The Stuff of Life

Wednesday, April 18th

Interaction

I ran with my well-conditioned, Colorado-raised, track athlete friend first thing this morning (hi, Abby!). It was a quick 3 miles, but she helped me push the pace (which was probably her easy pace). It was a glorious morn though!

I feel like I have a tibial stress fracture and patellofemoral pain syndrome though #PTschoolsyndrome.

Today, I was blessed with many fun conversations and social interactions… or at least, with more people than usual. And it’s entirely because I chose to not be a studying hermit who has her nose buried in her book laptop all day. I mean, I have to do that a little bit in order to actually get work done, but today I let myself talk to and just be around more people who I see every day but never really interact with for more than 30 seconds at a time. I know I have to sacrifice fun time for study time very often, because then I’d never get work done, but my heart is filled with extra joy because of these new and life-giving interactions.

It’s the stuff of life. Good for ya.

Thursday, April 19th

Snooze

I don’t usually hit snooze these days, but I hit it three times this morning instead of going to the gym, and I don’t regret it.

Randomly, there was a free clam chowder tasting/voting at the student union this afternoon. New England student perks!!

Particularly welcomed on a cold, rainy day like today.

I’m currently listening to “You’ll Be in My Heart” by Phil Collins as I type this on my phone. Thought some of you would appreciate that.

Friday, April 20th

Skills

My PT friends and I worked a lot on our skills today for our practical exam coming up next Thursday. What that means is a) stress; b) we have to be able to examine, treat, and rationalize anything and everything about the lower extremity; c) stress.

Luckily, we like doing this stuff.

I even got to examine my friend’s knee today and {unofficially} “diagnose” him as the student PT that I am. I told him to take everything I say with a grain of salt and to go to a real PT, but it was still good practice and fun to help someone with a real musculoskeletal issue rather than hypothetical ones. I also taught him how to deadlift (“from the H I P S”).

Other things: I did half of this workout this morning, and it killed me (as it always does). I played soccer with some friends (although I wasn’t aggressive because I really think there’s something wrong with my tibia / I suck at soccer). I ate ice cream twice tonight. A good day!

Saturday, April 21st

Human

60 and sunny, yes puh-lease.

I spent the beginning and end of my day with my dear friend, Kelsey, and one thing that she reassured to me repeatedly as we had some heart gushing sessions was: “It’s okay to feel that way, because you have a human heart.”

So often, I am very hard on myself for feeling upset or frustrated about certain things that I know I should get over or not be upset about in the first place. But our hearts do feel things for a reason, and it’s not our place to judge ourselves, just as we wouldn’t judge others. This doesn’t mean we need to sit in melancholy or sorrow for ourselves, because that’s not good, but we don’t have to beat ourselves up for feeling a certain way. We just take that opportunity to know that Jesus felt exactly what we feel, except in the deepest, purest form, so we can unite our human heart to His human yet also Divine heart.

We had cider flights to celebrate Kelsey’s birthday that was on Thursday!! So fun.

Happy Sunday, friends.

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One Word

I have this idea to select one “word of the day” for each mini blog post that I’m now doing. It came to me in a vision (i.e. random shower thought probably).

Sunday, April 15

Restore

Today was a good day. However, today was also an emotionally hard day, and honestly, many days have been that way these past few weeks. But at Mass today, the priest preached about the difference between rightful sorrow and just plain ol’ wallowing.

I’m a wallower sometimes. If I’m sad about something, turn up the sad songs and cue the heavy hearts, because sometimes, I’d rather feel melancholy than feel nothing at all. But w h y. Yes, there is so much to be sorrowful about, because there are many things that happen in this world that ought not to happen. But this is not how things end. Christ gives us hope through His Death and Resurrection, and He restores our joy. He weeps with us, but then He raises us to new life with Him.

I cried many tears tonight, but this thought remained with me and consoled me.

Monday, April 16

Heart

We had pancakes and mimosas to start the day!!

Because it’s Monday. Also, because it’s marathon Monday / Patriot’s Day here in Boston, and some of us had a day off from work/School. Rachel, Zoe and I celebrated with some goods to start our day off on a highly sweet note.

I only watched the marathon for about 30 minutes to catch two of my friends running it. The conditions were disgusting out there — torrential rain, wind, 40 degrees. I had to keep myself from complaining walking in it all day when so many people were running/arm biking/walking/rucking 26.2 miles in it.

