Category Archives: Listed

The inevitable 2014 goal post


Happy new Year! Feliz año nuevo! (Don’t forget the tilde on the n!)

NYE 2013 was just as low-key as NYE 2012. Sean and I joined up with siblings, cousins and some friends for dinner and games at Adrian and Alexis’ new-ish apartment. Xavi crashed way before midnight.

For 2014, I want to do more:

Running. I miss it. I have a jogging stroller and mainly open weekend mornings so I should be able to get out there. It should also help me lose a little bit of weight without being restrictive about my diet — which I’ll have to do eventually if I want to get back to pre-pregnancy weight.

Reading. Inspired by Punk Rock Mom, I’m taking up an A-Z challenge to read at least one book by an author from every letter of the alphabet.

Writing. Let’s see if I can knock out two blog posts a week about more than just baby/new mom life. I know that’s not interesting to some people. And I do have thoughts about culture, politics, education, etc.

Assessing 2012


I couldn’t sleep a few nights ago and started thinking about the health and fitness goals I set for 2012. I didn’t even remember them, nor did I ever explicitly post them on the blog. They were part of the monthly goal posts I wrote early in the year. I found my goals in my notes and wrote self-assessments in brackets. I used the same format from the citizenship section of my elementary school report cards (outstanding, satisfactory, needs improvement, and unsatisfactory).

– 5 servings of fruits/vegetables per day [Needs improvement.]
– More water, limit Diet Coke habit [Needs improvement, satisfactory for the Diet Coke aspect.]
– Eat out <2 per week (ideally 0) [Satisfactory.]

– Strength 2xs a week [Outstanding for 2/3 of the year, unsatisfactory after August.]
– Yoga – use Groupon [Unsatisfactory.]
– Cross training 1 time per week [Satisfactory for 2/3 of the year.]
– Wear a bikini and be comfortable doing so [Unsatisfactory, not attempted.]

– PR in all race distances [Satisfactory; I only ran three official races and PR’ed in the marathon and the 18-mile distance.]
– Minimum of 4 runs per week [Satisfactory until April thanks to marathon training; outstanding during 5-week run streak]
– Reach weekly and monthly mileage records [Outstanding, I think. I know I did break my weekly mileage record, but am not 100% sure about the monthly record.]

Weight loss
– Get back to goal weight (ideal <130)
– Fit in to khaki pants and H&M dresses again
– Return to WW, follow plan
[Unsatisfactory on all of these. I’m at the highest weight I’ve been since ’09 and just removed the pants and dresses from my closet.]

Propose & collect data [Big fat unsatisfactory]

I didn’t do so great. Maybe a C grade? At least I know what I need to work on — along with other stuff.

target sucker

I did do better on other non health & fitness goals. I planned a wedding with Sean and our families without going crazy (or making them crazy). I also got my Target spending habit under control. I’d get an A- or satisfactory in those areas.

Twelve firsts for 2012

Chilling in 100+ degree weather

Got married to Sean surrounded by 250+ family members and close friends. I did wear shoes most of the time. [Posts]

The only runner that matters to me

Ran a sub-4 marathon… The rest of the year was unimpressive on running, but I did get in a 38-day run streak and started regularly strength training. [Post]

Aerial station at La Cienega/Jefferson

Rode the newly opened Expo Line from Culver City to downtown LA. It’s nice to have the option to take the train downtown to concerts, games, etc.

Backlight con Rosario

Finally got around to that Blogotitlán reunion with people I’ve “known” since 2004. I met Elena and Gustavo (plus wife and adorable daughter) and saw others I hadn’t seen in a while (David, HP, Nathan (and Rosario), and Adriana. Oh yeah, we ran the Carlsbad half marathon or marathon in the middle of it. [Post]


Let go of a longtime goal and finally did what I should’ve done years ago: quit grad school. [Post]


Visited Joshua Tree with Sean for our anniversary. [Post]

The family (sans tía Eva)

Celebrated Mamá Toni’s 90th birthday with the family. [Post]

Second Line through the French Quarter

Attended a wedding in New Orleans, complete with a second line through the French Quarter. Only regret is that my first trip to NOLA was less than 48 hours. [Post]

After the Simpsons table read

Attended a table-read for The Simpsons. [Post]

Actually got in to the track competition during the Olympics thanks to Leo Manzano. It also helps that Sean is Jamaican and insisted that we watch all the sprints where the Jamaican men and women dominated… which was a lot of races. [Post]

Diver waves to kids in the Pacific exhibit

Took on my first post-grad school full-time job… in the same office. The new job included getting paid to go to Disneyland and the Aquarium of the Pacific. [Post.


