Monday, September 29, 2008

A New Read

Jake and I are taking a personal finance class through church and decided we would buy additional books as well. The more we can do to organize our money now, the better. Our class officially starts 14 October and I am very excited to get ourselves into a better habit of organizing and budgeting our money. The class will end by Christmas and it will be nice to start 2009 off right with new great habits. We bought Personal Finance for Dummies and I'm going to start going through it tonight. I figured this is a good one to start with since it's written very simply for us "dummies." I'll keep you up to date on how the book is!


I've come up with yet another plan. I am going to set goals for myself each month and keep you updated on how I'm doing with them. My goal for October: Run 6 miles per week. I'm going to follow The Couch-to-5K Running Plan help reach my goals. I'll keep you posted on how I'm doing.

Look Ma, No Cavities!

I had to go to the dentist today and I'm proud to say, no cavities! Yeah! I guess all of that hard work has paid off!

Monday, September 22, 2008

A Kabillion Stars

Out of the last 60 hours I have worked 24 and I'm kinda tired. Jake had to work tonight and I was half asleep on the couch as he was getting ready to leave. Nico was bouncing off the walls with energy. He would run outside, run back inside down the hall, slide on the tile, turn around and run and almost attack us. He was a little hyper. I felt really bad for him and I really didn't want to play. I did, however, suck it up and put on my running shoes. Nico and I went for a quick little run at about 8:15 tonight. Our street is pretty dark and I was amazed at how many stars there are. I swear I could see a kabillion! I forget how relaxing it is to just stare at them all and think about how far away they are. It really made me appreciate that Nico got me out to run tonight. Thanks buddy!

Olive Oil

So I read online today about olive oil and how there are many uses for it other than cooking. Tonight, before bed, I put olive oil on my skin and hair and let it sit for awhile. Then I showered and my skin feels amazingly soft! (I'll know about my hair tomorrow since it is still wet). Here are some of the other ideas this website suggested.

Cuticles and nails: If your cuticles are ragged and your nails brittle and dry, olive oil can help! Soak nails for 30 minutes in a small cup of olive oil.
Smoothe on a generous amount of olive oil before bed, put on white gloves, and go to sleep. Your hands will be softer and smoother in the morning!
To soothe and smooth dry, chapped lips, dab on a little oil.
Hair Treatment:
This helps repair split ends, heals dandruff, and makes your hair shiny, silky, and lustrous. Massage a few tablespoons of olive oil into scalp and hair. Cover hair with a plastic bathing cap and leave on for 30 minutes or more, then shampoo as usual.
Massage a small amount of olive oil into skin whenever you need softening and moisturizing, Apply extra oil to rough or cracked areas.
Bath: Add several Tablespoons of olive oil to your bath, along with a few drops of your favorate essential oil, to soothe and nourish you.

A word of warning: washing off the oil, and probably bathing in it, makes the tub and shower very slick so be careful!

Lemon Bars

I decided that I want to be more spontaneous and caring and thoughtful to Jake, so while he was at work I baked him some lemon bars. Now I have to say, I'm pretty proud of how they turned out since this is my first time. I can't wait for him to get home and taste them!

If anyone has any ideas for some awesome ways to be spontaneous and say "I love you," then please let me know. I'm always looking for ideas. The more the better!

Dear Sara,

I found this in one of my Better Homes and Gardens New Cookbook. It explains margarine and using it in cookies. I instantly thought about your last blog. Maybe it will help.

"All Margarines are not equal-especially when it comes to baking cookies. For the best results, choose stick margarines containing at least 60% vegetable oil. Spreads with less than 60% vegetable oil have a high water content and do not give satisfactory results in any type of cookie, including bar and drop cookies. Also, avoid spreads labeled diet, whipped, liquid, or soft; they are intended for table use, not for baking. Stick margarines containing corn oil will produce a soft cookie dough, so you may need to adjust the chilling instructions given in the recipe. Do not substitute cooking oil for the margarine in cookie recipes. Oil is 100% fat; margarine is an emulsion of fat and water. Substituting an equal amount of oil for margarine will produce a cookie that tastes and feels greasy."
Well there you go. I didn't know all of this!

Sunday, September 21, 2008


Hi, I'm Kayla and I have a "No-See-Um" problem. This here is a "No-See-Um" and they are in our back yard. They get their name from being so tiny that you never know they are there. Jake and I were pulling weeds the other day and we were both very itchy. We came inside and we both had at least 11 bug bites on us. The next day, I took about 90 seconds to walk outside and fill Nico's water bowl and I was lucky enough to get 2 more bites! Little buggers!

