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Treading Wine

January 28, 2011 19 comments

I know what you’re thinking – “Paige, don’t you mean treading water?”

Do I ever mean water over wine? Not unless we’re talking about laundry and I rarely talk about laundry.

For the last several weeks I have been struggling to tread wine.  You see, if I was struggling to tread water, I would have simply gotten out of the pool (or lake, or ocean).  But wine is complex, sometimes surprising, occasionally corked, but usually delightful, just like life.  So therefore, treading wine is worth the struggle.

So what I have been struggling with that has kept me off-balance (and writing very little) for the last few weeks?  I think I have it mostly figured out (how’s that for confidence and conviction?).  I have shared on occasion that I haven’t always been happy in my job.  The thing is, I love what I do and I am good great at it.  But I am a perfectionist and it had gotten out of hand.  I had gotten to a point where nothing felt good enough.  My confidence was slipping and my self-critical side needed a beat-down.  It had started to spill in to my personal life.  Everything felt hollow and I had stopped trusting my own instincts.  Very few people knew how it was affecting me, because, like my dramatic diva of a three-year old, I can put on a show.  The irony is during this time, I received a promotion, a raise and several accolades and still didn’t feel like my work was good enough.

But I am very fortunate, I am surrounded by smart, caring people (and a few paid professionals) who have helped me get things under control.  By examining my perfectionist tendencies, I realized that perhaps I am a wee bit… off-balance, unrealistic and um… crazy.  As I thought about the standard I was holding strangling myself to, I had to laugh.  It was absurd and not the level I hold others to.  My higher self-bar was not because I thought I was better than the average person and could deliver more, it was because of that pesky perfectionism.  This may confuse you since I talk about mold in my shower and all of my follies, but there are parts of life where I feel safe being “normal” and parts where I wasn’t giving myself that same luxury.  (Trust me, the mold is still in the shower and I think the whole house needs dusting).

So I have perfectly cured myself in about two weeks.  (When you’re done laughing, feel free to continue reading).

Welcome back, need some water or a kleenex?

In lieu of an instant cure, which I was dismayed to discover does not exist, I am being more thoughtful about my goals, my decisions and my feelings.  I am letting myself off the hook a bit.  I am taking risks again and know that sometimes I will… eek… fail, and gulp… that’s good for me.   I am also reminding myself that my job is only one facet of my rich, tannin filled life.  I am treating myself the way I would treat any of my precious friends and family members: with support and encouragement.

I know that I will have to keep an eye on that bothersome perfectionist side and I may have to occasionally smack her around, but just being aware makes me feel so much better!

So I am again successfully treading wine and enjoying it.  Not to mention that cabernet-colored skin is more attractive than some of my spray tan debacles in an effort to avoid my natural pasty white color!

Thanks to a Mad Women who inspired me to share the hard, not always funny, parts of life.

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Hula Hoop Workout

January 19, 2011 11 comments

I have shared with you that on New Years Eve I demonstrated my maturity by consuming some adult beverages and showing off my hula-hooping skills.  But Dr. Oz has validated me!  Last week he featured a segment on the hula hoop workout.  Do you know what this means?!

  • I am at the front of a fitness trend, I was hula hopping before Dr. Oz!
  • I can multi-task: I was celebrating New Years and exercising.
  • You can exercise and drink at the same time!  This falls in line with my 5K selection criteria!
  • If you hula-hoop while drinking, the calories won’t count.
  • I am not a dork, I am a fitness guru.
  • I have found a form of exercise I can do while dressed up, as suggested by the pictures below.

Thank you Dr. Oz for confirming what I have been trying to share with people.  Hula-hooping is good for you!

How do you have fun while exercising?

Is it sad that I could provide two different pictures of me actually hula-hooping as an adult???

How To Choose a Superbowl 5K

January 5, 2011 12 comments

My friend and I have decided to do a few races this year and think about training for a half-marathon.  I am trying to get rid of the 12 pounds of Christmas.  And we’re both trying to get back to a place where we can eat and drink without guilt. 

Our first race is going to be Superbowl Sunday.  We had two races to choose from.  Here is our decision-making process utilizing my scientific, health-focused, methodology:

Me: “Okay there’s one 10 minutes from you and one 10 minutes from me.  Which one should we do?”

Her: “Didn’t you say the one by me had tailgate food afterwards?”

Me: “Ooh, yes, good point.  Tailgate food afterwards is a must.  Okay, I checked they both have tailgate food afterwards and beer.  Maybe we should look at elevations.  I don’t do hills.”

