There are so many ways to eat it, I want to try every single recipe I see! So far I've only eaten it for breakfast, mostly because I don't have many breakfast options right now but also because I only have enough quinoa for 3 servings. I need to stock up on this stuff pronto!

I would compare it to rice, so I know it sounds weird to eat it for breakfast, but I've just been putting almond milk over cold quinoa adding a sliced banana and raisins. It fills me up more than oatmeal and I really enjoy the sweetness of the fruit with the grainy texture of the quinoa.

I've also been eating sweet potato fries like it's my job. So easy, so yummy, so satisfying. I could eat real french fries every day but these little babies do the trick just fine.

Plus, like a sign from the heavens, I received my weekly e-newsletter and the second article was "what to eat for peak marathon performance." I shiz you not, I was just thinking this morning while showering that I will need to research different foods if I'm going to be training/completing a full because I'm not used to eating or drinking anything other than water during long runs. Talk about perfect timing!

Alright, I guess I should do some work...that money isn't going to raise itself. Have a great hump day!

April 10, 2012

Full marathon attempt numero dos

Last night's run:

I'm telling you people, get the Nike+ GPS app. It has changed my life.

So remember how I registered for the Columbus full marathon last year and ended up dropping down and completing the half instead? Well....I feel like I want to try to accomplish my full marathon goal this fall. I haven't committed 100% yet but it is something I really want to do and I feel like I need to do it now, before I lose my motivation and excitement.

yay running!
As I documented on this blog, I ran 3 half marathons last year over a span of 5 months. I loved every minute of it (well...not every single minute but the end result was totally worth it.) I signed up for the full marathon last year right after my first half last May when I was all hopped up on post-race endorphins. By the way, the endorphins after a long race like that last 2-3 least for me they do. Anyway, I was all pumped to go run 26.2 miles but then, well, you know, like, life got in the way. Summer is usually my favorite time because there are always lots of activities going on including but not limited to: fourth of July (which lasts about a week around here), happy hour, cookouts, camping, vacation, training wasn't exactly on the top of my list last year. I was a little bit burned out by September and didn't want to go above and beyond.

Journey concert > training
That being said, I've trained/completed zeroes races so far this year and I'm itching to race. I feel like I'll be more serious about devoting time to training this summer because I'm not "over it" like I was last year. If I'm going to do a full, I will absolutely need the support of TNT, which is another reason I'm not jumping in to this full speed ahead yet because I want to make sure I am completely and totally dedicated to training and raising funds. It's been awhile since I've asked people for money, so I'm hoping the time off means people are willing to donate to my efforts again. I don't necessarily need to sign up for TNT/Columbus Full until August but I'll probably make a decision soon after Katie's wedding is wrapped up. I just wanted to put my intentions out in to the universe. The first step is letting people know...right?

Thanks for listening to reading my rambling pro/con list of sorts. I'll for sure post when I make a decision!

P.S. Don't forget: GLEE is BACK tonight!!


April 9, 2012

Easter weekend

As you can imagine, this Easter weekend was filled with food, family, and fun! I had a half-day Friday and spent some time over at Jamie and Tiff's house hanging with the babe. She was wearing her newest OU hoodie!

That girl has taste :)

Saturday evening, I went back over to Jamie's to dye eggs with Tiffany. Instead of using the Paas kits, we used food coloring mixed with boiling water and vinegar. Tiff couldn't get over how easy it was using food coloring instead of the Paas little tablets. I didn't snap a pic (I was too busy eating said eggs) but they were very bright and springy, just how I like them!

While we were doing the eggs, Ella fell down outside and her dad came to the rescue. I couldn't help but snap this candid picture of them. I still can't get over the fact that my big brother is a dad!

Young $
Sunday, the main event, was spent at Jamie's (yes, again) for most of the afternoon. We had ham, cheesy potatoes, pretzel bread with cheese, and, of course, candy! Unfortunately, my dad hasn't been feeling well for about a week and ended up going to the ER because he felt pneumonia coming on. I hate when he feels sick, it makes me nervous for him, but he's so used to it by now, it's not a big deal to him. It's still a big deal to me though! He's currently in the hospital getting better so hopefully he'll be home where he belongs by tomorrow!

Finally, I managed to get my taxes done yesterday. With 6 days to spare......heh

I hope everyone enjoyed their weekends as much as I did! As I've mentioned before, holidays used to suck for me so I always feel very grateful that now my family is able to get together and enjoy each other's company.