Spent Christmas with my in-laws in New York.

February goals & January goals check-in


Light weight

I’ll leave off all the ones relating to all the other things I need to be doing as they just feel like checklists.

Health & fitness

1. Stick to my LA Marathon training plan and get through the highest mileage weeks and long runs of marathon training without injury. Plan includes strength and cross training.

2. Figure out a race pace and get comfortable with it.

3. Run the Hansen Dam Friendship Run 18-miler.

4. Change up my strength and core routine. Try another Nike Training App workout. I did — er, attempted — a core workout and it kicked my ass.

5. Track (with points) for at least a week and one weigh-in. I got through about 4 days of tracking my points and then abandoned it after the BBQ for my grandparents’ anniversary.

6. Continue planning out dinners for weekday nights at the beginning of the week. We just started doing this and it really helped save time and streamline shopping.


Fruit salad
Health & fitness

1. Continue attending yoga classes: Nope. Yoga went by the wayside as I got in more running.

2. Rehab IT band: Sorta. It feels much better, but I still feel some discomfort during long runs. It’s not as bad as it was in December. I need to be better about icing and rolling it with the Stick, even if I don’t feel like I need it. I’ve been increasing my mileage recently and have felt good.

3. Get my 5 servings of fruits and veggies daily: Check. Eating a big salad for lunch almost daily helps with this.

4. Attend one Weight Watcher’s meeting: Check. I started tracking and counting points for food last week. Based on my sex, age, height, weight, and activity level, I was allotted 26 measly points. I haven’t stayed within that limit at all in the last 7 days. If I did, I’d feel quite hungry. In the past, I still lost weight even using the weekly flexibility points (49/week) and activity points I earned.

5. Stick to Marc’s training plan: Check, sorta. Sometimes, I don’t do the scheduled cross training and run instead. However, I’ve stuck to the straining and look forward to it. I’ve been able to up the weights for the dumbbells I’m using.

6. Negative split at Carlsbad half marathon: Check, just barely.


1. Update guest list: Check. It’s a little worrisome that our guest list is larger than our venue cap.

2. Gather addresses: Check. The mailing list is 85% complete. We still need addresses for Sean’s family and his parents’ friends.

3. Make planning timeline, consult planning checklists: Half check. I got the latter done and downloaded a few wedding planning apps.

4. Schedule Catholic couples retreat: Not yet.

5. Begin wedding gown search: Online, yes. I got suggestions from LA/Southern California area bridal boutiques from friends and family. I’ll be visiting a few shops later this week with my mom and sister.

6. Complete save-the-dates: Check. We got them on Monday.

7. Make wedding website: Check. It’s still in progress.

8. Book honeymoon: Nope. We still have a lot of work to do researching the various options.

I originally delegated the mariachi search to my dad. I know he’s picky with mariachis and he has good taste. He had a group he liked, but they were booked. After some online searching, my dad went to a party and heard a mariachi he really enjoyed. They also had two women in the group, which I liked because I love to hear women sing rancheras and boleros. The group is available and affordable. We just need to make it official.

We also signed up for a couple of gift registries. We haven’t done much with them yet.


1. Bring back This Day in Chicano History posts: Check. I have a list I made a couple years ago with several dates. I need more women-related dates on it.

January goals & December check-in

I have mixed feelings on doing these monthly goal posts. It’s trendy, but it’s helped me to mix things up with my normal routine and I am getting things done. Thus, I’m still on the monthly goal bandwagon.


Sage advice

Health & fitness

1. Continue attending yoga classes
2. Rehab IT band
3. Get my 5 servings of fruits and veggies daily. No burgers or fries!
4. Attend one Weight Watcher’s meeting
5. Stick to Marc’s training plan (includes cross training and strength)
6. Negative split at Carlsbad half marathon


1. Update guest list (already begun)
2. Gather addresses (already begun)
3. Make planning timeline, consult planning checklists
4. Schedule Catholic couples retreat
5. Begin wedding gown search
6. Complete save-the-dates
7. Make wedding website (in progress)
8. Book honeymoon


1. Bring back This Day in Chicano History posts


Health & fitness
1. Use my Groupon for yoga classes at a local studio: Check. I took one beginner’s class and am looking forward to going back. I liked the teacher.

2. Run around the UCLA perimeter twice: Nay. I avoided a hard hill workout before the Holiday Half (12/11). Afterward I was recovering and dealing with some mild IT issues. From what I read, hills make it worse.