Her: “Oh yeah, flatter is better.” 

Me: “Okay, they both look about the same for elevation.  But the one by you does football jersey style shirts and the one by me does Hanes Beefy Tees – ugh.”

Her: “Oh, the beefy tees, always attractive.  What’s the cost of each?”

Me: “Ding, ding, we have a winner.  The one by you is $60, the one by me is $25.”

After emailing some other friends with our decision, a wise girl pointed out there is a great dive bar by the cheaper race too.

In summary:

  • Post race food and beer
  • Flat course
  • Cheap fees
  • Dive bar

We are true athletes!

Categories: Cocktails, Food, Humor Tags: , , ,

BEST Christmas Gift Idea: Shotski

December 21, 2010 4 comments

I was out for yet another holiday event last night – don’t try this at home kids, I am a professional.  I went out for sushi and drinks with some girlfriends. There are many highlights, but I think I can sum it all up with my friend’s  gift idea: the Shotski.  It’s ecofriendly (if you find a ski in a dumpster), cheap and unique.

Do you hate when one person drinks their shot before everyone else?  Do you have a friend who nurses their shot?  Do you know someone who has everything?  The Shotski is for you.

What’s your go-to gift this season?

The 12 Pounds of Christmas

December 16, 2010 24 comments

I am Paige and I have a problem.  My vices have become so debilitating that I cannot make it two hours, TWO HOURS, without chocolate or some Christmas treat!  And every night presents a new reason to drink.  (Okay, I can find a reason every night to have a glass of wine, but I’m talking about really good reasons like Christmas parties, holiday traditions and my feet were cold.)

So here it is – my 12 pounds of Christmas:

  1. The kids made peppermint bark. What kind of mother would I be if I didn’t eat it and tell them how yummy it was.
  2. Every year we have our favorite toffee shipped from Colorado.  WE ONLY GET IT ONCE PER YEAR – of course I ate it – I had to before my husband did.
  3. I attended my work holiday luncheon and drank white wine – hey it paired nicely with the heavy cream bisque. 
  4. After the lunch we had a morale event that was bartending lessons (and tasting) – it was a morale event, I had to participate. 
  5. Following bartending, we had an after party at another bar.  I am on the leadership team, I had to drink to make others feel like it was ok.  But because I am a manager, I didn’t want people getting too drunk, so I ordered everyone a bunch of pizzas.  I had to eat them too- you can’t have management passing out drunk.
  6. We watched Polar Express as a family – the kids drank cocoa, I drank cocoa and Bailey’s.  It’s a requirement.
  7. The kids made sugar cookies – again with the good mother thing.
  8. We made gingerbread houses – I had to “clean up” the left over frosting.
  9. One of the neighbors brought over chocolate covered pretzels – nobody can say I am a bad neighbor, I ate the pretzels.
  10. The kids made those peanut butter cookies with the Hershey kisses.  AND they used dark chocolate – my favorite.  Being such a fantastic mom to my lil’ bakers is becoming a problem.
  11. We had dinner at a friend’s house, they poured cocktails, I didn’t want to be a rude, so I drank three.
  12. We stood out in the cold to watch Santa come through the neighborhood on a fire truck, it was cold, I needed to stay warm, I prefer liquid heat.

So as you can see, in the spirit of giving, because I am a giver, and in the spirit of the holidays, I have done my duty as a mother, friend, neighbor, boss and employee.  I have eaten and drank nightly and CHRISTMAS IS STILL OVER A WEEK AWAY!  Does this mean I’ll stop now before Christmas?  Uh, no!  I want to be on Santa’s good list, and judging from his belly he rewards those who selflessly indulge, like me, over those who turn their back on holiday traditions.  At the rate I am going, I am pretty sure Santa is bringing me diamonds and a new car.

Eat, drink and be merry!

 

Kids Christmas and Cocktail Pairings

December 10, 2010 17 comments

I had an epiphany tonight – I am a sommelier!  Just as a sommelier pairs the perfect wine with a great meal, I have the talent to match a cocktail to any kid Christmas event, well any event really, but let’s try to keep it seasonal people!

