Apparently we have dinner reservations tonight. I told Brian I had other plans and he said "cancel them." So I did. I canceled my plans to go to a spin class with my other love of my life, Matt P. at Crunch.

Thankful Things Thursday: Love

Date: February 14, 2013 at 8:47 am- by Ali- Comment(s): 43

I’m here.

I’m here!

Home sweet cigarette-smoke-smelling city. It’s good-ish to be back.

Maybe you thought I’d fled for a while and ditched this whole blogging thing. I thought about it, honestly. I took a few days off because I was busy before I left for Colorado. Then I was in Colorado and I refused to turn on my computer for the duration of the trip. Then I got back and I was busy again, and the thought of writing just seemed too daunting. Where to even begin?

And I’m sick.

I was sick before I left for my trip, I was sick while I was there and, somehow, I returned to New York even sicker than I was when I left. Crohn’s is the coolest.

My first stop upon returning to NYC: Mount Sinai’s infusion center for a hefty dose of Remicade. I wore sequins because I’m festive lady. I’m wearing sequins again today, FYI.

I have many thoughts swirling in my brain, but today let’s return to the tried-and-true: It’s a multi-holiday-day and I came to celebrate.

It’s Thankful Things Thursday, and we all know what to do with that. We’ll proceed as normal along that happy brick road.

And, as the world keeps reminding us all — the NYC streets, in particular, are absolutely packed with delivery men hauling massive bouquets to lucky ladies around the borough — it’s also Valentine’s Day.

I’ve made it fairly clear before that I’m no huge fan of Valentine’s Day. The sentiment is nice, but social media has turned a day of love into a day of “post pictures of your flowers from your hubby because he’s totally the best!”

But I’m not against a day to celebrate and acknowledge love. I love love.

I’m thankful for love. In all its forms.

I’m thankful for my littlest Valentine.

Oh tiny Cupid, you’re killing me.

Tyler has changed my world. He makes me want to be a more decent person. He makes me want to set a good example. And my god, he makes me smile.

HIS FEET ARE SMALL BUT HIS HEAD IS BIG. Baby proportions make no sense but it doesn’t matter.

Snow bunny with Nike kicks!

I’m thankful for my most supportive Valentine. No one sets a bar higher than my dad, and no one makes me want to leap over that bar with aplomb and power quite like he does. Also, dad, will you do my taxes this year? We can talk about it. I’m very organized with my paperwork.

No one gets Tyler time when my dad is around. Remember when we were going to call him Big Papi when he became a grandfather? I’m somewhat surprised that didn’t stick. Sorry, mom. It was a REALLY clever idea, though.

I’m thankful for my Momentine. That’s probably not a word. But my mom is always a good Valentine. Last year she sent me an entire shoebox filled with “granola bars.” I’ll take a box of Entenmann’s over Reese’s any day.

I’m thankful for my Galentines. (“Parks and Recreation” reference…I really wanted to use it and there’s really only one day a year when I can.) This weekend, I get to reunite with all my best college girls at my dear friend Lauren’s wedding. This wedding is going to be off-the-charts incredible because Lauren has fancy taste. I don’t even remember the last time we were all together and we’ll be all dressed up and there will be dancing. I’m also in the wedding, and even though Lauren has not explicitly given me permission to jazz hand walk my way down the aisle, I know that in her mind she will be OK with it.

I’m thankful for my work Valentines. I spend more time with these women than I do with Brian. We’ve all become quite close over the past year and they are remarkable people. They make me laugh, we’ve seen each other cry and they know not to ask too many questions when I’m flaring and they can’t find me at my desk. They are also the best dressers.

The Dance Spirit squad on Valentine’s Day last year. I’m wearing that same skirt again this year. I guess I should really stock up on more red and pink items. BRIAN, CAN WE GO TO THE OUTLETS NEXT WEEKEND?

I’m thankful for my Valentine Valentine. Hi, Brian. How you doin’?

Apparently we have dinner reservations tonight. I told Brian I had other plans and he said “cancel them.” So I did. I canceled my plans to go to a spin class with my other love of my life, Matt P. at Crunch.

I’m thankful I survived the Colorado getaway.

Over the moguls and through the woods, down to the ski lodge we go…

There were several times throughout the trip when I thought I may not make it out alive. The plane ride out, for example, was a rough go. The poor aisle seat girl finally asked if I wanted to switch with her, granting me easier access to the bathroom. She was nice. I felt badly.

The view as we left Laguardia Airport last Thursday morning. It was OK.

Then there was that time during day three of the trip when Brian convinced me it would be “fun” to do some extreme adventuring. “Fun” by his definition meant taking off my skis and hiking up Aspen’s Highland Bowl. Apparently this is a thing people do. For “fun.”

And yet…yeah…I’m not an expert skier. I think that’s fairly obvious. But I’m an adventurer, dang it! So I skied past that sign, removed my skis and began to hike. And then proceeded to whine my way up the mountain…and then back down it.

I didn’t think it was very fun.


I thought hiking — while wearing ski boots and 400 layers of Dry Fit and carrying my skis and poles — was a dumb idea.

I whimpered and Brian took photos. Because, you know, hiking isn’t difficult for him. I blame it on the fact that he was wearing comfortable snowboard boots and I was in those god-awful ski boot feet murderers.

An even dumber idea was “dropping in” to the “bowl” and skiing down the side of the mountain. Into trees. And through moguls. And basically just doing really dumb shit.

