Taste of the Nation Orlando 2014

I need to back up a few weeks because I’ve been meaning to talk about Taste of the Nation Orlando, which I went to for my second year. So let’s pretend it’s two weeks ago, mmmkay?

After a 3:00am wake-up for an 18-miler, a large iced coffee, a short nap, a few Diet Cokes, and a 18 oz sugar free Red Bull, because why not at that point, I made my way to the Taste of the Nation Orlando with my last minute date, Cheyanne.

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Hubs was originally my date for the night but he found out that he had to work all weekend the week before the event, so I didn’t get to dress up with him which makes me sad. We almost never get pictures together and I was looking forward to getting one of us looking all pretty-like. Cheyanne was a good date substitute though and she didn’t even try to take advantage of me at the end of the night.

Anyway, if you don’t know already from my previous posts, Taste of the Nation (TOTN) raises money for the Share our Strength’s efforts to end childhood hunger. Michelle and I went last year and this year it was held at the same spot – a giant ballroom at the World Center Marriott, the mother of all Marriotts. Not only does TOTN hold silent charity auctions but all the food that is left over from the event gets donated as well. So even though the ticket price is a bit steep ($150 without a discount code), it’s all going to a good cause.

We arrived a little late since I dropped dinner off for hubs beforehand. Once we got there, the place was already pretty hoppin’. That didn’t stop Cheyanne from finding her soulmate within 30 seconds of walking in the door.

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Sparkly things and wine is all she needs to be happy.

Michelle (and her husband Dan) came out this year too. She arrived early to eat and drink all the things, so by the time I got there she was nice and juiced up and led Cheyanne and I straight to the Tito’s Handmade Vodka booth like any good friend would.

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Those Tito’s drinks were delicious. I know you’re thinking, “Paula just likes booze” which is true, but I went back for seconds. I would have gone for thirds but the lady there did not mess around with the pours and I had to get home in a way that did not involve crawling.

Cheyanne and I made our way around the ballroom to check out the different restaurants. Since Michelle and Dan had already been there for an hour, they told us the best booths to hit up. I gotta say, the food this year blew away the food from last year in my opinion. (Warning: unappetizing dark pictures ahead.)

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Steak so tender you could cut it with a plastic fork and mashed potatoes from Capital Grille. It was the first thing I ate and by far the best thing of the night. I will definitely be trying out that restaurant.

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Probably the best scallop I’ve ever had, short ribs, and a vanilla cake from Shingle Creek.

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Calamari, also from Shingle Creek. It was the cup that a kept on giving because there was pasta on the bottom. Genius.

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Fancy mozzarella with something I was sure I was going to hate on top, but loved. I wish I could remember where this was from. This is why you don’t blog two weeks later.

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More short ribs from another place I can’t recall. I’m not even a fan of short ribs but this was amazing  It was so good that I thought they should have left off the toast, which is weird because I think bread makes everything better. This is the one time in the world when it didn’t.

I stopped taking pictures at some point because it was proving too difficult to balance a drink, food, and camera (life is hard) so a lot of good stuff went unpictured, including a crazy delicious fried green tomato BLT from BB King’s Blues Club and a bartender machine where you program the drink you want from a touch screen. I didn’t get a picture of the bartender machine but I did get a picture of Dan and I which is just as good.

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Worth it, I think.

I’m still doing the low sugar thing but I did try several desserts. The dessert area was a complete cluster compared to last year’s dessert carousel. This is the “line” I was standing in.

I almost gave up I was waiting so long but I persevered because dessert is my homeboy. I gotta say, I wasn’t too impressed this year. I don’t know if that’s the new, picky, low sugar me talking or if it was actually the desserts but I could only find one I really liked. Taste of the Nation must have been looking out for my waistline this year.

If I could make any suggestion, it would be to go back to last year’s dessert set-up or add a second dessert booth. Even jammed-packed, last year was way faster to get through and less frustrating.

Despite the dessert area, I think this year’s event was much better than last year. It’s like all the food was kicked up a notch. It’s nice to know they keep getting better. I had a great time and I’m thankful once again to be one of the media bloggers for the event. Time to start saving my pennies for next year. :-)

Everybody’s Working for the Weekend

Things have been busy lately. Real busy. Besides the regular stuff (job, marathon training, living the dream), hubs and I had a one-weekend deadline to paint our rental house that was completely trashed by the renters. Imagine living somewhere for three years and never cleaning or dusting anything. Then imagine dirt, fingerprints, food, and strange liquid in places on the walls in which you did not know those things could reach and you may have half an idea of how gross it was.

