Oops..

I wish I had waited until only the last minute..but nope, this girl waited until the last second (basically). I don’t know why, but the pressure just wasn’t there until today, when my lunch break rolled around and I figured “hey, I should probably grab some costumes..”.

Preface: In my adult life, I have dressed up once. It was the first Halloween J and I were together and I was a bumble bee. It was cute, but slightly revealing. I know, I know….halloween has become a massive skank-fest of half-naked girls, but I wanted to play too, and I felt good rocking it. This year, I was hoping to do something equally as ‘cute’. J loves it when I dress a bit more revealing, and I can assure you it doesn’t happen often.

So, J’s friend’s from out of town are coming over tonight. I have met them only a few times..they are older (than me), and seem light-years ahead of the game. When we all decided to do something for Halloween together, it was due to her and I mutually agreeing (over a few too many drinks) we wanted to dress up for halloween this year. Last week I really started thinking about the get-together. We are adults now, that means I need to buy snacks, right? Then I realized, I bet this couple wasn’t headed to the costume store to buy pre-packaged costumes. Nope, these are the kind of people who make their costumes. A quick text revealed I was right: she was going to be a gum ball machine, and she was just about done putting her costume together from scratch.  Oh no. I am screwed.

Well, with that, the thought of answering the door dressed as a slutty red-riding hood (first thought), and having to stand next to a gum-ball machine flashed upon me. I decided I needed to tone it down a notch… It’s horrible to say, but the idea of having to be inventive, and having to dress as something unique, rather than sexy, really ruined it for me. I pushed the thought of Halloween aside. Can I blame society for the way I feel about this holiday, please? 😉

And that brings us to today.. J’s only costume request was “I don’t know,” and “something that doesn’t suck” or something along those lines.. Great, thanks for your help, BABE.

As I shopped, thoughts of panic flashed through my mind. I couldn’t decide what I was doing in there with the other crazies.. who waits until Halloween to buy their Halloween costume?!

  1. I’m not spending 100$ on two costumes.
  2. Well, I guess we’re not dressing up afterall.
  3. That’s mean, now she will be a gum-ball machine and I will be an Ashley…
  4. Okay, it’s going to be fine. Let’s just find the cheap costume section…
  5. I need to hurry. Everyone is buying everything. Fast, Ashley, look fast!
  6. There are no cheap costumes…I guess 100$ is the penalty for being a procrastinator..
  7. I’m being little red riding hood..what will J be?
  8. Big Bad Wolf is $80..so no I am not..
  9. Oh and Little Red Riding Hood is only available in XXL.
  10. No costumes for us!
  11. Wahhhhhh…..

Just then, I found the Duck Dynasty section. J would be thrilled, I would be that much closer to being done shopping, and this took away the pressure of me trying to do couple’s costumes (that’s silly anyways, right?). Hopefully Gum-ball machine’s husband doesn’t show up as a gum ball, or I’ve failed.

Now for me, what’s something that’s sexy enough to make me smile (again, blame society..), but not slutty, and still looks inventive and like I’ve tried, thought about it, and didn’t go to the store 4 hours prior? A Greek Goddess…duhhhhh.. 30 bucks, 15 minutes wait in line for the change room, one compliment, and I was sold.

Halloween mission: ACCOMPLISHED..

Now hopefully we get lots of trick-or-treaters and they love my costume as much as I do. 🙂 Happy Halloween Everyone!!!!!

Much Love,

A

Thankful Wednesday

Dun, dun, dunnnnnn…

I am estatic to say, I HAVE BEEN NOMINATED FOR MY FIRST EVER BLOG AWARD! I am so grateful for this nomination for the One Lovely Blog Award! Thank you, Thank you, Thank you,  Weight2lose2013, I am so glad you enjoy my random ramblings. 🙂

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As I’ve read, here are the rules (copied from Weight2lose2013, copied from Sarcastic Beholder):

The One Lovely Blog Award nominations are chosen by fellow bloggers for those newer and up-and-coming bloggers. The goal is to help give recognition and also to help the new blogger to reach more viewers. It also recognizes blogs that are considered to be “lovely” by the fellow bloggers who choose them. This award recognizes bloggers who share their story or thoughts in a beautiful manner to connect with viewers and followers. In order to “accept” the award the nominated blogger must follow several guidelines:

  1. Thank the person who nominated you for the award.
  2. Add the One Lovely Blog logo to your post.
  3. Share 7 facts/or things about yourself.
  4. Nominate 15 bloggers you admire and inform the nominees by commenting on their blog.

