Thursday, January 29, 2009

Oh Massage Therapist, How I Have Missed You

It was almost eighteen months ago that I saw my massage therapist for the first time. I had considered seeing one before that, but I could not justify the cost. The thought of spending $50 to $100 for someone to rub my back for an hour horrified me. But I was going through a rough patch with my anxiety and my body was so tense that my shoulders and neck were in serious pain, so Rommel and I decided I should give it a try.

I thought I was going to cry after that first session. I had never been that relaxed in my life; I didn’t even know it was possible to be that relaxed.

We figured out how to fit it into our budget and I began to see her ever two weeks. I was still tense most of the time, but it was easier for me to relax when I was at home and the pain was no where near as bad. Having that hour where I was almost forced to clear my mind was a good thing too. It has also helped with my anxiety. Because it is easier for me to relax, I can calm myself down faster when I start to have a panic attack.

The massages also made me realize how important it was to take time for myself and to take care of myself. I was not coming home after work with debilitating shoulder pain that kept me from doing anything all evening. I might be tense when I come home now, but I could sit down for a moment, relax my muscles, and enjoy the evening with my husband.

I have spaced appointments out a little bit more lately to save money, but my massage therapist has also been out of town. It has been almost six weeks since I have had a massage and I cannot wait until next week. I was fine the first four weeks, but then I started to develop some pain. Today has been the worst. I just want to go home and lie in a hot bath for the rest of the evening.

So I must admit that I love my massage therapist and I hope I never lose her.

Monday, January 26, 2009

New Biodegradable Toothbrush Holders and More by EcoGen

Our store began to bring in more environmentally friendly items last year, which took quite a bit of convincing at first. It was considered more of a fad at that point in time. But people are willing to spend extra money on these kind of items even with the economy the way it is, including me. Our overall sales are down, just like most businesses, but "green" items are still selling.

We recently received samples of a new biodegradable product that would replace plastic household items, such as toothbrush holders and soap dishes. Here's the website's description:

EcoGen empowers retailers and consumers to begin the transition away from the old era of petroleum based plastics towards a new ecological generation of biodegradable household materials. In the back of our minds, we all know the statistics: a leather boot in a landfill will last 40 to 50 years, a soda pop can up to 500 years, a plastic jug 1 million years, and a discarded Styrofoam cup or glass bottle possibly forever. In contrast EcoGenTM, will biodegrade in six to nine months when composted.

I like the shape and they seem very durable, so I decided I would try them at home to see if they hold up. So far they are living up to test, but I am still curious about the claim that they are compostable. I am tempted to put one of the pieces in my composter, but that would be a waste.

Definitely check them out if you get the chance.

I Love Great Buys!!!

About every six months I get an itch to change my surroundings. It usually starts with me cleaning a room and purging miscellaneous items, but progresses to me rearranging furniture and moving art. Rommel will walk into the room, see what it happening, and walk right back out because he knows I get crazy when I am in a "redecorating mood". Sometimes I will get to the point where I want to repaint, even demo if I could.

Well, I have been feeling that itch all weekend, but I did not know what to do with the furniture I had in the bedroom. I have a few items in the garage that I sometimes rotate, but I just was not loving any of them. We happened to go to Target for a couple of items and I found the best piece. And it was on clearance! Yeah!!! It also had a small whole in the back which really did not effect the piece at all, but we received another discount.

It was a small white chest of twelve drawers that would be a fabulous night stand that I can put a million different items in, such as jewelry or lotions and perfume.

Please ignore all the junk around the chest. I was in the process of organizing things when I took the pic.

Saturday, January 24, 2009


Animal from the Muppets

I don't know about you, but I see a resemblance. The only thing missing is the rocker sunglasses.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Something is not right here...

Rommel and I are in our third week of our "financial challenge" and we have failed miserably. He keeps finding what he says are such great deals on eBay and he can't pass them up. One of the great deals is a PlayStation 3. I will totally admit that it was a good deal, especially because it has a warranty, etc, but it is something we do not need. He deserves his toys and video games seem to be stress relief for him, but we both agreed to this challenge.

