Tuesday, December 29, 2009

The bad, the ugly, and the good.

The BAD:  this morning.  Where do I even begin??  Fail #1:  Finally stepped on the scale.  I gained 4+ pounds from my post-Europe weight.  FML.  I'm pissed, although I shouldn't be.  I haven't been trying to eat healthy or even work out.  That number should get me motivated.  It does explain why I hate all of my clothes and feel so gross lately.  I just haven't been taking care of myself.  That's not a good thing.  In typical New Years fashion, I am vowing to eat healthy and work out.  My goal is to work out 5 days a week.  I know that's hefty (considering the working out has plummeted to a meager one day on a good week), but I feel like if I say 4 then I'll settle at 4.  I'm just so mad at myself for just giving up and not caring enough about myself (and more about food) to stay on the healthy bandwagon.  I mean before this looming 4 pounds I would have liked to lose another 10 before Aruba at the beginning of March.  Geez...it'll take me 2 months to even lose the 4 pounds.  It's time to start caring more about myself and getting back to feeling good.

Fail #2:  I slept with my contacts in last night.  I'm not going to lie...I'm bad about doing it.  Call it laziness?  I hate getting cuddled up in bed and watching tv wearing my glasses; therefore I keep the contacts in.  After I'm cuddled up, often I am too lazy and comfy to get out of bed and take them out.  Ok...back to the story.  My left contact is bothering me when I wake up.  I take it out a couple times and sort of inspect it.  It doesn't have hair on it or seem to have a tear.  It isn't terribly bothering me.  I can still see.  It isn't making my eye water or turn all red.  It's bothering enough though.  On a third inspection...I notice a minute tear on the edge of the contact.  So I figure I'll throw it away and get another one.  At our other house, I had a bag of a few boxes of contacted in the bathroom cabinet.  After moving, I had a couple of ideas where this bag may have gone.  Well...fml, of course I couldn't find it.  On a normal day, I would just roll with wearing my glasses and all would be cool.  But today is not a normal day.  Today is the day I have to drive to downtown Atlanta.  Today is the day of the Lady Gaga concert that I MUST be able to see adequately.  Ok...so I'm going to get into some TMI here and everyone is probably going to be grossed/weirded out by what is to follow.  So there are a few things running through my head...leave work early and get an appointment to get some more contacts!  Well...I have no money.  I kept debating that one...but I just did not want to deal with that and literally have no money to afford that today.  Second thought...find the other contact and deal with it.  Picture this:  me digging through my trashcan to find this contact with the small tear.  That's what I had to go with.  To make the situation at least sound better, I did not immediately put the contact back in my eye (ew).  I wore my glasses to work and will put in my contacts (after they've been sanitizing in contact solution all day).  This fail put me in a terrible mood.  And I still don't know where those dang contacts are!

The UGLY:  Before the scale and the contact situation, I was promptly awakened to Marlee gagging at the door.  The dogs don't throw up too often...but when they do it always happens in the early morning.  I hear it, bolt out of bed, and run the dog to the door.  As I was bolting up on this particular morning, Bailey (the cat) scratched the hell out of my arm.  This is no way to start my morning.

The GOOD:  Just to end on a positive note! Lady Gaga concert tonight with KD!  Yayyyyyyyyy!  And I guess I am proud of myself for going to work out yesterday.  I didn't run this morning, but I vow to go tomorrow.  And I'll post lots of pictures from the Gaga show!

Saturday, December 26, 2009

Merry Christmas non-traditional style.

After my family did a Mexican style Christmas eve dinner and D's family did a traditional Christmas eve dinner, on Christmas Day D and I did a non traditional dinner.  Since both of our families live in town, we took in on our own accord to do a traditional Christmas night dinner together.  Our "tradition" is to open our gifts and stockings on Christmas morning (after we moved in together) and then hit up our fam's houses usually for brunch or something.  Then we come back and make a dinner with a ham or turkey, mac and cheese, etc. etc.  This year we went a little non traditional and did a steak dinner!  Yum.  D is the best cook.  We're/I'm currently contemplating an agreement that he cooks and I clean after we get married ;)  Anyway...pics of the delish meal coming together..