Tuesday, September 16, 2008


So I've come to the conclusion that I have a few obsessions. I am obsessed with checking my email and blogging. All day I think of things I can blog about. It's an illness.


This is the
"Fluidity Bar" and it is my new best friend! It is a free standing ballet bar and the workout is that of a ballet dancer. Dancers have such long, lean muscles that always look so good. I bought this at the end of last year, used it for a little bit, and then stored it in a different room. Along with my running and weight routine, I'm going to be really good about using my Fluidity Bar. When using it, you can tell it works. It's pretty challenging. I'm excited to start it up again! If you want to challenge yourself too, I put a link to the website so you can order the bar too. It's not cheap but it will work.

Monday, September 15, 2008

Inspiration & Info

While Jake and I were flying to the east coast, I was reading a magazine and there was an article in there about a couple who travels the nation to compete in 5K (3.1 miles) races. This way they get to compete, stay fit, and visit wonderful places across the nation. While in NYC, I heard that there was a breast cancer awareness event called "Race for the Cure" happening soon. This was a 5K race through Central Park. I was thinking that there isn't a much better place to run than Central Park. I would love to travel the nation raising money for wonderful charities and staying fit at the same time. I know that I originally wrote a post saying I was going to train for a 1/2 marathon... yeah, never happened... surprise, surprise... but 3 miles seems very obtainable. And at my 10-minute-mile pace, that is still only 30 minutes! I can do that! So I've decided, just this minute I am going to find a local 5K and start training for it and compete in it. So if it's for charity, expect me to email, call, or write you requesting donations so be ready to pay up 'cuz I HATE RUNNING but if it's for such a good cause then I can do it. I'm going to put a link to 5K races on the blog so check it out! If you want to join me and train together, or even keep each other motivated from a distance, please let me know! I'd love a buddy or two, or ten!

With that being said, here is some health information I pulled up. Very interesting!

Did you know that September is a very busy month for cancer awareness? It is. Here is a list of which month is which for the rest of the year. I'll put a link for the whole thing on the blog so you can stay up-to-date on which month it is!

National Ovarian Cancer Month
Childhood Cancer Month
Gynecologic Cancer Awareness Month
Prostate Cancer Awareness Week (Sept. 14-20)
Prostate Cancer Awareness Month
Leukemia and Lymphoma Awareness Month
Take a Loved One for a Check-up Day (Sept. 16)

National Breast Cancer Awareness Month
National Mammography Day (Oct. 17)
International Brain Tumor Awareness Week (Oct. 26 - Nov. 1)

Great American Smokeout (Nov. 20)
Coaches vs. Cancer Classic® Weekend (Nov. 20-21)
Lung Cancer Awareness Month
National Family Caregivers Month
Pancreatic Cancer Awareness Month

As I was reading my October Shape magazine I found some interesting facts on disease prevention called "MIND YOUR MOUTH, SAVE YOUR LIFE." These are things you may not have though of:

First, keeping your teeth and gums healthy can lower your risk of lung, bladder, and pancreas cancer by 14% They recommend brushing twice a day for at least 2 minutes and flossing at least once a day. "The ideal oral hygiene routine: Brush, floss, then rinse with mouthwash."

Second, gum disease can double your chance of developing insulin resistance (a precursor of diabetes).

Third, Tooth decay and gum disease can up the amount of oral bacteria that enters your bloodstream, leaving you vulnerable to infective endocarditis, and infection of the heart valve that may increase your risk for a stroke.

Pretty interesting how just 6 minutes or so a day can save your life!

Brain Age

One of my college roommates named Dareth sent me an email with this fun little "Brain Age" game. It's a quick 60 second game that is fun and challenging. Give it a try! I was a 23 on my first try! Yeah Me!

Procedure of Flash Fabrica Game:
1. Touch 'start'
2. Wait for 3, 2, 1.
3. Memorize the numbers' positions on the screen, then click the corresponding circles from the smallest number to the biggest number.
4. At the end of game, the computer will tell you how old your brain is.

Good luck !!

Sunday, September 14, 2008

The Big Apple

After Boston, we took a 4 hour train ride down the coast of Rhode Island and Connecticut to New York City. What a BEAUTIFUL ride! Although most of the trees were still green, some had started to change colors already giving us a beautiful show of yellows, oranges and reds. Fabulous! Once in NYC, we took a cab from the train station to our hotel. HOLY CRAP! Taxi drivers do not care how fast they drive, whether or not people are crossing the street, whether or not a car is coming at them as they want to turn, or anything! They get you where you need to go as fast as possible not matter the cost! SCARY! I decided that hoofin' it would be our primary mode of transportation. We stayed at the Hilton Garden Inn in Times Square. It was a really nice hotel.

