Archive for September, 2010

2010 NPC Stewart Fitness Bodybuilding Championships

Posted in Uncategorized on September 23, 2010 by chisel247

Competition Weekend!!

Travelin’ to Lexington, SC

The plan was to arrive at the “Host Hotel” in Lexington, SC by late afternoon on Friday, September 17th. Mo would then contact Megan and I to determine the time and place to “Mahoganize” our current caucasian skin.

The Sutter Suite….A.K.A. “Tan Central”

Takin’ Jim’s best interests into consideration, the decision was made to set up the Sutter Suite as “Tan Central”. The layout of my 4th level Penthouse Suite (as that was the top floor ;o) ) was perfect for setting up the Tannin’ Tent because there was a pretty large fourier at the entrance of the room. Plus the light was positioned directly over the center at the top of the tent. Lighting is a critical aspect in ensurin’ that the tan layers are applied evenly. In fact, Jim and Mo brought a halogen lamp along as well. Once we got the tent and spray equipment ready to go, we called Megan to join us. Mo applied a layer on me, then I dried while she applied a layer on Megan. We did this a couple of times so that we each had two good coats and once we were dry enough, we put on our baggy pants and black XL Dream Team T-Shirts to wear down to registration.

Weigh and Pay!

Fortunately, registration was in one of the hotel meeting rooms just down the hall from the hotel lobby. We sauntered into the room, lookin’ more “Tropical” than when we arrived at the hotel, and greeted the registration folks with our paperwork and cash. I was instructed to weigh in next. Well….I didn’t really think about that aspect prior, so I had not put on a bathing suit under my baggy pants and XL t-shirt. The guy weighin’ me in asked if I thought I’d be able to make weight (max of 115 for Light Weight category) in my clothes. I told him I’d weighed in at 111Lbs without clothes and ought to be fine. Otherwise, I’d be standin’ “buck-arss naked” on the scale in front of him to make weight. Thankfully I weighed in at 112Lbs! He said, “Well, looks like it’s gonna be a boring night for me.” ;o)

Tan, Tan, Tan…”Mo” Tan

With registration taken care of, we headed back to “Tan Central” for Mo to apply a couple more layers on Megan and myself. And with that we were officially “Mahoganized”. UNBELIEVABLE!!! Looked GREAT!!

About 8:30pm Megan, Mo and I said our “Good Nights” and they left the Sutter Suite. Mo said she’d plan on arriving at 5:15am the next mornin’ to apply a touch up coating based on how the tan soaked in and how our pajamas (long sleeve shirt and pants) affected it.

Rise N’ Tan

I was a little bit nervous when I shed my robe to put on my pajamas the night before. I had been sittin’ on the sofa, watchin’ TV,  and was leanin’ forward to eat my dinner. When I took of my robe, my abdominal area looked kinda jacked up and the top of my quads where my arms had been resting too. I figured the scheduled mornin’ touch up would blend it in and went to bed – no worries.

Like clock work, knock on the door 5:15am.  Naked as a Jay Bird and ready for touch up tannin’, I realized that the tan had soaked in really well overnight! Even the polka dot areas we noticed the night before, where the skin wasn’t takin’ in the tan – some kind of skin funk that only shows up when you get sun exposure / tan product applied, had also blended evenly! YAY!!

Facial Foundation

Now that our bodies were good to go, the next step was addressin’ the face. It is super critical to blend the face with the body. Otherwise, you’d look freakish! Once again, Megan and I were thankful to have Mo’s expertise at hand – literally. ;o)

Foundations set, Mo left to get herself ready leavin’ Megan and I to apply our own eye make up and get suited up. Megan loves to play make up artist – especially on eyes – so I let her handle my beautification. ;O) Fun Stuff!!

