Book of the Month - Jane Eyre and The Help

If you read my New Year's Resolutions, you may have noticed I vowed to read one book per month.  Well, this month is not over yet, but it almost is and I already know I will not have complete a whole book.  However, I am about halfway through TWO books, so it pretty much evens out, right? 
On the kindle this month, we have Jane Eyre.  What took me so long to read this book?!  I guess it always seemed boring, but I've loved most other classics I've read, and I'm so glad I have finally delved into this one!  It's wonderful so far.
As for book number two, I have not completed converted to Kindle usage yet and have many physical books that I still want to read.  Mostly because I spent the money on those darn things and they are currently taking up space on my bookshelf!!  My bookshelf is full of mysterious stories and characters that I am finally ready to discover.  So in my hands this month is The Help.  I am refusing to see the movie until I finish the book.  I love love LOVE the book so far, it does not disappoint!
I have a couple books that I want to read this year, but nothing is set in stone and I am always looking for suggetions!  What is the best book you've read in the past year?


Brief Weekend Recap Jan 13-16

Every time I sit down to blog lately, I am reminded that I do not have a working camera and I do not have a flash on my iPhone 3GS.  So alas, these recaps are most likely pretty boring without pictures to break them up, so I'll keep it brief and throw in a couple relevant pictures from google.  I'm just going to have to do this until I get a new camera :)

Friday night:
-Met Jess at Azteca for chips and margaritas
-Sang some karaoke and stayed out later than anticipated with Jess, Ryan, Mat and Ashley
haha, see, totally looks like us! ;)
-AUDITIONS! I tried out for the King & I and Singin In the Rain in hopes of making the ensemble for one of them.  Surprisingly, my brother decided to try out too!
-Company Holiday Party at the Blackhawk Hotel.  Lots of drinking, some mediocre food, socializing with coworkers outside of work, and getting our dance on.
All smiles all night, hahaha
-Spent time with my Little and went to Beauty and the Beast in 3D
-Ryan and I enjoyed a night in and watched Moneyball
-Woke up sick :( It finally hit me, the cold bug.
-I laid on the couch all day and watched Ryan play Skyrim.  Good stuff.
Let's hope I get a camera soon...HINT HINT Ryan! :) Let's also hope I get better soon, because I am very much looking forward to Girl's Weekend in Des Moines this coming Friday-Sunday.  Just wish I had a camera to capture it all (wink wink).



I have finally jumped off the plateau!  Regarding my weight that is.  Pretty much since September I have been fluctuating around the same weight within a pound or two.  What is the deal with that?! Granted, it was the holidays and I'm sure I wasn't as diligent with my diet as I should have been.  But I just couldn't shake one more pound!  Finally this week I lost 3 pounds!  Let's see if I can keep it going this time.  Thank you to those of you who have been motivating me to keep pushing through, I listened and it worked.
Thank goodness!


A Look Back at 2011

2011 was a good year, a great year actually.  I think 2012 has a lot to live up to, though I don't see it being a problem.  2011 did have it's downfalls too, some tears were shed, fights were had, friends/family were lost...but on the flip side, there were lots of laughs, lots of love, new friends gained, and plenty of adventures!  Here is a quick look back at 2011, mostly with pictures :)
I started a new job in January and finally got out of customer service, this was blessing.
I met Frank, from American Pickers at our Company Holiday Party!
Ryan and I enjoyed a trip to Las Vegas, followed by a trip out to Omaha for my birthday!

In the meantime, we moved out of our apartment and started renting a house.
I looked at my pictures from my birthday weekend, sucked it up (and sucked it in) and stepped on the scale, realizing I weighed the most I ever had in my life, I joined Weight Watchers in March to get my health back on track. This later turned into using a free program to track my calories, exercise, and progress...it's nice not paying to do something you can manage yourself (once you're motivated).
In April, we lost Ryan's grandma right before Easter.  But many happy things happened to soften the loss!  We celebrated our one-year anniversary AND celebrated Jenny and Chris' marriage.

In May, I was a bridesmaid in Alli and Paul's wedding and got to spend a wonderful weekend with some wonderful high school friends.

I enjoyed several concerts throughout the year, including Carrie Underwood, Josh Groban, and Reba!
I took up running, for some crazy reason, and ran my first 5k in July with Ashley and then one week later ran a 4-mile.  All of this while also training for RAGBRAI, which Brooke, Laura, and I rode the last three days of.

The last part of the year mostly revolved around weddings!  Starting with some super fun bachelorette parties, followed by some rockin' weddings, and then surprisingly, three more engagements to start it all over again in 2012 :)

Laura, Brooke, and my sister all got engaged by the end of the year, planning weddings for August, September, and fall of 2013!
I started singing with the Quad City Singers and I. LOVE. IT. I'm so happy to be singing again, and I have made some great friends along the way.
Ryan and I (and family) spent several weekends enjoying the fall weather, hiking, going to Bluff Lake, staying in McGregor, etc.

I ran one more 5k in October, it was so much fun and I can't wait to do it again in 2012!

In December, we lost Ryan's grandfather.  There was a beautiful remembrance of him and I attended my first military funeral, chilling, yet amazing.
The holidays came and went, and I had a broken camera...so I have no pics from the, but I did steal a couple from my family.

At the end of the year, my weight-loss progress ended up to be a very slow process for me, but here are the results: 20 pounds lost and 13 inches (between neck, waist, and hips).  But I've gained more than I lost, and that's energy, self-control, motivation (most days), strength, and commitment.  I look forward to what 2012 has to offer me for my health!  Here is a look at me before and after the 20 pounds...not a huge difference, but if I can do another 20 this year, I think it'll be much more noticeable! :)
New Year's 2011
Vegas, January 2011
November 2012
November 2012
Here's to hoping 2012 is an awesome year!  I know I'm looking forward to it :)