Archive for January, 2011

There’s hope

Today’s post is a bit heavier than the others have been.

I started writing something about my bad hair day, which I can largely attribute to my embarrassingly prominent roots. I was just about to make an appointment to get them fixed when I came across an article about a new movement discouraging women from covering their heads in (potentially) dangerous chemicals. It’s a gray-roots movement of sorts.

I still want to share my thoughts on that and get your input, but I’ve had something else on my mind that I can’t seem to shake. (And I don’t think it’s wise to ignore.)

As I was driving into work this morning, I heard about the terror attack in Moscow that killed 35 people. Working in the media industry, I’m surrounded by devastating information of this kind on nearly a daily basis.

I used to live in a bit of a news bubble, checking my favorite cooking blogs and beelining it straight to the Life & Culture section of the Wall Street Journal.
Given my tendency to experience others’ pain as deeply as my own, learning about how to incorporate chia seeds into cookies and tracking the emergence of sushi in Paris were exactly the kinds of things I preferred to deem newsworthy.

I still love to pore over this type of sugary pseudo news, but my job no longer allows me to bury my head in the mineral makeup.

I am forced to face the reports of missing children, tragic car accidents, and, like today, terrorist attacks. Every time I hear of an event like this, I find myself feeling guilty for continuing to drive to work, making a phone call or picking up dry cleaning. Going about my daily routine seems selfish when so many people are suffering.

Just as I got to work and was feeling this familiar guilt, I was reminded of video that was also brought to my attention because of my job.

It’s these kinds of uplifting, inspiring stories that keep me going. This video captures perfectly the source of my hope in a world that’s filled with tragedy. My heart and prayers go out to all those affected by today’s events in Russia, along with my firm belief that they, too, can find peace.

Something old and something new

…. and something blue, now that I think about it. But don’t jump to any conclusions. I’m still quite single.

I don’t intend to chronicle everything I eat, but I have been on a health-food kick recently, and I’ve been pretty brave about branching out and trying new foods. So, here is my something new in a something blue bowl:

I have long known the health benefits of eating oatmeal, but I have never been able to bring myself to gag down the sticky stuff. So, after seeing one of my favorite bloggers Heather Eats Almond Butter tout the tastiness of oat bran (a variation on the oaty theme that’s actually slightly superior nutritionally to oatmeal) I decided to give it a shot. I chose to do it on a Sunday morning, so I could find something else to eat if disaster ensued.
I cooked the bran according to Heather’s seemingly simple directions. (I was wary, though, as a girl who consistently burns microwave popcorn and ruins box cake mixes should be.)
The oats actually turned out pretty well, and with a few raspberries and some Truvia, I was sold. I give oat bran the Emily stamp of approval.
Now, for my something old. Every Sunday morning when I was growing up, my mom would play “Music for a Sunday Afternoon.”
Hearing the music from this CD still gives me warm, fuzzy feelings, so I pulled it out today and have it playing in the background as I type. If you’re looking for beautiful, inspirational music, I highly recommend it.

Pink Pumas

Every Saturday I peel myself out of bed in what I consider to be the wee hours, especially for a weekend morning. Seeing anything more than the inside of my eyelids at 7:50 a.m. just seems silly.

After routinely running into the lamp beside my bed and treating the task of finding a matching pair of matching socks like scaling Mt. Fuji, I’m usually ready to call it a day and head back to bed.
My love for Saturday morning Zumba class begins to waver, and suddenly all those studies about sleep — you know, the ones that say snoozing is just as important as exercising when it comes to calorie burning — seem especially compelling.
But the moment I lace up these bad girls, all thoughts of my pillow go poof!

I love shoes. I have many, many pairs in many, many shades and generally one size: 6. (Fun fact: I have unusually small feet given my height.)
Despite my sea of shoes, though, these Pink Pumas hold a special place in my heart — and my closet. They’re literally front and center for easy access.
I have yet to find a workout that these shoes can’t handle in sassy style.
I highly recommend them to all you Zumba lovers out there. The tread is perfect for twisting and turning while still giving you a good grip on the dance floor.
Today these shoes carried me through a class with a substitute Zumba teacher who infused our dances with a whole lot of Tongan flare. Imagine a rugby team shaking their hips while performing the haka. Exciting, huh?
(Note: Expect a plethora of posts about my beloved Zumba in the very near future!)

Just me, Emily

Hello, blogosphere! I have been observing your digital diary world from the sidelines for quite some time. And I’ve decided it’s time to get off the bench. So, I’d like to introduce my first official attempt at blogging: “Just me, Emily.”

I won’t even try to cram an explanation of who I am or what I’m hoping to achieve into this first post, but will you humor me while I quickly tell you about where my blog name comes from?
Did you ever read the book “It’s Just Me, Emily” when you were little? (My guess is 98 percent of you did not. Unless, of course, your name is Emily. Then the odds may be a bit better.)
For me, it was a childhood favorite. I don’t actually recall the complete plot, but the title has been on my mind recently for a number of reasons:
1. Unlike many of you, I will not be blogging about a husband’s odd habits, the best way to make stew for six or the crazy comments that come out of kids mouths.
While I honestly can’t wait to find my knight in dark-wash BKE jeans and fill my Mary Poppins-esque purses with Cheerios and diapers instead of lip gloss and nail polish, I am, for now, living life as just me, Emily. (I should warn you that when I do find that special someone, I fully intend to refer to him as “husby,” “the husband” and “Mr.” in my posts, just like all you cute married bloggers do.)
So while I may not have any family antics and adventures to write about, I hope you’ll enjoy following my journey as a single 20-something, if only to reminisce about what you may consider the “good old days” of being single and free, which I hope to refer to sometime soon as simply “the old days.”
2. Reason number two for my blog title, and the more important one, is that I’m on a mission this year: I want to be content with being me. Just me, Emily.
Confession(s): My personality tends to fall a bit into the Type A category. I may or may not be a slight perfectionist.
I’ve been very blessed, but I realize now that I’ve wasted too much time wishing I were someone else. I think we all do it. It’s hard to believe life wouldn’t be better with Jennifer Aniston’s physique, Gwyneth Paltrow’s closet or Jenna Dewan’s husband (who would be Channing Tatum, for those deprived souls who have not seen “She’s the Man” and other romantic comedy classic). But I’m going to try to break the habit of expressing angst instead of gratitude.
So, dear readers, I’d like to thank (all one or two) of you who read this far. I’m excited to embark on this journey of embracing life as just me, Emily.