Athletes’ Meeting #1

Showed up at the venue, Lexington High Auditorium, with baggy pants and Dream Team XL t-shirt coverin’ up our Posing Suits. Shortly there after, IFBB Pro – Johnny Stewart – the man behind the competition – greeted the competitors and thanked us f0r competing. Then his assistant gave us instructions regarding pickin’ up our number, goodie bag, and the particulars regarding the locker rooms and designated areas to lift weights to get pumped up and sprayed with cooking oil to get that nice on stage sheen. ;o)

As I went through the process of getting my number, competitor badge, etc., I was asked if I would be interested in competing in the Women’s Master category, in addition to the Women’s Light Weight category, as there was only one woman entered in that category. I figured, why not, I was there and would either place first or second! ;o)

Ladies Locker Room

Megan, LeAnn and I claimed our spots, being the first of the ladies to arrive in the locker room. It was a nice, spacious area that was well suited for the number of lady competitors, whom filtered in shortly after.

All the sudden, Mo and Johnny Stewart’s girlfriend, MJ (also a IFBB Figure Pro), came kinda runnin’ into the locker room. MJ welcomed all of us and noted that several of the ladies were first time competitors. She asked that those more seasoned competitors help to make the experience positive and for us to lend each other a helping hand as needed. It was a nice way to set a positive vibe amongst the competitors. Then, she went on to tell us that we needed to be on guard with our behavior because a certain TV channel was filming one of the lady bodybuilding competitors!!  TV Ya’ll!! Who knows…might end up on a TV episode! ;o)

TV CHANNEL Girl

I asked the girl how she scored being filmed by this certain TV channel. She said she had a friend that worked for, or with, the channel and that they were shooting a documentary in hopes of developing a reality TV show on Women’s Bodybuilding!! VERY COOL!! I found out that she was originally from California, but is now residing in my home town of Hotlanta. We got to talkin’ about other things and of course FOOD came up. ;o) She was curious if I had figured out a good way to cook Cod. I said I hadn’t been eatin’ any Cod, but had some good ideas for other white fish I’d been eatin’, such as Tilapia, Orange Roughy and Mahi Mahi. We had to cut the conversation short because it was time to get “Pumped Up” and “Oiled Down”!!

(NOTE: I have purposely not named the TV Channel with whom this girl was affiliated out of respect for the project, since it is in the works and yet to be completed and made public.)

Pre-Judgin’

My trainer, Jim, had come in right after Mo and MJ, to inform us of the order in which the various competition categories were lined up for Pre-Judging. And he explained how much time he would allow prior to each category going on stage so that we could properly prepare.

Before I knew it he was callin’ Ladies Light Weight competitors to get ready and then we were on stage, front and center before the panel of Judges!!

They called out the mandatory poses, we posed on cue, “relaxed” on cue, executed the next pose on cue, “relaxed” again and repeated that cycle until we had gone through all the required poses. Next, we each performed our individual, 60 seconds pose routine. Then we were told they’d look forward to seein’ us that evenin’. That took all of about 8 minutes!!

13 WEEKS of TRAININ’ for 8 minutes of stage time???!!! Kinda crazy…ya think??

I was even more glad that I had decided to compete in the Masters category just to get more stage time and face time in front of the Judges!

Post Posin’

Megan and I went and got our stuff from the Ladies Locker Room and took it to some empty seats in the back of the auditorium, where we sat and watched the remaining Pre-Judging categories pose. Upon completion of the entire session, we went and spoke to our supporters. Megan’s boyfriend Josh, Daniel and Jaime, all of which are Dream Team teammates of ours, but were not competing in this event and our trainers Jim and Mo. They were all very complimentary of our “first-time” performance. ;o)

We then grabbed our stuff, checked out the freebie stuff in the Expo and then headed back to the hotel to eat and rest.

Mo said she’d call us mid afternoon to decide when to come touch up our tans as needed prior to changing into our “Evening Wear”.

Hurry Up & Wait

I got back to my room, heated up my food and chillaxed for a while – took a little power nap! Before I knew it we were touchin’ up our tans, make-up, suitin’ up and headin’ back to Lexington High Auditorium for the evening showcase.

