Showing posts from 2012

In preparation for the end of the world...

12/20/12 I don't know about you, but I'm really putting in an A effort to prepare for the end of the world. This morning I went to the Zombie WOD (6am) and completed the "End of the World" WOD (although we later figured out that it was a little early since the world is going to end US time, not Japan time. Still, better to be early than late to something like this. After work today I went to get my final Cocok's pedicure of 2012. Festive of course. How can one focus on the impending doom of the world ending when there are happy snowmen and snowflakes on their tows. I find the task daunting, I instead am thinking about hot cocoa with marshmallow mountains. My final step to prepare for the end of the world is this. Printing my boarding pass. That's right folks, I'll be airborne when the said incident is scheduled to occur, in transit to the US. If you ask me, this seems like the best place to be, as far away from the mass hysteria and gathering of c

Rum Raisin Kit Kats

12/18/12 Special thanks to my dear friend Natassia, I have a new flavor to add to the "collection"...Rum Raisin! Found somewhere in transit from mainland Japan and Okinawa!

Unlocking your iPhone (AT&T iPhone 4s in my case)

12/9/12 I'm shocked that it has taken me this long. Embarrassed even. But here it goes. I've been meaning to investigate the process of unlocking my US iphone for some time now and just haven't gotten to it. Until today. The purpose (for me) would be to have the ability to use it overseas when I travel for more than just a wifi device. So, if you are an AT&T customer and interested in the process here you go. It's simple and takes minutes: First you need to fill out a simple form on AT&T's website. You need basic account information and the IMEI number (this can be found by going to Settings then General then About) Form to request your iphone be unlocked Now you just patiently await AT&T to get back to you. They indicate they will get back to you within 7 business days And here is the link to check the status of your unlock request: Check your unlock request Best of luck saavy travelers! 12/15/12 *Update* Just received the email toda

Mileage points, elite status, and just traveling smart

12/1/12 It's no big surprise that I'm a bit of a mileage points ho. I'm a very dedicated United mileage member. I've attained the highest elite status with them (affording me upgrades on international flights, access to the elite lounges, and just a better all around travel experience) and I intend to keep it! Recently I discovered the process of elite status matching! How fabulous. So, if you have Elite status on United you can call some of the airlines and go through a process (some require fees) of getting your status matched with them. I'll provide the information here and where I had success. American Airlines Offers elite status matching (no cost) if you are a United 1k member with very little leg work. Just call 1-800-882-8880 and find your way to a customer service agent to request Elite Status Matching. They send you an email, you send the requested credentials (a screenshot of your recent United Account info, A copy of your United Mileage card, and

Black Friday in Tsuboya

11/23/12 cups and dishes Rather than flocking to the nearest Best Buy or Walmart (they don't even exist here, and if they did I still wouldn't be there!) I went running in the opposite direction of Americans! I ventured off to the Tsuboya Pottery Festival and Kokusai Street (note: nowhere near the BX madness!) chopstick holders Tsuboya became a pottery village because of the quality of the dirt (perhaps they call it clay, I'm no potter). Because of this crafters started settling here, and up popped this little village of amazing artisans. The Tsuboya Pottery Festival was hosted at a local school in the outside school yard. On a beautiful day this would have been wonderful to stroll around. Unfortunately today was less than "beautiful". It was rainy, and that combined with this wonderful clay/dirt resulted in my shoes getting little works of art formed on them. I look forward to scraping it off tomorrow when it finally dries! It was really neat to se

Barbells for Boobs...Round 2 as a Shogun

11/10/12 Barbells for Boobs is an amazing event that utilizes Crossfit to raise funds for mammograms for young men and women. We did Amazing Grace. 30 Clean and Jerks (135#/95#) for time. This exact time last year I was really getting started on my Crossfit adventure. In 2011 I used the 35# bar and added a 5# plate to each end. I struggled through the event, but finished with a time in the 6-7 minute range. Today, in 2012, I did the WOD prescribed, 95#. Wow, what a difference a year makes. Instead of struggling to put 45# overhead, I had doubled the weight. Yes there were struggles, but I never once overlooked the journey that I had gone through to get there. I couldn't have been happier to do this event again at Shogun Crossfit...some of the faces have changed, but the underlying spirit has not. It is like nothing else. As a team we did an amazing job fundraising, but it's not too late...we can still continue to raise funds...there is no limit to our goal and every