The kitchen was probably the worst. Besides needing to scrub all the cabinets, we also had to scrub the walls before painting them. The drip pans were completely black, which ok, that can happen when you cook a lot, but underneath were so, so, so many dead maggots.

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Kiefer

I think food fell through the drip pans, maggots made their way to that food, and then the renters cooked again and killed all the maggots with the heat. Just writing that grosses me out but it did lend itself to a Lost Boys gif so it’s not all bad.

On Saturday morning, I ran 12 uneventful miles. Unless you count the fact that I ran with Michelle’s running buddy, Tyler, for the first time and had to poop in the bushes. So I suppose it was eventful for him. The run was also faster than our normal long runs by about 45 seconds per mile so perhaps the need to poop has its advantages.

On Sunday, we worked on the house from 8:30am – 11:30pm. Our only breaks were to pick up fast food or go to Home Depot, so I got a pretty sweet set of cankles from being on my feet all day.

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I had literal ankle muffin top when I was standing. Hubs even mentioned how flushed I looked. Oh you know that’s just my crazy blood working extra hard to circulate through my body.

We ended up taking  Monday off of work because we couldn’t finish in time. So we had an extra long weekend of painting and cleaning and being generally disgusted with how our house was treated. Ten hours later, we were done around 9:45pm and beat-ass tired. Damn, I appreciate painters now. I hated doing all the work but we did it for half the price of hiring a painter. We even think the kitchen turned out better than when we lived in the house which is super annoying.

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Anyway, now it’s time to do all the things at home that got neglected over the weekend. I swear this full-time job thing really gets in the way. Being an adult is hard.

Except for the 20-miler I have planned Saturday morning, I will be doing absolutely nothing this weekend and liking it.

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P.S. If you understand my post title, rest assured you are old.

By the Numbers

Numbers. I like them.

1. The gas station by my house sells pizza super early in the morning.

That was the only good part of my 16-miler last weekend. The good news is I didn’t have any calf or shoulder pain. The bad news is I had a new hip/glute pain. It’s always gotta be something, right? Training started out great but now my long runs are getting worse by the week. I did more walking in the last three miles than running, so I’m not sure that’s good news for the 18-miler I have scheduled tomorrow morning.

2.  I’ve been trying out some new running fuel.

Usually I eat PB&Js on long runs since it’s the only thing that agrees with my stomach, but since Hammer Nutrition is really low in sugar, I’m hoping I can find something to interchange with my PB&Js. (No, this isn’t an ad. This is me trying to not poop while running.)

During my last marathon, I ate two PB&Js (1/4 at a time) before the thought of them made me want to barf, so I hope this will help me not get that feeling. So far I’ve tried the Perpeteum Solids which worked fine but they took a while to chew. I just ordered the regular Perpetueum (maybe it’s a drink? I couldn’t tell online) and some gels. I’m hoping they are in the mail today because I need them for tomorrow.

3.  I saw Guardians of the Galaxy.

I know, along with everyone else in the world. I was prepared to hate it because the trailer did nothing for me, plus I hate talking animals and there is that whole raccoon deal. I don’t think talking animals are cute, I think they are stupid and they make me stabby. I could never watch Babe for this reason, but I digress. With that all said, I thought the movie was great and the raccoon was kinda, sorta funny and not annoying at all. Definitely in the top 5 best superhero movies for me.

4.  Last weekend, I went out for an annual ladies night with some of my favorite people.

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This year
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2012

 

I’m starting to mourn my long hair, I have to admit.

It was a fun time. There was pre-drinking, there was bar hopping, there was Cheyanne winning eight lemon drop shots in a twerking contest.

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On a side note, Cheyanne complains she’s not on my blog enough, so I hope she’s happy now.

Ok, back to ladies night. There was Michelle rubbing her boobs on my back.

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It was pretty much everything one could ask for in an annually planned ladies night. The most important part of the night however, is that I got into several clubs and bars with my driver’s license picture looking like this.

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I have hubs to thank for that. Never leave your license unattended. That is the lesson here. And seriously, bouncers took one look and were all, “Yep! That’s you!” WTF.