Athletes’ Meeting #2

Shortly before the evenin’ awards presentation / showcase was due to begin, the athletes were assembled for a second meeting. Once again Johnny Stewart thanked us for competing and then his assistant gave us the run down regarding the category order for the evening’s trophy ceremonies and posing routines. He also requested that as the trophies were presented and winners were announced to maintain sportsman-like conduct and to take up any concerns with him after the show. Finally, he mentioned some up coming competitions, encouraging us to come back for more. Then it was time to head back to the locker rooms, apply last-minute touch-ups, pump-ups, oil downs and wait for Jim to expedite us through the course of the evening’s events. EXCITING!!

Trophy Ceremonies

Women’s Light Weight Bodybuilding & Women’s Masters Bodybuilding

Jim got us ready to head out on stage for the moment we’d all been waitin’ for  – claimin’ our prizes!

First up – Women’s Masters Bodybuilding

No pressure…..Linda and I were following the female guest bodybuilding poser, Monique Jones A.K.A. “BIG SEXY”. We thought Jim would line the two of us up in numerical order, myself, with the lower number, then Linda and that we would perform our 90 second routines in that same order. Well, he reversed it on us and then the MC through in another monkey wrench announcing an unscheduled intermission upon Monique completing her routine. I know Linda was relieved!

Show Time!!

Intermission over, audience back in their seats, the MC got the show back on the road. Linda was introduced and performed her 90 second routine. Meanwhile, the MC was confirming how to pronounce my last name,  I told him”It’s Sutter – “Butter” with an “S”.”

As Linda exited the stage, I entered to get positioned center stage with my back to the audience. Introduction. Music. Action!! (Mo and Jim told me later that I had Rocked the House! The audience had gone WILD! And that Marion Benton, one of the Judges, who never comments on the choreographed routines had said, “She seems like the most awesome person!” Mo said she agreed with him and that I was on her Dream Team! ;O) Later at dinner, Megan’s sister also took a moment to express the positive crowd reaction and how she enjoyed my routine too. I was thrilled and humbled to hear the amazing reactions!)

After completing my routine, Linda and I were re-introduced and headed back center stage for the award presentation. Linda took First Place and I received second!

Second Up – Women’s Light Weight Bodybuilding

The Bikini category followed Women’s Masters Bodybuilding, so while they were receiving their awards Jim was linin’ we Light Weight Bodybuilders up off stage. The MC introduced LeAnn and she performed her 90 second routine. She did great!!

Then the three of us in the Light Weight Category were centered up on stage before the judges and the audience. The MC, announced LeAnn (my Dream Team teammate) had placed FIRST!, Linda second and I was third!  YAY! So excited for LeAnn as this put her in the running for winning the “Women’s Overall”, which she ended up winning as well!!! To say she was THRILLED is the understatement of the new decade!! ;o)

Last Show Segment

The remaining portion of the show consisted of another guest poser performance by Malcolm “House Shaka” Marshall followed by the Men’s Open Bodybuilding categories: Bantam, Light, Middle, Light Heavy, Heavy, and Super Heavy weights. Most of which I watched from side stage.

I say most, because at one point I had to run out front to purchase the professional photographs that had been taken immediately following my Pre-Judging performance and to place my order for the DVD.

Meetin’ In the Ladies Room

I took my final trip to the Ladies Locker Room to gather my stuff and discovered that the only ladies still there were the TV Channel Girl and her two-lady film crew. TV Channel Girl said that she’d like to get my contact information. She had written down “Chef” on a piece of paper, referrin’ to me as a reminder to get my information. ;o)

Once we had exchanged contact info, I took the opportunity to ask what kind of spin they planned to put on this documentary / reality TV show. I was SO glad to hear the word “POSITIVE” roll off their lips! I suggested that they get in touch with my trainer Mo, IFBB Figure Pro, who’d been in the industry for a number of years to gain a positive perspective worth tellin’. We chatted awhile longer and I headed back side stage to see Steve (my other Dream Team teammate – LeAnn’s husband) claim Second Place in his category and the end of the show.

