I'm pretty sure I said this last week, but this is officially the longest I've gone without posting.

And I think it's fair to say that I've been busy. Clay and I have softball multiple nights a week, plus I'm teaching and somehow around all of that we have to work in regular home responsibilities, working out and spending time together ... and this is all after working for 8 hours during the day.

But I hate complaining about that. I hate our culture's glorification of busy, like we're all in a deranged competition to see who can stretch themselves the thinnest. Honestly, I hate being busy. It stresses me out. Last Wednesday, I rushed home from work to gather my materials for class and as I was driving back into town to teach, I remembered that after class I had to go back home to get my clothes for the gym and then drive back to the gym and realized I wouldn't get to sit down and eat dinner until after 10 o'clock ...

... and I started to cry.

It's a stupid thing to cry about because no one feels any sympathy for you. You did this to yourself and guess what? Everyone else is doing the same thing and everyone else is just as tired. You're not special or especially overworked. You're just a normal person doing shitty, normal adult things and if anything, you're just being a bigger wuss about it.

It's also pretty fair to say that I've been feeling a little depressed over the past few months. When I was seeing a therapist a few years back, she told me that I have random bouts of depression that can oftentimes be blamed on my genetic makeup. You don't always need a reason to feel depressed, sometimes it just happens thanks to your good ol' DNA and the way your brain chemicals work. The good news is that I can normally recognize when this is happening and tell myself, "You don't have any reason to feel depressed" and pull myself out of it rather quickly.

And I can usually recognize when it's happening because I suddenly lose interest in absolutely everything but sleeping. I can't focus on anything and have zero motivation to do the things I love most ... like run and write (though I at least manage to run because I'd be be homicidal without those exercise endorphins). I also become Mrs. Cranky Pants because I'm so frustrated with myself for feeling so sad when everything's perfectly okay.

But that's not saying I haven't had any fun. I've had lots, actually.

We recently attended the Hairbanger's Ball with my dear friend Brittany and her boyfriend and learned that I am strangely attracted to middle-aged men wearing blonde wigs, pleather and purple eyeliner.


I also saw my most favorite musical again in Bloomington!


We took Clay's father to an Indianapolis Indians game as a Father's Day present on Monday night. We are a family who loves their baseball (and stadium hotdogs).



And Clay, Ashley, Chris and I got muddy for a second year a row at the Warrior Dash last weekend. It's been raining for what seems like the last month, so this year the course was EXTRA muddy. These "after" pics don't do the race justice because by this point we'd already jumped into a pond to clean off.




Better still, Clay and I are leaving tomorrow afternoon for a 4th of July road trip to Chicago with Dan and Emily. Part of our journey includes a stop at Shedd Aquarium and I don't think I could possibly be any more excited. That place holds a very special place in my heart and I'm looking forward to visiting it again. And could anything be better than fireworks on Navy Pier?

I hope you're all doing well and we'll catch up again soon. Promise.

♥C
(Please excuse the mess on my blog. As you may remember, I'm teaching a class about blogging and when discussing how to set up and design a blog, I used my own as a guinea pig and well ... there you go.)

I finished my evening run just under 2 hours ago. I waited until almost dark so I could beat the heat, but still ended up with 80 degree temperatures and 91% humidity. Yuck. Even my socks were sweaty.

But I had a great run. My stomach was (and still is) stuffed with spaghetti pie and I'm feeling utterly disgusting from my period (Sorry. That's totally TMI, but I seriously surfed out of work on a wave of hormones and tears this afternoon. I do not feel well today), but I cranked it out. Having an awesome run did not make sense today, but it happened and I'm sure as heck not gonna question it.


My first mile was my slowest (8:31) because I was still trying to convince my legs that moving wasn't going to kill them, but I picked it up for miles 2 and 3. I've been doing a lot of interval training in the last year and ditched my usual Tuesday fartleks for a tempo run. I finished mile 2 in 7:48 and mile 3 in 7:34. Not too shabby for a girl who had an emotional breakdown because her husband ate the last Fudgsicle just an hour earlier.

As usual, I have to credit my playlist for tonight's workout. Music can make or break a run for me and I listened to the same playlist I made for this past weekend's 5k.