Lime makes everything better

11/8/12 So after several car mishaps I finally landed the cream of the crop... Now, you might recognize the style, this is the same model as my first car...but the color. Oh yes. In a sea of silver and white cars I assure you I never have a problem finding mine. The picture isn't that great (I took it as I was rushing to work and realized I had not yet shared this goldmine with my bloggies) and doesn't properly display the limeyness...

I'll stud you too

11/1/12 Well after feeling relatively successful with the little boy's shoes...I attacked my converse...I couldn't be happier with how they came out. Before After. So much! Everything is fair game right now for some serious studding! I did an older pair of low chucks this weekend (with shiny silver studs) and they came out fantastic! When I looked on line for pre studded converse the prices were ridiculous $150-$200 for some. I will tell you that on a site like you can get really great prices on Chucks (some for $20) and then if you go to Etsy you can find the metal studs for about $2 for 100 pieces. I used one pack of 100 for the high top shoes above and had some leftover. So for under $40 I was able to stud the shoes above. Much better than $150 or $200.

Custom kicks...oh yes I can!

11/1/12 So after spending way too much time on Pinterest, and then Etsy, and then eBay...I decided that I would try to make my own studded shoes. I wanted to stud my Converse to give them a custom flair. Looking on eBay and Etsy resulted in nothing impressive (other than the ridiculous amount of money people were charging for these shoes). Being a "non crafter" I thought that maybe this was out of my skill level. I'm happy to report after doing a custom pair of Vans for my favorite little 6 year old, that this was well within my abilities...and FAR cheaper than buying them! Plus, I might even admit that it was fun! Once you find the right studs and get a good method down, it's relatively simple, and not too time consuming. Up next are my Converse...just have to decide how studded I want them!

Another trip to Cocok's

10/24/12 So this post is a little late (and out of order)...but, better late than never! Before a weekend trip to the Keramas it only made sense to go and get my toes beautified by the lovely artists at Cocok's... It didn't come out exactly how I wanted it, but it's beautiful none the less!

Tokashiki Island

10/29/12 So finally after 3 trips to Okinawa, I finally made it to the Keramas! Last weekend for a quick little trip I ventured over to Tokashiki Island (1 hour give or take on the slow ferry and 30 minutes on the quick one). Tokashiki is beautiful. Where my hotel (Marine Village) was located was very isolated and there wasn't much to see or do other than the beach and beautiful water (tough life I know!). The hotel didn't even have wifi in the rooms (gasp) so it really forced me to disconnect and relax a little. Something that I now realize I haven't done in a really long time! I'm not much of a water person. I tend to dislike sea life, especially if it's anywhere near me...but I was hoping to see a sea turtle or two. Turns out you had to actually get into the water to see those. Damn. Perhaps next time I'll put on my big girl swim trunks and do the whole snorkeling thing (gulp). Tokashiki is beautiful and it was nice to get out and see something new

Barbells for Boobs

10/9/12 Just as I did last year, I will be participating in a fantastic event, Barbells for Boobs. I don't use my blog as a means for begging for money but for this non-profit I will absolutely make an exception. Please please please donate! It's an amazing cause and helps cover the cost of mammograms to those who can not afford them (men and women). I will be competing in an event to help raise funds for Barbells for Boobs held here at Shogun Crossfit on Okinawa, but you don't have to do the intense workout with me, nor do you have to travel all the way to Okinawa, I'm making it simple for below...donate. Please! Donate Here!

Sunday walk in the 'hood

10/7/12 I woke up with some very sore muscles from an intense week at Shogun solution, to take a nice walk through the neighborhood and down to the water to try to loosen things up and stretch them out. As far as my muscles are concerned the walk was a fail, but all other aspects of it were a major win. It was a beautiful day and it felt great to be outside soaking up some fantastic Okinawa sunshine!

Happy Friday!

