Friday, October 30, 2009

An Athlete After All?

I really don't have any trouble admitting my lack of athletic abilities. I accepted that I was more of a reader & writer than a sports star A LONG time ago. Understandably then, it always surprises me when people recruit me for some athletic event: i.e. playing on a kickball team or running a 5K. It almost always ends in disaster. (Look at MVP Announces Retirement if you don't believe me!)

After being "selected by the students" to play on the faculty team for the Teacher vs. Students Volleyball Fundraiser Game yesterday, it began to hit me: I am asked to do these things because I am FUNNY doing it. I'm not so convinced that this is a positive thing; however, I'm a good sport, so I signed on. Our team name was the MEAN MACHINE, and, in tribute to the 2005 movie The Longest Yard, we dressed as convicts. After the getting dressed up part, my talent pretty much went out the window. (Again, I ask you: Who does this at their job?)

Note to self: You can still be "picked last" as an adult.

At the beginning of the game, I was quite aware of the "strategic" positioning and substituting going on so that I was no where near the net - or any action for that matter. In fact, for probably the first ten minutes of the game, I wandered around like a random off the street who just happened to show up "in uniform." (It didn't help matters that I was the ONLY one who didn't get the memo about bright orange jump suits and showed up in a striped obesity get-up instead.) My hopes for re-defining myself in the athletic arena were not looking good. And, after the slow start, I was completely prepared for some kind-of royal mishap or glorious fall...

HOWEVER, believe it or not, I am happy to report today that I played well. I even got BOTH of my serves in the box and hit ONE pretty good "dig." Today, my picture was all over the media! Take that you mockers.

The moral of the story: If you are bad at most things, then people praise you when you do one or two things right. It is really the way to go! (The striped suit, by the way, is NOT such a good route for me.)

Check out pictures at SwoCo Blog if you are interested.

Have a good weekend and look for a Halloween update soon!

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

The Weight is OVER...

...Literally OVER. (Are you tired of my bad puns yet?)

If you guessed that my weight was 2 pounds OVER last week's weigh in, you are the big winner. Stink.

So it was a bad week, I'm owning it. Tomorrow is a new day.

Other hilariousities:

One, my friend Megan starved herself today for the WW weigh-in. In fact, she was so hungry that she actually brought a slice of pizza in her purse and ate it DURING the meeting. Ridiculous!! (P.S. She is at WW so she can lose weight before riding a MULE in January down the Grand Canyon --- this puts my motivation to shame.)

Two, the "coach" at Weight Watchers tonight actually said: "It is very important that you drink your 48 ounces of water because lack of liquids lead to dehydration, which can cause death. If you are deceased, you will never make your goal weight." Wow... so encouraging and practical. Haha.

The Weighting Game

No really... don't.

This is a little game I like to play with myself on Wednesdays. Why? Because Wednesday is Weight Watcher's Weigh In Day. This is the day that I get to find out what kind-of damage all the Kettlecorn, cupcakes, Halloween candy, and chips & salsa has done in the past week. This is also the day that I get to refuse my regular afternoon snack in hopes of saving an extra .2 lbs from the scale. This is a very scary day.

My meeting is at 6PM tonight. I am headed to the gym right after work to sweat off another.2 lbs. Every little bit helps!!

I'll report back tomorrow.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009


I have two exciting announcements this morning:

First, my friend Ashley and her husband Chip had their first baby boy last night around 9:30PM. Welcome to the world Kane Parker Schnabel!!

ALSO, this weekend my beautiful friend Jenni and her beau Jonathan got engaged!! I am so excited for them and the journey that lies ahead -- Wish I was there to celebrate!

(Thank goodness both of these girls are on the ball with facebook pics.)

OH, and I guess I should also mention that one of my students announced her FIFTH ENGAGEMENT yesterday. She is 16. I don't know what it is about this girl, but boys just love to throw rings at her. Some girls have all the luck!!

Sunday, October 25, 2009

A Few of My Favorite Things:

Fur (Addy fur primarily)

This weekend was packed with all of the above!!

The adventures began Friday night with the second annual "DaPalooza" celebrating my best friend Amanda's 26th birthday at a cabin/campsite in Bedford. You can't beat a campfire in late October - especially with some of our very best friends!

Then, today, the entire Mulvaney/Chapman clan loaded up for a day of fall festivities. We took a beautiful scenic drive to Blacksburg to admire the colorful leaves, then ate lunch at Jeff's favorite: Cabo Fish Taco, and spent the afternoon at Sinkland Farms picking out pumpkins, petting animals, and eating Kettle Korn. Jeff & I know how incredibly blessed we are to have both families so close by and such good friends with each other. Plus, as an added bonus, time spent with both of them is always a hoot!! Here's some documentation:

Here we are all crowded in the car like a bunch of nerds... Kathryn was so pissed that we had to take a picture before we even got off of our street. Thank goodness for minivans!