5.  Hubs and I finished season 1 of The Fall last night.

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I know one of you recommended this show to me, so thanks! I really liked it. Season 1 is only five episodes so it’s low commitment. The serial killer in the show is the new Christian Gray. When I saw the trailer for 50 Shades, I thought he wasn’t cute enough for the role, not that I’ve read the book or will ever see the movie (because porn still exists and porn is always better) but I have opinions about it anyway that everyone must listen to. I think Jamie Dornan is much cuter in The Fall (and kinda looks like he could be Chris Pratt’s brother), so take that for what it’s worth because he plays a serial killer.

Since we are still a month away from our normal shows coming back for the fall season, we started Firefly. No, I have never seen it nor have I ever been interested in watching it even though Joss Whedon is my homeboy. Only time will tell if I have the 13-episode patience for a space western. Space western. Honestly. Those words should not go together.

6.  Pants turned 5!

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We usually don’t feed her a lot of fruit because rabbits don’t digest sugar well, but she got extra birthday treats including a piece of banana with a little peanut butter on it. She ate that while pretending she’s a lop ear. I must say, she doesn’t look a day over four.

What movie did you think you’d hate but ended up loving? There are so many and it’s usually ones hubs guilts me into watching, like Lilo and Stitch. I thought that movie looked like a piece of crap and I was crying like a baby halfway through when Stitch got lost.

Marathon Training in July

So, marathon training. That’s still happening. I’ve been meaning to update more regularly but I’m always so busy with something else, like watching four seasons of Archer and live-tweeting Sharknado 2.

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Seriously. Did anyone watch that? It was all I dreamed it could be and more.

Anyway, things have been going pretty well on the running front, all things considered. My calf issue was over until it wasn’t. On my 14-miler a few weeks ago, I jumped a curb and felt a little twinge again. The pain wasn’t terrible and I didn’t need to stop but it also didn’t feel good. So, I pushed August’s calf raking to last week and things seem to be back to normal. I also had the massage therapist work on my shoulder because that pain has been back since I started wearing my CamelBak again. Whoever said running is free can kiss my ass because this crap is expensive. That massage was $25 short of a new pair of running shoes. Luckily, I just don’t know what to do with it all.

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The only thing that makes me feel better about dropping money I don’t have is that the massage was good. Really good. And so, so helpful. Usually I go to massage therapists and think hub’s massages are 10x better. This guy is worth it, so I guess I don’t feel like it was wasted.

I also did a Crossfit workout a couple weeks ago, on a Monday, that made me crazy sore all week long. In case you’re looking for a workout that will make you think twice about wanting to stand up or sit down or stand idlely.

4 rounds:

  • 400m on the rower
  • 50 squats with the bar (45lbs)
  • 25 forward lunges
  • 25 backward lunges
  • 25 stiff-leg dead lifts with the bar (45lbs)

I swear my trainer told me he was going “lighter” before he gave me this workout since we weren’t using any significant weight. I could barely move for two days and I was still sore by my run on Saturday. I think my trainer feels bad because I’ve been getting some easier workouts since that one which I have been more than okay with.

Last weekend was supposed to be a 16-miler but Brad wasn’t able to run. I suppose I could have run on my own but I’m not that motivated so I slept in. I didn’t even know what to do with my Friday night.

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Oh, right. Yes I did.

We changed our 16-miler to this weekend and next weekend’s 10-miler is now 18 so we won’t have a drop in mileage for a few weeks. High mileage = 3am wake-ups to beat the sun because we usually walk a mile or more of all our long runs. #noshame

Since I’m not on Daily Mile anymore, I’m tracking my shoe mileage on a note app on my phone. That’s working pretty well.

Yes, I’m a spoiled brat with three pairs of running shoes. I’m hoping I won’t need to buy new ones until after this running season because I hate changing shoes in the middle of training.

This time around, I’m also tracking all my runs and paces with a calendar to check my improvement over the months and to be able to look back and do it again if I kill this race. (The c’s are crossfit days.)

That’s assuming I’ll run another marathon after this year which is unlikely because…

I skipped a few runs because of calf pain and unexpected schedule changes. I used to beat myself up over missing runs and now I couldn’t care less. I’m following my plan about 85% and I think it’s making training way more enjoyable this time around.

By the Numbers

I couldn’t log into my blog on my home internet for several days because of some server-side error with my host. Then the firewall at work was raised to Defcon 5 so blogging was out there too. Not that I’d ever blog at work because that would be wrong.

