[Resolutions] – Good Deeds Done

I hope you all had a very Merry Christmas!! We certainly did. Lots of time spent with family, playing games, giving gifts, visiting, chatting, and of course eating. It was a great couple of days.

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I started my week of good deeds off by holding the door for a woman at Target. One of the workers had gotten a train of shopping carts stuck between the automatic doors and a bunch of us were waiting behind him to get out into the parking lot. The woman with her carriage full of boxes and a bean bag chair was in front of me, but I slipped by her and pushed open one of the other doors and held it for her. She thanked me, but then continued to complain all the way to her car about “how stupid the kid was getting carts stuck in a door” and how they “didn’t have any large bags for her items at Christmas time!” among other things. I got in my car, wished her a flat tire, and went on my way hoping all my good deeds wouldn’t be rewarded this way.

A few days later, I ended up back at Target (shocking.) and grabbed a basket full of things from the local animal shelter’s wishlist.

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I had planned on bringing it to the shelter myself, but a friend of mine who I met up with after my Target trip was actually heading to the shelter with some donations of her own that night, so I gave her my bags and she played Santa to some very happy animals.

My week ended with Christmas Eve, and as we were driving to my family’s house we (obviously) stopped at Bagel World. I decided to pay for the man behind me in the drive-thru as my last good deed. Dan tried to watch his face as we drove away, but I was intent on getting out of there before he could catch up to me so he wouldn’t think I was waiting to be thanked. OR creepy. I like to imagine he appreciated it and that his free coffee tasted better than usual that day.

Apparently I didn’t earn enough good karma this week because guess who got a cold for Christmas?! This girl. Cough, sniffle. I would still like to do a few more good deeds for this one however, but I ran out of time with the Christmas Craziness. I plan on donating some winter jackets soon and I think it would be fun to bring some flowers or cookies to the hospital. As soon as I’m done sniffling.

[Resolutions] – The Grand Finale!

This is it! The last resolution of the year!

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While I think it’s nice to be nice (someone get me a thesaurus), I feel like this is a little anticlimactic for the final resolution, so I have something else in mind for the week.

For each day of the final week, I’m going to choose one of my other 51 resolutions to focus on. I will still be trying to say nice things all week – complimenting people, not being gossipy or negative – but I will have a second resolution to accomplish each day also.

So, for example, Wednesday might be the day I choose to eat healthy, or see how far I can run. Wait, Wednesday is Christmas? Well, forget that. I’m going to have to plan these very carefully it appears…

It’s definitely bittersweet writing about my last resolution. I have had so much fun doing this and have accomplished and experienced so many things this year that I most likely would not have if it weren’t for this project. While I’m really going to miss it in 2014, I have some other things up my sleeve for the year and I will enjoy having a little more time each week to focus on those. This blog won’t be going anywhere and I will still be doing weekly posts, so make sure to “like” the Nic on the Net Facebook page if you want to see what’s coming up next!

[Resolutions] – From Boots to Bow Ties

I have Christmas songs stuck in my head today so I apologize if there are some misplaced fa-la-la-la-la’s in here. I’m on Christmas overload right now, but in a good way. Tonight will be spent baking Rudolph and melted snowman cookies (might be a “Pinterest nail or fail?” post coming soon?) while trying to wrap a few gifts and listen to the holiday songs that are in my head. Good times.

Anyway, this week was a definite success. I didn’t wear a skirt or dress every single day (only four of them), but frankly, it’s too darn cold for that right now anyway. I still dressed up for the other two days, especially when compared to my normal work & weekend attire.

You might be thinking right now “wait just a minute, 4 + 2 = 6. But there are 7 days in a week…” Yes, smartypants, you are right. Thanks for pointing that out. Would you like to venture a guess as to which day I missed?

Wednesday – Started off the week with a sweater dress and even had time to curl my hair and take an obnoxious selfie in my dirty bathroom mirrors before work.

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Thursday – We had a film company visiting at work that day and were all told to dress nicely. I followed the rules, but ended up leaving work before the crew got there and went to finish Christmas shopping instead. Shopping in a skirt and heels? I think I am now eligible for sainthood.