Seven facts about myself:

  1. I love dogs. I got my first dog when I was 23 years old and I hope to never live without them again. I would have 10 if I could.
  2. I have a birth mark in the center of my back that turns bright white when I am in the sun. People always ask me what the heck it is..
  3. I am a Project Manager by day, and a foster puppy hoarder/rescuer/lover by night
  4. I am the eldest child in my family, with step- and half- siblings ranging from age 6 to 21.
  5. I have more grey hair than most 50 year olds..seriously. I have to dye my hair every 4-6 weeks.
  6. I am married to the man of my dreams: literally. The first time I met him it was like someone climbed inside my heart and was tickling it..hehe. I am so lucky.
  7. I have my Bachelor of Science degree in Chemistry. I went to university for five years, and it has proven: useless.

NOW! For my nominations! 🙂 I read these blogs daily and love, love, love seeing new posts. I know these are supposed to be ‘up and coming’ bloggers, but I still haven’t mastered the art of knowing how many followers people have… If I have nominated you, and you do not consider yourself ‘up and coming’, please don’t take offence ;). Also, I know I only have 7..so my ‘goal’ for this week is to start following more bloggers! 🙂 Stay tuned.

  1. Single Mom Dating : Because she’s awesome.
  2. Muscles and Mascara: I have searched and searched for a real-life blog about the fitness competition world. Here it is 🙂
  3. Finding My Strong: She runs half-marathons, and that is amazing..enough said.
  4. Chunkie to Cutie: She’s honest, awesome, and I can definitely relate 🙂
  5. Autoimmune Mama: Great information, supportive, and encouraging.
  6. Eternal Butterfly Kisses: Her own view of the world: beautifully written and captivating..and I love, love, love the name!
  7. Because I’m Fabulous: I just can’t stop reading this blog.

 

Love,

Ashley

Little Monsters make my life.

I had my first shift at the shelter last night. I’ve been there a few times for orientations, and to pick up our fosters, but this was my first day hanging out with the dogs in the shelter.

I’m in love.

Since it was my first shift, I had to stay with an experienced volunteer the entire night. We walked a very pregnant Momma, “Maggie”. She was tired. We had to entice her every step with treats. We finally made it outside to the grass and we weren’t sure we’d ever get her back inside.. it must have taken 45 minutes to go 200 meters. I wonder how many puppies she will have. Next, we did a bit of ‘doggy physio’ on a dog that was found with a badly broken leg. She had to have surgery to get her tail amputated and has about 20 staples up her leg. Her sad little eyes and underbite were magnified by the plastic cone around her head. Poor baby. We fed her treats, gave her lots of cuddles, and stretched her leg muscles out for her. She was unimpressed at first, but eventually realized that the pain in her leg was a fair trade-off for all the ear scratches. It’s amazing and beautiful to me how forgiving these animals can be, even after all they’ve been through. If only people could be more like dogs.

Now comes the part where I bring home another foster puppy (oops!). He was so sad, and all his brothers and sister’s were going to foster homes already. I couldn’t leave him all alone overnight in that scary kennel, could I? Nope. It was decided. I texted J and told him not to hate me..I think he knows what that means now. At the end of the night, little Sullivan and I packed a crate with all the supplies we will need for our short time together. We cruised home, with Sullivan whining periodically, and only stopping when I put my fingers through the tiny holes in the side of his crate. He is so, so small. Dont worry, little man, you’re safe now.

When we arrived home, J was sitting on the couch looking little more than unimpressed. I was prepared for him to be upset..but I had already decided that me and little man would do our absolute best to take care of ourselves, and wouldn’t ask J for any help (he loves puppies in moderation, and lately I’ve been giving him puppies in overload). I put the crate down and let the three current canine residents sniff him out for a bit while I walked over to the couch..he smiled at me. That same smile that I fell in love with, dimples and all. “Well, let’s see him,” he said, still smiling (although I could tell he was fighting it back ;)). God I love that man.

Welcome to your ‘for-now’ home, Sullivan! I can’t wait to meet your forever family.

