Monthly Archives: February 2011

Feelings In Progess


By this time next week, I will either be like

Or all

Justin has hidden a box of Samoas on a high shelf somewhere in case of emergencies.

Update: day one of Singulair, I had the worst headache of my life and I was a little afraid. But by day three, I could run three miles straight without chest-crushing wheezies. Best drug ever! I’ve already lost 3 more pounds! Hay!

I’ll be able to tell  you more later. And hell, maybe I’ll be halfway to my goal by then! (That, or full of Samoas and fish fry and champagne4pain.)

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I Am Stephie’s Body

I Am Stephie’s Allergies (and Paranoia)

Do any of you take Singulair? My allergy doctor just gave it to me to help with Chauncey sniffles and sexy treadmill wheezing.* Obviously I just scanned the list of side effects and am imagining all this potential swelling and nausea happening to me at once, while asleep because I have to take it at night. Will I live to see tomorrow, you guys?

Actually I have bigger problems; one of the warnings was to not take this medicine if you have phenylketonuria, a condition where you have to follow a special diet or you end up with mental retardation. WHAAAAAAAAT. How have I lived my entire life without worrying about this?

My biggest concern is that apparently it causes mood swings and makes people irritable, anxious and angry. I’ve taken medicine that resulted in mood swings before and it really scared me. I have a 30 day sample and a follow-up appointment so I guess we’ll see in a month, huh? (Please tell me if I’m being a jerk.)

I could google more, but I’ve been honing my self-control skills over the past two years and clearly I’m not a person who should look up medical stuff on the Internet.

I Am Stephie’s Genes (and Paranoia)

Somewhat related, I got the results of my 23andMe sample. Nothing too earth shattering. Apparently I am a descendant of white people in Europe noshit? I’m carrying one marker for a few different diseases but am not at risk for much stuff. I’m, like, 2% more likely than normal to develop esophageal cancer, but I just CT scanned my neck so I don’t have to worry about that for a few years.

I’m realizing now that if the results had been worse, combined with my technology-induced hypochondria, that kit could’ve put me in the looney bin. That was close.

I Am Stephie’s Tummy (and Bangin Ass!)

Back to superficial stuff – I finally lost the 4 pounds I gained from last weekend (did I mention the Sunday breakfast buffet? I Ron-Swansoned a breakfast buffet). I can’t believe it only took 2 days to recover. WORTH IT.

So … I’m at a 14 lb. loss right now (35% of my goal)! I’ll hit at least 15 by the end of the week. It should be no problem, considering I’ll be able to run now! (Unless I flip over a treadmill in a fit of Singulair-induced rage.)

*She told me to stay away from Chauncey, too. Talk to the paw, lady. Not gonna happen. (This is especially hilarious if you know about the top secret endeavor I’ve been up to lately.)


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Rock Lobster

I WAS all excited to come back from my trip this weekend and tell you that I’ve lost 15 pounds, hitting a big milestone. But then this happened:

And this:

And this:

And then some mushroom truffles tag teamed with some butter to throw more carbs in the mix:

Not to mention 4 reislings. (Okay, 6 if you count right now.) And the giant German schnitzelthingy I had hours earlier at the Hofbräuhaus in Newport, not knowing what was in store for dinner.

Justin’s dad has a friend who, like, just for the hell of it treated us to a night at the Belterra Resort and Casino. He paid for our rooms (including a suite for Justin’s parents) and a dinner in the private room at Jeff Ruby’s Steakhouse. “Order whatever you want. Go crazy,” he insisted. Um, okay?

The salad was so pretty!

The shrimp was as big as my head!

My lemon had a hairnet!

“Is that The Godfather on the wall??!”

“Do we get to drink all this wine?”



P.S. I AM AMAZING AT ROULETTE. I won $75 betting on my daddy’s birthday. What have the Tollivers done to me?


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Between A Rock And A Sinus

Nothing new to tell you, really – I just have a rare breather this morning and miss the times when I would write in here daily. It felt like you guys were like my lunch table in the cafeteria; I had to update you on the dumbest of happenings every day. So get ready for some excitement filler:

The only cool thing that’s happened this week is that I’m at a 12 pound loss – that’s 30% of my goal! Yeah buddy! My pants are at that beautiful stage where they only fit fresh out of the dryer; otherwise they feel like they’re going to fall off me at any second. I love that. Today I feel cuter than I have in months.

These days, my life consists of  workworkwork, chores, Y, shower, tea, snuggle, read, bed. Every single weekday. My life has changed a lot and I’m going through a bit of a hibernation, or maybe a metamorphosis. I’m cocooned in this rigid routine while all the changes are happening, and it feels exciting even though on the surface it’s incredibly boring.

Though this week, a sinus infection has arrived to stir up some excitement, along with some sexy wheezing that appears when I’m a mile into my run at the Y. I’m seeing an allergy doctor on Tuesday to get some Chauncey advice, but if she thinks the Y wheezing is asthma then I’ll go to Dr. Chuck.

I don’t even have time for the creative writing I wanted to accomplish this month, though I was invited to join a writing workshop so my Year Plus goal isn’t a total loss. Maybe next time there’s a prompt, I’ll give it a shot. (Though, I think I’m still exhausted from all those Advanced Writing Workshops I took in college – I’m a bit like, “Why the hell did I willingly walk into this when I’m just trying to enjoy writing?” We’ll see.

Justin had a Pills Night at TV Time and I pity everyone who missed it. Pill addict episodes from Diff’rent Strokes, Fresh Prince, 90210, Saved By The Bell, etc. So good. He may be reviving the “Gangs” theme from Rooftop TV; I can’t wait.