What I’m saying is, I have been denied blogging for too long and now I have a lot random stuff to talk about:

1. After many, many years of “putting it off” (a.k.a., being lazy), I decided to go back to school.

I’ve been accepted to the Instructional Systems Design Master’s program at UCF and I’m registered for my first, very expensive class. This works out perfectly because I’ve been looking for something to do with a bunch of 24-year olds that will make me feel even more ancient than I already am. I hope to be done with the program before I’m in adult diapers, or shortly thereafter. I’m flexible. My work offers tuition reimbursement so the plan is to get smarter without getting poorer. More poor? I don’t know words. So obviously I need to learn more of them.

2. I feel like this has been a crappy summer for TV, so hubs and I have been getting our monies worth out of Netflix. He decided we should watch Archer.

I was not loving season 1. It wasn’t bad but I also didn’t want to keep watching. Luckily, Seasons 2 and 3 got much better. I feel like a horrible person for laughing at most of the jokes because they are just wrong but then I remember that I’m running a race for charity so that karma thing should all even out.

3. Is anyone watching The Strain? I’ve been looking forward to it for months because I loved the book, but the first episode was just terrible. The acting. My God, the acting. So, so bad. Also, I’m having a really hard time accepting that this guy:

Is the same person as this guy from House of Cards:

The second episode was much better so the jury’s still out on this one. I’ll pretty much watch anything at this point because I need a new show.

4. I’m on Day 30 of no sugar. Screw you, sugar. You don’t own me!

Everything is going well. I’m still 5lbs down and I think I’m going to go another two weeks because my trainer promised me a particular gourmet cupcake at the end of the month if I did and I will do anything for a free cupcake. So, I’ll update you all in another week or so. Also, I apologize to sugar for saying I made it my bitch. I didn’t mean it and I still love you.

5. Finally, this week I will be myself again on Facebook. SEE YA, “Rhonda!”

Running So Far

It’s only been three weeks, but I gotta say marathon training has been going pretty well so far. I haven’t pooped my pants or cried once, plus my calf issue seems to be officially better. Knock on wood.

I had my calves raked finally. It felt like it  sounds, but surprisingly hurt less than when my trainer tried to work the knot out. I’ve never had a sport’s massage so I’m not sure what the difference is, but I imagine raking is similar. Basically, the massage therapist put lot of pressure on my calf with his thumb starting at my ankle and working up vertically to the back of my knee. I guess that’s the “raking” part but there was also deep, horrible massaging involved. If massaging is what you want to call it.

Ever since that massage, my long runs and speed runs have been pain-free and mostly delightful. Of course, my shoulder is still hurting so I think next month I’ll get a “massage” there as well. I plan to get one every month until the race just to be safe because my luck this year is leaning toward the shitty side.

Speaking of luck, I also managed to twist my ankle last Friday night in front of some dude talking on his cell and the window of an extremely packed restaurant. I didn’t fall but instead groped at the air awkwardly until I corrected myself. I looked back where I tripped and saw nothing that would have caused it, so that was embarrassing. I thought I was ok because I wasn’t limping or hurting afterwards but I woke up that night to extreme throbbing pain. I had a long run in the morning, so I texted Brad to tell him I might not make it. Then I took some aspirin, iced my ankle, and went back to sleep with it elevated on some pillows. I woke up feeling great which I found very suspicious and I proceeded to run a very cautious and pain-free 12-miler.

Dodged that bullet. Sheesh. I swear my body doesn’t want me to run this marathon.

I have 14 miles planned in the morning and then I have a date with a pretzel bacon cheeseburger from Wendy’s in the afternoon. I’ll be going to bed early. I need beauty sleep so I look good for my date.

That Time I Quit Sugar

I love sugar. I am not exaggerating when I say I have dessert after every meal (yes, even breakfast). I don’t always eat a giant cupcake. Sometimes it’s half a donut, a small cookie, a couple of Peeps, or a piece of Dove chocolate, but it adds up throughout the day to a lot of crap. Of course, when I eat a lot of desserts, I “make up for it” by eating the lowest calorie, lowest carb, highest protein meal I can find. So the “real” food I eat can be minimal. (It can also be a lot, let’s get real. I’m no skinny minnie.)