So here you go, the perfect holiday pairing list:

  • Getting a Christmas Tree
    • Straight Vodka (if you’re spouse is a perfectionist like mine)
  • Decorating the Christmas Tree
    • Hot Buttered Rum – you must get the seasonal stomach (aka gut) in training
  • Putting up Christmas Lights
    • Water – this was a test people! Roofs and liquor don’t mix
  • Watching The Polar Express with the kids
    • Bailey’s and Hot Cocoa – “Hot, hot, ooh we got it” (If this doesn’t make sense, you haven’t seen the movie, which means you’re getting coal in your stocking)
  • Kids School Christmas Pageant
    • Coffee and Peppermint Schnapps (people will think it’s coffee and gum)
  • Christmas Date Night with Your Spouse
  • Santa Run – Standing in the freezing a$% cold to watch firetrucks and Santa come through the neighborhood
    • Brandy – in the name of survival
  • Company Christmas Party
    • White wine if you’re smart, Goldschlager if you’re looking for a severance package to bank roll your kids’ gifts
  • Making a Gingerbread House
    • Egg Nog – When else do you make a house out of cookies and candy?  When else do you drink egg nog?
  • Christmas Caroling
    • Can’t help you here, you’d have to give me (or the people who would have to listen) the whole bar to get me to sing in public
  • Kids’ Cookie Decorating Party
    • Cranberry Margaritas – Kids, frosting and sprinkles, you may want just want a shot glass
  • Girl’s Christmas Happy Hour
    • Christmas Cosmos – Out of style? Maybe, but so are Christmas sweaters, and we’re rockin’ them!
  • Neighborhood Cocktail Party – Adult’s Only
    • This whole list.  Times two.
  • Christmas Brunch with Relatives
    • Mimosa – It ony takes a splash of orange juice to look civilized
  • Christmas Brunch with Friends
    • Bellini’s – Fun, sophisticated and unique – just like my friends, well most of them…
  • White Elephant Exchange
    • White Russians – I don’t know why, I just think it sounds like a good idea.  So it is.
  • Christmas Dinner
    • Wine – Prime Rib and Cabernet, yes please!
  • Christmas Dinner with In-Laws
    • Tequila – And that’s just Plan A…
  • After Christmas Sales
    • Bloody Marys – Kills the Christmas dinner hangover and gives you energy to shop

I hope this list gets you through the holidays.  At anytime you may substitute any drink for hot cocoa and Bailey’s. 

Okay, what event did I forget?  What’s your favorite Christmas Cocktail recipe?

Lessons Learned from a Pajama Party

December 6, 2010 7 comments

 Last week I attended a pajama exchange party.  Basically a bunch of women got together for wine, appetizers and a game of pajama exchange stealing. The evening was fun on so many levels.  Our hostess has a beautiful home with perfect decorations, she had delicious appetizers and never-ending wine.  (When will I learn that I always have one glass too many?)  I only knew half of the fabulous women before arriving, but loved the other half I met enough to friend them on Facebook.  I think this is rare.  Usually, you meet new people, enjoy chatting with them and don’t give it another thought.  I don’t know if it was the combination of wine and pajamas, but I am a fan of all of these gals.

AND, I went home with fabulous pajamas – deliciously soft light blue reindeer pants with a tank top that had a reindeer with a TIARA!  These pajamas were clearly designed for me.  Our hostess also gave us each a pair fo sexy underwear, which is great, because since becoming a mom, my underwear isn’t always sexy!

In addition to enjoying myself and drinking a tad more than I had planned, I also learned many valuable lessons.  Unfortunately, some of them are too delicate to share on my blog, but think of women, wine and sleepwear and imagine the conversations!  So here’s a few things I can pass on:

  • Comfort is more coveted than sex appeal.  All of the pajamas were beautiful, but some of the most fought over were the kind of thing you hate to take off even to wash!
  • When you hope to prevent your gift from being stolen, stuff it in your bra!
  • Not wearing underwear with a thick seamed pair of work-out pants might lead to pleasure… (note this is tamer than the lessons I can’t write about…)  I should also say that one piece of advice in particular was so appreciated by my husband that he encouraged me to spend much more time with this group of women!
  • Men mistake hot flashes for an invitation.  Just because the pajamas come off doesn’t mean…
  • Book clubs are not just for readers, some just come for the wine!
  • As I have said before, women will come up with any excuse to get together and drink.  (Hell, I have even met virtually with a group of writers while we tweeted and drank wine).

At this party we talked about putting together a book club that would meet at a nightclub (yes, really) and it got me to thinking, what other “reasons” could we come up with to get together, drink some wine and laugh like school girls? 

This is where you come in!  What ideas do you have for a female get togethers?  I am looking for something that sounds like it’s legitimate (so that husbands don’t think twice about watching the kids) like a book club, but can be done over cocktails.  I am also a fan of anything that fuels humor and over-sharing!

Laughing is good for the soul and alcohol is good for everything else!