Monthly Archives: January 2014

January Vocabulary Words

One of the goals on my 2014 manifesto was to learn a new vocabulary word each day. With the help of daily emails from dictionary.com, this goal is super easy to accomplish. These are the words for January:

January 1:

inchoation \in-koh-EY-shuhn\, noun:

a beginning; origin.

January 2: 

punnet \PUHN-it\, noun:

a small container or basket for strawberries or other fruit.

January 3: 

delitescent \del-i-TES-uhnt\, adjective:

concealed; hidden; latent.

January 4: 

skosh \skohsh\, noun:

Slang. a bit; a jot: We need just a skosh more room.

January 5: 

cede \seed\, verb:

to yield or formally surrender to another: to cede territory.

January 6: 

terminus \TUR-muh-nuhs\, noun:

1. the end or extremity of anything.
2. either end of a railroad line.
3. British. the station or the town at the end of a railway or bus route.
4. the point toward which anything tends; goal or end.

January 7: 

lea \lee, ley\, noun:

1. a tract of open ground, especially grassland; meadow.
2. land used for a few years for pasture or for growing hay, then plowed over and replaced by another crop.
3. a crop of hay on tillable land.

adjective:
1. untilled; fallow.

January 8: 

welkin \WEL-kin\, noun:

the sky; the vault of heaven.

January 9: 

comport \kuhm-PAWRT, -POHRT\, verb:

1. to bear or conduct (oneself); behave: He comported himself with dignity.
2. to be in agreement, harmony, or conformity (usually followed by with): His statement does not comport with the facts.

January 10: 

wamble \WOM-buhl, -uhl, WAM-\, verb:

1. to move unsteadily.
2. to feel nausea.
3. (of the stomach) to rumble; growl.

noun:
1. an unsteady or rolling movement.
2. a feeling of nausea.

January 11: 

mot \moh\, noun:

1. a pithy or witty remark; bon mot.
2. Archaic. a note on a horn, bugle, etc.

January 12: 

hurdy-gurdy \HUR-dee-GUR-dee, -gur-\, noun:

1. a barrel organ or similar musical instrument played by turning a crank.
2. a lute- or guitar-shaped stringed musical instrument sounded by the revolution against the strings of a rosined wheel turned by a crank.

January 13: 

infinitesimal \in-fin-i-TES-uh-muhl\, adjective:

1. indefinitely or exceedingly small; minute: infinitesimal vessels in the circulatory system.
2. immeasurably small; less than an assignable quantity: to an infinitesimal degree.
3. of, pertaining to, or involving infinitesimals.

January 14: 

antebellum \AN-tee-BEL-uhm\, adjective:

before or existing before a war, especially the American Civil War; prewar: the antebellum plantations of Georgia.

January 15: 

hornswoggle \HAWRN-swog-uhl\, verb:

to swindle, cheat, hoodwink, or hoax.

January 16: 

echt \ekht\, adjective:

real; authentic; genuine.

January 17: 

misology \mi-SOL-uh-jee, mahy-\, noun:

distrust or hatred of reason or reasoning.

January 18: 

litigious \li-TIJ-uhs\, adjective:

1. inclined to dispute or disagree; argumentative.
2. of or pertaining to litigation.
3. excessively or readily inclined to litigate: a litigious person.

January 19: 

bosky \BOS-kee\, adjective:

1. covered with bushes, shrubs, and small trees; woody.
2. shady.

January 20: 

perspicuous \per-SPIK-yoo-uhs\, adjective:

1. clearly expressed or presented; lucid.
2. perspicacious.

January 21: 

williwaw \WIL-ee-waw\, noun:

a violent squall that blows in near-polar latitudes, as in the Strait of Magellan, Alaska, and the Aleutian Islands.

January 22: 

idem \AHY-dem, ID-em\, pronoun:

the same as previously given or mentioned.

January 23: 

aphesis \AF-uh-sis\, noun:

Historical Linguistics. the disappearance or loss of an unstressed initial vowel or syllable, as in the formation of the word slant from aslant.