I’ve been hearing a lot of stories lately of people quitting sugar and losing weight. Quitting sugar sounds terrible, but sheer morbid curiosity made me look up how much sugar I eat on a daily basis.

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It was 400-500 calories a day. For those not counting, that is 1/3 of my daily food. I can’t decide if that’s sad or impressive.

I don’t talk about my weight a lot on the blog but I’ve been trying to lose 10 lbs…for three years. I’ve only gained weight so obviously I’ve been pretty committed to reaching that goal.

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So I decided to quit sugar because what the hell.

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I love that that gif exists.

Besides being curious to see if I could last more than two days, I wanted to see what would happen other than my likelihood of committing murder increasing. The plan: cut all desserts (not all sugar) except for one a week. I still eat fruit, peanut butter, and sauces with sugar, like ketchup. Cutting 500 calories of sugar a day means I need to eat more regular food to make up for it, so I’m also eating bigger meals.

It’s been 18 days, so here’s how it’s going so far:

Day 1:
I didn’t want sugar all day until after dinner and then I wanted it like whoah. I ate half an apple. It was meh. Apples are not ice cream sandwiches, which is what I would have had.

Day 2:
I wanted something sweet all. damn. day. I went to the grocery store during my lunch break at work to buy some blueberries for something sweet. I ate them and pretended they were blueberry donuts. It didn’t work and the whole day sucked.

Day 3:
I didn’t crave anything all day at work. After dinner, I wanted something sweet. Hubs ate ice cream and I asked for a bite and then caught myself. He laughed because I couldn’t eat all his ice cream. (Psh, like I would do that.) After Crossfit, I made a chocolate protein smoothie with half a banana and that helped my sweet tooth.

Day 4:
Again, no cravings in the morning. Although, I have taken a liking to Diet Snapple and all its aspartamey goodness. It was Michelle‘s birthday, so we stopped for 4 Rivers gourmet cupcakes after her birthday lunch. I shared one. It was delicious, but I didn’t feel like I needed it and kinda wish I had waited till later in the week when I really wanted something. Later that night, I wanted something sweet again but watched hubs eat ice cream instead which was just as good. (No it wasn’t.)

Day 5:
Today I’m down 1.5 lbs. I’m not sure I attribute that to no sugar. Usually I gain weight on the weekend and lose it during the week, however I usually work out more so it was surprising. I skipped both my weekly runs and both of my Crossfit workouts were really easy in comparison to usual. Still craving sweets in the evening.

Day 6:
There are times throughout the day when I want sweets, but I usually ask myself if I’m hungry or if I just think it will taste good. Usually it’s the later which made me realize how much I eat when I’m not hungry. Went out for drinks which took my mind off sweets. Ahh booze. You do amazing things.

Day 7 – 10:
Again, I always want sweets in the evening. I tell myself that after my workout, I can have a chocolate/banana protein shake. When it comes time to actually have the shake, I usually don’t want it anymore or am too lazy to make it. Lazy finally pays off.

Day 11:
The first day I didn’t want dessert. All hail day 11!

Day 12:
That didn’t last long. I wanted dessert all day. Instead I had a sandwich.

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Day 13 – 18: Ok, I got a little tired of writing down how I was feeling each day but during these days, I was finally noticing I wanted sweets less. I didn’t have my one dessert during week two because I didn’t feel like anything was worth it. I did have three sips of hub’s vanilla shake if you want to count that.

A few changes I’ve noticed:

  • I eat what I want now. I order the cheeseburger or rice bowl on the menu (instead of the salad) and I’ve had pizza at midnight on both weekends.
  • I don’t feel guilty about anything I eat.
  • I stopped watching carbs but most days they are around the same grams per day as when I was watching them.
  • I’m down about 5 lbs and I notice a few of my skirts fit more loosely.
  • I’m in a better mood. It’s weird. I pride myself on being bitchy. ;-)
  • I feel really good. I don’t want to kill kittens in the morning when I wake up and I don’t have those dips of being really tired at work.

My goal is to make it 30 days and see how I feel after that. I don’t plan to cut all sugar from my diet so maybe next I’ll work on that Diet Coke habit that just got worse when I quit sugar. Can’t win ‘em all.

Have you ever quit sugar? How long do you think I can last? (Don’t answer that.)