He has done a great job not going out to eat for lunch during the work week, which is hard for him because doing lunches is part of the advertising business. The funny thing is that because he has been eating lunch at work, he has been coming home from work at least an hour earlier than usual.

As for me, I have probably been doing worse than Rommel. Since I have been cooking at home a lot more, I have been going to the grocery store more. And I am not one of those people who make one big shopping trip a week. I have a grocery store two blocks away from my house, so I just walk there when I need something. I am sure those trips add up and would probably end up being more than the one planned trip would cost.

There is also the whole Starbucks issue. I have still been stopping there at least once a day. I have been using gift cards, which is completely within the rules, but I am going through them like crazy. Luckily I received quite a few at Christmas, but it still feels wrong. A $20 gift card pays for almost ten ice teas, but for some reason I can spend it all in one week. That is ten trips to Starbucks in one week! I should be rationing them or something because I won't have the money to waste when we cut our weekly budget even more and the gift cards will be a treat then.

We both keep making exceptions to our agreement and it's got to stop. We have to stop cheating!

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Lumps, Bumps, and Other Scary Things

A few nights ago I was walking into the kitchen and happened to run my free hand over the front of my jeans. I stopped in the doorway when I felt a strange bump. After double, triple, and quadruple checking, I found two marble sized lumps in my upper thigh. At first I was pretty calm about it. I knew that I could call the doctor in the morning and probably get in the same day just to have it checked out, but there were still those few hours in between the discovery and the appointment. And of course I managed to freak myself out over those few hours. I would tell myself that they were probably just fatty deposits or something of that nature, but then I would think they seemed pretty large for just fatty deposits. I would tell myself that I have no other symptoms of anything, but then I would think back to the few days I seemed really exhausted and wanted to take a nap to get through the day. As more time went by, I became more and more freaked out. When I got to the doctor's office and they measured my blood pressure, it was crazy high.

Luckily the lumps turned out to be benign cysts. They provided a reality check that I apparently needed to get my ass in gear.

I woke up today in an excellent mood since I found out the lumps were nothing serious. I had a fabulous day and had a bunch of stuff I wanted to get done after I took the dogs on their walk. I put on the dogs' harnesses and started out. We were waiting at the crosswalk when an older gentleman came near us. Sunny is scared too death of older guys for some unknown reason and began to freak out. When the light finally changed, we began to cross the street and a firetruck passed us. There were no sirens or anything; it was just driving by. Well Sunny freaked out even more and tired to run between my legs. Next thing I know I am eating asphalt.

So now I have lumps in my leg and bumps on my hands and knees. Rommel bought me chocolate chip cookies, all better.

Thursday, January 1, 2009

Our New Years

Rommel and I agreed that we were just going to hang out at home for New Year's Eve and New Year's day because we did so much running around for Christmas. We had a small list of things to do around the house. We managed to change the laundry room sink's faucet and fertilize the front lawn. We finished early this afternoon and fit in a relaxing nap before cutting into the pork loin that had been cooking all day.

Both Rommel and I made a few resolutions, the most important of which is our financial challenge. We will have an allowance each week to use on eating out, entertainment, and any other miscellaneous purchases. We will start with $40 per week for the first three months of the year and then subtract $10 every three months. If we really want an item that is not a necessity, we will have to save up for it. Groceries, personal items, and emergencies are the only exceptions. I think it will turn out to be a really good thing. We can put more money towards bills and savings, while cutting down on all the crap we tend to accumulate. Hopefully we will also get rid of a lot of the possessions that hold us down in the process. Since I will not be buying as many books, I can slowly open up my bookshelves. Rommel wants to sell a bunch of his jerseys and basketball shoes and he can put that money towards eating out for lunch at work or on his computer.

I also have my own goals for 2009. I will strive to walk the dogs more often and cook at home more during the week. I also register for Glendale's Downtown Dash 5K race in March. It is not very far and can be walked, but I think it is a great goal for the year and will get me moving.

Happy New Year!