April 5, 2012

Drink more wine

I was a busy little bee in the kitchen last night! I made that avocado egg salad and it is mighty tasty. My friend Amber wanted a review of the recipe and I give it 2 thumbs up! I ate 1/2 cup for lunch today with some shrimp but I wish I would've brought another serving. Mine didn't look that appetizing so I thought I would spare your eyeballs from pictures.

The no-bake energy bites granola made a comeback in my fridge too! I could seriously eat that stuff for breakfast, lunch and dinner.

I had to work early this morning so my workout was pushed to tonight. At this moment, I really do not feel like doing any physical activity at all, so I'm hoping I can find some motivation between now and 6pm. Fingers crossed...

Annnddd to continue with this week's theme...

A picture of my favorite girl for your viewing pleasure!

April 3, 2012

Video of Ella

Happy hump day! Who else is pumped it's already Wednesday?

So this happened at 7:40am this morning:

I cut my workout short this morning because my knee was bothering me. I planned on going home and doing some arms and abs so I left the gym about 10 minutes earlier than usual. As I'm walking towards my apartment, I see 6 police officers coming from the building next to mine. Each have on bullet-proof vests and are carrying those large pad things (I don't know what they're called but they are basically to push people out of the way if necessary.) Naturally, I was totally freaked out. Luckily, my friend Brittny lives in that building so I texted her to see what the crap is up. She called me saying she heard someone pounding on the back door of her next door neighbor. She opened up and it was a freaking U.S Marshall. I mean...what?! He asked her who lived next door, showed her a picture and asked if that person lived next to her and what her neighbors look like...the picture wasn't her neighbor but who knows who may be hiding in there! I told her it reminded me of a scene from Dog The Bounty Hunter. She's on spring break this week so I told her to call me if they come back. So much drama in the G-view!

As I mentioned yesterday, I got to spend some time with Ella last night and she was cracking me up, per usual. Instead of taking a gazillion pictures... (let's be honest, I did that too)

...I thought I'd share a video too!


So I suggest you bookmark this page and whenever you're having a bad day, take a peak here and your frown will turn upside down.

What? You mean my niece isn't the center of your universe? Well, if Ella doesn't do it for ya, take a look at this. It will FOR SURE put a smile on your face.

Stay happy, people!

Avocado egg salad

I just re-read my post from yesterday and was smiling/laughing to myself at my desk at work. I'm sure my co-workers think I need medication, and I probably do, but I just can't look at pictures of Ella and NOT smile. Even pictures of her screaming her little head off make me swoon.


I loaded up on fresh produce (and a few bags of frozen veggies for end-of-the-month blues) yesterday at the grocery, including three avocados because they were 3/$5. Now I'm trying to find ways to eat said avocados before they go bad. Guac is always my first option, as is adding some avocado chunks to a salad. But I've seen a few recipes on Pinterest about avocado egg salad that I'd like to try. I'm actually kind of really excited about it...eggs are my LIFE.

Avocado egg salad
serves 4

10 hard-boiled egg whites, diced
1/3 cup onion, diced
1/2 cup celery, diced
8 tbsp avocado, mashed
1 tbsp Dijon mustard
1 tsp paprika
1/2 tsp ground black pepper
pinch salt (optional)

In a bowl, combine eggs, onion, celery, avocado, and mustard. Stir until well mixed. Add paprika, pepper and salt; stir to combine. Leftovers can be refrigerated for 2-3 days.

I also love when recipes come with nutritional stats:

Nutrients per 1/2-cup serving: Calories: 100, Total Fat: 4.5 g, Sat. Fat: 1 g,  Carbs: 6 g, Fiber: 3 g, Sugars: 2 g, Protein: 10 g, Sodium: 300 mg, Cholesterol: 0 mg

Muy bueno.

I'm watching Ella for a bit tonight while her parents get their shop on so I may not have time to make this tonight but I'm definitely going to try it before my avocados bite the dust! <--- how's THAT for a run-on sentence?!

April 2, 2012

Funny Monday

Yo yo! Today's run looked like this:

My toenail fell off my big toe on my left foot. I'll spare you pictures but it ain't pretty. I'm hoping it will grow back(ish) in time to get painted for Katie's wedding (8 weeks! WHHHHAT!!!)

I also got to spend some time with Ella Bella today. As soon as she saw me, she grabbed my phone, jumped on my lap, and got ready to pose for pictures. Oh man, she knows me so well. She even started posing too, like a miniature diva. I'm obsessed with her.

I was surprised/loving that she started posing

Alright, time to pack up my meals for tomorrow and head to bed. G-night!