10/5/12 Happy Friday... Here's how the conversation with the Japanese car rental company went (I'll spare you the lack of Japanese on my part and the minimal English on theirs): Me: The tire to my rental is flat Them: Can you change it and put the spare on Me: No (granted I know I'm not in the US, but damn...there's a reason I pay for ensure that I never EVER under no circumstances will be roadside changing a tire.) On hold for a while Them: Can you ask the hotel staff to change it for you (I should have prefaced this story by saying a coworker got a flat a few days ago and had to go through the EXACT same banter with them, and was denied by the hotel staff) Me: No On hold for a while Them: OK we will send someone out to change it. What I should also tell you is that two very small Japanese young women showed up and proceeded to change my tired in the garage (did this make me feel like less of a woman, hell no! I stick to my

First stop Cocok's

10/3/12 I wouldn't be living in Okinawa if I didn't have 10 little works of art on my feet. Today made it official...first (and definitely not last) visit to Cocok's for an out of this world Pedicure that will never be topped. NEVER EVER. In fact Cocok's has ruined pedicures for life for me. I don't even bother going in the states anymore because it just leaves me pissed off and disappointed. Feast your airbrushing here folks, all done by hand, and such microscopic detail...especially those baby toes! Ahh. Bliss.

Post Jelawat

9/30/12 The typhoon has passed, but not without leaving some pretty incredible damage to my immediate surroundings (and the rest of the island). I ventured out (had to find an appropriate exit to the hotel since the main lobby was completely blocked off) onto the property and then walked down and around Comprehensive Park (all in all about 4 miles). Took some photos of the damage and destruction as well as some more pleasant photos along the way...enjoy!

Welcome back to Okinawa, Much Love, Jelawat

9/29/12 Welcome back to's welcoming committee is none other than the Typhoon Jelawat. Jelawat was successful in making sure that I had sustained a natural disaster on each and every single one of my overseas assignments. This was is my first typhoon (Present tense because we are currently waiting for the back (and more powerful) half to come through. In the process of the typhoon the hotel lobby glass was blown out, we lost power, my toilet water was moving around like crazy, the building was shaking, no power=no AC=no bueno, and there was some water leakage into the hotel. What I was looking forward to most (being cooped up so I could catch up on sleep and fight the jetlag) was actually the exact opposite of what happened. Taken from my balcony-lobby destruction (hotel staff says these have never broken) The winds started to really stir up in the middle of the night (between 1 and 3 am) which is precisely when I lost my ability to sleep. Awesome, just whe

And so it begins...again!

9/19/12 That's right, it's that time again. Back to the land of paper cranes, perfect pedicures, fantastic people, and beyond amazing food. In the last two years, I have spent more time living in Okinawa than I have anywhere else. Crazy. I remember preparing for my first trip there. There were so many things going through my head. I was determined to see each and every landmark that I had so proactively researched online and in my travel book. I brought that same travel book with me in my carry on and referenced it throughout the flight. Bound and determined to leave no stone unturned in my upcoming adventure. I was squished in a coach seat for the entire duration of the trip, got minimal sleep (a product of discomfort and excitement), and was miserable for the first two weeks due to jet lag. I anticipate the jet lag being the same, it hasn't failed me yet, but the rest of the trip will be much different. This will be my third time to Okinawa, fourth time to Japan.

Zone it out...

4/6/12 It's been almost 3 weeks now of doing the Paleo zone diet and I can honestly say that it works! I was a complete non believer, I even said the words "I'll never do that, I don't have time, who weighs and measures their food?!". This girl does now...and this girl also has dropped some weight (fat) as a result. I feel much better and definitely feel stronger. Within the first week of zoning I was able to get a kipping pull up, something that I've struggled with for 5 months. I also was able to hold myself in the rings when before I jumped up there and my arms flew in every direction, but certainly didn't maintain any stability or hold me up. I can pull myself up on the rings to about armpit level, again, something I definitely couldn't do before. Perhaps this is all coincidence, but I tend to think that a tuned in diet is more to credit for these small successes in my CrossFit journey. Here is an example of my 3 block breakfast. Breakfast is a