TV Channel Girl and crew were headed out, leaving via side stage. She stopped gave me a hug and said she’d see me at Nationals in Atlanta.

Photo Opts!!

After the show ended, Megan, LeAnn, Steve and I took all kinds of pictures of each other together with our trophies. Then we tracked down Jim, Mo and Johnny to have our pictures taken with them too.

DINNER!!!

Finally, we hit the parkin’ lot and headed toward the restaurant row area. O’Charley’s became our dinner destination. Our “After Party” consisted of Josh, Megan, both of their family members that attended, Jim and Mo and the newest addition to the Dream Team – Figure Girl -Jenny accompanied by her husband Travis. LeAnn, Steve and their crew had decided to go to Applebee’s.

I got a steak (first time I’d be havin’ beef in 13 weeks!) with sweet potato fries, a roll and side salad. Megan chowed down on a BIG ‘ol BURGER and fries!

Megan’s family had brought her a container full of her favorite peanut butter cupcakes, one of which she informed me had my name on it. ;o)

Callin’ It A Night!

Dinner downed, and all of us full as a tick and exhausted, we headed back to the hotel to call it a night. That’s when Megan realized that when she had taken her posin’ suit to the car she had left both the suit and the car keys in the trunk of Josh’s car. OOPS!! ;o/

No big deal……Josh said he’d wait on AAA to take care of it. So, Megan and the cupcakes rode back to the “Sutter Home Suite” with me!

Megan and I chilled out for bit in the “Sutter Suite” and then said our goodnights.

I was so tired, yet still wired so I stayed up watchin’ TV, ate my now chilled peanut butter cupcake and some of the chocolate Mo & Jim had given me in my “Goodie Bag”!!  Around 12:30am, I finally went to sleep!

Bodybuilding Bug Bit!

What an INCREDIBLE experience!!

Mo predicted it would happen and she was 100% accurate – I’ve been bit!

All along I had planned to participate in this competition as a “Trial Run” prior to the Mid Atlantic Classic.

Well…..plans have changed. Instead, I’m goin’ to compete at The Big Shott Classic!

This is a Men and Women’s Bodybuilding competition that is runnin’ in tandem with Jen Hendershott’s All Women’s Weekend Fitness, Figure and Bikini Competition. (Hence the “Shott”)

I’ve got a little over 4 weeks to continue to tighten thangs up!! Whoo! Hoo!

THANK YOU!!!

Thanks for joinin’ me in my 13 week trainin’ journey!!

It’s been a WILD, EXCITING, CRAZY, SUPER FUN ADVENTURE!!!!

I SO APPRECIATE you takin’ time to read my blog postings and for all of your Encouragement and Support along the way!!

Stay Tuned…

I plan to keep adding posts covering: Excellent Bodybuilding Resources for Training Techniques, Sutter Girl “Recipivity”, and Competition Details.

Let me know of any other topics of interest and I’ll throw that info in the mix too!!

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13 Weeks of Trainin’ – The Results

Posted in Uncategorized on September 23, 2010 by chisel247

Weights and Measures

I signed on as a Dream Team member, June 21, 2010 weighing 126 LBs.

I recorded my measurements one week later – June 28, 2010 and again the day prior to the competition, September 17th as follows:

June 28, 2010

Weight: 122 LBs

Chest: 31.375″

Waist: 26.125″

Hips: 36.375″

Mid-Thigh L/R: 20.125″

Flexed Bicep: L 11.9″, R 11.8″

Body Fat %: 21.9%

September 17, 2010

Weight: 111 LBs

Chest: 33.5″ (increase in back not front ;o) )

Waist: 25.75″

Hips: 32.5″

Mid-Thigh L/R: 18.75″

Flexed Bicep L 11.25″, R 11.125″

Body Fat %: 16.9%

The Visual

June 28, 2010

2 Month Mark

Day Before Competition


13 Weeks of Trainin’ Hard and a Fabulous Fuel Plan!!

Havin’ A Blast!!