This year more than ever — perhaps because my heart has been drinking in every ounce of inspiration and encouragement it can get (or perhaps because it was straight up miserable outside) — I noticed how much the marathoners endured the course with their hearts, more so than their bodies. Trudging through that weather at mile 23 (where we were spectating), was symbolism and grit at its best, and I am so grateful to have witnessed it. No better way to start the week, I say. #GoDesi!!

It almost makes me want to run a marathon. But the other day I told Rachel that I don’t see the need to run 26.2 miles in my life. If there’s an apocalypse and I need to run 26.2 miles from zombies who are about to eat my brains, I’m willing to take the L on that one.

Tuesday, April 17

Waiting

Alllllllright, we are ready for warm weather here. It’s crisp and beautiful outside, so I’m grateful for that, but winter jackets need to go. May is almost here, so we’re just waiting for those consistent 60-70 degree temperatures to hit any time now…

Other things I’m waiting for:

  • Graduation
  • A couple fun trips this summer (dying to go camping to see stars)
  • Rachel’s pre-wedding festivities/actual wedding
  • …just whatever the next hour/day brings, because “life is a highway; I wanna ride it all night long.” ← name that artist!

Today’s moves and grooves was a quick 20 minute workout, 30 seconds on, 10 off, 5 rounds:

  • TRX rows
  • around the world ball toe taps
  • TRX ab rollouts
  • TRX atomic pushups
  • ball jumper-over burpees
  • situps

 

 

A Wise Friend and a Bunch of Little Things

G o o d. G r i e f.

I got charged by WordPress the other week for my annual fee to keep the dailymovesandgrooves.com domain name, and I was in awe of how much this blog has fallen to the wayside (also in awe of my credit card statement #yikes). I have no regrets though. Honestly, blogging is nearly impossible given my other priorities in life right now.

But a wise friend once told me that if I blogged 5-10 minutes per day, I could rack up some decent content by the end of the week. So I’ll try that now. Might as well bring it back to the DAILY in DAILY MOVES AND GROOVES. Unsure as to why I capitalized all of that, but there it is, in case you forgot the name of this blog.

Wednesday, April 11

We’re heading into Marathon weekend here in Boston, and as I was walking to get my PPD shot, I’m pretty sure I passed by some elite marathoners. I didn’t actually know who they were, but I took this stalker photo anyway in case they’re famous. Fun to be back on the blog (feels like my first time riding a bike after a decade or something though; I can do this, but also whoOoooOA).

Thursday, April 12

I’m sitting in the gross anatomy lab having just lectured on the compartments of the lower leg and how to find muscles and tendons by your ankle. I also just perused bridesmaids dresses for Rachel’s wedding and I am stoked. I LOVE DRESS SHOPPING AND I LOVE WEDDINGS.

But also, what the heck!? My best friend is getting married this year. My best friend who I met as a derpy freshman four years ago. Even though I have two more years of grad school left for a fairly promising field of work, I’ve never felt so blind to the future. Yet I’ve never felt so excited for the future. Not just my own future, but that of all my loved ones as well. It’s certainly not because any of us knows what’s going to happen. Rather, it’s because none of us has a freaking clue. We have no idea what lies ahead, but we know that God does know, and that’s everything. He’s pulled us in the most unexpected and tumultuous directions in these past four years throughout our whole lives, but it’s all unfolded as a painfully beautiful and beautifully painful story — all of it very good though.

In other news, I finished a large tub of cookies and cream ice cream by myself since Easter. I gave up dairy for Lent, so I went all in with alleluias and celebrations.

Lastly, moves and grooves from today…

20 min workout (30 seconds work, 10 seconds rest, 5 rounds):

  • battle rope alt. arms
  • reverse lunge to front kick R (25#)
  • reverse lunge to front kick L
  • pushup DB pull through
  • alternating step up hops (20”)
  • hollow flutters to double v-ups

Friday, April 13

Today I ran my first over-4-mile run of this semester! It was 4.7 miles — a decision made on a whim. I wore a tank top and shorts outside. Weather says 33 degrees and wintry mix on Sunday though LOL.

I also happened to walk another 10 miles today and eat a sufficient amount of peanut butter to match that.

Including this crispy peanut tofu for dinner

Saturday, April 14th

Sights and sounds on my one-hour walk from home to downtown Boston for Mass:

  • A little boy excitedly petting a corgi puppy
  • A tiny wiener dog wearing a t-shirt
  • A little girl running with her large dog, followed by her sister and mom
  • My friend, Ray, who often sits in front of the local Whole Foods
  • A quick stop to my friends’ apartment to drop off Worcestershire sauce
  • Boston accents loudly advertising hot dogs and programs all along Landsdowne Street next to Fenway Park
  • What seemed like thousands of people wearing their Boston Marathon jackets and picking up their bibs
  • My friends praying before Mass
  • And best for last, Jesus waiting for me at St. Francis Chapel in the middle of the bustling Prudential Center

It’s really cool living in Boston.

