Tuesday, January 31, 2012

A Letter On Conquering By luluLindsay

Dear adults of the world,

I generally think of myself as an outgoing and independent person.  Growing up, my dad would tell me that he was so proud of me for pursuing new activities on my own and not waiting for a friend to do it with me.  Those words have stuck with me and have even been that final "push" to try something new when I wanted to back out.  Why is it that we get more self-conscious as we get older?

My friend Leah loves all things entertainment, and she recently told me that she would have liked to take dance lessons when she was younger, but she's too nervous to start now.  "But whyyyyyy?!  It's so fun!"  That's easy for me to say when I grew up dancing.  What I didn't realize was I was sabotaging myself with a different activity.

Since my first yoga experience back in September, I've done very thorough research of nearby studios, their classes, and their pricing.  I've also hunted down a handful of free and donation-based classes.  One of these wonderful FREE weekly classes is hosted at lululemon athletica, or as I called it "Rich Girl Athletica".  It was the battle of "How could I pass up a free class?" vs. "You're going to stick out like a sore thumb."  (For the record, my wallet would shrivel up and die if I bought lululemon gear; however, that is no reflection of my desire to buy everything in the store.)  I actually told my friend Cory that I was too nervous to go.  "I'd feel like the new kid going to the pretty, popular girls' sleepover."  As a lululemon yogi in a different state, she gave me the same "you should go" speech I gave Leah.  Fast forward to last Thursday.  I sent Cory this text message: "I might be going to my first popular girl... I mean, lululemon yoga class on Saturday.  I just might."  With the same philosophy as this blog, once it's written, there's no going back!

I did it!  I went to lululemon yoga on Saturday, and it was a really good class.  Sure, everyone else appeared to be "regulars", and they all came with at least one friend, but I still had a good, challenging practice.  SO WORTH IT.  Why did I waste all those weekends finding reasons to go to a different place (and pay) or not work-out that day?  No more of that!

Conquer whatever it is you want to do, and free yourself of useless adult inhibitions.  And like my wise pops says, don't wait for a friend to do it with you.  Get your conquer on, y'all!  (And Leah, take a dance class if you want to!)

Signing off,

P.S. Patrons of lululemon, I'm sorry I prejudged you.  Can we be friends?

Monday, January 30, 2012

Houston, We {Don't} Have A Problem!

We have lift off!  Trial By Sapphire is official, and I am so excited to finally be an official blogger... for public eyes!  I'm looking forward to putting Pinterest project ideas and veg recipes to good use and sharing them with you.  And sharing personal stories like the first time I used a fire extinguisher.  Oh, this is going to be loads of fun!

Thank you for following me to my humble beginnings.  As my readership grows, I have some fun things I want to do including a giveaway.  I've set a small goal of 100 readers as my first milestone for a giveaway.  I hope you'll keep up with me and spread the word!  Let's get to that giveaway, y'all!

And please feel free to send me a message if you have any requests for posts.  I'm also hoping to link up with some fellow bloggers who might be interested in writing a guest post.  We'll see!

Thanks again, and welcome to Trial By Sapphire!  (Eek!)

Friday, January 27, 2012

Relaunch on Monday!

Guess what?!  I finally have a new name for my blog which means it's time to revamp and relaunch!  YEAH!  The site will be down this weekend for maintenance, and I will be sure to share the new web address with those who requested it in time for Monday!

I hope you guys have a terrific weekend while I slave away on my laptop for my first major DIY project -- sprucing up my blog!

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Well, Pardon Me!

No, I didn't toot... or burp.  I've just been absent, and I apologize!  I really thought this blog relaunch would be less time-consuming.  And of all things, I'm just stuck on the name.  I know!  "It really shouldn't be this hard, Lin."  I know, I know.  I'm working on it.  New name and web address to come soon.

In other news, do you know what I've learned?  Automatic sliding doors hate me.  Rather, I walk faster than the average person, and the doors don't open fast enough for my little approaching body.  I blame this on my mom (who I've reminded many times that "This isn't a family outing if the family doesn't stay together") and my gorgeous 6'3" husband.  But really, I walk fast unless I consciously tell myself to slow down or I'm ridiculously tired.  So you can imagine my plight with automatic sliding doors.  It usually results in one of the following ways:

  1. Miscalculating the space as I try to squeeze through and catching my shoulder on the door. (Thus, looking like a fool. ) 
  2. Coming to a sudden halt to wait for the door. (Again, lookin' like a fool.)
  3. ... *Drum roll, please*... Coming to a halt, proceeding, and walking into the door that still hasn't opened.  (What's ten levels above "Fool"?  Furthermore, I could open and close that door faster than it's advertised "automatic" abilities.  What the Hell, man?)
There's nothing sexier than a woman in a suit walking into an automatic door.  The sad part?  Everyone in Hubbell & Hudson was too busy to notice and get a good laugh out of my misfortune.  Well, I hope some security person manning the surveillance room had a hearty guffaw.  I mean, that kind of performance just shouldn't go to waste!  