Posted in Uncategorized on September 17, 2010 by chisel247

Time Flies When You’re Havin’ Fun!

As they say…….and this entire process has been a BLAST!!

Man that was a super FAST 13 Weeks of Trainin’!!  The Competition is TOMORROW Ya’ll!!!!!  :O) WHOO HOO!!!

Week 12

So, in my last posting, I was recappin’ Week 11 during Week 12……still trainin’ hard last week. The only difference was a tweak to the Fuel Plan with a slightly lower Carb intake. And the other significant happening was the LAST Posing Practice session held on Sunday, September 12th.

Week 13

This being the week leading up to the Competition, things changed significantly!

The Fuel Plan had fats added back in Monday through Wednesday. Saturday through Wednesday required training all body parts and performing cardio in the mornings. Thursday, fats were removed, Carbs added and no weight training – only cardio in the morning. Today – REST!

Liquid and Sodium intake were also changed up. Drinking normally Monday through Wednesday and up til 6pm on Thursday but keeping sodium intake very low. After 6pm Thursday very little water. Friday morning until noon, water consumption back to normal, but from then until “Show Time” sipping as necessary.

OH!!! And the biggest difference this week……the application of the BASE TAN!!  LOVE IT!!

AND…..Majorly practicin’ my 60 second and 90 second Posing Routines!!! I

I practiced 0n my own in front of a mirror, then without a mirror. I invited two of my neighbors over on separate occasions for two more runs, and I practiced in one of the small studios at my gym, both on my own and in front of Cindy and then Barb, two of my gym friends. I wanted to make sure I had ALL the moves down and get some input, as Cindy was a dancer in her day. ;o)

Layer Number 1

Wednesday (September 15th) Mo and I had planned to get together so I could take a look at makeup she said I could borrow. I needed African American foundation in order to properly blend my face into the Mahagony level of tan that would soon cover my entire body!

As it turned out, Mo called to see if I could come over earlier that evenin’ so that she could apply Layer Number  1 of my tan. I was too excited!!

I took this opportunity to run through my 90 second choreographed to music posin’ rountine again in front of both she and Jim. They Loved It!! Jaime, a Dream Team teammate, ended up comin’ over for some tannin’ action too. So, I took the opportunity to run through it again in front of her. She too thought it was cool. ;O)

Here We Go!!

I’m TOTALLY PSYCHED, STOKED, to compete!!  My trainers have done an AMAZING job preparin’ me for this event!!

Pics to come……and results should be posted at http://www.stewartfitness.com ;o)

And of course I’ll recap the event from the “Sutter Perspective”

WEEK 11

Posted in Uncategorized on September 12, 2010 by chisel247

Playin’ Catch Up……

Well, I’m runnin’ one week behind schedule in terms of adding info to my blog. So I have lots to share! ;o)

Some adventures from a recent trip to the Big Apple, more on the “Recipivity” scene, and just the latest in regards to preparation for the upcoming competition.

So….here we go!

Change of Scenery

I was fortunate enough to have my travels take me to my favorite place in the U. S. of A. – NEW YORK CITY!!

In fact, all of Week 11 would be spent in this happenin’ town! So, the week prior I was on a mission to determine where I would be pumpin’ iron each morning. I mean three weeks out from the competition I needed to keep my trainin’ on track!

One of my SC trainin’ friends told me to check with our club’s front desk for a list of gyms in NYC that partnered with our SC gym. Apparently, there’s a Membership program which clubs throughout the nation participate to offer Gym Rats workout accommodations while traveling. Needless to say there were a slew of them on the list for Manhattan. ;O)

The Gym Score

The gym that caught my eye, based primarily on proximity to where I’d be staying, was CRUNCH. When I looked them up on the internet there was a link for a “Free Guest Pass” – perfect! So, I clicked the link and submitted the required information to begin the process of gaining my guest pass.