The Mess of Life

Hello.

Greetings from NY! I figured I should write a blog post while I’m on spring break. It’s sad and strange that I don’t automatically think to write a blog post in my spare time anymore. This blog means so much to me, but I feel it slipping through the cracks (JK it slipped through the cracks, like, 6 months ago).

This blog has evolved as I have evolved as a person. I still have great interest in food and fitness, but there are simply (or rather, less simply) more things to which I need to direct my attention and energy in this season of life.

One of those things is academics. Things are still busy, but now that the great learning curve of my first graduate semester has passed, PT school has become a bit more exciting, and I have yet to approach the brink of despair (*overdramatized for effect*) as I did last semester. I also completed a 6-week, part-time clinical in a long term acute care hospital, which I loved (not just because I got to wear scrubs aka the work-acceptable pajamas). It’s all still hard work, but I’d be worried if it wasn’t so.

could be worse

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Academics is 50% of life. The other 50% is just this wild freakin’ ride that my heart and soul are on right now. It’s like one of those rickety wooden rollercoasters (actually my fave kind) that have superb thrill factor but could also snap and break at any moment.

There is only so much I am willing to share about this roller coaster of my life, but overall, I have learned a lot.

I’ve learned about what is too much for my heart to handle.

I’ve learned about what makes my heart truly joyful and at peace.

I’ve learned how to be honest with myself regarding both of those things.

I’ve learned that I make so many mistakes over and over again, despite having good intentions.

I’ve learned about my weaknesses and what I really need from others.

I’ve learned about my strengths and what I can give to others.

I’ve learned to find the good in others, but also to put down my foot when others are not good for me.

I’ve learned that it is better to find beauty in pain than to find pain in what seems beautiful on the surface.

I’ve learned to be okay with all of the above, because life is a MESS. A. Darn. Mess. That’s my word of the year so far, and I’m okay with that.

I’ve learned that God is here in this mess and that I don’t have to run away from it all. He never changes and reminds me always that He has never abandoned me and He never will. He is faithful, and He makes all things new.

And on top of all that/to change subject, my best friend is engaged (and she asked me to be her maid of honor AHHHH)!!!

Rachel visited NY for spring break earlier this week too! It was nice to spend time with the bride-to-be. Truly just having heart to heart conversations from morning ’til night.

I also co-directed the Catholic Center retreat this semester with my friend Austin, so that was a doozy. But more than anything, it was a wonderful and humbling experience. The theme was “beauty through humility and obedience,” which I suggested in the first place, but I didn’t realize how much I personally needed that message this semester until we were on retreat.

hearts that are His #retreat #totustuus

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Me: “What’s something we both like to do?” ➔ Austin: “Uhhh, work out?” ➔ Me: “Okay, we shall flex.”

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the seniors ♥ 

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Sarah, a source of peace and joy

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sums up my friendship with Janice (so much love and appreciation for her)

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the killer retreat team

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“More tortuous than all else is the human heart, beyond remedy; who can understand it? I, the LORD, alone probe the mind and test the heart…”

— Jeremiah 17: 9-10

^^^Too true.

Alive and well. Breathing and smiling. Failing and learning. Praying and growing.

My mess is minuscule compared to others’ messes, but it’s all one big Jackson Pollock painting — pretty cool in the end.

So tell me:

About the mess in your life.

Something new you did this past month!

 

Virtual Breakfast Date

Hey, hi, hello, let’s meet and eat.

virtual breakfast date

…I would {obviously} peek at what you’re having for breakfast. Here’s what I’m having this morning:

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To wipe that disgusted/confused look off some of your faces, I’d explain that it’s an overnight oat smoothie blended with greens this morning and topped with the crunchiest purple corn flakes (I just attempted to find which brand it was, because we threw out the box, but I’m not sure which one it is!). I would assure you that it tastes delicious. Wanna try a bite?

…I would say never mind, don’t have a bite. I came down with a fever a few days ago and I feel 95% recovered, but my throat still hurts a bit, so don’t take your chances.

…I would attribute my sickness to two days in a row of theme parks in less-than-ideal weather. But with an ideal theme park companion by my side! My dear friend, Lauren (fellow air saxophone and groovy tune enthusiast), visited us in Florida for a few days after New Years, and we had a grand ol’ time.

