Tuesday, December 13, 2011


Remember Senioritis? That time in high school where your transcripts were in and graduation was on the horizon? Well I think Senioritis is goes around this time of year. We had a record number of guesses for my office's "Where in the World is JLME?" contest that appears in our monthly e-newsletter. This just leads me to believe that people are slowing down and getting into vacation mode.

It's hard not to get swept away by the holidays when decorations are all around! Not to mention when Santa is showing up on your morning commute. I had a cookie exchange over the weekend, an office party tomorrow, and then another cookie exchange Thursday. So easy to be tempted this time of year!

Last night at Body Pump, the instructor asked us why wait until January to start your resolutions? Why not start now? She was specifically talking about pushing through a set of reps, but she makes a good point! I definitely thought about my 2012 fitness goals and pushed myself a little harder. I know I want to improve on my weight training and look great for the wedding, but what other goals do I have in mind?

Such a small idea, but the instructor definitely got me thinking! Rather than surrender to the holiday season, I think I'm going to tackle goals head-on. I can't think of a better way to start the New Year then to already be on track!

Friday, December 9, 2011

Santa, Can You Give Me a Window?

Thursday was a weird day. It started off pretty normal. I went to my group training session at 6am. The trainer announced she's canceling this session for the winter. Apparently not enough people want to head to the gym in the snow to have their butts kicked at 6am. Weird.

Can someone explain why NONE of the cameras are on Santa?
I was late leaving my apartment (I can actually blame this on Rob as he was running late, so I had to wait until he was done in the bathroom to shower and such. I guess I could come into work sweaty. Next time!) Leaving late let me have a little Santa sighting! Santa totally saw me taking his photo. Hope that doesn't mean I get coal in my stocking! I'm leaving out extra cookies this year.

Even though I left the house like 20 minutes later than usual, I somehow arrived at the office only 10 minutes later to work. This leads me to believe that the MBTA totally runs in some parallel universe where normal schedules and time tables don't exist. In this world, things that have no expiration date expire. True story.

Should have asked Santa for a new window
I open the door to the office, and it's freezing! Not a huge shock, but definitely colder than normal. I can hear the wind howling and it's breezing...inside. I go over to my desk and see the liner of my trash can flying about and notice a couple of my photos have fallen. Oh, and a giant crack in my window!

Eventually, maintenence came, and taped up the window with tape. They also forbid me from sitting in there, and highly discouraged us from going in. It was really windy yesterday so I was actually worried that some of the glass was going to fall! I managed to snap a photo of the outside of the window from the ladies room. The window wasn't magically repaired overnight, so I'm working at a co-worker's desk. So disorienting being in someone else's space! I'm hoping to come in Monday with things back to normal.

With no big plans for the weekend, I foresee running, Christmas shopping and lots of veggie out in the future!

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Let me tell you the story of a man named Charlie

A quick PSA to all my friends in Boston...

The CharlieCard was released by the MBTA on December 4, 2006. This little update made getting on the T as simple as tap and go. Like many commuters, I just stuck the card in my wallet where the machine could read it, and it's rarely moved since.

Now as we celebrate the 5 year anniversary of the CharlieCard, commuters should be aware that their cards could be expiring soon. I was surprised on my morning commute to tap and read "EXPIRED" on the gate screen. I had just purchased a December pass, so I went over to a fare vending machine to verify. It told me that my SmartCard had expired. I hadn't gotten a warning, and more importantly, I had my T pass on there! My train was arriving so I coughed up $2 for a ticket and went on to work.

A visit to the MBTA website confirmed that the CharlieCards do expire! Who knew?

While I'd threatened to boycott the T all month, December in New England doesn't really lend itself to walking. (Neither does my laziness) So I made the trek down to the T pass office at Downtown Crossing, where I was told they'd transfer the fare (Harvard has one as well).

It's not often I get on the T at Downtown Crossing, so it took 3 tries before I finally found the entrance where the office was located. I lucked out with no wait and approached the window. Before I even finished my request, the gentleman asked for my card, and a few minutes later handed me back a shiny new T pass. I was tempted to ask him to throw on the $4 I'd spent that day in T fare when I had a perfectly valid pass, but I am braver in my head then in real life. Plus, I had shiny new CharlieCard distracting me.

Lesson of the day? Check out the expiration date of your CharlieCard, and you could save yourself an annoying errand (and $4).

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Pro, Con, Con, Pro

In college, I was in a sorority. Twice a year sororities had recruitment (aka rush) to get knew members. During this time we would have discussions about the girls we met and would take a "pro, con, con pro" format so that you always started and ended with something positive. I think this is a good approach, so I'm adapting it to today's post.

Pro: I started my day with a workout! It's always a challenge for me to get up early enough for a morning workout, but today there was success! I tried out a new gym class, and I can now relax when I get home! Yay!