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P.S. If you think fostering might be something you’d be interested in, I highly recommend looking into it. Taking one dog out of a kennel, or run at a shelter makes room for them to save another life. Often times (as in our case) you are provided free of charge with everything you need: food, crates, toys, collars and leashes, even food and water bowls. All you need is to provide a loving, safe environment for the dog until they find their new family. Google it to find a rescue in your area! 🙂

Long weekend = short week

I tried to get J to tell me which he was more excited for, the long weekend, or the short week. Apparently, according to him, they’re the same thing (Uh, no). Although today is Tuesday, it’s really my Monday (thank you, holiday Monday!) and I feel blessed I got to skip the typical Monday blues. ❤ Happy, happy, happy.

We had a Thanksgiving dinner (non-traditional style) last night.  I made my very first ham, homemade mac n’ cheese (J’s request), roasted root veggies, broccoli, homemade buns, and blueberry pie. My cousin’s girlfriend (my cousin is the only family I have here, other than J, of course) brought a pumpkin chocolate cheesecake. J’s friend from back home came, also. The 5 of us (and the three pups, of course), had a good time, and it was nice…it still isn’t quite the same being away from my family (will it ever be?), but we are getting to the point where I don’t cry on holidays.. 😉 Also, my ham turned out PERFECTLY, if I may say so myself. I think everyone was in a food coma when they left, and I was very happy that I was already at home…no travelling on a full belly for me! 🙂

On another note: I woke up bright and early and started a new gym. I always have trouble getting out of bed for morning gym sesh’s.. Usually (9 times out of 10) I make up some kind of excuse as to why re-setting my alarm and getting two more hours of sleep is a better plan….

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Not this time! My new gym is SO cool! It’s actually a lady who lives just down the street (a 2 minute jog) who has made her basement into a full gym! It has a private entrance, and you’re given a key with your membership. You book your 1.5hour time slot in advance, and you are the only person there.. you can bring up to 3 other people with you for no additional fee. It is AMAZING. Working out alone, in a full gym, with a private bathroom, two TV’s, your own stereo, ipod hook-ups, workout dvds (MANY of them) and an area to do them?! Oh wow, why didn’t I think of that? Also, booking in advance means that even if I don’t show up, I am still paying = I am actually getting out of bed.

Yay, yay, yay yaaaaaaaaaaaay. I am a happy camper.

 

xo

Ashley

Thankful Thursday

With Thursday here again (holy cow time is FLYING BY– am I getting old?), a serious lack of new happenings on my life, and Thanksgiving fast approaching, I decided to have a rather simple day in my blog world: Thankful Thursday.

I encourage you all to do the same. What are you thankful for?

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Today, I am thankful for my husband. Although, at times, I want to kick his butt, he is an amazing man. Thank you for being here for me. Thank you for helping me get the courage to move to another province, and for letting me cry when I missed home. Thank you for accepting my insatiable love for dogs…and listening every time I find one that we just have to help. Thank you for always kissing me before you leave in the morning, and for letting me stay in bed for that extra 20 minutes. Thank you for taking the dogs for pees at night, when it is too cold for me, and for not getting mad when I am behind seventeen loads of laundry. Thank you for trying to understand me.  I love you more than words can say, and I am so thankful to have you in my life. ❤

Go Home, Thyroid, You’re Drunk..

I think I am getting the flu. My body aches like I can’t explain: it feels like I got hit by a bus. I have had a headache for 9.5 days (yes, I have been keeping track). I never get headaches. Yesterday was the worst. It felt like my body was giving up…my muslces hurt!!! This morning I woke up, expecting to be bed-ridden, but nope, still the same, except now my throat is a bit sore. If you’re coming to play, flu, please come now. I am not interested in prolonging this experience any further. GET OUT OF MY BODY.

On another note, I had a follow-up appointment last week with my Naturopath.