Steaks marinating...D is the marinade man ;)


Green beans


Mashed potatoes...probably the most fattening mashed potatoes ever...with cream (at least it was light?), cheese, and LOTS of butter

The cook


Yes, not the best health proportions.  But hey, it's the holidays!

And after eating that, plus all the candy I got in stocking, I desperately need to go to the gym.  I'm getting pretty motivated with the impending honeymoon and looking good in the wedding dress and a swim suit.  Gym...here I come!!

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Merry Christmas Mexican style.

So this year, we're missing out on my fam's Xmas eve dinner to do Xmas
eve w D's fam. My family has gotten out of the traditional Christmas
dinner within the past few years though. They're doing a Mexican
style dinner. So I sent some delicious chicken empanadas with them
for dinner!

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Book Review: Half the Sky.

Half the Sky is the book we read a couple of months ago for our book club.   Now, I'm not very eloquent when just writing off the top of my head (and I just don't have time to do the formal research on the book that you all deserve).  But here is the blurb off their website:

Half the Sky lays out an agenda for the world's women and three major abuses: sex trafficking and forced prostitution; gender-based violence including honor killings and mass rape; maternal mortality, which needlessly claims one woman a minute. We know there are many worthy causes competing for attention in the world. We focus on this one because this kind of oppression feels transcendent – and so does the opportunity. Outsiders can truly make a difference.
The book is an amazing and necessary read for women I think.  The stories really touch you.  I know the book has been featured on multiple talk and TV shows (Oprah and the Colbert Report to name a couple).  I could only dream of ever being able to travel to foreign countries speaking to women about human rights.  The book really touched me, aside from the fact that it brings light to the gross inequities that exist in the world, but there are also multiple stories about girls/women from Cambodia.  One of my sisters is adopted from Cambodia, so the country holds a special place in my heart.  I'm passing the book on to my mom this month.  I hope it opens minds and gives people an understanding of actions that most of us are ignorant/unaware of.  I'm a big fan of nonfiction myself.  We had awesome discussions about the book at book club.  I think it still ranks as some people's favorite book thus far.  Please read it.  Definitely recommended.  

Monday, December 21, 2009

2009 in review.

Hmmm...I don't know what to think about 2009 so far.

Negatives (to get them over and end on a positive note):  It's been marked with major celebrity deaths.  I still have my same job which, let's just say, I don't love.  We're still living in Athens.  I lost weight at the beginning of the year but didn't continue throughout the end (semi-positive at least I've mostly maintained and not gained it all back).  The official job search began and it sucks, sucks, sucks.  Family drama has presented itself.

Positives (yay!):  We moved to a smaller, more quaint and appropriately sized house.  We went to Europe for a month (and I was graciously granted paid leave for the majority)!  We got engaged!  News that we will officially be moving in 2010.  Friends still nearby in Athens.  Book club.

Now some "Best Of's"...only because I am lame and trying to make my blog a little more exciting ;)

Best Movie:

Ok...not going to lie...I had to google a list of movies that came out in 2009.  I have a terrible memory and can not for the life of me remember which movies came out when.  But...google did not have very good and comprehensive lists of 2009 movies either.  Anyhow, off the top of my head I decided on

D and I saw this in the dollar theater.  I won't lie...I felt uncomfortable and stressed for a large portion of the movie.  But it was also hilarious.  Even when I think back on it, I laugh.  Plus, I love Ed Helms.  Hilarious.

Best TV Series:

This came down to two different types.  D and I have become obsessed with Netflix this year.  So via Netflix, my best "old" TV series is...

I'm obsessed.  It is amazing!  We're almost through Season 5, and Season 6 premieres in early February.  Love it.
Best "current" TV series is, no question...

Must see TV on Thursdays is amazing.  The Office has always ranked high on my list.  Parks and Recreation has moved up on my list.  At this point, nothing surpasses 30 Rock for me.  I'm not even an Alec Baldwin fan.  There is not a single episode when I die laughing.  Definitely best current TV series.

Best Music:

Only one person comes to mind...LADY GAGA.