You hike up this thing. And then just “drop in” wherever seems “safe” and not in an “avalanche warning zone.” Excellent.

Cue slight panic attack. Brian said to me at this point, “If you’re scared, we can hike back out.” The word “hike” gave me the little push I needed to just plow downhill and hope I came out alive.

I’m thankful for my ski helmet. Best purchase of the trip. I skied directly into two trees on my way down the Highland Bowl. Oops. (Breathe, Momentine. You know this all turned out OK…I’m here typing, aren’t I?)

Even experts wear helmets.

I’m thankful for hot things, like chocolate and tubs. I can’t think of a better way to end a day on the slopes than with whipped-cream-topped hot chocolate and a long soak in a hot tub. I took advantage of both things every day while in Colorado.

Molly, Rob and me before Hot Tub Night 1. The house had robes in every room. It felt very luxurious to me, a commoner.

I’m thankful for SoulCycle. I hate that I love it. But I do. I love the loud music. I love being packed tightly into the room surrounded by sweaty people. I love the wacky choreographing and the arm sections.

There are plenty of things I disagree with when it comes to SoulCycle (like, uh, the price and the politics). But it’s the only place I’ve found that even remotely makes me forget I’m not running.

And somehow, even after a messy 45-minute class, the room never smells like sweaty people. It always smells amazing.

Because yeah. I’m not running. I don’t even remember the last time I ran. And I’m sad about it. I really miss it. I don’t feel my best without it. No amount of spinning can completely supplement my running void. SoulCycle comes closest, but it’s no Reservoir. It’s no Bridle Path. It’s not even a treadmill.

Normally when I experience a flare-up, I try to power through. I try to run. I have to make a ton of stops and it’s never comfortable, convenient or particularly fun. In fact it’s really, really hard. But I always did it because I felt like I could. Because I felt like I should.

This time, I don’t feel that way.

I am just not up for the defeat of stopping at every Starbucks from here to Central Park. I can’t handle the mental anxiety trying to run will inevitably cause, and I’m not training for anything so I don’t feel the need to attempt to get out there.

It sucks, though. I used to feel strong enough to run during flare-ups. This time I don’t.

But I’ll come full circle. I’ll run again eventually.

And until then, I’ll spin when I can, I’ll rest when I should and I’ll do my best not to wallow. Promise.


I’m thankful for everything I can still do when I’m sick. I had a little meltdown the night before the trip because I felt so sick and the antibiotics Dr. Hotness gave me weren’t working at all. I called my mom and told her I didn’t even want to go.

The four-hour road trip from the airport to the house was the worst part for me. There are not many rest stops in the middles of nowhere.

I didn’t feel great while I was away. The mornings were bad, the night sweats came back and there were times on the mountain when I got slightly panicky. Overall, though, I got in plenty of ski time and that fresh Colorado air was good for my body, mind, soul and lungs.

The first day was 46 degrees. The fourth day was 9 degrees.

I’ll stop being gushy now.

Remember Gushers? That snack that exploded when you chewed it? I never tried them. Cool story.

I hope you’re loving love today. Give many hugs and kisses to your friends, family members, pets and maybe even some total strangers.

Maybe not total strangers.

Happy Valentine’s Day. I love you.

NOW BE THANKFUL AND LOVEY: What are you thankful for today? Your Valentine? Your Galentine? Your puppy? Heart-shaped boxes of chocolate? Cadbury Mini Eggs?

Comments (43)
"Waitressing" AKA "serving alcohol to everyone I went to college with."

Manic Monday Musings

Date: February 4, 2013 at 8:06 am- by Ali- Comment(s): 47

Hello! Let’s get right into it. I’m still not feeling great. I’m still not spending my time running because bouncing up and down is not something my dumb disease will get on board with right now. And while that makes […]

Rockin' the hair nets.

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Posted in Crohn's disease and tagged -
Not the most centered screen shot...please don't steal my registration number. Or my identity. Actually, go ahead and take my identity. That means you also assume responsibility for any pending payments or bank overdraft fees, right? ENJOY BEING ALI FELLER!!!

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Date: January 23, 2013 at 5:38 am- by Ali- Comment(s): 114

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Posted in Uncategorized and tagged -
See what I did there? Tying in the word sweet as a regular adjective and making it about cookies, too? Where's my friggin' Pulitzer?

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Date: January 21, 2013 at 8:12 am- by Ali- Comment(s): 41

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Posted in Happy Things and tagged , , -
Sunrise picture. Makes me temporarily forget about the pain in the digestive system.

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Date: January 18, 2013 at 6:53 am- by Ali- Comment(s): 69

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Photo stolen from Instagram, which I have never used nor browsed. But my friend sent it to me last night and I was all, hell yeah, I'm going to screen shot that! Sweet photo! Snow!

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I hate myself for writing that title. And yet…I did it anyway. Will Smith, I hope you’re proud. Here’s the thing about today: I need a hefty dose of Thankful Things Thursday. Sometimes, as I mentioned a few weeks ago, […]

Just a little something I whipped up. 

No, just kidding. Brian made this. Show-off.

Kitchen Nightmares

Date: January 16, 2013 at 6:34 am- by Ali- Comment(s): 48

Remember last week when I was like, “Hey everyone! I have run out of food ideas! Can you help me? K great, thanks!” And then you came out in droves and you helped me? And I promised to report back […]

Posted in Food and tagged , -