January 24: 

banal \buh-NAL, -NAHL, BEYN-l\, adjective:

devoid of freshness or originality; hackneyed; trite: a banal and sophomoric treatment of courage on the frontier.

January 25: 

pettifogging \PET-ee-fog-ing, -faw-ging\, adjective:

1. insignificant; petty: pettifogging details.
2. dishonest or unethical in insignificant matters; meanly petty.

January 26: 

boîte \bwaht; Fr. bwat\, noun:

a nightclub; cabaret.

January 27: 

squib \skwib\, noun:

1. a short and witty or sarcastic saying or writing.
2. Journalism. a short news story, often used as a filler.

verb:
1. to write squibs.
2. to shoot a squib.

January 28: 

riposte \ri-POHST\, noun:

1. a quick, sharp return in speech or action; counterstroke: a brilliant riposte to an insult.
2. Fencing. a quick thrust given after parrying a lunge.

verb:
1. to make a riposte.
2. to reply or retaliate.

January 29: 

ugsome \UHG-suhm\, adjective:

Scot. and North England. horrid; loathsome.

January 30: 

sessile \SES-il, -ahyl\, adjective:

1. Zoology. permanently attached; not freely moving.
2. Botany. attached by the base, or without any distinct projecting support, as a leaf issuing directly from the stem.

January 31: 

boffin \BOF-in\, noun:

a scientist or technical expert.

*All of these words were copied directly from the dictionary.com daily emails

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2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi! (1 week away!)

Russian Olympic Sochi 2014 Torch Relay Starts On Red Square

I LOVE the Olympics.

I’ve been looking forward to the Winter Olympics in Sochi since the Vancouver Olympics in 2010 were over. To borrow my own words from the 2012 Olympics in London, this is why I’m so excited for the games: ‘I love the Olympics because of the tradition, the competitiveness, the pride for one’s country, the pomp and circumstance of the opening ceremony, the camaraderie of all of the athletes who have come together and support one another no matter where they are from, the opportunity to learn about other cultures and to see athletes from other countries and learn about their stories, and because athletes can represent their country according to their ability- no matter their start in life.’

These are the reasons why I’m excited for the games- no matter the political or social concerns flying around. (Although I do hope there are no safety incidences, yikes, those threats are disconcerning).

You can check out the blogs documenting my excitement over the 2012 London Summer Olympics here, here, here, here, and finally here.

Sochi_Village_Wide

I’d never even heard of Sochi, Russia prior to the Olympics, so it was interesting to discover what it has to offer. It claims to be the longest city in Europe, at a total of 90 miles- and is one of the few places in Russia that has a subtropical climate, warm to hot summers and mild winters. It’s nestled along the shores of the Black Sea and is near the Caucasus Mountains (which is where I assume the skiing and such will take place). Besides the Winter Olympics, they will also be hosting the Paralympic Winter Games, the Russian Formula 1 Grand Prix from 2014 until at least 2020, and is one of the host cities for the 2018 FIFA World Cup. Very impressive, and it looks like a great place to live.

For this Olympics, these are a few of my favorite things:

USA Alpine Ski Team, 20 members highlighted by Bode Miller, Ted Ligety, Julia Mancuso, and Mikaela Shiffrin.

USA Alpine Ski Team, 20 members highlighted by Bode Miller, Ted Ligety, Julia Mancuso, and Mikaela Shiffrin.

Watching the Bobsleigh competition- and seeing track star Lolo Jones compete!

Watching the Bobsleigh competition- and seeing track star Lolo Jones compete!

Watching the Biathlon is always fun. What stamina!

Watching the Biathlon is always fun. What stamina!

Curling is actually really cool!

Curling is actually really cool!

The Women's Figure Skating Team- Polina Edmunds, Gracie Gold, Mirai Nagasu, and Ashley Wagner

The Women’s Figure Skating Team- Polina Edmunds, Gracie Gold, Mirai Nagasu, and Ashley Wagner

Speed Skating!