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The night she arrived, Madre and I (poor Pop was the first to get a fever that night) took her to Disney Springs for dinner and perusing. We shared so many hysterical laughs at the silliest things, and it was the best.

…I would exclaim that dinner at Paddlefish was STELLAR. They started us off with the fluffiest bread with honey cinnamon butter, and now I think honey cinnamon butter should be on every table across the nation. Lauren got the mahi-mahi special, which had a macadamia nut crust and sat on top of crab fried rice. Madre got the fish and chips, which came with two giant pieces of perfectly crispy fried cod and sweet potato fries (her absolute favorite). And I got the scallops with bacon, crispy brussels sprouts, and cauliflower puree. We all shared bites of each other’s dishes, and everything was blissful.

We finished the meal with their “charred carrot cake,” which was three times larger than I was expecting. It came with excellent vanilla ice cream, shortbread crumbles and little fried carrots *jaw drops*. We took most of it home.

…I would stop drooling over my past meal and continue the story of our fun evening. Following dinner, we walked around and admired the charm of overpriced Disney merchandise.

mom: “kiss the Lego girl!” *obey* mom: “alison you need to be closer” 🤭

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THEN WE DANCED…and participated in a lip synch competition that was 20 minutes longer than we were expecting. I posted some of the craziness on Instagram:

I was l i v i n g. This is basically what I do in my room by myself when I’m bored, except this time I was less loser status and actually had an audience! Having Lauren there was extra fun, because she’s often my groove buddy.

…I would tell you that we went to Universal Studios and Disney’s Magic Kingdom the next two days. It was rainy and chilly on Universal day, so some of the rides were down unfortunately.

after v. before the rain at universal studios #hunchbacksofharrypotterworld

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Lauren and I managed to have a nice time at Harry Potter World though, sipping warm Butterbeer, eating delicious ice cream from Florean Fontescue, and remarking at how Diagon Alley = diagonally, and Knockturn Alley = nocturnally. But the Revenge of the Mummy ride outside of HP World was our favorite. We went twice.

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Magic Kingdom was…fine. Mistake #1 was arriving at 11am, which is way too late for a theme park like Disney. It was utterly packed that day (the wait for Space Mountain kept teetering between 2.5 to 4 hours lol), and also utterly FREEZING for Florida. I was quite underdressed and just miserable by the end of the day, but it was still fun hanging out with Lauren all day and even meeting up with our friend Domenica and her cousins sometime in there (bottom middle photo)!

…I would say that Lauren really made the theme parks fun. If it weren’t for her humor and both of our “well…we’ll work with what we got” personalities, it would have been a rather disappointing two days. But anything can be a great time if you let it be.

…I would wish you warmth! As we road-tripped home from FL to NY this weekend, it felt like the movie The Day After Tomorrow when the ice was invading the city like a wave. Just coldness creeping and increasing with every pit stop. I’m such a baby when it comes to the cold. You’d think I’d be okay with it living in the Northeast for 12 years, but nah.

…I would say that I’ve been eating ohhhhh so well this winter break. But I’m sure you’ve noticed.

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Yes, we did go to Popeyes on our road trip. It was one of the greasiest most delicious things I’ve ever put into my mouth. Other things have included desserts from my brother and his girlfriend (she got me banana pudding from Magnolia bakery!), sushi (I think NY has the best sushi in the northeast), and mom’s homemade food (*angels singing*).

…I would laugh at how I had coffee date with a friend in a heated train station yesterday. My friend who I met abroad in Ireland, Cristen, and I got hot beverages and muffins from The Black Cow yesterday, but there were no seats left in the tiny coffee shop. Thus, I asked the cashier if she knew any place nearby where we could just sit and chat, and she suggested the train station… So we went.

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These chairs were actually attached to the floor because they were more like art pieces, I think. But it was heated in there, sort of. I had to push a button every 20 minutes that said, “PRESS IF YOU WANT HEAT.” YES WE WANT HEAT.

Cristen and I are up for anything though, and we had a lovely time catching up on life. I’m not a coffee drinker, so I had the steamed milk and honey (loved it) and a morning glory muffin.

Soul warmed by conversation and esophagus warmed by hot beverages.

…I would shut up now because this post is so long and ask you:

What are you eating for breakfast?

Have you ever had a less-than-ideal theme park experience?

Tell me about an odd situation you’ve experienced recently.

How was your first week of 2018?