My mom kissing a mini-ature horse.

World's greatest pumpkin?

Addy watching the chickens in the petting zoo.

What a wonderful weekend filled with favorites!!
(**Do you like all the alliteration in this post? It's just a little English teacher naturally coming out in me.)

Thursday, October 22, 2009

New Look

How do you like the new look of my blog?

I like to think of it as a more "mature" and professional-looking blog.

It might really just be procrastination from my school work.

So, what do you think?

I Am THAT Girl

A few days ago I heard a speaker say, "you all have a friend who goes on a diet every three weeks and then complains that nothing works..."

I haven't been able to get that out of my head... I am that girl. I don't really know what to say. Call it lack of discipline. Call it the need for instant gratification. Call it what you will, but it is true. This is a harsh reality I am learning to accept.

Acknowledging that, I have been hesitant to share my latest endeavor: Weight Watchers.

At Poppy's penny and with Kathryn as my side kick, I began attending Weight Watchers meetings (for the third time, I might add) last Wednesday. Yesterday was my first weigh in and, despite the fact that I really didn't stick to the plan at all, I had a decently significant 3.5 pound loss. Today, at least, I am feeling more motivated.

Attending these meetings with my sister is ridiculous. She really doesn't need to lose weight, but I knew that her sense of humor and "put it all out there" attitude would keep me going. She has not failed me:

When we sit at the meetings, I am taken back to high school. I am the nerdy girl who wants to answer all the questions and earn as many "Bravo Points" as possible. Kathryn is the "too cool for school" girl, who rolls her eyes at me and kicks me when I try to speak up. Instead of actively participating, she mostly just comments rudely under her breath about everything. For example, during week one she suggested that we "Boo" the woman who so vulnerably admitted that she had cheated the plan over the weekend, and made such statements as "Wouldn't you like to see HER at the gym?" about the lady with big hair who has already lost 90 pounds. Oh to be as confident as my sister.

This week, Kathryn tossed out "laxatives" when the instructor asked what we should add to our diet to increase our overall health and add to weight loss. Really? There is never a dull moment.

I might be that girl; but, I am having fun (sometimes) in the process.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Why We Don't Have Kids

So you may remember that I've been having "baby fever" recently... It's true. I crave late nights, early mornings, cuddly onesies, and spit-up. I think about it all the time. THEN, occassionally, I am reminded why we don't have kids yet. Yesterday was one of those days...

I mentioned a few posts back that Jeff once LOST a friend's two yorkies while we were dogsitting... This is one of the legendary stories at our house because it so perfectly illustrates our irresponsibility and Jeff's laid back attitude: He actually searched for the dogs for all of one hour before declaring it a "lost cause" and then only lucked out when a nearby veternarian found the pups and posted signs in the neighborhood later that day.

Flashforward about a year and a half: After our wild party this weekend, the back gate was left open yesterday. Howard came over and brought Tso for his daily workout and Addy and Tso's play-date. Little did he know that while he was pumping iron in the basement, Addy and Tso were going on a little adventure of their own.

Luckily, Tso was wearing tags. (Jeff and I are too irresponsible to keep Addy's collar on her... We don't like the way it makes her chest fur look.) An hour or so later, Howard received a phone call from the SAME BLASTED VET. He had found the dogs. Who is this Miracle Man and why does he love us so much?

Needless to say, I'm pretty sure there are WANTED signs all around Roanoke warning people not to leave their prized possessions anywhere near the Chapmans. Plus, I don't think the Amber Alert system would be quite so forgiving with kids.

We are going to wait a little while longer...

Sunday, October 18, 2009

3rd Annual Chapman Oktoberfest

Well folks... Oktoberfest 2009 was a success! We are officially recuperated... although for a moment today, I wasn't sure we'd make it.

In case you don't know this tradition: Since we've been married, Jeff and I have hosted an October Beer Tasting Party. The object is for everyone to find the most original beer they can (this can be tricky in Roanoke) and bring a six-pack to share, then we provide huge coolers, dixie cups, food, and prizes. Everyone samples all night and places a vote for the Best and Worst Beer and the winners are announced at 11:30.

Here are this year's winners:
Lauren with "Mississippi Mud" as the Best Beer in her 'Crown' and
Kathryn with "Hop Devil" as the Worst Beer in a Snuggie w/ a 24oz. (She kind-of looks like the Statue of Liberty doesn't she?)

NOTE: Approximately one hour later Kathryn could be found sitting in her snuggie in the kitchen drinking that beer and eating cheese slaw out of a mixing bowl while holding a small dog...