Has this happened to anyone else?  (That's a rhetorical question... unless your answer is "yes.")

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Top 10 Famous Vegans

In November 2011, LA Weekly printed a an article called -- You guessed it from the title, didn't you? -- "Top 10 Famous Vegans".  It interested me, and I thought it might interest you too!  My personal favorites are #4 (I read The Kind Life blog daily) and #9 (I record every episode).

10. Former president Bill Clinton
9. Ellen Degeneres
8. Alanis Morissette
7. Steve-O of "Jackass"
6. Ozzy Osbourne
5. Joaquin Phoenix
4. Alicia Silverstone
3. Russell Simmons
2. Mike Tyson
1. Thom Yorke of Radiohead

For a little bit more about each of those listed, you can find the article HERE.

Friday, January 20, 2012


I'm moving!  Well, I'm not... but my blog is!

For the last month or so, I've thought about starting another blog in addition to this personal, private one.  I read so many blogs daily.  I've learned that the blogosphere really is a community, and it's hard to participate if one does not have a public blog.  It's like reading Facebook profiles without being able to comment, post, or "Like". And really, what fun is that?

Ultimately, I've decided to revamp "Being Mrs. K" and start using it as a public blog.  It will still be a lifestyle blog/journal, so I hope you'll continue to be a reader.  With that said, I'll be changing things around here:

Design (which I've already started fiddling with)

Possibly the title

Definitely the web address

Did you see that last one?  I'll definitely be changing the web address!

If you would like to follow me to my new blog home, please reach me by e-mail, text, call, comment on this post, or messenger pigeon.  I'll share the new web address with you as soon as I get it.  This change may happen as early as next week.

Cheers to my growing blog baby!

No Doubt About It


Any questions?

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Michelle & Marilyn

Have you seen My Week With Marilyn?  Whether or not you admire Ms. Monroe, one can't deny that Michelle Williams played a very stunning Marilyn all the way down to the flashy eyes, breathy voice, and body wiggle.  For this reason, I think you should see it.  She won the 2012 Golden Globe for Best Actress in a Musical or Comedy for her portrayal -- the same award that Marilyn Monroe won 52 years ago.

The movie is about Colin Clark, a 23-year-old who lands his first job on the production of The Prince and the Showgirl (1957) starring Sir Laurence Olivier and Ms. Monroe, as everyone refers to her.  In one week's time, he observes her, befriends her, naively falls for her, and has his heart broken.  She is attracted to his kindness and innocence, and clings to the possibility that someone loves her.  At this point in her life, she is 30 years old and in her third marriage (to playwright Arthur Miller).  As many past biographies recount, Marilyn was an insecure woman despite her international fame.

Initially, I thought:
  1. How did Michelle do that?
  2. The script wasn't great, but she was.
  3. They just had to give it a Hollywood ending, didn't they?
  4. Without any mention of her orphanhood, her behavior might be interpreted as high maintenance and selfish.

Now that I've had more time to think about the film, I think:
  1. In interviews and her Golden Globe acceptance speech, she says that she spent six months preparing and even read bedtime stories to her daughter in her Marilyn voice.
  2. Same opinion.
  3. It wouldn't be a Hollywood film otherwise, now would it?
  4. I've accepted that there her past was never highlighted, because I realized that this movie wasn't meant to be about her.  It's about Colin Clark.  However he viewed her and experienced her is the movie's truth, so I concede.  And in all honesty, she was high maintenance.  Her drug and alcohol abuse made her unreliable.  And addictions inevitably include selfishness.  I'm not sure why I was subconsciously trying to defend her earlier.

I watched Marilyn Monroe movies growing up, and a poster of her neighbored another of James Dean in my bedroom.  When I was 16, my parents got me a collection of her films.  Some Like It Hot and Gentlemen Prefer Blondes were my favorite.  They were two of my favorite rainy day movies.  And I may have watched them on repeat for a brief period of time.  I loved the era, costume design, and setting -- granted the sexism is to be expected.  I liked that she was considered sexy without being a skinny, aggressive man-eater.  She was too much of an unstable emotional wreck to idolize, but I was fascinated by her, and I watched closely.  Needless to say, her mannerisms, laugh, and sing-song tone are etched in my mind.  Michelle nailed all of them.  Michelle is Marilyn.

If you are considering this movie, go to the movie theater, hunker down with some popcorn, and watch it.  Also, if you're a Michelle fan, read her interview in the February 2012 GQ issue HERE.  It's so good and heart-wrenching.

Source: Just Jared

And lastly...