Not five minutes later, I received an email from Jared stating that he was glad to see that I was interested in checkin’ CRUNCH out and asked when I would like to schedule a training session. I wrote Jared back explaining that I was going to be in the city for the entire week, was trainin’ for my first bodybuilding competition, was hoping to acquire a guest pass for the week, and if a trainin’ session was required to obtain the guest pass that early Monday morning would be perfect.

Jared replied stating that CRUNCH typically only offered guest passes to city residents, but in light of my circumstances, he was going to grant me a Free Guest Pass for the entire week, as his way of sayin’ “Good Luck!”!!!! I was SO pleasantly surprised I immediately wrote him back to express my gratitude and asked if he would be at the gym that week so that I could thank him in person. I gave him the link to my blog explaining that I was documenting the whole transition and process or preparing for my first competition. Jared indicated that he too knew something about transition, as he had lost 125 LBS.!!! We scheduled an “in person” meeting for that Wednesday. ;o)

CRUNCH – The Ultimate Gym Experience!!

Monday – As per Jared’s instructions, I brought a copy of our email correspondence, print out of the Guest Pass he provided, and my i.d. to the front desk. I was greeted by Anthony who took all the information and entered me in the gym system. He said I was all set for the week and then told me where everything was located. Very Cool! And an Extremely nice guy! ;o)

I headed upstairs to the free weights to train Deltoids & Chest. I got to my max weight on bench press, the max number of reps I could handle on my own, but was hopin’ to get in a few more with the help of a spotter. I had seen several CRUNCH trainers workin’ with clients and thought perhaps one might assist me. I was scopin’ out the area, when one of the trainers near by saw me lookin’ and asked me if I wanted to get in a few more. Happily, I accepted with his client’s permission to borrow him for a quick minute or two.

Little Did I know….

I finished up on weights and was about to jump on the elliptical to get in my daily cardio, when the next thing I know my friendly spotter was standing next to me. He commented on my strong “Workout Ethic” and then my appearance and asked me what I was “up to”. I explained that I was visiting from out-of-town, Jared had hooked me up and that I was trainin’ for my first bodybuilding competition. He then informed me that I was lookin’ at the 2009 NABBA Champion – Mr. USA!!! I about passed out! I mean here I am, this “Newby” to bodybuilding, and Mr. USA is takin’ notice of me??!!!  My head got SO big I didn’t think I’d be able to exit the gym. ;o)

My new-found friend, Richard Louis, trains folks daily so I fortunately I would be seeing him each morning.

As I checked out, I met Diane. Upon returning my ID, she informed me that she was a spin instructor and told me I ought to check out her class the next morning at 6:30 a.m. Yet another super nice person representing CRUNCH.

Tuesday – Spin Class & Weight Trainin’ (Back & Biceps)

Checked in with smilin’ Anthony and headed to spin. Diane was glad to see I took her up on her offer, maybe even a bit surprised. ;o) I told her I couldn’t pass up an invitation to check out a fellow In-Door Cycling Instructor’s class.

Fort-five minutes later I was headed back upstairs to train back. When I was just about to wrap things up with Abs, I noticed Richard wavin’ at me from across the gym. I was rockin’ out my iPod  – so I had to pause to hear him. He said, “I’ll see you in five minutes.”. He came over and offered some constructive advice on improving my technique for Lat Pull Downs – much appreciated!! We got to chattin’ (imagine that ;o) ) on the topic of food, of all things, and he mentioned a franchise throughout the city that I should check out called “Pump”. I went on to ask what his schedule was like for the remainder of the week, that I was plannin’ on workin’ legs on Wednesday and to my delightful surprise he said he’d train me!!  Yet another score!!

Lunch

I was due to meet a friend for lunch later that day, so I planned to take Richard’s advice and suggest that we check out this place called “Pump. As it turned out the location we chose ended up being called “Fuel”. Kinda apropo since I refer to my nutritional intake as my “Fuel Plan” ;o) Anyway…..the place was AWESOME and had an incredible menu totally geared toward bodybuilders; offering everything from bison, tilapia, ostrich, chicken to 6 egg white omelettes!! It was great! In chatting with the manager, he explained that he had bought that particular “Pump” franchise, changed the name to “Fuel” and expanded the menu – putting his spin on the concept.  Man I wish there was one in my neighborhood!!