Oh ya, I forgot to mention that I ran a 5k this weekend! This was my fourth year running in the Race for Literacy 5k and I don't know why I picked this as my 5k to do every year, but I did (maybe because I'm a huge advocate for literacy? I mean, I do love to read and write. Though judging by the number of typos and misspellings on this blog, one could argue that I'm slightly illiterate. So maybe this 5k is actually for me?!). This year's course was completely different and instead of taking us through residential neighborhoods, it weaved around the mall. Had I not been so concerned about getting a good finishing time, I probably would have stopped at Target.




I placed 1st in my age group and best of all, I had a confidence-building race. I've been feeling a little "race insecure" since the half marathon in May and doing well in this 5k (i.e. finishing it without walking or getting sick) was super important to me. I didn't psyche myself out and it's unfortunate that they don't give out medals for achieving peace of mind.

Oh, and in case you're wondering, this is spaghetti pie. It's my mother-in-law's recipe and it will change your life. Because it's pie ... made out of spaghetti:


♥C
I'm pretty sure a week is the longest I've ever gone without blogging and for that, I am ashamed.

I just haven't felt extremely motivated to write anything for myself because I'm busy writing for other people (#thehumblebrag).

And right now I'm tired, hot and hungry which means it's time to take a nap.

Only I can't take a nap because the guy who lives behind us decided that THIS moment was the perfect moment to start mowing his lawn and I can't nap when there's excess outside noise and our walls are apparently insulated with rice paper because I swear I can even hear the bunny that lives in our backyard hopping around and it makes me so angry, I just end up laying in bed completely miffed that my neighbor has the audacity to care for this lawn after working a full 8-hour day while I'm so lazy I can't even be bothered to take off my work clothes before I crawl into bed to take a power nap because I don't have the energy to live my life ... let alone try to mow my own lawn.

Grumpy. I am also grumpy.

But I did want to post a little something-something because today marks 12 years that Clayton and I have been together. 12 years ago I decided that "Yup, this is it for me. This is my person." And I have never looked back.

Of course dating anniversaries don't mean that much once you're married and can start stockpiling wedding anniversaries, but it's still a special day that should at least be recognized.

Me this morning: "Hey, we started dating exactly 12 years ago today."

Clayton: "There are 12 doughnuts in a Baker's Dozen."

Like I said, this is my person.

♥C



Hey.

What's up?

What if I started every blog post the way I start a conversation with my friends? It would be SO obnoxious:

HEY, GIRL, HEY!

It would be even worse if I started every blog post the way I start a conversation with Clayton:

WHAT'S FOR DINNER?

Anyway, I have something interesting to tell you. Firstly, the infection in my eyeball has vanished and I'm now weaning myself off the antibiotic steroid eyedrops (and I'm being overly cautious about it because the optometrist said something about how being on a steroid too long increases eye pressure and I wasn't really listening, but I'm pretty sure she meant that if I stopped taking the medicine abruptly, my eye was going to explode). 

I was told that I'm approved to "slowly" start wearing my contacts again and since I'm such an a$$hole I asked, "Does that mean I have to put my contacts in ... in slow motion?"

"I meant gradually," she said, not understanding my humor at all. 

So there's that. 

Secondly, I'm teaching another night class (because it was so successful the first time)!

But get this: I'm not teaching a class about how to be successful and a good person and other things I don't know about it, I get to teach about something I (kind of) know:

BLOGGING. 

Someone caught wind of the fact that I blog (or attempt to when I'm not sleeping or purposely doing something else) and figured I knew enough to tell other people how to do it, too. While that fact is totally debatable, I'm beyond flattered. 

And part of me can't help but feel like, "I've been keeping this blog for 6 years now, it's about time someone read it."

And the other part of me is having an anxiety attack over the thought of standing up in front of a group of people and trying to sound like I know what I'm talking about because flattered or not, I am still me. 

One of the reasons why I've had this blog for so long is because I feel like it's the only way I can truly be myself in public (if you consider this public, and I do) and I'll be the first to tell you that I am so much better behind a computer or behind a pen than I am in person. In person I'm just sweaty and prone to making awkward eye contact.

I'm great with words if I don't have to actually speak them. 

Oh man, this class is in for a real treat. 

But personal blogging is among my most favorite hobbies and I'm honestly looking forward to the opportunity to help someone else find their voice, too. 

Now if you'll excuse me, I gotta make my first lesson plan ... and it's more or less gonna be "Who votes that we conduct this class in an online chatroom so I don't have to do any public speaking and don't get sweat stains in my arm pits? Okay? Great. Bye."