We have determined that I have very low stomach acid production (who knew?), and I am now on supplements. When I say low, I don’t mean low, either. I mean low like “you should only be able to take 2 acid pills max per meal without pain” and I can take 5..no problem.   Now before you roll your eyes (or is that just the old me?), please understand that I used to be anti-“hippie doctor”, too. I thought it was bogus, and people who took oil of oregano made me giggle. But after this thyroid fiasco started,  I began feeling like an 80-year old woman, and my MD said “Get used to it. You’ll be on the medication for the rest of your life”, I decided to burst through my conservative bubble and try it out. Oh boy, I’m glad I did.. he’s awesome. While I’m sure there are some cases that Naturopaths are, in-fact, glorified “hippie doctors”, Dr. M rocks! Everything he says is so logical, hey did you know that low stomach acid means low protein digestion means low amino acid digestion and low mineral availability? And that, combined with the fact that my thyroid is in constant underdrive is probably contributing to my feeling like a bag of poo all the time? OH and probably why my body is holding onto these last 10 pounds like a life raft? DUHH!!! It makes so much sense. Everything he says makes so. much. sense. I love him.

 

Besides that, I got another blood test. He called today with my results, and we chatted for a while (it’s so nice not feeling rushed by a doctor). With the blood results in hand, he thinks my ‘flu’ is actually my thyroid. I’m hoping for the flu…seems more short term.  So what’s up with my thyroid? HAHA good question, I’m not sure it has any idea.

Keep in mind, I am currently on Synthroid, which should, in my non- hippie-doctor’s opinion, be a cure-all treatment (P.S. I hope that’s not politically incorrect, since I’ve now said it three times.. I’m only trying to relate to the old me 😉 )

June 26 Blood Test:

  • Free T3: low, outside normal range (but borderline acceptable)
  • Free T4: low (but acceptable)
  • TSH: okay, but low
  • TPA (Antibody): too high

Based on this, I was diagnosed with Hashimoto’s and given a new medication *supplement* to help faciliate the T4 to T3 conversion (Synthroid is T4). At this stage, I asked for T3, and he told me T3 is only really used by people in body competitions who want to get realllly, realllly lean. Uhh…okay, so can I have T3? No such luck.

Last week’s Blood Test:

  • Free T3: Way too low (almost 1 pmol/L lower than last time)
  • Free T4: Too low, lower than last time (but still borderline acceptable)
  • TSH: much better, within limits
  • TPA: much lower..almost within limits

SO! Based on this, I do NOT have an autoimmune disease, I do NOT have Hashimoto’s. BUT, Hashimoto’s is a sneaky little bugger, and who knows, I could have it next blood test. 😐 Yeah, okay, this sounds dumb…is this a real disease? I still can’t have T3. Today, I will start on a new medication, again, to help facilitate the transition even harder..maybe even FORCE it a bit.

Come on T4, lose a T already, would you?!?! I need to get my energy back, and kick this flu.

Xo

Ashley

 

The newest member of the clan.

Last time we went camping,  we were abruptly awakened to the sound of the tent wall tearing open..oh, and the sight of a crazy black dog jumping out the side. It was 7:15am and Ben saw a cow near our tent. He was just trying to protect us, I’m sure…*insert eye roll here*.

Needless to say, after chasing Ben through a large open field filled with 30 plus cows (that I was convinced were going to trample him), we headed home early. I think in that moment, Ben became a cow. He was one with the pack, but they didnt want anything to do with him…poor dude. By the time we got him to come back to us, him and a large bull were in a face-off. Ben was crunched down with his front legs bent, taunting the bull…” but I want to play!!!”, as the bull charged at Ben.. only a few feet at a time. He was issuing a warning, Ben didnt get it, and J and I were still half asleep and shoeless…running through a cow lease. It was neat. 

Rein stood beside us the entire time.  I think she was as confused as the cows…she would glance up at us, as if to say “what the hell is he doing?”.

After that trip, I wanted a camper. We started looking, and came across this little beauty. Ive always been a tent-camping girl, and always said I’d never have a camper… I guess I lied. Anyway, we decided we wanted something very basic.  A small camper..cheap, basic,  light (we only have a half tonne truck), with no bells and whistles, and bonus points if we can go winter camping…
Here she is:

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The lady was asking a lot more than our agreed upon budget, but after looking at it and going home, we decided we’d go back and be honest: we can’t afford this…but we’d love it. We offered her a reasonable amount under asking, told her we understood if she couldn’t accept it, and explained we just thought we’d try. Guess what? She gave it to us for $500 less than we even offered! !! She said she was excited to see it go to a good home..where it would get a lot of use.

I am so, so excited. Thanksgiving weekend (next weekend for us Canadian folks), we are heading out. Thank you, B from down the street. We will take care of your beauty 🙂 🙂