Category Archives: The Ordeal

Blog Updates

Well.  Happy Halloween and Happy Saturday to you all.

I find myself in the delightful position of having one Halloween party and one family dinner to attend this weekend, which means that I get to spend a great deal of time sitting on the couch relaxing, and attending to Things That Have Needed To Get Done on the old blog for awhile.

First off, I am informed that WordPress now allows you to do some font modifications without having to purchase the Typekit add-on.  Praise.  I didn’t mind the serif-ed font that my theme (Coraline) is automatically set-up to use, but I am quite interested in trying a few other fonts on for size.

I also spent a bit of time updating links, and whatnot as I realized some of these were broken and there is nothing more pointless than having a website full of broken links.  Not exactly the most rewarding work, but it had to get done.

I typed up the recipe for Garden Pie.  Because it’s not fair that I eat it so much and I do not share it with you!

Finally, I have been itching to change my header for a while from a photo to simple text.  After doing a bit of Google-ing this morning, it became apparent that actioning a free header has become MUCH easier than the old tutorial I used that involved many steps in Picasa.  For my purposes, this tutorial from Sweet Jelly Bean made the whole process about 20 minutes from start to finish. If you’re a low-maintenance blogger like me who is not going to throw $$$ or a great deal of effort at site design and whatnot, then I think you will probably appreciate this tool!  I am not sure if what I have currently will be the final product or not, but for now I think that it is a good stepping stone.

Bloggers: Are there any online design tutorials that you love?  Please share!

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Gathering the odd thought

1. The dress was fabulous.  It should, however, be noted that since it has some type of tulip layering on the front, leg crossing can lead to crotch-flashing.

Live dangerously.

2. My new planner officially begins this week.  Praise God.  After a few days of reflecting on its size (Bri thought I brought a Bible into work…not kidding), I’ve come to see it as a testament to my Instinct To Plan.

3.  As a forewarning, this week is a hot mess, scheduling-wise.  Marcus and I are booked every day and night until the 8th with the exception of tomorrow night.  We didn’t even buy proper food to cook for dinner.

Yes, seriously.

I’m as perplexed as you are.

Though, I am of a mind to action a pasta dish tomorrow night using some vegetables that we sourced from the farm.  I don’t remember the last time that noodles graced our table.  Can you?

4. I need to renew my Vogue subscription or else we are going to be living in a world of hurt when The September Issue goes out.

It might be hearsay, but I think they’ve been losing a bit of their edge lately.

Regardless of what layouts and spreads they are or are not doing, it’s like eating your vegetables.  It simply must be done.

While you’re at it, take note that blue is joining orange and Pendleton-style prints as The Thing To Wear this season.

5. While we were out last night, instead of taking pictures of meaningful things, like friends, I focused my efforts on beer boards and taps.

I’m confused by it too.

But since I committed, we may as well do a viewing.  It’s called, Tap Study.

Don’t lie, you’re loving the Lomo here as much as I am.

6. I just renewed my domain for another five years.  When I was talking about it with Marcus tonight, it was absolutely mind-boggling to think that two years ago I was desperately trying to migrate my blog from Blogger to WordPress, buy a domain and map it all out.

Do we still have a long way to go?  Absolutely.  I would be lying if I said that I knew what was next.  Because there are a lot of things that could be next.

But that’s not the moral of this story.  The moral is that time flies.  Modern day Aesop, right here.

What was the most spontaneous thing you did this weekend?

Bloggers, do you self-host or not?  Why?  How did you decide if you were meant to spring for a custom layout or tweak an existing-one?

Enjoying the Temporary

This month we’re keeping In the pursuit of cupcakes. for the tagline, because at this point I can’t imagine that anything else will do a better job of telling it like it is.

On some level, it’s probably deeply shameful that I haven’t kept track of the various incarnations of Real Life: Chapter X, or the taglines that I’ve used for the past 19 months, because everything else that I type here gets stored.  FOREVER.   At the same time, it’s nice that there’s at least one part of this blog that’s temporary.

Obviously because we have Thoughts and Opinions About Things, if y’all have any especially perfect ideas for what the next tagline or chapter should be, please share it in the comments section – there will be prizes for the ones that I use!

A Header for Ants

Friends, I apologize if you’ve stopped by here tonight and the layout is having a fit-and-a-half on you.  See, I’ve been dying to create a new header (since we all know how captivating mine have been for the past…ever), and Mads gave me the resources to do that.

Fantastic.

Except for the fact that the tutorial is for Blogger (which will let you have a header that’s as big as God) and WordPress is how I roll.  So I’ve been playing with different layouts all night to see if it’s physically possible for me to create a header that doesn’t look like it was meant for ants.

Right now it’s looking like ants-it-is, because the other layouts really don’t totally resolve the problem, and other than the header sizing-issue, I really like the layout I have now.  Even though it’s a bit squint-y, I have to say I am quite a bit pleased with the result and that it’s 100% better than the header I had before.

This morning was the Plymouth Firefighter 5k.  Despite the fact that it was pouring rain up until the race started and the other small detail of it being all of 50 degrees outside, it went surprisingly well.

Uncle Barry and I.

I finished in 29:07, which was a huge improvement over my April time of 33:45.  It was also an improvement over my race pace for the half-marathon which makes me think that I’ll be able to beat my 10 mile goal of 1:43.

And a pleasant surprise to top it all off, was the fact that I won a pair of running shoes from Gear West.  Running is a relatively inexpensive endeavor for me, but given the fact that I don’t spend more than $30 on shoes ever, buying running shoes is always a slightly painful experience.