♥C

Last week I wrote about my tendency to scratch my corneas when taking my contact lenses out. This week I have an eye infection that requires $70 eye drops. Apparently anything I write about comes to fruition.

So I'd like to find $10,000.

*waits*

Bacterial eye infections aside, it was a BUSY 3-day weekend.

Saturday happened to be my beloved's 29th birthday (he's finally as decrepit as me!) and it also happened to be his cousin's wedding day. So we more or less spent Clayton's birthday in the car driving 3+ hours to Valparaiso and back in one day.

But it was totally worth it because the wedding was absolutely gorgeous and his cousin Danielle was an exquisite bride. It was one of the prettiest weddings that I've ever attended and an open bar doesn't hurt anybody.

I love Danielle. She's probably one of the sweetest people on the planet and her and Ed deserve all of the happiness in the world!

I tried to make Clay's unconventional birthday as special as possible, so before waking him up bright and early for our wedding road trip, I put out his presents and a plate of special doughnuts from Rainbow Bakery.


Then we hopped in the car with Mitch and Molly and hit the road!

We drove North and went through Lafayette, a mid-sized Indiana town that has thousands of acres of giant windmills that conserve an insane amount of energy. The sight of hundreds of giant wind turbines is both fascinating and creepy.


During the hours between the wedding ceremony and reception, we did some light shopping and stopped at a restaurant in Valparaiso called the Industrial Revolution that had extremely patriotic decor as well as the most amazing pulled pork nachos ever. We tasted some local brew and took our time getting to know a new city.



We crammed a lot into one day and it was absolutely exhausting, but we always have a great time with Mitch and Molly. I feel very blessed to be close to them.

I wish this picture was better quality because it's amazing. Plus, Molly and I wore the exact same colors in our dresses because good taste obviously runs in our family. 

Sunday and Monday was more or less Clayton's birthday celebration and on Sunday afternoon we hosted his parents, Mitch and Molly, two grandmothers and an aunt for cake and ice cream. Clayton requested my chocolate cake with cookie dough icing once again, so you've all more or less seen this same cake before. It doesn't make it any less yummy, but Clayton is a creature of habit.


We spent Memorial Day with Dan and Emily and headed North once again, this time on a much shorter road trip to Indianapolis. We spent the rainy, windy day at the Indianapolis Zoo and weather conditions were perfect for active animals. I finally had the opportunity to see the orangutan exhibit, but I was so enrapt by what I was seeing, I plumb forgot to take any pics. I was face-to-face with a rather sleepy orangutan, but still couldn't be bothered to reach for my cell phone (I guess you could say I was too busy living in the moment for once). I could have stayed and watched them for hours!

But I did snap plenty of pics of other creatures. I know I posted pics of this zoo's tigers and elephants in the last year or so, but who doesn't love looking at animals you don't get to see every day? We also toured the butterfly garden which was beautiful and serene ... so long as the butterflies didn't land on you. Because then you'll get in trouble for touching the butterflies even though the butterflies were technically touching you and there's nothing you can do about it because you aren't allowed to touch them. It's all very confusing.



Guess what my favorite part of the day was?



Fact: Flamingos are actually drama queens. 


 This little guy tried to lean against the rocks to avoid the rain and he blends in quite well!




 This shark repeatedly made his rounds in the tank and loved being touched so much, 
he'd spring out of the water in an attempt to be closer to you. I did not like this. 





Clayton's arm right before he got scolded for touching a butterfly that landed on him.



And I discovered that the meerkat is my spirit animal ...


... because wait for it ...


... there.


We capped off our day in Indy with dinner at Giordano's. Clayton has been obsessed with the idea of going to this place since it opened in February and his wish finally came true! Stuffed pizza takes about 60 minutes to cook, but when you have good beer and great friends, the time flies. And the pizza? No words. Eating more than one slice of this massive beast of a pizza pie is so unnecessary, but soooooo unbelievably good.



We ordered half some kind of Meat Lovers and half Extreme Veggie. Between the four of us, we only had two pieces of pizza left and the take-home box easily weighed 5 pounds. For just two pieces!

I feel like I've rambled on forever, but that's my long weekend in a nutshell. I hope you all enjoyed your Memorial Day, too!

♥C