3. Run the Holiday Half Marathon and PR: Check!!!

4. Strength training twice a week: Half check. I started this in the last two weeks of the month.

5. Do a couple of runs with a friend or group: Nay.

6. Stick to my training plan: Nay. I fell off after the half, but I did start incorporating the cross training and strength he’s included.

7. Decide on the LA Marathon: Check. I’m in unofficially.


Cindy & Sean Sunset Silhouette

1. Engagement photo session: Check. Loved the results and the process of getting all dolled up was fun too. [Photo above by Michael Fletcher.]

2. Estimates/hiring 2 other big ticket vendors: Nay.

The blog
1. Post 3 times week: Check.

Get the most of our Disneyland passes: Check. We went after the half marathon. It was quite crowded, but we saw/did some more new stuff and finally checked out the fireworks show.

Eleven for ’11

Overall, 2011 was a pretty good year. Below, eleven memorable moments in chronological order.

First photo of 2011

Kissing Sean at midnight on New Years Eve. That almost didn’t happen thanks to a fierce winter snowstorm that delayed his move from NY to LA a few days. [post]

Happy running in the home stretch

Feeling Grandpa and Grandmas’ spirits giving me strength in the final miles of the LA Marathon. Something made me surge at mile 25. I say it was my grandparents. Crossing the finish line was cool too. [post]

The attention getting Tweet

Getting a text message telling me to turn around and then seeing Sean down on his knee, holding a ring in a box. I said yes. There were tears and mocos (boogers). [post]

St. John Vianney in Hacienda Heights

Learning from Adrian via a midnight text message that St John Vianney was on fire and likely unsalvageable. It didn’t hit me until the next morning when I saw the news and photos of the gutted church. [post]

All the Bixi bikes were rented

Running and biking along Lake Ontario during my trip to Toronto. Other memorable runs during my travels: a long run through Santa Barbara; a short post-LB Marathon run along the Hudson in New York; running along the nature preserve in Napa. [post]

Nevada Falls and Liberty Cap

Reaching the point on our hike when Nevada Falls finally came in to view. Yosemite was great overall. Even though our trip was cut short thanks to the crazy storm it was still pretty amazing. [post]

Brea Community Center - Community Hall

Setting a date, signing contracts and paying deposits to reserve the church and reception hall. After that point, getting married started to feel official. [post]

Friends since freshman year at UCLA

Celebrating my 31st birthday with lots of friends and family. Not only did they show up, a lot of people also put in lots of time and effort to make it special for me. [post]

Empire State of Minding it

Seeing Sean and his friends sing Jay Z’s “Empire State of Mind” at the top of their lungs at a bar during our only trip back to New York this year. I know he misses NY. I do too. [post]

Disneyland with familia

Spending a day at Disneyland with my parents, grandparents, aunt, uncle and cousins. It was neat to fill up an It’s A Small World boat with my family and see Papá Chepe and Mamá Toni enjoy Disneyland for the first time in 35+ years. [post]

Cindy showing off her newest medal

Kicking ass during the Holiday Half Marathon and earning a 5 minute PR. I ran a few PRs this year and for the most part met my running goals. However, this one instilled some confidence and felt like a come back from my awful LB Marathon experience. [post]

Guide to holiday blogging

Are you in a blogging rut? Need some ideas for blog posts?

Never fear, here’s 10 timely topics. Don’t worry, these haven’t been done to death by bloggers, magazine writers and local TV news.

christmas eve goodies

1. How not to gain weight through the holidays and manage eating at holiday parties. This includes writing about low-fat and low-calorie versions of traditional holiday dishes.

Regalos (gifts) for everyone

2. Gift guides for everyone, including the neighbor’s dog.

A whole lot of cousins

3. How to survive spending time with your family over the holidays and holiday dinners

Continue reading

December goals & November follow-up

VR naps while we sing and the rest of the famila plays lotería

I did better on my goals for last month (see below), but can still improve and this month gives me a good chance to do so. I know a lot of people dread December fitness-wise. I don’t. I’m also as chill as VR up there. I look forward to the family Christmas parties, holiday work parties and spending more time with friends as they have time off.

Since I work at a public university that needs to find clever ways to cut budgets, I get a forced 7 day vacation during the winter campus closure. As a result of the state’s penny pinching (er, fiscal mismanagement), I’ll have more time for Christmas related stuff as well as writing, getting in my workouts, try new classes, etc. It’s a good time for to mix up my usual routine.


Health & fitness
1. Use my Groupon for yoga classes at a local studio
2. Run around the UCLA perimeter twice. I’ve done the 3+ mile route once a couple years ago. It’s a great hill workout.
3. Run the Holiday Half Marathon and PR (<1:58). I’m not sure I have it in me, but after the Turkey Trot I have more confidence in my ability to sustain a sub 9 pace.
4. Strength training, twice a week. I need to do this.
5. Do a couple of runs with a friend or group. Trail running with Lori in the San Gabriel Mountains perhaps?
6. Stick to my training plan. I’m paying a coach to tell me what I should do. I should listen to him.
7. Decide on the LA Marathon. Yes? No? I can’t delay much longer.

The November goals we didn’t meet carry over.
1. Engagement photo session
2. Estimates/hiring 2 other big ticket vendors (mariachi? florist?)

The blog
1. Post 3 times week. I’ll have the time.

Get the most of our Disneyland passes. We upgraded about a month before they expire. Might as well make our money worth it.


Health & fitness

1. Stick to my half marathon training plan – Check. I skipped 2 or 3 runs and was off 10 miles from the total my online coach had for me.

2. Run the Turkey Trot 10K and set a PR – Check.

3. Strength training twice a week – Fail. I’m much more likely to work out if I can do things at home. I’m lazy about getting to the gym even though it’s so close and on one of my running routes. I need one more piece of equipment to do most of my strength exercises my coach has for me at home.

Overprice UCLA Champion sports bra

4. Run home from work once a week – Half check. At rush hour, I can make the 5 mile trip from my office to my apartment on foot faster than on the bus or even doing my usual car/bus method. (Drive 1.5 miles, bus the rest. I do this to save money on parking. A subsidized bus pass is much more affordable than parking on campus.) This time of year, running home is a good way to deal with earlier sunsets and I’m guaranteed not to flake on my planned workout. It’s also mainly downhill, so that helps. Trouble is, it takes some preparation. I ran home twice; the third week I forgot to pack a sports bra. I stopped by the student store and considered buying one, but nixed that plan when I saw they were selling Champion bras for $34. Um, that same bra — minus the UCLA logo — costs $15 a Target. The commute home that day was really bad and took over an hour.

5. Go back to Weight Watchers for a meeting – Check. I achieved Lifetime status last spring after getting to my goal weight and maintaining it for 6 weeks. Unfortunately, maintenance isn’t as easy as losing. I quickly gained back ~5 lbs and was ineligible to attend free meetings since I wasn’t within 2 lbs of my goal weight. So, I didn’t go back because I didn’t want to pay for something I wasn’t getting much out of anymore. Earlier this year I found out the WW plan had changed and I was curious about it. I attended a meeting and learned all about the new Points Plus plan. It’s different enough that there’s a bit of a learning curve for me. I tried tracking for a week and fell off very fast as I had to calculate/look up everything rather than go from memory. I do want to get back to goal weight, so when I decide to make that a priority, I’ll go back to tracking and keeping within my points. It worked once before!

6. Focus on eating more fruits and vegetables – Fail. I didn’t track this, but I’m pretty sure I wasn’t getting my 5 recommended servings per day.

1. Get save-the-date and invite ideas to our graphic designers – Yes. We’ve got some feedback and even a first look of some graphics we’ll use.

2. Decide a concept/location for our engagement photo shoot in December – Half check. We can’t really delay on this much longer.

3. Figure out estimates for 2 more big items on our budget – Fail. This was sort of an off month in the wedding planning area. At least we got some props for our photo booth thanks to post Halloween sales.

The Blog
1. Do something for 11/7 (blog anniversary) – Check, but I didn’t post my other reflections on 10 years of blogging. It’s tough to pick out favorites when you have 10 years’ worth of posts.

November goals and October check-in

Lori won a turkey for placing first in her age division

Health & fitness
1. Stick to my marathon training plan
2. Run the Turkey Trot 10K and set a PR – Last year my sister won a turkey for placing first in her age group. I placed 2nd in my group. It was a tiny race thanks to the rain.
3. Strength training twice a week
4. Run home from work once a week
5. Go back to Weight Watchers for a meeting
6. Focus on eating more fruits and vegetables (5 a day)

1. Get save-the-date and invite ideas to our graphic designers
2. Decide a concept/location for our engagement photo shoot in December
3. Figure out estimates for 2 more big items on our budget

The Blog
1. Do something for the 11/7

I don’t have anything big for work this month. My goals for my own education remain the same.