Wednesday – Oh Dear Lord Have Mercy!!

I decided to walk the 20 blocks to the gym to be all warmed up for the workout to come. I can’t even begin to express how excited I was to have the opportunity to become Richard’s victim…I mean trainee. ;o) And let me tell you he definitely exceeded ALL my expectations!

He took me through some familiar exercises such as Reclined Leg Presses paired with Hack Squats. Then he showed me a new exercise that really fires up the Glutes paired with an Adductor (inner thigh) move!! He also incorporated some Walking Lunges outside on the sidewalk and we finished up the torture session with chair-less Seated Position against the wall accompanied with exploding Jump Squats. This is when I really began to pray as my legs were literally shakin’!! Schwoooo!! Great Stuff!! I must be sadistic. ;o)

As planned, I met the man who made it ALL possible – Jared! He I had a really nice chat. I was so glad to have the opportunity to express my thanks to him in person!! Jared YOU ROCK!!

Thursday – Chest & Triceps

My legs were not so thrilled to be disturbed upon waking Thursday morning, as I expected, but the REAL brunt of the workout will be felt come Friday. Oh – boy ;o)

Hello’s to Anthony and up the stairs I went to hit the weights, quick conversation with Richard and then cardio was walkin’ the 20 blocks back to my temporary NYC abode.

Friday – Back & Biceps…..& Back to the Sutter SC Scene

As ALWAYS time flies when you’re havin’ fun and this ENTIRE week at CRUNCH has been a BLAST!!

I cannot say enough about the Gym facility, nor the super staff that keeps the folks that walk through its doors motivated to exert their daily dose of CRUNCH.

My SINCEREST thanks to Jared, Richard, Anthony and Diane for the warm welcome and adopting me for the week!



India / Brazil Via New York City

I am and have always been what you might call a “Low Maintenance” kinda girl.

Not one to get professional manicures, nor pedicures and the first time I even had the notion to have my eyebrows shaped up was when my friend set an appointment for me, during a trip to India, to have them “Threaded”….do what??

Facing the sheer fact that come September 18th I will be required to pose wearin’ a mere four triangles of fabric, I decided to seek the guidance from my more “experienced” NYC girlfriends. They recommended a couple different locations, one of which happened to be located near the “Fuel” restaurant mentioned above. So, I decided to stroll on down there to see if they could pamper this untamed dame. ;o)

Unique Threading was located through a single doorway and up a staircase. All of their services were listed as you entered the doorway and come to find out, not only did they offer Eyebrow Threading, but Binki treatments as well. I scaled the stairway and upon entering the establishment asked if they could take me as a “Walk In” for Eyebrow Threading. The answer was “yes”! The nice Indian girl sat me down and I proceeded to tell her that I wanted to have eyebrows after the process – in fact I still wanted to have “thick” eyebrows. I just wanted them shaped up. She ensured me that I would be totally satisfied with her work. And she did a marvelous job! I decided to ask if there was any chance she had time to address the bikini concerns. Once again – “yes”! Fate, well no, Divine Intervention was once again workin’ timing on my behalf. ;O)

The nice girl, once again, assures me that I will not be disappointed and that she will take good care of me. She leads me into a tiny room, just big enough to contain a massage table and the necessary heating elements that warm the “Sugaring Serum”. Sugaring is an “All Natural” method – no chemicals, which is what one of my friends had recommended. I was thrilled that this method was available!