A Decent Run and a Good Cause

I mentioned that marathon training started last weekend. I met up for my first long run with my training bud, Brad, on Saturday. I guess the run went ok for my first 10-miler in three months. My shoulder was hurting again (it’s been a year since that’s bothered me), my calf ached for miles 5-10 because of all the uneven pavement and brick, it was face-of-the-sun hot, and the humidity made breathing suck but, I didn’t wish for actual death so I’m going to consider that one a win.

Since my calf is still the bain of my existence, my Crossfit trainer recommended a massage guy to me that “rakes” calves. I don’t know what “raking” calves means and I’m scared to look it up. Raking anything sounds terrible.

I finally made an appointment, which I’ve put off for a month because I know it’s going to hurt and I’m a big baby. Why can’t problems just disappear if you ignore them? I would rather get a pap smear if that tells you how much I don’t want this “massage” but I would also rather not limp the marathon. So, I sucked it up. I’m tempted to live tweet the massage so we can see what new swear words I invent.

You probably know by now that I’m running Chicago in support of the American Heart Association. Well, I’m also supporting another charity event – the Taste of the Nation Orlando - which raises money for the Share our Strength’s efforts to end childhood hunger. This is the same event that Michelle and I supported last year.

Back in the days of long hair and new boobs. This year I’ll support them with short hair and old boobs.

This is also the event in which I ate and drank my face off and posed with food.

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Ok, that’s all events but this one has all sorts of different food and drinks from awesome restaurants in the Orlando area. Plus, everything that is left over is donated so nothing is wasted.

Taste of the Nation Orlando is running its final discount code. So if you’re in the Orlando area, you’d like to support a great cause, and want to test the limits of your stomach and liver with me, you can get $10 off your ticket through the 11th. (Buy tickets with this link.)

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The deets:

2014 TASTE OF THE NATION ORLANDO
WHEN:
Saturday, August 9, 2014
6:45 p.m. – 10:00 p.m.

WHERE:
Orlando World Center Marriott
8701 World Center Dr., Orlando

Now, who knows what raking calves is and what am I in for?

I’m Sorry Sugar

I have been super busy lately. Busy watching TV and neglecting social obligations! (High five?) Well, neglecting this blog for sure. It even went down for a few days when my web host’s server was hacked. But no one noticed - including myself until well into day 2.  Anyway, it’s back up so I can tell you the important things like how I finished season 2 of Orange is the New Black. Hubs made me stay up until 2am on a school night just to watch the last three episodes. If there’s anything I love more than TV, it’s sleep. So trust me when I say that was not my choice.

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And because animals falling asleep are adorable.

I need a duck and a meercat.

I loved season 2 as much as season 1 but I think it took 3-4 episodes to get going. Those first episodes didn’t have any direction, which really bothered me, because my entertainment bar is set too high apparently.

Then I finished season 2 of Orphan Black. On demand is a beautiful thing. I didn’t really care for the finale, but then again I didn’t really care for the season 1 finale either. It’s still a great show and you should watch it so we can talk about it.

Now I’m moving on to season 8 of Weeds. Where have I been that I didn’t know Weeds ended two years ago?

After Weeds, I will be out of shows to watch so I’ll either need to find something new or do something with my life.

Last weekend, hubs threw a pool party at the house for his work peeps because he’s an appreciative guy like that. He set up the whole thing, cleaned the house for weeks, picked up some BBQ catering, and spent the whole party making frozen pina coladas and margaritas for everyone. I did nothing. Ok, I helped in the only department in which I am useful – booze and desserts. I made this s’mores dessert.

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It was delicious and just so bad for you. You could feel a future heart attack with every bite. I did use fat free Cool Whip, so I guess it was kinda healthy. Plus, Cool Whip is basically dairy and dairy has protein, which is good for you. Logic.

I also made these “swimming pool” blue-raspberry Jell-O shots with coconut vodka.

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I know. Adorable. But it doesn’t end there. I also made these giant “beach” Jell-O shots.

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I’m quite the hostess. It’s true.

The sweets kept on coming as people arrived. My friend, Jamie, made boozy pudding pops with Kahlua that were pretty amazing and these roasted s’mores shots. I repeat, roasted. s’mores. shots.

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Basically I ate sugar all day long. I’m not proud. Well, I kinda am proud because it was impressive, but no. It was bad news. It made me reasses my eating habits because the party was not a one-time thing. I eat a lot of crap. So after the party, I decided to quit sugar.

I know.

I know.