She is epic and wonderful.  Her music is catchy and stays in my head.  I mean even D has broke out singing p-p-p-p poker face, p-p poker face.  I have purchased The Fame and The Fame Monster.  Yes, she is out there.  Yes, some people hate her.  But, I admire her.  She exudes self-confidence.  Love her or hate her...she's infamous.  Ps. dying over the hello kitty dress.  

Best Vacation:

I imagine this goes without saying but....obv. EUROPE!  There are so many awesome pics I want to post from the trip, but for now, I'm narrowing it down to one per city.  We took only backpacks (and one carry on) and jumped between cities for a month.  I die when I look back through the pictures...I want to live in Europe so bad.

Prage - D and I with the Charles Bridge as the back drop.

 The first pic is just of us in a bar/restaurant around Munich.  The second is from my favorite meal of the trip.  It was at the beer garden at the Augustiner brewery.  I would die to go back.

Third stop...Cinque Terre, Italy.  Also the location of our engagement on June 22, 2009.  Check out this post for the full story and more pics on my favorite place in the world.

 Interlaken, Switzerland

Obv in Paris :)

Brugge, Belgium...one of our fav places.

Brussels, Belgium

Dusseldorf, Germany

And last but not least, Amsterdam

Trip of a lifetime.

Best Purchase:

With all of our saving for Europe, I didn't make that many purchases.  I was hoping to put a pair of fabulous shoes or a durable signature piece of clothing on the list.  I can't think of one that sticks out.  So my most notable purchase was...

My iPhone!  Yay!  Life changer :) 

For now, those are all the Best Of's I can think about...I'll edit if I can think of more.  Check for upcoming posts about...what I'm looking forward to in 2010 & goals/resolutions for 2010.  Bring it on 2010!

Most Surprising Celeb Moment:


The Chris Brown/Rihanna domestic violence drama.  This was shocking.  A lot of crazy shocking celeb moments happened throughout the year (including most recent, Brittany Murphy's death).  I think this was shocking for me because it is just something completely unexpected.  I think Rihanna definitely gave, and still gives, off an independent, strong woman kind of vibe.  And Chris Brown!  I thought he gave off an "innocent, young" vibe.  I was shocked that he could do that.  But it just goes to show that these things can happen to anyone...no matter what one's personality is like or how "strong" one may be percieved as being.

I'll end you with a few other notables from 2009:

Georgia blizzard of 2009:

March 2009...We got a couple of days off work!  I can't remember how many inches of snow, but the second picture is the morning after.  It was crazy!

Less than a week after the blizzard...our backpacking trip to Panther Creek:

This was my first backpacking experience.  I fell twice and twisted/sprained once on the way in and again on the way out.  My ankle was swollen for like a week after.  Fun experience, but I think some of the heights may have scarred me for life.

Friends get married...October 2009:

 Soon to be newlyweds at the rehearsal dinner

Me and D at the rehearsal...more pics from the actual wedding can be found from this earlier post.  At first I thought this was our only wedding of 2009.  Then I remembered D was in his friend Donny's wedding in May right before we left for Europe.  I guess I didn't take any pictures from that.

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Feliz Navidad.

Baby Harper aka Mrs. Claus

And Santa Bailey

Thank goodness for the holidays for a cheer-me-up.  I had a rough day on Friday.  I had anticipated posting but instead I just wanted to wallow in my own misery for a bit.  Last week was just a super stressful and rough week.  I have had so much going on with work and in my personal life.  I don't even really want to get into all the logistics of my stress.  But it's been tough.  I'm still on the job hunt.  That's putting a major stress on my life.  Sigh.  That's just not something I can think about right now.  I am putting that on hold for the holidays.  And work is just really getting to me recently.  What I would give to have a two week holiday like the school systems...ugh.

This weekend we had our annual beer dinner with some of the Terrapin peeps in Atlanta.  Each couple has to come up with a dish and pair it properly with a beer.  It also ended up being much more of a stress than I would have preferred.  It went really well though!  The food was delicious.  The beer pairings were delicious.  I'll post pictures and info on that later.  The problem was that I had another bronchitis spell.  It got to the point where I couldn't breathe.  It certainly made the dinner less enjoyable. 