This year was quite a hit. Jeff and I estimate that we had about 60 "samplers" and definitely over 40 different types of beer. So fun. Our farthest guests came from Maryland -Maureen and Dave - and took their role as out-of-town beer conoseiurs very seriously... Although I believe Dave had his priorities a little mixed up when he wrote "I don't care, I just want to be in the blog" on his ballot. :) This was only second worst to the person who simply voted for ME as the worst beer. Hmm?

Anyways, we had a blast & love getting to have fun people in our home! Needless to say, today was spent cleaning up and putting my house back together. :) Back to the grind tomorrow! Thanks to all who participated -- we'll see you at the 4th Annual!

Wednesday, October 14, 2009


On the outside, I think I look pretty put together most of the time (mother and sister need not respond). People comment frequently on the organization in my classroom, the neatness of our house, my "cute" clothes... But truthfully, I'm a mess.

Catch me on a Tuesday afternoon and you will find a stinky sink because the garbage disposal is broken and we haven't had time to mess with it since Friday, a bag (or two) of trash hanging from the kitchen door, a carpet of dog hair (beautiful, golden in shade), coffee mugs in every room of the house, an unmade bed, and me wearing a bathing suit bottom for underwear because I haven't done laundry in far too long.

I felt the need to confess.

For much of my life, this realization has been a point of great anxiety and stress for me. However, lately, I'm learning to embrace it a little more. I don't want to be a disaster all the time, but I do want my house to be a home: a place that is well lived in and real.

So today, in the spirit of the leaky toilet, broken disposal, acorn and leaf covered yard, and a host of other anxiety-causing home issues... I decided to make a list of things I LOVE about my house right now:

- Painted pine cones.
- My yellow books.
- My mantle.
- Fake fruit.
- Fresh gerber daisies(that Jeff got me last week and are miraculously still alive).
- The hideous patterned and dirty overstuffed chair-and-a-half in the den.
- Pumpkin Spiced Coffee in the fridge.
- A monogram above our bed.
- Painted furniture.
- The fact that most days someone is there visiting when I come home from work, and someone else is still there when we go to bed.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Exercise Demon

This is my mom's new nickname for herself. Yesterday, she called me twice and left repeated messages on my voicemail referring to herself as my "exercise demon." Wow, my very own.

Oh, the joys of motherhood one day...

Monday, October 12, 2009

Males and Monopoly

Hi guys! Sorry it's been a while since I've last posted. Jeff, Howard and I ventured to Virginia Beach this weekend for Jeff's college roommate Jake's wedding. Jake and Amanda have been together the same amount of time as Jeff and me - almost 8 years - so it was really special to finally see them tie the knot! The wedding was perfect and absolutely beautiful... I will post pictures later - still stalking facebook for some new posts.

Anyways, this was really the first wedding that I've gotten to see almost entirely from the groom's perspective. Jeff was the best man, so I spent a decent amount of my time leading up to the wedding thinking about things like tuxedos, toasts, and cornhole boards. Then, this weekend, I had the pleasure of spending my Saturday afternoon with the boys as they got ready for the big walk down the aisle. Jake is a really manly-man, so it was cute to see him thinking about the little things --- like borrowing concealer for a scar on his chin & delivering rose petals to their hotel room for that night. *Sometimes I think I don't give grooms enough credit! That said, it was also hilarious to see the entire party still sprawled out in front of the VT game at 2:30, when they had to be ready for pictures at 3:15. Can you imagine? And, boys really do talk about sex as much as we think they do... honestly, on your wedding day, they just let it all go. (Lord, please forgive them for the "get-away car" decor.)

All in all, it was an insightful experience and lots of fun. Best wishes to the brand new Mr. and Mrs. McCrowell.

On another note, McDonald's began their Million Dollar Monopoly game this past week. Jeff and Howard were determined to win, so we ate a total of 3.5 meals there in two days. Gross! (But you know I kind-of loved it.) It is a very serious, and very intense game of eating tons of food in order to be the one in 7 billion participants to win a million bucks. We definitely put our best foot forward. My motivation: the boys promised to turn around and take me back to Short Pump to shop if we won, and I decided I could always get lipo....

Perhaps a new 21 day challenge??? :)

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Biggest Loser

I will admit it - I am obsessed with "The Biggest Loser" on NBC. I really don't watch very much TV, and it has been a long time since I've had a show I just "can't miss," but this one has stolen my heart - and my brain cells for at least two hours every week.

If you don't watch, it is an amazing show about extremely overweight people who get chosen to live on a ranch for period of time where they are given nutritionists, trainers, etc. and each week one (or two) of the people that lose that least percentage of their body weight get eliminated.

This guy has already lost 64 pounds in four weeks. INCREDIBLE! Don't get me wrong, he's still a big dude... but talk about encouraging!!

