Friday, February 17, 2012

Fun Fact Friday

We're here to learn some other facts about Rwanda!!


I just had a friend send me some information about Rwanda and some of the things I need to know before going there. The thing that was most interesting to me was the vaccination list. It turns out that the most prominent illnesses are Malaria, Yellow Fever, Meningitis and Tuberculosis. Good news, we have vaccines for those so here is a list of all that I will need - 

This is an excerpt from the state department's website about Rwanda and vaccinations -
"There are periodic outbreaks of meningitis in Rwanda, and the meningitis vaccine is recommended if you are traveling during the dry season, May-October. Yellow fever can cause serious medical problems, but the vaccine is very effective in preventing the disease. The yellow fever vaccine is required for all travelers over 9 months of age, and travelers who cannot show proof of vaccination will not be permitted to enter Rwanda.
Tuberculosis (TB) is an increasingly serious health concern in Rwanda. For further information, please consult the CDC's information on TB.
Malaria is endemic to Rwanda. You are strongly encouraged to take prophylactic medications to prevent malaria. These should be initiated prior to entry into the endemic area. Many malaria prophylaxis medicines are not available in Rwanda and, because of possible counterfeit of antimalarial medications, these should be obtained from a reliable pharmaceutical source before arrival. Multiple outbreaks of Ebola have been reported in neighboring DRC in 2007 and Uganda in 2008, but none within Rwanda. Rabies is present throughout the country. All bites, scratches, and licks should be taken seriously and post-exposure rabies treatment sought. Pre-exposure rabies immunization is recommended for long-term travelers, and those adventure travelers who will be more than 24 hours away from reliable post-exposure treatment.
Schistosomiasis, transmitted by waterborne larvae that penetrate intact skin, presents significant risk throughout the country. All fresh water lakes in the area should be considered contaminated. You should avoid swimming or wading in Lake Kivu and all freshwater exposure.
You can find more information on vaccinations and other health precautions, on the CDC website. For information about outbreaks of infectious diseases abroad, consult the infectious diseases section of the World Health Organization (WHO) website. The WHO website also contains additional health information for travelers, including detailed country-specific health information"

The larvae eating the skin thing sounds kind of nasty, so I won't be swimming anywhere :). The biggest thing for me is just trying to figure out where to get these vaccines and how soon to do so. I'm still in the process of trying to book my stupid flight!! AAUUGGHHH 

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Girl, look at that body - I work out

As I am coming off of this very LONG workout break, I think I have finally realized what that was all about. I will say that after training for 3 half marathons (even if haphazardly) I was a little bit burnt out, but I think I also I needed to prove to myself that this wasn't some type of unhealthy addiction.

Working out for people can become unhealthy SO QUICKLY. Movement is very important and I think we all need to be moving, but when I get into the mentality of calories in, calories out, that is a dangerous place. I'm not saying that every single person that does this is unhealthy, I'm saying that for me, this is a dangerous place. So not really having any kind of routine, just working out here and there, has been good for me to re-evaluate my goals and my idea of a "healthy" lifestyle. Here are some of the things that I've learned about myself recently.

1 - I could possibly be a teeny bit ADHD 

I don't know for sure, I have not been diagnosed, but people have always asked me over the years about that. Recently, 3 different people asked me about it in one week. My thought was, why are they all asking all of the sudden? I've obviously been this way forever, but is it just more noticeable now? 

I talked to my therapist about it (one who mentioned it may be a problem) and she felt like exercise is kind of a way for me to handle that. I obviously have lots and lots of energy, and exercise helps me focus that energy into something. 

2 - My body hurts without it

I've always had this nagging hip injury and I thought that it was something that was irritated from running. I've done yoga, stretching, blah blah thinking that eventually, it'll go away because maybe it was just too tight. Then I thought, maybe it's just overuse and this little break I have from running will help. Well, actually it got worse. Since I haven't been running, my hip pain is actually worse. I think it's from being sedentary at work. I work 8-6 and my job is me sitting at a desk, banging out calls (i'm a headhunter). So, sitting at the desk all day is actually hurting my hip! And running is the cure - who know? 