Anyway, I know this is a weak update.  I'm in the middle of watching Kendra: Here Comes Baby on E!  Come on...my guilty pleasure is reality tv.  Not going to lie though...I'm still grossed out by much pregnancy related info (the belly...the water breaking?!...etc).  Ooo and next is the Kardashians.  Omg.  In love with the Kardashian family.  Promise to update later this week!

Sunday, December 13, 2009

It's the most wonderful time of the year!

Ahhhhh...December weekends.  Stores packed to the brim....endless traffic...lights on lamposts...free shipping on all the websites.  I kid, I kid.  I LOVE December.  I've been looking forward to cooler weather.  I love the lights, having a Christmas tree, and all the decorations.  I also have a LOVE for buying Christmas cards.  They're so cute!  I can't deny them.  I couldn't find any images online, but we found some cute "How the Grinch Stole Christmas" cards and some adorable ones from Borders.

We've had a very lazy, yet accomplished weekend!  Before this weekend, I had not started any Christmas shopping.  On Saturday, D and I braved Target.  It really wasn't that bad.  I scored some items for my siblings.  Check for gifts on all three sibs.  Still want to add another item for my brother.  Scored some items for D's family...well namely his/our niece.  Got some necessities for the house....purchased more Christmas cards ;)  Luckily I'm just chipping in money on gifts for my mom and dad.  After a long day of shopping, D made some dinner and we continued season 5 of Lost (thanks to Netflix!).

Today, we also slept in and D made breakfast (same as yesterday...I adore him on the weekends).  Then we sat around most of the day being lazy.  I did practically finish my Christmas shopping online.  I got everything I wanted for D online (and as usual spent way more money than I intended).  After both of us spending a lot of time on the computer, we finally got up and went out to eat some Mexican.  D says he's going to start eating healthy tomorrow.  I say every weekday that I am going to start (again) going to the gym in the mornings.  Maybe we'll motivate each other?  Then after Mexican we went to see the new "A Christmas Carol" in 3D.  Now let me tell you, it is rated PG but should totally be rated PG-13.  It was good and probably very true to the actual Charles Dickens' story.  I think it would be creepy and scary for children though.  Even with a parent, I would not want my sisters (ages 10 and 7) to see it.  The graphics were really great though.  Anyhow, score for a lazy weekend with my guy :)

Monday, December 7, 2009

I got it!

That's right...my elopement dress came a day early! It's so pretty! I
love all the little details in it. It's very close to my Vera Wang
dream dress. Of course it's too long...nothing a little altering
can't fix. But...I need to get my ass to the gym. Don't get me
wrong...the dress fits perfect, but I want to tone up. I want to tone
my arms and belly (and who doesn't want to look better in a bikini
anyway). I hope this will be my motivator. Someone said to me, if
you can't get into shape for this one time in your life, then you
probably never will. I guess what I'm struggling with a little bit
the idea that 3 months is not really enough time to make a difference
(at my weight). I need to though. Even if it isn't a visible
difference, it can't hurt to feel better about myself! I have to do
it!!! Think about the dress. Think about the dress. Hopefully it'll
pull me out of the bed in the morning.
We also registered this weekend. I'll have to post on that later.
It's a process! We registered at Target and at honeyfund.com (it's an
awesome site that allows people to contribute to activities we do on
our honeymoon...elopement/pre-honeymoon in our case). And picking out
save the dates on Wed!
Sent from my iPhone

Friday, December 4, 2009

I adore ellen and portia.

But I especially love Portia in this interview from the view:


She could not have said it any better.  I'm beyond frustrated by the fact that Americans continually make gay rights an issue of religion and other bullshit.  People used to make segregation a religious issue too.  It's completely unfair and prejudicial.  And I am not sure that I have ever seen a cuter couple than Ellen and Portia.  Plus I adore Ellen's show and Arrested Development :)

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Even more officialness!

Note sure if officialness is a word.  Spell check didn't point it out though.  Anyway...