The other day I had a major cryfest about some stressful stuff. I felt pretty weak about it, but Justin made this awesome point that in the past two years, I’ve gotten rid of almost all my stress relievers. Smoking, alcohol, comfort food, Ativan, Ambien … I don’t turn to that stuff anymore;  I just run. And thanks to this new wheezing, the only stress reliever I have left is missing.

So while I was covered in snot and feeling like such an asshole (I haven’t cried from stress like that in years) he kept hugging me and saying that he was so proud of me for not trying to mask it with unhealthy junk. Isn’t that the best?

Today is our year and a half anniversary. My sinuses hurt like hell when I tilt my head up to kiss him, but I’ll d0 it anyway. I may be a boring loser right now, but I’m feeling pretty lucky.


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Do I Have The Hots For Patrick Stump?!


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Grilled Cheese Party!

I’m not sure how the idea came to me. I’ve always wanted to have people over for barbecues, but living in a loft makes that impossible. I had been brainstorming ideas for a good party, and then one day I wanted a grilled cheese, and then one day both thoughts hit my brain at the same time, I guess. I’m actually surprised it took this long because I always want a grilled cheese.

And then I turned 30. And officially moved in. It was an excuse to go balls out, partywise.

Here’s the spread:

Cheese: American, Cheddar, Provolone, Pepper Jack, Gouda, Rosemary Asiago and English White Cheddar. Later, Ron brought White American and Colby.

Bread: Wonder Bread, Honey Wheat, Sourdough, Thick Cut (Texas Toast), and a Baguette cut up for mini Grilled Cheese samplers.

Fixins: Bacon, Tomato, Avocado, Figs, Caramelized Onions,Prosciutto, Artichoke Spread, Jalapenos, Honey Crisp Apples and Hot Sauce. Later I busted out Grape Jelly and Erin made an awesome jam that she can explain in the comments.

Trader Joe’s Tomato Soup was generously provided by Brent and Sarah.

Cookie Cake from Justin:

Justin also had a Bloody Mary Bar on his workbench!  He comes from a long line of Bloody Mary drinkers and had like 4 family recipes to choose from.

All in all, there were about 20 guests. There was enough food for everyone to build their fantasy grilled cheese (and another grilled cheese to see if it topped the first). The leftovers were perfect during the “great” “blizzard” on Tuesday.

My fantasy grilled cheese included white cheddar, figs and bacon. I made a similar one the next day with gouda, white american and chedder.

The most shocking part of my party was that everyone found free parking on the street. My neighborhood is packed every weekend by 7pm. Usually the building next door has weddings receptions on the top three floors  every Saturday. I was sad there weren’t any receptions on my birthday because drunk guests always stare at the lofts and get so excited when you wave at them; I thought my friends would get a kick out of that. But looking back, they probably appreciated the free parking spots more.

I got too many awesome gifts to list. I think my friends all liked the loft. Everyone got along. Chauncey was nice to people (aside from leaping onto Ron’s nuts) and didn’t attack folks when they peaked into the treehouse. No one left the stove on or set off the fire sprinklers. The screamy guy next door didn’t scream. No one got shot or mugged. I turned 30 ( wearing pigtails half the time in protest) and survived.

So, Justin had a TV Party where we watched classic episodes of people turning 30 and I rocked the Grilled Cheese Party … what should we do next? (I like bribing my friends to drive downtown.)

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EDITED TO ADD: I googled “Grilled Cheese Party” to see if a lot of people have done this, and apparently Martha Stewart suggested this on Oprah last October, including the part about the Bloody Mary Bar! Between my love of cheese and Justin’s heritage, I assure you the idea was organic. Y’all, I have a day job; I can’t keep up with those chicks. (Besides: rye, fontina, relish and arugula? I would not have missed those if I was copycatting. Dang.)


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February Plus: Writing (and Downtown Lametown)

It was strange to see my street so dead at 5pm (this is where most downtown folks come for happy hour and games), but other than that, this “historic” blizzard has been a bunch of BS. We were promised 20+ inches of snow, and nothing. (Well, ice … but nothing remarkable.) I can’t believe I wasted a good “Ask To Work From Home And Piss Off My Boss” for this.

I had an über-productive day (I always do when I work from home) and now I’m kicking back with some Pig Radio for some fun writing and relaxation. I’ve got a good view (and s’mores. I have s’mores):


So I had wanted my February Plus to be Religion, for reasons I’ll (briefly) explain next month, but –

v. raising elle


Grovesnor is covering “With Every Heartbeat” on Pig Radio right now. I die.


– but I’m busy every Sunday next month (family visits, Superbowl, a ski trip, etc.), and I want to go to (gay friendly) church every Sunday whenever I do it. So next month, probably.

This month, I’m going to write creatively every day for at least 20 minutes. (I’d say 30, but I’m still trying to work out every day, too, and I don’t know if it’s possible to do both when my workouts are usually an hour.) I’m going to bust out this monthly box of moleskines that Justin got me (shutit) and fill up as many as I can. I’m also going to finally finish my gorgeous copy of What It Is (a writing workbook written by my hero Lynda Barry, based on her workshops) and try to do as many exercises in the book as possible.

As you can probably tell, lately I’ve been so discouraged about writing during my day job that I’ve almost forgotten why I loved it in the first place. It’s gotten to the point where I have trouble writing here, too. I want that fire back. So here we go.

P.S. This is what I’ll be surrounded by while I do it … positivity and productivity.  Virtual Loft Tour coming soon!



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