Confession: I was obsessed with the WB show "Dawson's Creek".  My favorite character was Pacey (Joshua Jackson... who is still hot and on the path to marry Diane Kruger *girl crush*), but I cried when Jen (Michelle) died in the series finale.

Oh, Dawson's Creek.  Such teen drama with an uncharacteristically stellar vocabulary.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

The Gift of Music

Today I am thankful for: being able to listen to Pandora at work.

Pandora is a free online music station that you can customize with your artist, band, and style preferences.  Office work in silence can be draining, and music energizes the room.  Unfortunately, at my last job, the company firewalled (not a true verb, but it is in IT speak) the website, because they didn't want it to disrupt work or present any opportunities to offend another employee.  Yet they kept YouTube... ?  But that's beside the point.

I love having my own office and being able to listen to music in it (albeit at very low volume, because I leave my door open).  Music is music, people, and I've got it!

The end.

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Fur Baby: Meet Boone

We adopted!  We didn't want Amelie to get lonely, and we wanted to get a young cat, so she could establish herself as the dominant cat.  And with so many animals up for adoption, we felt very strongly about giving another cat a great life with us.  I'd like to introduce to you...

5.5 months old
Incredibly adventurous
Loves to tackle (and cuddle with) Amelie
Eats... a lot

We changed his name to Boone (after Daniel Boone), because he is both an explorer and a hunter.  There is nothing cuter than watching this little guy walk around with a toy (his prey) in his tiny mouth.  And his little mew?  To die for!  He hasn't ruined a single piece of furniture, and he wiggled his way in Amelie's heart in a matter of days.  If you're a cat parent, you know that this is rare.  I call them "Mom-elie" and "Baby Booner".  It's a match made in Heaven.  Here's the proof.

Monday, January 16, 2012

Proof That I'm Making Progress, Y'all!

Today I'm thankful that I can successfully make it through back-to-back Pilates Ball and Vinyasa Flow yoga classes without falling over or passing out.  This is what progress looks like, baby!  I'm a sweaty monster after those 135 minutes, and it's amazing.

Favorite words: "Shaking is fear leaving the body."
-- Aline Houston (aka the best Vinyasa Flow instructor ever) at Your Body Center

I've never seen fear leave 20 bodies at once.  It's pretty crazy. 

Also, I can do the Side Crow pose...

Click to go to source: fitsugar

... and then she had me try the Scissor Legs Side Crow.

Click to go to source: fitsugar

That's when I lost my balance.  But I'm working on it!

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Product Review: Earth's Berries Soap Nuts

Earth's Berries Soap Nuts
Available online at Ethical Ocean

If you have no idea what soap nuts are, I'm excited to tell you!  First, some background.

Since moving to Houston, we've worked hard to clean up our lifestyle and eliminate indoor toxins.  I've become fascinated with it.  My internet time formally used for Facebook and Hulu is spent looking up vegan lifestyle blogs, eco-friendly cleaning, and home remedies.  Here are a few ways we kick toxins to the curb.

  • We brush our teeth with baking soda and fluoride-free toothpaste.
  • We use a solution of white vinegar, water, and pure castile soap to clean the kitchen and bathroom.
  • We're in the process of switching to wheat cat litter.  (Thanks for the recommendation, Dixie!)
  • I started using non-aluminum deodorant and the Diva Cup a few months ago.  (Gents, ignore this bullet point.  Ladies, now you think I'm a hippie, don't you?)
  • We do all of our laundry in cold water.
  • We do our laundry with soap nuts.  (Which brings us to my review!)

I completely understand if this sounds a little too "tree hugger" for you, but hear me out.

They look like nuts, but they're berries.  Their high concentration of foaming saponin makes them a potent, all-natural cleaning agent.  Earth's Berries boasts promises of cleaning better than the household-name brands while being better for the environment and people.  I read so many reviews about soap nuts, and I was happy to see so many converts who urged everyone to give it a try.  So last month, I bought a bag.

It is so simple.  Put four nuts in the mini cotton bag, soak them in hot water for two minutes (because we do our laundry in cold water), and throw it in the machine with the laundry.  Remove the bag when the clothes are transferred to the dryer (or hung to dry).  That's it!  And it gets better.  That same bag of nuts can be used  for three or four more loads.  This means that I paid $35 for 300 loads of laundry.  And I'm happy to report that I don't have to compromise on quality.  Our clothes, towels, and bedding are as clean as using Tide.  Even my sweaty Houston work-out clothes.  In fact, they're cleaner considering it's chemical-free.

I'll leave it at that.  If you are intrigued and want to know more, just visit the Ethical Ocean product page HERE.  And of course, if you use it, let me know what you think!