March 27 :)  That's our party date.  So weird that it's getting closer and way more official.  Omg.  I am actually getting married.  So crazy.  I'm also feeling a little weird that I am talking about wedding/party planning so much.  It's just so not me...I'm working on our wedding website.  sigh.  I didn't want to.  I'm pretty anti-weddingwebsite.  Since we are doing save the date/invite combo mailings, it's easier to just have people RSVP on a website.  Plus, I suppose it is a way to allow people to feel a little more involved in the process of things even though we aren't having a ceremony.  I'm not too nervous about getting everything done.  I'm more nervous about figuring out how to pay for everything.  It'll work out.  Just cross your fingers that mine and D's cars sustain for at least six more months.

On the job news front, there really is no news.  I have gotten a couple calls from principals at schools in North Carolina.  Nothing has worked out thus far though.  Two of the school systems really weren't in areas where D wants to live in NC.  I got a call from the Washington DC version of DFCS.  I cringe at the thought.  I haven't called her back yet...but I need to so I keep all options open.  We bailed on the trip to Philly this weekend for my Teaching Fellows interview.  It just wasn't a realistic option financially right now.  I'm hoping to be able to reschedule soon.  It's going to be REALLY tough to schedule/afford any out-of-town interviews while trying to pay for the wedding celebrations as well.  I did find out that before I can be hired in Philly (on my own without a Teaching Fellows program behind me) as a special ed teacher doing alternative certification, I have to be enrolled in a college teaching program.  I can't do that unless I find a job and know I'm moving there.  Keep your fingers crossed for me to find a job soon!

I've been sick for like a month now.  It's super frustrating because I NEVER get sick.  Maybe it's stress and not taking care of myself (eating terribly and not working out).  Although it's hard to adequately take care of myself when I can't stop coughing and can't breathe.  Speaking of...time for me to head to the bedroom and try to breathe long enough to get to sleep.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009


Ok.  I'm not going to lie...I have no clue what to give D this year for Christmas.  We're going slack on the gifts since we're saving up for the wedding/elopement.  I was thinking on spending around $50 and then doing stocking stuffers.  We always do stockings :)  Previous years:  Besides our very first Christmas together, 3 Christmases ago, I sort of got him a Wii.  By sort of I mean that its what I really wanted to get him but they were so out everywhere.  Then I got him a special Wii gift card to WalMart (cringe).  He ended up finally getting a Wii in like Feb. or something.  Anyway...the idea that year was a Wii.  Next year, I got him a camera he wanted.  Last year, I got him a GPS.  Even if I was going to spend more money, what would I get?  I've outdone myself (at least in the reasonable $200 range).  I have one idea that is $30...which again I don't want to put on here just in case he reads this.  But I'm not sure if he would really want this to be his main gift.  I have another idea for around $40 that I know he would like...but I'm thinking it's something we could probably put on our wedding registry.  I'm at a loss this year.  I'm going to try and get a little more direction from D. 

On a happy holidays note...we put up our Christmas tree on Sunday.  It's sort of small and pitiful...but we love it nonetheless.  And the cats haven't knocked it over yet (knock on wood).  And notice our new stockings...we purchased those super cheap from Target after Christmas last year :)

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

It's official.

So after the generosity of D's parents, we officially have an elopement plan!  We're going to ARUBA March 6 through March 13 of next year!  I'm thrilled!  I just can't wait to start planning things.  I've already picked out a dress for only $250!!  I won't post that here just in case D looks.  I've been in touch with some photographers in Aruba and going over to my parents to start hashing out some details tonight.  We haven't picked a date for the party yet, but it'll probably be March 21 or March 27.

Orders of Business:

-Dress:  DONE, $250 (which my parents are so graciously purchasing)
-Save the Dates/Invites
-Aruba wedding details
   - Flowers
   - Etc.
-Photography for party
-Food for the party
-Decor for the party
   - Tablecloths
   - Eatingware (plates, napkins, forks, etc.)
-Music for the party
-Party locale:  DONE; Free @ the brewery

I'm sure there is PLENTY more I am leaving out.  I'll post some more stuff later with my ideas and such :)


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