Speed Skating!

Snowboarding! Highlighting our team, Chas Guldemond (men's slopestyle), Kelly Clark (women's halfpipe), Shaun White (men's halfpipe and slopestyle), and Jaime Anderson (women's slopestyle)

Snowboarding! Highlighting our team, Chas Guldemond (men’s slopestyle), Kelly Clark (women’s halfpipe), Shaun White (men’s halfpipe and slopestyle), and Jaime Anderson (women’s slopestyle)

2014 U.S. Olympic Team Fun Facts – all from http://www.teamusa.org

  • Thirty-eight states are represented, including 20 athletes hailing from California, 19 from both Colorado and Minnesota, and 18 from New York.

  • The oldest and youngest Olympians on the 2014 U.S. Olympic Team – women’s curler Ann Swishelm, 45, and freestyle skier Maggie Voisin, 15 – are separated by 30 years, while the average age is 26.

  • Men’s ice hockey forward Blake Wheeler is the tallest member of the 2014 U.S. Olympic Team at 6 feet, 5 inches, and standing 5 feet tall, figure skater Marissa Castelli and short track speedskater Jessica Smith are the shortest members of Team USA.
  • Team USA features one set of twins in women’s ice hockey players Jocelyne and Monique Lamoureux. Other team siblings include cross-country skiers Sadie and Erik Bjornsen, curlers Erika and Craig Brown, Nordic combined athletes Bryan and Taylor Fletcher, snowboarders Arielle and Taylor Gold, ice hockey players Amanda and Phil Kessel, and figure skaters Maia and Alex Shibutani.
  • Twenty-two members of Team USA have children; there are 19 fathers and three mothers.

 I can’t wait for the games to start! Go USA!! 🙂

Just Laugh – Motivational Monday!

Welcome to Motivational Monday! A safe space to lay it all out on the table- no one is perfect, and every one needs a boost now and again. What time is better than on Monday, that sunny little bright spot of the week? Pull up a chair, keep an open mind, and let’s start this week right!

“A day without laughter is a day wasted” – Charlie Chaplin

Take some time today to laugh!

Fact: When you laugh or smile, it triggers a part of your brain that actually makes you happy. Fact: People who laugh a lot are healthier than those who do not. Laughing can reduce stress, is a natural pain killer, improves breathing, helps you loose weight, reduces heart disease, and gives good sleep. No matter what is stressing you at the moment, make some time to take care of yourself. You’ll be more motivated to get things done if you aren’t in a bad mood.  There is not reason not to laugh!

What can we focus on this week? Don’t get caught up in the stress of the day to day. Take time to enjoy what you’re doing, and just laugh!

January Recipe Test with Anna!

After two years of two recipes per month we decided we to take it easy, so this year for my manifesto, Anna and are are holding just one recipe test a month back and forth at our apartments.

This month at Anna’s we made the Very Vanilla Bundt cake and it was so tasty and moist- the perfect bundt cake. It’s one of the most moist cakes I have ever had- and is super versatile also. You could add your own flavors to make a whole new delicious cake. It was a perfect snack whilst watching the second episode of Downton Abbey. 🙂 It was even better the next day for leftovers. I couldn’t possibly finish my half all on my own, so I took most of it to work and it was a hit!

Recipe (You can check out the website Anna found it at here):

Very Vanilla Bundt Cake

Yield: 12-16 Servings

Ingredients

  • 1 French Vanilla Cake Mix (I used Betty Crocker)
  • 1 small (approximately 3.4oz) box french vanilla pudding mix
  • 1 cup sour cream (I used light & only had 3/4 cup & it was still incredibly moist)
  • 4 large eggs
  • 1 cup water
  • 3/4 cup vegetable oil (I had canola oil, so that’s what I used)
  • 1 cup white chocolate or vanilla morsels

Instructions

  1. Pre-heat oven to 350* F. Grease & flour a 12-cup bundt pan well.   Set aside.
  2. Combine everything but the morsels in a large bowl. Beat for 2 minutes at medium speed. Fold in vanilla chips & pour into the prepared bundt pan.
  3. Bake for 38-43 minutes or according to the time frame on the box of cake mix. Cake is done when it springs back after being touched. Allow to cool for 20 minutes before turning out onto a plate.         Slice & serve.