Friday – I had a work event at night that required me to dress up, so this one was another dress and heels day. This week is not going to be good for my dry cleaning bill.

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Saturday – I was supposed to be going to a birthday party that night, but Snoowwwwmygosh 2013 made sure that didn’t happen. Instead I went out to dinner with a couple friends and still wore a dress (with leggings and boots, I’m not totally insane), which I would NEVER have done on a normal weekend. Not a fancy dress, but a nice enough one where I still felt better than jeans or yoga pants.

Sunday – Buuuuuuut then Sunday happened. Let’s see, did I even shower on Sunday? Oh, I did! I did, around 6pm, and then went outside to shovel out my car. This was about as dressy as Sunday got, but that’s what Sundays are for, right?

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Monday – When I woke up Monday morning, my phone said the temperature was 5 degrees. That’s it, just 5. Not 5-0, not even 2-5, just 5. Definitely a pants day. To make up for it, I wore a dressier blouse and a bow tie necklace, because everything is fancier when you’re rocking a bow tie.

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Tuesday – It may have been 10 degrees on Tuesday, so….yayy heatwave? Still a pants day, but I wore my new Loft dress pants that I’m in love with and made sure to curl my hair again instead of leaving it a wet, frizzy mess.

So there ya go, six days of dressing up and one obligatory day of rest. When I made some of these resolutions, I think I was a little over zealous with the “exercise EVERYday” or “dress up EVERYday”. It’s nice to try something new for an entire week, but in real life, there is no way that would continue throughout the year, and many of these things are resolutions I want to extend for….well, life.

Which means I need more bow ties.

[Resolutions] – ‘Tis the Season!

There is only one more resolution left in the jar after this, and I have a feeling I remember what that last one is, but this seems very appropriate for the week before Christmas.

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Last year, I helped a friend with her Birthday Project where you complete as many random acts of kindness as the age you are turning. Fortunately, this friend is younger than I am, so we were able to complete most of them in one day. We delivered bags of essentials to a homeless shelter, brought flowers to hospital patients who hadn’t had a lot of visitors, and made cookies to drop off at the local fire station. Her birthday is tomorrow (Happy Birthday, BFF!) and she is planning on doing this once again, so I hope to be able to help out. As cheesy as it sounds, it was really nice to see people so surprised to have something nice done for them and know that you just made their day a little bit better.

If our schedules don’t line up and I can’t help out with the Birthday Project this year, I have a few other things up my sleeve. Without getting all after school special on you guys, I am really excited for this week and being able to enjoy the “reason for the season”, instead of just worrying about finishing my Christmas shopping and eating ALL. the. cookies.

Which I’m still going to do, but now this will offset some of that extra stress and calories.

[Resolutions] – It All Worked Out (get it?)

Should we start with a poll about how well you think I did this week? Who thinks I only lasted two days? How about four? Anyone think I worked out for seven straight days? You must be new here.

I didn’t do too badly actually, at least not in my opinion, but I didn’t work out for the full seven days. Take your shocked face off. Those of you that guessed four days would be correct. I felt really guilty about that the last few days (although not guilty enough to sneak in a workout apparently), but then when I put it in perspective and think that if I had made just one or two resolutions in January, I would have quit them by February, mayyyyyybe March. So the fact that I’m still trying things with three weeks left in the year is pretty awesome to me. In that sense, I would say I’m pretty happy with how this week went.

Wednesday night I went down to the gym in our apartment and used the elliptical for 30 minutes. There are no pictures because I wasn’t alone in the gym and didn’t want to look like a total freak, but I did bring my tablet with me and read a great book while I worked out, so it was enjoyable.

On Thursday I woke up early before work (an accomplishment all by itself!) and decided to check out JessicaSmithTV. I did the 20-minute toned and jiggle-free (ha!) arms video, and then the 10-minute flat abs workout. My goal was to exercise for at least 30 minutes a day, so the combination of these two was perfect.

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On Friday we stayed in, made some holiday drinks, and watched a Christmas movie. I should have exercised before work again, but I didn’t plan well enough, and by 9pm it was pretty clear that it wasn’t gonna happen that day.

