Work Hard Play Hard

[Almost] one week down, 11 more to go!  

My new job entails twelve weeks of training without a day off…it sounds intense, and will likely get much much tougher as I go on, but it is SO worth it. 

I can’t explain the sense of accomplishment that comes with working over the weekend, at night and early mornings.  Yes, there are lots of times that I am tired/can’t sleep/mentally exhausted but it just makes me count the bright spot that much more.  For real, a fellow agent and I were joking with one of the guys at the terminal about keeping smiles on 🙂  How can you not smile when you get to work with such awesome people?

Despite the hours, I have certainly managed to have some time for myself here and there, it just takes careful planning and prioritizing! 

Friend time

I haven’t been to yoga in a few weeks b/c my favorite yoga buddy, Jacki has been tied up in rehearsal for modern dance show that took place this weekend.  I was debating going Friday or Saturday, but since my schedule is so unpredictable, I decided to go Friday just in case I wasn’t able to go Saturday. 

I dragged my art/musical theater/show loving friend Ross along (actually he volunteered with utmost enthusiasm)…but I won’t embarrass him too much.  He’s a fan of Jacki’s boyfriend Anthony, so the three of us made a night out of it and got drinks at the Jewish Mother across the street from the dance studio before the show.  The Jewish Mother is technically the spot to go pre-Norva concerts (like when I saw the Legwarmers back in April) but a show is a show! 

After beers for the boys, and vino for moi, we headed to the studio, really not sure what to expect, but it ended up being GREAT!

here’s a few shots of Jacki’s finest:

just as a disclaimer, there’s a possibility that one of the above are not actually Jacki- I swear there was one dancer who looked just like her.  And I may have accidentally taken a few pics of her, what a creeper I am!

The last two are also from my favorite dance (?, act? song? scene? not sure what individual parts of a dance recital/show are called, obvi my vocabulary in that arena is completely lacking)- it was related in some way to the Virginia Zoo and was safari animal themed, I LOVED IT.  And thinking back on it makes two of my summer go to songs 

Yes, links were necessary.  Play them both consecutively if you are really looking for a mid- day pick me up.

Post show pic of the group and the star to be posted tomorrow!  
[EDITED TO ADD:]


Following the show was a FABULOUS reception with some phenomenal food choices.  Savory italian monkey bread?  Oreo cake?  Yes please.  Did I mention champagne and wine galore?  Yep.  We might have opened two bottles just ourselves.  Held ourselves back from Poppin’ the champagne though.  I also may have attempted some bar poses on in the studio where the reception was held, thanks to my forgiving white pants it wasn’t too bad of a stretch!  Some yoga couldn’t hurt though 🙂

Me time

Work had me up at 4 a.m. Saturday morning post-show (definitely regretting that last glass of sweet white wine at one point) so by the time I got a mild break, I was ready to sit and chill.  10 a.m. on a Saturday morning isn’t ideal time to make plans with friends, so I ended up at the salon for a manicure pedicure (thank you Groupon, $27.00 what a deal!).  Met a new friend, who I will introduce later, and chose a lovely lavender that I have been meaning to try out.  It took a day or two to get used to because bright pinks and peaches are my go to, but I am loving it!  As I sat in the massage chair, I kept was able to keep up with work via iPhone emails and stay on top of everything.  I will take working from a massage chair + pedicure any day!

Before the spa, I stopped by a charity event/work out that some of my fellow cross fitters were participating in called 31 Heroes.  Check it out 
here.   Congratulations to them for raising over $300,000!!  

It was similar to the MURPH workout I wrote about in my last post, but the HEAT was unbearable.  Needless to say, this will certainly be something for my bucket list next year, provided I have that weekend off of work.  It’s a great workout, with a partner, for a great cause!  (and did I mention it was held at Waterside!?)