Sugar is the the reason I exist so don’t think I’m happy about it. It’s only been 8 days and I want to make it to 30, which is like a year in Paula time. So we’ll see. I’ll write more on my complete misery without sugar in a week or so. The good news is my work twin, Cheyanne, quit sugar with me so it makes my heart happy to know she is miserable too.

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I’m definitely drunk there.

Oh and lastly, marathon training officially started Saturday with a hot 10-miler and an early wake-up. I will miss my sleep-ins and leisurely runs at the gym while watching bad TBS movies. Now that training started, I’ll be updating my FB page a little more than usual with running bitching updates since the blogging thing seems to happen once a week these days.

 

 

That Time Jimmy Fallon and I Had a Moment

I think it was more my moment than Jimmy’s but we’ll say it was ours.

Yesterday, hubs and I went to see a taping of The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon at Universal Studios.

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Jimmy is filming in Orlando this week and once I found out, a lot of internet stalking was involved in getting tickets because JIMMY. I just love him. Originally I scored tickets to the Monologue Rehearsal, but angels descended and I was able to get tickets to see the show instead (way preferable but I’ll take Jimmy however I can get him).

We got to Universal early and waited in line for our tickets.

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Even though this girl went the day before and told us we didn’t have to be there early, we got there around 8:30am just to avoid stress or inadvertantly being rushed. That worked out well, because we didn’t hit traffic even in morning rush hour, met up with our friends, Teri and Greg, who were also going to the show, and got our tickets easily.

Well, mostly easily. We waited in line for about an hour and a half for the ticketing area to open and it was HOT. Like, no breeze Florida shitty hot. So we came prepared with umbrellas while the other suckers baked in the sun.

After we got our tickets, we had almost all day to wander around the Universal Citywalk area. So we had lunch at Antojitos. And by lunch, I mean margaritas.

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Then we stopped for some frozen yogurt and shopped around for things we didn’t need – like moustache ice cube trays. (I’m serious. Hubs bought that.) Eventually, we met up with my friend (and boss!), Jackie, and her husband who were also going to the show.

A few margaritas and shots happened and then it was close to showtime, so we lined up to get into the studio (no pictures allowed – sniff) and found our seats.

Ok, so I don’t want to diminish the fun of the day here. I got to take a day off work in the middle of the week, laugh all day, have margaritas, hang out with hubs and some great friends, and see my man Jimmy in the flesh (so cute!). BUT, I have to say I was a little disappointed in the show.

When we were seated, we got really pumped up by a video montage of Jimmy’s hilarious skits and some improve by Seth Herzog (a comedian that’s one of Jimmy’s writers.) So I was ready for a great show. The show started with the monologue, of course, which was ok. Then there was a mascot dance-off that was super lame, like they were trying to fill time but couldn’t think of anything better. Rosario Dawson was the guest, and unfortunately, there was nothing interesting about her interview. (She replaced Tracy Morgan after his accident.) Jeff Musial, the animal guy, was the second guest. I don’t know anything about him but he was the best part of the show. He’s funny and played off of Jimmy well. He brought out a giant albino alligator, which was cool, and an elephant that ended up pissing all over the stage.

That was funny, but probably not to Jimmy’s poor crew who had to clean it up. During commercial breaks, The Roots played while Jimmy talked to the crew. The Roots were amazing. Jimmy was great too (of course, because he can’t not be) and didn’t make any mistakes, although he did have to do one of his introductions four or five times.

The musical guest (Fun.) didn’t play until later that night on the Main Plaza Stage inside Universal, so the show was only about an hour long. It just seemed to go so fast. I guess I was expecting more but I can’t really complain over a free ticket. Either way, you can tell a lot of work is put into the show and the behind-the-scenes stuff is still cool to see. I know I’m complaining, but I’m really glad I went. I didn’t love the guests, but maybe that’s a good thing because if Kristen Bell or Amy Poehler was there, I would be dead from a happiness heart attack. And then how would this tale be told?

After the show, we exited into the park where Fun was doing a sound check. They sounded awesome and I’m not even a fan of Fun (ha) but they weren’t going onstage for real until after dark and a two hour wait was too long for our old, tired asses. We were wiped out from spending 11 hours in the park. So we walked around a little with Teri and Greg and then headed home.

Overall, I had a great day with friends and I got to do something I’ll probably never have the chance to do again. Totally worth it.