Friday, January 6, 2012

Why I Love This Blog

On December 26, 2010, I thought of a Christmas 2011 gift for Scott.  (Talk about planning!)  I decided to keep a journal for a year, and I wrote the first entry that night.  It went something like this:

"We're headed into what may be a trying year.  Not necessarily bad but trying.  For the first time in our 4+-year relationship, we're discussing decisions that need to be made out of necessity and not desire.  And just as we always have, we're bound to grow together.  The possibilities are endless which is exciting.  It stirs some anxiety in my currently somewhat heavy heart, but it will be interesting to see where we are in life when I give this to you in a year!"

I knew that 2011 was going to be a big year for us.  I didn't know why or how, but I knew.  Earlier that month, we experienced a lay-off, and we were still trying to figure out our new one-income status.  There were already other plans in the works for the next year, but a lay-off is unsettling, nonetheless.  We quickly learned that the lay-off was a gift in disguise.  Case in point: We could finally get married now that we weren't working in the same department for the same company.  (New HR rule.  Lame.)

I never did finish that journal.  I didn't make it past April.  With working full-time, planning a wedding in four months, and gearing up to move and work in a different state, I probably averaged five hours of sleep per night.  I'll admit that it was a gift more intended for us than him.  I was really looking forward to opening it on Christmas Day and having stories that were probably forgotten from the past year.  A good idea but hard to keep up in a year like ours.

But now I have this blog!  It's convenient, because I can blog on my phone anywhere, anytime.  It's a great way to keep you guys updated, and I often get e-mails and texts referring to something I recently posted.  It will be so fun to read through the past year come August.  So much can happen in a year!  2011 proved that for the Kudias.

Today I am thankful for this blog and that others, if only a small handful, read it.  And there's been a noticeable decrease in hearing "What's new?"  Now it's more like "Good job using the fire extinguisher!"

Thursday, January 5, 2012

In Come The Masses To Rain On My Work-Out

Last night I learned my lesson in showing up to Pilates five minutes before class on the heels of the should-have-seen-it-coming "get fit" New Year's resolution proclaimed by many.  The usual size of 4-5 students tripled -- thus, filling the small studio room.  I'm happy that so many people have resolved to put exercise as a top priority, but did so many of them have to choose that class?    I miss the spacious classes of autumn when people don't have holiday pounds to shed.  Disappointed, I drove home.

Silver lining: Scott made lasagna for dinner, and he was pulling it out of the oven when I got home!

My muscles were sad, but my tummy was happy.  Sometimes you can't win 'em all.  This is probably a long shot, but do any of you have any DVD recommendations that I should buy to work-out at home?  I need a back-up plan in case a class ever fills up again... or if I'm too lazy to drive somewhere.  ;-)  Leave your recommendations in the comments, please!

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Tolly: Littlest Kudia, King of the House

Yes, I'm still here.  And in my absence, I missed a holiday.  HAPPY NEW YEAR!  I hope that you enjoyed a night full of love and reflection or chaos and debauchery -- whichever suits you.  :-)

The Kudias could use a clean slate.  I haven't been able to bring myself to blog over the last week, because my heart has felt too heavy to muster up the energy to tell you that Tolly passed away last Thursday, 12/29/2011.  We were so unprepared, and we've experienced heartbreak, anger, and loneliness in equal measure.  He was the king of the house, our little man, our "Dude-y," Mr. TBS's shadow.   We've spent the last week laying low, avoiding the phone, cozying up with Amelie, watching movies, and enjoying quiet meals together.  And like a true team, we've taken turns being strong for one another.

Summer shared this with us: "I read a beautiful article recently.  It was all about taking care of our pets in their senior years.  We let pets into our lives knowing that we will, inevitably, have to experience their passing.  Yet, we do it anyways because we realize and appreciate all of the good things they bring to us."

This is so true.  It made me think about
my recent review of Homer's Odyssey.  Like Cooper, I can't even begin to count the ways that Tolly changed our lives and what we learned from him.  I'm a better pet parent, wife, friend, and person.  I am so thankful that three years ago, Mr. TBS brought him into our family.  It is, without a doubt, one of the best things he has done for us.  We celebrate Tolly's life, and our hearts are infinitely grateful to him and for him.

Tolly, you taught me so much.  You were the perfect first-adopted "little one."  
I miss your groggy eyes as you came out of sleep.  
I miss your somersaults when you played with Scott.  
I miss you sitting on my jewelry box in the morning as I do my make-up.  
I miss your middle-of-the-night cuddling.  
I miss the smell of your fur.  
I miss your "old man" sighs as you fell into a deep sleep.
I miss seeing you sleeping on Scott's lap.
I miss your independent spirit.
I miss feeling you lean into every kiss on the head and scratch on the neck.
I miss your confident meow.
I love you!  THANK YOU!

"A meow massages the heart."
-- Stuart McMillan