Helping Others- Motivational Monday!

mlk2010

Today, on Martin Luther King, Jr. Day, we can all stop and honor his memory, and take some time to do a little good in this world.

“An Individual has not started living fully until they can rise above the narrow confines of individualistic concerns to the broader concerns of humanity. Every person must decide at some point, whether they will walk in light of creative altruism or in the darkness of destructive selfishness. This is the judgment: ‘Life’s most persistent and urgent question is, what are you doing for others?'”
Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., “Conquering Self-Centeredness” Speech
Montgomery, Alabama, August 11, 1957

What can you do for someone else this week?

Get started – Motivational Monday!

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Welcome to Motivational Monday! A safe space to lay it all out on the table- no one is perfect, and every one needs a boost now and again. What time is better than on Monday, that sunny little bright spot of the week? Pull up a chair, keep an open mind, and let’s start this week right!

If you wait for perfect conditions, you’ll never get anything done. We can apply this to anything in life- not just fitness goals as the picture above suggests, but goals at work and goals in our personal life as well. Waiting for certain timing or unrealistic circumstances to occur will only hinder your ability to move forward. We have to keep at something for it to be successful, and putting it off will (in most circumstances) only hurt in the long run.

I recently came across an article about the top 25 things that ‘dying people’ say they regret. While not a scientific study at all, it’s an interesting look at things we all should take more seriously – or not too seriously at all. Some things on the list include traveling, learning another language, seeing your favorite musicians, not being afraid to do things, making fitness a priority, and realizing how beautiful you are. Also included are things like appreciating the moment, finishing what you start, spending time with loved ones, and being grateful. You can check out the entire article here.  

Some people spend their entire lives, or parts of their lives stagnant. Building up dreams, and not starting anything. We are all guilty of this at one point or another. As the wise Professor Dumbledore from the Harry Potter book series once said, “It does not do to dwell on dreams and forget to live.”

So what can we focus on this week? Getting started on that thing we’ve been dreaming about so we don’t regret it. It’s NEVER to late to start.

Attitude of Gratitude – Motivational Monday!

attitude

Welcome to Motivational Monday! A safe space to lay it all out on the table- no one is perfect, and every one needs a boost now and again. What time is better than on Monday, that sunny little bright spot of the week? Pull up a chair, keep an open mind, and let’s start this week right!

Every once in a while we all need a swift kick in the pants to get us back in line. I’m talking about our attitude – whether we get down on ourselves, or we’re big headed about things we can’t take credit for, or we’re just acting like a big sour puss. Don’t say it doesn’t apply to you, it happens to everyone.

I recently watched a Joyce Meyer show, and boy she put me back in my place. I’m about to get a little spiritual here- if that freaks you out, stick around, maybe you’ll find the water’s warm! She said this:

You can’t be pitiful and powerful. 

You can be both pitiful and powerful, but not at the same time. Which would you want to choose? Our attitude is the key, it is powerful in constructing how we live our lives, interact with others, and the generosity that will follow. How often do we complain? ALL THE TIME. We pray for things, and are in the ‘waiting period’ (which we will always be in- for something or other) – and then oftentimes when we get that something, we complain about it. Guilty as charged. I found myself complaining that I complain during the show. Oh dear. We have to focus on what can happen with our lives, not the things that have already happened. What do they say about spilled milk? Don’t cry. Bonus- clean it up. What would change in our lives if we could have just a little mental attitude adjustment? Amazing and incredible things would happen.

So what can we focus on this week (and for forever?) An attitude of gratitude.