3 - It actually does help me feel better about myself

I don't want to get into the mindset that I HAVE to workout because I've eaten poorly and I don't want to feel like I can't eat something if I haven't worked out. But, I do feel better about myself when I move. I think it's a combination of the endorphin high, the feeling that I accomplished something I wasn't sure I could, and yes, I burnt a few extra calories. Those are all factors that contribute me actually feeling better after working out. 

I'm glad that I have to come to the conclusion that working out is actually good for me. I have to do that stuff every once in a while just to make sure that I am actually being healthy. What I do not want to be is someone who appears as though they live a health lifestyle, but they eat "low-fat" and they say, "oh I ate a brownie today so I have to do 30 extra minutes of cardio". That works for some and that's fine, but I do not want to be a "slave" to anything, not food, not working out, nothing. So, I have now proved to myself that I am not and I'm ready to get back into the swing of things! 

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

What I'm Loving Wednesday - Blog Edition

I have found a couple of new blogs recently that I absolutely adore so I thought I would dedicate WILW to blog lovin'

Yummy new cooking blog and she actually lists out the ingredients and how much they cost. I have gotten my best recipes from blogs and Pinterest so I was excited to find this one. Her most recent recipe - 

how good does that look??

This blog has before and after projects around the house. I LOVE seeing what people do in their homes and it helps give me inspiration too. In face, there was one post that I saw that gave me an idea for my dining room!!

This is a blog about healthy living. The post for today is how to choose which herbs to grow. I am hoping to learn some new things about being a more green, healthy household. 

I found this blog from Pinterest. There were so many cute outfits so I thought I'd see where they were coming from. 

I'm sure that you've seen her stuff on Pinterest. She has some cute ideas and I love the whole country cottage decor. 

Other Pinterest finds this week 

I don't' know the source because it wasn't pinned correctly

Happy Wednesday!!!

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

A Change is Gonna Come

A couple of years ago, when I wrote my first post, I was so new to the blogging world. I didn't even realize people blogged. I had heard about a couple of blogs and thought, maybe I could use this as a tool to raise money for Cancer. I was running my second half marathon ever and trying to raise money/awareness for the American Cancer Society.

I am so excited that I started doing this because I have really enjoyed writing this blog. I don't know if that many people really read it, but it's kind of a fun way for me to write my thoughts out - it's like an online journal - that is edited so that I don't let all my crazy out :) - and it also has pictures because my private journal does not. 

The reason I mention all of this is because I'm re-evaluating my blog, how it has evolved, what else would I like to change, etc. Where do I want my blog to go? Obviously, I don't make money with this so I really can do whatever I want. A couple of thoughts - 

Design - 

Last year, I changed the name of my blog to reflect more of my personality. I am sticking with it because I think it's really the best representation of me. I am definitely a yogi - someone on a quest to become a better person and incorporate loving, spiritual principles in my life - and I am definitely southern - college football, anyone? So the name, she's a staying. 

BUT - I'd really love to change the look of this blog. I want to keep it simple so that people focus on the words vs the design, but I think it's a tad bit boring and if you know me, I love worldly things - so a bland pic  of Edisto Marsh is beautiful but not a true reflection of who I am. So, that's something I'll slowly be working on - making my blog a little livelier and a little worldlier. 

Topics - 

Obviously, I will continue talking about working out. I haven't been running as much because I got so burnt out but I have absolutely gotten to the point where I am ready to get back to it. It'll take me some time to get into a swing of things, but I miss running. It helps me clear my mind and get rid of extra energy. In my job, I sit at my desk 10 hours a day so I get a little manic sometimes. My husband is annoyed, so it's time to get out some energy!

DIY and Decor - 

Now that I actually have a house that I want to put money and time into, I will be talking a lot about at home projects. I've got so much to do and I am enjoying every minute of it. So expect more pillow and furniture painting posts!

I am definitely going to work on my photography. I don't have a fancy camera or photoshop so that makes it difficult but I'm going to try just a little harder 

Green Living - 

I actually live a fairly green lifestyle. We recycle a lot - we're starting to compost - we only eat free range eggs and free range meat, etc etc. I think that I need to focus more on this because there is so much information out there that is different - it might be nice to see how one incorporates things into their daily life - 

Food - 

Since I love baking and eating, I will definitely be talking about food a lot. 

