Off to the Valley

Heading Phoenix way to hang out with family. Mom is back at my sister’s house, so will visit and possibly bring her dog back up here if Mom is going to stay there a while.

Hey, it’s also Super Bowl Sunday tomorrow. I can watch it on Sue and Larry’s big-screen TV. Fingers will be crossed, my Larry Fitgerald jersey will be on, and my hopes will be high. Please, oh Football Gods, do not let my hopes be dashed.

Wednesday Night

I’m spending my Wednesday night in front of the TV watching Eagle Eye. It’s rather silly, isn’t it?

Earlier I had my crossfit bootcamp class. I had to do 40 Burpees (movie). I found them incredibly difficult to do. There’s something about any jumping move with my feet that my body objects to. Anyway, I think I did close to 40 of the Burpees, but I kept losing my count.

I also tried something new today: a 24-hour fast. Let’s just say that I didn’t like it. It lasted from 4:00pm yesterday to 4:00 today. I’ve read about intermittent fasting and thought I’d give it a try. Ha! It’s embarrassing to have your stomach grumble during the staff meeting.

So, back to the big finale of Eagle Eye. Let’s hope it offers more excitement than my P.E. class.

Pushing Myself

My body must be adapting to my workouts. I only felt like jelly for about 20 minutes instead of all night. Of course, tonight’s class had me gasping for breath. I have to admit that even as I’m cursing the activities in the crossfit bootcamp class that I’m proud that I can plow my way through them.

Tonight we did a mini-Fran. Fran is the name of a Crossfit workout. It’s sets of Thrusters¬† and pull-ups. We don’t have the equipment in the bootcamp class, so it’s thrusters with dumbells and pushups. Imagine little old me (old being the operative word) forcing myself through these expercises. We had to do three sets — the first one of 21 thrusters then 21 pushups. Next was 15 of each. We wrap it up with nine each. That makes 45 of each. Me, doing 45 squats and pushups! We’d already done at least 10 squats to work on our form, plus at least five pushups, so I did quite the muscle workout.

The thing is that you have to do these at a hard pace. Thus, I was gulping for breath by the third round. You would think I would hate this, but it really does feel empowering to get through it. Let’s just see if I’m sore tomorrow. The more I do this, the less achy muscles I struggle with the next day.

Hey, I can’t help but be excited. I’m pushing my body in new directions and I’m enjoying it.

In Bruges review

When I wrote this review I didn’t expect the Academy (of Academy Awards fame) would nominate In Bruges for anything. The Golden Globes did give Colin Farrell a well-deserved Globe for his performance in this movie. And lo and behold! The Academy nominated Martin MacDonagh for Best Screenplay. So I am happily wrong about it not getting nominated at all. It did.

In Bruges is a good movie and out on DVD. Check it out. Here’s my review.

Finally Saw Slumdog Millionaire

I liked it. Slumdog Millionaire isn’t an epic, nor a serious biography, and it’s certainly not a movie that takes on serious social subjects, but it still managed to earn an Oscar nomination. Whether it’s a deserved nomination I don’t know. I still haven’t seen any of the other nominated films. Hey, I live in a town with only one theater with 11 screens.

I really enjoyed the movie. Though it takes place in India I can image it cast in Charles Dickens’ England. Orphans taking care of each other, love everlasting, and finally some luck coming the way of one of the characters. It’s a sweet movie that also offers suspense, drama, humor, and some breathtaking views of India. I’m glad I finally got to see the movie.

Good Week; Bad Week

The Arizona Cardinals winning the NFC Championship was phenomenal. Seeing Barack Obama sworn in as the 44th president was great. Feeling healthy and active is exceptional. Unfortunately, the week hasn’t been made of just those things. Some things are sucking the big one.

My mom refuses to be active. Hearing that she is getting weaker and unable to do much is hard to accept. My poor sister is feeling so down as she is the sibling taking care of Mom. There’s still hope that Mom can discover the will to do what needs to be done to get herself active again. We’re hoping.

The other bad thing? Budget cuts. Arizona is hurting badly. As an employee of the state of Arizona and working at one of the state universities I don’t expect much from our state legislature, especially now that Janet Napolitano left to take charge of the Homeland Security. We now have a governor who is liking many of the other conservative yahoos in our legislature: a tax cut aficionado and higher-education hater. The announced budget cuts to the state universities total $600 million over the next 18 months. Lovely.

Our department could have possibly survived those cuts with lots of belt-tightening, but what really hurts us is how we are funded. Most of the funding is based on a program from state sales taxes. Arizona’s economy is spiraling downwards and the projected funds are disappearing fast. To make ends meet we are voluntarily cutting our hours. So instead of a 40-hour a week paycheck, I’m now getting a 38-hour paycheck. We’re now hearing that we may have to do something more drastic. It could end up as a non-voluntary eight hours a week cut. Goodbye discretionary funds for fun.

If we have to do it, I can go back to scrimping again. It just pisses me off. I’ve been working hard at getting some old nasty debt paid off and I’m not close, but I’ve made tons of progress. Now I’ll have to cut back on the debt payments, which means a longer time frame to pay them off, and living without a large amount of savings. That’s all I want — more than $1000 in my savings. I want to put more towards retirement too. Of course, I’m lucky. I have $1000 in savings, a regular paycheck, a financial plan, and I’ve seen that debt go from five figures to four. There are no debt collectors calling at all hours, no maxed out credit cards, no children to clothe and feed (though the way I keep losing weight I’m going to need some funds for clothes in smaller sizes!).

Anyway, good week; bad week. I like the good, hate the bad, but life is more than just a lifetime of average weeks.

Moonlighting

Another Crossfit Bootcamp class tonight and I’m feeling it. Lots of squats, some lunges, and then doing Tabata squats (maximum number of squats for 20 seconds, then 10 seconds of rest repeated eight times) have my legs in jelly mode. Okay, not so bad as last week, but I’ll be sore tomorrow.

So, after cooking dinner (buffalo chili) and starting some chicken stock simmering on the stove, I put in a DVD. My local library has the DVDs to Moonlighting,one of my old TV favorite shows.¬† Seeing a young Bruce Willis with hair makes it an interesting historical experience. I used to love this show. I’m still finding some of it funny.

I also have to say that back in the 1980s I wanted to dress like Maddie Hayes, Cybill Shepherd’s character. Watching the show now does kind of dim that desire, but I do love the pastel colors that she always wore.

Here’s a video from the season two opener: