"When I get sad, I just stop being sad and be awesome instead. True story." - How I Met Your Mother


Monday, May 31, 2010

I may have just spent our entire life savings on shoes...


ok, well I did not really spend our entire life savings on shoes.

More like if you summed up the amount of money I've spent on shoes my entire life and compared it to this one Zappos shopping cart I just bought, this would probably be more. (ok that is a bit of an exaggeration, but you get the point.)

Basically, I placed every shoe I liked on the website into my shopping cart and hit checkout.

Can someone please explain to me why gorgeous shoes have to be so flipping expensive?

Now before you start judging and calling my mom to tell her I've gone crazy with a Carrie Bradshaw complex and need immediate psychiatric treatment; let me explain...

  • I have no self control

  • my feet were depressed and needed a pick-me-up

  • money for food? Ha! I can live on shoes and love alone!

  • Work was really boring today

  • So pretty, pretty, prettyyyyyy

  • Sex & the City 2 fever compelled me to do it
Still think I am certifiably crazy???  Don't worry, the above list is a JOKE. (cough, sort of)

Truth be told, while I did spend a decent chunk of change on the lovilies shown above; sadly, I will only be keeping 2 pairs to call as my own. That is if everything works out as planned.  The first four are potential wedding shoes.  I will hopefully be selecting one of these based on fit, comfort, and how it looks with the dress.  Of course, the pair I love the most (based on appearance) costs the most. Figures.  The last pair is a set of heels that has been elluding me for an entire year....I've tried on at least 50 pairs of nude pumps to-date and still have not found a winner (I am a bit picky).  I am hoping these will finally end my quest.  The reason I mass ordered online is because Zappos does not ship to Qatar and I will soon be home in NJ for a week so this is my only chance.

Hopefully I can keep the credit card bill a secret until then.

UPDATE: Future hubs saw the e-mail receipt for my purchases (damn, forgot about that) and the following Microsoft Communicator IM conversation ensued:

Hubs, Future [5:21 PM]: hey
Hubs, Future  [5:21 PM]: shoe shopper
KP [5:23 PM]: um, hey babe...whats up?
Hubs, Future [5:24 PM]: you picking me up?
Hubs, Future [5:24 PM]: or did you have to sell the car to pay for those shoes?


Sunday, May 30, 2010

Little Known Fact

Little known fact: I have an extremely small head.

Fortunately, I don't think I am one of those people whose body looks disproportionate to their headsize (now if i shaved my head, it might be a different story). But this tidbit has been fodder for an endless amount of jokes from my future husband (what.a.guy) since the moment he discovered I was "cranially challenged". 

For example:

Last weekend after my cycling accident I had a CT scan of my head taken to make sure everything was OK.  This produced two X-ray type films; one of just my skull and the other of my brain.  He found it hilarious to show me (and our friends who came over for lunch later in the day) the one of my "empty" skull and say, "see, I knew your (her) head was too small to fit a brain! This explains so much!" and so on.  Brutal.  Not the teasing (because it is typically in a playful, loving way), but the quality of the jokes, can we say lame?! (sorry babe, love you!)

Anyway, having a small head has always been a bit of a challenge for me when it comes to buying hats, headbands, and/or any other sort of headwear.  For hats I typically have to wear the adjustable kind, strapped to the smallest setting or an extra small fitted size.  One-size-fits-all? Um, LIES. Not this little head. 

Typically, I am not bothered or embarrassed by the fact my head is so small...although yesterday was an exception.  Due to my accident I had to replace my helmet.  For those of you that don't know, I live in the Middle East and it is not always easy to find things you want/need.  Especially when it comes to sports and fitness type supplies, food, and equipment (with the exception of soccer gear).  There is a surprisingly decent sized cycling/mtb community here; however, there is only one real store in the entire country that supplies to our needs.  While they do carry some essentials; it is a small store with pretty limited offerings and brand varieties. 

So anyway, we went down there to find me an interim replacement helmet.  I am going to buy a light-weight racing helmet when I go back to the states in July but I need one in the mean time so I can still ride.  They only had a couple to choose from and the salesman starts off by handing me a medium sized helmet; I try to tell him that a medium will be too big but he insists it is adjustable and will fit.  I try it on and crank it down to the smallest setting and low and behold, the helmet is not even close to fitting.  "Oh, I see," says the salesman.  He tells me he needs to go into the back and see if they have any smalls available.  After a few minutes of searching he finds one.  I try it on, crank it down, and it still does not fit.  He hands me a "universal size" helmet which can adjust to a smaller circumference than the small and still, no luck.  At this point the future hubs starts laughing and hands me this:

The Trek "Little Dipper" helmet, designed for small children.  After a bit of coercing, I put it on just to humor him...I was able to get it on my head, but it did not fit properly because it was not deep enough (thank god). But, I was still able to get my head into it, which was enough to cause the future hubs to go into hysterics.  Even the salesman was laughing at me as he said, "Ok, I see what you need. This will work," and hands me the following:

It is a Trek Youth "Vapor" helmet and of course it fit, PERFECTLY.  The future hubs starts telling the salesman, "Great, we will take it!"  Um, future hubs, Seriously?! Are you kidding?! I am sorry but, really?!?!  I would rather not ride my bike then get caught wearing this thing...it screams 12 year old girl! Honestly, while having a small head is one thing, I don't think the whole world needs to know that I wear helmets designed for pre-pubescent children.  Especially when I am trying to intimidate the competition during a race. Yeah, not happening.  I plead desperately to the salesman, "Do you have this in any other color?? PLEASE, ANYTHING ELSE."  He looks over the helmets on display and says he needs to go check in the back.  The future hubs shoots me the looks that says, "Are you really going to be such a fashion diva? It is just a helmet." Um, YES and I am quite sure you wouldn't be caught dead wearing something like that while out training with the Terminator and Mr. German National because they would never let you hear the end of it.

After a few minutes the salesman comes out from the back with this (the very last one):

Ok, now this is something me and my tiny head can live with.

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Latest Obsession: MyPlate at Livestrong.com

Being that I am a cyclist, one might think that I knew about this ages ago since Lance Armstrong and his Livestrong mantra is like the most mainstream cycle thing there is. Truth be told I only "discovered" the amazingness of this website last week by total accident.

Livestrong.com acts as a complete epicenter for healthy living. It is designed for everyone; from the seasoned athlete trying to get the competitive edge to the average jane/joe looking to lose a few.  I have been playing around on this site for a few days now and there are so many awesome features; I just really feel the compelled to share (also, of course I find this site during the week I am not allowed to do any physical activity...but I guess it is a good thing I found it now).

The majority of the features on this website are FREE (don't you love that word?!); however, if you want some more seriously advanced fitness & health tracking features you will have to shell out a whopping $45/year.  (How much does Weight Watchers cost?? I am thinking this is a steal)  The first step is to figure out your daily calorie goal.  This goal is based on your basic stats (age, height, weight, gender, etc), your activity level, and your health goal (maintain weight, lose weight at x lbs per week, etc.).  The next step is to start tracking.

Ok, so I like adventure sports and outdoor activities, but honestly I am not a health nut.  Anyone who knows me (or reads my blog) knows that I LOVE food, especially in the form of cupcakes.  I would say that in my quest for a healthy figure and fitness level eating well is my BIGGEST challenge.  Especially with a fiance like mine who is extremely athletic, skinny as a rail, and can eat like one of those Asian competitive food eaters without gaining a pound. Constantly being around someone who eats that much and does not have to worry about his food choices can be extremely difficult; temptation is a wicked beast.  So for me, I find the myplate food tracker to be amazing.  First, it has practically everything you can think of stored in there with a full nutritional breakdown.  I am a huge nerd and fully enjoy looking things up that I plan to eat or have eaten. 

The myplate is an extremely easy way to keep a food journal and it does all sorts of cool analysis for you.  All you have to do is enter in your food ...how easy is that?!

It will point out to you areas in your diet where you need to improve and areas where you are doing well.  As you can see, I have been consuming too much sugar and too little fiber.  No wonder I am always hungry!  The tracker is great because it keeps records of foods you eat often so you can select them more easily, but you can also create meals (groups of things you may eat on a daily basis like cereal and milk) and add recipes of things you cook at home.
While you track you food intake, you can also track your fitness and calorie deficit from normal everyday tasks.  Did you know desk work burns 119 cal/hr?? Go figure.  The last feature (probably my favorite) is the My Loops function.  Here you can map out running, walking, and cycling routes (linked through google maps) and based on your weight, distance, & speed it can calculate the calories expended on that route.  Again, I am a huge dork and had the best time mapping out two of my most common biking routes on it...you can also find other user's loops in your area (there are none in Doha unfortunately, except mine now).

There are a ton of more features to this site, like articles about healthy weight loss, fun exercises to do at home, etc. but I'm sure I've already bored you to death so I am just going to let you go and explore on your own.  Don't blame me if you get addicted though!

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Tasting the Pavement

People in the Middle East seem to be very confused by my hobbies.  Yesterday's events only further proved this theory.

I got into an accident while cycling at 45 kilometers per hour (~28 mph).  I was reaching down for my water bottle and hit a raised reflector in the road (I didn't see it coming). Since I only had one hand on my handlebars I was unable to correct my balance and I went flying directly into the highway...where the locals tend to drive like maniacs at speeds greater than 100 mph.  Luckily, there were no cars immediately in the location that I landed but traffic was oncoming quickly.

Now in the US (at least where I am from) if a driver came up to a cyclist crashed on the road they would stop their car, get out and try to help that person or at least make sure that they are OK.  This is not the case in the Middle East.  Instead the driver slows down and starts flashing their lights and honking at you for getting in their way.  Then after they have made you aware of your "error", instead of stopping to help they will just drive around you while continuing to honk out their displeasure. Awesome.

As I skid out into the highway I was screaming in horror and pain.  My entire right arm, shoulder, hip and lower leg became covered in "road rash" aka a wicked gravel filled abrasion.  I hit my head, causing my helmet to dent and crack.  I was dizzy from the impact and unable to react quickly enough to get myself out of the road and dangers way.  Thankfully the other cyclists I was with (one of them being the Construction Manager of my project) were able to react quickly for me.  They were able to move me and my bike to the side of the road and help me.  I have to note that even after I was out of the road, still lying on the ground, cars continued to drive by and honk at us.  Seriously, I am almost POSITIVE that at least SOMEONE driving by in the US would stop and help if they saw someone in distress on the side of the road without a vehicle parked nearby.  Obviously a bunch of people on bikes are not going to be able to get a person to a hospital if needed. Am I right?

Anyway, I was able to get to the hospital to get cleaned up and checked out.  All is well.  Except again, Middle Eastern people don't understand my hobbies.  Every doctor & nurse I saw kept asking me if I got into my accident while swimming.  What?!  How on earth would I manage to get that scraped up while swimming??!!  My only guess is they were extremely confused by all the spandex I was wearing since all the Islamic women here wear like full spandex outfits that cover their entire bodies when they go swimming.  But again, I was wearing spandex shorts cut well above my knees and a short sleeved spandex shirt...and also carrying a cracked helmet.  I would think the helmet would be a dead give away.  Wrong.  Then when I told them I got into the accident while cycling, they responded: "Motorcycle?".  Well, at least that is a bit closer.  None of them seemed to believe that a person could ride a bike at 45 km/hr either.  Guess they have never heard of Lance Armstrong.

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

ok seriously i have a problem

I was eating cake yet AGAIN in my dreams last night. 
I dreamt that I was tasting wedding cake and settled on the following flavors (each in their own tier):
  • Double Chocolate with Chocolate Mousse
  • Apple Pie Cake
  • Tiramasu
  • Funfetti with brownie bites
And I could totally taste every bite I took.  Seriously.  How ridiculous (slash kind of delicious) does that cake sound?  Who dreams with that kind of crazy detail?? ABOUT CAKE??


(darn it and now I want a slice of cake!)

Monday, May 17, 2010

the view from here

Doha's city center as seen from The Pearl in West Bay

This is The Pearl:

It is a man-made island/peninsula that will eventually be home to a myriad of luxury homes, villas, apartments, 5-star hotels, retail stores & restaurants.  Some of the first phases of development have been completed and several high end stores (such as Dolce, Prada, Hermes), showrooms (Ferrari, Bugatti) and upscale restaurants (Gordon Ramsay's Maze, Le Relais de l'Entrecote, Bice Ristorante) are already open. Although there is a ton of construction still going on (and yet to go), it is already shapping up to be quite an amazing place.  The Pearl is one of my favorite places in Qatar and not because of the shopping (although I am sure the fiance' thinks it is the reason I am always asking to go there!).  It has great views of the city center, giant yatch's, and the Arabian Gulf.  Another great feature is that there are tons of walkways along the water and relatively few people.  It has a really relaxing atmosphere because it is not over-crowded like the other shopping/dinning areas in the city.  There are plenty of places to sit, relax, and enjoy an evening or afternoon coffee...and of course, plenty of ridiculously amazing/expensive clothes to drool over.

I think my living in Qatar would be much improved if I were residing here:

Don't you? (*sigh* wishful thinking)

Sunday, May 16, 2010


You are hanging out at a boat party up on the top deck and suddenly you think to yourself; "boy, it's hot; I'd sure like to go for a swim!"

So what do you do??




oh yeah, did I forget to mention this was a PIRATE boat party??


Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Brave or Stupid?


(PS - Do you see me in the background snapping a picture??  I will post that one later once I get it off my camera...it's pretty awesome)

Sunday, May 9, 2010

B is for Bad @ss and for BOY

Hello blog world! I would like to introduce you to my *first* ever nephew:


I absolutely L-O-V-E the name Cayden.  It reminds me of the place my brother & his wife first met - the Cayman Islands.  I don't think this has anything to do with why they choose this name, but I like it.  His middle name; Robert, is my dad's name. Good old Bob-O!

They just found out they were having a boy a few days ago and I could not be more thrilled for them.  If this little bundle of joy turned out to be a girl they were planning on naming her Evelyn Pilar.  Evelyn is the name of my sister-in-law's good friend who passed away and Pilar is her Mother's family name.  I like that this name has sentimental value.

Baby names are hard in my opinion.  Not that I am anywhere close to the point in my life when I am ready for a child (sorry mom!),  but I have thought about baby names in an anticodotal fashion. As in, "oh, that is a cool name"...or "oh god, whoever named their child that is deranged!".  If I actually had to come up with a list of names I liked or would consider for my future unborns the paper would be completely blank.  Now, if I had to come up with ridiculous names I would name my unborns as a joke...I could do that in a heartbeat:

Girl Names
1. Trashawanda - seriously I met a girl with this name once and I tried VERY hard not to laugh everytime I saw her
2. Anita Lai - self explanatory
3. Bertha - just screams "fat girl" to me
4. Gertrude - your child is now an 80 year old grandma
5. Krystal Oceania - I named one of my Barbie's this as a child, I have issues...ahaha
6. Apple, Blossom, Rainbow, Pearl - (or anything that is an actual object)
7. Neveah - (or anything this actually something else backwards)

Boy Names
1. Harry - I had a friend with this name, his last name was unfortunately Wiener (dead serious)
2. Ralph - to vomit or manparts...take your pick
3. Scooter, Skipper, Skipp - this is supposed to be a baby, not a boat
4. Thor - your child now must grow up to be on American Gladiators...(I think I may seriously have to name a future dog this though, preferably a smaller one..haha)
5. Seymour - your child is now an old pervy grandpa or vice principal
6. Sancho or Sanchez - as in dirty sanchez..haha
7. Prince - (put princess up for girls names as well oh, and precious for that matter..VOMIT)

Anyone else have any brillantly ridiculous names??  I could use some good ones for my future pets...(I highly agree with giving animals ridiculous names or wait, does that border on animal cruelty??)

scenes from my version of a typical weekend in Qatar...

Friday, May 7, 2010

i think i may have a problem...

Last night I was apparently chewing in my sleep; very loudly.
To the point that the fiance' tried waking me up to stop me from chewing.
Now I don't remember any of this because I was sleeping, but here is what happened:

Fiance':  Baby, hey baby. Wake up.
KP: (chew chew chew, chomp chomp chomp) mmmm
Fiance': Babe, come on, you are chewing, wake up.
KP: (chew, chew) I know - I was eating CAKE.
Fiance': what? um, was it good?
KP: I don't know.

Seriously, you know you have a problem when you dream about eating cake to the point that you are physically chewing in your sleep. I am not sure what is more funny, the fact that I was eating cake in my dreams or that I did not know if it was good or not.  Either way, I think this may be a sign that I have a problem and might have to join cake-eaters anonymous.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Why I am completely changing my ENTIRE Wedding

Over the past 24 hours, I have had a total change of heart.  It all happened when my Dad (who is totally rad btw) sent me the below e-mail that totally rocked my world....

So wait, you guys didn't know I have a "thing" for pirates?!
Ok, BFF/Maid-of-Honor, you totally knew.  (and you are down for this right??)

So instead of having an outdoor garden, simple-chic wedding in New Jersey, I am now going to have an


This is going to be the most FANTABULOUS wedding EVVERRRRR!!!  I am practically having a seisure of pure joy over this. And these are the wonderful people that are going to make it all happen:

Here are all the AMAZING details:
Here is what me and my future captian of my heart and life (aka fiance) have to look forward to:

Seriously, I am pretty sure you all are entirely jealous of how super rad, fantastically, awesome-riffic my new wedding is going to be.  I am sorry, but your glamorous ballroom, black-tie wedding just does not compare.  I mean come on, Pirates!  Arghhhhh!!!

So you guys are all totally coming right??

PS- Pirate or wench costume required.

Sunday, May 2, 2010

Lime is apparently not the only fruit that goes with salt...

Sometimes during lunch at work I go to a jobsite canteen to eat with a few of my coworkers.  The canteen closest to my office (while it does have killer chocolate muffins) does not typically serve the best food so we usually bring our own food and eat it there.  (side note: there is this rad canteen out in the labor camp for management (additional side note: yes, you read that correctly, labor camp aka where the cheap labor lives...obviously we are not in America anymore!) that serves seriously awesome, authentic, made-to-order, super spicy Malaysian food for dirt cheap that we like to go to, but it is a bit of a hike so we don't go often.)  Anyway, when people of different cultures bring food for lunch it can lend to be quite an interesting experience. 

I am constantly seeing and trying things I have never been exposed to before.   Funnily enough, while I have not seen or tried many of the "common" Middle Eastern, Indian, or Far Eastern cuisine; most people I work with from these countries know all about "common" American foods, fruits, & vegetables.  Also at the grocery store; I have never seen nor heard of half of the fruits and vegetables and would have no clue how to cook or what to do with them either.  So it is pretty cool for me when my non-western coworkers are kind enough to give me things to try.  Actually, the Lebanese guys I sit with at lunch usually force their food on me...I will get up to get a napkin or something and magically some random food will be left where I am sitting and then they will all chant, "Yalla, yalla! Try it, try it!" ("yalla, yalla" literally means "quickly, quickly" but the expression roughly translates to "let's get it done!" or "let's go!") 

Today at lunch was no exception. One of my Lebanese coworkers had brought in a bunch of fruit that was grown at his home in Lebanon.  Of course it was all passed down to me to sample, learn the names of, and consequently butcher their language as I try to repeat it.  (Teaching me Arabic words is another source of entertainment for them, as my pronunciations are absolutely brutal and they find it hilarious.)

Here is what I tried...apparently all of these fruits are really nice with a cold Heineken and some salt.  Or so I am told.


Janerek most resembles an under-ripe plum in my opinion.  It is soft enough to bite, but more crisp than a ripe plum and also more tart.  You are supposed to have it with a little bit of salt on each bite. (and "Kimberly, it is so perfect with a beer")

This is actually an almond, but with its outer shell and before it hits full maturity.  You are supposed to eat the full thing, dipped in salt, and again chased with a beer. (Got to love these Lebanese guys.  Can you tell we are living in a dry country...everything tastes better with a beer! ha.)

Lastly, Akedeneh
This was my favorite of the three.  The english word for this fruit is Loquat, they are originally from Japan and there are farms that grow them in California. Although I personally have never seen or heard of them before.  It was sweet and had a really nice texture sort of similiar to a papaya or mango, but does not taste like either.  This one does not require salt but of course, would be enhanced by a Heineken.

So now I think I am going to have to go home and grab a beer and test their claims... Yalla, yalla!