Health & fitness
1. Run a personal best at the Long Beach Marathon – Nope. I added 30 minutes on to my LA Marathon time.
2. Begin half marathon training – Check. I took two weeks off after LB, but got back in to it at the end of the month.
3. Start strength training – Nope.
4. Eat out less – So-so. The weeks in LA might have been okay, but the NY trip probably messed me up.

Pumpkin bread

5. Try more new recipes – Check. I made a delicious pumpkin bread I found on Jamelle’s blog. This is the first time I’ve tried baking some kind of bread. My mom and sister, the actual bakers in the family, approved. I

That dissertation thing
… Let’s not talk about this.

Job1 & Job2
1. Write my section of the report for one of our external funders – check
2. Finish the qualitative institutional reports – check
3. Start remembering the names of the new students – needs improvement

1. Update our budget, make a plan to save enough and pay any outstanding deposits – Check, if you extend the deadline to November 2nd. The only thing we got done in October was the last item.
2. Schedule our engagement shoot with Michael, our photographer – same as #1
3. Ask our bridesmaids and groomsmen to be part of our wedding party – check! (except for one, that’s Sean’s job)
4. Ask X to be my maid of honor – Check. I asked Lori, my sister, to by maid of honor. She said yes, but she seems a little nervous about the responsibilities.
5. Meet Sean’s extended family at our informal Long Island engagement party – Xheck, the party was fun. I could use some more rum punch.
6. Work with our graphic designers on our save-the-dates and invites – Still need to do. At least we have a timeline to work with.

The blog
1. Post two DIY costumes per week – Half check. I posted 7 costumes, but some were re-done. I do give myself some credit for putting up some new costumes like La Dama and the Mexican Calendar Girl.

1. Get my Halloween costume together – Check. This was easier after I switched plans and all I had to do was get yellow shorts and make my antennae.

The Overkill Jar

2. Make an overkill jar for all the words and phrases Sean and I say way too much – Check. The money will go to the wedding fund.

Diez cosas

I got tagged by Julie and Shelby, two fellow bloggers for a blog award. This means I have to — well, I don’t have to, but I kinda like these memes — post 10 fun facts about myself.

1. I’m a dumbass. After doing a short easy test run a few days before the Long Beach Marathon, I iced my hamstring. I wasn’t thinking and affixed the ice pack against my bare skin. I left it there for 20 minutes. The result? An embarrassing and itchy ice pack burn. Thankfully, it wasn’t a serious burn and went away in a few days.

2. I subscribe to 34 podcasts. Some of those are super short or song-of-the day types, but several are 45 minutes to more than a hour long. I always have a podcast to listen to at work or for a run.

3. Whenever I feel pretty bummed about running, I remind myself that I’ve only been doing this for a little over 2 years. If you would have told me in early 2009 that I’d be able to run a half marathon in <2 hours (okay, barely) or run a marathon, I’d have laughed at you.

4. I watched Toy Story 3 for the third (fourth?) time on Saturday. I cried again. I blame hormones and the fact that I’m a wuss.

5. Aside from persistent gray hairs and paying bills, the biggest difference I notice about getting older is that I now regularly get motion sickness on roller coasters and spinning rides at amusement parks. I always loved the rides that made me super dizzy, now they make me want to vomit or give me headaches. Also, I used to be able to read in a car without any problem. I occasionally get queasy when I read in a car or on the bus, especially if there are a lot of turns or jerking motions.

6. I probably look a little too long when I see a mixed (black+another race) baby or kid when out and about. I blame my biological clock and the fact that I look forward to being the mother to Mexican+Jamaican babies.

7. The food I most often crave is plain old frijoles de la olla, basically a freshly made pot of pinto beans. I love beans and am so happy when I can steal some from my mom’s house.

8. Since high school my mom has predicted that I wouldn’t marry a Mexican man. She was right.

9. I get that a lot of beauty practices are painful, uncomfortable, and time consuming. I avoid most of those, but will deal with things like eyebrow and upper lip waxing because I like the results. However, I won’t suffer for fashion. I tried on a sequined dress last week just for fun. I think I looked okay in the dress, but was very uncomfortable. I left the shop feeling itchy and with red marks on my skin.

10. I take my right to vote seriously and like going to the voting booth. I’m not the most informed person when it comes to politics. I mean, I can talk about the stupid things Herman Cain and Michele Bachmann said during last night’s debate. However, I do nerdy things like write letters to my representatives on issues I feel strongly about (see: the DREAM Act) and volunteer for political campaigns when possible.

I’m supposed to tag someone, but I’ll skip that part.