I rounded out my Saturday with some paddle boarding, and a relaxing dinner at home before a busy busy night of work Saturday night. 

turkey burger, roasted asparagus, 1/2 sweet potato + rosemary caramelized onions and greek yogurt for some ZING!
of course my roommate/company wasn’t too far away 
and after she was spoiled enough to have her own sampling of my turkey burger,
helped herself to ASPARAGUS!  Guess she’s trying to get some of those vitamins. 🙂

I’ll let her have all of the veggies she would like, but will have to draw the line when she helps herself to my VINO! 

Family time 

Sunday was a blurr of work/zombie-like tireness/a 4mile walk-run combo/and a hot minute at the pool.  Oh yeah, and more work. 

Luckily I did get some time with my brother and grandparents for dinner.  My grandfather isn’t in the best of health, so we do what we can to visit him every few weeks.  Luckily he is in the best of spirits all things considered.

Bonus family time: tonight (Monday) I got off work extra early after working from about 0200 – 0400.  Instead of pushing myself too hard to go work out or run errands, I came home to my peaceful apartment for some R&R.  There were some EPIC storms to listen to as well.  I was glad to be dry.  

Around 6 p.m. I walked w/ my umbrella of course, to meet my brother and mom for dinner.  So urban of me right? Hah.  

I guess I feeling so ultra fabulous that only a martini would suit.  In actuality its super muggy outside and I have seemed to wine myself out recently.  So cocktail it was!  To accompany my beverage, I had a seared salmon served over roasted vegetable risotto.  Melt in your mouth!  Other favorites at the table were the GINORMOUS meatloaf platter (a lot more glamorous than it sounds) and the smoked salmon salad.  Check it out, No Frill is a MUST in Norfolk.  Usually the salad w/ seared tuna is my go-to, but I had had a salad for lunch and am SO glad I switched it up!

decaf espresso + one Starbuck’s dark chocolate graham on my way home, and I was a happy cookie.  or happy boarding agent that is. 

Before I sign off for the night / week, I must prove that I did in fact work this weekend with all of the playing I got to do 🙂

Here’s a few work shots I took this weekend:

Saturday morning sunset on the Elizabeth; leaving the coal pier circa 5 a.m.
the Maersk Illinois, a Norfolk based container ship making a special trip
Orient Tribune- loading wood pellets; can’t get over how billowy the clouds were on Sunday!

These were a few of MY bright spots of the past week, and I can’t wait to find more in this coming week.  Until next time!



New Beginnings

Coming back to the blog after a 2.5 month Hiatus feels like pulling of a band-aid.  That is, in the sense that I regret there being inconsistent threads of posts, but will regret more when another year as gone by with no fun-online-portal to look back on. 


For the last few weeks I have struggled to start posting again, because I was overwhelmed by the idea of capturing EVERYTHING via photos and words that has happened in my life since May 14th, precisely.  I mean, I was merely a 23 year old, not a 230-and-a-half-something [and 24 is approaching faster than I ever imagined…]. 


So letting go of that part of me that wants a perfect posting record, and starting with today.  After all, life repeats itself, and if not, I am sure I will stumble across reasons to bring up/post pictures and stories from the past few months over the next few months!


PS I even tried the whole write a bunch of posts at once and set them on timers so they post routinely throughout the week.  but it failed, I simply felt inauthentic posting on “Friday morning at 7 a.m.” thoughts/phrases/hyperboles/antics that I actually felt on Tuesday.  Deep, right? 


so on with it.  August 1st:


Today was the beginning of a new chapter of my life.  New desk, new title, new responsibilities, new supervisor, new schedule.  Scratch that, let’s call it “fresh.”  Fresh desk, fresh title, fresh responsibilities, fresh supervisor, fresh schedule.  There was nothing “old” about my previous position, but I was ready for a change, for a challenge, for an opportunity.  I moved from the Accounting Department at T. Parker Host to the Operations department.  too much explanation to communicate online but what we do is this.