That being said, if you’re just starting to run, for the love of God, DON’T SCRIMP ON SHOES.  The first pair of shoes I bought last January were a pink pair of Asics.  They fit me fine, and they served me well.  But, the only reason I picked them is because they were pink and on-sale.  Those should NOT be the qualifiers for a shoe purchase when you’re going to be spending ~400 miles in them.  When it was time for a new pair, I listened to Galina (homegirl knows what’s what) and went to get fitted at the Running Room in Uptown.  The shoes I came home with didn’t need to be broken-in, and the change I’ve experienced in my running posture as well as my performance is incredible.  Did I mention that they’ve never, ever given me a blister? Because that would be true as well.

I’m off to bed (despite the fact that I spent the night-in, this evening ended up being far busier than I had anticipated), but while I’m asleep, don’t forget to enter the giveaway for a Coach Mini Skinny!

Embrace-Love-Awkward-Fantastic

Friends, I was lucky enough to be in the right place at the right time (read: I’m pretty sure that Sal blogged about it at some point) and I snagged a ticket to the Minnesota Blogger Conference, which happened today (if you managed to remain oblivious to all of the crazy taking place on my Twitter feed).

What I embraced: That I am 23 years old and have absolutely no idea of what I want to do with my life.  And more recently (since we all know I’m a life-planner to the extreme), I’ve come to accept that this is a totally appropriate place for me to be at in my life.  Here?  What you see is exactly what you get, because Tenaciously Yours, is about me living my life.  I blog because I get a kick out of it, and because I truly believe that spending time writing every day makes me a nicer person.  The fact that I happen to get to share my life with all of you is simply the best of all possible perks.  It is a VERY cool thing.

What I love about blogging: The Universal Truth.  For the record, Universal Truths (or “Big T” truths as I’ve heard them described) are the only thing I took away from high school philosophy class.  There’s nothing more touching than when you stumble upon a new blog, or are reading one of your favorites and you find something that someone has shared and it helps you to realize that You Are Not Alone.  Conversely, when I’m blogging + discussing different parts of my life and you all comment back sharing your experiences with the same thing, it reminds me that I Am Not Alone.

What was awkward: I’ll be honest – I was incredibly unprepared for the extremely diverse mix of fellow attendees.  There were professional bloggers corporate/business bloggers, hobby bloggers, and individuals who wanted to start blogs, but hadn’t yet taken the leap.  It was a fascinating mix, but it also made some of the sessions feel kind-of unfocused.  Not because the speakers were unprepared, but because I have no idea of how you would be able to give an appropriate one-size-fits-all presentation in 45 minutes to individuals with SUCH a wide range of backgrounds and skills.

What was fantastic: I really had no idea of how LARGE the blogging community is in Minnesota.  Reading “local” blogs outside of my immediate circle of friends isn’t something I’ve made an effort to do (ever) and honestly, I’m kind of excited to see the cities through the eyes of strangers.

In the meantime, I leave you all in pursuit of eight hours of sleep.  Because if there’s one thing that my body is telling me, it’s that homegirl needs to rest.  I’m tres excited to see where Tenaciously Yours, will take me in the coming months and could write about that for hours, but in the here and now, if I end up with stress-induced-the-seasons-are-changing-I-haven’t-been-resting-sickness, then y’all will have to bear witness to the trainwreck of the year. 

No bueno.

High Holidays Fashion Show: Part I

I know, blog make-over again.  But WordPress rolled out another theme that involved drop-down menus, a cleaner layout, and a category cloud that I loved so.much.more than Bueno.  Thanks again to Ree Drummond for her free high-res photo downloads.  I don’t think the one that I’m using as my header is still available, but it is nonetheless very appreciated, especially since I’m not a photography-type myself.

But that’s not really what I was going for today.

If you’re not having a full-on anxiety attack from the title of this post, then you really don’t have a healthy Fear of selecting outfits to wear on the High Holidays. 

For my non-Jewish readers, the High Holidays are Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur.

Things we accept as Fact: I do not feel at all reverent when I cover my shoulders, nor am I inspired to reverence by others covering theirs.  Separate Fact: The women in Marcus’ family don’t believe in wearing pants to shul.  This is the only thing that Michelle managed to Impress on me three years ago, and believe you me, it sticks.

And three years ago, I made Lindsey come over so that I could try on all-manner of full-skirted atrocities, because I didn’t know any better.  She saved me, I’m telling you.

But lucky for me, I can finally dress myself.  Though I think y’all know it was not without a lot of effort.

SO for the next month, I’ll be giving Linds a much-needed break and using all of you.

The only rule for this project is that everything I pick has to be wearable at work, and failing that, has to be good for date night.

This week, we’re looking at black.  It’s the safest way to start.

For the record, that sweater dress on the left is actually black.  I’m not entirely sure what ShopStyle was up-to there.

I decided to pair these things with a Tiffany Blue/Sea Green/Turquoise, because even though it’s “in” for this fall, it’s a classic look.  If you were to accessorize black with that color palette, it would look chic without being deeply trendy.

Bueno

Good?  Yes.

But Bueno is actually the name of this theme and friends, I think that it’s a keeper.  It ain’t perfect, but it’s a hell of a lot better than the hits and misses I’ve been having in my hunt for The Theme.  Some girls look for The Dress.  But no, I’ve been looking for something pretty to show you all here.

Plus, we have the added joy of the drop-down menus I loved that ended up getting scuttled with theme disaster uno.