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I decided it would be ok to skip Friday as long as I added the 30 minutes to another day’s workout. Um…keep reading. Or, you know, don’t. Since you probably know me well enough by now.

On Saturday I plugged in the Wii and got in about 40 minutes of Just Dance. There are absolutely, definitely, without a doubt no pictures of this, but I did have fun and I have to say, it’s a damn good workout. I was sweating quite a bit. Probably could have left that last line out, but…you know, keepin’ it real.

I needed some extra motivation on Sunday so I dragged Dan with me for a walk around the neighborhood to look at Christmas lights. It was very cold, but he was a good sport, and we did get to see some lights along with our breath.

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Monday I planned to work out for 60 minutes to make up for Friday, but instead I did some weird kind of exercise math and ended up working out for zero minutes? To make up for Friday?

And then Tuesday happened and….nope.

So, as you can see, my week kind of fell apart at the end, but I really am happy with the workouts that I did. Working out four days a week for someone who doesn’t usually make time for exercise at all is still a pretty good outcome. Right? Or am I just making excuses?

Because I am good at those.

[Resolutions] – Dressing Up Week 50

I knew this one was left in the jar and I have been sort of torn about what I would do if I picked it.

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I remember writing this one almost a year ago now and thinking about how I just feel so much better when I take the time to dress up and look nice. It really just changes my whole day. Am I alone here?

That being said, I usually find myself in a rush before work, and since I can get away with wearing not-so-dressy pants and equally un-dressy tops, I frequently do. I’ve even rocked a corduroy or two. Then there are the times where I don’t bother drying my hair (because I spent too much time catching up on the DVR instead) and I leave it a stringy, frizzy mess. Usually by lunch time I want to take a half-day because I feel so self-conscious that I want to shower and start over.

However, if I wear a dress to work every day for a week, people are going to think I have an interview or something weird going on. It just doesn’t happen often. This is actually the perfect work week for me to have pulled this resolution (other than one where I have the week off) because I already have to dress up Thursday and Friday for work events. The other 3 work days….well, we will call it “dressed up” if I make it there in nice pants or a skirt, straightened hair, or maybe even some curls.

The weekend might be another story entirely, as I sit here writing this in yoga pants, a sweatshirt, and wet hair…

Holiday Gift Guide

So I have been seeing gift guides everywhere I look lately: in magazines, on some of my favorite blogs, even in news segments. Some of them have great ideas that I hadn’t thought of and I was inspired to share some of my own ideas. Mostly though, I just had a lot of fun putting this post together and making the graphic below!

Everything you see below is either an item that I bought for someone on my list or something that I would want to receive myself. Ill let you guess which is which 😉 Here we go!

Holiday Gift Guide 2013

  1. Phone Case – Everyone has a cell phone these days, so you can’t go wrong with a cute case (actually, I guess you could go wrong if you don’t know what model phone they have, so make sure you find out first!). Etsy has some great ones that range from quirky to glittery to fun. I’m really loving the pay phone one and may even buy that for myself!
  2. Gift Cards – I have a thing against gift cards and I really don’t know why. I hate buying them as gifts because I feel like it’s not very personal, but I love receiving them because it’s basically like a plastic shopping spree. A lot of people on my list specifically request gift cards, so I’ve bought a lot more of them in recent years. Something like Amazon, Target, or Phantom Gourmet (if you’re local) always work if you don’t have a specific store in mind.
  3. Candles – I am obsessed with these. This is clearly one that’s on my own list, but I have bought them for others as well. Winter Candy Apple? SO. Freaking. Good.
  4. Subscription Boxes – A subscription box would be like the gift that keeps on giving! Whoever you gift it to will receive a package in the mail to enjoy for many months after Christmas. Birchbox would be a great idea for a beauty product junkie like myself, Conscious Box would be great for a health-conscious, foodie friend, and BarkBox would even make your dog happy!
  5. Chromecast – I actually bought one of these for Dan for Christmas, but ended up giving it to him at Hanukkah instead. When I bought it, I didn’t even realize all the ways it could be used and we have spent several nights now watching YouTube videos on the TV, playing Tic Tac Toe against each other (on TV using our phones and

[Resolutions] – Family Matters

I just kind of stole that title from TGIF. You won’t tell, will you?