Local Businesses - 

I love Greenville and I think we actually have a lot of really cute local businesses. I've discussed some places like Tortilla Maria, etc. I am going to continue doing that and really highlight the great things in Greenville. Since most of my readers live here, why not talk about little hidden gems. 

I am open to suggestions, so please let me know if there is anything you'd like to see!! Any design ideas - anything!!!

Our Love Story Link up

I have been reading a couple of blogs who all seemed to be linked up with From Mrs to Mama. Since today is Valentine's Day and my hubby and I are finally doing something for V-Day, I thought I'd participate!

1. How long have you and your significant other been together?

My hubby and I have been together since 2002 and we got married in 2007. 

2. How did you meet? {What's your "love" story?}

We met through mutual friends. The one thing I remember about meeting him was that I felt an instant attraction to him. Unfortunately, he thought I was kind of stupid. It wasn't until much later on that we went on our first date. 

3. If married, how long have you been married? 

We've been married since 2007. Our anniversary is June 23rd!! A lot of people were mad at us for our wedding being in late June. It was a tad bit hot. 

4. If you are married, where did you get married at? Big or small wedding? 

Our wedding was medium size, I guess. It was about 200 people and we got married in downtown Greenville. We got married and had our reception in the same place. It's an open brick building along the Reedy River. It actually used to be a coach house where coaches were built for the Revolutionary War!

5. Do you have any nick-names that you call one another? 

I don't know if you've ever seen that SNL skit with Kristin Wolf and Jason Sedakis. They're an annoying couple and he calls her babe a lot. That's what he calls me and he calls me that in the same way. 

6. Name 3 things you love most about your honey.

1. He is stable - something that I've always struggled with in my life is feeling secure and he has added that security to my life that I've needed!
2. Loving - he always tells me how beautiful I am, how much he loves me, etc. I've never been with someone who does that. At first, it was so different to me, it made me uncomfortable, but really, it makes me feel so good!
3. Sounding Board - I know that if I'm struggling with something, I can tell him about it. He listens and he gives me a reassuring voice. 

7. Tell us how he proposed? 

He took me out to Chophouse (which is a fancy restaurant - especially for a new college graduate) and proposed at dinner. 

8. Is he a flowers and teddy bear kind of guy for v-day, or strawberrieschampagne, and rose petals?

Actually, he's not any of those. We typically don't really celebrate valentine's day, but this year, we decided to go to Soby's for dinner. I bought him a present simply because I buy myself stuff all the time and he never buys anything, so I thought it'd be nice to get him something! But for Christmas, he surprised me with some beautiful earrings to match my wedding ring. 

9. Are you a sunset dinner on the beach kind of girl, or pop a movie in and relax on the couch?

I'm both. I love the time at night I have with my husband. We watch tv together by the fire and laugh about silly things. But, we've also had some beautiful dinners in neat places like Italy and Mexico. We really have fun no matter what we do.

10. Tell us one thing you'd like to do with your significant one day. If you could do anything? Go anywhere?

We both would really like to go back to Italy and spend more time there. We went on a Mediterranean cruise for our honeymoon and only spent 1 day in each place. So, we've talked about one day going back and spending some time in Italy. 

11. Tell us what you plan on doing on this Valentine's Day.

We're eating dinner at a restaurant called Soby's downtown. It's really good!! Other than that, I have to work :(

12. Are you asking for anything this Valentine's day?

I told him please don't get me anything because I always buy stuff. 

13. Give us one piece of advice of keeping a relationship strong and full of love.

The best thing I ever learned about being in a marriage is that it is my job to build him up. Even if I'm mad, or don't think he's making the best decision or I dont know if the decision is right or not, but I have a lot of fear about it, I have to trust him. I have to let him make his own mistakes and love him right through them. The best thing I can do as a wife is be there for him. 