CrossFit Level 1 Certification-Tomball

3/31/12-4/1/12 March was a crazy month, I went home for a week, came back and the the next weekend was in Ft Worth, then this weekend I went to my CrossFit Level 1 Trainer Certification course in Tomball (outside of Houston) TX. I can't say enough positive things about the whole experience. It really was amazing. A lot of information and movement tied into two days, but at the end of it you really were left feeling good about the task at hand. I learned more than I ever imagined I would, and I had the opportunity to meet and work with some really fantastic people. This week I add Matt Chan to my CrossFitter collection that I have unintentionally started in the last two weeks! I look forward to many more opportunities like this, it really is amazing learning from some of the best in the industry! The training consisted of two days of classroom lecture, small breakout groups, large breakout groups, some WOD's (Fran and a partner WOD), and the final piece a test that wa

CrossFit Tour Ft Worth

3/24/12 So things have gotten a little behind and my dear blog has suffered as a result. The long weekend is a perfect time to catch up on all of the things that I have neglected! Including my sleep! So the CrossFit Tour. I feel pretty fortunate to have been able to attend such a rad event with some of the coolest people I know! Coach Glassman was there to give a speech, he made a lot of great points, and also some disappointing comments with regards to the military community and focusing his attentions on children outside of the US rather than the millions within the US who also need and deserve the help from those willing to give it. Aside from there there were definitely some highlights...Great company, being among people who eat breath and sleep the same crazy life that you do, and Rich Froning and Dan Bailey The evening was spent at Billy Bob's in the Stockyards listening to some country artist who people seemed to enjoy. I have no idea who he was! All in all a fa

Metro Dash-Austin

2/25/12 This is how we crossed the finish line! So in true bad ass spirit, this weekend was jam packed with bruises, burpees, and most importantly my CFBL family who I love dearly! A group of us went to Austin to do the Metro Dash. Metro it was not, perhaps suburban dash or park dash would have been better names for the event. Regardless it was a blast and I wouldn't have traded that time for anything! We competed in groups of 2, Teresa, my fellow fierce b*tch, and teammate, Jess and Stephanie, Eric, Becky and Adriana, Jack and Cody (who won the Heros heat!), and our huge support team Ben, Ashley, Baby B, Chad, Anthony, and Jack's wife! After already doing the Crossfit Open 12.1 WOD twice, I was not looking forward to any burpee penalties (10 burpees per obstacle that you could not complete), so T and I decided that we would make it our mission to get through the course. We almost made it! A couple of obstacles got the best of us and we gave in to the burpees! Next up

Paleo (bison) tacos

2/26/12 It's everyone's favorite...taco night! Super easy (and quick) recipe for tacos...paleo style. I used grass fed bison because that's what I had but any meat would work. Paleo (bison) tacos: Ingredients two pounds grass fed bison (I used one pound because I'm cooking for myself, it left plenty for leftovers!) 1/2 onion 3 TBSP paprika (I used slightly less) 1 tsp chili powder 1 tsp crushed red pepper 1 tsp fresh cilantro Romaine lettuce hearts salsa/pico/avocado/bacon/whatever taco toppings you want! Directions cook up the onions and the meat separately. When the onions are finished cooking, put them aside When the meat is browned add the spices Stir in the cooked onions Assemble and enjoy!

Paleo Pizza

2/19/12 Reason 239402394802 why Paleo isn't that can make modifications and make just about anything that you used to eat before :) Being a bit of a fat kid at heart, paleo pizza is right up my ally! I choose to subscribe to the paleo school of thought that lets me eat bacon and pepperoni (I could read the few ingredients listed on the label, knew what they were, meat, so bam, paleo!). If you do not subscribe to this thinking...I'm sorry. Your loss. Just don't add it to the pizza! Dough before cooking Pizza w/toppings before baking Finished Product. Yum! Paleo Pizza Ingredients: 1/2 cup coconut flour (crust) 1 cup almond flour (crust) 1 tsp baking powder (crust) 4 eggs 3 TBSP oil (I used coconut) 1/2 cup coconut milk (the stuff in the can) pesto or your favorite tomato sauce (topping) Other topping ingredients (I used onions (lots!), peppers, and pepperoni) Directions: Preheat oven to 375 degrees Start by making the dough. In a