Con: The class I really wanted to attend was last night's Body Pump. My gym opens up class reservations 24 hours in advance, and by the time I logged on at 8pm on Sunday night (1.5 hours after registration opened) the class was filled! I refreshed and tried my luck all day yesterday, and was finally able to pick up a spot about an hour and a half before the class. Unfortunately, the front desk must have printed up the list prior to my sign-up because I wasn't on their list. So I was placed 4th on the wait list and didn't make it in. I did a bit of speed work on the treadmill, and decided to squeeze in weight training by attending the class this morning. That class was ok, but no body pump. As you all know, body pump is my new love.

Con: Apparently the smartcards (or Charlie Cards) used by the MBTA expire. The physical cards themselves. I learned this the hard way as I was denied this morning while on my way to work. Funny how I just put a month long pass on the card a week ago. MBTA, putting a month pass on a card that expires in a week doesn't raise any red flags??? How about printing an expiration date on the card? Seriously, I was totally blind sided by this and had to pay to use the T this morning. I don't have the money to buy another pass for December, so here's hoping a trip to the Downtown pass office helps! (Con 2 part B: the "free evening" I earned with the AM workout will be spent at the T office. Swell.)

Pro: I was this week's winner for the Delta Style Pile on the Miles Challenge! Whoooo!

Ending on a Pro is always better! Thinking about the good stuff is a sure fire way to lift my mood! Happy Tuesday everyone!

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Dress for Success

Happy Friday! Hope everyone has some great weekend plans in store.

I'm totally inspired by a meeting I went to last night, so I'm going to take a moment to tell you all about a fabulous organization!

For three years, through the Junior League, I worked with Dress for Success Boston (DFSB).

The mission of DFSB as stated on their website is:

"At Dress for Success Boston, our mission is to promote the economic independence of disadvantaged women. We do this by providing professional attire, a network of support and the career development tools to help women thrive in work and in life."
Pretty amazing, right? As a volunteer, I worked with clients who had interviews scheduled but nothing to wear, and unlike me when I wear the same outfit twice because I'm lazy, these women really don't have the right clothes to wear. Can't get a job if you don't have professional attire, and can't afford professional attire if you don't have a job. DFSB helps solve this by giving the women a suit (jacket and skirt or pants), a blouse, shoes, a purse, and accessories. The volunteers work with the women to help them find an outfit that's right for the interview, and they coach the clients a bit on how to dress in the work place. It's like shopping, but for a great cause.

The transformations the women make is incredible. Many of the women will have never worn a suit, and they come in pretty skeptical about it.There's an element of coaxing them out of their shell and helping them discover a side of them they've never seen before. It's an incredible moment when you see the woman look at herself in the mirror and discover confidence she didn't have before.

The support doesn't stop there! DFSB has a career center that helps with interviews, resume writing and computer skills. Plus, once a client gets a job, she can come back for a few more items of clothing to help her build a work wardrobe before her first paycheck. There's also a monthly Professional Women's Group that where experts come in to talk to the women about things like personal branding, tips for filing taxes, workplace etiquette, and so much more!

I'm very excited that the Boston affiliate is starting a Young Executives for Success (YES) program! I'm going to be a part of the committee and will talk about it more as it gets going. Basically it's going to be a series of events open to YES members that give everyone a chance to network. Members are required to volunteer at at least one DFSB event and make a $50 donation. So you benefit DFSB while getting to do fun activities around the city. Sounds pretty good to me!

If anyone is interested in learning more, just let me know and I can fill you in!

A Series of Confessions

Welcome to December! I spoke too soon about nice weather, as it is COLD today!

I have a few confessions to make:

1. I am wearing the same dress today that I did Monday.I work in a small office, and it was just me and my boss Monday. Today, he is out and my other co-workers have yet to see the dress (this week). In my defense, the dress is warm, as I mentioned it's cold, and I accessorized with differently today. I'm wearing a black belt and chunky black earrings today, while Monday there was no belt and I work a long necklace and pearl earrings. Night and day, right?

2. I was 20 minutes late to work. It took me way to long to decide if I should wear the belt or not. Like 20 minutes too long. The whole point of wearing the same dress was that it would be a time saver, as my morning workout ran late. FAIL.

3. I am not wearing make-up today. See item 2.

4. My bum hurts. I went to spinning last night. I totally forgot how uncomfortable the seat is. My bum is paying for it today.

5. I still love Ace of Base.  "The Sign" just came on my Pandora, so I'm having a mini dance party at my desk.

6. I am mad at the race photography from not getting better photos of me and my brother. Or rather no one together.

Go Bueges!

I should be blaming Purple Shirt girl. See we were close!
In fact, they went out of the way to make us look like we were miles apart. Seriously I was right next to him. Next time I'm holding his hand. Or better yet, he's giving me a piggy back across the finish. He's going into the Marines next month, where he'll probably have to carry more weight than little ol' me. So this really isn't as cruel as it sounds. Right?

6b. I steal race photos. Whoops....

That's it for today's confessions. (Unless you count that I wish it was Friday, because I do.)