When he started his tree business, I was so scared and I realized that I was being very hard on him as far as making demands about what he should be doing. But it was his life long dream to own his own business and this was his opportunity. When he had to make some changes within his business, I was very fearful but I knew that my job was to support him so I just told him I believed in him. I told him how smart and strong I knew he was and that he could make anything successful. When he would come home stressed out, I just tried to be an ear and give a supportive voice. He told me that my attitude during that time was a changing tone for our relationship. He said he loved me so much after that and we've grown ever since. 

So ladies, make sure you build your man up!! 

14.  Show us a picture of what love means to you.

Monday, February 13, 2012

If I won the lottery...

My husband and I like to play the game, what would we do if we won the lottery? We think of the things we'd buy, the people we'd give money to, etc etc. I think of all of the hobbies I have and how I could actually turn them into a business and finally be able to do things I love without worrying if it'd be enough to support the family. So here is a list of things I'd do if I won the lottery, which at this point is $350 million.

1. Start a breakfast place - 

My husband and I have this dream of opening this good breakfast place in Greenville. We don't really have very many places to go that are kind of nice. We have things on the very very cheap side like Waffle House, IHOP, the Clock, etc. Then we have very high end like High Cotton, the Westin, etc. The only thing that's a reasonable price is Mimi's Cafe, and it's a chain.

I don't know what we'd call it. James really wants it to be like this restaurant in Charleston, Virginia's on King.

It is mid price and has really really good food. You can get eggs/bacon, Eggs Benedict, all kinds of delicious breakfast food. They also have lunch and dinner, but anytime we go to Charleston, we always go there. 

I'd really like it to be like this place we went in Boulder, Snooze

They had these specialty pancakes, cinnabon, red velvet, etc. I got the breakfast pot pie which had a pastry, sausage gravy, eggs and hollandaise sauce - it was so good. 

We'd specialize in breakfast, and that's it. I think we'd try to have it downtown, simply because that's where all of the great restaurants are in greenville. Maybe we'd end up being successful enough to open one on Woodruff rd. Who knows!!

2. Start a bakery 

We have a really delicious bakery here, Strossner's, but we could always use another, right?? I LOVE baking and still have so much to learn, but if we won the lottery, I could go to culinary school before I opened my bakery. 

We would do things like cakes and things like that, but we would specialize in cookies, brownies and pastries. The thing that we don't have here in SC are good pastry places. When I was in Mexico and Costa Rica, they had panaderias and they had things like sweet bread and chocolate croissants and things like that. They were SO GOOD - WHY DO WE NOT HAVE MANY OF THESE IN THE US????

3. Let's pretend we hit the jackpot and won $350 million - I would open some kind of center here to help kids in need - and then maybe one in Africa too 

The place I am going, Faith Victory Association, is a community dedicated to orphans. They set up family type environments and have schools and a medical center. It would be really awesome if we had that here too. South Carolina doesn't do much to support children in need. We think that if people aren't willing to work like they do, then they're worthless but what makes me sad are the children. So, wouldn't it be awesome if we could do a community type thing that helps children in need. It could be an after school type thing with counseling, activities, ways to get involved and learn hobbies that they could possibly use later in life, a community garden, etc etc etc etc. Then maybe we could do it in Africa too. There are lots of places in need - those are just two places near and dear to my heart. 

4. Open a recovery focused gym

There are so many people that suffer from eating disorders, drug/alcohol issues/etc. I think it'd be awesome to have a gym for people to work out and get healthy, but do it with the guidance of qualified recovery therapists and work out focused people. So the purpose of these workouts would be for building confidence, learning healthy habits, the importance of taking care of yourself, therapy. This would not be a, just come here and lose weight gym. 

For me, I've realized that working out helps me to build confidence. When I challenge myself and complete a task, it helps me realize that I can do things that seems impossible. Enough of that in the gym, and I start feeling like I can take on other things. I also would have lots of yoga therapy there because I think a yoga practice can solve the world's problems! Nutritionists would be on hand to help learn healthy habits, maybe we could even have some 12 step meetings like Eating Disorders Anonymous and Overeaters Anonymous, etc. 

Oh to dream!! What we could do if we didn't have to make money!

What would you do if you won the lottery??