Paleo Banana Walnut Chocolate Muffins

2/19/12 So today I've lived in my kitchen...technically the truth since I live in a hotel and it's one big room, hard not to live in the kitchen with these accommodations. I digress. I whipped up a batch of Paleo Banana Walnut Chocolate Muffins. Given the chance to re-do this recipe I would probably reduce the amount of walnuts, and add another banana, they are really dense and I think another banana would help that. Paleo Banana Walnut Chocolate Muffins: Ingredients: 2 1/4 cups almond flour 2 ripe bananas (I suggest adding a third) 1/2 tsp baking soda 1 TBSP cinnamon 4 TBSP coconut oil 3 eggs 1-2 tsp vanilla 1 cup Enjoy Life chocolate chips 1 cup chopped walnuts (I would use less) Directions: Preheat oven to 350 degrees In a large bowl mash bananas with a fork add eggs, coconut oil, and vanilla, mix whisk to get rid of any large chunks In a smaller bowl combine the dry ingredients (almond flour, baking soda, and cinnamon) Slowly stir dry ingredien

Coffee (Paleo) Pot Roast

2/19/12 Before even starting to make my breakfast I was getting this heap of deliciousness ready! It does have to cook all day in the crock pot after all! Really how do you go wrong with beef (grass fed of course), coffee, and cooked onions?! You don't, that's the answer! Paleo Coffee Pot Roast: Ingredients: 3-5 lbs of chuck roast (I used 3.5 and it fit just right in my 4qt crock pot with the other stuff) onion sliced (I used two, I really like cooked onion!) garlic cloves peeled and smashed (I used 6-8, I will NOT be eating these, they are just for flavor!) Sea salt, pepper, and any other seasoning that you want to use for the meat brewed coffee (I used Starbucks VIA because it was what I had, I added 4 small coffee cups of it, it almost came to the top) 2 TBSP balsamic vinegar Directions: put sliced onions and garlic in the bottom of the crock pot. Season the meat (sea salt, pepper, and anything else) put the meat in the crock pot pour the coffee on t

The Most Amazing (Paleo) Pancakes Ever!

2/19/12 So it's Sunday again, the designated cooking/baking day for the week! Today I was really ambitious and had a list (way too long) of things to make! I decided that I needed some variety in my meals this week rather than eating the same thing every day for lunch! So for this blog entry I'll start with breakfast (my most favorite meal of the day, no questions asked!)...paleo pancakes! Amazeballs Paleo Pancakes: Ingredients: 3 ripe bananas 1/4 cup of creamy almond butter 3 eggs coconut flour (I added some to thicken up the mix, if you don't need/want it, don't add it! Directions: in a food processor/blender (or by hand if you're really ambitious) mix ingredients (sans coconut flour) if the mix is really watery than add some coconut flour to thicken it up (I didn't measure, just poured a small amount at a time) add any desired fruits to the batter for really tasty pancakes (I used blueberries!) Enjoy! I recommend doubling this recipe,

Paleo Choco Pudding

2/17/12 So it's really no secret among my family that I am a complete choco-holic. I love chocolate! So it should come as no surprise that I have been trying to find ways to incorporate paleo approved chocolate into my life! Tonight's recipe was a huge success (despite the major possibility for culinary failure!). Now, before I even include the recipe, just trust me. What sounds gross, and looks gross as you're putting it all together, actually all works really well together and makes a nice little cave-lady dessert! So, here it goes Choco Paleo Pudding: Ingredients: Avocados (I used 2 large) 1/2 cup cocoa powder 1/2 cup honey (buy local!) 1 tsp. vanilla 2 TBSP coconut oil Directions: Put all of the ingredients into a food processor (or if you're living on the road and in suitcases, a magic bullet or similar device (I have a Cuisinart version of this that actually has a blender sized canister that fits on it, yes I travel with this thing!). Blend t