This year, for turkey day, I drove out to my mom’s house the morning of the holiday rather than the night before. It was mostly because I didn’t want to drive in the rainy weather that would inevitably make the Mass Pike something out of a horror movie (remember this?), but it allowed me to see more of my family than I normally would. Usually I travel on Wednesday night, sleep at my mom’s, have breakfast with her, and then head out to my aunt’s on my dad’s side of the family. I usually go right back to my own apartment after that, but this year I stayed and visited at a cousin’s house and then traveled home the following morning instead. Which means I was not at the mall for any part of Black Friday, and for that, I am very thankful.

I’m working on getting some of my family together on Christmas Eve, but it’s harder now than it used to be with divorced families and everyone’s significant others multiplying the number of places we all need to be. If Christmas Eve doesn’t work out, we’ve already thrown out a few dates for a family game night at our apartment. If one of those doesn’t work, we will have to try again next month!

Thanksgiving obviously made this resolution easy for the week, but I hope to keep it going for the rest of…well, life.

p.s. Sorry there are no pictures with this post, but I somehow managed not to take any the entire time I was with family. I would throw in some random internet pictures, but I need to go work out before I change my mind.

[Resolutions] – This Could Have Gone So Much Worse

Thank gawwwwwwd this came the week AFTER Thanksgiving.

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I really didn’t think about that when I set this up. I knew that I had two weeks that involved exercise, but I figured, hey, who can’t use two weeks of exercise in a year? I never really considered that I might pick them in consecutive weeks and wouldn’t that have been a nightmare? The answer is yes, in my world, working out for 14 days straight is a nightmare. So is working out during a food coma resulting from two Thanksgiving meals. Actually, there are few times in my world where working out is NOT a nightmare, but I really feel like I could use it this week.

I kind of already did this earlier this year when I had to Work Out Every Day. Now I have to try a different work out every day. This might be somewhat of a challenge since I don’t belong to a gym anymore and can’t take classes, but we will figure something out.

Shopping is a work out, right?

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I quite like celebrating Hanukkah AND Christmas.

[Resolutions] – F.

Ok, so…

You guys probably remember that my weeks start on Wednesday and go through Tuesday. There is nothing showing on my Google calendar from Wednesday to Friday, but yet I don’t even remember what I did any of those nights. It wasn’t learning HTML though. It was probably some combination of cleaning, food shopping, internetting, cleaning, rinse, repeat.

The weekend? I don’t remember that either with the exception of Saturday night. If you were with me for any other part of it, please let me know what I did. I wasn’t drunk, I don’t have amnesia or dementia, I just….can’t remember. But I didn’t learn HTML.

Then on Monday I remembered that I only had two days left to fulfill this week’s resolution and I looked up a few things online about coding, but I think I then got distracted by searching Pinterest for Thanksgiving desserts and snacks. Side note – I’m making these:

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By Tuesday night I had already worked 3.5 hours later than usual and had to stop at the grocery store on the way home to fight the Thanksgiving crowds. It wasn’t too bad, but getting home at 7pm and then spending 25 minutes on the phone with your mom, making a veggie burger, cleaning cat litter (yay.), and catching up on emails doesn’t leave much time for learning HTML.

Oh, and then I spent over an hour researching one of these:

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I NEEEEEEED one of those. Santa, if you’re reading this, make it happen. Please. It’s like Lisa Frank for grown-ups (am I allowed to even call myself that?)

So there was no learning happening this week. I failed and got a big, fat F on this one. Resolutions were not made for holiday weeks during your busy time at work. I do think I will eventually learn this, though, because I am pretty close to being able to transfer this blog over to WordPress soon and I will need to know a few basic things in order to tweak my theme the way I want it to look.

For now, I’m just going to seriously look into parental controls on Pinterest.

Nope, not a grown up.