Anyway, she leaves me in the room and says she’ll be back in a few minutes. Meanwhile, I’m takin’ in my small surroundings, takin’ note that there is paper on the massage table, which is makin’ this more and more like a doctor visit (of sorts), but there are no extra pieces of paper – if you follow my drift. So, I continue to stand there pondering what exactly I am supposed to do by the time she returns. Two knocks on the door (similar doctor visit que number 2), I crack the door, peak around and say “Ah – yeah….what am I suppose to do?” She grins real big, asks if this is my “first time”, steps in proceeds to laugh…”I do not mean to laugh at you ma’am, but I am laughing at you ma’am.” Then instructs me to strip from the waste down.

At this point, I havin’ flash backs to my trip to India when my friend set me up for in-home massages. Modesty just gets thrown out the window. There are no strategically positioned sheets – you just get naked and rubbed down. I find myself thankful for having that point of reference to be better prepared for the current circumstances.

I follow her instructions and upon standing back upright she says, “What do you do ma’am? Are you a trainer?” I explain to her the four tiny triangles that I will soon be donning. As I’m asked to lay on the massage table. She says, “You seem like very interesting funny lady ma’am.” She goes on to say, “Ma’am – you have no fat on you ma’am. After having my children I need to lose weight, I cannot lose weight ma’am. How do you lose the weight ma’am? What do you think about smoothies ma’am? I have a smoothie every night.” You can’t make this stuff up I tell ya! ;o)

She proceeds to sell me on goin’ the “whole nine yards” – and I mean that almost literally. (Just kiddin’) Because in such a tiny suit I don’t want to have to worry about any “stragglers” (my terminology – if you couldn’t tell). Sold…..

As she begins the “process”, she promises me that she will be as gentle as she possibly can and explains that at several times she will ask me to take deep breaths. Oh boy…..here we go……

After several “lift offs” and rough “landings”, I reach my final destination…..Brazil.

And once again I find myself volunteerin’ to be a victim. ;o)

In all seriousness, I would TOTALLY recommend Unique Threading on both the excellent, extra gentle care and on the affordable price!!

Latest Recipivity

Two new recipes to share!

One that’s just a spin on my “Apple-A-Day” and the other was a discovery in Tennis Magazine.

Closest Thing to Apple Pie

Core a Granny Smith Apple. Dust it with Saigon Cinnamon and bake at 400 degrees for approximately 35 minutes. (picture to come)

A New Swing – Tennis meets Tapas

Tennis Magazine featured a few recipes of Chef Julian Serrano this month. One in particular caught my attention because it was a new combination of roasted veggies. And after having cooked it a couple times now, I’ve determined that this recipe could be prepared to deliver three different outcomes; an entree side, a salsa of sorts, and a tapenade.

Chef Julian Serrano’s dish is “Escalivada Salad”, and according to him is a popular dish in Barcelona.

Veggie Blend:

Egg Plant

Tomatoes

Peppers

Onions

Other Ingredients:

Balsamic Vinegar

Garlic Cloves

Coarse Salt

Pepper

Olive Oil

While he states to roast the veggies whole and separately from one another, I sliced the veggies and somewhat combined them. In other words, the slices of tomato and eggplant were on the same roasting pan, but not touching each other and the onion ( I coarsely chopped) went in another plan with some of the eggplant slices. I spritz the veggies with the olive oil and season them with the coarse salt and pepper. And I also took the liberty of adding whole cloves of garlic with the onion. This allows for quicker cooking time. If you were to roast the onion whole it would take an hour at 35o degrees, whereas I roasted the sliced and diced veggies at 400 degrees for approximately 35 minutes.

Escalivada Times Three

Basically, you arrive at the three different options – entree side, salsa, or tapenade – by how coarse or fine you cut up the veggies. If you keep the veggies in bigger chunks it’s more or an entree side, cut the veggies finer and it becomes more “salsa” like, and if you were to puree the blend of veggies you would get a spreadable tapenade.

After cutting the veggies add the balsamic vinegar…..doesn’t take much and will depend on how much of the veggie blend you prepare. I’d recommend starting sparingly as you can always add more, but you can’t take away.

Thus far I’ve prepared mine as a side dish, and just as Chef Julian Serrano promises, this stuff gets better as it sets!! (pictures to come)


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