Paleo Domestication

2/12/12 So today turned into an utter day of domestication. I'm not sure how it happened since I'm probably the least domestic person in existence. But, it at least gives me hope that I'm not a complete and utter failure in the kitchen (or in my case very small kitchenette with zero cooking utensils!) Here's what was on today's menu (I cook/bake on Sundays for the rest of the week since I have NO time during the week to do these things!): - Paleo Mocha Muffins - Paleo Spaghetti (squash) and sausage - Homemade sweet potato chips I have been craving a nice hearty dish so the spaghetti squash and sausage seemed like a perfect fit. I should note that I try not to use spaghetti squash often because in the Paleo world it's kind of a naughty food, found on the high-glycemic end of the spectrum. So, it's more of a treat than a staple! So, as promised, here are the recipes for today's culinary masterpieces! I should preface this by saying all of these we

RokFit Cyber Series Competition

2/11/12 After a weekend of tough WODs for the RokFit Cyber Series! So this post is about a week late, but I required some recovery time...and it took forever to upload the approximately 1 million photos that I took! The competition was my first and it was a blast! I couldn't have asked for a better group of people to have by my side through the experience! I placed 42nd overall and 16th in the scaled. I am currently wrapping up my third week of the Paleo Challenge and to be honest I don't feel any different than when I was doing my modified paleo (incorporating limited amounts of dairy, usually in the form of a Greek Yogurt). I've been told that I am slimming/toning but it's hard to tell when you see yourself daily. It's also hard to know if that's attributed to diet or hard work, or both. I'm certainly working out more here in Texas than I ever have, largely due to the Crossfit Box that I belong to, it's become family. Rather than dreading going

It's all about the shoes!

1/30/12 Current Crossfit Shoes So I've been crossfitting for about 4 months now...I'm in no way any kind of expert on the subject matter that I'm about to discuss, just thought that I would give my honest opinion on some of the shoes that I have used/currently use for Crossfit in the hopes that it will help others when making such important decisions. With that being said, the important decision shouldn't be which pair of shoes should I get, it should be how many pairs of shoes should I get?! I should also say that I have had a lot of problems in the past finding good shoes for exercise (not just Crossfit) because I have really high arches and often get plantar fasciitis. None of the shoes that I currently have have resulted in any plantar fasciitis. When I first started Crossfitting I was using Vibram Five Fingers (Komodo Sports). As much as I like these shoes, I found them to be my least favorite of all of the shoes that I have/have used. There is absolutel

Paleo Challenge 2012

1/22/12 Ok, so tomorrow is the big day, the start of the 2 month Paleo Challenge Crossfit Beyond Limits (best place on earth). I'm going to utilize my blog to keep track of my progress, meals, recipes, and other Paleo/Crossfit related stuff (since I haven't been doing much travel related blogging apologies!) I'm super excited for the challenge and definitely look forward to watching myself progress through the 2 months. The diet portion of this isn't too difficult for me since I already eat (mostly) Paleo...just have to cut out the Greek Yogurts that I have been eating as part of breakfast (a matter of convenience) and reduce some fruit intake...Let the games begin :) In preparation for the start tomorrow I spent today cooking/preparing for the week. Because I go in and do the WOD at 5am, I have almost no time to prepare/eat breakfast before leaving for work so I made a nice batch of Bacon Wrapped Eggs (I added spinach and onions to the mix) Bacon

Austin for the day

1/7/12 It couldn't have been a more perfect day for a little trip to Austin! The sun was shining, there was some good shopping to be done, oh and let's not forget the eating! One of the greatest things about being in Killeen is being so close to one of my favorite cities...Austin! It's only an hour away! After making my necessary stops (REI, Lululemon, and Book People) I ventured to the mecca of all of Austin...South Congress St. A stop at my favorite Coffee place (Jo's) for a Turbo and then some really great window shopping before meeting up with some fantastic company (thanks Owen and Kat!) Graffiti on the wall of Jo' favorite, it's kind of famous! Owen, Kat and I went to Hopdoddy for lunch. Great place, hip atmosphere. They use local ingredients, local meats...very delicious and very Austin! Based on the recommendation of Owen and Kat I was adventurous and went for the special "The Chupacabra" a goat burger (their friend is a goat