Basically the pros: in and out of the office, on and off ships, lots of face to face interaction and communication; lots of logistics, organization, and problem solving
cons: unpredictable schedule, around the clock hours, reachable 24/7, drop of the hat problems, stress due to lots at stake, not glamorous
and PROS again (b/c I like to be a positive person): team atmosphere, work hard/play hard, overtime, fresh air, sense of accomplishment, accountability, challenge 


As evident, my personal life and social life is taking a bit of a hit.  That really means I need to carefully consider and think about how I spend my time.  It also means that a place to vent/celebrate and appreciate life is that much more important. 


So, I’m back.  Not a once a week, not once a day, but just as my schedule permits, and as I feel.  


with that…here’s a few things I have been up to:

Lucky #’s 3 & 7!
  • Elizabeth River Run-  after I PR’d my St. Patrick’s Day 8K I struggled to keep up with running as the weather got warmer and nicer…and I started CrossFit.  When May hit, I realized I needed to sign up for another race to get myself back into running.  I had heard about the Elizabeth River Run for a few years, and a rumor that it used to take place in Norfolk.  Now it takes place not too far away in Portsmouth, just across the water!  

It was 10K and SUPER HUMID. I was not expecting to struggle as hard as I did, but I truly hadn’t trained as much for this one as for the 8K.  I ended up finishing with a 9:15-9:30ish average mile, compared to the average 8:50 pace I hit for the 8K.  I definitely thing the longer distance, heat and training came into play.  but it was GREAT being out there. 

fun part of the day was running into my 7th grade math teacher, and my cousin Bridget + friends– can’t help but smiling on days like that!


Oh yea and how do I recover from runs?  Of course I get a pedicure, no one likes blistered, rough feet!

  • Barry’s Graduation from Nursing School
  • MURPH– You can read about it here.  My friend Jenna (the hot blonde in the pictures) and I’s plan A was to each do half of the work out [scaled that is, meaning pull-ups with a big rubber band and push-ups on my knees], plan B was to to the whole thing but split the pull-ups and then plan C was to just do as much of the work out that we could, til failure basically.  Well guess what?  We knocked it out.  Both runs, all pull-ups, all push-ups and all squats.  My plan ended up being 5 pull-ups, 10 push-ups and 15 squats X 20 rounds.  Words cannot express how grateful I was for my cheerleaders and fellow CrossFitters.

What keeps me going back to CrossFit 757 even if I skip a whole week here and there is the people and the trainers.  I don’t ever plan to be a competitive CrossFit athlete, but it’s amazing to have encouragement during the workouts, and trainers to ensure you are safely challenging yourself and have good form.  I love the social aspect as well.  I hate missing catch up time with the other girls (and guys) I work out with.  A t the end of the day, we are only competing against ourselves, the weight, and the clock!
  • Last but not least: I tried Mermaid Winery a few weeks ago, Norfolk’s first urban Winery:  Love their flights for tasting 🙂
  • couldn’t post without a few food pics/receipts- I have been attempting to cook w/ the littlest amount of mess posible  (who likes turning on the oven in the summer anyways!) 
tempeh with veggies and either isreali couscous or shiratake rice!
simple dinner: salmon burger, spinach +
homemade lemon yogurt dill sauce
sugar cookie fruit pie for the 4th

[insert: just had a minor heart attack b/c google chrome “quit unexpectedly” and I almost lost this ENTIRE post for the second time.  lesson learned to save often!]

quick kitchen project tonight: green bean/feta/almond salad 

only had a little of this to use up, and glad it was all I had b/c I realized it have HFCS in it, GROSS/could do without!
ta da = yummy packed lunch! 

So that’s all I have for tonight, but it felt AMAZING to post a little 🙂  


More to come- just to note/aka to let you know I have been up to more than working out and cooking: OpSail 2012 happened, I celebrated my uncle’s Nursing Ph.D. graduation (DNP in nurse practitioner to be exact) and my grandparents’ 50th wedding anniversary.  I have SO much to be thankful for and a fabulous life.

Be back soon– off to work!!