The first day there, we went to the Empire State building. It was so much higher than I ever imagined it was. we went to the 86th floor and took pictures of this pigeon who was just kickin' it there on tallest building in NY and he posed for us.

That night, we went to a place called Carnigie Deli for a pastrami sandwich. Jake and both ordered one and quickly changed our order to just one sandwich to share after we saw them bring other people their dinner. The picture shows why. Anyway, it was the most delicious pastrami sandwich I have ever had and the pickles were delish!
The next day was 9/11. We took a ferry to Ellis Island and Liberty Island. That was really fun. The Statue of Liberty is much larger than I thought it would be. Ellis Island has hundreds of pictures of immigrants that I really enjoyed looking at. It was a pretty place. That night, we went to go see "Legally Blonde" on Broadway. What an AMAZING show. It was so good and hillarious at that! Highly recommended. After the show, we went to ground zero. We went late at night thinking it would be a little quieter, and it was. I have to say, there isn't much there. There is a huge hole in the ground with a chain link fence around it that is lined so you can't see inside. There is no memorial or anything yet even after 7 years. There was a fire truck out on the street with people talking about where they were the day of and all of that. It was very emotional hearing how these people could see it out their window and I was all the way in Fresno, CA when it happened. It shed a new light on it.

The next day, we woke up to rain. We went to the Metropolition Museum of Natural History which was great and HUGE. We also walked through Central Park which is much bigger and much more beautiful than I ever thought and then we went shopping on 5th Ave. I'm going to use the excuse that I didn't like anything I saw as a reason I didn't buy anything... it had nothing to do with the prices of course! We also had a Yankee game planned. Jake hates the Yankees (he's a Boston Red Sox fan) but we wanted to see the stadium before they tear it down. So we heard that we had to get "the best pizza in the world" at a place called Nick's in the Bronx. First we got on the wrong train, then another wrong one. Then we walked around in a little place called Harlem for about an hour trying to find the subway station that had the correct train. Talk about standing out in a crowd! Now keep in mind it is still raining. We decided to skip Nick's and just go to the game. Well, we finally found a cab willing to pick us up and he took us to the right subway station. We caught that, with about a kabillion other people going to Yankee stadium, and finally got there. We found a line and they proceed to announce that no backpacks are allowed, which of course we had because we had been out all day long. So we had to walk down and across the street to a bowling alley which would check our backpack. We finally get into the stadium to find the field flooded. Well, we hung out for a bit and took some pictures. When game time can and went, we left without seeing a game and about $155 in the whole for 2 $15 face value tickets. Oh well, the price you pay for one of the last games in that stadium EVER. Anyway, we went back to Times Square and ate at Bubba Gumps. Delicious and way fun!

Overall, it was a wonderful trip. We got back safe after 19 hours of travelling which included a subway trip from Times Square to Grand Central Station, then a train on the Long Island Rail Road to Islip, NY then a plane to Baltimore where we sat for 3 hours. Then a plane to San Antonio, TX and then to Phoenix. Then we ate at The Old Spaghetti Factory and drove 2 hours back home. What a long day!


Jake and I returned from our east coast vacation late last night. It was wonderful! First off we flew into Providence, RI. What a pretty place! We then took a train to Boston. We both agreed it is our new favorite city ever! The people there are friendly, the city is beautiful and clean, and it felt very safe. There is a ton of stuff to do and the food is fabulous! We went to an Italian place called G'vanni's and it was the best chicken parmasean I've ever had! HUGE! We also went to a Boston Red Sox game. It rained, but we went anyway and had a great time. We were tied at the end of the game when the Tampa Bay Rays scored. Jake turned his hat upside down and inside out (a "Rally Cap" he calls it) for luck. I did not. Boston ended up losing and he said it was because I wasn't wearing the rally cap.

Saturday, September 6, 2008


Well, Jake and I didn't get our house. We offered our best and the seller came back with wanting even more. We just couldn't do it. We're going to wait a bit and see how much money we can put away. Our plan is to make another offer on it, just early next year. We'll see how it goes I guess. But for now, we are just waiting and saving.

We;re leave for Boston and New York City tomorrow at 9:45a so we have a bunch of stuff to do today. Packing and laundry and taking Nico to my folks house for the week and just making sure we have all of our papers together with our confirmation numbers and such. It will be SO fun!

Talk to ya'll soon!