So... Yesterday, channeling all of my "Biggest Loser" energy, I met with a personal trainer at the gym. (Courtesy of Poppy - woohoo!) I really WANTED a Jillian. Someone to scream at me and tell me how much I need to change my life. THEN, to get off the treadmill after burning 2,000 calories and walk away 15 pounds lighter. I KNOW this unrealistic... but I REALLY wanted it.

The sad truth: my trainer stood beside me while I did 30 minutes of mediocre cardio on the elliptical. This was extremely awkward. I was pouring sweat and couldn't really talk (don't judge), had no music/headphones/magazine, and had to deal with someone just standing RIGHT next to me making small talk about things like Dr. Phil. This is not Jillianesque. As a side note, I was right next to a male teacher from my school. This was funny on a lot of levels, but mainly because there was a certain amount of shame radiating from both of us because just hours before we'd gone through the cafeteria lunch line together. I saw him get two things of French Fries, and he eyeballed my pizza slice. If only said trainer knew what she was up against. :)

In conclusion, as a I watched my new favorite show last night and peacefully ate a peice of chocolate cake, I decided the only option was to bulk up and be "in training" for "The Biggest Loser." I only have a few more pounds to gain...

Monday, October 5, 2009

Fat Monday!

Well folks, today is the 22nd day! I'll admit, I "broke the fast" last night at dinner with a delicious Marshall Chapman filet mignon. Pretty wonderful! This morning, I WAS tempted to start my day with a full fat Hardee's biscuit, but I overslept... so it's decaf coffee and air instead. :) Probably for the best.

In reflection of the 21 Day Challenge:

1.) It probably did more for my blog readership than my body. Oh well, what was I expecting? To look like Nicole Richie in three short weeks? (I still haven't weighed because my brother-in-law stole our scale... Yes, that is a weird thing to have stolen. But, I'm fairly certain that weight loss was very minimal.)

2.) I wish I could say that I stuck to this detox PERFECTLY, however, this blog is about being honest. The first two weeks I was religious about the plan. The last week was slightly more "flexible." Either way - I made some MAJOR changes. The biggest thing I realized was how many BAD choices I would normally make in a week, or even a day. This made me very aware of my eating habits... and slightly grossed out.

3.) I have broken my addiction to caffeine and aspartame and actually DO feel like I have more energy and generally feel better right now. This is the one thing from Skinny Bitch I plan to continue strictly, hopefully for the rest of my life.

4.) I could go without meat - I think - I could not go without cheese. *I didn't expect this, but I could literally swim in a pool of cheese right now and LOVE it.

5.) It honestly does feel better to care for my body and be in control of what I'm eating. I don't want to be a freakish girl that has to take her own food everywhere she goes.... but I do want to be strong and healthy. I haven't figured out the details yet -- I mean, I DO deserve at least one fat day, right? - but I definitely plan to make some real changes in my eating habits permanently.

I'll keep you updated.

6.) Finally, I couldn't have done it without you guys! There were SO many times that I was tempted to cheat and then a loyal blog reader would pop up and ask me a question about the challenge. At times it was a little creepy realizing how many people were following this quest, but VERY encouraging. Thanks guys! I wish I had some awesome results to share with you... but really, I'm still just the same, only 21 days more frustrated. You'll be the first to know if I ever discover the secret to real dieting success.

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Nervous Breakdown

First things first: Victory over the Cookies last night!

Day 18: I ate a half a bagel (shoot me).

Moving on quickly...

Last night - in the midst of twelve people crammed into our kitchen, twenty dozen cookies being mixed and baked, Tso peeing on the floor, and a cricket landing in my drink - someone commented about how I always seem so relaxed.

If you know me, you know this is a hilarious concept. I'm really not someone you would typically call laid back. In fact, in high school I had a reputation for recopying entire notebooks when the edges got a little wet, and biting my nails down to the quick simply because they weren't all EXACTLY the same length and shape.

Recently, however, I have, in fact, become pretty relaxed. I've been thinking about this a lot today. Why?

The obvious answer is Jeff. There is no way to be around him and not let his attitude rub off. If it wasn't for Jeff, I'd probably be in a hospital by now. Sometimes it drives people crazy - like when we show up places obscenely late - but mostly it has been very freeing and wonderful.

The other thing I realized today is that my job actually forces me to calm down. If I didn't adapt a little, I'd literally have a nervous breakdown every day. Being a teacher is a WONDERFUL job - who doesn't want to eternally live in high school?!? - BUT, I do deal with a lot of morons. Today, for example, I had to repeat instructions about how to staple a paper together and turn it in in the front of the room at least 300 times (no lie) and a student told me he didn't "give a f***" what I said and stormed out of my room. Just a day in the life... :)

So is it worth it? I think so. We'll see how long until I really do lose my mind.

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